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review 2017-10-03 16:56
Up Chit Creek (Kira Callahan Mystery) (V... Up Chit Creek (Kira Callahan Mystery) (Volume 1) - Catherine Astolfo

Up Chit Creek Series: Kira Callahan Mystery By Catherine Astolfo
Kira works at the retirement center where most everybody has a memory issue and are old.
She finds a dead man with a woman sitting nearby, knife sticking out of the man's back.
Her older sister owns and run the center. Sheriff and deputies come out but it's hard to question those who don't respond due to their illnesses.
Love hearing about the rooms available in the mansion for the residents to use. Liked learning about others past and the history of the town.
It's a bit confusing to keep track of them all.
Kira is involved in finding clues, by listening or asking questions of others...
She confides in George, her boyfriend and he has more suggestions as more pass away...
Adult sex scenes. Loved the Leonard Cohen lyrics, priceless! Author bio at the end along with other works.
Free from Smashwords

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review 2017-03-21 02:10
The Idea Of You
The Idea of You - Amanda Prowse


Title: The Idea Of You
Author: Amanda Prowse
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Reviewed By: Arlena Dean
Rating: Five
Review:

"The Idea Of You" by Amanda Prowse

My View:

A good read that covered 'parenthood and family.' The author gives the reader quite a story that dealt with Lucy, Jonah[newly married] and Camille who was her step-daughter[coming to live with them]. But for some reason or another Camille took a instant dislike toward Lucy. Now, why was that? I found this read very tear grabbing with all that came out of this very intriguing emotional read. The characters were developed but also complex and complicated with human needs and wants. The author brings all of this out in such a unique way giving the reader such a heartbreaking read that you could feel as you are drawn into this emotional story. Will this marriage be able to stand against all of the trauma that they were going through especially with Lucy wanted most of all to become a mom? From the letters from Lucy's POV being full of emotions and then finding out what was the reason for them being presented was so very important and the up and down of feelings were so very important in this read. How was Lucy's relationship with her mom and sister? Were these insecurities and conflicts normal for Lucy and Camille? Yes, there was heartbreak with devastating effects of the ultimate loss, but also there was 'love, hope, courage and family.' I found that this author delivers to the reader not only the right characters to deliver such a important story but also does a wonderful job at giving the readers the right words that could only help one truly understand just what one goes through at a time like this. What will happen as this family has problems with 'anger, guilt, pain, and past secrets that will come out ['is what they don't have worth risking losing what they do have?']
and threaten all that this marriage as been built on? This is where I say you will have to pick up this emotional and challenging "The Idea Of You" to see how well this author presents it all out to the reader to see what Lucy gets as the end. This author really works this story so well with covering the subjects: 'miscarriage, [suffered a loss or infertility], teen pregnancy and relationship breakups.'

By the end the reader will gets a 'poignant love story that carries hope, love and forgiveness for all if it can only be accepted' as this love grows ever so stronger as it is given and received so freely. This is definitely a wonderful story of the ray of hope, happiness and love that needs to be heard every single day!

Thank you to Netgalley, lake union publishing and Amanda Prowse for the opportunity to read this book for an honest review. This novel was well done by this author!

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review 2017-03-21 01:07
Always
Always: A Novel - Sarah Jio


Title: Always
Author: Sarah Jio
Publisher: Ballantine
Reviewed By: Arlena Dean
Rating: Four
Review:

"Always" by Sarah Jio

My Thoughts...

What a interesting read that seemed to have blended the past and the present together into one good read about Kailey Crain, Cade McAllister, once the love of her life and now her fiancee, Ryan.
For ten years Cade had been missing but Kailey finds him by giving a meal outside a restaurant to the homeless person only to find out that was Cade who had disappeared. The story will go back and forth until Kailey decides to look for him and again finds him and with a friend helps get him into a program discovering he had traumatic head injuries. Now, will this present problems with her fiancee? There will be a lots of things going on in this story with Kailey that seems like a lots of dishonesty in how she really felt about Cade but did she tell Ryan how she really felt? Was she really being truthful with Ryan or keeping a secret? Was Kailey really in love with Ryan...her fiancee or her ex boyfriend...Cade? Well, to find out all the answers to these and many more questions you will have to pick "Always" and see how it comes out. Be prepared for a good love story with lots of 'twist and turns, mystery, forgiveness, turmoils, loss, and drug abuse' with a some predictability, but still a good read. This author did a good job at looking at the homeless and mentally ill who many find themselves on the streets. I will say that ending was a little strange but I know anything can happen as it will for Kailey as 'no one forgets their first love, good or bad' and especially second chance romances.

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review 2017-03-08 22:59
Strawberry Wine
Strawberry Wine - Darly Jamison

Title: Strawberry Wine
Author: Darly Jamison
Publisher: Zebra Shout
Reviewed By: Arlena Dean
Rating: Five
Review:

"Strawberry Wine" by Darly Jamison

My Viewpoint...

Looking for a novel with a romance with lots of twist and turns that will definitely keep you wondering what will happen next...then you are at the right place for "Strawberry Wine" will give it all to you. I liked how this author was able to give us a emotional story that was told using 'flashbacks' of a first love and heartache. So, what will happen as Addy and Jake meet again in this small town and rediscover that their is still a bond between them?

The main characters...Addison [Addy] and Jake gives the readers one sweet love story. Getting these two together was simply a work of art. I liked how this author gives the reader a witty banter which gives us a delightful read that felt so real and how this story deals with the prologue, then the past, the present and then on to the epilogue. Yes, this story will skip around so be aware of that and in the end you get these two peoples story being told so well that you can even 'smell the intoxicating strawberry wine.' This is one read that you may find yourself tearing up, smiling and also laughing!

Many of the other characters were all well developed and relatable but one of my favorite people was Addy's grandmother, Mags who was a 'serious matchmaker, cook extraordinaire and a advice dispenser all rolled up into one' giving the reader a intriguing read that you will keep turning the pages until the end. Oops, I don't want to leave out another character I liked and that brought a lots to the read and that was Ruby.

"Strawberry Wine" will give the reader a sweet and spicy love story of how Addy and Jake 'navigate through tender moments and heartbreaks of their romantic love' all tied together in one well written read.

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