Wild as the West Texas Wind by Jackie North

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: Soulmates across time. Two hearts that were meant to be together.

In present day, Zach takes a road trip to Trinidad to find information on a missing friend.

In 1892, Layton Blue, outlaw, longs for hearth and home even as he treasures his life of freedom.

A freak rainstorm washes Zach’s car into a ditch, sending him back to the year 1892. Searching for help, alone and on foot in the middle of the nowhere, he crosses paths with the famous Ketchum Gang. Now the gang’s prisoner, Zach’s fate is to be sold at a seedy auction for whores.

Layton is put in charge of making sure Zach does not escape, but as the chemistry between them grows, Layton finds himself wanting to help Zach.

Can Layton overcome years of being on the run? Can Zach accept help from an outlaw?

The Review

Zach is searching for his best friend Laurie trying to understand how he could have disappeared from a Dude Ranch and then sent a letter from 1892 to the present. After a freak rainstorm, Zach finds himself in 1892 face to face with an outlaw gang. Layton gets charged with keeping an eye on Zach after Zach becomes ill. The tension that had been building between the two men grows more intense as they separate from the Ketchum Gang.

The romance between Zach and Layton was warm, slow burn. And I loved every page of it. Their romance starts out simply, sharing a blanket for warmth. Then their attraction grows as Layton takes care of an ill Zach. The trouble he went through to show Zach he was different from the rest of the outlaws made me swoon (just a little). And the shaving scene – I don’t know why it does it for me, but that scene made my heart flutter. It was placed in the perfect place in the storyline.

I loved the way Zach and Layton looked out for each other. Layton helped stop Zach from being too obnoxious towards Ketchum. While Zach helped Layton see that he could have what he wished for even if he didn’t think it was possible.

North has a way with creating a setting that puts you directly into the story. It’s rich, vibrant and everything I needed for a western romance. I could feel the heart of the day and the cold desert nights. I felt like I was in the west with sand in my boots. There is attention to creating a historically accurate world, and it’s successfully done.

AND!! Holy smokes, can I just say that I love the covers to this series? They are amazing. And I want physical copies to have on my bookshelf. That’s how much I love these books, the covers and everything about them.

**Due to be released February 23, 2019 – I’ll update with a Buy Link soon!**

Christmas Lane by Amy Aislin

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Five out of Five Stars

Summary: It’s recent college graduate Zach Greenfeld’s favorite time of the year and he’s just received a temporary gig planning Lighthouse Bay’s Christmas parade. Not only does it speak to his penchant for organization, it also puts him face to face on a daily basis with his unrequited crush–Holland Stone. But his new job starts off in disaster when the most important float–Santa’s sleigh–gets damaged.

Holland needs to win the Lighthouse Bay Christmas parade float competition in order to grow his new dollhouse-making business. The prize is an article in a major city newspaper, and nothing beats free advertising. Except, eager to help the adorable parade organizer, he volunteers to help fix Santa’s sleigh, leaving no time to work on his own float, and putting his prize at risk.

Damaged floats, snowstorms, and a last-minute parade emergency force Zach and Holland closer than ever. All they need is a little bit of Christmas magic to help them realize they belong together.

The Review

I would like to start this review by giving it heart eyes and happy snuggles. It’s exactly what I needed to get me into the holiday spirit.

Zach is a recent college graduate and he’s ready to find a job that doesn’t include working at his family’s restaurant with his sister as his boss. Holland is fifteen years older, has bounced from job to job trying to figure out what he wants to do with his life and is attracted to man who he once taught in primary school. They are thrust together when Zach gets put in charge of the town Christmas parade and Holland is building a float and eventually more.

Holland was kind. In a way you wouldn’t expect people to be any more. As their relationship progressed, Holland talked to Zach about what he wanted and needed. Zach is portrayed as a possibly Ace, but more like demisexual (In my opinion). And Holland respects that. Eventually they progress to more. Their kisses were pretty swoon worthy. There isn’t any on-screen sex scenes, but it worked for their story. They didn’t need explicit scenes.

Zach was a cautious when it came to Holland. How could he, of all people, be what Holland is looking for in a partner? Especially, when Holland dated men like Mika and Clark in the past. Zach has his quirks and Holland lets him do his thing. I loved that. He didn’t tease Zach for having multiple calendars or having certain ways he did things. They supported each other. I found it adorable that Holland took care of Zach in the little ways he could.

Through all the issues that crop up like ex-boyfriends, roofs caving in, endless car trouble, and figuring Christmas out, Zach and Holland make it through it all.

Another plus, the secondary characters were just as engaging as Zach and Holland were. I have secret hopes that Dev and Clark might get their story told next. This is definitely a holiday read that I will be revisiting yearly.

 

Pre-Order/Buy your copy here

Breaking In by Ashton Cade

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary:

Ryan:  After my divorce to Barb, my life has been just me, my little boy and my job. Some people might call me overprotective, but as the Sheriff of Umberland, I know a lot more than they do about what can happen when you let down your guard. When my high school best friend Christian comes to visit, sure, I remember experimenting with him as teenagers, but what I can’t ignore is the fierce attraction that still burns between us.
What’s even more, Christian makes me feel safe and protected—something I do for everyone else.
I’ve never been attracted to a man since Christian… but as soon as I lay my eyes on him, I don’t think I’ll be attracted to anyone else ever again.

Christian:

I knew I was gay forever, it seems. But my first love was the one that stuck with me all these years: Ryan Rainier. He’s a big deal in the police department now, and as a man in uniform, he’s every bit as gorgeous as he was in those young years.
But Ryan’s straight, right? So why does he keep looking at me that way, with hunger in his eyes?
Am I just seeing what I want to see? And can I risk losing a lifelong friend for a shot at love?

 

 

The Review

Ryan is a small town cop how wants the best for his son, Troy. He isn’t actively searching for romance. His ex-wife burned him pretty badly when she cheated and left him for a terrible excuse for a man (he’s a jerk in the politest terms possible).When his former best friend, Christian, is back in town and the attraction they shared as teenagers reignites. They hadn’t gotten past teenage fumbling but it’s clear that they both want much more this go around.

I enjoyed book two in this series a lot more than book one. That’s a rarity for me but there was something about Ryan, his son Troy, and Christian that compelled me to keep reading and rooting for them. I loved how sure Ryan was about Christian. The chemistry between the two of them, oh boy, it was juicy.

Their relationship started to rebuild while Christian slept on the couch and progressed from there. Christian also gave Troy time and attention. Ryan and Troy were a package deal and Christian fell in love with them both. He was so sweet to Troy. He was kind, understanding and willing to step back if it meant Ryan would be happy.

I swear I got heart eyes way too many times while reading this but Ryan going to look for Christian? Oh I melted into a puddle of happiness. I absolutely loved Ryan and Christian and that epilogue? *wistful sigh*

This is a definite must read and one I’ll probably revisit when I need a feel-good, pick me up.

Get your copy here

Honey from the Lion by Jackie North

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Five out of Five Stars!!!

The Summary: Soulmates across time. A love that was meant to be.

In present day, Laurie, tired of corporate life, takes a much-needed vacation at Farthingdale Dude Ranch.

The very first night a freak blizzard combined with a powerful meteor shower takes Laurie back to the year 1891. When he wakes up in a snowbank, his only refuge is an isolated cabin inhabited by the gruff, grouchy John Henton, who only wants to be left alone. His sense of duty prevails, however, and he takes Laurie under his care, teaching him how to survive on the wild frontier.

As winter approaches, Laurie’s normal fun-loving manner make it difficult for him to connect with John, but in spite of John’s old-fashioned ways, the chemistry between them grows.

Sparks fly as the blizzard rages outside the cabin. Can two men from different worlds and different times find happiness together?

The Review

Wow. That’s all I can say. Wow.  

Laurie is going on vacation at a Dude Ranch to get the genuine experience of a roughing it as a cowboy. After a night around the campfire, Laurie listens intently to the story of John and his Little Red fox that became his constant companion before disappearing just as quickly as it appeared. That story broke my heart before I realized the significance of it. And then it shattered my heart to pieces.

Laurie falls asleep as comfortable as a guy could get in a sleeping bag under the stars, but he wakes up in the middle of a blizzard, desperate to find shelter. He finds a shack and hopes for someone who would be kind enough to let him stay. He finds John Henton.

John Henton has his own demons. He wants some place quiet and away from people since his time in the Indian Wars. I fell in love with him from the second he took Laurie in. He took care of Laurie as much as Laurie brought him happiness.

This was definitely a slow burn. I never knew that teaching someone to take care of a home, or going out for the basic necessities could increase the chemistry and tension between to characters but it did here. John had a way of looking after Laurie that made my heart melt. He may have been a bit gruff, quiet and focused, but when he was around Laurie he glowed.

There were so many sweet moments between the pair of them.  There was a moment I was so upset and heartbroken I was near tears. Then I ended up crying like a baby because John, damn, John has a way with words when he says them. I’m sure someone else has probably quoted this but,

“I would lie to keep you. If they asked me, do you love him, I would lie and say no just so I could keep you.”

I want to gush even more about this but if I do I’m afraid that I’ll give all the amazing pieces of this story away. And I don’t want to do that. You need to experience this book yourself. It was beautifully written and it’s one that I will revisit time and time again. It left me feeling so hopeful and just happy.

GO GET THIS NOW!

A Ferry of Bones & Gold by Hailey Turner

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary:  When the gods come calling, you don’t get to say no.

Patrick Collins is three years into a career as a special agent for the Supernatural Operations Agency when the gods come calling to collect a soul debt he owes them. An immortal has gone missing in New York City and bodies are showing up in the wake of demon-led ritual killings that Patrick recognizes all too easily from his nightmares.

Unable to walk away, Patrick finds himself once again facing off against mercenary magic users belonging to the Dominion Sect. Standing his ground alone has never been a winning option in Patrick’s experience, but it’s been years since he’s had a partner he could trust.

Looking for allies in all the wrong places, Patrick discovers the Dominion Sect’s next target is the same werewolf the Fates themselves have thrown into his path. Patrick has been inexplicably attracted to the man from their first meeting, but desire has no place in war. That doesn’t stop Patrick from wanting what he shouldn’t have. Jonothon de Vere is gorgeous, dangerous, and nothing but trouble—to the case, to the fight against every hell, and ultimately, to Patrick’s heart and soul.

In the end, all debts must be paid, and Patrick can only do what he does best—cheat death.

The Review

This is the first time I’ve read anything by Hailey Turner. Obviously, I have been missing out because I need more! Especially, in concern to Patrick and Jono. Jeez, those two fellas, I just fell in love with them.  I was enchanted with the entire world. There were Gods, mages, sorcerers, werewolves, werecreatures, seers, vampires, demons, and more.

Patrick is a red-headed, stressed out and annoyed mage who has been through hell and back. He gets sent to New York to help investigate a series of extremely violent crimes, where supernatural forces have been involved.

Jono is a werewolf from London, who bartends at a local supernatural bar. But there’s a bit more to him than everyone knows.  He is one hell of a guy. He’s very protective, strong and smart.

Both Patrick and Jono’s lives are influenced by the Gods. Patrick has a debt to pay and Jono, I have a feeling we’ll be learning more about how the Gods influence him in future books. They worked together, not just the police but the supernatural community to stop any catastrophic disaster from hitting New York City from Ethan Greene who will do whatever it takes to become a God.

I’ve been on a paranormal, procedural, romance kick. This book spoiled me rotten. Not only was there a case that needed to be solved but it all played into something much bigger than those cases.  The action of the scenes were vivid, fast paced, and had my heart pumping. I had to know what was going on with Patrick and Jono and the rest of the crew. I NEEDED TO KNOW.

The romance between Patrick and Jono wasn’t the main focus. There were a couple of intense scenes and you could feel the buzz of attraction throughout the novel.  I feel like I’m about to keyboard smash from how much I enjoyed these two men. They were both strong, honest, and willing to fight for each other. Like I said, I loved them and all the other characters.

So the question is, should you read this? OMG YES. I’m actually going to check out the other books Hailey Turner has penned. Because damn, this book was good.

 

Purchase Here

Fake Out by Eden Finley

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: 

Maddox 
The reason I rarely go home is three simple words: I’m a liar.
When the pressure to marry my childhood sweetheart became too much, I told her I was gay and then fled to New York like my ass was on fire.
Now, five years later and after a drunken encounter, I find myself invited to her wedding. And I have to bring my boyfriend—the boyfriend who doesn’t exist because I’m straight.
At least, I think I am. Meeting the guy I’m bribing to be my boyfriend for the weekend makes me question everything about myself.

Damon 
When my sister asks me to pretend to be some straight guy’s boyfriend, my automatic response is to say no. It’s because of guys like him people don’t believe me when I tell them I’m gay.
But Maddox has something I need.
After an injury that cost me my baseball career, I’m trying to leave my playing days behind and focus on being the best sports agent I can be. Forty-eight hours with my sister’s best friend in exchange for a meeting with a possible client. I can do this.
I just wish he wasn’t so hot. Or that he didn’t kiss like he means it.
Wait … why is the straight guy kissing me?

 

The Review

There is a special place in my heart for any fake boyfriend storyline. I absolutely LOVE the fake boyfriend trope. So that’s what initially drew me in but what piqued my interest massively was the fact that Maddox told his girlfriend he was gay so he wouldn’t have to stay in relationship with her. THEN the entire town learns about it and Maddox just rolls with it.

Damon is a lot more than he expected in his fake boyfriend for the weekend.  He is easy to get along with, sarcastically funny, and he’s extremely attractive. The chemistry between the two of them steadily grows but once they kiss, *fans self* their chemistry explodes in all the best ways.

What was different about this fake boyfriend storyline was the fact that Damon, who was an openly gay athlete, is the one who hesitated. He didn’t want to be another straight guy’s experiment. Ya’ll, my heart broke a little bit for him. Then when Eric and that storyline showed up? I wanted to shake him. That’s how angry he made me.

The way Damon and Maddox interacted and communicated with each other, it was more than romantic. It was what any successful relationship needs in order to succeed. They worked with each other and genuinely cared for each other. Damon was patient with Maddox, even when Maddox may have been in a little bit of a rush.

I really enjoyed my first book by Eden Finley. I’ve already got Fake Boyfriend #2 on my Kindle and I’m ready to read it.

 

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The Shape of You by Georgia Beers

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: Personal trainer Rebecca McCall is furious when her coworker is sidelined and she’s forced to teach the “Be Your Best Bride” class. As if being a size two for your wedding photos is all exercise is good for. Could the whole thing get more vain and sexist? The class is full of preening, giggling Bridezillas, but one woman stands out. The one who confesses she’s only there because her fiancée signed her up. Who does that to someone they care about? And why can’t Rebecca take her eyes off her?

Spencer Thompson is a second-guesser. After making the worst mistake of her life, she’s happy to abdicate responsibility and let other people make her decisions for her. She’s always felt a little bit too soft, a little bit too curvy in all the wrong places. Her fiancée apparently agrees because she signed Spencer up for a class at the gym. Terrified by the online profile of the instructor, the epitome of Zero Body Fat, Spencer is relieved to find someone new, and realistic looking, leading the class. Except the instructor seems to hate her and Spencer has no idea why.

When a perfectly innocent post workout smoothie leads to an earth shattering kiss, Rebecca wonders if she’s been wrong all along, and Spencer is challenged to make another decision that could change her life forever.

The Review

Georgia Beers has definitely become one of my favorite F/F authors. Any time I get the opportunity to read any of her books, I jump at it.

I was just as excited about the “Be Your Best Bride” as Spencer and Rebecca were. It just sounded like the easy set up for mean girl, queen bee situation. But Rebecca was the most surprising character. As a trainer I thought she was going to be hardcore, angry fitness instructor. Instead, she was much different. She looked at fitness as, feeling your best and not only worth doing to become a skinny model type.

Spencer, well I could relate to a little too well. I do have to say I have a little more bite than Spencer did. If my wife to be signed me up for a twelve week fitness class, I would have been livid.  Then we would have had a talk and probably would have no longer been wives to be. Because if you don’t like the way I look now? Twelve weeks in a fitness class isn’t going to change it. Instead, Spencer was very passive and just took things. I have a feeling she felt like she didn’t deserve the happiness she was chasing. She just settled.

The main issue of this book, which I knew of from the get-go was the fact that there would probably be infidelity at some point. Spencer is engaged while she’s attracted to her class instructor. Spencer and Rebecca’s chemistry was intense. They were a bit antagonistic towards each other before they figured out what was really going on between them. I think the fact that Spencer was so not in love with Marti and Marti was such a workaholic jerk, that I was rooting for Spencer and Rebecca to get together. They had the passion that soon a to be married couple should have. They communicated with each other, they worked together and then had explosive sex. If you aren’t excited by your partner, or can’t remember the last time you were intimate with them, you may need to stop, think and have a sit down with them.

Rebecca brought Spencer out of her shell and challenged her to be the person she had once been. Then Spencer brought gentleness out of Rebecca that kind of made my heart melt. Just a little.

I like how there is always a healthy dose of reality in this. Spencer’s friends and family weren’t all happy about what she had done, but they did encourage her to think her wants/needs through in order to decide what she truly wanted. Then Spencer and Rebecca didn’t immediately get together. Time passed. Spencer had to figure out who she was.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and was excited to see how everything turned out.

Get your copy here

Not so Vanilla by Morgan Noel

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: Bartholomew’s life is perfect. He’s got a job he loves, he’s in a committed relationship with his loving boyfriend who appreciates his neurotic tendencies, social anxiety, and general awkwardness. It’s not ‘white-picket-fence-and-Golden-Retriever’-perfect, but their nice little apartment in the city and the cat they rescued from the shelter come pretty close.
The domestic bliss gets disturbed when his boyfriend Kyle brings a very hot friend from high school into their sanctuary, making both of them wonder if perhaps ‘perfect’ is as relative as good sex.

This book is a sticky and delicious MMM romance that is hot and a little dirty with a surprise for anyone with a sweet tooth.

 

The Review

I had the opportunity to listen to the Audiobook that was narrated by Piers Ryman. And it was probably the best audio experience I’ve ever had. Piers is British so that kind of made it all kinds of awesome for an American listener.  There was no hesitation during certain scenes and his voice flowed smoothly. Anytime Mew had stuttering, cut off thoughts, it felt right. You could hear the different characters with different inflections of his voice but it wasn’t like he changed his voice. He just spoke softer, or more quickly, or there was a lilt for another character. Hands down, I loved listening to him and plan on snagging anything else he narrates.

That being said, I will give you a few disclaimers. DO NOT LISTEN TO THIS AT WORK! I’m notorious for listening/writing inappropriate things at work, in a car filled with family members, in class. DON’T DO IT! ABORT! Also, you will never, ever, look at donuts in the same way again. I’m pretty sure I blushed the first time I saw donuts at the bakery.

I loved Mew (Bartholomew). He was so awkward, adorable and curious that I couldn’t help but relate to him a bit. I have that stuttering, social anxiety that he had. And I love my cats. Kyle also, so supportive of Mew. Even if he wanted something more you could tell that he was willing to go slow for Mew because he loved him.

Adam *fans self* oh boy. Temptation on legs would be an apt descriptor for him. It was interesting to see him lightly push at Mew’s boundaries but never go over the line. He stopped. There was teasing from Adam and Kyle but it was never too much. Sometimes I have a problem with the teasing and pushing boundaries but this didn’t make me uncomfortable. It felt like a playful push and pull kind of relationship.

This was definitely explicit. But it was a good explicit? It wasn’t overly done where you have the characters cursing every other word or weird phrases like cum gutters. This was well written sex between two/three agreeable parties. Plush I’m pretty sure I was red as a tomato while listening to this at work, but I couldn’t stop myself from listening.  I also gave my coworkers a play by play and they were dying. So that made it so much fun.

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Badlands by Morgan Brice

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: Medium and clairvoyant Simon Kincaide owns a Myrtle Beach boardwalk shop where he runs ghost tours, holds séances, and offers private psychic readings, making a fresh start after his abilities cost him his lover and his job as a folklore professor. Jaded cop Vic D’Amato saw something supernatural he couldn’t explain during a shootout several years ago in Pittsburgh and relocated to Myrtle Beach to leave the past behind, still skeptical about the paranormal. But when the search for a serial killer hits a dead end, Vic battles his skepticism to ask Simon for help. As the body count rises, Simon’s involvement makes him a target, and a suspect. But Simon can’t say no, even if it costs him his life and heart.

The Review

There’s more than meets the eye when it comes to Simon Kincaide and the employees who work along boardwalk at Myrtle Beach. Some of them have have touches of psychic abilities and they are being targeted by a serial killer dubbed, The Slitter. By chance homicide cop, Vic D’Amato stops in Simon Kincaide’s shop to see if maybe a psychic might give them some type of lead to work off of.

As it turns out, Simon was about to give the cops something to work off of and throughout he continues to get information from ghosts of the victims and bursts of feelings from the killer himself.

The characters had me enthralled with this book. Once I started reading I didn’t want to put it down. I felt like I was on the boardwalk with how vivid the details were. Simon was extremely authentic. He had been through so much before moving to Myrtle Beach and once he landed he didn’t harden himself. He remained authentic, honest and compassionate. He doesn’t push critics to believe him. He just does what it true to himself. I loved that about Simon.

The attraction between the two is instantaneous and real. Even after what Vic went through previously, he still remains cautious and weary of what he can’t prove with evidence. If Vic wouldn’t have acted the way he did, if he would have just fallen into understanding and believing, I would have had a, huh? moment. But this was right.

Their relationship didn’t happen fast and I liked that. I like a bit of a slow burn romance between to characters trying to find their footing together, especially with a serial killer on the loose. I think with their pasts, having someone who understood the unusual and didn’t force the need for ‘normal’ really helped keep them together. There were parts I knew were hard for Vic. And I hurt for both him and Simon.

This was the first book I’ve ready by Morgan Brice. I plan to read Witchbane as soon as I get the chance and to look at all the books written under her other name, Gail Z. Martin.

 

Go buy this now! You won’t regret it. 

Skating Through by Jennifer Crosgove

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Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: There are two things Ben Lewis has convinced himself he can never have at the same time: playing hockey and being openly gay. Hockey is looking to be his only choice. Until now. Being captain of the team and starting his senior year of high school is a lot to handle. Throw in a budding friendship with his crush, Marcus, and Ben is faced with deciding if he’s brave enough to take the next step.

Fortunately, courage can come from unexpected places. His BFF Ryan, new friends, and a voice from the past are great assists to his determination to be true to himself and keep playing the game he loves, but will they be enough?

The Review

Skating Through combines some of my favorite things to read: hockey, young adult, and first times. It was sweet, a bit emotional in parts and extremely fun to read.

Ben Lewis is a high school senior and he’s the captain of the hockey team. He isn’t your average jock either. He’s shy, quiet, closeted and has one best friend Ryan encourages him to get out of his shell. In all manners, like going to parties, finally talking to the boy he’s had a crush on since freshman year and finding a little bit of happy that’s outside of hockey.

As Ben slowly starts to find himself, he starts to open up to more possibilities of how his life can be if he were to come out of the closest. Everything happened in stages. It isn’t like a switch that flipped and everyone knew. He told the people he cared about the most and went from there. There were times I could see how anxious and afraid he was and then I could feel his relief. They were adorable together and every date like scenario made me root more for them.

There was a bit of a side story happening too. Ben found letters from WWII in his Gran’s attic and turns out there was a little bit of a love story there as well. There is so much of me that wishes there were dual storylines happening the entire span of the book. I wanted there to be more letters, to see the war time romance as well. I was extremely intrigued and now I’m looking for more books like that.

I enjoyed being able to see Ben’s journey and how everything would unfold. I read this book in one sitting, about two hours. I couldn’t put it down once I started reading. I loved this and now I want to read everything by Cosgrove.

Get your copy here!