Rarely do I decide to review a group of books instead of just one. And, while I believe each one of these books can stand on its own, readers will be so enthralled with the Enright family, they will want to read them all. Much like the wonderful family series by Nora Roberts, these books are to be savored as some of the best relationship novels of the 1990s.
DEVLIN'S LIGHT set on Delaware Bay is the story of criminal prosecutor India Devlin and the first Enright sibling, marine biologist, Nick. And although there is more of a mystery in this story as India attempts to find out who killed her brother, it's the relationship with Nick that's at the forefront.
WONDERFUL YOU, set in Chester Co, PA is tells Zoey Enright's story as she falls in love with Ben Pierce, a childhood friend. There are some light moments in this story when Zoey, would rather eat take out than cook herself, is required to prepare a few dishes in order to help demonstrate cookware in her job on-the-air at a home shopping network.
In MOON DANCE, Stewart tells the story of the youngest Enright, ballerina Georgia. Set in the Maryland countryside, we find Georgia who wants one certain barn as a dance studio, while her nemesis, Matt, has planned to use it as a veterinary clinic.
The settings of these stories are all so vividly described, it's hard to imagine they're not real places. Readers will want to visit Devlin's Lighthouse, Zoey's Garden, The Bishop Inn, and the farm at Pumpkin Hill.
A common thread running through all three books is the matriarch of the family, Delia Enright, bestselling mystery novelist, who loves her children but does interfere perhaps a little too much, but always in a caring manner. Many readers will wish they had a mother like Delia!!! Readers will also be happy to know that Delia gets a love interest of her own in MOON DANCE.
Mariah Stewart's books, like Nora Roberts' sibling sagas, are not about murder, espionage, or mystery (although each book has a bit of intrigue as well) but are instead about relationships - between a man and a woman, between a woman and her mother, between sisters. I can't think of many writers who can do this better. In all her books, strong secondary characters abound. She creates a world the reader is reluctant to leave after the last page is turned. Thankfully, readers can look forward to more of the Enrights in PRICELESS which will be out in 1999. It can't be soon enough for this reviewer. Reading each book has been like visiting an old friend.