Second Sleep

About the Book:

Second Sleep (Stanley Book 11) by [Diane Stanley]

Title: Second Sleep
Author: 
Diana Stanley
Publisher:
Quill Tree Books
Release Date: 
November 2, 2021
Genre:
Children’s Fiction

o get Max and Rosie’s minds off their mother’s mysterious disappearance, their grandmother, Mozelle, suggests that they visit the old log cabin where their mom spent her summers as a child. This is a place where, when it gets dark, you go to bed. But according to Mozelle, their mother had her happiest dreams during her nights at the lake. T

That first night, Max and Rosie travel in their dreams to an almost impossibly beautiful place where they meet a wonderful new group of friends. But was it really just a dream? Or is there something extraordinary and magical about this compound by the lake?

As Max slowly grasps what is really going on, he wonders if he might have found the key to the mystery of his mother’s disappearance—and how to bring her safely home.

Book Review:

I have always enjoyed middle grade novels. I am older now, but I’m still reading and loving them! However I haven’t had a chance to review any until now. Second Sleep is a wonderful book. It has mystery, friendship, and touches of a dreamlike magic which makes sense since it’s all about dreams.

Max and Rosie’s mother has disappeared. No one knows where she went, and no one knows when she will return. Without their mother Max, Rosie, and their father start drifting away from each other. So their grandmother suggests they visit the old log cabin their mother used to spend her summers in. The first night Max and Rosie travel in their dreams to a strangely beautiful place. They meet new friends that seem so real that they wonder whether it was actually a dream. Max slowly starts to realize that this wonderful dream world might be the key to finding his mother and bringing her home.

This was such an interesting book, and honestly, I’m still trying to wrap my head around some of it. Max is trying to figure out how to navigate his life without his mother, and one of the things that really helped him was his friends in the dream world. I’m going to try and explain this, but I do think that half of the appeal is that it doesn’t totally make sense. After all, magic is never as fun when it’s explained all the way.

The dream world is filled with all the different kids who’ve spent summers in the lake. The fascinating thing though is that it’s all the kids from years before. For example, Max befriends a girl named, Lila who is 40ish years old in his time. But in the dream world, Lila is the same age as Max. As the days go by, Max starts to realize that this dream world holds clues to his mother’s disappearances. And it might even help him bring her home.

I thought that Ms. Stanley did an amazing job in keeping the plot moving with so many surprises. But I loved how there was a lot more emphasis on how much the characters were growing. The dream world was doing amazing things on Max and Rosie especially with the influence of their new friends. And the beautifulness of the nature around them. I would totally recommend this beautiful, magical book. There is a brief mention of a gay marriage.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

An Alleged Rogue

About the Book:

An Alleged Rogue - (Georgian Gentlemen, #3) by [Sian Ann Bessey]

Title: An Alleged Rogue
Series:
Georgian Gentlemen
Author: 
Sian Ann Bessey
Publisher:
Covenant Communications
Release Date: 
November 8, 2021
Genre:
Historical Romance

Lord Adam Dunsbourne is a tyrant. At least, that’s what everyone says. The tales are shocking: accounts of a man who gambled away the family fortune and keeps his younger sister, Emily, captive in their home at Dunsbourne Manor. So when Adam and his sister make an unexpected appearance at a dinner party, the scandalized whispers cannot be contained.

New to the town, Phoebe Hadford hears the condemning rumors and determines to do all she can to help the baron’s oppressed sister. Upon entering Dunsbourne Manor, however, she quickly discovers that all is not what she has been led to believe. 

Adam, though unsure of whether he can trust the intentions of his beautiful neighbor, is quickly drawn in by Phoebe’s genuine nature. But even as his and Phoebe’s connection deepens, a dangerous enemy from his past reemerges. For years, Adam has hunted for the man who betrayed him, not realizing he had only to wait. His foe has returned, and this time, he will threaten everything Adam cherishes most—including the woman he loves.

Book Review:

Another author that I found this year and ended up loving! An Alleged Rogue is the third book in Sian Ann Bessey’s Georgian Gentlemen series. And it was amazing! I read it in one day, I could not put it down! I am loving the whole series and this was just a sweet addition to a great series. 

Lord Dunsbourne was a tyrant or at least that is what everyone believed. He gambled away the family fortune, and he keeps his younger sister, Emily, captive in their own home at Donsbourne Manor. However, when Adam and his sister make an appearance at a dinner party, people begin to talk. New to town, Phoebe Hadford hears of the rumors surrounding the Lord Dunsbourne and determines to help the baron’s sister. But as she spends time at Dunsbourne Manor, she finds all is not as the rumors said. Adam and Phoebe find themselves drawn to each other. When a dangerous enemy from Adam’s past reemerges, Adam finds everything he cherishes threatened including this new woman who changed his life. 

Phoebe was a lot of fun. I liked how kind she was to those around her. She did not allow rumors or appearances to stop her from reaching out to others. Although others warned against it,  Phoebe wanted to get to know Adam’s sister, Emily. I love how Phoebe worked hard. She saw past the outer appearances and tried to make her own decisions about people rather than listening to rumors. 

Adam was a sweetheart! I could tell that he loved his sister, and he wanted to make his parents proud. He was working so hard to give his sister a better life and catch the man who ruined his family. I adored Adam, and I loved getting to know him. He worked hard, and he was willing to do hard work to help his family. However, he was also struggling. He wanted to provide for his sister, but times were tight. He also wanted to avenge his father, but his thirst for revenge may make life difficult for him

It was just so fun to read about Adam and Phoebe working together. They were simply the perfect match. They understood each other. But they had to learn to work through their trust issues and what it meant to fall in love. Adam was not the trusting type, but Phoebe helped him see the good in the world again. Adam helped Phoebe look beyond herself and see the value of people again. 

Adam’s sister, Emily was also sweet and I adored reading about her. She was a lot of fun and she brought life into Adam’s life. She was also a great friend to Phoebe. I hope she gets her own book. Adam’s servants were also sweet and so was Phoebe’s maid. The side characters were lovely. 

I just really loved An Alleged Rogue! I would totally recommend it! It is part of a series but it can be read standalone. An Alleged Rogue is a clean historical romance. 

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

First Christmas on Huckleberry Hill

About the Book:

First Christmas on Huckleberry Hill by [Jennifer Beckstrand ]

Title: First Christmas on Huckleberry Hill
Series:
Huckleberry Hill
Author: 
Jennifer Beckstrand
Publisher:
Zebra Books
Release Date: 
September 28, 2021
Genre: 
Amish Fiction

Before irrepressible eighty-somethings Anna and Felty Helmuth became Huckleberry Hill, Wisconsin’s most-beloved matchmakers, they were mismatched young lovers facing seemingly impossible obstacles . . .

She can’t cook, sew, sing, or clean. And no matter how hard young Anna Yoder tries, she’d much rather help people in trouble than be a well-behaved pretty face and properly perfect Amish maidel. So she instantly reaches out to her old schoolmate, Felty Helmuth, when their Amish town ostracizes him for his Korean War army service. He’s still the only one who’s ever understood Anna—and liked everything from her green Jello carrot salads to her love of books. And this holiday season, she can’t help hoping that somehow she and Felty can find a way to be the perfect match . . .

Felty sensed he was called by Gotte to serve his country, though it went against his community’s peaceful ways. Troubled by his wartime experiences, he is resigned to being an outsider avoided by most eligible Amish girls. But lively, intelligent Anna has grown into a warm-hearted generous woman who accepts Felty for who he is. And in the face of family and community opposition, he and Anna will take a leap of faith to prove they are made for each other—and a lifetime of happiness.
 

Book Review:

I have read so many of the Huckleberry Hill series, and one of the best things about them has always been Anna and Felty! The whole series is centered on the fact that Anna is trying to set up all of her great-grandchildren and grandchildren. They are hilarious, head over heels for each other, and completely confident in who they are. That’s why it was so interesting to see them insecure and unsure.

First Christmas on Huckleberry Hill is a prequel to the amazing Huckleberry series! It can be read as a stand alone, but I think it’s more fun to read it after the other books. Anna Yoder knows exactly what it feels like to be an outcast. She can’t cook, sew, or be anything that a good Amish girl should be. So when Felty Helmuth is ostracized after returning home from the Vietnam War, she can’t stay away. But what happens when she falls for the young soldier she can’t have?

I totally adored this book! Throughout the Huckleberry Hill series, Felty and Anna always know exactly what to say. They still mess up, but they’re both secure in who God has made them. In this book, we’re able to see how hard they had to work to get there though. Anna isn’t a total outcast in the sense that people dislike her, but she’s simply forgotten. Mothers think she’s sweet, but not good enough for their sons, and she’s never fit in with the other girls. Despite all of that, Anna has never lost her sense of joy and compassion towards others. I loved how much she cared about everyone, even those who were cruel to her. And it was so cute how Felty helped build her confidence!

Felty knew that God had called him to fight in the war despite the Amish’s vows of nonviolence. Even though he knew it was the right thing to do, it was still hard to come home to hate. Luckily, the one person whose opinion he cared the most about stuck by him. He has had a crush on Anna for years, and now that he was back he loved her even more. I adored Felty! I loved how rooted he was in his decision to follow God anywhere. He had a lot of deep scars, physically, emotionally, and mentally from the war, but he refused to grow bitter or cold. He even tried his hardest to show kindness to the other Amish.

I think one of my favorite things about this book was the constant theme of the need to be kind. It would have been really easy for Felty and Anna to become angry, but they chose to love others and find joy in life. And that brings up another one of my favorite things, there was still that steady humor in all the Huckleberry books! I adored this clean, romance, and I would recommend it to anyone who liked the other Huckleberry books. Or even anyone who loves a good Amish romance!

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

Love and Lavender

About the Book:

Mayfield Family, Book 4: Love and Lavender (Proper Romance) by [Josi S. Kilpack]

Title: Love and Lavender
Series:
Mayfield Family
Author: 
Josi S Kilpack
Publisher:
Shadow Mountain Publishers
Release Date: 
November 2, 2021
Genre: 
Historical Fiction

Hazel Stillman is a woman of rare independence and limited opportunities. Born with a clubbed foot, Hazel knows marriage is unlikely, so she devotes herself to teaching at a private girls’ school.

When her uncle offers Hazel a substantial inheritance is he marries, she is offended. What kind of decent man would marry for her money? But when she learns the school might be sold, she knows she must consider all her options.

Duncan Penhale thrives on order and process. He has no interest in marriage, so when Elliott Mayfield, his guardian’s brother, offers him an inheritance if he weds, Duncan finds it intrusive. However, an inheritance means he could purchase a building and run his own firm.

Hazel and Duncan believe they have found a solution to both of their problems: marry one another, claim their inheritances, and then part ways to enjoy their individual paths. But then Uncle Mayfield stipulates that they must first live together as a couple for one year.

Over time, their marriage of convenience becomes much more appealing than they had anticipated. At the end of the full year, will they go their separate ways or could an unlikely marriage have found unsuspecting love?

Book Review:

Okay, so each of these books keep on getting better and better! Love and Lavender is the fourth book in the Mayfield Family series. I was so excited to see that Hazel had her own story especially after reading Harry’s book!

Hazel Stillman was born the oldest child, the older sister but because of her clubbed foot she was outcast. Left basically on her own, Hazel learned how to make a life for herself working as a teacher. However when she finds out that her school may be sold, she finds herself needing to consider other options. Duncan Penhale has a brilliant mind and a need for order and process. He has no expectations of his life changing. When Elliot Mayfield, his guardian’s brother, presents him with an inheritance if he marries a woman of social standing, he finds it interesting but unimportant. However with his inheritance he could purchase the building he was working in and run his own firm. Hazel and Duncan come together with a solution to their problems, they could marry each other, receive their inheritances and part ways. But Elliot Mayfields puts his foot down and tells them they must leave together as husband and wife for a year, Duncan and Hazel reluctantly agree. Will they learn to love each other at the end of the year, or will they go their separate ways?

Hazel was so different from the women of her time. She had to be independent because of her clubbed foot, however she was also lonely; she wanted someone to love her for herself. Life had not been easy for her and there were times when she struggled with life. I really enjoyed reading about Hazel and seeing her more. I felt bad for her, But I was also amazed at all she had done. However she was a little jaded, a little weary of those around her. She had to care for herself so she didn’t quite know what to do with Duncan. Would she be able to let Duncan into her life and ultimately in her heart?

Duncan was a lovely character, I liked reading about him and learning about him. He was different from those around him and he knew it but that was his life. He was a sweet guy, but there were some things that made life harder for him, he processed things differently. I liked his growth as a character as he learned how to live and care for Hazel. Hazel was a person that made him feel special and helped him learn to live. However would he be able to show Hazel his love and help her see how much she has come to me to him?

Hazel and Duncan were super sweet together. They were both different and yet they found their place in the world through each other. I liked reading about them interacting with each other and watching them fall in love. They had a lot to overcome as they figured out how to be married to each other and how to build a life together. Were they willing to change their life in order to find happiness together?

Love and Lavender was just as good as I had hoped! The characters were awesome and relatable. I was cheering them on as they learned to work out their relationship. I would totally recommend it! Love and Lavender is a clean marriage of convenience, historical romance. 

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

Love on the Range

About the Book:

Love on the Range (Brothers in Arms Book #3) by [Mary Connealy]

Title: Love on the Range
Series:
Brothers in Arms
Author: 
Mary Connealy
Publisher:
Bethany House Publisher
Release Date: 
October 5, 2021
Genre: 
Historical Christian Fiction

Falling for someone who doesn’t want to get married is soon be the least of his concerns.

While his brothers and their new wives search for who shot him, Wyatt Hunt is temporarily bedridden and completely miserable. Somehow Molly Garner’s limited skills have made her the most qualified in their circle to care for Wyatt. But by the time he’s healed, she’s fed up with him and the whole ungrateful family. For even worse than his grumpiness were the few unguarded moments when he pulled at her heartstrings, and she has been long determined to never repeat her mother’s mistakes.

When alternate plans of finding her own independent life fall through, Molly volunteers to work for the Pinkertons and help investigate nearby ranch owner Oliver Hawkins. She signs on to be his housekeeper, hoping to find clues to prove his nefarious, and possibly murderous, past. Wyatt refuses to let her risk it alone and offers to act as Hawkins’s new foreman.

But when another Pinkerton agent gets shot, they realize Hawkins isn’t the only danger. The Hunt brothers will have to band together to face all the troubles of life and love that suddenly surround them.

Book Review:

The final book in the Brothers in Arms series by Mary Connealy, Love on the Range concludes the overarching story as well as telling Molly and Wyatt’s story. I love how Ms. Connealy’s series have larger stories across them, but still have individual stories within each book. The last book has usually been my favorite in her series, because of the characterization that has been done throughout and being able to see all the characters that you loved from the previous books. This series follows the Hunt brothers as they discover secrets about their father and establish a life for themselves in Montana. Wyatt was born and raised in Montana, but the revelation of two brothers who his father left shakes his world. Though he has mostly adjusted to the new arrivals and the revealed secrets about his father, some mysteries are still unsolved. After being shot and subsequently bedridden, Wyatt is left being cared for by Molly Garner whose limited skills make her the most qualified. Though by the end she is fed up with him, there are moments of gentleness that laeve her scrambling to guard her heart. For Molly has promised herself never to make the mistakes of her mother, she will not get married. Molly is looking for her independence, but when her original plans fall through, she volunteers for the Pinkertons. She is working as a housekeeper to investigate Oliver Hawkins on his possibly murderous past.  Following her, Wyatt becomes Hawkins’s foreman. But as danger approaches, it is more at stake than they know and the family must band together. 

I was so excited for this book! I had the opportunity to read the first two books and was waiting for Wyatt and Molly’s book! Molly had so much to her that we did not know about yet. She seemed really nice and had a lot of secrets. It is nice to finally hear her story and learn about her. She and Wyatt were really cute to read about. They were able to support one another, especially with the dangerous situation they found themselves in. It was cool how different each of the ladies in this series were, yet they all respected each other. Molly had a lot of domestic skills that allowed her to take the job to investigate. Wyatt was also very sweet. He was trying so hard to take care of everything that was happening and to protect Molly. The ranch was his home and where he wanted to be.

This story was very exciting! There were so many things that were finally revealed and it was cool to see some cameos from other series that I will not spoil. I liked the ending too, it felt like things were cleared up and tied up. There is some action, some light violence and reference to murder. Overall, I would recommend this to older teens and up. It is a clean historical fiction Christian book and the conclusion to a series. 

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

Cupcake

About the Book:

Cupcake by [Cookie O’Gorman]

Title: Cupcake
Author: 
Cookie O’Gorman
Publisher:
Entangled: Teen
Release Date: 
November 2, 2021
Genre: 
YA Fiction

I know what you’re thinking.

You’re thinking this will be just one more story of the ignored, “big-boned ” girl, who sheds her glasses and a few extra pounds and finally attracts the notice of the most popular guy in school.

Except it isn’t. Because I’m not unpopular. Not all that ignored. And I love the way I look—just as I am.

Then someone puts my name in for Homecoming Court.

The bigger surprise?

People actually vote for me!

Now, I’m a “princess”—whether I like it or not—but the guy I’m paired with isn’t exactly Prince Charming.

Rhys Castle is the strong, silent type who always wears a frown—he’s certainly never smiled at me. I’m 99.9% sure he hates being on Court and being my partner, but surprisingly…he doesn’t switch when he gets the chance.

Turns out Rhys has a secret—something that makes him run hot and cold throughout the entire three weeks of Homecoming festivities. Whether he’s stepping on my feet during dance lessons or gallantly escorting me through the Homecoming parade, I can’t get a read on this guy, and for the first time, I find my confidence wavering.

But there’s more to Rhys than meets the eye. And the more the spotlight shines on me, I realize there’s more to me, too.

Book Review:

This was such a cute and fun YA book! I enjoy reading YA books, but I am really picky. However I am happy to say that this was a winner! Cupcake is the first book that I have read written by Cookie O’Gorman and I loved it. I have her other books on my TBR now. 

Ariel was such a fun character to read about. She was fearless and she was confident. I adored the story and how O’Gorman wrote her. Ariel, or Cupcake which is what people called her at school, was a baker who baked whenever she felt stressed or really any kind of emotion. Cupcake was a relatable character. She wasn’t the most popular person in school but she was kind. I loved how she thought of others and how she loved to bake. 

Rhys was also an awesome character. He was the mysterious type, but as you got to know him you found a sweet thoughtful guy. I loved getting to know him and finding the kindness in him. However, he wasn’t perfect and he had struggles of his own. 

Okay, so what I really liked about this book was it wasn’t a book about Cupcake learning to love her body. She loved who she was and she was okay with being “different”. However, this book was about Cupcake learning more about herself and even seeing that it was okay to have some cracks in her confidence. She did love her body, but there were days where the voices of doubt got louder and it was okay. I loved the message this book gave, at least this was what I got out of this book. Being different and being yourself is something you should be proud of, don’t let the doubts of others bring you down. 

Cupcake was an awesome book! This was an amazing, clean, fun YA book. I would definitely recommend it to those who love reading teen books and even to those who don’t usually read teen books. This didn’t have a lot of unnecessary drama, but instead felt like it could be a real life situation. I would recommend Cupcake to those 13 and up

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

Fifty Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers

About the Book:

Title: Fifty Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers
Author: 
Caela Cater
Publisher:
Quill Tree Books
Release Date: 
October 19, 2021
Genre: 
Children’s Fiction

No one can figure out what Gwendolyn Rogers’s problem is—not her mom, or her teachers, or any of the many therapists she’s seen. But Gwendolyn knows she doesn’t have just one thing wrong with her: she has fifty-four.

At least, according to a confidential school report (that she read because she is #16. Sneaky, not to mention #13. Impulsive). So Gwendolyn needs a plan, because if she doesn’t get these fifty-four things under control, she’s not going to be able to go to horse camp this summer with her half-brother, Tyler.

But Tyler can’t help her because there’s only one thing “wrong” with him: ADHD.

And her best friend Hettie can’t help her because there’s nothing wrong with Hettie. She’s perfect.

So Gwendolyn is hopeless until she remembers the one thing that helped her mother when her own life was out of control. Or actually, the twelve things. Can these Twelve Steps that cured her mother somehow cure Gwendolyn too?

Book Review:

I am a huge reader, and I read a lot faster than most people. But I don’t normally finish a book in one day unless it was amazing. Fifty-Four Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers was one of those books. Ms. Carter has written a beautiful story, and it places you right in Gwendolyn’s head. You’ll root and cheer for Gwendolyn and you will feel for her every step of the way. It was almost making my heart hurt how badly I felt for her!

Gwendolyn Rogers knows something’s wrong with her. After she reads a school report, she knows that there’s actually fifty-four things wrong with her including being socially inept, picky about appearance, and forgetful. But if Gwendolyn wants to go to horse camp with her half-brother, Tyler, she’ll have to figure out how to get her fifty-four things under control. And she remembers that her mother did Twelve Steps to help her when her life was out of control. Maybe the same steps that helped her mother can help her too?

There were so many wonderful things about this book, but above all I loved the rawness of Gwendolyn’s voice. She was trying so hard to be perfect, and I felt incredibly bad for her as she tried to “fix” herself. And I thought it was eye opening to see how many thoughts and feelings she had inside her head. One of the reasons why I love reading books is because it gives you so much empathy for people. Fifty-Four Things Wrong with Gwendolyn Rogers was one of those books. It shows you how other people are struggling, and I believe it will help children to show kindness especially to people who are “weird”.

Thankfully, Gwendolyn had a lot of wonderful people in her life show kindness to her. I loved Tyler, and how the two of them clicked in such a wonderful way. It was hard for Gwendolyn because she adored her brother, but it was clear to her that her mother and her friends did not. But I really appreciated how her mother was not painted as the villain. She was a single mother who was trying to help her daughter, but all of her ideas weren’t working. They had to learn how to communicate with each other instead of going straight to fighting. This was a wonderful book that I would definitely recommend to a middle schooler and their parents! I love how the importance of communication was shown, and I think parents and children talking though this book would also be helpful. There is a prominent theme of a non binary individual.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

Thursday’s Child

About the Book:

Thursday’s Child by [Noel Streatfeild]

Title: Thursday’s Child
Author: 
Noel Streatfeild
Publisher: HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks
Release Date: 
April 2, 2020
Genre: 
Children’s Fiction

A thrilling, classic children’s adventure with a courageous heroine, from the beloved author of Ballet Shoes.

Margaret Thursday was named after the day she was found on the church steps as a baby. But she isn’t really an orphan – each year a bag of gold coins is left at the church for her keep. However, when Margaret is eleven years old, the money suddenly stops and her guardians have no choice but to send her away to an orphanage.

The orphanage is worse than they could have imagined. The children are poorly treated and barely fed, and fearless Margaret soon makes herself the enemy of the evil matron who runs it. Vowing to protect her new friends, Peter and Horatio, Margaret plans their daring escape . . . but she’ll have to outwit Matron at every turn.

Margaret’s action-packed adventure, set in turn-of-the-century England, takes her from orphanage to canal boat to the world of the theatre. Through it all, Margaret is propelled by her unwavering sense of self and determination.

Book Review:

Thursday’s Child is an adorable historical fiction book following orphan, Margaret Thursday by Noel Streatfeild. I knew Noel Streatfeild from her “Shoes” books. I had read Ballet Shoes, Dancing Shoes, Theater Shoes, and Theater Shoes. They were some of the books I really enjoyed reading in elementary school, so I was very excited to have the opportunity to read Thursday’s Child! Margaret Thursday is an orphan, who finds herself at an orphanage after the money supplied for her keep runs out. The orphanage turns out to be awful, with a harsh matron where the children are badly treated. Along with her friends, Margaret must find a way of escape!

Margaret was such a fun character! She was very confident and had such drama in her! She was also really kind and connected to people easily. And I loved her friends. They were all so sweet and seemed very realistic. Lavinia, Peter, Horatio and all the rest of the characters really made the story so interesting. I did not relate to Margaret as much, but I could empathize with her and relate to the other children in different ways.  

The story was very interesting. I liked watching the progression and it felt well-paced. Within a few chapters, I was already invested in the story! It is not a very action-packed book, but more an unfolding of the story of Margaret’s life. It has an older style of writing, with 3rd-person narrative and slightly different language than young readers may be accustomed to. It is also set in turn-of-the -century England, so there may be some unfamiliar references there as well. This story is the first in Margaret’s adventures, so while it offers some conclusions, not everything is made clear. 

Overall, this was a really fun and cute book that I would suggest to readers in mid-to late elementary school, who enjoy historical fiction! 

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, I was not required to write a positive review.

Meet Me Under the Kissing Bough

About the Book:

Title: Meet Me Under the Kissing Bough
Author: Josi S. Kilpack, Annika R. Walker, Sarah L. McConkie
Publisher:  Covenant Communications
Release Date: September 20, 2021
Genre: Christmas Romance Collection

We wish you a merry Christmas and a happily ever after! This special holiday historical romance anthology featuring three heartwarming novellas proves that no matter the obstacles,’tis the season for love.

Meet Me under the Kissing Bough by Josi S. Kilpack

Deborah Winfrey hasn’t had the heart to host a holiday party since her husband’s death. But this Christmas, it’s time to move forward. The festivities bring renewed life to her home, and the attentions of two very different men promise a chance at new love.

Healing Hearts for the Holidays by Anneka R. Walker

Julia Hunt is strictly forbidden from associating with the family in the nearby manor̬ including the handsome younger son, Esmond, who quickly steals her heart. With Christmas around the corner, an old bundle of hidden love letters may be the key to her own happily ever after.

A Christmas Correspondence by Sarah L.McConkie

In this novella inspired by the timeless taleA Christmas Carol, John Charleston finds himself on an unexpected journey in the company of the insufferable Lady Carolyn Morleigh. But the magic of the season has a way of softening even the hardest of hearts.

Book Review:

I have loved everything that I have read from Covenant Communications and these novelas were so fun! Christmas novels are always enjoyable and I was super excited to read this collection because it had some of my favorite authors. Meet Me Under the Kissing Bough is a collection of Christmast novellas by Josi S Kilpack, Anneka R Walker, and Sarah L McConkie. I have read books by Josi S Kilpack and Anneka R Walker before, but this is the first book that I have read by Sarah L McConkie. 

The first novella was Meet Me under the Kissing Bough by Josi S Kilpack. This was a lovely story about finding love after loss. Deborah Winfrey was learning to love again after the death of her husband. This was super cute and I loved reading about Deborah falling in love again. She loved her family and she wanted to be happy but she also wanted to make sure that her family was provided for. 

The Second novella was Healing Hearts for the Holidays by Anneka R Walker. This was also amazing! I adored this story about Julia and Esmond as they tried to heal their families’ broken relationships. They fell in love unintentionally but they were so cute together and fun to read about. Their conversations were a lot of fun and it was sweet to read about them coming together to help their siblings. 

The third novella was A Christmas Correspondence by Sarah L McConkie. This novella was a lot of fun because it was a reimagining of The Christmas Carol. It was a new way of looking at the Christmas Carol and I loved it! The characters were awesome and I found myself cheering for them. Especially the hero of the story, John Charleston. The romance was sweet and it was lovely to read about Caroline changing and growing. 

All of these novellas were lovely books. I enjoyed them all immensely and I don’t know if I could pick a favorite, they were all that good. Meet Me Under the Kissing Bough was a sweet book with lovely characters and interesting stories. I would totally recommend this collection of novellas. And I am excited to see what else these authors write!

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

Giveaway:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0ae98b8a283/

Love on the Range

About the Book:

Title: Love on the Range
Series: Brothers in Arms #3
Author: Mary Connealy
Publisher: Bethany House Fiction
Release Date: October 5, 2021
Genre: Historical Fiction

Falling for someone who doesn’t want to get married is soon be the least of his concerns.

While his brothers and their new wives search for who shot him, Wyatt Hunt is temporarily bedridden and completely miserable. Somehow Molly Garner’s limited skills have made her the most qualified in their circle to care for Wyatt. But by the time he’s healed, she’s fed up with him and the whole ungrateful family. For even worse than his grumpiness were the few unguarded moments when he pulled at her heartstrings, and she has been long determined to never repeat her mother’s mistakes.

When alternate plans of finding her own independent life fall through, Molly volunteers to work for the Pinkertons and help investigate nearby ranch owner Oliver Hawkins. She signs on to be his housekeeper, hoping to find clues to prove his nefarious, and possibly murderous, past. Wyatt refuses to let her risk it alone and offers to act as Hawkins’s new foreman.

But when another Pinkerton agent gets shot, they realize Hawkins isn’t the only danger. The Hunt brothers will have to band together to face all the troubles of life and love that suddenly surround them.

Book Review:

The final book in the Brothers in Arms series by Mary Connealy, Love on the Range concludes the overarching story as well as telling Molly and Wyatt’s story. I love how Ms. Connealy’s series have larger stories across them, but still have individual stories within each book. The last book has usually been my favorite in her series, because of the characterization that has been done throughout and being able to see all the characters that you loved from the previous books. This series follows the Hunt brothers as they discover secrets about their father and establish a life for themselves in Montana. Wyatt was born and raised in Montana, but the revelation of two brothers who his father left shakes his world. Though he has mostly adjusted to the new arrivals and the revealed secrets about his father, some mysteries are still unsolved. After being shot and subsequently bedridden, Wyatt is left being cared for by Molly Garner whose limited skills make her the most qualified. Though by the end she is fed up with him, there are moments of gentleness that laeve her scrambling to guard her heart. For Molly has promised herself never to make the mistakes of her mother, she will not get married. Molly is looking for her independence, but when her original plans fall through, she volunteers for the Pinkertons. She is working as a housekeeper to investigate Oliver Hawkins on his possibly murderous past.  Following her, Wyatt becomes Hawkins’s foreman. But as danger approaches, it is more at stake than they know and the family must band together. 

I was so excited for this book! I had the opportunity to read the first two books and was waiting for Wyatt and Molly’s book! Molly had so much to her that we did not know about yet. She seemed really nice and had a lot of secrets. It is nice to finally hear her story and learn about her. She and Wyatt were really cute to read about. They were able to support one another, especially with the dangerous situation they found themselves in. It was cool how different each of the ladies in this series were, yet they all respected each other. Molly had a lot of domestic skills that allowed her to take the job to investigate. Wyatt was also very sweet. He was trying so hard to take care of everything that was happening and to protect Molly. The ranch was his home and where he wanted to be.

This story was very exciting! There were so many things that were finally revealed and it was cool to see some cameos from other series that I will not spoil. I liked the ending too, it felt like things were cleared up and tied up. There is some action, some light violence and reference to murder. Overall, I would recommend this to older teens and up. It is a clean historical fiction Christian book and the conclusion to a series. 

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.