Review: Disorderly Conduct by Mary Feliz

A wildfire is threatening Professional Organizer Maggie McDonald’s home and the family is preparing for the possible upcoming evacuation. Plan A is to evacuate to the home of her friend, Tess Olmos. Unfortunately, that plan takes an unexpected turn when Tess’ husband is found dead. Worse yet, Tess is the primary suspect in his murder. Can Maggie and her family stay safe from the wildfire while uncovering who killed Patrick?

DISORDERLY CONDUCT is the fourth book in the Maggie McDonald Mystery series. It can be read on its own merits, but I suspect readers will enjoy Maggie and her family so much that they’ll want to read all three of the earlier books in the series!

Mary Feliz tackles some disturbing but all too realistic issues in DISORDERLY CONDUCT. I can’t say more as I don’t want to reveal spoilers, but I like that she doesn’t gloss over some of the darker aspects of life. The motivation for the murder is a bit convoluted but Mary Feliz does a good job at breaking it down for the reader.

I didn’t think I would like a professional organizer as the heroine as much as I do! Maggie’s tips at the beginning of each chapter are very helpful, not just for fires but for hurricanes or other natural disasters. I like that DISORDERLY CONDUCT shows us that even the most well-organized plans can go astray and that taking time to mentally refocus is just as important as having an excellent checklist to follow. The Maggie McDonald Mystery series is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Easily recommended!

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Review:To Love a Duchess by Karen Ranney

ToLoveDuchess

ebook, 384 pages                Publication: July 31st 2018 by Avon

ISBN13: 9780062841056      Series:   All for Love #1

Adam Drummond is a spy working for the Home Office posing undercover as a majordomo in Marsley House with one mission – gather proof that the late Duke of Marsley was an unforgivable traitor to his country. Usually Adam never strays from mission but the very beguiling young and still-grieving duchess has him more than concerned for her safety and health.  Not only is she one of the most beautiful woman he’s ever met but she has secrets which he feels must be exposed – did she know or was she a part of the traitorous acts perpetrated by the late Duke?

Suzanne Whitcomb, Duchess of Marsley has not been herself for some time yet she is shocked that a servant such as the new majordomo has aroused her passion. Two years of grieving since the duke had lost his life and Suzanne can’t comprehend how the touch from a mere servant has quickened her pulse.  There are other dangers in Marsley House that Drummond is discovering that must be dealt with and when his real mission is revealed, along with the truths of Suzanne’s extreme grief are exposed – will it tear them apart or enforce the love that has begun to bring them together.   

Another excellent and extremely beautifully written sensual love story written by one of my very favorite historical romance authors.   Characterizations of the principals and secondary characters are always spot on and motivations are clearly shown.  The quick pace of the story make the book feel shorter than the 384 pages.  So happy when I can begin a series with book one and I’ll be looking forward to the next book by this extremely talented author.

Marilyn Rondeau

Review: The Warrior of Clan Kincaid by Lily Blackwood

warriorClanKincaid

Publication: July 31st 2018 by St. Martin’s Paperbacks

ISBN13: 9781250084842                 Series: Highland Warrior #3

Derryth MacClaren is fleeing her sister’s castle home to avoid capture by the vicious nobleman known as the Wolf.   When a surprise attack leaves Derryth vulnerable, she ends up in the hands of Cull, an enemy warrior who claims her. Cull’s gentle ways and touch seduce her heart—and body—completely…and when she discovers the tattoo on his arm that proves him to be the legendary, long-believed dead son of the murdered Laird of Kincaid, Derryth knows she must find a way to alter his fate—and her own.

Cull has no memory of his family or past—all he knows is the life of a slave then trained as a warrior, to fight on behalf of the Scottish king. If Cull can help the king’s law officer, the Wolf of Badenoch, defeat the Highlanders, Cull will earn a name and land plus keep possession of Derryth. But now that she has told him who he really is — Cullen Braewick, the youngest son of the slain laird—he is torn. If Cull exacts revenge against the Wolf, who executed his father, he stands to lose the precious lass who he has come to love. What is he willing to sacrifice for Derryth to keep her safe…and in his arms?

A very sensual love story between the two protagonists as they come to trust another and recognize the feelings each inspires in each other. The betrayals of the Wolf and his treacherous games and son are part of what made this story so fast paced and full of suspense.  It was fun to see Derryth’s attempts to aggravate Cull into sending her back to the other hostages and his reactions to her tricks.   Great characterizations of all including the villains who were really nasty!  The romance was terrific and loved the entire story !

Marilyn Rondeau 

Review: Midnight Proposal by Gloria Gay

MidnightPProposal

Kindle Edition, 218 pages                                Published June 12th 2018

ASIN B07DQ7VMKL                                     Rating: 4*

I must say this was quite a fresh outlook on a simple Regency historical romance.  The heroine was in extreme dire straits and her life was going to be hell if she hadn’t had the support of a loving aunt who gave this young woman the strength to save herself.   All she had to do was convince the Earl of Westal to agree to her outrageous proposal.    Without giving too much away in spoilers of our heroine, Veronica Glendalion, you can only surmise that her future looked extremely bleak and short if she couldn’t convince the Earl to help her.

In a normal world Veronica might have been turned away immediately as a crazy person for approaching an almost complete stranger – the Earl of Westal,  a member of the nobility – but she had met him as a child and hoped that he would remember him saving her from a bunch of bullies.  However, what helped her case was the fact that the Earl’s mother had been trying for years to marry him to another whom he had absolutely no interest in.   Other than the fact that Westal was quite taken with Veronica’s striking blue eyes, he definitely wanted to help this lady in distress!

Frankly, I truly LOVED this story, the pacing, the suspense, the characterizations, but due to some portions of the book being repeated and poor editing I can’t give this a a higher rating.   The story itself is a 5* but overall I have to give it a 4*… 

Marilyn Rondeau

 

Review: Strength Enduring

Strength Enduring

 

Review: Strength Enduring

Carrie Ann Ryan

I thoroughly enjoyed this return to author Carrie Ann Ryan’s Talon Pack. The characters, the action, the secret that almost destroys a family, and add to that a mated pair that one mate wants to deny – for her safety, of course, it all rolls into an amazing read.

Kam Brentwood is an enforcer, he knows how to defeat the enemy, he’s tough, he’s fierce, but when it comes to one little human woman, he turns into an idiot with his foot in his mouth constantly. Dhanielle Coburn is the human who is hired to teach the children of the pack, after being fired from her human school because of her friendship with the pack members, she begins to feel closer to the pack members. Too bad Kam is such an idiot.

They are just starting to get some communication going when they are forced into a “mating” to prove that she hadn’t been kidnapped and held by the pack members. The action is due in part to a secret that happened at her birth, one she doesn’t know anything about and the shenanigans of the packs enemy, Blade, who is still determined to rule all packs. Fate has a way of doing what she wants and watching the couple struggle with the truth that they are meant to be together. It is a really good look at communication, right and wrong ways to work things out and gaining trust through secrets and setbacks on an emotional level.

I enjoy this series and can’t wait to see is next in this author’s wicked mind.

Review: Somebody’s Daughter by David Bell

Somebody's Daughter

Hardcover, 432 pages                      Publication: July 10th 2018 by Berkley Books

ISBN13: 9780399584466                 Rating 4-1/2*

Michael Frazier and his wife Angela were happily married and trying everything to get pregnant which would make their life complete.  The strains of trying for this one important element for complete happiness was only made all the more tenuous when Michael’s ex-wife Erica showed up on his doorstep pleading for his help… She then dropped a bombshell that her nine-year old daughter Felicity was missing – and the bigger shocker he – Michael was her father!  

Naturally, even though Michael was finding his new fatherhood was hard to believe there was a niggling fact that it might also be true.  Against his wife’s objections, Michael had no choice but to try and follow the trail of crumbs that Erica’s story left behind.  Could it be true and could the bond he had with his soul-mate Angela withhold the stretch to the limit suspense as more and more facts came to life?

This truly was an amazing suspense thriller with a plethora of characters all having this or that in common and fingers pointing all over the place as to who had kidnapped the child.   The only reason this didn’t earn a coveted FIVE star review is that I felt that the end was a bit rushed and there were threads that seemed hastily brushed away or forgotten.   However, don’t let this dissuade you from picking this up as SOMEBODY’S DAUGHTER was a truly great and rapidly paced read!

Marilyn Rondeau

Review: The Fashion Designer by Nancy Moser

FashionDesigner#2

Paperback, 320 pages                          Published July 1st 2018 by Shiloh Run Press

ISBN13: 9781683226017                      Series:  The Pattern Artist #2

Rating 5*

In this second book of the Pattern Artist series, author Nancy Moser has let a little time pass for Annie Wood, a housemaid-turned-pattern designer who is now making a another leap of faith at the chance of designing her own clothing line with the help of a wealthy New York couple who offered to finance her endeavor.   Included in the project are Annie’s new husband, Sean Culver, her best friend at Butterwick, Maude Nascato, and a mother figure, Edna Holmquist (all introduced before in the PATTERN ARTIST)

This now is an even bigger leap of faith when Annie and her colleagues give up their careers, risking all to follow a shared passion of making ready to wear clothes for the working woman which would be both fashionable and functional for the modern, busy woman in 1912.  

While the main characters Annie, her husband and good friends, struggle with planning the designs for a 12 dress fashion show with their financier, they discover that the dream they had for designs was not that of their backers and as a result their backers pulled out.  It was tough going with many ups and downs and their many prayers to the Almighty to “show them the way”.   Each step forward sometimes left them back at the starting plate, but through their unsurmountable faith and incredible hard work they strove forward.  

The story really tested the mettle of so many of the engaging characters found in this story and the meeting between Annie and the famous Lane Bryant was truly a treat along with all the other historical glimpses of that time.   This is truly a most engaging and lovely read that leaves the reader with that ahhhhh…… feeling of true contentment.

Marilyn Rondeau