Local authors delight fans with new novels just in time for summer
By KATIE VANBRACKLE
Searching for the perfect book to tuck into your beach bag this summer? Something fun and flirty, but not too shallow? A tale that makes you laugh, makes you stop to think, makes you shed a tear or two, in a good way of course?
Grab a group of fellow book lovers and head to FoxTale Book Shoppe in Woodstock this month to meet many of your favorite authors who have penned a compelling collection of new women’s fiction novels just in time for summer.
In addition to being bestselling, award-winning authors, the talented literary ladies featured on these pages are also your neighbors, hailing from Alpharetta, Milton, East Cobb and Atlanta. Dorothea Benton Frank is from South Carolina, but that’s close enough, we’ll claim her!
All are delightful women, full of wit, charm and a natural knack for spinning a good yarn. And you have the opportunity to meet most of them this month at a series of book signings, luncheons and launch parties planned by the owners of FoxTale Book Shoppe.
Mary Kay Andrews, New York Times bestselling author of “Savannah Breeze” and “Blue Christmas,” is looking forward to the June 4 launch party for her newest novel, “Spring Fever.”
“I love supporting indie bookstores, and Atlanta is blessed with several great ones, all over the metro area,” she said. “The gals at FoxTale ‘get’ me. They always have fun events with fab food, wine and friends. The staff knows their customers and what they like.”
Mark your calendar, meet some very entertaining authors and pick up some great new beach reads. Your chair in the sand awaits!
By Mary Kay Andrews of Atlanta
Mary Kay Andrews’ favorite place to write is her beach house on Tybee Island, Ga., preferably propped up in her big bed, looking out at the blue sky. She describes her books as classic beach reads: “fun, breezy, a little tart, a little sweet, goes down easy –like a raspberry mojito.”
Annajane Hudgens truly believes she is over her ex-husband, Mason Bayless. They’ve been divorced for four years, she’s engaged to a new, terrific guy, and she’s ready to leave the small town where she and Mason had so much history. She is so over Mason that she has absolutely no problem attending his wedding to the beautiful, delightful Celia. But when fate intervenes and the wedding is called to a halt as the bride is walking down aisle, Annajane realizes that maybe she’s been given a second chance. And maybe, just maybe, she wants Mason back. But there are secrets afoot in this small southern town. On the peaceful surface of Hideaway Lake, Annajane discovers that the past is never really gone.
By Dorothea Benton Frank of Sullivan’s Island, S.C.
When Jimmy McMullen, a fireman with the Fire Department of New York, is killed in the line of duty, his wife, Jackie, and 10-year-old son Charlie, are devastated. Trusting in the healing power of family, Jackie decides to return to her childhood home on Sullivan’s Island. Awaiting them is Annie Britt, the family matriarch who has kept the porch lights on to welcome them home even though relations between mother and daughter have never been what you would call smooth. Captivated by the island’s natural charms and lively stories of Blackbeard and his pirates who once sailed the Carolina waters and of former resident Edgar Allen Poe, mother, daughter, and grandson will share a memorable, illuminating summer.
By Karen White of Milton
For as long as she can remember, Ava Whalen has struggled with a sense of not belonging, and now, at 34, she still feels stymied by her family. She thinks her days of loneliness are over when she meets child psychologist Matthew Frazier and impulsively elopes to Matthew’s ancestral home on St. Simons Island, off the coast of Georgia. But there is much Ava doesn’t know about Matthew, including the mysterious circumstances surrounding his first wife’s death. Feeling adrift, Ava throws herself into uncovering Matthew’s family history and that of the island, not realizing that her obsession with the past could very well destroy her future.
Read more about Karen White and “Sea Change” here.
By Wendy Wax of East Cobb
After suffering a series of hard knocks, unlikely friends Madeline, Avery and Nicole have arrived in Miami’s South Beach neighborhood to bring a once-grand historic house back to its former glory on a new television show called “Do-Over.” At least, that’s the plan until the women realize that having their work broadcast is one thing, having their personal lives play out on TV is another thing entirely. Soon they are struggling to hold themselves, and the project, together. With a decades-old mystery — and the hurricane season — looming, the women are forced to figure out just how they’ll weather life’s storms.
Wallflower in Bloom
By Claire Cook of East Cobb
Deirdre Griffin has a great life; it’s just not her own. She’s the around-the-clock personal assistant to her charismatic, high-maintenance, New Age guru brother, Tag. As the family wallflower, her only worth seems to be as gatekeeper to Tag at his New England seaside compound. While drowning her sorrows after a failed relationship, Deirdre decides to use Tag’s massive online following to get herself voted on as a last-minute replacement on “Dancing with the Stars.” It’ll get her back in shape, mentally and physically. It might even get her a life of her own. Deirdre’s 15 minutes of fame have begun.
By Kimberly Brock of Milton
Roslyn Byrne is 24 years old, broken in body, heart and soul. Her career as a professional ballet dancer ended with a car wreck and a miscarriage, leaving her lost and grieving. She needs a new path, but she doesn’t have the least idea how or where to start. With some shoving from her very Southern mama, she immures herself for the summer on Manny’s Island, Ga., one of the Sea Isles, to recover. There, Roslyn finds a 10-year-old girl, Damascus, who brings alligators, pumpkins and hoodoo into her sorry life. Roslyn rents a house from Damascus’s family, the Trezevants, a strange bunch, and finds herself caught in a mysterious stew of the past and present, the music of the river, the dead and the dying who haunt the riverbank, and a passion for living her new life.
Meet the Authors
The following events are organized by FoxTale Book Shoppe. Two events will be held off-site. Visiting authors only sign books purchased at the bookstore.
FoxTale Book Shoppe
105 East Main Street,
Woodstock, Ga. 30188
Monday, June 4
Launch Party for Mary Kay Andrews’ “Spring Fever”
6 p.m. Harbour Bar and Fish House, 129 Church Street, Decatur. $35 ticket includes a copy of “Spring Fever,” a bag of goodies, appetizers and more. Register at foxtalebookshoppe.com.
Saturday, June 9
Book Signing, Karen White’s “Sea Change”
6 p.m. FoxTale Book Shoppe.
Saturday, June 16
Book Signing, Claire Cook’s “Wallflower in Bloom”
1 p.m. FoxTale Book Shoppe.
Tuesday, June 19
Luncheon with Dorothea Benton Frank, “Porch Lights”
12 p.m. Magnolia Thomas Restaurant, 108 Arnold Mill Road, Woodstock. $55 ticket includes your meal and a first edition of “Porch Lights.” Reservations required by June 16.
Tuesday, June 26
Launch Party for Wendy Wax’s “Ocean Beach”
7 p.m. FoxTale Book Shoppe.