It Started in June


Susan Kietzman - 2018
    After a few weeks of exhilarating secret dates, Grace--forty-two and divorced--realizes she's pregnant.For Grace, whose estranged mother refers to her own teenage pregnancy as her biggest mistake, the prospect of parenthood is daunting. She's just been made vice president of a media relations company and is childfree by choice. Still, something deeper than her fear makes her want to keep the baby. She knows she can be a better, more capable parent than her mother was to her.As months pass and seasons change, Grace questions her decision to include Bradley in her plans. But they continue to navigate their complicated relationship, each struggling with what it means to make a commitment to someone. Most importantly, Grace begins trusting her instincts--maternal and otherwise--finding courage that will guide her through an uncertain future ripe with new possibilities . . .Praise for the novels of Susan Kietzman "Beautifully written and closely observed . . . captures the deep and complicated love of family. Reading this lovely novel, I felt the embrace of summer on the shoreline."--New York Times bestselling author Luanne Rice on The Summer Cottage "Readers will find themselves drawn into the tragedies and triumphs of this fictional family--distinct and yet utterly relatable." --Hartford Books Examiner on The Good Life

One Summer in Venice


Nicky Pellegrino - 2015
    I'm calling it a happiness project. I've stolen an entire summer from my life and by the time it's over I plan to leave this place with a list in my hand. The ten things that make me happy' Addolorata Martinelli knows she should be happy. She has everything she thought she wanted - her own business, a husband, a child. So why does she feel as if something is missing? Then when her restaurant, Little Italy, is slated by a reviewer, she realises that she's lost the one thing she thought she could always count on, her love of food.So Addolorata heads to Venice for a summer alone, aiming to find the ten things that make her happy. Once she's found them, she'll construct a new life around her ten things, but will they include her life in London?

The Hideaway


Sheila O'Flanagan - 2018
    Perfect for readers of Catherine Alliott and Marian Keyes. What would you do if you discovered you were living a lie? When a shocking news report shatters Juno Ryan's world, she suddenly finds herself without the man she loves - and with no way of getting the answers she so desperately needs.A distraught Juno flees to the enchanting Villa Naranja in Spain. The blue skies and bountiful orange groves - along with Pep, the winemaker's handsome son - begin to soothe her broken heart, but only Juno herself can mend it.Just when she begins to feel whole again another bombshell falls. Can Juno put the past behind her? And will she ever learn to trust herself again?

Family Secrets


Nancy Thayer - 1993
    Back then, she was a smart, feisty girl who landed a spot on War Stories, one of the hottest literary reviews in the nation. Her straitlaced military family didn't envision a stint as a war correspondent as the proper venue for their well-protected daughter, and much preferred that she settle down with someone reliable, like Al White. And so she does, but not before she lives just a little... Diane, her daughter, is a woman in the middle in every way, juggling her growing jewelry business with the demands of her husband and children with admirable aplomb... until the day the FBI comes knocking on their door, asking about her mother... Julia, Diane's daughter and a student at the prestigious Gressex Academy, has a secret of her own. She has fallen in love with Sam Weyborn - with a passion only possible when one is eighteen. Nothing matters more than being with him, and she's willing - despite her mother's deep concern - to risk everything to be with him forever. Three generations of women - grandmother, mother, daughter - each at a turning point, each linked by the secrets they discover about themselves and each other, secrets that reach back to the days of World War II and some of the most exciting times of this century. For each, the process of discovery will be an unforgettable one - dramatic, heart-wrenching, but ultimately healing - and one that will bring them together in a way nothing before in their lives has. Not since her classic Three Women at the Water's Edge has Nancy Thayer created a generational novel this memorable. Whether you're just discovering Nancy Thayer or have been a devoted reader for years, Family Secrets is a richly textured, wholly adsorbing story that will ring true for women of all ages.

HRT: Husband Replacement Therapy


Kathy Lette - 2020
    But after a few too many glasses of champers, Ruby’s speech doesn’t exactly go to plan. Instead of delivering the witty and warm words her guests are expecting, Ruby takes her moment in the spotlight to reveal what she really thinks of every one of them. She also accuses her husband, Harry, of having an affair, and reads to the audience the evidence she found on his phone that very morning.Saving the best till last, Ruby lambasts her calculating octogenarian mother for a lifetime of playing her three daughters against each other. It’s blisteringly brutal. As the stunned gathering gawks at Ruby, the birthday girl concludes her bravura monologue with the throwaway comment that she has terminal cancer. She has cashed in her life savings and plans on taking her two sisters cruising until she dies. Courageous? Or ruthlessly selfish?But, do they even want to go with her? And, was it her medical results she read?

The Distance Between Us


Masha Hamilton - 2004
    It’s the ethical thing for a journalist to do, especially in a war-torn region like the Middle East. And Caddie wants to believe that nothing is as important as covering “the story.”There’s room for passion in her life—but that’s only physical. And Caddie keeps even those fleeting attachments under wraps, secretive, because she knows that when a journalist even appears to lose her detachment, she is already lost.So what is Caddie to feel when her lover dies beside her—shot in an ambush on the way to the next promising political interview, across the Israeli border into Lebanon?An authentic look at the emotional and ethical chaos within a war correspondent who becomes a bit too involved, Masha Hamilton’s The Distance Between Us is a straight-ahead story of human passion—desire, conviction, and the guilt of a survivor—struggling for order within the frayed justice of the Middle East conflict.A seasoned journalist herself, Masha Hamilton brings to this revealing novel the sharp eye and deep empathy that marked her debut, Staircase of a Thousand Steps (BlueHen, 2001). Beautifully turned, and peopled with an astounding cast of characters who are as true as they are perceptive, The Distance Between Us is finally the portrait of one woman’s search for the narrow pass between vengeance and emotional survival, when her only true attachment has been torn away from her.“If we knew where we were going to fall,” the novel’s most enigmatic character tells her, “we could spread straw.”

Of Men and Their Mothers


Mameve Medwed - 2008
    . .It's a truth that the newly unhyphenated Maisie Grey has learned the hard way. After getting rid of her mama's-boy husband, she happily settles down with her teenage son, Tommy. But she's still stuck with the hovering presence of her impossible mother-in-law, Tommy's grandmother, who refuses to exit the family stage gracefully.Trying to keep it together with her own business and a new relationship with a man who still lives in—where else but?—his mother's house, Maisie struggles to learn from the MIL-from-hell. She vows that when Tommy brings someone home, she'll be loving, empathetic, and supportive. But then along comes completely unsuitable September Silva—with her too-short skirts, black nail polish, and stay-out-all-night attitude—who is forcing Maisie to take a flinty, clear-eyed new look at what it means to be a mother.

If I Fall


Ella Harper - 2018
     I’m really sorry for what I’m about to do... It’s fifteen years since graduation, and Connie, Jonas, JJ and Layla have managed to remain close despite the odds. They’ve supported each other, but are some things too big for friendship?Connie is desperate to maintain the veneer of perfect family life.Jonas is feeling the pressure at work.Layla’s career is unravelling thanks to her ill motherJJ’s past is catching up with him.When they stumble and fall, who will be there to catch them?A truly powerful and unforgettable story of love, friendship, and real life, If I Fall is perfect for readers of Alice Peterson, Amanda Prowse and Lianne Moriarty. Praise for Ella Harper: ‘You won’t be able to stop reading’  Heat Magazine ‘This book was heartbreaking but beautiful...Such a joy to read, while holding back tears’ Til Then Smile Often‘Only very rarely does a book come along that captures me and engages me as much as this one did… But don't despair, the ending was uplifting and filled with promise’ Bookish Bits‘I finished the book with a whopping big lump in my throat but with joy in my heart’ JaffaReads‘Wonderful, heart-breaking and poignant… The story touched me to the core with its deeply moving plot, beautiful characters and a unique, inspiring and insightful plot’ Read Day and Night ‘A great book to curl up with’  Daily Mail ‘I had tears in my eyes’ Bookworms and Shutterbugs‘A beautiful emotional story… I shed quite a few tears while reading this book. It's a marvelous must-read’ With Love for Books‘I have a feeling this book will stay with me for a long time’ Lilac Mills‘Warm, perceptive and razor sharp. It’s everything you want from a novel’ Veronica Henry

An Absolute Deception


Lesley Lokko - 2012
    Anneliese never talks about her past - not even to her only daughter, Callan. She's worked hard to leave it all behind her and it's a time and place to which Anneliese will never return. Or so she thinks.

Sweet Home Summer


Michelle Vernal - 2018
    Burnt out and tired of an unfulfilling profession and lousy boyfriends, it’s time for her to go home.Arriving back in cosy Bibury to stay with her grandmother, Bridget, everything is charmingly familiar. Even her childhood sweetheart, Ben, is as handsome as she remembered…And when she discovers a stack of long-forgotten Valentine’s Day cards, Isla, with the help of Ben, begins to realise exactly what is most important in life.

Just Like Other Daughters


Colleen Faulkner - 2013
    Days later, when tests confirmed what Alicia already knew--that Chloe had Down syndrome--she didn't falter. Her ex-husband wanted a child who would grow to be a scholar. For Alicia, it's enough that Chloe just is.Now twenty-five, Chloe is sweet, funny, and content. Alicia brings her to adult daycare while she teaches at a local college. One day Chloe arrives home thrumming with excitement, and says the words Alicia never anticipated. She has met someone--a young man named Thomas. Within days, Chloe and Thomas, also mentally challenged, declare themselves in love.Alicia strives to see past her misgivings to the new possibilities opening up for her daughter. Shouldn't Chloe have the same right to love as anyone else? But there is no way to prepare for the relationship unfolding, or for the moments of heartbreak and joy ahead.With grace and warmth, Colleen Faulkner tells an unflinching yet heartrending story of mothers and daughters, and of the risks we all take, both in loving and in letting go.

A Cornish Stranger


Liz Fenwick - 2014
    Once a celebrated artist, Jaunty's days are coming to a close but she is still haunted by events in her past, particularly the sinking of Lancasteria during the war. Everything is fine until a handsome stranger arrives in a storm, seeking help. Finn has been left a family legacy: a delicate watercolour of a sailing boat which leads him to this beautiful stretch of Cornish water. As Finn begins to pick at the clues of the painting, he is drawn into the lives of Gabe and Jaunty, unraveling a remarkable story of identity and betrayal . . .In her delightful new novel, Liz Fenwick weaves a spelling binding tale of romance and intrigue, set against the gorgeous Cornish coast.

The Figgs


Ali Bryan - 2018
    June, the family's matriarch, looks forward to a quiet retirement — if only she can get her three adult children to finally, finally, move out of the house. But her dreams are shattered when her son Derek unexpectedly becomes a single father. Now there's a newborn baby at home, and Derek's older siblings are showing no sign of going anywhere either. In the midst of the chaos, June's husband, Randy, has a shocking revelation.With family life flying fast and furious around her, June finds herself thinking about her parents — adoptive and biological. Where did she come from? Will her new grandson be traumatized without his mother? And why in the world are all the kids still at home, anyway?The Figgs combines the quirkiness of Miriam Toews, the startling humour and fierce energy of Heather O'Neill, the heart of Little Miss Sunshine and the unruly family dynamics of Jonathan Tropper's This Is Where I Leave You into one hilarious, immensely fun novel.

Imogen


Jilly Cooper - 1978
    Her holiday with tennis ace, Nicky, and his whole glamorous coteriewas a revelation - and so was she. A prize worth winning. A wild Yorkshire rose among the thorny model girls, Cable and Yvonne, with a rare asset that they'd mislaid years ago... But the path of a jet-set virgin in that lovely wicked world was a hard one. Imogen began to wonder if virtue really was its own reward.

The Carmel Sheehan Story: Three Book Collection


Jean Grainger - 2018
    She gets right to the heart of Ireland.'  Kate Kerrigan, NYT Bestselling author of the Ellis Island Trilogy. Carmel Sheehan was raised in an orphanage in Dublin, and always believed what she was told, that her unmarried mother abandoned her as a newborn. Forty years later, living in rural Ireland, in an unfulfilling marriage, and she has no reason to suspect that version of her past was untrue, until she gets a Facebook message one day from a stranger claiming it was all lies.In this gripping boxed set, Carmel begins a journey of discovery that takes her back to a time long before she was born when love and loyalty, betrayals and secrets decided her fate. The reality of her true story is both shocking and heartwarming, and Carmel learns that in order to go forward, she must first make peace with her past. What reviewers are saying: 'Move over Maeve Binchy, I laughed and cried and walked every step of Carmel's incredible journey with her.' 'You know those books you read sparingly because you want them to last? This is one of those.' 'All the magic and mystery of Ireland wrapped up in an intriguing story that is ultimatly uplifting and satifying.'