In this short story, Shawn and Willie Daniels are off on a Saturday adventure in search of trash to turn into treasure. It is going to be a great day. Shawn is sure of it. No school and no bullies to remind him that he’s not one of the crowd. This is a story about bullies and what it’s like to be bullied (and not just by kids). It may redefine your definition of bullying. If you were a child who was thought of as “different” in some way, you know what bullying is about: torment, persecution, intimidation, to name a few of its synonyms. For Shawn and Willie, their difference was based upon the social status of a dysfunctional family and the alcoholism and abject poverty in which they grew up.
Raphe and Nina's story is Hot In Magnolia. These two true-to-life characters will have you rooting for them. He almost lost his life fighting a fire. Nina lost her ex-fiance in the same fire. They both feel guilty about the situation and have to overcome these obstacles to have a happy, committed relationship. Nina has a hard time trusting him because of his bachelor's past, and when some cast members of that past show up on his doorstep looking for a threesome, Nina runs away, but Raphe only wants Nina now. This story includes various supporting characters that will make you laugh. Rosie is a bawdy and unpredictable senior citizen with a penchant for moonshine and pot brownies. That basset hound, LuLu, sure gets around. Sit down, relax, and let Minette Lauren take you away for a while to Magnolia, introduce you to some new people, and keep up with some from the first book.
After a devastating loss, Brynn Wilder escapes to Wharton, a tourist town on Lake Superior, to reset. Checking into a quaint boardinghouse for the summer, she hopes to put her life into perspective. In her fellow lodgers, she finds a friendly company of strangers: the frail Alice, cared for by a married couple with a heartbreaking story of their own; LuAnn, the eccentric and lovable owner of the inn; and Dominic, an unsettlingly handsome man inked from head to toe in mesmerizing tattoos.
But in this inviting refuge, where a century of souls has passed, a mystery begins to swirl. Alice knows things about Brynn, about all of them, that she shouldn’t. Bad dreams and night whispers lure Brynn to a shuttered room at the end of the hall, a room still heavy with a recent death. And now she’s become irresistibly drawn to Dominic—even in the shadow of rumors that wherever he goes, suspicious death follows.
In this chilling season of love, transformation, and fear, something is calling for Brynn. To settle her past, she may have no choice but to answer.
After reading it, I don't know what I initially expected from this book. I downloaded it as a free read many months ago and finally got to it recently. It turned out Brynn was haunted, or rather, her vacation place was haunted. The setting is lovely; the author did a good job making me believe I was there. There were some quirky characters. It left a lot of questions. The local authority's suspicion of Dominic never came to fruition. Many questions about Dominic were left hazy. Why did he save Alice if she was doomed to die anyway? Why Did he dive into the water that final fateful time? The ending filled in some details about Brynn and Jane Doe found dead in the beginning. That was the fascinating element of the book. When I finished and thought about it, I got a nice feeling. I want to believe in life after death, love that transcends time and space, and a commitment that lasts for eternity.
What does it take to make it Hot in Magnolia?
* One cup of sexy
* Two tablespoons of sizzle
* And a whole lot of heart
Magnolia, Texas, might be booming with single men, but as far as Melvina Banks is concerned, it’s a bust. Between her volunteer work with the Magnolia Blossoms, tutoring at the local library, whipping up cupcakes for the local firefighters, and working at her dad’s diner, she has no time for blind dates let alone finding “the one”. Melvina would much rather spend her precious downtime fine-tuning her plan to open a bakery. When celebrity chef, Riley Nash comes to town for a Blossoms fundraiser, Melvina hopes for a chance to pick Riley’s business-savvy brain. With Riley’s nationally acclaimed talents and his successful new restaurant, Braised, he just might be the one who can help Melvina whip her blossoming idea into a recipe for success. Trouble is, she can’t seem to keep her mind on business when it comes to Riley’s devilish good looks and sizzling charm. The heat is turned up when Magnolia’s handsome fire chief, Manny Owens, sparks an interest in Melvina. Torn between two of Magnolia’s hottest bachelors, she can’t help but feel the burn. Can Melvina separate her rising affections for both men, or will she end up with egg on her face?
Cupcakes and Kisses is the first book in the delicious new romantic comedy series, Hot in Magnolia, by award-winning author Minette Lauren. Set in the burgeoning town of Magnolia, Texas, this hot new series is brimming with laugh-out-loud moments and chock-full of endearing characters who will have you rooting for love and cheering for happy endings.