Lowcountry Romance / Book 3

I hope everyone has enjoyed learning a little bit more about the Lowcountry Romance series. I also hope you are encouraged to read these books for yourself. I know I really enjoyed this series.

I recently came across a new author, Karen Witemeyer, whose books I am really enjoying.This week's book of the week is written by her. As you can see it's called the Short-Straw Bride. It's one of my new favorites too. After I finish reading the other books in that series I will review them. I'm looking forward to that.

Have a splendid week and enjoy the last few days of April!

Book Title: Dining with Joy
Series: Lowcountry Romance (Book #3)
Author: Rachel Hauck

Description: Joy Ballard has a secret: she’s a cooking show host who can’t really cook.

When her South Carolina-based cooking show, Dining With Joy, is picked up by a major network, Joy Ballard’s world heats up like a lowcountry boil.

Joy needs help. Then she meets chef Luke Davis who moved to Beaufort after losing his Manhattan restaurant. A cook at the Frogmore Cafe, he’s paying debts and longing to regain his reputation in the elite foodie world.

Luke and Joy mix like oil and water…until Joy is exposed on national television. With her career and his reputation both under fire, they’ll have to work together to fix the mess. Is it possible that they can learn to feast on God’s love and dine with joy?

My Review: Dining with Joy is probably my favorite book in this series. I really enjoyed the storyline. Joy's personality was funny, sweet, and caring. I thought it was amusing that she was the host of a cooking show but couldn't cook at all. I think what I liked most about this book was that it seemed funnier and livelier than the others in the series.

My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Would I recommend this book? Yes, I would. Although mostly for older teens and ages above.

New Book: Beautiful in God's Eyes

Beautiful in God's Eyes
"Looking good from the inside out."
Author: Elizabeth George
Description: Have you ever struggled with your body image or in a moment of depression asked, “Why am I ugly?” Bestselling author Elizabeth George wants you to experience the confidence of knowing that you are beautiful in God’s eyes.

Many young women struggle with eating disorders or distorted body images because they believe the world’s version of ultimate beauty, perfection, or femininity. They are deciding, based on those lies, that they are too ugly, too fat, too different—too unloveable. It’s time to give your body image a makeover by using God’s truth as your mirror. Surround yourself with inspiring Bible verses and Elizabeth’s encouraging guidance to discover purpose and confidence you’ve only dreamed of having. If you want to see something really beautiful—take a look at the incredible young woman God made you to be.

My thoughts on this book: Beautiful in God's Eyes is a great book to use as a daily devotional and Bible study book. Each chapter is based on a verse in Proverbs 31:10-31. As you go through the lessons you learn more about the character traits of the P31 woman and are encouraged to be like the "victorious woman". I am really enjoyed this book and would encourage others to read.

Genres: Teen & Young Adult, Religion & Spirituality

Lowcountry Romance / Book 2

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter Sunday; or Resurrection Sunday as my family calls it. Christmas is probably one of the biggest holidays of the year but in my opinion Easter should be more significant. Christ being born a human is an amazing thing but the Lord's act of love on Easter is what saves us and makes us part of God's family. This song, Glorious Day by Casting Crowns, is one of my favorites about the Lord's crucifixion and resurrection.

Today I'm reviewing the second book in the Lowcountry Romance series, Love Starts with Elle. (I really like that play on words) If you've read the first book in this series you are already slightly familiar with the character Elle. She was one of Caroline's best friends in Sweet Caroline.

Enjoy the new week,

Book Title:  Love Starts With Elle
Series: Lowcountry Romance (Book #2)
Author: Rachel Hauck

Description: Elle's living the dream—but is it her dream or his?

Elle loves life in Beaufort, South Carolina—lazy summer days on the sand bar, coastal bonfires, and dinners with friends sharing a lifetime of memories. And she's found her niche as the owner of a successful art gallery too. Life is good.

Then the dynamic pastor of her small town church sweeps her off her feet. She's never known a man like Jeremiah—one who breathes in confidence and exhales all doubt. When he proposes in the setting sunlight, Elle hands him her heart on a silver platter.

But Jeremiah's just accepted a large pastorate in a different state. If she's serious about their relationship, Elle will take "the call," too, leaving behind the people and place she loves so dearly. Elle's friendship with her new tenant, widower Heath McCord, and his young daughter make things even more complicated.

Is love transferrable across the miles? And can you take it with you when you go?

My Review: One of the things I really liked about this book was how Rachel Hauck brought more Christianity into this story than some of her others. Elle is really struggling with making decisions for her future and through the influence of a Christian lady begins to willingly let God have control of her life. And like the Bible verse, Romans 8:28*, Elle realizes how God really does work all things out for good.

My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Would I recommend this book? Yes, I would. Although mostly for older teens and ages above.

*Romans 8:28 KJV "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

Lowcountry Romance / Book 1

Hello everyone! As I sit here writing this post I'm also watching the snow that's been falling, non-stop, all day. So much for almost-summer weather. Last week-end was beautiful here in northwestern Pennsylvania. Degrees in the seventies with a small breeze and warm sun, my family spent all Saturday and most Sunday outside. Yesterday was in the sixties but last night it dropped thirty degrees and so today we're having another taste of winter. Basically in the course of ten hours this happened:

As I mentioned on last week's post I was debating between reviewing the series Lowcountry Romance or the Homeward Trilogy. By the title of today's post I guess you can see which series won. There are three books in the Lowcountry Romance series, Sweet Caroline, Love Starts with Elle, and Dining with Joy. The author, Rachel Hauck, is one of my favorite Christian writers. I've read quite a few of the series she's written. I am hoping to read her NashVegas series but unfortunately my library does not have a copy. I will have to find another way to read them.

Anyway, I hope everyone has a great day; even if your weather is rainy, snowy, or sunny.

Book Title: Sweet Caroline
Series: Lowcountry Romance   (Book #1)
Author: Rachel Hauck

Description: Caroline serves others with little time to enjoy the sweeter parts of life. Until her old boyfriend returns to town--and she's given a second chance at first love.

Life hasn't always been so sweet for Caroline Sweeny. She's sacrifice her desires for others--unlike her mother who abandoned their family years ago. But when a friend challenges her to accept an exciting job adventure in Spain, Caroline says "yes" to a new destiny.

But before she can pack her bags, Caroline suddenly finds herself the new owner of the run-down Frogmore Café--and forced to choose between her friends and her future.

Then her first love, Mitch O'Neal, returns home and encourages her to seek God's desires for her future. With his help, she may just discover the true sweet life.

My Review: Sweet Caroline was a well-written book with a great storyline. Although it wasn't as exciting as other books I've read, you will still enjoy reading this novel. I liked the character of Mitch O'Neal and, although I was a little surprised by her choice in the end, I liked Caroline Sweeny too. A great read book for anyone looking for a book with a Christian-based romance.

My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Would I recommend this book? Yes, I would. Although mostly for older teens and ages above.

River of Time / Book 4: Bourne & Tributary

Morning everyone. This will be the last post on the River of Time series, at least for now. If anyone has any requests for books or series that they would liked featured sometime in the future please let me know in the comments. Haven't officially decided but I think the next series will be A Lowcountry Romance by Rachel Hauck or quite possibly the Homeward Trilogy by Lisa T. Bergren.

Enjoy your day,

Bourne & TributaryBook Title: Bourne & Tributary
Series: River of Time (Book #4)
Author: Lisa Tawn Bergren

Description: BOURNE, a novella, picks up right where TORRENT left off...Find out what has happened to men returning from the battle, gravely wounded, to the Betarrinis, fighting for the men they love, and just who is hunting them next...

TRIBUTARY, a novella, picks up a year after BOURNE... Lia struggles to overcome the fear that constant battle has heaped upon her; Gabi and Marcello face an unexpected crisis; and Lord Greco just may be ready to leave the grief and loss of his past behind him, so that he might grab hold of the future...

My Review: Bourne & Tributary was a nice addition to the River of Time series. Bourne was my favorite of the two novellas in the book. The character, Alessandra in the Tributary didn't appeal to me as much as the others, I'm not sure why. But I was glad that Lord Greco's story was continued and he found someone who made him complete again. Overall, I really enjoyed Bourne & Tributary but it wasn't my favorite in the series.

My Rating:⭐⭐⭐⭐

Would I recommend this book? Yes I would. Especially for teens, mostly ages 15 and up.

17372786NOTE: At first these two novellas were going to complete the River of Time series but Lisa T. Bergren is coming out with one final book. Deluge, the fifth and last book in the series, is to be published sometime this year (2014). If you're like me I'm sure you can't wait to read it.

New Releases: Sincerely Yours

I recently read the book, Sincerely Yours through NetGalley. (If you're not familiar with this association I would suggest looking into it. I have found it to be a great website.) I decided I would review the book and put some comments about the book on this blog.

Book Title: Sincerely Yours
Published Date: April 1, 2014

A little bit about the book: The book, Sincerely Yours is a collection of novellas written by four authors, Jane Kirkpatrick, Amanda Cabot, Laurie Alice Eakes and Ann Shorey. Jane Kirkpatrick writing, Saving Grace; Amanda Cabot, One Little Word; Laurie Alice Eakes, A Moonlight Promise; and Ann Shorey the author of Lessons in Love. Each story in Sincerely Yours tells about how one letter can change a person's life for the better.

My Review: I really enjoyed reading Sincerely Yours. I liked the novellas, One Little Word, A Moonlight Promise, and Lessons in Love. They were well-written and exciting. I especially liked One Little Word and A Moonlight Promise. I did not care for the last novella in the book though, Saving Grace. Things that happened in it were horrific and did not leave me with peaceful thoughts. The book was based on a true story but just because things have happened in the past does not mean we should fill our minds with them. I would recommend the book Sincerely Yours but I would definitely suggest to skip over the fourth novella, Saving Grace.

My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
(I would have given Sincerely Yours four stars but unfortunately the fourth novella, Saving Grace made the book less enjoyable.)

River of Time Series / Book 3: Torrent

Finally, weather that is starting to feel like spring! Don't get me wrong I love winter, but not it being so prolonged and with only enough snow to cover the ground. Although I do have to admit, spring isn't exactly my favorite either. I guess I'm more a summer girl. I used to hate the outdoors because of all the mosquitoes, deer flies, and black gnats all ready to eat me 
(example picture)
for dinner (see example picture on right :P), but over the last two years I've gotten over that. Now summer is my absolute favorite season. Thinking about it makes me all the more anxious for the bright sun, the beautiful sounds of birds and the wind rustling through the trees.  And maybe I'm weird but mowing the lawns are a highlight too.(Seriously, one of things I love most about summer) :).

Well, enough rambling and onto the next book in the River of Time series, Torrent.

Book Title: Torrent
Series: River of Time (Book #3)
Author: Lisa Tawn Bergren

Description: When Gabi and Lia finally learn to surf the river of time, they realize they must make hard choices about life and love in Torrent, the third book in the River of Time series.

Gabi and Lia Betarrini return from medieval Italy to try and save their father from his tragic death in modern times.

But love calls across the centuries, and the girls are determined to return forever—even though they know the Black Plague is advancing across Europe, claiming the lives of one-third of the population. In the next installment of the River of Time series, every decision is about life … and death.
My thoughts on the book: At first this book was meant to be the third and final book in the River of Time series. I am so glad Lisa Bergren changed her mind. I'm sure the ending would have been different had she chosen that but as great as the book was, the story of the Betarrinis and Forellis needed continued. I liked how the author added the twist in the book where Gabriella was being forced to marry someone she did not love. I kind of felt bad for Lord Greco in the end. I loved this book in the series, probably just as much as Cascade. The plots added excitement, danger, and adventure and I really felt like I was with the characters. Hope any who have read this book enjoyed it as much as I did.

My Rating:⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Would I recommend this book? Yes I would. Especially for teens, mostly ages 15 and up.