cover image Midnight Promises

Midnight Promises

Sherryl Woods. Mira, $7.99 mass market (384p) ISBN 978-0-7783-1348-9

Sweet Magnolia fans won’t need a review, but those who don’t know Woods’s work shouldn’t start here; this sequel to 2007’s Feels Like Family depends on history for its emotional draw. Karen Ames, divorced with two kids, was won over to the idea of remarrying by Elliott Cruz’s sincerity and attentiveness. With a couple years of wedded bliss under their belts and the hope of adding to their family, things are good—mostly. Then Karen discovers that Elliott has committed their joint savings—their baby savings—to opening a new gym in a small town that already has two. Realistically, Woods portrays how fundamental differences between a couple flare in day-to-day interaction, then retreat to smolder until the next time. It’s a marriage story, not a romance, and there’s a lot of similarly bittersweet change going on among the cast of thousands in Serenity, S.C. This one, more than most, is a story for the fans. Agent: Denise Marcil, Denise Marcil Literary Agency. (July)