Monday, June 27, 2011

ANNA FINCH and the HIRED GUN by Kathleen Y'Barbo

This is book two in Kathleen Y'Barbo's series of women of the west. I enjoyed all three in the series. They were all filled with fun, romance and delight. I read them out of order, and it was fine, but I encourage you to read them in order. I met the main charcter of this story in book one, Anna Finch. I must say I was totally surprised by who this lady really was, after reading book 2. She was not the lady she appeared to be in book one; and I loved her for it.

Anna Finch's father is tired of seeing his daughter get into "mischief"; so he hires a Pinkerton man, Jeb Sanders to stick with her and keep her out of trouble. There first meeting was quite unexpected and got the story off to a good start. Keeping an eye on Anna proves to be quite a full time and demanding job for Jeb. Anna has a chance to write a story about the legendary Doc Holliday, the only problem is Jeb wants a chance to kill him. It makes for some very interesting excursions as Anna tries, but fails, to sneek away without Jeb along. You know Jeb and Anna are going to end up together, but it is sure fun watching the whole process take place.

I had a hard time putting the book down until I was finished reading. This whole series has just been fun to read from beginning to end. I also got to know a little bit more about Doc Holliday and appreciated the author sticking close to the historical facts about him in this story. I highly recommend this lighthearted and romantic series of books.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

THE TOUCH OF SAGE by Marcia Lynn McClure

This was a delightful read. I loved the ending of the book and part of the ending was such a heartwarming surprise. I found myself laughing and crying and fell in love with the ladies at Sage Willow's boarding house.

Sage has finally raised and seen her siblings married and she now finds herself running a boarding house with 4 widows living there. They are such characters you will learn to love them all for very different reasons. Sage has resigned herself that she will never marry (partly because there are no available prospects in their town), but one of the widow ladies has an idea. Her nephew, Reb Mitchell shows up on the scene to bring cattle onto Aunt Eugenia's ranch and run the place for her. Reb is a little leary of giving his heart to another woman, since he had a relationship go bad on him. But he doesn't mind having fun and flirtin' with the ladies. He has a way with the 4 widows that is downright endearing and Sage finds herself falling for him, even though she knows he isn't really interested in her, just having some fun. But Reb can't seem to get her off of his mind; and the "touch of Sage" just does something to him. This was a fun, very romantic story. What these ladies do to finally get Sage and Reb together is so funny and what Reb does for Sage at the end will convince you of his love for her. This was just an all around feel good story.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


This is book 3 in the Women of the West series and was almost as good as book one (I haven't had the pleasure of reading book 2 yet). Once again I found myself laughing and smiling, especially through the first half of this story. The second half was good, just not as humorous.

Charlotte Beck is a determined young woman who knows what she wants and doesn't want anyone to tell her what she can or cannot do. Charlotte's Dad, Daniel Beck (who I learned to admire in book one), is determined to see her settle down into a nice marriage, but that isn't how Charlotte sees her life playing out. Alex Hambly is an English gentleman who only wants to pursue his interest in astronomy, but finds it hard to do that while taking care of the family's near financial ruin. He crosses paths with Charlotte and her family and needless to say he and Charlotte don't exactly hit it off. But Danial Beck has a plan to help Alex out and hopefully help his daughter Charlotte out too. A marriage will provide Alex the funds he needs for his family and will provide Charlotte the independence from her father's authority. Though they agree to the marriage, neither one could anticipate the outcome of their decision.

The interaction between Charlotte and Alex was at first very amusing. Charlotte's Dad, Daniel was also a wise and all knowing Dad who understood these two people very well. The second half of the story was not as funny, yet it showed that no matter how Charlotte tried to outsmart her Dad and her husband, she had to come to terms with her heart and letting it love completely. I would like to thank Library Thing Early Reviewers for sending me this book to review. It was a pleasure to read.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


This was a fun story to read. You have Eugenia "Gennie" Cooper, a New York socialite in the 1880's who reads one to many dime store novels about the Wild West and feels she must experience it before she "settles down". She has a chance to go West and take someone's place as a governess for a wealthy gentleman, Daniel Beck, in Denver, Colorado for a month so she goes for it. When Daniel and Gennie first meet they don't realize they are employee and employer. It was instant attraction for both of them, but when the truth of who they are comes out things get a little topsy turvy. There is alot of laughable moments between these two characters and with Daniel's daughter, Charlotte. I had a hard time putting it down, but did feel the author ended the story rather quickly with alot happening at the end and not many details of how it all came about. And although I know why she started each chapter with a "dime store novel" insert, by the end of the book, I wasn't interested in that, just wanted to keep reading the actual story. I look forward to reading the other two books in this series. A lighthearted, quick read.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

A LADY LIKE SARAH by Margaret Brownley

This is the second book I have read by Margaret Brownley and she writes a story I really enjoy reading. Her writing style reminds me somewhat of Mary Connealy's style of writing. This story is filled with "laughter, mishaps and adventures" as the back of the book cover states. This was the first story in the Rocky Creek Romance series. I had already read book #3 in this series and not having read them in order was not a big deal.

The author has a way of catching your interest quickly, within the first few pages. In this story you find Justin Wells, a preacher who has left Boston for the tough country in Texas. He meets up with two people near death, a U.S. Marshal who is handcuffed to a redheaded outlaw being taken to Texas to hang. As Justin works to get this "lady" to Texas you find yourself falling in love with both of them. Sarah is such an open, outspoken "outlaw" who finds herself caring for someone for the first time in her life. And Justin is trying so hard to not care too deeply for Sarah. The interaction throughout this story kept me smiling for most of my way through this story. What can I say other than this is a very enjoyable read. Can't wait to read book #2 in this series soon!

Friday, June 17, 2011


This was a good historical story around the hills of Kentucke around 1777. It showed the harsh realities of living at a time when you never knew if and when the Shawnee would attack and kill. Lael Click's family was one of the first to settle in this part of the country and the more you read, the more you will learn about the history and heartache of their family. Lael finds herself in love with three VERY different men throughout this story and she must come to terms as to which man is the one she will give her heart to.

The story will span several years, and Lael will be taken from her home in Kentucke, but she will find her way back to the wild beauty of frontier life, with its dangers, hardships and courageous folks who struggled to survive. You will grow to love and understand Lael and at times really wonder which man she will give herself to. If you want a look back in history and enjoy a little romance along the way, then you will thoroughly enjoy this novel. This is not a fast-paced quick read, but well worth the time you put into it.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

THIS ISN'T THE LIFE I SIGNED UP FOR . . but I'm Finding Hope and Healing by Donna Partow

I appreciated the authors humour and honesty as she wrote this book. At times we all face things in life we "didn't sign up for" in life and Donna Partow looks at many challenges of life and how we can approach them with hope and not despair. She is funny, yet deals with some harsh realities of life and how to overcome them with healing and hope. I liked the way she finished up her book in the final chapter the best where she hit the nail on the head, God just wants us to be faithful to Him through all situations we encounter. I will close my review with one of her many quotes she highlights throughout her book, "Our most powerful opportunities for ministry are often borne out of our mistakes, out of our brokenness, out of those things in our lives that we didn't sign up for." Donna Partow is an author I enjoy reading and she helps me think through situations in a very practical yet biblical way.

A VISION OF LUCY by Margaret Brownley

A rollicking, delightful adventure, but also a look at the cruelties in life and how it can have lasting affects on people. The beginning pages start right off with the amazing predicaments Lucy is forever finding herself in. She wants so much to be a photograher who is taken seriously, but everyone from her Dad to the town newspaper editor doesn't give her any hope. When she finds herself in just the right spot for taking pictures of a stage hold-up she thinks she has hit success. but things just don't seem to ever go right for Lucy. She meets up with David Wolfe, a man the town folks think is a "wild man" and she is determined to prove the people wrong, but she only ends up making matters worse for David. (You will love the way he gets her to stop talking!)

Then you find yourself trying to unravel the mystery of David's past and how it intertwines with 4 of the prominent men in town. There is laughter and delight all through the story, but also sadness and mystery and intrigue. It was a story that caught my attention at the very beginning and kept me guessing about how it would end. I thoroughly enjoyed my time reading this story and look forward to reading the other two stories in this series. I want to thank BookSneeze and Thomas Nelson Publishers for sending me this story for review.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


I thoroughly enjoyed this story. It had a very unique beginning to the story and kept my attention all the way through. I like the writing style of Delia Parr.

Annabelle finds herself married to Harrison Graymoor (and how it happens was quite interesting). Neither one of them plan to stay married, but must, for appearances, look happily married until the annullment comes through. So you have two very determined individuals, who are forced into a situation, who are both trying very hard not to like each other and definately NOT to fall in love.

I appreciated Annabelle and her desire to "befriend" everyone; the servants, staff and even the down and out. Her motto for life pretty much summed up how she tried to live, "If you live a life centered on the love God has for you, He'll always give you the strenth to embrace love and the courage and grace to face all the disappointments that life can hurl at you." I also liked how Harrison tried to be uncaring, but secretly he was always doing something nice. And I loved the head housekeeper at Graymoor Gardens - she was a dear lady, who didn't mind speaking her mind! There was heartaches, secrets and sadness, but alot of caring and love throughout the book and I enjoyed every minute of it. I want to thank Bethany House Publishers for sending me this book for review. I could have chosen several other books, but I must say the cover drew me to this one. Great job!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

KISSING COUSINS by Marcia Lynn McClure

WOW! Another great romantic read! If you liked the movie "Return to Me" you will love the setting of this story as the setting of this story and the music they played was constantly reminding of this movie. It is about the romance brewing between the waitress, Poppy Amore, and the chef-cook Swaggert Moretti, a six foot three inch handsome man who makes women look twice when they see him coming. It is a family run restaurant with good food and lots of fun and Poppy gets to work with the "family" who owns the business, Swaggert being a part of the family; someone Poppy has loved from afar for a long time and has never felt she stands a chance at winning his heart. And what woman wouldn't like to have two drop-dead gorgeous men vying for her attention, like Poppy does by the end of this story. But the whole after work scene in the story, where Swaggert gives Poppy her "number one thing she wants to do in life" was pretty toe tingling! It was one of those stories I couldn't put down until the end. It was fun all the way through! Left me with a smile on my face and love in my heart. "That's Amore!"

Friday, June 3, 2011

SPRING FOR SUSANNAH by Catherine Richmond

This was a story that after I finished reading, I closed the book with a feeling of joy and satisfaction. It was a feel good story, even though there were elements throughout the story with sorrow and heartache in them. I will look forward in the future to hopefully reading more of Catherine Richmond's books as this was her debut.

Susannah finds herself arriving in the Dakota territory married to a man she has yet to meet (which I thought was quite interesting in itself). She has grown up in a home where love was never openly displayed and rarely shown, and her self-confidence level is very low. Her new husband Jesse is a breath of fresh air. What was there not to like about this character. I thoroughly enjoyed his personality and how he eventually brought out the best in Susannah. There was sadness, heartaches and pain in the story; but there was also alot of love and understanding and folks who endured and came out stronger in their love for one another and in their faith in their God. I feel it was time well spent in reading this story and would like to thank Thomas Nelson Publishers/ BookSneeze for sending me this book for review.