Friday, April 24, 2015

Review of "Every Bride Needs a Groom" by Janice Thompson

One of my favorite light hearted romantic comedy authors, Janice Thompson has herself a winner with her latest, "Every Bride Needs a Groom" - the first in the 'Brides with Style' series. Our heroine, Katie, loves everything about weddings and has been planning hers for practically forever. She comes from a small Texas town and is sure that her long time boyfriend is the one. She even goes as far as to enter a contest to win a custom wedding dress - and wins!

However, the boyfriend takes a job in another city without mentioning it to her and then promptly breaks up, and her plans are all turned upside down. Enter numerous fun extended family members in Dallas (aka the BIG city) and new friends at the bridal shop, and the story takes off.

This is a fun and touching story of how to adjust when things change - and they just may turn out even better than they were before. I can easily recommend this book!

I received a copy of this book from Revell in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Review of "Buried Secrets" by Irene Hannon

The first book in her new "Men of Valor" series, author Irene Hannon provides an acceptable suspense story that introduces the first of the McGregor boys (the "Men of Valor.")

Mac McGregor is a former Navy SEAL turned detective, who is called to a local small town to assist in a suspected homicide investigation. A skeleton has been turned up by a construction crew preparing the land for building. His brothers (who presumably will be the focus of the next two books) are also introduced.

Police Chief Lisa Grant has left the big city and police department in Chicago for her own reasons and is settling in to her relatively new life with a slower pace. She and Mac have an instant connection and begin to work together to solve the case. Turns out the body was buried years ago, and someone is very desperate to ensure that no one discovers the real reason why.

I enjoyed this story and can recommend it to anyone who enjoys solving a good mystery with just enough suspense to keep you engaged. I received this book from Revell Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Review of "The Legacy" by Dan Walsh & Gary Smalley

The final book in the Restoration Series, co-authored by Dan Walsh & Gary Smalley, focuses on youngest son Doug. He has been somewhat of a peripheral character in the previous books, but in this one we see more about his life and what has been going on in his head. And it's not good.

Doug is away fro home at college and not only dabbles on the edge of what he knows is right; his heart feels entitled, and his family annoys him. His friends want nothing to do with the faith of his family and continually pull him in the opposite direction. However, Doug's pulling away doesn't just affect him, it ripples to his parents and siblings, and especially to his friend Christina. She cares deeply for him but is convinced he could never feel the same.

A loose re-telling of the story of the Prodigal, Doug will soon have to choose between what he knows is right and what he wants at the moment.

I have followed this series closely and enjoyed each book. This one, although still good, was not my favorite. I felt that Doug had a bland personality and therefore I was less interested in finding hope for his future. The ending was as expected and very fast. I didn't see a build up and true change of his heart. I can easily recommend these authors, as I have read most (if not all) of their books and have enjoyed them all. "The Legacy" was simply not a favorite for me.

I received this book from Revell Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Review of "The Creole Princess" by Beth White

Book 2 in the Gulf Coast Chronicles, this story focuses on Lyse Lanier, a Creole girl with spunk and passion. Set in 1776 in Mobile and New Orleans, the Colonies are finding their place in the fight for independence. Lyse is best friends with the British Commander's daughter (and she is the daughter of the town drunk.) Fiercely loyal, Lyse soon meets Don Rafael Maria Gonzales de Ripparda, a charming and supposed merchant from New Orleans. She quickly finds her loyalties put to the test as the political climate (slavery? independence? social standing?) is rapidly changing and she is growing up.

Although I struggled to really engage in this book at first, I am really glad I stuck it out. The author's telling of the time rings true and she weaves a great deal of historical fact in to the story in a natural way. I recommend this book and am looking forward to reading more from this author.

I was given a copy of this book by Revell publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Review of "Trisha's Table" by Trisha Yearwood

Trisha Yearwood has always been really interesting to me. I've admired her as a singer for years and periodically watch Trisha's Southern Kitchen on the Food Network, so I was excited to check out this cookbook. I surprised myself however, when I literally read it from cover to cover. In one sitting.

Broken into categories of: Breakfast, Snacks & Appetizers, Soups & Salads, Beef & Pork, Chicken, Turkey, & Fish, Pasta, Sides, Cakes, Cupcakes, & Pies, and Cookies, Brownies, Bars, & more. She offers tips throughout including ways to convert tools, oven vs. microwave, quick tricks, and even how to make cashew cream! There were at least 25 recipes I am excited to try immediately (and that is unusual for me so you can imagine my enthusiasm).

I particularly enjoyed that this is real food for anyone, truly - and her simple directions imply that anyone could prepare these dishes successfully. She also includes fun family stories and pictures, and is very transparent about her feelings about food. There are also conversion suggestions for improved health. :)

It is easy to say that I recommend this book!

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.