Tag Archives: Contemporary Women

Review | Where We Belong by Emily Giffin

Title:  Where We Belong

Author:  Emily Giffin

Publish Date:  July 24, 2012

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Website: N/A

Imprint: N/A

My Source:  Purchased at Target

My rating: 4 Stars

The author of five blockbuster novels, Emily Giffin, delivers an unforgettable story of two women, the families that make them who they are, and the longing, loyalty and love that binds them together.

Marian Caldwell is a thirty-six year old television producer, living her dream in New York City. With a fulfilling career and satisfying relationship, she has convinced everyone, including herself, that her life is just as she wants it to be. But one night, Marian answers a knock on the door . . . only to find Kirby Rose, an eighteen-year-old girl with a key to a past that Marian thought she had sealed off forever. From the moment Kirby appears on her doorstep, Marian’s perfectly constructed world—and her very identity—will be shaken to its core, resurrecting ghosts and memories of a passionate young love affair that threaten everything that has come to define her.

For the precocious and determined Kirby, the encounter will spur a process of discovery that ushers her across the threshold of adulthood, forcing her to re-evaluate her family and future in a wise and bittersweet light. As the two women embark on a journey to find the one thing missing in their lives, each will come to recognize that where we belong is often where we least expect to find ourselves—a place that we may have willed ourselves to forget, but that the heart remembers forever.  (Goodreads Summary)

My Review:

I have read every book Emily Giffin has written and as I read this one, I came to the conclusion that Emily Giffin’s fiction is my reality. From Baby Proof to this book, Where We Belong, I could have had my name in every book as I have experienced each and every story on some level. Wow! I can’t wait to read what she writes next!

This book is about adoption and the struggles the adoptee goes thru with trying to find where she fits in, the struggles the birth mom goes thru because of the secrets she kept, and even the struggles the families go thru with jealousy, insecurity and even loss. As the mom of three adopted children, this story touched a nerve. (in a good way) I was very worried that this would be another story painting adoption in either a negative light or painting adoption in an overly romanticized light where everyone lives happily ever after with no regrets, or conflict. I was pleasantly surprised with this story, thank you for that.

Leave a comment

Filed under Reviews

Review | One Breath Away by Heather Gudenkauf

Title:  One Breath Away

Author:  Heather Gudenkauf

Publish Date:  June 26, 2012

Publisher: Harlequin MIRA

Website: N/A

Imprint: N/A

My Source:  Purchased at Target

My rating: 4.5 Stars

In her most emotionally charged novel to date, New York Times bestselling author Heather Gudenkauf explores the unspoken events that shape a community, the ties between parents and their children and how the fragile normalcy of our everyday life is so easily shattered.In the midst of a sudden spring snowstorm, an unknown man armed with a gun walks into an elementary school classroom. Outside the school, the town of Broken Branch watches and waits.

Officer Meg Barrett holds the responsibility for the town’s children in her hands. Will Thwaite, reluctantly entrusted with the care of his two grandchildren by the daughter who left home years earlier, stands by helplessly and wonders if he has failed his child again. Trapped in her classroom, Evelyn Oliver watches for an opportunity to rescue the children in her care. And thirteen-year-old Augie Baker, already struggling with the aftermath of a terrible accident that has brought her to Broken Branch, will risk her own safety to protect her little brother.

As tension mounts with each passing minute, the hidden fears and grudges of the small town are revealed as the people of Broken Branch race to uncover the identity of the stranger who holds their children hostage.  (Goodreads Summary)

My Review:

This is the third book by Heather Gudenkauf and she doesn’t disappoint! She is still one of my favorite authors. Her style of telling a story thru the lives of several characters gets better and better with each book I have read. (and I have read them all).

She had me guessing throughout the book and what I especially liked was the fact that she had me guessing up until the end. Good job! Each character tells their part of the ongoing story as it happens. Sometimes you get a flashback, sometimes you get the present. The transition of the story from character to character was very well done. Not only did you know what was going on (a school was taken hostage by a man with a gun) thru the eyes of every character involved, you also got to know what each character was like, who they were.

Leave a comment

Filed under Reviews

Review | Gabriel’s Rapture by Sylvain Reynard

Title: Gabriel’s Rapture

Author: Sylvain Reynard

Publish Date: May 22nd 2012

Publisher: Omnific Publishing

Website: N/A

Imprint: N/A

My Source: Borrowed from a friend

My rating: 3.5 Stars

Professor Gabriel Emerson has embarked on a passionate, yet clandestine affair with his former student, Julia Mitchell.

Sequestered on a romantic holiday in Italy, he tutors her in the sensual delights of the body and the rapture of sex. But when they return, their happiness is threatened by conspiring students, academic politics, and a jealous ex-lover.

When Gabriel is confronted by the university administration, will he be forced to share Dante’s fate? Or will he fight to keep Julia, his Beatrice, forever? (Goodreads Summary)

My Review:

I can honestly say, this continuation of Gabriel and Julia’s story was just as sensual and seductive as the first. It was just as – if not a little more romantic BUT it was frustrating more moments than I wanted. (Pun fully intended!) The author’s style and language is very romantic and made for a very pleasurable reading experience. My only complaint, one of the things I really enjoyed in the first book was Gabriel’s personality. When he was being a jerk I found him irresistible, intriguing but in the second book he seemed to be too much of a gentlemen. (I’m trying to not give too much away) I wished the author described some of Gabriel’s sexual frustration more – it would have made him more relatble

Leave a comment

Filed under Reviews

Review | Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain Reynard

Title: Gabriel’s Inferno

Author: Sylvain Reynard

Publish Date: April 18, 2011

Publisher: Omnific Publishing

Website: N/A

Imprint: N/A

My Source: Borrowed from a friend

My rating: 3.5 Stars

Enigmatic and sexy, Professor Gabriel Emerson is a well respected Dante specialist by day, but by night he devotes himself to an uninhibited life of pleasure. He uses his notorious good looks and sophisticated charm to gratify his every whim, but is secretly tortured by his dark past and consumed by the profound belief that he is beyond all hope of redemption.

When the sweet and innocent Julia Mitchell enrolls as his graduate student, his attraction and mysterious connection to her not only jeopardizes his career, but sends him on a journey in which his past and his present collide.

An intriguing and sinful exploration of seduction, forbidden love and redemption, “Gabriel’s Inferno” is a captivating and wildly passionate tale of one man’s escape from his own personal hell as he tries to earn the impossible…forgiveness and love.

NB: This book was a semi-finalist for Best Romance in the 2011 Goodreads Choice Awards. (Goodreads Summary)

My Review:

This book definitely had the cookie cutter romance elements: rich, brooding/broken guy, young, virginal 20-something girl, a steamy connection between the two, drama and tension etc. But… the writing was something quite different. The author did an amazing job telling this story and transporting the reader – I WANTED to be wherever Gabriel and Julia were. I WANTED to be Julia. This story was not erotic with the “in your face” sex, it was romantic and sensual – it left something to the imagination and I couldn’t put it down.

Leave a comment

Filed under Reviews