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4.5 out of 5
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  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    Sassy, witty and intriguing.

    "We don't hide from our problems. We take 'em head on." While Magnolia, "Maggie", may have ran from her problems when she was 18, she is now facing them head on like her Momma raised her to. Her life has been shaped by a terrible event that happened on her graduation night. An event that she doesn't remember except for the feelings it provokes. She returns home after 10 years and has many relationships to mend and rebuild, starting with her Momma. She is immediately thrust into a murder investigation, becoming the prime suspect. While trying to clear herself of the current dilemma she has found herself in, she is starting to remember what happened to her that dreaded night that changed her life. Maggie is a strong, independent woman with sass and attitude. Yet, underneath she is still a vulnerable, scared girl who just wants her Momma to love and comfort her. As always with Denise's books, the characters are well developed, the story intriguing and mysterious, yet full of wit and humor. You are pulled into the story and feel like you are one of the characters alongside Maggie. I didn't want to put the book down. When I wasn't able to read, I found myself thinking about the book and even dreaming about it. So many questions went through my mind. What had happened that night? Who done it....then and now? Who can she trust? While the Rose Gardner Mystery Series holds a special place in my heart and will always be my favorite series of Denise's, this new series is giving it a run for the money coming in at a very close second. I received an ARC (advanced readers copy) of this book in exchange for an honest review.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    Either Center Stage or the next headline

    ~~I received this in exchange for my honest opinion~~ There has only been two other series by this fabulous author that I have waited semi-patiently for, and now I can tell you that this is the third series that I will devour. Set in Franklin, TN Magnolia just wants to get away from everything. But sometimes, what you are running from in the first place has a tendency to come back and bite you in the kiester. Where do I even begin with this fabulous book? I have waited oh so patiently for Denise to finish this book and for it to be released! I was lucky enough to get an early ARC so I dove right into it and made sure that I didn't miss any part of it. The writing in this new series is amazing. There are parts that just rip you to shreds, but then there are other parts that you just want to give big ol' hugs and tell her that everything is going to be OK. Denise has a way to make you fall in love with every character that she has ever written. Magnolia is no different. You will fall in love with her and you will want to be her best friend. If you love Denise's' writing you need to get this book Now!!!!
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    Center Stage

    A very good book. I couldn't put it down. It kept me on the edge of my seat. On to the next in this series to find out more.
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    need more stars

    WOW! I just want to start with I don't know how Denise has done it but this book just wow. I wanted to read the end halfway through. I wanted all the information at one time. I couldn't put it down. This book reads fast. I made notes lets hope I cover the basics. We meet magnolia at the beginning broken. Her Broadway career a flop. Head held low she is back home waiting on her Mama to take her in. I am still waiting on the back story for dear ol' mom. If things can't get any worse our Maggie finds she has added to her list of things this small town is going to remember. A dead body. One thing is for sure is in a small town people never forget the past. They just talk about it differently as the years go by. I can't believe her brother Roy. I think he has something to do with the past as well. I'm trying to decide on Colt. Did he have something to do with the murder? Is he wanting to be a friend? MY thought is he undercover for something(maybe brother related) and wants to help Magnolia with the murder thing. Maddie the exbestfriend. She is a number. I have mixed emotions on her. I think there are three stories from the past we need to figure out. The cop Brady. He lived in the same town as her just in different circle can he be trusted? I really have hope he will be a good cop boyfriend in the next book. HINT. I hope to see after the brat past Emily will truly be a friend. I'm glad she has found Belinda. She seems to be a person I would want as a friend. I'm going to end with this book really did hold me until the end. It did hold my emotions and left me wonder what next? I did go through the end wondering if there was a hint that it was the end. I will have a book hang over for the next week. I know I haven't covered everything but I hope I covered the basics as to why you need this book in your life.
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    Wow!❤️

    WOW! Talk about super suspenseful! This book sucked me in and didn't let go till I was finished and my mind is still trying to piece it all together. Magnolia Steele returns home after her career took a fall quite literally on the stage. Unfortunately she is not home but a few hours before she becomes a suspect in a murder. On top of that the past that forced her to leave is threatening her now in the present. There are many twists and turns that will leave you guessing. There are many questions that I hope are answered in September in Act 2! Loved this book!!! DGS has the beginning to yet another amazing series on her hands!
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