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review 2017-12-20 23:02
Christmas in Destiny
Christmas in Destiny: A Destiny Novel - Toni Blake
Shane's father died and on his deathbed told Shane he needed to go to Destiny. Since he was driving to Miami for a job, Shane decides to stop off and try to figure out why his dad wanted him to go there. So, snow happens and he wrecks his truck. The closest house happened to belong to Candice. 
Candice had her heart broken 5 years ago. Since then she's become somewhat of a recluse, working from home, not too involved in the town of Destiny. Although, that was slowly changing before Shane's arrival, she became more involved after. 
This started out slow for me. By around page 70ish I know who Shane was going to turn out to be. I thought Candice was too moopey and she gave her ex way too much power. BUT, the characters and this small town keep me reading anyway. Characters from previous books make appearances. Grampy and Edna! Anita and Walter! I loved how Shane jumped in and helped. He fit in.
By the end of the book, I liked Candice more. I did think the ending was rushed and would have liked more there. I still cried; happy tears. 
I was glad to see this book (had thought series ended at book 6- 3 years ago).
 
 

 

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review 2016-11-26 00:00
Sexy, Charming, Heartfelt Holiday Romance
Christmas in Destiny: A Destiny Novel - Toni Blake

He spoke low and sexy in her ear. “So you’re a good girl. That’s what I thought. On Santa’s nice list,” he added with a chuckle.
“Not tonight,” she promised him.

 

Christmas in Destiny was an absolutely charming, heartfelt–and surprisingly sexy–small town romance. Toni Blake always spins a tale that makes me chuckle and cheer on the down-to-earth characters she creates and this holiday-themed book did exactly that.

 

I have to say that I really loved the time I got to spend in Destiny, Ohio, in this book and of course with all of the offbeat people who reside there. I’m fairly new to the series (although I’ve read other books by Blake) but I found it quite easy to fall into the story. There were a lot of characters to keep track of, but Blake did a great job of weaving them in and explaining how they related to Candice and Shane’s journey.

 

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text 2016-07-05 19:01
Half Moon Hill By Toni Blake $1.99 Wonderful Book!
Half Moon Hill: A Destiny Novel (Destiny, Ohio) - Toni Blake

A rugged loner and ex-biker-gang member, Duke Dawson is looking for some peace and quiet while recovering from an accident. But when Anna Romo comes wandering through his woods and into his cabin, she completely rocks his world. The last thing he expected or wanted was to find himself hungering after a woman whose eyes held hurt even deeper than his own . . .

 

Running from a troubled past, Anna is building a new life in Destiny. When she first meets Duke, she's terrified—but something about him calls to her very soul. The hard-bodied rebel is soon helping her turn her new home into a bed and breakfast, and close quarters quickly lead them into her bed. Their passion is palpable, but can she convince a man who has turned his back on life to take the biggest leap of faith of all and fall in love?

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text 2015-10-21 16:07
Orchards in Romance Novels
A Season for Tending (Amish Vines and Orchards Series #1) - Cindy Woodsmall
The Fig Orchard - Layla Fiske
The Charmer (Assassins Guild #1) - C.J. Archer
Conor's Way - Laura Lee Guhrke
Sugar Creek (Destiny, Ohio Series #2) - Toni Blake
Sunrise Point (Virgin River, #19) - Robyn Carr
Miss Westlake's Windfall - Barbara Metzger
The Lemon Orchard - Luanne Rice
By Lori Foster Delicious [Mass Market Paperback] - Lori Foster
Sweet Hush - Deborah Smith

As Fall settles in, it is apple season around here. 

 

It is easy to see a love story play out in the orchard. 

 

Here are some wonderful Romances set in Orchards.

 

 

1. The Fig Orchard by Layla Fiske

 

In an isolated, tradition-bound village high above the Jordan River, balancing delicately amidst age-old superstitions and religious orthodoxy, Nisrina Huniah, a fifteen-year-old girl, is torn between innocent imaginings and looming apprehensions as she marries a man she has never met – only to fall in love on the night they are wed. 

Her joy, short-lived, takes a heart-wrenching turn when the encroaching World War fiercely shatters her reality, propelling her on an unexpected journey where she develops unlikely friendships that ultimately alter her perception of herself and the world around her.

 

2. A Season for Tending by Cindy Woodsmall

 

Old Order Amish Rhoda Byler’s unusual gift and her remarkable abilities to grow herbs and berries have caused many to think her odd. As rumors mount that Rhoda’s “gift” is a detriment to the community, she chooses isolation, spending her time in her fruit garden and on her thriving canning business.  
 
Miles away in Harvest Mills, Samuel King struggles to keep his family’s apple orchard profitable. As the eldest son, Samuel farms with his brothers, the irrepressible Jacob and brash Eli, while his longtime girlfriend Catherine remains hopeful that Samuel will marry her when he feels financially stable.  

 

3. The Charmer by C.J. Archer

 

andsome. Charming. Devastating. He was the last man she needed, but the only one she wanted. 

Orlando Holt has never assassinated a woman before. The lovely, feisty Lady Lynden will be his first. She's supposed to be a vicious murderess, but when Orlando begins to have doubts, he sets out to discover the identity of the person who hired him. What he learns will turn his world upside down, and propel him headlong into love with a woman who's immune to his charms. 

Twice widowed by the age of twenty-four, Lady Susanna Lynden has had enough of charming men. Her last husband knew all the right things to say to get her to the marriage bed…then made her life miserable. Money may be scarce and her house falling down around her, but the exotic fruit from her orange trees will keep poverty away. Except someone is thwarting her at every turn. Someone who may even want her dead. 

 

4. Conor's Way by Laura Lee Guhrke

 

Olivia Maitland needs a man. Determined to hang onto her family’s Louisiana farm no matter what, Olivia knows she needs a big, strong man to help her, a man who’s not afraid of hard work. But in the aftermath of the Civil War, men like that are hard to come by, and when she finds ex-boxer Conor Branigan lying unconscious in the road, Olivia takes him in, even though the hard, brawling Irishman isn’t exactly what she had in mind, especially when he ignites a passion in her she’s never felt before.
Conor knows what it’s like to pour all your hopes, dreams, and sweat into a piece of land only to have it come to nothing. He’d already seen his family destroyed and their lands taken during the Irish famine when he was a boy, and he has no intention of sticking around long enough to watch a corrupt man with power do the same thing to Olivia. But she and her three adopted daughters touch dreams in Conor he thought he’d forgotten long ago. Can he let go of the bitterness of his past and make a new future with Olivia? Can he believe in love again, or is it just too late for his cynical heart?

 

5. Sugar Creek by Toni Blake

 

Rachel Farris returned to her childhood home with one mission in mind: get Mike Romo out of her family's apple orchard business and out of their lives. But hard-nosed and totally hot Mike, who happens to be the law in Destiny, is convinced the Farris clan stole the land from his family fifty years ago and he's not backing down. Even when shapely trouble shows up in a pair of designer blue jeans. However, neither the hunky cop nor the sexy prodigal hometown girl can anticipate the electricity that heats things up whenever they're together—adding new sizzle to an ongoing feud that's raged for generations, and soon putting both their hearts at risk.

 

 6. Delicious by Lori Foster,  Lucy Monroe, and Sarah Title
 
With a full moon hanging over the apple orchards of Delicious, Ohio, romance is in the air, and three couples are about to experience the magic of falling in love. 

Down on Jonathan Avenue, the shy proprietor of the quaint bookstore can't seem to keep her fantasies about a famous writer to herself. While at The Old Orchard Inn the tempting smell of spiced hot cider lures an out-of-town investor to investigate the magnetic attraction of his sultry but strangely old-fashioned manager. And over at Apple of My Pie a play-by-the-rules accountant wants much more than tasty treats from the pop up food truck's capricious baker. 
 
7. Sunrise Point by Robyn Carr
 
ormer marine Tom Cavanaugh has come home to Virgin River, ready to take over his family's apple orchard and settle down. He knows just what the perfect woman will be like: sweet, decent, maybe a little naive. The marrying kind.

Nothing like Nora Crane. So why can't he keep his eyes off the striking single mother?

Nora may not have finished college, but she graduated with honors from the school of hard knocks. She's been through tough times and she'll do whatever it takes to support her family, including helping with harvest time at the Cavanaughs' orchard. She's always kept a single-minded focus on staying afloat…but suddenly her thoughts keep drifting back to rugged, opinionated Tom Cavanaugh.

Both Nora and Tom have their own ideas of what family means. But they're about to prove each other completely wrong.…
 
8. Miss Westlake's Windfall by Barbara Metzger
 
Ada Westlake has turned down Viscount Ashmead—again, convinced that a marriage of convenience would ruin their perfect friendship. She then also fails to latch onto the fortune in coins she finds in her apple orchard, assuming it is tainted money. Though the viscount knows something about that money, he can’t possibly tell Ada, and so he watches her try to dispose of it—without much luck…
 
9. The Lemon Orchard by Luanne Rice
 
It’s been five years since Julia’s daughter died. When she arrives to housesit at her uncle’s home in Malibu, she longs only for peace. But to her surprise, Julia becomes drawn to Roberto, the handsome man from Mexico who oversees the lemon orchard. When Roberto reveals his own heartbreak, Julia recognizes his pain, but their stories have one striking difference: Roberto’s daughter was lost—and never found.

 

 

10. Sweet Hush by Deborah Smith

 

Her Harvard-student son just eloped with the First Daughter. CNN is parked on the road to her apple orchards. Secret Service agents have commandeered her country kitchen. The irate First Parents are threatening to have her taxes audited. The President's handsome, tough, ex-military nephew is setting up camp in her guest room. Hush McGillan's quiet Appalachian world of heirloom apples, country festivals, and carefully guarded family secrets has just been flipped like one of her famous Sweet Hush Apple Turnovers. What do you do when your brand-new-in-laws are the First Family, and they don't like you any more than you like them? And what happens next when you find yourself falling in love with the man they sent to unearth all your secrets?

 

Have more? Vote on my Goodreads list! Orchards in Romance Novels 

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text 2015-08-03 16:02
Cats in Contemporary Romance
The Nerd's Pocket Pets (The Morrison Family - Book 4) - D.R. Grady
Sweet Dreams - Kristen Ashley
Geek with the Cat Tattoo - Theresa Weir
Beast - Pepper Pace
Wallbanger - Alice Clayton
Night Magic - Karen Robards
Long Time Gone - Meg Benjamin
Whisper Falls - Toni Blake
Back in Black - Lori Foster
Purrfect Voyage - Ruth J. Hartman

It should come as no surprise that I love cats. 

 

Cats in romance novels are wonderful too. There should be more of them. I especially love it when the hero has a cat. Real men love cats. 

 

Here are some wonderful Contemporary Romance Novels with Cats!

 

My lists are never in any particular order. Enjoy!

 

1. Sweet Dreams by Kristen Ashley Hero (big tough biker) has a kitty. 

 

Lauren Grahame has spent her whole life thinking something special was going to happen. She didn’t know what it was, she just knew it would one day be hers. But she learned the hard way that special wasn’t on offer.

So, after divorcing her cheating husband, Lauren searched for nothing special and she thought she found it when she landed a job as a waitress in a biker bar in Carnal. It was perfect: a nothing job in a nowhere bar in Nowheresville.

Then Tatum Jackson walked in. Part-owner of the bar, he took one look at high-class Lauren and wanted nothing to do with her. And he made this known, loudly.

Tate’s angry insults seared in her brain, Lauren decides the feeling is mutual and she doesn’t want anything to do with the gloriously handsome Tate Jackson. The clash of the bartender and barmaid begins but, even though Tate makes his change of mind clear (in biker-speak, a language Lauren is not fluent in), Lauren is intent on going her own way.

Until a serial killer hits Carnal and Lauren finds out Tate isn’t a bartender, he’s a bounty hunter. He stakes his claim for Lauren before he goes on the hunt for a killer but Laurie doesn’t speak biker nor does she understand bounty hunters and Tate comes back from the hunt to find his old lady has moved on.

Life throws curveball after curveball at Laurie and Tate as secrets are revealed, women are brutally murdered, Tate leads Lauren to special and Laurie tries to find her inner biker babe.

 

2. The Nerd's Pocket Pets by D.R. Grady Tiny Kitty

 

Shelby Conroy has always had this thing for Mr. Clean and now she’s met his look-a-like. Sam Welby is an oncology pediatrician, former Navy SEAL, and all around yummy man. Except she’s supposed to be working for him, not drooling over him. Sam has managed to fight his attraction to Shelby so far, but he’s a little confused as to why her lab coat pockets wriggle.

 

3. Geek with the Cat Tattoo by Theresa Weir 

 

Beauty and the geek… 

Shy music geek Emerson Foshay breaks into a cold sweat and is rendered speechless whenever Lola Brown, the girl of his dreams, steps into his guitar shop. But once a stray cat named Sam follows him home, everything changes and Emerson becomes the coolest guy in town. 

 

4. BEAST by Pepper Pace

 

Interracial fairytale is the story of Beast; a marine with a destroyed face and a plus sized beauty who has identity issues. A lesson learned is that beauty is not what is on the outside...In this romance that is taken from the Beauty and the Beasts' fairytale, it will leave you questioning 'who is the beauty and who is the Beast?' 

 

5. Wallbanger by Alice Clayton

 

Caroline Reynolds has a fantastic new apartment in San Francisco, a Kitchen Aid mixer to die for, and no O (and we’re not talking Oprah here, folks). She has a flourishing design career, an office overlooking the bay, a killer zucchini bread recipe, and no O. She has Clive (the best cat ever), great friends, a great rack, and no O. Adding insult to O-less, she also has an oversexed neighbor with the loudest late-night wallbanging she’s ever heard. Every moan, spank, and—was that a meow?—punctuates the fact that not only is she losing sleep, she still has—yep, you guessed it—no O. Enter Simon Parker. When the wallbanging threatens to literally bounce her out of bed, Caroline, clad in sexual frustration and a pink baby-doll nightie, confronts her heard-but-never-seen neighbor. Their late-night hallway encounter has…well…mixed results. Because with walls this thin, the tension’s gonna be thick. A delicious mix of silly and steamy, this is an irresistible tale of exasperation at first sight.

 

6. Night Magic by Karen Robards Hero is allergic and they are on the run. 

 

Romance writer Clara Winston dedicates her newest book to her cat, Puff, without knowing what havoc she is about to unloose on her placid (boring?) life. Because there’s a rogue CIA agent out there whose code name is Puff, and some very bad guys want to kill him. When the bad guys show up at mild-mannered Clara’s house, thinking that she can lead them to the man they’re hunting, she is rescued by that man, disgraced CIA agent Jack McClain. Jack is green-eyed, black-haired, infuriatingly macho—and every bit as sexy as the romantic heroes she’s always writing about. Clara hates him on sight, but if she wants to survive he is the only game in town. With Puff very reluctantly in tow, they go on the run for their lives, battling each other until the sizzling chemistry between them explodes into red-hot passion.

 

7. Long Time Gone by Meg Benjamin

 

Erik Toleffson wasn’t looking to become Chief of Police. He’s got enough trouble trying to rebuild his relationship with his three brothers who, until just recently, ran the other way when he approached. He’s not the bully they grew up with, but bad memories are tough to overcome. 

 

Morgan Barrett is as worn out as a vat full of crushed grape skins. She never planned to run Cedar Creek Winery, but there’s no one else to shoulder the load as her father recovers from an injury. All she needs is a little sleep. Just a five-minute nap in the booth at the Dew Drop Inn…if that guy across the bar would stop staring at her as if putting her head down on the table is a crime.

 

After Morgan yawns in Erik’s face, there’s nowhere to go but up. With time, though, their relationship warms like a perfectly blended Bordeaux. Until the shady mayor digs into Erik’s past and dredges up information that could drive a permanent wedge between him and his brothers—and sour any chance of a future with Morgan.

 

8. Whisper Falls by Toni Blake

 

Tessa Sheridan came crawling back to her quaint hometown of Destiny after her big-city interior design career crumbled. Now not only must she struggle to make ends meet, but she has to contend with a biker next door and the roar of Harleys shattering the serenity of her cabin in the woods by Whisper Falls.

 

Worse still, her sexy, bad boy neighbor makes her feel breathless and weak—and shy, petite Tessa knows what a major mistake it would be to get involved with someone so . . . dangerous. 

 

They say that former teen rebel Lucky Romo has a dark, secret past—that he’s trouble with a capital "T." Still, Tessa feels all tingly when she sees how well he fills out a pair of tight jeans. And when Lucky invites her into his world, she knows the intense heat sparking between them could lead her somewhere wild and wonderful . . . and, yes, dangerous!

 

9. Back in Black by Lori Foster

 

Gillian is a PR expert hired to smooth out the rough edges on hot- headed sports club president Drew Black. He's rough, raw and ready for any challenge Gillian throws his way. But which one's going to end up on top?

 

10. Purrfect Voyage by Ruth J. Hartman

 

Kitty Carter is used to getting into strange situations when she chases her cat, Arthur. But this latest escapade is just too much! When Arthur chases a mouse at the marina while she's doing research for her book, she follows him down the dock and onto a yacht. Not entirely her plan, since she falls down some stairs and hits her head, and wakes to find herself out to sea. And she and Arthur aren’t the only ones on board!

 

Did I miss your favorite? Let me know! Vote for the best kitty in Contemporary Romance on my Goodreads list: Cats in Contemporary Romance 

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