Where the Fire Falls by Karen Barnett

Summary:

Watercolorist Olivia Rutherford has shed her humble beginnings to fashion her image as an avant-garde artist to appeal to the region’s wealthy art-collectors. When she lands a lucrative contract painting illustrations of Yosemite National Park for a travel magazine, including its nightly one-of-a-kind Firefall event, she hopes the money will lift Olivia and her sisters out of poverty.

After false accusations cost him everything, former minister Clark Johnson has found purpose as a backcountry guide in this natural cathedral of granite and trees. Now he’s faced with the opportunity to become a National Parks Ranger, but is it his true calling?

As Clark opens Olivia’s eyes to the wonders of Yosemite, she discovers the people are as vital to the park’s story as its vistas–a revelation that may bring her charade to an end.

My Thoughts:

Another beautiful vintage cover from Karen Barnett in Where the Fire Falls! Karen’s writing is so descriptive that you can actually visualize walking through Yosemite. This book was another event filled adventure through the beautiful setting of a National Park. Again, after reading this book I really want to just pack up and go see Yosemite! Clark and his caring nature for his pack mules really added a smile to my face as I read this book. Clark and Olivia were both dealing with past hurts and had to work through those issues during this story. I had a hard time connecting with Olivia as a character. She lacked a lot of integrity in my opinion by hiding her identity and pretending to be something that she wasn’t, and that was hard for me to get past. I did not understand the attraction that Clark had to her for those reasons as well. All that said, the mystery element was exciting and I absolutely love all of the details and information about the places and things within Yosemite.

To purchase a copy of Where the Fire Falls or learn more about the Author visit the links below!

Amazon: Where the Fire Falls

http://www.karenbarnettbooks.com/

*I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

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A Most Noble Heir by Susan Anne Mason

Summary:

When stable hand Nolan Price learns from his dying mother that he is actually the son of the Earl of Stainsby, his plans for a future with kitchen maid Hannah Burnham are shattered. Once he is officially acknowledged as the earl’s heir, Nolan will be forbidden to marry beneath his station.

Unwilling to give up the girl he loves, he devises a plan to elope–believing that once their marriage is sanctioned by God, Lord Stainsby will be forced to accept their union. However, as Nolan struggles to learn the ways of the aristocracy, he finds himself caught between pleasing Hannah and living up to his father’s demanding expectations.

At every turn, forces work to keep the couple apart, and a solution to remain together seems further and further away. With Nolan’s new life pulling him irrevocably away from the woman he loves, it seems only a miracle will bring them back together.

My Thoughts:

I am always excited to discover a new to me Historical Romance Author. I am fairly certain I will never grow tired of reading Historical Romances. Or watching them on BBC! But, back to the book! First of all it is nice to see a gentleman on the cover of a book occasionally. I enjoyed that since most of the storyline really follows Nolan’s transition from stable hand to son of an Earl. I mistakenly thought that this book had a very straightforward plot and I had predicted most of the conflict and resolution before reading past the first several chapters. I was actually wrong. I was in for several surprises. I really enjoy when a book is able to surprise me with either a plot twist or an unexpected villain. That being said, I was not sure how the story would progress and that kept me reading! The characters in this book seem to be tried and tested as they approach a life different than what they had planned, due to the discovery that Nolan is actually heir to Lord Stainsby. Trust, forgiveness and a recognition of who and what God has called us to do seem to be the main themes apparent in this book. A few plot twists and a bit of mystery keep the story moving at a good pace. Fans of Historical Romance will enjoy this latest book from Susan Anne Mason.

To purchase a copy of A Most Noble Heir or learn more about the author visit the links below!

Amazon: A Most Noble Heir

http://susanannemason.net/

*I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

Charming the Troublemaker by Pepper Basham

Summary:

When Dr. Alex Murdock is demoted to a university in rural Virginia, the last thing he expects to find is a future. But country charm never looked as good as it did on Rainey Mitchell.

Rainey Mitchell does not need a high-class flirt in her wounded world, but trouble and temptation wafts off the new professor as strong as his sandalwood-scented cologne. When circumstances thrust them together to save her tutoring clinic, can the troublemaker find the hero inside and encourage the reticent Rainey to open her heart again?

“Rainey Mitchell is doing just fine. She has a great job helping children in need, her family is around her, she is mother to a fabulous little girl, and is getting over the betrayal of her ex-husband. Dr. Alex Murdock is not doing so well, as he is forced to work at a rural university, his life is full of secrets surrounding his family, and he has to start over in a new town. Luckily, Rainey, the daughter of his landlord, is there to get him settled. Rainey just wants to stay away from the new professor, who has the same charm as her ex. Unfortunately, they seem to need each other. Rainey needs his grant-writing ability to save her program, and Alex is terrible at the lecturing at which Rainey excels. The two must work together to fulfill their goals, but will they be able to do it? Rainey’s insecurities and Alex’s obsession with protecting his family could be their undoing. A well-written love story filled with suspense, mystery, and a loving family.”

My Thoughts:

This book has been on my “to be read” list ever since I finished A Twist of Faith, the first book in the Mitchell’s Crossroad series. Pepper Basham’s writing is everything I love in a book. Humor, sincerity, genuinely likable characters, great plots and romance are all balanced perfectly to create the most enjoyable story. Charming the Troublemaker had me hooked from the start. Alex is without a doubt, charming. His flirtatious nature and lighthearted demeanor really made his character one of my favorites. The chemistry between Alex and Rainy really brought this book to life. It was just fun and funny. Im not going to give any spoilers for this book, but there is a scene with a car, a cell phone, and a lot of mud that literally had me laughing out loud. I am convinced that Hallmark needs to snatch all of Pepper Basham’s books up and make them into movies. Because they are just that good! While this book had somewhat of a lighthearted feel there were deeper issues that Rainy and Alex were dealing with individually. A lot was revealed about Alex’s past which explained a lot about his behavior. I loved to see that the growth in his character matured him, but he still had those charming and fun things about his personality that made him a great character to read about! This book had a few surprises and a little bit of a mystery that added a lot of interest and some suspenseful moments as well! I loved it! And y’all the epilogue has the cutest, sweetest thing. I can’t spoil it, so you will just have to read it and then we will chat. But, melt my heart. If you need me I will just be sitting here waiting for the next book. Just kidding, kind of.

To purchase a copy of Charming the Troublemaker or learn more about Pepper Basham visit the links below!

Amazon: Charming the Troublemaker

https://pepperdbasham.com/

A Refuge Assured by Jocelyn Green

Summary:

Lacemaker Vivienne Rivard never imagined her craft could threaten her life. Yet in revolutionary France, it is a death sentence when the nobility, and those associated with them, are forced to the guillotine. Vivienne flees to Philadelphia but finds the same dangers lurking in the French Quarter, as revolutionary sympathizers threaten the life of a young boy left in her care, who some suspect to be the Dauphin. Can the French settlement, Azilum, offer permanent refuge?

Militiaman Liam Delaney proudly served in the American Revolution, but now that the new government has imposed an oppressive tax that impacts his family, he barely recognizes the democracy he fought for. He wants only to cultivate the land of his hard-won farm near Azilum, but soon finds himself drawn into the escalating tension of the Whiskey Rebellion. When he meets a beautiful young Frenchwoman recently arrived from Paris, they will be drawn together in surprising ways to fight for the peace and safety for which they long.

My Thoughts:

This book was fantastic from start to finish! The descriptions are vivid and raw and really make you feel like you are there an experiencing this world with the characters. I was on edge while reading most of this book. There is so much tension due to opposing political views and also Vivienne must be careful who she trusts because of her past. I loved Vivienne’s character and her resiliency after her world is turned upside down. Liam and Vivienne’s relationship was another reason I loved this book. Their relationship went through various natural stages which made it believable, and kept me holding out hope that these two would have a future together someday. I was completely engrossed in this story, captivated by the very first pages. The writing is just so good. This is the kind of book I think of when I think of really great Historical Fiction. No spoilers, but the end of this book was a little mind blowing in the good kind of way. I love it when a book is able to surprise me as a reader. That is when you know it was good! I definitely recommend reading this book! It hits so elements that a good Historical Fiction should! Rich, captivating, tense and tragic, with danger and a bit of romance. Just excellent!

To purchase a copy of A Refuge Assured or learn more about Jocelyn Green visit the links below!

Amazon: A Refuge Assured

http://www.jocelyngreen.com/

*I was provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

The Heart’s Appeal by Jennifer Delamere

Summary:

Strong-minded and independent Julia Bernay comes to London to study medicine and become a doctor–a profession that has only just opened up to women. She witnesses a serious accident, and through her quick actions saves the life of an ambitious young barrister named Michael Stephenson.

Coming from a family that long ago lost its money and its respectability, Michael Stephenson has achieved what many would have thought was impossible. Hard work and an aptitude for the law have enabled him to rise above his family’s stigma and set him on the path to wealth and recognition. But his well-laid plans are upended when the accident brings Julia into his life.

Michael soon discovers he’s met a woman every bit as stubborn and determined to make her mark on the world as he is. Sparks fly–but will they find common ground?

My Thoughts:

This is the second book in Jennifer Delamere’s London Beginnings series and I really enjoyed it. I am always drawn to anything Historical set in London! This book starts off with an unexpected accident that I didn’t see coming! That part really took me by surprise and held my attention! I connected with this particular book more than the first in this series, and I think it really is because I enjoyed Julia’s character so much. She had confidence but was not prideful, she was direct, but not bossy, and she was devoted to her beliefs, but was never self righteous or condescending. I am always a fan of a strong female character! I have a hard time with some heroines who are too overbearing or self righteous, however Julia was the perfect balance of kindness and intelligence, which made her very likable. I also enjoyed Michael’s character. He had integrity and remained honest throughout his involvement with the trial and I admired that about him. I really appreciated that I never had to question his character. He had a bit of a sense of humor as well that peeked through at times which was nice. One of the things that I most enjoyed about this book was seeing Julia discover her calling and how events and circumstances shaped where the Lord was calling her to work. I thought that weaving that subtly throughout the story was very true to life. This book was great! I am actually going to go back and read the first book again. I enjoyed this one so much that I want a refresher of The Captain’s Daughter! I would definitely recommend this book to fans of Inspirational Historical Fiction. It can definitely be read as a stand alone book, but will feel much more complete if you read The Captain’s Daughter first. Looking forward to the next one in this series! While this book has a definite conclusion, there is a certain aspect that ends on a bit of a cliffhanger. Say what? I was certain there would be another page, or sentence or two. So, the wait is on! You can bet I am going to grab up the next book as soon as it releases! Way to hook me! Job well done! I am not mad about it one bit! I love it!

To purchase a copy of The Heart’s Appeal or learn more about Jennifer Delamere visit the links below!

Amazon: The Heart’s Appeal

http://www.jenniferdelamere.com/

*I was provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

A Chance at Forever by Melissa Jagears

Summary:

In early 1900s Kansas, Mercy McClain, determined to protect Teaville’s children from the bullying she experienced as a child, finds fulfillment working at the local orphanage and serving on the school board. When Aaron Firebrook, the classmate who bothered her more than any other, petitions the board for a teaching position, she’s dead set against him getting the job.

Aaron knows he deserves every bit of Mercy’s mistrust, but he’s returned to his hometown a changed man and is seeking to earn forgiveness of those he wronged. He doesn’t expect Mercy to like him, but surely he can prove he now has the best interests of the children at heart.

Will resentment and old wounds hold them back, or can Mercy and Aaron put the past behind them in time to face the unexpected threats to everything they’re working for?

My Thoughts:

This is the 3rd book in the Teaville Moral Society series by Melissa Jagears. Melissa Jagears always writes characters with depth and relatable flaws. I always find myself immersed in these books due to how realistic these characters seem. I loved Aaron right from the start! He was my favorite character in this book. I really loved that we got to see his brokenness because of his past, but also the tremendous growth his character had undergone. He was grace in the midst of suspicion, doubts, and hurtful reminders of his past. The lengths that Aaron went through to make amends for the actions in his past were astounding. Aaron is my fave for sure! Mercy was harder for me to connect with. I recognize that she was guarded because of past hurts and skeptical in order to protect herself and the orphans she cared for, however I wanted her to be more kind and lighten up a little bit. I think she was admirable because she was strong and capable despite her physical obstacles and being orphaned at a young age. There was a bit of an underlying mystery going on within this story that comes to light in the last chapters and it added a bit of intrigue and some suspense to the already tense situation at the orphanage. Definitely a little twist I didn’t see coming! I don’t want to give any spoilers, but the book wrapped up in an unexpected yet satisfying way! I love epilogues at the end of books that give a glimpse of characters and how their lives look as time has progressed. I enjoyed this book and think it was a great addition to this series.

To purchase a copy of A Chance at Forever or learn more about Melissa Jagears visit the links below!

Amazon: A Chance at Forever

http://melissajagears.com/

*I was provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

Oath of Honor by Lynette Eason

Summary:

Police officer Isabelle St. John loves her crazy, loud, law-enforcement family. With three brothers and two sisters, she’s never without someone to hang out with–or fight with. And she knows they’ll be there for her when things get tough. Like when her partner is murdered and she barely escapes with her own life.

Determined to discover exactly what happened, Izzy’s investigation sends her headfirst into a criminal organization, possibly with cops on the payroll–including someone from her own family. With her dead partner’s handsome homicide detective brother Ryan shadowing her every move, Izzy’s head is spinning. How can she secure justice for her partner when doing so could mean sending someone she loves to prison? And how will she guard her heart when the man she’s had a secret crush on for years won’t leave her side?

My Thoughts:

It appears we are in for another fast paced, action filled series from Lynette Eason! This story had me hooked from the beginning. The first chapters were intense. When Izzy’s partner was killed, I was in shock. It happened so fast, I had so many questions, and I really had a hard time believing he was gone. Yep, hooked from the beginning. As the story progressed there were twists and turns that I did not expect. I love it when a book can surprise me with a twist. This book had me guessing until the last chapters. I loved Izzy and Ryan. I loved that they were brought together because of their love for Kevin and their need to find justice for his death. One of the things that I enjoyed most about this book was being introduced to the St. John family. They seem to have such a fun family dynamic and I am anxious to see what come from the rest of the family as this series continues! I enjoyed this book and will definitely be keeping up with this series!

If you would like to purchase a copy of Oat of Honor or learn more about the author visit the links below!

Amazon: Oath Of Honor

http://lynetteeason.com/