New Releases – June 11 – 16

Dear Readers,

Schools are out for the summer.  Have you joined the Baker Book House summer reading programs?  We have them for both kids and adults.  Go to bakerbookhouse.com for more information.

Happy Reading,

A Defense of Honor – Kristi Ann Hunter – When Katherine “Kit” FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she’s forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embarks on a search for his friend’s missing sister and is convinced Kit knows more about the girl than she’s telling.  After meeting Graham, Kit finds herself wishing things could have been different for the first time in her life, but what she wants can’t matter. Long ago, she dedicated herself to helping women escape the same scorn that drove her from London and to raising the innocent children caught in the crossfire. But as much as she desperately wishes to tell Graham everything, the risk of revealing the truth may come at too high a price for those she loves.

A Rebel Heart – Beth White – Five years after the final shot was fired in the War Between the States, Selah Daughtry can barely manage to keep herself, her two younger sisters, and their spinster cousin fed and clothed. With their family’s Mississippi plantation swamped by debt and the Big House falling down around them, the only option seems to be giving up their ancestral land–until a hotel management agent for the railroad offers her hope for the future.  If she’ll turn her home into a hotel, Levi Riggins says, he can all but guarantee it will be saved. Selah isn’t sure she entirely trusts the handsome Yankee. Yet what other options does she have? She’ll have to stay on her guard . . . but she never expected to have to guard her heart.

More than Meets the Eye – Karen Witemeyer – Many consider Evangeline Hamilton cursed. Orphaned at a young age and possessing a pair of mismatched eyes–one bright blue, the other dark brown–Evangeline has fought to find her way in a world that constantly rejects her. Yet the support of even one person can help overcome the world’s judgments, and Evangeline has two–Seth and Zach, fellow orphans she now counts as brothers.  Seeking justice against the man who stole his birthright and destroyed his family, Logan Fowler arrives in 1880s Pecan Gap, Texas, to confront Zach Hamilton, the hardened criminal responsible for his father’s death. Only instead of finding a solitary ruthless gambler, he discovers a man not much older than himself with an unusual family. And when Hamilton’s unique sister, Evangeline, insists on dousing Logan with sunshine every time they cross paths, Logan finds his quest completely derailed.

Justice Betrayed – Patricia Bradley – #3 A Memphis Cold Case – It’s Elvis Week in Memphis, and homicide detective Rachel Sloan isn’t sure her day could get any stranger when aging Elvis impersonator Vic Vegas asks to see her. But when he produces a photo of her murdered mother with four Elvis impersonators–one of whom had also been murdered soon after the photo was taken–she’s forced to reevaluate. Is there some connection between the two unsolved cases? And could the recent break-in at Vic’s home be tied to his obsession with finding his friend’s killer?  When yet another person in the photo is murdered, Rachel suddenly has her hands full investigating three cases. Lieutenant Boone Callahan offers his help, but their checkered romantic past threatens to get in the way. Can they solve the cases before the murderer makes Rachel victim number four?

Before I Saw You – Amy Sorrels – Folks are dying fast as the ash trees in the southern Indiana town ravaged by the heroin epidemic, where Jaycee Givens lives with nothing more than a thread of hope and a quirky neighbor, Sudie, who rescues injured wildlife. After a tragedy leaves her mother in prison, Jaycee is carrying grief and an unplanned pregnancy she conceals because she trusts no one, including the kind and handsome Gabe, who is new to town and to the local diner where she works.  Dividing her time between the diner and Sudie’s place, Jaycee nurses her broken heart among a collection of unlikely friends who are the closest thing to family that she has. Eventually, she realizes she can’t hide her pregnancy any longer―not even from the baby’s abusive father, who is furious when he finds out. The choices she must make for the safety of her unborn child threaten to derail any chance she ever had for hope and redemption. Ultimately, Jaycee must decide whether the truest form of love means hanging on or letting go.

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Summer Reading list 2018- part 2

Dear Readers,

Here is the second installment of the Summer Reading list.  Do you have all your books picked out for your summer reading?

Happy Reading,

Looking into You – Chris Fabry – contemporary – There is no greater power on earth than a mother’s love.

The Hidden Side – Heidi Chiavaroli – split time – When I was fourteen, I hid a pack of Virginia Slims in the top drawer of my dresser

Things I Never Told You – Beth K. Vogt – contemporary – The what-ifs taunted me every time I visited my parents, but any hope of beginning again had vanished years ago – if there’d ever been one.

223 Orchard Street – Renee Ryan – historical – Time had become her greatest enemy, the one obstacle Katie O’Connor hadn’t anticipated.

The 49th Mystic – Ted Dekker – fantasy – (prologue) – I’m walking through a field of yellow daisies, wanting to love the way they sway in a gentle breeze, wanting to enjoy the scents of fresh earth and natural grasses, the bright blue sky, the sound of chirping birds in the trees just ahead of me.

The Forgotten Road – Richard Paul Evans –  contemporary – I had a dream last night

Becoming the Talbot Sisters – Rachel Linden – contemporary – Waverly Talbot gritted her teeth and smiled brightly for the television camera

Honeysuckle Dreams – Denise Hunter – contemporary –  Playing house was just a little too easy for Hope Daniels.

The Heart Between Us – Lindsay Harrel – contemporary – (prologue) – Amy says in order to move forward, I have to stop clinging to the past.

Beneath A Prairie Moon – Kim Vogel Sawyer – historical – “When’re you gonna have your letter ready, Mack?”

Pelican Point – Irene Hannon – contemporary romance – #3 A Hope Harbor novel – He’d inherited a lighthouse?

The Accidental Guardian – Mary Connealy – #1 High Sierra Sweethearts – historical romance –  Deborah Harkness came awake with a snap, her hand already steady on the six-gun under her pillow.

The Wounded Shadow – Patrick W. Carr – #3 Dark Water Saga – fantasy – Ealdor emerged from the shadows to palpable silence – the lines of his face and the iron-gray of his beard familiar, and his gaze intense enough to see through walls.

Hometown Girl – Courtney Walsh – contemporary –  Beth Whitaker hated flowers

Characters’ names

Dear Readers,

I think we have all had that moment when we realize the main character of a book has our name, either first or last and even on those rare occasions both.  I have had both experiences and it was just fun to read.  So I was thinking about where authors get their character’s names.  I have heard everything from the phone book to looking through baby name books.  Most authors will tell you that they don’t usually name characters after people they know for fear of having to kill them off or that the person the character is named after will hate the character.

Which then got me to thinking, which characters would I rather not find my name attached to?  Of course none of us wants the serial killer to have our name, or that crazy person in the book that everyone is afraid of.  But who else? Probably someone who is destined to have a very short life in a book.

–          The aging grandmother/grandfather or great aunt/uncle – This character is usually introduced early in the book, sometimes only alive in the prologue.  They are usually a mentor or a person that raised our main character after their parents died/abandoned them/never knew them.  They are lovable and someone we all wished we had in our lives, but only realize too late how important they are to us.  Life expectancy 1 -4 chapters.

–          A quiet but very helpful partner of the minor cop team.  This character is one we all love to forget.  This character is always helpful, understanding and has a bit of background to them to make them sympathetic.  They usually have a loving family, married for several years. Occasionally they will be a newlywed.   But when you need another body in a good mystery, this person ends up dead, that way our main character can struggle with allowing the death to happen.  Life expectancy – somewhere around the middle of the book.

–          Teacher/professor who mentored you throughout school/college.  Someone who thought the main character had great potential long before the person themselves thought so.  Their death will cause the main character to suddenly develop self-doubt and make them unsure of their next step.   They will then hear from said mentor in a dream/vision/whisper and then move forward.  Life expectancy –  1 -8 chapters depending on how long the book is.

–          Beloved pet.  It would not be my favorite character to have my name, but it could be worse.  If said animal is in a major part of the story, said animal will die.  Think Old Yeller.  Life expectancy -can last all the way through the book, but must have enough pages left to have main character start their recovery from the loss.    The longer the life the more gruesome the death.

That is what makes reading books so much fun.  Each book we read and fall in love with has something special about it, even if it is a tragic character that carries the same name as ourselves.

Happy reading,

New Releases – June 4 – 9

Dear Readers,

Summer reading is the best.  It has already hit over 90 several times this spring, which is rare in Michigan.  But it was also a great reminder of the lazy days to come soon, where the only thing you want to do is lay in a hammock and read a good book.

Happy Reading,

Where Hope Begins – Catherine West – Savannah Barrington has always found solace at her parents’ lake house in the Berkshires, and it’s the place that she runs to when her husband of over twenty years leaves her. Though her world is shaken, and the future uncertain, she finds hope through an old woman’s wisdom, a little girl’s laughter, and a man who’s willing to risk his own heart to prove to Savannah that she is worthy of love.  But soon Savannah is given a challenge she can’t run away from: Forgiving the unforgivable. Amidst the ancient gardens and musty bookstores of the small town she’s sought refuge in, she must reconcile with the grief that haunts her, the God pursuing her, and the wounds of the past that might be healed after all.

Noah Man of God – Tim Chaffey/K. Marie Adams – The Remnant Trilogy – Book 3 – The world is inundated with violence and headed for destruction. Following his desperate flight from the clutches of Havilah’s wicked rulers, Noah finds himself caught in the middle of warring empires: the forces of Havilah, led by their evil king and priestess, battle the barbaric Nodite army for supremacy. Facing a decision that may cost loved ones their lives, Noah must find a way to escape the conflict to reach Emzara and fulfill God’s calling.  Seeking a safe place to build the Ark far from his enemy’s reach, Noah leads his group to the last place he thinks anyone would look. Encountering numerous surprises along the way, he discovers that someone else has already planned for his arrival.  As the Ark nears completion and judgment looms, Noah makes one more trek through a world dominated by deadly deceptions. Aided by an unexpected stranger in a perilous place, Noah learns once again that the Creator always keeps His promises.

Send Down the Rain – Charles Martin – Allie’s second husband is killed tragically when his 18-wheeler crashes into the rocks near their home in Cape San Blas–the tanker was full of fuel and the explosion could be seen on overhead satellites. She’d already lost the beloved waterfront restaurant her parents started and now losing her husband, no matter how unfulfilling their marriage was, might just push her over the edge.  Joseph’s time in Vietnam left him with scars that never seemed to heal. No matter how he’s tried to love or what he’s tried to do since then, he can’t pull himself out of the wreckage of his former life. His trust and security shaken, he isolates himself in a cabin. But every morning, he faithfully pours two cups of coffee, drinking his while he sits with the second, and then pouring out the full cup.  It’s no small coincidence that Joseph found a mother and her two young children lost in the woods near his cabin. Or that when he helps them return to family in Florida, he’s near enough to see that explosion. Near enough to know it’s close to home. Near enough to know that his childhood sweetheart needs him.

A Daring Venture – Elizabeth Camden –  As a biochemist in early 1900s New York, Doctor Rosalind Werner has dedicated her life to the crusade against waterborne diseases. She is at the forefront of a groundbreaking technology that will change the way water is delivered to every household in the city– but only if she can get people to believe in her work.  Newly appointed Commissioner of Water for New York Nicholas Drake is highly skeptical of Rosalind and her team’s techniques. When a brewing court case throws him into direct confrontation with her, he is surprised by his reaction to the lovely scientist. While Rosalind and Nick wage a private war against their own attraction, they stand firmly on opposite sides of a battle that will impact far more than just their own lives. As the controversy grows more public and inflammatory and Rosalind becomes the target of an unknown enemy, these two rivals will face higher stakes than they ever could have known.

Summer Reading list 2018 part 1

Dear Readers,

I have had fun reading the different post about first line Fridays.  It is always interesting to hear all the different way a book can start.  Sometimes it starts in a gripping way that you know you won’t be laying that book down for a while.  Others start out gently and in an easy manner that eases you into the story and you are positive you have found a new friend.

This year’s summer reading list is going to be made up of book’s first lines.  Some are quite long, others one or two words.  So have fun picking which titles you want to read first.

Happy Reading.

Send Down the Rain – Charles Martin – (Prologue)- The breeze tugged at my hair and cooled my skin.

Where Hope Begins – Catherine West – My husband is leaving me.

Ramble and Roar – Catie Cordero – I wasn’t looking for death.

The Masterpiece – Francine Rivers – Roman Vellasco climbed the fire escape and swung over the wall onto the flat roof.

A Daring Venture – Elizabeth Camden – (prologue) – “You and your brother are to go to the music room, close the door, and don’t come out until I say you can.”

More than Meets the Eye – Karen Witemeyer – (prologue) – “Don’t lose heart children.”

Justice Betrayed – Patricia Bradley – #3 A Memphis Cold Case – (prologue) – Shirley traced her finger over her mother’s image in the photo, then shoved the picture into the backpack with her other possessions.

Before I Saw You – Amy K. Sorrels – Hope means everything when you’ve got nothing, and hope’s all I have when I leave my brother, Jayden, to check on the baby rabbits.

Just Let Go – Courtney Walsh – He shouldn’t be here.

The Story Peddler – Lindsay A. Franklin – #1 the Weaver trilogy – Colored ribbons of light poured from my fingers.

Together Forever – Jody Hedlund – #2 Orphan Train -Marianne Neumann’s fingers were shaking so hard she could barely pry open the first record book.

Storm Front – Susan May Warren – # 5 Montana Rescue – Ty Remington blames the homemade orange marmalade cake for why he found himself huddled under an overhang off some faraway path in Glacier National Park, shivering, praying he might live through the night.

No Less Days – Amanda G. Stevens – His books were burning.

Lone Witness – Rachel Dylan – #2 Atlanta Justice – Guilty. That’s the only possible verdict.

Looking into You – Chris Fabry – There is no greater power on earth than a mother’s love.