Friday, July 21, 2017

An Amish Courtship

GIVEAWAY
DREXLER, JAN
AN AMISH COURTSHIP

Amish Redemption

Samuel Lapp all but accepts his estrangement from the Amish community -- until Mary Hochstetter moves in next door to care for her elderly aunt. The young woman with the pretty brown eyes sees Samuel differently than his neighbors do. If he can earn her respect while helping with her aunt's chores, perhaps the rest of the community will follow. But Samuel can't let Mary get too close, lest he disappoint her, as well.

Mary's relocation to Shipshewana, Indiana means confronting her deepest fears. By helping Samuel rebuild his life and his farm, she finally feels ready to embrace her future. But as their delicate friendship grows deeper, they both must overcome their painful pasts before they can build a home together.

My Review:

Sometimes a romance reader loves the challenge a reclusive, grumpy, close-to-broken-down hero brings to a novel. Samuel's story is poignant and funny and heart-wrenching. And the way some characters treated him made my blood boil! Emotionally engaged doesn't begin to describe the way An Amish Courtship hit me. Samuel has all but given up the fight to prove his worth in a community bent on judging him by his father's actions. And then Mary moves to Shipshewana.

And even though she's burdened by a horrific secret, she finds herself drawn to Aunt Sadie's taciturn neighbour. The fresh perspective Mary brings both captivates and terrifies Samuel. The truths he has grown up with suddenly shift and, as a result, he's challenged to rethink his future. And he begins to think Mary belongs in it.

A stupendous historical romance filled with heart and faith and a hard-earned happily ever after.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of An Amish Courtship, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to your subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 23 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

On Love`s Gentle Shore

GIVEAWAY
JOHNSON, LIZ
ON LOVE`S GENTLE SHORE

Natalie O`Ryan had no plans to return to Prince Edward Island. But when her fiancé books their wedding in her hometown and schedules a summer at Red Door Inn, she sets out to plan the perfect wedding. Yet she can`t possibly plan for a run-in with Justin Kane -- the best friend she left behind all those years ago after promising to stay.

Justin has never forgotten Natalie. He`d been prepared to follow her off the island until tragedy struck, leaving him to run the family dairy farm. He`s done the best he can with the life that was thrust upon him -- but with Natalie back in the picture, he begins to realize just how much joy he`s been missing.

After Natalie`s reception venue falls through she must scramble to find an alternative, and the only option seems to be a barn on Justin`s property. As they work together to get the dilapidated building ready for the party, Natalie and Justin may discover that there is more between them than broken promises and old friendship.

My Review:

True confession: I really don't like love triangle romances. And I really, really don't like it when either the hero or heroine is engaged to one person while developing a relationship with someone else. So I hesitated reading On Love's Gentle Shore since Natalie is engaged and is getting married in her hometown where her first love just happens to still live.

Angst Alert!

But, here's the thing -- I adore this series and I trust Liz Johnson to deliver an impactful story so...I took a deep breath and dived in...and loved every emotionally gut-wrenching minute. (Not to mention the Prince Edward Island location softens the blow somewhat.)

Johnson has such an exquisite way with words that she lulls me into a reading stupor even in the gnarly parts. Like this: "Russell's words hung out there like underclothes on the line, too embarrassing to take down after someone else pinned them up for the whole town to see." (p.40) I mean, if you're going to read a tumultuous story you might as well enjoy the prose!

Natalie and Justin reunite after fifteen years of misunderstandings and bitterness. They were seventeen when their respective worlds shattered and acted with as much immaturity as you'd expect teenagers to. I had to keep reminding myself of that as the story unfolded. Especially where Natalie was concerned.

She might have fled the island but the emotional damage she endured as a child stayed with her. She just buried the hurt and uncertainty under a polished facade. Her life is a charade and it starts to unravel the second she sets foot on the island. Justin has allowed bitterness to take hold of his heart. Resentment and anger surface when he lays eyes on Natalie for the first time since they were kids. These two have a lot to work through before they can finally be free to see hope in their future.

Painful and thought-provoking and uplifting. This isn't just an exceptional love story -- it's a cautionary tale on the power words play in our lives. Both words spoken to us and by us. On Love's Gentle Shore would make an excellent book club read because of the depth of discussion starting points.

Book provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications Ltd.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to read a copy of On love's Gentle Shore, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 23 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

A Name Unknown

GIVEAWAY
WHITE, ROSEANNA M.
A NAME UNKNOWN

She's out to steal his name. Will he steal her heart instead?

Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins who helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they are no longer pickpockets -- instead they focus on high value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. Rosemary is beginning to question whether she can continue in this life when she's offered the challenge of a lifetime -- determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany. After all how does one steal a family's history, their very name?

As Europe moves ever close to World War I, rumors swirl around Peter Holstein. Awkward and solitary, but with access to the king, many fear his influence. But Peter can't help his German last name and wants to prove his loyalty to the Crown -- so he can go back to anonymously writing a series of popular adventure novels. When Rosemary arrives on his doorstep pretending to be a well-credentialed historian, Peter believes she's the right person to help him dig through his family's past.

When danger and suspicion continue to mount, both realize they're in a race against time to discover the truth -- about Peter's past and about the undeniably attraction kindling between them.

My Review:

Clever concept brilliantly executed and I'm in a euphoric tizzy because this is the first in a new series. A kind of Dickens meets Austen with a healthy dose of Downton Abbey thrown in.

Rosemary is such a complex character. Charming and intelligent and fiercely dedicated to her self-made family of orphans picked off the London streets. As a child she survived by her prowess as a pickpocket; as an adult she's graduated to more refined thievery. She's a chameleon who can fit in anywhere so it isn't a stretch for her to take on the persona of a historical librarian. Squeeeallll. Yes, I said librarian. I do so love stories that glorify my chosen profession. :-)

Dear, sweet Peter is an atypical hero and I so love that about him. I'll let you discover his eccentricities for yourself, but though his demeanor might not always show it, he possesses a warrior's heart. Peter looks for the good in everyone, even though his German name is causing unfounded prejudice in his Cornish village. Cue the political intrigue and the reason Rosemary enters his household under false pretenses.

I'm still swooning over the snappy dialogue -- especially when Rosemary gets her Cockney dander up. Hysterical. She's an enigma that Peter can't quite grasp. She finds his mysterious ways  at odds with his gentle kindness. No matter how hard she digs, Rosemary can't find any dirt on Peter...until she discovers the most astonishing secret of all!

The dynamics between these two are sublime. Especially as Peter gently leads Rosemary to Christ in the touching inspirational thread that weaves its way through the story. This book has it all -- romance, humour, intrigue and the wonder of new found faith.

Book provided courtesy of Bakers Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of A Name Unknown, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you leave your email in your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 23 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Plain Retributiion

GIVEAWAY
LYNN, DANA R.
PLAIN RETRIBUTION

Amish Abduction

Ten years ago while on rumspringa, Rebecca Miller and her friends were kidnapped and held captive...and now, living in the English world, she's nearly abducted again. One by one her friends, who once helped send their abductor again. One by one her friends who once helped send their abductor to jail are targeted, and she is next...unless police officer Miles Olsen can stop a killer. Deaf since birth, the only person on the force that Rebecca can communicate with is Miles, and he needs this case to redeem himself of past mistakes. When the relentless killer tracks them deep into the heart of Amish country, protecting Rebecca must be Miles's sole focus. Because a mistake this time will cost something worth more to him than his job -- the woman he's falling for.

Amish Country Justice: Protected in Plain sight.

My Review:

Phew! I'm still breathless from the page-turning ending to this gripping suspense. Talk about a white-knuckled read! My poor book is a little worse for wear after the reckless way I raced through it. Compelling doesn't begin to cover it.

First off -- loved the insights the author shares about the Deaf community and ASL. Some things I knew and some I didn't and Lynn does an excellent job of portraying the many facets that make up Rebecca. The author really got under her skin and helped me see the world through Rebecca's unique perspective. Particularly how she could feel a part of something but left out at the same time. This heroine has an inner core of strength that has helped her carry on after the devastating abduction she endured as a teen. And she has to face a whole lot more as the past catches up to her.

Miles is determined to serve and protect and that means viewing Rebecca as a victim instead of the captivating woman he can't seem to resist. Romantic tension in spades! But dodging a ruthless killer while trying to figure out who he is takes precedence over love...until it's nearly too late. A thrilling story with a light Amish flavour.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Plain Retribution, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title in the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 23 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Dark Deception

GIVEAWAY
MEHL, NANCY
DARK DECEPTION

Kate O'Brien's quiet life in  small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas, is shaken when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and she's been in witness protection ever since.

When new evidence arises to suggest the convicted man wasn't the murder, she's subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Afraid to go back into that world, Kate only agrees if Tony DeLuca, the deputy Marshal who protected her during the original trial, escorts her to St. Louis.

Tony readily takes on the assignment; Kate's beauty and inner strength made more of an impression on him than he expected. But when Kate's safety is threatened, Tony must race against the clock to keep her alive and put this ugly case to rest before anyone else gets killed.

My Review:

A nail-biting thriller that kept me riveted (and checking my windows and doors to make sure they were locked!) The intricate plot includes some fascinating police procedurals that had me puzzling over clues right along with law enforcement. Mehl masterfully pulls all the pieces together at a tantalizing pace -- not too fast, not too slow. There's plenty of time to ponder and figure things out while looking askance at something a character says or jumping out of your skin when the hero or heroine gets that edgy feeling. I was on tenterhooks the whole read!

Kate's personal journey really made an impact on me. She has been through something so horrendous it's hard to grasp and she's done an admirable job of getting on with her life - battling the darkness by holding it at bay. It isn't until she reconnects with Tony that she discovers burying the past isn't the same as getting through it. What results is an astounding faith journey that brings her peace at last.

A compelling addition to the Defenders of Justice series. This is Book Two in the series but reads easily as a standalone. Looking forward to the release of Blind Betrayal next spring.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Dark Deception, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title in the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 23 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

July Giveaway - Week Three


WON BY MARIAN BAAY

WON BY MINDY

WON BY SUSAN P.

WON BY PAULA

WON BY CC

WON BY CARYL KANE
As always, I will contact the winners by email, however, thanks to the nefarious ways of the Internet, my email might land in your spam folder so keep your eyes peeled! If you haven't heard from me by Monday evening, please email me your snail mail address at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. From time to time a winner and I don't seem to connect so I have a month time frame. If I can't reach you within four weeks your win will be forfeited. 



Saturday, July 15, 2017

Fatal Mistake

GIVEAWAY
SLEEMAN, SUSAN
FATAL MISTAKE

An FBI agent must protect the woman who can identify a terrorist bomber in bestselling author Susan Sleeman's riveting romantic suspense novel.

Tara Parrish is the only person ever to survive an attack by the Lone Wolf bomber. Scared and emotionally scarred by her near death, she goes into hiding with only one plan -- to stay alive for another day. She knows he's coming after her, and if he finds her, he will finish what he started.

Agent Cal Riggins has had only one goal for the past six months -- to save lives by ending the Lone Wolf's bombing spree. To succeed, he needs the help of Tara Parrish, the one person who can lead them to the bomber. Cal puts his all into finding Tara, but once he locates her, he realizes that if he can find her, the Lone Wolf can too. He must protect Tara at all costs, and they'll both need to resist the mutual attraction growing between them to focus on hunting down the bomber, because one wrong move could be fatal.

My Review:

We interrupt our regularly scheduled Saturday Retro Read for a stellar new release because...well, just because.

I love the way Susan Sleeman spins a romantic suspense! I think I fell truly, deeply in love with her writing style after reading her First Responders series (Love Inspired Suspense) so I was thrilled to discover this new series which has a similar set up. Over the moon giddy, actually. And with good reason.

Two words. Romantic tension. Oh la la -- you can cut it with a knife. Taut and toe curling all the way through the read. So many reasons why Tara and Cal shouldn't acknowledge that attraction -- and they do make a valiant effort -- which just builds up the tension even more. Delicious.

And the stalkerish suspense is compelling. A truly sinister bad guy -- brilliantly fleshed out -- not quite to the point where a reader can sympathize with him, but enough that she can understand his insanely flawed logic. The Lone Wolf is a force to be reckoned with which really ups the suspense to a nail-biting thrill.

And one of the things that Sleeman does best is create a memorable team with lots of camaraderie and purpose. She introduces all the White Knights, an FBI Critical Incident Response Team, in this first book -- and takes enough time to give us a good sense of their personalities and relationships. I'm excited to continue getting to know them all in future books as they each (hopefully) get a chance to star in their own riveting suspense story.

Fatal Mistake has it all -- intriguing suspense, hair-raising danger and the lure of forbidden love. The only thing keeping me from falling into the woe-is-me-it's-all-over-boohoo blues is the sweet anticipation that comes from knowing Book Two, Kill Shot will be releasing in February.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Fatal Mistake, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 16 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Heart on the Line

GIVEAWAY
WITEMEYER, KAREN
HEART ON THE LINE

A Ladies of Harper's Station Novel

When Danger Arrives, it's more than just her heart on the line

Grace Mallory is tired of hiding. She hungers for a normal life, perhaps even a suitor like two of her friends in Harper's Station have found. But when the man she believes responsible for her father's death discovers her whereabouts, survival takes priority.

Amos Bledsoe prefers bicycles to horses and private conversations over the telegraph wire to social gatherings with young ladies who see him as nothing more than an oddity. His fellow telegrapher, the mysterious Miss G, has been the ideal companion. For months, their friendship -- dare he believe, courtship? -- over the wire has fed his hope that he has finally found the woman God intends for him. However, when he intercepts an ominous message and discovers her life is in peril, Amos must shed the cocoon of his quiet nature to become the hero Grace requires.

My Review:

Witemeyer has a flair for romantic comedy and it really shines in this novel. The kind of story that induces grins and giggles while a reader basks in the warm glow of all that humour and romance.

Speaking of which..Amos Bledsoe!!!! An unconventional hero. Tall and lanky. A bespectacled telegraph operator who prefers bicycles to horses. A man of intellect, not action...unless the woman he loves is in danger! And the fact that Grace and Amos begin their romance courtesy of the telegraph wires! Online dating in the 1890s -- so much fun!!!!

I love the mix of Historical and Suspense so the danger and intrigue upped my reading pleasure to euphoric levels. :-) Amos comes charging to the rescue on an unusual steed which results in a huge mix-up that can only be sorted out by Morse Code (of course!) Honestly, the way this story is put together is sheer brilliance.

Grace and Amos match wits and intellect to bring resolution to Grace's desperate dilemma as a sinister villain closes in on them. Page-turning stuff of the highest caliber.

An abundance of love, laughter and danger combine to make this an exciting addition to the Ladies of Harper's Station novel. (And there's even a bonus secondary romance to swoon over!)

Please note: Heart on the Line can be read as a standalone novel, though you'll want to read the first book in the series, No Other Will Do, because it's sooo good. And the author has two Ladies of Harper's Station novellas as well.

Book provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Heart on the Line, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it`s easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 16 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Murder on the Moor

GIVEAWAY
DEERING, JULIANNA
MURDER ON THE MOOR

The rolling, frigid mists that creep in over the Yorkshire moors hide a mystery as challenging as Drew as ever faced.

At the urgent request of an old school friend, Drew and Madeline Farthering come to Bloodworth Park Lodge in the midst of the Yorkshire moors, a place as moody and mysterious as a Bronte hero. There have been several worrisome incidents around those lonesome rolling hills -- poetry desecrated, fires started, sheep and cattle scattered. Worst of all, the vicar has been found dead on the steps of the church, a crime for which Drew can discern no motive at all.

Few in the town of Bunting's Nest seem like suspects, and Drew can't keep his suspicions from falling on his friend's new bride. Do her affections lie more with her husband's money and estate, while her romantic interests stray to their fiery Welsh gamekeeper? As the danger grows ever closer, it's up to Drew to look past his own prejudices, determined what's really going on, and find the killer before it's too late.

My Review:

Fans of BBC crime shows like Father Brown and Miss Marple will absolutely adore Julianna Deering's Drew Farthering Mysteries. It's a mesh of Downtown Abbey meets Agatha Christie with a healthy dose of droll humour rolled in. Each book reads well as a standalone so feel free to dive right in with this book even if you haven't read any of the others.

Wealthy aristocrat, Drew Farthering is an amateur sleuth in 1930s England. Madeline, his plain-speaking, Yankee-born wife, makes a great Watson to his Sherlock. Cue the playful banter and witty dialogue. Makes me grin just thinking about these two.

They are up against something sinister this time round. Nothing like a spooky English moor shrouded in fog to spike your heart rate! And there are no end of mysterious suspects to choose from. Clever plotting kept me guessing right to the end.

I really appreciate the way the author seamlessly weaves a faith thread throughout the story. Drew and Madeline are Christians -- in deed as well as word, which is somewhat unusual for their social circle. But Drew doesn't hesitate to share his faith when he feels prompted. Not in a preachy way, mind you. In a gentle, genuine delivery that even the most crotchety atheist can't take offence with. Refreshing and uplifting and brings so much depth to his character.

I honestly think the BBC needs to pick up this series as their next runaway period drama hit! These stories are that good! And Murder on the Moor might just be the best one yet.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Murder on the Moor, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 16 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Hidden Legacy

GIVEAWAY

BLACKBURN, LYNN HUGGINS
HIDDEN LEGACY

To save her child

Arriving home with the baby she's adopting, Caroline Harrison finds her house vandalized...and an intruder intent on shooting her. She's saved when police sirens approach, but all signs point to the little boy as the true target -- and the assailant won't give up. Now she has to rely on Detective Jason Drake, the man who once broke her heart, to figure out why someone's after her soon-to-be adoptive son. Reunited after thirteen years apart, Jason can't help but hope their love might be rekindled, but Caroline and her son's safety come first. Because if he wants a chance at a future -- and a family -- with them, they have to outrun a hit man.

My Review:

"The house had been ransacked." What a great opening line for a heart-stopping romantic suspense. It promises so much, even as it raises questions in a curious reader's mind. If my tummy wasn't flipping over the relentless attacks against Caroline and little Henry, it was flipping over a certain Detective who just happens to be an old love interest. The one that got away, though Caroline's heart is having a difficult time believing that it's really over. She's guarded. He's wary. But their past differences have to be put aside so they can deal with the ever present danger. Delicious tension -- both romantic and suspense -- amped up my reading frenzy and I devoured Hidden Legacy in an afternoon.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Hidden Legacy, leave a comment below, or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email in your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 16 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Over Maya Dead Body

GIVEAWAY
ORCHARD, SANDRA
OVER MAYA DEAD BODY

Crime doesn't take a vacation

FBI Special Agent Serena Jones arrives on Martha's Vineyard with her family, ready for a bit of R & R and a lot of reminiscing as they celebrate the engagement of an old family friend. But when a suspicious death tied to an antiquities smuggling ring interrupts her picture-perfect trip, she's soon entangled in the investigation.

Propelled into danger, Serena must stay the course and solve this case before anyone else dies. But just how is she supposed to do that when the two men in her life arrive on the scene, bringing with them a boatload of romantic complications -- and even a secret or two?

My Review:

Campy and quirky and sooooooo much fun. The author's devious plotting leads Serena and company on a merry chase around Martha's Vineyard as they work on solving a very personal murder mystery. Madcap mayhem guaranteed! Aunt Martha is in her element and even Harold the Cat gets to pack his bag and cone holidaying...even if a murder interrupts the festivities before they really get started!

The mystery is brilliant. I think I suspected nearly every secondary character at some point in my read. And I was all too gullible in places, willing to be reeled in by multiple red herrings. I might just have to turn in my armchair sleuth credentials after finishing this novel!

This is the third and final book in the Serena Jones Mystery series and, honestly, I think it is best to read these books in order.. That's because of the developing romantic entanglements that carry over from one book to the next. And, hallelujah,we finally find out who Serena will spend her happily ever after with in Over Maya Dead Body!

In fact the author did something rather outrageous and totally intriguing -- she let readers vote for who Serena would choose as her Mr. Right. Fans quickly divided into teams -- Nate vs Tanner -- and all bets were off. Even Sandra Orchard didn't know what the romance outcome would be as she was writing this third book. Talk about gutsy. But she pulls it off brilliantly.

I have to admit to falling hard for both heroes -- wisecracking FBI agent Tanner and there's-more-than-meets-the-eye neighbour Nate. My heart feels rather pummeled now that I've watched it all play out to a stunning conclusion. And I loved every minute even though I'm not a fan of love triangles as a rule.

Clever from the unique cover art to the tongue-in-cheek title to the compelling story within. I loved this book so much that I savored it over a period of three days! (I usually read a book in a day or day and a  half.) But I didn't want this one to end even though I wanted to know how everything turned out. So I doled out my reading time in short installments and then giddily created my own spin offs scene by scene before picking up with the story once again. Reading Over Maya Dead Body was such a blast! I'll admit to feeling a bit melancholy now that it's all over.

Book provided courtesy of the author and Revell Publishing

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Over Maya Dead Body, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so that it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announce on Sunday July 16 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.

Monday, July 10, 2017

The Illusionist's Apprentice

GIVEAWAY

CAMBRON, KRISTY
THE ILLUSIONIST'S APPRENTICE

Not all illusions happen on the stage.

Wren Lockhart, apprentice to master illusionist Harry Houdini, uses life on a vaudeville stage to escape the pain of her past. She continues her career of illusion after her mentor's death, intent on burying her true identity.

But when a rival performer's act goes tragically wrong, the newly formed FBI calls on Wren to speak the truth -- and reveal her real name to the world. She transfers her skills for misdirection from the stage to the back halls of vaudeville, as she finds herself the unlikely partner in the FBI's investigation. All the while Houdini's words echo in her mind: Whatever occurs, the crowd must believe it's what you meant to happen. She knows that if anyone digs too deep, secrets long kept hidden may find their way to the surface -- and shatter her carefully controlled world.

Set during one of the richest, most vibrant eras in American history, this Jazz Age novel of illusion, suspense, and forgotten pasts is perfect for fans of The Magician's Lie, challenging all to find the underpinnings of faith on their own life's stage.

My Review:

The Illusionist's Apprentice has a delicious air of mystery that carries through from start to finish. Everything about Wren is cloaked in secrecy -- even to the reader. And Cambron carefully selects tidbits of information that she reveals with painstaking care. I was about driven mad with curiosity -- frantically searching for answers even as I slowed down in order to savor the sheer beauty of the tale.

All the complexities of Vaudeville make for an interesting backdrop for a suspense. So much scope for mystery and mayhem. And there's Wren in the middle of it all -- holding her own as she holds the world at arm's length. Until Special Agent Elliott Matthews breaks down her defences. He is captivated and intrigued, she's wary and aloof. Superb dynamics that made for some incredible romantic tension. And oh my goodness, but he makes a divine hero. Assured, determined, gentle. Wren can't intimidate him. He sees past the illusions she has created and into the heart of the sensitive young woman she really is.

A stunning romantic suspense that's quite unlike anything else out there.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of The Illusionist's Apprentice, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday 16 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

July Giveaway - Week Two


WON BY JANKA

WON BY MARTHA A.

WON BY ANDREA M.

WON BY TERRILL

WON BY RUBYNREBA

WON BY CINDY W.

As always, I will contact the winners by email, however, thanks to the nefarious ways of the Internet, my email might land in your spam folder so keep your eyes peeled! If you haven't heard from me by Monday evening, please email me your snail mail address at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. From time to time a winner and I don't seem to connect so I have a month time frame. If I can't reach you within four weeks your win will be forfeited. 

 LOOKING AHEAD TO NEXT WEEK'S GIVEAWAYS:

You might notice we have a suspenseful week ahead -- even the historical fiction has an element of suspense. I didn't plan it that way -- I must have been subconsciously craving suspense/mystery stories so that's what I grabbed from my TBR pile. My apologies to readers who aren't fans of suspense -- but the historicals are still worth the read for their delightful historicalness. :-)


Saturday, July 8, 2017

Midnight Sea


GIVEAWAY
 
COBLE, COLLEEN
MIDNIGHT SEA

A seemingly random shooting at her aunt's coffee farm has left Lani Tagama blind. Now she must learn to navigate in a world of darkness. With the help of an embittered ex-cop, Ben, and a half-trained guide dog., Fisher, Lani discovers she can regain a shadow of her former independence.

But strange and dangerous secrets lurk behind the beauty of this seaside paradise. Suspicious grows that this was not a random shooting, but an attempted murder, one with its roots in a hippie commune burned over thirty years ago. Lani realizes she is a target, and that she must find the shooter before he strikes again.

My |Review:

Published in 2007

Colleen Coble delivers another edge-of-your-seat romantic suspense in this fourth (and final) book in the Aloha Reef series. The books all read well as standalones so no worries if you haven't read the other novels. If you have though, you'll recognize Lani as the 'wild' child' Tagama sister, but now, as a new Christian, she is trying to put that past behind her for good. Trouble is, not everyone is willing to forget. Including Ben, who holds a pretty big grudge against her. Perfect fodder for an angsty love story.

Not that this story really needs any more angst courtesy of the riveting suspense plot. There's murder, smuggling and danger lurking around every corner. And I just have to mention Fisher, the work-in-progress guide dog! I do love a great canine character to mix things up! A heart-pounding thrill of a read.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance at winning a copy of Midnight Sea by Colleen Coble, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 9 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Friday, July 7, 2017

Tracking Secrets

GIVEAWAY

WOODHAVEN, HEATHER
TRACKING SECRETS

Caught in the crosshairs

A dog-sitting favor for a friend takes a terrifying twist when the police-dog-in-training runs off and leads Alexis Thompson into the middle of a drug drop. Only the quick thinking of a passing stranger gets them both out alive. Veterinarian Nick Kendrick, who's running for mayor, knows the race for survival is just beginning. As moving targets, he and Alexis must work together to learn the identity of the drug ring's murderous mastermind. But having killers on their tail isn't the only problem they face. Alexis's past as a disbarred lawyer could jeopardize Nick's political future. Only by putting their dreams and their safety on the line can they eliminate the threat to their town, and find a way forward together...

My Review:

Gasp! A heroine who doesn't like dogs?! With a hero who loves animals so much that he's a veterinarian? This pair is doomed right from their eventful first meeting. Luckily Raven the black lab has their back. :-) And they will need all her matchmaking skills as well as her finely tuned canine nose to help them reach their happily ever after.

Thrilling action, a puzzling mystery to solve and the relentless threat of danger kept me frantically turning pages. So did Raven's gentle human whispering until romance -- albeit reluctantly -- blossoms between Alexis and Nick. Romantic suspense at its finest. Blissful sigh.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Tracking Secrets, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email in a comment remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 9 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Her Guilt : the Amish of Hart County

GIVEAWAY

GRAY, SHELLEY SHEPARD
HIS GUILT : the Amish of Hart County

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Shelley Shepard Gray delivers the next novel in her Amish of Hart County series -- a suspenseful tale of an Amish man who will risk all to protect the woman he loves.

Mark Fisher has returned home to Hart County determined to put the past behind him. Two years ago after being wrongly accused of assault, he left the Amish community, though he never forgot his home. When the one person who helped him through rough times asks for help, Mark returns. But it is pretty Waneta Cain who makes him want to stay...

Neeta is one of the view people in Hart County who doesn't believe Mark is guilty of hurting anyone. However, his worldliness and tough exterior make her uneasy. As she begins to see the real man behind all the gossip and prejudice, she wonders if he is the man for her.

Just when Mark starts to believe a new life is possible, a close friend of Neeta's is attacked. Once again, everyone in the community seems to believe Mark is guilty. But what hurts him most is Neeta's sudden wariness around him. When another woman is hurt -- a woman who is close to both Neeta and Mark -- Mark fears he knows the real culprit. And time is running out. Will Mark be able to find the perpetrator before Neeta becomes his next victim?

My Review:

A complicated love story cloaked in suspense. An unusual combination for an Amish novel and I love the edginess Gray brings to her story. It's full of imperfect characters making flawed decisions that have far reaching ramifications. Lots of juicy, gnarly stuff that makes you think and squirm and come away a better person.

Even in this tight-knit Amish community, Mark can't escape the shadow of his past. It doesn't matter that he's not guilty of any wrong doing if everyone still thinks he is. Prejudice fuels gossip and soon he's second guessing his return to Hart County. But for the kindness and faith of a few, he'd be truly lost.

The gossip ensnares Neeta, and she struggles to separate fact from fiction as she begins to develop a friendship with Mark. Wary. Confused. Feeling pulled in two directions, it takes awhile for Neeta to see the truth and gain the confidence to stand by it.

Shelley Shepard Gray once again brings inspiration and hope into the lives of characters facing real and raw issues. But she doesn't leave it there. She throws in a sinister suspense plot that kept me riveted right through to the hair-raising conclusion. A spellbinding read.

Book provided courtesy of Avon Inspired and Litfuse Publicity Group.

http://litfusegroup.com/author/SGray

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of His Guilt : the Amish of Hart County, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you leave your email in your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 9 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!


Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Fatal Cover-Up

GIVEAWAY

HARRIS, LISA
FATAL COVER-UP

Deadly Conspiracy

Talia Morello moved to Rome for a fresh start --- but instead finds herself at the center of a deadly art smuggling ring with everything to lose, including her life. Someone's dead set on retrieving three priceless paintings believed to have been stolen by Talia's late husband. And when his unsolved murder is linked to the bullet that killed FBI agent Joe Bryant's brother during a museum heist, Joe is determined to find out all of Talia's secrets. When she denies any involvement, Joe's gut and heart tell him to trust her. But with the target on Talia's back only growing, there may not be time to uncover the whole truth and save the woman he's falling for...

My Review:

It isn't often that you find a Love Inspired Suspense novel 'on location' so I was thrilled to travel to Italy with Talia and Joe. The 'exotic' (to me, anyway) locale made this romantic suspense even more exciting. And the author sneaks in fascinating facts about Rome, Florence and Venice as our intrepid hero and heroine chase down stolen art while dodging a lethal pursuer.

I love that Talia acts more like I probably would when confronted by death and destruction. :-) She's scared and it shows. But trembling limbs and the occasional crying jag aside, Talia draws on an inner strength she didn't know she had to cope with the whole ordeal. And it's that courage and determination that attracts Joe in a totally unprofessional way.

A twisty-turny plot prompted a reading binge that kept me up past bedtime and just when I was lulled into a false sense of security -- bam -- I wasn't! Gotta love an author that keeps a reader on her toes!

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:
If you would like a chance to win a copy of Fatal Cover-Up, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it is easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 9 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

A Rose So Fair

GIVEAWAY

JOHNSON, MYRA
A ROSE SO FAIR

Plucky Rose Linwood grew up on her grandfather's Arkansas tenant farm, a life her two older sisters never cared much for. Working alongside her grandpa, though, Rose learned to love the land as much as he did. Now her sisters have married and moved on, Grandpa has gone to his eternal reward, and Rose is determined to make a go of the farm on her own. But crops have been slow to recover since the drought of 1930-31, and the whole country struggles in the grip of the Great Depression. Drifters looking for work or handouts roam the countryside, some of them up to no good, so Rose keeps her trusty Winchester rifle at the ready.

Caleb Wieland, Rose's best friend, isn't the farmer his late father was, and he's about to lose his cotton crop to boll weevils. He'd let the farm go and search for work he's more suited to, except he can't desert his widowed mother. Besides, he's been quietly falling in love with Rose since they were in grammar school, and the thought of leaving her behind is too much to bear. He'd give anything to win her heart, but Rose's stubborn independence is proving as thorny as the flower for which she's named.

My Review:

I'm both excited and a little sad to be reading the last book in Myra Johnson's Flowers of Eden series. I feel like I'm saying goodbye to very dear friends with no idea if I'll ever meet up with them again.

The author has given avid fans of the Linwood sisters a stupendous send off though, with plenty of sisterly interaction and a heartwarming epilogue that I savored in a contented buzz of bibliophile delight. No worries if you haven't read the first two books -- The Sweetest Rain and Castles in the Clouds -- book three can definitely be read as a standalone...though I highly recommend reading the entire series.

So what captivates me about this series? Definitely the Linwood sisters. Each uniquely talented in a different way -- but they all share one common familial trait -- pigheaded stubborness! Which makes for some great sibling dynamics, aka, hot-headed discussions. But Bryony, Lark and Rose are also fiercely loyal to one another. There's no doubting their mutual love, though their strong personalities often clash.

And speaking of strong personalities and stubbornness -- throw in a healthy dose of fiesty and more than a dash of digging-in-my-heels-and-never-giving-up and you get a good idea of what Rose is like. As pretty -- and thorny-- as her name.

Caleb is smitten...but our prickly Rose doesn't make it easy for him. She doesn't do change well (and I can totally relate to that!) But there have been a lot of changes in her life in recent years -- both sisters marrying, the birth of a niece, the death of her beloved grandfather...it's enough to send her running scared. There is something so heartwarming about Caleb's steadfast loyalty -- his sweet determination to woo Rose and win her heart.

Their tumultuous love story is set against the backdrop of a nation struggling to recover from a severe economic downturn. Johnson has incorporated some fascinating details into the plot and her author's note at the back of the book is worth reading. I learned a lot and, as I've said before, I love getting history lessons through fiction!

An exceptional conclusion to the Flowers of Eden series -- even though I'm reluctant to leave Eden behind.

My Review:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of A Rose So Fair, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to your comment remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so that it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 9 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Monday, July 3, 2017

One Dominion : Celebrating Canada, Prepared for a Purpose (Review) + Maggie's War (Giveaway)

Canada has just celebrated her 150th birthday and to commemorate this historic event I'd like to share a review of an inspiring non-fiction book about this great country. But -- since we're all about great Christian Fiction here at Best Reads, I'm also hosting a giveaway for Canadian author Terrie Todd's latest release, Maggie's War. Read below for further details.

Beasley, Bob
Richardson, Paul
One Dominion : Celebrating Canada, Prepared for a Purpose

Canada is not a nation of one story alone, but of many stories, from ordinary people, and often ordinary people of faith, who helped form the foundations of our wonderful country. This book takes time to pause and reflect on the stories of these ordinary men and women of God who contributed to the fabric of our nation. Let us not just celebrate the blessings we enjoy today because of them, but learn from their example and, as we look to the future of our country, perhaps be inspired to action as well.

My Review:

A beautiful coffee table book that just begs to be picked up and leafed through. Stunning photographs highlight what makes this country unique -- both in landscape and the faces of the people who call Canada home. The authors draw from this country's rich history, choosing to share how Christians have made a difference in developing this nation. It reminds readers that our very foundation is based upon the faith of our forefathers and while we enjoy the blessings that comes from the fruit of their labours, we can be inspired to action as well.

Book provided courtesy of Bible League Canada and Graf-Martin Communications.


 
GIVEAWAY
TODD, TERRIE
MAGGIE'S WAR

After a lifetime of wrong turns, three faithful hearts are on the road to redemption.

In 1942, telegram always bring life-altering and tragic news in a war-hardened world -- and the one Maggie Marshall receives i no different. But running a restaurant with the help of only pregnant, unwed girls has taught her to be tough. Maggie's no weeping widow, but Charlotte Penfield thinks she's the most unfeeling woman on earth. Seventeen, exiled by her wealthy parents, and working in the restaurant, fanciful Charlotte runs away with romantic notions of a reunion with her baby's father at his military camp.

It has been years since Maggie darkened the church door of her pastor and childhood friend, Reverend Reuben Fennel, and his heart breaks for the hardened woman Maggie's become. When she seeks his help to find Charlotte, he's happy to aid her in the chase -- though it may cost him his job and reputation.

Over the miles from Winnipeg to Fort William, Reuben and Maggie's journey rekindles their affection -- and their dreams of what they still could be. But Maggie stubbornly clings to her independent ways until she's dealt another devastating loss, one that forces her to recognize that heroes can be discovered in unlikely places and love may be far sweeter than she ever dared imagine.

My Review:

Maggie Marshall's curmudgeonly ways are threatening to consume what's left of her heart. Charlotte, the pregnant teen under Maggie's care has nicknamed her Grumpystiltskin -- though she'd never dream of saying that out loud! Maggie's hard enough to please without riling her up any more. Pastor Reuben Fennel barely recognizes the sweet, carefree girl he once loved.

The fact is, Maggie has allowed circumstances to steal away her joy. She's faced some insurmountable hardships and survived -- that has to count for something, right? Even if it's left her a shell of the woman she once was. Maggie isn't very likable at the start of this story but she's intriguing and Todd does an amazing job of slowly revealing why Maggie is the way she is...and then sets out to redeem her.

Reuben plays an important role in this redemption story. He's a pastor but not a preacher. More like a shepherd, gently nudging his sheep back to the fold. His patience and forbearance stand him in good stead on the unusual journey he takes with Maggie and in the process he discovers the difference between faith and religion.

Touching and funny and completely captivating!

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Maggie's War, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If add your email in your comment remember to use AT and Dot instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 9 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!