About The Die of Destiny (Champion’s Quest)

The Die of Destiny (Champion's Quest)

Opportunity will always be within reach for those clever enough to claim it.

Lucas Silver’s life is about to change. He thinks it’s because he’s made plans to escape from his foster home and make his way to New York, but then he and some unlikely friends find Hob and Bogie’s Curiosity Shoppe and agree to play a game of Champion’s Quest.

When the four kids walk out the front door of the Curiosity Shoppe, they immediately discover they’re no longer in West Virginia, but transported into the game and a wild fantasy world of dangerous goblins, brutish ogres, and a powerful witch.

They must work together as a team, overcome their real-world weaknesses, and believe in themselves and each other if they are to outwit, outplay, and survive their foes in this ultimate quest to defeat a treacherous monster.

My review

There are so many of these epic middle grade books out there. (I’ve included some of my favorites below) I love how they are written. They engage the reader so completely in a different world. This book was one of those for me. I loved how the author wrote the characters and the adventure. The whole thing was simply amazing.

Lucas Silver is the main character in this one. The reader sees the whole thing through his eyes. I loved the way he wasn’t perfect. Lucas tends to get a bit of anxiety that he calls The Creepers. I liked the way he was able to overcome it a little bit as he went on his adventures.

Lucas is trying to run away from his current foster home. He wants to get on a train that is telling him, Your life is your adventure, but we can help you on your way. What he doesn’t really understand is that living life is the best adventure. Making friends, and stronger relationships, making memories with those that matter most to us. Those are the things that matter most in life. I think he maybe learns that just a little on his journey and so does the reader who goes along with him.

There are so many amazing characters and adventures in this book. Some of them are good for Lucas, some are not so good. But the journey is incredible!

I loved that this book is written for middle grade readers, but it kept my attention from the very beginning. This is one of those I can’t wait to share with our kids.

I was sent a copy of The Die of Destiny (Champion’s Quest) as a gift from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

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Special launch bundle details

Everyone who purchases a copy of the book and submits their receipt via the form linked here: https://shadowmountain.com/championsquest/ will receive a special bundle of goodies that includes a collectible metal bookmark, dice, a signed bookplate, and a poster. These should start shipping out to recipients the beginning of September.

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About While You Were Speaking

While You Were Speaking

♥ She didn’t expect to fall in love. He didn’t expect to fall for his brother’s fiancée. ♥

Lucy Morrowitz has two dreams. First, to reopen the Starlight, a drive-in theater she inherited from her parents. Second, to marry her celebrity crush—motivational speaker, Carter Hughes. Neither goal is attainable until her coworker, morning show DJ, Crew Keller, convinces the community to save the small-town landmark. When Carter Hughes accepts her Hail Mary of an invitation to give the kickoff speech at the Harvest Ranch spring cleanup, suddenly, neither dream feels as far out of reach.

Zachary Hughes has never been much of a dreamer. He doesn’t have as glamorous a job as his brother, but it’s steady and reliable, even if he doesn’t love it. He doesn’t care that he’s not well known, in fact, he prefers a quiet life, and there’s nothing Carter has that Zach envies—until he meets his fiancée. Because of her, Zach finds himself reaching for more: A job he looks forward to every day. A town where he’s known, and not just as Carter’s little brother. And the perfect person to spend his life with—someone who laughs with him, challenges him, accepts him, loves him. Someone like Lucy.

Are these the dreams that will bring them happiness? Perhaps the motivational speakers are right—Lucy and Zach can reach their dreams—they just have to make sure they’re reaching for the right ones.

My review

While You Were Sleeping is one of my very favorite Romantic Comedies. It gets quoted at our house in some way or other at least weekly and sometimes even more than that. I was really excited when I saw that Maria Hoagland based her next book on it. And I LOVED how she wrote this one. It’s original enough to stand on it’s own. But there is plenty of While You Were Sleeping thrown in there.

I started reading this one just looking for a light, fun, read the other day. I read the first chapter and knew this was just what I was looking for. The first chapter made me laugh so hard. I need that sometimes.

Lucy is our main character. She works on the radio in Harvest Ranch. But Lucy dreams of one day bringing back the drive in movie theater that her parents had loved so much. Of course, that costs money, lots of money. Lucy made me smile. She is the down to earth kind of girl that doesn’t mind working and getting a little bit dirty. I had to laugh at the way her drink order was always wrong. Lucy is trying to get the whole town involved in clean up. And that’s how she meets Zach.

Zach’s brother, Carter, is a motivational speaker. When Carter gets asked to go to Harvest Ranch to speak, it quickly becomes a family affair. Zach’s family is hilarious. I especially loved his Grandpa Moose and Grandma Minnie. They were so funny. Zach works at his family’s funeral home, but he’s ready for a change. And Harvest Ranch just might be the change he’s looking for.

I loved everything about this one! Make sure you read all of the Harvest Ranch romances. You don’t need to read them in any order. And they are all great!

I was sent an e-copy of While You Speaking as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.

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About I Hated You First

I Hated You First

Sometimes love is war.

Clay… My best friend has held a grudge against his half-sister, Lauren, forever. It’s unjustified and ridiculous, but I have to take his side. Also ridiculous? How bad I have it for her.

My Lauren radar goes off the second she steps in the building. Did I mention we work together and her dad’s the boss? Yeah, she’s so off-limits I might as well start running now and never come back.

Except, her family is like family to me. So, I’ll do whatever it takes to stick around, even if she hates my guts.

Lauren… I date guys nothing like Clay on purpose. I will not let my old crush on him get the best of me. It’s going on the list of things I’ve outgrown and will deny ever having, like the Justin Bieber poster I used to keep on the back of my door.

It doesn’t matter that I’ve caught Clay looking at me like he’s a jewel thief and I’m a precious gem encased in glass. He’d never choose me over my brother, or his job, or his enjoyment in teasing me.

Avoiding Clay is easy, until the day I realize my dad’s asked for Clay’s help in checking up on my dates.

No stinking way.

My review

This is my very favorite kind of book to read! I loved the enemies vibe throughout most of the book. And it was laugh out loud funny!

I loved that the reader gets to hear from both of the main characters. That is one of my very favorite things in books. It makes the plot more full and complete to hear both sides of the story.

Lauren and Clay’s relationship is very complicated. They have known each other for a really long time. Clay was Lauren’s brother, Parker’s, best friend. And as adults, the two of them work together in Lauren’s family business. This makes plenty of time for funny moments and mean moments between the two of them.

I loved Lauren. And her family, they are all a bit dysfunctional. Her dad especially is crazy. I had to laugh when he basically asks Clay to check up on all of Lauren’s dates. Who does that?!

This book was so great! I enjoyed the plot, the characters, the romance and the humor. It’s one you should really read!

I was sent an e-copy of I Hated You First as a gift from author, Rachel John. All opinions are my own.

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About Falling for Your Enemy

falling for your enemy

People who say keep your enemies closer never took a road trip with a guy who hated their guts.

A month ago, my identity as Dr. Love was a secret. A month ago, I thought I was getting engaged.

A month ago, I wasn’t stuck with the guy who hates me most in the world.

Now… if I don’t make nice with my #1 hater, I might lose my book deal.

Without that, I’m not sure what I have left.

But when I’m forced on a publicity tour with everyone’s favorite guy, the guy who says I ruined his relationship, I didn’t know how low I could go.

At every stop, I get roasted and he gets more revered.

You would think after a while, I would hate him too.

And you would be very, very wrong…

My review

Last month I reviewed Falling for Your Best Friend, this is the final book to that series. And I’m so sad to see this series end. It’s been one of my favorites and Abby, Zoey, Harper and Sam have become “friends” to me. I loved every bit of this book. The whole thing is amazing. It’s such a great cap to a great series.

I loved Sam! I’ve been excited for her story since the beginning of the series. Sam is one of my favorite characters ever. From the beginning of the book where she’s attacked by a grumpy guy, to the very end where she saves Rhys from his demons, Sam is a class act. And she could have been grumpy, being forced to go on a road trip with her worst enemy. But she was happy, kind and she just rolls with everything she’s given.

Rhys is a great guy! I loved how he was conflicted. In one way Sam had ruined his life. In another way, he likes her, so many things about her. He was hilariously grumpy on their road trip. And the two of them were able to play off each other the whole crazy road trip. And that part was amazing. These two seemed real and had such great chemistry.

The love story in this one is fabulous. It’s full of humor. And surprises. I loved all of the surprises that the author gave the reader. The whole plot kept me guessing until the very end.

Speaking of the end…the epic-logue was one of my very favorite things. The whole group was in their 60’s by that point. And this left me thinking. It left me thinking about how much we compare ourselves to others. And why? I loved that these characters showed me that comparison is a huge waste of time, because it doesn’t matter later.

You really need to read this one! And if you’re on Instagram, check out my page today, because I’m giving away a copy of this one over there.

I was sent an e-copy of Falling for Your Enemy as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.

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About Ace High

Sometimes second chances are waiting when you least expect them.

Lars Jackson isn’t purposely hanging around Lost Creek to see Kellie Prosper more. All right, maybe he is. She’s single now, and well, he knows she’s been through a lot. Maybe he can be a listening ear. Something more would be a dream of his, but he’s good at waiting. Before Kellie’s divorce, he’d just kept his focus on his bronc riding career. But now . . .

Kellie Prosper is busier than she’s ever been. Running the Broken Hearts Ranch, bringing on new clients, and balancing all the changes in Lost Creek. At least her brother Ryan is there to help, though when Lars Jackson, one of the Original Six, starts hanging around more, Kellie feels . . . She doesn’t know exactly what she feels. But appreciation is just the beginning.

Welcome to Lost Creek Rodeo!

Best friends at a small college in Texas, six cowboys rise to become pro-rodeo stars. Follow Ryan, Reid, Westin, Ford, Eric and Lars in these six swoony sports romances.

Visit us on Facebook: Swoony Sports Romances

Lost Creek Rodeo Series:
Round Up
Chute Boss
Rough Stock
Full Rigged
Half Hitch
Ace High

My review

It’s always sad to see a beloved series come to a close. I was so glad that this series ended on Kellie Proper’s story. She was a constant through out the series. And she deserved a great ending too.

I love Kellie! It’s a bit unique in this series to see one of the women through out the whole thing. She was a constant. And she had been hurt at least as much as the women she helped. Only Kellie wasn’t getting her own help. I loved the way she learned about herself in this one. She learned that it’s okay to move on and be happy again. And that what happened to her wasn’t her fault.

Lars is such a great guy. Honestly all the Lost Creek Rodeo cowboys are. I liked the way Lars was able to forgive his brother for the hurt and move on. He took a lot of crap from Ryan before he and Kellie were even really dating. And that’s another reason I like him. Plus he’s always there to help when he’s needed.

I really had to laugh at Kellie’s parents. The scene where they show up for dinner may be my very favorite scene of the book.

This book and series made me happy. It made me laugh, it brought a tear or two to my eye. It made me feel. And that’s something I really like about a series. I can’t wait for the next Swoony Sports Romance series. Hopefully it comes soon.

I was sent an e-copy of Ace High as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.

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About Like Unto Moroni

Like Unto Moroni

Amid the devastation of political and religious strife, there arose a leader so mighty that even thousands of years after his life, he is still lauded as a stalwart example of faith and fortitude. Captain Moroni’s acts of heroism and faith in the face of adversity are well documented in the Book of Mormon, and his words and actions stand as an example of spiritual heroism. But who are the Moronis of our day? Who are the bold leaders who have the strength and faith to guide us through these tumultuous last days? The answer to this question is beautifully addressed in Like Unto Moroni. It is you, the faithful Latter-day Saints of this dispensation, who are the great heroes of our day. Individuals who, like Moroni, strive each day to progress in testimony and faith. In learning about the life and legacy of this great Nephite leader, you will learn to tap into your own well of spiritual strength as you fortify your home and family.

My review

I enjoy getting to read books about people from the scriptures. This one by Heather B Moore, Rebecca Connolly and Jen Geigle Johnson was really well done. I enjoyed getting to see their perspective. And learning a bit more about Moroni and how I can pattern my life after his.

This isn’t a very long book. I think I read the whole thing in half an hour or so. There aren’t chapters, just sections. I loved the way that each of the sections references a scripture that gives characteristics of Moroni, things like strength and faith. Each of these sections use scripture references to teach the reader how they can become the characteristics that Moroni had.

This is an inspirational little book. I enjoyed it a lot.

I was sent an e-copy of Like Unto Moroni as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.

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About Once and Future Wife

Once and Future Wife

Immortal men like Rhys Glyndwr belong to forgotten fables—along with his reincarnating wife—but instead, they haunt the mind of a modern scientist, Isla Belle Thorne. Like an old blanket, visions of the healer servant and his wife, the daughter of a duke, have comforted Isla Belle, the only constant in her unstable childhood.

When her mother is hospitalized for a mental breakdown, Isla Belle fears for her own health and keeps the visions a secret. As Isla Belle starts her new job at a renowned medical organization, she comes face to face with Rhys—the same man from her visions.

She’s told an impossible tale of a love that death cannot kill. Surrounded by science but faced with an implausible legend, Isla Belle must decide what to believe and what to leave behind.

My review

It’s not very often that I get to read a time travel romance. This one by Clarissa Kae was very well done. I enjoyed reading about the present time and about the past time. Parts of it left me sad. But all in all, it was really good.

Isla Belle Thorne is a complicated character. There is a lot going on with her mom. She’s hospitalized because the doctors think she’s crazy. The problem for Isla Belle is that she thinks she may be crazy. Isla Belle has visions of a past time. Visions where she sees the same man and she is the woman. And she hides all of this under the guise that she’s simply having a migraine, which she is as well. I liked Isla Belle. She was strong and courageous in her fight for her mom’s situation to be better. And in uncovering secrets.

In the time travel scenes, the reader gets to see points of view from both Isla Belle and Rhys. I liked the way the author did this. It didn’t feel choppy, It was very well done.

And I loved the way the ending didn’t tell the reader everything. I’m looking forward to reading the next book by this author!

I was sent a copy of Once and Future Wife as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.

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About Heart of the Frontier

heart of the frontier

The Gamble by Brittany Larsen

British aristocrat Thomas Clayborne anticipated a grand adventure in America—but what he imagined is a far cry from the rough-and-tumble reality. When his journey West brings a bold young woman into his life, will he risk everything for true love?

Her Frontier Bandit by Jen Geigle Johnson

When Rebecca and her physician father relocate to a frontier town in desperate need of a doctor, Rebecca believes it will be an opportunity to mend her recently broken heart. But she quickly realizes that no matter how far she runs, true love always finds a way.

Sagebrush Sally by Jennie Hansen

English rose Sally is finding it difficult to bloom in the rugged wasteland of the West. But with two handsome cowboys vying for her affections, it seems that even amid cattle thieves and gunfights, the truest danger lies in losing her heart.

Celebration for Celia by Carolyn Twede Frank

Though Celia generally adores Fourth of July festivities, she finds herself weighed down by uncertainties that dim her anticipation of the holiday. Then fate brings into her life a dashing stranger who is determined to give Celia a celebration she’ll never forget.

My review

I always love a good collection. It’s easy to read the novellas in it quickly. I’m not sure why but something about that is satisfying to me. This collection was so fun. I haven’t read something like this in a while, so that was nice.

Brittany Larsen’s The Gamble starts out the book very well. I enjoyed Thomas and Ella as characters. One of my favorite parts of this one is the way Thomas looks out for Ella. Even going so far as to sleep in front of her door to protect her. I liked that Ella was not one to be swayed by money or power. She knew what she wanted from life and she was going to get it.

Next up is Jen Geigle Johnson’s Her Frontier Bandit. This might have been my favorite one. I have a hard time with favorites though. I loved the way Rebecca was willing to go west with her father. Having no idea how their experience would be. And it was crazy with bandits and bullets whizzing every where. I loved how things turned out for her in this one.

Then we have Jennie Hansen’s Sagebrush Sally. I really liked Sally. It was fun to see the sights and sounds of the west through her eyes. I loved that she was a young woman not afraid of hard work and getting dirty when she needed to. She also kept a cool head during a dangerous time. And that was a necessary thing.

Last up is Carolyn Twede Frank’s Celebration for Celia. I really liked Celia in this one. She is a young woman who wants color and fun in her life in Idaho. I loved that she was willing to help with a hurt young man when she needed to. And she learns to listen to her heart as well. It was really fun to see City of Rocks in Idaho make an appearance in this one.

I loved reading the novellas in this book! It’s always fun to travel through a book to the old west.

I was sent a copy of Heart of the Frontier by the publisher. All opinions are my own.

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About His Small Town Fresh Start

his small town fresh start

A small town romance full of family and fun.

Swayzie Westbrook has no patience for rodeo cowboys. They breeze into town, looking for spring flings, and then disappear just when things move beyond a good kiss. 

When forced to team up with World Champion Bronc Rider Lucky Preston to babysit for a week, Swayzie plans to keep him at arm’s length. But she soon finds herself in trouble and Lucky’s the only one who can help her keep her secrets.

Lucky isn’t looking to settle down. He wants to be back on the rodeo circuit, making money and winning buckles as soon as possible. But when the cowgirl with the beautiful long hair and impossibly pink lips needs his help, he doesn’t think twice about sticking around. 

Can Swayzie learn to trust a cowboy? And, will Lucky find a new life in Harvest Ranch, or will he leave the small town and beautiful woman behind to chase a dream?

My review

I’ve been loving these Harvest Ranch books! This one by Lucy McConnell was one of my favorites because of the characters. I LOVED Swayzie! She’s sassy and sweet. And the kind of girl that everyone wants to know. I really loved how she was willing to step in and help her older brother Wyatt when he needed it most.

Then there’s Lucky. He’s also there to help. But his sister, Stephanie, is married to Wyatt. Both Swayzie and Lucky are supposed to watch Jaden, Wyatt and Stephanie’s son, while they are gone. This provides lots of fireworks and fun in the plot. Mostly because Swayzie was already prejudiced against Lucy before he showed up. He’s a champion bronc rider and seems very full of himself.

I liked the character growth that both of them go through in the book. Lucky and Swayzie both are prideful in their own ways. And they both need to learn to let go of that. I loved the way they were constantly thrown together. And when tragedy strikes, they were able to come together and get through it in the best way possible.

This is a cute book. I loved every bit of it!

I was sent an e-copy of His Small Town Fresh Start as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.

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About Dancing to Freedom

dancing to freedom

Canada, 1960

Ballet is Katerina Petrova’s world. But when the stage lights go dim and the curtain closes, she is simply a young woman who is trapped. On tour with the Soviet Kirov Ballet in Canada, Katerina is watched day and night by her chaperones and ballet security. But no one realizes that her hotel balcony adjoins that of handsome Canadian hockey player Robert Marcell’s.

Robert is enchanted by Katerina, though he knows little about who she really is. In an attempt to find out more about this mysterious young woman, Robert extends his stay in the hotel. One night, when a teammate’s wife persuades him to join them at the ballet, Robert reluctantly attends. He has no interest in cultural experiences—until Katerina dances onto the stage. Soon, the two are inseparable, but despite their growing love, Katerina knows they can have no future together. They come from different worlds, and to escape her gilded cage would be nearly impossible.

My review

Do you like to read novellas? I enjoy them sometimes. It’s nice to be able to read a book in a single afternoon. I loved this novella by Traci Hunter Abramson. Her characters were fabulous.. And the plot is so great too.

I’d never given much thought to the way the people from Russia would have felt. This book is set during 1960. And the people of Russia were very oppressed at this point. I enjoyed seeing things from Katerina’s point of view. It just made me think a lot about the freedoms I enjoy here and the way I’m able to live my life without fear. Katerina had to sneak around, jut to spend a few minutes with Robert on their balconies. So crazy.

Robert is a great guy. I thought it was so funny when he went to the ballet thinking how bad he hated it, and then he realized that Katerina was in it. I loved how he went out of his way to spend time with her. And to try to get her more freedom than she had.

I really hope we get to see these two great characters again in another book!

I bought Dancing to Freedom on Kindle. All opinions are my own.

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