Bookmiser

The Invincible Miss Cust by Penny Haw

Aleen Cust was born an English noblewoman in 1868 but developed a love for animals and a strong desire to be educated and become a veterinary surgeon. This ambition was unheard of in a woman, and it resulted in her mother and her siblings shunning her for life. Despite her family’s hatred of her desire to be educated and many societal obstacles , Aleen successfully trained in Scotland but was prohibited from qualifying because of her sex. She persisted in the field working with an Irish vet, Willie Byrne, with whom she developed an intense love relationship. She practiced veterinary science for 22 years before she was granted her diploma. Where would women be today if not for the brave, independent women who paved the path?

The Invincible Miss Cust by Penny Haw, (List Price: $16.99, Sourcebooks Landmark, 9781728257709, October 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Sugar and Salt by Susan Wiggs

I so enjoyed reading this book. The story centers around Margie Slinas/Margo Salton and jumps from present to past to see how Margie evolved into a first rate barbecue chef named Margot. She decides to open a barbecue restaurant and names it Salt. Margot shares the building with a bakery named Sugar. She begins a relationship with one of the owners, Jerome. As their relationship progresses and Margot starts to fall in love with Jerome, she know it’s time to tell him about her past as Marjorie Salinas. While some of the parts of the book were a bit rough, it was a great story filled with love and redemption.

Sugar and Salt by Susan Wiggs, (List Price: $27.99, William Morrow, 9780062914224, July 2022)

Reviewed by Pam Crawford, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

This Story Will Change by Elizabeth Crane

“I thought we were going to grow old together, take care of each other.” The author Elizabeth Crane has been married for fifteen years and one day her husband tells her he isn’t happy. We ride with her on this winding story to see every turn in their lives and how it ended with this terrible pain. Truth is in every word of this memoir. Who doesn’t plan and hope for a happy ending when beginning a marriage? Elizabeth Crane reveals the honest painful truth that can be at the end of a relationship. Never has an ending of a marriage been told with more honest and heartbreaking TRUTH. She gets a new tattoo with just the word love. and writes “I still believe in it. sometimes like Santa. but I do.” Everyone who either hopes for a marriage or been in love and lost or longs for a partner could feel much of the truth in this too painfully unforgettable wise tale.

This Story Will Change by Elizabeth Crane, (List Price: 26, Counterpoint, 9781640094789, August 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Bookmiser, Inc. in Marietta, Georgia

Back to the Prairie by Melissa Gilbert

“There is no better pillow than one filled with hope and dreams.” writes Melissa Gilbert (the Little House on the Prairie Laura Ingalls Wilder) as she relates the latest years of her story of living through the COVID-19 pandemic. The reader will travel with Melissa as she transitions from dyed red hair and designer wear to granny gray hair and comfortable clothes. We meet her family and her husband Timothy Busfield as they decide on buying and living in a Catskills area ramshackle cabin/cottage (cabbage) and the struggles and work that go into their new home. We experience her pain and surgeries and her happiness with nature, her chickens, her cooking, and her new life. We all relive the lockdown fears and worries with the pandemic with the day-to-day reality of our situation and celebrate the vaccines and the freedom after our shots. Back to the Prairie will inspire all readers to evolve into our true selves and the happiness and comfort in finding who we are naturally meant to be.

Back to the Prairie by Melissa Gilbert, Timothy Busfield (foreword), (List Price: $28.00, Gallery Books, 9781982177188, May 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Acts of Violet by Margarita Montimore

Subatomic super particles, string theory, parallel worlds, metaphysical, OBE—out-of-body-experience and different dimensions…. not many authors take their readers on such a tale as this paranormal story of a magician disappearing during a performance. Violet Volk disappeared a decade ago right in front of her audience and hasn’t been seen since. Her sister Sasha and Violet’s followers are still looking for answers. Is she alive? Was she really a psychic spy for the CIA? Does she exist in another dimension? Readers will not be able to put down this book as they read about the family situations and the magic that entwines this story.

Acts of Violet by Margarita Montimore, (List Price: $27.99, Flatiron Books, 9781250815064, July 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin

Gabrielle Zevin has written a novel about amazing game developers who the reader will come to know over thirty years. When Sam Masur and Sadie Green meet as children, they become fast intimate friends when playing video games, and as young adults they craft the game Ichigo. Besides seeing the artistry and genius built into designing these intricate and captivating games, we live their lives as they grow and experience loneliness and love, pain and comfort, success and devastating pain and loss. This is ultimately an unforgettable tale of lives finding love and connection in this high tech age and the collaboration in building the worlds of video games.

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin, (List Price: 28, Knopf, 9780593321201, July 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Booksmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Happily Ever Island by Crystal Cestari

Madison is a full-on Disney nerd. When she wins a trip to a new, fully immersive Disney vacation full of cosplay and magical Disney magic, she’s beyond excited. But when her girlfriend breaks up with her, she convinces her best friend to come instead. Lanie is not a Disney fan. She’s not a hater, she just is way less familiar than Madison. But she throws caution to the wind and goes anyway. Hopefully they’ll both get their Happily Ever After. This story was fun and crazy and this Disney nerd enjoyed every minute.

Happily Ever Island by Crystal Cestari, (List Price: $18.99, Disney-Hyperion, 9781368075473, June 2022)

Reviewed by Jennifer Jones, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

The Cherry Robbers by Sarai Walker

Do you believe in ghosts? The Cherry Robbers is about so much more than the haunting that frightens on every page. In 1950 Iris Chapel has five sisters and lives in a Victorian mansion isolated from much of the world. Tragedy after tragedy befalls every sister after they find love as their mother has predicted. But this story is about so much more than the apparitions that live with this family. Through Iris Chapel/Sylvia Wren, the reader will experience sadness and loss surely but find art and love and sexuality as an essential part of this haunting story. My prediction is that the reader will never truly leave the world of the Chapel sisters.

The Cherry Robbers by Sarai Walker, (List Price: $27.99, Harper, 9780358251873, May 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

She Gets the Girl by Rachael Lippincott

Alex and Molly have grown up in two very different worlds, but they have one big thing in common: neither has any friends. But they’re both starting at the same college and both are determined to change, though for very different reasons. Alex’s girlfriend says Alex is afraid to let anyone in and won’t confess her true feelings. Molly has always been a big ball of anxiety, but has had a four year crush on a girl from her high school who just so happens to be going to the same college. Molly and Alex dislike each other, but they need the other to reach their goals. Overall, this was a very fun, sweet story that simultaneously deals with some heavy issues. I loved it!

She Gets the Girl by Rachael Lippincott, (List Price: $18.99, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 9781534493797,  April 2022)

Reviewed by Jennifer Jones, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle

Imagine the tragic cancer death of your mother when she is your best friend—the real love of your life…and then imagine you find her alive again and she is happy and healthy and only thirty years old. This happens when Katy travels to Italy on a trip she and her mother Carol planned. How could this be? Katy is utterly devastated when her mom dies and she doesn’t know how she can go on with life without her. Rebecca Serle’s description of the beauty of Postano’s cliffs and ocean views makes the reader join Katy and taste the amazing food at every Italian meal. The sudden appearance of her mother Carol as a young vibrant woman is shocking. Is it really her mother in her youth? Is Katy so heartbroken that she just imagines it? This unforgettable love story will leave the reader thinking about family bonds and wondering how one would react to such an event. It is a story that will stay with you long after the last page.

One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle, (List Price: $27.00, Atria Books, 9781982166793,  March 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Funny Farm by Laurie Zaleski

Once you open this book, this story will never leave your heart. Laurie Zalenski tells of her mother’s love as the family escapes an abusive husband and father and attempts life with zero money. As the family scrapes by, they adopt and care for others including neglected animals. The love of people and animals shine on every page as the tale leads to the Funny Farm and the 600 abused and neglected animals that thrive on the New Jersey farm. You will fall in love with Laurie, the many animals, and the book as you plan your trip to see for yourself the Funny Farm.

Funny Farm by Laurie Zaleski, (List Price: $27.99, St. Martin’s Press, 97812502728366, February 2022)

Reviewed by Nancy Pierce from Bookmiser, Inc. in Marietta, Georgia


Golden Boys by Phil Stamper

Stamper brings his trademark storytelling, full of heart and magic, to his story of 4 boys and one incredible summer. Sal, Gabriel, Heath, and Reese are the best of friends, but they’re all headed their separate ways for the summer. Sal is headed to DC to intern for a senator. Gabriel is headed to Boston to work for a nonprofit and save the trees. Heath is headed to Daytona to work with his aunt and cousin while his parents work out their divorce. And Reese is off to Paris for a summer design school. They’ve always been inseparable, so how will they make it through the summer?


Golden Boys by Phil Stamper, (List Price: $18.99, Bloomsbury YA, 9781547607372, February 2022)

Reviewed by Jennifer Jones, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia


Pride, Prejudice, and Peril by Katie Oliver

Phaedra works as an English professor at the local college, lecturing her students about Jane Austen, while wearing garb from the time period. When a reality show starts filming in town called Who Wants to Marry Mr. Darcy?, she’s hired to consult. But when her best friend’s new husband is murdered (they own the estate where the reality show is being filmed), Phaedra has to solve the mystery before her friend is charged with murder. The first in the new Jane Austen Tea Society Mystery series, Austenites will see plenty of similarities to their favorite author’s stories.

Pride, Prejudice, and Peril by Katie Oliver, (List Price: $8.99, Berkley, 9780593337615, December 2021)

Reviewed by Jennifer Jones, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Medusa by Jessie Burton

Burton’s feminist retelling of Medusa is filled with wonderful illustrations, and a story with which we’re all somewhat familiar. Medusa has been exiled to a remote island with her two sisters. But they are immortal and have wings, so Medusa’s existence is fairly lonely. But one day, a beautiful boy named Perseus arrives by boat and he and Medusa strike up a friendship, talking while each is on the other side of a giant rock. They each find themselves heartbroken, telling the other their story.

Medusa by Jessie Burton, (List Price: $19.99, Bloomsbury YA, 9781547607594, January 2022)

Reviewed by Jennifer Jones, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

Absence of Mallets by Kate Carlisle

The ninth in the Fixer Upper series has Shannon and her crew plugging away on the tiny home village for veterans. Shannon is starting up a new class for women to learn construction and Mac has a new group of writers coming in for a retreat. But this new group is…something else. They’re nothing but trouble from the start. Fans of this series will love to read more about this crazy cast of characters.

Absence of Mallets by Kate Carlisle, (List Price: $8.99, Berkley, 9780593201336, December 2021)

Reviewed by Jennifer Jones, Bookmiser in Marietta, Georgia

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