Today we are spotlighting Carolyn Miller’s regency romance novel – A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh (Regency Brides: Daughters of Aynsley, Book 1).International Christian Fiction Book Spotlight: A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh by Carolyn Miller
More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.
Until I Met You by Tari Faris — Libby Kingsley dreams of a new life and a new library for the charming small town of Heritage, MI. Things get complicated when her big ideas threaten Austin Williams’ blueprints and his plan to leave town unattached. (Contemporary Romance from Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group)
A Love Redeemed by Lisa Jordan — They agreed to help each other out. No one mentioned falling in love. Back home after losing her job, Isabella Bradley plans to stay only long enough to save her father’s diner, but she can’t do it alone. Her childhood friend Tucker Holland has the perfect solution—he will renovate the diner if she’ll be a nanny for his twins. But as Isabella and Tucker reconnect, their arrangement begins to feel a lot less temporary… (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])
The Edge of Belonging by Amanda Cox — When Ivy Rose returns to her hometown to oversee an estate sale, she soon discovers that her grandmother left behind more than trinkets and photo frames–she provided a path to the truth behind Ivy’s adoption. Shocked, Ivy seeks clues to her past, but a key piece to the mystery is missing. Twenty-four years earlier, Harvey James finds an abandoned newborn who gives him a sense of human connection for the first time in his life. His desire to care for the baby runs up against the stark fact that he is homeless. When he becomes entwined with two people seeking to help him find his way, Harvey knows he must keep the baby a secret or risk losing the only person he’s ever loved. In this dual-time story from debut novelist Amanda Cox, the truth–both the search for it and the desire to keep it from others–takes center stage as Ivy and Harvey grapple with love, loss, and letting go. (Contemporary from Revell [Baker])
Finding Wings by Deborah Raney — Taking care of her family is a blessing, but Britt thought there would be more to life–like falling in love . . . Being the youngest of three sisters isn’t always easy for Britt Chandler, especially when her older sisters have successful lives and hers is still on hold. She put everything aside to care for her dying mother, but now their mother is gone. Just as her life finally has a chance to blossom, her sister is ordered on bed rest during a difficult pregnancy, and it looks like God is again calling Britt to be a family caregiver–and nothing more. Rafe Stuart is unable to forgive himself for a childhood mistake that had grave repercussions. And no matter how many lives he saves now as a first responder, he can’t ever seem to do enough penance to free his soul from that decades-old tragedy. There definitely isn’t room in his wounded heart for love; it’s much too dangerous. When these two struggling souls encounter each other, sparks fly. But they’re both scared the fire that might result could destroy them–and the others around them. How can they begin to trust God to have the best for them and real purpose for their lives beyond what they’ve dreamed . . . or feared? (Contemporary from Kregel Publications)
A Christmas Tale for Little Women by Linda Brooks Davis — Broadview is attired for Christmas. Adelaide Fitzgerald must provide two girls a Christmas like no other. Has she thought of everything? Has she accomplished enough? What would top off this Christmas in an extraordinary way? Addie’s answer lies just the other side of Rock Creek. What will it take for her to recognize it as the Christmas topper she’s been seeking? (Historical, Independently Published)
The Librarian of Boone’s Hollow by Kim Vogel Sawyer — During the Great Depression, city-dweller Addie Cowherd dreams of becoming a novelist and offering readers the escape that books had given her during her tragic childhood. When her father loses his job, she is forced to take the only employment she can find—delivering books on horseback to poor coal-mining families in the hills of Kentucky. But turning a new page will be nearly impossible in Boone’s Hollow, where residents are steeped in superstitions and deeply suspicious of outsiders. Even local Emmett Tharp feels the sting of rejection after returning to the tiny mountain hamlet as the first in his family to graduate college. And as the crippled economy leaves many men jobless, he fears his degree won’t be worth much in a place where most men either work the coal mine or run moonshine. As Addie also struggles to find her place, she’ll unearth the truth about a decades-old rivalry. But when someone sets out to sabotage the town’s library program, will the culprit chase Addie away or straight into the arms of the only person who can help her put a broken community back together? (Historical from Waterbrook/Multnomah [Random House])
Under the Tulip Tree by Michelle Shocklee — Sixteen-year-old Lorena Leland’s dreams of a rich and fulfilling life as a writer are dashed when the stock market crashes in 1929. Seven years into the Great Depression, Rena’s banker father has retreated into the bottle, her sister is married to a lazy charlatan and gambler, and Rena is an unemployed newspaper reporter. Eager for any writing job, Rena accepts a position interviewing former slaves for the Federal Writers’ Project. There, she meets Frankie Washington, a 101-year-old woman whose honest yet tragic past captivates Rena. As Frankie recounts her life as a slave, Rena is horrified to learn of all the older woman has endured—especially because Rena’s ancestors owned slaves. While Frankie’s story challenges Rena’s preconceptions about slavery, it also connects the two women whose lives are otherwise separated by age, race, and circumstances. But will this bond of respect, admiration, and friendship be broken by a revelation neither woman sees coming? (Historical from Tyndale House)
The Haunting at Bonaventure Circus by Jaime Jo Wright — In 1928, the Bonaventure Circus has become a refuge for many, but Pippa Ripley was rejected from its inner circle as a baby and is no longer content to leave the reason for that rejection unquestioned. When she receives mysterious messages from someone called the “Watchman,” she is determined to find him and the connection to her birth. As Pippa’s search leads her to a man seeking justice for his murdered sister and evidence that a serial killer has been haunting the circus train, she must decide if uncovering her roots is worth putting herself directly in the path of the killer. Decades later, an old circus train depot’s future hangs in the balance–it will either be torn down or preserved for historical importance, and its fate rests on Realtor Chandler Faulk’s shoulders. As she dives deep into the depot’s history, she’s also balancing a newly diagnosed disease and the pressures of single motherhood. When she discovers clues to unsolved murders of the past, Chandler is pulled into a story far darker and more haunting than even an abandoned train depot could portend. (Historical from Bethany House [Baker])
Enduring Dreams by Sandra Ardoin — Claire Kingsley once dared to assert herself into the male world of 1890s architecture. It cost her husband both his life and an heir. Now fear controls her choices and her dreams. When offered a chance to create another design, she fights against the pull, afraid of further disaster. But disturbing news ignites a fierce loyalty to her past love and a powerful attraction to a new one—an attraction she resists…for his sake. Mark Gregory’s first architectural project in town comes with the proviso that he works with a female. He balks, even though Claire stirs his heart like no other woman. Yet, with a loan payment looming, risking his business on someone of unknown talent invites failure, a word he’s struck from his vocabulary. When bigotry and Claire’s fears threaten an important commission, will she summon the courage to help Mark succeed, or will she destroy another man’s dream? (Historical Romance from Corner Room Books)
Light in the Mountain Sky by Misty M. Beller — Determined to prove her worth, Meksem fiercely fought to earn her place among the warriors in her Nez Perce camp. When her half-sister is captured by an enemy tribe, she refuses to trust the rescue to anyone else. But her new friends insist on joining her mission, and she battles between relief and frustration at their presence. Especially the white man who peers at her as if he can see through the face of the warrior she struggles so hard to maintain. Spaniard Adam Vargas thrives on adventure wherever his travels take him. He’s fallen in love with this Rocky Mountain wilderness, as well as the spotted horses the Nez Perce tribe raise. His fascination with this Indian maiden-turned-warrior catches him off guard though, including the way she seems to be fighting for more than her sister’s safe return. The journey proves more perilous than any of the group expects, and the secret Meksem hides becomes impossible to conceal. If they live through this mission, the life they knew will never be the same again. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)
A Joyful Christmas by Cynthia Hickey, Liz Johnson, Vickie McDonough, Liz Tolsma, Carrie Turansky, and Erica Vetsch — A Christmas Collection to Warm the Heart Grab a warm cup of tea and watch as romance is kindled and joy is restored to broken lives during six bygone era Christmas celebrations. (Historical from Barbour Publishing)
Love’s Pure Light by Susanne Dietze, Shannon McNear, Deborah Raney, and Janine Rosche — Be transported to unique time periods as you follow a treasured family nativity set through four generations of the Shepherd family. (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)
Palmer Girl by Dawn Klinge — When insurance tycoon, Cornelius Nordeman, is recruited to work for the Exposition Corporation, the New Yorker brings his family to live at the Palmer House Hotel, far away from any reminders of a recent tragedy. He’s hopeful this move will offer respite from his family’s grief. Elizabeth Nordeman, his daughter, has something to prove, which leads her to seek work as a florist at Marshall Field’s, Chicago’s finest department store. John Lewis knows something is different and intriguing about the new florist he hired. When his boss, Marshall Field, informs him that Elizabeth is the Nordeman heiress, his job suddenly becomes more complicated–especially when he finds himself falling for her. On the eve of the Columbian Exposition of 1893, Chicago prepares to prove that it’s a first-class city, and the brightest minds from around the country will plan the most spectacular fair the world has seen. The World’s Fair will bring change and innovation into a society bound tightly by class and tradition. Elizabeth’s heart longs to push against those boundaries, so what’s holding her back? (Historical Romance, Independently Published)
Love at First Flight by Linda Shenton Matchett — Evelyn Reid would rather fly than do anything else, so when war engulfs the U.S., she joins the Women’s Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron. One of the program’s top pilots, she is tapped for pursuit plane training…the dream of a lifetime until she discovers the instructor is her ex-fiancé, Jasper MacPherson. Collecting enough points to rotate stateside, fighter pilot Jasper MacPherson is assigned to teach the WAFS how to fly the army way. Bad enough to be training women, but things take a turn for the worse when his former fiancée shows up as one of his students. (Historical Romance from Shortwave Press)
The Sleuth’s Surprise by Kimberly Rose Johnson — Mary Daley has been the sheriff of Tipton County for more than two decades, but someone wants her job. When it seems circumstances can’t get more complicated, a murder happens on her watch. Had she been the intended victim? Deputy Chief Lyle Griffin only wants Mary to be happy, but when he asks her if she’d consider retiring, it sets off a string of events and emotions that muddy their friendship. Nancy Daley-Malone can’t believe anyone would run for sheriff against her mom. She is onboard to help run the best campaign Tipton County has ever seen until the sheriff’s opponent is murdered and Nancy’s husband joins the race. On top of that, it appears someone is out to kill her mother as well. Can Nancy, along with the sheriff’s department, find the murderer before it’s too late? Will Lyle and Mary be able to admit their feelings for one another or will the status quo remain? (Mystery from Mountain Brook Ink)
Airborne by DiAnn Mills — Heather Lawrence’s long-awaited vacation to Salzburg wasn’t supposed to go like this. Mere hours into the transatlantic flight, the Houston FBI agent is awakened when passengers begin exhibiting horrific symptoms of an unknown infection. As the virus quickly spreads and dozens of passengers fall ill, Heather fears she’s witnessing an epidemic similar to ones her estranged husband studies for a living—but this airborne contagion may have been deliberately released. While Heather remains quarantined with other survivors, she works with her FBI colleagues to identify the person behind this attack. The prime suspect? Dr. Chad Lawrence, an expert in his field . . . and Heather’s husband. The Lawrences’ marriage has been on the rocks since Chad announced his career took precedence over his wife and future family and moved out. As more victims fall prey days after the initial outbreak, time’s running out to hunt down the killer, one who may be closer to the victims than anyone ever expected. (Romantic Suspense from Tyndale House)
Forsaken Island by Sharon Hinck — The people of Meriel have long believed their island world floats alone in the vast ocean universe, so they are astonished when another island drifts into view. With resources becoming scarce, Carya and Brantley quickly volunteer to search the new land for supplies. After navigating a barrier of menacing trees, the pair encounter a culture of perpetually happy people who readily share their talents and their possessions. But all is not what it seems. At the core of the island is a horror that threatens everyone, including Brantley and Carya. Freeing the villagers of the bondage they’ve chosen may cost Carya and Brantley more than they could have imagined. Even if the two succeed, they’ll have to find a way to return to Meriel quickly … or be cut off from their home forever. (Speculative from Enclave Publishing)
I’m blogging at Inspy Romance today and giving away a $10 Amazon US Gift Card.
A few weeks ago my young adult son finished reading a book by one of his favorite authors. I asked him what he thought of the book. He said it was a great story but…he was shocked to find a spelling mistake in the book!
I was intrigued by my son’s comment because I’ve enjoyed reading books by this award winning author who is an excellent writer.
[Read more via link below at Inspy Romance blog]When a spelling mistake is not a mistake… plus #Giveaway
Today we are spotlighting Cindy Williams’ Biblical fiction novel – The Silk Merchant of Sychar. Congratulations to Cindy on her book being a finalist in the Romantic Elements category of the Romance Writers of Australia Ruby Award!International Christian Fiction Book Spotlight: The Silk Merchant of Sychar by Cindy Williams
Check out the fabulous Back to School Giveaway at the Inspy Romance blog!
12 book bundles including:
5 x paperback bundles
4 x ebook bundles
2 x international paperback bundles (for readers who have a mailing address outside USA)
PLUS – an amazing GRAND PRIZE with ‘A Cozy Evening In’ themed bundle of books, tea, candles and other treats to create a fun and relaxing reading experience!
It’s time! Even though the back to school season doesn’t look like it usually does, here at InspyRomance we are still having our regularly scheduled Back to School Giveaway … [Read more via link below]Introducing the 2020 Back to School Giveaway!
She’s out of options. He doesn’t want to get involved.
Skye Hewitt thought coming to Jesus would fix all her problems. Boy was she wrong. But He has given her the strength to make some big decisions. Like the choice to leave the East Coast where she was comfortable, and head to the Southwest and the grandparents she’s never met. Maybe the change of scene will provide the solution she desperately needs.
Morgan Young came to Hope Ranch to work with horses and put his years as a police officer behind him. The influx of Hewitt grandchildren isn’t even a blip on his radar. At least until Skye shows up. Now he’s torn between seeking out and steering clear of the woman who stirs more than his curiosity.
The longer she stays, the more they’re thrown together, and both of them will have to decide if falling in love is something they’re willing to risk.
I really enjoyed reading Hope For Tomorrow and it’s my favorite book so far in Elizabeth Maddrey’s Hope Ranch series set in New Mexico. We meet Skye Hewitt when she turns up unannounced at Hope Ranch and, for the first time, sees her paternal grandparents. She’s only twenty-three and was forced to leave her job because her unknown health condition and the associated anxiety has became too much. I’ve struggled with health issues in recent years, and I could relate and empathize with Skye’s frustration in firstly not knowing what’s wrong with her, and secondly not being able to do what she wants to do because she’s not feeling well.
Life isn’t easy, and Skye’s looking for a safe place to heal and find answers. Her older brother, Cyan, is living on Hope Ranch with their grandparents. You can read more about Cyan’s romance with Maria in Book 1, Hope for Christmas (see my recommendation here).
Morgan Young is a lovable hero for a bunch of reasons. He has a maturity beyond his years from his former life as a cop where he witnessed the best and worst of human nature. His faith is strong and, prior to meeting Skye, he’d accepted his lot as a single man who loves his job working with horses. Morgan is drawn to Skye. She inspires him to leave his comfort zone and explore the possibility of a romantic relationship. I appreciated his patience and understanding of Skye and her complex family situation.
Skye’s grandparents have a strong faith, and they haven’t stopped praying for their estranged son, daughter-in-law, and their grandchildren to become believers. Skye’s father has never attempted to hide his hostility toward Christianity and his parent’s religious life choices. Skye’s father’s attitude, combined with her unconventional upbringing and family situation, has complicated Skye’s faith journey. Despite feeling distant from her parents, Skye shares a close relationship with her siblings and her twin brother, Royal.
Both Morgan and Skye have a ton of emotional baggage to overcome plus the reveal of a long held secret threatens their path to happily-ever-after. I read the second half of the book in one sitting because I had to turn the page and find out what happens next! I loved the ending and I recommend reading the books in order to fully appreciate the unfolding events in the series.
Skye’s grandparents are adorable and the other residents at Hope Ranch reminded me of why I love reading contemporary Christian romance (CCR) set in small town communities. I enjoyed rereading Hope for Christmas (Book 1) to get my head back into the series, and I’m currently reading Hope For Love (Book 3) that released a few weeks ago.
I highly recommend Hope For Tomorrow to readers who like sweet and realistic romance stories that aren’t afraid to address contemporary issues.
Read a FREE sample at Amazon.com
More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.
The Price of Dreams by Toni Shiloh — Ballet has always been my life, but one terrible moment may have destroyed everything I’ve worked so hard for—especially my title of Octavia Ricci, principal ballerina. I thought for sure my physical therapist, Dr. Noah Wright, could help me obtain my dream once more, but he wants more than I’m prepared to give. I’ve seen firsthand the trials of interracial relationships. I’m a product of one myself and promised I’d never put my hopefully-someday kids through that drama. Everyone keeps telling me to let go of other people’s expectations, but I’m just not sure I can. Besides, if my dreams of returning to ballet are futile, what hope is there in seeking unconditional love? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)
Peace in the Valley by Kelly Irvin — After a devastating wildfire sweeps through her town, one young Amish woman is shown a different way to practice her faith . . . but pursuing it could cost her everything she holds dear, including the man she loves. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)
The Plans We Made by Kathryn Cushman and Lauren Beccue — Caroline Chapman is reeling from a broken engagement. Determined to start again, she moves cross-country for her dream job of planning events in the historical mansions of Newport, Rhode Island. Just as her life is getting back on track, she gets an email that shakes her very foundations. Linda Riley’s life looks picture perfect – a wonderful husband, two great kids, involved in church and the community. Then comes the diagnosis that shatters the facade. In order to save her son’s life, she must reveal secrets that can rip everything apart. Connected by more than painful circumstances, these two women discover a sacred bond. In this beautiful story of love, loss, and the fight for life, Caroline and Linda experience the reality that things don’t always go according to The Plans We Made. (Women’s Fiction from White Glove)
In High Cotton by Ane Mulligan — While the rest of the world has been roaring through the 1920s, times are hardscrabble in rural South Georgia. Widow Maggie Parker is barely surviving while raising her young son alone. Then as banks begin to fail, her father-in-law threatens to take her son and sell off her livelihood—the grocery store her husband left her. Can five Southern women band together, using their wisdom and wiles to stop him and survive the Great Depression? (Historical from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)
The Heart of Courage by Lynne Basham Tagawa — In 1753, troubling news comes to Russell’s Ridge… Susanna Russell longs to escape her valley home. When war breaks out, she gets her wish to study in fabulous Williamsburg. But she realizes she’s lost something important along the way. Something—and someone. James Paxton is studying for the ministry. But when violence threatens the valley, his path becomes clouded. What is God’s will for his life? The answer is alarming—and impossible. Red Hawk spies white surveyors near his home, a harbinger of trouble to come. Shawnee chiefs go to Philadelphia to treat for peace, but the unthinkable happens, and Red Hawk loses all he once held dear. Then he has a strange dream. What can it mean? (Historical from Blue Rock Press)
Heart of a Warrior by Angela K. Couch — All Christina Astle wants is to reach Oregon before her baby is born, but the wagon train is attacked, and her husband killed, stranding her in a mountain labyrinth. Raised in the East, within civilization’s embrace, survival is not a skill she’s learned. Neither is evading the lone warrior dogging her trail. Disgusted by the greed and cruelty of men like his white father, Towan has turned to the simpler existence of his mother’s tribal people. He is not prepared for the fiery woman who threatens to upturn his entire life … and his heart. (Historical Romance from Prism [Pelican Book Group])
The Shopkeeper’s Widow by Izzy James — Delany Fleet, a widowed former indentured servant living in the colonial port of Norfolk, Virginia, dreams of having an estate of her own where she will never have to compromise her freedom. When the only man she ever loved shows up with a load of smuggled firearms, Delany is forced to leave her home and her livelihood to protect her family and property from Lord Dunmore’s raids and the conniving plots of a man who claims to be her friend. Now, with her destiny forever altered, Delany must find a new way to happiness. Can reconnecting with her husband’s family and a former love be the path that God has for her? (Historical Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])
Dinah’s Dilemma by Linda Shenton Matchett — Dinah Simpkins has no chance of making a good marriage. Her outlaw brothers and her father’s gambling addiction have ruined the family’s reputation. Then the Westward Home and Hearts Matrimonial Agency provides an opportunity for a fresh start. After Dinah arrives in Nebraska, she discovers her brothers played a part in the death of her prospective groom’s first wife. As a former Pinkerton detective Nathan Childs knows when someone is lying. The bride sent by the matrimonial agency may be beautiful, but she’s definitely hiding something, and he has no intention of marrying her until he uncovers the truth. But an easier solution may be to send her packing. Then his young daughter goes missing. He and Dinah must put aside their mutual hurt and mistrust to find her. (Historical Romance from Shortwave Press)
Katherine’s Arrangement by Blossom Turner — Marrying him is her only choice to save her family, but Josiah Richardson isn’t at all the man she expected. A marriage of convenience is the last thing she wants, but there doesn’t seem to be a better option for her family or herself. Meanwhile, Josiah works hard to befriend Katherine, to earn her trust and win her love. And Katherine is pleasantly surprised to find herself drawn to Josiah, until an unexpected friendship tears apart all they’ve worked for. Where once the promise of love had budded between Josiah and Katherine, now they wonder what to do with their so-called marriage. Is love strong enough to weave its healing power through two broken hearts? (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)
The Black Midnight by Kathleen Y’Barbo — Called to London by her great grandmother Queen Victoria, former Pinkerton agent Alice Anne von Wettin goes undercover to assist Scotland Yard in catching Jack the Ripper after working a similar case in Austin, Texas. (Suspenseful Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)
Accidental Target by Theresa Hall — Allison Moore can’t deny what she sees—a lifeless hand sticking out of a tarp in the back of a crashed pickup truck. Seconds later, she’s on the run with a murderer on her heels. Nowhere is safe and no one can be trusted…except police sergeant Jackson Archer. But with someone set on silencing her, can Jackson keep his promise of protection? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])
Minutes to Die by Susan Sleeman — It’s the intel every agent fears—terrorists have been smuggled into the country intent on unleashing the most deadly attack since 9/11. With the threat imminent, FBI Agent Kiley Dawson and ICE Agent Evan Bowers are charged with taking down this terrorist cell. Only problem is, Kiley blames Evan for the death of her former partner, and she can barely be in a room with him. But with millions of lives on the line, she has no choice. If it wasn’t for a bad call Evan made, Kiley’s former partner would still be alive, and Evan has to live with that guilt for the rest of his life. When he starts falling for her, the agent’s death seems an impossible obstacle—but it’s also the last thing he needs to think about. As the terrorist plot veers toward targeting Kiley’s family, the two are pushed to the breaking point in a race to save countless lives. (Romantic Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])
Can a trio of teens keep ancient evil from tipping the universe into chaos? When seventeen-year-old Amy Adams finds her father’s family and a lost twin brother on the Hopi Reservation, she stumbles into a struggle between shamans and witches that spans a thousand years. After Mahu is attacked and a Conquistador’s journal stolen, Amy and her new friend Diego set out on a dangerous quest to find and perform the ceremony that can stop ancient evil from entering our world. But Amy and Diego are not alone as they race against time measured by a waxing moon. Kokopelli’s song, the haunting notes or a red cedar flute guide them along the migration route sacred to pueblo peoples: West to Old Oraibi, South to El Morro, East to Cochiti Pueblo, North to Chimney Rock, and last to the Center—and the final confrontation—in Chaco Canyon. (Speculative from Scrivenings Press)
Rose in the Desert by K.M. Daughters — Anna Babic Robbins, dubbed “The Rose Of The Adriatic” by pilgrims to her village, leaves her home bound for America. She is to deliver secrets concerning the fate of the world to a Chicago priest who will shepherd mankind to prepare to hear God speak. Four women travel to Las Vegas, and while there, snow begins to fall during triple digit heat. They soon learn that the non-accumulating snowfall is a worldwide phenomenon—a universal sign from God preceding the gift of a permanent sign inexplicable by earthly standards. With the culmination of these miraculous events, all their paths intersect, and God will reveal His plans to each soul on earth. Will mankind listen? (Speculative from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])
I, Holiday Brown, have it all. A platinum record. Multi-million dollar home in Manhattan that I share with my two best friends. Life is looking fantastic until my roommate’s brother decides to bunk in our guestroom while his house gets renovated.
W. Emmett Bell has always been the bane of my existence. He’s annoying, stubborn, a know it all, and just might be the most gorgeous man I’ve ever laid eyes on. But I refuse to fall for him. But when his sister’s threatened by a stalker, dynamics change. His unwavering faith isn’t quite as self-righteous as I’d always thought, and maybe he has a good side I’ve overlooked all these years.
Or maybe it’s all too much trouble.
The Trouble With Love is the first book in the Christian Chick Lit series: Faith & Fortune.
I enjoyed reading The Trouble With Love and armchair travelling to summer in New York City. Holiday is not your stereotypical popstar and song writer who parties hard and lives an over-the-top celebrity lifestyle. When she’s not touring, she lives in a lovely townhouse in Manhattan’s Upper East Side with her two long time best friends who also have successful careers. Astoria is a supermodel and Octavia is a ballerina.
Astoria’s brother, Emmett, is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who stays with the girls in their guest room while he’s waiting to move back into his apartment. He’s concerned about his sister’s safety because she has acquired a stalker who’s sending her bizarre and scary gifts. Emmett’s parents hire bodyguards to protect the girls and travel with them. The suspense element in the story is like an undercurrent in the surf. The rip is there, but it doesn’t overpower the developing romance between Holiday and Emmett.
Holiday and Emmett have a fun love-hate relationship going back to their teen years. She crushed on him in high school, and never forgot his legalistic view of Christianity that turned her off both faith and him. At the start of the story Holiday describes her feelings for Emmett.
The feelings he evoked in me were akin to childbirth without the mitigating blessing of a bundle of joy.The Trouble With Love by Toni Shiloh
Ouch. What did Emmett do to deserve that thought? He’s sweet and patient with Holiday, and his feelings for her run deep. Holiday is a complex character with emotional baggage from her difficult relationship with her famous father. I loved her journey to faith in the story. Holiday believes she’s a good person. Despite having everything the world says should make her happy, deep down she knows it’s not enough, and knows there’s something missing in her life. She’s also not looking for love, and sums up her sentiment in the following words.
The trouble with love was it always smacked you in the face when you least expected it. Metaphorically speaking, of course, because I wasn’t in love.The Trouble With Love by Toni Shiloh
In the Chick Lit style, the story is written in first person from Holiday’s viewpoint. My reading preference for contemporary romance is third person dual viewpoint for a couple of reasons. I have to really love a character and enjoy being in their head for first person to work for me, and I often become frustrated by not knowing what’s going on in the hero’s head. It takes a talented author with a strong voice to carry me along for the ride in a first person single viewpoint story, and Toni Shiloh delivers a fabulous romance story that I read quickly and couldn’t put down.
I highly recommend The Trouble With Love to contemporary romance readers who like diverse urban Chick Lit romance stories with a strong faith element and a touch of suspense that runs through the series.
Read a FREE sample at Amazon.com
More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.
How Sweet It Is by Robin Lee Hatcher — A businessman trying to reconnect with his brother returns to his hometown and rents the apartment where his great-great-grandparents lived during the late 1920s. He never suspects his attractive landlady, a struggling restaurant owner who works with women at a local shelter, is the one person who might help him reach his brother. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)
Love’s Autumn Harvest by Patricia Lee — All Eily McKintrick needed was an onion. Across the fence an entire garden waits, but her brusque and unfriendly neighbor Marshall Frye doesn’t want to trade for the needed vegetable. Annoyed, Eily crawls through the fence to borrow the onion anyway, risking the wrath of the contrary man at the property line. If she’s caught. Marshall would only be too happy to gift the widow with an onion, if it weren’t for her choice of friends. She spends time with Hillary Shepherd, a determined divorcée with her sights set on him. After his wife died, he retired early as a high school principal to live a contented solitary life growing vegetables for the local food banks. But when he finds Eily on her knees in his garden, the ensuing adventure is more trouble than either are prepared to handle. Will Eily and Marshall find love in their back yards? And will Hillary be pleased? (Contemporary Romance from Mountain Brook Ink)
Ready to Trust by Tina Radcliffe — Rancher Reece Rainbolt’s shocked to learn he’s inherited half of Claire Ballard’s family farm—and that he’s a father. Now Claire’s determined to break ties with the man who once left her behind. But Reece will buy her half only on one condition: she must stay in town to help with the harvest…and let him get to know his little girl. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])
The Truth About Fame by Toni Shiloh — My life has always been in the spotlight. Born to two famous parents and then quickly rising to “super” status in the modeling world ensured that I, Astoria “Tori” Bell, would always have my image plastered across newsstands. Unfortunately, adoring fans weren’t always magnanimous and now I have a stalker on my hands. Oddly enough, the tall, dark, and all-too handsome bodyguard hired to protect me seems more harmful than the threatening notes from the stalker. As well as his plan to flush out the danger by proposing a fake engagement. The lines between pretend and reality blur and I have to shore up my resolves. Baggage from my past means I can’t let myself be vulnerable. But the way Marcel Fox treats me has me thinking otherwise. With a new rock on my finger and the man who put it there by my side, happily ever after seems like a possibility or is that as fake as my public persona? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)
Falling for the Innkeeper by Meghann Whistler — Single mom Laura Lessoway won’t accept her mother’s plan of selling her late grandmother’s inn without a fight. But when big-city attorney Jonathan Masters arrives to arrange an offer from his client, she’s drawn to him. And working together as he helps with repairs only brings them closer. With his career and her home on the line, can they ever find common ground? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])
A Place to Call Home by Susan Page Davis, Susanne Dietze, and Erica Vetsch — Duck for cover in the Superstition Mountains as a woman flees her capture and a marshal pursues his prisoner while the couple is handcuffed together. Exit a stagecoach in an Idaho boom town, where a mail-order mix-up has everyone scrambling to right an embarrassing mistake—or was it really a blessing? Gallop into Fort Bliss, Texas, where a battle wages between an eastern fashion artist and a US Cavalry surgeon for the custody of two orphans. Delight in the journey as faith and romance intersect in these three full-length novels. (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)
The Gentleman Spy by Erica Vetsch — He only wanted a duchess for a day–but she’s determined to make it a marriage for life. When his father and older brother suddenly pass away, the new Duke of Haverly is saddled with a title he never expected to bear. To thwart the plans of his scheming family, the duke impulsively marries a wallflower. After all, she’s meek and mild; it should be easy to sequester her in the country and get on with his life–as a secret agent for the Crown. But his bride has other ideas. She’s determined to take her place not only as his duchess but as his wife. As a duchess, she can use her position to help the lowest of society–the women forced into prostitution because they have no skills or hope. Her endeavors are not met favorably in society, nor by her husband who wishes she’d remain in the background as he ordered. Can the duke succeed in relegating her to the sidelines of his life? When his secrets are threatened with exposure, will his new wife be an asset or a liability? (Historical Romance from Kregel Publications)
A Bitter Brew by Elizabeth Ludwig — The cousins are thrilled when Jan is invited to compete in a nationally televised baking contest. Things go awry, however, when the prize money disappears. Worse, Jan and Elaine find themselves as the prime suspects! Certain they are being framed, the cousins seek out clues that will lead them to the thief. Can they do it before the contest ends, or will they fall faster than Jan’s award-winning souffle? (Cozy Mystery from Guidepost Publications)
Murder at Madison Square Garden by Linda Shenton Matchett — A private investigator helps a scrappy, female photojournalist, who is accused of murder after an assassination attempt on Charles Lindberg at the America First rally leaves another man dead. (Historical Mystery from Shortwave Press)
Explosive Situation by Terri Reed — With his K-9 partner at his side, can he survive false accusations and a bomber? Detective Henry Roarke’s determined to prove his innocence to internal affairs officer Olivia Vance—but first he must survive the bomber targeting him and his bomb-sniffing K-9, Cody. With a coming baby to protect and an investigation to pursue, Olivia has her hands full…until she becomes a target, as well. Can they catch the bomber before they all lose their lives? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])
Rocky Mountain Revenge by Rhonda Starnes — To survive her deadly homecoming, she’ll need to trust a man from her past… Temporarily home to help at her family’s vet clinic, Grace Porter has no intentions of staying—but someone’s determined she won’t live long enough to leave. With both Grace and her sister in the crosshairs, her ex-boyfriend, Police Chief Evan Bradshaw, must protect them. But can the single dad lawman uncover the truth about why a killer’s out for vengeance before time runs out? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])
Relative Silence by Carrie Stuart Parks — Forensic sketch artist Tucker Landry and American heiress Piper Boone form a bond after surviving a mass shooting on Curlew Island. Amid rumors of the Curlew Island Curse which whispers say has taken the lives of several members of Piper’s family, the pair must unravel the Boone family’s true history before Piper becomes the next victim. (Suspense from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)
Heart of a Princess by Hannah Currie — Behind the smiles and designer clothes, Princess Alina has a secret. She’s barely holding it together. After a moment of panic almost ends in tragedy, Alina is sent to a refuge far from the palace to recuperate. Her family claim it’s for her own good but – faced with cows, knife-beaked ducks and far too many of her own insecurities – Alina is pretty sure it will kill her first. And Joha Samson, infuriating man that he is, will laugh as it does. Only there’s more to Joha than she realizes, and more to herself too. When the time comes to make a stand, will she find the courage? (Young Adult from WhiteFire Publishing)
I have just had another phone call with yet another innocent wanna-be author. Another person launching into a new business but being too independent.…Don’t be too independent! — An excellent post at International Christian Fiction Writers by Christine Dillon on the importance of researching publishers before signing a publishing contract.