It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

The Its Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at Book Journey.


Thank you to all those who offered their condolences on the passing of my grandfather. His funeral was held during the week and I reluctantly said goodbye to a wonderful man.

It’s the first Monday of the month  so time update my challenge progress.


The Eclectic Reader Challenge 6/12

Australian Women Writer’s Challenge 56/50

Aussie Author Challenge 5/12

What I Read Last Week

Wildlife by Fiona Wood

No Safe Place by Jenny Spence

Destiny Road by Melissa Wray

The Look of Love by Bella Andre

Three Hours Late by Nicole Trope

The Erma Bombeck Collection

New Posts

(click the titles to read my reviews)

Review & Giveaway: Wildlife by Fiona Wood ★1/2

Review: Flame Tree Hill by Mandy Magro 1/2

Review: No Safe Place by Jenny Spence 1/2

Review: The Look of Love by Bella Andre

Q&A with Bella Andre

Review & Giveaway: Destiny Road by Melissa Wray 1/2

What I Am Reading Today

Assisted by IVF, Jessica and Matt have four beautiful children, and they donate a leftover embryo to a childless couple. Seven years later, grief stricken after the death of their youngest child, their marriage is breaking down. Then a new girl starts at the children’s school, and Jessica realises this child, Mia, is her biological offspring; born from that embryo years before. Supported by her friends Georgia and Max, and her sister, Abby-who runs an orphanage in Thailand- Jessica struggles with her love for the troubled Mia, who looks so like her own children. Sisters of Spicefield explores friendship, grief and family, as one woman unpacks the secrets that might just make a broken life worth living again.

What I Plan To Read This Week

(click the covers to view at Goodreads)

Haunted by a life of violence and as proficient with languages as she is with knives, Vanessa Michael Munroe, chameleon and hunter, has built her life on a reputation for getting things done—dangerous and often not-quite-legal things. Born to missionary parents in lawless Africa, taken under the tutelage of gunrunners, and tortured by one of the jungle’s most brutal men, Munroe was forced to do whatever it took to stay alive. The ability to survive, fight, adapt, and blend has since taken her across the globe on behalf of corporations, heads of state, and the few private clients who can afford her unique brand of expertise, and these abilities have made her enemies. On a busy Dallas street, Munroe is kidnapped by an unseen opponent and thrust into an underground world where women and girls are merchandise and a shadowy figure known as The Doll Maker controls her every move. While trusted friends race to unravel where she is and why she was taken, everything pivots on one simple choice: Munroe must use her unique set of skills to deliver a high-profile young woman into the same nightmare that she once endured, or condemn to torture and certain death the one person she loves above all else.  Driven by the violence that has made her what she is, cut off from help, and with attempts to escape predicted and prevented, Munroe will hunt for openings, for solutions, and a way to strike back at a man who holds all the cards. Because only one thing is certain: she cannot save everyone.

The first memoir of its kind, Confessions of a Sociopath is an engrossing, highly captivating narrative of the author’s life as a diagnosed sociopath. She is a charismatic charmer, an ambitious self-promoter, and a cunning and calculating liar. She can induce you to invest in her financial schemes, vote for her causes, and even join her in bed. Like a real-life Lisbeth Salander, she has her own system of ethics, and like Dexter, she thrives on bending and occasionally breaking the rules. She is a diagnosed, high-functioning, noncriminal sociopath, and this is her world from her point of view. Drawn from the author’s own experiences; her popular blog,; and scientific literature, Confessions of a Sociopath is part confessional memoir, part primer for the curious. Written from the point of view of a diagnosed sociopath, it unveils for the very first time these people who are hiding in plain sight. The book confirms suspicions and debunks myths about sociopathy, providing a road map for dealing with the sociopath in your life.

In 1964 Maggie wakes to find herself in a psychiatric ward, not knowing who she is or why she has been committed. She slowly begins to have memories of a storm and of a man called Jack and slowly the pieces of the past begin to come together… In 2008 Jonathan is struggling to put his differences with his parents aside to tell them he and his wife are expecting a baby, when a detective arrives to question him about crimes committed long ago… And as these two tales interweave, the secrets of the past, long kept hidden, start to come to light in unexpected and sometimes startling ways. The Things You Didn’t Know is a powerful novel about fatherhood and motherhood; nature and nurture; cruelty and kindness; and mental breakdown.

The most common murder victim in 19th century Australia was a baby, and the most common perpetrator was a woman. Annie Cossins pieces together the fascinating story of the most infamous legal trial in Australia to reveal an underworld of struggling mothers, unwanted babies, and a society that preferred to turn a blind eye. In October 1892, a one-month-old baby boy was found buried in the backyard of Sarah and John Makin, two wretchedly poor baby farmers in inner Sydney. In the weeks that followed, 12 more babies were found buried in the backyards of other houses in which the Makins had lived. This resulted in the most infamous trial in Australian legal history, and exposed a shocking underworld of desperate mothers, drugged and starving babies, and a black market in the sale and murder of children. Annie Cossins pieces together a dramatic and tragic tale with larger than life characters: theatrical Sarah Makin; her smooth-talking husband, John; her disloyal daughter, Clarice; diligent Constable James Joyce, with curious domestic arrangements of his own; and a network of baby farmers stretching across the city. It’s a glimpse into a society that preferred to turn a blind eye to the fate of its most vulnerable members, only a century ago.

While you are here…

Enter to Win

1 of 3 print copies of Wildlife by Fiona Wood. Australia only. Closes June 9th

1 of 3 PDF copies of Destiny Road by Melissa Wray. Open worldwide. Closes June 16th


The winner of The Yearning by Kate Belle (redraw): Samantha

The winner of Half Moon Bay by Helene Young: Heidi

Thanks for stopping by, I’ll be along to visit you shortly!



18 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rose Milligan
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 10:24:58

    The Baby Farmers sounds interesting and shocking and scary. I’m currently reading Brave New World by Aldous Huxley and Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares.



  2. laurelrainsnow
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 11:46:51

    You have some great-looking books this week. I especially like the look of Sisters of Spicefield. And congrats on your reading progress!



  3. samstillreading
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 13:29:48

    Sorry to hear about your grandfather – grandparents are a really special part of life.
    Well done on your reading schedule though 🙂



  4. Teddyree
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 14:24:58

    Sisters of Spicefield and The Things We Never Said caught my eye, I look forward to your thoughts when I return from holidays. Hope this week is peaceful, enjoy your reads!



  5. Bettina Grissen
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 14:39:01

    You already made great progress with your challanges, well done! And some very interesting new books waiting to be read, have fun with those.
    Have a good week and kind regards,



  6. Leeswammes
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 18:36:18

    Have a good week, Shelleyrae.



  7. readerbuzz
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 20:55:07

    Confessions of a Sociopath looks very, very scary.

    Here’s my It’s Monday!



  8. carfor12
    Jun 03, 2013 @ 23:57:42

    My condolences on the loss of your grandfather. Sisters of Spicefield looks intriguing. See my current read here:



  9. Jennifer
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 00:41:42

    I’ve been curious about Confessions of a Sociopath. It sounds crazy, scary, interesting!

    Omg The Baby Farmers! That sounds incredibly interesting. Wow. Can’t wait to hear what you think!

    Have a great week 🙂



  10. yvonne473
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 06:56:52

    You always have such a great list of books! Have a great week!



  11. Dollycas
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 07:10:02

    Sending you a big hug. I know you cherish the memories you have of your grandfather.

    Hope this week is easier.



  12. Mystica
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 08:13:06

    A nice mailbox! enjoy them all.



  13. fanficfan44
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 10:00:21

    Some really interesting reads. Psychology Today recently did an article about the sociopath next door. Have to look for the book.



  14. Audrey (Bibliosaurus Text)
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 11:13:01

    Confessions of a Sociopath looks like my kind of book. I’ll be eager for your review.

    So sorry to hear about your grandfather. Virtual hugs.



  15. Nise' (Under the Boardwalk)
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 11:28:40

    The Things We Never Said has my attention. Off to check out your review for The Look for Love.



  16. Celeste
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 15:59:38

    Wow you got some awesome books on your list. Sisters of Spicefield and The things we never said are two books that sure seems real interesting, I guess I will be adding those to my TBR list 🙂
    I will go check out your reviews and see what will “hook” me. Thanks for sharing and happy reading 🙂



  17. Shannon (Giraffe Days)
    Jun 05, 2013 @ 04:25:41

    I’m sorry to hear about your grandfather, Shelleyrae.

    You’ve made phenomenal progress on your reading goals – not that I’m surprised! I’m not yet at 90 books but I might still make my goal of meeting 1000 reviews by the end of the year, I only have to review another 60 books this year.

    Interesting books on your list! I was quite drawn to the sociopath memoir – my Nanna is a bit of a sociopath and had us all caught up in her manipulations for decades. My dad no longer speaks to her, which is sad but sadly necessary.

    The Baby Farmers sounds fascinating but also terrifying, like the kind of book that will make me cry the whole way through (inadvertently I’m sure!). But such an important story to tell.

    Have a great week!



  18. Jay Riv (@jljaina)
    Jun 07, 2013 @ 07:02:45

    Never heard of any of these books before but the titles of a couple sound interesting enough I will have to look them up.
    my Monday post



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