Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Murder on the Moor - A Review

Published - February 2017, Bethany House Publishers
Author - Julianna Deering
Series - Drew Farthering Mystery Book 5
Title - Murder on the Moor
Format - ebook, paper
Find on Amazon

About the book (from Amazon):At the urgent request of an old school friend, Drew and Madeline Farthering come to Bloodworth Park Lodge in the midst of the Yorkshire moors, a place as moody and mysterious as a Brontë hero. There have been several worrisome incidents out on the moor--property destroyed, fires started, sheep and cattle scattered--and worst of all, the vicar has been found dead on the steps of the church. Drew's friend is obviously smitten with his bride of eight months, though it's hard to imagine what she sees in the awkward man. Drew can't help wondering if her affections lie more with the man's money and estate, while her romantic interests focus on their fiery Welsh gamekeeper. As the danger grows ever closer, it's up to Drew to look past his own prejudices, determine what is really going on, and find the killer before it's too late.

My thoughts:
I'm really glad that these books don't necessarily have to be read in order. I think I've read books 1, 3, and 5. Of the ones I've read, I think that this one may be my favorite one.

First of all Drew and Madeline are delightful. I've forgotten how much I've enjoyed them. I also really enjoyed the fact that there are TONS of suspects, but as a reader, I didn't really know which one was the killer. I've read some mysteries where the killer's identity is known in the first few chapters. That wasn't the case with this book. I had an idea, and I ended up being wrong. But the killer's identity didn't completely surprise me either.

I loved how Drew and Madeline both almost stumble on the clues in the case. This book really was a delightful read. I found it to be a true mystery.

I received a copy for free from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. I was not required to like the book, only give my opinion. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Recommended to fans of mysteries

Rating - 4 stars

Monday, March 27, 2017

Murder is No Accident - A Review

Published - March, 2017, Revell Books
Series - Hidden Springs Mystery
Author - Ann H. Gabhart
Format - ebook, paper
Find on Amazon

Hidden Springs has seen its share of mysteries. So Michael Keane is hoping that things settle down, finally. Yet when a woman is found dead at the Chandler mansion, questions arise. Was it an accident or was it murder?

I've really enjoyed this series. The characters are quirky and loveable. I've come to enjoy these books.

I love how Michael is determined to keep the town safe and that he somehow finds himself in the midst of mysteries. This one kept me turning pages all the way to the end. I had an idea as to who was the bad guy, and I wanted to see if I was right.

I received a copy of the book for free from the publisher as part of the Revell Reads program. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Recommended to fans of mysteries.

Rating - 4 stars

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday - Top Ten Books on my Spring To Read List

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the Broke & the Bookish

I know it's been awhile since I've participated in Top Ten Tuesday. There are a couple of reasons for that - 1. I haven't liked the more recent topics and 2. The hosting blog hasn't had a long term schedule.

But anyway, I'm back with this week's.

Today's topic is about the top ten books on our spring reading lists. My list contains titles that I hope to be able to get to this spring. Some are already out. Others haven't been published as yet.

Here they are, in no particular order...

1. True to You by Becky Wade - It's the start of a new series, and I can't wait.

2. Rescue Me by Susan May Warren - Book 2 in her latest series. I am looking forward to reading this one when I get a chance.

3. Illusionist's Apprentice by Kristy Cambron - I've got a review copy of this one. I need to just charge my Kindle and read it!

4. Long Time Gone by Mary Connealy - Her books are always a delight.

5. For Love and Honor by Jody Hedlund - This is the conclusion to her YA series. I've enjoyed the others, so I know I'll enjoy it.

6. When Tides Turn by Sarah Sundin - The conclusion to her current WWII series. I've enjoyed her books, and am looking forward to this one.

7. Behind the Scenes by Jen Turano - Her books make giggle each time I read one.

8. Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier - I'm currently reading the first one, Ruby Red, as I've rented it from the library. I think I'll be needing to hit the library up soon for books 2 & 3.

9. Emerald Green by Kerstin Gier - Book 3 in the series that I'm currently reading from the library.

10. Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan - This has been on my reading list forever! I've gotten it from the library, so I should be able to dive into it soon.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Still Life - A Review

Published - February 2017, Bethany House
Series - Chesapeake Valor Book 2
Author - Dani Pettrey
Title - Still Life
Format - ebook, paper, audio
Find on Amazon

About the book (from Amazon):
Blacklisted in the photography business over a controversial shot, Avery Tate answered an ad for a crime scene photographer. She expected to be laughed at, but crime scene analyst Parker Mitchell hired her outright--and changed her life. But six months ago, when her feelings for Parker became too strong, she left his employ to sort out her heart. Now, for the first time, Avery is facing the world that rejected her to attend the gallery opening of a photography exhibit and support her best friend, who modeled for the show. But the only image of her friend is a chilling photo of her posing as if dead--and the photographer insists he didn't take the shot. Worse, her friend can't be found. She immediately calls Parker for help. As Avery, Parker, and his friends in law enforcement dig into the mystery, they find themselves face-to-face with a relentless and deadly threat.

My Thoughts:
I've loved Dani Pettrey's books since I first discovered her with her debut novel. I know that I will get a book that is a page turner and well written. This one was no exception. 

While this one does stand alone in the series, I highly recommend reading book 1 first as Parker, Avery, and the rest are all introduced in that one. What can I say about this book? It was wonderful. I read it rather quickly, I love the relationship between Parker and his buddies as well as between Parker and Avery. There were so many times that my heart just broke for what Avery went through in her life. I love how what is one person's problem becomes everyone's because that's how Parker and his friends are. 

I cannot wait until the third book, Declan's story, comes out later this year!

I received a copy of the book from the author to help promote. I was not required to like the book, only to give my honest opinion.

Recommended to fans of Dee Henderson, Dani Pettrey, romantic suspense, Lynette Eason, Irene Hannon

Rating - 4 stars

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Moving Target - A Review

Published - February 2017, Revell Books
Series - Elite Guardians Book 3
Author - Lynette Eason
Title - Moving Target
Format - ebook, paper, audio
Find on Amazon

Maddy McKay and Quinn Holcombe didn't show up for Quinn's surprise birthday party, despite Maddy assuring their friends that they would be there. Their friends know something's wrong, and when neither of them can be reached, their friends are really concerned. But the question is - where are they? Maddy awoke to find herself in a cement room with no knowledge of how she got there. Her one consolation is that Quinn is with her. Soon this pair must use all of their wits to try to survive a cat and mouse game where they are the bait and a serial killer is the hunter. Because if they fail, they die.

I've enjoyed each of the books in this series. This one was no exception. I loved getting to know Maddy and Quinn more. In some ways this book felt like a cross between the Hunger Games and Survivor. This was a very fast read for me. It's been one of the few books this year that I really couldn't put down. The action kept me guessing and I ended up really enjoying the book.

I received a copy from the publisher for free as part of the Revell Reads blog program. I was not required to like the book, only give my honest opinion.

Recommended to fans of Irene Hannon, Lynette Eason, Dee Henderson

Rating - 4 stars

Monday, February 20, 2017

Home on the Range - A Review

Published - October 2016, Waterbrook/Multnomah
Series - Double S Ranch Book 2
Author - Ruth Logan Herne
Title - Home on the Range
Format - ebook, paper, audio
Find on Amazon

About the book (from Goodreads):
A cowboy romance with a heart of gold, in Home on the Range author Ruth Logan Herne returns readers to the Double S Ranch where God and family are first, but love is certain to follow the Stafford menfolk. Nick made all the wrong choices for all the wrong reasons. His father had failed at marriage and fatherhood. Nick was determined to show him up. He'd be a better husband, better father and a better ranch manager than Sam Stafford ever hoped to be. But Nick's wife Whitney hated the ranch and she walked out on Nick and their two beautiful daughters three years ago. For a long time Nick pretended everything was fine and when his stubborn nature is finally challenged by trouble with his young girls, he's faced with the changes he should have made long ago. Psychologist Dr. Elsa Andreas had a thriving family therapy practice, a school commission, a good life, but tragedy pushes Elsa to walk away from her life. Three years later, she's tucked herself in the backwoods of Gray's Glen. When her sister encourages her to help Nick Stafford's daughters, Elsa takes a chance. But Nick's ex-wife comes back to town, threatening the girls' newfound stability. Can Nick find the forgiveness and Else the courage to build their own "Home on the Range"?

My Thoughts:
I enjoyed the first book in this series. This one I struggled with. I struggled to connect to the characters. I struggled to stay interested in the plot. Honestly, I didn't care one way or the other about whether or not I finished the book. But this is a review title. So I struggled my way through it. 

I liked being able to catch up on the characters from the first book. I liked seeing Nick start to change. But I really felt blah about most of the book. 

Other readers are really enjoying this book, so please don't just take my word for it. This book is one that just wasn't for me. 

I received a copy of the book from the publisher for free as part of the Blogging for Books Program. I was not required to like the book, only give my honest opinion.

Rating - 2 stars

Good Good Father for Little Ones - A Review

Published - January 31, 2017, Thomas Nelson
Author - Chris Tomlin
Title - Good Good Father for Little Ones
Format - board book
Find on Amazon

About the book (from Amazon):
With sweet, rhyming text, Good Good Father for Little Ones explores many of the attributes that make God such a good, good Father: like a warrior, He protects you; like a teacher, He helps you learn and grow; like a doctor, He makes you feel better; like a farmer, He provides the food you need; like a musician, He brings you joy. Most of all, a good, good Father loves you! Based on the children’s picture book Good Good Father, this precious rhyming adaptation will leave little ones with a greater assurance that God truly is a good, good Father and they are loved by Him.

My Thoughts: 
I'm familiar with the Chris Tomlin song Good, Good Father. So when I saw this one up for review, I snatched it up!
Let me just say, that this book is precious! I loved the rhyming aspect of it. I loved the illustrations. When I shared it with my friend's little ones, they loved it. The older two were able to read it by themselves, and the youngest loved the pictures. 
This book is so simple. The message in it is a good reminder to everyone that God is a good Father.
I received the book for free from the publisher as part of the Booklook Blogging Program. My thoughts and opinions are my own.
Recommended to fans of Chris Tomlin, parents of young children, Sunday School teachers
Rating - 4 stars

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Saturday Scribbles Vol 3.1

It's been a while my friends. This is the first Scribbles I've managed to write in 2017. The biggest reason is that I didn't really have anything to talk about. Technically I still don't, but wanted to give you something anyway.

So, let's see. What's been going on? I'm still reading, only not as many review titles as I've done in the past. I've currently got 3, maybe 4, reviews that I need to write. Work has been pretty busy too. We're getting ready to roll out Office 365 which means updating books for a minimum of 9 classes.

So I've been busy. And today's post is short.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

An Uncommon Courtship - A Review

Published - January 2017, Bethany House
Series - Hawthorne House Book 3
Author - Kristi Ann Hunter
Title - An Uncommon Courtship
Format - ebook, paper
Find on Amazon

Lord Trent Hawthorne has always dreamed of marrying for love. Yet when he finds himself in a compromising situation with Lady Adelaide Bell, he is honor bound to offer marriage. Adelaide is content to live life in the shadows. She found that easier until her sister married. Yet, now that she finds herself in a marriage of convenience, Adelaide is determined to make the best of it. Can she and Trent learn to live together and maybe fall in love in the process?

I was so excited to see this book. I'd been looking forward to this book for a while. I'll admit that I was a little sad not to see as much of either of Trent's sisters in this book, but I still enjoyed the story.

Trent was a character I wanted to know more about. He'd been a minor character in the other two books, so getting to know him was delightful. I positively adored his unusual group of servants. They were fascinating, and I could tell that they wanted their master and mistress to find happiness. I really liked it when Trent started courting his wife. I loved how he was determined to give her what she didn't have.

I cannot wait for the 4th book in this series - the one about Griffith.

I received this book from the publisher in order to share my honest opinion. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Recommended to fans of historical fiction, Karen Witemeyer, Kristi Ann Hunter, Jody Hedlund, Julie Klassen

Rating - 4 stars

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Never Forget - A Review

Published- January 2017, Northern Lights Press
Series - Beacons of Hope Book 5
Author - Jody Hedlund
Title - Never Forget
Format - ebook, paper
Find on Amazon

About the book:
Rose Island Lighthouse, Rhode Island June 1880 Will she betray his trust to stay on the island she loves? Abbie Watson is content to spend her days clamming, crabbing, and tending Rose Island Lighthouse. Her grandpa is the head light keeper, but his senility may lead to their eviction. Since leaving the island would kill her beloved Gramps, Abbie will do anything to keep him in the one place he knows and loves. Wealthy Nathaniel Winthrop III’s wild living has gained him a reputation as the ‘bad boy’ among the elite social circles of Newport. After a blow to the head in a yachting accident washes him up on Rose Island, Nathaniel has no memories of his past. Abbie tends the wounded stranger in her home only to realize he assumes they’re married. Although she knows she needs to correct Nathaniel’s mistake, his presence calms Gramps and provides a way to prevent eviction from the lighthouse. The longer the charade continues, the harder it gets for Abbie to tell Nathaniel the truth, more so as she begins to fall in love. Everyone she’s ever loved has abandoned her. Will Nathaniel leave her too, once he discovers he’s not really her husband?

My Thoughts:
I remember meeting Nathaniel in book 4. I was glad to get to know him a bit better in this book. I loved the fact that while he did have amnesia, he really did want to change from what he knew of himself. I loved the way that he treated Abbie. I loved how Abbie kept struggling to keep her grandfather in the home that he loved. 

This book was a wonderful conclusion to the series. It has Hedlund's usual style of romance blended with a touch of suspense. While the second book in the series remains my favorite, I happily devoured this book. 

I received the Kindle version of this book from the author to help influence the book. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Recommended to fans of historical fiction, Jody Hedlund, light houses, Karen Witemeyer

Rating - 4 stars

Monday, January 30, 2017

Story of Martin Luther King Jr & Story of Rosa Parks - A Review

Published - Worthy Books
Author - Johnny Ray Moore
Title - The Story of Martin Luther King Jr
Format - board book
Find on Amazon

About the book:
A simple story that tells young children why Martin Luther King Jr wanted to make a difference.

My Thoughts:
This was a very simple story. For young children, this is a great way to introduce them to MLK and help them understand that everyone is different.

Recommended to parents, elementary teachers.

I received this book from the publisher to share my honest opinion. My thoughts are my own.

Rating - 4 stars

Published - Worthy Books
Author - Patricia A Pingry
Title - The Story of Rosa Parks
Format - board book
Find on Amazon

About the book:
Rosa Parks is known as the "mother of the civil rights movement." This simple board book tells of how she got that name.

My Thoughts:
I remember hearing about Rosa Parks in school when I was young. I found this book to be very simple, and I can see children asking questions about the civil rights movement.

Recommended to parents, elementary teachers.

I received this book from the publisher to share my honest opinion. My thoughts are my own.

Rating - 4 stars

Monday, January 23, 2017

Moonbow Night - A Review

Published - January 2017, Revell Books
Author - Laura Frantz
Title - A Moonbow Night
Format - ebook, paper
Find on Amazon

Summary (from Amazon):
After fleeing Virginia, Temperance Tucker and her family established an inn along the Shawnee River. It's a welcome way station for settlers and frontiersmen traveling through the wild Cumberland region of Kentucke--men like Sion Morgan, a Virginia surveyor who arrives at the inn with his crew looking for an experienced guide. When his guide appears, Sion balks. He certainly didn't expect a woman. But it is not long before he must admit that Tempe's skill in the wilderness rivals his own. Still, the tenuous tie they are forming is put to the test as they encounter danger after danger and must rely on each other. With her signature sweeping style and ability to bring the distant past to vivid life, Laura Frantz beckons readers to join her in a land of Indian ambushes, conflicting loyalties, and a tentative love that meanders like a cool mountain stream.

My Thoughts:
This book was wonderful. It started off really slow, so it took me a while to get into it, but once I did, I really enjoyed it.

Unlike some of her other novels, the romance in this one takes a backseat to the story itself. I loved how both Sion and Tempe struggled with letting go of their pasts. I loved the detail about how the surveyors traveled. I never gave much thought to how the "frontier" was settled during the Revolution.

Fans of Laura Frantz will definitely enjoy this book. I look forward to what she has coming next.

I received a copy of this book for free as part of the Revell Reads review program. I was asked to give my honest opinion about this book. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Recommended to fans of Laura Frantz, Lori Benton, Jody Hedlund

Rating - 4 stars

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday - 2016 Releases I didn't get to read

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by the Broke & the Bookish.

Welcome to the first Top Ten I'm doing in 2017. Today's topic is about the 2016 releases that I wanted to read, but didn't get around to reading.

1. Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan - I've loved his Percy Jackson books, and when I read the first of the Magnus Chase books, I enjoyed it. I've really looked forward to this book. So perhaps, I'll get to it this year.

2. Heartless by Marissa Meyer - I couldn't work this one into my schedule when it was released. But I was given it for Christmas, so I'll be reading it this year.

3. Love Everlasting by Julie Lessman - Julie is one of my favorite authors. I had pre-ordered the book months before it released. But when it released, I wasn't in a reading mood. But I hope to get to it soon.

4. Worthy Heart by Susan Anne Mason - The first book, Irish Meadows, had been on my too read list for AGES. Mom had a copy, so I read it over Christmas. Rented this one from the library, and while I started it in 2016, I'll be finishing it this month.

5. One Enchanted Eve by Melissa Tagg - This is a really short novella that I know I'll love, but I've just not gotten around to it yet.

6. The Undoing of Saint Silvanus by Beth Moore - I've done a couple of her Bible studies over the years. I'm interested in seeing what her first fiction book is like.

7. Kissing Father Christmas by Robin Jones Gunn - Yes, I admit that there is a book by Robin that I've not gotten around to reading. It's been in my car since October.

8. Home on the Range by Ruth Logan Herne - Another one that I started in 2016, but haven't finished yet.

9. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton - I've seen this on a lot of blogs over the past year. I keep checking for it at the library. Hopefully, soon I'll find it.

10. The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury - As much as I enjoy fairy tale retellings, I'm sure to enjoy this one.