The reason why I love Mondays -- Mailbox Monday hosted this month by Chick Loves Lit. Below are the following advance review copies that I received this week:
1) Hollywood Savage by Kristin McCloy. Publisher's Summary. Meet me at five," the voice said on the answering machine. Four ordinary words yet, when heard by the wrong person, enough to change the course of a marriage. Marooned in Hollywood while writing a screenplay based on his latest bestselling novel, Miles King records in his journals his escalating conviction that his glamorous wife, a New York-based journalist named Maggie, is having an affair with Miles's favorite student.
Amidst the sun-buffed egos and the longing for connection and fame he encounters at every cocktail party and no-name bar in Hollywood, Miles finds unexpected comfort in an affair of his own with Lucy, a young mother whose open, eager mind sparks an irresistible passion in him. A potent brew of lust, guilt, anger, and betrayal, Miles's journals reveal his constantly shifting emotional state and the perils he must navigate as his fantasies become increasingly hard to distinguish from reality. In Hollywood Savage, acclaimed novelist Kristin McCloy probes one modern man's psychological depths with stunning accuracy, and illuminates the ways men and women try desperately to reveal themselves to one another, while still always keeping a part of their hearts a secret.
2) The Art of Devotion by Samantha Bruce-Benjamin. Publisher's Summary. n the tradition of bestselling authors Ian McEwan and Anne Enright, Samantha Bruce-Benjamin's brilliant and timeless debut unveils the dark side of human nature as four women share the poignant tale of love, obsession, and ultimate betrayal that binds them forever. Have we all not wished to keep forever the one person we love the most? The secluded beaches of a sun-drenched Mediterranean island are the perfect playground for young Sebastian and Adora. Emotionally adrift from their mother, Adora shelters her sensitive older brother from the cruelties of the world. Sophie does not question her children's intense need for one another until it's too late. Her beloved son's affections belong to Adora, and when he drowns in the sea, she has no one else to blame.
Still heartbroken years later, Adora fills her emptiness with Genevieve, the precocious young daughter of her husband's business associate and his jealous wife, Miranda. Thrilled to be invited into the beautiful and enigmatic Adora's world, the child idolizes her during their summers together. Yet, as the years progress, Genevieve begins to suspect their charmed existence is nothing more than a carefully crafted illusion. Soon, she too is ensnared in a web of lies. Stunningly told in the tragic voices of four women whose lives are fatefully entangled, The Art of Devotion is evocative and haunting, a story of deceit, jealousy, and the heartbreaking reality of love's true power.
3) Sea Escape by Lynne Griffin. Publisher's Summary. Acclaimed novelist and nationally recognized family expert Lynne Griffin returns with Sea Escape—an emotional, beautifully imagined story inspired by the author's family letters about the ties that bind mothers and daughters.
Laura Martinez is wedged in the middle place, grappling with her busy life as a nurse, wife, and devoted mom to her two young children when her estranged mother, Helen, suffers a devastating stroke. In a desperate attempt to lure her mother into choosing life, Laura goes to Sea Escape, the pristine beach home that Helen took refuge in after the death of her beloved husband, Joseph. There, Laura hunts for the legendary love letters her father wrote to her mother when he served as a reporter for the Associated Press during wartime Vietnam.
Believing the beauty and sway of her father's words will have the power to heal, Laura reads the letters bedside to her mother, a woman who once spoke the language of fabric—of Peony Sky in Jade and Paradise Garden Sage—but who can't or won't speak to her now. As Laura delves deeper into her tangled family history, she becomes increasingly determined to save her mother. As each letter reveals a patchwork detail of her parents' marriage, she discovers a common thread: a secret that mother and daughter unknowingly share.
Weaving back and forth from Laura's story to her mother's, beginning in the idyllic 1950s with Helen's love affair with Joseph through the tumultuous Vietnam War period on to the present, Sea Escape takes a gratifying look at what women face in their everyday lives—the balancing act of raising capable and happy children and being accomplished and steadfast wives while still being gracious and good daughters. It is a story that opens the door to family secrets so gripping, you won't be able to put this book down until each is revealed.
Thanks to Simon and Schuster!
4) Ah-Choo by Jennifer Ackerman. Publisher's Summary. Some colds are like mice, timid and annoying; others like dragons, accompanied by body aches and deep misery. In AH-CHOO!, Jennifer Ackerman explains what, exactly, a cold is, how it works, and whether it's really possible to "fight one off." Scientists call this the Golden Age of the Common Cold because Americans suffer up to a billion colds each year, resulting in 40 million days of missed work and school and 100 million doctor visits. They've also learned over the past decade much more about what cold viruses are, what they do to the human body, and how symptoms can be addressed. In this ode to the odious cold, Ackerman sifts through the chatter about treatments-what works, what doesn't, and what can't hurt. She dispels myths, such as susceptibility to colds reflects a weakened immune system. And she tracks current research, including work at the University of Virginia at Charlottesville, a world-renowned center of cold research studies, where the search for a cure continues.
Thanks to to Hachette Book Group!
5) The Health Farm Murders by Merryll Manning. Amazon Product Description. A mystery thriller, set against the spectacular scenic backdrop of an imaginary health farm in the small mountain township of Blackheath in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, west of Sydney, Australia, this is the second suspense novel featuring Sergeant Merryll "Merry" Manning of the Miami Police Department. Sergeant Manning debuted in "Merryll Manning: Trapped on Mystery Island" in 2008. Although the characters are entirely fictitious, the plot itself was adapted from several factual incidents that occurred in Mexico, Chile, Peru and other mountainous areas of South America. The geographical details relating to Blackheath and Govett's Leap are accurate in every detail, although the "atmosphere" attributed to the town is purely imaginary. The health ideas touted in the book, however, are based on the advice of several highly respected nutritionists, including Mary C. Hogle and C.E. Clinkard.
I'm a reader/commuter in the DC Metro Area. My daily commute to work provides me with ample time to do what I love most: read! Whether its chick lit, literature, memoirs or other non fiction you can always find me with a book.
Review requests may be sent to dcmetroreader(at)gmail(dot)com.
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