Dec 212011

4 days until Christmas


It’s Wednesday, which means Mindy’s up. Take it away, Mindy. :)

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LDSWBR: What Christmas-related activity would you like to do this year that you have never done before?

MINDY: I think it would be fun to go see the lights at Thanksgiving Point. My sister raves about them, and I think they would be beautiful.

LDSWBR: If you could find one book under the tree this year, what would it be?

MINDY: I really have been looking forward to reading Crossed by Ally Condie, and The Death Cure by James Dashner.

LDSWBR: What is your favorite childhood Christmas memory?

MINDY: I am not good with surprises, ask my husband. I like knowing things in advance, even presents. When I was younger, a lot younger :), I really wanted Hysteria by Def Leppard. I asked my sister for it, but there wasn’t an album shaped gift under the tree. In my “sneaky” ways, I cut along the tape line, unwrapped the small box, and saw there was a note inside, telling me where to find my real gift. I did feel bad about being sneaky, but the funny part was, she knew I would do that. That’s why she put me on a treasure hunt.

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Wow, this was hard. To narrow it down, I chose some of my favorite that I rated 5 stars on goodreads. Last year, I cheated, and had too many favorites. This year, I’m playing by the rules.

Mindy’s Top Ten (in no particular order)

  1. Rearview Mirror by Stephanie Black
  2. Tuesday’s at the Castle by Jessica Day George
  3. The Kissing Tree by Prudence Bice
  4. My Fair Godmother by Janette Rallison
  5. Variant by Robison Wells
  6. Pumpkin Roll by Josi Kilpack
  7. Bad Guys of the Book of Mormon by Dennis Gaunt
  8. City Limits by Sheralyn Pratt
  9. Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
  10. The Cross Gardener by Jason Wright
What are you favorites from my list? Merry Christmas!

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To enter the Countdown to Christmas 2011 contest, complete the following and then tell us what you did:

  • **Required entry (+1) – Leave a thoughtful comment on this post. (More than just “Great contest!” please.) You must leave a comment on this post for your other entries to count. If you are reading this post through email or an RSS reader, please click through to leave a comment.
  • Bonus entry (+1) – Confession time: tell us if you have ever peeked at your Christmas presents early and how you felt about ruining the surprise. Was it worth it? If you are a non-peeker, was there ever a time you were tempted to peek?
  • Additional entries (one time +1 entry each) – 1) Subscribe to LDSWBR through email 2) Follow @LDSWBR on Twitter 3) Like LDS Women’s Book Review on Facebook (all found at the the top of the right sidebar on the LDSWBR blog). NOTE: If you already subscribe through email, follow us on Twitter, or Like us on Facebook you must tell us in a comment for the extra entries to count.
  • By leaving a comment and entering the Countdown to Christmas 2011, you agree to the contest information found here.


***If you haven’t read the contest rules and info, read them here.***


Book prizes donated by their authors:

  • Winners choice of  Divinely Designed, Luck of the Draw, or Minor Adjustments by Rachael Renee Anderson
  • Winner’s choice of Secret Sisters, Dearly Departed, or Hang ’em High by Tristi Pinkston
  • Montana Summer by Jeanette Miller
  • Ribbon of Darkness by Julie Coulter Bellon
  • Not My Type by Melanie Jacobson
  • Cinder & Ella by Melissa Lemon (ebook)
  • Pride & Popularity by Jenni James
  • The Kissing Tree by Prudence Bice
  • Rearview Mirror by Stephanie Black (paperback or Kindle)
  • The Next Door Boys by Jolene B. Perry
  • Winner’s choice of one of the books in the Sadie Hoffmiller Culinary Mystery Series by Josi S. Kilpack (including Banana Split which will be released in February 2012)
  • Seeking Persephone by Sarah M. Eden
  • Obsession by Traci Hunter Abramson
  • Circle of Secrets by Kimberley Griffiths Little (autographed hardcover!)
  • Indelible by Lani Woodland and a swag bag!
  • Identity by Betsy Love
  • The Hainan Incident by D.M. Coffman (autographed copy)
  • Count Down to Love by Julie N. Ford
  • Geek Girl by Cindy C. Bennett
  • The Breakup Artist by Shannen Crane Camp
  • Seers by Heather Frost
Don’t forget to comment! Merry Christmas and happy reading!


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  29 Responses to “Mindy’s Top Ten Reads of 2011 – Countdown to Christmas 2011”

  1. My Fair Godmother by Janette Rallison is the only one I’ve read… I REALLY want to read Jessica Day George’s new one. I love her books. And Variant. ;)

  2. My Fair Godmother by Janette Rallison is the only one I’ve read. I really want to read Jessica Day George’s new one. And Variant! And Stephanie Black’s… Okay, all of them sound good! :D

  3. And I just commented twice. My computer is being weird. So…three comments. *sigh*

  4. I can’t actually say that I read any of those books, but I’d love to.

    As for whether I ever cheated and peeked? No, I never need to. I usually always know what I get. Have a sixth sense about these things. ;-)

  5. I haven’t read any of your picks. I seem to be running into that a lot lately. It is really hard to keep up on my reading when I have a newborn. I am struggling to just survive. It won’t last forever though. This is a cute site. I have read several of Jessica Day George’s books but not that one. As far as confessions: I don’t think I ever peeked. I may have shaken or guessed. Now being a mom myself there is no secrecy. I know what everyone is getting, since I have to do all the shopping. But I haven’t gotten to the point yet where I will skip buying myself something for Christmas. Hey, I work hard keep everything going and deserve a bit of fun. Or perhaps a lot this year. I did just have a baby after all.

    Hope, Love, and Happy Endings

  6. I LOVED Rearview Mirror and Pumpkin Roll! The only other one that I’ve read was Variant, and I did enjoy that. Thanks!

  7. When I was young, I was awful! We’d find all of our presents beforehand. My parents finally had to put a padlock on their closet door.

  8. The only one I have read on your list is Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. This was a beautiful book that I really enjoyed.

    I only peeked once when I was a kid because my brother wanted me to look with him. They were all in a closet and not wrapped yet. I felt bad after and never did so again. I do like to look at the size and shape and try to guess.

  9. I’ve only read My Fair Godmother (and loved, loved it!) but there are several on your list that I’ve bought and are currently sitting on my TBR shelf (which I can somehow never make much of a dent in because I keep adding to it!). Two my girls both read Tuesdays at the Castle and told me it was wonderful — can’t wait to read that one, along with many others on the list! If only there were more hours in the day or I required less sleep.

  10. I only remember “peeking” once as a child and that was completely by accident. I was looking for something in my parent’s room and happened to look under the bed, where I found some unwraped videos. I love to be surprised, so I was really sad that I had seen them. I tell my kids and my husband not to give me any clues about my presents — I’d much rather be surprised than figure it out beforehand.

  11. I’d have to agree with your list, at least most of them, I think there’s only one or two I haven’t read yet, but I have some in my to be read pile.

  12. I really liked My Fair Godmother. I read the My Unfair Godmother this year. Both good books.

  13. Holy moley! I haven’t read anything on that list! I’m hoping to read the romantic ones, though. :)

  14. LOL! I just peeked at a present yesterday. :) I wasn’t going to, but suddenly decided to and I was glad I did. In this particular case I didn’t want to be surprised on Christmas.

  15. Mindy, I’m so excited the you included Rearview Mirror on your list!

    I’ve read Variant, Pumpkin Roll, and My Fair Godmother and enjoyed them thoroughly.

  16. Thanks for sharing your top ten!! Loved your story about not being able to keep surprizes!! That is how I am at times too. Your story about the record made me laugh!!

  17. Once in a while I just get that urge to peek. It’s never worth it cuz then you know what you’re getting!

  18. I subscribe through e-mail

  19. I also follow on Facebook!!

  20. Thank you for having a great place where I can come for book recommendations that I know won’t go against my standards!

  21. One time I peeked and saw a GIANT boom box hidden in our basement. I was so excited! Turns out my mom was hiding it for a neighbor. Her daughter my age got a nice surprise Christmas morning. I never went snooping again!

  22. I like you on facebook!

  23. I follow you on Twitter, too! Thanks for the great info!

  24. I am excited to follow you through my Google reader, too!

  25. I read My Fair Godmother by Janette Rallison and enjoyed it.

    I also read and enjoyed Lemon Tart by Josi Kilpack, but haven’t read the other books in this series yet.
    I have a copy of Tuesday’s at the Castle by Jessica Day George on my bedside table and look forward to reading it soon. I’m hoping to get a copy of Variant by Robison Wells for my birthday in a couple months. I’ve also wanted to read City Limits by Sheralyn Pratt.

  26. I confess that I’m a boring rule follower and haven’t peeked at my Christmas presents.

  27. I just finished Pumpkin Roll, and am looking forward to reading the next book in the series. I haven’t read Rear View Mirror yet, but it’s at the top of my wish list.

    Like MaryKay Lee, I have to admit that I’m a boring rule follower. My dad used to ask me to wrap presents so he wouldn’t have to, and a few times I found out afterward that the box I wrapped was a present for me. I hadn’t even checked! I accidentally found one of my presents one year a couple of weeks before Christmas, and felt guilty about it even though I hadn’t done anything. Pathetic!

  28. I’m honored and thrilled that Bad Guys of the Book of Mormon made your top ten list! Thank you so much!

  29. […] post their favorite-books-of-the-year and review summaries.  Scott Hales, Sheila at LDSWBR, Mindy at LDSWBR, Shanda at LDSWBR, The Sweet Bookshelf, Kaskawan, Laura Craner at AMV, Jesse Christiansen, Fire and […]

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