THE DUKE I ONCE KNEW by Olivia Drake – Blog Tour Review and Giveaway

ABOUT THE BOOK

Award-winning author Olivia Drake begins her new Unlikely Duchesses series with THE DUKE I ONCE KNEW (St. Martin’s Paperbacks; December 31, 2018). With compelling characters and skillful plot twists, Drake’s latest novel will take your breath away.

Duke I Once Knew_Cover.jpgFirst love is always the sweetest…

For years, Abigail Linton devoted herself to caring for her parents and her siblings’ children. Now, eager to create a life of her own, Abby seizes upon a position as a governess on a neighboring estate. Unfortunately, her absentee employer is Maxwell Bryce, the Duke of Rothwell, the notorious rake who once broke her youthful heart. But since he hasn’t set foot on his estate for fifteen years, Abby assumes she’ll never have to lay eyes on him ever again.

Then, from out of nowhere, Max appears. He is stunned to come face to face with the girl next door he fell for years ago—before he went away, and she stopped writing to him … even though Abby swears that he is the one who left her without a word. Could it be that this spirited, witty spinster has won Max’s heart all over again—and that they may have a second chance at love?

Buy this book: https://us.macmillan.com/books/9781250174376

REVIEW

The Duke I Once Knew will delight readers who are fans of historical romance novels that are light, entertaining, and simply about two people falling in love. There’s no deep angst, dark deadly secrets, or hardline stance of any kind. Just good story-telling. Sometimes that’s what I’m looking for. And it’s all right.

Abby and Max reunite after fifteen years and the return of their love for each other is utterly believable and quite obviously inevitable. The forces that are trying to keep them apart (misunderstanding about the lost letters, Lady Elise, Max’s poor example of a father) are addressed one by one and in a timely manner.

I love reading an older heroine in Abby. There are so few of them in historical romance that when I find one, I gravitate towards it right away. It was fine for me to read teenagers when I was younger, but not when I’m middle-aged and can’t relate. I also love her taking control of her own life and not letting herself be pushed around anymore. And when she and Max had their intimacy, she proved her strong will once more.

I also loved that the characters are flawed, but still sympathetic. Especially Max.  It makes the book as close to reality as it could get.

If I have minor complaints (villainess with no redeeming factor, some repetition in the PoVs, so many named characters some of whom never got fully developed), they’re overshadowed by the positives.

 

GIVEAWAY

SMP will send a paperback copy of The Duke I Once Knew to one lucky reader who follows me on social media and who likes this post. Comment here or my Facebook Author page to let me know you’ve entered. Here are my links:

1. Amazon
2. Blog
3. BookBub
4. Books+Main
5. Facebook
6. Goodreads
7. Instagram
8. LinkedIn
9. Pinterest
10. Twitter 

I’ll draw the winner on Monday, January 7 11:59 pm CST.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Olivia DrakeOlivia Drake is the author of the Cinderella Sisterhood series (Seducing the Heiress, Never Trust a Rogue, Scandal of the Year, If the Slipper Fits, Stroke of Midnight, Abducted by the Prince, Bella and the Beast, His Wicked Wish, and The Scandalous Flirt). She has been a member of Romance Writers of America since 1981, and her novels have won the Golden Heart Award, Best Historical Romantic Suspense and Best Regency Historical from Romantic Times. She has also won the prestigious RITA award. She currently resides in Houston, TX.

Author website: http://oliviadrake.com/
Author Twitter: @OliviaDrake1
Author Facebook: Olivia-Drake

SMP Romance Twitter: @SMPRomance or @heroesnhearts
SMP Romance Website: https://heroesandheartbreakers.com/

A RUMORED FORTUNE by Joanna Davidson Politano – Book Blog Tour Review/Giveaway

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A RUMORED FORTUNE

BY

JOANNA DAVIDSON POLITANO

Genre: Historical Romance / Christian
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: July 31, 2018
Number of Pages: 416

Scroll down for Giveaway!

Synopsis
MyDDDxMQWelcome to Trevelyan Castle, home of the poorest heiress in Victorian England. Tressa Harlowe’s father kept his vast fortune hidden somewhere on his estate in the south of England and died suddenly, without telling anyone where he had concealed it.

Now Tressa and her ailing mother are left with a mansion and an immense vineyard and no money to run it. It doesn’t take long for a bevy of opportunists to flock to the estate under the guise of offering condolences. Tressa knows what they’re really up to. She’ll have to work with the rough and rusticated vineyard manager to keep the laborers content without pay and discover the key to finding her father’s fortune—before someone else finds it first.

 
Review_preview

I don’t normally read Christian Romance, finding some of them too forceful in preaching, but I made an exception for A Rumored Fortune and I did not regret it. Joanna Davidson Politano’s faith and the faith of her main characters Tressa Harlowe and Donegan Vance shone throughout the book and is essential to the growth of the hero and heroine and the development of the story.

Almost allegorical in its story-telling, A Rumored Fortune is a fascinating novel. The descriptions of the settings and characters, the dialogues, the conflicts, and the narration take the reader in a journey of intricate family relationships, class warfare, historical societal norms, viticulture, mystery, and romance.

I appreciate the deft way Ms. Politano drew her characters. They’re real and relatable. Tressa is kind, intelligent, and artistic but she has prejudices too. Donegan is forthright, but is also deceptive. Even the secondary characters are rounded out: Lucy, Tressa’s mother, Andrew, Margaret, Dr. Caine, Neville and Ellen, Mr. Prescott. They’re not caricatures and have reasons for their behaviors.

With its unpredictable twists and turns and affecting lessons in the practice of trust and acts of charity and sacrifice to demonstrate faith and love, A Rumored Fortune is a highly engaging read.  I give it four stars. ✩✩✩✩

 

PRAISE FOR A RUMORED FORTUNE:

7ZN2R6-w“Everyone loves a treasure hunt—pair it with a heroine you can’t help but love, a hero you can’t help but swoon over, and a family mystery that’ll keep you on the edge of your seat, and you end up with A Rumored Fortune. This book is a treasure in itself and one you won’t be able to put down!”—Roseanna M. White, bestselling author of the Ladies of the Manor series and Shadows Over England series

“Politano combines romance and mystery with great skill to create plot twists that will keep readers captivated until the very end.”—Publishers Weekly

“The author has done a great job, offering up a plot filled with wit, charm, action, and a lot of female strength.”—Suspense Magazine

 

book trailer

CLICK TO PURCHASE:

Baker BookHouse     Amazon     Barnes & Noble     Christianbook.com

Kobo     IndieBound     Books-A-Million

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AboutTheAuthor

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Joanna Davidson Politano is the award-winning author of Lady Jayne Disappears. She freelances for a small nonfiction publisher but spends much of her time spinning tales that capture the colorful, exquisite details in ordinary lives. She lives with her husband and their two babies in a house in the woods near Lake Michigan and shares stories that move her.

WEBSITE     FACEBOOK     TWITTER

AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE     GOODREADS

 

—————————————

GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!

GRAND PRIZE: Copy of A Rumored Fortune + Novel Teas (box of 25 tea bags) + $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
2ND PRIZE: Copy of A Rumored Fortune+ $10 Starbucks Gift Card
3RD PRIZE: Copy of A Rumored Fortune+ $10 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
(US ONLY)
September 11-20, 2018

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CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:

9/11/18		Notable Quotable	Story Schmoozing Book Reviews
9/12/18		Review			Momma on the Rocks
9/13/18		Author Interview	The Clueless Gent
9/14/18		Excerpt			That's What She's Reading
9/15/18		Review			StoreyBook Reviews
9/16/18		Notable Quotable	All the Ups and Downs
9/17/18		Character Interview	Missus Gonzo
9/18/18		Review			Tangled in Text
9/19/18		Author Top Five		Kelly Well Read
9/20/18		Review			Carpe Diem Chronicles

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THAT ONE MOMENT by Patty Wiseman – Book Blog Tour/Character Interview/Giveaway

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THAT ONE MOMENT

by

PATTY WISEMAN

Genre: Fiction / Romantic Suspense
Date of Publication: May 8, 2017
Number of Pages: 258

Scroll down for Giveaway!

 

Synopsis

Cover hi res That One MomentRicki Sheridan traveled a long way to seek refuge at Wolf Den’s Lodge high in the mountains after a devastating betrayal. Heartbroken, she signed up for a survivalist backpacking trip to live off the land and forget.
An injury on the first day puts her in the capable hands of the handsome trail boss, Kory Littleton. The attraction is instant, mutual, and terrifying. She trusted her emotions once and vowed never to make the same mistake again. Kory’s heart, trampled and bruised, is unprepared to ever love again, until his unexpected reaction to Ricki reveals some things are worth taking a chance on. When evil finds its way back into Ricki’s world, their fragile bond is tested, forcing them to face their greatest fear: can a wounded heart ever trust anew? Betrayal. Desire. Revenge. Which one prevails?

CLICK TO PURCHASE

AMAZON
BARNES & NOBLE
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PATTY WISEMAN WEBSITE
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Praise for That One Moment:

Patty Wiseman, as well as anyone and better than most, sure knows how to write the three basic ingredients of a page-turning and unforgettable novel: mystery, suspense, and romance. — Caleb & Linda Pirtle ~ Here Comes a Mystery

“It was pure perfection!” — Jessa, Amazon Reviewer

“Author Patty Wiseman does a good job of injecting so much action into just the first two pages that I had high expectations for this story. And That One Moment does not disappoint.” — Natasha Jackson for Readers’ Favorite

 

character interview

AN INTERVIEW WITH THE VILLAIN OF THAT ONE MOMENT

By Patty Wiseman

So…they told me to interview the antagonist of this novel. That’s why I’m here. Your name is Russ Desmond, correct?

You already knew that, or you wouldn’t be here.

Sorry Mr. Desmond, just trying to find a starting point here. You were a detective in Dallas before all the crazy happened. Is that right?

That’s right. And a darn good one.

How did you end up in this situation, Russ? May I call you Russ?

You can call me Detective. As far as how I got here, well, it’s Ricki’s fault.

I don’t quite understand, Detective. You stalked her. And if memory serves, you cheated on her. She was through with you.

I don’t call what happened cheating. Men stray occasionally. It’s their nature. I loved Ricki. Nothing was gonna change that. She’s my woman.

But, Detective, Ricki didn’t feel that way. She went to great lengths to rid herself of you.

Ricki misinterpreted what she saw. If she’d just given me time to explain, it wouldn’t have ended this way.

In my notes, it says, the woman was Ricki’s best friend. That’s kind of low isn’t it, Mr. Desmond?

Look, Leila’s a good kid, but nothing I am interested in. Ricki, well, she’s intelligent, beautiful, exciting. I wanted some information from Leila. That was the easiest way to get it. She couldn’t resist.

You believe your good looks and status give you the right to take what you want? Didn’t you realize it would devastate Ricki?

I didn’t plan on getting caught. But Ricki wouldn’t give me time to explain. And then she ran off. I wasn’t about to leave it that way. Ricki is mine.

I’m sorry, Russ, but my time is up. I must say, you don’t seem very remorseful over what happened.

Why should I be? It was innocent. I’ll get her back. Just you wait and see.

 

AboutTheAuthor

Patty's head shotAward Winning Author Patty Wiseman is a native of the Seattle, Washington area and attended The Wesleyan College in Bartlesville Oklahoma. Northeast Texas is home now, along with her husband Ron. She is the president of East Texas Writer’s Association, a Lifetime Member of the Worldwide Who’s Who for Professional Women (and named VIP for 2013), and a member of the Northeast Texas Writer’s Organization, East Texas Writer’s Guild, and Texas Association of Authors.

WEBSITE   FACEBOOK   TWITTER   GOODREADS   INSTAGRAM   PINTEREST   GOOGLE+

—————————————

GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!

TWO SIGNED PRINT COPIES, TWO eBOOK COPIES
(US ONLY)
August 14-23, 2018

Giveaway That One Moment

 

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:

8/14/18		Book Trailer		Texas Book Lover
8/14/18		Excerpt			The Clueless Gent
8/15/18		Review			Reading by Moonlight
8/16/18		Character Interview	The Page Unbound
8/16/18		Author Interview	Margie's Must Reads
8/17/18		Review			StoreyBook Reviews
8/18/18		Review			That's What She's Reading
8/18/18		Excerpt			All the Ups and Downs
8/19/18		BONUS Review		Hall Ways Blog
8/19/18		Author Interview	Books and Broomsticks
8/20/18		Review			A Page Before Bedtime
8/20/18		Review			Chapter Break Book Blog
8/21/18		Scrapbook Page		Story Schmoozing Book Reviews
8/22/18		Review			Dressed to Read
8/23/18		Character Interview	Carpe Diem Chronicles
8/23/18		Review			The Love of a Bibliophile

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BREATHLESS by Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan – Review and Giveaway

 

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SUMMARY

In Breathless, bestselling authors Celeste Bradley and Susan Donovan will sweep you away—across continents and centuries, combining the best of all worlds in one unforgettable romantic saga.

She was “the Swan.” London’s premiere courtesan. Men want to be with her. Women loathe her success and yet admire her beauty, her riches, her independence. But when the jealous wife of her lover moves to have the Swan banished from her home on the high seas, she winds up crashed against Spain’s rocky coast with no shoes, no clothes—and no name. Taken in by a tortured, sensuous man known as The Artist, the Swan comes to know the woman she wants to be—her artist’s siren.

When Art Professor Brenna Anderson is in danger of losing her post at Harvard, the rule-following, prim professor is at a loss of how to salvage the shreds of her life. But when a new painting in the mysterious Siren collection is discovered in a dusty old house in France, Brenna does the unthinkable—hops on a plane to uncover the identity of the beautiful, enigmatic woman who is the subject of the paintings.

There’s just one hitch—the frustrating, irritating, bold and beautiful art hunter Fitch Wilder is also looking for the Siren. He’s been a thorn in Brenna’s professional side for years, but when their individual quests lead them to team up despite being enemies, a whole new sumptuous world of art and culture opens up for the two of them. And with it, they enter a realm of passion and love…

Info:
St. Martin’s Griffin
Pub date: 06/12/2018
ISBN: 9781250008060
384 Pages

Buy Links:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
IndieBound
Powells

 

REVIEW

A mix of contemporary romance and historical fiction, Breathless is an incredibly well-written book. The jumps between present and past are done seamlessly. Clever use of varying POVs (dual 3rd person for present and singular first person for the past) to make one time period distinct from the other.

The characterization and growth of The Swan/Siren and Fitch and Brenna were excellent. As was the keen sense of place. I was transported to every place in the book: to Paris, Boston, London, the ship, Castell de la Cala, and especially to Barcelona. The authors’ use of different languages was particularly well done. They added to the authenticity of the setting.

Enemies-to-lovers is my favorite trope and the contemporary part delivered on this. I loved Fitch and Brenna’s electric chemistry and I enjoyed their reluctant fall into love. Here’s one of my favorite quotes:

“You’re brilliant and funny. You never give up. You’re a hot mess of complexity with a dab of crazy and that intrigues me.”

There’s humor and pathos, heartbreak and triumph, mystery and adventure. Breathless is really an entertaining book. Even if I weren’t given an ARC by SMP through NetGalley, I’d buy it for myself. And buy the book before this too: Unbound.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Celeste Bradley

CELESTE BRADLEY is the New York Times bestselling author of the Runaway Brides, Heiress Brides, Liar’s Club, and Royal Four series. Her novel Fallen was nominated for a RITA in 2002. “When you are overendowed with imagination and underendowed with punctuality, become a writer.” Years of dreaming on the job paid off when Celeste Bradley quit the mainstream in 1999 and started writing historical romance. “Handsome heroes beat out cranky customers every time!” Bradley lives in New Mexico with her family, her desert garden and so many pets the house sometimes feels like an ark.

Social Links:
Celeste Bradley Author Website
Twitter: @CelesteBradley_

 

susan donovanSUSAN DONOVAN’s novels have won accolades for being witty, sexy, and entertaining. A former newspaper reporter with journalism degrees from Northwestern University, Susan is a New York Times and USA Today bestseller whose novels have been translated into dozens of languages. Susan is a two-time RITA Award finalist, and her novel Take a Chance on Me was named Best Contemporary Romance of 2003 by RT Book Reviews Magazine. She lives in New Mexico with her family and assorted dogs.

Social Links:
Susan Donovan Author Website
Twitter: @SDonovanAuthor
Facebook: @SusanDonovanFanPage

 

GIVEAWAY

I’m giving away a paperback copy of BREATHLESS to one of my US readers. For chances to win:

  1. Like my Facebook author page Maida Malby, this post, and comment (4 points)
  2. Follow @maida_malby on Twitter and Like my tweet about this review and giveaway (1 point)
  3. Follow me on BookBub (2 points)
  4. Follow me on Goodreads (1 point)
  5. Follow Carpe Diem Chronicles on Instagram (1 point)
  6. Follow me on Amazon (1 point)

 

HARMON GENERAL Cover Reveal

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Number  of  Pages:

HARMON GENERAL

Misfits and Millionaires #2

by

KIMBERLY FISH

Genre: Historical Fiction / WWII / Spies

Expected Date of Publication: June 16, 2018

Number of Pages: 330

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Harmon General is book two in the WWII historical fiction series entitled Misfits and Millionaires—set in Longview, Texas. The novel picks up about two months after the story line in The Big Inch ended.

Familiar characters and locations get a shot of adrenaline from the biological hazard espionage going on at the U.S. Army’s new medical hospital treating diseased and wounded soldiers—a 156-acre pop campus created as part of a master plan to place U.S. Army hospitals around Texas specializing in long-term wound care for WWII soldiers. The Office of Strategic Services has one of its best agents in place as a nurse at Harmon General—Sgt. Emmie Tesco—and she’s soon up to her blood pressure cuff in intrigues at the hospital campus, particularly the mission to stop a culprit code-named “Dr. Death” who is accused of skewing the malaria test protocols being established at Harmon so that no one will notice him preparing to sell the malaria research to the enemies of the Allies. Heroes and villains circulate in Longview from the post at Harmon General, and Emmie ropes Lane Mercer into helping manage the overload of responsibilities. Readers of The Big Inch will better understand what drives Emmie Tesco and why poking at old wounds can be a messy affair. The backstory of Lane Mercer and her first husband gets a brutal airing too, and stakes grow dangerous for Lane and Zeke Hayes as the plans they’d wanted for their wedding are upended by well-meaning, Aunt Edith.

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PRESENTING THE COVER

OF HARMON GENERAL

 

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PRAISE FOR HARMON GENERAL:

“The war that changed the world brought the world to East Texas through Harmon General, a significant US Army hospital that treated thousands of wounded soldiers in Longview. In Harmon General, we meet again Lane Mercer, a World War II heroine, and we enjoy again how the drama of her secret service to the nation and her complicated personal relationships pull us into the vast impact of the world war.” –Dale Lunsford, Ph.D., President, LeTourneau University

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Author Pic FishKimberly Fish started writing professionally with the birth of her second child and the purchase of a home computer. Having found this dubious outlet, she then entered and won The Writer’s League of Texas manuscript contest which fed her on-going fascination with story crafting. She has since published in magazines, newspapers, and online formats and in January 2017, released the first novel in the Misfits and Millionaires series set during the World War II years in Longview, Texas—The Big Inch. Her second book, Comfort Plans, was published later that same year. She lives with her family in East Texas.

WEBSITE   INSTAGRAM   PINTEREST   FACEBOOK

TWITTER  GOODREADS   AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

HARMON GENERAL

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Happy Book Birthday, Bonnie & Clyde #2: DAM NATION

BNR Dam Nation Blitz JPG_preview

DAM NATION

BOOK RELEASE BLITZ

Bonnie and Clyde #2

by

CLARK HAYS AND KATHLEEN McFALL

Genre: Historical / Alternative History / Romance

Publisher: Pumpjack Press

Date of Publication: March 24, 2018

Number of Pages: 266

CLICK TO PURCHASE

cover HI RES Dam Nation_preview

Bonnie and Clyde: Defending the working class from a river of greed.

The year is 1935 and the Great Depression has America in a death grip of poverty, unemployment and starvation. But the New Deal is rekindling hope, with federally funded infrastructure projects, like Hoover Dam, putting folks back to work. So, why is someone trying to blow it up? That’s what Bonnie and Clyde set out to uncover in the novel Dam Nation by Clark Hays and Kathleen McFall, the second book in a provocative speculative fiction series that re-imagines the outlaws’ lives.

“A rollicking good read!” –Midwest Book Review

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EXCERPT

WHAT IF?

The Texas Ranger looked up at Sal, a mixture of fear, respect and revulsion in his eyes. “Let’s pretend for a minute it wasn’t Bonnie and Clyde in that ambush,” he said. “Why? Why would it be different people in that car?”“How would I know?” Sal asked. “I work for the government. I trust that the government has my best interests at heart. I follow orders. You didn’t.”“I won’t be quiet about this unless you can tell me why anyone would try to save them outlaws.”“If they were still alive, I would tell you that everyone has a purpose in life, and perhaps they are fulfilling theirs. And if they were still alive, I would tell you that you don’t use good dogs to guard the junkyard, you use the meanest goddamn dogs you can get a collar around.”

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Authors Hays_Mcfall Photo_previewABOUT THE AUTHORS: Clark and Kathleen wrote their first book together in 1999 as a test for marriage. They passed. Dam Nation is their sixth co-authored book.

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BONNIE AND CLYDE: DAM NATION

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FIGHTING IRISH by Katy Regnery – Book Birthday Review/Giveaway

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BOOK INFORMATION:

FIGHTING IRISH, The Summerhaven Trio #1

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Blueberry Lane series comes a new trio of romances featuring the Haven triplets!

Rory Haven and Brittany Manion knew one another as children…
…but it’s been a long time since their childhood summers at Summerhaven.

The Havens weren’t the children who attended exclusive Summerhaven Camp in Center Sandwich, New Hampshire. They were the children of the owners, expected to “pull their weight” and absolutely forbidden to fraternize with the paying guests. But that didn’t keep Rory from having a quiet, unrequited crush on gorgeous, popular, insanely-rich, Brittany Manion for four tortuous summers.

When all-grown-up, recently-engaged Brittany books the off-season summer camp for her upcoming spring wedding, she immediately recognizes Rory as the scorching-hot boy who wouldn’t give her the time of day. Meanwhile, Rory, who senses that Brittany’s nuptials are less about Mr. Right and more about Mr. Right Now, launches the fight of his life to win the heart of the girl he’s always wanted.

 

AVAILABLE FROM:

~Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07B2NL7G8
~Apple iBooks: https://apple.co/2GDStBm
~Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/2DVvdRW
~Kobo: http://bit.ly/2DT6n54

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~THE SUMMERHAVEN TRIO~
Book #1: Fighting Irish (Rory and Brittany)
Book #2: Smiling Irish (Tierney and Burr)
Book #3: Loving Irish (Ian and Hallie)

MY REVIEW: 

Fighting Irish is a sweet story of second-chance love amidst class differences and a history of betrayals suffered by the heroine Brittany Manion. Rory Haven is an ideal hero–responsible, kind, understanding, and patient. He’s had a crush on Brittany since they were fourteen, but his obedience to his mother’s edict of non-fraternization with their summer camp’s attendees won out over his adolescent feelings. Given another chance with the woman of his dreams, he took it, but he waited until she was ready and had developed feelings for him in return.

I liked that this was slow-burn and Rory and Brittany did not get together until they’ve declared their love for one another. I absolutely adore the highlighting of love for family in this novel. It’s Brittany’s dream and the happy ever after she deserves after all she’s been through. Rory’s bond with his siblings was celebrated without having it take over the book.

One mark of a good book for me is when I had a hard time putting it down. Fighting Irish is one such book, that’s why I’m giving it five stars.

For a chance to win a copy of Fighting Irish, check out my Carpe Diem Chronicles by Maida Malby on Facebook.