Thursday, September 22, 2016


TEA SHOP FOLLY by CARRIE FANCET PAGELS

I love reading books from this very gifted author. She always fills her stories with faith, humor and a cast of characters that are fun to get to know. The description of the area was so realistic, I felt I was there among the beautiful trees and the lovely town that is the setting for this enchanting story.

Lilly  finds out that she has just inherited a house from her great-aunt and goes to Michigan to see what shape the house is in. Once there, she is amazed at the magnificent home. I could feel her delight as she gazed upon the picturesque three-story home complete with a carriage and horses . But as opens the door, there before her eyes are the treasures of her great-aunt. They were delicate, breathtaking teacups and saucers.  The author captured the pure beauty of each precious teacup as she wrote how magnificent and grand they were. Wouldn't it be wonderful to explore a shop full of teacups and saucers. Each one is displayed  with elegance and intricate details that adorned the beautiful sets. Lily was speechless as she took in the precious gift her great-aunt had left her. Can you imagine seeing a house filled with over a hundred tea cups and now realize you own them?

When Theo is introduced in the story, I instantly liked his character. He is smart, handsome and has a great sense of humor. I loved the chemistry between Lily and Theo and it made for some great moments in the story. Somehow Theo thinks Lily's house is a Tea Shoppe and begins to send customers her way. Can you imagine the shock on Lilly's face when women started looking around in her house and admiring the tea cups? The story is wonderful and full of surprises and a romance that is sweet and enduring. Will Theo  ever find the perfect teacup for his mother? Can Lilly and Theo find happiness together?

The story is well written and I loved how the author gave great details and made me feel like I was sipping tea with Lilly at her home. It is a story that is well written with funny misunderstandings, characters that you instantly  like and a romance that is sweet, endearing and a true joy to read.

I received a digital copy of this book from the author for an honest review.


THEY DANCED ON by CARRE ARMSTRONG GARDNER

This is  a wonderful story that captures the dynamics of family. Throughout the book we get glimpses into the lives of the Darling family. The characters were very relatable and easy to fall in love with. Each character brought a different problem, emotion and importance to the story. I really didn't want it to end and yes there are moments that I felt tears coming as I read about the trials  the family faced.

Jane and Leander are the patriarchs of the family. I loved their dedication to each other and as I read that Leander had ALS, I could feel Jane gather her strength and surround her husband with love and compassion. She has a deep faith in God and assures everyone that Leander will be healed. I loved how the author showed Jane's steadfast hope in God and how she never once gave up. It would be so hard to watch a loved one go through an illness and I felt Jane was a great comfort to Leander. The author did a great job of showing what it is like to deal with a spouse's illness and how it takes the whole family to help out.

I found that each of the siblings had great love for each other and really was invested in each other's lives. The problems that the Darling family faced were real live issues that people face everyday. One of the most unforgettable  parts of the book was the relationship between Jane and her sister. Something happened a long time ago, that Ellen refuses to forgive Jane for. That bitterness has caused such a strain on their relationship . Will Ellen ever find a way to forgive Jane? What secret has  Jane  kept all these years? The dynamics between these two characters were well written and shows how deep a betrayal can destroy a relationship. The story is of a family that faces devastating illnesses, addiction and behavior issues with children in a graceful and loving way. I love how the story was written with such emotion that I felt every tear, hurt and pain the characters experienced. Get ready for a story that will bring tears to your eyes, a smile to your face and  a family that never gives up.

"There was so much of life left, both to sorrow over and to celebrate. "

I received a copy of this book from The BookClub Network for an honest review.

Monday, September 19, 2016


THE THINGS WE KNEW by CATHERINE WEST

I was so captivated by this story, that I stayed up all night to finish it. The story is about a family that went through a very tragic event and the youngest child,  Lynette , is starting to have dreams about that night. She is grown now and has a lot on her plate. Her dad is showing early signs of Alzheimer and it is taking a toll on Lynette. The story really hit home for me as my mother had Alzheimer. It is not an easy illness to watch as the person starts to regress and loses their memories. The author did an amazing job of describing the debilitating disease and how it affects everyone around them.

Lynette has taken on more than she can handle when their beautiful family home is in dire need of renovations. There is little money coming in and it's time to call her siblings home to help.  I loved the way Nantucket was described and I could feel myself there as the winds blew across the trees. The house made me think of a grand house nestled by the beach with loving memories of a happy family. Each character had so much depth and I really feel in love with Gray. He is a famous singer, but his bad choices have sent him into a journey where he realizes he needs help for his addiction. How will he tell his family that he has been living a lie? Will he finally surrender and get help? The friction between the siblings were very well written and I loved how the author allowed them to each share their hurts and feel compassion for each other.

Nick is the next door neighbor that has loved Lynette since they were younger. He comes home to help his dad out when he discovers his dad is very ill. I loved the conflict between father and son that showed how secrets, lies and unforgiveness can destroy a relationship. The author did an amazing job of letting characters experience grace and learn to let go of the past. There is a big secret that will change everyone. Will they be able to become a close knit family again? Can Nick win Lynette's love? I cried at the end of the story because it was such a reminder of grace. Everyone wants grace and when you allow yourself to swallow your pride, it becomes easy to give grace to someone. The story will be one I won't easily forget as it was a beautiful story of a family that was lost, but through grace they were reunited.

I received a copy of this book from The Fiction Guild for an honest review.