Tuesday, October 17, 2017

My Bookshelf: Bringing Maggie Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer

Decades of loss, an unsolved mystery, and a rift spanning three generations.
Hazel DeFord is a woman haunted by her past. While berry picking in a blackberry thicket in 1943, ten-year-old Hazel momentarily turned her back on her three-year-old sister, Maggie, and the young girl disappeared.
Almost seventy years later, the mystery remains unsolved, and the secret guilt Hazel carries has alienated her from her daughter, Diane, who can’t understand her mother’s overprotectiveness and near paranoia. While Diane resents her mother’s inexplicable eccentricities, her daughter, Meghan—a cold case agent—cherishes her grandmother’s lavish attention and affection.
When a traffic accident forces Meghan to take a six-week leave of absence to recover, all three generations of DeFord women find themselves unexpectedly under the same roof. Meghan knows she will have to act as a mediator between the two headstrong and contentious women. But when they uncover Hazel’s painful secret, will Meghan also be able to use her investigative prowess to solve the family mystery and help both women recover all that’s been lost?

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

My Bookshelf: Many Sparrows by Lori Benton

Either she and her children would emerge from that wilderness together, or none of them would…
In 1774, the Ohio-Kentucky frontier pulses with rising tension and brutal conflicts as colonists push westward and encroach upon Native American territories. The young Inglesby family is making the perilous journey west when an accident sends Philip back to Redstone Fort for help, forcing him to leave his pregnant wife, Clare, and their four-year-old son, Jacob, on a remote mountain trail.
When Philip does not return and Jacob disappears from the wagon under the cover of darkness, Clare finds herself utterly alone, in labor, and wondering how she can recover her son…especially when her second child is moments away from being born.
Clare will face the greatest fight of her life as she struggles to reclaim her son from the Shawnee Indians now holding him captive. But with the battle lines sharply drawn, Jacob’s life might not be the only one at stake. When frontiersman Jeremiah Ring comes to her aid, can the stranger convince Clare that recovering her son will require the very thing her anguished heart is unwilling to do—be still, wait, and let God fight this battle for them?

Monday, September 25, 2017

Must-Have October Releases

How is it already October? I feel like this year just began, and already it’s almost over. A part of me wishes we could just slow down time, but the other part of me loves where I’m at and all of the changes these weeks and months have been bringing, so I know I honestly wouldn’t go back for anything. Plus, if I did, I would have so much less to read! And I don’t want to miss out on these gems, or on sharing them with you!

Dangerous Illusions by Irene Hannon
Dangerous Illusions is the first book in Irene’s Code of Honor series.

Trish Bailey is on overload trying to deal with a demanding job, an ailing mother, and a healing heart. When a series of unsettling memory lapses leads to a tragic death—and puts Trish under police scrutiny—her world is once again thrown into turmoil.
Detective Colin Flynn isn’t certain what to think of the facts he uncovers during his investigation. Did Trish simply make a terrible mistake or is there more to the case than meets the eye? As he searches for answers, disturbing information begins to emerge—and if the forces at work are as evil as he suspects, the situation isn’t just dangerous…it’s deadly.

A Dangerous Legacy by Elizabeth Camden
A Dangerous Legacy is a stand-alone novel.

Telegraph operator Lucy Drake is a master of Morse code and has made herself a valuable asset to the Associated Press news agency. But the sudden arrival of Sir Colin Beckwith at rival British news agency Reuters puts her hard-earned livelihood at risk. Colin is talented, handsome, insufferably charming—and keeping a secret that jeopardizes his reputation.
Despite their rivalry, Lucy can’t deny that Colin has the connections she needs to give her family an edge in the long legal battle they’ve been waging over their rightful inheritance. But when she negotiates an unlikely alliance with him, the web of treachery they dive into proves to be far more dangerous than they ever could have known.

Too Far Down by Mary Connealy
Too Far Down is the third book in Mary’s Cimarron Legacy series, coming after No Way Up and Long Time Gone.

With danger drawing ever closer, the Boden clan risk losing their ranch forever.
Having returned home to the ranch, Cole Boden finds himself caught between missing his time back east and appreciating all that New Mexico Territory offers. Sure, he fights with his siblings now and then, but he does care for them. He enjoys his new job running the mine and, when he’s honest, he admits that Melanie Blake captures his interest in a way no other woman ever has.
Melanie has been a friend to the Bodens forever. A cowgirl who is more comfortable with horses and lassoes than people, she never expected to find herself falling for someone, particularly for refined Cole Boden, a Harvard graduate who can’t seem to make up his mind about staying in New Mexico.
When a deadly explosion damages the CR Mining Company, the Bodens realize their troubles are not behind them as they thought. Shadowy forces are still working against them. Melanie is determined to help Cole and the family finally put an end to the danger that’s threatened all of them. But will putting herself in harm’s way be more dangerous than anyone expected?

Where We Belong by Lynn Austin
Where We Belong is a stand-alone novel.

Join two incomparable sisters on adventures that span the decades and cross the globe.
In the city of Chicago in 1892, the rules and expectations for Victorian women are strict, their roles in life limited. But sisters Rebecca and Flora Hawes are not typical Victorian ladies. Their love of adventure and their desire to use their God-given talents have taken them out of society ballrooms and delivered them to the Sinai Desert—and into the teeth of a sandstorm.
Accompanied by Soren Petersen, their somber young butler, and Kate Rafferty, a plucky street urchin learning to be their lady’s maid, the two women are on a quest across the desert, chasing rumors of an important biblical manuscript.
 As the expedition becomes ever more dangerous and uncertain, all four travelers sift through memories and adventures of their past, recalling the events that shaped them and the journeys and providence that brought them to this very time and place.

Love Held Captive by Shelley Shepard Gray
Love Held Captive is the third book in Shelley’s Lone Star Hero’s Love Story series, coming after The Loyal Heart and An Uncommon Protector.

After the War Between States, a Confederate officer longs to heal the heart of a beautiful woman—but first he’ll have to right the wrongs that were done to her.
Major Ethan Kelly has never been able to absolve himself of the guilt he feels for raiding a woman’s home shortly before he was taken prisoner during the Civil War. He is struggling to get through each day until he once again crosses paths with Lizbeth Barclay—the very woman he is trying to forget.
Life after the war is not much different for former Captain Devin Monroe until he meets Julianne VanFleet. He knows she is the woman he’s been waiting for, but he struggles to come to terms with the sacrifices she made to survive the war.
When Ethan and Devin discover that their former colonel, Adam Bushnell, is responsible for both Lizbeth’s and Julianne’s pain, they call on their former fellow soldiers to hunt him down. As the men band together to earn the trust of the women they love, Lizbeth and Julianne seek the justice they deserve in a country longing to heal.

The Dishonorable Miss Delancy by Carolyn Miller
The Dishonorable Miss Delancy is the third book in Carolyn’s Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace series, coming after The Elusive Miss Ellison and The Captivating Lady Charlotte.

Will a damaged reputation and desire for society’s approval thwart the legacy of grace?
Tainted by scandal and forced to leave London for the quieter Brighton countryside, the Honorable Miss Clara DeLancey is a shadow of her former society self. She’s lost the man she loved to another and, in a culture that has no patience for self-pity, is struggling with depression. A chance encounter brings her a healing friendship with the sisters of an injured naval captain. But Clara’s society mama is appalled at the new company she’s keeping.
Captain Benjamin Kemsley is not looking for a wife. But his gallant spirit won’t let him ignore the penniless viscount’s daughter—not when she so obviously needs assistance to keep moving forward from day to day. Can he protect his heart and still keep her safe?
When they’re pushed into the highest echelons of society at the Prince Regent’s Brighton Pavilion, this mismatched couple must decide if family honor is more important than their hopes. Can they right the wrongs of the past and find future happiness together—without finances, family support, or royal favor?

Those are my must-have releases for October!
Happy reading!

To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.

All credit for the italicized synopses goes to each author and their respective publishers.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

My Bookshelf: Gathering the Threads by Cindy Woodsmall

Finally back in the Old Order Amish world she loves, will Ariana’s new perspectives draw her family closer together—or completely rip them apart?
After months away in the Englisch world, Ariana Brenneman is overjoyed to be in the Old Order Amish home where she was raised. Yet her excitement is mixed with an unexpected apprehension as she reconciles all she’s learned from her biological parents with the uncompromising teachings of her Plain community. Although her childhood friend, ex-Amish Quill Schlabach, hopes to help her navigate her new role among her people, Ariana’s Daed doesn’t understand why his sweet daughter is suddenly questioning his authority. Will she sow seeds of unrest and rebellion in the entire family?
Meanwhile, Skylar Nash has finally found her place among the large Brenneman family, but Ariana’s arrival threatens to unravel Skylar’s new identity—and her sobriety. Both Ariana and Skylar must discover the true cords that bind a family and community together and grasp tight the One who holds their authentic identities close to His heart.

Gathering the Threads is the third book in Cindy Woodsmall’s Amish of Summer Grove series, coming after Ties That Bind and Fraying at the Edge. Although I didn’t get the chance to read Fraying at the Edge, I did read Ties That Bind and I really enjoyed it! However, I am unfortunately not as pleased with this final book in the series. While I did like the story and was glad to finally know how everything was going to end, there were just a few things that really bothered me about this novel. There were some minor plotlines that were somewhat glossed over and I felt like were never fully resolved, and that is something that really bothers me. Along with that, some interactions between the characters felt a little forced, and I felt that some of the other minor plotlines were somewhat unnecessary.
Despite all of that, I still loved Ariana. Although her now-constant feministic attitudes grated on my nerves quite a bit, I have noticed throughout the years of reading Amish novels that it does seem as if Amish women are very held back by their fathers and then eventually their husbands. While I do agree that this issue is something that needed to be addressed, it felt a little bit forced coming from sweet, obedient Ariana, though she did undergo some changes after spending time with her Englisch family. I also wasn’t really pleased with the way that things played out with her and Rudy, because it just made him seem a little like he had two different personalities.
As for Quill, I have finally decided that I do in fact like him. Before I wrote this review, I went back and read my review for Ties That Bind, and I had to laugh at my original opinion of Quill. While I do still believe he tends to unintentionally hurt Ariana far too often, I did realize he really is just a sweetheart. He has such a heart for people and genuinely loves helping them escape injustice, and I did love the way he constantly proved he was happy for Rudy and Ariana even though he was in love with her himself.
All in all, I did enjoy reading this novel, even though there were those few things that bothered me. I was so glad to finally know the rest of the story, especially with regards to Frieda, and I was also desperate to find out what would happen with the bishop, whom I definitely hated. So, I think I can confidently give this story four out of five bookshelves, and I am looking forward to hopefully reading more of Cindy’s books in the future!
Happy reading!

I received a copy of this book through the Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for only my honest review.

To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.

All credit for the italicized synopsis goes to Cindy Woodsmall and Waterbrook Publishing.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Must-Have September Releases

September is somehow already here, and for me, that means one thing. FOOTBALL!!!!!!!!! Football season is finally here, and I couldn’t be happier. Also, September means quite a few new books that I am dying to read, so I am getting ready to be fairly busy! Here are my must-have novels for the month!

When the Bishop Needs an Alibi by Vannetta Chapman
When the Bishop Needs an Alibi is the second book in Vannetta’s The Amish Bishop Mysteries series, coming after What the Bishop Saw.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Must-Have August Releases

How is it already August? I feel as if this summer just started, and yet it’s somehow already almost over and I haven’t accomplished even half of the things that I wanted to. But, I have enjoyed myself, and that’s what matters! That being said, here are some new books I can’t wait to enjoy!

Chasing Secrets by Lynette Eason
Chasing Secrets is the fourth book in Lynette’s Elite Guardians series, coming after Always Watching, Without Warning, and Moving Target.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Must-Have July Releases

How is it already almost July? This summer is flying by, and I am not happy about it because that means school is right around the corner. However, there are so many wonderful novels releasing over the next few months, so I am excited about that! Here are some new reads you should definitely check out!