Wednesday, September 26, 2012

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Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Most Important Catch Blog Tour

The Most Important Catch
by Jaclyn M. Hawkes
Published March 2012
by Spirit Publishing
Paperback 291 pages
Rating: 4 stars

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

Run or die!

She knew too much, and she’d seen too much. And the police refused to help. Knowing that she was to be the next scheduled death, Kelly Campbell hid under head to toe black leather and a tinted motorcycle helmet and ran for her life.

When the weather turned cold, she turned south. She ended up in North Carolina, home to one of the most famed and eligible NFL football stars in the whole league; only she didn’t know that. She thought he was a businessman. Not being a huge fan, all she knew was that he was incredibly attractive, kind, generous, and that she was safe with him.

Or was she?

His brand of fame proved to be all but deadly, but his fame wasn’t nearly as lethal as his attraction. He kept her safe and protected. All except for her heart.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this book. I wasn't sure at first, when I read the synopsis. Not being a huge football fan,  I worried that football would take over the story, but it was really just a tiny portion of this great, clean romance.

Following the promptings of the spirit, a quick thinking Kelly was able to sneak away, when her life was in peril. She had discovered that the man she was dating, a doctor at the hospital where she worked, was not only selling prescription drugs illegally, but that he was also pushing through clinical trials too quickly, which had resulted in the deaths of several patients.

Not knowing where she was headed, or what she would do when she got there, Kelly road for days. She ran out of gas in the middle of nowhere, where she ran into Robby, a nice man who ended up hiring her to be a caretaker for his new home. Little did Kelly know, Robby was actually a famous NFL player who had women constantly vying for his attention.

A steady friendship grew between Robby and Kelly, and soon that friendship became more, but each was hiding secrets from the other, and those secrets might just be what keeps them apart in the end.

The sweet love story between Robby and Kelly was very enjoyable, and the added conflict of Kelly's attempts to stay hidden from her former boyfriend really kept me reading throughout the day. I didn't want to put the book down, but alas, my kids called me away at times, thank goodness for bedtime when I have a good book calling.

If you are looking for a sweet, clean LDS romance, grab a copy of The Most Important Catch by Jaclyn M. Hawkes. If you want to read more reviews of the fabulous book, check out the rest of the blog tour by clicking on the image below:

About the Author
Author bio: Jaclyn M. Hawkes grew up in Utah with 6 sisters, 4 brothers and any number of pets. (It was never boring!) She received a Bachelor’s degree, had a career, and traveled extensively before settling down to her life’s work of being the mother of four magnificent and sometimes challenging children. She loves shellfish, the outdoors, the youth, and hearing her children laugh. She and her fine husband, their family, and their sometimes very large pets, now live in a mountain valley in northern Utah, where it smells like heaven and kids still move sprinkler pipe.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in order to write the review. My opinion was not influenced by the free copy, I shared only my own, personal opinion.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Confession

There is no doubt that I enjoy reading...That is pretty obvious, considering the fact that almost all of my posts lately have been book reviews. But there is more, I think it is a sickness. I can't seem to read just one book at a time. I am usually in the middle of two, sometimes three different books. I can usually logically explain why, but it really does seem crazy at times.

Sometimes I read more than one because one of the books I am reading is a bit slower going, yet still enjoyable. Sometimes I just have to read something that I can breeze through in a half a day. I want to be sucked in and just escape for a few hours into someone else's story. So I will read a nice, quick book, and then go back to the other book that I have started.

Other times I am simply reading several at a time because I have one book downstairs and another on my night stand, and yet another that I am reading on our iPad (since I can read ebooks with the lights off and not disturb others who are trying to sleep...namely my husband).

So, right now I have started and I am actively reading two books, and I picked up a few others at the library that seem to be calling for me to dive between their pages. So, likely, in the morning,  I will be reading another one or two..Sure, it is a crazy way to read, but it works for me.

So tell me, am I alone? Am I the only one who has more than one books going at once?

Monday, April 09, 2012

Caller ID by Rachelle J. Christensen Blog Tour Stop

Caller ID
by Rachelle J. Christensen
 Published March 13, 2012
by Sweetwater Books
Paperback, 272 pages
ISBN 1599559900
Source: Publisher
Rating: 5 stars

When twenty-three-year-old Courtney Beckham is abducted near her home, the search turns up more than just a kidnapping crime. FBI agent Jason Edwards investigates the ten-million-dollar ransom and stumbles upon something he wasn't meant to find. When Courtney catches a glimpse of the caller ID in her kidnapper's home, what she sees turns her world upside down.

My Thoughts
I really liked Caller ID. Having read Christensen's previous book, Wrong Number , I hoped to see more of FBI agent Jason Edwards, and Caller ID gives me more! Courtney Beckham is the daughter of a wealthy developer, who has been given almost everything she wants. She has struggled with men, and just can't seem to find the right kind of guy. When off riding to clear her mind, she unwittingly stumbles on a marijuana crop and the men tending the illegal plants. She is kidnapped and taken to a cabin in the nearby mountains. While there she makes a discovery that sends her world spinning. Agent Jason Edwards is called in to help find the kidnapped Beckham and the two end up on an adventure that neither will ever forget.

The story line has multiple twists and turns. It seems that just when you have everything figured out, something changes and you have to re-think your theories.

If you are looking for an adventure, mystery and romance all mixed into one book, then Caller ID is a great choice!

About the Author

Rachelle was raised in a small farming town in Idaho, where she would often daydream and write stories in her head while working in the fields. She graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelors Degree in Psychology and a Minor in Music. Caller ID is her 2nd work of fiction (she has also written and non-fiction book entitled Lost Children: Coping With Miscarriage for Latter-Day Saints .) Learn more about Rachelle by visiting her website.

To celebrate the release of CALLER ID, Rachelle is hosting a contest for a new Ultra Flip Video Camcorder (4GB memory, Records 120 minutes Value $149.99) and other great prizes. You can enter to win between now and April 14, 2012. Winners will be announced and notified April 16, 2012.

 For how to enter, click here.

This review has been a part of a Cedar Fort blog tour to celebrate the release of this title. To read more reviews and visit the other stops along the tour, click the image below!

(Book cover image and Synopsis from Goodreads, author photo from author's website)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Lightning Tree by Sarah Dunster Book Blog Tour

Lightning Tree
by Sarah Dunster
Expected Publication- April 10, 2012
by Bonneville
Paperback, 384 pages
ISBN 1599559595
Source: ecopy from publisher
Rating: 4.5 Stars

Synopsis (from publisher)
After surviving the tragic deaths of her parents and baby sister and a harrowing trek across the plains to Utah, it’s no surprise that Maggie’s nights are plagued by nightmares.

 But after years of harsh treatment by her foster mother and sisters, and memories that seem to hint at an unthinkable crime, Maggie is forced to strike out on her own. To separate the truth from the dreams, Maggie faces a painful ordeal and learns that she’ll need to put her trust in those around her to survive. 

My Thoughts

I found this to be a very interesting book. Maggie is such a likeable heroine. She tries hard to do what is right; has realistic faults; makes mistakes and tries to learn from them.   I felt connected with Maggie and ached for her as she made painful discoveries about her past. The story progressed well and while it did not have the ending I expected, it ended well. There were many interesting twists to this story; events did not always progress as you would have expected, so it keeps the reader on their toes a bit. I really liked this aspect of the book and felt it helped to draw me into the story further.

Another interesting aspect of this story was its historical setting. We often find stories written of pioneers crossing the plains, but this story takes place in the early days of the Utah settlement, during the furor and backlash from the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Tension definitely runs deep throughout this tale, with fingers pointing in many directions and everybody talking, and yet not really talking about what truly happened.

If you would like to learn more, visit the book website found here.  You can also learn more about Sarah Dunster by visiting her website or blog.

This post has been a part of a blog tour organized by the publisher, Cedar Fort. Visit them online via their blog, facebook or twitter. Click the image below to find the rest of the blog stops along the tour!
Disclosure: I received a free ebook copy of this book in order to participate in this blog tour. The opinion above is 100% my own.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Darling Spring Dresses from Old Navy and Crowdtap

Thanks to Crowdtap and Old Navy,  my friend Lisa and I were able to sample the dresses available at our local store. We weren't sure what we would find, as neither of us were very familiar with the dresses available in seasons past. We had hoped to find some of the knit Maxi dresses we had found online during a pre-shopping online search, but unfortunately our local store did not have them in-stock. We did, however, find several fun dresses to try on. I almost selected this dress, as I love the blue and the fun ruffled neckline:
But after trying several dresses, I tried this one on:
When I grabbed it off the rack, I wasn't quite sure I would like it. I am usually more of a blue girl than pink, but it looked fun and summery, so I went for it. After trying it on, I was sold. It is darling and has a nice fit.

Lisa purchased this pretty dress:
 I think it was the first dress she tried on and it really looks beautiful on her (you will see in a minute  :) ).

Being concerned about modesty and the lack of sleeves on this (and most of the dresses we tried on), Lisa and I purchased these darling cropped, short sleeved sweaters to provide a little more coverage:

At only $15, these made the perfect additions to our dresses and will get much use in the future with other dresses!

Here we are in our dresses:
We both wore our dresses to church on Sunday and got so many compliments on them! I was even stopped by someone I didn't know to ask if I had purchased my dress at Old Navy. She had seen the dress on the rack, but was unsure about it. Now after seeing it, she wants to try it on! So fun.

Thanks Old Navy and Crowdtap for the opportunity to try these fun dresses.

Lisa and I both received a free dress as part of a Crowdtap Sample and Share program. Blogging about my experience was not a requirement of the Sample and Share program, but I wanted to share :)

Thursday, March 01, 2012

On Little Wings by Regina Sirois Blog Tour Stop

On Little Wings
by Regina Sirois
Published January 4th 2012 by Regina Sirois
Source: author
Rating: 5 stars

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
This is a story of the countless ways we get love wrong. And why, despite every disappointment, we keep fighting to get it right.

Jennifer must do the impossible – bring her mother home. When a family is torn apart by death, two sisters take violently divergent paths and the story of their family appears to end terribly and abruptly. Two decades later Jennifer never dreams that the photo she finds stuck between the pages of a neglected book will tear open a gaping wound to her mother’s secret past. Abandoning her comfortable life with her parents and best friend in the wheat fields of Nebraska, Jennifer’s quest for a hidden aunt leads her to the untamed coast of Maine where she struggles to understand why her mother lied to her for sixteen years.

Across the grey, rocky cove she meets Nathan Moore, the young, reluctant genius surrounded by women who need him to be brother, father, friend, provider, protector and now, first love. The stories, varied, hilarious, and heartbreaking, unfold to paint a striking mural of the shattered past. As Jennifer seeks to piece together her mother’s story, she inadvertently writes one for herself

 My take:

Honestly, I loved this book.  It had so much to it: great characters, beautiful language, scenery that makes you want to hop a flight to Maine right now, and a great story of love, not always conquering all but hope that it might. Sirois uses beautiful imagery to describe both the scenery and the emotions of her characters. But, beautiful language alone does not a good book make. The story of sisters, separated by fear, hate and misunderstanding drew me in. I wanted to see them come back together, but the years apart and the hatred that had been nursed in hearts seemed too much to overcome.

Jennifer is another story, she is discovering the joy and pain that comes with first love. When you don't know what the other person is thinking; do they care as much as you do? Sirois gives us a great understanding of how this really feels. It brought me back to my days in high school when I fought that same battle.

On a personal note, this book touched home. I grew up hearing of the beauty of Maine. I did visit once, when I was 18 months old, so all I have of that vacation are photos; no memories. My grandfather was born and raised in Maine. While somewhat faded, his Maine accent is one of the things I remember most about him. The reference in On Little Wings to the Maine accent brought memories of my late grandfather rushing to my mind. 

If you are looking for a book that will make you smile, laugh and maybe even shed a tear or two, this is a great one.

About the Author (from the Author's website, visit to find out more)

Regina Sirois is 90% reader and 10% writer, and as such, her loyalty lies with readers. She believes a book should do more than mildly entertain- it should change us. She graduated summa cum laude from Missouri State's Department of History and English and settled in the golden wheat fields of Kansas with her High School love. She is currently doing laundry (probably) and raising her two daughters. She fell in love the day she learned to read and cried the first time she did a word problem in math ("But it's not a problem..." sob, sob. "It's a story!"). In her debut novel, "On Little Wings," Regina Sirois holds nothing back as she dares to make us believe.

This post is a stop in a blog tour for this title. Learn more about this and other tours by clicking on the image below: