Great Summer Reads:The Bride Quartet 2 and3 Tuesday, Jul 27 2010 

Auntie M has been away doing readings/signings for The Blue Virgin (available at http://www.bridlepathpress.com in case you haven’t read it yet!) But don’t think for one moment I’ve stopped reading.  Here’s a twofer for you:

Prolific Nora Roberts Bride Quartet was mentioned here once before when I reviewed the first book, Vision in White. The books revolve around the story of four childhood friends, Parker, Emma, Laurel and Mac, the founders of Vows, one of Connecticut’s most popular and successful wedding planning companies. In the first book, photographer Mac finds her true love.

Book 2 in the series continues the story of the ups and downs of running weddings, showers and rehearsal dinners for everyone from Bridezilla to The Perfect Couple in Bed of Roses. This time the focus is on Emma, the florist of the pack and the true romantic. She yearns for a lifelong love affair with her man, if such a thing is possible.

Emma loves her job. She creates stunning floral pieces for any theme a bride wants, and often guides them in their decisions. She also keeps the grounds in bloom with the help of staff, and many of the weddings Vows plan take place at the mansion for that reason. Thin and attractive, she never has to look far to find a date, yet she’s yet to find the “one” who fits her romantic ideal.
The “one” is easily recognized by on, the ending assured. This is not a mystery, but a fun romance. Go with it.
You can read this in one hazy afternoon sitting on the beach. Pure brain candy.
Book 3 in the series is Savor the Moment, another delectable piece of romantic candy. This time baker Lauren is up for the spotlight.

Being the baker at Vows means Laurel creates extravagantly luscious tiers of cakes and other confections to end the events on a high note.  But as much as she enjoys working her frustrations out in dough, Lauren is the total opposite of the romantic Emma. She longs for a strong, intelligent beau, and has had a crush on Parker’s older brother, Delaney Brown, since high school.
Up until now, Delaney has been the big brother to all of the women, a notion Laurel would love to change. Her quick temper pushes her to make a move that ignites a spark with Delaney she can’t forget.  Again, you know the ending here. It’s the trip to the end that ripples with romance and while there are no surprises, there is great satisfaction in someone else’s happy ending.
For those of you looking for a mega-dose of romance to cool your days, try one of these sparklers.  They’re quick reads, maybe sitting on a beach with your toes in the sand. Roberts Book 4 will premiere in November, when Parker gets her man. But trust me, if you read the others, you’ll already know who her Mr. Right will be.

Summer’s Funniest: Sizzling Sixteen Friday, Jul 2 2010 

Janet Evanovich always makes me laugh out loud several times during my read, and Sizzling Sixteen is no exception.  This one had me reading several paragraphs out loud to Doc, who always nods and smiles at my laughter.

https://i2.wp.com/www.evanovich.com/content/downloads/SizzlingSixteenNovelpg_0/SizzlingSixteenNovelpg.jpg

Stephanie Plum’s major assignment this time around is trying to raise over $700,000 to secure the release of her kidnapped cousin Vinnie. Yes, the same Vinnie who is the owner of Vincent Plum Bail Bonds and her boss, although she personally loathes the man. His gambling debt to a mobster has set this whole caper in motion.

Helping Stephanie, as only she can, is file clerk Lula, she of the spandex outfits she squeezes her zaftig body into; and Connie, office manager, who decides to lend a hand getting Vinnie back. All three are more anxious to save their jobs than to save Vinnie, but since it boils down to the same thing, off they go.

Stephanie’s on-again, off-again romance with cop Joe Morelli is in an ‘off’ stage in this one, so sexy security expert Ranger ramps up the heat.  Of course, Stephanie still needs to find her usual collars to keep the business going, as the trio search for Vinnie.  There are encounters with a Jersey Turnpike toilet paper bandit and a drug dealer with a pet alligator named Mr. Jingles. Really.

And no Plum novel would be complete without a turn from Grandma Mazur, one of the funniest characters ever put on the page.

You can’t get better summer reading than putting on the sunblock and settling down with the fast read.  I’m waiting for Stephanie and company to be put on the big screen. Readers, who would play Stephanie, Lula, Joe and Ranger?

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