Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Review: Summer Secrets by Jane Green

The cover of Summer Secrets by Jane Green screams summer and Nantucket to me...blue hydrangeas, blue representing the blue ocean, summer, blue skies. That is what I visualize when I hold this book in my hands and gaze at the cover, the perfect summer read. I have to admit that I am in love with this book cover. It makes me want to go to Nantucket and walk the streets and meander the shops on the island. I have not visited there...yet, but I have visited Martha's Vineyard which I loved. It's on my bucket list...one day, I will get there. I digress...I loved this book. I just started reading Jane Green's novels this year and immediately devoured 3 books in a row starting with Saving Grace. Summer Secrets is Jane Green's 17th novel.  

I have to say that I loved Cat, the main character, her flaws and honesty felt raw and real to me as a reader. The book opens in 2014 with Cat living in London, looking back on her life and the choices she has made, the choices that were made that affected her and the path that has led her to where she is now at peace in her life. Cat is in her 30's sober, divorced, making up for the past with her teenaged daughter. The story goes back and forth between the present in 2014, Cat's childhood and life in her 20's.  In her 20's, a truth is revealed about her father and she connects with family in Nantucket where one fateful summer night catapulted her future in many ways. Cat has the opportunity to confront her past in the process of making amends and returns to Nantucket in her 30's in 2014. 

Cat's story is emotional, deeply honest and touching. I felt like I was reading the story of a friend, one that I could see being friends with. We are all flawed, all have paths in our lives that are not perfect and the only way we can change is to face our battles and the truth. It's hard, life is not easy for everyone and we can never know what someone has endured unless you walk in their shoes. I have not experienced what Cat has although I have friends that have walked the road she travelled.  Jane Green is a talented writer who understands womens issues. In Summer Secrets, she has written a story that shows the strength and spirit of women and how we can overcome our battles and come out on a different side that we never thought imaginable. I loved this book and can't wait until Jane Green's 18th book! 

Check out Jane Green's Website here

Review copy provided by Tandem Literary 

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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Review: TIny Little Thing by Beatriz Williams

Tiny Little Thing  opens in  the summer of 1966 at the family estate on Cape Cod. Christina, known as "Tiny" to her family and friends, is at a precipice of unveiling secrets surrounding her. Tiny and her husband Frank, present the picture perfect Kennedy-esque couple. Frank is destined for politics, his plan to run for a Senate seat with his father pushing him down this path. Tiny, with grace and style in her petite frame of elegance has been raised to marry a man of power and leadership. 

Tiny, has a secret of her own that she doesn't want revealed.  Envelopes containing incriminating photographs keep appearing in her mail with notes of blackmail.  Two visitors appear, Tiny's sister Pepper and Frank's cousin Vietnam war hero Caspian who knows more about Tiny's inner life than Frank. As the story unravels, the reader is taken back and forth in time between 1964 to 1966 to connect the dots of the story.  I found this style engaging and kept reading as secrets were revealed. As most of us know, secrets eventually will be revealed in life. 

I enjoy reading about family secrets and dramas along with historical fiction. If you enjoy these as well, Tiny Little Thing will pull you in as a reader. Ms. Williams tells an intriguing, entertaining story intertwined with factual details of this time period. I liked Tiny's character and how she developed throughout the novel.  Her innocence and bravery to face the truth of her life showed great character. 

If you are looking for an enjoyable summer and/or beach read, I highly recommend Tiny Little Thing by Beatriz Williams. 

Review copy provided by Netgalley and Penguin Group Putnam

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Spotlight/US Giveaway: The Gates of Evangeline by Hester Young

Today, the spotlight is on Putnam’s biggest debut of the Fall 2015 season, Hester Young’s THE GATES OF EVANGELINE, which comes out on September 1, 2015  It's described as an addictive first book in a fantastic new series introduces the unforgettable Charlotte “Charlie” Cates, a heroine whose dark visions bring to light secrets that will ultimately heal or destroy those around her". 

Quick Take: Sometimes a dream is simply a dream, a manifestation of daytime adventures and anxieties. But dreams can also deliver premonitions, a phenomenon eerily familiar to writer Hester Young. In fact, Young’s grandmother had an inexplicable premonitory dream of her four-year-old’s tragic and fatal fall and decades later, Young’s own dreams would foreshadow a local tragedy. These fascinating slices of real family history are the inspiration behind THE GATES OF EVANGELINE. When grieving mother and New York journalist Charlie Cates begins to experience vivid dreams about children in danger she’s sure that she’s lost her mind. Yet these are not the nightmares of a grieving parent, she soon realizes. They are messages and warnings that will help Charlie and the children she sees, if only she can make sense of them. After a little boy in a boat appears in Charlie’s dreams asking for her help, Charlie finds herself entangled in a thirty-year-old missing-child case that has never ceased to haunt Louisiana’s prestigious Deveau family. Armed with an invitation to Evangeline, the family’s sprawling estate, Charlie heads south, where new friendships and an unlikely romance bring healing. But as she uncovers long-buried secrets of love, money, betrayal, and murder, the facts begin to implicate those she most wants to trust—and her visions reveal an evil closer than she could’ve imagined.

About the AuthorHester Young holds a Master’s degree in English with a Creative Writing concentration from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa, and her work has been published in literary magazines such as The Hawai’i Review. Before turning to writing full time, she worked as a teacher in Arizona and New Hampshire. She lives with her husband and two children in New Jersey. 


Thanks to Putnam/Penguin Random House, I have TWO copies to give away. 

To Enter, Click Here and fill out the form.  Giveaway is open to those with a US address only.  One entry per person. Ends July 24, 2015

Giveaway has ended.

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