Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Pages of Penrose: Books of 2015

I cannot believe that 2015 is nearly over! This week is filled with the excitement of Christmas, but I am also really excited about this post! Back at the beginning of the year, I made a commitment to myself to read more.  I love reading, and wanted to find time in my day for books.  I've done that in two ways, audiobooks during my commute to and from work, and reading books or e-books.  At the beginning of the year, I made a goal of reading 15 books during 2015.  I have far exceeded that! I am so glad for the wonderful books that I came across this year, and I already am looking forward to a bunch of books that I want to get to in 2016!

Isn't that the truth??

Print or Kindle:
For the Right Reasons by Sean Lowe, Nancy French
Going Off Script by Giuliana Rancic
Bridesmaid Lotto by Rachel Astor
The Divorce Papers by Susan Rieger
The Grownup by Gillian Flynn

Can you Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella
Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella
The Undomestic Goddess by Sophie Kinsella
Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty
The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty
The Perfect Letter by Chris Harrison
Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella
Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult
11th Hour by James Patterson, Maxine Paetro
The Search by Nora Roberts
The Witness by Nora Roberts
14th Deadly Sin by James Patterson, Maxine Paetro
Invisible by James Patterson, David Ellis
What I did for Love by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Now You See Her by James Patterson, Michael Ledwidge
Kill Me if you Can by James Patterson, Marshall Karp

Pages of Penrose Review: The Divorce Papers by Susan Rieger

I am so excited about this book review!  This is a somewhat long book, but mainly because it is written entirely as correspondence between the characters.  I had the perfect opportunity for long hours by myself to finish up this book over the weekend...

What you don't see in this photo of the Detroit airport is that it was -4 degrees outside! There were about 15 birds flying around inside the concourse because it was too cold for them outside!  I cozied up near a window view of snow falling...

Flights, layovers, a Gingerbread Tea Latte, and a great book...I also may have repeated this exact moment on the way home, those darn lattes are just so good ;)

I was surprised to learn that this was Susan Rieger's debut novel.  I found the characters of The Divorce Papers witty, intelligent, and the plot of the story curiously exciting.  As I mentioned before, the book is written entirely as correspondence, made up of inter-office memos, letters to the other law firm, invitations, personal notes, and emails.  I really liked this aspect of the book, and thought that it added to the interest of the book.  Unlike a typical novel, I felt myself keep turning the pages because I could not wait to see what happened next, not just turning pages trying to end at the start of a new chapter.

Although I have an entirely different career and family than Sophie Diehl, a bright, young lawyer who typically works on criminal cases, I found moments of her life easy to relate to.  Trying to make a name for herself as a young professional, the playful exchanges with her best friend, complicated relationships with her parents, clients, love interests.  These are all things that many 20-somethings either deal with, or have a friend dealing with, on a regular basis.

Rieger did a wonderful job developing the characters, playing off of stereotypes, entertaining us with the plight of the high-end divorce client that this plot surrounds.  As long as you like the unique correspondence format, I highly recommend this book to other readers!

*I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. All opinions are my own.

Have you read The Divorce Papers? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below!

Read more about my book reviews here, and friend me on Goodreads to see what's next!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Plates of Penrose: Red Velvet Cookies

If you or someone you know loves red velvet as much as my husband does, you will want to make these cookies! 

I took inspiration from this recipe that I found on Pinterest, but changed it a little because I do not like rolling cookies in sugar.  These. were. so. good.

Follow me for more ideas on Pinterest here!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Pages of Penrose Review: The Perfect Letter by Chris Harrison

I did not know what to expect from The Perfect Letter, but I have been a fan of Chris Harrison/The Bachelor franchise for years so I wanted to see how he was at being an author.  My first impression was that the plot was another mimic of the movie Sweet Home Alabama, but the further I read the more I realized that Harrison is a very talented writer. There was so much storyline and depth packed so much into this novel.  The twists and details of the story really build on each other, and I highly recommend this book if you are looking for a love story.


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Philanthropy & Penrose: Cyber Monday Deals!

I'm pretty much bursting with excitement for our Angel Tree child. This little boy scored so many gifts on Cyber Monday!  Check out all of the loot that we were able to get for him off his wish list, thanks to Cyber Monday deals from Crazy8 and Amazon...

What we know about him....He's from our hometown, and he's a 7 year old little boy that loves action figures, especially Superman!

Now, I like to pride myself on my bargain-shopping skills, but I am so impressed with all that we could find for him.  I used the code CYBERWK20 on Amazon to get an additional 20% off the jacket, sneakers, socks & undies, and got at least 50% off the action figures and books there as well.  We also have Amazon Prime so all items ship for free!  The rest of the clothing items are from Crazy8, which was having a great cyber sale and emailed me coupon code for an additional 20% off my purchase with free shipping.

Total, we purchased everything above for under $160.00.  The shoes and jacket alone would have cost almost that much!  I am so excited to start receiving the packages in the mail so that I can get them all wrapped up :)