Love will define the choices of two girls born a century apart. Choices that will impact not only themselves, but the lives of those they love.
One act of desperation in a moment of fear.
Eulie, born into slavery, had suffered at the hands of cruel men. She was haunted by the heartbreaking choice she made.
Leela, the child of a marriage based on lies, is haunted by nightmares, and dreams she can’t remember. Bullied because of her stutter, she refuses to speak. More than anything, she wants to be like other teenage girls.
When Leela goes to live in her grandmother’s Ante Bellum mansion in the segregated South, she discovers a story inscribed within the beautiful old mural in her bedroom. Lonely, she becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to the artist. Digging into the past, she uncovers a secret so shocking, it upends everything she has ever believed. But when the past and present collide, the lives of those she loves are threatened.
Will the cost of revealing the truth about her family’s past be worth the price she will have to pay?
Mexican Gothic began as an intriguing mystery that eventually evolves into more of a horror story. Still, it was well written with interesting characters. The protagonist, Noemi Taboada is a strong willed society princess. Her cousin, Catalina, has married a mysterious and handsome man who lives on a mist filled mountain in a mansion steeped in gloom with a secretive family. Noemi travels there to find her cousin, Catalina, a shadow of the once happy girl. The only kind person, Francis, is the son of the husband, Virgil, a handsome man with extremely dark secrets. He is charming and at times, cruel. The head of the family, Howard, is a twisted man who leers at Noemi. He is pale and smells of a wasting decease. As Noemi searches for answers, she begins to have horrible nightmares. The walls of the mansion seep with mold and a golden glow. There is unspeakable evil in the mansion and the family who inhabits it. Francis tries to help. He’s falling for Noemi, but he is as bound to the mansion and its evils. This is not a novel for the squeamish, however, if you love twisted horror, this is the book for you.
This delightful Debut from Author, Claire Huston, hits all the right marks to keep the reader turning the pages. Our protagonist, Becky Watson, is a single mom with a two year old. She is juggling motherhood and a return to her work as a Life Coach. She’s gifted at keeping weddings on track, even though her clients are often the spoiled well-to-do in this upscale New England town. Through the sister of a handsome, reclusive artist who needs a reboot, Becky takes Charlie on as a client. She gets more than she bargained for. Charlie, who was once an acclaimed artist, hasn’t painted in years. He is grumpy and depressed because his wife left him years before. He isn’t over it. He hides out in his studio while his young daughter worries he’ll never be the father he once was. Becky, struggling with finances, needs this job so she promises more than she thinks she can deliver. Yet, dedicated life coach that she is, through trial and error, she manages to get Charlie back on track, even though while doing so she begins to fall for his off beat charm. At the same time, Charlie becomes enamored with the gallery curator, the beautiful Rachel, introduced to him by Becky. During the course of getting Charlie back on track, Becky and Charlie find they have more in common then previously thought. They become close friends. But will Charlie see beyond Rachel’s beauty to realize how important Becky has become to him? This heartwarming, contemporary novel keeps the reader engaged throughout. I loved all of the characters and the author’s deep understanding of what motivates each character. I highly recommend this wonderful novel.
I’d seen the name when I’d planned the route… though ‘planned’ may be stretching things a bit far; I had a vague idea and my companion had a map. From Kilpeck to Rhyader, somewhere near which we would find our hotel, there are perfectly good ‘A’ roads and the fifty mile trip should take no more than about an hour. But with a ‘B’ road that passes through something called Golden Valley, and through villages with names like Kingstone and Dorstone before leading you up a track called Arthur’s Stone Lane… well, the ‘A’ roads were never really an option. Especially when I’d seen ‘King Arthur’s Stone’ marked in telltale brown on the map.
Not that we had any idea what King Arthur’s Stone might be. “Probably just an erratic,” and if so, we would probably miss it. Such things are seldom signposted and one odd boulder in a field…
Author, Elizabeth Gauffreau, totally immerses the reader into a by gone time, a time when vaudeville shows captured the imagination of both young and old. It was also a time of innocence. It is 1924 in a rural town in Vermont where time seems to move at a snail’s pace. Or so it seems to Faby, a young girl on the cusp of adulthood. Newly graduated from high school, Faby is waiting for her life to begin. When a handsome young man, a hoofer in the vaudeville show that has entranced Faby, shows interest in her, Faby’s choice leads her into a life for which she is unprepared. Author, Gauffreau, tells Faby’s story with depth and poignancy. This novel is deeply researched and rich with details of life in the early part of the century. With the ease of a writer who knows her craft, the author immerses the reader not only into a bygone time, but into the mindset of a young girl grappling with the unexpected turn her life has taken. It is also a story of family and of the ties that bind.
Poignant and beautifully written, I highly recommend this remarkable novel.
I am very pleased to share that I was recently interviewed by Maggie Smith of the Women’s Fiction Writers Association for the podcast “Hear Us Roar.” I roar to Maggie about my debut novel Telling Sonny: what the book is about, the process of researching and writing it, and the road to publication.