Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Blog Tour: Love on a Whim by Aubrey Mace

Review * Giveaway
Love on a Whim by Aubrey Mace

Book Description:

Six months out of law school, Rachel Pearce is completely disillusioned by her job hunt. Despite pounding the pavement with her Ivy League degree in hand, her job prospects are no brighter than the day she graduated. Then in a chance meeting with a former acquaintance, eccentric young millionaire Henry Walker, Rachel finds an unexpected opportunity: Henry is looking for a personal secretary. Swallowing her pride, Rachel sets aside her law firm aspirations for what she envisions as secretarial work—mountains of paperwork and filing. But when she finds her most demanding duty to be daily cookie runs for her new boss, she’s baffled by her unconventional job responsibilities.

As she’s pulled into Henry’s delightful whims, caught in a whirlwind of private jets and fancy dinners, Rachel finds herself inexplicably drawn to this handsome and charismatic man. But reality always has a way of intruding, and logic tells her that this adventure can’t last. When real life inevitably comes calling, Rachel must decide if she’s willing to trade in her dream of success in the courtroom for a chance at love.

Rorie's Review:

This is my kind of romance book. It wasn't too rushed or sappy or cheesy. Both of the main characters were likeable, in spite of - or probably because of - their quirks. (Ok, most of the quirkiness came from Henry, but I found his character very amusing because of it.)

I finished this book in record time, and even though I really enjoyed it, I was left wanting at the end. I'm not sure if it's due to how things happened, or if I just wanted more. Probably the latter. It's hard to let go of characters when you've enjoyed them so much.

All in all, this was a very enjoyable read, and I look forward to reading more from the author.

Andrea's Review:

This book totally hit the spot for me! I can't really put my finger on why I enjoyed it so much, but I devoured it.

I suppose I can start with the outside and work my way in. I think the cover is super cute. I'm not sure that it really tells much about the story, but I guess the two main characters run into each other in a bakery, so maybe that's the inspiration. Whatever the reason, I think it's cute and it would catch my eye on a shelf.

And now to the guts of it. This wasn't really your typical romance novel. Rachel and Henry are a funny pair. There is so much tension between them-Rachel's doing. Their meetings and then working relationship are comical. Except for the times when it's a little frustrating, and then the times when it's . . . swoon worthy? Well, that might be a poor description. But, the outings that only a millionaire could arrange on a whim are the stuff of fairy tales.

Henry did some of the sweetest things for Rachel. She was a bit of a stinker, but I liked how it all worked together.

I'd recommend this book and would read more by Aubrey Mace.

Tarah's Review:

I love Aubrey Mace, and love reading her books over and over again. In fact, after finishing Love on a Whim I had to go back and read Before the Clock Strikes 30 and Santa Maybe (even though it's July...because who doesn't love a Christmas story in the middle of summer?). I was very excited to hear that Rachel and Henry got their own book. After reading 30  I thought those two should get together, because they are both great characters.
Blog Tour Schedule:

*July 27th:,,
*July 28th:,,
*July 29th:,,
*July 30th:,,
*July 31st:,,,

Tour Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Title: Love on a Whim
Author: Aubrey Mace
Publisher: Covenant Communications Inc.
Published: July 2015
ISBN: 1621086216
Source: We received copies from the publisher in exchange for a review.

Purchase: Amazon | Kindle | Deseret Book

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Blog Tour: Annette Lyon Collection

Book Description:

The ANNETTE LYON COLLECTION contains brand new contemporary romance novella OUR SONG, as well as five hand-picked readers’ and reviewers’ favorites of Annette’s popular Timeless Romance Anthology novellas. Readers will love this selection of three contemporary and three historical romance novellas.

In OUR SONG, a charming romance novella, Cassie and Matt have been dating in the Yellowstone area for two years, and things are, well, average. When Cassie meets up with two college friends who are visiting, their love lives like sound like fairy tales: rose petals, chocolates, candles on the beach… Cassie goes home feeling like she’s missing out. After all, repeatedly watching Old Faithful erupt and walking through sulfur-smelling gases at Fountain Paint Pot don’t exactly say “romance.” Maybe things with Matt aren’t going anywhere, and it’s time to move on. Then she discovers that perception and reality are completely different things. Now she can only hope it isn’t too late to show Matt how much she really cares.

In the sweet novella GOLDEN SUNRISE, Natalie takes time out of her crazy schedule to fly to Vegas for her best friend’s wedding. Sierra and Jason, high-school sweethearts, are finally getting married. Fortunately for Natalie, her old high-school flame, Adam, has a work commitment and can’t be there as best man. But when she arrives at the wedding rehearsal—late and ragged—Adam is there. When Adam makes a wild suggestion, Natalie just may take him up on it, even though she knows he’s moved on. A single choice may mean Natalie is taking a shot at reclaiming the past—or that she's putting her heart in harm’s way a second time.

FIRSTS AND LASTS, an enchanting novella, begins with Dani’s last week in New York. She’s failed in her dreams to catch a break as an actress and is now ready to return home and dust herself off. As she visits the places on her final to-see list, she meets Mark, another New York City transplant with big dreams. Except Mark hasn’t given up on his. As they spend the day together, Dani realizes that even though she hasn’t hit the “big time” she might be living her dream after all. Only problem: she has a one-way ticket back home.

In the compelling novella WAR OF HEARTS, Anna, a journalist, is desperate to escape the magazine where Pete, her now-former boyfriend, also works. Heartbroken and still in love with him, Anna snags an assignment to cover the Winter War in Finland. She arrives at a snowy Finnish battlefront only to discover that Pete is already there—as her photographer. She’s determined to be professional about the situation until a battle breaks out in camp, putting her and Pete in harm’s way and putting their love to the test.

The captivating novella BETWEEN THE LINES follows Jane Martin, who is intelligent but extremely shy, especially around men. When the Aid and Cultural Society proposes a letter-writing program, Jane signs up, hoping she can find true friendship. The program doesn’t run as smoothly as expected, and unknown to Jane, one of the men in her city becomes her writing friend. Thomas Allred has always known shy and quiet Jane, but reading her letters written to his secret persona, opens his eyes to what an amazing woman she is. The only trouble is, Jane doesn’t know that the man who she is falling in love with through letters is also Thomas, the man who is falling in love with her in person.

In the charming novella A TASTE OF HOME, we meet Claire Jennings, who’s on her way to spend Christmas with her family. As she rides the train with William Rhodes, who grew up across the street, memories of the past flood her mind. He may be twenty-one now, but she can’t forget his torturous teasing from their school years. At the rail station, Claire discovers her home is under quarantine because her little brother has measles. She's stuck in town, away from her family, on her favorite holiday, with William.


I've read all of the Timeless Romance Anthology collections, so all of the stories in this collection were familiar, except for Annette's new novella, Our Song. This new story is a fun read. It brings out the emotion of thinking what everyone else has is what you want. But, through a cute story, we can see the importance of realizing how great the things are that we already have.

The others stories were fun to read again. I like the characters and the variety of time periods and settings.

If you are looking for some well written, sweet romances, don't miss this collection.

Follow Author Annette Lyon:

Annette's website

Annette's Twitter

Annette's Facebook

Amazon Link


Annette's Author Goodreads page

Blog Tour Schedule:

July 27th

Katie’s Clean Book Collection
Bookworm Lisa
I Love to Read and Review Books

July 28th

Lindzee Armstrong
Literary Time Out
Rachel DeVaughn

July 29th

My Book a Day
Mel’s Shelves

July 30th

Wishful Endings
Singing Librarian Books
Bubble Bath Books

July 31st

Min Reads and Reviews
LDS Women's Book Review
Fire and Ice
Why Not? Because I Said So
Smiling Book Reviews

Friday, July 24, 2015

Book Review: Another Time for Love by Lynne Larson

Book Description: 

Salt Lake County, Present Day
Sam Carroll is living life in the fast lane--sleek cars, nice clothes, and lovely ladies have replaced the gospel values he grew up with, and he's going nowhere fast. But when a serious car accident brings his fun to a screeching halt, Sam is left comatose, aware only of his older brother reading aloud from the hundred-year-old journal of an LDS bishop, Moroni Chadester. As Sam drifts in and out of consciousness, the words begin to take root in his mind . . .
Alpine, Utah, 1915
Standing on a dusty mountain road, Sam is bewildered. The cars are different. The clothes are different. Where and when is he? The answer comes from an impossible source: Bishop Moroni Chadester. Hurtled back in time by forces he can't understand, Sam finds his memories of modern existence quickly fading as he becomes immersed in a new life and a romance with the town beauty, Laney Williams. But as the pair becomes entangled in a murder mystery, the thrill of courtship is replaced by terror as fate conspires to bring the couple into the path of a killer. Little do they realize that the clock is ticking on more than their lives Sam can't stay in the past forever. As danger looms ever closer, Sam must fight to save Laney. But can their love stand the test of time?

Rorie's Review:

Sam is not a very likeable character for the first part of the book. The author doesn't really go into much detail about the kind of life he's living before his accident, only that he isn't living as he should be. After he ends up in 1915, he frequently has thoughts along the lines of "I'm so much better than you because I come from a time when we have great technological inventions." Thankfully, after time passes and he comes to know the people better, he becomes much more humble and likeable.

Throughout the whole book, I kept wondering how the author was going to end the book. Sam had made a really good life for himself back in 1915, but how could he stay there - and was he really even there to begin with? Without giving away any spoilers, the resolution to that issue came about pretty abruptly. I read the last few chapters not sure that I was liking where the story had gone, but thankfully, near the very end, the author "fixed" things. Even still, the whole ending seemed a bit rushed to me.

All in all, I enjoyed the story, although I would have liked more information on what happened to the bad guy in the end.

Tarah's Review:

How to you mix two different time-lines with people from each time, and still get a happily ever after? It's pretty tricky, and the whole book (it's not a long one, and makes for a fast read) I kept wondering how this was going to get resolved.

I'm going to agree with Rorie on this one. The whole book felt a little rushed and maybe a little choppy, and the ending, while it wasn't an ending per-say (because they still have their lives to live) wasn't as satisfying as I wanted it to be.

I enjoyed the growth that Sam experienced (but like Rorie said, he wasn't a very likeable character in the beginning, which is kind of the point of the story), and I liked way certain things like faith were explained. The Bishops character was a great example and fun to read about. I liked how love was explained not just as attraction, but willing to serve the one you love.

I'm not sure that I would recommend it, but it's a clean faith filled book that you wouldn't go wrong in reading. 

Another Time For Love
Title: Another Time For Love
Author: Lynne Larson
Publisher: Covenant Communications
Published: July 2015
ISBN:  1621086887
Source: We received a copy from the publisher in exchange for a review.

Purchase: Amazon Deseret Book

Monday, July 20, 2015

Book Review: In Good Company by Jen Turano

In Good Company (A Class of Their Own, #2)

Book Description:

After spending her childhood in an orphanage, Millie Longfellow is determined to become the best nanny the East Coast has ever seen. Unfortunately, her playfulness and enthusiasm tend to bring about situations that have employers looking askance at her methods. After her most recent dismissal, Millie is forced to return yet again to an employment agency.

Everett Mulberry has suddenly and quite unexpectedly found himself responsible for three children he’s never met. Attempting fatherhood while also pacifying the less-than-thrilled socialite he intends to marry is made even more complicated when the children scare off every nanny he hires. About to depart for Newport, Rhode Island, for the summer, he’s desperate for competent childcare.

At wit’s end with both Millie and Everett, the employment agency gives them one last chance–with each other. Everett is wary of Millie’s penchant for disaster, and she’s not entirely keen on another snobby, grumpy employer, but they’re both out of options. As Millie falls in love with her mischievous charges and tries to stay one step ahead of them, Everett is more focused on achieving the coveted status of society’s upper echelons. As he investigates the suspicious circumstances surrounding the children’s parents’ death, will it take the loss of those he loves to learn whose company he truly wants for the rest of his life?

Book Review:

Hahahaha. Peacocks, flour, children, and a thoroughly practical and fun Millie. Maybe practical isn't the best way to describe her, but I love how she explains her situations very straight forward:

"What about little Billy? I distinctly remember you telling me you almost drowned him." 

"You're forgetting the story. It is true that I was a little misinformed about how children can learn to swim, but if you'll recall, after tossing little Billy into the water, I had second thoughts and jumped in after him. He proved that I wasn't completely off the mark, since he immediately paddled to shore - whereas I promptly sank." 

 Oh, it just makes me laugh. Add to that Millie's propensity to looking up words she doesn't know and mixing them up in daily conversation, it just makes for a fun awesome read.

This book has all the classic Jen Turano marks. Strong females, clueless males that become less clueless as time goes on, animals of some sort, and loads of humor. While this is book two, and we were introduced to both characters in the first book, I don't think you'd be completely lost if you just dove into this book. It will be more enjoyable, however, if you read the first one first.

All in all I can't wait for the third book to come out. If it's anything like this one, I'm definitely in for a good time.

In Good Company (A Class of Their Own, #2)

Title: In Good Company
Author: Jen Turano
Publisher: Bethany House
Published: July 2015
ISBN:  0764212761
Source: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for a review.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Blog Tour: Stick in the Mud Meets Spontaneity by Rachael Anderson

Stick in the Mud Meets Spontaneity
(Meet Your Match #3)
by Rachael Anderson 

Book Description:

Home from college for the summer, Samantha Kinsey steps into her role as nanny for her two favorite little charges. But when she finds herself playing chauffeur more than playmate, her summer outlook quickly turns from fun to bleak. That is, until she drives the girls to a family-owned ranch and meets Colten McCoy—a genuine, hard-working cowboy, who's as set in his ways as he is handsome. Although he claims he doesn't need any fun in his life, Sam’s determined to help him find it. But she'll soon discover that cowboys are about as easy to train as wild mustangs. Stick in the Mud Meets Spontaneity is about an adaptable girl and a not so adaptable guy. It’s about learning to accept people for who they are and realizing that sometimes who they are is exactly who they should be.

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Andrea's Review:

I enjoyed the other books in this series, and Rachael always writes a fun, clean romance, so I was excited to read Stick in the Mud Meets Spontaneity. Although it was cute, it wasn't my favorite of Rachael's books. The setting was fun, and the characters were pretty likable. It just didn't strike me as very memorable. Or maybe it was Sam that didn't really bring the story home for me. She wasn't bad, but I think I may have been put off with  how she handled the situation with Colten. Having a life plan, and following through with your goals is very admirable, I guess it just seemed like Colten sort of got the shaft. It worked out in the end though. I'll read more of Rachael's books.

Tarah's Review:

I'm going to agree with Andrea on this one. I think my biggest thing was that I never really felt that Sam and Colten meshed. I loved both of the characters, and their personalities. Sam is super fun loving and creative, and Colten is hard working and practical. While compromise was mentioned in the story, it seemed like it was always Colten giving instead of both of them, especially at the end.

Don't get me wrong. It's a super cute story that I'll read again, and definitely read more from this author, it just didn't hit me the way the others in the series did. Oh, and if you haven't read the others in the series, it isn't needed. This could definitely be a stand-alone book, but it's definitely more fun if you read them all so you understand completely the dynamics of everyone and why they act like they do. Speaking of which...I think I'll go start this series over. I'm looking for something fun to read and this series definitely hits the mark. 

About the Author:
RachaelUSA Today bestselling author, Rachael Anderson is the mother of four and is pretty good at breaking up fights, or at least sending guilty parties to their rooms. She can't sing, doesn't dance, and despises tragedies. But she recently figured out how yeast works and can now make homemade bread, which she is really good at eating.
Meet Your Match

$50 Book Blast Giveaway:

Enter to win an Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 7/31/15
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Stick in the Mud meets spontaneityTitle: Stick in the Mud Meets Spontaneity
Author: Rachael Anderson
Publisher: HEA Publishing
Published: June 2015
Source: We received an eCopy via the Tour host in exchange for a review.

Purchase: Amazon

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Book Review: A Splash of Kindness by John Starley Allen


Book Description:
Great things begin with the smallest acts of goodness. These incredible, true stories began with a simple thought or action from another and became so much more. Be inspired by dedicated teachers, encouraging friends, and random acts of kindness. You don't need a high-powered title to make a profound impact. This book is guaranteed to remind you how your own compassion, courage, and character can change the world! "A wonderful set of stories that will cause you to examine the ripples you have caused." --Richard M. Siddoway, New York Times bestselling author of "The Christmas Wish" and "The Cottage Park Puzzle" "It's reassuring to be reminded of how simple expressions of character can influence lives for generations." --Caralyn and Mark Buehner, New York Times bestselling creators of "Fanny's Dream" and the Snowmen series

Rorie's Review:

This isn't the kind of book that you sit down and read in one sitting. Instead, this is one where you read one story at a time. It was interesting to read stories about famous people, such as Philo T. Farnsworth, who I have heard of, but really didn't know that much about. My favorite stories were the personal ones, though, mostly because they seemed a bit easier to relate to, but also because some of the longer stories tended to drag on a little bit.

This book makes you think about how you interact with other people every day, and how just a small act can greatly change someone else's life for better or for worse.

 Title:  A Splash of Kindness
Author: John Starley Allen
Publisher: Cedar Fort
Published: May 2015
ISBN:  1462116337
We received copies of this book in exchange for a review
Purchase: Amazon


Monday, July 13, 2015

Book Review: Worth Waiting For by Sally Johnson

Worth Waiting For by Sally Johnson

Book Description:

Sophia thought she was over her broken heart, but the news that her roommate has eloped with Sophia's ex-husband hits her like a ton of bricks. She knows she should be fine with the unexpected revelation—after all, her boyfriend, Luke, is incredible, but it would seem her heart is not as resilient as she thought. And as Luke prepares to leave for his European study abroad, Sophia's feelings of fear and inadequacy threaten to overwhelm her. 

A summer with her family in Las Vegas gives Sophia the time she needs, but she still can't shake the questions haunting her, the questions that continually threaten to put more than physical distance between Luke and her. Is she really ready to jump into a new relationship when the last one ended so painfully? Will her divorce always define her? Is she the one with the problem?

As she wistfully observes others' love stories blossoming around her, Sophia must decide whether she's prepared to take another chance on love. Luke's return from Europe forces Sophia to confront the decision she's not sure she's prepared for—will her troubled past destroy the happy ending of which she's always dreamed?

Rorie's Review:

I binge-read this book and finished it the same day that I started it. Granted, it's not very long, but let's just say the dishes didn't get washed that night. :) I would definitely classify this book as mind candy.

Sophia was a likeable character, and so was her boyfriend Luke. There could have been a bit more character development with them, but that wasn't detrimental to the story.

During the book, Sophia has several times when she's hit with an epiphany about how she is acting around Luke, and why she is still carrying the baggage of her failed marriage around, however, immediately after having these epiphanies, she reverts back to her usual self, not trusting that her relationship with Luke is really as good and solid as it seems to be. While I kind of wanted to smack her upside the head each time, I also realized that's how life is. For example, I know that I eat too much sugar. I know that when I don't have dessert every night, I feel much better. However, most nights you can find me thoroughly enjoying some sweet treat that I'll regret later. Us human beings are just slow learners I guess. :)

There was one part in the book when Sophia went back home for the summer and she starts working for an old friend of hers. When she first mentions the friend, it seemed like there was an important backstory there, but we never find out what it is, or if there even is one. Every time Sophia would be around the friend, I found myself wondering if I had completely missed a part of the story.

Again, a very enjoyable, very quick read. I recommend it.

Andrea's Review:

Worth Waiting For is a quick and cute read. I'll admit that I wasn't immediately drawn in by the book description I read (not the same as what is printed on the book-what I read mentioned the main character's age and it threw me a bit given her situation); however, I'm glad I had some time between the review copy arriving and having read that blurb. The book is a light and easy story with plenty of humor.

Bits of the story felt familiar right off, and after awhile it came to me that I'd read another book by this author called The Skeleton in My Closet Wears a Wedding Dress. This is a continuation of that story. While Worth Waiting For stands on its own pretty well, I was glad to have had the backstory.

I was a bit frustrated with Sophia and how she handled her relationship with Luke. There wouldn't have been much of a story if she'd just been able to move on after her first marriage ended like it did, but I was glad when she finally saw the light.

If you are looking for a quick, clean read this summer, checkout Worth Waiting For.

Blog Tour Schedule:

*July 13th:,,
*July 14th:,,,
*July 15th:,,,
*July 16th:,,

About the Author:

Unlike Sophia, Sally Johnson is not tall, blonde, or divorced. She grew up in Massachusetts and received her bachelor's degree in English from Brigham Young University. She and her husband, Steve, have four children and currently live in Las Vegas (but sadly not in a hotel). She has always had an overactive imagination and has finally found a way to put it to good use. 

Tour Giveaway:

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Title:  Worth Waiting For
Author: Sally Johnson
Publisher: Covenant Communications
Published: July 2015
ISBN:  1680472402
Source: We received copies from the publisher in exchange for a review

Purchase:  Amazon | Deseret Book 

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Book Tour: The Haunting of Springett Hall by E.B Wheeler

The Haunting of Springett Hall

Book Description:

Eighteen-year-old Lucy doesn’t know how she became a ghost, but the more she remembers of her life in Victorian England, the more she wants to forget. Her only hope of changing the mistakes of her past is to enlist the help of a servant named Philip—the one living person who can see her. This impossible romance story is filled with delightful period detail and plenty of mystery.
Book Review:

I loved this book! It was not at all what I expected and I was really distressed that I didn't have the time to devour it like I normally might have. Every time I had to put it down I groaned and inwardly complained about the other things I had to do instead.

Normally books about black magic and summonings and things make me super uncomfortable, and I generally steer clear of them.  I can't figure out how exactly this book didn't make me uncomfortable. Maybe it was just the mystery of everything, or that a lot of the dark stuff was past tense, or...I don't know.  It was just a well written book, that I'd highly recommend.

I will say that I was a bit disappointed with the ending. Maybe I'm growing used to my ending being wrapped up in a pretty little bow, and this wasn't like that, but for me even the not as satisfying ending wasn't enough to ruin the book for me, and honestly, if you knew me at all you would know that endings are kind of make it or break it for me, so I can only conclude that it must have been a great book :)

The Haunting of Springett Hall

Title:  The Haunting of Springett Hall
Author: E.B. Wheeler
Publisher: Cedar Fort
Published: July 2015
ISBN:  9781462116720
Source: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for a review. 

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Spotlight: Picture Mr. Perfect by Laura Briggs and Sarah Burgess

Picture Mr. Perfect by Laura Briggs and Sarah Burgess

On sale July 7th-July 13th for just $0.99!

Book Description:

Jason Barry’s no hero, although he does hope to change the world one day by helping people once he finally earns his master’s degree in psychology. When his scholarship is unexpectedly revoked, however, Jason takes on a temporary modeling gig for money to help pay the bills, never dreaming it’ll land him on the cover of a best-selling romance novel – and transform him from the boy-next-door to a hot literary hunk almost overnight.

Suddenly, women recognize Jason as the face of sexy ‘Lord Damon’ everywhere he goes, making him the envy and admiration of his male friends. But as covers featuring him as everything from a swashbuckling hero to Mr. Darcy himself causes his celebrity status to explode, Jason struggles to balance his academic pursuits, as well as his deepening attraction for Emily, a waitress and part-time student at his university.

Emily is definitely unimpressed by Jason’s literary alter-ego. But can the real Jason convince her there’s more to him than meets the eye? Or will bigger issues prevent their happy-ever-after, when certain truths between them challenge the definition of a real hero?

About the Author:

Laura Briggs graduated from a Missouri liberal arts college in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. Her first published work was Only in Novels, a short romance story from Pelican Book Group. Among her independently published works are a series of wedding-themed romances, as well as Jane Austen-inspired fiction. 

Monday, July 6, 2015

CD Review: What Heaven Feels Like by Calee Reed

Calee Reed makes her mark as a thoughtful and exciting new voice in spiritual and inspirational music with this beautiful follow-up to her debut album. Her folk pop sound is the perfect backdrop to gorgeous vocals and soaring melody lines. The title track, “What Heaven Feels Like,” stands out with a tender description of the lasting relationships we forge in this life that remain through the life to come. In the song “Possible,” Calee writes from an authentic place of joy as she reflects on God’s ability to extend our efforts beyond what we thought was possible. This album will help you see and enjoy more in life. It’s the perfect album to keep you dancing and singing through the summer.

Track List:

Living Water
I Am Enough
What Heaven Feels Like
Come Unto Christ

Andrea's Review:

I had the opportunity to see Calee Reed perform at Time Out for Women earlier this year. She has a beautiful voice and did a great job performing. I think having some background to some of her songs made a difference as I heard them on this CD. The lyrics are beautiful, and there is a fun sound to her songs. I've listened to it several times, and my only complaint would be that it ends so quickly. Not that you can't hit shuffle and repeat, but the less-than-thirty-minutes play list goes by pretty quickly. It is hard to pick a favorite song-it's a toss up between "Living Water" and "What Heaven Feels Like".

Rorie's Review:

Listening to this CD, I kept comparing Calee's sound to Colbie Caillat. I think if you like Colbie, you will enjoy this CD. I enjoyed most of the songs on this CD, although I was driving, so I wasn't really paying much attention to the lyrics. I think my favorite song was probably "Living Water," mostly for its upbeat tempo. My older boys were listening to the CD as well and both of them said that they enjoyed it. I plan on having it in rotation in my car, or even for music on Sunday, and look forward to actually getting a chance to pay attention to the lyrics, not just the music and the sound of Calee's voice.

Tarah's Review:

I'll admit that when I think of spiritual and inspirational music I think of something less jazzy. Calee has a great voice, and there is no denying her talent. None of the songs really struck the right chord with me though. None made me want to listen to them again, and think on their message. I was actually surprised by the pop/jazzy sound and had to take the CD out to make sure I was listening to the right music. Just don't expect calming, soothing sounds and you will probably enjoy this CD more than I did.


Amazon | Deseret Book

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Book Review: The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest by Melanie Dickerson

The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest

Book Description:

Swan Lake" meets Robin Hood when the beautiful daughter of a wealthy merchant by day becomes the region's most notorious poacher by night, and falls in love with the forester.

Jorgen is the forester for the wealthy margrave, and must find and capture the poacher who has been killing and stealing the margrave's game. When he meets the lovely and refined Odette at the festival and shares a connection during a dance, he has no idea she is the one who has been poaching the margrave's game.

Odette justifies her crime of poaching because she thinks the game is going to feed the poor, who are all but starving, both in the city and just outside its walls. But will the discovery of a local poaching ring reveal a terrible secret? Has the meat she thought she was providing for the poor actually been sold on the black market, profiting no one except the ring of black market sellers?

The one person Odette knows can help her could also find out her own secret and turn her over to the margrave, but she has no choice. Jorgen and Odette will band together to stop the dangerous poaching ring . . . and fall in love. But what will the margrave do when he discovers his forester is protecting a notorious poacher?

Book Review:

As a fan of Melanie Dickerson's other novels, I couldn't wait for this one to come out. Robin Hood was my favorite cartoon growing up, and Swan Lake wasn't bad either. I'm still trying to figure out how Swan Lake becomes a part of this story though. I mean, besides her name. Maybe it was just the version of the cartoon I saw years and years ago, but really, other than the name I'm not picking up any Swan Lakeness. I got the Robin Hood vibe though. One of my favorite things about Melanie Dickerson is how she retells well loved fairy tales.

While this wasn't my favorite of her books (Odette didn't do much for me), it is worth a read if you like this genre. Jorgen is a great character, and I liked how Odette went back and forth about doing the wrong thing for the right reasons.  Really though, nothing about the book stands out as super memorable. I read it months ago, and can't remember those fun little details that tells me it was a great book.

Overall this was a clean Christian Fiction written for a slightly younger audience than her normal books.

The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest
Title: The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest
Author: Melanie Dickerson
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Published: May 2015
ISBN:  0718026241
Source: I received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for a review.