Review

Jackson – Eternity Springs:The McBrides of Texas

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Published: St Martin’s Press
Date: 25th June 2019
Source: Publicity – St Martin’s Press

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Emily March is branching out of Eternity Springs into Redemption – Texas. It seems that this is the first in a trilogy, and its Jackson’s story. However his two cousins Boone and Tucker look like they will have their day in the sun.

The two communities are well linked, and there was some inter linking of the two towns that was very pleasant.  The part that amused me the most was that we see a slightly different side to Celeste – the all knowing angel of Eternity Springs. Here in Redemption her cousin Angelica is all set to oversee the Inn that Jackson and his brothers establish. Angelica is very into dented halos and imperfection and I just loved her dress sense.

Jackson is wounded – his ex wife has every excuse under the sky to prevent him from being with their daughter Haley. It breaks his heart. He has lost his passion for life and most especially his great love of music. Will he ever regain it back?

Caroline the heroine of the story is someone who has had to stand strong. She has lost the love of her life and now must start a new chapter.  And she does that beautifully by deciding she wants to open an independent bookshop. Well who can argue with that? And I noted it has a quilt shop right next to it. I so want to visit Redemption!

From half way through this book it began to move along at a great pace with enough “flies in the ointment” to keep things interesting. It reeled me in. I guess I’ll be back for more! And I am just noticing the cover perfectly fits the book.

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Review

The Christmas Wishing Tree by Emily March

book coverPublished: St Martin’s Press
Date: 25th September 2018
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 320
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

Rating 4.5 stars
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A man who loves adventure and the open sea, Devin Murphy returns for a short Christmas trip to his small hometown of Eternity Springs. Immersed in the joy and magic of the holiday season all around him, he doesn’t hesitate to play along when a young boy phones Santa to ask for a very special wish. Devin never guesses that a wrong number has the potential to make everything in his life so right.

Jenna Stockton adopted Reilly when he needed a mother and she intends to keep him safe. A small town across the country called Eternity Springs seems like a good place to hide from their past without any complications —until sexy Santa himself discovers her secrets. When Devin proposes a daring plan to face down the danger together and defeat it once and for all, she is tempted. Maybe Devin really is capable of making wishes come true? Perhaps in a Christmas wish they’ll both find the miracle they’ve been looking for all along…

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The Christmas Wishing Tree was a delightful read. I always love returning to Eternity Springs, and this time I was hooked by the tension engendered from what Devin might do. Would he remain in Australia or fit in with a special person and live in Eternity Springs?

Jenna and her son Reilly are being harassed quite seriously by a stalker, and after some nasty experiences they have ended up in Eternity Springs. And of course that’s the right place to come to when you are hurting. Celeste for a start will have something up her sleeve and there is a whole arsenal of very capable people who can look into this matter.

I enjoyed the characters, Devin of course is as soft as marshmellow – when it counts and Jenna is such a great mother. Reilly is delightful and his journey of discovering all about how Christmas counts and what its all about is perfect.

I loved the humor, as well as the range of emotions the story evoked in me. It was full of beloved characters from Eternity Springs, yet easily could be picked up as a stand alone.

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Review

The First Kiss of Spring by Emily March

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Published:  St Martin’s Press
Date:  27th February 2018
Format:  e-ARC
Pages: 368
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source:  Publicity via NetGalley

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Goal-oriented and gorgeous, Caitlin Timberlake’s dreams took her to the top of the corporate ladder in New York City. Now years later, her goals have changed. She wants to come home to Eternity Springs and build a business and a family of her own—with the new man in town. So what if sexy mechanic Josh Tarkington wants nothing more than a fling? Caitlin is a patient woman who knows how to work hard and strategize to win what she desires. She desires Josh. Unfortunately, he has other plans.

Josh craves Caitlin and all she has to offer. However, he is a man with secrets. He has worked hard to overcome his tragic past, but he’s afraid to risk having a future because he knows trouble is never very far away. When a selfless act brings that trouble to his door, he stands to lose everything he cares about—including Caitlin. Will her love and the healing magic of Eternity Springs be enough to save him?

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The worst thing about a book I am enjoying is…. that it finishes! And much as I rue it, that’s it! I have to accept I have to leave the world that I have been enjoying and come back to reality.

First Kiss of Spring takes place in Eternity Springs, the place where so many people come to heal – and therefore when that is done, there are many well rounded, healthy families living there, plying their interesting trades and supporting each other.

Josh Tarkington has come here, he is a talented mechanic and has set up his own business. However he has a back story and we gradually learn that story as each chapter starts with an entry in his journal. Josh has had it hard, while some might think he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth, that sure had a very dark lining. But… he has already fought many of his demons and while he doesn’t trust himself altogether, he really should. And he has certainly taken on board more wisdom than he realises from all the friendly people who have shared their learnings from the gently hand of Celeste – the local wise angel.

Caitlin Timberlake has returned home, she was a talented designer of homeware, but that no longer fulfils her, she has plans to open a new business in Eternity Springs. She is a little afraid of disappointing her mother, with this change of plan, but… her mother seems to have something else worrying her. And the intuitive Caitlin is picking up the vibes that all is not well in her family.  Meanwhile she is really falling for Josh and his little dog Penny.

This is another delightful story in the Eternity Springs series – #14 actually, and easily can be read as a stand alone although personally I am happy to say I have read and enjoyed all 14!  If you like small town, interesting characters, plenty happening then most likely you’d enjoy this one too.

Review

A Stardance Summer. Emily March

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Published: St Martin’s Press
Date: 27th June 2017
Format:e-ARC
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Rating:
4 stars                   Add to Goodreads

Brick Callahan enjoys every minute of chaos at his campground, Stardance Ranch, especially after the Tornado Alleycats arrive for an extended summer stay. The members of the all-female glamorous camping club are primarily seniors—active and adventurous, friendly and fun. But when he discovers Liliana Howe frolicking with the glamping grannies in a late night skinny-dipping session, he fears he’s in for a summer of trouble. Because his best friend’s kid sister has grown up to be drop-dead gorgeous.

Betrayed by those she trusted, Lili decides she’s put her career first for too long. She sells her practical sedan, buys a travel trailer, and heads to Eternity Springs for a summer of rest, relaxation, and reassessment as the newest member of the Alleycats. The last person she expects to find running an RV resort is her high school crush. Their undeniable mutual attraction is a reminder that life is full of surprises. But when the past comes calling, will their summer romance stand the test of time?

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As I marked Stardance Summer by Emily March on Goodreads as currently reading, I noticed it was #13 in the series. How did we get that far in this romantic series I love so much. The time has sped by. These books are an auto read for me, and I love every visit to Eternity Springs where the inimitable Celeste, the ‘angel’ watches over all – especially would be couples, who need a little push and shove to find themselves, heal and reach out to true love.
This time it is Liliana who flees to Eternity Springs because she has struck trouble in her home town and she sure is hurting from it. She joins a feisty group of women out to have a good time, led by Patsy, in a way not dissimilar to the wonderful Celeste in her spirit and ways of life. 
Lilana walks right into the camp of Brick Callahan ( and don’t get me going on the Callahan men, omg – I love that gang).  It’s a bit of a shock for Lili, she sets eyes on Brick and realises she has known him as the boy next door, many years ago when he was Mark and her brother’s best friend. And… her secret love. He was very good to her but well she still wasn’t allowed into their tree house.
Along the way as these two meet up and explore their relationship now, we get to reacquaint ourselves with many of the beloved characters in this town. If you are new to the series you don’t have to have read previous books, they all stand alone, however every story is such fun.  Many of them join with Celeste to put the screws on Brick when he is following the path all Callahan men seem prone to take, as I said I just love them.
Another heart warming, delightful read and visit to Eternity Springs. One of those small towns you really wish existed and you could visit… or live!

Emily March is the New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty novels, including the critically acclaimed Eternity Springs series. Publishers Weekly calls March a “master of delightful banter,” and her heartwarming, emotionally charged stories have been named to Best of the Year lists by Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Romance Writers of America. A graduate of Texas A&M University, Emily is an avid fan of Aggie sports and her recipe for jalapeño relish has made her a tailgating legend.

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Review

Christmas in Eternity Springs Emily March

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Published: HQN
Date: October 4th 2016
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 336
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Rating
4.5 stars                   Add to Goodreads

After a devastating betrayal, Claire Branham packs up the pieces of her life, along with a twenty-million-dollar secret, and moves to Eternity Springs. She opens a specialty shop—Forever Christmas—and, with the help of a surprise romance with the town’s sexy new handyman, Claire’s heart begins to heal. Until her past comes knocking…

Jax Lancaster never questioned the need to abandon his career as a Navy submariner in order to care for his young son in the wake of his ex-wife’s death. Desperate to help with this loss, Jax straps on a tool belt to give Nicholas the one thing he wants: A life in Eternity Springs. What Jax never expected to find a second chance at love with a fascinating woman for whom Christmas has become a business. But when the truth about Claire threatens their newfound happiness, can Jax prove to her that in Eternity Springs, the spirit of Christmas is real. . .and will last a lifetime?

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Emily March again delighted me with another story set in Eternity Springs, her town in Colorado, where Celeste, the town angel, over sees and facilitates unobtrusively the healing of many a broken heart and person.
Christmas in Eternity Springs is #12 in the series, but don’t let that put you off. This can easily be read as a stand alone. However I have read them all and loved every minute of it.
This is partly the story of Nicholas, a little boy traumatised by an accident that has left him afraid of all things Christmas. We actually met him in the previous book where he overcame a fear or two. When he and his Dad pass through Eternity Springs they meet up with the gorgeous red head, Claire. Jax, Nicholas’ dad, is entranced at the first meeting.
However like many of the people who wind up in Eternity Springs they both have wounds and places that need healing. Claire has been taken for a ride by a scoundrel, and so she is leery of all things men. She no longer trusts and believes. As well, she has issues with Christmas because of previous experiences. She has some hidden talents and a secret that haunts her. Facing her dislike of Christmas she has opened a town store called Forever Christmas.
Jax is just re-establishing himself with Nicholas, he has been a navy Dad and so absent a lot. He is finding his way into fatherhood and a new life outside the navy. He has been burnt in his relationship with his previous wife – Nicholas’ mother. Her family was wealthy and he felt somewhat threatened as well. He won’t make the mistake of becoming involved with someone who has more money than him.
While this is a Christmas story it really tracks through the months leading up to Christmas, so perfect for reading now. If you feel a little blah about this festive time, this is a great read for you to renew your belief and love. If you love the season then it will just underline for you what the spirit of the season is all about.
Review

Reunion Pass. Emily March

Reunion Pass book cover

Published: St Martin’s Press
Date: April 5th 2016
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 336
Genre: Romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Rating:
5 stars                 Add to Goodreads

Six years ago, Chase Timberlake bought an engagement ring for his high school sweetheart Lori Reese. Then … life happened. Chase’s adventure photography career took off, Lori’s dream of getting into veterinary school came true, and their happily ever after never came to pass.

When Chase’s jet-setting life takes a tragic turn, he returns to Eternity Springs a damaged man. Who better to help mend his spirit than the woman who has dedicated her life to healing broken wings? Long summer days spent together rekindles the love that never died and Chase dares to dream of a future he’d thought lost. But Lori can’t help but wonder whether this high-flying man really wants a small-town girl with roots sunk deep into the Colorado Rockies. Can she and Chase turn back the hands of time and pick up where they left off — and give forever a chance?

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Reunion Pass – #11 in the Eternity Springs series and every bit as good as the first one and all those that followed. I have often wondered what went wrong for Lori and Chase, both such wonderful young people. Now some years on we meet up again and find out the full story.
I found I didn’t want to put this story down, it drew me in right from the beginning. I just totally loved it all. We get to see Lori now all grown up and ready to take on her new professional role. We see Chase with a different girl and about to get married. 
Chase has become a world adventurer, and his girlfriend Lana a TV reality star on an adventure TV series. They enjoy taking risky adventures, however when a snarky demand goes very badly wrong things sure take a twist. It is a very topical happening in today’s world, and with a few brush strokes  from Emily March’s pen and my own imagination – I am able to see the full horror of it. 
I loved our revisits with some of the other families of Eternity Springs, and of course Celeste is still active and intuitively where she needs to be, to spread her hope and faith in people and outcomes. Healing comes gradually for Chase – just when his family is beginning to despair. The way to healing is perfect and I just loved those additions to the story. Don’t want to spoil it here so not mentioning it.
While this is part of a series it could be read as a  stand alone, however every book in this series is excellent and I highly recommend every single one of them. All outstanding. 
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Heartsong Cottage. Emily March

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Heartsong Cottage
Emily March
Published: St Martin’s Press
Date: November 3rd 2015
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 320
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
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Heartsong Cottage is # 10 in the Eternity Springs series by Emily March. Could you read it as a stand alone – of course, but why would you when there are just so many wonderfully heartwarming stories in the series.

This time its the turn of Daniel Garrett – he had a small part to play in a previous book when he found Holly the little girl that belongs to Hope from Miracle Road #7 in the series. His speciality is tracking down lost children. And it’s usually not a happy result so he has a special place in his heart for Holly. Usually he sees the evil side of life as he brings home dead bodies. He has a special reason for doing this difficult work, involving his son’s abduction and murder and his wife’s suicide. Hope says of Daniel “He has the heart of a warrior and the dedication of a knight in shining armor. But he’s also the loneliest man I’ve known.”

Shannon O’Toole runs the local pub in Eternity Springs and has just finished renovating the beautiful small home of Heartsong Cottage.  However she has secrets hidden in her past, secrets that keep her on edge and in fear. She is a strong loving woman but even she can only cope with so much.

Daniel and Shannon connect and as they do so in many ways their healing begins, hope begins to replace fear and evil. Darkness recedes somewhat as the warmth of love and friendship blossoms. In Eternity Springs there is a strong community of friendship that bonds the town folk, and when trouble comes visiting they’re a formidable team. Add in some of the Callahans from Brazos Bend and strength is added to strength. And on top of that there is the angel/woman Celeste who is always there at the right time with her support, encouragement and healing presence.

The story moves along at a good pace, with plenty of action, there are times of conflict and strong feelings on the part of the characters, that has them acting out before thinking things through. There is much sadness and heartache alongside healing and hope.

If you like books about friendship, strong community bonds and books that are about second chances, healing and hope then this is one for you. And one that will keep you on the edge of your seat to the very end.

This story does take place around Christmas but it’s not really a Christmas story as such, this is the perfect time of the year to read this book!

4.5 stars
Review

Teardrop Lane. Emily March

Teardrop Lane
Emily March
Published: Ballantine Books
Date: 27th January 2015
Format: e-ARC
Pages: 336
Genre: Contemporary romance
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
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Town physician Rose Anderson hides a well of sadness behind her cheerful and capable professionalism. Heartbreak has only reinforced her belief that marriage and children aren’t in her future. Yet she’s a woman with a pulse—and when sexy, brooding artist Hunt Cicero shows up at her office with his young nephew, the sheer physical attraction he ignites in her is both exciting and unsettling.

Hunt has an artist’s passionate temperament and a bachelor’s lifestyle. So when he becomes guardian to his sister’s children, he’s riddled with conflict—and in way over his head. Without Rose and her warm maternal instincts, he’d be lost. Still, she’s a woman who guards her own heart, and he’s a novice when it comes to commitment. Can the healing magic of Eternity Springs shine on this patchwork family and allow Hunt and Rose to trust that love is the fabric holding them together?

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Teardrop Lane by Emily March is #9 in her Eternity Springs series.  I have followed this series with eager anticipation as each book has been published. Books that explore the story of healing and love for the two main characters.

Rose and Cicero had already been introduced in previous books so it was easy to pick up with their lives and those of their friends and relations.  Both of them have stories from their childhood and early adult years that had wounded them. Yet they have grown into gifted, creative adults.  Rose is a caring and competent physician, Cicero a gifted, passionate artist crafting exquisite works of art  with glass blowing.  He learns that Gabi Romano, his apprentice, has entered his work in a competition, that could see him winning a prestigious award, it he can come up with a piece of art that embodies a stanza of poetry form the poet Emily Dickinson about hope.  This turns out to be  a significant part of the story, providing many a crisis and numerous points of growth for Cicero.

The first half of the book moved slowly as the relationship between Rose and Cicero developed.  I thought it was okay but I was a little disappointed – I was wanting a little more ‘explosion’.  Then at about half way through – wham, things picked up and I was fully hooked.  There are challenges that confront both Cicero and Rose, things happen and their worst fears and anxieties are aroused.  While there was fear and tension present, I loved how they managed to work their way through with challenging conversations that established trust and hope.

I loved the four children who come to stay with Cicero, those of his sister who died from cancer.  She had left the custody to her dead husband’s sister and husband.  They had decided to put them in foster care because they were expecting their own first child and it was all too much.  It might have been all to much for Cicero too, but he loved those children and all of Eternity Springs came out to support him as they do.  Celeste had again her own little delightful input, and I had almost forgotten her usual last little act until it happened too for Rose and Cicero.  So deserved.  

When I had reached 99% of the story I guessed I was coming to that dreaded end.  And it wasn’t quite turning out as I had hoped.  It was good – but not perfect for the characters and what my heart hoped for.  However there were still surprises to be had in the 1%! 

Another excellent, rewarding story about the characters of Eternity Springs.  
4.5 stars