Thursday, November 29, 2012

All I Want by Jolene Perry, Kaylee Baldwin & Rachael Anderson

When I was approached by Kathy Habel to participate in this blog tour, I was tickled to do so, as I absolutely adore Christmas novels,esp Debbie Macomber's and her Shirley, Goodness and Mercy novels, of which her newest just came to me today and will be reading as soon as I finish blogging on this fun trio of stories. So, here goes.

Pretty Near Perfect by Jolene Perry

Of the three, this was my least favorite, only because I love my Christmas novels to have tons of Christmas imagery with all things to invision and this story lacked this for me, but the things that I did love, was the fact that I do believe in love at first sight, as my husband and I did, as Norah and Collin do and we're able to see this through their eyes as the story evolves from a POV, as each chapter is told from Norah's and Collin's POV.  This is something I've never come across before, which intrigued me. 
Norah is spending Christmas with her deceased fiancee's parents and feels sort've uncomfortable.  Collin spends Christmas with his roommate's family, which makes rather an interesting situation. 
My deceased hubby Bob and I met at a single's activity 12 day's after his wife's funeral.  A week later, at a dance at his Stake Center, he walks right by me and my best friend of 35 years and I call out, "Hi Bob, and he's asking himself do I know this lady. He mentions this to me later and to people we tell this story to, say I must've made quite an impact on Bob, if he couldn't remember meeting me that first time!!!  LOL  We actually never had an actual date before we got engaged!!!!  We met on the 12th of April, got engaged on my grandfather's BD on 1 June and were married on the 12th of Sep '80.  His first marriage to Barbara was a quick courtship, even quicker than ours, as theirs was a blind date like my parents was, though there's was a computer dance at BYU in '65.  Anyway, Norah and Collin spent Christmas by themselves, which was perfect.

Six Days of Christmas by Kaylee Baldwin

I absolutely adored this cute novel..  It had everything I love about Christmas, my favorite time of the year.  Natalie and Janessa are best friends and have been for most of their lives.  Natalie works for an Ad Company and she's been given an assignment to come up with aslogan for blocks and she needs to come up with something over the holidays and is having problems.  She hates Christmas, as her parents were always traveling, so she never did Christmas.  She and her boyfriend are workaholics, having everything planned out.  When Janessa's baby brother Jimmy unexpectedly comes home for Christmas, things have a way of turning upside down.  She finds herself enjoying the  festivities with the entire family, realizing her feelings for Jimmy are more than she bargained for. 

Twist of Fate by Rachael Anderson

When Ty finds a postcard meant for his neighbor's mailbox in his mailbox, he realizes it's from her fiance, saying he is breaking up with her and won't be coming back, but is marrying someone else, Ty is torn over what to do.  Ty has fallen for Kenzie and wonders if by letting nature taking its course, that Kenzie just might fall for Ty.  When Kenzie realizes she has feelings for Ty, she's torn over letting her fiance know she's not wanting to marry him.  And, when Ty's controlling mother steps in with help from Kenzie, sparks fly. 
These three short Christmas stories are a perfect start to a great and cozy season of reading.
I give All I Want 5 Stars.
I received my pdf copy from Kathy.

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Date Published: October 15, 2012
ISBN: 978-1480115231

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

An Unexpected Angel by Janet Halling

I didn't know what to expect when I first  started reading An Unexpected Angel, but I was quite surprised at how well I enjoyed it and Janet understands my  feelings.

This story starts out in New York City with all those skyscrapers and hustle and bustle that goes with working and living in New York City. Ella Davies has buried herself into her job and work, not allowing anything or anyone to distract her from climbing the corporate ladder.   On Christmas Eve, she goes into a convenience store to buy a few groceries for the weekend and shows how terribly rude and offensive she has become.  

When she notices the same man from the store in her apartment building's basement while she's on the Treadmill, she falls, blacks out and finds herself in Guadacanal in the midst of a World War 2 battle talking to an American G.I.  

Next, we find her beside a Pioneer Family  trying to move  a wagon off of the father's leg.  She is asked by her  Guardian Angel Cohen to help 3 men who are also angels and can see no     reason as to why she needs to help.

We next find Ella trying to help this young 12 year old girl find a way to get her away from an abusive family.

Her last stop, one she doesn't want to face, she has toface head-on,as she has kept this horrific tragedy hidden deep within her soul, feeling guilty for 20 years for an accident not her fault.

Ella's last and final stop is to go see and make peace with her father, who has had demons of his own.  It's so sad when we, as people, do the complete opposite of what Heavenly Father would want for us.  If we'd only give our lives over to Him, we'd be blessed immeasurably.   Thanks, dear Janet.

I received this pdf copy from Kathy Habel and Janet.

Published by: Cedar Fort

Date Published: Oct 9 2012

ISBN: 978-142111039



Monday, November 12, 2012

Faith, Hope And Gravity by Merrill Osmond & Shirley Bahlmann

When I first read about Merrill's debut novel on Amazon just days after reading about his memoirs on Amazon, and reading a couple reviews, I knew I had to review this amazing debut.  Since Shirley is adear friend of whom I shared two spiritual stories in her Friends From Beyond The Veil, I knew she would have an ARC for me.  It took me awhile to get past the first two chapters, mainly due to watching tons of Hallmark Movies and other movies on my computerso since I'm set for several blog tours in the next fewweeks, I wanted to get this book read and reviewed, so here goes.

When the story begins, we find Liam Kane, a young 12 year old boy from Hawaii, that lives with his Hawaiian mother and Caucasian father, who is  a commercial pilot who flies all over the world with his mother never having left her native Hawaii.  When Liam's mom asks him to run to the store, he gets attacked by two boys, Dirk and Tomoya, causing injuries that would land him in the hospital and keep him home and being homeschooled for a time.  Liam has the gift of being able to know what will happen to him, and is also able to swim with the dolphins.  His parents decide to send Liam to England to his Uncle's to work for 3 months.  Atg first, Liam doesn't want to go and leave his mother, but she feels learning to work would be good for him.

While Liam was being attacked, he finds a little dog being abused by Dirk, so decides to take him home.  

During Liam's adventures, he seems to have Cory, a specal friend just appear when he needs him.  With Tomoya following him to England, he finds out he was sent to watch over him. Liam seems to not be willing to forgive Tomoya for his injuries, yet Tomoya sticks by him through everything, from their adventures in England, Stonehenge, Italy, France, South Africa, Australia, then Mexico.  When he predicts that the plane he was going to be on will crash, he is pursued all over the world, even being  kidnapped and landing in prison.  He finally forgives both Tomoya and Dirk, learning a thing or two about how we each need to treat people and learn how our talents, when used in the right way for good and to do God's work, that we'll find true peace and happiness, that God gave us special  talents to help others. 

I loved this book and didn't put it down untl I finished it.  I can see a sequel you two.  This book will stay with you for a long time afterwards.  And, when a book brings tears after the last page, you know it's a keeper.  Thanks Merrill and Shirley  for a wonderful journey.

Publisher:  CreateSpace

Date Published:  2012

ISBN:  978-1477681787


I received my ARC from Shirley Bahlmann.    

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Christmas In Bliss by Michele Ashman Bell: A Christmas Booklet

This new Christmas booklet from my dear friend Michele was very warmhearted and just the type of Christmas story I love.
Vicki is on her to her parents home in Salt Lake to spend Christmas.  Since flying would be too expensive, she drives from her home in Tillamook, Oregon, where she works for the Tillamook Cheese Factory.  She is bringing homemade gifts and a few from the Cheese Factory to share.  When she gets stuck in a blizzard near Bliss, Idaho, she decides to stop at a Truck Stop to wait until the snow plows do their job. 
Vicki finds a few families and others stranded inside the Truck Stop and when a few children complain that they are hungry, both she and Brian, the truck driver that almost sent her off the highway, go out to his truck to get a few toys from the shipment he was hauling for his injured brother and felt it would be ok to share afew with these few children and Nicki to share her food. 
This turns out to be the best Christmas they all would remember for a long time,  especially as they learned just what it means to give of oneself during the Christmas season.
I give this booklet 5 stars.

I received this booklet from Michele in today's mail.

Publisher:  Covenant Communications
Date Published:  Nov 2012
ISBN:  978-1- 62108-021-3
Once Upon A Baby: A Tale of Adoption by Shari Guess and Illustrated by Kate Featherstone

When I was approached about participating in this blog tour, I eagerly accepted, as my oldest daughter had placed her baby daughter with LDS Social Services to be adopted.  Our entire family was affected by the circumstances in which our daughter became pregnant at age 15 1/2 back in '89.  We all were connected with Lauren and her family in June '09 just before Lauren headed off to BYU-Provo.  Our daughter kept in contact with Lauren and her parents through letters sent from LDS Social Services.  My deceased hubby received inspiration of when Lauren was sealed to her adoptive parents.
This simply written and illustrated little book was sent to me the day I was asked to participate in this blog tour.  I proceeded to read this quick read within 5 minutes.  It explains so simply and beautifully how a woman sometimes through no fault of her own or her husband's not able to have a baby, so they decide to go through the  adoption process.  I really liked how Shari incorporates the "Tummy Mommy" into the explanation, so a younger child can truly understand this amazing journey.
The last and most important step that this little gem of a book shares with its readers is how so very special and spiritual it is to go to the Temple and be sealed for Time and All Eternity, making that wonderful journey complete.

I totally recommend this book for anyone considering adoption or even those not. 
I give this a 5 star rating. 
I received this as a PDF copy from Kathy, who is in charge of this tour.

Published by:  Narrow Trail Publishing

Date Published:  July 1, 2012

ISBN:  978-0985859008