Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Kate Neilson's terrible childhood lead her down the road that eventually landed her in the Pennsylvania Penitentiary. While there, she finds the Lord and earns a marketing degree and is offered an internship at a Wyoming Guest Ranch. Desperately wanting a fresh start and to be a truly changed person she heads there with high hopes. But her high hopes are soon crushed when a man from her past finds her and will stop at nothing to get her back. Mike Duncan is trying hard to fill his father's shoes in running the ranch along with his mom. He's not sure about her hiring a new intern but when he meets Kate there is an immediate attraction. But it seems like the trouble their having started when Kate hit town. Will Kate get that fresh new start or will her dark past, she's tried so hard to hide, be brought to light? And will her new found faith be strong enough to carry her through?
What an amazing story of God's redemptive love and the power of His grace! I was totally immersed in the story from beginning to end and loved hanging out at Whispering Pines. Kate Neilson is the total embodiment of God's amazing grace. She was such an encouragement to me. Dymple was one of my favorite characters in the story. Everyone should have a Dymple in their life. She exemplified the love of God in her life. This was a very gritty and realistic story. This author didn't white-wash evil or sin. Yet this story is filled with hope that God can truly change hearts and lives. I love the way the author so naturally blended scripture throughout the story. It really caused me to ponder these truths in my own life. This tale has suspense, humor, romance and something happening on just about every page. It was difficult to put down. One of my favorite parts was toward the end. Although we are treated to a great conclusion, there are a few things left open. Nothing that would drive you crazy, but I am hoping there will be a sequel! This is the first time I've read anything by this author but I will definitely be watching for her next tale to arrive! I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you take a trip to Whispering Pines Guest Ranch. I guarantee it's worth the trip. Great job, Rebecca!
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 609 KB
Publisher: StoneHouse Ink; 1 edition (January 2, 2012)
Monday, February 20, 2012
Anne Stone continues her quest to find her Uncle David. Rob and his wife along with Dan agree to escort Anne to a farm her uncle owns. Dan is determined to see Anne safely through her quest but knows that she's not really interested in a future with him. She plans to return to England with her uncle. But when the journey poses more dangers than expected, Anne begins to see Dan in a different light as he continues to stand by her. Will her changing feelings for him be enough to make her want to remain in America?
Lady Anne's Quest is the second installment in the Prairie Dreams Series and pretty much picks up about two weeks after The Lady's Maid. It was a good story but a bit slow-paced for me. I'm being honest when I say, it was hard for me as a reader to feel the connection between Anne and Dan. There were are few moments but nothing that really made me say they belonged together. I would also have liked a little more of an expanded conclusion. I liked the whole mystery surrounding David Stone and although this book finds some answers there is still something left unsolved for the next installment. It was nice to meet up with some of the folks we met in The Lady's Maid. Overall I enjoyed the story and would recommend it for someone who likes a little more of a historical than a romance. A thank you goes to Barbour Publishing for providing this ARC for my review through Netgalley.
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Barbour Books (April 1, 2012)
Friday, February 17, 2012
Lenore Wakesmith is traveling with her family to a new town when their wagon wheel breaks. Because of her parents physical condition, she sets out to find help on a windy snowy day. When she runs into trouble, she prays for the Lords help. He answers her plea in the form of Heston Miller. Heston helps her and agrees to help her folks, if she in-turn, agrees to marry him to keep him from losing his land. Lenore has always said she would only marry for love. So what will she do?
Although short, this was a great little story. One that you can read quickly while being carried away into the cold, snowy wilderness. But your heart will be warmed from the spark of what could be a budding romance. I enjoyed the setting and almost shivered from the cold of the snow. I enjoyed the characters and thought Lenore's father gave some great advice. If you're looking for a quick romantic fix, then try Love for Lenore.
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 136 KB
Publisher: Hawse Pipe Ministries (February 15, 2012)
Thursday, February 16, 2012
Layla Smith is all alone. She has been in foster care for the past several years but now that she's of age, she is being sent out on her own with no money, no job and no family. Then she witnesses a murder and to keep her safe she is placed into the witness protection program. The Sheriff sends her away from Chicago to his cousin's remote Montana ranch. Cade King was not only handsome but lucky, until one day his luck ran out. An accident changes his life completely and now he's filled with anger and resentment toward his situation. His bitterness is extends to Layla but it seems to roll off her back. Cade thinks she'll pity him but Layla only shows him loving kindness which slowly begins to erode his protective armor. As they get to know each other they slowly begin to let down their guard. There is a connection between them that neither can explain. But danger is close at hand and the killer won't stop until he cleans-up his loose end.
I thoroughly enjoyed Cowboy Down. I have never read anything by this author but was pleasantly surprised to find a good, clean story that will sweep you away to a remote ranch in Montana. I can't remember reading about a hero in Cade's position but I found it very intriguing. It felt to me, that all the emotions Cade experienced rang true. I loved all the interaction between Layla and Cade. Layla was an excellent heroine. Although she had been through so much and though she tried to protect herself from hurt, she still knew how to give love. One thing that I really liked about this story was all the family interaction. The brothers are rugged and interesting to get to know and I can't wait to read the story of each of them. This tale had a nice balance of tender moments, humorous moments, serious moments and tense moments. I enjoyed my time at the King's Ranch and look forward to returning there for Cowboy Lost!
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 335 KB
Publisher: Vanessa Gray Bartal (August 9, 2011)
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Juliana O'Malley goes to the mercantile one morning to gather supplies for her mother's birthday. Imagine her surprise when she realizes that it's being robbed and she is taken hostage by one of the gang. That begins an unforgettable journey through the Smoky Mountains where her captor behaves like a gentlemen and even vows to return her home. Evan Harrison is out to find his brother's killer and that meant joining up with the gang he thinks is responsible. He never expected to take a hostage. Especially one as beautiful and spirited as Juliana. Being with her, seeing her strength and her strong faith, makes him long for things he can never have or can he?
A most excellent story! First let me say that this beautiful cover caught my eye! It made me want to read the story. And let me tell you, from the very first page you become completely immersed in the adventure, right up to it's completely satisfying conclusion. I must say, that the ending was well done because I didn't feel like anything was left unfinished. I really appreciated that. Evan was awesome hero. He was strong and commanding but had such a tender heart. He made me wish I was Juliana! She's not your typical heroine but she was such fun because she was so spirited. She was a good match for Evan. I absolutely loved the nickname he gave her and thought that added an extra spark to the story! This tale was loaded with romantic tension, which I love and the interaction between Evan and Juliana played out through the whole story. I also loved the underlying message that God is in control no matter what's going on in your life. He is not surprised by anything that comes up and that we can trust Him to carry us through. This is Karen Kirst's debut novel but it reads liked a seasoned author. This is book one in the Smoky Mountain Matches Series and I am looking forward to the next installment, The Bridal Swap. If you're looking for a good historical, chock-full of romantic tension together with a great message then look no further. I HIGHLY recommend The Reluctant Outlaw! Great job Karen!!!
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 442 KB
Publisher: Love Inspired Historicals (September 1, 2011)
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Love Inspired (September 6, 2011)
Saturday, February 11, 2012
Carli Williams has a past she's not proud of but determines to make a fresh start for herself. A start that includes not getting involved with men and finding the father she's never known, which leads her into an adventure she may not be ready for. Ethan Durham is working on his engineering degree and waiting for the Lord to show him the woman he's meant to be with. Little does he know that the woman he picked for the photo reenactment of the WWII kissing photo just might be her. But one things for sure, he won't get the chance to find out if he can't stop the attempts made on her life.
This was a great installment to The Ozark Durham Series. It had lots of mystery and surprises along the way as you try to figure out, with Ethan and Carli, the answers to several contemplative questions. I would love to read Carli's brother's story! (hint, hint)! Although this didn't have as much romantic tension as Abandoned Hearts, the chemistry between Ethan and Carli was still great. Ethan, at times, reminded me of his father, which was fun. I was hoping to see Ann and Jacob again but they were only mentioned a few times. Unconditional love and forgiveness was the underlying message which I thought the author did really well. One line that I absolutely loved and highlighted in my Kindle was "...God doesn't bless us to raise our standard of living; He blesses us to raise our standard of giving." That is GREAT truth to remember! If you're looking for a fun story filled with mystery and sweet romance, then I recommend you pick up Unexpected Kiss. Now I am anxiously awaiting "Coveted Bride"!
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 236 KB
Paperback: 234 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace (November 8, 2011)
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
With her aunt and uncle gone, Ann McHaven seeks solace at their house in the country. She decides to explore a back road with her uncles old truck and soon finds herself in trouble. That's when she meets up with a force-of-a-man named Jacob Durham. As the rains fall and the creeks rise he rescues her and brings her back to his cabin where she is forced to stay with him, his kids and his father until the waters recede. Ann's faith and strength are tested as the attraction between them grows strong. On top of dealing with that, there's a cougar out there that they can't seem to catch. When Jacob sets out to find the cougar, once and for all, he realizes he might never get the chance to tell Annie what's in his heart.
LOVED IT, LOVED IT, LOVED IT!!!!! This is definitely going down as an all-time favoite of mine. This author did a fantastic job of executing a story that is loaded with romantic tension, upholds and encourages Biblical morality and wraps it all up in a tale that was impossible to put down. Who can go wrong with that combination!! I totally fell in love with the characters. Ann was so much fun! She is full of spunk and grit but also possess a deep faith. It's that combination that draws you to her. Jacob is definitely a swoon-worthy hero. Strong & stubborn yet tender and I loved his playfulness with Ann. I think one of the most enjoyable things for me was that it wasn't just one or two scenes, but their banter plays-out through the whole story. I loved that! I also appreciated that conflicts were addressed throughout and didn't wait the entire story to be resolved. To me that was most refreshing! Jacob's kids and father will worm their way into your heart with their liveliness. This is the first book I've read by Regina Tittel but she is now a new favorite author of mine. If you enjoy Carie Lawson books then you are sure to enjoy this author's work. Abandoned Hearts comes HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Great job, Regina!!! Can't wait to get started on Unexpected Kiss!
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 324 KB
Paperback: 236 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace (July 31, 2011)
Tuesday, February 7, 2012
India McGuire always knew she'd marry Chase Porter but was devastated when he left without a word. Fast forward ten years. She's been dating David for awhile now and knows that life with David will be predictable and steady. David is a man India feels she can depend on. On the night that they get engaged, Chase shows up at India's house. Seeing him again brings with it all those strong emotional feelings as well. Chase only came home to settle his mother's estate but somehow he just couldn't leave without seeing India one last time. Feelings long buried come to life when he sees her again and finds himself in a battle to win her back. Now India must choose between these two men. She longs to follow through with what her heart is telling her but she's afraid to put her heart as risk again. Will she choose David, who seems predictable and dependable or Chase, the one for whom her heart longs but the one who might just leave her again?
I thoroughly enjoyed This Time for Keeps. It kept me entertained from beginning to end. India was an interesting character and one I liked but she kinda drove me nuts as she continually vacillated between Chase and David. However, I do understand how that situation would throw your life in a tailspin to where you wouldn't know what to do. India didn't want to hurt anyone and I could definitely relate to that. She prays that the Lord would show her what to do. It was interesting to watch Chase and David as they worked to win Indi's heart for keeps. You are kept guessing who she will choose, although I had a inkling of where her heart was. I know who I would have chosen! There was also an interesting twist at the end that I didn't expect, which is always fun, and the ending was totally satisfying and put a smile on my face. If you're looking to get away to a small town with some interesting characters complete with a love triangle then I recommend you try This Time for Keeps.
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 312 KB
Publisher: Desert Breeze Publishing, Inc (October 13, 2011)
Monday, February 6, 2012
Erin Macintyre finds her life turned upside the day her husband, Justin, was killed. The baby she carries will be raised without his father. If that's not enough to deal with, now someone is after her, leaving notes and threatening phone calls but she doesn't know why. P.I. Clay Buchanan returns home after he gets an envelope from Justin with a note to call him. Only thing is, the envelope is four months late in arriving. The first place Clay goes when he arrives home is to Justin's gravesite and he runs into Erin. Clay and Justin were best friends and Clay vows to himself he'll do everything to protect Erin. She's not happy to see him but his feelings for her remain unchanged. Now he has to find a way to convince her that her life is in danger and that she needs to trust him. With few options available to her, Erin reluctantly trusts clay with her life but will she trust him with her heart?
Oh what a tangled web we weave! WOW! This is definitely a story that keeps you on your toes the whole time you're reading it. As I was reading I kept thinking this would make a great episode of "Murder She Wrote" or "Columbo". The tale was very tightly woven and keeps you turning pages to find out what's going to happen next. I must admit that I didn't care for Erin very much in the beginning, but slowly I warmed-up to her as I learned her story. I loved Clay and how he handled things. His quiet faith and steadfastness had an impact on Erin. There was a great cast of supporting characters whom I hope to see again. This author really allowed you to become completely entangled in the lives of these characters and I found myself trying to solve the puzzle right along with them. Slowly but surely the intensity builds as you gather each clue with a few red-herring along the way. Although this story has a climactic ending that is totally satisfying, the door stands open and ready for the next book. I'll be watching for that one! This is Peggy Blann Phifer's debut novel but it sure doesn't read that way. To See The Sun is book 1 in the Desert Faith Series and one I definitely recommend!
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 509 KB
Paperback: 356 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace (January 6, 2012)
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Lucy March is not sure what she's going to do. She's lost her job at the dressmakers and she's being evicted from her home. On top of that she's caring for her younger brother and sister because her their mother (Lucy's step-mother) took off shortly after their father was killed in a buggy accident. Lucy would like to provide a good home for them but she's not sure how she'll do that. The Lord seems to answer her plea by way of Henry Stanton. Henry says he wants to help her but the only way he will is if she agrees to marry his son, Nate, by proxy. After much thought, she reluctantly agrees. Nate is dismayed to find out what his father has done. How could he marry him off without his knowledge and especially to someone who looks so unfit for ranch life. Not only that, but she has younger siblings that are now his responsibility. Slowly but surely though, he begins to see that she's made of tougher stuff then he thought. They are trying to do the right thing but obstacles seem to be popping up everywhere and danger seems to be lurking just around the corner.
This is definitely going down as a favorite of mine. There were so many things I loved about this story. It's easy to read but the storyline is so tightly knit. It seems like there was no extra words anywhere. It all meant something. I really like that! The characters are so full of life and interesting to spend time with. I had so much admiration for Lucy. She inspired me with her courage and determination. Nate was such an awesome guy but a little rough around the edges. Nothing Lucy couldn't fix, of course! The kids are absolute gems. The way the story played out was so realistic and true to life. The slow build between Lucy and Nate is absolute torture but keeps you quickly flipping those pages, right to the very end. I couldn't put it down and when I absolutely had to, I found myself anxious to get back to it. It's got mystery, danger, romance and a great spiritual message about letting God take control. I think this is one of Colleen's best work. Blue Moon Promise is one I highly recommend. A thank you goes to Thomas Nelson who provided me with this complimentary copy through Netgalley for my review. Great job, Colleen!!!
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (February 14, 2012)
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Will McMillian fought in the war along side his Captain, Clayton Proffitt. Now he's a US Marshall fighting the war on crime by working undercover pretending to be a member of the notorious Walton Gang. That's where he meets Miss Jamie Ellis. She's on her way to live with her aunts and perhaps marry a fellow she's been writing to. Plans quickly change when she becomes a hostage after the Walton Gang takes over the train. Knowing what the gang is like and what they are capable of Will vows to protect Jamie no matter what the cost. How high a price is he willing to pay?
WOW! This second installment of the Heart of a Hero Series is an excellent story. This author certainly doesn't sugarcoat the life of a gang in the 1870s. The rough and rugged life they lead is painted in a realistic way. This book felt much darker to me than the first book but I think it's because we are getting a good look into the lives of hardened criminals. A Texan's Honor is actually two stories in one. It's pretty much evenly divided between Will McMillian and Scout Proffitt (whom we heard about in A Texan's Promise, Scout is the brother of Clayton). I thought the way it shifted between the two was very well executed while still maintaining a good flow. This story definitely took me on a train ride of emotion. There were things I found amusing but there were many times I found myself wiping away the tears. There were some tough issues to deal with. The author does a great job of allowing you to get inside of the heads of all the main players. Sometimes private thoughts are not so pretty. Although isn't that reality. But it also allows you to see that many times what you see on the outside is very different from what's on the inside. There was plenty of romantic tension, which I LOVED and the characters were true to life and fully fleshed out! I would not classify this as a 'feel good' story but it is a story where there is hope. It had a completely satisfying ending while leaving the door wide open for Book 3, A Texan's Choice! You could easily read this as a stand-alone story but I highly recommend you start with A Texan's Promise. If you like a gritty, realistic, true-to-life, non-sugarcoated story, then A Texan's Honor is the book for you. I have loved this series so far and can't wait for the third installment! Great job Shelley!!! A thank you goes to Abingdon Press for providing this ARC thru Netgalley for my review.
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Abingdon Press (March 2012)