Mistletoe and Mr. Right (Moose Springs, Alaska #2) by Sarah Morgenthaler

Moose Springs, Alaska has small town charm but with the new resort being built it’s residents aren’t too happy with socialite Lana Montgomery. Lana has been coming to Moose Springs since she was a child and those memories are some of her warmest. Bringing tourism into the town will help it survive and Lana is determined that it would. As the owner of a new condo being developed up the mountain, she’s not looked on too fondly by anyones except bar owner, Rick Harding. His ho-hum life has been turned upside down by this stiletto wearing, Santa Moose stalking, dynamo. He’s see’s right through her business persona to the soft hearted woman beneath and he’s lost at first site.

I love Moose Springs, Alaska! I am a huge fan of the first novel and Zoey and Graham’s story and loved to see these characters evolve. Lana was a fun side character but how was she as the main character in her own story? I actually liked her a lot! I could totally see why Rick fell for her. Her tough exterior surrounded a warm gooey inside. I do wish the author hadn’t given her this one annoying to saying throughout the book. I found it out of character and annoying. Despite that one word, these were two characters that were completely likable and it was a cute romance novel. I will admit it’s always weird to be reading a Christmas themed book in October, but that’s marketing for you!

The best part of this book was the return of all of the town’s characters and having their stories evolve. Graham and Zooey get a small story arc and Ash and Easton’s sarcasm continues to reign. This is a quirky small town that deserves its own show or movie. Hey, if Robyn Carr can do it with Virgin River, my vote goes to Moose Springs getting their own show too! You can only hope! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Please click this link to purchase!* Mistletoe and Mr. Right (Moose Springs, Alaska Book 2)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small payment.

This Chicks Audio Review: Dead Witch Walking (The Hollows #1) by Kim Harrison and Narrated by Marguerite Gavin

One of my new favorite things to do is to revisit previous favorites by listening to them as audiobooks. Kim Harrison’s Hollows series has been one of my favorite urban fantasy series and recently when she came out with a surprise novel in what was a completed series I decided to take a look back and listen to the first novel, Dead Witch Walking. Narrated by Marguerite Gavin, I was pleasantly surprised at how much the main character Rachel Morgan, still resonated with a much older me.

The Hollows series is set in a world just like ours, but where magic and paranormal beings are commonplace ever since “The Turn” when a genetically altered tomato killed a good portion of the human race. Rachel Morgan is a witch, but she’s also an investigator, and Dead Witch Walking is the start of her story and her investigative team of Ivy, a living vampire, and Jenks, a pixy. The three of them live and work out of an old church in the Hollows, the more magical part of Cincinnati. Rachel has a price on her head and in order to pay it off she tries to bring in evidence against mysterious millionaire Trent Kalamack, that shows he’s dealing in Brimstone a street drug. In Dead Witch Walking you get a lot of set up, not only to the world, but also to the characters and Marguerite Gavin does a great job at voicing all of them. My favorite voice being Jenks, who’s a small pixy (picture tinkerbell sized) and his voice somewhat matches that size. It’s too cute.

Rachel Morgan, despite her witchiness, attracts trouble. She’s somewhat of a blunderer but she has great instincts and in this case she’s taken on a bit more than she can chew in Trent Kalamack who exhibits supreme bad guy vibes in this first novel. In the end, Rachel gets what she wants by paying off her debt and getting rid of the price on her head, but it’s not exactly done in the way that she hoped. Dead Witch Walking is a mad-cap adventure story with great characters that develop into true friends and a great investigative team, and also sets the story for many of the things that happen to and for Rachel in the next 15 novels. If you love well done urban fantasy novels and have the patience to see your character grow into the kick a&$ she becomes, please pick this up, listen to it, or plug it directly into your brain in whatever means possible. This book is good, but the series is even better and I’m excited that Marguerite Gavin does such a great job with the narration because I’ll be listening to them for a while to come. (15 books! Sixteen if you count the flashback, The Turn.)

❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase the audiobook!* Dead Witch Walking: Hollows, Book 1

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: A Murderous Relation (Veronica Speedwell #5) by Deanna Raybourn

In 1888, London is being stalked by the notorious Jack the Ripper. At the same time as those gruesome murders Veronica and her friend Stoker are asked by Lady Wellington to step in to recover a diamond gifted to a “friend” of the royal Prince, Veronica’s half brother. Not wanting to be manipulated by a family who has never recognized her, Veronica refuses, until Lady Welly comes down sick and they discover in her notes that she’s afraid the Prince may have something to do with these Jack the Ripper killings.

Veronica and Stoker’s adventurous have something to do with my own recent trend towards reading historical mysteries. It’s intriguing to think that before technology, murders were solved by only acting questions and in Veronica’s case, good instinct. I like the way my brain works to solve these mysteries along with the main characters!

Veronica and Stoker, not hampered by their societal connections have become rather known for solving crimes and despite her misgivings Veronica can’t help but look into the goings on behind giving an enormous diamond gift to a known benefactress or madame. This mystery, like the last novel did for Stoker, allows the reader to connect with Veronica by allowing us to see her interactions with the prince. A brother she’d never met, and one who never knew he had a secret sister. I enjoyed those tender scenes, or as tender as one can be in Victorian England.

The first four novels in this series set the stage and amped up the tension in a will they or won’t they between Veronica and Stoker until this novel, where we’d assume there would be a conclusive union. I’ll admit to a little impatience on that front because the investigation got in the way of my romance, but finally, as the book was ending Veronica and Stoker found the time (my feelings and words) to embrace their future. Finally! I’ll admit I was disappointed that it happened at the end of the book, and again left you with a feeling of ‘now what?’ because I’m not sure where I want to see them go from here. Together, yes, but how? I’m curious to see how the author will settle them into their future. It will be untraditional, of that I’m pretty certain.

Do you like historical mysteries? If so, Deanna Raybourn’s Veronica Speedwell series may be the right books for you. I’ve really enjoyed them and look forward to re-reading them as I’ve purchased every one!

❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* A Murderous Relation (A Veronica Speedwell Mystery)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you should purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

It’s Monday, what are you reading? (9/28/2020)

Happy Monday! It’s that time when we look towards a new week and what book we are reading that will help us get a quick start!

This post originated over on Book Date, so thanks for the idea and letting me continue on the discussion about what books I am reading.

JUST FINISHED

I re-read this novel by Kristen Ashley. It had been a few years since I’d read it and I wondered if my feelings for it would have changed at all with a second read. Nope! I may write a review for this one, so hang tight!

JUST STARTED

I’ve had this one on my wishlist at the library for awhile and thought this weekend my be a good time for a light hearted romance! So far, I like it! It’s very light and sweet. The perfect start to my week!

What book is giving a kick start to your week?

Deb

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: A second love…

OK, it’s confession time! I have another love in my life besides books. Well, and my husband, dog, cat, and family. Alright, I do have a lot of loves in my life, but I do have another! It’s time for my confession.

I have never been a girly girl. I was a tomboy growing up and I loved to play sports. I wore jeans all the time and didn’t like to wear dresses. My mom despaired of my ever wearing a dress anywhere besides church! So, two years ago when a friend approached me on Facebook and asked me to join her group. I was curious. What is this VIP group? I’ll admit, I’m a cynic so I wondered what she was selling. I have a ton of friends who are in direct sales and I do my due diligence purchasing products in small amounts but this VIP group was a new thing! I joined to support her and found myself among ladies who laughed, played games, and looked at these cute nail strips that came in all these different colors and designs. To support my friend I purchased Color Street’s Buy 3 Get 1 free sale and I was hooked.

I hated painting my nails! BUT these strips were so easy, I just stuck them on, stripped the excess off with my thumb and vôilá! I had chick nails! So, this year in the pandemic this VIP Group became my bright spot. So, I decided, what the heck I’m going to try to sell them! I became a Color Street Independent Stylist and I created my own VIP group. I hope I’m bringing some joy into other ladies lives, like my friend Jennifer did in mine.

If you are on Facebook (USA), please feel free to join. Click the picture below and ask to be invited in! I’ll accept. I don’t discriminate, so if any gents would like to join please feel free, however if you become obnoxious I’ll give you the boot. LOL

Click here to join my VIP Group!

If you would like to check out Color Street nails because you’re curious but don’t want to join my VIP Group I totally understand! Here is that link, please check it out!

https://www.colorstreet.com/DebKehoe/products (also only ships in the USA, sorry!)

So, how does this tie to my love for books? Well, other than I can see my hand in pretty nails holding that book, it really doesn’t. BUT I’m going to tie them together for this very special blog feature! (Oh, and a big shout out to Rachel and Martina who are also Independent Stylists and created these book graphics!)

I thought it would be fun to pair a nail strip set (100% real nail polish dry sets) with an answer to the question in the graphic on the left.

Well, I love romances that take place in tropical islands, but I’ll admit I read a great thriller that was set in the Antarctica and that locale was totally fascinating! I’m going with the exotic!

This one is totally easy! My mom read The Hobbit and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz to me at night when I was little. She would voice all of the characters and to this day I love fantasy novels! I tend towards romantic fantasy now like Ilona Andrews, Patricia Briggs, and Anne Bishop.

Well, it’s not Lord of the Flies! LOL. I think a Nancy Drew novel might be fun. At least I wouldn’t be bored because I’d have a mystery to solve!

I like them both, but I’ll admit that as I get older and my eyesight gets worse the light on an e-book helps me read late into the night.

Right now I’m listening to the Jane Yellowrock series by Faith Hunter. They are filled with action, Jane is a strong female lead, and there’s a hot love interest. Khristine Hvam does an amazing job too!

Is that even possible? Hmm. Maybe Lord of the Rings because it wasn’t quite as long? I did love those movies!

I have two favorites, really but when mixed together they are my go-to! Romantic-Fantasy!

What’s not on my TBR pile should be the question! I’m really looking forward to reading Alexa Martin’s new book Snapped! and C.L. Polk’s The Bargain, but I’ve also been delving back into reading some comfort novels. I just finished a Kristen Ashley novel I read years ago called Knight. It was still pretty good!

I absolutely do! There’s nothing I hate more than when the cover doesn’t give credence to the plot in the book. Or makes it seem like a rom-com when it’s actually a pretty dark novel! A couple of my favorites are:

Well, any of the above four to start!

Please don’t ever bend the corner of a page as your bookmark! Tear off a scrap of paper, use a Starbucks sleeve, use an actual bookmark, there are so many pretty ones you can buy and get for free! This is a pet peeve of mine. Also bending back spines, but don’t even get me started on that topic.

Oh boy, I have so many and every time I read a book I gather more favorite couples. So, I’m going to go with a couple who had had longevity. Around 47-48 books I think? Eve and Roarke from J.D. Robb’s In Death series. I don’t know how she does it, but these books are rarely bad. And there are so many of them!

How did I do? I thought this exercise was pretty fun!

Have a great day you all!

Deb

This Chick Read: Smash It! by Francina Simone

Liv is tired of being afraid to take chances and after showing up to a Halloween party in khaki shorts and a hoodie she decides to go for it, have experiences, and change her life! First up is trying out for the school play, a hip-hop version of Othello. Scared to death, her two best friends Dré and Eli, also try out and the drama begins. Having two boys for best friends has led Liv to make the safe choices but when a cute boy in the play asks her out, she risks it all. How will this affect her feelings for her two friends? You’re going to have to read this charming un-putdown-able novel.

I’m not even lying. I stayed up until 1am on a work night reading this book. How Liv feels about herself is so relatable to 90% of the female population. She thinks she’s overweight, has bad hair, and isn’t cute when she’s the complete opposite! She’s fun, funny, a kick butt singer, can dance, is curvy, and should be a self confident young woman. When she tries out for this play and says yes to her first date a whole new world opens before her and her two friends take notice!

What can I say about Eli and Dré? They were totally different from each other, had real problems that added a nice bit of conflict to the story, and both loved Liv to death. Their friendship was one of my favorite things about this book, and despite their lives changing as they got older, they could all rely on each other. To a point. But what would a story be without a little drama, right?

This was a totally fun book, that felt real. I didn’t feel like a middle aged woman reading a teen novel. I felt like these kids anxiety’s are what people of any age feel on a daily basis. Their stories were relatable, their triangle was interesting, and each of their story arc’s read true. Despite your own age, Smash It! is a book that needs to be read. It may make you look differently at your own life, but if not, it will at least entertain you with their’s. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for an honest review and it was honest!

Click this link to purchase!* Smash It!

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

* Amazon Associate- if you buy this book through the above link I may make a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Kind of a Big Deal (Flirting with Fame #4) by Mary Ann Marlowe

Noah Kennedy and Lucy Griffin were high school sweethearts, best friends, and soul mates. When Noah left for New York to pursue his dream of becoming a rock star he and Lucy tried the long distance thing, but Lucy wanted someone who’d be there every day, not someone who would be on tour all the time. It was too similar to her absentee father who only dropped in when it was convenient to him. So, Lucy broke Noah’s heart. They remained friends, seeing each other only occasionally, but she was always the girl that got away. When Noah finds out that Lucy is now divorced he’s determined to win her for good.

The thing I love about Reading a series where each character in the gang gets their own story, is that by the time their story gets written we’ve heard their back story and have kind of gotten to know the character. Noah was definitely in the other books, but he was always the jerk and because of that I was never drawn to him. Reading his story I now know why he’s a jerk, but knowing that didn’t necessarily make him more likable. The only thing that did was his devout love for Lucy. Then there was Lucy. She’d obviously not had a good father figure and every man was judged against his failures and Noah had too many like comparisons, or at least on the surface. She had a lot of past grievances to overcome and Noah had a big mountain to climb.

The first 40% of this novel was spent catching up on these characters story arc. I’ll be honest, this became problematic for me because I got impatient. I wasn’t very attached to either character and their previous struggles, although eye-opening, didn’t help me care for them. However, once I hit that 40% and they finally re-connected, the story moved forward at a quicker pace and I sped through the remainder of the novel. From that point forward I was rooting for Noah. I’ll admit, I never cared too deeply for Lucy but wanted Noah to finally achieve his own HEA, even if it was with her. I didn’t think she was too deserving.

This was not my favorite book in the series. In that first 40% I kind of felt like their lives were just being told to me and the narration felt distant. I didn’t live their experiences with them. I’m glad to have read Kind of a Big Deal because it wraps up the series (I think!) but my favorite by this author is still her first book Some Kind of Wonderful. If you haven’t read that novel, please give it a try! It’s the first book and if you love it like I did, you will want to hear the rest of these band member’s stories. ❤️❤️❤️❣️

I was given a copy of this novel by the author for my honest review. I lost the copy and purchased the novel because of my love for this series. My review remains unbiased and completely honest.

Click this link to purchase!* Kind of a Big Deal (Flirting with Fame)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

* Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

It’s Monday, what are you reading? (9/21/2020)

I did get a good bit of reading in this last week despite a crazy work week and some more birthday shenanigans at home. In my family all of my siblings, my husband and my mother’s birthdays are within six weeks of each other so we seem to have a party almost every weekend. (Yes, socially distanced, we all live together!) Let’s catch you up on what I’ve been up to!

This post originated over on Book Date, so thanks for the idea and letting me continue on the discussion about what books I am reading.

JUST FINISHED

I’ve read this series but saw the audiobooks up for sale and picked them up. I’ve been enjoying them all again, wrapping up with the third, Wayfarer’s Keep. This author writes so well and keeps me entirely entertained!

JUST STARTED

I love books about young women finding their power. I’m curious to see how she uses her new found confidence! This one is off to a quick start and I like the author’s voice so far!

Now that you know what I’m up to, catch me up on the books on your nightstand!

Happy Monday!

Deb

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: My Top 5 Most Anticipated Book Releases- Oct’20

I love fall! The weather is wonderful and you just want to be outside. Maybe it will be nice enough to read one of these books on my back patio? You can only hope!

#5 MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE

The premise for this series is so great! A group of guys read romance novels to help them figure out their women and improve their love lives. The first one was totally cute, but I’ll admit I was disappointed in the second in the series. Will Crazy Stupid Bromance reel me back in? We’ll see!

Synopsis: A hacktivist and a cat café owner decode the friend zone in this romantic comedy from the author of Undercover Bromance.

Alexis Carlisle and her cat café, ToeBeans, have shot to fame after she came forward as a victim of a celebrity chef’s sexual harassment. When a new customer approaches to confide in her, the last thing Alexis expects is for the woman to claim they’re sisters. Unsure what to do, Alexis turns to the only man she trusts—her best friend, Noah Logan.
 
Computer genius Noah left his rebellious teenage hacker past behind to become a computer security expert. Now he only uses his old skills for the right cause. But Noah’s got a secret: He’s madly in love with Alexis. When she asks for his help, he wonders if the timing will ever be right to confess his crush. 
 
Noah’s pals in The Bromance Book Club are more than willing to share their beloved “manuals” to help him go from bud to boyfriend. But he must decide if telling the truth is worth risking the best friendship he’s ever had.

Click this link to purchase!* Crazy Stupid Bromance (Bromance Book Club)

#4 MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE

It’s certainly not the cover that makes me want to read this book. A very disappointing choice by the publisher. This novel as been buzzing for a couple of months and I’ll admit to wanting to know what all the fuss is about!

Synopsis:


A Life No One Will Remember. A Story You Will Never Forget.

France, 1714: in a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever—and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.

Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue, and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world.

But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

Click this link to purchase!* The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

#3 MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE

I loved The Tourist Attraction, the first book in this series. Mistletoe and Mr. Right looks to be just as cute and I can’t wait to get started on this one!

Synopsis:

How the moose (almost) stole Christmas.

Lana Montgomery is everything the quirky small town of Moose Springs, Alaska can’t stand: a rich socialite with dreams of changing things for the better. But Lana’s determined to prove that she belongs…even if it means trading her stilettos for snow boots and tracking one of the town’s hairiest Christmas mysteries: the Santa Moose, an antlered Grinch hell-bent on destroying every bit of holiday cheer (and tinsel) it can sink its teeth into.

And really…how hard could it be?

The last few years have been tough on Rick Harding, and it’s not getting any easier now that his dream girl’s back in town. When Lana accidentally tranquilizes him instead of the Santa Moose, it’s clear she needs help, fast…and this could be his chance to finally catch her eye. It’s an all-out Christmas war, but if they can nab that darn moose before it destroys the town, Rick and Lana might finally find a place where they both belong…together.

Click this link to purchase!* Mistletoe and Mr. Right (Moose Springs, Alaska Book 2)

#2 MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE

Love, love, love this series. It’s clever, it’s current, and it’s football season all the time! Alexa Martin strikes the right chord in these funny rom-com’s. I can’t wait to get started!

Synopsis:

With the stakes this high, it’s no longer just a game for the Mustang’s quarterback in this romance by the author of Blitzed.

Elliot Reed is living her best life—or pretending to. She owes it to her dad’s memory to be happy and make the most of her new job as Strategic Communications Manager for the Denver Mustangs. Things are going well until star quarterback Quinton Howard Jr. decides to use the field as his stage and takes a knee during the national anthem.

As the son of a former professional athlete, Quinton knows the good, the bad, and the ugly about football. He’s worked his entire life to gain recognition in the sport, and now that he has it, he’s not about to waste his chance to change the league for better. Not even the brilliant but infuriating Elliot, who the Mustangs assign to manage him, will get Quinton back in line.

A rocky initial meeting leads to more tension between Quinton and Elliot. But as her new job forces them to spend time together, Elliot realizes they may have more in common than she could’ve imagined. With her job and his integrity on the line, this is one coin toss that nobody can win.

Click this link to purchase!* Snapped (Playbook, The)

MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE OF OCT’20

This book sounds amazing. Set in a Regency England type world, a young woman has to pick between becoming a Magus and forgoing a chance at love or picking love and having her magic obliterated for the safety of her future children. It seems especially fitting to read this female empowerment novel during a time when the US is undergoing a political fight to replace a strong woman on the Supreme Court. A choice that could take women back in rights by decades. I can’t wait to see how this fictional character finds the right balance of claiming her own power and not giving up on love.

Synopsis:

Beatrice Clayborn is a sorceress who practices magic in secret, terrified of the day she will be locked into a marital collar that will cut off her powers to protect her unborn children. She dreams of becoming a full-fledged Magus and pursuing magic as her calling as men do, but her family has staked everything to equip her for Bargaining Season, when young men and women of means descend upon the city to negotiate the best marriages. The Clayborns are in severe debt, and only she can save them, by securing an advantageous match before their creditors come calling. 

In a stroke of luck, Beatrice finds a grimoire that contains the key to becoming a Magus, but before she can purchase it, a rival sorceress swindles the book right out of her hands. Beatrice summons a spirit to help her get it back, but her new ally exacts a price: Beatrice’s first kiss . . . with her adversary’s brother, the handsome, compassionate, and fabulously wealthy Ianthe Lavan. 

The more Beatrice is entangled with the Lavan siblings, the harder her decision becomes: If she casts the spell to become a Magus, she will devastate her family and lose the only man to ever see her for who she is; but if she marries—even for love—she will sacrifice her magic, her identity, and her dreams. But how can she choose just one, knowing she will forever regret the path not taken?

Click this link to purchase!* The Midnight Bargain

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase a book through the above links I’ll receive a small stipend.

These are some fun sounding books, aren’t they? What books or authors are you looking forward to reading next month? There are a lot of great ones!

Happy reading!

Deb

This Chick Read: Well Played by Jen DeLuca

Stacey has spent the last two years of the Renaissance Fair playing a buxom barmaid by day and hooking up with hot guy and musician Dex by night. When the month long fair ended her two good friends got engaged and Stacey felt dissatisfied with how she was living her life. So, one night after too many drinks she reaches out to Dex on his fan site and opens up about her feelings. Surprisingly he emails back and they spend the next 10 months becoming best friends and falling in love. There was a lot more to her hot hook-up than she thought! Or was there? She’s been played!

I couldn’t help but compare Well Played to Well Met, the first novel in this series. I may be doing this book a disservice because I LOVED Well Met. The setting surprised me and I loved the banter between Emily and Simon. There was a lot to like about Well Played but it just didn’t live up to my expectations.

Here’s what I liked. Stacey was a plus-sized heroine, which let’s face it, most of us are and so we can easily identify with her body self image insecurities. I loved that we still had that Renaissance Fair setting. I actually do wish that more of it had been set at the fair though. I did also like the friendships in this novel. They were all there for each other and had each others backs. If you have a great pack of friends you can survive most everything!

Here’s what weighed against my rating. (I can’t say dislike!) It took too long to get to our hero and heroine being together. There was a LOT of email exchanges and texts and I just didn’t feel all of the emotions I was supposed to feel. I liked our hero, but I didn’t love him. There was one scene that just really bothered me! I can’t get into who he is or what that scene was, so this is kind of lame to even mention but that scene set him up as being weak. I just couldn’t look at him the same after it. Now that I’m putting it on paper, that was really the main issue for me.

So, I liked Well Played, but I was disappointed at the same time. Maybe this is a case of building the book up too much in my head before actually reading it. I don’t know, but my rating reflects my feelings.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase!* Well Played

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.