2009: #42 – Tribute (Nora Roberts)

tribute Book #42 was Tribute by Nora Roberts.  The back of the book reads:

Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley is a long way from Hollywood. And that’s exactly how Cilla McGowan wants it. Cilla, a former child star who has found more satisfying work as a restorer of old houses, has come to her grandmother’s farmhouse, tools at her side, to rescue it from ruin. Sadly, no one was able to save her grandmother, the legendary Janet Hardy. An actress with a tumultuous life, Janet entertained glamorous guests and engaged in decadent affairs – but died of an overdose in this very house more than thirty years earlier. To this day, Janet haunts Cilla’s dreams. And during waking hours, Cilla is haunted by her melodramatic, five-times-married mother, who carried on in the public spotlight and never gave her a chance at a normal childhood. By coming east, rolling up her sleeves, and rehabbing this wreck of a house, Cilla intends to find some kind of normalcy for herself.

Plunging into the project with gusto, she’s almost too busy to notice her neighbor, graphic novelist Ford Sawyer – but his lanky form, green eyes, and easy, unflappable humor (not to mention his delightfully ugly dog, Spock) are hard to ignore. Determined not to perpetuate the family tradition of ill-fated romances, Cilla steels herself against Ford’s quirky charm, but she can’t help indulging in a little fantasy.

But love and a peaceful life may not be in the cards for Cilla. In the attic, she has found a cache of unsigned letters suggesting that Janet Hardy was pregnant when she died – and that the father was a local married man. Cilla can’t help but wonder what really happened all those years ago. The mystery only deepens with a series of intimidating acts and a frightening, violent assault. And if Cilla and Ford are unable to sort out who is targeting her and why, she may – like her world-famous grandmother – be cut down in the prime of her life.

This was a mixed-bag for me. The romance part was great… Nora Roberts still knows what she’s doing there.  I liked Cilla, and I liked Ford, and I really liked them together. But some parts of the book were lackluster.  I didn’t particularly care for Cilla’s dream visits with her grandmother, and I thought the harassment could have been a little more creative. How many different ways can a “Katie” doll be defiled?  But, though I did figure out who Janet was having an affair with pretty early in the story, the big bad guy was a big bad surprise.

Page count: 464 | Approximate word count: 150,555

2008: Curse of the Spellmans (Lisa Lutz)
2007: The Fiery Cross (Diana Gabaldon)
2006: The Footprints of God (Greg Iles)
2005: Into Thin Air (Jon Krakauer)

Used in these Challenges: 100+ Reading Challenge 2009; 2009 eBook Challenge; The 999 Challenge; A-Z 2009 Challenge;

2 thoughts on “2009: #42 – Tribute (Nora Roberts)

  • April 14, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    Nora Roberts is hit or miss for me, but I’d be interested in this one just because of the setting.

  • April 18, 2009 at 10:26 am

    I think this is a Nora Roberts I have not read, I love her books.
    I will have to check it out. Thank you for the review


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