Today’s Topic: Books I Enjoyed That Are Outside of My Comfort Zone
Hosted by: That Artsy Reader Girl
Hmm…it’s not often that I wander outside of my preferred genres or reading comfort zones. So I tweaked this week’s prompt a bit. Instead I’m sharing books that I took a chance on.
Basically, these are books that I didn’t know much about. Books I chose because I fell in love with the cover or maybe the back blurb caught my interest. Generally, they are by authors I’d never read before or I had not read any reviews about them prior to picking them up.
My choices for this Top Ten are recent reads that I really enjoyed. No sense including those that were a bust, right? Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday – Books I Took a Chance On”
Famously beautiful model Willow Bradford is taking a temporary break from her hectic schedule to work as the innkeeper at her family’s small-town bed-and-breakfast. She was enjoying the peace of her hometown, Merryweather, Washington, right up until she came face-to-face with Corbin Stewart, the man she loves to hate. A thoughtful rule-follower by nature, Willow threw caution to the wind four years ago when she entrusted her heart to Corbin–and suffered the consequences when it all fell apart.
Former NFL quarterback Corbin is forceful, charming, and accustomed to getting what he wants . . . except where Willow Bradford is concerned. Unable to forget her, he’s never stopped regretting what happened between them. When their paths unexpectedly cross again, he’s determined to make her give him a second chance.
When a decades-old missing persons case finds Corbin and Willow working together, they’re forced to confront their past and who they’ve become–and whether they can risk falling for one another all over again. Continue reading “Book Review – Falling for You”
Today’s Topic: Thanksgiving/Thankful Freebie
Hosted by: That Artsy Reader Girl
When working on this week’s post, I originally went a different direction. But then I thought, why not keep it simple? So today’s list features the books I’m thankful for and why I appreciate them.
Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Books I’m Thankful For”
No one is happy about beauty queen Brooke Landgon’s return to Hope Canyon, Arkansas, least of all Brooke herself. Not her old friend Holly Christian, nor Holly’s friend Hunter Pierce, and definitely not Brooke’s first love Gatlin Moore. But after her marriage fails and her grandmother dies leaving Brooke her house, return she does. Brooke has a lot of fences to mend in Hope Canyon, but she would rather hole up at her grandmother’s house and ignore everyone. But that’s almost impossible in a town this small.
Holly is dealing with her own wish to hide after her fiance dies without telling anyone he had broken up with her. She just can’t tell the truth about the town’s golden boy without hurting everyone. So she strikes an odd bargain with her estranged childhood friend. She will give Brooke a place to stay and help Brooke while she fixes up her grandmother’s house if Brooke will act as a buffer for all the well-wishing citizens of Hope Canyon.
But these two ladies are as different as chalk and cheese. Not to mention, there are two men harboring some long-simmering feeling towards these two opposites. Hunter has always been in love with Holly, but was the third wheel in a lopsided friendship with Holly and her fiance Chad. While Gatlin is still boiling mad at Brooke’s abandonment of him years ago.
It’s amazing what the return of a prodigal can stir up in one small town. Change is on the horizon for four people who have forgotten how tight the past can tie people together. Continue reading “Book Review -Written in the Stars & Written in the Dust Duology”
“Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come.” -Anne Lamott
Where Hope Begins is the story of grace in the midst of brokenness, pointing us to the miracles that await when we look beyond our own expectations.
Still reeling from a family tragedy years before, Savanna Barrington is just barely holding it together. When her husband leaves her for another woman, she runs away to the solace of her family’s home in the Berkshires to lick her wounds. Though angry, she must hold it together while she acts as the mediator for her children and her family with the husband who betrayed her. But Savanna feels as barren as the winter snow outside her front door.
Then she meets her next door neighbors, the elderly but spunky Clarice, her reclusive nephew Brock and his daughter Maysie. These three invade her solitude and provide her with solace in their own ways. Maysie with her childlike faith and laughter, Clarice with her mature faith and offer to tend a dead garden and Brock with his appreciation and attraction to Savanna.
But running away only offers a temporary reprieve. Savannah must eventually face the problems which led not only to the breakdown of her marriage but also to the breakdown of her family. Continue reading “Book Review -Where Hope Begins”
Megan Jacobs always wished for a different heart. Her entire childhood was spent in and out of hospitals, sitting on the sidelines while her twin sister Crystal played all the sports, got all the guys, and had all the fun. But even a heart transplant three years ago wasn’t enough to propel Megan’s life forward. She’s still working as a library aide in her small Minnesota hometown and living with her parents, dreaming of the adventure she plans to take “once she’s well enough.” Meanwhile, her sister is a successful architect with a handsome husband and the perfect life—or so Megan thinks.
When her heart donor’s parents give Megan their teenage daughter’s journal—complete with an unfulfilled bucket list—Megan connects with the girl she meets between the pages and is inspired to venture out and check off each item. Caleb—a friend from her years in and out of the hospital—reenters her life and pushes her to find the courage to take the leap and begin her journey. She’s thrown for a loop when Crystal offers to join her for reasons of her own, but she welcomes the company and the opportunity to mend their tenuous relationship.
As Megan and Crystal check items off the bucket list, Megan fights the fears that have been instilled in her after a lifetime of illness. She must choose between safety and adventure and learn to embrace the heart she’s been given so that she can finally share it with the people she loves most. Continue reading “Book Review -The Heart Between Us”
Chloe Daschle is the child of Hollywood royalty, but that hasn’t helped her in her quest to shed her image as the onscreen death queen. Chloe longs to break her typecasting and land a role in which she lives. When she reads a screenplay based on a love letter between real life Revolutionary era inhabitants Esther Longfellow and Hamilton Lightfoot, she is convinced she has finally found that part.
Jesse Gates is a mathematical genius, turned actor, turned screenwriter. Running from past tragedy, his big break arrives in the form of his first screenplay about his ancestor Hamilton Lightfoot. An even bigger break arrives when he meets Chloe and they are both cast in the film based on his screenplay. But Chloe is still wrestling with her past shame and an inferiority complex. And Jesse is still unable to forgive his own part in the death of someone he once loved.
In another century, Esther and Hamilton dwell amidst war in South Carolina. Esther has always loved Hamilton, but her father is an agent of the British crown. And Hamilton’s family support the Patriot cause. Just as Hamilton is ready to admit his love and claim Esther, personal tragedy drives them even further apart and Hamilton joins the fight against the British. Even still in the midst of conflict, he pens a letter declaring his love for Esther.
Centuries apart four people yearn for love, but wrestle with external circumstances and internal battles which keep them apart. Continue reading “Book Review -The Love Letter”
Nine years to win her. Three years to love her. And one decision that destroyed it all.
April Duncan was raised with three clear truths: the family name is absolute, ambition and success rule over every emotion, and love always comes with strings attached. Image was everything in her carefully crafted world… until the mirror cracked.
Sean Taylor was April’s best friend, the one man who taught her it was okay to let her guard down and to rely on someone. She trusted him. She loved him. Which made his deception the darkest kind of cruelty.
Now, nearly a year later, she’s ready to leave her failed engagement in the past and get back her life and her estranged family, even if it means dating a man solely for his connections. She’ll never again choose love over loyalty.
Sean has spent his entire life breaking barriers, facing challenges, and never giving up. Until one impossible choice destroyed his future and left him no option but to flee from the woman who annihilated his heart.
Now he’s back in Bentwood and determined to make her hear the truth and rebuild the trust he shattered. But April has become a mere shell of the woman who claimed his heart long ago.
Winning her back is more than just seizing a victory, because if he fails… the girl he’s loved for a lifetime will disappear forever. Continue reading “Book Review: The Truth Between Us”
When Josie Jensen, an awkward 13-year-old musical prodigy crashes headlong into new-comer Samuel Yazzie, an 18-year-old Navajo boy full of anger and confusion, an unlikely friendship blooms. Josie teaches Samuel about words, music and friendship, and along the way finds a kindred spirit. Upon graduation, Samuel abandons the sleepy, small town in search of a future and a life, leaving his young friend behind. Many years go by and Samuel returns, finding Josie in need of the very things she offered him years before. Their roles reversed, Samuel teaches Josie about life, love, and letting go. Deeply romantic and poignant, Running Barefoot is the story of a small town girl and a Native American boy, the ties that bind them to their homes and families, and the love that gives them wings. Continue reading “Book Review -Running Barefoot”
After her seemingly perfect life falls apart, Sarah Hollenbeck reinvents herself as a successful author of steamy romance novels. At the height of her fame, Sarah becomes a Christian. Determined to leave her old life behind completely, she experiences culture shock as she throws herself into a new lifestyle.
But her old identity isn’t so easy to leave behind. Her fans and her publisher are clamoring for a new release. Meanwhile, Sarah’s past is one she tries to keep quiet at her new church, especially when she begins dating her pastor. Sarah is sincere in her desire for a complete personal transformation. But navigating the expectations, demands and privacy concerns of her new life presents a challenge. Continue reading “Book Review -The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck”