Review of “The Sun Sister” by Lucinda Riley

Thanks to #NetGalley and #Atriabooks for the opportunity to read and review this book #TheSunSister by Lucinda Riley
This is book 6 of the "Seven Sisters" series. I have read the previous five and couldn't wait to read this one.
Electra is the youngest of Pa Salt's adopted daughters. She was never happy in school, had a wild temper and asked to go to Paris at age 16. While working there as a waitress, she was discovered by the fashion industry and became a super model instantly.  He 6 foot tall, bold features made her a perfect model. But as her career flourished,  she fell into the wild world of drugs, alcohol and promiscuity.  She was out of control until a woman showed up claiming to be her grandmother.  When her assistant Miriam finds her almost overdosed one morning, Electra decides to try rehab. Her grandmother finally tells the story of her past, and we are taken to the English occupation of Kenya, and the posh estates of Manhattan.  I highly recommend this tremendous book.

Review of “The Forgotten Letters of Esther Durrant” by Kayte Nunn

Thanks to #netgalley, and #HarperCollins and #WilliamMorrow for the opportunity to read and review this lovely story #TheForgottenLettersofEstherDurrant
This story is set in two eras, It’s 1951 and Esther is suffering from depression and her husband takes her to an isolated island and leaves her (against her will) under the care of a psychiatrist who runs a clinic for shell shocked soldiers.
Fast forward to 2018 and we find Rachel, a research scientist leaving the south Pacific for a new position on the isolated islands off the coast of England. She never stays in one place for long, she isn’t the type to open her heart to anyone. She’s happy recording observations of sea life.
The 2 stories subtly intertwine when Rachel finds letters that were never sent. I enjoyed this book and definitely recommend.

Review of “The Lost and Found Bookshop ” by Susan Wiggs

Thank you #WilliamMorrow #HarperCollins and #Edelweiss for the opportunity to read and review #TheLostandFoundBookshop

Pub date 7/7/2020
I love books about books and this one didn’t disappoint. Natalie suffers loss and as she struggles to find her way, she ends up back at the bookshops where she grew up. Her grandfather is not well, and the bookshop is in danger of bankruptcy. Her mother made arrangements for a man to make repairs that are desperately needed, and Peach proves to be a life saver. He is able to fix so much. So how to save the bookshop, and how to learn to love again? The answers provide a beautiful story. I recommend this book.

Review of “The Heirloom Garden” by Violet Shipman

Thanks to #netgalley and #Harlequin for the opportunity to read and review this book #TheHeirloomGarden by Violet Shipman
Pub date 4/28/2020
I love gardening and I love flowers. This story spoke to my heart with the descriptions of the flowers and the stories of the flowers. This book tells the story of Iris, a botanist in the 1940s, and Abby, an engineer in the early 2000s. Abby and her family rent a sound on Lake Michigan’s shore from Iris, a woman who hasn’t left her property in 40 plus years.
Both women’s husbands served in combat, Iris’s husband never came home; Abby’s husband came home with PTSD.
Their stories, their lives begin to intertwine as Lily, Abby’s daughter breaks a little of Iris’s shell.
I loved the descriptions the author wrote about the meanings of flowers, and about propagation and care of them
If you love gardens, you will enjoy this lovely story. I definitely recommend

Review of “The Florios of Sicily” by Stefania Auci

Thanks to #netgalley and #HarperCollins for the opportunity to read and review this book #TheFloriosofSicily by Stefania Auci

Pub date 4/21/2020
What a marvelous story of this family who was an integral part of the history of Sicily . The book spans a couple centuries and tells of the rise of the Florios from a poor village in Calabria to the influential and powerful family they established in Palermo. You may not like the personality of Paolo, Vincenzo or Ignazio, but one can’t deny their ability to bring their vision for their company to fruition. Guilia will capture your heart though and her love for Vincenzo is what holds the thread of the story together. There is a lot of descriptions of the city, the company and the history of Sicily in the book. I enjoyed learning about this fascinating island and the struggles the people endured with various countries and families ruling over it. I highly recommend this book

Review of “The Book of Lost Friends” by Lisa Wingate

Thanks to #netgalley,  #RandomHousePublishing, and #BallantineBooks for the opportunity to read and review this fantastic book #TheBookofLostFriends by #LisaWingate 
Publication 4/7/2020
This book will touch your heart deeply. The year is 1875 and Hannie Gossett is dreaming of the time before the war when her mother, brothers and sisters are all torn from her and sold on the way to Texas. Fast forward to 1987 when Bennie Silva arrives in a little Louisiana town to start her job teaching at a poor high school.
These two story lines are seamlessly woven together with beautifully written prose. In between each chapter is an ad place in the paper, of someone who is searching for their mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters.
You will be changed as Hannie helps the her half sisters search for their father in wild Texas, and Bennie sees the promise in the students who have been put down and made to feel worthless. Excellent book.

Review of “The Ancestor” by Danielle Trussoni

Thank you #HarperCollinsPublisher, #WilliamMorrow and #netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book #TheAncestor by Danielle Trussoni. Publication 4/7/2020
Get ready to go on an adventure to the Alps of northern Italy, where Bert Monte goes to discover her heritage.
Berte is living in Milton and struggling with depression after her latest miscarriage. Her marriage is also crumbling, when she receives a letter from a lawyer in Torino, Italy telling her she is the heir to the Montebianco title and fortune.
She travels to Torino and is flown to the castle high in the cold cold Alps. The story is filled with strange creatures and fantastical stories. I recommend to anyone who enjoys out of the ordinary tales

Review of “The First Emma” by Camille de Maio

Thanks to #netgalley and #wyattmackenziepublishing for the opportunity to read and review #thefirstemma.
Pub date 5/5/2020
The First Emma is the beautifully written story of Emma Koelher, widow of Otto Koehler, founder of San Antonio Brewing Association/ Pearl Brewing company. The book is based on true events.
Emma is the long suffering wife of Otto, who has founded a brewing empire in the early 1900’s and also has begun affairs with two other Emma’s, immigrants from Germany. They come to care for the first Emma who is disabled from an auto accident.
Fast forward to 1943, Emma places an ad in the paper for an assistant. Mabel has lost her mother, he brothers are serving in the war and her father is an alcoholic living on bv the street. She leaves Baltimore when Emma gives her the job.
Emma is determined to tell the story of her life and Mabel takes dictation and writes the story. Emma has no children so she is determined to leave a legacy to her extended family.
I was captured by this book based on a real woman who oversees and builds a vast business in a time that women weren’t on the boards of companies. Her strength and fortitude are an inspiration to any one who wins over adversity. I highly recommend

Review of “The Queen of Paris” by Paula Binnings Ewen

Thanks to #BlackstonePublishing and #netgalley for the opportunity to read and review #thequeenofparis
Pub. Date 4/7/2020
This book tells the story of Coco Chanel and her life during the Nazi occupation of Paris. The author uses flashbacks to fill in the details of her early life. Basically the book posits that Coco worked for the Nazis during the war. She lived in the Ritz hotel, where all the high ranking Nazis stayed. Her partner in her Chanel No. 5 perfume stole the recipe for her signature scent and we follow along as Coco fights to keep control of her creation. Everything she does is aimed at saving what rightly belonged to her. A well written book that I highly recommend.

Review of “The Lions of Fifth Avenue “by Fiona Davis

Thanks to #edelweiss and #dutton for the opportunity to read and review the ARC of this book.
I have enjoyed every book written by Fiona Davis and this was no exception. I read it in one day.
The story follows two timelines, 1913 when Laura Lyons wants to be one a journalist, while being married with two children. Her husband is superintendent of the NYPL, and they live in the seven room apartment in the building. As she tries to create her own identity, she struggles as women did to be accepted in the working world. Fast forward to 1993 , Sadie Donovan is curator of the Berg collection at the library. She is Laura’s granddaughter, but because of a a scandal in her family’s past, she doesn’t tell her supervisor. When rare books start to disappear, Sadie has to find the thief before her job is in jeopardy.
Another excellent book by the author. Highly recommend