Friday, December 10, 2021

Book Review: The Magnificent Lives of Marjorie Post by Allison Pataki

 Book Review


The Magnificent Lives of Marjorie Post

Allison Pataki

 

Book Description:

Mrs. Post, the President and First Lady are here to see you. . . . So begins another average evening for Marjorie Merriweather Post. Presidents have come and gone, but she has hosted them all. Growing up in the modest farmlands of Battle Creek, Michigan, Marjorie was inspired by a few simple rules: always think for yourself, never take success for granted, and work hard—even when deemed American royalty, even while covered in imperial diamonds. Marjorie had an insatiable drive to live and love and to give more than she got. From crawling through Moscow warehouses to rescue the Tsar’s treasures to outrunning the Nazis in London, from serving the homeless of the Great Depression to entertaining Roosevelts, Kennedys, and Hollywood’s biggest stars, Marjorie Merriweather Post lived an epic life few could imagine.

Marjorie’s journey began gluing cereal boxes in her father’s barn as a young girl. No one could have predicted that C. W. Post’s Cereal Company would grow into the General Foods empire and reshape the American way of life, with Marjorie as its heiress and leading lady. Not content to stay in her prescribed roles of high-society wife, mother, and hostess, Marjorie dared to demand more, making history in the process. Before turning thirty she amassed millions, becoming the wealthiest woman in the United States. But it was her life-force, advocacy, passion, and adventurous spirit that led to her stunning legacy.
 
And yet Marjorie’s story, though full of beauty and grandeur, set in the palatial homes she built such as Mar-a-Lago, was equally marked by challenge and tumult. A wife four times over, Marjorie sought her happily-ever-after with the blue-blooded party boy who could not outrun his demons, the charismatic financier whose charm turned to betrayal, the international diplomat with a dark side, and the bon vivant whose shocking secrets would shake Marjorie and all of society. Marjorie did everything on a grand scale, especially when it came to love.

Bestselling and acclaimed author Allison Pataki has crafted an intimate portrait of a larger-than-life woman, a powerful story of one woman falling in love with her own voice and embracing her own power while shaping history in the process.

 

Random House Publishing

Publishing Date: February 15, 2022

Biographical Historical Fiction

 

Preorder Now:

Amazon Kindle

 

My 5-Star Review:

This amazing story grabbed me from the first paragraph. I had never heard of Marjorie Post before, but now I’m obsessed. She had an incredible life and also contributed so much to society. Author Allison Pataki weaves a strong story about Marjorie’s life, with such intimate details and descriptions that you feel you are right there. Every step of the way, I was surprised to learn something new about history. Marjorie was the daughter of Who? Marjorie’s daughter is her? Marjorie bought what from Russia? The details continued to fascinate me. Loved this story!

If you enjoy historical biographical fiction, this is the novel for you! I’m even planning a trip to see Marjorie’s house-turned-museum now because of the amazing things she owned. I won’t say what they are and ruin the story – but it sounds incredible.

 



About the Author:

Allison Pataki is the New York Times bestselling author of THE QUEEN'S FORTUNE, THE TRAITOR'S WIFE, THE ACCIDENTAL EMPRESS, SISI: EMPRESS ON HER OWN, WHERE THE LIGHT FALLS, as well as the nonfiction memoir BEAUTY IN THE BROKEN PLACES and two children's books, NELLY TAKES NEW YORK and POPPY TAKES PARIS. Allison’s novels have been translated into more than twenty languages. A former news writer and producer, Allison has written for The New York Times, ABC News, The Huffington Post, USA Today, Fox News and other outlets. She has appeared on The TODAY Show, Good Morning America, Fox & Friends, Good Day New York, Good Day Chicago and MSNBC’s Morning Joe.

 

Allison graduated Cum Laude from Yale University with a major in English and spent several years in journalism before switching to fiction writing. A member of The Historical Novel Society, Allison lives in New York with her husband and family. To learn more and connect with Allison, please visit www.AllisonPataki.com 

Monday, November 8, 2021

Book Review: City of Time and Magic by Paula Brackston

 Book Review


City of Time and Magic

Found Things Series, Book Four

Paula Brackston

 

Book Description:

Xanthe meets Brackston's most famous heroine, Elizabeth Hawksmith from The Witch's Daughter, in this crossover story with all the "historical detail, village charm, and twisty plotting" of the Found Things series (Publishers Weekly).


City of Time and Magic sees Xanthe face her greatest challenges yet. She must choose from three treasures that sing to her; a beautiful writing slope, a mourning brooch of heartbreaking detail, and a gorgeous gem-set hat pin. All call her, but the wrong one could take her on a mission other than that which she must address first, and the stakes could not be higher. While her earlier mission to Regency England had been a success, the journey home resulted in Liam being taken from her, spirited away to another time and place. Xanthe must follow the treasure that will take her to him if he is not to be lost forever.

Xanthe is certain that Mistress Flyte has Liam and determined to find them both. But when she discovers Lydia Flyte has been tracking the actions of the Visionary Society, a group of ruthless and unscrupulous Spinners who have been selling their talents to a club of wealthy clients, Xanthe realizes her work as a Spinner must come before her personal wishes. The Visionary Society is highly dangerous and directly opposed to the creed of the Spinners. Their actions could have disastrous consequences as they alter the authentic order of things and change the future. Xanthe knows she must take on the Society. It will require the skills of all her friends, old and new, to attempt such a thing, and not all of them will survive the confrontation that follows.

 

Releases November 23, 2021

Buy now:

Amazon Kindle


My 5-Star Review:

For a reader like me who has read all of Paula Brackston books, if you say you’re bringing in a character from another series, I’m there! Xanthe has defeated one evil time spinner but in the process, her dear friend Liam was pulled away from her into another time. Frantic to find him, she begins her search where she believes he must be – with her one-time friend, Mistress Flythe. What Xanthe doesn’t realize is she will need all of her strength as a Spinner and all her friends to help her fight evil once more in order to save Liam. And lucky for her, a very talented witch is on her side.

I love the way Ms. Brackston spins a story. The characters and scenery come alive in your mind. You don’t want to put down a Paula Brackston book once you’ve started it – so sit back, relax, and enjoy. I highly recommend this fourth book in the Found Things series as well as everything else she has written!

 


About the Author:

Paula Brackston lives in the historic city of Hereford on the Welsh border. She has an MA in Creative Writing from Lancaster University, and has been a Visiting Lecturer for the University of Wales, Newport. Before becoming a writer, Paula tried her hand at various career paths, with mixed success. These included working as a groom on a racing yard, a travel agent, a secretary, an English teacher, a script reader, and a goat herd. Everyone involved (particularly the goats) is very relieved that she has now found a job she is actually able to do properly.

In 2007 Paula was shortlisted in the Creme de la Crime search for new writers. In 2010 her book 'Nutters' (writing as PJ Davy) was shortlisted for the Mind Book Award. The following year she was selected by the BBC under their New Welsh Writers scheme. 'The Witch's Daughter' became a New York Times bestseller. Her books are translated into five languages and sold around the world.

Paula Brackston is always sharing interesting tidbits of her life and writing, so be sure to follow her on Facebook.

Thursday, November 4, 2021

Giveaway! $500 Black Friday Shopping Blitz! Enter Now!

 $500 Black Friday Shopping Blitz

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Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Book Review: The Book of Magic by Alice Hoffman

 Book Review


The Book of Magic 

(Practical Magic Series Book Four)

Alice Hoffman

 

 

Book Description:

Master storyteller Alice Hoffman brings us the conclusion of the Practical Magic series in a spellbinding and enchanting final Owens novel brimming with lyric beauty and vivid characters.


The Owens family has been cursed in matters of love for over three-hundred years but all of that is about to change. The novel begins in a library, the best place for a story to be conjured, when beloved aunt Jet Owens hears the deathwatch beetle and knows she has only seven days to live. Jet is not the only one in danger—the curse is already at work.

A frantic attempt to save a young man’s life spurs three generations of the Owens women, and one long-lost brother, to use their unusual gifts to break the curse as they travel from Paris to London to the English countryside where their ancestor Maria Owens first practiced the Unnamed Art. The younger generation discovers secrets that have been hidden from them in matters of both magic and love by Sally, their fiercely protective mother. As Kylie Owens uncovers the truth about who she is and what her own dark powers are, her aunt Franny comes to understand that she is ready to sacrifice everything for her family, and Sally Owens realizes that she is willing to give up everything for love.

The Book of Magic is a breathtaking conclusion that celebrates mothers and daughters, sisters and brothers, and anyone who has ever been in love


Release Date: October 12, 2021

Order now:

Amazon Kindle – Audiobook - Hardcover

 

My 5-Star Review:

Alice Hoffman has outdone herself with this last installment in the Practical Magic series. I am writing this review immediately after being completely charmed by The Book of Magic. To follow the Owens women throughout time (including the prequel that took us back to the beginning with Maria Owens) was a magical trip. There is no better word—magical! These books are not just stories of witches and their descendants. They are stories of a family lineage, powerful women, family connections, and most of all, love.

In The Book of Magic, Hoffman weaves words together that create vivid scenes you can’t help but picture in your mind as you read. We learn the fate of the Owens women, from Jet and Franny to Sally and Gillian and down to Antonia and Kylie—all the women we fell in love with in the first book and even the movie. We follow them as they travel across the ocean to attempt to do the one thing that will free all the women in their family—break the curse that has kept them from falling in love throughout the centuries. And as they are challenged along the way, sacrifices must be made, and acts of love so powerful they will bring you to tears.

I loved this last novel in the Practical Magic series. A must read for anyone who believes in the power of family and the magic it brings to your life.

 


About the Author:

Alice Hoffman is the author of thirty works of fiction, including Practical Magic, The Red Garden, The Dovekeepers and, most recently, The Museum of Extraordinary Things. She lives in Boston. Visit her website: www.alicehoffman.com

The Romance Reviews

The Romance Reviews