Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Honeysuckle Dreams

Book description: "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."

My review:  I am enjoying this series by Denise Hunter. Honeysuckle Dreams has a plot that is unfortunately not uncommon today. Although this can be a very volatile subject, Ms. Hunter kept the subject serious when needed, but also added plenty of light moments to keep from being too series in a fiction novel. Brady is a heroic character in an unusual way. He handles his situation in ways that are foreign to most people today. His faith is real and living a life devoted to Christ shows in his words and actions. Hope reacts to her situation in a real way that showed how circumstances can affect us, but those committed to Christ will learn and change and ultimately do what is right. I appreciated both of these characters and the lessons taught on the pages of this book. A great story to continue this series. This review is in response to receiving a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Together Forever

Book description: "Determined to find her lost younger sister, Marianne Neumann takes a job as a placing agent with the Children's Aid Society in 1858 New York. She not only hopes to offer children a better life, but prays she'll be able to discover whether Sophie ended up leaving the city on an orphan train so they can finally be reunited.

Andrew Brady, her fellow agent on her first placing-out trip, is a former schoolteacher who has an easy way with the children, firm but tender and friendly. Underneath his charm and handsome looks, though, seems to linger a grief that won't go away--and a secret from his past that he keeps hidden. 

As the two team up, placing orphans in the small railroad towns of Illinois, they find themselves growing ever closer . . . until a shocking tragedy threatens to upend all their work and change one of their lives forever."

My review: I have read so many books that sometimes it's hard to keep up with the different series that I have started. As I read Together Forever, I quickly realized that this is book two in a series that I started a while back. It didn't take me long to recall that first book, and I became engrossed in the continuing story. This was another story with unexpected twists and turns. The author, Jody Hedlund, chose a unique way to tell the story by using Marianne and Drew, the placing agents for the orphans, to tell the story. Most orphan train stories are told from the perspective of a particular orphan or orphans. I also really enjoyed the historical detail. Another great book that helped me get to know Marianne. I look forward to the next book in the series. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review.

Monday, May 14, 2018

The Road Home

Book description: "Grieving the death of her Amish parents and the separation from her nine close-knit siblings, Lena Rose Schwartz consoles herself that her new life in Lancaster County won't be forever. Surely someday soon she will return to her beloved Michigan settlement, including her beau. But even as she holds on to hope for a reunion with those she loves most, she discovers that Lancaster holds charms of its own. Will she find the courage to open her heart to other possibilities?"

My review: Beverly Lewis is my favorite author for Amish fiction. The Road Home is another novel that keeps her at the top of my favorites list! This particular story took a few unusual twists and turns and didn't necessarily end the way I expected. I really couldn't decide what I wanted to happen to Lena in the end. That made the plot that much stronger in my opinion. Once again Lewis's characters are personable and real. Lena lived a life of trust in God that was not perfect, and each of the characters showed the ups and downs of life with real struggles. I look forward to another book with these particular characters. I received a copy of the is book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Friday, April 6, 2018

In Places Hidden

Book description:  "Camrianne Coulter's brother Caleb is a successful San Francisco attorney. But when three months go by without a word from the usually communicative Caleb, Camri boards a train to the booming West Coast city to find out for herself why he hasn't written. When she arrives at his home, nobody seems to know where he is, or what has become of him.

Camri's search for her brother leads her deep into the political corruption of the city--and into the acquaintance of Patrick Murdock, who Caleb successfully defended from a false murder charge. Getting to know this handsome Irish contractor challenges all of Camri's privileged beliefs, but Patrick is unshakably loyal to her brother, and he seems to know more about what happened to Caleb than anyone else. As the two edge closer to the truth behind Caleb's disappearance, they risk angering the powerful forces that control the city. Can Camri trust Patrick to protect her from the dangers that lie hidden in San Francisco's backstreets?"

My review:  As with all of Tracie Peterson's books, I enjoyed reading In Places Hidden. There were a couple of times the story line was a little confusing with some of the details of the mystery, but overall, it was an intriguing story that kept me turning pages. I enjoyed Camri's story as well as her two friends, and hopefully their stories will continue in the next books in this series. I felt that Camri and Patrick's relationship was a little rushed under the circumstances, but that did not take away from the story. Mrs. Peterson has a great start to her next series. I look forward to reading them. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

If I Live

Book description:  "Casey Cox is still on the run after being indicted for murder. The hunt that began with her bloody footprints escalates, and she’s running out of places to hide. Her face is all over the news, and her disguises are no longer enough. It’s only a matter of time before someone recognizes her.
Dylan Roberts, the investigator who once hunted her, is now her only hope. Terrifying attempts on Dylan’s life could force Casey out of hiding. The clock is ticking on both their lives, but exposing the real killers is more complicated than they knew. Amassing the evidence to convict their enemies draws Dylan and Casey together, but their relationship has consequences. Will one life have to be sacrificed to protect the other?"
My review:  What a great ending to a great series! A page-turner for sure! From the first words of the first book in this series, I was hooked. Waiting for the second and third books to be released was agony. I read this final book in the series in one sitting. I couldn't put it down! Casey was one of those characters that felt so real I thought I would see her story in the news. Terri Blackstock is an amazing suspense author and this is my favorite series of hers. I'm usually not a fan of multiple points of view, but with this series I didn't care. If you love suspense, this is a series you don't want to miss. Just make sure you have all three. You will kick yourself if you don't. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The View from Rainshadow Bay

Book description:  "After her husband, Jack, dies in a climbing incident, Shauna has only her five-year-old son and her helicopter charter business to live for. Every day is a struggle to make ends meet and she lives in constant fear of losing even more than she already has.
When her business partner is murdered, his final words convince Shauna that she’s in danger too. But where can she turn? Zach Bannister was her husband’s best friend and is the person she blames for his death. She’s barely spoken to him since. But right now he seems her only hope for protecting her son.
Zach is only too happy to assuage his guilt over Jack’s death by helping Shauna any way he can. But there are secrets involved dating back to Shauna’s childhood that more than one person would prefer to stay hidden.
In The View from Rainshadow Bay, suspense, danger, and a longing to love again ignite amid the gorgeous lavender fields of Washington State."
My review: I sometimes feel that my review of books by Colleen Coble are all the same! That is because all her books are amazing! This one is no exception! The characters, setting, and plot pulled me into the story. The suspense kept me turning pages late into the night. There are several Christian themes in this book, but the one that stood out the most to me was the theme of forgiveness. I always appreciate the Christian themes that are presented. This book is a great start to a new series. I already feel like I know the characters, and I am looking forward to reading more about them. I received a copy of this book from the publisher for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Blue Ridge Sunrise

Book description: "Former free spirit Zoe Collins swore she’d never again set foot in Copper Creek or speak to the man who broke her heart. But return she must when her beloved Granny dies, leaving the family legacy to Zoe—a peach orchard nestled at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
When Zoe returns home with her daughter and boyfriend Kyle, she finds that she’s the only person in town who doesn’t expect her to give up the life she’s established far away from Copper Creek. Everyone believes she was born to run the orchard, but how can she make it her home after so many years?
Cruz Huntley never quite got over his first love, Zoe Collins, the little sister of his best friend Brady. Not when she cheated on him during their “break,” not when she took off to parts unknown with good-for-nothing Kyle Jenkins, and not even now—five years later.
As life-changing decisions and a history with Cruz hang over Zoe’s head, tensions rise between her and Kyle. Even as she comes to terms with the shifting relationships in her life, Zoe still isn’t sure if she can remain in Copper Creek with her new responsibilities . . . and her first love."
My review: This is not a book with everything falling into place perfectly.  Life happens and the characters are human. While this book does of course have a "perfect" ending, the path there is anything but. I appreciate that about this story. I thought the trips back in time helped with understanding the story. It gave more meaning to the plot and a better understanding of the characters. I have enjoyed other books by Denise Hunter and this one was no exception. Her characters are relatable and her plots are well-developed. If you are looking for a good book to read over the holidays, this is one I can recommend. I am looking forward to the next book in this series. I received a copy of this book from the publisher through the Booklook Blogger Program in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.