Good morning, and welcome to another Thursday event, with lots of sparks flying as we share snippets about particular themes; and as we ponder some bookish questions.  Theme Thursdays is hosted by Reading Between Pages; and link up here for Booking Through Thursday.

Here’s our prompt for Themes:


Holidays always remind me of food, food and more food… (Don’t mention the calories).


I am looking forward to a lot of mouth-waterings.


My choice today is a review book from Amazon Vine called She Can Run, by Melinda Leigh.


Elizabeth was a young widow with two small children when she met Congressman Richard Baker. Handsome and wealthy, with a sparkling public image, Richard seemed like the perfect man to provide the security that Beth and her kids were craving. But when she uncovers a dangerous secret about her new husband, Beth realizes he will go to any lengths—even murder—to keep it. After barely escaping with her life, she and her children flee. They eventually make their way to a secluded estate in the Pennsylvania countryside, where Beth dares to hope she has found a safe place at last…

Forced into retirement by an unexpected injury, Philadelphia homicide detective Jack O’Malley is mourning the loss of his career when his uncle abruptly dies, leaving Jack to dispose of his crumbling country house. Unbeknownst to him, his uncle engaged a caretaker just before his death, a mysterious woman with two children and a beautiful face that haunts his dreams. Determined to know her, Jack begins an investigation into Beth’s past. When he uncovers the shocking truth, and a local woman is viciously murdered, Jack puts his own life on the line to keep Beth and her children safe.

She Can Run is a sexy, satisfying debut from award-winning author Melinda Leigh, packed with enough suspense and romance….


I had to keep turning those pages to find the “food” part…the MC has arrived at her destination, with her children, and there are several offers of food which she declines.  Finally:

“I bet you’re hungry.”

“Yes, ma’am,” Ben nodded.  His eyes darted in Jack’s direction for a second.  Katie stared at the floor.

“Then let’s get you some breakfast.”  With one eye on the children still standing near the doorway, Mrs. Harris pulled a frying pan from the overhead rack and called over her shoulder.  “Jack, shouldn’t you be getting ready?”

Beth poured coffee in a mug and took a sip.  After yesterday’s java binge, her stomach cramped in protest.  She set the mug on the counter. p. 21


And that’s all…no further descriptions of food.  Until a few pages later, when it’s lunchtime:

Rolls, potato salad, deviled eggs, and a plate of cookies joined the ham.  The kids dug in.  Clearly no one would go hungry as long as Mrs. Harris was in charge of the kitchen. p. 36


And here’s the Booking theme:

What’s more important to you? Real, three-dimensional, fleshed-out fascinating characters? Or an amazing, page-turning plot?

(Yes, I know, they are both important. But if you had to pick one as being more important than the other?

I guess I would have to choose characters.  I love plots, but without the three-dimensional characters that help me really connect to the story, it would be a little bit like flesh without bones, or vice versa.

To me, the characters are the main event.  I love the descriptions that help me visualize them, and I enjoy “seeing” their actions through the narrator’s POV.  Or in some cases, through several alternating POVs.

I like watching the character move through whatever is thrown at him or her…and here’s where the plot comes in.  But without the characters, it would be a play without actors.

So what do you think?

I hope you’ll stop by and share your thoughts.


  1. Wow!!! That’s some exciting food. I liked the lunch menu better.

    And I think I will go with the plot. Sometimes lousy characters do manage to carry a good plot for me. There have been times when the characters are spot on real and exciting, but when they have no story to utilize them completely.But again, I always think twice before picking the author again after a badcharacter book… Maybe it is a 60:40 ratio of plot vs characters 🙂


  2. I found this a difficult one to answer this week. I chose the page turning plot, but, only because of the book I am reading this week. The characters are fascinating enough, but the plot isn’t a page turner. Depending on which book I read next, I may choose the fascinating characters. But, all-in-all I think the book needs both.

    Thanks for the visit today.


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