Tuesday, July 26, 2016

A Reader's Opinion: WHERE THE HEART IS by Jennie Marsland

The Book
When Rochelle McShannon moves with her father from Morgan County, Georgia to the Yorkshire Dales, she thinks she’s leaving behind everything that matters to her. Her mother has passed away, her twin brother is going west to avoid the looming Civil War, and her family’s unpopular views on slavery and secession have destroyed her relationship with the man she hoped to marry. If returning to her father's childhood home eases his grief, Chelle asks for nothing more.
Martin Rainnie understands grief. Since the loss of his wife in childbirth, he’s known little else, except anger. He’s retreated to his farm and turned his back on the world, including his baby daughter, who’s being fostered by Chelle’s relatives. With little Leah drawing them together, Martin begins to wonder if he can love again – and convince Chelle to do the same.
But the war overseas has far-reaching consequences, even in a small English village. Can Martin and Chelle overcome danger, loss, and bitterness to make a home where the heart is?
A Reader's Opinion
Heartwarming Love Story! 

Where The Heart Is, written by Jennie Marsland, is a romantic story filled with tenderness, hope and love! As soon as I started to read the first chapter, her story got me hooked and I could not put it down. A very touching story that really shows that dreams can come true! This heartwarming story of two beautiful souls, Martin and Chelle, is all about strong family ties in a small village. You will fall in love with her rich characters!

A new life begins for Rochelle, who had to move with her father to the Yorkshire Dales, leaving behind lots of beautiful memories, but also a painful souvenir of the man she had hoped to marry. Forgetting her past, she intends to start a new beginning with the help of her father and friends. Enters in her life, Martin, who has become a widow, and has no desire for her young daughter Leah who's taken cared by Chelle's relative. He lives in solitude on his farm, afraid to love again. Two beautiful souls who won't take a second chance of being hurt again! But destiny has other plans for them. Fearful of losing his daughter, Martin will decide otherwise by asking for Chelle's help. Will Chelle accept his proposal? Will she take the chance again, fearing she might get hurt again? Let's say that their relationship is complex. However, as their friendship grows, they will share a mutual trust and slowly fall in love!

I strongly recommend this wonderful new series, Choices of the Heart, nicely written by this talented author, Jennie Marsland.

Reviewed by: Nicole Laverdure for Books & Benches
Rating: 5 Stars
Content: 1 Heart: Aww! We love those sweet, clean kisses. This is a clean read appropriate for all audiences.

Friday, July 22, 2016

A Reader's Opinion: Friends of the Wigwam: A Civil War Story by John William Huelskamp

The Book
Friends of the Wigwam  is a historical novel and love story about six young friends whose innocence is stripped from them seemingly overnight in the brutal setting of the American Civil War.

Meticulously researched and based on real-life people and true events, Friends of the Wigwam spans 1857-1865 and introduces you to the courageous men and women from Illinois who staged one of the first contested national conventions, were responsible for getting Abraham Lincoln elected and made the ultimate sacrifice during the American Civil War.

From the true story of a young woman who successfully masqueraded as a man during the Civil War and was buried with full military honors to the often heart-wrenching letters home to wives and families and actual military correspondence between military leaders, author John William Huelskamp brings to life a volatile nation at war.

Celebrate each friend's successes and struggles on the battlefields, learn the story of those who led the battles, and meet a magnificent war-horse that is a steadfast survivor in the face of many tragedies.

Without at doubt, Friends of the Wigwam is one of the most moving Civil War novels you will ever read.

*** A WGN Emmy Award nominee news video on this fascinating Civil War novel can be viewed at friendsofthewigwam.com***
A Reader's Opinion
A fascinating depiction of Civil War history molded into a novel, Friends of the Wigwam spans the years before, during, and immediately following the Civil War. Real letters, diary entries, and historical figures are meticulously woven into the story until fact and fiction become one.
The author's description of events are vivid and realistic. With the help of six friends, the author brings both the history and the struggles of the characters to life without sacrificing the chronicle of true events.
It's apparent the author knows his history and has done his research, and though this book is described as a love story, I wouldn't consider it such. While the writing style of the dialogue was not to my taste, it is a book worth reading for those who enjoy stories of the Civil War and historical works in general. 
Format Read: Paperback
Source: Provided by the author or publisher
Reviewed by: Kathy Edwards for Books & Benches
Rating: 4 Stars: Pretty Darn Great! In the reader's opinion, this was a great book and they think you should read it, too.


A Reader's Opinion: OPERATION WILDCAT by Megan Michelau

The Book

Jess Baker thought being a leopard shifter in the small town of Blackford was the most exciting thing that was ever going to happen to her. She wanders through her days blissfully unaware of the dangers lurking behind the seemingly peaceful fa├žade of her hometown. When the mysterious Caleb Marsh waltzes into her family’s diner, her attention is irreversibly drawn to him. Little does she know the intriguing stranger will be the key to her survival. Caleb Marsh is a man on a mission. He’s been charged with the job of finding the men responsible for shifter deaths throughout the country. When he stumbles upon a local shifter willing to assist in any way she can he can’t refuse her. The lines between duty and love begin to blur and Caleb must do what he does best to protect not only her, but the shifter community as well. Will their bond be severed or will love triumph?

Series: A Keystone Novel, Book One

A Reader's Opinion
This is a great tale for paranormal fans! 

Operation Wildcat, written by new-to-me author Megan Michelau, is a fun and fast-paced shapeshifter paranormal romance! It's also a nice introduction to her new series. If you love the world of shifters, like the leopard and jaguar, this short novella will surely please you! It’s a quick read. I could not put it down, and read it in one shot!

Operation Wildcat, tells the story of Jess and Caleb. Set in the small town of Blackford, where lives a community of person-shifters, Jess, a leopard shifter, lives quietly with her family and friends, when suddenly, some of them disappear. Caleb, a man on a mission for the Keystone military unit, enters their world to investigate the murders. When one of them is abducted, the shifter community will unite their forces along with Caleb's help, and try to find the betrayer. Just follow their adventure filled with love, danger and a dash of humor. Beautiful chemistry between Caleb and Jess. We also, meet these charming characters, Caleb's best friends, who are also shifters, Tucker and Cherry! Will Caleb be able to protect Jess and her family? Can their love be strong enough to create a long lasting bond?

I like Ms. Michelau's style of writing, “The shifter dripped sex appeal and an aura of danger, making her want to purr!” Perfect blend of romance and paranormal! Some love scenes sizzle! 

Format Read: E-Book
Sources: Provided by the author or publisher

Reviewed by: Nicole Laverdure for Books & Benches
Rating: 4 1/2 : Excellent!
Content: 4 1/2 Hearts: Still hot, and boy do we feel the passion, but not as graphic as expected.