Saturday, April 18, 2015

Fantastic Fiction Friday

Once a month, one of our branches has Fantastic Fiction Friday. Usually, they discuss just one book, but you all know that's not my style. I want to talk about all kinds of books. So, I picked twenty books. Remember, these might not be all my favorites. They were fiction titles on the shelf at the branch library.

One Hundred Names by Cecelia Ahern. After journalist Kitty Logan watches her career crumble because of a scandal, she asks her mentor what story she always wanted to cover. The clues are on a piece of paper with one hundred names, but Kitty's friend dies before she can tell her about those names.

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen. Allen's debut novel introduced the Waverley women, unusual even in their unusual North Carolina town. The women have always had a way with plants, and they tend an apple tree that is rumored to be magical. Some of the family work with their abilities, while one sister runs from it.

Home for the Haunting by Juliet Blackwell. Part of Blackwell's Haunted Home Renovation series, this one finds contractor Mel Turner doing a good deed, leading a volunteer home renovation project, only to get caught up in murder and ghosts at a house the kids call "The Murder House".

Scent of Murder by James O. Born. Introduces a special team of Florida K-9 cops led by Deputy Tim Hallett who get caught up in the search for a dangerous predator. Told from multiple viewpoints, including that of one of the dogs, this is action-packed mystery.

Between Heaven and Texas by Marie Bostwick. In a prequel to the Cobbled Court Quilt series, Bostwick takes readers to a small Texas town, where the Templeton sisters fall for the wrong men, but find their true calling, and the true meaning of family.

One Book in the Grave by Kate Carlisle. In the fifth Bibliophile mystery, bookbinder Brooklyn Wainwright agrees to restore a copy of Beauty and the Beast until she discovers it was once owned by a friend who died in a suspicious car accident.

Sworn to Silence by Linda Castillo. The first Kate Burkholder novel introduced the new Police Chief of Painters Mill, Ohio. Burkholder, from Painters Mill, suffered through a terrible crime as a young Amish girl, left her religion, and, now must deal with her past and new crimes when a body is found in the snow.

Tallgrass by Sandra Dallas. My favorite Sandra Dallas book tells of a family who sees their Colorado small town turned upside down when a Japanese internment camp is built there during World War II. Told through the eyes of Rennie Stroud, a thirteen-year-old girl, the story has an unusual perspective.

Charms for the Easy Life by Kaye Gibbons. A fascinating story of three generations of women in North Carolina, told by the adult granddaughter during World War II, with a focus on her grandmother, a self-educated medicine woman who treated everyone.

The Fortune Hunter by Daisy Goodwin. One of my favorites of 2014, the story brings together Elizabeth (Sisi), Empress of Austria, Captain Bay Middleton, an impoverished British horseman, and Charlotte Baird, an heiress who falls for Bay, until he helps the Empress when she comes to England to hunt, and falls under Sisi's sway.

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. One that will undoubtedly make my favorites of 2015 list, this powerful novel of two sisters in Occupied France has been optioned for a movie. In 1939, when Germany moves into France, two sisters react very differently. While one secretly works in the Resistance, the other does everything she can to keep her family alive.

Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman. If I can put my hands on this book, it always makes my list of favorites. Optioned for a movie, this is the story of young CeeCee Honeycutt whose early life is tragic until her great-aunt swoops in and takes her to Savannah where, for one summer, she learns about life from a group of eccentric, strong women.

Spirit of Steamboat by Craig Johnson. A wonderful Christmas novella featuring Sheriff Walt Longmire and his predecessor, Lucian Connally, a WWII vet who flew in the Dootlittle raid on Tokyo. When a young woman comes looking for Lucian on a Christmas Eve, and whispers "Steamboat", the memories take them back to a Christmas Eve in 1988, and a heroic flight during a blizzard.

Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger. In his fifties, Frank Drum looks back at a Minnesota summer when he was thirteen, and found his entire life changed by a number of deaths, as his observations made him grow up.

Due or Die by Jenn McKinlay. What better way to end National Library Week than with one of the mysteries in the Library Lover's Mystery series? Library Director Lindsey Norris investigates when the president of the Library Board is the primary suspect in the murder of her husband.

The All You Can Dream Buffet by Barbara O'Neal. A novel of food and friendship brings together four different women, all food bloggers, as they meet for the first time when one of the women plans to turn her lavender farm over to the woman who would treat it with love.

Julie and Romeo by Jeanne Ray. Two rival florists fall in love, but their feuding families interfere in this delightful story.

A Star for Mrs. Blake by April Smith. In 1929, Congress passed legislation to send the mothers of soldiers who died in World War I to France to visit their sons' graves. This novel follows five of those mothers, emphasizing Cora Blake, a woman who has lived almost her entire life in a Maine fishing village.

While We Were Watching Downton Abbey by Wendy Wax. The concierge of an historic Atlanta apartment building invites the residents to attend weekly screenings of Downton Abbey. Unexpectedly, four people find themselves not only connecting with the show, but with each other.

Unleashing Mr. Darcy by Teri Wilson. Wilson just announced that this charming version of Pride and Prejudice, set in the world of show dogs in England, has been optioned by the Hallmark Channel. New Yorker Elizabeth Scott believes caring for a pack of show dogs in England is just what she needs to get over the scandal in her teaching career. She doesn't count on her attraction to the arrogant billionaire and dog breeder Donovan Darcy.

Twenty titles for Fantastic Fiction Friday. Some of my favorites. Have you found one or two you haven't read?


Kay said...

You had some good ones here. I laughed at "usually they discuss just one book, but I picked 20". LOL

Many good ones here - old favorites. Tallgrass - I need to reread that one. I loved it. And Julie and Romeo! Haven't thought about that one for long time.

Kaye Barley said...

As usual, you've given me some titles to add to my list of books to check into - Thank You!

And, as usual, you've chosen some books that I have also read and loved.

But, one that I have on my iPad and have forgotten about is One Hundred Names by Cecelia Ahern. This just moved to the top of my TBR stack.

Happy Weekend, Lesa!! <3

Lesa said...

I know, Kay. I'm not good at leading a book discussion. I want to talk about all kinds of books, not just one. Lots of old favorites on that list for me!

Lesa said...

You're welcome, Kaye! Love to give you some new titles! Hugs! Good weekend. I went to the Southern Kentucky Book Fest today. Tomorrow, relaxing & more books!