Monday, February 28, 2011

BLOGGER MOM ABDUCTED BY MARTIANS!

You know those days when you’d like to run away from being a mom? The kids are on your nerves and it seems as if no one needs you anyway? Be honest, we all have them! Well, imagine if you were abducted by Martians, would anyone miss you, would anyone care? How many days of celebrating would your kids go through before they really miss you? Now, I imagine this really depends on how old your children are, my kids are 16 and almost 15, they could probably go for days and days without me! So, this got me thinking about what my kids would miss most about me, here are my top ten…feel free to comment with your top ten, this could be fun!

1. Cooking fine meals
2. They’d start to miss me when they ran out of clean dishes
3. When they run out of home made cookies..realisticly this could only take a day
4. Taking them to their 4H events, no D.L yet for the 16 yr old!
5. My excellent grocery shopping skills
6. The songs I make up about them on a daily basis, they really love these!!!
7. Telling them to do their school work
8. Laundry…they don’t like to do laundry
9. Refereeing their arguments and swooping in to save the day
10. Just plain old everything about ME

I was ready to hit the top 10 with ease, but once I started it really was difficult, it makes you think….what is it about you that those you love can’t do without, I would hope all of me, except for when my temper gets the best of me! We would all hope that our children couldn’t live without us, as a mom with teens I have come to the other side of this dream, realizing that there are some days they can’t wait to leave the ‘nest’. Yes, this is sad, but a fact of life and the process is slow and painful. I remind myself that God has this all planned out, it’s why they argue and why we don’t always get along with our horny headed, fanged teenagers, it makes us happy at times that they’ll flee from the nest soon!

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my kids and hate to see the day they leave home, there just happen to be some days…..you know what I mean!

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms blogging program, for a gift card worth $25. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

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CFBA: Book Review, When All My Dreams Come True






This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
When All My Dreams Come True
Harvest House Publishers (February 1, 2011)
by
Janelle Mowery


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Beginning in 1998, Janelle Mowery coordinated and wrote for the Children’s Ministry of a Christian website called The Invisible Connection. When the holder of that site discontinued the ministry and website in the year 2000, she began writing inspirational fiction romance novels.

Janelle became a member of American Christian Fiction Writers in the year 2002 and is an active member and leader in one of their critique groups, which has provided many opportunities for growth and development. In 2003, she entered her first novel in the Noble Theme contest and was named one of the top ten finalists in the historical category. In 2004, she had a short story titled ‘A Fair Chance’ published in the e-magazine, Romancing the Christian Heart. In 2005, her third novel, entered in the San Gabriel Writers’ League ‘Writing Smarter’ Contest, won first place. Also, Janelle’s fifth novel made it to the top ten finalists in the Noble Theme contest.

In 2006, she signed her first contract with Barbour Publishing in their Heartsong Presents Mysteries line. The novel, Where the Truth Lies, which she co-authored with Elizabeth Ludwig, released in spring of 2008. The second and third mysteries of the series, Died in the Wool and A Black Die Affair, is set for release in 2011.

Janelle has signed with Harvest House for a historical series set in Colorado. Release of the first book is set for early 2011. She has also signed with Summerside Press. Her novel, Love Finds You in Silver City, Idaho, released in October 2010.

Janelle has been married twenty-one years and is the mother of two sons. She is a member of Sandy Point Bible Church and serves as Treasurer. She also assists in the church’s teen program.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Bobbie McIntyre dreams of running a ranch of her own. Raised without a mother and having spent most of her time around men, she knows more about wrangling than acting like a lady. The friendship of her new employer awakens a desire to learn more about presenting her feminine side, but ranch life keeps getting in the way.

Ranch owner Jace Kincaid figures the Lord is testing his faith when a female wrangler shows up looking for work. Bobbie has an uncanny way of getting under his skin, though, and he’s surprised when she finds a home next to his heart. But when his cattle begin to go missing and his wranglers are in danger from some low-down cattle thief, can Jace trust God, even if it may mean giving up on his dreams?

An adventurous novel of faith, hope, and love in the Wild West.

If you would like to read the first chapter of When All My Dreams Come True, go HERE.

MY THOUGHTS:
We all have dreams, but at what cost do we try to capture our dreams?  When you meet Bobbie McIntyre you'll meet a young woman who gives her all to fulfill her dreams, but as she gives her all she gives up a lot of herself in the process.  As Bobbie begins her work with young rancher, Jace Kincaid, she learns once again how to be a lady, how to be loved and how to love God.

This is a story full of action, action that you wouldn't expect in a story about a young woman in 1872.  The battles that Bobbie fights could break just about anyone, the battles could make a person stronger, or make a person simply quit trying, Bobbie is one person you'll be happy to meet!

I enjoyed this book, it's nice to read of courage, hope and strength.


**I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from CFBA

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

San Francisco!

I've been traveling lately, we're near San Francisco...where I must say is one of the most beautiful areas I have ever been to. Today we went into San Fran. wow...what a feeling to see the Golden Gate Bridge as well as the awesome town of San Francisco! Everywhere we turned there was something incredible...if only I had more time, for those of you who live here....WOW, do you ever get tired of the tourists?!



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Friday, February 25, 2011

CFBA: Book Review, Operation Bonnet





This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Operation Bonnet
David C. Cook; New edition (February 1, 2011)
by
Kimberly Stuart



ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kimberly says:


I am a writer of comedic fiction, and would like to suggest that you laugh regularly when reading my books. Let’s also try for one to two teary moments. If you are crying more than that, you don’t understand my sense of humor and should move on to another author.

I grew up in a book-loving home. Actually, that’s not entirely accurate. My mom loves books. My dad loves to read the first chapters of books and then make us all listen as he recites his favorite passages. I, however, enjoy reading books in their entirety and came into writing as a result of book-love. After earning two fancy degrees in education and Spanish, I promptly let the thinking part of my brain take a breather and instead became pregnant. (I’m sure a lot of other things happened between early literacy and pregnancy but I don’t really remember any of that. If you also have shared your uterus with another human, you understand.)

In an effort to author a book that would entertain my sassy, irreverent, breast-feeding/drooping friends, I wrote my first novel, Balancing Act. People were so nice to me after that, I decided to continue with writing. Also, I can’t craft, knit, or scrapbook, so what else was a nice, Christian girl to do?

In addition to writing books to make my friends laugh and cry, I observe the chaos at the home I share with my unfailingly supportive husband and three offspring. We’re doing our best and so far, no one’s been to prison.

ABOUT THE BOOK


Twenty-year-old Nellie Monroe has a restless brilliance that makes her a bit of an odd duck. She wants to be a private investigator, even though her tiny hometown offers no hope of clients. Until she meets Amos Shetler, an Amish dropout carrying a torch for the girl he left behind.

So Nellie straps on her bonnet and goes undercover to get the dish. But though she’s brainy, Nellie is clueless when it comes to real life and real relationships. Soon she’s alienated her best friend, angered her college professor, and botched her case.

Operation Bonnet is a comedy of errors, a surprising take on love, and a story of grace.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Operation Bonnet, go HERE.

Watch the book video trailer:


MY THOUGHTS
You know you have a good book in your hands when you're already laughing in the first few pages!  This book is full of humor.  I love the brainy main character Nellie, she is just plain fun, and when she goes under cover and visits Amish Grandmother Mary each week it seems as though she's met her match!  Nellie does not get all the fun in this book though, we also have her grandmother who loves to dance naked, and Nellie's client, ex-Amish Amos who has a love for old tv shows and brightly colored shirts!

You're going to love this book, especially if you enjoy humorous story lines and witty, colorful characters!



*I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from CFBA, I was not compensated in any other way for my honest opinion.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Knit Kimono

I found this pattern on the Lion Brand website, it used chunky yarn and only took a couple of hours to knit up! What a fun, little project and the yarn is oh so soft!  Wouldn't this be cute with a frilly little skirt, or with a cute pair of ruffly bottoms?  I have a pattern in mind, can't wait to sew it up and show you!



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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Book Review, Angel Sister

Angel Sister: A Novel

Angel Sister, by Ann H. Gabhart, the best selling author of The Outsider is a slow starting story that will wrap it's fingers around you and hold you tightly throughout the entire story, leaving it's mark behind.

Kate Merritt is a young girl, too young to have to worry about keeping everyone together, too young to be worrying about everything, but yet that's exactly what she does.  She cares for her father when he comes home drunk, she looks after her mom and sisters and has a heart as good as gold, but watch out when she's crossed, she's one who sticks up for her own.

One day Kate comes across a young girl sitting on the steps of her grandfather's church, a young girl who is going to create havoc in everyone's lives, throw the entire town into a battle of wills.  The battle will change some lives forever, for the better, the battle will also reveal some life changing truths.

This is a book of love, a true deep down powerful love and what it can do in your life.  This was a very good read and I highly recommend reading it.


“Available February 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”



**I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing

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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Book Review: The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson

The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson: A Novel

When I first picked up to read “The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson,” I wasn’t sure what to expect. Actually, that’s wrong. I had high hopes for the book. I really love historical novels and the only thing that I doubted about Emily Dickinsons story told by Jerome Charyn only in the aspect that, like some historical fictions, it would drag on. Was I ever wrong!

Before reading “The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson” I hadn’t known much about Emily, one of the greatest poetry prodigies. To one who only has studied the basics of her life, they might wonder, how could she have came up with such fire filled, poignant, and deep poems, when she spent years upon years of her life, staying in her Fathers home. By reading “The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson” you become indulged an entirely different point of view of her life, the experiences that she may very likely experienced, that our English teachers probably skipped over. Jerome Charyn did a wonderful job tell Emily’s story in a delightful, interesting way, letting you into Emily’s life and feeling her pain and happiness. From the people she loved, her many heartbreaks, her sweet dog, her moon blindness that she overcame, people that flitted in and out of her life, and others that haunted her for years, many will be surprised and delighted to take a deeper look at what gave her the “lighting” to write such amazing poems, that are still read and admired today.


I was given a copy of this book for receive from Tribute books, I was not compensated in any other way for my review.  This book was reviewed for me by my daughter over at Garden of Books.


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Monday, February 21, 2011

CFBA: Book Review, Save the Date






This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Save The Date
Thomas Nelson (February 1, 2011)
by
Jenny B. Jones





ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


I write Christian fiction with a few giggles, quite a bit of sass, and lots of crazy. My novels include the Katie Parker Production series and So Not Happening. I would also like to take credit for Twilight , but somewhere I think I read you’re not supposed to lie.

When I’m not typing my heart out (or checking email), I teach at a super-sized high school in Arkansas.

My students are constantly telling me how my teaching changes their lives and turned them away from drugs, gangs, and C-SPAN.

Okay, that’s not exactly true.

Some facts that are true include:

I've always been refined!

A. I got my camera confiscated by big boys with guns at the American Embassy in Europe this past summer. O la la!

B. I once worked in a seed mill office and cleaned out mice on a regular basis. Ew.

C. I’m a former drama teacher.

D. I didn’t pass my drivers test the first time. Or the second…

E. I attract stray animals like a magnet.

F. I used to assemble and test paint ball guns for a local factory...

Since my current job leaves me with very little free time, I believe in spending my spare hours in meaningful, intellectual pursuits such as:

-watching E!

-updating my status on Facebook

-catching Will Ferrell on YouTube and

-writing my name in the dust on my furniture

I’d love to hear about you, so drop me a note. Or check me out on Facebook.

ABOUT THE BOOK

You’re invited to the engagement of the most unlikely couple of the year.

When the funding for Lucy’s non-profit job is pulled, she is determined to find out why. Enter Alex Sinclair, former professional football star and heir of Sinclair Enterprises—the primary donor to Lucy’s Saving Grace organization. Alex Sinclair has it all . . . except for the votes he needs to win his bid for Congress. Both Lucy and Alex have something the other wants. Despite their mutual dislike, Alex makes Lucy a proposition: pose as his fiancĂ©e in return for the money she desperately needs. Bound to a man who isn’t quite what he seems, Lucy finds her heart – and her future – on the line.

Save the Date is a spunky romance that will have readers laughing out loud as this dubious pair try to save their careers, their dreams . . . and maybe even a date.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Save The Date, go HERE

MY THOUGHTS:
Ok....did you read the sections up above about Jenny Jones?  She's fun, she's spunky and the book is all her!  This is a very fun read, I don't know how far I would go to get what I want, and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't get myself engaged to someone I don't like at all, but that's exactly what Lucy does.  As you read the unlikely tale of two people acting in love as a means to an end you'll find humor, a bit of stress, a lot of made-up tales, but will you find love?  That's a question I'm not going to answer, you'll just have to read this wonderful story for yourself!   I'd happily read this story again and pass it along to my friends, I can also say this is a great beach read since that's exactly where I read this book!

**I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for review
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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Dishcloth Challenge: Cloth 2:24 and 3:24

I have finally taken some photos of my monthly dishcloth knitting challenges! I'm about to begin cloth #4 so I thought I really should post an update on the other 2! So far I'm keeping on track but I have such terrible knitting A.D.D that I just can't knit only 1 thing at a time! This week I made a baby kimono, 2 fish baby cloths and I'm in the middle of a baby big and have started a pair of lacy beaded fingerless mitts as well as a black/silver scarf...so you see, A.D.D at it's best! What's on your needles?



I'll post photos of my other projects soon!

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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Book Review: The BIG Show Stopper

The Big Show Stopper (A Pinky and the Bear mystery)



Ken Dalton's Bio:
Ken Dalton was born in 1938. In a turn of bad luck, the dreaded Polio virus found Ken. At the end of World War II, Ken's family moved to Cheyenne, Wyoming for a year where he learned how to live through snow blizzards, avoid walking through the large pile of coal in the basement, and how to survive life as an Army Officer's brat on a base called Fort Warren.

By the age of sixteen, after eleven years of operations, therapy, and braces, Ken's luck changed dramatically when he met the girl of his dreams at a party. A few years later they married, produced three wonderful children, and settled into a happy life in Southern California.

In 1966, Ken, who worked as a technician for Pacific Bell, and his family left Southern California for the green hills of Sonoma County where they bought a home in Sebastopol surrounded with apple trees. A few years later, Ken and Arlene built a new home on three and a half acres. They raised cows, pigs, and learned how to build outstanding fences. While their children grew, they hosted two exchange students, Eva Reimers from Sweden, and Tanja Wuttke from Germany, both of whom are still loved members of the Dalton clan. Also during those years, Ken was promoted to management at Pacific Bell. He eventually ended up responsible for all the central offices, sixty-three, in an area that covered five counties.

In 1977, Ken, Arlene, Bob Wiltermood, and his wife Norma, designed, built, and operated a 2000 case winery named Pommeraie Vineyards. They produced award winning Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. However, after Bob died, the winery was sold. Ken and Arlene moved to a hilltop in Healdsburg.

With the winery gone, and time on their hands, Ken and Arlene started to perform with the Camp Rose Players. Twenty years and forty productions later, both are still acting and singing.

Life was good. All Ken had to do was learn some lines and bow when the audience applauded.

Then, ten years ago, in a moment of madness, Ken started to write. His first article was published in Golf Illustrated in August 1996. More golf articles followed in national and regional magazines including Golf Magazine and Fairways and Greens.

After a two-year stint on the County Grand Jury, Ken felt the need to begin his first novel.

Now, after a decade of struggle to learn the craft of writing, Ken has become the publishing world's latest overnight sensation.

MY THOUGHTS:
My initial feelings about this book were that I didn't really like it due to the bad language in the beginning of the book.  As I read on though, the language improved and the story line grew on me!  Imagine going to a concert, a concert of your idol then seeing him die right before your eyes.  Not only seeing him die, but having parts of him splattered on you.  That's just the beginning!

The characters in this story have some pretty colorful names, Pinky the attorney, Bear the investigator, and Ice the cop.  How the three of these men treat each other is funny in itself, but as they try to solve the murder of singer Brady Bradshaw they each have some of their own personal problems and antics. 

Will Pinky solve the mystery in time to receive his large bonus from Brady's widow or is going to fall prey to women along the way?  How about Bear, can he survive sharp tongued Flo and will he be able to continue getting large amounts of money from Pinky, or will Ice catch up to him and throw him in jail?


This book is full of twists and turns and will keep you on your toes!



**I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Tribute Books, I was not compensated in any other way for my honest review.
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Friday, February 18, 2011

Lady in the Mist, Press Release!

Lady in the Mist: A Novel (The Midwives)
A Whole Town’s Secrets Held by One Woman…
Could anyone get beyond the secrets of her past?
As a midwife, Tabitha Eckles, the woman at the center of Laurie Alice Eakes’ new book, Lady in the Mist, (ISBN: 978-0-8007-3452-7, February 2011, $14.99) knows the most intimate secrets of the women and families she cares for. While the women in town are drawn to her warmth and caring ways, the men are wary at best.
In the little town of Seabourne, Virginia where Tabitha Eckles lives, another standoff is brewing. It is 1809 and relations between America and England rest on the edge of a knife, when Tabitha crosses paths on the beach one morning with a man named Dominick Cherrett. He seems to have his own secrets to keep, including why he, a British aristocrat, is on American soil working as an indentured servant.
One chance meeting leads these two secret keepers through a twisted path of kidnappings, death threats, and public disgrace. Can Tabitha trust Dominick? What might he be hiding? And can either of them find true love in a world that seems set against them?

"Featuring a charming hero with a mysterious past and mission, Lady in the Mist brims with tension, intrigue, and romance."--Julie Klassen, bestselling author of The Silent Governess and The Girl in the Gatehouse
Laurie Alice Eakes began to be fascinated by the role of midwives in history during graduate school and she knew that someday she wanted to write novels with midwife heroines. Ten years later, after several published novels and a National Readers Choice Award for Best Regency, the midwives idea returned, and Lady in the Mist was born. Laurie Alice has a master degree in creative writing and writes full time from her home in Texas, where she lives with her husband and sundry dogs and cats.

Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, offers practical books that bring the Christian faith to everyday life. They publish resources from a variety of well-known brands and authors, including their partnership with MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) and Hungry Planet.

For more information, visit www.RevellBooks.com.

**I am posting this on behalf of Baker Publishing, I have not yet received my book for review, I will post a review once I have received the book!

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Thursday, February 17, 2011

CFBA: Book Review, Words by Ginny



This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Words
B&H Books (February 1, 2011)
by
Ginny Yttrup


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Ginny Yttrup is an author, freelance writer, and writing coach. As she writes, speaks, and coaches, her prayer is that God will use her words to replace the lies so many believe about themselves with the truth of His unconditional love and grace. To see someone grasp, perhaps for the first time, the truth of God's love, is truly an honor. Through a relationship with the Truth, Jesus Christ, the bonds of shame are loosed and freedom abounds!

When Ginny is not working, she loves spending time with her two college-age sons or with friends. She is surrounded by the most amazing people--each a gift in their own way. If she can spend time outdoors with those she love, it's even better. And she thoroughly adores her dog, Bear. He's a book lover too.

She has two grown sons and lives near Sacramento, California. Words is her first novel.

ABOUT THE BOOK

"I collect words. I keep them in a box in my mind. I'd like to keep them in a real box, something pretty, maybe a shoe box covered with flowered wrapping paper. Whenever I wanted, I'd open the box and pick up the papers, reading and feeling the words all at once. Then I could hide the box. But the words are safer in my mind. There, he can't take them."

Ten-year old Kaylee Wren doesn't speak. Not since her drug-addled mother walked away, leaving her in a remote cabin nestled in the towering redwoods-in the care of a man who is as dangerous as he is evil. With silence her only refuge, Kaylee collects words she might never speak from the only memento her mother left behind: a dictionary.

Sierra Dawn is thirty-four, an artist, and alone. She has allowed the shame of her past to silence her present hopes and chooses to bury her pain by trying to control her circumstances. But on the twelfth anniversary of her daughter's death, Sierra's control begins to crumble as the God of her childhood woos her back to Himself.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Words, go HERE.

Watch the book trailer video:



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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

CFBA: Book Review, Lone Star Intrigue




This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Lone Star Intrigue
Avon Inspire (February 1, 2011)
by
Debra White Smith




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Debra White Smith is a seasoned Christian author, speaker, and media personality who has been regularly publishing books for over a decade. In the last twelve years, she has accumulated over 50 books sales to her credit with over 1 million books in print. Her titles include such life-changing books as Romancing Your Husband, Romancing Your Wife, The Divine Romance: Developing Intimacy with God, the The Lonestar Intrigue fiction series, and The Jane Austen fiction series.



As a woman of God, Debra is committed to the highest standards of integrity and to spending hours a week being still before the Father, staying in tune with Him, and listening for His voice of direction in all she does. This commitment to romancing the Lord, coupled with her lifestyle of devouring, analyzing, and dissecting the Word of God has allowed God to bring about a miracle of deliverance and healing in Debra's spirit, mind, and soul. For you see, Debra holds a double Ph.D. from the toughest schools in the world. The first Ph.D. from the "School of Hard Knocks" and the second, from the "School of Very Hard Knocks." Aside from that, she holds an M.A. in English from the University of Texas.





Along with Debra's being voted a fiction-reader favorite several times, her book Romancing Your Husband was a finalist in the 2003 Gold Medallion Awards. And, her Austen Series novel First Impressions was a finalist in the 2005 Retailer's Choice Awards. Debra has been a popular media guest across the nation, including Fox TV, The 700 Club, ABC Radio, USA Radio Network, and Moody Broadcasting. Her favorite hobbies include fishing, bargain-hunting, and swimming with her family. Debra also vows she would walk 50 miles for a scoop of German Chocolate ice cream.



ABOUT THE BOOK



In the small town of Bullard, Texas, the Mansfield brothers seem to have everything in order . . . except for their love lives. Jack is the lonely police chief still pining after Charli, his college girlfriend. Younger brother Sonny keeps busy on the road as a private investigator, and a secret from his past prevents him from finding someone to settle down with. But all that is about to change...

Read the two stories...

In Texas Heat, Charli is wrongly accused of a terrible crime. Now Jack must arrest the one woman he's ever loved and risk everything to prove her innocence and save her life.

In Texas Pursuit, a single mother is a target of a relentless stalker—and Sonny finds himself both the only man who can protect her and the one who inadvertently leads danger back into her world.

Page-turning novels of romance and suspense, the Lone Star Intrigue series will give you faith in the power of love, and remind you that having faith in a God who redeems our mistakes is the greatest love story of all.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Lone Star Intrigue, go HERE.

MY THOUGHTS:
I enjoyed this book, but just when everything was getting exciting it was over!  In both stories there was plenty of action, intrigue and romance just enough to keep everything interesting and of course there is always the knight in shining armor.

In Texas Heat a past romance is rekindled as Jack swoops in to save the day, in Texas Pursuit a broken man finds romance when he least expects it, and a big secret just may ruin his chances at turning his life around.

Both of these stories are great, quick reads and this is a book I will pass along to friends.  Nothing too heavy, and a light touch of faith makes this book a good read for young and old alike.

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