Before and Again by: Barbara Delinsky

Before and AgainBefore and Again by Barbara Delinsky
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

So much had happened, one domino falling, then another and another, each moving another step back in time. The past was the root of the rest of a life. I was to coming to understand that.

Maggie Reid is battling every mother’s worst nightmare, the death of her child and subsequent death of her marriage. Trying to rebuild her life in a new town, with a new name so she can face her reality as she faces the slight scar on her face. A scar that is a reminder of the accident that killed her daughter.

With her new identity, she has made new friends with whom she lives and works with in Devon Vermont. Gracie who just like her is searching and hiding. Hiding from someone and searching for self. Which implied either not liking who are or escaping who you had been. These two woman are tied together as they understand pain but not shared their past.

It has been 10 years since she has moved and when her ex husband makes an appearance to Devon, as she fights to keep her secret safe.

Maggie’s redemption and discovery is character driven as she is fiercely loyal to her new friends while keeping her secret hidden. She is also still deeply in love with her ex husband while she reconciles the pain of loosing their daughter. A reality that they both could not share 10 years ago but are now drawn to each to other to heal what has broken them.

Even though Maggie’s story is the dominant thread, her friend Gracie is the irony that sets into motion her redemption. Loved this

A Special Thank you to St. Martins Press and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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Hanna Who Fell From the Sky by: Christopher Meades

Hanna Who Fell from the SkyHanna Who Fell from the Sky by Christopher Meades
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

She would soar or she would crash. There was no in between anymore.

With trepidation you are brought into Hanna’s world. With her 18 birthday coming, she is now ready to be wed. Living in a cult where men take several wives and the young men are sent away so that the older men may have their pick, Hanna only has to look forward to being a sister wife and mother.

Hanna was told a secret by her mother that gives her hope. That she is different. Hanna wants to run but she also worries about those that she leaves behind. Her brothers and sisters and her mother. Her father is cruel but she learns to use his weakness against him. She meets Daniel, the son of wealthy cult member that has been to the outside. He shares with her things that she has never known.

With much mystery, you find yourself rooting for Hanna to find the hope that she longs for with the people she loves. She learns that love is not controlled but given away with much sacrifice. Will she find the love that will set her free?

Beautiful written prose!

A Special Thank You to Harlequin and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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The Silent Corner (Jane Hawk #1) by: Dean Koontz

The Silent Corner (Jane Hawk, #1)The Silent Corner by Dean Koontz
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Would her family ever be safe? She could only hope that she might be able to understand the nature and intent of the conspiracy behind the country’s escalating suicides and obtain enough evidence to break the story to the public. Even in the darkest darkness, hope was a lifeline, though sometimes as thin as a thread.

After the death of her husband by suicide, Jane Hawk, FBI agent has gone rogue to find the answers to why her husband would go against everything he believed and lived. It didn’t make sense. Her journey has brought to the realization that the suicide rates have jumped drastically. She takes a leave of absence, sells everything she has, and begins to interview those that have been left behind due to a loved ones suicide. As she gets closer to the truth, “they” want her dead.

This is a fast page turner thriller. I loved this character as a wife, rogue, a human, a woman, and the mind set that deals with the reality of evil. She is a contrast of emotions, a walking contradiction, that believes in the humanity of all and the gift of life. She is a bad ass but tender. I can go on and I could say that I do have a girl crush on her. It is her courage that comes alive as she longs for the truth.

The greed for power has met their match in this heroine. I loved it!

A Special Thank you to Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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Abiding Mercy (Amish Mercies, #1) Ruth Reid

Abiding Mercy (Amish Mercies, #1)Abiding Mercy by Ruth Reid
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

You placed His words upon your heart long ago and committed them to memory. You are not without His promises. He is with you always. His Spirit will lead you with instruction. Lift your hope higher in the One who has called you by name. For it is written: “Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will Hear.” So you see, God’s mercy is abiding. His love is everlasting.

We are not always aware of the mercies of God in our lives even in the most difficult of circumstances. Two families – different but the same. Roslyn and Brandon Colepepper have a busy lifestyle. Brandon is CEO of a successful hotel chain and Roslyn is busy with the social life. They have a 18 month old Adriana who is full of life and when she is abducted from Roslyn at the grocery store, the Colepepper’s life as they know it suddenly changes.

Sixteen year old Faith works with her sister Olivia in their parent’s Amish Restaurant. Faith loves working; making new Amish dishes for others to enjoy and helping her parents. She is looking forward to her baptism. Her sister Olivia has other plans and seems to be pulling away from the Amish lifestyle. Her long time beau Gideon sees the changes in Olivia and knows that he cannot have a future with Olivia and the friendship with Faith deepens into something more.

This Amish story brings the English and the Amish together in the most peculiar way. With mystery as how did Faith end up with an Amish family and the English parents determination to find their lost daughter of 15 years. When the two families come together, what changes will happen and what mercies will come forth from the love of two families and their belief in a sovereign God. A great Amish story!

A Special Thank You to Thomas Nelson and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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The Separatists (Newsmakers #3) by Lis Wiehl

The Separatists (Newsmakers, #3)The Separatists by Lis Wiehl
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Ericka Sparks mission in life: to find the truth.

Ericka is rising up in the journalism world and her big break comes when she covers the political fight in North Dakota. The state that under the leadership of Mary Bellamy will separate from the union. Bellamy has to win her bid for governor before any separation can happen and she is hoping that Ericka will get her voice heard. Ericka is also dealing with personal separations at home. Not seeing her husband as much as she likes and the tension that it is causing and her daughter’s rebellion that has been taken to higher level. Truth is calling Ericka as she lay aside her personal fears and she aims to find out Bellamy’s agenda for the greater good.

When several people end up dead associated with Bellamy, the truth is the only thing that can save the country. Will Sparks find it in time.

Ok…a lot of tension, this woman is like super woman without the cape, fighting off snakes, going from place to place in record time, and just surviving one thing after another. Pure entertainment. However, North Dakota is not as bleak as it was made out to be. Growing up on a farm in Langdon, North Dakota, and having fond memories of that time, for entertainment’s sake, it is just not true. North Dakota is a great place to raise a family and make a living. The people work hard for a good a living. Well I will get off my horse now and just say if you like a political thriller, you will be turning pages pretty quick with this one.

A Special Thank You to Thomas Nelson and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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With You Always (Orphan Train, #1) by: Jody Hedlund

With You Always (Orphan Train, #1)With You Always by Jody Hedlund
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It maybe it was less about God abandoning me and perhaps the other way around. – me leaving Him.

I loved how this author took from history of the Orphan Train and brought to life conditions of the heart, fears, grit, and determination of men, women, and children to the forefront. With You Always brings to life of a young family suddenly orphaned in New York. The eldest sister Elise Neumann taking care of her two siblings and babies from another family in her care. Her young family is under the care of Miss Pendleton. A woman of compassion that is opening a center to orphans that are looking for work.

In the 1850’s life was a struggle. Families looking for work and trying to stay together. Coming home from her seamstress job, Elise falls prey in the middle of a gang war and since I believe there is no such thing as coincidences, and neither does the author, Thornton Quincy makes Elise acquaintance in saving her from certain danger. Their chance meeting is the start that changes both of them for the better.

Quincy’s background is a contrast from Elise background of immigrants. Quincy comes from a prominent family and has recently been put in a competition with his twin brother brought forth from his ailing father. A competition that will determine who is better fit to run the family business. A competition of love and ruthlessness. No details will I give as it is part of the plot.

Times become more difficult for Elise family and the must make a tough decision to separate. Elise leaves her family in New York and goes back East to a the beginning of a new town that needs workers. Guess who is charge of this new town. It is the 2nd chance meeting that these two learn about their own hearts and what really matters. I loved the story and I hope the following books will share these two again.

A Special Thank You to Bethany House and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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The Secrets She Keeps by: Michael Robothan

The Secrets She KeepsThe Secrets She Keeps by Michael Robotham
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Rating 3.5 Stars

The value of a secret depends upon whom you’re trying to keep it from. You may think it’s worth a lot. I may think it’s worthless. Someone always has to pay.

Who can keep secrets? Two women Agatha and Meghan. These women are different but driven by passion. Agatha has a back ground that adds to the plot of baby thriller. She wants a baby for reasons that stem from her childhood or lack of. Meghan has everything going for her, a successful career as a mommy blogger in the England area. A husband that is successful in the sports world and two young children a boy and a girl and another on the way.

Agatha is obsessed with Meghan and the life she has. She knows everything about her unbeknownst to Meghan. A creepy stalker. And that is all I am going to say about that.

The author has shown both of these women as victims which I think was played well as you get in the head of each woman. It is their secrets that drive them and they both have them. It is their secrets that could take all that they hold dear away from them and the stakes become high.

I enjoy reading the English books and diving into the English culture and using my English accent as I read in my head with words like arse and the such. With a character and plot driven narration, you will be at the edge of your seat wondering how it all will end.

A Special Thank You to Scriber and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post a honest review.

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