Pamela and the Hired Hands (Fantasy Guild Series Book 2)

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This is an early performance for Winfrey, and she'd find more presence in better projects later.

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Winfrey never plays herself in the movies. And yet in Disney's "A Wrinkle in Time," she's literally larger than life, appearing as a giant in the sky dressed in chain mail and a massive blonde pillow of hair spewing Oprah-isms. But Ava DuVernay doesn't cast her to play a charismatic goddess. Instead, she's there to do what Oprah does best. She brings hope, spirit and positivity to the film, and when she's talking to the film's main character, she has a gift of sounding as though she's talking directly to you.

Winfrey gave her all for the adaptation of Toni Morrison's "Beloved," showing sadness and anger in equal measure on screen. She even went method and simulated the experience of being a slave in preparation. But the film was a sprawling and overlong epic as handled by Jonathan Demme, and the its failure at the box office sent Winfrey into a "depression. Winfrey plays a small but significant role in Ava DuVernay's civil rights drama "Selma. She quietly and just barely holds her head up to recite the Preamble of the Constitution and prove her civil knowledge.

But it's devastating to see someone even like Winfrey humbled by pervasive racism. In this HBO movie, Winfrey plays a woman searching for a mother she never knew. Henrietta Lacks was the unwitting donor of a tissue sample that was eventually used as a cure for polio and countless other medical advances.

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But after years of lies and cover ups from the medical community, the Lacks family has grown untrusting and paranoid. Winfrey plays Henrietta Lacks' daughter as unpredictable and volatile, and her performance anchors a movie about how an African-American woman battling her own paranoia comes to terms with her heritage and family's legacy. In "The Butler," Winfrey walks a fine line between sweet and motherly -- and even unlikable.

She's cheating on her upstanding husband and struggles with drink, but she's still a sage figure in this family's household. She has an incredible scene as she's talking about Sidney Poitier, playing polite until her son insults the dignity of his own father. Their story in particular could have been so much more although, there were so many sub-plots intertwining the main ones, it was challenging to make a strong connection to most of the characters.

Let me tell you what did work for me.

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The writing. Hutchins is clearly a seasoned story teller and even though hers didn't quite work for me personally, her clever sarcasm, including showing Katie's self deprecation is why I kept going after I realized this story was nothing like I expected. After a bit of a slow beginning chapter or two , the book took off and I didn't put it down until I finished it - all in the same day. I love the island knowledge the author shares and the characters are full-bodied to the point you think you know them personally!

I love how the heroine is not perfect; her foibles are like anyone elses, making her easy to identify with in many ways.

The house, the lush island feel, the food, drinks - all suck you in and make you wish you were sitting under an u After a bit of a slow beginning chapter or two , the book took off and I didn't put it down until I finished it - all in the same day. The house, the lush island feel, the food, drinks - all suck you in and make you wish you were sitting under an umbrella reading this book!

I loved it. The more I read it, the more I lost interest. Saving Grace by Pamela Fagan Hutchins is publication. I was provided a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. Katie is going through a bad patch. She lost her parents in a tragic accident and then the man she is in love with makes in crystal clear he is not interested in a relationship with her- period with about ten exclamation marks. As a result, Katie has been killing the pain with a few too many bloody Mary's. Her job as an attorney also suffers. Katie's friends and family urge her to take some time off and get her act together.

She agrees and heads off on vacation. The tropical island where her parents died in an accident to be precise. Once there, Katie meets Ava and the two forge a friendship. Ava helps Katie try to find out what really happened to her parents. But, before Katie can make any progress she must return home to Dallas. Back at work, she is given her first ever criminal case, which she promptly botches. When she gets a call from the island explaining that Ava's lover has died and the house Katie had been interested in is back on the market, she returns to decide where her future is headed.

But things go from bad to worse with Ava is accused of murder. This is the first book in this series and I can tell you I am hooked. I can't wait to read the next one. Katie is a flawed character, surrounded by even more flawed characters, but is supported by some really great friends.

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I loved Katie's conversations with herself. She referred to herself as "Katie". Knowing deep down she is in serious trouble with her drinking, she just can't seem to stop. Her heart is broken by the death of her parents and the rejection from the man she just can not stop loving. A career nose dive puts the cherry on the cake. But, the island is beckoning as well a house that is haunted. Not only that, there is a nice man that has taken an interest in Katie.


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Will Katie have the strength to put Dallas behind her for good or will the past come calling? There are some really funny moments and some really sad moments in this book. There is a mystery to solve, there is a ghost, there is heartbreak, there is romance. It was hard to place this one just one genre. So, if you like contemporary romance, paranormal romance, chick lit, women's fiction and mystery, then you will probably like this book.

Katie will have more adventures in the next book which if you read the preview will have you quite impatient to start on the second book. Over all this one gets an A. Saving Grace was a breath of fresh air. The book is ripe with mystery and suspense with just the right amount of romance in the air for flavouring.

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I was drawn into the book from the very beginning. The biggest thing for me was the excellent description of Caribbean life. As a Caribbean woman, I can say this author got it spot on. Even though I'm not from the Virgin Islands, we island people are very similar in mannerisms and I found myself easily immersed into a culture that is much like my ver Saving Grace was a breath of fresh air.

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Even though I'm not from the Virgin Islands, we island people are very similar in mannerisms and I found myself easily immersed into a culture that is much like my very own. Our heroine Katie left her home in Dallas, Texas trying to escape from the demons of her life but the drama follows her to the Caribbean where she realizes she wasn't running from anything but her own self.


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  5. The search for answers in the death of her parents is answered indirectly in a beautifully woven ending.