random fun

Top Ten Books on my Bookshelf the Longest

Coming out of a holiday weekend, I figured, it’d be best to keep things simple around here. We’ve now entered the “unofficial” start of summer, and I hope you all enjoyed a wonderful holiday weekend.

Today’s official Top Ten Tuesday subject is a free-for-all, which in my estimation means, anything goes. Obviously, I couldn’t pass up this opportunity so I went back to check the TTT meme I had a while back in which I listed all of those REWIND! topics I’d like to revisit. Continue reading “Top Ten Books on my Bookshelf the Longest”

random fun

Top Ten Favorite Friendships

Clearly, I have a problem.

A reading conundrum if you will. As I was preparing to happily put together a Top Ten Tuesday “all about friendships” – which I naturally assumed would be as fun as it could be complicated, because, let’s face it, relationships are complicated – I realized when searching my literal bookshelves and later my virtual ones that I hadn’t read many books in which the friendships were primary or so memorable that they immediately leapt to mind. (You guys really have to help me correct this. Pretty, please?) Instead of skipping out, I decided to expand my search parameters by eliminating the stipulation that the book had to be about friendship, and include film and television, and luckily, I came up with enough BFF’s to satisfy a list. Continue reading “Top Ten Favorite Friendships”

book, Book Review

The House that Love Built by Beth Wiseman

About the Book: Book - The House that Love Built
Author: Beth Wiseman
Source: Publisher Provided
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2013
Find the Review Elsewhere:
AmazonBlogger Goodreads
Rating: 4 ½ out of 5

Review: Never reading anything by Beth Wiseman meant that upon opening this novel, there were no expectations. Regardless of a slow beginning, this novel shaped up to be a splendid story full of idiosyncrasies and romanticism that many novelists cannot capture to the page. Looking up Beth’s previous work reveals this story is uncharacteristic to her usual writing, meaning this is a rare departure for her as she tells a contemporary romance about a woman named Brooke Holloway, who is raising her two children after losing her husband to a tragic accident while busily operating her hardware store. Into their small Texas town comes Owen, a man smarting from his own past involving a painful divorce and in an effort to spite his wife, he purchases her dream house, working to restore it to its former glory. When these two cross paths – amidst the most unusual circumstances, their hearts are reawakened and they discover the healing powers of letting go… and forgiveness. Continue reading “The House that Love Built by Beth Wiseman”

book, Book Review

Silenced by Dani Pettrey

About the Book:Book - Silenced
Author: Dani Pettrey
Publisher: Bethany House
Source: Author, publisher
Publication Date: May 2014
Find the Review elsewhere:
Amazon BloggerGoodreads ▪ Novel Crossing
Series: Alaskan Courage, Book 4
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense
Rating: 5 out of 5

There is nothing quite so disappointing as a series that introduces us to a cast of beloved characters – whether they’re considered primary or secondary, only for some of them to never have their own story. Most series come out as the usual three-book trilogy, which for the best kind of books is never enough. Coming across a series that spans five books and covers all of its family members – the McKenna siblings, was something I hadn’t anticipated so learning it was a journey with talented suspense author, Dani Pettrey was a very good thing. Silenced is book four in the adventurous, Alaskan-set series about a group of five siblings, which focuses on eldest sister, Kayden McKenna and the man who has quietly loved her. Ever since the McKenna’s “adopted” him, Jake Westin’s troubled past – one he fled from in Boston, has slowly healed by loving Kayden. Only trouble is, Jake’s love is unrequited. Mistrusting Jake’s unusual knowledge of criminology and refusal to reveal his past, Kayden closes off her heart to him with no promise to accept the honorary McKenna until the truth of his past is exposed, and when events place Kayden with Jake – particularly when she discovers a body during a family day of rock climbing, the McKenna family must chase the truth to piece together a mystery. Continue reading “Silenced by Dani Pettrey”

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Here to Stay by Melissa Tagg

About the Book:Book - Here to Stay
Author: Melissa Tagg
Publisher: Bethany House
Source: Author, Publisher / Fiction Addict
Publication Date: 2014
Find the Review elsewhere:
AmazonBloggerFiction Addict GoodreadsNovel Crossing
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Romance
Series: Where Love Begins, Book 2
Rating: 5 out of 5

Coming back to a character we’ve already met as a secondary persona can be something of a risk if not placed in the most skillful hands. Not because readers don’t like catching up with those characters (we do!), but because sometimes your idea of them doesn’t match up with what their more subtle (even mysterious) presence as a sidekick character begins. Returning home to Whisper Shore Michigan wasn’t an easy choice for Blake Hunziker, who has lived a nomad’s life for years, but what he didn’t expect was a hero-like welcome upon his return – especially from his parents. When small town living gets in the way of forgetting, and Blake crosses paths with old friends who blame him for the tragedy they were left behind to heal from, Blake is also reunited with Autumn Kingsley the girl who dreams of travel. Autumn not only runs the only inn in competition with the Hunziker family’s upscale hotel, she is also the one girl his family wouldn’t approve of. So why then, are the two of them continuously drawn to each other? Continue reading “Here to Stay by Melissa Tagg”

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Mistaken by Karen Barnett

About the Book: Book - Mistaken
Author: Karen Barnett
Source: Amazon Purchase
Publisher: Abington Press
Publication Date: 2013
Find the Review Elsewhere:
Amazon ▪ Blogger ▪ Goodreads ▪ Novel Crossing
Rating: 4 ½ out of 5

Review: Thanks to a conversation with @SeasonsHumility, this book went on my at-the-time next Amazon order. In my house, it stayed on my bookshelf unhappily gathering dust thanks to my busy review schedule until finally the 2014 Inspy Awards gave me all the reason in the world to read Karen Barnett’s debut novel. It tells the story of Laurie Burke, who is barely able to keep her head above water in the prohibition era. Her brother is squarely in the middle of the booze running trade and her father is too busy wasting his life at the bottle leaving Laurie to hold together their fledging family. When she meets a newcomer to their small town and runs across a face from her brother’s past, Laurie immediately assumes that Daniel Shepherd is up to no good leading her to carefully guard her heart against these two men, and fight all the harder to protect those she loves. Continue reading “Mistaken by Karen Barnett”

book, Book Review

A Phantom Enchantment by Eve Marie Mont

About the Book:Book - A Phantom Enchantment
Author: Eve Marie Mont
Publisher: Kensington
Source: Publisher Provided
Publication Date: 2014
Find the Review elsewhere: Amazon ▪ Goodreads
Series: Unbound, book 3
Genre: Fiction; Contemporary Young Adult
Rating: 3 out of 5

Review: Stories that wander into reincarnation or a dreamscape territory are hit or miss for me. Some are so imaginative they pull us in with their narrative, others just seem creepy which from a reader’s perspective is hard to overcome. This story is the third novel in a trilogy that follows the now 18-year-old Emma Townsend, who in her senior year of high school attends a Paris school along with her friend Elise. Despite the allure and excitement of foreign living, Emma’s days are spent in study and missing her boyfriend, Gray. Not long after she arrives, a call from her father brings news that Gray has gone missing following a Coast Guard rescue mission he was a part of and now despite their search, the worst is assumed. Refusing to believe Gray is gone, Emma clings to hope that the search will find him safe and sound…

Only when Emma begins to see Gray in her dreams, it becomes clear he isn’t the same guy she left behind. Continue reading “A Phantom Enchantment by Eve Marie Mont”