Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Searching for Paradise in Parker, PA by Kris Radish

"Radish's latest warm-fuzzy (after The Sunday List of Dreams) tracks the troubled marriage of Lucky and Addy Lipton. Lucky's Kingdom of Krap—the garage littered with dismantled appliances, an old car and every other project Lucky never finished—has brought Addy nearly to the breaking point in her stale marriage, but it's the last straw when their planned trip to Costa Rica (with its possibilities for romantic rejuvenation) doesn't happen. What ensues is a summer of separation, discovering personal desires and strong female friendships (it is, after all, a Radish book). As the summer gives way to fall, Lucky tries to win his wife back, while Addy is torn between living alone or giving the marriage another go. Girl-power readers will get a kick out of the hokey girl get-togethers, and women will surely connect with Radish's empowered femmes."

~Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Best Day of Someone Else's Life by Kerry Reichs

"Despite being cursed with a boy's name, Kevin "Vi" Connelly is seriously female and a committed romantic. The affliction hit at the tender age of six when she was handed a basket of flower petals and ensnared by the "marry-tale." The thrill, the attention, the big white dress—it's the Best Day of Your Life, and it's seriously addictive. But at twenty-seven, with a closetful of pricey bridesmaid dresses she'll never wear again, a trunkful of embarrassing memories, and an empty bank account from paying for it all, the illusion of matrimony as the Answer to Everything begins to fray. As her friends' choices don't provide answers, and her family confuses her more, Vi faces off against her eminently untrustworthy boyfriend and the veracity of the BDOYL.
Eleven weddings in eighteen months would send any sane woman either over the edge or scurrying for the altar. But as reality separates from illusion, Vi learns that letting go of someone else's story to write your own may be harder than buying the myth, but just might help her make the right choices for herself."

~ From Harper Collins
White Rose Rebel by Janet Paisley

"This richly textured historical romance from Scottish poet and short story writer Paisley reimagines the story of Col. Anne Farquharson, a real-life leader in the Jacobite uprising of 1745. When Bonnie Prince Charlie returns to Scotland in an attempt to take the throne, the English naturally seek to suppress his supporters. Aeneas McIntosh, chief of Scots Clan Chatton, reluctantly takes a commission with the English army, believing it the best way to preserve his clan and their land. His younger and far more impetuous wife, Anne, responds by joining with a former lover, Alexander McGillivray, and raising an army in support of the prince's ultimately doomed claim. Aeneas and Anne continues to love and lust after one another, despite their political differences. A complex, passionate love triangle; a realistic look at the horrific consequences of war; and a balanced, satisfying resolution mark Paisley's notable first novel."

~ Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Quiver: A Novel by Peter Leonard

"In his debut novel, Leonard (son of crime fiction master Elmore) shows more than a little promise. Katie McCall is a still-grieving widow whose past comes back to hurt her in a bizarre manner. Shortly after her husband is killed by their son in a bow-hunting accident, an ex-boyfriend and a group of thugs show up and set in motion events that will lead to a life-or-death climax. It's impossible not to compare Leonard with his famous father, and there are some similarities. The story is tight, and the descriptions of the Michigan setting ring true, whether it's the Detroit area or further upstate. The pacing is excellent, and the characters all have unique voices. What prevents the book from being outstanding is the stilted dialog, which too often sounds like a written report rather than a conversation you'd expect people to have. Still, this is an excellent debut, and one that many will likely finish in one sitting. Leonard is an author to watch...."

~ Craig Shufelt, Fort McMurray P.L., AL Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen

"Allen's second bewitching offering (after Garden Spells) is a candy jar of magical characters and mystical adventures set in an ordinary North Carolina town. At 27, Josey Cirrini is plain and just this side of plump and trying to make up for her legendary childhood temper tantrums by caring for her aging, widowed mother Margaret. Her closet features neatly stacked junk food packages and romance novels, and her life chugs along. But as the book opens, Della Lee Baker, waitress at the local greasy spoon, shows up in Josey's closet, having propped a ladder against the house and climbed silently in overnight. She's hiding from someone or something, and has no intention of leaving anytime soon. Instead, the very direct Della Lee sends Josey on a series and missions and misadventures that encourage our low self-esteem heroine to step outside her box and away from her snack-filled closet. As in Allen's previous work, there's an element of the supernatural (self-help books that literally follow one around; tears that sprout mysterious tropical flowers), and again it works. Words such as sweet, charming and delightful are weak accolades for such a pleasurable book."

~Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Scream for Me by Karen Rose

"Bestseller Rose makes her hardcover debut with this intricately plotted romantic thriller, a sequel to Die for Me (2007). Georgia Bureau of Investigation Special Agent Daniel Vartanian, having recently buried his parents, who were done in by his late serial-killer brother, Simon, looks into a series of killings that appear to copycat the brutal rape and murder of Alicia Tremaine 13 years earlier. In the course of his investigation, Daniel meets Alex Fallon, an attractive nurse who asks him to help locate her hairdresser stepsister, Bailey Crighton, who's mysteriously disappeared. In a twist, Alex turns out to be Alicia's twin sister. The romance between Daniel and Alex intensifies along with the suspense as the body count rises. This chilling novel will leave Rose's fans breathlessly anticipating her next release."

~Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Friday, May 02, 2008

The Outlander by Gil Adamson

"Set in 1903, Adamson's compelling debut tells the wintry tale of 19-year-old Mary Boulton ([w]idowed by her own hand) and her frantic odyssey across Idaho and Montana. The details of Boulton's sad past—an unhappy marriage, a dead child, crippling depression—slowly emerge as she reluctantly ventures into the mountains, struggling to put distance between herself and her two vicious brothers-in-law, who track her like prey in retaliation for her killing of their kin. Boulton's journey and ultimate liberation—made all the more captivating by the delirium that runs in the recesses of her mind—speaks to the resilience of the female spirit in the early part of the last century. Lean prose, full-bodied characterization, memorable settings and scenes of hardship all lift this book above the pack."

~ Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.