October 6, 2012

book reviews: september 2012 recap

My September Read of the Month
My slacker blogger days continue, which is pretty obvious when you figure I'm just NOW compiling my top reads of September... on Oct. 6. Better late than never, no use crying over spilled milk and any myriad of cliches could fit the bill.

But that's hardly the point.

I left my old job the first week of September and started a new one the second week. My life has been more than a little chaotic, but I am happy. And a little mentally unstable. Just now when I went to look back at my recent book reviews, I had a moment of panic where I thought, "How could I have only reviewed one book the whole month?" only to realize I was looking at October instead of September. I'm going crazy, my friends, but I suppose it was inevitable.

The good news from all of this: I re-configured my list to look at September, and I realized I managed to throw down a few books and write reviews last month if nothing else. It's probably, because I was too tired to do anything but read. And crochet. And listen to audio books, which I renewed my interest in, but that's a post for another day.

Without further adieu, and to stop making a long post even longer, here's a recap of my September book reviews, including my read of the month.

Rescue Me by Rachel Gibson
A bad boy gets reformed and a prodigal daughter returns to her roots in Rachel Gibson's Rescue Me.

Back in Lovett, Texas, the story revolves around Sadie Hollowell, the daughter of a widowed rancher, and Vince Haven, ex-Navy Seal and big brother to the heroine of Any Man of Mine. (Read my review of Any Man of Mine here.)

Sadie is back in the town she left behind after high school to play the role of thirty-something bridesmaid to her twenty-something cousin. Dreading the questions of why she is unmarried and why she does not come home to visit her daddy more, Sadie asks Vince to be her date to the wedding. In town to visit his aunt, Vince is not looking for any strings, but finds himself tagging along as repayment for an earlier favor.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4 of 5

Sign of Seven trilogy by Nora Roberts
Ancestry, blood and love create a bond strong enough to go up against an ancient evil force in Nora Roberts Signs of Seven trilogy: Blood Brothers, The Hollow and The Pagan Stone.

Caleb, Fox and Gage have been linked before their birth on the same day, July 7. In honor of their mutual tenth birthday, the boys hike to the Pagan Stone, a legendary marker in the woods near their hometown, which is rumored to have mystical powers. The boys holds a makeshift ceremony to make themselves blood brothers. Instead of giving them the link they hoped, they unlock an evil power, which has been dormant more than 300 years.

As a result, every seven years, on the seventh day of the seventh month, the dark demon takes over the town of Hawkins Hollow for seven days, causing the locals to inexplicably turn on each other -- arson, murder, rape and more during an event dubbed the Seven. In the months preceding the Seven of their 31st birthday, the three men sense this year will be even worse and stronger than in years past. This year, the fight will be over, win or lose.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4.5 of 5

Finding Out by Sheryn MacMunn
A thirty-something woman's life is thrown into personal and financial upheaval when her prince charming turns out to be a toad in Sheryn MacMunn's Finding Out.

After seven years together, Sheila Davenport comes home from a business trip to find her boyfriend, Joe, has moved out, left her for another woman and cleared the bulk of their joint account. While her friends encourage her to move on and find someone else, Sheila is left to deal with the aftermath, which includes the need to find new bedroom furniture and pay months of unpaid bills left by her ex-creep. Throw in job drama and her life looks pretty bleak.

Then, Sheila befriends her next door neighbor, and 86-year-old woman with a full past. Through their friendship, Sheila develops the perspective and backbone necessary to tackle her issues.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4 of 5


Free Gift With Purchase by Jackie Pilossoph
Two sisters give finding love a second chance in Jackie Pilossoph's Free Gift With Purchase.

Emma was widowed and left to raise her daughter alone, while her older sister, Laura, recently split from her husband of more than 20 years after he left her for one of the women he was sleeping with. Both sisters are completely different. Emma is more fun-loving while Laura is responsible. Both rely on each other as they enter the dating world for a second time, now in their 40s.

While each copes with issues from their past, each enjoys relationships with varying types: womanizers, stalkers, liars and a string of Matts. Some of serious, some care-free, but all of them help each woman come out of her shell to make the change necessary to develop their lives.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4.5 of 5

Breaking the Rules by Cat Lavoie
Complicated hardly covers it when describing Roxy Rule's life in Cat Lavoie's debut novel, Breaking the Rules. (Read an excerpt here.)

Between clashing with her fiance over table linens and guests lists and working as an assistant for one of the most obnoxious bosses ever, Roxy's world is already chaotic when she sneaks a passionate kiss with her lifelong best friend, Ollie, as he departs for London. After the act stirs up some previously undetected emotions, she tries to settle them while dealing with everything else on her plate, which now includes having her two sisters move into her apartment. And one of them is pregnant and the father is a big surprise no one expected.

Will Roxy follow the rules and take the easiest path for her life or take a chance on the unknown?
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4.5 of 5

Finding Lucas by Samantha Stroh Bailey
Samantha Stroh Bailey's Finding Lucas offers a dose of humor and emotion for anyone who has ever wondered what could have been.

Jamie Ross has been with Derek for five years. Until recently, she has seen him as everything she wanted. She wakes up and realizes that not only is he not what she thought, but he has also done a number on her confidence.

Determined to find the Jamie she used to be, she decides to take a trip down memory lane and find her old boyfriend Lucas, the man who used to make her feel like she could do or be anything. At the same time, she becomes close to her boss, who is also going through relationship pains. Finding Lucas is the story of using the past to move on from the present to have a future.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4 of 5

Last Minute Love by Romi Moondi
Romi Moondi's hilarious story-telling is back with Last Minute Love, the sequel to her equally entertaining Year of the Chick.

When we last saw Romi Narinda, she had just met the man she's been chatting up for a whirlwind day in New York City. Though she thinks she may have found Mr. Right, she still has to deal with those pesky parents who have big plans for her.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4.5 of 5

The Other Way by Diane Strong
Diane Strong offers an intriguing and fast read with her novella The Other Way.

The Other Way tells the story of Isaac Fisher, an Amish man who felt compelled to leave his community and identity behind after he impregnates a woman during his teenage rumspringa. Unhappy in his new life, and longing for the life -- and love -- he left behind.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4 of 5

True Love Way by Nancy Scrofano

Nancy Scrofano offers a fun and entertaining read about a quirky heroine who is determined to rekindle the sparks with an old flame in True Love Way.

I am a fan of Nancy's work as a blogger and reviewer, so I was especially delighted to find myself a fan of her fiction as well.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4 of 5

The Not So Secret Emails of Coco Pinchard by Robert Bryndza
A middle-aged woman's life undergoes significant transformation, and she logs it all with emails, in Robert Bryndza's The Not So Secret Emails of Coco Pinchard.
Coco's story made for a quick and entertaining one to read. Using emails to tell the story was a fun and modern way for a character to keep a diary of sorts. Using emails kept the story moving through a significant period of time quite quickly in a natural way. I found some of the emails a little too long and literary to be believable, but they were still written well, which more than made up for it.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 4 of 5

In Need of Therapy by Tracie Banister *** READ OF THE MONTH ***
Tracie Banister continues to be one of my favorite new authors with her latest offering, In Need of Therapy.
In Need of Therapy is a laugh out loud story about a fun and somewhat unconventional leading lady. She is sassy and independent, and I loved her from the get go.
Read the rest of the review here.
Rating 5 of 5

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