Three Decades of Lily

Romance - Suspense
182 Pages
Reviewed on 05/16/2015
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Diane C. Smyth was born in Rockville Centre, New York in 1961. After more than 20 years as an Intellectual Property Paralegal and single mom to sons David and Danny, I expanded my writing career from part time poet to novelist. I am inspired by incredible people to write about incredible people, and share insight into bonds of friendship and loyalty. I am also the author of In the Line of Duty-The Bravest appearing in Mythology of the Heart, part of Letters from the Soul, Copyright © 2002, which was dedicated to all of the unwavering individuals of September 11, 2001, and for which I received the Editor's Choice Award.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Roy T. James for Readers' Favorite

Three Decades of Lily by Diane C Smyth is the story of five women who, growing up in differing circumstances, each exciting in its own right, happen to join together in life and flourish. The story starts at the funeral of one of the five friends - Sheila, an epitome of hard work and struggle; Cassie, who worked hard to become a seamstress but reaches greater heights by her ambition; the self confident Sunny who is raised to the position of a store manager from the humble beginnings of an assistant; Liora, an adopted child who rose to become a name in the fashion world; and Emily, a talented girl from a flourishing background whose life has already become a playground with an unusual affair, complete the group. How chance events bring together each of them, how they find help from each other, and how they face the challenges of setting up an empire, is what unfolds through the narrative. The story ends with an unexpected and intriguing twist.

Three Decades of Lily by Diane C Smyth kept me fully immersed, the desire to know what is going to come next taking hold of me most of the time. I had a tough time not to turn pages before I finished reading the one in progress. This book is deeply enjoyable, and I found it natural to identify with many of the male characters of this story and, I suppose, the female characters, almost all of them strong personalities. Fast action and a deft narration make this a good read.

Heather Osborne

Three Decades of Lily by Diane C. Smyth is a women’s fiction novel chronicling the lives of five women of differing ages and experiences. Each shares a common thread, the fashion industry, and they end up coming together during Fashion Week in New York. Recognizing their individual strengths, they join forces to form Quei Forti, a unique conglomerate of all their talents in the fashion industry. However, their bonds of friendship will be tested by their past lives, as each is persecuted by a vengeful lover, bent on revenge on one of the five. Will they all be able to join together to protect each other, or will the worst happen?

Miss Smyth’s novel begins with stories about each of the five women, a unique way to commence a novel, but I enjoyed learning the backstories right away. I was a bit curious at first as to how the story would go, but began to recognize the common threads. I will admit some confusion from this method as well, having difficulty keeping track of the various backgrounds of each of the women. Afterwards though, I really began to get into the intertwining lives of all. I had some suspicions as well regarding Sheila, and how her daughter might have been closer than she thought. I do hope the author is planning a sequel, as the novel does end on a bit of a cliffhanger. A quick read with a touch of suspense, Three Decades of Lily by Diane C. Smyth is, I hope, the beginning of a longer series.

Gisela Dixon

Three Decades of Lily by Diane C Smyth is a contemporary fiction novel revolving around the lives of five women, and the laughter, joys, sorrows, friendships, and relationships that they share. Going hand in hand with the themes of friendship and loyalty are suspense, romance, and some fast-paced action as well. Cassie, Sheila, Emily, Sunny, and Liora are five women from various walks of life whose lives intersect in New York City during Fashion Week. Soon, they decide to open a fashion boutique and name it Quei Forti, or ‘Strong Ones’ in Italian, to represent who they are and what they can each bring to the business. The story unfolds as we learn about each one’s life, past, and romantic intrigues that add an element of mystery and suspense. The story is nicely woven with twists and turns, and keeps one on the edge of their seat.

Three Decades of Lily by Diane C Smyth is well written with a plot that is bound to satisfy almost any reader. The themes of friendship, solidarity, and loyalty are explored and the hint of suspense and the surprise twists are enjoyable. Although this is not strictly chick-lit fiction, it is certainly a book on women’s lives from the perspective of women. That being said, Three Decades of Lily is a book that anyone can enjoy because it is essentially about life, love, and relationships. I thought the writing style was direct and easy to follow, and the characters are very realistically portrayed. All in all, this is an enjoyable book.