The Nanny’s Homecoming

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Title: The Nanny’s Homecoming
Author: Linda Goodnight
Series: A Cowboy For Every Mood
Book Number: 1
Pages: 224
Publisher: Love Inspired
Release Date: June 21, 2011
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When her fiancé calls of their wedding Brooke Clayton comes to her hometown to bury her grandfather only to find out that her and her siblings will have to endure a year in the town of Clayton, Colorado in order to inherit a quarter of a million dollars. But staying in Clayton isn’t as easy as it seems. Brooke has ghosts that she would prefer to leave buried.
When she meets her new neighbor Gabe Wesson and his adorable son, A. J., healing seems around the corner for Brooke, until, that is, someone makes it very clear that they want her gone.
Gabe can’t help falling for Brooke or her way with his son, but when he offers her a job as A. J.’s nanny she refuses leaving him confused. As he keeps trying to get her to the nanny and, he starts to fall for her. But will the age difference be their undoing?
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I’ll be honest, I picked this book because it was at the top of my stack, but after a total of three minutes in this book I was pulled in. I don’t know what it was maybe great writing, maybe it was the hope that book would be great. All I know is that from cover to cover I loved this book.
Though the main character is Brooke, the story begins with Gabe which is a refreshing change from normality.
Another change that I wasn’t too sure was going to be refreshing is the age difference between Gabe, 33, and Brooke, 23. I was nervous but I shouldn’t have been; Linda Goodnight made the age difference a non-issue and left you rooting for their romance to pan out.
In true Love Inspired fashion, the book mostly focuses on the romance of Gabe and Brooke, but does take some twists and turns in the process; like the scare tactics of an unknown man. The segments weren’t too frightening or suspenseful, but they did leave you with a feeling of dread that something terrible was going to happen.
As the story progressed, terrible things did happen, but mostly you got to see the characters of all ages blossom and heal even when they didn’t realize it. Also the characters grew in their faith (always an added bonus) and realized that sometimes God’s plans aren’t always yours.
Very rarely do I read two great books in a row, but this time I did. I can only hope that the next one is just as good, but if not, then I can always come back and enjoy Ms. Goodnight’s book again. I definitely give this book a four out of five.

Thanks to NetGalley and Love Inspired for this book to review.

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A Vision Of Lucy

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Title: A Vision of Lucy
Series: Rocky Creek Romance
Book Number: Three
Author: Margaret Brownley
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Pages: 336
Release Date: June 28, 2011
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Trouble seems to follow Lucy Fairbanks wherever she happens to go, so it’s no surprise that she found herself in a pickle again. When Lucy is trying to get a photograph of the elusive and possibly mythical white mustang she discovers something else entirely. A Wells Fargo stage robbery.
When she somehow finds herself right on top of the problem riding out of control, she is rescued by a man who’s only way of stopping her nervous habit of chattering away is to give her lips something else to do, like kissing.
David Wolf has secrets and is on a mission to get back what was stolen from him as a young boy. He just can’t seem to get a particular chattering woman out of his mind. After getting shot because of and healed by that very same woman, he gets to know her and she him. But he knows that it could never work because of his mixed blood.
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As soon as I started reading the first page of this book I was ripped into the story. The book starts out with no lack of action; within the first few pages Lucy is already facedown on a runaway coach that she has no idea how to drive.
Despite knowing that she would make it through the ordeal safe and mostly sound, I got knots in my stomach and was absolutely enthralled with how well the tension and fear was translated through the pages of the first chapter.
And the quality didn’t diminish after the first chapter. Chapter after chapter is filled with colorful descriptions conjuring up mental images of not only the landscape and characters, but of moods and feelings as well. Each sentence of the book captures the feelings and lets the reader experience it first hand. Every emotion is handled in such a way that makes you feel just what that character is feeling at that moment.
Speaking of characters, there are no want for more in this book. In fact, there are just enough where if your not careful you’ll get confused. Plus there are at least three romances throughout the course of the storyline, not counting Lucy and David’s. The characters, however, could be called a lot of things but shallow is not one of them. Each character has a story and though there are characters where their background doesn’t really take the spotlight, their story is still told to some extent. The characters in this story are memorable and even the unlikable characters are ones that I’ll remember for years to come.
Like I said before there are at least four romances including Lucy and David’s. The supporting character’s romances are quick and certainly a shock to the men, but Lucy and David’s romance takes the course of the 336 pages to develop and grow and even though I would have liked to have some of the limelight be shared with the other romances (or at least two of them) I’m very happy with how they were handled and developed.
Lucy and David’s romance is a mixture of stolen kisses and them searching for David’s treasured box that was stolen by four older boys that shoved him down a river around twenty years prior. Most of their romance is filled with sweet moments that can’t help but make you smile, but it has it’s parts where you want to knock some serious sense into David.
The whole mystery of the book is who the other two boys were that fateful day in David’s life. After they find the third (who it was didn’t really surprise me) and after talking to them, they realize they have to find the fourth man in order to find the prized box, but no one is willing to tell who he is.
Who the final man is and the culprit to a great amount of things comes to light and you discover the reasons and secrets hidden behind their choices. The final man really caught me off guard and the person that ties everything up certain throws me for a loop. The reasons why this person did what they did were off kilter and totally insane, but somehow it worked. I don’t fully understand how, but it did work.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I thought it was going to be just another western with a female photographer, but I was pleasantly surprised. This book is great for teens, adults, and maybe even the occasional mystery reader. I definitely give this book a four out of five.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

The Inconvenient Marriage of Charlotte Beck

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Title: The Inconvenient Marriage of Charlotte Beck
Author: Kathleen Y’Barbo
Publisher: Waterbrook Multnomah
Pages: 340
Genre: Historical Romance

Sorry guys. I moved and have been incredibly busy. But I finally finished The Inconvenient Marriage of Charlotte Beck by Kathleen Y’Barbo.
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Charlotte Beck is entering into adulthood, if only she could act like it. She bucks social protocol at every turn and tends to get into trouble even when she tries to not to.
One of the people that gets caught up in the trouble that is Charlotte, is Alex Hambly. After several bad encounters, they both hope to never see each other again. But Charlotte’s father, Daniel, has an idea; save Alex’s family from financial ruin and let Charlotte go to college but only if the marry.
Both resist, so they come up with a plan; marry and get an annulment. Then, Alex declines the annulment and now Charlotte is stuck in a marriage she doesn’t want; or is she?
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I’m actually ashamed to say that thus is my first book of Ms. Y’Barbo’s that I finished. I started her first novel but I had to send it back to booksfree.com because, unlike the name suggests, it’s not free.
Anyway, this book has good character development. I found that there was no lack of wanting any more backstory. I also liked the contrast between Alex and Charlotte. I liked the fact that England met Colorado; it was a nice difference.
I didn’t, however, like the romance. It was dry and it didn’t really have any “Wow” moments. In fact, the main part of the romance was in the last third of the book and so just when they realize they live each other, the book ends.
The author has done her research, though, when it comes to the setting, Denver and London, and it shows in the weather an the geography and, most importantly, the history.
This book was just a little boring to me it was just lacking some passion and some time for the love to grow. But even though, this book wasn’t I can’t deny the author’s talent at writing and I hope that she continues and I could definitely read another one of her books just for the writing quality if nothing else.
The book has its funny moments, though. There are places that just make you laugh out loud or in the inside. The hint of humor and sarcasm make the characters more real and believable and it’s something that I don’t find in books very often.
Overall, a tad boring and not very passionate though well written with great characters and background story. Perfect for newcomers to romance or a younger audience. I give it three out of five.

I got this book free for this review from Waterbrook Multnomah.