Friday, April 26, 2019

Review: They Call Me the Cat Lady Amy Miller

You’ve seen me on the street. You’ve walked past my house, and pointed, and wondered. The cat lady. All on my own, with only my five cats to keep me company. Did no-one ever tell you that you can’t judge a book by its cover?

Everyone in town knows Nancy Jones. She loves her cats. She loves her tumbledown house by the sea. She loves her job in the local school where she tries to help the children who need help the most. Nancy tries hard not to think about her past loves and where those led her…

Nancy never shares her secrets – because some doors are better kept locked. But one day she accepts a cat-sitting request from a local woman, and at the woman’s house, Nancy sees a photograph, in a bright-red frame. A photograph that opens the door to her painful past…

Soon Nancy doesn’t know what frightens her the most: letting her story out, or letting the rest of the world in. It’s impossible to find companionship without the risk of losing it. But can Nancy take that risk again?

My Review:

No matter how hard it is, sometimes facing the past is all you need to set a new path to the future. 

We all have something in our pasts that we would rather keep hidden.  In this book, we meet Nancy Jones, who is known as the cat lady by everyone in her town.  Nancy is a kind-hearted lady, who had a tragic past that she would rather forget.  These days, Nancy enjoys spending her time with cats, not humans.  Nancy works part time at a school and feeds people’s cats for extra money.  But, when Nancy goes to feed a client’s cat, she discovers something that brings the past back to life.  Everything changes after that.  Nancy’s life will never be the same. 

This is one of those books that once you get into it, you can’t put it down.  It’s a story about friendships, secrets, tragedies, and facing the past and learning to move forward.  And, of course there are lots of cats.  I could relate to Nancy’s love of her cats and how sometimes they are the only ones you can turn to when life gets tough.  I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good women’s fiction book and especially those who love cats. 

Thank you to Bookouture and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Review: The Lone Star Lawman (Texas Justice Book 1) by Justine Davis

He never lets anything get to him. Except her.

Police Chief Shane Highwater has the respect of the entire town of Last Stand, Texas, and they all believe he was blameless when an accident several months ago ended one life and tore apart another. All except reporter Liliana Jones, who blames him for her fiancĂ©’s death.

There's more to the story than she knows, secrets that might change her mind. Secrets Shane can't tell her. But oh, does he want to, because Lily Jones is the first woman he's been undeniably drawn to in a very long time.

When a tragedy in town throws them together, Lily is forced to admit Shane is everything everyone said he was and ignoring the growing attraction is near impossible, and she’s no longer sure she wants to. Has her change of heart come too late?

My Review:

The Lone Star Lawman is an incredible start of a new series.  In this book we meet Police Chief Shane Highwater, who is highly respected by everyone in Last Stand, Texas, and reporter Lily Jones, who lost her husband in an accident and blames Shane for it.   Lily still holds a grudge against Shane, but a turn of events soon has Lily seeing Shane is one of the good guys. 

This is an enemy to lovers romance with a lot of angst at first.  I liked the characters, plot and small town setting.  It was an easy book to follow along with.  Even though this book is part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.    

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Review: An Irresistible Temptation (The Cavallo Brothers Book 2) by Elsa Winckler

She has enough trouble in her life – she doesn’t need him to add more.

While school teacher Dana Roux is attracted to hotel tycoon David, she has no intention of ever acting on it. He’s way out of her league, and, as a former investigative journalist, David would soon discover the sordid scandal of her father’s incarceration and suicide.

David Cavallo quit his job as a reporter because he no longer had the stomach for it. Now he works with his brothers, enjoys life and especially enjoys flirting with women. Usually they reciprocate, but Dana steers clear even though he can tell she’s tempted. But at his brother’s wedding, they share a kiss that leaves him aching for more. Could Dana be the one? Before he can explore his feelings, he learns of his role in her father’s fall and suddenly his hoped for romance becomes complicated.

Will the past define their future?

My Review:

From the day hotel tycoon David Cavallo met Dana Roux, he knew there was something special about her.  It wasn’t until years later when he finally made his move during his brother’s wedding.  From that moment, David couldn’t get Dana out of his mind.  But, Dana didn’t want a relationship.  Her life was a mess as it was.  She was still struggling with her father’s incarceration and suicide.  When David offers to help Dana find out the truth about what really happened, their togetherness leads them both down a path neither expected.  They were meant to be a couple and nothing and no one was going to stop them.

When I first picked up this book, I didn’t realize there would be a suspense part in it as well as the romance.  It was a pleasant surprise and kept me on the edge of my chair to find out what would happen next.  Lots of family dynamics, romance and excitement filled the pages.  The author did a great job creating interesting characters and a fun and exciting plot.  This book is part of a series, but each can be read as a stand-alone.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Review: The Summer Cottage by Viola Shipman

From the bestselling author of The Charm Bracelet and The Recipe Box comes the perfect summer escape about the restorative power of family tradition, small-town community and the feel of sand between your toes

Adie Lou Kruger’s ex never understood her affection for what her parents called their Cozy Cottage, the charming, ramshackle summer home—complete with its own set of rules for relaxing—that she’s inherited on Lake Michigan. But despite the fact she’s facing a broken marriage and empty nest, and middle age is looming in the distance, memories of happy childhoods on the beach give her reason for hope. She’s determined not to let her husband’s affair with a grad student reduce her to a clichĂ©, or to waste one more minute in a career she doesn’t love, so it becomes clear what Adie Lou must do: rebuild her life and restore her cottage shingle by shingle, on her terms.

But converting the beloved, weather-beaten structure into a bed-and-breakfast isn’t quite the efficient home-reno experience she’s seen on TV. Pushback from Saugatuck’s contentious preservation society, costly surprises and demanding guests were not part of the plan. But as the cottage comes back to life, Adie Lou does, too, finding support in unexpected places and a new love story on the horizon. One cottage rule at a time, Adie Lou reclaims her own strength, history and joy by rediscovering the magic in every sunset and sandcastle.

My Review:

The Summer Cottage is a truly inspirational story about a woman who decides to turn her family summer cottage into a B&B when her marriage ends.  While renovating Creaky Cottage, Adie Lou discovers hidden historic gems along the way.  It was fun to learn the history of the cottage in each of the discoveries.  She rediscovers the town of Saugatuck, where she spent every summer while growing up.  She makes new friends; she even falls in love and even rescues a dog.  Set on a bluff overlooking Lake Michigan, the descriptions took me away.  The cottage, lake and town were so vividly written, they could have been their own characters in the book. 

The book is written in sections using Adie Lou’s grandfather’s rules that were to be obeyed while visiting the cottage,  “wake up smiling” and “nap often” are just a couple.  But, my favorite rule is “Everyone must be present for the sunset”.  My favorite quote from the book comes from this rule which we should all to try to remember at the end of each day:

“Sunsets are like snowflakes. No one is the same, my mom said. We miss too many of them rushing around. They are celebrations because every day is an accomplishment, a blessing of epic magnitude that we all take for granted. No matter how difficult a day has been, a sunset proves that there is still hope and good things can happen tomorrow. See how slowly they seem to take, and then how quickly they fade?”

This book left a lasting impression on me.  I highly recommend it. 

I would like to thank Graydon House Books and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.