Sunday, November 30, 2014

Book Review: The Job

The Job (Fox and O'Hare, #3)
Author: Janet Evanovich & Lee Goldberg
Publication Date: November 18, 2014
Publisher: Bantam
Series: Fox and O’Hare # 3

He’s a charming con man and she’s a dedicated FBI agent, and they’re about to drive each other crazy . . . again!

The FBI had one demand when they secretly teamed up Special Agent Kate O’Hare with charming con man Nicolas Fox—bring down the world’s most-wanted and untouchable felons. This time it’s the brutal leader of a global drug-smuggling empire. The FBI doesn’t know what their target looks like, where he is, or how to find him, but Nick Fox has a few tricks up his sleeve to roust this particular Knipschildt chocolate–loving drug lord.

From the streets of Nashville to the back alleys of Lisbon, from the rooftops of Istanbul to the middle of the Thames, Nick and Kate chase their mark. When they find themselves pitted against a psychopathic bodyguard and a Portuguese enforcer who gets advice from a pickled head, they decide it’s time to enlist some special talent—talent like a machete-wielding Somali pirate, a self-absorbed actor, an Oscar-winning special effects artist, and Kate’s father Jake, a retired Special Forces operative. Together they could help make this Fox and O’Hare’s biggest win yet . . . if they survive.

She pulled out her phone and showed Ryerson the photo. “Fox has come out into the open again.” “Lucky you.”

“Do not leave the United States until this is over,” Kate told him. “Go into hiding. Act as if you’re a fugitive on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list. That shouldn’t be too hard for you…since you are number seven.”

More than that, he couldn’t take a chance on Serena tagging along and discovering he was working for the FBI.

Janet Evanovich has, for quite some time, been one of my favorite authors to read and follow. Her work is always sharp and witty and her characters never disappoint. This series is no different. I have never read any of Lee Goldberg’s books, but the two of these authors truly make a dynamic duo. Each installment is better than the last! Nick Fox and Kate O’Hare truly make an unbeatable team. I have found myself falling more and more for Nick’s character and I love all of his jokes lined with sexual tension that are usually directed at Kate. Nick shows up in all the most unexpected places and continually ignores Kate’s wishes and demands. He refuses to let her take a case alone and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Just like the authors that created them, Nick and Kate work so well together and their personalities make each new book a great success!

Kate’s character really caught my attention in this installment because I can see Nick’s influence on her life. She is warming up to Nick in more ways than one and I was happy to see her starting to drift away from the “follow every single rule” lifestyle that she usually abides by. Nick, for those of you who do not know, is an extremely successful conman/art thief, who was busted out of prison to work alongside the FBI. Yes, he is that good. Kate has really had to learn to adjust to Nick’s fly by night personality, and I liked being able to see her warm up to him more and more. Be sure to check out this amazing and adventurous mystery series!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Bantam in exchange for my honest review***

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Book Review: Surprised By Love

Surprised by Love (The Heart of San Francisco #3)Author: Julie Lessman
Publication Date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Revell
Series: The Heart of San Francisco # 3

Shy and unattractive as a child, Megan McClare has always been teased by her classmates. But when she returns home from her senior year in Paris, the wallflower has suddenly blossomed into a beauty. With ambitions to become a lawyer or doctor, Megan accepts an internship at the district attorney's office only to discover that she will be working with Devin Caldwell, a boy who mercilessly mocked her at school--and with whom she was hopelessly enamored. She turns to her dear friend Bram Hughes for support and advice. But Bram's vision is clouded by his sudden unwelcome attraction to a girl he had always thought of as a kid sister. He advises forgiveness, but can he forgive himself for pushing the woman he loves into the arms of another man?

No longer that shy mousy girl afraid of her own shadow, she was now a young woman whose confidence was slowly changing from being anchored by others’ approval to the approval of the only One who mattered.

A warmth unlike any she’d ever known emanated through her chest along with the keen thrill of adventure.

“Come on, Meg – exactly how many marriage proposals did you get in Paris?”

“Our Mr. Caldwell is more of a baboon.”

Writing reviews for Julie Lessman’s books is always an easy thing to do. Each new novel promises adventures, love, and exciting new characters ready to fulfill their destinies. If you are like me and you have followed the McClare family, then you were ready for this final book in the series to provide some answers for you. It definitely does that! I am going to say upfront that this book was not meant to stand alone. The series is worth reading and following. Lessman is clever with the questions she purposefully left unanswered from the first books, and I was happy with all of the answers I was given in this final edition. The only downside to this book was that Megan was not my favorite of the three sisters. I enjoyed her well enough, but I still have a particular admiration of Cassidy from the very first book.

Julie’s heroines are always easy to support and admire. She writes women that have big dreams and goals; women who are strong and not afraid to fight for what is right or what is theirs. Megan’s goal was to win Bram’s love, but she also worked to help the less fortunate of the town. Her story was quick to read and very light and fulfilling. I enjoyed every minute of it, and I especially enjoyed being able to catch up with the other couples from the first two books. That has to be one of the best parts of this series; Lessman likes to hold on to her characters and continues to build on their relationships even after their stories are finished. This is another reason why it is so important to read the first two books in this series first!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Revell in exchange for my honest review***

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Book Review: Persuasion, Captain Wentworth, and Cracklin' Cornbread

Persuasion, Captain Wentworth and Cracklin' Cornbread (Jane Austen Takes the South, #3)Author: Mary Jane Hathaway
Publication Date: November 11, 2014
Publisher: Howard Books
Series: Jane Austen Takes The South # 3

A lively Southern retelling of Jane Austen’s Persuasion, featuring Lucy Crawford, who is thrown back into the path of her first love while on a quest to save her beloved family home.

Lucy Crawford is part of a wealthy, well-respected Southern family with a long local history. But since Lucy’s mother passed away, the family home, a gorgeous antebellum mansion, has fallen into disrepair and the depth of her father’s debts is only starting to be understood. Selling the family home may be the only option—until her Aunt Olympia floats the idea of using Crawford house to hold the local free medical clinic, which has just lost its space. As if turning the plantation home into a clinic isn’t bad enough, Lucy is shocked and dismayed to see that the doctor who will be manning the clinic is none other than Jeremiah Chevy—her first love.

Lucy and Jeremiah were high school sweethearts, but Jeremiah was from the wrong side of the tracks. His family was redneck and proud, and Lucy was persuaded to dump him. He eventually left town on a scholarship, and now, ten years later, he’s returned as part of the rural physician program. And suddenly, their paths cross once again. While Lucy’s family still sees Jeremiah as trash, she sees something else in him—as do several of the other eligible ladies in town. Will he be able to forgive the past? Can she be persuaded to give love a chance this time around?

He was like air to her then, and she couldn’t live without him.

“I would hope the future of the South is about more than relivin’ old battles and knowing which cannon they used.”

“Anyway, even if I weren’t having a wedding, it would be my solemn duty to make sure you were versed in all things Jane.”

He’d only needed one summer to fall in love with Lucy, but it had taken ten years to get over her. And darned if he was going to let it all happen again.

Once again Mary Jane Hathaway brings her readers a lighthearted romance full of all the humor and struggle that we tend to be drawn to with this particular genre. This is the third book in her Jane Austen Takes The South series, and she has skillfully retold Jane Austen’s Persuasion and made it completely her own. Lucy Crawford, our heroine in this tale, is living with her widower father in her childhood home and she feels as if her life is slipping through her grip. She is constantly worrying about their impending debt, that her father seems to pay no attention to, and she realizes that her beautiful childhood home is falling to shambles. Not long after the opening scenes, readers learn about a past relationship that Lucy endeared and ended because of the dislike her family showed towards her young suitor. Lucy and Jeremiah are reuniting under what Lucy wishes were better circumstances, but their love story is enough to have you laughing, gasping, and praying they make the right choices all at once!

I have read many Jane Austen retellings in my time as a book blogger, but this is the first retelling I have read of Jane’s Persuasion. This story is written so beautifully and with such attention to detail, that it does not matter if you are fan of Jane Austen, it doesn’t even matter if you have ever read a Jane Austen novel, there is still something in this book that everyone can love and appreciate. These books are clean and would be appropriate for young adults as well. I cannot promise that you will not become frustrated with our main characters, because you most likely well, but it is completely worth watching them work on the kinks in their own lives together. Grab this series if you are looking for something cozy to snuggle up with this Thanksgiving!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Howard Books in exchange for my honest review***

Friday, November 21, 2014

Book Review: The Princess Spy

The Princess SpyAuthor: Melanie Dickerson
Publication Date: November 4, 2014
Publisher: Zondervan

Margaretha has always been a romantic, and hopes her newest suitor, Lord Claybrook, is destined to be her one true love. But then an injured man is brought to Hagenheim Castle, claiming to be an English lord who was attacked by Claybrook and left for dead. And only Margaretha---one of the few who speaks his language---understands the wild story. Margaretha finds herself unable to pass Colin's message along to her father, the duke, and convinces herself 'Lord Colin' is just an addled stranger. Then Colin retrieves an heirloom she lost in a well, and asks her to spy on Claybrook as repayment. Margaretha knows she could never be a spy---not only is she unable to keep anything secret, she's sure Colin is completely wrong about her potential betrothed. Though when Margaretha overhears Claybrook one day, she discovers her romantic notions may have been clouding her judgment about not only Colin but Claybrook as well. It is up to her to save her father and Hagenheim itself from Claybrook's wicked plot.

Margaretha couldn’t stop thinking about the poor young Englishman who had been brought to Frau Lena’s chamber.

Margaretha left her, feeling an urgency to pray for the poor young man who seemed so lost.

“I am the happiest when I can hear your voice.”

“And I thank God that you love me.”

Melanie Dickerson’s stories never disappoint. I have been following her work for years and will continue to do so; each story continues to amaze me and entrance me as a reader. This book has more of a slow pace, but this is no complaint because Melanie’s writing is so rich and vivid that you want to savor every minute that you are involved in the lives and actions of her characters. The romance in this book blossomed slowly and it is always nice to get to know the main characters before they fall in love with each other. This book is perfect for teenage girls, as the message is to trust God in all aspects and down all paths in life and love. I would suggest Melanie’s books for anyone who likes to be removed from reality and doesn’t intend to stop reading for a few hours. Her books are impossibly hard to put down and there are so many great ones to choose from.

From teenage girls all the way to young adult women, this story is sure to reach out to most of them, if not all of them. Margaretha, our heroine, is brave, bold, and courageous. Who could ask for more in a female lead? So often when authors write courageous female leads, they seem to be written with a tomboyish flair, but Margaretha does not fit that mold. She was a regular young girl with her head in the clouds at times and had a reputation for being a hopeless romantic. She fits the mold of what a lot of teenage girls go through at one time in their life or another. She is the perfect role model for growing adolescent girls. P.S. I also am hearing that this might not be the last book in this series; read them all as quickly as you can!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Zondervan in exchange for my honest review***

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Book Review: What The Lady Wants

What the Lady Wants: A Novel of Marshall Field and the Gilded AgeAuthor: Renee Rosen
Publication Date: November 4, 2014
Publisher: NAL Trade

In late-nineteenth-century Chicago, visionary retail tycoon Marshall Field made his fortune wooing women customers with his famous motto: “Give the lady what she wants.” His legendary charm also won the heart of socialite Delia Spencer and led to an infamous love affair. 
The night of the Great Fire, as seventeen-year-old Delia watches the flames rise and consume what was the pioneer town of Chicago, she can’t imagine how much her life, her city, and her whole world are about to change. Nor can she guess that the agent of that change will not simply be the fire, but more so the man she meets that night.…

Leading the way in rebuilding after the fire, Marshall Field reopens his well-known dry goods store and transforms it into something the world has never seen before: a glamorous palace of a department store. He and his powerhouse coterie—including Potter Palmer and George Pullman—usher in the age of robber barons, the American royalty of their generation.
But behind the opulence, their private lives are riddled with scandal and heartbreak. Delia and Marshall first turn to each other out of loneliness, but as their love deepens, they will stand together despite disgrace and ostracism, through an age of devastation and opportunity, when an adolescent Chicago is transformed into the gleaming White City of the Chicago’s World’s Fair of 1893.

“Because I saw promise in Chicago. I knew this swampland in the middle of the country was going to be the key to prosperity. This city has waterways and railroads, and we’re smack in the center of everything. I knew if anything worthwhile was going to happen in this country, it was going to have to go through Chicago.”

She supposed she fell in love with him at the same time the rest of Chicago did.

Though she recalled that the night they met, Bertha said he was thirty-seven, twenty years her senior – Delia Spencer recognized that there was something rare, something extraordinary about Marshall Field.

Renee Rosen caught my interest with her book Dollface, so naturally I was besides my waiting for this book to finally release. She has quickly made her way on my list of favorite authors, and with her stunning historical fiction novels full of interesting and intriguing characters, there is no question as to why she is definitely an author to watch. This story features Marshall Fields, the famous department store owner of Chicago, and his mistress, Delia. Despite the fact that Marsh and Delia are having an affair, I found myself rooting for their relationship because of the harsh marriages that they were both in otherwise. This story is full of thrilling characters, other than Marshall and Delia, and truly paints a wonderful story of what was essentially the development of the modern day department store after the Great Fire of Chicago.

The story spans years and years of Delia’s life, but never gets dull or boring. Rosen has meaning and purpose behind every chapter, page, and word she included in this novel. The story, time period, and drama are all so compelling, and even though the story is full of so many different people, places, and events, it is extremely fast-paced and easy to read. Renee Rosen has earned a place atop my favorite’s shelf and I will, from this point on, anxiously await all of her upcoming releases. The Great Fire of Chicago has always been an event that has sparked my interest, and Rosen made it come alive unlike any author I have ever read ever has before. I highly suggest cuddling up with a copy of this book this November!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at NAL Trade in exchange for my honest review***

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Book Review: At Bluebonnet Lake

At Bluebonnet Lake (Texas Crossroads, #1)Author: Amanda Cabot
Publication Date: October 21, 2014
Publisher: Revell
Series: Texas Crossroads # 1

Marketing maven Kate Sherwood’s world is fast-paced, challenging, and always changing. The last thing she wants to do is slow down to a crawl at Rainbow’s End, a dilapidated resort in the Texas Hill Country. But she cannot deny her ailing grandmother’s request to visit the place where she and her deceased husband spent one glorious week (albeit fifty years ago). There Kate meets Greg Vange, the resort’s handyman. But there’s more to Greg than meets the eye–billions more, in fact, as he recently sold his successful software company and is at the resort in search of what’s next for his life.

Kate isn’t looking for romance, but she can’t deny the sparks of attraction that fly every time she and Greg are together. She even starts to see potential in the rundown resort. Could there be a future there? Or will Kate’s long-sought promotion take her back to the big city?

The smile she gave him was so bright you’d think she’d just been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The truth was, Greg defied categorization. That must be the reason she found him so intriguing.

“They’re mighty proud of their peaches – even put them on their license plates.”

“I know you think you’re happy with your life, but I wish you’d chase rainbows. Just once. Promise me you’ll do it.”

Amanda Cabot is an author that I have followed for years and will continue to follow because she is such a vivid writer and she creates characters that stay with me long after I have finished reading the book. I immediately felt a strong relatable connection with Kate and Greg, our main characters. They are both at a “crossroads” in their lives, just like many of us have been at one point or another. Kate’s journey to Rainbow’s End, the resort she is visiting with her grandmother, was just what both she and Greg needed. Their attraction to each other is immediate and constant and you will be rooting them on from the sidelines from the very first page.

Rainbow’s End was an exciting place for me to venture in the short day and a half that it took me to read this story. Kate isn’t the biggest fan of Rainbow’s End when she first arrives, but she soon realizes that she is on a journey and was ultimately headed down the wrong path until her trip there. I loved watching Kate, most of all, coming to the realization that her own life needed a few changes. The two main characters quickly find and realized how much of a connection they truly do share. Their romance is not rushed or forced and I can really appreciate that from any author.

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Revell in exchange for my honest review***

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Book Review: Dirty Rowdy Thing

Dirty Rowdy Thing (Wild Seasons, #2)Author: Christina Lauren
Publication Date: November 4, 2014
Publisher: Gallery Books
Series: Wild Seasons # 2

From the New York Times bestselling author of Beautiful Bastard, Beautiful Stranger, and Beautiful Player, Book Two of the brand-new Wild Seasons series that started with Sweet Filthy Boy—a story of friends, love, and lust.

Despite their rowdy hookups, Harlow and Finn don’t even like each other...which would explain why their marriage lasted only twelve hours. He needs to be in charge and takes whatever he wants. She lives by the Want-something-done? Do-it-yourself mantra. Maybe she’s too similar to the rugged fisherman—or just what he needs.

I’m not sure if being with Finn is an escape, or a new dangerous obsession.

He could only do rowdy because he felt what I felt; that whip-crack unleashing that comes when you meet the person who frees you.

I am the biggest, most self-absorbed asshole of all time.

Harlow and Finn are back after one wild night in Vegas and a marriage annulment. When Finn travels to California on business, all Harlow can think about is that Finn and their crazy night together, if you catch my drift. Their relationship is nothing romantic; Harlow and Finn both have a lot of issues going on within their own lives and they prefer to use each other as a distraction. They definitely have a “friends with benefits” agreement and their “relationship” sure did bring enough entertainment for me and other readers in the first book in this series, Sweet Filthy Boy. Christina Lauren in back with the second book in this series and I am happy to report that it packs just as much punch as the first. She is truly gifted at her genre and I rank her writing and books along the same lines as Abbi Glines and Colleen Hoover.

The reason that I love Harlow and Finn so much is because they hate each other. However, this does not remain true. Of course, you could probably guess what would become of these two. They try to resist the temptation they feel, but the human heart is such a fickle thing. Harlow and Finn share such a realistic relationship. If they are not sexually involved then they are fighting about something ridiculous. It is so easy to become wrapped up in both of them. It is like watching your favorite reality show. I am just so sad that I have to wait until September 2015 for the next book to be released!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Gallery Books in exchange for my honest review***

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Book Review: Unleashed

Unleashed (Love to the Rescue, #1)Author: Rachel Lacey
Publication Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: Forever
Series: Love to the Rescue # 1

What happens when you find the right one at the wrong time?

Cara Medlen has a serious case of animal attraction. And it's not because of all the foster dogs she's rescued. She's got it bad for her incredibly sexy neighbor. Her one rule: Don't get attached. It's served her well with the dogs she's given to good homes and the children she's nannied. Yet the temptation of Matt's sexy smile might just convince her that some rules are made to be broken.

Matt Dumont doesn't need his skills as a private investigator to detect disaster on the horizon. Cara is everything he thought he'd never find-gorgeous, funny, and caring. But there's no way he can start a relationship just as he's about to move to another state. Talk about bad timing. As their attraction sizzles too hot to deny, they'll have to make a decision: forget the consequences and let loose, or forget each other and let go...

The problem, Cara decided, was that it had been a very long time since she’d been kissed.

The heel of Cara’s brand-new silver Vera Wang pump sank deep into a wad of gum and stuck. That’s what she got for splurging on designer shoes.

She was in big trouble. And since she apparently had no self-control where he was concerned, she’d better make it a priority to stay far away from Matt Dumont.

This was a wonderful read with a very inspirational message behind it. Cara Medlen, our leading lady, is currently awaiting news from the doctors that she is cancer free. Until that time, she refuses to let herself get caught up in anything that might be cut short if in fact the cancer is still present in her body. Cara has altered her entire life because of this life-threatening disease that claims so many lives every year. She has taken a job as a nanny instead of pursuing her passion of photography, she refuses to let any man get close to her, and the list goes on and on. Matt Dumont has issues of his own, even though they are not life-threatening. These two are quite the unlikely pair; both with trust issues and both have a lot to learn, and hopefully from each other.

Even though this book is a short, sweet romance it has a very inspirational message behind it and makes you realize that nothing in life is guaranteed. The relationship that builds between Cara and Matt is powerful to read and follow. Their relationship and their characters are very dynamic and completely relatable. It was inspiring to watch them make realizations together and learn and grow. This is going to be a series that I will follow, as I have already stalked the author on Goodreads hoping to find information on the next release. I love the animal lover that Cara was and the way that rescue animals were thrown into the plot as well. This was such a charming story and I highly recommend it to romance lovers and animal lovers alike!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Forever in exchange for my honest review***

Monday, November 3, 2014

Book Review: A High End Finish

A High-End Finish: A Fixer-Upper MysteryAuthor: Kate Carlisle
Publication Date: November 4, 2014
Publisher: Signet
Series: A Fixer-Upper Mystery # 1


In the seaside town of Lighthouse Cove in northern California, everyone knows the best man for the job is actually a woman—contractor Shannon Hammer. But while Shannon can do wonders with a power drill and a little elbow grease, she’s about to discover that some problems aren’t so easily fixed....
Shannon’s home-renovation and repair business is booming, but her love life needs work. On a blind date with real estate agent Jerry Saxton, she has to whip out a pair of pliers to keep Jerry from getting too hands on. Shannon is happy to put her rotten date behind her, but when Jerry’s found dead in a run-down Victorian home that she’s been hired to restore, the town’s attractive new police chief suspects that her threats may have laid the foundation for murder.
Determined to clear her name, Shannon conducts her own investigation—with the help of her four best friends, her eccentric father, a nosy neighbor or two, and a handsome crime writer who’s just moved to town. But as they get closer to prying out the murderer’s identity, Shannon is viciously attacked. Now she’ll have to nail down the truth—or end up in permanent foreclosure.…

“You could’ve warned me that installing drywall would be hell on my manicure.”

I could go on and on about the joys of hanging drywall. No wonder I lived alone.

It was Jerry Saxton, my blind date from the other night. He was dead.

Shannon Hammer has recently taken over her family’s restoration business in a little town outside of San Francisco. Shannon is loving her new job until she discovers the dead body of a man that she was setup with on a blind date just days before his death. Shannon knows that she will not rest easy until she has found the killer and put the case to rest. She soon finds out that the deceased man has a long history of abusive relationships, so she knows the suspect list will be quite lengthy. Shannon has a full cast of funny, creative characters to help her along as she works to solve this mystery. Not to mention the fact that there might be a potential love triangle between Shannon and two hunks of Lighthouse Cove.

Lizzy and Jane, Shannon’s best friends, were one of my absolute favorite parts of this book. I love when the heroine has trusty sidekicks to accompany her. Lizzy and Jane are your usual chatty, hilarious secondary characters and act just like you would expect best friends to act. This series has so much room to build and grow as the series continues. The possible love triangle that I mentioned before is steamy and adds a bit of intrigue to the plot as well. This series is off to a great start!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Signet in exchange for my honest review***

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Book Review: Lizzy & Jane

Lizzy and JaneAuthor: Katherine Reay
Publication Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Lizzy and Jane never saw eye to eye. But when illness brings them together, they discover they may be more like Austen’s famous sisters after all.

Lizzy was only a teenager when her mother died of cancer. Shortly after, Lizzy fled from her home, her family, and her cherished nickname. After working tirelessly to hone her gift of creating magic in the kitchen, Elizabeth has climbed the culinary ladder to become the head chef of her own New York restaurant, Feast. But as her magic begins to elude her, Paul, Feast’s financial backer, brings in someone to share her responsibilities and her kitchen. So Elizabeth flees again.

In a desperate attempt to reconnect with her gift, Elizabeth returns home. But her plans are derailed when she learns that her estranged sister, Jane, is battling cancer. Elizabeth surprises everyone—including herself—when she decides to stay in Seattle and work to prepare healthy, sustaining meals for Jane as she undergoes chemotherapy. She also meets Nick and his winsome son, Matt, who, like Elizabeth, are trying to heal from the wounds of the past.

As she tends to Jane's needs, Elizabeth's powers begin to return to her, along with the family she left behind so long ago. Then Paul tries to entice her back to New York, and she is faced with a hard decision: stay and become Lizzy to her sister’s Jane, or return to New York and the life she worked so hard to create?

One misstep can kill a New York restaurant.

“Don’t you want a life?”
“That’s what I’m chasing. My life.”

“Dare to imagine something new.”

I have looked forward to nothing more than the follow-up to Katherine Reay’s 2013 debut. Katherine’s book are anything but ordinary and burst full of that Austen-esque writing that we are know and love. This story is very different from the first and focuses around sisters, Lizzy & Jane. These two sisters have been at odds since their mother’s death, until Lizzy, fed up with her work in a busy New York restaurant, decides to venture out west to visit her father and her sister, Jane. Now that Jane is suffering from cancer as well, Lizzy thinks it is time to put the past behind her and get back to what really matters in life. Katherine did a magnificent job writing the relationship between these two sisters. She is truly a wonderful storyteller.

Any Jane Austen fan will appreciate Reay’s writing because of her originality. Even though her stories are meant to be reminiscent of Austen’s novel, they are still very different in their plot and characters. Her novels evoke such feelings of warmth that you just cannot resist to curl up on the couch with a hot cup of cocoa. This story is more emotional than the first but it was nice to see a different side of Katherine’s ability as an excellent writer. Lizzy’s career as a chef made for a nice added detail because of the sensory details that came along with all the food talk. If you are looking for a fast-paced book to pass a cold night, then look no further.

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Thomas Nelson in exchange for my honest review***