ONCE UPON A COWBOY

ONCE UPON A COWBOY                       MAGGIE McGINNIS

Yoga instructor Jessalyn Alcott radiates peace, calm, and serenity—on the outside. Inside, she still feels like the broken, desperate girl from the trailer park. She’s got dark secrets she can’t share, which is why she never lets her relationships go beyond the third date. But when she travels to the Whisper Creek dude ranch for a friend’s wedding, Jess is enchanted by a cowboy whose deep blue eyes, dimpled smile, and rock-hard body make it tough to remember why she keeps running scared.

Cole Driscoll has struggled to find his place on a family ranch where he’s always played second fiddle. His future might be uncertain, but he’s sure of one thing: He wants Jess by his side. Easier said than done. When it comes to getting close, she’s full of excuses, and he longs to fix the hurt he sees in her eyes. Now that she’s at Whisper Creek, there’s nothing he wants more than to break down the walls around her heart and heal her pain with the power of love.

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
Yoga instructor Jessalynn Alcott, goes with her friends to Whisper Creek for a friend’s wedding. Before she leaves Boston she receives a phone call from the past the past that she has not thought about for many years and was hopping not to have thought about again. Once she gets to the Ranch where the wedding is going to take place she ends up spending time with Cole another brother who is trying to find his place and as the both of them work with the kids that come to the ranch before the wedding they realize they enjoy each other’s company, more than a little. Neither one once to make the next move as each one has something from the past they must deal with first. From her phone call before she left to finding out her grandfather died and now receiving another letter at the ranch she is worried that her past cannot be left alone. She first one night tells her two friends what happened and though they at first are upset for her not telling them years ago they are there for her to help her. After a few days she reveals to Cole everything and he does not know how to take everything she told him. When he goes back to talk to her she is gone, gone to take care of the past and to put it behind her finally. When she is at the last part she is surprised but happy that Cole showed up and helped confront the two people that she needed to put behind her the most her mother and aunt. This is a very powerful story of her reclaiming her power over her life. A very good book. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 5 stars.

PLAYING FOR KEEPS

PLAYING FOR KEEPS                           KATE DONOVAN

When Erica McCall finally gets her big break in advertising, she knows just which spokesperson to pitch: gorgeous football superstar Johnny Spurling. She has followed his career since college and knows he’s perfect for the spot, even though it’s common knowledge his famous family doesn’t do product endorsements, ever. But Erica knows Johnny’s weak spot, and she’s confident she can use it to gain his trust and seal the deal.

Quarterback Johnny Spurling is running out of time. His father’s health is failing, and there’s one last thing he’s asked Johnny to do—settle down and produce a son, before it’s too late. Which means Johnny needs a new kind of girlfriend. No more casual hookups or high-maintenance divas. When his sister-in-law claims to have the perfect candidate, he urges her to set up a postseason blind date.

Then Johnny meets long-haired, long-legged Erica and can’t resist her outrageous proposal—or her. So he decides he’ll do the commercial and have one final, hot-as-hell fling before settling down. They set the ground rules, then proceed to break every one of them as fun turns to the kind of true romance that just doesn’t end with the final touchdown—and with luck, never ends at all.

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
This story begins with up and coming advertising PR, Erica McCall, settling a sexual harassment complaint with executives of the company she works for. Part of the deal is for her to be on the team to pitch a new ad idea to football quarterback Johnny Sparling, who everyone knows does now endorse alcohol commercials. Her pitch though has him thinking differently and also there is an attraction that they both feel during this meeting. She explains to him about her concept for the commercial and how it would be done in a way to not hurt his reputation and he is actually interested. He also knows he promised his father he would settle down and be serious in looking for a long term relationship. He father wanted him to get married and he has a blind date with a teacher after the super bowl. As the story goes along you get the feeling that he is not going to make it for that blind date. He also finds out about the guy in her office that made the sexual harassment towards her. When that same guy says some things about her during a party given by the company he takes care of the guy and the owner of the company finally fires the guy. He helps her to keep her voice and to let her know she did nothing wrong and that as much as they try not to be together they are made for each other. A good book and good characters. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 4 stars.

CHANGING THE GAME

CHANGING THE GAME                        STEPHEN LAROCHE

Changing the Game: A History of NHL Expansion celebrates an often-overlooked aspect of hockey history. The book provides comprehensive coverage of the NHL’s move into the American market in the 1920s along with the memorable expansions that began in 1967. Relive some great and painful moments from the debut seasons of forgotten teams such as the Montreal Maroons and California Seals along with fan favorites like the Boston Bruins and New York Rangers. Every player from every first-year roster is covered and nearly 100 players shared some of their memories of playing for hard-luck clubs. Additionally, readers can expect to find a great deal of relevant statistics to go along with outstanding photography.

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
This book is filled with information on every hockey team before the original six up to today’s teams. There is some information on the top players from the team in each chapter of section, and of course I am sure it was difficult for him to settle on players from some of the better teams. It is really difficult to talk about every team and I was not expecting that. Though I was expecting a history book. He does take you from the early 1900’s through the 20’s to the original six and then on to expansion, the WHL, another expansion, and the lastly some of the newer teams. He goes over some of the players like I mentioned, and rule changes, but mostly it is filled with information about the teams and some of the early stars of those teams and how they came to be. An interesting book full of a lot of information. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 3 stars.

A PROMISE OF FOREVER

A PROMISE OF FOREVER                      MARILYN PAPPANO

Sergeant First Class Avi Grant's return to Tallgrass, Oklahoma is a long-deferred wish come true. With her final tour in Afghanistan over, Avi can focus on her future-a job here at home and a family of her own. There's just one thing she has to do first: visit her beloved commanding officer's widow and share her grief. The last thing she expected was to feel an instant attraction to the woman's son. Too bad the sexy surgeon is impossible to ignore . . . and even harder to resist. 

The sting of his parents' divorce still niggles at Ben Noble. So when a warm, funny, and beautiful young sergeant arrives, mourning his stepfather's loss as strongly as his mother does, Ben can't help but feel conflicted. If his parents taught him anything, it's that love doesn't last-especially with a career soldier. But try as he might to keep his distance, Ben begins to see that Avi-and the spark she brings to his life-is the stuff forever is made of. As Avi's leave ticks away, can Ben convince her to take a chance on forever with him?

HUBBY'S REVIEW:


This story has a few different storylines. First there is Avi Grant who has come home to Tallgrass Oklahoma, to see Patricia Sanderson and tell her she is sorry for her loss. Her husband George, or Colonel Sanderson was Aviv’s commanding officer on her last deployment in Afghanistan. He was killed and they both are suffering a loss because he was the reason she joined the Army after seeing him in his dress uniform when she was ten years old. She enlisted her senior year in high school and was gone right after she graduated. Now home for the first time in years she has a week before her parents come back from their cruise. While visiting with Patricia she also meets her son doctor Ben Noble, who is still trying to deal with his mother leaving him and his two sisters to be with George when they were younger. Now that his father has passed away he is trying to put everything together or sort things out. As the weeks go by he ends up spending more time in Tallgrass with Avi than in Tulsa at his own practice. They both are trying to figure things out in their lives but the ideas they had are now being challenged by the feelings they have for one another. The one big problem is that she must report to Georgia for her next post and she tells him they can try long distance relationship but it has not worked for her in the past. She had already sign relist papers so even if she thought about leaving the Army she can’t for another four years. He does not want to move his practice to the town she is going to be in so it looks like there done. Plus he still must deal with his issues of the Army, and his mother leaving when he was younger. People around him are telling him to follow her and not to be like his father who never left, never wanted to go outside of his comfort zone. It is now time for him to do something if he truly wants a relationship. This is a good story and the characters are full of emotion and there is even conflict between two guys just because they are guys. I liked that. Overall a very good book. I got this book from netgalley. I give this 4 stars.

PURE PORK: AWESOMENESS

PURE PORK: AWESOMENESS               KEVIN GILLESPIE

"Like Bubba Gump and his shrimp, I have a million ways to cook pork because I love it so much. If I had only one animal to eat forevermore, I would eat pigs. You could have a pork chop one day, pulled pork another, and cured bacon the next day, and they’d all taste completely different. You can't do that with chicken. Chicken tastes like chicken no matter what part of the animal you eat. And I love beef and lamb, but they don't have the amazing versatility of pork. Pork can be the star of the show or a background flavor. But no matter where it shows up, pork is always welcome on my table."
---from the introduction, Kiss a Pig

On Bravo TV's season six of Top ChefKevin Gillespie became known for his love of pork. He literally wears it on his sleeve with his forearm tattoo. His first book, Fire in My Belly, a James Beard Award finalist, included his famous Bacon Jam. Now he shares his passion and love of pork in a book devoted entirely to the subject. Pure Pork Awesomeness celebrates pork's delicious versatility with more than 100 easy-to-follow recipes. Dig into everything from Bacon Popcorn and Bourbon Street Pork Chops to Korean Barbecued Pork Bulgogi, Vietnamese Spare ribs with Chilli and Lemongrass, and Banoffee Trifle with Candied Bacon. Organized like the pig itself, recipes use every cut of pork from shoulder and tenderloin to pork belly and ham. Find out how to buy the best-tasting pork available, differences among heritage breeds of pigs, and what to do with new cuts like "rib eye of pork". . . all from a witty, talented chef who knows the ins and outs of cooking pork at home.

HUBBY'S REVIEW:

This was an excellent cookbook full of east to read recipes and photos of the finished product. The main thing is that this is all about pork. The quality, how to select the cut you want and how to select the pork just in general. I think that was just one of the better parts of the book was to make sure that you have quality pork and how to make sure that way what you are making will turn out the best. First I was surprised by this book not thinking I would enjoy it, but he goes through most ethnic dishes I believe and of course there were some that I have never seen or heard before. That just makes it more entertaining. Overall an outstanding cook book. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 5 stars.

DARE TO TOUCH

DARE TO TOUCH                                     CARLY PHILLIPS

Olivia Dare, executive director of the Miami Thunder, and team travel director Dylan Rhodes share more than just a passion for football. Their chemistry is explosive--their feelings for each other intense. Yet Olivia has ended things for reasons he still can’t fathom and she won’t explain.

Unwilling to let something special go so easily, Dylan has been pursuing Olivia ever since. When the Pro-Bowl takes them to the tropical paradise of Hawaii, Dylan is determined to make sure their time together isn’t all business. What happens in paradise is life altering but once Olivia admits her deepest secret and fear, will Dylan still want the forever he’s been pushing for?

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
Dylan Rhodes has been hot for Olivia Dare, for a long time. They showed up in one of the other books. The problem is he wants to take it to the next, next level and in some ways that scares her. Is he doing this for real or is he just being him, Dylan. Every excuse she comes with he has one for them being together. She just doesn’t know that he wants her for lifetime and it is now for him to prove to her that they can have it all. Job, happiness, life as a couple. Olivia must get over her own fear and explain it to Dylan. A lot of this takes place while they are at the pro bowl and that makes their time together that more intense. A good book along with the other books. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 4 stars.

DELAYED PENALTY

DELAYED PENALTY                               SOPHIA HENRY

She closed her heart long ago. He just wants to open her mind. For fans of Toni Aleo and Sawyer Bennett, the debut of Sophia Henry’s red-hot Detroit Pilots series introduces a hockey team full of complicated men who fight for love.

Auden Berezin is used to losing people: her father, her mother, her first love. Now, just when she believes those childhood wounds are finally healing, she loses something else: the soccer scholarship that was her ticket to college. Scrambling to earn tuition money, she’s relieved to find a gig translating for a Russian minor-league hockey player—until she realizes that he’s the same dangerously sexy jerk who propositioned her at the bar the night before.

Equal parts muscle and scar tissue, Aleksandr Varenkov knows about trauma. Maybe that’s what draws him to Auden. He also lost his family too young, and he channeled the pain into his passions: first hockey, then vodka and women. But all that seems to just melt away the instant he kisses Auden and feels a jolt of desire as sudden and surprising as a hard check on the ice.

After everything she’s been through, Auden can’t bring herself to trust any man, let alone a hot-headed puck jockey with a bad reputation. Aleksandr just hopes she’ll give him a chance—long enough to prove he’s finally met the one who makes him want to change.
 

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
Auden gets a job as a translator for a local hockey team the player being Russian and she being raised by her grandparents and her grandfather was a Russian professor for years at Michigan University. When she first meets Aleksandr it is not at the hockey rink but at a bar. So when they finally meet at the rink after the game and he begins to act like a jerk she puts him in his place. He is actually excited by this and though she does not want to admit it she is attracted to him as well. She has issues with people leaving in her life, father before she was born, mom killed when she was 6, so she does not want to start anything with him because she knows he will be leaving. He is good enough to play in the NHL so that means he will be moving from the town they're in. He has lost his parents as well so now he is working on helping to see that he will not be leaving that they will still be together. He will come back. This is a very good story for the author's’ first book. I liked the characters, the hockey, and I could relate to the overall story of the two characters. A very good book. I got this book from netgalley. I give this 5 stars.

THE JOY OF BALLPARK FOOD

THE JOY OF BALLPARK FOOD            BENNETT JACOBSTEIN

Baseball is a game that is identified with food. We even sing about it at every ballpark during the seventh inning stretch: "….buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack..." The famous song was written by Jack Norworth in 1908. From the early part of the twentieth century until the 1980s, classic baseball fare consisted mostly of hot dogs, ice cream, peanuts, and Cracker Jack. Then ballparks slowly began to sell new items. A proliferation of new food offerings during the 1990s was fueled by the opening of twelve new major league ballparks. Now, teams around the country sell a variety of exotic food as well as wide variety of hot dogs. The Joy of Ballpark Food: From Hot Dogs to Haute Cuisine begins with the history of the first hot dog at a ball game and concludes with a culinary tour of all 30 major league ballparks. 100% of royalties from the sales of this book are donated directly to the Second Harvest Foodbank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties of California.

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
A wonderful book about baseball and food that is now being offered at the different ballparks throughout the country. Yes you can still get hot dogs, and cracker jacks, but at some parks you can now get crab cakes, or barbeque. Sushi, or really just about anything other than a hotdog if that is what you want. Even some of the hotdogs are now special. Full of pictures and very good easy detail description about each ball park found this book to be very interesting. Something that brings most people back to summertime baseball, crackerjacks, and hot dogs or my daughter sushi. The times have certainly have changed. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 5 stars.

10 WAYS TO SAY "I LOVE YOU"

10 WAYS TO SAY: "I LOVE YOU"       JOSH McDOWELL


To have and to hold from this day forward, to love and to cherish...

That's where all the romance novels end, but it's not the end of your love story. The wedding vows are just the beginning of your marriage. You've made the choice to be with your spouse. To maintain a healthy relationship, you'll need to keep making wise choices...from this day forward.

Author and speaker Josh McDowell has been learning that lesson for more than 40 years, and now he shares the insightful, practical choices that make a marriage thrive. Learn the power of choosing tomake your spiritual life a priority resolve conflicts quickly keep your love life fresh master the art of communication become a great listener

This straightforward, concise resource will teach you how to love and cherish your spouse. You'll never regret investing in your marriage!

HUBBY'S REVIEW:
I this book to be a lot of things that my wife and I do already and after 36 years of marriage I know I could have used this book when I was younger. I do believe that this is a wonderful book for couples to read and is very helpful and can also be very practical. One thing I do know is that both my wife and I are committed to each other and getting married at a young age we were not expected to last, but it has been our faith that has made us work together in our partnership and has made for a stronger marriage. I think this book is a good read. I got this book from netgalley.  I give this 4 stars.

PRIMAL FORCE (A K-9 RESCUE) AUTHOR HERE FRIDAY: D.D. AYRES WRITTEN INTERVIEW 7PM PST

Coming Friday
D.D. Ayres


Author of:


Passion is always worth fighting for…

Jori Garrison trains dogs for Warrior Wolf Pack, which provides service animals for disabled veterans. Four years ago, she was wrongly convicted of a crime—thanks to her no-good ex-fiancĂ©. Now she just wants to live her life in peace with her beloved dogs. No men, no complications. But it’s hard to play it cool when a lethally hot male is on her tail—and the attraction is fierce, mutual, and dangerous…

PRIMAL FORCE

Lauray "Law" Batisse is a Military Police veteran who was wounded in Afghanistan. Haunted by the loss of his K-9 partner in combat, he’s reluctant to accept a service dog named Samantha into his life. But once he meets her trainer—the gorgeous Jori Garrison—he can’t fight his primal instincts. And neither can Jori. This sexy alpha male might be the only man strong enough to unleash her desires. And when unseen enemies start hunting them down, he and his new K-9 partner might be her only hope… to survive.
 

Hubby's Review:
 Jori Garrison is a dog trainer for a center that trains service dogs. This story is a little different in that the vet Lauray Batisse was a K-9 officer before going into the service and was also military police in the service and worked with his own dog. While he was in Afghanistan he was attacked and his dog was killed and now having a new dog is hard for him to get used to along with losing a leg. He is also working on wanting to get back on the force but it is taking more time than he was expecting. Jori is helping him with the dog that he wants to give back but the dog does not want to leave and then they also have a bound and are trying to work things out when she tells him about her past. They then find out that they are both after the same company or same man who happens to be a criminal. This was a very good story and for me a little different than her other two books that I read even though they are all about dogs this one went into a little more detail. A good book. I got this book from netgalley.



A veteran author of romance and women’s fiction, D.D. Ayres is new to Romantic Suspense. She believes the lure of romance is always the human connection. Put that connection in physical jeopardy, and we learn a bit more about who we really are.
With her K-9 Rescue series, D.D. hopes you will enjoy her sexy, suspenseful portrayals of K-9 teams at their best.
D.D. lives in Fort Worth,Texas with her husband.

Interview Schedule: Guest Authors: Every Friday 7 pm PST. OUR GUEST THIS WEEK: AUTHOR OF: OLD CAFE: MARCI BOUDREAUX FUN STARTS WEDS.

Author: Here Friday 7 pm PST. New Authors added in Red Dec. 15 – Marci Boudreaux Old CafĂ© 1 Rad-Reader Reviews: w...