Saturday, November 28, 2015

Her Lost Love

This is the most romantic book I've read in the series so far!

Her Lost Love is the fifth book in the Amelia Moore Detective series, a cozy mystery series by a very prolific author, Linda Weaver Clarke. This book features an attractive and successful lawyer in her mid-forties, Julie Anderson, who hires detective Amelia Moore to find her lost love, Joseph Yancey Witherbee.  When they were children, Julie nicknamed him "Joey".  They became great friends, and fell in love when they were older, but they lost track of each other during their college years, when Julie was studying to become a lawyer.  Twenty-four years have passed since they last saw each other!  Julie wants to try to find Joey before she agrees to marry her current suitor, Senator Fox.  

In Her Lost Love, Julie gives Amelia a bundle of her love letters from Joey, which may provide clues for the detective. 

"Please know that you are the only girl meant for me.  Believe me, Julie! I mean it from the depths of my heart."
 ~ Her Lost Love, Linda Weaver Clarke

His letters are quite passionate, and Amelia is touched by their romantic nature; this makes Joey's disappearance all the more puzzling; she wonders why he stopped writing to Julie, what has happened to him, and where he may be, if he's still alive.  With the help of her partner, Rick Benito, Amelia is determined to find Joey.  

There is plenty of good, "old-fashioned" romance in this cozy, which features lost love, love letters, and more.  Her Lost Love also focuses on the ongoing, growing romantic relationship between Amelia and Rick, who work together.

'I'll always be by your side, Amelia.  You can't get rid of me that easy.  So please do some serious thinking about our relationship.'
 ~ Her Lost Love, Linda Weaver Clarke 

These main characters show restraint rather than rushing into a physical relationship; Rick respects Amelia's feelings, and is willing to take it slow.  I enjoyed this book very much.  It's romantic and exciting, and the ending of the book is altogether perfect.  I look forward to reading the next book in the series, Mystery on the Bayou (although I cannot promise I'll read it in a timely manner).

Warm thanks to Linda Weaver Clarke for her patience with me!  Linda sent me this book several months ago, and has waited quietly for me to read it.  I also appreciate the patience of my readers.  For the past six months, I have featured numerous book giveaways here, but I haven't posted many reviews, although I've continued to read for pleasure.

As always, I welcome your comments, which help create brief, book-related conversations.  Thanks for reading!

Monday, November 9, 2015

The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto

Thanks, Amy!  Several years ago, Amy, my youngest sister, urged me to read Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom, which tells the story of Morrie Schwartz, who was a college professor of the author.  I read it, and like many others, was incredibly touched by the book.  It is, I've learned recently, the bestselling memoir of all time.

Have you read any books by Mitch Albom?  If so, which ones did you enjoy the most?  I've read quite a few of them, including The Five People You Meet in HeavenFor One More Day, Have a Little Faith, and The First Phone Call from Heaven.  I reviewed Have a Little Faith and The First Phone Call from Heaven on this blog.  Obviously, I'm a fan of the author's work.  Books written by Mitch Albom take hold of my emotions, of my heart.  Naturally, I was eager to read an advance reader's edition of Mitch Albom's new novel, The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto, which will be released very soon, on November 10.

The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto is the story of a very talented singer and guitarist.  The book begins by noting the death of the main character, Francisco de Asisi Pascual Presto, known as Frankie Presto, who was born in Spain in the city of Villareal in 1936.  The novel goes back and forth in time to tell the story of Frankie's life, and the lives he changed with his music and his six blue strings.  The story is told by various narrators, including real musicians and singers such as Darlene Love, Roger McGuinn (the Byrds), Paul Stanley (KISS), Tony Bennett, and Wynton Marsalis, and by the most essential and prevalent narrator, Music.  It's a bold way to present the story, using the voice of Music, but it works because Mitch Albom is such a talented and creative writer (I also learned that he's a talented, lifelong musician himself).

"All humans are musical.  Why else would the Lord give you a beating heart?"
"Here is what I know of love.  It changes the way you treat me.  I feel it in your hands.  Your fingers. Your compositions. The sudden rush of peppy phrases, major sevenths, melody lines that resolve neatly and sweetly, like a valentine tucked in an envelope."
~ The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto, Mitch Albom 

The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto makes numerous wonderful statements about music (please note that the quotations above may change, as they are not from the final edition of the book).  Music is certainly one of life's great pleasures as far as I'm concerned.  The older I get, the more I appreciate (many different kinds of) music.  When I listen to music, I feel it deeply.

In addition to the music in this book, there's a wonderful love story, between Frankie and Aurora York, and there is more magic as well, sprinkled throughout the pages. And there are many "little touches" in this book that I enjoyed a great deal, such as a "cameo appearance" by Hank Williams (I adore his music). 

Like his other books, The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto reminds us and inspires us to live with passion and purpose, and to love deeply.  Although it's fiction, there's some true history in this book, and many musicians and musical events, such as Woodstock, are depicted, in a realistic manner.  The author met with many of the musician "characters" in this book, and the result is an imaginative yet believable, thoroughly entertaining novel.  I LOVED this book!

Special thanks to Trish from TLC for including me on this tour.  For more reviews of this book, please visit the other stops on TLC's blog tour for The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto.  Thanks for reading!  Your comments are welcomed.

Some of the books featured here were given to me free of charge by authors, publishers, and agents. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.


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