Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Barker

23 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

Otherwise Engaged by Joanna Barker

Otherwise Engaged

on October 12t, 2020
Pages: 266
Format: Paperback
five-stars
She’s never been afraid of breaking the rules—until she risks breaking her heart

Constantly stifled by the rules of Society, spirited Rebecca Rowley enjoys finding ways to quietly—or not so quietly—rebel. But riding bareback and avoiding nosy neighbors are nothing compared to the thrilling secret she is keeping from her family.


When Rebecca’s quick thinking saves the life of a young girl, she unwittingly attracts the attention of the child’s dashing brother, Lieutenant Nicholas Avery. As that attention turns flirtatious, Rebecca is forced to tell him the truth: she is secretly engaged—to the one man her family would never approve of. Fortunately, Lieutenant Avery is a navy man with no wish to marry, or so they both assume as they enter into a friendship. Rebecca hopes to change her family’s mind about her betrothed, but the more she comes to know the handsome lieutenant, the more she wonders if she promised her hand too hastily.

After all her carefully laid plans are shattered during a family crisis, Rebecca must force her heart to decide. Should she stay true to the promise she made or fight for the future she’s only just begun to imagine?

Review

How have I never read a book by Joanna Barker? Oh my!!! One of the best Regencies I’ve read. Lieutenant Avery is the perfect character in every way. Rebecca is feisty and wild for her tie, even learning to shoot his pistol. Each person in this novel has a wonderfully unique personality. The plot progressed a tad slowly at first with all of the horse, bareback, hedge jumping talk. But, wow. Prepare to be swept away.

I just put all of her books on my wish list. Pick this one up for sure!

About the Author

Joanna Barker was born and raised in northern California. She discovered her love for historical fiction after visiting England as an eleven-year-old, and subsequently read every Jane Austen book she could get her hands on. After graduating with a degree in English, she worked as an acquisitions editor before devoting herself full-time to writing. She enjoys music, chocolate, and reading everything from romance to science fiction. She lives near the mountains and is just a little crazy about her husband and two wild-but-loveable boys.

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A Captain for Caroline Gray by Julie Wright

20 Nov, 2020 by in historical fiction, proper romance Leave a comment

A Captain for Caroline Gray by Julie Wrighton March 2, 2021
Pages: 336
Format: ARC
four-half-stars
Buy the BookGoodreads
Regency London

Caroline Gray’s third season in London society ends as badly as her first two—no marriage proposal, no suitor, not even a glimmer of an interested prospect. She suspects it’s because she is far too quick to speak her mind to men who are put off by her forthright opinions, her eager intellect backed by a formal education, and her unconventional ideas about the future. She is far more daring than demure to suit the taste of her class. Besides, Caroline thinks there will always be next season to find a husband.

However, her family’s dwindling income leaves Caroline with only one choice to secure her future: a one-way ticket to sail with the Fishing Fleet to India, where the son of a family friend waits. If the match doesn’t work, Caroline cannot return home.

Captain Thomas Scott loves the thrill of the open sea, and as commander of one of the ships of the “Fishing Fleet,” he ferries scores of young English girls to the shores of India to find husbands. The voyages pay well, but he struggles to understand why families would allow young women to be matched with total strangers so far away.

The trips have always been routine and uneventful—until this trip’s first night’s dinner with one Miss Caroline Gray. She engages in a lively political conversation, presenting opposing viewpoints to the conventionally opinionated gentlemen at her table. Captain Scott is secretly amused and delighted at her boldness, not to mention quite drawn to her beauty.

The rest of the passengers are shocked by her behavior and Caroline finds herself an outcast, suffering harsh judgments from the other passengers. However, she finds an unlikely ally in Captain Scott which quickly draws them closer.

Both know an arranged marriage awaits Caroline at the end of their voyage, yet the attraction between them is undeniable. Caroline will have to decide if she will honor her mother’s wishes and marry a man in India whom she has never met—thus securing a future for her and her mother—or be brave enough to throw convention to the wind and commit to love a sea captain. He may be enchanted by her bold and unconventional ways, but will his love and admiration last?

Review

I’ve been on a bit of a Naval Historical novel kick lately. After reading Georgana’s Secret by Arlem Hawks, A Captain for Caroline was perfect. They have similar themes, characters and ship based settings… historical fiction at its finest.

Caroline is off to secure her future. Her choices are being narrowed at the hand of her family and of an Englishman living in India. She’s a bluestocking–outspoken, intelligent. Being fluent in political discussion is all but forbidden for ladies. She’s not afraid to speak her mind. She believes this practice in London’s society circles fails to make her a match and leaves her without girls to call friends. Trying to fit in with the crowd, Caroline loses her feisty spirit. Wright teaches an important message about being true to who you are.

Thomas is a sea captain, in charge of helping many of the ladies of England seeking a husband to India. He’s stubborn and hard headed at times. As a reader, you’ll find yourself wanting to yell at him for his assumptions.

With stops and starts in their relationship, Wright builds a historical romance which teaches about the dangers of gossip, the need to be true to yourself and the value of sincere apologies. The villains of the story could have been a little more well fleshed out, but that’s about all I missed in this book. I so loved being swept away at sea once again. The Proper Romance series by Shadow Mountain continues to put out wonderful books!

Content: clean, mild violence.

About the Author

Julie Wright wrote her first book when she was fifteen. She’s written over twenty novels since then. She is a Whitney Awards winner for best romance with her books Cross My Heart and Lies Jane Austen Told Me, and she is a Crown Heart recipient for the novel The Fortune Café.

She has one husband, three kids, one dog, and a varying amount of fish, frogs, and salamanders (depending on attrition).

She loves writing, reading, hiking, playing with her kids, and watching her husband make dinner.

She hates mayonnaise.

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Christmas Day in the Morning: Awakening the Joy of Christmas

19 Nov, 2020 by in Shadow Mountain Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Christmas Day in the Morning: Awakening the Joy of Christmas

Christmas Day in the Morning: Awakening the Joy of Christmas

on October 6, 2020
Pages: 48
Format: Hardcover
Buy the BookGoodreads
The true joy of Christmas is to love and to awaken love.

"Christmas Day in the Morning is as gorgeous as the day it celebrates. And unlike so many other presents, the real gift isn't the book itself, it's the simple, pure message. If you give anything this year, give love."
--Jason F. Wright, New York Times best-selling author of Christmas Jars

In this adaptation of "Christmas Day in the Morning" Rob looks back on his boyhood and remembers giving an unusual gift of self a gift that filled him with Christmas joy. Now, fifty years later, Rob realizes he can still give a gift from his heart.

The original Pearl S. Buck story, published in Collier s magazine in 1955, concludes with the older Rob writing a letter of gratitude and love to his wife. As he does, Christmas joy is awakened in him once again.

The final pages of this book provide a place for you to write your own letter of gratitude and love a letter that will naturally be included when you give this book to a family member, neighbor, or friend. As you do, you may experience what Rob learned as a boy, and then again as a man: the gifts most likely to rekindle Christmas joy are not just the presents we give with our hands, but the gratitude we express from our hearts.

About the Author

Pearl S. Buck wrote Christmas Day in the Morning in 1955. She was a prolific author and earned a Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Good Earth. The daughter of Christian missionaries, Buck spent most of her life before 1934 in China. Upon her return to the United States in 1935, she became an advocate for women’s rights and racial equality.

David Warner received his PhD in theatre and film from Brigham Young University and has worked with the Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra on Temple Square for more than a decade.

Georgana’s Secret by Arlem Hawks

18 Nov, 2020 by in historical fiction, proper romance, Shadow Mountain Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Georgana’s Secret by Arlem Hawks

Georgana's Secret

on January 12, 2021
Pages: 320
Format: ARC
four-stars
Buy the BookGoodreads
A Regency romance on the high seas.

1811, HMS Deborah

Georgana Woodall dreams of freedom—freedom from her past and freedom from her secret. She has been living on her father’s ship for years, disguised as a cabin boy named “George.” But hiding her true self is becoming more difficult, and she yearns to break free of her life on the sea.

Lieutenant Dominic Peyton has no time in his life for love, not with his dedication to His Majesty’s Royal Navy claiming his full attention. Determined to prove himself to his new captain, he strives to be an exemplary officer and leader. When he sees the captain’s cabin boy being harassed by the crew, he immediately puts a stop to it and takes the boy under his wing.

Georgana quickly loses her heart to Dominic’s compassion and care, but needing to maintain her disguise as a cabin boy, she is convinced nothing can come of her affection.

Georgana’s Secret is about two hearts yearning to find a safe harbor, and possibly, a lasting love.

Review

So much to love about Georgana’s Secret. I finished it in one day! Naval Historical Fiction, with a touch of romance. Georgana is aboard her father’s ship disguised as a boy, George Taylor. Sea life is hard, disappointing and dangerous. She has lived a life of abuse feeling she is a mistake and a failure. Along comes Dominic. Completely unaware of who she is, gentle and kind to the orphaned ship mate.

This one has a slow moving pace, until the very end, when the action of battle really picks up. There were a few plot pieces which felt a bit off– like her father’s treatment of her, at times, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the rest. There are true to life details which make this feel like a trip back in time between Naval officers in the midst of war. Loved it and can’t wait to read more from the author. Thanks Shadow Mountain for the sneak peek.

Content: drinking, bullying, abuse. Moderate violence, Clean.

About the Author

Arlem Hawks began making up stories before she could write. Living all over the Western United States and traveling around the world gave her a love of cultures and people, and the stories they have to tell. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in communications and emphasis in print journalism, and now lives in Arizona with her husband and two children

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Love and Olives by Jenna Evans Welch

17 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Love and Olives by Jenna Evans Welch

Love and Olives

on November 10, 2020
Pages: 512
Format: ARC
four-half-stars
Buy the Book
Liv Varanakis doesn’t have a lot of fond memories of her father, which makes sense—he fled to Greece when she was only eight. What Liv does remember, though, is their shared love for Greek myths and the lost city of Atlantis. So when Liv suddenly receives a postcard from her father explaining that National Geographic is funding a documentary about his theories on Atlantis—and will she fly out to Greece and help?—Liv jumps at the opportunity.

But when she arrives to gorgeous Santorini, things are a little…awkward. There are so many questions, so many emotions that flood to the surface after seeing her father for the first time in years. And yet Liv doesn’t want their past to get in the way of a possible reconciliation. She also definitely doesn’t want Theo—her father’s charismatic so-called “protégé”—to witness her struggle.

And that means diving into all that Santorini has to offer—the beautiful sunsets, the turquoise water, the hidden caves, and the delicious cuisine. But not everything on the Greek island is as perfect as it seems. Because as Liv slowly begins to discover, her father may not have invited her to Greece for Atlantis, but for something much more important.

When I found out the Author of Love and Gelato had another book out, I had to read it! What a beautiful story of resilience, recovery and chasing one’s dreams. At over 500 pages, I plowed right through without a second thought. Set in magical Santorini, Greece, I was swept away.

Liv’s father is an Atlantis seeker, searching the world over for the lost city, Liv is left behind. When an invitation comes in her senior year to join him, she resists. My goodness, I loved this book! It was a refreshing, clean YA read which explores the intricacies of life. Theo is spunky and unpredictable, his mother a jewel. I laughed and cried, then went online to order Love & Luck. Thanks so much to Simon & Schuster for the advance copy. One of my favorites this year.

Content: mental illness, sneaking out and sleeping in same room as a boy, smoking. No violence. Clean read.

About the Author

Jenna Evans Welch was the kind of insatiable child reader who had no choice but to grow up to become a writer. She is the New York Times bestselling author of Love & GelatoLove & Luck, and Love & Olives. When she isn’t writing girl abroad stories, Jenna can be found chasing her children or making elaborate messes in the kitchen. She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and two young children. Visit her online at JennaEvansWelch.com.

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The Santa Box Blog Tour

16 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

The Santa Box

Cami Carver (Actor), Shawn Stevens (Actor), Spanky Ward (Director)

Rated: NR

Format: DVD

Release date : November 10, 2020

Amazon

For 12-year-old Kallie Watts, Christmas is anything but merry. For the last five years, the tinsel-strewn holiday has spelled disaster for her family, so when an apartment fire leaves Kallie and her widowed mother homeless just in time for the holidays, it comes as no surprise. There’s only one logical conclusion: Kallie is cursed by Christmas. When her mother finds a new job in a small California town, Kallie steps out of the moving van and into her worst nightmare: a real-life version of “Whoville,” overflowing with holiday decorations and brimming with Christmas cheer. Forced to navigate the complicated ins and outs of her jolly new surroundings, Kallie is shaken out of her gloom one day when she discovers an ornately carved wooden Santa box on the porch, addressed to her. The moment she lifts the lid, Kallie’s life is changed forever as she rediscovers the true magic and meaning of Christmas…

Review

The Santa Box had a rocky start in our family with the over the top mom and daughter bully duo, but toward the middle of the show our family was engaged and watching the real story unfold. It has a beautiful story of selfless love and giving a well as forgiveness and hope. We were crying near the end! Perfect for a family Christmas movie with a tender message.

Content: bullying, mention of parent death

Movie Trailer

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

FROZEN 2: DANGEROUS SECRETS: THE STORY OF IDUNA AND AGNARR Blog Tour and Giveaway

13 Nov, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment


I am thrilled to be hosting a spot on the FROZEN 2:DANGEROUS SECRETS: THE STORY OF IDUNA AND AGNARR by Mari Mancusi Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!

About The Book:

Title: FROZEN 2:DANGEROUS SECRETS: THE STORY OF IDUNA AND AGNARR

Author: Mari Mancusi, Grace Lee (Illustrations)

Pub. Date: November 3, 2020

Publisher: Disney Press

Formats: Hardcover, eBook, Audiobook

Pages: 352

Find it: GoodreadsAmazon, Kindle, B&N, iBooks, KoboTBD, Bookshop.org, Order A Signed Copy!

Sixteen-year-old Iduna harbors a dark secret. On the surface, she is an Arendellian village girl, an aspiring inventor, and the best friend of Prince Agnarr, but she is also secretly Northuldra.

Ever since the day the forest fell, Arendellians have despised and distrusted Northuldra with a vengeance. No matter that the Northuldra-along with some of Arendelle’s own-have been trapped in the Enchanted Forest behind an impenetrable wall of mist since the day of the battle.

Iduna doesn’t know why the mist refuses to part, or why it descended to begin with. The only clear thing is that she must keep her identity from everyone, even Agnarr. Her life depends on it.

Fortunately for her, Agnarr doesn’t know that Iduna is the Northuldra girl he saw seemingly flying on a gust of wind all those years ago, the day of the celebration turned disaster. The day Agnarr lost his father, the king. The day Agnarr himself almost died.

What Agnarr does know is that Iduna is a true ally in the face of his royal responsibilities and the expectations of an overbearing council and a well-meaning regent who will rule in Agnarr’s place until he turns twenty-one and assumes the Arendellian throne.

As Iduna and Agnarr grow ever closer, however, friendship is no longer enough. If only falling for each other didn’t mean risking their futures: Iduna’s as a hidden-in-plain-sight citizen of Arendelle, and Agnarr’s as imminent king.

But for a chance at true love, the risk might be worth taking.

Frozen fans and romance lovers will fall for this endearing tale.” — Kirkus Reviews 

“An…enthralling read; one that left me feeling like there is no other way Iduna and Agnarr’s story could be told.” — LaughingPlace.com

 

REVIEW: I enjoyed reading hte backstory of Frozen II. Iduna and Agnarr have a chance meeting from two very different kingdoms–one of earthy magic and one of a Nordic port town. Fate puts the two together. They have a sweet, loving friendship. There are small references and phrases in the story to the children’s movie, but overall, it feels like a perfect fill for an older audience, Young Adult readers. Highly recommend!


About Mari:

Mari Mancusi is a former Emmy award-winning TV news producer, as well as an award winning YA author. She has published more than two dozen sci-fi/fantasy novels for kids, teens, and adults including The Camelot Code, Scorched, and Dragon Ops. Her series have been chosen as featured selections in the Scholastic Book Fairs and clubs and have been selected by the American Library Association as “Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers” and “Popular Paperbacks.” In addition to writing, Mari is an avid cosplayer, traveller, and gamer. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and their young daughter. She can be found online at www.marimancusi.com
 

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Tumblr | Goodreads




About Grace Lee:

Website

Learn about Grace Lee, Disney Storybook Artist!

Follow Grace Lee on Instagram!

 




Giveaway Details:

3 Winners will receive a finished copy of FROZEN 2:DANGEROUS SECRETS: THE STORY OF IDUNA AND AGNARR, US Only. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tour Schedule:

Week One:

11/2/2020

YA Books Central

Excerpt

11/3/2020

Kait Plus Books

Excerpt

11/4/2020

BookHounds YA

Excerpt

11/5/2020

Allie_reads95

Review

11/6/2020

The Momma Spot

Review

 Week Two:

11/9/2020

Do You Dog-ear?

Review

11/10/2020

Thindbooks Blog

Review

11/11/2020

Rajiv’s Reviews

Review

11/12/2020

The Bookwyrm’s Den

Review

11/13/2020

Fire and Ice

Review

 Week Three:

11/16/2020

Nerdophiles

Review

11/17/2020

fictitious.fox

Review

11/18/2020

booksaremagictoo

Review

11/19/2020

A Dream Within A Dream

Review

11/20/2020

PopTheButterfly Reads

Review

 Week Four:

11/23/2020

Lifestyle of Me

Review

11/24/2020

Momfluenster

Review

11/25/2020

ChristenKrumm

Review

11/26/2020

onemused

Review

11/27/2020

Jenguerdy

Review


Week Five:

11/30/2020

Emelie’s Books

Review


The Gentleman and the Thief by Sarah M. Eden

30 Sep, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

The Gentleman and the Thief

Proper Romance Victorian

by Sarah M. Eden

Paperback : 368 pages

Publisher : Shadow Mountain

November 3, 2020

Amazon

A gentleman scribes penny dreadful novels by night and falls in love with a woman who is a music teacher by day—and a thief at night.

LONDON 1865

From the moment Hollis Darby meets Ana Newport, he’s smitten. Even though he’s from a wealthy, established family and she isn’t, he wishes he could have a life with her by his side. But Hollis has a secret: the deep coffers that have kept his family afloat for generations are bare, so he supports himself by writing penny dreadfuls under a pseudonym. If not for the income from his novels, he would be broke.

Ana Newport also has a secret. Though she once had a place in society thanks to her father’s successful business, bankruptcy and scandal reduced his fortune to nothing more than a crumbling town house. So Ana teaches music during the day, and at night she assumes the identity of the “Phantom Fox.” She breaks into the homes of the wealthy to reclaim trinkets and treasures she feels were unjustly stolen from her family when they were struggling.

When Hollis’s brother needs to hire a music tutor for his daughter, Hollis recommends Ana, giving him a chance to spend time with her. Ana needs the income and is eager for the opportunity to get to know the enigmatic gentleman. What neither of them expects is how difficult it will be to keep their respective secrets from each other.

When a spree of robberies rocks the city, Ana and Hollis join forces to solve the crimes, discovering that working together deepens the affection between them. After all, who better to save the day than a gentleman and a thief?

About the Author

Sarah M. Eden is the author of critically acclaimed and award-winning Proper Romance series novels including The Lady and the Highwayman and Ashes on the Moor. Combining her passion for history and an affinity for love stories, Sarah crafts smart, witty characters and heartfelt romances. She happily spends hours perusing the reference shelves of her local library and dreams of one day traveling to all the places she reads about.

Treetops by Peter Bremer- Blog Tour and Giveaway

24 Sep, 2020 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment



Welcome to the TREETOPS by Peter Bremer Blog Tour hosted by Rockstar Book Tours. Check out my post and make sure to enter the giveaway!

About The Book:
Title: TREETOPS
Author: Peter Bremer
Pub. Date: September 18, 2020
Publisher: Peter Bremer
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 443
Find it: GoodreadsAmazon

What would you do if you lost the one thing that matters the most?

Teenager Jackie Ashmore is struggling with the passing of her mother and angry over a cross-country move to Minnesota when she receives an unexpected birthday present that opens up a remarkable fantasy world where creatures from the past and the present coexist. Aided by unlikely animal allies and an aging guardian named Nimbus, Jackie embarks on a desperate rescue mission to save her little brother Dustin who has been kidnapped by a hooded rider and stolen across the clouds. Forced to grow up, Jackie must overcome her own fears and navigate a strange land as she journeys towards a confrontation with a mysterious power named Samuel Flood, who is using the boy for his own hidden purposes. With time running out and unbearable losses mounting, Jackie faces ever tougher choices that will determine not only the fate of her brother, but possibly the Earth below as well.



About Peter Bremer:

Peter Bremer is a librarian at a small college in Minnesota and the author of almost a dozen published professional articles, none of which feature dragons or unicorns or impossibly tall trees. He lives with his wife and furry dog in a very small town and believes that the world, on average, is a far better place with more nature in it, not less.




Giveaway Details:
3 winners will receive a finished copy of TREETOPS, US Only.


Tour Schedule:
Week One:
9/14/2020
Excerpt
9/14/2020
Interview
9/15/2020
Instagram Post
9/15/2020
Excerpt
9/16/2020
Interview
9/16/2020
Instagram Post
9/17/2020
Excerpt
9/17/2020
Instagram Post
9/18/2020
Excerpt
9/18/2020
Instagram Post

Week Two:
9/21/2020
Excerpt
9/21/2020
Instagram Post
9/22/2020
Review
9/22/2020
Instagram Post
9/23/2020
Excerpt
9/23/2020
Instagram Post
9/24/2020
Review
9/24/2020
Excerpt
9/25/2020
Excerpt
9/25/2020
Review