#BookReview: This Is Not How It Ends by Rochelle B. Weinstein

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Reviewer: Annie Horsky McDonnell

Date Of Release: January 1st, 2020

Summary:

From USA Today bestselling author Rochelle B. Weinstein comes a moving novel of hearts lost and found, and of one woman torn between two love stories.

When Charlotte and Philip meet, the pair form a deep and instant connection. Soon they’re settled in the Florida Keys with plans to marry. But just as they should be getting closer, Charlotte feels Philip slipping away.

Second-guessing their love is something Charlotte never imagined, but with Philip’s excessive absences, she finds herself yearning for more. When she meets Ben, she ignores the pull, but the supportive single dad is there for her in ways she never knew she desired. Soon Charlotte finds herself torn between the love she thought she wanted and the one she knows she needs.

As a hurricane passes through Islamorada, stunning revelations challenge Charlotte’s loyalties and upend her life. Forced to reexamine the choices she’s made, and has yet to make, Charlotte embarks on an emotional journey of friendship, love, and sacrifice—knowing that forgiveness is a gift, and the best-laid plans can change in a heartbeat.

This Is Not How It Ends is a tender, moving story of heartbreak and healing that asks the question: Which takes more courage—holding on or letting go?

Review:

There’s nothing like reading a book and feeling like I am walking alongside the main character. That is exactly what Rochelle Weinstein brings to life in “This Is Not How It Ends”!!

Every moment in Charley’s life was so beautifully written that I felt truly touched every time she was affected, changed, elated or hurt by anything. My skin would tingle, tears would flow down my cheeks, I’d need to breathe deeply, I’d pet my dogs more! They loved me reading this book! This is how visceral it was! I was there! It was an experience!

I think every woman will find a piece of herself in this story. I was in love with Charley!

The relationship with her Mother touched my soul. The love triangle created was palpable! Intense! Lovely!

Rochelle Weinstein is a truly gifted storyteller. She writes for our hearts, to our hearts!  Oh….Also! You’ll find yourself stopping to write down quotes and take notes….It’s that Awesome!!

5 Stars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#BookReview: No Time for Goodbyes (No Brides Club, #7) by Christina Butrum

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Reviewer : Serena Soape

Release Date: November 1st, 2019

Summary:

When six friends make a pact not to let love get in the way of their careers, the No Brides Club is born. But could meeting the right man at the wrong time cause them to break their vows to each other?

Brooke Collins thought she had everything she wanted. Since relocating from her small town to work as an Oncology Nurse at one of Manhattan’s most respected children’s hospitals, she’s worked hard to make a life for herself in the big city. When a life-threatening emergency takes place back home, every choice she has made in the past three years is suddenly called into question.

As a firefighter, Austin Jensen knows how to handle a fire, but that doesn’t help when dealing with old flames. When his ex comes back to town and old feelings begin to resurface, he begins to wonder if the connection between them is worth risking getting burned again.

Sparks fly in this sweet, second chance romance as Brooke finds new reasons to stay in Lawson Heights and leave her life in the city behind while Austin remains unsure of what their future may be. Should they fan the flames or douse them with water and walk away for good?

Review:

Christina Butrum has once again written a sweet and from the heart romance with “No Time for Goodbyes”.

Brooke has life all figured out until she must head back home. When things feel like they are upside down, she is able to find some stability with Austin.

In the midst of making these decisions, it seems like they were always meant to be, but is she willing to uproot her life, abandon the No Brides Club and start life with Austin. You will have to read to find out.

This was my first read in The No Brides Club, so it can definitely be read as a stand alone. However, I am anxious to read the others !!!!

I have read many of Butrum’s books and all of them have been great !!!!

I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for fair and honest review

4 Stars.

#BookReview: Memory House by Bette Lee Crosby

Reviewer: Serena Soape

84962035-138A-4837-A2EF-00C26B567402Summary:

IS IT POSSIBLE FOR A MEMORY TO OUTLIVE ITS OWNER?

Ophelia Browne knows the answer is yes. She knows because she’s been granted the unique gift of finding and caring for those forgotten memories. But now she’s nearing ninety, and Browne women seldom live beyond ninety.

Before time runs out Ophelia must find a successor. Someone who can take hold of the gifts and keep the memories from fading.

When broken-hearted Annie Cross shows up on the doorstep of The Memory House Bed and Breakfast, Ophelia knows she is the one. The two women forge a bond of friendship as they sip magical dandelion tea and share stories. When Annie starts to sense the memories Ophelia is delighted, but then a thread of violence begins to unravel and Ophelia fears things have gone too far.

Review:

I picked up “Memory House” yesterday and could not put it down until I had finished.

Who needs sleep when you are reading Bette Lee Crosby?

I loved the story of Annie’s life and how all of the characters were developed. The moment when I heard names that I recognized was a turning point for me. I was surprised to hear that characters from other Bette Lee Crosby novels were part this story. I thoroughly enjoyed that!! It was a Wow moment for me!!

Ophelia was someone that I wished that I could meet in person. What a sweet woman.

I had times where I was a little sad but then the happy moments that balanced them out!

I am anxious to read the next book in this Series.

I would absolutely recommend that you read this book, as well as her other books.

5 Stars.

#BookReview: Katie Lyn’s Guarded Heart (Sweethearts of Country Music #4) by Marie Savage

Reviewer: Serena Soape

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Summary:

Book Release Date: September 27, 2019

When six musicians come together to form an all-girl country band, The Sweethearts of Country Music are born. But can they balance their musical worlds with their personal lives?

Lead singer, Katie Lyn Bishop, is ready for her first holiday in her new home in Nashville and she can’t wait to spend it with her three-year-old daughter, Madison. Unfortunately, her ex-husband, Trevor shows up after a four-year absence, suing for custody of their daughter, not to mention a hefty chunk of Katie Lyn’s profits.
The band’s attorney, Alec O’Donnell, assures her that’s not going to happen. But Alec’s interest is more than professional. He and Katie Lyn have a past—and there are skeletons in his closet that are best left in the dark. As he goes to battle against her ex, he worries his personal feelings will interfere with protecting her in court—and that if she finds out the truth, it could ruin everything.

Swirling rumors have the media targeting Katie Lyn wanting answers. Can Alec protect her? Will the secrets destroy not only her relationship with Alec, but the entire safety nest she’s built for her and Madison? Or is Alec exactly what she needs to truly make her new house a home?

The Sweethearts of Country Music series includes six books by six different authors. Each novel features a member of the band as she struggles to balance music and love.

Review:

Marie Savage’s Novel “Katie Lyn’s Guarded Heart” was such a sweet and entertaining story. While Katie Lyn had a complicated past and emotional relationships the story was heartfelt and at times both intense and poignant.

Katie Lyn’s life was not easy but she overcame so much…….

Marie Savage is very talented at character development, you’d enjoy getting to know her characters.

I finished this book in one night and was pleasantly surprised with the ending.

I have read a number of her books and definitely recommend them.

I received this ARC from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

4 Stars.

#BookReview: Room for Two (Maple Glen #4) by Christina Butrum

Reviewer: Serena Soape

5C7BD6E0-69B7-471E-A425-C48C42D84413Summary:

Catie Mitchell has always dreamed of one day owning a successful Bed and Breakfast.

When an opportunity to purchase a house with plenty of flaws and plenty of potential presents itself, she knows the project is meant for her.

What should’ve been a simple project soon proves to be much more of a challenge than she’d bargained for.

Ethan Davis isn’t a fan of small towns. He loves his life in the city.

When his grandfather asks him to visit Maple Glen to help with a project, he’s determined to get it over with and return to his home in the city.

What should’ve been a simple project gets more complicated when he meets who he’ll be working with—a feisty blonde trying to make something out of nothing.

When two complete opposites are forced to see eye to eye in this sweet, enemies to lovers romance, will Catie’s dream of owning a Bed and Breakfast become a reality? Or will two clashing personalities cause the project to collapse altogether?

Review:

I was excited to be back in Maple Glen with Fran and the rest of the small town folks. This town is known for romance with matchmaking Fran and her coffee shop. This fits the bill perfectly.

Catie and Ethan’s story is an unlikely match and I must admit that I was not sure how this would end. Catie is such a fun and likeable character. I wanted to tell Ethan to straighten up a few times and do the right thing.

Christina Butrum is a great author that continues to entertain me with her books.

This is a part of the Maple Glen Series and I would recommend that you read the other books, if possible; so that you get the backstory on the characters.

I received an ARC of this book from the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

4 Stars.

 

#BookReview: Desperately Seeking Househusband (Reality of Love #3) by Marika Ray

Reviewer: Serena Soape

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Release Date: September 18th, 2019

I’m fake dating my ex’s brother…all on national television.

Gabby
I just needed a fake boyfriend to be on the reality show Desperate Househusbands with me to prove once and for all I was over my evil ex and living my best life.
Too bad the only guy willing to do the job turned out to be my ex’s half-brother.
Dimples are my kryptonite and he’s got two of them.

Rhett
I was intrigued by her before I knew who she was.
And I admit, I signed up for the fake boyfriend position because I was curious how someone so successful could have dated my asshole brother.
Maybe it’s the way her edges soften at night when she cuddles up to me.
Or maybe it’s watching her rebuild her confidence brick by brick.
Maybe it’s just the goats stirring up repressed sexual desire.
Either way, I have feelings. Real ones.
Which is a bummer when my brother, the wrecking ball, comes back through the door, ruining everything we fought so hard for.
Where’s a goat to rekindle the flames when you need one?

Desperately Seeking Househusband is the third sexy RomCom stand-alone novel in the Reality of Love series.

Review:

Marika Ray has written another entertaining rom-com. I found myself laughing out loud at many of the scenes in the book. The characters were both likeable and relatable.

I enjoyed watching the development of Rhett and Gabby’s relationship.

Definitely a must read if you want to laugh.

This is the third book in the Reality of Love Series, but all can be read as stand alone.

I received an ARC of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

4 Stars.

#BookReview: The Six: Scarlett by Samantha March

Reviewer: Serena Soape

A1F10BFF-62DE-409A-98F6-D7563FD0A7D2Summary:

Scarlett Walsh is twenty-something, single, and lonely in Chicago. Still reeling from an unexpected breakup that left her broken hearted, Scarlett relies heavily on her group of girlfriends to help heal and move forward. But her friendship with BFF and long-time roommate Tinsley Thompson has turned toxic, and Scarlett is on the brink of moving out – and causing more friction to the already rocky friendship. Wishing to avoid drama amongst their close group of girlfriends, Scarlett attempts to stay focused on her job as a vet tech and the excitement of being a first-time puppy mom instead of confronting Tinsley. The rift between the two friends continues to grow – until a dark secret is shared that will rock the decade-long besties.

This second book in a six-part girlfriend series continues the stories of Scarlett, Breely, Nora, Lauren, Kristy, Tinsley and Scarlett, and takes readers on six individual stories about relationships, career choices, personal conflict and the bond of friendship.

Review:

I had the pleasure of listening to the Audible version of this Samantha March’s novel, “The Six: Scarlett”. It was definitely entertaining.

This is the first of the Six Series books that I’ve read and I will most definitely be reading or listening to the others!!

Scarlett’s story is one that I am sure most of us could relate to, because I know that I did.
If you have or have had a best friend or a group of friends where you had a favorite bestie, then you will love this story!

Throughout the book we learn about the trials and tribulations, good and bad of the friendship between these six women.

I truly look forward to reading and learning about the other ladies in the rest of the Six Series.

5 Stars.

#BookReview: Change of Heart by Judith Keim

Chang of HeartSummary:

Emerson “Em” Jordan always wanted a Valentine’s Day wedding. But after being dumped by her boyfriend, she spends the holiday at Seashell Cottage on the Gulf Coast of Florida with Devin Gerard, a family friend who has no interest in her or any other woman and is instead concentrating on his pediatric medical practice and continuing medical missions in Costa Rica.

Em, who’s always wanted a large family, doesn’t mind his disinterest. At thirty-two, she’s decided she doesn’t need a husband to have a child or to adopt one. First, she’s going to fulfill her dream of setting up her own landscape design business in upstate New York and has promised to continue to help run her grandmother’s flower shop.

It isn’t until Em and Devin become friends that Em realizes she might want more than friendship from him. But with his work in Miami and Costa Rica and her busy life in New York, it’s out of the question until something happens that changes everything, even a couple of hearts.

Review:

I melted. I cannot believe the amount of emotion this story had me feeling. I was literally sitting alone at an airport restaurant and cried!! I cried!! Judith Keim really knows how to tell a story that hits your heart and pulls at its strings. I was really surprised by this story. I did not expect the ending, which was amazing! There is nothing better than that!

I was so in love with Emerson “Em” Jordan and the rest of her family; especially her grandmother, Julia. Their relationship was just so beautiful. This is a multigenerational story that has a lot going on in each person’s life and that makes it very exciting to read. I never wanted to put it down.

Her sister, Elena is a trip!! Sending Em to Seashell Cottage…with a man; none the less…There was no plan there! None! Or was there?

I highly recommend this story and I cannot wait to read the next Seashell Cottage Story/Judith Keim Novel. I am officially a fan!!

I was given a copy of this book by the author in exchange for a fair and honest review.

5 Stars.

#Bookreview: The view from Alameda Island by Robyn Carr

1E3B1D4E-B3AF-46E4-8901-7A8AA58F36B3Summary:

From the outside looking in, Lauren Delaney has a life to envy—a successful career, a solid marriage to a prominent surgeon and two beautiful daughters who are off to good colleges. But on her twenty-fourth wedding anniversary Lauren makes a decision that will change everything.

Lauren won’t pretend things are perfect anymore. She defies the controlling husband who has privately mistreated her throughout their marriage and files for divorce. And as she starts her new life, she meets a kindred spirit—a man who is also struggling with the decision to end his unhappy marriage.

But Lauren’s husband wants his “perfect” life back and his actions are shocking. Facing an uncertain future, Lauren discovers an inner strength she didn’t know she had as she fights for the love and happiness she deserves.

Review:

This story is about the struggle of leaving a marriage behind; no matter how cruel a spouse can be, and no matter how toxic a relationship is.

Lauren meets Beau who is having similar issues and wanting to leave his marriage as well, so they form a friendship that soon starts to lean towards more.

But, can that happen with Lauren’s spouse still lingering so close by?

There is the family dynamic with the children and who they each side with, and the friends along the way.

I found that this story dragged a bit in few places and I got a little bored sometime; I have to be honest. Maybe I just didn’t really feel attached to many other characters. But, my interest in the outcome for Lauren was enough!

3 Stars.

pro_readerI would like to thank the publishers for sending me an ARC of this Novel via NetGalley

 

#BookReview: Trophy Life by Lea Geller

Trophy LifeSummary:

A refreshingly honest, laugh-out-loud novel about losing the life you always wanted…and finding the life you were meant to have.

For the last ten years, Agnes Parsons’s biggest challenge has been juggling yoga classes and lunch dates. Her Santa Monica house staff takes care of everything, leaving Agnes to focus on her trophy-wife responsibilities: look perfect, adore her older husband, and wear terribly expensive (if uncomfortable) underwear.

When her husband disappears, leaving Agnes and their infant daughter with no money, no home, and no staff, she is forced to move across the country, where she lands a job teaching at an all-boys boarding school in the Bronx. So long, organic quinoa bowls and sunshine-filled California life. Hello, processed food, pest-infested house, and twelve-year-old-boy humor—all day, every day.

But it’s in this place of second chances (and giant bugs), where Agnes is unexpectedly forced to take care of herself and her daughter, where she finds out the kind of woman she can be. Ultimately, she has to decide if she prefers the woman and mother she has become…or the trophy life she left behind.

Authentic and sharply witty, Trophy Life is proof that granny panties and mom coats might not be the answer to everything; they’re simply comfortable (if slightly unattractive) reminders of what happens when one life ends…and real life begins.

Review:

Lea Geller’s debut novel is aces! I have no doubt that women everywhere are going to love this book. The heroine Agnes “Aggie” Parsons is 110% one of my favorite fictional characters to come along in a long time. She was beyond likable for so many reasons. She is presented with losing it all and having to fight back and you cannot help but cheer for her the whole way through.

Agnes’s husband Jack disappears one day and his closest friend, “Don” tells her not to call the police. Her husband is in real trouble and he just needs time to fix it, and there is a plan she just needs to stay away from him for the time being.

The next day she is told to move to New York; all the way from the comforts of her plush home in sunny Santa Monica, to go teach English at a boarding school for boys. Mind you, it has housing and day care for their 6-month-old daughter, Grace. She is to get across the country by driving a used beat up car, because her fancy car is now gone. There will be no nanny, no housekeeper, no lovely home on the cliffs overlooking the Pacific anymore for Agnes. Most importantly, there will be no husband to look out for her. Agnes will only have herself to count on.

Will she be able to fend for herself in this whole new world in the Bronx, New York?
This is a fantastically written tale! I went in to this story thinking I was reading a chick lit book, but there is a deeper story going on at the boarding school that I found so intriguing.

I wasn’t just rooting for Agnes; I was rooting for her students, as well.
For a read that you will absolutely fall in love with, I highly recommend “Trophy Life”!
I know that Lea Geller made it on to my favorite author hot list! I’m anxiously awaiting her next novel!

5 Stars. (too bad I cannot give more)

pro_readerI would like to thank the publishers for sending me an ARC of this Novel via NetGalley.