This is a wonderful story of survival, strength, and finding friendship in the most unlikely places. Abused as a child, rejected as an adult, Tucker has hardened her heart to all outsiders. Then Ella moves in next door. The bond they form becomes the strong thread that keeps them both from falling apart when the unbelievable and unbearable happens.
I was so touched by this story and all the characters – Tucker, Ella, and April particularly. What these three suffer through as parents, grandparents, friends, is heartbreaking. But their love and genuine caring for one another gives them the strength to overcome and brings them all even closer.
I listened to the audible version and the narration was some of the best I’ve heard. So very well done. All of the accents, personalities, both male and female, were all absolutely wonderful. I would read/listen to anything by either this author or this narrator.
A very powerful and moving story. Highly recommended. Can’t wait to read more in this series.
This is a close look at an Irish immigrant family living in New York. It begins in the 1940s and focuses mainly on the daughter in the family. At a young age, she takes on the responsibility of caretaker of her alcoholic, dysfunctional parents and, though she tries to make a better life for herself, she spends most of her life taking care of others. She works as a nurse, and ends up as her husbands primary caretaker when his health deteriorates.
While I felt the story was overly long and dragged in some places, it was interesting in the way it was told, from all three perspectives of the wife, the husband, and their son. Their reflections and actions gave great glimpses in to the character and the emotional life of each one as they faced life struggles.
There were also a lot of interesting social references that brought to life each time period from the 40s through the 2000s. It was definitely an interesting read.
I thought this was going to be a sweet Christian romance. Well, it is that, and so much more. This story grabs you from the very beginning as newlyweds Grace and Monty are headed out west. Traveling on their own, they find themselves in trouble when they are caught up in a terrible rainstorm out on the plains. <br><br>A very pregnant Grace must watch helplessly as all of her worldly possessions, including her beloved husband are swept up into the raging waters. Rescued and brought in to town to recuperate, Grace is distraught. Believing her husband to be dead, she finds a job in town and works to support herself and her young son. <br><br>I can’t say much more without revealing too much of the story, but this is a riveting tale, full of intrigue and many plot twists that keep you eagerly anticipating the next page. I couldn’t put it down. Wonderful characters and great storytelling. I highly recommend.
A magical story about a young women who tends her family’s farm and, in particular, the maze garden at the center of the property. Visitors come from all over to visit the maze garden and experience its mystical, healing properties.
Though friendly with the visitors to the farm, Olivia is forced to keep her distance from them, just as she was forced to end her relationship with the boy next door many years earlier. Now that boy is a grown man, he’s back in town, and he wants to see Olivia. But can they make their relationship work when Olivia’s terrible secret is revealed?
This story was so different than anything I’ve read and so interesting. I loved all the descriptions of the flowers and the gardens. I could almost picture myself standing in the midst of them. Wonderfully written, multi-layered characters and beautifully described, picturesque landscapes made this story a joy to read.
Explores the complexities of relationships, and how we sometimes can make things much more difficult by keeping ourselves (and our emotions) locked away. I liked this story very much and look forward to reading more by this author.
I love reading books about books, and this little gem does not disappoint. Collins is an engaging author whose love of books, at the very least, matches my own. As he described sorting through towering piles of dusty old books, I felt myself nestled in the corner next to him, searching for my own treasures. Full of envy, I yearned for this to be true.
I found myself jotting down notes for many of the books he references here, hoping I might one day have the chance to read some of them myself. Mr. Collins takes the reader on a wonderful adventure in this tiny Welsh town of book lovers called Hay-On-Wye, or “Town of Books”. The town is full of character and characters, both of which are wonderfully appealing. I must make it a point to visit there one day.
Though some readers may find this book a bit boring (there’s not much action), if you are a true lover of books in all their many forms, this is definitely one for you. I can’t recall another book about books that I have enjoyed as much as this one. It is definitely going on my Favorites shelf to be read again and again.
A great one to start off my year of reading with.
I previously included a brief review of this one in my “Five Great Reads for Middle Grade Readers” but here is a more thorough review.
From the first time Mary sees the boy floating up above the trees at her cousin’s birthday party, she is awestruck. Of course, it’s a strange occurrence, and while the adults and press are trying to explain it all away, Mary is set on finding out more about the boy.
When her younger brother begins floating around the house, Mary is really shaken and becomes even more determined to find answers. The second time she crosses paths with the floating boy, a bond begins between them. Together, they try to solve the mystery of the floating children.
When her brother is kidnapped by an evil scientist, Mary and her floating friends rush to the rescue. What they discover is the answer to all their questions, and a resolution to the mystery.
This is a great sci-fi/adventure story, written for young adults or more mature middle school readers. However, as an older adult, I thoroughly enjoyed the story. It’s fast paced and a believable, but extraordinary tale with memorable characters.
This such a sweet and sexy story. And funny! Jillian’s thoughts and observations had me laughing out loud. Evan is such a sweetheart, and I tend to like my men a little on the geeky side, so I fell in love with him right away. The story is told entirely from Jillian’s point of view, including all her little talks with herself, and many thoughts regarding Evan.
This is a lighthearted story with a big heart at it’s core. The characters are clumsy, funny, awkward, delightful, sexy…just like real life. I truly enjoyed this story and can’t wait for the next in the series.
The stories in this collection all take place in the same geographical area, each one giving us a brief look at some of the people who lived there during different periods of time. The stories, often told with great insight, wonderful characters, and witty humor, are such fun to read. Each one is more delightful than the one before.
My favorite, by far, is the final tale, a continuing story of Jack, THE Jack, of Jack and the Beanstalk. This story is so funny, and so well constructed. I laughed out loud more than once. The entire book was great fun to read and a welcome change to the type of books I usually read. If you like stories that tickle the funny bone, are witty and well-crafted, then this one is for you.