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jbarrett5 book reviews, etc

I read a lot and post my reviews
Black Monday (Stan Turner Mysteries) - William Manchee

Black Monday by William Manchee
Have read other series from this author and loved the books, enough that I went and bought the other 2 in the series.
Starts out 1987 black Monday for the stock market. He's involved in many things going on, an executor for an old woman who has passed away and the proceeds will go towards her dogs, another needs IRS to unfreeze his accounts or a man overseas could die...
Like the family time at home and the kids interactions.  Alternating chapters about other cases using a male/female narrators.
Female narrated portions are about Paula, Stan's partner at the business and she's handling a murder trail.
Really good read, wish I had read it from the first in the series but I didn't feel left out as they told us what we needed to know about their past working together.

The Girl from Summer Hill: A Summer Hill Novel - Jude Deveraux

The girl from Summer Hill by Jude Deveraux
Story that is done in parts of a play. Casey is there cooking for the play participants and she's not aware of who really owns the house and oversees one taking a shower on the back porch. She later realizes who he is... and he's the actor that the town hopes to donate his time to the play.
Money will go to charity but they get off on the wrong foot. The drama of the auditions is quite comical as all those who should've won had overdone their little walks and talks.
They do get thrown together and Casey wants no part of being in the show, just feeding all those there.
Peacock is the hit of the story in my opinion as if he made things happen. Lots of controversy over things during the play and the outcome was amazing to me that the big boys really were watching!
Light reading.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Tea Shop Folly (A Teacup Courtship Novella) - Carrie Fancett Pagels

Tea Shop Folly (A Teacup Courtship Novella)
Have read other works by the author and have enjoyed them.
This one is from a tea cup series-this being my first one I thought it sounded like a  good story and it's about tea. I love tea.
Starts out with Lily and she's been taking care of her ailing mother and the rest of the siblings-girls with names of flowers similar to hers. She gets a note that her great aunt has passed and left everything to her.
She travels to Michigan and talks to the lawyer and gets things in order. She finds out she was very wealthy and had thousands of tea cups and saucers which she will inventory and send to a cousin who has a tea shop. Lily goes a bit crazy spending the money as her aunt wanted her to and donating some even.
Story also follows Theo and he's an engineer with the locks of Lake Superior. Loved learning about locks for ourselves as we climbed through them in upstate NY. He's in a boarding house til he finds out his mother is about to appear, to what she hopes is a summer rental house.
He doesn't have the means to do that and he befriends Lily and stops by thinking she has a tea shop. He helps to set up the garden area for one. Many other visitors all get the wrong idea and think she's taking customers away from their boarding houses and tea shops.
Love the words and different meanings of the word folly to realize what it was meant to in the story.
How things are so misunderstood but how things are set right. Easy to keep track of the characters and there are a lot of visitor's and even the cops show up.  
Through prayer they may get through it all. Light reading for this novella.  Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
I received this book from The Book Club Network (bookfun.org)  in exchange for my honest review.

Always With You - Elaine Stock

Always with You by Elaine Stock
Not sure I really wanted to read this book as it's about hateful racial crimes but I thought I'd give it a chance for those who believe in God to make it all right.
Story starts out with Isabelle and she's come to the school playyard before going to dinner with her father and grandmother. A group of boys attack her, tie her up and drag her to the school building. Tyler, from the faithful group comes to her rescue.
Her relatives don't really care for him as do none of the towns folk. Alternating chapters from Tyler as we follow his path also. They continue to see one another as he rescues her again from the bad gang.
She plans to attend college but that may be on hold if things go on like they have been. She'd have to convert to his religion, memorize passages and reciting.
Enjoyed learning about the area they hiked on their honeymoon-looked it up online even.
She finds out things and decides what she must do, lots of twists and turns and can't believe the ending how it brings some back together. Only til the truth is told does it make sense.
Reading guide at the end is included.  Wasn't as fearful as I thought i'd be.
I received this book from The Book Club Network (bookfun.org)  in exchange for my honest review.

Saving The Marquise's Granddaughter - Carrie Fancett Pagels

Have read another book by this author and enjoyed it. This one starts out in 1700's and this time frame interests me as I recall a short lived TV show, covington crossings that I really liked because the female did everything her brothers did, even better at some things like archery.
Suzanne and her mother have their secret gotten in the hands of the bad guys and they msut flee leaving her father and brothers behind to defend from those who want to kill those who don't go along with the religion.
She was to marry Etienne and leave to rule over the Carribean estate of the family. The women head to her grandmother's and are stopped often along th eway trying to escape. They make it but she's not there, won't be for another week but others can tend to them...
Her whole life changes and Johan brings her to safety for a bit til things calm down. She thinks she can still get to the colonies...
So many come and go from her life as she attempts to make it to the colonies. Very good story line, enjoyed it.
I received this book from The Book Club Network (bookfun.org)  in exchange for my honest review.

Dandelions - Vivienne Vincent

Dandelions by Vivienne Vincent
Story sounded interesting and the book starts out when Izzy is 8. She recalls the interaction she and Saber have and then 10 years later when she's working as a barrister and she spills a drink on him.
Her first date and it's with him and she expects him to come to the door and he waits for her near his car. They agree they must communicate better.
Like analogy of dandelion and how it's an illusion vs a rose she does accept from him.
Fan magazines have a different impression of how he really is...her dog Dandelion's decreasing health makes her want to cancel the date but they have not exchanged numbers.
He is very understanding and they come to a solution as he helps her with the dog.
He is so experienced and she is new to all the lovemaking, even kissing...
Very explicit sexual, ON FIRE details as he teaches her how to please him in many ways. The next day she realizes what has happened.
At times you feel sorry for her knowing her upbringing...
A Billionaire's Bedroom Behavior Unveiled
Another ten years later: This part of the story revolves around Saber Fergus and starts out with Izzy and her grandmother has died and she moved to NY to live with her uncle and aunt. She gets training to be a typist and leaves their house to make it on her own.
She's felt betrayed from the way Saber treated her after that one night and she is replused by many others who want a date with her over the years.
She had to finish writing a story of how Saber has inherited his family estate and he has a pen collection. She can really make the story go the other way by substituting some words and letting others know the real guy. So funny, til the story is printed!
She is told to apologize to him and he just wants to control her life and she can't refuse part of the proposition.
Didn't see that ending coming! Lots of twists and turns along the way. Easy to keep track of the characters as there are only a handful. Interesting where the book starts and ends-full circle.
High velocity sexual content with a good story line about human nature.
I received this book from the author via Goodreads contact in exchange for my honest review.

Feel The Heat (Rockford Fire Department Book 1) - Kathryn Shay

Feel the Heat
This book starts out with Fransceca and she's saving the life of a man who's unconscious from the fire in the building.
Alex thought it was a man that had saved him as he goes to thank her in the hospital. He soon is giving her food and everything else she wants, she had saved his life.
They get along very well til she learns who he is and that he knows her mother-the woman who left them when Fran was very young and she's attempting to get back into their lives again.
Fran just wants to do her firefighting job as she's now been accepted into the family at work but during her 2 month time off to heal the broken bone she does go out to eat with Alex... she's from the working class and he's from the other side of the tracks and she sees what that did to her own parents.
Love all the fire fighting talk and how things happened, the investigations and how they determine the causes. Enjoyed the jokes and facts about firemen.
Travel and locale of Rockford is very appealing=can just picture the town in upstate NY they could be referring to as we have relatives there-very nice area.
Enjoyed learning more about the career and how it started at the visit to the museum. I feel like I've been there-so descriptive.
Alex wants more than just being friends and she's upset because she really wants the same but he leaves...will they get back together and hash it all out?
Her mother wants a second chance....hot steamy sex scenes but really enjoyed the fire mysteries more and learning new words.
Can't wait to read more from this series. Excerpt from Risking it All is included at the end. Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.

A Shower of Roses - Tom Milton

A Shower of Roses by Tom Milton
Won this book in a contest and just got around to readng it. Starts out where Eva and Marek are in London where he's a banker and does CIA work in Poland.
She is a USA pediatric nurse but it's going to take some time to be able to get the same job in London. She is friends with Julianna who plays the harspicord as her husband is freinds with Marek.
The girls don't hang out much. When Marek is back in town he invites other Polish males over and Eva notices they are being watched and notifies Marek...
Alternating chapters we learn of Eva and her parents life once they came to the USA. How Eva wanted to be a nurse and her schooling til the day she saw her father with a woman she wanted to hightail it away from them all...
Like how the book got it's title and what it symbolizes.  Wow didn't see that ending happening, lots of twists!
Enjoyed the travel and very descriptive roads and byways.

Root, Petal, Thorn - Ella Joy Olsen

Root, Petal, Thorn by  Ella Joy Olsen
Story line sounded interesting, wondering what I'd do with the same circumstances.
Starts out with Ivy and she's just lost her husband and she's got two children to raise. Her brother Stephen and Drew, his friend are nearby to help get her moving again.
Alternating chapters about the others who have lived in the same house throughout the years.
We find out the mysteries surrounding things Ivy has found as they lead to more clues as to the secrets they held.
At times it's confusing as to who is who, but the dates they lived in the house are key.
I received this book from The Kennsington Books in exchange for my honest review.

The Weekenders - Mary Kay Andrews

The weekenders by Mary Kay  Andrews
Like these books as they portray real life of today's women's struggles and goals and accomplishments.
Wendell had first started dating her during high school and he promised her a lot. He has a hard time of making them complete.
Riley heading to Belle Island with her daughter, Maggie and her puppy Banks waiting for him to show up for the weekend and she's afraid he's not going to make it.
She realizes her daughter is growing up so fast, she'll be a teen soon. Wendell is working lots more hours and he spends lots of money on handbags for Riley and other expensive things for his daughter.
Full Moon party sounds like a blast. Although I vacationed and lived on an island I didn't go to the parties as there was more drinking and smoking than what I wanted to partake.
Chapters alternate from the past to the present so we can get more clear picture of Riley and Wendell during their teen years.
Hard getting used to all the female friends and all their kids at the first. She's served on the deck of the ferry-he is asking for a divorce!
When the girls arrive at the house they notice a foreclosure on the front door. Their remote controls won't work now....they have nowhere to go but her parents house... Sheriff shows up she hopes to clear up the locked doors but that's not the news he's there to tell her!
Lots of questions ....Why had her husband emptied all bank accounts even her $6 million trust from her family...Wendell had helped her drunk brother with many events and they were entwined in the family development business...
Book also follow Nat, the ferry captain among other jobs. love how he looks after Riley and Maggie. Riley hopes the family can help with finances but there are so many that hold secrets from one another.
Lots of twists, great book of mysteries, secrets, bit of romance, sex and family holdings and dwelling into it all.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

The Mermaid Collector - Erika Marks

The Mermaid Collector by Erika Marks
Have read many of the authors other works and have enjoyed them. This one starts out in the present day and she is finishing up her sculpture of the mermaid. It's a big commission. Tess is back with Peter and Buzz maintains the cottages.
Tom Grace shows up and is given the keys to the lighthouse keeper's cottage a gift from Frank. Only he, Buzz and Frank know of what's happened. Dean is now incapacitated and Tom tends to hes every need. He looks forward to the new adventure and maybe even a local job as he's a school teacher.
Then the book goes back to 1877 where we learn of the legends surrounding Cradle Harbor Maine and the mermaid festival, etc.  Lydia and Linus are taking care of the lighthouse, she is relieved he will not be on the sea and her nightmare might go away...she's not able to have babies either...
Alternating sections from the present to the past make this book like actually having two books in one and you hope they will connect with one another, down the road.
Love learning about mermaid purses and hearing of the wind chimes and their connection to the mermaid song... Love hearing the legends and being so close to the water and what it all encompasses.  Love the DASH!
Beautiful magical majestic stories. Q&A at the end along with discussion questions.
Won this is a contest.

Goodbye for Now - Laurie Frankel

Goodbye for Now by Laurie Frankel
Book starts out with Sam and he's designed a dating program and it's a big hit. He likes Meridith but it takes time for them to really see one another.
After her grandmother passes away he sees how sad she is and knows he has a program using AI that can help and it does and it doesn't.
Really strange happen and they open it to others to try out as they are suffering also. Unheard of what happens next... Few characters easy to keep track of what they each are doing.
Love the scenery and places visited in the book, near Seattle as we've been to many of them.
I received this book from a contest I won.

Surface - Stacy Robinson




SURFACE  by Stacy Robinson
Story line sounded intriguing. Starts out with Claire and Michael and they have a son Nicholas who's home for the summer from boarding school. He's now 17 and he meets up with his other friends at night.
As Michael has left the country to do business one of his associates shows up and he and Claire hit it off-he's got info on a new project and she questions him about it. What ensues is they end up in bed and he drops his cocaine that Nicky finds and uses-and Nicky is a diabetic.
He ends up in a coma and surgeries and then Michael sends him to a rehab hosptial in LA and Claire goes with him.
Story goes back in time so we can understand Michael and Claire's relationship before they got married, then we are back in the present at the LA rehab place. Nicky is showing progress but Michael who flies in from Denver, CO doesn't think as much as he should be improving. Nickys sees himself as a retard.
Quite a few twists to the story and then other events on top of that make this a good read. Action, mysteries, loss, travel, new friendships and betrayal. She is able to uncover some things that lead her and her friends to think Michael is having an affair. She does learn what it's all about and so much more and she meets him headon with how she can help him.
Like how the book got it's name and yes the mother in law knew it from the start. Crazy plan of hers to help her and her son survive. it's never going to work...
I received this book from The Kennsington Books in exchange for my honest review

A Christmas Escape: A Novel - Anne Perry

A Christmas escape by Anne Perry
Starts out when Charlie arrives in Stromboli, a mountainous island off the coast of Greek. He can't wait to walk to the mountain top where the volcano sometimes erupts.
Candace startles him, a 17 year old girl.  Like tour of this area as I'll never get to see it for myself, very descriptive!
Events occur that leave a man dead. There are only a handful of people there and the killer is one of them. Charlie takes Candace under his care. They investigate to see who'd want the man dead...
The volcano has erupted!
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Bitsy's Bait & BBQ - Pamela Morsi

Bitsy's Bait and BBQ  by  Morsi_ Pamela
With the divorce settlement she buys off ebay a B+B.
Emma and Kate and her 5 yo son Josh were on their way...
Humorous and each chapter has tips to help the situation along LOL,  It's not a B+B but a bait and BBQ shop...
Story also follows the life of Shawn, he helps him mother run the burger joint.  He's gone missing and had married the girl, Kate they hired.
She's made sure the child has child education fund and trust fund for college.
Kate receives a letter stating the father wants to revisit the visitation and sue for custody.. She knows it's not Shawn but his mother that wants the child.
Shawn and his mother and the laywer show up and rent a cabin for the summer while trying to get the grandchild away from their mother. Shawn is not for this at all and helps her in other ways to get her business off the ground thus giving them time to talk to one another...
Like the ideas of how to make the business a success with help from the townsfolk. Sex scenes also. Bit confusing at times with some of the townsfolk drama.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Marry Me at Christmas (Fool's Gold) by Susan Mallery (2015-09-29) - Susan Mallery;

Marry me at Christmas by Susan Mallery
Madeline is the wedding gown store owner. It starts out with some trying the gowns on and it looks like they are pumpkins.
Fool's gold and the bridal shop owner is in charge of all the details of a local bride and groom.
Roselind has just started working there as her kids are back in school now.  Madeline helped them be happy with whatever combinations they wanted.
Lots of back story and the characters that live there. This is the town where females are the leaders in every department in the town: mayor, fire chief, event planner, police chief, etc.
Ginger is to be married and the mayor needs her to do everything.  Johnny Blaze is the brother of the bride.  Wedding will be in 7 weeks time and during the Christmas season.
Story also follows Johnny and he's a movie star, travels a lot and is everybody's love fantasy. Lightening and tingling when they shake tips her off that she's found her 'one' as her mother would say, it's a family trait.
Have read all the other Christmas holidays books in this series and the same events happen with live nativity.
Lots of pregnant women and the men they are married too, we are brought up to date with their lives. Predictable ending.
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).