May 27, 2019

Review: Murder in the City of Liberty by Rachel McMillan

Ah, yes. And Rachel McMillan does it again! I will freely admit that I picked up this story because of Hamish. And he is as delightful as ever! While mysteries aren't usually my first choice of genre, for Ms. McMillan and Hamish I am willing to make an exception. Because what adventures doth await the one who is willing to journey alongside of these characters! :)

The characters are certainly worth getting to know, yet half of my enjoyment of this story also came from the clear love of the era and the city that Ms. McMillan has. It's like finding yourself inside one of those noir-type movies of old. Where every little description of alleyways and outfits just draw you in further, along with all the details lovingly scattered about throughout the chapters. The atmospheric feel of the story is quite a lot of fun.

I will have to admit that Reggie frustrated me several times. I just wanted to make her be honest with herself! And stop hurting my poor Hamish. But since she does finally learn to understand her own heart, I can forgive her. :) And Nate! I couldn't believe where his part of the story took him. What a lot of uneasiness followed by glorious bliss! Just you read and find out for yourself, friends.

Mystery! Adventure! Romance! And Luca. Every bit of happiness is always underscored with reminders of Luca and all the uncertainty he tends to bring to everyone. I'll just be over here anxiously waiting for the next book of the series in order to find out more about him! Because he's most certainly a curious one. So you should run out and pick this one up, reader friends. You know you want to be part of all the fun too! :)

**I received a complimentary copy via Netgalley. All opinions expressed are my own.

Hamish was following the story so intently, Reggie's appearance startled his glasses down his nose.

May 13, 2019

Review: The Printed Letter Bookshop by Katherine Reay

Seriously. How does Katherine Reay write such perfection every time?! Once again, this particular story and these particular characters gripped my heart from page one and refused to let me have it back until I came to the final pages. Every character, every interaction, every heartache, every uncertainty, every joy, I was right there with them for everything. And my poor heart lost pieces of itself while finding pieces of itself all at the same time! Like I said, Ms. Reay just has a gift of writing characters and their respective journeys that resonate with me.

The three women at the center of this story are far from perfect. That's what makes them so unforgettable. They are real people with real heartache and pain. They are grieving, having just lost an amazing woman who was important to each of them for differing reasons. As Madeleine, Janet, and Clair slowly begin moving forward from that point of loss and grief, they stumble through figuring out how to do life on this side of things. It's hard, it's messy, and they all make a lot of mistakes. But it's not perfection I was looking for when I began this story, it was the journey they took. Watching these women, and the people in the lives, as they circle and spin in myriads of doubt and confusion, yet somehow, little by little, as they begin to see the light and the hope that's been waiting for them to discover's beautiful. Yes, it is messy, but it's beautiful. And it completely connected with me!

Like I said, Ms. Reay always seems to have a knack of understanding parts of my heart and then writing characters around that, but so much of the lostness inside each of these ladies felt just like mine! For all the chaos, there is a lot of quiet and piece by piece these women begin finding parts of themselves they'd forgotten all about.

Being the lover of stories that I am (and a HUGE fan of Ms. Reay's! :), I knew I'd enjoy this story before I even began it. But I underestimated Ms. Reay's ability to speak such truths in such gentle and heart-tugging ways. From the bookshop that I wish actually existed so I could go visit and maybe stay forever, to the characters who became my friends, to the sweet bits of romance that entwines its way through the story, to the loveliness that filters through every word and sentence in every chapter, this little book is full of delight and charm. I fell in love and refuse to go back to life without this heart-satisfying story in it!

I could, doubtless, gush on for paragraphs more, but I will leave you with this. Go read it. As soon as you are able you download it or drive to a bookshop of your own and buy it and bring it home. Or go to your local library and borrow it! Because you need this story in your life, friends. Trust me. You'll thank me later. :)

**I received a copy from Netgalley and Thomas Nelson. All opinions are my own.

May 8, 2019

Review: To Best the Boys by Mary Weber

Well. What a wild ride! From start to finish Ms. Weber certainly kept me on my toes. And I am not complaining either. Adventure, romance, and awesome characters, what's not to like?! :) I was swept up from the first pages until the last and am only just now catching my breath.

I will say that there were some slow spots. Times that I sort of skimmed my way through until things got a little more interesting. But that didn't take away from my overall enjoyment. Ms. Weber just knows how to create a world that will catch my attention. She did it with her Storm Siren series and she did it here. Now I just need to get to her other books! Because I am certain I will enjoy them likewise.

Facing many obstacles before her causes our main character, Rhen, to have quite the journey. Watching as she pushes through each one with determination to keep right on going was fun! I think that's one of my favorite things about Ms. Weber's stories, they are just a lot of fun. Rhen will make you laugh and perhaps even cause you a bit of exasperation and, ultimately, be quite unforgettable! Now. Don't mind me as I go back to reread all my favorite parts again. :) Read it when you get the chance, reader friends!

**I received a copy via Netgalley. All opinions expressed are my own.


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