Young Adult

Remember That Time I Met RA Salvatore? Yeah, I’m Finally Getting to a Book.

Remember That Time I Met RA Salvatore? Yeah, I’m Finally Getting to a Book.

You remember that time, right?


Yeppers, that’s Salvatore himself.

I’ve been wanting to get to a book but I’m so intimidated by their thickness.

But I found one!


The Stowaway, co written with his son Geno.

It’s YA. Prolly older middle grade too.

So, I’ve just started. I’ll keep you posted.

Did I mention pirates??

Books Tea Parties

Fancy Nancy Aspiring Artist Tea Party

I love all things Fancy Nancy because she and I are Francophiles. Every situation is made better by speaking French, non?

We recently hosted a birthday party for another little Francophile.  Check it out:

Fancy Nancy Aspiring Artist


Adult Fiction Books

Towne Book Center Book Club December Pick: This is Where I leave You by Jonathan Tropper

There is something wrong with Jonathan Tropper.


this is where

There is something very wrong with Jonathan Tropper.  But I like it.

This month at Towne Book Center & Cafe we’re discussing This is Where I leave You by Tropper. This past year we’ve read two or more books about death, dying, and funerals, and I was spent.  So when it was time to read this, I was slightly peevish about its prospects.

Turns out I was freakishly incorrect.

To be sure, someone dies in the book, there’s a funeral, and there’s crying.  Aside from those aspects, this title is nothing, I repeat NOTHING like a typical burying a parent type of book.


Because there is something wrong with Jonathan Tropper.  Tropper is kind of the male Jewish Jenny Lawson type of person: if something can go freakishly awry, it will.  And you (the main character) won’t be the least bit surprised by it.

Where do I begin?

The main character’s father dies and all of the adult siblings must meet up to attend the funeral and all of the accompanying social situations that brings.  What you don’t expect is for Judd to be cuckolded and for everyone to know about it.  You don’t expect the presiding rabbi’s name to be Rabbi Boner.

Get where I’m going with this?


I just found out that the movie version of this crazy (cray cray as my 16 yr old says) book comes out next September.

The irony of the situation on Planet Pam is that I read Jenny Lawson’s book, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, on the train last winter to attend my father in law’s funeral.  I giggled the whole way through the book.  It lightened my spirits and I shared some of the wackier bits with my bereft husband during our quieter moments in the hotel.  It felt sacrilegious and slightly dirty.

That’s how I felt reading This is Where I Leave You: sacrilegious and slightly dirty.

There’s something wrong with Jonathan Tropper.

I love it.

Adult Fiction Books

The Preservationist by Justin Kramon AUTHOR VISIT


One of the funnest aspects of my job at the bookstore (Towne Book Center & Cafe) is hosting book clubs.  This month we read The Preservationist by Justin Kramon and were visited by the author himself!  To be sure, author visits are always fun and eventful but the special part of this club was that he addressed everyone’s comments personally.  What’s not to love about that?

Here’s my video review. Tell me what you think.

If your club has read The Preservationist, why not contact him and see if he’s available?  He’s a good time and a genuinely good egg.  His website is easy:  He’s also on Facebook.

Have you read it?  Tell me what you think!

Adult Fiction Books

The Passage by Justin Cronin

This month at Towne Book Center & Cafe our book club is reading The Passage.  The book is over 700 pages long and quite daunting looking but the orange color is so pretty!

The tale reads like a realistic fiction book but it’s not until later that readers discover that there is actually a fantasy bend to the story.  To be sure, I was quite a ways into the book when I figured that out.

The pros: Great character development. I love character development as it lends to the credibility of the story.  That said, I am forced to admit…

The cons: I couldn’t finish the book.  There is so much background information that by the time Cronin got to the meat and potatoes of the story, I was spent.  I couldn’t go on.  I was emotionally drained.  And I still had another 350+ pages to go.

An Unconventional Librarian The Passage

Fortunately, there are over 20 people in our book club. I’m sure the discussion will be a lively one; no one will notice that I’ve not finished it.  Maybe I’ll just read the ending…

Have you read it? What did you think?

Our next book club pick is Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver.


Lisa Scottoline Book Club Daddy’s Girl

Lisa Scottoline Unconventional Librarian



















It’s been great fun hosting a Lisa Scottoline Book Club at Towne Book Center & Cafe.  Many of the ladies have read much more than I have but I can see why they are devoted readers.  To be sure, I’m a noob to Lisa Scottoline; but I’m hooked nonetheless.  So far, I’ve read these titles:

  • Look Again (A World Book Night pick)
  • Don’t Go
  • Come Home
  • Everywhere That Mary Went
  • Daddy’s Girl

I’ve enjoyed all the book immensely, but like others, I enjoy the legal thrillers the most.  I love that Scottoline tools around the Philadelphia area naming neighborhoods I’ve heard of or been in; it makes me even feel more part of the story. August’s pick was Daddy’s Girl about a law professor at Penn (coincidence?) who stumbles upon a horrible prison riot, falls in love, and gets pegged for murder.  I loved it! There’s a great surprise about the Underground Railroad, which, if you know history,  you know that the Quakers and Chester County, PA were a vital portion of the railroad.


At next month’s meeting we’ll play catch up in preparation for the big party at the author’s house in October.


Have you read any of Lisa’s books?  Which are your favorite?




Books Children

The Lemonade War the Tween Book Club pick at Towne Book Center & Cafe

It should come as no secret that I love kids books.  And? Unless you don’t follow me (why would you do that?) then you prolly haven’t heard me RAVE about my first tween book club meeting at work, Towne Book Center & Cafe.  I also do the social media stuff there.  Check us out on FB and Twitter.  Anyway, our first book was The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davis.  I chose this title because it’s on many of the summer reading lists in the suburban Philadelphia area and I thought it might be a fun way to help kids get through their reading lists.

Unconventional librarian Lemonade War

As you can see, I bribed the kids with smoothies and stickers! Not really. Bribe is such an ugly word.  The kids were eager to discuss the book and while all of them liked the book, they each were able to add their own personality stamp as to why they connected with the story. One brave soul even admitted that she identified with Evan because her little brother (sitting next to her) was like Jessie and sometimes it could be frustrating.  What she did confess, however, is that she is PROUD of her little brother for being so smart.  I think Evan could take a lesson from this young lady, don’t you?

We were all in agreement that the fruit flies were icky and so was Scott.

Next month? We’re reading We are Not Eaten by Yaks by C. Alexander London, which I’m really excited about because I just picked up his latest,  Proxy, at BEA and I can’t wait to read that as well.  Click the title and watch the book trailer.  Guarantee you’ll laugh!

Have you read the Lemonade War or We Are Not Eaten by Yaks?

Adult Fiction Conferences Reviews Young Adult

The Great Gatsby and Cupcakes and #BEA

The Great Gatsby

Who knew someone would find a way to combine books and food?  Well, the smart folks at BEA figured out how to do just that! They make cupcakes based on their fave books and then send the cupcakes to me to enjoy (I WISH)!

Either way, their videos are cute and fun and prolly very tasty.

You might remember I read and reviewed The Great Gatsby a while back for book club. My review is here.  While the book wasn’t a hit with me, I might hafta revisit the book while eating several yummy cuppies…


On that yummy note, take a look at the video…

How fun was that? Can’t you just see me yourself eating a cupcake?

Similarly, there is a funny pic going round Pinterest about Gatsby.  Let’s see if I can find the photo.

gatsby party

Thanks to I Waste So Much Time for the original post.  You’re completely right: Ain’t no party like a Gatsby party!



Adult Fiction Books Take Control of Your TBR Challenge

Lisa Scottoline’s Look Again, a World Book Night pick

So, I’m a World Book Night giver (YAY)!

Hi res WBN logo 2013

And I’m giving away the book


Look Again by Lisa Scottoline!

And, I’m hosting a reading group this week at Towne Book Center & Cafe featuring this book (triple yay!!). If you’re in the area, stop by Wednesday at 7pm.

I’m looking forward to chatting with other LS fans to see what makes them tick.  You might know that LS is a Philly area local and I had the pleasure of meeting her during an event at the store.


LS writes many novels in the mystery genre.  They are fun, quick, and easy to read.  What I love most about them is that since she’s local, she talks about local places in this novel, places I’ve heard of or been to.  How fun is that?

Have you read any Lisa Scottoline books? Do tell?

Oh yeah, and since this book was published prior to March 2013, it counts as part of Take Control of Your TBR Pile challenge, woot!


Adult Fiction Take Control of Your TBR Challenge

Take Control of your TBR Pile: Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson

So, I’m clearing out my TBR Pile and playing with Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer.









I have plans to read many many books, if you read my previous posts about this fun challenge you’ll know this.  REALITY: I’m not doing so hot.  hahhaah. But I did get ONE book read, Let’s Pretend this Never Happened by Jenny Lawson. It’s the biography of The Bloggess. IT IS FUNNY!!!!

An Unconventional Librarian

Here’s me reading it on the train.  Did you know Amtrak has WiFi?

And here’s me taking a picture of it at the bookstore where i work.

An Unconventional Librarian

Oops it’s sideways.  Turn your screen to the right.  Better?

So what can I say about this book? I loved it! It was funny and I felt like if she met me we’d be besties in real life!

How do you not love a book that makes you giggle while you’re riding the train?

You can’t not love it!!