On the advice of a friend, I’ve decided to try a lightning-round approach to catch up on my reviews from the past month. I’ve read some great books so I hope you’ll find something that interests or intrigues you here. I’ll include affiliate links where possible so you can click right through to them.
1. Joys of Juniper by Valerie Comer
This series just keeps getting better and better for me. Comer brings such fresh energy to each new story that they never feel like just the next one in a predictable series. This one took several twists that I did not see coming, and I’ve read pretty much every single book this author has written! Seth completely won my heart very quickly in this story. I so desperately wanted him to completely take hold of the forgiveness he had found in Jesus, and it was absolutely beautiful and very satisfying to walk with him through that journey. I didn’t connect as much with Ava, but I wanted them to get together because Seth loved her so much.
One of my favorite parts of this story was seeing characters from previous books who had only recently come to the Lord show such growth and maturity as they loved and shepherded Seth and Ava through the twists and turns of their story. I long for a community like the ones Valerie Comer creates, and it is her communities that will always keep me coming back for more! Can’t wait for the next one! I’ve been waiting for Basil and Hailey’s story for years!!!
2. Give Me Another Chance, Cowboy by Valerie Comer
I am really enjoying this spin-off Cowboy series written by Valerie Comer! Whereas most of her other books focus on the strength of community for building people up, this one is set in a dysfunctional family. The characters have to rely on God and find ways to build their own support systems, and I really like how Comer is handling that new dynamic in this series. Travis and Dakota frustrated me to no end, but it was inspiring to see them continue to fight deception, anger, and generational curses to be who they were made to be and to find each other.
3. Long Shadows by Cathe Swanson
I have been wanting to know Roy and Mona’s story since reading what has become book 4 in this wonderful series by Cathe Swanson. One of my favorite things about this author is that her books aren’t formulaic in any way I can see, so I think it’s fitting that she has written and released the books in this series in a non-formulaic order – 1, 2, 4, and now 3. 🙂
I love how this book defies being classified into a single genre as well. It’s part romance, part mystery, part women’s fiction, along with several others I don’t even know names for because they are so unique. I love how this book tackles some really tough subjects with both grace and mercy, and I have even found it influencing some of the decisions I have made over the past few weeks since reading it with regards to my teen daughters’ outings and use of social media.
I highly recommend you read this book (but I really think you should start from book 1 for the full effect!)
4. The Nature of a Lady by Roseanna M. White
It’s always cause for a party in my house when Roseanna White releases a new book! I have yet to find one I didn’t love, and I frequently recommend them and loan them to others. She has a unique voice for historical fiction, and I absolutely love it! One thing I particularly enjoy is the fact that she has a number of heroines who are mathematicians and scientists in the early 1900s! I think they provide such great heroines for my daughters, and I personally really enjoy reading about them.
Elizabeth in this book is a naturalist. Her love of nature was infectious, and I enjoyed getting to know her character as well as that of Oliver. But I have to admit that their story and romance was overshadowed for me by Mabena and Casek, who I found far more interesting and entertaining. I felt they rather stole the show, and I was thrilled about it!
Mamm-Wynn, another secondary character, was also delightful, and her exploits with Oliver’s grandfather reminded me a bit of Jennifer Beckstrand’s Huckleberry Hill characters Anna and Felty, who I absolutely adore!
I enjoyed the themes of faith and science, as well as family and forgiveness. And while I personally found the “secondary” characters and storylines in this book more fascinating and inspiring than those on the cover and in the book blurb, that didn’t take away from my enjoyment of this book in any way, and I am thoroughly looking forward to the next books in this series!!
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher.
How About You?
Well, that’s all for this month! Which one of these looks the most interesting to you? Have you read any of them? What books would you recommend to me?