Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Defy by Sara B Larson

Alexa Hollen is a fighter. Forced to disguise herself as a boy and serve in the king's army, Alex uses her quick wit and fierce sword-fighting skills to earn a spot on the elite prince's guard. But when a powerful sorcerer sneaks into the palace in the dead of night, even Alex, who is virtually unbeatable, can't prevent him from abducting her, her fellow guard and friend Rylan, and Prince Damian, taking them through the treacherous wilds of the jungle and deep into enemy territory.

The longer Alex is held captive with both Rylan and the prince, the more she realizes that she is not the only one who has been keeping dangerous secrets. And suddenly, after her own secret is revealed, Alex finds herself confronted with two men vying for her heart: the safe and steady Rylan, who has always cared for her, and the dark, intriguing Damian. With hidden foes lurking around every corner, is Alex strong enough to save herself and the kingdom she's sworn to protect?<
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A great addition to the YA High Fantasy genre, which is a favorite of mine. I love stepping out of our contemporary world and into a fictional land. With fantasy novels anything is possible; I love the magic, politics and romance. This story had them all. Our heroine Alexa was likable and easy to root for. She has to hide her identity to protect herself and for the past three years has not only been a personal guard to the Prince, but has also been disguising herself as a boy. Normally I’m not a huge fan of the girl-dresses-as-boy storyline, but it was well done here. I guess I have a hard time believing people would be fooled. I think since no one knew her before and the fact she looks so much like her twin brother it was easy for them to believe. For the past three years everyone has known her as a boy, but in that same time she has actually grown into a young woman. She is now seventeen and beginning to show an interest in a couple guys and is surprised when they are showing an interest in her. It was interesting to see how she begins to see herself differently. Never really finding herself pretty and content with being a soldier, it was nice to see her softer, feminine side come out. To have men appreciate her for more than her fighting skills. For those who know me, you know I am not a fan of love triangles. While this one was better than most, it still seemed a little unnecessary to me. I liked both guys (which of course must be a requirement with LTs), Prince Damian really grows as the story progresses and the more we learn about him the more you like. I also liked fellow guard Rylan, who is loyal and protective and an all around good guy. I like who Alexa ends up with and thought they had good chemistry. I think their story could have been better and developed more if the LT element wasn’t involved (but, again that’s mostly because I don’t care for LT). Overall, I thought it was a fun read. I was luckily able to read it on my iPhone, so I could read and take care of my new baby at the same time. I had a hard time putting it down and wanted to keep reading to see what would happen next. I thought things ended well, but also look forward to reading more in the series. A great debut. Content: Clean, PG13. Clean romance, language and mild violence. Talk of breeding houses and rape (not descriptive).

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Winter Queen by Amber Argyle

Mortally wounded during a raid, seventeen-year-old Ilyenna is healed by winter fairies who present her with a seductive offer: become one of them and share their power over winter. But that power comes with a price. If she accepts, she will become a force of nature, lose her humanity, and abandon her family.

Unwilling to pay such a high price, Ilyenna is enslaved by one of the invaders, Darrien. While in captivity, she learns the attack wasn’t just a simple raid but part of a larger plot to overthrow her entire nation.

With the enemy stealing over the mountains and Darrien coming to take her to his bed, Ilyenna must decide whether to resurrect the power the fairies left behind. Doing so will allow her to defeat Darrien and the other invaders, but if she embraces winter, she will lose herself to that destroying power—forever.

The synopsis and cover totally drew me to this book. After reading the Amazon “sample” I was hooked and wanted to keep reading. It’s one of those books that is hard to put down, you want to keep reading to see what will happen next and how everything will work out. I liked our heroine Ilyenna, she puts others needs above her own. She doesn’t back down and tries to do the right thing. She has it pretty rough throughout the book and I admired how she was able to stay strong. I also liked our hero Rone. He is loyal, brave and kind. I like that he continued to put Ilyenna first, even above his own needs. I liked their relationship, it did save the book for me. I thought they had good chemistry and I was rooting for them to be together. I had read some reviews that mentioned the violence, but I guess I still wasn’t expecting so much or so detailed. It seems like it was non-stop from start to finish. It seemed like so much time was spent on the violence that the rest of the story suffered. The politics and romance were overshadowed by beatings, wars and pain. I ended up skipping a couple fight scenes at the end because I was just burned out. Too much violence for my taste. I also thought the end wrapped up rather quickly. Especially in regards to Ilyenna and Rone’s relationship, it was rather sudden. The fairy elements were okay, but I’m still on the fence about how everything ended up in that regard. Overall, an interesting read. While I liked the overall story the violence was a big turn off for me. Content: There is sex before marriage and a pregnancy results. Aside from kissing, everything fades to black and there is no details. There are a couple attempts at Ilyenna’s virtue, but nothing goes too far. There is a lot of war, beatings and other violence.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

You Are Mine by Janeal Falor

Serena knows a few simple things. She will always be owned by a warlock. She will never have freedom. She will always do what her warlock wishes, regardless of how inane, frivolous, or cruel it is. And if she doesn’t follow the rules, she will be tarnished. Spelled to be bald, inked, and barren for the rest of her life—worth less than the shadow she casts.

Then her ownership is won by a barbarian from another country. With the uncertainty that comes from belonging to a new warlock, Serena questions if being tarnished is really worse than being owned by a barbarian, and tempts fate by breaking the rules. When he looks the other way instead of punishing her, she discovers a new world. The more she ventures into the forbidden, the more she learns of love and a freedom just out of reach. Serena longs for both. But in a society where women are only ever property, hoping for more could be deadly.

The synopsis for this one totally drew me in. I’m a sucker for marriage of convenience stories and high fantasy, so this was a nice mix of both. I got sucked into the story right away and had a hard time putting it down. It’s a little slow moving, knew going in that it was the first in a trilogy so that didn’t bother me too much. The subject matter was pretty heavy though.

The world building was unique. The country of Chaldonia has some very backward ideas about women. They are treated poorly, actually that’s an understatement. Women are nothing more than property, and not property that is treated well. Our heroine Serena especially had a hard life with a very abusive father. They have no rights and are really nothing more than baby breeders and punching bags. It was disturbing, but even more so when you think of the countries and religions around our world that do treat their women in a similar fashion. It’s heartbreaking to know there are women out there going through similar things. I am glad that the author wasn’t overly descriptive of the punishments and abuse. You know what has gone on, but nothing is overly detailed.

The romance was a bit lacking for me.  I think if the romance had been showcased more it would have lightened an otherwise pretty serious book.

I wouldn’t go as far as to say this is a downer, but it is definitely more on the serious side and the treatment of women is at times pretty disturbing. Again, nothing is overly detailed, but the overall mood is oppressive. I liked the end, the last chapter or so things happen that leave you happy and hopeful for Serena’s future. I am curious about continuing the series and look forward to seeing what will happen next. Overall, I enjoyed the book. I liked that it was unique and the characters were likable. The world building and writing was well done, easy to get into and hard to put down.

Content: Clean. Nothing more than kissing, but it’s clear a woman’s main purpose is producing heirs, especially male heirs. Some violent themes, but nothing overly descriptive. Some abuse, but again, nothing too descriptive. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Just Ella by Annette K Larsen

Ariella was only looking for a distraction, something to break up the monotony of palace life. What she found was a young man willing to overlook her title and show her a new and vibrant way of life. But when her growing feelings for Gavin spiral out of control and clash with the expectations of her station, she will discover that the consequences of her curiosity are far more severe than she'd imagined.

I watched in helpless horror as two guards hauled Gavin to his feet and dragged him from the room. My voice was frozen, unable to protest as another guard took hold of my arm, leading me upstairs. From the confines of my room, I stared into the darkness beyond my window, hoping to catch one more glimpse of Gavin. He was gone, and I wondered if he would have been better off if he had never met me.

This was a pleasant surprise. For some reason I didn’t have the highest expectation going into it. I think part of it was that I didn’t love the cover. I probably would have put off reading it for awhile if I hadn’t read the great reviews (especially Chrissy’s). I guess I’m a cover snob and I gravitate to the books with awesome covers (which doesn’t always mean you’ll get an awesome book. Unfortunately.) Ariella was a great heroine. I really liked her. The book opens when she is fifteen and I thought the author did a good job portraying her at that age and especially how her relationship with Gavin grows from friendship to young love. Very believable. I liked that the book takes place over a few years and we get to see the changes Ariella goes through and how she handles struggles. I like that she wanted to do the right thing and was willing to make hard choices, if it meant doing the right thing. Again, I really liked her character. I also liked Gavin. He was a sweetheart. I thought they had good chemistry and I was rooting for them. I wasn’t sure how things were going to play out, they come from different worlds and obviously won’t have the support of her family. There was another character introduced towards the end that I actually loved, I think he is more my “type” and almost started rooting for him, but I was still on Team Gavin. I was happy with how everything eventually works out. Anyway, I love high fantasy novels that have a princess as our leading lady. Not sure why, but it’s just a great setting. The book kind of reminded me of Seer and the Sword and Queen in Exile, although this book focused more on Ariella’s self discovery, and not too much court intrigue. Maybe since I had those other books in the back of my head I expected this to be similar in action/intrigue, and did keep expecting something to happen, but for the most part it’s just a nice story. There is some excitement thrown in though and I thought that made the story fun. I think it’s one I would probably enjoy even more the next time around, knowing what to expect. The writing was well done and the characters likable. I look forward to reading about Areilla’s sister Lylin in the next book. Hope it comes out soon. Overall, a fun read and one I would recommend. Can’t wait to read more from Ms. Larsen. Content: Clean.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Midnight Masquerade by Marcia McClure

I didn’t realize until I started reading that this is a retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses. I have enjoyed this fairytale and all the recent retellings that have come out. I liked McClure’s take on it though, definitely making it original and unique. I liked that there were still the elements from the original fairytale, but was told from a different perspective. I also liked the reason behind the dancing, seemed more plausible than enchantments and magic.

I liked our main characters Evony (pretty name) and Stavos. They of course have good chemistry together and I felt their connection was realistic. With the setting and with everything going on I was able to believe them falling in love so quickly. Usually that’s a tough sale for me, but I bought it here. Evony is of course sweet, beautiful and kind. She is also selfless and has put her life on hold to protect her siblings and help her family. I like that she didn’t sit back and let someone else do the rescuing, she was an active participant in making sure everything turned out right. Stavos is what you want in a hero. Not only is he good looking, but he has a caring heart and is fearless. He has high morals and stands up for what he believes in. Like I said, they are great together.

The overall story was fun and even though I’ve read a few different versions of the story, it was fun to see how McClure made it her own. And it's that cover so pretty?

McClure has written a couple other retellings (Saphyre Snow and The Whispered Kiss) which were both fun, so I was excited when I saw she has plans to write a few more retellings based on Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, and 1001 Arabian Nights. Definitely something to look forward to.

Content: Clean, PG. Kissing!!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Emma: A Latter-day Tale by Rebecca Jamison

Emma's her name and matchmaking is her game! Quirky life coach Emma wants to help her first-ever client, a lonely nanny named Harriet. But all of her attempts at matchmaking result only in embarrassing miscues and blunders, leaving the pair disheartened and confused. This modern take on the Jane Austen classic shows that sometimes the greatest match is the one we make for ourselves.
I thought this was a fun retelling of Jane Austen’s Emma. It sticks pretty closely to the format of the original, but does do its own thing. Especially towards the end. I liked when it changed things up a bit and became more unique. I think I liked Emma more in the original version, but she was still okay in this one and you still root for her to figure things out. I didn’t feel as much chemistry between her and Justin, but I still liked their relationship. Overall, it was a fun romantic comedy and would recommend to any Austen fans or for anyone that enjoys that genre. Content: Clean, G.

Monday, July 22, 2013

My Own Mr. Darcy by Karey White

After being dragged to the 2005 movie Pride and Prejudice by her mother, sixteen-year-old Elizabeth’s life changes when Matthew Macfadyen’s Mr. Darcy appears on the screen. Lizzie falls hard and makes a promise to herself that she will settle for nothing less than her own Mr. Darcy. This ill-advised pledge threatens to ruin any chance of finding true love. During the six intervening years, she has refused to give any interested suitors a chance. They weren’t Mr. Darcy enough. Coerced by her roommate, Elizabeth agrees to give the next interested guy ten dates before she dumps him. That guy is Chad, a kind and thoughtful science teacher and swim coach. While she’s dating Chad, her dream comes true in the form of a wealthy bookstore owner named Matt Dawson, who looks and acts like her Mr. Darcy. Of course she has to follow her dream. But as Elizabeth simultaneously dates a regular guy and the dazzling Mr. Dawson, she’s forced to re-evaluate what it was she loved about Mr. Darcy in the first place.
I thought this was a lot of fun. I’m a big fan of Jane Austen (who isn’t?) and loved the Kiera Knightly movie version. I actually remember watching it for the first time and the second it ended (around midnight) I made my husband go buy me a copy. I couldn’t wait to own it and make all my family and friends watch it. Beautifully done (and much better than the BBC version!), IMO. Anyway, I thought the premise for the book was cute. Elizabeth fell in love with Mr. Darcy and would settle for no one else. I won’t say too much about the plot so I won’t give away spoilers, but soon a love-triangle emerges when Elizabeth has to choose between a guy she likes and a guy who she feels resembles her Mr. Darcy. I did think it was a tad crazy how obsessed she was with Mr. Darcy (and the actor who played him). It was nice to see her grow and watch as she figures out what she really wants in a relationship and choosing someone who is the best fit. Elizabeth was a likable heroine. She is a nice person and I thought that when she was with Chad she was much more herself and I enjoyed their time together. The guys. I liked Chad. We’re supposed to like Chad. He is a great guy, treats Elizabeth well and is obviously crazy about her. He respects her and accepts her for who she is. He encourages her and even when she dumps him is still understanding and tries to be a good friend. Then there is Matt. I didn’t really care for him. I guess we’re not supposed to. I was surprised Elizabeth dated him so long when it was obvious that they had nothing in common. Aside from his resemblance to the actor who plays Mr. Darcy, I didn’t see any other similarities. I actually disliked it when she would compare them and find them similar. I guess I always pictures Mr. Darcy a lot nicer, sure he was a bit cold at first, but I never get the impression he thought he was better than anyone else. Matt does. He is pretty snobby. Again, I don’t think we’re really supposed to be rooting for him, so it’s no surprise he’s not that likable. Overall, a fun read. If you’re a fan of Pride and Prejudice you’ll enjoy this story. I liked that it wasn’t a retelling of the classic, but its own story. I thought the cover was pretty as well.

Content: Clean.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Scholar by May Nicole Abbey

A leap through time. A choice to make. A destiny to change. Dismissed by her professors, ridiculed by her classmates, Serena Metcalfe is determined to prove the existence of the Samu Aqaru, the powerful stone of the ancient pharaohs – even if it means travelling through time. But her study of Egyptology did not prepare her for the dangers and passions of the real Egypt of 2361 BC. Crocodile attacks, kidnapping, betrayal, murder…and a pharaoh who believes she is a goddess and wants her as his queen. But Serena isn’t about to give herself to a king – not when finding the precious Stone could mean saving the man she loves. Irresistible playboy Shepseskaf, fated for an early death, and his loyal yet ruthless cousin Pepisenkaura were once the closest of friends, but the right to the throne of Egypt and their rivalry for Serena threaten to transform them into bitter and eternal enemies. Only Serena knows the tragic destiny that awaits, and only Serena can rewrite history…by following her heart.
I really enjoyed the Egyptian setting in this novel. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book that takes place in this time period before and I really liked it. Serena was a pretty likable heroine; she really goes through a lot, but always remains positive. I like that she is loyal and tries to do the right thing. It does take her awhile to decide what to do about her future and to see her own worth. I liked how by the end you can see how one person really can make a difference. I liked our hero, he really grew on my throughout the story and he was very protective of Serena. I don’t know much about the ancient Egyptian culture, but I don’t imagine the women were treated very well. So, it was nice to see the hero treat Serena with respect. There is a bit of a love-triangle, which was handled well. There is quite a bit of action and once you start reading it’s hard to put down. I thought this was quite different than the first book in the series, maybe because of the setting? I enjoyed it though and it makes me want to read more books that take place in Egypt, fun setting. Overall, it was a fun read. Content: Clean, PG.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Working It Out by Rachael Anderson

A chance encounter . . . Grace Warren's life is safe and predictable—exactly the way she likes it. But when she gets roped into going to an auction to help out a friend, everything changes. She meets Seth Tuttle—a guy who unexpectedly kisses her then disappears, leaving her flustered and upset. If she never sees him again, it will be too soon. A chance for love . . . Weeks later, when Seth limps into Grace's rehab clinic post surgery, he's every bit as frustrating and annoying as she remembered. Yet there's something about him that makes her second-guess her carefully placed boundaries even though he's everything she's sure she doesn't want in a man. But maybe Seth is exactly what Grace has needed all along—assuming she's willing to risk safe and predictable for a chance at love.
I am a big fan of Rachael’s and was really looking forward to her newest book, Working It Out. The synopsis sounded fun and it did not disappoint. I loved our heroine Grace, I liked to see the changes she went through and how she grew as a character. I also liked Seth, I love confident guys. Grace and Seth had some great chemistry and fun moments between them. I liked how their relationship progressed, totally realistic. I like that their attraction for each other didn’t overshadow the story; they had a lot more things to like about one another than their looks. It felt like they were able to build up a friendship (from a fun awkward start) into a relationship that you can easily believe will last. I liked how they brought out the best in each other and how they were willing to make changes and take risks. Just a great couple. Rachael’s stories are always full of witty dialog, charming characters and stories with depth. I love that they are positive and upbeat, but always seem to have something special about them. Her characters are easy to relate to and it’s fun to learn from them. This was a fun read, I couldn’t put it down once I started and was grateful my kids decided to take long naps today so I could curl up and enjoy the ride. This is definitely one I would recommend and one I will be re-reading! Content: Clean.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Pride's Prejudice by Misty Dawn Pulsipher

Beth Pride really can’t stand William Darcy: he snubbed her at the Hartford College Children’s Benefit Auction; he has an infuriating propensity for pushing her buttons; his actions are frequently at odds with his words; and even his melting chocolate eyes and impressive physique don’t quite make up for his deficient personality. Beth’s plan to avoid William backfires when her roommate falls for his best friend. As the unlikely duo are thrown together time and again, Beth begins to second guess her earlier assumptions about William. Will Pride’s prejudice keep her from a happy ending, or will Beth discover that first impressions aren’t always what they seem?
So, I thought this was a cute, modern retelling of Pride & Prejudice. While it stuck pretty closely to the original, there were enough changes to make it different. I liked Beth, for the most part. She seems to have her head on straight and was easy to relate to. I also liked William; I guess there is no surprise how their relationship started and progresses. There are some nice moments between Beth and William and I thought they had good chemistry together. There is definitely more kissing than the original, that’s for sure! It’s hard not to compare it to Jane Austen’s; it’s hard to top perfection. While I did enjoy it, I also thought it was a tad long and wouldn’t have minded if it had been a little shorter. I liked it though and thought it was well written. Content: Clean.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Going Vintage by Lindseey Leavitt

When Mallory’s boyfriend, Jeremy, cheats on her with an online girlfriend, Mallory decides the best way to de-Jeremy her life is to de-modernize things too. Inspired by a list of goals her grandmother made in1962, Mallory swears off technology and returns to a simpler time (when boyfriends couldn’t cheat with computer avatars). The List: 1. Run for pep club secretary 2. Host a fancy dinner party/soiree 3. Sew a dress for Homecoming 4. Find a steady 5. Do something dangerous But simple proves to be crazy-complicated, and the details of the past begin to change Mallory’s present. Add in a too-busy grandmother, a sassy sister, and the cute pep-club president–who just happens to be her ex’s cousin–and soon Mallory begins to wonder if going vintage is going too far.

Isn’t that cover cute? Although, I don’t think the dress on the cover would really come from the early 60’s, it would have been fun if she was dressed to match the story. Anyway, I thought this was a cute story. Mallory discovers her longtime boyfriend has been cheating on her with a cyber-girl. Although they’ve never met in person, he shares things with her than he doesn’t with Mallory. Mallory is understandably hurt and decides to give up all technology in an attempt to get over him. She finds an old list of her grandmas and thinks life in the early 60s was better without the modern technology. So, I liked that aspect of the story, going back to the basics and cutting out technology. Although, she does get a little extreme, but I guess that’s the point. I thought the romance was okay, the “hero” seemed like a nice guy and was genuinely interested in Mallory. The side stories with the family added some depth to the story, but I kind of prefer straight romance with my YA contemporaries. At times I thought it was a little wordy or overly descriptive, but overall I thought it was a cute story.  

 Content: Clean.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Divinely Designed by Rachael R Anderson

It all begins with calamity, faith, and a flat tire. Seeking liberation from recent heartache, Kennedy Jackson leaves her hometown and moves to Arizona to work as an interior designer. She thinks she is ready for a new start, but her heart still needs some convincing. When she bumps into a handsome stranger on the highway, she starts the ride of her life on a road of divine design that will lead to her dreams if she only has the faith to follow it
This is the second time I’ve read this and I enjoyed it just as much this time around. I could be wrong, but I think this is Rachael’s first published book. I think her books just keep getting better and better. I enjoy the dialog and plots of her books. She writes likable characters. I liked our heroine Kennedy, she was a lot of fun. I liked her outlook on life and that she was just a fun person to be around. I also liked Braxton, he was a good leading man. I thought they had good chemistry together. I liked that they were friends first and the romance naturally grew from there. Overall, a fun, lighthearted read. Content: Clean.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

For What It's Worth by Karey White

Twenty-four year-old, Abby Benson has dreams of owning her own wedding cake shop. An inheritance from her aunt gives her the ability to make those dreams come true. She hires Dane, a handsome contractor, to help her get the bakery up and running and soon they’re moving toward their own happy ending.

Unsure what to charge for her cakes, Abby has a crazy idea to let the customers decide what they think their cake is worth. This plan has its ups and downs, but the novelty of the idea makes her a local celebrity. When she is interviewed on television about the unusual idea, business booms and Abby has cake adventures she never dreamed possible. But as her fame grows, Abby is swept up in a whirlwind that threatens everything she values. With the challenges that face her, will she be able to determine what is worth the most?
I wish this book had pictures! I would have loved to see pictures of these amazing cakes that Abby was making. They sounded so pretty. I thought this was a cute book. I liked the overall plot of Abby starting her own wedding cake bakery. The bakery sounded cute and I would have loved to get my wedding cake done there. I thought it was fun hearing about the different customers and some of her experiences. Abby’s business gets successful a lot quicker than she had planned and it was interesting to see how she handled that and how she learns to balance her priorities. The romance was okay, I didn’t really feel much between them. I guess their conversations and stuff just didn’t do much for me. It was a nice side story, but by the end it didn’t sweep me off my feet. While I normally love the romance in books, I actually enjoyed the other aspects of this story better. Overall, it was a cute story and I will definitely check out more from Ms. White. Content: Clean.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

Seventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.

So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she's beginning to enjoy his company.

She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about.
I have been looking forward to reading this since I finished the authors first novel, Pivot Point. While Pivot Point had more of a fantasy feel to it, The Distance Between Us was a contemporary YA story. The characters are seventeen and still in high school. I actually thought they were a little older, and since there is no time spent with them at school it felt more like a New Adult book to me.

I enjoyed the story and had a hard time putting it down. I liked out main characters Caymen and Xander. I like that things started out slow where they built more of a friendship before things progressed to anything else. I don’t really buy into the insta-love stories so I thought this was a refreshing change. There is even a bit of a love-triangle, which was handled really well and was believable.

I admit I was expecting something lighthearted, maybe along the lines of Janette Rallison (not sure why), but the book is a little more series than that. It has its funny moments, but there are also other issues going on that I didn’t see coming. When you start to realize Caymen’s mom has been keeping something secret I got a little nervous.  I don’t really like reading too much drama and after reading Glimmer of Hope by Sarah Eden I was nervous what her mom’s secret was going to be. I guess I was expecting the worst and it did keep me from really enjoying the story. I think know that I know what the secret is I would enjoy the book a little more. (hide spoiler)] It’s not until the end that we find out what is going on. When I got to the 90% mark I started to wonder how things were going to wrap up. I’m assuming this is a standalone and if that’s the case I kind of wish the last 10% of the book or so would have happened earlier in the story. There are just so many questions I have and would have liked to see play out earlier in the book. Like, Caymen finding out her mom’s secret about her parents. Having Caymen get to know her grandparents and how their lifestyle would affect her. Does Caymen ever find her dad and what was the story that made him leave. What happens with Xander and Caymen? Where do they end up going to school, do they go to the same school? I want to know that now that they are finally a couple if they will stay together and get their happily ever after. (hide spoiler)] I did enjoy the story though and it was fun to see their relationship unfold. I did want Caymen to question him about things a little more. Maybe it’s just me, but she keeps quite a lot where if I were in the same situation he would be peppered with questions until my very curious mind was at ease.

Overall, I enjoyed it and have added Kasie West to my auto-buy author list. I know I will love whatever she writes. If you enjoy the contemporary YA genre you have to check this one out.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson

Kate Worthington knows her heart and she knows she will never marry. Her plan is to travel to India instead—if only to find peace for her restless spirit and to escape the family she abhors. But Kate’s meddlesome mother has other plans. She makes a bargain with Kate: India, yes, but only after Kate has secured—and rejected—three marriage proposals.

Kate journeys to the stately manor of Blackmoore determined to fulfill her end of the bargain and enlists the help of her dearest childhood friend, Henry Delafield. But when it comes to matters of love, bargains are meaningless and plans are changeable. There on the wild lands of Blackmoore, Kate must face the truth that has kept her heart captive. Will the proposal she is determined to reject actually be the one thing that will set her heart free?

I was so excited when I saw this was available for review on Netgalley (what a great website!), but I admit I was a tiny bit nervous as well. Would it be as good as Edenbrooke? Well, I was not disappointed. Right from the start I knew I was going to like this one, especially our hero Henry. He was perfect, I loved everything about him. He has the best lines; I had to re-read a few of the scenes between him and Kate. I thought Henry and Kate had great chemistry, I loved them together. You do wonder though how things are going to work out and what is keeping them apart. I loved the flashback scenes and a part of me wanted to slap Kate for not realizing what was in front of her! But, I can’t go into that without spoilers, but it does make sense why. I liked Kate, even more as the story goes on. She was  genuinely a good person and has a good heart. I like that even though she is still discovering herself, she was confident and intelligent. She sees the good in others and doesn’t hold grudges for those who do not like her. Her family was awful! Her mother, wow. There are just so many things I’d like to write, but I don’t want to give any spoilers.

I thought Blackmoore had a different feel to it than Edenbrooke, maybe it was the obstacles they had to overcome to be together, or how awful Kate’s family is. But the romance was great, filled with tension and the wondering if things are going to work out. All I know is, Henry gives Phillip a run for his money! It was a great story with great characters. I again loved the scenes with Henry and Kate, especially on the tower. Mmmm. This is one of those books you’ll want to re-read as soon as you finish.

Content: Clean.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Summer Book Trek Challenge

My friend posted this on Facebook and I thought it sounded like a lot of fun. New LDSFiction is hosting a challenge to read LDS authors during the month of July (you don’t have to be LDS to participate). They will be giving away prizes throughout the month as well. I was a little surprised by how many LDS authors were out there, I guess I never gave it too much thought. I was familiar with some, but surprised with others. I had come up with a list of about fifty books, but even I can’t read that fast. So, for now I’ve narrowed it down to thirty. I know there is no way I’ll be able to read thirty books next month with everything I have going on, but I just couldn’t narrow it down anymore.  

Traci H Abramson       Deep Cover                           
Nancy C Allen              The Grecian Princess             
Heather Moore           Heart of the Ocean                
Rachael Anderson     Divinely   Designed         
Rachel A Nunes           A Bid for Love                   
Clair Paulson               Switchback                             
Anita Stansfield           Towers of Brierley                 
Josie Kilpack                Lemon Tart                            
Karey White                For What Its Worth               
Wanted                       Kathi O Peterson                    
Natalie Whipple          Transparent                           
Kasie West                  Distance Between Us             
Sian Ann Bessey          Within the Dark Hills             
Krista L Jensen             The Orchard               
Stacy Henrie                Lady Outlaw                           
Michele A Bell             A Modest Proposal     
Lindsey Leavitt                  Going Vintage      
Rachael Anderson       Working it Out                       
Jordan McCollum        I, Spy                                       
Tristi Pinkston             Turning Pages                        
Jennifer Clark              Knight of Redmond                
Stephanie Fowers        With a Kiss                             
Lynn Kurland               Dreams of Stardust                
Cindy Bennett             Rapunzel Untangled               
Cheree Alsop               Thief Prince                            
Kelly Oram                  Seriel Hottie                           
Shannen Camp            Finding June                           
Jenni James                 Sleeping Beauty                     
Ally Condie                  Reached                                 
Jenniffer Wardell        Fairy Godmothers, Inc.                       

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Longing for Home by Sarah M Eden

Twenty-six-year-old Katie Macauley has placed all her hope in Hope Springs, a small town in the 1870 Wyoming Territory. But if she wants to return home to Ireland to make amends with her estranged family, she'll need to convince the influential Joseph Archer to hold true to his word and keep her on his payroll as his housekeeper despite her Irish roots. The town is caught in an ongoing feud between the Irish and the "Reds" the frontiersmen who would rather see all the Irish run out of town and the Irish immigrants who are fighting to make a home for themselves in the New World. When Joseph agrees to keep Katie on as his housekeeper, the feud erupts anew, and Katie becomes the reluctant figurehead for the Irish townsfolk. As the violence escalates throughout the town, Katie must choose between the two men who have been vying for her love though only one might be able to restore hope to her heart.

I liked this one. It wasn’t quite what I was expecting, but overall I liked it. Our heroine, Katie, has a lot of spunk. She has had a very hard life and is pretty hard on herself. She has moved to Wyoming to try and earn enough money to move back to Ireland to help out her estranged family. Once there she finds a new family and friends who love and accept her. With their friendship she really starts to warm up and open her heart to letting people in. Her sad story is a constant part of the story and you can’t help feeling sorry for her and rooting for her to find peace.

When she arrives in the small town of Hope Springs it stirs up an old rivalry between the Irish and non-Irish. I know these prejudices existed, but it was sure hard to read about. I have never been able to understand how people can be so cruel to one another, especially over something as stupid as where they were born. It is especially hard to read about supposedly Christian people who would hate someone just because of their nationality. And it’s sad that their preacher would encourage this kind of discrimination. He should know better.

So, aside from Katie’s sad past and all the turmoil with the townsfolk, I think what I had the hardest time with was the love-triangle. I am just not a fan of these, as many of you know. While I loved both Joseph and Tavish, I always feel this plot distracts from the courtship. Both guys are hard working, charming and care a great deal for Katie. I liked that they put her first and were always doing things to support her and make her feel welcome. I'm think I'm on Team Tavish, but I sure hope there is someone for Joseph. Since this is the first book in the series, hopefully it will end with everyone getting their own happily ever after.

It did seem like the first in a series, where there is a lot of set-up and back story, but not a whole lot happens. I look forward to continuing the series and seeing where things go. If you like historical fiction I suggest picking it up, Ms. Eden is a great storyteller.

Content: Clean.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Glimmer of Hope by Sarah M. Eden

Stunning Miranda Harford once had the world at her feet. She was young, carefree, and desperately in love. But when her new husband left for London without her, her world fell apart. Devastated by his abandonment, Miranda fled their home, taking residence at her husband’s rarely visited countryside estate. For three years, she lived alone. But now, as the holidays draw near, an unexpected visitor arrives . . .

Carter Alexander Harford, Seventh Viscount Devereaux, is a man driven to succeed. His work is his life, and the position of Prime Minister of England is within reach. But in truth, Carter is a man haunted by lost love. Estranged from his beautiful wife, Carter is shocked to find Miranda—the woman he’d loved and who he believes has left him—in residence at his country home.

As plans for a holiday party move forward, the uneasy couple realizes that to avoid further scandal, they must keep up appearances in a charade of marital happiness. Thrust together by fate, it quickly becomes clear that they have both been living beneath a conspired cloud of misunderstanding. As family, career, and social pressures threaten to keep them apart, can love have even a glimmer of hope?

I don’t remember exactly how I came upon Ms. Eden’s books, but it was a few years ago while I was living in San Diego. I read the description on a few of her books and Through All Hopes stood out to me. I love the whole lost-love plot and this one sounded especially good. I went to Amazon and ordered a copy. I waited and waited and after a month or two Amazon emailed me and said they were unable to fulfill the request. As some of you know, Ms. Eden’s earlier books were no longer being published at that time, I believe she was working with a new publisher and had learned that she would eventually be re-releasing them. I was so disappointed; I wanted to read Through All Hopes and was sad I wouldn’t be able to. At least not for a long time. When her books started coming out again I couldn’t wait, after reading Courting Miss Lancaster (I think that was the first one re-published) I knew I was hooked. I was beyond excited when I saw on Ms. Eden’s Facebook page the other day that Glimmer of Hope was coming out and that it was the new version of Through All Hopes.

So, my expectations for this one may have been a little high. While I wasn’t by any means disappointed, I was surprised how the story unfolded. I liked our heroine Miranda, she is easy to like and relate to. The story starts three years after her husband, Carter, abandoned her. I liked that the story picks up right when Miranda and Carter meet again after being separated for three years. You have a lot of questions about what happened to cause the separations, since from each characters POV each thought the other had left. So there is a bit of a mystery about what had kept them apart. There is some great tension between the two and a lot of hurt feelings. I liked that we got to hear from Carter’s POV, I think we actually get more of him than Miranda. I liked seeing the growth and understanding he goes through. I wasn’t too surprised by the reasons for the separation, but it does break your heart to think of all they had missed out on. tupid interfering family! (hide spoiler)] On top of everything else going on with them reuniting and a sudden house party, there is also a mystery about Miranda. Something is just a little off. 

[ It turns out that Miranda has a heart condition and is not that healthy. She tires easily and is on a special diet. One where her mean mother-in-law forbids her to partake of. The seriousness of her condition I think took me by surprise. It definitely makes Carter really reconsider his life and decisions, but it’s also kind of a downer. I was left feeling a little uncertain about their future. I would have LOVED an epilogue where it’s a few years down the road and they were still happy and she was doing well. Maybe have a baby or two. Although, with her condition having a baby might not be the safest thing. I still would have liked a little more closure in regards to her health. I loved that they reconciled and it seemed genuine that they would put each other first and be sure to communicate better in the future. (hide spoiler)] Overall, I really enjoyed the story and I probably would end up liking it more the second time around. Ms. Eden can’t write fast enough, I love her stories and characters and I’m always sad when I finish her books. Maybe I should read slower?

Content: Squeaky Clean.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Pivot Point by Kasie West

Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier . . .

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.


I was really impressed with this one! I thought the plot was pretty original and the writing was really well done. Our lead Addie was likable and easy to relate to. I liked her sarcastic personality. She has the ability when presented with a choice to see how things will play out depending on which decision she makes. The story alternates between two possible futures and at the end she has to decide which path to take. What an interesting superpower! Addie doesn’t abuse her power and up until now has only used it for short time frames. We also have a couple love interests, Duke and Trevor. It’s not your typical love-triangle though and I really liked how it was handled. It was fun to see how these two different relationships play out. I started out on one team and ended up on another. I ended up loving the relationship between Trevor and Addie. Trevor was great, I especially liked when he finally made his interest know. I liked that they had a friendship first and it grows to more. I did like Duke though, and even despite everything, I still like him. I also liked how the stories kind of overlap, things that would happen in one “reality” would happen in the other. As the story progresses a couple mysteries are presented as well, I thought that added some fun suspense to the story. Especially the end, there are a few surprises thrown in that added a lot. I was glad there was an epilogue, it wrapped things up nicely. I’m excited to read the next book!

Content: Clean. Mild violence.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Breaking Point by Kristen Simmons

After faking their deaths to escape from prison, Ember Miller and Chase Jennings have only one goal: to lay low until the Federal Bureau of Reformation forgets they ever existed. Near-celebrities now for the increasingly sensationalized tales of their struggles with the government, Ember and Chase are recognized and taken in by the Resistance—an underground organization working to systematically take down the government. At headquarters, all eyes are on the sniper, an anonymous assassin taking out FBR soldiers one by one. Rumors are flying about the sniper’s true identity, and Ember and Chase welcome the diversion….

I liked this one as much as the first book, maybe a little more. I really like our main characters America and Chase, they have a great relationship. I love how they are totally there for each other and fiercely loyal. And THANK YOU there is no love triangle! There is so much going on in the story and I am just so glad that stupid plot device was not used in this series! Chase is a great leading man. True, he is a bit on the quite site, but I kinda like that about him. He is so sweet with America and understands her so well. He is also very protective of her. You don’t mess with his girl. America is a good heroine. She is easy to like and root for.

This is a little dark though. America and Chase do not have it easy. There is a lot of drama and sad stuff throughout the story. It just seems like one thing happens after another. America and Chase stick together and really help overcome everything that is thrown at them.

I’m not sure how everything is going to be wrapped up in the next book. This one does end with a bit of a cliff hanger. We did get some things resolved, but we’re also left with a lot of questions. I look forward to reading the next book and hope America and Chase can get their happily ever after.

Content: Pretty clean. Mild language and sexual content. No sex scenes, but mild kissing scenes.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Elite by Kiera Cass

Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea. America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide. Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.

I have mixed feelings about this one. I love the overall story, setting and characters. I think it’s well written and easy to get into. It really is a fun series and I look forward to seeing how everything wraps up in the next book. On the other hand, I absolutely hate love-triangles. I guess I don’t mind if they are a bit more subtle, and I’m sure they can work. It just doesn’t work for me in this book. I’ll get to that in a bit; I think it’s just one of those things I’m going to have to rant about. But first, I’ll stick with the positive. I like that there is still the dating competition going on, I also liked that it has been narrowed down to six girls. I like the dystopian world and how America is slowly realizing more about the world around her and the injustices that are going on with her government. I also like that she is starting to realize that she wants to do something about it and to help make a change. For the most part I love America’s character, I love how kind she is and loyal to her friends. She has a lot of good qualities.

All of that kind of takes a back seat to the love triangle though. Instead of focusing on America’s growth and her feelings about becoming a princess, we’re forced to live through a ping-pong match of America’s emotions. I thought the love triangle was really over the top, it literally felt like every chapter she was jumping from Aspen to Maxon. It got to the point where I was just sick of both of them. It made it hard to root for either and for her. I think there is a LOT of potential for an awesome love story, but it has been tainted by this silly LT. There is so much going on with the other girls, the King, and America learning what it takes to be a princess that we don’t need the LT angle thrown in our face. It was just too much for me. I really debated about giving this three stars, but I do love the rest of the story and I HOPE that the next book will not continue the LT, course I said the same thing in my review for book one.

Overall, the parts without the LT were awesome. I really enjoy the story. I think it’s a fun series and I think a lot of people will enjoy it too. I think most people probably don’t mind LT, so that aspect won’t bother them. I however, am sick of them!

Content: Mild violence. Mild kissing. Mild language.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Eyes of Ember by Rebecca L Ethington

Joclyn is in hiding, hunted by the man she still desperately loves. Ryland is gone. But, Joclyn’s heart desperately begs her to hold out hope. Ilyan. The man who once stalked her, is now Joclyn’s protector, the only thing she has left. He protects Joclyn from the men who seek to end her life, and while she is haunted by dreams where Ryland begs her to break the bond between them. Ilyan trains and prepares her, teaching her everything she needs to know in the hope that one day she can avenge Ryland, if not protect herself from him.  And then there is her father.  The man who has never been there, is suddenly responsible for everything. And who he is has made Joclyn into something she never wanted to be. The Silnį»³.

My Review: This is the second book in the Imdalind series. I don’t really know how to write this review without giving things away. In some ways I liked the first book more, the second book is a bit darker and Jocelyn is going through some tough situations. Even though she is supposed to be super powerful, a lot of the book is spent with her healing and afraid. I would have liked to see her more confident and really embrace all her powers. I also kind of wish her character were older. Which brings me to Ilyan. I have to say, I can see why so many people probably switch from Team Ryland to Team Ilyan, but I’m still on the fence. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a great guy and his personal story is pretty cool and how loyal he is to Jocelyn. I think part of my problem is that he is like 1000 and she is 16. Gross. I just couldn’t get their age differences out of my head. I also didn’t feel a lot of chemistry between them, at least not a romantic one. Maybe I was still holding out hope for Ryland, I loved him in the first book and my heart breaks for him in the second book. While you’re always wondering about Rylands true intentions, a part of me just think he is another victim in his father’s evil schemes. I just missed the Ryland from book one. Which made me hold out on really warming up to Ilyan.

I do like how original the story is. The author has created her own mythology and magic. At times the names are a tad confusing, at least for me, but overall I like the world she has created. I think the next two books take place from a different characters POV, I’m a little nervous about that. Book two ends with quite a few questions and we might not get back to Jocelyn and Iylan’s story for a few books. It seems like jumping to different characters might throw off the flow of the story. Hopefully I’m wrong. Overall, it’s a fun, original series.

Content: Pretty clean. Some violence and mildly disturbing elements.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Kiss of Fire by Rebecca L Ethington

 Joclyn Despain has been marred by a brand on her skin. She doesn't know why the mark appeared on her neck, but she doesn't want anyone to see it, including her best friend Ryland, who knows everything else about her. The scar is the reason she hides herself behind baggy clothes, and won't let the idea of kissing Ryland enter her mind, no matter how much she wants to. The scar is the reason she is being hunted. If only she knew that she was. If only she had known that the cursed stone her estranged father sent for her 16th birthday would trigger a change in her. Now, she is being stalked by a tall blonde man, and is miraculously throwing her high school bully ten feet in the air. Joclyn attempts to find some answers and the courage to follow her heart. When Ryland finds her scar; only he knows what it means, and who will kill her because of it.

Kiss of Fire is the first in the Imalind triology. It has been awhile since I’ve read a YA fantasy book and I thought Kiss of Fire was a fun way to get back into the genre. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed the book, since it was free and self published (I could be wrong on that) I didn’t have the highest expectations. I liked our main characters Jocelyn, Ryland, Ilyan and Wyn.

I thought the book was well written and flowed pretty well, for the most part. I liked the beginning and was excited when towards the middle things started to pick up. The last half went back and forth for me, at times I got a tad bored. The end was good though and left me wanting to read the next book. I think it will be a fun series. Oh, I also liked that it was clean!

I just have to say it. I am not a fan of love triangles. It’s not super present in this book, but I have a feeling it will be in the next one. I just think it is WAY over done. It seems like every YA series out there has a love triangle now, maybe that is why I have been avoiding the genre. Let’s be original and not use love triangles as plot devices anymore, okay?

Content: Clean!

Similar Reads:
The Emerald Talisman by Brenda Pandos
Reckless Magic by Rachel Higginson

Friday, March 29, 2013

New Blog Design

It was long overdue and with the help of Lori from Imagination Designs, I finally updated my blog. I still need to rearrange my side bar, but overall I am very happy with how everything turned out. With this fresh new look I am hoping to get back into doing more book reviews and updating the blog more often.

Happy Reading!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Second Chances by Melanie Jacobson

After walking out of a thankless job at a prestigious marketing firm, feisty California entrepreneur Louisa Gibson is going into business for herself. Lou's pioneering venture, The Mormon Bachelor, is a reality dating web series sure to be fabulous advertising for her new marketing firm. But shortly before filming begins, the unthinkable happens -- Trentyn, a.k.a. The Bachelor, gets a girlfriend. And Lou needs a new leading man -- fast. Enter Nick, Lou's devastatingly handsome ex-boyfriend. He's the stereotypical actor: shallow, self-serving...and perfect for the job. Despite Nick's attempts to reestablish their friendship and the growing spark between them, Lou is determined to keep her distance. The show must go on -- but what's a girl to do when the Mr. Wrong of the past just may be the Mr. Right of the future?
My thoughts:
I really liked this one. I’ve found a few “reality dating” books lately that have been a lot of fun. I love watching The Bachelor and its fun to read more of the behind the scenes action. I liked our leading characters, Nick and Louisa. They had fun chemistry together. I admit, there were times I wondered what Nick’s motivations where, but I knew this is a HEA type book and was looking forward to seeing how things were going to work out for the two of them. Both really had to make some changes for things to work out between them this time around.

I did think twenty-one girls was a bit much. I think he should have had to date a smaller number of women. I also was confused why they only “aired” about five minutes of each date. I don’t think that would be enough time to really show any of the date or conversations. That five minutes would take up all the mid-date and end-of-date interviews. I think for a web show at least twenty minutes would have made a little more sense. At least to me. There were a few other minor things, but overall I thought it was really enjoyable. It kept me reading and when I did have to put it down to take care of kids, I was always eager to get back to it. Will definitely be a re-read for me.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Everard Legacy by Regina Scott

This was a fun new regency series, one that you would definitely want to read in order. There is an overlapping mystery throughout and you may be a little lost if read out of order. Each book also has a lovely romance that really outshines the mystery aspects. It did feel at time that the mystery was there to help bring the characters together. I read these more for the relationship than for the mystery. The first three books focus on the story of three men, two brothers and a cousin. They all at one point in their lives came to live with their uncle and are very close. They are brought together again when their uncles dies under mysterious circumstances, but also when they find out he had a daughter they never knew about. The first three books of the series focuses on uncovering the truth behind their uncles death. The last book takes place about eight years later, but has strong ties to the first three books. It is probably the only one that could really stand on its own, but would probably be better appreciated if read in order.
Overall, I thought it was a fun series. I liked each of the different romances and thought we were given some very likable characters. It was fun to see the different couples come together. I especially liked the last book, it was nice to see how close everyone was. These would fall under Christian fiction, to be honest, I kind of skipped some of the preaching stuff and all of the prayers were in italics (which were easy to skip). Not that there is anything wrong with that stuff, but I prefer to have good characters without the obvious preaching. It was pretty mild compared to some and again easy to overlook if you don’t like that stuff, but also well done if you do.
Content: Clean
Reading Order:
Book One: The Rogue’s Reform
Book Two: The Captain’s Courtship
Book Three: The Rakes Redemption
Book Four: The Heiress Homecoming

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Redeeming the Rogue by CJ Chase

With a chip on her shoulder and a pistol in her pocket, Mattie Fraser comes to London determined to find answers. What fate befell her brother after he was forced to join the British navy? Military official Kit DeChambelle knows something, she's sure. But can she trust him—or anyone— as a conspiracy of silence surrounds her? Kit knows altogether too much—about the guilt that drives Mattie, and the peril she faces. The battle against Napoleon is over, but for Kit, peace is elusive. In helping this brave, stubborn woman, he may be endangering her further. Especially if she learns about the orders he's received, placing them on opposite sides…

I liked this one. I thought it was well written and had a pretty good plot. I liked Mattie and Kit; they both have pasts that they are trying to forget. There is a mystery that brings them together and they have to rely on one another to try and figure things out. There were a few twists that I didn’t see coming and I wanted to keep reading to see what would happen next. I thought the Christian elements were okay, not overdone, but also seemed a tad forced. I think I would have preferred if all the preaching had been left out.

The romance part felt a bit unbelievable. I could see them maybe being friends, but by the end I wasn’t sure where all their sudden feelings of love were coming from. It’s only been a few days and most of that time has been spent not trusting each other, so how do we get from total lack of trust to head over heels in love? They are obviously physically attracted to one another, but they have nothing in common. They come from totally different worlds and upbringings. I want a happily ever after and that’s what I got, so I guess I can’t complain too much.

I just have to say, the title and cover don’t really match the book. First, the title would imply that our hero was a rogue. Aside from his habit of drinking a lot, he is a really nice guy. He loves his family, friends and goes out of his way to help those he cares about. So, I’m still not sure where the whole rogue thing comes from, aside from being a catchy title. Second, the cover would imply, at least to me, that the story takes place on a ship. It doesn’t. Owell.

I look forward to reading more from Ms. Chase.

Content: Clean.

Reading Order:
Book One: Redeeming the Rogue
Book Two: The Reluctant Earl

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