Friday, May 27, 2016

#BookReview - From Bags to Riches


From Bags to Riches: A Jessie Stanton Novel

By: Sandra D. Bricker
Publisher: Abington Press Nashville
Publication Date:March 2016
ISBN: 978-1-4267-9323-3
Reviewed by: Diane Lunsford
Review Date: May 24, 2016

Sandra Bricker takes the reader on a journey that spans from the glitter of L.A. to the Bayou of Louisiana in the third installment of her Jessie Stanton Series: From Bags to Riches.

Jessie Hart has scruples and work ethic. She's spent a lifetime rising from her humble beginnings in Louisiana and made a success of her Adornments boutique in southern California. Just when she thought she had it all, life began to unravel. The man she thought was her husband and her ever after turned out to be nothing more than a con. Turns out Jack Stanton wasn't even her husband. The law has more than a few issues to resolve with him and through it all, he vies to win her back. Maybe once all the 'misunderstandings' are out of the way, he'll marry Jessie for real this time. However, the one roadblock Jack didn't see coming was Danny. It seems he's won Jesse's heart over for good and if Jack Stanton wants her back, it's going to take more than words to succeed.

After appearing before the magistrate and winning the first round of her battle to get her life back, Jesse walks out of the courtroom a liberated woman with her birth name intact and any reference to Stanton a distant memory. When a celebrity stylist approaches Jessie with the pitch to make a reality show of her life and Adornments success as the backdrop, Jessie's fruit of her labors may very well be paying off. This is to say before she receives word that her beloved grandfather has been diagnosed with cancer and it's time to go back to the Louisiana home she worked so long and hard to escape.

This is the first of this series I've read by Ms. Bricker, and actually, the first novel I've read by her. I found From Bags to Riches to be an engaging and solid read. In my opinion, the sign of an accomplished writer is to demonstrate his or her ability to lay out the basics of the story early on and use the real estate of the pages ahead to solidify plot. Ms. Bricker has done so superbly and does not disappoint. Her characters are believable and while the title is somewhat of a predictable play on words, Bricker's style plays out in a way to provide ample twists and turns to discount predictability. There is intentional pace in how Ms. Bricker feeds the storyline to her audience and the infusion of terrific scenery to support the eventual outcome that provides the reader with a comfortable engagement throughout. After reading From Bags to Riches, Ms. Bricker has convinced me it is time to go back and read more of her work. She is no stranger to pen and paper and has demonstrated hands down, she knows how to spin a good read. Well done Ms. Bricker. I am a fan.

Quill says: From Bags to Riches is the perfect companion for a lazy summer afternoon with nothing more to do than read a good book.