Book Review · Contemporary · Contemporary Romance · FIction · Women's Fiction

The Newcomer

Synopsis

Letty Carnahan is in trouble. She’s on the run from New York City; she has her four-year-old niece, Maya in tow, and her sister was found dead in the entry hall of her glamorous townhome. Letty believes she knows who did it: her sister’s awful, money-grubbing ex-husband, Eli Wingfield.

Letty can’t forget her sister Tara’s insistence: “if anything bad ever happens to me–It’s Eli. Promise me you’ll take Maya and run. Promise me.”

But run where? The only clue Tara has left behind is a faded magazine story about a sleepy mom-and-pop motel on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Certain that the police and Tara’s ex are hot on her trail, Letty leaves her own life behind without a backwards glance, knowing she will somehow get justice for Tara, and sets out for her destination–The Murmuring Surf.

The Surf, as regulars call it, is the winter home of a close-knit but quarrelsome group of retirees and snowbirds who regard this newcomer and her adorable niece with suspicion and more than a little curiosity. There’s a No Vacancy sign swinging from the neon motel marquee, but the motel’s longtime owner Ava DeCurtis takes Letty in, offers her a room and eventually a job, much to the disapproval of Ava’s cynical son Joe, a local police detective whose every instinct tells him that Letty is a dangerous fugitive, possibly even a kidnapper and murderer.

As Letty tries to settle into her new life and help heal Maya’s trauma, she’s preoccupied as her late sister’s troubled past and connection to the motel are revealed, all while trying to deal with the attractive detective’s unwelcome advances. Is Joe a would-be suitor? Or a cop determined to betray her confidence and put her behind bars?

Review

Mary Kay Andrews has always been a favorite author of mine. No matter the book, it always has a great storyline that draws me in and keeps my interest piqued. The Newcomer, Mary Kay Andrews‘ latest book, was no different. I love how Mary Kay Andrews describes the settings of her books as well as the characters. Both the setting and the characters were so relatable and easy to picture in your mind’s eye. While not a mystery book per say, this book definitely kept me guessing as to what was going to happen and how the characters all fit together to form the whole story. The Newcomer was one of those books that I did not want to put down, but at the same time wanted to savor the story and not read it too fast.  I wanted the story to last, so I could stay lost in the fictional world of Letty, Maya, Joe, Ava, and the many other wonderful characters that Mary Kay Andrews created at The Murmuring Surf. If you have not read a book by Mary Kay Andrews (why not?) or if you are like me and a long time fan, The Newcomer is a must read!

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About the Author

MARY KAY ANDREWS is the New York Times bestselling author of 27 novels (including Hello, SummerSunset Beach; The High Tide Club; The WeekendersBeach Town; Save the Date; Ladies’ Night; Christmas Bliss; Spring FeverSummer Rental; The Fixer Upper; Deep Dish; Blue Christmas; Savannah Breeze; Hissy Fit; Little Bitty Lies; and Savannah Blues), and one cookbook, The Beach House Cookbook.

A native of St. Petersburg, Florida, she earned a B.A. in journalism from The University of Georgia. After a 14-year career working as a reporter at newspapers including The Savannah Morning News, The Marietta Journal, and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where she spent the final ten years of her career, she left journalism in 1991 to write fiction.

Her first novel, Every Crooked Nanny, was published in 1992 by HarperCollins. She went on to write ten critically acclaimed mysteries under her real name, Kathy Hogan Trocheck. In 2002, she assumed the pen name Mary Kay Andrews with the publication of Savannah Blues. In 2006, Hissy Fit became her first New York Times bestseller, followed by twelve more New York TimesUSA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestsellers. To date, her novels have been published in German, Italian, Polish, Slovenian, Hungarian, Dutch, Czech and Japanese.

She and her family divide their time between Atlanta and Tybee Island, GA, where they cook up new recipes in two restored beach homes, The Breeze Inn and Ebbtide—both named after fictional places in Mary Kay’s novels, and both available to rent through Tybee Vacation Rentals. In between cooking, spoiling her grandkids, and plotting her next novel, Mary Kay is an intrepid treasure hunter whose favorite pastime is junking and fixing up old houses.

Book Review · Contemporary · FIction · Women's Fiction

Ladies Night

Synopsis

Grace Stanton’s life as a rising media star and beloved lifestyle blogger takes a surprising turn when she catches her husband cheating and torpedoes his pricey sports car straight into the family swimming pool.

Grace suddenly finds herself locked out of her palatial home, checking account, and even the blog she has worked so hard to develop in her signature style. Moving in with her widowed mother, who owns and lives above a rundown beach bar called The Sandbox, is less than ideal. So is attending court-mandated weekly “divorce recovery” therapy sessions with three other women and one man for whom betrayal seems to be the only commonality.

When their “divorce coach” starts to act suspiciously, they decide to start having their own Wednesday “Ladies’ Night” sessions at The Sandbox, and the unanticipated bonds that develop lead the members of the group to try and find closure in ways they never imagined. Can Grace figure out a new way home and discover how strong she needs to be to get there?

Heartache, humor, and a little bit of mystery come together in a story about life’s unpredictable twists and turns. Mary Kay Andrews’ Ladies’ Night will have you raising a glass and cheering these characters on.

Review

I have always loved books by Mary Kay Andrews and once again, I was not disappointed!  The characters in this book were wonderful.  Each had their own personalities and quirks, which made this book so entertaining, I would find myself sitting in my car listening long after I arrived at my destination!  This is a great story of how life sometimes falls apart and what you need to do it put it back together; A story of picking up the pieces and making lemonade out of lemons.  Mary Kay Andrews writes in a way that brings the story to life and makes it easy to imagine in your mind’s eye what the characters look like and the places they are at in the book.  I love Mary Kay Andrews’ wonderfully descriptive writing!  If you have not picked up a book by Mary Kay Andrews, first what are you waiting for, and second, make sure to read Ladies Night.

About the Author

MARY KAY ANDREWS is the New York Times bestselling author of 27 novels (including Hello, SummerSunset Beach; The High Tide Club; The WeekendersBeach Town; Save the Date; Ladies’ Night; Christmas Bliss; Spring FeverSummer Rental; The Fixer Upper; Deep Dish; Blue Christmas; Savannah Breeze; Hissy Fit; Little Bitty Lies; and Savannah Blues), and one cookbook, The Beach House Cookbook.

A native of St. Petersburg, Florida, she earned a B.A. in journalism from The University of Georgia. After a 14-year career working as a reporter at newspapers including The Savannah Morning News, The Marietta Journal, and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where she spent the final ten years of her career, she left journalism in 1991 to write fiction.

Her first novel, Every Crooked Nanny, was published in 1992 by HarperCollins. She went on to write ten critically acclaimed mysteries under her real name, Kathy Hogan Trocheck. In 2002, she assumed the pen name Mary Kay Andrews with the publication of Savannah Blues. In 2006, Hissy Fit became her first New York Times bestseller, followed by twelve more New York TimesUSA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestsellers. To date, her novels have been published in German, Italian, Polish, Slovenian, Hungarian, Dutch, Czech and Japanese.

She and her family divide their time between Atlanta and Tybee Island, GA, where they cook up new recipes in two restored beach homes, The Breeze Inn and Ebbtide—both named after fictional places in Mary Kay’s novels, and both available to rent through Tybee Vacation Rentals. In between cooking, spoiling her grandkids, and plotting her next novel, Mary Kay is an intrepid treasure hunter whose favorite pastime is junking and fixing up old houses.

Adult Fiction · Book Review · FIction

The Scent Keeper

Back in March I was invited to be part of a book tour by St. Martin’s Press for the book The Scent Keeper. I have only been on #bookstagram since January and about a month later I started my blog, so I was super excited that St. Martin’s Press reached out to me!!!

Synopsis

Emmeline lives on a remote island with her father. She knows nothing about the outside world except what her father teaches her through the use of scent. On the island, Emmeline lives in a cabin with her father. On one wall of the cabin there are many drawers that line one of the walls with sealed bottles. Her father won’t tell Emmeline about the scents that are held in those bottles in the drawers, nor will he tell her about the machine that creates those scents. As Emmeline grows older, she becomes more and more curious about the bottles and the scents they contain. However, before she can figure out their secret, she is suddenly off the island and in the real world. Thrust in a world she knows nothing about, Emmeline searches for who she really is and what really happened in her past.

Review

I struggled to get into this book. While it was well written, I found it hard to understand the life Emmeline lived on the island with her father. I struggled to make sense of what was going on and the scents that were being talked about. As the book moved forward and Emmeline was thrust into the “real” world and bits and pieces of her past were uncovered, I began to enjoy the story much more and also begin to understand the beginning chapters of the book. Overall, I thought that this was a good book, that for the most part held my attention. I was captured by the story of Emmeline as she struggled to figure out who she is and where she came from. I was also captured by the friends that she met along the way and the impact that each of those friends had on her life. I am glad that I was selected to read this book and look forward to reading other books by Erika Bauermeister.

Book will be Published May 19, 2019

Preorder the book on the following sites: Amazon; Barnes and Nobel; Indiebound

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