The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan ~ 4⭐

Genre: Holiday Fiction ~ Release Date: October 26, 2021

REVIEW: I rather liked The Christmas Bookshop by Jenny Colgan. I will say it was probably not one of my favorites but, I still really liked it. She writes about Scotland in this book and I’ve found myself reading several books based in Scotland in the last year. I seem to be drawn to that area.

This story is about Carmen, a young woman who always feels like an outcast in her own family. She doesn’t go on to college like her sister and then loses the only job she’s ever had during a bad economy. I think there are a lot of women that can sympathize with her. Her sister is pregnant with number four. She needs help and she has found a part-time job for Carmen. I felt really bad for her but, good thing start to happen!

I became immersed in her surroundings in Edinburgh. I love the history and some of the characters. Some of her many characters were not very developed but, they didn’t need to be. I liked Carmen and her eccentric boss Mr. McCredie who owns a rare and antique bookshop. He is pretty interesting. We met a snobby author who was really kind of funny. At least the circumstances were. There are so many interesting happenings that keep this book interesting. 

I would recommend this book for any Jenny Colgan fan or anyone that enjoys something a little different once in a while. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #WilliamMorrow #CustomHouse and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

SYNOPSIS: Perfect for the holidays! A brand-new heartwarming Christmas novel from the beloved New York Times bestselling author of The Bookshop on the Corner and Christmas at the Island Hotel

Laid off from her department store job, Carmen has perilously little cash and few options. The prospect of spending Christmas with her perfect sister Sofia, in Sofia’s perfect house with her perfect children and her perfectly ordered yuppie life does not appeal.

Frankly, Sofia doesn’t exactly want her prickly sister Carmen there either. But Sofia has yet another baby on the way, a mother desperate to see her daughters get along, and a client who needs help revitalizing his shabby old bookshop. So Carmen moves in and takes the job.

Thrown rather suddenly into the inner workings of Mr. McCredie’s ancient bookshop on the picturesque streets of historic Edinburgh, Carmen is intrigued despite herself. The store is dusty and disorganized but undeniably charming. Can she breathe some new life into it in time for Christmas shopping? What will happen when a famous and charismatic author takes a sudden interest in the bookshop—and Carmen? And will the Christmas spirit be enough to help heal her fractured family?

Wrapped Up in Christmas Hope by Janice Lynn ~ 5⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Genre: Holiday Fiction ~ Release Date: October 26, 2021

REVIEW: Hope! Christmas Hope. Wrapped Up in Christmas Hope by Janice Lynn was a book I read with Hope all the way through! A beautiful story about a woman with a 5 year old son who lost her husband in a climbing accident. 

This happens to be a Hallmark publication so, if you love Hallmark movies like a lot of us women, you’ll love this book! I have to tell you that Hallmark Christmas movies are the best. I usually make my list and check it twice! 

Janice Lynn has at least 7 books out but, she is a new author for me. I’m looking forward to reading more from her! Her writing and characters were so good. I fell in love with the town and a lot of the characters. It’s a place you would be happy to pack your bags and move to. By the way, there are two other books in this series. They are Wrapped Up in Christmas and Wrapped Up in Christmas Joy.

If you love Hallmark stories or you’ve read Janice Lynn, you probably want to add one more book to your Christmas reading list. Make sure you check your list twice! 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. Thank you!

SYNOPSIS: He’s willing to risk his life to save others.
Is she willing to risk her heart on him?

 
Morgan’s late husband was a daredevil…and now she’s a widowed single mom. All she wants now is to set up a stable life for herself and her son in the small town of Pine Hill, Kentucky.

Andrew’s a firefighter who thrives on the rush of saving others. His secret dream is to become a smokejumper and fight raging wildfires across the country. But it’ll mean leaving his hometown and the people who rely on him.

Morgan and Andrew are drawn together as they both volunteer to make quilts for veterans at the local quilt shop. Morgan’s son looks up to Andrew, and Morgan can’t help but notice how good Andrew is with him. Meanwhile, Andrew’s torn between his ambition and his growing attraction to Morgan. They both have choices to make about their future…and about each other.



 

On My Terms by Ashley Farley ~ 5⭐

Genre: Murder Mystery ~ Release Date: October 26, 2021

REVIEW: WOW! Ashley Farley can write anything she puts her mind to. Her new book On My Terms was a huge step outside of her comfort zone and she knocked it out of the park! This book is classified as Murder Mystery but, it is so much more than that. 

I have been a fan of Ashley Farley for a couple of years and won the jackpot when she accepted me on her review team. She never disappoints. This book has a little love, death, murder, police procedure… you name it. It grabbed from the very first sentence and totally had me hooked by the time I turned the first page. 

I haven’t read an Ashley Farley book yet that didn’t leave me wanting more. They are so delicious. Her characters are often complex. The story lines are deep. Her writing has an easy flow making even the longer books fly by. 

If you haven’t read anything by this author yet, go ahead and pre-order On My Terms. You won’t regret it. You’ll be hooked and looking at her long list of books for another great read. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

SYNOPSIS: “A gripping story of love, family, loss, and redemption. Fast-paced, edgy, and loaded with drama.”

Jolie Hogan likes coffee black, panties lacy, and tequila neat. She’s a cop, turned journalist, turned private investigator. People say she’s ballsy. Truth is, her courage is a recklessness that stems from her troubled past.

Jolie is currently in a mess of trouble. She’s been set up for murder by a powerful criminal attorney. The murder victims are the attorney’s wife and Jolie’s husband, Lucas. Jolie will do whatever it takes to clear her name. Including selling her soul to the devil. In Jolie’s case, the devil is a wickedly hot detective who brings the past back to haunt her.

Manic Monday by Melissa Storm ~ 5⭐

Genre: Women’s Fiction ~ Release date: October 26, 2021

REVIEW: Humbled, Heartwarming and Informed. Those words come to mind when I think of my feelings while reading Manic Monday, Inc. by Melissa Storm. I’ve totally enjoyed the three books that make up The Sunday Potluck Club Series. This book is #3 and Oh, I hope there are going to be more books to come. 

Nichole that we all love struggles with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Caleb is Bridget’s brother. We learn about how they meet and her ability help him become organized. I loved learning about OCD and how it affects everyone differently. I just wanted to reach out and hug Nichole at times and shake her at others. 

The love these friends have for each other is heartwarming. They came together at a time of great sorrow and they continue to be there for each other even as they make good memories. We don’t often have many friends like that in this world. 

If you love sweet, clean stories about friendship and love, you’ll love this series. If you’ve read the first two books, you definitely want to read this third book. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #KensingtonBooks and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

SYNOPSIS: Live in the moment . . .

Nichole Peterson increasingly believes in rituals, routines, and checklists—especially after almost losing her father to cancer two years ago. Now she lives in constant fear of saying the wrong thing, knowing any conversation could be their last. She met her best friends—and their cherished canine companions—at the hospital right before each lost a parent. As the only member of the Sunday Potluck Club with a surviving loved one, she has a hard time opening up to her friends about the struggles that come with remission.

When a new doctor diagnoses Nicole with obsessive-compulsive disorder, she refuses to accept it. Then a series of unexpected events further throws her carefully scheduled life off-kilter and her anxieties into overdrive. It seems the only person she can confide in is her best friend’s older brother, Caleb—her polar opposite.

A free spirit, Caleb treasures spontaneity, avoiding structure as much as possible. Yet he’s the happiest person Nichole has ever met. As they grow closer, might their unlikely alliance help Nichole rediscover the more relaxed self she can scarcely remember—and even find something extra special along the way?
 
 

Traveler by Nola Nash ~ 5⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐+

Cross Genres: Time Travel Romance, Thriller, Adventure, and Fantasy TimeTravel ~ Release Date: March 10, 2022 Pre-order with this link: https://www.blackrosewriting.com/thrillers/traveler
using the code PREORDER2021 to get 15% off!

REVIEW: If you loved Crescent City Moon and Crescent City Sin by Nola Nash, you have a surprise coming. Traveler is a new book releasing on March 10, 2022! I was blessed to be an early reader and I’ve got to tell you I’ve never read another book like this one. It is totally awesome and my favorite so far. I rated her first two books 5 stars and so this one will have to be 5 stars plus.

There was so much history and research put in this book. It was almost like reading a history book but much more delicious. The book delves into several ancient time periods and you read about what was going on at the time and a little of some key leaders. 

Her characters were superb! Shelby was the main character and let me tell you, she had a supporting cast that was varied, interesting and totally fun. Shelby writes for a travel magazine. Benny is a friend/guide turned lover?  He catches up with her and helps her on her journey. I think you’ll find some of her guides in other countries a big part of the story. 

I don’t want to give the story away so you’ll have to pre-order the book and wait on pins and needles for it to be released. Just remember what I said… there is not another book like this one out there. It will stand out in my mind forever! 

Don’t forget to pre-order your copy at: https://www.blackrosewriting.com/thrillers/traveler. Use code: PREORDER2021 for a 15% discount

SYNOPSIS: If history is trying to tell you something, you better pay attention before it’s too late.

Shelby Starling is a train-wreck with a dream job—traveling the world writing promo material for Pioneer Tours, all the while hiding cracks in her armor behind a solid wall of snark and Chianti. But there’s more to Shelby Starling than she wants to admit. History has a bone to pick with her, and isn’t afraid to pull Shelby into the memories of her past lives to make its point.

Thanks to a universal misfire and the ineptitude of the gods, she must find her way back to the time she was destined for so she can stop living life after life watching great things happen instead of making great things happen. That is, of course, if she can get her shit together.

Will finding her destiny mean sacrificing love?

The Parents by Claire Seeber ~ 4⭐

Genre: Phycological Suspense ~ Release date: October 25, 2021

REVIEW: Do you love football? Or soccer? In the United States we call it soccer in England it is football. Well, if you love soccer and Psychological Suspense, you’ll love Claire Seeber’s new book The Parents.

I found her characters interesting. I always think of the English as stiff people and yet these folks weren’t that way. Although, I think all of them had problems going on in the background. Alex is the newcomer and she is widowed with two children. She has a 13 year old boy who decides to play football whose name is Harry and a girl named Iris who is the oldest and hates her mom. There were a lot of characters and I didn’t find myself particularly involved with any of them. 

Someone is digging into the background of the parents of the local team and spilling all the dirt on a vlog. That was interesting because everyone in town was waiting for the next shoe to drop. Most of that was pretty shocking. 

I don’t think I’ve ever watched a game of soccer so, I was pretty clueless when they were talking about the game, it’s different levels and whatnot. Most of the book took place around the team schedule and the clubhouse. Interestingly, they had a bar in the club. That’s something we don’t see here in the states. 

I’ll have my eye out for more from Claire Seeber. She has three other books that I’m going to check out. Maybe they won’t be about football or soccer! This girl is not a sports fan. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #Bookouture and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. Thank you! 

SYNOPSIS: It seems like they have it all. But we all have something to hide…

Moving to this village was supposed to be a fresh start for me and my thirteen-year-old son Harry. After the tragic death of my husband, it was a chance to leave everything bad behind and make better memories at Primrose Cottage, the postcard-perfect house with honeysuckle around the door.

However, things haven’t exactly been easy since we arrived, and after what we’ve been though, I’m scared of letting anyone new into our lives.

But when one of the local dads asks Harry to join the weekend sports club, I find myself saying yes. The smile on my son’s face gives me hope that I might have made the right decision in uprooting our lives.

All the other parents seem so kind in welcoming me into the fold. At least, they are to begin with… Until someone begins anonymously exposing secrets about everyone in the group.

As betrayals surface and the claws come out, I see how imperfect these people really are; and how far they’ll go to hide the truth. Then when one of the parents ends up dead at the end of a party, I realise that it’s not just lies and scandal they’re covering up.

Too late, I realise that I should have stayed away…

A completely addictive page-turner about the secrets and lies hiding beneath the image of a perfect family. Fans of Big Little Lies, Lisa Jewell and Louise Candlish will be absolutely hooked by this pacey read with a jaw-dropping twist you just won’t see coming.

Riverbend Gap by Denise Hunter ~ 5⭐

Genre: Women’s Christian Fiction ~ Release date: October 19, 2021

REVIEW: If you’re a fan of Denise Hunter, you certainly have something to look forward to. Riverbend Gap is book one of a new series A Riverbend Romance. I was totally immersed in the first book and can’t wait for Mulberry Hollow the next installment to the series! 

There were so many characters in this book that were fighting against where they came from. Whether it was an alcoholic father, a drug addicted mother, the loss of a parent or a split family. They were all in some ways successful in overcoming the odds and yet there were still times the past would rear it’s ugly head. 

The romance at the center of this book was faced with impossible odds. I can’t tell you how that worked out. My heart broke many times and soared with hope many times during this read. I came to care for these folks and you will too. This author writes the best characters. They are flawed and perfect at the same time making them believable.

This book is one of those satisfying reads that will color your world for days after you finish reading it. It puts a good feeling in your heart and hope for this world. I can’t stop thinking about these characters. I think you’re going to love this book as much as I do. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #Netgalley, #ThomasNelson and #FirstEditions. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

SYNOPSIS: She came in search of the family she’d always wanted—and found the kind of love she’d never dared imagine.

When Katelyn Loveland’s car veered off a winding Appalachian Mountain road, she thought she was done for. That is until Cooper Robinson, local sheriff’s deputy, came to her rescue. And though Katie narrowly escaped her brush with death, she still fell. Hard.

She wasn’t the only one. But soon Cooper learns that the woman he’s more attracted to than any he’s ever met is his brother’s new girlfriend—and therefore unquestionably off limits. Yet, despite their best efforts, Cooper and Katie can’t seem to avoid running into each other. Or ignore the undeniable chemistry between them.

As they grow closer, Katie shares secrets from her past and the real reason she moved to their small North Carolina town. She also wins over Cooper’s welcoming and bighearted family. But they don’t know that her feelings for Cooper keep growing—all while she’s dating his brother. Soon the stakes of their emotional connection become higher than either could have imagined.

Katie stands to lose the first family she’s ever had, and a scandal could doom Cooper’s campaign for sheriff. Suddenly they find themselves on the edge of another precipice—and they’re forced to make a decision that could change their lives forever.

  • Sweet and thoughtful contemporary read
  • First in the new Riverbend Romance series
  • Book length: approximately 82,000 words
  • Includes discussion questions for book clubs

The Truth About Elves by Ekta R Garg ~ 4⭐

Genre: Holiday Fiction ~ Release date: September 20, 2021

REVIEW: I took a chance and requested the debut novel by Ekta R Garg called The Truth About Elves and I’m glad I did! 

It is supposed to be a Christmas story but, in reality it takes place just before Christmas. The author has created what you might call an alternate world where Santa lives and the business of meeting expectations of Christmas happens. I think Santa does more than we ever knew. 

This is a really short book and can be read in an evening. So, I really can’t tell you a lot about it or I would give the whole premise of the book away. I don’t want to get on Santa’s naughty list. I need more books for Christmas!

If you find you have a few hours some night and want to read a cute little story before Christmas, this book will fill that wish quite nicely. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #AtmospherePress and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

SYNOPSIS: As a bartender in Las Vegas, Curtis seems to have the dream life. He’s single, lives close to the Strip, and only has to worry about when to pick up the next extra shift. No one knows the truth about what happened ten years ago, and no one knows how he spends three months every year: as a part-time elf for Santa Claus.

When Curtis went to the Arctic Circle the first time, he thought he could escape the unthinkable. Now, the anniversary of the worst day of his life is coming up, and he’s been asked to do the unbelievable. If Curtis wasn’t a man of his word, he would turn his back on the whole thing. But Mr. C. took Curtis in when he had nowhere else to go, and now the boss is calling in a favor—the kind that will make Curtis face the memory of the unimaginable.

If you’ve ever wondered whether holiday magic is real, come find out. Embrace the season and the power of forgiveness along with Curtis as he discovers The Truth About Elves.

Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout ~ 4⭐

Genre: Marriage and Divorce Fiction ~ Release date: October 19, 2021

REVIEW: Oh William! was not my first book by Elizabeth Strout. I was surprised by how many of her books I’ve read. I think there is something about her writing style that just draws me in. It’s kind of like conversing or corresponding with an old friend. For me, she doesn’t have an eloquent or lyrical writing style. She writes exactly like someone might talk to themselves. It moves in a linear direction but, it kind of wanders around like my mind seems to do when I’m pondering something. Elizabeth Strout has a style all her own. 

This book explores human relationships and how they are all different. Lucy takes a trip with her ex-husband to investigate an old family secret. It’s interesting how the parties involved handle the discovery. Lucy and William’s friendship has stood the test of time which I liked. 

There are two other books in this series. My Name is Lucy Barton and Anything is Possible. If you’ve read the first two, you’ll want to read this one but, don’t let it stop you from reading this one even if you haven’t read the others. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #RandomHouse and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.  

SYNOPSIS: The Pulitzer Prize-winning, Booker-longlisted, bestselling author returns to her beloved heroine Lucy Barton in a luminous novel about love, loss, and the family secrets that can erupt and bewilder us at any point in life

Lucy Barton is a successful writer living in New York, navigating the second half of her life as a recent widow and parent to two adult daughters. A surprise encounter leads her to reconnect with William, her first husband – and longtime, on-again-off-again friend and confidante. Recalling their college years, the birth of their daughters, the painful dissolution of their marriage, and the lives they built with other people, Strout weaves a portrait, stunning in its subtlety, of a tender, complex, decades-long partnership.

Oh William! captures the joy and sorrow of watching children grow up and start families of their own; of discovering family secrets, late in life, that alter everything we think we know about those closest to us; and the way people live and love, against all odds. At the heart of this story is the unforgettable, indomitable voice of Lucy Barton, who once again offers a profound, lasting reflection on the mystery of existence. ‘This is the way of life,’ Lucy says. ‘The many things we do not know until it is too late.’

A Season of Change by Beth Wiseman ~ 5⭐

Genre: Amish Romance ~ Release date: October 5, 2021

REVIEW: A Season of Change was my first book by Beth Wiseman and a great book it was! I couldn’t put it down. It was number three in a series but, it did wonderfully as a stand alone. I didn’t realize it was part of a series when I started it. I want to go back and read books one and two although, I never felt lost or that I was missing anything reading this book out of order.

This book was like drinking water after a drought. It went down smooth and was refreshing. I just read a book that was a struggle so, I really enjoyed sitting back and relaxing with such a good book. Because it is an Amish romance, I knew there would be some talk of God but it wasn’t over the top or down your throat. Just a nice story that filled me up. 

There were troubles and characters finding their way forward to a fruitful life. It was poignant, brought tears to my eyes and made me remember that no matter what we are loved! If you enjoy a clean love story which includes love among family and those that become family, you will most likely find yourself falling in love with this book. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from #FirstEditions and #Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

SYNOPSIS: Finding peace means letting go of the past—and embracing the change that is to come. 

Sisters Esther and Lizzie have a new employee, Rose Petersheim, to help them tend to The Peony Inn. But their old matchmaking ways have stayed the same. The sisters focus their efforts on the lovely twenty-five-year-old Rose. Though Rose is witty and outspoken, her nervous chattering makes her the best match for someone calm and good at listening. Someone like Benjamin—the handsome handyman who recently moved to town. 

But when Esther receives an anonymous love letter and flowers, Rose’s love life is no longer the only one capturing the sisters’ attention. As they sleuth around searching for Esther’s secret admirer, they uncover that their grumpy renter, Gus, has a secret of his own that could bring about a difficult change in all their lives. And their continued meddling in Rose’s affairs reveals she, too, is hiding something—an old wound that could threaten her future happiness. 

As Rose, Lizzie, Esther, and Gus struggle to release the weight of their pasts, they discover that although people are complicated, love doesn’t need to be. 

This charming third installment of the Amish Inn series from bestselling author Beth Wiseman is a picture of loss and healing in which forgiveness will prove to be the greatest act of love.