Friday, September 23, 2022

Love in Writing (The Wonder Boys #2) by Dana LeCheminant


Allie has sworn off dating.

Which is unfortunate, because the cute guy at the grocery store has finally struck up a conversation, and shy and sweet Ben is even more adorable than he looks. When an ex shows up trying to rekindle the flame at the same time her mother tries to set her up with a neighbor, Allie ropes Ben into being her fake boyfriend to get everyone off her back.

Ben has been in love with the stranger at the grocery store for months despite never speaking to her. When he finally works up the courage to say hi, he’s suddenly thrown into a fake relationship with no chance of things becoming real. Not unless he helps Allie on her journey of self-discovery.

A weekend of pretending to be a couple turns into weeks of hanging out and discovering together the people they want to be. But despite Allie’s growing feelings for practically perfect Ben, she isn’t sure she can risk the best friendship she’s ever had when all of her past relationships have failed.

Or maybe a little risk is worth a chance at real love.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Book two is here!  This is a book series I am SO excited about!  The Wonder Boys!  Do I think you need to read book one (Love On Camera) before reading this one?  No.  But you will be probably be happier if you do.  Plus, it's a great story you just don't want to miss.  You can find it HERE.

Ben and Allie are both great characters with a great arch of growth.  I just loved Ben, especially as I got to know him more and more.  I feel like I fell in love with him right along with Allie.  He's so sweet, so unassuming, so aware of Allie and what she needs.  She brings out the best in him and makes him want better things for not just Allie, but himself too.

This whole story was so gentle and soft around my heart.  It felt so good.  I adored it.

And of course I love this group of friends who are always around, in every book.  The Wonder Boys!!  And Madi.  πŸ˜€  I can't wait for the next book!!

This book is in KU if you have that.  Happy reading, friends!

Content:  kissing

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

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Seoulmates by Susan Lee

 


Her ex-boyfriend wants her back. Her former best friend is in town. When did Hannah’s life become a K-drama?

Hannah Cho had the next year all planned out—the perfect summer with her boyfriend, Nate, and then a fun senior year with their friends.

But then Nate does what everyone else in Hannah’s life seems to do—he leaves her, claiming they have nothing in common. He and all her friends are newly obsessed with K-pop and K-dramas, and Hannah is not. After years of trying to embrace the American part and shunning the Korean side of her Korean American identity to fit in, Hannah finds that’s exactly what now has her on the outs.

But someone who does know K-dramas—so well that he’s actually starring in one—is Jacob Kim, Hannah’s former best friend, whom she hasn’t seen in years. He’s desperate for a break from the fame, so a family trip back to San Diego might be just what he needs…that is, if he and Hannah can figure out what went wrong when they last parted and navigate the new feelings developing between them.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

I absolutely love watching K-dramas.  That love lead me here, to this book, because a fellow K-drama lover met this author and mentioned her book.  I haven't read a book like this before and I was so curious!  

Curiosity satisfied!  What a cute story.  Hannah and Jacob have a history that is so heartwarming and also complicated.  Jacob's family move to Korea left them both with misunderstandings and hurts that have to be addressed before they can move on after reuniting.  It all felt very natural and normal for two teenagers.  I loved all their adventures and the rebuilding of their friendship that turned to more.  Hannah had a journey to self love and an acceptance of who she is.  Jacob learned to stand up for himself and his family.  They both learned to trust and stand up for each other.  It was all very satisfying as a reader.  This could easily be turned into a cute teenage movie!

My only complaint would be the level and frequency of swearing in this book.  It's a personal preference and one I realize is not shared by everyone.  If this book were a movie it would be rated R for language.

Content:  swearing, kissing, making out, alcohol use by minors at a party.

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

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Harvest Moon (Riverbend #3) by Denise Hunter

 


When a tragedy leaves a divorced couple with guardianship of their friends’ little girl, Laurel and Gavin drop everything for the sake of the child. Meanwhile, a case worker begins searching for a more suitable arrangement, and the estranged couple move into their friends’ home to provide temporary care for Emma and manage the on-property apple orchard. As they work together to comfort the grieving child and manage the busy harvest, tempers flare—as does the passion they both remember so well. But will the seeds of love, still growing inside them, thrive and flourish? Or will grief and regret strangle the feelings before they can fully blossom?


Gavin!  I feel like I've been waiting forever to finally get Gavin's story.  You know from the first book in this series that Gavin's story is tragic and haunts him.  But this book?  The tragedy just expands and it is honestly heartbreaking.  My heart was invested in the characters, the story and the outcome.

Grief is such a hard thing because everyone grieves so differently and the process moves at a different pace for everyone.  This is very true for Gavin and Laurel.  I was so grateful for the flashback scenes to when Gavin and Laurel fell in love and how their love story progressed.  It gave me the much needed foundation and information I needed to understand them both- maybe especially Laurel.

There's nothing like joining forces for the good of someone else to bring people together.  In this case, the sweetest little girl needed love and security and family.  I love that no matter what was going on between Gavin and Laurel, they were one hundred percent committed to Emma.  That was good for my heart.  And there is something so satisfying about second chance love stories.  This is such a good one.  I loved it.

I would definitely recommend reading this series in order.

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

Friday, September 9, 2022

A Pumpkin and a Patch by Jennifer Peel

 


Every person has that one thing they’re known for, and it doesn’t matter what you do, that one thing—whether good or bad—follows you around like a bloodhound for the rest of your life. For me it’s a story I wrote when I was fifteen. Forever more I will be known as the Reece the Rogue Pirate girl, instead of Josie Peterson. Why couldn’t I be known for all the cute children’s stories I’ve written about my family’s pumpkin patch?

Tragically, the torrid story I wrote as a teen was based on a real person, Reece Cavanaugh. And guess what? He grew up to be a pirate—okay, lawyer. Same thing. To make matters worse, the man is representing my ex-fiancΓ© who wants to steal my treasure, aka engagement ring. If that wasn’t the icing on the cake, Reece has an adorable daughter who happens to be my new student. That’s right, I must now have actual conversations with him after avoiding him for half my life, even by hiding behind banana displays when needed. But the more I get to know Reece—the real version, not the imaginary one who ravishes me on sandy beaches—I can’t help but wish we could roll around in the sand together. There’s a problem though, the school I work for frowns upon relationships between parents and teachers. And it’s pumpkin season, which means all my free time is spent on the family farm. But when he kisses me, I can’t help wanting to break all the rules and get tangled up in the barn. The burning question is, am I brave enough to make my story a reality or will it be another bad ending?

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Move over pumpkin spice, there's a new flavor in town and his name is Reece Cavanaugh. Get a fan ladies because he's coming in hot and determined. And HOT. πŸ”₯

Josie is one lucky girl. Here's my one line to her: Resistance is futile.
Seriously, she tries to run and avoid at first. Then she tries to hide. Then she is angry. Then she is in denial. Then she sets boundaries that shrink with every encounter. Like I said, resistance is futile. That's because Reece is really that charming, that attentive, that considerate, that determined and that hot. He doesn't try to hide the fact that he is one hundred percent into Josi. He's full on and I absolutely LOVED him.

I think I've reread the first kissing scene, well, I won't give a number. Let's just say a few times. hee hee.

Other things I loved?
Reece the dad.
Reece the rogue pirate.
Reece the room parent.
Reece the lawyer.

If you are looking for some romantic entertainment, this is your book. The tension and build up is great, the kissing is fantastic. You will fall in love with Josie, Reece and the pumpkin farm. It's a feel good kind of book that will have you smiling the whole way through. And then later too, when you think back on it.

This book is on KU if you have that!

Content: kissing. Mild innuendo.

Thursday, September 8, 2022

The Opera Sisters by Marianne Monson

 


Based on the true story of the Cook sisters, who smuggled valuables out of 1930s Nazi Germany to finance a daring, secret operation to help Jews find hope for a new life in England
 
British sisters Ida and Louise Cook enjoy their quiet, unassuming lives in south London. Ida writes romance novels, and Louise works as a secretary. In the evenings, the sisters indulge in their shared love for opera, saving their money to buy records and attend performances throughout England and Europe, becoming well-known by both performers and fellow opera lovers.

But when Hitler seizes power in 1933, he begins targeting and persecuting German Jews, passing laws that restrict their rights and their lives. The sisters continue their trips to the German opera houses, but soon, Jewish members of the opera community covertly approach the sisters, worried that they will be stripped of their wealth and forced to leave their homes and the country. Danger looms on the horizon, threatening to spill across all of Europe’s borders.

Ida and Louise vow to help, but how can two ordinary working-class women with limited means make a difference?

Together with their beloved opera community, the sisters devise a plan to personally escort Jewish refugees from Germany to England. The success of the plan hinges on Ida and Louise’s ability to smuggle contraband jewelry and furs beneath the watchful eyes of the SS soldiers guarding various checkpoints. But how many trips can they make before someone blows a whistle? Or before the final curtain falls on Germany’s borders?

The Opera Sisters is a riveting and inspiring novel of two unlikely heroines whose courage and compassion gave hope to many Jews desperate to escape Nazi persecution.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

I absolutely love historical fiction and when it is based on real people?  Even better.  I was so excited to read about these two sisters, Ida and Louise Cook, who bravely changed and saved people's lives during WWII.

It was fascinating to read about Ida and Louise's path that led them to helping so many people from Germany.  The opera and a love for music started it all.  A love for humankind and kind hearts led to the rest.  Ida sacrificed so much and honestly, it was very touching.  Stories like this remind me of the good people in the world.  

The harder part for me was how the story was told.  There were SO many people, it was sometimes hard to keep track of them all.  Because of this, I had a harder time connecting emotionally.  Of course I cared about what was happening and the people spoken of, but it was more in a general type of way and not an individual connection.  The way the story jumped from the sister's story to other stories took some getting used to.  I didn't really love the format.  

I feel like I learned something and of course I was reminded of the atrocities of war and most specifically, the atrocities against the Jewish people.  Heartbreaking.  But so important to remember.  What a great tribute this book is to these to these people.

Content:  peril and wartime violence.  Nothing in great detail.

Thursday, September 1, 2022

Sinister Secrets by Traci Hunter Abramson, Clair M. Poulson and Paige Edwards

 


Traci Hunter Abramson: Secrets of St. Augustine

FBI Special Agent Doug Valdez is in France looking for money launderers. The last thing he expects is to find a young girl fleeing for her life or the deadly game of cat and mouse that ensues.

Paige Edwards: In Plain Sight

Jaclyn Girard was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and now she’s caught in the middle of a deadly investigation. With danger mounting, she must work alongside FBI operative Cody Ackert if she hopes to survive.

Clair M. Poulson: Hounded

Recently retired Army Ranger Renn Huitt has found the perfect job. Working for Bob, a private investigator nearing retirement, should be easy. But Bob has put a lot of people behind bars—people who hold a grudge. And now they are coming for him.


Secrets of St. Augustine: 5 stars
If you have read any of this author's books, Agent Doug Valdez will be familiar to you.  He's been in quite a few books so his character was familiar to me.  Even if you haven't read about him before, his general backstory is covered so you will have a good idea just how awesome he is.  This story is action packed and fast moving starting in France and then through Europe.  Poor Layla.  The history of her short life so far will break your heart.  Doug was the perfect person to cross paths with her and save her.  I loved this story!  (no romance here, but definitely love!)

Hounded:  3.5 stars
Author Clair Poulson is going at knowing his terminology and the way the police process works.  His stories always sound believable and reasonable.  There was a lot going on in this story, and there were a lot of people involved.  I didn't have trouble keeping them all straight, I just had trouble connecting to the characters and to any sort of emotion.  I liked the strong men who had strong women helping them though.  That felt good.  (mild romance)

In Plain Sight:  5 stars
This story was such a good balance of all things emotional and suspenseful.  I loved the dual perspective from both Cody and Jaclyn.  Jaclyn's family was brought into the story and it really made things feel homey and gave that touch of realistic as they all shared a cramped apartment for a bit.  The food, the sleeping, the bathroom.  There was plenty of action and tension to keep me reading, anxious and invested all the way through.  My favorite of the three novellas in this book.  (This novella held the most romance.)

Content:  peril, violence (running, chasing, gunshots, fighting).

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

Monday, August 22, 2022

More Than a Pretty Face (Cowboys of Stargazer Springs #2) by Remi Carrington

 


The one who got away was here all along

When I’m abandoned at a party and find myself in a vulnerable situation, a stranger rescues me. I want to thank him, but I have no memory of his face, only a text telling my housemate that he’s a cowboy with a pretty face. That’s not a lot to go on.

I’ve build him up as a fantasy in my head, but when a flirtatious ranch hand makes his interest clear, I have to choose between clinging to a memory, one that’s fuzzy at best, and embracing the present.

A real-life cowboy is better than a dream. Right? What if I’m wrong about that?

 * Goodreads * Amazon *

I've been reading books by this author here and there for a while now, mostly in between review books.  This time I am officially reviewing and I'm excited!  I read the first book in this series a few weeks ago and it was so good.  I think I liked this one even better though.

Something I really loved about this book was that there wasn't any major conflict between the characters.  No grand misunderstanding, no big departure from each other because of said misunderstanding.  It was just about these two and their paths toward love.  Yeah, there were some bumps in the road to happiness, but from outside events and not between them.  Don't get me wrong, I enjoy stories the other way too, but sometimes it's nice to read a love story where the main characters get along.  You know?

It was so easy to settle into this book.  Both Jasmine and Tyler are so easy to like.  I would want to be friends with them in real life.  Tyler is a dreamy boyfriend.  I loved how he went out of his way so often to find Jasmine, to be near her, to make her feel safe and valued.  He was so patient and so attentive.  How could I not love him?!  That's pretty much what Jasmine thinks too!  We're totally on the same page.  Other fun things?  Goat yoga.  Building garden boxes.  The feeling of friends and community.

This book is part of a series but can easily stand alone.  I would recommend reading them in order if you can because the characters in this series are all part of a community and you will love the continuity and flow of knowing them from beginning to end.  I'm especially excited for the next book because Poppy and Kent!  This book really set up their story.

Content:  kissing, Jasmine's drink is drugged at a party.  Sweet romance.



Monday, August 8, 2022

A Tenuous Betrothal (Royal Regency #3) by Jen Geigle Johnson

 


Rhianna Davies is well-acquainted with heartache after the painful loss of her parents. At the arrival of her ghastly uncle, she is brought even lower: Rhi has been banished from her family’s estate home and must rely on the kindness of her tightly knit Welsh miners for help. Without the protective love of her parents, Rhi has no illusions that hers will be a happy ending—until an addendum to her father’s will arrives in the hands of a prince.

Marc Wilhelm, Prince of Oldenburg, is in Wales with one purpose: to claim his betrothed. A long-ago promise between their fathers forges an indelible link between Rhi and Marc, but there remains just one problem: neither wants to marry a stranger. With no remaining ties to Wales, Rhi agrees to accompany Marc to Oldenburg, where he will forfeit their betrothal so she may have her pick of husbands. But their journey takes them down unexpected paths, from the depths of a Welsh mine to the marriage mart of London to a warm reception in Oldenburg. Rhi and Marc discover that their connection and their challenges run deeper than either anticipated, but whether from their own hesitations or from danger that threatens without, the couple might be thwarted before they can even begin the happily ever after they so richly deserve.


Dear Marc, Prince of Oldenburg,

Have you ever seen The Little Mermaid?  Because there is a song in that show that was on loop in my head as I read your story.  "Yes, you want her.  Look at her, you know you do.  It's possible she wants you too, there is one way to ask her. . . and you don't know why but you're dying to try, you want to kiss the girl."   I felt like Sebastian in your story.

Kiss the girl!!  I get why you held back, well actually, I don't.  I get why YOU think you should've held back, but I don't get it.  Anyone who looks at you two can see clearly that you are meant to be together.  It's all there.  She is beautiful, inside and out.  She is smart, loyal, kind and brave.  Seriously?!  What were you doing?  KISS THE GIRL.

I will say that I admire your kindness.  Rhianna really needed someone to step in and help her and you did it, perfectly.  I loved how you listened to her and respected what she said and what she wanted.  Yes, your loyalty to your country is admirable too.  It is.  It's just, . . . Rhianna.   But you eventually got there.  It took quite the event to get you there, but hallelujah, you got there.  You are so lucky you didn't lose your girl to one of your brothers.

Oh, and one other little thing.  Now that we are such tight friends, I wondered if I could visit your castle?  I promise I won't get in your way at all.  I'll just find a little spot, overlooking the water with a cozy chair and a book.  You won't even know I am there. 

Give my best, kindest regards to Rhi.  She is amazing.

Yours sincerely,

Aimee, queen of nothing but a fan of your story and your beautiful book cover.  πŸ’™

Saturday, August 6, 2022

Hearts of Briarwall by Krista Jensen

 


A TURN OF THE CENTURY ROMANCE


Lydia Wooding is fascinated by the latest inventions the new century brings, including motorcars. She longs for the independence they represent and believes that women should have a say in the future of the industry—just as they should have a say in suffrage, adventure, and, of course, love.

Spencer Hayes is a man of practicality and innovation, but he lacks the financial backing to make his dream a reality. When he contacts his childhood friend, Andrew Wooding, about a promising business venture, he is invited to Briarwall Manor to discuss the terms. Once there, he is surprised to find that Andrew's once shy, younger sister, Lydia, has grown into a young woman of beauty, wit, and a bit of fire. Even better, the two share a passion for motorcars.

Andrew, however, is wary of cars, having lost his parents in a tragic auto accident when he and Lydia were young. And he's not sure a relationship between his sister and Spencer is the best idea—not when Sir Lawrence is available and could match both Lydia's social status and her fortune.

Torn between risking their hearts and being loyal to their dreams in an era of whirlwind change, Spencer and Lydia anchor themselves with the determination they both share: to live life to its fullest.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

Have you ever read a book set in the Edwardian period?  (Think Downton Abbey.)  I don't think I have but I love movies set in this time period so this was a fun change in reading.

Motorcars were such a hot topic in the Edwardian era and I loved how this book brought that out.  It had such a loud presence with Lydia and Andrew losing their parents in a motorcar accident and Spencer and Lydia's shared passion and interest in them.  It really was fun to imagine the cars then and the excitement and even some of the wariness of people who lived then.

The group of Lydia's friends entertained me.  I loved their excursion to the scent shop and how feminine and also how bold they were.  I loved Lydia's desire to read.  Of course I connected to that.  πŸ˜€  I also loved how women were emerging into their own rights and standing for what they wanted independently of men.  This book showcased that well and it made me proud to be a woman.

I enjoyed the growing friendship between Spencer and Lydia- how they reconnected after so many years and found equal footing again.  It was all very sweet.

Content:  kissing

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


About the Author: 

Award-winning author KRISTA JENSEN works and plays in the Pacific Northwest with her spunky little dog and anyone else who wants to tag along. When she’s not exploring the outdoors, she can likely be found with her laptop, a pretty spiral notebook, and a Pilot Precise V7, writing about love, triumph, and really great kisses. Either that or she’s switching laundry wondering who keeps wearing all these clothes. (It’s her.) For book info and other good things, follow Krista on Instagram @kristajensenbooks.

Hearts of Briarwall is the 45th installment in the Proper Romance® series, a collection of award winning, clean romance novels written by 12 authors across a wide spectrum of genres, including Regency, Victorian, and Contemporary. These stories feature relatable heroines, handsome heroes, obstacles to overcome and happy endings. Learn more at www.properromance.com.

Thursday, August 4, 2022

The Epic Story of York & RJ (Out of the Night, I Will Find You, No Matter the Cost) by Susan May Warren + Giveaway

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for The Epic Story of RJ and York by Susan May Warren, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE SERIES

It’s an epic adventure across Europe, from France to Italy, to Germany and even Russia in this riveting, fun, romantic, enthralling trilogy about true love, honor, and the cost of, well, saving the world.

Title: Out of the Night 
Series: The Epic Story of York & RJ #1 
Author: Susan May Warren 
Publisher: SDG Publishing 
Release Date: August 9, 2022 
Genre: Romantic Suspense (Clean)

The romantic trilogy ignites in book one of the Epic Story of RJ and York! 

He’s not looking for trouble… 

All former spy and current national security agent York Newgate wants is to propose to the woman he loves, RJ Marshall. Then they can move to Shelly, Washington, and start the calm, safe life he’s been dreaming of for over a year. 

Too bad trouble doesn’t agree… 

Or maybe RJ simply attracts trouble because she’s just going out for coffee when she spots a wanted, known terrorist standing in the middle of a street in Paris. At least she thinks it’s international criminal Alan Martin, the mastermind behind a plot to kill the president. But he's in jail, right? Wrong. Martin has escaped, and it’s up to RJ—and York—to keep him in their sights until he can be apprehended. But chasing down Martin means following him into the darkness of whatever plot he's cooked up now. 

Will he ever outrun trouble to find his happy ending? 

So much for York’s epic proposal. Now, he just wants to escape Europe with their lives. 

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble


Title: I Will Find You 
Series: The Epic Story of York & RJ #2 
Author: Susan May Warren 
Publisher: SDG Publishing 
Release Date: August 16, 2022 
Genre: Romantic Suspense (Clean)

The gripping romantic adventure continues across Europe in this second installment of the Epic Story of RJ and York! 

The woman he loves has vanished… 

When RJ Marshall said she’d be right back, York should have objected. No, he wasn’t going to let her run off to Berlin, even if it was to save a little girl. Only problem—she’d told him this while he was unconscious. So really, it doesn’t count, and it’s not his fault that she’s gone missing. And, he didn’t know why he expected RJ not to chase danger into trouble. But now he has to find her before criminal mastermind Alan Martin tracks her down. 

She’s in over her head… 

RJ didn’t mean to leave York behind, but she’s on a mission to save a little girl caught in the crossfire of Martin’s terrorist plot. Now, she’ll have to find the girl and keep her safe while leaving clues for York to follow her. 

But who will catch up to her first—York, or the man with a vendetta?

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble 


Title: No Matter the Cost 
Series: The Epic Story of York & RJ #3 
Author: Susan May Warren 
Publisher: SDG Publishing 
Release Date: August 23, 2022 
Genre: Romantic Suspense (Clean)

The riveting conclusion to the Epic Story of RJ and York! 

Her worst nightmare has happened…. 

RJ refuses to believe it, and until she has proof, she’s going to keep searching for answers. And most of all, for the man she loves, even if it means diving into the past he always wanted to keep secret. The kind of secrets that could have set York free. It’ll take a trip back to Russia, to the sketchy and dark history of York’s life to find the clues to the sinister plans of a global terrorist. And the answers that might lead her to a happy ending. 

Or has it? What if her happy ending is more than a dream? 

If RJ hopes to save her country—and find out the truth about York—she’ll have to become the high-action, Sydney Bristow spy that she always dreamed of being. But really, does RJ really have what it takes—with, or without the man she loves—to save the world? 

And if she does…what will be the cost? 

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Wow, I feel so lucky to have been able to read all three of these books right in a row with no stopping.  Because honestly?  Stopping and waiting in between would have been the worst.  Epic story is right.  You can read them all in a row too because they are releasing, one per week for three weeks!

There is constant danger and action in this book which made it hard to breathe!  I was so caught up in RJ and York.  I adore them.  Separately and together.  We get to know them through the Montana Marshalls Series (which I would recommend reading first) and I love that they get their own epic adventure together all through Europe.  The places came alive and the emotions were heightened as York and RJ fight to stay alive and to save the world.  Again.  Yeah, Ruby drove me crazy a few times.  "I'll never leave York again."  Then she leaves.  "I'll never leave York again!"  Then she leaves.  Ay, ay, ay, Ruby Jane.  She is a jump in first, think later kind of girl.  But yeah, it usually works out for her.  York is a hero.  Plain and simple.  The very best kind of hero.

Hang on, buckle up, and get ready!  You are in for a ride!!  Block out plenty of time, too.  You won't want to stop reading!

Content:  violence, death, peril.  Christian themes.  Kissing.  

- I received a complimentary copy of these books.  All opinions expressed are my own.

ALSO AVAILABLE

Knox Tate Ford Wyatt Ruby Jane by Susan May Warren


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Susan May Warren

With over 1.5 million books sold, critically acclaimed USA Today best-selling novelist Susan May Warren is the Christy, RITA and Carol award-winning author of over ninety novels with Revell, Tyndale, Barbour, Steeple Hill and Summerside Press. Known for her compelling plots and unforgettable characters, Susan has written contemporary and historical romances, romantic-suspense, thrillers, rom-com and Christmas novellas.

Connect with Susan by visiting susanmaywarren.com to follow her on social media or subscribe to email newsletter updates.

TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a paperback set of The Epic Story of RJ and York trilogy.

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight August 2, 2022 and lasts through 11:59 PM EST on August 9, 2022. US only. Items may vary from image. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

They Call Her Dirty Sally by Amy Matayo

 


For years, the town of Silver Bell, Arkansas has quietly mourned the hospital fire that claimed the lives of nine of its residents—the town doctor, a young expectant mother, and seven infants. So, when journalist Finn Hardwick is assigned the story as part of a national thirtieth anniversary memorial service, he arrives at the town ready to interview its residents, thinking they’ll be ready to share and eager to make headlines.

He isn’t prepared for the resistance. Or for what appears to be a collective unwillingness to answer his questions.

Faced with one roadblock after another, Finn enlists the help of Billi Ellis, the young motel receptionist that everyone in the town seems to like. Maybe she can get them to open up to him. Maybe she can help him make sense of everything he keeps uncovering. Especially the unexpected tie this tragedy appears to have to his own life.

A tie that leads him directly to the old woman who seems to hold the key to everything. The woman everyone avoids…the woman they call “dirty”…the woman who hasn’t spoken a word to anyone since the day the hospital burned.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

I rarely read blurbs, and that is especially true for authors that I am familiar with and whose books I know I love.  I knew from the title that this book might be a bit different but this author has a history of surprising me with stories in the best ways so of course I was in. 

My heart.  What I wasn't prepared for was the depth of thought and emotion that came with reading this book.  The overwhelming heartbreak and sadness and honestly, the embarrassment on behalf of humankind that would allow these kinds of things to happen.   

My head.  Full of all kinds of thoughts.  Looking back, looking forward, looking at the present.  What am I guilty of?  How can I do better?  Any of us that have an influence on children in any capacity need to be teaching by words and actions, love and kindness.  Compassion and a desire to help those who look like they might need it.  We need more Paul's in the world.  Thank goodness Sally had a Paul.  Paul took a stand.  He did everything in his power to help, to make Sally's world better.  I want to be Paul.

Two of my favorite things happened in this book.  Thinking and feeling.  That's how I know a book is a good one.  This story is going to stay with me for a long, long time.

Content:  alcoholism, child neglect, bullying, intimate relations behind closed doors with no details but you know they happen.  Mild swearing.

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


Friday, July 15, 2022

Love on Camera (Wonder Boys Series) by Dana LeCheminant

 


Madi doesn’t have time to date. Oliver has all the time in the world.

When wedding photographer Madi is challenged to find herself ten dates in three months, she turns to her older brother’s three best friends to be her stand-ins. It helps her win the challenge without having to deal with the stress of dating. What could go wrong?

Oliver hasn’t had much to do since selling his company, and helping Madi has given his life meaning again. But when she asks him to pose as her boyfriend—more than just a date here and there—he suddenly finds himself questioning his feelings toward the girl he always saw as a little sister. Feelings that would get him murdered by his best friend.

No one sees the real Oliver the way Madi does, and Madi has never been as comfortable around anyone as she is with Oliver. With the fake part of their relationship feeling less and less fake, they both have to decide if they’re brave enough to take that first step toward something real. Is a chance at love worth risking a lifetime of friendship?


Cute, cute, cute, cute.  This book is honestly just so cute (and so is the cover!! 😍).  Author Dana LeCheminant really nailed this friends to lovers story between Oliver and Madi who have known each other since they were little.  Both Oliver and Madi are gentle people who keep feelings and difficulties close to themselves.  They aren't loud or showy, but steady and wicked good at what they do.  I really loved them both- separately and together, as friends and then as more.  My heart was seriously chanting all the hopeful things, "risk it!  Do it!  Kiss her!"  You get the idea.  πŸ˜‰

I think one of my favorite scenes was when Oliver was running in a park and saw Madi doing a photoshoot.  He watches her and then gets caught so he pretends to be stretching.  He was trying to play it so cool.  It played out in my head like a scene in a movie.

Good news!  This is the first book in a new series.  We are introduced to the Wonder Boys in this book and man, their stories are going to be fun!  I can't wait to read them!

This book is on KU if you have that.

Content:  kissing

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

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Shield and Blade: A Fate of Eyrinthia Novella by Heather Frost

 


His to protect

When Vera broke Venn’s heart, he was shattered. When she was abducted by mercenaries, he vowed to tear Mortise apart to find her. Now, reunited, he is determined to keep her safe–and win back her heart. Of course, things are never that simple.

Hers to defend

Vera has regretted hurting Venn ever since that fateful night in Wexon, but finding the right time to tell him is proving difficult. Traveling with him to Duvan should give her the perfect opportunity, but things take an unexpected turn when they find young children abandoned near a roadside.

Theirs to save

Helping the children isn’t in question, but the detour leads Venn and Vera into the heart of a sinister mystery. The truth they fight to uncover could change everything in Eyrinthia–and may cost them their lives.

Shield & Blade is book 3.5 in the Fate of Eyrinthia YA fantasy romance series. It is best enjoyed after reading Royal Captive.


It's no secret that I love this series.  I seriously tell anyone who will listen to me.  So of course I am excited about this new novella (which is honestly long enough to be a novel) and even more excited because it fills in a part of the story from Royal Captive that we were left wondering about.  It's Vera and Venn's story!!  

I'm not even a bit embarrassed to say that I sat in my comfy chair all day and devoured this book.  I read it from beginning to end with almost no interruptions.  How lucky is that?!  I adore both Vera and Venn.  And when those children enter the picture?  The adoration levels skyrocketed.  Through the roof.  The danger keeps coming, relentless in nature, but Vera and Venn hold steady.  They are strong, loyal, brave and kind.  The very best kind of heroes.

Love, love, love, love.  πŸ’™

Content:  violence, peril, death, mention of torture.  Kissing.

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


Heather Frost is a #1 Amazon Bestselling YA author who loves epic stories with breath-stealing romance. She is the author of the Seers trilogy and the Fate of Eyrinthia series. Her books have been Whitney Award Finalists and Swoony Award Finalists. She has a BS in Creative Writing and a minor in Folklore, which means she got to read fairy tales and call it homework. When she’s not writing, Heather likes to read, travel, and re-watch Lord of the Rings. She lives in a beautiful valley surrounded by towering mountains in northern Utah. To learn more about Heather and her books, visit her website: www.HeatherFrost.com




Tuesday, July 5, 2022

The Deadly Shallows (Coastal Guardians #3) by Dani Pettrey

 


A DEADLY ATTACK.
A STOLEN WEAPON CAPABLE OF IMMENSE DESTRUCTION.
A PAINFUL SECRET THAT THREATENS TO TEAR TWO HEARTS APART.

CGIS Agent Noah Rowley is rocked to the core when several of his valued team members come under fire on his Coast Guard base. He and his remaining team race to the scene and end the attack, but not before innocent lives are lost. Furious and grief-stricken, he vows to do whatever is needed to bring the mastermind behind the attack to justice.

Stunned by the ambush, Coast Guard flight medic Brooke Kesler evacuates in a helicopter carrying the only surviving gunman. The gravely wounded man whispers mysterious information to Brooke that immediately paints a target on her back.

As Brooke and Noah race to uncover answers, emotions between them ignite. Noah struggles to protect Brooke at all costs and to conceal the secret that prevents him from becoming what he longs to be--the right man for her.

Everything is at stake as a horrifying truth emerges. . . .

The attack wasn't the end game. It was only the beginning.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

When you decide to read this book, you should block out a solid chunk of time because you aren't going to want to put this book down.  It's fast paced and full of danger, action and mystery.  I love romantic suspense and this author does it so well.  

This book starts out in the thick of the danger and the plot grows with intensity and scope throughout the book.  The bad guys are obvious to the reader but not the characters, so that gave me anxiety.  haha.  The tension was strong and I was reading so quickly I had to purposefully slow myself down and remind myself to savor and enjoy.  It didn't really work. 

Brooke and Noah are friends.  They both want more but neither of them is laying it on the table in the beginning. Then, all the bad things happen and that sure has a way of changing how you look at relationships and life.  I love the way Noah shifted to protector mode.  He is smart and loyal and good.  The same can be said of Brooke.  They both jump into danger to protect people and they have an awesome team of friends and coworkers around them to assist them in this.

This is the third book in this series and I would recommend reading it in order because I think you will be happier if you do.  Characters from previous books are in this book so it will make those personal connections even better.

Content:  peril, violence, death.  Torture mentioned but not describe in great detail.  Kissing.  Christian elements.

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


Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Not Dead Yet (Guardian #6) by Traci Hunter Abramson



Cassidy Edgemont has been dead for four years. At least, that is what the world has been led to believe. After becoming unwittingly entangled in a group called the Coalition, known for using fake news to generate political unrest in the United States, Cas was offered a devastating choice: stage her own death and join her rescuers, the guardians, or risk the wrath of the organization she betrayed. She chose death.

As an invisible government operative, Cas has been living in Paris with no complications—until her family pays an unexpected visit to the European city, changing everything. They think Cas is dead, and she has to keep it that way. But when a bomb is detonated nearby and fake news incites riots in the city, Cas recognizes the mark of the Coalition.

Donovan, a fellow guardian, is summoned to join her in Paris to attempt to untangle the intricate web linking Cas’s past with the recent bombings. But as the threat level escalates, Cas must again make an impossible decision: face possible exposure to her family in her race to uncover the truth or risk the loss of innocent lives.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

Wa-hoo!  I feel like cheering because we finally have another book in the Guardian series!  I love this series so much.  Romantic suspense!!  This book is just good entertainment in reading.  Danger, suspense, and a bit of romance.  Smart, strong characters.  What more could I want?  Well, I always want more as a reader, especially from this author writing in this genre.  I'm greedy like that.

Cas and Donovan have both given up so much.  Life is lonely for them both and I just felt so sad for them, especially as we got to know more and more of their backstories.  My heart really wanted a happily ever after sort of beginning for them.  They worked well together and I loved how their friendship grew each day.  It was a gentle sort of romance that took a backseat to the plot driving the story forward but I sure do love driving plots.  So exciting!

I also want to go to Paris and eat all the food.  Also, I was so glad to see old friends from previous books popping up in this story, giving this series the feeling of family.

I loved this book!  It's a great addition to this series, which is one of my favorites.  Go grab it, curl up with it and be entertained, beginning to end.  Thank me later.  πŸ˜‰ 

Content:  peril, mild violence, kissing.

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



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Friday, June 24, 2022

Sunburst (Sky King Ranch Book #2) by Susan May Warren

 


When former Navy SEAL and lifelong bachelor Ranger Kingston is called upon to take part in a rescue mission to save his brother Colt, who has been kidnapped by terrorists in Nigeria, he is shocked to find among the hostages a woman he knows and could never forget.

Noemi Sutton was attempting to return a young girl to her family in Boko Haram territory when she and the girl found themselves taken hostage, along with several others.

And while Ranger Kingston may be able to get the hostages away from their captors, he'll need Noemi's help if he ever hopes to get out of Nigeria alive.

Her solution? Pose as husband and wife. But when her uncle discovers the union, he insists on a traditional Nigerian wedding--binding Noemi to a man destined to break her heart. Worse, she's discovered the real reason she was kidnapped, and anyone around her is bound to be caught in the cross fire. Including her so-called new husband.

She'll need to figure out a way to leave the man she loves if she wants to save his life.

 * Amazon * Goodreads *

Romantic suspense anyone?  It's one of my favorite genres and this author does it really well.  Sunburst is book two in this series that really needs to be read in order.  Each book builds on the storyline with the main focus shifting to different characters.  Just trust me and read this series in order.  πŸ˜‰

Right out of the gate we are thrust right into a dangerous hostage situation.  Well, first the prologue, which was very sweet and set things up romantically between Ranger and Noemi.  Then the dangerous situation.  It started in Africa and ended in Alaska, if you can imagine that.  The danger is pretty much a constant in this book as you start to feel the plot and the "bad guys" converging.  I love that we still have the whole Kingston family starring in this even as Ranger is in the spotlight.  Ranger.  So tough.  So tortured by things past and present.  So honorable.  I loved him.  Of course I did.  

Noemi?  Probably equally as tough as Ranger.  She's definitely no stranger to loss and hurt yet she doesn't give up.  I loved the glimpse into the heritage and tradition of Nigerians.  It was so interesting.

I loved the momentum of this book because it just didn't let up.  It was either run for you life or emotional connections and that kept me invested the whole way through.  This book ends in an emotionally satisfying way for Ranger and Noemi but in a plot hanger, if you know what I mean.  The plot is still ongoing and I can only hope that these Kingston brothers can stay alive to see it all to the end!  They are smack dab in the middle of a very dangerous game.  I'm SO looking forward to the next book!!   Now to bring my heartrate back to normal. . .

Content:  peril, violence, death. Christian elements.  Kissing.

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


Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Praying with the Enemy by Steven T. Collis

 


Based on the true story of an American POW during the Korean War and a North Korean soldier who become unlikely allies united in their shared faith in God during a daring escape to freedom.


When pilot Captain Ward Millar is forced to eject over enemy territory in North Korea, the ejection explosion snaps both of his ankles. Unable to walk, he is easily captured by North Korean and Chinese soldiers who interrogate, threaten, and starve him for strategic wartime information. He feeds the enemy false information while plotting his escape. But it's only a matter of time before they discover his lies. He knows it will take a miracle to gain his freedom, but his previous self-reliance on his own capabilities has never included appealing to a higher power. If only he had faith like his wife, Barbara, whose firm belief in God can move mountains.

North Korean soldier Kim Jae Pil was raised to believe in the power of prayer, but, knowing the Communist Party's views on religious groups, Kim and his family must keep their Christian faith secret. He is desperate to escape the army, return to his family, and then flee to South Korea.

With Millar imprisoned and unable to walk, and the North Korean army increasingly suspicious of Kim's actions, it seems impossible that either man will find the freedom they so desperately desire. But when these wartime foes cross paths, they find in each other an unlikely ally. Despite speaking different languages, Millar and Kim find common ground in their fragile faith and must rely on each other to undertake a daring escape.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

This book really highlights two of my favorite things when reading.  Historical fiction and based on a true story.  I love when those two genres meet!  I haven't read a lot about the Korean War- some, but not a lot.  I know the basics but this story really brought home the feelings of that war and what all the people affected by it must have felt.

I enjoyed the differing perspectives- mostly Ward Millar and Kim Jae Pil, but we also got Ward's wife and a couple others.  This story was engaging and easy to settle into.  I read through it quickly.  The pictures at the end of the book were awesome- I love getting to see the real people!  Ward Millar and Kim Jae Pil were both so courageous, so smart.  They were always thinking, always trying to overcome the poor circumstances they were dealt.  

Overall, for me, this was a great read.  I really love historical fiction and this author did a good job of setting the story up beautifully in my head.

Content:  war time violence, POW experiences, peril.  Talk of God, praying and faith.

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

Monday, June 6, 2022

Places We've Never Been by Kasie West

 


A sweet and swoony contemporary Young Adult novel about a cross-country family road trip that puts one girl and her childhood best friend on an unexpected road to romance!

Norah hasn’t seen her childhood best friend, Skyler, in years. When he first moved away, they'd talk all the time, but lately their relationship has been reduced to liking each other’s Instagram posts. That’s why Norah can’t wait for the joint RV road trip their families have planned for the summer.

But when Skyler finally arrives, he seems...like he’d rather be anywhere else. Hurt and confused, Norah reacts in kind. Suddenly, her oldest friendship is on the rocks.

An unexpected summer spent driving across the country leads both Norah and Skyler down new roads and to new discoveries. Before long, they are, once again, seeing each other in a different light. Can their friendship-turned-rivalry turn into something more?


I don't read a lot of YA books but author Kasie West is an author whose books I never miss.  She really has a way of making characters and situations feel realistic.  This book is about reconnecting with old friends, building new connections and dealing with life's tough moments.  It's family and it's friends.  It's learning to trust again.  It's adventure!

Norah and Skyler have a bumpy road back to friendship from all misunderstandings.  But, as per usual, once they started communicating and stop fighting, they figured it all out.  All the characters were easy to settle in with and I enjoyed them all.

I loved the two family road trip and the different places they went.  I've been lots of those places too so it was easy to imagine where they were and what they were doing and seeing.  The story felt very age appropriate and it made me smile. This is a book I would have easily passed off to my daughters when they were teenagers.  They would have loved it.

Content:  kissing

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

Thursday, May 12, 2022

The Orphan Circus by Jane Redd

 


Some chances happen only once in a lifetime.


For Rook, it’s either the circus, or stay at the orphanage.
And become nothing. Stay nothing.
For Mari, she will follow Rook. For now. Until she can escape her own past.

* Amazon * Goodreads *

I first started reading this book as part of the Kindle Vella program but I didn't finish it.  I'm glad I finally had the chance to read the whole things from beginning to end.  It's a really fast read, novella in length, so it didn't take long at all.

Rook and Mari are the underdogs for sure.  I was firmly in their corner, rooting for them from the very first pages.  They are endearing and so deserving of all things good.  What I loved most about them is the way they stayed together and took care of each other.  Especially Rook.  He's so good to Mari.  I absolutely loved him.  

I wish this story had been longer.  It ended too soon for me and I wanted more.

Content:  mention of whippings, a fight, mild peril, a sweet kiss.  

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