RAINY DAY READING….

Good morning!  It is raining here…and it rained all day yesterday, too.  According to the weather report, it will be rainy today, tomorrow, and…sunshine on Sunday!  Yay!

After having lovely weather last week and on the weekend at the beach, I was disappointed by the return of rain.  But now I’m thinking that it’s a sign that I should stay indoors…and read!

My reading was pretty good last week, but so far this week, I’m only on my second book.  Sigh.

My stack of review books includes six from NetGalley, ranging from 5/6 review date to 7/25.  Two in May, two in June, and another two in July.  So…not bad.

But I also have another one to read this month (from an author), and a Vine book that I have to read sometime soon.

So…here are the books up next:

Reading:

Beach Breeze, by Joanne DeMaio

 

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Slightly South of Simple, by Kristy Woodson Harvey (Book One in a new series)

 

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The Perfect Stranger (e-book), by Megan Miranda, from NetGalley…and I had written down a 5/6 release, but it will be released on 4/11, according to Amazon!  So this one will be next!

 

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Definitely I must focus on these three for now.

How do you organize your review books?  What keeps you requesting books, even when you have a few already?  For me, I find that the books I have been ogling for a while are a definite “must request,” so that’s how I got into this tangle.

Enjoy!

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RAINY DAY READING: CURLING UP WITH BOOKS & NETFLIX

When I woke up this morning, I peered out the window, as I usually do…and I was surprised to see the rain.  Yes, it was a little cloudy yesterday, but I hadn’t actually realized it might rain.

 

But…it’s okay!  I planned to stay home today and curl up and read…and one of my favorite Netflix shows has added Season II today (Grace and Frankie).

 

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My viewing station in the bedroom is all ready…because of my changes this week, with several switcheroos.  Check my Shake-ups post, or the one that started it all, Favorite Places:

 

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But I have reading to accomplish first….I’m currently reading What We Find, by Robyn Carr…Book One in the Sullivan’s Crossing series.

 

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Between the urban bustle of Denver and the high-stress environment of a career in neurosurgery, Maggie Sullivan has hit a wall. When an emergency high-risk procedure results in the death of a teenager, Maggie finds herself in the middle of a lawsuit—and experiencing levels of anxiety she’s never faced before. She knows she needs to slow down before she burns out completely, and the best place she can think to do that is Sullivan’s Crossing.

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I’m loving the setting and the characters…hope to finish this one today!

I changed the theme and header here last night….I always love making changes, whether they are in my home interiors…or on my blogs.

What do you enjoy fixing or changing?  Or do you like things to remain the same?

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RAINY DAY READING: SUNSHINE INTERRUPTUS

After a week of perfect spring weather, all sunshine and blooms, I woke up to a rainy day!  But I was planning to stay home and read, anyway, so it works for me.

Last night I started one of my week’s stack of reads…a book that has been languishing on Pippa since September 2014.  Yes, imagine that!

Dream of the Blue Room, by Michelle Richmond, is one I featured yesterday on my Bookish Fridays post. 

 

 

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I started it last night, and plan to keep reading today.  Lyrical prose that is as dreamy as the title, we are also brought into some very real moments.

I read and loved The Year of Fog by this author…but I read it in my pre-blogging life…(was there life before blogging?), so I don’t have a review of it.  I just remember loving it.

 

 

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A more recent read by this author, Golden State, earned five stars from me. (Click for my review).

 

 

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If I finish my chosen book today, I will probably start reading North of Here, by Laurel Saville, which fascinates me because I know nothing about it…but I love the cover!  LOL  I did read a memoir by the author, though, Unraveling Anne, about her mother.  Haunting story.  Click title for my review.

 

 

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Here’s the blurb for North of HereThe sounds of unexpected tragedies—a roll of thunder, the crash of metal on metal—leave Miranda in shock amid the ruins of her broken family.

As she searches for new meaning in her life, Miranda finds quiet refuge with her family’s handyman, Dix, in his cabin in the dark forests of the Adirondack Mountains. Dix is kind, dependable, and good with an ax—the right man to help the sheltered Miranda heal—but ultimately, her sadness creates a void even Dix can’t fill.

When a man from her distant past turns up, the handsome idealist now known as Darius, he offers Miranda a chance to do meaningful work at The Source, a secluded property filled with his nature worshipers. Miranda feels this charismatic guru is the key to remaking her life, but her grief and desire for love also create an opportunity for his deception. And in her desperate quest to find herself after losing almost everything, Miranda and Dix could pay a higher price than they ever imagined

 

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So…that’s my reading for the day…I think.  I will also be bingeing on Netflix shows and movies.  What do you enjoy on a rainy day?  Or just a weekend?

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RAINY DAY READING: DIPPING INTO ANOTHER THRILLER

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It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring...Oh, yes, it has been raining almost all weekend, and not a gentle sprinkle.  Coming down fairly hard.

So today I’m joining Jenn, at Musing Mondays, to talk books, for my Rainy Day Reading post.

Here are some prompts:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Which characters (from which book) do you think deserve their own spin-off story? Why?

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Okay…I took a break to refill my coffee mug…and yes, today I’m drinking out of the one pictured above…and I’m contemplating the topics.

I’ll go with my current read.  I’ve been waiting to start this one, as it’s a NetGalley e-ARC.  No One Knows, by J. T. Ellison, will be released on March 22.

 

 

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In an obsessive mystery as thrilling as The Girl on the Train and The Husband’s Secret, New York Times bestselling author J.T. Ellison will make you question every twist in her page-turning novel—and wonder which of her vividly drawn characters you should trust.

The day Aubrey Hamilton’s husband is declared dead by the state of Tennessee should bring closure so she can move on with her life. But Aubrey doesn’t want to move on; she wants Josh back. It’s been five years since he disappeared, since their blissfully happy marriage—they were happy, weren’t they?—screeched to a halt and Aubrey became the prime suspect in his disappearance. Five years of emptiness, solitude, loneliness, questions. Why didn’t Josh show up at his friend’s bachelor party? Was he murdered? Did he run away? And now, all this time later, who is the mysterious yet strangely familiar figure suddenly haunting her new life?

In No One Knows, the New York Times bestselling coauthor of the Nicholas Drummond series expertly peels back the layers of a complex woman who is hiding dark secrets beneath her unassuming exterior. This masterful thriller for fans of Gillian Flynn, Liane Moriarty, and Paula Hawkins will pull readers into a you’ll-never-guess merry-go-round of danger and deception. Round and round and round it goes, where it stops…no one knows.

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I have barely started it, as I was bingeing on House of Cards on Netflix yesterday…and watching favorite TV shows last night.  But so far, I’m loving it.

I always get a little annoyed when a blurb starts out with comparisons to other books.  It feels as though the marketing people are doing a copycat thing that sets people up to be disappointed.

No two books are the same, hopefully…and I am counting on this one to carry its own weight.

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What are you musing about today?

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RAINY DAY READING: ASSORTED BOOKS & THOUGHTS…

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After several sunny days, I woke up to rain today.  Just a bit, but enough to justify a Rainy Day Reading post.

Before I started writing here, though, I was visiting blogs and seeing books that are coming soon…and recalling that I didn’t do a Waiting on Wednesday post last night.  An oversight.  But I was engrossed in Netflix, watching movies and a show called Lie to Me.

On March 22, a book I’ve been curious about is going to be released.  The Nest, by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney, is a warm, funny and acutely perceptive debut novel about four adult siblings and the fate of the shared inheritance that has shaped their choices and their lives.

 

 

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Every family has its problems. But even among the most troubled, the Plumb family stands out as spectacularly dysfunctional. Years of simmering tensions finally reach a breaking point on an unseasonably cold afternoon in New York City as Melody, Beatrice, and Jack Plumb gather to confront their charismatic and reckless older brother, Leo, freshly released from rehab. Months earlier, an inebriated Leo got behind the wheel of a car with a nineteen-year-old waitress as his passenger. The ensuing accident has endangered the Plumbs’ joint trust fund, “The Nest,” which they are months away from finally receiving. Meant by their deceased father to be a modest mid-life supplement, the Plumb siblings have watched The Nest’s value soar along with the stock market and have been counting on the money to solve a number of self-inflicted problems.

Melody, a wife and mother in an upscale suburb, has an unwieldy mortgage and looming college tuition for her twin teenage daughters. Jack, an antiques dealer, has secretly borrowed against the beach cottage he shares with his husband, Walker, to keep his store open. And Bea, a once-promising short-story writer, just can’t seem to finish her overdue novel. Can Leo rescue his siblings and, by extension, the people they love? Or will everyone need to reimagine the futures they’ve envisioned? Brought together as never before, Leo, Melody, Jack, and Beatrice must grapple with old resentments, present-day truths, and the significant emotional and financial toll of the accident, as well as finally acknowledge the choices they have made in their own lives.

This one sounds like a hot mess of a family…the kind I can relate to!

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I started reading The Shadow Year, by Hannah Richell, and even though it was engaging me, I needed something more…so I am also engrossed in Losing Me, by Sue Margolis….and I am now going back and forth, never bored!

 

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I must admit that Losing Me is ahead by a bit.  Something about the MC’s narrative voice that grabbed me.  Probably because she is an older character, faced with some of the issues we all face as we come to the end of our primary careers…and are struggling to decide what to do next.

I, personally, did not have that problem, as I already knew what I wanted to do in my next phase of life.  I had already started writing my first novel, Miles to Go, which I then placed on the back burner to write and publish An Accidental Life.

 

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It wasn’t long until I discovered the world of blogging (in 2008)….and what happened next is an old story.  The first year, I didn’t do much, and then I discovered the blogging community. 

Even though I have six books out there now, all on Amazon, I am even more obsessed with the blogging world.  For a time, I had twenty sites, then eleven for quite a while...now, I have SIX.  Much better.

My website:  Laurel-Rain Snow Creations, takes you into my books, my blogs, and what’s happening next.

Here is my Amazon Author’s Page.

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So….as the rain falls, and as I curl up to read, I’ll be thinking of my blogging world, and how to connect next.    Below, check out my March calendar, open to all the possibilities.  It is my Ireland calendar, which I always have in my bedroom, along with photos from Ireland, snapped by my photographer son Craig.

 

My Ireland calendar

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What do you love to do on a rainy day?  Come on by and share….

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RAINY DAY READING: MONDAY MUSINGS

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Welcome to another Rainy Day Reading post.  It is raining here again, so I am eager to curl up and burrow into my books.  I am also musing about my reading, along with host Jenn, at A Daily Rhythm.

Here are some of her options to contemplate:

 

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

 

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: Do you have any particular “quirks” when it comes to reading? (eg. taking notes while reading, etc)

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First, I want to share my thoughts on What Was Mine, by Helen Klein Ross, my current read.

 

 

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Simply told but deeply affecting, in the bestselling tradition of Alice McDermott and Tom Perrotta, this urgent novel unravels the heartrending yet unsentimental tale of a woman who kidnaps a baby in a superstore—and gets away with it for twenty-one years.

While the idea of feeling anything but horror for such a woman would normally be a predominant one, I found myself empathizing with Lucy, the “kidnapper,” whose almost obsessive desire for a baby leads to such a horrific act.  The author skillfully takes us through her thought processes, breaking them down into manageable moments that slowly turn into something almost palatable…and then, just when we think we can live with what she did, the repercussions start happening.  Life comes undone.

With part of the story in Lucy’s voice, we come to understand her.  But what about all those whose lives were damaged?  We learn more as the story draws to a conclusion.

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My reading habits could be described as “quirks,” since I usually only read one book at a time, and take notes as I go.  Sometimes I pick up another book, too, if it is a different genre than the primary book I’m reading.  I have to write the review immediately after finishing…and I may have a Word doc going as I read, writing preliminary thoughts, so that I can post the review right away.

Then I move on.

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What are your habits?  What are you reading?

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RAINY DAY READING CAN BE RESTLESS READING

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Good morning, and welcome to another day of Rainy Day Reading.  It is the morning after a restless reading night.  Perhaps I could sense the rain coming…or maybe it was the weather man’s prediction that tipped me off.  LOL.

In any case, I was flipping between books, having trouble settling on any one book.  I had been reading Gloria Steinem’s Life on the Road yesterday…and I’m halfway through it.  I’m enjoying it, but sometimes I need to break up my nonfiction with a little make-believe.

 

 

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So I found a little book on Pippa that seemed very different from the memoir:  Lucky Us, by Amy Bloom.  I’ve never read Amy, but I’ve heard good things.  Well, it’s not that I didn’t like the book, but I was only a couple chapters in when I set it aside…for later.

 

 

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Then…I grabbed Secret Sisters, which I had been planning to read next anyway…and soon I was lost in the pages.  It will definitely be my “other” book for the rest of the week. 

 

 

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From the very first page, I felt myself sucked into the world of the characters:  a frightening opener, a mystery, and a secret that has lasted for decades…and now it is coming out!

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To sum up my feeling for the day:  my daughter sent this image to me, and I think it says a lot about me.  What do you think?

 

 

Hippie image

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RAINY DAY READING: BOOKS & MOVIES

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The rain is definitely coming down today!  I have posted about Rainy Day Reading when there was just a hint of rain, but today the sidewalks and my patio are drenched.  Luckily, the patio which I had not swept or dusted in a while is now glistening.  Or perhaps it is simply muddy.  The berries that constantly drop on the ground (see the sidewalk view below) are now really annoying….

 

 

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And the leaves I haven’t swept away are now wet clumps….

 

 

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So the state of the outdoors is an even more compelling reason to curl up and read.  Right?

I am intrigued and thoroughly engaged in The Swans of Fifth Avenue, by Melanie Benjamin.  A NetGalley e-ARC with a publication date of January 26, it brings the reader right into the glamorous and glitzy world of Truman Capote and his “swans,” those elegant women who felt safe with him, and therefore shared too many secrets.

 

 

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I have two movies based on Truman Capote and Harper Lee:  Capote, the story of his world when he was writing In Cold Blood; and Harper Lee’s involvement in that story and in his life, in Infamous.

The movies, as well as the book, give me a further glimpse of the world in which the characters lived.

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What else am I reading today?  I am considering The Opposite of Everyone, by Joshilyn Jackson…and/or Secret Sisters, by Jayne Ann Krentz.

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This evening, I will venture forth to help celebrate the birthday of my youngest grandson, Noah, who turned thirteen today!  A teenager…oh, no!  Does this mean that he will soon become annoying?  LOL.

Probably not right away….here he is (below) at Christmas.  He was totally absorbed in his video games.

 

Noah - Christmas 2015

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What do you love to do on a rainy day?  Are you having a rainy day?

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RAINY DAY READING: BOOKS, OBSESSIONS, & HOLIDAYS

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Good morning, Rainy Day Readers…it’s another Monday on Rainy Days & Mondays, and while it’s not raining at the moment, it looks like rain as I gaze out the window.

I’m linking to Jenn’s Musing Mondays today.

She has a host of suggestions for us today, but I’m going to tell you about the two books I’m currently reading…and why they are perfect for a rainy day.

I started The Things We Keep, an e-ARC by Sally Hepworth, and I am fascinated by the storyline, the characters, and the suspense I already feel as there are hints of things awry in the residential facility where our MC Anna is living….

 

 

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Then I picked up November 9, by Colleen Hoover…and I don’t usually read more than one book at a time, but I felt restless.  It works, because the two stories couldn’t be more different. 

Fallon meets Ben, an aspiring novelist, the day before her scheduled cross-country move. Their untimely attraction leads them to spend Fallon’s last day in L.A. together, and her eventful life becomes the creative inspiration Ben has always sought for his novel. Over time and amidst the various relationships and tribulations of their own separate lives, they continue to meet on the same date every year. Until one day Fallon becomes unsure if Ben has been telling her the truth or fabricating a perfect reality for the sake of the ultimate plot twist.

 

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Doesn’t that synopsis grab you?  I have heard only good things about both books I’m reading…and that is perfect for a holiday week, don’t you think?  And for a rainy day, too, as they are both so engaging that I just want to curl up and read.

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As the holiday approaches, I’ve been having that itch to change up a blog or two…but my most recent change was the theme and header at my website.

 

PicMonkey Collage-4th version

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Here’s a screenshot:

 

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My holiday decorations this year were minimal…and I could bring out more….but I’m thinking “less is more.”

 

PicMonkey Collage-holidays - FB

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What are you reading, watching, or obsessing about this season?

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RAINY DAY READING: “THE OPPOSITE OF EVERYONE”

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It has been raining here, on and off…and when it rains, my bookish life becomes cozier.  Today I’m linking to Jenn, at A Daily Rhythm, to muse about bookish things.

Here are some of the topics:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: What books are you hoping to get for Christmas (whether as gifts, or ones you’ll purchase yourself)?

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I love reading on a rainy day, and the kind of book I love to curl up with is one that fully engages me.  It might be a mystery, a thriller, or just a great family story…or maybe all of these ingredients will be in the book.

I am eagerly awaiting a new review book I requested this week:  The Opposite of Everyone, by Joshilyn Jackson.

 

 

 

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A fiercely independent divorce lawyer learns the power of family and connection when she receives a cryptic message from her estranged mother in this bittersweet, witty novel from the nationally bestselling author of Someone Else’s Love Story and gods in Alabama—an emotionally resonant tale about the endurance of love and the power of stories to shape and transform our lives.

Born in Alabama, Paula Vauss spent the first decade of her life on the road with her free-spirited young mother, Kai, an itinerant storyteller who blended Hindu mythology with southern oral tradition to re-invent their history as they roved. But everything, including Paula’s birth name Kali Jai, changed when she told a story of her own—one that landed Kai in prison and Paula in foster care. Separated, each holding secrets of her own, the intense bond they once shared was fractured.

These days, Paula has reincarnated herself as a tough-as-nails divorce attorney with a successful practice in Atlanta. While she hasn’t seen Kai in fifteen years, she’s still making payments on that Karmic debt—until the day her last check is returned in the mail, along with a mysterious note: “I am going on a journey, Kali. I am going back to my beginning; death is not the end. You will be the end. We will meet again, and there will be new stories. You know how Karma works.”

Then Kai’s most treasured secret literally lands on Paula’s doorstep, throwing her life into chaos and transforming her from only child to older sister. Desperate to find her mother before it’s too late, Paula sets off on a journey of discovery that will take her back to the past and into the deepest recesses of her heart. With the help of her ex-lover Birdwine, an intrepid and emotionally volatile private eye who still carries a torch for her, this brilliant woman, an expert at wrecking families, now has to figure out how to put one back together—her own.

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I am prepared to curl up with this one, rainy day or not…but if it rains, everything will be the perfect setting for the unfolding story.  What do you think?

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