Sunday Post: Hard Work Pays Off #SmokyMountains

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted at the @ Caffeinated Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news and a post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. See the rules here.

I’m continuing with the new diet plan and I’ve lost 7 pounds so far, and I’ll weigh in again tomorrow. There’s a long way to go, but it’s a step in the right direction. The garden we planted recently is starting to grow and we’ve got some squash blossoms already and a few flowers on the tomatoes. It’s great to see efforts being rewarded.

Happy Father’s Day to my husband Doug, the rock of our family. I mentioned he had been painting his car, and it’s finished. I’m really proud of him.

I was in Blowing Rock, NC on the Blue Ridge Parkway the other day, and here are some pictures from an overlook. I’m blessed to live in such a beautiful area.


Things were a bit quieter on the blog this past week as I was busily finishing up reviews for the August edition of Historical Novels Review, the magazine of the Historical Novel Society. I will share the covers of some of the books I reviewed soon. I can’t post the reviews until after the magazine is published.

Monday I reviewed The Lives of Diamond Bessie by Jody Hadlock.

Wednesday I posted an excerpt of Bonds by Marie Ann Cope.

Self-Published Saturday I posted a review of Death at Dusbar College by Laura DiNovis Berry.


Monday I will share the covers of the books I’ve been reviewing for the Historical Novel Society the past few months.

Wednesday I will review A Rip Through Time by Kelley Armstrong

On Friday I will review The Hurricanes of Weakerville by Chris Rylander

On Self-Published Saturday I plan to review Downfall by Caleb Ward.


A DRESS OF VIOLET TAFFETA by Tessa Arlen from Random House for an Austenprose blog tour.

Have a great week everyone!

Tennessee Mountain Sunrise

Once again I am thankful for the beauty of the Tennessee Mountains in which I live, and the Appalachian Mountains in general. Here is the beautiful sunrise I was greeted with this morning. Some of the pictures below almost look like a fire instead of a sunrise. I realize once again how blessed I am to live in the mountains.

Doesn’t this look like a fire? It’s just a beautiful mountain sunrise.

I took all these pictures from the same spot in my front yard, but with very different perspectives.

This inspires me to recommend books about the Appalachian Mountains. Of course Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods, but also a lesser known book, Grandma Gatewood’s Walk. This book is about the first woman to walk the entire Appalachian Trail, and she happened to be a 67-year-old grandmother! This is a “can’t miss story.” I loved Bear in the Back Seat, about Kim DeLozier, a Smoky Mountain park ranger for over 30 years. My favorite fictional book about the Mountains has to be Christy, by Catherine Marshall, because it’s a close look at the Mountain people in the early 20th century. I also love Adriana Trigiani’s Big Stone Gap series, which is set in the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia in more contemporary times, and includes 8 books. And of course there are so many more. What books about the Appalachian Mountains do you like? Please comment below.

And I must leave you with a photo of my absolute favorite place in the the world, my “happy place,” Deep Creek, which is a part of the Smoky Mountains National Park, but is located in Bryson City, NC, which also happens to be my Mom’s hometown and the place to which I will retire in 3 years. This is where I go when I want to feel complete peace. The waterfall photo directly below is from the Bryson City, NC Facebook Page. The rest of the photos were taken at Deep Creek by Doug DeMoss.

Photo by Doug DeMoss
Photo by Doug DeMoss
Photo by Doug DeMoss

Have a blessed Sunday!