The "Sydney Brides" contemporary romance series from author Kandy Shepherd comes to a wonderful conclusion with Book 3, "The Bridesmaid's Baby Bump".The "Sydney Brides" contemporary romance series from author Kandy Shepherd comes to a wonderful conclusion with Book 3, "The Bridesmaid's Baby Bump". I have really enjoyed getting to know the three friends and business partners known as "The Party Queens". While they are most definitely modern career women whose unique skills made their business a success, they are still very much women whose hearts have yearned for that special, once-in-lifetime, forever kind of love. "The Bridesmaid's Baby Bump" is the story of Eliza Dunne, the "smarts" of the party-planning business, and Jake Marlowe, a self-made billionaire entrepreneur. Eliza has been the bridesmaid, and Jake has been the best man, at the other two party-planners weddings to friends of Jake. While the attraction between Eliza and Jake has been sizzling for some time, it remained unfulfilled due to the long-drawn-out end to Jake's unhappy marriage. When they are finally able to act upon their fantasies of each other during a brief interlude, they try to tell themselves, and one another, that their time together is just a one-time thing. However, hearts will have their own way, and so will the hand of Fate. When Eliza finds out she is pregnant, she doesn't want Jake to know--but a baby is a growing secret that can only be hidden for so long. Both Eliza and Jake have some serious issues of trust from their childhood experiences and also their adult romantic relationships. Both of them are career-driven and hadn't planned on the "baby bump", but maybe that new little life is just what both of them need to bring them each the happiness they deserve. They just have to figure themselves out first, and then, just maybe, a bright new future is shining for the three of them together. This is a very well-written romantic story which will involve the reader and have them rooting for the happily-ever-after. Author Kandy Shepherd is always a great storyteller, and she excels here at showing both sides of the relationship and makes the concerns of both characters equal and very real. I highly recommend the "Sydney Brides" series for lovers of heartfelt, engaging contemporary romance.
Lynne Marshall writes compelling contemporary romantic fiction, and her storytelling is a reader's treat. "His Pregnant Sleeping Beauty" is part of "TLynne Marshall writes compelling contemporary romantic fiction, and her storytelling is a reader's treat. "His Pregnant Sleeping Beauty" is part of "The Hollywood Hills Clinic Series"--an inside look at the royalty of the entertainment world. What I so enjoyed about this book was the perspective from the hero's point of view--it really enhanced the emotional aspects of the story. Joseph Matthews, owner of a paramedic service, took pride in his work with the prestigious Hollywood Hills Clinic. While the clients were celebrities with a roster of news-worthy issues, the clinic itself was top-notch all the way, with an elite medical team providing the highest quality care. On one of his night-shift runs, Joe comes to the aid of a young woman who is being attacked. He scares off the assailant, but not before sustaining a knife wound to the ribs. The young woman had taken a serious fall and was unconscious--and she was also bearing bruises from previous abuse. Joe watches over his "sleeping beauty" in her room at the clinic, and he is stunned to learn that she is pregnant. When Carey Spencer finally wakes up in unfamiliar surroundings, it takes a while to get her bearings, but her relief that her baby is safe helps her to remember what has happened. On the run from an abusive relationship, Carey took a bus to anywhere just to get away. Even though Joe has serious trust issues from the betrayal that destroyed his marriage, he finds himself offering Carey a place to stay in his own home. With the clinic staff vouching for him, Carey puts aside her doubts and takes him up on his offer. As Joe and Carey get to know each other, an attraction grows, but Joe is very much one of the walking-wounded, and he tries to put up barriers between himself and Carey. He also has a very personal secret which makes him reluctant to let his heart be vulnerable again. With so many difficult circumstances to overcome, can Joe and Carey let love find its way into their lives? "His Pregnant Sleeping Beauty" is an involving romantic tale, with a realistic portrayal of two people who had to hit an emotional rock-bottom before they each found new hope for happiness.
Set at the end of WWI, "Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War" is a collection of short stories from nine top historical fiction authors.Set at the end of WWI, "Fall of Poppies: Stories of Love and the Great War" is a collection of short stories from nine top historical fiction authors. Loss and renewal, reunions both poignant and bittersweet, and a real feeling for the varying emotions of the time are all captured in this anthology. The authors and their works include: Marci Jefferson--"The Daughter of Belgium"; Lauren Willig--"The Record Set Right"; Jennifer Robson--"All for the Love of You"; Evangeline Holland--"After You've Gone"; Jessica Brockmole--"Something Worth Landing For"; Heather Webb--"Hour of the Bells"; Beatriz Williams--"An American Airman in Paris"; Kate Kerrigan--"The Photograph"; Hazel Gaynor--"Hush". The diversity of the authors' voices and storytelling styles adds a richness and depth to this evocative collage of a turbulent time in human history.
"The Girl from the Paradise Ballroom", from author Alison Love, offers an intriguing look at the lives of Italian immigrants living in England during"The Girl from the Paradise Ballroom", from author Alison Love, offers an intriguing look at the lives of Italian immigrants living in England during the tumultuous WWII Era. As the stirrings of war begin, a fateful meeting at the Paradise Ballroom between Olivia, a dancer, and Antonio, a singer, will weave together many lives through the course of the war and beyond. As Olivia's dreams of becoming a professional dancer fade, she must find a way to escape the murky life of the ballroom. Her marriage to the wealthy and kind Bernard seems to be a safe haven. Antonio's golden voice will not offer him escape from interment as suspicions against immigrants escalates along with the war's expansion across the globe. Secrets, unexpected twists, and insights into the human drama of the time all add to the telling of this tale. If you enjoy WWII fiction, you will enjoy this story of yet another chapter of the history of the far-reaching, never-ending effects of this monumental conflict of people and nations.
Devoted fans of the "Porter Family Series" from author Becky Wade are in for a reader's treat with Book 4, "Her One and Only". This time, the focus isDevoted fans of the "Porter Family Series" from author Becky Wade are in for a reader's treat with Book 4, "Her One and Only". This time, the focus is on Porter sister Dru, a former Marine now working as a bodyguard. When NFL standout Gray Fowler becomes the target of a stalker, Dru is assigned as his protector. While Gray soon realizes that Dru is a petite powerhouse, he still has trouble accepting an attractive young woman as his "executive protection agent". Dru is an expert in marksmanship and martial agents. She will need all of her skills--as well as her thoughts in sharp focus--to protect her client from danger and to protect her own heart from being captured by the handsome and appealing Gray. Her previous assignment did not go well, and keeping Gray safe is also part of rebuilding her career. A relationship between the two of them could lead to disaster, but hearts have a mind of their own. As the two of them get to know each other, the attraction becomes palpable and so does the need to trust and rely upon one another. The present danger is very real, and so is the necessity of letting go of past troubles. Will a renewal of faith and hope lead to a lasting love and life filled with happiness? "Her One and Only" is the finale for the "Porter Family Series", and I highly recommend the works of author Becky Wade for lovers of wonderfully-written, inspiring contemporary romantic fiction.
Kathleen Gerard is a talented storyteller who takes on the subjects of life and death, and what happens in-between, in "The Thing Is". With the help oKathleen Gerard is a talented storyteller who takes on the subjects of life and death, and what happens in-between, in "The Thing Is". With the help of a super-smart little Yorkie, who happens to be "Spirit Guide Dog", the author weaves together the threads of the lives of individuals at varying stages in their journey from their time on Earth to their after-life final destination. "Prozac", with his keen intelligence, his nose for sniffing out the heart of the matter, and his dear little "woofie face", is serving this incarnation of his own existence as a pet therapy dog. Meredith Mancuso, a writer deeply grieving the unexpected, violent death of her fiancé, connects with Prozac when she is inveigled by her sister to care for the little darling while his elderly owner, Helen, recovers from an injury. Realizing how much Meredith needs his help, Prozac enlists the aide of his friends and fans at Evergreen Gardens, an independent living facility where he visits once a week. With the help of a small, but mighty, spiritual guide, and a sassy, savvy group of seniors, Meredith may just let go of the past, return to the land of the living, and reach out for a second chance at love. Life is always more or less than you expect--it is never exactly what you envision. However, keep the faith, and remember that "sweet" will always be the second half of "bittersweet".
Author Victoria Bylin’s touching inspirational contemporary romance, “Someone Like You” is so well-paced that you are immediately drawn into the livesAuthor Victoria Bylin’s touching inspirational contemporary romance, “Someone Like You” is so well-paced that you are immediately drawn into the lives of the people on the pages. As the story unfolds, each character experiences much personal growth as they strive to overcome the personal and professional dilemmas they face. Each of them is at a different place in their journey of faith, and yet, they are all traveling toward the same destination. Julia Dare is still exploring her newfound Christianity, all the while raising her young son, Max, and keeping close ties with her widowed mother, Ellen. Julia’s event-planning business, Dare to Dream, is seeking that one big account to solidify its success. Caliente Springs is a beautiful old resort—classic in style, and classy in its unwavering commitment to premium customer service. Just like Dare to Dream, Caliente Springs needs a boost, and Julia is eager to land the account. Upon her arrival, she is stunned to learn that Zeke Monroe, her college sweetheart, is the resort manager. Both are delighted at the reunion—feelings between them still linger—but Julia has a secret that may keep them apart forever. Zeke also is trying to hide the truth—he’s not the man Julia once knew—he’s adrift in his faith and troubled by regrets over his difficult relationship with his late father. As matters of business and personal relationships become more complex all around them, Julia and Zeke realize what their hearts have always known about each other. Can they both find the true path of ever-abiding faith and the reward of a future filled with happiness and lasting love? “Someone Like You” is a poignant reunion romance, one that is strengthened by very realistic handling of painful life issues. It is also graced with humor. How lovely the romance is between Julia and Zeke. He finds himself again in his love for her, and he is so caring and thoughtful of everyone around him. After her never-ending battles for control with Max’s self-absorbed father, Julia is renewed by realizing that she is indeed worthy of Zeke, and the two of them together are something very special. As for the humor in the story, don’t ever try to get the best of a goat—the goat will always “get your goat”. I was quite charmed by the secondary romance in the story—Julia’s mother, Ellen, has a dream come true. A recommended read for those with a special fondness for beautifully-etched characters and involving romantic storylines.