Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Jane Reviews: Driftwood Bay by Irene Hannon

Series: Hope Harbour # 5
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Revell
Releases: April 2, 2019
352 pages
About the Book:
After tragedy upends her world, Jeannette Mason retreats to the tiny Oregon seaside town of Hope Harbor to create a new life. Vowing to avoid emotional attachments, she focuses on running her lavender farm and tea-room--until a new neighbor with a destructive dog and a forlorn little girl invades her turf. But she needn't worry. Dr. Logan West is too busy coping with an unexpected family, a radical lifestyle change, and an unruly pup to have any interest in his aloof and disagreeable neighbor.

Yet when both Jeannette and Logan find themselves pulled into the life of a tattered Christian family fleeing persecution in war-torn Syria, might they discover that love sometimes comes calling when it's least expected?




 
My Rating & Thoughts:    🌟 🌟 🌟    (3 stars) 

I had fallen in love with Hope Harbor through the previous books in this series and was really excited to return. However I found myself not as drawn into this story as I have been with the previous ones. While I enjoyed getting to know the new characters and reconnecting with previous ones I found the story moved a little slow for my liking. I did not experience the ‘I can’t put this down’ feeling. The descriptions of the landscape captured my heart and would love to visit Oregon coast someday.

Each character is dealing with the loss of loved ones and trying to figure out how to overcome the tragedies in their lives. Each respond in different ways and it takes a frightening incident to make some of them realize what is right in front of them. I loved the message that actions and words need to be combined, you can’t show one without the other.

Out of all the characters Logan’s situation pulled at my heart the most, he has lost his brother and mother and is now responsible for raising his niece. He has changed his whole life for Molly and is trying hard to bond with her yet she seems to always pull away from him each time they begin to connect. Jeannette has chosen to purposefully isolate herself from others for fear of being hurt, but when the new family arrives in town she feels pulled between helping and keeping distance. Miriam is a survivor, she has been through so much and could have responded the same way her son did but instead she chose joy. Thomma is bitter and wants to stay mad at God. Two little girls connect without even speaking the same language and teach the adults around them so much.
 
My favourite parts were the chats with Charlie and the wisdom that he offered the characters. I think the best advice he gave was: “Don’t let fear stop you from being everything God intended you to be.” This is a piece of wisdom I will take away from this story.
 
(I received an ARC of this book from Revell through NetGalley; opinions expressed
in this review are my honest opinion and completely my own.)


Other Books in the Series:
 
        

Monday, 25 March 2019

Monday's RSU: March 25th


Welcome to Monday's RSU. Every Monday I share an update of my reading status - what book (or books) I finished since last Monday, what book I am currently reading and what I am planning on reading next. 

Just Finished:

 

Currently Reading: 
     

Reading Next:



What are you books are you currently reading or have recently enjoyed?

Monday, 11 March 2019

Monday's RSU: March 11th


Welcome to Monday's RSU. Every Monday I share an update of my reading status - what book (or books) I finished since last Monday, what book I am currently reading and what I am planning on reading next. 

Just Finished:


Currently Reading: 
     

Reading Next:



What are you books are you currently reading or have recently enjoyed?

Friday, 8 March 2019

First Line Friday: Healing Love


Happy Friday!

Welcome to First Line Friday's hosted by Hoarding Books.

Today's book is:  Healing Love by Jennifer Slattery

About the Book:
A news anchor intern has it all planned out, and love isn't on the agenda.

Brooke Endress is on the cusp of her lifelong dream when her younger sister persuades her to chaperone a mission trip to El Salvador. Packing enough hand sanitizer and bug spray to single-handedly wipe out malaria, she embarks on what she hopes will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

But Brooke is blindsided by the desperation for hope and love she sees in the eyes of the orphans she encounters. And no less by the connection she feels with her handsome translator. As newfound passion blooms, Brooke wrestles with its implications for her career dreams.

Ubaldo Chavez, teacher and translator, knows the struggle that comes with generational poverty. But he found the way out – education – and is determined to help his students rise above.

When he agrees to translate for a mission team from the United States he expects to encounter a bunch of "missional tourists" full of empty promises. Yet an American news anchor defies his expectations, and he finds himself falling in love. But what does he have to offer someone with everything? 


   
 

I read this book a couple weeks ago and the opening line made me want to keep reading. In between reading the new releases that I just can't wait for, I have been trying to focus on reading books that I own but have not yet read. When I looked at my amazon account I dicovered that I purchased it August 2017, finally a year and a half later I can move it from my tbr to my read pile. I hope to have my review up in the next few days.

Now it's your turn!
Let me know your first line in the comments and then head over
to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating! 

Thursday, 7 March 2019

#Throwback Thursday: Sandpiper Cove



It’s Throwback Thursday! As we patiently await the next book in the Hope Harbor series by Irene Hannon, it seems fitting to reshare our review of Sandpiper Cove, which is book 3 and has been our favourite of the series so far. Book 5, entitled Driftwood Bay, releases April 2nd.

About the Book:
Hope Harbor police chief Lexie Graham has plenty on her plate raising her son alone and dealing with a sudden rash of petty theft and vandalism in her coastal Oregon hometown. As a result, she has zero time for extracurricular activities--including romance. Ex-con Adam Stone isn't looking for love either--but how ironic is it that the first woman to catch his eye is a police chief? Yet wishing for things that can never be is foolish.
 
Nevertheless, when Lexie enlists Adam's help to keep a young man from falling into a life of crime, sparks begin to fly. And as they work together, it soon becomes apparent that God may have a different--and better--future planned for them than either could imagine. 

 
Review by JaneReads: (originally posted May 28/17)

Best of the series so far. I found myself cheering for Adam and Lexie very quickly. I enjoyed getting to know them individually and then once they interacted I knew I wanted them together. But can that work when one is the police chief and one is an ex-con?

Adam has made mistakes in his past, but since coming to Hope Harbor he has been a model citizen, working hard and helping others. However because of his past he is dealing with self-esteem issues and wonders who would want to even be friends with him never mind who would date him. But thanks to the influence of Reverend Baker he has learned to turn to God. His confidence is just starting to build up when a rumor starts spreading about him while he debates how to handle it he gets a true surprise. Lexie on the other hand has turned away from God due to a tragic experience in her past and has not shared the full story with anyone. However she feels compelled to share her whole story with Adam. Can he help her see that God is always with her and there for her?

In addition to previous characters we have come to know over the series was the addition of Lexie’s mom and son, Annette & Matt. I loved the mom, she was just the right amount of pushy with Lexie. Unlike previous books where Charley seemed to know more than was possible, this time things seemed much more realistic. The secondary storyline with Brian was enjoyable as well, I liked that it didn’t seem like I was reading a separate story wondering how they would connect.

Themes of second-chances, change being possible, forgiveness being offered and good being brought out in people are evident. The budding romance was written delightful and enjoyable, with a wonderful and heart-warming ending.



Review by C: (originally posted May 28/17)

This series quickly became one of my favorites.  Through the series, Hope Harbor has become quite the community.  I have such a vivid picture in my mind of the community and people – I enjoy visiting Hope Harbor through each new additional book in this series.  Sandpiper Cove did not disappoint.  It’s a heartwarming story, that shows how God works through the character’s lives.  The storyline played out so nicely between the main characters, Lexi, the police chief and Adam, the ex-con.  The initial tension between them based on their previous lives and seeing how this storyline progressed was great.  Initially I had a difficult time wrapping my head around the character of Charlie.  It seemed a little too unrealistic to me at first.  However, by the end of the first book in this series, I started seeing Charlie’s character in not quite so much of a literal way, but rather more of a symbolic, metaphorical way.  And then I started to really enjoy Charlie’s character and enjoyed their interactions at the taco stand.    I had an expectation that  by the end of the book, everything would be dealt with and nicely tied up.  I was surprised by the ending of the storyline with Brian  - at first I felt like it wrapped up a little too quick, with loose ends.  But then I realized I was happy with the ending of this storyline as it felt very realistic and true to life.

Original posts can be found here:

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Jane Reviews: Sabotaged by Dani Pettrey

Series: Alaskan Courage # 5
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Bethany House
Released: Feb. 3, 2015
325 pages
About the Book:
Growing up, goody-two-shoes Kirra Jacobs and troublemaker Reef McKenna were always at odds. Now, working together as search-and-rescue for Alaska's arduous Iditarod race, a growing attraction seems to be forcing aside old arguments. Then Reef catches Kirra sneaking from camp in the middle of the night.

Kirra's uncle, a musher in the race, has disappeared. Kirra and Reef quickly track the man, but what they discover is harrowing: Frank's daughter has been kidnapped. Kirra and Reef, along with the entire McKenna family, are thrown into a race to stop a shadowy villain who is not only threatening a girl's life--but appears willing to unleash one of the largest disasters Alaska has ever seen.
 
Dani Pettrey's Website
     

 


My Rating & Thoughts:    🌟 🌟 🌟    (3 stars)

Kirra and Reef may have known each other all their lives, but do they really know one another? Over the course of this story we experience them learning more about each other.

Reef has returned to Alaska after spending quite a few years away living a carefree lifestyle with no commitments, doing what he wants when he wants. Kirra is his exact opposite, she has always followed the rules and by all appearances has it all together. However she has been keeping a heartbreaking secret from everyone.

When her uncle goes missing during the Iditarod race, Reef surprises her and commits to helping her search for him. When they do find the uncle they learn that his daughter has been kidnapped and he is being forced to do the kidnapper’s bidding in order to save her. At times it did not seem like they would be able to find the daughter and stop the kidnapper before something horrible happens.

Their search takes them Anchorage where Kirra is forced to face her past. Even though Reef doesn’t know what happened, he supports and stands up for her when she is verbally attacked. This moment really endeared me to him. When it is revealed what Kirra’s secret is and how her parents reacted, I hurt for her and was mad at her parents. It did not surprise me that Kirra struggled with understanding where God was during the difficult times. There was quite a bit of faith talk throughout with a very important message being presented – God is with us through everything.

While there were parts of the story that were suspenseful it did feel like each incident was recovered from very quickly. Overall the story felt predictable and I was able to guess how the case would end. As I don’t really know much about the Iditarod race I would have enjoyed more detail about it. My favourite part of the story was that the whole McKenna family was involved in this case. I enjoyed getting to spend more time with the siblings I got to know through the previous four books. However the ending epilogue left me a bit disappointed. I understand wanting to leave readers with answers of what is in future for the characters but Piper’s reveal felt impossible (too early to know). This is such a minor thing but it bothered me and sticks out in my memory when I think of this book.
 


(I purchased my copy of this book;  opinions expressed in this review
are my honest opinion and completely my own.)

JaneReads_thumb[1]

Monday, 4 March 2019

Monday's RSU: March 4th


Welcome to Monday's RSU. Every Monday I share an update of my reading status - what book (or books) I finished since last Monday, what book I am currently reading and what I am planning on reading next. 

Just Finished:

 


Currently Reading: 

     

Reading Next:



What are you books are you currently reading or have recently enjoyed?