Top Ten Tuesday -Hating on the Classics

Hosted by: The Broke and the Bookish

Today’s Topic : Ten Books I Struggled to Get Into But Ended Up Loving or Ten Books That Were A Chore To Get Through or Ten Books I’ve Most Recently Put DownSo, as usual I have interpreted today’s prompt to suit myself.  There are very few books that I don’t end up finishing. I hate giving up on a story even when it doesn’t resonate with me. Plus, I always want to promote good stories and authors. I have no desire to draw negative attention to books I don’t enjoy, because one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, right?

In pondering this week’s topic, I finally decided to highlight a genre which I don’t particularly love. I totally understand the need and value of the classics, but for the most part, I find them dull, overly wordy, depressing and just boring. In my opinion, real life gives enough hard knock lessons without needing them preached to me by my entertainment choices. I can and do appreciate stories of tragedy, but overall I prefer those which promote encouraging messages and hope. And I love a happy ending, so sue me. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Hating on the Classics”

Book Review -My Unexpected Hope

SUMMARY

A year after her divorce is finalized Laila Richardson is finally ready to move on from her ex and her past. She is dating a new man, is looking to quit her long term bartending job and move away from her home town. But when her childhood sweetheart hears of her plans, he returns to town, determined to salvage their marriage.

Chad Richardson has loved Laila his whole life. He only left because he realized his drug addicted lifestyle was putting her in danger. But now, he’s been clean for several months and he’s willing to do anything to prove to Laila that he still loves her.

But their shared past is just as much a hindrance to their future as Laila’s broken trust in Chad. Has he really changed? Can her heart be mended enough to give him a second chance? Continue reading “Book Review -My Unexpected Hope”

Book Review – Then There Was You

sUMMARY

Paige McAllister has simply been existing since a tragedy which claimed her brother’s life. When she finally becomes aware of this fact, she turns her life upside down. Paige breaks up with her boyfriend, quits her job and moves halfway across the world to Sydney, Australia. She hopes that major change will be a catalyst for a better quality of life.

Josh Tyler has two unfortunate run-ins with this American stranger on his way back home after a long worship concert tour. His parents just happen to pastor one of the largest churches in Australia. He has learned to be cautious thanks to his family’s prominence. When his mother hires Paige to be the temporary event coordinator for the church, Josh is predisposed to distrust Paige despite the attraction he fights towards her.

When Josh and Paige are force to work together, neither one is happy about it. Their judgments about each other are colored by their own past traumas. Will they be able to overcome not only their prejudices, but their pasts which still haunt them? Continue reading “Book Review – Then There Was You”

Top Ten Tuesday -Back to School with History

Well, it’s that time of year when all the children and educators head back to school. This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is a back to school freebie.

I will confess, I’m a bit of a nerd. I always enjoyed learning in the classroom. My favorite subject was history and I was often chided for reading ahead in my textbook. Many of my friends complained that history was dull, full of names and dates which meant very little to them. To counter that opinion I am sharing my favorite novels set during various times with stories that make make history come alive. For more information on the titles, clicking on each link will give you a description of the story. Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday -Back to School with History”

Behind the Persona -Three Books About the Man Named Cary Grant

I have been a faithful fan of Cary Grant the actor for over twenty years. In that time I have read every book I could find about him to learn more about the man behind one of the most famous personas in cinematic history.

I have always been interested in biographies. I have read  biographies about many of my favorite film  stars. Over time, I have realized that I prefer the ones that focus on the individual’s personal background. While it is always interesting to learn about an actor’s career, who he worked with, why he chose certain projects, etc. I prefer it when those facts don’t overwhelm their actual story.

So, having done all the work of reading numerous books about Cary Grant, I am now sharing with you my three of my favorites.

Continue reading “Behind the Persona -Three Books About the Man Named Cary Grant”

Top Ten Tuesday -Book Recommendations for Arm Chair Travelers

Aside from reading one of my grand passions in life is travel. I love exploring other countries and cultures. However, in the last several years I haven’t been able to travel as much as I would like for various reasons. Luckily for me, I can still experience the world through my arm chair travels and so can you.

For today’s theme from The Broke and The Bookish  I’ve chosen books which feature settings from around the world. I’ve tried to feature more contemporary than historical books, to mimic what the current geography and culture of these countries would be if you were physically there. But since historical fiction is my jam, some of those titles have slipped in. Click on the title for more information on each story.

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Book Review -The Bridge

SUMMARY

In The Bridge when Meredith Sullivan wins the Beckett Scholarship and is finally able to fulfill her dream of studying in Paris, she is thrilled. But she is less thrilled to discover her class nemesis Pete Russell has also won a place and will be around to torment her all year. She is also sad to leave behind her best friend and secret crush Drew Sutton.

Pete is not content with their status quo. He quickly begins to challenge Meredith’s perceptions of him as they discover Paris together. Slowly Sully (as Pete calls her) realizes she may have misjudged this guy who shares her love for the City of Light.

But just as she begins to consider something more than friendship, Drew finally confesses his feelings for her. Now she is torn between the man she has always wanted and the one who seems to understand her better than anyone else.

You’ve read the summary, now read my review over at The Silver Petticoat.

Book Review -The Mark of the King

SUMMARY

The year is 1720. In Mark of the King French midwife Julianne finds herself unjustly convicted of murder. Branded and married off to a fellow convict, she is shipped off to the primitive French outpost of New Orleans, where a delicate balance exists between the natives and the settlers.

One ray of hope in her exile is Julianne’s hope of finding her brother, a soldier who had been sent with the army to New Orleans. Another silver lining is the French military officer Marc-Paul who takes a special interest in making sure she is protected in a colony where she is marked as a criminal.

But conditions in New Orleans are difficult at best. Tensions run high with the threat of starvation and war ever present.  Will Julianne find the answers she seek? Will she ever overcome the king’s brand marking her as a criminal?

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Book Review – High as the Heavens

SUMMARY

In High as the Heavens Evelyn March has endured her fair share of tragedy. She’s lost much of her family, including her husband during WWI.  Eve is also a survivor with terrible secrets that cripple her with guilt as she goes about her job as a British nurse working with the Red Cross in the enemy occupied territory of Brussels. But Eve is not all that she seems. At night she carries out high risk missions for the Belgian underground resistance to assist the Allies in defeating the German occupiers.

British pilot Simon Forrester is on his way to meet with a contact of the resistance when his plane crashes and he is injured. Eve is stunned to recognize a familiar face from home and makes it her mission to care for and protect this link to her past at great risk to herself. But Eve is also determined to protect her own secrets as Simon begins to dig into memories which have left her shattered. At the same time Eve and Simon must work together to expose a deadly double agent within their ranks while both of them also continue in their own private side missions.

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Top Ten Tuesday -My Favorite Book Heroes

The ladies at The Broke and the Bookish who generally host Top Ten Tuesday are on a summer hiatus. So, I came up with my own topic this week. And since, it’s my choice, I decided not to stick to just ten. Today, you’re in luck because I’m sharing my very favorite book heroes with you.

I have also tried to include the author’s inspiration for each of these heroes. Where that information is not available, I’ve added the images brought to my mind when reading about these heroes.

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