By Sloane A. Williams
There’s nothing more valuable on a long flight than a good book, one you can bury yourself in. Lost in an engrossing page-turner, you can easily forget the cramped seats, taste-challenged food, and general unpleasantness of airplane travel these days.
A good read, whether on paper or e-book, is also a great companion while sunning on a Caribbean beach, or cozying up by the fire in a ski lodge in Utah.
With this in mind, FarewellTravels is introducing a new department – “Road Reads,” designed to point you towards some entertaining new books you’ll want to take along on your next trip. We’re proud to report that both our first selections are written by contributors to FarewellTravels.
Lynn Schnurnberger has offered her discerning opinions on a number of hotels and destinations for us. In her new book, The Best Laid Plans, she casts that same critical eye on a slice of New York City life ripe for exposure: the Upper East Side World of Wall Street money and Park Avenue privilege. The wives here spend more time getting facials and planning over-the-top galas, than holding down real jobs. It’s her depiction of this rarified world, where wealth and glamour hide the petty insecurities, and competitions laying right below the surface that Schnurnberger’s book shines. The ladies who lunch are like the kids you remember from high school, only with money.
The Best Laid Plans shows you just how fragile their world is. When the husband of one of these Park Avenue ladies reveals that he’s been unemployed for three months, the house of cards comes crashing down. It’s then that the seemingly dependant heroine of the story reveals she’s made of tougher stuff. Her solution to fast approaching insolvency is to trade on the talents she and her over-40s friends take for granted: their appeal to younger men. She opens up an escort agency consisting solely of cougars like herself.
This new take on the world’s oldest profession, and its impact on the ladies’ exclusive world is fun to witness. The Best Laid Plans has precisely the elements that make it chic lit at its best; colorful characters, intriguing plot, and a breezy writing style that adds flavor to this tasty dish. It is an ideal accessory to take on your next trip.
King of Hearts is a different kind of page-turner, a mystery thriller that grabs you on the first page, then takes you on its own suspenseful journey. Written by Tom Seligson, executive editor & publisher of FarewellTravels, the novel starts with a harrowing chase through a suburban park, a chase ending with the murder of a young and vivacious mother. The officer called to investigate the crime brings with him the street savvy of a former New York City detective, along with the emotional baggage of an Iraq War veteran, still coping with the demons he brought home with him.
What begins as a traditional small town mystery quickly becomes more international in scope; it’s a progressively more complex story, one that has its origins deep within the Iraq War itself. Two unsolved mysteries of the war – the whereabouts of one of the war’s most wanted criminals, and the spoils of the biggest bank robbery in history – along with the conspiracy behind them, all end up linked to this local crime.
What gives King of Hearts a resonance that distinguishes it from more traditional thrillers is the portrait it paints of Iraq War veterans. The cop is joined by a female veteran suffering from her own devastating injury. How the two of them help one another put the past behind them, while unraveling this complex intrigue makes this novel hard to resist. If you take it on a plane, you’ll find the flight goes by in a blink.