the beach and some books

Well, I've been spending lots of time outside and at the beach and basically everywhere but my computer.  And then I decided to take the day off today, and Michelle and I met for lunch and we laughed so hard that I'm fairly certain we disturbed fellow diners.  But, I'm back.


I'm joining Steph and Jana today and sharing some books.  First up is Weekend in Paris, by Robyn Sisman.

Molly Clearwater had always wanted to escape the confines of her small-town upbringing to make a splash as a career woman in London. But somehow, working as a low-level assistant for the boorish Malcolm Figg wasn't nearly as fulfilling as she had hoped-until Malcolm offered her a "perk"-a free weekend business trip to Paris. She's ecstatic until she discovers that Malcolm's idea of "business" isn't exactly the same as hers. Horrified, Molly storms out of the office.  With nothing else to lose, she impulsively boards a train to Paris, intent on treating herself to a long weekend in the City of Light.  Within moments of stepping onto the cobblestoned streets of Paris, Molly is swept up in an adventure that defies her imagination. From infiltrating a conference in a Cleopatra wig to sharing her deepest secret with a complete stranger, Molly's weekend away from her troubles turns into a dizzying voyage of passion and self-discovery, transforming her absolutely...

I judged it by its cover and picked up because it looked like it would be a cute, fun little read.

I hated it.

It was sleazy and predictable and I had to force myself to finish it, and I think I need to raise my standards a bit.

I also read Open House, by Elizabeth Berg.  

Samantha's husband has left her, and after a spree of overcharging at Tiffany's, she settles down to reconstruct a life for herself and her eleven-year-old son. Her eccentric mother tries to help by fixing her up with dates, but a more pressing problem is money. To meet her mortgage payments, Sam decides to take in boarders. The first is an older woman who offers sage advice and sorely needed comfort; the second, a maladjusted student, is not quite so helpful. A new friend, King, an untraditional man, suggests that Samantha get out, get going, get work. But her real work is this: In order to emerge from grief and the past, she has to learn how to make her own happiness. In order to really see people, she has to look within her heart. And in order to know who she is, she has to remember--and reclaim--the person she used to be, long before she became someone else in an effort to save her marriage. Open House is a love story about what can blossom between a man and a woman, and within a woman herself.

I had my doubts throughout the first few chapters, but once I got into it a bit more, I really enjoyed it.  I love Elizabeth Berg's writing style and descriptions, and the quirky characters were so endearing.  I'd recommend this one.

I started Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert last week and I think I'm going to have to give up on it. I bought a few books at a yard sale down the shore this weekend, but I'm all ears for your suggestions!


"Juliet," by Anne Fortier. She also wrote "The Lost Sisterhood," which I also liked, but I slightly prefer "Juliet."
Faith said…
Haha, that does sound like it would be a good read. I mean, how can you go wrong with Paris in the title?

Ahh, your pictures make me crave the beach! I can't wait to get back :)

I need some new book recommendations too so I'm going to check back on this post to see what others recommend.
rooth said…
Super jealous of your beach time. If you like crime / suspense, try the Peter Ash series by Nicholas Petrie
I recently absolutely loved Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Beartown, and This is How it Always Is. <--especially that last one. So awesome. Jealous of all your beach time --- enjoy!!!
Jenny said…
Sorry the books weren't any good, but what a pretty beach! I'd take the beach over the computer any day! :) And have you read, It Ends With Us?
Nadine Lynn said…
Open House sounds interesting. Stinks the other book wasn't any good. You are making me super jealous with your beach pictures!!!!
Audrey Louise said…
Well poop- both of these sounded promising. I suppose I will avoid Weekend in Paris since it was a dud for you! Open House sounds interesting, though!
I couldn't get into Eat, Pray, Love. It felt... pretentious.
Kelly said…
Ugh, The Weekend in Paris book, I should read it just so I can hate on it. Having living in Paris and found it not quite so magical & romantic as portrayed in print & on screen I'm constantly bitter at books that continue to perpetuate that illusion...
Sorry the books weren't any good. Hopefully the views and sunshine made up for it. I'll take all the beach days! Beautifully Candid
Rebecca Jo said…
Open House sounds nice enough. I bet I can predict it all but thats how usually those books go.
Hope the transition of being back to reality isnt too awful.
I would have totally picked up Weekend in Paris based on its cover, too! Guess I'll be sure to avoid it!
I would have been sucked in by the cover of A Weekend In Paris too, so I'm glad for your honest review! Open House sounds like a cute read though, so I'm definitely adding that to my list!
Lindsay Bononno said…
Nightingale by Kristin Hannah and The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls are my all-time favorite books. The Glass Castle is also in production as a movie starring Brie Larson and Woody Harrelson!
Super jealous of your beach time and extra day off! That Weekend in Paris book is definitely a book I would have scooped up by title and cover alone. Bummer that it was a flop <3
Green Fashionista
Nicole said…
That sky and that beach! Yes please! I enjoy Elizabeth Berg's writing too. I don't read her books often though. I have one on my shelf to get to. Maybe a good summer read :) Stopping by from SMYB
Steph Hartley said…
I bought Eat, Pray, Love recently and I've heard such mixed opinions on it that I'm really not sure whether or not to give it a go!

Steph -
The beach looks amazing! Do you have a house at the shore?
The beach is always good for the soul as is some laughter and fun with friends.
I'm sorry the first one was a let down. Next time, DNF it! No reason to waste time on bad reads, right? I've definitely gotten better at putting down books that just are not working for me!

I haven't read an Elizabeth Berg book in a long time. I like her stuff.

I only liked the Eat part of Eat Pray Love and only because of the description of the food. I don't care for the whining throughout.
I'm totally jealous of your beach views! It's cold and overcast here in Sydney at the moment and I'm wrapped in a blanket!

That book sounds like a good one! It's always nice when you have doubts at the start but then it really hooks you in!
Jenny Evans said…
I finished Eat, Pray, Love and enjoyed it for the wit and humor in the writing. I just tried hard not to think about the fact that these were real people and this actually happened.
I have never had any interest in reading Eat Pray Love. It just doesn't strike me as my kind of book.
Oh to live near a beach! So lucky, it's gorgeous! Open House sounds great. I understand. I feel like there are fluffy books and then there are ridiculous ones. We just all have to find our own lines. :) XO - Alexandra

Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things
Anything by Beatriz Williams! You won't regret it/