Ann's Blog
Ann McCauley is a Pennsylvania women's literature author, who wrote the books Runaway Grandma and Mother Love, both available for sale at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
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December 2018
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11/30/18
Have a Merry little Christmas…
Filed under: General
Posted by: Ann @ 9:26 pm

About this time I trust you all are likely as tired of turkey as I am. We had a wonderful Thanksgiving, lots of laughter, food and family love abounded. There were twenty of us around the table this year.  November has flown by at sonic speed. I spent a weekend In Columbia, Md. with my sisters. We attended the annual Johns Hopkins Women’s Journey Conference. It was great as always and we enjoyed the sister/friend time of being together. I also earned nursing CEUs at the conference, a girl just never knows…

We’ve had winter weather for the past few weeks, looking out the windows to see the trees layered with fresh snow is lovely, especially the evergreens. It never fails to make me feel like Christmas! We put our tree up the day after Thanksgiving and slowly decorated our home, inside and out over the next few days. So far we are on point in our Christmas marathon. One of my best friends fell on black ice last week and has a badly broken ankle with screws and a plate, she was always a Mrs. Christmas like me. I can’t imagine how tough this December is going to be for her. I am taking her some good books to read next week, a person can only watch Hallmark Christmas movies so long!

I had two reviews posted on StoryCircle.org this month:

http://www.storycirclebookreviews.org/reviews/quietfear.shtml

A Quiet Fear by Thia Keen is a powerful novel based on her own experiences of child sexual abuse.  It is a story that stays with the reader long after the last page. Definitely a worthwhile read.

http://www.storycirclebookreviews.org/reviews/whippoorwill.shtml

The Last Whippoorwill by Mary Bryan Stafford is historical fiction about one family’s pioneer move to Texas with a Conestoga wagon that carried a heavy piano across rivers, through muddy trails and finally to their new homestead in Texas. It is another powerful well written story derived from the author’s imagination and family folklore. A great read!

I listened to The Reckoning, on audio, by John Grisham, fiction. This  man is a master of suspense and keeping the reader interested. His characters are likable and the plot kept me guessing. Though I was a bit disappointed with the ending.

Christmas in Evergreen by Nancy Naigle, fiction. It was a sweet but kept me guessing novel. I like to read one like this every holiday season. (I actually picked it up because it had an old red pickup on the cover.) And it’s already been made into a Hallmark movie, though I think they changed the title. I saw the previews and recognized the story, but the actors are all wrong for the characters in the book!

Every Breath by Nickolas Sparks, fiction. A sweet and powerful novel about a nurse in North Carolina and a safari guide form Zimbabwe. Characters are well developed and the plot throws surprising curves. It’s an emotional read, and the most romantic Sparks book I’ve read. It is interesting to compare the difference between his romance writing and that of the more prevalent female romance writers. 

November’s Book Club book was The Dry by Jane Harper. Everyone loved the book and the discussion was great,  always interesting to hear the variety of perceptions of other readers regarding the same events in the books we read. One member liked it so much that she’s already read Harper’s next novel! (I didn’t even know there was a next novel until she told us about it.)

We have seen several good movies this month:

A Star is Born with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper. It was magnificent, we both loved it. The music was outstanding. Who knew Cooper could sing and Gaga could act!?

Breathe, starring Claire Foy and Andrew Garfield, with Andy Serkis making his directorial debut. Amazing true story about a young couple’s resilience after he is struck down with polio at age 28. The invention of the iron lung and the full life they lead despite his disability. Beautiful story and should be a serious Oscar contender. Available on Netflicks.

Book of Henry starring Naomi Watts. It is a sweet movie with surprising twists. I recommend it. Starts a bit slow but worthwhile. Available on Netflicks.

The Wife starring Glenn Close. Excellent movie about a marriage between two writers and so much more.

Searching with John Chu and Debra Messing. An excellent thriller that kept us on the edges of our seats! Didn’t see the end coming.

And, of course, we are still binging on 24. We finished Season 6 in November.

Till next time, keep reading my friends…and maybe watch a few good movies too. 

Later, Ann

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