Saturday, August 12, 2017

A Name Unknown by Roseanna White (Review)




  • Series: Shadows Over England (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (July 4, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 076421926X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764219269


  • Edwardian Romance and History Gains a Twist of Suspense

    Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins that helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they concentrate on stealing high-value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. But when Rosemary must determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany, she is in for the challenge of a lifetime. How does one steal a family's history, their very name?

    Peter Holstein, given his family's German blood, writes his popular series of adventure novels under a pen name. With European politics boiling and his own neighbors suspicious of him, Peter debates whether it might be best to change his name for good. When Rosemary shows up at his door pretending to be a historian and offering to help him trace his family history, his question might be answered.

    But as the two work together and Rosemary sees his gracious reaction to his neighbors' scornful attacks, she wonders if her assignment is going down the wrong path. Is it too late to help him prove that he's more than his name?

    My Review:

    This was an enjoyable Christian Historical fiction book. It starts a new series called Shadows Over England. I loved Rosemary and Peter. Rosemary is a really good thief who is hired to prove Peter is not loyal to England but to his family's native Germany. Peter is a rather unique person to begin with and being German at this time period is a huge no in England. He can be recluse except for his best friend and his family. He also has good loyal staff. He hires Rosemary to organize his books and papers. They hit it off and become close as they work together. The plot and characters are interesting, unique, and well developed. I look forward to reading the next book in the series. Recommended.


    Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she's homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna's fiction ranges from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. She lives with her family in West Virginia. Learn more at www.roseannamwhite.com.

    Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.


    Saturday, July 29, 2017

    What Hope Remembers by Johnnie Alexander (Review)



  • Series: Misty Willow (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (May 2, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800726421
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800726423


  • When Amy Somers loses her job as a lobbyist, she moves to Misty Willow, well aware that she's crossing bridges she'd burned years before. With all the mistakes she's made and the uncaring things she's done--even to her own family--she can hardly believe that happiness will find her, especially when Gabe Kendall, her first crush and her first kiss, rides back into her life atop a buckskin mare.

    A former Marine, Gabe is at loose ends after serving a prison sentence for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. He sees beyond Amy's hard exterior to the girl he once knew and loved, and he longs to see her open her heart. Yet with his vision clouded by shame for his past and fears about the future, he finds it difficult to see the path ahead.

    But the memory of that long-ago kiss just may have the power to reignite a romance that brings out the best in both of them.

    My Review:

    This is the third book in the Misty Willow series. The characters do repeat with the addition of a few new ones like Gabe. I recommend reading them in order to get the full history of the family. The main focus of this story is Amy Somers. The previous book it was her brother Brett. I was happy to see that Amy was getting her own book. I felt like there was a lot more to her story. This book was hard to read sometimes because of the subject matter. Amy has a horrible eating disorder. The writing was excellent and the characters well developed. Her main love interest is Gabe Kendall. They grew up together but lost contact and now he is back at his aunt's farm. She is back too. The meet by chance and the spark is still there. This was a sweet slow paced story with a few twist. Great end to the series. Recommended.




    Johnnie Alexander is the award-winning author of Where Treasure Hides and Where She Belongs, as well as an accomplished essayist and poet. Her Misty Willow Series was inspired by a 19th century house she lived in as a teen. Join her at www.johnnie-alexander.com to experience the love of random travel and the joy of treasured moments.

    Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.


    Monday, July 10, 2017

    High Summer Readathon Hosted by Michelle at Seasons of Reading

    Seasons of Reading


    http://seasonsreading.blogspot.com/2017/07/sign-up-for-high-summer-readathon.html


    Friday, June 23, 2017

    Japanese Literature Challenge 11 hosted by Dolce Belleza


    This is a reading challenge dedicated to books that were originally published in Japanese. It runs from June 2017 to January 2018. It is hosted by Dolcebelleza. I enjoy this challenge because the books are so different than the majority of what I read. I will at least be rereading the The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa.

    https://dolcebellezza.net/2017/06/23/japanese-literature-challenge-11-welcome/


    Thursday, May 4, 2017

    Vibrant India by Chitra Agrawal (Review)





  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (March 21, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607747340
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607747345


  • From the acclaimed chef and owner of Brooklyn Delhi, a debut cookbook focused on the celebrated vegetarian fare of South India.
    Lifelong vegetarian and chef Chitra Agrawal takes you on an epicurean journey to her mother’s hometown of Bangalore and back to Brooklyn, where she adapts her family’s South Indian recipes for home cooks. This particular style of Indian home cooking, often called the “yoga diet,” is light and fresh, yet satisfying and rich in bold and complex flavors. Grains, legumes, fresh produce, coconut, and yogurt—along with herbs, citrus, chiles, and spices—form the cornerstone of this delectable cuisine, rooted in vegetarian customs and honed over centuries for optimum taste and nutrition. 

    From the classic savory crepe dosa, filled with lemony turmeric potatoes and cilantro coconut chutney, to new creations like coconut polenta topped with spring vegetables 'upma" and homemade yogurt, the recipes in Vibrant India are simple to prepare and a true celebration of color and flavor on a plate. Chitra weaves together the historical context behind the region’s cuisine and how she brought some of these age-old traditions to life thousands of miles away in Brooklyn during the city’s exciting food renaissance.

    Relying on her experience as a culinary instructor, Chitra introduces the essential Indian cooking techniques, tips, and ingredients you’ll need to prepare a full range of recipes from quick vegetable stir frys (corn, basil, and leeks flavored with butter, cumin, and black pepper), salads (citrus red cabbage and fennel slaw with black mustard seeds, curry leaves, and chile), yogurt raitas (shredded beets and coconut in yogurt), and chutneys and pickles (preserved Meyer lemon in chile brine) to hearty stews (aromatic black eyed peas, lentils, and greens), coconut curries (summer squash in an herby coconut yogurt sauce), and fragrant rice dishes (lime dill rice with pistachios). Rounding out the book is an array of addictive snacks (popcorn topped with curry leaf butter), creative desserts (banana, coconut, and cardamom ice cream), and refreshing drinks (chile watermelon juice with mint). Chitra provides numerous substitutions to accommodate produce seasonality, ingredient availability, and personal tastes. The majority of recipes are gluten-free and vegan or can be easily modified to adhere to those dietary restrictions.

    Whether you are a vegetarian or just looking for ways to incorporate more vegetarian recipes into your repertoire, Vibrant India is a practical guide for bringing delicious Indian home cooking to your table on a regular basis.

    My Review:

    This is a beautiful cookbook! The pictures are full color and amazing. I loved her family pictures and background story. These recipes are from Southern India. The recipes are interesting and full of different ingredients. The only bad thing is finding some of them in the South, USA, is difficult. The recipes vary in levels of difficulty and how many ingredients are required. Recommended.





    Chitra Agrawal is the author of Vibrant India: Fresh Vegetarian Recipes from Bangalore to Brooklyn and the founder of Brooklyn Delhi, an award-winning Indian condiments line. Since 2009, she has been serving, writing about, and teaching her family's vegetarian recipes from India with a slant on seasonality and local ingredients. Chitra writes the popular recipe blog The ABCDs of Cooking, teaches vegetarian Indian cooking classes at Brooklyn Kitchen, Brooklyn Brainery, and Whole Foods, and hosts pop-up dinners throughout New York City with creative Indian-inspired menus. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, Food & Wine, Saveur, and Zagat, among others. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.


    Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

    Saturday, April 22, 2017

    Sandpiper Cove by Irene Hannon (Review)



  • Series: Hope Harbor
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (April 4, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800727681
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800727680


  • Hope Harbor police chief Lexie Graham has plenty on her plate raising her son alone and dealing with a sudden rash of petty theft and vandalism in her coastal Oregon hometown. As a result, she has zero time for extracurricular activities--including romance. Ex-con Adam Stone isn't looking for love either--but how ironic is it that the first woman to catch his eye is a police chief? Yet wishing for things that can never be is foolish.

    Nevertheless, when Lexie enlists Adam's help to keep a young man from falling into a life of crime, sparks begin to fly. And as they work together, it soon becomes apparent that God may have a different--and better--future planned for them than either could imagine.

    My Review:

    This was a good Christian fiction romance book. It is book three in the Hope Harbor series. It can stand alone.The characters and plot were well developed and interesting. The main characters in this story are Lexie and Adam Stone. There are other supporting characters like her son and mom. My favorite minor character is Charley, the taco truck man who is also a local artist. He is kind of like a prophet from God. He gives out wisdom to all the townspeople when they come get a taco. Lexie is the town police chief and Adam Stone is a reformed criminal. They do not cross paths until Adam is targeted by a vandal. One of the vandals is caught and Lexie wants Adam to mentor him. Adam and Lexie end up spending more time together. They feel romantic tension from the start. Along the way are some obstacles. The conclusion is good and fits the book. Recommended to fans of the genre.





    Irene Hannon is the bestselling author of more than fifty novels, including One Perfect Spring, Hope Harbor, and Sea Rose Lane, as well as the Private Justice and Men of Valor suspense series. Her books have been honored with three coveted RITA Awards from Romance Writers of America, two Carol Awards, two Reviewers' Choice Awards from RT Book Reviews magazine, a Retailers' Choice Award, three HOLT Medallions, two Booksellers' Best Awards, and a National Readers' Choice Award. She is also a two-time Christy Award finalist. Learn more at www.irenehannon.com

    Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.




    Sunday, April 2, 2017

    Her Secret by Shelley Shepard Gray (Review)



  • Series: The Amish of Hart County
  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Avon Inspire (March 14, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006246910X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062469106
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.6 x 8 inches




  • New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Shelley Shepard Gray begins a new series—The Amish of Hart County—with this suspenseful tale of a young Amish woman who is forced to move to a new town to escape a threatening stalker.
    After a stalker went too far, Hannah Hilty and her family had no choice but to leave the bustling Amish community where she grew up. Now she’s getting a fresh start in Hart County, Kentucky…if only she wasn’t too scared to take it. Hannah has become afraid to trust anyone—even Isaac, the friendly Amish man who lives next door. She wonders if she'll ever return to the trusting, easy-going woman she once was.

    For Isaac Troyer, the beautiful girl he teasingly called “The Recluse” confuses him like no other. When he learns of her past, he knows he's misjudged her. However, he also understands the importance of being grateful for God’s gifts, and wonders if they will ever have anything in common. But as Hannah and Isaac slowly grow closer, they realize that there’s always more to someone than meets the eye.

    Just as Hannah is finally settling into her new life, and perhaps finding a new love, more secrets are revealed and tragedy strikes. Now Hannah must decide if she should run again or dare to fight for the future she has found in Hart County.

    My Review:

    This was a good Amish book. It is the first in a new series The Amish of Hart County. The plot was not your typical Amish storyline. The main character is Hannah Hilty. Her family has to move to Hart County because she had a serious stalker. Hart County, Kentucky is also a different setting than normally seen in an Amish book. The Hiltys have neighbors on one side, the Troyers. Their son Issac, likes Hannah once he gets to know the real her. There are several plot twists. The conclusion is unique and fits the book. Good start to a new Amish series.



    Shelley Shepard Gray is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time HOLT Medallion winner. She lives in southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town’s bike trail.

    Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.