The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

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source: personal copy
title: The Girl on the Train
author: Paula Hawkins (twitter)
pages: 323
genre: mystery/psychological thriller
published: 2015
first line: There is a pile of clothing on the side of the train tracks.
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4 out of 5 stars

blurb:
EVERY DAY THE SAME
Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning and night. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. Jess and Jason, she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

UNTIL TODAY
And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel goes to the police. But is she really as unreliable as they say? Soon she is deeply entangled not only in the investigation but in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

my thoughts:
Today is the perfect day to sit at my computer and write up a post about my latest read. The snow is falling outside as Blizzard 2017 is in effect. I hope those in its path are staying safe and warm. Having a snow day, I’m home with my family, the crock-pot is on and there’s something to be said about staying cozy inside in your pajamas during the snow fall.

Onto my review….
Alternately narrated by three characters, Rachel, Megan and Anna, The Girl on the Train had me wondering from page one. Rachel is a thirty something alcoholic divorcee who is “the girl on the train”. Having lost her job a few months ago because of her drinking problem, she continues to take the train daily pretending she is going to work so that her roommate does not find out. She is somewhat obsessed with her ex-husband Tom who left her for another woman, Anna.

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200 Fun Things to Crochet

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source: free copy courtesy of St. Martin’s Press
title: 200 Fun Things to Crochet: Decorative Flowers, Leaves, Bugs, Butterflies, and More!
published: St. Martin’s Griffin (February 7, 2017)
genre: crochet/crafting
rated: 5 out of 5
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blurb:
If you ever find yourself wondering what to crochet next, then just open this book, and you’re guaranteed to find the answer. 200 Fun Things to Crochet is an irresistible collection of cute little crochet projects for all levels of ability. Containing a mix of beautiful projects inspired by nature―crochet flowers, birds, bugs, leaves, and even sea creatures―as well as a collection of charming floral squares, you’ll want to pick up your hook, sort through your yarn stash, and get started right away.

The 200 projects are quick to make, use hardly any yarn, and are perfect as stylish embellishments, to give away as a gift or to keep for yourself!
200 Fun Things to Crochet combines the work of four bestselling designers:

LESLEY STANFIELD is the author of 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet and 75 Birds, Butterflies, & Little Beasts to Knit & Crochet.

BETTY BARNDEN is the author of 75 Floral Blocks to Crochet.

JESSICA POLKA is the author of 75 Seashells, Fish, Coral & Colorful Marine Life to Knit & Crochet.

KRISTIN NICHOLAS is the author of 50 Sunflowers to Knit, Crochet & Felt.

my thoughts:
Happy Saturday everyone. Spring is in the air here with unseasonably warm weather this past week. Today I thought I’d share my thoughts on a crochet pattern book that has recently become a favorite.
200 Fun Things to Crochet: Decorative Flowers, Leaves, Bugs, Butterflies, and More! has a nice variety of crochet patterns all inspired by nature. The patterns are divided into sections for flowers, plants, sea life, critters and blocks. The section titled “Flower Garden” has patterns for a variety of pretty flowers like Chrysanthemum, Narcissus, Marigold and Forget-Me-Not. There is also a special section of various beautiful Sunflower patterns.

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The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom

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source: purchased
title: The Five People You Meet in Heaven
author: Mitch Albom/ Twitter
published: Hachette Books (April 7, 2003)
pages: 196
first line: This is a story about a man named Eddie and it begins at the end, with Eddie dying in the sun.
rated: 4 1/2 out of 5 stars
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blurb:
Eddie is a grizzled war veteran who feels trapped in a meaningless life of fixing rides at a seaside amusement park. His days are a dull routine of work, loneliness, and regret.

Then, on his 83rd birthday, Eddie dies in a tragic accident, trying to save a little girl from a falling cart. He awakens in the afterlife, where he learns that heaven is not a lush Garden of Eden, but a place where your earthly life is explained to you by five people. These people may have been loved ones or distant strangers. Yet each of them changed your path forever.

One by one, Eddie’s five people illuminate the unseen connections of his earthly life. As the story builds to its stunning conclusion, Eddie desperately seeks redemption in the still-unknown last act of his life: Was it a heroic success or a devastating failure The answer, which comes from the most unlikely of sources, is as inspirational as a glimpse of heaven itself.

In The Five People You Meet in Heaven, Mitch Albom gives us an astoundingly original story that will change everything you’ve ever thought about the afterlife–and the meaning of our lives here on earth. With a timeless tale, appealing to all, this is a book that readers of fine fiction, and those who loved Tuesdays with Morrie, will treasure.

my thoughts:
The Five People You Meet in Heaven is one of my daughter’s favorite books. After she read it in school she raved to me about it and insisted that I read it too. I read this one quickly and now I can also add it to my list of favorite books as well.

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Mandalas to Crochet: 30 Great Patterns by Haafner Linssen

msource: free copy courtesy of St. Martin’s Griffin
title: Mandalas to Crochet: 30 Great Patterns
designer: Haafner Linssen
published: St. Martin’s Griffin (March 15, 2016)
rated: 5 out of 5 stars
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blurb:
Crocheted mandalas are having a moment! And it’s no wonder the lovely mandala is in vogue: one evening is often enough to begin and finish something eye-catching. Many crocheters make mandalas as a meditative activity, while others love them simply for the wonderful opportunities they offer for mixing colors and stitch textures. A new take on traditional shapes, like granny squares or hexagons, these attractive crocheted circles are causing a real buzz in the crochet community.

Included are complete written and charted directions for a variety of types of circular designs, plus a range of creative techniques and ideas to make yours stand out from the crowd. With full patterns and inspiring photos, a review of crochet techniques, a discussion of materials, colors, finishing techniques, and lots of project ideas including bags, shawls, blankets, and pillows, this book guarantees many hours of happy mandala-making.

my thoughts:
Mandalas to Crochet: 30 Great Patterns by Haafner Linssen has become an instant favorite. This one has thirty gorgeous mandala patterns, crisp photos, clear instructions and really is a visual delight.

Designer Haafner Linssen says “In Hinduism and Buddhism, mandalas have a ritual role, representing Buddha or even the universe. The different parts of such a mandala have a symbolic meaning. For instance, the outer circle often symbolizes wisdom in Buddhism”

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Every Which Way Crochet Borders by Edie Eckman

crochet

source: ARC courtesy of NetGalley
title: Every Which Way Crochet Borders: 139 Patterns for Customized Edgings by Edie Eckman
published: January 24, 2017
pages: 224
rated: 5 out of 5 stars
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blurb:
Step-by-step instructions and symbol charts put these 100 creative new border designs within reach for beginning and advanced crocheters alike. If you’re ready to chart your own crocheted course, Edie Eckman offers plenty of helpful design advice, including how to choose an appropriate border for each project and how to incorporate an element from the main stitch pattern into a new border design. She then explains, with the help of close-up photos, how the same pattern can have dramatically different results depending on the weight of the yarn. With each pattern diagrammed to approach in both rounds and rows, Every Which Way Crochet Borders is an inventive and invaluable resource.

my thoughts:
What a fantastic resource Every Which Way Crochet Borders: 139 Patterns for Customized Edgings by Edie Eckman for crocheters is!

The patterns are clear and varied, the photos are crisp and detailed and the book itself is well organized. The edge patterns all have diagrams as well, which is a wonderful touch. For a crocheter looking for nice border patterns, this book is an absolute gem. I know personally that when I am looking for a border pattern to give my project a finishing touch it can be hard to find a good one. The edging patterns here are unique and varied, there are plenty of ideas.

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