June 28, 2017

Sweetbriar Cottage

Oh what a gorgeous cover! It certainly drew me in, and, as with every book I’ve read by Denise Hunter, the plot, message, and characters followed suit.

Sweetbriar Cottage is a heartbreaking and powerful story. If you’re looking for a fluff story, this isn’t for you. The relationship and growth between Noah and Josie has depth and pain and will pull you through many emotions.

I love how the characters are flawed and real. Nothing feels contrived. The spiritual aspect gives them an authentic, full feel that makes it easy to relate and sympathize with them.

Ms. Hunter is a talented author and I recommend any of her books. This one is one of her best.

5 Stars

Cover: LOVE
Title: LOVE
Pages: 320
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
ISBN: 978-0718090487
First Line: There was nothing like a letter from the IRS to stop a man in his tracks.
I received a complimentary copy from NetGalley and BookLook.

June 11, 2017

True to You

She was capable and scholarly and disinclined to gamble ever again on romance. Yet, something in John called out to something in her. It was unexplainable. Foolhardy, even. ~excerpt

True to You is INDUBITABLY good! Oh, how I love this story. I’m so happy this is part of a series, because I’ll be able to revisit these incredibly easy-to-love characters I’ve become enamored with.

Becky Wade is an absurdly talented storyteller. She flavors her books with perfect measures of faith, humor, and romance. She is climbing so high on my list of favorite authors that she risks altitude sickness.

One of the greatest features of this book is its uniqueness. I’ve never read a story that battles the same struggles and obstacles as this one does. True to You is unpredictable, endearing, and extraordinarily memorable. (Try as I might, I can’t seem to keep the adverbs from this review. Saying it’s good, unique, and memorable just doesn’t do it justice. So I’m peppering it with LY words because I just can’t help myself.)

Nora Bradford is quirky, funny, and genuine. I sunk into her life with ease, and fell in love with her privately owned historical village. I adore her personality, her vocabulary, and the way she relates to others. Her sisters are a hoot, and I even grew to enjoy her irritable grandmother.

John Lawson is the perfect hero. He’s gentlemanly, strong, and everything else yummy. He’s the type of fictional hero that makes you forget all other fictional heroes. Seriously, I can’t think of another male lead in a book that compares. He has his flaws, he has his limits, and he has rough days ahead, but all those things make him even more desirable and praiseworthy.

This book is one of THOSE books. You know, one of those that pulls you in, drags you through the dirt, wrings the tears out of you, and makes you giggle and swoon. It’s also one that makes you sigh as you read the final page, and has you counting the days until the next book in the series is released.

5 Indubitable Stars!

Cover: Love
Title: Love
Pages: 384
Series: A Bradford Sisters Romance Book 1
Publisher: Bethany House
ISBN: 978-0764219368
First Line: Finding oneself at the mercy of a crazed gunman isn’t all fun and games.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House and NetGalley.

June 2, 2017

Women Who Move Mountains

 "Removing barriers between us and God improves our prayer lives. That’s what this book will do for you!" ~Excerpt

What a joy to find a book that heightens your awareness, builds your faith, and helps you discover the ways to move the mountains along your way. This sounds like a bold statement to make about a book, but it has inspired me and empowered me in my daily walk.

Women Who Move Mountains provides examples of Biblical women who have prayed away the “mountains” in their lives. It also shows the reader how to use the same principles in her own life. Prayer transforms all aspects of our daily walk—our thoughts, our actions, and how we affect others.

The book not only provides valuable guidance, but also asks stimulating questions (group discussions) journaling prompts, and a 21-day study guide to help you make a spiritual breakthrough.

5 Stars

Cover: Okay
Title: Like
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 256
ISBN: 978-0764219146
First Lines (introduction): Every journey has a beginning. The starting point of prayer is God. Like a father who waits to hear every detail of your life, He waits for you.

Thank you, Bethany House and NetGalley, for my complimentary copy.

Just Look Up

 "Just breathe. Part of her, she supposed, would always feel like a fraud." ~Excerpt

Lane Kelley is very different from me, but I was still able to relate to her. Perhaps it’s because I know people who are similar to her, or, most likely, it’s because the author is talented. ;)

Just Look Up delivers engaging characters, sweet romance, and a powerful message. We often have our heads dug into our work, burdens, past, etc.—you name it. And in doing so, we miss out on the good stuff.

Lane has a bumpy past with her family. They don’t really understand her and she works hard (literally and figuratively) at proving she’s overcome her wounds of the past. Her relationship with Ryan Brooks is delivered in a wonderfully intricate way that kept me turning the pages.

This is a touching read with a heart-pricking message we can all learn from. Look up, or you’ll miss the blessings in life. (And what gorgeous cover art!)

5 Stars

Cover: Love
Title: Love
Publisher: Tyndale House
Pages: 416
ISBN: 978-1496421487
First Lines: Just Breathe. Lane Kelley rested her hand on her knee, willing it to stop bouncing.

Thank you, Tyndale & NetGalley, for my complimentary copy.

May 26, 2017

My Heart Belongs on Mackinac Island: Maude's Mooring

My Heart Belongs on Mackinac Island: Maude’s Mooring is another book in the My Heart Belongs series. I’ve read several in this series, and I’ve enjoyed each one. Each book works as a standalone, a fast read, full of twists, and a satisfying read.

This story takes place in Mackinac Island, Michigan in the late 1800s. The author paints a lovely scene and made me want to visit.

The characters are interesting, though I find some things from the late 1800s so frustrating. Not in the writing sense, but in the way women were treated in general. Lol Example: Maude’s father won’t allow her to run the family inn without a husband helping her, so she must prove herself able to be independent. Creates a nice backdrop for this story.

One thing that kind of surprised me (not in a great way) was how quickly Maude’s relationship happens. I wish there was more of a build up. Other than that aspect, the story was enjoyable.

4 Stars

Cover: Okay
Title: Like
Pages: 256
Publisher: Barbour Books
First Lines: Maude Welling’s twelve-year-old brother, Jack, raced across the waxed wood floor of the soda shop, straight toward her, then skidded to a halt.
I received a complimentary copy from NetGalley.