Publisher: Self Published
Author Website: http://tonyakappes.com
Buy Carpe Bead'em
*Book provided by the author for review*
Orphaned at a young age, Hallie Mediate was raised by her (slightly) crazy Great Aunt Grace on the wrong side of the tracks in Cincinnati. Hallie dreamed of escaping her hometown and never looking back. After putting herself through college, landing her dream job in Chicago, and starting a romance with her handsome running partner Bo Pompillio, life is finally exactly as she wants it.
That is, until she’s transferred back to the hometown. Not wanting her past to cross paths with her future, Hallie puts her relationship with Bo on hold.
When she arrives in town, Hallie finds crazy Aunt Grace rummaging through a dumpster looking for the “perfect” welcome home gift for her niece. That’s just the beginning. After that, Aunt Grace stays busy by dying her stolen poodle’s hair pink and leaving the dog on her apartment roof to pee, throwing bricks out the window at passing neighbors, and climbing every flag pole to kiss the ornamental eagle.
Hallie finds some sanity at a local jewelry-making class where she uncovers a hidden talent for beading. When her talent is discovered by a major department store jewelry buyer, Hallie realizes that what she had in Chicago might not have been her dream life after all.
When faced with the choice of moving back to Chicago and Bo or taking a leap of faith to start her own jewelry company (with Aunt Grace in tow), Hallie has to make a decision. Will she let her past and her future collide, or will she or keep searching for the happiness she may already have found?
What I thought:
Oh my goodness! I had a hard time putting this down. I was engrossed in the story from the moment I picked it up. Carpe Bead'em was such an enjoyable read. I don't delve into chick lit often enough.
The story was great. I don't know much about the fashion world, but I loved following Hallie through her job. The narration was perfect for me. The story wasn't overwhelmed with too much detail or too much inner dialogue, but held a perfect blend to make the story flow seemlessly.
I loved how Tonya Kappes was able to bring her characters to life. I loved reading about Hallie and her crazy Aunt Grace. It was a very endearing relationship, even if Aunt Grace did drive Hallie crazy just a bit. I struggled at not skipping ahead just to make sure everything works out for Hallie. I was on pins and needles while wishing and hoping she got the happy ending she deserved.
Tonya Kappes is a great writer. I loved the humor, friendship, growing pains, crazy late night calls and the pink boy poodle. I decided I don't stray out of the paranormal romance genre enough. This was a joy to read, even with it's sad moments (in which I did, in fact, need a tissue), and I highly recommend this.