A book that will appeal to the author's many fans.

A DEEPER LOVE INSIDE

THE PORSCHE SANTIAGA STORY

A novel that reads more like a memoir than fiction.

The narrator talks the authentic talk of tough girls in the hood, although she continually protests that she “comes from money” and attaches inordinate significance to trivial fashion items like bags and boots. After her parents are arrested, this precocious 10-year-old girl is “kidnapped” by social services. When she takes offense at a remark made by a social worker about her mother, she stabs the woman in the neck with a sharpened No. 2 pencil in the neck and is thereafter incarcerated in a juvenile detention facility, where she meets and trades life stories with other inmates. All of the stories are horrific, some in predictable, stereotypical ways, some so idiosyncratic they could be based on that proverbial truth that is stranger than fiction. Although she is much younger than the others, she is recruited into a clique called The Diamond Needles by an older white girl, and together, they later escape and go to live on an Indian reservation with a woman the girl knows. The novel takes the reader into the moment-to-moment, day-to-day life of Porsche Santiaga from early childhood to young womanhood, a life of dancing, yearning for her family and mourning for her momma; a life of seeking and eventually discovering love.  

A book that will appeal to the author's many fans.

Pub Date: Jan. 29, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4391-6531-7

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Emily Bestler/Atria

Review Posted Online: Nov. 19, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2012

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Nothing original, but in Hilderbrand’s hands it’s easy to get lost in the story.

BAREFOOT

Privileged 30-somethings hide from their woes in Nantucket.

Hilderbrand’s saga follows the lives of Melanie, Brenda and Vicki. Vicki, alpha mom and perfect wife, is battling late-stage lung cancer and, in an uncharacteristically flaky moment, opts for chemotherapy at the beach. Vicki shares ownership of a tiny Nantucket cottage with her younger sister Brenda. Brenda, a literature professor, tags along for the summer, partly out of familial duty, partly because she’s fleeing the fallout from her illicit affair with a student. As for Melanie, she gets a last minute invite from Vicki, after Melanie confides that Melanie’s husband is having an affair. Between Melanie and Brenda, Vicki feels her two young boys should have adequate supervision, but a disastrous first day on the island forces the trio to source some outside help. Enter Josh, the adorable and affable local who is hired to tend to the boys. On break from college, Josh learns about the pitfalls of mature love as he falls for the beauties in the snug abode. Josh likes beer, analysis-free relationships and hot older women. In a word, he’s believable. In addition to a healthy dose of testosterone, the novel is balanced by powerful descriptions of Vicki’s bond with her two boys. Emotions run high as she prepares for death.

Nothing original, but in Hilderbrand’s hands it’s easy to get lost in the story.

Pub Date: July 2, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-316-01858-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2007

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More about grief and tragedy than romance.

FRIENDS FOREVER

Five friends meet on their first day of kindergarten at the exclusive Atwood School and remain lifelong friends through tragedy and triumph.

When Gabby, Billy, Izzie, Andy and Sean meet in the toy kitchen of the kindergarten classroom on their first day of school, no one can know how strong the group’s friendship will remain. Despite their different personalities and interests, the five grow up together and become even closer as they come into their own talents and life paths. But tragedy will strike and strike again. Family troubles, abusive parents, drugs, alcohol, stress, grief and even random bad luck will put pressure on each of them individually and as a group. Known for her emotional romances, Steel makes a bit of a departure with this effort that follows a group of friends through young adulthood. But even as one tragedy after another befalls the friends, the impact of the events is blunted by a distant narrative style that lacks emotional intensity. 

More about grief and tragedy than romance.

Pub Date: July 24, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-385-34321-3

Page Count: 322

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: Nov. 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2012

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