Thursday, March 13, 2014

WWRW: The American Heiress and The Browne Twins

Whenever I fly, I like to have a great book with me to help me take my mind off the reality that I am SITTING IN A CHAIR 30,000 FEET ABOVE BELOVED TERRA FIRMA. This is so NOT my favorite place to be, but I've found myself in this position more and more, as my family has spread out across the country.

For plane trips I always try to find a book that is sure to get me hooked and engrossed,  a "guilty pleasure"-type novel.  Don't get me wrong here; when I say that, I don't mean racy or R-rated or anything.  I just mean a novel that I can read with absolutely no plan to rate or review it afterward.  I've been doing a lot of Amazon and Goodreads reviews lately, which I really like to do, to help my fellow Christian/Catholic authors promote their works; but when I read a book knowing that I'm going to review it, I probably don't enjoy the process of reading it as much as I should because I almost feel like I've got a big homework assignment due at the end.  (Maybe someday I'll get better at writing reviews and the task won't seem as daunting; but I'm still a greenhorn.)

Anyway, the novel I chose for my most recent flights (out to CO with my husband, to babysit for our twin granddaughters for five days so that their parents--and baby sister--could take a trip to the Midwest to go house-hunting) is The American Heiress. Here's the endorsement blurb on the cover that convinced me I'd found the perfect book to use as a security blanket on this latest airplane trip: "Anyone suffering Downton Abbey withdrawal symptoms (who isn't?) will find an instant tonic in Daisy Goodwin’s The American Heiress."   Bingo!  Any book that promised to resonate with a Downton Abbey fanatic sounded like just the ticket for me.  Set in the late 1800's, Daisy Goodwin's debut novel tells the story of a beautiful young girl named Cora (what a coincidence!), an uber-wealthy debutante from Newport whose social climbing mother wants her to go to England and marry someone with a title.  Ooh, just what the doctor ordered to offset my chronic fear of flying!  I thought I could get a good start on the book on the plane rides, and then after we tucked the twins into bed each night this week, I could read relax on the couch with a nighttime cup of coffee and read a couple of chapters before turning in myself.  Yes, this delicious, best-selling period novel is what I was going to be reading this Wednesday, folks.
Excuse me while I have a good laugh!!  I got 100 pages into The American Heiress on the way out here, but since then, I haven't read more than about 50 words.  So The American Heiress is really what I'm NOT reading Wednesday.  Because as adorable as my little 2-and-a-half-year-old-granddaughters are, and as fun as trips to the zoo (to feed lettuce and crackers to the giraffes) and to the pond (to feed bread to the ducks and geese) have been, Grammy falls into bed every night completely spent and wiped out--too tired, even, to read.  Now I know why I used to mostly resort to short magazine articles rather than the long novels I would have preferred during the years that my sons were little.  I was tired.  Even though I was a lot younger then, I was TIRED.
Before I move on, doesn't the picture on the cover of this book I'm not reading Wednesday remind you of that artsy photo I took of my newest daughter-in-law, Braveheart, as she was getting ready on her wedding day last month?  I posted it before, but here it is again.

Anyway--if I'm not reading The American Heiress, as planned, then what am I reading, you ask?

Well, I'm reading what these two pint-sized duck feeders want me to read to them, that's what!
And that includes a series of board books about the Browne Twins, by Patricia Frechtman.

I especially like the one about the Browne twins' first birthday, because it ends by saying that the best present of all is the news that the their mommy and daddy are expecting a new baby.  That would make the Browne family very similar in makeup to our son's family, as his twins are 21 months older than their little sister.  I love it that the Brownes are open to accepting the gift of new life, in spite of how busy they are as parents to 1-year-old twins.  That's a mindset our modern world could use a little more of.
Before I sign off, I want to thank Jessica over at Housewifespice for giving my novel Finding Grace a nice shout-out on her WWRW post today.  You might want to head on over there to see what she--and other book-loving bloggers--are reading today. 

(And just a little reminder about the giveaway here at String of Pearls: leave me a comment on any post from now until March 24, and you could win one of 7 signed copies of Finding Grace.)


  1. I love that photo of braveheart, it is so similar to the book!

    1. I know. Here I said before that I thought it would make a good book cover...and obviously, it would!

  2. I have to edit my post to send people here for your giveaway! I didn't want to give away my inscribed copy. Thanks again for that. So the first 100 pages, were they good?

    1. I probably didn't enjoy the first 100 pages the way I should have, for two reasons: I slept off and on (thanks to my in-flight friend, Benadryl), and I had to keep going back to look things up; and it was also mentioned early on that the main male character was a Catholic, and it looked like the book was going to be disparaging about Catholicism. But I've been surprised by how much I've liked it, and how our Faith has been treated respectfully. There are passionate scenes, but they aren't so detail-filled that they're off-putting.

      And here I said I was happy that I didn't have a "homework assignment" to do after reading this book...and I am probably going to try to do at least a short review of it.