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Friday, March 30, 2018

The Other Mother by Carol Goodman

The Other Mother by Carol Goodman
Published by William Morrow ISBN 9780062562647
Trade paperback, $15.99, 336 pages

Carol Goodman writes mysteries usually set in the Catskill Mountain/Hudson Valley area of New York State, where she resides and where my husband grew up. It's a unique setting, where she paints a picture of spookiness and dread amid the beautiful mountains and valley.

In her latest novel, The Other Mother, before the story begins, we know that it will be about a woman who is diagnosed with Postpartum Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, which means that she will have thoughts about harming her child. The reader is uncomfortable right away.

As the story begins, Daphne Marist has taken her baby daughter Chloe and is hiding from her husband. Is she a victim of domestic violence? Daphne has taken a job as an archivist for Schuyler Bennett,  who happens to be Daphne's favorite author. When Schuyler greets Daphne, she calls her Laurel. Why?

From Daphne's journal entries, we discover that Laurel is her best friend from a mommy support group. Laurel also has a young daughter named Chloe, and Laurel helps bring Daphne out her shell. She spruces Daphne up, getting her new clothes and a new haircut, similar to Laurel's. She even finds her a babysitter so that the two ladies can go to yoga class.

The women bond over their children and the fact that they both lost their parents at a young age. They both have degrees in library science  (and Laurel is an archivist as well) and Laurel says that it's because they "both wanted to put the world in order after it had fallen to pieces."

The story goes back and forth from Daphne's journal entries to her new job with Schuyler. Schuyler lives in a old stone home, replete with a tower, on the grounds of a psychiatric hospital that her father, a reknowned psychiatrist, founded.

Daphne becomes intrigued by a patient whom Schuyler's father treated, who many years ago left her baby in a dumpster at college and has lived at the hospital ever since. But Daphne's interest in this woman draws the attention of a doctor, and that causes trouble.

As the story progresses, we find out why Daphne is using Laurel's name. We also get journal entries written by Laurel that give us a surprising new perspective on Laurel's life. No one and nothing is as it seems in this spooky novel.

The Other Mother reminds me of those trippy 1970's made-for-television movies that would star Linda Blair or Kim Darby as a woman in jeopardy. A woman would be made to believe that she was going crazy by people around her to hide a sinister plot. It definitely has that 1970's vibe for me, and if you spent your Friday nights watching those movies, The Other Mother is for you.

I have to admit that I found the ending a little contrived, I'm not sure I buy the way it all tied together. But the women's stories of their postpartum issues were very real and emotional, and I think any mother will feel for Daphne and Laurel and their struggles.

Carol Goodman's website can be found here.

Thanks to TLC Tours for putting me on Carol Goodman's tour. The rest of her stops are here:

Tour Stops

Tuesday, March 27th: Into the Hall of Books
Wednesday, March 28th: Write – Read – Life
Thursday, March 29th: The Book Diva’s Reads
Friday, March 30th: bookchickdi
Monday, April 2nd: Jessicamap Reviews
Tuesday, April 3rd: 5 Minutes For Books
Wednesday, April 4th: A Splendid Messy Life
Thursday, April 5th: Doing Dewey
Monday, April 9th: Caryn, The Book Whisperer
Tuesday, April 10th: Tina Says…
Tuesday, April 10th: Novel Gossip
Thursday, April 12th: A Bookish Way of Life

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Weekend Cooking- A New Tuna Noodle Casserole Recipe

This post is part of Beth Fish Reads' Weekend Cooking.  If you have anything related to food, cookbook reviews, novel or non-fiction book reviews, recipes, movie reviews, etc., head over to Beth Fish Reads and add your post. Or, if you want to read food related posts, head over to read what some interesting people have to say about food.

When my sons were growing up, on Fridays during Lent we either had fried fish sandwiches from a popular locally-owned place, Seafood Express, or I made tuna noodle casserole.

My husband loves tuna noodle casserole, but I recently found out (many years later) that my sons dreaded tuna noodle casserole night. They really enjoyed going with their dad to pick up the fish, joining a long line of our friends and neighbors to get the best fish sandwich in town.

I never knew that they didn't like tuna noodle casserole, they kept that information to themselves and ate it without complaint.

Now that they have their own households, they never have to have tuna noodle casserole again, but my husband still enjoys it. I recently saw actress/Food Network host Valerie Bertinelli (from the original TV series One Day At A Time) on The Chew, and she made a tuna noodle casserole that looked much better than my old recipe so I thought I'd give it a try.

My husband was skeptical at first (he doesn't like to mess with a good thing), but when I explained that this recipe doesn't have peas in it (he hates them, I love them), he was willing to try it.

It turned out fabulous and now it is a frequently requested menu item on Fridays during Lent. I like the mushrooms in the recipe, and Bertinelli uses medium shells instead of egg noodles which I enjoyed too. She also uses crushed potato chips as a topping (I chose the salt and vinegar variety), and that turned great as well.
Photo from The Chew

There's no can of soup in the recipe (she uses whole milk and chicken broth), so it has a fresher taste to it as well. If you like Tuna Noodle Casserole, give this recipe a try. I highly recommend it.

You can get the recipe here and watch Bertinelli make the recipe as well by clicking here.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Two Terrific Mysteries That Will Have You Guessing Until the Very End

Reprinted from the Citizen:

Sometimes a novelist will write a story that, when published, often more than a year later, is so topical that you wonder if the author has a crystal ball. Two recent novels, filled with nail-biting suspense and an end twist that will stun you, fit that bill.
Author Chris Bohjalian has written nearly two-dozen books, and what sets him apart as a writer is that he writes in so many different genres. He has written historical fiction (“The Sandcastle Girls," “A Light in the Ruins”), a ghost story (“The Night Strangers”), mystery (“The Double Bind,” “The Sleepwalker”), romance (“Trans-Sister Radio”) and a coming-of-age story (“Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands"). What they all have in common is that they make you think. 
His latest novel, “The Flight Attendant,” begins with flight attendant Cassie waking up hungover in a stranger’s bed in Dubai. While most people might be frightened by this fact, Cassie is used to it.
Cassie frequently drinks until she passes out or blacks out and sleeps around. This morning, she vaguely remembers that she came back to Alex’s hotel room, got drunk on vodka and had wild sex.
She painfully opens her eyes and looks over to find that Alex, a man who flew first-class on Cassie’s flight, has had his throat slit from end to end, and is covered in blood. Cassie panics: Did she do this? She has never been violent before.
Cassie quickly showers the blood off herself, tries desperately to wipe away any fingerprints she may have left behind, and rushes to get back to her hotel and her flight back home. Calling the police in Dubai is not a good idea.
The flight home to New York was stressful, and Cassie’s friend, another flight attendant, notices that Cassie is crying and upset. When the police begin to question the airplane crew about Alex, someone tells them that Cassie and Alex got very chummy.
Cassie remembers that a female work acquaintance of Alex’s showed up that night. What she doesn’t know is that the woman, Elena, is a Russian assassin who works for some oligarchs whom Alex supposedly stole money from.
The tension is racheted up as Cassie tries to figure out who Alex was and who killed him, and Elena monitors Cassie, hoping she doesn’t have to kill her in this cat-and-mouse game that will have your heart in your throat until the crazy twist at the end. Anyone who is a fan of TV’s “The Americans," about Russian spies among us, should put “The Flight Attendant” on their list.
Alafair Burke is a former prosecutor turned author. Her newest novel, “The Wife,” tells the story of Angela and Jason Powell and their teenage son Spencer. Jason is a media sensation, author of popular nonfiction book “Equalnomics," NYU professor and owner of a consulting company that advises other companies on “how to make corporate decisions based on principles of equality.” He is the darling of the liberal 1-percenters. 
Angela was from the other side of the tracks on Long Island. She worked as a caterer to wealthy Hamptonites, where she met Jason, who swept her off her feet. Jason loves Angela and her young son Spencer, and they made a happy home in Chelsea, with Spencer at a private school and Angela at home caring for both of them.
All is well until the day a young intern accuses Jason of sexual harassment. He quickly becomes persona non grata until a police investigation is completed. His name is splashed all over the media, and the family comes under the spotlight, something that frightens Angela.
There is something in Angela’s past that she doesn’t want to come to light. She has gone to great lengths to begin a new life with Jason, and this incident could jeopardize that.
Then another woman accuses Jason of rape, and Angela now begins to doubt Jason. Could he have done what these women said he did?
A dogged female police detective is determined to get to the bottom of this when the woman who accused Jason of rape suddenly disappears. She believes there is more to the Powell family’s story.
There are so many layers to this gripping story. Burke keeps you guessing at to what the real story is, and there is more than one twist that will leave you breathless. By the time you get to the end, your head will be spinning. “The Wife” is a first-class mystery from a fantastic writer.

If you read

PUBLISHER: Doubleday
COST: Hardcover $26.95
LENGTH: 368 pages

COST: Hardcover $26.99
LENGTH: 352 pa
Diane La Rue is a member of the National Book Critics Circle and blogs about books at http://bookchickdi.blogspot.com. You can follow her on Twitter @bookchickdi, and she can be emailed at laruediane2000@yahoo.com.

Friday, March 16, 2018

In Praise of Difficult Women by Karen Karbo

In Praise of Difficult Women by Karen Karbo
Published by National Geographic ISBN 9781426217746
Hardcover,  $26, 346 pages

In the introduction to Karen Karbo's In Praise of Difficult Women: Life Lessons from 29 Heroines Who Dared to Break the Rules, the author states that "a difficult woman is a woman who insists on inhabiting the full range of her humanity." This book profiles 29 women in modern history who do just that.

Each chapter profiles one woman, beginning with a single word to describe them ("Fiesty" for Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, "Indefatigable" for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, "Determined" for Jane Goodall) and a vibrant illustration by Kimberly Glyder.

 Karbo writes a short sketch of each remarkable woman, and her opinion of what it is that makes each of them "difficult". I am familiar with all of the names in the book, but I got an deeper understanding of women whom I didn't know much about, like "imperious" French fashion designer Coco Chanel, who gets a longer chapter (perhaps because Karbo's previous book was The Gospel According to Coco Chanel).

People responded to her book about Chanel by saying it seemed that Chanel didn't seem like she was a nice person. Karbo would often say that Chanel was a "complicated, stubborn, ambitious visionary who transformed the way we dress, view ourselves in clothes and walk through the world. You need her to be nice on top of everything else?" People don't usually comment on ambitious men's "niceness".

"Fanatical" Eva Peron gets a longer chapter too, and for those who only know her from the Broadway musical "Evita" will appreciate maybe the most complicated woman in this book. Peron came from extreme poverty (as did Josephine Baker), and as the mistress, then wife, of Argentinian President Juan Peron,  she spent much of her time giving food, money and more to the poor in her country. She and her husband also refused to listen to any dissent, punishing those who disagreed with them, shutting down newspapers, unions, and impeaching Supreme Court justices.

I also found chapters on Josephine Baker, Frida Kahlo, Amelia Earhart, and Janis Joplin fascinating. Angela Merkel's story- a research scientist who lived under Communism in East Germany to rise up and become a unified Germany's Chancellor and now the leader of the free world- gives smart girls everywhere hope.

Many of us know Kay Thompson from the Eloise children's books, but her contributions to musical comedy world are innumerable. She was a choreographer, lyricist, vocal coach (Frank Sinatra owes her much), and it was her idea to have singers sing and dance at the same time on stage, instead of just standing at a microphone singing. The word diva was made for Thompson.

Perhaps the most moving anecdote that Karbo shares is a personal one. She was in First Lady Hillary Clinton's West Wing office in 2000, and she was speaking with an engaging young aide.  When Karbo asked her what was the best part of working for the First Lady was, the young lady's face "opened into a grin." She makes me feel smart!"  That doesn't make Clinton difficult, but it speaks volumes as to who she is.

In Praise of Difficult Women is a great read for Women's History Month. You can dip into it and read a few chapters while riding the bus, waiting at the doctor's office or in your car at school pickup. You're sure to find more than one who will inspire you to be a difficult woman. And if you want further reading about these remarkable women, Karbo shares her sources at the end, with further reading on her website here.

Thanks to TLC Book Tours for putting me on Karen Karbo's tour. The rest of her stops are here:

Tour Stops

Tuesday, February 27th: A Bookish Way of Life
Thursday, March 1st: A Bookish Affair
Monday, March 5th: Broken Teepee
Tuesday, March 6th: Ms. Nose in a Book
Wednesday, March 7th: Literary Quicksand
Tuesday, March 13th: Tina Says…
Wednesday, March 14th: Doing Dewey
Thursday, March 15th: Bibliotica
Friday, March 16th: bookchickdi
Monday, March 19th: Openly Bookish
Monday, March 19th: Cerebral Girl in a Redneck World

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Hot Mess by Emily Belden

This post is part of Beth Fish Reads' Weekend Cooking.  If you have anything related to food, cookbook reviews, novel or non-fiction book reviews, recipes, movie reviews, etc., head over to Beth Fish Reads and add your post. Or, if you want to read food related posts, head over to read what some interesting people have to say about food.

Hot Mess by Emily Belden
Published by Graydon House ISBN 9781525811418
Trade paperback, $15.99, 448 pages

As someone who ran two fast food restaurants with my husband, I could not resist the opportunity to be on the TLC Book Tour for Emily Belden's debut novel Hot Mess.

Allie Simon loves her job as a social media manager for a cotton  company. After hours she works at pop-up dinner events with her boyfriend Benji Zane, the bad boy hotshot chef of Chicago. Benji is three months sober after a serious drug problem and has moved into Allie's apartment.

He is a rock star as a chef, but other than creating the occasional pop-up dinners, he hangs out on Allie's couch watching the expensive cable channel package and playing around on the internet. But he does make Allie amazing lunches to take to work everyday.

Allie is charge of the money (which doesn't go much farther than barely covering their bills) and doles it out to Benji $20 at a time; that is all he can handle. The sex is hot and if Allie is honest with herself, she likes the attention she gets as the girlfriend of a guy everybody wants to know.

When Benji is approached by Angela, a woman who was at his last pop-up dinner, with a proposal to open his own restaurant on the hottest culinary avenue in Chicago, he is all-in. While a hedge fund manager is fronting most of the money for the restaurant, he requires that Benji come up with $30,000 of his own cash to invest and guess where Benji goes to for that.

Allie reluctantly cashes out her life savings to invest in Benji's restaurant, Here, and then finds out that Benji has relapsed. They have a terrible fight and he disappears six weeks before Here is to open.

Unable to get her investment money back, Allie and Angela team up, find a new chef in Tabitha, and work their butts off to make Here a success.

My favorite part of Hot Mess was watching Allie, Angela and Tabitha work together to open Here. I found the details of construction, hiring the staff, and placing the food orders fascinating. As they readied for opening night, I got jitters just as they did, hoping that all went well, and holding my breath as the first customers came in to dine.

I also felt heartache for Allie as she discovers that Benji is the not the guy she thought he was. Addicts are cunning and manipulative, and Benji personifies that perfectly.

I did find the idea that Allie was a media sensation by virtue of the fact that she is dating a culinary rock star a little hard to fathom, but I guess in this age of Kardashian, where people are famous for being famous or dating someone famous (like on the Bachelor, Allie and her girlfriends' favorite show) it is plausible.

I am older than the demographic that Hot Mess is aimed at, but I really enjoyed it. There are a lot of food references in here that will make you drool, and I liked that the women in this story became their own heroes through their strong work ethic. I highly recommend Hot Mess for anyone who likes Jennifer Weiner's novels and foodie fiction.

Thanks to TLC Tours for putting me on Emily Belden's tour. The rest of her stops are here:
Monday, March 5th: Ms. Nose in a Book
Monday, March 5th: Rockin’ & Reviewing
Monday, March 5th: @bookishconnoisseur
Tuesday, March 6th: @createexploreread
Wednesday, March 7th: Chick Lit Central
Thursday, March 8th: Kahakai Kitchen and @debinhawaii
Monday, March 12th: Simone and her Books and @simoneandherbooks
Tuesday, March 13th: Little Black eBook and @littleblack_ebook
Wednesday, March 14th: Bookchickdi
Wednesday, March 14th: Novel Gossip and @novelgossip
Thursday, March 15th: The Literary Llama and @theliteraryllama
Friday, March 16th: @somekindofalibrary
Monday, March 19th: Girls in Books and @girlsinbooks
Tuesday, March 20th: Moonlight Rendezvous
Wednesday, March 21st: A Bookish Way of Life
Wednesday, March 21st: @thehookandtale
Thursday, March 22nd: Caryn, the Book Whisperer
Friday, March 23rd: Palmer’s Page Turners
Monday, March 26th: West Metro Mommy Reads
Tuesday, March 27th: @remarkablylisa
Wednesday, March 28th: @mwladieswholit
Thursday, March 29th: Thoughts on This ‘n That
Friday, March 30th: Suzy Approved

Friday, March 9, 2018

The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian

The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian
Published by Doubleday ISBN 9780385542418
Hardcover, $26.95, 368 pages

One of the things I like best about author Chris Bohjalian is that every book he writes is so different from his last. He has written about a Vermont midwife accused of a terrible crime (Midwives), a young woman attacked while riding her bike (The Double Bind), an Italian family trapped in their villa in WWII (The Lights in the Ruins), a young American nurse who is witness to the Armenian genocide in 1915 (The Sandcastle Girls), and a man whose life intersects with a young woman caught up in sex trafficking when he hosts a bachelor party for his brother-in-law (The Guest Room), among many others.

His latest novel, The Flight Attendant, maybe his most topical yet. Cassie Bowden is a flight attendant who spends her time-off  getting blackout drunk and waking up in the bed of an unfamiliar man. She doesn't see this as a problem, she likes to drink and have fun.

Until the morning she wakes up in Dubai, in the bed of Alex Sokolov, a handsome hedge fund manager who grew up in Virginia and now lives in New York City. They struck up a conversation as she worked first class on the plane, and then met for dinner and went back to his hotel room, where they drank a lot of vodka and had sex.

She was nauseous and hungover and when she turned to look at Alex, his throat was slit from one end to the other. After monmentarily panicking, Cassie carefully showered the blood off herself, and wondered if she had killed Alex. She had done dumb things while drunk, but she was never violent.

She wiped her fingerprints off anything she touched and hightailed it back to her hotel, dressed and headed to the airport for her flight back to the United States. If needed, she'd call a lawyer from the US, but after what happened to Amanda Knox in Italy, calling the police in Dubai did not seem wise.

Cassie remembered that a woman, Miranda, a work acquaintance of Alex's, stopped by his hotel room and they all drank vodka while they talked business. Did she have anything to do with Alex's murder?

But Miranda is not her name. Her name is Elena and she is a Russian assassin tasked with killing Alex because he stole money from his investors, Russian oligarchs, which was not a good idea.

The Flight Attendant is a cat-and-mouse game as Cassie tries to figure out who killed Alex while evading the police investigation into his death and Elena is monitoring the investigation and Cassie, hoping she doesn't have to kill Cassie too.

As a big fan of FX television's The Americans, which is sadly winding up this spring (noooo!), I found The Flight Attendant a great companion to that. And with Russian meddling in our elections all over the news, it is the right time for this fast-paced novel with a surprise ending that will have you shaking your head in disbelief as Bohjalian pulls one over on the reader. I had to go back twice to say "What just happened????"

It is a crazy, suspenseful ride, and one well worth taking. Chris Bohjalian does it again.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

I'll Be Your Blue Sky by Marisa de los Santos

I'll Be Your Blue Skyby Marisa de los Santos
Published by William Morrow ISBN 9780062431936
Hardcover, $26.99, 320 pages

What first attracts you to Marisa de los Santos's novel I'll Be Your Blue Sky is the gorgeous cover- a red butterfly against a blue sky backdrop, with a green plant on the bottom left corner; it's striking.

The story opens in June of 1950 on Edith and Joseph's wedding day, as they enter their beautiful home. De los Santos reveals the home in loving detail, and you can close your eyes and picture each room as Edith describes it, and even smell "the sawdust and lemon oil and reckless salt wind."

The home is in a beach town in Delaware, a busy place in the summer, but dreary and desolate in the winter. They have a happy life together, canoeing, photographing wildlife, and enjoying each other's company.

Flash forward to the current day, Clare Hobbes' wedding day. Clare is marrying Zach, a man who appears to be her perfect match. But something is not quite right, and after Clare encounters an elderly Edith on a bench at the wedding venue, she realizes she cannot marry Zach, which at first confuses, then enrages, him.

A few weeks later, Clare gets a letter from a lawyer- Edith has passed away and left her large home to Clare. Why did this happen? Clare only spoke to Edith briefly. Since she at odds, and getting away from her life might be good for her, Clare goes to the house, called Blue Sky House.

Clare learns that Edith used to run a bed and breakfast at Blue Sky, but abruptly left in 1956 after a murder occured in the town. Did Edith have anything to do with the murder? When Clare finds two sets of ledgers hidden in a cupboard, she enlists her childhood best friend Dev to help her investigate.

At first glance, I'll Be Your Blue Sky seems like a typical chick-lit book, two women in different times telling their stories, but it is so much more. De los Santos surprised me with Edith's story, and I found it engrossing and couldn't turn the pages fast enough.

I loved Edith's strength and courage, and her relationship with the town's sheriff was touching. I admit to be a little lost with Clare's family story, there seemed to be so many people to keep track of that I was confused. When I discovered that they were all introduced in de los Santos' previous two books, You Belong to Me and Love Walked In, I immediately went to my Goodreads page to put them on my Want to Read list.

I hope that de los Santos gives us another book with more of Edith's backstory, she is truly one of the more fascinating characters that I have encountered in awhile. If you like novels like Christina Baker Kline's The Orphan Train, give I'll Be Your Blue Sky a try. I recommend it.

Here is my review of another Marisa de los Santos book, The Precious One.

Thanks to TLC Tours for putting me on Marisa de los Santos' tour. The rest of her stops are here:

Tour Stops

Tuesday, March 6th: Openly Bookish
Wednesday, March 7th: Time 2 Read
Thursday, March 8th: bookchickdi
Friday, March 9th: The Sketchy Reader
Monday, March 12th: BookNAround
Tuesday, March 13th: Mother’s Circle
Wednesday, March 14th: Kahakai Kitchen
Thursday, March 15th: G. Jacks Writes
Monday, March 19th: Literary Quicksand
Tuesday, March 20th: Broken Teepee
Wednesday, March 21st: Cerebral Girl in a Redneck World
Thursday, March 22nd: A Bookish Way of Life
Friday, March 23rd: Into the Hall of Books

Thursday, March 1, 2018

The Atomic City Girls by Janet Beard

The Atomic City Girls by Janet Beard
Published by William Morrow ISBN 9780062666710
Trade paperback, $15.99, 384 pages

Jennifer Egan's 2017 novel, Manhattan Beach, was set during WWII, and a big part of the story took place at a war factory, filled with women contributing to the war effort. The novel garnered great acclaim, deservedly so.

Janet Beard's The Atomic City Girls will appeal to fans of Manhattan Beach as it tells the fictional account of men and women who worked at a real munitions factory in Oak Ridge, Tennesee.  An entire city was created out of farmlands, and hundreds of people were brought there to work on a top-secret project- creating an atomic bomb.

Very few workers knew what they were working on; only scientists like Dr. Sam Cantor, a physicist from California, knew the true extent of what was going on. Sam found himself attracted to a young farm girl, June, whose grandfather had his land taken by the government for this project. June and Sam dated, even though Sam was a good ten years older than June, and much more sophisticated in the way of the world. He was also an alcoholic, and had a temper.

June's roommate Cici was a farm girl too, but she passed herself off as a society girl, from a good family, there just trying to help the war effort. What she really wanted was a rich husband from a prominent family, and she would do anything or hurt anyone to accomplish that goal.

The most compelling character for me was Joe Brewer. Joe was a black sharecropper who left his loving wife and three children behind in Alabama to go to Tennesee to make enough money for his family. Through Joe, his young protegee Ralph, and the young activist Ralph falls in love with, we see a different side to this great society.

The white workers have decent housing, and good food. June is impressed with the food, it's better than she had at home. The black workers lived in cold, damp huts, and they ate rice and beans for most meals.

Buses would pick up the workers and bring them to the work compounds, but the black riders were frequently tossed off the buses to make room for white workers. White married families were able to live together in houses, black families were separated, men in one hut, women in the other. The black workers on construction crews built the homes, but they were not allowed to live in them.

The Atomic City Girls (the title may be a misnomer, we get the male point of view here as well) is strongest when it shows the reader how the war effort worked in Oak Ridge. Workers were constantly reminded not to talk about their work with anyone, and not to write to their families about it. Letters home were read by government officials, and people were encouraged to turn in anyone who violated these policies.

I liked learning about this project, and the photos from the Department of Energy that are  interspersed throughout the book are fascinating. I was less interested in the love lives of the characters.

People who enjoyed Hidden Figures will also find The Atomic City Girls interesting. I recommend it.

Janet Beard's website is here.

Thanks to TLC Tours for putting me on Janet Beard's tour. The rest of  her tour stops are here:

Tour Stops

Tuesday, February 6th: Broken Teepee
Wednesday, February 7th: Kahakai Kitchen
Thursday, February 8th: Literary Quicksand
Friday, February 9th: West Metro Mommy
Monday, February 12th: Reading Reality
Tuesday, February 13th: Tina Says…
Wednesday, February 14th: Peppermint PhD
Thursday, February 15th: Time 2 Read
Tuesday, February 20th: Openly Bookish
Wednesday, February 21st: A Literary Vacation
Thursday, February 22nd: Bibliotica
Monday, February 26th: Literary Lindsey
Tuesday, February 27th: Instagram: @_literary_dreamer_
Wednesday, February 28th: Instagram: @theliterarybirds
Thursday, March 1st: bookchickdi