Acquired Book By: I started hosting with Prism Book Tours at the end of , 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 “An Alaskan Homecoming” direct from the author Beth Carpenter in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.
Hallo, Hallo dear hearts,
Every Summer, I am vexed and plagued with severe storms and *every!* Summer, I try to divert the angst of storm season by being better prepared to dodge the agony of riding out the worst of them from affecting or rather in this instance *disrupting!* my readerly life and blog schedule. However, there are a few years which stand out in my mind where despite your plans to circumvent issues before they happen, nature has a way of surprising you ahead of time! Such is why I had to cut back this review to a preview review rather than a full-length review – as my intentions were to read this lovely novel ahead of the storms rather than being short-changed in time due to their imminent arrival into my life.
Such a simple plan and yet, as soon as June began – the storms not only affected the internet connectivity I enjoy using but it also started to affect my work life as well. The hours I would normally have to spare to read after or before work were lost to lightning and last week in particular, I was without the internet completely for nearly the full week. Considering of course that particular circumstance left me with a full system failure which required the service provider to switch out all the equipment as nothing was working at one point! Oy.
Thereby, the one wench in my plans this June is when I was able to begin reading this lovely novel which would also be the kick-off of one of my secreted readerly plans for Summer!
Let me share with you what I’ve sorted out – as I have plans to celebrate #MyYASummer with you from June through September, whilst I also have another little idea to make me a wicked happy Romance reader: A Harlequin Heartwarming Summer!! Mostly as I’ve been sitting on a bit of a BIG secret – not to long ago, a few months back now, I came across a lovely resource for buying these lovelies second-hand wherein I could ‘add’ some #newtomeauthors onto my shelves whilst picking up books by authors I have come to know through the Heartwarming line – either as a reader and/or as a chat hostess via @SatBookChat!
I purchased 7x novels – combined with the EPIC LOVELY Butterfly Harbour novels Ms Stewart graced my life with this Spring and the four remaining stories of the #BlackwellSisters series those authors sent to me as well — you could say, my Summer is going to be brilliantly EPIC all the way round!! I’ve been wanting to jump dive back into reading Heartwarming novels but betwixt life, work and storms (ie. the intensely driven ones with heaps of lightning & flooding rains most of us are contending with right now) – you could say, I had to put a lot of my #currentreads on hold!
I struggled with moving past the last of my Harlequin Suspense reads as I read a few jarring stories which sort of messed with my headspace. I *knew!* I wanted to resume from whence I’ve left off but like most things in our lives, when it comes to our readerly lives, patience is KEY. I decided despite the frequent imbalances between work and life, I refuse to give in the towel. I just have to continue to be more proactively creative when it comes to when I can binge read my favourites and when I can snack on stories which enrich my heart and give me heaps of readerly blissitude to be read. And, that dear hearts is why I’m spending Summer anchoured into both Young Adult Reads and Harlequin Heartwarming!
Soon I’ll be talking about another sweet find I made recently and how it ties into a birthday project wherein all of us (Mum, Da & I) are journeying together into a new series where faith, romance and a hospital set the backdrop of a new Cosy Mystery series wherein as a family we’re doing something new together.
For now, let’s celebrate my continued joys in reading the Heartwarming novelists who give me #wickedgoodreads and endeavour me to have more cuppa love moments as I seek out their stories and series. Not to mention its the PURFECT way to unwind after work – with my tux by my side and a Heartwarming novel in my hands – queuing Spotify into my ears and I’m one delightfully happy book blogger!
Why I loved the Northern Lights series coming into it at Book Eight:
What I love most about travelling to such an wicked adventurous state like Alaska through the series I am reading by Heartwarming novelists like Carpenter are the awesome depictions of the wild Alaska residents and the impressively majestic observations you can get from just ‘being still’ somewhere in the natural world therein. Carpenter treats us straight-off the bat with a moose sighting as Natalie takes the train to Anchorage – which next to their ferry system, the trains I felt would provide the most wonderment of JOY to a visitor or local resident because of what can be seen ashore and just outside the windows. I know one day I’ll get to visit and adventure in and out of the cities, townes and villages of our most northern state one day but for now, I am happily content in ‘being there’ rapt in the same joy of mirth these lovely authors are giving me through their stories!!
The kind of synthesis of plotting Carpenter used is one that I personally love – because it enables you to see the plot from different perspectives not merely limited to the two key characters you might presume are at the forefront of the novel! This allows for heartier depth, keen observation of the evolving threads of underlying suspense (as this refers to the twist) and a lovely bounce and volley watching the characters react and respond to everything in their purview! Honestly – it is a seriously awesome installment for this series because it tackles a story from a different starting point than the others in the series yet gives you the added benefit of having four characters to chase after into the thickening plot than merely two! And, that dear hearts is all I’ll say as it sneaks close enough to a spoiler and its too much of an enjoyable novel to even nibble off a telling hint about the overall plot for you!
I fell hard for this family and for the warmth Carpenter brought into how she told this story – reading it was such a refreshing balm to my soul after such a long hard fight to get my health realigned recently. Curling inside the beauty of how Carpenter took two strangers and a Wintry backdrop situated in a state I have held such a fond affection for from afar is what I loved most about reading An Alaskan Family Christmas. In the end, all that matters is the family we love, the memories we create and the willingness to be open to the unexpected – to fully embrace life in whichever way it alights in our lives and to give ourselves the chance to welcome into our lives a relationship we never expected would arrive the day we were thinking about everything else but our own dreams for the future. This is the kind of heart-lifting romance to give yourself a treat during the holiday season – fully enraptured in the mirth of how serendipity and a bit of Christmas magic can sometimes give you the present you need at a time where you felt you couldn’t be surprised anymore!
If Ms Carpenter is on the fence about writing more installments for this series – I hope she extends it out to a rounded eight, ten or twelve novels all told because she could seriously keep penning these lovelies as I wickedly keep devouring them! Time to see if my favourite used book shoppe which carries Harlequin Heartwarming novels has the first four which I never had the pleasure of reading before arriving inside the fifth!
-quoted from my book review for An Alaskan Family Christmas
“Ever after” wasn’t the plan…
Rowan O'Shea's intention was just to visit her family in the small Alaskan town she calls home. Now she's not sure she wants to leave, given the romantic mess she's left behind. A temporary fake marriage to gorgeous veterinarian Zack Vogel might be the perfect solution, if she can convince Zack. But Rowan's marriage of convenience has a seriously inconvenient snag—she's falling for her new fake husband!
Places to find the book:
Published by Harlequin Heartwarming
on 25th May, 2021
Format: Trade Paperback
The Northern Lights series:
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! (see also Review)
Alaskan Dreams (book six) ← review forthcoming this Summer!
An Alaskan Family Christmas (book seven) (see also Review)
An Alaskan Homecoming (book eight) ← review forthcoming this Summer!
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: #BethCarpenter and #HarlequinHeartwarming