Truly, Madly: A Lucy Valentine Novelby Heather Webber
Lucy Valentine is as smart as can be, as single as you can get, and so not qualified to run a matchmaking service. But when her parents temporarily step down from the family business, Valentine, Inc., it's Lucy's turn to step up and help out—in the name of love.
Plus, her rent is due.
Here's the problem: Lucy doesn't have the knack for/p>/p>/i>
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Lucy Valentine is as smart as can be, as single as you can get, and so not qualified to run a matchmaking service. But when her parents temporarily step down from the family business, Valentine, Inc., it's Lucy's turn to step up and help out—in the name of love.
Plus, her rent is due.
Here's the problem: Lucy doesn't have the knack for matchmaking. According to family legend, every Valentine has been blessed by Cupid with the ability to read "auras" and pair up perfect couples. But not Lucy. Her skills were zapped away years ago in an electrical surge, and now all she can do is find lost objects. What good is that in the matchmaking world? You'd be surprised. In a city like Boston, everyone's looking for something. So when Lucy locates a missing wedding ring—on a dead body—she asks the sexy private eye who lives upstairs to help her solve the perfect crime. And who knows? Maybe she'll find the perfect love while she's at it…in Heather Webber's Truly, Madly.
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By Heather Webber
St. Martin's PressCopyright © 2010 Heather Webber
All rights reserved.
There comes a time in every girl's life when she realizes her father isn't perfect.
For me that discovery had come many years ago and recurred with shocking regularity.
Most recently the realization struck again after my father had a near-fatal heart attack while partaking in the horizontal tango on a Marblehead beach with a woman other than my mother.
He being with someone else wasn't the shocker.
It was the fact that he'd been on a beach. My father detested sand.
Luckily, his current flame must have had experience with the occasional cardiac arrest, because she had seen to it that my father was in an ambulance and on his way to Mass General before any permanent damage to his ticker had taken place.
That had been two weeks ago.
Currently I watched him pace his spacious designer bedroom, trekking back and forth from his walk-in closet to the bed, where two T. Anthony leather suitcases sat open atop the rumpled duvet. Sunlight filled the room from a bank of floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking Boston Harbor, making the room seem bright and cheerful when the atmosphere was anything but.
My father, Oscar Valentine, was handsome in a distinguished old-fashioned movie star kind of way. He'd turned fifty-five in August but could pass for late forties easily. Standing six feet tall, he had a slim, trim build thanks to his regular workouts at his exclusive condominium gym and his health-nut lifestyle. The heart attack had come as quite a surprise.
"Stop it, Lucy," he ordered me. He ran a hand through his silver-streaked dark hair and looked around the bedroom for anything he may have forgotten.
I tried not to notice how pale he appeared against the chocolate brown walls. "Stop what?"
"Staring at the bed that way."
I had been staring. As much as I tried, I couldn't stop thinking about how many women had been in it with him. And why he'd risk his stellar reputation by getting caught with a bimbo on the beach.
After twenty-eight years of having him as a father, I should be used to his behavior by now. I wasn't. I'd always known my father had women on the side, but I'd never seen one, never heard him speak of one, and honestly, I wished I was still living in denial.
"And you," he said to my mother, "you can stop smirking, Judith."
My mother, Judie, fanned her face with an Architectural Digest magazine. At fifty, she was smack-dab in the middle of menopause and losing the battle with hot flashes. "A beach, Oscar? You couldn't have ponied up for a decent hotel?"
"You do have more than enough money," I piped in. As he was one of the country's wealthiest men, money was the least of his worries. "Fifteen Beacon is a nice place. Or the Charles."
The pages of the magazine flapped, creating a cool breeze. "I've always been partial to the Ritz-Carlton. Ooh, or the Boston Harbor Hotel. All are discreet. Much more so than a public beach."
My father stopped mid-pace and took a good long hard look at us, shook his head as though he were a man long-suffering, and resumed packing. He folded an Armani shirt into a neat square and placed it on top of the other six he'd already packed in the suitcase. "You two are not amusing."
"Oh, we are, too," my mother countered. Her elbow poked my rib cage. "Aren't we?"
I agreed. "We're nothing if not amusing."
I think my father mumbled something about thanking God he was getting away.
Running away was more like it.
Because in the eyes of the public, Oscar Valentine, the country's premier matchmaker, had blatantly forsaken monogamy. He'd been caught, quite literally, with his pants down. And if he couldn't find everlasting love, then how could his clients? There was nothing like a scandal to obliterate his nearly perfect matchmaking track record.
The papers, especially the Herald, were having a field day. Reporters were still calling, trying to garner an exclusive interview with the King of Love himself.
His mistress-of-the-week had already sold out. Her interview hit newsstands last Thursday. It didn't take long for my father to suddenly decide he needed a little R & R.
In St. Lucia.
What the public didn't know was that my parents had been happily leading separate lives for close to twenty-five years now. Sure, they were married, but in name only, both agreeing that a renowned matchmaker seeking a divorce would be bad for the family business and, therefore, their bank accounts.
So my mother, Judie, had claimed the manor house in Cohasset, and my father, Oscar, had kept his penthouse condo in Boston's exclusive Waterfront district. They'd remained close friends, sometimes lovers, and constant companions.
They were great parents, if a bit odd.
No wonder I turned out as I did.
What the public also didn't know was that although the Valentines had been able to successfully matchmake for generations, they were hopeless at matching themselves. Every single Valentine marriage had failed. It was the family's best-kept secret.
My father zipped one suitcase, set to work on the other. He snapped his fingers. "Forgot my bathing suit."
"Lord, I hope it's not the thong," my mother whispered, shuddering. "No man over fifty should own one, let alone wear one. Someone should tell him."
"Don't look at me," I said.
My father popped his head out of his huge walk-in closet, stared at us. He raised a silver-streaked eyebrow in question and then he disappeared again. However, not five seconds had gone by before he said, "Now listen, Lucy." His voice rumbled. "I've left a detailed list with Suzannah. She'll get you settled."
I straightened. "Settled?"
Out popped his head again, like a mole in an arcade game. "Yes. Settled. At the office."
He sighed, heavy and deep. I'd heard that sigh many times in my life, starting with when I wanted to dye my blonde hair magenta all the way to when I told him I wanted to make it on my own, without the trust fund he'd set up for me. But mostly when I decided to forsake the family business and go into hotel management.
The magenta hair had been spectacular. Turned out, he was right about the hotel thing. It wasn't for me. Neither was my stint, among other things, as a dental hygienist, barista at Starbucks, personal assistant, or, more recently, day-care worker.
And sometimes I missed the money. Like when my rent was overdue. Like now.
"Are you listening, Lucy?"
I realized he'd been chattering away. "No."
He sighed again. Twice in one day. This was a personal record.
Pulling the strap down over my heel, I slipped off my shoes. "It's silly for me to take over the business. You know I can't —"
"You'll start," he glanced at his Cartier Roadster watch, "in an hour. Suzannah is expecting you. You have meetings with clients all afternoon."
Sure, I was currently between jobs, but I knew the family business would be better off without me. He had to know it, too. "What do you mean?"
"You," he said slowly, losing patience. "Meetings. What don't you understand, Lucy?"
"Me," I said slowly, echoing him. "Taking your meetings. That's what I don't understand. Haven't you been listening to me?"
He adopted his stern voice, one saved for my most egregious errors. "You, Lucy Juliet Valentine, have an obligation to this family."
"Now, Oscar." My mother fanned furiously, her cheeks fire engine red.
He held up a hand. "You know as well as I, Judie, that a Valentine must be at the helm of the business. Otherwise it will sink. Think of all the love lives out there that will flounder without our help leading them in the right direction. I've already missed too much work as is, with the attack and all. Someone needs to take over while I'm gone. And that someone is you, Lucy."
I rose and strode to the windows, the thick carpet squishing between my bare toes. Outside, the sun was losing its battle with a thick layer of clouds. Snowflakes whirled in a mesmerizing pattern, floating downward, disappearing into the dark choppy water of the harbor. Soon it would be Thanksgiving and then Christmas.
People hated to spend holidays alone. Business would be booming, all those lonely hearts looking for love.
Coming to me for help.
The thought turned my stomach. "How? You know perfectly well I don't have —"
He cut me off. "Fake it."
"Don't you think that will lose clients faster than someone else running the company?"
"The key to our success is in our genes. Our DNA. It has to be a Valentine running the company. You're it, Lucy. The last in a long line of Valentines — until you have children of your own."
For a second there, I thought he was going to lecture me about having babies. I heard enough of that from my grandmother, Dovie, every chance she got.
It was true every Valentine had the ability to matchmake. We'd been blessed with the ability to pair lovers for centuries. Rumor in the family was that the gift had been bestowed on an ancestor by Cupid himself.
But my dad left out one small detail.
Every blood Valentine possessed this gift except me.
Mine had been zapped right out of me by an electrical surge when I was fourteen, only to be replaced with an extrasensory talent of a completely different sort.
My mother set down the magazine, looked at me. "You don't have to do it."
"I heard that!" my father shouted.
"Glad your hearing wasn't affected by the infarction," she snapped playfully.
I loved the way they bantered with each other. Actually, if they weren't so busy pretending their marriage was a sham, they could probably make a decent go of it.
The mistresses notwithstanding, of course.
"Dammit! I can't find my swimsuit. Lucy?" He appeared, blinking dark brown eyes at me.
My mother shook her head, pleading with me not to do it.
I looked between the two of them, seeing my own eyes in theirs. I had my mother's slightly downward shape and a blend of their colors — a golden brown. I could see a little of myself in each of them, some traits I liked, some I didn't. But I knew one thing for sure. In a battle of begging, my father would win hands-down every time. It was the big, brown-eyed puppy-dog look that did me in.
"Oh, all right," I said to him.
He held out his hand, and I took it between both my own. In a flash, I saw the suit. "Third drawer on the right, smushed behind the stack of Playboy magazines."
His cheeks colored.
"Traitor," my mother murmured as he went in search.
Fighting the wave of dizziness that hit whenever I had a vision, I sank next to her on the down love seat. "Sorry. Are you all packed?"
"My bags are downstairs. We'll take the water taxi over to Logan."
"You don't have to do it," I said, echoing her words to me.
She tucked a strand of hair that had escaped my ponytail behind my ear. Tucking my hair had been a habit of hers since I could remember. "Who can turn down a trip to St. Lucia this time of year? I'd be a fool to say no. Plus, there's all that sand. I can't resist the temptation to tease your father."
"All right, but don't do anything I wouldn't do. And maybe you should have Dad take a blood test when you get to the island." I looked at the bed. "Maybe two."
She eyed me suspiciously, the golden flecks in her hazel eyes sparkling. "Is there anything you would do? You haven't had a date in three years."
"I've had plenty of dates."
"Just the ones Dovie's set you up on. Those don't count."
They really didn't.
"Maybe it's time to find someone for you, LucyD," she said, using her pet nickname for me.
"Why bother?" There hadn't been a single Valentine marriage that had escaped without divorce or separation. In our family the inability to stay happily wed had become depressingly known as Cupid's Curse. It was truly a painful irony — to have the ability to match ... everyone else.
My mother's nose twitched. It did that when she knew I was right but didn't want to admit it. She dropped her head onto my shoulder, cuddling. The gelled spikes of her edgy pixie-styled blonde hair pricked my cheek. "Better to love and lose than never love at all?"
"Good try, Mum."
"Aha!" Dad shouted, thong bikini in hand.
My mother straightened. "Had you, of all people, doubted her?"
"Not at all. But it still amazes me."
"It" being my ability to find lost objects.
My family liked to play up the Cupid part of our history, but the truth was that every single Valentine had been blessed with the psychic ability to read auras. A gift, generations ago, my family capitalized on by professionally matching lovers based on their colorful auras.
The ability has always been kept secret. No one within the family wanted to battle public perception. We knew of other psychics labeled charlatans and frauds, and great pains went into keeping the family name above reproach. Inquiries as to our success rate were simply brushed off as being too pedantic to answer. In turn, most thought my family snobby. Simply not true, but a notion that was fostered to keep curiosity at bay.
When the electrical surge transformed my aura-reading abilities into the gift of finding lost objects, a type of ESP, it was also kept quiet because one revelation might lead to another. Only a few within the family knew my secret. And only a few trusted outsiders knew about the auras.
My dad held out his hand again and said, "Passport?"
I took his outstretched palm, held it. Dizzying images flashed. "In your library. Top desk drawer, right side."
"Thanks, Lucy. Are you sure you're okay about taking over? I know I can be pushy —"
"Manipulative," my mother corrected.
He ignored her. "But the pay is good, plus you'll be doing your old man a favor."
"Lordy, not the guilt, too." Three thin gold bangle bracelets on her arms clanged as she shook her finger at him.
He shot her a look, then softened his gaze as he met mine. "Lucy?"
My rent was due. I had bills to pay. And besides, how long would it be for, anyway? How many love lives could I screw up in the span of a week or two? And maybe, just maybe, I could use this time to figure out what I really wanted to do with my life.
He pulled me into a hug, squeezed tight. "That's my girl. Everything will be okay. Just go with your instincts."
My instincts stunk, but I kept that tidbit to myself.
"You're welcome to stay here, as well. Closer to the office."
I thought about it for a split second before declining. I loved my cottage, despite the fact that I rented it from Dovie. Besides, if I lived here, I wouldn't be able to bring Grendel with me, since Dad was allergic to cats. "Have you spoken with Dovie yet?"
My grandmother had been vying to try her hand at matchmaking for thirty years but had been denied since she had married into the family and didn't share the Valentine gift. She wasn't going to take well to my being in charge of the business, since she knew full well I lacked any ability as well.
"I'll handle Dovie," my mother said, standing. Tall and pleasantly plump, she wore a flattering tunic top and dark denim jeans. She slipped her feet into gold ballet slippers and fastened her beautiful cream-colored cashmere wrap with a chunky gold broach.
My father zipped his last suitcase. I gave them both hugs, elicited promises to send postcards, and made a snarky comment about staying off the beaches.
"Don't look so grim, Lucy," Dad said, ignoring my jibe. "You're dealing with matters of the heart. It's not like it's life or death."
"I suppose you're right." But I couldn't help but feel that he was wrong.
Dead wrong.CHAPTER 2
Valentine, Inc., was located near the intersection of Beacon and Charles just on the outskirts of swanky Beacon Hill. Autumn leaves whirled down the street, bright wisps dancing in and out of traffic.
"There's nothing but brake lights ahead," I said.
"Right. Lunch." My stomach churned like rusty gears at the thought of food. I shifted on the leather seat, adjusted my lap belt. My father had loaned me his Mercedes, and the services of Raphael, his driver, valet, houseman, and all around go-to guy, for the time he'd be gone. At first I balked at the extravagance, but I figured if I had to come into town every day from Cohasset on the South Shore, Raphael would make my life just that much easier.
"Nervous?" he asked me.
I'd known him since I was three years old. In some ways I thought he knew me better than my parents did. After all, he'd been the one playing marathon games of Monopoly with me while my father was off at the symphony or various other events.
True colors are often shown during high-stakes games of Monopoly.
"It will be all right, Uva."
Excerpted from Truly, Madly by Heather Webber. Copyright © 2010 Heather Webber. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's 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.
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Meet the Author
Heather Webber grew up in a suburb of Boston, where she learned early on how to ride the T, skip rocks in the ocean, and root for the Red Sox. As a young mother, she tried her hand at writing novels and is now an Agatha Award-nominated author. She is the author of the Lucy Valentine novels—Deeply, Desperately and Absolutely, Positively—and the Nina Quinn mysteries, among other books. Heather now lives in southwestern Ohio with her high school sweetheart and their three children.
Heather Webber grew up in a suburb of Boston, where she learned early on how to ride the T, skip rocks in the ocean, and root for the Red Sox. As a young mother, she tried her hand at writing novels and is now an Agatha Award-nominated author. She is the author of the Lucy Valentine novels—Truly, Madly; Deeply, Desperately; and Absolutely, Positively—and the Nina Quinn mysteries, among other books. Heather now lives in southwestern Ohio with her high school sweetheart and their three children.
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I received a copy of Truly, Madly from Barnes & Noble as part of their Sneak Peek program. It's sort of a romance, mystery, paranormal combination with a touch of humor. Lucy is a great character who has a talent for finding lost objects, which she feels is practically useless when compared to her family's talent for finding true love as matchmakers. This is a fast, fun read with likable characters. A little predictable, but I enjoyed the journey. The romance aspect wasn't hot & steamy, but still interesting. The mystery wasn't Agatha Christie hard, but still had a twist. I'd like to see more of Lucy, watch her relationship with Sean to see where it heads, see if she decides to stay with the family firm, and learn more about her grandmother Dovie. Gave this a 4/5 rating as it was an enjoyable read, Ms Webber is a talented writer, and it left me wanting more! Recommend this book as a light, enjoyable read.
What a fun, enjoyable book! I received an ARC of this book as part of a first-reads giveaway. I am really glad that I did! This is the story of Lucy Valentine. She is a girl with a problem! Lucy comes from a long line of matchmakers. The ability to match make is literally in their genes. All of the members of her family can see the colors of people's spirits. Then, they find two people who's spirits match, and presto! You have a match. In fact, their matchmaking business has a 98% success rate. But as I said, Lucy has a problem. When she was a teenager, she was electrocuted, and now, she can't see the colors any more. Instead, she has a new "talent". Whenever Lucy touches someone's hand, if they are thinking about something that they've lost, she can see where it is. When a family issue forces Lucy to temporarily take over the family matchmaking business, she is terrified. How in the world can her odd talent help her with matchmaking? I loved how unpredictable this book was! There was some great romance, but certainly not the type that you usually read. Also, there was a fantastic mystery that literally had me guessing all the way to the end. I kept being sure that I knew what the outcome of the mystery would be, but I was completely wrong! This book had a bit of everything! Mystery, romance, humor, phenomenal characters that you can't help but love, and just a perfect dose of the supernatural. Give it a try! Just a little note. If you really aren't into supernatural or fantasy, you should still give this book a try. There is a supernatural element, but not a huge dose of it.
Truly, Madly by Heather Webber is the first installment of the Lucy Valentine series. It is a well written fun read with characters that are authentic and relatable. This romantic story with a paranormal twist fits well with current popular trends. The reader follows Lucy as she is convinced to help out with the family business, Valentine, Inc. a storied match making service. Lacking the fundamental quality (or some might say flaw) which has made the business successful, Lucy has little faith in her abilities. However, with the support and encouragement of life long friends and quirky family members, Lucy finds her stride and is able to join forces with the dreamboat upstairs as she solves mysteries, uncovers dead bodies, and saves her clients from the law. This is a great start and I'll definitely be watching for more to come.
Lucy Valentine came from a long line of matchmakers that had the psychic ability to read auras. As a teen, Lucy, was hit by lightning while on the phone and her abilities were jumbled, so now all she can do is find lost objects. That wouldn't be much of a problem, but Lucy finds herself having to take over her family's matchmaking business, without the ability to make matches. Will Lucy be able to successfully make matches? And what about her ability? Then there's the issue of the really gorgeous private investigator, Sean Donahue, who works upstairs... "Truly, Madly" was a delightful read. I fell in love with the main character and was enamored with her wit and charm. Lucy is the type of character that you wish lived next door to you - someone you could have over for coffee and sit and talk to. She has a quirky family and a heart of gold. So when she takes over her family's business, you really want her to succeed, and not just with the business but with her own personal romantic life as well. What made this book even more of a delight was I was expecting a romance, and I got so much more. Heather Webber spun a fantastic tale of romance and mystery with humor peppered throughout. What is even better is this is the first book of her new series. That means we will be able to get to know Lucy and her quirky family more, and hopefully see more of Sean in the future. I adored this story and will be looking for more of Heather's books!! A great read for everyone!
I have not read any of Heather Webber's other books,and was not expecting that "Truly Madly" would become my next go to "Series"for me.Unexpected,"Truly Madly" is a wonderful blend of suspense(a few moments of on the edge of my seat),paranormal(a chill came over me)and romance,realistic,and intense.Lucy Valentine could become Sookie"s next BFF.
This book was really cute and I loved the authors writing style. I am definitely looking forward to Heather's next novel. The characters were great and I loved the psychic abilities incorporated into the main character. I was fortunate enough to receive an advanced reader's copy and participate in an upcoming online discussion. The group that I am participating in is for Romance novels and I really felt this was not in that category, more like chick lit mixed with a little suspense, only a smidgeon of romance in here. I would recommend this book to any mystery/suspense/paranormal book lover
This delightfully engaging tale features Lucy Valentine, heir to the matchmaking business Valentine, Inc. The Valentines use their powers of aura reading (legendarily bestowed by Cupid, himself) to unite their clients in romantic relationships. Lucy, however, had an unfortunate lightning-related mishap as a teenager, and her psychic power now manifests as an ability to find lost objects. When Lucy's father needs to take a break from his business, Lucy apprehensively agrees to step in. Suddenly, she's making matches, and with the help of Sean, the studly PI upstairs, also investigating a possible murder. Lucy is a witty, charming and refreshing character, as are her friends and relatives. The narrative reads like a snappy, overly verbal television show. In fact, it would make a great television show, now that I think of it. The "will they/won't they" sexual tension of Lucy and Sean's relationship, the lost-object-mystery-of-the-week premise, the zany supporting characters. Yes, an excellent television show. ABC should option this. Immediately. My one complaint is that I had guessed the twist-y resolution to the whole murder mystery about halfway in, and that some of the other pairings seemed a little predictable, as well. But, I suppose it's impossible to be completely original. I did enjoy reading it very much, even though I knew what was going to happen, and I will be looking forward to the next volume in this series
Truly, Madly is a fast, enjoyable read with just enough mystery, romance and a bit of paranormal thrown in to keep my interest. I thought at first that this was a chick-lit type of story and I do not read many of those because I find that they do not hold my interest as I am not a thirty something woman no longer. But I thought what the heck and signed up for an advanced copy. I won and I am glad I did because I really enjoyed it. Lucy Valentine, the daughter of a professional matchmaker, at the age of 14 lost her ability to see auras, thus making it impossible for her to eventually be able to work in the family business of being a matchmaker. What she does have though is the ability to find "lost" items. This ability she has been able to keep to herself except for her family and close friends and she wants to keep it that way until circumstances keep this from happening. When a little boy goes missing she decides that she needs to help find him. When her father is involved in a scandal, he and Lucy's mother who aren't an item but are still good friends, decide they need to get away from all the gossip of her father's (Oscar) little indescretion. Lucy reluctantly agrees to step in and manage the company while they are gone. She gets involved in the cases and one of the clients comes to her asking if she would be able to find his lost love. When he introduces himself by shaking hands, Lucy sees a terrible vision, of something that has happened in the clients life and makes her wonder if he is perhaps responsible for what Lucy saw in her vision. So while in the process of trying her skills as a matchmaker and helping her client, Michael, and trying to find a little boy she gets involved in a murder mystery with the help of Sean Donahue, her upstairs neighbor at her office whom she also has had a vision about, they start investigating. As they become more involved in investigating they become more attracted to each other. To say too much more would ruin the story for you, the reader. The other characters in the story, Dovie, Lucy's grandmother and Lucy's friends Em and Marisol and Raphael round out the story nicely. There is humor, mystery, and romance enough to keep the story flowing smoothly to the suspenseful conclusion. I sometimes like to read a story that is light reading and one where you do not have to do a lot of thinking, just enjoy the story and I definitely did..
I usually enjoy a little magic in my books or TV. Truly, Madly reminded me of the canceled ABC series called Pushing Daisies; a little magic, a little mystery, and a little romance. The main character, Lucy Valentine, discovers that her 'special talent' of finding lost objects is useful in solving mysteries. A member of a matchmaking family, she also has to contend with the family business while her parents are out of town. I thought the premise was cute, and the novel was a good crossover between romance and mystery. Truly, Madly has the potential to become a charming little series.
Truly, Madly is a quick, fun read about a quirky gal who has some psychic abilities. She comes from a long line of matchmaking psychics but after an electrical shock she no longer has the same abilities as her matchmaking family. She now sees lost objects and sees scenes when she touches the hands of certain people. She is not too sure what to do with this ability. She has to take over the family matchmaking business due to some unpleasantries on her father's part. While doing so she stumbles across a mystery which needs solving. There is a hunky private investigator, a great mystery, a little romance, and lots of fun in this book. I loved Lucy Valentine even though sometimes I thought she made alot of trouble for herself by keeping secrets. All in all it is a most enjoyable read and I can't wait to read more of Lucy's adventures.
Truly, Madly is a unique blend of mystery, romance, and fantasy that is a pleasure to read. It is fun and fast-paced with interesting, believable characters, and unexpected plot twists. This is the first book in a new series by Heather Webber. I can't wait to read the next one.
My first love in the book genre is the chick lit. They're funny, entertaining and light hearted and it gives me that feeling of falling in love over and over again. My favorites are Louise Bagshawe, Cecelia Ahern, Jennifer Crusie, Libby Street, and Lauren Weisberger and now I have an new addition in the name of Heather Webber, this book is so good I decided to put Cat & Bones on hold, can you imagine?! I was really excited when I won the ARC at a contest. I haven't read a chick flick genre in a long time. The last one that I enjoyed reading was Seven Up by Janet Evanovich but this one was better, I'm sorry I am a fan of the paranormal and Lucy and her world definitely fell under that category. Her family came from the world famous Valentine Inc. they do match making as a profession, they are the real thing. It was said that Cupid himself bestowed their gift to one of her ancestors. But not Lucy - well not anymore, she lost her powers during an electrical surge 14 years ago. But this doesn't mean that she is a normal person now, no, she possess a different psychic ability; She can find lost objects. Lucy thinks it was completely useless for their family business but she surprised herself on what it can actually contribute not only for their benefit but to the people of her community as well. Lucy is a loveable character, she is independent, funny, strong and kind hearted. Sean is your perfect guy next door. oozing with sex appeal, helpful, and mysterious. The secondary characters played well too on this book, they added necessary colors and intrigue for the book. Dovie is certainly a unique grandmother. her meddling is both hilarious and annoying. Her best friends; Em and Marisol didn't play so much role in this book (or not enough scenes) but you get the impression that they are there when Lucy needs them. It was really a fun book. A Murder-Mystery-Chick lit rolled into one. It marks as an excellent start of a series, well developed and engaging characters and interesting plot. It was a cross between Stephanie Plum (investigative), Sookie Stackhouse (psychic powers) and Ryan Hadley (independence). A must read Valentine's month release.
This was a very fun and entertaining read! As other reviewers mentioned, don't expect Shakespeare but do expect a regular heroine with an interesting family and an even more interesting "talent". Lucy, the plucky heroine, is slightly "chick lit" like but she can find lost things just by touching someone! Shaking hands with someone has a whole new meaning. I didn't have high hopes for this book (bad cover art!) but I am happy to report that I was wrong! Even more surprising, the setting of the novel takes place in the next town so all of the normal location and traffic details made the story come alive! Good secondary characters, interesting mystery and a nice dose of romance. A great read for a long winter night or a snowy afternoon. Look for this author and her Lucy Valentine series - you won't be sorry. (This review is based on an advanced reader copy provided by the publisher.)
I truly madly loved this book. It is a comedy, romance & mystery all in one. If you need a good light hearted read that keeps you interested this is the one. And this is only book one of a series. You'll definitely want to come back for more. This is really a great author.
The Valentine family for generations has been the best matchmakers ever because of their uncanny psychic ability that the brood claims come directly from Cupid. However, unlike the rest of Valentine, Inc., Lucy Valentine's extrasensory skills differ ever since an electrical surge assaulted her well being. She cannot match auras of soulmates like her DNA should, but she is quite good at finding lost items. So the Boston native is stunned when her parents inform her she is now running Valentine, Inc. When a vision of a client leads her to believe he murdered his girlfriend, Lucy hires her upstairs neighbor private investigator Sean Donahue to search for the missing woman. Lucy fantasizes making love with Sean while he wonders if she is a clever coldhearted killer as she knows too much but also fears he is attracted to her. Meanwhile her grandmother plays matchmaker with Lucy as her "client" and ringless BPD Detective Chapman suspects her of homicide while she fears Sean's reaction to how she knows so much. Truly, Madly is Truly Scrumptious as fans will relish this delightful urban fantasy with a touch of humor, plenty of suspense and a strong cast. The heroine is great as she struggles how to best use her gift when her extended family have always been matchmakers and the hunk who fears he is half in love with a truly beguiling killer. Readers will relish this lighthearted paranormal whodunit. Harriet Klausner
I loved this book! Truly, Madly is one of the most unique books I have had the pleasure of reading in a long time. It's a great way to escape from everyday life and will leave you wanting more long after you've turned the last page. Lucky for us, this will be the first book in a series, because you cannot get enough of these characters. Highly recommended for anyone who loves mystery, romance, or both!
I loved Truly, Madly and still think about the characters long after I finished the book. This is a fast and entertaining read that will leave a smile on your face and keep you coming back for more. Great blend of romance, mystery, humor and woo woo. Characters are charming and Lucy's Grandmother Dovie is a real hoot. If you are looking for a feel good book, Truly, Madly is for you.
I love this book. I loved the character Lucy. She sounds like some of women who have doubts about ourselves and our talents. She is very likeable and interesting. I want to know more about her. She is searching for her place in life and finds it and may have even found her own love, Sean. I want to read her next adventure. I recommend this book. It is a quick read and very enjoyable. ReadingPatti
I'm usually not very big on the whole mystery romance thing, but I was a bored employee surrounded by advanced reader copies of books. So I started reading, and am surprised that I'm excited to go to work to read on my break tomorrow. I would especially recommend this to fans of Katie MacAlister and Mary Janice Davidson
This is a light-hearted mystery with a bit of romance,humor and ESP. This is not a genre I would normally read but I rec'd it through the sneak peak and LOVED it. I will be looking for the next book in the series.
I have nothing but glowing praise for this book! I absolutely LOVED it! TRULY, MADLY is a fast-paced, fun, mystery with a dash of romance thrown in. I would classify this book as a cozy mystery that is suitable for teens on up. The author has a very engaging and conversational writing style that will keep you immersed in the story for hours on end! The plot is well developed with an amazing cast of characters, including Lucy's eccentric parents, matchmaking grandmother, and two best friends with their own set of issues. Lucy Valentine is a fresh, fun character who has the unique psychic ability of being able to find lost objects. I am definitely looking forward to reading more in this series! According to the back cover, there will be at least two additional books in the series. DEEPLY, DESPERATELY will be out in August 2010 and ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY soon after. All in all, this is one of my favorite cozy mystery books! I highly recommend it for a quick, fun, and enjoyable read! If you like the "Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye" series by Victoria Laurie, then you will definitely like this book!
I absolutely loved this book! I was lucky enough to be selected to get the ARC when I signed up through FB, and I received it in the mail on a day I was ill with the flu. It really was the perfect fun, romantic read I needed! Lucy Valentine comes from a long line of psychics who can see and match people's aura's to their perfect mate's. So their family business is match-making! Only trouble is, Lucy had a freak accident as a girl and no longer sees auras. Instead, she has a pretty unspectacular form of ESP that has her feeling useless. In an effort to help her dad out with the business when he suffers a stroke, she gives running the business in his absence a shot. But she soon discovers her ESP has it's own quirks,a possible important use, and it leads her on a suspenseful chase to solve a suspected murder mystery. Along the way she meets Sean and possibly finds true love,but you'll have to read the book to see how, and why it's special, and if they really do have a future together. If you're looking for a romantic read with a little bit of mystery, a lot of fun, and that focuses more on relationship than sex, then this is a good pick. Though I wouldn't put it in the paranormal romance category, it does have an interesting (and humurous) psychic protagonist. Can't wait for the next one in the series! AND IT'S DEFINITELY A GREAT VALENTINE'S DAY BOOK GIFT :D
I so enjoyed reading "truly, madly". Even though I do read a fair amount of Romance and Mystery books, this particular one I would not have picked up on my own. I'm glad I had the chance to read this one. The story was easy to follow and the characters were likable and believable. Once I started reading, I found it hard to put down. Although at times it seemed like the romance took a back seat to the mystery, overall, it was a good story. The psychic aspect only added to it. I can't wait for the next one to visit again with Lucy Valentine, her family and of course Sean.
This book got me from the first paragraph. I didn't put it down until I finished. I read it as part of a sneak peek program and wasn't sure about a romance book but this put romance, quirky characters, and mystery all together. The characters are the type you can't wait to read more about and I can't wait until a sequel comes out. The author knows how to write to keep you interested and entertained. Also I believe this book could also be read by teens, of course that's up to the parents but I really think both adults and YA would love it.
The perfect book for a stay-inside cold winter day. Well, maybe a weekend.