Five Stars, Four Stars, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Rebecca Connolly, Three Stars

A Little Bit of Romance

My husband took me on a quick date this afternoon. We needed to a run an errand and we used it as an excuse to also grab a treat and go for a walk while our kids were at my sisters. I made the comment that I think the last time we were out of the house, together, without our children, was pre-pandemic. It was so nice! As much as I love to read about fictional romances, everyone needs some real life romance every once and a while… even during a pandemic.

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Weekly Reading Round Up

What a Spinster Wants by Rebecca Connolly51R-AenKs5L

 

We seriously love Rebecca’s book so much! Two of us read this book this week and it may have been one of our top favorite, and that’s saying something because they’re all so good. I had actually been anticipating a romance with Henshaw from moments in the other Spinster Books, so that surprised me a little, in a good way. I love being surprised. The romance she created instead was just right for the Lady Edith we have had glimpses of and came to love in this book. Wonderfully vulnerable characters who are given opportunities to become strong backed by a compelling plot made it hard to put the book down!

***** Low Language, Low Romance, Low Violence, Low Religion

 

The Nerd and the Quarter Back/ The Good Girl and The Bad Boy (Jackson High Series) by IMG_2839M.L. Collins

This was the first book I (Mel) have read from this author and unfortunately I cringed through most of it. However, I thought I’d give the second one a try and it was…better. A cute young adult book centered around breaking out of cliques. It was a clean High School romance and I appreciated that, but I don’t think I’ll read any more of the series.

*** Low Language, Low Romance, Low Violence, Low Religion

 

How to Not Fall for the Guy Next Door by Meg Easton 51t31eCEFEL

This was a really cute romance. I felt like both Addison and Ian were given a history and back stories that deepened the story line. There were a few inconsistencies which pulled me out of the story, but overall It was sweet and clean, which we love.

**** Low Language, Low Romance, Low Violence, Low Religion

 

 

 

Anneka Walker, Five Stars, Four Stars, Heather B. Moore, Jennifer Moore, Julie Wright, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Melanie Jacobson, Rachael Anderson, Sarah M. Eden, Three Stars, Timeless Romance Anthologies

So Little Time…

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Weekly Reading Round Up

I find myself intensely jealous of all those talking about all the reading they’re getting down during their stay at home….my reading opportunities have significantly decreased.

Between five people stuck in the same house and schooling at home, I’m loving our time together, but it’s hard to really get into a book when you’re interrupted every five minutes. I’ve found a new love and appreciation for novella’s, for just this reason.

My favorite novella I read this week is a prequel to Jennifer Moore’s new series, The Blue Orchid Society. Book One releases May 1st.

Emmeline by Jennifer Moore41jL4JnHdFL

I really enjoyed the depth of the characters in this story. That can be a hard thing to manage in a novella. Both Arthur and Emmeline were very well written. The very first scene drew me into the story and I was hooked all the way through. I admit I was a little thrown by the interesting use of psychic abilities in the novel, but it didn’t detract from the story in anyway and made me interested to see if that plays a part in the series to come as a whole. I’m so very excited to dive into Solving Sophronia this weekend.

**** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

A Monumental Love by Susan Aylworth 41X6TWrTLfL

This story was set in the Navajo Nation, a new setting for me. You can tell the author either has first hand knowledge or has definitely done her research. The knowledge of the land and culture was very detailed. I however felt those details and the over all plot didn’t flow together well. The story itself was sweet, but I didn’t ever feel a connection to the setting, plot or characters as I would have liked.

** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

Her Three Suitors by Anneka Walker 51cyWQIAEpL

I love fairy tale re-tellings and was very curious to see where the author went with Goldilocks and the Three Bears.  It is obviously not a well used fairy tell as far as romance authors go. I was impressed with the subtle nods to the fairy tale. The plot was a little heavy on the drama and angst, but the relationship between the three friends (bears) was done really well and fun to read. Sophia’s character seemed a little flighty and rash. I would’ve liked a little more depth to her and her family, something that can be hard to achieve in a novella. 

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Love at the House Party by Kasey Stockton51V2sJeRaCL

This was the only full length novel I’ve read recently. Mowing the lawn today while I left the kiddos inside with daddy was a much needed break and allowed me to finally finish it.

This is the first novel I’ve read by this author. Originally I had a hard time getting into the story because of how similar it was to other stories I’d read lately. While not wholly original, the story was really well written. The characters were engaging and had good dimension. I felt connected enough to the story to know I was missing some subtleties as far as side characters went and found myself looking for other books the author has written. Happilly, this is book 3 in the series, looks like I just upped my growing tbr pile.

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

Summer Wedding Collection (A Timeless Romance Anthology Book 3)51OTcGq0cxL

This collection has stories from some of my favorite authors: Melanie Jacobson, Julie Wright, Rachael Anderson, Annette Lyon, Heather B Moore and Sarah Eden.

I don’t always love every story in these collections, but with a line-up like that you can bet I loved them all. This was actually a re-read for me, and just as good the second time around!

***** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Five Stars, High Violence, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Moderate Language, Moderate Romance, Nichole Van, Three Stars

Give me a Break

Weekly Reading Round Up

With all the changes and life adjustments happening… this week I needed something familiar. I needed something that would make me smile and make my heart happy. Nichole Van‘s House of Oak Series might just get the label of ‘my favorite series ever’. It’s high praise, but well deserved. And I read them all this week, and loved them all over again. We’ve already given you our effusive praise for this series here. house-of-oak-series-by-nichole-van-L-m199uJ

However I realized in re-reading that post that I hadn’t mentioned my most favorite book in that series, which is Clandestine (book 3).

I love Marc and Kit’s story. It makes me laugh out loud. Modern pop culture references in a regency era setting make for some fantastic moments. I remember the first time I read it, I just about dropped my phone with the twist she throws in. Intelligent, witty, emotional writing was exactly what I needed this week. I could read this series again and again and be delighted every time.

***** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Aeva the Wild by Claire Marion 41hog8XXkSL

I (Aimee) had never read anything set in the viking era and it intrigued me. I should have processed however, the reality of how vulgar the vikings were into my decision to pick this book up. It is very violent, including sexual violence. And though there wasn’t a ton of language for most of the book, it oddly picked up in the last twenty percent of the book. So while the author was fantastic and the plot was very well done, the ratings are a lot higher than I’m comfortable with.

***Moderate Language, High Violence, Moderate Romance (The consensual romance was moderate. The sexual violence is categorized under the High Violence)

 

His Lady in Hiding by Jen Geigle Johnson41+midp8xiL._SY346_

You can find our blog tour review on this great book here.

 

 

Five Stars, Four Stars, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Lucy McConnell, Moderate Language, Moderate Romance, Nancy Campbell Allen, Sheralyn Pratt, Three Stars

No More Adulting

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Weekly Reading Round Up

Don’t Kiss Your Lab Partner by Lucy McConnell 51DKGSj1DAL
When I don’t want to adult anymore my go to reading is always young adult novels. They make me smile. Lucy McConnell is a favorite of ours, so when she comes out with an young adult novel on a week I’m really done adulting, it’s a time to rejoice. This was just what I needed. It was a quick, cute, fun read.  Adelle was an adorable character that you love right away. Such a great start to a new series.

**** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

Road Trip with the Enemy by Kelsie Stelting411m+rv2+ZL

A little ironic that two of us picked young adult books this week that dealt with grief and death. Especially when that seems to be something so many are dealing with currently. The author handled it really well, such good emotion.  There were a few things that Sydney’s character did that I wouldn’t want my teenager to think was an okay way of grieving, but the author did a really good job of showing how people cope and grieve differently and the ramifications of that.

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

Brass Carriages and Glass Hearts by Nancy Campbell Allen51SYSmFZNlL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_

I have been waiting rather impatiently for the next steampunk fairy tale. These books are so unique. They balance romance, suspense, fantasy and fairy tale components so well. This one however, wasn’t my favorite. The plot was intriguing and the suspense kept me engaged, but there were a few elements I’d come to expect from the others that felt missing in this one. I found myself often distracted from an otherwise interesting plot because I was trying to figure out the Cinderella aspects. In the other books in this series, the fairy tale connection felt natural and ingenious, this one felt a little forced. I really like the two sides of the same coin concept in the enemies to lovers trope. There were definitely swoon worthy moments between Emme and Oliver and I loved their snarkiness.  I may need to go back and read the last book to see if there’s a little more back story between the two characters that I just don’t remember, because the romance felt a little rushed. Despite not being my favorite, you can bet I’ll be waiting just as impatiently for the next steampunk fairy tale. I love this unique and wonderful world the author has created. 

*** Low Language, Moderate Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

The Kiss That Launched 1,000 GIFS by Sheralyn Pratt 51g4igC4vsL

Not only is this book light and fun, and witty. The perfect romantic comedy. It also has moments of honesty about relationships that make me want to say, hey everyone, read this! I really love her writing so much!

***** Low Language, Low Violence, Moderate Romance, Low Religion.

 

 

The Ghost of You and Me by Kelly Oram pro_pbid_4258569

One of us stayed up until one o’clock in the morning reading this book, that’s how good it was. The author did a really good job of writing both sides of grief. There was accurate portrayals of what it’s like to be the one grieving and what it’s like to be the one on the outside affected.  The conversations and the emotions were real. It’s one I’d actually re-read.

**** Moderate Language, Low Violence, Moderate Romance, Low Religion

Four Stars, Kasie West, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Sally Britton, Three Stars

When life gets you down…read

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Weekly Reading Round-Up

A Princess for the Gentleman by Mindy Burbidge Strunk 51YVgZSsDlL

Since I read An American in Duke’s Clothing I had been hoping for Dawson’s story. Mindy writes a fun and entertaining friendship between Dawson and Tad and it continued through this story. Although I enjoyed the story I admit that I wish I could’ve gotten a little bit more background on Zia. “A russian princess” without any background into what her royal connections were, made it a little difficult to suspend reality. I did however enjoy Zia’s transformation and her sweet romance.

*** low language, low romance, low violence, low religion

Engaging Sir Isaac by Sally Britton 48495508._SY475_

Sally  Britton is an expert at meet-cutes that make you both sigh and smile. I was a little reluctant to start this one, only because I’m not usually a fan of  books with a “mean girls” sub-plot. However I have not been disappointed with a Sally Britton novel yet, and she did not let me down. Sally didn’t make Isaac completely oblivious or blindsided, he was a true hero. Though Millie struggled with her moral dilemma, Sally gave her both weaknesses and a back bone. The story was witty, redemptive and beautifully done.

**** low language, low romance, low violence, low religion

Moment of Truth by Kasie West51iV1xrr0oL

This book was so unique, I can’t recall reading a story quite like it before. I loved that I didn’t  know who it would end up being and I was surprised with every turn of the page. Kasie is brilliant, I could read twenty more books from her and never tire of her writing.

***** low language, low romance, low violence, low religion

 

 

 

Anneka Walker, Five Stars, Four Stars, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Moderate Language, Moderate Violence, Rebecca Connolly, Three Stars

Trying something new…

Weekly Reading Round-up

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Melanie… 

The Masked Baron by Anneka Walker  

Beauty and the Beast is one of my all time favorite fairy tales so I’m super skeptical of re-tellings. At first I wasn’t sure if I loved where this one was going. The more I got into the story, the more I loved what she did with it. The story is a little more fantastical, a lot of high drama, so keep that in mind going in. I especially loved how she ended it. (releases March 2nd!)

**** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Fall From Trace by Rebecca Connolly

This book has been built up since the beginning of The London League. All the intrigue has been building for four books, and it did not disappoint!  Rebecca Connolly is an expert at romance and her attention to detail in that category makes every scene swoon worthy. She has excellent character development and I came away loving the story and it’s characters. I feel like her actions scenes are sometimes missing that attention to detail, a little rushed maybe, but it doesn’t make me love her stories any less.

***** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Nikki…

Most of my reading this week was taken up with my local book club’s book

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

I loved this book! I loved how it reminded me of my grandfather’s. Both of whom seemed a little prickly on the outside, but had hearts of gold. I loved the humor, the emotions, and the metaphors. The metaphors! Huge fan of his writing style and am now adding “My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry” and “Britt-Marie was Here” to my tbr list.

***** Moderate Language, Moderate Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion 

I also fit in two novellas:

Lady Mary Contrary by Anneka Walker

I really liked the plot idea. I have a soft spot for friends to lovers books. I however had a hard time ever feeling completely invested in the story.  Their banter was well written, I just never connect personally to the characters.

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

and, A Highlander’s Hidden Heart by Julie Coulter Bellon

This story had such a great cute meet. I loved the resolution the author provided between the heroine and her parents, but the overall story felt a little rushed, even for a Novella. I would love to see this story flushed out a little more. The characters had such great potential of both the heroic and villainous kind.

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Aimee…

My little one has been sick for what seems like days on end so my days have been filled with reading Little Blue Truck Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site, and Dear Zoo which are fantastic, if you’re a one year old 😉

 

 

Low Language, Low Religion, Low Violence, Moderate Romance, Three Stars

Break the Rules

I must admit I’m kind of a boring rule follower, however there are some rules that are made to be broken. The no jumping on the bed rule, or the no sweats before breakfast rule, or the don’t slide down the banister rule.

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“For almost a decade, Charlotte Dubois has loved Will Henderson from afar, squelching her heart’s silent yearnings. But no way could she date her best friend’s brother. Their whole friendship is based on one rule: No friend of Kelsey’s can ever date Will. Instead, Charlotte has watched him date and break more hearts than should be legal.

Will Henderson never got over that stolen kiss he shared with Charlotte years ago—though he’s tried valiantly to rid his system of his sister’s best friend.

When circumstances bring the two into each other’s arms again, Will wants to convince Charlotte to break the rules and take a chance on him. Can true love triumph, or will they both end up losing?”

Mylissa Demeyere knows how to build tension and this book does it really well. Mylissa creates a great back story and continues to balance the drama and the tension through the book.

I’m more of a romcom kind of girl, than I am a drama kind of girl, which is why Will was my favorite. He was a great character and really well written. I had a harder time with both Charlotte and Kelsey. I felt like their voice and actions came across a little juvenile at times.

According to our “rules” the romance is a little more on the steamy than sweet side, but the ending is definitely sweet and leaves you content and smiling.

Mylissa is running a giveaway to celebrate the release of her book, you can enter to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card here:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/37eb54092/

Ends 21/12/2019

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway is organized by Mylissa Demeyere. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

You can follow Mylissa on The Following Sites:

Website: http://www.mylissademeyere.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MylissaDemeyereAuthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mylissademeyere/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MylissaDemeyere

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/mylissademeyere/

Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Three Stars

Mom Struggles

Everyday I have to wake up and tell myself, I can do this. I’m a good mom, even if my house is a mess and my children are mad at me. There are moments that make it all worth it, but the mom struggle is real. I love how honestly Ranee Clark handles the struggles Chelsea faces as a single mom. I’ve talked to enough mom’s to know we all feel it. Single or married, working, or not, we all have moments of inadequacy.

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A year after her divorce, Chelsea Lewis spends most of her days working part-time at her cousin’s bakery and hiding veggies in her picky son’s lunches. Then she reconnects with an old friend who helps Chelsea in all the ways she’s forgotten she needs—including romantic ones.

Former football player, DJ Kaiser, is back in his hometown, working as a fireman to serve his community, but after nearly burning down his own house with a barbeque and wrecking the Chief’s truck, his mistakes are stacked against him—until he sets out to ease the stress of Chelsea’s load. Serving her has him feeling like a hero again.

When Chelsea’s ex shows up and begs Chelsea to move closer so his young son doesn’t grow up without his father, Chelsea and DJ have to consider what’s best for Chelsea’s little family, even if that means sacrificing the relationship that has saved them both.

This book was really cute and the writing is good. I liked how she handled both the ex- husband, and the mom struggles Chelsea deals with. It’s probably not a book I would read over and over, but the story was sweet, and not overly dramatic, which I appreciated.  –M.V

Giveaway, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Three Stars

I smell snow…

I know it’s crazy, but snow makes me so happy and we haven’t had enough of it in my neck of the woods this year. Cold and I aren’t always on good terms, but snow and I go way back. Lorelai Gilmore, Me, Kelsey Patrick from Hayley Wescott’s “A Snow Globe Christmas”… all the cool people know snow is magical and it’s not Christmas without it.

“Kelsey Patrick is homesick for the snow and family Christmas tree from her childhood in Connecticut. The holidays are coming and South Florida weather is lovely, but it’s not what she wants for Christmas. She’s making the best of it, but she expects her Christmas to be un-snowy and lonely.

When she receives a lovely and thoughtful last minute Secret Santa gift from Mrs. Claus, Kelsey’s Christmas spirit is revived. When she tries to find the one who gave her the gift under the guise of Mrs. Claus, she makes an assumption that leads her down the wrong path.

Brett Taylor is firmly seated in the friend zone and knows Kelsey is making a mistake, but he’s in no position to try to change her mind.

Just when both Brett and Kelsey are set to spend their holidays working and alone, a chain of events just might change all that. And maybe Mrs. Claus will see her sweet work behind the scenes bring two love birds together at last.”

Hayley Wescott is a new to me author and though I loved the plot idea, I felt like the timing was a little off. Important things felt rushed and non important details got a little too much focus.  The characters had great potential and I liked the glimpses we were given, but would’ve liked to see them developed a little more. It was a quick Christmas read with a sweet ending.

 

 

 

Hayley Wescott loves a sweet love story with the emphasis on the sweet. As a Christian author, she’s happy and fulfilled to write stories about real life that don’t include cringe-worthy moments or details a reader doesn’t really want.

Some of Hayley’s stories are about real life. Contemporary stories about flawed people and people that have issues. But each of these stories is resolved in a positive way and the guy always gets the girl.

As part of the Hero Hearts group, Hayley loves writing about heroes who will save the day in big ways and small ones. With Annie Boone, who writes historical romance, and Kate Cambridge who writes both historical and contemporary romance, these three will deliver sweet stories that will capture your heart. Handsome men with big hearts and big jobs and the women who end up falling for them.

 

 

 

Giveaway Details

$25 Amazon Gift Code or $25 in PayPal Cash Enter Here: a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ends 1/6/19

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner may be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, BookBub, Instagram, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. This giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader & Clean Wholesome Romance and is sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

 

 

Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Three Stars

It Feels Like Christmas

A Christmas Carol is one of my favorite Christmas stories. I love the original stories and all the remakes, especially The Muppets, that one makes me happy.  When I saw that the first day of Clean Romance was a book entitled “Taming Scrooge” by an author whose name I’d seen, but hadn’t yet read anything by, I was pretty excited. I was pleasantly surprised when I realized I had read books by this author, just another a different name.

“Ezra Stone wishes Christmas would go away.
Star Henley wants to save it.

When a desperate city council, panicked about losing their iconic main street, urges Star Henley to charm her way into developer Ezra Stone’s life, they hope to change his mind, unaware they could break his heart.

If the small town, Sanders Corners, can’t save its tree festival and protect their Main Street festivities, her father’s tree business and her Christmas shop will go out of business along with the rest of the town. She can’t let that happen, even if it means ingratiating herself into the cold, hard life of their town’s one and only billionaire nemesis. When a conniving city council forces them to work together on the festival of trees, the two clash as often as they connect, but everything could change on December 25.”

The story was sweet and the characters were well developed, but the relationship seemed a bit rushed to me. It was not quite as detail oriented as the books I’ve read by the author under her regency name, but  it had some cute nods to the original story.  It’s a good book to pick up if you need a quick and light Christmas read.

Author Sophia Summers

Sophia Summers is an award-winning author who just wants to relax a little and enjoy a great beach read. She lives in a quiet southern town brimming with an extra dose of hospitality and a whole lot of charm.

She writes historical romance under a different name.


Giveaway Details

$25 Amazon Gift Code or $25 in PayPal Cash. Enter Here: a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ends 1/1/19

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner may be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, BookBub, Instagram, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. This giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader & Clean Wholesome Romance and is sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.