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Published: Sourcebooks Landmark - January 13th, 2015
This is a riveting work of historical fiction with more than a little touch of magic. The Amazing Arden is a turn of the century illusionist who finds herself on the run after a spectacular performance of her Halved Man act in the small town of Waterloo, Iowa. When a young policeman, Virgil Holt, encounters her later that night, after having seen her show and after learning that Arden's husband was murdered with the very axe she'd used in her act, he takes her into custody and spends the entire night listening to her story, her attempt to explain her claims of innocence. At the crux of this mesmerizing novel is whether Virgil will believe Arden, an adept storyteller, and let her go free or whether he will disbelieve her and turn her over to higher authorities. Her fate is not revealed until the last pages of the novel, so don't sneak a peek at the ending. Highly recommended. ~ Reviewed by Gail King
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Published: Riverhead Books - January 13th, 2015
At the center of this absorbing thriller is Rachel, the girl on the train, who fantasizes about a couple she observes out the train window as she commutes back and forth to London. It is also the real story of that couple, as well as the story of a person who goes missing. Throughout the novel, I had trouble determining who was a reliable narrator and who wasn't. And I wasn't quite prepared for the ending. I strongly recommend this compelling read. ~ Reviewed by Gail King
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Published: Grove Press - January 6th, 2015
This novel is part mystery, part commentary on love, loss, passion and secrets.
When plastic surgeon Dr. John Taylor is found dead in his hotel room, the initial cause of death is thought to be heart attack. Soon, though, Palo Alto detective Samantha Adams and her team find enough incriminating evidence to suspect foul play. The plot thickens when it is revealed that the respected and admired surgeon left behind not one but three wives.
Told in alternating chapters by the detective and the wives, this novel had me guessing, and second-guessing, whodunit right up to the end. It is a pageturner! ~ Reviewed by Gail King
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Published: Algonquin Books - October 14th, 2014
This delightful novel has romance, suspense and two characters you won't soon forget. When fate throws Eric and Danielle, two unlikely companions, together to wait out Maine's "storm of the century" in a remote cabin without central heat, electricity or indoor plumbing, you know anything can happen. Add to the mix the fact that both are emotionally fragile, and there are the makings of a compelling story. I did put down this book to get some sleep - but barely. This is the perfect novel with which to hunker down in a snowstorm, next to a cozy fire, with a glass of mulled wine. Enjoy! ~ Reviewed by Gail King
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Published: Vintage - September 23rd, 2014
Set against a little known historical event, this novel follows five American Gold Star mothers who travel to France to visit the graves of their soldier-sons in the years after WWI and whose lives are forever changed by their journey. Poignant and memorable. ~ Reviewed by Gail King
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Published: Algonquin Books - December 2nd, 2014
An utterly charming tribute to books, bookstores and booksellers everywhere, this is a story about transformation and second chances, as well. The literary references are simply an added bonus.
After the death of his young wife, A. J. Fikry, quirky owner of Island Books, finds his life in a downward spiral. He’s depressed; he’s drinking too much; he’s alienated almost everyone he knows; and, to top it all off, his most prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. Then, an unexpected package is left in his bookstore, and his life is transformed.
I wistfully turned the last page at 1:00 AM, sorry it had ended but delighted to have read it. Pick it up for a satisfying, irresistible read. ~ Reviewed by Gail King