Emma London never thought she had anything in common with her grandmother Genevieve London. The regal old woman came from wealthy and bluest-blood New England stock, but that didn’t protect her from life’s cruelest blows: the disappearance of Genevieve’s young son, followed by the premature death of her husband. But Genevieve rose from those ashes of grief and built a fashion empire that was respected the world over, even when it meant neglecting her other son.
When Emma’s own mother died, her father abandoned her on his mother’s doorstep. Genevieve took Emma in and reluctantly raised her—until Emma got pregnant her senior year of high school. Genevieve kicked her out with nothing but the clothes on her back…but Emma took with her the most important London possession: the strength not just to survive but to thrive. And indeed, Emma has built a wonderful life for herself and her teenage daughter, Riley.
So what is Emma to do when Genevieve does the one thing Emma never expected of her and, after not speaking to her for nearly two decades, calls and asks for help?l
From the very first page of Life and Other Inconveniences, I was immersed in the family dynamics and the intriguing characters. They felt so real, and they kept me smiling, laughing, and sometimes crying.
Emma was my favorite character, along with her daughter Riley. Genevieve, whom we came to know a little better when her alternating narrative took over, kept me intrigued. She was a mixed bag of sadness, loss, and the kind of staunch grit that comes with her background and experiences.
There were times that I could almost empathize with Clark, Emma’s father, but he was such a weak imitation of the life he could have had.
So many troubled characters who could have had more, but who sank to the lowest of lows when confronted with difficulty. Or those little inconveniences that life throws at us. These were the characters against whom we cast the truly great ones, like Emma and Riley.
Then we meet Miller, and watch him deal with his challenging daughter Tess, and the combination of Emma and Miller made my heart soar. A lovely 4.5 star read.
As I turn the pages of my current read, Life and Other Inconveniences, I am thoroughly enjoying the characters without the kinds of twists and turns I usually savor. The book is not a thriller, but it does show us the dynamics of characters and the interactions I enjoy.
In addition to reading, I am also relishing my usual snapping of photos that remind me that my interiors are another part of my life that I enjoy. Since I am mostly still isolated.
On my nightstand, I have collected a few print volumes to pick up soon, in addition to my current read. To the left is my chest of drawers with a favorite decorative box atop it…next to my calculator. I also love the hippie dolls on the nearby filing cabinet. Below, note a close-up of favorite photos. An Ireland photo on the right, and an “I Love You” creation from my daughter on the left.
So…as I read and write posts and practice the Block Editor, I plan to somehow succeed at dealing with isolation and challenges.
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Wife comes an atmospheric novel of intertwined destinies and heart-wrenching suspense: A detective hiding away from the world. A series of disappearances that reach into her past. Can solving them help her heal?
I am eager to read this one from a favorite author.
What are you enjoying today? Book buying? Reading?
Another Tuesday has come along with beautiful new books. I downloaded one today from Joshilyn Jackson, whose books I haven’t read in a while.
Mother May I is the story of domestic suspense in which a mother must decide how far she is willing to go to protect her child and the life she loves—an unforgettable tale of power, privilege, lies, revenge, and the choices we make, ones that transform our lives in unforeseen ways.
An urban tale of love against the odds, in which Max, an upwardly mobile copywriter and Nora, a 40 year-old waitress from the wrong side of town, become embroiled in a torrid affair.
White Palacewas a book I read after I had seen the James Spader/Susan Sarandon movie, which I loved and viewed several times.
The language in the book, including the dialogue, mirrored many aspects of the movie, and I especially liked how both the book and the movie showed us Max’s fussy behavior, like constantly straightening the fringes on his rug and arranging his clothes in the closet to emphasize the style and color. Nora, on the other hand, lived a chaotic and messy lifestyle, but her exuberance appealed to Max.
From Max’s point of view, we see Nora’s glaring imperfections, which somehow draw him to her even more than the beauty of his deceased wife.
Their journey together had many ups and downs, and often they seemed very incompatible. When an unexpected event happened, their relationship ended, but Max felt the loss of her deeply. What would he do to reconnect with her? Would they finally pick up the pieces? A 4 star read.
“Hitchcockian chills and thrills abound in Swanson’s latest mystery, a twisty tale of survival and deception. ” – O, theOprah Magazine
A bride’s dream honeymoon becomes a nightmare when a man with whom she’s had a regrettable one-night stand shows up in this electrifying psychological thriller from the acclaimed author of Eight Perfect Murders.
Then I received a book from another favorite author:
Jessica Strawser’s A Million Reasons Why is “a fascinating foray into the questions we are most afraid to ask” (Jodi Picoult, #1 New York Times bestselling author)–the story of two women who discover a bond between them that will change both their lives forever.
As for what I am reading now…I started a book on the weekend, and kept trying to engage…but finally I had to DNF it! Sigh. It was the kind of book in which I had to keep rereading sections because nothing captured me.
Among fake Instagram pages, long-buried family secrets, and the horrors of middle school, one suburban mom searches to find herself in a heartfelt and thought-provoking novel from the author of Minor Dramas and Other Catastrophes.
Welcome to the weekend! As I sit at my laptop sipping coffee and ordering groceries via my Instacart app, I am also feeling cozy. I snapped a few more entry way photos after my little rag doll, above on the table, arrived. Here’s another photo of her from the product page:
I think she needs a name! I usually name my dolls, my devices, and even my cars…but I no longer have a car.
I will think about that for a while. I am leaning towards Pippa, which was what I named my Paperwhite Kindle…which I no longer have. What do you think?
Or perhaps Phoebe. You may notice my tendency toward names beginning with “P,” like my current Kindle called Paige.