Adult Fiction · Book Review · FIction · Historical Fiction

Don’t Put the Boats Away

This month I was chosen to be part of a Suzy Approved Book Tour for Don’t Put the Boats Away by Ames Sheldon.

Synopsis

World War II has just ended and the world is beginning to put itself back together. In the Sutton Family, they are reeling at the sudden loss of their son/brother Eddie. This book follows the family for the next 25 years as they deal with the sudden loss of Eddie. Daughter Harriet goes to school to become a chemist. Son Nat wants nothing more to be a jazz musician. Father George is stuck in his ways and struggles to accept the choices that his son and daughter are making. Mother Eleanor blames herself for her son’s death because she never told him the horrors that she saw while serving during the Great War. She thinks if she had told him maybe he would not have enlisted and now he would not be dead. Watch as each member of the family struggles, succeeds, and begins to put their lives together one year at a time.

Review

I have said it before on this blog, but I tend to stay away from historical fiction. I often struggle to completely understand what the book is talking about as history was never my strong suit in school. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed learning about the history of the United States, its just that all the details didn’t stick and I often confuse one war with another. Thank being said, this book was wonderful! Ames Sheldon has a way of writing that brings you into the story and makes you feel like you are really there. The writing wraps you in the warmth of the story and makes you fall “in like” with each of the characters and the story of their life.

In addition, imagine my surprise upon starting the story and finding out Harriett was attending school at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. I live in Wisconsin and have also lived in Madison. All the details that Ames Sheldon provided of the city I could imagine and have been to many of them. This detail really made the story connect to my heart.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I enjoyed all the details of post-war times that were provided and woven into the story. Theses details made you feel like you were part of the story and that you were going through what each of the characters were going through. Ames Sheldon has a way of pulling you in on page one and keeps you turning each page until the very end. I will definitely be picking up Ames Sheldon’s other book, Eleanor’s War!!!

I think I have to stop saying that I don’t read historical fiction!!! 🙂

Rating

Adult Fiction · Book Review · FIction · Historical Fiction · Mystery

The Six-Week Solution

For this book, I had the pleasure of partnering with the Cozy Mystery Review Crew to review the book “The Six-Week Solution” by Paula Darnell. This was my first time working with this group and I have to say, they were fantastic and will for sure be working with them again!!!

Synopsis

Reno, Nevada – a place where people can come get a quickie divorce in 1955 by moving there for just six-weeks. By moving to a ranch in Reno and establishing residency by living there for six-weeks, well-to-do women are granted a quickie divorce for a variety of reasons.

Enter the Circle E Ranch run by Carol and Chuck Ellis. One nigh a guest of the ranch dies unexpectedly when her Cadillac suddenly runs off the Mount Rose Highway, a road that travels between Reno and Lake Tahoe. Deputy Sheriff Ben Cameron is assigned to investigate the accident. As Ben is investigating the accident, which leads to more questions than answers, he meets Mary who has just moved into the Circle E ranch from New York. While spending time questioning the ranch’s guests, Ben finds out that Mary has been involved in an accident, while shopping in Reno with another one of the guests at the Circe E Ranch. Mary brushes the accident off as just that – an accident. However, when Mary has a second accident, so close to the first, Ben quickly determines someone is out to get her.

What happened to cause the guest at the Circle E Ranch to drive off the cliff?

Who is targeting Mary and will she be alive long enough to get her divorce?

Ben must figure out the answers to these questions as well as many others in order to solve these cases before someone else dies. Will he be able to do it in time? Read The Six-Week Solution by Paula Darnell to find out!! 

Review

While I don’t usually read historical fiction, the synopsis intrigued me enough to bring me out of my comfort zone to read this book, and I was glad that I did. I had never heard of the six-week solution before reading this book, and was surprised to learn that hundreds of thousands of people came to Nevada to get a divorce in the 1900’s. While I learned this fact after reading the book, the book did a really great job in cluing me into what the six-week solution actually was, without having to do any research outside of reading the book. I felt that the author included facts in a way that were part of the story-line and you did not feel like you were reading a history book, but you still knew what was going on in history at this time. This was a great aspect of Paula Darnell‘s writing.

Throughout the book, I sometimes felt a slight struggle to continue reading, as I felt the story became slower paced, however Paula Darnell then through me a curveball that kept me reading to find out what was going to happen to Mary and why the black Cadillac drove off the Mount Rose Highway. While there were two separate mysteries going on, Paula Darnell did a great job separating them, while at the same time weaving them together. In addition, when I thought I had figured out each of the mysteries, Paula Darnell through a curveball that put me back at square one in figuring out what had happened and “who done it.”

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I am glad that I stepped out of my comfort zone and read historical fiction. This book introduced me to author Paula Darnell and I will for sure be adding her to my list of authors to read!! In fact, I can’t wait to jump into her DIY Diva Mystery Series!

Rating

Adult Fiction · Book Review · Contemporary Romance · FIction · Romance

The Power of Love

This month I had the pleasure of working with Goddess Fish Promotions to review The Power of Love by Kemberlee Shortland. I had never heard of this author, but with the synopsis that I read, I was excited to give this new author a chance!

Synopsis

Meet Elaine and Ethan. They are newly weds, married at Christmas, and their plan is to wait to start a family until they are ready. However, Elaine discovers she is pregnant and is hesitant to tell Ethan as she is not sure how he will react. Ethan however surprises Elaine by accepting the pregnancy and soon to be parenthood with open arms and excitement.

At a prenatal exam, Elaine and Ethan find out devastating news that will change their lives as they know them. Their charmed relationship and lives are about to crash down around them.

With Christmas coming soon and Elaine due to give birth right around that time, will a Christmas wish come true for the couple or will everything they built end up as rubble?

Review

I have to be honest, I was really sad that this was a short story, as I loved the writing style and the story line. Kemberlee Shortland has a writing style that pulls you in at the first page and leaves you wanting more at the last. I immediately felt the emotions that Elaine and Ethan were feeling and found myself pulling for them as a couple as their world crashed around them. The descriptions of the characters and situations the characters were in were written so well that you felt like you where right in the book with them. My only complaint for this book was that it was not long enough and I wanted to know more about what happened to Elaine and Ethan. I can’t wait to explore more of Kemberlee Shortland’s books and get lost in her writing again!!

Excerpt

His strong hand grasped hers and brought it to lips framed with dark stubble, kissing the backs of her fingers. “Please, love. I can barely move.”

Elaine glanced down the solid length of him to the twitch beneath the sheet just covering his hips. “Could have fooled me.”

Leaning over, he propped himself up on an elbow and looked down at her. He nestled her head in the crook of his arm.

“Isn’t it enough you kept me up all night,” winking at the double meaning, “but you want to make me late for work, as well?”

You weren’t complaining an hour ago.”

His lips against hers echoed the passion they had shared through the night.

When he leaned away, his deep voice was soft, his blue-eyed gaze intense. “And I never will, Lany. I love you to the depths of my soul and will always be here for you.”

Tears welled and threatened to spill down her cheeks. “Will you?”

Nodding, he said, “Aye. Always.”

You truly want this baby.” It wasn’t a question. She rubbed her belly without breaking her gaze with him. When he nodded again, his grin answering more than his voice could.

Rating

Giveaway

Kemberlee Shortland will be awarding a House of Tirgearryen t-shirt (Worldwide shipping, except in restricted regions as per An Post) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click HERE to enter this giveaway!!!

Adult Fiction · Book Review · Contemporary Sports Romance · FIction · Romance · Women's Fiction

Cross Crease

This month, I was again a part of a book review tour hosted by Goddess Fish Promotions. They had a number of books this month to choose from to review, and Cross Crease by Elizabeth Hartey sounded great – I mean who doesn’t love a book about hockey that also has a good love story in it. So, I signed up right away and couldn’t wait to dive into this book!!!

Synopsis

Meet Heaven – since the age of 14 she has been in love with hockey goalie Damon Wolfe.

Meet Damon Wolfe – the biggest-off-the-ice player in the NHL and Heaven’s best friend.

But, Heaven has a problem. At the age of 21, all she wants to do is loose her virginity to Damon Wolfe. It seems like the perfect plan to her, only there is one problem…Damon Wolfe doesn’t want to ruin the friendship that he and Heaven have built over the years. All Heaven wants is for Wolfe take her virginity and teach her about sex.

Wolfe, also has a problem. The first time he met Heaven and saw her turquoise eyes, he fell in love with her (when she was 14 and had a mouth full of braces). However, at the time, Heaven was way too young for him and Wolfe was more damaged than he cared to admit to anyone. Now that Heaven is 21, not only is she his best friend, but also Wolfe feels that he needs to protect her…from him!!!

Will Heaven gets what she wants from Wolfe? Will Wolfe give in and allow their friend ship to be ruined? Check out Cross Crease to catch all the action!!!

Review

I love a good romance novel. However, the way this book started out was a bit shocking to me! In the first 3 pages there was talk of Wolfe receiving a blow job in the middle of the living room while Dak (Wolfe’s roommate and Heaven’s older brother) and Heaven were having a conversation on the computer. I defiantly was not expecting this book to be this descriptive in the first 3 pages!!!! Once I got over the shock of how quickly the book incorporated a sexual act, without having much plot line to read and to get to know the characters with, I really began to enjoy the book. Elizabeth Hartey wrote a wonderfully descriptive book of the struggles people can get into with relationships. Throughout the book, you could imagine and feel the anguish that each of the characters were feeling. You felt their sorrow and their joy. And for those wanting to know, yes, there was quite a bit of sexual scenes in the book, however, not so much that it look away from the story line in the book. In fact, the amount that were included, actually mostly added to the story line of the book and the emotions that the character’s were feeling. Overall, this was a good read. I had not read anything by Elizabeth Hartey in the past, and I was glad to have discovered her. I would recommend this book to people who enjoy a good romantic story and those that love hockey.

Rating

Excerpt from Cross Crease…

But with Pippa (aka Heaven), everything’s changed. I want to breathe her in, get to know everything about her. I don’t know how to explain it. She brings something to my life I’ve never had, a luminescence wiping away my dark past.

Believe me, I know how this sounds. A few months ago, if I had heard any other guy spewing this schmaltz, I would’ve hurled my most recent meal and called him a little bitch. Hell, I did call my teammate, Dalt, a vagina back when he was getting all moony-eyed about Nik, and she didn’t want anything to do with him.

Now? Let’s just say I understand his predicament. I want Pippa like I’ve never wanted anything or anybody. Problem is, although Pip claims she’s only looking for a quick deflowering, I know she’s girlfriend material with a capital G.

I. Am. Not. Interested in having a girlfriend, in case you misunderstood my previous confession. Never had one. Never want one. By now, you must see where this is going.

But to be clear, let me reiterate. Pip is a girl and she’s a friend but with a big slash between the two words. She is, in fact, the only girl/friend I’ve ever had. I enjoy hanging out with her like I would any guy friend. Except, in Pip’s case, a small problem has developed. Or should I say, a rather big, hard problem? I don’t drool over any guy friends when they’re walking down the beach. I don’t get hard every time I think about one of them, or dream about pounding balls deep into them. Eww. There’s a thought I’ll never be able to erase from my mind. See my dilemma here? To say the friendship lines have been blurred when it comes to Pip is the understatement to end all understatements.

Giveaway!!!

Click HERE to be entered into a drawing to win a $15 Amazon or Barnes and Nobel gift card from author Elizabeth Hartey!!!

Adult Fiction · Book Review · FIction · Historical Fiction

Summer of ’69

I don’t know about you, but I love a good Elin Hilderbrand book!!! When I hear she had a new book coming out AND it was getting great reviews, I naturally had to have it!!! In addition, I am part of book club, The Bee Hive Book Club, where each member is part of a 12 member team. Each member picks a book for their team and then journals their thoughts in a notebook while reading the book. At the end of the month, the member mails the book and the journal they have to the next member of the group. When 12 months is up, I will get my book back and the journal back with thoughts from 12 different people!!!! Naturally I chose Summer of ’69 for this exchange!!! There is so much packed into this book, and I can wait to see the journal responses from others around the United States! I am so excited!!!

Synopsis

This book, based in 1969, is about the Levin family and what the Summer of 1969 has in store for them. Each summer, the Levin family travels to Nantucket to spend the summer at their grandmother’s, Exalta aka Nonny to the grandchildren, home “All’s Fair.” This summer, however, is nothing like the previous summers that the Levin family has experienced.

Blair, the oldest of the children, is stuck in Boston. Blair is pregnant with twins and her husband, Angus, who is an astrophysicist and is helping NASA with the moon launch, is not home much of the time due to the upcoming mission. Plus, Blair is sure that her husband is having an affair with a woman named Trixie.

Kirby, a student at Simmons College, wants nothing more than her independence. She is all about the civil rights movement and has participated in several protests, some of which have gotten her arrested. This summer however, she wants her freedom and talks her mother and father into letting her take a summer job on Martha’s Vineyard.

Tiger has recently been called up to serve has a soldier had as been deployed to war in Vietnam. Tiger is the light of his mother, Kate’s, eyes and she is devitated when her only son is deployed.

Jessie, the youngest of the family at age 13, is suddenly an “only child” and is forced to go to Nantucket with her mother, Kate, and grandmother, Exalta. She want desperatly to stay home with her father, David, who will come to Nantucket on weekends, but Kate and Nonny will not hear of it.

This story takes a look at each of the siblings lives as well as Kate’s and Nonny’s. Each life is filled with secrets that are spilling over at the brim. Each person wants to keep their secrets to themselves, but at the same time so desperately wants to not be alone in the vast world. Are they willing to spill their secrets to become more cohesive as a family or will they ride out the summer, separate and alone?

This is this first historical novel written by Elin Hilderbrand.

Review

I am generally not one to read historical fiction…it usually is just not my cup of tea. However, as I said I absolutely love Elin Hilderbrand as an author and once again she did not disappoint. This book captivated me from page one. I have to admit that I don’t know a lot about 1969, other than the basics that we are taught in school. However, this book captured me and took me to a place where I could see the events unfolding – it was like I was there, experiencing it with the characters. I felt myself longing with the family that Tiger would come home from the war. I felt myself remembering what is was like to be a 13 year old girl. I reflected on how all we want when we are little is to grow up and be independent in the world. I thought of the secrets that we all have and how we go through an internal struggle as to whether to let those secrets out or to keep them hidden deep down. This book was fantastic in so many ways, from the description of the times and of the characters to the raw emotions that were written about in the book and felt by the reader. I can’t say enough good things about this book. Everyone should have it on their TBR (To Be Read) List!!! I have never been disappointed by an Elin Hilderbrand book, and this one showed me again what an amazing author and storyteller Elin is!!!

Rating

Picture taking bloopers… Doggy Photo bombing the picture!! 🙂
Adult Fiction · Book Review · FIction

The Scent Keeper

Back in March I was invited to be part of a book tour by St. Martin’s Press for the book The Scent Keeper. I have only been on #bookstagram since January and about a month later I started my blog, so I was super excited that St. Martin’s Press reached out to me!!!

Synopsis

Emmeline lives on a remote island with her father. She knows nothing about the outside world except what her father teaches her through the use of scent. On the island, Emmeline lives in a cabin with her father. On one wall of the cabin there are many drawers that line one of the walls with sealed bottles. Her father won’t tell Emmeline about the scents that are held in those bottles in the drawers, nor will he tell her about the machine that creates those scents. As Emmeline grows older, she becomes more and more curious about the bottles and the scents they contain. However, before she can figure out their secret, she is suddenly off the island and in the real world. Thrust in a world she knows nothing about, Emmeline searches for who she really is and what really happened in her past.

Review

I struggled to get into this book. While it was well written, I found it hard to understand the life Emmeline lived on the island with her father. I struggled to make sense of what was going on and the scents that were being talked about. As the book moved forward and Emmeline was thrust into the “real” world and bits and pieces of her past were uncovered, I began to enjoy the story much more and also begin to understand the beginning chapters of the book. Overall, I thought that this was a good book, that for the most part held my attention. I was captured by the story of Emmeline as she struggled to figure out who she is and where she came from. I was also captured by the friends that she met along the way and the impact that each of those friends had on her life. I am glad that I was selected to read this book and look forward to reading other books by Erika Bauermeister.

Book will be Published May 19, 2019

Preorder the book on the following sites: Amazon; Barnes and Nobel; Indiebound

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