Monday, March 21, 2016

Paris is Always a Good Idea

Paris Is Always a Good IdeaRosalie Laurent is the proud owner of Luna Luna, a little post-card shop in St. Germain, and if it were up to her, far more people would write cards. Her specialty is producing "wishing cards," but where her own wishes are concerned the quirky graphic artist is far from lucky. Every birthday Rosalie sends a card inscribed with her heart's desire fluttering down from the Eiffel Tower - but none of her wishes has ever been fulfilled.

Then one day when an elderly gentleman trips up in her shop and knocks over a post-card stand, it seems that her wish cards are working after-all. Rosalie finds out that it is Max Marchais, famed and successful author of children's books who's fallen into her life. When he asks her to illustrate his new (and probably last) book, Rosalie is only too glad to accept, and the two - very different - maverick artists become friends.

Rosalie's wishes seem to be coming true at last, until a clumsy American professor stumbles into her store with accusations of plagiarism. Rosalie is hard pressed to know whether love or trouble is blowing through her door these days, but when in doubt, she knows that Paris is Always a Good Idea when one is looking for the truth and finding love.

This book had everything I love in a book - Paris, a grouchy older man, love, and mystery! Knowing this going in I wasn't expecting much because I didn't want to be disappointed.  But it blew me away.  I really enjoyed every second of reading this story.  The man characters were adorable and the grouchy man was endearing.  I would love to see this story continue.  I enjoyed how the chapters went back and forth between the characters and showed events through both perspectives.  I don't see this done very often, but will seek it out more in the future.  At times the mystery felt obvious, but I didn't care.  How they came to the realization was what mattered most.  If you are looking for a book that will read easily and delight, this is for you!  While I don't buy many books, I will be on the lookout for this novel to add to my shelves.

     * I received this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review *

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Only Ever You

Only Ever You: A NovelJill Lassiter’s three-year-old daughter disappears from a playground only to return after 40 frantic minutes, but her mother’s relief is short-lived–there’s a tiny puncture mark on Sophia’s arm. When doctors can find no trace of drugs in her system, Jill accepts she’ll never know what happened, but at least her child is safe.

Except Sophia isn’t. Someone is watching the Lassiter home in an affluent Pennsylvania suburb, infiltrating the family’s personal and professional lives. While Jill struggles to balance building her photography business with parenting high-spirited Sophia, and David is distracted by pressure to make partner at his law firm, both of them are holding on in a marriage that’s already been rocked by loss.

Three months after the incident at the park, Sophia disappears again, but this time Jill and David become the focus of police and media scrutiny and suspicion. Facing every parent’s worst nightmare a second time, Jill discovers that someone doesn’t just want Sophia for her own, she wants to destroy the entire family.

I absolutely flew through the first half of this book.  When I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about how I could be reading it.  It was a solid book from the beginning.  I loved the mystery element coupled with the family dynamic because it made the story multi-layered.  Then I kind of hit a bump.  Some of the events required me to suspend belief because they seemed a little too far fetched.  The mystery seemed so easy and I kind of checked out.  I had felt the book went from a 5 star to a 3 star at that point.  And then...let's just say - keep reading!  The characters were human and easy to relate with.  And I loved the book because it gave me a satisfying ending without everything tied up all neat and perfect.  I ended up giving the book a solid 4 stars and will look for more works by Rebecca Drake in the near future!      

* I received this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review *