Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Cathy's Got Some Great Beach Reads To Recommend

Eli McCullough, 13, is kidnapped by Comanches in 1849, adapts well and reluctantly returns to the white world after several years, using all he learned to build a cattle and oil empire. Intense, beautiful, heartbreaking and often violent, this novel about the founding of Texas reminds me of Lonesome Dove. I could not put this down.

In the early years of the Depression there are still plenty of people with money, and secluded, beautiful places to banish naughty girls. The Yonahlossee Riding Camp, tucked away in the mountains of North Carolina is where Thea Atwell, 15, finds herself following poor choices and an accident. The poor choices continue. Superb!

Carl Hiaasen is iconic and this is Hiassen at his best: wickedly funny, with murder and unforgettable characters.  

Italy, 1962. Cleopatra is in production and the studio is in trouble. Enter Michael Dean, fixer, and the lives of an American actress, a young Italian hotelier, Richard Burton, and others, are irrevocably altered. Jump to present day Hollywood and many of the characters are reunited in a surprising way. This is a fun, poignant, complex and masterfully woven tale.

Claire Roth, a gifted but disgraced artist, is offered a prestigious show if she agrees to forge a copy of a stolen Degas masterpiece. A pact with the proverbial devil, a powerful gallery owner (redundant in the minds of many artists) or a path to delayed and deserved fame? Art, suspense, and a bit of sex. A sure thing.


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