One Dish, Two Ways!

Summer Book Review Part 3

Summer Book Review Part 3

Hi friends,

As fall is slowly but surely approaching us, I thought I would share one final book review for the summer. 21 was my final tally for the summer. I’m so proud of myself for accomplishing this goal and will continue to share what I am currently reading. Click the links below to read my other reviews!

Summer Book Review Part 1

Summer Book Review Part 2

After looking back, I realized there were 2 books that I completely forgot to do a review on! Those two are at the end!


This was my third Elin Hilderbrand book to read and wow, she did not disappoint! Summerland is about a teenage girl (named Penny) who tragically dies in a car accident. Throughout the story, we learn about the events leading up to that fateful moment through the perspective of several characters, including the three other individuals who were in the car with her. The stories of those closest to Penny and her family are very messy, complicated, and dramatic. At one point, I felt pretty bad for all of them and thought things couldn’t possibly get any better! However, in the aftermath of tragic, the prevailing message appears to be that love can be re-channeled and take on a new form. That’s probably what I enjoyed best about this book.

Nantucket Wedding

So glad I got to read this book during the summer! Something I’ve noticed about books about weddings is the focus is probably ¼ about the actual wedding itself and the rest of the book is all the drama surrounding it. By drama I mean family feuds, old flames, flings, encountering love for the first time at the blessed event, etc. This book pretty much had all of this included. This book kind of reminded of Elin Hilderbrand’s Beautiful Day which I read earlier this summer. Since I love books about weddings in general and am now obsessed with the east coast, I particularly enjoyed this novel.

Love Does

After reading Everybody Always, I knew I needed to read Bob Goff’s first book. His stories are so inspiring: how he helped pull off a proposal for a random guy, how he got into law school, how he created schools in Uganda, and how he came up with epic pranks for his friends. I’m just naming a few but to see the hands of God at work through ordinary people all in the name of love is truly an amazing thing. I love how Bob always does the unexpected even if it seems a bit crazy or inconvenient at the time. But love itself is a bit crazy isn’t it?

The Identicals

Oh man, what a juicy read! I binged read over the course of one day. This book reminded me of The Parent Trap where you have identical twins with divorced parents and the twins are separated. Except these gals had a longstanding feud and now have to come together for their dad’s passing. Mistaken identities and switcharoos dominate this novel as well as wading through the complicated family dynamites of this tangled family web. I thought the feuds would never end! Find out if they do or not! Great read!

The Phantom Tollbooth

I have wanted to read this book for a while now mostly because the book cover was so intriguing. This young bored boy finds himself traveling to many places (via a tollbooth) in an imaginary land and soon on a quest to rescue two princesses. Each of the characters he meets and places he traveled have very peculiar names yet logical and literal names. For example, the spelling bee is a bee who spells words. The Island of Conclusions can be accessed by simply jumping to conclusions. It is quite a humorous book and it reminded of Alice in Wonderland due to the interesting characters and places. The illustrations reminded me of those within a Roald Dahl book. Super fun and entertaining! 

Surprise Me

This was a cute read. This couple decides to start coming with different surprises for each other to add some spice into their marriage. At first, the surprises are simple and sweet but after a while, the story takes a more serious tone. One spouse starts to become suspicious of the other’s behaviors and it just takes off from there!

Let Me Lie

I could not put this book down. It is downright suspenseful and held my interest until the very end. A year after the main character’s parents pass away of suspected suicide, the main character starts to receive messages that make her suspect suicide was not the actual cause of death. As she starts to uncover the truths, someone goes to extreme measures to try and stop her! Find out what really happened to her parents in this book! Clare Mackintosh is an excellent writer!

What a great summer of reading! I am so glad I have devoted time to reading for pleasure. It truly is a game changer and of course terrific for stimulating the mind.

Here’s the cumulative list of everything I read (in the order I read them)

The Food Babe Way by Vani Hari

Freefall to Fly by Rebekah Lyons

The Marriage Pact by Michelle Richmond

Sisters First by Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Pierce Bush

Beautiful Day by Elin Hilderbrand

 The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen 

The Silent Wife by Kerry Fisher

The Castaways by Elin Hilderbrand

Workin’ Our Way Home by Ron Hall

Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella

Let Me Lie by J.T. Ellison

The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown

Daring Greatly by Brene Brown

Everybody Always by Bob Goff

The Lucky Ones by Tiffany Reisz

Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

Nantucket Wedding by Nancy Thayer

Love Does by Bob Goff

The Identicals by Elin Hilderbrand

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

Thanks for all of your book suggestions! I am always taking new recommendations and adding them to my “Want to Read” list on Goodreads!

Here’s a sneak peek of my first few books of fall!

Daring to Hope by Katie Davis Majors

The Atomic City Girls by Janet Beard

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson

Weekend at Thrackley by Alan Melville and Martin Edwards


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