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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids


The Goldfinch – This book is amazing. So well written and beautiful. It’s way up there with The Light Between Oceans. Theo survives an accident that leaves his mother dead. With that accident, he took a painting, The Goldfinch. He finds comfort in an antique dealer, Hobie.


The Good Girl – I love psychological thrillers and this was a good one. Mia goes to a bar to meet with her on off boyfriend and meets another man who she leaves with. He holds her hostage in a cabin and her mother, along with a detective, will do anything to find her.


Be Frank With Me – A cute and quirky book about a woman and the quirky boy she ends up looking after.


You’ll Grow Out Of It – A funny read and I love that the stories aren’t long so I won’t freak out when I have to set this book down while I’m being bothered by my family to do stuff like cook or find soccer shin guards that always, always go missing.


The Weight Of Zero – I received this book from Random House. It’s the story of seventeen year-old Catherine and the devastating depression she goes through with her bipolar disorder.


Clementine – I’ve been trying to get my daughter to enjoy reading more and came across Clementine. She’s a feisty girl who has the hummingbird reading. Thumbs up!


North Pole Ninjas – The ninjas do secret acts of kindness for people. It comes with a ninja, a book, and fifty acts of kindness that you and your children can do. I received this one from Random House and my daughter was excited right away. It’s a great thing to get and do.

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids


The Night Circus – Ceila and Marco have trained for the circus all their lives. They end up falling in love but don’t realize there’s a game being played between the two of them that can only leave one of them standing.


The Girl With All The Gifts – Melanie is a young girl that is held in a cell, strapped to a wheel chair with a gun pointed at her and brought to her classroom every morning. She loves school and learning but doesn’t understand the reaction people have with her. It’s hard to say much about this book without giving away spoilers. Don’t read the reviews or it might get spoiled for you like it did with me.


Got Here As Soon As I Could – This is a great book of essays by Sarah Smiley who’s a Maine author. I especially related to it because she’s also a Navy wife. It’s a fun read.


I Am Malala – Malala was shot in the head by the Taliban for fighting for the right to get an education. Few thought she would make it but she survived such a devastating act and tells her story. Very inspiring and she’s a tremendous young woman.


Forest Feast For Kids – This is a book I grabbed from the library at the last minute and I’m glad I did. It’s a wonderful vegetarian cookbook and my daughter takes pride in being able to pick out the ones she wants to try.


The Disney Princess Cookbook – I was very hesitant about getting this for my daughter because of the way I feel about princess crap but this actually has some pretty great recipes that the hummingbird is excited about making.


Dr. Fell And The Playground Of Doom – Dr. Fell, a mysterious man, moves into the neighborhood and builds a playground to win over the kids. Three of the children are on to him and try to uncover what he’s really up to. 8-12 years old.


Shuffle, Repeat – Both Oliver and June’s moms have arranged for Oliver to drive her to school every day. They’re very different but have known each other all their lives. They end up developing a friendship but could it turn into more? 12 years and up.

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids


The Art Of Crash Landing – I really loved the style of writing in this book. Mattie, who’s pregnant, finds out about a possible inheritance from her grandmother and goes to Oklahoma with nothing to lose. She finds that there’s a mystery surrounding who her mother was when her mom was younger to the broken person she became after Mattie was born. I really like this one. It’s fun to read and a little quirky.


Between You And Me – Domestic violence is at the forefront of this book so it can be hard to read because of the content but this book consumed me. It tells two sides of a married couple’s story and the ending is unexpected.


The Dinner – Two families come to meet for dinner one night to discuss the outrageous behavior of both of their sons. It starts off as polite chatter and turns to the matter at hand. The horrific crime commited by their sons.


Before I Go To Sleep – Christine wakes up each morning not knowing who she is. There is a wall of pictures and notes in the bathroom that helps her to see her life and her marriage to her husband, Ben, who helps her fill in the pieces. Her interest is piqued about how her accident that erased her memory came about. I loved the ending to this book.


The Light Between Oceans – I suggested this book last year but I just had to do it again. Every now and then, a book will really make an impact on me and this is one of them. It’s beautifully written and has had a lasting impression. A married couple live in a lighthouse and have had trouble with infertility.

A newborn baby and a dead man wash ashore in a boat after the recent stillbirth of their child and they decide to keep the baby and raise it as their own. Years later, the consequences come crashing down on them. The Light Between Oceans is a quiet and emotionally charged book. It isn’t normally a book I would have read but I fell in love with the title when I saw it.


Tiger Eyes – I loved Judy Blume as a preteen and this was one of my favorites. Davey’s father was recently killed and her mother moves them to New Mexico. She meets a boy, Wolf, who helps her feel hopeful about her life again. 12 and up.


the-critter-clubThe Critter Club – My 7 year-old daughter likes these books about friends and their pet themed stories. 5-8 years old.


Ramona Quimby, Age 8 – I really loved this book as a kid. I read so many Beverly Clearly books, if not all of them. 7-10 years old.

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids


In A Dark, Dark, Wood – Nora is invited to a hen party for a college friend she hasn’t spoken to in years. Two days later, she wakes up in a hospital and knows somebody has been killed. Did she do it? This was a fast and fun read. While there were some suspenseful jumps, it wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be. Nevertheless, I really liked it.


The Ice Twins – Sarah loses one of her twin daughters the previous year, before she and her husband, Angus, move to a small Scottish island her husband inherited. That’s when her daughter Kirstie claims she’s actually Lydia, the daughter who died.


What Alice Forgot – Alice falls off her bike in spinning class at the gym and when she comes to, she thinks it’s 10 years earlier. She goes on to find what she lost in the last decade.


Nest – This is a beautiful book about Naomi “Chirp” who’s life changes when her mom gets sick. She finds comfort in watching wild birds. Ages 9-12 years.


Tree – A cute peekaboo book about the inhabitants in a forest. Ages 2-5 years


Henry And Mudge – I came across these books at the library and it didn’t take long for my 6 year-old to fall in love with this series. The hummingbird has read all the Henry and Mudge books at the library a few times over. Highly recommended for young readers. Ages 5-7 years.

What books would you recommend?

*Goodbye Earl

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids

I’ve been feeling restless with what I’ve been reading lately. It could just be my mood, but whatever it is, nothing is really hitting the spot.

Before I got into this book dry spell, the hummingbird and I read these books. I came across the book Dear Hot Dog and we absolutely fell in love with it. That sparked an interest in poetry for both of us and I’ve been searching out more books.

Honestly, I don’t understand a damn thing about poetry but I think I may be starting to get the gist. I read a few poems by Robert Frost and came close to having a wordgasm. But to be fair, I’m a lover of words and gasms so I have them often.


The Invention Of Wings – I LOVED the movie The Secret Life Of Bees and was going to read the book, but decided on The Invention Of Wings. In 1803, on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, she’s given ownership of 10 year-old slave, Handful “Hetty”, which Sarah is against.

This book follows the ups and downs of their lives for many years. It is so good.


Robert Frost: Selected Poems – It’s a book. About poems. I couldn’t find the exact book I have.


Suburban Haiku: Poetic Dispatches from Behind the Picket Fence – I really love this book and if you don’t have it yet, pick up a copy.


The Secret Life Of Violet Grant – I really needed this fun read. In 1964, Vivian receives a parcel from an aunt she didn’t know about. She starts digging further into this mysterious aunt’s life and sees they have more in common than she expected.



Dear Hot Dog – This is such an adorable book that is worth buying because of the many reads you’ll get out of it. It has poems about pants, toes, socks, etc. So cute. Ages 3-6.


I Haiku You – Wonderful book that has helped us with writing exercises. My 6 year-old needs my help, of course, coming up with haikus and we’ve been having fun. Ages 4-8.


Book Speak!: Poems About Books – This is a great book with poems about different parts of books. Very fun reading for the family. Ages 4-7.

Do you have some book suggestions?

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids

Thanksgiving is coming and so are my in-laws. The horror! Here are some book suggestions in case you want to hide away from crazy relatives and dive into another world that doesn’t involve an uppity mother-in-law criticizing the most trivial shit. Good luck on the day we give thanks and have to do this again next year with family that drives us crazy.

Happy Thanksgiving. The news seems to be more grim than usual and I know it’s been tough on everyone, no matter where you live. Much love!


The Winter People – Strange things are going on in West Hall, Vermont but what is it? This book goes back and forth from present day to 1908. Make sure to leave the lights on while you’re reading. Great book!


Me Before You – This book is beautiful and I fell in love with it right away. Louisa takes on a much-needed job with a quadriplegic, Will Traynor, and it is a really fantastic read.



How Groundhog’s Garden Grew – This is an adorable book about a groundhog eating food from other gardens. His friends point out that it’s not nice to help himself to other’s food so he gets help making his own garden. Ages 3-7.


Boy + Bot – This is a cute story about the friendship about a boy and a robot. Ages 2-6


The Ladybug Girl At The Beach – If only it was still beach weather! This was the first book in the ladybug girl series that we read. Lulu is going to the beach for the first time and she has mixed feeling about it. This is a great book that shows kids that each person has their own way of confronting their fears. Ages 3-6.


P. Zonka Lays An Egg – This has already gone on the hummingbird’s Christmas list because of the gorgeous illustrations and the wonderful message in the book. P. Zonka isn’t like other chickens and takes her time to enjoy the beauty around her, unlike the chickens who are laying a lot of eggs. Ages 3-8.


My Leaf Book – My 6 year-old loves collecting leaves, sticks, rocks, and everything else so she loves this book about leaves. It shows kids some of the differences of leaves and makes it fun. Ages 3-6.


Butterfly Park – A little girl moves to a new town and finds a butterfly park without any butterflies. Soon, with the help of the townspeople, everyone comes together to make a special park. Ages 3-7.

*Are You That Somebody

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids

I’m finally blowing the dust off this here blog and getting back in the habit of posting. All of the large gaps I’ve been having on here is for several reasons but one is I’ve been putting together a book of essays I’ve written over the years that I’d like to self-publish it. The reason I’m even telling you this is now I have to finish it. No excuses! I’ve also been reading more than ever, if such a thing is even possible.

Here are some books that the hummingbird and I have really liked. I hope you find a few that you’ll enjoy just as much.

Sidenote: I haven’t had any caffeine today and my brain is pissed. So, it’s paying me back by not letting me form proper sentences. For all I know, this whole post might be gibberish. Okay, more gibberish-y than usual.


The Light Between Oceans – Stop everything you’re doing and get this book right this second! I read this months ago and I still think about it most days. I love that kind of impact a book or movie has on me. Tom, a lighthouse keeper, and his wife Isabel have gone through the grief of miscarriages and a stillbirth.

Soon after, a boat comes up onto the shore with a crying infant and a dead man. I’ll leave it there because you should just read this beautifully written book. And make sure to get out the tissues. I was doing the ugliest of ugly cries while reading the last bit of the book.


You – This book is creepy as fuck.


The Girl On The Train – This book was better than I was expecting. I’m pretty tired of hearing that this book or that book is the next “Gone Girl”. Each book has its own uniqueness so saying this book is the new hot at the moment style does nothing for me. Now, get off my lawn you damn youngsters!

Rachel takes the same train every day and stops at a signal by a building with a couple that she becomes infatuated with. After noticing some things that seem off to her about the man and woman, she takes it upon herself to investigate. I actually liked this book better than the one it was compared to.


Mrs. Kennedy And Me – Clint Hill was the Secret Service Agent that was on Mrs. Kennedy’s detail and was the one who jumped onto the presidential limousine right after President Kennedy was shot in Dallas. Mr. Hill recounts his 4 years with Jackie and the Kennedy family.

I have to say with everything I’ve heard about the President and his family, Clint Hill is a true gentleman in recalling his days with the Kennedy clan, particularly the First Lady. While I love my gossip rag reading on the weekends, I love that this former agent showed class and restraint with what he revealed and what he kept to himself but that doesn’t take away from it being a pretty fascinating read.

Some Scary Ass Books About Scientology – Okay, I rarely say y’all but oh my god, ya’ll. This shit is scary. I’ve read three books about Scientology in a row and there was no way in hell I could sum it up in a few sentences so it’s getting its own post.


For the kids…


The Bumpy Little Pumpkin – My 6 year-old absolutely loves this book. We checked it out from the library a few weeks ago and have already read this several times. Little Nell gets to pick a pumpkin and decides on a little, bumpy one but her older sisters tease her about it and tell her to pick a better one.

She ends up showing that there’s beauty in everything, no matter the shape and size. Good for Little Nell. This book prompted my daughter to gain quite a collection of bumpy and imperfect pumpkins that I found very sweet. Ages preschool to 6.


This Is Not My Hat – A small fish steals a hat from a big fish and thinks he’ll be able to outsmart him. This is a cute book and the hummingbird said she found it hilarious. Ages preschool to 6.


A Treasury Of Curious George – I bought this book when the hummingbird was about 3 years-old. I needed a book to read to her while we were moving and in a hotel. This ended up becoming one of the most read books of her young library. While she doesn’t have us read it constantly like she used to, she still likes reading this one from time to time.

It’s gotten so much wear from the 8 stories in the book that we have read many times, over and over and over again. I think this would be a perfect baby shower gift or for a young child’s birthday. Ages newborn to 150.


One Grain Of Rice – A very clever girl named Rani uses her smarts to pull one over on the Raja. Her town is going hungry but the greedy Raja won’t give to those in need so the young girl comes up with a plan that will help her town in its time of need. I think this is such a gorgeously illustrated book with a strong female character and I love that there is math involved and used in a way to make it fun.

When I read this book to the bird, the higher the numbers get, the more I over exaggerate what a mouthful it is to say such high numbers, which the hummingbird finds funny and looks forward to. Rani earns one grain of rice that doubles each day for 30 days and my daughter is entertained by not only learning numbers and the way math works but also about the message this book has about greed and kindness. I highly suggest this book and I’m definitely putting it on my daughter’s Christmas wish list. Ages preschool to 8.

*James Bay

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