Hello! Wherever you are today, I hope the weather is warm(er) and pleasant. We can all use a break from winter weather, especially our friends in Texas. In my portion of Pennsylvania, we had a day and a half of snow which amounted to my office (on the day job), closing one full day and delaying until noon on the second. I squeezed in a lot of reading last week, although the reviews I’m sharing today are of books I read earlier in the month. I’m still playing catch up with my reviews, so let’s get started!
by Jan Sikes
If you like your romantic reads with multiple layers, you’re sure to enjoy Ghostly Interference. Jan Sikes delivers the story of Jag and Rena who at first glance are polar opposites. He comes from a comfortable background and works in the computer industry, while Rena has been through a rough-and-tumble existence that included foster care. They say opposites attract, and in this case, the adage rings true. Both Rena and Jag have multiple hurdles to navigate on their road to a happily-ever-after. Sikes goes well beyond the trope of boy-meets-girl, delivering a plot that involves the spirit of Rena’s deceased brother, a magical rune, complex family dynamics, and the chance for her characters to embrace missed opportunities.
I particularly enjoyed the story line that took Jag from computer geek to musician and the inclusion of Damien. There’s a strong musical influence in this book. Not surprising given the author’s passion for, and inside knowledge of, the music industry. I also loved Rena finding Riley and her initial reaction to Jag digging into her past. The love of these two characters really shines through, especially during the closing climatic chapters.
Sikes delivers a polished read with excellent writing, characters who resonate with heart, and a plot that will leave you satisfied and happy.
Genre: Romance > Ghost Fiction > Fantasy Romance
by Jacquie Biggar
If you enjoy breezy romantic reads, you’ll fall in love with this novella worthy of the Hallmark Channel. Georgina life’s dream revolves around her small start-up company, but financial setbacks force her to partner with CLO for backing. Little does she know CLO’s representative, Rhys Turner, arrives with the intent of selling her company out from under her at the insistence of his father.
From Georgina’s and Rhys first disastrous meeting—she spills coffee over his expensive suit—sparks fly between these two. This is a boy-meets-girl romance with all the squabbling and tug-of-wars you’d expect before the HEA at the end, but as always, what sets Biggar’s books apart is her gift for witty banter, clever POV, deft writing, and spot-on characterizations. Toss in an adorable puppy and some son/father issues between Rhys and his dad, and you’ve got a feel-good story guaranteed to leave you with a smile. A pleasure to read by an author who is a master at her craft!
Genre: Romance > Romantic Comedy
Life is Like a Bowl of Cherries: Sometimes Bitter, Sometimes Sweet
by Sally Cronin
This is an entertaining collection of short stories with several poems scattered throughout. The book is grouped into topics such as Technology, Animal Magic, and Connections (to name a few) with stories and poems related to their header topics appearing underneath. It’s cleverly presented and cleverly written. All of the stories are winners but there were some that really stood out for me, including The Weekly Shopping, The Nanny, The Scratch Card, and The Night Shift.
In The Weekly Shopping we get a taste of what ordering groceries might be like with when we come to rely too much on technology. It’s both hilariously funny and worrisome at the same time. I loved the argument related to the cat!
In The Nanny, a young couple discover who is watching over their baby at night. The Scratch Card left me with a lump in my throat at the generosity of others, and The Night Shift made me appreciate the special love pets have for their owners and the kindness of those who appreciate that bond.
These stories are heartwarming and touching, with scattered poetry further enriching the sections. A lovely collection and a quick read, the stories will lodge in your heart and linger.
Genre: Two-Hour Short Reads > Short Stories and Poetry
P.S. I Love You More Than Tuna
by Sarah Chauncey
Beautifully illustrated and written, this short picture book will touch the heart of any cat lover, but it is geared toward those grieving the loss of a feline companion. I’ve lost several over the years, and thus felt compelled to pick this up even though my current rescue kitty is healthy and well.
P.S., I Love You More Than Tuna clearly depicts how kittens and cats enrich our lives, cover our hearts with paw prints, and never let go. It portrays all the joy, whimsy, and beautiful moments of sharing life with our special companions. I was in tears by the time I reached the final pages.
I am so glad I purchased this book, and can’t recommend it highly enough. I know I will go through the pages over and over again. It makes me cherish my cat, Raven, even more. For anyone who has ever loved and lost a cat, this book is a must!
Note: I bought the hardback copy. The illustrations are a treasure, and I was worried how they’d show on a Kindle. Considering the hardcopy isn’t even a dollar more, the decision was a no-brainer. 🙂
Genre: Pet Loss Grief
Thanks for joining me for another round of Tuesday Book Reviews. Just another week or two of playing catch-up with my reviews, and I can actually start sharing them as I finish the books.
I hope something today has caught your eye and is a candidate for your TBR. Thanks to all of these excellent authors for keeping me entertained. As always, I wish everyone happy reading!