Latest Musings from Lauren

Welcome to the Sunday Dish!
It’s mid-January in Alabama. A little over two weeks ago, we had temperatures in the upper seventies and low eighties, then tornado watches, then snow. Temps moderated, we had some more rain and some more sun, and now we’re looking at possible snow again. What in the world?! I’m a warm weather girl, so once Christmas comes and goes, I’m usually pretty ready to hang up my winter coat for the last time and pull out the shorts and skirts. I’m not quite there yet–snow is actually pretty exciting around here!–but I can feel it coming.

With that little Alabama weather report out of the way, let’s get on to…

What I fell asleep reading last night…

I feel like a broken record−I’ve been talking about this trilogy for a while now. I’m rereading it and loving it just as much as the first time I read it. It’s a great winter series to sink into, full of Russian folktales, enchanted forests, medieval kingdoms, a forbidden romance, and one very strong girl. This is the second book in the series, and I’m savoring it.

Book I have my eye on…

I’ve read several books by Jillian Cantor and I’ve loved them. This is her next novel, a twist on The Great Gatsby told from the women’s points of view. It releases on Feb. 1st. (Sunday Dish readers: In two weeks, I’m posting my first interview in the newly resurrected Bookish People Interviews, and it’ll feature Jillian Cantor! Don’t forget to check back here to read that fun Q&A!)


A link or two…

  • For a few years now, I’ve been trying to remember the name of a particular book I read when I was in middle school but I’ve had no luck. I ran across this helpful website with resources for people trying to find titles of long-ago favorite reads! If you find yourself trying to remember an old book title, this may help.
  • This cool graphic shows you the most popular books checked out in libraries all over the country in 2021. How many of these most-checked-out books have you read? It’s also quite apparent that my kids aren’t the only ones obsessed with Big Nate, Dog Man, and Wimpy Kid!

Don’t forget about my Bookish People interview in two weeks with Jillian Cantor. It’ll be right here on the blog!

Hope you have a great start to this next week!


  1. Margaret Phillips Hardy on January 29, 2022 at 7:29 pm

    My daughter is reading Hideaway and tells me there is someone named Mags in the story -( my name); someone named Sara (my mother’s name) AND people whose last name is BUSBEE ( my mother’s maiden name). Where did you get these names?? Busbee is an old southern name (mostly North Carolina) and Raleigh’s Oakwood Cemetery is filled with my ancestors!!!

    What are the odds?

    • Lauren on January 30, 2022 at 1:51 pm

      What are the odds, indeed! The names just popped into my head as I was creating the characters. I don’t know a Mags, and though I know a couple Saras and have heard the last name Busbee, I didn’t use those names for any specific reason except they seemed to fit the people. I promise I haven’t been stalking your family!! What a small world it can be. I hope your daughter enjoyed The Hideaway!

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