Monday, November 28, 2022

"The Heroic Sheriff's Abducted Bride"
by Florence Linnington

Laura Hart and her father have been traveling from town to town selling his "miracle cures" since Laura's mother had died. Laura would like to settle down in a nice town somewhere rather than constantly traveling from one location to another, selling "cures" that do very little of what they are claimed to fix. And when someone dies after taking one of these cures, the town's Sheriff finds himself with more trouble on his hands than he initially expected.


As with Ms. Linnington's previous books, I enjoyed reading this one. It had a slightly more complicated adventure than I usually expect in a mail order bride story and involved multiple twists and turns in the plot. I particularly enjoyed seeing the personal growth experienced by several of the characters in this tale. 


The only questions that I was left with were not important to the story itself, just a couple of small things that I was curious about that were left unanswered. But as I said, they were not something that impacted the story one way or the other in the end. Nor did my not learning those answers detract from my enjoyment of the story.


If you enjoy reading mail order bride stories or have enjoyed Ms Linnington's other books, then you should enjoy this one as well.

Monday, November 21, 2022

"Enchantment of Thorns"
by Helena Rockwell and Elm Vince

Once a year, all the village girls turning 18 must gather and enter the woods, following a magically appearing trail where one will be chosen as part of a tithe and taken away by a fae known as "the beast." No one knows what happens to the chosen girl and in 100 years,  none of those chosen have ever returned to her home. No one in the village knows why the tithe exists, other than it helps to maintain peace between the fae kingdom and the bordering human village, even if that peace is tenuous at best. 

Aster is the green witch protecting her town from the fae living across the border. This year both she & her sister are among those turning 18. When Aster protects and prevents her sister from being chosen, the beast takes Aster instead. Now who will protect the village if she doesn’t return and what will happen to Aster while in the fae realm, and what happened to the girls who had been chosen in the past?


I enjoyed this twist on the Beauty and the Beast tale. I found the setting of the faerie kingdoms an interesting twist and enjoyed the almost hidden disney-esque references  that showed up here & there amusing. I think that anyone who enjoys twisted fairy tales & retellings will enjoy this book just as I did.


Monday, November 14, 2022

"The Song of the Partisans" by Kathryn Gauci

A young member of the French Resistance in Paris is asked to accept a risky assignment in Reims, France. She's given the cover of working as a nurse for an elderly woman who owns a Champagne estate. The woman she is employed as a nurse for is also part of the Resistance and the job provides cover and access for the young woman to complete other assignments and otherwise help the Resistance during the last year of WWII.

There is much danger and intrigue in this novel. And while it is in itself a work of fiction, the author has very clearly done her research into real world events that took place during the time and locations in which this book is set which and inspired this tale. Not only did I enjoy the story itself, but I very much enjoyed the historical information that the author included after the story was complete.

If you enjoy WWII stories, historical fiction set in this time period, or any of Ms. Gauci's other books, then I would strongly recommend reading this one. It was very well written and quite enjoyable. It is definitely worth reading.

Monday, November 7, 2022

"Secrets of Mackinac Island:
The Complete Series" by Katie Winters

When Elise's mother died unexpectedly, Elise felt the loss deeply. She'd never known who her father was as her mother had refused to talk about the subject. But as she was going through her mothers things after the funeral, Elise discovered the diary her mother had kept during the year that she'd gotten pregnant. Not only had her mother never spoken about Elise's father, but she had apparently hidden the fact that she had worked for a time as a personal assistant for actress Jane Seymour during the filming of the movie "Somewhere in Time" on Mackinac Island. 

Having never known anything about it, Elise finds herself traveling to Mackinac Island, Michigan to try and discover more of her mother's hidden past, and maybe even manage to discover and hopefully meet her father.


I really enjoyed reading this 4-book boxed set. I grew up in Michigan myself and spent two summers working on Mackinac Island while in college. I also loved the movie "Somewhere in Time."  Anyone who has spent any time working on the island, will learn many stories from year round residents about the time that Ms. Seymour and her co-star Christopher Reeves were filming on the island. I know that I certainly did.


The four books flowed so seamlessly into one another that it felt more like I was reading one book rather than four books packaged together. The author must have spent at least some time visiting the island as her descriptions of the more notable landmarks were pretty accurate. It brought back to me many memories of my time on the island. 


I think that this story will appeal to those who have visited the island or who have seen the movie "Somewhere in Time" as well as to anyone who enjoys contemporary romance tales.


Edited to add: When I went to post my review of the box set, it appears that the box set is no longer available, and what I read appears to have been republished as books 1 & 2 in a 6 book series. (In other words, you'll need to buy both books if you want to enjoy what I have read thus far, and it looks like I'll need to read the remaining 4 books in the series to find out what happens next.)

Monday, October 31, 2022

"Moonlight and Mayhem"
by Molly Fitz and Trixie Silvertale

After two unsuccessful attempts to create a business that will keep her bills paid, Sydney and the 3 ghosts living in her house come up with the idea to sell some of the antiques collecting dust in the home. What could possibly go wrong? How about a cursed dagger and a murder for starters?

This was the 3rd book in this series and a great way to end things. I enjoyed reading about not just the main character, but also about the supporting characters. I very much enjoyed reading not just this book, but the previous two in this trilogy. I believe this was meant to be the final book in a short series, but if Ms. Fitz and Ms. Silvertale were to team up and continue to add books to this series, I for one would love to read more about these characters in the future. (In other words, I'm hoping that they will eventually add more books and continue on with it.)


If you're looking for a fun cozy mystery with a paranormal twist, give this book/ series a try. I found it quite entertaining and fun to read. I would, however,  recommend starting with the first book and reading this series in order as the events won't make much sense if you don't, but I know that I've enjoyed reading all three books.

Monday, October 24, 2022

"Moonlight and Magic"
by Molly Fitz and Trixie Silvertale

Sydney and the 3 ghosts inhabiting her new home managed to solve the murder of the former mistress of the manor, allowing her soul to finally be at rest. And while that solves one problem, it doesn't solve the issue of her needing to earn an income after having received a bad review from the reviewer who had stayed at her bed and breakfast. (It hadn't been advertised as haunted, so the negative review wasn't really all that surprising, just unfortunate.) 

So they do the only thing that really makes sense after that…. They decide to give haunted Halloween tours. After all, with 3 ghosts in residence, why not make use of the building's haunted reputation? But once again, something goes wrong, leaving Sydney and the others trapped in a repeating loop of the events from the day of the first tours. (Read the book, if you want to know why, I won't spoil that part for you.)


I was amused by this tale, though somewhat disappointed that there was no reference made by the main character to the movie Groundhog Day. (If you’ve ever seen the movie, then you know why.) Still, the events of each day they are forced to repeat and the ways they try to break the cycle and get out of the loop were quite innovative and well worth reading.


If you like paranormal cozy mysteries, or cozy mysteries in general, then I believe you should enjoy this book. Also, if you've enjoyed any of the other books written by either Ms. Fitz or Ms. Silvertale, you probably won't want to skip this fun series. But as this is the second book in the series, I strongly recommend reading book 1 in the series before reading this one.


Monday, October 17, 2022

“The Rancher’s Mail Order Surprise”
by Florence Linnington

Sam left home after his mother’s death. Both he and his father were grieving and Sam had taken to drinking his sorrow away. He spent his time in saloons and traveling with a not very nice group of men who committed quite a number of horrible acts before Sam left them behind, stopped drinking, and eventually returned home. Things had changed a great deal while he’d been gone. His father was willing to take him back, but would only accept that Sam was there to stay if he married the bride that his father had sent for. But it’s uncertain who was more surprised by this fact, Sam himself when his bride showed up on their doorstep unannounced, or Clarise, the woman who arrived expecting to find a man wanting to marry her rather than one not even knowing she was coming.

Like Ms. Linnington’s other books, I enjoyed reading this one. Clarise comes across ultimately as a very strong woman who is determined to find herself a home, while at the same time as a woman who is unsure of herself as she has been bullied and teased throughout her life for being too tall. She is willing to stand up for herself when no one else will, even as she tries to hide her hurt feelings, and is determined to find a place for herself so that she won’t be sent away, whether or not Sam is willing to marry her.


I like that Clarise is such a strong character with a bit of a softer side. I also like that we get to see not only Sam’s strength, but his faults. He is not perfect and doesn’t try to pretend to be. But he is determined not to repeat his previous mistakes. This is a strong story with characters that are easily relatable and whose reactions to events are quite understandable.


I think that anyone who enjoys any of Ms. Linnington’s other books or mail order bride novels should enjoy this book. It is a very entertaining story that occasionally had me on the edge of my seat as I read. There were some twists & turns that I hadn’t expected in this book, and I think that they made it all the more entertaining to read.

Monday, October 10, 2022

"Moonlight and Mischief"
by Molly Fitz and Trixie Silvertale

Sydney thought she had everything… the perfect job, the perfect guy, and was expecting the perfect marriage proposal later that day. Instead, said boyfriend dumped her, fired her, and gave her two weeks to move out of his apartment or find herself on the street. Given that they were living in New York, that was a pretty much impossible task. But after a long, ever expanding search, she came across an estate for sale that appeared to be entirely in her budget. It wasn't until after she'd bought it with the intent of turning it into a Bed & Breakfast that she learned why such an amazing property was so affordable.  

The manor was haunted by several ghosts who needed her to solve the mystery of an old murder so that they could set the victim's ghost free from a tormented existence stuck between planes of existence. But with it having happened so very long ago, how can Sydney possibly solve it considering that anyone and everyone involved was long dead. And what will happen to her Bed and Breakfast if she can't solve the murder?


I really enjoyed this story. The characters were entertaining as well as often surprising. Sydney is clearly a strong woman determined to make a fresh start of her life rather than someone who is content to wallow in misery when what she was expecting in her life falls apart.


I would recommend giving this book a try. I have read and enjoyed other series of books by each of these authors and very definitely enjoyed this team up between them. I'm very much looking forward to seeing where this series goes from here and would recommend it to anyone who has enjoyed books by either Ms.  Fitz or Ms. Silvertale. Also, anyone who enjoys cozy mysteries with a paranormal twist, especially one involving cats.

Monday, October 3, 2022

"Missing Florence" by Samantha Price

Joy and Isaac  are getting married. Wilma has been trying to convince Joy to allow it to be a double wedding with Wilma and Levi, but Joy wants to have it be her day & not her mother's. But that isn't the only argument happening, for Joy wants her sister Florence to be invited even though Florence has married an outsider. But Wilma is still furious and would rather that her stepdaughter not be there. Life for all of them will be rapidly changing once Wilma & Levi are married. 

This was the 7th book in the Bonnet Sisters series. It was a very quick and pleasant read. While not everything that happens is happy, this series always leaves me with a warm, hopeful feeling.  It leaves me with the impression that no matter how bad things may seem, that all will end well.


I believe that anyone who enjoys Amish romance stories or any of the other books in this series would enjoy this book.

Monday, September 26, 2022

"Scones & Tombstones" by Trixie Silvertale

Halloween in Pin Cherry Harbor this year is sure to be amazing. Mitzy Moon has arranged for a very impressive haunted house event  in order to raise funds for the local animal shelter & pet cemetery. And just before the soft opening of the haunted house, a famous cookbook author is scheduled to debut her newest book at Mitzy's bookshop. 

But things rarely go as planned, and in this case that means the author winding up dead with her body hidden in one of the haunted house exhibits. Unsurprisingly, it's Mitzy who first notices the very real corpse on display, and thus winding up involved in trying to solve another murder.


As with the other books in this series that I've had the pleasure to read, I really enjoyed this one. The various twists and turns in the story kept me guessing throughout and I can honestly say that there's a spot in this book where I was tearing up more than just a little. (I'd tell you about it, but that would be a huge spoiler. But trust me, you’ll know it when you read it.)


So if you've enjoyed any of the other books in this series, be sure to grab a copy of this one. I don't think you'll be disappointed. And while you'd also likely enjoy it even if you haven't read any of the previous books in the series, I can honestly say that I think you'll enjoy it even more if you read at least a few of the earlier books first. (Mainly so that you can understand some of the background information as well as learning more about the characters in this series.)

Monday, September 19, 2022

"Heartless" written by Gail carriger,
read by Emily Gray

It appears that the only solution to keep the vampires from killing Alexia, was to allow the vampire, Lord Akeldama, to adopt her baby after it was born. This was not a solution that Alexia particularly liked, but it was the only thing that would keep them all safe and alive. So Alexia & her husband bought the house next door to Lord Akeldama so that she could always be near her child. They also made arrangements with him whereby she & Connell would turn one of Lord Akeldama's closets into a room where they would secretly live so that she could have some say in the raising of her baby.

Add to all of that a ghostly warning about a threat to the queen & you have a very busy and chaotic remainder of Alexia’s pregnancy.

I listened to this as an audiobook rather than read it. The narrator once again did an excellent job of differentiating the voices and manner of speaking so that there was never any confusion about which character was talking. I enjoyed listening to this book a great deal and would assume that as a book to read it would be just as enjoyable. Anyone who has read (or listened to) the previous books in this series will want to continue on and read this one as well. I know that I enjoyed it.

Monday, September 12, 2022

“Spinster Bride for the Gold Miner”
by Florence Linnington

Blue, the woman who owns and runs the town saloon in Clear Hollow, has just lost her mother and is now on her own. She’s been essentially on her own for most of her life, but the death of her mother has really hit her hard. Add to that how busy things have gotten in town lately with all the new prospectors trying to find gold and strike it rich, and she almost has more than she can handle to deal with at the moment. Business has certainly picked up at the Saloon lately, and besides being the owner, she is the only employee, making it very difficult to keep up with all the new customers.

Thomas is a new arrival in town, seeking to strike it rich, just like so many others. He soon seems to become infatuated with the slightly older than himself woman who dresses in men’s clothing and runs the saloon. Being a friendly and talkative sort, he soon makes himself useful at the saloon as well as befriending a pair of prospectors panning for gold in the river.

I enjoyed this story. It, like the most recent books by Ms. Linnington, has broken slightly from the standard format of many mail order bride books. Yes, it follows the usual storyline involving two strangers meeting and developing a relationship while learning to trust each other. In this case, it does not begin with a marriage between strangers, but allows them to develop and grow towards each other. I find that I like this change as it allows for more character and story development throughout the book. And like her previous books, I can count on this one to continue to offer me a happy and “feelgood” ending to the story. 


I believe that anyone who has enjoyed any of Ms. Linnington’s previous books will also enjoy this one. Also anyone who enjoys mail order (or not quite mail order) bride stories or who is simply looking for a book with a happy ending that will make them smile should give this one a try. I believe it to be one of Ms. Linnington’s best books so far.

Monday, September 5, 2022

"The taming of the broom" by Erin Johnson

Laidey is a relatively new witch who works in the Swept Away broom shop and who isn't willing to try casting spells herself. She's got a crush on the Pirate Captain Bruce, whom she's become good friends with. So when after a public fight with the pirate Lysander lands Bruce in the sheriff's prison on the same day that someone murders Bruce's friend Freddy, Laidey needs to help find the murderer before the lazy sheriff decides to lay the blame on Bruce instead of bothering to find the real killer.

This was a nice little cozy mystery involving pirates, magic, a cursed renaissance faire, and enough fun to keep me entertained throughout the story. The author did an excellent job writing this one. I found the reasons why Laidey refuses to learn how to use magic both very understandable as well as amusing. (You'll have to read the book yourself if you want to know why.)


Anyone who enjoys cozy mysteries with Shakespeare references, renaissance faires, magic, and even a vampire should enjoy this book. And if you've read the previous books in this series, you won't want to skip this one either. It’s a quick read but a lot of fun and very enjoyable. (And I’m highly amused by the Shakespeare pun in the book’s title of not only this one, but each of the previous books.)

Monday, August 29, 2022

"The Mountain Man's wife"
by Florence Linnington

Travis has returned to a long empty house after he had gotten word that his father had died several years earlier, leaving him everything. He'd been happy with his roaming lifestyle, but now is realizing how lonely he is and has begun thinking that having a wife to come home to would be nice. And when he meets a woman named Ruby, he seems to think that maybe he has found her.

Ruby lives with her brother, who refuses to listen to her advice. She knows that the soil on their land is unable to grow anything, but her brother refuses to give up or accept help or advice from anyone. So when she gets the opportunity to marry a man who actually listens to her and is willing to take her advice, she agrees and marries him right away.

This is a sweet story that focuses on love in several forms. The expected conflict is not between Travis and Ruby, who are well suited to each other. Instead, the conflict in this book comes from a gang that comes to town looking for two young children who have run away. Though clearly there is more to that story.

This was one of Ms. Linnington's best tales so far. It doesn't follow the usual plotline of a mail order bride story, and that only managed to increase my enjoyment of it. If you've enjoyed any of Ms. Linnington's other books, please don't skip this one. It's an enjoyable story that just might tug a bit at your heartstrings a bit.

Monday, August 22, 2022

"Tw'elf Knight" by Nova Nelson

As the four Knights were reading for their first joust of the morning at the magical renaissance fair they had each been cursed to remain in forever, the body of a female elf is found in the stables. She appears to have fallen through the roof, though when and how was a mystery as no one had seen or heard it happen, though it had clearly been a recent death. Now, Sir Olivia seeks to solve this murder, even if it seems to implicate the man who she had begun to develop feelings for.


This was the fifth book in the magical renaissance fair mysteries. I found it to be quite entertaining and very fun to read. There were a number or unexpected twists that added to the difficulty for Olivia to find the truth and the murderer. This story builds on the earlier books in the series and continues to amuse me with the antics of several of the characters. Pax the dove, in particular, who used to be the wings of an angel kept me snickering at his misbehaving nature. 


I enjoyed this book just as much as the rest of the series. I believe that anyone who has read any.of the other books in this series or who enjoys cozy mysteries, fantasy stories, or renaissance faires would enjoy this book as much as I did. 

Monday, August 15, 2022

"Blameless" written by Gail Carriger,
read by Emily Gray

Alexia has been thrown out by her husband after he assumes that there is no way that he could be the father of her baby due to his being a werewolf. And once the news that her husband believes her to have been unfaithful spreads, her family also tells her to leave their home. And having lost the protection of the Woolsey werewolf pack, the vampires begin in earnest to try and have her killed. It can only be assumed that they know something about the child she carries that no one else does, and for some reason it causes them to want to destroy her unborn child, and they will do everything they can to make that happen.

I enjoyed listening to the audiobook version of this book. The narrator, as with the previous two books, did an excellent job of differentiating between each of the characters, allowing no accidental confusion as to which character is speaking at any point in the story. The only real complaint that I have is that there seems to be unusually long pauses between the segments of this story. Several were long enough that I had to  check to make sure my book was still actually playing and not become paused somehow.

But that issue aside, it was a good story and I feel that this is an audiobook that should appeal to anyone who has either read or listened to the previous books in the series. It should also appeal to those who enjoy vampire and werewolf stories, and in particular to those who enjoy a bit of steampunk.

Monday, August 8, 2022

"Fairy wives of Windsor" by Trixie Silvertale

Coriander the fairy runs the fortune teller's tent in a cursed renaissance faire where the traveling performers are all magical beings who are under a curse that does not allow them to ever leave. On the day this story takes place, the body of another member of the faire falls out of her caravan when she goes to set up her tent. Calling her friend Fraxi for help, it is at this point that the lazy and incompetent sheriff comes by and sees Fraxi touching the body as she tries to see who it is and immediately arrests her for the murder. Now it is up to Coriander to figure out who actually killed Winston, why, and how they did it so that Fraxi won't be the one punished for the crime.

Like the first three books in this series, this was a very fun read that held my interest from the beginning through to the end, where there were a few very big surprises. It was well written and very entertaining. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys fantasy, cozy mysteries, and renaissance faires. I don't think you'll be disappointed with this or any of the previous books in the series. I know I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in the next book in this series.


Monday, August 1, 2022

"The Englisher" by Samantha Price

Florence has eloped with Carter Braithwaite & the two of them couldn't be more happy together. She doesn't regret the decision to leave the Amish lifestyle, though she misses her orchard and her family. Her stepmother Wilma is set to marry Levi and has declared that he will run the orchard, even though he has no idea how or even what needs to be done. 

This series just keeps getting better and better as it continues on. I've been enjoying watching Florence learn more about living a non-Amish lifestyle while doing her best to help her family whenever possible.


There is a heart & depth to the story & series that keeps me coming back to find out what happens next. I believe that anyone who has enjoyed the previous books in the series, or Amish romance novels will enjoy this book as much as I did. 


Monday, July 25, 2022

"Adventures of a Vegan Vampire"
by Cate Lawley

After going out for drinks with the rest of her office, Mallory wakes up in her apartment the next morning with no idea of how she got home, and soon realized that something was very wrong with her. She couldn't seem to get enough to drink, discovered that she'd slept through several days, and that solid food suddenly made her violently ill. Something was very wrong. And she soon learns that something is the fact that she has become a vampire… with an aversion to blood.


This was a fun little cozy mystery. The main character was forced to rapidly learn how to survive as a vampire who must find a way to survive even though she can't seem to drink blood. She also needs to learn everything she needs to know to survive as a vampire quickly, or else starve to death. Add to that a need to find out how she became a vampire in the first place and who was responsible for seemingly trying to kill her and why, and she has quite a task in front of her.


I enjoyed this one. It was lighthearted and fun. I think anyone who enjoys cozy mysteries, lighthearted vampire stories, or is just looking for something fun to read would enjoy this book.

 

Monday, July 18, 2022

"Changeless"
written by Gail Carriger, read by Emily Gray

In this, the 2nd book in the parasol protectorate series, Alexia Tarabotti is quite happily married to the alpha Werewolf, Connell Macon. Now that she is married, as a soulless she has been appointed to the position as mouja to the crown. And as such, she is often called on to help solve problems that cannot be solved by werewolves or vampires alone. In this case, there seems to be something happening that renders vampires and werewolves human and exercises any ghosts caught within its boundaries from existence. But whether it is a plague or a weapon of some sort remains to be determined.


I listened to the audiobook version of this book. The narrator did an excellent job with differentiating between the characters. The story was fun and entertaining with a dramatic ending that left me dying to see what happens in the next book. I would recommend this book to anyone who has read the first book, as well as to anyone who enjoys werewolves, vampires, ghosts, and the paranormal. And anyone who enjoyed the first book in the series should also enjoy this book as well.

Monday, July 11, 2022

"Lucy and Matthew: A Bold Love"
by Florence Linnington

After Lucy's Aunt Mary dies, Lucy decides to seek out her only other living relative, her sister Caroline. Caroline had moved out west years earlier after having gotten married. The two of them had not seen each other since, but Lucy has nowhere else to go and does not wish to marry someone she doesn't love just to remain in Virginia. 

Matthew can only be described as a gruff mountain man who has never felt the need to remain at home for very long and has never been interested in finding a wife. But something about Lucy keeps him wanting to know more about her.  She is much more independent than most women he has met.


I enjoyed reading this book. It was different from Ms Linnington's other books in that the main conflict doesn't come from misunderstandings due to a lack of communication between Lucy and Michael. Instead, it comes from Lucy's sister, though what happens results from good intentions, however undesired those intentions were.


I really liked this twist and new direction of a romantic not quite a mail order bride story. Lucy is a very strong character and one that I found very relatable and who captured my interest. She knows what she does and doesn't want and isn't afraid to go against societal norms to live her life on her terms.


I believe that anyone who enjoys historical fiction, romance, and yes, mail order bride stories should enjoy this book.

Sunday, July 10, 2022

 ★★ 𝐓𝐇𝐄 𝐈𝐒𝐋𝐀𝐍𝐃 𝐂𝐎𝐕𝐄𝐑 𝐑𝐄𝐕𝐄𝐀𝐋!★★

 

𝐇𝐨𝐭 𝐨𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐡𝐞𝐞𝐥𝐬 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐍𝐞𝐰 𝐘𝐨𝐫𝐤 𝐓𝐢𝐦𝐞𝐬 𝐛𝐞𝐬𝐭𝐬𝐞𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐓𝐰𝐢𝐧 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐋𝐚𝐤𝐞, 𝐚𝐧𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐩𝐮𝐥𝐬𝐞-𝐩𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐝𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐝 𝐟𝐫𝐨𝐦 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐮𝐧𝐝𝐢𝐬𝐩𝐮𝐭𝐞𝐝 𝐪𝐮𝐞𝐞𝐧 𝐨𝐟 𝐘𝐀 𝐭𝐡𝐫𝐢𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐍𝐚𝐭𝐚𝐬𝐡𝐚 𝐏𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐭𝐨𝐧!

 

𝐏𝐫𝐞𝐨𝐫𝐝𝐞𝐫 - https://bit.ly/3ny7QCc

𝐀𝐦𝐚𝐳𝐨𝐧 - https://bit.ly/3AnP2NF

 

𝗧𝗵𝗲𝘆 𝘀𝗮𝗶𝗱 𝗴𝗼𝗼𝗱𝗯𝘆𝗲 𝘁𝗼 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗶𝗿 𝗳𝗿𝗶𝗲𝗻𝗱𝘀 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗳𝗮𝗺𝗶𝗹𝘆 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘄𝗲𝗲𝗸𝗲𝗻𝗱. 𝗧𝗵𝗲𝘆 𝘄𝗲𝗿𝗲𝗻’𝘁 𝗰𝗼𝘂𝗻𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗼𝗻 𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿.




 

Jagged Island: a private amusement park for the very rich—or the very influential. Liam, James, Will, Ava, Harper, and Paisley—social media influencers with millions of followers—have been invited for an exclusive weekend before the park opens. They’ll make posts and videos for their channels and report every second of their VIP treatment. 

 

When the teens arrive, they're stunned: the resort is even better than they’d imagined. Their hotel rooms are unreal, the park’s themed rides are incredible, and the island is hauntingly beautiful. They’re given a jam-packed itinerary for the weekend.  

 

But soon they'll discover that something's missing from their schedule: getting off the island alive.

 

#CoverReveal #NatashaPreston #TheIsland #YaThriller


Monday, July 4, 2022

"Wings and Broken things"
by Trixie Silvertale

In this, the 3rd book of the Mitzy Moon Series, events take place at the yuletide extravaganza. The local vet has been injured in a hit and run accident with seemingly no witnesses and the same night an angel statue is stolen. It seems the perfect time for Mitzy to practice using her newfound psychic abilities as well as putting her amateur sleuthing skills to the test. 


I've been slowly working on catching up with reading this series as I often find myself reading them out of order. And while it is quite possible to pick up on much of what has gone before when reading the later books in the series, I do find it helpful to try & read the earlier books as well in order to gain more knowledge & understanding of the characters and their motivations.


This book was quite fun and entertaining, and as always it was amusing to see what new trouble Mitzy would find herself in. I thoroughly enjoyed spending a nice, relaxing afternoon reading this tale. I believe anyone who enjoys cozy mysteries, any of the other books in the Mitzi Moon series, or are just looking for something fun to read then I think you'll enjoy this book.

Monday, June 27, 2022

"The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood

This was a tale that takes place in the country of Gilead, though that wasn't what it had always been called. The country had started out as a democracy, but over time many in power had turned to extreme religion, turning the country into a theocracy where women had no rights, their possessions were taken from them and turned over to male relatives, they were no longer allowed to hold any job outside the home, and many other changes began to take place as well.  It started out as a slow decline that many didn’t see coming in the beginning, but soon spiraled out of control as the religious extremists took control.


In the end, women who were capable of bearing children were forced to become surrogates & bear children for those who could not get pregnant to raise as their own. Little choice was given to these women, and the other options should they continue to refuse were far worse.


I decided to read this book because of the many parallels between this fictional story and much of what is happening in the real world today. It is a story that seems as if it should be impossible, but there are many women who have just been stripped of some of their rights by those in power, and there is a clear path from that to many other rights being stripped away as well in the name of religion. For a fictional story, the parallels between what happened in this book and the world today are uncomfortably real and painfully clear.


I believe that this is a book that should be read at least once in your life, especially now, though I'm sure many will not agree. Beyond that, I will only say that I found this to be a very powerful cautionary tale of what can potentially happen even in a world where so many are still fighting to hold on their rights and to improve their lives and the lives of others. It may be a fictional tale, but I could see it could very easily become reality under the right circumstances.

Monday, June 20, 2022

“Blades and Bridesmaids” by Trixie Silvertale

In this most recent addition to the Mitzy Moon series, Mitzy is missing Sheriff Harper who is away at an extensive FBI training session (or as Mitzy calls it “FBI sleepaway camp.” But never fear, Acting Sheriff Pauly Paulson, who doesn’t exactly get along with Mitzy, is filling in for him while he is gone. Now, Mitzy and Paulson are forced to work together when Odell’s niece and her bridal party are being stalked in the woods while on a bridal party camping trip. Camping is not something that Mitzy is familiar with, and she and Acting Sheriff Paulson need to be able to work together well enough to rescue the missing girls before they wind up dead. Can the two of them manage it?


I really enjoyed reading this story. (I read it in one day.) There is a lot going on, and watching Mitzy and Acting Sheriff Paulson learn to work together and rely on each other in the woods was a very interesting story. We got to learn a lot more about this secondary character and her history and motivations that we haven’t gotten to see before, and it truly adds to the enjoyment and understanding of the character. And while this may be Mitzy’s mission to rescue the girls, this time she isn’t the only one who gets to be the hero of the story.


There is also a secondary plot in this one involving Mitzy and her “Sheriff too hot to handle.” I don’t want to say too much about that story since it is just, if not more entertaining and enlightening as the main part of this book. It is definitely just as much, if not more fun to see the trouble this plot twist causes the two characters as well as the lessons learned from it. And I am definitely looking forward to seeing what trouble they will all get into for the next book in this series. 

Monday, June 13, 2022

"The Academy of Beasts" by Becca Fanning

Fiona was rescued from a fire that killed her family. The rescuers believe that she is a shifter who simply hasn't experienced her first shift yet. If she is, it's news to her as she believed herself to be, like those who raised her, completely human. Now, she's in some mysterious academy full of various animal shifters and feeling completely lost. 

This was an interesting little short story that I picked up while it was free on Amazon, believing it to be a full book. (It turned out to be only 63 pages.) The story was interesting, but ended on a cliff hanger and far too soon. While I will admit to being curious as to what happens next, I probably won't continue on with the series as I expect that the other books are also far too short for me to feel they're worth the expense for me to buy them. (I finished this one in a couple of hours at most & was left feeling like there should have been much more.) 


The series has 40 books in it and it appears that each book is $3.99. If each of those books is also only about 63 pages, it's not worth it for me to want to buy the rest of this series, no matter how much I respect how hard the author may have worked on it. I'm happy to pay more for a full length novel, but not for something that feels more like a sample or a teaser to me. 


But I'll keep my eyes open in case the series ever goes on sale. The concept was interesting, though there were a few dropped words here & there. It just wasn't interesting enough for me to want to buy 39 more sets 63 pages for almost $4 each. As much as I love a good story, I'd rather buy a $10+ novel than a $4 short story.

Monday, June 6, 2022

"The Bride's Shame and her Miracle Baby"
by Florence Linnington

On her way to the train station, Maribelle runs across an abandoned infant. She knows the man she is leaving town to meet and marry does not want any children, but there isn't time to take the baby to an orphanage without missing her train, and just leaving it would mean certain death for the poor thing.  So she does the only thing she can do & takes him with her, deciding to raise him as her own.

As expected, when seeing an unmarried young woman with a baby, most people assume the worst about her. Even her potential husband seems to believe her a liar at first. But he does need someone to help keep his homestead running, which means either hiring help or getting married, so Edward gives Maribelle a chance to prove herself useful before deciding whether to send her back east or not.


Like Ms. Linnington’s other books, there is a common theme running through this one as well…assumptions cause more problems than being honest with one another from the beginning, and if not resolved soon enough can ruin potential relationships as well as reputations or even lives.


I enjoyed reading this one. Maribelle is a strong character, and given what she both has been through & will face in this story, she needed to be. Anyone who enjoys mail order bride stories, historical fiction with a bit of romance, or any of Ms. Linnington's other books is sure to love this one as well.

Monday, May 30, 2022

"The Dead of Autumn" by Jean Rabe

Halloween night always seems to get unusual 911 calls, but most of them don't amount to much more than minor disturbances, loud parties that might have gotten out of hand, or silly and generally harmless pranks. But a girl murdered on her way to a costume party is anything but usual.

Once again, Sheriff Piper Blackwell has her hands full trying to discover who killed the teenage girl dressed as Steampunk Tinkerbell and why.  And this one is definitely not a simple murder mystery. There are a lot of twists and turns involved, as well as quite a few surprises along the way.


From the moment I started reading, I honestly couldn't put this book down. It held me completely captivated from beginning to end as I tried to figure it out before the end of the story. And the secondary mystery (that had nothing to do with this murder) was just as interesting and entertaining. And watching that mystery get solved gives quite a bit of insight into some of the secondary characters and their lives, adding extra dimensions to the overall story.


I highly recommend reading this book, especially if you enjoy murder mysteries, any of the other books in this series, or are just looking for a very well written tale that will keep you guessing until the end. I think you'll enjoy it as much as I did. Ms. Rabe is definitely a master storyteller who never disappoints her readers. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll read through this one almost nonstop & be waiting as patiently as possible for the next one in the series.

Monday, May 23, 2022

"The Admiral's wife" by M.K. Tod

This is the story of two women, separated by about a century in time, who share a similar tale. Both were born and raised elsewhere, but have come to live in Hong Kong. One in the 1900s when her husband was given a position there in the British Navy, and the other in more modern times to get to spend time with her family & to learn more about her Chinese heritage. 

I enjoyed this book a great deal. I loved the parallels between the lives of the two women. Both felt very out of place when they first arrived. There was a great deal that was unfamiliar to each that they needed to adjust to in their new lives.  Yet despite the difference in the time period in which each lived, there were quite a few similarities and a kind of parallel between them as well.


And the way that their stories were so interwoven made it clear that this was one story rather than two separate tales. It was very well brought together so that it seemed to come around full circle in the end in a way that made perfect sense. Yes, their lives were quite different from each other and obviously they’d never met, but there was a connection between them just the same. There is a lot more going on in each woman's story than first meets the eye, and that, as well as the choices they made, brings a great deal of depth to this book and made it a very enjoyable book for me to read. I would definitely recommend that others give this one a try. In my opinion, it’s worth it.

Monday, May 16, 2022

The Ultimate Meal Prep Cookbook”
by America’s Test Kitchen

Recently, my husband checked this cookbook out from the library for us to look through to see if it might work for us. We often find that while one or two recipes in a cookbook work well for our family, there’s rarely more than that. But this book was different. We found quite a few recipes that we could use with only minor alterations of substitutions of ingredients. 

I was really impressed by the format of this book. It discussed not only ingredients, but storage options for leftovers as well as foods that had not yet been cooked, simple methods of cooking various foods, what changes to make if you are using dried ingredients rather than fresh ones, and it divided things into weekly meal plans that utilized a lot of the same ingredients in different ways so that you could reduce the number of shopping trips/ amount of items needed to purchase for the meals on that week’s recommended dishes.


The book also provides grocery lists for the various dishes, including either the full week’s meal plans as suggested as well as separated by individual dishes if you don’t intend to make all of the items listed in any of the weekly menu plans they’ve suggested. That made it really convenient for us as quite often we’ll like a dish from one grouping but not the others for the rest of that week.


The book provides complete and easy to follow, step by step cooking instructions on how to make the various dishes that have been thoroughly tested out by America’s Test Kitchen so that they will be easy enough for those of us with little or no cooking experience to follow. And for me, that alone was a huge plus over other cookbooks that are not designed for new or inexperienced home cooks to be able to easily follow & end up with a delicious meal. 


I also like that at the back of the book it includes nutritional information on each dish so that anyone watching what they eat can clearly see the information they might want or need in one location, as well as a chart for conversions and equivalents for ingredient portions and an index to make it nice and easy to find a dish without needing to know which meal grouping it was in. 


I found this book very well organized and extremely helpful. And after having made a few of the meals for ourselves & loved them, we ordered a copy of this book to keep in our home library as we will soon need to return this one to the library. If you think this book sounds like it might be a good one for you as well, I recommend starting out by borrowing it from your local library to test out a few of the dishes yourself. I suspect you’ll also wind up finding it a good one to buy for yourself as well, but this way you’re not out any money if it turns out not to be right for you.

"The Heroic Sheriff's Abducted Bride" <br>by Florence Linnington

Laura Hart and her father have been traveling from town to town selling his "miracle cures" since Laura's mother had died. Lau...