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Stroke of Luck by B.J. Daniels

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Stroke of Luck by BJ Daniels was a great read.  I loved the cowboy/western genre with the romantic suspense genre.  The book read quickly and well. Quite frankly, I have just found BJ Daniels and this book will not be the last.  

Poppy Carmichael had a thing for Will Sterling when the were growing up.  She crushed on him hard and as a 15 year old, he was not prepared for it, nor handled it well.  But as we all know history does come back to bite up. Will Sterling in his first season of running the Sterling Family Ranch. His major cook has a broken leg and is out of commision.  The only person he feels he can call is an old friend, Poppy, who has moved back to told to start her own catering company.

Poppy agrees to help out for the first group of the season, while in the back of her mind she is planning revenge - Will falling for her through her cooking - and then she walks away.  From here the story takes twists and turns. The guests show up - mostly disgruntled. A guest is killed and a major winter storm blows down on them, trapping them for a few days. That is when things get even more twisted and Poppy and Will need to band together to keep the guests alive and well and figure out who is the killer.

This book is due out early next year and I would suggest it be put on people’s reading lists!  I loved the characters of Will and Poppy. I thought the guest ranch with the suspense and romance was a great mixture of elements.  I found myself trying to solve the murder based on the knowledge I had and later enjoyed finding out I was wrong, but the ending didn’t disappoint me. Stroke of Luck by BJ Daniels was a great read.  

Rancher's Dreams by B.J. Daniels

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Rancher’s Dreams by B.J. Daniels is a tale of lost love and missed chances while missing characters and wild events swirl.  It is part of a series called the Montana Cahills, but I have not read any of others. I am grateful to Harlequin for sending me the book to review.

Drey met and married Ethan rather quickly and was disappointed to hear that her new life in NYC was not going to happen.  He bought a house in her hometown (a gaudy nightmare of a house) and wanted to settle there. The worst part is she is trapped in the small town where she was a girlfriend to Hawk Cahill and despite an incident that forever broke them up, she still has a tender heart for him.   The biggest problem is that Ethan disappeared on their wedding night. Drey doesn’t know what to think, she is feeling dazed and quite confused, like even keeping things straight. On top of that her new brother-in-law showed up and practically moved in. All these terrible dreams and hallucinations keep happening to her.  She needs help and turns to the Cahills for help and that is when things get very interesting…

I like how the house was more of a character than a setting.  Drey was gullible to suggestion way too often and I am glad she finally wised up.  I loved Drey with Hawk and found the romance sigh worthy. Rancher’s Dream by B. J. Daniels was a good read.  


The Governess Game by Tessa Dare

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The Governess Game by Tessa Dare is about an unlikely governess.  Alexandra Mountbatten accidentally ends up as a governess to two wild and canny girls.  The girls have scared off every governess, and half the rest of the staff. They have been passed from one family member to another until they ended up with Chase Reynaud, the heir to a Duke and their next guardian.  He has decided that they need enough education to be sent away to school and Alexandra Mountbatten is the person to do it.  

Alexandra really just wants to find a comet.  She is an amateur astonomer and not a governess. Somehow, she ends up staying and manages to get the girls to move forward.  The problem is she is falling for Chase as well. Everyone needs someone to love, even a man who has a rule about no attachments.

The Governess Game by Tessa Dare is the second book in the series Girl Meets Duke. While to governess to Duchess is not different plot, the twist with Alexandra makes the novel new.   The Governess Game by Tessa Dare is a good read.

Before and Again by Barbara Delinsky

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Before and Again by Barbara Delinsky was an interesting read.  Barbara Delinsky has written a story that tugs the heartstrings when it is not making you MAD.   It has made me think more and more about the media coverage of events. It has made me more careful to pay attention to the reasons for people’s anger.  It made me understand that scapegoats do exist, but that is just what they are a person who is chosen to forced to endure anger for other people who were truly guilty.

Maggie Reid lives in Vermont in a very quiet life.  She has a small home, works in an elegant spa as a makeup artist, and seems to find many things very difficult.  Slowly as the story moves forward, it also moves backward and we find out why Maggie lives the way she does. We meet Maggie’s ex husband and her probation officer. We realize why she has both and how her life as been destroyed and then rebuilt.

Barbara Delinsky is one of my favorite go to writers.  Before and Again is not my favorite of all her books. I found the story line a little too dramatic in places. However, I never even paused in my reading. I was determined that the story would end correctly. I enjoyed the book and enjoyed the storyline - even a bit of the drama.  Gossip in a small town, like the one I live in, is a fact of life. Perhaps that needs to change.

Before and Again by Barbara Delinsky was a good read.  


Blue Prints by Barbara Delinsky

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Blueprints by Barbara Delinsky is the newest book in her collection. Once again, she has brought us into a new world and new characters with great skill. Jamie and Caroline are mother and daughter who work together in a family company that designs and builds houses and as part of a TV Show. Jamie is an architect and Caroline is a builder. Both think their life is all planned out – like a blueprint until the accident changes everything. Suddenly their world changes and they need new plans. 

For me, Barbara Delinsky’s novel Blueprints reminded me of how life is not static it changes again and again. Resilient people learn to change with it even when it is hard. Jamie and Caroline have to move forward and find their way in among life’s confusion. Addressing how life changes, mother/daughter relationships and love in one book is quite a feat, something that Barbara Delinsky is able to do while weaving in an interesting story that will capture the reader’s attention. I did not want to stop reading or put the book down! 

An awesome read!

Tragedy Girl by Christine Hurley Deriso

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Tragedy Girl by Christine Hurley Deriso is a new young adult novel offered by Flux. It is a compelling young adult novel.  The themes of love, friendship, loss and grief are interwoven within the story seamlessly.  

Anne has lost both of her parents in a tragic accident.  She has been taken in by her aunt and uncle, but is having trouble getting used to her new life.  On top of that she is going to a new school where friendships are already formed. Anne feels adrift until she meets Blake.

Blake is struggling with loss as well.  His girlfriend disappeared one night swimming during the summer and he is grieving as well.  Blake gives Anne someone who understands what is happening with her.

There seems to be more though.  More questions and  suspicions just add up to more confusion for Anne.  She has always thought of herself as being practical and focused on schooling.  Now she is unsure about what happened that summer night with Blake and why no one seems to want to leave her alone with Blake.

Tragedy Girl is a good read by Christine Hurley Deriso.  The book is well written and interesting.  The characters are well drawn.  The plot line moves right along and brings you on the the ups and downs of a new relationship and starting over.  This is a book I would recommend to students.  

The Woman Who Couldn't Scream by Christina Dodd

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The Woman Who Couldn’t Scream by Christina Dodd was excellent.  Once again we are in Virtue Falls with Kateri Kwinault, who is the newly elected sheriff of Virtue Falls.  She is currently recovering from a gunshot wound and busy chasing down the criminal who did that.  The newest character is Merida Falcon, an old friend of the sheriff.  

Merida had a mixed up life, once a foster child, later a college graduate, a trophy wife and now finally someone she chooses to be.  She has tried to disappear from her old life and reinvent herself only to have an old boyfriend (who tried to kill her) and an old bodyguard (from her trophy wife time) show up and mix up everything. Plus someone is killing women in Virtue Falls and the clues are minimal.  Kateri has her hands full with her old friend and the new crimes and her new boyfriend.

I really enjoy Christina Dodd’s books.  She is a great writer who really manages to weave real and unreal and great characters together into a book I cannot put down once I start reading!

The Woman Who Couldn’t Scream by Christina Dodd is a great read!


Because I'm Watching by Christina Dodd

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Because I’m Watching by Christina Dodd was awesome!  So awesome, I totally lost track of time and didn’t finish anything else but the book! The premise and the characters caught me almost immediately.  The situation that sets up the book, certainly starts things off with a bang.  I don’t normally like creepy, but I locked all the doors and kept on reading.  I have to admit - I might have yelled at the character once or twice.

Jacob Denisov came back from war, changed forever.  He was slowly killing himself, while wallowing in grief and guilt, until Madeline Hewitson drives her car right into his living room.  The shock of it caused Jacob to break out a little and allow Mad Maddie into his world and visa-versa.  I was mesmerized by the interplay between the two and their stories. Jacob has no front wall and still he sits in his living room watching what happens in the neighborhood. Unusual and unfortunate incidents keep happening and Maddie is beginning to look more and more crazy, but is she?

Because I’m Watching by Christina Dodd is a fabulous book.  I hope others enjoy it as much as I did.  I now have to go back and read the first two.  WOW


Dead Girl Running by Christina Dodd

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Dead GIrl Running by Christina Dodd comes out next month.  I enjoy this author, so I was very happy that Harlequin changed their mind and allowed me to preview the book.  I found the story interesting and it kept me on the edge of my seat. I look forward to reading more books in this series.

Kellen Adams works for a hotel on the Pacific Coast in a place called Yearning Sands.  She was the assistant manager left in charge while the owners went on vacation. As a main character, she is a complicated person.  Kellen survived an abusive husband, a missing year, living on the streets, a stint in the army and eventually a new place to live and be at home.  Meanwhile, not all is easy going at the hotel, smuggling, a murder, and a murder mystery weekend, flashing lights and missing people. So many twists and turns made the story intense.  Information is slowly leaked out as the story moves between the past and the present.

Dead Girl Running by Christina Dodd is the first book in a new series called Cape Charade. I liked many of the characters. The book takes place near Virtue Falls, another series by the same author.  There was a small overlap of a character, but certainly not enough take away from the story if you haven’t read any other of her novels. Dead Girl Running by Christina Dodd is a good read!


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Latest comments

23.10 | 11:23

Awesome interview! B.J. Daniels books are just GREAT!! Always anticipating the next one! Appreciate her talent, and bringing us wonderful hours of reading!

22.10 | 18:12

For one, I’m glad you can come up with ideas and that the characters talk to you. Keep them talking and thank you and your characters.

22.10 | 17:30

I adore B J Daniels’ books. She grabs me from the first sentence and doesn’t let go until the last sentence. I loved this interview.

01.10 | 16:20

Happy Birthday! I remember when book club started when you turned 50. OMG! 100% agree with political status. So disappointing. Happy Foliage!

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