Raney & Levine by J.A. Schneider

The third novel in the embryo series lets go with a bang, setting the reader up for the rest of a no holds barred thrill ride. Jill Raney and Dr. Davis Levine are keeping watch over baby Jesse, an infant that has come under fire from religious extremist groups. According to these warped individuals, God is the only one who can bring a child into this world, and modern medicine has no place in the miracle of birth and conception. Honestly, I think if some of those folks could find a way to cut women (descendants of evil Eve) out of the equation, they would. While this is the third book in the series, I read it as a standalone and understood and enjoyed every bit of it. Kudos!

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The Lost Garden by Katherine Swartz. Published by Lion Hudson

When Marin Ellis’s father and second wife are killed in a car accident, the 37 year old finds herself guardian of her fifteen year old half sister Rebecca. The two start over in Bower House on the Cumbrian coast. There, Rebecca and Marin become fascinated with what appears to be the door to a secret garden. With help from local gardener Joss Fowler, they uncover a love story that dates back to the end of World War I.
This story took me to another time and place so completely, that I had a hard time readjusting to the 21st century when I finished reading

The Beach Hut by Cassandra Parkin. Published by Legend

Is there a spot more beautiful, more wild, than the Cornish coast? Finn and his sister Ava don’t think so, and they are fulfilling a childhood dream by building a beach hut (illegally) so they can spend time together before Ava embarks on a world tour. Donald, owner of the local pub just wants them both gone, there are too many memories of his dead wife and he just wants to raise his daughter Alicia, quietly and safely. But Alicia has no intention of being safe or quiet, she has dark secrets of her own and before the winter sets in, these characters will face a showdown as all their secrets are revealed. Beautiful scenery and compelling characters made this a stand out read for me

Hangman’s Game by Bill Syken. Published by St. Martins

A college injury sideline Nick Gallow’s dreams of plating quarterback for the NFL. He settles for the role of punter and five years into his career with the Philadelphia Sentinels, at least he’s comfortable, if not happy. When he witnesses a new all star draft pick being murdered, Nick stays out of it, his days of being a hero are long over. And he’s got to keep an eye on the rookie who seems to be aiming for Nick’s spot on the roster. But when a second attack sends the cops in the wrong direction, Nick knows he can’t hide any longer. Maybe there’s a hero inside him yet.

I will be the first to admit I don’t get football; the truth is I hate it. But I do love well written mysteries and I’m glad I gave this novel a chance. the mystery was definitely the high point for me, and the football angle, while important to the storyline, did not take center stage. A great read for sports lovers and mystery lovers

Flower Girl by David Marshall Hunt Published by IBPA

Rescued from the streets of Korea where she was selling flowers while awaiting being sold herself, a twelve-year-old girl is taken in by the CIA operative who will be her father. Now as an adult and a scientist with a very high security clearance, she is approached by her father, who has an idea for a new family business. He wants them to go into the father daughter assassin business. But during a return trip to Korea, she will come face to face with her old life and have to make some difficult choices

Don’t Turn Around by Caroline Mitchell. Published by Bookouture

It seems like a routine, if bloody stabbing. But DC Jennifer Knight has a feeling something more sinister is in play and a message from the “other side” convinces her. As the bodies pile up, Jennifer is convinced they are all connected. The murders are eerily similar to those of the Grim Reaper, the killer Jennifer’s own mother helped put behind bars 20 years earlier. Was her mother in error? Was the wrong man convicted? Or is there a copycat at work? In order to uncover the truth, Jennifer will not only have to confront her mother’s past, but her own in order to protect all that she holds dear.

Loved this book! A strong, independent, smart heroine and a hair raising plot made this a read in one sitting book!

Recipes for Melissa by Teresa Driscoll. Published by Bookouture

Melissa was only eight years old when her mother passed away. Now a young woman on the brink of starting her own life, she’s given a journal. A story of her life written by her mother. It contains her mother’s hopes and dreams for both herself and her daughter, sage advice for those difficult times when every girl needs her mother and even little recipes; food to celebrate and to comfort. There are also a few surprises for Melissa. Most importantly, she is able to feel her mother’s love and devotion, down through the years.

What a beautiful story. My mom is now 91 and I teared up more than once while reading. Nothing is more powerful and more lasting than a mother’s love and Driscoll does a lovely job reminding us of that fact