Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Title: Show Me A Sign
Author: Susan Miura
Publisher: OakTara (October 14, 2013)
Pages: 144

Several years ago, my teenage daughter got me hooked on YA (young adult fiction). Since then I've been repeatedly blown away by not only the content of the stories, but the writing, and SUSAN MIURA'S, SHOW ME A SIGH, is no exception.

Right from the start, I was drawn in. I love MS. MIURA'S voice, her humor, and her spot on accuracy to capturing a male teen character. I'm a mother of four, three girls and a boy, and it's not uncommon when reading a novel that I cringe when an authors secondary character is a child of any age. More times than not, they were not successful in capturing the true essence of a kid, whether that be a two-year old or a seventeen-year old.

Nathan Bolivan attends a high school for the hearing as well as the non-hearing. He's had his eyes on Haylie Summers, who's both beautiful and deaf. His excitement of their upcoming first date is quickly turned upside down when he discovers Haylie has gone missing ... and he's a suspect.

Haylie Summers is abducted, tie-up, and blindfolded. Frighten, and not able to hear her captors only adds to her uneasiness. As she remains imprisoned, she wrestles with the answers to the questions swarming around in her head. Why is she being kidnapped, and by whom? Would she make it out alive, or would she never see her family and friends, again?

SHOW ME A SIGN is wonderfully handled in first person between the two main characters. There's just the right amount of suspense, mystery, love, humor, and faith all wrapped up into a believable and powerful story. The flow is natural, with a captivating pace and plot. The humor is refreshing, the characters are three-dimensional, and the writing brilliant.

Though I enjoyed all of the characters, I'd have to say that aside from Nathan, his best friend Alec, is my favorite. He's fun and likeable. MS. MIURA did an incredible job incorporating a teen British boy. With the One Direction craze going on in the teen world today, her timing could not have been better. I loved the interaction between Nathan and Alec. Natural, funny, and entertaining.

Start to finish, there wasn't one thing I'd change in SHOW ME A SIGN. As an aspiring author, I tend to edit as I read. A true sign to a brilliant storyteller is the ability to incorporate all the aspect of what goes into writing a great story, and that MS. MIURA has accomplished. I may be long past my teen years, but you can bet I'll be looking for her next book.

Friday, November 22, 2013


Title: The Christmas Box
Author: Richard Paul Evans
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (October 9, 2012)
Pages: 87

Before I purchase or read a book that I purchased on a whim, I go to Amazon and read a few reviews. Typically, a couple of the five star as well as the one star reviews, getting a feel for both spectrums. The few negative/one star reviews that I read for THE CHRISTMAS BOX, didn’t deter me. Why they believe the book to not be good wasn’t concerning enough. The second thing I do is go inside the book and read a few paragraph to get a feel for the authors writing style.

If there was ever a book I was glad to have not been swayed by the bad reviews, it’s THE CHRISTMAS BOX by RICHARD PAUL EVANS. Wow! One would think it much easier to write a novella, but when in fact it’s harder. With a full-length novel, you have pages of words to convey your story. With a novella, not so much. It takes a skilled writer to pull off a novella that contains all the elements required to make a great story, and that’s exactly what RICHARD PAUL EVANS has accomplished in this wonderful short story.

Richard works hard to keep his family afloat with a shared business, while his wife cares for their soon-to-be four-year old daughter, Jenna. When his wife Keri spots an ad in the newspaper for a live-in family to make a lonely widow - Mary Perkins - meals, along with doing a few odd jobs, they are quick to apply, having outgrown their cramped apartment.

Richard and his family are quickly welcomed into Mary’s home where they soon become a family. There are secrets discovered in the attic, and even greater lessons to be learned.

THE CHRISTMAS BOX will keep your interest, wanting to read the next page before you’ve completed the one your reading. It will capture your heart, your soul, make you smile, and make you weep.

As I began to read THE CHRISTMAS BOX, I didn’t have high hopes for a well-rounded story with only 87 TINY pages. I certainly didn’t expect to be in awe of MR EVANS writing. But that’s exactly what happened. The way he strings words together with brilliant descriptions that flow naturally, is nothing short of amazing. RICHARD PAUL EVANS storytelling is of one that I will not only be reading to learn the craft of writing, but seeking out his future novels.

Monday, November 18, 2013


Title: The Fireman’s Homecoming
Author: Allie Pleiter
Publisher: Love Inspired (May 21, 2013)
Pages: 224

When I discovered the first book in the Gordon Falls series by ALLIE PLEITER, FALLING FOR THE FIREMAN, I knew I’d be reading the series. A story about a black sheep son, THE FIREMAN’S HOMCOMING didn’t disappoint. If I had to choose between the Gordon Falls books thus far, I’d say THE FIREMAN’S HOMCOMING is my favorite.

Clark Bradens moves back to his hometown after years away to take over his father’s position as fire chief. One may think it was joyfully handed to him, but having been the town’s bad boy, Clark finds himself needing to win over the residence.

Melba Wingate left her life in Chicago to move back to the town she grew up in so she could be there for her ailing father. Believing her biggest hurdle was dealing with her father’s failing health, she is shocked by a secret she discovers. A secret that threatens everything she knows, along with the growing attraction to the town’s former bad boy, Clark Bradens.

If there’s one thing I can count on in a ALLIE PLEITER book, its humor. Not only are they well written, with a wonderful plot, she comes up with so many great lines she’ll have you shaking your head, wondering how she manages to do so.

MS PLEITERS ability to write both historical and contemporary is remarkable. However, I must confess I have a strong fondness for her historical.

THE FIREFIGHTER’S MATCH is the next in the Gordon Falls series and next on my list to read.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Title: Gunpowder Tea (The Brides Of Last Chance Ranch Series)
Author: Margaret Brownely
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (October 8, 2013)
Pages: 352

GUNPOWDER TEA is the third and final book in THE BRIDES OF LAST CHANCE RANCH series. If you have not read the first two, I suggest reading them as well, though each certainly stands alone. If I had to pick, DAWN COMES EARLY is my favorite of THE BRIDES OF LAST CHANCES RANCH series.

Miranda Hunt, a Pinkerton Detective, answers an ad for a heiress to the legendary Last Chance Ranch as Annie Beckman. After all she’s perfect for the job. No Pinkerton expects to be married, and that’s exactly what the ad is looking for. It’s the ideal opportunity to find the Phantom, and prove that a woman is up for the task.

Wells Fargo detective, Jeremy Tagger is working undercover when he first encounters Ms Beckman. Little does either of them know, they are both working towards the same goal. To apprehend the Phantom, who rumor has it, is said to be hiding out at the Last Chance Ranch.

Not into mushy romances, then GUNPOWDER TEA by MARGARET BROWNLEY is the novel for you. MS BROWNLEY has an amazing ability to weave a unique story together with feisty characters. Add in a little bit of drama, mystery, action, and humor and you have GUNPOWDER TEA.  

I loved the information at the end of the story, ACCIDENTAL DETECTIVE. How intriguing to learn a bit of the past after reading a fictionalized version. Also included is some history on GUNPOWDER TEA, along with a recipe for GUNPOWDER TEA BREAD. How fun is that.  
*Please see my profile for more information on this review.


As soon as I heard about THE LAST SONG coming out, I knew I had to see it. I was pleasantly surprised by Miley's acting. I think she did a great job. It was an amazing story. Having watched a few of Nicholas Sparks movies, I know to expect something amazing ... except when I read the book first.

After seeing A WALK TO REMEMBER several times, I finally made the decision to read the book. The first I've read by Nicholas Sparks. Though it was well written and a good story, I could not believe how different it was from the book. I mean really different.

I guess I should have then known when I decided to see DEAR JOHN after reading it, how different the movie would from the book. What a letdown, though I'm sure it would have been good if I didn't have the book to base if off of.

Why, oh why do authors let this happen! Or movie directors for that matter. If a book is a hit, why in the world would you change it? And I don't mean minor changes, I mean major changes. It makes me wonder which I should pick between, because clearly reading the book AND seeing the movie isn't working ... for the most part. 

So what are your thoughts?

Friday, October 4, 2013


Title: The Cowboy’s Christmas Courtship
Author: Brenda Minton
Publisher: Love Inspired (September 17, 2013)
Pages: 224
I just can't help myself. When I spot a BRENDA MINTON book at the store, I grab it. If I'm in the middle of reading a book, I'm suddenly inspired to complete it so I can get started on MS MINTON'S book. Her books NEVER sit around my house unread for too long.

Life has not been easy for Layla Silver's. After losing her parents, she's forced to grow up, thrust into the responsibility of raising her younger brother. She's always been a strong independent person, but with mounting bills, and her brother going through a rebellious teen stage, she feels herself faltering.

As Gage Cooper heads home for the first time in months, he runs into Layla Silver's. The girl he used all those years ago to get to her friend. He wants to make amends for the things he's done wrong in his life, and Layla is on the list of those he needs to ask for forgiveness. So why once she gives it to him, does he feel he needs to stick around and do all he can to help her?

MS MINTON is at the top of my list of favorite authors. As a storyteller, she never disappoints. As I've stated in many, and I do mean many reviews, she is an amazing writer. Love her plots, writing style, and characters as they come to life through written words. I always connect to her main, as well as secondary characters. She delivers great lines, never leaving the reader disappointed, and with satisfying endings.

Monday, September 30, 2013


Title: Just One Of The Guys
Author: Kristan Higgins
Publisher: Harlequin HQN (August 21, 2012)
Pages: 384

I’ve only read a couple of KRISTAN HIGGINS noels, and would certainly read more if they were “cleaner”. MS HIGGINS doesn’t only have the ability to write engaging stories, but well written ones (Yes, there’s a difference).

I admit the first book I attempted to read of MS HIGGINS, I didn’t get far. The foul language and main characters lax attitude towards sex, being the reason. As a Christian, I don’t get where the need to incorporate either comes into play. I was pleasantly surprised to discover JUST ONE OF THE GUYS was toned down - at least initially - so I was able to enjoy it. However, I’d still like to see both disappear altogether. I believe it takes a strong writer to do so. Much stronger then own who allows it.

Trevor Meade is part of the O’Neil family, just one of the guys, and that’s all he’ll ever be to Chastity O’Neil That’s if he doesn’t want to risk losing her.

Chastity has grown up in a home full of men, with four brothers, all heroes, serving others. Trevor Meade works with Chastity’s father and brothers on the fire department. To Trevor, she’s just one of the guys. To Chastity, he’s her first love.

What I like about JUST ONE OF THE GUYS:

·       The epilog was good, needed to wrap up loose ends. Always a good choice.

·       Glad the author addressed Matt, Chastity’s brother. If not, she would have owed her readers a second book to tie up his story.

·       Loved what path she took for Chastity’s father, not going the predictable outcome.

·       Loved following the stories of Chastity’s brothers, Matt and Ryan, and their outcome.

What I didn’t like about JUST ONE OF THE GUYS:

·       The ending, literally the last two pages. I wasn’t “wowed” with Trevor’s revealing of his love. I felt it could have been handled differently, impactful rather than seemingly tossed together.
MS HIGGINS spot on details to firefighters and those that are related to them is to be admired. Yes, I’m one of them. A spouse of a firefighter/paramedic. I’ve read other stories with the main character as a firefighter, and they don’t compare. I have no doubt the authors did their homework, but one just cannot create a realistic feel unless lived.

I didn’t take to Chastity’s character right away. She’s tall (I’m just 4’9”), very toy boyish “just one of the guys”. Maybe a little too much. As I became engrossed in the story, she grew on me. Written in first person, the reader isn’t treated to the other characters deep point of view, but MS HIGGINS did a fine job getting her readers – at least this reader – to know the other characters.



Monday, September 9, 2013


Title: The Boss’s Bride
Author: Brenda Minton
Publisher: Love Inspired (August 20, 2013)
Pages: 224

I must admit, I was a little surprised when I ran across THE BOSS'S BRIDE, by BRENDA MINTON, for there was no mention of a cowboy or ranch in the title, or a visual of one on the cover. I'm a HUGE fan of MS MINTON'S, and love anything that involves a cowboy.

Gracie Wilson attempts to make a life of her own, away from her father and overprotective brothers, after ditching her soon-to-be-husband at the altar. She's taken care of the men in her life for far too long. Now it's time to let them fend for their own.

Patrick Fogerty's escape to a small town was every bit intentional, though he'd never imagined finding a "runaway" bride in his store.

I love the concept of the story, though it had a much different feel then the stories I've read by MS MINTON in the past (a total of 18). I have to admit, I prefer the ones with a cowboy as the main character, though I did get excited at the mention of one of Gracie's brothers, a bull rider. I have a sneaky feeling we'll be reading about him in an upcoming book. Yee haw!

Monday, August 26, 2013


Title: Gunpowder Tea (The Brides Of Last Chance Ranch Series)
Author: Margaret Brownely
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (October 8, 2013)
Pages: 352

GUNPOWDER TEA is the third and final book in THE BRIDES OF LAST CHANCE RANCH series. If you have not read the first two, I suggest reading them as well, though each certainly stands alone. If I had to pick, DAWN COMES EARLY is my favorite of THE BRIDES OF LAST CHANCES RANCH series.

Miranda Hunt, a Pinkerton Detective, answers an ad for a heiress to the legendary Last Chance Ranch as Annie Beckman. After all she’s perfect for the job. No Pinkerton expects to be married, and that’s exactly what the ad is looking for. It’s the ideal opportunity to find the Phantom, and prove that a woman is up for the task.

Wells Fargo detective, Jeremy Tagger is working undercover when he first encounters Ms Beckman. Little does either of them know, they are both working towards the same goal. To apprehend the Phantom, who rumor has it, is said to be hiding out at the Last Chance Ranch.

Not into mushy romances, then GUNPOWDER TEA by MARGARET BROWNLEY is the novel for you. MS BROWNLEY has an amazing ability to weave a unique story together with feisty characters. Add in a little bit of drama, mystery, action, and humor and you have GUNPOWDER TEA.  

I loved the information at the end of the story, ACCIDENTAL DETECTIVE. How intriguing to learn a bit of the past after reading a fictionalized version. Also included is some history on GUNPOWDER TEA, along with a recipe for GUNPOWDER TEA BREAD. How fun is that.  
*Please see my profile for more information on this review.

Monday, August 5, 2013


Title: Into The Whirlwind
Author: Elizabeth Camden
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (August 1, 2013)
Pages: 384

Sigh! I do so love ELIZABETH CAMDEN’S books. MS CAMDEN is one of the few authors I adore so much that I don’t need to know the title, see the cover, or be familiar with the synopsis of her new release. Nope. I just flat out purchase it, no hesitations, even when I have a pile of books to be read filling my bookshelves.  
Mollie Knox’s 57th Illinois Watch Company is a victim in the path of the fire that spread throughout part of Chicago, leaving destruction in its wake. Her father’s building may be in ruins, but that didn’t deter Mollie from taking what she was able to save and start anew.
Zack Kazmarek, an influential Chicago attorney, has secretly admired Mollie Knox’s for years. In the mist of escaping the great fire, Zack and Mollie are thrown together. Zack does little to hide his attraction to Mollie, while she does little to help it along. She may be intrigued by Zack Kazmarek, but their differences won’t allow them to be a suitable match - at least that’s what Mollie attempts to convince herself of. 
INTO THE WHIRLWIND only strengthened my love of MS CAMDEN’S writing. What a delight to discover the story revolves around the Chicago Fire. Living only an hour from the city my entire life, I’ve known of the tragedy, yet admittedly with little detail.

INTO THE WHIRLWIND took me on a journey back in time, so real I felt I was reading it in the newspaper as the horrific event unfolded. I was fascinated by the history, getting a glimpse of what the people of Chicago must have gone through. Things I could never imagine. So intrigued, I looked up several videos on the internet regarding the historical event.
What makes MS CAMDEN’S novels so amazing is the way she weaves history, well thought-out characters, an amazing plot, and a unique unfolding of the story together. The majority of romances have a set sequence of events, predictable to say the least. MS CAMDEN breaks the pattern in a refreshing way that only an amazing writer can pull off.
To say that I love her writing and will be looking for more novels by her in the future is becoming redundant. But yeah, can’t wait for the next adventure.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A BRIDE FOR ALL SEASONS: THE MAIL ORDER BRIDE COLLECTION by Margaret Brownley, Debra Clopton, Robin Lee Hatcher, Mary Connealy

Title: A Bride for All Seasons: The Mail Order Bride Collection
Author: Margaret Brownley, Debra Clopton, Robin Lee Hatcher, Mary Connealy
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (June 18, 2013)
Pages: 400

A BRIDE FOR ALL SEASONS: THE MAIL ORDER BRIDE COLLECTION is an anthology of four stories by different authors. I love how each story is connected by the Hitching Post Mail Order Bride, yet stands alone.


Having only read two other books by MARGARET BROWNLEY, I was excited to read AND THEN CAME SPRING. The story began with a strong beginning, drawing me right in, just as MS BROWNLY has done in previous books I’ve read by her.

MARY-JO PARKER crossed many miles to meet the man she was to marry; just to discover he was the subject of the town funeral. If it wasn’t bad enough that the man she was to marry passed away, she discovered someone had tampered with the letters they’d shared, deceiving both parties involved.

TOM GARRETT wasn’t sure what MS PARKER was up too, but he intended to find out. He not only took on the responsibility of his brothers kid when he passes away, he now had to figure out what to do with his mail order bride.


As a huge fan of DEBRA CLOPTON, I snatch up any book with her name on it. The fact that I had read and loved a couple of MARGARET BROWNLEY’S books, and I wanted to read a book by ROBIN LEE HATCHER and MARY CONNEALY, only added to my decision.

I admit I haven’t read many novellas, but what I’ve read, I’ve come to the conclusion that few can pull it off. If you’ve never attempted to write a short story, you can’t begin to understand the difficulties in producing a well written story in so few words. I have to say I was impressed with MS CLOPTON’S ability to do so.

AN EVER AFTER SUMMER, if I’m not mistaken, is MS CLOPTON’S first novella, as well as her first historical. MS CLOPTON delivered in both areas. It’s the best novella to date that I’ve read. Up until now, her stories have been contemporary. I wouldn’t mind seeing more historical from her in the future. As so typical of MS CLOPTON’S writing, AN EVER AFTER SUMMER captured me from the first to the last page. I can’t wait for her next story to be published.

The nerve of that man! ELLIE SMITH  had never considered herself a “Bible thumper”. Just because MR MCCONNELL was misinformed of her faith by someone who took it upon themselves to alter their letters, didn’t mean she tried to hide her faith from him.
MATTHEW MCCONNELL took one look at the woman holding a Bible in her hand and realized he’d been misinformed. As far as he’s concerned, she can turn her pretty self around and head back where she came from. 


I was pleasantly surprised by WINTER WEDDING BELLS by ROBIN LEE HATCHER. It's well writing, with a wonderful plot. That novellas are harder to write then novels, leaves me to believe I’ll be in for a real treat in reading one of MS HATCHER’S full length novels.
I’ve been looking forward to reading one of MS HATCHER’S books for some time. I hadn’t expected to be introduced to her writing through a novella in a collection of stories that included one of my favorite authors, DEBRA CLOPTON. MS HATCHER now has a new fan.

LUVENA ABBOTT hadn’t traveled for days just to turn back around. No, just because CLAY BIRCH wasn’t expecting her arrival to included children, didn’t mean she had the means to head back where she’d just come from.

MISS ABBOTT was every bit as pretty as her picture, but CLAY had made it perfectly clear he wanted no part of a widow with children.  He needed someone strong and courageous. One that could handle the land. The small mining town he called home, wasn’t suited for kids.


Some years ago I read a book by a popular author with a heroin that was from Ireland. Throughout the entire book, the character spoke with a heavy Irish dialect. To date it’s the most exhausting fiction I’ve read. What I appreciated about MARY CONNEALY’S, WINTER WEDDING BELLS, is the mention of the heroines Irish decent, giving the readers just a touch of the dialect. The right amount to let the reader know she has an accent, without bogging down the story.

DAVID LARAMIE has been told he doesn’t have long to live. He placed an ad for a wife who is strong enough to take care of his farm, as well as his children.

MEGAN MCBRIDE knew from MR LARAMIE’S letters that he was sick, but she never imagined he didn’t have long to live, as David professes. Megan plans to not only prove to David that she will be a good mother to his children, but that he’ll be around for many years to come.

Friday, July 12, 2013


Title: Stealing the Preacher
Author: Karen Witemeyer
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers; 1 edition (June 1, 2013)
Pages: 352

UGH! Why did it have to end?
After reading SHORT-STAW BRIDE by KAREN WITEMEYER, I could hardly wait for the next in the series about another Archer brother in, STEALING THE PREACHER.  Having read every book MS WITEMEYER has written, I had no doubt I was going to love the next. She has been nothing short of consistent in delivering a masterpiece.
Crockett Archer is on his way to Texas to interview for a position at a church. One that he has his heart set on. There is no way he could have imagined what God has in store for him.
Joanna Robbins is mortified by her father’s actions. What was he thinking, stealing a Preacher right from a train? Even if he is easy on the eyes and an answer to her prayers.
With the main character a Preacher, the reference to faith was done brilliantly. It was natural, not forced or preachy. The spiritual growth throughout was believable and exciting.
MS WITEMEYER is high on my list of favorite authors. Every word is handled with perfection, with amazing lines that pack a punch, superb writing, a unique storyline, and well thought-out characters that come to life.
STEALING THE PREACHER includes drama, action, humor, romance, family relationships, and faith all wrapped into one amazing story. One that will have you captivated from the first to the last word.
So captivating, I read half of STEALING THE PREACHER while at an amusement park. Though there was much activity around me, I was lost in the story. Taken away to another place and time. The 1800’s to be exact.
MS WITEMEYER has a way of making you fall in love with both the hero and the heroine. Even the secondary characters are distinct, with memorable personalities. STEALING THE PREACHER is not your typical romance. Yeah, of course they get-together, but the path that leads them there and when, is different from your typical romance.
I cannot wait to read about the next Archer brother.

Monday, July 8, 2013


Title: Between A Rock And A Grace Place
Author: Carol Kent
Publisher: Zondervan (September 16, 2010)
Pages: 224

In reading STORIES OF FAITH AND COURAGE FROM PRISON by CONNIE CAMERON and JEFF PECK, I was lead to MS KENT’S book, BETWEEN A ROCK AND A GRACE PLACE. I hadn’t expected to get as much from it as I did. Not only are you given a glimpse into the life of the Kent’s, but stories from others that have gone through trials in their lives.

BETWEEN A ROCK AND A GRACE PLACE by CAROL KENT is not just for those with a loved one that’s incarcerated. It’s for those that volunteer in the ministry, work in the system, or have experienced some really tough times in their lives.


Chapter 1: Grace in the Hardest of Places, Surprised by Faith

Chapter 2: Angels in Disguise, Surprised by Mercy

Chapter 3: Longing for a Better Life, Surprised by Contentment

Chapter 4: The Secret Power of Gratitude, Surprised by Thanksgiving
Chapter 5: Unexpected Kindness, Surprised by Favor

Chapter 6: Why Do You Weep? Surprised by Joy

Chapter 7: A Different Kind of Liberty, Surprised by Freedom

Chapter 8: Dwelling in the Grace Place, Surprised by Adventure

Epilogue: The Ultimate Surprise

I included the contents because it really speaks of what’s between the pages. Trust, compassion, faith, hope, joy, and love.

We all go through trials and tribulations at one time or another in our lives. But what separates us is how we handle them, along with what we take away from it. With God’s love and amazing grace, we can get through anything He places in our path.

Monday, July 1, 2013


Title: The Red Rider
Author: Randall Allen Dunn
Publisher: Character Entertainment (June 29, 2013)
Pages: 340 

When I began to read THE RED RIDER by RANDALL ALLEN DUNN, I had no idea the ride I was embarking upon. Typically a romance reader of books involving a guy with a cowboy hat, I had my doubts. To my surprise, MR DUNN captured my attention, taking me on an amazing adventure.

“Red”/Helena Basque, is not your typical female. Scarred for life from an early age, the nearby villagers did little to make her feel loved, much less accepted, with the exception of one person. The blacksmith’s son, Pierre Leone. He seemed to be the only one who can look past the ugly scars that marred her face. A true friend. But a friend is all he could remain, for Helena knew that it would be nothing less than unfair to allow their friendship to grow into more than what it was.

Helena is soon tossed into a situation that she has no choice but to step-up and take control. Even if that means risking her own life. The Lycanthru’s are determined to take over the province, and they aren’t about to lose to a girl who dresses like a boy, with the audacity to hunt wolves on her own.  

THE RED RIDER is packed full of adventure and drama, with a hint of faith, and a subtle amount of romance. A wonderful combination that is sure to please readers of many genres. As an aspiring writer, I’m in awe of the amazing lines MR DUNN, delivers.

I’m always fascinated when I read a debut novel that captivates me from start to finish. Where a novel is so well written, that I’m in awe of the authors writing, as well as their ability to tell an amazing story. And that’s exactly what I experienced while reading THE RED RIDER by RANDALL ALLEN DUNN.

There are stories with great writing styles. Those that have amazing plots. Those that sustain your attention with every word. Ones that exceed your expectations of great lines, with a satisfying ending. MR DUNN accomplished all of these aspects.

I can only hope that the right person will come across THE RED RIDER, and turn it into a movie that is sure to be a box-office hit.

I look forward to reading other novels by MR DUNN’S in the future.

Friday, June 28, 2013


Title: Illuminated
Author: Erica Orloff
Publisher: Speak; Original edition (December 8, 2011
Pages: 256

Every now and again, I come across a book by an author I never read before, and ILLUMINATED by ERICA ORLOFF, is one of them. I started reading YA books a few years back, and I have yet to be disappointed.

ILLUMINATED by ERICA ORLOFF is a refreshing read filled with subtle, yet just the right amount of drama, mystery, adventure, romance and faith. The writing is excellent, written in first person. The characters are well thought-out, and come to life. I especially enjoyed Callie’s, Uncle Harry, and his partner. Though I don’t agree with same sex marriages, I don’t believe in judging others, either. MS ORLOFF did an amazing job with them. I couldn’t help but love them for who they were.
Callie Martin hasn’t a clue what’s in store for her when her Uncle Harry sends her on a mission to the house of a brilliant antiquarian, with the intention of pairing her up with the man’s son, August. From the moment August sets eyes on Callie, he’s smitten. Together they embark on a journey of a lifetime, and find love along the way.
The pace of the book is good, and keeps you turning the pages. The characters are three-dimensional. The story ended well, tying up loose ends. However, I was disappointed with the end results of August and Callie’s relationship. The reader was left with an amazing confession from August that didn’t match Callie’s or how the story concluded. Their romance ending wasn’t as satisfying as I imagined it could have been. Other than that, it was a great read.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013


Title: Countdown to First Night
Author: Jillian Hart, Margaret Daly, and Brenda Minton
Publisher: Harlequin (January 2, 2013)
Pages: 320

COUNTDOWN TO FIRST NIGHT by JILLIAN HART, MARGARET DALEY, and BRENDA MINTON, is three stories between the covers of one book.


Shelby Craig moves back to Snow Falls with her kids after losing her home, to stay with her grandmother. It was just her luck to run into Ronan Winters on her first night. Even though Shelby had once crushed Ronan’s heart, he still found himself attracted to her. Even when she made it perfectly clear she wasn’t interested in a relationship.


Ellie Summers, a children’s book author, heads out to illustrators, Brody Kincaid’s home. As she heads up the mountain, the weather has her walking the rest of the distance to Brody’s house, intent on discussing his latest drawings for her book. If she thought she was going to leave any time soon, she was mistaking. The weather wasn’t about to cooperate. Meeting his daughter’s changes everything, including Ellie’s feeing for their father.

I have to admit; A KISS AT MIDNIGHT by BRENDA MINTON, is why I purchased COUNTDOWN TO FIRST NIGHT. A huge fan of BRENDA MINTON, I purchase every book she puts out.

Creating a romance in only ninety-six pages is no small task. But if anyone can do it, it would be BRENDA MINTON. It’s no surprise I loved her characters as well as the plot. Her writing skills were certainly not in questions, and on all accounts, she didn’t disappoint.

Jolie Godwin never did forget the kiss she and Jake Wild shared on New Year’s Eve years ago. And apparently either did he. The past threatens to keep Jolie at a distance, but Jake will have nothing to do with it. He’s not the man she has him made out to be, and hopefully he can convince of that.

Sunday, June 16, 2013


Title: The Mountain Between Us
Author: Charles Martin
Publisher: Broadway Books (June 28, 2011)
Pages: 336

THE MOUNTAIN BETWEEN US is only the second book I've read by author, CHARLES MARTIN. I intent to read each and every one he's written.

Dr. Ben Payne is seated next to a beautiful woman, Ashley Knox, on a plane about to take off. She, heading home for her wedding. He, from a conference. When their plane is delayed, Ben seeks the help of a pilot that owns a private plane. At a last minute thought, he decided to ask Ashley if she'd like to share the ride. Neither of them could have predicted what was to happen next.

The first book I read by CHARLES MARTIN, WRAPPED IN RAIN, blew me away. It was in reading that book that I fell I love with MR MARTIN'S writing. There are books that are fast paced, and those that are slow. THE MOUNTAIN BETWEEN US I read at a slow, steady pace, yet found it captivating, engaging, moving, and even educational. When I was finished, I felt as if I were better equipped to survive such a situation.
CHARLES MARTIN has an uncanny way of roping in his readers. Once your begin, it's as if you're living inside the pages. His characters are so rich. So life like. You feel every emotion they feel. You experience what they are going through, as if you're going through it yourself.
MR MARTIN is now included in my list of favorite authors. One that I will continually be looking for his next release.


Saturday, May 25, 2013


Title: Wings of Glass
Author: Gina Holmes
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers (February 18, 2013)
Pages: 400 

When I spot a book with the name GINA HOLMES on it, I don't hesitate. I purchase it. WINGS OF GLASS is the third book I've read by MS HOLMES, and it won't be the last. Each one takes me on a journey, and heightens my ambition to write.

Penny Carson is young, naïve, and broken, when Trent Taylor enters her life. He sweeps her off her feet with the promise of a better life.

Trent is not what he seems to be. He's manipulative, drinks too much, and controlling, like so many men that abuse their wives. He has a past that made him the man he is today, just as Penny has one that allowed her to be in such a relationship.

WINGS OF GLASS is a story that needs to be told. Those that have not been in an abusive relationship can't begin to understand what one goes through. It's so easy for those that have not, to be perplexed why one wouldn't just walk away.

WINGS OF GLASS gives readers a glimpse into the world of an abusive marriage, whether verbal or physical, or a combination of both. MS HOLMES touches on what a wife would go through, as well as the husband and those that have a loved one that's in such a situation. It's so easy for us to point fingers and judge. But what we often don't understand is the story behind the story.

MS HOLMES writing and storytelling never fails. She is a master at stringing words together, and telling a story that will keep readers engaged from the first to the last word.

Monday, May 13, 2013


Title: Her Unforgettable Cowboy
Author: Debra Clopton
Publisher: Love Inspired (April 23, 2013
Pages: 224

What can I say; I’m a huge fan of DEBRA CLOPTON. As soon as I head she was writing HER UNFORGETTABLE COWBOY, I grew very excited, waiting anxiously for its arrival.

Morgan McDermott isn’t please in the least that his father has hired his ex fiancée to temporally fill-in as the teacher for the foster boys on the ranch. No, not one bit.

Jolie Sheridan hadn’t expected to come home to Dew Drop, Texas, and more specifically to Sunrise Ranch. The very place she’d returned her fiancée ring all those years ago. It takes a life threatening accident, but once she’s there, she’s faced with the decision of her past. And a new one that could change the course of her life.
HER UNFORGETTABLE COWBOY is the first of a brand new series. I own each and every book written by MS CLOPTON. I have loved the Mule Hollow series, and didn’t doubt that I would enjoy the Sunrise Ranch as well. I can’t wait to read about Morgan’s two other brothers, or any new characters MS CLOPTON introduces through this new series.

Monday, May 6, 2013


Title: Winning Him Without Words
Author: Lynn Donovan and Dineen Miller
Publisher: Regal (February 15, 2011)
Pages: 208

WINNING HIM WITHOUT WORDS by LYNN DONOVAN AND DIANEE MILLER, came to me in a rather unique way. In reading DIANEE MILLER’S book, THE SOUL SAVER, which was amazing, I learned of WINNING HIM WITHOUT WORDS.

WINNING HIM WITHOUT WORDS is a must read for those that are married to a spouse that is a non-believe or one that may believe, yet doesn’t live their life for the Lord. This book is instrumental in bringing peace to those who feel they are alone in a mismatched relationship.

With ten key points to guide you through your mismatched marriage, WINNING HIM WITHOUT WORDS is a great tool for gaining peace, love, acceptance, and purpose. Not only will your marriage be enhanced by this amazing book, so will your life as you learn how you can be instrumental in God’s work in regards to your spouse.
There’s even a website for the spiritually unequal married, a wonderful place where you can be encouraged and uplifted at, spiritually unequal marriage dot com. Through WINNING HIM WITHOUT WORDS, I was introduced to another book that has been a tremendous help, BOUNDARIES, by DR HENRY CLOUD and Dr JOHN TOWNSEND.

10 Key points:

1)    Commit to Christian community.

2)    Don’t save your husband, save yourself.

3)    Stay connected to your man.

4)    Discover the essentials to love.

5)    Believe your marriage is blessed.

6)    Trade perfection for authentic.

7)    Pick and choose your battles.

8)    Cherish each new season.

9)    Put on the armor of God.

10) Pray the most dangerous prayer.

You may think you are alone is this big world in regards to being married to one that does not share the same beliefs as you, but it just isn’t so. What a blessing it is to be able to read about others going through the same journey as you.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013



Title: One Night With a Rock Star
Author: Chana Keefer
Publisher: Old Barn Press (April 30, 2013)
Pages: 327
Wow, I’m not sure where to begin. ONE NIGHT WITH A ROCK STAR by CHANA KEEFER is now on my list of all time favorite books. What an honor and privilege to have read this captivating story.
The prolog had me a little confused, as they often do. I then moved on to the story where I was immediately swept away. There’s something to be said about first person, and MS. KEEFER did an amazing job. The one thing I don’t like about first person is the lack of the hero’s perspective. What MS. KEEFER did in regards to this dilemma was nothing short of amazing. Her writing is brilliant, with many great lines, a real page-turner.
ONE NIGHT WITH A ROCK STAR is county meets rock at its best, with a touch of Cinderella, in a unique and refreshing way. I loved the vast differences of the main characters lives and how Sky was drawn to the innocents of Esther’s world.
The plot is wonderful, with characters that come to life, and will have you falling in love with then. What female hasn’t dreamt of meeting a rock star, and having a relationship with them?
In reading THE END, I was okay with it. It was a good ending. Not great, just good. Good only because it left me feeling as if there should be something more. As I turned from what I thought to be the last page, I was treated to a, P.S. Kind of a mini epilog. Suddenly I needed to go back and reread the prolog. When I did, it brought tears to my eye as the realization hit me.
But if that wasn’t enough, I started to read the excerpt to the sequel. My first thought, what could the author possibly do with a continuation. As I read each page, automatically absorbed into the next story, it happened. I actually gasped. I don’t think I’ve ever experience a glimpse into a sequel as riveting as the one to ONE NIGHT WITH A ROCK STAR.
Hurry up and get here, 2015.
I must find out what happens!