Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Recent TBR Additions

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
Each week features a book related topic that offers the opportunity to spotlight your Top Ten.

Topic:
Ten Books You Recently Added To Your To-Be-Read List

To make this easier on me, I'm going to just list the books I've added to GoodReads recently. Trying to remember which books I've added to my actual shelf, might drive me a little nuts!

The Painter's Daughter by Julie Klassen
Until the Dawn by Elizabeth Camden
At Love's Bidding by Regina Jennings
On this Foundation by Lynn Austin
Maggie Bright by Tracy Groot
The Bronte Plot by Katherine Reay
Lightening by Boonie S. Calhoun

With all of the latest news of up and coming releases, it's been a busy time adding to my TBR list. So many lovelies will be coming out! Then the ones that have already come out and I'm just hearing about.

What have you recently added to your TBR?

Monday, March 30, 2015

Review: Where Trust Lies by Janette Oke & Laurel Oke Logan

Title: Where Trust Lies
Author: Janette Oke & Laurel Oke Logan
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 336
ISBN: 978-0-7642-1318-2
Publication Date: February 3rd, 2015

Synopsis:
She loves her friends and students in the West, but family obligations have called her home. Where does she truly belong?
After a year of teaching in the Canadian West, Beth Thatcher returns home to her family. She barely has time to settle in before her mother announces plans for a family holiday--a luxurious steamship tour along the eastern coast of Canada and the United States. Hoping to reconnect with her mother and her sisters, Beth agrees to join them, but she quickly realizes that things have changed since she went away, and renewing their close bond is going to be more challenging than she expected.

There's one special thing to look forward to--letters and telephone calls from Jarrick, the Mountie who has stolen her heart. The distance between them is almost too much to bear. But can she give her heart to Jarrick when it will mean saying good-bye to her family once again--and possibly forever? And will she still want to live in the western wilds after the steamship tour opens up a world of people and places she never imagined?

Then comes a great test of Beth's faith. Someone in her family has trusted the wrong person, and suddenly everything Beth knows and loves is toppled. Torn between her family and her dreams, will Beth finally discover where her heart truly belongs?

A companion story to Hallmark Channel's When Calls the Heart TV series!
Review:
I've always have been a fan of the Canadian West series. I was thrilled when last year, there was a spinoff. Then to make the enjoyment all the best, Hallmark Channel came out with the TV show, When Calls the Heart, based off of this new series. (The first season was fantastic by the way, and I can't wait for season 2!)

Where Trust Lies picks up right where, Where Courage Calls ends.We follow Beth as she travels back home for the summer to await word on if she is wanted back in Coal Valley for the next school year. She also has to deal with the separation from Jack as he has to stay at his post. It's during this separation, Beth is given a lot to think over.

Beth also realizes, her time in Coal Valley has changed her. She is stronger, and a bit more independent now, then what she was. Her transition for the summer back to her old life is a little harder, especially when she doesn't even get to spend much time home. Her family has planned a long cruise trip without telling her and she is thrust off into another new area.

I liked the beginning of Where Trust Lies and the end. The story flowed well, as was interesting in these areas. Sadly though, with the cast of characters out to see for most of it, the story dragged. From Beth's perspective, she wasn't having a wonderful time, just trying to make it through the journey, and that is how I felt right along with her. The story didn't have much of a romantic background as what I was hoping, but with Beth and Jack separated as they were and the form of communication used, that is understandable. What was really focused on was Beth's sister, Julie. She has always been the free spirit of the family, and this book focused on that and her desire to rebel against the life she has known and the rules.

Out of the two books out in this series so far, I didn't like it as much as the first book, but I am looking forward to what is to come for Beth and to see where her story goes.

3 out of 5

About the Author:
Bestselling author Janette Oke (pronounced "oak") is celebrated across the world for her significant contribution to the Christian book industry. She is credited with launching the modern era of inspirational fiction with the publication of her first novel, Love Comes Softly, in 1979. Today, her novels have sold more than 30 million copies, and she is the recipient of the ECPA President's Award, the CBA Life Impact Award, the Gold Medallion, and the Christy Award. Janette and her husband, Edward, live in Alberta, Canada.



Laurel Oke Logan, daughter of Edward and Janette Oke, is the author of Janette Oke: A Heart for the Prairie, as well as the novel Dana's Valley, which she co-wrote with her mom. Laurel and her husband have six children and two sons-in-law and live near Indianapolis, Indiana.







Thank you to Bethany House, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (82)

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.
Each week offers the opportunity to spotlight the books you have gotten this past week. They can be the books you have received for review, bought, borrowed, or won.

Review:
 Every Bride Needs A Groom by Janice Thompson (Revell Reads)
On Shifting Sand by Allison Pittman (Tyndale Blog Network)

It's been a good and quiet week for books, which has been nice. I can't wait to read these!

How was your book week? Get anything you have been looking forward to?

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Waiting On Wednesday: Luther and Katharina

Waiting On Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.
Each week offers the opportunity to spotlight an up-and-coming release that you are most excited about.

Waiting On:
Title: Luther and Katharina: A Novel on Love and Rebellion
Author: Jody Hedlund
Publisher: Waterbrook Press
Publication Date: October 6th, 2015

Synopsis:
From GoodReads
Katharina von Bora has seen nothing but the inside of cloister walls since she was five. In a daring escape, Katharina finds refuge with Martin Luther and seeks his help to pair her with the noble, wealthy husband she desires.

As class tensions and religious conflicts escalate toward the brink of war, Martin Luther believes that each day could be his last and determines he will never take a wife.

As the horrors of the bloody Peasant War break out around them, the proud Katharina and headstrong Martin Luther fight their own battle for true love, in one of the greatest love stories of history.
Why I'm Waiting:
Jody Hedlund is one of my favorite authors. When ever there is a book coming out by her, it is a must read! And now to see she is writing a story of Martin Luther and Katharina, one of the greatest love stories in history!!! Heck yes, I want to read this!


What are you waiting on this week?

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Revisiting Childhood

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
Each week features a book related topic that offers the opportunity to spotlight your Top Ten.

Topic:
Top Ten Books From My Childhood (Or teen years) That I Would Love To Revisit

The books I read as an older kid/teen were generally classics. My grandpa introduced them to me when I was younger, and I loved them! I didn't really read the books most kids did. I was really stuck in historical fiction and loved it! I haven't read these books in a long while, but would love to re-read them sometime.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Love Comes Softly by Janette Oke
Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
 Mara: Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis McGraw
The Princess by Lori Wick
Treasures of the North by Tracie Peterson
The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
The Rose Legacy by Kristen Heitzmann

What books would you like to go back and revisit?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Things are shifting a little bit

Hey everyone!

I wanted to let y'all know that things have been changing personally for me lately, for the good! And I'm very excited to what is going on. With these new changes, my schedule is shifting a bit. If you haven't noticed, I haven't been posting as much in these last couple of weeks. I'm still reading and writing (with many lovelies to be featured soon, so keep an eye out!), I just won't be able to post as frequently as I have in the past. Instead of daily or 6 out of 7 days of posting, it may drop a little bit. Maybe to 4 times a week. 

I just wanted to let you know of this new change. I'm still here with many great books to review, just until things get into a new routine, it may not be as frequent.


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Stacking the Shelves (81)

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews.
Each week offers the opportunity to spotlight the books you have gotten this past week, whether they are the books you received for review, bought, borrowed, or won.

I've missed a couple of weeks with the craziness of life getting in the way, so I'm playing catch up.

Review:
 A Sparrow in Terezin by Kristy Cambron (Litfuse Publicity)
The Wood's Edge by Lori Benton (Blogging for Books)

Bought:


Oh, my goodness! I've been waiting for all of these for a while! I'm so excited to read each of these!!

How was your book week?

Friday, March 20, 2015

Review: After a Fashion by Jen Turano

Title: After a Fashion
Author: Jen Turano
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 352
ISBN: 978-0-7642-1275-8
Publication Date: March 3rd, 2015

Synopsis:
Miss Harriet Peabody dreams of the day she can open up a shop selling refashioned gowns to independent working women like herself. Unfortunately, when an errand for her millinery shop job goes sadly awry due to a difficult customer, she finds herself out of an income.

Mr. Oliver Addleshaw is on the verge of his biggest business deal yet when he learns his potential partner prefers to deal with men who are settled down and wed. When Oliver witnesses his ex not-quite-fiance cause the hapless Harriet to lose her job, he tries to make it up to her by enlisting her help in making a good impression on his business partner.

Harriet quickly finds her love of fashion can't make her fashionable. She'll never truly fit into Oliver's world, but just as she's ready to call off the fake relationship, fancy dinners, and elegant balls, a threat from her past forces both Oliver and Harriet to discover that love can come in the most surprising packages.
Review:
Jen Turano has fast become a favorite and a go to author. Her ability at writing, not only a wonderful piece of historical fiction, but her ability to fill it with a perfect amount of wit and comedy, has made her books a must read.

I was not disappointed in the slightest reading After a Fashion, in all honesty, I think it is her best book yet! I loved reading about Harriet and her friends, Millie and Lucetta. They are the best of friends, coming from different background and working in different areas as well. They mesh and their conversations are spot on. They are a great trio.

Oliver Addleshaw was an interesting character. He's only known one way to live, but that changes rather quickly when Harriet is thrown into his life at a most awkward and needed time. Watching Oliver morph was interesting and fun, and showed that change doesn't happen overnight.

The secondary characters added an extra depth and fun. The balance between everyone on this stage is perfect. You are able to see and experience everything they do from their surroundings, to food, to clothes and shoes. Nothing is really left out, but you're not overwhelmed. Everything is brought together to open up this world that Harriet lives in.

I can't wait to see where the rest of this series goes and learn more about these characters.

Too Read!
5 out of 5

About the Author:
Jen Turano, author of A Change of Fortune, A Most Peculiar Circumstance, and A Talent for Trouble, is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in clothing and textiles. She is a member of ACFW and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado.
Visit her website at www.jenturano.com.








Thank you to the Author and to Bethany House, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Review: Mist of Midnight by Sandra Byrd

Title: Mist of Midnight
Author: Sandra Byrd
Publisher: Howard
Pages: 374
ISBN: 978-1-4767-1786-9
Publication Date: March 10th, 2015

Synopsis:
Rebecca Ravenshaw, daughter of missionaries, spent most of her life in India. Following the death of her family in the Indian Mutiny, Rebecca returns to claim her family estate in Hampshire, England. Upon her return, people are surprised to see her...and highly suspicious. Less than a year earlier, an imposter had arrived with an Indian servant and assumed not only Rebecca's name, but her home and incomes.

That pretender died within months of her arrival; the servant fled to London as the young woman was hastily buried at midnight. The locals believe that perhaps she, Rebecca, is the real imposter. Her home and her father's investments reverted to a distant relative, the darkly charming Captain Luke Whitfield, who quickly took over. Against her best intentions, Rebecca begins to fall in love with Luke, but she is forced to question his motives-does he love her or does he just want Headbourne House? If Luke is simply after the property, as everyone suspects, will she suffer a similar fate as the first "Rebecca"?

A captivating Gothic love story set against a backdrop of intriguing and danger, Mists of Midnight will leave you breathless.
Review:
I've been anxiously awaiting Mist of Midnight ever since I head it was coming out. Ever since I was a teenager, I was a fan of Jane Eyre and the Gothic, romantic, writing style. There is just something about the mystery and darkness of it all that draws me in.

From the first page of this story, I was hooked. Questions kept popping up and it was hard to stop flipping through the story, I wanted answers! The story didn't give them up right away, oh, no! Sandra Byrd has a fantastic way of writing that kept you guessing and pulling you deeper into the story. I will admit, there are some mystery books that it drags out too long and I'm ready just for answers, so I will skip ahead. Mist's is not that type of story. Each bit of information and questions open a look into the characters a little more, revealing more information layer by layer.

This book had two different backdrops and switching between the English moors and the rich and exotic India, and it went back and forth between these two areas flawlessly, with Rebecca as an anchor to both sides.

Then their is the richness of the characters. Throughout reading this book, I kept questioning myself on almost every single one of them. It was wonderful not knowing who was up to what, for what reason. The questions, the intrigue, it was a thrilling read!

I was sad to have this story end, but I'm so glad that this is just the start of a series. Sandra Byrd is a new to me author and I can't wait to read her other stories.

If you like Jane Eyre or the new Price of Privilege series, this is a book for you!

Too Read!
5 out of 5

About the Author:
After earning her first rejection at the age of thirteen, bestselling author Sandra Byrd has now published more than forty books. Her adult fiction debut, Let Them Eat Cake, was a Christy Award finalist, as was her first historical novel, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn. To Die For was also named by Library Journal as a Best Books Pick for 2011 and The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr, was named a Library Journal Best Books Pick for 2012. Roses Have Thorns: A Novel of Elizabeth I published in April, 2013.

Sandra has also published dozens of books for tweens and teens including the Secret Sisters Series, London Confidential Series and a devotional for tweens.

A former textbook acquisitions editor, Sandra has published many nonfiction articles and books. She is passionate about helping new writers develop their talent and their work toward traditional or self publication. As such, she has mentored and coached hundreds of new writers and continues to coach dozens to success each year.

Please visit www.sandrabyrd.com to learn more, or to invite Sandra to your bookclub via Skype.




Thank you to Howard Books, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.


Waiting On Wednesday: In Good Company

Waiting On Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine.
Each week offers the opportunity to spotlight an up-and-coming release that you are most excited about.

Waiting On:
Title: In Good Company
Author: Jen Turano
Publisher: Bethany House
Publication Date: July 17th, 2015

Synopsis:
From GoodReads
After spending her childhood in an orphanage, Millie Longfellow is determined to become the best nanny the East Coast has ever seen. Unfortunately, her playfulness and enthusiasm tend to bring about situations that have employers looking askance at her methods. After her most recent dismissal, Millie is forced to return yet again to an employment agency.

Everett Mulberry has suddenly and quite unexpectedly found himself responsible for three children he’s never met. Attempting fatherhood while also pacifying the less-than-thrilled socialite he intends to marry is made even more complicated when the children scare off every nanny he hires. About to depart for Newport, Rhode Island, for the summer, he’s desperate for competent childcare.

At wit’s end with both Millie and Everett, the employment agency gives them one last chance–with each other. Everett is wary of Millie’s penchant for disaster, and she’s not entirely keen on another snobby, grumpy employer, but they’re both out of options. As Millie falls in love with her mischievous charges and tries to stay one step ahead of them, Everett is more focused on achieving the coveted status of society’s upper echelons. As he investigates the suspicious circumstances surrounding the children’s parents’ death, will it take the loss of those he loves to learn whose company he truly wants for the rest of his life?
Why I'm Waiting:
I'm currently reading After a Fashion and I can already tell you, I can't wait for this next book in this series! Jen Turano has a wonderful talent for for wit and comedy. Her books always bring a smile and several laughs. Can't wait to continue reading on!

What are you waiting on?