Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

A Heart Revealed by Julie Lessman

Ten years ago, Emma Malloy fled Dublin for Boston as a battered woman, escaping the husband who scarred her beautiful face. The physical and emotional wounds have faded with time, and her life is finally full of purpose and free from the pain of her past. But when she falls for her friend Charity’s handsome and charming brother, Sean O’Connor, fear and shame threaten to destroy her. Could Sean and Emma ever have a future together? Or is Emma doomed to live out the rest of her life denying the only true love she’s ever known?

Filled with intense passion and longing, deception and revelation, A Heart Revealed will hold readers in its grip until the very last page.

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star

MY THOUGHTS:
Since the first time I read about Emma Malloy, I have wanted to see her with a happy ending and I am glad to say it has finally come! The story didn’t end the way I expected, but it was exceptional! I loved how the story included sub-stories with Charity & her husband and newlyweds Katie & her husband – since Charity is my favorite character this made it extra special.

I always wanted Emma and Sean to get together, ever since their first meeting I felt a spark between them, but because the ring on her hand belongs to another man that was never a possibility.

The trials Emma has gone through are heart-breaking and I learned in this book that Sean has gone through many of his own too. I knew of Emma’s abusive husband before I read this book, but this story goes into much more of the details of that abuse – nothing too graphic, but you see how crazed with unfounded jealousy he was.

‘A Heart Revealed’ is Julie’s best work to date – though my personal favorite is still ‘A Passion Redeemed’. Julie just keeps getting better and better as an author and I can’t wait to read her next book – which sadly is going to be the last book in this series. I highly recommend this book, but since all her books to date are about the same family, be sure that you read all three books in the ‘Daughters of Boston’ series and then book one in the ‘Winds of Change’ series first – so you won’t spoil any of it for yourself.

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A Hope Undaunted by Julie Lessman

What happens when the boy she loved to hate becomes the man she hates to love?

The 1920s are drawing to a close, and feisty Katie O’Connor is the epitome of the new woman—smart and sassy with goals for her future that include the perfect husband and a challenging career in law. Her boyfriend Jack fits all of her criteria for a husband—good-looking, well-connected, wealthy, and eating out of her hand. But when she is forced to spend the summer of 1929 with Luke McGee, the bane of her childhood existence, Katie comes face-to-face with a choice. Will she follow her well-laid plans to marry Jack? Or will she fall for the man she swore to despise forever? 



I GIVE THIS BOOK: 1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star




MY THOUGHTS:
Katie O’Connor is a spunky young woman with high standards for herself and the man she will marry. But when she breaks her father’s curfew with Jack one too many times, she finds herself punished for the summer. Her punishment? Spend the summer volunteering at the Boston Children’s Aid Society, which she finds makes her childhood nemesis, Luke McGee, her boss.

I LOVED reading A Hope Undaunted! Katie, being the baby of the O’Connor family, was always a minor character and seeing her all grown up now was unbelievable. 

A Hope Undaunted was a wonderful book and I highly recommend it. I would strongly suggest that you read the Daughters of Boston Series before you read this book – as this story is a continuation of a family saga. Julie Lessman’s books are my all-time favorites, ones I can read again and again!


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A Passion Denied by Julie Lessman

Has she fallen in love with a man who cannot love her back?

Elizabeth O’Connor has been like the little sister John Brady always wanted, sharing his love of literature and his thirst for God. But in the throes of the reckless Roaring Twenties, Lizzie has grown up. Suddenly she wants more from the man who has been her friend since she was a child. When this shy little bookworm blossoms into a beautiful young woman bent on loving John, she discovers that his past won’t let him return that love. But Lizzie refuses to give up–until his shocking secrets push her away.

Can true love survive the betrayal and deceitful of a painful past . . . or will it be shattered like the fairy-tale dreams of a girl in love?

Brimming with romance, longing, and redemption, A Passion Denied, will quicken your pulse and gladden your heart with a riveting story of the true power of love.

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star

MY THOUGHTS:
It’s the Roaring 20’s and Elizabeth, or Lizzie as she goes by now, is all grown up. She has changed her look to accentuate the fact that she is a woman now, not a little girl – bobbed her hair, figure flattering dresses, make-up, etc. She is longing for Brady to notice her as the woman she is and to stop treating her like she is the little sister he never had.

Brady has a past that has haunted him for years, one that he has yet to deal with and makes him feel unworthy of being with Lizzie. When a man from his past visits him, it all threatens to come to light.

I loved seeing a more in depth view of Lizzie,
 because she was only a minor character in the first two books and an adolescent at that. I feel as though I know her so much better now.

A Passion Denied was a wonderfully enjoyable read, and I highly recommend it! I would strongly suggest that you read A Passion Most Pure  and A Passion Redeemed before you read this book – as this story is a continuation of a family saga.

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A Passion Redeemed by Julie Lessman

Graced with physical beauty, though shallow of heart, Charity O’Connor is a woman who knows what she wants. She sets her sights on the cantankerous Mitch Dennehy, editor at the Irish Times, who has unwittingly stolen her heart. And although the sparks are there, Mitch refuses to fan the coals of a potential relationship with his ex-fiancée’s sister. But Charity has a plan to turn up the heat and she always gets what she wants–one way or another. Is revenge so sweet after all? Or will Charity get burned?

Full of intense passion, betrayal, and forgiveness, A Passion Redeemed will delight Lessman’s fans and draw new ones.

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star


MY THOUGHTS:
‘A Passion Redeemed’ definitely redeemed Charity with me! I will tell you, had I known this book would have been focused on Charity when I finished ‘A Passion Most Pure’, I probably wouldn’t have been anxiously awaiting this book. I love how Julie takes a character that I despised and turned her into a character that I now adore – I would have to say that is nothing short of AMAZING!

In ‘A Passion Most Pure’ I can honestly say that I couldn’t stand her and many times just wanted to slap her! I couldn’t imagine how I could possibly like this book, because of who the main character was going to be. But this book has definitely changed my view of Charity and, in fact, she in now my favorite character.

In this book I learned that while Charity may be beautiful and able to wrap men around her finger, she most desires her father’s love and attention – the way he treats her sister, Faith. This among a few other things explains why she behaves the way she does.

‘A Passion Redeemed’ is wonderful and has become my favorite novel! I highly recommend this book – but make sure you read ‘A Passion Most Pure’ first, otherwise you might spoil the story for yourself.

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A Passion Most Pure by Julie Lessman

She’s found the love of her life.
Unfortunately, he loves her sister.

As World War I rages across the Atlantic in 1916, a smaller war is brewing in Boston. Faith O’Connor finds herself drawn to an Irish rogue who is anything but right for her. Collin McGuire is brash, cocky, and from the wrong side of the tracks, not to mention forbidden by her father. And then there’s the small matter that he is secretly courting her younger sister. But when Collin’s affections shift, it threatens to tear her proper Boston family apart.

Book 1 of the Daughters of Boston series, A Passion Most Pure will carry your heart from the sophisticated streets of Boston to the green hills of Ireland as men go off to war and women long for their return. Full of passion, romance, rivalry, and betrayal, it will captivate you from the first page.

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star


MY THOUGHTS:
Julie Lessman is an AMAZING author! I can’t believe that this is her debut novel! Let me tell you, it is a book that you will not want to put down – so make sure that you start it when you have enough time to finish it in one sitting!

Faith O’Connor is a woman who has a strong faith in the Lord. A faith that was forged by the many trials she had to face as a young child, such as her twin sister dying from Polio. Faith was stricken with the same disease and was near death, but she survived and the only thing that remains is her slight limp.

Colin McGuire is the man that Faith has had a crush on since she was young, but no one knew – least of all Colin. So when Colin began dating Faith’s younger sister Charity, sparks flew – in more ways than one!
With sister set against sister and WWI fast approaching, will this family survive?

I fell in love with these characters almost immediately and, by the time I reached the end, I wanted to pick up the next book right away – unfortunately for me, I had to wait almost a year to do it! The twists and turns in this novel are fantastic! I highly recommend that you read ‘A Passion Most Pure’ and make sure that you have ‘A Passion Redeemed’ ready to pick up as soon as you finish it!

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Stay Tuned Blog Tour: My Review

What happens when a #1 news team becomes the top story instead of reporting it?

For TV producer Melissa Moore, crisis management comes with the job. From employee disputes to her high-maintenance boss, there’s not much she hasn’t seen or can’t handle.

But no one—including Melissa—expects a fistfight during the ten o’clock news. When sexy-but-crazy Alyssa Andrews lands a punch on her co-anchor’s face, Melissa jumps on set to help. She’s determined that WSGA’s reputation won’t be destroyed on her watch.

Both anchors are fired and Melissa agrees to fill in—but not before polishing her look from haircut to heels. While the new Melissa wows WSGA viewers, her personal life starts fraying at the edges. Melissa’s husband is away more than he’s home, leaving cryptic Post-it notes in his wake. Her mother’s antics spiral out of control at the nursing home and a stalker decides Melissa is her next target.

What happens next? Stay Tuned to find out…

I Give This Book:1 star1 star1 star1 star

My Thoughts:
‘Stay Tuned’ was a fun story, but when it jumped ahead I didn’t like that it didn’t say the dates – I found it confusing. It could have at least said “two weeks later” or something like that when it jumped ahead. It is for this reason alone that I gave it four stars.

Melissa is a forty year old woman, whose daughter had recently left home to attend college. Melissa’s marriage is a shadow of what it once was. Her husband and her barely have time for each other, both are so busy with their careers, that they communicate through post-it notes – which sometimes only have a brief message.

Melissa’s mother was a lady who rubbed elbows with the who’s who of Hollywood back in the day, and she wrote many books about them. When at age forty she became pregnant with Melissa, she didn’t hide the fact that it was an unplanned pregnancy. Now Dementia has taken a hold of her and she has a hard time even recognizing her daughter. This is just devastating to Melissa, when all she even wanted was her mother’s love and affection – which she never got.

When station anchors, Alyssa and Tim, are fired, Rick Roberts comes back to the station and Melissa fills in until they can find another woman to fill the job. Melissa begins to realize that she loves being in front of the camera instead of being behind the scenes, but will she be allowed to keep it? Will her marriage survive her husband’s distant behavior and her growing attraction to her co-host?  Will Melissa ever know whether or not her mother cared for her?

Initially, I thought there wasn’t going to be any swearing in this book because the first few times, instead of using a swear word, it just said that they couldn’t repeat what was said when a person was supposed to be swearing. I was hoping that would continue – it did not. I don’t like the use of swear words in a story. Even though there wasn’t a lot of them, I just don’t like books containing swear words – I feel that it takes away from a story. Even though I personally found it offensive, since this isn’t a Christian book, I did not let it affect my rating, and am only mentioning it in case others might be offended as well.

Overall I liked the story and had it not had the swearing in it I would recommend it. So if you don’t mind books with that in it, I think you would enjoy Stay Tuned.

*** I received a complimentary copy of this book to review. I was asked to give my honest opinion of the book – which I have done.***




As part of this special promotional extravaganza sponsored by Novel Publicity, the price of the Stay Tuned eBook edition has dropped to just 99 cents this week.

What’s more, by purchasing this fantastic book at an incredibly low price, you can enter to win many awesome prizes, including lots of Amazon gift cards (up to $100 in amount) and 5 autographed copies of the book. Be sure to enter before the end of the day on Friday, December 2nd, so you don’t miss out.

The Featured Events include:

Monday, Radio Interview with Novel Publicity! We’re kicking-off on the Novel Publicity Free Advice blog. We interviewed Lauren on our radio show Sunday night and have embedded the full podcast and blogged about its highlights. Give it a listen and then leave a comment on the blog post. This is a great chance to get to know more about this fun and bubbly author. One commenter will win an autographed copy of
Stay Tuned. Don’t forget to enter for the other contest prizes while you’re over there!

Tuesday, Twitter sharing contest! A tweet is tiny, only 140 characters. But on Tuesday, it could win you $50. Send the following tweet across the twittersphere, and you just may win a $50 Amazon gift card. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. The winners will be announced Wednesday morning.


Here’s the tweet: Take a break from the holiday frenzy, and read Stay Tuned. It’s fast, fun, and reduced to just 99 cents! http://ow.ly/7zA1e #whirlwind

Wednesday, Google+ sharing contest! Yup, there’s yet another awesome opportunity to win a $50 Amazon gift card, and this time it just takes a single click! Visit Google+ and share Emlyn Chand’s most recent post (you’ll see the Stay Tuned book cover included with it). On Thursday morning, one lucky sharer will be $50 richer. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. Two chances to win with just one click! How about that?

Thursday, Facebook sharing contest! Stop by Novel Publicity’s Facebook page and share their latest post (you’ll see the Stay Tuned book cover included with it). It’s ridiculously easy to win! On Friday morning, one lucky sharer will be $50 richer. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs.

Friday, special contest on the author’s site! Are you ready for some more fun? Take a picture of yourself with your copy of Stay Tuned either in paperback or on an eReading device, tag Lauren Clark’s Facebook page, and you can enter to win one of three Amazon gift cards! A $100 prize will go to the most creative photo, $50 to the best BFF photo, and $50 to the photo with the most people in it. An autographed copy of Stay Tuned is also up for grabs. If you need help learning how to tag a
photo, you can visit Lauren’s Facebook page for detailed instructions.

Remember, it’s all about the books!

About Stay Tuned: What happens when a #1 news team becomes the top story instead of reporting it? For TV producer Melissa Moore, crisis management comes with the job. From employee disputes to her high-maintenance boss, there’s not much she hasn’t seen or can’t handle. But no one—including Melissa—expects a fistfight during the ten o’clock news. When sexy-but-crazy Alyssa Andrews lands a punch on her co-anchor’s face, Melissa jumps on set to help. She’s determined that WSGA’s reputation won’t be destroyed on her watch. Both anchors are fired and Melissa agrees to fill in—but not before polishing her look from haircut to heels. While the new Melissa wows WSGA viewers, her personal life starts fraying at the edges. Melissa’s husband is away more than he’s home, leaving cryptic Post-it notes in his wake. Her mother’s antics spiral out of control at the nursing home and a stalker decides Melissa is her next target. What happens next? Stay Tuned to find out… Get it on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

About the Author: Lauren Clark has been a voracious reader since the age of four and would rather be stranded at the library than on a desert island. In her former life, she worked as an anchor and producer for CBS affiliates in Upstate New York and Alabama. Lauren adores her family, yoga, her new Electra bike, and flavored coffee. She lives near the Florida Gulf Coast. Visit her on her website, Twitter, Facebook, or GoodReads

To Win the Prizes:

1. Purchase your copy of Stay Tuned for just 99 cents on Amazon or Barnes & Noble (You’ll need it for

the big contest on Friday)
2. Fill-out the form on Novel Publicity to enter for the prizes
3. Visit today’s featured event; you may win an autographed copy of the book or a $50 gift card!
…And I can win too!
Over 100 bloggers are participating in this gigantic event, and there are plenty of prizes for us too. The blogger who receives the most votes in the traffic-breaker poll will win a $100 gift card as well. So when you visit Novel Publicity’s site to fill-out the contest entry form, don’t forget to say that I referred you, so I can get a point in the poll. 

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A Sound Among the Trees by Susan Meissner

A Sound Among the Trees: A NovelA house shrouded in time. A line of women with a heritage of loss.

As a young bride, Susannah Page was rumored to be a Civil War spy for the North, a traitor to her Virginian roots. Her great-granddaughter Adelaide, the current matriarch of Holly Oak, doesn’t believe that Susannah’s ghost haunts the antebellum mansion looking for a pardon, but rather the house itself bears a grudge toward its tragic past.

When Marielle Bishop marries into the family and is transplanted from the arid west to her husband’s home, it isn’t long before she is led to believe that the house she just settled into brings misfortune to the women who live there.

With Adelaide’s richly peppered superstitions and deep family roots at stake, Marielle must sort out the truth about Susannah Page and Holly Oak— and make peace with the sacrifices she has made for love.   

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star

MY REVIEW:
‘A Sound Among the Trees’ is the second book by Susan Meissner that I have read and I enjoyed every page of it! I love the fact that this book is set in both present day and the Civil War era – it’s like getting two stories in one!

I was intrigued when I was reading about the house being haunted and couldn’t wait to see what was really going on. So many people were convinced that Holly Oak was haunted by Susannah Page. However, Adelaide thought that it was the house, not Susannah, that was causing the problems.

The story begins with Marielle and Carson’s wedding reception at Holly Oak. It is during the party that Marielle first hears about the rumors of the house being haunted. At first she doesn’t believe it, but slowly doubt begins to creep into her mind. So she tries to uncover the true reason misfortune comes to all the women of Holly Oak and the reason will surprise you!

I loved ‘A Sound Among the Trees’ – it was such a wonderful story! I think that almost anyone would enjoy reading this book. Alhough it is a contemporary novel, it has historical elements. If this is something you like, you should enjoy ‘ Sound Among the Trees: A Novel‘ by Susan Meissner.

*** I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blogging for Books to review. I was asked to give my honest opinion of the book – which I have done. ***

Product Details:

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook Press (October 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307458857
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307458858
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 1 inches
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