Goodness, I'm tired of sullen, hateful teenaged girls in fiction! We were not all like that, authors! I'm ready for an author to be bold and write a b...moreGoodness, I'm tired of sullen, hateful teenaged girls in fiction! We were not all like that, authors! I'm ready for an author to be bold and write a book about a young girl who gets along with her parents and doesn't try to fit in with the cool crowd. This book is ceratainly decent, but lacks the momentum and sass of Weiner's previous works. The last 30 or so pages deliver a shocking and sad surprise that helps the book end on a melancholy note.(less)
This is Giffin’s fourth book, and I think her best by far. It’s the story of Ellen and Andy, who met during college and have a storybook romance and t...moreThis is Giffin’s fourth book, and I think her best by far. It’s the story of Ellen and Andy, who met during college and have a storybook romance and tight-knit family. But then Ellen’s ex, Leo, comes along with some intriguing professional offers, and Ellen gets confused. That’s about all I can say without giving away the plot! I thought for a while that Ellen would turn out to be another stupid, selfish woman (as so many protagonists seem to be!) but she kept surprising me. I liked this book a lot and read it in about a day and a half.(less)
Frilly. Cute. I thought it was going to get preachy about gay marriage, but never did. It was a quick, light read, and I enjoyed it. That's the best y...moreFrilly. Cute. I thought it was going to get preachy about gay marriage, but never did. It was a quick, light read, and I enjoyed it. That's the best you can say for Wickham/Kinsella!(less)
Decent enough story, though awfully formulaic and utterly predictable. You can tell Nora Roberts has written 170-something books. I don't really like...moreDecent enough story, though awfully formulaic and utterly predictable. You can tell Nora Roberts has written 170-something books. I don't really like romance novels because of the cheese factor and completely unrealistic sex scenes. I'd rather not have to read sex scenes at all, honestly. I doubt I'll read the next three books in the series. I can almost predict what will happen in each one, already knowing what the other three characters are like. Yawn.(less)
My goodness, this book is terrible. It's loaded with bad stereotypes, unreal plot devices and a ridiculous, impossible Cinderella-type ending. This bo...moreMy goodness, this book is terrible. It's loaded with bad stereotypes, unreal plot devices and a ridiculous, impossible Cinderella-type ending. This book is an illustration of everything that's wrong with modern Christian fiction.(less)
I'm glad I read this second book in the Brides Quartet! I enjoyed it much more than the first, probably because I enjoyed the character more. This one...moreI'm glad I read this second book in the Brides Quartet! I enjoyed it much more than the first, probably because I enjoyed the character more. This one is about Emma, the florist for Vows. She's kind-hearted and happy and loves her job very much. When an old friend turns into something more, she's even happier. There's a bit of a silly conflict near the end. I do wish writers could just write about two people falling in love and being happy. Not everyone experiences heartache and a near-breakup at the height of their bliss, but every love story has exactly that. Nora Roberts is an excellent storyteller and could teach a lot of writers how to make better characters, but she does veer into the corny and cheesy from time to time. I'm okay with that. She writes fiction for women, for crying out loud! We love cheese!(less)
I very much wanted to like this book. I enjoyed "The Nanny Diaries" as much as everybody else did, and liked the mo...more**spoiler alert** SPOILERS! Beware!
I very much wanted to like this book. I enjoyed "The Nanny Diaries" as much as everybody else did, and liked the movie, too. It's hard to pinpoint what I didn't like about this book, but I'll try.
1. I don't see what Nan has to do with this. I mean, this book could have, WOULD have been very interesting had the authors told this story with completely new characters. There's no reason for Nan, Grayer and Mr. and Mrs. X to be a part of this story. It's forced. Yes, the first book was one of the most successful in the chick-lit genre, and the movie did a good job of telling its story. Is this follow-up just a desire by the authors to cash in on a franchise? I hope not.
2. The stuff happening at Jarndyce was interesting, and I wanted more of that. The ending was too hurried. We're supposed to believe the school was locked up simply because Mr. X didn't donate money? What? His kids didn't even go to school there! All these other billionaire parents couldn't keep the school afloat? Huh? If there had been more explanation of what was happening at the school and less mess about Nan schlepping that stupid dog all over Manhattan, the story would've taken off.
3. There's an extreme lack of character development. The authors can't expect us to remember characters from a book we read in 2002 when they weren't central enough to the story to BE remembered. And there are too many characters. I spent lots of wasted minutes trying to remind myself who all these people were. I wanted more of Ingrid and Nan's parents and grandmother, and Ryan and even Chassie and Darwin.
4. Finally, the characters are despicable. There's hardly a nice one in the bunch, they're all dysfunctional to a crazy degree, and the heroine is stupid, flighty and a total pushover.
I've read all of McLaughlin/Kraus's books and LOVE them. I never hesitate to read one of their books. Unfortunately, they just failed with this one.(less)
Book three in the Bride Quartet centers around Laurel McBane, baker extraordinaire and the head of Icing at Vows, the wedding cake and dessert arm of...moreBook three in the Bride Quartet centers around Laurel McBane, baker extraordinaire and the head of Icing at Vows, the wedding cake and dessert arm of the full-service wedding company Laurel runs with her three best friends, Mac (photography), Emma (flowers) and Parker (everything else). Book one focused on Mac, book two on Emma, and book four, due out in November 2010, will be about Parker. I'll be sorry to see this series end.
This series is the first I've read of Nora Roberts' work. I know she's written close to 200 books, most of them romance. I think I've avoided romance novels in general, because the image I have of them is the bodice-ripping Harlequin sort. Sure, there's a bit of bosom heaving in Roberts' novels, but things tip much more to the chick lit side than the full-on romance side, and I like that.
Laurel has kept her heart closed off from love, due in large part to the abysmal marriage her parents had and how badly it ended. Instead she's thrown herself into her work and into her friendship with her business co-owners. But there's always been one man, part of her life since they were both children, who she just can't ignore. When things change between them, Laurel has to decide whether she can let go and accept love, or whether she'll stay closed off and never know what might have been.
As with the first two books in the series, it's clear from the start (the end of the previous book, in this case) exactly what will happen in the end, but that doesn't matter. The story getting to that point is fun and entertaining, interesting despite being predictable. Roberts has a way of writing characters that makes them fully formed and real from the earliest pages of her books. She's great at writing humor without getting cheesy, and her descriptions of people and places are focused and consistent. Anyone serious about writing would do well to read a lot of Roberts' books. She has a lot to teach young writers about how how to do it.(less)
Kat, Carla and Elise are all 45-year-old women who have been best friends since childhood. They're reaching middle age...moreAnother win from First Reads! :)
Kat, Carla and Elise are all 45-year-old women who have been best friends since childhood. They're reaching middle age, and in different ways, all their lives get turned upside down. There are some funny scenes and some touching scenes, and there are also a few obvious plot points that are easy to see before they come. I was expecting it to be crass in sexuality and language, and I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it wasn't. I guess this is "grown-up chick lit." Overall, I enjoyed it, and I'm interested in reading more from this author who I hadn't heard of before this book. Discovering new authors to read is one thing I really like about First Reads!(less)