Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Top 15 of 2015

TOP 15 OF 2015

I always enjoy getting my top reads of the year post ready! I especially enjoy that I get to add one more book each year! I didn't finish my Goodreads reading goal this year unfortunately. I got caught up in making Christmas gifts and ran out of time for reading. The books that I did read were good and as always I have a very eclectic list of reads for the year. So, here are my top 15. Have you read any of them?


Because I have a hard time picking just one in a series I went with two for my #15 slot. I loved this series since I am a mashup fan! Mix the Star Wars series with Shakespeare and you have a perfect combination. If you haven't read them, check them out!  


I fell in love with the characters in this series! The final book in the series comes out in June 2016. I can't wait to see what happens, but I will definitely miss Holmes County and all of the people and animals that reside there.  


It is no secret that I love romantic suspense! Lynette Eason is an expert at combining the two. I look forward to reading anything she writes.


I pretty much enjoy anything that Lena Goldfinch writes. The Bartered Bride is the 3rd in the series. I loved reading about Jem's story.


This is the beginning of a new series. I thought it was pretty solid. I'm currently reading the 2nd one in the series and am looking forward to seeing where it goes.


The final book in the Alaskan Courage series. Loved it!


Susan Sleeman always starts her books with a bang! I've pretty much loved everything she has written and of course it is in my favorite genre of romantic suspense.


Another favorite author that I pretty much have to grab up any time she comes out with a new book. Loved this one!


If you like stories with serial killers and detectives then definitely check these out. I love the relationship between Patrick and his step-daughter Tess. I still need to finish this series out, but am waiting for the price to go down on The King.


A sweet little short story by one of my favorite bloggers!


This is the 2nd book in the series. I can't wait for the 3rd and final installment in this wonderful trilogy!


The long-awaited finale to the Lunar Chronicles. It was an epic read with over 800 pages! Took me forever to read it, but it was so worth it! Loved it!


Why yes, yes I did read the majority of this series this year! I read the first 2 in prior years, but then devoured the rest this year. I'm a total fan and can't wait for the next installment!


No list is complete without a Julie Lessman book! I absolutely loved the beginning of this new series! A book full of forgiveness and romance. Can't wait to see what the next one brings!


OH MY GOSH! This was absolutely my most favorite book of the series! Cazien, Erielle! Seriously?! How can you go wrong with pirates? I wrote in my review that I felt like I was in the middle of an Indiana Jones or Pirates of the Caribbean movie while I was reading this. Absolutely my favorite book of the year, full of adventure, romance, comedy and so much more! 

Well, there you have it! My top 15 of the year. Looking forward to seeing what 2016 brings! Hope you all have a very blessed year!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

See How They Run by Ally Carter

Once Grace found out the truth about who killed her mother her sanity has been hanging on by a thread. Now that Grace knows who the scarred man is she is no longer afraid of him, instead he seems to be the only one that takes her seriously.

Grace's brother and his friend come to the embassy for Jamie to see for himself how Grace is doing. When Jamie's friend and Alexei get into a fist fight over Grace she is totally disgusted with both of them. When Jamie's friend ends up dead Alexei is accused of murder. Grace knows that Alexei wouldn't kill anyone so she is determined to hide him and find out who killed Jamie's friend.

Grace is tired of all of the secrets that are on Adria. Little by little the secrets are being revealed to her, but she still doesn't understand what an integral part her family plays in Adria's past. Forces are out to hurt Grace and the ones she loves and Grace must figure out whom to trust before it is too late.

I really like the mystery surrounding Grace and her family. There are secret societies, embassies, friendships, cover-ups, and royalty all represented in Grace's life. I wish that there was more of that in the book and less of Grace's "crazy" represented. I got tired of her beating herself up for her past. Yes, I believe that what happened to her could unhinge a person a bit. But it seemed overdone and didn't fit sometimes with the strong/stubborn characteristics that she seemed to exhibit at other times during the story. I did like the friendships that Grace has made with the other Embassy Row kids and the fact that they were willing to help her get to the bottom of what is going on and help her through the drama that is her life. As with the first book, See How They Run left us hanging at a pivotal part of the story and I now eagerly await the next Embassy Row novel in order to see what happens.

Check out my review of the first book in the series:

All Fall Down

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Winter by Marissa Meyer

I cannot tell you how much I looked forward to reading this book! I was so disappointed when FAIREST was snuck in between Cress and Winter. In protest I refused to read FAIREST! As I started WINTER I realized that maybe that wasn't a good idea since there are some things we apparently learn about Levana in FAIREST that are referenced in WINTER. Anyway, on to WINTER...

OH MY GOODNESS!! So much goes on in this book! Everyone comes together on Luna to try and overthrow Levana's reign. So much goodness, so much evil, so much love between characters and so much determination to end Levana's reign of terror and put Luna's rightful queen on the throne.

On Luna you have Winter who is Levana's step-daughter. Winter is a bit broken because she refuses to use her Lunar gift of glamouring herself or manipulating people around her, which has caused her lunar sickness. Jacin is her personal guard and pledged to protect her with his life. Scarlet is currently one of Winter's pets given her by Levana. Trapped in a cage Scarlet waits for the day that Wolf will come and save her.

It is time for Cinder to make her move to take the throne that is rightfully hers. Along with friends Wolf, Cress, Thorne and her trusty companion Iko, Cinder and company manage to gain access to Luna in order to rally the planet for her cause. In the meantime Kai is stuck in the palace preparing to marry Levana in order to save earth and gain the antidote for the Letumosis disease that has ravished earth for years.

Will Cinder and her friends and the citizens of Luna be able to stand against Levana and her Thaumaturges? So many things can go right, but also so many things can go terribly wrong.

I absolutely loved, and hated this book! Hated in a good way! I seriously had to put it down so many times because of all the intense scenes. Battle scenes, kissing scenes, sad scenes, happy scenes. Every emotion was tugged and every nail was bitten off! And talk about an epic read! Good grief! This book had 823 pages in it! Seriously, 823 EPIC pages! I wanted to get through it so quickly, but with that many pages and that much stress while reading it, it seriously took me about 2 weeks to read it. It was so worth reading! I loved how every character in the series was brought into this one final book and how the fairytale theme was wrapped up the way that all fairytales should be wrapped up, "And they all lived happily ever after." THE END!

Oh, and yes, I will be going back and reading FAIREST :)

Check out my reviews of the rest of the Lunar Chronicles: 


Thursday, December 17, 2015

Murder, Served Simply by Isabella Alan (aka Amanda Flower)

Angie's parents arrive in Holmes County for Christmas. Unfortunately Ryan, the man Angie was going to marry, arrives with them. Ryan is hoping to get back together with Angie and Angie's mother would like nothing better for her daughter!

One of the stops on a progressive dinner is at a hotel where a troupe of actors will be performing a controversial play portraying the Amish. Not everyone is happy that this acting troupe is in Holmes County and they are especially not happy that one of their former Amish young women is in the play. When the actress falls to her death during the performance of course Angie is hot on the spot to help solve the murder.

Putting her sleuthing skills to work Angie is off to interview potential suspects while avoiding spending any time with Ryan. Sheriff Mitchell is not too happy about Angie snooping around, and he is especially not happy about Ryan trying to win Angie back.

And of course it wouldn't be an Amish Quilt Shop Mystery without the antics of Angie's pets Oliver and Dodger. Oliver has a knack for understanding what his human wants and for getting into tight spots. Plus he is totally adorable with his reindeer sweater and red boots! And who could not fall in love with a pug that has appointed himself official caretaker of Dodger the kitten? Mystery and cute animals, what more could a reader ask for?

I believe this is the 3rd book in the series which I have read totally out of order! I read the 4th book first and then went back and got the first 3, plus I just saw that there looks to be a prequel which I just ordered. The last book of the series comes out in June 2016. I've really enjoyed reading about Angie and her fur babies, the goings on of Holmes County and especially Angie's relationship with the sheriff. I am looking forward to the last book coming out, but will definitely be sad to say good-bye to all of these characters.

My Reviews of An Amish Quilt Shop Mystery series:

Plainly Murder: I haven't read this one yet, but it looks to be about 110 pages long. I just ordered it today.
Murder, Plain and Simple
Murder, Simply Stitched
Murder, Served Simply: review on this page
Murder, Plainly Read
Murder, Handcrafted: coming out in June 2016 available for pre-order

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

The Bartered Bride by Lena Goldfinch

About the Book: 



Jem Wheeler has always been a survivor. He just wants to make a fresh start in Colorado Springs after the loss of his wife. But then he happens upon a young mute woman being sold off to the highest bidder. He wasn’t looking for a mail-order bride. He wasn’t looking to rescue anyone either. But desperate circumstances can drive a good man to do things he hadn’t planned on doing...

When Jem steps into Annie’s life, she’s not expecting anyone to save her. Mute from birth, she’s just using all her wits to survive. All she’s ever really wanted is a family of her own. For someone to see her. To look at her long enough to hear the things she can’t say.

Can a rescued bride who can’t speak communicate her love for a grieving widower and his little girl? Will her love ever be returned?

The Brides Series #3

Note: Each book in The Brides Series can be read as a stand-alone novel, but reading in order will provide a more complete reading experience.






LENA GOLDFINCH writes sweet Historical Western Romance / Inspirational Romance and books for teens. She’s always been a sucker for a good old-fashioned romance, whether it’s a novel or short story, young adult or adult, fantasy or realistic, contemporary or historical. Lena has been a finalist in several national writing contests, including the RWA Golden Heart and ACFW Genesis contests. She enjoys life in a quiet, small town with her husband, two kids, and two very spoiled Black Labs.


My Review: 

Jem Wheeler’s wife has recently passed away. He and their daughter Mae are on their way to his wife’s former home.  Jem isn’t sure why he is going there, but he feels the urge to take Mae to her mother’s home. On the way the train they are on comes to a stop and Jem decides to check on his horse and get he and Mae some food. What he encounters changes he and Mae’s life forever.

Annie hasn’t bathed in days, but there is a reason for this. She must keep the man she is travelling with away from her at all costs. Annie can’t speak to defend herself so she must rely on other resources to help keep herself from being abused. Annie’s mother abandoned her when she was 3 leaving Annie an orphan. The family that Annie was with could no longer care for her so now she is travelling with a disreputable pastor who is set on selling her to an equally disreputable man. This is where Jem and Annie’s paths cross. Seeing the transaction taking place and Annie’s distress over the treatment of a young puppy Jem steps in and offers to marry Annie and take the puppy with them. Needless to say he makes an enemy of the man who wanted to purchase Annie.

Annie is amazed that Jem would marry her and take her with him saving her from the man with the evil eyes. Mae understands it isn’t to be a “real” marriage, but she is quite willing to be a caretaker for Mae and help Jem in any way she can. Jem has closed himself off from caring about anyone since his wife has died. When they reach the ranch he throws himself into the work that is needed. When he realizes how pretty Annie is once she cleans up he pushes her away feeling disloyal to his first wife. 

Of course the man with the evil eyes is a neighbor of their ranch and it is inevitable that they will see him. Jem vows though that he will let nothing happen to Annie or Mae. From the moment Annie arrives on the ranch she starts to realize what a special man Jem is. By her quiet loyalty Annie manages to win over Jem’s young brother-in-law Ben and Ray who does all of the cooking for the ranch. What Annie wants most though is to win Jem’s heart as he has won hers. 

This was such a sweet story. I loved how Jem swooped in to Annie’s rescue. Even though Jem was closed off because of the death of his wife he still was able to rescue Annie from her situation and give her a new life. I loved the way the author portrayed how patient Jem was with Annie not being able to communicate. I enjoyed the softening and awareness that Jem started having for Annie even though he felt he was being disloyal to his first marriage. The suspense was sort of secondary to the story of Annie and Jem, but it definitely kept me up too late wanting to find out how the whole story ended. This is the 3rd book in The Brides Series with The Unexpected Bride being the first book and Sleigh Bells and Mistletoe, a short story, being the 2nd. I recommend all three books. They probably don’t have to be read in order, but Jem is in the first 2 books so to get a feel for his background I would recommend reading them in order.  I hope that author Lena Goldfinch will be writing another book in the series as I would really like to know what happened with one of the characters in this installment.


In celebration of the release of The Bartered Bride, Lena is giving away some awesome prizes! 

·        Grand Prize: $25 gift card (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Kobo, or Google Play—winner’s choice) + all three ebooks in The Brides series (Open internationally)

·        Second Prize: Paperback copy of The Bartered Bride (Open to US residents only)

·        Third Prize: All three ebooks in The Brides series (Open internationally)

To enter these drawings, just fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Winners will be chosen after the end of the blog tour (December 19, 2015).


a Rafflecopter giveaway