LOVE IN A SMALL TOWN                    ZOE YORK
Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

Love in a Small Town (Pine Harbour #1)Six years. Two break ups. One divorce. They should be over each other.

Police officer and army reservist Rafe Minelli knows better than to tell his wife no, particularly since they aren't married anymore. She can’t hightail it out of town, though, not when they’ve finally broken through the post-divorce cold war status quo.

Olivia Minelli needs to leave Pine Harbour. It’s just too hard to see Rafe moving on without her—even if he says he doesn’t want to. But when a new and exciting job falls into her lap, she needs to choose: protect her heart, or take the new job and risk getting emotionally entangled with her ex-husband. Again.

In love in a small town Olivia and Rafi, were married once and they still have feeling for each other but don’t know what to do about them. he at least thinks they should try to get back together, but she does not want to even though her body and heart are telling her she is still in love with him. What makes everything more difficult is that they live in a small town where everyone knows what happens the second it happens and they cannot stop running into each other. This is at times very funny and at other times sad, it is like what happens in a relationship. Only instead of not saying something it is like one of them has to say the one thing that will hurt the other one. That is when you know that they still have feelings for each other but must get past the pain of the break up. A good story and good characters, I liked them all, and this is a fast paced story. I finished it in one night, a really good book. I got this book from net galley.


Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

Shotgun LovesongsHank, Leland, Kip and Ronny were all born and raised in the same Wisconsin town — Little Wing — and are now coming into their own (or not) as husbands and fathers. One of them never left, still farming the family's land that's been tilled for generations. Others did leave, went farther afield to make good, with varying degrees of success; as a rock star, commodities trader, rodeo stud. And seamlessly woven into their patchwork is Beth, whose presence among them—both then and now—fuels the kind of passion one comes to expect of love songs and rivalries.

Now all four are home, in hopes of finding what could be real purchase in the world. The result is a shared memory only half-recreated, riddled with culture clashes between people who desperately wish to see themselves as the unified tribe they remember, but are confronted with how things have, in fact, changed.

There is conflict here between longtime buddies, between husbands and wives — told with writing that is, frankly, gut-wrenching, and even heartbreaking. But there is also hope, healing, and at times, even heroism. It is strong, American stuff, not at all afraid of showing that we can be good, too — not just fallible and compromising. Shotgun Lovesongs is a remarkable and uncompromising saga that explores the age-old question of whether or not you can ever truly come home again — and the kind of steely faith and love returning requires.

An interesting look at a group of friends from their time of growing up together to all meeting after so many years later. Some are still living in the same town others went on to make a name for themselves. One couple is letting their friend an ex rodeo star who got severely injured live on their ranch and still a few others are still jealous of the girl who is now women as they were when they were in high school. This is a very good story at a look at can you go home again? At least with the idea of how some people have changed and some are still trying to grow up. I thought this to be a good book. Well written and the characters seemed real. I got this book from net galley.


8 HOURS TO DIE                                     J.R. CARROLL
Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

8 Hours to DieWhen the past comes knocking, it will not be denied ...

Ex-cop turned criminal lawyer Tim Fontaine and his wife Amy are heading for their weekender – a restored farmhouse in remote bushland known as Black Pig Bend.

But even before they've eaten dinner, three outlaw bikers arrive on the scene. Suddenly Tim's house becomes a fortress. Who are these people? Why have they come? Who sent them?

As the lights go out and darkness descends, their idyllic world is transformed into a nightmare from which there is no waking up. Tim must grapple not just with formidable adversaries, but with unsettling questions relating to his own past, both as cop and lawyer, and even to his marriage.

But even if they survive this night against appalling odds, the ordeal is far from over. For when the past comes knocking, it will not be denied ...

This book is a thriller about a husband and that are looking forward to a getaway, so they go to their beach house. But Tim and Amy are in for more for than a relaxing weekend when Tim’s past comes looking for him. This story not only looks at the couple but also at each one of the men who take them hostage. A very unique way of telling the story and actually I thought made it a little more suspenseful. You must read it to find out what happens not giving anything away, except a good book and well written. I got this book from net galley.


AMERICAN SAINT                                    JOAN BARTHEL
Posted: Sept. 4, 2014

American Saint: The Life of Elizabeth SetonIn this riveting biography of Elizabeth Seton critically acclaimed and bestselling author Joan Barthel tells the mesmerizing story of a woman whose life featured wealth and poverty, passion and sorrow, love and loss. Elizabeth was born into a prominent New York City family in 1774. Her father was the chief health officer for the Port of New York and she lived down the block from Alexander Hamilton. She danced at George Washington's sixty-fifth Birthday Ball wearing cream slippers, monogrammed. Catholicism was illegal in New York when she was born; Catholic priests seen in the city were arrested, sometimes hung. When Elizabeth and her wealthy husband Will sailed to Italy in a doomed attempt to cure his tuberculosis, she and her family were quarantined in a damp dungeon. And when Elizabeth later became a Catholic, she was so scorned that people talked of burning down her house. American Saint is the inspiring story of a brave woman who forged the way for the other women who followed and who made a name for herself in a world entirely ruled by men. Elizabeth resisted male clerical control of her religious order, as nuns are doing today, and the publication of her story could not be more timely. Maya Angelou has contributed the foreword.

This book about the life of Elizabeth Seton, who went on to become the first person born from the U.S. to be canonized a Saint. The first part of this book is like a whose, whose in our founding as a nation. Though her father was went back to England during the war. When he came back he was not treated like some other people who had followed with the King because he was a Doctor and they were hard to come by in any town. Her mother died during child birth to her younger sister and her father remarried into the Roosevelt family, but her step mother did not take a liking to her or her new sister. Raised in a Protestant home she was taught to read the bible but more than that her father believed that young women should now certain languages, music, math etc. very which was very progressive for that time. By her late teens early twenties she was going to dances and parties with the Hamilton’s and other people that helped shape our country. During one of these gatherings she meet a young man named William Seton and they were married some time later. They would eventually have five children. William Seton along with his father and brother owned a shipping business that would eventually go out of business. Her husband being so sick was told to travel to Italy. Just the two of them went to Pisa, Italy and were put into quarantine. William would die two days later and a women from the town came to help her to bury her husband. Then she started to spend days together and she started going to church with her. What was amazing to her was that at every mass the Eucharist was celebrated, her church only celebrated the Eucharist was only on special days. The more she stayed and went to church the more she was enjoying the celebrating of mass. When she came back to America she converted to catholic, and some members of her family stop talking to from that time forward. Her sister in law, a daughter and some other friends converted. By 1809 she needed to leave New York and went to Baltimore where a Bishop there help her get started with property and they started a school for needed children and widow mothers. Later this would become the sisters of charity, the first American congregation of religious sisters. They would later go on to open more schools and orphanages always looking out for the needs of children. One of her daughters would go on to become a sister and later a grandson would become a Priest. This was a very well written book with a lot of information, and the author made the story very interesting. A very good book. I got this book from net galley.


THE NIGHT VISITOR                               DIANNE EMLEY
Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

The Night VisitorGorgeous and successful, Rory Langtry seemed to have it all. Daughter of a movie star and sister of a supermodel, Rory was engaged to sexy artist, Junior Lara. But her bright future went dark one terrible, bloody night that left her sister dead and the accused murderer—Junior—in an extended coma.
Now, five years later, Rory appears to have put the past behind her. She has a wonderful new fiancé and heads a successful cosmetics company. Yet dark secrets threaten. Across town, Junior lies close to death but before he departs he seeks to clear his name.
It starts with a feeling. It turns into a vision. Soon Rory is having sensations that only Junior could experience—from the horrifying to the erotic. Then she learns details about the awful night that only Junior could know, newfound knowledge with potentially fatal consequences. When another act of violence rocks her family, Rory plunges deeper into the unsolved mystery, led by an inexplicable visitor to a dangerous time and place where all will be revealed at last. But until then, Junior will not let her go.

This is a unique story in the way that it is brought out to the reader. Rory is engaged to an up and coming artist Junior Lara. But one night their world is shattered when Rory’s sister is killed and Junior is left in a vegetable state. It is now five years later and Rory is newly engaged and Juniors family still blames her and her rich family for all of the pain that has happen in their life. The night of a party Juniors brother shows up and he is accusing Rory for putting his brother in the hospital and ruing their life. He was then shot by her step father and when the police showed up some of the detectives were the same ones at the other crime scene five years ago and that case was still open. Within a week things started to happen to Rory and they were not just in her dreams at night. This is when the story really picks up and for me. The pace of the book was faster. From about the middle to the end it was really who was the killer? And why? I was totally surprised by who it was and why. This was a very good book and the charters in the book felt like real people like you might have known at one time or another. The writing was just as good also. A very good and good story. I got this book from net galley.


TARGET AMERICA                                  SCOTT McEWEN
Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

Target America (Sniper Elite, #2)When Chechen terrorists manage to smuggle a Cold War era Russian nuke across the Mexican-American border, the President is forced to reactivate the only unit capable of stopping them: Navy SEAL sniper Gil Shannon and his brash team of SEALs and Delta Force fighters. First introduced in Sniper Elite: One Way Trip, hailed by Publishers Weekly as a “meaty thriller” with “snappy dialogue and well-timed humor,” Shannon and his team were run out of the military after defying direct orders and instead choosing to save the life of one of their own.

In Target America, Gil and his team, many of whom had gone rogue, are reunited as an off-the-books Special Ops unit that must race against the clock to save the country from nuclear destruction.

This book picks up from the last book with some or the same people, only now some of the men are not part of the military now for their part in the unauthorized rescue of a female pilot. They are now part of a black ops team. This story keeps you going as a reader with non-stop action and debate between military people and politicians. You get the feeling like this part is real anyway with the arguing and one person having to step up to make a decision. Action takes you from the black ops people to the terrorists, and to some of the former military personal that got kicked out and are now coming up with unique ways to stay busy and make money at the same time. This is a very well written book that flows real well and for me was a fast read because of the story line. Parts of the story actual seem like they could happen. I also liked how they gave credit to two former Seals who were killed in Benghazi, Libya, on September 12, 2012. Tyrone Snowden Woods and Glenn Anthony Doherty, who like the characters in the book did not have to go there but did anyway against overwhelming numbers to save Americans. This story feels like all service men active and not active. One of their characters said our family has been fighting since Guadalcanal, and you get that feeling from this book and this story. I really enjoyed the story. I got this book from net galley. 


LINCOLN'S BOYS                                    JOSHUA ZEITZ
Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

Lincoln's Boys: John Hay, John Nicolay, and the War for Lincoln's ImageLincoln’s official secretaries John Hay and John Nicolay enjoyed more access, witnessed more history, and knew Lincoln better than anyone outside of the president’s immediate family. Hay and Nicolay were the gatekeepers of the Lincoln legacy. They read poetry and attendeded the theater with the president, commiserated with him over Union army setbacks, and plotted electoral strategy. They were present at every seminal event, from the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation to Lincoln’s delivery of the Gettysburg Address—and they wrote about it after his death.

In their biography of Lincoln, Hay and Nicolay fought to establish Lincoln’s heroic legacy and to preserve a narrative that saw slavery—not states’ rights—as the sole cause of the Civil War. As Joshua Zeitz shows, the image of a humble man with uncommon intellect who rose from obscurity to become a storied wartime leader and emancipator is very much their creation.

Drawing on letters, diaries, and memoirs, Lincoln’s Boys is part political drama and part coming-of-age tale—a fascinating story of friendship, politics, war, and the contest over history and remembrance.

This is a very good book about the two men who became the secretaries for President Lincoln. It begins with a chapter each of their early lives before they meet Lincoln. Nicolay, who was trying to get an interview with Lincoln after his nomination was disappointed at first when the answer was no but then found out that he was hired to be with Mr. Lincoln while he campaigning. This turned into a full time job when he was elected. Hay got the job through a friend of Mr. Lincoln and though both these young men would be the envy of older men, newspaper men for pretty much the remainder of their lives. One of the things I did know was that both Nicolay and Hay were sent out a few times during Lincoln’s time as President to negotiate on his behalf. Nicolay to Minnesota and Colorado and Hay to Florida. Both would come under harsh words from Mrs. Lincoln, but they just kept on working did not let her words get to them or tell her that the President wanted a person their when she did not like a certain individual. After his election to a second term he gave them each a post in Paris, he must have known that Mrs. Lincoln was making it rough on them. Hay did tell people that he would have stand if the President would have asked him. After the President was shot they stayed and helped Robert Todd Lincoln go through all of the paper work. This turned out to be over 18,000 documents and 42,000 copies of pieces paper, letters, and telegrams, copies of outgoing as well, memorandums, congressional reports, and speeches. Robert Lincoln, had everything shipped to a vault in Chicago, where it stayed. Though he would get requests from people he would always decline their request. Around 6 years after the Presidents death the first biography came out. It was not very good and filled false information. A few years later Lincoln law partner came out with one and again was not correct but most people believe it because he was his partner. Meanwhile the two men were continuing with their lives both were married, Nicolay was an officer with the Supreme Court. Hay had done another foreign job this one in Madrid, came back was working in New York as a reporter and asst. editor and then got married. He also became asst. sec. of state. During this whole time the two men always kept in touch and decided that they should write a biography of President Lincoln. A publishing company offered the money and they began. They also got in touch with Robert Lincoln, he allowed them to go through the boxes. This would take them 12 years and they would show how it was Lincoln, not Chase, Seward, or any other person that got the country through the crisis. They also stayed away from attacking or criticizing Mrs. Lincoln where other books went on to attack her they made a point to stay away from that point. The book got mixed results, it would be many years later that it would be acknowledge for a truly good piece of work. One of the last things that Hay did as Secretary of State was put in to Congress a request to build a monument for Lincoln, it was approved but both men passed away before it was finished. This was a very good book with a lot of information, well written. A really good book. I got this book from net galley. 


Posted:  Sept. 4, 2014

American Statecraft: The Story of the U.S. Foreign ServiceAmerican Statecraft is a fascinating and comprehensive look at the unsung men and women of the U.S. Foreign Service whose dedication and sacrifices have been a crucial part of our history for over two centuries. Fifteen years in the making, veteran journalist and historian Moskin has traveled the globe conducting hundreds of interviews both in and out of the State Department to look behind the scenes at America’s “militiamen of diplomacy.”

As the nation’s eyes and ears, our envoys pledge a substantial part of their lives in foreign lands working for the benefit of their nation. Endeavoring to use dialogue and negotiation as their instruments of change, our diplomats tirelessly work to find markets for American business, rescue its citizens in trouble abroad, and act in general as “America’s first line of defense” in policy negotiations, keeping America out of war. But it took generations to polish these skills, and Moskin traces America’s full diplomatic history, back to its amateur years coming up against seasoned Europeans during the days of Ben Franklin, now considered the father of the U.S. Foreign Service, and up to the recent Benghazi attack. Along the way, its members included many devoted and courageous public servants, and also some political spoilsmen and outright rogues.

An important contribution to the political canon, American Statecraft recounts the history of the United States through the lens of foreign diplomacy.

This is a book that takes a look at our foreign service from the revolution thru Benghazi. He goes starts off mainly with the idea that our foreign service at one time was very strong for the type of people that were selected to their posts. Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, to name just a few. Then once after the revolution you had Thomas Jefferson as Secretary of State and then John Quincy Adams who went to school in Europe and spoke different langue’s become an ambassador. The author goes on to show that for up through WWII men and women that were being selected for posts were people that had experience in some form of government or came out of an area that instead of leaving government service all together they would go on to a foreign post. They had a sense of how diplomats were to conduct themselves and could tell when a problem was going to happen in the country that they were in. it was after WWII that when posts started slowly been given to people who had no knowledge of how things took place and were given these assignments or posts as a way of saying thankyou for a campaign contribution. Once this practiced started it became more common place to the point where Foreign Service are now and for years is weaker than ever. I do disagree with the author take on Benghazi, he glossed over it and really said that there was nothing that could be done. I have read other books about the subject and they showed documents that should have been a red flag by at least our State Dep Who over sees over thing and still nothing was done. I thought over all it was a good book except for the 20 pages or so. I got this book from net galley.


LET’S WELCOME KATE CARLEY  AUTHOR OF: Rad-Reader:  Where did the idea for the storyline come from? Kate:   I love...