30 April 2019

When He Found Me | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


Love Discovered . . . Hope Renewed.

Once a strong Christian, third baseman Shane Riley lost his faith the night he injured his knee in a freak car accident. Determined to return to professional baseball and to find the sister he treated badly, Shane retreats to Refuge, Wyoming. There he meets Melissa June “MJ” Townsend, a single mom battling the virus that causes cervical cancer. 

MJ wants nothing to do with the handsome athlete—no doubt a womanizer considering the stories in the news. But when a mistake results in Shane renting her garage apartment, they become friends. That friendship blossoms into something deep and pure, leaving MJ with a painful secret to tell. Even more complicated, she discovers an unexpected tie to Shane’s missing sister—a wounded woman who wants nothing to do with the perfect brother who scorned her.

Release Date: March 18, 2019


29 April 2019

Her Oklahoma Rancher | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


Her ex-fiancé is back—with a baby.
Can they find a second chance at Mercy Ranch?

Paralyzed veteran Eve Vincent has built an independent new life at a ranch for wounded warriors. But when she and her ex-fiancé, Ethan Forester, are named guardians of an orphaned baby girl, they must face down past misunderstandings to make a future for Tori. And caring for the little girl together might just rekindle their love…this time for forever.

Publisher: Love Inspired
Release Date: May 21, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


Brief Chronicle of Another Stupid Heartbreak | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


Has heartbreak broken her for good?

Dumped by her boyfriend the summer after senior year, teen love and relationship columnist Lu Charles has hit a wall with her writing. The words just won’t come to her like they used to and if she doesn’t find a topic for her column, she’ll lose her gig at hip online magazine Misnomer, and the college scholarship that goes along with it.

Her best friend, Pete, thinks she should write through her own pain, but when Lu overhears another couple planning a precollege breakup just like hers, she becomes convinced that they’re the answer to cracking her writer’s block. And when she meets them—super-practical Iris and cute, sweet Cal—and discovers they’re postponing their breakup until the end of the summer, she has to know more.

Have Cal and Iris prolonged their own misery by staying together, knowing the end is in sight? Or does the secret to figuring out all this love business—and getting over it—lie with them? One thing is certain—if Lu can’t make a breakthrough before summer is over, she can kiss her future goodbye.

From the acclaimed author of Let’s Get Lost and North of Happy comes a touching exploration of love, relationships and the pain of breaking up.

Publisher: Inkyard Press
Release Date: April 30, 2019


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? #46

Hosted weekly by The Book Date.

Happy Monday!

Despite having to do end-of-the-semester projects and exams last week, I still had a pretty great week: hiking and running, kickball with friends, Avengers: Endgame, and lots of reading. (This week, I only have three exams left to take, and I'll be free to read to my heart's content until the summer semester starts!)

27 April 2019

Gone Too Soon | Book Review, Guest Post + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


An icy road. A car crash.
A family changed forever.

Hannah Josephson had always been the “perfect” daughter. Kiera couldn’t live up to her before, and she certainly can’t now that her older sister has died in a car accident. But the image she carried resentfully of Hannah is challenged when she finds her dead sister’s diary and begins to read. Apparently Hannah’s final year wasn’t as perfect as everyone thought.

Caught in a pattern of blaming each other, the Josephson family is falling apart. Their father has left, their mother is mixing opiates and alcohol, little sister Maddie has been shipped off to spend the whole summer with their grandmother, and Kiera feels utterly alone with her grief and anger. A summer job helping at a park in a poor section of town provides a friend and a purpose.

But it’s Hannah’s diary that fills her thoughts. For the first time in years, she feels close to the sister she’s lost. But can the knowledge she gleans about her possibly help her patch back together the family that seems determined to implode?

Publisher: WhiteSpark Publishing
Release Date: November 15, 2018


26 April 2019

Ink and Bone | First Line Friday + The Friday 56

The Friday 56 is hosted weekly by Freda's Voice.
First Line Friday is hosted weekly by Hoarding Books.

Happy Friday!

A friend let me borrow her copy of this book months ago, and I'm finally reading it. I'm enjoying it so far, so I'm hoping I can finish it up this weekend and return it next week.

25 April 2019

The Summer Retreat | Book Review + Excerpt

ABOUT THE BOOK


Celeste Jones has plans for a perfect summer with her boyfriend (and hopefully soon-to-be fiancé)—until he dumps her to be with the woman he’s had on the side for months. Heartbroken and furious, Celeste resolves to move on. When the going gets tough, the tough…okay, the not-so-tough go to the beach.

As soon as school lets out for the summer, she waves goodbye to her first-graders, packs up her bikini and heads for Moonlight Harbor, where she knows her big sister, Jenna, will receive her with open arms. Jenna could probably use some help at the Driftwood Inn, and Celeste is happy to do chores around the place in exchange for a relaxing summer escape. She just needs something—or someone—to distract her from her troubles.

Finding The One can be tricky, and Jenna is determined to make sure Celeste gets it right this time around. Not that Jenna’s an expert. She’s still trying to sort out her own love life. But if both sisters listen to their hearts, eventually they’re bound to discover that life—and love—is good at the beach.

Publisher: MIRA
Release Date: April 23, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


24 April 2019

Lone Star Standoff | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


A high-profile trial turns lethal…

The next exciting Lone Star Justice novel.

Presiding over the trial of a powerful drug cartel member, Judge Aubrey Madison finds her life threatened, and Texas Ranger Sean McNair isn’t taking any chances. Protecting the widow and her twins comes naturally to Sean—maybe too naturally for a guy who’s convinced he shouldn’t have a family. But he can’t help wishing for a future with Aubrey…if he can keep her alive.

Publisher: Love Inspired Suspense
Release Date: May 1, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


The Killing Tide | Waiting on Wednesday

Hosted weekly by Breaking the Spine 
to spotlight eagerly-anticipated upcoming releases.
(Similarly, Can't-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Wishful Endings.)

Happy Wednesday!

Ooh, I'm so excited to start the new Coastal Guardians series from Dani Pettrey. Come on, August!

23 April 2019

RES-Q Tyler Stop | Excerpt + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


It's the summer of 1968 in Sonoma County, California, and eleven-year-old Weston Gregg and his nine-year-old sister, Wendy, are looking for fun things to do during their summer break from school. When they discover some abandoned rabbits, they hatch an idea to make a positive difference for animals and people in their small town of Tyler Stop. 

They decide to form 'Rescue Each Species-Quickly', or RES-Q Tyler Stop.

There are challenges to face as they move forward into their new venture, including standing up to someone who is targeting Weston's friends for being different and a painfully bad decision.

Will Weston have to handle these issues on his own or will he learn to accept the advice and wisdom shared by some important people in his life? Join Weston and his family and friends as they share some adventures and learn and grow together in RES-Q Tyler Stop.

Publisher: JMJ Story Stitcher Books
Release Date: April 22, 2019


The Governess of Penwythe Hall | Book Review, Guest Post + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


In the first of a new series from beloved Regency romance author, Sarah Ladd, Delia, a governess to five recently orphaned children, would risk anything to protect them . . . even her heart.

Cornwall was in her blood, and Delia feared she’d never escape its hold.

Cornwall, England, 1811

Blamed for her husband’s death, Cordelia Greythorne fled Cornwall and accepted a governess position to begin a new life. Years later her employer’s unexpected death and his last request to watch over his five children force her to reevaluate. She can’t abandon the children now that they’ve lost both parents, but their new guardian lives at the timeworn Penwythe Hall . . . back on the Cornish coast she tries desperately to forget.

Jac Trethewey is determined to revive Penwythe Hall’s once-flourishing apple orchards, and he’ll stop at nothing to see his struggling estate profitable again. He hasn’t heard from his brother in years, so when his nieces, nephews, and their governess arrive unannounced at Penwythe Hall, he battles both grief of this brother’s death and bewilderment over this sudden responsibility. Jac’s priorities shift as the children take up residence in the ancient halls, but their secretive governess—and the mystery shrouding her past—proves to be a disruption to his carefully laid plans.

Rich with family secrets, lingering danger, and the captivating allure of new love, this first book in the Cornwall Novels series introduces us to the Twethewey family and their search for peace, justice, and love on the Cornish coast.

Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: April 16, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


First Books I Reviewed | Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted weekly by That Artsy Reader Girl.

Happy Tuesday!

I posted my first review on this blog in 2012 (I can't believe it's been seven years!). Over the next two years, I posted sporadically, as the following list shows, before getting more into a blogging groove in 2014.  

22 April 2019

We Were Beautiful | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


It’s been a year since fifteen-year-old Mia Hopkins was in the car crash that killed her older sister and left her terribly scarred. The doctors tell her she was lucky to survive. Her therapist says it will take time to heal. The police reports claim there were trace amounts of alcohol in her bloodstream. But no matter how much she tries to reconstruct the events of that fateful night, Mia’s memory is spotty at best. She’s left with accusations, rumors, and guilt so powerful it could consume her.

As the rest of Mia’s family struggles with their own grief, Mia is sent to New York City to spend the summer with a grandmother she’s never met. All Mia wants to do is hide from the world, but instead she’s stuck with a summer job in the bustling kitchens of the café down the street. There she meets Fig—blue-haired, friendly, and vivacious—who takes Mia under her wing. As Mia gets to know Fig and her friends—including Cooper, the artistic boy who is always on Mia’s mind—she realizes that she’s not the only one with a painful past.

Over the summer, Mia begins to learn that redemption isn’t as impossible as she once thought, but her scars inside run deep and aren’t nearly so simple to heal … especially when Mia finally pieces together her memories of the night Rachel died.

From acclaimed author Heather Hepler comes We Were Beautiful, a poignant young adult novel about tragedy, forgiveness, and love. Perfect for fans of Robyn Schneider and Justina Chen.

Publisher: Blink YA
Release Date: April 2, 2019


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? #45

Hosted weekly by The Book Date.

Happy Monday!

It's been a chill week. Just what I needed before diving into final exams and projects this week.

19 April 2019

The Heart of a King | First Line Friday + The Friday 56

The Friday 56 is hosted weekly by Freda's Voice.
First Line Friday is hosted weekly by Hoarding Books.

Happy Friday!

I received a lot of exciting book mail this week (Book Outlet got me again!), but this new book from Jill Eilleen Smith is particularly enticing. I always love her biblical fiction, so I'm looking forward to venturing into Solomon's Court.

17 April 2019

Midnight on the River Grey | Waiting on Wednesday

Hosted weekly by Breaking the Spine 
to spotlight eagerly-anticipated upcoming releases.
(Similarly, Can't-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Wishful Endings.)

Happy Wednesday!

I so enjoyed In the Shadow of Croft Towers, so I'm looking forward to seeing what Abigail Wilson does next.

16 April 2019

Rainy Day Reads | Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted weekly by That Artsy Reader Girl.

Happy Tuesday!

April is a month known for its rain, and what's better to do during a rainstorm than read? Here are a few of the books I'll be reaching to read during upcoming rains:

15 April 2019

13 April 2019

A Most Inconvenient Love | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


Sober businessman Seb Ward may have come from a wealthy lumber-baron family in Minnesota, but he knows that appearances can be deceiving, and that his illustrious family is pretty dysfunctional. Being in another state has provided the buffer he sought from his father’s misdeeds, but when a little boy shows up on a train… a little boy who looks enough like Seb to be his own child… Seb’s faced with a dilemma. Raise the boy as his own, or let his mother suffer the embarrassment of “a brother by another mother.” And when the boy takes a shine to the Rachel Eichas, the newly contracted school teacher, Seb can’t help but do the same.

But Rachel was raised by an unloving, business-first father and there’s no way she’s looking for those same qualities in a husband. Can she see through Seb’s focus and drive to find the loving man within?

Release Date: February 26, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


12 April 2019

The Bright Unknown | Cover Reveal

ABOUT THE BOOK

Two young friends embark upon an epic journey across 1940s middle America in search of answers, a family, and a place to call home.

The only kind of life Brighton Friedrich understands is the one she has endured within the dreary walls of a rural Pennsylvania asylum. A nurse has thoughtfully educated and raised Brighton, but she has also kept vital information from her in order to keep her close. Brighton befriends a boy whom she calls Angel—he doesn’t know his name—and as the two of them learn more about what lies beyond the walls they call home, they fight for their release and eventually escape.

However, the world outside the only place they’ve ever known is not what they expect. They have no real names, no money, and no help—and they must rely upon the kindness of strangers as they walk and hitchhike from Pennsylvania to Michigan to find their last hope of a home.

This heartbreaking journey, narrated in gorgeous prose, explores what it means to belong—and to scour the universe with fresh eyes for the brightness within.

Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: October 22, 2019


Because of Winn-Dixie | First Line Friday + The Friday 56

The Friday 56 is hosted weekly by Freda's Voice.
First Line Friday is hosted weekly by Hoarding Books.

Happy Friday!

Because of Winn-Dixie is one of those books I neglected to read in my younger days, so I'll be remedying that today.

10 April 2019

The Lieutenant's Nurse | Book Review + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


November, 1941. She’s never even seen the ocean before, but Eva Cassidy has her reasons for making the crossing to Hawaii, and they run a lot deeper than escaping a harsh Michigan winter. Newly enlisted as an Army Corps nurse, Eva is stunned by the splendor she experiences aboard the steamship SS Lurline; even more so by Lt. Clark Spencer, a man she is drawn to but who clearly has secrets of his own. But Eva’s past—and the future she’s trying to create—means that she’s not free to follow her heart. Clark is a navy intelligence officer, and he warns her that the United States won’t be able to hold off joining the war for long, but nothing can prepare them for the surprise attack that will change the world they know.

In the wake of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Eva and her fellow nurses band together for the immense duty of keeping the American wounded alive. And the danger that finds Eva threatens everything she holds dear. Amid the chaos and heartbreak, Eva will have to decide whom to trust and how far she will go to protect those she loves.

Set in the vibrant tropical surroundings of the Pacific, The Lieutenant’s Nurse is an evocative, emotional WWII story of love, friendship and the resilient spirit of the heroic nurses of Pearl Harbor.

Publisher: MIRA
Release Date: March 5, 2019


Fake It Till You Break It | Waiting on Wednesday

Hosted weekly by Breaking the Spine 
to spotlight eagerly-anticipated upcoming releases.
(Similarly, Can't-Wait Wednesday is hosted by Wishful Endings.)

Happy Wednesday!

I loved The Way to Game the Walk of Shame last year, so I'm super excited for another book from Jenn P. Nguyen. Especially since it involves another fake relationship.

09 April 2019

The Unexpected Champion | Excerpt + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


They’re as different as could be. But they’ll need to trust each other to survive the wilderness . . . and the dangers chasing them.

City dweller John McCall never expected to be out in the High Sierras of 1868 on a wild-goose chase to find the Chiltons’ supposedly lost grandson. But now that he’s out here, things have gotten even more complicated, mostly due to wildcat Penny Scott. She’s not like any woman he’s ever met–comfortable in the woods, with a horse, and with a gun.

When Penny and John are taken against their will by a shadowy figure looking for evidence they don’t have, both realize they’ve stumbled into something dangerous. With their friends and family desperately searching for them, Penny and John must make a daring escape.

When they emerge back into the real world, they discover their kidnapper just won’t stop. This city man and country woman must bring a powerful, ruthless man to justice, all while fighting a very inconvenient attraction to each other.

Publisher: Bethany House
Release Date: March 5, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


08 April 2019

Through the White Wood | Book Review + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


The Bear and the Nightingale meets Frostblood in this romantic historical fantasy from the author of Beyond a Darkened Shore.

When Katya loses control of her power to freeze, her villagers banish her to the palace of the terrifying Prince Sasha in Kiev.

Expecting punishment, she is surprised to find instead that Sasha is just like her—with the ability to summon fire. Sasha offers Katya friendship and the chance to embrace her power rather than fear it.

But outside the walls of Kiev, Sasha’s enemies are organizing an army of people bent on taking over the entire world.

Together, Katya’s and Sasha’s powers are a fearsome weapon. But as their enemies draw nearer, will fire and frost be enough to save the world? Or will Katya and Sasha lose everything they hold dear?

Inspired by Russian mythology, this lushly romantic, intensely imaginative, and fiercely dramatic story is about learning to fight for yourself, even when the world is falling down around you.

Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: April 9, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? #43

Hosted weekly by The Book Date.

Happy Monday!

Well, homework occupied a lot of my time this last week, but I still had some great time socializing and reading. I'm content.

07 April 2019

The Songbird and the Spy | Book Review, Guest Post + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


As shells explode over Nazi-occupied France, American music student Claire Baudin is trapped behind enemy lines, struggling to protect her identity. Singing as a barmaid while she plans her escape, a handsome Third Reich captain threatens everything she knows to be true about the enemy.

Nazi Captain Michael Reiner isn’t who he claims to be. A British language expert turned spy, he discovers the truth about Claire, but he knows the importance of a secret. Struggling to resist his attraction to the songbird, he’s determined to complete his assignment, no matter the cost. His cover is threatened when a ruthless female Gestapo officer arrives hunting Resistance fighters. The raid forces Michael’s hand: complete the mission or save Claire.

As the war threatens to tear them apart, they must rely on each other for survival. Is there hope—and a future—for an American songbird and a British spy?

Publisher: Smitten Historical Romance
Release Date: February 19, 2019


06 April 2019

The Sewing Sisters' Society | Book Review

ABOUT THE BOOK


Hattie McGillicuddy might not look like your typical matchmaker, but Hattie makes things happen in the little town of Second Chance, South Dakota. With the arrival of the railroad and official statehood, Hattie’s determined to bring brides west, and not just any brides. Brides who need the wide open prairie as much as the prairie- and the prairie men- need them! Three pioneer stories of unlikely love are woven around a little town full of homespun characters that take us back to another place and another time but with the same faith, hope and love we cherish today.

Macy can’t sew a lick, and she’s come to town with a sacrifice and a secret, but when Hattie’s first apprentice is attracted to the pastor of the only church in town—the man raising her illegitimate son—will the truth set her free? Or make her leave the town and her son behind?

Unjustly accused, Nellie comes west to escape the law. She has a way with tucks and gathers, and every Western town could use more tucks and gathers. She’s determined to improve the drab look of the prairie and manages to brighten hearts as well. But will her quick speech and firm ideas of women’s suffrage draw Levi Eichas closer or send the somber carriage maker running? 

Grief has robbed Ann Hazel, but when her aunt pushes her to go west and help an ailing Hattie McGillicuddy turn hems, Ann’s shamed into it. She’s managed to avoid life for awhile, but when Sol Eichas’s nanny comes down sick, Ann reluctantly agrees to help. As she winds her way around Sol’s heart and home, can the two troubled souls leave the past behind to embrace a future together?

Release Date: January 22, 2019


OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES


05 April 2019

The Baggage Handler | Favorite Quotes + Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK


In a similar vein to The Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews or Dinner with a Perfect Stranger by David Gregory, The Baggage Handler is a contemporary story that explores one question: What baggage are you carrying?

When three people take the wrong suitcase from baggage claim, their lives change forever.

A hothead businessman coming to the city for a showdown meeting to save his job.

A mother of three hoping to survive the days at her sister’s house before her niece’s wedding.

And a young artist pursuing his father’s dream so he can keep his own alive.

When David, Gillian, and Michael each take the wrong suitcase from baggage claim, the airline directs them to retrieve their bags at a mysterious facility in a deserted part of the city. There they meet the enigmatic Baggage Handler, who shows them there is more in their baggage than what they have packed, and carrying it with them is slowing them down in ways they can’t imagine. And they must deal with it before they can leave.

In this modern-day parable about the burdens that weigh us down, David Rawlings issues an inspiring invitation to lighten the load.

Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: March 5, 2019