Native American spirits haunt the novel, but unfortunately so do too many coincidences to allow the reader to suspend belief.



In Ruby’s debut novel, set around Canandaigua, N.Y., a young man returns to his deceased parents’ lakeside cabin after a seven-year absence and becomes involved in the search for a missing woman and the truth about his past. 

Teacher Grant Shongo, 33, returns to his parents’ cabin to pull himself together after his wife Susanna leaves him, claiming he has never fully committed to her. Susanna is not wrong. Grant is still haunted by memories of Echo, the sweetheart he has not seen for 15 years, since they made love and then broke up over a misunderstanding shortly before she left for college. Grant’s doctor father Ben was of Seneca Indian descent; when Grant befriends and heals a dog-wolf hybrid, the spiritual healing powers Grant inherited from Ben become obvious. Eventually Grant realizes his father was really the semi-mythical Indian chief Two Bears. But first Echo shows up to care for the ailing, elderly cousin who raised her in Canandaigua after she was orphaned. The love between Echo and Grant resurfaces, although both are frightened to express their true feelings. Meanwhile, 21-year-old Melanie Ellis has gone missing. One night when she was nine, Melanie, along with eight-year-old sister Maya and seven-year-old brother Luke, took Ben's canoe out on the lake without asking; a storm came and Luke drowned, although the sisters’ memories of the details of the event remain hazy. Soon after, Melanie’s mother and abusive father divorced. Maya is now in a mental hospital. Addicted to drugs and dangerous behavior, Melanie had been putting her life together before her disappearance, in love and raising a child with African-American Lion, a recovering addict from California. After Grant saves Lion when he goes off the wagon, he becomes involved in Grant’s search for Melanie, whom readers already know has been abducted by her father, who holds her in Two Bears’ Cave.

Native American spirits haunt the novel, but unfortunately so do too many coincidences to allow the reader to suspend belief.

Pub Date: July 20, 2010

ISBN: 978-0-06-189864-8

Page Count: 368

Publisher: Avon/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: June 3, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2010

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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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Complications abound in this well-crafted, light holiday romance.


Talented baker Polly Waterford doesn’t know what to do when her best friend, Kerensa, swears her to secrecy. Kerensa’s drunken one-night stand may jeopardize not only her pregnancy, but also her marriage, not to mention Polly’s engagement to Huckle.

Fans of Colgan's (The Café by the Sea, 2017, etc.) Mount Polbearne stories will delight—and new fans will find an easy, charming entry into the saga—as Polly, Huckle, and Neil (the puffin) return for the Christmas season. Having survived the dissolution of her graphic design business, Polly is now happily ensconced with Huckle, whose honey business is not yet thriving, in the historic lighthouse they bought in the sweet Cornish village (practically an island) whose only road to civilization is submerged under the sea twice each day. As the yuletide season approaches, however, Polly must face a bewildering number of obstacles. Is she ready to marry Huckle? Is she ready to start a family? How can she know when her own father abandoned her before she was even born? How can she give up an entire day’s profits to the Mount Polbearne Christmas fair? How can she save the endangered puffin sanctuary? How will she ever bake enough for the fair plus cater a huge holiday party for Kerensa and her fabulously wealthy husband, Reuben? And how will Kerensa ever survive Reuben’s wrath if the baby turns out not to be his but some 6-foot-4 Brazilian man’s? Supported by the ever faithful Huckle and Neil's endearing eeps, Polly carries on from the cozy bed in the icy lighthouse, trailing flour and knishes wherever she goes. Keeping secrets, pleasing everyone, and balancing so many jobs keeps Polly busy—that is, until a massive winter storm threatens everything.

Complications abound in this well-crafted, light holiday romance.

Pub Date: Oct. 10, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-06-266299-6

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Morrow/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: July 17, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2017

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