Book Review: The Perks of Meddling

Happy Wednesday!

Today I wanted to share my thoughts on Christy Barritt’s The Perks of Meddling. Be sure to add it to you TBR pile if you haven’t yet.

About the Book

She’s determined to work this case—with or without permission . . .

Investigator-wannabe Elliot Ransom doesn’t have much clout with the PI firm that recently hired her. When she meets a woman whose “riffraff” sister has gone missing, Elliot can’t resist the urge to help—despite her boss’s stern warning to stay away. But her snooping may prove as dangerous as the jungle she left behind.

As Elliot digs deeper, the underbelly of wealthy Storm River bubbles to the surface. Following the advice found in her father’s old journal, Elliot tracks the killer. But the more she uncovers, the more of a target she becomes. Could a little meddling lead to a vast amount of trouble?

Amazon | GoodReads

My Thoughts

The Perks of Meddling continues with Elliot Ransom getting herself involved in another mystery but this time with the disappearance of a woman.  The book was filled with twists and turns and the ending at the book was a surprise. I cannot wait to find out what Eliot’s going to get into next in book 3 and which guy she’s going to end up with: Michael or Detective Hunter.  

About the Author

Christy Barritt

USA Today has called Christy Barritt’s books “scary, funny, passionate, and quirky.”

Christy, a Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author, writes both mystery and romantic suspense novels that are clean with underlying messages of faith. Her books have won the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Suspense and Mystery, have been twice nominated for the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, and have finaled for both a Carol Award and Foreword Magazine’s Book of the Year.

She’s married to her prince charming, a man who thinks she’s hilarious–but only when she’s not trying to be. Christy’s a self-proclaimed klutz, an avid music lover who’s known for spontaneously bursting into song, and a road trip aficionado.

Christy currently splits her time between the Virginia suburbs and Hatteras Island, North Carolina. She has more than seventy books published with nearly two million copies sold.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram

Post by Contributor Allyson Anthony

Book Review: Puppy Dog Tales by Liwen Y. Ho

Happy Monday, friends! Today, on Diversity Between the Pages we’re featuring a review of Puppy Dog Tales by Liwen Y. Ho! Check out this fun romantic comedy!


About the Book

An animal hater’s and an animal lover’s paths collide the week leading up to Valentine’s Day.

Melvin Lai inherited the last thing he ever wanted from his favorite uncle: a cocker spaniel. Now he’s on the verge of losing his home to the unruly puppy and, much to his surprise, his heart when he meets Dr. Chu, Sparkle’s vet.

Vivian Chu loves caring for her furry friends, so she can’t fathom how anyone could think poorly of her new patient, especially his owner. To her, first impressions are everything, and the one Melvin left has her feeling disheartened and bruised—literally.

He longs to make her his Valentine; she can’t wait to escape him. It’s going to take a miracle for Melvin to win Vivian’s heart, but nothing’s impossible when four-legged conspirators are involved.

Amazon Goodreads


My Review:

This story is such fun to read! It’s a great romantic comedy that is sure to put a smile on your face! 


The characters are both great, Vivian is so sweet, but also spunky (my favorite kind of heroine!) and I could totally relate to her heart for animals. Melvin is fun, thoughtful, and caring, and he’s also flawed, but aren’t we all? I loved seeing him work past his aversion to all things furry!


And of course Melvin’s dog Sparkle stole the show with his sweet spirit and loving heart. I kept wishing Sparkle was real so I could give him a hug and a head rub! 


Liwen Y. Ho has a lovely writing style that drew me into the story and held me captivated throughout! 


I highly recommend Puppy Dog Tales! I listened to the audiobook version and the narrator does a fantastic job, so if you’re an audiobook person I would definitely recommend the audio as well, though this book would be every bit as fun in any format! 

*Note: this is a clean read.


About the Author

Liwen Y. Ho works as a chauffeur and referee by day (AKA being a stay at home mom) and a writer by night. She writes sweet and inspirational romance infused with heart, humor, and a taste of home (her Asian roots).

In her pre-author life, she received a Masters degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Western Seminary. She loves makeovers of all kinds, especially those of the heart and mind. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her techie husband and their two children.

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Post by contributor Caitlyn Santi

Book Revew: Her Cowboy Sweetheart by Cathy McDavid

Happy Monday!

Today I’m pleased to bring you a review of Her Cowboy Sweetheart by Cathy McDavid, the 4th book in the author’s Sweetheart Ranch series and part of the Harlequin Heartwarming imprint of ‘clean, wholesome romances’.

ABOUT THE BOOK

her cowboy sweetheartSERIES: The Sweetheart Ranch #4
GENRE: Contemporary Romance (Clean)
PUBLISHER: Harlequin Heartwarming
RELEASE DATE: May 1, 2020

He’s been a good friend

But can he be her sweetheart?

At Sweetheart Ranch, single mom Carly Leighton finds a fresh start, and a friendly neighbor in former bull rider JD Moreno. Neither are looking for love—Carly must think first of her son, Rickie, while JD is recovering from a career-ending balance disorder. But when her former in-laws demand access to Rickie, Carly turns to JD for support and finds he is becoming more than a friend in need…

Goodreads| Amazon | B&N | Book Depository |IndieBound


MY THOUGHTS

First of all – don’t you just love the cover? That little cowboy is stinkin’ adorable! And both he and the dog steal every scene they’re in at some point. So cute!

Her Cowboy Sweetheart continues the Sweetheart Ranch series with another enjoyable installment. I’ve loved each book so far and this one was a perfect fit with the rest. The sweet friendship between JD and Carly makes a believable foundation for their romance. JD’s Latino roots make him one swoony cowboy, while Carly’s genuine heart makes her instantly likable for readers. Add in her super cute son and JD’s energetic puppy, and you have a feel-good story that will leave you smiling. Of course, we have to deal with some pesky people who aren’t as likable, but this just gives JD and Carly more ways to be protective of each other. Win-win. 🙂

JD’s struggles with Ménière’s disease and Carly’s custody battle with her former in-laws (and parents of her abusive ex-husband) add emotional layers to the plot that give the story further depth and dimension. The author does a great job of increasing awareness for both of these issues through Her Cowboy Sweetheart while also not bogging down or overpowering the story.

Bottom Line: Cathy McDavid delivers another sweet & swoony romance set at the Sweetheart Ranch. Engaging characters and compelling subplots immediately draw readers’ interest and keep it for the duration of the novel. Hombre the dog and toddler Rickie add notes of comedy and warmth to break up the more serious undertones that threaten JD and Carly’s budding romance, and you’ll quickly fall in love with both of them. Another great visit to the Sweetheart Ranch – ready for the next!

Reviewer’s Note:
Readers may want to be aware that there are several casual uses of ‘God’ throughout this novel.
This book is otherwise clean.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.
Review originally appeared on Reading Is My SuperPower.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Cathy McDavidAs a sophomore in high school, NY TimesUSA Today, and Amazon bestselling author Cathy McDavid won a local writing competition with her self-illustrated children’s book. Who knew that small triumph would eventually lead to a career writing contemporary romances with over 1.3 million books sold? With forty-seven titles to date, Cathy is also a member of the prestigious Romance Writers of America’s Honor Roll. This “almost” Arizona native and mother of grown twins recently married her own real-life sweetheart. After leaving the corporate world four years ago, she now spends her days penning stories about good looking men who ride the range or fight fires or hunt creatures all while sweeping the girl off her feet. It’s a tough job but she’s willing to make the sacrifice.

Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | BookBub | Amazon


What about you?
What makes you want to read Her Cowboy Sweetheart?

Book Review: An Alaskan Twin Surprise

Happy Monday!

Today I wanted to share my thoughts on Belle Calhoune’s An Alaskan Twin Surprise. Have you added it to your TBR pile yet? If not, be sure to do so!


About the Book

The family he was supposed to have…

His runaway bride is back…

With twins!

The last person Gabriel Lawson expects to find in town is Rachel Marshall—especially with twin toddlers in tow. Gabriel refuses to risk his heart again on the woman who left him at the altar years ago. But working to renovate her mother’s house means he must spend time with Rachel and her adorable twins…and soon he can’t help but wish they were his family.

Amazon | Goodreads


My Thoughts

An Alaskan Twin Surprise is full of sweetness and a faith that warm your heart. Rachel Marshall has a secret that is heartbreaking as it is an opportunity for God’s healing and perfect work to be evident in her life. I enjoyed watching her go through the journey and especially with the cuteness of her twin daughters.

The book also had some good twists and turns that kept me wondering how they would be resolved. All in all, An Alaskan Twin Surprise was another good read from Ms. Calhoune.

*I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. My review was not required nor influenced.


About the Author

Belle Calhoune lives in Connecticut with her college sweetheart husband and two daughters. After a thirteen year career as a Federal Investigator, she chose to pursue a  writing career.  An avid lover of romance novels since she was a teen, she enjoys writing love stories and reading them. She loves spending summers in beautiful Cape Cod and traveling to new places. A dog lover, she has a mini poodle and a chocolate lab. More than anything, she believes in happily ever afters.

Website | Facebook | Twitter


Post by contributor Toni Shiloh

Throwback Thursday — More Than Conquerors by Kathi Macias

I read More Than Conquerors by Kathi Macias years ago, but it is one of those books that really stuck with me. It opened my eyes to the real life struggles of those living and ministering in Mexico. This book is a highly recommended read! It is also only $1.99 on Kindle right now — what a deal!

True love ignites their passionate pursuit of His call. With violent crime on the rise and the political climate changing throughout certain parts of Mexico, the opportunity for open Christian witness, particularly in some areas of Chiapas State, is rapidly decreasing. Hector Rodriguez pastors a small church in the tourist-popular border town of Tijuana. He also routinely carries Bibles deeper into the hostile areas of Mexico, where he ministers despite increasing difficulty and persecution. Hectors mother accompanied him on one of those trips and felt God called her to stay in the little village of San Juan Chamula, where she uses the Scriptures to teach reading to the families who are open to it.

Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer and radio show host who has authored 30 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. Kathi is a popular speaker at churches, women’s clubs and retreats, and writers’ conferences, and recently won the prestigious 2008 member of the year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association) at the annual Golden Scrolls award banquet. Kathi “Easy Writer” Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband, Al, where the two of them spend their free time riding their Harley.

You can find Kathi online at www.kathimacias.com and at her blog http://kathieasywritermacias.blogspot.com

 

My Thoughts:

Conquistadores — conquerors — this word still inspires hatred and fear in the hearts of the descendants of the once flourishing culture of the Mayans. The Mayans were a people with a very advanced civilization. They had a written language, a developed religious and governmental system, and arts, architecture and literature. A once great society they were finally conquered by the Spanish. However, their language and traditions continue to exist in many central American countries as well as Mexico. Kathi Macias’ newest book, More Than Conquerors, introduces the reader to the modern Mayan, one who still clings to traditions, superstitions, and suspicions of those they term outsiders.

Macias sets her novel in two locations in Mexico — San Juan Chamula in Chiapas State and Tijuana just south of San Diego. San Juan Chamula is a remote  Mayan village in the rain forest. Tijuana is separated from San Juan Chamula not only by distance and bad roads, but by a lifestyle termed primitive even by those living in the poverty stricken border town. But both towns share one thing in common — the grip of evil on their populations. The evil is palpable in the confused psuedo-christian/Mayan worship in San Juan Chamula and in the gang violence of Tijuana.

The scripture that inspires the title of this novel, Romans 8:37, states that children of God are more than conquerors of the things that seek to keep them from the will of God — fear, death, persecution, ridicule, evil forces, and evil men. The verse is illustrated in the characters Macias brings to life on the pages of her book.  Like Macias’ first book in the Extreme Devotion series (No Greater Love), More Than Conquerors is not an easy read. The characters are faced with real life struggles and obstacles. Gang violence, open opposition to the gospel, family and societal pressures are just a few of the things she writes about. The christian life is not presented as a happily-ever-after fairy tale, but as gritty, ugly and tear-filled, yet possessing the peace and joy that only God can give to those He loves.

This book is for those who want to live what they say they believe. Highly Recommended.

(Thank you to Pump Up Your Book and Kathi Macias for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book. The opinions expressed are mine alone.)

 

Book Review: Safe Harbor

Happy Monday!

Today, I’m pleased to bring a book review for Safe Harbor by Christy Barritt, book 2 in the Lantern Beach Blackout series. But don’t worry if you haven’t read book 1 yet (though you really should because it’s good!) – this book works ok as a stand alone too.

NOTE: Lantern Beach is not only the setting of this Blackout series but several other of Barritt’s series as well. You can find a mostly complete list here, and since these books are all set in the same universe, readers get the chance to catch up with beloved characters from previous series in subsequent books as well. Each series can be read as a stand alone series, however, and for the most part the books can be read as stand alones too. And while each book in the Blackout series has its own plot that ties up at the end, there is also an overarching plot that carries over through each book, not to be fully resolved until the last book of the series. So, as I said, you can read Safe Harbor as a standalone but I would recommend reading Dark Water first.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Safe Harbor by Christy BarrittA JOB AS EASY AS SUNDAY MORNING

Guilt over past mistakes haunt former Navy SEAL Dez Rodriguez. When he’s asked to guard a pop star during a music festival on Lantern Beach, he’s all set for what he hopes is a breezy assignment.

UNTIL HE MEETS BREE JORDAN

Bree hasn’t found fame to be nearly as fulfilling as she dreamed. Instead, she’s more like a carefully crafted character living out a pre-scripted story. When a stalker’s threats become deadly, her life—and career—are turned upside down.

DANGER RISES UP THE CHARTS

From the start, Bree sees her temporary bodyguard as a player, and Dez sees Bree as a spoiled rich girl. But when they’re thrown together in a fight for survival, both must learn to trust. Can Dez protect Bree—and his carefully guarded heart? Or will their safe harbor ultimately become their death trap?

GOODREADS | AMAZON


MY THOUGHTS

Dez Rodriguez, former Navy SEAL & current member of an elite security team called Blackout (made up of his fellow SEAL teammates and headquartered on the island of Lantern Beach, NC), is a man with “muscles that could be seen for miles, and a smile that could be seen even farther.” I’ll give you a moment to swoon appropriately at that description …  He’s protective, sometimes broody, prone to long-held feelings of guilt & a sense of duty, but also bighearted and a loyal friend. His reputation as a player may be exaggerated but he’s definitely good at flirting when it counts.

Bree Jordan is a pop star whose career has skyrocketed, though she disagrees with many of her manager’s decisions. She wants to sing her own songs – songs with depth, not the ‘bubble gum’ fluff that is responsible for her rise to fame. Her reputation as a spoiled, rich starlet may also be exaggerated, but she definitely knows how to throw her wealth around when it counts. She lives under a lot of pressure to keep up a certain image but really just wants to be herself.

The tension between these two vivid characters keeps sparks flying throughout this quick-read story. Between their definite romantic attraction to each other and the high-stakes suspense that has them – and readers – on their toes from start to finish, the electricity crackles like a summer storm off the ocean.  And buckle up for that ending – wow!

I loved getting to know Dez more – my interest in him had been piqued in Dark Water and I was curious about his backstory. It was nice to see a couple of peeks into the Cuban culture that gave him part of his heritage, and I also enjoyed seeing him directly in that role of protector that he makes so swoony. Bree became a favorite character, and her character growth throughout the novel was done really well.

Bottom Line: A great read from beginning to end, with a yummy hero & an engaging heroine, a charming island with a host of characters and intriguing backstories , a team of former SEALs with an unsolved mystery between them, and a message of finding your own worth and staying true to who you were created to be. Definitely recommended for romantic suspense fans!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Christy BarrittUSA Today has called Christy Barritt’s books “scary, funny, passionate, and quirky.”

Christy, a Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author, writes both mystery and romantic suspense novels that are clean with underlying messages of faith. Her books have won the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Suspense and Mystery, have been twice nominated for the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, and have finaled for both a Carol Award and Foreword Magazine’s Book of the Year.

She’s married to her prince charming, a man who thinks she’s hilarious–but only when she’s not trying to be. Christy’s a self-proclaimed klutz, an avid music lover who’s known for spontaneously bursting into song, and a road trip aficionado.

Christy currently splits her time between the Virginia suburbs and Hatteras Island, North Carolina. She has more than seventy books published with nearly two million copies sold.

website | facebook | twitter | pinterest | instagram


What about you? What makes you want to read Safe Harbor?

Book Review: The Solid Grounds Coffee Company

We made it to Friday! WOOHOO! This has been a week, but you know what I do when weeks are frustrating? I grab some coffee and read a good book. This week I read The Solid Grounds Coffee Company which is the last book in The Saturday Night Supper Club series by Carla Laureano. This series has been fantastic to read!

 

About the Book

The Solid Grounds Coffee Company (The Saturday Night Supper Club) by [Laureano, Carla]

Analyn Sanchez can handle the long hours and arrogant clients that come with her job as a crisis management associate at Denver’s largest publicity firm. The high-powered job, expensive condo, and designer wardrobe are all part of her plan to prove to her family that her life choices haven’t been in vain. But when she’s asked to cover up a client’s misdeeds with serious moral and legal ramifications, she can no longer sacrifice her conscience for her career . . . and the cost is no less than her job.

Ever since a devastating climbing accident in South America eight months ago, and a bad decision that dried up his sponsorships, professional rock climber Bryan Shaw has found himself at similar loose ends. When the opportunity to buy a coffee farm in Colombia arises, he jumps on it—only to discover his wandering ways have left him utterly unprepared to run a business.

When Bryan returns home and offers Ana a role in his company as a solution to both their problems, she’s desperate enough to consider working with the far-too-flippant and far-too-handsome climber, even though he’s the polar opposite of her type A nature. As they delve deeper into the business, however, she begins to suspect there’s much more to Bryan than she’s given him credit for . . . and that sometimes the best plans are the ones you never see coming.

Goodreads | Amazon


My Thoughts

Laureano has proven once again that she is a fantastic story teller. Readers have been waiting patiently for this story, and it did not disappoint. What I didn’t expect was to have the prodigal son story to hit me so hard, so fast. Bryan is a character we can all relate to at some point in our lives. He lived life for himself, until he came to a point where all he could do was look up and realize who he needed to live for. From that point on Bryan is different. Yes, he still had some faults and bumps. But Laureano weaves an encouraging tale of how the broken can be made whole over time. They will continue to have imperfections, yet still grow as individuals.

Bryan and Ana’s love story is probably my favorite of this series. The attraction is always there for sure, but Laureano took her time with them. Their relationship wasn’t forced. There were obstacles to overcome, as there is with any new relationship. Readers have been waiting for this story for the entire series after all! What I loved most is that Bryan and Ana were real with each other. They had some real conversations, sweet moments, laughable moments, and all around great chemistry.

While I am sad to see this series go, I can honestly say Laureano ended it with a bang. And the good thing is, we can visit these friends at any time! I highly recommend reading this series, from start to finish. I think you’ll find the friendships and relationships will bring a smile to your face, and some encouragement to your hearts.

 

 


About the Author

Carla Laureano
Carla Laureano is the RITA® Award-winning author of contemporary inspirational romance and Celtic fantasy (as C.E. Laureano). A graduate of Pepperdine University, she worked as a sales and marketing executive for nearly a decade before leaving corporate life behind to write fiction full-time. She currently lives in Denver with her husband and two sons, where she writes during the day and cooks things at night.

Connect with Carla online at her website (www.carlalaureano.com) or on any of these social media platforms:

Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
Pinterest


 

Do you enjoy reading friends-to-romance stories? 

Book Review: A Long Bridge Home

Happy Friday everyone! I’m happy to be sharing book two in the Amish of Big Sky Country Series by Kelly Irvin. Set in the Montana mountains, it’s sure to make you want to go and enjoy the beauty of God’s creation for a while.

 

About the Book

alongbridgehomeAfter her community in the awe-inspiring Montana mountains is suddenly consumed by a raging wildfire, one young Amish woman finds herself in a new town where she’s introduced to the Native culture of the Kootenai people.

When the Mast family is forced to evacuate their home in the West Kootenai region of Montana, Christine chooses not to move with her family to her father’s childhood home in Kansas. Instead, she wants to stay closer to home and to her beau, Andy Lambright, who has yet to ask for her hand in marriage and who seems to be holding tightly to secrets from his past.

Now, living with her aunt and uncle in St. Ignatius, Christine is on her own for the first time in her life. While working in her uncle’s store Christine meets Raymond Old Fox, whom she befriends, and he introduces her to his rich native culture with strong ties to the earth and nature. Despite the warnings of her aunt and uncle, Christine is inexplicably drawn to Raymond, and her mind is opened to a history and heritage far different from her own.

With her newly expanding horizons, Christine wonders if she can return to the domestic life that is expected of her. Her heart still longs to be with Andy, but she isn’t the same person she was before the fire, and she wonders if he can accept who she is becoming. Has too much distance grown between them? Or can they bridge the gap from past to present and find their way back together?

 

Goodreads | Amazon


My Thoughts

Irvin takes readers into the beautiful West Kootenai region of Montana in A Long Bridge Home. My heart ached for Christine and the entire community as the wildfires spread and took their homes. Irvin’s descriptive writing had me right there with them, running throughout the house, trying to get the necessary items. At times I felt as if I could even smell the smoke, see the haze in the distance, and feel the fear of having to escape. At a time when wildfires seem to be across the world, it certainly made them more real to this New Yorker, and my empathy for those in the path of the wildfires has doubled.

But Irvin paints a picture of how God can turn something tragic, life a wildfire destroying a community, into something beautiful. Christine meets Raymond Old Fox, and their friendships is perhaps the most beautiful part of this entire story, and just what readers needs to see in today’s world. Two people, with different cultures and beliefs, are able to come together and teach each other about their ways. Each had an open mind to listen to the other, contemplate what they’d heard, and amicably speak about their differences. Neither placed judgement. There was no heated arguments, or pressure to change viewpoints. It was simply talking, teaching, and inspiring. Christine learned that while Raymond’s beliefs were different, there was some value to them. There was away she could apply portions of it to her own life while still honoring God. And isn’t that what we are supposed to do? Find ways to honor our Lord? I can’t express how deeply their friendship moved me as I was reading.

Rest assured there is much more to this beautiful story. Romance, faith, community, family, restoration, and the beauty of God’s creation. I highly recommend reading this delightful read. I hope it speaks to your heart as much as it did my own!

 


About the Author

Kelly Irvin

Best-selling novelist Kelly Irvin’s latest series, The Amish of Sky Country, features an Amish community in Northwest Montana affected by wildfires that destroyed thousands of acres in the state in recent years. The first book, Mountains of Grace, debuted in August 2019, and delves into the impact on not only an Amish man and woman, but also a smoke jumper, a sheriff’s deputy, and a young English woman forced to confront her past because of the fires.

Kelly also writes romantic suspense novels. Her most recent forays into this genre include Tell Her No Lies and Over the Line, both set in San Antonio and South Texas. Of Tell Her No Lies, The Library Journal says, “Irvin creates a complex web with enough twists and turns to keep even the most savvy romantic suspense readers guessing until the end. Known for her Amish novels, this two-time Carol Award finalist shows that her talents span subgenres from tranquil Amish stories to rapidly paced breathless suspense.”

The Kansas native is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and the ACFW San Antonio local chapter Alamo City Christian Fiction Writers, as well as Romance Writers of America (RWA) and Sisters in Crime.

Kelly retired in 2016 from her position of 22 years as public relations manager for the San Antonio Parks and Recreation Department, where her duties included writing and designing an employee newsletter, writing news releases, collaborating on marketing campaigns, coordinating ribbon-cuttings and groundbreakings, coordinating press conferences, updating the web site, and acting as a media spokesperson.

Kelly has been married to photographer Tim Irvin for more than 30 years, and they have two young adult children and three grandchildren. In her spare time, she likes to write short stories, read books by her favorite authors, and visit the babies.

For more information, visit http://www.kellyirvin.com


 

Do you enjoy reading books set in the mountains? What aspect of this book do you most look forward to?

Book Review: Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge

It’s Fri-yay!! I hope you’ve had a great week and have a weekend ahead full of great reads! One of my very fave authors is Ruth Logan Herne – her warmth and heart exude from the pages of her stories into a soul-deep hug. I’m delighted to bring you my review of her upcoming release, Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge! Jazz has been a prominent secondary character in the first two books of this series, and I’ve been eagerly waiting for her story.

About the Book

findingpeaceinwishingbridgeCreator of the bestselling “Welcome to Wishing Bridge” and “At Home in Wishing Bridge” award-winning author Ruth Logan Herne invites readers back to the little town with the big heart with “Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge”.

Being a supermodel isn’t just hard.

It can be a killer, so when international sensation Jazz Monroe answered a friend’s call for help, she’d just taken a hiatus from the job that made her a very rich woman and almost took her life. Outwardly Jazz was everything anyone would want to be. Beautiful, confident, rich and famous, and often seen on the arm of some of the world’s most eligible bachelors, Jazz knows the truth she hides. Her self-confidence is an act and the eating disorder that plagues her refuses to let her rest.

But then she and her old friend Thea are called to help a friend and fulfill a pledge they’d made a dozen years before as high school seniors. If any one of the three ever needed help, the others would come running. Last December, Kelsey made that call and her two old friends, the other members of the “Soul Sisterhood”, responded. They’re here now. Thea is practicing medicine, Kelsey has married the hero deputy that saved her life and Jazz is finding the hints of peace that have eluded her for nearly two decades. She settles into the little town, helping out at a local diner, waiting for the sky to fall.

It doesn’t. Instead, the sun begins to shine, winter fades to spring, and surrounded by new and old friends, Jazz begins to believe in herself. She loves the small town, the kindness of the locals, the warmth of the family diner and the special attention from two very different and distinct men makes her think new thoughts. Thoughts of family and picket fences and settling down.

But an unexpected attack on a wood-edged path reignites her fears and insecurities. Now she’s looking in shadows again, doubting herself and others. In Manhattan, locked elevators and a staffed entrance desk kept her safe from intruders.

Wishing Bridge has nothing like that. Here, she lives life at ground level, with no bodyguards watching out for her. But when a local contingent makes it their job to keep her safe, Jazz learns not to sell the small town short. Folks here mean what they say because that’s the kind of town Wishing Bridge is.

As Jazz rediscovers the most important things in life, she realizes that happiness isn’t about where you are: it’s about who you’re with. And who you love.

Join Jazz, Kelsey, Thea and the rest of the Wishing Bridge cast as they band together to help the town and one another because together– in Wishing Bridge– they can make anything happen.

Goodreads | Amazon


My Thoughts

First, let me say that I’m THRILLED to learn that Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge is not the last book in the series. I was afraid that, since we’ve been given a story for each of the three friends in the Soul Sisterhood, this would be our last visit to Wishing Bridge. But I wasn’t quite ready to leave yet – I enjoy the secondary & even tertiary characters and the setting so much. This town is truly a special place, albeit a fictional one, and I’m delighted that we’ll be returning there in 2021.

Now, on to the review of this book. Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge was everything I hoped it would be and more. Jazz’s story, like Kelsey & Thea’s before her, is complex and layered – a former international supermodel who realized quickly that the industry can destroy you from the inside out, finding her footing again in this sweet little town and enjoying the freedom of just being herself. Until her past comes back to stalk her – literally – and now I want Herne to branch out into romantic suspense. Because the scene snippets from the stalker’s point of view, the feeling of danger that exuded off the page whenever Jazz was alone, the protectiveness of Garrett & her other friends – it was all pitch perfect and kept me glued to the story.

Keep a tissue box handy for this read though – there are some gutwrenching moments walking alongside the heartwarming ones. One particular plot twist left me absolutely bereft, and another plot point had me blinking back tears more than once.

Another thing I love about this series are the children. Herne is nearly unparalleled in her ability to create child characters that you want to reach inside the pages and hug close. Endearing, precocious, charming… even with backstories that sadly reflect the reality for many children today. Yet, each word is penned with heart and compassion and the author’s love for children is clearly felt. In Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge, we get to know more about Emerson, whom we met briefly with his dad in the previous book. And oh my stars, what a sweetheart. He kept a grin on my face in every scene he was in – despite a little lump in my throat as well thanks to his story.

Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge is at its heart a story of friendship, faith, and the kind of family you create above & beyond the one you’re born into. Endearing, diverse characters you’ll quickly fall in love with and a charming setting welcome you to Wishing Bridge with each new book and Jazz’s long-awaited story is no exception. Definitely put this series – and the latest book – on your must-read list!


About the Author

ruthyUSA TODAY bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne is about to welcome her 53rd and 54th books to book shelves in March and April, so she’s pretty stoked about romance, about love and crazy-stoked about faith!

You can friend her on facebook, follow her on Twitter, visit her website ruthloganherne.com or email Ruthy at loganherne@gmail.com She loves to chat with readers and writers and she also loves God, family, faith, friends, fun and fiction…. and add chocolate and coffee to that list!


What interests you most about Finding Peace in Wishing Bridge? Have you read the other two books in this series?

Book Review: A Worthy Heart

Happy Friday!

Not only is it Friday, but it’s Valentine’s Day! A good day to read a romantic book, don’t you think? That’s why I’m sharing A Worthy Heart by Sara Beth Williams. This sweet story is the perfect Valentine’s Day book to curl up with!


About the Book

A Worthy Heart

Joel Bennett has always known Serena Hayes as his sister’s gregarious best friend. In the three years since Lacey began college, Serena became a regular houseguest, but lately, she’s absent more than not. When Joel discovers she’s in an abusive relationship, protectiveness from within roars to life.

With only a part time job to support her and nowhere to go, Serena fears leaving her current relationship would jeopardize her chances of graduating college. After a brutal attack leaves her no choice, she courageously moves out. On her journey toward regaining confidence, self-worth, and independence, Joel falls in beside her, encouraging her. The way he emulates Godly love and compassion draws her close—not just to him, but to the God who can satisfy her longing for love better than any man,

Attraction sizzles between them, but events from their pasts cast shadows of doubt. When the unthinkable happens, can Serena open her heart to a second chance at love, or is she destined to be alone?

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My Thoughts

Sara Beth Williams has given readers a story that will absolutely touch their hearts. In a powerful story of fighting for yourself, relying on a God who is big enough to get you through anything life throws at you, and how second chances can sneak up on us during the times we are least expecting it, Williams shows readers that you really can get out of a tough situation.

There is no denying that abuse is a hard topic. It’s tough to write, it’s tough to read, and even watch in real life if we know someone who suffers from it. And while Williams doesn’t get gruesome with her details, she writes enough for readers to know exactly what is happening. It absolutely broke my heart, and the way Serena dealt with it for so long, it just made me angry. Here’s the thing – there are so many women suffering from this very thing that do not feel like they can escape either. Or they tell themselves it won’t keep happening, their boyfriends/husbands love them, etc… But this book, well it gives these women hope. Hope that there is people out there who can help them. If for nothing else, read this story for that!

Aside from that, it really is a well written story. The characters are wonderful – especially Joel. What a caring, protective hero that readers will most likely swoon over. He doesn’t judge, and sometimes he doesn’t ask – he just takes action. I love seeing a man’s protective instincts, and Joel certainly shared his throughout the story. At one point I thought those instincts would get him in a bit of trouble – I guess you’ll have to read for yourself to see if he did or not!

At the end of the day, Williams reminds readers of God’s ability to turn something horrible into something good. This is a story that will stay with me for a long time, and I hope to share it with others who could benefit from its powerful message. I encourage you to do the same! I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.


About the Author
Author-Photo__Sara-Beth-Williams

Sara Beth Williams has loved to read and write since her elementary school days. She loves a good story, regardless of platform. Therefore, she hates watching TV episodes out of order! (God forbid she should miss something vital to the overall story line!)

She was raised in Sacramento, California, and still resides there with her husband, two beautiful daughters, a lovable old pit bull and a spunky and very shaggy Pomeranian. Her time is currently divided between working, raising her daughters and doggies, and writing every spare moment she can.

She loves children, writing, music, teaching and playing with children and a good, soaking rainstorm.

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Post written by contributor Jessica Baker