CURL UP WITH BOOK BEGINNINGS/FRIDAY 56 – “THE LIAR”

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Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

What fun it is to share excerpts from upcoming reads!  Mine today is from a book by Nora Roberts, The Liar.

 

 

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Beginning:  In the big house—and Shelby would always think of it as the big house—she sat in her husband’s big leather chair at his big important desk.  The color of the chair was espresso.  Not brown.  Richard had been very exact about that sort of thing.  The desk itself, so sleep and shiny, was African zebra wood, and custom-made for him in Italy.

***

56:  By noon she was winding, winding up through the green with her window half down so she could smell the mountains.  The pine, the rivers and streams.  Here there was no snow.

***

Blurb:  The extraordinary new novel by the #1 New York Times–bestselling author of The Collector.

Shelby Foxworth lost her husband. Then she lost her illusions …

The man who took her from Tennessee to an exclusive Philadelphia suburb left her in crippling debt. He was an adulterer and a liar, and when Shelby tracks down his safe-deposit box, she finds multiple IDs. The man she loved wasn’t just dead. He never really existed.

Shelby takes her three-year-old daughter and heads south to seek comfort in her hometown, where she meets someone new: Griff Lott, a successful contractor. But her husband had secrets she has yet to discover. Even in this small town, surrounded by loved ones, danger is closer than she knows—and threatens Griff, as well. And an attempted murder is only the beginning …

***

What do you think?  Do the excerpts pique your interest?  I know I am eager to plunge into this one.

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LET’S CURL UP WITH BOOK BEGINNINGS/FRIDAY 56 – “THE AFTER WIFE”

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Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

 

Today I’m spotlighting a book I purchased a few months ago:  The After Wife, by Gigi Levangie Grazer.

 

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Beginning:  (Prologue)

“Hi, my name is Hannah…and I’m a widow.”

Three in the morning.  Again.  Like any good therapist, my bathroom mirror has infinite patience.

***

56:  There was so much I wanted to know.  Was there heaven and hell?  Was Anna Nicole Smith sorry she missed the reality show craze?  And John, where was John?

***

Blurb:  L.A. is no place for widows. This is what forty-four-year-old Hannah Bernal quickly discovers after the tragic death of her handsome and loving husband, John. Misery and red-rimmed eyes are little tolerated in the land of the beautiful. But life stumbles on: Hannah’s sweet three-year-old daughter, Ellie, needs to be dropped off at her overpriced preschool, while Hannah herself must get back to work in order to pay the bills on “Casa Sugar,” the charming Spanish-styled bungalow they call home.

Fortunately, Hannah has her “Grief Team” for emotional support: earth mother and fanatical animal lover Chloe, who finds a potential blog post in every moment; aspiring actress Aimee, who has her cosmetic surgeon on speed dial; and Jay, Hannah’s TV producing partner, who has a penchant for Mr. Wrong. But after a series of mishaps and bizarre occurrences, one of which finds Hannah in a posh Santa Monica jail cell, her friends start to fear for her sanity. To make matters worse, John left their financial affairs in a disastrous state. And when Hannah is dramatically fired from her latest producing gig, she finds herself in danger of losing her house, her daughter, and her mind.

One night, standing in her backyard under a majestic avocado tree, in the throes of grief, Hannah breaks down and asks, “Why?” The answer that comes back—Why not?—begins an astounding journey of discovery and transformation that leads Hannah to her own truly extraordinary life after death.

***

What do you think?  Does this story pique your curiosity?  I hope you’ll stop by and leave your comments and links.

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Curl up with Book Beginnings/Friday 56: “Small Blessings”

Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

Today I’m happy to share an ARC from next week’s list:  Small Blessings, by Martha Woodroof, an inspiring tale of a small-town college professor, a remarkable new woman at the bookshop, and the ten-year old son he never knew he had.

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Beginning:  There she was, as welcome in this insular community as fresh air in a multiplex, a woman who, rumor had it, risked being happy.  Tom had heard the most about her from Russell Jacobs, his colleague in the English Department, and now he was looking at her in the flesh, at this tall, slender, dark-haired creature, oddly stylish in her ill-fitting, baggy trousers and white T-shirt.

***

56:  Agnes hesitated, then shook her head decidedly.  “No, I’m teetering on the edge of maudlin as it is.  I hate maudlin drunks.”

“It beats argumentative ones.”

***

Blurb:  Tom Putnam has resigned himself to a quiet and half-fulfilled life. An English professor in a sleepy college town, he spends his days browsing the Shakespeare shelves at the campus bookstore, managing the oddball faculty in his department and caring, alongside his formidable mother-in-law, for his wife Marjory, a fragile shut-in with unrelenting neuroses, a condition exacerbated by her discovery of Tom’s brief and misguided affair with a visiting poetess a decade earlier.

Then, one evening at the bookstore, Tom and Marjory meet Rose Callahan, the shop’s charming new hire, and Marjory invites Rose to their home for dinner, out of the blue, her first social interaction since her breakdown. Tom wonders if it’s a sign that change is on the horizon, a feeling confirmed upon his return home, where he opens a letter from his former paramour, informing him he’d fathered a son who is heading Tom’s way on a train.  His mind races at the possibility of having a family after so many years of loneliness. And it becomes clear change is coming whether Tom’s ready or not.
A heartwarming story with a charmingly imperfect cast of characters to cheer for, Small Blessings‘s wonderfully optimistic heart that reminds us that sometimes, when it feels like life has veered irrevocably off track, the track shifts in ways we never can have imagined.
***
I have been eagerly awaiting this book, so now I am ready to totally engage with it.  What do you think?  Are you intrigued?
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CURL UP WITH A GOOD BOOK FOR FRIDAY BOOK BEGINNINGS & THE FRIDAY 56

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Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

Wow!  The week has flown by, and I haven’t done much blogging.  So I’m happy to share from a book I’m reading:  Twelve to Murder, by Lauren Carr.  We’re back in Deep Creek Lake, Maryland, with Mac Faraday and friends.

Beginning:  (Prologue)

Stillman Mansion on Deep Creek Lake, Maryland

“Austin is back this year,” Olivia said in rhythm with the pace she had set for her power walk.

Two paces behind his wife, Roland took note of the white stone mansion along the chilly lakeshore.  The mansion looked all closed up.  All was quiet, as it was with many of the estates along the lake in the early spring.

***

56:  The smile that had come to the corners of his lips disappeared.  Sheriff Turow thrust a finger in the police chief’s direction as if to make his point.  “You’ve screwed up things enough for one day, O’Callaghan.”

***

Blurb:  Two people are brutally murdered in their summer place on Deep Creek Lake. Suspected of the murders, former child star and one-time teenybopper idol Lenny Frost takes innocent bystanders hostage in a local pub and demands that Mac Faraday find the killer. Can Mac save the hostages and himself from the wrath of the enraged has-been by piecing together the clues in less than twelve hours, or will it be a fatal last call at the stroke of midnight?

***

What do you think?  Does it grab you?  I know that I am always eager to find out more about Mac Faraday and the characters of Deep Creek Lake.

CURL UP WITH BOOK BEGINNINGS & THE FRIDAY 56 – THE TULIP EATERS

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Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

Today I’m eager to curl up with this ARC called The Tulip Eaters, by Antoinette van Heugten.

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Beginning:  November, 1980

Nora balanced the grocery bag on one hip and inserted her key into the lock of the door leading from the garage into the house.  This was the best moment of every day.  Rose.  Her beautiful baby—almost six months now.

***

56:  Richards took Nora’s shaking hands into his own.  They were warm, but Nora drew no comfort from them.  He probably does this for every mother with a missing child, she thought.

***

Blurb:  It’s the stuff of nightmares: Nora de Jong returns home from work one ordinary day to find her mother has been murdered. Her infant daughter is missing. And the only clue is the body of an unknown man on the living-room floor, clutching a Luger in his cold, dead hand. 

Frantic to find Rose, Nora puts aside her grief and frustration to start her own search. But the contents of a locked metal box she finds in her parents’ attic leave her with as many questions as answers—and suggest the killer was not a stranger. Saving her daughter means delving deeper into her family’s darkest history, leading Nora half a world away to Amsterdam, where her own unsettled past and memories of painful heartbreak rush back to haunt her. 

As Nora feverishly pieces together the truth from an old family diary, she’s drawn back to a city under Nazi occupation, where her mother’s alliances may have long ago sealed her own–and Rose’s—fate.

***

I like the sound of this one…I just know that I’ll be rapidly turning pages.  What are you sharing today?  What drew you to your choice?

BOOK BEGINNINGS & THE FRIDAY 56: “LET ME GO” — JUNE 29

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Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

Today’s featured  book is from next week’s stack.  An Amazon Vine ARC from Chelsea Cain’s Gretchen Lowell/Archie Sheridan series:  Let Me Go.

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Beginning:  Archie Sheridan had a paper birthday hat on his head and six bullets in his front pocket.  The bullets rattled when he moved, making a clinking sound that no one else seemed able to hear.  The hat’s tight elastic band dug at his neck.  He pulled at it, feeling the imprint of a ligature mark forming.

***

56:  (As Susan prepares for a party):  …Once Susan was deemed properly gussied up, Star had presented her with a rhinestone-encrusted mask at the end of a long black wand.  It was a female fantasy cliche:  being whisked off to a ball and dressed up like Cinderella.  In reality, it just felt creepy.

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Blurb:  Detective Archie Sheridan just has to get through the next few days, then his birthday and Halloween will be over. But with escaped serial killer Gretchen Lowell on the loose, the investigation into the murder of a DEA agent demanding his attention, and journalist Susan Ward showing up at his apartment needing a favor, it’s going to be a long weekend.

Soon Archie finds himself crashing a masked ball on a private island owned by Jack Reynolds, a notorious local drug kingpin. By morning, Archie is back on pain killers, a guest is dead and Archie quickly realizes that little is what it seems. One thing is clear: Gretchen is back, and Archie’s nemesis and sometimes lover has something special in mind for the birthday boy, something she’s been planning for a long, long time. On Halloween Eve, with time running out, and the life of someone close to Archie on the line, Archie knows his only chance is to give Gretchen exactly what she wants. But Gretchen will prove more horrifying, and unpredictable, than Archie could ever imagine.

Back with her most thrilling novel yet, Chelsea Cain delivers the pinnacle of what fans of this series have come to expect: sex, murder, twists, dark wit, and some of the best characters in the genre.

***

I love this series!  An elusive serial killer, a determined detective…and lots of fun along the way.  Now…what are you sharing?

LET’S CURL UP & TALK BOOKS: BOOK BEGINNINGS & THE FRIDAY 56 — JUST BREATHE — MAY 10

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Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

Today I’m featuring a book from Mt. TBR:  Just Breathe, by Susan Wiggs.

Beginning:  After a solid year of visits to the clinic, Sarah was starting to find the decor annoying.  Maybe the experts here believed earth tones had a soothing effect on anxious, aspiring parents.  Or perhaps that the cheery burble of a wall fountain might cause an infertile woman to spontaneously drop an egg like an overly productive laying hen.

***

56:  Now that he was out of the picture, there was nothing standing between her and old memories, and she fell into the past like Alice down the rabbit hole, grasping at stray roots on her way to the bottom.

***

Blurb:  Chicago cartoonist Sarah Moon tackles life’s real issues with a healthy dose of sharp wit in her syndicated comic strip Just Breathe. As Sarah’s cartoon alter ego, Shirl, undergoes artificial insemination, her situation begins to mirror Sarah’s own difficult attempts to conceive. However, Sarah’s dreams of the future did not include her husband’s infidelity: snag number two in Sarah’s so-called perfect life.

With Chicago and her marriage in the rearview mirror, she flees to the small Northern California coastal town where she grew up, a place she couldn’t wait to leave. Now she finds herself revisiting the past, an emotionally distant father and the unanswered questions left by her mother’s death. As she comes to terms with her lost marriage, Sarah encounters a man she never expected to meet again: Will Bonner, the high school heartthrob she’d skewered mercilessly in her old comics. Now a local firefighter, he’s been through some changes himself. But just as her heart is about to reawaken, Sarah discovers she is pregnant. With her ex’s twins.

It’s hardly the most traditional of new beginnings, but who says life and love are predictable or perfect? The winds of change have led Sarah here. Now all she can do is just close her eyes and breathe.

***

I like the sound of these snippets….I wonder why it’s taken me so long to dive into this one?

What is on your list for today?  Come on by and let’s chat.