Coming Soon

 

Envy by Amanda Robson has a premise that I immediately connected to.

Take a look:

She wants your life – and she’ll do anything to get it…

Erica has always wanted to be exactly like her neighbour, Faye: beautiful, thin, and a mother. But Faye’s life isn’t as perfect as it seems – she has a terrible secret, and slowly but surely, it is threatening to destroy her and everything she holds dear.

When Faye’s daughter Tamsin goes missing after school, the police turn to Erica. But is Erica the only one who has been enviously watching Faye? Or is there another threat hiding in the shadows…?

Obsession leads to envy in this story of a woman who has been stalking her neighbor. This is a creepy, fun read that is full of twists! If you enjoy an unreliable narrator who witnesses her “perfect’ neighbor doing some imperfect things and is determined to teach the object of her obsession a lesson…then this one is for you!

Due April 4.

 

 

If you haven’t read Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly, do it now. It was very good historical fiction and will get you in the literary mood for Lost Roses which is coming out in April.  From the first few pages, I was hooked and eager to see how the story would play out with the three main characters.

Here’s what you need to know:

It is 1914, and the world has been on the brink of war so often,many New Yorkers treat the subject with only passing interest. Eliza Ferriday is thrilled to be traveling to St. Petersburg with Sofya Streshnayva, a cousin of the Romanovs. The two met years ago one summer in Paris and became close confidantes. Now Eliza embarks on the trip of a lifetime, home with Sofya to see the splendors of Russia: the church with the interior covered in jeweled mosaics, the Rembrandts at the tsar’s Winter Palace, the famous ballet.

But when Austria declares war on Serbia and Russia’s imperial dynasty begins to fall, Eliza escapes back to America, while Sofya and her family flee to their country estate. In need of domestic help, they hire the local fortune-teller’s daughter, Varinka, unknowingly bringing intense danger into their household. On the other side of the Atlantic, Eliza is doing her part to help the White Russian families find safety as they escape the revolution. But when Sofya’s letters suddenly stop coming, she fears the worst for her best friend.

From the turbulent streets of St. Petersburg and aristocratic countryside estates to the avenues of Paris where a society of fallen Russian émigrés live to the mansions of Long Island, the lives of Eliza, Sofya, and Varinka will intersect in profound ways. In her newest powerful tale told through female-driven perspectives, Martha Hall Kelly celebrates the unbreakable bonds of women’s friendship, especially during the darkest days of history.

I liked learning more about Russian history through this novel. The story was interesting and intriguing, with multiple points of view from Eliza- a wealthy New Yorker, her friend Sofya-  cousin to Tsar Nicholas, and Varinka- a poor young Russian woman.

I kept turning the pages to see how everything was going to end for the brave women. This is the prequel to Lilac Girls (Caroline Ferriday’s mother is Eliza Ferriday) and I have heard the author is working on another novel that features the same family but in the days of slavery- what is a prequel to a prequel called?  I am looking forward to that book!

 

 

I will never turn down a suspense novel that keeps me reading late into the night! Clare Boyd’s book, Her Closest Friend centers around Naomi and Sophie who have been best friends since high school. One of them knows the truth about the night of a terrible accident but she has been hiding it. Is it the weight of keeping the secret that has been wearing her down?

For several their friendship has been slowly turning toxic and now Naomi feels she needs to pull away. There are some hints and clues that Sophie is just not totally sane though and she won’t give her friendship up without a fight.

Naomi and I are best friends.  School runs, dog walks, a shoulder to cry on over a glass of wine, we’re inseparable.
But now my husband has walked out, I need her more than ever. I know she will help me pick up the pieces.  Because she knows about the lie I told to protect her.
She knows how much I’ve sacrificed for this friendship.  And she’d never let anyone hurt me.  Would she?

This creepy page-turner is due out on March 5.

 

 

Another amazing historical fiction! When We Left Cuba by Chanel Cleeton is the follow up to her brilliant novel, Next Year in Havana.  You are going to love this one! Another incredible story featuring Beatriz Perez.

Here is what you must know about this book:

The Cuban Revolution took everything from sugar heiress Beatriz Perez–her family, her people, her country. Recruited by the CIA to infiltrate Fidel Castro’s inner circle and pulled into the dangerous world of espionage, Beatriz is consumed by her quest for revenge and her desire to reclaim the life she lost.

As the Cold War swells like a hurricane over the shores of the Florida Strait, Beatriz is caught between the clash of Cuban American politics and the perils of a forbidden affair with a powerful man driven by ambitions of his own. When the ever-changing tides of history threaten everything she has fought for, she must make a choice between her past and future–but the wrong move could cost Beatriz everything–not just the island she loves, but also the man who has stolen her heart.

The author does such a fantastic job of painting a brilliant picture of Cuba, she writes characters that feel real, and you cannot help but get swept up in this story. It’s the perfect book to read all weekend.

 

 

 

Years and years ago, someone recommended Moloka’i by Alan Brennert and I remember thinking, “Meh, doesn’t sound like something I’d like but I’ll give it a whirl…” and I ended up loving it. I have had this reaction many times and have been pleasantly surprised over the years. Now I am really excited to read Daughter of Moloka’i which is coming out later this month! YAY!

I haven’t read the whole thing yet but wanted to be sure to put this book on your radar as it will be here on February 19. 

Here’s what you need to know: 

The book follows young Ruth from her arrival at the Kapi’olani Home for Girls in Honolulu, to her adoption by a Japanese couple who raise her on a farm in California, her marriage and unjust internment at Manzanar Relocation Camp during World War II—and then, after the war, to the life-altering day when she receives a letter from a woman who says she is Ruth’s birth mother, Rachel.

DAUGHTER OF MOLOKA′I expands upon Ruth and Rachel’s 22-year relationship, only hinted at in MOLOKA′I. It’s a richly emotional tale of two women—different in some ways, similar in others—who never expected to meet, much less come to love, one another. And for Ruth it is a story of discovery, the unfolding of a past she knew nothing about. In prose that conjures up the beauty and history of both Hawaiian and Japanese cultures, it’s the powerful and poignant tale that readers of MOLOKA′I have been awaiting for fifteen years.

From the early reviews, this is another winning novel. rich in detail and well researched with a gripping plot. So exciting when you get to read the sequel to a book you loved!

 

I really liked Eric Poole’s memoir, Where’s My Wand? and when I saw a follow-up, Excuse Me While I Slip Into Someone More Comfortable, I knew I needed to read it! If you write a memoir and it’s going to make me laugh or cry, or both, please send it my way!

Here are the details- 

In 1977, Eric Poole is a talented high school trumpet player with one working ear, the height-to-weight ratio of a hat rack, a series of annoyingly handsome bullies, and a mother irrationally devoted to Lemon Pledge. But who he wants to be is a star…ANY star. With equal parts imagination, flair, and delusion, Eric proceeds to emulate a series of his favorite celebrities, like Barry Manilow, Halston, Tommy Tune, and Shirley MacLaine, in an effort to become the man he’s meant to be—that is, anyone but himself.

As he moves through his late teens and early twenties in suburban St. Louis, he casts about for an appropriate outlet for his talents. Will he be a trumpet soloist? A triple-threat actor/singer/dancer? A fashion designer in gritty New York City?

Striving to become the son who can finally make his parents proud, Eric begins to suspect that discovering his personal and creative identities can only be accomplished by admitting who he really is. Picking up at the end of his first acclaimed memoir, Where’s My Wand?, Poole’s journey from self-delusion to acceptance is simultaneously hysterical, heartfelt, and inspiring.

Though Eric writes with a sense of humor, underneath there are emotions that everyone who has ever felt like they didn’t fit in will understand. I think his writing has gotten even better since his first book and though this book is written from the perspective of a gay man, I related to the feeling of being young and awkward.  Honestly, I still feel that way.

 

 

This was a very enjoyable read! Full of rich detail from the time period, Park Avenue Summer by Renee Rosen takes us into 1965 as Helen Gurley Brown launches a revamped Cosmopolitan magazine. At the time, she was extremely edgy and her ideas didn’t go over so well by the publishing world.

Alice Weiss is new to New York City. She takes a job as Helen’s secretary though she has dreams of becoming a professional photographer someday. Through Alice’s eyes, the reader sees how Helen’s vision of Cosmo is met with disapproval and she fights to see her vision through. A modern girl can be sexy and independent, a revolutionary idea for 1965.

New York City is filled with opportunities for single girls like Alice Weiss, who leaves her small midwestern town to chase her big-city dreams and unexpectedly lands the job of a lifetime working for the first female editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan magazine, Helen Gurley Brown.

Nothing could have prepared Alice for the world she enters as editors and writers resign on the spot, refusing to work for the woman who wrote the scandalous bestseller Sex and the Single Girl, and confidential memos, article ideas, and cover designs keep finding their way into the wrong hands. When someone tries to pull Alice into a scheme to sabotage her boss, she is more determined than ever to help Helen succeed. While pressure mounts at the magazine and Alice struggles to make her way in New York, she quickly learns that in Helen Gurley Brown’s world, a woman can demand to have it all.

The author did such a fabulous job putting you right in the middle of NYC in the 60s when things were really changing for women.  I always enjoy Renee Rosen’s books and this one might be my favorite!

April, 2019

 

I wanted to include How To Write A Page Turner by Jordan Rosenfeld in my write up today. Though I have written several books, I am always eager to learn more and get better with my storytelling. This is a book I will read slowly and take notes from. If you are interested in writing or improving your skills, I suggest you get this one when it comes out in March.

Here is what you can look forward to learning-

Tension is the heart of conflict, the backbone of uncertainty, the hallmark of danger. It keeps readers guessing and characters on their toes. When you’ve got tension in place, stories leave readers breathless and wanting more. When it’s missing, scenes feel inconsequential, plots drag, and characters meander.

Learning the craft of writing can sometimes feel like a paint by numbers approach–connect compelling character A to plot event B. To avoid writing that’s formulaic, predictable, and slow, How to Write a Page Turner will help you sew the threads of tension tight for an unforgettable story.

You’ll learn how to:
Recognize the essential tension elements of danger, conflict, uncertainty, and withholding, and add them to your fiction
Create levels of tension in your characters through flaws, dialogue, power struggles, and more
Build tension at energetic markers throughout the plot
Use intimate imagery, strong sentences, and well-chosen words to build tension in exposition
While this book walks you through the key areas that need tension building, from character to plot, it also delves deeper, analyzing exceptional examples from contemporary fiction’s most gripping page-turners. So as you dive into the inner conflicts of a character’s deepest psyche, to the mechanics of how you reveal information to the reader, you’ll also discover how to craft a story your readers can’t put down!

So many people have often remarked to me that they would love to write a book but don’t know where to start. There are so many amazing books on writing that you can get to help like this one! I am excited to keep learning.

 

Keep checking this site because there are some really amazing books coming out within the next few months and I will be reviewing them! 

 

 

To read my YOUNG ADULT novel Malibu for free, go here! 

To read The Blondes of Bel Air for only $2.99,  go here.

If you suffer from food allergies or sensitivities, my cookbook might help you. Find it on Amazon.

No Comments

Leave a Comment