Susan Elizabeth Phillips is the gold standard for women's fiction -- an award-winning, bestselling phenomenon whose remarkable talent for blending belly laughs and tears with heartfelt, passionate, ingeniously conceived romance has made her one of America's most beloved authors. The Susan Elizabeth Phillips magic is vibrantly alive, and it's on display in her long-awaited hardcover debut.This Heart of MineMolly Somerville knows she has a reputation for trouble. She "did give away her fifteen-million-dollar inheritance, but, hey, nobody's perfect.Still, if anyone has an almost perfect life, it's Molly. While her Daphne the Bunny children's books could be selling better, she loves her cramped loft, her French poodle, and her career creating the fictional animals who live in Nightingale Woods.She even loves her sister, Phoebe. True, it was a little tough growing up in her shadow. Phoebe is beautiful, blissfully married, and the owner of the most successful professional football team in America. But who other than your sister knows you're about to do something drastic every time you change your hair Yes, Molly's happy about almost everything...except
Veteran romance writer Phillips (First Lady; Lady Be Good, etc.) makes her hardcover debut with this consuming story of a star-crossed children's-book author and a football player. At 27, Molly Somerville is a struggling writer who eschews the inheritance left by her father, founder of the Chicago Stars NFL team, now owned by Molly's sister, Phoebe Calebow, and her husband, Dan, who act as Molly's surrogate parents. Creator of a series of Daphne the Bunny books, writer for a teen magazine and the perfect playmate for her nieces and nephew, Molly is still growing up she even has a crush on Kevin Tucker, the handsome, reckless Stars quarterback. By coincidence, Molly and Kevin end up at the Calebow's vacation home, where they share an intense night that produces ill feelings and a pregnancy. They reluctantly marry, but shortly thereafter Molly miscarries. After a few months' separation, Kevin asks her to accompany him to a campground he recently inherited where he spent many unhappy childhood summers. He aims to sell the land, but as he watches Molly's wit return with her health, he finds himself changing his mind about the place and her. Snippets of Molly's writings serve as playful foreshadowing of the storybook plot, some elements of which are old hat the heiress who gives away her money, a long-lost mother. Don't be fooled by the dusty title, however; this one is pure up-to-the-minute entertainment. Agent, Steve Axelrod. (One-day laydown, Jan. 23) Forecast: Phillips is the only four-time recipient of Romance Writers of America's Favorite Book of the Year Award, and her most recent novel, the mass market First Lady, hit paperback bestseller lists. With a big and smart push from Morrow, including a nine-city author tour, this book stands to be that rarity: a bestseller on national hardcover lists by a first-time writer to those ranks. A Harper Audio and large-print edition will be issued simultaneously. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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January 31, 2002
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Excerpt from This Heart of Mine by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
"Let me get this straight," Jodie Pulanski said. "You want to give Cal Bonner a woman for a birthday present."
The three offensive linemen, who were spending the November evening sitting in the back booth at Zebras, the DuPage County sports bar favored by the Chicago Stars football players, all nodded at once.
Junior Duncan gestured toward the waitress for another round. "He's going to be thirty-six, so we wanted to make this extra special."
"Bull," Jodie said. Everybody who knew anything about football knew that Cal Bonner, the Stars' brilliant quarter back, had been demanding, temperamental, and generally impossible to get along with ever since the season started. Bonner, popularly known as the "Bomber" because of his fondness for throwing explosive passes, was the top-ranked quarterback in the AFC and a legend.
Jodie crossed her arms over the form-fitting white tank top that was part of her hostess uniform. It didn't occur to either her or any of the three men at the table to consider the moral dimensions of their discussion, let alone notions of political correctness. This was, after all, the NFL. "You think if you get him a woman, he'll ease up on all of you," she said.
Willie Jarrell gazed down into his beer through a pair of thickly-lashed dark brown eyes. "Sonovabitch been kickin' so much ass lately, nobody can stand being around him."
Junior shook his head. "Yesterday, he called Germaine Clark a debutante. Germaine!"