Top Ten Tuesday – My Favorite Reads of 2017

I was excited about this week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt from The Broke and the Bookish to list my favorite books so far of 2017. While not every book on my list may be the best I’ve read this year, they are all favorites of mine. To be included as a favorite either means I really loved book or the story has stuck with me long after I finished it. Several of these I have already reviewed on my website.

Gilt Hollow by Lorie Langdon

I got a late start in reading YA fiction, but if the stories are all as well written as this one, it may become one of my favorite genres. This mystery had gothic undertones, with the male lead returning for revenge, and a quirky yet judgmental town determined to keep its’ secrets hidden. Read my review.

Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh

I won’t lie. I chose this dark historical fairy tale based on its’ cover. But the story of a young girl who is ostracized by a town who doesn’t believe her and the mystery of the disappearances of town members held my interest. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday – My Favorite Reads of 2017”

Top Ten Tuesday – Series to Start & Finish

Don’t you love a good series? It means that even when you finish a great story, you know it will continue with familiar characters you’ve grown to love.

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt regards book series. It is supposed to be a list of series that I haven’t started yet, but I also decided to include some series I have started but haven’t finished.

SERIES TO START

Elite Guardians by Lynette Eason

Although i enjoy romantic suspense it is not my go-to genre. But I keep reading amazing reviews and recommendations for this series and it has me intriuged. With a focus on a female bodyguard agency and comparisons to author Dani Pettrey (whose books I love) I think I will enjoy this one.

The Jacobite Chronicles by Julia Brannan

Although I read tons of historical fiction, I don’t often find a series set during the years of the Jacobite rebellion. Although I have yet to read a book by this author, with the first title Mask of Duplicity currently free on Kindle I have no excuse not to check it out. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday – Series to Start & Finish”

Book Review – Gilt Hollow

SUMMARY

Shortly after the death of her father, Willow Lamott also loses her lifetime best friend Ashton Keller. Although Ashton has been convicted as a killer and locked up in juvie for four years, Willow continues to stand by him and defend him to a town which is eager to believe the worst of their founder’s grandson.

When Ashton is released early, he returns to Gilt Hollow determined to prove his innocence and exact revenge if not justice. Ashton, who was convicted on the testimony of former friends, believes he has been abandoned by everyone who loved him including his best friend Willow and treats her with contempt. Willow resents and is angered by his attitude towards her, wondering if she has been wrong about her faith in Ashton all along.

Ashton’s quest for vengeance and Willow’s weakness for the boy she grew up loving, eventually draws them together in a reluctant partnership to find out the truth of the night that ruined both their lives.

REVIEW

I’ll be honest. I chose to read Gilt Hollow because the cover grabbed my attention and wouldn’t let go. Although, the Young Adult genre is one I am slowly exploring and learning to love, it is not generally my first choice for reading material. This book also fits well within the genre of romantic suspense which I delve into occasionally, but not often. Continue reading “Book Review – Gilt Hollow”

Top Ten Tuesday -Ten Great Father Figures in Books

It’s time for another Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Today’s theme is a Father’s Day related freebie.

I have been blessed to have loving, supportive men in my family, including my dad, grandpa, uncles and cousins. So in honor of the wonderful men in my life and Father’s Day, I am sharing ten of my favorite fathers and father figures from stories I have read.

FATHERS

Major Reginald Aubrey & Stone Thrower of The Pathfinder’s Series

These two fathers broke my heart. They are bound together by the reckless act Major Aubrey commits when he steals the infant son of Stone Thrower and passes him off as his own. Aubrey loves his adopted son as his own but is tortured by his awful secret. Indian warrior Stone Thrower wrestles with rage, bitterness and unforgiveness and longs to be reunited with the son he never met. Both are fathers with heavy burdens that do not lessen as years pass. When Stone Thrower’s other son forms a connection with Aubrey’s adopted daughter everyone all their secrets are brought to light. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Ten Great Father Figures in Books”

Author Spotlight -Amy Leigh Simpson

I love discovering authors who I’ve never read before. If they happen to be indie publishing their debut novel then I feel like I’ve hit the jackpot.

Amy Leigh Simpson was such a discovery for me. I can’t even remember how I first found her, but after reading her first title I knew I had found an author who would have a permanent place on my auto-buy list.

Simpson writes adrenaline pumping, heart rate raising, romantic suspense stories. I can’t determine which element is the most intense and surprising, the romance or the suspense. If you are one who usually guesses the villain in a mystery, you will find it isn’t so easy in Simpson’s novels. And if you like a clean but passionate romance then you won’t be disappointed.

She currently has two books published and a third one in the works for her Girl Next Door series. Learn more about this author at her Amazon author page or her Facebook author page. Continue reading “Author Spotlight -Amy Leigh Simpson”

Book Review -From Sand and Ash

SUMMARY

When young Angelo’s mother dies, his father sends him to live with his grandparents in Italy who are employed by a wealthy Jewish businessman. Still grieving, Angelo is befriended by the precocious daughter of the house, Eva Roselli. Eva and Angelo grow up together much like a brother and sister, but they both know the feelings between them run deeper. However, Angelo is determined to be a priest and Eva is set on a path to be an accomplished violinist, so despite occasionally betraying their feelings for one another, they each pursue their chosen vocations.

Everything changes when WWII breaks out and Italy allies itself with Germany. Angelo’s duty to God and the priesthood are challenged by his mission to keep not only his beloved Eva safe, but also their shared loved ones. Things only become more complicated when they both get involved in the Italian underground working to save and rescue Italy’s Jewish population. Continue reading “Book Review -From Sand and Ash”

Top Ten Tuesday -Books to Look Forward To

I’ve never been much of a list maker, but I am really enjoying the Top Ten Tuesday prompts shared by The Broke and the Bookish.

Some of the prompts are easier than others. Today’s list of the Most Anticipated Books of the Last Half of this Year is one of the easier ones. In fact, the only hard part about it was paring my list down to ten….okay eleven.

1. Bread of Angels by Tessa Afshar

I’m a fan of this Iranian born author who writes about Biblical characters. This one is about Lydia who is briefly mentioned in the New Testament. I can’t wait to see how Afshar fleshes out her story.

2. High as the Heavens by Kate Breslin

Breslin wrote one of my favorite novels ever (For Such a Time), so I’m excited to read her third novel set during WWI which is not a time often covered in novels. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Books to Look Forward To”

Top Ten Tuesday -Summer Titles

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt with The Broke and the Bookish is a summer reads freebie, so the list can be anything related to summer. 

I decided to list ten books I’ve read which have Summer in their titles.

1. Just One Summer

A YA anthology by some of my favorite indie authors, it tells the stories of four best friends. A quick and easy but well-written read.

2. Second Chance Summer

Author Morgan Matson is a bit of a wunderkind in YA fiction. I love how her young characters are forced to deal with adult issues and this story of a teenage girl watching her father die is no exception. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Summer Titles”

Top Ten Tuesday -Book Mothers

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt from The Broke and the Bookish is a Mother’s Day freebie.

The impact of a good mother and the way they enrich our lives is impossible to measure. Their sacrifice, love, compassion, nurturing heart, strength and commitment is what creates a beautiful future for the world through the children they raise. Mothers are true super heroes deserving of all the love and gratitude they receive.

I realized as I was going through my books, that the majority of them do not feature or mention mothers. If they do, it is as a very small supporting character. So today, my top ten is a list of book characters who could benefit from a good mother, whose lives would have been different with a mother’s love. Sometimes, the only way to measure the value of something is by the lack of it.

1. Raleigh Harmon of the Raleigh Harmon Mysteries

Although Raleigh had a loving understanding relationship with her father, it was cut short. Unfortunately this forensic geologist has never had a strong connection with her mother. This fragile relationship has only become worse as her mother’s mental health has deteriorated and Raleigh has been forced to put her in a mental hospital. She continues to reach out to her mother despite it all, but Raleigh has suffered the ache of the lack of understanding between them.

Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Book Mothers”

Book Review -A Moonbow Night

SUMMARY

Tempe Tucker is still reeling from a devastating event which led to the death of her fiance and the crippling of her brother. Thanks to a separate incident her father is wanted for the murder of a land surveyor and remains in hiding.

Into this fractured life walks Sion Morgan, another land surveyor from the same company as the man her father murdered. He arrives with his crew at the Tucker family’s Moonbow Inn along the banks of the Cumberland river, in the Indian territory of Kentucke.

Morgan is in need of an experienced guide to lead his crew through uncharted territory and Tempe has the knowledge and skills to do so.  Initially, she refuses, but at her father’s insistence Tempe is soon leading this group of men into the wilderness to chart the land, create maps for future settlers and also lead them away from her father.

However, the eastern states are at war with Britain for their freedom and Kentucke is still a dangerous place for white settlers and surveyors whom the Indians deem as a threat to their way of life. Continue reading “Book Review -A Moonbow Night”