Thursday, February 25, 2016

A Timeless Romance Anthology: Mail Order Bride Collection

A Timeless Romance Anthology: Mail Order Bride Collection by Stacy Henrie, Kristin Holt, Annette Lyon, Sarah M. Eden, Heather B. Moore, and Sian Ann Bessey

Summary from Goodreads:
Six Award-Winning Authors have contributed new stories to A Timeless Romance Anthology: Mail Order Bride Collection. Six historical romance novellas set in the Old West.

WRITTEN IN HER HEART, a charming novella by Stacy Henrie, Georgeanna is getting desperate. She can’t fund her favorite orphanage unless she marries and secures the rest of her inheritance left by her father. But her father’s financial planner, Clay, can't understand why she's not content with her current situation. Georgie determines to send out a notice as a mail order bride to attract suitors who won’t know her financial situation. Little does she know, Clay takes up the pen and sends her letters of his own under an assumed name. After years of working for Georgie’s father, Clay realizes he isn’t ready to watch her marry another, not when his heart is already claimed by her.

In Kristin Holt’s delightful novella WANTED: MIDWIFE BRIDE Dr. Naomi Thornton thinks she has it all: a beautiful house, a loving husband, and a fulfilling career. But when everything she holds dear is ripped away, Naomi has no choice but to start over. What will she find in the wild and untamed Wyoming Territory? Dr. Joe Chandler has waited years for a wife with the knowledge, skills, and tender heart he yearns for in a medical colleague and lifetime companion. When a midwife arrives with more expertise and secrets than he counted on, Joe quickly discovers there’s more to love and marriage than a simple mail order contract.

In THE SOUND OF HOME, a captivating novella by Annette Lyon, Marilyn is given the choice of either marrying the despicable Victor or being charged with a murder she didn’t commit. Refusing to believe that either is her fate, she finds a third option: she answers a mail order bride advertisement and boards a train to Wyoming to wed a man named Harry. Moments after her arrival, she learns that Harry isn’t who he seemed to be, and the advertisement turns out to be a giant mistake. Harry’s brother Thomas agrees to let her stay until she can figure out what to do next—after all, she simply cannot return to New York—but Marilyn quickly finds herself developing feelings for Thomas.

In Sarah M. Eden’s endearing novella FOR BETTER OR WORSE Gerald Smith, on the advice of his well-meaning neighbors, has decided it’s time to change his lonely existence. Mary Hill, on the advice of her empty pocketbook and non-existent roof over her head, has decided it’s time to secure herself a future. A mail-order marriage, they both realize, is no guarantee of happiness, but it is a risk they are willing to take. However, coming face to face on the train platform, the hapless couple discovers an unexpected truth: marriage to a perfect stranger is sometimes far preferable to the prospect of a lifetime with someone you used to know.

Heather B. Moore’s sweet novella THE INCONVENIENT BRIDE sees Carmela traveling from Boston to Colorado, eager to meet the man she’s been corresponding with and will soon marry. Her brother’s new marriage leaves little room for Carmela in her old life. Upon arrival in Leadville, she faces a rude awakening, and the only one who can understand her predicament is her fiance’s brother, Samuel. But Samuel can’t possibly help her out of an awkward situation, can he? It would be better for all if she returns immediately to Boston and pretends she never traveled to Colorado in the first place.

THE PRICE OF SILVER, an engaging novella by Si├ón Ann Bessey, Katie leaves New York for Idaho to marry Jake, a man she’s written to a couple of times. But when she steps off the train, his brother Caleb is there to greet her. Jake has gone to take a mining job he couldn’t pass up. Caleb takes Katie back to the family ranch to wait for Jake’s return. The more Caleb gets to know Katie, the more he envies his brother, but he can’t let his heart overrule his head unless Jake changes his mind about his intended bride.

5 Stars

Received ebook in exchange for an honest review

My Review:
It is fun to read an entire collection of Mail Order Bride stories. I think it is a fascinating part of our country's history. There is potential for adventure, love, a new start, and of course, the potential for disaster as well.

With many Mail Order Bride stories, there is a formula: Man advertises, Woman responds and travels to Man's location. Man and Woman meet and get married, and then fall in love. 

This collection mixes that formula up. With misunderstandings, heartbreaks and abandonment, desperation, loneliness and stupidity, somehow these stories find a way to bring 2 people together. There isn't a simple formula. Each has some sort of twist to keep the reader interested. With that being said, this is the Timeless Romance Anthologies, so each story does have happiness within all of the mix ups.

Warnings: None

I would let my 18 year old read this collection.

You can purchase this book at
A Timeless Romance Anthology Blog 
Barnes and Noble

Monday, February 15, 2016

Not Always Happenstance by Rachael Anderson (Power of the Matchmaker)

Not Always Happenstance by Rachael Anderston

Summary from Goodreads:
From the Power of the Matchmaker series

Lani has lived in Hana, Hawaii for five years. She's learned to surf, fish, dive, and manage her grandmother's bed and breakfast. She's also learned to take one day at a time the way it should be taken--relaxed and unrushed, savoring every moment.

But, like a large wave on the brink of breaking, her life is about to crash out of control. A proposal of marriage, a conniving grandmother, a cryptic Asian woman, and a handsome guest, and suddenly everything calm begins to churn, everything clear becomes confused, and all that was normal segues into peculiar.

As Lani struggles against the current to hold her ground, she realizes that she can either continue to fight and eventually lose, or take a take a leap of faith, hold her breath, and ride the wave wherever it takes her.

4.5 Stars

Received an ebook for an honest review.

My Review:
This is the next story in the Power of the Matchmaker series. Each story is stand alone, they just have the common thread of Miss Pearl, the Matchmaker. She appears in each story.

In Not Always Happenstance, Miss Pearl plays an important role, not just as a matchmaker, but also in life lessons. Miss Pearl becomes a good friend to the characters in the story and I enjoy reading about her.

Lani is at a crossroads in her life. She doesn't want to face it though. What was meant to be a temporary situation has become a wonderful part of her life. She doesn't want to leave. With experiences and talks with her grandmother, Miss Pearl, and the new guest at her Bed and Breakfast, Lani is able to see what she truly wants and she is willing to face what may come with that decision.

As much as this story has romance, and I like it, what I truly like about this story is that both main characters, Lani and Easton (the man who becomes her love interest), come to know themselves better and what they want in their lives. Sometimes each of us has those times that we do what we think we are supposed to do. Or we do what we have always done, without giving it much thought. These 2 characters become more deliberate in their decisions and figuring out what they want in their lives and who they want to be. What a wonderful thing to be able to find that in your life and find love at the same time.

Warnings: None

I would let my 18 year old read this book.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Three Little Words by Jennie Hansen, K.C. Grant, and Aubrey Mace

Three Little Words by Jennie Hansen, K.C. Grant and Aubrey Mace

Summary from Goodreads:
The road to true love never did run smooth, but a few bumps along the way make it all the more thrilling. This timeless truth is showcased in Three Little Words, a charming compilation of short stories written by a trio of popular LDS romance novelists. Readers are invited to follow the journeys of three young women as they encounter love where they least expect it.

Rescuing Bailey by Jennie Hansen

For as long as she can remember, Bailey has loved the boy next door. But despite her feelings, his schedule and his little brother keep getting in the way. Will her childhood crush finally blossom into something real, or will she discover that true love is waiting just around the corner?

Three Little Words by K.C. Grant

The bet is simple: Elizabeth, a speech therapist, has three days to teach a country bumpkin with a drawl as thick as molasses how to speak like a gentleman. But as she gets to know her charming student, it soon becomes clear that there may be more to him than meets the ear.

A Crying Shame by Aubrey Mace

Cassidy is in love with the idea of love, though after her most recent breakup, the possibility of finding Mr. Right seems hopeless. But when she meets a handsome classmate in her painting class, she may end up learning more about chemistry than about art.

4 Stars

Received ebook in exchange for an hones review.

My Review:
I enjoy reading compilations of short stories. I like the length of the stories and I like to get to know new authors through the collections. I have read another short story by Aubrey Mace. I also like happy stories. With a title like "Three Little Words" I hoped I was getting a clean and happy collection.

And, the stories are all that I hoped for. The stories are stand alone, they do not connect to each other. They do each have scenes where "three little words" are spoken. In some cases, saying those words is the start of a deeper relationship. In others, it has the opposite effect. Each story leaves me feeling like there is hope found in love and sharing that love with the right person for you.

Warnings: None

I would let my 18 year old and my 14 year old read these stories. (Ugh, my teenagers are growing up!)