Books I read in October…

October was a busy (and ended on a sad note) month. The good stuff: Boo Bash and Birthday celebration. The bad stuff: My dog, Zeke, died. Also it’s been 1 year since my grandmother passed away. Needless to say- October has a lot going for it; but is tinged with sadness, as well.

Through the good times and sad times- I did find time to read 8 books.

October reads:

The Mermaid Collector by Erika Marks- simply put- it was a great book. Wonderful storyline, interesting characters. And mermaids- beautiful and magical creatures. Here’s the review I posted earlier: The Mermaid Collector. If a story set in a coastal town with hints of magic and intrigue sounds good- read this book.

Ghosts of Manhattan by Douglas Brunt- tale of sex, drugs and Wall Street. Hints of a life-crisis. Nick Farmer is a likeable character- wooed by the money and power of Wall Street in his position as a bond trader at Bear Stearns. The life is getting to Nick, though. Interesting tale of Wall Street life and the choices that people make.  Here is the review of Ghosts of Manhattan that I posted previously.

New Kids on the Block: 5 Brothers and a Million Sisters by Nikki Van Noy- total fangirl moment (fangirl of the late 80’s-early 90’s). This tells the story of the past, present and future of NKOTB. Insightful take on the lives of the group- also with stories from the fans. If you loved (or still) love NKOTB- worth a read. Here is my review of New Kids on the Block: 5 Brothers and a Million Sisters.

Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio. Sarah Jio takes a tale of an event that happened many years apart- a Blackberry Winter (a late spring snowstorm) and creates a story of family, love, heartbreak, sadness, and a mystery with the characters. My review of Blackberry Winter as I previously posted.

The Guest Book by Marybeth Whalen- a story of love, forgiving others, and finding happiness. Touching story about a grown-up woman- her life is not what she thought it would be. And she wonders about the person she spent her childhood trading pictures with; but never met. Would her life be different? A Christian fiction story- interesting and an easy read. Has something for everyone.

Iced by Carol Higgins Clark- Regan is heading to spend Christmas in Aspen. She’s looking forward to skiing, enjoying some down time with family and maybe finding a hunky man. Little does she know she’ll spend more time solving a mystery of art thieves. Light, funny and fluffy.

Decked by Carol Higgins Clark- the first book in the Regan Reilly series. Regan is at a 10 year reunion for her overseas boarding school. While there, she find out that her former roommate was murdered- instead of simply run away as they had all thought. Regan is dying to solve the mystery, but due to travel plans is unable to stay behind in England. However, she need not have worried- the murder clues are following her to her next travel stop.

Laced by Carol Higgins Clark- Regan and Jack are married and celebrating their honeymoon in Ireland. Until a pair of criminals that have been taunting Jack set about to ruin the honeymoon. Will Jack and Regan be able to solve the mystery and enjoy their honeymoon? Another fun and fluffy read- Carol Higgins Clark books are easy reads- not suspenseful like her mother’s, Mary Higgins Clark.


New Kids on the Block: Five Brothers and a Million Sisters by Nikki Van Noy

New Kids on the Block. The words alone take me back to circa 1989/1990. I’m in elementary school- and I’m suffering from bad fashion choices: hair in a side pony-tail, denim shorts, Keds with floppy, push-down socks (naturally, I don’t realize that this is not fashionable until years later.) New Kids on the Block is THE band. I know the songs, have the shirts, and am in the middle of my first celebrity crush (Joe McIntyre- I even have  his stickers on the back of my favorite Nancy Drew Case Files book). Living in a small, rural town- the closest I think I’ll ever come to NKOTB is listening to the music on the tape deck and reading about them in the magazines. However, I’m wrong. NKOTB performs a concert in a town an hour away- and I, thanks to my mom, get a ticket! NKOTB was my first concert and it was memorable- for many reasons.

Seeing this book brings back the memories of NKOTB. I still remember the music. Still have the tape somewhere.

On to the actual review of the book now that you know my NKOTB memories:

Nikki Van Noy does a great job compiling stories, facts, and interesting tidbits of the early beginnings of these boys- from even before they were New Kids on the Block- to the seemingly over-night rise in star power (although, thanks to Nikki Van Noy- I now know they were not such an over-night sensation as some would have a person to believe) then the eventual dimming of the star power. Now that the band is back together, the stories of what they went through, the tidbits from the fans, the pictures- the book is worth it- whether you are a current NKOTB fan or was a fan during your childhood/pre-teen years.

Reading about how NKOTB was first marketed as a R&B group, then did the switch to Pop music- in that section, the reader begins to learn just how close they were to the point of never really making it big. Which would have been a shame- because the boys were groundbreakers for other “boy bands”; but at times were almost too forward thinking in their own approach (Case in point: Donnie wanting to be more over a “cross-over” artist. Today people pull that off, but during NKOTB rise to fame- not as many artists could do that).

During the rise of NKOTB- there was no Facebook, Twitter- actually, no internet. Facts and tidbits of information a person could find out now was not easily found out in the early 1990’s. Nikki Van Noy pieces together this book- the good, the bad, the ugly of the NKOTB, perspective and stories from fans, tales of how the lives of NKOTB have changed over the years- she takes all that and writes a book that is heartfelt, warm and caring; a book that makes the reader feel like they know the NKOTB, and brings back a sense of nostalgia for the days of “Hangin’Tough” and “You Got It (The Right Stuff).  For the real story behind New Kids on the Block (past and current stories)- I highly recommend Nikki Van Noy’s New Kids on the Block: Five Brothers and a Million Sisters.

Now, I just need to find my scrunchie and my NKOTB tape- and my trip to nostalgia-land will be complete.


*Thanks to Touchstone Books for providing me with a review copy of New Kids on the Block: Five Brothers and a Million Sisters by Nikki Van Noy. The above review is my sole opinion and thoughts.