(Originally published by Barbara Samuel)
Trudy Marino never expected her life to turn out perfectly. But at forty-six, she was content with what she did have: her caring husband Rick . . . twenty-plus happy years raising three accomplished kids . . . and a lovely house in the artistic, vibrantly diverse town of Pueblo, New Mexico. But a heartbreaking discovery and a suddenly shattered marriage now has Trudy looking back on the choices she didn't make --and where she might go from here.
Struggling to pick up the pieces, Trudy finds support from a quirky, eclectic group of friends and neighbors --her goddesses of Kitchen Avenue --all of whom are trying in their own unique ways to navigate life's little surprises. There's Jade, a fiery social worker who's finding unexpected strength to deal with her "player" ex-husband, thanks to a most unorthodox passion; Jade's grandmother, Roberta, who has just lost her husband of sixty-two years --and through memory and piercing grief wonders what to do with the rest of her life; Shannelle, Trudy's young neighbor and an aspiring writer, determined to realize her talent despite formidable obstacles . . . including the husband who's afraid her success will be his loss; and Angel, a young, quietly-knowing photographer who makes Trudy uncover a sensuality she never knew --even as he tries to get over the one love he can never really forget.
As Trudy faces her future, she discovers that figuring out what to let go and what to keep is just as difficult as moving on. As she weighs what she and Rick still share against new possibilities, she'll surprise everyone -- including herself --as she tries to reconcile the best of both.
From an acclaimed voice in fiction, this is a wry, beguiling, heartfelt, and warmly wise novel about second chances, unexpected choices, and the dreams that we all hunger to fulfill.
(Originally published as Barbara Samuel)
RITA AWARD winner
A successful Web designer, forty-year-old India has a fabulously hip life in Denver and a sexy Irish lover in New York who jets out to see her on bi-weekly visits. The long-distance romance suits India just fine: Though Jack is the only man who has ever made India feel truly alive, she doesn't want things to get too serious. But then her father passes away, and India must honor the promise she made to him: to look after her mother when he's gone.
Suddenly India finds herself back in Colorado Springs with the woman who both intrigues and infuriates her. Eldora is sixty something and exquisitely gorgeous, but her larger-than-life personality can suck the air out of a room. True to form, Eldora throws India a curveball, insisting that they hit the road to look for India's twin, Gypsy, a brilliant artist who lives a vagabond's existence in the remote mountain towns of New Mexico. It looks like India can't avoid her mother's intensity any longer, especially after she discovers stunning secrets from Eldora's past.
Thirty years ago, Eldora regaled her twin girls with glamorous stories about her days as a Las Vegas showgirl_ stories of martinis and music at the Sahara, back when Frank and Sammy ruled the town. But the story of how she really ended up in Sin City, and the unsavory life she'd run from with her daughters in tow, is full of details she's never seen fit to share_until now.
As mother and daughter sail down Route 66, the very road Eldora drove those many years ago, looking for Gypsy, while passing motels, diners, and souvenir shops, Eldora must relive a lifetime of memories that have tormented her before she can put them to rest once and for all. . . .
Award-winning author Barbara Samuel brings us a heartfelt story of second chances and unexpected detours. As two women come to terms with themselves and each other, the past unravels and the future spreads out before them like the open road.
(Originally published as Barbara Samuel)
With her acclaimed hardcover debut, No Place Like Home,readers enthusiastically welcomed Barbara Samuel into the ranks of bestselling women's fiction, applauding her stirring novel of loss and redemption. In A Piece of Heaven, she shares another poignant tale rich in atmosphere and insight that explores the complexity of relationships, the importance of family, and the healing power of love.
In the sun-baked hills of New Mexico, Luna McGraw has lived a lifetime of regrets, struggling to conquer the demons that destroyed her marriage and caused her to lose custody of her beloved daughter. But as Luna fights to rebuild a relationship with the troubled teenager, she remains haunted by images of her own childhood and the father she barely knew.
Strong and resilient as the houses he builds, Thomas Coyote comes into Luna's life one extraordinary night when his grandmother nearly dies while conjuring a fiery brew of spiritual enchantment. Luna does not need a man -- especially one with a needy ex-wife --to complicate her fragile dreams of the future. Their attraction pushes them both beyond reason into a place where there is only possibility. Yet it will take more than passion to recover the tattered pieces of Luna's soul, more than time to forgive the sins of an offending husband, and more than promises to mend the broken heart of a child.
A Piece of Heaven is an irresistible novel full of colorful characters and lush settings spiced with the magical flavors of the Southwest, a brilliant tapestry of romance and realism by a master storyteller.
I'll do whatever I have to do. Drop to my knees and offer her the only thing I have left. The one thing that’s only ever been hers—the heart of the devil.
Heart of the Devil is the third book in the Forge Trilogy and should be read after Deal with the Devil (book 1) and Luck of the Devil (book 2). All three books in the Forge Trilogy are available to devour now!