Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Can't Wait Wednesday: When We Had Wings by Ariel Lawhon, Kristina McMorris, & Susan Meissner

Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings that spotlights and discusses the books we're excited about that we've yet to read. Generally, they're books that are yet to be released. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

This week I'm featuring When We Had Wings by Ariel Lawhon, Kristina McMorris, & Susan Meissner releasing October 18.

About the Book
From three bestselling authors comes an interwoven tale about a trio of World War II nurses stationed in the South Pacific who wage their own battle for freedom and survival.

The Philippines, 1941. When U.S. Navy nurse Eleanor Lindstrom, U.S. Army nurse Penny Franklin, and Filipina nurse Lita Capel forge a friendship at the Army Navy Club in Manila, they believe they’re living a paradise assignment. All three are seeking a way to escape their pasts, but soon the beauty and promise of their surroundings give way to the heavy mantle of war.

Caught in the crosshairs of a fight between the U.S. military and the Imperial Japanese Army for control of the Philippine Islands, the nurses are forced to serve under combat conditions and, ultimately, endure captivity as the first female prisoners of the Second World War. As their resiliency is tested in the face of squalid living arrangements, food shortages, and the enemy’s blatant disregard for the articles of the Geneva Convention, the women strive to keep their hope— and their fellow inmates—alive, though not without great cost.

In this sweeping story based on the true experiences of nurses dubbed “the Angels of Bataan,” three women shift in and out of each other’s lives through the darkest days of the war, buoyed by their unwavering friendship and distant dreams of liberation.


What upcoming release are you eagerly awaiting?

Monday, October 3, 2022

Review: Dog Days of Summer (Gone to the Dogs #2) by Kathleen Y'Barbo

About the Book
Mishaps Abound as Second Chance Ranch Struggles to Get Its Start

Grab a lap dog to cuddle and relax into a fun small-town mystery as a new dog rescue project turns into a three-ring circus of calamities in book 2 of the Gone to the Dogs series.

Trina Potter, Nashville country music star, buys a ranch near her hometown in Brenham, Texas, to help her niece open a rescue facility for dogs. Her presence in town stirs up some old high school rivalries—and romance. Finding property to buy is a challenge, convincing her mother to move there with her is daunting, and navigating a string of strange accidents is perplexing. Sometimes Trina feels like she’s purchased her own three ring circus instead of a beautiful piece of land. But her first priority will be figuring out who wants Second Chance Ranch shut down before they even have the grand opening.


MY THOUGHTS

What a great followup to "Off the Chain". This can be read as a standalone, but I'd still recommend reading book one first because you'll be missing out on a wonderful story if you don't.

I love the town of Brenham and the great cast of characters. Trina was likable and, despite the fact that she's a famous country music star, relatable and down to earth. Wyatt was a total sweetheart. I couldn't help but fall for him. Mama Peach still had to be my favorite character, though. She's something else, lol!

The mystery was an intriguing one. There were a lot of pieces to it and I didn't figure out most of it until the very end. It definitely took some surprising turns.

This feel-good cozy mystery left a big smile on my face. It's sure to delight lovers of dogs and small town mysteries. I can't wait for the next book!

I received an advanced copy of this book via NetGalley and voluntarily reviewed it. All thoughts and comments are my honest opinion.

FOUR STARS

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Book Beginnings + Friday 56: The Aberration of Eden Pruitt (The Eden Pruitt #2) by K.E. Ganshert

Book Beginnings is a weekly meme hosted by Rose City Reader that asks you to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you're reading. Friday 56 is hosted by Freda's Voice and asks you to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your ereader and share a non-spoilery sentence or two. I'm also linking up with Carrie at Reading is My Superpower for First Line Friday.

This week I'm featuring The Aberration of Eden Pruitt (The Eden Pruitt #2) by K.E. Ganshert


About the Book
Eden Pruitt’s parents are alive. They are safe. But not Eden. She won’t be until they hunt down the high-stakes gambler known as Mordecai. Eager for redemption, Cassian Gray won’t rest until they succeed.

Together, they follow a trail of clues that thrusts them into a dark, dangerous, twisted reality. At its center stands an enemy far more powerful than they ever imagined.

Book Beginnings / First Line Friday
Eighteen-year-old Eden Pruitt walked toward a set of stairs that weren't hers, away from a father that wasn't hers either. At least not in the way she'd always thought.

Friday 56
Jack had taken over Dr. Norton's living space, spreading the contents from their files across the floor along with all the images that had been taken over the years.

What have you been reading lately?

Review: To Steal a Heart (The Bleeker Street Inquiry Agency #1) by Jen Turano

About the Book
After spending her childhood as a street thief, Gabriella Goodhue thought she'd put her past behind her until a fellow resident at her boardinghouse is unjustly accused of theft. Using her old skills to prove her friend's innocence, Gabriella unexpectedly encounters Nicholas Quinn, the man she once considered her best friend—until he abandoned her.

After being taken under the wing of a professor who introduced him into society and named him as his heir, Nicholas is living far removed from his childhood life of crime. As a favor to a friend, Nicholas agreed to help clear the name of an innocent woman, never imagining he'd be reunited with the girl he thought lost to him forever.

As Gabriella and Nicholas are thrown together into one intrigue after another, their childhood affection grows into more, but their newfound feelings are tested when truths about their past are revealed and danger follows their every step.


MY THOUGHTS

It's been way too long since I've read a Jen Turano book. I was excited to finally dive into To Steal a Heart. I love the New York Gilded Age setting and nobody does it quite like Turano!

The first chapter really set the stage and had me instantly captivated. We're introduced to a lot of characters and I was afraid I'd be overwhelmed by them all, but it didn't take long before I had them all straightened out.

Gabriella was such a strong and fierce young lady. She hadn't had the easiest life, but she took it all in stride and made the best of things. I loved that about her. Nicholas was great. The chemistry between him and Gabriella was off the charts. They were so good together. I think Daphne might've been my favorite character, though. She provided a ton of laughs and I'm eager to read her story. Eunice's too. She seems to have quite a few secrets that I'm very curious to figure out.

Needless to say, this was a fantastic historical romance that I wholeheartedly recommend.

FIVE STARS

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Can't Wait Wednesday: Within These Gilded Halls by Abigail Wilson

Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings that spotlights and discusses the books we're excited about that we've yet to read. Generally, they're books that are yet to be released. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

This week I'm featuring Within These Gilded Halls by Abigail Wilson releasing October 4.

About the Book
Hidden treasure and betrayal mingle with unexpected love within the walls of Avonthorpe Hall.

After studying art under Miss Drake, a renowned painter, Phoebe Radcliff is certain she can finally move beyond the childish mistake that’s kept her away from home. She is thrilled when Miss Drake employs her to complete a complicated ballroom renovation.

Everything changes, however, the moment Miss Drake is murdered. With her last breath she imparts the location of a clue to Phoebe. Can the biggest secret of Avonthorpe Hall be true—the rumored treasure real? Phoebe is tasked to finish her work in the ballroom by Miss Drake’s infuriatingly regimented yet all-too-handsome nephew, Lt. Graham Burke. Determined to fulfill the promise she made to her beloved teacher to find the treasure, Phoebe also works to uncover the truth about Miss Drake’s death—and she must do so before Lt. Burke leases the house.

But dark shadows line the gilded halls of Avonthorpe, and soon enough Phoebe realizes she’s not the only person who knows about the clues. What’s worse, she needs Lt. Burke’s help to stay ahead of whoever is hard on her heels. If only she weren’t so attracted to him.

Caught up in a deadly race for answers, Phoebe must find a way to breach the shroud of lies that surrounds every last resident in the house and, more importantly, face a past she’s been running away from for far too long.


What upcoming release are you eagerly awaiting?

Monday, September 26, 2022

Review: My Dear Miss Dupré (American Royalty #1) by Grace Hitchcock

About the Book
Willow Dupré never thought she would have to marry, but with her father's unexpected retirement from running the prosperous Dupré sugar refinery, plans changed. The shareholders are unwilling to allow a female to take over the company without a man at her side, so her parents devise a plan--find Willow a spokesman king in order for her to become queen of the empire.

Willow is presented with thirty potential suitors from the families of New York society's elite group called the Four Hundred. She has six months to court the group and is expected to eliminate men each month to narrow her beaus until she chooses one to marry, ending the competition with a wedding. Willow reluctantly agrees, knowing she must do what is best for the business. She doesn't expect to find anything other than a proxy . . . until she meets Cullen Dempsey, and she must discover for herself if his motives are pure.


MY THOUGHTS

This was so much fun! I've never been a fan of the TV shows the Bachelor and Bachelorette, but I really enjoyed this Gilded Age twist to the shows. I was hooked right from the start and couldn't get enough of it.

Willow has a tough decision to make. Some of New York's finest and most eligible men are vying for her hand in marriage. She has six months to make a decision. Who will she pick? I definitely had my favorite chosen pretty early on, but there were a couple of other guys who I really liked, too. I was on the edge of my seat wondering who she'd pick in the end.

This was a great historical romance that I'd definitely recommend. I'm so excited it's the first book in a series. I can't wait to pick up a copy of the sequel! 

FOUR STARS

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Book Beginnings + Friday 56: To Steal a Heart (The Bleeker Street Inquiry Agency #1) by Jen Turano

Book Beginnings is a weekly meme hosted by Rose City Reader that asks you to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you're reading. Friday 56 is hosted by Freda's Voice and asks you to grab a book (any book), turn to page 56 or 56% in your ereader and share a non-spoilery sentence or two. I'm also linking up with Carrie at Reading is My Superpower for First Line Friday.

This week I'm featuring To Steal a Heart (The Bleeker Street Inquiry Agency #1) by Jen Turano

About the Book
After spending her childhood as a street thief, Gabriella Goodhue thought she'd put her past behind her until a fellow resident at her boardinghouse is unjustly accused of theft. Using her old skills to prove her friend's innocence, Gabriella unexpectedly encounters Nicholas Quinn, the man she once considered her best friend—until he abandoned her.

After being taken under the wing of a professor who introduced him into society and named him as his heir, Nicholas is living far removed from his childhood life of crime. As a favor to a friend, Nicholas agreed to help clear the name of an innocent woman, never imagining he'd be reunited with the girl he thought lost to him forever.

As Gabriella and Nicholas are thrown together into one intrigue after another, their childhood affection grows into more, but their newfound feelings are tested when truths about their past are revealed and danger follows their every step.

Book Beginnings / First Line Friday
It was quickly becoming evident that she, Miss Gabriella Goodhue, might very well be arrested in the not-too-distant future, and all because she'd convinced herself that sneaking into a high-society costume ball would be a relatively easy feat, given her past life as a street thief.

Friday 56
Trepidation was swift when the poodle sitting beside Miss Langtry immediately curled its lips and set its beady eyes on Gabriella.

What have you been reading lately?