Saturday, January 30, 2016

My Review: Thin Ice

"We do have many seasons in our lives - some happier than others.  The important thing to remember on winter days is that spring always comes . . . unless we choose to miss it by hibernating in the darkness.  Sometimes we have to make the effort to step into the sunshine."
~ Christy Reed, page 143
After losing her parents in a car accident and her sister to a house fire, Christy Reed has been mired in grief. Life is finally starting to feel normal again when an envelope arrives in the mail--addressed in her sister's handwriting. And the note inside claims she is still alive.

FBI Special Agent Lance McGregor, a former Delta Force operator, is assigned to reopen the case, but he's coming up with more questions than answers. If Ginny Reed is still alive--who is the woman buried in her grave? Where is Ginny? And is Christy a pawn in a twisted cat-and-mouse game--or the target of a sinister plot? As he digs deeper, one thing becomes clear: whoever is behind the bizarre ruse has a deadly agenda.

About the Author:
Irene Hannon is the bestselling and award-winning author of more than forty-five novels, including Buried Secrets, the Heroes of Quantico, Guardians of Justice, and Private Justice series. Her books have been honored with, among others, three coveted RITA Awards from Romance Writers of America, three HOLT Medallions, a Daphne du Maurier Award, two Reviewers' Choice Awards from RT Book Reviews magazine, and a National Readers' Choice Award. She lives in Missouri. Learn more at

My Review: 5 stars
I have to confess, I’m a huge fan of Irene Hannon’s work and I’ve been anticipating this book since reading Buried Secrets (the first in the series) right after it released. That’s given me quite a while to hope and look forward to Lance’s book. Happily, I can say that this book met and surpassed all of my expectations!

Ms. Hannon’s suspense novels are by far some of my favorites - she does such a wonderful job with them! Down to the last description, this story comes to vivid life! It’s obvious she’s done an extensive amount of research regarding FBI procedures, protocols, and the lingo. I appreciate that attention to detail very much, as it adds another depth of reality to the story. I do very much appreciate that though this book is suspense and crimes are committed, her descriptions aren’t gory. She gives the details and elaborates where it’s necessary, but she doesn’t overdo it or make me want to gag. The suspense is definitely another thing she excels at - I was on the edge of my seat more often than not and sped through the final few chapters, wanting to know how everything was going to turn out. That being said, Thin Ice is actually a little more low-key, concerning the nail biting suspense I’m used to from her books. And that’s not at all a complaint. I really enjoyed the slightly slower pace, because it allowed me to get to know the characters a little bit better. It also gave a bit of leeway for there to be a couple more serious and personal conversations, without it seeming to slow the pace of the story down.

Christy Reed is the heroine of this book and I fell in love with her character almost immediately! Life has dealt her more than her fair share of heartache, but she continues to press on and tries to keep an upbeat attitude even when she wants to give up. I loved the strength of character that I saw in her and the determination to rise above the pain. Few would blame her for surrendering, but even in her darkest moments, she tries to keep hoping. Her faith in God plays a large role in this and I loved the focused placed on trusting and relying on Him.

Lance MacGregor. Can all the ladies just sigh over him for a moment? He is so swoon-worthy! And not just in his looks. He is very much the take-charge, ex-Delta-Force-now-FBI hero that most of us, if we’re honest, absolutely adore! He’s strong and determined, while also kind and caring. Despite the somewhat stereotypical job description, he is a very realistic character. He has flaws and a few skeletons in his closet, though I do have to admit that I loved him a little bit more after I learned what they were. He’s seen a lot of horrible things in the world and has given up on God as a result. I loved watching him slowly begin to seek God again and find healing.

I also loved his relationship with Christy! Though it’s mostly professional, due to his job, the author does a wonderful job of building the tension between them without it coming across as sexual or going overboard. It does a get little steamy a couple times, but I appreciate her grace in handling it as she always does. Also, for anyone who has read her previous books, there are a few characters that make guest appearances. I love the fun in that and the way she continues to link back to her earlier stories!

Honestly, I can’t think of a single negative comment or anything I didn’t like about this book. It was superb! Irene has done another fantastic job with this story and I can’t wait to read Finn’s book!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.

Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and taking the time to read my review!
As always, links are below if you'd like to look into the book further!  Have a delightful day!


Christian Book

Barnes & Noble


Friday, January 29, 2016

My Review: With This Ring?

In Karen Witemeyer's "The Husband Maneuver," Marietta Hawkins decides to grab the reins when the ranch foreman she loves seems to be leaving forever. Regina Jennings offers "Her Dearly Unintended," where friends stranded by a rising river pretend to be newlyweds when a dangerous stranger arrives.

Mary Connealy's "Runaway Bride" finds a Texas ranger getting more than he expected when he rescues a young woman fleeing a dangerous arranged marriage. And Melissa Jagears' "Engaging the Competition" finds a young woman forced to assist the man she's often sparred with after an accident leaves him helpless. Each tale is a fun blend of history and romance that will delight readers.

About the Authors:
Karen Witemeyer is a winner of the Carol Award and has been a finalist for the RITA Award and National Readers' Choice Award. She lives with her husband and three children in Abilene, Texas.

Mary Connealy is well-known for her award-winning, bestselling historical romantic comedies. She lives on a ranch in eastern Nebraska with her husband and has four grown daughters.

Regina Jennings is the author of five acclaimed historical romances. She lives outside Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, with her husband and four children.

Melissa Jagears
, author of the Unexpected Brides series, is a homeschooling mother of three little ones on a tiny Kansas farm with a fixer-upper house. Her first novella, Love by the Letter, won the 2014 Carol Award for Best Novella.  

My Review: 4 stars
First off, you should know that I typically avoid novella collections like they have the plague. I almost always feel they are too short and the storylines lacking depth. That said, I actually really enjoyed this one! I knew I had to read it when I found out that two of my favorite historical authors (Karen Witemeyer and Mary Connealy) were a part of it, and they definitely didn’t disappoint! I appreciated the fact that each of the books are stories for secondary characters I’ve met in the authors’ full length novels (I’m actually not entirely positive about Melissa’s story, but I’m assuming). I believe that is part of the reason I enjoyed it so much. I already felt that I knew the characters a bit from the previous novels, so the shorter length didn’t bother me.

I usually chat about each novella, but I don’t really find that necessary, in this case. I very much enjoyed all of the characters and getting to see them find their “happily ever afters.” If you enjoy these authors and their books, I firmly believe you’ll love this collection! All of the authors did an excellent job of working with the shorter story and still bringing everything to life, then to a satisfying conclusion. It sometimes surprised me at how quickly I found myself finished with a story, but I didn’t feel as though any of them were missing something when I reached the final page. I am going to be honest and admit that I didn’t love Melissa Jagears’ novella, though I’m not a huge fan of her books (sorry!), so I was kind of expecting that. Despite that, I still enjoyed her story and hope fans of hers will, too!

Even if you, like me, tend to shy away from novella collections, I highly recommend giving this book a go! It was a delightful way to spend a few hours and I’m definitely looking forward to more collections from Bethany House!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my review!  I hope you enjoyed it!
If you're interested in looking into the book further, there are links below.  Have a delightful day!


Christian Book

Barnes & Noble


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

The Cautious Maiden cover reveal!

Has anyone else been looking forward to finally getting a glimpse of the cover for Dawn Crandall's, The Cautious Maiden?  I have been so super excited, personally!  The cover for Vince and Violet's book?  Yes, please!  The covers for her previous books were absolutely gorgeous (as evidenced below), so I couldn't wait to see what Whitaker House would create for this book - and they did an excellent job of continuing with the "feel" of the covers and the style.   
Here is the back cover blurb, so you can be anticipating it as much as I am!

Violet Hawthorne is beyond mortified when her brother transforms her deceased parents’ respectable country inn into a brothel to accommodate the lumberjacks in the area. When her reputation is compromised, she finds herself forced to enter into an engagement with Vance Everstone. Can she trust this man she hardly knows who has a scandalous reputation in his own right?

So, to continue torturing you, I really want to share the covers in order, so you can see them all here together (we all know this is just an excuse to make you look at some of my favorite covers, again).

First is Amaryllis' book!
(The cover is actually what first drew me to this book)

Then Meredyth's
(this cover "might" be my favorite, thus far)

Next is Estella's
(I love the periwinkle dress!)

And finally, without further ado -
Violet's book!!
(Isn't it lovely?)

Also, to celebrate, Dawn is having an awesome giveaway over on her blog (click to visit)!  It includes: copies of the first three books, an Everstone Chronicles coffee mug, and a $25 Amazon gift card!  Be sure to stop over and enter!
Thanks so much for stopping by, and I'm honored to be able to share a favorite author's new cover art with you! 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Random Giveaway!

It's time for a random giveaway!!  The weather's a bit dreary here and it's January (which is just a kind of slow month for me), so time for something fun!  I'm giving away one copy of Regina Jennings' new book, At Love's Bidding!  This is actually the second book in a series, but it stands alone quite well.  I really enjoyed the first book, A Most Inconvenient Marriage and highly recommend it, if you haven't read it!
Every giveaway needs rules, right?  I only have 2:

1) I ask that you leave a comment letting me know the title of one book you're super excited to read that's coming out this year. 

2) I also need a way to contact the winner, so please include in your comment a email address where I can reach you.  Please leave it in a safe format (example[at]example[dot]com) to protect yourself from spammers.  Unfortunately, if you don't leave an email, I won't be able to include you, so be sure you do!  

And that's it!  The giveaway will be open until midnight EST Sunday, January 17th.  The winner will be chosen by and notified on Monday.  
Okay!  I think that's all! Oh, wait!  Not quite - if you'd like to learn more about the book the description is below, along with links for various sites so you can check it out!
Now, that's it!  Thanks so much for stopping by, and be sure to leave me a comment!  Have a great weekend!

From the Back Cover:
After helping her grandfather at their Boston auction house, Miranda Wimplegate discovers she's accidentally sold a powerful family's prized portrait to an anonymous bidder. Desperate to appease the furious family, her grandfather tracks it to the Missouri Ozarks and makes an outlandish offer to buy the local auction house if they promise not to sell anything until he arrives.

Upon their arrival, however, they discover their new business doesn't deal in fine antiques, but in livestock. And its manager, ruggedly handsome Wyatt Ballentine, is frustrated to discover his fussy new bosses don't know a thing about the business he's single-handedly kept afloat. Faced with more cattle than they can count--but no mysterious painting--Miranda and Wyatt form an unlikely but charged partnership to try and salvage a bad situation getting worse.


Christian Book

Barnes & Noble

Thursday, January 14, 2016

My most anticipated books for 2016

Hello, everyone!  Goodness, it's been about a month since I've posted anything!  Sorry for kind of falling off the face of the earth.  I actually didn't intend to do a post like this, especially since I completely skipped doing my favorite reads from 2015 (too many to choose!), but a lot of my blogger friends are doing it and I'm incredibly bored, so yeah!  Here are some of the books I'm most excited for!  (Be forewarned, this is going to be a long post, because there are so many books coming out this year that I am dying to read!)
Also, I'm weird, so these are in order based on release date and then alphabetical by the author's last name.   

Reason: I love Lynette's books!  She always keeps me on the edge of my seat - and I love this cover!  It's very intriguing! 
Release date: February 2

Reason: Dani Pettrey and this cover. Enough said.
Release date: February 2
Reason:  Owen's book!!
Release Date: February 2 


Reason:  I've been a huge fan of Liz's since I read her first Love Inspired Suspense book (The Kidnapping of Kenzie Thorne, I think [read at least 3 times]), so of course, I can't wait for this one! 
Release date: March 1 


Reason:  Jen Turano - does any more really need to be said?  Her books always leave me laughing out loud and this is Lucetta's book! (If you don't know who that is, then maybe we should talk about expanding your To-Be-Read pile)
Release date: March 1

Reason: Melissa Tagg.  Returning to Maple Valley and getting to revisit the Walker family.  Also, this cover.  It just makes me smile.  
Release Date: April 5

Reason:  I really enjoyed The Lost Heiress and this book ties in with that one, also it's Brice's book!  I loved him in The Lost Heiress, so I'm super excited!  Though, I have to be honest - even if I wasn't already a fan, this cover might be reason enough.
Release Date: April 5

Reason:  Three of my favorite authors in one book?  Yes, please!
Release Date: May 3

Traces of Guilt by Dee Henderson
Unfortunately, there's no cover for this one, yet.
Reason:  Dee Henderson.  Anyone who knows me very well at all is probably aware that Dee is my all time favorite author.  I rarely play favorites, but her books are simply some of the best (in my opinion).  I just keep rereading them! On a slightly more random note, the way this book is listed on Amazon leads me to hope that it may be the first of a series (bouncing in my seat)!  I'm so excited, either way!
Release Date: May 3
Reason:  I love WWII fiction and Sarah always does an excellent job with all of her books!
Release Date: May 3

Reason: Dru's book!  This cover!  The Porters!  Becky Wade!  I am so excited!  But also sad, because this will be the last one in the series . . . I'll just have to read slowly, I suppose (because, we all know that's going to happen - not!).
Release Date: May 3

Reason:  Though her last book disappointed me a bit, I'm still a fan, so this one has to be on the list!
Release Date: June 7

Reason: Karen Witemeyer.  That's enough for me!  But to be honest, I really don't much care for this cover.  Sorry.
Release Date: June 7

Reason:  Mary Connealy!  Her books always leave me laughing!  I'm really hoping this one will follow a similar vein as the last series and also have a serious side, too.
Release Date: July 5


Reason: I loved her first book and this one continues the series!  Also, this cover is so beautiful!  I just love it!
Release Date: July 5


Reason: Once again, Lynette Eason!  And I love that the covers are following a similar style!
Release Date: August 2

The Cautious Maiden by Dawn Crandall
No cover for this one yet, but it's coming soon!
Reason:  I've loved her previous books and we get to see Vance redeemed (hopefully)!
Release Date: October (I don't have a specific date, yet)
Conspiracy of Silence by Ronie Kendig
No cover yet, but I have on good authority that it's awesome!
Reason: Ronie Kendig - need I say more?
Release Date: December (so far away!  But so many books before then to savor whilst I wait!)

Also, I don't have dates for these, but I believe (Okay, I'm hoping)  Hallee Bridgeman's  A Harmony for Steve will be releasing this year, along with Julie Lessman's next book, the title of which I actually can't remember at the moment (please comment, if you know what it is!).

So, there's my list!  Are there any I'm missing?  What are a few books that you're excited to read? 

Please note:  All cover photos and release dates were copied from  No infringement intended.