Friends to the End (0.5 The Walnut Creek Series) by Shelley Shepard Gray

friends

Publisher: Gallery Books

Published: February 11, 2019

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

NetGalley: When Andy’s baby sister Trish gets stranded at the family cabin during a massive blizzard, he calls upon his best friends—the Magnificent Eight—to go to his sister’s rescue.

Andy knows that several members of the Eight will drop everything to help, and they’re the perfect solution because the Amish aren’t hindered by stalled cars—they can travel just fine in their buggies.

But when Logan, Trish’s secret crush, is the first to volunteer to save her, she can’t help but worry that despite the freezing temperatures, being alone with Logan might mean that things heat up pretty fast. Filled with Shelley Shepard Gray’s signature “heart-warming, heart-stopping” (Wendy Corsi Staub, New York Times bestselling author) prose, Friends to the End is an evocative and endearing romance.

My review: Wow, what an introduction to the Walnut Creek Series. I was blown away by how a novella made me fall in love with the characters so quickly. I am a sucker for Amish romance and this novella delivered on all aspects. The end will leave you hungering for more.

A quick read perfect for a quiet evening.

I have already read the blurb for book one, The Patient One and I am very impatient to read the book. Warning do not read the blurb for book one until you have read this novella.

I received a complimentary copy of this novella from the publisher, Gallery Books, through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.

Ellie’s Redemption (An Amish Charm Bakery #2) by Molly Jebber

ellie

Pages: 288

Publisher: Kensington/Zebra

Published: January 29, 2019

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

After experiencing the English world for a bit, Ellie has returned to her Amish community and enjoys working with her stepmom in the bakery. Joel and his family have just moved to Charm for a new chance. He is not aware of Ellie’s past and finds himself falling for her. When her past comes to light will Joel be able to forgive her and continue to love her?

As I felt with the first book in the series, I find it hard to review a book that I just liked and not loved. It is not the author’s fault if the book did not speak to me. I have read many reviews where others loved it. My main issue remains the same as I felt the story was rushed. It seemed to jump from one thing to another and ideas were not given a full follow through as I am used to in other Amish novels.

This is Ellie’s story and I’m still not impressed with her behavior. At times she still acted like a brat and I found myself shaking my head in disgust at her.

Will I continue with the series if there are more? I honestly don’t know. I’m leaning towards this series not being my cup of tea.

Please do not use my review as a judge if you want to read the book. Read the book yourself and make your own opinion. What doesn’t speak to me may speak volumes to you.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Kensington through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.

Premeditated Peppermint (Amish Candy Shop #3) by Amanda Flower

peppermint

Pages: 352 (eBook)

Publisher: Kensington

Published: September 25, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

It’s Christmas time in Harvest, Ohio and Bailey is excited to be sharing a small town Christmas with her Amish grandmother making treats for the shop and the Christmas Market on the Square. Her happiness soon fades when her ex-boyfriend walks in the shop with a TV crew wanting to film a reunion of their love and to showcase a real Amish Christmas. As Bailey tries to navigate her feelings for the local sheriff deputy with her ex standing nearby she finds the body of the executive producer of the show. Will Bailey help her ex clear his name or will she find out he really is a scoundrel only thinking of himself?

One can never go wrong reading a book written by Amanda Flower. My favorites are her Amish cozy mysteries.

The town of Harvest is a wonderful little town that will have you longing to visit. You will be hoping to run into Bailey, her grandmother and of course Jethro, the town’s polka dotted pig.

Premediated Peppermint will have you longing for Christmas and craving everything peppermint. There is a recipe for Peppermint Bark at the end that sounds divine and does not seem too hard to make.

I enjoyed the book and was riveted until the end. The ending is a swoon worthy ending that has me longing for the next book in the series, Toxic Toffee. I am on the edge of my seat to see how the relationship between Bailey and Aiden blossoms.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Kensington through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.

A Christmas by the Sea by Melody Carlson

christmas sea

Pages: 176 (eBook)

Publisher: Revell

Published: September 4, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Wendy and her son, Jackson, have been living in Cincinnati, OH and trying to cope with life after the death of her husband, his dad. Wendy’s grandfather passed away and left her his home in Seaside, Maine. Wendy plans on updating the home and selling it ASAP. They drive to Maine over Thanksgiving break and both fall in love with the house and town. Jackson wants to live there but Wendy sees no way to make a living and insists they must go back to Cincinnati. Will the townspeople, one in particular, change her mind and give a young boy his Christmas wish?

What a heartwarming, beautiful Christmas read. Melody Carlson writes with such love and hope that you can’t help but fall in love with Seaside. She makes the reader wish we could experience the Christmas season on the Maine coast with mornings of shelling, days filled with creating beauty within our home and evenings filled with delicious seafood meals.

I would like to see a return visit to Seaside with one of the other characters with an update to how Wendy and Jackson are doing.

I received a complimentary copy of this story from Revell through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.

Dim Sum of all Fears (A Noodle Shop Mystery #2) by Vivien Chien

dim

Pages: 320 (eBook)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: August 28, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Lana is still working in her parents Chinese restaurant in Downtown Cleveland even though she would rather be working as a manager in the corporate world. Just as she thinks she has found the break she has been looking for her parents must fly to Taiwan to take care of her grandmother and have left her in charge of the restaurant with the Chinese New Year right around the corner. Everything is running smoothly until one morning she finds the owners of the shop next door brutally murdered. Can Lana leave the investigation to the police or will she find herself facing the murderer on her own?

This book was very enjoyable. I have already bought the first book in the series to take with me this weekend to read while traveling. Lana, amateur sleuth, is the reason we have cozies. Even though she lives in Cleveland, her community is Asia Village. A small village of Asian stores, restaurants and businesses. She may wish to work in corporate America but she is the force that keeps this little village alive. Her relationship with local law enforcement officer Adam is hilarious but serious at the same time. He wants her to stay safe and she just can’t help herself getting into trouble. I get this picture in my head of him just shaking his head in defeat but smiling at the same time out of love. I can’t wait to learn more about him as the series progresses.

This is the perfect series to begin if you are looking for a culinary cozy mystery series in a different setting. Be prepared to be craving everything Chinese as you are reading. I had to keep myself from drooling as I was reading.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from St. Martin’s Press through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.

The Mending by Susan Lantz Simpson

mending

Pages: 288 (eBook)

Publisher: Kensington

Published: August 28, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Malinda is happy to be out of the hospital in Ohio and heading back home to Maryland. As she settles back in the swing of home life she wonders if she will ever share the joy her friend Phoebe has with her boyfriend soon to be fiancé. Malinda has Chron’s disease and feels she is a burden to everyone around her, especially her family.

Timothy has been in Malinda’s life for as long as anyone can remember as he is her older brother, Sam’s, best friend. Timothy has waited patiently for years for Malinda to grow up and be ready to accept suitors. Now that the time has come can he convince Melinda that she will never be a burden to him?

What a beautiful love story between Malinda and Timothy. The love and patience he has for Malinda would make any girl swoon, young or old, English or Amish. Both of them have a strong faith in God and the way it is portrayed is great. The author uses real life experiences to show how God is in each of our lives. The author writes with such knowledge that one would think you were reading a true story and not one of fiction.

This is the second book by Susan Lantz Simpson I have read and I am eagerly awaiting the next book in the series.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Kensington Book through NetGalley and any all opinions expressed in the above review are entirely my own.

An Amish Heirloom by Amy Clipston, Beth Wiseman, Kathleen Fuller and Kelly Irvin

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Pages: 380

Publisher: Zondervan

Published: April 10, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Four gentle Amish reads to lighten up any day.

A Legacy of Love by Amy Clipston
Leon let Susie go several years when he could not make the promise to marry her on day. Now Susie is engaged and has asked Leon to restore her grandparents’ rocking chairs for her new home. Can rocking chairs by the tie that binds?

 

The Cedar Chest by Beth Wiseman
Catherine is struggling in her marriage and has turned to her mother for comfort but does not reveal what is happening. Catherine finds her great grandmother’s chest in her parents basement and convinces her mom, Emma, to open it. They discover family love letters. Will the letters bring Catherine and Emma closer so Catherine can share her fears with her mom?

The Treasured Book by Kathleen Fuller
Shane met Lucy when he was restoring his house in Iowa and ever since then Shane has wanted to join the Amish faith to further his relationship with God. He is staying with his Amish friend in Ohio to learn more about the faith when he runs into Lucy. Lucy is taking care of a family member who has become ill. Lucy joins Shane on a trip to a local antique market where Shane buys a Bible. Will the contents within strengthen their bond?

The Midwife’s Dream by Kelly Irvin
The district’s midwife, Iris, wants a family of her own but has yet to find the love she is seeking. Mahon brings two English teenagers to her house when they stopped at his family farm asking for help as the girl was in labor. During the night Iris realizes Mahon is not just her best friend’s brother. Could he be the love she has been praying for all along?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Zondervan through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Lethal Licorice (An Amish Candy Shop #2) by Amanda Flower

lethal licorice

Pages: 353 (eBook)

Publisher: Kensington Books

Published: February 27, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Bailey has stayed in Harvest, OH after the death of her Daadi (grandfather) to her Maami (grandmother) run the family candy shop, Swissmen Sweets. Her grandfather was to participate in the highly competitive Amish Confectionery Competition and the judges have allowed Bailey to take his place. On the first day of the competition Bailey has a run in with a rival Amish candy shop owner, Josephine Weaver. Also, the town’s beloved polka-dotted pig, Jethro, has gone missing and his owner, Juliet, is distraught with worry. As Bailey looks for Jethro she unfortunately finds the body of Josephine. Will the police, particularly Aiden, be suspicious of her once again?

Whenever I am stressed I like to turn to cozy mysteries and Amish fiction. When you put the two of them together I am one happy reader. Amanda Flower has perfected the craft of writing Amish cozy mysteries. You are instantly transported to Harvest, OH into Bailey’s world as soon as you open the book. The details are rich with beauty and flavor. You can almost taste the candy Bailey and the others are making. It is a guarantee you will be craving whatever Bailey and her grandmother are making. Right now I want licorice and taffy. YUM!

Not only is there a murder mystery going on there is also a young Amish girl that Bailey meets that is trying to decide her path in life, stay Amish or leave or faith. The care and compassion shown from Bailey and her grandmother is the true spirit of helping one another. You will be moved like I was.

There is a small romance between Bailey and Aiden brewing but it does not take over the main story. They are both taking their time until they move to the next step. Aiden seems like the perfect match for Bailey. He lets her explore but is always around to help her pick up the pieces.

I cannot review the book without a blurb about Jethro. Who can resist a polka-dotted pig? This pig lives the perfect life. He is doted on like a king by his mom, Juliet and she just so happens to be Aiden’s mom and one of Bailey’s close friends in Harvest, OH. I found myself worrying about Jethro being lost in the dark and cold even when I was not reading. I absolutely love how Amanda Flower gives true personality to her animal characters. To me that shows she has a beautiful heart.

I am very excited to see the next adventure of Bailey and friends and to see where the romance is headed. Hurry and get your copy today from your favorite bookseller. If you have not read the first book, Assaulted Caramel, you should buy it also. Make it a sweet weekend of reading.