What We Find by Robyn Carr

What We Find

Robyn Carr
I was so excited to find out Robyn Carr had a new series about to begin and Sullivan’s Crossing is going to be so much fun to read. Robyn is my favorite author and I devour everything she writes. I’ve never read a Robyn Carr book I didn’t love.  WHAT WE FIND is an awesome start to what I’m sure will become a wonderful series.

 

WHAT WE FIND takes place in Colorado and the way Robyn Carr describes the scenery had me feeling like I was sitting right there in the woods by the campground and enjoying a warm fire. I could almost taste the s’mores. The plot is multi layered and will have you not being able to put this wonderful story down until the very last page.
Maggie Sullivan’s life has gone to hell in a hand basket. She needs to get away. She is a neurosurgeon and her life has been non stop and hectic for years. She is being sued, her boyfriend has just dumped her, and two of her partners are under investigation. She decides to go and visit her dad, Sully at his campground. While she is there she meets Cal who is also taking a break from his life. They have many things in common but don’t realize it at first. Maggie actually believes Cal is homeless but you know what they say about judging a book by its cover right?
My heart was really breaking for Maggie and all she went through in WHAT WE FIND. The way Robyn Carr writes, it was as if I had known Maggie for years and I found myself wishing and hoping she wouldn’t get hurt anymore. Her ex Andrew was a total jerk towards her and I just wanted to reach in the pages and slap him silly. I truly got lost while reading this beautiful story and found myself in Colorado with Cal and Maggie and all the wonderful secondary characters who I know are going to become my friends as the series continues. Keep the tissues close by because as secrets are revealed, I was an emotional wreck. I’m so excited to read the next story in this series and learn more about my new friends.

Home On Apple Blossom Road

Home On Apple Blossom Road
Colin and Mia are on a treasure hunt. Grandma Justine has passed away and when her will is read Colin and Mia are shocked. They must go on this treasure hunt together and with no help from anyone else. Colin and Mia are reliving their past as the hunt for their inheritance and this is both good and bad. You see, Colin and Mia used to be a couple. A couple that everyone thought would be together forever. But life has a few bumps in it along the way and they broke up. Neither one of them has been happy since that day.

 

The treasure hunt was a lot of fun and I felt as if I were there with them when they were finding their clues. Both of them are still heartbroken and as they discover clues, they learn some things that they were wrong about. You will not be able to stop yourself from cheering for them and hoping that they find their happiness. Keep your tissues handy because HOME ON APPLE BLOSSOM ROAD gets very emotional and tugs at your heart. Even after her death, Grandma Justine isn’t finished teaching them and you will find yourself reading many many pages trying to get to the next clue with Colin and Mia.

 

I always fall in love with all of Sheila’s characters and HOME ON APPLE BLOSSOM ROAD does not disappoint. Reading a Life in Icicle Falls book is like visiting with old friends. It’s a small town and everyone is in everyone else’s business just enough to drive them all crazy. You don’t have to read the books before this one, but I bet as soon as you finish this one, you will be running to find the rest of the series. I thought I knew where the story was going and who was going to end up with who, but once again, Sheila throws in a curve ball and I had it all wrong! I can’t wait to continue with this series. As an added bonus, there are recipes at the end of the story and who doesn’t love new recipes?

Did I Mention I Love You By Estelle Maskame

 
Eden is off to Santa Monica CA to spend eight weeks with her father. Her father left her mother three years ago and she hasn’t seen him since. He has since remarried and Eden is going to spend her summer vacation with his new family including her three step brothers. Can life get any weirder for her? Eden only agrees to go to her father’s because she had some problems at school and needs to get away for awhile
Once there she discovers that her three step brothers aren’t toddlers like she thought. Tyler is one year older than she is and he is a huge jerk. She learns much later why he is the way he is but before that I totally hated him as much as Eden did. All he did was fight with his family, yelling at his mom and Eden’s dad and was totally disrespectful to her as well as them. Tyler had me so angry with some of the crap he pulled and it seemed to me like he was so lost and just didn’t care.
DID I MENTION I LOVE YOU had me on an emotional roller coaster. I was screaming at Tyler, wanting to hug Eden, and at the same time I wanted to scream at her to run as fast as she could back to her mom. Eden tries to get Tyler to get rid of his mask and stop all the pretending but he is a total jerk and yet, she still wants to help him. He puts up a front so no one will think he is weak and damaged and comes across as a self destructive and reckless idiot. Eden knows there is more to him than that and constantly tries to get through to him. So what does Tyler do? Acts like an even bigger moron to her and still, she never gives up on him.
DID I MENTION I LOVE YOU? Is book one in the DIMILY trilogy and I can’t wait to devour the second book, DID I MENTION I NEED YOU? I can’t imagine what is going to happen to Eden and Tyler and all of their friends. Be prepared to be captivated while reading this drama filled tale and not being able to put it down until late into the night. I must be a glutton for punishment because I am reading the next book as soon as I finish this review. Eden and Tyler are going to stay with you long after you finish reading.

An Amish Christmas Gift

An Amish Christmas Gift

Amy Clipston, Ruth Reid, and Kelly Irvin

AN AMISH CHRISTMAS GIFT is three novellas all written by very well known Amish genre authors.

Naomi’s Gift by Amy Clipston introduces you to Naomi who is twenty four years old and still unmarried. She has given up on finding her true love and is content staying home and taking care of her younger siblings. That is until she meets Caleb. Caleb is a widower with a seven year old daughter and he has come home to be with family and friends and he is hoping the trip will help his daughter, Susie and himself from missing his wife Barbara. He doesn’t think he is ready to move on but his meddling sister Sadie has other ideas and isn’t afraid to speak her mind. Caleb is at his wits end with her interfering in his life and finally he gives her an earful to butt out of his life.

 
An Unexpected Joy by Ruth Reid really pulls at your heart. Abigail has a huge heart and is always doing for others. When she takes a new job taking care of Micah’s Mammi she thinks she is just earning money so she can buy herself a horse, Cactus. What she doesn’t plan on doing is finding herself a husband. The characters in this story were very real and believable and I found myself muttering to Abigail to just be quiet for five minutes so Micah could talk to her. Micah’s grandmother was so cute, trying to push Abigail towards Micah but he was down right rude to her most of the time. I’ve never read anything by Ruth Reid but now I’m going to go back and find her other books! I’m so excited to find a new author who writes in this genre.

 
Rocky is the Englischer in A Christmas Visitor by Kelly Irvin . He has come to Texas from Missouri to visit his friend Frannie. Frannie is Amish and lives with her aunt and uncle as her parents sent her to live with them to get her away from Rocky. They sent her away because they know nothing good can come from a relationship with Rocky. He aunt Abigail keeps trying to interfere in Frannie’s life but Frannie isn’t having any of it. I found myself cheering loudly for Frannie and hoping she would make the right decisions. I didn’t want her to leave her family and faith behind and I didn’t want her to lose Rocky either.

 
If you are a fan of Amish fiction, second chances, and romances at Christmas you will love the three stories in AN AMISH CHRISTMAS GIFT. It will surely warm your soul and touch your heart no matter what time of year you read this wonderful Christmas themed collection of novellas.

Blu by J. Kahele

28525433Blu is book three in the Violet Chain series.

 

Omg!! What an awesome story. Once I started reading I was hooked from the very first paragraph. Blu broke my heart in the beginning of the story but then he met Pearl and his life changed dramatically. Pearl has led a horrific life and Blu is just the one to pull her back to the living.

It was great to catch up with the previous characters even though BLU is all about Blu and Pearl. Be prepared not to do anything else once you start reading! You, like me, will not be able to put this awesome read down. Janelle Kahele is going to have you holding your breath with her words as she pulls you in and never lets you go until the very last page.

My emotions were up and down, kind of like being on a roller coaster. Ms Kahele had me laughing out loud, holding my breath, and flipping the pages like a mad woman! There are some heartbreaking events that are tough to read and I just wanted to reach in and give Pearl a big hug. Be prepared to be sitting on the edge of your seat as you read BLU and not being able to think of anything else but these drama filled characters. I can not wait to read more by this awesome author who has quickly become one of my favorites!!!!!

 

ARC received from author for honest review.

Unsocial by Nicole Dykes

imageDylan is living the perfect life. He is the owner of a very successful auto body and restoration business. He can have his pick of women and he doesn’t worry about anything. That is until he receives a phone call that is going to change his life forever. His parents, who he hasn’t seen or talked to in years, have been in a tragic car accident and both of them have died. He is asked to come home and take care of his four younger siblings. He hasn’t seen them for three years. Will they want to come home with him? Should he stay in Kansas with them or bring them home to Oklahoma with him where his business is?
UNSOCIAL has Dylan dealing with a social worker named Brooke who is assigned to their case. This is Brooke’s first case and she tries to do right by this family, but she is instantly attracted to Dylan. This is not a good thing! Brooke could lose her job if things developed the way she dreams about. How is she going to be able to fight her feelings for Dylan and get the kids where they deserve to be?
The kids are sometimes hysterical and I found myself laughing out loud in many spots of reading UNSOCIAL. They also broke my heart. Their lives have been turned upside down and you can’t help but feel their pain. Alex and Jax are good friends to Brooke and Dylan but they are very protective of them and there were a few times I wanted to slap them both and tell them to mind their own business! Even with these some times annoying friends, I found myself on the edge of my seat waiting to see what was going to come next!
Even though UNSOCIAL is a big book, 620 pages, I had no problem reading it. It held my interest the entire time and sucked me right in from the very first page. Not only was I laughing while reading but I was also crying. My emotions were all over the place and I love when an author can do that. So far I have read everything that Ms. Dykes has written and I plan on keeping it that way! Her writing has matured and I can’t wait to see what she writes next!

 

ARC provided by author for an honest review.

Invisible Ellen by Shari Shattuck

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Ellen goes through life hiding and making sure she is always in the shadows. She is 24 years old and tries to never get noticed. She is an observer in life but never really a part of it. If people don’t notice Ellen, they can’t hurt her. Ellen works nights at Costco cleaning just so she has limited contact with other people. She spends her days sleeping and observing her neighbors. Ellen believes she is invisible and she likes it that way. She has been mentally and physically abused as a child and is obese which is why she thinks of herself as INVISIBLE ELLEN.
One day on the bus, she meets a blind woman named Temerity. Ellen is so confused that Temerity has actually seen her and acknowledged her by talking with Ellen that she follows Temerity off of the bus. She follows her into an alley where two thugs try to rob her. Ellen, going totally against all that she is, steps up and helps Temerity get away from the thugs. Temerity is very grateful and tells Ellen to call her so she can thank her with dinner. Ellen finds herself stepping out of her comfort zone and decides to call Temerity the next day. Her life is about to change and it will never be the same again. As she gets to know Temerity and slowly accepts her friendship, INVISIBLE ELLEN starts to become very visible.
INVISIBLE ELLEN is so many things. It is funny and sometimes very sad, but it is also a really awesome read. Shari Shattuck’s writing is very descriptive and it made me feel as if I were right there, feeling everything Ellen was going through. Shari does a great job with all the characters and allows the reader to get inside their heads and hearts. I found myself cheering for Ellen and Temerity as well as all the other characters that pull on your heart strings. INVISIBLE ELLEN will inspire hope in all its readers and maybe even get them thinking about changing their situations. I really was hoping to get to know Temerity’s brother, Justice much better but maybe that will happen in the sequel, Emerging Ellen, which I can’t wait to read. I’m excited to read more of Shari Shattuck’s books.

Together Apart by Natalie K Martin

Adam and Sarah have been together for a year and living together for the last six months. They are on vacation when Adam gets it in his head to propose to Sarah. Sarah freaks out and runs out of the restaurant. She tells him she can’t marry him. You can only imagine how their flight home is after that. Once they are back home Sarah tells Adam she can’t do it anymore. Do what? Be with him anymore! Adam is blindsided and has no idea what is going on and the worse part is, Sarah won’t talk to him.

 
TOGETHER APART finds Adam and Sarah still living in their apartment but not together as a couple. As time goes slowly by Adam learns that Sarah has some secrets. He wonders if he ever knew her at all. Adam tries to let go of Sarah and move on but he still loves her and can’t understand why she won’t tell him what is happening. Adam happens upon a box of her diaries from when she was younger and he starts to realize that what ever happened in her past it was bad enough to totally change her and her personality. She seemed so full of life before and now she is shy and not very outgoing. Before he has a chance to read them all, Sarah starts tearing their flat apart looking for the box. Will Adam ever find out the truth?

 

What could possibly be so bad that she can’t trust Adam with it?
I really enjoyed TOGETHER APART by Natalie K Martin. It is hard for me to believe it is a debut novel. She really made me feel all of Adam’s frustrations and his heartbreak. At times I just wanted to shake him and tell him to move on and at other times I just wanted to reach in to the pages and give him a big hug.

 

For being only a little less than two hundred pages, TOGETHER APART really pulls you in and has you flipping the pages quickly to see what is going to happen next. Natalie K. Martin’s description of the characters strengths as well as their flaws will have you cheering them on and hoping they can get it together. What they go through is truly heart wrenching and can only make you wonder if Sarah’s past will be overcome or tear them apart.

HIDE AWAY by Iris Johansen

HIDE AWAY is the second installment of Iris Johansen’s latest Eve Duncan series. This story picks up right where Shadow Play left off. Eve Duncan and Joe Quinn are trying to save the life of Cara Delaney from a drug cartel. The cartel will do anything to make sure that certain people do not find out Cara is alive

Eve and Cara travels to Scotland to meet up with Jane McGuire. Lord MacDuff who has been trying for years to get Jane’s help in finding Cira’s treasure agrees to keep them hidden and safe on his latest treasure hunt.  MacDuff believes that Jane is a direct descendant of Cira and is the key to finding the lost treasure.

Joe Quinn has stayed in Atlanta in hopes of throwing off the hired killers and the FBI, which works only for a short time. Once it’s clear the killers are on the way to Scotland so is Joe Quinn.

HIDE AWAY starts with a bang and doesn’t slow down. This book is full of twist and turns and double crosses. It does end with a cliffhanger and I can’t wait until the third book comes out to find out how everything will be resolved. I love Eve and Joe and without giving away a spoiler Ms. Johansen has full filled one of this reader’s greatest wishes for them.

The reviewer received a copy of Hide Away from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review.