by Susan McBride
I'm kind of in a crunch this week with revisions for LITTLE BLACK DRESS due Friday (as you're reading this!). So I'm going to make this easy on myself by rehashing a book talk segment I did for "Great Day St. Louis" on Valentine's Day.
Since love is in the air this month, I discussed four "romantic reads," all dealing with the topic of home and heart in different ways. Only one, ANGEL'S REST by Emily March, is considered a traditional romance while the other three are novels with romantic elements--THE GIRL WHO CHASED THE MOON by Sarah Addison Allen, THE OTHER LIFE by Ellen Meister, and THE BOYFRIEND OF THE MONTH CLUB by Stiletto Ganger Maria Geraci (yay!).
In ANGEL'S REST, Nic Sullivan is a small-town veterinarian with a broken heart. She's divorced and semi-happily single until she rubs shoulders with hunky Gabe Callahan, a loner escaping past tragedy by hiding out in the mountains. Serious sparks fly between the two, only--sigh--their pasts and the things they don't/can't talk about, keep them apart. It takes a bit of angelic intervention to bring them together.
THE GIRL WHO CHASED THE MOON is Sarah Addison Allen's third book after GARDEN SPELLS and THE SUGAR QUEEN (and her fourth, THE PEACH KEEPER, is out next month). If you haven't read her Southern tales of home and heartache, you should. She writes beautiful prose that sucks you in, and in MOON, she gets us wrapped up in the life of a teenager, Emily Benedict, who goes back to her mother's hometown of Mullaby, NC, to meet her grandfather and find out the dark secret that drove her mom away.
Ellen Meister's THE OTHER LIFE is a tale of two lives, both of them belonging to Quinn Braverman. In one, she's a wife and mother in the Long Island suburbs, awaiting the birth of her second baby and missing her deceased mother. In the other life, she's got a high profile career and a high profile beau, a shock jock like Howard Stern, and, most importantly to Quinn, her mom is still alive and kicking. She can go back and forth to each life through a portal in her basement wall. But once the portal begins to close, she has to make a choice or risk getting caught in a life she might not want after all. (Just optioned by HBO for a TV series!)
In Maria's BOYFRIEND OF THE MONTH CLUB, a cheating boyfriend and a really awful first date lead Grace O'Bryan to forgo the book club and start a "Boyfriend of the Month Club" with her friends. Like most things in life that we start for fun and giggles, this club turns into more than Grace bargained for. She's got her heart in the right place, and she finally finds a man worthy of it, too!
Here's the video in case you want to hear each summary like I'm talking to you right from your computer:
I recently did an informal poll on my Facebook page, asking friends what their favorite romantic books of all-time are, and the top five results:
1. GONE WITH THE WIND
2. PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
3. WUTHERING HEIGHTS
4. THE THORN BIRDS
5. THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE
Do you agree? If not, what's your fave? Inquiring minds want to know! (At least, this one does.) :-)