Wednesday, April 15, 2015

After a Fashion by Jen Turano Book Review

22504489 // After a Fashion //

A Class of Their Own // #1

By Jen Turano

{Review by Bethany}

// Book Synopsis //

Taken from GoodReads

"Miss Harriet Peabody dreams of the day she can open up a shop selling refashioned gowns to independent working women like herself. Unfortunately, when an errand for her millinery shop job goes sadly awry due to a difficult customer, she finds herself out of an income.

Mr. Oliver Addleshaw is on the verge of his biggest business deal yet when he learns his potential partner prefers to deal with men who are settled down and wed. When Oliver witnesses his ex not-quite-fiance cause the hapless Harriet to lose her job, he tries to make it up to her by enlisting her help in making a good impression on his business partner.

Harriet quickly finds her love of fashion can't make her fashionable. She'll never truly fit into Oliver's world, but just as she's ready to call off the fake relationship, fancy dinners, and elegant balls, a threat from her past forces both Oliver and Harriet to discover that love can come in the most surprising packages."

// Bethany's Book Review // 

After a Fashion is a fun book full of humorous scenes, totally relate-able uh-ohs, and a sweet tender story, that Turano fans will love!

Those who have read my book reviews for a while might remember that I didn't really like Jen's last book. So I wasn't sure if I'd enjoy After a Fashion, but decided to read it on a whim since the story-line was much different than the last book. I'm glad that I did, because I really enjoyed this story!

After a Fashion is a fun, quick read that is perfect for all those girly girls, but also for those who are a bit more strong willed and tomboyish, as the main character definitely has these qualities. I loved that aspect of the book, how it was girly since it was somewhat based on fashion, but also had an element of funkiness. The story, though somewhat simple, was extremely funny; and Jen's love for humor definitely shined through the story, and kept it fun. I've always loved this aspect of this author's books, since I'm all for a funny story that keeps me laughing out loud!

The story-line was very sweet, clean and ended in a pleasantly unexpected way that surprised me! I was not expecting the ending, and found it to be a very nice surprise that was perfect for the story! The romance was very tender and sweet, and I loved seeing it unfold throughout the story!

Fans of funny historical fiction should definitely look into this novel! It was a pleasant read that made up for my bad experience with this author's previous book, and got me excited for future novels in this series!

D I S C L A I M E R :: I received a complementary copy of After a Fashion for the sole purpose of this review. I was not paid to write this review or promote this book, in any way. All thoughts expressed are completely my own, honest and unbiased opinion.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Remember the Lilies by Liz Tolsma Book Review

22440548 Remember the Lilies 

By Liz Tolsma 

Review by Bethany  
Book Description:
"Irene and Rand come from very different walks of life. Will they find common ground in their fight to survive?

Irene has grown up in the jungle as a missionary with her Aunt Anita, but now she and countless others are imprisoned by Japanese soldiers at the Santo Tomas Internment Camp in the Philippines. Irene and her aunt are safe there, and she keeps busy with her duty of delivering censored messages to the camp’s prisoners, but like everyone else, she prays for the war to end and for her freedom. Rand is a wealthy, womanizing American, whose attempted escape from the internment camp has put himself and others in danger. When Rand and Irene’s Aunt Anita meet one another in the hospital, Irene learns more of his story and her heart is determined to save his family. But the danger outside the walls of the hospital worsens every day, and life in this exotic place is anything but luxurious. Can Irene find Rand’s family before they disappear forever? And can a humble missionary woman and an arrogant man find common ground in the face of their biggest fears?"

Book Review

I've been a big fan of Liz Tolsma's previous two novels, and was very excited for the release of her newest novel, Remember the Lilies! While it wasn't my favorite of her novels, I still really enjoyed this sweet war time novel, and would highly recommend it!

Liz Tolsma just has a way with war-time novels. This is certainly what spiked my interest in her novels, and after reading her first one I was immediately on the look-out for more of her novels; and read them as soon as they were released. You can definitely tell that this time period is her forte, and it shows through her writing! Her characters are always so strong and honorable, and the stories are always so sweet and tender - and this novel is no exception! She just has a certain ability to so tenderly display the time period, and the people who lived during them on the page, in a way that moves and inspires.

All in all, this was a very good read. The romance was sweet yet clean, and the story was exciting and had meaning. The characters were strong and very exemplary, and you felt as if you knew them. Any fans of WWII fiction should get their hands on this book!

D I S C L A I M E R :: I received a complementary copy of Remember the Lilies from the publisher, for the sole purpose of this review. All thoughts expressed are completely my own unbiased opinion, and I was not paid in any way to promote this book.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sabotaged by Dani Pettrey Book Review

22504482// Sabotaged //

Alaskan Courage Series // Book #5

By Dani Pettrey

{Review by Bethany}

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher
Publication Date: February 3rd, 2015
Number of Pages: 336
  Rating: 3 out of 5 stars 
// Book Synopsis //
 Growing up, goody-two-shoes Kirra Jacobs and troublemaker Reef McKenna were always at odds. Now paired together on Yancey's search-and-rescue canine unit, they begin to put aside old arguments as they come to see each other in a different light. Then a call comes in from the Iditarod that will push them to their limits.

Kirra's uncle, a musher in the race, has disappeared. Kirra and Reef quickly track the man, but what they discover is harrowing. Frank's daughter has been kidnapped. In order to save her, the man must use his knowledge as a mechanical engineer to do the kidnapper's bidding or she will die. Kirra and Reef, along with the entire McKenna family, are thrown into a race to stop a shadowy villain who is not only threatening a girl's life, but appears willing to unleash one of the largest disasters Alaska has ever seen.
// Bethany's Book Review //
Prior to reading Sabotaged, I'd read the first book in the Alaskan Courage series, Submerged, but not the three books between Submerged and Sabotaged, the fifth book in this stand-alone series. Since  the main characters in this series are all related, this series can be read either in order or alone, which is something I liked. If you'd read the previous books then some of the characters you'll already be familiar with, but if not you can still enjoy and understand the story, enjoying it alone.
Sabotaged was a very action packed book, which is what fans of Dani Pettrey have come to expect and enjoy in her novels. The whole story takes place in a short period of time, making the story read very true to actual time. It made the book overall very easy to read, and one that would be considered a quicker read because of how the story was constantly moving. I was able to read the whole book in two sittings just because of how the story flowed and was easy to read. Some books are just quicker reads by nature, and this one is definitely one that I'd put in that category, making it a good weekend read.
This novel was one I knew would be a fun, quick read due to the suspenseful theme. The story was very fast and was constantly moving, however I felt there was an element of the story that I just wasn't connecting with. While the suspense was there and kept me reading, I felt like for some reason the story didn't grip me in the way I would have liked considering the mystery aspect of the novel. While I did enjoy the suspense, I didn't feel like it really had that suspenseful factor that keeps me on the edge of my seat. There were several scenes that were so short, or had no transition and changed so quick that I didn't really understand what was going on, and at times these scenes were confusing. I knew that these scenes were important to the plot and contained pieces of the mystery puzzle, but they happened so fast with so little details that I felt rather lost and confused. I especially felt this way about the ending, which in my opinion happened too fast.

While there were scenes where I felt like the story didn't really grip me, I did enjoy the character development in this story. It was interested seeing the characters and their pasts, and how that effected the story and how they acted in certain situations. The thread of redemption and fresh starts was a nice addition to the plot, and it was nice to have this dimension added to the story.

Overall, I enjoyed this book as a quick one time read. It was an exciting adventure, but I just didn't feel like the suspense level was there for me. However I'm still grateful for the opportunity to read this book and would recommend it!

D I S C L A I M E R ::: I received a complementary copy of this book from the publisher for the sole purpose of this review. I was not paid to promote this book, and all thoughts expressed are my own, completely honest and unbiased.