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Unpredictable Webs
     

Unpredictable Webs

4.5 12
by Darlene Quinn
 

Unpredictable Webs picks up the Webs series five years after Marnie is reunited with her birth family.

About to turn sixteen, Marnie Taylor is rebellious—fighting often with her mother, Ashleigh—and jealous of her more even-tempered and popular twin sister, Callie. Lonely, Marnie finds a compassionate listener in Brad, whom she meets

Overview


Unpredictable Webs picks up the Webs series five years after Marnie is reunited with her birth family.

About to turn sixteen, Marnie Taylor is rebellious—fighting often with her mother, Ashleigh—and jealous of her more even-tempered and popular twin sister, Callie. Lonely, Marnie finds a compassionate listener in Brad, whom she meets online. Spinning a web of lies to throw her parents off, Marnie arranges an in-person meet-up with Brad. But she realizes too late that she has been targeted in a sinister scheme for ransom.  

Quinn’s vivid cast of characters returns in this high-tension, stand-alone sequel. Though their actions are plausible, none of them behaves as others might predict in this tale that discloses the darker behaviors people are capable of. Cougar Viviana De Mornay takes Chicago’s fashion world and “Italian Stallion” Gino Cabello by storm. Tony Wainwright, who has paid his dues for a past crime and appears to have turned his life around, is catapulted to the top of the list of suspects. PI Ross Pocino is on the scene with his surprising insights into criminal behavior, and Paige Toddman’s mother, Helen, seems to grow younger every day. While some mothers can unintentionally do unspeakable harm to their children, Ashleigh’s steel-magnolia efforts to wrest her daughter from her captor redeem the sacredness of that role.

Read the entire Webs standalone series!
Webs of Fate
Webs of Power
Twisted Webs
Unpredictable Webs
Conflicting Webs

Editorial Reviews

C.E. Lawrence

From cocky cougars to perceptive private eyes, Unpredictable Webs is filled with enough vivid characters and plot twists to keep any lover of the genre happily turning the pages into the wee hours of the night. You won’t want to miss this juicy journey of intrigue, drama and suspense!
-- C.E. Lawrence, award-winning author of the “Silent” thrillers, starring NYPD profiler Lee Campbell
-- C.E. Lawrence

From cocky cougars to perceptive private eyes, Unpredictable Webs is filled with enough vivid characters and plot twists to keep any lover of the genre happily turning the pages into the wee hours of the night. You won’t want to miss this juicy journey of intrigue, drama and suspense!
-- C.E. Lawrence, award-winning author of the “Silent” thrillers, starring NYPD profiler Lee Campbell
Frank Gaspar

On first opening the pages of Darlene Quinn’s Webs series, readers may well feel that they are in for an engaging “all about” novel—in Quinn’s case, all about the glamorous, dangerous, byzantine, and ultimately exciting world of fashion and high-end retail—and those readers would be right. But wait! There’s more! Quinn develops her storylines and plots in a way that keeps . . . the books charging forward . . . nothing is what it seems and no character is without great secrets that will twist events and surprise the reader in breathtaking ways. There’s a great deal of fun and entertainment to be had in falling into these beguiling webs.

—Frank Gaspar, poet, novelist, and National Endowment for the Arts fellowship and three-time Pushcart Prize recipient

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781608324248
Publisher:
Greenleaf Book Group Press
Publication date:
05/01/2013
Pages:
464
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.50(d)

Read an Excerpt

UNPREDICTABLE WEBS

A NOVEL


By Darlene Quinn

Greenleaf Book Group Press

Copyright © 2013Darlene Quinn
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-60832-424-8


Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Halting midstride, Marnie whirled around, defiance flashing in her deep brown eyes as well as the biting set of her jaw.

Caught in her daughter's cold glare, Ashleigh Taylor found herself temporarily speechless. When did this precious child become so hostile? she thought. It's all my fault. She had hundreds of questions that needed to be answered, but every one of them stuck in her throat.

"I don't belong here. I never have." Marnie's words split the silence of the room. But in the next instant, her gaze dropped to the kitchen floor, and her voice fell to a level barely above a whisper. "I want to live with my mother."

I am your mother! Ashleigh wanted to scream, but she never would. The last thing she wanted to do was to put her angry young daughter on the defensive. Unbidden, the name she dared not speak aloud thundered through her head and hammered in her heart: Cassie. Oh, my Cassie.

Taking a restorative breath, Ashleigh willed herself not to slip back in time. If she allowed what-ifs or should haves to cloud her mind, she'd be immobilized. She had no power to rewrite the past. What had been done could not be undone.

Nearly sixteen years earlier, on the day Ashleigh had given birth to perfect twin daughters, Cassie had been abducted from the cradle beside Ashleigh's bed. That heinous crime had trapped two utterly different families in a heartbreaking tangle of secrets and lies for eight long years.

For those critical years, Erica Christonelli, the wife of Cassie's abductor, was the only mother her Cassie had known. How much easier it might have been if Ashleigh could have despised the woman. But Erica was no less a victim than she and her husband had been. Unaware that the baby she was raising as her own was Callie's kidnapped twin sister, Erica had named her child Marnie.

Ashleigh had never deluded herself with thoughts that the road to making her family whole again would be an easy one. There was bound to be a multitude of treacherous bumps along the path she'd chosen. Yet she never dreamed how difficult it would be to stay that course. Unwilling to deny her daughter time with the "mother" she had known since birth, Ashleigh had turned a blind eye to the obstacles and instead looked into her heart, drawing upon the old African proverb, It takes a village to raise a child. In time she had worn down Conrad's resistance. He'd come to terms with what was best for their daughter. They had agreed to make Erica a member of their extended family. But their "family village" was filled with so many pitfalls, so many side roads, so many voices. Far too many voices.

Ashleigh looked past the hard set of her daughter's jaw to her pain- filled eyes and quickly closed the distance between them. "Marnie. I love you with all my heart," she said softly. "If you don't belong here, then neither do I." She reached out to brush the loose hairs from Marnie's cheek.

Marnie stepped back. "That's a lie. I hate it when you say things you don't mean. I know you wish I'd never been born." Dissolving into tears, she averted her eyes, jammed her arms into the sleeves of her parka, and bolted for the kitchen door.

CHAPTER 2

From the pantry, Elizabeth heard every word of the exchange between Ashleigh and her rebellious daughter. Momentarily frozen in place, her mind quickly raced through the options. Ashleigh doesn't deserve this. She's a wonderful mother. She tries so hard to be fair and do what's right, not only for the twins and Juliana but for everyone.

Over the years, Elizabeth had become more like a member of the family than part of their household staff. She had grown to love and care for the entire Taylor family as she had for Ashleigh's beloved grandfather. Right or wrong, she could no longer remain silent. "Marnie," she called out, moving swiftly toward the door.

Ashleigh, just a few steps behind Elizabeth, reached it first and placed her hand over Marnie's on the doorknob. "Don't open that door," she warned. Her words came out sharper than she'd intended. Well, maybe not. After all, she could not keep tiptoeing around. Marnie was in need of a firm hand.

"What is this?" Marnie spun around, her gaze shifting from Elizabeth to Ashleigh. "Am I under house arrest?"

In the thundering silence, Elizabeth glanced from Ashleigh's troubled expression to Marnie's stormy defiance. If only she could shake some sense into the young rebel. If only she could find a way to help Marnie drink in all the love that surrounded her.

"Marnie," Ashleigh began, "it's sixteen degrees outdoors. Even if we didn't have a lot to discuss, you aren't entirely dressed for this weather." She looked down at Marnie's bootless feet.

"Whatever," Marnie sighed. "I'm sorry." Not meeting Ashleigh's eyes, she added, "I should just totally keep my mouth shut."

Before Ashleigh could respond, the kitchen door burst open. Juliana called out, "We finished our choreography and we're ready—"

As she slid to a stop in her soft-soled jazz shoes, her eyes flashed from her mother to Elizabeth before resting on Marnie. "Oops," said Juliana. "Guess this isn't such a good time."

Torn between her unusually perceptive eleven-year-old's excitement and Marnie's pain, Ashleigh glanced up at the wall clock. Quarter to ten. "How about we come upstairs to see your duet at ten thirty? That will give—"

"Can't we go up to the studio now?" Marnie pleaded, her face suddenly brightening. "I want to see how much of my part had to be changed."

Ashleigh glanced across the room to Elizabeth for a fraction of a second, but she did not hesitate in making up her mind. Looking straight into Marnie's damp eyes, which now seemed to sparkle in anticipation, she said, "Sure, we'll check out the new rendition of your duet. Then we need to talk."

Marnie nodded and took off toward the broad staircase in the foyer.

As they headed toward the dance studio, Ashleigh's mind reeled. Marnie's sudden mood swings were nothing new, and yet they never failed to astound her. Since Marnie's recent return from spending the last few days of Christmas vacation with Erica and her brother-in-law, Mike Christonelli, Ashleigh felt as if she were tiptoeing though a field of hand-blown glass baubles. As if the emotional turmoil that visit had stirred in the teenager weren't enough, Ashleigh realized that Marnie's being eliminated from the upcoming dance competition and forced to give up practice for the past few weeks—to give her twisted ankle time to repair—had taken their toll. And now that Marnie was walking without a limp, she resisted following through with the strengthening exercises she needed to avoid further injury to her ankle. Ashleigh knew the additional blow of handing over her role in the duet with Callie to her younger sister had to be far more devastating than Marnie was letting on.

"Okay, Midget," Marnie teased as she followed Juliana to the dance studio on the top floor of the family's suburban home. "Let's see how many of my pirouettes you had to take out."

"Only two," Callie called out from the top of the stairs. "She's taken on the challenge like a champ."

Once Juliana had assumed her place on the dance floor, Callie pressed play on the CD player and the two girls fell into their opening pose. For the duet competition, the twins had adapted choreography from Twyla Tharp's Sinatra: Dance with Me.

While Ashleigh joined Marnie as a spectator in the home studio, she wondered how much effort it took for her daughter to plant that smile on her face, when just moments before ... How much of who Marnie is today was preordained by DNA, and how much by her environment during those critical early years? Ashleigh was not alone in her inability to solve the age-old controversy of Nature versus Nurture. She only knew—based on the books she had devoured about the care and development of identical twins—that both genes and upbringing played a vital part.

Good, bad, or indifferent, Marnie had become the person she was through a combination of heredity and environment. To lay blame or attach a label was an exercise in futility. Undeniably it was heredity that accounted for Marnie and Callie having Ashleigh's brown eyes and Conrad's smile, but the genetic waters got a bit cloudier when it came to behavior, intelligence, and personality. When Marnie's moodiness first became apparent, Conrad had blamed her early years away from the family. Her personality, he pointed out, often mirrored that of Erica Christonelli, who confessed to having been diagnosed as bipolar, while Callie's even temper and optimistic outlook tended to be more like her parents'. Conrad glossed over the fact that Marnie seldom had to be reminded to wash her dishes and pick up after herself—while Callie typically needed to be told more than once. Ashleigh knew that even identical twins brought up in the same household since birth developed different traits and personalities. So why waste time analyzing? she scolded herself. We just have to deal with whatever comes our way.

CHAPTER 3

The last strains of Sinatra's "Come Dance with Me" faded, and Callie and Juliana slipped into their ending pose.

"Awesome! Bravo! Bravo!" Marnie clapped her hands and then struggled to her feet from the floor, where she'd been sitting cross-legged. Thanks to her ankle injury, this was no longer a simple task, but she managed and, once standing, threw her arms around Juliana. "Didn't think you had it in you, Midget." Turning to Callie, she said, "I guess you really should open your own dance studio."

Throughout the duet Ashleigh's attention had been more focused on Marnie than on the dancers. Her heart lifted now as she observed Marnie's enthusiasm—apparently genuine—for her sisters' performance. "Great job, girls," she said. "That was fantastic. If I were one of the judges, I'd be awarding you the platinum."

"Riiiight," Juliana said, a grin spreading across her face. "You're our mom, so that doesn't really count."

"Just because I'm your mom doesn't mean I don't know a great performance when I see one."

"Yeah, but you're prejudiced."

"Guilty as charged," Ashleigh admitted, "but I'm no dummy in the world of dance. I've been observing since ..." Her voice trailed off as visions of four-year-old Callie, all decked out in her pink swan's leotard and tutu, appeared in her head. Although Erica and Mike had given Ashleigh scores of pictures of Marnie from the years before she turned eight, Ashleigh's brain had blocked those images of Marnie all alone, never knowing how much she was loved and missed.

Ashleigh felt Marnie's eyes on her now. "Since forever," she said, as if she hadn't drifted off. Although she knew it was irrational, she felt guilty that Marnie had not shared those early years and was not part of those first memories. Maybe that's why Ashleigh couldn't say no when she had been nominated for chairman of the dance team's parent group. It had drawn her even closer to the girls, as she'd hoped it would. But in the past few years Marnie had begun to drift away.

"Mom," Callie said, "is it okay if I have Sam spend the night?" Samantha and Callie had been fast friends from the first day the Taylors had moved into their Greenwich home seven years ago.

"After you clean your room," Ashleigh replied. She hadn't missed the roll of Marnie's eyes when Callie asked about Sam spending the night. The dynamics between the twins and their friends were a constant source of both amusement and concern. When the sisters first came together, they had disassembled their separate bedrooms, creating one sleeping area for the two of them to share and turning the other into a separate computer and study room. But by the time they were in middle school, they had wanted their own rooms, their own space and privacy.

When Marnie turned to follow Callie and the others out of the studio, Ashleigh called out to her. "Marnie, wait. We need to talk. Let's get some hot chocolate and go into the living room."

"I don't want any hot chocolate."

"Okay. Well, do you want anything before we—"

"I don't want anything. And I don't want to talk." Biting down on her lip, she quickly added, "I said I was sorry. Can't we just forget it?"

"No, Marnie, we can't just forget it. I'm not angry, but I need to know why you are so unhappy."

Heaving a heavy sigh, Marnie said, "Please, Mom. School starts tomorrow, and I need to do some stuff on the computer."

She hasn't called me Mom since coming back from her trip to Chicago to visit the Christonellis. "Sorry," Ashleigh said, heading to the studio doorway. "First we need to clear the air about a few things."

"Whatever," Marnie grumbled, reluctantly following a few steps behind. On the coffee table in the family room, Elizabeth had placed a tray with two mugs, a pot of steaming hot chocolate, and a plate filled with Marnie's favorite sugar cookies. It looked pretty darn good.

Marnie watched as Ashleigh filled one mug. She was sorry now that she'd said she didn't want any.... But without even asking, Ashleigh handed her the mug.

"Thanks," she mumbled, reluctantly taking the cup.

"Marnie, I love you with all my heart," said Ashleigh again. "You do belong here with all of us. What can we do to make you feel that you belong?"

"But I don't. You and Dad tell me you love me because you're my parents and you think you have to. 'I love you with all my heart,'" she parroted. "Isn't that called a platitude? Something you just say but don't really mean?"

Ashleigh's face fell. She looked as if Marnie had actually slapped her. Obviously she doesn't know what to say. Maybe she's tired of pretending she loves me. Building up steam, Marnie said aloud, "Let's face it. I was born second. I am number two." Following a dramatic pause, she continued, "And number two spells loser." She'd read that somewhere and practiced it. It felt really good to say it out loud.

"Marnie," Ashleigh said, "tell me everything you feel. I'll just listen until you're finished. I promise not to interrupt, but then I want you to listen to me." She looked deep into Marnie's eyes. "Deal?"

Marnie stared back at her. After a few awkward moments she said, "There isn't that much to say that we haven't said a hundred times before. But now I know for sure that I want to live in Chicago with my mom and Uncle Mike and Bill."

Ashleigh leaned forward; she looked as if she were ready to say something, but instead she sank back in the chair, not uttering a single syllable.

This was great. Marnie was feeling in control—something she had not felt for a very long time. But suddenly her stomach felt as though it were a meat grinder churning away. She knew how hard Ashleigh tried to make her feel loved. It's really not her fault that she can't love me. It's my fault. I look like Callie, but inside I'm not at all like her. Callie is perfect. She's a better dancer, she has more friends, she gets better grades ... She likes everyone, and everyone likes her. "Let's face it, Mom. I'm an outsider in this family. I'm even on the outside with Callie's friends and the dance team ..."


Holding her tongue was getting more difficult by the moment, but Ashleigh knew she must not interrupt. She had promised. Besides, if she wasn't willing to listen to her daughter, how could she expect to be heard? It took all her willpower not to contradict what Marnie was saying, even though she was one hundred percent wrong.

Finally, Marnie slumped into the cushions of the couch. "Okay, now you can tell me how wrong I am."

"Darling, feelings are neither right nor wrong. They are what you feel deep inside, but sometimes they come about through wrong assumptions." Shifting away from the psychological and back to what Marnie had actually said, Ashleigh repeated her daughter's words. "You're telling me that you feel less important to us and less loved than your sisters."

Marnie nodded, but she looked skeptical.

"Marnie. I know words don't mean a thing when it comes to expressing feelings. I'll most likely repeat a lot of what you've heard before. But I listened to you without butting in, and I hope you can do the same for me. You have been a part of me since before you were born. Number one, two, or three. There are no losers. You are my daughter, and I love you with all my heart. No, you are not like Callie. You are not like Juliana. You are exactly like you. I might not always like the choices you make, but there is nothing you could ever do to make me stop loving you.

"When you tell me you feel like an outsider, is it because we sometimes talk about things that happened before you were returned to us?"

Marnie shrugged.

"I don't know if you remember or not, but we talked about this while you were still in elementary school."


(Continues...)


Excerpted from UNPREDICTABLE WEBS by Darlene Quinn. Copyright © 2013 by Darlene Quinn. Excerpted by permission of Greenleaf Book Group Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

C. E. Lawrence
From cocky cougars to perceptive private eyes, Unpredictable Webs is filled with enough vivid characters and plot twists to keep any lover of the genre happily turning the pages into the wee hours of the night. You won't want to miss this juicy journey of intrigue, drama and suspense! C.E. Lawrence, award-winning author of the “Silent” thrillers, starring NYPD profiler Lee Campbell
Frank Gaspar
On first opening the pages of Darlene Quinn's Webs series, readers may well feel that they are in for an engaging “all about” novel—in Quinn's case, all about the glamorous, dangerous, byzantine, and ultimately exciting world of fashion and high-end retail—and those readers would be right. But wait! There's more! Quinn develops her storylines and plots in a way that keeps . . . the books charging forward . . . nothing is what it seems and no character is without great secrets that will twist events and surprise the reader in breathtaking ways. There's a great deal of fun and entertainment to be had in falling into these beguiling webs. —Frank Gaspar, poet, novelist, and National Endowment for the Arts fellowship and three-time Pushcart Prize recipient

Meet the Author


Darlene Quinn, an international award-winning author and speaker, was a member of the management team for the Bullocks Wilshire specialty department store during a period of dynamic upheaval. Along with page-turning suspense, readers are given an insider’s perspective on the world of fashion and retail across the nation.

Webs of Power and Twisted Webs both won the National Indie Excellence Award for General Fiction and were finalists in the USA National Best Book Award for General Fiction. Twisted Webs was also the winner of the 2011 International Book Awards for fiction and literature. Webs of Fate was the 2011 winner of the Readers Favorite Award in the general fiction category.

Darlene lives in Long Beach, California, with her husband, Jack.

 

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Unpredictable Webs 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Listening on the edge of your seat! Like Darlene’s other books, Unpredictable Webs, is also in audio book format. Although I have read all of Darlene’s books, I anticipated that listening would be an adventure. It definitely was! Unpredictable Webs audio is like listening on the edge of your seat, while speeding down the road breaking the speed limit. I enjoyed how skillfully Darlene takes readers and listeners from the main plot and manages to engross us in the many well balanced subplots leaving us longing for, “what happens next”. I think this is my favorite book in the Web Series. The story is a fusion of suspense, family relationships, and retail business complications, with some well thought out plot twists and unpredictable outcomes. If you haven’t listened to any of Darlene’s books on audio I highly recommend you try one. The narrator Karin Aller picks up verbal personality traits with skill allowing the listener to easily distinguish one character from another. If you have read any of the books in the Web Series, you know they are difficult to put down. This is tenfold when you’re listening. I often delayed pushing the off button.
Lisa-111LD More than 1 year ago
Stuck in Darlene Quinn’s Web I cracked the lid to Darlene’s latest web-tastic book Unpredictable Webs wondering what drama to expect from the well-drawn out characters in the 4th book of the Web series. The story starts out evenly enough updating where each individual is on their life path. What’s good about the series is you don’t have to read them in order to follow the storyline. As I read on getting filled in on the various factions I wondered what the linchpin would be for this volume. It wasn’t long until the ride started and we were off to the races.  I can’t remember the last time I read a book that fast. It was Quinn’s usual style pushing the reader on at the end of each chapter into the next, but this time she really ratcheted up the intensity and didn’t really give the reader a breather. Translation – not much sleep until I finished the sequel. A good portion of the book is devoted to the teenage mindset or lack thereof. Quinn has that affliction down pat and the problems that ensue would make any parent prematurely gray. It’s a white-knuckler and  if you’re looking for an enjoyably soapy beach read Unpredictable Webs will keep you stuck to your chair.
JackieBCentralTexasJB More than 1 year ago
Read from May 19 to 21, 2013 BOOK SYNOPSIS Betrayal, rebellion, jealousy, and a kidnapping gone awry are at the core of this fourth novel in Darlene Quinn's ensnaring series. Unpredictable Webs picks up the Webs series five years after Twisted Webs. About to turn sixteen, Marnie Taylor is rebellious--fighting often with her mother, Ashleigh--and jealous of her more even-tempered and popular twin sister, Callie. Lonely, Marnie finds a compassionate listener in Brad, whom she meets online. Spinning a web of lies to throw her parents off, Marnie arranges an in-person meet-up with Brad. But she realizes too late that she has been targeted in a sinister scheme for ransom. Quinn's vivid cast of characters returns in this high-tension, stand-alone sequel. Though their actions are plausible, none of them behaves as others might predict in this tale that discloses the darker behaviors people are capable of. Cougar Viviana De Mornay takes Chicago's fashion world and ''Italian Stallion'' Gino Cabello by storm. Tony Wainwright, who has paid his dues for a past crime and appears to have turned his life around, is catapulted to the top of the list of suspects. PI Ross Pocino is on the scene with his surprising insights into criminal behavior, and Paige Toddman's mother, Helen, seems to grow younger every day. While some mothers can unintentionally do unspeakable harm to their children, Ashleigh's steel-magnolia efforts to wrest her daughter from her captor redeem the sacredness of that role. My Thoughts Since first introduced to the characters so vividly portrayed in author Darlene Quinns Twisted Webs in which Marnie Taylor was first kidnapped and then reunited with her family I have been fascinated with this series. Although there is 8 years in between that 1st book and the 4th book Unpredictable Webs it feels more like just stepped out for a moment than being lost as to what happened in the intervening years as it was easy to pick up the story and become reacquainted with the characters immediately. What came to mind immediately upon reentering the world inhabited by these characters is that their lives were exactly like those portrayed on a soap opera, lot's of glitz and little substance on the surface. However upon digging deeper you find that the characters are indeed full of all the human frailties of real people, they just have a little more money to grease the way and make life easier. In this story you find that having money does not always equal having a peaceful or easy life as you still have those unexpected ups and downs where things never seem to go as you would like, especially when it comes to your children. While it is a true family saga the twists and turns that the main plot takes the reader through leaves you with the understanding that no matter what happens love of a parent for their child transcends everything else and there is truly nothing that a caring mother would not risk to help her child when in need! I laughed at the antics of Paige's mother as Helen gave a lighthearted break that allowed you to catch your breath after the tension that came before the scenes she played a part in, cried for Ashleigh and her angst over her own child rejecting her love after 8 years of doing what she could to prove that Marnie belonged with her birth family, raged at Marnie for being so blockheaded and unaware of just how much her family truly cared about her and most of all eagerly turned the pages to see how all the multiple threads that the author wove would come together to form a cohesive hole by the end. Darlene Quinn has truly captured for her fans the dynamics of what happens when the lives of those we love most are put at risk as she also captures very well the fashion industry and the people who live in the heart of it in a way that is both interesting and informative without being overwhelming to those of us who have no clue what it is like in that world of privilege and money. As enjoyable a read as the first book in this series and one that kept me thinking about it long after finishing! [EArc from Netgalley in exchange for honest review]
MavenDA More than 1 year ago
"Unpredictable Webs" is the second novel that I've read in the Web Series. The first being "Webs of Fate". In that novel and in this one as well....Quinn, an international award-winning author, weaves together the plot with skill and expertise. Her knowledge of this fast paced, competitive world is evident in every word that she writes. She utilizes this knowledge to create an action packed, fictional work of art that will capture any reader's interest right at the onset. Marnie Taylor, the almost sixteen year old rebellious twin to Callie, has been abducted at birth. Reunited with her birth family at the age of eight, she still holds strong ties to the only mother she knew up to that point, Erica Christonelli. She is determined to leave the comfortable home she now lives in and return to the Christonellis as soon as she is able to legally make that decision. Due to her unhappiness and jealousy, she holds the inaccurate idea that her twin sister Callie and younger sister Julianna, are more loved and cherished by their parents. This dissatisfaction in her young life is the stimulus for creating an on-line relationship with Brad/Neil. When they make plans to meet in person, the terror and subsequent story line unfolds as Neil's half brother, Rick, comes up with a kidnapping scheme. Ashleigh and Conrad Taylor show their love and devotion to all their children as they make every effort to comply to the ransom demands. Up to this point, the reader is introduced to a vibrant cast of characters including Viviana De Mornay who is about to take Chicago's fashion industry by storm and her new main squeeze, sexy Italian Gino Cabello. Tony Wainwright, with his former criminal record, is making every effort to turn his life around but...when his past with the Taylors comes back to haunt him, he has every desire to prove his innocence in this latest abduction. There are many unpredictable twists and turns in this novel which certainly give credence to the aptly chosen title. "Unpredictable Webs" grabbed me from the first page to the last. The chapters are short, the plot is captivating, the characters are varied, and the story is well-written. In a nutshell, this novel is easy-to-read, hard to put down, and what I consider to be a "feel good" book because despite all the negative events, the Taylors prove that wealth and success don't always corrupt people. Ashleigh and Conrad clearly demostrate their morals and values by the example they set for others and their ability to forgive. As said in my previous review...It is apparent that Quinn is no novice when it comes to her ability to create a story chock full of intrigue, jealousy, romance, hatred and revenge. The many twists and turns that captivate the reader and hold their interest is beyond description...I wanted to keep reading and reading and I was very disappointed to see this novel come to an end. To me, that spells a great book. Quinn made me want more...no reader can ask for more than that nor can any author! Inspirational Author & Book Reviewer ~ Dolores Ayotte I'm Not Perfect and It's Okay
vanilla-vodka More than 1 year ago
I have read all of Darlene's books in the " Web Series". i have enjoyed each one of them. Though they are of course "webbed" together,  each one has its own part to tell. This most recent one had me wondering, what was next at the end of each chapter. I am particularly  interested in human behavior...what makes peopl do what do and how they behave with each other. I wondered what would happen to  the kidnapped girl. What would she be like as a result of what has happened in her life. Well, this book offered that information and  much more.I found myself unable to put it down. Though I think you should read all the books to get the complete picture, Darlene writes in such a way the you can follow the established character, easily. she is a talented writer that is able to continue weaving a web that leaves you wondering what is next. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This fourth of the Web series is aptly named.  Those webs in the retail fashion  industry, that are often volatile, sometimes seemingly random, all knit into a satisfactory solution.  When jealousy and rebellion spark another kidnapping involving twins Marnie and Callie, the book, as predicted, becomes a page-turner.   Though this new book can stand alone, it is especially enjoyable when the reader already knows something about the background of the main characters and how they have changed in the many years since their previous exploits. I predict that Unpredictable Webs will be the favorite of Web fans! Wesla Kerr, author of Matty McGuire Mop-up/Cul-de-Sac series
pegward More than 1 year ago
I think the best advice I can give anyone considering "Unpredictable Webs" is to be ready to spend some time enjoying this book because it is really hard to put down once you have started it. The nice thing about it is that the chapters are short so you can get in "one more chapter" before you really must put it away. If you are like me though you will find yourself thinking about the characters even when you are not reading it,that is how much a part of your life they become. I have read all of the Web Series and I while I enjoyed all of them, "Twisted Webs" was my favorite because as a mother it made me think twice about the way I would have reacted to the situations that occurred. So when I saw that "Unpredictable Webs" picked up a few years after "Twisted Webs" I was really looking forward to seeing how the characters lives had turned out. Darlene Quinn didn't not disappoint in writing another fast paced, thrilling, character driven novel. Once again I found myself wondering how I would have reacted faced with certain situations. I also find the business side of the story line to be interesting since I still shop in department stores and in the past few years there have been a lot of changes that I didn't approve of. So to be able to see both sides of the story is educational and the way it fits into the story line is interesting instead of being cut and dried. I highly recommend "Unpredictable Webs" and well as all the other books in the "Web Series".
BMINOR More than 1 year ago
If you like Barbara Taylor Bradford or Danielle Steel, you will love Darlene Quinn. She is among the best women fiction writers today. Her book “Unpredictable Webs” is packed with thrilling suspense and mystery; you will not be able to sleep until you discover what happens in the next chapter. The story involves an array of skillfully developed and compelling characters that come to life within the high-class world of a retail fashion empire. Yet again, one of Conrad and Ashleigh Taylor’s twins has been kidnapped. Marnie was kidnapped at birth and raised by a couple who wanted children. Marnie loved her only known parents and things become very complicated when she is found and returned to Conrad and Ashleigh at the age of sixteen; and to live with her unknown twin Callie and other sister Juliana. She feels inferior to her twin Callie who had always remained with their biological parents and just wants to return to her first family who loved her. Marnie is rebellious and seeks friendship with a young man on the internet. She plans to sneak out and meet him at a coffee shop while with her family at an event held at the Palmer House Hotel downtown Chicago. Unfortunately, it becomes a case of mistaken identity and her sister Callie becomes the victim of a kidnapping by a monstrous couple and held captive for ransom on an old, dilapidated boat where she meets the young boy who has no idea what is happening to either of them. Now, Marnie will do whatever it takes to save her sister. This is one of Darlene Quinn’s web series books and each book just gets better. I highly recommend this one filled with your favorite characters from Darlene’s previous books and some gut wrenching, jaw dropping excitement! Brenda Minor Psychologist/Author
Nanc1r3ads More than 1 year ago
Darlene Quinn has done it again! I felt like I had sat down to an exceptional meal prepared by a trusted celebrity chef! I was served tried and true characters with new faces stirred in to entice and entertain. A recipe for success! Quinn's creation blends exotic flavors together ranging from simple sweetness to vivid tartness-just right for an "unpredictable" serving of love, hate, crime, and redemption. Each page builds on surprise and suspense pleasing the reader's palate and leaving us full and satisfied. Thanks Darlene. I can hardly wait for your next course!
MariamKobras More than 1 year ago
 It's not easy to find your footing in this book if you haven't read the others that went before it – which I haven't. But the first chapters with the many character introductions are like a lively surf: once you're beyond that, you'll find yourself in calmer waters, and easily ensnared by a compelling story. This is a sweeping family saga, with many twists and turns, and many people telling it from their point of view. Again, this may not everyone's cup of tea, but it doesn't bother me at all. In fact, it adds to the mosaic. A nice read for a lazy Sunday afternoon!
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Kristie Ingerto for Readers' Favorite There is a new Darlene Quinn book out in her Webs series and it is one you will not want to miss out on! “Unpredictable Webs” draws the reader back into the retail and fashion world as well as the lives of Ashleigh and Conrad and their twin daughters Callie and Cassie/Marnie. The book picks up in the series five years after Marnie is returned to her birth parents. Marnie is a rebellious teenager and has had difficulty adjusting to her family as they are not the family she grew up with as a child and finds it hard to fit in with the perfect twin sister. Marnie believes that she has met a friend online and comes to trust him – to trust him enough to meet him. However, Marnie learns too late that her friend is not who she believes him to be and she is caught in a sinister plan. This book is a fast-paced exciting read that immediately draws the reader back into the characters’ lives. They are characters who are loved from Quinn’s previous novels. All the characters are so well-developed and so real in this book. It is easy to empathize with the characters, especially the mothers Erica and Ashleigh. I found myself trying to imagine how it would feel not to have my daughter, as Ashleigh felt for years, and how difficult it is for Erica not to have her daughter whom she raised as an infant and child. Quinn is a talented writer and storyteller who writes books filled with all the elements of great books – real characters, love, betrayal and suspense.
WritermomHB More than 1 year ago
As the Webs Continue How can a hostile takeover of a department store be made into an interesting novel? Ask Darlene Quinn. This fourth installment of her “Webs” series answers that question quite nicely. This author has done her research well. She presents her characters with depth and passion. She creates scenes the reader can see in his/her mind’s eye. She leads the reader along with the thoughts of her characters’ minds. Because of the way she writes, I can see this novel, and actually, the entire series of “Webs” novels, being made into a daytime drama. The way in which the author describes the character’s thoughts and feelings could easily be a scene on television. However, although there is passion, there is not the blatant sexuality that is often seen in daytime drama. The sexual attractions are there in places, but are described as feelings. The actual sex is not graphically portrayed. Although there are 127 chapters and an additional section of author’s notes at the end, the chapters are very short. This makes reading very easy for busy readers who have only small snatches of time available. Each chapter, however, keeps the reader wanting to turn the page, so he/she is sure to pick it up again. The novel is based on a true story and, as I said, the author has done her research well. I would recommend this book to those who like continuing dramas that are not filled with graphic sexual detail, but contain mystery, intrigue and satisfying endings.