Sometimes I just find the perfect book. Generally, it is not a literary masterpiece or even on the New York Times best sellers list. It just speaks to me. You know...the kind of book that makes you want to curl up on the couch and spend the day immersed in the story. I believe that we all look for different things in a book. Some people need a great deal of action, some need a convoluted plot, and some need characters that feel real. I need a little of the first two, but I have come to the realization that it is the characters who always pull me back to the story. Sometimes I can relate to them, sometimes they make me laugh, cry or love, and sometimes I just want to invite them to dinner. I need to feel those emotions to call a book terrific.
Second Chances by K.L. Phelps was a book that piqued my curiosity. This poor guy spends a year mourning the death of the love of his life and then sees her catching a plane at the airport. I picked it up fully realizing that it could really be a silly read with a plot that has been done many times before in many mediocre novels. Those novels, however, did not have Nathan. There is something about this young man that brought out the mother in me. I really believed the depth of his emotions for Paige, and that allowed me to accept the unrealistic parts of the book without snickering. I truly liked Paige too. Was it an epic...far from it. Will it ever be anywhere near the New York Times best sellers list? Hmm...only in the newspaper/magazine kiosks. It doesn't matter though, because it spoke to me.
Cold Cold Heart by Tami Hoag spoke to me too, but not so gently. Not being a fan of serial killer books, the first few chapters yelled at me to put the book down. Since I know that many of my readers are fans of the genre I did keep going though. This book was filled with a very different kind of emotion, but it did make me feel and think, so I am recommending it to you. The serial killer was only a small part of a much more complicated plot. There is a murder investigation, traumatic brain injury and PTSD to take the readers mind off of serial killer Doc Holiday.
Yes, a good author knows how to grab his/her reader and hold on tight. Whether you like romance, mystery, espionage, fantasy or any other genre, you are sure to find a host of authors who will push your buttons and make you dread the last chapter of their books.
As a child I used to worry that my favorite authors would get bored and stop writing. Authors like Phelps make me realize that most authors are having too much fun to ever put down their pens, and I, in turn, am having too much fun reading to ever put down the book.