Frank -Love Him or Leave Him?

It just occurred to me that I’ve been blogging for almost a decade. The madness all started for me back in the year 2000. The AOL "You've got mail!" Internet connection lead me to forums and message boards and then, of course, Oprah's Book Club.
For an avid reader and writer, this outlet was a Godsend! I tried to join a local Oprah book club in Newmarket, Ontario but they had a full membership. Drat! I didn't let this stop me from reading books on the Oprah list but I found it very difficult to find other readers who wanted to discuss the books. Sigh! I desperately needed an expressive outlet! The Internet chats barely filled the gap and then there was that nagging urge to write. I'd heard about blogging and decided to check it out. My first blog was SAHM Rants and Raves. I began writing book reviews and it was all going very well with positive feedback and even the occasional hate mail! After 5 years of blogging and home schooling my oldest son, my husband took a work transfer and we moved to London, Ontario.

Somehow with the change in Internet servers I ended up deleting my blog. You know when it asks, "Are you sure you want to delete this post?" well, I think it actually said something more like, "Are you sure you want to delete this BLOG?" (Insert curse word of your choice here!) This was devastating at the time but looking back on it now it actually served as an opportunity to venture out of my comfort zone. Out of habit, I started up a new blog and on the advice of a few supportive friends, I decided to check out the opportunities available with local magazines. It was then that I went from a SAHM blogger to a book reviewer for a regional women's magazine. Flash forward to 2009 and I'm blogging for Erica Ehm's Yummy Mummy Club! I'm getting my fill of books, opportunities to write reviews and now book club chats! The Yummy Mummy Club has a Twitter book club that goes by Yummy Mummy Book Club, a.k.a. #YMBC. The virtual book club has been a joy for me to organize and I find all the invaluable insights to be a source of inspiration. Eureka! The club doesn't meet in person but there is a friendly connection with ongoing tweets and I've actually met some YMBC members during a tweet-up or two. Bonus! It's the best of all three worlds for me; reading, writing and camaraderie!

The first Yummy Mummy Book Club selection, Loving Frank by Nancy Horan, was suggested by The Yummy Mummy Queen herself, Erica Ehm. I was pleased with this selection since I had read it a while back due to my interest with modern architecture. The book title’s ‘Frank’ is the famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright and the object of Mamah Borthwick Cheney's illicit love. The novel is a work of fiction based on real people involved in a forbidden love affair over a century ago. Both have spouses, children and prominent standing in society, just to add complications. You don’t have to agree with the couple's choices to get drawn into their lives. Nancy Horan sets the stage with a colorful cast of characters and scintillating settings. The author gets right into her characters heads with descriptive and intriguing dialogue. Alternating between drama and navel-gazing, the self-proclaimed soul mates spend years trying to be together, all the while hoping for public acceptance instead of notoriety in society. The novel is ripe with juicy gossip taken from actual newspaper clippings and personal notations.
Nancy Horan spent years researching and writing the novel and this is presented in her meticulous attention to period details. Each chapter tell the story about the growing love affair between Frank and Mamah and even more, their growing egos and self-absorbed lives. Both characters held grandiose visions of their self-importance. The affair actually served as a catapult to launch the couple into public infamy. There's no doubt in my mind that Frank and Mamah would relish the attention from the tabloids and paparazzi if they lived out their saga in today’s world.
The story brings up the age old conflict - should you be with your true love at all costs or love the one you're with? Will you love Frank? The man -maybe not. Whether you see Frank as an arrogant egomaniac or a creative genius, he will leave an impression on you! Mamah is a bit more difficult to understand. Mamah is an eccentric, intellectual personality who uses deception and rationalization to justify her personal growth. Mamah saw herself a Frank's muse and used him as an opportunity to As a mother myself, I found it difficult to fathom most of her choices. If I was to sum up the novel in two words they would be scandal and sacrifice. That's all I'm going to say for fear of slipping out some spoilers! Fair warning dear reader, you might find the book unsettling or even disturbing, yet somehow very hard to put down!

Rumor has it that the novel is slated to go from the page to the stage. The rights to the screen version of Loving Frank have been attained by Lionsgate. I'm very curious to see which actor and actress will play the potentially career changing lead roles of Frank and Mamah.

Take a Look - Spooky Books!

Scream-Worthy Thrillers & Supernatural Page-Turners

Reading by moonlight while waiting for The Great Pumpkin? Face your fears this Halloween with a bestseller (and a bag of chocolate!).

If you fear…a missing child:

Fear the Worst by Linwood Barclay

Seventeen-year-old Sydney Blake’s summer is shaping up to be typical for a teenager: she’s spending it with her father, and she has landed a part-time job at a local hotel. One night, Syd fails to come home from her shift, and her father Tim is a bit alarmed. However, that alarm turns to full-on panic after he visits the Just Inn Time hotel and the manager claims that Syd has never worked there. Grilling his daughter’s friends for clues leads Tim nowhere — except to threats against his life — and as he frantically chases every lead, he can’t help but wonder if Syd is even still alive. Despite a growing list of unanswered questions, all Tim knows for certain is that he must continue searching for his daughter — no matter how high the stakes become.

If you fear…a pack of werewolves:

Frostbitten by Kelley Armstrong

New York Times bestselling author Kelley Armstrong returns with the tenth installment of the Women of the Otherworld series.

The Alaskan wilderness is a harsh landscape in the best of conditions, but with a pack of rogue werewolves on the loose, it’s downright deadly.

Elena Michaels, the Pack’s chief enforcer, knows all too well the havoc “mutts” can wreak. When they hear of a series of gruesome maulings and murders outside Anchorage, she and her husband, Clay, journey to Alaska in the dead of winter in order to hunt down the dangerous werewolves. Trapped in this savage, untamed winter realm, she and Clay learn more about their own werewolf heritage than they bargained for, tapping a little more into the wild nature of the beast within. With Elena back in the starring role, this is the book Kelley Armstrong fans have been waiting for.

If you fear…a body under water:

The Taken by Inger Ash Wolfe

DI Hazel Micallef is still recovering from back surgery when a report comes in that a body has been found in a nearby lake, snagged under several feet of water. But as DC Wingate says, the whole thing is way too eerie. The first installment of a story has just been published in the local paper: a passage that describes in detail just such a discovery. Real life is far too close to fiction for coincidence.

The second novel featuring Hazel Micallef is a stunning and suspenseful exploration of the obsessive far reaches of love. It will confirm Inger Ash Wolfe as one of the best mystery writers there is.

If you fear…an arranged murder:

Breathless by Dean Koontz

In the stillness of a golden September afternoon, deep in the wilderness of the Rockies, a solitary craftsman, Grady Adams, and his magnificent Irish wolfhound Merlin step from shadow into light…and into an encounter with enchantment. That night, through the trees, under the moon, a pair of singular animals will watch Grady's isolated home, waiting to make their approach.

A few miles away, Camillia Rivers, a local veterinarian, begins to unravel the threads of a puzzle that will bring all the forces of a government in peril to her door.

At a nearby farm, long-estranged identical twins come together to begin a descent into darkness…In Las Vegas, a specialist in chaos theory probes the boundaries of the unknowable…On a Seattle golf course, two men make matter-of-fact arrangements for murder…Along a highway by the sea, a vagrant scarred by the past begins a trek toward his destiny…

If you fear…a ghost story:

Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger

Another brilliant, original and moving novel from the author of The Time Traveler’s Wife.

Julia and Valentina Poole are normal American teenagers — normal, at least, for identical “mirror” twins who have no interest in college or jobs or possibly anything outside their cozy suburban home. But everything changes when they receive notice that an aunt whom they didn’t know existed has died and left them her amazing flat in a building by Highgate Cemetery in London. They feel that at last their own lives can begin … but they have no idea that they’ve been summoned into a tangle of fraying lives, from the OCD-suffering crossword setter who lives above them to their aunt’s mysterious and elusive lover who lives below them, and even to their aunt herself, who never got over her estrangement from the mother of the girls — her own twin — and who can’t even seem to quite leave her flat….

Discover your next great (spooky) read at

Printed with permission from Random House Canada.