Thursday, July 20, 2017

The Cottage at Firefly Lake by Jen Gilroy (TLC Book Tours)

Are you ever able to truly let go of the past?  As a teenager Charlotte Gibbs loved visiting the family cottage on Firefly Lake.  While her father was distant and off having affairs, Charlotte loved the simplicity of time spent at the lake with her mother and sister.  Most of all, she loved Sean Carmichael.  Friends as children, they grew into teenage lovers that imagined a world together.  Unfortunately, events took them in other directions.

Now eighteen years later, Charlotte is unexpectedly back. Now a war torn journalist, Charlotte is back with her sister and nieces to sell the family cottage after her mother’s death.  Sean is now a divorced Dad with a teenage son who still has feelings for Charlotte.  Will these two be able to resolve past differences?  And will Charlotte sell the cottage to a developer who will put the Carmichael’s out of business?

I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  It was a perfect light read for the car on a recent family vacation.  I enjoyed that both characters had depths and issues to work through.  Sean has the responsibilities of raising a son and keeping a family business together while Charlotte has her own demons from her PTSD to work though.  I was intrigued by the storyline that you aren’t quite sure why the two of them broke up and I really wanted to know.  As the story progressed, it pealed by the layers until the full story was told.
The Cottage at Firefly Lake is an enjoyable romance with intriguing characters and storyline. It’s the perfect light read for your summer vacation.

Book Source:  Review Copy as part of the TLC Book Tour.  Thank-you!

 The Cottage at Firefly Lake is the first book in the Firefly Lake series. The next book, Summer on Firefly Lake, comes out on July 25, 2017.

The Café by the Sea by Jenny Colgan

What happens when a small town girl that left for the big city has to return home to her small town for her job?  Especially when her small town is a remote island on the very north of Scotland and everyone in town judges her for not taking care of her brothers and father after her mother’s death.  What happens is a compelling story that was part romance, part family drama, part humor, and 100% lovable.

Flora is sent by her handsome boss that doesn’t notice her back to the home she had abandoned, a northern Scottish Island.  She is to help an eccentric American, Colton Rogers, to convince the Islanders that his new resort on the Island is a great idea.  She also can use her influence to show him why the Islanders don’t like him and how he can use their unique skills to help make his resort even better.  Will Flora ever gain the notice of her handsome boss?  Will she find love on the island?  Can she make Colton Roger’s plan a success?  Can she help her brothers and father out?

I read this book quickly over my vacation, I stayed up way to late reading it as I couldn’t stop.  It was a great read for the summer.  I loved the setting, I really want to visit the north wilds of Scotland.  I also loved all of the characters and wanted to live amongst them.  There was plenty of humor in the novel, but I really loved the family drama.  I love how Flora is forced to deal with her mother’s death and really gets to know her brothers as adults.

Overall, if you are looking for a funny, unique novel with great characters, tasty sounding food, and a fantastic setting, look no further – The Café by the Sea is for you!

Book Source: E-book Review Copy from William Morrow. Thank-you!

The Fire by Night by Teresa Messineo

The Fire by Night is a novel about two American nurses during WWII.  They were friends before the war, but are stationed in very different places.  Jo McMahon is stationed in France and has lost her hospital convoy. Now all that stands between her patients and death is Jo herself trying to keep her patients alive as the Germans grow ever near her.  In the Pacific, Kay is trapped in a Japanese Prisoner of War camp in Manila.  As conditions deteriorate, Kay thinks back to the moments of bliss she shared with her secret husband, a handsome airman that she meet in Hawaii before Pearl Harbor.

I thought both storylines were very interesting.  I was particularly interested in Kay’s storyline.  I had never heard of the siege of the Malinta Tunnel on Corregidor Island in the Philippines.  I found it fascinating and very scary.  Messineo wrote the scenes masterly for this part of the novel with the appropriate amount of tenseness.  I liked the characters and enjoyed how they represented the two theatres of the war in a very realistic fashion.  War as a nurse is not all romance.

Speaking of romance, that was the downfall of the novel to me.  I didn’t really feel the romance that either of the women had.  While the situations they were in were bleak and very sad when you are reading the novel, the romance was a bit jarring and I also though the interlude of how they became friends over their shared sexual assault experience in New York City to be strange.  I did like how the novel addressed what happened after the war and how the women were able to move on in life.

Overall, The Fire by Night is an intriguing look at life as a Battlefield nurse in WWII.

Book Source: E-book Review Copy from William Morrow. Thank-you!