Thursday, September 26, 2019

review: the duchess in his bed by lorraine heath

This post contains affiliate links.

When Selena's husband died, they'd yet to have a child which means Selena won't receive much of an inheritance. With her parents deceased and her brother not exactly reliable, Selena worries about her sisters' futures. That's why Selena and her less than scrupulous brother hatch a plan for Selena to quickly conceive and pass the baby off as her husband's. It was a great plan until Selena actually started to fall for Aiden Trewlove who runs the club that indulges the desired of wealthy women.

The fourth Sins for All Seasons novel proves just as sexy as the previous books, but also shows the many downsides of the societal rules of the time. Although those rules are the reason Selena acts as she does, there are times when Selena is just a little too in league with her disgraceful brother which makes it hard to root for her and Aiden. Aiden has some pretty great moments though, especially when he's with his family.
4/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Avon.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

review: the crazy school by cornelia read

This post contains affiliate links.

The Crazy School is the second of the Madeline Dare series, but can be read as a standalone as much of Madeline’s backstory is filled in. This mystery is very slow to get going with the first half of the novel setting up what’s been happening at the boarding school where Madeline is now a teacher. Even without the mystery, the setup is interesting as Madeline struggles with her new job. The students are difficult to say the least and her boss makes the teachers attend group therapy and follow the same restrictions as the students. Once the mystery finally gets going, it’s a bit of a rollercoaster with Madeline being framed but also poisoned and a very dark turn for the true culprit.
4/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Grand Central Publishing.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

review: mine by courtney cole

This post contains affiliate links.

As a hurricane approaches, a different sort of storm is about to hit Tessa Taylor's house. It all begins when Tessa has to use her husband's iPad because their teenage daughter took Tessa's to her grandparents' house. If not for that simple act of a teenager, Tessa may have never seen the nude pictures of a woman her husband is clearly having an affair with. With the rest of the family out of town, Tessa seizes the opportunity to meet the other woman. From that moment, there is danger at every turn the hurricane traps the two clearly unhinged women in Tessa's home. Mine by Courtney Cole is a wild ride filled with twists as the dual storms rage and revenge is sought. Every chapter reveals another shock.
4/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Gallery.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

review: gimme some sugar by molly harper

This post contains affiliate links.

When Lucy Bowman's husband unexpectedly died, she didn't exactly become a grieving widow; her husband had repeatedly cheated and she was considering divorce. Lucy's mother-in-law won't hear any of it, so she's out to make Lucy's life miserable as Lucy tries to start a bakery and move on with Duffy McCready.

Although Lucy might not be doing much grieving, others are in Gimme Some Sugar which makes this book not as fun and light-hearted as the previous two in the Southern Eclectic series. There's also some repetition of plot points as Duffy's ex and Lucy's mother-in-law are both one note villains who keep getting in the way of Lucy and Duffy's budding relationship.
4/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Gallery.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

review: before i go by colleen oakley

This post contains affiliate links.

At just 27 Daisy learns that the breast cancer she thought she beat three years ago has now spread throughout her body. The doctor says she likely only has months to live. But Daisy has much to do—she and her husband have a fixer-upper house and both are working on graduate degrees. Daisy initially tries to live her life normally, but soon her focus shifts to finding a new wife for her husband, who she believes can’t possibly take care of himself.

With a terminal cancer patient as the protagonist, it seemed Before I Go would be excruciatingly sad; it wasn’t. That’s partly because Daisy doesn’t wallow in her diagnosis and partly because Daisy is slightly annoying in her fixation on insignificant things like drinking the organic kale smoothies she believed kept her healthy. Because Before I Go centers wholly on Daisy finding a wife for Jack (who as an adult about to be a veterinarian should be capable of taking care of himself—I had trouble with this plot because it just seemed so insulting to Jack), the story drags at times with Daisy not taking any action on her plan but still going on and on about it. The final chapter was incredibly touching though.
3/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Gallery.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

review: soul survivor by bruce & andrea leininger with ken gross

This post contains affiliate links.

Shortly after moving to a new home and only weeks after her son’s second birthday, Andrea Leininger heard her son screaming from a terrible nightmare. The nightmares continued and James began telling his parents that he’d been a pilot who’d perished after his plane was shot down in World War II. According to his parents, there was no way for James to know the details he did, but the information was verifiable. James’s father, Bruce, struggled with the idea of reincarnation due to his religious background, but eventually accepted that his son had a past life. The process that it took for Andrea and Bruce to come to terms with the reincarnation is detailed in the book they coauthored with Ken Gross. Soul Survivor is quick read documenting the struggles the family had as they looked into the cause of James’s nightmares. Assuming there’s no embellishment here, it’s truly a remarkable story. The writing is a little awkward though as it shifts from third person to first person diary entries from the two parents. A lot of the details are repeated and unnecessary anecdotes are shared which all detract from the main story.
3/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Grand Central Publishing.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

review: the a list by j.a. jance

This post contains affiliate links.

Although The A List is the fourteenth book in the Ali Reynolds series, it goes back in time to when Ali was still reporting for a Los Angeles TV station. Ali covered the story of a fertility doctor who was using his own sperm to impregnate patients. The truth came out when one of his offspring needed a kidney transplant. As The A List unfolds, Ali experiences many life changes (losing her TV job, getting divorced, and starting the life that readers of the series are now familiar with) and loses touch with the people who were involved in what turned out to be her final news story. But that doesn’t mean the doctor has forgotten about her or any of the others who he believes caused his downfall. Despite being convicted of killing his first target (his ex-wife), Edward is determined to have everyone else killed as well. His list, of course, includes Ali.

The A List was a bit slow to get started as it had to set up all the plot points and give a lot of backstory. Once everything was established, the story began to take off with Edward orchestrating murders from behind bars. It’s all fairly predictable though and relies a bit too much on the new AI, Frigg, that Ali’s team is using.
4/5
Review copy provided by the publisher, Gallery Books.