Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Elli - A Second Chance Novel by tina desalvo

True love is not scared away.

Elli - A Second Chance Novel by tina desalvo

"Ben, are you sure you understand what you get with me?"

The thing is, Elli still doesn't get that she is not just a cancer survivor.

There so much more to her.

Ben knows it.

Of course, Ben has his own issues. They both start out in desperate places with their lives out of control. It was a forced meeting. And they each had closed up their hearts. No interest. But of course, love.....

What a great story.

I really enjoyed the fun, the crazy characters and the location, (it is set in New Orleans at Mardi Gras). Who doesn't love NOLA?

Dogs, gators, mystery, drama, crazy family, friends and belly laughs, make this a quirky wonderful read.

Really great development of characters throughout the whole story. 

I enjoyed Elli, I learned to like Ben, and I loved Joey. The story made me want to have Tante Izzy and her whole crew living in my neighborhood. More laughs, more fun, and more books by Tina DeSalvo.

It's a really lovely, quirky love story. 

All proceeds of the sale of Elli are donated to the fight against breast cancer.

Reviewed by Lisa Hutson

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


Sarah Jio's Goodnight June is a beautiful, well written story that tugs at your heart.

"Sometimes I think of my life as a great big story. Each silly thing I do is a new paragraph. And each morning I turn to the next chapter. It's fun to think of life that way, each day being an adventure of the grandest proportions. If I can give you any advice, my dear, and I am unworthy, at best, to be doling out such wisdom, I might just say this: Whenever you're down on your luck, and when things aren't going the way you like, remember that you are the author of your own story. You can write it any way you like, with anyone you choose. And it can be a beautiful story or a sad and tragic one. You get to pick." 
Sarah Jio, Goodnight June

Goodnight June opens with June Peterson dreaming of her happy place, a bookstore with emerald green walls, a fireplace and cozy chair. June awakens and finds herself in the hospital, not in her Aunt's book store. June is a single, thirty-something New York investment banker who specializes in foreclosure. She has high blood pressure and has been admitted to the hospital.

Declining medical treatment, June leaves the hospital and returns to her high pressure job. June comes home and learns she has inherited her aunt's children's bookstore which is on the brink of bankruptcy in Seattle, Washington. June decides to fly out to Seattle with the intent to settle her aunt's estate and sell the bookstore.   June finds a letter from her Aunt Ruby which states that she has faith in June and "if anyone can save this store, it's you." The letter also mentions secrets and treasures. I enjoyed how the author revealed the secrets and treasures to the reader.

June finds letters from her aunt and children's author Margaret Wise Brown hidden throughout the store. Each letter reveals information about the two friends, their families, their love lives their work and most important a clue to the next set of letters.

The letters reveal that both Ruby and Margaret had complicated relationships with their sisters and June discovers more about her own family history. As June figures out each clue in her Aunt's scavenger hunt she learns more about her Aunt as well as about herself. The author does a fantastic job comparing and contrasting the characters of Ruby and June.

 I enjoyed reading the letters written in the 1940's as each contained a life lesson and clue for June to discover and pursue. Each one of the novel's characters is well defined and plays an important role. June's story is one of self discovery and the reader wants her to push forward and reach for the stars or the moon!

I received a copy of this book from the Penguin First Reads program and highly recommend it.
 -Susan Gorman

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Pirate Takes a Bride (Misadventures in Matrimony #4)

Set Sail with a Sexy Pirate!

The Pirate Takes A Bride

     Ashley couldn't breathe. The air in her lungs burned hot and dry. "No," she wheezed. She stumbled, shaking her head, willing the sight of the lovers to vanish. She blinked, but Nick was still holding another woman in his arms; his face was still slightly flushed from desire for another. His cerulean blue eyes met hers, and their gazes held. His was expectant. Unrepentant."You bastard,"she spat. "You're going to thank me for this one day," he said.

The Pirate Takes A Bride captures the spirit of author Shana Galen's Misadventures of Matrimony series, provides Nick and Ashley's back story which is alluded to in Blackthorne's Bride and takes the story to a new level.

Shana Galen's writing style has evolved during the time that the last novel in this series, Blackthorne's Bride was published and it shows in Pirate's storyline. Galen does an excellent job writing these characters which she created in the past in her present day writing style. Pirate has conflict, emotion, action and is fast -paced which are the hallmarks of Ms. Galen's style. She weaves in some poignant scenes between the couple which leaves the reader hoping for Nick and Ashley's HEA. Our hero and heroine are well written and memorable.

Nick and Ashley's Grand Adventure contains many secrets, tattooed pirates, bloody battles and takes place on a pirate ship and on a tropical island. I loved the pirate battles which took place on the Robin Hood, they are well written. I read the final scenes well into the evening. The final pages were both intense and poignant. The story held my attention from start to finish.

I enjoyed the mix of action, adventure and romance in this novel. I am pleased to report that it was well worth the seven year wait to see what the author had planned for Nick and Ashley. Thank you Shana Galen for listening to your fans and writing such a fabulous conclusion to the Misadventures in Matrimony series!!!

Lady Celeste gives The Pirate Takes A Bride by Shana Galen

a six pack!

Review by Susan Gorman
ARC provided by author

What Lady Celeste's friends have to say about
The Pirate Takes A Bride 

Nick & Ashley could only be together.
They need each other.
Ashley, so immature. Needs to grow up.
Nicholas needs to let go. Move on with his life.
There is true romance learned and I love that.
Two people fighting it and a little surprise
that helps the both of them very much.
Realize what matters. Whats really important.
What a terrific addition to the Misadventures in Matrimony series.

"I want it all," she whispered. "I want you.
All of you." She looked into his eyes, so
clear and blue. His face, so strong and
"I want you to love me."

Review by Lisa Hutson
ARC provided by author