Top Ten Tuesday: Blind Date with a Book

February 23, 2016 Carol Ross, Donna Hatch, Graeme Simsion, Katarina Bivald, Kate Morton, Lauren Willig, Lynn Cahoon, Mandy Baggot, Rainbow Rowell, Shannon Hale, Top Ten Tuesday 64

Top Ten Tuesday Favorite

This week’s topic for Top Ten Tuesday is the books we enjoyed recently outside of our typical genres or comfort zones. If you’ve been hanging around me or the blog for even just a week, you’ve probably figured out that my “typical category” is Christian fiction.  When you’re as attached to a category as I am to mine, you get comfy and have a general idea of what to expect from books within that category.  This is true for fans of dystopian fiction, bodice rippers, cozy mysteries, etc.

blind date with a book

As someone who just plain loves stories and loves the adventure of reading, I do more than occasionally branch out into other categories 😉 But it’s always with a little trepidation at first, mainly because I’m not sure what I’ll encounter along the way. Will the writing voice be as warm and engaging as I’m used to? Will I have to wade through a little profanity or a lot? And so on and so forth.

So when I learned of this week’s topic, I couldn’t help but think of my category-adventures as a bit like going on blind dates. Which brought to mind the popular experience that’s been sweeping through coffee shops and bookstores lately. Which led to… this post 🙂

Click on each “wrapped cover” to be taken to the book’s Amazon page.

(Or if you just don’t want to click, you can hover over the Goodreads button and it should show you the title in the link.)

readers of broken wheel blind date

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What I loved about this book: I was captivated the moment I started reading it. It is, at its heart and soul, a love letter to books but so much more than that, too. It is a poignant portrait of small town Midwest America, a delightful tribute to friendship that crosses all barriers, and a (mostly) gentle nudge to anyone who has been hiding their true selves behind a shell of insecurity. Read More.

the lake house blind date

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What I loved about this book:  A marvelously captivating story that spans decades through the seamless use of a dual timeline, I was swept away by the scenery, the family dynamics, and the unsolved disappearance that has haunted a family for years.Besides composing a beautiful narrative, the author shows her clever story-crafting skills as well – in the minute details that may go unnoticed individually but as a whole create the perfect atmosphere for the plot. Read More.

the secret history of the pink carnation blind date

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What I loved about this book: Oh my word – I love this author’s writing style! Droll humor, witty asides, hilarious larger-than-life characters. It’s like the swashbuckling humor from “The Princess Bride” meets the family from “While You Were Sleeping” (without the guy in the coma … or the love triangle… and set in the early 1800s.) But, you know, besides that. 😉  A note of caution to my Christian fiction readers: there were a couple of scenes in this book that got a little … umm… hotter than I’m used to.

attachments blind date

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What I loved about this book: This is one of those stories that made me laugh and cry and smile and melt over the course of time we spent together. It’s adorable. It’s heartwarming. It’s nostalgic. It’s romantic. The dialogue is real and smart and witty, and you just want to sit down with these characters for dinner and chat a while. Definitely a book I could read several times and still enjoy just as much as the first time.

the rosie project blind date goodreads button RIMSP

What I loved about this book: First – this wins the award for “best last 3 sentences to end a book” 🙂 Left me smiling as I figuratively closed the cover (because of course I was reading the ebook). Second – at the risk of minimizing the author’s own great talent & voice, I couldn’t help but subtitle this “If Sheldon Cooper Fell In Love” as soon as I began to read.

the guise of a gentleman blind date

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What I loved about this book: I experienced nearly every range of emotions possible while reading this book. The hero is that playful, smoldering rogue-type who wields winks like weapons (say that last phrase ten times fast!) and leaves a trail of swooning females in his wake when he grins (me totally included). The banter between the hero and heroine– right from the beginning – is just top notch and so entertaining! I grinned through nearly every scene they shared. And then… I just cried for a while. And held my breath. While tears just kept streaming down my cheeks. Whew. This one tugged at all my emotions, y’all. In the best possible way.

one wish in manhattan blind date

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What I loved about this book:  A wonderfully cozy Christmas read tinted with shades of Scrooge and bits of delightful British humor, this book draws on everything that makes New York magical during the holidays. The hero starts out rather unlikable but has the greatest transformation, though it’s the heroine who is figuratively visited by the ghosts of her past, present, and future. The little girl steals the show with her adorableness and her authenticity. Read More.

austenland blind date

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What I loved about this book: It’s extremely entertaining and written for everyone who, like me, has a tendency to collect fictional crushes.  The characters leap off the page and evoke a wide range of feelings – from distaste to hilarity to swoons.  Speaking of hilarity, I envisioned actress Jennifer Coolidge every time one of my favorite secondary characters was in a scene, and I was absolutely delighted to see that she plays this character in the film adaptation. Which made the film worth watching. Because the book’s ending is way cuter.

murder on wheels blind date

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What I loved about this book: This is “cozy mystery” at its best! Engaging writing, likable characters, and a couple of surprising twists make this a terrific choice for an evening or weekend read. The writing is light and witty without sacrificing on quality, and I loved the main character’s dry sense of humor. Read More.

a family like hannah's blind date

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What I loved about this book: The characters in this book – particularly the adorable little boy – will tug. at. your. heart. The hero had me swooning, and the heroine had me checking my contact list for her name because I’m certain we’ve been friends for years. This is a sweet, clean romance that will still have you reaching for your fan on occasion! Read More.

Sooo.. what books have you read lately that were out of your typical genre? Let me know & be sure to include a link to your Top Ten Tuesday post if you’re participating this week! 🙂


64 Responses to “Top Ten Tuesday: Blind Date with a Book”

  1. rosemawrites

    Yay! So love the format that you did! 😀 😀 😀
    I loooove The Rosie Project, too! 😀 And I will be reading (hopefully) Attachments, soon!

  2. CJ Dawn

    I had requested an ARC of The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend, but wasn’t approved. It sounded like such a fun read! I’ll have to check it out. And I haven’t read Austenland, but I really enjoyed the movie, so I’ll have to add that one to my list too. href=””>My TTT

  3. carylkane

    Carrie! You are so creative! I loved this post. Thank you for encouraging me to explore beyond my comfort zone. 😉

  4. Kristine

    I really loved your take on this topic. You’ve done such an amazing job once again. I only wish you would have included the name of the books. I know, I know. I’m such a lazy reader. But all that clicking! 😛 Obviously, I’m just kidding. You did a great job.

    Thanks for stopping by earlier!

    • Carrie

      I still need to read Midnight in Austenland – I had heard mixed reviews so have waited on it. But now that I’ve got a recommendation from someone I “know”, I’ll put it back on the list 😀

  5. Rissi

    “Blind date with a book”? How cute is your prompt this week, Carrie. Love it. I still need to read “Austenland” especially given how much I can fangirl about the movie. 😉

  6. Rissi

    “Blind date with a book”? What a fun prompt you put together this week, Carrie. Also, I REALLY need to read “Austenland” at some point. Even more so since I can (and have) had some major FANGIRL discussions about the film. 😉

  7. ThePerspicaciousReader

    I really loved the way that you did this! This is a great list; and quite a few that I want to pick up now. This is a great way to get people interested in a book without judging it by it’s cover.

  8. rudejasper

    I’ve recently been hearing a ton about The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend and especially since I live in Iowa, I’ve been very interested in picking it up. Glad to hear your praise heaped on the rest!

  9. Eve Langell

    OMG I LOVE Attachments it was so cute and sweet and just all fun. Also made me remember the huge freakout over Y2K lol The only other one I know and btw I love the movie and didn’t know it was a book is Austenland.

  10. Amy @ Pages of Starlight

    Love the sound of Murder on Wheels. In fact, I’ve been looking at it ever since I saw your review for it. I think though, the geocaching and the gluten-free food truck have officially sealed the deal. I’m also going to go check out both your historical romances because I do love those type of books. And The Guise of a Gentleman sounds RIGHT up my alley!

  11. novelcravings

    What a great idea! I love the Blind Date with a Book idea. I need to tell my library to give it a try. I loved the way you used it for this weeks Top Ten Tuesday. This is a great way to get people out of their comfort zone because based on titles or covers I might ‘write off’ (no pun intended) a book without giving it a chance. Thank you for sharing this with me. I can’t wait to see what you do next week!

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