Blog Book Tour | “His Baby Dilemma” (Book No.9 of the Shores of Indian Lake series) by Catherine Lanigan

Posted Wednesday, 6 December, 2017 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Book Review badge created by Jorie in Canva using Unsplash.com photography (Creative Commons Zero).

Acquired Book By: I recently started hosting with Prism Book Tours, having noticed the badge on Tressa’s blog (Wishful Endings) whilst I was visiting her blog as we would partake in the same blog tours and/or book blogosphere memes. I had to put the memes on hold these past several months (something I hope to resume in 2018) but as I enquried about hosting for Prism, I found I liked the niche of authors and stories they were featuring regularly. I am unsure how many books I’ll review for them as most are offered digitally rather than in print but this happily marks one of the blog tours where I could receive a print book for review purposes. Oft-times you’ll find Prism Book Tours alighting on my blog through the series of guest features and spotlights with notes I’ll be hosting on behalf of their authors.

I received a complimentary copy of “His Baby Dilemma” direct from the author Catherine Lanigan in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Why I wanted to read this story:

I was smitten by the premise to be honest! And, when I first saw the cover art for this novel, I hadn’t seen the series name underneath the title! I’ve been a long-time appreciator of Harlequin Romances – from a variety of their imprints which I first started to talk about on my conversation with Rachel Magee and shared a bit more recently on my Spotlight with Extract & Notes on behalf of “His Frontier Christmas Family”. If you’ve been following my blog for awhile you know my main preference is to read series in order – even if the publication order differs from the series order – however, in this case, I hadn’t realised my error until after I received the novel – finding the lovely serial list included!

One thing I do appreciate about surprising myself on the odd moon I misunderstand the sequence of series, is it sometimes paves the way for me to find a #newtomeauthor I might not have met otherwise! Therefore, because I love stories involving children & families, I was still just as delighted to curl inside this Heartwarming Romance as if it were the first in the series and not the 9th! It just means I have 8 unexpected blessings awaiting me one day – whilst I seek a way to read the rest of the interlocking stories within this series! Perhaps even, through my local library wherein they have a lovely stack full of Harlequin novels everyone in my region loves to read on a regular basis! Plus, they surprised me this December by purchasing “Christmas at Cade Ranch” which I recently spotlighted as I reviewed the prequel in the series “A Cowboy to Keep”. Suffice it to say, I’ve found a path back into reading Harlequin and I couldn’t be happier!

The author kindly sent me a bookmark with this novel – giving me her online sites, four covers of her novels and a delightful way to ‘greet’ this story as I read it! Besides – who could resist reading a story with the cut little baby on the cover holding the pages of a book? NOT ME! Laughs with mirth. I was sent a ‘larger print’ edition of this novel – which is a first for me, as I generally have only read their ‘regular or large print’ editions. The nice blessing for receiving this larger font right now is after coming out of two migraines last month and finding myself running into a third migraine this week – the extra large font allowed me to read with less issues in focusing! Also, outside of being my younger self, I’ve never had the joy of reading a book at a ‘distance’ before as the fonts being used today in publishing are growing so very tiny! Whoa. This was a lovely discovery!

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His Baby Dilemma by Catherine Lanigan

Must they always be continents apart?

Nobody expects Paris fashion designer Grace Railton to settle down in her Indiana town, least of all Mica Barzonni. Fifteen months ago, he turned to her for comfort and compassion following a farming accident that left him permanently injured. Then she returned to France and went silent on him.

Until, suddenly, Grace shows up on his doorstep with life-altering news. Mica, a father? He’s barely learned to navigate his post accident life. But this could be his chance to become the man he’s always wanted to be—the husband and father Grace and their baby son need. Now Mica just has to convince her to stay.

Pub Day: 5th December, 2017

Converse via: #Contemporary #Romance

Published by: Harlequin Heartwarming

Add to Riffle | Add to LibraryThing

The Shores of Indian Lake series:

About Catherine Lanigan

Catherine Lanigan

Catherine Lanigan is the international bestselling and award-winning author of forty published titles in both fiction and non-fiction, including the novelizations of Romancing the Stone and The Jewel of the Nile, as well as over half a dozen anthologies, including “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Living your Dream”, “Chicken Soup for the Writer’s Soul”, and more.

Ms. Lanigan’s novels have been translated into dozens of languages including German, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Portuguese, Chinese, and Japanese. Ms. Lanigan’s novels are also available in E-books on Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com, Apple Store, Mobi and Kobo. Several of her titles have been chosen for The Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Clubs. Her Vietnam war-based novel, The Christmas Star, won the Gold Medal Award Top Pick from Romantic Times Magazine and has also won Book of the Year Romance Gold Award from ForeWord Magazine as well as Book of the Year Romance from Reader’s Preference.

Lanigan is the author of a trilogy of non- fiction books regarding angelic intervention in human life: Angel Watch, Divine Nudges and Angel Tales published by HCI and Cedar Fort. Skyhorse published Lanigan’s “how-to” book on writing: Writing the Great American Romance Novel. Lanigan was tasked by the NotMYkid Foundation to write a non-fiction book addressing teen addictions. Ms. Lanigan’s first Young Adult adventure novel, The Adventures of Lillie and Zane: The Golden Flute, was published by Cedar Fort.

Currently, she has published eight novels in the Shores of Indian Lake series for Harlequin Heartwarming: Love Shadows, Heart’s Desire, A Fine Year for Love, Katia’s Promise, Fear of Falling, Sophie’s Path and Protecting the Single Mom. Family of His Own pubs July, 2016. She has recently contracted for one more in the series: His Baby Dilemma.

As a cancer survivor, Ms. Lanigan is a frequent speaker at literary functions and book conventions as well as inspiring audiences with her real stories of angelic intervention from her Angel Tales series of books.

She is an outspoken advocate for domestic violence and abuse and was honored by The National Domestic Violence Hotline in Washington, D.C. (THE EVOLVING WOMAN). She has been a guest on numerous radio programs including “Coast to Coast” and on television interview and talk show programs as well as blogs, podcasts and online radio interview programs.

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Author Notes to Readers:

I must admit, I do love the notes authors write to their readers inside novels! This doesn’t happen often – only certain publishers let authors write consistently to their authors; Harlequin & ChocLitUK being two of the ones I can think of most readily. This is a place where the author can either disclose a part of their journey with the story, their hopeful expectations for what you will find as you read their story and sometimes, you’ll find a way to connect with the author – including with an email or postal address, which I find quite lovely. This time round, what I appreciated was gathering a bit of insight into what inspired the author – as apparently, her characters & the situations they found themselves in took her by pleasant surprise as much as it will us! Isn’t that keen?

my review of his baby dilemma:

My first laugh came when Grace described Mrs Beabots! Mostly because it was such a cheeky way of making her silence about Paris sound so final! Grace was feeling nostalgic on the train heading into Indian Lake – her return prompted by a request for help she couldn’t turn down from her Aunt Louise who’d not only sponsored her in college but was a true-blue mentor in life especially since her Mum & Dad passed. The rudeness she encountered from the conductor hadn’t made me blink twice – I’ve had my fair share of issues with sorting out how to get your luggage off a train! Plus, too, I have no idea where common courtesy and kindness has gone in this world!

By the time Grace gets re-settled into her Aunt’s ice cream parlour, things start to heat up a bit regarding her schoolgirl crush arriving unexpectedly with a pumpkin delivery for her Aunt! You had to give her credit – despite vacillating between her younger self and the maturity she gained by being in Paris as a fashion designer – she held her ground well against Mica! His brooding behaviour might have been explained by his recent turn of events (health wise) but evenso, he seemed to enjoy riling her nerves and getting in a twopence of snark aimed right at Grace. She didn’t let it slide though – champion of her – but finding out the truth about him now didn’t ease the matter as it felt as if he was hiding who he was without a real purpose other than self-defeat.

Those seasonal ice creams melted my tongue in envy – this is one reason I love Autumn & Winter – you get all the lovely concoctions from pumpkin beer (which I can now attest tastes just like a lovely fresh slice of pumpkin pie!) to sea salted hot chocolate with caramel drizzled over the whipped creame! It’s such a lush foodie centric time of the year, it’s a wonder how any of us manage to make it through without having to sample everything our cravings desire! Ha!

The build-up to the whirlwind Romance between Mica and Grace was well paced however, I was a bit surprised how fast we shifted forward – to where fourteen months had suddenly gone by. The gaps were filled in from Mica’s point of view first – how he had felt abandoned by Grace, shattered in his heart and had this overwhelming anger about everything revolving between them. He was left without any resolution to the time they had spent together as all communication on her end had shut-down. This you can empathise with as how cold it sounded to be in this fire which burned between two passionate souls only lasted long enough to flicker and die within a month of being lit. A part of me wished there had been a few more scenes of Mica and Grace together in October – before the transition segued, as it felt a bit sudden. Even though Mica spoke a bit about why he missed Grace, I guess I had hoped to see their connection last a bit longer before they were separated.

Mica’s gloomy exterior had strengthened since Grace had moved back to Paris. He wasn’t the kind of bloke who handled life’s emergencies and disruptions well – if anything, they turnt him into a foul mood without hope of return. Even when good things were happening in his family, he shied away from them, refusing to even let the joy of other people’s lives touch his own heart. You sympathised with his anguish but you felt bad for him not to see how self-destructing he was becoming to his own spirit. The more he felt pushed down by life and health, the more he was allowing himself to dwell in the darkness of self-pity.

One of the hardest moments in a woman’s life is having to go back to the father of their child and admit the truth – they had a child together even if the woman had previously decided to raise the child without knowing the father. Such is the situation Grace finds herself in right now with Jules (her son) and Mica (the father). Mica, however, truly takes the cake for allowing self-loathing to overtake his heart, mind and any ounce of fatherly instinct he might have had – he lashes out at Grace in a way that paints himself in the wrong way of light rather than by simply cutting Grace to the quick (which he does expertly!). You can argue the points – of how Grace shouldn’t have kept Jules a secret but at the same time, why on earth would Mica be this livid to denounce his son and angrily walk away from him?

My favourite part of this disclosure scene is when Mica’s Mum and (future) Step-Dad came out of the house – finding the whole kit and kaboddle was out in the open and that neither party knew what to say because of the shocked silence ringing between them! Gina & Sam were the loving grandparents you’d hope to find in a story like this – realising they had a new grandson to love & cherish! Theirs was a romance of its own telling and finding out Grace had had Jules only made them both glow a bit more – they loved their extended family, where the mirth of joy reinstates itself through the children who are bourne from the sons Gina loved to raise. It as here, the tender moments continued and took Grace a bit off-guard at the same time – she was expecting her furlough in Indian Lake to go rockier than this, she never felt she deserved anything except rejection.

One of my favourite parts of the whole story though was seeing Mica’s family – from his brothers to his sister-in-laws to his Mum and her beau, all stepping forward to help Grace in her time of need. Even her renewed friendships with those she left behind in the towne were heart-warming to see blossoming back into her life. As one of her friends said quite well: it’s one thing to go it alone but without someone to lean on or others to sound off on whilst your trying to juggle everything in life, things get difficult fast! Isn’t that the truth!

Seeing Grace surrounded by support and friendship reminded me why I loved “Three Men and A Baby” as much as I did growing up! I was still a kid myself when the film first came out – it made me laugh and smile and felt warm & cosy all over because of how Mary as a baby had impacted the lives of the Bachelor’s! I should have known then I’d love reading Romances & Women’s Fiction! The same is to be said of Mica – he hasn’t quite realised his own worth or his own capacity for being a father – this is something that is jarring him to his core and he has no idea how to handle the swirl of emotions assaulting him all at once. Whereas Grace reminds me so very much of Silvia (played by Nancy Travis) – unwilling to to compromise the well-being of her baby but without knowing how to ensure he’s being looked after properly.

This novel touched on all the moments I loved in the film, but it tells it’s own story, too. There is a long road towards redemption and the grace of second chances – where each party has to come to terms with their own baggage before they can move forward. At the centre of it all is this beautiful baby boy who gives their parents a run for their money! And, rightly so! He is just the unexpected ‘bundle’ to bridge a family back together whilst finding a way to heal two hearts who never realised how fractured they had become when they stopped letting themselves feel love and embracing the blessings which comes from being loved.

On the Contemporary Heart-centred story styling of Catherine Lanigan:

The best part of all is realising Ms Lanigan did not listen to her college professor & sought out the love of her life: writing! I’ve had my fair share of criticism over the years as well but one thing all writers who are bourne to write eventually realise is they have to have confidence in their heart first and pursue a trade of interest they know is the right niche for them to be involved in. Nothing else matters as long as you own your own truth and follow the path you know is right for you to be pursuing. I am so thankful knowing someone intervened on her trajectory and helped guide her back to her first love: the art of crafting stories out of a palette of words!

I look forward to back-reading the rest of the series and seeing which characters thread through the series overall – there are generally minor and major characters who take different roles in the spotlight in series similar to this one which will make it a lovely discovery as I move through each installment! I liked how Ms Lanigan tempered the emotional reactions with the living realities of parenthood – of the struggles of relationships which are never fully realised before pregnancies and how the choices after becoming a parent can make or break the relationship in the end. She dealt with a lot of hard topics – from depression to debilitating injury to unplanned and unwed pregnancy to commitment issues in relationships. The muddiness of her characters’ lives makes the resolutions a bit sweeter but also, it shows how hard the journey is to reach a point of peace within the spirit of the person living the life with the hand they are dealt.

PS: I need to seek out her 600+ page historical thriller – that is seriously my cuppa tea!

on when readers get a surprise! ahead of posting a review:

I decided to look up her bibliography on Fantastic Fiction as I love browsing through an author’s page in order to get a better scope of their series, the order of stories and the stand-alone’s they have published as well. Lo and behold, I was not quite prepared for seeing two novels which became *major!* motion pictures starring Michael Douglas & Kathleen Turner part of her history! I quite literally have watched “Romancing the Stone” & “The Jewel of the Nile” throughout my mid-teens through my twenties! If I had the films on dvd, I would still be watching them in my thirties!

They were favourites of my Mum and she introduced them to me when she felt I was old enough to appreciate them. They became my favourites instantly and we used to binge watch them back-to-back every so often; it nearly became a yearly tradition! There was something about Joan Wilder which resonated with us both – especially as I knew I was a writer when I was watching the films and in part because of that realisation, I could identify with her struggles as a writer. It was her adventurous spirit which became a latent talent of hers which we happily celebrated alongside her – the films were simply iconic and classic all at the same time.

I never knew who wrote the novels – I am sure I should have looked up the author a lot sooner, even though I knew they were based on novels. It’s one of those things I never had the chance to do and now, here I am focusing on the latter half of the writer’s career and re-discovering a love of Harlequin. Talk about coming ‘full circle’! Wait til I tell Mum! #Blessed.

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This blog tour is courtesy of: Prism Book Tours

Prism Book Tours

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His Baby Dilemma blog tour via Prism Book ToursClick through via the badge to find out what else awaits you!

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Upcoming next will be my review of “A Priceless Find” by Kate James (which I happily featured with an Extract) and “Christmas at Cade Ranch” (was my library accepted my purchase request for this title!) which I was introduced to via inter-library loan (through my library) for the prequel of the series “A Cowboy to Keep”! I look forward to reading and bringing these reviews to Jorie Loves A Story! I was delayed in my readings of Ms James novel due to illness & migraines; whilst I’ve been eagerly awaiting the arrival of ‘Christmas at Cade Ranch’!

I look forward to continuing to host for Prism Book Tours in the New Year!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com{SOURCES: Cover art of “His Baby Dilemma”, “Love Shadows”, “Heart’s Desire”, “A Fine Year for Love”, “Katia’s Promise”, “Fear of Falling”, “Sophie’s Path”, “Protecting the Single Mom” & “Family of His Own”, the synopsis for “His Baby Dilemma”, the author’s photo and biography as well as the Prism Book Tours badge were all provided by Prism Book Tours and used with permission. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets embedded by codes provided by Twitter. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: Book Review Banner using Unsplash.com (Creative Commons Zero) Photography by Frank McKenna, Conversations with the Bookish banner and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2017.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all. "I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story) read more >> | Visit my Story Vault of Book Reviews | Policies & Review Requests | Contact Jorie
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Posted Wednesday, 6 December, 2017 by jorielov in 21st Century, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Child out of Wedlock, Contemporary Romance, Deception Before Matrimony, Family Life, Indie Author, Life Shift, Local Libraries | Research Libraries, Modern Day, Prism Book Tours, Realistic Fiction, Romance Fiction, Second Chance Love, Single Mothers, Singletons & Commitment, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Unexpected Pregnancy

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