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Showing posts from 2017

The Wedding Shop by Rachel Hauck

When childhood best friends, Tammy and Haley were ten years old they vowed to reopen the wedding shop in their hometown of Heart's Bend, Tennessee. Those plans are put on hold when Haley joins the Airforce and Tammy passes away from cancer. 
    The second proprietor of the shop was Cora Scott in the 1930's who took over for her Aunt Jane who originally opened the store. The wedding shop tells the story of both women whose lives are intertwined together in ways Haley could never have guessed. 
     I've become quite the fan of Rachel Hauck's books over the past several years. Her stories are charming and sweet. They are filled with present and past struggles that run on parallel courses. I've found once I get into the stories I don't want to put them down. If you're looking for something to read I recommend this or one of Hauck's other books like The Wedding Dress.

The Hideway by Lauren K. Denton

"The Hideaway" by Lauren K. Denton was a great read. I thoroughly enjoyed it, probably more so from having just spent some time on Alabama's Gulf Coast.

   When Sara's darling little grandmother, Mags passes away Sara finds herself returning home to Sweet Bay, Alabama. She leaves behind her thriving business and best friend, Allyn, in New Orleans. Back at The Hideaway, the bed and breakfast where she grew up, Sara has to confront her past and her own feelings for Mags who raised her. Life on the Gulf Coast lulls Sara into a more relaxed state and she begins to let down her guard. Will that allow her to open up to the idea of love and a future, different from the one she had imagined for herself?

   I didn't want to put this book down. I found myself transported to the water's edge. The characters are unique and colorful, each of them adding a different layer to the story. The book changes perspectives between Mags and Sara which makes it a full story of both…

The Royal We by Heather Cocks & Jessica Morgan

Hi, Sweetums! I should warn you that I'm about to gush!

I just finished The Royal We by Heather Cocks & Jessica Morgan. To say it was unputdownable is an understatement.

Cornell college student Bex Porter decides to do an exchange program at Oxford one semester and when she arrives on campus who should open the door to her new life but Steve Prince Nick. Bex didn't come to Oxford in hopes of finding love, she came for the adventure and the art. What she finds instead is something so much more.

Let me start by saying that I love princess books. From The Princess Diaries to The Runaway Princess to the Royal Wedding Series, I can't get enough.

The Royal We did not disappoint with its lively and well developed characters. It's British backdrop and truthful narrator gave it the feel of having a chat with your bestie over a cup of tea. I stayed up late and got up early so that I could keep reading. I didn't want this book to end. But it didn't disappoint, even until…

Vision in White (Bride Quartet, Book 1) by Nora Roberts

I had not read anything by Nora Roberts, but when I read my planned book for my recent vacation in about 24-hours, I found Vision in White (Bride Quartet, Book 1) on the bookshelf of our vacation rental. I read this in a day as well. It was a fun read and I'm hoping to get to the next books in the series at some point. 

Mackenzie "Mac" Elliott and her three best friends have been playing "Wedding Day" since they were children. The game leads to their future partnership in a wedding planning business. Mac gets to create a life she loves behind the lens of her camera. When a regularly scheduled consultation puts her in Carter McGuire's path her whole life plan is changed. 

Mac has never been a believer in love, something about watching her parents go through spouses like they are disposable has led her to be wary of anything that could be love. Will Carter be able to change her mind?

This book was an enjoyable and easy read. I found it hard to put down and quite…

Lizzy & Jane by Katherine Reay

I'm a big fan of Katherine Reay's work. Her stories are entertaining and deep. I took this a book to read on the beach, but I couldn't put it down and spent time reading instead of beaching. Lizzy and Jane are sisters. Estranged by the past and living on different coasts when Jane is diagnosed with cancer. Lizzy returns home for a visit and they struggle to reconnect in ways that will help heal. 

You can trust Reay to take you on an emotional journey with her books and Lizzy and Jane did not disappoint. The characters are real with their own passions, struggles and flaws. Their family is fractured, but the hope they have for rebuilding is alive. 

I loved this book and I think you will too. My only complaint was that it eventually ended.

The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck

"The Wedding Dress" by Rachel Hauck was a fun, fantastical read. When bridal store owner, Charlotte buys a vintage trunk at an auction she doesn't know that the contents will change everything in her life from her relationship with her fiancé, her best friendship, even everything she knows about her family. How she reacts will change the future, but none of that can alter the past. 

I think what I like most about Hauck's writing (I've read a few of her other books, that I haven't reviewed) is that they have an element of magical realism which makes them somehow more believable. "The Wedding Dress" does not fail in this area and, in fact, make the book work in many ways.

Overall this book was a fun read. It didn't keep me on the edge of my seat, but there was enough tension to keep me reading. This is Christian fiction so there are elements of faith and inspiration which, of course, don't bother me, but might bother some readers. The characters…

Hello Sunshine: a novel by Laura Dave

"Hello Sunshine: a novel" by Laura Dave was an excellent read, especially right on time for summer. The only way that this book would have been more fabulous would have been for me to be reading it on a beach. 

Sunshine McKenzie never started out planning to lose herself to the internet starlet she became, but that's just what happened. Her perfectly curated life comes crashing down after a series of tweets reveals some tantalizing gossip about who, exactly, Sunny has become. When your life is torn down by a wrecking ball, you have to choose which pieces to save, will Sunny manage to save the right ones?

"Hello Sunshine: a novel" was a fun, provocative read. I truly enjoyed it from the start and didn't want to put it down. I imagine, given the right amount of time, I could have read the whole book in one sitting. So much of the story was relatable, and I identified with the concepts that Sunny was trying to understand, if not fully with Sunny herself. I don&#…

True to You by Becky Wade

I've been a fan of Becky Wade's book for a while now and her newest release, True To You, did not disappoint. This story, the first in Ms. Wade's new Bradford Sisters series, follows Nora Bradford the owner and caretaker of a historical village outside of Seattle, Washington. Neither Nora or her two sisters have yet found their lifelong love and prospects seem few and far away. Then Nora volunteers with her younger sister and meets John, a decorated Navy Seal and something of a celebrity. Her crush grows until she finds out he has a girlfriend and she is devastated. There's only one problem, they will be seeing each other all the time. 

This book was filled with delightful and heart wrenching twists and turns that kept me on edge wanting to know what was going to happen next. The feelings and emotions expressed from all of the characters, even minor ones, were believable and true. The story was cohesive and interesting. I can't wait to read the next two books in thi…

Mary Poser by Angel A.

I just finished the book Mary Poser: Butterflies and White Lies as Bollywood Comes to Nashville. In this book, dutiful pastor's daughter Mary meets Bollywood producer, Simha Das at the Nashville Film Festival and the many different events that follow send Mary on a roller coaster of emotions. When her ex finds out about Simha he appears back in Mary's life wanting to make amends. Her critical mother has to have opinions about everything in her family's life. Her brother, sister and father are all restless with their lives that have been lived in the same city. Her best friend from childhood is devious and manipulative. Plus, there are lots of other characters with their own set of problems.

What will the result be? Will Mary completely change or will she stay in the life that she has always known? 

I would tell you to read it to find out, but don't, seriously don't. 

This was by far the worst book I have read in a while. The events in Mary's life are described in …

Look's Who's Back

Me. It's me. I'm the one who's back

How are you guys? Sorry I've been away for a while. My work life took a crazy turn a couple of years ago and it affected everything in my life. I wanted so badly to believe the myths of work-life-balance and that I could have it altogether, but alas, they are not true for me.

Things have gone back to "normal" at work and now I have the energy to blog. So what should we talk about? 

I am still sewing, though not as much as I once was. My newest creative outlet is designing things for my Cricut*.  I made some gifts for Galentine's Day and Palentine's Day (yes, I made up the last one) and I will have to create a post where I show them to you. 

I've changed the format of this blog, let me know your feedback. I didn't do too much to tweek it yet, but I'll get there. 

I am still reading and have read a few books already this year, so I will have to post about those in the upcoming days. I also need to blog about my…

Rugosa: A Survival Story from Omaha to London by Creek Stewart

Creek Stewart of "Fat Guys in the Woods" fame released his first novel, Rugosa: A Survival Story from Omaha to London, on February 14. I just finished it and I was very impressed. 

Omaha is a boy scout and since the loss of his father the entire world has been turned upside down. Now he finds that one of the people nearest to him in life, London, is in trouble and he has to risk everything to save her.

Will be able to make it to her in time? Will she even be alive when he gets there? What kind of danger will he face on the way there? 

Find out the answers by reading the book. (What'd you think I was going to say?)

I really did enjoy this book. It was a gripping story and only took me three sittings to get it finished. A lot of the plot hits closer to home than I would like. An added bonus was some of the survival skills that I picked up along the way. 

I could really relate to Omaha as a character. He is a quiet person that prefers the outdoors to being around people. While b…

Life and Other Near Death Experiences by Camille Pagan

Libby's entire life was turned on its head in a matter of hours one cold Chicago day. How she reacts will redefine how she lives and will change the rest of her life.

I sincerely loved this book. I was hooked from the first paragraph. Despite what could be considered an outrageous plot, I found it believable and relatable. I definitely recommend it though, there are some things that could be considered triggers for some readers so avoid it if you are sensitive about cancer, losing a parent or divorce. 

Pagán's writing was refreshing and real. I think what I loved most was the epilogue that actually wrapped up the story, without putting it in a box with a bow on it.

Since I didn't receive a free copy of this book I am linking to it here for you to purchase on Amazon. This is an affiliate link, which means that I will get a small part of the profits: Life and Other Near Death Experiences by Camille Pagan.

Eve by WM. Paul Young

Eve by WM. Paul Young was an interesting and thought provoking read. This book was unlike any other Christian fiction I have ever read. So much of this book is set in a world that does not exist and which I would fall very short in trying to describe. It is ethereal and mind boggling at the same time. The story moves along well, though it is a long read. I found it enjoyable and restful. 

There was a point where I wanted to throw the book across the room and likely would have, if I weren't reading it on my Kindle that I love so dearly. Alas, I continued to read and realized that the plot twist worked itself out and I was very glad I had not stopped reading. I say that to make sure that when you get to that point you will continue reading. I would definitely recommend this book, but I would add a warning to go into it with an open mind and not let yourself get caught up in overthinking it.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I really did like the boo…

The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald

Amy has died and no one knew that she was coming to visit. Sara has to find a way to enjoy her vacation despite the loss of her friend. She finds a charming and welcoming community that make it possible for her to picture herself in Broken Wheel, but will it work out.

This book is well written and believable. I found myself wanting to move to Broken Wheel, despite the fact that the town was struggling to even survive. Sara was likable and the kind of person that you want to be. The addition of book recommendations and quotes made it so much more interesting.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This is how I felt.