Be Frank With Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson

Be Frank With MeBe Frank With Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As a debut novel, Ms. Johnson has knocked one out of the park! I can’t remember the last time I was so captivated by a book. I laughed, I cried, I read out loud to anyone within earshot, constantly saying, ” Listen to this!”. What a wonderful treat this book is.

Literary legend and recluse, MiMi Banning has only written one book, but it was a hugely successful one. And now she has to write another after becoming the victim of a Madoff type Ponzi scheme. She needs help and is very specific about what and who she wants. Picture a Housekeeper/Nanny/Driver/Assistant rolled into one quiet and discreet bundle. And this is where we meet Alice. Sent by the publisher to oversee Ms. Banning and her household.

As soon as Alice arrives, she is put to work as a companion to the author’s son, Frank, age 9 ( going on 40 ). Frank is a font of information on any and all subjects and lives by his own set of rules. He dresses like an actor from the 1930’s and has an outfit for every imaginable circumstance.
He has a razor sharp wit and nothing in common with his peers.

As MiMi shuts herself in her office to write, Alice is left to see to everything else. As she and Frank get to know each other, they develop a special bond that at times had me in tears and on the next page in stitches.

Each character is so well developed it would be hard not to love all of them as flawed as some were. I didn’t want the book to end!

I read a lot of books and it isn’t often that I come across one that just makes you smile just looking at it! This is one of those unforgettable stories that made me a reader and a book I will proudly keep on my shelves.

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