{Giveaway} and 10 Wonderful Winter Reads 2013

{Giveaway} and 10 Wonderful Winter Reads 2013

Hey there ladies and gentlemen.  No recipe for you all today. Rather, I have prepared a list of 10 Wonderful Winter Reads. Just in case you are barricaded up under a blanket of snow, twiddling your thumbs and waiting for the world to thaw. (I know that couldn’t possibly be true and that you are most likely running around with all manner of busy-ness taking hold of your lives.) However, if you are like me, spending some time curled up with a good book is one of lifes simple pleasures. And so if you are looking for something to read, here is a list of some of my favorites. I tried to include a wide variety of genres including Classics, Historical Fiction, Young Adult Post Apocalyptic, a couple of Lovely Romances and one book that will have you crying with laughter.  I am planning to post a book list for you all twice a year, once in the summer and once in the winter.  To see the list I posted this past summer, click here.

I would love to give one of you a $25 Amazon Gift Card so you could buy some of these books, or some pretty nail polish, a few rubber spatulas or a handy toilet plunger. Whatever you seem to be needing the most at this time in your life! To enter the giveaway just leave me a comment telling me one of your favorite books. Giveaway will be open through Thursday January 24th. Winner will be announced on Friday morning.

The Diary Of Mattie Spenser by Sandra Dallas is the story of a young woman who marries and finds herself living in the middle of no where, far away from her family. It’s about love, marriage, devotion, working through difficult circumstances and choosing to make the best of the life we are given. I loved the main character. She was a real “ox of a woman”. Which is a great thing to be. 🙂

Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson is an easy to read, captivating, light-hearted, super clean romance. For those of you who love a good old-fashioned love story, you won’t be able to put this down. I loved it from start to finish. It was charming, to say the least.

The Wednesday Wars by Gary D Schmidt is about a boy living in the 60s, his relationships with family, friends and the teachers at his school.  While this book fits into the category of Juvenile Fiction, it is masterfully written. It’s clever, heart warming, a little bit sad and sometimes down right hilarious. Even MyHandsomeHusband loves this book. There is a lot of good in it!

Legend by Marie Lu is a Young Adult Post Apocalyptic Novel. What does that mean to you? I will give it to you plain and simple. If you liked The Hunger Games, you will like this book as well. Little bit of love, world turned upside down, crazy circumstances, she-rah type heroine. Like I said…it’s kind of Hunger Games-ish.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett is a book you most likely have heard a lot about in the last couple of years. I will go ahead and give my two thumbs up, along with all of the other fans of this fabulously told story. It takes place during The Civil Rights Movement and is the story of several black maids living in Mississippi. It is captivating, heart warming, heart breaking!, informational, comical and inspiring.

Follow the River by James Alexander Thom takes place in early America. A young, pregnant mother and her two small children are taken from their frontier home by indians. Based on a true story this book is both amazing and inspiring. It will make you grateful for every single second of your life.

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (the abridged version) is one of my all time favorite books. While the story line is sometimes very dark and depressing, the beautiful message of love, forgiveness and God’s grace is both inspiring and amazing. And good glory! Go to see the movie that just came out, won’t you. It is absolutely stunning. The acting is beyond exceptional and while the singing is pretty raw and sometimes lacking the overall production is glorious. Truly. 🙂 See it soon, man.

The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom is a Historical Fiction book set in the early 1800’s. It’s about slavery, family, kindness and love. It also portrays the difficulties that faced black slaves when owned by corrupt white men.

A Walk To Remember by Nicholas Sparks is another heart warming (very clean) romance. It is an easy enough read that most junior high students could handle it with no problem. (Just in case you know any junior high aged students looking for something good to read). Be warned that you may need to read it with a box of tissues close at hand.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows is a Historical Fiction Novel set during WWII and the years immediately following. The dialog is unique in that the story is completely told in letter format. This was a bit strange to me at first, but I ended up really liking it. It was fun to see each characters individual view. And speaking of the characters! They are extremely realistic and endearing. I wished I could sit down with almost all of them and have a nice long visit. Loved this book. 🙂

Hope you find something to enjoy within this list. New recipe coming up on Monday morning. See you then!

PS…try and stay warm, won’t you!


Post a comment!


  1. 1
    January 19, 2013 at 9:16 am

    I loved The Help and The Kitchen House. I read both in a matter of days which is not easy for me, I basically ignored my kids and my responsibilities. I also loved State of Wonder by Ann Patchett.

  2. 2
    January 19, 2013 at 9:27 am

    Thanks for the suggestions! So many good books, so little time. I loved Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker was pretty good. Lonesome Dove is an all-time favorite. Not sure I could pick just one!

  3. 3
    Shelley C
    January 19, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Haven’t read much lately, but I appreciate the listing of books you gave…I like to know that a book is clean before starting to read.
    One book I read every few years is The Three Musketeers… just love the time period and the writing style. I love the classics!

    • 4
      February 6, 2014 at 6:28 am

      The sure fire way to turn a helpful doiucssisn into an uncomfortable argument is taking things personal. But, that’s human nature.I can not help but wonder if even well educated people cannot stay on the topic at hand for the learning experience, then I can’t have much hope for any stimulating and useful doiucssisn.Just a thought.

  4. 5
    January 19, 2013 at 9:39 am

    One of my favorite books is Game of Thrones

  5. 6
    Katy Judy
    January 19, 2013 at 9:46 am

    Probably my very favorite of all: Butterfly by Kathryn Harvey – don’t blame me when the laundry and dishes don’t get done !

  6. 7
    Rebecca Hyer
    January 19, 2013 at 9:49 am

    My latest read was the Hunger Games series. Loved it!

  7. 8
    January 19, 2013 at 10:04 am

    I just finished Graceling by Kristin Cashore and really enjoyed it!

  8. 9
    January 19, 2013 at 10:12 am

    Thanks for your book suggestions. I have read several, but not all of them..I will add them to my list! I love to read and cannot really tell you a favorite, I could make a long list! One that I think you would enjoy is : The Baker’s Daughter by Sarah McCoy , there are great recipes at the end of the book that were in the story.

  9. 10
    January 19, 2013 at 11:18 am

    I was so excited for this list. I haven’t read much lately, but love to read. One of the things that my 87 year old mother loves is reading (maybe too much?) She loves all the Richard Paul Evans books. This list & many of the comments will give me some great new options for her to enjoy.


  10. 11
    January 19, 2013 at 11:25 am

    This is probably not an easy read because there are probably only about 20 paragraphs for the whole book and the sentences a paragraph long, but I loved the writing and words. The consciousness of thought is flowing as our brains do for one thought to the next. Austerlitz by W.G. Sebald

  11. 12
    Diane Westmoreland
    January 19, 2013 at 12:07 pm

    I so enjoyed the Walk to Remember, by Nicholas Sparks. He is a fantastic writer.

  12. 13
    Barbara Carini
    January 19, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    I’ve enjoyed a few of your favorites and am looking forward to the others. If you really want to cry read The Lovely Bones. Beautiful.

  13. 14
    Lisa Evanoff
    January 19, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    One of my new favorite books is “Daughter of a thousand pieces of Gold” by Peg Helminski…could not put it down

  14. 15
    sheri albee
    January 19, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    One of my favorite books is My Name Is Asher Lev.

  15. 16
    January 19, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    Oh heavens did I LOVE Edenbrooke! One of my favorites. My all time favorites are the Tigers Curse series(suddenly can’t remember the author), and Austenland by Shannon Hale, love her as an author! I’ve read EVERY.SINGLE.BOOK. she’s wrote. Thanks for this list, can’t wait to check all these out. I love a good clean book.

  16. 17
    January 19, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    I think The Help is my favorite book in recent years. My sister gave me 11/22/63 by Stephen King over Christmas. It isn’t a usual Stephen King but instead is about a man who can transport back in history and tries to change the course of events. Interesting.

  17. 18
    January 19, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    I recently read a book by Kristin Hannah, ‘On Lake Mystic’. It was very good and I would recommend it to any mother!

  18. 19
    Connie Pruitt
    January 19, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    I loved The Help. And I love to read.

  19. 20
    January 19, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    I have been reading the Tairen Soul series by C. L. Wilson

  20. 21
    January 19, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    Pride and Predjudice is all time fav. But recently read The Help and can’t stop recommending it!

  21. 22
    January 19, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    My new love is Edenbrooke. An old love is Jane Eyre. And I am currently reading the Betsy Tacy series.

  22. 23
    Kelli C
    January 19, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    I am on a John Grisham kick recently. I love how they make me think!

  23. 24
    Kelly B
    January 19, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    I love to read! I recently enjoyed the Hunger Games series.

  24. 25
    January 19, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    One my favorite reads is “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. A tory based on the emprisonment of the Japanese in America during World War II. I lived in that era so it was very real to me.

  25. 26
    January 19, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Life of Pi was unexpected!

  26. 27
    Darlene L
    January 19, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    I read such a wide variety of books. Recently I have been reading several series of Amish books by Beverly Lewis. I enjoy learning more about their culture. Some even have wonderful recipes.

  27. 28
    Melissa R
    January 19, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. Best book ever! I always recommend this book to anyone and everyone…it’s just that good!

  28. 29
    January 19, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    Thanks for the list of books. I just finished reading a wonderful book” Kisses from Katie” by Katie Davis. A Story of relentless Love and Redemption. A remarkable young woman a great passion for others. A friend told me about this and she let me borrow it. What a great read for anyone who enjoys reading real life.

  29. 30
    January 19, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    I love to read anything I can get my hands on. Catherine Coulter, JD Robb, John Grisham, James Patterson

  30. 31
    Kelly D.
    January 19, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    I loved The Help and The Hunger Games! Have read several Kristin Hannah books and enjoyed them all. Very much enjoyed Redeeming Love, Her Mother’s Love and Her Daughter’s Dream by Francine Rivers. Also enjoyed Life of Pi. Currently I’m reading The Shoemaker’s Wife. Kitchen House has been on my “to read” list.

  31. 32
    MJ Chenier
    January 19, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    A couple of my favorites from the past is “Bel Canto” by Ann Patchett and “Broken For You” by Stephanie Kallos

  32. 33
    January 19, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    I was fascinated by “The Gift of Fear.”

  33. 34
    January 19, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    I think The Guernsey Literary and Potato Pie Society is probably my favorite book of late. I also really enjoyed Lay That Trumpet in Our Hands.

  34. 35
    Angie Miller
    January 20, 2013 at 5:23 am

    My favorite book is The Shack.

  35. 36
    Lori Hoff
    January 20, 2013 at 8:12 am

    The Hobbit is at the top of my list, and I am currently re-reading it.

  36. 37
    Natalie M
    January 20, 2013 at 8:52 am

    The Hunger Game series is one of my favorites. The third book was a little bit of a letdown, but be warned, once you start reading you won’t be able to put them down until you’ve read all three!

  37. 38
    Theresa P
    January 20, 2013 at 10:41 am

    I just finished “How I Came to Sparkle Again” by Kaya McLaren. Love, love, loved it!! Never had read a book from this author. See she has a couple other ones out and want to get them! I hated this story to end, because I was enjoying characters and their lives so much. Basically, it’s about 3 people who are dealing with heartbreak and healing in a small Colorado ski town. Funny, touching, all at the same time!

  38. 39
    Becky Ethington
    January 20, 2013 at 11:10 am

    One of my all-time favorites is The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom. Wonderful! Heart-rending but not too schmaltzy. That’s hard to do! Thanks for the list you provided; I’ve been looking for something new. Here’s to curling up with a warm book on a frozen day!

  39. 40
    Kathy Fitz
    January 20, 2013 at 11:50 am

    Great suggestions! I read The Help – loved it!

  40. 41
    January 20, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    What a great list! It’s hard to pick just ONE favorite book. I would have to choose the Harry Potter series as my favorite; even if it isn’t a single book. The writing was great, and I remember waiting for the next book to come out and going to wait at Borders at midnight…ah. I’ve never been as excited about books as I was then-and I love to read!

  41. 42
    Barbara Watkins
    January 20, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” is one of my favorite books. My all time fav is “To Kill a Mockingbird”

  42. 43
    January 20, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    I am a first time viewer of your blog and not only found wonderful recipes but something wonderful to read. One of my favorite books is Shiloh Autumn by Brock and Bodie Thoene. I love all the books they have written.

  43. 44
    January 20, 2013 at 4:39 pm

    Besides Harry Potter and The Hunger Games, I loved reading Suzanne’s Diary to Nicholas. Right after I got married, almost 10 years ago now, I read it again with my husband. It’s a fun memory and a great book!

  44. 45
    Kathy o
    January 20, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    I love pride and prejudice! Also Anne of green gables!

  45. 46
    January 20, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    I love the Great Gatsby. I can read it again and again.

  46. 47
    Jen B.
    January 20, 2013 at 6:41 pm

    My current favorite is Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close. Great book!

  47. 48
    January 20, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    One of my favorite books is Eleni by Nicholas Gage. Thanks for the list!

  48. 49
    January 20, 2013 at 9:40 pm

    So I’m a little childish I guess, because I love Patricia C. Wrede’s “Searching For Dragons” books. Read them when I was younger, and I still love them for their good, young adult friendly material.

  49. 50
    January 20, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    I love to read. I love your blog. I love to cook. I love being a mom. And….my favorite book is The Giver. I just love it and re-read it every now and then!

  50. 51
    January 21, 2013 at 1:53 am

    This is an older book, but I just read it and really enjoyed it: The Dark Side of Heaven by Tamar Myers. Maybe not my all-time favorite book, but it was good. My all-time favorite was Memoirs of a Geisha. Best book ever!!!!
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

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