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SEPTEMBER - "CYPRESS POINT" by Diane Chamberlain†- A novel about the power to heal...and the power to change. It is not a love Joelle D'Angelo would ever have chosen. But it is one she can't deny. Joelle D'Angelo's best friend, Mara, is left with brain damage after she suffers an aneurysm during the delivery of her son. Alone and grieving, Joelle turns to the only other person who understands her pain: Mara's husband, Liam. And what starts out as comfort between friends gradually becomes something more. Something undeniable. Now all Joelle needs is a miracle. Torn by guilt and the impossibility of her feelings for Liam, Joelle seeks help from someone she's not even sure she believes in - a healer named Carlynn Kling Shire. Joelle sets out to find Carlynn, knowing that Mara needs something conventional medicine can't supply. And hoping that if Mara is well, Joelle's feelings for Liam will end. Her search leads her to a mansion in Monterey, California, and into the life of a woman shrouded in mystery. And as Joelle is guided down an unfamiliar path by a woman who is clearly keeping her own secrets, she discovers that some love is doomed, while some love can survive anything.
OCTOBER - "PROSPECT STREET" by Emilie Richards†- When Faith Bronson's marriage ends abruptly, she finds her privileged life shattered. Only just beginning to face the lie she has lived, she finds sanctuary with her two children in the shabby Georgetown row house that's been in her mother's family for generations. This historic house harbors dark secrets of its own. When Faith takes steps to rebuild her ancestral home, she meets Pavel Quinn. Though he is connected to her past in stunning ways, his strong attraction to Faith is enough to convince him to keep silent . . . because the truth could drive her away forever.
NOVEMBER - "WATER FOR ELEPHANTS" by Sara Gruen†- An atmospheric, gritty, and compelling novel of star-crossed lovers, set in the circus world circa 1932. When Jacob Jankowski, recently orphaned and suddenly adrift, jumps onto a passing train, he enters a world of freaks, drifters, and misfits, a second-rate circus struggling to survive during the Great Depression, making one-night stands in town after endless town. A veterinary student who almost earned his degree, Jacob is put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie. It is there that he meets Marlena, the beautiful young star of the equestrian act, who is married to August, the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. He also meets Rosie, an elephant who seems untrainable until he discovers a way to reach her. Beautifully written, Water for Elephants is illuminated by a wonderful sense of time and place. It tells a story of a love between two people that overcomes incredible odds in a world in which even love is a luxury that few can afford.
DECEMBER - "MODOC - The Greatest Elephant On Earth" by Ralph Helfer†- This book was based on a true story, and I think it's one of the best ones that I've ever read! Bram, whose father was a circus elephant trainer, and Modoc were born the same hour of the same day. And except for a number of years, when the man who owned the circus sold Mo without Bram's knowledge,¬†they spent the next 78 years together and had many many adventures.
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JANUARY - "CHOSEN BY A HORSE" by Susan Richards - This is a true story and I loved it. The horse Susan Richards chose for rescue wouldn't be corralled into her waiting trailer. But Lay Me Down, a former racehorse with a foal close on her heels, walked right up that ramp and into Susan's life. Weak from malnutrition, Lay Me Down had endured a rough road, but somehow her heart was still open and generous. Then fate brought her into Susan's paddock, where she taught this brokenhearted woman how to embrace the joys of life despite the dangers of living. "Susan Richards thought she was rescuing a starved, abused and abandoned mare...turns out Lay Me Down was rescuing Susan Richards. An incredibly moving story, beautifully written and insightful." - The Roanoke Times
FEBRUARY- "OUTLANDER" by Diana Gabaldon - (Outlander Series #2) The year is 1945 and Claire Beauchamp Randall, a former British combat nurse, is on holiday in Scotland with her husband, looking forward to becoming reacquainted after the war's long separation. Like most practical women, Claire hardly expects her curiosity to get the better of her. But an ancient stone circle near her lodgings holds an eerie fascination, and when she innocently touches a corner of one of the giant boulders, she is hurtled backward in time more than two hundred years, to 1743.
MARCH - "VOYAGER" by Diana Gabaldon (Outlander Series #3) - Claire faces a possibility both fearsome and exhilarating. Having returned to her own time, pregnant and brutalized by her trip through the standing stones, she makes a new life for herself, training to become a doctor and raising her daughter, Brianna. But the passage of two decades does little to dim the memory of Jamie or the life they once shared; and the constant presence of Brianna, with her father's brilliant red hair and well-loved features, is a painful reminder of the past. Now Brianna is grown, and Claire learns that Jamie may have survived the bloody Battle of Culloden. Dare she risk another trip through the stones, a trip that easily could prove fatal? Will she even be able to find Jamie? And how can she leave behind her beloved daughter, knowing all too well they may never see each other again?
APRIL - "DRUMS OF AUTUMN" by Diana Gabaldon (Outlander Series #4) - Cast ashore in the American colonies, the Frasers are faced with a bleak choice: return to a Scotland fallen into famine and poverty, or seize the risky chance of a new life in the New World - menaced by Claire's certain knowledge of the coming Revolution. Still, a Highlander is born to risk - and so is a time-traveler. Their daughter, Brianna, is safe - they think - on the other side of a dangerous future, their lives are their own to venture as they will. With faith in themselves and in each other, they seek a new beginning among the exiled Scottish Highlanders of the Cape Fear, in the fertile river valleys of the Colony of North Carolina.
MAY - "THE DAY THE WORLD CAME TO TOWN - 9/11 in Gander Newfoundland" by Jim Defede - When thirty-eight jetliners bound for the United States were forced to land in Gander, Newfoundland, on September 11, 2001, due to the closing of United States airspace, the citizens of this small community and surrounding towns were called upon to care for the thousands of distraught travelers. Their response to this challenge was truly extraordinary. Oz Fudge, the town constable, searched all over Gander for a flight-crew member so that he could give her a hug as a favor to her sister, who managed to reach him by phone. Eithne Smith, an elementary-school teacher, helped the passengers sheltered at her school fax letters to loved ones all over the world. And members of a local animal protection agency crawled into the cargo holds of the jets to feed and care for all of the animals on the flights. These stories and hundreds more are beautifully rendered in "The Day the World Came to Town", the true account of a community that exemplifies love, kindness and generosity.
JUNE - "THE FIERY CROSS" by Diana Gabaldon (Outlander Series #5) The year is 1771, and war is coming. Jamie Fraser's wife tells him so. Little as he wishes to, he must believe it, for hers is a gift of dreadful prophecy - a time-traveler's certain knowledge. Claire's unique view of the future has brought him both danger and deliverance in the past; her knowledge of the oncoming revolution is a flickering torch that may light his way through the perilous years ahead - or ignite a conflagration that will leave their lives in ashes.
JULY - "MY SISTER'S KEEPER" by Jodi Picoult - Can a parent love too much? Or is too much never enough? Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate - a life and a role that she has never challenged...until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister - and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable, a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. A provocative novelÂ that raises some important ethical issues, My Sister's Keeper is the story of one family's struggle for survival at all human costs and a stunning moral parable for all time.
AUGUST - "FIRST THEY KILLED MY FATHER" by Loung Ung - One of seven children of a high-ranking government official, Loung Ung lived a privileged life in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh until the age of five. Then, in April 1975, Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge army stormed into the city, forcing Ung's family to flee and, eventually to disperse. Loung was trained as a child soldier in a work camp for orphans, her siblings were sent to labor camps, and those who survived the horrors would not beÂ reunited until the Khmer Rouge was destroyed. Harrowing, yet hopeful, Loung's powerful story is an unforgettable account of a family shaken and shattered, yet miraculously sustained by courage and love in the face of unspeakable brutality.
SEPTEMBER - "THE HORSES OF PROUD SPIRIT" by Melanie Sue Bowles - There are approximately seven million horses in the United States. Each year, over 70,000 end up going to slaughter. Hundreds of thousands more are abused, neglected, or abandoned by callous and irresponsible owners. With a heart as big as a pasture, Melanie Bowles takes some of these horses into her sanctuary called Proud Spirit. Here, horses that arrive listless and broken find a home where they finally know safety. The bond between horse and caretaker does not happen overnight. It hangs by a fine thread of trust, which the author earns with endless patience and a full commitment to the well-being of the horses in her care. The horses, some of which have suffered severe abuse, astound her time and again with their ability to trust, return the love they are given, and enjoy the companionship of other horses. You will meet an entire stableful of remarkable horses: Dusty, a young Thoroughbred who recovered from severe injuries to reveal a rambunctious personality and a knack for stealing hats; Maddy, an elderly mare, and Dancer, a gallant Appaloosa, both of whom had been isolated for years but whose ecstatic first acquaintance at Proud Spirit was, mysteriously, the reunion of two soul mates; Annie, a little sorrel mare who will break your heart with her weary kindness and who found peace, at last, under an old oak tree in a pasture at Proud Spirit; Wrangler, a Miniature whose premature separation from his dam turned him into a tiny tormentor. His rowdy innocence helped Marshal, a huge palomino Draft horse with neurological trauma, become playful and engaged as he educated Wrangler in horsy manners.Â The Horses of Proud Spirit is an homage to the spirit of these alluring creatures and a moving memoir of lessons learned in compassion, strength, and loss.
OCTOBER - "THE PAPER MARRIAGE" by Susan Kay Law - Ann McCrary has a ring on her finger, a wedding album on the shelf, and a marriage certificate in a drawer, but for twelve years she has not had a kiss from her husband or heard him say, "I love you." He has been in a coma since a tragic car accident, and now Ann is approaching forty, childless in the dream house they bought together, and wondering what the future can possibly hold for her. When she took her vows "in sickness and in health," she never imagined this. Tom Nash has just moved in next door with his teenaged daughter. Tom knows how to pitch a no-hitter - or at least he did in his glory days, before a blown shoulder took him out of the game permanently - but he's never been good with women. His purple-haired daughter, Mer, baffles him more than anyone. He's not sure how to handle her. She needs some maternal guidance, and she's not getting it from her self-absorbed mother. As Ann is drawn to Tom and his daughter, she steps out of the narrow space she's occupied for so long. There may be hope for a new life with her new neighbor, if Ann can reconcile the dividing lines between love and loyalty.
NOVEMBER - "TWENTY WISHES" by Debbie Macomber (Blossom Street) What do you want most in the world? Anne Marie Roche wants to find happiness again. At thirty-eight, her life's not what she'd expected - she's childless, a recent widow, alone. She owns a successful bookstore on Seattle's Blossom Street, but despite her accomplishments, there's a feeling of emptiness. On Valentine's Day, Ann Marie and several other widows get together to celebrate...what? Hope, possibility, the future. They each begin a list of twenty wishes, things they always wanted to do but never did. Anne Marie's list starts with: Find one good thing about life. It includes learning to knit, doing good for someone else, falling in love again. She begins to act on her wishes, and when she volunteers at a local school, an eight-year-old girl named Ellen enters her life. It's a relationship that becomes far more involving than Anne Marie intended. It also becomes far more important than she ever imagined. As Ellen helps Anne Marie complete her list of twenty wishes, they both learn that wishes can come true - but not necessarily in the way you expect.
DECEMBER - "THE ACTOR'S GUIDE TO MURDER" by Rick Copp - "Baby, don't even go there!" That was Jarrod Jarvis's catch phrase as the adorable, girl-crazy moppet on the eighties sitcom, Go To Your Room! It was a great ride until the tabloids caught the popular teen idol kissing another guy at the L.A. gay rodeo. "Gay" and "teen heartthrob" not exactly being career-making words at the time, Jarrod's star crashed harder than a Kathie Lee Gifford CD. Flash forward: Now happily living with his cop boyfriend, Charlie, and their dog, Snickers, in the Hollywood Hills, Jarrod's ready to hit the comeback trail...but he never imagines how fame will strike this time. At a reading with his psychic, Jarrod is disturbed to hear that someone close to him will be murdered and even more shocked when it turns out to be his best friend, Willard Ray Hornsby, also a former child star. When Willard is found face down in his own lap pool, the cops call it an accident, but Jarrod's far from convinced - and he's ready to play the Sherlock Holmes of West Hollywood to prove his conspiracy theory right. But what starts in curiosity soon becomes deadly serious. Willard was keeping some very weighty secrets and even more dangerous company. From a tattooed "body-work" specialist to Willard's formidable mother and her nefarious lover, everyone seems to have had a reason to want him out of the picture permanently. And when another body turns up, it's clear that in a town full of actors, somebody's playing the very convincing part of a killer. Now, among the hustlers and the wannabes, the boy toys, sadistic acting coaches, and the tabloid press, Jarrod's high-profile sleuthing is making him once more into a household name. Except this kind of publicity is a very bad thing - because Jarrod's newest fan is someone who doesn't want an autograph...he wants him dead.
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JANUARY -†"STEP ON A CRACK"†by Michael Ledwidge & James Patterson†- The nation has fallen into mourning after the death of a beloved former first lady. The most powerful people in the world gather in New York for her funeral - then the inconceivable occurs. Billionaires, politicians, and superstars of every kind are suddenly trapped within one man's brilliant and cold-blooded scenario. Detective Michael Bennett - father of ten - is pulled into the fray. As the danger escalates, Michael experiences a devastating loss: after fighting it for many years, his wife has succumbed to a terrible disease. As New York descends into chaos, he faces raising his ten heartbroken children alone - and rescuing thirty-four hostages. Day after day, Bennett confronts the most ruthless man he has ever encountered. As the entire world watches and the tension builds to a searing heat. Bennett has to find a way out - or face responsibility for a deadly debacle.
APRIL†-†"LIGHT OF THE MOON" by Luanne Rice†- Spurred by her mother's dying wish, Susannah Connolly has traveled from her lifelong home on the Connecticut shoreline to the fabled French Camargue, to see its famous white horses and find a mysterious saint linked to her family's history. An accomplished anthropologist, Susannah has always been confident of her ability to navigate anywhere on the globe. But in the wake of a failed love affair and grieving the loss of her mother, she is adrift and uncertain, seeking only time alone to dig deeply into the personal archaeology of her own life. American born Grey Dempsey had come to the Camargue as a journalist, fell in love with a†celebrated Romany rider, and suffered a devastating loss of his own. Now he operates a ranch as he struggles to raise his spirited but troubled young daughter, who, after a terrible night years ago, fears the horses she once loved.†Within their bittersweet private orbit, in the midst of the endless silvered marshlands, Susannah Connolly will find a part of herself she hadn't known she had lost. And here she will find herself embraced by a circle of strong and passionate women bound together by their abiding faith in the legendary slave-saint Susannah seeks and in the miracles she is said to still perform for those who believe. Yet old secrets swirl within the fog-shrouded landscape, betrayals that may be beyond the power of any saint, or supplicant, to repair.
MAY -††"VANISHED" by Karen Robards -†Seven years ago, Sarah Mason's five-year-old daughter vanished during an outing at a park in Beaufort, South Carolina. Despite a frantic search, little Lexie was never found, and Sarah was left to pick up the pieces of her shattered life and go on the best she could. Then, one hot August night, Sarah comes home to hear the phone ringing. When she picks it up, a child's terrified voice whispers, "mommy, help, come and get me..." The call is cut off, but not before Sarah's heart goes into overdrive: she is sure the voice belonged to Lexie. Five-year-old Lexie. The only person Sarah can count on to help her is Jake Hogan, her closest friend in the world. A former FBI agent, Jake is now a P.I., and though he is skeptical about the authenticity of the call, the attraction he feels for Sarah pushes him to help her. Their long friendship explodes into a romance as they try to find out what happened to Lexie. When the torment escalates to murder, Jake is the only one who can keep Sarah safe. Together, they are caught up in a nightmare search for Lexie that just might end with Sarah's death.
JUNE - "THE COURAGE TREE" by Diane Chamberlain†-†It was every mother's worst fear. Eight-year-old Sophie Donohue just wanted to be like every other little girl. Which is why her mother, Janine, reluctantly agreed to let her go on the weekend camping trip with her Brownie troop. But when Janine arrives to pick up Sophie after the trip, her daughter is not among the others. Somehow, along the forested route from West Virginia, Sophie has disappeared. Only worse. Sophie is no ordinary eight-year-old. She suffers from a rare disease, and Janine has recently enrolled her in an experimental treatment as a last effort to save her life - despite the vehement objections of her ex-husband, Joe, who believes conventional medicine is the only route to take. The only person to support Janine is Lucas Trowell, someone familiar with the herbs used in the treatment. Lucas has been encouraging Janine to keep Sophie in the program, and, indeed, the little girl has been showing remarkable improvement. All her mother's instincts tell Janine that Sophie is alive, but time is running out. Without her treatment, it's only a matter of days before Sophie's illness will claim her life. As Janine, Joe and Lucas embark on a desperate search to find Sophie, envy and suspicion grow between the two men,†casting doubts on each other's true motives for helping Janine. Deep in the forest, another drama unfolds, Sophie has found refuge in a remote cabin inhabited by a woman who wants nothing to do with the little girl. She's desperate to help her own daughter, who has been wrongly imprisoned for murder and who, after escaping, is on her way to join her mother. Sophie's arrival puts in jeopardy her daughter's future, but the mysterious woman is as determined to save her daughter as Janine is to save Sophie. Only one of them can succeed.
JULY -†"EMBRACED BY†LOVE" by Suzanne Brockmann - Josie and Cooper were one of those couples everyone envied: gorgeous, successful, and so deeply devoted. Even though Josie tended to work too hard, putting in long hours to lift her fledgling company off the ground, and Cooper could be wild and unpredictable, the two complemented each other. It seemed their love would last forever. But sometimes love just isn't enough. When a tragic accident leaves Josie and Cooper with two young children to care for, their bond will be tested. Now the pressures of their commanding careers are compounded by the needs of the children, and they find themselves drifting further and further apart. They will have to work to find the way back to each other, to the incredible passion that was once at the center of their lives - and still burns deep in their hearts.
AUGUST - "BLACK HILLS" by Nora Roberts - A summer at his grandparents' South Dakota ranch is not eleven-year-old Cooper Sullivan's idea of a good time. But things are a big more bearable now that he's discovered the neighbor girl, Lil Chance, and her homemade batting cage. Even horseback riding isn't as awful as Coop thought it would be. Each year, Coop's annual summer visit, their friendship deepens from innocent games to stolen kisses, but there is one shared experience that will forever haunt them: the terrifying discovery of a hiker's body. As the seasons change and the years roll, Lil stays steadfast to her dreams of becoming a widlife biologist and protecting her family land, while Coop struggles with his father's demand that he attend law school and join the family firm. Twelve years after they last walked together hand in hand, fate has brought them back to the Black Hills when the people and things they hold most dear need them most. An investigator in New York, Coop recently left his fast paced life to care for his aging grandparents and the ranch he has come to call home. Though the memory of his touch still haunts her, Lil has let nothing stop her dream of opening the Chance Wildlife Refuge, but something...or someone...has been keeping a close watch. When small pranks and acts of destruction escalate into the heartless killing of Lil's beloved cougar, recollections of an unsolved murder in these very hills have Coop springing to action to keep Lil safe. Lil and Coop both know the natural dangers that lurk in the wild landscape of the Black Hills. But now they much work together to unearth a killer of twisted and unnatural instincts who has singled them out as prey.
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Wow - I think I've read all of those but 3 or 4. Is there a purpose to putting them here? I loved seeing them but wondered why you'd put them in a thread. I'm either very nosy or curious.
JANUARY -†"THE KISS"†by Danielle Steel - Isabelle Forrester is the wife of a prominent Parisian banker who has long ago shut her out of his heart. For years Isabelle has lived a life of isolation, caring for her desperately ill son and her teenage daughter. She allows herself one secret pleasure: a long distance friendship with a Washington power broker who like Isabelle is trapped in an empty marriage. To Bill Robinson, Isabelle is a godsend, a kindred spirit who touches him across the miles. Their relationship is a lifeline that sustains them both through the heartache of marriages they will not betray. Agreeing to meet for a few innocent days in London, Isabelle and Bill find their friendship changing. Then, amid the crash of steel they are thrust onto a new path frought with pain but also with possibility. Now inside a London hospital, Isabella and Bill cling to life. In the weeks that follow they transverse a road to recovery littered with challenges of the body, spirit and heart. Together, they must find the strength to embrace life again. But changing relationships and another loss conspire to separate them once more. And this time they could lose each other forever.
FEBRUARY†-†"SUPERSTITION" by Karen Robards - Pauleys Island, South Carolina. Sunny, idyllic and picture-perfect, until a tabloid news program airs a splashy segment about the community's only unsolved murder - the girsley stabbing of teenager Tara Mitchell and the subsequent disappearance of her two best friends, now thought to be long dead. In the years since the murders, several families have moved into the mansion where the crime occurred, each claiming that the dead girls still haunt the house. Beautiful redheaded reporter Nicole Sullivan, sensing the story could be her big break, arranges for her mother, a renowned psychic, to contact the three victims in a live seance on the show Twenty-four Hours Investigates.But something goes terribly wrong during the segment, and a young woman is murdered in the same manner as Tara Mitches was fifteen years earlier. Pressured by her producers to get the inside story, Nicole continues to investigate. As an attraction grows between her and Police Chief Joe Franconi, another identical murder occurs, and a menacing warning is delivered that the original killer is back to claim three more lives. The body count rises, and so does the danger to Nicole, who is attacked, barely escaping with her life. She and Joe must team up, as it becomes clear that the killer has set his sights on her as his next victim.
MARCH†-†"DELICIOUS" by Susan Mallery (The Buchanans #1) - Cal Buchanan needs a top-flight chef to take over his failing Seattle restaurant, The Waterfront. He can afford to hire the best in town - the only problem is that the best happens to be his ex-wife, Penny Jackson. Penny really needs the opportunity, but she doesn't need the distraction of working with her ex. She's sworn off romance - she's even having a baby on her own. But before she knows it, the heat is on...and the attraction between her and Cal moves from a low simmer to a full boil! The rest should be as easy as pie, but a secret from Cal's past could spoil everything. Maybe it's true that too many cooks spoil the broth - or maybe two is enough to make it irresistible.
APRIL†-†"STAND-IN GROOM" by Suzanne Brockmann (Sunrise #4) -†Like a knight in a fairy tale, he appeared from out of nowhere and rescued her at the last moment. Now, sizing up the man who'd saved her purse and driven off her attackers, aspiring Boston entrepreneur Chelsea Spencer considered that this good-looking stranger could fit another role - not to mention a tuxedo - equally well. By the end of the week, Chelsea was scheduled to get married as a condition for earning the inheritance necessary to save her fledgling business. There was only one problem: She was short a groom. Johnny Anziano would have been satisfied with a date, but the woman he'd dashed in to save during a street mugging had proposed much more than that. For two weeks' "work," he'd earn $75,000 and a luxurious tropical island vacation. By saying a simple, meaningless "I do," he could save Chelsea one more time. But this time they were facing something a lot more dangerous than a gang of street thugs - their attraction for each other.
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1. "HUMMINGBIRD LAKE" by Emily March (Eternity Springs #2) - Haunted by painful memories, pediatric surgeon Sage Anderson gives up medicine and moves to Eternity Springs. There she finds a place to call home, but even her newfound success as a gifted artist isn't enough to keep her nightmares at bay. Colt Rafferty is about to change all that. Eternity Springs is a refuge for Cole, a place to ground himself when the stress of investigating tragedies takes its toll. He has come here for a little R & R, but instead of relaxing, he finds himself fascinated by the mysterious redhead whose secrets beg to be discovered - a beauty running from her past, a heartsick woman in desperate need of the sweet sanctuary of a devoted man's embrace. And he is just the man to show her the true path to peace - by offering her the hearing power of love.
2. "THE ASSIGNMENT" by Evangeline Anderson - Detective Nicholas Valenti, tall, dark and stoic, has been best friends with his partner, Sean O'Brian for six years. The two men have seen each other through divorce, disaster and danger and saved each other's asses more times than Valenti can count. Exactly when he started seeing his blond, intense partner in another light, Valenti isn't really sure. He only knows that he wants O'Brian in a way that had nothing to do with friendship and everything to do with possession. It is a desire he will have to hide forever because O'Brian is undeniably straight. Just as Valenti is coming to grips with his new, unacceptable, feelings for his partner, their police Captain puts them on a new case that could blow Valenti's cover once and for all. He and O'Brian are going undercover at the country's largest and most infamous gay resort to bust a notorious drug lord and stop the shipments of poison cocaine that are flooding the gay bars all over the city. Now Valenti will have to make a choice between friendship and desire. He and O'Brian will play the roles of gay men that will push the limits of their relationship to the breaking point. Will their time at the RamJack forge a new bond between them or destroy their partnership forever?
3. "RESCUE ME" by Christy Reece (Last Chance Rescue #1) - A covert operative of Last Chance Rescue Enterprises (LCR) Eden St. Claire has made secrets of her life's work. Seven years ago, an evening of emotional vulnerability and pure pleasure almost destroyed her. Now Eden wears her beauty like a mask, concealing any hint of vulnerability or the demons of her past. A daring rescue of an innocent girl on a Greek island leads Eden to a new partner. Jordan Montgomery, new to LCR, has been looking for Eden - though he knows her by another name, from another time. But his search for her is over-shadowed by a case that's gone international. A powerful, ruthless, organized network of stealing women and children around the world - as a lover, a traitor and a killer all wait for Eden's next move.
4. "SECOND GLANCE" by Jodi Picoult - A developer has slated an ancient Abenaki Indian ground for a strip mall and now strange happenings have the inhabitants of tiny Comtosook, Vermont, talking of supernatural forces at work. Ross Wakeman is a ghost hunter who's never seen a ghost - all he's searching for is something to end the pain of losing his fiancee, Aimee, in a car accident. He's tried suicide - any number of times. Now Ross lives only for a way to connect with Aimee from beyond. Searching the site for signs of the paranormal, Ross meets the mysterious Lia, who sparks him to life for the first time in years. But the discoveries that await Ross are beyond anything he could dream of in this world - or the next.
5. "BETWEEN SISTERS" by Kristin Hannah - No one knows you like your sister. She can make you laugh or break your heart with a single word. And no one writes novels like Kristin Hannah, an author who vividly explores the intricate bonds of family and as Tami Hoag said, "touches the deepest, most tender corners of our hearts." Now, in her rich, captivating book, she creates an indelible portrait of two woman, once lost to each other, about to come together in a time of exquisite joy and almost unbearable sadness. Sisters by blood, strangers by choice, each stand at a crossroads, ready to confront the betrayals of the past...Meghann Dontess is a woman haunted by heartbreak. Twenty-seven years ago she was forced to make a terrible choice, one that cost her everything, including the love of her sister, Claire. Now, Meghann is a hotshot divorce attorney who doesn't believe in intimacy - until she meets the one man who can change her mind. Clare Cavenaugh has fallen in love for the first time in her life. As her wedding approaches, she prepares to face her harsh, judgmental older sister. It is the first time they have been together in more than two decades. Over the course of a hot Pacific Northwest summer, these two women who believe that they have nothing in common will try to become what they never were: a family. Tender, funny, bittersweet and wonderfully moving, Between Sisters celebrates the joys and heartaches that can be shared only by sisters, the mistakes made in the name of love and the healing power of new beginnings.
6. "POSSESSION IN DEATH" by J.D. Robb (In Death #30-1/2) -"The devil killed my body. I cannot fight, I cannot find. I cannot free her. You must. You are the one. We speak to the dead." Immediately after hearing these words, uttered to her by an old Romanian woman bleeding to death in the street, detective Eve Dallas begins to notice that her latest case has come with a number of interesting side-effects: visions of the deceased, instant familiarity with rooms she's never seen before and fluency in Russian. Likewise, there appears to be a force inside of her, a spirit other than her own, that won't let her rest until she's found Beata, the old woman's great-granddaughter, whose disappearance two months prior remains a mystery. Desperate to be free of her new "gifts", Eve pursues the facts until she discovers a link between Beata's disappearance and the disappearance of eight other young women, all of whom attended the same dance classes, none of whom were ever heard from again.
7. "WHITE HEAT" by Jill Shalvis (Firefighting #1) - Bush pilot Lyndie Anderson has gotten by on her own and she'd like to keep it that way. She lives only for her plane and the open sky. Then she's hired to fly a drop-dead-gorgeous fireman to a blaze in Copper Canyon and suddenly she's struggling to douse a burning desire inside. Griffin Moore hasn't been the same since an Idaho wildfire claimed his crew. And when he heads for another fire, he's prepared to endanger his life again. But when Lyndie and he set off sparks, he finds that his heart may be at risk as well. Now, as they fly toward the raging inferno, what was supposed to be strictly business becomes purely passionate.
8. "KNIGHTS & WHITE SATIN" by Cash Cole - Mike is a swinging bachelor with a big empty house and plenty of time and money to spend as he likes. But the second he sees Lee in the bar, he knows something's about to change. He brings Lee home for some hot-tub fun and plunges headfirst into love. And Lee is right there with him. But Lee isn't flying solo. Years ago, he married his best friend Cate so they could please her parents, share a household and have a baby together. Their relationship is strictly platonic and Cate is thrilled that Lee has found someone. She doesn't want him to give up his love life to care for her, but she's living on borrowed time due to a terminal illness. As Mike discovers passion the likes of which he never knew before Lee, he realizes he needs to step up and think of others for a change. And Lee - and his family - are about to learn what it's like to have a real-life knight in shining armor.
9. "THE WELCOME HOME GARDEN CLUB" by Lori Wilde (Twilight Texas #4) - Caitlyn Marsh stopped believing in happily-ever-after when high-school sweetheart, Gideon Garza, left for Iraq. Now she raises her small son while her matchmaking gardening club members drive her crazy. Then Caitlyn's world turns upside-down when Gideon swaggers back to Twilight. Gideon had left town in the middle of night with threats ringing in his ears. A lot of things have cfhanged since then. This bad boy-turned-Green Beret bears scars from the war, the timid girl he loved is an independent mother and the father who refused to recognize his son in life has, in death, left him a vast cattle ranch. He still aches for Caitlyn and now there's a dark haired boy who looks exactly like Gideon did at that age. Could the child be his? And can this war-weary soldier overcome the scars of the past to claim the family he so richly deserves?
Last Edited on: 5/2/11 5:13 PM ET - Total times edited: 28
My favorite book of this month was Wrecker by Summer Wood. I am always a sucker for a well written book about 1. California in the 60s 2. Kids 3. People who drop out and live in the rural country side.
JANUARY - I really don't have a favorite for January, the highest I rated anything was a A+++.
FEBRUARY - "THE BROTHERS BISHOP" by Bart Yates (A++++) Tommy and Nathan Bishop are as different as two brothers can be. Carefree and careless, Tommy is the golden boy who takes men into his bed with a seductive smile and turns them out just as quickly. No one can resist him - and no one can control him, either. That salient point certainly isn't lost on his brother. Nathan is all about control. At thirty-one, he is as dark and complicated as Tommy is light and easy, and he is bitter beyond his years. While Tommy left for the excitement of New York City, Nathan has stayed behind, teaching high school English in their provincial hometown, surrounded by the reminders of their ruined family history and the legacy of anger that runs through him like a scar. Now, Tommy has come home to the family cottage by the sea for the summer, bringing his unstable, sexual powder keg of an entourage - and the distant echoes of his family's tumultuous past - with him. Tommy and his lover Philip are teetering on the brink of disaster, while their married friends, Camille and Kyle, perfect their steps in a dance of denial, each partner pulling Nathan deeper into the fray. And when one of Nathan's troubled students, Simon, begins visiting the house, the slow fuse is lit on a highly combustible mix. During a heady two-week party filled with drunken revelations, bitter jealousies, caustic jabs and tender reconciliations, Tommy and Nathan will confront the legacy of their twisted family history - the angry, abusive father and the tragic death of their mother - and finally, to the one secret that has shaped their entire lives. It is a summer that will challenge everything Nathan remembers and unravel Tommy's carefully constructed facade, drawing them both unwittingly into a drama with echoes of the past...one with unforeseen and very dangerous consequences.
MARCH - "THIRD DEGREE" by Greg Iles (unabridged Audio CD) (A+++++) In the span of twenty-four hours, everything Laurel Shields believes about her life and her marriage to a prominent doctor will be shattered - if she survives a terrifying ordeal. The day begins with the jarring discovery that, soon after ending an affair, Laurel is pregnant. But when she returns home to find her husband ashen, unkempt and on the brink of violence, a nightmare quickly unfolds. In the heart of an idyllic Mississippi town, behind the walls of her perfect house, Laurel finds herself locked in a volatile standoff with a husband she barely recognizes. Confronted with evidence of her betrayal, she must tread a deadly path between truth and deception while a ring of armed police prepares a dangerous rescue. But Laurel's greatest fear - and her only hope - lies with her former lover, a brave man whom fate has granted the power to save both Laurel and her children - if she can protect his identity long enough.
APRIL - "THE BEACH TREES" by Karen White (A++++) Julie first knew loss at the age of twelve, when her younger sister disappeared from their backyard - never to be found. As her once close-knit family grew apart, Julie's mother obsessively searched for the girl and when her mother died, Julie took up the search. Even as she went on with life, discovering a love for art that she attributed to her painter great-grandfather, she never let go of the hope that she might find her sister. Then, while working at an auction house in New York, Julie meets Monica Guidry - a struggling artist and single mother who reminds Julie so much of her sister that she can't help feeling drawn to her and even a bit protective. Monica paints a vivid picture of her Southern family through stories, but never says why or how she lost contact with them. And she has another secret: a heart condition that will soon take her life. Feeling as if she's lost her sister a second time, Julie inherits from Monica a valuable portrait - as well as custody of her young son. Taking him to Biloxi, Mississippi, to meet the family he's never known, Julie discovers a connection of her own. The portrait, which depicts a prominent Guidry family member, was done by her great-grandfather - and unlocks a surprising family history.
MAY - "WINTER GARDEN" by Kristin Hannah (unabridged Audio CD) (A++++++) (what a beautiful, sad, mesmerizing story) Meredith and Nina Whitson are as different as sisters can be. One stayed at home to raise her children and manage the family business; the other followed a dream and traveled the world to become a famous photojournalist. But when their beloved father falls ill, these two estranged sisters will find themselves together again, standing alongside their disapproving mother, Anya, who even now offers no comfort to her daughters. On his deathbed, their father extracts a promise: Anya will tell her daughters a fairy tale; it is one she began years ago and never finished. This time she will tell it all the way to the end. The tale their mother tells them is unlike anything they've heard before - a captivating, mysterious love story that spans more than sixty years and moves from frozen, war-torn Leningrad to modern-day Alaska. Nina's obsession to uncover the truth will send them all on an unexpected journey into their mother's past, where they will discover a secret so shocking, it shakes the foundation of their family and changes who they believe they are.
JUNE - "DANGER IN THE SHADOWS" by Dee Henderson (O'Malley prequel) (A++++++) (Kindle) Her life is not her own - the bureau owns her. Under FBI protection, Sara isn't even Sara Walsh anymore; her name is what they tell her. Her home is where they send her. She's never there for long. A stranger owns her. Though faceless, he haunts Sara's dreams. He's the man who abducted her as a child and continues to stalk her. He's the one who's determined to end their connection - and Sara's life. But mostly, fear owns her. Which makes falling in love with a man as high-profile as Adam Black a bad idea. And a dangerous one. For both of them. The world is an unsafe place for love - and certainly an unsafe place for children Adam longs for. No one knows better than Sara and she can't take the risk...But if she doesn't, her life will never be her own. Where will she find the courage to name her terror and face her fear?
JULY - 1. "HEAD OVER HEELS" by Jill Shalvis (Lucky Harbor #3) (A++++) Breaking rules and breaking hearts. Free-spirited Chloe lives life on the edge. Unlike her soon-to-be married sisters, she isn't ready to settle into a quiet life running their family's newly renovated inn. But her love of trouble - and trouble with love - quickly draws the attention of the very stern, very sexy sheriff who'd like nothing better than to tame her wild ways. Suddenly Chloe can't take a misstep without the sheriff hot on her heels. His rugged swagger and his enigmatic smile are enough to make a girl beg to be handcuffed. For the first time, instead of avoiding the law, Chloe dreams of surrender. Can this rebel find a way to keep the peace with the straitlaced sheriff? Or will Chloe's colorful past keep her from a love that lasts...and the safe haven she truly wants in a town called Lucky Harbor?
2. "JACOB'S LADDER" by Z.A. Maxfield (St. Nacho's #3) (A++++) (Kindle) Jacob "Yasha" Livingston is having a bad day. First there is the head cold. Then the orgy, the fight and the hospital. Between that and the bus driver who ejects him - after accusing him of transmitting the Swine Flu - the rest of his day seems fairly vague. Now he's stuck in a small town called Santo Ignacio and he has a whole lot of thinking to do. One thing is, when fate speaks in the form of an EMT, maybe it's time to listen. One man in particular, EMT Jason "JT" Lents, with his shy smile and jade green eyes, seems more like an angel than a paramedic. But Jason has a date with a newer, prettier girl every night, despite the fact that he seems to return Yash's interest. What will make JT happy? If JT is afraid of his feelings it might be Yasha's chance to heal the healer. For this couple to find their way, it's up to Jacob, his new friends and the magic of St. Nacho's.
3. "THE SWEETEST THING" by Jill Shalvis (Lucky Harbor #2) (A++++) Two men are one too many. Tara has a thousand good reasons not to return to the little coastal town of Lucky Harbor, Washington. Yet with her life doing a major crash-and-burn, anywhere away from her unfulfilled dreams and sexy ex-husband will do. As Tara helps her two sisters get their newly renovated inn up and running she finally has a chance to get things under control and come up with a plan for her life. But a certain tanned, green-eyed sailor has his own ideas, such as keeping Tara hot, bothered...and in his bed. And when her ex wants Tara back, three is a crowd she can't control - especially when her deepest secret reappears out of the blue. Now Tara must confront her past and discover what she really wants. If she's luck, she might just find that everything her heart desires is right here in Lucky Harbor.
4. " SHADOW'S STAND" by Sarah McCarthy (Hell's Eight #5) (A++++) Husband of convenience. Lover by choice. Shadow Ochoa is lying low in the western Kansas Territory, waiting for his fellow Texas Rangers - the Hell's Eight brotherhood - to clear his name. That is, until he's unjustly strung up for horse thieving...and pretty Fei Yen intervenes. Invoking a seldom-used law, the exotic lady prospector claims Shadow as her husband and rides off with the bridegroom shackled to her buckboard. Savvy, fearless Fei is single-mindedly devoted to her hidden claim and all it promises: wealth, security and freedom. A husband is just a necessary inconvenience and a name on a paper to hold the claim she cannot. Shadow isn't a man to take orders from anyone, especially from lovely Fei - except that the daily friction between them ignites into nightly blazes of all-consuming passion., Soon Shadow is dreaming a little himself: of the life they could have if only Fei could see past the lure of independence. If only bounty hunters weren't closing in on him. If only he's left standing when the impending showdown has ended.
5. "BACK ROADS" by Susan Crandall (Road to Romance #1) (A++++) Sensible, capable and always in control, Leigh Mitchell is the local sheriff of her sleepy Indiana home town. But Leigh is turning thirty and feeling restless. Something needs to change. She needs to change. So when a sexy stranger asks her to ride the Ferris wheel one moonlit night, she takes a leap of faith - and falls for Will Scott, dangerous serest and all. By turns passionate and tender, Will reveals little about his past and less about his future, even when the town suspects him of committing a terrible crime. Now on the uncertain back roads of life, take-charge Leigh must learn to let go...and trust not only the cold dictates of the law but the hot-blooded demands of her heart.
AUGUST - 1. "IF YOU SEE HER" by Shiloh Walker (Ash Trilogy #2) (A+++++) Hope Carson may not look like a survivor, but she has escaped an abusive ex-husband and recovered from a vicious assault. Now she endures the painful memories and suspicious rumors surrounding her involvement in the attack. Her ex is a cop, so the last people she trusts are law enforcement officials - and she certainly doesn't trust how the local DA makes her feel inside. Remy Jennings should know better. He has no business falling for a woman who he suspects may have a deeply troubled mind. And even if he did make a move, she'd bolt like a frightened rabbit. But how can he deny a burning desire that threatens to consume him? As Hope's past catches up with her in the worst way, Remy is determined to break through her defenses, earn her trust and keep her safe in his arms - before it's too late.
2. "IF YOU KNOW HER" by Shiloh Walker (Ash Trilogy #3) (A+++++) A shadow in the window. Nia Hollister doesn't scare easy. Come hell or high water, she intends to find her cousin's killer and so she returns to Ash, Kentucky, for answers. What she doesn't expect is to ache with desire every time she sees Law Reilly. If any man can help her escape the nightmares for awhile, it's him. But can she allow herself to take comfort in those strong arms when a murderer still roams free? Unbeknownst to Nia as she quietly slips into Law Reilly's home, she's being watched - by someone who is waiting for an opportunity to strike. Timing is everything, though he can't wait forever. If Nia's not frightened now, she soon will be. Nia has made a vow to find her cousin's killer. She should be careful what she wishes for.
SEPTEMBER - 1. "FIFTY SHADES DARKER" by E.L. James (Fifty Shades #2) (A+++++) Daunted by the singular tastes and dark secrets of the beautiful, tormented young entrepreneur Christian Grey, Anastasia Steele has broken off their relationship to start a new career with a Seattle publishing house. But desire for Christian still dominates her every waking thought and when he proposes a new arrangement, Ana cannot resist. They rekindle their searing sensual affair and Ana learns more about the harrowing past of her damaged, driven and demanding Fifty Shades. While Christian wrestles with his inner demons, Ana must confront the anger and envy of the women who came before her and make the most important decision of her life.
2. "FIFTY SHADES FREED" by E.L. James (Fifty Shades #3) (A+++++) When unworldly student Anastasia Steele first encountered the driven and dazzling young entrepreneur Christian Grey it sparked a sensual affair that changed both of their lives irrevocably. Shocked, intrigued and, ultimately, repelled by Christian's singular erotic tastes, Ana demands a deeper commitment. Determined to keep her, Christian agrees. Now, Ana and Christian have it all - love, passion, intimacy, wealth and a world of possibilities for their future. But Ana knows that loving her Fifty Shades will not be easy and that being together will pose challenges that neither of them would anticipate. Ana must somehow learn to share Christian's opulent lifestyle without sacrificing her own identity. And Christian must overcome his compulsion to control as he wrestles with the demons of a tormented past. Just when it seems that their strength together will eclipse any obstacle, misfortune, malice and fate conspire to make Ana's deepest fears turn into reality.
3. "SOLD TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER" by Donna Alward (A+++++) All she wants is his name on the dotted line. He's got other ideas. For Ella, marrying Devin had seemed like a good idea at the time. Friends since childhood and in love with him for as long as she could remember, marriage had been the next logical step. Then the real world called and Ella's feet had itched to get out of Backwards Gulch, Colorado. Now, with a new opportunity on the East Coast beckoning, it's time to put her past behind her once and for all. When she sees Devin standing on a charity auction block, she decides it's the perfect opportunity to finally get his signature on the divorce papers he never signed. Devin's certain about one thing when he sees Ella for the first time in twelve years - she's not the girl he married. The way she left him still stings and if she wants him to sign on the dotted line he's going to make her work for it...for the full forty-eight hours she paid for. When the old attraction flares between them, the years apart disappear and resolve melts faster than high-country snow in summer. But when Ella awakens with the same determination to get back to Denver, divorce papers in hand, she has a problem...Devin still hasn't signed them.
4. "SPRING FEVER" by Mary Kay Andrews (A+++++) Annajane Hudgens truly believes she is over her ex-husband, Mason Bayless and she has absolutely no problem attending his wedding to the beautiful, intelligent, delightful Celia. Celia: the woman everyone in town adores. Everyone, that is, except for Annajane and her lifelong best friend, Patricia "Pokey" Bayless. When fate intervenes and the wedding is called to a half - as the bride is literally walking down the aisle - Annajane wonders if maybe she's been given a second chance. Maybe everything happens for a reason. And maybe, just maybe, she wants Mason back. But there are secrets afoot in this small town. Passcoe, North Carolina, is the home of Quixie Cherry Soda, which has been in the Bayless family for generations. Anyone born in Passcoe is raised on cherry soda and its mascot, Dixie the Quixie Pixie, but now change is on the horizon. Annajane soon sees that these changes can bring out the worst in people and uncover long-hidden family scandals. And even though there are people determined to keep Annajane from getting what she wants, happiness could be hers for the taking and the life she once had with Mason in this sleepy little lake town could be in her future. That is, if she can find out what she's really made of and what really matters most to her.
OCTOBER - "THE HEART MENDER: THE STORY OF SECOND CHANCES" by Andy Andrews (A+++++) While digging up a withering wax myrtle tree beside his waterfront home on the Gulf Coast, author Andy Andrews unearths a rusted metal container filled with Nazi artifacts and begins an intriguing investigation that unlocks an unspoken past that took place in his backyard...literally. In the summer of 1942, as the country gears up for a full-scale commitment to WWII, German subs are dispatched to the Gulf of Mexico to sink U.S. vessels carrying goods and fuel for the war. While taking a late-night walk along the coastline, Helen Mason - recently widowed by the realities of war - discovers the near-lifeless body of a German sailor. Enraged at the sight of Josef Landermann's uniform, Helen is prepared to leave the lieutenant to die when an unusual phrase, faintly uttered, changes her mind. Set in a period simmering with anger and suspicion, The Heart Mender offers the very real chronicle of a small town preparing itself for the worse the world has to offer. As cargo from torpedoed ships begins to wash up on the beach, Josef and Helen must reconcile their pasts in order to create a future. Blending his unique style of historical accuracy with unparalleled storytelling, Andy Andrews offers a tale of war, faith and forgiveness - illuminating the one principle that frees the human spirit.
NOVEMBER - 1."FOREVER AND A DAY" by Jill Shalvis (Lucky Harbor #6) (A++++) Love can happen in a heartbeat. Grace never thought she'd be starting her life over from scratch. Losing everything has landed her in Lucky Harbor, working as a dog walker for overwhelmed ER doctor Josh Scott. But the day his nanny fails to show up, Grace goes from caring for Josh's lovable mutt to caring for his rambunctious son. Soon Grace is playing house with the sexy single dad. With so many people depending on him, Josh has no time for anything outside of his clinic and family - until Grace arrives in town. Now this brainy blonde is turning his life inside out and giving a whole new meaning to the phrase "good bedside manner," Josh and Grace don't know if what they have can last. But in a town like Lucky Harbor, a lifetime of love starts with just one day.
2. MY KIND OF CHRISTMAS" by Robyn Carr (Virgin River #20) (A++++) The Riordan brothers may have a reputation for being rough-and-tumble, but Patrick has always been the gentle, sweet-natured one. These days, his easygoing manner is being tested by his high-octane career as a navy pilot. But for the Riordan brothers, when the going gets tough...the tough find the love of a good woman. Except the woman who has caught Patrick's attention if Jack Sheridan's very attractive niece. Angie LeCrois comes to Virgin River to spend Christmas relaxing, away from her well-intentioned but hovering mother. Yet instead of freedom, she gets Jack Sheridan. If her uncle had his way, she'd never go out again. And certainly not with rugged, handsome Patrick Riordan. But Angie has her own idea of the kind of Christmas she wants - and the kind of man! Patrick and Angie thought they wanted to be left alone this Christmas - until they meet each other. Then they want to be left alone together. But the Sheridan and Riordan families have different plans for Patrick and Angie - and for Christmas, Virgin River-style!
3."ALWAYS SOMETHING THERE TO REMIND ME" by Beth Harbison (A++++) No one ever forgets their first true love. But what happens when he hasn't forgotten you either? Two decades ago, Erin Edwards was she she'd already found the love of her life: Nate Lawson. Her first love. The one who whom she shared everything - dreams of the future, of children, plans for forever. The one she thought she would spend the rest of her life with. Until one terrible night when Erin made a mistake Nate could not forgive, leaving her to mourn the relationship she could never forget or get over. Today, Erin is contentedly involved with a phenomenal guy, while maneuvering a successful and exciting career and raising a great daughter all on her own. So why would the name "Nate Lawson" be the first thing to enter her mind when her boyfriend asks her to marry him? In the wake of the proposal, Erin finds herself coming unraveled over the past and the love she never forgot. The more she tries to ignore it and move on, the more it haunts her.
4. "ECHOES AT DAWN" by Maya Banks (KGI #5) (A++++) The Kelly Group International (KGI): A super-elite, top secret, family-run business. Qualifications: High intelligence, rock-hard body, military background. Mission: Hostage/kidnap victim recovery, intelligence gathering, handling jobs the U.S. government can’t...They live by night. Grace Peterson is desperate, in hiding and on the run after escaping a shadowy group determined to exploit her extraordinary ability to heal others. Her only lifeline - an unerring telepathic ability she shares with her sister - has been severed, leaving her along and vulnerable. And time is running out. Enlisted to bring Grace home is Rio, relentless member of the KGI. He's unprepared for his reaction to this wounded, damaged woman and he's fiercely determined to protect her from those who nearly destroyed her. In Rio, she finds a safe haven and for the first time...hope. But the mission is far from over. The danger Grace has eluded is fast closing in. And now it's pitching two lovers toward an unfamiliar horizon, with no place left to hide.
5. "HEAD OVER HEELS" by Susan Andersen (The Marine #1) (A++++) Who said "you can't go home again"? In Veronica Davis's case, who'd want to - especially when you hail from Fossil, Washington? But now she's back among the good-ol' boys who think she's fair game just because she's in a waitress uniform. The truth is, Veronica's the boss - at least until she can sell the family saloon and skip town again as fast as her feet can carry her - and nobody knows that better than Cooper Blackstock. From behind the bar, the ex-Special Forces Marine sees all. And his undercover agenda has made the feisty boss-lady's troubles his own. And her troubles are considerable, what with a family in turmoil, a pseudo-bartender with dangerous secrets, a murder investigation and death threats. Though the town surprisingly rallies in support, it's still a good thing that Cooper will be there to catch Veronica if she stumbles - if he doesn't start falling himself.
6. "CHERISH" by Tere Michaels (Faith, Love and Devotion #4) (A++++) (Adobe PDF book) Matt and Evan are living quietly in their Brooklyn home with the twins, Danny and Elizabeth. The older girls - Katie and Miranda - are off at college, Evan is about to be promoted to captain and things are calm. Evan accidently learns that Miranda has a new boyfriend and is talking marriage after just three months of dating. After peeling himself off the ceiling, he demands a conversation with his eldest daughter, which erupts into, as Matt calls it, "a steel cage match". Miranda indeed has a boyfriend (Kent), a business major (from Connecticut) and they are most definitely serious, In fact, Miranda wants to bring him to Thanksgiving dinner - along with his parents, Blake and Cornelia. There is much debate but Evan agrees - mostly because Miranda's part of the bargain is that she won't get engaged or elope until the parents have met. Thanksgiving descends into madness before the turkey is cut.
7. "WHEN SNOW FALLS" by Brenda Novak (Whiskey Creek #2) (A++++) Welcome to winter in Whiskey Creek - home of the gold country! Her name is Cheyenne. But who is she? After growing up in cheap motels, moving from town to town with her sister and mother, Cheyenne Christensen is grateful to be on her own. She's grateful, too, for the friends she found once her family settled in California. But she's troubled by the mystery of her earliest memories, most of which feature a smiling blonde woman. A woman who isn't her mother. Although Cheyenne has repeatedly asked for explanations, the people who could help aren't talking. Cheyenne is set on finding answers, but without so much as a birth certificate, it won't be easy. Things get even more complicated when her closest friend is attracted to the man Cheyenne has secretly loved for years. For Eve's sake, she decides to step aside - which lands her right in the arms of Dylan Amos, oldest and baddest of the hell-raising Amos brothers. He's the kind of guy she's sworn to avoid. She can't afford to make a mistake, not when she finally has a chance to learn who she really is and change her life for the better. But...maybe there's more to Dylan than she thought. Maybe letting him go would be a bigger mistake.
8. "MILES TO GO" by Richard Paul Evans (Walk #2) (A++++) When Alan Christofferson, a Seattle ad executive, loses everything he once believed defined his life, he chooses to walk away from it all on a cross-country pilgrimage that is both physical and spiritual. Sometimes you can heal your own pain only by helping to heal someone else's. Slowly recovering consciousness in a Spokane, Washington, hospital after a vicious roadside stabbing, Alan Christofferson is bewildered to find a beautiful stranger at his side. His plans to walk from Seattle to Key West brutally disrupted, with injuries that will take months to heal, Alan realizes he is now homeless. Then, the mysterious woman invites him to stay with her during his recovery. As Alan shares the home of the lovely Angel, his generous benefactor, he discovers that she too has her secret sorrows. Before Alan can continue on his own journey, he must first accompany Angel on hers.
DECEMBER - 1. "TAKE ME" by Cherry Adair (A+++++) Business exec Joshua Falcon is used to getting way in the boardroom - and in the bedroom. And when he meets gorgeous Jessie Adams at a party, he wants her. Now - naked in his four-poster. Together the two of them could have a hot sexual affair - with no commitments. That suits Jessie to a T. Long nights of incredible sex. No ties. All she wants ia a baby by the man she's always secretly hungered for...and then she's moving on. Except Jessie and Joshua share a surprising past. One that's about to take them where they never expected to go.
2. "HOLLY AND MISTLETOE" by Susan Mallery (A+++++) A place to call home. A storm had claimed her apartment and now Holly Garrett was without a home for the holidays. But just when she saw her plans for Christmas crumbling a miracle came her way. The handsome firefighter who'd saved her and her cat - and who'd injured himself in the rescue - was now asking for her help. And he was inviting her to live with him. Sure, she could cook and clean for him while he recuperated, but was that really all he wanted? Jordan Haynes couldn't let Holly be alone for Christmas - not when she brought out his every protective instinct. No, he could play the needy patient as well as anyone...and just maybe he could convince her to keep him company through the holidays - if not longer.
3. "CAINE'S RECKONING" by Sarah McCarty (Hell's Eight #1) (A+++++) The Texas Rangers are the only family he's ever needed, until he meets the only woman he's ever wanted. Caine Allen is definitely not the marrying kind. But when he rescues a kidnapped woman and returns her to town, his honor and his desire for Desi won't allow him to let her go. From the moment he beds Desi, Caine knows turmoil will follow. Desi might have the face of a temptress, but she also has a will of iron. And while she needs his protection, she's determined that no man will control her again. They establish an uneasy bond, but it isn't enough for Caine. All he wants is to keep her in his bed. But with a bounty still on her head, first he must keep her alive.
4. "SAM'S CREED" by Sarah McCarty (Hell's Eight #2) (A+++++) Every Texas woman knows the men of Hell's Eight offer wild, no-strings-attached pleasure. Well, almost every woman. Known for making up his own rules of right and wrong, Texas Ranger Sam "Wildcard" MacGregor takes what he wants when he wants it, especially when it comes to women. But seduction is the last thing on his mind when he stumbles across a beauty crouching in fear beside a burned-out wagon. Isabella may look feminine and unassuming, but she's hell in a bodice with gunslinging skills to match any man's. The woman the townsfolk call "cursed" is hiding secrets too dangerous to face alone. Luckily, she sees in Sam what he can barely glimpse in himself - a virtuous man in a hard country bent on breaking him. A man who, under it all, craves a passionate woman willing to risk everything.
Last Edited on: 7/1/16 6:03 PM ET - Total times edited: 1