Thursday, June 30, 2016

may - june 2016

a note from me:
hello, dear reading friend!!!

thank you for checking out my five star picks for you!!! i can't believe today is the last day in june. doesn't it feel like the summer has just started?!? so i challenge you---go m.a.d. (make a difference) this summer!!! look for a service project you and your family can engage in together. read books out loud with your children. serve at church. do random acts of kindness with your family.

whatever you do, remember this: "always be joyful. never stop praying. be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus." 1 thessalonians 5:16-18

thank you for sharing this resource with your friends!!! i value your feedback, so feel free to email me at!!!

happy reading with blessings & love!!!

your reading mom,

jer. 29:11


all summer long: a san francisco romance by melody carlson is a story of love and second chances. this feel good story takes you on a journey with tia d'amico, the new chef of the pacific pearl. tia's aunt and uncle have inherited a luxury yacht in need of some tlc and they are hoping to turn it into an upscale floating restaurant. but an emergency prevents aunt julie from being onsite to supervise the renovations so it's up to tia and the yacht's captain to work together. The yacht's captain was tia's crush when she was 16 and their time together is what magical summer romances can be made of... except that Leo is engaged!!!

almost like being in love by beth k. vogt is a destination wedding novel that is a delightful, romantic and sweet read! i loved this one!!! caron hollister is a top ranking realtor but her rising career in her father's company comes to a screeching halt when he makes another well experienced realtor a partner in his business. her long-time boy friend alex is shocked by her sudden resignation. and when she suddenly decides to fly to colorado to be with her best friend margo, an- upcoming-bride-to-be, alex is thrown for a loop by caron's unpredictable behavior! when caron unexpectedly wins a destination wedding and honeymoon package at a bridal fair, she has to figure out a way to tell alex! this is a great book for book clubs because there's a "reading group guide," a "going deeper with the story guide," and a mini interview with vogt at the back of the book.

anchor in the storm by sarah sundin is the second book in her waves of freedom series. this wwII mystery has romance, danger, suspense and elements of faith which remind us to put our hope in the Lord. i love lillian avery! although she has to work around her prothesis, she doesn't allow it to define her. she's plucky, creative and determined. when her brother brings home his best friend, society boy ensign archer vandenberg home, they get off on the wrong foot (pun intended!). but eventually, archer sees past her prothesis and lillian is able to see past what she perceives as a pampered society boy and they begin a friendship. and the friendship turns to love as they begin to solve a mystery together that may endanger lillian's life if she continues to follow her leads...

broken ground by karen halvorsen schreck is a moving story about a young widow, ruth warren, who starts her life over when she gets the opportunity to attend college in california in the 1930's.  ruth lives day to day under a cloud of grief over the loss of her childhood sweetheart husband, but her observation of the mexican immigrant is what slowly changes her outlook on life. this touching story will stir your heart as you follow ruth through hard times and an unexpected event that forces her to leave school. you will be cheering ruth on as the circumstances threaten to break her spirit, but she ends up finding her purpose and calling in the most unlikely place.

every bride has her day by janice thompson is book 3 in the brides with style series. when katie fisher gets engaged to the man of her dreams, everyone wants a say in what her perfect day should be like. but katie can't wait to show all her city friends how perfect a wedding in her small home town of fairfield can be! katie loves her home town and she loves that the people of fairfield care about each other and look out for one another like one big family.  but when a misunderstanding gets out of hand, the entire town takes sides and suddenly, katie fears that her perfect day will be a disaster! janice delivers another hilarious story of love, laughter, romance and faith!

fading starlight by kathryn cushman is a tale of unexpected friendship between a girl who loves vintage handiwork and a reclusive former hollywood star. when lauren summer's dream internship turns into a nightmare on the red carpet, she is forced to take an unpaid job that comes with free lodging in a neighborhood with very strict rules and regulations. kendall joiner may be the key to getting lauren back in the world of fashion and design but the cost may be more than lauren is willing to pay. kendall wants a story that will uncover an old murder mystery involving the reclusive former hollywood star living in the nearby mansion of lauren's cottage. will lauren uncover the secrets of an older woman who doesn't trust the world? you can find out :o)

from scratch by c.e. hilbert takes you into the delectable aromas coming from only the basics bakery starring maggie mckitrick! the beautiful petite baker loves everyone in her new town except for her landlord, sean taylor, the town's police chief who refuses to address her complaints! so she does the next best thing to get his attention and eventually, a truce is formed. all is going well until a letter arrives for maggie plunging her heart in fear again. every little noise and thing out of place begins to make maggie fearful again. maggie is doing everything she can to keep her past behind her but sean taylor is determined to gain her trust and learn how to help the jittery baker who has intrigued his heart. her nightmare has returned and sean taylor will have to do everything in his power to gain maggie's trust and help her.

her one and only by becky wade is set in texas and is all about football, family and an assignment that turns dru porter's world upside down! this is book 4 of the porter family novels. born and bred cowboys' football fan, dru porter is about to start her new assignment: protecting gray fowler, star nfl tight end of the mustangs, the cowboys' crosstown rivals! when the identity of the stalker is finally uncovered before the big charity event, there's a big sigh of relief... except for one little detail... i love all the characters in this story---they're believable, fiercely protective of one another and very likable! i finally learned the difference between the role of the tight end and the quarterback---yay for me!

life just got real is a live original fiction by sadie robertson with cindy coloma. sixteen-year-old aj smith's world has turned upside down ever since her father passed away. now her mom has moved their family to nashville and she has to go to a new private school courtesy of an unknown benefactor. there are too many changes to deal with and a school full of rich girls who are nothing like aj's former life and friends. when a reality show opportunity comes to make her one of the major cast members along with the school's most popular girl, aj has to decide if she's in or out. i love that aj turns to God again and that she's reminded that faith matters even when she wants to run away from her problems.

like a river from its course by kelli stuart is a haunting story of war, forgiveness and hope as portrayed by various characters (based on true stories gathered from "fifteen years of research and interviews with ukranian world war II survivors") and their stories... maria ivanovna is only 14-year-old when she is forced away from her family to work at a german labor camp. ivan kyrilovich is mistaken for a jew and survives being shot and left to die. luda is 16-year-old when she is horrifically raped and abandoned by her father. frederick hermann spends his whole life trying to earn the approval of his father and... falls short. these stories will move you and touch your heart! my words of advice? don't skip the epilogue!!!

murder comes by mail by a. h. gabhart is an on-the-edge-your-seat mystery that is the second book in the series, hidden springs mysteries. the charming small town of hidden springs is beginning to lose its charm as mysterious photos of propped victims begin to appear. it's a race against time for deputy sheriff michael keane as he tries to protect the people he loves. i confess i was scared all the way to the end but i'm loving this series and hope to share more reviews with you from a. h. gabhart!

precious in his sight by karen pashley is a stirring story set in south carolina where successful architect clay brennan and his lovely wife, sugar live. they have a beautiful marriage, two successful children, a lovely home and are active in their church. but clay is hiding a secret which will destroy everything he holds dear to his heart. this is a story about trusting God, forgiveness and choosing to follow God even when it's humanly impossible to do so. pashley does a fantastic job shaping her characters into real humans with deep emotions. their stories will draw you in so keep those kleenexes close by because you're going to need them.

quieting, the by suzanne woods fisher is book two in the series, the bishop's family. this engaging story takes you back to stoney ridge where there's a huge issue in the church that is causing division. when david stoltzfus gets a surprise visit from his overbearing mom and two nieces to "help" solve his problems, his family's world is turned upside down! this story is a reminder that sometimes, the best intentions can produce the opposite effect and sin is sin no matter how you may want to justify it. book clubs will love the discussion questions and readers will get attached to the families of stoney ridge!

sea rose lane by irene hannon is a hope harbor novel that takes readers back to a charming fictional town on the lovely oregon coast. eric nash was on the partner track working over 60 hours a week at his law firm until he was given the boot. now he's returned home to find that his childhood home is being turned into a bed and breakfast by his father. right from the get go, eric and the architect and construction foreman, bj stevens clash. his judgmental attitude toward her crew makes bj's blood boil but everyone she respects seems to hold him in high regard. bj doesn't know what to think when she begins to see the non irritating side of eric! i love eric's special moments with charley the artist who runs a food truck with the best tacos on earth. they are really heartwarming! i want a charley in my life, too!!!

sins of the past is a romantic suspense novella collection by dee henderson, dani pettrey and lynette eason. dee henderson's "missing" is a disturbing story about a sheriff's missing mother. dani pettrey's "shadowed" takes you back to alaska where the body of a swimming competitor is found. lynette eason's "blackout" is a story about a woman and her unreliable memory of one night when a robbery goes wrong.  the loot has never been found but someone believes she knows where it is hidden. these three suspense novellas are easy-to-read and fast-paced enough to keep you engaged! what a 3 for 1 bargain!

someone like you by victoria bylin is a contemporary fiction novel (one of my very favorite genres!) set in southern california (oh how i miss you). zeke monroe is determined to bring caliente  springs back to life with improvements and more opportunities to draw in potential clients, but time and the lack of funding are not on his side. when an opportunity to impress dare to dream events planner, zeke is reunited with a former girlfriend... julia dare.  julia left because of zeke's faith and now, her life has changed because of faith and a secret. zeke is carrying around a secret, too and julia may discover it. i loved this sweet story---you'll find the encounters with ladybug absolutely hilarious!!! this is a perfect take-along-to-the-beach book!

traces of guilt is an evie blackwell cold case novel by dee henderson. as usual, dee never disappoints in delivering a gripping action packed story full of suspense, drama and faith (much better than watching law & order or csi!!!) with her trademark inspirational romantic suspense. there's a few troubling missing-persons cases that deserve a second look - a missing family of three, a missing little six-year-old girl, a relocated young lady and an unexplainable hunting accident that has detective evie blackwell, paul and ann falcon,  local sheriff gabriel thane and his family involved. it's several cold cases and evie is determined to review the old evidence and hopefully, discover something new. i do love seeing justice come to light and once i started reading this one, i couldn't put it down and you won't either!

truth be told by carol cox is set in 1893 where a female journalist is determined to track down the truth in a story her father had started on. i love amelia warner's courageous spirit and spunk as she takes over her father's newspaper and takes on great western's business! she just has to figure out who she can trust and who is trying to distract her from the truth.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the wonderful review of Anchor in the Storm, Susan! I'm so glad you enjoyed Arch & Lillian's story!


Please feel free to share anything encouraging :o)