Forbidden Kisses by Annie Rains

Grace Donner and Jack Sawyer were once step-siblings but their parents divorced many years ago. Grace has come back to Blushing Bay to take care of her ailing mother, Tammy. She must get a job to support her mother but times are tough in the job market. She overhears someone interviewing a prospective office manager in a cafe and it turns out to be Jack Sawyer. She’s always had a crush on Jack and even though they haven’t seen each other in ages, those old feelings come back easily. The story revolves around Grace, Jack and the bad blood left in the Sawyer brothers’ veins for Tammy. I found the story to be bittersweet and engaging.  I enjoyed all the characters (except Tammy) to the very end. I think that Annie Rains and Blushing Bay are a welcomed addition to contemporary romance and I recommend Forbidden Kisses to all romance lovers.

Forbidden Kisses by Annie Rains will be available April 11, 2017 by Loveswept, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

Murder at an Irish Wedding by Carlene O’Connor

A famous Irish fashion model plans to have her wedding in the quaint village of Kilbane. Siobhan O’Sullivan and her siblings are hired to do the catering. Siobhan is also an amateur sleuth who loves to help the garda (Irish police force) solve crimes. The story finds the best man, Kevin, being a fellow that everyone has a problem with. He is rude, antagonistic and always drinking too much. When he is found murdered, the wedding plans are momentarily ruined and Siobhan’s boyfriend, Macdara, is a suspect even though he is part of the garda. The story has many twists and turns that are very surprising at the end. Murder at an Irish Wedding is the second book in the Irish Village Mystery series. I have not read the first book and had a feeling that many characters were introduced previously and not really developed in the second installment. I found the introduction of so many characters to be distracting and detrimental to the flow of the story. I thought the story was good but Siobhan was a bit nosy for me. She seemed to never take the advice of the police and continued to snoop and intrude. I still enjoyed the book and think that it is a nice addition to the cozy mystery genre.

Murder at an Irish Wedding by Carlene O’Connor will be available February 28, 2017 by Kensington Publishing Corp. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

Death of a Ghost by M.C. Beaton

Hamish Macbeth is a longtime police officer in Lochdubh Scotland. This cozy mystery has him investigating a complaint of a “ghostly howling ” in an old castle. Soon his investigation leads to a string of murders that his superiors seem eager to consider the killer identified and the case solved. Hamish believes otherwise and continues to dig his way into the web of deceit! I am a loyal reader and fan of M.C. Beaton, having read all her Hamish Macbeth series. This book struck me as being a bit darker than earlier stories. Instead of fun, caring characters, I felt like they all took a twist into becoming brooding, malicious ones. Even Hamish is not himself, being extra morose and pathetic. I really missed the humor of the regular Lochdubh characters and the comradery of Hamish and Jimmy Anderson. I always enjoyed jimmy before this book and now he is an unlovable lush. Officer Blair has gone from an irritating superior to a possible killer. Too much darkness in the lovable life of Hamish! I still love the series and definitely recommend this book and the Hamish MacBeth series to lovers of mystery.

Death of a Ghost (Hamish Macbeth, #32) is now available from Grand Central Publishing. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

No Other Highlander by Adrienne Basso

Move over Jamie and Claire….here comes Malcolm and Joan!
Joan has gotten out of an abusive marriage and she has a beautiful son, Callum, that is her life. She is determined that she will never marry again but her life is becoming hard since her father is about to remarry someone that she cannot live with! Malcolm McKenna is everything that you could image from a handsome, Highlander warrior! His wife died and he is left with a darling daughter that everyone thinks he overindulges. The result is one of the BEST stories that I’ve read in a while! Adrienne Basso is now on my list of authors to read! I absolutely loved the story and found it to be a cut above most “bodice rippers”! The plot was imaginative and interesting and I loved it! I highly recommend this book to lovers of historical romance and also to lovers of Outlander!

No Other Highlander by Adrienne Basso will be available February 28, 2017 by Zebra Books, an imprint of Kensington Publishing Corp. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

If Not for You by Debbie Macomber

Beth is new to Portland, a high school music teacher, going to her friends home to have a blind date with a friend of Rocco’s. Sam is a mechanic, long hair, tattoos and a beard. Both Beth and Sam realize that they are a bad match before the night is over. The night ends early with Sam and Beth getting into their cars and driving home. Little do they know that the next 15 minutes will affect their lives forever. I love to read Debbie Macomber and am so happy to be able to review this book. If Not for You has lovable and realistic characters with a plot that is sweet and engaging. I highly recommend this book to all lovers of contemporary romance.

If Not for You by Debbie Macomber will be available March 21, 2017 by Ballantine Books, an imprint of Random House Publishing Group. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

The Devil’s Country by Harry Hunsicker

Arlo Baines is an ex-Texas Ranger . He’s on a one-way bus ride away from the horror and pain of the death of his wife and children. He decides to stop in a small West Texas town and runs into a women with her two children pleading for help to get away from the men who are trying to kill them. Things happen and Arlo is drawn into a massive web of violence and murder. The whole town seems to be in on it, but no one’s talking. It seems like he is the only one who cares about finding out the truth. Harry Hunsicker is a master of words. Reading his prose is a twist of hard-core noir, smooth and sleek like a Phillip Marlowe of the West! His short, terse dialogue recalls Raymond Chandler. Arlo is edgy and tough, ready for anything. I loved it! Recommended for any mystery lovers.

The Devil’s Country by Harry Hunsicker will be available April 11, 2017 by Thomas and Mercer, an imprint of Amazon. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella

Cat/Katie is living her dream! She’s living in London, working for a branding agency and has the most handsome boss ever. Her supervisor, Demeter, is slick, elegant and totally unaware of her and her work. Cat has moved away from her father and stepmother in the country and she is determined to make it big in the city but things become complicated and her life is turned upside down. Reading a Sophie Kinsella novel makes you feel like you’re having a drink with a good friend, gossiping and laughing together in your own little world. I highly recommend this funny, engaging story that take you to the UK for a great time! All you have to do is go to the station, your ticket is waiting for you!

My No So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella is now available from Dial Press, an imprint of Random House Publishers. An egalley of this book was made available by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.