Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Review: Forever Sheltered by Deanna Roy

Title: Forever Sheltered
Author: Deanna Roy
Genre: New Adult Romance
Series: Forever Series #3
Publication Date: 23rd July 2014
Pages: 300
Book Source: From author for review

Synopsis: Tina would rather sew up her girl parts with dental floss than go on a second date with a man. She's been dumped enough to know not to get attached.

But when Dr. Darion Marks comes into her art therapy room to ask a favor for a special patient, Tina recognizes the haunted look he buries beneath his stoic professionalism. So rather than be forced to ditch the handsome doctor after a single night, she decides not to date him at all.

So how exactly DO they end up half-naked in Surgical Suite B?

Dr. Darion has a lot to hide. His baby sister is the only family he has left, and he’s not leaving her treatment to some incompetent hack.

But now he’s breaking every hospital rule imaginable. He lied about his sister so he can manage her care, and now he’s banging the art therapy teacher between patient rounds like a fraternity boy at a keg party.

Nobody believes this can end well, not Tina’s friend Corabelle, who is overcoming a tragic history much like Tina’s, or even pink-haired Jenny, who thinks sex with strangers is good for your metabolism.

But Dr. Darion and Tina have one thing going for them – a fierce passion for each other that just might obliterate all their doubts, and solve all their problems.

Forever Sheltered includes many favorite characters from Forever Innocent and Forever Loved, as well as the much-anticipated wedding of Gavin and Corabelle.

Karen's Thoughts:                 
Many of us have experienced miscarriage or suffered infant loss or know someone who has. Even if it has not touched your life directly, as a mother it's difficult to imagine how on earth you can pick yourself up after such a loss. After years of fertility issues I am very blessed to have given birth to four healthy babies. Whilst I was pregnant with my fourth child, one of my closest and dearest friends was also expecting her fourth child. We were very excited to be having babies within months of each other. Sadly her baby boy was stillborn. I can still remember where I was and what I was doing when my husband called me to tell me. He wasn’t able to come home to tell me in person, but he also didn’t want me to hear the news from anyone else, or God forbid if someone posted about it on social media. Many people expected that I wouldn’t be able to face my friend and some even suggested it was heartless of me to attend the funeral as it would be a real slap in the face for my friend to be reminded that I still had a baby to look forward to and she no longer did. I remember how grateful she was that I didn’t avoid her as many friends did. She didn’t blame them, they had no idea how to deal with this tragedy. I recall her proudly showing me the photos that were taken in the hospital and how her baby boy looked absolutely perfect, just like he was sleeping. My friend is now a passionate supporter of SANDS here in Australia and is helping others walk the path that she has walked herself.

Forever Sheltered is the third book in the Forever series and can be read as a stand alone but I highly recommend that you read the entire series and Gavin and Corabelle’s journey after the death of their newborn son.

Forever Sheltered centers around Tina and Darion. Tina suffered infant loss herself when she was only a teenager. She’s had a troubled time dealing with her grief and has reached out to her audience, publicly speaking about suicide awareness. At the end of the second book in this series, Tina is offered a job at a hospital as an art teacher/therapist for patients with long term illness. Through this role she is able to reach out and support patients through art, but likewise I felt they reached out to her as well.

This is where Tina meets the very lovely Dr Darion Marks and what a special young Doctor he is. Tina recognizes a hidden pain in Darion. Tina has stayed well away from relationships after being abandoned by the father of her baby when she needed support the most. She does her best to keep her distance from Darion, but strong chemistry keeps pulling them together. Darion is walking through a web of lies trying to protect the person he loves the most and I found myself desperate to see both Tina and Darion break down walls and be each other’s support.

Deanna Roy has become one of my favourite authors. I was deeply touched by Deanna’s dedications in the book to families affected by cancer.  I applaud Deanna for reaching out to readers in such a personal way.

Guest review by Karen

Connect with Deanna Roy
Forever Sheltered (The Forever Series, #3)



Monday, September 15, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


A weekly event hosted by Sheila from Book Journey to discuss your reading week ~ the books you've read and those you plan on reading in the coming week. I love this meme, it helps me stay on track ... well, most of the time. Thanks Sheila! 

A long week with a wry neck ... what a stupid name for something causing so much pain and just a few tears. So grateful to be on the mend now.  


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#bookblogwalkers update #35: Felicia's Book Blog Walkers: love that so many of my friends are doing Felicia's challenge to move and get healthy. If you also have a fitbit and want to add me, let me know :) 

Even though I didn't do too much exercise-walking last week I did get lots of steps in as it was more painful sitting and laying down than it was being upright. I walked to appointments as I would have been a danger in the car, not being able to turn my head lol

Mon: 45 min walk with Bella (11,653) 
Tue: 20 min walk with Bella to Vet (9089 steps)
Wed: (10,159 steps)
Thurs: walk to appointment (8047 steps)
Fri: (10,060 steps) 
Sat: rest (3075 steps)
Sun: (7062 steps)

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Giveways: 

Wonderful giveaway on Sherryl Caulfield's Blog - author of the beautiful Iceberg Trilogy. And it's INTERNATIONAL ... go, go, go.

Many of you know how much I loved Seldom Come By (1st book in the trilogy) a 5 star favourite earlier this year and I've just finished Come What May ... oh my heart! Review on Friday and goodies :)



Enter here 

  1. A personally autographed and dedicated copy of Seldom Come By
  2. A personally autographed and dedicated copy of Come What May
  3. A Paullina Simons autographed copy of her novel, The Bronze Horseman
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Reviews & Posts: (click on title)

MAYBE SOMEDAY by Colleen Hoover ~ my first CoHo, won't be my last. 4.5 stars

LYREBIRD HILL by Anna Romer ~ exquisite, a 5 star favourite this year

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Finished last week:

You don't want to miss these reviews and giveaways .... AWESOMENESS

BITTER GREENS by Kate Forsyth ~ for book tour. review & giveaway Thurs

COME WHAT MAY by Sherryl Caulfield (The Iceberg Trilogy #2) ~ review & giveaway Fri

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This Week's Reading List: 


OUTBACK GHOST by Rachael Johns (Bunyip Bay #3)

LARGER THAN LIFE by Jodi Picoult (novella prequel to Leaving Time)

THE BREWER'S TALE by Karen Brooks

THE TIME OF SINGING by Elizabeth Chadwick (William Marshall #4) ~ audiobook 50% done

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Reviews Coming: 

FOREVER SHELTERED by Deanna Roy ~ (The Forever Series #3) ~ guest review by Karen Tue. Review so touching it made me cry! 

ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE by Randy Susan Meyers ~ intense, emotional, loved it!

THE DARKEST HOUR by Barbara Erskine (audiobook) ~ great, love Barbara Erskine




Friday, September 12, 2014

Review: Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover

Title: Maybe Someday
Author: Colleen Hoover
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: 18th March 2014
Pages: 367
Book Source: Own purchase

Synopsis: At twenty-two years old, aspiring musician Sydney Blake has a great life: She’s in college, working a steady job, in love with her wonderful boyfriend, Hunter, and rooming with her good friend, Tori. But everything changes when she discovers Hunter cheating on her with Tori—and she is left trying to decide what to do next.

Sydney becomes captivated by her mysterious neighbor, Ridge Lawson. She can’t take her eyes off him or stop listening to the daily guitar playing he does out on his balcony. She can feel the harmony and vibrations in his music. And there’s something about Sydney that Ridge can’t ignore, either: He seems to have finally found his muse. When their inevitable encounter happens, they soon find themselves needing each other in more ways than one…

My Thoughts:
Thanks to my friend Karen (who guest reviews here) for raving about Maybe Someday and cheering when I finally picked up my first Colleen Hoover book. I'm so happy I did. Colleen Hoover's writing is smart and funny and sweet and refreshing and she's big on music.

I have a thing for stories with music.

Music has always played an important part in my life, it's my warm place and safe harbour, it connects people, it comforts, inspires and uplifts. Music plays an integral part in Maybe Someday, it's a character in itself and I LOVE that in a book. The unique thing about the music in Maybe Someday is, Sydney and Ridge write the lyrics, they connect through music, it's their way of communicating, expressing themselves, the music moves the story forward. 

I loved what was happening between Sydney and Ridge, their dynamic, the humour, awkwardness, the sweet heart-skippy feeling it gave me. BUT it didn't sit well that Ridge was emotionally cheating on his girlfriend and I didn't buy into his bullshit justifications. It felt real, I might not have liked it (that's just me) but Colleen Hoover kept it real. 

Maybe Someday is sensitive, emotional and surprisingly refreshing. I wish I could tell you why it is so refreshing but that would spoil things so just trust me and read it :)



I think I might dive into Ugly Love next. All you die-hard Colleen Hoover fans out there ... any other recommendations?


Connect with Colleen Hoover

Maybe Someday Soundtrack
Music by: Griffin Peterson

Purchase Links:
Maybe Someday



Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Review: Lyrebird Hill by Anna Romer

Title: Lyrebird Hill
Author: Anna Romer
Genre: Historical-Contemporary Fiction/Mystery
Publication Date: 1st September 2014
Pages: 416
Book Source: Simon & Schuster Au & NetGalley 

Synopsis: Ruby Cardel has the semblance of a normal life – a loving boyfriend, a fulfilling career – but in one terrible moment, her life unravels. The discovery that the death of her sister, Jamie, was not an accident makes her question all she’s known about herself and her past.

Travelling back home to Lyrebird Hill, Ruby begins to remember the year that has been forever blocked in her memory . . . Snatches of her childhood with beautiful Jamie, and Ruby’s only friendship with the boy from the next property, a troubled foster kid.

Then Ruby uncovers a cache of ancient letters from a long-lost relative, Brenna Magavin, written from her cell in a Tasmanian gaol where she is imprisoned for murder. As she reads, Ruby discovers that her family line is littered with tragedy and violence.

Slowly, the gaps in Ruby’s memory come to her. And as she pieces together the shards of truth, what she finally discovers will shock her to the core – about what happened to Jamie that fateful day, and how she died.

A thrilling tale about family secrets and trusting yourself...

My Thoughts:
Anna Romer earned herself a fan with her debut Thornwood House and with Lyrebird Hill she cements her position as a voice to be reckoned with in Australian fiction ... an exceptionally talented writer.

I adored every minute of Lyrebird Hill. For me Anna Romer is synonymous with lyrical, atmospheric writing; of such haunting and addictive quality you savour every word. Once again it's a seamless blending of contemporary and historical narrative, Ruby 2013 and Brenna 1898 ... past and present intertwine with dark secrets and pain. 

Ruby Cardel returns to her childhood home Lyrebird Hill to unlock memories and the mystery of her sister's death. With the discovery of Brenna's diary and letters, Romer weaves the mesmerising story of two women seeking truth, generations and 115 years apart.

Lyrebird Hill never feels like a story being told. Some of our shameful history and treatment of aborigines made me cry with sorrow and outrage. The Australian landscape is so lushly described, I was immersed, my senses evoked ... eucalypts, camp fires, the scent of bush flowers, birdsong, Brenna's connection with the land and the aboriginal people tangible. 

I rarely read books again. For its exquisite beauty Lyrebird Hill is one I will.







Lyrebird Hill


Connect with Anna Romer





Monday, September 08, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


A weekly event hosted by Sheila from Book Journey to discuss your reading week ~ the books you've read and those you plan on reading in the coming week. I love this meme, it helps me stay on track ... well, most of the time. Thanks Sheila! 

What a busy, busy week. It started with my skin check (many of you know my mother passed away from early stage melanoma on the top of her head) and I had a very anxious 24 hour wait for results on what specialist thought may have been a pink melanoma. Thankfully I got the all clear but once again it's timely for me to remind everyone of the importance of regular skin checks!!  

Monday to Friday in Chinchilla and lots of special time with my granddaughter.  

love the little cutiepie (9 weeks)

Not much happened on my blog while I was away (I'm disappointed blog fairies didn't write a few reviews for me ... slackers!!) but I'll catch up on reviews and blog visits this week, I promise. HA

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Reviews & Posts: (click on title)

BOOK BLOG WALKERS: Weekly Check-In

THE GLASS KITCHEN by Linda Francis Lee ~ squeee I'm lovin' on this one, 5 star fave!! Weekend Cooking Post.

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Finished last week:

ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE by Randy Susan Meyers ~ intense, emotional, loved it! 

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This Week's Reading List: 3 talented Australian authors this week


BITTER GREENS by Kate Forsyth ~ for book tour, loving it

COME WHAT MAY by Sherryl Caulfield (The Iceberg Trilogy #2) ~ so excited for this one

OUTBACK GHOST by Rachael Johns (Bunyip Bay #3)

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Reviews Coming: 

LYREBIRD HILL by Anna Romer ~ brilliant!! Review Tue

THE DARKEST HOUR by Barbara Erskine (audiobook) ~ great, love Barbara Erskine

MAYBE SOMEDAY by Colleen Hoover ~ so good. 


Sunday, September 07, 2014

Book Blog Walkers: Weekly Check-In :)

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#bookblogwalkers update #34: Felicia's Book Blog Walkers: love that so many of my friends are doing Felicia's challenge to move and get healthy. If you also have a fitbit and want to add me, let me know :) 

A visit to spend time with my granddaughter and then back home for the weekend. Found a new pretty spot to explore on the creek of the walking track we often take. No jogging this week ... I hurt my back and neck lifting something earlier in the week so just trying to stay mobile without upping the pain. 

Mon: 4 hours in the car but still managed some steps (5470 steps)
Tue: walking/pacing with my granddaughter (8100 steps)
Wed: walking with my granddaughter (8100 steps)
Thurs: more walking with my granddaughter (8300 steps)
Fri:  4 hours in the car but packing and unpacking helped (6000 steps)
Sat: 45 min walk with Bella (7500 steps)
Sun: 45 min walk with Bella (8500 steps)




Monday, September 01, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?


A weekly event hosted by Sheila from Book Journey to discuss your reading week ~ the books you've read and those you plan on reading in the coming week. I love this meme, it helps me stay on track ... well, most of the time. Thanks Sheila! 

Another month down, who can believe it ... 1st day of Spring here! A busy but good week and a big weekend with my son and family back for a few days. Saturday night saw both sons at home for the first time since Christmas, was so nice seeing Callum with his little niece. After appointments today, I'll be spending a few days in Chinchilla; more time with my precious granddaughter ... can't wait! 

Mia 2 months old 

 Uncle Cal & Mia

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#bookblogwalkers update #33: Felicia's Book Blog Walkers: August is being hosted by Jen @ That's What I'm Talking About. If you have a fitbit and want to add me, let me know :) 

Mon: 45 min walk with Bella (10,060 steps)
Tue: 30 min walk with Bella (8400 steps)
Wed: no walk (6640 steps)
Thurs: 30 min walk with Bella and gardening (9700 steps)
Fri:  20 min walk (8040 steps)
Sat: Babysitting my granddaughter (5400 steps)
Sun: 40 min walk with Bella (10, 100 steps)

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Reviews & Posts: (click on title)

THE GLASS KITCHEN by Linda Francis Lee ~ squeee I'm lovin' on this one, 5 star fave!! Weekend Cooking Post.

THE ESCAPE ARTIST by Diane Chamberlain (audiobook) ~ good

SHATTER by Erin McCarthy (True Believers #4) ~ guest review by Karen, 4.5 stars

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Finished last week:

LYREBIRD HILL by Anna Romer ~ brilliant!! Another favourite

THE DARKEST HOUR by Barbara Erskine (audiobook) ~ great, love Barbara Erskine

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This Week's Reading List: 


ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE by Randy Susan Meyers ~ it's good so far

BITTER GREENS by Kate Forsyth ~ for book tour

OUTBACK GHOST by Rachael Johns (Bunyip Bay #3)

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Reviews Coming: 

MAYBE SOMEDAY by Colleen Hoover ~ loved it!!