Thursday, September 14, 2017

Banned Book Week Giveaway!!!!

Welcome to the
This hop starts on September 15th and ends on September  30th
This hop is hosted by BookHounds

My Giveaway:
Amazon Synopsis:
Bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by Ellen Forney that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live.

I love this banned book so much that I'm giving a copy of it away. So here's what you need to do to enter this book giveaway:
1. Follow my "Mug of Moxie" blog
2. Follow "Mug of Moxie" on Facebook
3 Follow Mug of Moxie on Twitter
This is a book giveaway for US residents only
Please Include contact information(email address) in comment section
Giveaway will run from September 15th to September 30th
Winner will be chosen on the October 1st
Good Luck!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017


Here's the books that I picked up at my local library or was sent this week. 
Happy Dance!!
* The Lying Game by Ruth Ware
*The Scent of Rain by  Anne Montgomery
*The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Look for upcoming Reviews!

Saturday, September 9, 2017


The Glass Castle
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
353 Pages
March 2005

The Glass Castle is a remarkable memoir of resilience and redemption, and a look into a family at once deeply dysfunctional and uniquely vibrant. When sober, Jeannette’s brilliant and charismatic father captured his children’s imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he was dishonest and destructive. Her mother was a free spirit who abhorred the idea of domesticity and didn’t want the responsibility of raising a family.

The Walls children learned to take care of themselves. They fed, clothed, and protected one another, and eventually found their way to New York. Their parents followed them, choosing to be homeless even as their children prospered.

I loved this book so much that I'm giving a copy of "The Glass Castle" by Jeannette Walls away. This is a paperback  book right off my personal bookshelf because I want you to have the opportunity to read and hopefully love it as much as I do. So here's what you need to do to enter this book giveaway:
1. Follow my "Mug of Moxie" blog
2. Follow "Mug of Moxie" on Facebook
3. This is a book giveaway for US residents only
4. Include contact information(email address) in comment section
5. Giveaway will run until September 30th-winner will be chosen on October 1st and have 48 hours to contact me.
Good Luck!

Thursday, September 7, 2017


By A.J. Banner
204 pages
September 2015
Lake Union Publishing

Shadow Cove, Washington, is the kind of town everyone dreams about—quaint streets, lush forests, good neighbors. That’s what Sarah thinks as she settles into life with her new husband, Dr. Johnny McDonald. But all too soon she discovers an undercurrent of deception. And one October evening when Johnny is away, sudden tragedy destroys Sarah’s happiness.
Dazed and stricken with grief, she and Johnny begin to rebuild their shattered lives. As she picks up the pieces of her broken home, Sarah discovers a shocking secret that forces her to doubt everything she thought was true—about her neighbors, her friends, and even her marriage. With each stunning revelation, Sarah must ask herself, Can we ever really know the ones we love?

My Thoughts:
I'm sooooo tired of books being compared to Gone Girl! I think from now on if  a book is compared to Gone Girl I'll just avoid it. The Good Neighbor was a quick, easy read. I think it took me two evenings to zip through it. Sadly, I was really disappointed. The main character, Sarah annoyed the hell out of me. At times I wanted to scream at her for being so clueless. Her husband, Dr. Johnny McDonald was also extremely unlikable-he's one of the suspects in the crime committed(Don't worry, that's not a spoiler) but Sarah keeps going back to how much she loves, loves, loves him. But it never felt real. All the characters in the book fell flat. Even the "twist" was disappointing because it left me scratching my head? The book ended with so many unanswered questions and loose ends. It felt like the author just wanted to hurry and wrap it up really quick and be done with it--I know how she feels. In the end I'm really glad I only spent $1.99

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Movie Review-The Glass Castle AND Book Giveaway!!

The Glass Castle

Movie Synopsis: 
The Glass Castle is based on the best selling memoir by former New York Gossip columnist, Jeannette Walls. The movie flashes back and forth between the life she lives now in New York and her unconventional childhood. In it, she recalls memories of poverty, uncertainty, and neglect. As one of the four children of an abusive, alcoholic father and a selfish wanna-be artist mother. Jeannette learns to fend for herself and care for her sisters and brother at a very young age. Growing up they are moved from town to town, kept out of school, and left hungry for days at a time. 
My Thoughts: 
I read this book when it came out twelve years ago and it left a lasting mark on me. Watching the movie was an emotional roller coaster ride that left me exhausted at the end. It's a brutal portrayal of the dysfunctional family that Jeannette grew up in and the complicated relationships that she had with her parents. There are a few differences between the movie and the book that are worth noting. In the movie Jeannette's mom is shown as never working but in fact does have a teaching degree and works at the different places that they settle in. Jeannette's father also holds down a variety of odd jobs at each place they decide to temporarily live. But their nomadic lifestyle is spot on. They don't stay in one place for very long which you can see starts to take a toll on the kids. At one point in the movie Rex wakes the children in the middle of the night and quickly loads them into the back of a moving van, this includes the smallest child which is just a baby. This does happen in the book but during the wild ride the doors of the moving van fly open and the kids are almost thrown out. There are many scenes in this movie that bring you to the brink of hating Rex and everything that he has done to his family. And then he redeems himself with a tender moment of love and caring that puts a lump in your throat. Kudos to Woody Harrelson who does an excellent job playing a man that you can't bring yourself to hate. Brie Larson plays the main character, Jeannette Walls and does a fantastic job. She is the 2015 Oscar winner of the movie "Room". Brie brings the perfect balance of toughness and vulnerability to the role. What I walked away with was a movie about an extraordinary woman who against all odds and upbringing shows that regardless of where you come from you are in charge of your own journey and the direction it takes. Go see this movie! I loved this book so much that I'm giving a copy of "The Glass Castle" by Jeannette Walls away. This is a paperback  book right off my personal bookshelf because I want you to have the opportunity to read and hopefully love it as much as I do. So here's what you need to do to enter this book giveaway:
1. Follow my "Mug of Moxie" blog
2. Follow "Mug of Moxie" on Facebook
3. This is a book giveaway for US residents only
4. Include contact information(email address) in comment section
5. Giveaway will run from September 3rd-September 13th-winner will be chosen on the 14th and have 48 hours to contact me.
Good Luck!

WINNER-"Clear Your Book Shelf"

Kim Pinch has won a copy of "Humans of New York" by Brandon Stanton
She has 48 hours to confirm, if I don't hear from her a new winner will be chosen.
Thanks to everyone who participated and to BookHounds for hosting.
I've already signed up for a Halloween Hop also hosted by BookHounds. I can't wait!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017


It's the "Clear Your Book Shelf" Book Hop!
Here's your chance to win a copy of 
"Humans of New York"
Scroll down for more information.
Good Luck!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Book Review-The Rent Collector

By Camron Wright
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
288 pages

Survival for Ki Lim and Sang Ly is a daily battle at Stung Meanchey, the largest municipal waste dump in all of Cambodia. They make their living scavenging recyclables from the trash. Life would be hard enough without the worry for their chronically ill child, Nisay, and the added expense of medicines that are not working. 
Just when things seem worst, Sang Ly learns a secret about the ill-tempered rent collector who comes demanding money--a secret that sets in motion a tide that will change the life of everyone it sweeps past. 
The Rent Collector is a story of hope, of one womans journey to save her son and another womans chance at redemption. It demonstrates that even in a dump in Cambodia--perhaps especially in a dump in Cambodia--everyone deserves a second chance.

My Thoughts:
Oh my heart! "The Rent Collector" is a powerful. It will keep you thinking long after you put it down. This is a book that not only touches your heart, it opens your mind. Although "The Rent Collector" is a work of fiction, it's inspired by the lives of real people living in Stung Meanchey. The main character Sang Ly and her husband live at an actual dump site in Cambodia and survive day to day with what they are able to collect and turn in for food. Page by page you are submerged into Sang Ly's world and she immediately captures your heart with her determination, sense of humor, and wisdom. A turning point in her life happens when she realizes that the old drunk lady who comes to collect their rent each month knows how to read. With the determination that only a mother can have, she is convinced that if she learns to read she will be able to help her chronically ill child. The Rent Collector reluctantly agrees to help Sang Lee read. So begins an unusual relationship between Sang Ly, the student and Sopeap, the teacher.  Through the story we live through Sang Ly's tragedies, triumphs, hopes, dreams, and frustrations.  The story is beautifully written, there are stories within stories as Sopeap teaches Sang Ly to read and the meaning of literature. Lessons are learned as we find out that there's more than meets the eye as Sang Ly gets to know the drunk old woman known as The Rent Collector. I loved this book and plan to read another one written by the same author called The Orphan Keeper. If you're looking for a heartfelt story that will make you laugh and cry check this one out. 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop

Welcome to the
This hop starts on August 15th and ends on August 30
This hop is hosted by BookHounds
There are many blogs participating in this hop, so be sure to stop by each and enter to win!  Each has their own entry rules and geographic limits, so be sure to read the rules for each one.

My Giveaway:
To enter my giveaway you need to do the following:
1. Follow Mug of Moxie Blog
2. Follow Mug of Moxie on Face Book
3. Comment on review of this book.
4. Please enter contact information in comment section below.

This giveaway is open to US only!
Giveaway Ends  8/30/17 and open to all who can legally enter.
Must be over 16 to enter.
An email will be sent and you have 48 hours to reply or a new winner will be chosen.
The Winner will be announced within 48 hours at the end of the giveaway.
Good luck and Have Fun!!!

Sunday, August 6, 2017


If you have never heard of Humans of New York you need to go to Facebook and look it up immediately. I'm not quite sure how I heard about it but I was instantly addicted and started to follow his FB posts. The premise behind Humans of New York is that a guy goes up to random strangers in New York and asks them a question. He takes a picture of them and writes their stories. Everyone has a story to tell, right? The concept is so easy but the stories and the pictures leave an impression on your heart. Some of the stories will tickle your funny bone, while others will break your heart.

St. Martin's Press
  • October 2015
  • 432 page

Brandon Stanton says this of his project:

“Humans of New York began as a photography project in 2010.  The initial goal was to photograph 10,000 New Yorkers on the street, and create an exhaustive catalogue of the city’s inhabitants. Somewhere along the way, I began to interview my subjects in addition to photographing them. And alongside their portraits, I'd include quotes and short stories from their lives.” Taken together, these portraits and captions became the subject of a vibrant blog. HONY now has over twenty million followers on social media, and provides a worldwide audience with daily glimpses into the lives of strangers on the streets of New York City.  
This is the book that I'll be giving away during the "Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop" that will start on August 15th.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017


So, last week I was so excited to start The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin. I was a big fan of his first two books in the series. And here is the problem- the first book in the series is called The Passage and was released in 2010. The second book in the series is called The Twelve and released in 2012. This last book, the final book of the series, The City of Mirrors was released last year.
Six years has passed since I read the first book of this series and I truly don't remember a damn thing! I know the first book gets the ball rolling, introducing key characters to the series but other than! I know the second book is crucial to understanding the third book and I remember... nothing!
I limped my way through The City of Mirrors but felt lost and confused when a character reverted back to a memory or a relationship with other past characters in the last two books. Needless to say I can't review this book fairly  without going back and re-reading the first and second books of this series. I'm going to do something I have NEVER done before and reread these books. Listen, I know lots of people like to go back and re-read their favorite classics, Harry Potter, Anne of Green Gables, blah,blah, blah. I'm not on of them. Once I've read a book, good or bad, I'm done. In my opinion life is too short and there are too many good books out there to waste time re-reading something you have already been there, done that with. Luckily for me The Passage is on sale right now on Amazon for $1.99.
So, the question is--Has this ever happened to you?
Too many years have passed between books in series that you have to go back and reread? George R.R. Martin doesn't count because it's been 20 YEARS...and counting between the first book of his series, Game of Thrones and whenever he comes out with The Winds of Winter. That's the exception to the exception. I plan to probably revisit those books in my twilight years after he has wrapped everything up....hopefully before he dies. Luckily the Kindle will still be around so my  old, fragile bones will  be able to lift his door stop of a book close to my failing eyes. On the bright side it will give me something to do in the retirement home in between bingo games.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

PODCAST ALERT-My Favorite Murder

One of my favorite things to do when I'm cooking dinner, cleaning, or painting(no, I'm not an artist, I just have a sick addiction to painting rooms in my house and then deciding I hate the color and repainting.) Anyways, that is a whole other post for another day or something I need to talk to my therapist about.
So, let me tell you one of my favorite podcasts to listen to while I do said things above. It's called My Favorite Murder hosted by these two great gals- Georgia Hardstark and Karen Kilgariff.
Here's what it's about-
My Favorite Murder is a hit true-crime comedy podcast that came out in early 2016. The show has broken download records and sparked an enthusiastic, interactive fan base who have come out in droves to support this podcast on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, merchandise sales, and attend sold shows during their nation wide tour going on right now.
It's a top 10 regular on iTunes' comedy podcast chart and has been featured in Entertainment Weekly, The Atlantic, Nylon, and Rolling Stone magazines.
Trying to explain the appeal of this podcast to friends, family, and strangers is a bit tricky. How can you make murder funny? I find myself stumbling over the words to describe why I love these ladies and the stories they tell. The topics and the stories they chose to tell are interesting, sometimes horrific, but always have a dash of humor mixed in.
The Daily Dot says"It doesn't have the distanced view that many true-crime shows do. It revels in it's curiosity, outrage, disgust, humor and imperfection. They are always very sensitive about the victims of the murder or the crime committed while telling the story, but have a great way of calling out the person who committed the crime or murder. While the Huffington Post sums up the podcast in these words. "There's no denying that 'comedy podcast' and 'murder' is an odd coupling, but their popularity suggests the show taps into a niche: people who want to indulge in the gruesome realities of the world."
Again, it's hard to explain---either you get it or you don't. But download their podcast on your phone and give the first 2 episodes a try. Either you will love them or decide it's not your cup of tea.
If you decide to pass on this particular podcast but love true crime I have some other ones I'll give a shout out to in a blog post down the road.
Listener Alert- These ladies use a lot of colorful language while telling their stories so don't have your littles running about while you take a listen. No one whats to hear your 3 year old throw the F-Bomb out at story time at the local library.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017


GEEK LOVE by Katherine Dunn
Publisher: Vintage
368 Pages

Geek Love is the story of the Binewskis, a carny family whose mater- and paterfamilias set out–with the help of amphetamine, arsenic, and radioisotopes–to breed their own exhibit of human oddities. There’s Arturo the Aquaboy, who has flippers for limbs and a megalomaniac ambition worthy of Genghis Khan . . . Iphy and Elly, the lissome Siamese twins . . . albino hunchback Oly, and the outwardly normal Chick, whose mysterious gifts make him the family’s most precious–and dangerous–asset. 
As the Binewskis take their act across the backwaters of the U.S., inspiring fanatical devotion and murderous revulsion; as its members conduct their own Machiavellian version of sibling rivalry, Geek Love throws its sulfurous light on our notions of the freakish and the normal, the beautiful and the ugly, the holy and the obscene. Family values will never be the same.

My Thoughts: 
Wow! Where do I start?
This book came highly recommended from a co-worker. And you know there's no better source of a good read than from a friend. About 50 pages in I was thinking"What the actual hell??!!"
BUT Geek Love is like the car crash you see on the freeway--you want to look away but you can't! So I continued to turn page after page and read about this horrific and fascinating book. The Binewskis are the most dysfunctional family you will ever have the pleasure and curse of knowing. Art and Lily, owner of the Binewski's Fabulon, a traveling carnival, decide to breed their own freak show by creating genetically altered children through the use of experimental drugs.
The story is told from Olympia point of view. She is one of Art and Lily's children that happens to be a hunch back albino dwarf who "worked" at the carnival growing up.
 Her tale of growing up in the Binewskis family and carnival life is bizarre, dark, and sometimes humorous.
After finishing Geek Love I had to do some research on the author--Where in the world did this story come from? Katherine Dunn says the idea came to her after her young son refused to join her on a walk through a famous rose garden in Portland. Inspired by the diverse blooms she wondered, what if she could have bred a more obedient boy? She dismissed the thought and decided that flaws were more fascinating than perfection and it would be more interesting to go in an entirely different direction. She starting thinking about freaks and mutations who were not considered desirable and Geek Love was born. In 1989 Geek Love became a National Book Finalist and went on to sell hundreds of thousands of copies.
I can promise you that if you decide to give Geek Love a chance you will be left with an memorable, incredibly imaginative story that will have you thinking about the Binewski family and it's characters for years to come.

Monday, July 10, 2017

BOOK REVIEW-Truly, Madly, Guilty

TRULY, MADLY, GUILTY by Liane Moriarty
432 Pages

Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?
In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty turns her unique, razor-sharp eye towards three seemingly happy families.
Sam and Clementine have a wonderful, albeit, busy life: they have two little girls, Sam has just started a new dream job and Clementine, a cellist, is busy preparing for the audition of a lifetime. If there’s anything they can count on, it’s each other.
Clementine and Erika are each other’s oldest friends. A single look between them can convey an entire conversation. But theirs is a complicated relationship, so when Erika mentions a last minute invitation to a barbecue with her neighbors, Tiffany and Vid, Clementine and Sam don’t hesitate. Having Tiffany and Vid’s larger than life personalities there will be a welcome respite.
Two months later, it won’t stop raining, and Clementine and Sam can’t stop asking themselves the question: What if we hadn’t gone?
In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty takes on the foundations our lives: marriage, sex, parenthood, and friendship. She shows how guilt can expose the fault lines in the most seemingly strong relationships, how what we don’t say can be more powerful than what we do, and how sometimes it is the most innocent of moments that can do the greatest harm.

My thoughts on Truly,Madly,Guilty:
I have read several of New York Times best selling author, Liane Moriarty's books and thoroughly enjoyed them. I liked The Husband's Secret, Big Little Lies(Now an HBO Limited series starring Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley), What Alice Forgot, The Hypnotist's Love Story, and Three Wishes. Each of them had a great plot and a story that ran along smoothly. Her stories have made me turn page after page well into the night. BUT sadly this book missed the mark for me. NO SPOILER ALERTS REVEALED: There is such a BIG build up to the events the the night in question that when all is finally revealed 3/4 into the book the incident feels like a balloon that lost it's helium and becomes a flaccid, limp, sad thing. The whole book feels like a giant tease with chapters skipping around to the three families involved in present time(recovering)and then back to the the day of the BBQ where so much of nothing is revealed until you are mostly done with the book. ARRRGGGG!  On Amazon there is a clear division of how people feel about this book, the ratings are clearly divided up between 5, 4, and 3 stars. Lots of reviews with readers writing about  mixed and frustrated emotions, so I'm glad I'm not alone in my feelings toward Truly,Madly, Guilty.
I have no doubt I will read a book by Liane Moriarty again, I have really liked her others. But if you are trying to decide whether or not to buy this on your kindle or check it out at your local library--save your money and check it out.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017


Welcome to the
This hop starts on July 2nd and ends on  July 15th
This hop is hosted by BookHounds
A Big THANK YOU to all of the bloggers that participate in these hops!   There are many blogs participating in this hop, so be sure to stop by each and enter to win!  Each has their own entry rules and geographic limits, so be sure to read the rules for each one.
Please check the blogs with a ~ mark before the names first.  Those blogs have been verified that the giveaway is up and working.

Banned Book Week Giveaway!!!!

Welcome to the BANNED BOOK WEEK GIVEAWAY HOP! This hop starts on September 15th and ends on September  30th This hop is host...