The Sea Keeper’s Daughters ~ by Lisa Wingate

/ bThe Sea Keeper’s Daughters is an unusual story. It is actually two in one. In the main story, Whitney Monroe is trying to save her restaurant from the grips of a ruthless business man. She comes to stay for a period in property which belongs to her but is occupied by her ailing stepfather who despises her. She plans to sell what she can in an attempt to rescue her restaurant.

In the process of going through the relics and documents left in the house by her deceased mother, she stumbles across a treasure trove of letters written from the previous generation. These cause many questions to form in Whitney’s mind as she struggles to understand the relationships between her ancestors.

The plot is cleverly put together and must have entailed a good amount of research. The story contains romance and intrigue, and encourages me, as a South African, to investigate the history of the Appalachian people and the Federal Writer’s Project, neither of which I had ever heard of before reading this book.

My one warning would be the reader needs to read diligently. There were times I was tempted to skim over the long letters, and then I had to go back and read them properly.

I have read and enjoyed previous books by Lisa Wingate, and I hope to do so in the future as well.
You can buy this book here.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review.

Thin Ice ~ by Irene Hannon

Thin IceI was delighted to receive notification of another Irene Hannon novel, and I certainly wasn’t disappointed.

Thin Ice by Irene Hannon is the second book in the Men of Valor Series.

World-class skater Christy Reed lost her parents in a car accident, then some time later, her beloved sister, Ginny, perished in a house fire. Christy has battled to get her emotions and life back under control. Then suddenly, two months later, an envelope arrives in her postbox, addressed in her sister’s handwriting. It contains a short note that claims Ginny is still alive, but warns her not to share the news with anyone, especially the police, or she will face the death of her sister—again.

When she realizes her sister has in fact been kidnapped, she decides to report it to the FBI with the request the investigation is kept undercover.

Lance McGregor, ex-Delta Force operator, is a newbie to the FBI squad when he is told to re-open the case of the house fire. If it wasn’t Ginny who died in the fire, who did? And where is Ginny? Why would anyone kidnap her?

A few chapters into the book, readers receive glimpses of what the perpetrator is up to, and it is clear Christy is in extreme danger. However, there is no indication as to why the fire and kidnapping happened, or what he has planned for Christy.

Christy and Lance team up and despite the suspense it is clear they are falling in love. Unlike many romance novels there is no obstacle to their relationship, apart from the threat to Christy’s life. Christy has a strong faith which rubs off on Lance, and there is no sex or swearing in the book although there is plenty suspense. Readers who have read other Irene Hannon novels will recognise the McGregor brothers. The story is complicated by a crisis with one of the brothers, and Lance is torn in trying to balance his time between the two situations.

Out of all Irene’s books, I think this is the best I have read so far. Her characters are well developed, the plot line gripping, and the end has a twist I didn’t see coming.

I strongly recommend this book and I have no hesitation in awarding it five stars. It can be purchased here.

I received a free advanced digital copy of this novel from the publisher through the “Revell Reads” program in exchange for my unbiased opinion. Thank you to them and to Net-Galley for making it available.

star_3Also of interest: Buried Secrets, (Men of Valor Book #1)

 

 

 

To Catch a Thief Series – by Jill Elizabeth Nelson

burglar

Reluctant Burglar – Book 1:

Art stole her heart . . . Now can she return the favor? Desiree Jacobs faces a ring of cutthroat art thieves and accepts help from the man she most distrusts in her attempt to return priceless art to the rightful owners.

An unusual twist to a clever plot. An entertaining read. Well done Jill! 

 

 

 

Runaway

 

 

Reluctant Runaway – Book 2:

Stolen Indian artifacts . . . A murdered museum guard . . . A missing woman . . . A baby in danger . . . Only Desiree can unearth the horrifying secret that links them all.

A gripping story high in suspense and romance. Thank you for a good read, Jill.

 

 

 

 

smuggler

 

 

Reluctant Smuggler: Book 3

They say keep your friends close and your enemies closer . . . but what if you can’t tell the difference.

Even with Tony at her side, Desiree needs more than luck to survive in this final novel of the series.

Thank you for a fascinating trio of books, Jill. Keep up the good work!

Traces of Guilt – by Dee Henderson

Traces of Guilt Book ReviewI am a fan of Dee Henderson’s novels, and so I was thrilled for the opportunity to review Trace of Guilt. I enjoyed the story immensely, but it is missing the suspense and clear romances of most of her other books. This is not a bad thing; it is just good if the reader anticipates this. The suspense is more of a speculation as no active crime happens in the story. The romance thread is there, but it is either found in established marriages or it is left hanging, presumably to be continued in one of the sequels.

Unlike the majority of Dee’s novels, in Traces of Guilt there is a good deal of “telling” as opposed to “showing”, yet despite that I became absorbed in the story from the beginning and didn’t want to put the book down. I would call it a Christian mystery novel, as the theme revolves around a number of cold cases and who-dun-it and where they hid the bodies.

Those who have enjoyed previous books by this author will enjoy meeting up with a number of old friends from previous stories as well as the introduction of a number of new characters. Nevertheless, the book is a stand-alone and it is not necessary to have read previous books by her. read more

Troubled Waters ~ by Susan May Warren

Troubled Waters is the 4th book in the Montana Rescue Series by Rita Award winner, Susan May Warren.

Blurb

Billionaire Ian Shaw can have everything he wants–except a happy ending. Or at least that’s what it feels like with his fortune recently liquidated, his niece, Esme, still missing, and the woman he loves refusing to speak to him. In fact, he doubts she would date him even if they were stranded on a deserted island.

Despite her love for Ian, Sierra Rose knows he has no room in his life for her as long as the mystery of his missing niece goes unsolved. The only problem is, Sierra has solved it, but a promise to Esme to keep her whereabouts secret has made it impossible to be around Ian.

When the PEAK chopper is damaged and Sierra lacks the funds to repair it, Ian offers a fundraising junket for large donors on his yacht in the Caribbean. But the three-day excursion turns into a nightmare when a rogue wave cripples the yacht and sends the passengers overboard. Shaken up and soaked to the bone, Ian finally has a chance to test his theory when he and Sierra do indeed find themselves washed up on a strange, empty shore.

It will take guts and gumption for the PEAK team to rescue the duo. But it will take a miracle to rescue Ian and Sierra’s relationship.

My Comment:

I enjoyed Troubled Waters and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys fast-paced suspense novels. This is a continuation of the Montana Rescue series and although it could stand alone, I think it’s a help to have read one or more of the earlier books.
There were times when I felt frustrated with the on and off approach of the two main couples. I also found it difficult to keep track of the characters. For that reason I’m awarding 4 stars. I nevertheless look forward to the next in the series.

Unexpected Christmas Hero by Kathi Macias

Unexpected Christmas Hero

What a delightful read! I hated to put it down, even to eat.

By using a young woman and her two children as the main characters, Kathi Macias immediately draws her reader into their desperate situation. I ached for them to have a warm meal, or a proper bed to sleep in. I felt quite cross with Josie at times when she turned down offers of shelter, even though I understood her point of view. I don’t think I could have been that brave. The idea of this young woman and her children curled up in her little “spot behind the cleaners” terrified me, especially with the approaching winter.

I ached for them to have a warm meal, or a proper bed to sleep in. I felt quite cross with Josie at times when she turned down offers of shelter, even though I understood her point of view. I don’t think I could have been that brave. The idea of this young woman and her children curled up in her little “spot behind the cleaners” terrified me, especially with the approaching winter.

Despite it having a Christmassy title, this is a book for all year round. As I followed the story, I became increasingly aware of the tragedy and despair of homelessness. Josie had done nothing to deserve this, and it made me realise how often this is probably the case. I will never look at a homeless person in quite the same way again.

It also made me aware of the even more helpless situation for the homeless person in South Africa, where we do not have the regular soup kitchens and shelters that are described in this book. Oh, that Unexpected Christmas Hero will come to our country so I can encourage people here to buy it. Maybe someone somewhere will catch a vision and start a new work.

The real-life miracle that occurred at the same time as the book’s release was so very exciting, and made to an even more thrilling read. For those who don’t know, the man the publishers chose for the book cover was indeed homeless. As a result of this book’s promotional material, friends of the family recognised him, and today he is reunited with his own family. This book has already brought change and transformation into the lives of many, and I believe it will continue to do so.

Kathi Macias

Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored nearly 40 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. She is a popular speaker at churches, women’s clubs and retreats, and writers’ conferences. She won the 2008 Member of the Year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association) and was the 2011 Author of the Year from BooksandAuthors.net. Kathi “Easy Writer” Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband.

 

Vendetta ~ by Lisa Harris

vendetta

Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.

Christian Suspense

Lisa Harris owes me two almost-sleepless nights as I raced through the story, Vendetta.

This Christian suspense novel has a touch of romance but the story is packed full of action. The story exploded on the first page and just kept going until the end. Each time I read “just to the end of the chapter,” I found myself going on for “just one more page”.

read more

Where She Belongs by Johnnie Alexander

Where She BelongsNewly widowed Shelby Kincaid decides to move with her two young daughters to the small town of Misty Willow to live in her family’s old homestead.

Newly widowed Shelby Kincaid decides to move with her two young daughters to the small town of Misty Willow to live in her family’s old homestead.

She knows there is going to be a lot of work getting the abandoned home to the condition she knows it can be. It is the only place where she ever felt she belonged, and she longs to have her children grow up in touch with their heritage.

The house has been neglected for so long and is in need of massive repairs, however Shelby knows she can do it, and looks forward to the challenge. read more