Quinn Barton is perhaps the weakest, whiniest, most ridiculous character I have ever read. I have enjoyed so many of Beth Harbison's books, that this one was a real disappointment. On no planet would this brother vs. brother vs. female lead ever ring true or be accepted by any thinking reader. But it's the wishy washy back and forth that is really too much to take. If not for the wonderful voice of Orlagh Cassidy, this book would have been completely worthless.
I did like the book although it was predictable. (I listened to audiobook.) And I have read variations of this theme in every book Diana Palmer ever wrote for Harlequin Romance. The marriage of convenience with the husband scorning having to marry the wife over a deal or a misunderstanding is standard fodder for some romances. What set this book apart was Justine Eyre's reading. And Australian with an Italian accent was intriguing. All in all, the book was ok, but nothing special.
Hans Christian Anderson is timeless. And Julia Whelon is one of the best. Some books should be listened to, not read. This is one of them.
I loved the title of this book and I really wanted to like the story, but I got stuck in the little Southern woman's subservience to the big strong Southern selfish man. I almost quit several times. But I did stick it out and got to see the little Southern doormat wife begin her rise to the top. LeeLee Satterfield is not my favorite character of all time, but I came to respect her as she dug herself out of the hole her husband put her in. The Vermont characters are a hoot and by the end of the book I was rooting for the Southern Belled to stay in Vermont. It ended with somewhat of a cliffhanger so now I have to read the second book.
I have lived in the South my entire life. It has its own way of life. Every time I read MK Andrews books, I am reminded of people I know or grew up with. Save the Date revolves around Cara, a Savannah florist, trying to make it into the "big leagues" of Southern weddings. Her various brides and their mothers (and one notable stepmother) are just like the girls I went to high school and college with. Yes, her books are light reading, but they always make me laugh out loud .... and remember when. Though not as good as some of her earlier novels (especially Hissy Fit and Savannah Breeze), Save the Date is certainly worth reading.
LeeLee Satterfield has finally opened her restaurant, The Peach Blossom Inn, in Memphis TN. Her true love Yankee Doodle Dixie, Peter Owen, has moved to the south to be her chef and life is good. But, then, LeeLee finds out her old nemesis, Helga is suing to keep LeeLee from using the Peach Blossom name and Baker returns to try to win her back. What else can go wrong? Don't ask. Of all LeeLee and the girls' (Virginia, Alice, and Mary Jewell) adventures, the Pampered Chef Cookie Swap party was the funniest. Wonder if Hedge ever found the egg nog in the beer stein? And will Peter and LeeLee have a happy ever after or will Baker win out? And what is the future of the Peach Blossom? I almost hate to see this trilogy end. It has been very entertaining and warmed my southern heart.
Dr. Emory Charbonneau is practicing for a marathon in Atlanta by running mountain trails in North Carolina. She is found unconscious by a reclusive man who refuses to give her his name. Was her head injury an accident or was it deliberate? Who is this mystery man and why does he refuse to name himself? When Emory is returned to civilization, why is her husband playing the wronged spouse?
True to her writing style, Ms. Brown layers intrigue on top of intrigue. And then there's the twist ...
After the Harbison's so-so story in "Chose the Wrong Guy, Gave Him the Wrong Finger," I was a little apprehensive about reading "Driving with the Top Down." I needn't have worried. She's back on track. I loved the interplay between Colleen, Bitty, and Tamara. I'm hard pressed to pick my favorite character. As they travel down the east coast looking for "treasures," each they all begin to trust each other in lives they have begun to mistrust. They share there stories: Coleen, who feels she has always been her husband's second choice; Bitty, who realizes that without her husband's identity, she has ceased to exist; and Tamara, a sixteen year old who couldn't make a good decision if you put a gun to her head. This is a beautiful story of learning to trust and love again and finding the true meaning of your life. And learning to live it while you're "driving with the top down."
I loved the way the male and female voices went back and forth as they told Nick and Amy's story. After all the hype the book received, I was excited to see where the story led me. It didn't take me long to get bored. The first part of the book dragged and I almost stopped listening three or four times. But I had already invested so much time in the book, I felt like I had to keep going. I do have to say that I predicted the twist. (I had seen this in a long ago episode of The Young and the Restless soap opera.) Even so, the details were mind boggling. So I kept listening. And then came the end. What a disappointment. It's as if someone told Ms. Flynn, "you have 10 minutes to finish the book" and so she flew to the end. It ended so flat. So, nineteen hours and fourteen minutes later, I can say that I read "Gone Girl," but I can't tell you why.
The Australian narrator was amazing!
Cecilia, the perfect mother of three girls who attend St. Angela's School in Sydney, finds a letter from her husband to be read in the event of his death - only he's not dead. It contains the "husband's secret." She agrees not to read it but then she finds him looking for it in the middle of the night after unexpectedly returning from a trip to Chicago.
Tess' husband Will has decided that he is in love with Tess' beloved cousin Felicity after she loses a massive amount of weight and is not "pretty." He thinks they can all live together, Tess, Will, their son Liam, and Felicity. Tess and Liam take off for Sydney where Tess enrolls Liam in St. Angela's School.
Rachel, a grandmother working as a secretary at St. Angela's School, is still grieving over the murder of her 17 year old daughter Janey, 28 years ago. The murder has never been solved and she thinks the PE teacher at the school may be the murderer.
These three women's lives will intersect on a Good Friday and their lives will never be the same. I have to say that I figured out the "husband's secret," although I didn't figure out the "why?" But the I never saw the second twist coming.
Some of the reviews I read were really bad, but I thought the book and the story was great. Some books are better listened to. This was one of those.
I know some of the reviews of this book were off putting, but I read it anyway. And I'm glad I did. Having lived all but three of my 61 years in the South, I am always happy to visit it in a book. I loved the characters and can promise that I went to high school with a lot of them. I knew my own Emma Sue and Ruthie Morgan. And my mama knew a Gloria Jean. What wonderful characters! I have eaten a dilly bar (although we called it something else) at the Dairy Queen. And we have all looked for salvation. How wise was Eddie Franklin? Very. I went to school with him too.
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