Now and Forever by Mary Connealy

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Now and Forever by Mary Connealy

Published: 2015

Publisher: Bethany House

Series: Wild at Heart(Book 2)

Goodreads Summary: Matthew Tucker survives a grizzly attack by jumping over a cliff into a rushing river. Unexpectedly, Shannon Wilde takes the plunge with him. Going through a series of waterfalls and rapids turns into a bonding experience.
By the time they battle their way back to civilization, Shannon has been thoroughly compromised, and only a wedding will do. A mountain man who loves to wander in the wilderness far from other people finds himself hitched to a young woman with a passel of relatives, a homestead, and a flock of sheep to care for.
As they learn to live with each other, strange things begin to happen on Shannon’s land. Someone evil clearly wants to drive them off, but whoever it is, apparently didn’t count on Tucker. Trying to scare Matthew Tucker just makes him mad–and trying to hurt the woman he’s falling in love with sets off something even Matthew never expected.

What I Liked: Matt was a mountain man but one look into Shannon’s eyes and he knew he wanted her for himself. Yet could he be the husband she deserves? Shannon finds herself jumping off a cliff in the arms of a mountain man who she spends the next few days with trying to return to her family.  The next thing they both know they are hitched for better or for worse. I liked both Shannon and Matt. I always enjoy Mary’s humor and friction between her male and female leads.

What I didn’t like: As much as I wanted to love this book it was just okay. I very much liked Matt and Shannon but they liked each other from the start and there was not as much romantic friction between these two characters as some of her other books. They did have to work out issues between them it was just not as funny or entertaining as I expected. I also found the suspense of who was trying to take the farm very predictable. I just think this book would have been a little better had Shannon and Matt not just agree to get married but have a little more friction at least for a little while.

     I still enjoyed the book. Just find myself looking forward to the third book half way through this one. I still highly recommend this book as there are lots of laughs and a good plot. I can’t wait to read book three this fall.

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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

Posted in 2015 Reviews, 4 Stars, Bethany House, Mary Connealy, NetGalley, Romance, Western Romance | Leave a comment

A Faith of Her Own by Kathleen Fuller

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A Faith of Her Own by Kathleen Fuller

Published: 2015

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Series: None

Goodreads Summary: Can Anna Mae heed God’s call on her life, even if it means leaving behind everything she knows . . . and everyone she loves?
Ever since Anna Mae’s childhood friend Jeremiah left their Amish community, she’s questioned her own place in the Amish world. The Amish life feels as if it’s closing in on her, and with her mother trying to set her up with potential suitors, Anna Mae feels trapped in a life she’s not sure she wants anymore. But she’s never told anyone that she longs for a tiny taste of freedom–freedom that could be very costly.
When Jeremiah suddenly reappears in Middlefield to help his mentor, Yankee veterinarian Dr. Miller, new questions surface for Anna Mae, along with feelings she’d never fully acknowledged before.
As Anna Mae and Jeremiah rekindle their friendship, old feelings take on new meaning. Yet the question still lingers: What is God’s plan for her life? Should she stay, keeping loyal to her Amish family, or does God have a bigger plan–one that provides more freedom than she could imagine? The answers do not come easily, and the answer to God’s call may lie in different directions . . . for both of them.

What I liked: Anna Mae is being pressured by her mom to settle down and get married. As much as she loves her family and community she feels unhappy. When her childhood friend Jeremiah returns to work with the local veterinarian the friendship is rekindled and she really starts to question what she wants to do with her life. I enjoyed that this story dealt with how leaving the Amish community can  affect a family and how it can work. Jeremiah had to face his father who he hurt deeply when he left the community years ago. I really liked Anna Mae and Jeremiah. I also like how this book took time to develop and didn’t feel rushed.

What I didn’t like: The only part of this book I didn’t love was the ending. Don’t get me wrong the ending wasn’t bad, but the epilogue was a letdown. The ending left me wanting to know just a little more so it was kind of disappointing on that front.  

     Overall this was a good book and I really enjoyed it. This book dealt with leaving the community. A lot of books on this subject, the characters are shunned or they don’t have a good relationship with family after. I like how this book had hurt and disappointment but in the end there was also forgiveness and acceptance.

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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

Posted in 2015 Reviews, 5 Stars, Amish Fiction, Kathleen Fuller, NetGalley, Romance, Thomas Nelson | Leave a comment

Dauntless by Dina L. Sleiman

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Dauntless by Dina L. Sleiman

Published: 2015

Publisher: Bethany House

Series: Valiant Hearts(Book 1)

Goodreads Summary: Though once a baron’s daughter, Lady Merry Ellison is willing to go to any lengths to protect the orphaned children of her former village. Dubbed “The Ghosts of Farthingale Forest,” her band of followers soon become enemies of the throne when they hijack ill-gotten gold meant for the king.
Timothy Grey, the ninth child of the Baron of Greyham, longs to perform some feat so legendary that he will rise from obscurity and earn a title of his own. When the Ghosts of Farthingale Forest are spotted in Wyndeshire, where he serves as assistant to the local earl, he might have found his chance. But when he comes face-to-face with the leader of the thieves, will he choose fame or love?

     Dauntless takes readers into the Medieval(Middle Ages) a time period many know and love. If you know the story of Robin Hood then this book might interest you. Merry is the leader of a young group of teens and children who were orphaned when their parents were killed. They steal food and supplies to survive but the king things it’s a group of men not kids. Timothy works for a Lord and takes on finding these outlaws so he can advance in his career. What he doesn’t expect is to know the leader of the group. Will he follow through with his plans or allow his heart o create a new one.

What I liked: I couldn’t help but like Merry and her group of young kids. She had more courage than most, but she still did not believe God loved her after losing her family and all she held dear. Timothy wanted to save Merry from certain death but found himself drawn to her whole group. The other teens who Merry worked and lived with were fun side characters and it will be interesting to see who we follow in the next few books. 

What I did not like: The one thing about this book that made it a little hard for me to relate to was how young everyone was. The oldest kids in the group were only teenagers. They were written more like adults and it just felt weird at times. This book might even be considered YA.

     Overall I liked it and look forward to the next book in the series. This can be a fun time period to read about and this book did a great job of making me feel like I was there. Definitely a book to add to your reading list.

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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

Posted in 2015 Reviews, 4 Stars, Bethany House, Dina Sleiman, Historical Fiction, NetGalley, Romance, Valiant Hearts | 1 Comment

The Trouble with Patience by Maggie Brendan

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The Trouble with Patience by Maggie Brendan

Published: 2015

Publisher: Revell

Series: Virtues and Vices of the Old West(Book 1)

Goodreads Summary: Patience Cavanaugh has lost hope in romance. The man she yearned to marry is dead and her dreams are gone with him. Now she is consumed with the restoration of a dilapidated boarding house in order to support herself. Despite her desire for solitude, Jedediah Jones, the local sheriff with a reputation for hanging criminals, becomes an ever-looming part of her life. It seems like such a simple arrangement: Patience needs someone with a strong back to help her fix up the boardinghouse, and Jedediah needs a dependable source of food for himself and his prisoners. But Patience gets more than she bargained for as she explores the depths of the “hanging lawman”–and finds both betrayal and love.

What I liked: I liked the set up for this book. A lonely sheriff with a past and a witty young woman trying to make a go of it on her own. It had the typical story of the main characters not liking each other at first. I liked both Jebediah and Patience.

What I didn’t like: For me there was a lot in this book I didn’t like. It moved kind of slow at times. Patience’s mom came to visit and after years of tension between the two of them suddenly everything was fixed. So not believable. A man that Jebediah had wronged forgave him without much effort, again just seemed too easy.  There were other instances where the story just seemed to simple.

     Overall this book was okay but not one I would read again and I most likely will not read any more of the series.

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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

  

Posted in 2 Stars, Historical Fiction, Maggie Brendan, NetGalley, Revell, Romance | Leave a comment

My Heart Stood Still by Lori Copeland

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My Heart Stood Still by Lori Copeland

Published: 2015

Publisher: Harvest House

Series: Sisters of Mercy Flats(Book 2)

Goodreads Summary: “The Sisters of Mercy Flats”, begun in Promise Me Today, continues in this wonderful new Western-flavored historical romance. The McDougal sisters are experts at swindling men, and this time Anne-Marie enters into a bargain bordering on blackmail–with a Crow warrior.

     Book two opens with the 3 sisters being saved by 3 different men once again. This time Anne-Marie’s saved by an Indian. All she wants is to find her sisters and all he wants is to finish his mission. Oil and water do not play well together. Creed needs to finish his orders and having a woman tagging along does not help. The more he is with her the more he starts to care yet he’s been promised to another many years ago. Can he keep his word or will he follow his heart?

What I liked: Anne-Marie finds herself saved by an Indian who she soon finds out is more complicated than he first let on. She just wants to get back to her sisters but finds herself stuck tagging along with Creed and his sidekick. I really enjoyed how Anne-Marie and Creed interacted. The plot of this book was good. I enjoyed the suspense of how they were going to get out of the tribes camp without being noticed. I found that Anne-Marie was not wanting to listen to Creed and doing her own thing which, of course, got her in trouble is a lot like us when we don’t listen to God. We find our self in trouble and remorseful and just when we think we are out of options God will help us find our way. This may not be without consequences, but he never leaves us.

What I didn’t like: I really can’t find much to not like about this book.

     Overall this was an enjoyable book. The characters were well-developed. I though the humor was well threaded into the book.  I have enjoyed the series so far and look forward to the last book. Even though this is a series book it can easily be read as a stand alone.

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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

Posted in 2015 Reviews, 4 Stars, Harvest House, Lori Copeland, NetGalley, Romance, Series, Sisters of Mercy Flats, Western Romance | Leave a comment

A Woodland Miracle by Ruth Reid

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A Woodland Miracle by Ruth Reid

Published: 2015

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Series: The Amish Wonder(Book 2)

Goodreads Summary: For a disadvantaged young woman and a displaced young man, a lasting love is going to take more than chance–it’s going to take a miracle.
Muscle weakness has left Grace Wagler with a broken body–and her childhood best friend has left her with a broken heart. She can hold her own in the timber camp (and do everything else the other women in Badger Creek can do), but in an Amish district where women outnumber men three to one, marriage is an unlikely prospect for a girl with bad legs.
Ben Eicher just arrived in Michigan from Pinecraft, Florida. When his most recent shenanigans proved too much for his “daed”‘s patience, Ben was sent to the Upper Peninsula to work in the lumber camp–and he’s neither proud of his behavior nor thrilled about his new home.
But when Ben meets Grace, the struggling young woman quickly piques his curiosity. Of course, the last thing Grace wants is another friendship with a man who pities her. Tired of physical pain and romantic dead ends, Grace is ready to leave Badger Creek for the muscle specialist in Ohio, even if it contradicts her father’s wishes . . . and Ben’s.
Meanwhile, two dangerous men have found their way into the district. It isn’t long before their unsavory plans ensnare Grace and Ben in a chase that will not only endanger their lives . . . but test their love.

What I liked: Both Ben and Grace are dealing with things in their life that people can relate to on some level. Ben fights the battle of following the rules and dealing with the consequences when he gets caught. Grace is dealing with some serious health issues which leaves her fearing she will never have a normal life. Grace wants nothing to do with Ben at first and Ben can’t help but find himself drawn to her. Both characters had to learn to have faith in God and each other. I also thought the ending was unique and had a more realistic feel.

What I didn’t like: I liked the overall plot but this story was somewhat slow at times. There was some good suspense and action in this book yet it lacked the excitement you would expect. I also thought the chemistry between Ben and Grace was not that great.

     I enjoyed this book but it just did not keep me as enticed as the first book of the series. Not a bad read overall. This book can easily be read as a stand alone.

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DISCLOSURE: I was provided a free copy of this ebook from the publisher through NetGalley to review it. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own.

Posted in 2015 Reviews, 4 Stars, Amish Fiction, NetGalley, Ruth Reid, The Amish Wonders, Thomas Nelson | Leave a comment