Review: Arms of Mercy by Ruth Reid

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

He lost her once to a rash decision.

He will not lose her again.

On the eve of a new year, Catherine Glick is expecting her bu of five years to propose. Instead, the unexpected arrival of an old boyfriend, Elijah, sends her life spiraling out of control. When a rash decision damages her current relationship, Catherine leaves for Florida to work in her cousin’s bakery—anything to flee the source of her shame.

Elijah Graber knows he hurt Catherine when he left their Amish district six years ago. He’s determined to explain his actions, even if it means following her to Florida. Perhaps their two-day bus trip together will provide enough time for him to make his case and win her back.

Just when Elijah is starting to tear down the walls Catherine has built, their bus skids on an icy road—and amid the mayhem and tragedy that follow, Catherine disappears. Elijah’s friends urge him to prepare for the worst, but Elijah holds on to his hope in God and refuses to give up his search for Catherine. With supernatural nudging from the most unexpected places, Elijah sets out to find the love he once lost—no matter the cost.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Arms of Mercy by Ruth Reid is an emotional journey. It tugged at my heart strings all the way. Two young Amish people fell in love but things didn’t go as planned. Hurt and embarrassed, one of them runs away from their current life. Only this time, the other one isn’t going to give up…

Catherine loved Elijah until he hurt her emotionally. She has then moved on with her life. Currently romantically involved with another Amish man, Catherine has been waiting for love. What she doesn’t realize is that her heart was still with Elijah. Then, embarrassed by what happens to her next, she flees. Unexpectedly, Elijah meets her and from there the story grows complicated, heartbreaking, and sweet.

Elijah broke his love’s heart. Hoping to make mends…he finds that his love never ended for her. Just being with Catherine makes him happy. Things are going well, until tragedy strikes them both. Loss, grief, and forgiveness are major themes of this novel. I was so engaged in both characters’ lives I felt like I was there with them. They made me hope and cheer for them both. The ending was wonderful. I wasn’t disappointed with this read. Overall, I highly recommend it to all Christian readers.

Review: Honeysuckle Dreams by Denise Hunter

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

After Brady Collins’ ex-wife dies, he receives devastating news—his nine-month-old son Sam isn’t his son at all. And Sam’s wealthy maternal grandparents want custody of the child. Brady knows he’s in for the fight of his life. But regardless of what any blood test says, Sam is his son, and Brady will go to any lengths to keep him.

Brady’s attorney tips him off that one major life change would virtually assure him of winning guardianship of baby Sam at the final hearing: an impending marriage. And his friend Hope is willing to step in as the loving and devoted fiance.

Local radio celebrity Hope Daniels has been driven by a solitary goal her entire life, and after a happy accident she’s finally offered her dream job. But if the truth comes out about her arrangement with Brady, she may miss the chance of a lifetime and stand in the way of a dear friend’s dreams.

As Brady and Hope make sacrifices to help each other in their times of need, they risk uncovering a truth neither of them expects to find.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Honeysuckle Dreams by Denise Hunter is a sweet tale full of sacrifices and hope. Two friends are battling for things they want in life. However, when the push comes to shove they put aside their dreams for a better future than they hoped for…

Brady is a decent man and going to be a wonderful father. His trouble broke my heart. I felt sympathy for him right away. It was easy to connect with Brady due to his circumstances. Losing a loved one and then finding out that your newborn isn’t yours to begin with…is a whole new level of difficulty that no one wants to have. Yet Brady is dealing with them all. Then, the pressure from his wife’s family is giving him even more trouble. But hope and promises lie with his friend, Hope.

Hope is a determined woman willing to get what she wants. Yet something keeps pulling her towards Brady and his newborn that she cannot deny. A new future with new possibilities is hard to let go of when the hear is being torn.

Honeysuckle Dreams is exactly as it sounds. Hope and dreams colliding causing for an adventure of a lifetime. Overall, I was entertained from beginning to end. I would recommend it to readers everywhere.

Review: Becoming the Talbot Sisters by Rachel Linden

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Twin sisters Waverly and Charlie Talbot have drifted far apart as they pursue opposite dreams of stardom and service to the poor. On an astonishing journey across Central Europe, they must come together to face their fears, find their courage and fight for what they love.

Celebrity chef Waverly Ross has built a successful career with her home-entertaining show Simply Perfect. Yet she and her husband, Andrew, have never been able to realize the true desire of Waverly’s heart: to become a mother. Meanwhile Waverly’s twin sister, Charlie Talbot, buries her bitter disappointment and shattered idealism beneath a life spent serving others as an international aid worked in Budapest, Hungary.

When the beloved aunt who raised them passes away, Waverly and Charlie come together in their grief after living years on separate continents. Struck by a fierce desire to bridge the distance between them, Charlie offers Waverly and her husband the selfless gift of surrogacy.

But soon the sisters find they are each in danger of losing their jobs, seemingly putting their dreams on hold once again. When Waverly shows up unannounced in Budapest with a plan to rescue Simply Perfect, the sisters embark on an adventure across Central Europe that could save them both from occupational hazards. Though the twins haven’t had to rely on each other since childhood, an unforeseen dangerous turn in their journey across Europe forces them to stand together to save their careers, the baby, and each other.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

Becoming the Talbot Sisters by Rachel Linden is an awe inspiring tale of the bond between two sisters. Being an older sister, I can relate to these sisters. My baby sister has moved away to pursue her dreams, and I felt like we drifted apart. But we still love each other and are there when we need each other. The same can be shown in this book with the Talbot sisters. Their aunt passes away and that starts their reunion in becoming closer. From there their journeys become messy, complicated, and scary. But they now, have each other in their lives again and from there they learn and help each other. I loved the protrayal of the sister bonding moments, the emotional rollercoaster each one took, and the sacrifices they made. It was a steady piece of fiction. The plot was heartfelt and realistic. Overall, I recommend it to readers.

Review: The Weaver’s Daughter by Sarah E. Ladd

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Kate’s loyalties bind her to the past. Henry’s loyalties compel him to strive for a better future.

In a landscape torn between tradition and vision, can two souls find the strength to overcome their preconceptions?

Loyalty has been at the heart of the Dearborne family for as long as Kate can remember, but a war is brewing in their small village, one that has the power to rip families asunder—including her own. As misguided actions are brought to light, she learns how deep her father’s pride and bitterness run, and she begins to wonder if her loyalty is well-placed.

Henry Stockton, heir to the Stockton fortune, returns home from three years at war hoping to find a refuge from his haunting memories. Determined to bury the past, he embraces his grandfather’s goals to modernize his family’s wool mill, regardless of the grumblings from the local weavers. When tragedy strikes shortly after his arrival, Henry must sort out the truth from suspicion if he is to protect his family’s livelihood and legacy.

Henry has been warned about the Dearborne family. Kate, too, has been advised to stay far away from the Stocktons, but chance meetings continue to bring her to Henry’s side, blurring the jagged lines between loyalty, justice, and truth. Kate ultimately finds herself with the powerful decision that will forever affect her village’s future. Born on opposite sides of the conflict, Henry and Kate must come together to find a way to create peace for their families, and their village, and their souls—even if it means risking their hearts in the process.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Weaver’s Daughter by Sarah E. Ladd is a heartfelt journey full of surprises. I was entertained from the beginning. The main characters have a heavy weight on their shoulders. Both of  their families and the town are hanging by a thread. A wrong decision could make everything much worse. Two families are fighting among each other. The past held bad memories. Kate is bound to her father but things have changed. She will have to make choice between her father and the man that holds her heart. Henry is also bound by duty. He and Kate kept meeting and fate has taken over their lives. Good things are on the horizon but loss and grief may still exist. Some things may never change…

Sarah E. Ladd has written a fun historical fiction piece. I was charmed and lured by both Kate and Henry. The younger generation trying to to hold together what their families have created is a daunting task. I felt as though I had slipped back in time. Loyalty, hope, and love are some of the major themes explored here. It was well-written. Overall, I recommend this novel to all.

 

 

Review: The Man He Never Was

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

“Rubart will leave readers inspired . . .” –Publishers Weekly STARRED review for The Long Journey to Jake Palmer

What if You Woke up One Morning and the Darkest Parts of Yourself Were Gone?

Toren Daniels vanished eight months back, and his wife and kids have moved on–with more than a little relief. Toren was a good man but carried a raging temper that often exploded without warning. So when he shows up on their doorstep out of the blue, they’re shocked to see him alive. But more shocked to see he’s changed. Radically.

His anger is gone. He’s oddly patient. Kind. Fun. The man he always wanted to be. Toren has no clue where he’s been but knows he’s been utterly transformed. He focuses on three things: Finding out where he’s been. Finding out how it happened. And winning back his family.

But then shards of his old self start to rise from deep inside–like the man kicked out of the NFL for his fury–and Toren must face the supreme battle of his life.

In this fresh take on the classic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, James L. Rubart explores the war between the good and evil within each of us–and one man’s only chance to overcome the greatest divide of the soul.

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

The Man He Never Was by James L. Rubart is an interesting twist to the classic, Dr. Jekyll andMr. Hyde. Except in this case, the bad part of the main protagonist disappears completely. Like it was never there. Tore Daniels has had an awful temper. He has a wonderful family but sometimes his temper could be really bad…Toren goes missing. His family believes he’s dead until he suddenly pops up at the doorstep of their house. That’s where it gets really weird. Where was he, how did he go missing, and what happened to him while he was gone? These questions kept playing over and over again. His wife tries to push his buttons to see his temper fly but somehow Toren seems to hold it in way better than he ever did. His wife wonders who is this man…I found that a bit funny. The mystery is solved and it was a sweet ending. I loved these characters. There is a lot of inspirational messages on marriage, love, hope, and faith included in this book. Overall, I enjoyed it and recommend it to all.

Review: The Lost Castle

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Launching a brand-new series, Kristy Cambron explores the collision of past and present as she discovers the ruins of a French castle, long lost to history.

A thirteenth century castle, Chateau de Doux Reves, has been forgotten for generations, left to ruin in a storybook forest nestled deep in France’s picturesque Loire Valley. It survived a sacking in the French Revolution, was brought back to life and fashioned into a storybook chateau in the Gilded Age, and was eventually felled and deserted after a disastrous fire in the 1930s.

As Ellie Carver sits by her grandmother’s bedside, she hears stories of a castle . . . of lost love and a hidden chapel that played host to a secret fight in the World War II French resistance. But her grandmother is quickly slipping into the locked-down world of Alzheimer’s, and Ellie must act fast if she wants to uncover the truth of her family’s history.

Sparked by the discovery of a long forgotten family heirloom, Ellie embarks on a journey to French wine country to uncover the mystery surrounding The Sleeping Beauty–the castle so named for Charles Perrault’s beloved fairy tale–and unearth its secrets before they’re finally silenced by time.

Set in three different time periods–the French Revolution, World War II, and present day–The Lost Castle is a story of loves won and lost, of battles waged, and an enchanted castle that inspired the epic fairy tales time left behind.

Rating: 4-stars

Review:

The Lost Castle by Kristy Cambron is an interesting historical journey. A young woman is wanting to learn everything she can about her family history. Her grandmother provides the clues but is slipping away fast into Alzheimer’s. The clock is ticking fast, and Ellie Carver must find the answers. Soon, I was following her as she traveled to a castle that has holds so many secrets. Many generations of women, and their historical time periods were brought to life in this engaging tale. Captivating and intriguing, I was hooked. The Lost Castle peaked my interest. What were the women’s lives like…and how it all ties in with the present, kept me reading. Ellie is a good character. Her personality makes her easy to like. Overall, I enjoyed traveling back in time with The Lost Castle. I recommend it to all.

Review: A Place at Our Table

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Kayla Dienner has suffered her fair share of heartache, which is why she vows to protect her heart at all costs . . . until she meets Jamie Riehl.

Along with his volunteer work at the local fire department, running his Amish farm keeps Jamie Riehl busy. He barely has time to eat at the family table, never mind find someone to date. But when he meets Kayla Dienner, he is smitten.

Kayla tries hard to deny her attraction to Jamie. After all, she’s spent the last year discouraging her younger brother, Nathan, from becoming a firefighter. The death of their older brother in a fire a year ago is fresh in her mind—she can’t bear the idea of putting her heart on the line every time the sirens blare.

Then tragedy strikes, and Jamie wants to extinguish any flame between him and Kayla. Can Kayla set aside her own fears to save the love she was determined to deny?

The first book in the Amish Homestead series, A Place at Our Table invites us to a quiet community in Lancaster County where love burns brightly no matter the cost.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

A Place at Our Table by Amy Clipston is another satisfying read. Amy Clipston has done it again. Creating a tale that ignites heartwarming feelings and a thirst for more. Sweet and engaging from the beginning to end. I could not stop reading it. I have fallen in love with the Amish genre thanks to this writer. Her words are clean yet enticing. The characters are believable. And the plot rides smoothly.

A young woman lost a brother due to fire. Her younger sibling wants to be a fireman too. She tries with all of her heart to dissuade him of it. Then, there is a particular man who sparks her interest. Yet she is determined to keep away from him. Protecting her heart. Jamie is a firefighter. However, tragedy strikes and Kayla will have her heart put to the test.

Overall, I loved it. A Place at Our Table is tender, moving, and enjoyable. Lessons to be learned hidden inside…I highly recommend it to readers everywhere.

Review: A Time to Stand

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

In a small Georgia town where racial tensions run high and lives are at stake, can one lawyer stand up for justice against the tide of prejudice on every side?

Adisa Johnson, a young African-American attorney, is living her dream of practicing law with a prestigious firm in downtown Atlanta. Then a split-second mistake changes the course of her career.

Left with no other options, Adisa returns to her hometown where a few days earlier a white police officer shot an unarmed black teen who is now lying comatose in the hospital.

Adisa is itching to jump into the fight as a special prosecutor, but feels pulled to do what she considers unthinkable—defend the officer.

As the court case unfolds, everyone in the small community must confront their own prejudices. Caught in the middle, Adisa also tries to chart her way along a path complicated by her budding relationship with a charismatic young preacher who leads the local movement demanding the police officer answer for his crime.

This highly relevant and gripping novel challenges us to ask what it means to forgive while seeking justice and to pursue reconciliation while loving others as ourselves.

 

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

A Time to Stand by Robert Whitlow is an interesting yet significant piece of literature. Here, readers explore the toughest of racial tensions by white versus black. A white officer shoots an unarmed black teen. The lawyer in this case is Adisa Johnson. An African American attorney in a man’s world. Tensions rise with each adding page. Anger, frustration, fear, and justice ring out everywhere. Then there’s  the romantic entanglements that make this story even more complex.  Writer Robert Whitlow adds to the suspense by creating several twists and turns that readers won’t expect. So many factors play a part of this plot. It’s easy to judge than to listen. Innocent people are under fire due to the situation presented inside…pressure builds and the drama as well. I was thoroughly impressed with the talent demonstrated by this writer. He created a believable, exciting, and intriguing tale. Hooking me in with every word. The main characters were well-developed. I look forward to reading more by Robert Whitlow in the future. Overall, I highly recommend A Time to Stand.

Review: The Space Between Words

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

 

 

“There were seconds, when I woke, when the world felt unshrouded. Then memory returned.”

 

When Jessica regains consciousness in a French hospital on the day after the Paris attacks, all she can think of is fleeing the site of the horror she survived. But Patrick, the steadfast friend who hasn’t left her side, urges her to reconsider her decision. Worn down by his insistence, she reluctantly agrees to follow through with the trip they’d planned before the tragedy.

 

“The pages found you,” Patrick whispered.

 

“Now you need to figure out what they’re trying to say.”

 

During a stop at a country flea market, Jessica finds a faded document concealed in an antique. As new friends help her to translate the archaic French, they uncover the story of Adeline Baillard, a young woman who lived centuries before—her faith condemned, her life endangered, her community decimated by the Huguenot persecution.

 

“I write for our descendants, for those who will not understand the cost of our survival.”

 

Determined to learn the Baillard family’s fate, Jessica retraces their flight from France to England, spurred on by a need she doesn’t understand.

 

Could this stranger who lived three hundred years before hold the key to Jessica’s survival?

 

Rating: 4-stars

 

Review:

The Space Between Words by Michele Phoenix is a stunning read. The themes explored are loss, grief, and fear. As the characters go through their journey, it was hard not to relate to them. I felt as though I were in their shoes instead of my chair at home. Readers, like myself, got a taste of reality. A young woman lies through a terrifying crisis. But it leaves her with fear. The type of fear the writer wanted to portray and actually portrayed differed. The protagonist didn’t quite meet with what the writer intended. Jessica with her type of fear should have wanted her parents near her. Yet she doesn’t. It felt strange. I haven’t come across too many protagonists that keep away from their family’s comfort during a tragic event. Knowing what happened to Jessica, it just felt like she and her family weren’t connected. The parents should have come to their daughter’s aid even if she said no. But they didn’t. The romance bit of romance  was good. I felt that there was some closure for the characters. Peaceful, engaging, and well-written. The intrigue of the historical past from papers found was what really caught my full attention to this book. It was exciting. Overall, The Space Between Words by Michele Phoenix was an entertaining read. I recommend it to readers everywhere.

Review: The Promise of a Letter







Synopsis:

A letter brings him back to his Amish family. It will take someone truly extraordinary to make him stay. 

Roman is on the verge of leaving the Amish ways. Feeling confined by the strict rules, he longs to do something more with his life. But when things don’t go as planned, Roman’s prospects outside of the community dwindle. Upon learning that his beloved grandmother has died and left a letter urging him to reconcile with his brother in Birch Creek, Roman decides to return home. But he doesn’t plan to stay for long.

Leanna Chupp has always made her own way in her small community of Birch Creek. Though some may call her unconventional–strange, even–Leanna is happy. Her unique outlook on life has meant she’s never had many suitors pursuing courtship, which Leanna doesn’t mind. She is content being single.

But when Roman and Leanna find themselves working together again, everything changes. Though neither fit squarely within the strictures of the Amish faith, their differences could be the very thing to help them form a deeper connection to their community and to each other. The question remains: will this strengthening bond be enough to make Roman stay for good? 

Rating: 5-stars

Review

The Promise of a Letter by Kathleen Fuller is an exciting adventure. A book with meaning and purpose. Two protagonists feel trapped, lost, and hurt. But with some time, hope, and faith they will be able to heal and move forward with happiness. The title is exactly what the story is about and shows that even the things we want are not what we may need. 

Kathleen Fuller is a writer with a magical wand. I love traveling deep into her books.  The characters are hard to ignore. Their life issues sucked me into their dilemmas and had me rooting for them. The book also contained a great emotional journey. I felt each characters loss, hope, faith, worry, anger, and fear. It was exciting to watch them grow. 

Leanna is a young Amish woman who is nothing like the others in her community. She hated school except for a few subjects like math. Her ability to fix things is amazing. Mechanical knowledge is for men. And here, I got to watch her fulfill that role. Leanna struggled with what others said about her working as a mechanic. But still, she never gave up…and it was thanks to one man who gave her that break. Only…soon, a gossip breaks out, bringing forth doubt and fear. This causes Leanna to lose her job. I felt sorry for her. It was funny to watch her fulfill more duties suited for her gender….like canning tomatoes. Leanna is terrible at the traditional women duties. But as a mechanic, friend, daughter, and as a sister, Leanna does well. 

Roman is a young Amish man. Not wanting to marry just like Leanna. He too, is interested in mechanics and engineering. In fact, he was pursuing a degree in it. But then, tragedy strikes. Causing Roman to travel home once more. He’s not happy about it. The way he left the last time, will cause for hardship between him and his older brother, Daniel. Daniel is all he has left. But Daniel doesn’t want him home nor helping him. However, Daniel is foolish and gets injured. This causes him to feel worse. With his injuries, Roman automatically takes up the challenge to help his brother. A mechanic shop should be easy…only Roman knows he needs help. Leanna

Daniel is the older brother of Roman. He owns his own memchanic shop. Before it was just him and Roman. Until he got married…then, things changed. Roman left never saying goodbye. This hardened Daniel’s heart and made him angry. Struggling with things, Daniel is to stubborn to ask for help. His wife is pregnant and he’s afraid she loose the baby…then, there’s the nasty rumor that has him and his wife upset. He lets go of his only employee. His best employee, Leanna. 

The Promise of a Letter is an outstanding read. Kathleen Fuller knows how to nab her readers’ attention immediately. Every page was full of action, suspense, tension, and drama. I loved it. A good clean Christian novel with a bit of romance. Overall, I highly recommend this to all. 

Review: To Wager Her Heart

Synopsis:

With fates bound by a shared tragedy, a reformed gambler from the Colorado Territory and a Southern Belle bent on breaking free from society’s expectations must work together to achieve their dreams—provided that the truth doesn’t tear them apart first. 
Sylas Rutledge, the new owner of the Northeast Line Railroad, invests everything he has into this venture, partly for the sake of the challenge. But mostly to clear his father’s name. One man holds the key to Sy’s success—General William Giles Harding of Nashville’s Belle Meade Plantation. But Harding is champagne and thoroughbreds, and Sy Rutledge is beer and bullocks. Sy needs someone to help him maneuver his way through Nashville’s society, and when he meets Alexandra Jamison, he quickly decides he’s found his tutor. Only, he soon discovers that the very train accident his father is blamed for causing is what killed Alexandra Jamison’s fiancee—and what has broken her heart. 
Spurning an arranged marriage by her father, Alexandra instead pursues her passion for teaching at Fisk University, the first freedmen’s university in the United States. But family—and Nashville society—do not approve, and she soon finds herself cast out from both. Through connections with the Harding family, Alexandra and Sy become unlikely allies. And despite her first impressions, Alexandra gradually finds herself coming to respect, and even care for this man. But how can she, when her heart is still spoken for? And when Sy’s roguish qualities and adventuresome spirit smack more of recklessness than responsibility and honor? 
Sylas Rutledge will risk everything to win over the woman he loves. What he doesn’t count on is having to wager her heart to do it. 
Set against the real history of Nashville’s Belle Meade Plantation and the original Fisk University Jubilee Singers ensemble, To Wager Her Heart is a stirring love story about seeking justice and restoring honor at a time in history when both were tenuous and hard-won. 

Rating: 4.5-stars 

Review:

To Wager Her Heart by Tamera Alexander is a brilliant historical romance. Full of emotions. Both protagonists find themselves in  a world of hurt that binds them together. Each one seeking something with the help of the other. Tamera Alexander brought me back into the era of railroads and their danger. High clout families, politics, and the risks of falling in love. The stakes are high and the scenes are engaging. Themes of loss, honor, and hope are found here. I was intrigued with both the southern belle determined to make her own way and the troubled man taking on a huge task. Heartfelt, entertaining, and well-developed. Alexandra Jamison is a strong female character. She worked hard and it paid off…the feeling of accomplishment back then in her time period was the best part of the book. To Wager Her Heart has won my heart over many times. I highly recommend it to readers worldwide. 

Review: Unraveling 






Synopsis:

What happens when happily ever after starts to unravel?

Eliyana Ember doesn’t believe in true love. Not anymore. After defeating her grandfather and saving the Second Reflection, El only trusts what’s right in front of her. The tangible. The real. Not some unexplained Kiss of Infinity she once shared with the ghost of a boy she’s trying to forget. She has more important things to worry about–like becoming queen of the Second Reflection, a role she is so not prepared to fill.

Now that the Verity is intertwined with her soul and Joshua’s finally by her side, El is ready to learn more about her mysterious birth land, the land she now rules. So why does she feel like something–or someone–is missing?

When the thresholds begin to drain and the Callings, those powerful magical gifts, begin to fail, El wonders if her link to Ky Rhyen may have something to do with it. For light and darkness cannot coexist. She needs answers before the Callings disappear altogether. Can El find a way to sever her connection to Ky and save the Reflections–and keep herself from falling for him in the process?

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Unraveling by Sara Ella is an unforgettable fantasy. The second book in the trilogy set. I was hooked. A magical place full of action, suspense, and intrigue. It was an epic emotional journey. One that swept me off my seat and pulled me directly into its world. The main character El is quite interesting. Determined, brave, and hopeful. Her connection to Ky, a ghost is lost in a way. But still lingers. Only if El can remember…him. The story was heartfelt, engaging, and romantic. Fast-paced. The danger, mystery, and characters have pulled me in closer to the world. I can’t wait to read the next book. Sara Ella writes well. I got lost within her pages. Felt the rush of excitement, fear, and loss. This is one book that I recommend not only to teens, but also to adults. It was addictive. Superb. Unraveling is a masterpiece readers must read. 

Review: Sweetbriar Cottage






Synopsis:
When Noah and Josephine Mitchell discover their divorce was never actually finalized, their lives are turned upside down.
Following his divorce, Noah gave up his dream job, settling at a remote horse ranch in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Georgia, putting much-needed distance between himself and the former love of his life. But then Noah gets a letter from the IRS claiming he and Josephine are still married. When he confronts Josephine for the first time in months, they discover that she missed the final step in filing the paperwork and they are, in fact, still married.
Josephine is no happier about the news than Noah. Maybe the failed marriage—and okay, the botched divorce—was her fault, but her heart was shattered right alongside his, more than he would ever believe. The sooner they put this marriage behind them, the better for both of their sakes.
But when Josephine delivers the final paperwork to his ranch, the two become stranded in his cottage during the worst spring snowstorm in a decade. Being trapped with Josephine is a test of Noah’s endurance. He wrestles with resentment and an unmistakable pull to his wife—still beautiful, still brave, and still more intriguing than any woman he’s ever known.
As they find themselves confronted with each other and their shared past, old wounds surface and tempers flare. But when they are forced out into the storm, they must rely on each other in a way they never have before. Josephine finally opens up about her tragic past, and Noah realizes she’s never been loved unconditionally by anyone—including him. Will Noah accept the challenge to pursue Josephine’s heart? And can she finally find the courage to trust Noah?

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

Sweetbriar Cottage by Denise Hunter is a beautifully written novel. Inside, I met a couple that resemble today’s couples everywhere. Divorce. It’s a messy and complicated monster that takes over the lives of couples. Here, I got to watch two people once happily married wanting a divorce. However, the wife forgets to sign it in time…and it leaves them as a married couple. The emotional journey was epic. I loved every moment. Clean, engaging, and sweet. Josephine and Noah will have a tough time of roughing their situation and until they fix it…or maybe not. Life is unpredictable and even more so for these two. Overall, I recommend this Christian novel to readers everywhere. 

Review: An Amish Summer



Synopsis:

A Reunion in Pinecraft by Shelley Shepard Gray



When sisters Sharon and Sherilyn Kramer attend a wedding in Shipshewana, one of them returns with a new penpal while the other returns to her job at the bakery. After sending weekly letters back and forth, Sherry and Graham Holland arrange a reunion in Pinecraft. Upon Graham s arrival, however, he realizes he s been writing to the wrong sister. He decides to use the reunion as a way to get to know both sisters, but can he sort through the confusion in time to turn the worst vacation ever into something truly wonderful?

Summer Storm by Amy Clipston



Arianna is counting down the days until her wedding to Jesse. They have been friends longer than Arianna can remember, and that friendship turned into love over the past couple of years. But when Arianna s brother Isaac, who happens to be Jesse s best friend, gets them both into trouble, Arianna s father puts an end to her engagement to Jesse. Some summer storms pass quickly, but Arianna is afraid the damage from this one may be too much to repair.

Lakeside Love by Kathleen Fuller



Esther has always lived in the shadow of her beautiful younger sister Sarah. Even the boy she has known and loved her entire life, Judah, only has eyes for Sarah. But when a handsome young Englischer comes to live with the family for a summer, everything begins to change.

One Sweet Kiss by Kelly Irvin



Everybody in little Bee County, Texas, can see the obvious: Jacob King and Martha Byler are meant to be together. Everyone, that is, but Martha. Ever since her mother died when Martha was a young girl, she has taken over the role of caregiver to her large family. And reckless Jacob, who has had a little too much fun on his rumspringa, only seems to add to the list of people to manage. But one summer changes everything, and these two may just find a way to meet in the middle and share one sweet kiss.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

An Amish Summer is a collection of novellas from four of my favorite Christian writers. These writers are beyond talented. When I read each novella, I felt like I was only reading five pages…the plot flew by that fast. I was deeply engaged. Entertaining from the beginning to end. The endings for each piece were beautifully done. I was surprised. Sometimes, I didn’t think certain situations were going to work out…then, to find that they did. I was hooked. I would love to write a review for each novella, but I’m afraid that I’ll give too much away.

Shelly Shepard Gray’s A Reunion in Pinecraft was a perfect summer Amish tale. Young Amish men and women met that summer. New beginnings. Tender, sweet, and messy. I loved it. 

Amy Clipston’s Summer Storm was brilliant too. A young Amish man and woman loved each other for along time. This tale was a coming of age read. The young Amish man had a lot to learn. His love, patiently waited for him. Their love was inspiring. 

Kathleen Fuller’s Lakeside Love was an eye opener. I found that their is much more to our outside looks than originally thought. Those of us who don’t have the good looks on our side can easily relate to the Amish sister who was deemed plain by all. Hearts of gold were found in this sweet read. 

Kelly Irvin’s Sweet Kiss was a story of determination and growing up…promising. This novella showed how life can be messy but how it can also be good. Losing loved ones isn’t easy. A young Amish woman lost her mom and took over for her mother. She soon finds that she’s not needed as much as before and that sometimes there are other things God has planned for her. Like the determined yet good looking Amish man. The one willing to prove to her that he’s the only one for her. I felt so in love with these characters…

Overall, An Amish Summer was packed full of clean yet engaging stories. They were well-written. The characters were different as the sun and moon. But each one has similar issues. Issues revolving on finding the one for them. Love comes and goes. It surprises us when we least expect it to…I highly recommend this Amish collection to readers worldwide. 

Review: The Sweet Smell of Magnolias and Memories



Synopsis:

Jacey met the man of her dreams a year ago—and hasn’t seen him since. Finally relocating him as the pastor at her best friend’s wedding was the very last thing she expected.

A year ago, Jacey was trapped on a rooftop during a flood with perfect strangers, including a family and a man named Colin. After two days there together, she had no doubt that Colin was the man of her dreams. When they were finally rescued he tucked his phone number into her pocket. But an accident with the rescue boat left her hospitalized with amnesia and PTSD . . . and his number nowhere to be found.

Now, Jacey has still only recovered bits and pieces of her memory from that time. She clearly remembers Colin—but not his last name or any other details that would help her locate him. She’s trying to immerse herself in the joy of her best friend’s wedding . . . when she looks up at the end of the aisle only to discover Colin there in the minister’s role. Shock is an understatement.

On one hand, she’s elated to see him again. And then reality sets in. She never intended to get married or have kids. And being a minister’s wife was definitely never on her list. Was Colin not the man she thought he was? Or has the amnesia changed her more than she realized?

With the typical wit and honesty Celeste Fletcher McHale is becoming known for, it’s time for Jacey to take a fresh look at her life. Could this string of unexpected events have been setting her up for something far better than what she had planned for herself?

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

The Sweet Smell of Magnolias and Memories by Celeste Fletcher McHale is an enchanting tale. Love is a powerful thing, if we leapt it into our lives. Jacey isn’t sure about love. Yet life has offered her the opportunity to take it. First, she must find courage in herself. Or else lose what could have been…

Celeste Fletcher McHale has combined fear, love, faith, and hope into a masterpiece. The outcome is phenomenal. I felt sadness, fear, and hope. The main character struggles each day and little by little she transforms into a braver woman. The Sweet Smell of Magnolias and Memories is indeed a perfect read for all. Especially, women. Memories and feelings come out and it’s up to Jacey to decide what will come. Overall, I recommend this beautifully written novel to readers worldwide. 

Review: The Evaporation of Sofi Snow



Synopsis:

Ever since the Delonese ice-planet arrived eleven years ago, Sofi’s dreams have been vivid. Alien. In a system where Earth’s corporations rule in place of governments and the humanoid race orbiting the moon are allies, her only constant has been her younger brother, Shilo. As an online gamer, Sofi battles behind the scenes of Earth’s Fantasy Fighting arena where Shilo is forced to compete in a mix of real and virtual blood sport. But when a bomb takes out a quarter of the arena, Sofi’s the only one who believes Shilo survived. She has dreams of him. And she’s convinced he’s been taken to the ice-planet.
Except no one but ambassadors are allowed there.
For Miguel, Earth’s charming young playboy, the games are of a different sort. As Ambassador to the Delonese, his career has been built on trading secrets and seduction. Until the Fantasy Fight’s bomb goes off. Now the tables have turned and he’s a target for blackmail. The game is simple: Help the blackmailers, or lose more than anyone can fathom, or Earth can afford. 

Rating: 4.5-stars

Review:

The Evaporation of Sofi Snow by Mary Weber is a fascinating YA book. The race to find answers is thrilling. A young girl loses her brother and a young man is worried he lost her, Sofi. Sofi isn’t sure if her brother is really gone or not. Miguel may know something…only now, he’s being blackmailed. Can an online gamer and an Abassador find a way to beat the odds?

Sofi is clever. She’s a charcater that I can easily connect to. Her loss and grief over her brother pulled me closer to her. When she thinks her brother may not be gone likeeveryone states…she goes searching for the truth. Her determination and bravery make this a worthy adventure. Then there’s Miguel. He is in a difficult position. Not sure of who Sofi really is but is pulled to her by a connection, soon leads him into danger. Video games and aliens are taken to a whole level in this stunning tale. Intrigue, suspense, and a deadly plot will keep readers sucked into The Evaporation of Sofi Snow. Mary Weber’s talent can be seen through her words. Every page absorbed me into the conflict…overall, I highly recommend this novel. 

Review: Of Stillness and Storm




Synopsis:

It took Lauren and her husband ten years to achieve their dream—reaching primitive tribes in remote regions of Nepal. But while Sam treks into the Himalayas for weeks at a time, finding passion and purpose in his work among the needy, Lauren and Ryan stay behind, their daily reality more taxing than inspiring. For them, what started as a calling begins to feel like the family’s undoing. 

At the peak of her isolation and disillusion, a friend from Lauren’s past enters her life again. But as her communication with Aidan intensifies, so does the tension of coping with the present while reengaging with the past. It’s thirteen-year-old Ryan who most keenly bears the brunt of her distraction.

Intimate and bold, Of Stillness and Storm weaves profound dilemmas into a tale of troubled love and honorable intentions gone awry.

Rating: 5-stars

Review:

Of Stillness and Storm by Michele Phoenix is a stunning tale. The emotional journey is like a strong current taking readers deeper into the characters’ lives. Sad, heartbreaking, and silent. The pages bring to life one family’s struggles. They started out as one unit and then…into broken pieces. Only time will tell if they ever heal and become whole again. Michele Phoenix has created a beautiful heart wrenching masterpiece. The characters dilemmas are so real,that it’s frightening. Readers like myself will need a box of tissues nearby. A storm so powerful will drag readers into an unforgettable world. A mother’s love, a broken marriage, and an injured child are just the highlights to this story. Communication comes and goes. It left me wondering if the communication between the parents will ever connect once more like they used to…and what will happen if it doesn’t. Captivating, intense, and suspenseful. Of Stillness and Storm is indeed a wonderful novel. The title fits the tale like a glove. I couldn’t stop reading this book. I can’t wait to see what this talented writer brings next. Overall, I highly recommend it to readers worldwide. 

Review: When Death Draws Near

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Synopsis:

Gwen Marcey takes death in stride. Until she’s faced with her own mortality.

Forensic artist Gwen Marcey is between jobs when she accepts temporary work in Pikeville, Kentucky—a small town facing big-city crime. But before Gwen can finish her first drawing of the serial rapist who is on the loose, the latest witness vanishes. Just like all the others.

Gwen suspects a connection between the rapist and the “accidental” deaths that are happening around town, but the local sheriff has little interest in her theories. When her digitally-obsessed teenage daughter joins her, Gwen turns her attention to a second assignment: going undercover in a serpent-handling church. She could get a handsome reward for uncovering illegal activity—a reward she desperately needs, as it seems her breast cancer has returned. But snakes aren’t the only ones ready to kill. Can Gwen uncover the truth—and convince anyone to believe her—before she becomes a victim herself?

In a thrilling race against time, When Death Draws Near plunges us into cold-case murders, shady politics, and a den of venomous suspects.

Rating: 5 stars

Review:

When Death Draws Near by Carrie Stuart Parks is a fascinating read. There’s major politics involved. Murders and one determined woman set on solving the murder cases. The only issues at hand are the facts that her cancer has come back…and nobody believes her “theories”. A serial rapist is out there and witnesses are disappearing…a sketch artist won’t stop until the cases are solved. But will she end of dead before solving them or will she make it through it all alive and solved? Carrie Stuart Parks novel is brilliantly well-written. Every page is full of action, suspense and danger. With the leading heroine being a single mother of a teenage daughter there are plenty of laugh out loud moments that readers will enjoy. Fast-paced and one exciting adventure mystery waiting for all to read. Overall, I highly recommend it to all. When Death Draws Near is a definite must read.

 

 

Book Review: A Heart’s Promise by Colleen Coble

A Heart’s Promise by Colleen Coble is a must read for all. Her romantic novel portrays the story of a strong young woman whose friend makes her promise something. Something so great that it alone has power that can shatter all her dreams of being with the man she loves. Is a promise to a dying friend worth all the heartache that may come in the future? No one knows until fate brings them into such a challenge that is more challenging than they could bare.

Colleen Coble has once again created a beautiful rich world where friendship and love collide. One woman’s courage and journey as she struggles with the desires of her heart and the one of friendship. Emmie Croftner is love with Issac. He is willing to do whatever it takes to win back her heart and hand. But then Emmie has even more trouble to bare. Another woman has her heart set for Issac. Can things work out for two who love each other or will fate keep them apart? A Heart’s Promise is a perfect read. Readers can easily set themselves into the characters’ shoes. Tough decisions call for tough choices. Readers will be lured deeply into this engaging novel and wondering what will come between Emmie and Issac if anything at all. I enjoyed reading this romance story and would recommend it to others. I also rate it a five out of five stars for it’s well written plot and interesting characters.

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