Category Archives: Romance

Review: Home for the Challah Days by Jennifer Wilck

Title: Home for the Challah Days by Jennifer Wilck
Holidays, Heart and Chutzpah Book One
Publisher: Harlequin Special Edition
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 293 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by the Author



Turning the bitterness of the past…

Into a sweet future!

When big-city advocate Sarah Abrams returns home for the High Holy Days, she’s got a lot on her mind—especially whether to marry her perfect-on-paper boyfriend. The last person she wants to encounter is Aaron Isaacson, her first love and the one who broke her heart. But after Aaron and Sarah join forces to fight an act of hate, it’s clear that their deep connection never abated. If only they could forgive one another for the past…in time for a sweet new start!

From Harlequin Special Edition: Believe in love. Overcome obstacles. Find happiness.

Holidays, Heart and Chutzpah

Book 1: Home for the Challah Days


Home for the Challah Days by Jennifer Wilck is a charming romance that also features topical issues.

Sarah Abrams and Aaron Isaacson are former sweethearts whose lives went in separate ways. After college, Aaron returned home to take over the family deli while Sarah moved to DC to turn her dream into reality. After a ten-year separation, Sarah returns to her hometown for a couple of weeks to mull over a possible life-altering decision.

Sarah is very goal-oriented with a life plan firmly in her mind. An unexpected question sends her into a bit of a tailspin so she decides a vacation at home will assist her with her choice. This becomes a turning point as her tunnel vision about her life begins to widen and distance provides her with much needed clarity.

Aaron is very dedicated to his family and he is nursing a ten-year pain that makes it difficult for him to be around Sarah. He impetuously lashes out in anger as circumstances begin to occur outside of his control. Aaron can be very rigid and he does not communicate as well as he could.

The sparks definitely fly between Sarah and Aaron. But she has not been completely forthcoming about certain aspects of her personal life. When unexpected events occur within their community, she begins to see that her current path might not be her only choice.

Home for the Challah Days is a delightful romance with vibrantly drawn characters and a close-knit community. Sarah and Aaron undergo tremendous growth when they realize their goals and dreams change over time. Their small town is diverse and helpful in times of need. Unexpected societal situations explore out of the ordinary solutions when shocking incidents occur.  Jennifer Wilck brings this marvelous romance to a realistic and heartfelt conclusion. Highly recommend!

Comments Off on Review: Home for the Challah Days by Jennifer Wilck

Filed under Contemporary, Harlequin Special Edition, Holidays Heart and Chutzpah Series, Home for the Challah Days, Jennifer Wilck, Rated B+, Review, Romance

Review: Unladylike Lessons in Love by Amita Murray

Title: Unladylike Lessons in Love by Amita Murray
The Marleigh Sisters Book One
Publisher: Avon
Genre: Historical, Mystery, Romance
Length: 319 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher


Amita Murray takes us on a journey from the pleasure gardens of society to the dangerous streets of 19th century London, in this spectacular romantic debut by an unforgettable new voice.

“Women mind their reputation if they want to marry. I don’t want to marry.”

As the eldest daughter of an English earl and his Indian mistress, Lila Marleigh knows what it’s like to be an outsider from “polite” society. As children, she and her sisters were wrenched from their home and sent to England, never quite accepted by those who claimed to care for them. Now Lila has set herself up as hostess of an exclusive gaming club, charming the ton that flocks to her establishment each night, though it shuns her by day.

One night, Ivor Tristram comes barging through her door, accusing her of being his father’s mistress. Lila defies his expectations at every step and convinces him to navigate London’s rat pits and pleasure gardens with her, in her quest to solve a violent crime.

As they set out together to uncover the truth, an irresistible passion ignites that will shake them to the core. Lila must fight to protect those she loves, yet the biggest threat is to the sanctity of the heart she has guarded so carefully all her life.


Unladylike Lessons in Love by Amita Murray is a delightful historical romance which features an intriguing mystery.

Lily Marleigh is the illegitimate daughter of an English earl and his Indian mistress. Following the deaths of her parents, she and her sisters are sent to England to live with his estranged wife (weird, huh???).  Now in her late twenties, Lily is a strong, independent woman who is unconcerned about her reputation. She runs a salon which is popular among the peerage and she has no desire for marriage. Lily can sometimes be impetuous but her heart is the right place. When someone from her childhood needs her assistance, Lily does not hesitate to jump into the fray. Even if it means she must join forces with Ivor Tristram.

Ivor have the highest opinion Lilybut he agrees to help her find out the truth about her friend’s plight. His viewpoint of Lily is colored by his concern for his mother and his father’s history of marital misdeeds. Ivor has worked hard to turn around his family’s fortunes and he continues to work hard. Despite his better judgment, Ivor is determined to see his commitment through in helping Lily uncover the truth for her friend.

The sparks fly between Lily and Ivor right from their first meeting. Given what he thinks of her, Ivor is not exactly thrilled with his fascination with Lily. And Lily is a bit dismayed by her attraction to Ivor. Yet they try to put their feelings to the side as they work together. As they spend time together, they begin to realize they might have misjudged one another.

Unladylike Lessons in Love is an engaging romance with a diverse cast of characters. The storyline is multi-layered and compelling. The mystery aspect is perfectly balanced with the romantic element of the plot. The various characters are well-developed and quite charming. Lily and Ivor’s romance is both sweet and steamy with little conflict until late in the story. With unexpected twists and turns,  Amita Murray brings this marvelous historical romance to a heartfelt conclusion. This first installment in Marleigh Sisters series will leave readers impatiently awaiting the next installment.

Comments Off on Review: Unladylike Lessons in Love by Amita Murray

Filed under Amita Murray, Avon, Historical, Mystery, Rated B+, Review, Romance, The Marleigh Sisters Series, Unladylike Lessons in Love

Review: Falling Hard for the Royal Guard by Megan Clawson

Title: Falling Hard for the Royal Guard by Megan Clawson
Publisher: Avon
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction, Romance
Length: 380 pages
Book Rating: C

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher


Love is in the heir in this royally good rom com – perfect for anyone who likes relatable heroines (with great hair), hot and aloof book boyfriends (with great hats), near misses, almost kisses and a corgi or two.

Despite living in an actual castle, happily ever after is evading Margaret ‘Maggie’ Moore.

From her bedroom in the Tower of London, twenty-six-year-old Maggie has always dreamed of her own fairy-tale ending.

Yet this is twenty-first century London, so instead of knights on white horses, she has catfish on Tinder. And with her last relationship ending in spectacular fashion, she swears off men for good.

And then a chance encounter with Royal Guard Freddie forces Maggie to admit that she isn’t ready to give up on love just yet… But how do you catch the attention of someone who is trained to ignore all distractions?

Can she snare that true love’s first kiss… or is she royally screwed?

A right royal rom com, perfect for fans of Red, White and Royal Blue and The Royal We.


Falling Hard for the Royal Guard by Megan Clawson is a contemporary British romance with a delightfully unique setting.

Twenty-six-year-old Margaret “Maggie” Moore is stuck in a dead-end job and currently living with her dad after finally leaving her ex-boyfriend, Bran. She is easily distracted, anxious and completely lacking in self-worth. Instead of confronting people and issues, Maggie runs away and privately bemoans her fate to her beloved cat. Will an unexpected meeting with a Royal Guard lead to love?

Freddie is the Royal Guard in question and he runs so hot and cold, it is impossible to guess how he feels about Maggie. He does introduce her to his fellow Guards so that is a big plus since Maggie finally ends up with friends her own age (since she usually hangs out with her dad and his friends). They are also instrumental into convincing her to give on-line dating a chance (gah!).

Falling Hard for the Royal Guard and Maggie are a bit of a hot mess. Maggie is a frustrating character with questionable judgment and work ethics. Freddie has a lot of potential but he is dealing with the weight of parental expectations. Maggie and Freddie eventually get their respective lives together but it would have been much more enjoyable if their romance had been given more time on page.  What really saves the book is the characters’ personal growth, the excellent setting and Megan Clawson’s exceptional attention to historical details.

Comments Off on Review: Falling Hard for the Royal Guard by Megan Clawson

Filed under Avon, Contemporary, Falling Hard for the Royal Guard, Megan Clawson, Rated C, Review, Romance

Review: Strawberry Lane by Jodi Thomas

Title: Strawberry Lane by Jodi Thomas
A Touching Texas Love Story
Someday Valley Book One
Publisher: Zebra Books
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 284 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher


Fans of Robyn Carr and Susan Mallery will adore this heartwarming new book from the beloved New York Times bestselling author. In a small Texas town where most families go back generations, four strangers meet and unite as they bury a father none of them has ever seen and begin slowly to piece together a bond that will not only change them, but the community for the better.

Starri Knight is a big believer in fate. How else to explain the compelling connection she feels to the stranger she pulls out of a wrecked car on the very same road where her parents died twenty years earlier? Alongside Auntie Ona-May, the only mother she’s ever known, Starri saves Rusty O’Sullivan’s life—just as Ona-May once did when Starri was an orphaned babe. But convincing Rusty he has something to live for is going to take all of Starri’s faith in miracles . . .

Like a wish he hadn’t even known to make, Starri landed in Rusty’s life, filling him with a longing for a family. . . . Then Jackson Landry, a new lawyer, turns up to present a surprise that will change the direction of his life: An inheritance from the father Rusty never knew—and the promise of the family he’d never had. It’s a lot for the hard-bitten loner to
accept as love rushes into his life . . .

A sense of duty has Rusty heading to Honey Creek to deal with his father’s estate—and find his lost siblings. But having family is one thing, learning to love them is another. Good thing new friends are by his side to help him along the way.


Strawberry Lane by Jodi Thomas is a sweet contemporary romance featuring an eclectic yet interesting cast of characters.

Lawyer Jackson Landry is still mourning the loss of his parents while struggling to settle into taking over his father’s law practice. One of his first cases involves finding recently deceased Jamie Ray Morrell’s four children. Jamie Ray was not involved in their lives, but he leaves them all his worldly possessions. Jackson stumbles across the first heir, Rusty O’Sullivan, during a storm in which Rusty has been in a serious accident. Jackson is also enchanted by co-rescuer Starri Knight but their age difference could be a stumbling block.

Rusty has been in more than his share of accidents but his multiple injuries mean a long recovery period. He is charmed by Dr. Amber Adams but since he is used to everyone leaving him, Rusty does not believe he has a future with her. He also has an added complication when Jackson finds one of his younger brothers. Will Rusty convince Amber to take a chance on love?

An unrelated but no less enjoyable romance takes place at the local hospital. Emergency room nurse Emma Sumers visits her old friend Heath Allen Rogers’ hospital room every evening when her shift has ended. He is experiencing unexpected health issues and Emma takes every chance she gets to spend time with him while hoping Heath will soon fully recover.

Strawberry Lane is a delightful romance with (mostly) interwoven storylines. The various characters undergo tremendous growth as they find cherished friendships together and love. While some of the couples’ story arcs are not completely wrapped up, hopefully readers will get the opportunity to revisit them in future installments in Someday Valley series. This wonderful romance is sure to be a hit with old and new fans of Jodi Thomas.

Comments Off on Review: Strawberry Lane by Jodi Thomas

Filed under Contemporary, Jodi Thomas, Rated B, Review, Romance, Someday Valley Series, Strawberry Lane, Zebra Books

#FridayFeature Review: A Rancher Worth Remembering by Anna Grace

Title: A Rancher Worth Remembering by Anna Grace
Love, Oregon Book One
Publisher: Harlequin Heartwarming
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by the Author


Could this unforgettable rancher…

Be her perfect match?

Matchmaker Clara Wallace keeps her anxiety in check by avoiding messy complications—including gorgeous and stubborn rancher Jet Broughman, her teenage crush. That’s not so easy in small-town Oregon, especially when Clara starts matchmaking for Jet’s best friend. Fully prepared to clash with a skeptical Jet, Clara is shocked at his kind, steady help with her work… Could Clara be ready for a second chance match of her own?

From Harlequin Heartwarming: Wholesome stories of love, compassion and belonging.

Love, Oregon

Book 1: A Rancher Worth Remembering
Book 2: The Firefighter’s Rescue


A Rancher Worth Remembering by Anna Grace is a sweet contemporary romance set in a small Oregon town.

Clara Wallace is a matchmaker with a big heart and determination to help her clients fall in love.  She is close to her brothers, twin sister and parents. Clara is upbeat and happy but her tightly controlled life is threatened when she runs into her high school crush, Jet Broughman.

Jet left town after high school for Seattle where he attended college and forged a successful career. But he always hoped to return to Outcrop and work on his family’s ranch. Jet is slowly building his business but after he and Clara cross paths again, he hopes their past does not wreck his professional relationship with her brother’s restaurant.

The specter of their failed high school romance looms over them as their lives in the present become entangled. Jet is plagued by his childhood insecurities and fears of being abandoned. Clara has the tools to cope with her own issues but is she prepared for the feelings she still has for Jet? And is Jet ready to put his heart on the line once he realizes how deeply he cares for Clara?

A Rancher Worth Remembering is a heartfelt romance with a delightful cast of characters. Jet and Clara are appealing characters with realistic issues that will resonate with readers. The small-town setting is charming and serves as a wonderful backdrop for Clara and Jet’s friendship to deepen into love. An uplifting and entertaining romance that will leave readers eagerly awaiting the next installment in Anna Grace’s Love, Oregon series.


Filed under A Rancher Worth Remembering, Anna Grace, Contemporary, Friday Feature, Harlequin Heartwarming, Love Oregon Series, Rated B+, Review, Romance

Review: Finding Her Amish Home by Pamela Desmond Wright

Title: Finding Her Amish Home by Pamela Desmond Wright
Humble Blessings Book One
Publisher: Love Inspired
Genre: Contemporary, Amish, Inspirational, Romance
Length: 224 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by the Author


What she wants more than anything
Could also be the most dangerous…

After her twin sister’s death, Maddie Baum flees to Wisconsin Amish country with her nephew in tow in the hopes of protecting him from his criminal father. Befriending Amish shopkeeper Abram Mueller gives her a glimpse of the happiness she’s been yearning for all along. Can she find a fresh start with Abram—or will old sins tear them apart?

From Love Inspired: Uplifting stories of faith, forgiveness and hope.


Finding Her Amish Home by Pamela Desmond Wright is an incredibly heartwarming Amish romance.

When Maddie Baum needs to relocate to keep her son Josh safe, she moves to a town with an Amish community. She is searching for a new beginning but she also hopes to recreate the sense of community she experienced as a child. Maddie’s previous decisions are weighing on her as Abram Mueller and his family and friends welcome her and Josh with open arms. Will her guilt prevent her from opening her heart to the opportunity to return to her Amish faith?

Abram is a kind-hearted man whose past leaves him weighted down with regrets for a tragic mistake. He is unfailingly generous with his time and assistance to anyone in need. Abram is charmed by Maddie and due to his own childhood experiences, knows exactly how to help Josh with the issues the young boy is experiencing. Josh is a steadying presence for Maddie and Josh but does she return his deepening emotions?

Finding Her Amish Home is a delightful romance with appealing characters. Maddie is very mature for her age due to the heartache she has experienced in her life. Abram is a wonderful man but he cannot let go of his past mistakes. The romance between Maddie and Abram is very sweet.  The storyline is engaging and deals with issues that are relatable and realistically portrayed. With a gentle undercurrent of faith, Pamela Desmond Wright brings this charming romance to a very touching conclusion.


Filed under Amish, Contemporary, Finding Her Amish Home, Love Inspired, Pamela Desmond Wright, Rated B+, Review, Romance