Sailing in a Sea of Words

Literature Fanatic. Writer. I tend to lean toward mystery and fiction, but I like to change patterns with the occasional YA or non-fiction book. I hope you enjoy my reviews and they inspire you to read the book yourself!

Book Review: Five Little Pigs

Five Little Pigs (Hercule Poirot, #24) - Agatha Christie

Book: Five Little Pigs


Author: Agatha Christie


Genre: Fiction/Mystery


Summary: Beautiful Caroline Crale was convicted of poisoning her husband, but just like the nursery rhyme, there were five other "little pigs" who could have done it: Philip Blake (the stockbroker), who went to market; Meredith Blake (the amateur herbalist), who stayed at home; Elsa Greer (the three-time divorcee), who had her roast beef; Cecilia Williams (the devoted governess), who had none; and Angela Warren (the disfigured sister), who cried all the way home. Sixteen years later, Caroline's daughter is determined to prove her mother's innocence, and Poirot just can't get that nursery rhyme out of his mind. -William Morrow, 1943.

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Book Review: Happily Ever After | Companion to The Selection Series

Happily Ever After: Companion to the Selection Series - Kiera Cass

Book: Happily Ever After | Companion to The Selection Series


Author: Kiera Cass


Genre: Young Adult/Fiction/Fantasy/Novellas/Romance


Summary: Before Amberly came to the palace. . . She was a Four in love with a One.

Before Maxon met the girl of his dreams. . . He was the boy of someone else's.

Before Aspen opened his heart to someone new . . . He was determined to fight for his first love.

And before Marlee could fall for a prince . . . She was swept off her feet by a guard. -HarperTeen, 2015. 


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Book Review: The Girl Who Knew Too Much

The Girl Who Knew Too Much - Amanda Quick

Book: The Girl Who Knew Too Much


Author: Amanda Quick


Genre: Fiction/Historical/Mystery/Romance


Summary: When Hollywood moguls and stars want privacy, they head off to an idyllic small town on the coast, where the exclusive Burning Cove Hotel caters to their every need. It's where reporter Irene Glasson finds herself staring down at a beautiful actress at the bottom of a pool. . . The dead woman had a red-hot secret about up-and-coming leading man Nick Tremayne, a scoop that Irene couldn't resist - especially since she's just a rookie at a third-rate gossip rag. But now Irene's investigation into the drowning threatens to tear down the wall of illusion that is so deftly built around the famous actor, and there are more powerful men willing to do anything to protect their investment. Seeking the truth, Irene finds herself drawn to a master of deception. Oliver Ward was once a world-famous magician - until he was mysteriously injured during his last performance. Now the owner of the Burning Cove Hotel, he can't let scandal threaten his livelihood, even if it means trusting Irene, a woman who seems to have appeared in Los Angeles out of nowhere four months ago . . . With Oliver's help, Irene soon learns that the glamorous paradise of Burning Cove hides dark and dangerous secrets. And that the past - always just out of sight - could drag them both under . . . -Berkley, 2017


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Book Review: The Crown

The Crown - Kiera Cass

Book: The Crown


Author: Kiera Cass


Genre: YA/Romance/Fantasy


Summary: When Eadlyn became the first princess of Illea to hold her own Selection, she didn't think she would fall in love with any of her thirty-five suitors. She spent the first few weeks of the competition counting down the days until she could send them all home. But as events at the palace force Eadlyn even further into the spotlight, she realizes that she might not be content remaining alone. Eadlyn still isn't sure she'll find the fairy tale ending her parents did twenty years ago. But sometimes the heart has a way of surprising you . . . and soon Eadlyn must make a choice that feels more impossible - and more important - than she ever imagined. -HarperTeen, 2016.


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Book Review: A Bridge Across the Ocean

A Bridge Across the Ocean - Susan Meissner

Book: A Bridge Across the Ocean


Author: Susan Meissner


Genre: Fiction/Historical/Romance/Supernatural


Summary: February 1946. World War II is over, but the recovery from the most intimate of its horrors has only just begun for Annaliese Lange, a German ballerina desperate to escape her past, and Simone Devereux, the wronged daughter of a French Resistance spy. Now the two women are joining hundreds of other European war brides aboard the renowned RMS Queen Mary to cross the Atlantic and be reunited with their American husbands. Their new lives in the United States brightly beckon until their tightly held secrets are laid bare in their shared stateroom. When the voyage ends at New York Harbor, only one of them will disembark. . . Present day. Facing a crossroads in her own life, Brette Caslake visits the famously haunted Queen Mary at the request of an old friend. What she finds will set her on a course to solve a seventy-year-old tragedy that will draw her into the heartaches and triumphs of the courageous war brides - and will ultimately lead her to reconsider what she has to sacrifice to achieve her own deepest longings. -Berkley, 2017.


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Book Review: Happy People Read and Drink Coffee

Happy People Read and Drink Coffee - Agnès Martin-Lugand

Book: Happy People Read and Drink Coffee


Author: Agnes Martin-Lugand


Genre: Fiction/Grief/Romance


Summary: Diane seems to have the perfect life. She is a wife, a mother, and the owner of Happy People Read and Drink Coffee, a cozy literary cafe in Paris. But when she suddenly loses her beloved husband and daughter in a car accident, the world as she knows it instantly vanishes. Trapped and haunted by her memories, Diane retreats from friends and family, unable and unwilling to move forward. But one year later, Diane shocks her loved ones with her surprising decision to move to a small town on the Irish coast. Finally determined to rebuild her life, Diane's new home is all quiet and comfort - until she meets Edward, the attractive yet taciturn Irish photographer who lives next door. Abrasive and unwelcoming, Edward resents Diane's intrusion into his life of solitude. Diane wants nothing more than to heal in peace, but her neighbor's gruff manner provokes her. Can their standoff bear the weight of an undeniable attraction? At once heartbreaking and uplifting, Diane's story is deeply felt, reminding us that love remembered is love enduring. - Weinstein Books, 2016


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Book Review: The Rules of Love and Grammar

The Rules of Love & Grammar - Mary Simses

Book: The Rules of Love and Grammar


Author: Mary Simses


Genre: Fiction/Small Town/Romantic Comedy


Summary: Newly jobless, newly single, and suddenly apartmentless, writer Grace Hammond has come unmoored. A grammar whiz who's brilliant at correcting other people's errors, she hasn't yet found quite the right set of rules for fixing her own mistakes. Desperate to escape the city and her trifecta of problems, Grace hits pause and retreats to her Connecticut hometown. What begins as a short visit with her parents quickly becomes a far more meaningful stay, though, as she discovers that the answers to what her future holds might be found by making peace with - and even embracing - the past. As Grace sets out to change her ways and come to terms, finally, with the tragedy that took her older sister's life so many years ago, she rekindles a romance with her high school sweetheart, Peter, now a famous Hollywood director who's filming a movie in town. Sparks also fly at the local bike shop, where Grace's penchant for pointing out what's wrong rattles the owner's ruggedly handsome schoolteacher son, Mitch. Torn between the promise of a glamorous life and the allure of the familiar, Grace must decide what truly matters - and whether it's time for her to throw away the rule book and bravely follow her heart. -Little, Brown and Company, 2016.


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Book Review: The Book of Lost and Found

The Book of Lost and Found - Lucy Foley

Book: The Book of Lost and Found


Author: Lucy Foley


Genre: Fiction/Family/Grief/Romance


Summary: Kate Darling's enigmatic mother - a once famous ballerina - has passed away, leaving Kate bereft. When her grandmother falls ill and bequeaths to Kate a small portrait of a woman who bears a striking resemblance to Kate's mother, Kate encounters a mystery that may upend everything she thought she knew. Kate's journey to find the true identity of the woman in the portrait takes her to some of the world's most iconic and indulgent locales, revealing a love story that began in the wild 1920s and was disrupted by war, and that could now spark new love for Kate. Alternating between Kate's present-day hunt and voices from the past, The Book of Lost and Found, casts light on family secrets and love - both lost and found. - Back Bay Books, 2015.


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Book Review: Murder at Brightwell

Murder at the Brightwell - Ashley Weaver

Book: Murder at the Brightwell


Author: Ashley Weaver


Genre: Fiction/Mystery/Historical


Summary: Amory Ames, a wealthy young woman questioning her marriage to her notoriously charming playboy husband, Milo, is looking for a change. When she accepts a request from her former fiance, Gil Trent, she does not know that she'll soon become embroiled in a murder investigation that will not only test her friendship with Gil, but will also upset the status quo with her husband. Amory accompanies Gil to the luxurious Brightwell Hotel on the south coast of England in an attempt to prevent the marriage of his sister, Emmeline, to Rupert Howe, a disreputable ladies' man. However, it soon becomes clear there is more than her happiness at stake, when Rupert is murdered and Gil is arrested for the crime. Matters are further complicated by Milo's unexpected arrival, and as the line between friend and foe becomes increasingly blurred, Amory must decide where her heart lies and catch the killer before she, too, becomes a victim. -St. Martin's Press, 2014.


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Book Review: The Siren

The Siren - Kiera Cass

Book: The Siren


Author: Kiera Cass


Genre: Fiction/YA/Romance/ Fantasy


Summary: Years ago, Kahlen was rescued from drowning by the Ocean. To repay her debt, she has served as a Siren ever since, using her voice to lure countless strangers to their deaths. Though a single word from Kahlen can kill, she can't resist spending her days on land, watching ordinary people and longing for the day when she will be able to speak and laugh and live freely among them again. Kahlen is resigned to finishing her sentence in solitude. . . until she meets Akinli. Handsome, caring, and kind, Akinli is everything Kahlen ever dreamed of. And though she can't talk to him, they soon forge a connection neither of them can deny. . . and Kahlen doesn't want to. Falling in love with a human breaks all the Ocean's rules, and if the Ocean discovers Kahlen's feelings, she'll be forced to leave Akinli for good. But for the first time in a lifetime of following the rules, Kahlen is determined to follow her heart. -Harper Teen, 2016


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Book Review: A Demon Summer

A Demon Summer: A Max Tudor Mystery - G.M. Malliet

Book: A Demon Summer


Author: G.M. Malliet


Genre: Fiction/Mystery


Summary: Someone has been trying to poison the Fifteenth Earl of Lislelivet. With his gift for making enemies, no one - particularly his wife - is too surprised until they discover the source of the poison: a fruitcake made and sold by the Handmaids of St. Lucy of Monkbury Abbey. Max Tudor, vicar of Nether Monkslip and former MI5 agent, is asked to investigate. But just as Max comes to believe the poisoning was accidental, a body is discovered in the cloister well. - St. Martin's Publishing Group, 2014


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Book Review: Finding the Dream

Finding the Dream (Dream #3) - Nora Roberts

Book: Finding the Dream


Author: Nora Roberts


Genre: Fiction/Romance/Family


Summary: Laura Templeton found out the hard way that nothing in life is guaranteed. The daughter of a wealthy hotelier, she had always known comfort, privilege, and security. But by the age of thirty, her storybook marriage had been destroyed by her husband's infidelity. Laura's divorce left her both emotionally and financially devastated - but determined to rebuild her life without the Templeton fortune. Laura had always defined herself as a wife, a daughter, or a mother. Now, she must finally discover Laura the woman . . . -Penguin Group, 1997


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Book Review: Holding the Dream

Holding the Dream - Nora Roberts

Book: Holding the Dream


Author: Nora Roberts


Genre: Fiction/Romance/Family


Summary: Surrounded by the sweeping cliffs and beauty of Big Sur, Kate Powell treasured her life at Templeton House. . . and the family who raised her like one of their own. Although Kate lacked Margo's beauty and Laura's elegance, she knew she had something they would never possess - a shrewd head for business. Driven by ambition, Kate measured her life's success with each soaring promotion. But now, faced with professional impropriety, Kate is forced to look deep within herself - only to find something missing in her life. . . and in her heart. -Penguin, 1997.


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Book Review: Daring to Dream

Daring to Dream (The Dream Trilogy, #1) - Nora Roberts

Book: Daring to Dream


Author: Nora Roberts


Genre: Fiction/Romance/Family


Summary: Margo, Kate, and Laura were brought up like sisters amidst the peerless grandeur of Templeton House. But it was Margo whose dreams first took her far away... Margo Sullivan had everything a young woman could ask for. But while growing up along the rocky cliffs of Monterey, she couldn't help but dream of bigger things. The daughter of the Templetons' stern Irish housekeeper, Margo had been treated like a member of the family. Deep down, she knew that money could not buy the thing she craved most - her mother's acceptance. Maybe things would be different if she could be sweet like Laura, or had Kate's shrewd head for business. But all Margo knew how to do was be Margo, and that meant doing things her own way - no matter what the consequences. . . -Penguin, 1996.


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Book Review: JFK's Last Hundred Days

JFK's Last Hundred Days: The Transformation of a Man and The Emergence of a Great President - Thurston Clarke

Book: JFK's Last Hundred Days: The Transformation of a Man and the Emergence of a Great President


Author: Thurston Clarke


Genre: Non-Fiction/Biography/Presidents/U.S. History


Summary: Fifty years after his assassination, President John F. Kennedy's legend endures. Noted author and historian Thurston Clarke reexamines the last months of the president's life to show a man in the midst of great change, both in his family and in the key issues of his day: the cold war, civil rights, and Vietnam, finally on the cusp of making good on his extraordinary promise. JFK's Last Hundred Days presents a gripping account that weaves together Kennedy's public and private lives, explains why the grief following his assassination has endured so long, and solves the most tantalizing Kennedy mystery of them all - not who killed him but who he was when he was killed and where he would have led us. - Penguin Books, 2014.


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Book Review: Once in Every Life

Once in Every Life - Kristin Hannah

Book: Once in Every Life


Author: Kristin Hannah


Genre: Fiction/Sci-Fi/Historical Romance


Summary: Tess Gregory is a woman who has been given a miraculous second chance at life. Jack is a man who abandoned hope long ago. Imprisoned by savage memories, he believes he has nothing to offer anyone, especially a woman like Tess, who dares to ask for the impossible . . . his love. -Ballantine Books, 1992.


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Currently reading

Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis: The Untold Story by Barbara Leaming