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Check It Out

Courier Article by Kate Linderman
Sunday, June 27, 2010

New 'chick lit' novels available at Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library

With temperatures recently in the high 90s, I think it's safe to say that summer is upon us.

Honestly, I'm not a fan of hot weather, so I'm not going to encourage anyone to sit outside and enjoy a book. However, some new books by giants of "chick lit+ such as Jennifer Weiner, Emily Giffin and Jane Green currently are adorning the shelves at the Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library or soon will be (Weiner not until July 13). They might entice you to come inside to one of our comfortably air-conditioned locations to pick up a book, sit in a nice, squishy chair, kick up your feet and start reading.

Emily Giffin's newest is called "Heart of the Matter." It focuses on the life and marriage of Tessa Russo (fun fact: Tessa's brother is Dex, the stolen fiancé from Giffin's debut novel Something Borrowed), a one-time college professor turned stay-at-home-mom who is married to the dashing Nick Russo, a pediatric plastic surgeon whose focus is burn victims. When Nick gets a little too close to one of his patient's single mothers, Tessa begins to revisit her decision to abandon her career as her marriage to Nick begins to unravel.

"Promises to Keep" is Jane Green's homage to a real-life friend stricken with cancer. Callie Perry is a successful portrait photographer and survivor of breast cancer. Callie is suddenly stricken with a rare and deadly complication of the disease that brings her sister, best friend and divorced parents back together at her bedside. Callie has to find a way to bring her family back together even as she prepares to say goodbye to them forever.

Harriet Evans, one of my favorite authors, has a book on our suggested titles for summer reading this year, called "The Love of Her Life." Kate Miller is returning to London to visit her gravely ill father after three years with her mother in New York City. As Kate returns to her hometown, the story of why she left in the first place slowly unravels to reveal a tale that is one part mystery and one part heartbreaking love story. "The Love of Her Life" is about losing love, finding love, and trusting in friends and family. It's a wonderful book.

Evans' new book, just out this week, is called "I Remember You," and is the chronicle of Tess Tennant, a young woman recently dumped by her boyfriend and out of work in London. She takes a job as a professor in her hometown and reconnects with her best and oldest friend, Adam. But as the past between them inevitably resurfaces, Tess finds herself involved with another man. In a journey of self-discovery that is usually the theme of Evans' novels, Tess must find herself, but also decipher her past with Adam and the nature of her new relationship.

A new author for me is Jill Mansell, although she's been writing bestselling books in Great Britain since 1990. Her most recent book, "Rumor Has It," involves Tilly Cole, recently dumped by her longtime boyfriend (who takes half of her stuff with him when he moves out) and looking to add some spice to her life. She decides to move closer to one of her friends, to a small town in the Cotswolds, believing she'll enjoy a quaint country existence. What she finds is a hotbed of gossip and scandal, with herself in the starring role, as she becomes involved with the town Lothario, Jack Lucas. "Rumor Has It" is a fun 'beach read' - especially if you're a fan of British "chick lit."

Finally, Jennifer Weiner has a new book coming out on July 13 entitled "Fly Away Home." Interested readers can sample the first chapter on Weiner's Web site, This timely story is about a political wife's public disgrace and her retreat to a family home in Connecticut to rebuild her life. A timely story, and if the first chapter is any indication, another engaging bestseller from Weiner.