BSBD Header

BSBD Header

Thursday, December 31, 2015

More December Book Reviews


I was on a roll in December and I finally made my Goodreads goal of reading 50 books in 2015. It is a far cry from the 150 I read in 2014 but I will attempt to up my reading in 2016.

I hope you all have a blessed and fantastic new year in 2016!




Plain Peril
by Alison Stone (Goodreads Author)
Paperback, 224 pages
Published February 3rd 2015 by Love Inspired (first published January 30th 2015)

Goodreads synopsis: KILLER IN AMISH COUNTRY 
   After her sister is found dead and her brother-in-law goes missing, Hannah Wittmer rushes back to the Amish community she abandoned to care for her young nieces. Although she makes every effort to blend in, she's still seen as an outsider—and quickly attracts the attention of a killer. She knows Sheriff Spencer Maxwell is fast on the murderer's tracks, but the Amish townspeople are as suspicious of him as they are of Hannah. As threats escalate—now targeting Hannah and the handsome sheriff—they'll follow any trail to uncover a vicious criminal. Even if that trail leads them right to their own backyard.

***

4 Stars

This book gave me stress, I think that is the sign of a good author. I would not have wanted to be in the same situation as Hannah was, the only niggle I had with the book was that it seemed like the two main characters (Hannah & Spencer) fell in love without much interaction. But this still was an excellent book and I would recommend it to any one.

I bought this book with my own money.

***




Winning the Teacher's Heart
by Jean C. Gordon (Goodreads Author)
Paperback, 288 pages
Published April 21st 2015 by Love Inspired (first published April 1st 2000)

Goodreads synopsis: A Hometown Reunion 
   Single mom Becca Norton is surprised to discover her high school crush Jared Donnelly is back in town. The motocross champion hasn't been home in years, but the former bad boy is as gorgeous as she remembers. And his kindness toward her kids melts her heart. But when she learns his true purpose in town is to build a motocross school on land near her home, she has to put on the brakes. Her children's welfare is her priority, and her former in-laws have made it clear they don't approve of Jared or his plans. Soon Becca may have to choose between her heart…and her home.

***

4 Stars

This book is set in the same world as Holiday Homecoming. I enjoy reading the stories set in this world and I hope I can find more. This book was great. It too gave me stress reading it which is the sign of a great author. I was not a fan of he ex-sherrif character. He would be hard to deal with in real life and I was happy to see it came to such a good conclusion with him. I am not so sure it would come out so smoothly in the real world ,,, that is, if I was the one who was in Becca's position.

I hope to read more from this author. Great stories set in a great world.

I bought this book with my own money

Monday, December 28, 2015

December Book Reviews



Holiday Homecoming
by Jean C. Gordon (Goodreads Author)
Paperback, 224 pages
Published November 17th 2015 by Love Inspired

Goodreads synopsis: The Pastor's Christmas Match — Pastor Connor Donnelly is done with romance. After proposing to his high school sweetheart, Natalie Delacroix, five years ago--and being turned down--he's putting all his time and energy into his community. He's determined to make the Christmas pageant he's directing a success. But family and friends are set on fixing up the good-looking bachelor in time for the holidays. And now that Natalie is back in Paradox Lake--and helping with the pageant--they might just succeed. Because working so closely with Natalie stirs up old feelings . . . and Connor starts to hope for a second chance with the one who got away

***

4 Stars

I really enjoyed this small little sweetheart of a book. It had a good hook for me and I do love to see a pastor find his true love.

Connor and Natalie have a past. She said no to his proposal in college and went on to a big network tv career. But all wasn't happy and cheery in her so called dream job. When Natalie is caught up in a scandal she is sacked and comes home to help her mother who has recently been released from the hospital. The mother,  has a plan to get Natalie and Connor back together so she knows Natalie loves to sing and play the piano so Natalie becomes the new pianist at the Paradox Lake Community Christmas Service. Little does she know that Connor is now the pastor of her mother's church and is the one in charge of the hole shindig. This is a great story. Loved every minute of it. Check it out of you love a Christian book with heart.

I paid for this book with my own money.


***

by Barbara Valentin (Goodreads Author)
ebook
Published December 8th 2015 by Smashwords Edition (first published December 2nd 2015)

Goodreads synopsis: The first thing Sara Cleff, a hard-edged, shower-singing rock music critic, wants to do after following a band on tour is crawl into her nice comfy bed in her well-appointed, optimally located vintage apartment. But before making it home, she learns her roommate-slash-boyfriend has apparently broken up with her while she was away on assignment and sublet their apartment out from underneath her. Ouch! When her key no longer fits in the lock, the last person she expects to find on the other side of the door is Andrew Benet, a wickedly gorgeous music director from a nearby church.
Something about the brash music critic strikes a chord with Andrew, and he offers her the chance to stay on one condition—she has to join the choir at his church. While Andrew may hold the lease on Sara’s apartment, does he have the key to unlock her heart?

Assignment: Romance novels:
False Start
Help Wanted
Key Change

***

4 Stars

There was a surprisingly emotional edge to this novel. Sara, a music critic, is left homeless when her so called boyfriend goes back to the UK while is is away on assignment. When she comes back home a new man is living at her abode. He is a music minister at local church. Having the giving heart that he does, music minister Andrew (not Andy) Benet makes a deal with Sara that will give her six weeks to find a new apartment but this karaoke queen must sing in his Choir and  help him land the job at the church on a permanent basis.

This was a great story. It really pulled on my heart strings. I think you will love it to. Please check this one out. New fav author.

I paid for this title with my own money.


***



The Girl on the Train
by Paula Hawkins (Goodreads Author)
Hardcover, 325 pages
Published January 13th 2015 by Riverhead Books

Goodreads synopsis: A debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people’s lives.
   Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.
   And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?
   Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

***

4 Stars

The first thing I have to say about this book is that you really need to pay attention to the names at the top of each chapter. I was in chapter three before I realized that there were three different character who would speak in the first person point of view. At first it is only Rachel and Megan but then nearly halfway through Anna starts speaking in the first person point of view as well.

This book wasn't really what I expected. But I thought it was a good mystery and it kept you guessing until the end who had really killed Megan and why.

I don't want to say too much but if you love mysteries then you will like this book. I read it in one day. Be prepared to not want to put it down until you are finished.

I paid for this book with my own money.


***



Wrong Number, Right Guy (The Bourbon Street Boys #1)
by Elle Casey (Goodreads Author)
Paperback, 341 pages
Published September 22nd 2015 by Montlake Romance

Goodreads synopsis: When a mysterious text message summons May Wexler to a biker bar in downtown New Orleans, she knows something is very wrong. Her sister has sent out an SOS, but when May gets there, she’s nowhere to be found and May is the one in trouble—she’s wearing pink espadrilles, she’s got a Chihuahua in her purse, and she’s in the middle of a shootout.

After tall, muscular Ozzie comes to her rescue, May has no choice but to follow him to safety. At the headquarters of his private security firm, the Bourbon Street Boys, she finds a refuge for the night—and the offer of a job. But it’s not long before a gun-toting stalker isn’t the only complication in May’s life: the more time she spends with Ozzie, the less she can deny that they’ve got some serious chemistry. A wrong number got her into this mess…Will it also get her the right guy?

***

4 Stars

May thinks that her sister, who is getting a new cell phone, has texted her from a new temporary number, has asked her to meet at a shady biker bar in New Orleans. All she finds is trouble there, A man with a huge beard saves her when the bullets starts flying. Now May has a bad man after her. Beard man turns out to be a security expert and he doesn't really have a beard. It was a disguise. He is a tough Marine type and she finds him oh so sexy. When the "team" he is the head of get to know May, they discover her expertise in photography and they offer her a job.

I enjoyed getting to know the Bourbon Street Boys and I can't wait to read other books in this series. If you like romance with a bit of suspense, this is definitely for you!

I bought this book with my own money.

***



The Blonde Before Christmas (A Barb Jackson Mystery 0.5)
by Anna Snow (Goodreads Author)
ebook
Published December 3rd 2015 by Smashwords Edition

Goodreads synopsis: Private Investigator Barb Jackson thought she'd seen it all. But when a last minute shopping excursion leads Barb and her best friend Kelly to a dead Santa Clause beneath the shopping mall Christmas tree, she realizes that not everyone in town is filled with holiday cheer. Jilted lovers, angry elves, and a whole slew of harried shoppers stand between Barb and the truth. But this is one blonde who won't give up that easily! It’s up to Barb and her friends to find the killer and save Christmas before the Santa Claus Killer claims another victim...

***

PI Barb Jackson discovers a dead Santa at the Mall and this novella is all about how Barb and her friend, Kelly try to figure out whodunit! The Sheriff does not want he help and the head of Mall security is over helpful. Santa had a whole slew of ex-girlfriends that could have been the killer burt 
Barb keeps digging until the real killer decides to try and silence her and Kelly.

This is a quick read and it keeps you interested until the end.

4 Stars

I bought this book with my own money.


***


by Carol Durand (Goodreads Author)
Kindle Edition, 190 pages
Published February 5th 2015 by Maven Publishing Co.

Goodreads synopsis: Everyone knows about the rivalry between local celebrity baker Missy Gladstone and the jealous and often zealous donut man Darryl Davis from across town, but no one ever thought it would come to murder. 

As the town gets stirred up over what looks to be their very own version of a murder mystery tv show they can’t believe what’s happening in their little town. If it wasn’t enough that they think Ben’s a suspect, now someone has been lurking around her home after dark. Could she be next? 

***

I wanted to say that I really liked this book but it left me wanting. There was a whole lot of times when the suspense could have been heightened but wasn't. This really felt like a beginner's novel. I felt it had not been copy edited or read through entirely. Lots of things didn't flow smoothly. I gave this book 3 stars because because I thought the mystery had been built properly but not executed properly.

I hope her next novel shows her growth.

3 Stars

I bought this book with my own money.

***


The Collectors’ Society (The Collectors’ Society #1)
by Heather Lyons (Goodreads Author)
Kindle Edition, 355 pages
Published October 23rd 2014 by Cerulean Books

Goodreads synopsis: After years in Wonderland, Alice has returned to England as an adult, desperate to reclaim sanity and control over her life. An enigmatic gentleman with an intriguing job offer too tempting to resist changes her plans for a calm existence, though. Soon, she’s whisked to New York and initiated into the Collectors’ Society, a secret organization whose members confirm that famous stories are anything but straightforward and that what she knows about the world is only a fraction of the truth.

It’s there she discovers villains are afoot—ones who want to shelve the lives of countless beings. Assigned to work with the mysterious and alluring Finn, Alice and the rest of the Collectors’ Society race against a doomsday clock in order to prevent further destruction . . . but will they make it before all their endings are erased?

***

4 Stars

After Alice was in Wonderland she went to an asylum and that is where a man found her and wisked her to New York present day. He pulled her out of her storyland and into the real world. Many storybook characters work together in a company called The Collector's Society in order to save fictional worlds from disappearing. Now, Alice's world is one of the worlds they want to save. She is trained by the society and her new partner is none other than Huckleberry Finn. But don't call him Huckleberry, he hates that.

The Society goes in search of whomever is trying to end the storylines of many of their favorite characters. One of the first suspects is from Sweeney Todd.

This is an interesting novel and I enjoyed trying to figure out who was who and from what book. I really suggest you check this one out if you area  book lover.

I bought this book with my own money.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: Sleighed at Castle Rock (Amelia Grace) by Anne Marie Stoddard



Sleighed at Castle Rock (Amelia Grace)
by Anne Marie Stoddard (Goodreads Author)
Kindle Edition, 48 pages
Published November 29th 2015 by Gemma Halliday Publishing

No matter what season, the holidays can be murder! Bronwyn Sinclair, assistant to Castle Rock manager, Amelia Grace, is feeling Grinchy—but who can blame her? With Ame out of town, Bronwyn is taking over her duties running Castle Rock’s Christmas in July music festival and Battle of the Bands competition. It’s hard enough to get into the holiday spirit in the sweltering summer heat, but things take a turn for the deadly when someone slips mistletoe in one of the judges' drinks. Can Bron scratch the would-be killer off her naughty list before the whole festival is ruined? 

Amelia Grace Rock 'n' Roll Mysteries: 
Murder at Castle Rock – book #1 
Deception at Castle Rock – book #2 
Caper at Castle Rock – short story in the "Killer Beach reads" collection 
Sleighed at Castle Rock – holiday short story coming soon! 

***

A discovery of mistletoe  in a drink of one of the judges leads Brownyn on the trail of a bad guy.

This is the first book I have read in the Amelia Grace series. (Of course, it is the most recent book. I never seem to start at the beginning in any multi-book series.)  I thought it was a good novella. I have read many novellas and I think it is hard to get a complete mystery in such a small package but this author managed to do it. Reading this makes me want to read the other books in the series. I suggest you do too. It is such a fun ride.

Bronwyn Sinclair is taking over for her boss while she is away touring with her band. The venue called Castle Rock is doing a Christmas in July Battle of the Bands. The story follows the crazy antics of the poisoning of a judge and how Brownwyn solves the crime while the bands plays on behind the scenes playing Christmas carols.

4 Stars.

I purchased this title with my own money.