A novel based on the dazzling story of one of Hollywood’s most celebrated Hispanic actresses and her daughter’s search for closure.
Estelita Rodriguez is just nine years old when she begins singing in Havana, Cuba clubs. It is 1936 and her life will never be the same.
During the Cuban Revolution in 1933, her father lost everything and left them to join Batista. The family is now living in poverty, but Estelita’s mother sees how talented her daughter is and moves her to America.
Here she will sing at the Copacabana, meeting famous men and getting offers to go to Hollywood. With her mother by her side and her daughter, Nina, they get caught up in the craziness that is the entertainment business.
But things aren’t as rosy as they would seem. She has the worst taste in men and has her heart broken many times.
Told to the author by Nina. When Nina’s mother dies, she has a lot of questions. The story is told in letters written from Mother to Daughter and Daughter to Mother.
What she finds will tell a story of the sacrifices, the humiliation, the ugly side of not only Hollywood, but the ugliness of Cuba and the rebels who kept them hostage and did unspeakable things to them.
There is no bond stronger than the one between mothers and daughters. This was a beautifully told account and I cried and laughed and was just in awe of the strength of these women.
This is a story that hurts. There is no attempt to make it into a fairy tale. And that raw emotion is what made my heart ache for these women. There was no attempt to ‘pretty’ this up. It was honest and I loved it.
Set in Ellington, Massachusetts, this ninth book in the series is in my opinion the best one yet.
Who would have thought that a cozy mystery based on garage sales would have so much intrigue and danger?
Sarah Winston is our MC and she is a garage sale organizer. She is really good at her job and her business is going well. But now a new competitor is in town and seems to be sabotaging Sarah’s work and reputation.
Busy pricing and organizing a sale for Alice Krandle, a crotchety old lady who has a soft center while at the same time planning her own anniversary sale in the town common.
But all of that has to take a backseat when her friend, Stella, is kidnapped from her apartment. Sarah begins receiving phone calls from a creepy man/woman telling her she can’t go to the police or her boyfriend, Seth, or even Mike, upstairs whose family is in a mob type business, but he is also her friend.
This was like a scavenger hunt, with the crazy person having her run all over town doing things and putting herself in danger. She does secretly call in reinforcements, including Harriet, her friend and former FBI agent.
I think I was suspicious of everyone in her circle except for the old mean man. He was just an old mean man to me. But at one time I was sure it was Seth. Was it? You will have to find out!
Sarah is such a good character. I can’t wait to see what trouble she gets up to next.
A novel of survival, love, loss, triumph—and the sisters who changed fashion forever
Abandoned at a convent at a young age, Antoinette and Gabrielle Chanel are kept on a tight leash. While they are good girls all day, at night they sneak out their hidden little novellas and read about fashion and cut out styles and clothes they want.
They dream of making something of themselves. Finally of age to leave they do what they must to succeed. Society may never accept them, but they will be wearing the Chanel label forever!
This was a very interesting book. Part fact part fiction. I have recently read another book about CoCo and found this one to be more well rounded and giving us a look at all the Chanel sisters and what drove them to become a success. These were some brave and admirable ladies whose legacy continues strong today!
The Net Force Thriller Series is created by Tom Clancy and Steve Pieczenik and written by Jerome Preisler.
As the world experiences more and more terrorist attacks, the place to be is in cyber-security! With the President giving us an entire agency just for those terrorist acts that you can’t see and Net Force is more than up for the challenge.
This time we are at the edge of the Carpathian Mountains. Where an evil genius has built a seemingly impenetrable fortress from which to oversee his evil plans. Only this time he will be using cyber-space to destroy a lot of lives. Because he is also a next level hacker. With no morals at all.
Just as the team is getting close to the compound, back at base camp, the master of hacking has either hacked our weapons and turned them against us, or we have a traitor in our midst. Because all of a sudden our buildings are being blown up by our own equipment!
And as we all expected, Russia is involved. Hoping to cripple the United States by taking control of the entire internet and do more than steal our credit card numbers. They want to use the internet to pretty much nuke us. And make it look as if we did it ourselves.
If you haven’t read any of the series of books, you should. There is no gentle introduction to the story. No. It is a non-stop, heart -pounding, edge of your seat ride until the last page. I so did not want this to be over. I kept trying to turn another page, but no.
NetGalley/ Harlequin/ Hanover Square December 01, 2020
The year is 2008 and Kennedy Wynn is finally being released from prison. Maybe now she can find out if she is really guilty or not.
It’s the summer of 1993 and the Wynn twins, Kennedy and Carter are doing what every teen does and seeing just how much they can get away with. They don’t worry about money, they have plenty and are well known in their Richmond neighborhood.
But one night of partying leads to one friend dead and another accused but not remembering anything that happened.
This was a really slow burn for the longest time. When it finally all came together things heated up nicely and the ending was satisfying.
There are a lot of hard to read portions. But in the end I was glad I stuck with it!
NetGalley/ November 10th, 2020 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Writing as Mina Hardy, New York Times bestselling author Megan Hart delivers a thrilling new psychological suspense for fans of The Woman in the Window and When the Lights Go Out.
Diana Sparrow was in a car accident five months ago that left her broken and missing quite a bit of her memory. She’s beginning to have nightmares that don’t make sense about that night. Nightmares that are so real they make her doubt everything she is told.
The official story is she hit a deer and totaled her car. She is lucky to be alive. They say she has anesthesia amnesia. Maybe her memory will return and maybe it won’t.
She has so many questions. Why is her best friend, Val, ignoring her? Everyone acts like they know something she doesn’t. And they do. Even her husband and his mother.
But Diana is not believing any of it. As fragments of her memory return, she also finds that everyone is lying to her. And she also finds out she isn’t a very nice person.
But then not one of them is. Harriet, the mother in law was terrifying to me. You could see crazy written all over her but I had no idea how this would end. WHAT????
NetGalley/ November 10th, 2020 by Crooked Lane Books
This book was originally published many years ago. It is an interesting book about Catherine the first, the second wife of Peter the Great. Set in Russia in the 1700s.
This is not about Catherine the Great. This Tsarina came from the slums and lived with all of the horrible conditions in that time period. Violence, Immorality, and a lot of dirt! And dirty dealings. While this is a fictionalized account, much is true.
I love a historical fiction book that teaches me something. I learned a lot about Moscow, St. Petersburg and the not so likeable people in the court.
It’s 1972 and John is determined to finish a table for his wife Joan. He has zero experience in building tables but he swears he can finish it before Thanksgiving.
While he is doing that Joan is re-discovering her mother’s recipes. Creating the most delicious things to go on that table. But then cancer strikes and everything is up in the air.
In 2012, Lauren Mabrey discovers she is having a baby. Everyone at Glory’s Place is helping out. The house needs to be furnished and a trip to a local builder nets them a handmade table with a hidden drawer full of recipes and notes about them and what was going on at the time.
Lauren begins to try out the recipes and in no time has become a cook!
Told in two different times by two different women, this one had me crying! I had no idea this ending was coming and it was so beautiful!
Very Well Done!
NetGalley/ October 6th, 2020 by St. Martin’s Press
TheCertifiablyTRUERavingsOfASectionedPhilosopher: Don't be afraid to think you might be a little 'crazy'. Who isn't? Check out some of my visualized poems here: https://www.instagram.com/maxismaddened/