Friday, August 19, 2016

Coyote by Kelly Oliver

★★★★ ☐ The publisher has provided a copy for review.
This book kept surprising me as I turned the pages. When it was over, I felt a bit stunned by the action, twists, and turns. Set in quiet country, I expected relaxation and fun. Instead, the story gripped me and pulled me into issues of the day.

Oliver comments on the social and moral dilemma of human trafficking while delivering a great story. Highly recommended for those interested in social justice, fighting for environmental accountability, for readers who enjoy a mystery, and others who deal with racial prejudice.

Florence Grace by Tracy Rees

★★★★★  The publisher provided a copy for review
From the moors to the city, staying true to yourself and what you love can be difficult. Let's just say that Rees has a way with stories.

This novel sucked me in and kept me reading to the end. I fell in love with the descriptions, the people, and this tale of rags-to-riches ... with-complications. I was sorry to see the last page.

Recommended for readers who want to get to know the characters, for those with an eye for detail, and for those who want a great story. I'll read it again in case I missed something the first time.

Sweet Taffy and Murder by Dana Moss

★★★☐☐ The publisher has provided a copy for review.
A spin on the rich spoiled girl and hunky handyman - but good fun nonetheless. The cute heroine Taffy (yup, sappy name) shows up in town, needs help, and falls into a mystery. I'd read it again lying on the beach and enjoying the story.

Recommended for vacations when your mind needs a break and you want to put a smile on your face.

Lost on Hope Island by Patricia Harman

★★★★★  The publisher provided a copy for review
What a delightful book! The cover may be boring but the content is not. Two spunky and intelligent kids get caught into an adventure beyond the imagination of most of us. It's Robinson Crusoe X2 - and great fun to read. Would you be able to dream up pre-teen "goat midwives"? Neither would I.

I recommend it for children who are advanced readers, teens bored with zombies, and parents who love a sweet story. I wanted to take these two home, give them a bath and breakfast, and reunite them with those who love them.

Highly recommended. Can't wait for the next installation.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Foraged Flora by Louesa Roebuck and Sarah Lonsdale

★★★★ ☐ The publisher has provided a copy for review.
Part horticultural guide, part inspiration, this book is a delight. If you lean towards things free or inexpensive, have an artistic and creative bent, and love seeing nature with a fresh eye, you'll love this book. A few breathtaking options included.

With beautiful photography and helpful tips, this books is full of stories and quotes. I appreciated the comprehensive index at the back that lists florists, flora, and sources. Enjoyable for beginners or expert florists who crave new ways to capture the beauty and unending creativity of the natural world.

Whispering Vines by Amy Schisler

★★★☐☐ The publisher has provided a copy for review.
Think of the culture shock! Imagine moving from Baltimore to Italy ... with a shared inheritance and a handsome and resistant Italian man on the other side. I enjoyed this clash of expections and the eventual romance that leads to a happy ending.

Good summer reading, if somewhat predictable.

Jilted by Varina Denman

★★★★ ☐ The publisher has provided a copy for review.
How long should people just us by our past? How can we see others with fresh eyes, forgiveness, and hope? Can we forgive ourselves? How do we move forward into a new life and new relationships?

This happily-ever-after offers romance and promise, wrapped up in the story of a town's memories, the loving protection of others, and new possibilities for the future.

I recommend this for your summer reading list if you enjoy small-town neighbors, new beginnings, and redemption.