Falling in love with your best friend is complicated. As much as you know this person, you also know that there is a chance that your friendship may not last.
Maid of Dishonor (the first in the Love Mishaps series), by Gracie Ruth Mitchell, was published in 2021. Samantha Quinn and Carter Ellis have been best friends for as long as they can remember. Neither knows that one is in love with the other. While doing everything they can to prevent Carter’s cousin from marrying for the wrong reasons, their unspoken feelings rise to the surface.
Both Samantha and Carter have emotional scars that are preventing them from revealing their feelings. They can either pretend that nothing has changed or take the plunge, not knowing what their future holds.
I loved this book. It has all of the elements of the genre. But it is neither completely predictable nor boring. The chemistry between Samantha and Carter sizzles. They have a perfect Emma Woodhouse and George Knightly-style relationship that quickly drew me in and held me until the last page.
My only issue is the low point in the story could have been extended a bit more.
Do I recommend it?
Absolutely. Maid of Dishonor is available wherever books are sold.
Eighty-plus years after World War II, the stories of both civilians and soldiers continue to captivate us.
American Brush Off, by Max Willi Fischer, was published in 2020. In 1942, Lud Mueller is 17 and an average teenage boy. The son of German American immigrants family, he is as American as apple pie and baseball. Due to his lineage, Lud, his family, and thousands of others are labeled as “enemy aliens”. Forced out of their homes and sent to the Texas desert, they secretly become a collective pawn by the government.
Forced to deal with Nazi wannabes and a romance that goes south, Lud changes in ways that are unforeseen and life-altering. When the war finally ends, he is not the young man he was previously, but those at the top remain the same.
We all know about the Japanese internment camps. Up until this book, I had no idea that German Americans were treated in the same manner. As the protagonist, Lud is a compelling character. But I could not get into the story.
Do I recommend it? No
American Brush-Off is available wherever books are sold.
History is full of lessons that are there for us to learn from. The question is, can we learn from the past or are we too stubborn/afraid to see it?
Code Name Edelweiss, by Stephanie Landsem was published this month. Liesl Weiss is a single mother living in Los Angeles in the early 1930s. Without her husband, she is the sole caretaker of the young children and aging mother. Though her younger brother lives with them, he cares more about himself that the family. When she loses her job, everything goes to pieces.
A wanted ad leads her to Leon Lewis, a Jewish lawyer who believes that Nazis have infiltrated Hollywood and are planning to use it to spread their message. But the powers that be are putting their focus elsewhere. Without any other options in sight, Liesel accepts his offer to spy on her friends and neighbors. What starts out as a mere paycheck turns into a realization that there is a dangerous undercurrent that could destroy the country.
Based on a true story, this book is amazing. Part spy thriller and part historical fiction, it is one hell of a ride. From the word go, the danger is in the reader’s face. I love Liesel as the main character. She is a woman walking a tightrope that could tear at any moment. Torn between her conscience and doing what she needs to do to keep her family afloat, Liesel has to make a choice that could put everyone she loves in danger.
Do I recommend it? Absolutely. I would even go as far as to say that it is one of my favorite books of 2023 so far.
Code Name: Edelweiss is available wherever books are sold.