While I was on vacation, I read several really great books.  You don’t want to miss out on these!

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Karen White has become a favorite author during the last few years. She has written a series about a woman named Melanie who can communicate with ghosts- I’m not really into paranormal stuff but because she’s such a fantastic author these books are page turners! There are four books in all and they are each so good. The final book, Return to Tradd Street just came out this week.

 synopsis:

Melanie is only going through the motions of living since refusing Jack’s marriage proposal. She misses him desperately, but her broken heart is the least of her problems. Despite an insistence that she can raise their child alone, Melanie is completely unprepared for motherhood, and she struggles to complete renovations on her house on Tradd Street before the baby arrives.

When Melanie is roused one night by the sound of a ghostly infant crying, she chooses to ignore it. She simply does not have the energy to deal with one more crisis. That is, until the remains of a newborn buried in an old christening gown are found hidden in the foundation of her house.

As the hauntings on Tradd Street slowly become more violent, Melanie decides to find out what caused the baby’s untimely death, uncovering the love, loss, and betrayal that color the house’s history—and threaten her claim of ownership. But can she seek Jack’s help without risking her heart? For in revealing the secrets of the past, Melanie also awakens the malevolent presence that has tried to keep the truth hidden for decades.…

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Lucinda Riley is another author that I’ve mentioned before. Her novels are also gripping page turners that are easy to read and super entertaining. I have now read all of her novels and eagerly await whatever she writes next. I read The Girl on The Cliff which is a big novel-416 pages!- but I was hooked from page one.

synopsis:

To escape a recent heartbreak in New York, Grania Ryan returns to her family home on the rugged, wind-swept coast of Ireland. Here, on the cliff edge in the middle of a storm, she meets a young girl, Aurora Lisle, who will profoundly change her life.

Despite the warnings Grania receives from her mother to be wary of the Lisle family, Aurora and Grania forge a close friendship. Through a trove of old family letters dating from 1914, Grania begins to learn just how deeply their families’ histories are entwined. The horrors of World War I, the fate of a beautiful foundling child, and the irresistible lure of the ballet give rise to a legacy of heartache that leaves its imprint on each new generation. Ultimately, it will be Aurora whose intuition and spirit may be able to unlock the chains of the past.

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I love a big historical  novel (I’m partial to World War II) that pulls you in and doesn’t let you go. Those are hard to find. The Paris Architect by Charles Belfoure is a fantastic book that swept me away from the first few pages.  Wow, what a concept, what a story! This is not to be missed. Amy Clark from Mom Advice chose it as her first Book Club book! A fantastic choice and a must read.

synopsis: 

Like most gentiles in Nazi-occupied Paris, architect Lucien Bernard has little empathy for the Jews. So when a wealthy industrialist offers him a large sum of money to devise secret hiding places for Jews, Lucien struggles with the choice of risking his life for a cause he doesn’t really believe in. Ultimately he can’t resist the challenge and begins designing expertly concealed hiding spaces—behind a painting, within a column, or inside a drainpipe—detecting possibilities invisible to the average eye. But when one of his clever hiding spaces fails horribly and the immense suffering of Jews becomes incredibly personal, he can no longer deny reality.

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Last but not least is City of Hope by Kate Kerrigan. This is the follow up to Kate’s great novel, Ellis Island. Besides loving books about World War II, I enjoy reading stories of immigrants coming to America and building a life in this wonderful country. Even as a little girl, I was intrigued by this topic. City of Hope was a wonderful novel and one to add to your must-read list! 

synopsis:

It is the 1930s and when her beloved husband, John, suddenly dies, young Ellie Hogan decides to leave Ireland and return to New York. She hopes that the city’s vibrancy will distract her from her grief. But the Depression has rendered the city unrecognizable-gone is the energy and atmosphere of fun that Ellie fell in love with ten years before.

Plunging headfirst into a new life, Ellie pours all her passion and energy into running a home and refuge for the homeless. In return they give her the kind of love, support and friendship she needs to try and overcome her grief. Until, one day, someone she thought she’d never see again steps through her door. It seems that even the Atlantic isn’t big enough to prevent the tragedies of the past from catching up with her.