Thursday, April 28, 2022

Fatal Code (The SNAP Agency #2) by Natalie Walters



In 1964, a group of scientists called the Los Alamos Five came close to finishing a nuclear energy project for the United States government when they were abruptly disbanded. Now the granddaughter of one of those five scientists, aerospace engineer Elinor Mitchell, discovers that she has highly sensitive information on the project in her possession--and a target on her back.

SNAP agent and former Navy cryptologist Kekoa Young is tasked with monitoring Elinor. This is both convenient since she's his neighbor in Washington, DC, and decidedly inconvenient because . . . well, he kind of likes her.

As Elinor follows the clues her grandfather left behind to a top-secret nuclear project, Kekoa has no choice but to step in. When Elinor learns he has been spying on her, she's crushed. But with danger closing in on all sides, she'll have to trust him to ensure her discoveries stay out of enemy hands.

Natalie Walters sucks you into the global race for space domination in this perfectly paced second installment of her SNAP Agency romantic suspense series.

 * Amazon * Goodreads

The SNAP Agency series is starting to feel like family.  This second book is bringing me closer to the characters and I am becoming more and more invested in them.  Kekoa is a big personality and I loved his spotlight adventure here.  Kekoa does a lot of stretching outside of his comfort zone and has a great arc of healing and growth.  I enjoyed him so much!

Intensity grows steadily in this story.  All the little moments are leading up to the big, final moments and it's so good.  I loved the urgency that came in the last bit of the book, the danger and yes, the wee bit of romance.  I read through this book so quickly and enjoyed it from beginning to end.

I love how the characters in this series are in every book.  I can't wait to read the next one!  I have a feeling it's going to be quite dynamic!  This book releases on May 3rd, 2022.

Content:  peril, mild violence, Christian fiction elements, kissing

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

Monday, April 25, 2022

Facing the Enemy by Paige Edwards + Enter To Win A Copy of This Book!


Lady Elise Henderson lives two separate lives. At home in Scotland, she’s the titled daughter of the Marquess of Roxbury, an heiress in her own right. In London, however, she’s Elise Taylor, a top MI6 operative for the “home office.” But when a devastating accident threatens to end her career, Elise is left with far too much time for self-reflection and the regret of a decision made long ago that features one man: fellow MI6 agent Harry Benson.

Harry Benson, the son of servants, has loved Elise for the better part of a decade. But life took them on separate journeys until their worlds converged once more. An immediate assignment to the Scottish Borders leaves Harry little time to make provisions for his small, rambunctious son, Sammy. Harry knows only one person he can rely on for the boy’s care—Elise. When Elise brings Sammy to her ancestral estate, she never imagines that a nemesis from her past looms in the shadows, hungry for revenge. Stalked at every turn, Elise and Harry discover that fighting their feelings for one another is futile, but can they survive long enough to get another shot at true love?

 * Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

This book is encompasses all things I love about romantic suspense.  I love this genre and I love this author writing it!  I hope she never stops.

Elise and Harry have a history so when their paths cross again, there are some layered emotions and misunderstandings.  Elise is one tough lady with a lot on her heart.  After a recent accident where she lost her M16 partner, Elise receives some devastating news.  She is struggling when Harry reenters her life but that little rascal Sammy sure provides some over the top distractions with his penchant for getting in trouble.

The bad guy is SO bad.  The danger is clear in it's progression and as a reader I felt it ramping up and closing in.  It was such an exciting feeling and I loved it!  Elise is the rock star of the show taking on the Scottish wilderness AND Sammy in one dramatic cat and mouse game.  I was glued to the pages the last third of the book and so glad I had uninterrupted reading time so I could engage and invest in the best way possible.  What a fun adventure this was!  I can't wait for more!

Content:  mild peril and violence.  Some talk of killing and death.  Kissing. 

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

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Thursday, April 21, 2022

Mulberry Hollow (Riverbend #2) by Denise Hunter



Contractor Wes Mathews is nearly finished hiking the Appalachian Trail in honor of his recently deceased best friend when he falls terribly ill. He stumbles into the nearest town and soon finds himself indebted to the beautiful young doctor who owns the clinic. In lieu of payment, he proposes a trade that will keep him in town—and away from obligations to his best friend’s sister—for several weeks.

But as Avery and Wes spend time together, their friendship begins moving into unexpected territory. Soon they both begin to question their plans for the future. But will Wes be able to let go of the debt he owes his best friend? And will Avery find the courage to risk everything for love?

 * Goodreads * Amazon

I've been looking forward to this book ever since I finished the first book!  I love the small town setting nestled along the Appalachian Trail.  Avery's clinic and home is in the most picturesque place with a river running behind it.  It just sounds so lovely.

Avery and Wes have a relationship that grows so naturally and fluidly.  They were so comfortable with each other and I really felt that come through as a reader.  Both Avery and Wes are battling some big challenges that require courage and heart.  All I can say is thank goodness for good people in their lives, helping them to get to the right decisions to find happiness and peace.  It was so easy to like both Avery and Wes.  They are the kind of people I would like to be friends with.

This is a sweet, gentle story with strong, well defined characters. 

And now I will not so patiently wait for book three because Avery's brother deserves such a happily ever after.  I'm desperate for him to get it. 

Content:  kissing. Mild Christian elements.

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


Tuesday, April 19, 2022

The Unknown Beloved by Amy Harmon



From the bestselling author of Where the Lost Wander and What the Wind Knows comes the evocative story of two people whose paths collide against the backdrop of mystery, murder, and the Great Depression.

Chicago, 1923: Ten-year-old Dani Flanagan returns home to find police swarming the house, her parents dead. Michael Malone, the young patrolman assigned to the case, discovers there’s more to the situation—and to Dani Flanagan herself—than the authorities care to explore. Malone is told to shut his mouth, and Dani is sent away to live with her spinster aunts in Cleveland.

Fifteen years later, Michael Malone is summoned to Cleveland to investigate a series of murders that have everyone stumped, including his friend and famed Prohibition agent Eliot Ness, now Cleveland’s director of safety. There, in a city caught in the grip of a serial killer, Malone’s and Dani’s paths cross once again.

Malone is drawn to Dani and her affinity for the dead and compassion for the destitute. It doesn’t take long for him to realize that she could help him solve his case. As terror descends on the city and Malone and Dani confront the dark secrets that draw them together, it’s a race to find the killer or risk becoming his next victims.

 * Amazon * Goodreads

Author Amy Harmon is probably the only author I would follow down the path to a serial killer/murder mystery book.  I was so torn as to whether I wanted to read this one but ultimately I decided that yes, I would.  Because, well, Amy Harmon.  I'm not really a fan of these kinds of books, they tend to freak me out.  Yeah, I'm a lightweight.  I was a bit freaked out with this story, if I'm being honest, but only because it really did happen.  The author did a good job of creating characters and adding humanity for me to connect to.

Dani is my favorite.  Such a unique individual with a big heart and a clear head.  I loved her every movement, word and thought in this book.  What a powerful message came through her.

The details of the murders in this book were true to actual reports.  Such a gruesome, horrible thing to read about.  That was probably the worst part of it all for me.  The details.  I had such a hard time with it because creating a movie in my head with things like that is not where I want to be.  That is in no way the author's fault.  It's just my personal preference.  If this author writes in this particular genre again, I might not go there with her but I'm pretty much game for anything else she writes!

Content:  death, violence, details of murders including dismemberment and beheading.  Kissing, some sexual content (fade to black).  Frequent mild swearing. 

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

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

A Brilliant Night of Stars and Ice by Rebecca Connolly


Based on the remarkable true story of the Carpathia—the one ship and her legendary captain who answered the distress call of the sinking Titanic.

Shortly after midnight on April 15, 1912, the captain of the Carpathia, Arthur Rostron, wakes to a distress signal from the Titanic, which has struck an iceberg on its maiden voyage. Though information is scarce, Rostron leaps into action, determined to answer the call for help. But the Carpathia is more than four hours away, and there are more questions than answers: Will his ship hold together if pushed to never-before-tested speeds? What if he also strikes an iceberg? And with the freezing temperatures, will there be any survivors by the time the Carpathia arrives?

Kate Connolly is a third-class passenger on Titanic, and she is among the last to receive instruction and help after it hits an iceberg. Despite the chaos of abandoning ship, Kate is able to board a lifeboat, though after seeing the Titanic sink into the abyss and hearing the cries from hundreds of people still in the water, she wonders if any rescue is even possible. 

Told in alternating chapters from both Captain Rostron and Kate Connolly, this novel is a compelling, heart-pounding account of two eyewitnesses to an epic disaster. Rostron’s heroic and compassionate leadership, his methodical preparations for rescue, and his grit and determination to act honorably and selflessly to save lives and care for the survivors, sets the course for this awe-inspiring story.

* Amazon * Goodreads * Deseret Book *

Another fantastic historical fiction book for the WIN!  Historical fiction is honestly one of my favorite genres because I love learning about events in history in a more story like fashion.  Everyone knows about the Titanic, but not everyone knows about the Carpathia and it's captain and crew who saved the survivors of the Titanic.  I surely didn't but I'm so glad I had this opportunity to learn about it here.  Captain Rostron and his crew were ordinary people who did an extraordinary thing.  It deserves being known and remembered.

I loved the alternating perspectives of Arthur Rostron and Kate.  Kate was on the Titanic and having her viewpoint was so important to the story.  It gave both sides to this story feeling and depth.

After finishing this book my husband asked me how it was.  Boy, did he get an earful because I wanted him to know all about the Carpathia too.  I know the story of the Titanic is horrific but it was nice to read about the good people who worked so hard to help and make a difference in the lives of the survivors.  Just over 700 of them.

Here's a look at the heroic Captain Arthur Rostron!

Amazing, right?  I love having a picture of him.  Real life.  Real person.  The author does a follow up after the story so we know what happened to the main characters, who were based off real people.  That was fun to read too.

I really loved this book.  Can you tell?!  😁  This is one I will be recommending to historical fiction lovers.  I love the cover too.

Content:  death, peril.

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

REBECCA CONNOLLY is the author of more than two dozen novels. She calls herself a Midwest girl, having lived in Ohio and Indiana. She’s always been a bookworm, and her grandma would send her books almost every month so she would never run out.

Book Fairs were her carnival, and libraries are her happy place. She received a master’s degree from West Virginia University.

 Learn more about Rebecca and her books at

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

Before the Fortress Falls A.L. Sowards + Enter to Win A Copy of This Book!


Their fight for survival would change the course of history.

When rumors reach Vienna that an attack by the Ottoman army is imminent, Wilhelm von Schor, one of the emperor’s courtiers, prepares to evacuate his family—including his sister, Katja. But Katja’s reluctance to leave the city and the people she loves so well grows the farther the family carriage gets from her childhood home. When she learns that another brother, Xavier, is returning to Vienna with his musketeers, she decides to remain behind and face the shadow of war.

Katja soon reunites with Xavier and also with Toby, a dear friend from childhood. As Katja and Toby renew their friendship, an element of attraction builds on the comradery of their youth, and they quickly realize they have found something worth fighting for: love. But all too soon, the Ottomans encircle the city, blanketing its inhabitants in fear. Katja, Toby, and Xavier must each fulfill their new roles if they are to survive. In the overcrowded hospitals, below ground in the countermines, and on the ramparts defending the city walls, the three must fight for love, family, faith, and the survival of their city and everyone inside.

 * Goodreads * Amazon * Deseret Book * 

I absolutely love historical fiction- especially ones by this author.  She is so dedicated to research and an accurate showing of events that I know I am getting a good feel for the story just as it played out.  A.L. Sowards is a master storyteller and I always feel so fortunate reading her books.

This book is based on war.  Vienna and her determined people, fighting to save their city, their people, their way of life.  Because it's war, this story is a hard one to read.  There is so much sorrow, loss and fighting but there is also inspiration to be found.  Threads of hope and most definitely resilience.  The story follows three siblings and their different paths throughout the war.  I learned things as I read and that always feels good.  I didn't really understand mines and countermines so that part was especially interesting to me.  I actually didn't know anything about this particular battle in Vienna before reading this but one day when I make it to Vienna, I will think of this story and remember as I witness it's current beauty.

I also felt my compassion growing for those who are facing the ravaging effects of war right now.  It all feels so real and raw.  My heart aches for the many people suffering.

"You keep working, and you keep praying.  Grip your hope tightly and don't let it go.  Clouds may darken it, may blot it out completely, but it's worth holding on to, even when you can't feel it or see it."

This book brought me to tears.  My emotion was real and that's how I know this story is a great one.  Not many books bring my tears flowing.  💙

Content:  violence- most graphic in nature, death, peril, kissing.  There are Christian elements and talk of God.

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

About the Author:

A. L. Sowards is the author of multiple historical fiction novels, with settings spanning the globe from the fourteenth to twentieth centuries. Her stories have earned a Whitney Award, several Whitney Finalists positions, and a Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal. She enjoys hiking and swimming, usually manages to keep up with the laundry, and loves it when someone else cooks dinner. She currently lives in the beautiful state of Alaska with her husband, three children, and an ever-growing library.

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Monday, April 4, 2022

All That It Takes by Nicole Deese


When the ever-cautious Val Locklier finally agrees to a cross-country move with her nine-year-old son to take a job with her best friend, Molly, everything she had planned for the future unravels within the first week. After pushing aside her anxieties about renting an apartment from Molly's twin brother, whom she barely knows, she accepts an invitation for an elite filmmaker's mentorship. Caught between her insecurities and new possibilities, she feels completely unprepared for the challenges ahead.

Pastor Miles McKenzie returns home from abroad to discover that not only does he have an intriguing new tenant living upstairs, he's been banished to a ministry on life support. Disillusioned and restless, he pursues a relationship with Val without stopping to consider the timing or asking God to direct his steps.

As Val struggles to stop hiding behind the camera and Miles wrestles with shattered expectations, they'll find that authentic love and sacrifice must go hand in hand.

 * Amazon * Goodreads * BookBub

Author Nicole Deese has once again written a story filled with emotion and love in so many forms.  No matter if I've experienced exactly what these characters have experienced or not, I still feel those emotions and then connect to them.  That is a really good feeling as a reader.

Val and Miles know sacrifice but in different ways.  They know about hard things and they both have insecurities.  Their relationship goes from acquaintances to friendship to romance in a natural feeling way.  It was easy to believe and easy to settle in with.  Val and Miles are both so easy to like.  I enjoyed the side characters, especially Val's son.  He was a fun addition, bringing light and joy to all the scenes he was in.  The message of reaching out and helping even just one person, to change their trajectory from lonely, sad and even desperate, to one of love, acceptance and peace is a good reminder today (and every day).  We all can be a little more aware of others and a little kinder to them.

I love the cover of this book- it feels just like the story I just read.  Plus, blue is my favorite color.  💙

This book is Christian Fiction and as Miles is a pastor, there is a heavy base of God and Christian themes.

Content:  kissing

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