Friday, April 3, 2020

Three Book Deal for Romance Fans!

I know some of us are needing romantic escapes a little more often these days, so I wanted to pass along this deal. THREE Jennifer Peel romances, for only .99 cents! I haven't read any of these, but they all look good.

Download your sale copy HERE

From Best Selling and Award-Winning Author, Jennifer Peel, comes a three-story collection of swoon-worthy contemporary romances.

Best of My Love - Book One

Can their friendship endure a marriage of convenience?

Jaime Seger has no delusions that her best friend, Christopher McKay, the man who has owned her heart and soul for the past twenty years, will ever see her as anything more than his faithful sidekick. After all, he married another woman. But when his wife dies unexpectedly, Jaime finds herself helping Christopher raise his young daughter, and on the end of an unlikely proposal. A proposal that promises everything she ever thought she wanted. Or does it?

As the best friends navigate married life, they find themselves torn apart by miscommunication and unrealized expectations. Jaime begins to doubt that Christopher will ever love her the way she loves him. Then near tragedy strikes and Jaime is allowed access into his private thoughts through the journal he's kept since they were in high school together. In its pages she discovers she's the main character, and it is her that he has always loved best. But after everything they've been through, is it too late? Can the best friends remain lovers too?

Beck and Call - Book Two

What happens when a dashing Englishman and a cheeky American collide? Sparks. And lots of them.

Call's life always seems to be on the cusp of working out, only to unravel at the last moment. For instance, when she finally meets the guy--the man she's been fantasizing about from afar--their first meeting is nothing like she hoped; in fact, she wishes she never met him.

But can the charming Englishman change her mind?

Midnight Promises - Book Three

Can a midnight promise endure the light of day?

Jillian knows a thing or two about the country music scene, and she wants no part of it after her country singer ex-husband. Her resolve weakens when she's seated next to country legend Cole Pendleton on a red-eye flight home to Nashville from Las Vegas. Between her emotional state, her fear of flying, and maybe a little vodka, she finds herself taking comfort in Cole's arms and lips during their four-hour flight.

Cole is determined to prove to her that he's nothing like her ex-husband, but can Jillian trust his midnight promises?

Thursday, April 2, 2020

A Quarantine Reading Challenge--Enter to Win!

Anyone up for a Quarantine Reading Challenge? For every book you complete on the list, you get an entry into a drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card! (Think of how many ebooks you could buy!) 🤩

Here's how it works. This post will be up until the quarantine ends---here on the blog, on my Author Facebook page and my Instagram page. Come back anytime and tell me in the comments which book challenges you have completed and I'll put your name in the drawing!

Here are the rules: Since this is a quarantine reading challenge, you must have completed the book during the quarantine. Not before.

Let's have some fun while we're stuck at home!

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

My Aloha Fic---Just For Fun

The series finale of Hawaii Five0 is this Friday. I've wanted a happy ending for Cath and Steve for a long time and there are some rumors flying around that she appears on the last episode. I hope so! 

In honor of that, here's a little fic for my McRoll friends. 


Walking away had been harder than he thought it would be. Danny, Eddie, Junior and Tani. Duke. Lou. They’d always be his ohana. But he had something---someone--- in front of him now that gave him hope that the future he wanted wasn’t lost.

Steve’s heart rate picked up as he approached the hangar. She was in there. He knew it. He’d always been able to feel when Catherine was near. The connection between them had been strong from the beginning and over the years it had stretched and pulled, but it had always been there. Joe had seen it. Doris. Freddie. Aunt Deb. And if he was honest, he had, too. He'd relied on it, even when they weren't together. 

He took a deep breath, his throat suddenly dry. Swallowing, he opened the car door and got out. He had so much he needed to say to her. But mostly, he just wanted to see her again. Hold her. Their last hug had been on an airstrip, and he’d watched her walk away. Again. It had taken everything he’d had not to call her back. He’d known then she would be the only woman he’d ever love. But he couldn’t pull her away from her job. He knew what duty meant to both of them. He’d chosen his job, once, too, but not anymore. And that was what he wanted to talk to her about today. He had to tell her what he was feeling. But would she understand?

Walking toward the side door, he stopped, his chest tight. This was it.

He opened the door and stepped through. Catherine was in the middle of the room, her back to him, facing the open doorway of the nearly empty hangar. She turned at the sound of the door closing behind him and smiled. “Hey, sailor.”

“Hey.” Steve’s pulse picked up as he walked toward her. He loved when she called him that. “Thanks for meeting me.”

She took a few steps to meet him halfway, pulling him in for a hug. His arms came around her, fitting her body against his. He relaxed and buried his nose in her hair. She still smelled like vanilla and sunshine and the scent reminded him of all the good memories between them. He closed his eyes and breathed her in again. She felt like home.

She pulled back, her brown eyes filled with concern. “Is everything okay? I heard about Doris. I’m so sorry. Even after everything that happened, I know what she meant to you.”

Steve reluctantly let her go and shoved his hands in his pockets. “I’m not going to lie. It’s been tough. First Joe. Then Mom.” He’d lost so much---and nearly lost Danny. He thought he’d have more time with all of them, but the point had been driven home. You never knew when your time was up. You had to make the most of it---and he wasn’t going to waste the chance he had right in front of him anymore. “Cath, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. About us.”

Catherine went very still, but her eyes never left his. “Me, too. That’s why I was glad you called. I have something to tell you.” She shifted away from him slightly, putting her own hands in her jeans pockets to mirror his stance. “I resigned from the CIA.”

The words echoed in his head and it took a moment to register exactly what she'd said. “You resigned?” he repeated.

She blew out a breath. “These last few years helped me fill the need of trying to make the world a safer place. I’ve captured men and women who wanted to harm my country and those I love. But it all started to seem empty, somehow. Hollow victories. There were so many times I wanted to call you to just share the day.” She gave him a small smile. “It helped to know we were both doing what we loved. It just wasn’t enough after a while. Not without you. Even if you hadn’t called, I was coming to find you.”

Steve took her hand in his, some of the turmoil he’d been going through falling away at her words. “That’s exactly how I’ve been feeling. I was doing what I loved, but something was missing.” He squeezed her fingers. “We had that something. Something good. And I let that get away because of the job. Your job. My job. It always got in the way. But I don’t want to do that anymore.” He stared at the sun’s rays filtering through her hair.“I want something more.” His gaze found hers. “With you.”

“Steve.” She looked up into his face, hope in her eyes. “What are you saying exactly?”

“I’m saying I want to put us first for once. For duty and job to come second.” He took her other hand in his, needing to touch her. “I don’t want to waste any more time without you in my life.”

Catherine bit her lip, her hands tightening on his. “I don’t either. I love you, Steve. That’s never changed. But I didn’t know if we’d ever be on the same page. And now we are.” She drew closer and put her hand on his chest, directly over his heart. “I choose you. Always. Forever.”

Those were the words he'd hoped to hear. Had she really said them? “Are you sure?” His hand slid up her arm and cupped her shoulder. He had to know. “Because I love you, too, and I’m in. One hundred percent.”

“So am I.” Her hand lifted to his jaw, brushing over the stubble. “I just can’t believe you’re here. That we’re here. I’ve dreamed about this moment for so long.”

“Really? You were dreaming about me, huh?" He let his hand trail down to her hip, outlining the curves he knew so well. "So, how did this dream end? I mean, I've got a few ideas of how I'd like it to end.” He grinned. He felt lighter, the heaviness that had hung over him for so long lifting a little with her in his arms.  

“Do your ideas feature a foxhole? Or MREs?” She raised her eyebrows.

Steve could hardly hold in a laugh. He'd missed how easy it had always been between them. "Maybe."

She tilted her head toward the plane behind them. “Well, I know a place. Secluded. Private. Perfect for . . . " she returned his grin ". . . two people like us. If you're interested.”

“Yeah?” He leaned in. “Sounds good to me.” His hand slid over her cheek, his thumb brushing her bottom lip. “I’ve missed you.”

She reached up on her tiptoes, her arms coming around his neck. “I’ve missed you, too. So much.” And she pressed her lips to his.

She was soft and warm and his heart squeezed. They were together. She’d chosen him. The universe had finally aligned and they were on the same page. His hand tangled in her hair as he deepened the kiss, showing her all the things he hadn't been able to say for so long. For the first time in ages, he could see his dreams within reach. And he was ready. Ready to start the next chapter of his life with her. 

But he didn’t want to do it in a hangar. He touched his forehead to hers. “Let’s get out of here.”

Her lips curved into a smile. “Whatever you say, Commander. Should we grab some dinner before we go?”

He pulled her close and laughed softly in her ear. “You know our track record with making it to dinner.”

“You know, you’re right, I’m sure we can scrounge something up later,” she whispered, pressing a kiss to his jawline.

Steve’s pulse pounded in his veins. Somewhere private and secluded with Cath was starting to sound pretty perfect. “Yes, ma’am.”

Catherine laughed and took his hand as they started toward the plane. His steps were sure as he walked into the future with the woman he loved at his side. 

No matter what was ahead, they'd face it. Together.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Freebie Alert for Romance Fans!

If you can't get into a full-length book right now, the Timeless Romance anthologies are romance novellas---shorter stories, but with all the feels, like a little romantic snack. And the Blind Date collection is FREE today if you want to try it! 

Get your free download HERE 

Here's the back copy:

Six Blind Dates . . . Six Chances to Fall in Love.

Three Historical Romance Novellas

THE PROMISE THAT KATY DID, by Annette Lyon: After the death of Sue Ellen, the closest thing she has to family, Katy knows it’s time to leave the house she’s lived in as a guest and start over in the city. She quickly secures a job, but before leaving, she must honor the unusual promise she made to Sue Ellen on her deathbed: meet with Mr. Balmer. The elderly gentleman arranges for his grandson Barrett to escort her to a town dance. That evening, shy Katy quickly feels at ease with her partner. If her new position weren’t taking her from town, perhaps something could develop between them. But Barrett may not feel the same about her, and besides, they don't have enough time to find out.

A LADY OF SENSE, by Sarah M. Eden: Eleanor Sherwood has lived her entire life under her parents’ thumb with little hope of escape. When they choose the unbearable Mr. Broadstead to be her future husband, she begs her father for another option. He arranges for her to meet Peter Havensham, who quickly proves himself a good and kindhearted gentleman, completely different from Mr. Broadstead, and utterly undeserving of a forced engagement. Eleanor cannot bring herself to prey upon Peter’s honor, but neither can she imagine a life with Mr. Broadstead. What is a lady to do when faced with such an impossible choice?

A SECOND CHANCE, by Heather B. Moore: Virginia needs a new start in order to recover from her broken marriage, so when her best friend Millie invites Virginia to Chicago, she goes to live with her friend’s family. But when Millie asked Virginia to participate in a double-date, Virginia knows she’s not ready to start dating again. Reluctantly she agrees, only to find out that Max might just be the man who can repair the cracks in her heart.

Three Contemporary Romance Novellas

BRAELYNN’S BLIND DATE, by Victorine E. Lieske. When Braelynn agrees to go on a blind date, she thinks she’s hit the jackpot. Tyler is gorgeous and the perfect gentleman. Of course she should have known it was too good to be true. It turns out that Tyler really wasn’t Tyler, but a random stranger who went along with Braelynn’s mistaken assumption. So, she chalks it up to a dumb mistake until she gets to work Monday morning and discovers that her gorgeous blind date is now her new boss.

BIANCA’S HOPE, by Rachel Branton: A blind-date-gone-wrong is not the way Bianca would have chosen to celebrate the news that she might be losing her business, but saying no to the sister who took care of her after their mother’s death proves impossible. So for one date, one torturous evening, she’ll endure the company of an infuriating, heartless man she has no intention of ever seeing again. She doesn’t expect her heart to have other plans. Bianca soon learns that sometimes the unexpected is not only what you need, it’s exactly what you’ve been waiting for all along.

BLIND SPOT, by Sariah Wilson: Ria has prepared most of her life to meet her prince, trouble is, her mother keeps yanking her back to reality. So when Ria reads about a country teeming with princes, she drops everything and applies to grad school. But every blind date goes wrong, and while Ria commiserates with her roommate Tessa and Tessa’s totally un-prince-like brother Paolo, Ria discovers that all the things she thought she wanted in a man are far from what she really needs.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Freebie for Audio Book Fans With Kids!

With so much uncertainty right now and families staying at home, you might be running out of things to do. Audible has announced that with schools closed, they're going to have audio books for kids available and FREE!

There were quite a few good titles for toddlers through to teens and literary classics that I loved as a kid. My two youngest children were really interested in several audio books listed and I know my family is going to take advantage of this gift.

Click HERE for the link if you're interested in listening as well

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Have You Changed Your Reading Habits?

Anyone up for a little poll? I'm interested to see if your reading habits have changed since the pandemic and quarantine started.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Free Romance for Your Quarantine Reading!

How is your quarantine going? I must admit, I'm reading a lot more---and brushing up on subjects that my children are learning so I can teach them. I did see that Jennifer Peel's romance, Hit and Run Love is free today! I'm definitely going to pick this one up.

You can get your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

When it comes to life, Kallie Clemmons is on top of her game. A no-nonsense lawyer, with beauty and a kind heart to match. But when it comes to love, she runs the other way. That is until she runs, literally, into her old college boyfriend, Officer Harrison Monroe. This time around though, Harrison isn’t going to let her do another hit and run. He’s determined to find out why she left him five years ago, without even a goodbye, and if at all possible, convince her to give up her running shoes.

What Harrison doesn’t know is that the key to their future hinges on her past and the secret she’s kept from him.

Will Harrison be able to unlock her secret and help her overcome her fears? Or will he have Kallie running scared?

Monday, March 23, 2020

Hawaii Five-0--Some Thoughts on Steve and Catherine

As Hawaii Five-0 comes to a close, I've been thinking a lot about Steve and Catherine and the slow rebuild we've seen between them since their breakup.

1. We don't hear much about her after the breakup until Steve finds out she was working for the CIA and her cover was about to be blown. Then he was totally focused on the mission and making sure she was safe, calling her, "someone very important to me." Then, after it's over and her cover is intact, Danny asks if Steve if he's going to be angry because she lied and Steve says, "If I'm honest with myself, I also understand why she did it. Under similar circumstances, I'd have done the same thing." So, he's starting to understand. He also tells CGI Jack Lord and Harry that he "might have met the right woman and couldn't hold on to her" and that he only had one that he "let in" speaking about Catherine.

2. The next time they see each other, Cath is coming to tell him his mother has been kidnapped and she needs his help to break her out. While on the plane, Cath tells Steve she wanted to tell him and he was the last person she ever wanted to lie to. She thanks him for saving her when her cover was nearly blown. He accepts that and says she would have done the same thing for him. Cath also finds out Steve was going to propose. It's still a little awkward between them, but at the end, he asks out of curiosity what she would have said, and she tells him she would have said yes. He closes the airplane door and lingers on it for a bit. Feelings are obviously still there and maybe thoughts of what if.

3. Then, when terrorists are on the island Cath comes to Steve with the mission, and we get a lot of cute dialogue. Things are easier between them. Steve tells Cath that Tani reminds him of her, "she's an army brat, you're a navy brat, you're both good at your job and you both got good hearts." Awww.

They talk about how they were friends before they were in a relationship, and yes, they talk about how sleeping together wasn't good for their friendship, not that it wasn't awesome. Ha! Steve had mentioned to Joe that he was hesitating in asking Cath out because he didn't want to ruin their friendship. And while their relationship hasn't been smooth sailing, I'm glad they didn't lose that foundation!

They have each other's back through the whole mission. There are so many "looks," between them, but especially in the spike pit when her hands are on his shoulders and he's about to boost her up. *le sigh* Their bond is so obviously still there. They also get a chance to clear up the questions she had surrounding the proposal and if he was really going through with it or just thinking about it. He assures her he was going to propose. It was nice to see some of the past being cleared up so they can move forward. And they are actually in really close proximity to each other for nearly that entire episode and working together like they've been partners for years.

At the end, Lou asks him if it was nice to catch up with Cath and he says, "yeah, it was nice," and Lou gives him a look and he grins and says, "What?" the ease and camaraderie is obviously back between them.

Alex O'Loughlin also had this to say about that episode.

"It was great to see Michelle and it was cool to pick up where we left off. It's a great action, travel-y episode with McGarrett and Catherine," O'Loughlin told ET in March. "It's also nice to see these two sharing the same space for a minute and to explore how they feel about each other, how everything is cool [between them]. It was weird for a minute, the way she left -- somebody who's about to get proposed to and they choose an allegiance to the government and national security. It was a big blow for McGarrett. I think this episode served as a gentle closure and reinstated the friendship between the two of them, which was really important."

Really important to reinstate the friendship for the rebuild of something more? Hmmm....

4. We see Cath again after Joe dies, when Steve calls her to help bring in those who were responsible for the hit on Joe and the SEAL team. Once again, the ease between Steve and Cath is there. He confides in her about feeling responsible for Joe's death and she tells him she's in this with him until the end and reassures him that Joe's death isn't his fault. He confides in her about Greer and she is there for him. (We also get them playing a married couple for the mission, which was fun.) In the final scene with Greer, we also have Steve unarmed in front of Greer, totally trusting Cath to have his back. In the end, he tells her how Joe was the one who helped bring her into his life and they are both glad Steve took his advice. They hug, and say a lingering goodbye "until next time."

So, looking back, I can see a pattern of them slowly rebuilding their relationship after the breakup from awkward to the friendship to realizing how much they still trust and rely on each other. Obviously, I'm hoping that Cath will be in the series finale and we'll see that "next time." She was his girlfriend in the beginning, the woman he said "I love you," to and the one he wanted to marry. I want him to have his happily-ever-after and I believe she is the woman he could be happy with. (And so did Freddie, Joe, Aunt Deb, Doris, and Danny).

I can hardly wait for the new episode this Friday!

Friday, March 20, 2020

Freebie Friday for Regency Fans!

This funny meme is going around Facebook this morning



coincidentally, a cute Regency Rapunzel retelling, Maiden in the Tower, by Heidi Kimball is FREE today! (I just started it last night and I'm really enjoying it!) 

Get your free copy HERE 

Here's the back copy:

He's the first man she's ever met. She's the exact opposite of the woman he's supposed to marry.

Lisette Hunt has been hidden away her entire life, with nothing but a large window up in the cottage turret to give her a glimpse of the outside world. Until Gerry Worthington stumbles into her garden in search of his runaway dog.

As a second son, Gerry has never seen the need to take life too seriously. Less than pleased with his frivolity, his mother orders him to marry a woman of means and banishes him to his family’s small, rundown estate. Unfortunately, innocent and penniless Lisette is the very opposite of what he needs.

But Gerry cannot resist the mystery surrounding Lisette, and soon he can no longer resist Lisette and her endearing peculiarity. As Gerry slowly opens Lisette’s eyes to a larger world, she begins to open her heart to him. However, when Gerry uncovers the truth about who Lisette really is, it may cost them a chance at happiness together.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Book Review: Promised

I was really excited to see another new author added to Shadow Mountain's Proper Romance line and this one sounded good!

In Promised, by Leah Garriott, we meet Margaret who has had her heart broken. She decides that she'll never give her heart away again and will be content with a marriage of convenience. She meets a known rake named Mr. Northam and Margaret decides he's the perfect man for her to marry and thus protect her heart. Unfortunately, his cousin, Lord Williams, decides he wants Margaret for his own and offers for her. But Margaret is determined to lock her heart away, no matter how handsome Lord Williams is or how he makes her smile. Will her heart be able to rule her head? Or will it be her undoing?

I loved the hero, Lord Williams. He has such a great character arc as his character is slowly revealed throughout the story. His actions toward Margaret are so puzzling at first, but when all is made clear, I wanted to go back and re-read those parts! Margaret is a stubborn woman who is determined to push away any man who could win her heart. She draws out her own emotional pain by sticking to promises that should have been abandoned long ago (and this does drag down the pacing of the book a bit) but she is relatable and the reader will root for her to see the truth of the situation. I enjoyed Margaret's family and the rest of the secondary cast. The author is skilled at really making them memorable. The setting was easy to imagine, especially the Brinton's estate, and the symbolism of the lake for the characters was particularly well done. This is a book you will finish with all the happy feels. I will definitely look for more by this author!

Get your copy here

Here's the back copy:

Margaret Brinton keeps her promises, and the one she is most determined to keep is the promise to protect her heart.

Fooled by love once before, Margaret vows never to be played the fool again. To keep her vow, she attends a notorious matchmaking party intent on securing the perfect marital match: a union of convenience to someone who could never affect her heart. She discovers a man who exceeds all her hopes in the handsome and obliging rake Mr. Northam.

There's only one problem. His meddling cousin, Lord Williams, won't leave Margaret alone. Condescending and high-handed, Lord Williams lectures and insults her. When she refuses to give heed to his counsel, he single-handedly ruins Margaret's chances for making a good match. With no reason to remain at the party, Margaret returns home to discover her father has promised her hand in marriage—to Lord Williams.

Under no condition will Margaret consent to marrying such an odious man. Yet as Lord Williams inserts himself into her everyday life, Margaret is forced to realize that Lord Williams is exactly the type of man she'd hoped to marry before she'd learned how much love hurt. Margaret is faced with her ultimate choice: keep the promises that protect her or break free of them for one more chance at love. Either way, she fears her heart will lose.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Kindle Unlimited Offer!

⭐️ Heads up! If any of you have ever wanted to try Kindle Unlimited (the Amazon program that lets you read and listen to thousands of books for free) (all my books are in this program and many of my favorite authors) Amazon is offering a two month trial of Kindle Unlimited for FREE.

You can click HERE for more information and to sign up.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Happy St. Patrick's Day AND A Deal!

Happy St. Patrick's Day! I had so much fun setting a leprechaun trap last night with my little boy. Alas, the leprechaun was too smart for us, but he did leave some chocolate gold coins.

If you would like to get in the St. Patrick's Day mood, two out of the six novellas included in Sarah Eden's British Isles collection are set in Ireland! And the collection is on sale today for only .99 cents! 

Get your sale copy HERE

Here's the back copy:

The SARAH M. EDEN BRITISH ISLES COLLECTION contains two brand new historical romance novellas A FRIEND INDEED and A HAPPY BEGINNING, as well as four hand-picked readers’ and reviewers’ favorites of Sarah’s popular Timeless Romance Anthology novellas. Readers will love this selection of six historical romance novellas set in the British Isles.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Freebie Friday for Historical Fiction Fans!

If you enjoy historical fiction, you will love this FREE book, The Girl in Gray. I didn't know much about the Hundred Days War between Finland and Russia before I read this book. I was amazed at how the author can bring these people to life to tell the story of the horrors of that war and how life changes so quickly---nothing is black and white. This is definitely a book that will stay with you long after the last page.

Get your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

A country fighting to stay free.

A woman with an impossible decision.

In November of 1939, Sini Toivola is sure of two things: she loves Marko Linna, and she has a comfortable life in Helsinki. But when the massive Soviet army invades her beloved homeland and Marko spurns her affections, her life is turned upside down. Needing a fresh start, Sini decides to join the female volunteer corps—the Lotta Svärd—and is sent to serve near the front lines. Service at a field hospital proves a good distraction—until Sini discovers a Russian soldier lost behind their camp.

Duty requires her to turn him in, but her heart begs to keep him safe and help him escape. Torn between love for her country and love for her enemy, Sini must choose—but no matter what choice she makes, heart-wrenching consequences await them all.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

.99 Cents Boxed Set Sale for Romantic Suspense Fans!

I know some of us are worried with the world events that are happening, and I wanted to do something for all of you. 

For me, when I am worried, sometimes the best thing I can do is escape into a book. So today I am offering my Canadian Spies boxed set of three action adventure romance stories for only .99 cents and sending it along with a gentle hug from me. 

Get your boxed set here

Stay safe, my friends!

Here's the back copy:

From the ruins of Greece to exotic Turkey, these three action adventure romances will keep you on the edge of your seat with daring operatives that find their chance for love in unexpected places.

Through Love's Trials (Book One)

Attorney Kenneth King can't wait to get away on vacation and leave the courtroom behind. He only has one last errand to do for his boss―drop off a flash drive to fellow attorney Emma James. But as soon as the drive is in his hands, his boss is murdered and Kenneth becomes the next target. With nowhere left to turn, he reaches out to Emma for help―but that only puts them both in danger.

Emma James just wants to settle into her new job and provide a good life for her little girl. That is all threatened when she gets a flash drive with information on it that points to an imminent terrorist attack on U.S. soil. With her choices dwindling and her vulnerabilities made crystal clear, Emma is pushed to the limit by those who want her dead and the rest of the country to suffer. How far will she be forced to go to save the lives of everyone around her, including those she loves?

Kenneth and Emma have to find a way to work together to stop the terrorists, but it's the most difficult trial of their lives―and the verdict will be life or death.

On the Edge (Book Two)

Dylan Campbell, a CSIS officer, has been undercover hundreds of times before and is ready to get out of the game. But before he can tell his bosses at the Canadian spy agency, he discovers a terrorist plot that could take him―and millions of others―out permanently. Getting the information up the chain of command proves complicated, though, when Dylan's cover is blown and he's captured and thrown in an African prison. Will he be the first test subject for the new and deadly virus about to be unleashed on the world?

American CIA officer Elizabeth Spencer is undercover for one reason―to find the virus being weaponized at a private hospital in Africa. When she meets Dylan, a Canadian photojournalist, she uses him to strengthen her story that she's only there to help. But the more she works with Dylan, the more the lines between professional and personal get blurred. She knows better than to get involved with someone while on assignment and the reason for that rule hits home when the terrorists’ move up their timetable and Dylan is put in grave danger. Can she stand by and watch him die?

With everything on the line, Dylan and Elizabeth have one chance to stop the terrorist attack before it reaches North America―but they have to make it to Greece. Can they break Dylan out of prison and stay alive long enough to prevent the release of the virus? Or will one or the other be called upon to offer the ultimate sacrifice?

Time Will Tell (Book Three)

Undercover operative Jason Wright and his partner Kamal were left for dead in Iran---casualties of a war on terror. But Jason survived and he's out for revenge. He's selling his country's secrets to the highest bidder and he doesn't care who gets it---as long as he gets paid and Kamal's death is avenged.

Andrew Blythe, a Canadian CSIS agent, races against time to stop the information exchange, knowing that a dangerous terrorist organization will use it to gain control of the Baku oil leases in the Caspian Sea. With those leases, they will be able to finance a weapon of mass destruction---and kill thousands of innocent people.

But things don't go as planned and Andrew finds himself wounded and on the run, unsure of who to trust. Desperate, he takes Ashton Carlson's car, and pulls her into the web of espionage that is tightening like a noose around him. Forced to keep her with him for safety's sake, Andrew isn't prepared for the feelings she stirs in him. But with danger around every turn, Andrew knows time is running out for both of them. Can he stop the terrorists' plans and keep Ashton from being killed? Or will he have to make the ultimate sacrifice to save them all?

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Book Review: Lakeshire Park

I was so lucky to get an advanced copy of Lakeshire Park, Megan Walker's addition to the Proper Romance line. I loved it!

Amelia Moore is in a bad situation. Her mother has passed away, leaving them in the care of their stepfather who wants to wash his hands of both Amelia and her sister. She has one last chance to save them both by encouraging an attachment between Clara and Sir Ronald. Luckily, Sir Ronald invites them to a house party which is the perfect opportunity to cement the match. Unfortunately, the arrogant Mr. Peter Wood also wants a match between Sir Ronald and his sister. It becomes a sort of competition and Peter and Amelia are thrown into some circumstances that are fun and funny! 

I thought the author did an amazing job with the wit between the characters and still held true to the society rules and expected decorum of the regency period. I loved the chemistry between Amelia and Peter and the building attraction between them. There is a good character arc as Amelia realizes that her judgments may not always be correct and Peter also sees things in a different way the longer he knows Amelia. I really enjoyed the ending and all the twists and turns Amelia had on her journey to love, as well as her sister Clara. The secondary cast was well-rounded and there were several characters that I hope to see in future books. Ms. Walker is definitely an author I would love to read again! Don't miss this one!

You can get your copy here

Here's the back copy:

Brighton, England 1820

Amelia Moore wants only one thing--to secure the future happiness of her younger sister, Clara. With their stepfather's looming death, the two sisters will soon be on their own--without family, a home, or a penny to their names. When an invitation arrives to join a house party at Lakeshire Park, Amelia grasps at the chance. If she can encourage a match between Clara and their host, Sir Ronald, then at least her sister will be taken care of.

Little does she know that another guest, the arrogant and overconfident Mr. Peter Wood, is after the same goal for his own sister. Amelia and Peter begin a rivalry that Amelia has no choice but to win. But competing against Peter--and eventually playing by his rules--makes Amelia vulnerable to losing the only thing she has left to claim: her heart.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Book Review: The Masked Baron

The Masked Baron starts out with such a great setting and atmosphere, it almost came across as a gothic mystery. There were some elements of a Beauty and the Beast retelling, but the author definitely made the story her own. I was interested to find out how the mystery of the witch would unfold and who would ultimately solve it and really enjoyed seeing how the secondary cast of friends and servants rallied around the hero and heroine. (I hope the author does another story that gives Ellison's best friend a book of his own!)

Unfortunately, I had a really hard time enjoying the romance in this one. "Annie" is Ellison's ward and she seems very young throughout the story. The romance with her guardian, who seems much older, just didn't work for me at all. There were also quite a few story elements that just didn't make sense and were not believable, which I think could have been solved with one more thorough edit. With that said, however, I do have to say the author does a wonderful job with the mystery and the setting portion and I wouldn't mind trying another book by her.

Get your copy here

Here is the back copy:

Andalin is accustomed to her father’s frequent travels—and to being left behind. So when he returns home and instructs her to pack her belongings, she is bewildered—but there is no time for questions as she is whisked away on a mysterious journey under the cover of night. When their tense flight leads them into the forbidding Black Forest, the pair quickly finds themselves in great peril. With little hope of escape, father and daughter are spared when rescue appears in the form of the mysterious Dark Rider, a notorious deadly highwayman feared by all he meets. But his assistance does not come without a price: he is taking Andalin with him. Now her fate rests in the hands of the enigmatic masked man whose secrets are inescapably tied to the beautiful young woman now in his charge.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Freebie Friday for Historical Romance Fans!

If you want to get in the spirit of St. Patrick's Day, you can get Heidi Ashworth's historical romance, O'er the River Liffey for free today!

Get your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

Irish heiress Caroline Fulton knows this house party, ostensibly celebrating the victory of Waterloo, is really an audition: will she make a suitable wife? Her host, an English lord, has already won over her father, who’s determined to buy a title with Caroline’s dowry. She is far from taken with the baron, however, especially once she meets Niall Doherty, the impoverished, perceptive tutor to her host’s younger brothers. He shares her love of Irish fairy tales and seems to guard a troubled past…but neither quality will earn Caroline’s father’s approval.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

In The Non-Fiction Corner: Enlightened

In the Non-Fiction Corner
With Lauren

Enlightened is about one woman's personal journey in studying the scriptures. The author does have some good ideas and it's an interesting read. However, I found that many of her stories didn't really fit with the point she is trying to get across and would likely be better as an addition to her personal family history. She also had very consistent reminders for readers to take notes on what she was saying, but the repetition made me think of an elementary school teacher's constant reminders to follow instructions. With that said, however, I did enjoy the overall message of the book that we should all find our own unique way to study the scriptures. 

You can get your copy here

Here is the back copy:

Is it Time?

Kathryn Elizabeth Jones has been a lover of journaling since the time she was a teenager. But the journaling that began as a keeper of secret thoughts, daily activities, and hopes and dreams of the future, one day changed direction in focus and feeling the moment she realized what personal revelation could truly mean for her.

Although personal scripture reading began at about the same time, it was much later, while Kathryn was reflecting on the power of the Kirtland Temple dedication, that the Lord’s voice was heard, and Kathryn wrote of the experience.

Connecting personal revelation to scripture study and prayer as a conduit for an even stronger relationship with Jesus Christ, is the premise of this book.

May it enlighten your life and may your own path be made clear as you take the Lord’s hand, listen to His words, and follow His voice.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Book Review: Willa and the Whale

Willa and the Whale is a tender and poignant story about Willa, a twelve-year-old girl who has lost her marine biologist mother and is now living with her father and stepmother. She's trying to deal with the ocean of grief she's swimming in, but is struggling, until she meets Meg, a whale who can talk to her. (I loved Meg! So fun.)

I really enjoyed Willa's voice in this story. It's so authentic! The authors have done a magnificent job of really portraying the life of a young girl dealing with grief and family and school issues. I loved all the symbolism with the ocean, the secondary characters, especially Willa's friend Marc. Chad Morris and Shelly Brown just have such a way of touching a reader's heart.

I loved Willa's journal entries and how she begins to learn to cope with her grief with the help of Meg. The authors address difficult topics in such a sensitive way and combine it with just enough lightheartedness that it doesn't feel heavy. I think this is the perfect book to read with tweens and teens, not only for the entertainment value (who hasn't wanted to talk to a whale!) but it is sure to spark some good conversations about how to deal with grief and loss and that there is always hope, no matter what.

This is another one for our keeper shelf!

Get your copy here

Here's the back copy:

Can a whale talk to a human? Willa thinks so . .

After losing her mom, Willa is grieving and having a hard time living with her dad and his new family on an island off the coast of Washington State. Her dad tries to cheer her up by taking her whale watching, something Willa's mom used to do.

While all the passengers are on one side of the boat, Willa encounters a humpback whale on the opposite side. Willa feels so lonely that she starts to talk to the whale—and the whale talks back!
The whale, named Meg, quickly becomes a trusted friend and confidante Willa can speak to whenever she's by the ocean.

Meg offers sound advice Willa needs about dealing with a nemesis at school and trying to figure out why her friend Marc is keeping secrets about his family life.

Before the story ends, it will take all of Willa's courage and connections to tackle a problem that's as big as a blue whale!

About the Authors: 

SHELLY BROWN was born in the Northwest and grew up near the ocean. It’s a part of her. She can surf and point out all sorts of sea creatures and plants (though not necessarily at the same time.) Now that she lives in the mountains, she has saved money, planned, and taken Chad and their five kids to both coasts to swim, surf, search tide pools, snorkel, and watch sea lions, seals, turtles, whales, and more. Her soul speaks ocean.

Growing up, CHAD MORRIS was fascinated by blue whales. He read books about the world’s largest creature and did grade school reports on them. He drew pictures of them and taped them to his wall (the pictures, not whales—that would be impossible). He would love to see a blue whale in real life, but he’d rather not meet a Bobbitt or zombie worm. Seriously, he’d prefer his bones not become jelly.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Hawaii Five-0 Recap & Review: The One With The Dead Pirate

We found out last Friday that Hawaii Five-0 won't be returning next season. I am so sad! It seems sudden and I'm worried they won't have a chance to wrap up the storylines in a satisfying way. Not to mention I'm going to miss this show. I've watched from the very first episode and it doesn't seem like it's already been ten years. The show had a great run and I will definitely miss it.

We start out with Adam in the previouslies again, showing his footage of Kenji killiing Haru and Endo and  Kenji lying, saying he sent them to Japan, then cut to the masked SUV guys coming for him with guns.

Our next scene is at McG's home, where he is ironing again and Danny is watching. Our SuperSEAL likes ironing and just wants to iron in peace, but Danny can't resist needling him, telling him to invest in wrinkle-free clothes. McG brushes him off with, "Is it boring being as predictable as you are?" (Oddly, he says he's going on a date with Emma now, but isn't she the vet who said she was dating someone during Eddie's PTSD ep? Weird. And last week it was Brooke. Something's fishy there.) Junior comes in and asks McG to leave the iron out because he has a date, too. McG thinks it's great Junior and Tani are giving it a go. Steve gets a phone call that shots were fired at Adam's building and Grover is on the way. Uh oh.

Grover gets to Adam's place and sees the Yakuza dead bodies near the door. Adam is bloody, but okay. (Since Adam took out most of the Yakuza sent after them when they kidnapped Tamiko, I would think when the henchmen found out they were assigned to go over to Adam's place, they would be, um, hey, can I have a different assignment? Please. Ha!) Adam tells Lou that Kenji sent them and they need to take Kenji and his crew down now. Lou wants to get him somewhere safe, but Adam grabs his SD card and admits that he's been trying to dismantle Kenji's operation for months and finally has the evidence to do it.

Cue music.

SWAT is on their way to Kenji's. Kenji is bailing, grabbing money and passports and a gun out of his safe while SWAT rolls up. His terrible-decision-making crew opens the door and start firing while Kenji runs away. Adam gives chase to Kenji (and he's already cleaned up and changed clothes. Maybe in the SWAT truck?) However, Adam has a light on his gun that announces his position to Kenji so Kenji nearly picks him off. Junior and Lou are holding off the other Yakuza back at the house and Kenji is running across a stream and up a hill. (You know, I'm wondering where Tamiko is. We haven't seen her for ages? Did they break up?) Adam is right behind him, but when he gets to the top of the hill, Kenji tackles him. They fight, each trying to grab the gun and Adam wins and shoots Kenji in the shoulder. Kenji tells him to finish it, but Adam wants to hear him say Masuda. Kenji smiles and says, yeah, I killed Masuda and you and your girlfriend would have been next had Tokyo not intervened. Adam is shaking, but doesn't pull trigger and instead, calls for EMTs. He taunts Kenji that he was playing him, working for Five-0 the whole time and now he has footage of Kenji executing Endo and Haru. He's going away and will never get out! Kenji doesn't look worried and says he'll talk and he has a lot to say about Adam, so how can he let him live? Adam says he'll take his chances. (Well, he's pretty, but no one said he was smart.)

Back in Maui Noelani is headed to her uncle's wake. She briefly talks to her parents who accept a donation to her uncle's church from a councilman since the uncle was a pastor who helped a lot of kids get out of gangs and get clean. Her parents think her profession is weird since she works with dead bodies and they sort of just woodenly stand there through the whole thing. Noelani gives up and goes to pay her respects. While looking at the body in the coffin, she notices a red rash on her uncle's wrists.

Adam has been called to the boss's office. Steve is sitting there with him, dumbfounded about Adam's plan to dismantle the Yakuza from within and spy on Five-0. Adam assures Steve he only gave the Yakuza morsels to keep them on the hook while he gathered evidence. Steve seems more upset that Adam lied to him multiple times, even though he had several chances to come clean. Adam is all, yeah, you would have said it was too dangerous and shut it down, so he did what he had to do. Steve is feeling a bit of righteous anger and tells him that wasn't his call to make because Adam risked the reputation of the entire unit and that's something Steve has to answer for. Adam says Steve can take his badge if he wants, he'll understand, but Steve snaps back with, "if I want your badge, I'll take your badge!" He tells Adam to go down to HPD and debrief the organized crime division and tell them everything he knows. (Steve is wearing a very nice blue shirt for this scene.) Before Adam leaves, Steve gets a call. A freighter two miles off coast was attacked and the crew were taken hostage. The captain was shot dead and, according to crew, it was the Coast Guard who attacked them! Dun, dun, dun.

Steve, Danny, Junior, and Tani fly out there and interview a crew member. He thought it was a routine check, they had Coast Guard uniforms and badges, and their skiff was skinned to make it look like the real deal. But once they were on board it was guns out and they ordered them on the ground. They locked the crew in the cabin and ordered the captain to take them down to the safe, so that's where everyone heads to next. There are some shell casings near the captain's body, so he got a couple of shots off before he was killed. There was payroll and petty cash in the safe, but only around 20-50 grand. The crew member gets dismissed so the team can spitball possible reasons a gang would go to so much trouble for less than fifty grand when the cargo was worth millions. Maybe they were just getting started with the safe when the captain fired and they bailed? Right in the middle, Noelani calls Steve and says she needs his help. The family was told her uncle died of a heart attack, but a rash on his arm doesn't jive with a cardiac event and it wasn't mentioned in the coroner report. The coroner won't give her the time of day and she wants the truth. Steve will send Quinn to help her out so they can get to the bottom of it. (I was surprised his cell phone worked in the bottom of the ship.)

Junior finds a fresh blood trail and shows Steve. If the captain fired his weapon and hit one of the pirates, his crew could have left him for dead and he could still be hiding on the ship. They split up to go look for him, guns drawn. Tani and Junior are going door to door and he's sorry he had to cancel their date. They were both looking forward to it. Tani goes into a kitchen area and gets a knife thrown at her, then attacked with a fire extinguisher. She fights with the pirate and the door closes and locks so Junior can't get to her. He's yelling for Steve, quickly escalating from Boss! to McGarrett! while Tani is getting her head pushed toward a hot grill. She whacks the guy with a pan, and while she's going for her gun he throws her around, she kicks him and breaks a coffeepot over his head. (In the real world she wouldn't have stood a chance. That guy was huge compared to her.) McG and Junior work together to kick the door in and hear shots fired. They rush in and Tani is standing there, saying she found him. (Loved Junior's emotion and protectiveness in the scene.)

Noelani and Quinn go visit the CrankyCoroner. He's not happy to see him, but Quinn shows her badge and they start asking questions like how did he fail to notice an obvious rash on the pastor uncle's body? When Quinn threatens to arrest him, he caves and said he saw the rash, but someone approached him in the parking lot and said if he didn't say the uncle died of a heart attack, something bad would happen to him. Since he was too scared to go to the police, he just didn't mention the rash. The rash indicates carbon monoxide poisoning, but if it was a suicide, then why cover it up? They're going to need a description of the man who threatened CrankyCoroner and footage of the parking lot.

The gang is back at the Chatting Table, and Lou tells them he got satellite images of the freighter during the attack and guess what? The pirates loaded a crate from the ship! But HPD went through the ship's inventory and it was all accounted for, so something was smuggled onto the freighter with legit cargo. Well, if the pirates knew there was something smuggled onto the ship, they had to have an inside man. Since they ID'd the pirate Tani killed, Kyle Munoz, they're going to look for any connections he had to someone on the crew. And Tunior will also look into boats that fit the pirate boat description.

Quinn easily finds the man who threatened the coroner and it's Eke, a guy who just got out of prison for trying to kill Noelani's uncle a decade ago. They go see him and he says that back in the day they ran with bad crews and when someone was a rival gang member, you retaliated and thought of them as the enemy. He was shocked that Noelani's uncle wrote to him in prison that he forgave him and turned his life around told him so could he. It gave him hope, but why did he threaten CrankyCoroner? Well, the day Uncle died, he invited Eke over, but didn't answer the door. Eke went around back and could hear the car running in the garage. Uncle was in the driver's seat with a hose from the tailpipe to the window. Eke cleaned up the evidence and insisted CrankyCoroner declare it a heart attack so that his legacy wouldn't be suicide. He gave so many people hope, how would they feel knowing he took his own life? Noelani doesn't believe Uncle would commit suicide, so they're going to his house to check it out.

Lou found a link between dead Kyle and the crew member they talked to, Karl Lawson. Karl and Kyle! Besties! They went to high school together and phone records confirm they were in touch last week and Karl was getting wire transfers from overseas accounts for the last three years. So, in a confusing twist, Steve tries to explain that Karl calls Kyle to put a crew together and pull off the heist, then Karl tells his smuggler friends the boat was hit by a pirate attack. They want to talk to Karl, and we see him in the back of an HPD squad car when they are rammed and Karl is kidnapped by masked men. Poor dumb Karl. When the team looks at footage of the kidnapping, with the way Karl is struggling it obviously wasn't a rescue attempt (how did they know when he would be transferred?) But the team guesses the kidnappers are the smugglers Karl was working for and they want their stuff. Oh, and Tunior didn't have any luck looking for the boat the pirates used so now they're going to look for the people who gave it a makeover.

Back at her uncle's house, Noelani is looking at pictures and remembering good times. CSU is running the garden hose for prints while Noelani is confiding to Quinn that her parents already don't approve of her job, how will they react if her looking into this reveals that her uncle really did commit suicide? Quinn tells her that her brother Brian committed suicide and her family never talked about it at all and it made things worse. Brian's life was so much more than the way he died and the same thing goes for the uncle. No matter what they find, she should remember that.

Tani is at the Magnum PI friend's bar, (what was his name again?) anyway, the guy is sad that Quinn didn't come. Tani will put a good word in for him in exchange for the favor of calling Oz the Boat Makeover Guy down. She tells some story to Oz that she's been dating a guy and things aren't working out so she wants to secure his boat and have it skinned for ten grand. He agrees and she pulls out her handcuffs and puts him under arrest. She asks him for info on a client that made him skin a boat to look like the Coast Guard. He doesn't remember at first, but when she threatens him with a holding cell, he suddenly recalls that she's looking for Michael Garcia.

Quinn tells Noelani that there was only one set of prints on the hose and they are Eke's but that's weird her uncle's weren't on it. Unless someone wiped down the hose before Eke found the body. They can't think of anyone that would want to kill the uncle, so they find a kid named Lewis through phone records that Uncle helped. Noelani tells the kid she just wants to find out what happened to her uncle and the kid says he told the uncle too much and that's why Uncle is dead. There's a guy on the city council who is big in the drug game on the island and Uncle knew him. It was the councilman who gave the donation at Uncle's wake! The councilman tells the gangs where to sell and the cops won't bother them and in return they cut him in. Lewis wanted out of this life and Uncle made him feel like he could change, but because he talked Uncle is dead and he's next. Quinn assures him they're going to do their jobs and make sure the councilman can't hurt anyone ever again.

Steve, Danny, Junior, and Lou are all approaching Michael Garcia's house with guns drawn. They go in and find all the dead pirates still in Coast Guard uniforms. It looks like their mouths were foaming and they don't have any gunshot wounds. The powder all over the table and cupboards probably isn't heroin, so Steve calls for backup and a HAZMAT team. But instead, they get black SUVs and gunmen that start shooting at them! The guys duck under the table, but powder is floating into the air with the bullets and Danny doesn't want to be in the room with the powder that killed the people. LOL Back up is ten minutes out so Steve and Junior start picking off the smugglers. They get out of the house and Danny is coughing on the ground when another smuggler shows and Steve shoots him, nearly deafening Danny. When the EMTs get there, Steve gets some oxygen and they talk about how Lawson thought he was ripping off a little heroin, but that stuff is actually a synthetic opiod with a really long name that is ten thousand times stronger than morphine and was banned from the chemical weapons convention. It's that dangerous, which explains Steve's pounding headache. So the pirates went to all that trouble to steal that booty only to have it kill them. Tani lightens the mood with a little joke: Why are pirates called pirates? Cuz they ARRGGGH. No one laughs and she says, "Come on. That was solid." (Cute scene.)

Quinn and Noelani meet up with the CrookedCouncilman and show him the donation envelope he gave earlier. It's evidence now and the DNA on it matched the DNA on the teacup found in Uncle's kitchen. The second teacup had traces of roofies in it, so when Uncle found out the councilman was dirty, he confronted him and told him he needed to come clean and he would help. The councilman drugged him instead, then helped him to the car and ran the hose from the exhaust pipe to the window to make it look like a suicide. But he didn't count on Uncle having helped so many people that some of them were willing to help him in return. CrookedCouncilman gets cuffed and taken away. Noelani's parents awkwardly come up and pat her on the back and say they're proud of her and Uncle would be, too. Then we get a cemetery scene with Lewis and Eke there, too, and people laying roses on the coffin.

Back at the Magnum PI guy's bar, Quinn brings Noelani for just one drink and the team is there! It helps her feel better. Danny says Steve is buying the next round and Steve says he will he just needs to go home and get his wallet. Ha! He's been saying the same thing for ten years. Aww. The band takes a break and Backstreet Boys come on, which was Quinn's jam in fifth grade. The Magnum PI guy comes up and gets introduced to everyone and he offers the next round on the house. He and Quinn talk about the dinner he owes her and Noelani suggests they dance. Apparently, he's a much better dancer than dart player, so Quinn says to show her what he's got. Tunior are watching, think they can take them with dance moves, but they won't give away their best stuff right off. So everyone is on the floor dancing to Everybody Rock Your Body while Steve, Lou, and Noelani watch. A very sweet scene.

I thought it was a good episode overall, I'm mostly just sad that this is one of the very last ones ever! Did you watch? What did you think?

Monday, March 2, 2020

It's Dr. Seuss Day!

Are you celebrating Dr. Seuss today? I love that he has his own day. He was such an influence on kids and young readers and his stories are so timeless!

What is your favorite Dr. Seuss book? I think mine is Horton Hears a Who. There's just something so sweet about that story. They're all just fun, though, and ones I don't mind reading twice for a bedtime story. What about you? 

(And if you are looking for my Hawaii Five-0 review, that will be coming tomorrow!) 

Friday, February 28, 2020

Freebie Friday for Historical Romance Fans!

I am definitely ready to snuggle up with a good book this weekend. If you are a historical romance fan, Sally Britton's book, Miss Devon's Choice is free today and it looks good!

Get your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

A scarred and lonely viscount and an independent young woman are forced into an arranged marriage. What hope do they have for a happily ever after?

Rebecca Devon lives under the severe eye of her aunt and the iron will of her father. Though she wears what she is told and befriends the people they choose for her, she spends every moment longing to do as she wishes. Knowing freedom will only come through marriage, her hopes for a happy union are stolen away when her father arranges her marriage to a complete stranger.

Christian Hundley, Lord Easton, has learned the hard way that English society won't accept a person who looks or behaves differently than their ideal. He has hidden himself away from scornful eyes for years, until his aging grandfather takes matters in hand and finds Christian a bride. Knowing he must agree to the marriage, Christian shields his heart. If the whole of society cannot accept him, why should his bride?

Rebecca knows she must have love in her life, but Christian is convinced there is nothing so fraught with danger and pain as entrusting one’s heart to another. Rebecca does everything she can to change his mind, but Christian is determined to remain aloof. Can an arranged marriage ever be anything other than a business partnership?

Thursday, February 27, 2020

What I'm Reading Now (I'm So Excited!)

When I first saw that one of my favorite authors, Nancy Campbell Allen, was writing steampunk fairytale retellings, I wasn't sure I would like those stories. But since I loved Nancy's writing, I decided to try them and I'm so glad I did!

This series is amazing and I just got an Advanced Copy of the new one coming out, Brass Carriages and Glass Slippers. I couldn't wait to start reading, so I stayed up late last night. It is SO good! I don't know how I'm going to get anything done today when all I want to do is keep reading. (I'm right at the good part!) Definitely do not miss this one.

You can preorder your copy here

Here's the back copy:

A steampunk retelling of Cinderella.

Emmeline O&;Shea has been an outspoken advocate for the shapeshifter community, which has come under unjust attack from a political body known as the PSRC (Predatory Shifter Regulations Committee), and her robust efforts have landed her a prestigious position as the spokesperson for the International Shifter Rights Organization. She has been selected to give the final address in Scotland before they vote on legislation that will grant protective rights to the shifter community. Because she is fundamentally changing the laws, she is also receiving death threats.

Oliver Reed is a by-the-book detective-inspector who has dealt with Emme&;s borderline-illegal activism in the past, and there is little love lost between the two. When his superior tasks Oliver with guarding Emme around the clock to keep her safe until the summit is over, he is frustrated. He has several open cases requiring his attention, and his spare time is occupied with chasing down leads about the whereabouts of his brother, Vincent, a rogue vampire bent on causing trouble in Scotland.

When their airship is hijacked, Emme and Oliver are forced to parachute away before they exit British soil. They take refuge in Emme&;s family&;s hunting lodge where Oliver is introduced to her abusive stepsisters.

Together the pair must make their way to Edinburgh so as not to miss the summit meeting where Emme will be key in helping to pass legislation that will disband the corrupt PSRC. But between her vindictive sisters and Oliver&;s rogue vampire brother, they face danger at every turn, not to mention dealing with their growing attraction for each other.

When Emme is kidnapped &; leaving behind only one shoe as evidence &; Oliver must find her before it&;s too late &; and the summit ends at midnight.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Book Review: The Wish and the Peacock

Since I still have young children at home about the age of the heroine in The Wish and the Peacock, I was excited to read this book with them. The story was so well-told and the underlying message a poignant reminder of what's important---that change will happen, but home is with the people you love.

Paige is a very relatable character. She's trying so hard to deal with the grief of losing her father and wanting to do all she can to hang on to the family farm and keep her promise to her dad. She's balancing a lot in her young life with her problems at home and school and friends. Then, her brother Scotty finds a wounded peacock that she wants to take care of, and once she finds out her mom and grandpa are going to sell the farm, she keeps the peacock a secret. Paige is determined to do everything she can to make sure the farm doesn't get sold---including resorting to some really funny, and yet awful, sabotage schemes.

I loved Paige's reactions and thought her growth arc was realistic and sweet. Though the book dealt with a grief theme, there are definitely some laugh out loud moments as well as some tender ones to create a heartwarming story with charming characters. The author has also drawn a wonderful secondary cast with Paige's friends, her mom, her Grandpa, and her brother. The peacock itself is such a great symbol and plays an understated role in the story, yet is central to the message. While the book is not preachy at all, I definitely will be thinking about what things I'm hanging onto in my life that may be holding me back, just like a peacock's tail can do the same for them if they don't let it go. This is such an inspiring and entertaining read! It's definitely a book I will read with my children again. The Wish and the Peacock has earned a special place on our keeper shelf!

Get your copy here

Here is the back copy:

Paige's favorite family tradition on the farm is the annual bonfire where everyone tosses in a stone and makes a wish. This time, Paige's specific wish is one she's not sure can come true: Don't let Mom and Grandpa sell the farm.

When Paige's younger brother finds a wounded peacock in the barn, Paige is sure it's a sign that if she can keep the bird safe, she'll keep the farm safe too. Peacocks, after all, are known to be fierce protectors of territory and family.

With determination and hard work, Paige tries to prove she can save the farm on her own, but when a real estate agent stakes a "For Sale" sign at the end of the driveway and threatens everything Paige loves, she calls on her younger brother and her best friends, Mateo and Kimana, to help battle this new menace. They may not have street smarts, but they have plenty of farm smarts, and some city lady who's scared of spiders should be easy enough to drive away.

But even as the peacock gets healthier, the strain of holding all the pieces of Paige's world together gets harder. Faced with a choice between home and family, she risks everything to make her wish come true, including the one thing that scares her the most: letting the farm go.