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For more than three hundred years, Bluff House has sat above Whiskey Beach, guarding its shoreâ€”and its secrets. But to Eli Landon, itâ€™s homeâ€¦ A Boston lawyer, Eli has weathered an intense year of public scrutiny and police investigations after being accused ofâ €”but never arrested forâ€”the murder of his soon-to-be-ex wife. He finds sanctuary at Bluff House, even though his beloved grandmother is in Boston recuperating from a nasty fall. Abra Walsh is always there, though. Whiskey Beachâ€™s resident housekeeper, yoga instructor, jewelry maker, and massage therapist, Abra is a woman of many talentsâ€”including helping Eli take control of his life and clear his name. But as they become entangled in each other, they find themselves caught in a net that stretches back for centuriesâ€”one that has ensnared a man intent on reaping the rewards of destroying Eli Landon once and for allâ€¦
About The Author Nora Roberts is the number-one New York Times-bestselling author of more than 200 novels, including The Witness, Chasing Fire, The Search, and Black Hills and many more. She is also the author of the bestselling
futuristic suspense series written under the pen name J. D. Robb. Roberts has more than 400 million copies of her books in print.
Biography Not only has Nora Roberts written more bestsellers than anyone else in the world (according to Publishers Weekly), sheâ€™s also created a hybrid genre of her own: the futuristic detective romance. And thatâ€™s on top of mastering every subgenre in the romance pie: the family saga, the historical, the suspense novel. But this most prolific and versatile of authors might never have tapped into her native talent if it hadn't been for one fateful snowstorm.
As her fans well know, in 1979 a blizzard trapped Roberts at home for a week with two bored little kids and a dwindling supply of chocolate. To maintain her sanity, Roberts started scribbling a story -- a romance novel like the Harlequin paperbacks she'd recently begun reading. The resulting manuscript was rejected by Harlequin, but that didn't matter to Roberts. She was hooked on writing. Several rejected manuscripts later, her first book was accepted for publication by Silhouette. For several years, Roberts wrote category romances for Silhouette -- short books written to the publisher's specifications for length, subject matter and style, and marketed as part of a series of similar books. Roberts has said she never found the form restrictive. "If you write in category, you write knowing there's a framework, there are reader expectations," she explained. "If this doesn't suit you, you shouldn't write it. I don't believe for one moment you can write well what you wouldn't read for pleasure." Roberts never violated the reader's expectations, but she did show a gift for bringing something fresh to the romance formula. Her first book, Irish Thoroughbred (1981), had as its heroine a strong-willed horse groom, in contrast to the fluttering young nurses and secretaries who populated most romances at the time. But Roberts's books didn't make significant waves until 1985, when she published Playing the Odds, which introduced the MacGregor clan. It was the first bestseller of many. Roberts soon made a name for herself as a writer of spellbinding multigenerational sagas, creating families like the Scottish MacGregors, the Irish Donovans and the Ukrainian Stanislaskis. She also began working on romantic suspense novels, in which the love story unfolds beneath a looming threat of violence or disaster. She grew so prolific that she outstripped her publishers' ability to print and market Nora Roberts books, so she created an alter ego, J.D. Robb. Under the pseudonym, she began writing romantic detective novels set in the future. By then, millions of readers had discovered what Publishers Weekly called her "immeasurable diversity and talent." Although the style and substance of her books has grown, Roberts remains loyal to the genre that launched her career. As she says, "The romance novel at its core celebrates that rush of emotions you have when you are falling in love, and it's a lovely thing to relive those feelings through a book."
Good To Know Roberts still lives in the same Maryland house she occupied when she first started writing -- though her carpenter husband has built on some additions. She and her husband also own Turn the Page Bookstore Café in Boonsboro, Maryland. When Roberts isn't busy writing, she likes to drop by the store, which specializes in Civil War titles as well as autographed copies of her own books. Roberts sued fellow writer Janet Dailey in 1997, accusing her of plagiarizing numerous passages of her work over a period of years. Dailey paid a settlement and publicly apologized, blaming stress and a psychological disorder for her misconduct.
Reviews Publishers Weekly
This spellbinding contemporary from romantic fiction doyenne Roberts (The Perfect Hope) explores the centuriesold secrets of a New England seaside home. Eli Landon is suspected of murdering his adulterous wife, but thereâ €™s no evidence to convict him. Needing to escape his old life, he returns to his familyâ€™s ancestral home of Bluff House, along New Englandâ€™s Whiskey Beach. Eli is caught off guard by his attraction to Abra Walsh, the houseâ€™s beautiful caretaker. When Abra is attacked by a mysterious intruder, a private detective starts asking questions about Eli, and he decides that he will never find closure until his wifeâ€™s killer is caught. The mysteries behind the murder of Eliâ€™s wife and the suspicious incidents at Bluff House are very creatively combined with the budding romance between Eli and Abra, who must face their past demons before they can embrace the possibility of a future together. Roberts enthralls the reader with enigmatic characters and effortless plotting from the first page of this masterfully crafted novel. Agent: Amy Berkower, Writers House. (Apr.) Kirkus Reviews
A year after his wife was murdered, Eli Landon is leaving Boston for a fresh start in his family's coastal ancestral home, possibly with Abra, the beautiful housekeeper he meets there who is determined to help him clear his name and reclaim his life. Former defense attorney Eli Landon has lived under a cloud of suspicion since he found his murdered wife in their shared home on the same day they'd publicly argued over their impending divorce and her ongoing affair. While no charges have been brought against him, a dogged police detective has hounded him to the point of harassment, and he's lost his job, most of his friends and his sense of place in the world. Moving into his family's historical estate on Whiskey Beach to take care of the house while his grandmother heals from an accident in Boston, Eli devotes his energies to expanding a modestly successful writing career, attempting to write a novel. Meeting Abra, a local part-time housekeeper/massage therapist/yoga instructor/jewelry designer/waitress is an unexpected bonus, especially when she brings her healing energy to Eli's wounded spirit. But something is not right at the homestead, and a string of accidents and crimes follows Eli to the coast. The longer he stays, and the closer he grows to Abra, the more convinced he is that in order to find peace and have a chance for happiness, he'll need to fight back, solve an ancient family mystery and figure out who murdered his wife. Roberts brings her inimitably smooth writing skill, excellent characterization and textured plotting to her newest romantic suspense, which plays out as much a character drama with suspense elements as a crime procedural, since the buildup to and motive for the crimes is fairly languidly paced, though compelling. A sweet, sexy romance with an intriguing historical family mystery that bleeds into a modern-day crime spree, casting suspicion on an innocent man. Library Journal
Having been wrongly suspected of his wife's violent murder and with his law career in shreds, Eli Landon leaves his Boston life and heads for Whiskey Beach to write, sort things out, and take care of the family home, Bluff House, while his grandmother recovers from a fall. But spirited, intuitive yoga expert and housekeeper Abra Walsh is a totally unexpected flash of light in his gloom, and as they work together to unmask the true killer, they find a loving, healing relationship neither had thought possible. VERDICT With faultless plotting, flawless character development, and a remarkable ability to draw readers into her fictional world, Roberts delivers another dazzler. Sleuthily inclined readers might figure out the real killer's identity, but it won't detract from the impact of the story as readers will already have fallen in love with the characters and immersed themselves in the setting. Roberts (The Perfect Hope) lives in Keedysville, MD.
Not my favorite. She spent too much time reminding my to make the bed, clean the house, and do my yoga. I could read a self help manual for all of that. I bought the book because it was a Nora Roberts.
Eli and Abra are well developed characters. I enjoyed their road to romance. Bluff House was a mysterious wonderful character in and of itself. I normallly love Nora's triliogies and J.D. Robb novels the best but this was a good solid stand alone novel.
Love having a male protagonist. Story moved along briskly and I could not put the book down. In classic Nora style she told a story about coming out of the dark and finding the light. I loved every minute of reading it. Nora Roberts is the only author I have ever read who can make me laugh out loud when I read.
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