Friday, July 29, 2016

The Things We Keep by Sally Hepworth - Review


Anna Forster is only thirty-eight years old, but her mind is slowly slipping away from her. Armed only with her keen wit and sharp-eyed determination, she knows that her family is doing what they believe to be best when they take her to Rosalind House, an assisted living facility. But Anna has a secret: she does not plan on staying. She also knows there's just one another resident who is her age, Luke. What she does not expect is the love that blossoms between her and Luke even as she resists her new life. As her disease steals more and more of her memory, Anna fights to hold on to what she knows, including her relationship with Luke.

Eve Bennett, suddenly thrust into the role of single mother to her bright and vivacious seven-year-old daughter, finds herself putting her culinary training to use at Rosalind house. When she meets Anna and Luke, she is moved by the bond the pair has forged. But when a tragic incident leads Anna's and Luke's families to separate them, Eve finds herself questioning what she is willing to risk to help them. Eve has her own secrets, and her own desperate circumstances that raise the stakes even higher.

My Review:

A thought provoking and emotional tale that pulls you in from the very start.

The Things We Keep is told from three different points of view, Anna, Eve and Clementine. 

Anna is in her late 30s when she is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and is sent to live at Rosalind House, an assisted living facility.  While Anna struggles with the frustration of losing her memory as the disease progresses, she finds a friend, Luke who also has early-onset Alzheimer’s.  Together they form a bond that is inseparable.  No one believed people with Alzheimer’s could actually fall in love.  But Anna and Luke prove them wrong.      

Eve is a new employee at Rosalind House.  She recently lost her husband after a scandal that leaves all of the people she knows hating her.  She loses everything she had and takes a job at Rosalind House to support herself and her daughter.  There she meets Angus, the gardener who always seems to be around when she needs someone the most.  Will Eve be able to open up enough to allow love into her life again?

Clementine is Eve’s young daughter who is having the hardest time of all.  She struggles in school with her friends and the kids who say mean things about her father.  She soon spirals out of control.  But with the help of her mom, a therapist and the residents at Rosalind House she is able to accept some of the truth. 

Each character in the book has a special place in the story and it was interesting to see where they all fit in it.  I admit I didn’t know a lot about Alzheimer’s until I had a good friend with a father who had it.  Hearing her talk about how this debilitating disease is and how it takes over one’s life was heartbreaking.  I didn’t know anything about early-onset Alzheimer’s and after reading it from Anna’s point of view it really opened my eyes even more about this disease.  I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it to anyone who has been effected by Alzheimer’s, just curious about it, or if you are just looking for a different kind of love story.   

This quote in the book was the perfect tie in to the story and something I will not forget. 
“You don’t waste time with regrets.  In the end, you just remember the moments of joy.  When all is said and done, those are the things you keep.”

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Escape to the Riviera by Jules Wake - Review


**Lose yourself in the south of France this summer in this fabulously feel-good beach read!**

Carrie Hayes has a job she enjoys and a perfectly nice boyfriend. She’s sorted. Isn’t she?

But Carrie’s life wasn’t always like this. As a young,
wild drama student, she married fellow actor, Richard
Maddox, after a whirlwind romance. Life back then was
full of possibilities, but when Hollywood beckoned
Richard, Carrie was left behind.

Now an A-list superstar, Richard’s life couldn’t be more
different to Carrie’s, so when their paths cross in glamorous
St Tropez, she can’t help but wonder what might have been.

But with lovely, sensible Alan in tow, Carrie knows
she needs to do the right thing. The only problem is,
Carrie and Richard never quite got round to getting a divorce…

My Review:

Beautifully written and entertaining.  

In the light of her recent engagement, Carrie Hayes must face her past and the fact that she is still married to the popular Hollywood actor Richard Maddox.  Only Carrie's sister Angela knows she is married and spills the beans to Carrie's that her boyfriend planning to propose.  This sets Carrie in motion to find Richard and do what is long overdue, end the marriage. 

It was fate when Angela is offered the use of an estate in Côte D’Azure where Richard just happens to be filming his latest movie.  Carrie uses this opportunity to seek out the filming locations to find Richard.  After eight years of separation, it's time for a divorce.  But apparently Richard is still in love with Carrie and won’t give up that easy.  He gives her an ultimatum, spend two weeks with him and if she still wants a divorce after that, he will give it to her.  Their time together brings back a lot of memories for Carrie and she realizes she is still in love with Richard and their story isn't over yet. 

I really enjoy a good book that takes me on a journey to some exotic location.   Add this incredible story to that journey and I didn't want this book to end.   I admit it was the cover that got my attention first, but when I read the synopsis, I was intrigued and had to know what happens.  This book is a perfect addition to your summer reading list. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

Every Breath You Take by Christina Phillips - Review


She’s the one girl this bad boy could never have…

It was only supposed to be a forbidden one night stand with the bad boy she’d never forgotten, but Piper Thomas soon discovers it takes more than sizzling sex to scorch her teenage fantasies. The more he gives, the more she needs…

It’s been five years since Mason Hunter’s brother died, and he’s tried to put the guilt behind him. But when Piper, the girl his brother should’ve married, reappears in his life and offers him the one thing he’s always craved – one steamy night in her arms – he can’t resist.

Piper’s the only woman he’s ever wanted, but how can they have a future together when the past haunts every breath they take?

My Review:

A forbidden one night stand with her high school crush turns into something Piper Thomas never imagined possible. 

Piper was once engaged to Mason Hunter’s brother Colton, who died in a motorcycle accident five years ago.  She blames herself for Colton’s death because they broke up that night.  Mason blames himself for letting Colton take his bike knowing he had never been on one before.

Every year Colton’s parents have a get together with Piper on the anniversary of Colton’s death.  Mason has never been present for these get togethers, but this time he was.   Old thoughts and feelings are brought back to Piper.  Mason was her first crush.  Mason had been attracted to Piper since he first saw her, but she was off limits as she was his brother’s girlfriend.  When Piper was leaving the Hunter’s house she finds her car with a flat tire.  Mason is there to give her a ride home and offers to fix her car for her.  What begins as a ride home ends up being so much more.  The weeks that follow become something neither of them had ever imagined. 

A great story with likable characters and a good storyline made this book fun and quick to read.  Be sure to have a cool drink by your side as the intimate scenes are very realistic. 

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Flame (Firefighters of Montana Book 5) by Victoria Purman - Review


Cady Adams has had a crush on Dex McCoy since high school, but her ambitions were always bigger than the small Montana town they grew up in. In the years after, Cady headed to California and Dex ended up drifting from one job to another all over the US.

But when the rug is pulled from under her feet, Cady comes home to establish her business, Cady’s Cakes. What she doesn't know is a family tragedy has pulled Dex home, too, and he's taken a new job as a smokejumper.

Will they finally give in to what’s been burning between them for so long? Is the timing right to find out the dreamer and the drifter are really perfect for each other?

My Review: 

Another steamy hot Firefighters of Montana story.

When Cady Adams returns to Glacier Creek, she has no idea her high school crush Dex McCoy has returned as well.  In the past, their timing was never right.  They both had plans of leaving Montana as soon as they could. 

After school, Cady moved to California to go to culinary school.  She is home again and has established her own bakery, Cady's Cakes. 

Dex spent his years traveling from one place to the next taking on different jobs. He is now back home and found working as a smokejumper is his calling. 

Now that Cady and Dex are both in the same town again, will they finally get their happily ever after?

This book was very well detailed and you could tell the author did a lot of research to make the story believable.  I hate to see this series come to an end. 

Friday, July 8, 2016

The Lost Sheenan's Bride (Taming of the Sheenans Book 6) by Jane Porter - Review


Trying to get over a broken heart, twenty-four year old teacher Jet Diekerhof takes a gap year to travel and have an adventure. Her practical farming family is horrified until Jet's older sister Harley gets her a long term sub position at a one room school house in Montana’s Paradise Valley. Jet's grateful it’s 775 miles from her overly involved family—and the guy who broke her heart. She’s also sworn off men until meeting darkly handsome Shane Swan changes everything...

Thirty-four year old Shane Swan has been an outsider since birth. Raised by his maternal grandmother near Flathead Lake, Montana, until her death when he was four, meant he ended up in foster care. But ever smart, determined, and ambitious, Shane has become one of the most successful writers in America. Yet none of his success has answered the burning question: why was he the one given away, and his brothers kept? Now Shane has moved to Marietta to unravel the secrets and lies and what it means to be a Sheenan, and nobody is closer to the Sheenans than Brock’s young sister-in-law, Jet.

Normally Shane would never use a woman, but if Jet can connect him with the keys to his past, he doesn't seem to have choice. Until he begins to fall for her. Can two strangers, who were never meant to be, believe in love again?

Taming of the Sheenan Series
Book 1: Christmas at Copper Mountain (Brock Sheenan)
Book 2: The Tycoon's Kiss (Troy Sheenan)
Book 3: The Kidnapped Christmas Bride (Trey Sheenan)
Book 4: Taming of the Bachelor (Dillion Sheenan)
Book 5: A Christmas Miracle for Daisy (Cormac Sheenan)
Book 6: The Lost Sheenan's Bride (Shane Sheenan)

My Review: 

Disillusioned in love after a recent breakup, Jet Diekerhof moved to Marietta to start a teaching job in a nearby town and to be closer to her sister Harley.  She becomes intrigued by a man who stops in the coffee shop every day and they quickly become friends.  Jet is excited to learn he is her all-time favorite author, Sean S. Finley, and he is currently writing a book about the unsolved murder at the Douglas ranch.  Shane is disliked by the Sheenan brothers and Jet’s sister is married to one of them.  Harley forbids Jet to see Shane again. 

Shane Swan was born in Marietta but raised by his grandmother.  After his grandmother passed away, Shane lived in foster homes until he was old enough to take care of himself.  One thing he was always questioning was why his real family gave him up.  He wants answers and will do anything to find them.  Shane knows who is family is, but they don’t know who he is.  Writing his next novel brings him back home and closer to the answers he seeks for his book and his personal life.  

Originally, Shane’s plan was to use Jet to get information about the Sheenans, but that plan failed when they become attracted to each other.  Now they have a whole new problem.  Jet is caught in the middle of a feud between Shane and the Sheenan brothers.  Jet has a choice to make.  Should she listen to her family or her heart?

This beautifully written emotional romance was filled with lots of surprises.  The characters were believable and the story kept my attention all the way to the end.  It was a great way to wrap up The Taming of the Sheenans series.  I would have loved to have known what really happened on the Douglas Ranch the day of the murders, but maybe that is for a future book.