Review: An Amish Homecoming

An Amish Homecoming

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Four brand new Amish stories of coming home.

No Place Like Home  by Amy Clipston

Estranged daughter Eva Dienner has been staying with her in-laws, the Riehls, since her husband was killed in a fire, but now she wants her son to meet his maternal grandparents. Upon her return, Eva finds that the man her parents always intended for her is living in their daadihaus and running the dairy farm for them for free, despite her suspicions of him taking advantage of her family. Eva knows she should put the past behind her, but is she ready to move into the future?

When Love Returns  by Beth Wiseman

Hurricane Harvey forces Sarah Zook to return to the home she fled six years ago when she couldn’t face her stern parents’ reaction to her unplanned pregnancy. Upon her return, Abram King can think of nothing but the pain she caused him—until he meets Sarah’s daughter and realizes that he never really stopped loving Sarah. Sarah and Abram must find a way to face the truth of their past so they can rekindle their first love.

The Courage to Love  by Shelley Shepard Gray

After the death of her Englisch husband, Irene Keim seeks a fresh start by staying with her new friends Mary Ruth and Henry Wengerd in exchange for helping them around the house. But when Mary Ruth and Henry’s son Marcus comes around, he isn’t pleased with the woman they’ve taken in and is determined to push her out. Misunderstandings abound, but both Irene and Marcus learn that people aren’t always what they seem.

What Love Built by Kathleen Fuller

Independent and headstrong, Carolyn is determined to forge ahead with the opening of her bakery, a lifelong dream, in the Birch Creek home she left ten years ago. But she’s in over her head and needs help with the cleaning, shopping, and deliveries. Carpenter Atlee Shetler is visiting Birch Creek to escape the memories of his late wife. He takes a job renovating the new bakery and finds the project—and its owner—to be much more than he bargained for. Both Carolyn and Atlee must face pains of the past if they want to have the bright future God has planned for them.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

An Amish Homecoming is a wonderful collection of four novellas. These Amish stories have captured my heart and soul. Each writer has infused a different lesson to be learned in her story. It was entertaining to follow the characters as the followed their hearts and dreams. Challenges were presented in a way that felt real. I also felt like I was a member of the Amish communities inside this collection. There is plenty of humor, faith, and love to explore here. The writers have brought the lost, the grieving, and the hurt together. It was an awe inspiring journey in each part of this book. Overall, I enjoyed reading An Amish Homecoming and recommend it to all.

 

Review: The Distant Sound of Thunder

The Sound of Distant Thunder (The Amish of Weaver's Creek #1)

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Katie Stuckey and Jonas Weaver are both romantics. Seventeen-year-old Katie is starry-eyed, in love with the idea of being in love, and does not want to wait to marry Jonas until she is eighteen, despite her parents’ insistence. So much can happen in a year. Twenty-year-old Jonas is taken in by the romance of soldiering, especially in defense of anti-slavery, even though he knows war is at odds with the teachings of the church. When his married brother’s name comes up in the draft list, he volunteers to take his brother’s place. But can the commitment Katie and Jonas have made to each other survive the separation?

From the talented pen of Jan Drexler comes this brand new Amish series set against the backdrop of the Civil War. She puts her characters to the test as they struggle to reconcile their convictions and desires while the national conflict threatens to undermine and engulf their community.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Distant Sound of Thunder by Jan Drexler gives an insider’s view to the realities of an Amish lifestyle. The people are forbidden to live like the outsiders. Violence is not their way of life. However, a young Amish man wants to serve in the military. But he has decisions to make. He has a young Amish woman waiting for his hand in marriage and he has to follow the community rules. Despite what his community says, young Jonas enlists in the army in his brother’s place. I was amazed at the young man’s courage and bravery. He steps up to serve his country and at the same time manages a way to follow his faith. Jan Drexler offers a clean Christian read full of emotions. I recommend this book to readers everywhere.

Review: A Place of His Own

Place of His Own

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

When Josiah left Paradise the first time, he didn’t even say good-bye. Now he’s back, ten years later, and he’s changed. Why is he so distant and bitter? Where is the boy who used to be Amanda’s best friend? Amanda is learning that there are things even a capable Amish girl can’t fix. But can she stand there and watch him walk away . . . again?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

A Place of His Own by Kathleen Fuller is a sad but beautifully written story. I cried a lot throughout this short story. I felt Josiah’s pain, anger, and loss. He lost his mother due to cancer, his father was full of anger and beat him constantly. The father was also a drunk who took Josiah away from the community and girl he loved. Now, as an adult, Josiah returns. Full of bad memories, hurt, and a need to be loved again. He tries pushing away his emotions. But he never expected his crush to turn into the beautiful woman she is. Still stubborn, kind, and full of life, Amanda wants to reach out and soothe Josiah’s pain. She knows only God can help him heal. But she also plays a major role in helping her friend heal and accept faith again. I enjoyed reading this book. Overall, I would highly recommend it to all.

 

Review: Santa’s on His Way by Lisa Jackson, Maisey Yates, Stacy Finz, and Nicole Helm

Santa's on His Way

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Open your heart to the holidays with these stories of unexpected love . . . 
 
A BABY FOR CHRISTMAS * Lisa Jackson
The uneventful Christmas Annie McFarlane expected is suddenly anything but. First, there’s the adorable baby left on the snowy doorstep of her Oregon cabin. Second, there’s the extremely attractive, yet extremely angry man claiming to be the father. Liam O’Shaughnessy may be intimidating, but this is one precious gift Annie isn’t giving up so easily . . .

WHAT THE COWBOY WANTS FOR CHRISTMAS * Maisey Yates
When Meg O’Neill’s longtime boyfriend lets her down, again, on Christmas no less, she braves an Oregon blizzard to get to her best friend Noah’s comforting arms. But this time Noah’s not telling her what she wants to hear—he’s telling her the truth, from his heart. And his words just might be the gift Meg’s been wishing for all along.

SNOWED IN * Stacy Finz
Rachel Johnson has found the perfect spot for her second Tart Me Up bakery in Glory Junction, California. Except she’s in fierce competition with hunky bar owner Boden Farmer. Worse, while the icy rivals await the city’s decision, they end up catering the same Christmas Eve mountaintop wedding—and getting snowed in. But sometimes a loss of electricity generates a different kind of heat . . .

A COWBOY WEDDING FOR CHRISTMAS * Nicole Helm
Big city art teacher Lindsay Tyler isn’t just back home in Colorado for her brother’s wedding at the Barton Christmas Tree Farm and Ranch. She’s back for good. She just hasn’t told anyone yet—including Cal Barton, the ex-boyfriend she left behind. Will it take a Christmas miracle for him to welcome her back with open arms? . . .

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Santa on His Way is a heartfelt collection of four romantic stories. Christmas has that magical feeling…and these characters have captured my heart.

In one story, I found a young, brave, yet broken hearted woman. Her one love, aka boyfriend, has let her down for the last time. She immediately goes to her best friend, Noah. Noah has loved Meg since he was seventeen. Nothing has ever stopped his feelings for her. He pushed them aside every time, because Meg was so wrapped up in the other guy. But now, they have a chance at forever. But will the always there Noah be brave enough to accept Meg as his?

The next story, presented me with two rivals. Each one wanting the old saw mill for a restaurant of sorts. One currently owns the town’s brewery and the other is the town’s baker. Then, they get stuck at a wedding reception during a snowstorm.  The cold has a way of bringing out the truth and romance. Can either one settle aside their anger and accept a partnership in both love and business?

The third tale, was about the youngest sibling of a cowboy family wanting to leave her ever demanding family. Lindsey wanted to find herself. But she never once thought how her leaving town affected the one man she loved and left behind. All those years, and Cal still loved her. His anger makes it hard for either one to move forward. But Lindsey isn’t backing down now. Love is worth fighting for…but only if Cal lets her back inside his heart.

The last story, is a about a woman whose husband divorced her. She went through a lot of miscarriages. It’s Christmas time, and Annie is feeling lonely with her dog. Until a noise brings her to her door where she finds a baby left behind. Puzzled, she finds a note addressed to her. The baby belonged to her sister who, couldn’t raise it. And the father didn’t want it. Then, there’s the other man who comes barging onto her doorstep. Liam thinks the baby is his. Nola set him for for murder and then recanted it. But he’s still a suspect to the police. Only Nola knows the absolute truth of the crimes committed. But it will take everything to trace her down and ask the questions. Liam won’t leave without the newborn baby. However, Annie isn’t sure it’s his and won’t let him take the baby away. Both want the baby. Christmas around the corner, a snowstorm, and a baby in the cabin leave for funny ideas. Romance, marriage, and creating a family…but can the characters find the truth and happiness before they lose everything that matters?

Overall, Santa’s on His Way is an amazing collection. I loved each of these romantic stories. Forgiveness, family, and finding love…are major themes. I highly recommend this contemporary set to all readers.

 

 

Review: The Girl From Spaceship Earth by Patricia Ravasio

The Girl from Spaceship Earth

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

The true story of a life intertwined with the utopian ideas of an American genius.

A mind-blowing two-day interview with iconic futurist Buckminster Fuller in 1982 Chicago leads an overeager advertising copywriter to promise she’ll share his urgent messages with the world. She has no idea what she is getting herself into, scarcely understanding what he is talking about.

When his dire predictions come true on America’s worst day (9/11) she must face up to her commitment, which morphs into a fiery obsession thanks to unsettling discoveries about Bucky’s archives further confirming the truth of his warnings. Her outsized passions threaten her relationships and her sanity as she grapples furiously to bring his ideas back into the world.

This heartrending karmic tell-all memoir is about climbing out of comfort zones to find your own voice and make a difference in the world. It also gives readers a charming introduction to the ideas of a long lost genius you’ve probably never heard of.

Rating: 5-stars

Review: 

The Girl From Spaceship Earth is a true story. One that is rare. A man with things to share with the planet ends up giving only one live interview. The young female journalist, ends up breaking her promise. But when what he predicts comes true, she rushes to tell the world. By then, was it too late? Could life be saved? The story held a sad, heartbreaking, yet dangerous outcome. And still we see evidence of those predictions becoming reality. I was deeply engaged with this book. The pages made it impossible to stop reading. These are things our planet needs to hear. Read it, now!

Review: Freshman Year of Life

Freshman Year of Life

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

38 essays from top millennial writers on how they survived their first years out of college—a book conceived and promoted by a groundbreaking crowdsourcing startup.

Freshman Year of Life tells the truth about life after college graduation. But this isn’t your standard step-by-step guide to landing that interview or surviving a long distance breakup with your college sweetheart, though there are stories on both these topics. Freshman Year of Life is a collection of essays from top millennial voices that have been there before, wish they’d known some things they didn’t, but made it through all the same. This is not your mother’s first year out of college book, but a starker more inclusive portrayal of what it’s like to be out of school for people from all walks of life. These are the people recent grads turn to on the Internet to offer poignant witty advice or sly one liners about pop culture and politics, and these are the personal stories their social media followers and fans haven’t heard. This anthology is full of advice, insights, and anecdotes from 38 millennial role models’ lives, the real stories that show just how disillusioning, hilariously embarrassing, and self-revelatory the transition to the adult world can be. Readers will delight in the honest and down to earth tone these authors take when looking back on their first years out of college, and will find it easier to tackle adulthood on their own because of it.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Freshman Year of Life is a collection of essays referring to life after college. It is a refreshing read. One that many young college people and recent graduates should read. There were a lot of circumstances that are easy to relate to and others that held very good advice. The pages are short and that made this entire book a quick read. The situations inside gave me a real perspective on work, home, and love. I especially, loved the essays centered around work related topics. It was like living through through individuals who wrote these essays. I found a lot of value to be held. Overall, I would highly recommend this to all young adults.

 

Review: The Amish Christmas Letters

The Amish Christmas Letters

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

With Christmas around the corner, it’s time for Amish families to include holiday greetings in their circle letters, each writer adding to a growing collection as it travels on to the next. In this delightful trio of stories, three cousins scattered across the country share their blessings—and reveal news of romantic surprises . . .

To win a friendly annual competition, matchmaker Marybeth Martin must bring one more couple together by Christmas. Her only prospect is a man more interested in a nanny than a wife—until his little girl shows him the light. . . . Struggling farmer’s daughter Katie Mae Kauffman discovers that she and a local widower and father of four can harvest more crops—and profits—together than separately. But she’ll have to put pride aside to make room for unexpected love. . . . Corralling an unruly brood of seven is not babysitter Carolyn Yutzy’s first choice for celebrating the season—but the sparks between her and their unsentimental yet irresistible uncle may be a gift neither was counting on . . .

Now, one by one, each resourceful young woman will have a holiday to remember—and to write home about . . .

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Amish Christmas Letters is a heartfelt Amish anthology that swept me off my feet. I loved the characters.

Marybeth is a single Amish woman trying to win a bet from her cousin. The loser has to house their mean relative. Only this bet ends up leaving Marybeth falling deep in love with the man she’s helping. As she works as a nanny, Marybeth gets to know the man she’s setting up…maybe, she will end up winning the Christmas met in more ways than expected. The man she’s trying to set up with a date, is strongly against marriage. But spending more time with Marybeth, the idea of marriage starts to look better. Then, there’s her cousin Katie.

Katie is a young unmarried Amish woman. Her father had a stroke and that left everything up to Katie to do. Doing women’s work in the house and keeping up with the farm, proves to be more than Katie can handle. Her Bishop notices it and sets a plan in motion. Little does Katie, her father, and the man with his kids know, but all of them will end up helping each other. At first, their resist the help and each other. But with a little more time, they each start to see the other one in a new light. From sassy and strong willed to becoming more than friends, these two were fun to follow.

Last, there was Carolyn. She was blindsided into babysitting for seven unruly kids. This one touched my heart even more so. The kids were misbehaving constantly, yet as soon as the parents entered into the scene, it was easy to see why. The children wanted their parents’ attention. Neither parent was giving their kids any attention. Their mother ignored their bad behavior. Their father refused to believe his kids were being bad. Both parents were to blame. At first, the children’s uncle thought it was Carolyn’s fault.  Thinking she was a bad babysitter, the uncle tried to get her fired. But he was wrong. Carolyn gave the kids more attention and love than their own parents. Soon or later, the parents would have to do something…In the meantime, Carolyn and their uncle keep bonding over the mishaps. Maybe, they will get their Christmas gift after all.

Overall, these three stories were sweet. I couldn’t stop reading them. The plots were fast. Plenty of action, intrigue, and romance to keep me interested. Themes such as faith, family, and love were shown. Obedience and respect were other lessons in this Amish journey. I recommend this collection to all readers.

 

Review: Cottage by the Sea by Debbie Macomber

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

A seaside town helps one young woman rediscover hope and healing in a brand-new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber.

After tragedy strikes, Annie moves in to the summer cottage where her family vacationed when she was a child. Soon Annie finds herself making new friends, even developing a romance with a quiet and mysterious painter. And as she becomes part of the community, Annie learns that the surest way to heal is by making a difference in the lives of those around her.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Debbie Macomber has created a perfect read in, Cottage by the Sea. It was heart lifting, inspiring, and emotionally charged. Anyone who wanted a sweet, yet clean romance will find it here. I love how the writer engaged me into her character’s roles and lives. Their troubles come tumbling after just like the waves that crashed the beach shore. Sometimes they just needed to embrace their struggles and fears, before they could move forward. Love, peace, and healing are included as themes for this book. The choice between a successful career and a caring place to call home are a temptation. Annie chose one. Cottage by the Sea was entertaining. The characters were realistic. I felt like I have known them for years. This story felt like Hallmark channel movie. I fell in love. Overall, I would recommend this title to all readers.

Review: A Devil in Scotland

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

The dawning of desire…

1806, Scotland: Wild, reckless Callum MacCreath is in no hurry to become someone’s husband. But when his responsible, steady older brother Ian announces his engagement to their childhood friend Rebecca, Callum makes a startling discovery: he wants the lovely young lass for himself. But it’s too late, and when Ian banishes him for his duplicity, he’s only too happy to leave Scotland forever…

…is delicious and dangerous.

1816: Marrying Ian was the practical, logical thing for Becca to do. But once Callum sailed away to America, she missed his rakish charm and lust for life. Now, ten years later, Becca is a widow when a much-changed Callum returns to his Scottish homeland. Will he remember their spirited, fiery connection, or does he blame her for his brother’s unexpected death? This time neither of them can deny their scorching attraction, but will their hearts be burned in the blazing heat of scandal?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

A Devil in Scotland by Suzanne Enoch is a very satisfying romance. I was instantly in love with the characters. Especially, the fallen hero who ends up redeeming himself. It’s a story I couldn’t resist.

Callum MacCreath is a Highlander at heart. Ten years ago, he figured out that the woman he loved was betrothed to his older brother, Ian. Wanting Becca, Callum tries to persuade Becca to marry him instead. Yet she wasn’t having it. And to top if all, he insulted his older brother, and made a drunken fool of himself in front of everyone, including Becca and Ian. Ian pushes Callum to leave their only home. Callum doesn’t hesitate and leaves without a penny to his name. Now, he’s brought back home by news of his older brother’s death. A drowning…his brother was the best swimmer and the water he drowned in was not deep enough to drown in…Callum knows who the killers are and his going to get them both. But first, family duty calls.

Becca was Callum’s and Ian best friend. Until she gets betrothed to Ian. That’s when, Callum realizes he’s loosing the one thing he thought he’d always have, Becca. Becca has always had a thing for Callum. However, all he has done was prove that he’s irresponsible, ignorant, and a drunk. He’s not to be trusted. That was ten years ago. Now, Becca has lost her husband and her father not too, long after each other. Becca is doing everything she can to find her way in life. Until Callum returns and comes claiming his inheritance. He always brings with him a lot of trouble. Enough to rattle Becca’s heart, and the two killers’ scheme to get Becca’s inheritance….plus, there’s Callum’s niece aka Becca’s daughter to consider.

A passion that never died…

Heat, danger, risks, and trust are found on every page.

A Devil in Scotland was everything I expected and more. Suzanna Enoch writes well. Her characters were charming. The Scottish rogue held my heart from the beginning. Then, there was the little girl, who brought so much joy and humor to Callum’s and Becca’s intense situation. I can’t wait to read more by this writer. Overall, I recommend this historical novel to all.

Review: The Proving 

Synopsis:

Having left the Amish life for the English world, Amanda Dienner is shocked when she learns that her mother has passed and left her Lancaster County’s most popular Amish bed-and-breakfast. The catch is she has to run it herself for one year, acting as hostess. Amanda accepts the terms, but coming home to people she left behind won’t be easy.

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

The Proving by Beverly Lewis is a beautiful Christian tale. A young Amish woman is to return home. Her mother just passed away recently and she alone has inherited the family bed and breakfast. However, there are conditions she must follow to keep it. After being away for five years, Mandy isn’t sure where she belongs. Being back home, is an emotional journey for her. Faith, love, friendship and new beginnings are featured on these pages. I was deeply engaged from the beginning. Theending was sweet. The plot’s pace was steady. Challenges are hard but here, I got to watch as the main character pursued hers. I enjoyed the hidden messages of wisdom. Beverly Lewis is indeed a great writer. Overall, I recommended The Proving to all. 

Review: Cutie Meets Mr. Lizard

Synopsis:

“Cutie Meets Mr. Lizard” is the first book of Cutie’s Big Adventures, a Cutie Book Series for children, written by Felicia Di John and illustrated by Terence Gaylor.
In this first book, we meet Cutie, a sweet, curious, adventurous chihuahua rescue dog who lives in a house in the desert. She is a little dog who thinks she is big. Her mom Ava Rose is six years old and loves Cutie very much. She would like to play with her all day, but she must go to school. Cutie is never happy when her mom leaves her for school because that means she will be home all alone. So today, Cutie decides to go outdoors by herself to play. She explores the desert around her, makes a new friend, and finds that some animals eat strange things. She is having so much fun that she almost forgets to get back home before her mom arrives. Luckily, she remembers, and Cutie makes it back just in time to greet her mom, Ava Rose. 

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Cutie Meets Mr. Lizard by Felicia Di John is a great children’s book. I loved the illustrations that went with the story. Fun, creative, and simple. The story itself was cute. Cutie is a chihuahua. She explores the world around her home. In this adventure she is looking for a different kind of food. But she soon realized that her puppy food is better than what she found. The story would have better if Cutie tried going for the food she had in mind…spaghetti. But instead she left home and found a lizard. Mr. Lizard eats live ants. Yuck! Both boys and girls could like this adventure. However, the children would have to be really young. The adventure was too simple for those in kindergarten and above. Overall, a fun read. 

Review: Professor Ladybug Teaches All About Me

Synopsis:

Welcome to the wonderful world of Professor Ladybug! This simple workbook is designed for children to explore and record facts about themselves, as well as their friends and family. 

These 80+ pages are also a great way to build self-esteem and confidence in any young child. Watch them get more confident through exercises that help them explore their favorite things as well as their own family relationships. 
The simple activities will provide hours of educational fun for your child and are perfect for home or school. Presented in an easy-to-use format, this workbook is designed primarily for early learners. Even the most reluctant learner will love exploring and learning with Professor Ladybug. Skill areas include: 

  • Self-Esteem
  • Reading Readiness
  • Memory Recall
  • Drawing Skills
  • Simple Sentences

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Professor Ladybug Teaches All About Me is an excellent workbook for young children. It creates a wide variety of activities that keep them busy. Engaging them to learn, think, write, create, and draw. I love it. The pages cover everything that the children will need to learn more about themselves, their families, pets, friends, and teachers. Color and trace activities inside as well. Creative with a great page layout. Certificates in the back to award to the children upon completing their learning tasks. I wish children’s workbooks were more like this one when I was little. Overall, I highly recommend this one to both teachers and parents alike. 

Review: The Summer House  

Synopsis:

When Flossy Merrill summons her children to the beloved family beach house to celebrate their father’s eightieth birthday, both cherished memories and long-kept secrets come to light in this charming and lyrical novel from the author of The Lake Season and Mystic Summer.
Flossy Merrill has managed to—somewhat begrudgingly—gather her three ungrateful grown children from their dysfunctional lives for a summer reunion at the family’s Rhode Island beach house. Clementine, her youngest child and a young mother of two small children, has caused Flossy the most worry after enduring a tragically life-altering year. But Samuel and his partner Evan are not far behind in their ability to alarm: their prospective adoption search has just taken a heart-wrenching turn. Only Paige, the eldest of the headstrong Merrill clan, is her usual self: arriving precisely on time with her well-adapted teens. Little does her family know that she, too, is facing personal struggles of her own.
No matter. With her family finally congregated under one seaside roof, Flossy is determined to steer her family back on course even as she prepares to reveal the fate of the summer house that everyone has thus far taken for granted: she’s selling it. The Merrill children are both shocked and outraged and each returns to memories of their childhoods at their once beloved summer house—the house where they have not only grown up, but from which they have grown away. With each lost in their respective heartaches, Clementine, Samuel, and Paige will be forced to reconsider what really matters before they all say goodbye to a house that not only defined their summers, but, ultimately, the ways in which they define themselves. 
Featuring McKinnon’s “sharp and evocative” (Kirkus Reviews) voice, this warm-hearted novel is perfect for fans of Elin Hilderbrand and Mary Alice Monroe.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

The Summer House by Hannah McKinnon is a superb summer read. A story about a family dealing with a lot of issues. The mother forces her kids back to the summer house. There she hopes to help them deal with their issues and maybe, find some peace. A worried mother over grown children. The mother herself has something to share with her children. She plans to sell their summer house. A place full of childhood memories for the children who are now, grown adults. The journey is rocky at first but smooths over as the pages are turned. Emotional, stunning, and heartfelt. 

Hannah McKinnon writes well. Her characters are believable. Each one adds to the plot. A different issue like the lost of a husband. Readers will easily relate to the them. I was able to understand and love the characters. The mother was the centerfold of this family. Strong, dependent, and clever. She loves her family. Caring, loving, and sweet. I couldn’t put this book down…The Summer House lured me from my seat and deep onto its pages. A deep entertaining read. One that pulled at my heart strings all the way. Overall, I recommend this novel to readers worldwide. Loss, love, and healing. 

Review: A Sister’s Place



Synopsis:

Sometimes the friend you’ve always needed is the sister you’ve always had.
Throughout the years, sisters Gracie and Juliette Bennett have let life’s changes pull them in opposite directions. But when their beloved grandmother Mimi passes away, they’re drawn back together in the most unexpected way. Set to inherit the family home, a charming Craftsman with an overgrown garden and lush fruit trees near the beach in Santa Barbara, the estranged sisters learn there’s a catch: the house can be theirs, but only if they agree to live in it for one year—together.
Suddenly Gracie, a pragmatic paralegal who’s always stayed close to home, and Juliette, an intrepid recent NYU grad in search of the next thrill, are living under one roof. Forced to reexamine their relationship, they find themselves confronting their pasts and bonding over love, heartbreak, and deeply held secrets. Soon they’ll discover whether a sister’s love is what they need to get them through their darkest hours—and if their grandmother’s clever plan can preserve more than just a piece of family history. It just might preserve the friendship of a lifetime…and reveal the sisters and women they were always meant to be.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

A Sister’s Place by Savannah Page is an interesting yet heart wrenching novel. Losing someone one loves dear is hard. Life does begin and end…and in this case it was time for a grandma to leave. Her family is brought together. Especially two sisters who were the best of friends when they were younger. Now, as young twenty-something’s they hardly speak or are there for each other. Their friendship hanging by a thin thread. However, with their grandma’s wish, both have to live together in the house for a year. Or else the family home will be sold. Neither wants to lose the family house. With no other choice they begin filling their late grandmother’s wish. 

Savannah Page has created a book that allows readers to re-examine life in a new way. Deeper, more emotional, and funny too. I loved following the two sisters. Their journey made me laugh and cry. Both are completely different. The younger one is taller and more of a wild card. The oldest is more calm and a ruler abiding punctual adult. Together, years and memories unfold as they learn to accept each other as sisters. Sisterhood as their grandma, Mimi, called it. It’s a special gift. After reading this novel, it makes me wish my baby sister was closer. As each day grows, I miss my own sister more. A Sister’s Place is realistic and heartfelt. I loved it. Overall, I recommend every woman and sister to read this book. 

Review: Love Bears All Things

 

Synopsis:

Could God be o­ffering Charlotte a second chance at true love?

Charlo­tte Dolinsky needs time to recover after breaking up with her boyfriend, Ryan. But when a surprise visitor shows up on her doorstep in Texas, she’s forced to put aside her own worries to help her Amish friends in Lancaster County. Soon she is entangled in a web of deception—and this time, she isn’t the only one keeping secrets.

Daniel Byler struggles each day in his Amish community to heal from his fiancée’s betrayal. When he discovers that a member of his family is in danger of being shunned, his pain turns to fear. His only way to help is by partnering with Charlo­tte, a woman he barely knows who has already deceived them all before.

Charlo­tte begins building a friendship with Daniel that she’ll need to lean on when more surprises surface from her past, and she once again finds herself torn between two worlds. Will Charlotte’s friends in the Amish community be able to show her the power of redemption and lead her home? And can she help young Jacob realize that God offers second chances at happiness when she isn’t even sure herself?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Love Bears All Things by Beth Wiseman is an Amish Secrets Novel. Beth Wiseman’s novels and short stories are amazing. Heartwarming and addictive. This novel was sweet and beautifully told.  I found myself instantly lost, within its plot. The story introduces several characters. The first is Charlotte Dolinsky. She had a breakup with her boyfriend and her mom is hard to handle at times. She has secrets that she kept from someone but secrets have a way of revealing themselves sooner than later. Then there’s Daniel Byler. He feels betrayed and hurt. God soon sends him another obstacle. A family member on a dark path who is close to losing all care about him. Jacob is young has to find his path soon. These three characters are all needing a second chance and a chance at redemption. Friendship, loyalty, trust and a blossoming love are all themes inside this stunning read. I loved following the characters. Their dilemmas and faith were inspiring. When one is in need of help, others come in quick. The strong sense of community was apparent inside of Love Bears All Things. Beth Wisemans has masterfully shown readers how love can conquer all things. There were times, I wasn’t sure what would happen next but Beth Wiseman kept me intrigued with every page. A great emotional journey that softens a heart fast and leads to more reading…that what Love Bears All Things did to me. I was hooked. Suspenseful and unpredictable, I highly recommend this new novel to all.

 

Review: Gullali of Panjshir Valley

 

Synopsis:

A POWERFUL TALE OF ADVENTURE, ROMANCE, AND ONE WOMAN’S FIGHT AGAINST GENDER BIAS IN THE NAME OF CULTURE AND RELIGION.

Panjshir Valley, eleven thousand feet above sea level north of Kabul–Afghanistan, is heaven on Earth. Gullali, an educated young Afghan woman, was raised by her liberal-minded family to believe women deserve the same rights as men, a belief that is vehemently condemned by Talibanised Afghanistan. With romance in her life, Gullali’s life is perfect until Afghanistan is invaded by the Soviet army on December 24, 1979, and her life changes overnight.

After ten years of occupation, the Soviets leave in defeat. Though a triumph, the tribes fight among themselves over women and pretty boys. Power turns to greed, and order in Afghanistan fades. Amid the turmoil, the Taliban gain control, over the country, and women are the first casualty in the name of Islam.

Rumors of a more tolerant Pakistan beckon Gullali and her husband, but tragedy strikes. Gullali comes to realize the Taliban is just as prevalent in Pakistan. Captive, she suffers both physically and mentally from gender bias and religious hypocrisy.

Fueled by the abuse, Gullali is determined to fight for women’s rights, education, and freedom from male abuse in the name of Muslim culture and religion. Using her story, she tries to create awareness among the women of Pakistan but faces death threats from the clerics. She fights back. What follows is a roller coaster ride of fights for women’s liberation and adventure, with passionate romance in between.

Rating: 5 stars
Review:
Gullali of Panjshir Valley by Zia Rehman is an interesting read. It brings to light the struggles of the people of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Women especially are brought into a chaos all because of the of Islam religion and men’s ideas of women. Women are treated as unequal. No education, as well as no rights, are given. This novel brings to life the struggles that women faced under the Islamic men’s rule. The danger was something that lied ahead for women as men didn’t take to them going to school lightly. The men wanted to be in charge. There seemed to be historical events planted within this fiction tale. Like the many different invaders to these countries and what happened each time. Every take over had an influence on the countries that these women lived within…I found myself curious as I read every page. The leading female character’s life went from good to horrifying fast. Her country was one that she wanted to leave. But the next one was just as bad as her own. Love, fate, and determination helped Gullali fight for survival. Her story is a journey many don’t want to miss.  War, terror, and abuse…and one one woman’s courage are themes that will entice readers to this brilliant piece. Overall, I recommend Gullali of Panjshir Valley to readers everywhere.

Review: The Life She Wants

 

Synopsis:

In the aftermath of her financier husband’s suicide, Emma Shay Compton’s dream life is shattered. Richard Compton stole his clients’ life savings to fund a lavish life in New York City and, although she was never involved in the business, Emma bears the burden of her husband’s crimes. She is left with nothing.

Only one friend stands by her, a friend she’s known since high school, who encourages her to come home to Sonoma County. But starting over isn’t easy, and Sonoma is full of unhappy memories, too. And people she’d rather not face, especially Riley Kerrigan.

Riley and Emma were like sisters—until Riley betrayed Emma, ending their friendship. Emma left town, planning to never look back. Now, trying to stand on her own two feet, Emma can’t escape her husband’s reputation and is forced to turn to the last person she thought she’d ever ask for help—her former best friend. It’s an uneasy reunion as both women face the mistakes they’ve made over the years. Only if they find a way to forgive each other—and themselves—can each of them find the life she wants.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

The Life She Wants by Robyn Carr is another amazing read by this talented writer. A novel that shows how one’s easy life can easily be taken from them. One can work hard and be decent and still have trouble…like Emma Shay Compton. Marriage and her lifestyle were  taken away in one great swoop. Fate lands her back home. A place with bad memories. But looking at her options she has nowhere else to go. Maybe she can start new and gain her life back. Easier said than done. Robyn Carr brilliantly creates novels that hook and captivate readers from the beginning to end. Her words are inspiring and heartwarming. Friendship, as well as new relationships, are great themes within this riveting new title. Back home Emma will have to be patient in getting the life she wants.

The Life She Wants is packed with emotions and a raw intensity that pulls me in deeply. I love Robyn Carr’s writing. She never disappoints. The rollercoaster ride that readers will be going on within this new tale is one that shows us no matter what life brings we can overcome anything. Friends with a falling out so long ago are now brought back into each other’s lives. Only time will tell if they can repair their friendship and make it solid once again. The drama of Emma’s husband’s investigation still comes chasing after her…making her life miserable. She can’t wait until it’s over if it ever ends. The police have been tapping into her phone and still bother her with endless questions. Her frustration and despair felt so real. I felt like I was inside Emma’s shoes rather than sitting in a chair reading about what she felt. Not only does Emma have nothing, battling an ongoing investigation due to her dead husband but also has feelings for a man that she tries not to get to attached to...The Life She Wants has everything plus more then what every reader wants or expected to find. I loved following the characters especially Riley and Emma. Their friendship tugged at my heart. Overall, I highly recommend this story to readers everywhere.

 

Review: Voices in the Wind

 

Synopsis: 

The story is set in western Nebraska in the American Midwest. A young attorney accepts a job at her imperious father’s law firm, which forces her to confront tragedies old and new, and leads her into a harrowing fight for survival and the transformation that brings forgiveness and a new perspective.

Along the way, the heroine, Megan, must deal with a crooked attorney, a tornado, lots of root beer, a blond stud, voices in the wind, heartbreak, a lunatic with a shotgun, delicious pastries, isolation, and lies.

This rugged High Plains land of Megan’s hometown is the desolate, windblown, harsh land of the pioneer, American Indian, and cowboy. Even in adulthood, it stirs a strange yearning in Megan, as she deals with the pressures of a law firm and a new love, as well as her attempts to unravel the haunting mystery surrounding her mother. Meanwhile, a disturbed neighbor seeks vengeance against Megan and her friend, driving them into the darkness of the rough land in a test of her wits, fortitude, and resourcefulness. Ultimately, her greatest challenge is to forgive.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Judy Bruce brings readers a novel that shows how a character who feels completely flawed overcomes that difficult times life dishes her. Tragedies from the past come alive once more and new ones follow after it. A young woman from a rural town moves back home to work at her father’s law firm. Megan is a character that many will be wowed by…her weaknesses becomes her strengths and with a little determination she might she pull off everything that’s settled onto her shoulders. Family issues, a new job, and a new love, as well as secrets that may drive Megan down or pull her back up like a free bird, will definitely lure readers to this stunning masterpiece. Voices in the Wind will intrigue readers everywhere. I loved Judy Bruce’s way of showing us what happened and how it happened. The story drags readers in from the beginning and won’t let go until the read it all. This is the first novel in the Wind Series by Judy Bruce and I loved it. I can’t wait to read what happens next inside of her second novel, Alone in the Wind.

Review: Off the Hook

 

Synopsis:

Welcome to The Buoys, a West Coast haven where love comes in with the tide. Perfect for readers of Jill Shalvis and Susan Mallery, the Fishing for Trouble series features three unforgettable brothers—each of whom is a great catch.

Major league pitcher Liam O’Donnell knows his best days are probably behind him, but that doesn’t mean he’s ready to retire and become a fishing guide. Still, after all the time he’s spent chasing his dreams, he owes it to his brothers to pull his weight around the lodge. The Buoys is their father’s legacy, and they can’t let some developer take it from them. The one snag Liam isn’t counting on is a blast from the past: his ex-wife.

The moment Kate Hadley steps out of the seaplane, she knows this assignment is going to be trickier than she thought. She has to persuade the owners to sell—and one of them is Liam O’Donnell. Ten years ago, she made the biggest mistake of her life when she married Liam during a fling in Vegas. Now he’s her only lifeline in the middle of nowhere. Kate’s trying to keep things cool, but Liam just reminds her of the scorching few nights they spent together—and tempts her to make new memories that are just as steamy as the old.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Off the Hook by Laura Drewry is one hot sexy read that will leave readers falling in love.Three amazing men, a family legacy, and trouble in the form of an ex. One of the brothers will be surprised and everything from the past will hit him harder than he thinks. A once upon a time romance that seems to not have died out at all…Laura Drewry sure knows how to lure readers in deep. The plot is addictive and moves by fast. The characters are well-developed and leave you following them along as the story unfolds.

Off the Hook is an extraordinary journey that readers won’t be forgetting anytime soon. Laura Drewry’s novel captivates readers from the beginning and holds onto them throughout the pages. Every page builds up, with an intense emotion that will soon break between two interesting individuals. The family roots and the way they all work hard together to pull up…is amazing. I love family relationships that were portrayed within this exciting read. The romance is enticing…and so is the brotherly love. Overall, I highly recommend this beautifully written story to readers everywhere.

Review: Last First Kiss

 

Synopsis:

A kiss is just the beginning…

Pinterest Perfect. Or so Annie Carson’s life appears on her popular blog. Reality is … messier. Especially when it lands her back in one-cow town Brightwater, California, and back in the path of the gorgeous six-foot-four reason she left. Sawyer Kane may fill out those Wranglers, but she won’t be distracted from her task. Annie just needs the summer to spruce up and sell her family’s farm so she and her young son can start a new life in the big city. Simple, easy, perfect.

Sawyer has always regretted letting the first girl he loved slip away. He won’t make the same mistake twice, but can he convince beautiful, wary Annie to trust her heart again when she’s been given every reason not to? And as a single kiss turns to so much more, can Annie give up her idea of perfect for a forever that’s blissfully real?

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

Last First Kiss by Lia Riley is hot, sugar sweet and super messy. Readers will fall in love with the characters instantly. The plot itself wraps its way onto readers hearts and never let’s go.

Lia Riley’s hot steamy romance is one that should be read over and over again. It’s hard not to love everything about this brilliantly well-written story. Emotional attachments are messy especially when it’s the reason one woman left her hometown and never came back until now… Last First Kiss is enticing…the sparks are hotter than coals on a fiery grill. One man let his only love slip away…but now that she’s back, he’s going to work on keeping her forever. But can he convince her to stay? Readers will be laughing throughout this entertaining read and never put it down. Once you read Lia Riley’s latest romance, you can’t stop until you have read every last page. Overall, I highly recommend this sexy read to readers everywhere.

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