Lady in Waiting

September 23rd. 2010

Just finished reading Susan Meissner’s new historical fiction, Lady in Waiting. She’s interwoven two delicate stories of love, choices and resolution between Lady Jane Grey (famously beheaded as one of only three Tudor female rulers) and a contemporary Jane who runs an antique shop in Manhattan. This story resonated with me because of the poignant reminder love is a choice, not an emotional reaction and that even when things look desperate that women make the choices that lead (or not) to their own happiness. I could gush about the brilliant writing and deft handling of heavy emotional content, but its best if you experience it for yourself. Don’t wait for Lady in Waiting.

Sherryl Woods and those Carlton Characters

September 20th. 2010

So you remember that I’ve been exploring Amazon.com and downloading many books to my Kindle? In a fluke a few weeks ago, I found an old (ha, 2004) novel that Sherryl Woods wrote for Harlequin and downloaded (it was cheap, part of the appeal.) Within a few pages I was hooked by the refreshing characters and unusual dynamic she’d created within the bracket of a beloved aunt who raised three brothers and was now systematically marrying them off. By the conclusion of the first delightful novel, Isn’t It Rich, I was desperate to read the follow-up stories that completed the trilogy of books related to the Carlton brothers. Each one was charming and had the fun of the familiar characters bouncing between the pages that I was compelled to download them all. But to my surprise, I discovered that Mrs. Woods had written a fourth, follow-up novel that centered on the amazing aunt who’d been so generous and devoted to these brothers. Honestly, this story was the best of the lot. Sherryl Woods had created one of the strongest, most- gracious, most-complex female character that I’d read in a long time and with her story shed wonderful light on the beauty of later-in-life love. Though a bit bored by all the retelling and catching up she had to include in each book (in case a reader found just one novel and needed appropriate back story to fill in the gaps) I was enchanted by the characters, the conflicts and the settings. The resolution was a typical Harlequin-esque ending, but that’s sort of like ordering creme brulee at the end of an elegant meal–you know what your getting and you like it all the better for its sweetness.

If you get a chance, download all four of these and read them in chronological order–I did and it was one of the best mental escapes I’ve had in a while. (Just goes to show why Sherryl Woods novels tend to fly off the bookshelves–keep that in mind if you find any of her other stories.)

Isn’t It Rich, Priceless, Treasured and Destiny Unleashed.

Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt

September 12th. 2010

After a hot August morning, I wandered into Barron’s Bookstore and fingered the books stacked on their shelves. This debut novel by Beth Hoffman, Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt, was highly recommended so I added it the pile already in my arm. Having travelled this weekend, it was with some relief that I sat in the comfy rocking chair in my room and finished this delightful novel. It’s a coming of age story about a young girl utterly askew by her mother’s mental illness. Sometimes I’d laugh, sometimes I’d tear up, but I kept turning the pages fast to keep up with the wonderful women who played a part in healing Cee Cee of her scars. I recommend you indulge in this oh-so-Southern remedy for ravages left by loneliness and twisted love.

I need a good book

September 7th. 2010

Please help. The book reviewer needs a good book to read. I’ve been sampling around amazon.com lately, but nothing is grabbing my attention. Will have to head over to my favorite local bookstore, Barrons, and pick the brain of the bookvbuyer, Vickie. Maybe I’ll come home with a bag full of stories to recommend to you. Until then, tell me what you’ve been reading and loved.