The Bookseller's Secret

August 17, 2021


The Bookseller's Secret
By: Michelle Gable
Genre: Historical Fiction

In 1942, London, Nancy Mitford is worried about more than air raids and German spies. Still recovering from a devastating loss, the once sparkling Bright Young Thing is estranged from her husband, her allowance has been cut, and she’s given up her writing career. On top of this, her five beautiful but infamous sisters continue making headlines with their controversial politics.

Eager for distraction and desperate for income, Nancy jumps at the chance to manage the Heywood Hill bookshop while the owner is away at war. Between the shop’s brisk business and the literary salons she hosts for her eccentric friends, Nancy’s life seems on the upswing. But when a mysterious French officer insists that she has a story to tell, Nancy must decide if picking up the pen again and revealing all is worth the price she might be forced to pay.

Eighty years later, Heywood Hill is abuzz with the hunt for a lost wartime manuscript written by Nancy Mitford. For one woman desperately in need of a change, the search will reveal not only a new side to Nancy, but an even more surprising link between the past and present… --

Once again, Michelle Gable has crafted an engrossing story that you love watching unfold. She gives you two lead characters, Nancy and Katie, who area as different as they are similar. Both are having to pick up the pieces when life took a detour. Both are learning to navigate their lives on their own terms, all while learning what those terms are. Michelle created Katie with her own distinctive personality, and she captures Nancy just as she was described by people who knew her. 

I loved Nancy!! She was spunky, sassy and marched to the beat of her own drum. She wasn't afraid to live life according to her rules- not society's. From her extra-marital relationships to the friends she surrounded herself with. I loved her! She was the breath of fresh air her world needed. I loved reading about her friends and family. Her sisters were flawed, but fun to read about. Nancy's group of close friends were a blast to get to know!! 

Katie's story has her picking herself up after her life seemingly falls apart. Her relationship is over and she's caused a big scene at the family Thanksgiving. Accepting her best friend, JoJo's, invitation to stay with her in London is just what she needs. I warn you: Katie's has a rather foul mouth. She's very familiar with curse words and not afraid to use them. But, that aside, I enjoyed reading her discover more about her beloved author. A chance trip to the G. Heywood Hill Bookshop brings more than just future friends to her life- it gives her a treasure to help hunt for. Could there be an unpublished memoir left by her beloved author?! She joins forces with Simon, the grandson of someone who was connected to Nancy, to find it. Not only do they navigate the past, but they get to know one another as they look for the memoir.

While The Bookseller's Secret isn't a keep you on the edge of your seat novel, it's one you enjoy reading. This book was like a pile of puzzle pieces that slowly revealed the picture with each chapter. It was like a cozy blanket and hot chocolate on a rainy day. You just loved spending time getting to know the characters- main as well as supportive. You just loved seeing what each chapter revealed. You were sad to leave the group when you read the last line, but you were so glad you met them. 

Thank you, Michelle, for another great read. Thank you for creating an inviting world for the reader to crawl into. Thank you for being the gifted writer you are to bring all these characters to life. I look forward to our next adventure!

Stories to Tell

August 1, 2021


Stories to Tell
by: Richard Marx

For most of the people who knew and loved singer, songwriter & performer, Richard Marx, he showed up on our radar in the late 1980s. What we wouldn't know was that he had already made a name for himself in the music industry before that. In his book, Stories to Tell, Richard tells you how his career came to be. You'll get to hear about the successes he had before he ever had a record deal. He gives you a front row seat to him unpacking his professional life- with a little of his personal life thrown in. You won't believe the career he's had!!

I was one of the many listeners of the radio that heard Richard Marx's tunes play. While I wasn't a die hard fan who bought all the albums or went to the concerts, I did enjoy listening to his music whenever I heard it on the radio. I was among the many who watched his videos on MTV. In fact, my first broken heart had his song "Right Here Waiting" in the background. He was a big part of the music scene in the late 80s. But, like many others, I had no clue just how talented he was. I had no clue that he had a career in the music industry before we ever heard a word from him. Stories to Tell was such an eye opening read  that showed just how widespread his talent was and is.

Did you know he was nominated for a Grammy before he ever had a record deal? I didn't?! Did you know that he's worked with some of the biggest names in music- long before he had a record deal? (think Lionel Richie, Kenny Rogers, Madonna- just to name a few.) I didn't! You will learn who got him started, who all he worked with before and after his own record deal, and the career achievements he garnered before the mass majority knew who he was.

Richard Marx will tell you stories of life on the road, stories behind his biggest hits, and why you should never EVER let the Chinese Mafia have anything to do with financing a part of your tour. And you will love every story he has to tell you. He takes you behind the curtain on his career and it's a fascinating read. I couldn't put it down.


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