The Ripper’s Wife

From  Andrea Kalinowski
Author:  Brandy Purdy
Title:  The Ripper’s Wife

Brandy Purdy’s newest release is The Ripper’s Wife. It offered a new perspective, fictional though it was, of how Jack the Ripper came to be. James Maybrick and Florence Chandler meet upon the ocean-liner The Baltic and it is a whirlwind romance of a week’s duration. They both have concealed aspects of their true nature from each other and this concealment leads to their ultimate downfall, both individually and as a married couple. Florence, or Florie as she is affectionately known, is a flirt and a coquette. She needs to be first in everyone’s affections. James Maybrick is the middle son and forever in competition with his eldest brother, Michael. James’ first passions are arsenic and strychnine. His second passion is visiting physicians’ offices to diagnose his many ailments, mainly imagined. He is a hypochondriac of the first order. The downfall begins when James’ “wife” comes to the door and speaks with Florie beseeching her to ask James to resume his payments for her and their five children.

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The Man You’ll Marry

From  Elaine Pasquali

Title:  The Man You’ll Marry

Author:  Debbie Macomber

A “magical” wedding dress is the focus of the novel.  Family myth holds that whoever is in possession of the dress will marry the first man she sees.  Thus, the dress is passed on from aunt to niece to niece’s friend, and finally friend’s mother.  The reader witnesses the ensuing romances and romantic struggles.  A fast reading novel that could readily be adapted for a Hallmark Saturday night television show.  The Man You’ll Marry provides an enjoyable,  light change of pace and is analogous to palate cleansing sherbet enjoyed at the end of a heavy meal.

Next life might be kinder

From Catherine Given

Author:  Howard Norman

Title:   Next life might be kinder  

Some books are easy – they give us free choice to dip into their pages — others hold us captive. This one’s hold was surprisingly fierce. In Next Life Might Be Kinder, Sam, a newly married writer/birdwatcher and Elizabeth, his gentle wife who is writing her dissertation, set up housekeeping in an apartment in an old Halifax hotel.

Howard recounts their dreamy, Zen-like existence, enlivened once a week by dance lessons, shattered to smithereens by Elizabeth’s murder. Norman depicts Sam’s devastation in a spell-binding, no-frills, stream-of-consciousness style.

Peter, an egomaniacal filmmaker, breaks through Sam’s numbing grief when he makes him an offer for the couple’s tragic story – one Sam feels he can’t refuse. Violation of Sam’s privacy and desecration of his memories of Elizabeth ensue, putting Sam’s ethics and his patience with Peter, to the test.

 

Mrs. Hemingway : a novel

From Catherine Given
Author:  Naomi Wood
Title:  Mrs. Hemingway : a novel
A lively account of Ernest Hemingway’s infatuation addiction, which led him to marry four times, Mrs. Hemingway features colorful settings from Paris to Cuba, inhabited by the “Lost Generation’s” Sara and Gerald Murphy, Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Wood’s ear for dialogue rings exceptionally true, in explosive interactions among the impossible yet magnetic Hemingway, his mistresses and soon-to-be-replaced wives. The four wives were formidable, with careers and driving passions of their own. In Mrs. Hemingway, Naomi Wood spotlights their strengths and weaknesses, detailing life as seen through their distinctive eyes in each of the narrative’s four parts. We may know the ending, but the dramatic contrast between the whirlwind that was Hemingway’s 1920’s experience, and the desperate hollowness of his final days in Idaho is stunning. This book may leave you yearning to learn more about each of these remarkable women!

Pamela

From Andrea Kalinowski
Author:  Samuel Richardson
Pamela
Pamela is the story of a virtuous young woman in household employ. The young master is enamored of her charms and beseeches her to allow him her favors. She resists him mightily and so she wins his hand in marriage. Shamela by Henry Fielding is his satirical response to Richardson’s virtuous protagonist. He did not believe that Richardson’s character truly acted in that fashion and so he turned everything Richardson had penned on its head. Fielding made the main character a loose woman and the opposite of every virtue Richardson had given Pamela was contained in Shamela. Shamela was a scheming, devious woman who ensnared her master. Pamela embodied all that was good in womankind and Shamela was all the vices in womankind.  As entertaining a read then, as it is today.

Still Mr.and Mrs.

From  Elaine Pasquali
 Still Mr.and Mrs.
Author:  Mary McBride
 A delightful mystery that incorporates an attempt on the life of the mother of the President of the United States and an estranged couple of married Secret Service agents.  Fast moving and funny, it’s difficult to put down and leaves you wanting more.