Black and Blue

Black and Blue Description:

For eighteen years Fran Benedetto kept her secret And hid her bruises And stayed with Bobby because she wanted her son to have a father And because in spite of everything she loved him Then one night when she saw the look on her ten year old son s face Fran finally made a choice and ran for both their lives br br Now she is starting over in a city far from home far from Bobby And in this place she uses a name that isn t hers and cradles her son in her arms and tries to forget For the woman who now calls herself Beth every day is a chance to heal to put together the pieces of her shattered self And every day she waits for Bobby to catch up to her Because Bobby always said he would never let her go And despite the flawlessness of her escape Fran Benedetto is certain of one thing It is only a matter of time

Rating: 3.76 out of 5

Still Life with Bread Crumbs

Still Life with Bread Crumbs Description:

i Still Life with Bread Crumbs i begins with an imagined gunshot and ends with a new tin roof Between the two is a wry and knowing portrait of Rebecca Winter a photographer whose work made her an unlikely heroine for many women Her career is now descendent her bank balance shaky and she has fled the city for the middle of nowhere There she discovers in a tree stand with a roofer named Jim Bates that what she sees through a camera lens is not all there is to life br br Brilliantly written powerfully observed i Still Life with Bread Crumbs i is a deeply moving and often very funny story of unexpected love and a stunningly crafted journey into the life of a woman her heart her mind her days as she discovers that life is a story with many levels a story that is longer and more exciting than she ever imagined

Rating: 3.44 out of 5

One True Thing

One True Thing Description:

Ellen Gulden leaves her life as a successful New York journalist to return home and care for her mother Kate diagnosed with cancer In the short time they have left the relationship between mother and daughter tender awkward and revealing deepens and Ellen is forced to confront painful truths about her adored father After Kate s death Ellen goes from devoted daughter to prime suspect accused of the mercy killing

Rating: 3.62 out of 5

Every Last One

Every Last One Description:

The latest novel from Pulitzer Prize winner Anna Quindlen br br In this breathtaking and beautiful novel the New York Times bestselling author Anna Quindlen creates an unforgettable portrait of a mother a father a family and the explosive violent consequences of what seem like inconsequential actions br br Mary Beth Latham has built her life around her family around caring for her three teenage children and preserving the rituals of their daily life When one of her sons becomes depressed Mary Beth focuses on him only to be blindsided by a shocking act of violence What happens afterwards is a testament to the power of a woman s love and determination and to the invisible lines of hope and healing that connect one human being with another Ultimately as rendered in Anna Quindlen s mesmerizing prose Every Last One is a novel about facing every last one of the things we fear most about finding ways to navigate a road we never intended to travel and about living a life we never dreamed we d have to live but find ourselves brave enough to try

Rating: 3.54 out of 5

Miller's Valley

Miller's Valley Description:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER In a small town on the verge of big change a young woman unearths deep secrets about her family and unexpected truths about herself Filled with insights that are the hallmark of Anna Quindlen s bestsellers em Miller s Valley em is an emotionally powerful story about a family you will never forget br br For generations the Millers have lived in Miller s Valley Mimi Miller tells about her life with intimacy and honesty As Mimi eavesdrops on her parents and quietly observes the people around her she discovers more and more about the toxicity of family secrets the dangers of gossip the flaws of marriage the inequalities of friendship and the risks of passion loyalty and love Home as Mimi begins to realize can be a place where it s just as easy to feel lost as it is to feel content br br em Miller s Valley em is a masterly study of family memory loss and ultimately discovery of finding true identity and a new vision of home As Mimi says No one ever leaves the town where they grew up even if they go Miller s Valley reminds us that the place where you grew up can disappear and the people in it too but all will live on in your heart forever

Rating: 3.31 out of 5

Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake

Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake Description:

In this irresistible memoir the New York Times bestselling author writes about her life and the lives of women today looking back and ahead and celebrating it all as she considers marriage girlfriends our mothers faith loss all that stuff in our closets and more br br It s odd when I think of the arc of my life from child to young woman to aging adult First I was who I was Then I didn t know who I was Then I invented someone and became her Then I began to like what I d invented And finally I was what I was again br br It turned out I wasn t alone in that particular progression br br As she did in her beloved New York Times columns and in A Short Guide to a Happy Life Quindlen says for us here what we may wish we could have said ourselves Using her past present and future to explore what matters most to women at different ages Quindlen talks about br br Marriage A safety net of small white lies can be the bedrock of a successful marriage You wouldn t believe how cheaply I can do a kitchen renovation br br Girlfriends Real friends offer both hard truths and soft landings and realize that it s sometimes more important to be nice than to be honest br br Our bodies I ve finally recognized my body for what it is a personality delivery system designed expressly to carry my character from place to place now and in the years to come It s like a car and while I like a red convertible or even a Bentley as well as the next person what I really need are four tires and an engine br br Parenting Being a parent is not transactional We do not get what we give It is the ultimate pay it forward We are good parents not so they will be loving enough to stay with us but so they will be strong enough to leave us br br From childhood memories to manic motherhood to middle age Quindlen uses the events of her own life to illuminate our own Along with the downsides of age she says can come wisdom a perspective on life that makes it both satisfying and even joyful So here s to lots of candles plenty of cake

Rating: 3.47 out of 5

Blessings

Blessings Description:

Late one night a teenage couple drives up to the big white clapboard home on the Blessing estate and leaves a box In that instant the lives of those who live and work there are changed forever Skip Cuddy the caretaker finds a baby girl asleep in that box and decides he wants to keep the child while Lydia Blessing the matriarch of the estate for her own reasons agrees to help him Blessings explores how the secrets of the past affect decisions and lives in the present what makes a person or a life legitimate or illegitimate and who decides and the unique resources people find in themselves and in a community This is a powerful novel of love redemption and personal change by the Pulitzer Prize winning writer about whom The Washington Post Book World said Quindlen knows that all the things we ever will be can be found in some forgotten fragment of family

Rating: 3.55 out of 5

Rise and Shine

Rise and Shine Description:

b A superb novel about two sisters the true meaning of success and the qualities in life that matter most b br br From Anna Quindlen acclaimed author of Blessings Black and Blue and One True Thing a superb novel about two sisters the true meaning of success and the qualities in life that matter most br br It s an otherwise ordinary Monday when Meghan Fitzmaurice s perfect life hits a wall A household name as the host of Rise and Shine the country s highest rated morning talk show Meghan cuts to a commercial break but not before she mutters two forbidden words into her open mike br br In an instant it s the end of an era not only for Meghan who is unaccustomed to dealing with adversity but also for her younger sister Bridget a social worker in the Bronx who has always lived in Meghan s long shadow The effect of Meghan s on air truth telling reverberates through both their lives affecting Meghan s son husband friends and fans as well as Bridget s perception of her sister their complex childhood and herself What follows is a story about how in very different ways the Fitzmaurice women adapt survive and manage to bring the whole teeming world of New York to heel by dint of their smart mouths quick wits and the powerful connection between them that even the worst tragedy cannot shatter

Rating: 3.74 out of 5

Object Lessons

Object Lessons Description:

It is the s in suburban New York City and twelve year old Maggie Scanlan begins to sense that despite the calm surface of her peaceful life everything is going strangely wrong br br When her all powerful grandfather is struck down by a stroke the reverberations affect Maggie s entire family Her normally dispassionate father breaks down her mother becomes distant and unavailable and matters only get worse when her cousin and her best friend start doing things to each other that leave Maggie confused about sex and terrified of sin br br With all of this upheaval how can she be sure that what she wants is even worth having

Rating: 3.66 out of 5

A Short Guide to a Happy Life

A Short Guide to a Happy Life Description:

b From the author of i Blessings i and i Still Life with Bread Crumbs i Anna Quindlen s classic reflection on a meaningful life is the perfect gift for graduation or any occasion b br br i Life is made of moments small pieces of silver amidst long stretches of tedium It would be wonderful if they came to us unsummoned but particularly in lives as busy as the ones most of us lead now that won t happen We have to teach ourselves now to live really live to love the journey not the destination i br br In this treasure of a book Anna Quindlen the bestselling novelist and columnist reflects on what it takes to get a life to live deeply every day and from your own unique self rather than merely to exist through your days Knowledge of our own mortality is the greatest gift God ever gives us Quindlen writes because unless you know the clock is ticking it is so easy to waste our days our lives Her mother died when Quindlen was nineteen It was the dividing line between seeing the world in black and white and in Technicolor The lights came on for the darkest possible reason I learned something enduring in a very short period of time about life And that was that it was glorious and that you had no business taking it for granted But how to live from that perspective to fully engage in our days In i A Short Guide to a Happy Life i Quindlen guides us with an understanding that comes from knowing how to see the view the richness in living

Rating: 3.42 out of 5