Full Pour Review: The Paris Library

Okay, it’s official. I’m falling in love with historical fiction. The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles is another wonderful WWII novel based on the true story of the incredibly brave librarians working at The American Library in Paris who joined the resistance and fought the Nazi’s through books for their Jewish subscribers. This book was incredibly well researched, beautifully written, and I loved how clearly evident the author’s passion for this story was throughout the entire book.

BOOK DESCRIPTION: “Paris, 1939: Young and ambitious Odile Souchet has it all: her handsome police officer beau and a dream job at the American Library in Paris. When the Nazis march into Paris, Odile stands to lose everything she holds dear, including her beloved library. Together with her fellow librarians, Odile joins the Resistance with the best weapons she has: books. But when the war finally ends, instead of freedom, Odile tastes the bitter sting of unspeakable betrayal.

Montana, 1983: Lily is a lonely teenager looking for adventure in small-town Montana. Her interest is piqued by her solitary, elderly neighbor. As Lily uncovers more about her neighbor’s mysterious past, she finds that they share a love of language, the same longings, and the same intense jealousy, never suspecting that a dark secret from the past connects them.

A powerful novel that explores the consequences of our choices and the relationships that make us who we are—family, friends, and favorite authors— The Paris Library shows that extraordinary heroism can sometimes be found in the quietest of places.”

The characters in this story are absolutely wonderful and will tug at your heartstrings. I adored Odile so much. Her bravery, resilience, and intelligence were absolutely captivating and inspiring. Odile began the story as a young and naive woman who wasn’t exposed to many dangers of the world but we were blessed to see how much she grew as a character and into a powerful force to be reckoned with. The unlikely friendship between Lily and Odile was something I enjoyed too and I loved how much they helped one another overcome serious pain they’ve carried for a long time, transforming into better people because of it.

My favorite part about the characters though are that several of these characters are in fact the real names and backgrounds of the individuals working at the library during WWII. The authors note at the end of the story had a ton of fascinating information about these characters, making this story even more magical.

While this book addresses a lot of heartbreaking topics such as grief, loss, betrayal, and violence, there are also a lot of joyful moments about friendship, hope, love and forgiveness. If you’re looking for a slow paced, but highly enjoyable, WWII story that’s unique, exciting and heartwarming, I highly encourage you to check out The Paris Library, coming out 2/9. I can’t recommend it enough.

Thank you so much Atria and NetGalley for gifting me this wonderful eARC in exchange for my honest review 💛


BEER RECOMMENDATION: The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles is best paired with Chai Milk Stout (Nitro) by Left Hand Brewing Company. This delicious beer is incredibly smooth and tastes just like a chai latte 🍻

Full Pour Review: Everybody (Else) Is Perfect

Prior to reading this book, I had no idea who Gabrielle Korn was. I just happened to stumble across her book on NetGalley and decided to request it because it sounded interesting. I’m happy that I did, because getting to discover Gabrielle’s existence was a highlight of 2020- not only is this girl hilarious, smart, witty, and a total fucking badass, but she is vulnerable and real and discusses a lot of important topics such as sexuality, feminism, racism, eating disorders/body dysmorphia, mental healthy, misogyny and more.

BOOK DESCRIPTION: “Gabrielle Korn starts her professional life with all the right credentials. Prestigious college degree? Check. A loving, accepting family? Check. Instagram-worthy offices and a tight-knit group of friends? Check, check. Gabrielle’s life seems to reach the crescendo of perfect when she gets named the youngest editor-in-chief in the history of one of fashion’s most influential publication. Suddenly she’s invited to the world’s most epic parties, comped beautiful clothes and shoes from trendy designers, and asked to weigh in on everything from gay rights to lip gloss on one of the most influential digital platforms.

But behind the scenes, things are far from perfect. In fact, just a few months before landing her dream job, Gabrielle’s health and wellbeing are on the line, and her promotion to editor-in-chief becomes the ultimate test of strength. In this collection of inspirational and searing essays, Gabrielle reveals exactly what it’s truly like in the fashion world, trying to find love as a young lesbian in New York City, battling with anorexia, and trying not to lose herself in a mirage of women’s empowerment and Instagram perfection.

Through deeply personal essays, Gabrielle recounts her struggles to reconcile her long-held insecurities about her body while coming out in the era of The L Word, where swoon-worthy lesbians are portrayed as skinny, fashion-perfect, and power-hungry. She takes us with her everywhere from New York Fashion Week to the doctor’s office, revealing that the forces that try to keep women small are more pervasive than anyone wants to admit, especially in a world that’s been newly branded as woke.”

I really enjoyed learning about Gabrielle’s life and reading these essays. Gabrielle is raw, real and relatable and I applaud her for everything that she stands for. Her work ethic, courage and strong desire to stand up for others and for equality is truly inspiring and I loved reading her ideologies on so many relevant complex issues. Her essays about body image really resonated with me and were a bit triggering, yet healing in a way, due to forcing me to unbury some of my own past personal experiences with disordered eating, not realizing until now what it truly was. What I loved most about this book was that it felt like I was having a deep conversation with a best friend over champagne.

Gabrielle’s voice is a force to be reckoned with and the world will be a better place simply because she exists. I personally can’t recommend this book enough. Everybody (Else) Is Perfect comes out on 1/26 💛 thank you so much Atria Books and NetGalley for gifting me this eARC in exchange for my honest review.


BEER RECOMMENDATION: Everybody (Else) Is Perfect by Gabrielle Korn is best paired with Rainbow Sherbet by Prairie Artisan Ales. This highly enjoyable sour ale is brewed with raspberries, oranges and pineapple 🍻

Full Pour Review: Lana’s War

I really enjoy a good World War II historical fiction story and Lana’s War by Anita Abriel definitely did not disappoint! This was a captivating story that takes place during WWII on the French Riviera with intriguing characters and wonderful imagery.

BOOK DESCRIPTION: “Paris 1943: Lana Antanova is on her way to see her husband with the thrilling news that she is pregnant. But when she arrives at the convent where he teaches music, she’s horrified to see Gestapo officers execute him for hiding a Jewish girl in the piano.

A few months later, grieving both her husband and her lost pregnancy, Lana is shocked when she’s approached to join the resistance on the French Riviera. As the daughter of a Russian countess, Lana has the perfect background to infiltrate the émigré community of Russian aristocrats who socialize with German officers, including the man who killed her husband. 

Lana’s cover story makes her the mistress of Guy Pascal, a wealthy Swiss industrialist and fellow resistance member, in whose villa in Cap Ferrat she lives. Together, they gather information on upcoming raids and help members of the Jewish community escape. Consumed by her work, she doesn’t expect to become attached to a young Jewish girl or wonder about the secrets held by the man whose house she shares. And as the Nazis’ deadly efforts intensify, her intention to protect those around her may put them all at risk instead.”

There were quite a few things that I really liked about this book. First, I enjoyed the fact that this book started off at a really fast pace, making this a fairly quick read. Within the first few pages, Lana’s world comes crashing down when she experiences the death of her husband and her unborn child at the exact same time. Shortly after, she receives an offer to join the resistance on the French Riviera that will change her life forever and then we immediately get to join Lana on her new adventure, which is regularly packed with surprises.

Second, the imagery. Anita Abriel did a fantastic job at illustrating both stunning landscapes and heartbreaking scenes in this book, allowing me to feel immersed in Lana’s world.

Third, the characters. I absolutely adored Lana and her bravery. She experienced such tragic loss and it was liberating to witness her strength and resilience from this loss, and ultimately helping to honor her late husbands life by carrying out his mission of protecting Jewish families from the Germans. Her heart was also incredibly pure and kind, and I love how her relationship developed with Odette, a young Jewish girl, throughout the story. I also really liked Guy Pascal and the relationship he developed with Lana.

Finally, the ending. I thought Anita Abriel did a wonderful job at tying up all of the loose ends. While I would have appreciated more focus on Guy and Lana’s relationship, that ultimately wasn’t the point of this story and I was still satisfied with the way it ended- it was beautiful and heartbreaking, yet fulfilling all at once.

If you’re looking for a new historical fiction story, or are relatively new to historical fiction and trying to step out of your comfort zone, I recommend checking out Lana’s War by Anita Abriel, coming out 1/12. Thank you so much to Atria Books and NetGalley for gifting me this eARC in exchange for my honest review.


BEER RECOMMENDATION: Lana’s War by Anita Abriel is best paired with Apple Pie Blonde Ale by Flying Dog Brewery. This highly enjoyable seasonal blonde ale is brewed with apples, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, vanilla and lactose 🍻

Full Pour Review: Cobble Hill

RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

Growing up, I was a huge fan of the Gossip Girl series so when I discovered that Cecily von Ziegesar had written a new novel, Cobble Hill, I immediately requested a copy of it on NetGalley.

BOOK DESCRIPTION: Welcome to Cobble Hill. In this eclectic Brooklyn neighborhood, private storms brew amongst four married couples and their children. There’s ex-groupie Mandy, so underwhelmed by motherhood and her current physical state that she fakes a debilitating disease to get the attention of her skateboarding, ex-boyband member husband Stuart. There’s the unconventional new school nurse, Peaches, on whom Stuart has an unrequited crush, and her disappointing husband Greg, who wears noise-cancelling headphones—everywhere.

A few blocks away, Roy, a well-known, newly transplanted British novelist, has lost the thread of his next novel and his marriage to capable, indefatigable Wendy. Around the corner, Tupper, the nervous, introverted industrial designer with a warehose full of prosthetic limbs struggles to pin down his elusive artist wife Elizabeth. She remains…elusive. Throw in two hormonal teenagers, a ten-year-old pyromaniac, a drug dealer pretending to be a doctor, and a lot of hidden cameras, and you’ve got a combustible mix of egos, desires, and secrets bubbling in brownstone Brooklyn.

Smart, sophisticated, yet surprisingly tender, Cobble Hill is highly entertaining portrait of contemporary family life and the colorful characters who call Brooklyn home.

I’m going to be completely honest. While I did not go into this story with any expectations or hope that it would be similar to Gossip Girl, I wasn’t totally impressed by this story. I didn’t hate it by any means, but I didn’t love it- I simply just found it okay. Even though I didn’t particularly love or feel super invested in any of the characters, I definitely found them to be entertaining and was intrigued on where the story was headed, as there were several bizarre scenes and interactions that made me laugh. All of the characters are intertwined in some way, and it was fun to see how all of their paths crossed throughout the book. I enjoyed that the story was told from multiple POV’s, including some of the kids.

If you’re hoping for something similar to Gossip Girl, you will not find that here. However, if you’re a fan of Cecily von Ziegesar and looking for a quirky, light hearted book that will make you laugh and can be read pretty quickly, I recommend checking out Cobble Hill, hitting shelves on November 10th. Thank you so much to NetGalley and Atria Books for gifting me this eARC in exchange for my honest review!


BEER RECOMMENDATION: Cobble Hill by Cecily von Ziegesar is best paired with Dunkin’ Jelly Donut IPA by Harpoon Brewery. Brewed with real Dunkin’ donuts and raspberry purée, this slightly hazy IPA has bright notes of jelly and citrus from the addition of fruit-forward Hüll Melon and Citra hops 🍻

Full Pour Review: The Simple Wild

RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

WOW, you guys… I am speechless. I went in to this book with high expectations due to all of the praise this book has received on Bookstagram and without a doubt, The Simple Wild absolutely lived up to the hype and is one of the best books I’ve read this year. I can’t even begin to describe all of the feelings K.A. Tucker made me feel with this one, but it was a wild ride and now I DESPERATELY need to get my hands on Wild At Heart.

24 years ago, Susan Fletcher left her husband Wren and life in Alaska to return home to Toronto with their 2 year old daughter, Calla. During those 24 years, Calla has neither returned to Alaska or seen her father. Now, 26 years old, Calla finds out that her father has been diagnosed with lung cancer and decides to fly to Alaska to meet her dad and reconnect with him in the remaining time he has left. During her time in Alaska, she meets Jonah, who lives next door to her father and helps him run his charter plane company, Alaska Wild. While Calla initially struggles to adjust to the vastly different life in Alaska, Jonah can’t imagine living anywhere else or adapting any other lifestyle. Calla thinks that Jonah is a brooding, stubborn asshole and Jonah thinks that Calla is way too pampered to handle life in Bangor. Determined to prove him wrong, Calla and Jonah wind up forming a bond that slowly develops into a romantic relationship- one that Calla is too scared to pursue long term out of fear of choosing the same path that her parents attempted, and failed at, many years ago.

There are so many things that I LOVED about this book: the budding relationship between Calla and Wren, the friendship of Agnes and Maybel, the steamy romance and witty banter of Calla and Jonah, the Alaska Wild family, the unwavering sense of understanding from Simon, Calla’s growth and maturity during her time in Alaska with her father, the love between Wren and Susan… I could honestly go on and on. K.A. Tucker is an incredible writer and storyteller- this story left me utterly floored and the ending was incredibly heart wrenching yet satisfying, and left me immediately wanting more.

This book deserves all of the stars. If you’re looking for an incredible story with romance, complex relationships, family drama, and a beautiful journey of self-discovery that will leave you breathless, make you smile, cry, laugh and cheer, The Simple Wild is your next must-read.


BEER RECOMMENDATION: The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker is best paired with Dragon’s Milk White by New Holland Brewing. Dragon’s Milk White is a light and smooth bourbon barrel aged white stout with notes of coffee, vanilla, cocoa and oak🍻

Full Pour Review: In Five Years

RATING: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5

I absolutely adored In Five Years by Rebecca Serle and found it impossible to put down. This beautiful story is about love and friendship and will leave you with a beautiful, unexpected ending. It was such a lovely distraction from the stress and uncertainty of everything going on in the world today.

Dannie Kohan lives her life by numbers and has a very thorough plan and vision of what she expects her life to be like in five years. One day, she gets to check off two of the milestones within her plan when she accepts her dream job as a corporate lawyer at Wachtell and accepts a dream marriage proposal from her boyfriend David. That evening, Dannie falls asleep perfectly content knowing that her life is going exactly as planned. Suddenly, she awakens five years in the future on December 15, 2025. She is in a totally different apartment with a completely different man and a new ring on her finger. She spends one hour in this incredibly vivid premonition before waking back up in her and David’s apartment home just before midnight, completely shaken by this unforgettable vision. Four and a half years later, she encounters the man from her vision in a completely unexpected way, and makes a point to do everything in her power to stop this premonition from happening.

Rebecca Serle is an amazing writer and I thought she did a wonderful job with the story plot and character development. While the book is written from the perspective of Dannie, each of the main characters are developed so well that I did not feel like I was missing out on anything from there not being multiple perspectives and it made the build up to the surprise factor in this story that much better. I loved that the main characters were all so relatable and that I was able to fall in love with each of them. The raw emotions demonstrated by Dannie and Bella in regards to the beauty and heartbreak that come with love, friendship, destiny and finding our purpose resonated so much with me. While I wouldn’t change anything about the way the story was written, I still can’t help but think that it would’ve been interesting to witness Bella’s perception of the friendship and various events in the book.

This was one of the purest, most heartwarming books I have read in a long time and I loved the surprise turn that this book took, steering away from being your typical love story. Not only will this story make you laugh, cry, and fall in love with every single character; it will leave a beautiful impression on you about the meaning of destiny, friendship, and love. I honestly couldn’t recommend this book enough 💛


BEER RECOMMENDATION: In Five Years is best paired with Bonedagger by Burial Beer Co. This highly enjoyable American Pale Ale is made from Simcoe, Idaho 7 and Citra hops and double dry-hopped with Lupulin Powder. Bonedagger produces a mildly sweet taste due to the citrus, wheat and peach flavors with a nice light bitterness at the end to balance it out 🍻