Category: Small Towne USA

#HarlequinHeartwarming Blog Book Tour | “Reunited with the Cowboy” (Book No.1 of the Heroes of Shelter Creek series) by Claire McEwen

Posted Thursday, 11 July, 2019 by jorielov , , , , 0 Comments

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

Acquired Book By: I’ve been hosting for Prism Book Tours since September of 2017 – having noticed the badge on Tressa’s blog (Wishful Endings) as we would partake in the same blog tours and/or book blogosphere memes. As I enquired about hosting for Prism, I found I liked the niche of authors and stories they were featuring regularly. 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 when I’m not showcasing book reviews on behalf of Harlequin Heartwarming which has become my second favourite imprint of Harlequin next to my beloved #LoveINSPIRED Suspense. I am also keenly happy PRISM hosts a variety of Indie Authors and INSPY Fiction novelists.

I received a complimentary copy of “Reunited with the Cowboy” direct from the author Claire McEwen in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Let’s face it: if there is a cowboy involved, Jorie is *going!* to be reading it:

The beauty really are the authors Harlequin has within Heartwarming and Love Inspired – they know how to write the drama within the romance but also how to write compelling series with realistic characters & narratives which are a joy to be reading. I get quite giddy whenever there is a new author to read from Heartwarming or Love Inspired – whilst having the chance to participate on one of their blog tours is quite icing on the romantic cake! I love celebrating authors who are writing the STORIES which give me a heart full of blissitude to be #amreading – thus, for the past two years I’ve been hosting PRISM’s blog tours, I’ve been doubly blessed to become acquainted with the Heartwarming imprint and their series!

I’ll be honest – before I even knew a whisper of a hint of where this story would take me – the novel perked my interest for a singular word in the book’s title: *cowboy!* I know, that sounds interesting doesn’t it? How can one word in a book’s title give you the wickedest sweet joy of anticipation in order to read a story? You’d have to go back into my childhood & teenage years to realise that I read quite a lot of lovely Cowboy & Western Fiction! So much so, this is one reason I was wickedly thankful to have found the Rocky Mountain Cowboys & Return of the Blackwell Brothers over the last few years – because they’ve given me *contemporary!* cowboys I can rally behind rather than my usual guilty pleasure of reading the Historicals!

Open country, horse-back riding, close-knit families & communities who care about each other is what draws me into Cowboy Fiction & stories of the West. However, you can find cowboys in nearly every state – outside of my wanderings in the Rockies and other points West – I have found some of the most delightful stories are about Northern California ranchers & ranches! This particular story is set in NorCal and I was wicked excited about meeting the community of Shelter Creek but even moreso – the characters who populate the towne and the series itself!

What sweetened the joy of reading this novel is this is the *first!* novel in a NEW series for Heartwarming inasmuch as the fact I learnt this is the first book the author has published in the past few years – being a writer myself, I understand the long journey behind the books themselves and am wicked thrilled I get to be on her blog tour celebrating the joy of what this book represented to her as a writer and as a creative!

Still though.. its a cowboy story and I am seriously over the moon thankful for a new cowboy story to be reading,..

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#HarlequinHeartwarming Blog Book Tour | “Reunited with the Cowboy” (Book No.1 of the Heroes of Shelter Creek series) by Claire McEwenReunited with the Cowboy
Subtitle: Heroes of Shelter Creek
by Claire McEwen
Source: Author via Prism Book Tours

She can save his ranch…

But can he forgive her?

Maya Burton knows she’s the last person rancher Caleb Dunne wants to see. After all, she survived the crash that killed his sister, and then left town. Now she has to convince the stubborn cowboy that she can help him save his ranch. But once she earns his trust—and his heart—will she be able to walk away?

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781335510730

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romance Fiction


Published by Harlequin Heartwarming

on 1st July, 2019

Format: Larger Print (Mass Market Paperback)

Pages: 368

The Heroes of Shelter Creek series:

*Isn’t it lovely – this novel kicks-off a NEW series!!*

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Reunited with the Cowboy (book one) – Caleb & Maya’s story

After the Rodeo (book two) ← forthcoming, 3rd of September, 2019!
(Jace & Vivian’s story!)

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: ##RWTCTour and #HarlequinHeartwarming

About Claire McEwen

Claire McEwen

Claire McEwen writes stories about strong heroes and heroines who take big, emotional journeys to find their happily-ever-after. She lives by the ocean in Northern California with her family and a scruffy, mischievous terrier. When she’s not writing, Claire enjoys gardening, reading and discovering flea-market treasures. She loves to hear from readers!

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted Thursday, 11 July, 2019 by jorielov in 21st Century, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, California, Contemporary Romance, Family Life, Indie Author, Life Shift, Modern Day, Prism Book Tours, PTSD, Realistic Fiction, Romance Fiction, Second Chance Love, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Western Romance

#HarlequinHeartwarming Blog Book Tour | “Sweet Home Alaska” (Book No.5 of the Northern Lights series) by Beth Carpenter

Posted Wednesday, 10 July, 2019 by jorielov , , , , 3 Comments

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

Acquired Book By: I’ve been hosting for Prism Book Tours since September of 2017 – having noticed the badge on Tressa’s blog (Wishful Endings) as we would partake in the same blog tours and/or book blogosphere memes. As I enquired about hosting for Prism, I found I liked the niche of authors and stories they were featuring regularly. 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 when I’m not showcasing book reviews on behalf of Harlequin Heartwarming which has become my second favourite imprint of Harlequin next to my beloved #LoveINSPIRED Suspense. I am also keenly happy PRISM hosts a variety of Indie Authors and INSPY Fiction novelists.

I received a complimentary copy of “Sweet Home Alaska” direct from the author Beth Carpenter in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I wanted to read this story & why I forgot it was the fifth novel:

The beauty really are the authors Harlequin has within Heartwarming and Love Inspired – they know how to write the drama within the romance but also how to write compelling series with realistic characters & narratives which are a joy to be reading. I get quite giddy whenever there is a new author to read from Heartwarming or Love Inspired – whilst having the chance to participate on one of their blog tours is quite icing on the romantic cake! I love celebrating authors who are writing the STORIES which give me a heart full of blissitude to be #amreading – thus, for the past two years I’ve been hosting PRISM’s blog tours, I’ve been doubly blessed to become acquainted with the Heartwarming imprint and their series!

I’ve previously shared this sentiment of mine on behalf of these two Harlequin imprints – as my blog Jorie Loves A Story has been happily featuring their authors off/on for the past few years. My admiration for the authors is fiercely strong & I love being able to ‘meet’ a new author I’ve not yet read – thus, when I first found out about the blog tour for Sweet Home Alaska – I thought for sure I’d have enough time to fetch the four books leading into this fifth release as I had with the Seasons of Alaska series which I also reviewed earlier this year – where I was able to back-read the series before arriving in the latest installment.

A bit of best laid plans for this July – it took me all of June to feel like myself again – I was battling through a lot fatigue and exhaustion because of the bout of migraines (I had five in case its been bit since you visited with me or this is your first time stopping by) to where my reading queues were all but evaporating away from me. It wasn’t until July began where I started to feel like I had *finally!* taken a clear step away from May’s migraines and settled into a groove which reminded me of what my life is like without migraines.

What renewed my readerly spirits the most was picking up some Love Inspired Suspense novels to kick-off my INSPY readings in July. Whenever I read LIS and the Heartwarming stories, I am thankful their imprints provide Larger Print editions – their much easier to shift inside after strong bouts of migraines – not sure if they knew that but it helps me get back into reading quite a bit faster! Having read two and a half of those now, I feel like I am ready to tackle not just the books going on blog tours this Summer but my plans to read more Fantasy this month and tackle #MyYASummer from whence I began it just a few short weeks ago!

Thus, I decided to throw caution to the wind – mostly (of course!) as a result of having *forgotten!* I needed to queue the novels ahead of this one to read through my library’s ILL services (inter-library loans) – which I blame on the migraines – and soak into this series arriving in the fifth release! I know most authors lament their novels can be read as one-offs rather an series in-progress – however, whenever I’m able to queue my ILLs far ahead of a blog tour or after a randomly discovered #newtomeauthor – I *love!* being able to follow their vision for their series start to finish. That’s just how I like to roll.

This time round, I was hoping that my past experiences of jumping into a Harlequin Heartwarming series midway through it would prove as equally enjoyable now as it has in the past – as it is one of the few imprints/publishers where I can actually confidently say I can handle *missing out!* on the prior installments – to save to read for later and ahead of the author’s next release! I’ve found some wonderful authors this way – lest I mention, that my path into the Rocky Mountain Cowboys series has been anything but traditional?

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#HarlequinHeartwarming Blog Book Tour | “Sweet Home Alaska” (Book No.5 of the Northern Lights series) by Beth CarpenterSweet Home Alaska
Subtitle: A Northern Lights Novel
by Beth Carpenter
Source: Author via Prism Book Tours

Some sparks last forever.

But once burned…

World traveler Dr. Scott Willingham is known for being calm and levelheaded—except where Volta Morgan is concerned. In the ten years since they parted, Scott still can’t forget her. Now he’s come to Alaska to find Volta and finally let her go, only to find their attraction is stronger than ever. Can Scott leave her behind one last time…or has he truly found a place to call home?

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781335510754

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romance Fiction


Published by Harlequin Heartwarming

on 2nd July, 2019

Format: Larger Print (Mass Market Paperback)

Pages: 384

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

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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!

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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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted Wednesday, 10 July, 2019 by jorielov in 21st Century, Alaska, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Contemporary Romance, Indie Author, Modern Day, Prism Book Tours, Realistic Fiction, Romance Fiction, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA

#SaturdaysAreBookish | Book Review | “The Summer Guests” by Mary Alice Monroe

Posted Saturday, 22 June, 2019 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

#SaturdaysAreBookish created by Jorie in Canva.

After launching this lovely new feature of mine during [Autumn, 2018] it is a pleasure of joy to continue to bring #SaturdaysAreBookish as a compliment focus of my Twitter chat @SatBookChat. If you see the chat icon at the top of my blog (header bar) you can click over to visit with us. The complimentary showcases on my blog will reflect the diversity of stories, authors and publishers I would be featuring on the chat itself. As at the root and heart of the chat are the stories I am reading which compliment the conversations.

#SaturdaysAreBookish throughout [2019] will be featuring the Romance & Women’s Fiction authors I am discovering to read across genre and point of interest. Every Saturday will feature a different author who writes either Romance or Women’s Fiction – the stories I am reading might simply inspire the topics in the forthcoming chats or they might be directly connected to the current guest author.

I am excited about where new guests and new stories will lay down the foundation of inspiring the topics, the conversations and the bookish recommendations towards promoting Romance & Women’s Fiction. Here’s a lovely New Year full of new authors and their stories to celebrate!

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Acquired Book By: I have been hosting blog tours and reviews for Simon & Schuster off and on for nearly a year now. I’ve had the joy of discovering their stories through Contemporary and Historical narratives whilst happily finding a lot of their authors are writing the kinds of stories which keep me engaged and rooted in their narratives. Such as the Seven Sisters series by Lucinda Riley – which is why when I first saw the note about the tour for ‘The Summer Guests’, I was most curious – not just of this potentially becoming my first Monroe novel to read but because of where the story was set. I happen to love the mountainous regions of my country and this one in particular hugs close to Appalachia which happens to be the mountain range I am most familiar with due to how oft I read stories set there. It has only been in recent years I’ve exchanged the Eastern mountains for the Rockies; thus, when I learnt the setting was in Western North Carolina and centred round hurricanes, natural disasters and overcoming life’s adversities – I was quite smitten with the plot!

I received a complimentary copy of “The Summer Guests” direct from the publisher Gallery Books (an imprint of Simon & Schuster) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why this particular story perked an interest to read:

First and foremost, I love stories about horses, horse culture and horsemanship. I’m the girl who grew up reading about the wilds of the West, farms, ranches and cowboys because the wide open landscapes of those stories called to my spirit, to my soul. They were enriching in how families hugged close together, how life was better lived together and how if you needed some space, the wide open plains provided the best place to seek it out on a horse. The concept of being able to wake with the roosters, put on your riding clothes and hide out to chase after dawn’s first break of dawn was something that truly appealled to a girl who loved horse-back riding but wasn’t able to continue it forward into her teens and adult years. I still long for the day where I could get back on a horse and reconnect with a sport I have loved since I was quite young.

You can see this love of mine coming through Jorie Loves A Story – from the stories of Karen Rock (her Rocky Mountain Cowboys series), the limited serial Return of the Blackwell Brothers, the enduring and brilliant dramatic Catherine Ryan Hyde novel The Language of Hoofbeats and a forthcoming review by a new series of Harlequin Heartwarming entitled Reunited with the Cowboy. It is also seen in my choices of television and motion pictures – I have been passionately attached to the production of Heartland – streaming it first on Netflix for the first nine seasons and finding the tenth happily available to stream via Hallmark Movies Now. I’m hoping to stream the eleventh season if Hallmark acquires the rights to it as the series is currently in production for their 13th season.

Whilst at the same time, I also have a healthy appreciation for the mountains – Appalachia on the East and the Rockies on the West. Growing up natural disasters were as much a part of my life as they are a part of a lot of people’s lives today. There were some honest whoppers of destruction back in the ’80s and ’90s; some even set the record books before they were re-broken in the 21st Century by fiercer storms and/or worse disasters than our imaginations could have conceived. I still have shivers of anxiety just contemplating Hurricane Sandy for the folks on the Mid-Atlantic Coast! Not to mention the fires and floods of the West Coast and the persistent tornadoes of the Mid-West this Spring have re-set how we view natural disasters and how we survive them.

Finding this was a story about an eclectic group of people who not just evacuated but found themselves in a place they weren’t expecting with people they weren’t planning to connect with felt like a wicked good read. It also felt like an alternative view of what we think about most when we connect a natural disaster in our minds with the chaos we see on television. There is always much more to the ‘story’ than what the stories are revealling to us in a televised recapture of events and that is why I felt reading The Summer Guests would be a brilliant way to kick-off my #SummerReads for Women’s Fiction!

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#SaturdaysAreBookish | Book Review | “The Summer Guests” by Mary Alice MonroeThe Summer Guests
by Mary Alice Monroe
Source: Direct from Publisher

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Beach House series comes a heartwarming and evocative novel about the bonds and new beginnings that are born from natural disasters and how, even during the worst of circumstances—or perhaps because of them—we discover what is most important in life.

Late August is a beautiful time on the Southern coast—the peach trees are ripe, the ocean is warm, and the sweet tea is icy. A perfect time to enjoy the rocking chairs on the porch. But beneath the calm surface bubbles a threat: it’s also peak hurricane season.

When a hurricane threatens the coasts of Florida and South Carolina, an eclectic group of evacuees flees for the farm of their friends Grace and Charles Phillips in North Carolina: the Phillips’s daughter Moira and her rescue dogs, famed equestrian Javier Angel de la Cruz, makeup artist Hannah McLain, horse breeder Gerda Klug and her daughter Elise, and island resident Cara Rutledge. They bring with them only the few treasured possessions they can fit in their vehicles. Strangers to all but the Phillips, they must ride out the storm together.

During the course of one of the most challenging weeks of their lives, relationships are put to the test as the evacuees are forced to confront the unresolved issues they have with themselves and with each other. But as the storm passes, they realize that what really matters isn’t what they brought with them to the mountains. Rather, it’s what they’ll take with them once they leave.

With Mary Alice Monroe’s “usual resplendent storytelling” (Patti Callahan Henry, New York Times bestselling author), The Summer Guests is a poignant and compelling story of self-discovery, love, and redemption.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781501193620

Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Women's Fiction


Setting: Western (Mountains) of North Carolina


Published by Gallery Books

on 11th June, 2019

Format: Hardcover Edition

Pages: 368

Published By: Gallery Books ()
(an imprint of Simon & Schuster )

Formats Available: Paperback and Ebook

Converse via: #TheSummerGuests, #SummerReads and #SaturdaysAreBookish

About Mary Alice Monroe

Mary Alice Monroe Photo Credit Mic Smith Photography

Mary Alice Monroe is the New York Times bestselling author of more than twenty books, including the Beach House series: The Beach House, Beach House Memories, Swimming Lessons, Beach House for Rent, and Beach House Reunion.

She is a 2018 Inductee into the South Carolina Academy of Authors’ Hall of Fame, and her books have received numerous awards, including the 2008 South Carolina Center for the Book Award for Writing, the 2014 South Carolina Award for Literary Excellence, the 2015 SW Florida Author of Distinction Award, the RT Lifetime Achievement Award, the International Book Award for Green Fiction, and the 2017 Southern Book Prize for Fiction.

Her bestselling novel The Beach House is also a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. An active conservationist, she lives in the lowcountry of South Carolina.

Photo Credit: Mic Smith Photography

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted Saturday, 22 June, 2019 by jorielov in #SaturdaysAreBookish, 21st Century, Animals in Fiction & Non-Fiction, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Fly in the Ointment, Horse Drama & Fiction, Latter-life Adventures, Life Shift, Low Country South Carolina, Meteorology, Modern Day, Natural Disasters & Catastrophic Events, Non-traditional characters, North Carolina, Post-911 (11th September 2001), Rescue & Adoption of Animals, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Vulgarity in Literature, Western North Carolina Mountains, Women of a Certain Age, Women's Fiction