Showing posts with label 4 stars. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 4 stars. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Review: Hitching the Pitcher by Rebecca Connolly, Sophia Summers, Heather B. Moore

Heidi Reads... Hitching the Pitcher by Rebecca Connolly, Sophia Summers, Heather B. Moore

My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it


Sawyer Bennett has a secret. A risky thing, being one of the popular Belltown Six Pack, a group of six guys from the same college baseball team, all of whom got drafted and now play in the Major Leagues. Between the media frenzy over them and his bond with the guys, his secret has to stay carefully hidden if he wants it to stay that way. He needs to focus on his pitching and let everything else fall away.

Running into his former college girlfriend wasn’t supposed to happen. Falling for her again wasn’t supposed to happen. Confessing his secret to her was definitely not supposed to happen. But the harder he falls for Erica Moore, the more important his secret—and she—becomes.

My Review

This was a fun introduction to a new series! Even though the main character is Sawyer, we get to know all the members of the Six Pack, some more than others. I'm looking forward to reading each of their stories! I really liked Erica, but Sawyer was such a head case! He definitely provided the drama and angst with some self-defeating behaviors as he struggles and works through some issues. Erica had the patience of a saint! I was proud of her for giving Sawyer the space he needed and knowing when to leave the ball in his court (or field). :) My husband coaches high school baseball and after reading this book we had an insightful conversation about the mental game that is also played and can prevent a perfectly talented and skilled player from succeeding. Overall, I enjoyed the dynamics of the ball player characters and the chemistry between Erica and Sawyer. Can't wait for the next book!

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

Welcome to Belltown! Six baseball players meet in the college town of Belltown, Massachusettes, becoming best friends, their lives intertwining as they each get called up to the Major Leagues.

Follow Sawyer, Cole, Axel, David, Ryker, and Levi in these six swoony sports romances.

Belltown Six Pack Series:
Hitching the Pitcher
Falling for Centerfield
Charming the Shortstop
Snatching the Catcher
Flirting with First
Kissing on Third

Join the Facebook Group for updates, fun extras, and interacting with the authors!

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Review: The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall

Heidi Reads... The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall

My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it


War Forces a Choice Between Love and Country
A trip home from England to Maryland in 1812 finds Emeline Baratt a captive on a British warship and forced to declare her allegiance between the British and Americans. Remaining somewhat politically neutral on a ship where her nursing skills are desperately needed is fairly easy—until she starts to have feelings for the first lieutenant who becomes her protector. However, when the captain sends her and Lieutenant Owen Masters on land to spy, she must choose between her love for him or her love for her country.

My Review

I enjoyed the early American setting on both land and sea and the theme of patriotism that runs throughout the book. There is plenty of action and I appreciated the historical details that brought authenticity and made me grateful I live now instead of then! The swift pace of the plot made it hard to put the book down and even though I didn't quite connect with the main characters' emotions, I found the story captivating with twists and turns that made me wonder how on earth there would be a happily ever after. I loved the premise that Emeline and Owen are both spying for the same side, yet don't know that about each other and hold the perceived loyalties of the other against them. I would have thought that they'd realize it sooner, but I understand the risk involved if they happened to be mistaken. They were both likeable characters that grew in their faith and learned important life lessons.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

Review: On the Shores of Tregalwen by Deborah M. Hathaway

Heidi Reads... On the Shores of Tregalwen by Deborah M. Hathaway

My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it


A Clean, Regency Romance Novella

When her estranged mother beckons her to London, Hannah Summerfield has no choice but to answer her call. Forced to leave behind her peaceful life in Cornwall, she bids farewell to the seaside, her grandparents—and her childhood sweetheart, Thomas. She becomes subdued at once by Society’s rigid rules and her mother’s censure, and when Thomas’s letters unexplainedly stop, she is left to wonder if she ought to embrace her new life in Town after all. But when her mother pressures her to accept an unwanted proposal, Hannah cannot help but flee to the one place she has ever called home—to the only boy she has ever loved.

After three years apart, Thomas Causey has all but given up hope of Hannah ever returning to Cornwall, fearing she has fallen in love with another. But when she appears on his doorstep, soaked through with rain and covered in mud, he allows himself to long once more for a future with the woman he still loves.

However, Thomas quickly realizes that Hannah is not who she was before. She has left London for a reason—a reason he cannot uncover. He longs for the truth they once so easily shared, but Hannah must first find the courage to rediscover herself—and what her heart truly desires.

My Review

This is a sweet romance without much conflict, but it was still a pleasure to read as Hannah follows her impetuous desire to visit Cornwall and leaves her manipulative mother and London society behind. Thomas and Hannah's renewed friendship turned to romance rather quickly, and I would have enjoyed more of them getting to know each other again. It works well as a novella though, and inspired me add Cornwall to my travel bucket list!

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Review: The Flight of a Butterfly by Rachel Ward

Heidi Reads... The Flight of a Butterfly by Rachel Ward

My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it


Lucy Simpson just survived the worst day of her life. Rather than stick around to deal with the fallout of losing her accounting job and the betrayal of her longtime boyfriend, she makes a split-second decision to pull up roots and move to Hawaii.

She arrives with a suitcase, a reservation at a cheap hotel, and a whole lot of hope. Relieved to be an ocean away from her overbearing father, Lucy creates a list of experiences to help her explore what she really wants from life. Her new friends from the singles ward become her cheerleaders and help her cross items off the list one by one. As she does, she learns a little bit more about herself, about life and about love. But when a family emergency calls her home, will she be forced to choose between her old life and a new love?

My Review

I love Hawaii for the setting in a book, and this one was unique in that it showed the non-touristy part and some gritty situations that can be found in all parts of the world. It takes a lot of guts to up and move at a moment's notice, with no plans at the other end for housing or employment... either that or desperation. It's so out of character for Lucy, yet she perseveres and follows through with her new circumstances, even though it would be easier to run home. I liked learning about all the friends she made along the way, and thought it was interesting who she chose to be judgemental about; some cases were surprising. Her friendship that eventually developed into romance with Ben was my favorite part of the book, he was so patient with her. *Awesome first kiss* I appreciated that the main characters are members of the church I belong to, but was disappointed that there was little to no faith mentioned. I think it's too bad when authors avoid opportunities to share the faith of their characters which misrepresents how integral prayer and worship are in the real lives of the members of the church, as well as how we feel about God. In this book Lucy completely relied on herself instead of trusting God, and her interactions with the church were purely social. I could understand if there was a progression in her spiritual growth, but there really wasn't any, she just continued to struggle and basically ignore God. The main lesson she learned was to stop running from her problems and face her emotions.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

About the Author

Rachel grew up reading every book she could get her hands on and spending time with her cat. At least, that was the report in every annual Christmas letter. The humiliation was enough to spur her into action, and she began writing and she never stopped. Rachel studied English at Brigham Young University-Idaho and then wrote and blogged in between the births of her six children. She currently lives in West Jordan with her family, and while she no longer has a cat, she still reads every book she can get her hands on.

Review: Healing Hearts by Sarah M. Eden

Heidi Reads... Healing Hearts by Sarah M. Eden
My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it


Wyoming Territory, 1876

As the only doctor in the frontier town of Savage Wells, Gideon MacNamara knows his prospects for a bride are limited. The womenfolk in town are either too young, too old, or already spoken for. So, being a practical man, he decides to take advantage of the matchmaking service of the day—mail-order brides—and sends away for a woman with nursing experience.

When Miriam steps off the stagecoach in Savage Wells, she sees a bright future in front of her. But when the town—and Gideon—meets her, ready for a wedding, her excitement quickly turns to horror. Somehow Dr. MacNamara's message had gotten turned around. He didn’t want a nurse, he wanted a wife. When she refuses to marry him, she finds herself stranded in Savage Wells with some very unhappy townspeople.

But Gideon is not like the other men Miriam has met. Embarrassed by the misunderstanding, he offers her a job, and the two begin an awkward—and often humorous—dance of getting to know each other as they work to care for the people of their town. Romance blossoms between the two, but when a former medical associate of Miriam’s arrives in town, Gideon and the other townsfolk must rally around Miriam to protect her from a dangerous fate. Gideon and Miriam must decide if they are willing to risk their hearts for each other even as buried secrets are brought to light.

My Review

It was wonderful to return to the setting of the isolated Western town of Savage Wells! I quickly grew to love Miriam and Gideon, and enjoyed how they worked so well together as doctor and nurse. Miriam has major trust issues because of her past rejection from her family and the doctors that took advantage of her vulnerable circumstances. It was eye-opening to learn some of the history of asylums and made me thankful for the brave individuals who sacrificed and risked to expose the abuse. Gideon has been unlucky in love, but proves himself throughout the book that he is reliable and worthy of Miram's trust and affection. There are still several obstacles for them to overcome, especially when Miriam's secret come to light and an unwelcome visitor comes to town. I loved the loyalty the town had to Miriam and they way her new friends supported her during her trials. It was fun to have Paisley, Cade, and Hawk from the first book play significant roles in this second book, and I'm looking forward to more! (Fingers crossed) :)

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

Don't miss the first book in the Savage Wells series . . .

Heidi Reads... The Sheriffs of Savage Wells by Sarah M. Eden


He's the most fearsome sheriff in the West. A force to be reckoned with. The stuff of legend.

So is she. . . . May the best sheriff win.

Paisley Bell knows the eccentric people of Savage Wells. From the absentminded shopkeeper who always thinks she's been robbed to the young man who has returned shell-shocked from the war, Paisley has compassion for them all. When the sheriff up and leaves town, Paisley steps up and assumes the responsibility, partly because she loves the work, but also because she needs the income to take care of her sick father. So when the town council decides that the position of sheriff should really go to a man, Paisley finds herself fighting to prove that she's the perfect candidate for the job, even though she wears a skirt.

Cade O'Brien is heartily sick of shooting people. In his many years as a lawman, Cade has seen his share of blood and violence. So when he answers an advertisement for a sheriff job in the sleepy town of Savage Wells, he believes he's found the peace and quiet he's always desired. But when he discovers that his biggest competition for the job is a woman, he begins to question his decisions.

Tension between the two begins to sizzle when both Cade and Paisley realize the attraction they have for each other, but when Paisley's former beau shows up in town, along with a band of bank robbers, the blossoming relationship between the two sheriffs is tested. They will have to work together to thwart the bank robbers and keep the town safe.

Review: Brunch at Bittersweet Café by Carla Laureano

Heidi Reads... Brunch at Bittersweet Café by Carla Laureano

My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it


Baker and pastry chef Melody Johansson has always believed in finding the positive in every situation, but seven years after she moved to Denver, she can't deny that she's stuck in a rut. One relationship after another has ended in disaster, and her classical French training is being wasted on her night job in a mediocre chain bakery. Then the charming and handsome private pilot Justin Keller lands on the doorstep of her workplace in a snowstorm, and Melody feels like it's a sign that her luck is finally turning around.

Justin is intrigued by the lively bohemian baker, but the last thing he's looking for is a relationship. His own romantic failures have proven that the demands of his job are incompatible with meaningful connections, and he's already pledged his life savings to a new business venture across the country--an island air charter in Florida with his sister and brother-in-law.

Against their better judgment, Melody and Justin find themselves drawn together by their unconventional career choices and shared love of adventure. But when an unexpected windfall provides Melody with the chance to open her dream bakery-café in Denver with her best friend, chef Rachel Bishop, she's faced with an impossible choice: stay and put down roots with the people and place she's come to call home . . . or give it all up for the man she loves.

My Review

There are several elements in this book that make it stand out. The romance is always my favorite of course, but I also appreciated the focus on all types of relationship dynamics- family, friends, and co-workers. Melody's semi-estranged mother, her two well-meaning best friends, and Justin's sister and her husband all play important roles in the story. It was interesting to see the details involved in the food industry, and all the creativity and planning it takes to open a new restaurant. The descriptions of the food and desserts are divine, and almost convinces me that I need to become a foodie ;) I really enjoyed the chemistry between Melody and Justin, especially the adventure they go on in the mountains, but throughout the book their relationship is overshadowed by the temporary nature of their time together and each of their self-doubts in romance. There is a strong theme of God's influence in our lives and Melody and Justin both have their faith challenged with the situations they find themselves in. I assumed that there would be a happy ending, but Melody and Justin both go through so much on their way there that at times I was nervous that the book wouldn't end the way I hoped! Recommend to fans of contemporary romance and Christian fiction.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

Don't miss the first book in the Supper Club series . . .

Heidi Reads... the Saturday Night Supper Club by Carla Laureano


Denver chef Rachel Bishop has accomplished everything she’s dreamed and some things she never dared hope, like winning a James Beard award and heading up her own fine-dining restaurant. But when a targeted smear campaign causes her to be pushed out of the business by her partners, she vows to do whatever it takes to get her life back … even if that means joining forces with the man who inadvertently set the disaster in motion.

Essayist Alex Kanin never imagined his pointed editorial would go viral. Ironically, his attempt to highlight the pitfalls of online criticism has the opposite effect: it revives his own flagging career by destroying that of a perfect stranger. Plagued by guilt-fueled writer’s block, Alex vows to do whatever he can to repair the damage. He just doesn’t expect his interest in the beautiful chef to turn personal.

Alex agrees to help rebuild Rachel’s tarnished image by offering his connections and his home to host an exclusive pop-up dinner party targeted to Denver’s most influential citizens: the Saturday Night Supper Club. As they work together to make the project a success, Rachel begins to realize Alex is not the unfeeling opportunist she once thought he was, and that perhaps there’s life--and love--outside the pressure-cooker of her chosen career. But can she give up her lifelong goals without losing her identity as well?

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Book Tour, Review & Giveaway: An Alaskan Proposal by Beth Carpenter

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Heidi Reads... An Alaskan Proposal by Beth CarpenterAn Alaskan Proposal
(Northern Lights #4)

By Beth Carpenter
Contemporary Romance
Mass Market Paperback & ebook, 384 Pages
January 1st 2010 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Can he teach her survival skills—

without endangering his heart?

When Sabrina Bell taps Leith Jordan for a crash course in conquering the great Alaskan outdoors, he figures he’s on safe ground. They’re polar opposites and his spectacular home state’s just a pit stop for the hotshot fashionista. So no one’s more surprised than Leith when he starts falling for her. Now he’s a man with a plan: get Sabrina to fall in love with Alaska…and, hopefully, with him.


My Review

Another great book in the Northern Lights series! I really enjoyed the easy friendship that developed between Leith and Sabrina, although I didn't understand how they could keep their relationship casual once the kissing started. I loved the Alaskan setting and all the camping and exploring described. It made me want to pack up and escape to the mountains! Even though Sabrina begins inexperienced in the outdoors and more comfortable with high fashion, her genuine personality shone through as she was determined to gain the experience she needed to succeed. Her strength and compassion attracted Leith and even though he had issues with trust in committed relationships, he also valued the light and warmth she added to his life. The two dogs Tal and Boomer were full of personality and showed another example of how opposites could complement each other. There were some cameos of the characters from the previous books in the series which was fun, and I also liked Leith's sister Volta and niece Emma. A great cast of characters made this a well-rounded story.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions expressed in this review are my own)

Other Books in the Series

About the Author

Once upon a time ...

when Beth Carpenter was a little girl, she read everything she could get her hands on, and entertained herself on the school bus by making up stories in her head. Not a lot has changed. She's still consuming books like M&Ms, and spends her days creating happily-ever-afters for her imaginary friends.

She lives in Alaska and Arizona with her husband and an aggressively affectionate fifty-pound lap dog. She loves to hear from readers.
Tour Schedule

January 21st:
Baroness Book Trove
It's All About the Romance
Reading Is My SuperPower
January 22nd:
underneath the covers
Book by Book
Mythical Books
The Power of Words
January 23rd:
Reading On The Edge
Declarations of a Fangirl
Thoughts of a Blonde
Hearts & Scribbles
E-Romance News
January 24th:
Rockin' Book Reviews
Kimber Li
Heidi Reads...
My Life Loves and Passion
January 25th:
Becky on Books
Locks, Hooks and Books
January 26th:
Grand Finale

Tour Giveaway

1 winner will receive a book tote, a print copy of A GIFT HORSE by Beth Carpenter, and a $25 Amazon Gift Card

Prize open to US continental residents - If winner doesn’t have a US mailing address, the alternate prize is a $25 Amazon card and two e-books (A GIFT HORSE and THE ALASKAN CATCH).

Ends January 30, 2019

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