Ah March, the beginning of spring. Time to get ready for spring reads. Any on this list you would add to your spring reads?
Love by the Numbers – Laura V. Hilton – After a buggy accident claims the life of her fiance, Lydia Hershberger makes a fresh start in Jamesport, Missouri, managing a gift store. It isn’t long before she meets the young man hired to handle the bookkeeping–Caleb Bontrager, whose handcrafted cuckoo clocks are sold in the store. And it isn’t long before Caleb has made up his mind about her: bright and sparkly but not right for him. Alarmed by his attraction to her, he determines to settle down with someone more practical. Less sparkle. More logic. But he can’t seem to shake his feelings for Lydia.
When false allegations by the bishop back home catch up with Lydia and threaten to ruin her reputation, can she clear her name and find lasting happiness? Or will her sunny disposition fade away into heartbreak?
Lydia, Woman of Philippi – Diana Wallis Taylor – Smart, strong, and a follower of the Jewish God, Lydia has nonetheless always quietly conformed to the expectations of the wealthy Roman society surrounding her. Even though married off at fifteen to a man she dislikes, she is determined to be a faithful wife. But when her husband is killed some years later, Lydia vows never to remarry and returns to her father’s house in Thyatira with her twelve-year-old daughter. There, a new life begins to emerge. As she is trained in the family dye business, Lydia’s shrewd management quickly creates profit, prestige–and envy. At odds with her jealous brother, who is a staunch Roman and can’t understand her obsession with the Jewish religion, Lydia finds herself yet again at the mercy of a patriarchal society. Will fleeing to Philippi be enough to protect herself and those under her care? Will she keep her vow to widowhood when a handsome Greek God-fearer turns out to be more than just an employee? And when she meets a strange man named Paul the apostle by the river one Sabbath day, will Lydia have the courage to once more let her life be dramatically changed–this time forever?
The View from Rainshadow – Colleen Coble – #1 Lavender Tides – Shauna McDade is single mom to a five-year-old son after her husband was killed in a climbing accident. Her aerial photography business is on the verge of bankruptcy after a string of mechanical failures that don’t seem coincidental. She recently took pictures for an environmental study and noticed a dark spot in the Juan de Fuca Strait. Her pictures created a furor when it was discovered that the runoff is coming from one of the largest lavender growers in the valley, a family business inherited by Shauna’s estranged cousin. When her mentor and business partner is murdered, Shauna realizes that she’s in danger too. Fearing for her son, she turns to the only ally she has. Nate Bannister was her husband’s best friend–and is the person she blames for his death. Nate is only too happy to try to assuage his own guilt over Jack’s death by helping her in any way he can. But the lavender fields are a shroud for something much darker, and these are secrets that someone will do anything to keep buried
The Mayflower Bride – Kimberly Woodhouse – Mary Chapman boards the Speedwell in 1620 as a Separatist seeking a better life in the New World. William Lytton embarks on the Mayflower as a carpenter looking for opportunities to succeed–and he may have found one when a man from the Virginia Company offers William a hefty sum to keep a stealth eye on company interests in the new colony. The season is far too late for good sailing and storms rage, but reaching land is no better as food is scarce and the people are weak. Will Mary survive to face the spring planting and unknown natives? Will William be branded a traitor and expelled?
Kill Shot – Susan Sleeman – As the ballistics and weapon’s expert for the FBI’s special task force nicknamed the White Knights, Rick Cannon has known the Department of Defense was developing self-steering bullets. Rick feared these smart bullets–which have one hundred percent accuracy that can turn even a novice into a lethal sniper–would eventually end up in the hands of the wrong people. But since the ammunition was still in the development stage, he figured they had plenty of time before that happened. He was wrong. Dead wrong. Until they become reality. When a homeless vet is killed with a smart bullet, it’s clear that the ammunition has been stolen, and the Knights are called in to find the thief and stop the killings. But they aren’t the only ones desperate to find the killer. Therapist Olivia Dobbs is well known for her success
The Celebration – Amish Cooking Class – Wanda Brunstetter – Lyle and Heidi Troyer have taken in a brother and sister, who were orphaned when their parents were killed in a car accident. Hoping to help the children adapt and make friends, Heidi decides to hold a series of cooking classes for kids. But kids are always accompanied by an adult–and that is where the trouble arises. Miranda Cooper is living the life of a single mom to her two kids while separated from her husband, but Trent is trying to worm his way back into her heart. Denise McGuire’s life as a wife, mom, and real estate broker is full and spilling over. Darren Keller, single dad and firefighter, and Ellen Blackburn, single mom and nurse, find a few things in common. Will hearts be healed over plates of Amish food?