Paper Roses

Paper Roses by Amanda CabotPaper Roses by Amanda Cabot begins with Sarah Dobbs journeying from Philadelphia to San Antonio with her little sister Thea to marry Austin Canfield, the man who has wooed her with his prosaic letters. She not only accepted his offer of marriage because of the beautiful words he wrote her but because she needed to escape the gossip and recrimination she has faced back East.

When Austin’s brother, Clay is the one to greet her, Sarah knows that something is not right. And it isn’t because Austin is dead. Sarah knows she can’t go back East. Not after what happened. She has to find a way to survive in this new town and provide a home for her sister.

Clay doesn’t know what to do with Sarah. He never wanted her or her sister to come in the first place. Clay is stuck working his father’s ranch, something he can’t wait to leave behind. But he can’t do that until he has gotten revenge for his brother’s murder.

This was a book about the importance of forgiveness. Both Sarah and Clay carry around a deep hurt and have turned that into anger at those who have caused them this pain. In doing so, they are not only hurting themselves but preventing anything from happening between them.

Both Sarah and Clay were very strong people with real problems. They had to deal with a lot and did it well. Their struggles were real and their approach was incredibly human. It took time and support to help them heal their wounds. This book had mystery and love and adventure. The supporting characters were well developed and added greatly to the story. I loved the faith woven throughout this book. It had the perfect presence without being too overwhelming. This was a beautiful story and one I heartily recommend.

I’ve Got Your Number

I've Got Your Number by Sophie KinsellaI’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella was such a lovely read! The moment I finished reading this book, I sent a text to my sister telling her she has to read it! You know a book is good if this happens. I’ve read a lot by Sophie Kinsella, not all of which I have equally liked. I loved this book, and actually, it’s my favorite of hers so far!

The book begins with Poppy frantically searching a hotel conference room which she has just lost during an impromptu fire drill. Her phone gets stolen, and she’s about to have a total meltdown. But then she sees a phone tossed into a trash bin, and she just can’t resist picking it up and claiming it as her own. This is when the hilarious stuff really begins.

I want to tell you all the funny parts that I absolutely loved, but I don’t want to ruin them for you so I won’t. I thought Poppy was incredibly funny and just a loveable character. She was ridiculous in a realistic way. She is a very engaging character. I had to force myself to put this book down so I could get at least a few hours of sleep. Don’t worry though because the next chance I got, I inhaled the rest of this book.

This was a real page-turner. I absolutely loved it! It had some romance, some drama, and lots of comedy! Fans of Sophie Kinsella will love it!

Catching Fire

Catching Fire by Suzanne CollinsCatching Fire is the second novel in The Hunger Games trilogy written by Suzanne Collins. This one takes up pretty much where the first one left off. Katniss and Peeta have returned to District 12 where they have settled into their houses in the Victor’s Village. They are about to embark on their Victory Tour of the other districts when Katniss receives a startling visit from President Snow who tells her that even though she has won The Hunger Games she will not be able to live a peaceful life. At least not while the threat of rebellion is upon them. Katniss finds herself having to fall into the role she thought she had left behind to keep all the people she loves safe.

This one was just as much a page turner as the last one was. I loved getting to see more of Katniss outside of the arena. This book is more intense than the first one, in my opinion. There is so much going on and much much more at stake. All the themes in the first book were amplified and seen in a different light. I got to see more of the mindset of the Capitol and a glimpse into the other districts. So many things happened throughout this book, it’s really hard to believe this was just one book and not two or three.

I had so many questions while reading this that I couldn’t possibly put it down until I had gotten to a whopper of a cliffhanger! That’s right, this ends with one heck of a cliffhanger. This is why you must have the sequel sitting beside you once you get close to finishing this one because you’ll want to start it right away. I don’t really want to say more because I would give something away, and I wouldn’t deny you the pleasure of reading it for yourself. So please go out and get this series (it’s best to have all three on hand before starting) and read them!

Until next time, happy reading!

The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsI imagine many of you have heard of this book and the series, and many more will discover it as the movie premiere draws closer. I heard about these books a while ago, but never really looked twice at them. I had no idea what they were about. It was not until I saw the link to the movie trailer posted in my friend’s status that my interest was really piqued. This happens to me often it seems. I’ve heard of a book, but only really become interested in it after I see it’s going to be a movie. I have this thing where I like to read books before I see a movie whenever possible. I almost always do so this was not much different. I watched the trailer and was immediately intrigued. I couldn’t wait to read the book and its sequels.
The Hunger Games is the first book in the series and introduces us to Katniss Everdeen, a sixteen year old girl, who is living in District 12 in Panem which is located in what was once called North America. Every year two tributes, one boy and one girl, are chosen from each district to participate in The Hunger Games, an event designed by the Capitol to punish the districts for rebelling almost seventy-five years ago. The rules of the game are simple: kill or be killed. When her younger sister is chosen as the female tribute, Katniss does not hesitate to volunteer to take her place. Katniss is whisked away from the only home she knows to compete against twenty-three other children ranging in age from twelve to eighteen.
To say I devoured this book is a bit of an understatement. The only reason I put it down was because I was so exhausted I couldn’t keep my eyes open a minute longer. This is a hazard to starting this book late at night after a busy Christmas Eve. There is so much more to this book than a teenage girl forced to fight for her life. There are so many themes and statements about the dangers of power and class systems that give this book such depth. Katniss is a strong leading character, and it is easy to walk around in her shoes and see the world from her point of view. This book is a real page turner and one I would recommend reading when you have a good chunk of time to read it all the way through because, trust me, you’re not going to want to put it down once you start. I know I didn’t.

I thought about reviewing all three books in this one post but realized that I could be giving away a lot of spoilers to those who intended to read the series. Therefore, look for upcoming posts on Catching Fire, and Mockingjay in the days to come.

Until next time, happy reading!

The Moonflower Vine

The Moonflower Vine by Jetta CarletonThe Moonflower Vine by Jetta Carleton is the story of a family living and growing in rural Missouri. Matthew and Callie have four daughters, each one distinct, following a path truly her own. Matthew is a schoolteacher, more than willing to escape into his work and books even if it means his family comes second. Callie is loving, hardworking and wants nothing but the best for her family. Jessica is the tomboy of the family. Leonie is the good girl, wanting nothing more than to please her parents and do what’s right. Mathy is the wild child, not content unless she’s off exploring the world. Mary Jo is the baby of the family, growing up in a time so different from the rest of her sisters.

This is a timeless novel where each character carries a secret burden. Each comes to terms with his or her faults and learns to live with them and sometimes in spite of them.

This was the most realistic novel I have ever read in my life. The characters jumped off the page and became part of this world. As the novel went on Jetta Carleton revealed more and more about her characters from multiple points of view so that each layer was peeled away. This novel was rich with life and so incredibly captivating. I’m so glad I listened to the reviews saying that this book will stick with you because I feel changed by this book, and I know that I will remember it always. Do yourself a favor: go out and read this book. You will not be disappointed. I certainly wasn’t!

The Bronze Horseman

The Bronze Horseman by Paullina SimonsThe Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons took my breath away. Absolutely and completely took my breath away. The story opens on June 22, 1941, the day Russia goes to war with invading Germany. It is on this day where everything is in chaos that Tatiana and Alexander meet. Tatiana is a young, innocent girl, and Alexander is an officer in the Red Army. Nothing is certain in their lives except for their love for each other.

Tatiana struggles to hide her love from her sister Dasha who is convinced that Alexander is the one for her. Add in the blockade of Leningrad, and Tatiana and Alexander have incredible hurdles to get over. I don’t want to say anymore, plot-wise as I don’t want to spoil anything for you. I won’t even tell you how they meet because it’s just so magical and carries throughout the entire book (and series for that matter).

I have loved this book since the instant I began reading it. Tatiana and Alexander climb from the pages and into reality through Simons’ words. You go through their struggles, their hunger, their longing, and their love. You feel every emotion as if it were happening to you. You cry with them, and laugh with them, and love with them. Their story is truly epic. One that will survive forever.

You will not want to put this book down once you start. I brought it with me everywhere. I read it at the gym, at stoplights, on work breaks, before bed, eating breakfast. I wanted to read it again the instant I finished it. And the last few lines are so beautiful that you won’t be able to stop your tears. Don’t worry I won’t spoil them for you.

I spent such a long time trying to find some quotes to share with you that won’t lessen the magic of the story, and I could only come up with one:

“They kissed as if in a fever…they kissed as if the breath were leaving their bodies.”

I think it embodies the relationship between Tatiana and Alexander perfectly. So beautiful. So incredible. So amazing. If I could experience a life such as theirs, I don’t know if I could survive, but if I have a man who loves me the way Alexander loves Tatiana nothing could tear us apart.

Please do me a favor, do yourself a favor, and read this book. You will not be disappointed. I know I wasn’t.

Happy Ever After

Happy Ever After by Nora RobertsHappy Ever After by Nora Roberts is the conclusion of the Bride Quartet. This is Parker’s story. Parker and her three best friends run Vows, the all-inclusive wedding event company. Parker is the glue holding everyone together. She fields calls from frantic brides, diverts disaster, and makes sure everything is pulled off without a hitch. But with so much going on is she leaving herself open to falling in love?

Enter Malcolm Kavanaugh, one of her brother’s friends. He’s everything the polished Parker isn’t. He’s rough around the edges and speaks what he thinks. He irritates and turns Parker on all at the same time. Parker has the perfect vision of her life, but the only question is is whether Malcolm is a part of that vision.

I think that by the time Nora Roberts got to Parker, she just wanted to finish the series so she could go on to something else. The novel felt really thrown together and didn’t seem to have been thought out well enough. I was really looking forward to this one because Parker and Malcolm are so different, and their previous encounters sent sparks flying. I felt as if their characters were almost completely different in this one, especially Malcolm.

I did like reading it. It was nice and fluffy, and I wanted to see how everything turned out for the four friends. It was an okay conclusion. It could have been a lot better. I think Nora Roberts lost something in this book. I hope she can find it again!

Double Standards

Double Standards by Judith McNaughtDouble Standards was another delightful novel by Judith McNaught. Lauren Danner’s father is in ill-health, and with his medical bills mounting, Lauren knows she has to do something to help with his finances. Having recently graduated college with a masters in music, Lauren has lost her desire to be a concert pianist. Instead she finds herself interviewing with a distant relative who heads a business that is slowly slipping through his fingers as a result of competition with Sinco. Seeing an opportunity in Lauren, he hires her to spy on the competition.

Spying doesn’t sit well with Lauren, and she vows to botch up her job interview with Sinco, but finds herself hired when Nick Sinclair, president of Global Industries which owns Sinco, calls a few people and gets her another interview. When offered the job, Lauren doesn’t turn down the opportunity to work near Nick. Soon she finds herself falling in love with him, but he sees her only as his next conquest.
Lauren and Nick have wonderful chemistry between them, and as the novel progresses, it’s hard not to feel for both of them. Lauren is strong, and, after being hurt by Nick, she works hard to make sure he doesn’t again. Nick, though his actions don’t always speak highly of him, is still likable, especially after his childhood is revealed.
I enjoyed this novel. Though, I still think I like her historical novels the most.

Late Night Talking

Late Late Night Talking by Leslie SchnurNight Talking by Leslie Schnur is about Jeannie Sterling who has a late-night radio show. One night Jeannie has a less than pleasant run in with a Hummer driver and proceeds to rant about him on-air only to find out that this same man is Nicholas Moss, the new owner of the radio station. She soon finds herself attracted to him but finds her life spinning out of control as she starts to lose her best friend Luce.

This novel was just okay for me. I didn’t like it as much as I was expecting too. There was something about the characters that didn’t quite work for me. I read Leslie Schnur’s previous novel, The Dog Walker, and felt pretty much the same way. I felt the book had potential but didn’t quite live up to my expectations.

Bright Eyes

Bright Eyes by Catherine AndersonBright Eyes by Catherine Anderson begins when Zeke Coulter’s house is vandalized by a young boy. Zeke chases after him and meets his single mother, Natalie Patterson. Zeke is instantly drawn to her but knows that the damage her son Chad caused can not go unpunished so he strikes a bargain with her for Chad to work off the damage. As Zeke gets to know Chad, he sees that Chad is not a bad kid just one who needs encouragement. Zeke finds himself not only falling in love with Natalie but with her son and daughter as well.

Natalie struggles as a single mother, trying to support her two children. The nightclub she owns is not doing as well as it used to, so when Zeke appears in her life, he’s a bit of fresh air. Things seem to be going well for once, until Natalie is suddenly accused of murdering her ex-husband.
My friend lent me this, and I really enjoyed reading it. The characters were very believable, and the plot was realistic, even with Natalie’s accusation of murder. Anderson made sure there were conflicts and hardships for her characters to overcome before they could finally be together. The writing was good, and I wouldn’t mind reading another novel by this author.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...