Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Not For Nothing

Not For Nothing by Kathy Curto

Take a close look at the family photo
on the cover of this memoir, and you'll
clearly see the people who shaped
Kathy Curto's life.

She's the timid, little girl posing with
her stern father in his dapper new suit,
while her adoring mother smiles faintly,
not a hair out of place in her perfectly
coiffed beehive. A loving family
with a volatile past.

This captivating collection of anecdotes
details the author's life growing up with
her three siblings in a robust Italian family
in South Jersey during  the tumultuous 1970s
and 1980s. It's a story filled with her memories
as a child, and her awakening years as a teenager.

Her father was a proud man, loud and boisterous,
who owned a small chain of gas stations. Every
night he'd come home reeking of oil, with dirt
under his fingernails, ready for a home-cooked meal
and a fight if anyone dared to antagonize him.
Even with success, he never felt quite good
enough, often asking his children
"who do you think you are?" when they
dared to question his authority.

Her mother was caring, long-suffering,
capable, and loyal. When she could no longer
tolerate her husband's roving eye or angry temper
tantrums, she would leave for awhile, only
to return to try again. She loved her children
with a fierceness that sustained her through
the good and the bad times, and the ups and downs
of life with a husband who was not always easy to love.

In those days, her brother was a carefree young man,
until drugs took him deeper and deeper into
an abyss from which he couldn't escape. Kathy
watched the futile attempts to save him fail
over and over again.

This short book is both humorous ( her father's
glued on hairpiece will make you laugh out loud)
and achingly emotional. It will appeal to all
those readers who can relate to growing up
up in a large, ethnic family where food, fights,
and laughter are all part of daily life.

Honest, poignant, and thoroughly entertaining.





Friday, January 4, 2019

For Better and Worse

For Better and Worse by Margot Hunt

How easy is it to plan and commit the
perfect murder?

When Will and Natalie Clarke were
flirtatious law students, their first date
included fine dining, drinks, and stimulating
conversation about plotting to kill and
then getting away with the crime. All fictitious,
of course.  Little did they know how words
spoken in jest, would come back to haunt
them seventeen years later.

Now they are married, living in a sleepy,
little Florida seaside community where Nat
is a well-known, nose-to-the grindstone
criminal attorney, bent on defending the
helpless and downtrodden, while Will
toils away at real estate law. Eleven-year-old
son, Charlie, is the light of their lives, and
even though their marriage has grown stale,
he brings them joy in an otherwise humdrum
existence.

Life takes a dramatic turn for this family
when they learn that Charlie may be the
victim of abuse by the local school principal,
a friend they've known for years. When the
swirling gossip starts to spread throughout
the town, angry parents demand answers.
But Nat wants more than answers, she wants
justice. And Will, her weary husband who
has some juicy secrets of his own, becomes
an unwitting partner in her devious scheme.
Will soon discovers how little he knows
about his cold, cunning. and calculating
wife. Who is this woman he married?

This psychological suspense novel is
hard to put down, as each chapter enfolds
with an unexpected twist. Exactly how far
will a mother go to protect her child?

Like all good thrillers, the unpredictable
ending makes Hunt's  latest novel a must
read for 2019. Check it out.














Friday, November 30, 2018

One Day in December

One Day in December  by Josie Silver

Laurie looks aimlessly out the misty, bus window
on a cold, blustery, London day as she heads home
from another uneventful day at her tedious job.
Suddenly, she locks eyes with a shivering stranger
waiting outside at the bus stop. His penetrating
gaze makes her heart stop.

The undeniable attraction from afar is
mutual and instantaneous. Laurie debates
getting off the bus, the unknown man falters
for a second as if he's going to approach
her, but the bus moves on, and Laurie
can't shake the feeling she's missed a magical
moment in time.

Laurie is so smitten with this elusive stranger
that she spends the next year searching for him
at bus stops and cafes, assuring herself that she
will immediately recognize his piercing eyes
should they ever cross paths again.

Eventually Laurie does meet Jack in person (yes, he has
a name), at her roommate, Sarah's, Christmas party.
This is the man her friend has been gushing
about all these months, so eager for her best friend
to meet the perfect one. A crestfallen Laurie watches
her foolish hopes and dreams fade away when she
sees Sarah's radiant smile every time she looks at Jack.
Wistfully, she recollects that day of infatuation at the
bus stop, but is it possible that Jack remembers her, too?

For the next ten years these three vulnerable characters
travel down a winding road of twists and turns, secrets
and lies, and stunning betrayals as each one of them
searches for the happiness that always seems to be just
out of reach, no matter how hard they try.

This is a warm, emotional novel perfect for a cozy
evening by the fire, especially for those looking
for some holiday, happily ever after, romance.









Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The Lies We Told

The Lies We Told by Camilla Way

Chilling and sinister, just in time
for HALLOWEEN......

Beth and Doug desperately long for a
child, so when they are blessed with
Hannah, it's a dream come true.

By the mid-1980s, they can't ignore the
fact that their beautiful daughter is far
from normal. Her dark, brooding, alarming
behavior makes them anxious in their own home.
The repeated calls from school detailing Hannah's
cruelty towards other students, and flippant,
blatant disrespect for authority, has both of them
constantly on edge as they struggle to maintain
any sense of normalcy. No one can know what
happens behind closed doors. No one can
learn the truth.

When Hannah purposefully hurts the person
most dear to Beth and Doug's heart, they realize
what they've known all along...they are deathly
afraid of their own daughter, and what she is
capable of doing.

Thirty years later, a young woman by the name of
Clara, is frantic when her boyfriend, Luke, vanishes
without a trace, just like his sister, Emily, did years ago.
When she and Luke's best friend begin an investigation
into his disappearance, it opens Clara's eyes to the
lies and deceit she never knew about the man she loves.
Tension mounts as she feels the presence of eyes always
watching her, and a narrow escape from a burning
building intensifies the sense of danger surrounding her.

Two different scenarios, decades apart, yet these two
stories are intricately intertwined with one another
in this scary, psychological thriller that will keep you
guessing.

Expect a sleepless night after reading the eerie
conclusion.








Friday, September 28, 2018

An Unwanted Guest

An Unwanted Guest by Shari Lapena

What begins as a relaxing, winter weekend
getaway for a motley group of guests, turns into
a nightmare of murder and mayhem.

Mitchell's Inn is a quaint, picturesque retreat cozily
nestled in the breathtaking Catskills Mountains.
The guests arriving on this particular day are
strangers to one another, but they do have one
thing in common.....they all have closely guarded
secrets.

The powdery, crystalline beauty of falling snow
lulls them into peaceful tranquility until the
the discovery of a dead body suddenly changes everything.

It all starts the first night when a devastatingly beautiful
guest plunges to her death after falling down the
grand staircase. Could it be a tragic accident, or is her rich
boyfriend somehow responsible? After all, they were heard
arguing in the middle of the night. The soft blanket of white
turns into a dangerous sheet of ice, leaving the Inn with
no power and impassable roads. It looks like the dead body
must remain in their midst until the police can arrive. In the
meantime, another guest is found bludgeoned to death, and
then another, until panic sets it and accusations begin to fly.
Who's the next victim?

Agatha Christie fans will immediately see similarities
between her famous "Ten Little Indians" and this
captivating suspense thriller. It's an age-old plot
that stands the test of time. It's up to the reader to decide;
is the perpetrator one of the guests with a mysterious past,
or someone lurking outside, hiding in the ice-encrusted shadows?


The author marvelously creates a foreboding, menacing
atmosphere for impending doom with her vividly written,
descriptive passages, putting  the reader on edge throughout
the book. The frigid, forlorn isolation of the Inn, tucked
away in the desolate mountains, is the perfect setting
for calculated murder.

If you are looking for a good, old-fashioned, chilling
murder mystery, give this one a try. And have fun
deciding who the culprit really is.


Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Ghosted

Ghosted by Rosie Walsh

Sarah's in love after spending seven, unforgettable days
and nights with a virtual stranger named Eddie. Incredible
as it may seem, this unexpected, whirlwind romance is not
a fling. Sarah knows how lucky she is. It's hard to start
over when you are a soon-to-be, forty-year-old woman
with a dismal, disintegrating marriage. This is her chance
for newfound happiness.

But Eddie doesn't call Sarah after he leaves for a
trip to Spain, even though he professed his love
and vowed to stay in touch. She's confused and
mystified why he hasn't contacted her. Friends
insist she's been "ghosted", tossed carelessly aside
like so many spontaneous relationships that fizzle and die. Yet
Sarah knows their time together was real and lasting. So she
begins her search to find the man she fell madly in love with
after just a few days; the person who magically appeared
to brighten her lonely life.

Sarah goes to great lengths to track Eddie down, exposing her
vulnerability for all the world to see. Finally she deciphers
clues that point to the fact that their chance encounter
wasn't a random meeting at all. These two lovers share a
heartbreaking, dark past that changed their lives forever.
Facing the truth means abandoning the promising future
they thought was destiny.

This romantic mystery is brimming with emotion. Lost souls
wrestle with guilt, obligations, and fear, knowing that the vision
of a new tomorrow can never be. It's a love story filled with
hope, and the belief that forgiveness and reconciliation can
heal old wounds, but only if the heart is willing.

























































Thursday, August 16, 2018

Rush

Rush by Lisa Patton

The campus of Ole Miss is crackling with
excitement and anticipation.

This is RUSH, that glorious time in college when
wide-eyed, eager young girls primp and pray they
will be lucky enough to win a precious bid to one
of the revered sororities at this esteemed university.

Sophisticated Lilith Whitmore (with her designer shoes
and penchant for anything Tiffany), has one goal in mind.
She's determined her lovely daughter secures a bid to the
exclusive Alpha Delta Beta Sorority, no matter what the cost.
As the House Corp President, it's easy to casually intimidate
everyone she meets. Never underestimate Lilith's influential
powers.

The next step is convincing a former acquaintance, Wilda,
to accept a role on the Advisory Board. It's an easy task
that doesn't take much coaxing since Wilda is rattling around
in an empty house waiting for something to make her feel
productive. Their daughters are even going to be cozy freshman
roommates, but it's all part of Lilith's conniving scheme to
make her own dreams come true, and Wilda falls
right into her trap.

A rich cast of characters fill the pages of this
witty, captivating novel. You'll meet the new, hopeful
pledges who are spoiled by the dedicated staff at the Alpha
"House". Catering to the girls living in the luxurious
mansion is all part of the job, but what about their own
needs?

Pledge Cali has the intelligence and drive to
dream big, but laments the fact that someone may uncover
the truth about her drug-addicted mother. And Ellie,
Wilda's daughter, learns that expensive room decor is
no substitute for self-esteem and true friendship.

At the very core of the story is Miss Pearl, housekeeper
extraordinaire,  and devoted confidant to needy, naive
co-eds whom she loves as if they were her own children.
When Pearl dares to pursue a promotion for herself,
she soon finds that old prejudices of race and class still
fill the halls of a place she holds so dear. She's
sacrificed everything in the name of love.....maybe
it's time to put her own wants and rights above all else.

Little does she know, change is coming. A motivated
group of new pledges speak with one voice to better
the lives of those they love and admire; a chance to
break away from out-dated rules and open a dialogue
about equality for all.

This is a tale written by an author who knows first-hand
about the opulence found in Southern sororities. It's a stark
examination of the fragile, sometimes stormy relationship
between mothers and daughters, the secrets wives keep
from their husbands, the feelings of inferiority for not
having a "pedigree", how forgiveness can right so many
wrongs, and the realization that if enough passionate voices
speak, people will listen.

Take a look at Lisa Patton's latest novel, set to be released
on August 21st. Immerse yourself in this poignant story,
written with charm and delightful humor, about the inspirational
awakening of a group of young women who vow to
make a difference in the lives of the forgotten ones.