The Second Half - Lauraine Snelling Mona and Ken Sorenson are approaching the best years of their lives. Mona's greatest concern is that Ken will learn of the surprise party she's planning for his retirement from his job as Dean of Students at Stone University. They've already been making plans to travel, spend limitless hours in the garden, and Ken is looking forward to working on his woodworking and fishing with his grandchildren. It's what they deserve after years of careful planning. But things begin to unravel when Ken learns that office politics are about to destroy his department. Can he really just leave, abandoning the work he spent a lifetime achieving? Mona is eager to build her event planning business with Ken's help, but rather than supporting her, he expresses concern that the stress of the work will send her back into the depression she struggles with. Then, just days before Ken's last official day of work, their son, a Special Forces officer in the Army, learns he's being immediately deployed on a six-month mission in Pakistan. Since his wife left him, the only people he trusts to care for his two young children are his parents. In an instant, everything Ken and Mona spent their lives planning changes, and they will need to find strength, both physical and mental, to become parents once more. This is not the second half they wanted, and when their son fails to contact them as planned, they struggle to trust that it is God's plan, not theirs, that matters most.
I am always on the lookout for good military books. Joel Rosenberg is always a good go-to, but many have read his books and I needed more ideas to give out. I have finally found one I can share, Mike Dellosso. His books are action packed, fast paced and fun to read. Centralia is book #1 with Kill Devil book #2. Kill Devil picks up a couple months after Centralia ends.
*If you have not read book#1 yet, you may want to skip a couple of paragraphs as this may have a couple spoilers. *
Jed Patrick believes he and his family are safe. They have survived the torture and experiments that Centralia had done to Jed. He has regained his memory and rejoined his family, ready to live a quiet life. Except, he has something that Centralia wants and they are willing to kill to get it.
Not knowing who he can trust and believing the whole government is corrupt, Jed decides he has to take down the project, even at the risk to his own life. It is a risk he is willing to take to make sure that his wife and daughter will be safe.
* It is safe to rejoin if you were avoiding spoiler* There is loads of intrigue to follow. You are never quite sure who the good guys are. With shadow government agencies and millions spent without the citizens knowing it, you begin to wonder if this book is based on more truth than you want it to be. But I guess that is what makes a fiction book good, that you begin to believe it.
I recommend these in order and I am looking forward to the next installment in the Jed Patrick series.
Esther - Rebecca Kanner
A glittering Persian king has a vast empire that reaches farther than where the sun meets the horizon. He is bathed in riches and commands a frightening military force. He possesses power beyond any other mortal man and rules his kingdom as a god. Anything he desires, he has. Any woman he wants, he possesses. Thousands of them. Young virgins from all across his many lands.
A Jewish girl is ripped from her hut by the king’s brutish warriors and forced to march across blistering, scorched earth to the capital city. Trapped for months in the splendid cage of the king’s palace, she must avoid the ire of the king’s concubines and eunuchs all while preparing for her one night with the king. Soon the fated night arrives, and she does everything in her power to captivate the king and become his queen.
But wearing the crown brings with it a new set of dangers. When a ruthless man plies the king’s ear with whispers of genocide, it is up to the young queen to prevent the extermination of the Jews. She must find the strength within to violate the king’s law, risk her life, and save her people.
This is a story of finding hidden depths of courage within one’s self. Of risking it all to stand up for what is right.
It is summer time and life is suppose to be easy, right? Well with all the new titles arriving and soon to arrive, I am not sure that is correct. I guess I need to take the next month off and just read.
Happy Reading, Esther - Rebecca Kanner - (backcover) This is a story of finding hidden depths of courage within one's self. Of risking it all to stand up for what is right. This is the story of a Queen.
The Second Half - Lauraine Snelling - Mona and Keith Sorenson are looking forward to a quieter slower paced life. Keith is retiring from his position as Dean of Students, Mona is building a business of her own and they plan on traveling. One phone call from their son changes it all and they find themselves taking in their two young grandchildren.
Claiming Noah - Amanda Ortlepp - Catriona and James struggle to have a baby, when Catriona finally through in-vitro, carries a baby to term they decide to donate their frozen embryo. Diana and Liam receive the gift of one of the embryo and also have a son. But when one of the boys is kidnapped, the two families find themselves tied together in more ways than they ever dreamed of.
Fetching Sweetness - Dana Mentink - What should have been an easy trip retrieving a manuscript turns into a hunt for the reclusive author's dog, Sweetness. Stephanie just want to get the job done and get promoted, but when Sweetness makes a break for it, Stephanie's dream of being a literary agent disappear along with the dog. Will she be able to get Sweetness back?
To Follow her Heart - Rebecca Demarino - The Southold Chronicles - #3 - 1664 and Captain Jeremy Horton's shipwrecks on the coast of Barbados. No survivors. Patience Terry is devastated as she had hoped that Jeremy would give up the sea for her someday soon. But Jeremy is unaware of the news of his death and is secretly sailing to New Amsterdam to claim it for Britain.
The Things We Knew - Catherine West - Can the Carlisle family survive the past? 12 years ago after their mother's death all but Lynette left town. Now with their father's failing health and financial concerns, they are returning. Secrets are beginning to surface, will they be able to forgive each other?
No Way Up - Mary Conneally - #1 The Cimarron Legacy The Fight for the Cimarron Ranch Has Just Begun! When Cimarron Ranch patriarch Chance Boden is caught in an avalanche, only the quick actions of hired hand Heath Kincaid save him. Before leaving by train to receive treatment to save his leg--and possibly his life--Chance demands that Heath read the patriarch's will and see its conditions enforced immediately. If Chance's three bickering adult children, Justin, Sadie, and Cole, don't live and work at the ranch for an entire year, ownership of the ranch will pass to a despised distant relative.
Before long, however, Heath discovers that the avalanche may have been intentionally set--and that more danger lurks ominously. Finding his own future--and a desired future with Sadie--locked up in saving the Cimarron Ranch, Heath and the Boden siblings must work together against outside forces that threaten them all.
This review has a couple different things about it. First it is for a book I wouldn't normally carry here in the store, but just might now. Secondly it is an older book. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah released back in 2015 but I have just begun to hear about it now. The reviews I was getting from readers I know were overwhelming. When I had 3 people ask me about it in one day I decided to check it out. All I can say is wow!
I have read more WWII books than I can remember this past couple of years. I really didn't think there would be much difference in this one. I was very wrong. If I can say it once, I will repeat myself a couple times, read this book. If you are interested in WWII this is a good read, if you just like a good story, READ THIS BOOK.
I became emotionally attached to the characters, not so much that it made me cry, but I did find myself arguing with them and talking to them as if they were sitting beside me. I am sure that is why I found this book so good. The characters could easily been my family and friends.
Vianne lives in the quiet little town of Carriveau, France. When WWII arrives at France's doorstep Vianne's beloved husband goes to battle for their country. Instead of the expected quick finish to the war, he is imprisoned along with many of the soldiers and Vianne is left to survive the war herself.
Isabelle, Vianne's rebellious sister, is a different matter. She is ready to fight herself. Though only 18 at the start of the war, she quickly grows up and is willing to do whatever it takes to get the Germans out of France. Even at the risk of her own life.
That is a short look at what is the basis of this book, but the story is so much more than that. I don't want to say more as you should discover it for yourself, just as I did. Maybe that is what I loved about this book is how much stayed hidden until found by reading it. The Nightingale was not at all what I expected, but so much more. Do yourself a favor and go find a copy and go fight a few battles in France.
Forever and Forever - Josi S. Kilpack The Courtship of Henry Longfellow and Fanny Appleton. It's 1836, and nineteen-year-old Fanny Appleton, a privileged daughter of a wealthy, upper-class Boston industrialist, is touring Europe with her family. Like many girls of her day, she enjoys the fine clothes, food, and company of the elite social circles. But unlike her peers, Fanny is also drawn to education, literature, and more intellectual pursuits.Published author and poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is also touring Europe, but under much different circumstances. Recently widowed, he is gathering research for a new publication that he hopes will secure his professorship at Harvard College.Befriended by the Appleton family while visiting Switzerland, Henry is introduced to Fanny and sees in her a kindred spirit, a lover of language and literature and high ideals. He is in love. Fanny, however, is uncertain. He is from a much lower social class and is older than she is. How could such a relationship ever thrive?Could a book of Henry's poetry, personally delivered, persuade Fanny to believe in a love that
How are you doing on your summer reading? Working your way through the pile? Here are few new titles to add to that list.
You are welcome. :-)
A Beauty Refined - Tracie Peterson - Sapphire Brides #2 - Phoebe Von Bergen is a daughter of a German count and looking forward to her first visit to the United States with her father. Little does she know what her father's true intentions for her are.
Missing - Lisa Harris - Nikki Boyd files #2 - Nikki is not usually called for a murder, but when 2 murders and 2 missing show up, she's ready to help. What she finds is a twisting maze that leads her to her friends boat and another dead body. She needs to unravel the clues and stay ahead of the killer who will stop at nothing to keep her quiet.
Forever and Forever - Josi S. Kilpack - A historical proper romance - The Courtship of Henry Longfellow and Fanny Appleton - Fanny Appleton is touring Europe with her family. She meets Henry Longfellow and he is soon smitten with her. She on the other hand is unsure because of their age and class differences.
Almost like being in Love - Beth K. Vogt - A Destination Wedding novel #3 - Caron and her boyfriend are not engaged and when she breaks the news that she has won a destination wedding. When Caron's ex reenters her life, will she be able to focus on her wedding or will she be distracted by "what if?"
No Way Up - Mary Connealy - The Cimarron Legacy #1 - Patriarch Chance Boden is caught in an avalanche. With his leg and possibly his life at risk he boards a train for treatment. But he demands that the terms of his will are enforced immediately. The terms? His adult children must live on the ranch for 1 year to inherit. Otherwise a distant relative will inherit. But is there more going on? Are more lives at risk? Who is behind the danger that is lurking.
The Loyal Heart - Shelley Shepard Gray - A Lone Star Hero's Love Story #1 - Robert Truax promised his fellow soldier, Phillip Markham, that he would take care of Phillip's wife if anything happened to him. When Robert arrives in Galveston, he is taken with Miranda's beauty and grace. But he knows a secret that could destroy her.
What Matters Most - Kellie Coates Gilbert Just when she can't take it anymore, Leta finally catches a break. But when things seem too good to be true, they often are. Finding her dream job went right out the window when Leta Breckenridge had to quit school to help care for her mother suffering from dementia. When a delinquent account may force her mother into a less desirable facility, Leta is thrilled to land a high-paying job at an Austin public relations firm. But her seemingly ideal job turns into a nightmare when she learns the firm is a front for a political opposition organization--and that the research she's been collecting will be used against Nathan Emerson, the handsome senator she's swiftly falling in love with.
Nathan is a rising political star being pressured to run a bid to unseat the current governor of Texas. He's already in a relationship with a woman much better suited to be a politician's wife, but he's never met anyone like Leta. Could this feisty woman hold the key to his heart--and his future?
With emotional depth and keen insight into what drives us, Kellie Coates Gilbert offers a salient story that calls us to consider what we value most in this life.
Have you ever dreamed of taking a trip to London, England? Katherine Reay offers you a chance to take that trip a little less expensively. The Bronte Plot takes us on a journey to all those places that readers dream of visiting while they walk the streets and alleyways of London. But she has a different idea in mind than just relaxing, she wants us and her characters to find themselves and let go of a past that is holding them back.
Lucy Alling works for a designer but some of her methods are a bit shady. When she is caught, it not only costs her her relationship with her boss, but her boyfriend as well. She is not sure where to turn, until her boyfriend's grandmother, Helen, requests that Lucy join her on a buying trip to London.
There is more to this trip than just an antiques buying trip, it is a way to confront their past and to make sure those ghosts are forever put to rest. Both Helen and Lucy have something in their past that they are not proud of, but each must find the answer for themselves.
Not only do we get to journey along with Lucy and Helen to some of the great writers' walking tours of London, we walk alongside as each of them finds their way to self forgiveness. Along the way we might even get a chance to ask ourselves some of the same questions that they ask.
I will admit it was fun to go on this trip with Lucy and Helen, but it really just made me want to go to London again. I am sure you will enjoy the journey as much as I did.
What Sinister Secrets Lurk in the Shadows of Yesterday?
Natchez, Mississippi—Private Investigator Nate Price and his new wife, Isabelle, need a vacation. Their coworkers generously team up to surprise them with a belated honeymoon...but the happy trip turns sour when Izzy spies her ex-husband, who appears to have taken up his gambling addiction once again.
While the boss is away, Price Investigations remains in the hands of Beth Kirby, a former police officer, and Michael Preston, a former forensic accountant. Hardly a dream team, as Beth resents working with a man who has no experience in his new job.
But Beth and Michael must move past their differences if they hope to uncover the truth behind a beloved Southern preacher's demise. The preacher's widow suspects foul play, despite the evidence indicating suicide.
With tension escalating between these investigators and local law enforcement—and new threats arising on all sides—how will Beth, Michael, and Nate hold on to faith and bring the truth to light?
We are sneaking up on a very busy month for us at the store. To be honest there are not many months when we don't have several activities here at the store, but some months are busier than others. August is one such month, but that is all the more reason to enjoy a whole pile of new books.
Honor Redeemed - Christine Johnson - Keys of Promise #2 - Prosperity send her love off to the Army and then waited for him to return, but when her parents both pass, she only has one prospect. Sail to Key West and marry David. When she arrives she finds that not only has he not been pinning for her, he is married. What will she do to survive? Will she ever find love again?
What Matters Most - Kellie Coates Gilbert - A Texas Gold novel #4 - Leta has to put her career on hold to take care of her mother. When a high-paying job lands in her lap she is eager to snap it up. But she learns the firm is using the data they get to fight against Nathan Emerson, the handsome senator that Leta is finding herself falling in love with.
An Elegant Facade - Kristi Ann Hunter - Hawthorne House #2 - Lady Georgina Hawthorne is going to marry well. She spends years preparing for her debut season and it promises to be a grand success. Colin McCrae has money and power but no title. He is invited but not excepted enough to marry well. He also doesn't plan on marrying a shallow woman like Georgina. But is there more to her than you see on the surface?
The Courtship Basket - Amy Clipson - An Amish Heirloom Novel #2 - Rachel is heartbroken when her beau leaves her to date another, her best friend to boot. To get her mind off the pain, she takes the job teaching school for Amish kids with disabilities. Mike is overwhelmed with responsibilities. When his younger brother John joins Rachel's class the attraction grows.
Magnolia Moonlight - Mary Ellis - #3 Secrets of the South Mysteries - While Nate and Isabelle are away on the honeymoon, Beth and Michael are in charge. They are having issues getting along as Beth is having a hard time believing he will be able to do any good as Michael has no experience. They have to put their differences aside to help solve the murder of a beloved pastor.
Life in Abney, Texas, is predictable and safe--until the night a massive solar flare wipes out all modern technology.
Shelby Sparks, novelist and single mom, had one goal: to provide for her diabetic son. In the wake of this global disaster, her mission hasn't changed. Only now, medication is a priceless commodity and the future resembles an apocalyptic nightmare.
Max Berkman and Shelby were once sweethearts, but he lost his chance at claiming her love years ago. When the abrupt loss of power ushers him into a leadership role, he rises to the occasion. But his highest priority--to keep Shelby and her son safe--could prove to be the biggest challenge of all.
As the brilliant northern lights give way to deep shadows, Max and Shelby's faith will be tested like never before. Only one rule remains: Find a way to survive.
There is a sudden push to write books set in the late 50's and early 60's. They are gentle books telling of a generation who has survived one war, has watched their country fight another and knows they are on the cusp of fighting a third in 20 years. The greatest generation is now married, finding work and living their lives. But of course not everything is perfect.
Eden Hill by Bill Higgs (yes he is married to Liz Curtis Higgs) is one of those such books. Set in a sleepy little town in Kentucky it has the feel and sound of Mayberry. Everyone knows everyone and their business. It's a little town where nothing ever changes and that is a good life.
Virgil Osgood runs the local service station. He has done it since taking over for his father after returning from WWII. Virgil loves his life. His wife takes good care of him even if she does cook some strange dishes every once in awhile. His son Virgil the third is a good kid, even if he once in awhile gets in trouble. He walks to work every day except Sunday and provides a good life.
Then the lot across from Osgood is sold to a young man who is going to open a new Zippy service station. What is Virgil to do? His wife says "compete," his pastor tells him to "love his neighbor," and Virgil has no idea what to do. He is worried about losing his business and not being able to provide for his family, but he wants to do the right thing also.
What I really found enjoyable about this book is the question that gets asked throughout the book. "Who is my neighbor?" It takes that question that is asked in the Bible and makes us wrestle with the question of how do we deal with a neighbor that is threatening our own livelihood. Do we have to love them anyway? How do you do that? What does that look like?
Bill doesn't give us all the answers but he does take us on a delightful journey with some hints along the way to help us figure it out for ourselves. I am looking forward to more books from Mr. Higgs and maybe someday he and his wife can write a book together.
A general’s wife and a slave girl forge a friendship that transcends race, culture, and the crucible of Civil War.
Mary Anna Custis Lee is a great-granddaughter of Martha Washington, wife of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, and heiress to Virginia’s storied Arlington house and General Washington’s personal belongings.
Born in bondage at Arlington, Selina Norris Gray learns to read and write in the schoolroom Mary and her mother keep for the slave children and eventually becomes Mary’s housekeeper and confidante. As Mary’s health declines, Selina becomes her personal maid, strengthening a bond that lasts until death parts them.
Forced to flee Arlington at the start of the Civil War, Mary entrusts the keys to her beloved home to no one but Selina. When Union troops begin looting the house, it is Selina who confronts their commander and saves many of its historic treasures.
In a story spanning crude slave quarters, sunny schoolrooms, stately wedding parlors, and cramped birthing rooms, novelist Dorothy Love amplifies the astonishing true-life account of an extraordinary alliance and casts fresh light on the tumultuous years leading up to and through the wrenching battle for a nation’s soul.
A classic American tale, Mrs. Lee and Mrs. Gray is the first novel to chronicle this beautiful fifty-year friendship forged at the crossroads of America’s journey from enslavement to emancipation.
Mrs. Lee and Mrs. Gray - Dorothy Love - Mary Anna Custis Lee is born in luxury. Selina Norris Gray is born in slavery. Two women from very different lives form a friendship through happiness and sorrow.
In His Place - Harry C. Griffith - In the shadow of Charles Sheldon's WWJD, pastor Steve Long challenges his congregation to truly live out Christ commands us to be. Facing trial that make it harder and harder for Pastor Steve to continue living the command, he realizes that not everything God calls us to is easy.
Which Way Home - Linda Byler - Hester' Hunt for Home #2 - Hester's heart is in two places. Born Native American and raised Amish, she finds herself unsure of where she belongs. She marries an Amish man, but the marriage struggles. When an Native American brave offers a way out, Hester needs to decide where she belongs.
Sarah's Surrender - Vickie McDonough - #3 Land Rush Dreams - Sarah is surprised by Luke's proposal. She has dreams of her own and sees the Oklahoma Land Rush as an answer to that dream. But can a woman survive on her own?
Eden Hill - Bill Higgs - Nothing has changed in Eden Hill for years. Virgil likes it that way. He runs the local gas station. He knows when lunch and supper are. He knows that his wife loves him and is sure she knows he loves her. But now the property across the road from his gas station has a new sign, it is going to be home to a Zipco's full service station. And his wife is acting strange. Change is not good...
Here are a few summer reading ideas for July. Again in no particular order.
Angela Hunt - Everyone knows Delilah's story.
Her great love Samson and how she betrayed him for riches. But what made her really do it? Was it just the gold and fame or was there
another reason behind her needing the money?
The Secret to
Hummingbird Cake- Celeste Fletcher
McHale - 3 women, friends since 1st grade, continue to live life together. Fun, silly at times and yet powerful. (know there is some strong langugue in this
The Red Door Inn–
Liz Johnson - #1 Prince Edward Island Dreams - Marie and Seth agree on only one
thing. Helping Seth's Uncle get his
dream B&B open in time for tourist season.
Marie is hiding from her overbearing father and Seth is trying to heal
from his broken heart.
Step by Step–
Janice Calvert - Crisis Team #1 - Taylor Cabot is moving on from the lose of
her husband. She is ready to start
checking things off her "survival list." One she wasn't planning on was to find love again
until she meets a handsome surgeon.
Lynette Eason - #1 Elite Guardians - Wade Savage has a stalker. His father hires one of the Elite Guardians
to protect him. When that guardian is
almost killed in the line of duty, Olivia steps in. Not only will her skills be tested in keeping
Wade alive, her heart is in danger also.
Sea Rose Inn–
Irene Hannon - #4 A Hope Harbor Novel - Eric returns to Hope Harbor and his old
home to regroup and find a new career path.
The problem is his family home has been turned into a B&B, a noisy
one at that. BJ Stevens is determined to
get her client's dream up and running and Eric is a distraction that she
Traces of Guilt–
Dee Henderson - An Evie Blackwell Cold
Case #1 - Evie Blackwell loves her job as a detective. She looks forward to starting a new cold case
task force. Her first job leads her to
Gabriel Thane's home town. The case she
is working on is one he has history with and he is not sure he is ready to
reopen it or find the answers.
The Ringmaster’s Wife–
Kristy Cambron – June - In turn-of-the-century America, a young girl dreams of
a world that stretches beyond the confi nes of a quiet life on the family farm.
With little more than her wit and a cigar box of treasures, Mable steps away
from all she knows, seeking the limitless marvels of the Chicago World’s Fair.
There, a chance encounter triggers her destiny—a life with a famed showman by
the name of John Ringling.
Dawn at Emberwilde–
Sara Ladd - #2 A Treasure of Surrey - Isabel was never happy at Fellsworth
School, but a teaching job there will help her and her sister find a stable
life. When unknown relatives show up,
Isabel's life is turned upside down and she now has to learn a whole different
set of rules to live by.
Beverly Lewis - The mistakes of the past haunt Lucy Flaud, who years ago
stopped attending the activities for courting-age young people in her hometown
of Bird-in-Hand. Now twenty-five and solidly past the age of Amish courtship,
Lucy has given up any hope of marriage, instead focusing her efforts on
volunteering in both the Plain and fancy communities of Lancaster County. Yet
no matter how hard Lucy strives, she feels uncertain that she'll ever find
Someone Like You–
Victoria Bylin - Julia is working hard to make a good life for herself and her
son. When a big account comes in she
will be spending time at Caliente Springs resort. Little does she know that it will bring her
face to face with her college sweetheart.
Zeke is more interested in keeping the resort afloat that renewing their
old relationship, but his heart tells him otherwise.
What Happened on Beale
Street– Mary Ellis - #2 Secrets
of the South Mysteries - Nate and Nicki are called to New Orleans by a
childhood friend. When they arrive, he
is missing and they are left with few clues as to what happened to him. The choirboy reputation that Danny had before
he disappeared does not fit the trail they are lead on to find him.