Monthly Favorites: October

mll blog

Welcome to my monthly wrap up! I used to do a wrap up of things happening on the blog, but this time I want to share my favorite things from around the web, including author news and favorite blog posts from my friends! This may vary between a few items some months and several things that deserve highlighting other months, depending on what’s caught my eye. Enjoy!

# books read this month: 3
favorite book of the month: A Portrait of Emily Price by Katherine Reay
# books acquired: 3
# books added to TBR: 9

My blogger friends had some great posts this month:

Courtney of The Green Mockingbird wrote a beautiful review of The Lady and the Lionheart.

Jamie of Books and Beverages wrote about the important subject of diversity in Christian fiction.

On Silver Petticoat Review, Rissi wrote about 10 memorable meet-cutes in film. I especially agree with The Age of Adaline and Something Borrowed. I adore those meet-cutes!

I love cover reveals, and Rel always puts together the best posts about new and upcoming fiction. Here’s the Bethany House cover reveals for mid-2017.

Author news is always exciting to hear:

Hillary Manton Lodge’s next book, Jane of Austin, is officially on Goodreads with a summary! And according to Hillary, the hero is going to be super swoon-worthy!

The cover for Becky Wade’s next book, True to You, has been 
revealed! So very excited for this one. I’ve only shared the peek at the cover, so click through to see the full cover and admire this new beauty.

Becky Wade and Katie Ganshert are starting up the next round of Pinterest War. They always do the cutest crafts and have a very lively competition. It’s all about who gets to wear that tiara in the end!

In other news around the web:

In Gilmore Girls news, Netflix released the first official picture of Jess. I’m so ready to watch this!

And the trailer for Gilmore Girls has arrived!! I may have watched this too many times and it is delightful. I CAN NOT WAIT FOR NOVEMBER 25!!

13 Going on 30 (or as I like to call it, a modern classic) is being adapted for the stage. I would be so excited to see this movie as a musical!!

Some non-internet favorites:

I splurged on the new Urban Decay Naked Ultimate Basics palette and it is the best eyeshadow palette I’ve ever had.

Have you heard of bullet journaling? I never was very interested in it before, but I think it finally clicked for me this month. I don’t follow the guidelines exactly, but it’s really about making the system work for you, so I like it!

Looking Ahead: November Releases

These books are what I’m most excited about this coming month! I’m currently finishing Katherine Reay’s novel, and it will definitely be on the best of 2016 list.

How was you October? What did you read?

 

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Review: Where Two Hearts Meet by Liz Johnson

Where Two Hearts Meet by Liz Johnson
Prince Edward Island Dreams, Book 2
Revell, 2016

“There was only one thing better than the smell of freshly baked cinnamon rolls in the morning. The taste of freshly baked cinnamon rolls in the morning.”

And with that scrumptious opening line, I was hooked on this novel.

The setting is so unique in this series. Prince Edward Island conjures up memories of watching the Anne of Green Gables movies, so I have an instant connection with this place and a smile on my lips when I open the pages of this book. PEI is a character all on its own and I was quickly transported into the story.

All the food and pastries in this novel made me hungry all the time! I wanted the treats Caden made so badly that I could almost taste them. I even made a batch of brownies to curb my sweet tooth while reading this book.

Speaking of the food, the kitchen scenes are where my favorite parts of the story happen. Caden and Adam meet every morning over coffee and cinnamon buns, where their initially flimsy relationship begins to deepen and develop as they share their stories little by little.

My favorite part of this novel was Caden. If ever there was a fictional character I would get along with, this girl would be her.  I could identify so much with her character, from her love of food (I love to bake sweets), to her Broadway music always blaring in the kitchen, down to her insecurities about belonging and being wanted. I found her character both insecure and brave, which sounds contradicting, but really, aren’t we all made up of insecurities and bravery? How many of us struggle with one aspect of our lives and yet in others, we feel confident? Caden knows what she’s doing in the kitchen, but other areas of life are more difficult for her to face, which makes her feel like a real person.

All in all, I enjoyed this book so very much, and I am now anticipating the third book of the series. I am very curious where the next book will take us and what PEI and the Red Door Inn has in store for readers.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.*

Review: A Lady Unrivaled by Roseanna M White

A Lady Unrivaled is the third and final installment in the Ladies of the Manor series, written by Roseanna M. White. I have enjoyed this series, and had intended to link my reviews of the previous books here for you, but I was surprised to find I never wrote reviews of them! So, first I will share a tidbit of my thoughts on the first books in the series.

In The Lost Heiress, we meet Brook and her best friend, Justin. She goes through a rough journey, from thinking she was one person, and discovering she had a family she was unaware of. I adored her fiery spirit and the passion she had for her family and friends. [5 stars]

The Reluctant Duchess has the prettiest cover in the bunch. This one follows Rowena and Brice, who are trapped into a shotgun wedding thanks to a scheming father. Brice was a great leading man, but the middle portion of this novel had me frustrated when these two just wouldn’t communicate! But, again, Brice was perfect. [3.5 stars]

A Lady Unrivaled by Roseanna M. White
Ladies of the Manor, Book 3
Bethany House, 2016

I really enjoyed this book. Ella and Cayton take us on the final leg of this journey of the Fire Eyes and the trouble they have caused in the lives of everyone involved with them.

About the Fire Eyes and the curse surrounding them: This series follows the lives of the people who are in possession of the Fire Eyes and those who want to be in possession of them, no matter the cost. And I don’t think it was a curse per se. To me, it was more a look at greed and power, and how those things can overtake your life and cause pain and grief. Greed will never be satisfied, and destruction is left in its path. This plays out in the series, and I appreciated how this aspect of the series was resolved.

Back to this book in particular, Ella’s bright and happy personality were in juxtaposition to the gloomy and guarded exterior Cayton projected when he was around her. But I always enjoyed their interactions and how Ella brought a light into Cayton’s life. And I liked how Cayton loved his daughter and how much his life was about being a good father to her. And how he painted. LOVED THAT. I like when characters have a creative outlet, it just makes them more interesting.

In closing, I really appreciated the Author’s Note at the end of the book and wanted to share a few of her words here. To quote Roseanna, “I hope and pray that you, too, will see that whatever path you’re on in life, God means it to enrich your heart and soul. And that no matter how many mistakes we make, in our actions or our judgment, we can always trust His voice to lead us…so long as we know how to hear Him.”