Friday, May 24, 2019

Evermore (Everless Series BK 2) by Sara Holland

by Sara Holland
HarperCollins Publishers
December 31, 2018
368 pages

Plot: Jules Ember was raised hearing legends of the ancient magic of the wicked Alchemist and the good Sorceress. But she has just learned the truth: She is the Alchemist, and Caro—a woman who single-handedly murdered the Queen and Jules’s first love, Roan, in cold blood—is the Sorceress.

The whole kingdom believes that Jules is responsible for the murders, and a hefty bounty has been placed on her head. And Caro is intent on destroying Jules, who stole her heart twelve lifetimes ago. Now Jules must piece together the stories of her past lives to save the person who has captured her heart in this one. (2019, Amazon).
Review:  In this exciting conclusion to the Everless series, Evermore continues the story of Jules Ember and her continued efforts to stop the Sorceress.  In this second book of the duology, Jules and Liam are working together to uncover the secrets to her past as the Alchemist.  Hot on their trail is Caro and she will stop at nothing to get Jules.  But, Liam is putting his life in danger the more time he spends away from Everless, and Jules is determined to keep him safe.  On the other hand, Liam doesn't want to let Jules out of his sight.  

With growing feelings for Liam and the constant threat of Caro, Jules feels she is running out of time.  She knows she is not strong enough to face Caro without the knowledge of her past lives and the secrets she has hidden deep within her own mind.  I liked how Holland gives the reader insight into Caro's feelings and shows the deep connection she had with Jules in their past lives.  It really helps you to understand that she is more heartbroken than angry.  But, Caro is no longer the same person she was so many lifetimes ago, and Jules is determined to stop her, no matter the cost.   A satisfying conclusion to a great series!

Rating: 4 Hearts!

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Suitors and Sabotage by Cindy Anstey

Suitors and Sabotage
by Cindy Anstey
Swoon Reads
April 18, 2018
331 pages

Plot: Shy aspiring artist Imogene Chively has just had a successful Season in London, complete with a suitor of her father's approval. Imogene is ambivalent about the young gentleman until he comes to visit her at the Chively estate with his younger brother in tow. When her interest is piqued, however, it is for the wrong brother.

Charming Ben Steeple has a secret: despite being an architectural apprentice, he has no drawing aptitude. When Imogene offers to teach him, Ben is soon smitten by the young lady he considers his brother's intended.
But hiding their true feelings becomes the least of their problems when, after a series of "accidents," it becomes apparent that someone means Ben harm. And as their affection for each other grows—despite their efforts to remain just friends—so does the danger. . . (2019, Goodreads).
Review:  Cindy Anstey is one of my favorite Young Adult historical romance writers and she has another winner in Suitors and Sabotage!  Anstey takes on a very complicated situation in any romance and adds a dangerous twist to it!  Imogene is supposed to fall in love with Ernest SteepleShe is expected to accept a marriage proposal from him too. But, love is not something you can plan or manipulate.  So, when Imogene realizes that she has feelings for Ernest's brother Ben, and that her best friend Emily does too, she doesn't know what to do.  But, Imogene is not the kind of person who would hurt anyone, and hiding her feelings is the hardest thing she's ever had to do. 

Meanwhile, there are several "incidents" that keep putting Ben in mortal danger and Imogene is sure that they are not accidental.  Between trying to sort out her feelings, keeping Emily, Ben, and Ernest from discovering her true desires, and trying to figure out who is out to hurt Ben, Imogene has a lot on her plate. With the risk of her father disowning her if she refuses a perfectly good marriage proposal from Ernest, Imogene must make the hardest decision of her life: a life alone or a marriage with a man she doesn't love.

You will definitely wonder how Imogene handles it all in the end and if she ever finds her happily ever after.  Can't wait to read the next Cindy Anstey novel!

Rating: 4 Hearts!

*A DRC was given for an honest review.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Lone Star Blog Tour: THE LITTLE TEASHOP ON MAIN by Jodi Thomas ***ENTER GIVEAWAY***

Jodi Thomas
Genre: Contemporary Literary Fiction / Coming of Age
Publisher: HQN Publication
Date: May 7, 2019
Number of Pages: 336 pages

Scroll down for the giveaway!

A rainy-day ritual—a tea party between three little girls—becomes the framework of not only their friendship, but their lives. Blonde, curly-haired Zoe is openhearted, kind and free-spirited, and dreams of becoming a famous actor in New York City. Shy Emily struggles with mental health but has the heart and soul of a writer. And Shannon—tall, athletic, strong—has a deep sense of loyalty that will serve her well when she heads off to military college. As Zoe, Emily, and Shannon grow into women—forging careers, following dreams, and finding love—they’ll learn that life doesn’t always unfold the way they want it to, but through it all, the one constant is each other and their regular tea parties. And when the unthinkable happens, the girls must come together to face the greatest test of all. A deeply moving novel about the family that raises us, the hearts that nurture us, and the great friendships that define our lives.  

PRAISE FOR THE LITTLE TEASHOP ON MAIN: "Heart-wrenching as well as heartwarming, the book reflects the experiences of these seven multifaceted and compelling characters as they journey through challenging years together." -- NY Journal of Books “A comforting treasure for regular Thomas readers who enjoy the easy flow of her writing, a little steamy romance to spice things up, and the development of vulnerable, realistic characters.” -- Booklist


by Jodi Thomas

Shannon kissed her dad one last time and jumped in the car. “Maybe you should watch over both my friends while I’m gone. I guess I’ve always thought that was my job.”
I will, and Zoe’s mom too. I swear that woman should have grown up in the sixties. She would have made a perfect flower child. If she didn’t own the bakery, I’d never speak to her, but those scones of hers are impossible to resist.”
Don’t pick on her, Dad.”
I’d never dream of it. Rule of survival. Never piss off a woman who can cook.” He laughed. “She’s invited me to drop by the bakery for breakfast any time I’m missing you. I’ll probably be fat as a bear by the time you come home for Christmas.”
She knew he was keeping it light, making it easy on her, so Shannon played along. “You two will probably run out of anything to talk about long before you get tired of her pastries.”
Oh, we only talk about you girls. That and the weather are our only safe topics. Anything else would probably be a land mine.”
Love you, Dad.”
I know, baby. Now, you’d better get on the road.”
He stood at attention beside the driveway until she turned the corner and he disappeared from her rearview mirror. Her mother might have vanished years ago with only occasional phone calls and flyby visits, but her dad was solid as a rock. Maybe that’s why she wanted to go into the air force. To make him proud. To follow in his footsteps.
Five minutes later, Shannon ran up the steps of the tiny apartment above the bakery on Main. Three years ago, Zoe’s mother had sold her house and moved. She’d said she was downsizing, but Shannon guessed it was to help pay for tuition at the art school Zoe had always dreamed of attending.
Today, they’d have tea on the balcony of the apartment.
Today, they’d say goodbye to each other for a whole semester.
We’re waiting!” Zoe yelled from the balcony.
Shannon felt a lump in her throat. She was the first to leave, the one they’d have to say goodbye to. Emily looked like she’d been crying. Zoe was, as always, dancing around, impatient for the next chapter of their lives to begin.
We’re going to make promises today,” Zoe said as Shannon took her seat. “Forever promises that none of us will ever break.”
Forever,” Emily said. “I’ll go first.” She lifted her teacup. “We’ll always be best friends.”
All three sipped their tea.
We’ll always be there for each other, no matter the miles between us,” Shannon added.
Zoe giggled. “And if one of us ever kills anyone, the other two have to promise to bury the body.”
They laughed as Zoe straightened and lifted her cup. “Seriously, nothing will ever break our bond. Not boyfriends, lovers or husbands.”
As their cups clinked, Shannon whispered, “I don’t plan to marry, not for a long time, so that’s no problem.”
Zoe shrugged. “I plan to have a hundred lovers. Famous actresses do, you know. What about you, Em?”
I doubt Mom will let me date before I’m forty, so where will I find a lover?”
Zoe lifted her cup one last time. “To Forever Tea. To us.”

With millions of books in print, Jodi Thomas is both a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over 45 novels and 14 short story collections. Her stories travel through the past and present days of Texas and draw readers from around the world.
In July 2006, Jodi was the 11th writer to be inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. With five RITA’s to her credit, along with National Readers’ Choice Awards and Booksellers’ Best Awards, Thomas has proven her skill as a master storyteller.
Honored in 2002 as a Distinguished Alumni by Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, Thomas enjoys interacting with students at West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas, where she currently serves as Writer in Residence.
When not working on a novel, or inspiring students to pursue writing careers, Thomas enjoys traveling with her husband, renovating an historic home, and “checking up” on their grown sons and four grandchildren.

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May 8-18, 2019
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