BOOKISH FRIDAY: “NEVER COMING HOME”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my newest books:  Never Coming Home, by Hannah Mary McKinnon.

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Book Beginning:

(Sunday)

The steady noise from the antique French carriage clock on the mantelpiece had somehow amplified itself, a rhythmic tick-tick, tick-tick, which usually went unnoticed.  After I’d been sitting in the same position and holding my ailing mother-in-law’s hand for almost an hour, the incessant clicking had long wormed its way deep into my brain where it grated on my nerves, stirring up fantasies of hammers, bent copper coils, and shattered glass.

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Friday 56:

I knew technology, as great as it is in so many ways, could also be my downfall.  It’s everywhere—there are cameras all over the place, watching our every move.

***

Synopsis: Lucas Forester didn’t hate his wife. Michelle was brilliant, sophisticated and beautiful. Sure, she had extravagant spending habits, that petty attitude, a total disregard for anyone below her status. But she also had a lot to offer. Most notably: wealth that only the one percent could comprehend.

For years, Lucas has been honing a flawless plan to inherit Michelle’s fortune. Unfortunately, it involves taking a hit out on her.

Every track is covered, no trace left behind, and now Lucas plays the grieving husband so well he deserves an award. But when a shocking photo and cryptic note show up on his doorstep, Lucas goes from hunter to prey. 

Someone is on to him. And they’re closing in.

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “ADULT ASSEMBLY REQUIRED”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my new books:  Adult Assembly Required, by Abbi Waxman.

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Book Beginning:

Liz Quinn, the manager of Knight’s, one of the few remaining independent bookstores in Los Angeles, was not someone you’d describe as softhearted.  Yes, she had adopted a stray cat who’d had kittens in the store, and yes, she had a new relationship she sometimes blushed over, but generally speaking she viewed humanity with a jaundiced eye.

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Friday 56:

Polly, Maggie, and Bob stared at her, and she felt herself getting redder.  “I’m fine now.”  She added inconsequentially, “It was on the news.”

***

Synopsis:

When Laura Costello moves to Los Angeles, trying to escape an overprotective family and the haunting memories of a terrible accident, she doesn’t expect to be homeless after a week. (She’s pretty sure she didn’t start that fire — right?) She also doesn’t expect to find herself adopted by a rogue bookseller, installed in a lovely but completely illegal boardinghouse, or challenged to save a losing trivia team from ignominy…but that’s what happens. Add a regretful landlady, a gorgeous housemate and an ex-boyfriend determined to put himself back in the running and you’ll see why Laura isn’t really sure she’s cut out for this adulting thing. Luckily for her, her new friends Nina, Polly and Impossibly Handsome Bob aren’t sure either, but maybe if they put their heads (and hearts) together they’ll be able to make it work.

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “THE ROAD TRIP”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is The Road Trip, by Beth O’Leary.

Book Beginning:

(Dylan)

“The road of friendship never did run smooth, is what I’m saying,” Marcus tells me, fidgeting with his seat belt.

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Friday 56:

“Marcus.”  Dylan’s voice turns sharp. “Don’t say something you’re going to regret.”

***

Synopsis:  What if the end of the road is just the beginning?

Four years ago, Dylan and Addie fell in love under the Provence sun. Wealthy Oxford student Dylan was staying at his friend Cherry’s enormous French villa; wild child Addie was spending her summer as the on-site caretaker. Two years ago, their relationship officially ended. They haven’t spoken since.

Today, Dylan’s and Addie’s lives collide again. It’s the day before Cherry’s wedding, and Addie and Dylan crash cars at the start of the journey there. The car Dylan was driving is wrecked, and the wedding is in rural Scotland—he’ll never get there on time by public transport.

So, along with Dylan’s best friend, Addie’s sister, and a random guy on Facebook who needed a ride, they squeeze into a space-challenged Mini and set off across Britain. Cramped into the same space, Dylan and Addie are forced to confront the choices they made that tore them apart—and ask themselves whether that final decision was the right one after all.

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “THE HOMEWRECKERS”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my new books:  The Homewreckers, by Mary Kay Andrews.

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Book Beginnings:

(Prologue:  A Dark and Stormy Night)

The wind howled and shrieked and the waves slapped angrily against the seawall, huge, looming masses of clouds all but blotting out the pale yellow crescent moon.  Rain was blowing in now too, razor-sharp shards slashing at her bare legs.

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Friday 56:

“What?” Hattie shouted into the phone.  “That’s crazy!  A beachfront house on Tybee for under thirty thousand?”

***

Synopsis:

Hattie Kavanaugh went to work restoring homes for Kavanaugh & Son Restorations at eighteen, married the boss’s son at twenty, and became a widow at twenty-five. Now, she’s passionate about her work, but that’s the only passion in her life. “Never love something that can’t love you back,” is advice her father-in-law gives her, but Hattie doesn’t follow it and falls head-over-heels for a money pit of a house. She’s determined to make it work, but disaster after disaster occurs, and Hattie’s dream might cost Kavanaugh & Son their livelihood. Hattie needs money, and fast.

When a slick Hollywood producer shows up in her hometown of Savannah, Georgia, she gets a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: star in a beach house renovation reality show called The Homewreckers, cast against a male lead who may be a love interest, or may be the ultimate antagonist. Soon, there’s more at stake than bad pipes and dry rot: during the demolition, evidence comes to light that points to the mysterious disappearance of a young wife and mother years before.

With a burned out detective investigating the case, an arsonist on the loose, two men playing with her emotions, and layers upon layers of vintage wallpaper causing havoc, it’s a question of who will flip, who will flop, and if Hattie will ever get her happily-ever-after.

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “JUST LIKE MOTHER”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is a NetGalley ARC that will be released on 5/17/22:  Just Like Mother, by Anne Heltzel.

Beginning: (Prologue)

Mother with the lazy eye spoons soup into our bowls.  “Eat up,” she says.  She smiles, and the eye rolls outward, landing on the crow on the windowsill before it rolls back in.  My cousin and I lift our spoons to our mouths and swallow.

***

Friday 56:

“Thanks, sweetheart.  Maeve?  It’s only Rob with the towels,” she said, but the heat of the water was getting to me.  I was so tired.  Too tired to respond, or even to open my eyes. I made efforts to nod.  My head felt leaden.

***

Synopsis:

The last time Maeve saw her cousin was the night she escaped the cult they were raised in. For the past two decades, Maeve has worked hard to build a normal life in New York City, where she keeps everything—and everyone—at a safe distance.

When Andrea suddenly reappears, Maeve regains the only true friend she’s ever had. Soon she’s spending more time at Andrea’s remote Catskills estate than in her own cramped apartment. Maeve doesn’t even mind that her cousin’s wealthy work friends clearly disapprove of her single lifestyle. After all, Andrea has made her fortune in the fertility industry—baby fever comes with the territory.

The more Maeve immerses herself in Andrea’s world, the more disconnected she feels from her life back in the city; and the cousins’ increasing attachment triggers memories Maeve has fought hard to bury. But confronting the terrors of her childhood may be the only way for Maeve to transcend the nightmare still to come…

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “THE NO-SHOW”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my new books:  The No-Show, by Beth O’Leary.

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Book Beginning:

(Siobhan)

He isn’t here.

Siobhan breathes out slowly through her nose.  She’s aiming for calm, but it reads more angry bull than zen.

***

Friday 56:

Behind them the traffic crawls by, and a bus pulls up at the nearby stop.  A pair of teenage girls stare openly at them as they step off the bus.

***

Synopsis:  Siobhan is a quick-tempered life coach with way too much on her plate. Miranda is a tree surgeon used to being treated as just one of the guys on the job. Jane is a soft-spoken volunteer for the local charity shop with zero sense of self-worth.

These three women are strangers who have only one thing in common: they’ve all been stood up on the same day, the very worst day to be stood up—Valentine’s Day. And, unbeknownst to them, they’ve all been stood up by the same man.

Once they’ve each forgiven him for standing them up, they are all in serious danger of falling in love with a man who may have not just one or two but three women on the go….

Is there more to him than meets the eye? Where was he on Valentine’s Day? And will they each untangle the truth before they all get their hearts broken?

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “A FAMILY AFFAIR”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my new books:  A Family Affair, by Robyn Carr.

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Book Beginning:

Anna McNichol gently grasped her mother’s bent, arthritic hands.  “I don’t know what I’m going to do,” she said. “I will be alone forever.”

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Friday 56:

“But we’re not going to go there now, are we?  Because he’s dead and I’ve been remembering some of the good years.  And there were good years.  Many.  And he was good to you.”

***

Synopsis:

Anna McNichol knows how to take charge. Raised by a single mother, she’s worked to ensure her three children have every advantage she didn’t. And while her marriage has its problems, she values commitment and believes in “till death do us part.” Now an empty nester, she’s at the peak of her career and ready to seize the opportunity to focus on her future.

But life can change in an instant, and when her husband dies suddenly, Anna’s carefully constructed world falls apart. The mysterious young woman at the memorial service confirms her husband had been keeping secrets, and Anna is determined to get to the truth.

For once, she doesn’t have the answers. Her kids are struggling with their grief, her mother’s health is in decline and Anna needs closure. Faced with one challenge after another, she finds support from an unexpected source. And as she puts her life back together, Anna realizes the McNichols may not be perfect but they’ll always be family, and family is forever.

***

What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “THE DETECTIVE’S DAUGHTER”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my new books:  The Detective’s Daughter, by Erica Spindler

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Beginning:

Rourke Conners, 1994

4:05 p.m.

The Hudson Mansion, New Orleans, Louisiana

The first officers had already set up an outer perimeter, closing off one lane of St. Charles Avenue for a half a block in either direction of the scene.  Traffic had slowed to a snarl and drivers were pissed.  Sorry someone was dead, but damn, it was Friday afternoon, places to go, people to see.

***

Friday 56:

“Just got here myself, Partner.  Lunch at my mother-in-law’s.  What’s your excuse?”

“It took a minute to get out of the house, that’s all.”

***

Description:

Your father didn’t kill himself . . .
New Orleans Detective Quinn Conners is haunted by her father’s whiskey-soaked, last words—that he solved the Hudson murder and kidnapping. It wasn’t the first time he’d made that drunken claim, and she didn’t believe him. Twenty-four hours later she found him dead by his own hand.

Quinn’s lived with that guilt for five years, so when she receives an anonymous message saying Your father didn’t kill himself she’s determined to crack the cold case and unearth the truth about her father’s death.

Soon, Quinn finds herself entangled in the web of mystery surrounding Grace Hudson’s disappearance and the powerful, secretive family at the heart of it. In too deep, she faces the most important question of all—is the truth worth dying for?

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “THE SUNDAY GIRL”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is a book that has been languishing on my Kindle:  The Sunday Girl, by Pip Drysdale.

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Book Beginning:  (Sunday, Master Sun said, “The Way of War is a Way of Deception.”)

February 5

Some love affairs change you forever.  Someone comes into your orbit and swivels you on your axis, like the wind working on a rooftop weather vane.  And when they leave, as the wind always does, you are different; you have a new direction.  And it’s not always north.

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Friday 56:

My jaw clenched and my skin recoiled.  All I wanted was to pull my hand away, but I didn’t want to be rude.  I’d forgotten how awful first dates could be.

***

The Sunday Girl delivers a dramatic thriller for any woman who’s ever been involved with a bad, bad man and who knows how it feels to be broken, broken-hearted, and bent on revenge.

Taylor Bishop is hurt, angry, and wants to destroy Angus Hollingsworth in the way he destroyed her. She’s got nothing left to lose, so why not shatter his property, his reputation, and his life.

So Taylor consults The Art of War and makes a plan. Then she takes the next thrilling, irrevocable step—one that will change her life forever. Things quickly spiral into a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse, and caught up in the suspense, Taylor isn’t sure who’s winning.

***

Would you keep reading?

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BOOKISH FRIDAY: “NINE LIVES”

Welcome to another Bookish Friday, in which we  share excerpts from books…and connect with other bloggers who do the same.

Let’s begin the celebration by sharing Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and let’s 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.

Today’s feature is one of my new books:  Nine Lives, by Peter Swanson.

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Book Beginning:

Wednesday, September 14, 5:13 p.m.

Jonathan Grant, unless he let her know ahead of time that he couldn’t make it, always visited on Wednesday evening.  His wife had a standing “girls’ night out” on Wednesdays—occasionally in the city, but usually in New Jersey—so Jonathan would leave the office by five and be at Alison’s one-bedroom apartment in Gramercy Park by five-thirty at the latest.

***

Friday 56:

Friday, September 16, 3:50 p.m.

The second person from the list that Jessica succeeded in finding was Arthur Kruse.  She reached him on his cell phone while he was at work at the hospital, and when she asked about the list, it took him a moment to realize what it was she was talking about.

***

Synopsis:  Nine strangers receive a list with their names on it in the mail. Nothing else, just a list of names on a single sheet of paper. None of the nine people know or have ever met the others on the list. They dismiss it as junk mail, a fluke—until very, very bad things begin happening to people on the list.

First, a well-liked old man is drowned on a beach in the small town of Kennewick, Maine. Then, a father is shot in the back while running through his quiet neighborhood in suburban Massachusetts. A frightening pattern is emerging, but what do these nine people have in common? Their professions range from oncology nurse to aspiring actor, and they’re located all over the country. So why are they all on the list, and who sent it?

FBI agent Jessica Winslow, who is on the list herself, is determined to find out. Could there be some dark secret that binds them all together? Or is this the work of a murderous madman? As the mysterious sender stalks these nine strangers, they find themselves constantly looking over their shoulders, wondering who will be crossed off next…

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Would you keep reading?

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