Their Christmas Miracle by Lynne Marshall

Unexpected feelings plus shocking circumstances make the second book in the Charity, Montana series very compelling and often moving. The small-town setting is perfectly delightful, where residents are charming and know one another. With the story taking place at Christmas time, plenty of celebrations are occurring and folks are in a festive mood. I enjoyed all the fun seasonal experiences, especially since I remember doing some of the very same things in years past. Characters are engagingly believable, and their everyday lives are depicted with realism. Lynne Marshall always writes truly convincing stores, and THEIR CHRISTMAS MIRACLE is affectingly emotional.

Since Tracy Blevin needs a little extra cash to help with her house payments, she occasionally works another job after her shift ends at the urgent care in Charity, Montana where she is a nurse. She enjoys baking, and making pies for Wood’s Café brings her much pleasure along with some money. Getting to interact with the diner’s owner is a bonus, but Hunter Wood seems content to keep things professional, so Tracy thinks friendship is all they will ever share.

After serving his sentence, Hunter wants to put the past behind him and have a brighter future. As he and Tracy become better acquainted when their work schedule overlaps, both begin to dream of possibilities that each feels will never become a reality. When an unanticipated event drastically alters Hunter’s life, his relationship with Tracy could also go in a new direction.

A standalone story, THEIR CHRISTMAS MIRACLE is about taking a risk and hoping the outcome will bring happiness. Hunter paid the price for a tragic mistake, and now he just wants to be respected and move forward. Working hard at his café takes up much of his time, but he has definitely noticed the intriguing Tracy who bakes some really delicious pies and also appeals to him. When he ends up the guardian of a young infant, he makes sure the boy is a priority in his life. I liked seeing how this man faced the obstacles of raising a child, and some were amusing while other instances were touching. Lynne Marshall had me smiling often during the scenes where little Adam was featured as those moments were certainly accurate.

Tracy has fears about giving love another chance, but being around Hunter as first a business partner and then his friend has her secretly wanting more. I never knew if this couple would let their feelings dictate their actions or if their mind would be in control. The author has her characters behave with genuine reactions, and just like real life, responses are not always in a person’s best interest. Honest emotions are why I always like reading a story written by Lynne Marshall.

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

Series:  Charity, Montana – Book 2

Publisher:  Tule Publishing

Releases:  November 7, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/yac4mxsr

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://lynnemarshall.com/

Rating:   4 Stars

Kiss at the Altar by Rachel Goldsworthy, Shelley Adina, Sharon Ashwood, Lee McKenzie

All the delightfully appealing couples from the prior books in the Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop series make an appearance in the concluding story, and one of them is about to wed. This particular bride has previously shown doubts when it comes to getting married, but surely all will happen as planned this time. But just like real life, nothing is guaranteed until the event has actually occurred. Rachel Goldsworthy, Shelley Adina, Sharon Ashwood, and Lee McKenzie have created a wonderful place for their series to be set, and the many characters whom they have brought to life are always interesting. KISS AT THE ALTAR has fascinating circumstances that make me want to believe.

After four cousins inherit Red Gem’s chocolate shop located in the coastal town of Corsair’s Cove, they all discover much about themselves and even find a special man to love. One of them, Prudence Parker, is going to wed Spencer MacKewan on Christmas Eve, and the holiday season will make the celebration more festive. The bride’s ring once belonged to her great-grandmother, and everything looks like it will be a perfect day, especially since Prudence is a wedding planner. Yet not all goes smoothly, because neither the ring or the bride can be found when it is almost time for their vows to be said.

Corsair’s Cove has legends about certain places being haunted, and while some residents laugh at the concept, others know for a fact that it is true. So when several unanticipated incidents crop up, I had to wonder if one of those devious spirits was responsible. The authors make the notion of supernatural occurrences in the town seem very probable, and I really enjoyed their latest cleverly imagined idea.

It was great getting to see all the romantic couples from the earlier stories come together for Prudence and Spencer’s big day, and when things become hectic, their reactions proved how much they cared. While the cousins may not have been close in a long time, being brought together by their great-aunt’s decision not only changed all their lives but brought unexpected happiness in so many ways. My visit to Corsair’s Cove has been enchanting.

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

Series:  Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop – Book 5

Publisher:  Amazon Digital Services LLC

Releases:  November 3, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/yckeycnl

Genre:  Contemporary

Rating:  4 Stars

Slow Burn by J.H. Croix

When Beck Steele was met in the first book of the Into the Fire series, I saw him as an irresistible flirt. In his own story, I also discovered that he is very capable when it comes to firefighting, and he takes his responsibilities seriously. Yet when it comes to women and dating, his main thoughts are having a good time and making certain his lover is satisfied when they part. But when the sometimes rather disagreeable new dispatcher came to work at the station, the life of this carefree man begins to gradually change without him even noticing. J.H. Croix makes the emotional moments in SLOW BURN believable, while any sexual escapades are off-the-charts steamy.

Since Maisie Rogers is the dispatcher for Willow Brook Fire and Rescue, she talks with a variety of locals in the quaint Alaskan town. While she enjoys her career choice, there is one person in the area who can annoy her just by speaking, and he unluckily works with her. Though Beck Steele may be temptingly hot, he has a reputation for dating lots of women, and Maisie does not plan on being one of them. But for some reason, the woman who answers the emergency calls has Beck feeling different about her than the other females whom he encounters, and her refusal to do more than kiss him only makes his determination to win her over even greater.

J.H. Croix knows how to make her romances engaging from the start, where emotions are constantly sincere and the characters have honest reactions. I am always deeply affected when I read a book by this author, as her characters are so true-to-life and make me care about their welfare. Beck does all he can to keep others safe when it pertains to his work, and I admired his professionalism. In his personal life, he is always upfront when with a woman. But being around Maisie leaves him confused and not in control of his responses. She is also conflicted about her feelings for him, and I enjoyed watching these two come to terms with how they really felt for one another. Often when they are together, the couple experience passionate sex that is better than any fantasy either could imagine. SLOW BURN takes Beck and Maisie through a series of highs and lows, where candid feelings are expressed and hopes just might come true.

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

Series:  Into the Fire – Book 2

Publisher:  Amazon Digital Services LLC

Releases:  October 29, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/ycd8am3b

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://jhcroixauthor.com/

Rating:  5 Stars

Ready for Wild by Liora Blake

In the concluding story of the Grand Valley series, a man and woman enjoy being outdoors and both even like to hunt. While he is a game warden, she has her own TV show where hunting is the main topic. When they have to work together on a project, sparks fly when one issue after another is met with conflicting opinions. Yet even when his respect for nature battles with her flashy show ideas, there is still a simmering attraction between them that will not be denied. I laughed when a moment turned comical and repeatedly felt the heat of their passion. I was also deeply touched when this couple laid their hearts on the line. READY FOR WILD has very appealing characters plus an adventurous premise, and Liora Blake cleverly entwines delightful humor with heartfelt emotions to create a compelling story of unexpected romance.

Since Braden Montgomery likes the outdoors, he became a game warden in Colorado. At the present, he has no interest in having a relationship because of a past incident, so his time is devoted to his career and helping the community. When he gets word that a TV show about hunting might want to shoot some episodes around Grand Valley, he is not happy, even though the host of the program is female and temptingly hot.

After the area that he watches over is chosen to be the site of a televised elk hunt, Braden ends up spending much time with Amber Regan. While the couple often do not agree on a subject at first, he comes to realize there is much more to her than stunning looks and attention-grabbing clothes. Amber is trying her best to make this new series something hunters will enjoy watching, or there is a good possibility her show will not be renewed. Although Braden also entices her, she is not going to let him make decisions which could lead to her failing.

Though I live in the country and have always been around hunters, I have never been the one holding the gun. So it was interesting to read about a woman who can hold her own when it comes to knowing how to correctly track down her own dinner. Amber is very lively, says what she thinks, and is always ready for a good time. But there is also a side to her that wants something more in life, even if she is not completely aware of this fact. Braden has been burned by an ex-girlfriend, so he is cautious when it comes to women. But Amber is not like anyone whom he has encountered before, and their relationship is fiery from the start. At first it was different views which had them disagreeing and heated, but their arguments gradually turn to lust-filled fantasies coming true. These two are definitely enthusiastic when it comes to sex. Much soul-searching is also done by Amber and Braden, as Liora Blake gives them some difficult life choices.

Amusement is scattered all throughout the story, from witty comments to intelligent banter, and I always looked forward to Braden and Garrett conversing because their remarks where especially chuckle inducing. The scenes outdoors were vividly detailed and let me experience the moment to the fullest. READY FOR WILD has passionate romance, hilarity, and intense emotional circumstances.

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

Series:  Grand Valley – Book 3

Publisher:  Gallery

Releases:  October 31, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/y76md6pw

Genre:  Contemporary

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

Rating:  4 Stars

Kiss in the Dark by Sharon Ashwood

Since a ghost has always been a favorite paranormal being, I was very excited about the premise of the Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop series. Though most situations in the previous three books have been about normal contemporary events, many of the incidents in the fourth story have a supernatural aspect to them. Sharon Ashwood has conceived numerous innovative ideas for her contribution to the series, and each one made me want to consider the possibility of the circumstances being true. KISS IN THE DARK is imaginatively original all the way through. Some of the current happenings in Corsair’s Cove just might be caused by a curse, and though no one is ready to admit that the legendary hauntings are real, some rather strange occurrences do take place at times. Every fact seems very genuine, and if a place actually had such an unusual past, I would definitely like to visit the area for a chance to interact with all the current residents and perhaps encounter something paranormal.

When Eloise Wilson came to Corsair’s Cove, Washington, she was thankful for the opportunity to have a place to live, because she has yet to find work after graduating from college. The rent-free room is located above the Red Gem’s Chocolates and Confections, the business a great-aunt willed to her and three other cousins. What Eloise did not expect was to find Captain Daniel Blackthorne, the town’s most famous ghost, was also living in the building. While she knows all too well that spirits live amongst us, since they became visible to her when younger, she wants the long-ago pirate gone and just hopes her protections can keep him away from her.

An upcoming Hallowe’en charity event sponsored by the chocolate shop will let Eloise use her marketing skills to aid in making a big profit, and she needs to concentrate on the event, not the persistent ghost in her apartment. But Daniel has to break the curse put upon him by midnight on the 31st, or he will lose everything. If he can help Eloise to fall in love, then he can save himself. Yet getting close enough to assist her is not easy when she makes him keep his distance.

The town of Corsair’s Cove is filled with a vast assortment of residents, and these individuals have their own personalities and behavior. None are more unique than Eloise, but she is hiding a painful past that she feels nobody would understand. I really felt for her, and was so hopeful that perhaps this move would be the one where she is finally accepted. With every interaction with Daniel, I could sense a change in them both. But with such huge challenges for them to face, I could not see a positive outcome for either of them. I simply adored Daniel from the moment he is met, and some of his responses are rather hilarious while others are dramatically serious. Eloise is someone who only wants to be loved for herself, and her fears and anguish came across as so realistic. I am so glad to have met the many appealing residents in the series, and am looking forward to my next visit. KISS IN THE DARK is intriguingly fascinating and very believable.

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

Series:  Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop – Book 4

Publisher:  Rowan & Ash Artistry

Releases:  September 30, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/yb3u5cc6

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://www.rowanartistry.com/authors/sharon-ashwood/

Rating:  4.5 Stars

Kiss on the Beach by Shelley Adina

With each new story in the Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop series, additional facts are learned about a town with a very colorful history. Since Corsair’s Cove is along the coast, it once had its share of pirates and questionable residents. Curses and supposedly haunted places are part of the charm, and the town even celebrates with a Pirate Fest. But when a man and woman with very little in common meet up again after years apart, they discover the town that she once called home is a place where dreams might possibly come true, if risks are willing to be taken. Shelley Adina makes KISS ON THE BEACH entertaining with an engaging couple and compelling circumstances. The story certainly kept my attention during every riveting scene.

After receiving word that she was now part owner of a shop in Corsair’s Cove which offers chocolate items for sale, the only thought Brynn Kato has is to sell the unwanted inheritance to her three cousins. When she arrives in the town located along the Washington coast, she wants to quickly sign the necessary papers and return to her job working at Ocean Technology because several critical matters require her attention. But her carefully thought out plan falls apart when nothing goes as anticipated, and Brynn is forced to stay longer than expected.

Being back in Corsair’s Cove puts Jamie Finlayson in her life once more. He is the man with whom she shares fond childhood memories, yet there can never be anything between them now as their lives are way too different. Since Jamie has not completely gotten over what he felt for Brynn since they were younger, he hopes her short time in their hometown will let her realize what they could have together.

There are at times an enchanted feel to Corsair’s Cove, and each interesting detail that is revealed about the town always captured my thoughts. Wanting to know about anything supernatural kept me eagerly reading to uncover the truth. Regardless of what is going on, every incident is realistically depicted and made me want to believe. One aspect of the story which is very enjoyable is whenever Bonney the parrot is featured. This talkative bird had me smiling and wanting to see what witty comment she would say next.

KISS ON THE BEACH has spirited characters and heartfelt feelings being expressed. The romantic path created for Brynn and Jamie is sometimes emotional, while other instances are more carefree. Shelley Adina has created a couple who must consider how they want their futures to turn out. She has achieved her life’s goals, or so she thinks, but being back where she grew up gives her lots to ponder. Jamie is a wonderful man, so friendly and kind, yet thinks marriage may pass him by. I never knew how these two would interact with one another, but I was sure it would be with true-to-life responses. This series becomes more fascinating with each new release, and I am highly eager to find out more secrets in the fourth story.

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

Series:  Corsair’s Cove Chocolate Shop – Book 3

Publisher: Moonshell Books, Inc.

Releases:  September 15, 2017.

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/ycqxg9gx

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://shelleyadina.com/

Rating:  4 Stars

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

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

Burn For Me by J.H. Croix

To say that I have been highly anticipating BURN FOR ME is an accurate statement. First, I truly love stories with firefighters, those brave individuals who repeatedly put their lives on the line. Then there is the added bonus of having a heroine with my own first name, thus making it even easier for me to picture myself in her place! And since the hero is definitely very tempting, I just knew there would be lots of moments making fantasies come true, and I was absolutely right. J.H. Croix excels in creating emotionally realistic stories, and BURN FOR ME kept me enthralled during every engaging scene.

Although it should have been a joyous day for Amelia Haynes, she is all alone in a bar wearing a muddy wedding dress. While perhaps she should be sorry for not marrying her intended groom, she only feels happy knowing a huge mistake was not made. When an incident with a man at the bar turns unpleasant and the situation looks bleak, Amelia suddenly hears the voice of someone from her past.

It may have been seven years since Amelia has seen Cade Masters, but she has certainly not forgotten a single thing about the man whom she once loved. His disloyalty still haunts her, but there are facts that she does not know. Because Cade will now be living in Willow Brook, Alaska where she presently resides, he plans to make sure Amelia realizes the truth and that they will be together once again.

The Into the Fire series takes place in Alaska, and the picturesque setting comes alive from all the colorful descriptions of the locale, animals, and residents. The career of Cade is depicted with in-depth details which let me get a feel for what he had to endure when a fire broke out. It was also fun to see what Amelia’s career in construction was like when she took on a project. Several citizens in Willow Brook are featured from time to time, and I enjoyed getting to know these individuals and hope to meet them again.

When I met Amelia, the circumstances were not the best, and her honest responses to what happens afterward let me know she was stubborn yet vulnerable. While Cade was also not willing to bend at first when it pertained to their past, his desire for her has him thinking there might be an opportunity for them to get back together. As this couple works through one emotional issue after another, I kept wondering if their love was strong enough to overcome the challenges that came their way. Even when doubts surface, the potent sexual pull Cade and Amelia constantly feel cannot be ignored, resulting in countless fiery encounters. The author had me experiencing these episodes right along with them because of the expertly written scenes. BURN FOR ME is a rewarding read, and I am looking forward to the next release in the Into the Fire series.

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

Series:  Into the Fire – Book 1

Publisher:  Amazon Digital Services LLC

Releases:  September 28, 2017

Purchase:  http://tinyurl.com/y8q8twtb

Genre:  Contemporary

Author website:  http://jhcroixauthor.com/

Rating:  5 Stars