In Samantha’s Mailbox:
Author: Rachael O’Bryan
Received: Via CLP Blog Tours
Synopsis: In Unlocked The main character Rebecca takes the reader on a journey through a collection of short stories concerning nine guys she met while being a tutor in college for the football team. She recounts her struggles with love, friendship, self-confidence, trust, acceptance, and heartache. The stories indicate how people and relationships can really shape a person’s life.
The story is told in first person and Rebecca introduces herself to the reader in the beginning by providing some background about herself. Delving into the actual stories, the first story of the book, “The Costly Answer” finds Rebecca wondering if her answer to one question asked by her crush cost her a chance at a relationship after she spots him a few years later in a different city. In the second story, “He Better Not Touch My Doughnuts,” she shares her experiences dealing with trust in a friendship. In the third story, “Big Brother (Sometimes),” Rebecca shares her love for her quasi-big brother, but also admits that she could never truly let go of any doubts surrounding their friendship. In the following story, “The Truth Does Set You Free,” Rebecca discusses her relationship with a guy she had a crush on for quite awhile until she finally gives their friendship an honest review. The next story, “A Necessary Goodbye,” discusses naturally letting a friendship go. That story is followed by “The Perfect Imperfect Person to Love,” where Rebecca shares her deep love and commitment to a friend she fell for and her struggle to let go. “The Best Player on the Team,” is a story about Rebecca’s friendship with one of the football players that she admired on and off the field. Next is the story, “Words Can Hurt,” which discusses the pain of being there for someone and then realizing he may never have appreciated her. And finally, “Good Guys Always Finish Last” is a story where Rebecca realizes that there are decent guys out there, and sometimes they get overlooked.
Author: Lauren Clark
Received: Via CLP Blog Tours
Synopsis: Travel writer Julia Sullivan lives life in fast-forward. She jet sets to Europe and the Caribbean with barely a moment to blink or sleep. But too many mishaps and missed deadlines have Julia on the verge of being fired.
With a stern warning, and unemployment looming, she’s offered one last chance to rescue her career. Julia embarks on an unlikely journey to the ‘Heart of Dixie’—Eufaula, Alabama—home to magnificent mansions, sweet tea, and the annual Pilgrimage.
Julia arrives, soon charmed by the lovely city and her handsome host, but her stay is marred by a shocking discovery. Can Julia’s story save her career, Eufaula, and the annual Pilgrimage?
Author: Caitlin Davies
Received: Unsolicited, Random House UK
Synopsis: The first time Annie Sweet sees 43 Stanley Road, the Victorian house is so perfect she almost feels as though it has chosen her. She longs to move in, but with her husband increasingly distant, and her daughter wrapped up in her friends, Annie is left alone to mull over the past. Soon she becomes consumed by the house and everyone who has lived there before her, especially a young chorus girl called Lily Painter. As Annie delves further into Lily’s past she discovers a dark episode of two notorious baby farmers. Until Annie solves the mystery at the heart of the scandal, the ghost of Lily Painter will never be able to rest.
In Sara’s Mailbox:
Author: Jillian Medoff
Received: Amy @KMSPR
Synopsis: Which child would you save? A decision no parent can even fathom.
Eliot Gordon would do anything for her family. A 38-year-old working mother, she lives an ordinary but fulfilling life in suburban Atlanta with her partner, Grant Delaney, and their three daughters. The two older girls are actually Eliot’s stepdaughters, a distinction she is reluctant to make as she valiantly attempts to maintain a safe, happy household . . .
Then Finn Montgomery, Eliot’s long-lost first love, appears, triggering a shocking chain of events that culminates in a split-second decision that will haunt her beloved family forever. How Eliot survives-and what she loses in the process-is a story that will resonate with anyone who has ever loved a child. With hilarious honesty, wrenching depth, and a knockout twist, I COULDN’T LOVE YOU MORE illuminates the unbreakable bonds of family and reveals the lengths we’ll go to save each other, even as we can’t save ourselves.