*Pause for major celebration*

We are still in the first week of 2017 and I’ve managed to finish reading my first book of the year. I’m taking this as a sign that I will be incredibly productive this year and read every single title on my To Be Read list (and then some), write interesting, provocative articles and just have an overall GOOD year.

One can hope, at least.

I’m churning out I don’t know how many words per minute right now while the baby watches “Finding Dory” and the toddler plays with her toys, praying their attention stays occupied long enough for me to finish this. I’ve even had half a cup of hot coffee and already cooked and cleaned up after breakfast. So far, a productive morning. And it’s not even 9 a.m. Another good sign, perhaps.

The first title of the year was “Truly Madly Guilty” by Liane Moriarty. This is the sixth novel by the Australian writer. She just recently became big in the United States and will likely become even bigger now that one of her best-selling novels (and the first title I read of hers), “Big Little Lies” has been adapted into an HBO series starring Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon and Shailene Woodley.

Moriarty’s books are known for major twists and complex, relatable characters, told from multiple points of view that offer unique takes on the same events. “Truly, Madly, Guilty” is no different.

TMG revolves around a friendly barbecue turned nightmare for three couples and how they deal with the aftermath both collectively and individually. You don’t actually find out what happened at the barbecue until maybe three-quarters of the way through the novel, creating some delicious suspense and anticipation while you read, knowing you’re getting closer and closer to finding out what horrible thing happened to alter so many lives forever.

While this is an easy read you could easily enjoy on a lounge chair in some wonderfully warm beach setting (as I adjust to single-digit temperatures in our new home on the outskirts of Chicago…sigh), you definitely want to pay attention as you read. The most minute detail can have huge effects on character development as the story progresses.

There were definitely moments that made me mutter “oh sh–“ as I read and, as with all her books, I love how every loose end is woven together beautifully by the end of the book so everything is connected in some way.

I definitely recommend picking up this book if you love a suspenseful read revolving around the complexities of marriage, friendship and parenthood.

Next up is “Dido’s Crown” by Julie K. Rose, which is the book of the month for Wine, Women & Words.

Our not-so-puppy-sized Husky puppy has now declared it is play time and is zipping from one couch to another, racing around the living room into the kitchen, sliding into the cabinets on the tile floor and scrambling back onto the carpet to start the whole circuit again so I think it’s safe to say my writing time is up.

Welcome to 2017 and may your days this year be as productive as I hope mine will be.

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