Reading Recommendations: Chosen, a novel, Chandra Hoffman
It all begins with a fantasy: the caseworker in her "signing paperwork" charcoal suit standing along side beaming parents cradling their adopted newborn, set against a fluorescent-lit delivery room backdrop. It's this blissful picture that keeps Chloe Pinter, director of the Chosen Child's domestic adoption program, happy while juggling the high demands of her boss and the incessant needs of both adoptive and biological parents.
But the very job that offers her refuge from her turbulent personal life and Portland's winter rains soon become a battle ground involving three different couples: the Novas, well off college sweethearts who suffer fertility problems but are now expecting their own baby; the McAdoos, a wealthy husband and desperate wife for whom adoption is a last chance; and Jason and Penny, an impoverished couple who have nothing except the baby everyone wants. When a child goes missing, dreams dissolve into nightmares, and everyone is forced to examine what he or she really wants and where it all went wrong.
Told from alternating points of view, Chosen reveals the desperate nature of desire across social backgrounds and how far people will go to get the one thing they think will be the answer.
I Still Dream About You
, a novel, Fannie Flagg
Meet Maggie Fortenberry, a still beautiful Miss Alabama. To others Maggie's life seems practically perfect, she's lovely, charming, and a successful real estate agent at Red Mountain Realty. Still, Maggie can't help but wonder how she wound up in her present condition. She has been on her hopeful way to becoming Miss America and realizing her childhood dream of someday living in one of the elegant old homes on top of Red Mountain with the adoring husband and the 2.5 children and then something unexpected happened and changed everything.
Maggie graduated at the top of her class at charm school, can fold a napkin in more than forty eight different and interesting ways and can enter and exit a car gracefully, but all the finesse in the world cannot help her now. Since the legendary real estate dynamo, Hazel Whisenknott, founder of Red Mountain Realty, died five years ago, business has gone from bad to worse and the future isn't looking much better. But just when things seem completely hopeless, Maggie suddenly comes up with a perfect plan to solve it all.
As Maggie prepares to put her plan into action, we meet the cast of high spirited characters around her. To Brenda Peoples, Maggie's best friend and real estate partner, Maggie's life seems easy as pie.
Slender Maggie doesn't have to worry about her figure or about her Weight Watchers sponsor catching her at the Krispy-Kreme doughnut shop. And Ethel Clipp, Red Mountain's ancient and grumpy office manager with the bright purple hair, thinks the world of Maggie but has absolutely nothing nice to say about their rival Babs "The Beast of Birmingham" Bingington, the unscrupulous real estate agent who hates Maggie and is determined to put her out of business.
Maggie has heartbreaking secrets in her past but through a strange turn of events, she soon discovers, quite by accident, that everybody, it seems, dead or alive, has at least one little secret.
A wonderful novel, equal parts Southern charm, murder mystery, and that perfect combination of comedy and old fashioned wisdom served up only by America's own remarkable Fannie Flagg.
The Full Plate Diet
, Slim Down, Look Great, Be Healthy, Stuart A. Seale, M.D., Teresa Sherard, M.D., Diana Fleming, Ph.D., LDN.
The Full Plate Diet is based on eating foods our moms said we should eat, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, peas, nuts and seeds. These foods fire us up so we eat fewer calories, the key to success.
See you at Rylander!