Book Connections

Eyes On These Romantic Suspense Books

These are all books I want to read in 2021. As I was sorting books out that I want to read I realised these ones all have a large element of romantic suspense. A genre I enjoy.

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At the very top of my list is State of Affairs. This is a “new” series by Marie Force but with her characters all from her Fatal series – which is romantic suspense. It’s probably my top addictive series read. These books have plenty of police procedural, murder and other horrible things happening. But as well it is so full of family and feel good aspects.

I pre-ordered this book on Kindle soon as I finished the last book in the Fatal series. April 20th. Don’t care what I will be in the middle of reading I’ll stop and read this one straight away.

bookcover Mary Kay Andrews always writes a good story and I like to either read or listen to them. I’ve only just read her last one, but if I’ve got it then I can pick it up when I need this kind of  read. This one seems to involve a murder, someone on the run, the sister and her young niece. Escaping the murderer it seems. Has enough promise there.

book cover Legacy  publishes in May and most likely needs no introduction. It will be romantic suspense as well. May listen to this on audiobook. Will see who the narrator is.

book coverAnother series I really like. #3 in the Sacramento series.Say Goodbye.  It will be a continuing story of a cult group and the FBI group that are working to find and end it. These books are always very fast moving and take place over a short time. There are a lot of pages but they go so fast. This one doesn’t come out to August. But it will be an automatic buy!

book coverThis one came out in December 2020 and is set in Alaska where a young girl is accused wrongly of murder. It is #1 in a series so a good place to begin. I haven’t read much Christina Dodd, only one other I think. So looking forward to finding out if I get hooked. I’ll know very soon because this one just came in from the library and I plan to read it very soon.

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Month in Review

February Reading Wrap

Total books read this month: 10

New to me authors:

Heather Webber.      Helen Moffett

Eileen McNamara.    Barack Obama

Top Book for February

Review for this book will up in next day or two.

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Looking forward to reading in March

Review of Reading Goals 2021

GR Challenge : 6 ahead.

Enjoyment v Should: Definitely enjoyment on all the above books this month.

Recommendations: I am keeping track, I don’t add many recommendations but usually follow up on those I am really interested in.

TBR/Library portion: 3 of the 10 were library books.  5 books of the 10 were off my own TBR shelf.  2 were review books.

Any buying: Well yes I did buy a couple. One the latest Gary D Schmidt book and Surviving Savannah by Patti Callahan. I guess that’s restrained. Although I do feel a spree coming on!

Main Reading Goal for March.

Find a book with a diary embedded in it somewhere and read it. I am doing one semi challenge this year in Emilie Richard’s readers group on Facebook. It’s very low key. Any suggestions gratefully received, I can think of some but I’ve read them already!

Linking up with Nicole from FeedYourFiction Addiction.

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#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? March 1st.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Well here we are in March, hope you are all okay. It is great to be able to visit around readers’ blogs to see what you are doing and how you are.

I am fine, finding our summer weather just a tad hot for me! Covid wise it’s fine although when we find a case everyone in the country has levels upped. So on Saturday night an alert on my phone told me we were going to L2 where I am which means no groups bigger than a 100. So that cut church out for Sunday as we just don’t have it when we go to L2. In Auckland they are in L3 because that is where the breakout is. They have no school, work at home etc. I guess most of you are familiar with that. It is at this stage only for 7 days. Next Sunday might find me at church again!!

What I read last week:

What I am reading now:

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And just starting to listen to

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Up next:

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Last Week’s Posts

Garden Books

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Book Connections

Garden Books.

I am not a gardener although there are plenty in my family who are and my forebears were gardeners too. Most of my garden is very dry at present, and I do have a small veggie garden. Love picking from that.

There have been quite a few books I’ve read that have almost at centre stage – a garden.

book cover The Unfinished Garden is the author’s debut novel and the only one I hadn’t read of hers until now. Tilly the main woman character is into gardens and garden and loves it. Both in North Carolina where she has a business and in her home in England where she spends some time as well. Then there is James who wants Tilly’s help with a garden for his place. He has OCD and can’t put his hands near the earth. This book I think is titled The Unfinished Garden because a garden is never finished. How true!  Barbara Claypole White always presents a very compassionate stance towards her characters with mental illness and I always love her knowledge and the help she provides her readers to take these people into their hearts.

book coverA Home Like Ours also has a special Australian garden at its centre. It’s very important and brings a community together. My review for this one will be up soon. It was a 5 star read for me.

book coverThis was an engrossing tale, told from a few different viewpoints and times. The story and mystery unfold – the reader has enough clues to see what has happened before the characters. Its both sad and and uplifting. What a complicated family! It involves a kind of secret garden.

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The Garden of Happy Endings  involves sisters and a community garden in a poor part of town. I loved this story, so thoughtful and enjoyable. Loved the  women and each of their stories. Their search and exploration of what makes them happy was important. I especially appreciated Elsa’s journey – her spiritual one and her search for her partner in life. Felt very real and authentic.

book coverThe Garden of Small Beginnings by Abbi Waxman. Witty and insightful. Wonderful group of characters. Two sisters, well two sets of sisters who made me laugh and at times sad. A group of people who come together around a gardening project and form what I think will be lasting friendships. Tons of good hints about gardening.

There is another book I’ll be wanting to read… The Last Garden in England by Julia Kelly which comes well recommended.

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Review

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Hope you are all okay and that those of you who have had snow and cold that now it is beginning to improve.

What I read last week:

What I am reading now:

#6 in my current quilting cozy series that I am reading.

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About two thirds of the way through A Promised Land. I must admit it is rather a little beyond me at times as there is so much government USA stuff.

Up next:

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Book Connections

Romance Books : Reading Joy.

I was once a very avid romance reader, although now its women’s fiction that has taken its place. I happen to like a happy ending kind of book, and at least a promise of happiness.

These are some of my favourite contemporary books that  I have copies of sitting on my shelf, mostly from the past. I still read the occasional recent romance but nothing that really fully satisfies.

Since its February and I missed out on the Valentine theme last week I thought I’d take it up this week.

book coverLong before Virgin River became a Netflix series I had read Virgin River and… all the books that followed. Quite a few as three came out every year for awhile. Robyn Carr writes a good story and there was lots of romance along the way.First Lady

I’ve also read all Susan Elizabeth Phillips books, every single one of them. I think First Lady would be my favourite. The First Lady escapes and journeys around the country with a Dad and two daughters in a motor home. SEP does have a new romance out this year and of course I’ll buy and read it!

book cover I loved all Judith McNaught’s books, and this is one of her contemporary romances. It’s been sitting on my shelf for years along with a number of others written by her. I have no idea now about it so should really reread it to see if I still love it.

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Well this is one by Jessica Bird.  Later on she writes as J. R. Ward. I found all her Jessica Bird books and loved them. Another one I should reread to see how I feel about it now. I think this was her debut book, according to someone on GR. I am not sure but anyway I have them and they still sit on my shelves.

book cover This one is more recent and is YA and contemporary romance. K. A. Tucker has hooked me with a number of her books and I loved this one when I read it in 2019. I have to admit I could easily read it again now, and its why I saved it on my shelf.

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Review

Love at First. Kate Clayborn

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Published: Kensington

Date: February 23rd 2021

Source: NetGalley

Sixteen years ago, a teenaged Will Sterling saw—or rather, heard—the girl of his dreams. Standing beneath an apartment building balcony, he shared a perfect moment with a lovely, warm-voiced stranger. It’s a memory that’s never faded, though he’s put so much of his past behind him. Now an unexpected inheritance has brought Will back to that same address, where he plans to offload his new property and get back to his regular life as an overworked doctor. Instead, he encounters a woman, two balconies above, who’s uncannily familiar . . .

No matter how surprised Nora Clarke is by her reaction to handsome, curious Will, or the whispered pre-dawn conversations they share, she won’t let his plans ruin her quirky, close-knit building. Bound by her loyalty to her adored grandmother, she sets out to foil his efforts with a little light sabotage. But beneath the surface of their feud is an undeniable connection. A balcony, a star-crossed couple, a fateful meeting—maybe it’s the kind of story that can’t work out in the end. Or maybe, it’s the perfect second chance . . .

Love at First by Kate Clayborn is a delightful story of love and friendship and found family.

It has a bunch of quirky characters who share an apartment block and who look out for each other. Into this group Will finds himself when his uncle leaves him his unit  apartment. Will has only been there once before when his uncle rejected him. So of course Will wants to do nothing more than clean the place up and let it. However… that’s not accounting for the fact that the girl/woman he saw on that first visit is still there.

What follows is a delightful story of two people who have been wounded by their upbringing, where they had learned certain things about life, that maybe no longer stood them in good stead. It was delightful to see them changing and growing and finding their way.

One of my favorite characters was Will’s boss, Gerald. He too undergoes change and finds his way in life and love in a heart warming vulnerable way.  

This book shows us what it’s like to live with a diverse group and be accepting and caring. To find love in all its facets.

Rating: 4 out of 5.
#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Hope you week is going well. We are starting another one, may it bring us all good reads! One of my sisters visited a book shop recently and decided she felt like reading a book. Not having read for a long time she perused the shelves and alighted on The Seven Sisters by Lucinda Riley. Because as she told me we are seven girls in our family.

Later that week her five year old grand daughter saw her reading and said to her “Nanny you should really be using a bookmark”.  She then made her a very glamorous one of a blue craft feather and piece of card and lovely sticker which Anne is using. I was very delighted with Miss Five Year Old!

What I read last week:

What I am reading now:

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And I am about half way in listening to Barack Obama’s book! It’s a marathon!

Up next:

This is a backlist book, I’ve been wanting to read. So off the shelf it comes.

 

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Book Connections

Looking at 2021 Books March to April.

I like to look ahead to books I want to read, when they are publishing  and whether I’ll buy or reserve them at the library. I know I said I’ll buy less books this year, but it could work the other way!

These are just five I have in my sights, however I have more!! I love checking out books to be published by authors I love!

book coverThe Summer of Lost and Found is another book in Mary Alice Monroe’s Rutledge family and the sea turtles of course. I see this one acknowledges the coronavirus which is interesting. I will definitely want to read it.   May publication.

book cover I’ve become a fan of Viola Shipman’s books and so of course The Clover Girls will be an automatic read. It seems to be about four girls/women and their friendship.  May publication as well.

book coverAnother automatic read and it looks like this one will be great too, with it’s exploration of family what happens to embryo’s that are ‘abandoned’ because the mother has died. Even better Under Southern Skies publishes in April for audio and Kindle. Haven’t decided which format yet.

book coverSurviving Savannah is an exploration of the ship Pulaski and a family that boarded it. It seems a couple may have survived. History professor Everly Winthrop hopefully gets to discover more. And the reader of course as well! Publishes March. This one I have pre-ordered.

book coverEven though this is partially set in WW11 I can’t pass it by. Looks like a dual time line. It appears to have grief and resilience mixed in there, and I am sure lessons to be learned. Besides it’s written by Karen White!  Publishes in April.

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Review

The Vineyard at Painted Moon. Susan Mallery

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Set in the vineyards of the north west part of the USA, The Vineyard of Painted Moon introduces us to the important roles of wine producing. Chief among them is the winemaker and in this case this would be Mackenzie Dienes and she works for her husband’s family business. And… she is really good at her job, passionate to be precise.

The family? Well there is Rhys her husband, and his sisters Lori, Stephanie and Four! At the centre of all the action is the matriarch Barbara. Some of these characters are likeable and some not so much. The story is set off by a lovely man proposing to Barbara and giving her a beautiful ring. They look so in love. It sets in play for some of the characters the realisation that they are not living either truthful or satisfying lives. Some way through the book it clicked with me that Bruno who first appears at the vineyards Summer Solstice party, we have met before in another story.

I loved the choices Mackenzie made along the way. She had a lot to deal with. The family is the only one she knows, she has no family of her own. Stephanie is her best friend, she is divorced and struggling rather in life to find passion and meaning.  

Barbara is something else, its a wonder all her children are even as sane as they are. She is a controlling woman, and doesn’t seem to know much about unconditional love. Her son Rhys I couldn’t make sense of. We didn’t see into his mind but could only judge him by what he says and does. I was left feeling sad for him.

I don’t want to give the plot away. Don’t read the blurb before you start this, go straight in, which as it happens I did, so even the beginning spoilers I didn’t have. I picked this book up when I was just not finding reading engaging. 

The Vineyard at Painted Moon soon picked me up out of that slump and I loved every minute of the book, I kept wanting more and more.  The challenges the characters faced, the plot the final epilogue all my kind of read.

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Rating: 5 out of 5.