I hope all my American readers had a lovely Independence Day. We had lots of fireworks scattered throughout our area and we could enjoy some of them from the front porch before bedtime. We also got a bit of a lightning show from God and we loved that His always far outweighs the others.
How is the summer reading coming along? Some of you shared a few books you were tackling this summer. Feel free to give me an update or share your recommendations in the comments below. I posted my summer reading challenge at the beginning of June if you are interested in seeing that.
I have a few books in the stack right now. True to form I am reading mostly nonfiction again. I can’t help it. LOL I tend to be a research minded human and love learning. I also love diving into a topic when it hits my radar and learning everything I can about something. I am not a halfway person by any stretch of the imagination. I need to know ALL THE THINGS. With that in mind here are the next books up in my stack… some are already in progress.
It is also the beginning of the second half of 2021. I know… hard to fathom but we are there. I am doing a revamp after evaluating goals and such for the next 6 months. My word for this year has been abide… it is still extremely relevant so I will stick with that.
I have been offline for the month of June and am still plugging away until the middle of July, except for blog reading and writing. I have taken several breaks from social media this year. I have deleted my Facebook and Twitter accounts completely and am toying with the idea of walking away from Instagram still. It is looking more and more like I will leave a shadow account to point here to the blog and keep my list of friends there to check in with once a week or so.
With the time offline I have done some serious clearing of stuff. I sent 5 boxes of books out as well as about 10 bags and boxes of stuff we no longer need. I feel lighter with each thing that leaves. It has been good for me to dive into this project.
God has also been doing some things in our lives here that have us really clinging to Him right now, too. I don’t feel like sharing yet but our lives are changing and God is doing a new thing with us.
One of the things I am doing more of is diving into a few cooking shows I have had in my queue for a long time. Rachel Allen is a culinary instructor and chef in Ireland. She has several shows up on Amazon Prime and BritBox. This Rustic Plum Pie is one I made the other day after watching one of her episodes. I happened to have plums in the refrigerator and I don’t need much incentive to eat pie. It is super quick and tasty with a side of whipped cream or ice cream.
I suspect you could substitute other fruit in this recipe. I might try one with peaches or apples soon. I encourage you to check out Rachel’s shows if you have those streaming options. She is a great teacher. Every time I watch an episode I want to get on a plane and head to Ireland. She shares the food and beauty of the country in every episode. I have tried several of her recipes and have not been disappointed. Check outher recipesandher cookbooks.
This is the second book in a series and I am sad to say I have not read the first one yet. It seems to be a stand alone novel in some regards but does allude to a character from the first one sometimes. That does not seem to hinder the story at all.
We open this story with the main character, Early Pines. He is a detective in the little southwestern town of Paradise. He has just been suspended from duty following an altercation with a citizen of that town. He is still angry about the death of a friend (from the first novel) and fighting the urges to “self medicate” to cope. He has a friend who talks him into a road trip to Old Mexico to distract him from his current woes. This road trip is barely underway when they are stranded in a little town to have his truck repaired. He encounters a local bar owner, Calico, who shares that her brother, who had moved to Los Angeles, CA, now seems to be missing. This piques his interest and he commits to help her find out what has happened to him. This begins a road trip to California and an adventure he never dreamed was ahead for him and his new road trip buddy, Calico.
I have been privy to several different authors and stories over the years because of my marriage to my husband. He is an avid Louis L’Amour fan. He is also a reader of Tony Hillerman (Jim Chee character) and Robert B. Parker stories (Jesse Stone character). He has exposed me to these stories over the years and I have loved them almost as much as he has. We have watched the movies made from these novels together, as well. This story has elements that remind me very much of the stories from these authors. It is a modern day Southwestern US mystery/adventure story. The writing style is very engaging and drew me in from the first chapter. It was hard to put this novel down and I really enjoyed it from start to finish.
This is my first encounter with Buck Storm’s work. I can say with certainty that it will not be my last. This is a different book than I typically review here. It is from a Christian publishing company but it is not the standard romantic fare that most of those publishers produce. I think this is a great change of pace if you are looking for something a little more intriguing and edgy without all the edgy language and explicit descriptions. It may also have a bit of romance along the way but that is not the ultimate purpose of the story. If you are a Christian fiction reader (and even if you are not) who is looking for something a little different, I highly recommend this series and other books written by Buck Storm to you.
This book was sent to me free of charge from Kregel Publishing. I was asked to read it and give an honest review for you. My most honest opinion on this one is that I wish I had found this author sooner. It was fantastic! I will be going back to read the first book in this series.
I started reading on June 1st for summer but have been remiss at getting this post up sooner. I shared two review books with you recently and am currently reading the third one from that stack. I have not taken any more currently so that I can focus on a few other things this summer that are more pressing. We have our youngest finishing up his junior year by the 15th and then we start the year long process of senior year. First of all, I am in total shock that we have reached this place. Secondly, I have determined to take memory snapshots all the way through this process. It has been a joy to have him to ourselves for the last 3 years as our other children have not been permanent residents here outside of a few coronavirus months. He has been in an “only child” mode and we have enjoyed our time with him as the “baby” of the family. That being said, I am also off social media a whole lot more these days and am currently reading a few books that might push me to take the leap to be off completely except for this blog. The Four books in progress are…
The stacks I have set aside for the rest of the summer are here but I reserve the right to change or add to at any time. LOL Which I tend to do but as of today, June 6, 2021 (D-Day) this is my story and I’m sticking to it!
What are you reading this summer? I would love to know. Drop me a comment below with your list or share your blog link if you have a post on summer reading. Thanks for stopping by!
Isn’t that cover lovely? This is the second story from Carolyn Miller that I have enjoyed. She writes Christian fiction and, in particular, novels set in the Regency Era. She was part of the Regency Christmas collection I shared with you all at Christmas. I do enjoy a good Regency novel these days. This one is the first in a trilogy to be released in the coming months. The series is called Regency Wallflowers but I guarantee the young lady in this story is a lovely woman with great focus on her calling. This Heroine is not what most people mean when they call someone a wallflower in modern times. If you want to find out more about Carolyn Miller and her other books you can head over to her website. You can also sign up for her newsletter to stay on top of the coming books in this series.
Mary Bloomfield is the daughter of a physician. She has poured herself into being his assistant and has let marriage age pass her by. Those around her continue to remind her that her stubborn and forthright spirit seems to be running men off. She seems to have little concern for what they have to say. She has faced some hard situations in her work and seen many things most people never encounter. She has found a life with which she can find contentment and is not really looking for companionship among the male population of her community.
A friend of her family, a woman named Emily, is waiting for her fiancé, Adam Edgerton, to return from the war. She got word that he would be arriving solo ahead of his troop. Both his family and her family find themselves concerned to hear this news and await his arrival with trepidation. Once he arrives the community realizes that he is not the man who left. With his medical needs Mary is forced to come alongside him in a battle for his life and future. Both Adam and Mary find challenges ahead they never dreamed they would face in their lifetime. The only thing that would sustain them is the God that would bring peace in the midst of the worst that life can throw at them.
This story has no shortage of drama and adventure. Carolyn Miller’s writing kept me quickly turning pages. She has a great talent for descriptive writing and for crafting a beautiful narrative. I was enthralled with this tale. I loved the life of Mary and her compassion and sensitivity toward those she worked with even in the darkest and hardest of situations. She had a real gift for comforting and encouraging those she treated. It is a beautiful story!
I truly enjoyed being a part of this blog tour team. I received a copy of the book for free from Kregel Publishing. I was only asked to read it and give an honest review to share with my readers. I am delighted to recommend this novel and look forward to the next two in the series. If you love regency era novels and hardship forged love stories this is a perfect fit for you. Check out the link below to enter a giveaway for this book and a great collection of goodies to go with it.
This is the third book in the Three Sisters Island series by Suzanne Woods Fisher. The overall story is about a father and his three daughters who are living on a small island on the north eastern coast called Three Sisters Island. Each book focuses on one sister and her story with traces of story for the other two. The father’s story is told through all three with a lovely surprise ending for him in the final book. The series can be read out of order or as individual stories without needing a lot of background. There are always little connections that are made better by reading a complete series and this is a delightful series. I encourage you to pick them up if you have not read them. They are great summer reads if you are looking for something to start your summer break. This particular one leads up to Memorial Day weekend for it’s close.
The final novel, At Lighthouse Point, is the story of the youngest sister, Blaine Grayson. She has just returned from a trip to Paris that turned into several years in culinary school there. She was escaping some hard events that forced her out of her culinary program in the United States. She was also struggling with the continued heartache over the loss of her mother several years earlier. As she journeyed through this new life in France she found that God had a plan for her there in France but she faced some hard days to get to that point. When she arrived home she had a young man from that new life named Jean-Paul with her. These stories always have an element of faith and overcoming in them. Fisher weaves beautiful threads of faith throughout her stories.
I don’t want to spoil the stories of the other sisters here in this review so I will only say that the other two sisters are still in the picture and they are all now living with their father at Kicking Moose Camp. Paul, the father of the bunch bought the camp property in the first book and he and his daughters joined forces to get the camp up and running for the summer camp season. It seemed the community is not really excited about all the summer “guests” that come to the island during this time. There are dire mistakes made in the designing of the new kitchen and a multitude of repairs have gone unnoticed for a long time. On top of everything else the estranged grandfather of the girls and father to Paul shows up unannounced to stay indefinitely. The big question the family has to ask is, “Will we be ready to open by Memorial Day?”
There are community struggles, camp struggles, sister conflicts, life decisions, and there is always romance in the air somewhere on the island.
I received this book free of charge as part of a blog tour from Revell Books and was asked to read and give an honest review. I really enjoyed the whole series but I think this one is my favorite. I loved the young Chef Blaine and her adventures and was often hungry as I read about all her delightful food. She was a creative young culinarian with some amazing motivation to accomplish her goals and dreams.