Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Hidden Currents by Christy Barritt



  • File Size: 4828 KB
  • Print Length: 259 pages
  • Publisher: River Heights (January 14, 2018)
  • Publication Date: January 14, 2018
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English

About the Book:

You can take the detective out of the investigation, but you can't take the investigator out of the detective.

A notorious gang puts a bounty on Detective Cady Matthews’s head after she takes down their leader, leaving her no choice but to hide until she can testify at trial. But her temporary home across the country on a remote North Carolina island isn’t as peaceful as she initially thinks. 

Living under the new identity of Cassidy Livingston, she struggles to keep her investigative skills tucked away, especially after a body washes ashore. When local police bungle the murder investigation, she can’t resist stepping in. But Cassidy is supposed to be keeping a low profile. One wrong move could lead to both her discovery and her demise.

Can she bring justice to the island . . . or will the hidden currents surrounding her pull her under for good?

My Thoughts:

Christy Barritt is back with a brand new series featuring a detective on the run after an undercover assignment puts her life in danger.  Going undercover with the notorious DH-7 gang, she ends up taking risks that could cost her everything--including her life.

She goes into hiding on secluded island Lantern Beach--so secluded that it takes an extremely long drive and two ferry trips to find the place.  No one will find new resident Cassidy Livingston, as long as she can keep her cover in place.

But when a dead body washes up on the beach and the local authorities are bungling the investigation, she finds a way to 'help' find the clues to solve the case.   Her investigation takes her to, um, interesting spots on the island...

...like a fruit stand built from an old van, a diner run by a chemistry expert with wacky food combos that are surprisingly good, and a bubble gum pink ice cream truck with a mysterious mind of its own.

Why won't the residents of the island buy ice cream from her truck?  Without the tourists, Cassidy wouldn't be able to make a living selling her frozen treats.  New neighbor and retired Navy SEAL Ty Chambers is interested in learning more about Cassidy...

...but she's not very open and revealing.  When he joins forces with her to find the perpetrator behind the body on the beach, can he learn more about Cassidy or will the Hidden Currents of her secrets take them both under?

Intense, witty, and difficult to figure out the perp before the story ends...that's what you'll find with a novel by Christy Barritt!

Hidden Currents gets four out of five stars from me!

Until the next page turns,

Deena


Thursday, February 1, 2018

Devotions for the Hungry Heart by Shellie Rushing Tomlinson



  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Shiloh Run Press (January 1, 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1683224329
  • ISBN-13: 978-1683224327

About the Book:

This simple little book of story-based devotions will change your world, one day at a time.

"Whether you have a healthy craving for more Jesus, or the barely discernible taste for a relationship with Him that seems beyond your reach, the glorious truth is that God put that hunger in your heart in the first place, and He is more willing to fan that flame than you or I could ever be."
--From the Introduction

Shellie Rushing Tomlinson, the Belle of All Things Southern, is back with a devotional guide for the Jesus-hungry heart. Grounded in scripture and offered in the author’s signature storytelling style, this devotional invites you to God's table for a continual feast. With six prominent themes including Sharing, Needing, Celebrating, Praying, Surrendering, and Being Intentional, you'll be challenged and encouraged to develop God-honoring traits in your spiritual life.

A delightful companion book to Tomlinson’s Hungry Is a Mighty Fine SauceDevotions for the Hungry Heart features a bonus full-color insert featuring more than a dozen mouthwatering recipes plus photos. You're guaranteed to find nourishment for your body as well as your spirit!

My Thoughts:

I absolutely love Shellie Rushing Tomlinson's wit and sense of humor, so I was excited to pick up a copy of "Devotions of the Hungry Heart".  May I just say the design and cover of this book is absolutely gorgeous!   In fact, this would be a wonderful gift for, say, Valentine's Day!

Each devotional reading is about two pages long, and packed with humor.  Shellie's got some wild stories to tell, and every one of them is true--which makes them even more entertaining.  If you're seeking a solid and personal relationship with God, this is the devotional for you.

I'm giving "Devotions for the Hungry Heart" four out of five stars.  And the tag line slays me every time I read it: Chasing Jesus Six Days From Sunday!  To that I say, you go, sister-girl!

Until the next page turns,

Deena

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

The Yielding by Tamara Leigh



  • Series: Age Of Faith
  • Paperback: 334 pages
  • Publisher: Tamara Leigh; 1 edition (November 12, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 194232605X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1942326052

About the Book:

SHE HAD KILLED A MAN. OR SO IT WAS SAID.

Convent-bound Lady Beatrix Wulfrith is determined to aid her sister in escaping marriage to their family’s enemy. Unaware of the sacrifice that awaits her, she leads their pursuers astray only to meet with an accident that forever alters her destiny and takes the life of a young knight whose brother vows he will not rest until the lady is brought to justice.

Lord Michael D’Arci is a warrior and womanizer whose foul mouth and impatience bode ill for all who trespass against him. Falsely accused of ravishment years earlier, he refuses to believe Lady Beatrix’s accusations against his deceased brother. However, when he finds himself at the mercy of that same woman who clings to her convictions and faith even when it threatens to prove her undoing, his quest for justice wavers.

My Thoughts:

I've never been a huge fan of historical fiction, but many of my best reader friends are head over heels for Tamara Leigh's "Age of Faith" series, so I took a chance and thoroughly enjoyed her first book, and eagerly cracked the cover of the second.

"The Yielding" focuses on Lady Beatrix, sister of the Baron Wulfrith we met in the previous book.  When the king orders her sister to marry a beast of a man, Beatrix joins the effort to help get her older sibling into hiding.

But along the way a tragedy befalls her and she stands falsely accused of a crime she can't remember.  When the fallen knight's brother demands justice and shows no mercy, only recovering her memory will save Lady Beatrix.

Packed with rich detail and an authentic medieval voice, Leigh has crafted another page turner.  Considering the recent campaign against sexual harassment and abuse in the workplace, "The Yielding" shines a bright spotlight on inequality within culture.

I adore Beatrix, and even though Lord Michael enters as a bully and a brute, he grew on me.  "The Yielding" is engaging and top notch historical fiction, and I am eager to dive in with the third novel.

I'm giving "The Yielding" four and a half stars, and I have a feeling it won't be long until Leigh reaches a full five star review from me!

Until the next page turns,

Deena


Friday, January 26, 2018

My Blogoversary

I just realized that yesterday, January 25th, 2018 marked my 11th year writing online reviews!  Wow, how crazy is that?

I began this blog in honor of my mom.  She passed away in August of 2006, and she was my book buddy.  I had no one to really discuss books with, and I missed her so much.

I noticed other blogs that shared reviews, and so I put my toe in the water, and here we are 11 years later.

I still miss my mom so very, very much.  But I know she'd get a kick out of this little blog and where it's taken me.

Just wanted to celebrate a bit--WOOT!  WOOT!

Until the next page turns (or the blog turns 12!),

Deena

The Unveiling by Tamara Leigh



  • Series: Age Of Faith (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 306 pages
  • Publisher: Tamara Leigh; 2 edition (July 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1942326033
  • ISBN-13: 978-1942326038

About the Book:

12th Century England. Two men vie for the throne: King Stephen the usurper, and young Duke Henry the rightful heir. Amid civil and private wars, alliances are forged, loyalties are betrayed, families are divided, and marriages are made.

For four years, Lady Annyn Bretanne has trained at arms with one end in mind—to avenge her brother’s murder as God has not deemed it worthy to do. Disguised as a squire, she sets off to exact revenge on a man known only by his surname, Wulfrith. But when she holds his fate in her hands, her will wavers and her heart whispers that her enemy may not be an enemy after all.

Baron Wulfrith, renowned trainer of knights, allows no women within his walls for the distraction they breed. What he never expects is that the impetuous young man sent to train under him is a woman who seeks his death—nor that her unveiling will test his faith and distract the warrior from his purpose.

My Thoughts:

I'm going to be completely honest with you, my reading friend.  So buckle up!

I discovered Tamara Leigh when I purchase a copy of "Stealing Adda" and from the first page I was hooked.  The I read "Perfecting Kate" and I cried through half of the book because I identified with the main character so much.  When "Splitting Harriet" release I laughed myself sick and began sharing Leigh's books with my reluctant reader daughter, who then fell in love with the books as well.

I continued with "Saving Grace", and was thrilled with Leigh's "Southern Discomfort" trilogy.  But then I found out she had returned to writing historical novels, and I was heartbroken.  It felt as if I'd lost a best friend.

Now, in my book reading circles, I have a lot of fellow book nerds, and several of them kept talking about this new historical series that was outstanding.  It had been a general market series, but author had come to faith and was rewriting them as cleaner stories.

Doing some research, it was my favorite Tamara Leigh!  But they were historical, and not just any historical, but medieval historical.  Blech!  I am NOT a fan of historical fiction (or Amish fiction, for that matter), so I was bummed in a big way.

But these friends of mine would get SO EXCITED when a new novel would release.  Just recently a very good reading friend--someone I consider a heart friend--went gaga over the 7th novel in Leigh's 'Age of Faith' series.  I asked her "Just how good are these books?" to which she replied "SOOOOOOO good!"

I found a copy offered as a free trial read, and downloaded it.

I'm so ashamed of myself.  How could I have abandoned Tamara Leigh when she returned to writing her historical fiction?  I knew she was a gifted writer, and I adored her stories, but I refused to go with her into the past and trying to read her historical fiction.

Well, I just finished "The Unveiling", and please allow me to tell you from the bottom of my book-lovin' heart--it was SOOOOOOOO good!  I've got the second book downloaded and ready, and now I'm over the moon because I have so many new books to look forward to!

(The upside of discovering an author after everyone else has raved about him or her is the huge list of books already out that you can now devour!)

So, whether you're like me and dislike historical fiction, or you're a huge geek for it, please, do not miss out on "The Unveiling"!  This was unlike any other story I've read.  The medieval elements read as authentic, and the bravery, and the sword-fighting, and the daggers, and the dresses....**swoon alert**.

And I do NOT swoon.

So get thee hence to your preferred seller of books and buy thy copy of "The Unveiling", because I vow on my master's dagger (I don't really have one, I'm just getting into character...kind of) that thou shalt be swooning and delighting amidst the pages of said tome.

In other words...

Four out of five stars (gotta allow room for the books to get better!)

Until the next page turns,

Deena


Wednesday, January 24, 2018

The Saturday Night Supper Club by Carla Laureano



  • File Size: 3040 KB
  • Print Length: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (February 6, 2018)
  • Publication Date: February 6, 2018
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English

About the Book:

Denver chef Rachel Bishop has accomplished everything she’s dreamed and some things she never dared hope, like winning a James Beard Award and heading up her own fine-dining restaurant. But when a targeted smear campaign causes her to be pushed out of the business by her partners, she vows to do whatever it takes to get her life back . . . even if that means joining forces with the man who inadvertently set the disaster in motion.

Essayist Alex Kanin never imagined his pointed editorial would go viral. Ironically, his attempt to highlight the pitfalls of online criticism has the opposite effect: it revives his own flagging career by destroying that of a perfect stranger. Plagued by guilt-fueled writer’s block, Alex vows to do whatever he can to repair the damage. He just doesn’t expect his interest in the beautiful chef to turn personal.

Alex agrees to help rebuild Rachel’s tarnished image by offering his connections and his home to host an exclusive pop-up dinner party targeted to Denver’s most influential citizens: the Saturday Night Supper Club. As they work together to make the project a success, Rachel begins to realize Alex is not the unfeeling opportunist she once thought he was, and that perhaps there’s life—and love—outside the pressure-cooker of her chosen career. But can she give up her lifelong goals without losing her identity as well?

My Thoughts:

I always love it when I expect one thing from a highly anticipated book and I come away with so much more. My little review won't be able to do justice, but I'm still going to try! 

"The Saturday Night Supper Club" has been on my must read list for months, and I was thrilled to get an advance copy to read (GoodReads giveaways are worth the effort!).

I knew the basics of the story. An award-winning chef gets tangled up in the controversy surrounding an article and review that go viral, and she ultimately loses all she's worked hard to achieve. 

Said article writer then reaches out in apology, and to make amends, he offers his help as she begins a new and exciting venture, called The Saturday Night Supper Club. It's all things food and a decent romantic tale.

But Carla Laureano's novel is about so much more. It's about being true to how we're made, investing in people with our gifts and talents. About taking risks and revealing the truth about ourselves, becoming vulnerable as we become transparent. 

It's about realistic and not so realistic dreams, and what we're both willing and required to do to arrive at those dreams fulfilled. And it's about a man and a woman who fall in toe-curling, squeal with delight, remember what it was like love.

And other things like that. Friendships, partnerships, and relationships. Trust me when I tell you that this is the novel Carla Laureano was BORN to write!  No one else could have crafted such an exquisite, muli-layered tale and made it feel so epic--like high fantasy without the fantasy.  She has created a world unto itself that is real and feels real--you could step into any scene and find yourself THERE--if such travel existed in fiction.

And wouldn't it be fun if it did??

The Saturday Night Supper Club is so, so good. I'm actually a bit upset with myself for devouring the story so quickly! Now, I'll be waiting forever for the next book to release! 

Because there simply must be another book!

Gold star review (highest you can receive from me)

Until the next page turns,

Deena

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Vanishing Point by Lisa Harris



  • Series: Nikki Boyd
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (November 7, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800728483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800728489

About the Book:

During Garrett Addison's first week on the job as a criminal investigator for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, his team is called out to a murder scene of a young girl. She's the third victim in a string of disappearances with one thing in common--a Polaroid photo of each victim left behind at the crime scene.

The FBI is pulled into the case to help, and Garrett finds himself working with Special Agent Jordan Lambert, the woman he once loved. When yet another girl dies--number six--Garrett blames himself and believes he doesn't have what it takes to be an agent. What he'll discover is that, while he may be done with the killer, the killer is not done with him--or Jordan.

Bestselling and award-winning author Lisa Harris unveils an unforgettable story of a case that has haunted the public and law enforcement for more than a decade. Fans of the Nikki Boyd Files will thrill to finally discover what actually happened to Nikki's sister, Sarah. New readers will become instant fans after devouring this chilling tale.

My Thoughts:

Lisa Harris is a talented author and her stories are packed with suspense and intrigue.  Her previous books in the Nikki Boyd series explored the loss of Nikki's younger sister Sarah.  Vanishing Point finally focuses on that cold case.

Vanishing Point has a different feel that the other books in the series, but not in a negative way.  New characters Jordan Lambert and Garrett Addison bring a new energy to the series, and both are haunted by the loss of the six young women killed by the killer.

Harris has a depth of knowledge about law enforcement that adds to the narrative.  The detail is, well, detailed.  But it doesn't bog down the story.  And while the characters are well developed and relatable, the story is more of a method driven book than a character driven book.

That could be the difference I sensed as I read.  Regardless, Vanishing Point is an excellent novel of suspense, and I look forward to more from Lisa Harris.  I received an advance copy from the publisher with no services promised in return.

Four out of five stars

Until the next page turns,

Deena
 

Just One More Published @ 2014 by Ipietoon