Saturday, October 27, 2012

Strong and Stubborn by Kelly Eileen Hake

This is the third book in the Husbands for Hire series by Kelly Eileen Hake.  This book focuses on Noami as the last unclaimed bride in Hope Falls.  Michael Strode is a recently widowed carpenter setting out to try and make a new life for himself and his son.

One of my first thoughts about this book is that it is not a stand alone book.  I think you must have read the first two books in order to follow the third.  With that being said I read the first two books when they were first published and it has been a while so I really could have used a refresher.  I got a little lost at times trying to remember details from the previous books.  There is a handy little guide that gives a brief description of each character that was helpful though. I might have to go back and read all three in a row in order to make sure I got it all.  There is alot going on in each book. 

Naomi and the other three ladies in the story put an ad in the paper for husbands.  They are landowners in what used to a be a mining town and is now a logging town thanks to the mine collapse and their attempt to redeem the town and their lives.  They had no clue that when they got to Hope Falls they would be greeted by many men who came as a result of the ad.  The first two books cover two of them women meeting their men and the third focuses on Naomi.  The men were happy to work for food and shelter as long as the women were still available to woo, but with just one woman left the game changes.  Michael has no idea what he has happened upon in Hope Falls.  He simply came for a job and a fresh start from his wife's family.  The story also continues with the story of Braden and Cora and their struggle to determine what their relationship will be after the accident. 

I liked this book. The story wrapped up part of it, but also left so questions and more story that needed to be told.  I feel like it set up for more books to be written in either this series or an additional series.  I didn't feel like Braden and Cora's story had been completed and then there is more to tell about all those loggers wanting brides. 

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

I have said over and over that I am a sucker for the mail order bride or the bride who marries someone she barely knows. I was excited to read the description of this book because it is a a collection of short stories about just that!  I am not familiar with all the authors, but I do enjoy reading Cathy and Kelly Hake's works so I knew I wouldn't be disappointed.  

There are 9 different short stories in the collection.  Overall the collection was good, but I think that the 7 in the middle absolutely went together in a collection and the first and last were a little out of place. 

The last story, Finishing Touches, was good, but didn't fit the wagon train/frontier genre.   The first story, Joie de Vivre,  was not only out of place, but just wasn't an enjoyable read for me.  There was too much french without translation and I understand a little bit of french from the years I took classes.  The setting of the first story didn't appeal to me and therefore made the story just ok.

THe 2nd story, Button Strong Bride,  was wagon train marriage that was right up my alley.  I liked the button strand that was a major part of the sweet story.  I had never heard of it before.  I don't know if is was a real tradition to start a button collection for young girls, but if it wasn't it should have been. 

The 3rd story, The Wedding Wagon, was once again a wagon train marriage that I really enjoyed.  It was a sweet story of a young lady marrying her best friends brother that she has only met just a few times.  I think I would have liked to have read more about this family.

Stories 4-7 were all connected.  In Halter to Alter four sisters are sent off to be mail order brides, but arrive to meet a man who wanted four bridles and not four brides.  All four books are the stories of the four sisters and the men that win their hearts.  The other stories are From Carriage to Marriage, From Bride to Pride, From Alarming to Charming.  I enjoyed reading about the sisters and how they found love.

The 8th story was A Vow Unbroken.  It was a sweet mail order bride story that I enjoyed reading.  It probably had the most spiritual content of any of the stories and made for a nice afternoon read.

The last story, Finishing Touches, was a good story although a little misplaced.  It was an arranged marriage were the sister took the place of the bride.  The setting was different than the majority of the book, but still a good read. 

This book was given to me free of charge from Barbour Publishing in exchange for my honest review. 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

I think each of Karen Witemeyer's books is better than the last.  This one was a real page turner!  The Archer brother's are committed to holding on to their land since the death of their father.  They never leave and they never let anybody on their land.  Meredith Hayes overhears somebody threatening the Archer land and feels duty bound to warn the brothers, especially Travis Archer who saved her life when she was just a child.  Meredith runs off from her Aunt, Uncle, cousin and the man courting her that is threatening the Archers.  She gets there in time to warn them but is forced to stay on their land, in their house and her reputation has been compromised by staying with four single men.  Her aunt and uncle will not hear of anything other than her marrying one of the Archer's.  Meredith's heart has always belonged to Travis Archer, even if he didn't know it.  The four brothers draw straws to see who gets to marry Meredith, not who has to marry Meredith.  All Meredith wants is to be loved by Travis Archer, but is it possible?

This was another hit by Karen Witemeyer.  I wish she could write them faster!  I would love to read about the other brother's in the story and where life takes them at the end of the book.  I definitely will read this again, I have already read it twice! Waiting on her next book.....

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Twice a Bride by Mona Hodgson - My Review

Twice a Bride is the fourth book in the Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek series.  I was eager to read this book because I thoroughly enjoyed the first three books in the series.  I wasn't disappointed in the book, I thought it was another great book by Mona Hodgson.  I do however think that it is important to read the other books in the series.  I found myself trying to recall things from the past books to help pull things together in the current story.  The stories don't really continue from book to book, but the characters reoccur.

The fourth book is not about a Sinclair sister, but about Willow Peterson who is the sister in law of Ida Sinclair Raines.  I had a hard time recalling Willow's backstory and felt myself needing to reread.  There was enough detail to help me understand the character again though.  Willow is a widow and an artist.  She is trying to figure out how to make her own way after the loss of her husband and then her father.  Trenton Van Der Veer is a photographer setting down roots for the first time after leaving his fiance that was not who he thought.  Trenton needs an artist to colorize photos and paint portraits of his photgraphs.  Willow answers his ad in the local paper and is thrilled about doing what she loves.  Both are very guarded emotionally and not expecting to ever find love again.  All the same characters are back and Harlan Sinclair finally makes it to Cripple Creek to reunite with his daughters and meet the rest of his new family, but he doesn't arrive without a few surprises.

Overall this is a good book that I would recommend as part of a series. It was a nice ending to the series.  I will look for more books to come out by Mona Hodgson. I was given this book free by the publisher in exchange for my review.