Tuesday, September 25, 2012


Congrats, Dawn, for winning Abducted
This week I am giving away Nothing to Hide by J. Mark Bertrand. To enter to win, leave a comment telling me about a book you've read that was set in your city. Nothing to Hide (and the others in the Roland March series) is set in Houston, which makes me smile as I read about streets, suburbs, and restaurants.

Get a second entry by leaving a comment telling me you follow the blog.

Be sure to leave an email address.
I'll pick a winner next Tuesday.
I can only ship to the US.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Bridge: A Review

Karen Kingsbury delivers a heartfelt Christmas story about second chances in The Bridge. Charlie and Donna have run The Bridge in Franklin, Tennessee, for decades, treating each patron as family and creating a safe haven for readers. After a 100 year flood, the bookstore is destroyed, and Charlie and Donna are on the brink of closing the store. When Ryan Kelly hears of the bookstore’s fate, he starts a campaign to save The Bridge, where he fell in love for the first and only time. Will giving The Bridge a second change also give him a second chance with the Molly, the girl who got away?

The Bridge reminds me of Kingsbury’s Red Glove series:  a heartwarming love story featuring a young couple torn apart by family expectations, an older couple bound together by trials, and the love of Jesus that gives never gives up.

Told from all four main characters’ points of view, I felt the character development was lacking, especially at the beginning where the characters were just reminiscing about the past and kept repeating the same feelings over and over. Having a little more action and the past told throughout the story would have made me love the characters from the beginning. However, once the entire background story is told, the pace picks up, and through their actions, the characters become just as endearing as I pictured their bookstore to be. I love Charlie and Donna. Their love for one another and for the readers in their town was beautiful, and I wish there had been a book about their love story and how they built their business.  Ryan and Molly are likeable characters as well and provide a nice balance to Donna and Charlie’s story.

Living in a huge city like Houston, I’ve never had a bookstore that was more than just a place to buy a book. This book made me long to visit a small town and see if a place like this really exists. The librarian in me hopes it does. Karen did such a great writing about the actual store that it almost felt like a fifth character and probably my favorite one of all.

I know a lot of Karen’s readers were disappointed with her last couple of books (me included). I hope they’ll give this book a chance because it seems like a return to the style/topic that fans have come to expect from Karen’s books.

I received this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Nothing to Hide: A Review

When a body is found without a head and the hands de-gloved, Houston Detective March is called into work undercover to help track the arms sales from the Mexican Cartel. What he finds is more twisted than he could imagine with the corruption reaching the FBI and the cover-up going back to the first crime that pulled March into detective work.

Switching back and forth time periods, this book requires your  full attention to keep up with the characters, crimes, and adventures. However, it is worth the effort. While complex, the plot moves along quickly and will keep you guessing. I was just as surprised as March when the final twist was revealed.

Readers of the first two books will enjoy the most complex development of March to date with the insight into why he does what he does. There are a lot of great murder mysteries out there, but this one has better character development than most that I've read.

Bertrand definitely saved the best for last. This epilogue is amazing and demonstrates the growth of March as a character and Bertrand as a writer. I can't explain what exactly what makes it so special other than it resonated with me more than I expect from a mystery novel.

Fans of suspense will love this book. It's labeled Christian fiction, but it's light on the preaching and heavy on the action, which is how I like my mysteries.

I was given this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.


It was great to hear you girls are not speeders like me. :) I've only gotten two or three tickets, so I don't think that's too bad for 16 years of driving.
Congrats to Melanie for winning Accused.
Today I'm giving away Abducted, which is the sequel to Accused.

To enter to win, leave a comment about your favorite baby names. (I'm trying to think of a happy topic about a book where a baby is abducted.) I love babynames.com. My former co-workers used to make fun of me for playing around on that website for fun.

Leave a second comment letting me know you follow the blog.

Leave your email address.
I'll pick a winner next Tuesday. I can only ship to the US.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Today I'm giving away a copy of Accused by Janice Cantore. To enter to win, leave a comment telling me about your first ticket. I was like 19, and I was speeding bad, trying to drive home to Houston from Dallas at like 1 a.m. He bumped my speed down so that I could do defensive driving. I was so thankful.

I'll pick a winner next Tuesday. I can only ship to the US.

Random comment: I know I haven't mailed packages in a while. I switched school districts (yay), but that means I haven't gotten a pay check since July 20th. Thankfully, I taught summer school and had extra money from that, but money has been tighter than usual. I get paid this week and have mailing packages on my to-do list.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Congrats to Liz R. for winning The Bride Wore Blue. Today, I'm givinga way Prize of My Heart. To enter to win, leave a comment about the prize of your heart.
I can only ship to the US. I'll pick a winner next week. Be sure to leave your email address.

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Guest Book: A Review

When Macy was a little girl, her family took an annual trip the Carolina beach. When she was too young to write in the guest book, her father encouraged her to draw a picture. For the next decade, she exchanged pictures with a boy who visited the beach house later in the summer. After a tragedy, her family quit going to the beach house, but Macy still remembers the guest book and wonders what happened to the boy she shared her heart with. Deciding to go back one more time to the beach house, Macy's family experiences a summer of healing and mystery as Macy determines to find the boy from her past.


I read this book a month or so ago and forgot to review it, which is surprising because I loved it. The storyline is somewhat slow--not an action packed book but full of interesting funny mishaps and plenty of character growth. I was kept guessing who the guy from her past was and I was definitely pleasantly surprised when I found out who he was.


The best part of the book was the character development of not only Macy but also her mother and brother. Switching easily from the past to the present (without confusing the reader), the author gives reader a better understanding of who these people are and why they are the way they are. The past made the present more poignant and the message of the book more touching.


Fans of Christian fiction will enjoy this beautiful book. It felt like a coming of age story and a romance wrapped into one.

I received this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.


Abducted: A Review

After finding the mayor's killer, Carly Edwards is thrilled to be back in patrol with her partner Joe. When Joe's wife is hospitalized for a strangle illness, their infant son is kidnapped, and Carly must join forces with her ex-husband, who is acting distant after wanting to reconcile, and the town reporter, who wants more than just a story from Carly. Will the three be able put their feelings aside to find out who is behind the kidnapping?
There are several interesting story lines in Abducted. First, you have the kidnapping of Joe's son, AJ, which turns out to be much more than just a kidnapping. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader interested and just a little surprised along the way.
Like the first novel, there is also a lot of spiritual growth as Carly's newly found faith is tested time and time again. There were a couple times where the spiritual aspect bordered on preachy, but it deepened the character of Carly--a new Christian excited to share with everyone.
While I enjoyed the novel, I wasn't thrilled with Carly's relationship with Nick. He was one of my favorite characters in the first book, but for the first half of this book, I wanted him to go away. Readers could forgive him in book one, but it seemed too early in the reconciliation to have him acting like a jerk again.
I don't want to spoil the ending, but I'm not sure how I feel about it. It felt a little rushed. I guess I'll have to read book three to see what happens next.
Fans of Christian police novels will enjoy this addition to the series. I do recommend reading them in order.
I was given this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Postcards from Camp: A Review

The idea is simple: Michael doesn't want to go to camp, but since his father had such a fun time at camp as a kid, he's forcing Michael to go. Through postcards and letters, the reader sees Michael's experiences and his change in attitude towards camp.

While the idea may be normal, the presentation of the story is not. The writing is minimal (backs of postcards and a few letters), the colors are bright, and the drawings are detailed. Young readers will enjoy pulling out the letters from the envelops and the briefness of the postcards. Older readers will enjoy the dad's humor in his postcards that play off of Michael's complaints in the previous letter.

I am glad to see this title on the 2012-2013 Bluebonnet List because I know the kids in my library will love this book. I just hope they put the little letters back in the envelop for the next reader to enjoy.