Saturday, October 20, 2018

Cold Shot (Take two)

GIVEAWAY
PETTREY, DANI
COLD SHOT

Four best friends and then one went missing...

In college, Griffin McCray and his three best friends had their lives planned out. Griffin and Luke Gallagher would join the Baltimore Police Department, Declan Grey would head to the FBI, and Parker Mitchell would study to become a crime scene analyst. But then Luke vanished before graduation and their world -- and friendship -- crumbled.

Now years later, Griffin has left the police and his friendships behind. Still trying to forget a case that went bad when he was a SWAT team sniper, he's living a quiet life as a park ranger at Gettysburg. Quiet until skeletal remains are uncovered near Little Round Top -- and they aren't Civil War-era.

Griffin just wants the case to go away, but charming forensic anthropologist Finley Scott discovers evidence pointing to the work of an expert sniper. When FBI agent Declan Grey steps in to take over the case, past and present collide. Griffin soon realizes he'll need to confront some of the darkest days of his life if he -- and those he cares about -- are going to escape a downward spiral of crime, danger, and murder.

My Review:

published in 2016
My thanks to my public library for providing me with an audio version of this book read by a marvelous narrator - Therese Plummer. I'm about to read the last book in this series and when I saw that the library had this recorded version of the first Chesapeake Valor series I thought it would be a great way to reacquaint myself with the gang. Stellar recording! Therese Plummer has a real talent for telling a story and portraying different characters in such a way that it's easy to tell who is who just by the slightest inflection. And her voice gets all fast and tense at the suspensey bits and the way she portrays Griffin...blissfully toe-curling! So if you don't have your own copy of Cold Shot or -- gasp! -- you haven't read it yet, here's your chance.

Exceptional start to a new series. I have to admit to being gutted after I read the last book in the Alaskan Courage series. I didn't want to leave the McKennas and I was mildy put out at the author for not making that clan bigger so there could be more books. :-) However, Dani Pettrey has redeemed herself with this magnificent start to a promising new series and a new host of swoonworthy heroes.

The stars of the Chesapeake Valor series aren't from the same family, but they are a brotherhood...of sorts. Fractured relationships are the result of past tragedies but they are beginning to move towards restoration. In Cold Shot they are united by a common goal -- solving a complicated cold case.

Pettrey provides delectable hints of background that she slowly reveals throughout the read. There's still plenty to learn about these intriguing men though, which has me rabidly anticipating the release of the next book.

So for now we'll concentrate on Griffin -- a taciturn and gruff park ranger who is carrying around a world of hurt and bitterness. He doesn't make a good first impression on Finley...or a good second, third or fourth one either. It is sheer delight to be privy to their inner thoughts as they size each other up. Finley's unsettled by her attraction to Ranger Grumpy until she burrows beneath the gruff exterior and catches glimpses of the real man. Be still my heart -- I was swooning way before she started (mind you I had the advantage of 'hearing' his musings about her.)

A delectable romance with loads of promise ensues. Pettrey develops it slowly, teasing her readers with just a glimpse of what is in store. Finley and Griffin learn to work together, respecting each others' strengths and weaknesses before gradually unbending enough to engage in some heart-to-heart talks that lead to a deeper relationship. Unexpected humour and compelling faith conversations make their love story even more thrilling.

As to the suspense -- intense, complicated -- the kind that keeps your heart racing and breath puffing out in shallow gasps from time to time. "Duck!" and "No!" became a kind of reading chant as I raced along plenty of hair-pin plot turns. Phew! Still catching my breath.

And I can't forgot to mention the road trip loving Irish wolfhound. Yes, I said Irish wolfhound. I might have swooned more over the dog than the hero. :-)

A definite 'must read' if you enjoy romantic suspense. Dani Pettrey fans will be ecstatic and she's sure to garner new ones with this enthralling story.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:


If you would like an opportunity to win a copy of  Cold Shot please leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you post a comment and add your email address, please use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in the address to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email please remember to put the title in the subject line so that it's easy for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday October 21 2018.  Offer open to international readers. Good luck!

Friday, October 19, 2018

Battle Tested

GIVEAWAY
SCOTT, LAURA
BATTLE TESTED

Keeping guard -- because a killer lurks
A Military K-9 Unit novel

When Captain Isaac Goddard saves Vanessa Gomez from a vicious attack, he discovers the feisty military nurse is the Red Rose Killer's next target. With help from Vanessa's guard Doberman, the former pilot makes it his mission to protect Vanessa and her young brother. But when the danger closes in, can he overcome the post-traumatic stress that haunts him and stop a ruthless killer?

My Review:

Puppies!!!!! And they are named after national parks — how can a reader resist that? Plus, there are three K-9s in this story as well!!! This might be the first book I’ve read where the dogs outnumber the humans and I’m loving it!

Okay, the hero and heroine are pretty cool too. We’ve met them both in previous Military K-9 books and I’ve actually been really looking forward to Isaac’s story. No worries if you haven’t read any of the previous books — each one reads well as a stand-alone. Though they share a common suspense thread, each story has a unique mystery to solve too...and a romance to sort out! But I earned bragging rights because I figured out who the anonymous blogger was two books ago and information in Battle Tested proves l was right!!!! Woot! How’s that for some keen armchair sleuthing?

Looking forward to the series grand finale next month when the Red Rose Killer will finally face justice!

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Battle Tested, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easy to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday October 21 2108. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Miss Serena's Secret

GIVEAWAY
MILLER, CAROLYN
MISS SERENA'S SECRET

With devastating scars in her past, Serena Winthrop is sure no man can be trusted -- especially not men like the far-too-smooth Viscount Charmichael. His reputation as a charmer and a gambler is everything she despises. And the young artist makes sure that this disreputable heir to an Earldom knows of her deep disapproval whenever they encounter one another.

Henry, Lord Carmichael, is perfectly aware of his charms to the women of the ton. He's gambled with plenty of their hearts as easily as he does their husband's money -- it's all in good fun to him. But lately he's been wondering if there's more to life -- and confronting the idea that his actions might not prove worthy of the admirable wives his friends have found.

When Serena's brother-in-law asks his best friend to protect his young ward, Henry promises to be on his best behavior and not woo her. But the more he learns of her, the more he realizes she might be his best reason for changing his character. Then the lady's art leads her to London infamy. Now Henry must choose between the life mapped out for him as the Earl apparent, and the love of his life. And Serena's secret may mean the end of his family's titled line.

My Review:

I’m all in a giddy tilt-a-whirl of delight over another sublime Regency Romance by Carolyn Miller! Be sure to dust off those fainting couches and have a stock of smelling salts and fans on hand because...well...

Henry!!! Currently a Viscount but soon to be an Earl, who is also somewhat of a morose rake when first we meet. Though jaded with his lifestyle, he isn’t quite ready to embrace the idea of change. If only his friends hadn’t found such delightful wives and seem so happy! I do so adore a reluctant-to-reform rake caught in the crosshairs of an enchanting woman!

But Serena is so aloof and mysterious — and amusingly frank — how can Henry resist? Despite the fact that he has promised his best friend (and Serena’s brother-in-law) that he won’t woo the lady.

What follows is a tangled web of angst and emotional mayhem full of the kind of ‘Regency speak’ that thrilled me to my toes! And the drawing room shenanigans...be still my heart, I feel a fit of  the vapours coming on!

And Miller always includes a host of compelling secondary characters — some of whom I love to hate! Serena’s mother is just as clueless and exasperating as she was in ‘Winning Miss Winthrop’ and there’s a truly viperous ‘lady’ who still makes me shudder. (Side note: you don’t need to read WMW to enjoy MSS but Serena is Catherine’s sister so there are scrumptious bits of Jon and Catherine that made me very happy.)

And if you think it can’t get better than all that — well, you’d be wrong because the author includes a moving inspirational thread that brings depth and meaning to an unforgettable love story.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Miss Serena's Secret, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easy to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday October 21 2108. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

October Giveaway — Week Two

Argh! My poor laptop is gravely I’ll! She won’t even stay on for more than a minute! So  I’m  posting the giveaway  results on my phone which isn’t fun and I'm not clever enough to figure out graphics — so this isn’t going to be pretty!

CONGRATULATIONS

The House at Saltwater Pond won by LEA

A cowboy Christmas won by Caitlin M

At Home in Wishing Bridge won by Rebecca Maney

The Sound of Distant Thunder won by Terrill

Justice Buried won by Karen H

Lost December won by Perrianne Askew

Winners can email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca with their mailing address and/or I will email you requesting your email address.

NEXT WEEK GIVEWAYS:

Well, this is a bit of a mess — I have a few books read and reviews handwritten,  but trying to learn how to set a blog post up on a phone is going to be a bit tricky— I am after all not known for my techno wizardry­čśĆ so, let’s just say this week will be full of surprises! I’m bringing my sick and wounded to the doc tomorrow and I don’t know if it will be a quick fix or a slow death so I won’t be posting until Wednesday or Thursday. So, stop by then and i’ll either have my baby back or I will have figured out this phone thing or I’ll throw myself on the mercy of the library’s public access computers!


Saturday, October 13, 2018

Lost December

GIVEAWAY
EVANS, RICHARD PAUL
LOST DECEMBER

When Luke Crisp graduates from business school, his father, CEO and co-founder of Fortune 500 Crisps Copy Centers, is ready to share some good news: he wants to turn the family business over to his son. But Luke has other plans. Taking control of his trust fund, Luke leaves home to pursue a life of reckless indulgence.

But when his funds run out, so do his friends. Humbled, alone, and too ashamed to ask his father for help, Luke secretly takes a lowly job at one of his father's copy centers. There he falls in love with a struggling single mother and begins to understand the greatest source of joy.

My Review:

published in 2011
So thankful for a public library that provides me with all kinds of wonderful retro reads like this one!

Heart-tugging, Kleenex-inducing modern twist on the Prodigal Son. Fabulous retelling, though I'll admit that Luke is hard to take in the first half of the book. What a wretchedly lost soul and some of his so-called 'friends' had me fuming! But, as in the biblical story, Luke finally reaches rock bottom and there's nowhere to go but up from there!

The second half of the book is a powerful testimony of so many gospel truths -- gratitude, redemption, the hope of second chances and the secret to true happiness. And all wrapped up with a Christmas bow! Richard Paul Evans delivers another heartwarming holiday story destined to be enjoyed year after year.

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like to win a copy of Lost December, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easy to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday December 13 2018. Offer open to International Readers.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Justice Buried

RETRO READ

GIVEAWAY
BRADLEY, PATRICIA
JUSTICE BURIED

In an effort to get her security consulting business off the ground, Kelsey Allen has been spending a lot of time up in the air, rappelling down buildings and climbing through windows to show business owners their vulnerabilities to thieves. When she is hired to pose as a conservator at the Pink Palace Museum in order to test their security weaknesses after some artifacts go missing, she's ecstatic. But when her investigative focus turns from theft to murder, Kelsey knows she's out of her league -- and possibly in the cross hairs. When blast-from-the-past Detective Brad Hollister is called in to investigate, Kelsey may find that he's the biggest security threat yet...to her heart.

Crackling with romantic tension and laced with intrigue, this suspenseful story from award-winning author Patricia Bradley will keep your guessing -- and looking over your shoulder.

My Review:

published in 2017

Definitely a sleep-depriving-red-eyes-in-the-morning kind of read because once you start Justice Buried there's no way you'll be able to stop. Intriguing, edge-of-your seat stuff! From the cold case (that's heating up with alarming speed) to the prickly, slow-start romance. And if there was ever a kick-butt heroine it's Kelsey! I mean she's like a Ninja female Spiderman. How could you not love a heroine who rappels down buildings for a living?!

Well, Brad has a few doubts at first. These two were not high school sweethearts -- more like indifferent and misunderstood -- and they carry those residual feelings into their unexpected reunion. And then things get really complicated as the action and danger amps up. And oh, what a thrilling twisted mess it is! Lots of potential suspects, riveting casework and compelling clues. I was a nervous wreck by the halfway point and then, as things began to come together in my steel trap of an armchair sleuth mind (smirk), I came close to hyperventilating. Heart attack material within the pages of this book!

A compulsive thrill of a read!

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of Justice Buried, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT or DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easy to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday December 14 2018. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!

Thursday, October 11, 2018

The Sound of Distant Thunder

GIVEAWAY

DREXLER, JAN
THE SOUND OF DISTANT THUNDER

For two hopeless romantics, the Civil War will be the ultimate test.

Seventeen-year-old Katie Stuckey is starry-eyed, in love with the idea of being in love, and does not want to wait until she is eighteen to marry Jonas Weaver as her parents insists. Twenty-year-old Jonas knows war is at odds with the teachings of the church, yet he can't help being taken in by the romance of the soldiering life, especially for the abolitionist cause.

When his married brother's name comes up in the draft list, Jonas volunteers to take his brother's place. But can the commitment Katie and Jonas have made to each other survive the separation?

My Review:

"Jonas never worked around a problem, he worked through it." (p 55 ) -- a father's interesting observation which plays out in unexpected ways throughout the course of this first book in Drexler's The Amish of Weaver Creek series.

And what a stunning work of historical fiction! This author does her research and then brings history to life with her stories. The Sound of Distant Thunder is more than a Civil War novel. Yes it includes battles and politics and violence but  Drexler has created a very intimate look at these events through the eyes of her characters -- the kind that feel like living, breathing people it's easy for a reader to bond with.

And by doing that she has brought that time in history to a truly personal level. It made a real impact on me and I found myself mulling over parallels I see in this upside down 21st century world and the decisions and conflicts each of us is faced with daily. In some ways we are very much like Jonas -- but are we looking for ways around our problems or are we courageous enough to work through them?

For all his youth, Jonas is amazing hero material. Torn between his Amish faith and his desire to see slavery abolished -- and it seems like there is no way to honour both. I love the way the story unfolds. There's plenty of day-to-day Amish living in 1862 -- and historical Amish fiction is so fascinating! There's the sweet romance between Katie and Jonas -- the impetuous impatience of young love! But this is also a very interesting time in Amish church history as different districts battle over what being Amish really means. Conflicting opinions threaten their Old Order way of doing things. Intriguing parallels here between a nation fighting for change and a church struggling to keep change out.

Jan Drexler provides exquisite storytelling with the promise of more goodness to come as future books in the Amish of Weaver's Creek series release (hopefully in the very near future!)

Book provided courtesy of Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY:

If you would like a chance to win a copy of The Sound of Distant Thunder, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easy to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday October 14 2018. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck!;lishis