Saturday, July 31, 2010
Instead of disappearing from Elizabeth Bennet's life after she refused his offer of marriage, Mr. Darcy had stayed and tried to change her mind?
Lizzy, as she gets to know Darcy, finds him undeniably attractive and her impulses win out over her sense of propriety?
Madly in love and mutually on fire, their passion anticipates their wedding?
In To Conquer Mr. Darcy, instead of avoiding Elizabeth after his ill-fated marriage proposal, Mr. Darcy follows her back to Hertfordshire to prove to her he is a changed man and worthy of her love. And little by little, Elizabeth begins to find the man she thought she despised, irresistible...
"Shows a different side of Darcy, a bold side unafraid of going after what he wants."
"Sure to appeal to fans of lusty historical romance."
"Abigail Reynolds sure knows how to steam up a page!"
-A Readers Respite
"If you always longed for Mr. Darcy to sweep Elizabeth off her feet, then this is your book!"
-I Just Finished Reviews
For anyone who loves, Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice, this book is a must have. The Pemberley Variations series, takes up the question of What if? If we could change the circumstances just a little, we could see what might have happened if... In To Conquer Mr. Darcy, Abigail Reynolds answers the question What if, Mr. Darcy didn't leave after his failed proposal to Elizabeth? What if he decided to win her heart instead of his pride being injured?
This book is full of romance and love with all of our favorite characters. The head strong and vibrant, Elizabeth Bennett and the honorable, loyal Mr. Darcy. Elizabeth's character is much like she was in Austen's Pride and Prejudice, but in this book we see how things may have been different if she just let go of all of her idea's of propriety and let herself love Mr. Darcy unconditionally. We see Elizabeth as a woman with deep passions which are stirred to life by an irresistible force, in Mr. Darcy. Reynolds makes Elizabeth less proper and easier to identify with. She is still the same headstrong girl but she is helpless against the power of love.
Mr. Darcy is still the same stoic, honorable man, but he is less hampered by his idea's of the aristocracy. He finds himself in love and unable to just idly cast it aside. His love for Elizabeth is so strong that he has to throw out his normal way of doing things and pursue her with great ardor. As in the Pride and Prejudice, he loves Elizabeth but Reynolds allows his to show that love in deeper and more meaningful way. To Conquer Mr. Darcy takes these two characters to a new level of love and passion that will make a true romance fan, swoon!
To Conquer Mr. Darcy is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I am giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
Here is some more information about Abigail Reynolds.
Abigail Reynolds is a lifelong Jane Austen enthusiast and a physician. In addition to writing, she has a part-time private practice and enjoys spending time with her family. Originally from upstate New York, she studied Russian, theater, and marine biology before deciding to attend medical school. She began writingFrom Lambton to Longbourn in 2001 to spend more time with her favorite characters from Pride & Prejudice. Encouragement from fellow Austen fans convinced her to continue asking ‘What if…?’, which led to four other Pemberley Variations and her modern novel, Pemberley by the Sea. Other novels in the series have been written since and have seen great success. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband, two teenaged children, and a menagerie of pets.
Friday, July 30, 2010
The orphaned daughter of a sorcerer and a half-demon, Savannah is a terrifyingly powerful young witch who has never been able to resist the chance to throw her magical weight around. But at 21 she knows she needs to grow up and prove to her guardians, Paige and Lucas, that she can be a responsible member of their supernatural detective agency. So she jumps at the chance to fly solo, investigating the mysterious deaths of three young women in a nearby factory town as a favour to one of the agency’s associates. At first glance, the murders look garden-variety human, but on closer inspection signs point to otherworldly stakes.
Soon Savannah is in over her head. She’s run off the road and nearly killed, haunted by a mystery stalker, and freaked out when the brother of one of the dead women is murdered when he tries to investigate the crime. To complicate things, something weird is happening to her powers. Pitted against shamans, demons, a voodoo-inflected cult and garden-variety goons, Savannah has to fight to ensure her first case isn’t her last. And she also has to ask for help, perhaps the hardest lesson she’s ever had to learn.
I have decided that I really like, Kelley Armstong. She is almost on par with writers like Charlaine Harris and Patricia Briggs in my book. Her, Women of the Otherworld series got me interested in the Paranormal and the 11th book in the series, Waking the Witch, reminded me of what I love about her writing. I would consider this book, paranormal suspense. It isn't a romance, it's definitely Urban Fantasy and the paranormal elements permeate the whole book. Her style is eclectic and different. It's a breath of fresh air from your typical paranormal tale.
The main character, Savannah is part sorcerer, part demon and all independent! She is headstrong and bull-headed. She wants to do things her own way and prove that she has what it takes to make it as a supernatural detective. But, she bites off a little more than she can chew with this mystery. Three women have disappeared and it's up to her to find out what happened to them. At first the bad guys seem like normal goons, but then signs of the supernatural begin to appear. Savannah is a great character, she's a very kick-butt kind of chick, who can take care of business. I liked that about her, despite the fact that it made some of her decisions seem a bit rushed. Full speed ahead and not turning back.
Armstrong's fans will adore this new addition to the series. It may be a little hard to follow for readers who are jumping in on number 11 without, first reading the other 10, but the mystery alone will make figuring it all out, worth while. Readers will be swept away with all of the supernatural elements in this book. From shaman to stalkers, to occasional cult member, readers will get their dose of the paranormal with this novel.
All eleven novels in the Women of the Otherworld series are available NOW from your favorite bookseller. Including # 11, Waking the Witch.
I liked this one a lot and I'm giving it 5 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
Here is more information about Kelley Armstrong.
I’ve been telling stories since before I could write. My earliest written efforts were disastrous. If asked for a story about girls and dolls, mine would invariably feature undead girls and evil dolls, much to my teachers’ dismay. All efforts to make me produce “normal” stories failed. Today, I continue to spin tales of ghosts and demons and werewolves, while safely locked away in my basement writing dungeon.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
50 Harbor Street Cedar Cove, Washington
Considering that I'm married to Cedar Cove's private investigator, you might think I enjoy mysteries. But I don't - especially when they involve us! Roy and I have been receiving anonymous postcards and messages asking if we "regret the past." We don't know what they mean…
On a more positive note, we're both delighted that our daughter, Linette, has moved to Cedar Cove to work at the new medical clinic. A while ago I attended the humane society's "Dog and Bachelor Auction," where I bought her a date with Cal Washburn, who works at Cliff Harding's horse farm. Unfortunately Linette is less enthusiastic about this date than I am.
Speaking of Cliff, the romance between him and Grace Sherman is back on. But that's only one of the many interesting stories here in Cedar Cove. So why don't you drop by for a coffee at my husband's office on Main Street or our house on Harbor and I'll tell you everything that's new!
Haunted by the death of her sister and wounded by her ex-fiancé's accusations, Kate Lange throws herself into her new career at a high-powered law firm.
When the grandmother of a lonely private school student seeks her counsel, Kate thinks it's just another custody case. But then the teen is brutally murdered. And it isn't only Kate who wonders if her legal advice led to the girl's death.
Put on notice by Randall Barrett, the firm's charismatic managing partner, Kate must fight for her career, for her reputation—and for redemption.
Unwilling to live with the damage she may have caused, Kate pursues the case on her own and unearths some chilling facts.
Facts that lead straight to the heart of a legal conspiracy.
Facts that lead Kate directly into the surgically skilled hands of the Body Butcher.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Everybody knows everybody in The Hollows, a quaint, charming town outside of New York City. It’s a place where neighbors keep an eye on one another’s kids, where people say hello in the grocery store, and where high school cliques and antics are never quite forgotten. As a child, Maggie found living under the microscope of small-town life stifling. But as a wife and mother, she has happily returned to The Hollows’s insular embrace. As a psychologist, her knowledge of family histories provides powerful insights into her patients’ lives. So when the girlfriend of her teenage son, Rick, disappears, Maggie’s intuitive gift proves useful to the case—and also dangerous.
Eerie parallels soon emerge between Charlene’s disappearance and the abduction of another local girl that shook the community years ago when Maggie was a teenager. The investigation has her husband, Jones, the lead detective on the case, acting strangely. Rick, already a brooding teenager, becomes even more withdrawn. In a town where the past is always present, nobody is above suspicion, not even a son in the eyes of his father.
“I know how a moment can spiral out of control,” Jones says to a shocked Maggie as he searches Rick’s room for incriminating evidence. “How the consequences of one careless action can cost you everything.”
As she tries to reassure him that Rick embodies his father in all of the important ways, Maggie realizes this might be exactly what Jones fears most. Determined to uncover the truth, Maggie pursues her own leads into Charlene’s disappearance and exposes a long-buried town secret—one that could destroy everything she holds dear. This thrilling novel about one community’s intricate yet fragile bonds will leave readers asking, How well do I know the people I love? and How far would I go to protect them?
When well-laid plans go awry, can she still make her dreams come true?
Charlotte Vance is a young woman who knows what she wants. But when the man she planned to marry joins the Shakers—a religious group that does not allow marriage—she is left dumbfounded. And when her father brings home a new wife who is young enough to be Charlotte's sister, it is more than she can bear. With the country—and her own household—on the brink of civil war, this pampered gentlewoman hatches a plan to avoid her new stepmother and win back her man by joining the Shaker community at Harmony Hill. Little does she know that this decision will lead her down a road of unforeseen consequences.
Ann H. Gabhart brings alive the strikingly different worlds of the Southern gentry, the simple Shakers, and the ravages of war in 1860s Kentucky to weave a touching story of love, freedom, and forgiveness.
As many of you know, I live in Kentucky and when I find a book that has Kentucky as it's setting, I'm very interested in it. This is Ann Gabhart's third book about The Shakers of Kentucky. It is set in the 1860's when the war had literally destroyed families as well as homes and businesses. The Shakers during that time were a voice of reason, the believed in simple living and quiet harmony and that appealed to many people during this time in Kentucky's history.
The problem with the Shakers came into existence with their own belief system. Because they did not believe in marriage they had to gather their followers from the general population. Eventually that meant that the Shakers died out, but their legacy lives on. Gabhart certainly did her research. She captures the daily like of the Shakers in great detail and lets the reader see what life in a Shaker community might have been like.
Charlotte Vance's character reminds me somewhat of my aunt. She was tenacious and she didn't give up. When circumstances didn't go her way, she found a new way. Charlotte was forced to change the plan of her life when the man she intended to marry joined the Shaker community at Harmony Hill. Her father married again and what was she to do? She joined the Shakers with the intent to get her man back, but what she found was totally unexpected. I liked her character a lot. She was able to make a way where there didn't seem to be one. She learned so much about what she believed. It was a journey of self discovery.
“Available July 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”
I am giving this book 5 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
Here is some more information about the author, Ann Gabhart.
Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several novels, including The Outsider, The Believer, and The Seeker. Her latest novel was inspired in part by the many stories her mother and two aunts told her of growing up in small town Kentucky during the 1930s. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in Kentucky.
Sometimes the life you save may be your own.
Laurie had her own shattered dreams before she came to work at Crystal Peaks Youth Ranch—the ranch of rescued dreams—where broken horses and broken children encounter healing every day. Reaching out to save a dog in need, Laurie soon realized that the dog was rescuing her.
An inspiring true story told through the engaging voice of Kim Meeder, Blind Hopereveals poignant life lessons Laurie experienced from her ailing, yet courageous canine friend. Despite the blindness of her dog—and her own heart—Laurie uncovered what she really needed most: authentic love, unconditional trust, and true acceptance, faults and all.
As Laurie and her dog, Mia, both learned to follow the lead of a master they couldn’t see, Laurie discoverd the transforming power of God’s selfless love even for imperfect and selfish people—and she experienced a greater love than she has ever known.
“Love is a bridge that stands firm through difficulties and connects one heart directly to another, not because of how it looks, but because of what itis.” —Kim Meeder, Blind Hope
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
The Story Behind the Story: TOO RICH and TOO THIN, Not an Autobiography.
On a Saturday afternoon when I was fourteen, my older sister invited me along on a guest pass to the fancy spa where she was a member. The idea appealed to me as a kid who spent fifteen to twenty hours a week riding horses, but had no experience with the more glamorous side of exercise. I donned my shorts and T-Shirt, excited and ready for my introduction to the world of women’s fitness.
On arrival, my sister greeted her spiffy pony-tailed trainer and I tagged along, spasmodically trying out a variety of machines that looked suspiciously like some I’d seen pictured as favorites of bitter European queens during the Dark Ages. But, I was having a good time, all and all. With my outdoor schedule, I wasn’t likely going to end up a regular at the spa, but I was enjoying the heck out of my guest pass.
At least I was having fun until a spandexed trainer roaming the spa with a clipboard spotted me floundering naïvely amongst the equipment and offered me a free body appraisal. Free being in my price range, I jumped on the opportunity to add value to my guest pass. The pretty lady led me into an office and whipped out a tape measure. As a fourteen year old with the above mentioned lack of spa sophistication, I sat, stood, turned, held out my arms, and offered up my sunburned neck. She was at least twenty-five and had instruments. Thus, I obeyed. Also, remember, at fourteen free was still a big draw.
Then the woman took the page off her clipboard and made entries into a calculator on her desk. After a few minutes of electronic humming, she swiveled her chair to match up her knees to mine. She knitted her forehead with great importance and proceeded to inform me that: my upper arms were 1.4 inches too big, my forearms and wrists were slightly out-of-sync, but perhaps, acceptable given my overly large hands. My waist-to-hip ratio was off by 2.4 inches, my neck was .4 inches under-sized which could be my age, and my ribcage was too large for my breast size. I lost conscious attention before she got to my thigh and lower leg deformities.
Amazingly, after informing me of the specifics of what was wrong with my body, with an absolute straight face the woman looked me straight in the eyes and asked if I would like a copy of the information. A free copy. I declined. Talk about some information a fourteen-year- old doesn’t need. Something no woman needs.
We have mirrors. We have clothes that fit and those that don’t. I couldn’t possibly think why any woman could possibly benefit from to the decimal records on how her body differs from the “ideal.”
When I chose the cover and the title for the humorous mystery, TOO RICH and TOO THIN, Not an Autobiography, I reflected on my teenage spa experience. The women who come into my psychology office, like the one who peers at me out of my mirror, tend to see a face and body worse than the reality. The cover for the book shows a regular-sized, normally saggy, middle-aged woman with un-fussed-over hairdo painting a self-portrait using a mirror. On her easel she has painted a slender woman with great hair. Studies show that people who over-estimate their physical and social desirability have more fun in life. Knowing those studies, I’ve often thought, “What if, as a psychologist, I could help people see themselves as better-looking than they are?
To approach the body image issue a bit differently through fiction, one of the lead characters is so obsessed with the way she sees herself that she has her bedroom walled in distortion mirrors reflecting a younger and slimmer woman.
Behind the mystery in TOO RICH and TOO THIN, Not an Autobiography is the story of women’s struggle with self image in an image conscious world.