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Thursday, June 14, 2012

SUMMER READING: What's in YOUR bag?

Hi everyone!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place to be any day of the week when you’re mind is wandering to far away places and the desire to read something, ANYTHING is just TOO much. 


Quick one line reminder before we dive right in…one AUTOGRAPHED copy of Daddies Do It Different by Alan Sitomer up for grabs through Sunday, June 17th…don’t miss out!  See…I kept it short.  ^_^  Now for the even better stuff (get it?  Because that was “good stuff” and this is the review…)

Yesterday, we ventured into Middle Grade Fiction with the first book in a horse centered series that really made an impression.  Today, we’re jumping ahead to a Fiction title that could just as easily be placed in the Young Adult category with nary a change.  Get ready readers because this is another one for your summer reading list that you won’t be able to say no to.  Today’s book of choice is….


By

From the publisher
A European vacation. A luggage mix-up. A note from a secret admirer.

Meet two single parents who think they're too busy to date.
And two teenagers who can't stop writing flirty emails.
This is a tale of connections—missed and made—in a universe that seems to have its heart set on reuniting Ms. 6B and Mr. 13C.

Webb
I can't believe I picked up the wrong bag at the airport. My dad is never going to let me hear the end of it.

Coco
I don't understand why Mom told me to pack my worst underwear. And now I've lost my bag? Ack!

Andrew
I cannot stop thinking about that woman in seat 6B on the flight to Paris.

Daisy
I don't have time to worry about the creep sitting in 13C who slipped a note in my purse. I have to find my daughter's missing bag before this ruins our vacation.

In the Bag is a smart and stylish story that explores the old-fashioned art of romance in a modern world, where falling in love can be as risky as checking a bag on an international flight. Buckle your seat belt—it's going to be a bumpy vacation!



First things first, if you have heard of the sisters Klise….that would be Kate Klise and M. Sarah Klise….you need to correct that folly STAT!  This amazing duo is responsible for the creation of MANY wonderful children’s books that are not only great reads for all ages, but perfect celebrations of the written word.  Of course!  …you say… they’re books!  The word has to be written!  Ah, but not so…or rather not exactly.  Allow me to explain…

In today’s world, the art of letter writing or hand written passages tends to be falling by the wayside.  Think about it.  When was the LAST time you wrote a letter?  I mean with your hands, a pen/pencil and paper.  Can you even remember?  What about a note-to-self…jotted one of those down recently?  Or perhaps you grabbed your smartphone or tablet PC to type it up instead.  Yep…GUILTY as charged (both you and me)!  Now, I try to write out my reviews prior to posting them…something about a pen and paper that makes the work seem more weighty…but even that gets dropped from time to time….depending on my available time.  The books in their repertoire, the stories they contain, are for the most part completely told through correspondence whether it be letters, lamppost flyers, menus, newspapers clippings or what have you.  The entire thing!  It’s fun, it’s amazing, it’s something that really gets you thinking about all the times that you could have responded the old fashioned way without missing a deadline, and how much more that received response meant to the recipient. In short, you should really check them out….but I digress, back on today’s title….

This is Kate Klise’s first endeavor into the world of adult fiction…which due to the story itself, could easily be housed in the land of Young Adult without feeling like a wolf among sheep.  In this story, we have a case of mistaken identity…of a case…a written note that was met with a heart full of skepticism despite its true intentions…and the mission of one bag to change the fate of four people for better or worse.  Okay, so it’s the actions of those that found and lost said bag that get things rolling, but fate seems to have a big hand in it all as well.  It’s hilarious, it’s touching, it’s sweet, it’s not to be missed….which of course you’ve heard all before, but trust me, it applies. 


Sample from 43 Old Cemetary Rd series

Fans of her children’s fiction will not be disappointed as her popular style of storytelling is not completely erased despite the older audience aimed for.  That’s right.  The appearance of correspondence throughout the book from the handwritten note to the emails that fly back and forth between Coco and Webb work wonders to put you right there in the story while giving it that air of familiarity that can’t be denied.  Another deja vue moment?  The included illustrations when day turns to night.  The images depicted give readers a glimpse of what’s forthcoming in the next few chapters, but only enough to peek your interest while not spoiling the fun.  I know, I know…pictures in an ADULT fiction book, and yet…it works REALLY well.  Now on to the characters…

Daisy and Andrew are the slightly jaded adults just trying to make their way through another trip abroad.  Daisy is there for pleasure with her daughter Coco; Andrew is there for work with his son Webb.  All work and no play makes for one stressed out papa, but the same can be said about all play when a work opportunity that will also help out a friend is staring you in the face. Let’s just say they’d be a match made in heaven if their paths would only cross…and cross they do but they end up more crossed than anything else.  It’s rather funny and a great example of how one should not assume what another means nor intentions are….just ask them to speak their mind already!  SO much confusion could be afforded.  Now on to the “children”…

Children is not an appropriate term…nor would they like that I even used it for a moment as they are teenagers.  Coco is just graduating high school with college right around the corner, a good girl (too good at times according to Mom) and smart as a whip….Webb is right along the same paths as well, though his Dad wishes he would become technology challenged for a while at least and enjoy the European landscape.  Their chance email encounter due to the bag switcheroo is entertaining to say the least…especially when they are trying to sort out if they each are who they say they are (though I cringed at Webb’s proof that he wasn’t an old creep or globe-trotting international playboy around page 52…really, never written a real letter…NEVER?).  Never has a case of “mistaken identity” been captured so fully and full of life as this….well, that I’ve seen so far at least. 

Plans are made, dates are set and gasp!  They agree to meet, swap bags, and maybe numbers if all goes well….*wink*wink*…what could go wrong?  Ha!  If you really asked that, than perhaps you thought we were reading a fantasy fiction work, whereas this one is more contemporary thereby giving it free reign to have things go wrong that can go wrong. It mostly boils down to a lack of communication…which again is pretty ironic since that’s what they were doing this whole time…and bottled up feelings, but it translates to a story you won’t be able to put down.  The pages fly by and before you know it, you’ve reached the end….and although its not the one you thought you were speeding towards, it’s perfect just the same.

In summary, a great summer reading pick for young adult readers and beyond!  If you enjoy a fast flowing story of mishaps, chance encounters, potential connections missed and gained, as well as time spent in a foreign land, this one is most certainly for you.  There are moments that are smile inducing, moments of frustration, kindness shown and forgiveness given…but mostly there are the moments we stumble and share through a life well lived that lead us down those often unexpected but truly worthwhile paths that memories are made of.  A grand adventure you won’t be able to put down (I know I couldn’t!) with a cute cover to boot (love the outfit!), you’ll certainly want to make room for this one in YOUR bag this season.

Review copy received courtesy of William Morrow / HarperCollins.  (THANKS!) For more on this title as well as their complete catalog, be sure to visit them online, like them on Facebook or follow along on Twitter.  This book was released just last month and should be readily available for consumption on a bookstore shelf near you.

Until next time…happy stumbling….and happy reading!


5 comments:

Melanie said...

I love books set in a foreign country. This one sounds like a perfect summer read. Glad you enjoyed it! :)

....Petty Witter said...

Loving the idea of the art of old-fashioned romance in a modern world.

Melissa (My World...in words and pages) said...

Sounds lovely! And as you mention great for the summer. :) Thank you!

The1stdaughter said...

Oh, I'm a sucker for a good hand written letter. My hubby and I wrote letters by hand to one another for about two years while he and I were on missions for our church and thousands of miles apart. Yep, no technology at all. Those letters are some of my most valued possessions now. I love the idea of a book centered around the concept! I'll definitely have to check this one out!

Fabulous review as usual! :o)

GMR said...

Melanie: Yes, it's like taking a European vacation without the cost/time!

Petty Witter: Definitely! Not often showcased in a "here and now" setting.

Melissa: Agreed!

The1stdaughter: Really? How adorable! I bet those will be family heirlooms down the line... ^_^

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