Wednesday, April 16, 2014

"Pressed Pennies"

Rick and Abby grew up together, became best friends, and ultimately fell in love. However, circumstance tore them apart in their early teens, and they moved on to lives less idyllic than they dreamed about in those early days. Rick has had a very successful creed, but his marriage flat-lined. Abby has a daughter, Paige, but Paige's father nearly destroyed Abby's spirit.

Now fate has thrown Rick and Abby together again. In their early thirties, they are more world-weary than they were as kids. But their relationship still shimmers, and they're hungry to make up for lost time. However, Paige, now nine, is not nearly as enthusiastic. She's very protective of the life she's made with her mother and not open to the idea of the duo becoming a trio. Meanwhile, Rick has very little experience dealing with kids and doesn't know how to handle Paige. This leaves Abby caught between the two people who matter the most to her. What happens when the life you've dreamed of remains just inches from your grasp?

Pressed Pennies is an intensely romantic, deeply heartfelt story of love in its many incarnations, relationships in their many guises, and family in its many meanings.

My Thoughts...

This is the third book I've read by this author, Steven Manchester, and I enjoyed this book more than the other two. This book was a fast moving story that kept me up into the wee small hours of the morning. For me it was a very thought provoking book...I enjoy that when an author can make me think about what I am reading, and the story stays with you long after you are finished reading it. 

Thought provoking part...were parts of the story that I found a bit unrealistic. Example: Abby and her daughter Paige had to move to a different home because they couldn't afford the old house. But the mother, Abby, found $300 to hire a limo for her daughter's ninth birthday party with eight of her nine year old friends! I thought that was a bit over the top. I was raised by a single mother (widowed when I was 4 years old) and there was never that kind of money just lying around for any kind of a party. Just a pet peeve of mine, I guess. Made me stop and think for a minute, anyway... 

Thought provoking part...I thought Paige ruled the household more then her mother, a bit spoiled to say the least. It seemed to me that everything had to be Paige's way or no way. (When our children are young we are not their best friend, we are the parents, we make the rules. Once they become adults, then we can become their best friends.) Throughout their formative years we should be guiding, directing, and teaching them, not the other way around. Another pet peeve, I guess...

I know this is just a story, but in this day and age I see so many families being ruled by the children instead of the parents. I guess I'm from the old school where parents were parents and children were children...

With that off my chest and being said, I have to say I really enjoyed this story. In the end, everything turned out fine and everyone lived happily-ever-after. I enjoyed this enough to award it 4 "Pressed Pennies" stars.

A big Thank You to Steven Manchester who gifted this book to me, for me to read and review, and share 'My Thoughts.' Thank you Steven for a fun filled two days of reading.

I did not receive any type of compensation for reading and reviewing this book. While I receive free books from publishers and authors I am under no obligation to write a positive review.

Reading Challenges...
Romance Reading Challenge

Monday, April 14, 2014

"A Mad, Wicked Folly"

Welcome to the world of the fabulously wealthy in London, 1909, where dresses and houses are overwhelmingly opulent, social class means everything, and women are taught to be nothing more than wives and mothers. Into this world comes seventeen-year-old Victoria Darling, who wants only to be an artist~~a nearly impossible dream for a girl.

After Vicky poses nude for her illicit art class, she is expelled from her French finishing school. Shamed and scandalized, her parents try to marry her off to the wealthy Edmund Carrick-Humphrey. But Vicky has other things on her mind: her clandestine application to the Royal College of Art; her participation in the suffragette movement; and her growing attraction to a working-class boy, Will, who may be her muse~~or may be the love of her life. As the world of debutante balls, corsets, and high society obligations closes in around her, Vicky must figure out: just how much is she willing to sacrifice to pursue her dreams?

My Thoughts...

YA genre is not something I normally read, but just the same I found this an interesting book. I never realized what the women of the suffrage movement went through to try to get rights for women of the 19th and 20th century. They were thrown in prison, force-fed, which caused some of them to die. The ghastly practice of force-feeding continued until 1913, and was a widespread method of trying to prevent women from protesting through hunger strikes. 

Edwardian women were making their voices heard through the suffrage movement, and young women were finding employment, and becoming better educated. Middle-class girls were rebelling against their parents and demanding treatment equal to that of boys. Upper-middle-class and aristocratic girls clung to tradition more than middle-class girls, but they too wanted the freedom to be more independent.

Vicky's arranged betrothal was very common for the time. People rarely married purely for love; a good match equaled marrying someone within your own class or someone who could further the interests and contribute to the betterment of the family. Vicky, as an upper-middle-class girl, would have been forbidden to date someone like Will, who was working-class.

This book is a part of my Nook library. I found this book quite interesting and decided to award it 4 Mad and Wicked stars.

Reading Challenges....
Romance Reading Challenge

Monday, April 7, 2014

"Titanic Affair"

Emilia Cavendish is given a first class ticket on board Titanic and sets out to start a new life with her godmother. The first few days aboard the world-famous 'unsinkable' liner are everything she hoped for as she enjoys the unaccustomed luxuries of the fabulous ship. She makes new friends amongst her fellow passengers-not least the darkly handsome, if somewhat overbearing, Carl Latimer. But when Titanic hits the iceberg, Emilia finds herself in danger from an old enemy on board, and as she struggles to escape him, Titanic starts to sink...

Author's Note...
This novel presents an accurate view of life on board Titanic as well as providing a detailed account of the disaster. It was carefully researched using contemporary newspaper articles, survivors' accounts and official documents. Sometimes the eye-witness accounts varied and in these cases I used the account which best fit my story. Woven into the accurate portrayal of Titanic's voyage and ultimate sinking is a love affair which transcends the disaster, providing a thoughtful yet entertaining read.

My Thoughts...
Each April I try to read something about the 'Titanic' since it is the anniversary of its ill-fated voyage. What a nice surprise when this year I found this novel by Amanda Grange, one of my favorite authors. I was not disappointed with her story. 

Stories about the Titanic always fascinate me, I enjoyed this story it was a fast moving story, and a fast read. I found it quite enjoyable. I realize many feel it followed the movie Titanic, however, only seeing the movie once many years ago, I really don't agree with those statements.

I must say I like Amanda's story much better than the movie. Amanda's story was "G" rated which I liked. No nude scenes or steamy love scenes anywhere throughout this story. It was a delightfully charming story to read. Of course the chaos surrounding the wreck and sinking of the ship wasn't delightful or charming, but the story of the "Titanic Affair" of Emilia and Carl was. 

I wouldn't say I am a Titanic Buff, but anyone who is may enjoy this story, especially if they would like some light reading about the Titanic voyage of April 1912.

You may already know that the Titanic hit an iceberg at 11:40 p.m. on the night of April 13, 1912 and sank just over two-and-a-half hours later on April 14, 1912. That was 102 years ago this year on April 14, 2014. 

This book is a part of my Kindle library and I liked it so much I awarded it 4 anniversary stars.

Reading Challenges...
Romance Reading Challenge
Mount TBR Reading Challenge
E-book Reading Challenge