On My Nightstand: February 2020

I can’t believe it’s already March! I feel like January dragged on and February flew by. This month I read some really, really good books, so I am excited to round them up for you today. I would love to know what you’re reading these days because I need some ideas on what to read next.

As is custom on these posts, I wanted to call out that I’m part of a program where Random House will send me some of their new titles each month. I’m under no obligation to post about any titles I receive, so I really can tell you my own opinion (good or bad!) about them. I’ve starred the books Random House sent me for free below. I’m so lucky to be sent books and that’s not lost on me!

You can always follow along with what I am reading in real-time over on Goodreads—feel free to friend me there! x


Morgan and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, are like most mother-daughter duos. They fight, and Morgan is determined to make sure Clara doesn’t make the same mistakes she did—especially the mistake of becoming pregnant and having a baby in high school. Tragedy strikes when Morgan’s husband and Clara’s father dies in a car accident. As the pair is grieving, Morgan discovers her husband left behind a terrible secret, one that can either divide her and Clara further or bring them together.

Would I recommend it? I liked this one a lot and thought Colleen Hoover did such a good job making you feel the character’s pain. I’ve read a few of her books and I’m amazed at how many different story types she has mastery over.


Holly Whitaker went on one too many benders and decided to seek help and quit drinking alcohol. In this book, she tells the story of her own relationship with alcohol and examines our alcohol-obsessed culture. She examines how big alcohol works to target women, the same way big tobacco did, explains the cycle of addiction and why it’s so hard to break, and looks at AA might be better suited for men than women.

Would I recommend it? I learned so much about the science behind addiction and alcoholism in this book, and it was written in an engaging, easy-to-understand way.


Tate meets airline pilot Miles in an apartment building hallway outside her brother’s home, and he’s sobbing. Tate calls her brother and he quickly realizes it’s his friend Miles, and tells Tate to let him crash on the couch for the night. Over the coming weeks, the two develop a mutual attraction. Shortly after, Miles comes home with Tate and her brother for Thanksgiving, and the two make a pact—they’ll hook up, but no one can develop feelings. Can they stay true to the rules?

Would I recommend it? This was an engaging, quick read—but pretty predictable. I still think It Ends With Us is my favorite Colleen Hoover read!


Emira takes her baby-sitting charge, Briar, to the supermarket one night and is stopped by the security guard because he thinks the African American 20-something has kidnapped the white toddler. A bystander catches the whole incident on a cell phone camera. Emira immediately calls her boss, Mr. Chamberlain, to come sort the situation out, and his wife, Alix, takes it on herself to make things right. Emira, on the other hand, just wants things to go away. Things take a turn when Alix and Emira realize they have someone in common—and lets just say, it doesn’t go well. I can’t say more without giving the plot away, but the story does a great job at exploring racism, transactional relationships, and the meaning of family.

Would I recommend it? This book made me really think about my own privilege, and I always love when books can challenge me to think about how life might be in someone else’s shoes. I enjoyed it—but I don’t think I loved this book as many others do.


Jessica Simpson holds nothing back in this raw and real memoir that begins with her examining her relationship with alcohol, and why she ultimately had to give it up. She shares about her childhood, growing up as the daughter of a preacher in Texas, her rise to fame and being pitted against Christina and Britney, her marriage to Nick Lachey and their reality show, her clothing line with Vince Camuto, her toxic relationship with John Mayer, and how she met her husband at a party at her house. She shares so much that I felt like I was reading her personal diary.

Would I recommend it? 100%—Jessica spills the tea and this memoir sucked me in from and the first page. After reading it, I went and binged watched all the old episodes of Newlyweds.


In occupied Poland during World War II, Alina has always known she was going to marry her best friend Tomasz. When the war comes, he’s sent to Warsaw and her brothers are also sent off, leaving her at home with her parents to work the farm. As the war drags on, the Nazis hold over their small village takes deeper root. One night, Tomasz comes to her window and Alina learns he’s been living in the woods behind her parent’s house, working to help Jews in hiding in the area. Fast forward to the present day, and a mom of two finds herself venturing on an unexpected journey to Poland to discover her family’s past.

Would I recommend it? Yes, especially if you love historical fiction WWII books like The Nightingale, Lilac Girls, The Alice Network, and All The Light We Cannot See


A mother and her daughter-in-law leave their marriages at the same time, hoping to break the cycle of infidelity for the next generation. They rent apartments in the same complex across the hall from each other, and create a guide for moving on, despite their ex-husbands dislike for their new beaus and persistence in trying to win them back.

Would I recommend it? This is a great, mindless plane read, but I probably wouldn’t recommend seeking this one out.


A beautiful memoir by Kreis Beall, the co-founder of the famed Blackberry Farm. She talks about her upbringing in Tennessee, and how she met her husband, Sandy, who went on to found Ruby Tuesday, a concept restaurant he based off of PJ Clarke’s on the Upper East Side of New York. She talks about the 40 houses they bought and sold over the years, including the one they loved most in Mobile, Alabama that ultimately burned to the ground. She talks about when they bought Blackberry and how they grew it into the famed resort in the Smokies it is today. She talks about her divorce, the accident that left her deaf, losing her son in a tragic ski accident, and her journey to finding faith. I could not put this one down and was sad when it was over!

Would I recommend it? ABSOLUTELY—this is one of my favorite memoirs ever.

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