Thursday, April 8, 2021

Curse Queen (Forbidden Forest #4) by Amber Argyle

 


A warrior enchantress. An unrequited love. A brand new fairytale...

The path of a warrior enchantress is bathed in blood and magic.

Born to one of the most powerful families in the kingdom, Eiryss lives a life of luxury and magic. Until her father commits the ultimate act of treason.

Treason that sparks a war.

The life Eiryss knew is over. Her one-time friends are gone. All but Ramass. And if he would just look at her - touch her - the way she longs for, she might be able to bear it. But his heart belongs to another. There is only one path for Eiryss now: become a warrior enchantress and fight for what's rightfully hers. And if the powers that be deny her, well...

If they won't give Eiryss magic, she'll steal it.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Wow, okay.  So, this book is the fourth book in this series and really should be read in order.  Even though this story is set in time before the rest of the books, it will have spoilers and trust me when I say you don't want that.  Nope, better to read this series in order and be spoiler free.

I took me a quick minute to remember what this book was.  I didn't realize (or remember) that this book was set back, back, back in time, before the other books in this series.  I was a bit confused at first, thinking I had missed something.  Only one character name was etched into my memory (Ramass) but it all came back to me quickly. 

This is the story that started it all.  Good versus evil, light versus darkness.  There was literally a battle through the whole book.  This author is so good at crafting characters who are complex and flawed but have such a gravitational pull to them.  I literally couldn't look away.  I became invested in the story quickly.  It is on the darker side.  There is heartbreak, pain and devastation throughout but there is also a tiny thread of hope, friendship and strength.  Eiryss is definitely a strong woman who keeps getting thrown down (stomped on, lied to, beaten) but keeps getting up.  She just doesn't ever give up.  How can you not admire that?

I'll admit that here, at the end, I am a bit sad.  This part of the tale isn't happy.  Engaging, interesting, yes.  Happy, no.  Happy comes later in the story but wow, what a journey.  I've been reading books by author Amber Argyle for a long time because she is so good at this dark fantasy type of book.  It's different from most things I read and I really like that.

Content:  violence, peril.  Kissing.  Intimate relations behind closed doors.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Tuesday, April 6, 2021

In Times of Rain and War by Camron Wright

 


During World War II, an American soldier encounters a German woman living a secret life in bomb-blighted London.

In September of 1940, the Blitz had begun. Like other British civilians, Audrey Stocking is determined to survive, except she isn’t from England. She is a German—a young Jewish woman with a fake passport and a nearly-perfect British accent, trying her best to blend into the city. Her days are kept busy working for the Woman’s Voluntary Services to evacuate British children into the countryside, saving them from nightly bombings over London. But she also writes secret letters addressed to her father’s factory back home. Audrey longs to be reunited with her father and younger brothers in Germany, but she isn’t holding out much hope. If the bombs don’t get her, British Military Intelligence will. And then there’s the paralyzing nightmares and flashbacks—something from her past she can’t quite remember. When an air raid leaves an unexploded bomb wedged in the floor of Audrey’s flat, an American soldier training with Bomb Disposal Company 5 is a welcome sight.

Lieutenant Wesley Bowers arrived in England the day the Blitz began. He knows the average life expectancy of soldiers disarming bombs is ten weeks, and not all of the men in his unit will survive. Wes struggles with the idea of losing men who are starting to feel like family. Although he’s committed to being a soldier, he grapples with the thought of death. Meeting Audrey, an attractive, intelligent, and caring British girl has been the one bright spot during the war’s unending bleakness. Wes has a girl waiting for him back home, but he’s never met anyone like Audrey. There’s an immediate connection between them, and they open up to each other, sharing their innermost feelings. Will he still feel the same if he discovers the truth about her identity? Even Audrey doesn’t know the whole truth. Not yet.

In Times of Rain and War is a gripping and heartbreakingly beautiful story about the strength and resilience of the human heart and spirit, reminding us there is always hope in hard times.


Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres and I really love books set during WWII.  My grandparents lived through this war in England and in fact, had a bombing the night before their wedding.  My grandma ran down the stairs of their house, worried about her cake that they had saved sugar rations for, crying "my cake, my cake!"  She didn't even know if my grandpa would make it to the wedding.  The bombings made it difficult to get to the church from where he was stationed because the roads were demolished.  He hitchhiked, and finally made it.  Late, but grandma didn't give up.  Thank goodness.  See why I love books like this?  It feels like I know a bit of my own history better.

I haven't ever read anything about the many men who defused the many bombs during WWII that fell but didn't explode.  Crazy stuff.  Absolutely crazy.  But how important they were to saving so many people.  It was amazing to read about and I learned so much.  I love when a book does that for me.

This book was heartbreaking.  War is so devastating.  I wish all people, everywhere could avoid it.  There were many moments of hope and love and friendship, but this story was a bit heartbreaking overall.  I'm grateful though, for the reminder of all I have to be grateful for and all those that deserve to be remembered for giving up so much, sometimes everything, for others.  Here is my favorite quote:

" The soul is a tender and complicated thing, and it can bruise easily, but I've learned it's after fighting through our deepest moments of distress that our greatest strength are found."

Content:  war violence, death, peril.  One kiss.  A couple instances of mild swearing.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.




Monday, April 5, 2021

Danger on the Loch by Paige Edwards

 


Raised by a cold and distant mother, photographer Paisley Clark has spent her life daydreaming about the father she doesn’t remember. Paisley’s dream turns to reality when a DNA test brings her in contact with the mysterious man. With her financial situation a disaster and her childhood friend James Pressley-Coombes working across the pond in Scotland, Paisley is emboldened to accept her father’s invitation to visit him.

She arrives in the Highlands only to discover that she isn’t Paisley Clark at all but a titled lady, the daughter of a Scottish duke. Despite the warm welcome and the comfort of James’s presence, dangerous undercurrents surround Castle Rannoch, her father’s estate. Overwhelmed, Paisley takes refuge in her camera and James’s steady presence to provide a sense of normalcy in her rags-to-riches transformation. But her once-easy relationship with James is changing, deepening beyond friendship in a surprising twist of events. Before they have time to examine their feelings, Paisley inadvertently captures a shocking image in one of her photographs—a picture worth killing for.

* Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

Paige Edwards is an author whose books I have come to anticipate and enjoy because romantic suspense is one of my favorite genres.  Oh, and props to the cover art.  It's another beautiful one by this publisher.

Paisley has quite a few big changes come her way all at once.  I thought she was a likeable character with a kind heart and a good head on her shoulders.  Her relationship with James was more friendship based as they have known each other most of their lives but it made for a strong, dependable foundation.  The relationship progressed but the plot was responsible for the forward momentum of the story.  I liked how little nuggets were given along the way to draw suspicion to different characters but I always had my eye on the true culprit which I'm sure was meant to be.  The nuggets and intense moments all came together for one final explosive ending.  It was a fun ride.  I think one of things that I really loved was the ending.  After the big finale, the author brought things back down and wrapped the characters and plot up with a nice bow.  It left me with a warm fuzzy feeling.  I love happy endings after rough roads.

I also loved traveling in Scotland for this book.  It's a place I'd love to visit one day and this book made me want to bump it up on my travel list but you will not find me eating Haggis.  😂

Content:  kissing, peril, violence.  Some mild Christian elements.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Thursday, April 1, 2021

The Crown of Rosemund by Michele Ashman Bell

 

Anduron, 1498

The king and queen are dead, murdered by one who will stop at nothing to rule. But the young princess—Rosemund—has survived, spirited deep into the forest by her parents’ most trusted advisor. There, she finds refuge in a small cottage and a new life, one in which she must play a role that will ensure her survival. Soldiers are combing the countryside searching for the lost princess, and they will not rest until she is found—and eliminated.

Rosemund’s strength grows as she trains for battle and endures the hardships and dangers of peasant life. When chance brings Maxwell, a young man from the nearby village, into her life, Rose finds in him an ally and a friend. As her sixteenth birthday approaches, the time has come for Rose to reclaim her birthright, and in a court controlled by a vengeful new ruler, she must play a deadly game of politics in order to seize the throne that is rightfully hers.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

I really love the cover of this book and I have to say that this publisher is crushing it with novel covers overall.  They are so unique and connected to the story, just like this one is.  I'm a fan.

The Crown of Rosemund is a mixed bag for me.  I guess I was expecting something a bit more than I received.  The first half of the story is slow.  So slow and so repetitive.  It was a struggle sometimes to stay connected.  I didn't ever feel an emotional connection to any of the characters so the plot really had to be the primary motivator for me to read.  The second half of the story got better and picked up in pace a bit.

I really liked the transformation of Rosemund from insecure, sheltered princess to a strong, resilient young woman, ready to fight to be queen.  The last bit of the book was my favorite because it was where Rosemund really steps into her role as leader and queen.  She bands people together and takes her castle and her position back.  There are some good fighting scenes and it felt climactic for sure.

I'm not really sure of the target audience for this book.  After reading, I would say the younger set because of the age of Rosemund (about 16) and how the story progresses.  The romance isn't really a romance, just a friendship for most of the book.  Everything stays pretty surface and as an adult, I was really hoping for more.  So, maybe this book would be better suited for the younger YA crowd?  That would make more sense.

3/5 stars for this book.

Content:  peril, some violence and fighting.  One chaste kiss at the end.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Tuesday, March 30, 2021

The Temporary Roomie (It Happened in Nashville #2) by Sarah Adams

 


What happens when you have to play nice with your greatest enemy? Revenge.

Drew Marshall may have let me move into his spare bedroom while my house is being renovated, but don’t think for one second his kindness comes without strings. Big, ugly, fake relationship strings.

That’s okay, though, Dr. Andrew. I’ll agree to your terms, move into your house, and act like
your girlfriend when the big day comes; but I also plan to make your life miserable—make you pay for what you did to me.

I may not be good at forgiving or forgetting, but I’m excellent at getting even.

Get ready to laugh until you cry with this sizzling, hilarious, closed-door romantic comedy!


Excitement.  Giddy, happy, excitement.  That's what I'm feeling right now.  I just had THE MOST FUN reading this new book by Sarah Adams.  It's no secret that I love to be entertained when reading and I love when I am left with an emotional high.  This book gave me so many smiles, quite a few giggles and all the sizzle of attraction.  It was so yummy.  

The beginning feud, especially on Jessie's side, seemed a bit extreme.  I could understand Drew's side, retaliation for something he didn't fully understand, but Jessie was a bit over the top.  The evolution of pranks was hilarious though.  Oh man.  I'm smiling just thinking about it.  Enemies to lovers done to perfection.  There is a reason this author is at the top of my favorites list.  And the ending?  Yeah, it was pretty great.  Like I said, I'm on a high and it's going to be tough coming back down to Book Hangover.

I could not put this book down.  I stayed up waaaaaay into the night to finish it and didn't regret it at all.  I'm ready to read it again!!  😁  

This book is on KU if you have that.  

Content:  a few instances of mild swearing.  Kissing- making out, behind doors intimacy with no details but you know it happens.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book but have already pre-ordered my own copy.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Thursday, March 25, 2021

Springtime Love at The Homestead Inn: Country Boy & City Girl Romance (The Haven Hills Homestead Inn #1) by Kimberly Krey

 

 

She's a billionaire thrust into hiding. He's a wealthy cowboy seeking solitude. When the two are roped into running his granddad's inn, they're captured by an unforeseen romance. But will the secrets of her past destroy their blooming love?

--------------------------

Five billionaire siblings are sent into hiding when their mafia-linked granddad makes a plea bargain that puts them at risk. Through a relocation program, they're sent to help run The Homestead Inn.

Now each must hide their secret past, adapt to their unexpected future, and learn how to answer the call when love comes knocking.

 * Amazon * Goodreads

I always love reading books by author Kimberly Krey!  I've been reading them for years and she is an author I can depend on for sizzling sweet romance.  This is the first book in a new series and I'm excited about it!  This book kind of sets the stage for the series and introduces us to a cast of characters- siblings- who are hiding away in the protection program. 

First up is Andie, the only girl in this family.  She and her brothers get off to a rocky start with Trenton who definitely has a chip on his shoulder.  He's confused and feeling a bit left out and betrayed by his grandfather who harbored a LOT of secrets.  There is an excellent cast of secondary characters that help give this book a sense of home and family.  I loved the developing friendship and love between Andie and Trenton.  It was a slow burn kind of thing but once that first kiss came- hold on to your hats, friends- things really picked up steam.  

This was a fun, romantic escape.  Easy reading, left me feeling happy kind of book.  I'm looking forward to the next one!

Content:  kissing

- I picked this book up on Kindle Unlimited!

 

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Dreamer (The Dream World Chronicles #1) by Camille Peters

 


Eden has a secret: she has the ability to see and enter others’ dreams, a most inconvenient power when one is an outcast living in a magic-phobic village and yearning to fit in. When she accidentally exposes her powers, Eden discovers that her uncanny abilities connect her to the Dream World, home to the magical beings responsible for creating dreams, and the first place Eden has felt she truly belongs.

Standing in her way is the formidable Dream Council, which questions whether she should remain in their world. Unless Eden can prove she’s truly a Dreamer, she’ll lose all her magical powers and be forced to return to Earth. Proving herself turns out to be more difficult than she anticipated. When Eden is assigned to create dreams for a newborn mortal, her opponent—the talented Nightmare Darius—makes it his personal mission to uncover her secrets, which could result in her permanent banishment.

Eden struggles not only to outwit her foe, but also to prevent herself from falling in love with him, all while finding herself entangled in mysterious events as the Nightmare Realm begins to eclipse the Dream Realm, threatening not just her chances of remaining in her new home, but the balance of the universe itself. As Eden fights to fit into this world of dreams and magic, she finds herself on a journey of self-discovery that will take her down a path that forces her to confront an unknown darkness within herself, leading her to realize she’s not who she initially believed, nor does she belong where she thinks she does.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Happy new release to this book and this author!

First, I have to shout out my love for the cover of this book.  It so perfectly represents what is inside and I think it is beautiful.  

I have to admit that fantasy books can be a bit hit or miss for me.  I thought the premise of this book sounded cool though so I wanted to try it out and I've read books by this author before and enjoyed them.  This book is a YA book, with a target age of 12-18.  That sounds about right.  The characters come across young.  Even the older ones.  So yeah, target range is spot on except this book is LONG.  Over 400 pages, which makes it not really great for most 12 year old's (and sometimes even adults like me!)  There was a LOT of description and the plot moves forward slowly.  If you love descriptive books, you will love this one.  

The author clearly put a lot of thought and effort into this idea.  It is creative and imaginative.  I liked many parts of it.  I didn't have a lot of emotional investment in the characters but the story concept and the cover?  Two thumbs up.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Saturday, March 20, 2021

Rough Stock (Lost Creek Rodeo #3) by Heather B. Moore

 


Life on the road is good . . . Until he meets her and realizes what he’s missing.

Westin Farr has been focused on one thing. To match his dad’s perfect 100-point record in professional bull riding. It’s getting closer; he can feel it. Although he misses his dad, life is good. Westin spends his days on the road, his nights bull riding, and his free time with his former college rodeo buddies—the Original Six. But when he meets the feisty Silvia Diaz, Westin finds that his lofty goals might not be so important after all.

The last thing Silvia wants to do is ‘work on herself’ at Broken Hearts Ranch in the tiny town of Lost Creek, Texas. And the last thing she needs is a cowboy sweet-talking her into staying. She agrees to give the place one week, one week only, and then she’s returning to normal life. Not even a bull rider who seems to look straight into her heart can change her mind . . . until he does.

Welcome to Lost Creek Rodeo!

Best friends at a small college in Texas, six cowboys rise to become pro-rodeo stars. Follow Ryan, Reid, Westin, Ford, Eric and Lars in these six swoony sports romances.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Are you ready for more cowboys?  Here is book three in the Lost Creek Rodeo series.  I don't think you have to read these books in order, but I think you will be much happier if you do.  These authors take turns writing the books but the characters they write about all interconnect.  In this book, Silvia's brother is from a previous series.  It definitely gives all these books a feeling of continuity, community and family.

Westin is a genuinely nice guy.  He is motivated as a bull rider by his father and his hopes to reach his record and level.  I liked Westin's determination and his kind support of Silvia, even when she wasn't so nice to him.

Silvia is a character I feel I didn't fully understand.  I could feel her frustration with her brother and I get having panic attacks but I didn't altogether buy into her reasons for conflict with Westin.  Silvia was on a journey to self discovery though, finding independence and confidence along the way.  That was satisfying.

This was a nice addition to this ongoing series.  I love reading about these cowboys because they are rough and tough but kind and good as well.  They make great love stories!  I'm looking forward to the next one!

This book (and this series) is available on KU.

- kissing, mild peril

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Cover Reveal for Royal Spy (Fate of Eyrinthia #2) by Heather Frost

This is a book I am really anticipating.  The first book was one of my favorite reads last year.  I'm so excited that I am getting closer to having this book in my hands!  So, here it is! ** DRUM ROLL ** The cover for the second book in the Fate of Eyrinthia series!!


A DECOY recruited to be a spy.

A PRINCE compelled to become an assassin.

A SERJAH pressured by an unwanted crown.

A WORLD covered in shadows.


Mere months ago, Clare was just a kitchen maid. Now, she is a decoy for Princess Serene and a novice spy, caught in the royal family's web of secrets. While journeying to Mortise to finalize the princess’s betrothal to Serjah Desfan, Clare lives for the stolen moments she has with Bennick, the bodyguard who is quickly claiming her heart. But when a notorious assassin is hired to kill her, Clare’s life and the alliance hang in the balance.

In Ryden, Grayson prepares to leave for Mortise with his brother, Liam. Their orders are to ignite a war between their enemies, and Grayson has been tasked with assassinating Princess Serene. It may cost his soul, but he is ready to comply, as long as he gets something in return: freedom for Mia, the girl he loves. But the more time he spends with his brother, the more he begins to wonder if Liam is what Grayson wishes he had the courage to be . . . a traitor.

Desfan feels trapped. By his disapproving council, his impending marriage to a stranger, and the imminent arrival of enemy princes who may not want the peace they profess. When a dangerous drug threatens his people, Desfan jumps at the chance to rely on his swords instead of politics. But his investigation uncovers more than he bargained for—a plot that may destroy Mortise from within.

Eyrinthia hovers on the edge of war. Spies. Rebels. Traitors. All must choose a side.

 * Goodreads * Amazon *

Pre-order Gift Form: https://forms.gle/uQtyD4SboRAeNBtYA

***Pre-order Royal Spy and fill out the form to receive an EXCLUSIVE scene from Bennick’s POV: The Decoy and the Bodyguard***

***Read Book 1 Today – Available on Kindle Unlimited***


 




Heather Frost writes mostly YA fiction and has a soft spot for tortured characters, breath-stealing romance, and happy endings. She is the author of the Seers trilogy and the Fate of Eyrinthia series. She has a BS in Creative Writing and a minor in Folklore, which means she got to read fairy tales and ghost stories and call it homework. When she's not writing, Heather likes to read, travel, and hold Lord of the Rings movie marathons. She lives in a beautiful valley surrounded by towering mountains in the wilds of Utah. To learn more about Heather and her books, visit her website:www.HeatherFrost.com

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Wednesday, March 17, 2021

The Songbook of Benny Lament by Amy Harmon

 




New York, 1960: For Benny Lament, music is his entire life. With his father’s deep ties to the mob, the Bronx piano man has learned that love and family can get you in trouble. So he keeps to himself, writing songs for other musicians, avoiding the spotlight…until the night his father brings him to see Esther Mine sing.
Esther is a petite powerhouse with a gorgeous voice. And when Benny writes a hit song and performs it with her, their collaboration thrusts the duo onto the national stage…and stirs up old issues and new scrutiny that the mob—and Benny—would rather avoid.

It would be easier to walk away. But the music and the woman are too hard for the piano man to resist. Benny’s songs and Esther’s vocals are an explosive combination, a sound that fans can’t get enough of. But though America might love the music they make together, some people aren’t ready for Benny Lament and Esther Mine on—or off—the stage.

 * Amazon * Goodreads

I'm such a fan of Amy Harmon.  She is a talented author with the ability to write such diverse books covering all the genres.  It's amazing to me.

This book has such a somber feel to it.  It was engaging and interesting but definitely somber and a bit heavy.  Each chapter starts with part of an interview between Benny and a radio show host which kind of sets the stage for the next bit of the story.  I really liked how that was set up.  As the story progressed I began to understand the characters and I really grew to love them.  I was invested in them, their stories and what motivated them.  

Esther says, “If you want people to change, you have to show them what it looks like.”

Isn't that so true?  It's a timeless message worth repeating over and over.  This author doesn't shy away from writing the hard things.  She challenges her readers to think and feel in ways that may feel uncomfortable.  Uncomfortable but necessary.

Of course I adored the love story of Benny and Esther.  It was real and it was deeply rooted.

Unfortunately, there was content that crossed my personal boundaries.  Frequent swearing (some strong language) and some sexual content.  It's a personal preference, not a judgement call.  There was violence, some graphic in nature.  Of course this is expected when dealing with mobs.  I just had a harder time with all of that together.  This wasn't my favorite book by this author but her talent is undeniable.  I'll be watching to see what she does next.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, March 15, 2021

In Harm's Way (Guardian #5) by Traci Hunter Abramson + Win a Copy of This Book!

 


For years, Troy has lived in the shadows as a Guardian. As part of this secret government taskforce, he has agreed to oversee the team’s base of operations on a remote private island in Maine, replacing fellow agent Ace and his wife, Kristi, for a year. When Troy steps in to hold down the fort, however, he does not anticipate company. So when Kristi’s sister, Jocelyn, appears on the island looking for a getaway, Troy is unnerved by her presence—hiding his top-secret work from the beautiful visitor is a recipe for disaster.

It’s been years since Jocelyn has been able to relax, and the family island is the clear antidote to the chaos of the business world. Expecting solitude, she is taken off guard by the presence of the handsome house sitter living in her sister’s home. Though she and Troy fall into an easy friendship, beneath his calm demeanor, he is an enigma. It’s clear the man who is quickly stealing her heart has a secret, but the truth is beyond Jocelyn’s widest imaginings: Troy is involved in stopping a political coup, and their relationship threatens to place Jocelyn squarely in the crosshairs of a deadly assassin.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

All good things will be coming out of my mouth for this book.  I really loved it but first can we talk about the cover?  This publisher is so good at covers!  Honestly, they have created some of my favorites and this book and series is an excellent example.  This cover perfectly matches the content of the book and well, I just love it.

So now.  The book.  

I loved being back on the island off the coast of Maine, this time with Troy and Jocelyn.  Everything in this book grew so well together.  Friendship, plot, suspense.  So many of the characters in this book are familiar to me from previous books in the series which gave it that feeling of community and family.  It also means you really should read this series in order because you will love it so much more if you do.

The buildup in tension was great.  I loved how my feelings grew as the story progressed.  The ending was full on.  I finished right before going to bed and I had a hard time turning my brain off.  It just wanted to think about the book!  I even woke up thinking about it.  I love when that happens.  

This author is so good at this genre!  One of my favorites.

Content:  peril, violence, kissing, some Christian elements (talk of God, praying)

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.



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Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Before Time Runs Out (Charles & Company Romance, #1) by Amy Matayo

 


Graduate student Bree Sanders is failing the one class she needs to get her degree. So when her professor gives her an ultimatum—ace her dissertation or risk having to repeat her final semester—she knows she has to pull out all the stops. After scrambling for an idea, she decides to create her own Ghost Club, a club that blames ghosts for unsolved crimes, the same type of club originally founded two centuries ago by Charles Dickens.

What she doesn’t expect is to find an original copy of one of Dickens’ early works, or to be transplanted into Dickens’s actual ghost club meeting, circa 1870, the instant she picks it up.

When Bree shows up in nineteenth-century England wearing cut-offs and an old t-shirt, her only option is to hide. The Cambridge of 1870 won’t look kindly on a woman dressed like her. So, when Theodore Keyes finds her tucked behind a bookcase at the Trinity College library and immediately demands to know where she came from, she knows he doesn’t belong here either. Turns out she’s right; the same book caused him to time-travel from 1947 almost three months ago and he’s been stuck in England since.

Together, the two vow to work side-by-side in their search for the lost book that will take them home. But as their feelings for one another deepen, Theo and Bree are caught between a desire to return to the lives they each left behind, and the knowledge that if they find the book, they won’t be able to leave together.

In the end, they each must decide which sacrifice is worth making—the one that will cost them their hearts, or the one that could cost them their very existence.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Happy release day to this new book by author Amy Matayo!  I don't know how this feels as an author, but as a reader, it can be a bit scary when an author you love steps into a new genre.  Into the unknown. . . (is anyone singing with me?!)  Because what if you don't like it?  That's how I was feeling about this book.  Time travel romances can be hit or miss for me.  It's not a genre that is easy to do well.

I shouldn't have worried.  Honestly, I freaked myself out for nothing.  haha.  It took me a little bit to be convinced and to really invest in the characters and the story but once I was in, I was in.  The plot of this book is interesting and it wasn't like anything I've been reading lately so that felt really good.  It had a couple surprises for me that I didn't quite predict so that was also fun.

This author always does a good job of giving her characters substance and making them feel like every one of us.  A little bit broken in some places but brave in moving forward and facing life.  That was both Theo and Bree.  I really liked them both.

This is the first book in a new series and I'm excited about it!  Time travel romance, here we come!  This book is available in KU if you have that.  Happy reading!

Content:  mild peril, mild violence, kissing

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Wednesday, March 3, 2021

A Captain for Caroline Gray by Julie Wright

 

 

Caroline Gray would rather be daring and intelligent than demure and insipid, which is why she is still unmatched after her third season in London. Her family’s threadbare finances leave Caroline with only one choice to secure her future: sail with the Fishing Fleet to India, where the son of a family friend is willing to consider an engagement to her.

Captain Thomas Scott loves the open sea as much as he despises the three-month, twice-yearly trip his ship makes as he ferries young English girls across the ocean. He can’t imagine what family would allow an innocent young woman to be matched up with the Englishmen of questionable reputation who work and live in India.

But when Miss Gray boards the HMS Persistence, all of Captain Scott’s plans are upended. Miss Gray’s fiery spirit can’t be contained, and he is shocked and secretly delighted at her boldness—and her beauty. But the rest of his passengers aren’t so kind.

Caroline finds herself an outcast among her peers, but Captain Scott becomes an unlikely ally. They share the same passions and interests, creating an undeniable attraction. But they both know any relationship between them is impossible. After all, Caroline has obligations to fulfill in India.

Caroline has until the end of the voyage to decide if she is going to marry a man she has never met or be brave enough to love a sea captain who just might break her heart.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

I've read a few books in the last little while set on a ship during this time period.  It's amazing to me that authors can take a setting with so little diversity and make it into a full length novel.  This one does eventually end up in India but not until the end.

Caroline is an interesting character because she doesn't really in with "society".  She is beautiful and brainy too.  It's a great combo but not for her forced society.  Watching her constantly question herself and force herself to be someone she was not was hard.  It made me sad just like it made her sad.  It makes me really grateful for those kind of women who didn't conform but forged ahead to pave a new path for women in society.

This story progresses slowly and gently.  The bit of excitement at the end was a nice change from the more placid pace of the rest of the book.  I wish there would have been more to the ending or maybe an epilogue.  I felt like it cut off pretty quickly once the final resolution came.  Overall, I liked it.  3.5 stars

Content:  mild peril, kissing

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.

 

About the author:

JULIE WRIGHT was born in Salt Lake City, Utah. She’s lived in LA, Boston, and the literal middle of nowhere (don’t ask). She wrote her first book when she was fifteen. Since then, she’s written twenty-five novels and coauthored three. Julie is a two-time winner of the Whitney Award for best romance with her books Cross My Heart and Lies Jane Austen Told Me and is a Crown Heart recipient. Her book Death Thieves was a Whitney finalist.

She has one husband, three kids, one grandbaby, one dog, and a varying amount of houseplants (depending on attrition).

She loves writing, reading, traveling, hiking, snorkeling, playing with her family on the beach, and watching her husband make dinner.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Second Chance (Griffin Force #5) by Julie Coulter Bellon

 


Griffin Force tracks a dangerous terrorist to Libya, but the only man on their team that can infiltrate the terrorist's lair is Augie---their computer tech. They'll take a huge risk with an undercover asset who gets Augie in and assures them he won't be killed.

But who can the team really trust when the op goes sideways?

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Wa-hoo!  It's release day for this book and I feel like I've been waiting forever for it!  I mean, it hasn't REALLY been forever, but you know what I mean.  It seems like so long ago that this author revealed the cover for this book and I was SO excited.  Julie Coulter Bellon is one of my favorites in this military suspense genre.  She has written in other genres too and I like that but this is my first love.  I loved being back with the Griffin Force team with the spotlight on Augie, the computer tech genius.  Time to really shine, Augie!!

And shine he did.  

Even in the dark moments, Augie was shining.  He really came through as a protector and a defender.  I loved his bravery and his kindness.  Rian has a great presence in this book- who doesn't love a strong woman?  She was amazing.  And of course, seeing old friends was nice too.  I love how this team works together.

I loved how the story unfolded.  I stayed up way too late last night to finish it because I didn't want to sleep until knew everything.  Of course, now I am desperate for the next book because I was left with a "to be continued . . . "  Boo.  I sure hope the author is writing that next book!!

Content:  peril, violence, kissing

This book is on KU!

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Forever Phoebe by Chalon Linton + Enter to Win a Copy of This Book!


At the dignified age of eighteen, Phoebe Jamison knows she should behave in a manner befitting her station, as her three loving elder brothers often tease. Unfortunately, the lively young woman has a personality every bit as fiery as her red hair, a fact brought to her attention in the criticism from the gentleman she has long pined for. But not every man is of the opinion that a woman should be decorous above all else. The newest resident of Somerset, Mr. Franklin Everly, is considered a most eligible bachelor, and he is immediately drawn to Phoebe’s spirited nature as he becomes acquainted with the delightful Jamison siblings of Primly Park.

Franklin embarks on a friendship with Phoebe that quickly deepens into a warm and thrilling connection. But even as he fights for Phoebe’s attentions, a very real danger is revealed: girls in neighboring villages have gone missing, and the kidnapper is moving ever closer to Primly Park. Despite the guard of her fiercely protective brothers and Franklin, Phoebe must rely on her own strength when she finds herself in the sights of the Bride Snatcher.


I'm so glad the character on this cover looks like the character described in the book.  That fiery red hair deserves to be represented!

Franklin is the perfect representation of wooing.  He is so sweet and so attentive.  Honestly, I adored him.  He tries so hard to win Phoebe's attention.  Can I just mention "the song" here?  Franklin sings Phoebe a song and oh!  It melted my heart.  Hers too.  😉 Franklin sees and loves Phoebe for who she is.  He is intentional and purposeful.  Sigh.  So adorable.

Phoebe is a fun character.  Her brothers really add to the story as well making this story a collection of winsome characters.  They were all so easy to like.  I appreciated the bit of added mystery with the snatcher and how that played out.  It was a much needed bonus element that livened things up at just the right time.

I really enjoyed this one!  

Content:  mild peril, kissing

I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Give Me One Good Reason: A Sweet Romantic Comedy (Shaped By Love #4) by Michelle Pennington

 

No calling dibs on dream guys.


Why do short girls always get the tall guys?

Don't they know that those of us who more closely resemble giraffes than dainty little wood sprites should have first pick of any guy who isn't eye level with our cleavage?

But what happens when the embodiment of all my tall-girl fantasies gets hired to work at Booms and Nibbles?

My short best friend snags a date with him first.

What do I get to do? Butt heads with him all day every day as I try to educate him on selling women's underwear, that's what. He's opinionated, blunt, and... Sigh. It's no use. He's amazing. Especially when his beautiful brown eyes glint at me from behind those nerdy glasses—sending messages that both confuse and captivate me.

Well, Adam had better fortify those walls he keeps putting up because I've always been the type to go after what I want. And my sights are set on his heart.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

I was so excited to dive into this book!  I've loved all the books in this series with the first still standing as my favorite because that one really made me laugh.  This one was fun too with lots of excellent smiling, swooning moments.  The characters in this series all work for the same company that sells women's underwear, specializing in sizes that are harder to find.  They themselves have varying body types that bring their own set of insecurities and confidences.  I love that these books really bring to light that all body types are beautiful.  The women in this series all support each other well in that regard.  It's refreshing.

Angela is tall.  And funny.  I loved her take charge attitude and how passionately she loved her job.  She's an all in kind of girl and it was so easy to like her.  Adam shows up in a previous book so his character wasn't altogether unfamiliar but we get to see him from a whole new perspective in this book- Angela's perspective.  And she pretty much drools over him.  haha.  It was fun to watch their relationship progress.  Oh!  And I also loved the nod to K Dramas.  I love watching those too!!

This book sets up the next book perfectly and I can't wait to read it!

I picked this book up on KU.

Content:  kissing

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Love in the City: Limited Edition Romantic Comedy Box Set

 


 Get ready for thirteen heart pounding and laugh out loud rom-coms from thirteen bestselling and award winning authors, including Amazon chart toppers and USA Today bestsellers. Filled with mystery, second chances, soulmates, brother’s best friends, bad boys, nobility, and the cute guy in the cubicle next to you, these stories will captivate you and leave you wishing for more.
 
Download this limited edition box set while you can and indulge in these sweet and sexy leading men and strong and beautiful heroines while they fall in love in cities around the world.

Sariah Wilson - All’s Fair in Love and War 
Becky Monson -The Love Potion 
Jennifer Peel - Love the One You’re With 
Kirsty Greenwood - Love Will Save the Day
Whitney Dineen - Love for Sale 
Aven Ellis - Love, the Viscount, & Me
Shari L. Tapscott - Little Lost Love Letter
Lucy McConnell - Can’t Forget a Love Like That
Kate O’Keeffe - A Very English Love Story
Erin Huss - Love, Lies, and Limo Rides
Melissa Baldwin - Thanks for the Love
Stephanie Fowers - Love at the Masquerade
Kathryn R. Biel - Vision of Love

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

I have been anticipating this boxed set for so long!  Just look at that awesome author line-up! Wow, so many of my favorites are included in this collection.  I had the chance to read a few stories early but I have also purchased my own book so I can read them all!

Love the One Your With by Jennifer Peel

I read through this story so quickly.  As usual, Jennifer Peel writes characters that are easy to relate to and root for.  Kasie and Jake have a different sort of love story- more mature, since they've been married for years but clearly Kasie feels undervalued and undesirable. It's a romantic slump for Kasie and Jake and something has to change.

What follows is a series of mishaps, misunderstandings, facing hurts, making changes and well, a return to love.  Things are real but not overwhelming and there was a good dose of entertaining as well.  The progression was natural but it was just over too soon.  I'm used to longer stories by this author and it was hard to feel like I was only getting a bite sized dose of her usual books!  I loved the characters (and the secondary characters!) and especially the ending.  Hello Kitty. 😻  * 5 stars *

Little Lost Love Letter by Shari Tapscott

Oh my goodness.  I loved this story!  From the very beginning to the very end I was completely invested in Lucy and Ryland. The interactions and banter between them was so much fun!!  Talk about chemistry and sparks!!  Lucy and her (so, so many) mishaps, the poor girl.  It made her ever so endearing.  I think this is going to be a repeat statement for every book I read in this collection, but this story was over too fast.  I wanted to linger with Lucy and Ryland.  This book was light, fun, romantic and it just made me happy.  * 5 stars *

Love at the Masquerade by Stephanie Fowers 

Cute, cute, cute!  This author has been writing stories set in New Orleans lately and they are so fun.  It makes me want to visit there and enjoy the unique atmosphere and eat ALL the food.  I think this one is my favorite of this NO series so far- lots of good chemistry and sparks.  I liked the kissing.  💋😍 It was lighthearted, easy reading and I enjoyed my time with Harken and Mia.  * 4 stars *


Saturday, February 13, 2021

Chute Boss (Lost Creek Rodeo #2) by Sophia Summers

 


The perfect vacation: Rest. Therapy. And miles away from Reid Browning.

At first Eden thinks she's spending three weeks at Broken Hearts Ranch to heal her head. But the longer she works with Kellie, the more she realizes her head is not the only thing hurting. Images from her tour in Iraq stay hidden but not deeply enough, and she knows she will need to forget or heal or both if she is ever going to move on. As a bonus, the ranch was going to be a good opportunity to avoid the dating scene, and men in general. Or so she thought.

As a world class bareback rider, Reid has given his all to rodeo and does everything he can to forget his law degree and the fast paced life he left in Washington DC. That includes the woman he recently met who got under his skin in all the wrong ways. The trouble is, she got under his skin in the right ways too. When he escapes to Texas to support his college brothers in the Lost Creek Rodeo, he couldn't be more surprised to find her there.

Sparks fly and not always the good kind, but when circumstances throw them together and barriers come down, the two just might find a path to healing and maybe even love.

Welcome to Lost Creek Rodeo!

Best friends at a small college in Texas, six cowboys rise to become pro-rodeo stars. Follow Ryan, Reid, Westin, Ford, Eric and Lars in these six swoony sports romances.


It's the second book in this Lost Creek Rodeo series!  Let's hear it for the cowboys!  This story highlights Reid although all the rodeo boys are around so we get little glimpses of them.  It really helps give this series a sense of community and family.

Reid and Eden have not just one not-so-good first meet but a series of them.  First meet, second meet, third meet. . .  yeah, you would think they would avoid each other because honestly?  Their encounters are painful!  But I guess there is something about attraction that keeps pulling them in.  Reid and Eden appear to be opposites but as they get to know each other they find ways to communicate and share.  They don't always agree but they learn to listen to each other and they learn how to support each other.  I liked that.

This is a fun series so far.  I can't wait to read the next book!

Content:  mild peril, kissing, flashbacks of war time trauma

- I picked this book up on Kindle Unlimited

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Of Sword and Shadow by A.L. Sowards

 

Greece, 1379

She is known by many names, none of them her own. In truth, she is an unnamed slave, nothing more than a weapon in the hands of her owner in his attempts to provoke political mayhem. When she encounters a handsome young man while on an assignment, she thinks little of him—until he attempts to take what she has stolen. But in her line of work, failure is not an option.

Gillen is intrigued by the mysterious woman who thwarts his mission. But when his path crosses hers again, his intrigue turns to gratitude as the thief he comes to call Eudocia saves his life. The two form a bond of friendship and join forces to wrest control from a group of ruthless rulers. But as their camaraderie blossoms into something more, Gillen and Eudocia must fight for love even as they wage war for a better future.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

This was just the sort of book I have been craving.  Something different.  The setting, the plot and the time period all felt fresh to me.  I really loved it.

The girl has no name.  How sad is that?  Names hold so much identity for us.  Sold into slavery at a very young age and forced into situations that brought pain and misery, the girl knows much about the harder things in life but not so much about the good.  Kindness, love and honesty are all foreign concepts to her.  Then comes Gillen, who takes to calling her Eudocia and gives her a glimpse of what kindness and friendship look like.  

There was adventure, political intrigue, hold your breath moments and times where I didn't think I could stand the horrors anymore.  The story moves along steadily, but not quickly.  There is plenty of time to digest what is happening and understand the characters and what is developing between them and in the plot.  This story is more of the other things and less of the romance. 

This author does such a good job with research and history.  I can feel it all throughout the book.  The attention to detail really helps set the stage in my mind so I can imagine it all.  It was so good.  I was excited to read that the author will be doing another book along these lines set some years down the road with some characters from this book making an appearance.  Yay!

Content:  violence, peril.  War time violence.  Beatings, torture, some detail given but nothing prolonged or too detailed.  References to using women in sexual ways but only generally and not specifically.  One kiss.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own. 

Monday, February 1, 2021

Age of Auroras (The Riven Kingdoms #4) by Shari L. Tapscott

 

 

Temporary peace has settled across Draegan as a new era begins for the cursed kingdom, but the royals know that tranquility is fleeting. In order to fulfill the magic and save the continent from its imminent destruction, Rhys and Amalia must once again return to Renove and see the rightful king ascend his throne.

The sorrows of yesterday forgotten, Amalia looks forward to crossing the rift one last time to see her family, filled with hope that the impossible task she and Rhys were charged with will soon be complete.

But the happy reunion doesn’t go as planned. The curse has fully descended on the once-blessed kingdom, and an imposter king wears a stolen crown.

Already, the broken magic begins to tear their world apart, and amidst it, an unavoidable battle looms that will test the royals in ways they never dared imagine.

Filled with love, betrayal, and magic, Age of Auroras is the epic conclusion of The Riven Kingdoms.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *  

Last book in the series?!  Sigh.  I'm so sad to be at the end but happy too.  Bittersweet.  This is a series you really need to read in order as each book builds on the last.

This was a dramatic conclusion to this series.  Each book has built on character relations and interactions.  The story line has grown and here we find ourselves at the end.  I loved the alternating perspectives and how every character was present and needed in the last great push to save the kingdoms and the people.  I love these characters but I think Seraphina and Aeron stole the show for me in this book.  They worked their magic together and I loved their emotional and dramatic ending.  😍  It was perfect for them.  And of course, this book ends where it started- with Rhys and Amalia.  Fitting and so, so good.

I may have read through this book WAY too fast.  I was so anxious to reach the conclusion and the anticipated happily ever after.  Now I wish I would have savored it a bit more.  I loved this book and this series.  Shari Tapscott is an author I can depend on for fantastic stories in many genres but I absolutely love her adventure/magical stuff.  It's so hard to find clean books in this genre.

Content:  some violence, kissing, peril.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Friday, January 29, 2021

Cover Reveal for Amy Matayo's New Book: Before Time Runs Out!

 

Time travel romance?!  Yes, please!  I can't wait for March!

 

Graduate student Bree Sanders is failing the one class she needs to get her degree. So when her professor gives her an ultimatum—ace her dissertation or risk having to repeat her final semester—she knows she has to pull out all the stops. After scrambling for an idea, she decides to create her own Ghost Club, a club that blames ghosts for unsolved crimes, the same type of club originally founded two centuries ago by Charles Dickens. 

 

What she doesn’t expect is to find an original copy of one of Dickens’ early works, or to be transplanted into Dickens’ actual ghost club meeting, circa 1870, the instant she picks it up.

 

When Bree shows up in nineteenth-century England wearing cut-offs and an old t-shirt, her only option is to hide. The Cambridge of 1870 won’t look kindly on a woman dressed like her. So, when Theodore Keyes finds her tucked behind a bookcase at the Trinity College library and immediately demands to know where she came from, she knows he doesn’t belong here either. Turns out she’s right; the same book caused him to time-travel from 1947 almost three months ago and he’s been stuck in England since.

 

Together, the two vow to work side-by-side in their search for the lost book that will take them home. But as their feelings for one another deepen, Theo and Bree are caught between a desire to return to the lives they each left behind, and the knowledge that if they find the book, they won’t be able to leave together. 

 

In the end, they each must decide which sacrifice is worth making—the one that will cost them their hearts, or the one that could cost them their very existence.  


 * Amazon *