It is unusual to come across a humorous cozy murder mystery with a dash of romance which ALSO includes a faith element, but Dying to Read by Lorena McCourtney does just that. This book does not delve deeply into the faith idea, though the main character is rather faith driven. She is concerned about the possibility of others finding peace through prayer, praying for others and things she is going to do. There is discussion of going to church at multiple times through out the book.
Don’t get me wrong, there is a definite murder mystery, definitely some romance and a bit of humour too. There is even some tension as the entire thing is wrapped up. Dying to Read is the first book in The Cate KinKaid Files. Cate is working for her PI uncle as she is in between jobs, without a social life and experiencing what is one of the worst hair cuts possible. Everything blows up in her face when she takes on the job of determining if a specific woman lives at a specific address. From then on in it is all murder, confusion, and unique characters.
I found this book to be a fun and eventful read. A full novel at 321 pages it actually was a book you could sink your teeth in and a nice change after all of the novellas I have been coming across lately. I found that I did not solve the mystery too quickly, and even better some of the CHARACTERS were mysteries too!
Cate made me giggle and the book club ladies (seriously you have to read this to truly get a look at all the characters) added some spice and silly to the mix. The hunky man was a bit of a mystery wrapped in kindness and good timing and the ending was just as enjoyable as the middle and the beginning. I seriously hope the following books in the series are just as enjoyable and hope to find out myself! (In writing up this review I realize I HAVE read something else by this author and reviewed it, AND enjoyed it… check that out HERE)
Well, time to lighten things up with a seasonal offering… the WRONG season… but holiday fare all the same. The Doctor’s Christmas Wish… well it happens at… Christmas… this is part of the Village Green series by Renee Ryan. It is a Love Inspired book, so definitely faith based.
This contemporary Christian romance has a bit of an unusual premise. Keely O’Toole (who is a mix of Irish and Italian) has returned home (to Village Green) to take up the position of mother to her cousin’s six year old daughter Felicity (or Flicka). Her cousin has been imprisoned after embezzling funds for 12 years. Father is out of the picture.
Keely is running a restaurant, raising a child who is hurting and planning the Christmas parade. Here enters her neighbour, Dr. Ethan Scott. High school nemesis (in her eyes), ex army doctor who now runs a private practice with a childhood friend (who is also the husband of his sister, Keely’s best friend).
There are widowers and orphans a plenty in this Christmas tale. Though the orphaning happened post childhood. Two engagements ended abruptly, one in an accident resulting in death and the other with a heart who has not yet let go of the past. This book really does focus on the idea of releasing a lost love but not forgetting that love… when is it time to risk your heart again? Can you really say good bye? What happens to the love for the first person?
This book is definitely a journey of faith and healing. A lovely afternoon read on a rainy day, I think. Well worth the time, this story is full of holiday romance and healing with a strong and lovely message.
From a fantastic young adult novel to a light Christian based romance. Her Holiday Family by Ruth Logan Herne is a story to enjoy on a quiet afternoon. Dealing with family rifts is never simple, especially when it comes out of nowhere and blinds you. When forgiveness is slow to come and life an uphill battle love is rarely at the front of one’s mind. Neither is reconnecting with someone tied to a difficult time long past.
There are many elements in this story… a broken family, sudden death, arson, foster children and adoption, cancer… Both of the main characters are coming from a place of pain and heart ache. One has lost both her parents and her hard earned business, the other faces losing his father and the reality of his culpability (or lack there was) to an incident that has haunted him since his youth.
There is a definite mystery, a strong romantic element and, of course, a lovely dose of Christmas spirit. Based in Kirkwood Lake (and fifth in the Kirkland Lake series), Tina Martinelli and Max Campbell have a history unresolved and a future unplanned. Tina is in Kirkwood Lake only as long as it takes for her to sort out her burnt out cafe and help out the Campbell family while the patriarch deals with a severe return of his cancer. Max is back from his time in the army to do the same. The big question is who will stay and will they find peace, faith and love?
I really enjoyed this novel. Though I found some of the emotional strife a little bit self imposed on the characters (as indeed it turns out some of it is!). A nice seasonal read if you are looking for some Christmas cheer!