There was an error in this gadget

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

BOOK REVIEW- THE WEDDING (Lairds' Fiancees Book 2) by Julie Garwood

The Wedding (Lairds' Fiancees Book 2) by [Garwood, Julie]
Journeying from England to Scotland, Lady Brenna has resigned herself to an arranged match with a highlander. But when a band of fierce, painted warriors captures her en route, she fearlessly meets their demand to instead marry their leader—her betrothed’s sworn enemy—the quick-tempered Connor MacAlister. 
Brenna harbors no illusions that her husband is in love with her, but their shared past gives her hope. Maybe the laird who once visited her father’s castle and charmed her with a dazzling, unexpected smile remains underneath Connor’s stern exterior. 
But as she sets out to win the man whom she has come to adore, a legacy of revenge ensnares Brenna in a furious clan war—and only her faith in her new husband can save her...  AMAZON 5 STARS

Includes an excerpt of another beloved Julie Garwood highland romance, The Bride

Loved this book.  Maybe a more accurate way of putting it is that I fell in love with Brenna and she made the story so worth reading.  I could hardly wait to see what would come out of her mouth or what she would do next.  She was one unusual child and that trait followed her through to adulthood.  She isn't even aware of how beautiful she is.  Not only does her beauty stun people but her ways do too.  

Connor had no idea what he was getting into when it came to Brenna.  Although he had met her as a young child, that should have been warning enough.  I lost count how many times, I either laughed or had a smile on my face.   
Connor was an interesting man as well.  He grew up hard; brutally losing his father and home at a really young age.  I had to shake my head a time or two when it came to his arrogant statements and feelings that after a time Brenna "would settle in."  Translation?  
That Brenna would be the model wife...compliant, doing things his way without comment or question.  Yeah, right!  But it does provide a lot of funny situations.  
It's not all fun and games though.  There is war, enemies and hidden enemies too.  Some violent attacks too. Romance, action, friendships and treachery.

Also has a really good group of secondary people; who add a whole lot to the enjoyment of the story.
All in all, a story I wouldn't mind reading more than once.  

BOOK REVIEW- A TEXAS STATE OF MIND (Port Serenity Series Book 1) by Ann DeFee

A Texas State of Mind (Port Serenity Series Book 1) by [DeFee, Ann]
Police Chief Lolly LaTullipe’s professional life runs amuck when dead drug dealers start floating up on the beach. Port Serenity, Texas is known for bird watchers and bikini clad co-eds–not murder and mayhem. Lolly’s situation becomes even more complicated when a sexy undercover narcotics cop shows up eliciting thoughts of rumpled sheets and hot summer nights. This single mom of two is afraid she’s in way over her head.
Christian Delacroix is jaded from years in drug enforcement and the appealing police chief has him reassessing his priorities and future. Is he ready for this small town with its cast of eccentric characters. And is he prepared for Lolly LaTulippe with her white-picket-fence life complete with a close-knit family and circle of friends? Not to mention her big shaggy dog and all the complications of life with a teenager.
Are diapers, PTA meetings and football games in this cop’s future?   AMAZON  3.5 STARS

This book starts out in a "stunning" way.  And you are right if you think this has a double meaning!  
Lolly is a good solid character with a flaky ex-husband and several children.  They just add to the general chaos of trying to find out who is sending frozen floaters to her town.  And what a twist its going to be when they find out the "who" and the "why" of it.   
Lolly not only has a "flaky" ex but she has some lovable but strange relatives .  Her friends have her back and add their own flavor of 
good- natured craziness. 
Christian is a good guy who when he is around Lolly lets his playfulness out and it starts the trouble in their first meeting. Christian is also an honest, hardworking, undercover cop.  
I enjoyed the friendship between Christian and his co-worker, C.J.  They had worked together so much and knew each other so well that they often knew what the other was going to do.  A well oiled team.  
C.J. was a charmer of course, and I liked him as well.  I was glad to see that he got his own book, as seen in the Excerpt "Texas Born" at the end of this book.  Yes, he was going to need his own book because he sure messed things up with Olivia in a major way.  That was another twist in this book. 

I Don't Want To Move

Saturday, June 17, 2017


Wings of the Wind (Out From Egypt Book #3) by [Cossette, Connilyn]
Alanah, a Canaanite, is no stranger to fighting and survival. When her family is killed in battle with the Hebrews, she disguises herself and sneaks onto the battlefield to avenge her family. The one thing she never counted on was surviving. 
Tobiah, a Hebrew warrior, is shocked to find an unconscious, wounded woman among the Canaanite casualties. Compelled to bring her to a Hebrew healer back at their camp, he is soon confronted with a truth he can't ignore: the only way to protect this enemy is to marry her.

Unused to being weak and vulnerable, Alanah submits to the marriage--for now. As she comes to know and respect Tobiah and his people, however, she begins to second-guess her plans of escape. But when her past has painfully unanticipated consequences, the tentative peace she's found with Tobiah, the Hebrews, and Yahweh is shaken to the core. Can Alanah's fierce heart and strength withstand the ensuing threats to her life and all she's come to love?  AMAZON 5 STARS

What a great book, I almost don't know where to start.  I enjoyed the dramatic start to the book. The main characters first meeting was as interesting as the book blurb promised.  In fact the whole book was even better than I had hoped. Bravo!
 Alanah was an outstanding character in this book.  Her father had raised her as a warrior alongside her brothers and she had learned to work hard and to be strong.  Good thing.  She was going to need that strength and more.  Tobiah was also someone that I enjoyed so much as he rescued Alanah and as he dealt with her from there on.  He was a huge fierce warrior but he also had such gentleness and caring towards others as well.  He was a man of honor and fiercely loyal to Yahweh and his teachings.  It also showed more than once, Tobiah's reverence for obeying Yahweh and not to be found in rebellion.  He knew what rebellion brought first hand.  And that obedience ended up saving his life more than once as we read the story. 

It was so good to watch the slow transformation in Alanah as she began to see how different the Hebrews were when it came to valuing life and how they followed such goodness and protection towards the women in their families.  This was so different that what she was used to and had seen before in other cultures. One thing that was surprising was that she had been around other gods but she had come to the understanding of how vile the worship was of them was. She basically felt that they took everything and gave back nothing.

I found it interesting that she had a thirty day period in which to decide if she would go or stay as Tobiah's wife.  And some of the things she had to do to conform to being in the camp of what she considered the camp of her enemies, were sometimes eyebrow raising.  Not harmful but surprising.  
It's not all about Alanah and her struggle to adjust to the Hebrew camp, although some of her battles were emotional, mental, and spiritual.  But there are also real physical battles that have to be fought by the  Hebrew men to take the land.  

I can't even begin to go into all of the other secondary people in the story, they added so much to the story.  Not in an overwhelming way either.  
I liked how the Epilogue (which I always look forward to) gave another look into the "why" of this title.  Nice touch.

I received a copy of this book via Bethany House and this is my honest opinion of it

Friday, June 16, 2017


Summer Riptide by [Lohr, Barbara]
Mandy comes home to forget…until Kevin, now a war veteran, helps her remember. Ten years ago high school sweethearts Mandy and Kevin had the whole world. Divorce and three tours of duty have stolen their dreams. In this heart warming novella romance, beach picnics, lake sunsets and moonlit swims help Mandy and Kevin heal the past so they can face the future.

A lot has changed when Mandy Klavis returns to Gull Harbor. Voted the girl most likely to succeed, she’s discovered marriage and a city career didn’t deliver. Kevin Corbin, her high school boyfriend, knows all about responsibility. Following three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, the star quarterback now struggles with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Instead of a wife, he has a one-eyed dog named Rufus.

But Kevin’s still smoking hot -- a good-hearted man with a sweet smile. When he stops in her family bakery for a raspberry kolache, unsettling memories come flooding back. Together they explore summer in Gull Harbor, the way it used to be. The lake provides carefree refuge but a hidden danger could end their dreams.   AMAZON 4 STARS

A good feel good, summer story.  Don't get me wrong, it's not all about feeling good.  Both main characters are suffering from damages.  I liked both of them and I also appreciated the way the author  described some of the things about Michigan.  She painted a really good picture of the area and even the sometimes  unpredictable weather was pretty good. I also liked how "summer people" were explained.  
When I read in the book blurb about danger I went, "huh?)  but when it came, it wasn't exactly what I had expected but it was good.  A surprise for sure. 

On a side note, I had no idea what kolaches were when it came to the bakery, so I had to look it up.  

And here are some pictures to help.  The second picture probably gives a more accurate idea of the actual size.

Larger koláč, called "frgál", typical of the Moravian Wallachia area

I received a copy of this book and this is my opinion of it.

Thursday, June 15, 2017


A Texas Second Chance (Port Serenity Series Book 5) by [DeFee, Ann]
Evil is lurking in Port Serenity, Texas. This idyllic town is known as a beach playground for sun worshippers and bird watchers—not murder and mayhem in the real estate development community. 
Zack Maynard is a California homicide cop on administrative leave who arrives to investigate the vandalism occurring on a project owned by his family business. His first meeting with Liza Henderson— the project manager in charge of the Blackwater Lake development—is more like a Monty Python comedy skit than a business meeting. She’s a widow with an extended family of eccentric characters and definitely not a typical Texas Rose. In spite of the wacky situation, she’s the first woman in years to jump-start his libido.
Can love blossom in this small town with its underground of nefarious characters? And will the good guys win? Absolutely! AMAZON 4 STARS

A fun read. 
What an interesting start to the book.  Our two main characters are having a day from hell even BEFORE they meet.  And it doesn't get all that much better immediately after.  It made for some laughs as well as a smidgen of sympathy for the "trials" each had gone through that day.  They are exhausted, hungry, aggravated and just want to wash up and go to bed.  Separately.  Well, at least at this point anyway. There is an attraction to deal with but there are plenty of other things on their plate to deal with.  
 They made for two good main characters.  With a crazy cast of secondary characters too.  Small town USA with all its beauty and quirks too.  
When anything upsets  tiny Liza's apple-cart she called in the rest of her wild support team.  Her twin sister, Maizie (who looks nothing like her and her cousin,  Sunny (when she is available).  
It was cute to to hear Zack describe Liza as a gorgeous pixie.  And the imp in him liked to rile her up and watch the firebrand temper of hers loose.  
For a "quiet" small town, there sure were more "things" going on that anyone had any idea about.  There will be romance, action and mysteries that will be solved.  At least one that is a six year old one.
There will be a H.E.A, for us romance lovers.
I felt like the romance could have been a bit deeper but the friendship between Zack and Liza did show up pretty clearly. You could see that they developed having each other's backs pretty quickly too. 

“I received this book as an ARC” and this is my honest opinion of it. 


Playing for Keeps: An Amnesia Romance (Game Time Series) by [Nichols, Alix]
He remembers everything... except the first thirty years of his life.
~ ~
Sports star-turned-coach Lucas Delaunay has no recollection of his past, despite his parents' and friends' efforts to help him. Every month of his life is accounted for. Mementos from the birthdays he celebrated, the games he played, and the women he dated fill Lucas's mind, amounting to hundreds of memories.

Shame they aren't his.

Now the founder of a Paris water polo club, Lucas's ambition is to take his team to the European and World arenas. He wants them on the podium even more than he wants to remember his past.

Enter Isabelle Ferrand, a young publicist hired to land sponsors and fundraise for the club. A few years back, Isabelle was a poloist herself. She was also a friend. Just a friend, until she fell out with him for reasons she claims she can no longer recall. But everyone--Isabelle included--insists Lucas regarded her as a sister.

Not anymore, he doesn't.

Every night, he dreams of her naked and panting beneath him. Her taste, her smell, the way her breasts fill his palms... Every morning he wakes up rock hard, groping for her in his empty bed.

With desire spinning out of control, Lucas struggles with his own non-fraternizing policy. But he must know if he hungers for Isabelle because amnesia has changed his taste in women, or if there is something she isn't telling him.

And if she might be the key to unlocking his past.   AMAZON 4.5.STARS

Wow, what a way to start a book.  And wow, way to start to hate the "hero", well at least the main character Lucas.  Wasn't sure how that was going to change.   It was interesting how that came about. 
I really enjoyed the book and it's probably my favorite of this series so far. The story idea itself I thought was interesting and I'm glad that I didn't regret reading it.  It could have gone south but I don't think it did.
I liked how the story unfolded when it came to memories and what Lucas can recover about that past.  He's not going to like all of what he finds out. 
 Isabelle oh yes, a good character and she definitely deserved better than Lucas.  Well at least the old Lucas that is. 
You know things are going to work out but the road is going to get a little bit rough.  
Good Epilogue is included with a surprise twist; a happy surprise.  

At the end of the book is a 4 Chapter look into another of her books, "Find You in Paris."

I voluntarily read an advanced reader copy of this book.