Saturday, November 21, 2015

Thanksgiving Give-away: Falling Like Snowflakes by Denise Hunter

Thanksgiving Give-away!!

Falling Like Snowflakes by Denise Hunter
WIN a free copy of the first book in Denise Hunter's newest Summer Harbor Series, Falling Like Snowflakes! 

This is the perfect book to curl up with on a cold winter day! Stranded in Summer Harbor, Maine during a massive snowstorm and through the holiday season, Eden Martelli is on the run from dangerous men who want to destroy her life. When she meets the Callahans, they offer her a place to stay - and a family to call her own. Book one in the Summer Harbor series is the perfect read to get swept away in - suspense and romance all wrapped up in the festive feel of Christmas! 

To win a copy of this book, all you have to do is comment on this post so we know you were here! All names will be thrown in a hat and one lucky winner will be randomly chosen on Sunday, November 29th at 9:00 p.m. EST. 

Also, check out our review of this #goldenlist bookFalling Likes Snowflakes

Best wishes and thanks for visiting 2 Chicks on Lit!

Only available to US Residents

Friday, November 20, 2015

Love Without End (By: Robin Lee Hatcher)

Love Without End

By: Robin Lee Hatcher
We have many of Robin Lee Hatcher's books on our recommended reading list, but it's been awhile since we have picked one up a new one. Love Without End has been in our stack of "need to read" books and we are thrilled to find it was a beautiful story! Might we even suggest this story should be made into a satisfying, sigh-worthy Hallmark movie? Oh to live in a place like Kings Meadow!!!
Two single parents, both tending to past hurts, and neither are looking for love. Yes, this book had a great storyline! Kimberly Welch lost her husband along with her wealthy lifestyle. Now she and her daughter are living with her old friend in Idaho and wondering what is next in life. She needs a job and plans to move back to Seattle as soon as she can. 

After Chet Leonard lost his teenage son in an accident, his wife abandoned him and their other two sons. Now, his boys and his ranch are all he has left. When Chet agrees to help tame Kimberly's daughter's horse, little does he know that this girl and her mother will soon win a place in his heart! But are they here to stay or just passing through for a short time? 84 year old Nana Anna also comes back to live at the ranch and with her she brings her spunk, love and well told stories

While being a lighthearted story, this read also held our attention throughout. Nana Anna, having grown up on the ranch, has a special place in the book: we get to travel back to the past and read her life story. We can all learn so much from Anna and her will to live life to the fullest, regardless of past hurts and trials. Kimberly and Chet are guarded, and with good reason; but it's such a sweet road to travel with them as they and their kids start to warm up to and love each other. Life can be hard, and will continue to be hard, but walking with those we love can make it worth it.

Faith is evident and real in this story. Chet and Kimberly both have faith, yet need to grow a little in their walks with the Lord and we see that as the story progresses. But Anna, especially, has a vibrant faith that radiates through all she is. We soaked up her journey and walk with Jesus. She knows her Savior and shows how she learned to trust Him through the valleys and mountaintops. Makes you long to have a Nana Anna in your own life!

Squeal Factor
Not sure we would use the term "squeal factor" in this book, but it was completely satisfying and sweet. Some scenes put a smile on our faces and had us cheering for these two characters, whose second chance at love was beautiful and heartwarming.

Soak up the western ranch life in beautiful Idaho and fall in love with these heartwarming characters! We cannot wait to visit Kings Meadow again in Robin's next book

Find it on Amazon: Love Without End

Monday, November 16, 2015

The Wedding Chapel (By: Rachel Hauck)

The Wedding Chapel

By: Rachel Hauck
This story centers around residents from Heart's bend, Tennessee, a small town outside of Nashville. Three of its natives have found a new life in New York City, but are being drawn back to their hometown: Jack, Taylor and Colette. 

Jack and Taylor, former high school classmates, are now married after a whirlwind elopement six months earlier, but are both facing a very real question after the honeymoon: Are they truly committed to seeing this marriage through for life? 

Taylor's great Aunt Colette, also in New York City, has just retired from acting and has an illustrious career behind her. But she cannot forget the one man she has ever truly loved - the one who built a wedding chapel for her back home. Sixty years ago, Jimmy Westbrooke declared his love for and his intention to marry Colette, but then went off to war - and she never saw him again. 

Meanwhile back in Heart's Bend, Coach Jimmy Westbrooke has been living all this time without the love of his life. His once cherished wedding chapel and his heart have remained empty. But when Taylor shows up at his door to take photographs of the chapel, will his heart awaken again to second chances? This engaging read goes back and forth between the past and present, and it's easy to get hooked on this story right from the beginning!

This book captivated us from the first page and never stopped pulling us in. We were completely swept away into the story, so much so that we didn't want the book to end! Author Denise gave us her usual intriguing characters and dynamite romance, but she also ventured into the world of mystery and suspense and nailed it!

Real life family drama and marriage struggles are at the heart of this story! Author Rachel gives us a vivid inner look at the thoughts, emotions and motivations of her characters, and paints a vivid picture of what might lie behind people's outer actions.

The faith doesn't ramp up too much until the end of this read, but when it does, it is powerful! Some characters have a solid relationship with the Lord, and for those who have drifted away, the Lord leads them back to Himself gently, softly and faithfully. We are reminded that true freedom is not found by anything or anyone until it is found in Him.

Squeal Factor
As we journey through the love stories both of past and present, our hearts are definitely hooked! The tender love and emotions in Jack and Taylor's marriage have us cheering for them right from the start and only get deeper as the book goes on. Jimmy and Colette's romance from ages past is sweet, tender and deep.

Rachel Hauck's newest novel is a solid, enjoyable read that you will be swept away in almost right from the beginning. She seamlessly weaves past and present into the plot and reveals more of the story with each chapter. Enjoy a few late nights while reading this one!

Find it on Amazon: The Wedding Chapel

Note: We were given this book in exchange for our honest review 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Isle of Hope (By: Julie Lessman)

Isle of Hope

By: Julie Lessman

Lacey Carmichael has returned to her hometown in Georgia, where she left a trail of broken hearts and burned bridges ten years ago in an act of rebellion. Now that she has turned a new leaf, God leads her back to make amends with her father, her best friend and Jack - the fiancĂ©e she left behind. Last Lacey knew, he was a young Godly man attending seminary to become a pastor. But upon her return, she is shocked to find Jack is now a doctor and running from God after a wild lifestyle. Additionally, both Lacey's father and best friend refuse to forgive her. How will she persevere in reconciliation when she faces so many obstacles? A rich cast of characters entertains us as we move through this good read. 

However, a few plot inconsistencies distracted us from getting as hooked into the story as much as we would have liked.

Wowza, this book does not shy away from the ugly realities of life! Broken families are at the root of the issues here and all the pain and destruction caused by a single family member's actions. We have the pleasure of knowing characters' inner thoughts and feelings, and author Julie is a master at bringing hope into even the most devastating of situations.

God is at the center of Lacey's desire to return home and make amends. And her calling isn't an easy one - many are the bridges she burned and the hurt she inflicted all those years ago, and bitterness runs rampant among some of the characters. However, even the most broken of people are restored and given new life in Christ's forgiveness and redemption.

Squeal Factor
Author Julie is one of the best at writing romance! She has an incredible ability to make us, as the readers, feel what the characters are feeling. Her romantic scenes get our hearts racing, and the love stories are genuine and deep.

Julie Lessman is one of our favorite authors, but unfortunately this newest read fell just shy of the mark for us. As mentioned above, a few plot inconsistencies distracted us from being swept away into the story. But the main reason for our less than stellar rating was simply the long length of this novel. Although the story was excellent, the conclusion felt like it was too long in coming. We will say, however, that the characters stuck with us long after we finished and we hope the remainder of the series will hit the bulls-eye!

Find it on Amazon: Isle of Hope

Note: We were given this book in exchange for our honest review 

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor (By: Melanie Dobson)

Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor

By: Melanie Dobson

New-to-us author Melanie Dobson has caught our attention and we are eager to introduce our friends to her phenomenal books!

Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor's story is told alternating between one generation and the next. It begins in 1950's England where Walter and Maggie Doyle are are joining their lives together, but secrets shadow their newly spoken vows. As the years pass, they face challenges that threaten to tear them apart including a special needs daughter, Libby, and a suspicious death of the boy next door. Fast forward to today, and Libby's sister Heather is headed back to England to wrap up the estate of her recently deceased father, Walter Doyle. What she thinks will be a simple task instead unearths secrets and shocking revelations about her childhood that urge her to extend her visit and search for answers. In addition to this, she must also come face to face with her first love from years ago and finally confront the problems that broke them apart. 

Melanie Dobson has an incredible gift for plot twists, revealing mysteries slowly and tying up loose ends. Her writing is masterful and we have yet to read one of her books that hasn't earned a five-star rating in our storyline criteria. We were completely swept away in Walter, Maggie and Heather's story!

Many deep issues of life are explored in this book. One of our favorites was that of children with special needs, and what they faced in the mid 1900's, before doctors fully understood their needs and before society appreciated their strengths. Melanie delicately writes Libby's unique beauty, and even writes from her point of view occasionally. Also tackled in this book are issues of lies, betrayal, mistakes, forgiveness, and second chances.

Faith is quite prevalent throughout this read! Most of the main characters seek God's guidance and forgiveness for the ways they have gone wrong. Walter Doyle was an especially inspiring character, as he sacrificed for his family, chose to love the unlovable and took the high road on many occasions, just as Christ did for us. Redemption is beautifully illustrated in several of the characters' lives!

Squeal Factor
We enjoyed several romances in this story, all of which warmed our hearts! While there may not have been much to get our hearts racing, one thing these 2 chicks really appreciated was characters choosing purity, even after mistakes had been made in the relationship previously. Not easy, but all things are possible when trying to please the Lord! He is the author of love, after all!

This dramatic family saga takes the reader on a beautiful journey through the English countryside and it is downright impressive! Full of rich imagery, entertaining characters and insightful life lessons, we couldn't stop turning the pages until the end.

Find it on Amazon: Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor