Posted in Book Reviews, love story, mystery, romance, tagged Alabama, Black Lyon Publishing, Book Reviews, books, Fiction, love story, Margaret P. Cunningham, mystery, New Releases, One True Place, Working Girl Reviews on June 7, 2010|
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One True Place
By Margaret Cunningham
Black Lyon Publishing: Coming June 15, 2010
When her husband, successful Orthodontist Burkett Cowley, dies suddenly in his office one bright summer morning, True Cowley is stunned. But becoming an unexpected widow is only the beginning of unpleasant surprises. When it comes to light that Burkett’s gambling debts have left her near penniless, True takes advantage of a free burial plot in their mutual birth place of Belle Hill, Alabama. True left Belle Hill as a child of four, after her mother’s accidental drowning death, and has not been back since. But when she returns for her husband’s funeral, True finds herself inexplicably drawn to the town and the family secrets it harbors. Shortly after the funeral, True sells her Florida home and returns to Belle Hill for good.
She is soon befriended by eccentric octogenarian, Maisy Downey, and Maisy’s handsome- beyond-belief nephew, Jackson Bean. The pair promises to aide True in her quest to understand the mother she never knew. But in her search for her roots, True uncovers more questions that must be answered and issues she must come to terms with if she is to resolve the past and move ahead into the bright, happy future that is offered.
I enjoyed this story tremendously. True Cowley is a flawed but loveable character who I could sympathize with and cheer for with each turn of the page. I loved the interaction between her and Jackson and the way the romance developed slowly and sweetly. I also enjoyed the touching relationship True shared with her grandchildren. Having also enjoyed the author’s debut novel, Lily in Bloom, I was excited to return to southern Alabama and reconnect with some of the characters from that first book. The author’s skillful descriptions, both of people and setting, seemed to transport me into this charming village filled with unusual people and beautiful flora.
Margaret Cunningham writes with humor and grace, weaving a tale that is filled with romance and surprises. One True Place offers its readers so many things — romance, mystery, and a lovely story of a woman’s quest to reconcile herself with her past. I recommend this story to anyone who enjoys a light, humorous, Southern love story.
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Lily In Bloom
By Margaret P. Cunningham
Black Lyon Publishing, May 2008
Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Lily-Bloom-Margaret-P-Cunningham/dp/1934912026
These long, cold months really have me longing for my gardens. As the snow piles up outside, I find my head filling with ideas for new garden spots, my hands itching to get out and dig in the soil. With two feet of snow making my gardens indistinguishable from the rest of the yard and a good six weeks left of winter, I found the next best thing in Margaret P. Cunningham’s debut novel, Lily in Bloom.
Lily McVay has always taken good care of herself. At fifty she is physically fit and alarmingly attractive. That’s why she is stunned when her husband, Howard, runs off with his much younger assistant, Heather. Insult is added to injury when Howard demands a divorce and the terms of their settlement hinge on the restoration of Lily’s deceased mother-in-law’s prize-winning gardens. Months later, discouraged by a string of disastrous blind dates, prank phone calls that begin to come with increasing regularity, and the unsettling feeling that her house is haunted by her mother-in-law’s ghost, Lily focuses her attention on the task at hand; bringing the once-gorgeous gardens back to their former glory in time for the town’s annual soiree. The daunting task is soon lightened by the presence of sexy master gardener, Will. As they work together to rebuild the garden, Lily finds herself growing more and more attracted to the irresistible Will. Telling herself the sixteen-year age difference is insurmountable, Lily fights her attraction, turning her attention to finding out the reason for the unsettling presence that haunts her home, and the meaning of the strange, unsettling phone calls. With a little sleuthing and the help of her eccentric neighbor, Lily soon unearths some surprising family secrets, along with a forgotten old fountain. As the weeks pass, Lily and Will’s labors begin to pay off and the garden is not the only thing that begins to flourish …
There was an awful lot to love about this book. The premise was delightful, and the many interesting plot twists had me eagerly turning the pages to see how things would all work out for this star-crossed couple. I enjoyed the interaction between Lily and her middle-aged, well meaning friends, Helen and Marilee, and I thought the author did a wonderful job of developing the romance between Lily and Will. Her offbeat sense of humor and obvious love of gardening were woven throughout this beautifully written story. I would recommend Lily in Bloom to anyone who likes romance sprinkled with humor.
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