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Friendships flourish at 'Ten Beach Road’

Totally different Southern adventures with Mother Nature can be found in Wendy Wax’s fun novel, “Ten Beach Road.” After losing all their savings in a Ponzi scheme, housewife Madeline, television maven Avery and matchmaker-to-the-stars Nikki are...

'Hotel No Tell' an entertaining summer read

It’s always a hot time in the city when you hang out with the brilliant and sassy Zephyr Zuckerman, but this summer promises to be a little more exciting than most. Zephyr finally has landed her big break in her fledgling career as a detective for...

Magic swirls in Robert Masello's 'Medusa Amulet’

David Franco is a man on a mission. In Robert Masello's riveting "The Medusa Amulet," the intelligent young scholar has cut a Faustian-like deal with a mysterious woman. If he succeeds in finding an ancient amulet from somewhere in Europe and...

Hiaasen's 'Star Island' coming out in paperback

“Star Island” is about as classic Carl Hiaasen as it gets. Which is the proverbial double-edged sword. The negative: It doesn’t deviate much from the usual Hiaasen formula. The positive: It doesn’t deviate much from the usual Hiaasen formula. If you...

'Spies of the Balkans' now out in paperback

Alan Furst’s books transcend the spy genre. Furst writes masterfully crafted atmospheric tales, which mainly take place in Europe just before and during World War II. His 11th novel, “Spies of the Balkans,” now out in paperback, is one of his best...

Sassy 'Friendship Fix’ filled with good advice

When Bette Midler sang about having friends, the women in the house would nod their heads in agreement. Friends are an important aspect of any woman’s life. But what do you do when your friendships begin to lose a bit of their magic, or you suddenly...

Author Lauren Kate continues 'Fallen' series

Fans of teen love stories have something to look forward to as Lauren Kate's third book in her "Fallen" series, "Passion," hits shelves, following "Fallen" and "Torment." And for readers who still need to catch up, "Torment" comes out in paperback...

'The Rich and The Dead’ a buffet of suspense

“The Rich and The Dead” is a collection of short stories edited by Nelson DeMille. How in the world could I resist? And, as it turned out, this compendium from the Mystery Writers of America was worth every page, thanks to the prodigious talents of...

Second chances at heart of 'Slow Dancing on Price's Pier’

Set in Newport, R.I., “Slow Dancing on Price's Pier” by Lisa Dale tells the story of a young woman named Thea Celik and her tumultuous relationship with the two handsome Sorensen brothers, Jonathan and Garret, and how a hasty decision she made years...

'Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott' a blend of fact, fiction

What little girl hasn’t read Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel “Little Women” and wondered if she would make a good sensible “Jo”, a domesticated “Meg” or flighty romantic “Amy”? Or what fan of Alcott’s writing and independent spirit didn’t give...

Daughters search for truth in 'Silver Boat'

Their grandmother always thought their dad was a useless man, living on the dreams of something unattainable. But he always swore he would prove the truth to her, and left for Ireland to do so. Now, years later, his three daughters, Dar, Delia and...

'Fallen Angel' a mystery heavy on atmosphere

August in Europe can feel downright unpleasant. Most of the continent seems to be on vacation (crowds and traffic jams, anyone?), and there are tons of foreign tourists roaming the cities. Plus it's usually blazing hot. Rome, with its gazillion...

Woman shares cancer battle in 'Foremost Good Fortune’

Raising a small family is stressful in the best of times. But imagine how difficult it would be moving your two small children to an entirely different continent such as the austere and somewhat forbidding country of China. In her book, “The...

Authors examine 'Gone With the Wind,' life of Margaret Mitchell

One of my mother’s favorite books and movies is “Gone With the Wind.” So when I heard this year marked the 75th anniversary of the release of “Gone With the Wind,” Margaret Mitchell’s classic novel of the Civil War and its aftermath, I knew there...

'Girl Who Fell From the Sky' a beautiful debut novel

It’s difficult to imagine enjoying a story about family violence, especially involving the deaths of small children, and at the hands of their own mother. It’s even more disturbing to discover the story is based on a true event. Yet in "The Girl Who...

'The Reading Promise’ bonds father, daughter

For Alice Ozma, having her dad, a single father who was also an elementary school librarian, read to her at night was one constant routine she treasured, especially after her parents divorced. When she was in the fourth grade, Alice and her dad...

'Troubled Man' filled with stunning plot twists

I’m gonna miss Kurt Wallander. The brilliant yet troubled Swedish detective is making his last appearance — at least in book form — in “The Troubled Man,” which has recently hit U.S. bookstores. Swedish author Henning Mankell is wrapping up his best...

'Cleaning Nabokov's House' quirky fun

Sometimes, when a midlife crisis unexpectedly socks you in the eye, all you can do is come back up swinging. Barb Barrett is approaching 40 when her relatively safe, secure life is turned upside down. Her husband is divorcing her and he is taking...

'Found Wanting' wants only for a better last line

Robert Goddard’s “Found Wanting” was a compelling read from the first few pages. English civil servant Richard Eusden is intercepted on his way to work by his ex-wife, Gemma. It’s about Marty — her second ex-husband and Richard’s former best friend...

'Waltons' actress shares 'Lessons from the Mountain'

Actress Mary McDonough is familiar to most people in her role as the red-headed middle daughter Erin on “The Waltons.” Cast to perform in the original television movie, “The Homecoming,” McDonough was kept on with the cast of children for the show...

King's 'Full Dark, No Stars' coming out in paperback

For readers who were unwilling to fork over the dough for the hardcover of Stephen King's "Full Dark, No Stars," now's your chance to pick up the paperback, hitting shelves this week. “Full Dark, No Stars” is an anthology of four novellas that are...

Ashley Judd candid in 'All That Is Bitter & Sweet’

Actress Ashley Judd mixes autobiography with advocacy in "All That Is Bitter & Sweet," a revealing, inspiring and somewhat controversial memoir. Judd, youngest daughter and sister of country singers Naomi and Wynonna Judd, has had an impressive...