Thursday, March 31, 2016

A Fool & His Monet (Serena Jones Mystery #1) by Sandra Orchard

Title: A Fool & His Monet (Serena Jones Mystery #1)
Author: Sandra Orchard
Pages: 336
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Revell
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     Sketchy politics and a palette of lies can’t stop Serena Jones from exposing the mastermind behind the daring theft of a priceless work of art.

     Serena Jones has a passion for recovering lost and stolen art – one that’s surpassed only by her zeal to uncover the truth about who murdered her grandfather. She’s joined the FBI Art Crime Team with the secret hope that one of her cases will lead to his killer. Now, despite her mother’s pleas to do something safer – like get married – Serena’s determined to catch thieves and black market traders.

     When a local museum discovers an irreplaceable Monet missing, Serena leaps into action – and a whole heap of trouble.

My review:

     An incredible mystery that also made me laugh!

     This book was a wonderful mixture of mystery, romantic interest, and comedic moments. I absolutely love Serena Jones. She is a wonderful FBI agent who also has some hang-ups that she has to deal with. She is surrounded by a whole cast of supporting characters. Some of them are very straight forward but others can only be described as quirky. Among the quirky ones my favorites are Aunt Martha and Harold. They gave me a lot to laugh about.

     The plot is a current case Serena is trying to solve with mention made of a cold case that weighs heavy on her mind. By the end of this book the current case is dealt with. I have a feeling that the cold case will be continued in future books in this series.

     There were a lot of well-crafted twists and turns in the story that really kept me guessing. Sandra did a marvelous job of throwing out different possibilities to confuse the reader. It was fun to try and unravel the mystery along with Serena.

     I am really looking forward to seeing what comes next for Serena and all her friends. This book is getting a rating of 5 stars from me. I’m highly recommending it.

     You can find out more about Sandra Orchard and her books at her website:

Monday, March 28, 2016

Dressed for Death (Drew Farthering Mystery #4) by Julianna Deering

Title: Dressed for Death (Drew Farthering Mystery #4)
Author: Julianna Deering
Pages: 336
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Genre: Cozy Mystery (set in 1933 England)
Publisher: Bethany House
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     A regency-era costume party should have been an amusing diversion, but it seems wherever Drew Farthering goes, mystery – and murder – are on the guest list.

     Drew and Madeline Farthering arrive at a Regency-era house party at Winteroak House, excited to be reunited with old friends, including Drew’s former Oxford classmate Talbot Cummins. Tal is there with his fiancée, Alice Henley, and though many present seem worried about the couple, nobody is prepared when Alice dies from an apparent overdose. Tal refuses to believe she’d taken the drug intentionally, and a dark question arises of whether the death is an accident or murder.

     The police have their own information, though, and Drew is shocked when they arrest someone he’s trusted since his childhood – someone who’s been smuggling drugs into the country for years. Stunned by what has happened, Tal begs Drew to get to the bottom of everything, but Drew has never felt more unsettled. Questioning his own ability to see people as they really are, Drew doesn’t know whom to trust, and he’s not ready for the secrets he’s about to uncover – or the danger he’ll bring down on everyone he holds dear.

My review:

     This is a WONDERFUL cozy mystery!

     This is part of a “true” series. You should read the books in this series in order. There are definite references to things that happen in the previous books in this one. That said, I have to admit this is the first book in the series I have read myself. There were times reading this novel that I felt a little confused and I think that wouldn’t have been the case if I had read the others first. I will definitely be going back to read all of them.

     I really love the depth of development for the characters in this story. Their backgrounds and personalities are so clear and easy to relate to. The main characters have a deep belief in God which I thoroughly enjoyed. At the same time they do at times question their understanding of what is going on and why God is allowing it. This is just part of human nature in my mind and it makes the story more realistic.

     This is a time period that I haven’t read very many books set in so I did have to take my time to understand some of the terms and words used. I did find it very interesting to take some time in a new era for me.

     The scene was set beautifully from the very beginning of the book and then the mystery slowly developed. As Drew and his friends tried to unravel what was going on and who was behind it there were a lot of fascinating twists and turns. It really kept me guessing right up to the end of the book.

     I am really looking forward to seeing what else Julianna comes up with for Drew and Madeline to deal with in future books. I am highly recommending this incredible book and giving it a rating of 5 stars.

     You can find out more about Julianna Deering and her books at her website:

Friday, March 25, 2016

Rocky Mountain Pursuit by Mary Alford

Title: Rocky Mountain Pursuit
Author: Mary Alford
Pages: 224
Year: 2016
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:


     Everyone believes agent Jase Bradford is dead – everyone but Reyna Peterson. Only he can protect her now that someone wants the information her CIA husband died to secure. As the one member of their spy team not killed, Jase must remain in the shadows. Yet when Reyna leads the enemy right to his mountain refuge and blows his cover, Jase risks his life for hers. As his best friend’s beautiful widow scales the walls around his heart, whether out of loyalty or love, he makes it his duty to secure her safety. But when their pursuers trap them in the snowy Colorado mountains, will it becomes his final mission?

My review:

     WOW! A major adrenaline rush throughout!

     The main characters are incredibly well developed and presented in a very clear and believable way. They both have incredible strengths that are used to help them survive the sudden danger that they find themselves in. The only problem that they need to overcome is to figure out how to trust each other since they had never met each other beforehand.

     I really enjoyed the fact that both Jase and Reyna have a personal relationship with God. They are able to hold on to their belief in Him as they try to navigate the treacherous road they are on.

     The prologue starts with a bang and then the danger builds from there. The pauses in the action are short and therefore very sweet. I needed a chance to calm down myself. I was kept guessing up to the end of the book.

     This is the first book I’ve ever read by Mary Alford. I will definitely be getting her other books and reading them. I’m highly recommending this wonderful story and giving it a rating of 5 stars.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Flirtation Walk by Siri Mitchell

Title: Flirtation Walk
Author: Siri Mitchell
Pages: 384
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Bethany House
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     At West Point, only true love should lead you to Flirtation Walk.

     Lucinda Pennyworth, the daughter of a con man, is trying her best to leave her father’s sordid past behind her. When he dies unexpectedly, she takes the opportunity to move to West Point to live with her aunt, ready to take on a new life and determined to marry a respectable man, a West Point cadet, to impress her relatives.

     Seth Westcott, a cadet at the academy, is proud to be at the top of his senior class. But when his mother dies and his sister loses their inheritance to a swindler, Seth wants nothing more than to head west to track down the con man. But the army will only send the cadets at the bottom of the class to the frontier . . . which leaves Seth with some tough choices.

     When a woman trying her best to be good meets a man determined to be anything but, can there be hope for love, or will two lonely hearts be condemned to casual flirtation?

My review:

     This is a fabulous historical romance!

     I love the depth of these characters. This isn’t just referring to the two main characters, but quite a few of the secondary ones as well. They are well developed and there is a variety of personalities. Each of them has their own strengths and weaknesses.

     Both Lucinda and Seth have big problems that they are trying to figure out how to deal with. One of the main issues involved in this book is the difficulty in finding good counsel when dealing with difficulties. The counsel we receive and follow has a huge impact on the final outcome of any situation.

     I really enjoyed the look into what life was like for the cadets at West Point in 1855, prior to the Civil War. There is just enough detail in it to be really entertaining and yet the presentation kept it from being a dry factual account of the rules they were expected to live by.

     The author’s note at the end of the book was great. I was fascinated to read the information that she included as to which historical figures actually went to West Point and how they did during their period as cadets.

     I really have to give this wonderful book a rating of 5 stars. I am highly recommending it.

     You can sign up for Siri's newsletter here: :  When you sign up for her newsletter you will receive a link for a free short story about one of the secondary characters.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Pseudonym by Dennis E. Hensley & Diana Savage

Title: Pseudonym
Author: Dennis E. Hensley & Diana Savage
Pages: 352
Year: 2016
Genre: Contemporary Novel
Publisher: Whitaker House
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book through The Book Club Network in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     Growing up on an Indiana farm, Sheila Davis has one dream – to become a professional writer. But her father sees no reason for his daughter’s fanciful thoughts to pull her away from her duties at home. After winning a scholarship, Sheila convinces her dad to let her attend a summer writing course at a nearby school, where she flourishes, thanks in large part to the encouragement of her high school English teacher.

     It seems as though fate has smiled on her when a whirlwind romance with upperclassman Dan Gray turns into a proposal of marriage, with a promise to support her educational and professional dreams if she’ll delay them and hold a job long enough for him to complete his degree. But Dan’s personal agenda sentences Sheila to years of menial work as he climbs the ladder of academia and secretly sabotages her every attempt to become a published author.

     The longing never dies, however, and when Sheila gets a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take a shot at getting published, she risks everything and dives in – only to encounter some stunning twists and turns she never anticipated, never prepared for, and never even imagined she’d have to confront.

My review:

     A masterfully written contemporary novel!

     The characters were so well developed and presented that I felt like they stepped right out of the book. I loved Sheila Davis Gray. I also detested Dan Gray. I was on an emotional roller coaster throughout this book as I connected with everything that was happening.

     One of the key issues that kept coming up was the topic of forgiveness. There were some absolutely incredible countrified expressions used in these discussions that really appealed to me.

     I hope that this team of writers, work together again. I will definitely be interested in any other books they write.

     This wonderful book is getting a 5 star rating from me and I’m highly recommending it. Be prepared to feel heartbreak, anger, frustration, and joy as you travel with Sheila on the road to follow her dream.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

The Cowboy's Bride Collection by Susan Page Davis + 8 others

Title: The Cowboy’s Bride Collection (9 Historical Romance Novellas)
Authors: Susan Page Davis, Vickie McDonough, Nancy J. Farrier, Miralee Ferrell,
              Darlene Franklin, Davalynn Spencer, Becca Whitham, Jaime Jo Wright,
              and Susanne Dietze
Pages: 448
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Barbour Books
Format: eBook (also available in paperback)
Note: I received a free eBook copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     Ride onto the open range alongside cowboys and cowgirls who embrace the adventures of living in the Old West from Kansas to New Mexico, Colorado to Texas. Whether rounding up cattle or mustangs, training horses, fending off outlaws, weathering storms, competing in rodeos, or surviving drought these cowboys work hard each day. But when hardheaded men have their weaknesses exposed by well-meaning women will they stampeded away or will a lasting love develop? Find out in this exciting collection of nine historical romances.

My review:

     This is a wonderful collection of short historical romances.

     These great novellas are all set in the time period from 1839-1895. The authors that were brought together to write each of these stories is fantastic. Each writing style is just different enough that you can easily tell they were written by different people. I thoroughly enjoyed the accuracy to the time period for each story. There is quite a variety of characters throughout these stories that kept me interested in reading them.

Love’s Sweet Storm by Miralee Ferrell
          I think that the thing I liked the most about this story is that it was a great reminder of the need to speak honestly about our feelings. We shouldn’t just go along with what others have planned for us.

The Cowboy Poet by Susan Page Davis
          The thing that really caught my attention in this story was how teasing affects people, even adults.

     I really like the fact that with these short stories it is easy to take just a little time each day and finish a whole story in just a couple of days. They are brief escapes from our everyday lives.

     This great collection is getting a rating of 5 stars from me and I am recommending it.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Buried (Mountain Cove #1) by Elizabeth Goddard

Title: Buried (Mountain Cove #1)
Author: Elizabeth Goddard
Pages: 224
Year: 2015
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense
Format: eBook (also available in paperback)

About the book:


     Fleeing to Alaska is the only option for Leah Marks after witnessing a murder. Afraid for her life, the legal investigator hopes a remote cabin will be a safe shelter. But the killer has tracked her to Mountain Cove. As he chases her into snow-packed Dead Falls Canyon, an avalanche buries them both. Saved by daring search and rescue specialist Cade Warren, Leah longs to tell him the truth. But how can she, without bringing even more danger into Cade’s life? Especially when they discover the killer is very much alive and waiting to take them both down.

My review:

     A riveting romantic suspense novel!

     I love both of the main characters in this book. Cade and Leah are very well developed and are multi-faceted. They both have strengths and weaknesses. It was interesting seeing them learn to use their strengths and accept those weaknesses.

     I enjoyed the exploration into the tangled emotions that someone can develop over time and through traumatic experiences. Love and admiration are not usually the only feelings we can have for another individual. Those two positive feelings many times are knotted together with some very powerful negative feelings at the same time. Learning how to recognize this can be very difficult and life changing.

     There is also a lot of soul searching that each of these characters go through as they try to figure out how to trust after being wounded by others. I really enjoyed seeing how both of them took things to God and trusted Him.

     The story started with an intensely frightening scene and the suspense really didn’t stop. There were short periods where the danger seemed to be kept at a distance so that Cade and Leah could catch their breath and relax just a little bit.

     This is an incredible story and I’m highly recommending it. It is getting a 5 star rating from me. I’m really looking forward to reading the other books in this series.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Playing the Part (A Class of Their Own #3) by Jen Turano

Title: Playing the Part (A Class of Their Own #3)
Author: Jen Turano
Pages: 352
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Genre: Historical Romantic Comedy
Publisher: Bethany House
Format: Paperback (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     Lucetta Plum is an actress on the rise in New York City, but is forced to abandon her starring role when a fan’s interest turns threatening. Lucetta’s widowed friend, Abigail Hart, is delighted at the opportunity to meddle in Lucetta’s life and promptly whisks her away to her grandson’s estate to hide out.

     Bram Haverstein may appear to simply be a somewhat eccentric gentleman of means, but a mysterious career and a secret fascination with a certain actress mean there’s much more to him than society knows.

     Lucetta, who has no interest in Abigail’s matchmaking machinations, has the best intentions of remaining cordial but coolly distant to Bram. But when she can’t ignore the strange and mysterious things going on in his house, it’ll take more than good intentions to keep her from trying to discover who Bram is behind the part he plays.

My review:

     Another hilarious historical romantic comedy!

     This story doesn’t exactly pick up where the other two books in this series left off. In that sense it isn’t a “true” series. But the main characters from each of the previous books put in an appearance and reference is made to how they met. In my mind this means that reading the books in order enhances the enjoyment of reading this final story.

     The characters that Jen creates for this book live up to my expectations from reading all of her previous books. The quirks that she comes up with for each of them never fail to amuse me. Lucetta Plum and Bram Haverstein are some of the funniest people that I’ve ever had the chance to meet in the pages of a book.

     Lucetta hates the idea of damsels in distress, but she finds herself thrust into that role. I love how she managed to express her displeasure in it and tries to get out of situations by herself. The twists in the story explaining what put her in danger and connecting all the different people by the end of the story were very entertaining.

     Added to all of these, light-hearted shenanigans there are some deeper looks at how strained family relationships can develop. Then steps needed to restore them are explored. This resulted in a nice challenge to take a look at our own relationships.

     As with both of the previous books in this series I have to highly recommend this one. It gets a rating of 5 stars from me. If you want something to make you laugh you will not regret picking up this delightful book.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

My Mother's Quilts by Ramona Richards

Title: My Mother’s Quilts
Author: Ramona Richards
Pages: 240
Release Date: March 8, 2016
Genre: Devotional
Publisher: Worthy Inspired
Format: Hardcover (also available in eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     Inspired by thirty family heirloom quilts, each devotion shares the enduring legacy of faith, family and tradition in our lives.

My review:

     A wonderful 30-day devotional with incredible pictures!

     Each of the devotions in this book is prompted by a quilt that was made either by Ramona’s mother or her grandmother. They include some information about the story behind the making of that quilt and at least one marvelous picture of the quilt she is talking about. Then she goes on to tell the lesson that she learned about living life from the quilt itself or the period of time that the quilt was made. She end each devotion with a short prayer to help get a conversation started with God about that life lesson.

     I thoroughly enjoyed each of the devotions in this book. The pictures of quilts reawakened my fascination with quilts. I wish that my family had this rich history of quilting and faith that Ramona’s family does.

     I am highly recommending this sweet devotional and giving it a rating of 5 stars.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Bedtime Snuggles by Patricia Reeder Eubank

Title: Bedtime Snuggles
Author: Patricia Reeder Eubank
Pages: 22
Release Date: March 8, 2016
Genre: Children’s Illustrated
Publisher: Worthy Publishing Kids / Ideals
Format: Hardcover Board Book
Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     A sweet and cozy book that’s perfect for bedtime reading.

My review:

     This is a charming bedtime board book.

     Bedtime is special for mommies and their children. This sweet book with adorable pictures shows that it is a special time for animals too. Each 2 page spread shows a different animal family getting settled in for the night. The story of their routine is told in very simple rhymes. The illustrations are crisp and delightful.

     If my children were little I would gladly grab this sweet book to read to them at bedtime. I wish I had the opportunity to tuck some of my grandchildren in myself. I am definitely recommending this book and giving it a 5 star rating.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Finding Love in Tombstone, Arizona by Miralee Ferrell Narrated by: Sorrel Brigman

Title: Finding Love in Tombstone, Arizona
Author: Miralee Ferrell
Narrated by: Sorrel Brigman
Pages: 317
Listening Time: 7 hours 39 minutes
Year: 2015
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Mountain Brook INK
Format: Audio (also available in paperback and eBook)
Note: I received a free copy of this wonderful audio book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     Love and second chances aren’t easy to come by in a town named Tombstone. When Christy Grey receives an urgent summons to Tombstone, Arizona, she reluctantly leaves her new life in California. The trip goes from bad to worse when four masked men hold up Christy’s stage. She finally arrives in Tombstone to find her mother ill and her brother trapped in a life of gambling. Desperate for money to support her family, will Christy bow to pressure from the local saloon owners and return to the life she thought she’d given up for good?

     Nevada King has problems of his own. He’s been dodging bullets for years and wants nothing more than to settle down and get married. But he’s on the run from outlaws bent on revenge, and the one woman who captures his interest recognizes him from the stagecoach holdup. Will Christy turn Nevada in to the authorities, or will the outlaws on his trail catch him first?

My review:

     An absolutely wonderful historical romance novel!

     I loved both Christy Grey and Nevada King. Miralee did an incredible job of developing and presenting these great characters. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting them and slowly learning about their personal backgrounds. It helped me see what shaped them into the people they are at the time of this story.

     The interest between them started to build slowly which is what I like to see in a book. It feels more natural to me that way. I was fascinated by the inclusion of some characters that I have actually heard about in history and many other books and movies set in the period and location.

     One other thing that I really enjoyed in this story was the focus on God’s redemption. Both Christy and Nevada were encouraged to trust God by others in their lives.

     Sorrel Brigman did one of the best jobs of narrating that I have ever heard in an audio book. The variety of voices that she used for the different characters kept the book alive. I was totally entranced by her narration.

     I was entranced by this wonderful story and the performance by the narrator. I am highly recommending it. I will be looking for more audio books performed by Sorrel Brigman. This marvelous presentation gets a rating of 5 stars from me.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Web of Shadows (Agents Under Fire #2) by Susan Sleeman

Title: Web of Shadows (Agents Under Fire #2)
Author: Susan Sleeman
Pages: 276
Release Date: February 29, 2016
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Bell Bridge Books
Format: eBook (also available in paperback)
Note: I received a free eBook copy of this novel from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.

About the book:

     A killer is lurking in the shadows . . .

     FBI agent Nina Brandt loves her job. Sure, she’s made some enemies, but she knows she’s making the world a better place. It’s lonely at times, but she has good friends to get her through. It’s a good life.

     Little does she guess that her past is about to come back and haunt her . . . in more ways than one.

     When Navy SEAL Quinn Stone learns that his geeky younger brother, Ty, hacked into the TSA’s No Fly List, he would rather take a bullet than go to his former fiancée, Nina Brandt, for help. Five years ago, she resented his commitment to his SEAL team and gave him an ultimatum – her or the team. He chose the team. But now, he and his brother have no other choice . . . not if he doesn’t want to see the kid behind bars.

     Nina has finally moved on, but she can’t resist Ty’s plea for help . . . especially when he drops a bomb that could rock national security. The laptop he’d used to hack the TSA has been stolen. Fearing terrorists would do just about anything to get their hands on this list, Nina agrees to take the case to her team. After all, this will become an FBI matter and Quinn’s help won’t be needed . . . as much as she’s starting to want it.

     But the thief has more on his mind than just the list. He’s been waiting for a chance to get back at the woman who sent him to prison two years ago. And he intends to make her pay – in the most painful way possible . . .

My review:

     An absolutely incredible romantic suspense novel!

     The main characters from book one make an appearance in this story but their actual story is not talked about so in my opinion this book can be read without having read the first book before it.

     The characters in this book are fantastic! Both Nina Brandt and Quinn Stone have been extremely well developed and their family backgrounds are slowly revealed. This really to make me feel like I was getting to know people I have just met. I really enjoyed seeing how things, from each of their family’s worked to shape who they are and how they dealt with different situations throughout the story.

     The fact that we met the bad guy from the beginning and knew what he was trying to accomplish all along added an extra level of excitement for me. The plot was so well presented that I was kept on my toes trying to see how the good guys were going to figure things out.

     I’m looking forward to the next book in this series. This book is getting a rating of 5 stars from me and I’m highly recommending it.