Book Chat: Birthright

Time to start a new adventure: Book Chats here on the blog.

You’ll have to bear with me as I figure out the best ways to do this. For now, I’ll add a different graphic to this post Monday through Friday (and if we need more, I’ll make it so).

The first book is Birthright. If you haven’t read it in a while here’s the quick summary:

When five-thousand-year-old human bones are found at a construction site in the small town of Woodsboro, the news draws archaeologist Callie Dunbrook out of her sabbatical and into a whirlwind of adventure, danger, and romance.

While overseeing the dig, she must try to make sense of a cloud of death and misfortune that hangs over the project-fueling rumors that the site is cursed. And she must cope with the presence of her irritating-but irresistible-ex-husband, Jake. Furthermore, when a stranger claims to know a secret about her privileged Boston childhood, she is forced to question her own past as well.

MARCH 23: First conversation point:  Is there anything you love — even with any discomforts — as much as Callie loves archaeology? 

MARCH 24: Lana and Tyler Campbell are the first locals Callie meets in Woodsboro. Not sure I like Callie’s philosophy about kids or her immediate nickname for Tyler more. You?

MARCH 25: Doug Cullen considering how and why his family unraveled so completely. The hard part of these sentences is you can feel for everyone involved. 

MARCH 26: I love a book in which I can’t wait to see what everyone is doing. For Birthright, watching Lana court Doug was so much fun.  Are there secondary characters you’ve rooted on as much as you did the main couple?

MARCH 27: And then Jake Graystone swaggers on the page with his smug walk (Callie’s words). Here we have an example of Love Talk, Callie and Jake style. What appealed to you about Jake?


30 thoughts on “Book Chat: Birthright”

  1. Reading! I have multiple chronic pain illnesses & can barely leave the house (even before self isolating) so reading allows me to go anywhere & everywhere & experience magick & adventures & love that I’ll never be able to experience in real life

  2. Just finished – again. It is one of my go-to books when I need a lift. If Callie rejected Jake, I’d snatch him up in a second. Love, love, love this story. At the top of my Roberts’ list of favorites.

  3. Love this book and reread two weeks ago. Going to start one of series, not made my mind up which one yet, choices choices choices. Maybe I should just stick my hand in the book cupboard and see what comes out first. I don’t have a house big enough for bookshelves as I have lots of books that I have collected for over 47 years and most are in big cupboard. The more Nora writes the more I will buy, same goes for Heather Graham, Sharon Sala,Maggie Shayne and loads more favourite writers.
    Everyone take care and keep safe.

  4. I’ve been so much into the ‘in death’ series I forgot to read Nora Robert’s novels. I just read: The Obsession, and good God, it’s my favourite Nora Roberts novel, I could never choose before, they are all so good. But this one tops the chart, of all books I’ve ever read, this one I can’t say enough about except that all my love photography has been the one passion in my life, but I’m agoraphobic, so I’m limited…..but his novel plus everything in it, the main story…I lived in it I loved it. And I will read it again and again. Bless you Nora!

  5. Thank you! I’ve added this one to my list. I’m an avid gardener and health issues over the past couple of years kept me away from it. Things are much better now and we are scheduling vacation time in the middle of May to rebuild the raised beds, dig out the privet that’s taken over, divide out the perennials, transplant the contorted filbert….

  6. We did monthly online bookclub meetings for years on the Life – In Death facebook webpage. Once a month for years until we got through the ID saga (or at least where it was when we caught up to it). You might look in the old archives (look in the Notes on the page for links) to see if any of the ideas will be of use to you. We had a blast with these. Hope y’all do too. Will you be doing only NR books or JDR as well?

    1. I think we’re good thanks. I figure we’ll experiment with Birthright, then discuss the next book. Probably will pull in the In Deaths but maybe jump around.


  7. Reading is escapism. I get so into Nora’s books, even if I’ve read it multiple times. I just finished reading Birthright (again!), and still love it!
    Currently in the midst of The Stars of Fortune trilogy (again). 😉
    Thanks Nora for all the hours of pleasure.

  8. Sewing, quilting, designing those projects and gardening. I also love reading which I believe is the only way to truly calm my over active brain. Favorite author is Nora if course.

  9. I’m with Kim. I have multiple autoimmune diseases that have impacted my physical abilities but Incan go anywhere and do anything through books. I’ve always loved to read but it has become even more important as I’ve become more physically challenged. I’ve been reading Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb books for years and love them all.

  10. Birthright was my “first” Nora after years of not reading her. When I read the Nora half of Remember When, I was struck at how much I enjoyed it. Much grittier, more to it than I remembered from the much earlier romances. Birthright was on the shelf at the library and I inhaled it within a day and have never looked back – I had a lot of Nora to catch up on! Gardening is my archaeology. I also paint and often wear a lot of it, but gardening is my grimy guilty pleasure. After 40+ years of apartment living, I’m enjoying backyard and porch gardening, even with an occasional start from a surprise spider (they make them big in the southwest).

    1. Paula- too funny! I am currently re reading Remember When. Love the mash up of JD and Nora!

  11. I didn’t care for Birthright when I read it but I kept the copy on the shelf. After all, it’s Nora! And not all titles by an author appeal; I’ve certainly learned that over the decades. But gals on the Romance Forum I participate in would mention it & others would rave right along with them so decided to read it again a year ago or so & I LIKED IT! I ENJOYED IT! Sometimes things just go that way, right?

    What is my archaeology? Reading is a major factor, of course! Otherwise, needlework, primarily counted cross-stitch & needlepoint, but other types do get involved such as weaving. Gardening is fun, even when I’m hoeing that grass that keeps trying to sneak in. Family get-togethers, esp. if we’re playing cards. Sometimes, baking gets in there as well! No one thing, just a good variety!

  12. For me, its reading. And I prefer to own the book. Something about a brand new book that I absolutely love. I’ve read Birthright several times now. And I love Callie and Jake. At one point in my life, I owned a book copy of every book Nora had written. Sadly, I lost most of them in a house fire. So I’ve started buying them all over again!! I’ve already gotten all of the In Death ones back. And I’ve made a lot of progress on the Nora ones!

  13. My “archeology” is home – indoor and outdoor’s – design, decoration, organization…
    I might even grade as an antithesis~of Callie; she’s no Martha Stewart let me tell you or Suzanne Cullen 😉… you can see it by the easy, no drama, way she searches a place to stay, the scene of the gifted bed.
    I love this book from first to last sentence. Not a “world” (archeology) I enjoy or have too much interest in but this book has so many layers and each more interesting and entertaining than the next that I would survive the desert island with it 😍

  14. Totally enjoyed Birthright. Do for a reread. My “archeology” is genealogy and historic research. Love to “dig” up information.
    Gardening, also “digging”, is a favorite. And, reading, the love of holding a book in my hands.

  15. I am a speech pathologist and all the time , effort and work is absolutely worth it when you hear that first word from a nonverbal child.

  16. My archeological substitution took me some time to decide. I’ve had to relinquish several beloved but messy hobbies (yoga, gardening) due to physical limitations. But the one that fits this best is sailing, as I gave it up years ago due to chronic sea sickness (lol). Sailing, like manning a dig, means dressing in your expensive foul weather gear and Sperry Topsiders or boots, stepping into a very cold shower and tearing up $100 bills. It means sailing so close on the wind that the pounding of the bow on the incoming waves makes you wish you hadn’t eaten lunch or dinner. BUT it’s hard to resist the beauty of the open ocean on a downwind reach with all the sails full and the dolphins escorting you over a beautiful blue green sea. That too is a slice of heaven. I’m really going to enjoy this reread and seeing the shared ideas. Thanks, Laura.

  17. I love to read better than anything. Started reading biographies in the 4th grade school library, thru High school with Nancy Drew and Cherry Ames, then started romantic fiction and have never looked back. I always have a book, now my kindle, so anytime I am in a long line I can read. Nora/JD is my most favorite author, but also like several others.

  18. I love to read but don’t make enough time for it. Being off work due to social distancing has given me lots of free time. I started re-reading Dark Witch yesterday and just bought Birthright on Audible to listen to while I take walks and tackle those deep cleaning chores I’ve been putting off. I’m not a super organized person but I like routine so even though I live alone I’m trying to have some sort of schedule and I build reading time into it to get away from the tv. Excited about the book chat!

  19. Not doing the whole discussion (FTR, this is a me issue at the moment, I do love the idea of reader discussions here on the blog).

    I just wanted to say Birthright is one of my favorites and overdue for a reread!

    One of the most memorable scenes for me was the Jaws theme bit. And the whole reveal about their not-quite-divorce.

  20. This is one of my favorites. Nora has such a gift for characterization. None of the characters, no matter how much in the background they are, are one-note. They are all fully realized, living breathing people. Romances and mysteries are my favorite genres and Nora manages to meld them seamlessly into her books. I also appreciate how the main couple are living their lives fully with work, family, friends, and that while the romance is an important component, it isn’t all that they are or all that they think about.

  21. My Archeology is Mathematics. Proofs can be beautiful (sometimes beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder). I revel in that beauty and appreciate a part of life in which I can be truly certain. Most of math is right or wrong: there is very little grey.

    Unfortunately, my Narcolepsy and mental health issues have robbed me of the ability to concentrate. These days reading fiction is a lot of concentration and I can only keep it up 10 minutes at a time.

    But remembering the strength of my avocation lets me appreciate that of others. I really connected with Callie. I actually envied her easy relaxed style with kids. I am much more stilted.

  22. So glad you added the quote about Doug’s struggle with his lost childhood. When I started my re-read it really struck me how impactful the prolog was!! Nora’s strong character development is really on display in this book. Plus her talent giving us such adorable children who do what children really do! There are so many excellent plot lines in this book. Plenty of tension and yet a laugh along the way (Jaws theme!).

  23. What I love about Jake- total smart ass sarcasm, masking his real feelings. He’s got it going on!

  24. Finished reading Birthright. Excellent plot. Love the various couples and all the inter-relationships and interactions. Adored Ty-Rex. Nora writes children as well as she writes the adults. I wasn’t sure who the villain was right up to the reveal – great suspense. Another wonderful read from Nora.

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