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The Wedding Planner's Daughter


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About the Author

Coleen Murtagh Paratore is the author of the acclaimed The Wedding Planner's Daughter and its brand-new sequel The Cupid Chronicles. For younger readers, she has also written How Prudence Proovit Proved the Truth About Fairy Tales. She's a believer in community rent, Cupid, and the magic of Cape Cod. Look for Mack McGinn's Big Win -- in which two all-American sports-star brothers battle to be the best -- in Summer 2007. Learn more about Coleen at http: //


After moving often with her widowed, wedding planner mother Stella Havisham ("as glamorous as a queen"), Paratore's (How Prudence Proovit Proved the Truth About Fairy Tales) feisty young narrator Willa finally feels at home in the Cape Cod town of Bramble. The seventh grader can now spend time with her Nana, who owns a candy store in town; finds a kindred spirit in Mr. Tweed, a bookseller who supplies this voracious reader with books galore; and feels certain that classmate Tina will become her best friend. And she hopes that Bramble will be the place where she will finally find a father, a prospect that becomes brighter when Sam, a handsome widower and poet, moves in next door. Stella has never let herself get too close to any man since Willa's father (in one of the novel's numerous theatrical twists) died in a hot-air balloon crash the day after their wedding, yet the matchmaking girl thinks Sam is the one whose amour may just crack her mother's armor. The author laces her appealing tale with literary allusions (this Ms. Havisham has "great expectations" for her daughter) and with quotes from books Willa reads, and plays up the romance blatantly, with happy endings galore. A sweet little morsel. Ages 8-13. (Feb.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Gr 4-6-Willa's greatest wish is for her mother to remarry so she can finally have a father in this tale by Coleen Murtagh Paratore (S & S, 2005). Things seem to be falling into place when they finally move back to Cape Cod, where Willa develops a loving circle of friends and family. Her days are full of school, walking on the beach, discovering great books, and making friends. Her mother, a wedding planner, is busy planning spectacular parties as usual. The summer before Willa turns 13 is full of love and the usual preteen dilemmas. Her grandmother is seeing wonderful Mr. Tweed and Willa has her first double date-and her mother seems to be falling for Sam, Willa's English teacher and their next door neighbor. As the summer ends, everything begins to fall apart and they abruptly leave town, but Willa knows she must do something to avert disaster. Girls will understand Willa's hopes and anxieties in this satisfying novel that is full of thoughtful quotes, realistic feelings, and likeable characters. Actress Stina Nielsen narrates the story with expressive voices for each character. She conveys the feeling that Willa is telling her story to listeners like a secret best friend in a way that fits the story perfectly.-Teresa Wittmann, Westgate Elementary School, Edmonds, WA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

"This book is as sweet a confection as the cherry cordials its twelve-year-old protagonist is so fond of eating."

-- School Library Journal

"This smart and funny fairy tale stays hopeful and enchanting, even as it touches on the more difficult aspects of love. Romantic and real."

-- Kirkus Reviews

"A sweet little morsel"

-- Publishers Weekly

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