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Family Blessings
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Returning to tiny Larkspur, PA, and the characters first introduced in No Place Like Home, Michaels spins another delightful holiday story of "Cisco and the Trips" (candy company founder and family matriarch Loretta Cisco and her adult triplet grandchildren). A bizarre November tornado carves a deadly path that levels Cisco's beloved house and leaves the town in mourning. But something even worse is happening-the Trips all seem to be having marriage problems, but, to Cisco's frustration, they won't talk about it. Secrets and lack of communication are at the heart of the problems, of course, but everything gets sorted out in time for a genuine family Christmas and Cisco's wedding to her longtime companion. Funny, lively, and filled with down-home charm, this sweet, family-and-community-centered novel will appeal to fans of Debbie Macomber and other contemporary Americana authors. Michaels, a New York Times best-selling author, lives in South Carolina. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

"Fern Michaels [is] so talented and versatile, she could be described as the Norman Rockwell of romance writing..." -- Winter Haven News Chief (FL)

Fanciful premises and implausible turns of events are the stuff Christmas fiction is made of, but Michaels takes matters too far in this contrived sequel to her 2002 Christmas novella, No Place Like Home, basing her story on a misunderstanding that could be cleared up in a 10-second conversation. Sara and Hannah, two of the three Cisco triplets, are perturbed that their hubbies are coming home later and later, and immediately become convinced that they're having affairs. The truth? Hapless Zack and Joel have bought an expensive boat to sail around the world and are afraid to tell their wives. Sonia, wife of third triplet Sam, has just left her husband-why? He's not ready to start a family, and she's accidentally pregnant. Does she simply tell him? Of course not. The six lovebirds bumble around misunderstanding each other against the backdrop of cozy, homey Larkspur, Pa., where neighbors help the triplets' grandmother rebuild her tornado-destroyed home. The flimsy premise and artificial drama suck all the charm out of the story, and while Michaels's devoted fans might pick it up out of habit, this soggy tale will frustrate most. Agent, Robert Gottlieb at Trident Media Group. (Oct. 19) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

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