Review | All I want for Christmas by Claudia Carroll

All I want for Christmas

Title: All I want for Christmas
Author: Claudia Carroll
Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction, Chick Lit, Short Story
Publishing date: 25th November, 2014
Published by: Avon
Pages: 21

My Rating: 2/5 stars  

 


Synopsis:

Christmas with the one you love. It’s going to be perfect … isn’t it?

Three couples. Three Christmases. One perfect day!

In three days Lucy and Andrew will to fly to Mexico for their beautiful wedding. What’s a twenty-year age gap when you’re this in love? Christmas dinner feels like the perfect occasion to introduce the two families to each other. What could possibly go wrong?

Workaholic Jo Hargreaves spends most of her Christmas day wondering where her unreliable new husband is.

Dawn and Kirk spend hours slaving over a mung-bean based vegan festive lunch – but Dawn’s mum is struggling to keep her true feeling to herself.

Can these three couples manage the magical Christmas they’ve been dreaming of?


My Take:

It’s a quick and easy read. The summary is very intriguing. I was really looking forward to reading it. What I didn’t realize was that this was a prequel to another book- Love me or Leave me.

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So, we get a glimpse of all the three stories, the Christmas time in the lives of these 3 couples. As prequels go this book did the job right of building the excitement for the actual book. 😀

I really want to know where the stories go. All the couples visit the first ever divorce hotel in the book Love me or Leave me. That’s interesting! 😀

A proper disclaimer about this being a prequel, actually teaser, should have been given. :/ It was a huge disappointment on that part but then again it wasn’t that long so it was okay.


Why would I pick it up?

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To build up excitement if I was reading the actual book.

 

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Review | Chasing Nathan by Jeanette Hubbard

Chasing Nathan

 

Title: Chasing Nathan
Author: Jeanette Hubbard
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Mystery &Thrillers
Publisher: Promontory Press

Publishing date: 7th June, 2016
Pages: 192

My Rating: 3/5 stars

 

*e-copy received from the author/publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*


Synopsis:

Jeanette Hubbard’s humorous style of suspense writing has been compared to Carl Hiaasen and Janet Evanovich. In this quirky follow-up novel, a chance encounter in a remote forest campground plunges plucky retiree Claudie O’Brien into a vortex of crime, kidnapping, and a marijuana hijacking. A pleasant dinner with Nathan, the gentleman at the next campsite, is disrupted by the arrival of a very loud and a very angry young man. The next morning both Nathan and the man are gone, but Claudie suspects something is not right. No one believes her when she tells them that Nathan might be in danger. It’s up to Claudie to connect the dots and find out why Nathan disappeared in the middle of the night.


My Take:

I started the book late at night deciding to read only 2 chapters before going to bed but I ended up reading THE WHOLE BOOK!

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The reason being the easy paced writing. Perfect for even when you are tired and sleepy. 😀 It being only 192 pages was helpful too. 😛

I don’t remember reading many novels where the main characters were in their senior years. So, this was a refreshing and fun read in that sense. I was a bit worried in the start because I wasn’t sure if I would like reading a senior point of view but I really did enjoy it. It was a bit slow in the start but then it just all got together and I couldn’t keep the book down.

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Both the main characters Claudie and Nathan somehow get involved in a dope deal gone wrong situation. Again their age kinda sets the tone for the book for me because all they wanted to do was have a nice time camping. They were too, until Hammer came up and parked near them at the campground. The thugs are not the brightest bulbs and their decisions are stupid and actions comical.

Nathan ends up being kidnapped. When Claudie finds him missing, she suspects foul play and sets out for help, not before taking in a poor canine and befriending him who in turn makes the thugs chase Claudie.

As the new characters were added the story kept on getting more and more interesting and the reading became more easier which is always a plus. 😀 As I read this book when I was sleepy I didn’t mark out anything to share with you guys but you can always read it and see for yourself, right?

This is surely a different plotline and I loved it for that. ❤ The short read and easy pace, good narrative, the touch of humor, growing feelings, the drama and mystery tied up the book in a nice, lovely bundle of read. 😀 😀


Why would I pick it up?

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For a quick read with an unexpected character base and plotline. 😀

 

 

Blog Tour | Book Review | Better in the Morning by Fern Ronay

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Click on the banner to see the complete tour schedule. 😀

Welcome to my stop of the blog tour for the book “Better in the Morning” by Fern Ronay , hosted by Sage’s Blog Tours.

Let’s get on with the review, shall we?:)


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Title: Better in the Morning
Author: Fern Ronay
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing

Publishing date: 26th April, 2016
Pages: 280

My Rating: 4/5 stars

 


Summary:

Veronica Buccino has a plan: marry John DelMonico and quit her soul-sucking job as a lawyer.And when he tells her he has big news, she’s certain he’ll pop the question. But instead of
proposing, John informs her that he’s moving to London.

Heartbroken, Veronica feels lost. Salvatore and Antoinette, her dead grandparents, begin to visit her dreams in an attempt to steer her in the right direction. At their suggestion, Veronica takes a news reporting class, which leads to a challenging freelance assignment covering a conspiracy trial. She also begins dating an unlikely suitor: creative Syd Blackman.

Just when her love life and career are looking up, Veronica is tossed back to square one by an event that makes her question all her new choices.


My Take:

I had mixed feelings in the middle of the book but other than that this was a very enjoyable book for me. 😉

When I started this book, I couldn’t keep this drama-packed story down. As the book reached the middle I started doubting the potential of the book because of the story going nowhere and giving no exact hints to what the book was exactly about. It kind of felt that the story was dragging with no exact goals. Veronica kept on messing up things back to back. I actually put it down, read another book and picked this back up. Good decision, I must say. 😀

She was kind of pathetic in the start.

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I like, how her character development takes place through and through. 🙂

I am glad that I took a break instead of reading it in one sitting. Because when I came back to this book it did not disappoint me at all. It was like meeting a friend after a long time and realizing that you missed them more than you thought.

The message this book puts across is about happiness, about finding your true calling, and about working for it. I love fictions with such positive messages. 😀 You know what would have been bold for this book, bold and unconventional, if Syd didn’t realize he couldn’t stay without Veronica and he loved her and she moved on with her life. I guess, women’s fiction needs to always have some or the other cliche. I am not complaining, no!

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By the time I reached the end of the book, I kind of felt that this was going to have that bomb unconventional ending that leaves the readers gaping because of how unfocused that part of her life was. It was a simple mention like, it’s been a month since she last talked to him. Nothing too filled with emotions to make me think that he was important at that point in the book. But we all need a happy ending, so the author gives you that. 😉

This book would’ve been something else if only Veronica spoke her mind. I swear, I would’ve loved her for saying the things she thought. 😀 Here are some examples-

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Now, this start of the explanation that Veronica’s grandpa gives her for them giving her signs without knowing the future kind of made me scratch my head. Like, you can’t see the future but six months ago you knew that Veronica would be here and she would need to see your sign. How exactly does that work?

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I loved this line…

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…and this was just ❤ A perfect way to sum up the plotline and the title accuracy. ❤

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All in all, this was a good book, that kept challenging how I felt about the book. It’s a good read on how a person develops and learns from their mistakes and wrong decisions and moves forward. No matter what, the future is always bright for those who learn to trust it’s ability to make everything alright. 😀 😉


Why would I pick it up?

For the drama and the lessons and ofcourse, for Hurricane Veronica! 😛 😛


Author’s Bio:

Fern Ronay was born and raised in Belleville, New Jersey. She is a lawyer and CPA as well as a writer, reporter, and blogger. After six years in Manhattan and six years in Chicago, she now lives in sunny Los Angeles with her husband.

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In addition to writing novels, Fern authors the blog Stop and Blog the Roses and is a co-host on AfterBuzzTV. When she is not writing, reporting, or blogging, Fern can be found eating something, reading something, or running.

Meet the author: | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | 

Review | Miss Goody Two-Shoes by Charlotte Hughes

Miss Goody Two-Shoes

 

Title: Miss Goody Two-Shoes
Author: Charlotte Hughes
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Chick Lit
Publishing date: 10th August, 2015
Pages: 216

My Rating: 4/5 stars

 

 

*ARC received from StoryCartel in exchange for an honest review*


Synopsis:

A Fresh Start . . .

Imprisoned for a crime he did not commit, Kane Stoddard was an angry, bitter man, until the sweet uplifting letters from Melanie Abercrombie painted a picture of a life he longed for. Now that his name has been cleared, he wants to start a new life and meet the woman who gave him hope when his situation seemed hopeless.

Fighting Her Impulses . . .

Mel doesn’t know what to make of the scruffy bearded Kane who rides up on his motorcycle. Her first thought is he escaped from prison and is dangerous. Stunned by their rapid and sizzling attraction, she tries to fight her impulses and hang on to her prim and proper lifestyle. Mel worries that Kane will leave her once he grows tired of a small town life where he is still treated as an outcast.


My Take:

This is a very sweet love story. Not those extremely cheesy types. This book also proves how lending an ear to listen and speaking a few kind words can give immense hope to someone in hopeless times, can be their light in darkness and can help them fight the evil off. 😉

Kane is convicted for a crime he didn’t commit. Mel is a prim and proper girl. She is a member of the church, through the church’s program she starts writing letters to Kane. Kane never replies but Mel never stops writing. Although Kane doesn’t reply to Mel’s letters, her letters keep him going. When he is released from the jail because the real convict is arrested he decides to meet and thank the woman who wrote him letters.

He drops unannounced at Mel’s place. First she mistakes him for a workman, when she realizes who he actually is, the first thing that comes to her mind is that Kane ran off. After all those misunderstandings being cleared, Kane is invited to stay with Mel and her dad. Mel’s little sister doesn’t like Kane and often passes snide remarks.

Mel has a boyfriend, who has a little girl. She loves the girl and they share a good bond. Mel helps street animals and has many of them in the backyard including a pig.

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With the turn of events, Kane and Mel start growing close. They get to know each other and start falling for each other.

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When everything is going right, there is supposed to be a fight like in every love story. After the big fight, towards the end of the book, Kane proposes and well, we get a happy ending! 😀 😉 😛

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The characters, the setting, the language was all very simple and engaging. It was a easy and fast-paced read. I really enjoyed Kane’s character. 😀


 

Why would I pick it up?

For the sweet, easy read and fast paced love story. 😀

 

Blog Tour | Review | A Wedding at the Paragraph Ranch by Kay Ellington & Barbara Brannon

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Click on the banner to see the complete tour schedule. 😀

Welcome to my stop of the blog tour for the book “A Wedding at the Paragraph Ranch” by Kay Ellington & Barbara Brannon, hosted by Sage’s Blog Tours.

Let’s get on with the review, shall we? 🙂 


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Title: A Wedding at the Paragraph Ranch (The Paragraph Ranch Series, Book 2)
Author: Kay Ellington & Barbara Brannon
Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Publishing date: 9th September, 2015
Published by: Booktrope Editions
Pages: 261

My Rating: 4/5 stars

 

 


Summary: 

Can she piece together a dream on a shoestring?

As new owner of the falling-apart family homestead in West Texas, Dee Bennett is wrangling ways to earn a living, mend fences with farm and family, and manifest her dreams as a writer—all while nurturing the budding relationship with her beau, outdoorsy photographer Max Miller. But when a drop-dead-gorgeous, high-powered handler for a candidate in a key statewide election blows into Claxton, rivalries bigger than politics and football develop. With stakes running high on the campaign trail, as well as in publishing dreams and love lives, a Bennett family wedding must be attended to. And Dr. Dee, with the assistance of her motley writing-group protégés, must search her soul and fend off a host of challenges to live the life she just might learn to love.


My Take:

I liked this book. I really did. First, the cover called out to me, then I checked out the blurb and the first line, “Can she piece together a dream on a shoestring?” was enough to commit me into reading this book. A good decision! 🙂

I liked the main protagonist, Dee, right from the start. Man, that woman’s energy is contagious! 😉 She takes up reporting the ongoing elections, a job at the library, takes care of the notorious goats that were gifted to her and her daughter’s cat, works on the plan of preparing her ranch for an event organized by her cousin, holds writing meet ups at her place, and tries to give enough time to her outdoorsy boyfriend and her mother while having time-to-time phone call conversations with her daughter. 😀

I loved how Dee took one day at a time. An approach to life that I highly appreciate. 😀

From the start you get the idea that there’s a mystery in the book that is going to make it worth your time. It was going hand in hand with the story and with the way Dee tackled everything made it more realistic.

Though I didn’t feel that the title connects much with the story because a wedding occurs only in the start of the pages. That too is a thing that Dee just attends with no more involvement than attendance with the wedding, I found it a bit out of phase. There also is another wedding at the very end of the book. Although, throughout the book, before every chapter, pieces of wedding rituals are mentioned but I read that in haste to get to the interesting story continuation the chapters provided. I think those pieces worked as a hinderance to me. I am not saying that it isn’t good, it sure is but I would have liked to read it if the complete book was about wedding. It just felt irrelevant to me like all the wonderful stuff happening in the book were kind of getting overshadowed.

This is the second book in the Paragraph Ranch series, that might be the reason why I don’t get the title connection but it works well as a standalone too. 🙂

The setting, the characters, the dialog, everything is so well written that I just went on devouring page after page. 😀 Although, I didn’t care much about the political mentions I really enjoyed the book and those writing meet ups were so interesting, it provided with stories within the story. I would really have loved to be a part of that group. 😛

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One of the scenes that touched my heart. 🙂


Why would I pick it up?

This is a sweet story about a woman trying to piece her life together but at the same time a very intelligent creation. 🙂


Author’s bio:

KAY ELLINGTON, a native West Texan, has worked in newspapers from New York to California to the Carolinas—and back again to Texas.

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BARBARA BRANNON formerly led the Publishing Laboratory at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, but got to Texas as soon as she could.

Meet the author: | Website | Twitter | Facebook | 

Get the book on: | Amazon|

 

 

 

Blog Tour | Review | Seeking the Star by Traci Borum

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Click on the banner to see the complete tour schedule. 😀

Welcome to my stop of the blog tour for the book “Seeking the Star” by Traci Borum, hosted by Sage’s Blog Tours.

Let’s get on with the review, shall we? 🙂 


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Title: Seeking the Star (Chilton Crosse #3)
Author: Traci Borum
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Christian Fiction
Publishing date: 6th October, 2015
Published by: Red Adept Publishing
Pages: 200

My Rating: 4/5 stars

 

 


Synopsis:

One December night, in the sleepy Cotswold village of Chilton Crosse, a drifter named Ben collapses on George and Mary Cartwright’s snow-covered doorstep. As Christmas cheer spreads throughout the village with a Dickens-themed festival, Mary nurses Ben back to health, but she becomes curious about the secrets he seems to carry.

On Christmas Eve, one of Ben’s secrets accidentally comes to light, forcing him to confront the darkness of his past and to rediscover the faith he once knew.


My Take:

This book is a perfect Christmas read. 😀 Complete with likeable town full of likeable characters and the ever present spirit for the festival. 😀

It’s a Christmasy tale of joy, sorrow, love, and redemption.

I knew I would love this book as soon as I started reading and I must say, I was right! 😀

The simplicity of everything in the book- the story, the plotline, the characters, the ease of mystery, the festival, everything just catches you on. You don’t have to pay special attention to get into the book, it is one of those light reads that take you out of the reading slump, like the one’s you read half a month ago and when you pick it up again you still remember the earlier half as if you read it today. Christmas celebrations, the Dicken’s Festival, were all there but they didn’t overpower the story of Ben and the Cartwright’s. The lose that all three of them suffered  brought them closer during the perfect snowy Christmas.

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The struggle of Ben wanting to leave and wanting normalcy is real. You feel connected to his struggle.

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When the Christmas eve comes, Ben plans to leave the Cartwright’s and the Cotswold village but in a turn of events he ends up revealing all his worries to Mary who guides him. Mary and George Cartwright are the sweet couple who you always feel safe talking to like the old and happy people of children’s book. I loved them for that.

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This is one of the quotes that I loved! ❤ ❤

When one of the female character’s was introduced at almost the end of the book, I felt like now we would get a romantic interest for Ben but well that wasn’t the case. 😛

I think all in all this book is a lovely tale that leaves you smiling. 😀


Why would I pick it up?

A sweet story on Christmas with a cup of hot chocolate? Yes please! ❤ ❤ A fast and peaceful read is what we require every now and then. This book is that read! 😀


Author’s Bio:

Traci Borum Profile PicTraci Borum is an insatiable bookworm whose first love is fiction.  As a little girl, she became mesmerized with books—with the textures, the smells, and most especially, the worlds created between the pages.  Years later, she discovered she could create her own worlds by writing.  She’s been scribbling away ever since, writing bits of poetry, articles, and especially fiction.

Traci has been a Creative Writing teacher at a community college for the past ten years.  She’s a native Texan and an Anglophile at heart.  She owns two “British” dogs—a Corgi and a Sheltie—and she’s completely addicted to Masterpiece Theater (must be those dreamy British accents!).  More than anything, she treasures the friendships in her life and adores her supportive family.

Meet the author: | Website | Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | 

Get the book on: | Amazon |

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