Friday, May 22, 2015

The Forgotten Princess of Elmetia by Rachel A. James

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Goodreads Summary
It is 616AD, and one fatal night the ancient Kingdom of Elmetia falls. Saxons kill the Elmetian King, and capture Princess Teagen. Teagen poses as a slave girl and works for the Saxons in the Kingdom of Deira, until she discovers her brother is alive. She finds a way to escape, and her path crosses with Ryce the Warrior.

Struggling with his past, and angry against the tyrant Saxon king, Ryce helps the princess in pursuit of her brother. But just as the connection between them intensifies, obstacles get in their way. The Saxon king now wants vengeance, and will stop at nothing to get it.

My Review
The Forgotten Princess of Elmetia was a captivating tale filled with strong characters and intrigue. The author’s writing style was perfect for the time period and flowed effortlessly, drawing me in from the very beginning.

The characters were interesting to read about and readers will not be able to dislike them. Teagan, while a princess at birth, was in hiding as a servant. Her strength, fortitude, and perseverance were inspiring and admirable character traits. Her determination to find her brother, and stay true to herself even when society’s views insist that she should act a certain way are something that we can all learn from, for Teagan will not be swayed. When she goes in search of her brother the action truly begins, and you will be turning pages at the speed of light to find out what happens around every corner. As she gains the aid of Ryce and Sherwin, a palpable attractions arises, and trust me, you won’t be able to get enough of their fun and entertaining banter. Through all the pain and trial Teagan had witnessed and gone through, she remains strong in her faith in the Lord, relying on Him to see her through and guide her. Can she show Ryce and Sherwin the light too, or will stubborn Ryce insist on holding on to his guilt instead of allowing the Lord to wash it white as snow?

Ryce and Teagan were a fantastic hero/heroine team and my only disappointment was that the story ended. The journey they go in is full of action, sweet romance, entertaining banter, beautiful faith, and just altogether awesomeness! There were so many obstacles for each of them to overcome, and it doesn’t stop with the main characters because the secondary characters were just as well developed! This is one historical fiction tale that everyone needs to read! There is something for everyone!

For fear of spoiling something, I must stop now, but go read The Forgotten Princess of Elmetia!

I received a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. This in no way affected my opinions, and all thoughts and opinions are solely my own.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Fools Rush In by Janice Thompson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Goodreads Summary
Bella Rossi may be nearing thirty, but her life is just starting to get interesting. When her Italian-turned-Texan parents hand over the family wedding planning business, Bella is determined not to let them down. She quickly books a "Boot Scoot'n" wedding that would make any Texan proud. There's only one catch - she's a country music numbskull because her family only listens to Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Where will she find a DJ on such short notice who knows his Alan Jackson from his Keith Urban?
When a misunderstanding leads her to the DJ (and man) of her dreams, things start falling into place. But with a family like hers, nothing is guaranteed. Can the perfect Texan wedding survive a pizza-making uncle with mob ties, an aunt who is a lawsuit waiting to happen, and a massive delivery of 80 cowboy boots? And will Bella ever get to plan her own wedding?

My Review
Fools Rush In was such a fun and entertaining read, perfect for hot summer days relaxing outside! I laughed so hard throughout the entire book. The entire cast of characters were fantastic, I loved getting to know them and all of their family dynamics and quirks. I can't wait to read more about all of them in the sequels.

When the Italian and countryfied families started to merge, I was impressed at the faith and diversity between both families. From the Rossi's to the Neeley's, to Bella's best friend, they all found their way into my bookish heart with likeable personalities. Dwayne was such a nice guy, so sweet - I couldn't get enough of their conversations!

I really enjoyed getting inside of Bella's head. She had such a unique, fun, and witty voice that just made reading this book so much fun. I also loved watching Bella learn that their families really weren't that different after all. Her faith journey was beautiful and inspiring, and I'm taking the lessons she learned to heart - trusting the Lord with all of my worries, and just letting his plan play out the way he wants it to.

From the pizza shop to the wedding planning, there is lots of stuff going on, and not a minute to lose! Get your cowboy/cowgirl on, this is one cast of characters that you really want to get to know! Be forewarned that you will laugh a lot, so don't read this in any awkwardly quiet public places...or do, so you can convince everyone to read the book too! 

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

I'm Back!

I guess I kind of went on an unexpected, unannounced, hiatus for about 10 days, but really longer because my posting was so sporadic for about a week before. If you missed, well fear no longer, because I am back and ready for some fun!

Why the unexpected hiatus? Well, first of all I was super busy with my last couple weeks of high school and stress over a speech I had to give for a scholarship I received. All of that stress put me in a blogging slump, and I just couldn't bring myself to blog at all. I wondered if blogging was even worth all the stress, when my Netgalley review books won't open up (is there anything I can do about that, or are they just gone?). On top of that, my computer won't connect to the internet, so I have to use my mom's and that was kind of irritating because I miss my laptop where I don't have to log into everything every single time, and I don't want her to blame me if her computer gets messed up too.

But now, it's summer! I am officially done with high school (pretty much - our last day was last Thursday, but graduation is this Friday, and unfortunately I have to speak). I missed blogging, and I'm ready to come back! I did do some reading, so I'll have some reviews and blog tours up soon, and I'll get back to doing Top Ten Tuesday posts, discussions, and more! I'm excited to be back to blogging where I can release my voice and share my love of books! 

Now I have some "spring cleaning" to do - reviews to link to my review archive, organizing my blog planner, etc. Really I just need to get back on track when it comes to blogging! So, wish me luck!

I also plan to cut back on the number of times I post weekly. It just won't be possible for me to post every day when I'm in College, so I am going to schedule less for a week and schedule farther ahead.

Have you ever gone through a blogging slump? How did you get through it? Can I ever read those Netgalley review books or do I have to go buy them when they come out?

Monday, May 18, 2015

Cover Reveal: A Wish Made of Glass by Ashlee Willis

Today, I am thrilled to present you with the cover reveal of Ashlee Willis's A Wish Made of Glass! 

Displaying AWishMadeofGlassFinal.jpgBLURB:
Deep in a forest glade, the fey folk dance with Isidore, a young human child. Their kinship is the very fabric of her childhood. When her mother dies and her world darkens with sorrow, Isidore finds her belief in the fey folk wavering.
The love of her new step-sister, Blessing, proves an unexpected gift in her time of need. Yet even as their friendship blooms, Isidore begins to see that Blessing is everything she herself has always wanted to be, but is not. Jealousy grips Isidore as she watches this beautiful new sister steal away all she holds dear.
Driven to desperation, Isidore turns to the fey folk once more. She has only one wish to claim from them, one chance to make things right. But she must tread carefully. For wishes, like hearts, are easily broken. And obtaining the one thing she desires could mean destroying the one thing she truly needs.
Displaying AshleeWillisAuthorPic.jpg
Ashlee Willis is the author of fantasy for young adults. She lives in the heart of Missouri with her husband and young son. While most of her days are balanced between writing, reading and being a stay-at-home mom, she also finds time to enjoy forest rambles, photography, and playing the piano.
~ ~ ~
Isn't it gorgeous?! I love the contrast between the colors, and the design is beautiful. And that synopsis? Oh, doesn't it just make you want to dive right in? I know I want to! It will be hard to wait until this summer to read it.

What are your thoughts? Do you love the cover as much as I do?

Friday, May 8, 2015

Blog Tour: A Love Like Ours by Becky Wade

Fall in love with Becky Wade's new book, A Love Like Ours, a story of healing, romance, and cowboys. A glimmer of the hope Jake thought he’d lost returns when Lyndie lands back in Texas, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend?

To celebrate the release of her new book, Becky is giving away a $100 cash card and a book-inspired prize pack!


One grand prize winner will receive:

love like ours - prize pack 
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on May 26th. Winner will be announced May 27th on Becky's site.

    About the book:
  • A $100 cash card
  • A copy of A Love Like Ours
  • A copy of the Secretariat DVD
  • A scarf
  • A dog-tag/cross keychain
  • A pair of earrings
  • A Scarf
  • A Texas-shaped cutting board
  • A Jake Porter mug
    A Love Like Ours (Bethany House, May 2015)
    • Former Marine Jake Porter has far deeper scars than the one that marks his face. He struggles with symptoms of PTSD, lives a solitary life, and avoids relationships.

      When Lyndie James, Jake's childhood best friend, lands back in Holley, Texas, Jake cautiously hires her to exercise his Thoroughbreds. Lyndie is tender-hearted, fiercely determined, and afraid of nothing, just like she was as a child. Jake pairs her with Silver Leaf, a horse full of promise but lacking in results, hoping she can solve the mystery of the stallion's reluctance to run.

      Though Jake and Lyndie have grown into very different adults, the bond that existed during their childhood still ties them together. Against Jake's will, Lyndie's sparkling, optimistic personality begins to tear down the walls he's built around his heart. A glimmer of the hope he'd thought he'd lost returns, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend?

      Purchase a copy:

      About the author:
      Becky Wade is a native of California who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and moved to Dallas. She published historical romances for the general market, took time off to raise her children, then felt God nudging her to pursue contemporary Christian fiction. Becky's work has been a finalist for both a RITA and an INSPY Award.

      Find Becky online: website, Facebook, Twitter

    My Review
    5 Stars
    I honestly do not have the right words to express my love for this book. I really enjoyed the first two books in this series, and had high hopes for A Love Like Ours, and it definitely did not disappoint! My curiosity about the gruff, statuesque Jake couldn't have been satisfied in a better way.
    I was drawn in from the very first page, and loved how the book started out with a flashback of Jake and Lyndie as childhood best friends, giving us their personality and friendship background as well as Lyndie's move that broke them apart. 
    I've also always had a soft spot for horses, and the horses portrayed in this book, as well as both main characters love for them burrowed it's way into my heart in lightning speed. I especially fell in love with Silver Leaf, who I met in Undeniably Yours (book 1). Lyndie's sister, Mollie, was such a shining light in A Love Like Ours as well, full of inspiration and hope. I really loved how that aspect was portrayed, with Lyndie's personality and her whole family - they were so supportive, and faithful through all of the trial and pain. Mollie's circumstances really spoke to me, and were instrumental to Jake's 360 degree turn.
    I really liked both main characters. Lyndie was so full of compassion, kindness, capability, determination, strength, and had a special touch with horses, her sister, and well... Jake. She was a really good friend. I loved hearing about her stories and art, and her love for animals (I loved her dogs names - Empress Felicity and Gentleman Tobias!). I pretty much just loved every minute spent in her head. Jake was full of hidden emotions. He was so stoic and the epitome of strength, even though he was hurt, bruised, and battered on the inside. His love of horses and protective nature toward Lyndie showed his soft, vulnerable side, and will make any girl fall for him. There were flashbacks showing the "full story" behind Jake's PTSD, and I loved every aspect of how his, and Lyndie's journey, and how perfect they were for each other! It was so sweet and made me smile. Oh the unexpected banter (I should have known - Becky Wade is a pro at it)!
    I also really appreciated and enjoyed seeing more of Amber and her son Jayden! She really made a complete turn around as well, and I was so proud of her. (But I can't say any more than that!)
    Be forewarned that A Love Like Ours is an emotional roller coaster - a really amazing and beautiful one! I laughed, smiled, cried, and felt every single emotion imaginable plus ten more! This book, and its characters now have an indefinite place in my heart.
    There are so many more things that I loved about this book, and I could talk about it all day long, but I really think that you NEED TO READ IT FOR YOURSELF!  You won't regret it - I promise - but I will take full responsibility if I am somehow wrong (but that won't be necessary)! Oh, I want to go reread this one immediately!
      I received a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion, and all thoughts and opinions are solely my own.

    Friday, May 1, 2015

    Silenced by Dani Pettrey

    My rating: 5 of 5 stars
    Goodreads Summary
    Romantic Suspense's Rising Star Returns with an Electric New Thriller

    A relaxing day of rock climbing takes a disturbing turn when Kayden McKenna's route leads her face to face with a dead climber. Is it a terrible accident or something sinister? When the case is handed to the overburdened sheriff, he turns to Jake Westin. With Jake's past now revealed, he's ready to use his talent for investigation again--but he could never prepare for where the case will take him.

    Kayden and Jake soon realize that the death was no accident. And worse, it seems the killer is on to them. When strange things begin happening in Yancey, Jake is terrified that once again his world may put someone he loves in danger. But the truth is far worse than he could ever imagine.

    My Review
    I'm going to try to keep this short in order to avoid spoiling any of Dani Pettrey's genius!

    I love the entire Alaskan Courage series! I've read the other four so this is the last one for me, and I don't think I've ever been so extremely curious to read a characters story as I was to read Kayden and Jake's, and Silenced did not disappoint!

    What I love most about this book and this series is the faith messages and the family dynamics. It is so beautiful to watch these characters grow, and trust in the Savior. I love how Dani Pettrey uses multiple perspectives so we get to see into previous and future main characters as well.

    The mystery was very intriguing, and intense - it takes a lot to scare strong Kayden so I had a feeling it would be. I loved seeing inside Kayden's hard exterior into her inner emotions, and Jake's past...I was so curious! I can't say anymore, just go read it!

    Plus readers get to experience more of Alaska through Kayden and Reef's rock climbing!

    I can tell that there is plenty of action, romance, faith, family, Alaskan adventure, and more! I promise you won't regret reading Silenced, but I do recommend you read books 1-3 first though you obviously don't HAVE to read them in order - I didn't (kind of my Library's fault because they weren't available in order).

    Thursday, April 30, 2015

    A Separate Peace by John Knowles

    My rating: 2 of 5 stars
    Goodreads Summary
    An American classic and great bestseller for over thirty years, A Separate Peace is timeless in its description of adolescence during a period when the entire country was losing its innocence to the second world war.

    Set at a boys boarding school in New England during the early years of World War II, A Separate Peace is a harrowing and luminous parable of the dark side of adolescence. Gene is a lonely, introverted intellectual. Phineas is a handsome, taunting, daredevil athlete. What happens between the two friends one summer, like the war itself, banishes the innocence of these boys and their world.

    A bestseller for more than thirty years, A Separate Peace is John Knowles crowning achievement and an undisputed American classic.

    My Review
    First of all, I was forced to read this book for school, and honestly if it had been my choice and I had, for some weird unknown reason, started reading it I wouldn't have finished it.

    To be fair, it wasn't terrible. Looking at A Separate Peace from a literary/writing perspective, it's a well written book and I see why it's a classic. Life at the Devon school for boys is a microcosm for the world at war, and there are many literary aspects to it that were kind of genius.

    Looking at it from a readers point of view - I kind of hated it. I didn't like the main character/narrator Gene at all. He was academic, calculating, and kind of dark. He looked for the worst in people. Finny was sporty, optimistic, sunny, and naive. He loved sports, where everyone won. He was charismatic and made up rules as he went easily getting everyone else, even teachers, to follow him.

    But I didn't like or understand the main character at all. I get that his thoughts and actions show the darker side of humanity, obviously, but I just can't even. I don't know even know how to write about my feelings for this book, so I'm going to leave it at that. 

    Wednesday, April 29, 2015

    Aimee and the Heartthrob by Ophelia London

    Aimee and the HeartthrobAimee and the Heartthrob by Ophelia London
    My rating: 2 of 5 stars
    Goodreads Summary
    He never noticed her before, but now she’s all he can see…

    Miles Carlisle is every teen girl’s fantasy. His rugged good looks and exotic British accent have helped catapult his boy band, Seconds to Juliet, to super-stardom. But after two disastrous and very public breakups, Miles isn’t interested in dating just any girl; he wants The One. And the only girl he’s interested in is not only his best friend’s little sister―and off-limits―but won’t even give him the time of day…

    As a kid, Aimee Bingham had a huge thing for Miles…until he made fun of her for always tagging along. Now that she’s outgrown both him and her pigtails. the prospect of spending two weeks on tour with the childhood crush who broke her heart isn’t exactly enticing. Except now Miles seems interested. Very interested. And no matter how hard Aimee tries to resist him, her crush is definitely making a comeback.

    But everyone knows that falling for a heartthrob is a backstage pass to heartbreak…

    My Review
    To be honest I have mixed feelings about this book. I really liked the basic essence of the story - friend from past turns boy band heartthrob, girl had crush before he was famous, meet again and sparks happen, but they both have their issues and have to work out their relationship, and an overprotective big brother.

    I thought they were a really adorable couple, and I loved the wit and humor displayed between them.

    Some things really bothered me, though. First of all the text speak was kind of hard to get through at times. I mean, I am eighteen, and I do text, but it just bugged me a little. Most of all, the amount of kissing and making out (I don't normally use that term, but in this case I have to), was a little extreme. They didn't go past that, but between the language in some of their thoughts I was afraid they were going to. They were way to focused on the others looks. I just have really liked to see more talking and less mass kissing, it's like after kissing the first time that was almost the only thing they wanted to do. I just didn't appreciate some of the thoughts processes and such.

    If it wasn't for the really sweet moments such as writing songs and going on picnics, and mainly being curious about the end (which I really liked, by the way), I might have put the book down. It did take me a while to get through this one, I just wasn't in a huge hurry to pick it back up instead of watching tv, but maybe that's because I was stressed.

    I enjoyed that there were character pov switches, and the sweet romance. I just found some things weren't really my style.

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion, and all thoughts and opinions are solely my own.

    View all my reviews

    Tuesday, April 28, 2015

    Life Updates

    This is what I categorize my wandering whims under! My mind may be wanting to write about life, blogging, music, movies, or anything under the sun, and if it doesn't fit into one of my other features then, well, here it will goes!

    Today, I think I'm just going to spew out current thoughts and what I've been up to lately.

    ~ ~ ~ ~
    Let's start with what I'm excited about! - I'm going to Costa Rica on a mission this summer with a group from my Church! I went to Romania last year, and I'm so excited to follow God's plan for me and show His love to others!

    I'm having a more positive attitude - I don't know why, but a couple of weeks ago I was just kind of down. I was really stressed and irritable, and that made me feel terrible because I like to be in a good mood. So, last week I returned to sunshiny attitude and I've been looking at the bright side of things! I've been trying to hand all of my worries to God, and trust in Him take care of everything for His good, guide me, and write His story on my heart!

    College Visit and Schedule - Friday I went to Admit Day at the College I will attend next fall. I will be living at home and commuting to the College I've always wanted to go to. Friday I got to meet a few of the teachers/leaders in the education department, and schedule my classes. I'm excited to be graduating high school soon, but I'm also extremely nervous. I can't wait to see what God has in store for me with this next life step. (My classes - English 1108, History, Algebra, Intro to education, Intro to Technology).

    Studying - I have a College Spanish final this week, and my AP Gov teacher has been giving a ton of quiz/tests, to prep us for the AP exam.

    "Friends" - I'm at a weird place regarding friends right now. The people I thought were my friends aren't really true friends - definitely not like the ones I read about in books. I haven't had a best friend since 8th grade. My "friends" that have been my friends in the past are the ones I eat lunch with and I tune them and their conversations out more than I listen to them, we seem to be becoming more and more different. They are always complaining, have negative attitudes, or talk about their boyfriends (and what they do ...) and I just don't want to hear it so I'll literally pull out my phone book, Nook, or a physical book and completely tune them out. I think they get annoyed with me sometimes too, because I'm (in their words) naive and a goody two shoes. I'm not. I am a Christian, and if I don't want to hear and participate in certain conversations and activities than I am not going to - I'm stronger than participating in a conversation I want no part in. I hardly ever talk, and sometimes it's really frustrating because what if I never have a best friend other than God and my family?

    Friends - My College English class is full of people that I am semi friends with, and I feel like they are more true friends than my "friends." I feel like they know more about me and understand more way better than my "friends" ever did. I talk to them and laugh with them way more! To be honest they are the better friends!

    Reading - I haven't had as much time to read, therefore I'm not reading as fast. Sometimes I just don't even feel like reading.

    TV - I've said before that I've been watching a lot more TV lately. I'm so sad that Scorpion and Good Witch just ended their 1st seasons:( I also think that I'm caught up or almost caught up with the current season of NCIS, but it would be so nice if I could watch the first 11 seasons. 

    Stress - As one of the top ten of my graduating class, I have to write a speech to give at graduation. I have tests, babysitting, blogging, etc.

    *I'm sorry, I know I rambled, but I needed to get all of this out! I'm also not proofreading this, so excuse all of my mistakes, please. (Just so you know, I normally do proofread, lol)

    What about you? Where are you at in life right now?

    Monday, April 27, 2015

    The Truth About Jack by Jody Gehrman

    The Truth About JackThe Truth About Jack by Jody Gehrman
    My rating: 4 of 5 stars

    Goodreads Summary
    Dakota McCloud has just been accepted into a prestigious art school. Soon she'll leave behind the artists' colony where she grew up―hippie dad, tofu since birth, yurt―and join her boyfriend and best friend on the East Coast. It was the plan…until Dakota finds out her boyfriend and best friend hooked up behind her back.

    Hurt and viciously betrayed, Dakota pours out her heart on a piece of paper, places it in a bottle, and hurls it into the ocean. But it doesn't quite go where she expects…

    Jack Sauvage finds the bottle washed up on the shore and responds to Dakota's letter. Except what if his straight-laced life doesn’t jive with the free-spirited girl he’s only seen from afar? As Jack creates a persona he believes she’ll love, they slowly fall for each other with each new letter. Now Jack is trying to find a way to make this delicate, on-paper romance happen in real life…without revealing his deception.

    My Review
    The Truth About Jack was a really unique book, and the writing style really worked for me. I loved the setting of the artist's colony, the cafe, and the beach. I enjoyed getting to know Dakota and Jack and seeing them grow and discover what they really want and stand up for themselves - something I seem to never get enough of, and learn something from every time. I loved the artsy and musical aspects and how they understood each other so well.

    I loved the conversations between Jack and Dakota, and the fact they TALKED and had REAL CONVERSATIONS instead of spending an obscene amount of time kissing like happens in so many YA books. They were so realistic, earnest, sweet, and perfect! I loved the fact that they came from such different backgrounds yet were still perfect for each other, and I really appreciated that their differing backgrounds wasn't to huge of an issue. The way he knew her and wanted so badly to talk to her, but was afraid to was adorable, and I thought it was nice how she got to know him as both Jack and the guy she wrote letters to (normally has the potential to be really cliche, but it really worked)!

    While I am normally all about admitting the truth immediately, and I probably would have found this annoying and/or cliche, I can't really blame Jack for not telling her right away in this circumstance. I mean we girls do tend to take things to the extreme sometimes, and we may not always understand the meaning guys are attempting to convey (don't shoot me for pointing out he obvious, it was kind of hard to admit). Or maybe guys just aren't very good at explaining things - maybe that ability evaporated with memory and hearing?

    I must say that I really loved the language and word choice. I really learned some new vocab words, and yes I plan to use them!

    This was a semi light novel that was nowhere near fluff. There was a lot of beautiful depth that I wasn't expecting, and while some of the circumstances could have been cliche, the author somehow seemed to avoid all of them, and speak to me, making this a YA novel that I won't soon forget.

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. This in no way affected my opinions, and all thoughts and opinions are solely my own.

    View all my reviews

    Friday, April 24, 2015

    Shattered by Dani Pettrey

    Shattered (Alaskan Courage, #2)
    Goodreads Summary
    5 Stars
    A Thrilling New Romantic Suspense from the Genre's Newest Star
    Piper McKenna couldn't be more thrilled that her prodigal brother, Reef, has returned to Yancey, Alaska, after five years. But her happiness is short-lived when Reef appears at her house covered in blood. A fellow snowboarder has been killed--but despite the evidence, Reef swears he's innocent. And Piper believes him.
    Deputy Landon Grainger loves the McKennas like family, but he's also sworn to find the truth. Piper is frustrated with his need for facts over faith, but he knows those closest to you have the power to deceive you the most. With his sheriff pushing for a quick conviction, some unexpected leads complicate the investigation, and pursuing the truth may mean risking Landon's career.

    With Piper waging her own search, the two head deep into Canada's rugged backcountry--and unexpected complications. Not only does their long friendship seem to be turning into something more, but this dangerous case is becoming deadlier with each step.

    My Review
    I talked yesterday about feeling repetitive in my reviews, so here is my first more “unique” review!

    I loved everything about Shattered! I loved the intriguing mystery and the family loyalty. I loved the characters, and loved spending more time with the McKenna family!

    I made word collages of the setting and characters of Shattered. These are words that describe the setting/character, what they liked, what I liked about them, what they "learned/struggled with/came to realize!"

    I hope you enjoyed this review style, it's not as detailed, but I think it got most of my points across! I loved this book so much, and I highly recommend it!

    Thursday, April 23, 2015

    Broken Records - Switch it Up!

    This is what I categorize my wandering whims under! My mind may be wanting to write about life, blogging, music, movies, or anything under the sun, and if it doesn't fit into one of my other features then, well, here it will goes!
    ~ ~ ~ ~
    Repetitive Reviewing
    (keep in mind I wrote this Monday)
    I’ve been feeling, especially lately, like I’m being extremely repetitive with my reviews. I feel like I’m always liking the same things about a book, and say how I feel about books in the same way every. single. time. Sure, I’m still going to write reviews like I normally do, probably often, but I’d like to start switching it up a little every now and then.

    I want this to be fun and want reading my reviews to be interesting! I don't want my blog to feel like a broken record where I'm basically on repeat but changing names, etc.; I want to be creative!

    I will most likely start doing a more "unique" review for the books that I read for fun, and use my normal review style for those I'm asked to review because I feel like that's better to put on Goodreads and Amazon, but I might switch things up a little then too! You'll just have to wait and see!

    Some ideas I have for switching things up include letters to the characters of the book or recommending to a friend, poems, casts, collages (online or homemade), guessing games, quizes, and more!

    Have you ever felt this way when reviewing? Any ideas or tips that your willing to share?

    Wednesday, April 22, 2015

    Week of Wonder

    Week of Wonder is what I call my Weekly Wrap-up. I will link up everything that I did on my blog this week - books I read, books I reviewed, what challenges I've added to, what I'm currently reading, all my other posts, etc. I will also let you know about any upcoming events that are coming up on my blog.

    Yes, I know this is way late, and that I skipped the week before last.

    Oh my goodness, I have been so busy. I also haven't had any time to write any posts or reviews. I've been kind of stressed with school, high school graduation, I have to write a speech (and I'm not a fan of the topic). I have a terrible case of senioritis (yes it is totally legit). I've been in a TV watching mood, watching a lot of NCIS, and I've been reading some but I just want to read, and haven't felt like writing the reviews. I feel kind of bad because they are books that I really enjoyed. Maybe I've kind of been in a blogging slump. Within the last week I've seriously thought about stopping blogging, but after getting back on and writing this I know I'm not going to. I love sharing my love of books with you guys, I love reading, and I love connecting with this bookish community. My posts are going to be more sporadic for a while though considering my business and mood. I also have absolutely no posts scheduled and ready... but I might work on that today? (It's senior skip day at my school and I have days to miss so why not?)
    Now that I'm done with that...

    Royal Date by Sariah Wilson
    The Captive Imposter by Dawn Crandall (Blog Tour)

    Other Posts
    Waiting on Wednesday: Waking Beauty
    Robin's Reward by June McCrary Jacobs (Blog Tour)

    What was your week like?

    Tuesday, April 21, 2015

    Top Ten Favorite Authors

      Top Ten Tuesday is a fun meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, where we pick the top ten things for the topic of the week.  I really enjoy writing these posts, because I love lists, and this is a great way to look back at books I've read and toward the books I want to read!
    Topic: Top Ten Favorite Authors

    Lisa T. Bergren
    Serena Chase
    Melanie Dickerson
    Desiree Williams
    Dawn Crandall
    Dani Pettrey
    Krista McGee
    Jenny B. Jones
    Ally Carter
    Becky Wade
    Marissa Meyer
    Julianne Donaldson
    L.M. Montgomery
    Anne Osterlund

    I'm sure I'm forgetting some, but I love these authors because of their amazingly fantastical books!

    Who are you favorite authors?

    Monday, April 20, 2015

    Blog Tour: Robin's Reward by June McCrary Jacobs

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    Today I'm delighted to introduce to you Robin's Reward by June McCrary Jacobs!
    Book Blurb
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    Bonita Creek’s librarian Robin Bennett is heartbroken after being abandoned by her husband, Thomas. The mysterious and handsome Jeff Clarke arrives unexpectedly and touches Robin’s life with his wit and warmth. Then, without warning, Jeff’s harsh words and abrasive actions scare her off, and Robin’s hope of finding true love withers again.

    Just when it seems Robin and Jeff might have a future, Susan Stinson, whose cruel taunting has plagued Robin since they met as young teens, decides Jeff should be hers, not Robin’s. Susan’s anger and jealousy escalate dangerously. Her vindictiveness threatens the foundation of Jeff and Robin’s young relationship.
    Robin’s journey through the peaks and valleys of her life meanders along the twists and turns of new challenges. Is a relationship which began with both parties harboring secrets destined to survive? Can they move past their troubles and the obstacles in their path to find love and happiness together? When their pasts rear their ugly heads, Jeff and Robin must use their faith to remain strong and true. But will it be enough for them to embrace a life of love, trials, and blessings . . . together?
    "Robin's Reward, a sweet romance with great characters, is as refreshing as a walk among flowers."
    Author Rebecca H. Jamison, Sense & Sensibility: A Latter-Day Tale.

    Award-winning author, June McCrary Jacobs, was the winner of Cedar Fort Publishing’s 2013 Holiday Tale Contest for her debut novella, ‘A Holiday Miracle in Apple Blossom’. ‘Robin’s Reward’ is her first full-length novel, and is set in her favorite location in California—the Mendocino coastal region. This book is the first installment of the ‘Bonita Creek Trilogy’.
    June’s original sewing, quilting, and stitchery designs have been published in over one hundred books, magazines, and blogs in the past few years. When she’s not writing, reading, or sewing, June enjoys cooking, walking, and visiting art and history museums. She also enjoys touring historic homes and gardens and strolling around the many historic Gold Rush towns in the Sierra Nevada foothills. In the summertime you can find June at a variety of county fairs and the California State Fair admiring the sewing projects, quilts, and handiwork other inspired seamstresses, quilters, craftspeople, and artists have created.

    Displaying junemccraryjacobs_author1[1].jpgCONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR:
    June enjoys connecting with readers, authors, aspiring writers, bloggers, designers, sewers, quilters, and crafters. Please connect with June at the following platforms:

    Read an Excerpt

    June is giving away two signed copies of 'Robin's Reward' on her website. (United States residents only. No purchase necessary.) The Rafflecopter contest will end on May 31st, and June would like to invite readers to enter for a chance to win one of these paperbacks. Here's the link

    Thursday, April 16, 2015

    Blog Tour: The Captive Imposter by Dawn Crandall

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    I’m so excited to share The Captive Imposter by Dawn Crandall with all you book lovers today! As many of you know, I loved Dawn Crandall’s first two books in the Everstone Chronicles (The Hesitant Heiress and The Bound Heart , and this one definitely did not disappoint!

    The Captive Imposter (The Everstone Chronicles, #3)The Captive Imposter by Dawn Crandall
    My rating: 5 of 5 stars
    Goodreads Summary
    Sent away for protection, hotel heiress Estella Everstone finds herself living undercover as a lady’s companion named Elle Stoneburner at one of her father’s opulent hotels in the mountains of Maine—the one she'd always loved best and always hoped to own one day, Everston. The one thing she doesn't like about the situation is that her ex-fiancĂ© is in the area and is set on marrying someone else. Reeling from her feelings of being unwanted and unworthy, Estella reluctantly forms a friendship with the gruff manager of Everston, Dexter Blakeley, who seems to have something against wealthy young socialites with too much money, although they are just the kind of people Everston caters to.

    When Estella finds herself in need of help, Dexter comes to the rescue with an offer she can't refuse. She sees no other choice aside from going back home to her family and accepts the position as companion to his sister. Throughout her interactions with Dexter, she can't deny the pull that's evidenced between them every time he comes near. Estella realizes that while she's been hiding behind a false name and identity, she’s never been freer to be herself than when she's with Dexter Blakeley. But will he still love her when he finds out she's Estella Everstone? She's not entirely sure.

    Drop by author Dawn Crandall’s blog or Facebook page to check out all the posts and giveaways going on throughout the next few weeks! There will be lots of prizes and giveaways!

    My Review
    I have been impatiently waiting to finally get to read Estella Everstone’s story, and what an intriguing one it turned out to be! Dawn Crandall definitely has a knack for creating likeable characters, inspiring messages, and a mixture of everything that culminates to make a perfectly captivating story.

    As the daughter of a wealthy hotel owner, and at the top of the social circles, Estella Everstone struggled with feelings of being unwanted, unworthy, and invisible. People never saw her for who she truly was, and only wanted to befriend her for her status, until Dexter Blakely that is. He sees the real her, know what she loves to do, sees inside her heart, yet he doesn’t know her true name, and that right there is the problem. Dexter Blakely is a man of God, but he wasn’t beyond holding a grudge that endangered the growing feelings between the,. Things were definitely complicated, they both had a lot to overcome - past wounds and insecurities. Can  God help love triumph over their trials?

    The setting was descriptive and so easy to picture in my mind. Estella’s pure love for Everston was clear, and I must admit that it found a way into my heart as well.

    I truly enjoyed the journey that Captive Imposter took me on. I loved both characters growth, renewed faith, trust in God, and love for each other. Their strength and kindness, and the way they tried to overcome Estella’s obstacles. The relationship between Dexter and Estella was so entertaining, and the moments they spent together were witty and so enjoyable to read. Definitely swoon worthy:) They left me smiling, and rooting for them the whole time! I appreciated how they truly got to know each other, and had such a mutual endearing regard for each other.

    The other characters were just as intriguing and fun to get to know. I enjoyed getting to know Roxy, and seeing what happened between Estella and her ex (I really disliked him at many points in this book), then there was Dexter’s mean spirited mother, Estella’s encouraging father, and so many more that I can’t name because that would take the fun out of meeting them for yourself.

    I loved every minute of this novel. Dawn Crandall clearly created two more characters that instantly wormed their way into my heart! There was suspense intertwined with the witty humor and romance, and a perfect balance of depth and light hearted fun! The messages were inspiring. You really need to read this beautiful series for yourself to get the full, captivating effect!

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion, and all thoughts and opinions are solely my own.

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    About the Author
    IMG_3368 (683x1024)A graduate of Taylor University with a degree in Christian Education, and a former bookseller at Barnes & Noble, Dawn Crandall didn’t begin writing until her husband found out about her long-buried dream of writing a book. Without a doubt about someday becoming traditionally published, he encouraged her to quit her job in 2010 in order to focus on writing her debut novel, The Hesitant Heiress. It didn’t take her long to realize that writing books was what she was made to do. Dawn is represented by Joyce Hart of Hartline Literary.

    Apart from writing books, Dawn is also a first-time mom to a precious little boy (born March 2014) and also serves with her husband in a pre-marriage mentor program at their local church in Northeast Indiana.

    Dawn is a member of Romance Writers of America, American Christian Fiction Writers, secretary for the Indiana ACFW Chapter (Hoosier Ink), and associate member of the Great Lakes ACFW Chapter.

    The Everstone Chronicles is Dawn’s first series with Whitaker House. All three books composing the series were semifinalists in ACFW’s prestigious Genesis Writing Contest, the third book going on to become a finalist in 2013.

    So, without further ado, go check it out! Enjoy!