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Search tags: Carla-Kelly
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review 2018-10-25 02:43
One of three stories. Sweet second chance/reunion story.
Convenient Christmas Brides - Carla Kelly,Louise Allen,Laurie Benson

I have read One Night Under the Mistletoe so far but look forward to reading the rest of the stories. One Night Under the Mistletoe was a touching second chance/reunion story. Juliet was hurt by Monty's rejection years earlier when a mistake by Monty leads to marriage. As they worked through their fears and pain, with truth between them, they find their way back into each others hearts. This was a wonderful read, tears included. I loved both characters. I highly recommend this story, which is the second story in the Sommersby Brides series.

I received an ARC of this story through the author, and this is my unsolicited review.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-07-29 01:48
One Step Enough
One Step Enough - Carla Kelly

My reviews are honest & they contain spoilers. For more, follow me:


One Step Enough is Carla Kelly’s latest release, and a sequel to her wonderful novel, My Loving Vigil Keeping. Book 1 was based on the 1900s Scofield mining disaster, but it also had a h and a H, whose lives entwined with the chaos of it all. Carla Kelly gave such vivid narratives of everything about a mining town, the lives of its inhabitants and how a tragedy can shatter hundreds of lives, that for me who had no idea about this disaster, it was an experience TBH!

My Loving Vigil Keeping was released in 2012 and I read it in 2015. Initially I thought it was 2017 but then I had to check the date of my review on goodreads to be sure. No wonder I had forgotten many intricate details of the story that had taken me time to remember! Don’t get me wrong, I remembered the story and what happened but this book had many characters so there were many details to remember, littlest things that seemed inconsequential at that time but had quite the profound meaning in book 2. I didn’t want to do a reread because I was too impatient to read One Step Enough. But can you blame me though? I thought book 1 ended very abruptly, yet, seeing the time that had passed since the publication, frankly I didn’t think there was any sequel planned for this book. I’m so glad that Ms. Kelly decided to give us another tour of Della and Owens’s life. I practically screamed when I saw One Step Enough on Amazon!

My Loving Vigil Keeping begins with the story of our h, Della Anders. She was an orphan whose father died, who had never met her mother but was told she ditched them when Della was an infant. At 12, after her father Frederick’s tragic death in a Colorado mine, Della came to live with her rich uncle Karl’s home only to find it no home of any kind. Frederick had loved her, and even poor, took care of her as best as he could but this house here was cold and cruel. Her aunt Caroline never took to her and found immense pleasure in taunting, berating or maligning Della to anyone she could find because she was poor; because her father was the proverbial family ‘blacksheep’ who brought ‘shame’ to the prominent Anders family; because she didn’t look like the tall and blonde Anders clan. But mostly because Della was illegitimate. Her tormentors included her two cousins as well. Della was never given a chance to mourn her father properly because Caroline forbade any such thing if she’s to live with them. Karl pretty much let his wife abuse the child and ignored it all so he himself can live in peace.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-06-10 10:23
Courting Carrie in Wonderland
Courting Carrie in Wonderland - Carla Kelly

My reviews are honest & they contain spoilers. For more, follow me:


I bought Courting Carrie in Wonderland last year, not sure why I didn’t read it right away. Carla Kelly’s books are auto-buy for me, and when I saw the cover, I wanted to read this one. Yet somehow I never got around to. So to amend that, I picked it up last week without reading any reviews, as I do for many of Ms. Kelly’s books. Have to wonder again, why I didn’t read it last year cause the story was simply amazing, heart-touchingly so!

TBH, I had no idea what ‘Wonderland’ in Courting Carrie in Wonderland stood for. I thought it was one of those titles with a touch of fancy, maybe the H and h went somewhere they liked calling wonderland? Seems like I was almost correct in that regard. This book is set in the Yellowstone National Park, a place I’ve never heard of (I don’t live in the US), which was known to be the Wonderland. Even while reading I didn’t check out anything in google. I just read on, seemingly trying to figure out the place through our H and h, Ramsay and Carrie’s eyes and Ms. Kelly’s narratives. I’ll be honest that I struggled to picture the Park and it’s specific attractions that were mentioned as they’re known: such as the Old Faithful, the Chittenden Bridge (previously the Melan Arch Bridge), the viaduct that linked the edge of the mountains creating a perilous road and many other descriptions of the scenery, the flora and the fauna. Even then I could tell it was a marvelous place. After I finished I couldn’t wait to find out how those noted areas looked like, and was blown away by the beauty of the Park. I could imagine why Ramsay and Carrie (or anyone for that matter) would love the place and want to stay there. Like, I had this urge to visit Yellowstone ASAP, though that dream may never materialize for me. :(

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review 2018-02-27 12:36
mixed stories
Regency Christmas Wishes - Carla Kelly,Christine Merrill,Janice Preston

Well as snow falls in Ireland Christmas stories are somewhat apt.

 

The first story is one of a Naval Captain who remembers a woman who nursed him when he fell ill. 10 years later he gets the letter he was waiting for, much of it water damaged, but the gist of the letter is that she says yes.  So he goes to find her and finds that things are more complicated than they seem.  There's a fair bit of miraclous happenings and literal deus ex going on in this but it's not a bad story overall

 

Her Christmas Temptation by Christine Merrill is an entertaining story of a rake who goes to break an engagement for his beloved cousin and finds that maybe his motives aren't so clear.  I really enjoyed this one.

 

Awakening his Sleeping Beauty by Janice Preston the Sleeping Beauty metaphor is stretched a little here but the story is good, an opressed heroine finding love and respect is always good.

 

Overall not bad and quite seasonally based, the last two are set during the 12 days of Christmas.

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review 2017-11-29 03:48
Full of tongue-in-cheek wit
Beau Crusoe - Carla Kelly

She smiled, and James felt his heart turn.

 

Lt. James Trevenen spent 5yrs marooned on an island.

Susannah Park married below her station, had her husband die before she even gave birth, and has been ostracized ever since.

 

Maybe because I recently read one of her books, this felt like a Balogh with some Milan. Y'all, the tongue-in-cheek humor and wit is top notch here. This is also told mostly from the hero's pov, which helped to give it a fresh spin.

 

"Maybe it's this way, son---when we have no choice, we may as well be brave."

 

James has PTSD from what he had to do to survive and thinks he is haunted by another survivor of the original shipwreck. James' story of survival is spread out throughout the story until we get the ultimate grizzly details of how he became the lone survivor. It's rough, disturbing, and courageous stuff to read and I enjoyed how the author didn't shy away from James' emotions.  He was a hero who was witty, courageous, strong, utterly capable, and kind; he's a sexy one.

 

Susannah plays a little bit of second fiddle to James but her calm, vulnerable, and solid demeanor made her a perfect complement to him. Her family dynamics were a secondary character that wonderfully filled this story with even more emotions and relationship nuances. I'm also not the biggest fan of children in stories but Susannah's son Noah was a fun character and their relationship and the one that develops between Noah and James was delightful.

 

The romance between James and Susannah started off as smoke that slowly but surely was tended into a sparking burning pleasing fire. They were such a lovely engaging couple to follow along with. The wit provides a lighter tone while James feeling haunted and Susannah coming back from scandal with society and her family (Susannah and her sister's relationship brought a tear to my eye at the end) provide the heavier emotional load. The secondary characters here add a lot and show how much a story can be enhanced when giving attention to the details. This was a refreshing, engaging, and just plain lovely story.

 

As she stood watching, he turned and blew her a kiss. You're a rascal, she thought.

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