Monday, June 27, 2011

The Wedding Writer

The Wedding Writer by Susan Schneider

My daughter and I were lucky enough to meet Susan Schneider at BEA this year at the author speed dating event.  She has worked as an editor and writer for all the big bridal magazines, so this, her first novel, is about the bridal magazine industry.  We really enjoyed talking to her, especially since she knows Randy from Say Yes to the Dress, one of our favorite shows and even said she would hook us up when we are ready to shop for Steph's wedding gown (if she can ever get her boyfriend to propose that is!!)  The book wasn't coming out until June 6th, so Susan promised she would send it out to us, so we frantically checked the mail every day until it came!  I'm a faster reader, so I got to read it first (sorry about that baby girl!)

The Wedding Writer is about a bridal magazine "Your Wedding" and what happens when the editor-in-chief, Grace Ralston, is fired and replaced by the protege she took under her wing, Lucky Quinn.  Unfortunately, things do not go smoothly for anyone involved, as Grace is now considered too old and not fresh enough anymore and Lucky is stuck with staff members, Felice and Sara, who are still fiercely loyal to Grace. It is told in alternating chapters about each of the four women, so you get a different perspective on the events that are happening. 

I really loved this book and even though some of the characters are not entirely likeable, she still manages to make you feel sorry for them when things are not working out exactly as they would like them to.  I also discovered that I would NEVER want to work in the magazine industry (except for the goodies closet where they keep all the freebies and gifts from the advertisers - would love to get into that!).  I am now also convinced that my future daughter-in-law cannot get married in anything other than Christian Louboutin shoes, or at least a pair of knock-offs! Thanks for that, Susan!!!

So if you're looking for a fun read, this is it!!!


Friday, June 10, 2011

A Turn in the Road

By Debbie Macomber

I love Debbie Macomber - she tells just really nice stories.   You always know what you're going to get when you read one of her books.

"A Turn in the Road" is about a road trip that Bethanne Hamlin, her daughter, Annie, and her ex-mother-in-law, Ruth,  take from Seattle to Florida for Ruth's 50th high school reunion.  Bethanne needs the time to make a decision about getting back together with her ex-husband, now that his second marriage has failed, Annie is on the rebound from her boyfriend and Ruth is looking to reconcile with her high school sweetheart.
This trip takes them all places they were not expecting.

Like all of Debbie's books, this is full of likeable characters and enough of a plot to keep you interested, without being overwhelming.  Are there a few corny parts?  Yes, but  they just add to the charm of Debbie's writing.  If you're a long time fan, then this won't disappoint and if you've never read anything of hers before, this is a nice introduction to her work.  She does have some serials, but this is a stand alone and was totally enjoyable.

I would give "A Turn in the Road" a 4.5/5. 

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Night Circus

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

While at BEA (hope no one is sick of stories of BEA yet.  Got a lot of books there I can't wait to read!), my daughter told me to go stand in line for this book while she stood in another.  This line snaked all the way around the convention center I'm pretty sure and this book was being promoted as "THE NEXT BIG THING!"  I read the back of it while I was standing in line, as I wasn't even sure what book I was standing in line for (this happened a lot - I just go where Stephanie tells me, but only because this was her graduation gift.  Normally she does not have this much control over me.)  It sounded kind of interesting, although not something I would normally pick up, but never being one to miss out, I wanted to read it anyways.  Plus she gave out little chocolate mice candies with the book. Anyone that gives me chocolate is a friend of mine.

The Night Circus is about, obviously a circus that operates at night, but it was created as a venue for a bet between two master magicians, as to whose methods and protege are superior.  The two dueling magicians, Celia and Marco, were entered into this bet as children and trained for this event without their knowledge or consent.  As he starts to work for the circus, Marco knows who his opponent is, but Celia does not.

The story, background and characters in this book are so intricate.  The style of it reminds me of the Harry Potter series, where J. K. Rowling created a completely new world and language as her setting for the books.  Erin Morgenstern has a wonderful imagination and you feel like you are there, as everything is described in such detail, (but not boring, will it never end details) even down to how things smell.

The Night Circus certainly lived up to its hype and I am really glad I decided to give it a try, even though it's not my usual cup of tea.  The release date is 9/13/11 and I'm sure it's going to be a big success.  If there isn't a movie deal from this, I would be very surprised!!!  So look for this in the fall, grab yourself a copy and prepare to be amazed and charmed by The Night Circus!!!

I give this book a 5/5!!!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

How I Planned Your Wedding

How I Planned Your Wedding by Susan Wiggs and Elizabeth Wiggs Maas

My son recently became engaged and so a lot of talk now is centered around "THE WEDDING."  My daughter brought this home from work at the library and thought it would be fun to read.  Now, I am not the mother of the bride, but we are very close.  In fact, she asked me to come along when she picked out her wedding gown, which I was quite honored, as a lot of future mother-in-laws are not included in this event.  It was so much fun, like Say Yes to the Dress (one of our favorite shows), but without Randy. If you don't watch this, you really should.

Anyways, this book was co-written by New York Times bestselling author, Susan Wiggs, and her daughter Elizabeth when Elizabeth became engaged.  They alternate chapters, although the majority of it was written by Elizabeth, who also has a very funny blog,  Susan and Elizabeth are mother and daughter and best friends and Elizabeth has always shared everything with her mom, so of course her wedding was also a joint venture.

Normally a book about wedding planning is more of a how-to manual, but this was written  as a story with wedding details thrown in.  It was a very enjoyable read and I loved hearing about their tight mother-daughter bond!  Even if you are not in the middle of planning "THE WEDDING", you will love this book.