Secrets at Cedar Cabin (Lavender Tides #3) by Colleen Coble

cedar

Pages: 352

Publisher: Thomas Nelson – Fiction

Published: January 22, 2019

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Bailey’s life has been turned upside down since the murder of her mother. One of the biggest changes has been fleeing from Rock Harbor, MI to Lavender Tides, WA. Once there she meets Lance, an FBI agent hunting for the human trafficking ring that abducted his sister five years ago. Through wonderful mastery, Coble has written an edge of your seat thriller with plenty of romance.

Secrets at Cedar Cabin is the third book in the Lavender Tide series and it kept up with the first two as being a fast-paced read with no dull scenes. You will find yourself embedded in Lavender Tides as you read. Fans of romantic thrillers will enjoy this book/series. You can read each as a standalone with no issues.

This book deals with the more sensitive subject of human trafficking so before giving it to a teenager to read I would sit down and discuss what human trafficking is and what to look for on social media and how to stay safe. Coble does an excellent job of showing how scarily easy it can be for our young women to be picked up by these horrible excuses of human beings.

I enjoy reading Coble’s books as I know I am guaranteed a clean romance, no obscene language, and a happy ending.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson-Fiction through NetGalley. Any and all opinions expressed in the above review is entirely my own.

The Glass Ocean by Beatriz Williams, Lauren Willig and Karen White

glass

Audiobook: 14 hours

Publisher: William Morrow

Published: September 8, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

A story of romance, illicit affairs, espionage, and tragedy.

It’s 2013 and Sarah Blake needs to find inspiration for her next best-selling book. At her wit’s end she opens her great-grandfather’s chest and discovers information that could be history changing regarding the sinking of the Lusitania.

Go back 98 years to April 1915 and we meet Caroline, a first-class passenger, who is married to Gilbert. Gilbert is very pre-occupied and Caroline hopes this cruise ignites a spark in their marriage. What she did not expect was to run into her first love, Robert Langford.

Tessa Fairweather, a second-class passenger, is working with her sister to obtain the music composition that is in the hands of Gilbert. Tessa does not understand why she is to get this music but one thing she does understand is that she is falling for Robert.

What does Sarah learn and how does each passenger above affect the outcome?

I opted to listen to the audiobook and let me state it is FOURTEEN hours of listening. I enjoyed the audiobook as the narrator did an excellent job with all the characters. My issue was I did not have a lot of time lumped together to listen to a good chunk at one time.

The story jumps between Sarah (2013), Caroline (1915) and Tessa (1915) so you do need to keep track of who is talking and what year it is. It is pretty easy since the majority of Caroline and Tessa’s time is on the Lusitania.

I knew very little about the sinking of the Lusitania and The Glass Ocean has whetted my appetite for more.

Sadie by Courtney Summers

sadie

Pages: 320 (eBook)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: September 4, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Whoa what a tumultuous read.

In a small town that America has forgot, is a young girl trying to raise her little sister Mattie wit little help from those around them. Sadie’s life is shattered when Mattie is found in a local orchard violently murdered. Sadie takes it upon herself to find the murderer and bring vigilante justice to him. As Sadie works her way across the miles she finds herself closer to the murderer but does she also find herself closer to her own death as well?

National radio personality, West McCray, hears Sadie’s story and finds himself unable to not get involved. The investigation he launches starts taking over his life and his hope is he finds Sadie before it’s too late.

I had no idea while reading Sadie that it was labeled as a YA read. Any fan of thrillers and mysteries will enjoy this book no matter their age. WARNING: there is plenty of violence, foul language and sensitive subjects (child abuse, child sexual abuse, drug use) throughout the book but all that is what makes this book unable to put down. I almost expected to look up from the book and her my West on the radio talking about a true case.

The book is written in two forms: a narrative when reading Sadie’s thoughts and actions and a podcast transcript when reading West’s thoughts and actions. The podcast transcript reading was different but fit this book.

You will be thinking about this book long after you have finished. It will keep you up at night even if you aren’t up reading.

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

Against the Claw (Lobster Shack Mystery #2) by Shari Randall

claw

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: July 31, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I’m in love with this series. Allie is moving right up there in the top five of my favorite amateur sleuths. I love her sweetness, spunkiness and doggedness to find the killer. Even a bum ankle does not slow her down.

In book two of the Lobster Shack Mystery series we join Allie, Aunt Gully, and friends as they prepare for the Fourth of July. The Lazy Mermaid has more customers than ever and Lorel, Allie’s sister, agrees for the Mermaid to cater “THE” Fourth of the July party for Stellene Lupo. Before that can happen a Jane Doe is found by Allie as she lobsters with a family friend. Can Allie find out who she is and what happened before she ends up sleeping with the fishes?

The Lobster Shack series is a pure joy to read. The description of Mystic Bay, CT is so real that you feel like you are right there with Allie. You can taste the lobster rolls, smell the salt from the ocean and feel the sand under your toes. This is a place I wish I could visit and meet Allie. She seems like a great person to have in your corner.

Her sister, Lorel, was not so frustrating this book. In the first book, Curses, Boiled Again, I did not like Lorel and was hoping she was going to be a minor character with little interaction. She was needed and added a lot to the second book.

If you are a new fan of cozies and like the beach, you should grab the first two books in the series and block out a weekend (preferably on the beach) and read, read, read. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

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

She Was the Quiet One by Michele Campbell

quiet one

Pages: 352 (eBook)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: July 31, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

We all know the saying: you always have to watch out for the quiet ones. Twins Bel and Rose lost their dad when they were very young and their mom recently their freshman year of high school. Rose is the quiet, studious twin who follows all rules and Bel is the wild and adventurous one who thinks rules are meant to be broken. With no one left to take them in, the move to New Hampshire to live with their father’s mother, their grandmother. Their grandmother enrolls them in Odell, a boarding school all Enrights’ have attended for generations. On the outside, the school looks like a dream come true for anyone but on the inside bullying, sexual escapades and drugs run rampant. Bel and Rose find themselves fighting constantly and not talking to one another.

Rose and Heath are teachers at Odell who were once students themselves. They have recently been promoted to house monitors of the Enright twins dorm. Rose is uncomfortable with this new position but will support her husband in his dream to rise to the top. Weird things start occurring that Rose cannot account for and make her question how well does she know her husband and does she truly mean the vows of sticking with your husband through good time and bad.

She Was the Quiet One was a thriller that made me want to keep turning the pages even though I pinned the killer very early on. There were a few times the red herrings made me rethink my decision on who the killer was but I was not deterred. I found myself shaking my head in despair at how blind people with authority can be to what truly is happening. Thank goodness for one female cop who went with her instincts.

Rose was my least favorite main character of the book. She seemed very weak and dependent on her husband, Heath. I felt she truly believed she could not survive without him. I am not a fan of weak female characters.

The novel while predictable does make you think how sad it is what people will do to find satisfaction and be at the top of their profession. Those people do not care who they hurt in the process and see themselves above the rules, laws and morals.

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 House at Saltwater Point (Lavender Tides #2) by Colleen Coble

saltwater

Pages: 352 (eBook)

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Published: July 3, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

As far as Christian Suspense goes, Colleen Coble is the best.

Ellie has never forgiven herself for her part in the death of her youngest sister and subsequently her mother so she has always “mothered and babied” her other sister Mac. When her sister goes missing and is accused of stealing cocaine Ellie takes it upon herself to prove the Coast Guard wrong. Can Ellie save her sister and her sister’s reputation as her heart falls for the man trying to find and arrest Mac?

The Lavender Tides series is the Christian suspense series to be devoured. I thought The View from Rainshadow Bay was as edge of your seat reading as you could get but The House at Saltwater Point proved me wrong. My heart was racing through most of the book as Ellie was racing to find her sister. I enjoy learning as I read and appreciated how terrorism was handled in the book.

I adore how Colleen Coble can write stories within the story and not lose the importance of any of the stories. My interest has been piqued for the Hope Beach series. I see more books being added to my TBR pile.

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

Murder at the Mansion (Victorian Village Mystery #1) by Sheila Connolly

murder at the mansion

Pages: 328 (eBook)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: June 26, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Kate left her hometown of Asheford, MD after high school graduation and never really looked back until she received a call from her high school best friend asking her to help save the town. The only thing the town has going for it is the Victorian mansion owed by Henry Barton. One town council member, Cordelia “Cordy” Walker wants to rip everything out and turn it into an upscale hotel and run it herself. As Kate tours the mansion and starts putting together a plan, she finds Cordy dead on the mansion’s front steps. Who would want Cordy dead or maybe the question should be who doesn’t want Cordy dead? Can Kate solve the murder and save the town?

An excellent first book in a new series by Shelia Connolly. I am very excited to see how the series progesses. The premise of building the town into a Victorian Village is very interesting. Normally I am not a huge fan of American Victorian literature, classic or modern, but this series may just change my mind. The history that is woven in throughout the book is given to the reader in a knowledgeable way but so filled with boring facts that you get lost. I learned a lot about Clara Barton and her work outside of the Red Cross that I had no clue about. I want to read more about it but at the same time I don’t want to ruin any future plot lines of the series.

There is a little bit of a romance but it plays very lightly in the background. It in no way distracts from the murder mystery. I hope it stays that way for a couple more books in the series so we can continue to build up the characters.

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

Kappy King and the Pickle Kaper (An Amish Mystery #2) by Amy Lillard

kappy

Pages: 352 (eBook)

Publisher: Kensington Books

Published: June 26, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Kappy King had been living a quiet life on the edges of her Amish faith until Edie returned home to care for her special needs brother. Since then Kappy and Edie have been in the midst of murder investigations. This time it involves a young Amish girl who was killed in an auto accident delivering pickles to the store. Can Kappy and Edie find the killer before angering everyone in the town?

This is the second book in The Amish Mystery series from Amy Lillard and it is a treat to read. Each book reads as a stand alone but you get a lot of the back story in the first book, Kappy King and the Puppy Caper. Each book is a clean read with a light romance in the background. I would have no problems letting a teenager into mysteries read these books.

Edie is ex-Amish and is hilarious in her outfits. She is a great friend for Kappy in that she makes Kappy come out of her shell and be apart of the community. Kappy is a great friend for Edie in that she makes Edie think about her life decisions. You could not have two better friends for each other.

Grab yourself some pickles (white church pickles or green) and go to town reading about the latest adventures for Kappy King.

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

The Neighbor by Joseph Souza

the neighbor

Pages: 352 (eBook)

Publisher: Kensington

Published: April 24, 2018

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Leah’s husband wants to own his own brewery and make it big. What’s a wife to do but move her two kids across country from Seattle to Maine to support her husband’s dreams. Nothing is what she expected. They live in an undeveloped neighborhood, she has made no friends and never sees her husband. Whether out of boredom or desperation or both Leah becomes fixated on their only neighbors, the Gaines particularly Clarissa Gaines. Leah starts sneaking in their house trying to get to know Clarissa better. Things heat up when a local college student goes missing and is feared dead. Is there a connection between her neighbors and the missing girl?

Talk about a stay up all night and read book, this is the book. I found myself turning the pages faster than you can say BOO. Every chapter seemed to have a twist that made me go “WHAT?” and keep reading to find out what was happening next.

The only issue I kind of had with the book was the racial tone at the beginning seemed forced and I wasn’t sure if it was necessary but as you read the book you came to understand why it was used and it makes the story so much more real. I do think it speaks of the current time we are in and what some of us experience in our communities.

This is the second book I have read by Joseph Souza and I plan on reading more. He is one of my top psychological thriller authors. If you have not read him, give him a try. I don’t think you will be disappointed.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through NetGalley from Kensington. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

After Anna by Lisa Scottoline

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Pages: 352 (eBook)

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Published: April 10, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Maggie has been married to Dr. Noah for several years and has settled into being wife and mom to Noah’s son, Caleb. In the blink of an eye their lives are changed forever with a single phone call from Maggie’s daughter Anna. A daughter she did not talk about due to losing custody after fighting post partum psychosis. Anna moves in and starts tearing the family apart until one night she is found dead on Noah’s porch and all signs point to him. Can Maggie forgive Noah and move forward or will she believe Noah killed Anna in a fit of rage? Where does the truth lie?

After Anna had me guessing until the very end and I was still in shock as I turned the last page. These stand alone novels are my favorite of Lisa Scottoline’s work but truthfully I don’t think you can read a bad book by her.

This book made me think about what I would do in the situations Maggie found herself in for the past seventeen years. Could I have just walked away after the custody hearing no matter what my ex and his lawyers said? I would like to think I would have fought until my death to be apart of my child’s life no matter my mental illness. Especially when I found myself better after taking time to heal. Could I open my home and life immediately after being away for 17 years with pretty much no questions asked? I find it surprising when spouses make decisions that change the entire family without discussing it with the other spouse. I am not saying don’t take your daughter in but get to know who she is now verses what you remember her being at several months old. Would I believe everything my daughter said about my husband, the man I have been living with for several years? Could I forgive my husband for the transgressions he supposedly did against my daughter? Could I forgive him for murder?

Your heart will be racing faster than you can turn the pages in this emotionally packed novel. If you have a weak heart, take caution, but read the book. You will not regret it. I am already looking forward to her next stand alone novel.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from St. Martin’s Press through NetGalley. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.