by Jennifer Donnelly ‧ RELEASE DATE: Oct. 1, 2002
Bland, despite the gruesome-deaths quotient.
A bright, plucky, and (of course) beautiful Cockney girl escapes poverty and violence in the Whitechapel neighborhood of Victorian-era London to make her fortune in New York City.
In Donnelly’s sprawling debut, the heroine is heroic, the villains villainous (and rich), and the heroine’s love interests in need of a strong woman like her to keep them out of trouble. Seventeen-year-old Fiona Finnegan’s plans to open a shop with her childhood sweetheart Joe are dashed when Joe succumbs to the wiles of his boss’s daughter and ends up in a shotgun wedding. Fiona’s distress is compounded by her father’s accidental death at the Burton Tea Company, where he was organizing a union, her mother’s murder by Jack the Ripper, and her brother’s drowning. When Fiona overhears William Burton, the cold-eyed, knife-wielding owner of Burton Tea, brag that he had her father murdered, she realizes her own life is in danger and flees to America. Befriended en route by a young art collector named Nick, Fiona is put off by neither his syphilis nor his homosexuality, an open-mindedness that rings false in the Victorian setting. Taking over her alcoholic uncle’s failing business, Fiona becomes a successful grocer, and, although she still pines for Joe, she enjoys being wooed by a charming, prominent financier. Then Nick faces a homophobic scandal instigated by her wealthy suitor’s son. Unaware that Joe, whose marriage ended when his wife miscarried, is still searching for her, Fiona marries Nick to save his reputation and settles into what turns into a happy if unconventional marriage. While amassing a fortune in the tea and grocery trade, Fiona secretly plans to wreak revenge on Burton. After Nick’s death and extensive plotting, she returns to London, reunites with Joe, and causes Burton financial ruin, which brings out his murderous side. Or perhaps he was more murderous all along than in anyone’s worst suspicions.Bland, despite the gruesome-deaths quotient.
Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2002
Page Count: 560
Publisher: Dunne/St. Martin's
Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2002
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by Colleen Hoover ‧ RELEASE DATE: Aug. 2, 2016
Packed with riveting drama and painful truths, this book powerfully illustrates the devastation of abuse—and the strength of...
Awards & Accolades
New York Times Bestseller
Hoover’s (November 9, 2015, etc.) latest tackles the difficult subject of domestic violence with romantic tenderness and emotional heft.
At first glance, the couple is edgy but cute: Lily Bloom runs a flower shop for people who hate flowers; Ryle Kincaid is a surgeon who says he never wants to get married or have kids. They meet on a rooftop in Boston on the night Ryle loses a patient and Lily attends her abusive father’s funeral. The provocative opening takes a dark turn when Lily receives a warning about Ryle’s intentions from his sister, who becomes Lily’s employee and close friend. Lily swears she’ll never end up in another abusive home, but when Ryle starts to show all the same warning signs that her mother ignored, Lily learns just how hard it is to say goodbye. When Ryle is not in the throes of a jealous rage, his redeeming qualities return, and Lily can justify his behavior: “I think we needed what happened on the stairwell to happen so that I would know his past and we’d be able to work on it together,” she tells herself. Lily marries Ryle hoping the good will outweigh the bad, and the mother-daughter dynamics evolve beautifully as Lily reflects on her childhood with fresh eyes. Diary entries fancifully addressed to TV host Ellen DeGeneres serve as flashbacks to Lily’s teenage years, when she met her first love, Atlas Corrigan, a homeless boy she found squatting in a neighbor’s house. When Atlas turns up in Boston, now a successful chef, he begs Lily to leave Ryle. Despite the better option right in front of her, an unexpected complication forces Lily to cut ties with Atlas, confront Ryle, and try to end the cycle of abuse before it’s too late. The relationships are portrayed with compassion and honesty, and the author’s note at the end that explains Hoover’s personal connection to the subject matter is a must-read.Packed with riveting drama and painful truths, this book powerfully illustrates the devastation of abuse—and the strength of the survivors.
Pub Date: Aug. 2, 2016
Page Count: 320
Review Posted Online: May 30, 2016
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2016
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by Christina Lauren ‧ RELEASE DATE: April 10, 2018
With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.
Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.
Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.
Pub Date: April 10, 2018
Page Count: 416
Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster
Review Posted Online: Jan. 22, 2018
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018
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