Rosepoint Reviews – June Recap—The Heat is On!

Rosepoint Reviews-June Recap

I pretty much spend most of my time in the gardens in June, particularly the veggie garden. And with new food possibilities from Amazon also ordered a mushroom block (I chose Oyster mushrooms) and spouts—so many from broccoli sprouts to mixed salad sprouts and alfalfa sprouts. They are fun to see grow though I’d admit to some intensive work—sprouts have to be rinsed every 3-4 hours until ready for harvest. My broccoli spouts were a winner. Now I’m trying salad sprouts.

So far, the garden has yielded some sweet peas and beans along with the first yellow squash. This year also, my daughter introduced me to “grow bags” which led me to start some seed potatoes. Never too old to learn something new! All to say, I guess that June is not a big reading/reviewing month for me. BTW, so far the mushroom block is a dud. Not sure what I did wrong as it was supposed to have between four to five “flushes.” (My daughter got five.)

Again, I relied heavily on the CE for his reviews, so much of my time spent otherwise. We did read or listen to nineteen books in June, most from NetGalley as I’m working on the 500 badge, now up to a count of 472 and my ratio continues to be 95%.

The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly--audiobook cover Code of Courage by Janice Cantore A Home for the Lost by Sharon Maas Pryor & Cummings by Rod Pennington Death by Didgeridoo by Barbara Venkataraman The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth audiobook banner The Sea Nurses by Kate Eastham Bayou Book Thief by Ellen Byron The Last Paladin by P T Deutermann The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner The Girl from Bologna by Siobhan Daiko Mercury Pictures Presents by Anthony Marra What the River of the Cherokee Did Not Tell by James Short Dark Sacred Night by Michael Connelly Joan by Katherine J Chen No Strangers Here by Carlene O'Connor What She Found by Robert Dugoni   The Physicists' Daughter by Mary Anna Evans

 

The Lincoln Lawyer vs Audiobook by Michael Connelly
Code of Courage by Janice Cantore (a CE review)
A Home for the Lost by Sharon Maas
Pryor & Cummings by Rod Pennington
Death by Didgeridoo by Barbara Venkataraman
The Good Sister by Sally Hepworth (audiobook)
The Sea Nurses by Kate Eastham (a CE review)
The Last Paladin by P T Deutermann (a CE review)
Bayou Book Thief by Ellen Byron (book tour)
The Physicists’ Daughter by Mary Anna Evans (book tour)
The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner (audiobook)
The Girl from Bologna by Siobhan Daiko (a CE review
Mercury Pictures Presents by Anthony Marra (a CE review)
What the River of the Cherokee Did Not Tell by James Short
Dark Sacred Night by Michael Connelly (audiobook)
Joan by Katherine J Chen (a CE review)
No Strangers Here by Carlene O’Connor (a CE review)
What She Found by Robert Dugoni
Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

 

Reading Challenges

Reading Challenges

I’m still struggling with my challenges—I’m sure I’ll catch up some time in July when it’s too hot to be outside. My challenges for 2022 are all listed and linked in the widget column on the right. You can check out the progress of my challenges by clicking the Reading Challenges page. I’m now at 54% of the Goodreads Challenge of 180 books at 98. Seems like we’ve had a spate of historical fiction books this year, given that is one of the CEs favorite genres. I’ve come to rely heavily on audiobooks, I can do those while gardening!

Spring Challenge

Did you check your Kindle Spring Challenge? I did make gold.  (A Gold Reader is achieved upon reading any 75 days during the Challenge. Also notes I unlocked 12 of 16 achievements. The challenge ended today.

A big month for us, we drove with our son to visit our daughter at her new (to her) home in southern Illinois. They have five acres there she will use for personal benefit, but additionally wants to start posting about their farm (Red Barn Farm) and the progress they are making with planting. So far, she is trying to do her “shorts” on her cell phone. I just got a new laptop and am busy trying to make the transition but utilize Photoshop for graphics and can’t download my program to the laptop. I may end up giving her the laptop and keeping my old desktop—impossible though to lug around on trips. Also, we celebrated the CEs birthday as well as our son (born on the same day). Maybe with the heat things will begin to slow down.

How was your June? Are you experiencing record-breaking heat? I want to welcome my new followers as always and thank those who continue to read, like, share, and comment. Please let me know if you saw something above that got your interest and have a safe, sane July.

©2022 V Williams V Williams

Have a great weekend!

Before We Were Yours: A Novel by Lisa Wingate – #Audiobook Review – #TBT

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

Goodreads Choice Award Winner

Rosepoint Publishing: Five Stars 5 stars

Book Blurb:

Memphis, 1939. Twelve-year-old Rill Foss and her four younger siblings live a magical life aboard their family’s Mississippi River shantyboat. But when their father must rush their mother to the hospital one stormy night, Rill is left in charge – until strangers arrive in force. Wrenched from all that is familiar and thrown into a Tennessee Children’s Home Society orphanage, the Foss children are assured that they will soon be returned to their parents – but they quickly realize the dark truth. At the mercy of the facility’s cruel director, Rill fights to keep her sisters and brother together in a world of danger and uncertainty.

Aiken, South Carolina, present day. Born into wealth and privilege, Avery Stafford seems to have it all: a successful career as a federal prosecutor, a handsome fiancé, and a lavish wedding on the horizon. But when Avery returns home to help her father weather a health crisis, a chance encounter leaves her with uncomfortable questions and compels her to take a journey through her family’s long-hidden history, on a path that will ultimately lead either to devastation or to redemption.

Based on one of America’s most notorious real-life scandals – in which Georgia Tann, director of a Memphis-based adoption organization, kidnapped and sold poor children to wealthy families all over the country – Lisa Wingate’s riveting, wrenching, and ultimately uplifting tale reminds us how, even though the paths we take can lead to many places, the heart never forgets where we belong. 

My Review:

Taken from headlines back in Memphis, Tennessee 1939, this audiobook gripped me quickly and never let go. Yes, I’m probably the last to see this title, but so glad I did. My mother ended up in an orphanage in the late 20s when my grandmother and grandfather split; the Depression, the crushing poverty, and no way to care for two young daughters. So, while my mother didn’t have this horrendous experience, her’s was not pleasant either.

The storyline narration splits between 1939 and present-day Aiken, South Carolina.

It is essentially the true account of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society orphanage and Georgia Tann, who in today’s dollars, made a ton of money selling children from the facility. Not just orphans, however, as some were literally stolen from their parents for the bounty they would bring.

Babies were a hot commodity and Tann found a market with well-to-do couples unable to have their own. Then she found further avenues of income by squeezing them further for various trumped-up charges and fees.

The cruel life the children lead in the orphanage is heart-stopping. Tann apparently had cultivated major connections, including judges, politicians, and police who literally turned a blind eye to what was happening.

Historical POV is told through twelve-year-old Rill Foss, the oldest of five children from a family living on the Mississippi River in a shanty, a river houseboat. They are taken from the boat following a nighttime emergency trip to the hospital by their mother and father. Rill’s story is poignant, riveting, heartbreaking, and suspenseful.

In present day Aiken, Avery Stafford is caught up in the family drama of an elderly woman and makes a shocking discovery.

I definitely preferred the voice of Rill—her story captivating—her strength, resolve admiral. She had loving parents and had been well taught but was far too trusting. Avery is more difficult to warm up to—rich, her narrow scope of view rested on the well-to-do, educated, classed gentry. Once she got into the investigation; would not let it go.

There were a few things I didn’t quite understand (the adult sisters hanging onto their secret) and the conclusion that managed a touch of romance (obvious which way it was going), and really—he’s a nice guy and all but wondered how long the nice guy part would last over her kind of privileged background.

Yes, I got the audiobook from my lovely library and thought the narrators did an outstanding job. My heart rose and sank throughout, hanging on every word, until I was emotionally exhausted. I kept thinking of my mother—and understood again—why she was so paranoid about losing my brother and I when our dad left. Thank you, mom.

Book Details:

Genre: Fiction Sagas, Literary Fiction, Historical Fiction
Publisher: Random House Audio
ASIN: B06Y1MGNL9
Listening Length: 14 hrs 29 mins
Narrator:  Emily RankinCatherine Taber
Publication Date: June 6, 2017
Source: Local Library (Audiobook Selections)
Title Link: Before We Were Yours [Amazon]

Add to Goodreads

The Author: Lisa Wingate is a former journalist, an inspirational speaker, and the bestselling author of more than twenty novels. Her work has won or been nominated for many awards, including the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize, the Oklahoma Book Award, the Carol Award, the Christy Award, and the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award. Wingate lives in the Ouachita Mountains of southwest Arkansas.

©2022 V Williams V Williams

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