Publication Date: April 2011
Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Contemporary Romance
Pages: Paperback, 512pp
(Received for review from Sourcebooks)
Synopsis (Book Blurb):
What happens when your best hope for the future is through the past?
Voice-over artist Alice avoids telling the truth. It's not exactly lying, and the freedom of reinvention makes those touch years in the past a little easier to bear. So when she meets writer Clayton Miller, she recognizes the suspicious signs of someone who wants to shrug off his old life. Untangling the web of secrets they've constructed creates an unlikely friendship - until Alice discovers that Clayton has betrayed her in the worst possible way.
The author of thirteen international bestsellers, Erica James deftly explores infidelity, bereavement, and the bonds of family with a sparkling voice that will resonate long after the book is finished.
Bestselling author, Erica James offers readers a tale of second chances in a her book, The Queen of New Beginnings. How many people wish they had the opportunity to be someone else, to reinvent their lives? James takes readers on an emotional journey with heartwarming and authentic characters who find themselves with the opportunity for a second chance at love. Readers will love James' unique blend of humor and sensitivity. Definitely, a book you won't want to miss.
Voice-over artist Alice Shoemaker had no idea when she took on the job housekeeping for a friend at her family home, Cuckoo House, that she would find a kindred spirit. Scriptwriter Clayton Miller has escaped from London to the country in an attempt to lay low after a scandal involving his girlfriend and his ex-writing partner. Both have secrets they want to keep inside, but as they are drawn to each other, they begin to learn more and more about the real Alice and the real Clayton. Their relationship that started out a little rocky becomes a second chance at love, unless betrayal gets in the way.
Erica James has written several international bestsellers and it's easy to see why after reading The Queen of New Beginnings. James has the ability to create characters that are believable and entertaining. Her trademark wit and humor make this story really come alive for the reader. This well crafted tale deals with some hefty emotional issues from infidelity to bereavement and James' smooth style and compelling characters will have readers glued to the pages.
Clayton Miller is a great character. He has suffered a heartbreak, as well as, the breakdown of his career and now all he can think about is writing his own obituary. That sounds a little morbid, but he comes across as a character that just can't seem to get a break. He is his own worst enemy, sandbagging himself at every turn. When he meets Alice he is rude and condescending until he realizes she is someone who might be able to understand him. Clayton has his faults for sure, but underneath it all he seems like someone who just really wants to find love and can't seem to figure out where to look. I thought James did a wonderful job bringing Clayton to life and showing readers why he wanted to reinvent himself.
Alice is also a lot of fun to read. As a voice-over artist she has dealt with a lot of creative people and she understands the appeal of being someone different than who you really are. She has a past that she wants to forget and the easiest way is to just become somebody else. When she first meets Clayton she pretends to a Latvian maid who gives tit for tat with her her rude behavior. These two have been unlucky in love and are both struggling with their feelings for each other and their fears of what might happen if they just go for it. James portrays Alice as the perfect counterpart for Clayton's eccentric behavior. I thought she did an excellent job of bringing the two together and giving the reader a reason to root for them as a couple.
This a great contemporary romance with a flair for the dramatic. The characters are engaging and funny and I think readers will find them easy to identify with and their story a tale that could happen in every day life. I recommend this one to romance readers of all kinds. A great story about a second chance at love.
The Queen of New Beginnings is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!