Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss

Danielle Dresser | Books I’m Thankful For…

November 20, 2018

Welcome Fresh Fiction reviewer and Blog Coordinator, Danielle Dresser, sharing the books she’s thankful for… Stay tuned for more articles from our reviewers in the near future!

I’ve always been a big reader. Anyone in my family will tell you that while I was growing up, we could be a block or two away from our house, but I wouldn’t be able to tell you how to get home because if I had a free moment – in the car after soccer practice, on the way to school, running errands with my parents – I was reading, and oblivious to everything around me if I was invested in a good book.

So you can imagine, later this week when we’re sitting around Thanksgiving dinner and everyone is reflecting on the things we’re thankful for, I will definitely be saying books! Here are a few books I’m thankful for (from an ever-changing and ever-expanding list), and why they mean so much to me.

Born in Fire by Nora Roberts

This was one of the first romance novels my mom every recommended to me. My mom reads everything from medical journals to the latest bestsellers to the romance novels that line the grocery store checkout, and because of this, there were always books in our house. Now to be fair, at way too young of an age and unbeknownst to her, I was stealing my mom’s romances and reading the naughty bits years before she thought it was appropriate to introduce me to the world of romance novels. But when I did read this book for the first time (in my late teens) and I knew it was one of my mom’s favorite books, I could see why. The hero and heroine are both feisty and set in their ways, bicker, and think they know best… but this leads to both of them having to be vulnerable and learning to show compassion, and of course, falling head over heels in love.  

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by JK Rowling

Countless people are thankful for the Harry Potter series, and I am definitely one of them. Beyond great storytelling, fun movies, and a community of obsessive fans, this series brought me closer to my younger brother. We’re four years apart, and while I was in my teens when the HP series made its way stateside and my brother was in middle school, we both devoured them and suddenly had something to talk about. We attended midnight book sale parties, seemingly dissected chapters to erroneous comma placement, and to this day, share outrageous fan theories to make us rethink what we thought we already knew.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

This is one of the first BIG classic books I remember reading. When I was about ten, an aunt gifted me a gorgeous hardcover copy with illustrations. I found a kindred spirit in all four of the March sisters, but like so many, I gravitated toward Jo and her independence, drive to be a great writer, and eventually, her vulnerability. I’ve revisited this same book numerous time over the years and each time I find something new.

The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley

It’s clear that I’ve always loved books, and for most of my life, I knew I wanted to do something with books when I had to grow up and get a job. I eventually made my way into the PR department of an independent publisher in the suburbs of Chicago, working specifically on romance fiction, women’s fiction, and some historical fiction. I consider myself super lucky that one of the first authors I worked with was Susanna Kearsley. Her books were unlike anything I’d read before, so not only was I working with someone who wanted to do whatever it took to promote her books, I was also a fan of her writing. The Winter Sea was also one of the first books I worked on to hit a bestseller list, and making that phone call to let Susanna know was so exciting! I recommend this book, as well as all of her others, to just about anyone who asks me for a book suggestion.

The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory

You know that feeling you get when you read a new author and everything works? The writing style, the pacing of the plot, the characters feel like old friends… this is how I felt earlier this year when I read The Wedding Date and a couple of months ago when I tore through The Proposal. Jasmine Guillory’s books are fun and diverse and important and sexy and exciting and everything I look for in a great read. Check out my interview with Jasmine here, and be sure to follow her on social media! I can’t wait to read her next book, The Wedding Party, when it comes out next year.

I’ve had a lot to be thankful for this  year, and books are high on that list! What books are you thankful for? Tell me in the comments!

BORN IN FIRE by Nora Roberts

Born in Trilogy #1

Born in Fire

Maggie Concannon is a glassmaker whose exquisite works are
more than mere objects of beauty: they are reflections of
her own true nature. One man has seen the soul in her art,
and vows to help this complex woman build a lucrative

When gallery owner Rogan Sweeney comes to Maggie’s
isolated studio, her heart is enflamed by their fierce
attraction – and her scarred past is slowly healed by a
gentle and forgiving love.

Romance Contemporary [Jove, On Sale: October 1, 1994, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780515114690 / eISBN: 9781101214206]


Harry Potter #1

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Harry Potter has no idea how famous he is. That’s because
he’s being raised by his miserable aunt and uncle who are
terrified Harry will learn that he’s really a wizard, just
as his parents were. But everything changes when Harry is
summoned to attend an infamous school for wizards, and he
begins to discover some clues about his illustrious
birthright. From the surprising way he is greeted by a
lovable giant, to the unique curriculum and colorful
faculty at his unusual school, Harry finds himself drawn
deep inside a mystical world he never knew existed and
closer to his own noble destiny.

Fantasy | Young Adult [Arthur A. Levine, On Sale: September 1, 1998, Hardcover / e-Book, ISBN: 9780590353403 / eISBN: 9781781100486]

LITTLE WOMEN by Louisa May Alcott

Little Women

Generations of readers young and old, male and female, have
fallen in love with the March sisters of Louisa May
’s most popular and enduring novel, Little
. Here are talented tomboy and author-to-be Jo,
tragically frail Beth, beautiful Meg, and romantic, spoiled
Amy, united in their devotion to each other and their
struggles to survive in New England during the Civil War.

It is no secret that Alcott based Little
Women on her own early life. While her father, the
freethinking reformer and abolitionist Bronson Alcott,
hobnobbed with such eminent male authors as Emerson,
Thoreau, and Hawthorne, Louisa supported herself and her
sisters with “woman’s work,” including sewing, doing
laundry, and acting as a domestic servant. But she soon
discovered she could make more money writing. Little
brought her lasting fame and fortune, and far from
being the “girl’s book” her publisher requested, it explores
such timeless themes as love and death, war and peace, the
conflict between personal ambition and family
responsibilities, and the clash of cultures between Europe
and America.

Childrens [Barnes & Noble Classics, On Sale: February 11, 2004, Paperback, ISBN: 9781593081089 / ]

THE WINTER SEA by Susanna Kearsley

The Winter Sea

When she can no longer tell the difference between today and centuries ago, he\’s the only one who can reveal the secrets of time…

History has all but forgotten the spring of 1708, when an
invasion fleet of French and Scottish soldiers nearly
succeeded in landing the exiled James Stewart in Scotland to
reclaim his crown.

Now, Carrie McClelland hopes to turn that story into her
next bestselling novel. Settling herself in the shadow of
Slains Castle, she creates a heroine named for one of her
own ancestors, and starts to write.

But when she discovers her novel is more fact than fiction,
Carrie wonders if she might be dealing with ancestral
memory…making her the only living person who can know the
truth of what did happen all those years ago – a tale of
love and loyalty…and ultimate betrayal.

Romance Historical | Romance Paranormal [Sourcebooks, On Sale: December 1, 2010, Paperback, ISBN: 9781402241376 / ]

An exciting mystery filled with love, loyalty and the ultimate betrayal.

THE WEDDING DATE by Jasmine Guillory

The Wedding Date

A groomsman and his last-minute guest are about to
discover if a fake date can go the distance in a fun and
flirty debut novel.

Agreeing to go to a wedding with a guy she gets stuck
with in an elevator is something Alexa Monroe wouldn’t
normally do. But there’s something about Drew Nichols
that’s too hard to resist.

On the eve of his ex’s wedding festivities, Drew is minus
a plus one. Until a power outage strands him with the
perfect candidate for a fake girlfriend…

After Alexa and Drew have more fun than they ever thought
possible, Drew has to fly back to Los Angeles and his job
as a pediatric surgeon, and Alexa heads home to Berkeley,
where she’s the mayor’s chief of staff. Too bad they
can’t stop thinking about the other…

They’re just two high-powered professionals on a
collision course toward the long distance dating disaster
of the century–or closing the gap between what they
think they need and what they truly want…

Romance Contemporary [Berkley, On Sale: February 6, 2018, Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9780399587665 / eISBN: 9780399587672]

What happens when pretend love becomes a steamy romance?

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