Cathleen Brogan thought life was going well; she is married to the love of her life, Mick, they have two beautiful daughters, and while they might not live in the lap of luxury they aren't on the streets begging for food either. But when her husband suddenly gets sick, she never expected the worst to happen....Burying Mick is one of the hardest things Cathleen has ever done. Now how is she to go on with her life?
The one good thing, if you can call it that, that comes from Mick's untimely death is the reappearance of his cousin, a priest, who was more a brother to Mick than even his own brother. Father Jerry Brogan was even the man that married Cathleen and Mick all those years ago. Since that day, they've not seen him, but upon hearing the news, he leaves Italy (where he was currently stationed) to make Mick's funeral in England. His last gift to his friend and non-blood brother is to speak at his funeral.
As a priest, as well as a family member, it is understandable for him to stay around to try and help the grieving widow out. But the thoughts and feelings that Jerry has for Cathleen are anything but pure and innocent, and when she lets him know that she feels the same, he is torn over what to do. Does he honor his vows to the priesthood or allow himself the one thing he's always wanted: companionship and love?
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For almost 30 years, Nora Roberts has captivated and enthralled readers with her novels, novels filled with a one-of-a-kind romance that is not only believable but relatable. With the debut of her newest trilogy, the Inn Boonsboro, THE NEXT ALWAYS follows in these same footsteps. Welcome to Boonsboro, Maryland!
Clare Brewster is a widow with three young (and charming) boys who grew up in this close knit community. After moving away at nineteen, married to her high school sweetheart Clint, it was Boonsboro that she returned to when her husband died in Iraq. Now, almost six years after her return, her bookstore is doing well, her boys are growing up fast, and she finally begins to see the looks that Beckett Montgomery gives her. Looks that she finds herself giving him back...
Beckett, along with his two brothers and his mother, are renovating the town's old inn. It's a big project, but with all the love they've invested in it to see their visions of the Inn Boonsboro returned to its former glory, they know all the hard work will soon pay off. During a brief tour of the unfinished building with Clare, sparks begin to fly. Beckett has been dreaming of Clare since high school, but has never made a move before due to the way her life turned out. But after years of fighting his desire for her, the romantic atmosphere inside the inn proves to be the spark needed to start the fire between them blazing. They almost share a kiss (which Beckett later deems “The Moment”), and the brief confusion on both of their parts after leads them to consider their feelings for one another. And so their fall into love begins, as they slowly start to see each other in a whole new light.
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The “Epic of Gilgamesh” comes alive with the vivid descriptions, characters, and crisp writing talent of Shauna Roberts! Although it is a retelling ofThe “Epic of Gilgamesh” comes alive with the vivid descriptions, characters, and crisp writing talent of Shauna Roberts! Although it is a retelling of an ancient myth, one that perhaps not all of us are as familiar with as, say, King Arthur, Like Mayflies in a Stream is written in such a way that it gives a fresh voice to an otherwise ordinary tale.
If you enjoy a good historical novel, or if you are already interested in anything related to mythology, then this is the book for you! No matter the age, from teens to adults, this makes a quick, fascinating read. Roberts provides a look into the past, during a time long ago, but connects the characters to the reader in such a way that you almost forget this is taking place centuries ago-- it feels real, and it's believable. As they say, human nature doesn't change much, even over thousands of years, but the strong connection to the characters is mostly because of Roberts' skills at weaving a story together.
My only criticism, if you can call if that, is the descriptions were a bit much at times. Not necessarily a bad thing, but due to my personal preference, there were times when Roberts' almost painted the scene too vividly-- such as during the battles or gory scenes. Again, this is more of personal preference, since I'm not one for gory movies/books and the scenes I talk about from Like Mayflies in a Stream are actually pretty tame compared to many stories out there.
4 STARS! After covering the “Epic of Gilgamesh” in my mythology class last semester, this was an interesting retelling of the story. I enjoyed the story Roberts created around the epic tale while still allowing the reader to glimpse the original “myth” beneath the story. Very well written, entertaining, and quick-- this is not like most historical novels, which cover 700 plus pages and seem to drag on instead of flow smoothly. A good recommendation for anyone, history fans or not, as a refreshing break from the normal paranormal and fantasy novels out there.
Although it was a bit slow to start out, and at times I almost (though not quite) got lost in the flow of the story, The Historian is a truly thrillinAlthough it was a bit slow to start out, and at times I almost (though not quite) got lost in the flow of the story, The Historian is a truly thrilling ride, and one I would highly suggest to anyone looking for something new to read!
Despite the fact that this book is about vampires, I can honestly say it's not like any of the other books out there on this subject. Different, unique, and one-of-a-kind are great words to describe this novel. You'll find no romanticized vampires in this novel!
I enjoyed how Elizabeth Kostova managed to tell this captivating story, weaving together not only the story from Paul and Helen's point of view (through letters and some of it though story telling on Paul's part), but also from the point of view of Paul's daughter. While switching from the two POV's may, at first, seem a bit confusing, Kostova did a magnificent job at it, and I can honestly say that there was only one or two spots where I was momentarily confused.
Since the novel was told in such a unique way, and done well, I really felt the connection to not only the story but the characters as well. They were not just words on a page, but honestly seemed like they were real. This was partly due to the lush details provided and partly due to the talent of the author. Not every author can pull this off, but fortunately Kostova did because, to be quiet honest, if she had not managed this, this story would have been drastically different, and a great deal harder to get through without losing interest.
4 STARS! A seamless twist of history and myth, The Historian is a great read for anyone that enjoys a good mystery. Mystery, suspense, a bit of historical accuracy, and even a dash of romance--- really, who wouldn't be interested in reading it? And don't let the vampire plot turn you away, I promise, it's nothing like any vampire story you've read before!
My first impression of this novel upon beginning it was "average". From the characters to the story line, nothing really stood out to me--- it soundedMy first impression of this novel upon beginning it was "average". From the characters to the story line, nothing really stood out to me--- it sounded like something we've heard countless times, both in books and real life.
Kristy, our heroine for Love Is a Battlefield, has your average life. She's been in her dream job for most of her life, and loves it. She falls for the 'perfect' man, only to later find out he's the wrong guy for her-- after being left at the alter and broken up with through a note, of all things. Now her life isn't so perfect, she's been replaced at work by the good-looking new guy, and her mother's trying to play match maker already.
Haven't we seen this before? And if not, doesn't it seem like the sort of thing you'd see in your own town? Personally, when I pick up a book, I want to escape from the real world, not jump into the slightly fictionalized version of the same thing! Then again, I've always had trouble getting into contemporary fiction/romance, especially Christian Fiction such as this. But no matter my own genre preferences, I simply felt like this book needed something more, something new.
All the characters seemed a bit common, not particularly strong in development. Despite being the main character, Kristy almost seemed to take a back seat to Ace at times, and even he wasn't as forward of a character as I would have liked. Plus, for more than 3/4 of the book, we knew next to nothing about him-- he just kept eluding to some "to be announced" reason why he came to take this new job, and I was hoping it would be something good that added to the plot, but in the end, when you find out, it's a big let down. I won't ruin it, but let's just say it adds about as much excitement to the book as watching grass grow.
From the conversations between the characters to the flow of the story line, everything just seemed a bit too predictable and bland to me. Honestly, I could practically tell you what the characters were going to say even before it came up-- it should not be that easy to predict! It wasn't a horribly written novel, but it didn't have any real "pop!" to it either.
And then there was the fact that, despite this being a Christian Fiction, I couldn't see, nor appreciate, the romance that was suppose to be in it. I know, it's suppose to be chaste-- but must it be invisible and fake too? That's my one problem with CF novels--- it's not that there may be the occasional undertone of religion in the novel (though, at times, that too can get annoying), but the fact that most authors in this genre seem to think that the romance must be as clean as the new snow! Come on, even the most strict of religious couples are not that boring in their relationships! Is there anything wrong with a bit of lust, a kiss or two? Unresolved sexual tension, when written well, can be just as sexy as the most erotic romance scenes!
3 STARS! Despite the mediocre story behind this novel, I can't say I hated the book-- not by any means. However, it was lacking in excitement, and romance, which are my only real criticisms. Otherwise, the book was a quick, and at times charming, read-- not too heavy, but a very light fiction novel. If you don't mind the brief mention of religious beliefs in your fiction (aka, Christian Fiction), then by all means, pick this one up when you get some spare time, but don't move it to the top of your wish list. ...more