Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Top 20 Books Of The Year!

2019 was an amazing year for books! I laughed.. I cried.. I got so angry I wanted to throw my kindle across the room.. I let out a lot of dreamy sighs.. and I loved every minute of it! I found new authors that I absolutely adore and wait with great anticipation for their next book baby to be released! I was able to read over 100 books!

Before I look ahead to the New Year and new books, I thought I would pay tribute to some of these favorites that I fell in love with in 2019. I will tell you that my list is not in any particular order. I absolutely LOVED all these books and there is NO WAY I'll be able to choose a ranking for them! It just is NOT possible! So don't even ask!

So... without further adieu... here are my TOP 20 of 2019!!










What are some of your favorites from 2019?
Monday, December 30, 2019

20 Tropes of 2020

While I was looking for Reading Challenge ideas, I came across one that was nothing but tropes. It sounded like a lot of fun so I thought what the heck! Let's do TWO Reading Challenges this year! 😊

So... without further adieu... I present to you my 20 Tropes of 2020!

1. Marriage of Convenience: Behind the Light of Golowduyn by Deborah M. Hathaway
2. Friends to Lovers: Faceoff by Rebecca Connolly
3. Enemies to Lovers: Perfectly Imperfect Us by Marika Ray
4. Single Parent: The Match by Sarah Adams
5. Second Chance at Love: Security Breach by Rebecca Deel
6. Secret Love: Believing in You by Jess Mastorakos
7. Beauty and the Beast: The Lost Letter by Mimi Matthews
8. Orphan: A Convenient Fiction by Mimi Matthews
9. Small Town: Moose Be Love by Jacqueline Winters
10. Food Fiction: The Enemy by Sarah Adams
11. Forbidden Love: The Book of Sorrel by Jennifer Peel
12. Spy/Agent of the Crown: Ten Seconds to Dead by L.A. Clayton
13. Matchmaking: Mending His Past by Kristen Iten
14. Military/Bodyguard: SEAL's Promise by Rebecca Deel
15. Return to Hometown: The Story of Us by Teri Wilson
16. Arranged Marriage: Rescuing Lord Inglewood by Sally Britton
17. Slow Burn: Romancing the Rake by Nichole Van
18. Best Friend's Brother/Sister: Lines We Cross by Marika Ray
19. Workplace Romance: Statistically Improbable by Jennifer Peel
20. Secret Identity: Pimpernel by Sheralyn Pratt

If you're a fan of any or all of these tropes, feel free to join me! If you do a blog post, make sure you share the link in the comments so I can add it to my post.

20 Tropes of 2020 Participants:

Katie's Clean Book Collection

Happy reading my fellow Book Dragons! 

2020 Reading Challenge

Happy New Year my fellow Book Dragons! Welcome to my 4th Annual Reading Challenge! Are you ready to see what I've chosen for this year's challenge? Yes? Sweet!

Allow me to share with you KJ's Book Nook 2020 Reading Challenge!

1. A book you meant to read in 2019: Faceoff by Rebecca Connolly
2. A book that won an award in 2019: The Dear Wife by Jennifer Peel
3. A book published in 2020: The Enemy by Sarah Adams
4. A book you haven't read by an author you love: Security Breach by Rebecca Deel
5. A book by a new to you author: Ten Seconds to Dead by L.A. Clayton
6. A book with 400 pages or more: A Modest Independence by Mimi Matthews
7. A book with 200 pages or less: Guarding the Princess by Marika Ray
8. A book with a beautiful cover: In Name Only by Jennifer Peel
9. A book you've read but haven't reviewed: TBD
10. A book set in a country you want to visit: Romancing the Rake by Nichole Van
11. A book with the letter "W" in the title: For the Lady of Lowena by Deborah M. Hathaway
12. A book with recipes inside: The Story of Us by Teri Wilson
13. A book you got for free: Christmas with You by Jess Mastorakos
14. A book that cost you more than $5: Promised by Leah Garriott
15. A book published in your birthday month: The Work of Art by Mimi Matthews
16. A book with a three word title: My Favorite Moosetake by Jacqueline Winters
17. A book that's been on your TBR list for 2+ years: Soul of Flame by Rebecca Ethington
18. A book you love that never fails to make you smile: Paige's Turn by Jennifer Peel
19. A book WITHOUT people on the cover: Country Hearts by Cindi Madsen
20. A book by an author's pen name: Falling for Your Best Friend's Twin by Emma St. Clair

Does this challenge sound like one you would love to try to accomplish? If so, feel free to join me! If you do a blog post, make sure you share the link in the comments so I can add it to my post.

2020 Reading Challenge Participants:

Sally Britton
Heidi Reads...

Happy reading my fellow Book Dragons!

More Trouble in Loveland by Jennifer Peel


Charlee Jensen-Carter has been looking forward to her first Christmas with her new husband, Ryan, and her adorable stepson for weeks. Not only is her dad tying the knot, but she’s looking forward to two weeks of no exes, no drama, and especially no trouble. At least that’s what she thinks.

First, she gets talked into wearing red hooker heels again. Next, she finds herself trying to save her dad’s wedding. And if that isn’t bad enough, more than one ex shows up, and she's suddenly in the middle of more trouble than she ever bargained for. On top of it all, everyone is counting on her to save the day.

Will she ever find the right moment to give Ryan the best Christmas present ever? Or will her Christmas hopes and dreams die a fiery death in this comical holiday tale?

My Review: 5 Stars

Charlee's life is a bit chaotic. Between her new hubby and adorable stepson, school, practicum, her dad and Felicity's wedding, exes, her friends and just life in general, she is wiped out! She's definitely looking forward to a nice first Christmas with Ryan and little Josh. But we all know how life with Charlee is.... cRaZy! And nothing, I repeat nothing ever goes as planned!

So it should be no surprise when trouble makes an appearance in more than one place. I mean, how bad can it get?! Well... this IS Charlee were talking about! Let's just say when more than one ex shows up, her dad is on the verge of calling off his wedding, those red hooker heels make another appearance and both their mom's crash their vacation, it has Charlee wishing she can whisk her two favorite guys away to a secluded island where no one can find them!

But in true Charlee form, she's determined to save the day... or die trying! Everything has to be perfect for her first Christmas with Ryan and Josh. One should never doubt a feisty, determined woman... ;)

*dreamy sigh*

Oh my gosh! Guys! I absolutely LOVED this book! I busted out laughing, growled in frustration, wanted to Gibbs slap people over and over and over again, let out little dreamy sighs and fell in love with Charlee, Ryan and little Josh all over again! This is such a fun and amazing addition to Trouble in Loveland! Eeeeeeeek! I can't wait to read it again!

I've said it before and I'll say it again... Ms. Peel is a natural when it comes to writing! Is it any surprise that she sucked me in from the beginning and didn't let me go until the end?! She has a way of writing that makes me feel like I am right there with her beloved characters experiencing everything they are! I can't wait to see what she has in store for us next!

And yes... I can still see these two as Charlee and Ryan! *dreamy sigh* 

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Return to Sender by Jennifer Peel


He never wanted to leave her. She never expected him to return.

If Ariana Stanton has learned anything in life, it's that men leave. She's been taught this lesson well from the father she's never met, who sends her a mysterious letter once a year, to her ex-fiancé, who left her for another woman. So, when she meets the charming and seemingly perfect Jonah, she promises him they will never be more than friends. It's a promise she can't keep. But before he has a chance to leave her, she sends him away.

Dr. Jonah Adkinson has one regret--that he let Ariana remain convinced that love never lasts. But now, nine years later, the single dad is back in Pine Falls and on a mission: prove Ariana wrong. He's determined to win over the love of his life. And this time he won't let anything get in the way, not even her.

Now, not only does Ariana have to face the man she's still in love with, but she must confront the mystery of her father's letters, forcing her to reevaluate the past and her choices. But will it be enough to make her believe that, unlike the letter she's always returned, Jonah is hers to keep?

My Review: 5 Stars

9 years ago Ariana Stanton made one of the hardest decisions of her life. She let Jonah Adkinson go. She broke all her rules when she fell in love with him. But in her mind, she wasn't enough for him. What mattered most was his happiness and if her past has taught her anything, it's that she doesn't have the ability to give him the love and happiness he deserves.

But now Jonah's back and he's ready to do what he should have done 9 years ago. Fight for Ariana. Fight for their love. Fight for their happiness. All these years, she's been the only thing missing in his life. His life is not complete without her in it. He and his adorable daughter, Whitney, need her more than ever. Jonah is determined to prove to Ariana that she's enough. Prove to her that she is loved and capable of loving in return. Prove to her that if anyone deserves a HEA, it's them. Is it going to be easy? Absolutely not. Is it going to be worth it? You better believe it.

*dreamy sigh*

Have you ever picked up a book and knew from the very beginning that you were going to love it? Or been so captivated that you lose all track of time? Forget to eat? Or finish a book only to have it stay with you for days afterwards? If the answer to any of those questions are yes, then you know exactly how I felt while reading Return to Sender. One minute, I'm sitting in my big comfy chair in my room and the next I'm in Pine Falls getting lost in all things Ariana, Jonah and Whitney.

Oh how I adored those three! They quickly became favorites of mine. Their journey was definitely not an easy one. They had to learn to have patience, to love unconditionally, to have courage, to be understanding of each other, to have enough strength to make the necessary changes, to have faith and hope that everything will work out the way it should in the end.

Y'all! Ms. Peel has done it again! Just when I think I've found my favorite book by her, she releases another one and I fall in love all over again. I honestly can't get enough of her books! I can't wait to see what she has in store for us next!

And of course I cannot forget my casting! I am in love with these two! What do you think?!

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

The Matrimonial Advertisement by Mimi Matthews


She Wanted Sanctuary...

Helena Reynolds will do anything to escape her life in London, even if that means traveling to a remote cliffside estate on the North Devon coast and marrying a complete stranger. But Greyfriar's Abbey isn't the sort of refuge she imagined. And ex-army captain Justin Thornhill--though he may be tall, dark, and devastatingly handsome--is anything but a romantic hero.

He Needed Redemption...

Justin has spent the last two decades making his fortune, settling scores, and suffering a prolonged period of torture in an Indian prison. Now, he needs someone to smooth the way for him with the villagers. Someone to manage his household--and warm his bed on occasion. What he needs, in short, is a wife and a matrimonial advertisement seems the perfect way to acquire one.

Their marriage was meant to be a business arrangement and nothing more. A dispassionate union free from the entanglements of love and affection. But when Helena's past threatens, will Justin's burgeoning feelings for his new bride compel him to come to her rescue? Or will dark secrets of his own force him to let her go?

My Review: 5 Stars

When you're in one of those dreaded reading ruts and not one, not two, but three bookish friends tell you to read a particular book, my advice to you would be... READ IT! 

Justin Thornhill is in need of a wife. But finding one in a small, middle of nowhere town is proving to be impossible. Especially when the towns people won't go anywhere near him or his home. When his steward suggests a matrimonial advertisement, he agrees as long as the woman understands it's simply a business arrangement. 

Helena's life has been turned upside down and there's no one left to be her advocate. Her only option is to runaway to a cliffside estate and marry a complete stranger. But anything is better than living in the nightmare she's been living in for two years. A business arrangement sounds perfect to her. 

From the first moment Justin and Helena met, there was an instant connection. The more time they spend together, the closer they become. Both are secretly falling in love with the other. 

But when Helena's past finally catches up with her and takes them back to London, Justin finally sees how different they are. Will their differences be too much to overcome? Or will their love prove to be stronger than any obstacle they have to face?

*dreamy sigh*

I absolutely adored Justin and Helena! They were absolutely perfect for each other. Both of them had past struggles that needed to be dealt with and together they were able to overcome them. It definitely was not an easy road for them but there was nothing about their story that I would have changed.

I started The Matrimonial Advertisement right before I went to bed. Had it not been for my kindle constantly hitting me in the face (I was exhausted), I probably would've read WAY past my bedtime. But alas, I only got through chapter one that night. And when I woke up earlier than usual the next morning because my room was chilly, do you think I turned on my heater and rolled back over in bed? Nope! I turned on my heater and grabbed my kindle! I was completely hooked. I found myself sneaking in reading time whenever I could. I could not put this book down! I was constantly on the edge of my seat wondering what would happen next.

This is my first book by Ms. Matthews and I can already tell you it will not be my last! I have already one-clicked the other books in the series and have pre-ordered the last one. I cannot wait to dive back into her books! 

And of course I cannot forget my casting! I love these two! What do you think?!

Friday, December 6, 2019

27 Ways to Mend His Broken Heart by Shari L. Tapscott


Heal him so you can steal him.

Before I begin, I need to be clear about one thing: Kyle was mine first. My best friend since fourth grade. My shoulder to cry on. My everything. And then during our senior year of high school, Ava waltzed into the picture and won his heart.

I asked Ava to marry me. (Spoiler—she said no.)

How do you move on after five years? If it weren’t for Kaylee, I don’t know what I’d do. I know she was only trying to cheer me up when she concocted the idea of the list, but why not give it a try? Ava has certainly moved on.

I’ve never seen Kyle so destroyed. The list was supposed to be a joke, something to make him smile. Then I realized what it really is—an opportunity. By the time I’m finished with him, Kyle will be over Ava, and he’ll be head-over-heels for yours truly.

I trust Kaylee, and if she thinks the list will help, then I’m all in. She’s not like other girls—she doesn't plot and scheme, or have ulterior motives. What you see is what you get. A guy couldn’t ask for a better best friend…

My Review: 5 Stars

You guys! Can someone please tell me why in the world I waited so long to read this book?! Please?! Anyone?!

*dreamy sigh*

I loved this book! Once I started it, I had the hardest time putting it down! Does that sound familiar? It should because the same thing happened when I read 27 Ways to Find a Boyfriend. I found myself sneaking in reading whenever I could. I may or may not have been reading while walking mail to the mailbox at work today. Okay... who I am kidding?! I totally did that! And I regret nothing! ;) Hehe.

But I digress... 

Kaylee and Kyle were perfect for each other! I absolutely adored them! I'm a sucker for best friends to lovers trope and this one did not disappoint! I still wanted to Gibbs slap Kyle several times throughout the book though. That man drove me crazy! Haha. But once he finally opened his eyes and figured out what he wanted... watch out! *swoon* Their chemistry was off the charts! I could not get enough of Kaylee and Kyle!

Just like in the first book, I really enjoyed the side characters. Isaac was a great addition and I'm looking forward to reading his book next. I'm secretly hoping that Heath and Savannah get a book. There's definitely a story there. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and putting it out in the universe. It could happen, right?! ;)

Ms. Tapscott is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. I seriously need to read more of her books! I can't wait to see what she has in store for us next! 

And y'all know that no review of mine is complete without the casting. I happen to love these two! What do you guys think?!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Chasing Home by Kacey Linden


Two wounded hearts haunted by the same tragedy… Will they get a second chance at love?

For Rory Ellis, life is pretty much perfect. She’s a confident, successful business owner with a career she loves, two adorable little boys, and a family home filled with happy memories.

At least, that’s what she wants everyone in her hometown of Echo Creek to believe.

But Rory’s past has been anything but perfect. When her house burns down—nearly taking the life of a teenage girl—the aftermath threatens to expose secrets she thought were buried forever. Haunted by guilt, Rory can’t seem to move on, let alone rebuild her life and provide a new home for her two young sons. Not when she’s surrounded by reminders of everything she’s lost and everything she’ll never have—like gorgeous rancher Jake Cunningham.

Jake knows what it’s like to live with guilt over circumstances he can’t change. He also knows he should stay away from the beautiful owner of Echo Creek’s coffee shop, but he can’t seem to help himself. Especially not when Rory is homeless, hurting, and in need of help she isn’t willing to ask for.

Both Jake and Rory are searching for redemption, but they have a history too complicated to ignore. Can these two broken hearts find refuge in each others arms? Or will the past they’ve tried so hard to forget conspire to keep them apart forever?

My Review: 5 Stars

Growing up in the foster care system, Rory never felt love, never learned how to trust, never knew what it meant to belong. But all that changed when Victoria Ellis entered into her life. She took in the troubled girl and gave her everything she could ever want, including her last name. For the first time in her life, Rory was happy.   

Life only got better when she met her best friend, Drew Cunningham. They were inseparable and Rory spent countless hours out at his family's ranch. But from the moment she met Jake, she knew that there was something special about Drew's quiet older brother. She was drawn to him from the beginning but kept her love for him to herself. Little did she know that Jake felt the exact same way about her. 

Nothing could have prepared them for the night they lost Drew or for the feelings of guilt they each would have from events that lead up to the tragedy. Neither Rory or Jake could face what happened. Running away and bottling those secrets up seemed to be the only way they could deal with everything. 

But years later, when tragedy strikes again, they both realize that enough is enough. If they are ever going to heal and move on, they will need to face the truth of the past and come to terms with what really happened. Will their love for each other and the hope for a future together give Rory and Jake the courage they need to overcome the past and finally get the HEA they all deserve?

I absolutely adored this book! I fell in love with Rory and Jake from the moment I met them in Christmas in Echo Creek. You knew they shared a past, you knew they shared love, but nothing in that book could ever prepare you for the demons that they both had been fighting all these years. The feels are most definitely real in this book and I loved every minute of it! 

Chasing Home is a heart-wrenchingly beautiful love story about two people who have been affected by the same tragedy and their struggle to not only come to terms with it, but to move forward and face the future together.

This series is quickly becoming a favorite of mine! Ms. Linden has captured my attention for sure. I can't wait to see what she has in store for us next! 

And of course I can't forget my casting. I absolutely LOVE these two! What do you think?!

2019 Swoony Awards... Let the Voting Begin Y'all!

'Ello our fellow Book Dragons! Guess what time it is?! It's VOTING TIME for the Swoony Awards! Are you excited?! Are you ready to vote?! I know we are!

But before you start voting.... let's review!

Are you new and wondering what the Swoony Awards are? Check out our updated 2019 Swoony Award post here!

Are you wondering who the Swoony Awards Hosts are? Check out our Introduction post here!

Are you wondering which books are eligible this year? Check out our REFERENCE list here! Or you can check out the running list on our blog here!

If you've read any eligible books that you don't see on our list, please feel free to let me know and I'll get them added.

Where can you go to vote?    

I'm so glad you asked! ALL the voting will be done through our Google form this year. We will NOT be counting any of the "votes" on our Goodreads reference list. Voting will be open from December 1-31, 2019. Click the link below to start voting!

And just in case you're wondering, here's all the ways to stay updated on all things Swoony!

Instagram: SwoonyAwards
Pinterest: The Swoony Awards

We want to say THANK YOU to everyone who has participated so far! The Swoony Awards would not be possible without you guys! You guys ROCK! 

If you have friends that you think would enjoy being apart of the Swoony Awards, please invite them to join us! Help us get the word out about clean, secular fiction!

Happy reading our fellow Book Dragons!