The Kennedy curse struck early and hard, with Kathleen “Kick” Kennedy. Kick was the fourth child and favorite daughter of her father Joe. At 24, Kick married Billy Hartington, future Duke of Devonshire, very much against her family’s wishes. Billy was a Protestant, and Kick – Irish Catholic. Her brother Joe was the only family member to attend her wedding. But marital bliss was short lived when Billy was killed in action in France, shortly after D-Day. Kick later began an affair with Earl Peter Wentworth Fitzwilliam, also a Protestant, married man, gambler and drinker. She was on her way to Cannes with Peter when he insisted the plane take off in turbulent weather. The plane crashed and both Kick and Peter were killed. Her father identified her remains, and she was buried in England.
Barbara Leaming writes a very detailed account of the glamour, wealth and tragedy that seems to follow the Kennedy family.
With March Madness just round the corner, you might want to pick up Cookie Johnson’s biography, Believing in Magic. Cookie tells of her on-again, off again, relationship with local MSU hero, Earvin “Magic” Johnson. Cookie reveals her fears, heartache and anger when her husband of 45 days tells her, and the world that he is HIV positive. Throughout their marriage of ups and downs, Cookie is resilient. Magic introduces her to a child from a previous relationship – Andre, and their own child announces that he is gay. Yet Cookie manages to rise to every occasion with amazing strength and solidity, advocate for ways to fight disease and establish a line of premium denim clothing. Her story is well written, and you will feel the happiness and sorrow that make up “Cookie”.
P.S. Her given name is Earletha.
Now that the election is over, and a new president is about to be inaugurated, you may find Kate Anderson Brower’s, The Residence: Inside the Private World of the White House, very interesting. This book offers behind the scene interviews with White House staff members, both past and present. Employees offer tantalizing descriptions of the first families and their relationships with them, describing how they accommodate and fulfill every need for those called to our highest office.
These employees are held to near impossible standards of privacy, and Brower emphasizes that longevity and continued discretion of these individuals indicates an unstoppable devotion to this institution. The staff describe tragic events in history that changed us all, but they also provide fascinating insight into those responsible for decision-making during those tragedies.
You may find yourself understanding and empathizing with the enormity of those charged with representing us all despite our own political views or assumptions.
If you haven’t read any of Linda Castillo’s Amish series, you are really missing out. In Among the Wicked, Chief of Police Kate Burkholder, is asked to go under cover as an Amish widow, in upstate New York. Kate was raised Amish, but left after a traumatic incident, and the sheriff feels that Kate can infiltrate the Amish community in his jurisdiction. A teenage girl is found dead and there are rumors of child abuse.The sheriff fears foul play, and the new Bishop is high on his guilty radar. This is no easy assignment, and Kate asks a few too many questions and finds herself in extreme danger. With no one to talk to or anyone to help, Kate must handle the situation with only her wits. What she uncovers will surprise you, and keep you reading late into the night. Castillo does not disappoint in her latest Amish mystery.
In bestselling author Robyn Carr’s latest novel, Emma and Riley are childhood friends through high school. Things fall apart when Emma goes off to college and leaves Riley behind with Jock, Emma’s boyfriend.
Fast forward several years. Emma is reeling from the betrayal of her husband and subsequent suicide. Emma, with nothing to her name, comes home. Riley now owns a very successful cleaning business, and reluctantly hires Emma. But Emma can’t escape her past and has a difficult time, until she re-unites with Adam, Riley’s brother. Let’s just say this makes for an uncomfortable family dynamic.
For a romance novel, this book packs a little of everything between the covers. Pain, loyalty, friendship, hardship and of course – love.
The mother and daughter team of P.J. Tracy is at it again with their latest novel, The Sixth Idea. In 1957, a group of top notch engineers and scientists combine their skills and develop a hydrogen bomb that destroys only infrastructure, not lives. In present day Minneapolis, detectives Magozzi and Rolseth are finding dead bodies everywhere, and also investigate a kidnapping. The only connection between the bodies and the kidnapping, is that they are descendants of the bomb inventors. Lydia Ascher, a remaining descendant finds two dead bodies in her basement, and upon questioning, tells the detectives of a website called the Sixth Idea. This website was designed to locate other descendants. So Magozzi and Rolseth call on the Monkeewrench team to help unravel the mystery. Each with their own unique talent, they seek to uncover a clever conspiracy in this combination detection-thriller. This is the seventh book in the great Monkeewrench series.
Apples don’t fall far from trees; like father, like son. These idioms hold true in Debbie Macomber’s new book, A Girl’s Guide to Moving On.
Dad Sean and son Jake liked to step outside their marital bounds. Sean dallied for thirty plus years and Jake for five. But the wives were much stronger together than as one, and both filed for divorce at the same time. Sean and Jake were unbelievably surprised and devastated, and stalled proceedings at every turn. But Leanne and Nichole drew inner strength from each other and started over in apartments in the same building, in a new town, with new faces, new opportunities and new love. Macomber writes an inspiring story about strength, friendship, hope and of course, love.