Monday, July 31, 2017

Any Dream Will Do by Debbie Macomber

  • ISBN-10: 0399181199
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399181191
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books 

Release Date ~ August 8, 2017


Shay Benson adored her younger brother, Caden, and that got her into trouble. When he owed money, Shay realized she would do anything to help him avoid the men who were threatening him, and she crossed lines she never should have crossed. Now, determined to start fresh, she finds herself in search of a place to stay and wanders into a church to escape from the cold.
Pastor Drew Douglas adored his wife. But when he lost her, it was all he could do to focus on his two beautiful kids, and his flock came in a distant third. Now, as he too is thinking about a fresh start, he walks through his sanctuary and finds Shay sitting in a pew.
The pair strike up a friendship—Drew helps Shay get back on her feet, and she reignites his sense of purpose—that, over time, turns into something deeper, something soulful, spiritual, and possibly romantic. Even Drew’s two children are taken with this woman who has brought light back into their lives. Perhaps most important, Shay learns to trust again as she, in turn, proves herself trustworthy to her adopted community.
But Caden’s return to town and a disastrous secret threaten to undo the life Shay has tried so hard to rebuild. It will take the utmost courage and faith if she and Drew hope to find healing and open their hearts to a brighter future.

Any Dream Will Do by Debbie Macomber was the perfect read for me this summer! This book is all about starting over, finding faith, forgiveness, redemption, change and of course, romance. It remained true to Ms. Macomber's writing style of realistic characters, well defined relationships and a good strong plot full of clean romance. 

What really touched my heart the most was the sub-themes Ms. Macomber wove into her story. Those of faith, redemption, forgiveness, finding one's self and living true to that self. Accepting someone for who they are and not turning away from them if they aren't who we usually would socialize or reach out to. 

We all have made poor choices and mistakes; some big and some small. Some with repercussions that quickly pass and others that can last a life time.  Within this book, Ms. Macomber showed that anything can be accomplished through God's love and faith if we just reach out to Him. 

Any Dream Will Do is a heart touching story that is well written and moved me emotionally on many levels. I highly recommend it! 

5 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Macomber, Ballentine Books and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Sandpiper Cove by Irene Hannon

  • ISBN-10: 0800727681
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800727680
  • Publisher: Revell (April 4, 2017)


Hope Harbor police chief Lexie Graham has plenty on her plate raising her son alone and dealing with a sudden rash of petty theft and vandalism in her coastal Oregon hometown. As a result, she has zero time for extracurricular activities--including romance. Ex-con Adam Stone isn't looking for love either--but how ironic is it that the first woman to catch his eye is a police chief? Yet wishing for things that can never be is foolish.

Nevertheless, when Lexie enlists Adam's help to keep a young man from falling into a life of crime, sparks begin to fly. And as they work together, it soon becomes apparent that God may have a different--and better--future planned for them than either could imagine.

I have loved the Hope Harbor series since I read the first book (Hope Harbor). With each subsequent book I have fallen more in love with the town, it's residents and the beautiful coast and surroundings. I know it sounds corny but I really wish this was a "real" place - what a wonderful sea side town to live in! 

Sandpiper Cove, the third book in this series lives up to and beyond the prior books. The story is delightfully engaging with realistic and flawed characters facing love and experiencing life's challenges head on.  I enjoyed this book from start to finish and walked away with a big grin on my face.  I definitely recommend this to all. I can't wait to read the fourth books ~ Pelican Point due to be out in April 2018!

5 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Hannon, Revell Publishing, Library Thing and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Underground River by Martha Conway

  • ISBN-10: 1501160206
  • ISBN-13: 978-1501160202
  • Publisher: Touchstone
Release Date~ June 20, 2017


Set aboard a nineteenth century riverboat theater, this is the moving, page-turning story of a charmingly frank and naive seamstress who is blackmailed into saving runaways on the Underground Railroad, jeopardizing her freedom, her livelihood, and a new love.

It’s 1838, and May Bedloe works as a seamstress for her cousin, the famous actress Comfort Vertue—until their steamboat sinks on the Ohio River. Though they both survive, both must find new employment. Comfort is hired to give lectures by noted abolitionist, Flora Howard, and May finds work on a small flatboat, Hugo and Helena’s Floating Theatre, as it cruises the border between the northern states and the southern slave-holding states.

The Underground River by Martha Conway has received great reviews across the blogging world and the Internet. Mine will not be one of those, unfortunately. 

I love reading historical fiction but this time, not so much. I found The Underground River too dry and I had  a very hard time getting into the story and reading it. So much so that I couldn't finish this book. 

It's rare but when I have to post a review such as this one, I ask that readers of this blog put aside my review. This is a well loved author who is known for great books.  Check out The Underground River for yourself, make your own opinions!  

2 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Conway, Touchstone Publishing, and Netgalley and Edelweiss for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Shadow ~ Wendy Darling #3 by Colleen Oakes

  • ASIN: B072JVYPB6
  • Publisher: SparkPress 
  • Publication Date: July 18, 2017


Wendy Darling has found herself once again in the arms of charming Peter Pan, the god-child who desires power above all things. This time, though, Wendy burns not with passion but with a secret: with Hook as her ally, she is there to defeat the evil that lies inside of Peter, the evil that holds all Neverland hostage—the Shadow. 

To do this, Wendy must quietly undo Peter from inside his heart while at the same time convincing Tink to betray the twisted love that binds them together. This is a task made nearly impossible by the arrival of Booth, her sweetheart from London and a new pawn in Peter’s manipulative game—a boy whose heart she must break in order to save his life. 

As all of Neverland prepares to fight, Wendy races to untangle Peter’s connection to the Shadow, a secret long buried in the Forsaken Garden. When the time comes, pirates, mermaids, Lost Boys, and the Darling family will all rise—but if Wendy can’t call the Shadow, they will all be destroyed by Peter’s dark soul. War has come to paradise, and Neverland will never be the same. 

Shadow  is the third and final book in the Wendy Darling Series by Colleen Oaks. This series overall has been a unique take on the fairytale retelling of Peter Pan

This book is full of action, adventure and romance. The world building in this book was phenomenal  with well developed characters and a flowing story-line that wrapped up this series rather nicely.  In my opinion, Shadow is the best of the three in this series!

3.5 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Oaks, Sparks Press and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Secrets in Summer by Nancy Thayer

  • Publication Date: May 16, 2017
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
Publisher: Ballantine Books (May 16, 2017)


Memorial Day weekend means that seasonal visitors have descended on the glamorous island of Nantucket. For year-round resident Darcy Cotterill, it means late-night stargazing in the backyard of the beautiful house she grew up in and inherited from her beloved grandmother. It’s also Darcy’s chance to hit the beach and meet her new summertime neighbors. But the last person the thirty-year-old librarian expects to see staying next door is her ex-husband, Boyz, along with his wife, Autumn, and stepdaughter, Willow.

Darcy must also navigate the highs and lows of a new romantic relationship with local carpenter Nash Forester even as she becomes smitten with handsome vacationer Clive Rush, a musicologist in town to write a book and visit family. And she finds herself pulled into the concerns of Boyz, Autumn, a charming elderly neighbor, and an at-risk teen.

As the season nears its end, Darcy must decide her next move: retreating to the comforts of her steady and secure island life, or risking it all for a chance at true happiness.

Summer time ... Sweet, Sweet Summer Time! 

The Summer months are busy but there is always a bit of time to relax, unwind and enjoy a bit of good reading!

Secrets in Summer was the perfect Summer reading for me this past month. Romance, intrigue, Nantucket Summers, tangled emotions and sweet moments. The stuff that makes for an excellent romance read ~ any time of year!

4 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Thayer,  Random House LLC and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Friday, July 14, 2017

With You Always by Jodi Hedlund

  • ISBN-10: 0764218042
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764218040
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (June 6, 2017)


When a financial crisis in 1850s New York leaves three orphaned sisters nearly destitute, the oldest, Elise Neumann, knows she must take action. She's had experience as a seamstress, and the New York Children's Aid Society has established a special service: placing out seamstresses and trade girls. Even though Elise doesn't want to leave her sisters for a job in Illinois, she realizes this may be their last chance. 

The son of one of New York City's wealthiest entrepreneurs, Thornton Quincy faces a dilemma. His father is dying, and in order to decide which of his sons will inherit everything, he is requiring them to do two things in six months: build a sustainable town along the Illinois Central Railroad, and get married. Thornton is tired of standing in his twin brother's shadow and is determined to win his father's challenge. He doesn't plan on meeting a feisty young woman on his way west, though.

I love reading historical romances and Jody Hedlund has become one of my favorite "go to" authors. She writes wonderful romances set in detailed, richly described historical settings.  

With You Always is rich in history, faith and romance. While it is a wonderful romance story, this book also brought to my attention the Orphan Train movement, a part of history that I hadn't ever really focused on. Ms. Hedlund brought this era to life for me with her story and I hope she will do a sequel  to round out this delightful and emotionally moving story.  

I highly recommend With You Always and I can't wait to read more of Ms. Hedlund's books!  

5 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Hedlund, Bethany House Publishing and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Under a Summer Sky by Melody Carlson

  • ISBN-10: 0800723597
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800723590
  • Publisher: Revell (June 6, 2017)


High school art teacher Nicole Anderson is looking forward to a relaxing summer in Savannah, house-sitting and managing an art gallery for a family friend. The house is luxurious in a way that only old money could make it, and the gallery promises interesting days in a gorgeous setting. Yet it isn't long before her ideal summer turns into more than she bargained for: a snooty gallery employee who's determined to force her out, a displaced adolescent roosting in the attic, and two of Nicole's close childhood friends--who also happen to be brothers--vying for her attention.

With a backdrop of a beautiful historical city, incredible architecture, and even an alleged ghost or two, combined with the opportunity for romance . . . anything can happen!

Under a Summer Sky is the third book in Melody Carlson's  Follow Your Heart Series.  The story is set in Savannah, Georgia and lends a beautiful back drop to a wonderful, romantic and  enjoyable story. 

A great way to spend a few relaxing moments of time while sipping your favorite beverage and enjoying the Summer months!

4 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Carlson, Revell Publishing and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Sweetbriar Cottage by Denise Hunter

  • ISBN-10: 0718090489
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718090487
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (June 13, 2017)


When Noah and Josephine discover their divorce was never actually finalized, their lives are turned upside down.
Following his divorce, Noah gave up his dream job and settled 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, 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 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?

Sweetbriar Cottage by Denise Hunter is the perfect beach summer read! It's not light reading but the author does a wonderful job of addressing the deeper subjects within this romance story. I couldn't put it down! 

4.5 Stars

I received this book for free. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own. Thank you to Ms. Hunter, Thomas Nelson Publishing, Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book.