Reunited with the P.I. by Anna J. Stewart


Reunited with the P.I. by Anna J. Stewart
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: Suspense/Mystery, Contemporary
Length: Full Length (364 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

In this Honor Bound romance, a perilous change of heart looms for two former lovers…

Exactly why should P.I. Vince Sutton take his ex-wife’s case? Because she, assistant district attorney Simone Armstrong, put his brother in jail? Because the ambitious spitfire still drives him crazy? No, he’ll take it because -The Avenging Angel- makes him a deal he can’t refuse. Sparks fly when Vince works all-too-closely with Simone to locate her missing key witness…but in the process, they are drawn into a cold case. As much as he tries, Vince can’t deny that he’s never gotten over beautiful Simone, but can he admit his feelings to her–and himself? And can he save her from the danger that’s heading their way?

My first review that I ever wrote for LASR was More Than a Lawman which was the first book in Anna J. Stewart’s HONOR BOUND ministries. I can’t believe I was the fortunate reviewer who was picked to read the next book in the series, Reunited with the P.I..

More Than a Lawman ended with one case solved and one unresolved. The unresolved one continues to be threaded through out Reunited with the P.I. along with a new case. This new case gets resolved but leaves the unresolved still unresolved, thus the hook to read the third book in the series. You can read Reunited with the P.I. without reading the first book in the series. Anna did a nice job reviewing the past for the new reader and previous ones who might have forgotten some details, like me. However, it was nice to read both books in the series because it’s always nice to get reacquainted with old friends.

Aden, Simone and Allie are three best friends that share a childhood trauma that unites them in an unbreakable bond of friendship that has lasted into their adult lives. More Than a Lawman was Aden’s story. Reunited with the P.I.is Simone’s story. Simone is a strong leading heroine who rivals Vince, the hero, in leading capabilities. Together, Simone and Vince make a spicy suspense/mystery romance. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the leading man and leading lady being ex-wife/husband but the author made it work in a way that it was not only believable but unforgettable.

Anna J. Stewart definitely knows how to write a book that grabs the reader’s attention. I could not put the book down. Once again she wrote an unpredictable complex plot that is filled with twists and unexpected surprises. The suspense made me feel stressed out but I loved every minute since I knew there was a plan. Even if that plan didn’t work, I knew Simone and Vince would come up with another plan, sometimes with the help of their friends. I never gave up faith.

I really hope I get to read the third book in the series that is coming out in October 2017. I can’t wait to finally solve the mystery that has been threaded throughout the first two books. I typically don’t read series because I hate waiting for the next book. However, this series is the exception to my rule. I wholeheartedly recommend this book and the HONOR BOUND series.

Red Curtains by Leanna Sain


Red Curtains by Leanna Sain
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (338 pgs)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

Cleo Davis must find a model for her senior art project or she won’t graduate. When she discovers Lily Telfair-Gordon, she gets more than just an eccentric old woman who spouts famous quotes, talks to ghosts, and wears a weird hat. Lily has unwittingly stumbled upon a counterfeiting ring, and Cleo gets dragged right into the middle of it.

Jonas Holmes, an investigative reporter for the local paper, is asking the question: why do bodies of homeless men keep showing up in the river? But the homeless are scared and won’t talk to him. When he finds Cleo and Lily, he thinks his problems are solved; he doesn’t realize that they’re just beginning.

While romance blossoms between Cleo and Jonas, they work together to see how the two things are connected, but will they find out before it’s too late?

Just before the first chapter begins there is a note from the author that says “I alternate points of view between Cleo, Jonas, and Lily. Each chapter will tell you from whose eyes we’re viewing the story.”

I want to thank Ms. Sain for warning me that she’d alternate points of view between the main characters. I’ve never read a book written like that and I think that I would have been out of my element if I didn’t have that warning. I know I would not have enjoyed the book as much as I did. It took me a few chapters to get into the swing of it. It was an amazing ride once I figured out how to switch gears. It was really nifty to see different perspectives from the main characters especially when they were all involved in the suspense/mystery. It was like viewing a scene from three different angles. It’s hard to describe therefore I really suggest this book needs to be put on the must read list.

Why else should this book be on a must read list? You mean, besides for being a well written, unique and totally captivating plot? Well, it should be on a must read list for the love of the characters. They were well developed and unforgettable. Lily Telfair-Gordon, Jonas Holmes and Cleo – the three of them together make for a positively entertaining story. Cleo is the heroine of the story and not your typical heroine. In fact in the author’s note she explains her type of heroine and I quote, “I create main characters who are strong, creative, successful Southern women—GRITS, if you will. No, they’re not perfect, but they grow and overcome some pretty big obstacles, coming out stronger and more confident at the end.” That sums it up better than I ever could which is why I had no choice but to quote the author’s note again. I loved Cleo and found her relatable because many people experience shyness at one time or another. I loved how she overcame her shyness with the help of Lily. Lily was an amazing character as well. I especially enjoyed her famous quotes that were threaded throughout the novel. Jonas was the hero and while this was more than a romance story with all the suspense/mystery, there definitely was still the thread of a romance between Cleo and Jonas. It was sweet and blossomed slowly into a beautiful enduring relationship. Their romance could be considered most realistic and win a “most genuine couple” award. I couldn’t help but fall in love with Jonas right along with Cleo.

The synopsis explains there is the suspense/mystery of the counterfeiting ring and bodies of homeless men showing up in the river. I was on the edge of my seat. Talk about plot twists that were unpredictable. I don’t dare speak of it for fear of giving a spoiler.

I also wanted to mention the setting was in Savannah, Georgia. The author described it in a way that now I totally want to go there on vacation. I love cities with history such as St. Augustine, FL which I have visited. Unfortunately, homelessness is an issue in many big cities such as it is in Savannah Georgia and this novel brings the issue front and center but not in my face to the point that it detracted from the story. I was made aware of the issue through the character, Lily. I need to reference the authors note, again, because I think it’s important to tell future readers that the author stated that a portion of the proceeds from the sales of this book will go to the Stand Down program that was mentioned in the story to help the homeless in Savannah, Georgia.

In conclusion, Red Curtains was a wonderful book. It was well worth my time and I actually feel honored that I got to read this book. I don’t recall ever feeling that way about a book but this one touched my heart. I appreciate the time the author took to write a memorable novel for me to read that I won’t soon forget. Thank you. I encourage others to pick up this book and hopefully they’ll be as touched and as entertained as I was with this thrilling suspense/mystery romance.

In Mistletoe by Tammy L. Bailey


In Mistletoe by Tammy L. Bailey
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (290 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

Voted BoM by LASR Readers 2013 copy

At twenty-five, Grace Evans is steadily picking up the pieces of everyone else’s life. So, when her younger sister decides to turn into a runaway bride just four weeks before the wedding, Grace, drops everything to chase after her and bring her back home. Only, when the trail leads to Mistletoe, Washington, she finds herself at the mercy of the town’s most handsome and emotionally unavailable bachelor.

Ex-Army officer, Ayden McCabe, has three creeds in life: never make the first move, never fall in love, and never take anyone to Mistletoe’s Christmas Dance. Wanting nothing more than to keep his matchmaking sister from meddling in his personal life, he agrees to help Grace if she agrees to play his girlfriend. Too brunette and meek for his taste, Ayden believes Grace can’t tempt him enough to break any of his creeds. He could not be more wrong.

In Mistletoe captured my heart from the first page. Has this book been made into a Hallmark Christmas movie yet? I won’t be surprised to find out if it has or if it is going to be made into one eventually. I’m ready to celebrate the Christmas season. Too bad it’s the middle of July. This book really put me in the mood to walk under some mistletoe. LOL

I found the writing style made a well written piece of work that flowed effortlessly. At first I thought the plot wasn’t original as I’ve read several “agree to play his girlfriend” stories but this one had its own unique twist to that age old plot thread which was a surprising and pleasantly entertaining read.

Being careful not to give a spoiler, I need to recap the synopsis when it says that Grace is searching for her sister and the trail leads her to Mistletoe and to the town’s most handsome and emotionally unavailable bachelor. Ayden agrees to help Grace find her sister if she helps him to get his sister to stop meddling in his personal life. I had an issue with the fact that Grace gets so distracted by Ayden that she feels guilty for neglecting to find her sister which is the entire reason that she’s in Mistletoe. All I can say is that I’m glad I was able to look beyond that flaw because it paid off. There is much more to this story than meets the eye.

Grace has several layers to her character. Some layers were annoying but her history justifies those annoyances and I was able to look past them. Same goes for Ayden though his annoying qualities were different than hers and for different reasons. Ayden and Grace were a believable couple because his strengths were her weaknesses. Therefore, as the saying goes, opposites attract. I could feel the tension and chemistry as if I was the character myself.

Having said, I found the hero and heroine to be a bit annoying and that had me finding them completely relatable. They had me cracking up several times with their witty humor. The scene where he finds the particular book that she was reading and the location she had bookmarked had me crying with tears. My husband and I had that exact scene in real life. Hilarious!

I was pleased with the ending of the book. I loved how Grace’s mom was redeemed and Ayden’s parents ended on a positive note. This book was like a Vidalia onion, which by the way is one of my favorite onions. You know, sweet with many layers but still having the ability to make you cry while making everything taste better. This book gave me that feel good feeling on many levels and I’d recommend others to read In Mistletoe without any reservations.

In Pursuit of Paradise by Kate Randle


In Pursuit of Paradise by Kate Randle
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (186 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rate: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

Ship captain Nicholas Becket knows he needs to change his playboy ways. And when he discovers beautiful divorcee Lily Kingston at a job fair for his cruise line, he thinks he has found someone who can reform him. Lily is looking for a change of her own but she isn’t prepared for Nick and all of his baggage. Not to mention her own scars from the recent past. Although she is fiercely attracted to the handsome and dashing millionaire, an unexpected event threatens to tear them apart forever. Can this pair of lost souls overcome the stormy waters of life’s ups and downs in order to find their true paradise?

I’ve been waiting my whole adult life to read a romance book whose setting was on a cruise ship. Finally, I found one and it was amazingly accurate. The writing style was excellent. I could visualize the ship and it felt like I was there. It’s been six months since my last cruise and now I want to go on another one to find my own man just like the hero, Nicholas Becket. I refuse to accept that a man like the character Nicholas Becket doesn’t exist somewhere and I need him to come take me away.

Nicholas Becket is a blonde haired, blue eyed, physically fit, humble millionaire. He also just happens to be the ship’s captain. I love a man in uniform and Nicholas Becket was described as a fine looking gentleman. Did I mention he was the captain of a cruise ship?

Lily was looking for a change in her life and she deserved some happiness after what she’s gone through. I really liked Lily and I liked her more when she was with Nicholas. They brought out the good in each other. I respected that she was a hard worker and not interested in Nicholas’s money or what he could do for her. Lily had pride and self-respect, qualities I admire in a heroine. I was envious of all her good fortune. Perhaps she could have been a bit more hard to get but let’s be real, we’re talking about Nicholas. It’s easy to judge someone when we’re not in their shoes. I let that quality flaw in Lilly slide since we’re talking about my ideal book boyfriend.

Honestly, the plot was fairly predictable but I didn’t care. I thoroughly enjoyed the blossoming romance between Lily and Nicholas. I genuinely was concerned when the unexpected event happened that almost tore them apart. You’ll have to read for yourself to find out what that event was and how they found their way to their happily ever after.

I definitely have no qualms about recommending this book. It’s a perfect, quick read – all the better if you’re going on a cruise.

Christmas 911 by Lori Leger


Christmas 911 by Lori Leger
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Length: Full Length (270 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

Corinne Ritter’s life changes drastically after she loses her husband twice in the same night. Several months later, the Texas native is en route to a family gathering early on Christmas Eve when an emergency shopping trip lands her in the middle of a robbery turned hostage situation. As circumstances deteriorate, she receives a shred of hope in the faceless presence of the 911 dispatcher she only “knows” by the soothing sound of his voice.

Luke Oliver is counting down to the end of his dispatch shift, anxious to begin his chillaxing tropical vacation. When a frantic caller asks for him, he has no idea it’s the faceless Cori he’s assisted on two prior occasions. He remains with her throughout the crisis, becoming her calming influence throughout the storm.

But will Luke be able to walk away when the time comes, or will this single 911 call change his life forever?

“911…What’s your emergency?” “Oh, I’m sorry. I just read a smoking hot romance book and I think I’m on fire.” I’m totally, burning for the hero, Luke Oliver. Joking aside, I’ve had to call 911 a few times in my life and I’ve never had an operator that sounded sexy. My life is so unfair. LOL!

I almost didn’t pick this book to read when I read the synopsis and it stated, “Corinne Ritter’s life changes drastically after she loses her husband twice in the same night.” It just didn’t make sense to me but after I read the story it totally makes sense. In fact, it’s the beginning of an ingenious plot. I’m not sure how realistic it is but anything is possible, I found Christmas 911 to be one hundred percent entertaining.

As I reflected on the heroine, Cori, I experienced many emotions. There are many thoughts I’d like to share but I can’t without spoiling the numerous plot twists. It’s safe to say that I was happy for Cori, sad for her, scared for her, worried for her and even laughed with her. She was by far one of the most relatable heroines that I’ve read in a long time.

Luke was calm, stable and had unwavering strength when necessary. He was very sensitive and attentive to Cori’s needs which I found endearing. If I was going through a crisis I’d like to have Luke by my side. I also enjoyed Luke and Cori’s relationship because together they were quick-witted and quite funny. It was easy to see where Luke and Cori got their sense of humor. Both of their families were comical.

The synopsis tells you that Cori stops for a last minute shopping trip on Christmas Eve that lands her in the middle of a robbery turned hostage situation. That single event was a pivotal moment that had me on the edge of my seat. It was a riveting storyline that added suspense throughout the plot.

There are a few things I’d like to mention that earned my respect towards the author. I loved how she addressed the importance of family, camaraderie among police officers/military and the support of breast feeding. I especially respected the argument in the elevator regarding the “education person.”

I can’t say this book was predictable. I did not see that ending coming at all. Wow! I’m feeling frustrated that I can’t speak about it. It was a Wow! ending. A fishing enthusiast will love it way more than I did. 🙂

This was a very good book. I’m glad that I was the one that got to review it. This book would make a great Christmas present for my friends. I definitely recommend this book for those looking for a unique heartwarming love story and/or a reader that believes in true love and that anything is possible.

Last Chance Cowboys: The Outlaw by Anna Schmidt


Last Chance Cowboys: The Outlaw by Anna Schmidt
Where the Trail Ends Book 3
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (322 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

Amanda Porterfield longs to experience real adventure. So when she’s offered a position in bustling Tucson, she leaps at the chance despite unknown dangers―dangers like the mysterious Seth Grover.

As an undercover detective working to stop a gang of outlaws, Seth can’t afford the distractions a woman like Amanda inspires. Yet when the fiercely intelligent beauty is thrust into the middle of a heist gone wrong, Seth will fight for a future that may never be theirs…even if it means risking everything he holds dear.

The Outlaw is an entertaining novel that was filled with exciting adventure; the kind of adventure that Amanda Portefield longed for to escape the monotony of her days. The writing style made it easy for me to be sucked into the author’s imaginary world filled with relatable characters and unpredictable plot threads. I thoroughly enjoyed being captivated from the start of the book all the way to the end. The pace was consistent and thrilling which kept me continuously turning the pages.

Amanda Portefield was a strong willed, spirited leading lady who had the misfortune to find herself in a few sticky situations. Some of those situations made me laugh while others made me grimace. It was to Amanda’s great fortune that the hero, Seth, possessed the uncanny ability to be nearby to rescue her, most of the time. Seth was greatly distracted by her intelligence and beauty and she couldn’t hide her interest in his mysterious persona. I mean, seriously, who could resist an undercover detective working to stop a gang of outlaws. I can’t deny that I found Seth to be more than enticing for me. I could feel the romantic tension when they were together.

While this is the third book in a series it can be read on its own. The fact that the plot threads were all tied up with a happily ever after at the end of this book made The Outlaw the ideal romance book for me. I would strongly encourage my family and friends to read this delightful, engaging and well written love story.

Silent Justice by Kallie Lane


Silent Justice by Kallie Lane
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (172 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

When Rena O’Mally is kidnapped by a violent underworld kingpin, she enters a world where her only means of escape is in her sleep. She knows her chances of survival and returning to the man she has fallen for are slim to none.

Blue Falcone, commanding officer of an elite taskforce, races against time to find her. Taken on his watch, Rena means more to him than a woman in jeopardy should, and it scares him senseless. Worse than that, when she manages to escape, her enemy keeps coming after her.

Blue wants her in protective custody and out of harm’s way, but Rena has other ideas. She plans to bait the trap to catch this madman. As Rena’s life spins out of control, she and Blue face each challenge together. Will love give them the strength to defy the odds, or will they lose each other in the fray?

For a story that is only one hundred and seventy two pages it sure did pack a punch. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time flipping pages. If my fingernails weren’t cut short I probably would have chewed them from all the never ending suspense. If you’re looking for a quick romance story filled with action then this will meet your needs.

Rena O’Mally, the heroine, was dealt an unfortunate deck of cards at life at a young age and made some choices that directed the course of her life. Caught up in a change of events that appeared out of her control she finally decides enough is enough and no longer wants to be defined by her past. I could feel the attempt of the writer to redeem Rena and make her appear as a strong leading lady. However, Rena was a delicate balance of vulnerable and strong-will qualities that, when mixed together, made her character more than tolerable but not completely admirable in my eyes. I just wished she had turned on her listening ears when she was told to listen. Her lack of listening skills was most annoying.

There could have been other ways to add to the suspense element other than the heroine needing to be constantly rescued due to her in ability to follow directions. It was borderline unrealistic. The plot was not original no matter how many twists were implemented but it was still an entertaining read.

The hero, Blue Falcone, was your stereotypical commanding officer of an elite taskforce who develops feelings for the woman he’s supposed to keep watch over. He had all the connections necessary to call in for back up to save the day no matter how many times he needed to save the day. His team members were briefly introduced but weren’t well defined characters. I developed a stronger connection to Rena’s rescued cat, Tigz.

I did feel the connection between Rena and Blue. I always fall for that damsel in distress ploy, which is why I could tolerate Rena’s inability to listen. The pickles she got herself into allowed me to enjoy feeling those swoon-worthy moments of ‘Ooh! and Ahh!” because they showcased Blue’s amazing heroism.

The violent underworld kingpin just wasn’t going give up and that plot hook kept me riveted until the end. I had to see how Blue Falcone was finally going to save the day, once and for all. Just like the synopsis alluded to, will Rena and Blue’s love for one another give them the strength to defy the odds? Or, will they lose each other in the fray? You’ll need to read the story to find out.

As much as Blue was always racing against time, I wanted the time to slow down and the book to not end. I was content with the ending and pleased with the closure that was provided. I didn’t consider this book a waste of my time and would recommend it to others. This is another one of those books for which I didn’t need my morning coffee to wake up. 🙂

A Kiss Under the Christmas Lights by Peggy Jaeger


A Kiss Under the Christmas Lights by Peggy Jaeger
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Length: Short Story (138 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

With Christmas just a few weeks away, Gia San Valentino, the baby in her large, loud, and loving Italian family, yearns for a life and home of her own with a husband and bambini she can love and spoil. The single scene doesn’t interest her, and the men her well-meaning family introduce her to aren’t exactly the happily-ever-after kind.

Tim Santini believes he’s finally found the woman for him, but Gia will take some convincing she’s that girl. A misunderstanding has her thinking he’s something he’s not.

Can a kiss stolen under the Christmas lights persuade her to spend the rest of her life with him?

When I started reading A Kiss under the Christmas Lights, the first thing that hit me immediately was the writing style. It is important to stress that if you are like me and dislike books that are written in first person point of view, please give this book a chance like I did. I admit that when I started reading the first page I was like, “Oh, no!”, and was about to decline the chance to read it. But, with the first Italian lesson on page two? I was drawn so completely into the story I forgot I was reading a first person point of view. That itself is a testimony to the writing style. I have to give praise where praise is due. I was shocked that I enjoyed the entire book considering my pet peeve over first person romance books. Well done Peggy Jaeger! I enjoyed how Ms. Jaeger incorporated Italian lessons throughout the story. I’m not Italian but I have friends that are and the author hit the nail on the head with how she described this Italian family in the book.

As for the plot, again I was thrown for a loop. Maybe I should have mentioned the plot first in the initial paragraph. I don’t know which I’m more excited about, the writing style or the plot. It was clever and original. The misunderstanding that is mentioned in the synopsis was so effective, I simply could not put the book down. It was worth every minute I spent reading. A Kiss under the Christmas Lights was a quick read and I just might read it a second time because I wasn’t fully prepared for what I was about to experience. It was unpredictable and yet I’m surprised I didn’t figure it out sooner than I did. Regardless, when I did figure it out, the revelation was priceless – absolutely the best misunderstanding one could invent. I’m dying to blurt it out but that wouldn’t be fun or fair to future readers.

The heroine, Gia, and the hero, Tim, are perfect for each other. They are an example of fate. They were destined to meet each other and fall in love. I loved where and how they met and I enjoyed how their story evolved especially that misunderstanding. I can’t wipe the smile off my face. The ending was so sweet my teeth ached. I was left feeling a happy book glow.

If it isn’t obvious by what I’ve already written then you’re missing the point. This is a must read, especially if you’re Italian and even if you’re not. I hope you’ll laugh as much as I did. I absolutely would be proud to recommend this book. I have learned a valuable lesson for the future. I won’t be so negative about books written in first person POV. A Kiss under the Christmas Lights was a sheer delight!

The Wedding by Edith Layton


The Wedding by Edith Layton
Publisher: Untreed Reads
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (207 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

Her father’s ill-fated ventures land Dulcie Dawn Blessing in London’s notorious debtor’s prison. In a desperate scheme to win her freedom, she consents to marry a stranger…for a day. Down on his luck but ever a gentleman, Crispin West agrees to oblige a lady in need, even if it means playing the groom in a mock wedding. But flustered by the unexpected loveliness of his “bride,” Crispin signs the marriage certificate with his true name, Viscount West of Darnley Hall.

Then Crispin’s fortunes are miraculously recovered, allowing him to proceed with his plan to marry Society’s darling, Lady Charlotte Barrington. But the very night he is to ask for her hand, Dulcie appears at his doorstep. Their marriage certificate, legally binding with Crispin’s signature, has disappeared and may have already fallen into the hands of rogues intent on mischief—or worse.

I enjoy reading historical romances and I found The Wedding to be an enjoyable relaxing read.

The writing style was good. The plot wasn’t original but it was still entertaining. The cast of characters were well developed and easy to follow and I didn’t get stressed because there were no sudden plot twists or urgent need to turn the pages. The story itself was enough to keep reading.

Crispin, the hero, was what every girl dreams of when they dream of falling in love; handsome, intelligent, and self-reliant.

Dulcie wasn’t my ideal heroine. She was too vulnerable, weak and cried way too many times. For those reasons I found her to be difficult to relate to and therefore I had a hard time liking her. However, I did respect Dulcie because she displayed a great sense of integrity. Near the end of the book she did finally demonstrate some back bone which helped redeem her in my eyes.

I’m very particular about all my plot threads being tied up with a pretty bow and there was one thread that I felt was left loose – Dulcie’s father. There is some speculation as to what happened to him, where he might be and why. I point to a section in the book synopsis, “Dulcie partakes in a desperate scheme to win her freedom” which refers to the mystery surrounding her father. Explaining why is a spoiler so I can’t say anything, but rest assured, Dulcie loves her father and felt it necessary to partake in that scheme. The story ends without a conclusion about her father and there was no reunion after the main conflict was resolved and it was safe to return. I know if it was my father, I’d want to find out what happened to him, especially after all that Dulcie did for him. I’m not entirely sure he even deserved her loyalty. He was never a candidate for a “father of the year “award. It’s a minor flaw but because of that and Dulcie’s proclivity to cry too much, I gave the book a 3 rating.

The relationship between Crispin and Dulcie made for a sensual romance. He found her to be refreshing and beautiful and she found him to be a gentleman. They couldn’t resist their attraction to one another despite being from two separate worlds.

Besides wanting to see how Dulcie and Crispin reached their happily ever after, the side characters such as Wrede, Willie and Charlotte just to name a few, were a large part of what kept me turning the pages until the end.

I really enjoyed the moral of the story which was how you can have all the riches in the world but without love you have nothing. I do recommend this book to those who have some unscheduled free time and are lazing around yet are in need of something romantic to read or just something to cure their boredom.This novel is a decent fix. I think a reader will be entertained for a few hours and be glad they read the book just like me. The ending was bliss.

Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove by Lauri Robinson and Kathryn Albright


Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove by Lauri Robinson and Kathryn Albright
Publisher: Harlequin Historical
Genre: Historical
Length: Full Length (288 pgs)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: Best Book
Reviewed by Mistflower

Voted BoM by LASR Readers 2013 copy

Twin sisters say “I do” in the Wild West!

SURPRISE BRIDE FOR THE COWBOY by Lauri Robinson

Mary McCary never wanted to be a mail-order bride, but falling off the Oak Grove train into Steve Putnam’s lap changes everything… Could he be the cowboy to tempt her down the aisle?

TAMING THE RUNAWAY BRIDE by Kathryn Albright

Running from trouble, Maggie McCary signs up to be a mail-order bride. She doesn’t intend to actually marry…until she shares one sensational kiss with Jackson Miller!

Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove was awesome! Twin sisters say “I do” in the Wild West. Mary and Maggie each have their own love story to tell in this one book. This is two books in one yet they are connected. The flawless writing style of each book was brilliantly blended for the reader as I got to read the same scene twice, but from the other twin’s perspective. I actually nanny for a family with three year old twin girls. There is something special about twins. They have a bond that can’t be explained and this book captured that.

The first book, “Surprise Bride for the Cowboy” by Lauri Robinson was my ideal romance book. I love when I suffer from a book hangover; the inability to start a new book because I’m still living in the last book’s world. That to me is the sign of a great love story.

The original plots were beautifully written and had me laughing numerous times. Immediately I felt I was hooked and transported into the book’s world and I couldn’t read the pages fast enough.

I fell in love with Steve, the hero and Mary the heroine. Gosh, they were perfect together. I enjoyed the situation in how they met. Mary was a spitfire with determination who does what needs to be done, yet demonstrated compassion and empathy towards others at the appropriate times. I loved how Steve was patient, thankful and forgiving. Of course he was gorgeous, strong and thoughtful. He didn’t possess any unlikable qualities. The perfect book boyfriend. Together their romance was sweet and irresistible. I must add that the description details of Mary’s cooking had my mouth watering. Do NOT read this book while hungry! LOL…

All the characters were well developed in both books and I was able to easily relate to them. The doctor was a plot twist in the end of the first book that just had me grinning like a goober. The author got me on that one. Well done, Lauri Robinson.

The second book was “Taming the Runaway Bride” by Kathryn Albright and was also a lot of fun to read. The entire book was the best reading experience and words won’t do justice to as why I would recommend this book to all my friends and family. I didn’t think the romance story between Steve and Mary in the first book could be matched but not only did the story between Maggie and Jackson in the second book match the first but it surpassed it. I fell in love with Jackson and Maggie and experienced another book hangover!

I could see Jackson and Steve becoming best friends and everyone living happily ever after as one big adventure-filled family. I can only imagine the stories they will have to tell their grandchildren.

I laughed so hard when Maggie entered Jackson’s workshop and, well, you just have to read it. I couldn’t stop re-reading that part because I love laughing so hard that I cry tears of joy and get a cramp in my side.

Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove was excellent! I don’t understand how two authors could write a book sharing some of the characters and yet I didn’t feel like I was reading a book written by two authors. I highly recommend this book for a pleasurable entertainment.