Review: Somebody Like You (Darling, VT #1) by Donna Alward

Somebody Like You (Darling, VT #1)

Somebody Like You (Darling, VT #1)

by Donna Alward

Purchased from Amazon

Published: February 7th 2017

I rate this book:

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Synopsis:

A kiss to last a lifetime

Aiden Gallagher was only five years old when he appeared in a photograph on the Kissing Bridge. The town of Darling, Vermont, has used Aiden’s image on the famed bridge—local legend has it that a kiss there results in everlasting love—as part of its tourism campaign. Now, twenty years later, Aiden is asked to recreate the moment with the woman he once kissed: Laurel Stone.

Recently divorced, there’s nothing Laurel wants less than to pretend happily-ever-after with Aiden. As teenagers, their romance was no fairy tale—and Laurel has never quite forgiven Aiden for breaking her heart. But now that she is back in her hometown, and keeps bumping into police officer Aiden, Laurel can’t deny that there’s still a strong flicker between her and her old flame. Could it be that the Kissing Bridge is working its magic on Laurel and Aiden—and that all true love ever needed was a second chance?

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Review:

I am such a sucker for small town romances and this book by Ms. Alward hit all the right notes for me. I enjoyed the journey that the two main characters (Laurel Stone and Aiden Gallagher) went through to get their HEA in the end.

Laurel and Aiden have a history. Aiden has always had a thing for Laurel but after making a bad decision in regards to her when they were in high school, something Laurel could not forgive, they both moved on with their lives. That is until Laurel moved back to her hometown after her divorce. Now with trouble happing at her garden shop and with Aiden being a police officer. they are running into each other more and more.

This is a laid back, easy to enjoy story. As a start of a new series I am now eagerly anticipating the next book to see what happens next in this darling small town…

Bible Journaling: Week 7

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Hello all! Well  had a pretty good week. Took the three hour long gestational diabetes test and I passed! Yeah! Before we know it May will be here and so will our newest blessing!

This weekend I am taking it easy. My oldest daughter is sick and my youngest is just now feeling more like herself. Praying this coming week we will all be well.

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My last page in Exodus! I think that would have been the coolest thing to see. A cloud (that you know is God Himself) over the tabernacle during the day and at night it was a cloud filled with fire. How could you see that and not believe in Him??

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For my first page in Leviticus I did polka dots with distress ink.  I also had a sweet surprise: @underhisfeathers  on Instagram added me to her #followfriday post. That was so nice of her!

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Just played around with this verse. I had no real direction, I was just talking to Him and my kids kept popping in to see what I was doing…

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I used a gold paint pen and wow does it shine! It really helps make this drawing of a book look nice.

Went by Hobby Lobby last night and found this beautiful silver dish. Perfect for my wet paint brushes!

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I found out this week that NavPress is giving away a The Message Canvas Bible each week. Just go to this website to learn more: http://themessagecanvas.com/color-to-win/

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Earlier this week I reviewed these Elves Dolphin Colored Pencils Set of 72 with Tin Case. These pencils are pretty good especially for the price!

If you have any questions or suggestions about my Bible Journaling please feel free to leave me a comment!

I hope you enjoy this journey with me this year. If you want to join in leave me a link to your blog, Pinterest or Instagram page where you have your Bible Journaling pages and I will be happy to check them out and leave them some love!

I am also linked up at:

Kids, Crunch, and Christ Journal Through The Bible

Supplies I used this week are listed below:

 

$50 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway: Sketchy Tacos by Meg D. Gonzalez

  sketchy-TacosSketchy Tacos by Meg D. Gonzalez

Teenage artist Mila Gulick travels to Mexico to get away from warring influences and find herself. But life in the land of tacos is a far cry from her sheltered life back home. Mila must find the courage to step out from behind her sketchbook and get to know the people and culture around her. While her host family and the two boys vying for her interest are nothing but smiles, all may not be as it seems. Soon Mila is questioning her choices and the beliefs she’s held dear. Her heart, her art, and even her safety are at risk as she struggles to find a balance between cultural differences, old assumptions, and strange romance. Will her trip end in disaster or will she find the strength for which she’s been searching? amazon Praise for the Book

“This modern coming-of-age story has it all – humor, heart, genuine characters, and spiritual depth. I highly recommend it to teen readers.” – Krista McGee, Inspy Award winning author of First Date and Starring Me “Meg D. Gonzalez gives us a vivid look at life for an American teenager in Mexico and an even clearer picture of what happens when you decide to embrace who God made you to be. No matter what. Great first novel. Great read.” – Nancy Rue, Christy Award winning author of the Real Life series add to goodreads

Excerpt

 Leaning forward, I hide my hot cheeks behind a veil of wavy, brown hair Rosa somehow coaxed straight. As he pushes my bangs behind my ear, his fingertips brush my skin. I suppress a shiver. His hand lingers behind my neck. Lightning skitters across my skin. “Qué bonita,” he murmurs, leaning forward. Pretty. He called me pretty. Is this for real? With a slight sway, I find myself closing the distance. My body reacts to instincts I didn’t know I possessed. Then I freeze. What if I’m a horrible kisser? Rosa’s friends are a chatty group. What if I’m terrible, and I turn into the laughing stock of her entire social circle? I’d be alone the rest of the summer. Or I’d have to flee the country and return to Mom. I swing away. “What’s wrong?” His breath tickles my nose, minty fresh. “Nothing.” Heat flames from my forehead to my fingertips. Think. Think! Come up with something coy, something cute. My chin raises. I quirk one corner of my lips. “I’m just not that easy.”   Meg

 

Author Meg D. Gonzalez Meg D. Gonzalez is a tea-sipping, adventure-seeking, pug-loving kind of girl. She’s crazy for God and wants to share His love with awesome young women around the globe. She started her first novel at the age of fourteen (it will never see the light of day and that’s best for everyone), but her writing really came alive two years ago after she moved to Mexico. The crazy, wonderful people and culture she encountered inspired the story of Sketchy Tacos. When she’s not writing, she’s learning to play video games with her husband (she’s horrible), taking hikes in beautiful parks with her pug Pascal, crocheting, and watching way too much TV.

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Pinterest * Instagram

  amazon paypalBlast Giveaway $50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Ends 3/5/17 Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com 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. a Rafflecopter giveaway

Elves Dolphin Colored Pencils Set of 72 with Tin Case

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Elves Dolphin 72 No Duplicates Colors Pack Art Drawing Colored Pencils Set with Tin Case

Purchased from Amazon

Details:

  • MULTIPLE COLORS – 72 Unique Accurate Vibrant Colors Pencils, Wide Color Gamut, Finding and Laying Down Any Color From The Vast Choice Easily, Ideal For Both Adults and Children.
  • PROFESSIONAL LEAD – 3.0mm Durable Lead Gives You Smooth and Uninterrupted Coloring, Premium Quality Materials Give Color-Intensive Results, Perfect Choice For Drawing Sketching Blending and Other Mixed Media Work.
  • SHARPEN EASILY – Sophisticated Wood Softening Process, Soft Wood with Solid Lead Makes Sharpening without Effort.
  • CONVENIENT PACKAGE – Two-Tier Designed Storage, Easy to Choosing or Replacing Your Color; Sturdy Tin Case, Protect the Pencils Well.
  • PERFECT GUARANTEE – Every of Our Products Promise 90-DAY Products Exchange or Full Money Back Guarantee.

 

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As you know I love trying out different colored pencils. Each set I have tried (and use) is slightly different and I love that. This set of 72 colored pencils by Elves Dolphin come in a tin storage box. The box is a bit flimsy so extra care needs to be taken when moving it around.

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These pencils are split up on to two flimsy plastic trays.

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CONS:

-One of the pencils arrived missing some of its lead. It is not in the box so it was put into the box without the lead. Another pencil is missing the very point of its lead. Not a deal breaker but just a bit of an annoyance.

There are no names, no numbers, nothing to use to tell apart these pencils from one another. Some of the colors are really similar so a name or a number would have been very helpful.

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While these are not a high quality colored pencils, they are also not low quality either. They are on the lower end of middle quality.

What I am saying is that they are easy to use, comfortable to hold and the colors blended nicely when I use Gamsol. In other words – I won’t be giving this set to my kids to use!

The picture above you can see what they look like unblended. The picture below was take after I blended all the colors.

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Do you see the difference blending does? Below is an up close picture of the honey dipper. I am very please with how it looks when blended.

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These are great colored pencils to color in when you want to color in a coloring book. I hope you enjoyed seeing how these pencils work.

**Supplies used for this review were purchased from Amazon:

A Garland of Grace: An Inspirational Adult Coloring Book Featuring the Proverbs

Gamblin Gamsol Odorless Mineral Spirits Bottle, 4.2oz
Stumps And Tortillions Set – 2 PACK

Review: On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins

On Second Thought

On Second Thought

by Kristan Higgins

Purchased from Amazon

Published: January 31st 2017

I rate this book:

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Synopsis:

Ainsley O’Leary is so ready to get married—she’s even found the engagement ring her boyfriend has stashed away. What she doesn’t anticipate is being blindsided by a breakup he chronicles in a blog…which (of course) goes viral. Devastated and humiliated, Ainsley turns to her older half sister, Kate, who’s struggling with a sudden loss of her own.

Kate’s always been the poised, self-assured sister, but becoming a newlywed—and a widow—in the space of four months overwhelms her. Though the sisters were never close, she starts to confide in Ainsley, especially when she learns her late husband was keeping a secret from her.

Despite the murky blended-family dynamic that’s always separated them, Ainsley’s and Kate’s heartaches bind their summer together when they come to terms with the inevitable imperfection of relationships and family—and the possibility of one day finding love again.

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Review:

I will admit the two reasons I picked up this book was the cover (I love purple tulips) and the author (I love Kristan Higgins). I didn’t read the synopsis which is not normally something I do. I just knew based on who the author is and the lovely cover that I would enjoy this book.

I was right.

I honestly hate books the switch between characters each chapter yet Ms. Higgins made it work. We get a chance not only to see what each sister is going through but we also see how they view their sister’s own life and struggles. In the end these two not only become stronger sisters they also become more like friends. It is sad, it is sweet and at time humorous they life these two unique women live but it is all relatable. By the time the book was over I could see myself wanting to be friends with both Kate and Ainsley.

I started reading On Second Thought on a Saturday afternoon and by 2:00 am the next morning I had finished their journey. This is one book I found difficult to put down and I think you will as well.

Giveaway: Sweet Southern Hearts by Susan Schild

 
Sweet Southern Hearts
Author: Susan Schild
Publisher: Lyrical Press

Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction

 

Susan Schild welcomes you back to the offbeat Southern town of Willow Hill, North Carolina, for a humorous, heartwarming story of new beginnings, do-overs, and self-discovery…


When it comes to marriage, third time’s the charm for Linny Taylor. She’s thrilled to be on her honeymoon with Jack Avery, Willow Hill’s handsome veterinarian. But just like the hair-raising white water rafting trip Jack persuades her to take, newlywed life has plenty of dips and bumps.
 
Jack’s twelve-year-old son is resisting all Linny’s efforts to be the perfect stepmother, while her own mother, Dottie, begs her to tag along on the first week of a free-wheeling RV adventure. Who knew women “of a certain age” could drum up so much trouble? No sooner is Linny sighing with relief at being back home than she’s helping her frazzled sister with a new baby…and dealing with an unexpected legacy from her late ex. Life is fuller—and richer—than she ever imagined, but if there’s one thing Linny’s learned by now, it’s that there’s always room for another sweet surprise…

 
 
 
 
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Susan has an undergraduate degree from James Madison University and a master’s degree (MSW) from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has used her professional background as a psychotherapist and corporate trainer to add authenticity to her characters.

Susan is a wife, a stepmother, and a dog lover. She and her family live near Raleigh, North Carolina where she is busy finishing up the third novel in the Willow Hill Series.

 
 
 
 
 
 

$10 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway: The Outlaw’s Secret By Stacy Henrie

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Book Tour Grand Finale for
The Outlaw’s Secret
By Stacy Henrie
 
We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops, go back and check them out…
Launch – Note from the Author

I’m so excited to introduce readers to the Becketts brothers—one a lawman, the other an outlaw—in my next two books releasing from Love Inspired Historical. In THE OUTLAW’S SECRET, you’ll meet Tate Beckett, a Pinkerton detective posing as his outlaw twin brother Tex. You’ll also meet Essie Vanderfair, a dime novelist in need of a great story. And she hopes to find it when she begs to go along with the gang of train robbers that Tate has infiltrated. These opposites-attract characters were so much fun to write as were the outlaws Essie meets and interviews.

Bookworm Lisa – Review

“There were several instances that brought a smile to my face and I wanted how to know they were going to get out of the mess they were in. This is a fun book that is set in the “Old West”. There are outlaws, lawmen, and a feisty heroine.”

Rockin’ Book Reviews – Review & Interview

“This was a fun book. The characters were likable and flawed just enough.”

Q: What other genre, one day, would you like to write? Why or why not?

A: Though I’ve tried my hand at writing contemporary, I enjoy writing historicals much more. I’ve also dabbled with the idea of writing historical women’s fiction, but I love a good love story so I don’t know that I could pull off writing something without having a romance at its heart.

“I love a romance that makes me swoon and this one does just that. Not only are the romance and characters well done, the setting is fantastic too. I felt myself transported back to the late 1800s and loved being a part of that time–when I wasn’t shivering in my boots with fear. I also really enjoyed Essie’s writing moments, which are often thoughts–she’s an interesting character with a vivid imagination and has me engrossed in her ideas. I’m definitely looking forward to what this author writes next!”

Hearts & Scribbles – Meet Tate and Essie
 

Born and raised in Idaho, Tate Beckett is an identical twin. But his brown hair and blue eyes are about the only thing he shares with his brother Tex. Tate’s brother is the infamous outlaw known as the Texas Titan and Tate feels duty-bound to atone for his brother’s crimes by tracking down other outlaws in his job as a Pinkerton detective agent…

“The Outlaw’s Secret has it all – action, adventure, romance, humor, faith and depth. It will make you smile and it will twist your heart too. It will make you hold your breath – for the kisses and again for the nail-biting action. Essie is such a fun heroine, and Tate is most definitely swoonworthy. Another fun and sweet novel by Stacy Henrie that I highly recommend!”

I Am A Reader – Undisguised: the Pinkerton National Detective Agency
 

While operatives were required to abide by a code of ethics—including things like not accepting reward money and working with local law enforcement—Allen Pinkerton was a staunch believer in the end justifying the means. That meant that sometimes in order for an operative to track down a criminal, the detective might have to “become” a criminal in a sense—just as Tate does by posing as his outlaw twin brother in order do to bring down the Fletcher gang.

“There’s nothing typical about Stacy Henrie’s newest release and she has become one of my favorite writers in the Love Inspired line. The Outlaw’s Secret has it all – character depth, humor, romance, suspense, and rich historical detail. It’s well written, entertaining, and refreshingly unusual in storyline.”

“On the romance side, it’s fun to watch Tate/Tex and Essie dance around each other, both mistrusting in turn and each fiercely determined to follow their own goals. Their journey includes moments of danger, threats to budding feelings, and a few twists.”

Kathleen Denly – Interview

Q: As an author, I often get asked how much of myself I put into my characters. So I’m curious, if you were on that train instead of Essie, how would you handle the situation?

A: I would’ve been terrified! And unlike Essie, I would have chosen to stay seated and silent and hopefully unseen.

“This was such a fun adventure. The story started off with a bang and took off from there. I settled right in and enjoyed the ride!”

Wishful Endings – Excerpt
 

Tate Beckett’s jaw was clenched so tight he thought it might snap. Of all the rotten misfortune. He had to run into a nosy, busybody like Miss Essie Vanderfair on his first job with Fletcher’s gang. If he wasn’t careful, this woman, with all her probing questions, would figure out he wasn’t the Texas Titan after all. Then his covert work, posing as his outlaw twin brother, would be finished.

Mel’s Shelves – Review

“Once I started reading this book, I settled in and didn’t want to put it down. It moves at a fast pace and there was never a dull moment. I enjoyed it from beginning to end and highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good, clean western romance!”

Falling Leaves – Excerpt

Fletcher’s mouth curled up in a sneer. “Try me, Tex.” He lifted his hands in a mock gesture of innocence. “But now your life is tied with hers.” He walked away, adding over his shoulder, “I think you’re smart enough to figure out what that means.”


“Stacie Henry has masterfully written a story that readers will be enthralled with from page one until the very end. This is a fairly quick and easy read that will inspire the romance in all of us! Henry has a distinct way of writing that will draw readers in as they leave the world of reality behind and enter the enjoyable and entertaining world of the Wild West.”

Colorimetry – Excerpt

Sure enough she spotted the impression of horse hooves in the dirt and a partially trampled sagebrush farther on. If she kept heading in that same direction, she would eventually stumble into the trio.

She bent forward over the horse and coaxed it to go faster. There were interviews to conduct. And no one, not even a handsome, sly, back-stabbing Texan, was going to stop her.

Q: Is there anything you would like to say to your fans or readers?

A: Thanks for your support! I’m excited to share Tate and Essie’s story with you. If you read it and enjoy it, then look for Tex’s story in July, when you’ll find out where the Texas Titan was while Tate was impersonating him to take down Fletcher’s gang.

“The Outlaw’s Secret delivers humor, romance, faith, and some wonderfully exciting moments where death is only a step away from both hero and heroine. . . . Fans of Stacy Henrie and of western historicals will surely not be disappointed in the thrilling pages. . .”

Heidi Reads… – Review
 

“I was glued to the pages to find out when Essie would discover Tate’s secret, when they would give in to the chemistry building between them, and if the real Tex would make an appearance. Another great western from Stacy Henrie with suspense, action, and romance!”

Her heart beat faster as she opened her mouth and said, “Call me Essie. It’s only fair.”

A low chuckle sounded in her ears. “Try to get some sleep, Essie. We’ve got another long ride tomorrow.”


Smiling in triumph, she closed her eyes, but it was still some time later before she could turn her thoughts from the silent figure guarding the camp. And from the memory of her name on those nice, masculine lips.
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven’t already…
The Outlaw’s Secret
by Stacy Henrie
Christian Historical Romance

Paperback & ebook, 288 pages
February 7th 2017 by Love Inspired Historical

 

Lawman in Disguise

Getting taken hostage by a gang of train robbers wasn’t in dime novelist Essie Vanderfair’s plans, but interviewing these men could make her career soar. Especially since the gang includes legendary outlaw Tex Beckett, better known as the Texas Titan. Tex is famed for his protection of women and children, so she’ll be fine…right?

Keeping the gang in line was hard enough before a stubborn, beautiful writer interfered. Now Tex is scrambling to keep Essie safe, to gather evidence against the gang and most of all to hide his dangerous secrets. First, that he’s a detective working undercover. And second, that he’s not the Texas Titan at all, but Tex’s twin brother, Tate Beckett.

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Stacy Henrie is the author of western romances and the Of Love and War series, which includes Hope at Dawn, a 2015 RITA Award finalist for excellence in romance. She was born and raised in the West, where she currently resides with her family. She enjoys reading, road trips, interior decorating, chocolate, and most of all, laughing with her husband and kids. You can learn more about Stacy and her books by visiting her website at stacyhenrie.com.

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Tour Giveaway

– 1 winner will receive print copies of LADY OUTLAW and THE EXPRESS RIDER’S LADY + $10 Amazon Gift Card (US only)
– 1 winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card (open internationally)
– Ends February 18th

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