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The Shoe Challenge
Baby booties – Quite possibly the sweetest shoe on earth. Read a book about a secret baby or a book involving a pregnancy.
Cavanaugh’s Secret Delivery by Marie Ferrarella – heroine pregnant at start:
The h/h met when he found her in her car and ended up delivering her baby. He was then called away on a case and when he went to the hospital as promised discovered she’d already checked out. They met again a few months later when his boss assigned the investigative journalist heroine to shadow the vice detective hero. Many of the mystery plots in this series have stretched credulity, but this one was more ridiculous than usual. The heroine repeatedly put herself in unnecessary danger and even shot someone during a sting operation then blithely carried on while neither the hero nor any of the other cops batted an eye. Her daughter conveniently had a nanny to watch her so as not to interfere with the case or their alone time. Some fun moments few and far between, but generally a very disappointing read.

Penny loafer – This wardrobe shoe staple has been around since the early 1930s. Read a book that takes place in the 20th century.
Tangled Promises by Amalia James – published in 1982:
The heroine was a reporter for a literary magazine. She pretended to be a secretary to obtain a job with a reclusive author in order to interview him. The author’s son was screening prospective applicants. The heroine felt guilty for lying and told her boss the story would be an invasion of privacy. She went ahead with the ruse despite her reluctance as she knew they’d only publish the article with the author’s permission. The hero knew she wasn’t being entirely honest, but hired her anyway. The heroine referring to her complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica for information was oddly sweet (I’m old enough to remember pre-internet days, YMMV). The hero had a big secret of his own, but it was revealed fairly early on. As typical for the era, there were no POV scenes for the hero. His motivations were kept opaque as part of the plot. The ways the heroine’s reason for being there became known to various supporting characters played out unpredictably. There was a lot of ‘one step forward, two steps back’ with the romance, but it worked. The likeable heroine, an engaging romance, a fun cast of secondary characters, the Scottish setting, and an overall sense of charm made for an enjoyable read.

  • Easy Eighteen Challenge (The Whittler) – Novellas: 8 down, 10 to go…
  • The 18 in 18 Phonics Challenge: 12 down, 6 to go…
  • The Alphabet Challenge Variation : 15 down, 3 to go…
  • The Catchphrase Challenge: 13 down, 5 to go…
  • The Shoe Challenge: 13 down, 5 to go…
  • The 21st Century Challenge: completed!