Susan Elizabeth Phillips = Super, Entertaining and "Ph"un
"Match Me if You Can" is fun, and often funny. Full of lively characters in an engrossing but not overly heavy tale, this novel is set in the same alternate Chicago as several of her other books. It features cameos by characters I'd met before, but doesn't rely on the reader knowing their stories. I think of it as a sort of a bonus to returning readers, but not a detriment to new ones. SEP delivers strong female characters who retain their femininity and deal with everyday issues like nagging mothers and old cars with panache and flare. From the first few chapters most readers will know exactly who ends up with who, but the getting there is so much fun that I found I couldn't put the book down. Only a grumpy husband who prefers to sleep with the light off kept me from reading through the night to finish it!
As I said, Match Me if You Can is new in hardback. If you like to buy your novels, go ahead and start at the beginning with some of the cheaper paperbacks. Here's a list I found on SEP's website. The Chicago books are all loosely related, but can be read independently. The other's are all stand alone stories.
The "Chicago Stars" books, with descriptions from the Author's website:
It Had to Be You by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
- The Chicago Stars story begins with Phoebe Somerville and Dan Calebow
Heaven, Texas by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
- Bobby Tom Denton and Gracie Snow
Nobody's Baby but Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
- Cal Bonner and Dr. Jane Darlington
- This is not an official Chicago Stars book, but continues the story of the Bonner family begun in Nobody's Baby but Mine. Also contains Ethan’s story
This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
- Conclusion of the Chicago Stars
Stand Alone Novels:
Ain't She Sweet
Kiss An Angel
Breathing Room is one of my all time favorite romance novels. Of the others listed here, First Lady, Kiss an Angel and the Chicago series are the ones I find to be the most memorable. This Heart of Mine in particular contains poignant scenes that stick with you for years.
I've only just discovered the author's website and signed up for her newsletter today. I've been reading these books as they come out for a good ten years now but never thought to look her up online. The internet creates an interesting sort oaccessibilityty and "new" fanbases for authors that was not available elsewhere. Apparently Ms. Phillips' fans call themselves "Seppies" and have a lively community presence on the web. Check out the website at the easily remembered: http://www.susanelizabethphillips.com/