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Stranded by Dani Pettrey

Book - StrandedAbout the Book:
Author: Dani Pettrey
Publisher: Bethany House
Publication Date: September 2013
Series: Alaskan Courage – Book 3
Find the review elsewhere:
Amazon ▪ Blogger ▪ Goodreads
Genre: Fiction; Suspense, Romance, Christian Fiction
Rating: 5 out of 5

Review: Fans returning to the Last Chance Frontier and Alaskan wilderness will find Gage McKenna and Darcy St. James reunited when Darcy’s friend disappears off a cruise ship. Working on the smarts she honed as a former investigative reporter, Darcy left the job following a conscious troubled by a case, a decision she made when where the lines should be drawn begin blurring. Now she is drawn back in while trying to protect her now-missing friend and much to her dismay she finds Gage will also be a working member of the cruise – along with his family who have signed a contract to provide expert, guided tours at various scenic locations. When past and present collide, Darcy and Gage discover it’s not just Abby who is in danger – or missing, Darcy has also made herself a target. Continue reading “Stranded by Dani Pettrey”

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Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering

About the Book:Rules of Murder - Copy
Author: Julianna Deering
Publisher: Bethany House
Publication Date: 2013
Series: A Drew Farthering Mystery – book 1
Genre: Fiction; Historical, Mystery
Rating: 5 out of 5

Life for Andrew Farthering has been an easy one. As the only son of a wealthy entrepreneur, Drew lived a comfortable country life but since the passing of his father, he was left with his widowed mother – a woman who never emotionally connected with her son, as a child, Drew became enamored with mystery novels, which instilled in him a love of solving a jolly good puzzle. His stepfather, who was a business partner with his father wishes Drew would join him in the business, however Drew has never felt totally at ease with the man. Coinciding in the aftermath of his mother scandalizing the Farthering name, trouble comes a-calling in Drew’s village – or rather right on his own estate grounds, Drew has more mystery than he could have ever wished for. With the help of his best friend, Nick and a sassy American guest, Madeline Parker, Drew and the gang search for the clues that are eluding the police only to find out murder is not just the stuff Agatha Christie novels are made of.   Continue reading “Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering”

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Welcome to Last Chance by Cathleen Armstrong

 Book - Welcome to Last ChanceAbout the Book:
Author: Cathleen Armstrong
Publisher: Revell
Publication Date: 2013
Series: A Place to Call to Home – Book 1
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary Fiction

Rating: 3 ½ out of 5

Long ago, Lainie Davis let go of her would-be dreams. She learned that even a mother’s love can be bought when, at fourteen, her mother threw her out, choosing her current live-in instead. Now, she’s learned the reality that the man you love will choose his vice every time over Lainie’s love. Lainie has had enough. Packing up her meager belongings after months of saving, Lainie leaves behind Nick and LA without a backward glance only to end up stranded on her way to her destination in the small town of Last Chance Mexico. There, Lainie is met with warm-hearted people who would give a stranger a hug before they’d betray them. Despite being a girl who doesn’t think she has room in her life for their lifestyle, Lainie soon finds her resolve melting towards these people. But it’s only a matter of time before her past catches up to her. Continue reading “Welcome to Last Chance by Cathleen Armstrong”

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Bleeding Heart by Amber Stokes

About the Book: Bleeding-Heart-Cover-final4
Author: Amber Stokes
Publication Date: 2013
Publisher: Create Space (Self-Publishing via Amazon Kindle)
Genre: Fiction; Historical, Christian
Rating: 4 out of 5

Over the years, self-publishing has had a stigma attached to it. Why, I do not know – in the past six months I, as an avid reader have turned pages on a handful of self-published novels, and have found each one to be worth the paper on which they were printed. This one is different since it is authored by a lovely writer whom I have been honored to get to know certainly as an encouraging blogging buddy and as a friend. Amber sets her story in Oregon in the early 1800’s and on top of a setting she is passionate about (and researched), she also crafted a hard-hitting novel involving characters that are broken in unusual ways – imperfect beyond the “normal” character flaws readers usually encounter. The heroine is Sally Clay, a woman no longer a lady who was left to make her way in the world when the man she thought she loved spurns her for better prospects. Over the timespan of many months, Sally’s life becomes entangled with Joe and Seth Clifton – brothers with broken hearts of their own, and an Irish immigrant named Myghal. Continue reading “Bleeding Heart by Amber Stokes”

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Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon

About the Book:Book - Doon
Author(s): Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon
Publisher: Blink, a subsidiary of Zondervan
Publication Date: 2013 (ARC)
Series: Doon – Book 1
Genre: Fiction; Historical, Contemporary, Young Adult
Rating: 3 ½ out of 5

Review: Long before I realized this book was a re-telling of the timeless Brigadoon tale, the smoky intrigue on the outside of this book captivated me. When opportunity arose to obtain a copy and review Doon, I snapped it up and prepared to get lost in an angst-ridden romance. The young adult novel tells the story of besties, McKenna and Veronica who, upon graduation make a much-needed escape to Scotland. Kenna’s gift to Veronica is a ticket to come along and celebrate their last summer before college and internships begin. Having an aunt from Scotland who has now passed away, the girl’s use Gracie’s cottage and soon learn that Veronica’s visions of a blonde-haired guy may not merely be visions – they may be a precursor of what’s to come. When the two girls find a portal through the brig o’ doon into a mystical land of royalty – protected by a powerful enchantment, and witches, they become embroiled in a fight to save the mysterious land …and their hearts. Continue reading “Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon”

random fun

Memorable Fictional Couples, Part 2

Beckett and Madison2You may remember back in April, a post showed up chronicling favorite fictional couples inspired by one of the (many) crazy “book conversations” we girls have had in the book community. Putting it together, it was surprising how easy it was to separate the truly “good” couples from the ordinary. After much discussion (which I thank you all for providing!), it seemed like a good idea to write a “part two” of this meme – after all some had to be left out for specific reasons and others I’d not yet had the pleasure of meeting.

Without further ado, here are some of those favorite pairings – whether it be their sizzling chemistry or more simply how they interacted on the page, the list is below the cut! Continue reading “Memorable Fictional Couples, Part 2”

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Born of Persuasion by Jessica Dotta

Book - Born of PersausionAbout the Book:
Author: Jessica Dotta
Publisher: Tyndale House
Publication Date: September 2013 (ARC Book)
Series: Price of Privilege – book 1
Genre: Fiction; Historical, Mystery
Rating: 4 out of 5

Let’s start with a confession. As a girl who hasn’t read “Gothic” fiction – or had very little exposure to it, the most prominent name in the genre that comes to mind when calling to mind its singular style are the Bronte sisters. Between the three of them, the genre was proudly represented – albeit often with a tragic outcome. Debuting in the fiction market – and her first novel, this year, Jessica Dotta is bringing a fresh voice to the genre lending a unique perspective and narrative to the young heroine. The story opens with the 17-year-old Julia Elliston arriving at Am Meer, the simple estate is home to Julia’s best friend, Elizabeth and her mother Mrs. Windham who attempts to socially control Julia under the guise of  being her “chaperone.” Under the protection of a mysterious “guardian” who is planning to place Julia in a service position in Scotland, Julia make plans of her own in order to rid herself of this faceless stranger but before that can see reality, she is soon caught in the middle of a power struggle she doesn’t understand and becomes a pawn of a woman of the aristocracy – a fragile position that could be her undoing. Continue reading “Born of Persuasion by Jessica Dotta”

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To Whisper Her Name by Tamera Alexander

About the Book:Book - To Whisper Her Name
Author: Tamera Alexander
Publisher: Zondervan
Publication Date: 2012
Series: Belle Meade Plantation, Book 1
Genre: Fiction; Historical
Rating: 3 ½ out of 5

Review: In the spirit of following my number one “rule” in reviewing, I have to admit that though expertly written, while reading this, boredom set in a handful of times. I have a theory for why this one didn’t appeal to my reading personality but we’ll go into that later. Our main protagonists are Olivia, a widow resulting indirectly (he wasn’t a causality of the fighting rather from his pacifist beliefs) from the war and Ridley Cooper, a former soldier who is protecting wounding secrets of his own. The both of them meet on a plantation owned by the husband of Olivia’s dear friend, Elizabeth. Herein is where that lack of interest figures in. Everything circles back to the “working parts” of Belle Meade being a stud farm and not being an animal person, I fought boredom during the conversations and dealings with the horses. Counteracting that, any fan of civil war era aficionados will be impressed by how “period-friendly” this book was. Everything “felt” very authentic and transports the reader back into the (post) Civil war era – even snippets of it reminded me, in visualizing it, of Gone with the Wind; I do think Tamera got a bit too caught up in the descriptions of the surroundings which stalled the story in places. Continue reading “To Whisper Her Name by Tamera Alexander”