Saturday, July 25, 2015


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Destination: Travel up the west coast of California

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Synopsis: In the wake of a tragedy that tore her life down to the foundations, Dr. Alison McAdams has lost her way. So when she’s summoned to Napa to care for her ailing father, she’s not sure she has anything to offer him—or anyone else.
What Ali finds in Northern California wine country is a gift—an opportunity to rest, and distance from her painful memories. Most unexpectedly, she finds people who aren’t afraid of her grief or desperate for her to hurry up and move on.
As Ali becomes part of her father’s community, makes new friends of her own, and hears the stories of a generation who survived the Second World War, she begins to find hope again. In a quest to discover the truth about another woman’s lost love, she sets off on a journey across oceans and deep into history. And in making sense of that long-ago tragedy, Ali is able to put together the broken pieces of her heart and make new choices that are right for her.

My review: I LOVED this book!!  Ali, her father, and all the other characters are so realistically written. Ali's father isn't exactly a joy to be around, and he doesn't seem to appreciate her presence or concern. She wants to take him back to Arizona with her, but he wants to stay in California with his friends.

As Ali gets to know her father's friends in the retirement community, she finds herself developing a rather unusual friendship with Edie, an irritable and irritating woman in her nineties. She also finds herself attracted to Edie's nephew, Craig. 

Edie's story of her life in Germany in WWII pique's Ali's curiosity, and she impulsively plans a trip to Germany to fill in the missing pieces. What she learns, and what happens when she returns, help her to make some decisions in her own life.

This book has humor, adventure, history, and more--a little something for everyone.

My rating: Five stars

 photo 12693_zpslcupmqjf.jpgAbout the authorBorn in Visalia, California, I'm a small town girl at heart. I love central California's golden foothills, oak trees, and the miles of farmland. In my mind, there's nothing sweeter in the world than the heady fragrance of orange blossoms on a sultry summer night.

As a little girl I spent hours on my bed, staring out the window, dreaming of far off places, fearless knights, and happy-ever-after endings. In my imagination I was never the geeky bookworm with the thick coke-bottle glasses, but a princess, a magical fairy, a Joan-of-Arc crusader.

My parents fed my imagination by taking our family to Europe for a year when I was thirteen. The year away changed me (I wasn't a geek for once!) and overseas I discovered a huge and wonderful world with different cultures and customs. I loved everything about Europe, but felt especially passionate about Italy and those gorgeous Italian men (no wonder my first very Presents hero was Italian).

I confess, after that incredible year in Europe, the travel bug bit, and bit hard. I spent much of my high school and college years abroad, studying in South Africa, Japan and Ireland. South Africa remains a country of my heart, the people, the land and politics complex and heart-wrenching.

After my years of traveling and studying I had to settle down and earn a living. With my Bachelors degree from UCLA in American Studies, a program that combines American literature and American history, I've worked in sales and marketing, as well as a director of a non-profit foundation. Later I earned my Masters in Writing from the University of San Francisco and taught jr. high and high school English.

I now live in Seattle and Hawaii with my three sons. I never mind a rainy day, either, because that's when I sit at my desk and write stories about far-away places, fascinating people, and most importantly of all, love. I like a story with a happy ending. We all do. 

1 comment:

Diane Coto said...

Sounds like one of those stories that stay with you a while after you finish it. :)
@dino0726 from 
FictionZeal - Impartial, Straighforward Fiction Book Reviews