♡ Go To ♡


Beautiful home library and reading room

 Come on in and kick off your shoes!
Authors, links, lists & news -
  And lots of helpful, piffy reviews
So grab a drink, find a comfy chair -
  We have a lot of books to share.

What makes RJ's Views special?
"Old School Values!" Integrity, honesty, and respect were more than words - they had real world meaning. Back before signing your life away to make a purchase, you simply made the deal, shook hands and trusted the other person to follow through. . .based solely on their word. My GrandPa said 'keep your word and your conscience clean.' I started this blog with two goals . . .To share with readers the kind of review my book club wanted, but rarely found and stay true to my upbringing.

These days the values and standards passed on to me are called "old school." That's okay!  Because out with the old and in with the new does not and should not apply to everything. Over the last ten years, I have read a ton of books, met lots of terrific people and built a reputation my Grandparents would be proud of.

We have fun here too. There are lists of best sellers, children's choices, educators favorites, classics, must reads, and banned book lists. My Mission Statement is still here. The original. To look pretty and celebrate holidays the decorations around here change, but the heart of the site, the content of my statement, remain unchanged. I invite you to read it. 

I'm happy you stumbled upon our little blog. I hope you find the atmosphere relaxed and enjoyable. I've designed the site to read like conversations between friends. Entertaining AND informative. See ya soon!

Bookmark this page...with a click you can pull up a comfy chair and chatter awhile.


Due to the corona  

  This site will be 

Closed until 8/8/20   

I realize my position and personal opinions will be viciously attacked by trollers and those seeking to attack and silence conservatives -- 

I was raised to be careful when speaking, quick to listen, and slow to anger.  If only everyone would do these things our country would not divided, my grandkids wouldnt be afraid, and we could resolved our issues. Attacking, assaulting, looting, -- how do any of these help any group?? It doesnt. 

  R UCheck this out....Ready ?

 Crooked Verse by Preston and Child      https://www.davidbaldacci.com/

Hollywood Park      The Dead Don’t Sleep

 Visit RJ on GoodReads


 RJ's View is Happy To Shine the

 Stay safe out there!

Banned? ? Really ? ?
 Banned Book Week
Banned Book Week  -  Sept 27 - Oct 3, 2020
Top 11 Most Challenged Books of 2018:
  1. George by Alex Gino
    Reasons: banned, challenged, and relocated because it was believed to encourage children to clear browser history and change their bodies using hormones, and for mentioning “dirty magazines,” describing male anatomy, “creating confusion,” and including a transgender character
  2. A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo by Jill Twiss, illustrated by EG Keller
    Reasons: banned and challenged for including LGBTQIA+ content, and for political and religious viewpoints
  3. Captain Underpants series written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey
    Reasons: series was challenged because it was perceived as encouraging disruptive behavior, while Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks-A-Lot was challenged for including a same-sex couple
  4. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
    Reasons: banned and challenged because it was deemed “anti-cop,” and for profanity, drug use, and sexual references
  5. Drama written and illustrated by Raina Telgemeier
    Reasons: banned and challenged for including LGBTQIA+ characters and themes
  6. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
    Reasons: banned, challenged, and restricted for addressing teen suicide
  7. This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki
    Reasons: banned and challenged for profanity, sexual references, and certain illustrations
  8. Skippyjon Jones series written and illustrated by Judy Schachner
    Reason: challenged for depicting stereotypes of Mexican culture
  9. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
    Reasons: banned and challenged for sexual references, profanity, violence, gambling, and underage drinking, and for its religious viewpoint
  10. This Day in June by Gayle E. Pitman, illustrated by Kristyna Litten
    Reason: challenged and burned for including LGBTQIA+ content
  11. Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
    Reason: challenged and burned for including LGBTQIA+ content
2019 Campaign Revealed

 Banned Book Week 2019
Recent NYT Best Sellers

  Combined Print & Ebook Fiction -
ONE MINUTE OUT by Mark Greaney  2. AMERICAN DIRT by Jeanine Cummins   3. WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING by Delia Owens


Hard Cover Fiction

1. WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING by Delia Owens 2. AMERICAN DIRT by Jeanine Cummins  3. THE SILENT PATIENT by Alex Michaelides

4. ONE MINUTE OUT by Mark Greaney   5.  GOLDEN IN DEATH by J.D. Robb   https://www.buzzfeed.com/alannaokun/books-for-kids?utm_term=.jmbzzyDXb#.myrrre4AX

Print & Ebook Non-Fiction -
 1. THE MAMBA MENTALITY by Kobe Bryant  2. DARK TOWERS by David Enrich  3. OPEN BOOK by Jessica Simpson with Kevin Carr O’Leary

   4. A VERY STABLE GENIUS by Philip Rucker and Carol Leonnig  5. UN-TRUMPING AMERICA by Dan Pfeiffer Image result for snoopy and linus clipart

Middle-Grade Hardcover
1. EPOCA: THE TREE OF ECROF by Ivy Claire. Created by Kobe Bryant  2. LEGACY AND THE QUEEN by Annie Matthew. Created by Kobe Bryant  3. THE WIZENARD: TRAINING CAMP by Wesley King. Created by Kobe Bryant 
4. WONDER by R.J. Palacio  5. LITTLE LEADERS by Vashti Harrison

Children's Picture Books -
1. HOW TO CATCH A UNICORN by Adam Wallace. Illustrated by Andy Elkerton  2. HAIR LOVE by Matthew A. Cherry. Illustrated by Vashti Harrison
   3. THE UNDEFEATED by Kwame Alexander. Illustrated by Kadir Nelson  4. DRAGONS LOVE TACOS by Adam Rubin. Illustrated by Daniel Salmieri
                             5. THE DAY THE CRAYONS QUIT by Drew Daywalt. Illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

Children's Series

1. DOG MAN by Dav Pilkey  2. DIARY OF A WIMPY KID written and illustrated by Jeff Kinney  3. HARRY POTTER by J.K. Rowling
        4. TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE by Jenny Han  5. THE BAD GUYS by Aaron Blabey

Get your youngster's reading -

Image result for snoopy and linus clipart
  • Notable Books List 
  • Kid Lit Collective Summer 2019 Lists
  • ALSC 2019's Summer Reading Lists
  • Reading Rockets 2019 Lists
  • Brightly's Summer Reading Lists
  • We Are Teachers 2018 Book List
  • Great School's K-5 Reading Lists
  • Read these 50 Books By Age 12
  • Elementary books by age from GoodReads
  • Literacy Association Reading by Age Lists
  • NEA suggested reading for all young people
  • Grade by Grade Reading Lists

  Adding to your TBR pile

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45755173-djinn-patrol-on-the-purple-line?from_search=true&qid=o72isObEk8&rank=1   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/49649443-things-in-jars?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=7IJjUhN1uY&rank=1   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45754807-the-jetsetters?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=Dpo306iIRL&rank=1   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43801254-the-worst-best-man?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=zAFA5Uh3Je&rank=1

Book Club Suggestions


Oprah's Book Club

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45046527-american-dirt?from_search=true&qid=vr0j71edZu&rank=1   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43984883-olive-again?from_search=true&qid=bE6CRNeQnj&rank=1   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43982054-the-water-dancer?from_search=true&qid=MqXyL7LEJY&rank=1

Welcome to the Wine Cellar

Where We Chatter about Pairing 

Maybe it's just me - but, I've always had a difficult time selecting which wine goes with what entree. Then there's special occassions and wines seem to get more specific for these. The challenge is selecting wines that pair well with the various foods. Most suggest having a selection of red and white wines available for your guests. This allows each guest to select what works best for their particular tastes. 

Wine Lover's Survival Guide to St. Patrick's Day
  Image result for wine cellar tasting area'
A long time Views visitor, asked if I was pairing our book club books with specific wines ??? It seems the trendy book club thing is to pair the book we read with a wine that compliments the book. So, I found a lil bit of information to share with you. I would love to be able to pair the book properly - because most of the time, the wine is what lured friends to join the book club in the first place. LOL

Seriously Sweet Wines https://tastehungary.com/journal/tokaji-aszu-the-story-of-the-worlds-oldest-sweet-wine/ 

Have you tried Ice Wine?

If you like sweet wine - You gotta try these.

What are you reading?

Which book(s) are on your Must read list?
Send me anmrsrj@live.com

Quotes I Love

Dr. Seuss Quotes"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go." - Dr. Seuss

"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Love is the irresistible desire to be desired irresistibly." -- Robert Frost

 Dr. Seuss Quotes"You know you're in love when you can't fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams." --Dr. Seuss

"The only way to have a Friend, is to BE one." -Ralph Waldo Emerson



Notes & Up-Dates from RJ..


Dear View'ers -

Well we are in the midst of a pandemic the likes haven't seen since the Flu Pandemic of 1917-1918. The Corona Virus has taken over in every country around the globe.   Causing an economic downturn that has millions unemployed and many businesses on the verge of bankruptcy.  So what can we do? Support the restaurants and box stores offering curbside pick up. The MOST important things we can do is WEAR A MASK anytime you are out in public.  Wear gloves when touching frequently touched items (for ex. -  touch pads to pay, grocery carts, gas pump novels, etc.). WASH YOUR HANDS often and for a minimum of 20 seconds. Use hand sanitizers when washing isn't an option. CLEAN frequently touched surfaces inside your home. And even though states are starting the re-opening process STAY HOME if you  not need to go out.

 Michael Conrad said it back the 80's (on the popular show Hill Street Blues). . ."Stay safe out there."

Keep Reading,


Favorite the site & become a View'er


  1. Love your blog. I appreciate your candor and I think your reviews are always fun to read.
    Thank you,
    Meg (OH)

  2. Thank you, Meg. I'm glad you like it! Stop by & visit often, there's a lot of good books scheduled for review.

    Happy Thanksgiving!
    :-) RJ

  3. Great review of House of Secrets. Your review of the Illuminati book was awesome. Just finished it and LOVED it. Thanks for "sharing it straight."
    George B.

  4. Thank you for introducing me to Hachette audiobooks. I had never listened to a book before I read your wp blog post years ago. I can't imagine my day now without my headphones on listening. You use headphones all the time do you have any recommendations about headphones? Thank you again.
    Happy Listener
    Glendale, CO

  5. Thank you! I'm glad you are enjoying audiobooks. Hope you come back & visit with us often. Thanks again!!

  6. Great info on Read Aloud. My son is 7 and he's loving the new read time. We still read a bedtime story too.
    Becky in Charleston SC

  7. Great site!
    Mark, CO

  8. Love your blog.
    Kathy, NC

  9. Love the new site layout!Thank you for your very nice email.

    Views follower,
    Kim's Book Club

  10. Great site! Love your reviews!

    Diane C.
    El Paso TX

  11. Great lists for kids. It's been said already but I'll say it again, Great reviews.

    Joy M.(Nevada)

  12. Love, Love, Love your site. Been a fan since the WP days.
    Beth, CT

  13. Congratulations 10 years!
    Marcus D., Greenville, SC

  14. Happy Birthday! 10 years. I'm so glad you stuck it out through your injury. I'm giving you a big high five, two thumbs up and delicious piece of bday cake. Celebrate & enjoy girl, here's to another 10 years sharing good books!

  15. Congratulations!

  16. Happy Anniversary!

  17. Happy Anniversary!

  18. Congratulations on 10 years reviewing.
    Loreta B, NC

  19. Happy 10 yr Anniversary

  20. Happy 10 yr Anniversary.
    Cellie, MO

  21. Congratulations, 10 year Anniversary.

  22. THANK YOU to everyone for all the emails and comments on the 10 year anniversary of RJ's Views. Thank You all so very much for your support, for visiting the site and making it such a success. I have enjoyed sharing books with everyone for the past ten years, and look forward to doing so for the next ten, twenty, thirty, years.



  23. Wow You have come a long way RJ! I love the new layout & the site is loaded with information. Your reviews are still incredible. The new Wine Cellar is great, I love it. One of these days we'll meet at the ITWwe've talked about a thousand times over the years, & have a glass of wine. You can pick.

  24. Great Review of Cuban Affair I haven't read DeMille's work in years. But I ordered the book after reading your review. I can't wait until 19th. Thank You
    Any good books for the holidays?

    Thank You,
    Jill, Orlando FL

  25. Agreeing with Markus *and others, thanks for helpful reviews. I am happy to have found your reviews. they are not filled with big words trying to sound important. Great job keep up good work.
    Ketki, Hyderabad, India

  26. THANK YOU. Your reviews sound great. Thank you for not using big, odd words just to try to sound important.

    Yours are helpful AND sound great. Keep doing what you're doing.

    Markus, Alberta, Canada

  27. I appreciate all of your comments and emails. Thank you to everyone from the bottom of my heart!

    I will make y'all a deal - y'all keep reading my reviews and visiting me here - and I will keep Sharing It Straight.... Okie Dokie?
    Big Smiles,

  28. I love your blog.
    Annie in Spartanburg SC

  29. Great blog. You write very good reviews.
    Magda, Calcutta

  30. I love your blog. You write some great reviews. Two enthusiastic thumbs up!
    Nancy R., Sarasota, Florida

  31. Love, love, love The Views! One of my fav book bloggers. Keep up the good work.

    Maryann L. Raleigh, NC

  32. I totally agree The new Cross is great! Audio is of the hook like the way Cross books used to be years ago. Thanks for great review. Right on point as usual.

    Mark Casper, WY

  33. Hi RJ,
    Love your blog! Your reviews are great. Are you going to review the new book about Woodstock?
    Mary, Ontario CA

  34. HI - Mary *Ontario, CA
    Thank you for commenting. I'm very happy that you Love my blog. Yes, I will be posting a review of the book soon. I am so excited to be reviewing several books from new publishers this summer. Stop by often there are lots of new books being added.
    Thanks again for your support!

  35. Hi RJ,

    Love the blog!Are you reviewing the new Patterson collaboration with Bill Clinton?
    Pat, KY

  36. Pat (KY)
    Thank you for supporting RJ's Views! I will be reviewing the audio (published by Hachette Audio)- sometime in June. Stop by and visit us often, new books are being added all the time.
    Thanks again!

  37. Hi RJ!
    I love your blog. We tried some of the wine suggestions during our last book club meeting. Everyone showed up for the first time ever and we had a blast. We served several wines but the star was the Carneros Cuvée by Gloria Ferrer. We found it through your suggested book club wine links. THANK YOU. We are reading "Circe" this month and I am hosting.
    Loretta (We Still Read book club), Akron, OH

  38. Hi Loretta (And all the members of your book club "We Still Read")
    That's wonderful! I love hearing from readers. Your "star wine" was an incredible selection. Wish I could've been there! Circe is a great choice for your book club. I hope your next meeting is even better. Let me know how it goes.
    Thank you for supporting RJ's Views!

  39. RJ,

    I have been a long time viewer from the 3rs days. Yes you have grown a lot in the last ten years but a few things have not changed. and that is a good thing. Like the reviews. They are interesting, entertaining, informative without divulging too much. You give equal opportunity to best sellers and unknown, selfpublished. Not many do that. You have maintained the integrity you wrote about in your mission statement a decade ago. That is an accomplishment and it is awesome. I look forward to another decade or two of sharing my love of books with the View. Thanks for standing up for us book lovers. I love RJ's Views. Keep up the good work.

    Merry Christmas RJ,
    Big Smiles & Best Wishes from Carrie and Doug, Illinois

  40. Merry Christmas RJ -

    I can't wait to see what we will be sharing and talking about in 2019. I have already ordered the two books you suggested for January. Judgment by J. Finder and 1st Conspiracy by B. Meltzer. I am really looking forward to those.

    Happy New Year!
    Rebecca from Nashville, TN

  41. Wow - The site looks great. Really put me in the mood for Christmas. I preordered one of the books you have suggested for January and ordered 3 others, and borrowed 2 from the Library. my TBR pile is piled high. LOL

    Thanks RJ. I've been a Viewer for five years and always love it. Keep it up girl!

    Merry Christmas,
    Loretta-Anne Pittsburgh

  42. Merry Christmas RJ!

    I love Views! I can not believe it has been a decade since I met you on MySpace. OMG remember MySpace? I am telling my age. LOL Take care, good luck with your upcoming surgery.
    Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    All the Best,
    Liz, Washington D.C.

  43. Merry Christmas RJ!

    So - how about that new Joe Finder book? You reading it? What do you think?? I am chomping at the bit for this one. We always have to wait so long for his books. Yeah, it is worth it in the end.

    Merry XMas!
    Ken Greenville, SC

  44. Merrrrryyyyyyy Christmas, RJ!

    Been great year for us readers. Sure hope 2019 will be. Good luck with your surgery. Keep us "Viewers" updated what is going on with you, ok? I mean I am sure when you awake in the recovery room your first request is your IPad so you can update your site. LOL

    Take care girlfriend. Your blog still rocks!

    Lisa Ashville, NC

  45. Merry Christmas, RJ

    We are hoping 2019 is the year of great books. We know for sure that you will share it straight about all of them. Love the site at Christmas. Always looks good!

    Happy New Year!
    Pam, Laurie, Jonah, Michelle, and Larry

  46. Great site. Intelligent, well-written reviews that I happen to agree with 90% of the time. This is a comfortable environment in which to express oneself and that too is most appreciated. Thank you for welcoming the LGBT community.

  47. Love, love, love your blog. Hope all goes well with your upcoming surgery.

  48. Hey RJ,

    I totally agree with your mission statement. We like your "small" blog. Just think when you go big time i can say i knew you way back when. Congratulations on your success.

  49. I love The Views. Your blog is awesome. Keep on keeping it real .

  50. Donald Thank you for taking time to comment. Everybody is Welcome here. I am so happy you found us --Please pass the word about our lil' blog. Thank you.

    I am thrilled you guys love the site. As for hitting the big time-- Oh how I wish we could "get discovered." Maybe one day. (Fingers crossed). But trust me -- I will be the same old me.
    Welcome--welcome--welcome to the new View'ers.

  51. I hope you come back real soon. We miss your honest, straight forward reviews. My book club checked your site all the time for ideas. We LOVE the wine with books pairing section. Hope to see you soon.