Friday, November 30, 2018

Friday Freebie for Romance Fans!

It's a Taylor Hart week! Her cute billionaire romance, The Christmas Groom, is free today! It looks like a fun, fluffy weekend read.

You can download your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

Nathan Pennington, aka billionaire attorney, had only one idea on his mind the week before Christmas…forget about the past year and enjoy the beautiful Park City ski slopes. His plan was working, until some annoying ski bunny sprayed snow in his face. Her rudeness wasn’t something he could let slide. Nathan chases the woman down the hill intent on chewing her out, but when face-to-face, he’s struck by the vulnerability and anger in her eyes.

Storm Goodman has heard every weather joke in the book—and she’s not in the mood for another. Lately her life has lived up to her name. After a year of personal setbacks in her skiing career and her grandfather passing, she thought the worst of it was over until Four days before Christmas her lawyer tells her she can’t inherit the ranch her grandfather left her—unless she’s married by noon on Christmas day. Good thing she has a guy to marry—too bad he’s also the same guy who cheated on her last year. She’ll have to put up with him if she wants to keep the land from being turned over to the BLM.

When a mysterious guy shows up, chewing her out for spraying snow on him, she never would have imagined she’d end up on a date with him. Or kiss him! Why does her life have such rotten timing? After night skiing, soaking in the hot tub, and dancing at an old folk’s home, Storm begins to wonder if she can really go through with the marriage to her ex.

Now she and Nathan are faced with a choice—walk away or let the timing of love sync up once and for all.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

The Festival of Trees Was Amazing!

My daughter got to perform with her dance team in a charity event called the Festival of Trees so we went to support her and the event as a family. I'd never been to the festival before and I was completely blown away.

An entire expo center is filled with donated and uniquely decorated Christmas trees. Each tree has a story, some of them are in memory of a family member that passed away, some are themed with princesses, Marvel characters, the Grinch, you name it! Each tree was so fantastic and beautiful. I was so surprised at how much time and effort had to go into decorating something like that. In the video, you can see a Santa figure climbing the ladder! There were so many little details like that, showing off the creativity of those who put it all together.

The trees are then auctioned off and the money is donated to the children at Primary Children's Hospital. It's such a worthy cause and we had so much fun walking around and looking at all the incredible trees. They also had Santa available for pictures, sweet shops, and gingerbread masterpieces to look at as well. I know I'll be going back next year!

Do you have charity events like that where you live?

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Taylor Hart's New Christmas Romance Only .99 Cents Today!


  How much would you bet on true love this Christmas season? After the worst year of his life, Cameron Cruz, owner of the Denver Storm, agrees to a family Christmas cruise with his twin sister and her family. Sure, maybe part of the reason he agreed to go was because it got him out of court mandated therapy for a week. Still, he was trying to focus on relaxing. He was trying to focus on having fun. He was trying not to look at the reports that came everyday from the private investigator's he'd been hiring and firing for the past year to bring justice to the man who killed his wife. 

Isabel Kind was only on this Christmas cruise for one reason--to heal. After tragically losing her husband and son five years ago, she'd been stuck. And she and her therapist thought doing the list of excursions they'd planned to do as a family--might help her move on. When she sprains her ankle and Cameron Cruz offers to help her, she finds herself accepting. After reluctantly getting piggy backed around by the amazingly strong and handsome man, swimming with the sting rays, and zip lining through the Honduran jungles, she is more and more mystified by this troubled man. Even more mystified that he's not only helping her physically but he's also trying to help her emotionally--even if, as he says, he can't heal himself. When bad news comes to light and Cameron has to face the past, they are left with a choice--walk away or let the power of grace make them whole.

Grab your copy for just 99 cents today!

  Praise for The Midnight Groom Grief is real and hard. Taylor Heart does a beautiful job of honoring that pain while showing us Cameron's way through it. Their story is beautiful with just the right amount of laughter and hope and, as always, grace. A perfect read when you want to cuddle up with a story that will fill you with peace. The Midnight Groom is a wonderfully entertaining love story that will inspire you to be a better person! I thought the struggle and the healing felt real. This book was a roller coaster ride for my emotions.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

When You're Alone With Your Book

As a mother of eight children, I am rarely alone, but when I am, it really is a giddy feeling! Haha! Can anyone else relate?

Monday, November 26, 2018

Cyber Monday Deals for Romantic Suspense and Regency Fans!

Two newly released books (they just barely came out!) that I really enjoyed and could hardly put down are on sale today only for $1.99!


The Gem Thief is full of intrigue and romance and is set in exotic locations that will make you feel like you're right there with the characters! I loved this one!

Here's the back copy:

Gracie Miller is a small-town girl who has landed her dream job in New York City. As jewelry designer for one of the most prestigious jewelers in the world, she completed a particularly stunning piece, a custom setting for a large diamond. But when her billionaire client Mrs. Katsaros comes to have a minor issue with the setting repaired, Gracie is horrified to realize it is not the ring she created. Someone has forged her design, and the priceless diamond is gone.

Mrs. Katsaros has no desire to bring media attention to the jewelry heist, so she recruits her nephew, Quinn, and his FBI agent friend, Steve, to do some sleuthing off the record. When they discover that the missing ring is just one of many forgeries in the widow’s collection, they look to Gracie for help. They need her to act the part of Quinn’s fiancĂ©e. From the lights of New York to the shimmering islands of the Mediterranean, Gracie is swept into a thrilling hunt. But amid the search for the elusive thief, she and Quinn find themselves increasingly distracted by their growing feelings for each other. What neither realizes is how close the danger lies and how serious the vendetta is—because, apparently, it is worth killing for.

You can get your sale copy here

The Truth About Miss Ashbourne is such a sweet story of rags to riches with a swoon-worthy hero and a heroine that will have you rooting for her to get her happily ever after. It was so good!

Here's the back copy:

Governess Juliana Ashbourne has dreams reaching far beyond the confines of her current position, hoping to someday establish her own school for girls. When she inherits a fortune from her late grandfather, she is shocked to learn that "someday" may soon be within reach. However, there is one condition: she must spend a month at the estate of Havenfield--with the very family who disowned her mother. Intent on securing the money she needs to start her school, Juliana accepts the invitation, vowing to guard her heart against those who shunned her all her life.

But Havenfield is far from what she expects. She discovers a grandmother seeking forgiveness, a cold and disapproving aunt, and a painfully shy cousin. And then there is Mr. William Rowley. Though the heir to the estate is a merciless tease, Juliana finds in him a friend and confidant--and perhaps something more. As she struggles to make sense of her new place in the world, her stubborn independence clashes with a yearning to belong and the even more confusing desires of her heart.

You can get your sale copy here

You won't want to miss this deal!

Friday, November 23, 2018

New Christmas Romance & A $50 Giveaway!

Taylor Dean has a new book out!
Violin Words by Taylor Dean 

WHO IS THE AUTHOR? When Jade Lockwood begins to receive anonymous love letters, she becomes a woman on a mission. She’s determined to figure out who wrote the flowery, over-the-top letters filled with the sweetest violin words she’s ever heard. She’s neglected her love life, concentrating on Lockwood Cabins, the business her father built from the ground up. But her sweet letters have awakened something inside of her, something that can’t be ignored. Facing Christmas alone this year, her emotions are already fragile. Add in a mysterious burglary, a handsome stranger, and a little deceit, and it just might be the most eventful Christmas she’s ever endured. Will Jade find her happy ending? Or will her love letters prove to be nothing more than a sinister ploy? Find out in this charming Christmas novel. 


Praise: Don’t miss this fun, perfect holiday read by a master storyteller! -Mylissa Demeyere, Author of The Songs of You and Me and The Songs that Brought Me Back

 A sweet, heartwarming romance with a twist of mystery and suspense, all wrapped up in Christmas magic that makes this one hard to put down. -Charissa Stastny, Author of The Ruled Out Romance Series



You are in my heart, Jade, and you always will be. You’ve had a profound effect upon my life. Just the knowledge of your existence renews my faith in the human experience. There is joy in this world. And you are it. ME SIGNED ME. THAT’S it. Just Me. I have no idea who Me is. Wondering about The Author of my flowery, over-the-top letter consumes my thoughts. I can hardly think of anything else. As I sit at my desk—reading the letter when I should be tackling mounds of paperwork—I can’t help but sigh. The letter fills me with a warm sensation, a feeling as though my heart is about to explode. I’m addicted to reading it. Over and over again.   Excerpt #2: I have no clue whatsoever as to The Author of the one and only love letter I’ve ever received. I’ve neglected my love life, giving all of my attention to Lockwood Cabins. Now I realize what a mistake that has been. When I read the letter, I’m filled with sensations I didn’t know existed. It’s as if I can physically feel the depth behind his words. I’m taken away to another world and I just want to float away, wrapped in his love. The Author’s words are flowery and eloquent, stirring and moving. They’re as lyrical and achingly sweet as a few strokes from a violin. Violin words. Yes. My letter is filled with violin words. All meant for me. And I love them. A few simple chords from a violin inspires soul soaring emotion within me and leaves me breathless. Somehow the sound speaks to me and I have to close my eyes and thank God that I’m alive, if only to hear such a precious sound. But when I read my love letter, my reaction is the same. Words alone have never had this effect on me. Plain and simple words—twenty-six letters all strung together in thousands of combinations—and together they form the most beautiful thoughts. I hold the letter to my chest and absorb the love. It’s the sweetest torture, the most exquisite agony. I welcome it. To feel is to live, I know that now. Wow. Just wow. Are those violin words really directed toward me? I always figured I’d meet someone and get married one day. But never in my wildest dreams did I imagine a man would speak to me like that. It sends a thrill through my body. Every time.


Author Taylor Dean Taylor Dean lives in Texas and is the mother of four grown children. Upon finding herself with an empty nest, she began to write the stories that were always wandering around in her head, quickly finding she had a passion for writing, specifically romance. Whether it’s paranormal, contemporary, or suspense—you’ll find all sub-genres of clean romance in her line-up.


Blast Giveaway Details $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 12/12/18 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Thursday, November 22, 2018


I hope you are having a wonderful Thanksgiving with lots of great food and surrounded by the love of family and friends. I am so grateful for so many things, and one of those things is you, my readers! What a wonderful year we've had together!

In order to celebrate, for this holiday week I'm offering some .99 cent ebook deals on fan favorite Julie Coulter Bellon books! Perfect if you're traveling and need some reading material. (And if you already have a copy, tell your reader friends who love a good bargain!)

Here are the download links:

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

In the Non-Fiction Corner: Joy in the Covenant

In the Non-Fiction Corner With Lauren

Julie B. Beck is one of the most incredible people I have ever had the privilege of reading a book by. Could her life get any more perfect? She has had so many awesome experiences; I am glad that she decided to share them in this book. She also managed to pull off the cutest beginning of a book ever, as she talks about her parents and what a joy it was to grow up in their home. You can tell how much she loves them by the way she writes. Beck’s stories are the best part of her book, I loved the way she talks about the experiences from her life and how she has watched countless others keep their covenants.

There were several parts of her book that made me stop and think. I loved the premise of her book, which was her parents life motto of “Enjoy It!” No matter what hardship is happening, we can take a moment and because of our covenants, see the bigger picture. What an attitude to have! Some other quotes from her book that I enjoyed were when her father was offering someone a calling and they said they couldn’t accept it because they smoke. His response was, “you used to smoke!” I also learned that her and all nine of her siblings graduated from BYU, which made my heart so happy this rivalry week. Julie B. Beck is an extremely talented writer and a bright woman who aims to empower and inspire all women to be the best that they can be.

You can get your copy here

Here's the back copy:

In a world of challenges and insecurity, how can we find confidence and live joyful, faith-filled lives? How can we gain the blessings promised to the Lord’s covenant people?

Sister Julie B. Beck, former Relief Society General President, offers answers to these questions in Joy in the Covenant. She writes: “The reflections in this book are personal expressions of deep-seated feelings and beliefs...In these reflections, I draw heavily on the lives of my parents and the lessons I have learned from them. They were my first earthly teachers, and their examples formed the foundation for my faith.”

Sister Beck prompts us to reflect on our identity and purpose, both as members of earthly families and the house of Israel. Her insights are simultaneously challenging and encouraging, profound and practical, authoritative and friendly. The messages found in Joy in the Covenant speak to all of the joy that can be found in living the gospel of Jesus Christ and in being part of God's covenant family.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Have You Seen the Forgotten Carols? Tickets On Sale Now!

The Forgotten Carols is coming back!

If you love a great show with a fantastic message for the Christmas season, you have to see The Forgotten Carols. The music and spirit of this show are something not to be missed.

If you've never been, it tells the story of Connie Lou, a nurse whose empty life is changed when Uncle John, a new patient she is attending, recounts the story of Christ’s birth as told by little known characters in the nativity story. The accounts from the Innkeeper, the Shepherd and others help the nurse discover what the world has forgotten about Christmas, ultimately encouraging her to open her heart to the joy of this special season.

It's so good!

You can see all the showtimes, locations, and purchase tickets here

Here's a little video teaser, if you need that little push. :) I know it will be your new Christmas tradition, like it is for our family because it has that little bit of Christmas magic that is unforgettable. 

In the Non-Fiction Corner and a Giveaway!

In the Non-Fiction Corner with Lauren!

When most people think of Susan Easton Black, they usually think Church History scholar. But here she is, writing a book about Mary the mother of the Savior! I first received the book and looked at how many pages it was. 84? How can it possibly be 84 pages? I was pretty sure I already knew everything there was to know about Mary, we have heard the stories a million times. However, I was mistaken. Black not only tells the stories that we all know, but she puts them in the context of Jewish tradition. She really did her research with the history, so she can tell us things like what Joseph and Mary’s wedding was probably like, what happened when she visited Elisabeth, and why the inns in Bethlehem were actually full. It was interesting to learn in this way---it brings the story to life as you consider the circumstances and emotions that Mary and her family were facing.

Susan Easton Black also puts everything on a precise timeline. This proves to be extremely educational as well, because while we all know the stories of the Savior’s early life, Black connects them chronologically and relates them to each other. She did it this in one of her chapters about Jesus’ early life. She tells about his life in Egypt, when he was brought back to Nazareth, what his life was probably like, and takes us to where he is teaching the scholars at the temple. Black writes in a very educational and profound manner, and I think her serious style is perfect for the content of this book. Mary, who is so loved and revered by Christian faiths, needs to be talked about in our faith as well and this book did a really great job of making her real to me.

You can get your copy of Glorious Truths About Mary Mother of Jesus here

Don't forget to scroll down and enter the giveaway!

Here's the back copy:

Throughout the world, millions of devout followers of Christ look to the Virgin Mary as a sacred figure, a woman to be revered and worshipped. While Latter-day Saints do not worship this chosen vessel of the Lord, we do esteem Mary as one of the most influential women in history. Her faithfulness changed the course of history, but even so, much detail of her life remains unknown to most. In Glorious Truths about Mary, Mother of Jesus, readers are invited to join distinguished LDS scholar Susan Easton Black on a journey of discovery spanning the life and legacy of this unparalleled historical giant. Discover, through scriptural and historical sources, the compelling look at how Mary, mother of Jesus, has been characterized over the centuries and the true story and lasting influence she has had, this woman whose incomparable example continues to guide and inspire faithful women today.

Blog Tour Schedule:

*Nov. 19th:,,

*Nov. 20th:,,

*Nov. 23rd :

Monday, November 19, 2018

Hawaii Five-O Recap & Review---The Thanksgiving Episode

Can you believe it's nearly Thanksgiving? Where has this year gone? Thankfully, we have a new Hawaii Five-0 ep to watch!

The show starts out sort of dark with a man falling down some stairs and a very large safe falling on him and smushing him. Ew.

Then we cut to Grover in the shower singing, until his brother dumps a bucket of ice on him and his screams wake the family. His mother (played by Gladys Knight. Love her!) comes in to give her boys an earful. Louis Gossett Jr. also pokes his head in the bathroom and he's playing Lou's dad. So fun to see them!

Shifting over to the annual Thanksgiving football game, it's McG's team vs. Tani's team this year. There's some good-natured trash talking and we find out that Noelani is dating a coach. (So cute!) Tani is pretty intense and her brother tells Junior that she was only this competitive until she was eight and then no one would play with her. (A little sad, but maybe understandable. She was really competitive!) On the last drive, Tani passes to Junior, but he was out of bounds when he caught it so it doesn't count and the game ends up being a tie.

Steve gets a call and the team heads out to the house where the smushed guy is dead laying on the floor in a pool of blood. Duke tells him that the homeowners are out of town and the thief took the giant safe out of bedroom and tried to bring it down the stairs himself. Oh and SmushedThief has priors and a day job doing a shuttle service. (So he knows when the rich people are out of town.) HPD finds drill marks and shavings on body, which tells them that someone else drilled the safe while it was on top of the dead guy. (Double ew.)

Grover tells Renee how hard it is to have his brother Percy there. He goes down to cook and Percy is cooking his specialty as well. He stands there berating Lou and calling him fat, chubster, and says he's as big as a house. (It's uncomfortable for sure.) The situation escalates when Percy throws dough at Lou and it starts a food fight. Gladys and Louis are cuddling and kissing when they hear the food fight. Mom tells her boys to clean up and points out that it's not funny for grown men to do this. (Agreed!)

Adam is looking through the safe and noticing that there's a ton of valuables still left in it. Tani adds that she found a bag of jewelry and a laptop upstairs. So if the SmushedThief didn't want that, he must have been after something specific. But then Tani adds another angle and says she thinks there were two thieves since she found another point of entry.

Grover serves his omelets and Percy brings out his pastries, which everyone loves. Some in the family think Percy should open his own bakery and Percy has actually met with a bank for a business loan. Dad is skeptical since Percy doesn't get out of bed until two in the afternoon, but Mom is excited and congratulates him. Grover is annoyed, so Renee sends him to pick up the turkey. Percy goes with him to pick out his ingredients and throws in a few more names for his brother like dum-dum, chub chub, and fat. (How old is this older brother? Grover has to be mid-to late forties I would guess. This seems so beneath a grown man, an older brother, who is possibly nearing fifty.) Percy wants to cook dinner and so does Grover, so they decide to each cook a turkey and let the family decide who is the better cook. If Grover wins, then Percy can't come back to the Grover house for two years. If Percy wins, Grover has to admit he's the better cook and co-sign on a loan for his bakery. Percy goads Grover and asks if he's scared like he used to be when bullies chased him, so Grover immediately takes the bet and Percy calls him fat one more time for good measure. (So uncomfortable with all the fat-shaming. Ugh.)

Grover ends up paying for his brother's groceries and then mocks him in front of the cashier and says he's $300 closer to getting rid of him. (Why? Why make Grover look bad?) The whole island is sold out of turkeys, but Grover calls in Kamekona, who shows up with a live turkey. For $400 he'll kill, clean, and dress it, so Grover shells out even more cash. (I was surprised he carries that much cash on him!)

Louis is on the couch with his grandson watching TV and Gladys has him put on his glasses (so he doesn't slice off his pinky) and go into kitchen to peel potatoes. It was such a cute scene! Will is helping him peel and comments that it's obvious his grandpa is scared of his grandma. It's okay, though, because his dad is scared of his mom, too, and everyone knows it, even his friends at work. Louis has a heart to heart where he tells Will that Grandma spends every waking hour taking care of them and still finds time to cook dinner every night after a fifty hour work week. Will's mom spends every waking hour taking care of Will, his dad, and his sister even with everything on her plate, so they spend every waking hour of our lives trying to be worthy of those women. Yeah, they're scared, scared of not measuring up and someday Will will be lucky enough to find a women he's scared of. (*sniff* Easily the best scene of the show.)

Back at the Chatting Table, Jerry has spoken with the homeowners and the only thing missing is a Stan Musial baseball card. Tani's never heard of him. (Me, neither.) But it must be valuable since it was insured for over 60K. Since the thief is going to want to unload it and there's only a couple of places that will take it, they should be able to locate it easily. Jerry and Adam go to a collectible shop and Jerry wants to dress in a disguise as a southern gentleman. Adam suggests that Jerry should just be himself and Adam will be Jerry's rich friend from Japan who wants to take some baseball memorabilia home. They approach the guy who's closing up the store, he says sure, come on in, but then locks them out and goes out the back. Adam gives chase and takes him down just like Steve would have done. (We haven't had a flying Steve takedown in a while. I miss those. Also, it's weird Adam is on the task force now and doing all the task force-y things.)

Grover is chopping veggies and cooking when Renee comes in. He sings to her, they dance and kiss, she talks about how happy he looks while cooking. (It was sweet and very believable.) Grover tells Renee about the bet with Percy and Renee is upset and disappointed. She doesn't want anything to do with that.

Jerry and Adam come back to the Chatting Table with the stolen card and say the collector bought it for ten grand, but all he could give them was a basic physical description of the seller. Tunior found footage of a guy buying drill bits and drills the morning of the robbery so he's obviously the guilty party. Since the homeowner is landing soon, Tunior is going to go show him the footage and see if he recognizes the guy.

Renee, Will, Louis, and Gladys are all on the porch looking at old pictures of Lou and Percy. They comment on how big Lou was and they mention that the kids at school started calling him chubster (and his brother continued it! Oy.) The bullies would chase him and he would be yelling for Percy because he knew his brother would stick up for him. Grover is listening in on the convo when he smells smoke. His turkey is burned. Grover is mad and throws his towel on the stove before he goes after Percy who is cooking outside. He shoves Percy and accuses him of turning the heat up on his bird, which he denies. Lou forges ahead and says Percy is a liar who has been two steps away from jail since he could crawl. Lou throws a punch and the fight is on. The family comes to witness this spectacle with disappointment on everyone's face. Grover then notices smoke billowing from the house and says to call the fire department.

Tunior shows the homeowner the grainy image and tell him that whoever stole the card knew it was there. He recognizes the drill bit buyer guy as someone who worked at a homeless shelter that he used to donate to. His name was Patrick and he knew the card was there. Tunior goes to the homeless shelter and Patrick straight up admits he stole the card so he could feed the homeless on Thanksgiving. Apparently the homeowner decided not to donate for the Thanksgiving meal this year, and didn't care people would go hungry, so Patrick went all Robin Hood and decided to steal the card. The thing that was so horrific about this crime, though, was the blatant disregard for the DEAD MAN underneath the safe he drilled that card out of. And then Tunior give him a sympathetic look and tell him they won't arrest him until after his shift. But that's not all! They'll even help him serve, with big smiles all around. (Honestly I was appalled. What message are we sending here? Patrick showed no mercy to the man killed by the safe. Patrick is a thief. But since he did something charitable, then he gets some special treatment? *shakes head*)

The kitchen fire is put out, started by a greasy towel on the stovetop, but thankfully was contained to the kitchen. Louis admits that he had a few too many cocktails and thought the turkey would cook faster if he turned the heat up. So it wasn't Percy after all. Lou goes to apologize to Percy for the way he's been treating him and the horrible things he said. Percy apologizes as well and mentions that he's kept a scrapbook of all of Grover's achievements and wanted to tell him, but he couldn't get it out. (It bothers me that most of Percy's insults were about Grover's physical appearance, though. It was not normal at all.) They both cry and hug and Grover admits that Percy is the reason he became a cop so he could protect people who couldn't protect themselves. (Except that Percy became the bully he'd once saved Lou from, but okay.) They're saying I love yous and hugging while the family looks on. Unfortunately, now they don't have a turkey, but Lou takes them to the restaurant where the rest of the crew has gathered.

Tani tells Junior that her goal is to keep pace with him, but he's ducking out early to go to his family dinner to start learning how to be in the same room as his dad. They drink to dysfunctional family and holidays that force us to spend time with them. Adam is looking sadly at a pic of him and Kono and Jerry comes over to ask how's he's holding up on his first Thanksgiving without Kono. He says it's hard, but he's thankful for what he has. Steve signs over the restaurant to Kamekona (Danny signed it before he left for Jersey) and says that they almost broke even, to which Kame says in this business we call that success. (I'm just glad the Steve owning a restaurant storyline is OVAH!) Grover talks to Kamekona about a job for Percy as a baker. He pulls a pastry sample in a baggie from his pants pocket, (ew) which Kamekona tastes and hires Percy on the spot. Percy and Grover hug again with another I love you, then we pan to show everyone happy and eating with a Happy Thanksgiving wish from Steve.

So, we don't find out anything else about the man who was smushed by the safe. Lou and Percy look terrible for most of the show (and I normally like Lou's character, but this was over the top.) A man is given sympathy after stealing and showing no mercy to another human, all because he used his ill-gotten gains to feed the homeless. But, on the good side, we got Steve out of the restaurant business, we saw Gladys and Louis, and got a nice Thanksgiving wish from Steve.

What did you think? Did you watch?

Friday, November 16, 2018

Freebie Friday for Western Fans!


 If you are looking for a western romance with a Christmas theme, Christmas in Three Rivers is free!

Download your free copy here

Here's the back copy:

Isn't Christmas the best time to fall in love? The cowboys of Three Rivers Ranch think so. Join four of them as they journey toward their path to happily ever after!

THE NINTH INNING: The Christmas season has never felt like such a burden to boutique owner Andrea Larsen. But with Mama gone and the holidays upon her, Andy finds herself wishing she hadn't been so quick to judge her former boyfriend, cowboy Lawrence Collins. Well, Lawrence hasn't forgotten about Andy either, and he devises a plan to get her out to the ranch so they can reconnect. Do they have the faith and humility to patch things up and start a new relationship?

TEN DAYS IN TOWN: Sandy Keller is tired of the dating scene in Three Rivers. Though she owns the pancake house, she's looking for a fresh start, which means an escape from the town where she grew up. When her older brother's best friend, Tad Jorgensen, comes to town for the holidays, it is a balm to his weary soul. A helicopter tour guide who experienced a near-death experience, he's looking to start over too--but in Three Rivers. Can Sandy and Tad navigate their troubles to find the path God wants them to take--and discover true love--in only ten days?

ELEVEN YEAR REUNION: Pastry chef extraordinaire, Grace Lewis has moved to Three Rivers to help Heidi Ackerman open a bakery in Three Rivers. Grace relishes the idea of starting over in a town where no one knows about her failed cupcakery. She doesn't expect to run into her old high school boyfriend, Jonathan Carver. A carpenter working at Three Rivers Ranch, Jon's in town against his will. But with Grace now on the scene, Jon's thinking life in Three Rivers is suddenly looking up. But with her focus on baking and his disdain for small towns, can they make their eleven year reunion stick?

THE TWELFTH TOWN: Newscaster Taryn Tucker has had enough of life on-screen. She's bounced from town to town before arriving in Three Rivers, completely alone and completely anonymous--just the way she now likes it. She takes a job cleaning at Three Rivers Ranch, hoping for a chance to figure out who she is and where God wants her. When she meets happy-go-lucky cowhand Kenny Stockton, she doesn't expect sparks to fly. Kenny's always been "the best friend" for his female friends, but the pull between him and Taryn can't be denied. Will they have the courage and faith necessary to make their opposite worlds mesh?

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Hawaii Five-0 Recap & Review---The 200th Episode!

I have watched this show from the very beginning and am so thrilled it made the milestone of 200 episodes! Not many shows do these days and it is quite an accomplishment.

The episode starts out with an old school car chase on Dec. 6th 1941. Two men who look suspiciously like Danny and Steve (only Danny is being called Milton), dressed in 40s clothing are in a police car chasing some bad guys, bickering over Milton/Danny's shooting, and displaying some awesome driving skills---until the bad guys come out with a Tommy gun. Cut to the music, but this time it's done instrumentally with a little 40s type jazzy beat. Loved it!

We come back to present day where the Restaurant of Ridiculousness is finally opening. There is lots of law enforcement there with full plates (that they aren't paying for since it's a soft opening) to introduce people to the restaurant. Danny is worried about money and Steve, as always, is trying to reassure him. Duke brings in a retired HPD detective named Milton Cooper to meet Steve. Milton has a backstory of being best friends with Steve's grandpa and they had aspirations of being detectives together, but all that changed on Dec. 7th.  Milton and GrandpaMcG were attempting some armchair detective-ing on the weekends back in the day to crack the last unsolved case of Chang Opana, the legendary HPD detective. (Wait, I thought GrandpaMcG was a military guy and died on the Arizona during the Pearl Harbor attack? Also, if Milton and GrandpaMcG were buddies as young men in 1941 wouldn't Milton be close to 100 years old now? He's looking pretty good for being close to a century in age.) Anyway, Milton brings out GrandpaMcG's briefcase that he dug out of storage so maybe Steve can help solve the case that they couldn't all those years ago. 

Steve takes the briefcase home and opens it up.There are a few sentimental items in it like a pen with SM initials on it and a pic of GrandpaMcG with Chang. Danny comes in, grousing about how he has a headache and the restaurant has emptied his pockets. Steve reassures him again and says they made fans tonight. (Oy. Let the restaurant die already!) Danny asks what he's working on and Steve fills him in on the legendary HPD detective Chang Opana and how he apprehended all his suspects. He was the inspiration for Charlie Chan and he did all of it without a gun, using a bullwhip instead. (Cool details.) The case in front of Steve is Chang's last unsolved case of a girl who went missing in April 1932 and Chang worked the case until he was forced to retire. Danny is not interested in the least and leaves.

Steve gets to work on the case laying out the documents and evidence files, but he gets tired, and falls asleep at the desk. When we come back we're in Steve's dream! He's now his GrandpaMcG's at his HPD desk on Dec. 5th 1941. Milton is his partner and comes in with a pic of MissingGirlLila's last photo before she disappeared and she's wearing a very expensive diamond necklace. How does a poor girl get a piece like that? they wonder. As they are leaving the HPD, a suspicious looking car rolls by and shoot at them. You know, when people shoot at you in front of your office you're on to something, Milton says. Yes, Captain Obvious, someone really wants Lila's disappearance to remain a mystery. (I really love the music, costumes, and accents. They really did a good job of making it feel like the 40s sort of film noire.)

Duke comes to take their statement, but they don't have a description since it was dark. Steve calls over a detective named Flanagan (Jerry) and asks him to get info on the Fleetmaster car that the suspects were driving. Cut to the beach where Lila's brother (Junior) is trying to teach a woman to surf, but she's more interested in flirting with him. McG and Milton catch up and he says he told them all he has to say about Lila's disappearance. When they ask him about the photo and the necklace, however, he says he thinks he knows who could have given it to her.

A Honolulu police car pulls up to the Peteffer estate. Milton and McG argue about whether to go in or not since it didn't go well last time. McG thinks maybe they were too polite so when the security guard approaches and doesn't want to let them in, Steve smashes his face against the car and they punch their way in. Mr. Peteffer doesn't look all that surprised and is standing on his veranda. He does ask them to leave, but gets all sad-looking when they show him Lila's picture. He loved her like a daughter, he says, since she was a rare beauty, too delicate for cane fields. He had her working in the house and though he doesn't know anything about the necklace, she did offer him money to pay off a debt her dad owed right before she went missing. Mr. Peteffer answers his phone and it's for Steve, haha. Jerry's street snitches have eyes on the Fleetmaster so McMilton heads out, talking about how if Lila was desperate to pay off Mr Peteffer who knows what she got mixed up in. They find the Fleetmaster and the two men who were shooting at them earlier. They get in and drive away so Steve gives chase and it's the opening sequence chase again.

Milton manages to shoot one of the bad guys and they crash. The car bursts into flame, but Steve still runs toward it. Both men are dead and Milton is yelling that the car is going to blow. Steve is trying to reach for a wallet when his arm catches on fire. They run for cover just as the car blows up. Steve is sad that his best hope to ID those guys went up in smoke.

Steve is getting treated for his arm burn by Noelani who Milton mistakes for a nurse and she corrects him that she is a doctor. Milton doesn't want to look at the burn because he'll get sick, so he's watching an athlete get treated and notices the letterman jacket on the athlete's girlfriend. He pulls out a pic from Lila's case of her with some other girls and there's a letterman jacket in it. Flanagan helps them figure out that the letterman's sweater in Lila's picture is from Franklin High school and one of the girls in the photograph is Alexa Alani, a singer.

They go to the club where Alexa is on stage singing. (I liked her voice and all the authentic era music.) Before he can question Alexa, Steve sees Earl Blackstone and goes to talk to him. Earl (Adam) is not happy to see Steve and accuses HPD of harassing him. Steve says that if he wants HPD to leave him alone he shouldn't run illegal gambling dens and push dope. Of course, if Steve had any evidence Earl wouldn't be there sipping this fine liquor. Steve takes a swig from the bottle just for good measure (and to annoy Earl.) Back to Alexa who is now sitting at the bar. The boys approach her, but she won't talk to cops. Instead, she gives them a matchbook that says meet me in the alley in two minutes. (That won't be good.) They ask her how she knew Lila and it turns out they were hula girls together. Lila was working two jobs to pay off father's debts and Alexa saw her the night she disappeared getting into a man's fancy car. She was over the moon in love with him and he definitely gave her the diamond necklace. She tells them that it would have been a big scandal if anyone knew who it was, but before she can say his name, she's shot. Steve cradles her in his arms and asks her for the name. She manages to get out "James" before she dies. As they're loading her body into the ambulance, Captain Grover comes along and is ticked that they didn't followed orders to drop this and work the Blackstone case so he takes away their guns and badges. (Surprisingly a lot of the cast looks good with hats on.)

It's Dec. 7th and the boys meet up with Flanagan. He has film of archived old newspapers of when James Whitmour got a new fancy car called the Phantom II for his 25th birthday. He's the son of mobster Clarence Whitmour and was engaged to Ellen Debecker of the Debecker Diamond fortune. But the twist is, that the evening edition of the paper chronicled how James Whitmour died in a hail of bullets the same day Lila went missing. James was found in an alley (the picture they show is super ew), but McG notices that there's no pool of blood, even though he had multiple gunshot wounds. The autopsy showed that he was actually sitting down when he was shot, so the body was moved. If Lila left club with James, it's possible she was in the car when he was gunned down. Steve gets a phone call from the coroner's office and they ID'd one of the guys from the Fleetmaster crash. He was a known associate of Whitmour's! Obviously, Clarence knows who killed his son, but Steve thinks it was Earl Blackstone since there's a feud between the two families since 1932. James' death were probably the spark that ignited the whole thing, since Clarence wouldn't want people knowing his son was hanging out with a hula girl, so he covered it up. They go to talk to Clarence to find out what happened to Lila. (I sort of wish Adam was still a bad guy, haha! He plays them so well!)

They go to Clarence's compound armed with guns and hop the fence, take out a guard and open the gate. Walking up the driveway, they take out all the guards and shoot their way in. These are terrible guards who should have been fired for their incompetence since Steve and his crew easily overpower them all,  including shooting through a wall to kill the guy walking down the creaky stairs. They have one last guy who is dumb enough to come down the main stairs, so they all shoot him. (A teensy bit violent, but okay.) They find Clarence and sit him down. He's not talking, so Steve plays Russian roulette with his gun and Clarence's knee. Clarence protests that they're cops, but they tell him they don't have badges. (The look on his face is hilarious.) Clarence listens while they tell him what they think they know, that James was in relationship with Lila, driving the Phantom II, when they were both killed inside the vehicle. James got word and told his goons to tidy it up and make it look like James was by himself. They finally give him a chance to talk, but before he can say anything sirens blare and when they look out window they see Japanese planes flying to Pearl Harbor. Uh oh. that can't be good.

Back to present day and Steve wakes up. He gathers all the papers and goes to the office. Danny is doing research on Chang and Steve says he thinks he's solved the case and knows what happened to Lila. The key is finding the car. She was last seen in the Phantom and the car is very distinctive. If Clarence wanted to avoid the tragedy turning to scandal, he would need to tow the bullet-riddled car somewhere and get rid of it. Well, there's a record from that night of Whitmour having his towing company take a car from downtown Honolulu to the Whitmour estate. (I guess the HPD missed that important detail and so did Chang?) Oddly, Whitmour submitted plans for a swimming pool on the estate and hired a company to start work, but satellite pics show there is no pool. Dun, dun, dun. They go to the compound and dig up the car. Lila's remains are still inside. Steve solved a 90 year old cold case in his sleep! He modestly says he just got it over the finish line. Steve goes to a Chang Apana exhibit-type room and he places Lila's picture next to Chang's picture before meeting Milton at a funeral for Lila.

Back at the restaurant Steve says the case got him thinking about what he really wants to do with his time. His grandfather would have given anything to be a cop and gave his life for country. (I'm still confused about that a little.) Steve has a badge and a great job, so what is he doing running a restaurant. (Which is what so many people have been asking for the last two years!) He apologizes to Danny, but says he loves his job and isn't going to walk away from that. Danny says if Steve is out, he's out too. He'd rather die from a bullet than the stress of running the restaurant. Luckily, Kamekona wants to buy them out of their shares.They have a celebratory drink to knowing when to quit.

The end.

I loved all the costumes and the feel of the old-fashioned case. The details were really well done from phones to cars to the toothpick in Steve's mouth. There were a few parts of the dream that didn't add up, but it was a dream after all and didn't take away from the overall feel for me. It was a fun 200th episode for sure!

Did you watch? What did you think?

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Book Review and Giveaway!

As a big historical romance fan, I was excited to try Joanna Barker's new regency, The Truth About Miss Ashbourne. 

The book opens with governess Juliana Ashbourne being called to task by the lady of the house. Juliana loves the children she teaches, but the gentleman and lady of the house are difficult to deal with to say the least. But as Juliana comes to find out that she is an heiress and her dream of opening a school might become a reality, she has some decisions to make. If she accepts the inheritance, she must spend a month with family she's never met. And then, to make things even more complicated, she has a misunderstanding with Mr. William Rowley, a man who makes her heart pound. Can Juliana accept the love of a family? And maybe even a future with William?

I really enjoyed this author's writing style. I think she captures the time period and her characters were really well-done. Juliana has a believable growth arc and readers will definitely be cheering for her to get her happily-ever-after, both with her family and with William. And let's talk about William for a minute. He is such a sigh-worthy hero and I would have loved to have had chapters from his point of view. Their banter and blossoming friendship was so sweet and there were definitely some laugh out loud moments as they navigated their relationship. The romance is slow and tender and will take readers on a bumpy, twisty road to love that will make you laugh, cry, and wish the book never ended.

I will definitely be looking for more from this author.

You can get your copy here

Don't forget to scroll down and enter the giveaway!


Here's the back copy:

Governess Juliana Ashbourne has dreams reaching far beyond the confines of her current position, hoping to someday establish her own school for girls. When she inherits a fortune from her late grandfather, she is shocked to learn that "someday" may soon be within reach. However, there is one condition: she must spend a month at the estate of Havenfield--with the very family who disowned her mother. Intent on securing the money she needs to start her school, Juliana accepts the invitation, vowing to guard her heart against those who shunned her all her life.

But Havenfield is far from what she expects. She discovers a grandmother seeking forgiveness, a cold and disapproving aunt, and a painfully shy cousin. And then there is Mr. William Rowley. Though the heir to the estate is a merciless tease, Juliana finds in him a friend and confidant--and perhaps something more. As she struggles to make sense of her new place in the world, her stubborn independence clashes with a yearning to belong and the even more confusing desires of her heart.