favorite reads

  • Go, Dog. Go!
  • Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book
  • The Olivia books
  • From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
  • The Phantom Tollbooth
  • Charlotte’s Web
  • The Little House books
  • Fahrenheit 451
  • Gone With the Wind
  • Winter’s Tale
  • Horse Heaven
  • Pride and Prejudice
  • To Kill a Mockingbird
  • anything by Dick Francis


recent reads

  • The Beekeeper’s Apprentice
  • The Power
  • Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
  • Lady Fortescue Steps Out
  • The Summer Wives
  • European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman
  • Wild Ride
  • The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter
  • Moxie and the Art of Rule Breaking
  • Grace Not Perfection
  • The Family Tree
  • A Piece of My Heart
  • On Second Thought
  • Chasing Lady Amelia
  • Third Son’s a Charm
  • Children of Blood and Bone
  • Wicked and the Wallflower
  • Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood
  • Where’d You Go, Bernadette
  • Bel Canto
  • You’re the Earl that I Want
  • The Underground Railroad
  • Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body
  • The Garden of Small Beginnings
  • Only a Kiss
  • Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass
  • Little Fires Everywhere
  • Homegoing
  • Tell the Wolves I’m Home
  • Only a Promise
  • The Governess Affair
  • After You
  • Never Let Me Go
  • The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D.
  • Destiny’s Captive
  • Destiny’s Embrace
  • Me Before You
  • Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine
  • Deliver Me
  • The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place
  • The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
  • Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover
  • No Good Duke Goes Unpunished
  • A Rogue by Any Other Name
  • The Countess Conspiracy
  • The Fortune Teller
  • The Suffragette Scandal
  • The Heiress Effect
  • The Duchess War
  • Oryx and Crake
  • The Day of the Duchess
  • A Gentleman Never Tells
  • The Way Life Should Be
  • A Bollywood Affair
  • Midnight in Austenland
  • The Escape
  • Only Enchanting
  • Sula
  • The Gift of Imperfection

random facts

I divide packages of M&Ms or Skittles into pairs by color before I eat them.

I have dinner with one of my oldest girlfriends every Thursday night.

I love cooking, but not fancy gourmet recipes. Southern home cooking truly is the food of the soul.

I’d be perfectly happy to wear pajamas all day, every day.

Life is best when it’s barefoot. Since I live in Florida, I’m golden 51 weeks out of the year.

I’ve gone topless in 55 degree weather. IN THE CAR, PEOPLE. Good gracious, what kind of gal do you think I am??

I’m an eternal optimist.

I’ve written seven novels. One of these days, my literary agent will sell one–or more–of them. (Eternal optimist, remember?)

After having taught in the inner city as long as I did, my perspective on race relations in this country is very different from most folks I know. So is my perspective on wealth. We have a long way to go, people. Especially Christians who ought to know better.

I miss my grandparents, and I regret that they never really got to know my fabulous kids or my wonderful husband.

I’m really proud that I was a finalist for Florida State Teacher of the Year. I’m equally happy I didn’t win, because then they take you out of the classroom for a year. Explain how that makes sense.

In my other life, I’d probably be an attorney or something. I’m glad I have this life instead.

I’m glad I got my heart broken in college because it helped me know exactly how valuable the man I married truly is.

Every charm on my bracelet has a meaning, and I wear it every day. It’s like carrying my whole life with me everywhere I go.

You want me as your Trivial Pursuit partner. My brain contains more random crap than Wikipedia.

I’m a terrible housewife. I mean well, but I’ll choose the kids or my friends over the laundry every time.

I have shagged on the beach. The South Carolina version, not the British.

I’m not as good about keeping up with my friends as I’d like.

Perfectionism is going to kill me one of these days.

I can forgive a lot of things, but basic stupidity, ignorance, bad design, or poor workmanship aren’t some of them.

I’m smart and have the Mensa card to prove it.

I think the car you drive reflects your personality. Since I’m a black turbocharged manual shift convertible Beetle, I really feel for those poor white minivan folks.

I think that at her core, every woman is the girl she was in the seventh grade. Since I had braces, glasses, and impossible hair and was the youngest, shortest kid in the class, I haul around a big ol’ ball of insecurity most of the time, despite all the outward indications that I turned out okay.

Since there is no point in fighting genetics, I don’t color my hair anymore. I am, most definitely, my father’s daughter.

When in doubt, I follow my mama’s Five Step Plan. I’d tell you what it is, but that would spoil the book.