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Audio books available through the Taylor Community Library:

“The Paris Orphan”

by Natasha Lester

When Jessica May arrives in Europe to cover the war as a photojournalist for Vogue, most of the soldiers are determined to make her life as difficult as possible.

Soon three friendships change all that.

Martha Gellhorn encourages Jess to bend the rules, Dan Hallworth keeps her safe in dangerous places and most important, the love of a little orphan named Victorine gives Jess strength to do the impossible.

But as in all things success will come at a price. Now decades after World War II, D’Arcy Hallworth arrives at a beautiful chateau to curate a collection of famous wartime photos by a reclusive artist. It’s the opportunity of a lifetime, but D’Arcy has no idea that this job will uncover decades of secrets that, once revealed, will change everything she thought she knew about her mother, Victorine, and alter D’Arcy’s life forever.

“Akin”

by Emma Donoghue

Noah Selvaggio is a retired professor and widower living on the Upper West Side. He was born in the South of France and his heart has always remained true to France.

Soon he will embark on his first visit back to Nice since he was a child, bringing with him a handful of puzzling photos he’s discovered from his mother’s wartime years.

Just as he is about to leave, Noah receives a call from social services. He is the closest available relative of an 11-year-old great-nephew he’s never met, who urgently needs someone to look after him. Out of a feeling of obligation, Noah agrees to take Michael along on his trip.

Much has changed in this famously charming seaside mecca, still haunted by memories of the Nazi occupation. The unlikely duo, suffering from jet lag and culture shock, bicker about everything from steak frites to screen time. Noah gradually comes to appreciate the boy’s wit. Michael’s ease with tech and sharp eye help Noah unearth troubling details about their family’s past.

Soon, both come to grasp the risks people in all eras have run for their loved ones, and find they are more alike than they knew.

“The Behavior of Love”

by Virginia Reeves

Doctor Ed Malinowski believes he has realized most of his dreams.

A behavioral psychiatrist, he is now the superintendent of a mental institution and finally turning the previously crumbling hospital around. He also has a home he can be proud of and a fiercely independent, artistic wife, Laura, with whom he hopes to someday build a family.

Into this perfect vision of his life comes Penelope, a beautiful, young epileptic who should never have been placed in his institution and whose only chance at getting out is Ed. She is intelligent, charming and slowly falling in love with her charismatic, compassionate doctor.

As their relationship grows more complicated, and Laura stubbornly starts working at his hospital, Ed must weigh his professional responsibilities against his personal ones and find a way to save both his job and his family.

“Coming Home for Christmas”

by Raeanne Thayne

Elizabeth Hamilton has been lost. Trapped in a tangle of postpartum depression and grief after the death of her beloved parents, she couldn’t quite see the way back to her husband and their two beautiful children, until a car accident stole away her memories and changed her life. When she finally remembers her husband and children, she is worried that they moved on without her.

That she’d missed too much.

That perhaps she wasn’t the right mother for her kids or wife for Luke, no matter how much she loved them.

Now, seven years later, Luke finds her in a nearby town and brings Elizabeth back home to the family she loves, just in time for Christmas. Being reunited with Luke and her children is better than anything Elizabeth could have imagined. As they all trim the tree and bake cookies, making new holiday memories, Elizabeth and Luke are drawn ever closer.

Can the hurt of the past seven years be healed over the course of one Christmas season and bring them the gift of a new beginning?

“If Only I Could Tell You”

by Hannah Beckerman

Audrey’s dream as a mother had been for her daughters, Jess and Lily, to be as close as only sisters can be. Now, as adults, they no longer speak to each other, and their two teenage daughters have never met. Audrey just can’t help feeling like she’s been dealt more than her fair share as she’s watched her family come undone over the years, and she has no idea how to fix her family as she wonders if they will ever be whole again. If only she had known years ago that a secret could have the power to split her family in two, and yet, also keep them linked.

Now, as hostilities threaten to spiral out of control, a devastating choice that was made so many years ago is about to be revealed, testing this family once and for all. Once the truth is revealed, will it be enough to put her family back together again or break them apart forever?

“Nothing Here to See”

by Kevin Wilson

Lillian and Madison were unlikely roommates and yet inseparable friends at boarding school. Then Lillian had to leave the school unexpectedly in the wake of a scandal, and they’ve barely spoken since.

Until now, when Lillian gets a letter from Madison pleading for her help.

Madison’s twin step-kids are moving in with her family and she wants Lillian to be their caretaker. There’s a catch, however: the twins spontaneously combust when they get agitated, flames igniting from their skin in a startling but beautiful way. Lillian is convinced Madison is pulling her leg, but it’s the truth.

Thinking of her boring life at home, Lillian figures she has nothing to lose. Over the course of the humid, demanding summer, Lillian and the twins learn to trust each other, and stay cool, while also staying out of the way of Madison’s husband. Surprised by her own ingenuity, yet unused to the intense feelings of protectiveness she feels for them, Lillian ultimately begins to accept that she needs these strange children as much as they need her – urgently and fiercely.

Couldn’t this be the start of the amazing life she’d always hoped for?

“The Other Windsor Girl”

by Georgie Blalock

In post-war Britain, Princess Margaret captivates everyone, not only with her fashion sense but also her biting quips.

The royal socialite, cigarette holder in one hand, cocktail in the other, sparkles in the company of her glittering entourage of wealthy young aristocrats known as the Margaret Set.

Her outrageous lifestyle, however, conflicts with her place as Queen Elizabeth’s younger sister.

Can she be a dutiful princess while still dazzling the world on her own terms?

This isn’t a glamorous time for The Honorable Vera Strathmore. While writing scandalous novels, she dreams of living and working in New York, and regaining the happiness she enjoyed before her fiancé was killed in the war. A chance meeting with the Princess changes her life forever.

Vera amuses the princess, and soon, Vera gains Margaret’s confidence and the privileged position of second lady-in-waiting to the princess. Thrust into the center of Margaret’s social and royal life, Vera watches the princess’s love affair with dashing Captain Peter Townsend unfurl.

While Margaret, as a member of the Royal Family, is not free to act on her desires, Vera soon wants the freedom to pursue her own dreams. As time and Princess Margaret’s scandalous behavior progress, both women will be forced to choose between their status, duty and love.

“Ribbons of Scarlet”

by Kate Quinn

Sophie de Grouchy believes in democracy, education and equal rights for women, and marries the only man in Paris who agrees. Emboldened to fight the injustices of King Louis XVI, Sophie aims to prove that an educated populace can govern itself.

But one of her students, Louise Audu, is hungrier for bread and vengeance than learning. When the Bastille falls and Louise leads a women’s march to Versailles, the monarchy is forced to bend, but not without a fight. The king’s pious sister Princess Elisabeth takes a stand to defend her brother, spirit her family to safety and restore the old order – even at the risk of her head.

When fanatics use the newspapers to twist the revolution’s ideals into a new tyranny, even the women who toppled the monarchy are threatened by the guillotine. Putting her faith in the pen, Manon Roland tries to write a way out of France’s blood-soaked Reign of Terror while Pauline Leon and Charlotte Corday embrace violence as the only way to save the nation.

With justice corrupted by revenge, all the women must make impossible choices to survive, unless unlikely heroine and courtesan’s daughter Emilie de Sainte-Amaranthe can sway the man who controls France’s fate, the fearsome Robespierre.

“Strands of Truth”

by Colleen Coble

Harper Taylor is used to being alone. After all, she grew up in one foster home after another. Oliver Jackson finally took her under his wing when she was a runaway teenager, and now Harper pours her marine biology knowledge into Oliver’s pen shell research.

But she never stopped wishing for a family of her own. So when a DNA test reveals a half-sister living just two hours away, Harper is both hopeful and nervous. Over warm cinnamon rolls, Harper and Annabelle find striking similarities in their stories. Is it just a coincidence that both their mothers died tragically, without revealing Harper and Annabelle’s father’s name?

Oliver’s son Ridge still sees Harper as a troubled teen even all these years later. When Oliver is attacked, Ridge and Harper find themselves working together to uncover dangerous secrets that threaten to destroy them all.

They must unravel her past before they can have any hope for the future.

“Wrapped Up in You”

by Jill Shalvis

After a lifetime on the move, Ivy Snow is an expert in all things temporary – schools, friends and way too many Mr. Wrongs.

Now that she owns a successful taco truck in San Francisco and has an apartment to call home, Ivy’s reinvented life is on solid ground. She’s guarded against anything that can rock it. Like the realities of a past she’s worked hard to cover up, especially where Kel O’Donnell is mentioned. Kel screams “temporary.” Now if only her heart would listen.

Kel, an Idaho sheriff and ranch owner, is on vacation, but Ivy’s a reason to give his short-term plans a second thought. Best of all, she’s a tonic for his untrusting heart, burned once and still in repair. When Ivy is past intrudes on a perfect romance, Kel fears that everything she’s told him has been a perfect lie. Now, if only Ivy’s willing to share, Kel will fight for a true love story.

Jeanie Sluck is director of the Taylor Community Library.