Category: Book Spotlight

Book Spotlight | “Of Darkness and Light” (Soli Hansen Mysteries, Book One) by Heidi Eljarbo

Posted Tuesday, 2 June, 2020 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

Similar to why I had to change my post yesterday, I was just as excited to host an interview for this blog tour when I first signed on to host the author and her story – however, whilst I was in the throes of co-hosting #WyrdAndWonder (see also Post) for our 3rd Year of celebrating the fantastical throughout May, I was also succumbing to wicked horrid seasonal allergies which truly upturnt my world for the month. Somehow I managed to forget to finish my questions for the author in time for my tour stop and requested to change it to a spotlight as this is an author I’ve been intrigued about reading for quite a long while now.

You might remember my announcements for #WitchAThon this past March?

I had planned to read & review “Catching A Witch” by this author during the readathon for #WitchyReads – however, this was the month my parents both ended up in the ER and my reading life took a bit of a hiatus along with losing a bit of interest in blogging. Sometimes the crises of life can divert our attention and we have to hug close to family and faith to get through them. It took me until #WyrdAndWonder to finally find the joy again in both reading & blogging – as the event helped reset my focus and renewed my joy of diving into stories. Until Wyrd And Wonder – I’ve been struggling since last Autumn to have that same kind of joyfulness I experienced whilst reading “Christmas Once Again”.

You’ll be finding my #WitchyReads are coming to Jorie Loves A Story this June – as I’m co-hosting a new event with Armed with a Book (@_armedwithabook) which focuses on our #ReviewReads (more details soon!).

Today, I want to talk about this new Historical Mystery series and why this series caught my attention as much as Ms Eljarbo’s “Catching A Witch”.

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Book Spotlight | “Of Darkness and Light” (Soli Hansen Mysteries, Book One) by Heidi EljarboOf Darkness and Light
by Heidi Eljarbo

In this first book of a new historical mystery series, a young art historian faces a tough choice in German-occupied Norway.

Oslo, 1944. Soli Hansen’s passion for art history is and always has been a way of life for her. While she spends her days working in an art shop, WWII is taking its toll on everyone. Apprehensive of the consequences, Soli avoids becoming entangled in the war resistance efforts. She closes her eyes in hopes the enemy will retreat and leave her beautiful country for good.

But when a woman is found dead in the alley alongside the art shop and a painting from the last auction goes missing, Soli is thrown into the thickest of the fray involving both Nazi art theft and the Norwegian resistance.

Once Soli finds her courage, there’s no turning back. Her personal life is turned upside-down with danger, lies, spying, and an incredible discovery.

In this dual timeline novel, Heidi Eljarbo paints a vivid picture of what people are willing to do in desperate times. With unforgettable characters and rich historical details, Of Darkness and Light will keep the reader mesmerized until the last satisfying page.

Perfect for fans of Kate Morton, Lucinda Riley, Katherine Neville, and Kate Mosse.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9798639681653

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller Suspense, War Drama


on 2nd May, 2020

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Converse via: #HistFic or #HistNov
+ #HistoricalThriller and #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Heidi Eljarbo

Heidi Eljarbo

Heidi Eljarbo is the bestselling author of Catching a Witch. She grew up in a home filled with books and artwork and she never truly imagined she would do anything other than write and paint. She studied art, languages, and history, all of which have come in handy when working as an author, magazine journalist, and painter.

After living in Canada, six US states, Japan, Switzerland, and Austria, Heidi now calls Norway home. She and her husband have a total of nine children, thirteen grandchildren–so far–in addition to a bouncy Wheaten Terrier.

Their favorite retreat is a mountain cabin, where they hike in the summertime and ski the vast, white terrain during winter. Heidi’s favorites are family, God’s beautiful nature, and the word whimsical.

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Posted Tuesday, 2 June, 2020 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Book Spotlight, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

Book Spotlight | “Masquerade at Middlecrest Abbey” by Abigail Wilson

Posted Monday, 1 June, 2020 by jorielov , , 1 Comment

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I was wicked eager to host an interview for this blog tour when I first signed on to host the author and her story – however, whilst I was in the throes of co-hosting #WyrdAndWonder (see also Post) for our 3rd Year of celebrating the fantastical throughout May, I was also succumbing to wicked horrid seasonal allergies which truly upturnt my world for the month. Somehow I managed to forget to finish my questions for the author in time for my tour stop and requested to change it to a spotlight as I truly wanted to talk about why this story leapt out to me to be read!

I have a sweet passion of joy reading INSPY Literature – as throughout my blog – you’ll find reviews for INSPY Contemporary Romance, INSPY Contemporary Realistic Fiction, INSPY Historical Romance and/or INSPY Historical Fiction – whereas I have this addiction to reading Suspense novels by INSPY novelists who are being published via the imprint Love Inspired Suspense! This is something I enjoy reading in tandem with my Mum – as getting the chance to read novels and talk about them shortly afterwards with someone who equally appreciates the same kind of stories as you do is pure blissitude.

When it comes to reading INSPY Historical Fiction & Romance – it began in my childhood when I first became a hybrid reader of both mainstream & INSPY literature – Judith Pella and Lois Gladys Leppard were two of my ‘first’ beloved authors in this vein of interest. They were writing the stories and series I was excited to find a a young girl who was thriving on their wonderfully realistic worlds and characters of whom were their own heroines.

The Regency is a timescape I love re-visiting – it is one of those cosy comforting eras of joy for me as a reader second only to the Victorian. I’ve been seeking out stories set in both time periods since I was nine years old and read my first Regency Christmas Romance anthology! It was a turning point for me because it not only showed me period Historical Fiction but it also showed how wicked intriguing a Historical Romance (ie. #HistRom) could be where you find yourself caught inside the fever of what a Historical Romance can give you during the Regency. From the balls to the pretense of courtship – there is a lot to delight inside of a Regency Rom!

Thus, having this background of readerly enjoyment – when I saw this announcement for the blog tour featuring “Masquerade at Middlecrest Abbey” – I truly squealled with delight as I definitely knew I wanted to be reading this lovely new release! When I realised print copies were on hold due to the virus and the limitations in shipping books during the more intense months of lockdowns and isolated quarantines in our country, I opted for an interview and now a featured extract. I’ll definitely be reading this novel – but for now I simply want to help get the word out about its release!

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Book Spotlight | “Masquerade at Middlecrest Abbey” by Abigail WilsonMasquerade at Middlecrest Abbey
by Abigail Wilson

In this new Regency romance, Elizabeth knows she must protect her heart from the charm of her new husband, Lord Torrington. She is not, however, prepared to protect her life.

When the widowed Lord Torrington agreed to spy for the crown, he never planned to impersonate a highwayman, let alone rob the wrong carriage. Stranded on the road with an unconscious young woman, he is forced to propose marriage to protect his identity and her reputation, as well as his dangerous mission.

Trapped not only by her duty to her country but also by her limited options as an unwed mother, Miss Elizabeth Cantrell and her infant son are whisked away to Middlecrest Abbey by none other than the elder brother of her son’s absent father. There she is met by Torrington’s beautiful grown daughters, a vicious murderer, and an urgent hunt for the missing intelligence that could turn the war with France. Meanwhile she must convince everyone that her marriage is a genuine love match if her new husband has any hope of uncovering the enemy.

Determined to keep her son’s true identity a secret, Elizabeth will need to remain one step ahead of her fragile heart, her uncertain future, and the relentless fiend bent on her new family’s ruin.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9780785233077

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Romance


Published by Thomas Nelson

on 26th May, 2020

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Converse via: #HistFic or #HistNov
+ #MasqueradeAtMiddlecrestAbbey and #HFVBTBlogTours

Available Formats: Trade paperback and Ebook

About Abigail Wilson

Abigail Wilson

Abigail Wilson combines her passion for Regency England with intrigue and adventure to pen historical mysteries with a heart. A registered nurse, chai tea addict, and mother of two crazy kids, Abigail fills her spare time hiking the national parks, attending her daughter’s gymnastic meets, and curling up with a great book. In 2017, Abigail won WisRWA’s Fab Five contest and in 2016, ACFW’s First Impressions contest as well as placing as a 2017 finalist in the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense.

She is a cum laude graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and currently lives in Dripping Springs, Texas, with her husband and children.

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Posted Monday, 1 June, 2020 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Book | Novel Extract, Book Spotlight, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

A #HarlequinHeartwarming Book Spotlight | “Alaskan Dreams” (Northern Lights: Book Six) by Beth Carpenter

Posted Monday, 11 May, 2020 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: I started hosting with Prism Book Tours at the end of [2017], having noticed the badge on Tressa’s blog (Wishful Endings) whilst I was visiting as we would partake in the same blog tours and/or book blogosphere memes. I had to put the memes on hold for several months (until I started to resume them (with Top Ten Tuesday) in January 2018). When I enquiried about hosting for Prism, I found I liked the niche of authors and stories they were featuring regularly. This is how I came to love discovering the Harlequin Heartwarming authors & series as much as it has been an honour to regularly request INSPY stories and authors. Whenever I host for Prism, I know I am in for an uplifting read and a journey into the stories which give me a lot of joy to find in my readerly queue of #nextreads. It is an honour to be a part of their team of book bloggers.

I will be receiving a complimentary copy of “Alaskan Dreams” direct from the author Beth Carpenter in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comWhy I loved the Northern Lights series coming into it at Book Five:

I liked how Carpenter connected a thread of faith into her Contemporary Sweet Romance – not all the authors in the Heartwarming line do this directly, though some I feel imply it which makes my heart happy. I liked how it applied in the context of this story – how being a doctor and/or a medic has a certain measure of faith associated with the careers. You can go only so far on your own merits before you have to recognise there is point where you have to lean on something outside of yourself in order to be the better medical professional. Not everything is understood through medicine and science – yet, how Carpenter broaches these topics within her narrative align well with two characters who haven’t yet decided what their final thoughts are on life, their careers or how they might still be attracted to one another!

When we first see Volta and Scott together – it is like a random snowstorm burrowing people in a house together who would otherwise not expect to be confined in the same place with each other. Volta has mixed feelings – which felt natural given their history and how she has become a widow in his absence and a single Mum. Her responsibilities are different now than they were before they had met even if there is still a bit of an open door to their hearts, it is interesting watching how Carpenter is going to reveal the story as we hug close to both of them as they ride out the volcanic ash which has grounded their plane.

As the ash storm passed over, what hadn’t released the tension of the hour is the friction between Volta and Scott. For her part, I think Volta was running a bit scared – she didn’t share her feelings very well – she came across as being guarded and reserved. I could see why – she had a lot she went through in her life in the short time they had been apart but evenso, when she was round Scott, you could tell she felt an ease about him. I almost thought perhaps she was frustrated with herself to find that she not only still have feelings for Scott but by reuniting with him, she felt a renewal of hope for her future. When it came to Scott, I sensed a lot of personal anguish in him – especially of the guilt of not establishing a life for himself. He had his career but how many people are happy to thrive on a career without a home base and family?

I could understand the angst of Emma (Volta’s daughter) – when you want to ride horses, it is quite amazing how difficult it is to find places that are not just affordable but are of the benefit of the rider not just the horse. Once you’re smitten by a horse, it is rather difficult to stop thinking about them and how companionable they are to be around. I had hoped she might find a way to have either a horse or at least regular lessons before she became an adult.

I loved when Carpenter re-shifted back into the planes and took us into the air to be with the air ambulance crews. It gave more foundation to the roles these people have IRL but also, how their shifts can run longer than your realise as Volta had a 24 hour rotation facing her when she agreed to be Scott’s liaison. This was another smart move I felt in the story itself – how Scott, was wanting to bring changes to the Alaskan methodology of approaching prenatal care in the state, he needed someone who understood how to interact with the locals. Someone who could give them assurances he couldn’t as an outsider and that someone felt perfect to be Volta even for me! I liked how he fuelled his desires to help others into plausible situations where he could yield the most good and be of the most help. This plan had to change the prenatal care of Alaska felt like the kind of forward-thinking leadership needed in rural medical inefficient areas need in order to find a gateway into a future where they are more self-sufficient.

You know when your watching a movie you’ve settled into about two people who can’t quite put their lives together but they seem to be making enroads towards finding common ground? Even though things continue to go astray and their lives seem to be going down different routes and avenues; there is something drawing them back together? This novel is a lot like that kind of movie! The more you dig into their lives – you see how dedicated they are to their jobs but what good is a job if it doesn’t allow you to live?

This is a critical question Carpenter wants her readers to chew on because it is the main thesis behind the story itself. Wells, at least one of them anyway! She wants you to see past their sense of honour and duty; past the point where they were unselfish in serving others who needed them and started to take stock of their own lives for a change. To sort out what Scott and Volta needed most in their lives – whether that meant making changes or being open to the change within themselves, Carpenter lets you see what they decide as you tag along for their journey.

Carpenter puts you front and centre on the action within her medically focused Contemporary (Sweet) Romance wherein you get to see first-hand what first responders go through in Alaska when their patients live rather remotely. Even the first case she presented in the novel wasn’t routine as it was a woman who had hypertension and it was causing issues with her pregnancy – I did give a bit of a pause of thought as to what would have happened if Volta and Scott hadn’t been there at that particular moment in order to intervene on the woman’s behalf. A credit to what Carpenter had already established about how due to how lean the state is on medical facilities and how the support staff in the more rural areas were limited to aides; you can see how Alaska can become a medically adverse state in which to live.

I definitely will be seeking out the rest of this Northern Lights series as I liked the pacing and the presentation of how Carpenter implores us to want to know more about this world she’s created for us to find! She hugs us so close to the hearts of her characters, it is easy to feel what they’re feeling and live a period of time in their shoes rather than our own. In essence, I love that this is another small towne series focused on family, hearth, home and a wicked dollop of romance! Best of all, she gave me a new reason to venture back to Alaska and that was the icing on the cake!

-quoted from my book review for Sweet Home Alaska

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A #HarlequinHeartwarming Book Spotlight | “Alaskan Dreams” (Northern Lights: Book Six) by Beth CarpenterAlaskan Dreams
by Beth Carpenter
Source: Author via Prism Book Tours

The dream she wants

The love she found

Lauren Shepherd has traded her hectic office job for a quiet life working on an elderly friend’s farm. Risking everything to move to Alaska might just be the perfect opportunity for her—if Lauren can convince handsome and fiercely protective Patrick O’Shea that she’s not swindling his grandmother. But when financial troubles threaten her dream, Lauren and Patrick unite in a hunt for a legendary treasure…only to discover something between them more precious than gold.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781335889720

Also by this author: Sweet Home Alaska

Also in this series: Sweet Home Alaska


Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Contemporary Romance, Romance Fiction


Published by Harlequin Heartwarming

on 1st May, 2020

Format: Trade Paperback

The Northern Lights series:

The Alaskan Catch by Beth CarpenterA Gift for Santa by Beth CarpenterAlaskan Hideaway by Beth CarpenterAn Alaskan Proposal by Beth Carpenter

Sweet Home Alaska by Beth CarpenterAlaskan Dreams by Beth Carpenter

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The Alaskan Catch (book one)

A Gift for Santa (book two)

Alaskan Hideaway (book three)

An Alaskan Proposal (book four)

→ Sweet Home Alaska (book five) ← *where I began the series!

Alaskan Dreams (book six)

Published by: Harlequin Heartwarming (@HarlequinBooks) | imprint of Harlequin Books

Formats Available: Paperback* and Ebook

*Harlequin has the luxury of offering Regular, Large & Larger Print editions which I personally can attest are lovely to be reading! Especially after a migraine or when my eyes are fatigued.

Converse via: #SHATour and #HarlequinHeartwarming

About Beth Carpenter

Beth Carpenter

Once upon a time ...

when Beth Carpenter was a little girl, she read everything she could get her hands on, and entertained herself on the school bus by making up stories in her head. Not a lot has changed. She's still consuming books like M&Ms, and spends her days creating happily-ever-afters for her imaginary friends.

She lives in Alaska and Arizona with her husband and an aggressively affectionate fifty-pound lap dog. She loves to hear from readers.

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Posted Monday, 11 May, 2020 by jorielov in Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host, Book Spotlight, Contemporary Romance, Prism Book Tours, Romance Fiction

Book Spotlight | Featuring notes by Jorie and an extract from “The French Wife” by Diney Costeloe

Posted Saturday, 9 May, 2020 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I am wicked delighted to be featuring a lovely #newtomeauthor today – as I recently had the chance to select quite a few Head of Zeus and Aria Fiction novelists to be spotlighting throughout the Spring months this year – wherein I was rather delighted finding so many keenly interesting stories to start seeking out to read! These are stories which dance between Romance & Women’s Fiction – from Contemporary to Historical settings. Being an avid reader of these genres I couldn’t miss the chance to bring the JOY of discovering these lovely authors to my readers of Jorie Loves A Story!

It is my intention to start requesting these novels via my local library if they are not available in audio formats via Scribd. At the moment my library is experiencing an unprecedented sabbatical on requests which put me in a bit of a pickle as I’m an active patron whose constantly requesting purchases every month – which is why I’m simply saving my queue lists and will turn them in once the services resume. For now at least – I can champion the discoveries and the joy of finding the stories whilst hosting the blog tours!

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Why I wanted to host a spotlight & extract
for “The French Wife”:

As the founder and host of @SatBookChat – I am constantly seeking to find new stories featuring strong women in the centre of Romance & Women’s Fiction. I read an equal amount of Contemporary and Historical stories within these genres of interest whilst encompassing all the lovely sub-niches of their literary styles as well. This New Year 2020 I am also seeking out Feminist Lit which celebrates the kind of stories I am enjoying to discover as well. All of which I try to champion and showcase in the chats I host on Saturdays – wherein writers, readers, book reviewers, book bloggers and the rest of the bookish community on Twitter get to engage with one another. Thereby as a regular reader of these stories I was delighted to find a #newtomeauthor to start seeking out to read!

I personally adore reading as much Historical Fiction & Historical Women’s Fiction as I can get my hands on – there are new authors and voices in these two sections of Literature I am most keen on exploring further and most of them are from the UK. I have been appreciating my chance to spotlight these stories throughout the Spring of 2020 – whilst finding that quite a few of them are now available to be heard via Scribd! This helps me loads as a reader whose leaning on her libraries to help her source either print or audio copies of the stories she wishes to read – however, I hope there are similar streaming audio services aboard for those who don’t have access to Scribd. From what I understand it is available in most regions but perhaps not all of them.

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I happily found this novel is available via audiobook on Scribd! I immediately listened to the audio sampler to gather a sense of how the narrator Georgia McGuire approached her performance.

My thoughts on the story: This part of the story is involving the church and the duties of a priest. I can’t say it was the most exciting part of the story but it is how McGuire approached her delivery and what was happening behind the goings on of the clergy-house is what held me to the earphones. Towards the end of the sampler, things turnt a bit more dramatic – wherein someone is being put out of their job and they must find new accommendations – it seemed rather sudden and unexpected which given the timeline of the story, I was unsure where she would go from here. It was here where I drew closer to listening to the narrator as this was the kind of turning of events that gets rather exciting in a Historical novel!

My impressions of the narrator: McGuire has a strong and sharp voice which lends well for this story and the characters she’s bringing to life. I would consider this spoken narrative vs theatrical – wherein enjoying hearing her voice would be a joy as she had a nice cadence of rhythm in her performance. She has a keen accent as well – the kind of accent you love to find for British stories in narration.

As I listened to this sampler ahead of finding which extract I was given – it was quite champion to realise the two were connected in sequence of order within the story’s arc of disclosure!

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Did I grab your eye and attention?

Sound like the kind of bookish read you’ve been needing?

Be sure to brew your favourite cuppa and enjoy this extract from the novel.

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Book Spotlight | Featuring notes by Jorie and an extract from “The French Wife” by Diney CosteloeThe French Wife
by Diney Costeloe

Love, secrets and danger abound in the new historical novel from bestselling author Diney Costeloe, set in 19th-century France.

As the St Clair family prepare for the grand wedding of their daughter, Clarice, trouble is brewing. An old friendship, a new love and a dangerous secret threaten to destroy the life the St Clairs have built.

Their younger daughter, Hélène, became friends with orphaned Annette during the terrible events of the 1871 siege of Paris. Now they are reunited, with Annette working below stairs for Hélène's parents. But she is hiding a dangerous secret, which Hélène has promised to keep at all costs.

Meanwhile, Hélène has begun to fall in love with a young nobleman from England, whose family has plans which do not include their son choosing a French wife.

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

Genres: Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction


Published by Aria Fiction

Published By: Aria Fiction (@Aria_Fiction)
a Digital First imprint of Head of Zeus (@HoZ_Books)

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Available Formats: Hardback, Audiobook & Ebook

The Ebook & Audiobook released on 7th May 2020

Whilst the Hardback releases 6th August 2020!! (which is my 7th Blog’s Birthday!)

Converse via: #TheFrenchWife, #HistoricalFiction or #HistFicFun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com Read More

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Posted Saturday, 9 May, 2020 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Book | Novel Extract, Book Spotlight, Head of Zeus, Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction

A #HarlequinHeartwarming Book Spotlight | “Her Cowboy Sweetheart” (The Sweetheart Ranch: Book Four) by Cathy McDavid

Posted Wednesday, 6 May, 2020 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

Stories in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: I started hosting with Prism Book Tours at the end of [2017], having noticed the badge on Tressa’s blog (Wishful Endings) whilst I was visiting as we would partake in the same blog tours and/or book blogosphere memes. I had to put the memes on hold for several months (until I started to resume them (with Top Ten Tuesday) in January 2018). When I enquiried about hosting for Prism, I found I liked the niche of authors and stories they were featuring regularly. This is how I came to love discovering the Harlequin Heartwarming authors & series as much as it has been an honour to regularly request INSPY stories and authors. Whenever I host for Prism, I know I am in for an uplifting read and a journey into the stories which give me a lot of joy to find in my readerly queue of #nextreads. It is an honour to be a part of their team of book bloggers.

I received a complimentary copy of “Her Cowboy Sweetheart” direct from the author Cathy McDavid in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Why I continue to love returning back into The Sweetheart Ranch series:

You immediately get attached to Jewel, Ava and Tanner’s situation because of how heart-wrenching it truly is once you learn all the facts about what caused the distance to erupt between Jewel and Tanner! Tanner is the kind of son and brother you’d hoped to have in your family – the kind where honour and loyalty are his best attributes but when it comes to balancing his family with his girlfriend, this is where his first fault is revealled. Tanner didn’t handle himself well with Jewel and this is also why little Ava despite her innocent acceptance of him didn’t know him from Adam. I also loved how in the opening pages Tanner is fuming at Jewel, when in theory you’d have thought Jewel would have been beyond angry at Tanner; at least, she was initially but I think its the shock of being reunited which overtook her moreso than the anger itself.

Just acknowledging what had transpired in their lives felt like a soap opera – you can hardly believe any of that could be true and yet, the ways in which McDavid writes the story – you cannot help but believe the situation because of how true it truly is to believe plausible! If anything you have sympathy for these two beyond the obvious reasons and your empathy for their plight is what leads you into the next pages… with an itch to see if they can either work through their differences and heal the past or if they need to temper their own reactions for the sake of Ava. Whichever way McBride had envisioned this story to go, all I knew is that I was ready to take the journey!

I felt it was fitting Emily was the one who met and took Jewel round Sweetheart Ranch – she has this kind-hearted grandmotherly persona which suits her well and she still had that distinctive glow of the recently married about her as well. The irony of course is how readily Jewel is finding that this ranch and the community which surrounds it is a small world. Meaning, there are a lot of interconnections between the towne, the ranch and the overall region therein. If she felt that trying to cut out a new life for herself and Ava would be seamless whilst finding out Tanner was living here as well – wells, let’s just say she short-changed herself for a bit of grief!

McBride definitely sorted out a way to bridge us into the difficulties of where a hidden pregnancy once revealled can become the unexpected nightmare for the parents. Tanner was unfortunately being a stubborn as a bull in July – not wavering his stance or even trying to understand the path Jewel had walked without him present. Whilst at the same time, Jewel was trying not to just confront her feelings for Tanner or the repercussions of knowing his whereabouts given he’s the father of her child but there was a finer point towards what is best for not just the child but the parents of the child. This is one of those slippery slopes where because they weren’t officially married nor separated, they are in that gray area where the law recognises both of them but that doesn’t meant they are mutually exclusive in their claim for the child.

I liked how McBride was presenting the case for Ava – she didn’t add judgement to the situation but carefully started to weave in the consequences of what happens when a baby comes into your life when your not planning to conceive. It takes both parties to realise their roles and to feel comfortable in the role they inherently want to occupy but its even more complicated than that when you don’t have a custody agreement penned between you. I felt the rest of the story might bring us towards that conclusion – how do you deal with an unplanned pregnancy, a reluctant Mum who is wary of her ex-boyfriend (as there are a layer of trust issues) and legal circumstances above and beyond this situation which could wreck even more heartache on their fragile state of family?

The complexities of this story keep building the harder McBride takes us into the conspiracy of what is surrounding the key case at the centre of the drama. A conspiracy in this case to subvert the truth even of a worthy case felt to me to be a bit too much to ask of those who were remaining quiet because it put themselves in jeopardy. Not just for the rumours but the situational stickiness of never being able to be open with responses to even simple questions which might route back round to the issues of why they are choosing to remain silent. I felt McBride wrote a dearly realistic story-line which has a lot of hidden layers – she pulls apart her character’s emotional states by placing you centre-fold into their lives – to understand what is compelling them to lie or to at least cover the truth with half-truths for an outcome which on the surface seems to be the right way to go for this particular set of circumstances but overall, you just feel the worst for how unrealistic the plan is to execute.

The author’s note inside The Cowboy’s Christmas Baby revealled how McDavid had considered owning a ranch similar to this one she’s created in the Sweetheart Ranch series. I had to agree with her that the concept behind the ranch and the ways in which it is run is very alluring because you are focusing on the happier moments in all of our lives. To rejoice in that kind of goodwill and thankfulness on a continuing basis would be beyond uplifting because you’re helping to seal the memories of life changing events which become the cornerstones of people’s lives!

Similar to the seamless transition I felt when I was reading The Cowboy’s Perfect Match – I also felt transitioning into this novel after reading one earlier in Spring was as easy as regularly Saturday family dinners! You get to re-visit with beloved characters, re-settle into the time-line of Sweetheart Ranch and find new characters you’re drawn into reading about due to their aspirations and the stories they have to share with us all.

-quoted from my book review for The Cowboy’s Christmas Baby

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A #HarlequinHeartwarming Book Spotlight | “Her Cowboy Sweetheart” (The Sweetheart Ranch: Book Four) by Cathy McDavidHer Cowboy Sweetheart
by Cathy McDavid
Source: Author via Prism Book Tours

He’s been a good friend

But can he be her sweetheart?

At Sweetheart Ranch, single mom Carly Leighton finds a fresh start, and a friendly neighbor in former bull rider JD Moreno. Neither are looking for love—Carly must think first of her son, Rickie, while JD is recovering from a career-ending balance disorder. But when her former in-laws demand access to Rickie, Carly turns to JD for support and finds he is becoming more than a friend in need…

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1335889690

Also by this author: A Cowboy's Christmas Proposal, The Cowboy's Perfect Match, The Cowboy's Christmas Baby

Also in this series: A Cowboy's Christmas Proposal, The Cowboy's Perfect Match, The Cowboy's Christmas Baby


Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Contemporary Romance, Romance Fiction


Published by Harlequin Heartwarming

on 5th May, 2020

Format: Trade Paperback

Published by: Harlequin Heartwarming,
an imprint of Harlequin Books (@HarlequinBooks)

Formats Available: Ebook and Paperback

The Sweetheart Ranch series:

A Cowboy's Christmas Proposal by Cathy McDavidThe Cowboy's Perfect Match by Cathy McDavidThe Cowboy's Christmas Baby by Cathy McDavidHer Cowboy Sweetheart by Cathy McDavid

A Cowboy’s Christmas Proposal (book one) | see also review

The Cowboy’s Perfect Match (book two) | see also review

The Cowboy’s Christmas Baby (book three) | see also review

Her Cowboy Sweetheart (book four)

Converse via: #Contemporary #Romance & #Harlequin Heartwarming

About Cathy McDavid

Cathy McDavid

In the third grade, NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Cathy McDavid made it her goal to read every Black Stallion book ever written. Who knew such an illustrious ambition would eventually lead to a lifelong love of all things western and a career writing contemporary romances for Harlequin? With over 1.2 million books sold, Cathy is also a member of the prestigious Romance Writers of America’s Honor Roll.

An “almost” Arizona native, she’s married to her own real-life sweetheart, whom she re-met a few years ago at a high school reunion. Her grown twins are out on their own and finding their happily-ever-afters. In 2014, Cathy retired from the corporate world to write full-time. She now spends her days penning stories about good looking cowboys riding the range, busting a bronc, and sweeping gals off their feet. It a tough job, but she’s willing to make the sacrifice.

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Posted Wednesday, 6 May, 2020 by jorielov in Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host, Book Spotlight, Contemporary Romance, Contemporary Western Fiction, Cowboys & Ranches, Prism Book Tours, Romance Fiction, Western Fiction, Western Romance