Review: A Stranger at Fellsworth by Sarah E. Ladd

The third installment of Sarah E. Ladd’s Treasures of Surrey series was a hit with me. My biggest complaint with the previous book in this series was that the hero and heroine were not together enough.

This was not an issue in A Stranger at Fellsworth. In fact, Annabelle Thorley and Owen Locke meet early in the book, and from that point forward, circumstances throw them together repeatedly.

While Owen is a gamekeeper, well below the social circles Annabelle is used to, his character stands above the majority of those in the ton. His love for his daughter and the respect of the land he works build his character as much as his desire to help Annabelle escape.

In direct contrast, Annabelle is navigating a new life, a new world. Her determination to make it work despite the obstacles she has to overcome make her loveable in her own right despite her naivety.

Add to that the search for poachers, a murder, questionable characters, and Annabelle’s scheming brother, and this book becomes one of Ladd’s best stories yet. Continue reading

Her Baby’s Protector: Saved by the SEAL by Susan Sleeman

Her Baby’s Protector: Saved by the Lawman/Saved by the Seal by Margaret Daley and Susan Sleeman

 

About the book

Saved by the Lawman by Margaret Daley

As an unknown assailant attempts to kidnap family-court judge Kate Forster’s infant son, police officer Chase Walker thwarts the attack—and vows to keep the pair safe. But who will protect the ex-marine’s heart when the widowed mother and her little boy make him long for a permanent spot in their family?

Saved by the SEAL by Susan Sleeman

The tragedy that killed Bree Hatfield’s best friends—and left her with custody of their young daughter—has been ruled an accident. But Bree knows it was murder. Scared and alone, she turns to her ex-boyfriend, navy SEAL Clint Reed, who’ll risk everything to protect baby Ella and the woman he never stopped loving.

 

 

My thoughts

Know what I love better than a good story? TWO good stories, and Her Baby’s Protector delivers. This book contains two novellas by two romantic suspense authors who kept be involved and turning the pages. As if an adorable baby in each story wasn’t enough to keep my interest, there’s also the rugged men whose hearts are melted by the children as they’re falling for the mothers.

 

My favorite of the two stories was Saved by the SEAL by Susan Sleeman. From the harrowing first line, I was drawn into this story and the lineup of suspects kept me guessing who was behind the crimes until the end of the book. While Bree and Clint investigate the murder of Bree’s friends, they must navigate the emotional mines of their past and their current feelings for each other. With a story that defines suspense until the very last chapter, Sleeman delivers another winner.

 

 

Disclosure statement:

I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

When We Last Spoke by Marci Henna

When We Last Spoke by Marci Henna

 

 

About the book

“Humor, heartbreak, and triumph are served with whipped cream and lots of local nuts in this heartwarming tale of family, friendship, and forgiveness in Fireside, Texas.

Meet Juliet Cranbourne, local radio personality and owner of a whimsical kitchen gadget store, and her sister Evangeline, a fruit tree geneticist who works for Oregon State University.

When a rift due to their orphaned past affects their sisterhood, Juliet convinces Evangeline to come home for Christmas and choose headstones to honor grandparents Walt (a tenderhearted, good-looking rancher) and Ruby (a blue-ribbon fiddler, fabulous cook, and expert in the loving he).

As they cruise through Fireside in Ruby’s Thunderbird, Juliet hopes that healing memories will somehow smooth rough roads ahead.

Does the tremendous love that marked Walt and Ruby’s lives still have the power to renew their sisterhood and help them find their place in the world?”

 

 

My thoughts

The description is a little misleading (and I kept mixing up the title. I wanted to call it “When Last We Spoke”). Everything listed in the book description happens but the bulk of the book is a throwback to when Juliet and Evangeline are just girls, coming to terms with being left by their mother and father.

I expected a few more quirky town characters—there are really only two who get a good amount of mention, but they are both memorable in their own way. There was not a good development of the rift between the sisters. You know there is one because the adult Juliet talks about it.

But what the heart of this book is about—family—is handled with love and finesse. Sometimes our family is not the one we are born into, it is made of those people who step in and love us no matter what. As Juliet and Evangeline fight, make bad choices or disrespect their elders, they are disciplined. But Walt and Ruby love them through everything.

I did struggle a little getting into this book but about a third of the way through, my interested in these two girls’ lives picked up. Even when the book switches back to present-day and adult Juliet and Evangeline, I wanted them to find happiness during a difficult time.

 

This story is currently in development for a film. I can definitely see some of those scenes on the big screen. You can check out the trailer

 

 

 

About the author

 

Marci Henna was born in Austin, Texas and lived as a child in Kenya, East Africa with the Wakamba tribe where her parents managed a medical research station. She later moved to the Hill Country ranch which has been in the family since the 1800’s and currently lives in Austin.

 

 

Connect with her

Facebook

Twitter

GoodReads

FiresideTexas.com

 

 

Disclosure statement:
I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Propeller/FlyBy. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

An Uncommon Courtship by Kristi Ann Hunter

An Uncommon Courtship by Kristi Ann Hunter

 

About the Book

Life for Lady Adelaide Bell was easier if she hid in her older sister’s shadow–which worked until her sister got married. Even with the pressure of her socially ambitious mother, the last thing she expected was a marriage of convenience to save her previously spotless reputation.

Lord Trent Hawthorne couldn’t be happier that he is not the duke in the family. He’s free to manage his small estate and take his time discovering the life he wants to lead, which includes grand plans of wooing and falling in love with the woman of his choice. When he finds himself honor bound to marry a woman he doesn’t know, his dream of a marriage like his parents’ seems lost forever.

Already starting their marriage on shaky ground, can Adelaide and Trent’s relationship survive the pressures of London society?

 

 

 

My thoughts:

How have I not read anything by this author before? I loved, loved, loved this book. In fact, I enjoyed An Uncommon Courtship so much, I immediately ordered the first two books in the series once I’d reached the end.

Adelaide, with her penchant for clumsiness, is likable from the get-go despite her annoying mother, and I couldn’t help but feel for her situation. It took me a little longer to warm up to Trent Hawthorne (and if I’d read the previous books in this series, I may have had a different opinion of him at the beginning of the book).

The tension between two strangers who now found themselves married was palpable, neither one knowing how to interact with the other, afraid of doing something wrong. Their friends and family added to the stress of the marriage (both those who supported them and those who were a sore spot).

And I have to say it was nice to read a book set in the Regency period that focused on the day-to-day interaction instead of someone trying to steal, overthrow, or besmirch another member of the ton (there was the smallest hint of that last one, but it wasn’t the main plot of the book).

 

 

 

Disclosure statement:
I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Unfolding by Jonathan Friesen

I’ve read a couple books by Jonathan Friesen in the past, but Unfolding (available everywhere from Blink and Zondervan January 31, 2017) just might be his best yet.

In Gullary, Oklahoma, Jonah wishes he were whole. His life is filled with pain from a debilitating physical condition and seizures steal moments from his life. What Jonah wants more than anything is his best friend and neighbor, Stormi. But he doesn’t believe he’s worthy of her. Besides, Stormi has her own secrets and a seeming ability to sense the future.

Yet when Stormi needs him, Jonah’s there. As the two are swept into an adventure that reveals secrets about their small town and reveals things about Stormi’s past, their relationship begins to change. Stormi begins to change, to disappear from herself.

Friesen’s story is both captivating and engaging. While slow in a few parts, the mystery and adventure quickly picked up and kept me engaged. Jonah’s condition is written in a beautiful way, giving readers a glimpse into Jonah’s pain and frustration at his limitations. A wonderfully written story for adults and teens alike that will sweep you away for a few hours.

Disclosure statement: Thanks to BookLook Bloggers, I received a copy of Unfolding and the opportunity to honestly review it. I was not required to write a positive review, and all the opinions I have expressed are my own. (I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”)