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: 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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Book Review: The White Rose

The White Rose - Amy Ewing

Book: The White Rose

 

Author: Amy Ewing

 

Summary: Violet is on the run. After the Duchess of the Lake catches Violet with Ash, the hired companion at the Palace of the Lake, Violet has no choice but to escape the Jewel or face certain death. So along with Ash and her best friend, Raven, Violet runs away from her unbearable life of servitude. But no one said leaving the Jewel would be easy. As they make their way through the circles of the Lone City, Regimentals track their every move, and the trio barely manages to make it out unscathed and into the safe haven they were promised - a mysterious house in the Farm. But there's a rebellion brewing, and Violet has found herself in the middle of it. Alongside a new ally, Violet discovers her Auguries are much more powerful than she ever imagined. But is she strong enough to rise up against the Jewel and everything she has ever known? With twists and turns that will have readers on the edges of their seats, The White Rose is a raw, captivating sequel to The Jewel, and fans won't be able to put it down until the final shocking moments. -Harper Teen, 2015.

 

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Book Review: River Road

River Road: A Novel - Carol Goodman

Book: River Road

 

Author: Carol Goodman

 

Genre: Fiction/Present Day/Thriller/Mystery

 

Summary: Nan Lewis - a creative writing professor at a college in upstate New York - is driving home from a faculty holiday party after finding out she's been denied tenure. On her way, she hits a deer, but when she gets out of her car to look for it, the deer is nowhere to be found. Eager to get home and out of the oncoming snowstorm, Nan is forced to leave her car at the bottom of her snowy driveway to wait out the longest night of the year - and the lowest point of her life . . . The next morning, Nan is woken up by a police officer at her door with terrible news - one of her students, Leia Dawson, was killed in a hit-and-run on River Road the night before. And because of her damage to her car, Nan is a suspect. In the days following the accident, Nan is shunned by the same community that rallied around her when her own daughter was killed in an eerily similar accident six years prior. When Nan begins finding disturbing tokens that recall the death of her daughter, Nan suspects the two accidents are connected. As she digs further, she discovers that everyone around her, including Leia, is hiding secrets. But can she uncover them, clear her name, and figure out who really killed Leia before her reputation is destroyed for good? -Touchstone, 2016.

 

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Book Review: The Rose Garden

The Rose Garden - Susanna Kearsley

Book: The Rose Garden

 

Author: Susanna Kearsley

 

Genre: Fiction/Sci-Fi/History

 

Summary: Eva Ward returns to the only place she truly belongs, the old house on the Cornish coast, seeking happiness in memories of childhood summers. There she finds mysterious voices and hidden pathways that sweep her not only into the past, but also into the arms of a man who is not of her time. But Eva must confront her own ghosts, as well as those of long ago. As she begins to question her place in the present, she comes to realize that she too must decide where she really belongs. -Sourcebooks, 2011.

 

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Book Review: Seduction

Seduction: A Novel of Suspense - M.J. Rose

Book: Seduction

 

Author: M.J. Rose

 

Genre: Fiction/Mystery/Thriller

 

Summary: Grieving his daughter's death, Victor Hugo initiated seances from his home on the Isle of Jersey in order to reestablish contact with her. In the process, he claimed to have communicated with Plato, Shakespeare, Dante - and even the devil himself. Hugo's transcriptions of these conversations have all been published. Or so it has been believed. . .  A hundred years later, recovering from her own great loss, mythologist Jac L'Etoile is invited to Jersey to uncover a secret about the island's mysterious Celtic roots. She's greeted by Neolithic monuments, medieval castles, and hidden caves. But the man who has invited her there, a troubled soul named Theo Gaspard, hopes she'll help him discover something quite different . . . something that will threaten their sanity and put their very lives at stake. - Atria, 2013

 

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Currently reading

The Crown by Kiera Cass