Tag Archives: #SaturdaySeven

#SaturdaySeven #LASreviews


I’m that girl who picks up a book in bookstore and turns to the first page, not the back blurb, first. If the book gets me with the first line, I’m sold. Here are my 7 favorite opening lines in books. ( I really have about 1,000 but this is Saturday Seven not  Saturday 1,000, so…heehee)

The seven best opening lines in books.

  1. Call me Ishmael – Moby Dick by Hermann Melville

2. “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

3. “It was a bright, cold day in April. And the clocks were striking thirteen.” 1984 ~George Orwell

4. “It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electricuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn’t know what I was doing in New York.” The Bell Jar ~ Sylvia Plath

 

5. “In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since. ‘Whenever you feel like criticizing any one,’ he told me, ‘just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.'”

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

6. “We slept in what had once been the gymnasium.”

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

7. “It was a dark and stormy night” Snoopy via Peanuts & Charles Shultz

 

Since this is a progressive blog hop, let’s see what some of the other authors’ seven favs for the week are: SaturdaySeven

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#SaturdaySeven #LASreviews Agatha Christie is my home girl!

I may write romance but I lovelovelove to read MYSTERIES. This love was created when I read my very first AGATHA CHRISTIE novel when I was 10 years old.  She died when I was 16 but before she did I’d found and read every single one of her books in my local library. The way she constructed her plots; the over-the-top characters she breathed life into, even her protagonists like Hercule Poirot, Jane Marple and Tuppance and Tommy, were all valued friends to me during my teen years. So, in no real order, here are my 7 favorite Agatha Christie books

The ABC murders

There’s a serial killer on the loose, bent on working his way through the alphabet. And as a macabre calling card he leaves beside each victim’s corpe the ABC Railway Guide open at the name of the town where the murder has taken place.Having begun with Andover, Bexhill and then Churston, there seems little chance of the murderer being caught – until he makes the crucial and vain mistake of challenging Hercule Poirot to frustrate his plans…

Murder of Roger Ackroyd

Roger Ackroyd knew too much. He knew that the woman he loved had poisoned her brutal first husband. He suspected also that someone had been blackmailing her. Then, tragically, came the news that she had taken her own life with an apparent drug overdose.

However the evening post brought Roger one last fatal scrap of information, but before he could finish reading the letter, he was stabbed to death. Luckily one of Roger’s friends and the newest resident to retire to this normally quiet village takes over—none other than Monsieur Hercule Poirot.

Murder on the Orient Express

“The murderer is with us—on the train now . . .”

Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Edward Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. Without a shred of doubt, one of his fellow passengers is the murderer.

Isolated by the storm, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer among a dozen of the dead man’s enemies, before the murderer decides to strike again

And then there were none

Ten people, each with something to hide and something to fear, are invited to a isolated mansion on Indian Island by a host who, surprisingly, fails to appear. On the island they are cut off from everything but each other and the inescapable shadows of their own past lives. One by one, the guests share the darkest secrets of their wicked pasts. And one by one, they die…

Which among them is the killer and will any of them survive?

***this was a great stand alone book and has been made into innumerable movie & television adaptations.

Curtain

The crime-fighting careers of Hercule Poirot and Captain Hastings have come full circle—they are back once again in the rambling country house in which they solved their first murder together.

Both Hercule Poirot and Great Styles have seen better days—but, despite being crippled with arthritis, there is nothing wrong with the great detective and his “little gray cells.” However, when Poirot brands one of the seemingly harmless guests a five-time murderer, some people have their doubts. But Poirot alone knows he must prevent a sixth murder before the curtain falls. *** Poirot’s last case.

 

 

The Mysterious Affair at Styles

Who poisoned the wealthy Emily Inglethorp and how did the murderer penetrate and escape from her locked bedroom? Suspects abound in the quaint village of Styles St. Mary—from the heiress’s fawning new husband to her two stepsons, her volatile housekeeper, and a pretty nurse who works in a hospital dispensary.

With impeccable timing, and making his unforgettable debut, the brilliant Belgian detective Hercule Poirot is on the case. *** His very first case.

 

 

 

 

 

The Murder at the Vicarage

Miss Marple ( in her very first appearance) encounters a compelling murder mystery in the sleepy little village of St. Mary Mead, where under the seemingly peaceful exterior of an English country village lurks intrigue, guilt, deception and death.

Colonel Protheroe, local magistrate and overbearing land-owner is the most detested man in the village. Everyone–even in the vicar–wishes he were dead. And very soon he is–shot in the head in the vicar’s own study. Faced with a surfeit of suspects, only the inscrutable Miss Marple can unravel the tangled web of clues that will lead to the unmasking of the killer.

Since this is a blog hop, hop on over to the other writers in the series to see what they’re writing about today concerning the number 7! SaturdaySeven

 

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#SaturdaySeven #LASReviews; my 7 favorite Movie/book plot twists

Plot twists that lead to endings where you scream out, “NO FRIGGIN’ WAY!!” are just delightful to me. Remember the Agatha Christie book The Murder of Roger Ackroyd? At the time, many book reviewers accused Christie of playing unfair and being underhanded with the ending. But I’ve re-read that book recently and my thought: it’s masterful the way she manipulated the reader. If you’ve never read it, you should.

Because I like twisted endings, the kind you really should have seen coming, but the writer/director was so brilliant in how she laid out the story you didn’t, I give you my favorite 7 movie endings that you should have seen coming – but probably didn’t!

The Sixth Sense – really, folks, you should have realized where the movie was heading the minute the kid said, “I see dead people.”

Young Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) is haunted by a dark secret: he is visited by ghosts. Cole is frightened by visitations from those with unresolved problems who appear from the shadows. He is too afraid to tell anyone about his anguish, except child psychologist Dr. Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis). As Dr. Crowe tries to uncover the truth about Cole’s supernatural abilities, the consequences for client and therapist are a jolt that awakens them both to something unexplainable.

Shutter Island ( the book and the movie!)  “Baby, why you wet?” One of the classic lines in fiction!

  The implausible escape of a brilliant murderess brings U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his new partner (Mark Ruffalo) to Ashecliffe Hospital, a fortress-like insane asylum located on a remote, windswept island. The woman appears to have vanished from a locked room, and there are hints of terrible deeds committed within the hospital walls. As the investigation deepens, Teddy realizes he will have to confront his own dark fears if he hopes to make it off the island alive.

The Others. When you watch a movie about ghosts, you expect to see ghosts, no?

Grace (Nicole Kidman), the devoutly religious mother of Anne (Alakina Mann) and Nicholas (James Bentley), moves her family to the English coast during World War II. She awaits word on her missing husband while protecting her children from a rare photosensitivity disease that causes the sun to harm them. Anne claims she sees ghosts, Grace initially thinks the new servants are playing tricks but chilling events and visions make her believe something supernatural has occurred.

The Prestige. So bloody obvious…so bloody brilliant!

An illusion gone horribly wrong pits two 19th-century magicians, Alfred Borden (Christian Bale) and Rupert Angier (Hugh Jackman), against each other in a bitter battle for supremacy. Terrible consequences loom when the pair escalate their feud, each seeking not just to outwit — but to destroy — the other man.

 

 

 

 

 

Psycho. The movie that made the American public switch to taking baths!

Phoenix secretary Marion Crane (Janet Leigh), on the lam after stealing $40,000 from her employer in order to run away with her boyfriend, Sam Loomis (John Gavin), is overcome by exhaustion during a heavy rainstorm. Traveling on the back roads to avoid the police, she stops for the night at the ramshackle Bates Motel and meets the polite but highly strung proprietor Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins), a young man with an interest in taxidermy and a difficult relationship with his mother.

 

Seven. The last 90 seconds are everything!

When retiring police Detective William Somerset (Morgan Freeman) tackles a final case with the aid of newly transferred David Mills (Brad Pitt), they discover a number of elaborate and grizzly murders. They soon realize they are dealing with a serial killer (Kevin Spacey) who is targeting people he thinks represent one of the seven deadly sins. Somerset also befriends Mills’ wife, Tracy (Gwyneth Paltrow), who is pregnant and afraid to raise her child in the crime-riddled city.

 

 

Planet of the Apes ( the 1968 version with Charleston Heston, not the asinine remakes. ) Can anyone say, “it’s the future?”

Complex sociological themes run through this science-fiction classic about three astronauts marooned on a futuristic planet where apes rule and humans are slaves. The stunned trio discovers that these highly intellectual simians can both walk upright and talk. They have even established a class system and a political structure. The astronauts suddenly find themselves part of a devalued species, trapped and imprisoned by the apes.

This post is part of a blog hop. Click on to see what some other authors find 7-worthy! SaturdaySeven

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#Saturday Seven #LASReviews

Nora Roberts/JD Robb is my favorite author of all time. Bar, none. Many of her books deal with families ( as do mine) and as secondary characters with investment in the plot resolution, she typically adds children into the mix. Gotta love a bad boy who loses his heart to his lover’s kids! So, in no real order, these are my favorite Roberts/Robb books with kids as a major driving force to the story.

The Heart of Devin McCade

Sheriff Devin MacKade has always known his destiny was to serve and protect the small town of Antietam, Maryland—and for a long while he thought that future would include Cassie Connor. But when Cassie married the wrong man, Devin did the honorable thing and kept his feelings to himself. Now that Cassie’s divorced, Devin can finally follow his heart. Question is, can Cassie?  Cassie’s children, Connor and Emma love Devin and he them. I sigh every time I read the interactions between him and Emma.

All I want for Christmas

Single dad Mac Taylor is about to find out the lengths to which his mischievous twin boys, Zeke and Zach, will go to find him the Christmas gift of new love when they send a special wish for a new mom to Old Saint Nick… The twins wish for a mom for Christmas from Santa. Le sigh…..

The Next Always

The historic hotel in BoonsBoro, Maryland, has endured war and peace, changing hands, even rumored hauntings. Now it’s getting a major facelift from the Montgomery brothers and their eccentric mother. As the architect of the family, Beckett has little time for a social life. But there’s another project he’s got his eye on: the girl he’s been waiting to kiss since he was sixteen.

After losing her husband and returning to her hometown, Clare Brewster soon settles into her life as the mother of three young sons while running the town’s bookstore. Though busy, Clare is drawn across the street by Beckett’s transformation of the old inn, wanting to take a closer look…at both the building and the man behind it…  The scene where Beckett asks Clare’s boys if he can marry her is so heartwarming, I’m sighing writing this just remembering it!

Sea Swept


A champion boat racer, Cameron Quinn traveled the world spending his winnings on champagne and women. But when his dying father calls him home to care for Seth, a troubled young boy not unlike Cameron once was, his life changes overnight.

After years of independence, Cameron has to learn to live with his brothers again, while he struggles with cooking, cleaning, and caring for a difficult boy. Old rivalries and new resentments flare between Cameron and his brothers, but they try to put aside their differences for Seth’s sake. In the end, a social worker will decide Seth’s fate, and as tough as she is beautiful, she has the power to bring the Quinns together—or tear them apart… The relationship between Cameron and Seth is more father and son than brother to brother, and it’s endearing. Talk about a bad boy with a  heart of gold!

Red Lily

Hayley Phillips came to Memphis hoping for a new start, for herself and her unborn child. She wasn’t looking for a handout from her distant cousin Roz, just a job at her thriving In the Garden nursery. What she found was a home surrounded by beauty and the best friends she’s ever had—including Roz’s son Harper. To Hayley’s chagrin, she has begun to dream about Harper—as much more than a friend…

If Hayley gives in to her desire, she’s afraid the foundation she’s built with Harper will come tumbling down. And that wouldn’t be the only consequence, since her dreams are tangled up with Roz and the nursery. Hayley will have to put the past behind her to know her own heart again—and to decide whether she’s willing to risk it…

The In Death books – Bella Eve (Born in Death)

Just as Eve Dallas begins to investigate the grisly double homicide of two young lovers—both employees of the same prestigious accounting firm—her friend Mavis need a favor. One of the moms-to-be in Mavis’s birthing class has gone missing. Normally, such a case would be turned over to Missing Persons. But Mavis wants no one else on the job—and Eve can’t say no.

Now Eve’s trying to track down the missing woman, while simultaneously unearthing the deals and double-crosses hidden in the files of some of the city’s richest and most secretive citizens, in a race against this particularly vicious killer. Luckily, her multimillionaire husband Roarke’s expertise comes in handy with the number crunching. But as he mines the crucial data that will break the case wide open, Eve faces an all too real danger in the world of flesh and blood..Mavis goes into labor and Roarke and Dallas are her birth coaches, which, if you’ve read any of the series, you know is so comical it’s more than laughable! But the first time Eve holds her name sake in her arms is the stuff great writing is made for!

(Apprentice in Death)

The shots came quickly, silently, and with deadly accuracy. Within seconds, three people were dead at Central Park’s ice-skating rink. The victims: a talented young skater, a doctor, and a teacher. As random as random can be.

Eve Dallas has seen a lot of killers during her time with the NYPSD but never one like this. A review of the security videos reveals that the victims were killed with a tactical laser rifle fired by a sniper, who could have been miles away when the trigger was pulled. And though the list of locations where the shooter could have set up seems endless, the number of people with that particular skill set is finite: police, military, professional killer.

Eve’s husband, Roarke, has unlimited resources—and genius—at his disposal. And when his computer program leads Eve to the location of the sniper, she learns a shocking fact: There were two—one older, one younger. Someone is being trained by an expert in the science of killing, and they have an agenda. Central Park was just a warm-up. And as another sniper attack shakes the city to its core, Eve realizes that though we’re all shaped by the people around us, there are those who are just born evil… the last 10 pages of this book are priceless as Roarke and Eve finish up the case they are on and then hastily make their way back to Bella’s birthday. When the toddler sees their bruised and battered faces, she kisses their bruises away and even the perpetual snarky Dallas looses her heart.

Since this blog hop is inspired by the Long and Short Reviews site, click on these other authors and see what their #Saturday Sevens look like

1. ELF the Reading Addict 4. Marianne Arkins 7. Megan Slayer
2. Lisabet Sarai (giveaway too!) 5. Welcome to my World of Dreams
3. Peggy Jaeger 6. Lydia Schoch

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#SaturdaySeven #L&SReviews

As a writer, I never like to give advice on writing because I don’t feel I’ve suffered enough for my art yet. And yes, I know how pretentious that sounds. Hee Hee. But I do listen to the advice of writers who are much better than I am and probably always will be. So, here are my 7 favorite pieces of writing advice from what I consider masters of the written word.

1. “You fail only if you stop writing” ~Ray Bradbury

2. “A writer never finds the time to write. A write makes it. If you don’t have the drive, the discipline, and the desire, then you can have all the talent in the world and you aren’t going to finish a book” ~Nora Roberts

3. “Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself… It’s a self-exploratory operation that is endless. An exorcism of not necessarily his demon, but of his divine discontent.” ~ Harper Lee

4. “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” ~ Ernest Hemingway

5. “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” ~ Toni Morrison

6. “Read, read, read. Read everything – trash, classics, good and bad, and see how they do it. Just like a carpenter who works as an apprentice and studies the master. Read! You’ll absorb it. Then write. If it’s good, you’ll find out. If it’s not, throw it out of the window.”  ~William Faulkner

7. “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.”  ~ Stephen King

This is a weekly blog for writers. Click this link to see 7 other things writers are talking about. Saturday Seven

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#SaturdaySeven #L&SR

I grew up in the era of family TV. Long before cable networks, long before censorship went the way of the dinosaur, long before the Internet and you-tube changed our viewing habits. During this era, I was a lonely, chubby, nerdy only child who longed for adventure, siblings, and a stable family life. It’s no wonder 6 of the 7 following shows were family based, moralistic, and portrayed the types of families I wanted tobe included in. The 7th was pure adventure, based on my favorite song of all time! So, for today, my 7 favorite tv shows of my childhood are:

Family Affair

New York engineer Bill Davis finds his life as a swinging bachelor turned upside-down by the arrival of his newly orphaned nieces and nephew — young twins Buffy and Jody and their teenaged big sister, Cissy. In time, however, Bill adjusts his lifestyle to accommodate his young charges, with a little help from his fastidious British butler, Mr. French.

 

 

 

Secret Agent Man

A security investigator travels worldwide. ( and one of the coolest songs ever written by Jonny Rivers.

Brady Bunch

Here’s the story … of a man named Brady, an architect widower with three sons: oldest Greg, middle son Peter and youngest Bobby. He meets and marries Carol, with three daughters of her own: oldest Marcia, middle girl Jan and little one Cindy. Tending to them is a wacky maid named Alice. They all live in a four-bedroom, two-bathroom house in the Los Angeles suburbs. The story lines deal with boy problems, sharing bathrooms, lost hamsters, the occasional football to the nose, and attempts at pop music stardom.

Partridge Family

A widowed mother and her five kids form a band and make a hit record, then travel around the country in a groovy school bus. The comedy contrasts life on the road with the cozy suburban life they return to after the show is over. There’s feel-good music, hapless adults, scheming kids and heartthrob teens thrown in for good measure.

The Waltons

The life of a Depression-era family in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains is the subject of this wholesome series. The show is seen from the point of view of eldest son John Boy, who eventually goes to college, serves in World War II and becomes a novelist.

Little House on the Prairie

Based on Laura Ingalls Wilder’s series of “Little House” books, this drama series revolved around the 1870s adventures of the Ingalls family — father Charles, mother Caroline, eldest daughter Mary, middle daughter/narrator Laura and youngest daughter Carrie — who owned a farm in Walnut Grove, Minn., during the late 1800s, and the daughters all attended school where they were annoyed by bratty Nellie Oleson. As the years went on, Mary lost her eyesight and moved away to teach at a school for the blind, and the Ingalls family moved to the Dakota territory –and back. Laura met Almanzo Wilder, a man who would ultimately become her husband. During the ninth and final season, Charles and Caroline sold their farm and moved away, leaving Laura and Almanzo in Walnut Grove.

One Day at a Time

Divorced mother Ann Romano moves to Indianapolis with her daughters, rebellious Julie and wisecracking Barbara, where she struggles to raise the teens on her own. Ann tries to maintain a balance between being a career woman and caring for the girls, who she wants to be able to offer the independence she never had as a young woman. Schneider, the building’s quirky superintendent, is a frequent visitor to the Romanos’ apartment, where he offers the family his usually-unwanted advice on various topics. As the series progresses and Julie and Barbara get older, they head off into the workforce and start their own marriages, and Ann continues to mend her relationship with ex-husband Ed.

Check out these other authors who are participating the #saturday7

ELF the Reading Addict  4. Peggy Jaeger  7. M.T. DeSantis  2. Lisabet Sarai (giveaway too!)  5. Welcome to My World of Dreams  8. Megan Slayer  3. Marianne Arkins  6. Lydia Schoch

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#L&SR; #SaturdaySeven

In the 80’s, action adventures ruled the box office. Big budgets,  bigger heroes, and even bigger and badder villains. The heroes were all alpha, rugged, smart, focused, and many times, men of very few words, bordering on functional mutism!! These are my 7 favorite action-adventure movies. It’s no wonder 5 of the movies I’ve listed here were made before 2000. The two that were made after 2000 are still fabulous and action worthy. But the best movie of them all is the last one I’ve listed.

Air Force One

After making a speech in Moscow vowing to never negotiate with terrorists, President James Marshall (Harrison Ford) boards Air Force One with his family (Wendy Crewson, Liesel Matthews) and advisers. When a group of terrorists led by Ivan Korshunov (Gary Oldman) hijacks the flight, the President’s principles are put to the test. Feigning escape, ex-solider Marshall stows away in the aircraft and must race against time to rescue his family and everyone else on board.
 Best line in the movie: Harrison Ford right before he beats the crap outta a terrorist. “GET OFF MY PLANE!”

 

Raiders of the Lost Ark

Dr. Indiana Jones, a renowned archeologist and expert in the occult, is hired by the U.S. Government to find the ark of the covenant, which is believed to still hold the Ten Commandments. Unfortunately, Hitler’s agents are also after the ark. Indy and his ex-flame Marion escape from various close scrapes in a quest that takes them from Nepal to Cairo.

Best scene in the movie: When Indiana shoots a would-be assassin in a marketplace.

 

Die Hard

New York City policeman John McClane (Bruce Willis) is visiting his estranged wife (Bonnie Bedelia) and two daughters on Christmas Eve. He joins her at a holiday party in the headquarters of the Japanese-owned business she works for. But the festivities are interrupted by a group of terrorists who take over the exclusive high-rise, and everyone in it. Very soon McClane realizes that there’s no one to save the hostages — but him.

Best villain in a movie: Alan Rickman, hands down!!!

 

Taken

Bryan Mills (Liam Neeson), a former government operative, is trying to reconnect with his daughter, Kim (Maggie Grace). Then his worst fears become real when sex slavers abduct Kim and her friend shortly after they arrive in Paris for vacation. With just four days until Kim will be auctioned off, Bryan must call on every skill he learned in black ops to rescue her.

Scariest line in a movie: Liam Neeson to his daughter over the phone ; “You will be taken.”

 

Predator

Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger), a soldier of fortune, is hired by the U.S. government to secretly rescue a group of politicians trapped in Guatemala. But when Dutch and his team, which includes weapons expert Blain (Jesse Ventura) and CIA agent George (Carl Weathers), land in Central America, something is gravely wrong. After finding a string of dead bodies, the crew discovers they are being hunted by a brutal creature with superhuman strength and the ability to disappear into its surroundings.

Best line by a sidekick in a movie: Jessie “the Body” Ventura when he’s told he’s been wounded and is bleeding. “I ain’t got time to bleed.”

 

Lethal Weapon

Following the death of his wife, Los Angeles police detective Martin Riggs (Mel Gibson) becomes reckless and suicidal. When he is reassigned and partnered with Roger Murtaugh (Danny Glover), Riggs immediately clashes with the older officer. Together they uncover a massive drug-trafficking ring. As they encounter increasingly dangerous situations, Riggs and Murtaugh begin to form a bond. Riggs’ volatile behavior might just help them apprehend the criminals — if it doesn’t kill them both first.

Best comedy gag: Martin Riggs pulling a 3 Stooges face slap before head butting and arresting a group of would-be killers.

 

Wonder Woman

Before she was Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, Diana meets an American pilot (Chris Pine) who tells her about the massive conflict that’s raging in the outside world. Convinced that she can stop the threat, Diana leaves her home for the first time. Fighting alongside men in a war to end all wars, she finally discovers her full powers and true destiny.

Simply the BEST SUPERHERO of them all. ‘Nuff said.

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#LASR #SaturdaySeven

Romance tropes are fun to read. Truly. I mean, who doesn’t love a secret baby, or a Women in jeapodary story? Things are tired and true for a reason, folks!

So, in no order, here are my seven favorite romance tropes to read:

  1. Second Chances. There’s really something so powerful about giving someone a second chance at anything: life; health; love. These stories take a relationship that failed – for whatever reason – and then allows that relationship to bloom anew. The h/h don’t have to start where they left off – and really, shouldn’t. A new day and a new depth to their love evolves. Truly, Madly, Yours by Rachel Gibson is a good example of this trope.
  2. A marriage of Convenience. Even though this trope gets used a bunch in historicals, it can also be used in contemporary’s if written the right way. The Weekday Brides series by Catherine Bybee and The Marriage Bargain by Jennifer Probst are good modern day depictions of this trope. 
  3. Friends to Lovers. The first book I read with this trope was Emma by Jane Austen. Emma and Mr. Knightly are social friends, having known each other for years. When their friendship takes a wrong turn and then a right one to love, well, all I can say is that Austen was a master of romance writing for a reason.  In my own book. There’s No Place Like Home, I have two friends, Moira and Quentin,  use this trope. There’s something so wonderful about falling in love with your best friend! you share a lifetime of past memories, being with the other person is comfortable, and the love that blossoms is familiar. Love that!
  4. Opposites Attract. Who doesn’t love when two people who on paper seem so wrong for one another are in reality so perfect! Prime examples of this trope that are really good depictions are Bet Me, by Jennifer Cruise and Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas 
  5. Fake relationship. Lovelovelove this one! A good explanation of this trope ( but not the only one!) a girl’s been recently dumped by her boyfriend ( or she dumped him) and now needs a date to a wedding so she doesn’t look like the only girl in her crowd without a significant other. Good examples of this trope are Julie James’  A Lot like Love and Slow Heat by Jill Shalvis
  6. Enemies to lovers. A prime example of this trope is both the h/h want the same thing, say a job. They are each vying for it, trying to outdo the other, hating that the other exists. The Hating Game by Sally Thorne is perfect for this trope.
  7. On-the-Run ( aka Women in Jeopardy) Anytime a guy has to protect the girl and take her on the run to do so well, that story is just rife with lots of sexual tension and intrigue. I used this trope with my Will Cook For Love novel, book 2 A Shot At Love.

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#LASR #SaturdaySeven

For today’s Saturday Seven list, I’m talking about 7 bad-ass chicks in fiction that really speak to me as warrior women and game changers. I really could do this in at least 3 parts because there are so many, but these are my top 7.

Eve Dallas, the In Death Series by JD Robb.

A futuristic cop with the NYSPD, Eve Dallas is the survivor of a dark, tortured, and abused childhood. Raped, starved, and beaten until she finally kills her tormenter- her father – she grows into a woman who, although she doesn’t have superhero powers, is none the less the most powerful woman you will ever meet. Her sense of right and wrong is defined, clearcut, and as sharp as a razor. As her backstory unfolds in the first half dozen books of the series, Robb allows you to see that despite coming from the depths of humanity, you yourself don’t need to turn to the dark side. You have a choice: light or dark. Eve chose the light and for that she is an amazeballs woman and warrior.

Elinor Dashwood, from Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen.

 The oldest of the Dashwood sisters, Elinor is the “sense” part of the title. Composed, articulate, quick-witted and minded, although she tends to hide those characteristics behind the female conventionalism of the day, Elinor is the moral center of her family.  Even her mother looks to her to make decisions for the betterment of them all. She keeps her emotions hidden behind a cool and calm facade, but never for a moment think she doesn’t feel deeply. Elinor, to me, embodies the quiet warrior.

Stephanie Plum from the series of the same name by Janet Evanovich.

Who better exemplifies the woman of today in all her glorious angst, doubts, and confusion about life, sex, a woman’s role in society  than the gloriously klutzy and at times clueless bail bondsman Stephanie Hunter? From the moment you meet her – divorced, unemployed, and crushing on 2 men at once, you are drawn into her likeability, her openness, and her humor. Complete with a gun-toting grannie, a best friend who used to be a “ho”, and a cousin who is rumored to have performed illegal sexual acts with a duck, and you understand completely why Steph is the way she is. And to me, that’s perfect.

Bella Swan from the Twilight Saga by Stephanie Meyer.

You may think this is an unusual choice for a grown-ass, approaching Medicare age woman to admire, but you would be wrong. Bella embodies what every girl possessed with a romantic heart embodies ( including me): the desire to be loved like no one else has ever loved you before, and to know you would rather die than be without the one you love. She will do anything to protect the ones she loves and has no regrets about her choices. To love and be loved is what motivates all she does.

Scarlett O’Hara from Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. The penultimate spoiled southern brat, Scarlett is either loved and revered by readers or hated and despised. There is no gray with Scarlett. She is single-minded, determined, and forceful. She can pout and simper to get her way or fight back and rail. Plus she has the best resting bitch face of anyone in literature. Bar none.

Janie Crawford from Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston.

Janie is an independent woman in a time in this country when black women weren’t seen as equal to their white counterparts. Janie keeps on going, no matter what her life throws her way her, and is able to hang on to her dignity and sense of self no matter what. She challenges the conventions and forces those around her to do the same.

 

 

 

Gemma Laine from A Shot At Love by …me.

I feel a little wrong including one of my own heroines here, but Gemma Laine embodies every trait I feel is necessary in a kick-ass woman in fiction. Coming from humble beginnings and deeply hurt by her parent’s divorce, Gemma knew from a young age she needed to fight for herself and her sisters against a society that looked down on them. She is proficient in martial arts and not afraid to defend herself or anyone else with her physical prowess if necessary. She doesn’t suffer fools, and she is loyal to a fault. When she loves there is no middle area about it: it’s all or nothing. She would die to protect someone she loved and she always, always has the back of those loved ones. She may not be the most pleasant woman you ever meet, but you will always know where you stand with her and if she considers you a friend, you are one for life no matter what.

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#LASR #SaturdaySeven


Valentine’s Day has just passed and, hopefully, everyone I know had a day spent with the love of their life! I know I did.

Thinking about V-day always makes me think of great book quotes about love, relationships, the future. Here are seven of my favorite romantic quotes from books.

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, the ultimate romance novel from Jane Austen.

Darcy to Elizabeth: “In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”

GONE WITH THE WIND. A Southern bad boy loves spoiled Southern belle by Margaret Mitchell.

Rhett to Scarlett: “You should be kissed and often, and by someone who knows how.”

TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE.  A memoir of love, loss, and growing old by Mitch Albom.

“I like myself better when I’m with you.

WINNIE THE POOH. Everyone’s favorite Pooh bear by A.A. Milne.

“If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day, so I never have to live without you.”

STOP ALL THE CLOCKS, by poet W.H. Auden

( and this quote was made famous when it was recited in the movie Four Weddings and a funeral.)

“He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.”

 

 

 

 

Love Poems by Robert Browning.

NEW YORK TO DALLAS.Part of the InDeath series by JD Robb, and my personal favorite book in the collections.

Roarke to Eve Dallas, after she’s been in the physical fight of her life with a serial murderer and rapist. Eve is bloody, has a black eye and is filled with cuts, stab wounds, and bruises.  She states to Dr. Mira ( after Mira gives her a painkiller that makes her loopy) “I’m not pretty. ” Roarke, standing in a corner tells her, “You are the most beautiful woman ever born.”

Le sigh……..

When I’m reading or writing about romance and romantic fiction, you can find me here:

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