Since I’ve been on a voracious path of discovering authors,  Lisa Jackson has been on my list of authors to try.  Her name just  kept popping at me on bookstore shelves;  so finally,  I relented and included her in my growing books-to-read pile.

Author: Lisa Jackson
First Published : 1998
Publisher : Zebra Books
ISBN : 0-8217-7944-3
No. of pages : 451

Synopsis :

Mary Theresa – Marquise – a spoiled, egotistical, only slightly famous actress, suddenly disappears. Maggie McCrae, her identical twin but her total personal opposite, receives a telepathic message from her missing sister, begging for help and warning about Thane Walker.

Thane Walker is one hunky, ruggedly sexy, manly man that Marquise and Maggie have had the hots for, since their teens. The more flamboyant, daring Marquise, predictably,  had snagged the man and had left her twin’s heart in smithereens.

Now, Thane suddenly appears again in Maggie’s life and insists on helping her find Marquise, his ex-wife. Maggie desperately needs to find her twin, who could be in mortal danger. Should Maggie trust the man who had broken her heart?

Finding Marquise will open Maggie up to old hurts and will reveal new secrets about her twin that she’s never known. On top of this she has Thane Walker to deal with…

The Review :

And so goes this suspense-romance that actually reads like a B-movie. And so like one, don’t expect writing that takes pains to develop its characters or convey some dawning life realizations.

The author aims to titillate and she does a very good job with this delectable confection of a romance wrapped in a whodunit-mystery-thriller— the kind of guilty pleasure you don’t want your book-snobbish friends to know you indulge in. 😉

A great companion for the coming summer margaritas and bikinis, Lisa Jackson is another author I wouldn’t mind picking up now and then.

My Mark :  Good; Enjoyable

Advertisements

 

Author : Gabriel Garcia Marquez

 

First Release Date : March 12, 1988

Publisher : Alfred A. Knopf; 1st edition

Paperback Release Date : October 30, 2007

Publisher: Vintage Books

ISBN-10: 0307387143

ISBN-13: 978-0307387141

Pages : 368 pages

 

 

 

As you start reading through the first few pages, you know you are in the hands of a master writer. This is a beautiful old-fashioned love story, the kind with a rare level of passion, perhaps almost incomprehensible to today’s egocentric driven modern culture.

 

It is a story of a love that spans almost a lifetime in the strange but persevering character of Florentino Ariza, who as a youth, is struck by love when he spies the enigmatic Fermina Daza. He woos her, wins her for a time, but as fate and youthful caprice would have it, loses to her to a marriage with a more worldly and accomplished Dr. Juvenal Urbino. Despite his personal devastation, Florentino continues to love Fermina with a constant yearning for 51 years and through 622 affairs, which teaches him that there is not just one way to love nor only one person you can love; but there can only be that one true love. Florentino Ariza’s incredible depth for passion and obsession drives him to live for this woman and experience a love that endures the test of time.

 

But the story is not just all about Florentino Ariza’s invariable fervor, which is central to the plot. There is also the sub-story of Fermina’s and her husband, Juvenal Urbino’s love that started out simply as affection and which, through the years of marriage, grew as deep as in any blessed union.

 

There are many other little “loves” in this book that makes for a very romantic epic but one refreshingly devoid of mush. It owes its flavor to Marquez’s formal lyrical style which charms the reader to breathe in his moving, romantic prose. This is the type of book that you may want to go back to, after a while — for a little paragraph here and there, just to find the pleasure once more of absorbing exquisite phraseologies, the style of which I find quite unique to the author.

 

 

For incurable romantics, this is a perfect book for the heart. This is the stuff of nobility, where love is tenacious and its hope, eternal. I have yet to read a romantic masterpiece that can rival this one. It is written with such rich language and with such powerful evocative feelings that you will have missed something if you haven’t yet picked up this book. It’s just beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!

 

 

My Mark : Excellent

 

Note: I just wanted to point out that personally,  I found the affair between a minor and an aged Florentino quite disturbing and offending.  This is  the only part I wish the author did not let his character stoop to.  But perhaps, he wanted Florentino to have tried all sorts of love —  even those that have no prejudice toward age. This, however, does not change my overall opinion of the book which is to say, that this book is a GEM!

Author : Douglas Carlton Abrams

Release Date (Paperback) : May 1, 2007

I picked up this book with the intent to read something light, funny, and a little bit naughty. The book hasn’t failed me on these three accounts; in fact, it has delivered a lot more.

The fabled Don Juan writes of his life as a galanteador (courtier) with the natural arrogance of someone who firmly believes he is God’s gift to women. But instead of being offended, I was intrigued and amazed by his ideas and perspectives on the female gender and ultimately on lust and love.

Don Juan is not your average rake. He is a rake, but one that genuinely loves women. He loves everything about them—their scent, their curves, their intellect, their eyelashes—everything! So by virtue of women’s innate beauty, he, Don Juan, takes it as his duty and life’s purpose to give the “ultimate pleasure” which they so deserve. (I wish men would think like this scrumptious guy).

His adventures, though, force him to question what the nature of passsion is. Can it be tied to love or is it a separate drive that has nothing to do with love? Is it possible to actually love and be true to one woman forever? Don Juan’s realizations to these age-old questions are tackled with lots of wit, humor, and surprisingly intelligent philosophy.

I certainly got more than what I paid for.  I got what I wanted : levity, sex, fun…plus artful writing and a good dose of food for thought, which I never thought I’d get from what I deemed as one of those “chick-lit” books. In fact, this particular passage was a little over my head:

“The greatest misstep in the dance of courtship is to believe it is our charm or beauty that is ultimately in question in this ancient fertility rite. Seduction and passion are simply Life longing for Life. It has little to do with our fears and faults. When we discover this Divine Secret, we realise that we are far less than we ever feared and far more than we ever imagined. Life uses us for its own satisfaction, and when we surrender to its will, we become a part of every kiss, whether or not it is made with our lips, and of every caress, and whether or not it is made with our fingertips.”

I only understood half of it. (I guess in crude terms it means: Go with the flow. ?) But hey, Mr Abrams does write prettily. Don’t worry, this is the only esoteric passage to me.

My Mark : Outstanding

Kudos to the author for a wonderful first novel.