A haunting meditation on lives that intersect in unexpected ways.



A mysterious event leads to an unlikely connection between an actor and an artist in this novel.

In 1984, Nora Forrest lives a quiet and contented life in Boston. She is happily married to a man named Rick and enjoys success as an artist. Although she was “never the crush type,” she has a deep affection for Irish actor Hugh Sheenan. When her sister, Fran, tells her Hugh is starring on Broadway in a production called The Lion’s Share, Nora asks her mother in New York to purchase tickets. Before she leaves for the trip, she has a cryptic and baffling dream about Hugh. In New York, Hugh prepares for the play with the help of his trusted friend and secretary, Leon. The show is going well, but he is troubled by a peculiar dream involving a young woman. Nora is enchanted by The Lion’s Share, but toward the end of the final act something happens that neither she nor Hugh can understand or explain. After Nora returns to Boston, she sends Hugh a letter and a drawing of her impression of his performance. The drawing haunts Hugh, prompting him to arrange a visit with Nora in Boston, setting the stage for an encounter that may answer their questions about what happened during the play. The latest novel from Wald (Wonderbender, 2011, etc.) is an intelligent and sensitive exploration of the ineffable power of connection and coincidence. The inventive narrative is told from the perspectives of four characters: Nora, Hugh, Leon, and Rick. In chapters that alternate among these characters’ first-person points of view, the tale of Hugh’s fateful turn in The Lion’s Share and its aftermath unfolds along with the love story of Nora and Rick. While the theatrical performance lies at the heart of the narrative, flashbacks throughout the book enable the author to examine Nora’s relationship with her husband and her admiration for Hugh as well as the actor’s career and his turbulent personal life. Wald’s elegant and graceful prose begs to be savored: “After I mailed the drawing, I thought the circle was complete. In a way I wished that I’d taken a photograph of it so it would not be so irrevocably gone from my life, but in another way its absence made the sacrifice sweeter.”

A haunting meditation on lives that intersect in unexpected ways.

Pub Date: April 16, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-63152-517-9

Page Count: 256

Publisher: She Writes Press

Review Posted Online: Jan. 11, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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Another success for the publishing phenom.


An abused boy fights back, escapes, then returns as an attorney to his beloved hometown, but just as he’s falling in love with a transplanted landscaper, a series of attacks from shadowy enemies jeopardizes their happiness.

“From the outside, the house in Lakeview Terrace looked perfect.” Which of course means that it wasn't. We're introduced to the horrifying Dr. Graham Bigelow, who beats his wife and, increasingly as the boy gets older, his son, Zane. On the night of Zane’s prom, a particularly savage attack puts him and his sister in the hospital, and his father blames Zane, landing him in jail. Then his sister stands up for him, enlisting the aid of their aunt, and everything changes, mainly due to Zane’s secret diaries. Nearly 20 years later, Zane leaves a successful career as a lawyer to return to Lakeview, where his aunt and sister live with their families, deciding to hang a shingle as a small-town lawyer. Then he meets Darby McCray, the landscaper who’s recently relocated and taken the town by storm, starting with the transformation of his family’s rental bungalows. The two are instantly intrigued by each other, but they move slowly into a relationship neither is looking for. Darby has a violent past of her own, so she is more than willing to take on the risk of antagonizing a boorish local family when she and Zane help an abused wife. Suddenly Zane and Darby face one attack after another, and even as they grow ever closer under the pressure, the dangers become more insidious. Roberts’ latest title feels a little long and the story is slightly cumbersome, but her greatest strength is in making the reader feel connected to her characters, so “unnecessary details” can also charm and engage.

Another success for the publishing phenom.

Pub Date: July 9, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-20709-8

Page Count: 448

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: April 14, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2019

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A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

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The much-loved royal romance genre gets a fun and refreshing update in McQuiston’s debut.

Alex Claremont-Diaz, son of the American President Ellen Claremont, knows one thing for sure: He hates Henry, the British prince to whom he is always compared. He lives for their verbal sparring matches, but when one of their fights at a royal wedding goes a bit too far, they end up falling into a wedding cake and making tabloid headlines. An international scandal could ruin Alex’s mother’s chances for re-election, so it’s time for damage control. The plan? Alex and Henry must pretend to be best friends, giving the tabloids pictures of their bromance and neutralizing the threat to Ellen's presidency. But after a few photo ops with Henry, Alex starts to realize that the passionate anger he feels toward him might be a cover for regular old passion. There are, naturally, a million roadblocks between their first kiss and their happily-ever-after—how can American political royalty and actual British royalty ever be together? How can they navigate being open about their sexualities (Alex is bisexual; Henry is gay) in their very public and very scrutinized roles? Alex and Henry must decide if they’ll risk their futures, their families, and their careers to take a chance on happiness. Although the story’s premise might be a fantasy—it takes place in a world in which a divorced-mom Texan Democrat won the 2016 election—the emotions are all real. The love affair between Alex and Henry is intense and romantic, made all the more so by the inclusion of their poetic emails that manage to be both funny and steamy. McQuiston’s strength is in dialogue; her characters speak in hilarious rapid-fire bursts with plenty of “likes,” “ums,” creative punctuation, and pop-culture references, sounding like smarter, funnier versions of real people. Although Alex and Henry’s relationship is the heart of the story, their friends and family members are all rich, well-drawn characters, and their respective worlds feel both realistic and larger-than-life.

A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

Pub Date: June 4, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-31677-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Review Posted Online: March 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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