Review: Sheila Roberts' Angel Lane
Angel Lane by Sheila Roberts
Summary: Keep the heart in Heart Lake. That’s exactly what three small-town shop owners hope to do when they launch their crazy-ambitious “Have a Heart” campaign — asking neighbors to commit one random act of kindness every day. However, for shop owners Emma, Sarah, and Jamie, their good intentions may bring more heartache than they bargained for...
May's Review: Okay so in the interest of full disclosure, I admit that I ended up crying towards the end of the book.
Most times, I get teary-eyed especially if the beloved heroine is on her deathbed (e.g. Judith McNaught's Something Wonderful), but for some strange reason, I had tears flowing down my face when one of the lead characters was going through her personal crisis in the book. I am not saying this is a sad book. In fact, it's pretty much standard chick-lit fare that is highly reminiscent of Debbie Macomber's novels. Angel Lane has a little bit of everything that will appeal to Macomber fans--romance, female friendship, civic action in the form of small good deeds and of course, a touch of humour. If you like Debbie Macomber's Twenty Wishes, then be sure to check out Roberts' Angel Lane.
P.S. We often remember the last time we cried when watching a movie, but do you remember the last you cried while reading a book? I dare you to post the name of the book that made you cry in our comments section.
Time to Revisit a Good Read
The year is ending and instead of looking back at the books I have read this year, I've decided to reflect on an author I have read for several years, and have enjoyed immensely.
Fiona Walker writes chicklit about single women in Britain, and explores their romantic adventures with lots of comedy and wordplay. Her style of writing features multiple characters, and has delicious side stories that compliment the action of her main characters. If you are new to Walker's writing I suggest you start with Snap Happy, where a curvaceous stand up comedian struggles through a series of misunderstandings with a handsome American.
By Sophie Kinsella
When the spirit of Lara’s great-aunt Sadie–a feisty, demanding girl with firm ideas about fashion, love, and the right way to dance–mysteriously appears, she has one last request: Lara must find a missing necklace that had been in Sadie’s possession for more than seventy-five years, and Sadie cannot rest without it. Lara, on the other hand, has a number of ongoing distractions. Her best friend and business partner has run off to Goa, her start-up company is floundering, and she’s just been dumped by the “perfect” man.
Sadie, however, could care less.
Lara and Sadie make a hilarious sparring duo, and at first it seems as though they have nothing in common. But as the mission to find Sadie’s necklace leads to intrigue and a new romance for Lara, these very different “twenties” girls learn some surprising truths from each other along the way. (Product Description)
First solid novel since her debut. I really enjoyed this one. The plot was well paced, the characters complimented each other perfectly and the descriptions took the reader right into the book. Unlike her usual contemporary chick lit novels, Kinsella tries her hand in writing a ghost story. Trust me it works without being too over the top, endearing really. As with her other novels, you can't help but love the main character Laura's good natured sincerity and who can forget zany Aunt Sadie's eccentric antics? Light, uplifting, humorous, with a little bit of mystery and lot of character, this book has something for all chick lit fans out there.
Posted by the Rogue Reader
Confessions of a fellow Shopaholic
Confessions of a Shopaholic
By Sophie Kinsella
Recent graduate and financial writer, Rebecca Bloomwood, is up to her head in debt. When her imaginative excuses run out, and she can no longer ignore the grim letters regarding the state of her account, Becky decides she must take action in order to secure her financial future.
A damsel in a commercialized distress, a wealthy, good-looking prince charming, and a happily ever after: this book is a fairy tale for adults. Confessions of a Shopaholic sums up all of the lame excuses we use to justify the purchases we really don’t need. If you’re looking for something shallow, humorous, and really light, this would be the book to wile away the hours.
Confessions of a Shopaholic the movie is currently playing in the theaters starring Isla Fisher and Hugh Dancy.
I had the opportunity to watch the movie over the weekend and it is definitely a feel-good "chick flic" perfect for a girls night out. The passion Rebecca Bloomwood expresses when she is describing the thrill of shopping truly just captures that magical moment of purchase! For all of you closet shoppers, watch and rejoice.
Posted by the Rogue Reader
Always and Forever by Ireland's Cathy Kelly
Some have compared Cathy Kelly's writing style to that of Maeve Binchy. Or is it Chick Lit?
Always and Forever follows the lives of three Irish women in the small town of Carrickwell, outside of Dublin. Ambitious Mel is a stressed-out Mum, juggling her career and motherhood. Daisy is settled in a relationship with her boyfriend but longs for a child. Cleo, eager to put her hotel management degree to use, butts heads with her family over the way they are running the family hotel business.
Life happens, plans crumble. Magically, the three troubled women meet at the new Clouds Hill spa where they are eventually able to work out what really matters in their lives, always and forever.
Be Careful what you wish for...
Ever wish that you could wake up one morning to find that you’re in the best shape of your life, married to the man of your dreams and suddenly a richer than you could possibly imagine? After receiving a bump on her head from a car accident, Lexi Smart wakes up to a brand new life that she can’t even remember. Suffering from retrograde amnesia, our heroine can only remember her life up to 2004 when she was slightly overweight, in a dead-end relationship, and trapped in an unfulfilling job. Well, things have drastically changed. But as she begins to piece her seemingly perfect life together, Lexi quickly realizes things aren’t always as wonderful as they first appeared to be.
Although there were no dead bodies or cryptic messages to solve, I must admit, that once I got into the book, it wasn’t a bad read. It was the whole amnesia thing that initially intrigued me. And true to the chick lit genre, there’s always a sickly sweet happy ending. This is not a book I would pick up over and over again, but it was a good source of entertainment while it lasted.
The Rogue Reader
Anna Maxted: fun, funny, fabulous
If you have not heard of Anna Maxted then you are in for a real treat. Her books are filled with heart and humor, her heroines are wonderfully, believably flawed with redemption just around the corner. This is the best of chick lit adorned in wit and three dimensional characters that you cheer (and sometimes cry) for. Goes beyond formula to achieve fabulous.
If you like Sophie Kinsella and Marian Keyes, you will love Anna Maxted.
Find Anna Maxted in the RPL catalogue
A Tale of Two Sisters
Two sisters, Lizbet and Cassie, are at a crossroads in their lives and at odds with one another. The novel alternates back and forth between each sister's point of view, which really helps give the story dimension. Lizbet is the plainer, dreamier of the two, a mid-level journalist for a men's magazine and in a stable relationship with her partner Tim. They are struggling financially in a disorganized, chaotic home. Cassie is the posh, put-together barrister, absolutely beautiful and seemingly has it all, including a GQ husband. The two sisters are as different as can be, and have always desired very different things from life. Until now. When one sister gets pregnant, the other is devastated by jealousy and resentment. Then tragedy strikes and throws the sisters' lives into a tailspin, throwing a spotlight on everything that is wrong in their relationship with each other, with their parents, and with their mates.
From The Washington Post's Book World:
"Maxted is a terrific writer with a droll comedic voice. She excels at creating vivid, believable protagonists, and even her minor characters are full of life....Not yet out of her thirties, Maxted seems to be evolving stylistically, with this effort being sharper and more emotionally complex than the early books that established her name. Already something of a grand dame of the genre, she probably doesn't waste much time fretting about the musings of industry trend spotters, or the sorts of labels that are slapped on her books."
Can suburban Miami neighbours rise above family crises of date rape and abuse or will their friendship be devasted by the secrets and shattered forever? In Mending Fences, Sherryl Woods has next-door-neighbours Emily Dobbs and Marcie Carter examining their friendship, their personal relationships, their family dynamics after their children are involved in a scandalous situation. The friends struggle to keep it together and mend fences before they can move on in their personal lives and romances.
Watch for Sherryl Woods newest title Seaview Inn, set in the Florida Keys where Grandma Jenny isn't ready for the retirement home but wants to reopen the family resort. Her granddaughter Hannah, a New York PR executive, heads home to deal with the situation and brings along her own family crises and a rekindled romance.