Kiss in the Wind by Rachel Goldsworthy

The Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop series continues with a second installment, where lives are once again changed because the wishes of one cunning woman requests it. Livy Tarbert has a good career as an employee at a food company in Chicago, but she has dreams of being able to create her own concoctions one day and not always following the directions of someone else. When she comes to Corsair’s Cove to work with her cousin, she is eager to try out a variety of recipes that have been in her mind. But Livy quickly discovers the new position still makes her answerable to others. Rachel Goldsworthy takes this independent woman on a journey of self-discovery, where emotions are often conflicted. KISS IN THE WIND is delightfully enjoyable, and I want to believe these characters and the old-fashioned town actually exist.

When Livy Tarbert found out part ownership of Red Gem’s Chocolates and Confections was her inheritance from a great-aunt, she is excited about the prospect of living in Corsair’s Cove and working in the family business. With a degree in chemistry, she hopes to come up with some original ideas which will make the chocolate sold at the shop even more tasty. Since Livy’s social life has been pretty much nonexistent for years, she will not have any difficulty in putting much time into making her aspirations a reality.

There are many good memories for Livy when she thinks about Corsair’s Cover and her childhood visits, and right after arriving in town, she meets some citizens whom she does not know. One man in particular stands out, and the owner of Zephyr’s Rest Tavern seems determined to have her join in various community activates. But what Mack Johanssen secretly wants is for Livy to become involved with him personally.

In KISS IN THE WIND, there are emotional moments, humorous incidents, and lots of engaging townsfolk. Rachel Goldsworthy had me wanting to visit the businesses that are depicted in the story, as the proprietors sound charming. What happens to the town is important to those who live in this small community, and I had a good time watching them discuss business and partake in fun events. Mack is charismatic, and his sunny disposition had me smiling. The scientific mind of Livy has kept her rather isolated from other people, and I waited to see if the local residents could get her to be more outgoing. With her being intent on developing her own creations, there are plenty of especially yummy mixtures being experimented on all through the story, making me very hungry for something sweet. Also, once again there is as indication that something paranormal might perhaps be occurring, and I am eager to find out what is really going on.

I voluntarily reviewed the book and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop – Book 2

Publisher:  Amazon Digital Services LLC

Releases:  August 31, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/ybgeh5ks

Genre:  Contemporary

Author Website:   https://rachelgoldsworthy.com/ 

Rating:  4 Stars

Kiss at the Cove by Lee McKenzie

In the first book of the Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop series, much information is given that sets the foundation for all four stories. Significant characters are introduced, while important details that impact the future are also conveyed. The picturesque town of Corsair’s Cove is depicted with very colorful visuals, and these striking images let me fully experience the region as though I was actually there. Lee McKenzie is definitely skilled at drawing the reader into her stories, and I constantly felt like the residents were people whom I wanted to know. KISS AT THE COVE is an entrancing start to an original series, sprinkled with compelling emotions and featuring fascinating characters.

Although Prudence Parker could have moved away from Corsair’s Cove, Washington just like her three cousins, she decided to live in the coastal community and be a wedding planner. She also watches over an elderly great-aunt who runs Red Gem’s, a local shop that makes chocolate treats and is allegedly haunted. Some days are rather hectic, but Prudence gets much satisfaction when her hard work results in a successful wedding.

Sadly, the romance in her life has not gone well, as two upcoming marriages were called off by her. When Prudence meets a biologist who is now living in the area to work on a research project, she sees him as very appealing. But Spencer MacKewan has his own romantic problems, as his fiancée decided they should not wed at the last minute, so neither is interested in starting a new relationship. However, fate sometimes has other ideas.

There are several serious emotional issues in the story, ones which really touched me on a deep level. The reactions of the characters are very convincing, and this added to the believability in KISS AT THE COVE. While certain moments are moving, others contain humorous situations or comments. Prudence and Spencer are a delight from the beginning, as they had such likable dispositions. Whether they were interacting with each other or someone else, I was always involved in how they would behave. As they face what life throws at them, I came to like each of them even more.

Since the chocolate shop might be haunted, I am looking forward to seeing how this fact is carried out in upcoming releases, especially since I enjoy the paranormal so much. KISS AT THE COVE is a captivating contemporary romance, where a hint of the supernatural could lead to surprising possibilities.

I voluntarily reviewed the book and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop – Book 1

Publisher:  Self

Releases:  August 12, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/y7sxhsq5

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://www.leemckenzie.com/

Rating:  4.5 Stars

De-Witched by Linda Thomas-Sundstrom

A story set in Salem is the perfect way to get in the mood for Halloween. It has good witches who try to keep innocents safe, while another group only wants to carry out evil deeds. When a werewolf comes to town, both he and one particular female witch know very little about each other’s abilities. But it does not take long for these two to become well acquainted, plus discover that there might be something special brewing between them. Linda Thomas-Sundstrom has created a delightfully entertaining story in her Dark vs. Light series, where futures and hearts are on the line in DE-WITCHED. I was totally charmed by this enchanting book.

When werewolf Kade Willis travels to Salem, Massachusetts to preside over a meeting for his Los Angeles law firm, there is trouble with his hotel room reservation. Forced to stay at a local bed and breakfast, all he thinks about is completing his upcoming discussion with clients and returning home. But with his trip taking place right before Samhain, Kade is in for several unexpected developments.

Upon coming in contact with Loren Beck Broom, his innkeeper, Kade feels entranced by the mysterious woman whose nearness puts his werewolf senses on high alert. She also feels her new guest is not quite normal, and it seems a large number of witches with bad intentions are very interested in him. It is a good thing Loren is a formidable witch, as Kade needs plenty of protection.

Paranormal books by Linda Thomas-Sundstrom always keep me enthralled during the countless imaginative scenes. In DE-WITCHED, two beings get to showcase their supernatural capabilities when they must face enemies. Characters conceived by this author are repeatedly unique, as their skills are not the norm, and I enjoyed seeing what Loren and Kade could do when the need arose. I also like a story where surprising incidents occur, and the couple has to experience one unanticipated escapade after another. The longing in their relationship builds quickly, yet doubts have them questioning what their next course of action should be. Kade is a very lovable man, and his charming personality shines through often. I thought Loren was spirited, and her behavior had me liking her all the more. Another captivating story from the talented Linda Thomas-Sundstrom.

I voluntarily reviewed the book, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Dark vs. Light

Publisher:  GothicScapes

Releases:  September 29, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/y9whmxjc

Genre:  Paranormal

Author website:  http://www.lindathomas-sundstrom.com/

Rating:  4.5 Stars

Save a Truck, Ride a Redneck by Molly Harper

Lots of smiles are guaranteed when reading a book by Molly Harper, and this fact is repeatedly proven in the first book of the Southern Eclectic series. With its unique individuals and comical situations, I quickly became caught up in the lives of these exceptional characters. The appeal of living in a small town is shown in a number of positive ways, yet there is a downside because residents are often privy to specific information which is best left unknown. In this story, a woman thought she knew what was best for her and acted accordingly. But all it takes is one visit back home, and her life choices suddenly become questionable. I laughed so many times yet also felt very emotional during certain scenes, as Molly Harper ingeniously makes SAVE A TRUCK, RIDE A REDNECK entertainingly realistic.

When Marianne McCready graduated from high school four years ago, she believed getting away from the coastal town of Lake Sackett, Georgia would ensure her life turned out well. Breaking up with her boyfriend, Carl Dawson, right before leaving was exceedingly difficult, yet she also thought it was for the best. Marianne has not been back home very much, mostly because she wanted to avoid Carl, but she has decided to stay with her family for several months until law school starts in the fall.

Unfortunately for Marianne, the first person that she encounters is Carl, and there is little warmth in his greeting. But as the two keep running into each other from time to time, feelings they once shared start resurfacing. Now Marianne has to decide if her future is in another city, or if staying in her hometown can actually bring contentment.

Though the story is a novella, it is certainly not short on enjoyment. There are many distinctive characters whose personalities brought me joy every time they commented, and the behavior of some people was laughable but sadly true-to-life. Molly Harper always manages to create original individuals for her stories, and many of those in SAVE A TRUCK, RIDE A REDNECK are people whom I would really like to know. The quaint hometown feel in the story had me thinking about where I live, and then grinning as I pictured some of the same occurrences taking place in my area.

Marianne and Carl are a delightful couple. Watching them rehash old hurts was rather painful at times, but just like real life, there are often challenges to overcome. Whenever they talked, I anxiously waited to see what would happen next. Their interaction with other town citizens is sometimes hilarious, while other moments were more poignant, making a perfect blend of emotional conflict with witty humor. Marianne’s dealings with her family were also insightful, as it let me get to know all her wonderful relatives. I am glad this is a series, because I want to revisit with these fascinating characters many times.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the publisher via NetGalley, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Southern Eclectic

Publisher:  Pocket Star

Releases:  October 16, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/y9aadkhx

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://mollyharper.com/

Rating:  4 Stars

The Look of Love by Julia Kelly

In the first book of the Matchmaker of Edinburgh series, emotional issues become very complicated when turmoil enters the lives of two individuals. A man from England and a Scottish woman have a friendship in 1875, and while not everything in their lives is rosy, the many companionable moments they spend together bring much enjoyment. But it only takes one wrong decision to change both their lives forever. I eagerly kept reading to discover what would ultimately happen to them. Julia Kelly takes the couple down a path where choices are not always easy, and much soul-searching must be done when entanglements arise. THE LOOK OF LOVE has unpredicted developments, sincere feelings, and engaging characters.

Though most women Ina Duncan’s age would be looking for a husband, she plans to stay single since most men would not give their approval of her working on sculptures. While attending a gathering at the home of Moira Sullivan, she ends up in a situation where her reputation could be destroyed. With the host being a renowned matchmaker, she concocts a solution which will have Ina marrying her best friend, Gavin Barrett.

The writer has known Ina for several years, and although he has adored her since their first meeting, he has never revealed his feelings and just let her think of him as a close acquaintance. So when it is strongly suggested that he marry her so she will not be banished from society, Gavin readily agrees. When the couple wed, Ina has some rules for them to follow, yet like much in life, things do not always go as wished.

Julia Kelly begins her new series with a compelling theme about matchmaking, and THE LOOK OF LOVE is a historical romance filled with realistic challenges and heartfelt emotions. Although Gavin and Ina were very familiar with the other, neither thought a wedding would ever bind them together. I never knew what was going to happen to them, as one unpredictable incident after another keeps occurring. Both have aspirations that they want to achieve, but some type of obstacle often kept them from reaching a certain goal. During this time period, women were definitely hindered by how society dictated their behavior, while birth order frequently had a man seen as the less important son. Gavin and Ina may be good friends and share much of their life experiences with each other, but she is clueless as to how he really thinks about her. This secret plays a big part in the story, and what they come to realize as they explore the depths of their inner feelings could greatly affect their futures. Their relationship is believable, as reactions are candidly forthright, and some of their comments contain delightful humor. I enjoyed watching the couple go through the many ups and downs of being married. Julia Kelly has brought an entertaining romance to life with compelling details.

I voluntarily reviewed the book from the publisher via NetGalley, and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Matchmaker of Edinburgh – Book 1

Publisher:  Pocket Star

Releases:  October 9, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/y8mv6u77

Genre:  Historical

Author website:  http://www.juliakellywrites.com/

Rating:  4 Stars

The Witch’s Quest by Michele Hauf

The Decadent Dames miniseries is about three witches who run a brewery in Minnesota, and one of them really wants to find a man who will feel affection for her regardless of how she looks or her personality. Using a particular spell seems harmless, but the life of Valor Hearst dramatically changes when she attempts to find love. Since Michele Hauf wrote the story, it is filled with unique details plus very lively characters, and numerous scenes kept me captivated. The Beautiful Creatures world created by this author is always a treat to visit, and I found the developments in THE WITCH’S QUEST to be notable and constantly adventurous.

To appear more appealing to men, witch Valor Hearst entered a forest said to be enchanted so something specific could be located in order to cast a love spell. There is a warning about the area related to witches, and her situation quickly turns grim when the threat becomes a reality. But before her life is ended, a faery named Kelyn Saint-Pierre comes to her aid by giving up something very important to him so Valor can be saved.

Although prior to the incident in the forest, Kelyn would have liked for Valor to be in his life as more than just a possible friend. Now he only wants to avoid her and forget what happened. Yet she is not going to give up on paying him back, whether he wants her to or not. Kelyn finally agrees to a plan which Valor devises, one that will hopefully help him regain what was lost. As the couple travel about in search of certain supernatural items, they discover many truths.

THE WITCH’S QUEST is magically believable. It is always easy to visualize the scenes constructed by Michele Hauf, as her wording so clearly expresses how every aspect looks and is being carried out. What I repeatedly enjoy about Ms. Hauf’s work is the originality found all throughout the book, and her talent once again shines in this fun story. From travels to various parts of the world to scenes taking place back home in Minnesota, I felt like I was seeing the areas through the eyes of the characters. The many escapades that Valor and Kelyn experience are inventive and sometimes dangerous, yet some humorous moments can also be found from time to time. Many past characters from previous books make appearances, and it was great seeing what they were currently doing. But if the books have not been read, enough information is told so a reader is not lost. There are a wide variety of paranormal beings in the story, and each one has its own personal traits and nature as only Michele Hauf can portray.

Valor may seem to be a witch who is always in control yet she is actually vulnerable when it comes to men, but being around Kelyn gives her a big boost as his considerate nature makes her feel more confident. He is such a wonderful hero, giving of himself even when he does not benefit. A witch and faery may not seem like they could ever be in a lasting relationship, and there are several incidents where issues could either draw them together or tear them apart.

I voluntarily reviewed the book and all comments are my honest opinion

Series:  Decadent Dames

Publisher:  Harlequin Nocturne

Releases:  October 1, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/yagfqudy

Genre:  Paranormal

Author website:  http://www.michelehauf.com/

Rating:  4.5 Stars