Second Bookses

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Homeport - Nora Roberts Before there was a DaVinci Code, Nora Roberts wrote Homeport, a novel that, while still ensconced in the romance genre, has enough mystery and intrigue to also place it firmly in the category of mystery or fiction.::: Dr. Miranda Jones :::Homeport centers on Dr. Miranda Jones, the product of a well-to-do, old-money family from Jones Point, Maine. Miranda and her older brother Andrew both have their doctorates in areas of the arts, with Miranda's specialty being the dating and verification of art, particularly Renaissance bronzes. The siblings work at their family's Art Institute, with their estranged parents working in different areas of the world: their mother at another facility in Italy, and their father, an archaeologist, on digs all the time.When Miranda returns home from work one day only to be mugged in her own yard, a chain of events is set in motion that seemingly have no relation to each other: a bronze that appears to be Renaissance-era is brought to her mother's facility in Italy for her to test, another Renaissance bronze is stolen from the Art Institute, and Miranda begins receiving threatening faxes. How could all these events be related?As if all this turmoil isn't enough for one person to deal with, Miranda also finds herself dealing with her brother's long-standing drinking problem, the attentions of one Ryan Boldari of the Boldari Galleries who may be more than he seems, as well as the lifelong emotional neglect that she has suffered at the hands of her parents. All this ties up into a very messy package that has Miranda partnering up with the handsome and mysterious Boldari, jetting around the globe, and stepping way outside her usual comfort zone to solve all the little mysteries that end up being one huge mystery.::: Roberts at Her Finest :::This is definitely one of my favorite Nora Roberts books, by far. True to her reputation as an author who really learns about the subjects she writes about, the details of the scientific processes involved in dating art work makes you feel like you are actually learning something when you are reading the book, without making you feel like you are reading a textbook.Roberts also has a way with plot, and this novel is an excellent example. With a huge cast of suspects as well as several subplots, she manages to not lose any of them in the shuffle, providing enough character and plot development for even the minor cast to keep the momentum going while still giving the reader enough to feel involved.Miranda's romance with Ryan Boldari is neither the center of the novel nor neglected, as Roberts weaves it in with the mystery seamlessly. Homeport is a wonder to read, and I found myself going back and reading it a second and even a third time to find all the clues and hints that I hadn't picked up on the first time. If I had to find one fault with the book, it would simply be in the ending, where Roberts offers a vague wrap-up to one dangling thread that left me wondering.Homeport is a great read that should be viewed as more than just a romance novel.This review previously published at Epinions:

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