Thursday, July 20, 2017

Does It Compare to Lord and Lady Grantham?

Is a comparison between Daisy Goodwin’s debut The American Heiress and Downton Abbey? For those of us who have seen all the seasons of Downton Abbey and are waiting for the movie. Can Daisy’s book tide us over while we wait? 

Synopsis:

Mrs. Cash has great plans for her daughter Cora, and they do not involve the neighbor from the mansion down the street. Cora knows about these plans that her mother has for her and wants nothing to do with them. She tries to run away with her friend the neighbor but an accident occurs when they are discovered. Cora’s mother’s face is injured. So they go onto London England to meet a wealthy prospect with a title. Mrs. Cash thinks life will be perfect if Cora can land one. One day while riding Cora has an accident and meets the titled man of her dreams. Will their story be one of happily ever after or not? Does money really make people happy?

My Thoughts:

This story is nothing like Downton Abbey. I was very disappointed with it. I have loved Daisy’s more recent book Victoria. I do not understand the choices that Cora made. Ivo was a completely unsympathetic character. I wanted to say to him at the end of the book you deserve to lose everything. The book had a great start with interesting characters such as Cora, Mrs. Cash, and her maid. The pacing of the book lagged after she married. Then ending was underwhelming to me.

I love Daisy Goodwin’s writing and look forward to reading her next book.

Rating:

3/5

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

It is Time for the Grand Finale!

Have I got a beach read for you today! The Alaskan Quest series by Tracie Peterson is full of suspense, romance, and action. Today I am featuring Whispers ofWinter. Book three of the series. You can find the review for Summer of the Midnight Sun which is book one of the series here.

Synopsis:

Leah Kincaid and Helaina are waiting to hear back from Jayce Kincaid and Jacob Barringer.   Jayce is Leah’s husband and Jacob her brother.  Helaina wants a relationship with Jacob but does he?  At the end of book two Jayce and Jacob finally got a chance to go to the Arctic. One problem this trip has become rife with problems and it left them stranded on an island out in the Arctic Ocean. Leah prays for their safe return to their family. Karen and Adrik (Leah and Jacob’s adoptive parents) come to visit.   While they are visiting, Leah finally gets new about the safe return of Jayce and Jacob. Adrik suggests that they return to Last Chance Creek  to work for the railroad. This move comes with a tragedy. How will this affect Karen and Adrik’s family? How will Leah and Jacob’s families be impacted?

My Thoughts:

I enjoyed Whispers of Winter. Tracie Peterson has a way of keeping readers interested in her characters by challenging them throughout the book.  Leah and Helaina waiting for word of whether Jayce and Jacob survived a number of incidents.  My only disappointment was the tragedy that happened early in the story.  The loose ends were tied up, but I felt that the story should have ended sooner. The story did have lots of action and suspense.

I have always enjoyed Tracie’s books and will highly recommend them. This series was full of themes of family, love, patience, and hope.

Rating:

4/5


Please check out Tracie's latest release Beloved Hope.




Thursday, July 13, 2017

It Could Happen!

Thank you to Atria Books for giving me a copy of It Happens All The Time by Amy Hatvany. I was given this copy in exchange for an honest review. I also received no financial compensation.

Sexual assault is a major crime against women.  In It Happens All The Time by Amy Hatvany, shares a story of sexual assault and how it impacts both the victim and the abuser. I am a sexual assault survivor like Amber in this story. This story is symbolic what this experience might be like.

Synopsis:

Amber and Tyler have been friends for years. Their families met when they were teenagers. Tyler has been the best friend that Amber has ever had. He has been with her through some of the worst times in her life. Tyler also has a secret crush on Amber. So fast forward to college and Amber comes home with an engagement ring on her finger. Tyler is crushed that he has lost his opportunity with the woman of his dreams. When Amber graduates from college, and starts her plans towards her future. . She also starts spending a lot of time with Tyler. Amber argues with her fiancé that they are just friends, but Fourth of July party changes everything. Will Tyler be able to come to terms with what happened? Will Amber be able to heal?

My Thoughts:

It Happens All The Time is a great story! It is well written. I feel that Ms. Hatvany did a great job of sharing both sides of the traumatic event, and the trials both characters go through. The characters of Tyler and Amber are well developed. I loved that the backstory did not overtake the book. I have a love hate relationship with this book because of my past experience. I am a sexual assault survivor and therefore it was a little hard to read Amber’s side of the story. Ms. Hatvany did a great job of covering the topic of sexual assault. Many cases of this type of crime do no end like this story.

One point that I would like to make is that many don’t know how hard it is to share your story. The first thought is that many victims have is that none will believe you. I have had that experience over the years or the judgement from others about my story. It is important regardless of the choice made by either party to accept their truth.  Then investigate that truth. We should validate the feelings of the victim.

Rating:

5/5

You can purchase a copy of it happens all here.

  

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Let's Visit the Bookshop at Water's End

Thank you to Berkley and Tandem Literary for a copy of The Bookshop at Water’s End by Patti Callahan Henry. I was given this book in exchange for an honest review. I received no financial compensation.

Patti Callahan Henry is one of the most popular writers in my area. I had not found any new books from her in a while. So I was pleased to learn about her new title The Bookshop at Water’s End. I also recently learned that she changed publishing houses from St. Martin’s Press to Berkley.  It is an imprint of Penguin.

Synopsis:

Bonny Blankenship has been a doctor at a Charleston Hospital for years. She works in the emergency room. One night while at work she gives the wrong dose of pain medicine to a patient. He then dies. Since Bonny works a lot, she has all this vacation time to decide her future. She makes the decision to go back and visit Watersend South Carolina where her family has a summer home. She recruits her daughter Piper and best friend Lainey with children in tow. Bonny needs to think through decisions about her future, her marriage, and a new job. Lainey comes back with some trepidation because of the past. The last time she was there her mother disappeared. Her search for her mother is taking a toll on her family. When tragedy strikes will Bonny and Lainey be able to set aside the past for the future?

My Thoughts:

I have always liked Patti Callahan Henry’s work in the past, but did not love it. I loved The Bookshop at Water’s End! I had a patron where I work at the library compare her work to Elin Hilderbrand. I can say now that I agree. Berkley is a good fit for her. I look forward to seeing what is next. This book had it all from great characters to a beautiful setting. A mystery was also incorporated into the story. I would love to visit this setting.

To purchase a copy of the book visit these fine retailers.


Rating:


5/5

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Who Is Chris Brennan?

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for sending me a copy of One Perfect Lie by Lisa Scottoline.  I was given this copy in exchange for an honest review.  I received no financial compensation for this review.
Have you ever had that perfect stranger that  shows up unexpectantly, in your hometown.   What is his purpose? Why is he here?  What is it that we the readers need to know about this person?  One Perfect Lie is the first book that I have read by Lisa Scottoline.  
Synopsis:  
Chris Brennan has moved to the small town of Central Valley Pennyslivania.  He is there to take over for a teacher who left to take care of a sick parent.  Once he gets the job;  he will also be an assistant coach for Varsity baseball. He starts meeting his students especially the baseball players.  He pits Raz and Jordan, who are pitchers against one another.  For what purpose?  Which one could possibly be the terrorist? When we the readers find out that Chris’s purpose is to stop a terrorist attack.  Will he be able to make his case in time?  The other parents on the team also have their issues and secrets that could influence the case.  What are they hiding and how it will it impact the team?
My Thoughts:  
I enjoyed this book.  My only issue with the story is the high school baseball details.  Ms. Scottoline spends a lot of time delving into the game of baseball.  I feel that a few of her details were off concerning the game of baseball.  Such as Raz and Jordan probably would fight over being the ace of the staff but not over who would start each game.  By the time, most players get to high school there is a rotation that includes at least three to four pitchers.  I found my interest in the book increasing when I finally found out the purpose of Chris’s position and why he was there.   Ms. Scottoline creates interesting characters to staff this best-seller.   
I would be interested in reading more in the future.
Please visit Lisa and purchase a copy of One Perfect Lie here.
Rating:

4/5

Monday, July 3, 2017

Can You Keep a Secret?

Thank you to Harlequin for sending me a copy of Susan Mallery’s book Secrets of the Tulip Sisters. I was given this copy in exchange for an honest review. I also received no monetary compensation.

Who has sisters? I have a younger sister. My relationship with her is nothing like Kelly and Olivia. Our relationship has grown over the years.   We also had some rough patches like Kelly and Olivia.  Can the sisters of Tulpen Crossing get along or will there be a show down?

Synopsis:

Kelly has run the Tulip farm with her father Jeff for a while. They have split the business fifty/fifty. Each has their own responsibilities with the business. Do they influence each other's personal life? Kelly’s best friend Helen runs the cafĂ© and her regular customer on most mornings is Jeff. They also share a passion for music. Could they possibly share anything else? Kelly had broken up with her ex Sven several months ago will she be ready to open her heart to someone new? Then her sister Olivia comes back to town after being gone for many years? How will these affect Kelly’s routine? Can Kelly handle her mother coming back to town as well?

My Thoughts:

I enjoyed the Secrets of the Tulip Sisters! After having adapted to Susan Mallery’s style of writing it made the story most enjoyable. Her style is different and reads more like a screenplay. The main characters are the Murphy family. I was interested to see how the story would all come together, in the end. While I found the story interesting it also seemed a little busy. The author could have divided the Murphy family’s relationships into two other books. Other part of the plot was the auction to raise funds for a new roof for the craft mall. I loved how Olivia and Kelly’s relationship developed. It was interesting to see farming from a female perspective. Susan Mallery gives a real feel of community to her characters.

Rating:

4/5

Please visit Susan on Facebook or Twitter. You can purchase a copy of Secrets of theTulip Sisters here.  There is another great offer on the table from Fox Tale Bookshoppe.  They do mail orders out! Purchase the upcoming Secrets of the Tulip Sisters from FoxTale Book Shoppe and receive a FREE kate spade new york wallet. This is for the first ten people who purchase the new novel from FoxTale! Call 770-516-9989 to order.


Saturday, June 3, 2017

I am pausing in Blogging

Good morning!  I am having surgery on Monday June 5th.  I will be pausing my posts until July 1st. I will not be able to do justice to those I am promoting until this point.   Thank you for your understanding!

Jencey Gortney