Tag Archives: Kristan Higgins

Readers Pick Their Favorite Books

Barbara Vey -- January 2nd, 2014

readers

The readers have spoken and named their favorite books of of 2013.  The rules were:

1.  Only one book could be nominated.

2.  It had to be published in 2013.

Seems simple, but readers love their books and many favorites listed were whole series and lists of books.  To keep things fair, only the first book listed was counted and if a series was nominated (instead of titles) it was disqualified.  So here’s the top vote getters.

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1.  Out of Turn by Tiffany Snow

2.  A Ghostly Undertaking by Tonya Kappes

3.  Striking Distance by Pamela Clare

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4.  The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

And a 5 way tie for 5th place.

5.  A Thousand Lies by Sharon Sala

5.  The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin

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5.  Duke of Midnight by Elizabeth Hoyt

5.  A Beautiful Mess by T.K. Leigh

5. Turn on a Dime by Tiffany Snow

There were plenty of other books nominated, so please go back and check them all out.  Congratulations to all and here’s to a a new year of exciting new books.

Bottom Line:  Today would have been my parents 63rd Wedding Anniversary.  Missing them and raising a glass.

Authors Recommending Books

Barbara Vey -- September 5th, 2013

authorsrecommendingbooks

Welcome back to our new regular feature, Authors Recommending Books.  Want to know what authors read in their spare time?  Check it out here.  Want to know what your favorite author is reading?  Ask it in the comments section and I’ll try to get the answer for you.  Good books aren’t always just new books as you can see here.  Authors can send their recommendations to maggiemaepw @ gmail.com.

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The Best ManJeanne Adams recommends The Best Man by Kristan Higgins.  Kristin blood_trinityhas a knack for pulling the heartstrings even as she gets the reader involved with her quirky, funny and fabulous characters.  You get to know the town, the family and feel a part of every story she writes.

Tracey Devlyn highly recommends Blood Trinity by Dianna Love and Sherrilyn Kenyon. I love the entire Belador series! Evalle is bad ass and the sexual tension between Evalle and Storm keeps me turning the pages.

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Shirley Jump highly recommends Carolina Home by Virginia Kantra. I love everything she writes! She never fails to make me cry!

Tonya Kappes recommends It Takes a Witch:  A Wishcrafter Mystery by Heather Blake.  Heather  delivers a page turning mystery with many subplots that tie right into the main plot. Blake has built a magical world full of whimsical characters and creatures with a fun loving witch family in the Enchanted Village. Blake will have you wondering who did what and laughing all at the same time.

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Flashpoint
Leaving HavenAllison Leotta recommends Kathleen McCleary’s Leaving Haven.  The first chapter starts with a woman leaving a much-wanted baby at the hospital, and the rest of the book goes back in time to reveal why she did it.  This is an emotionally charged and incredibly plotted story about friendship, love, betrayal, and consequences.

Adrienne Giordano recommends Flashpoint by Suzanne Brockmann. Flashpoint is part of the Troubleshooters series and was the first book I read by Suzanne. After reading it, I went back and read each book in the series and love her flawed characters.

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English GirlMarilyn Baron recommends The English Girl, by Daniel Silva sign-off-320(Suspense and Foreign Intrigue). I love Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon character—master assassin, art restorer and spy—and this novel may be the best yet in his series. Mystery, mistresses, mayhem and great writing. This book has it all.

Mary Buckham loves Patricia McLinn’s, Sign Off. The debut of a new mystery series the finely developed characters, whip-sharp dialogue and setting put this on my keeper shelf.

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Lady AwakenedBeauty and the Bounty HunterAngie Fox recommends Beauty and the Bounty Hunter by Lori Austin (who also writes as Lori Handeland). Sweet, sexy and funny – with a plot that knocks westerns on their ear. I never knew what was going to happen next and I loved every minute of it.

Jeannie Lin says “The last book that blew me away was A Lady Awakened by Cecilia Grant. A widow in a desperate situation enlists a young nobleman to provide her with an heir that she can pass off as her late husband’s. The emotion between the hero and heroine built page upon page and felt so achingly real that you believed and hurt for them through every moment.

The winner of yesterday’s wonderful gift basket from Nancy Naigle is Crystal Fulcher.  Congratulations!  Please contact Nancy at nancy @ nancynaigle.com to claim your prize.

Bottom Line:  “The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.” ― Jane Austen

WW Ladies Book Club

Barbara Vey -- August 23rd, 2013

In association with the WW Ladies, I’ll be doing something new, a list of books coming out that week.  Starting next week, this feature will be on Thursdays.  All emails with info can be sent to:  maggiemaepw@gmail.com with New Release in the subject line.  Here’s the list I got this week, but I’m sure it will start getting longer soon.

Romancing Lady Stone by Delilah Marvelle-4

Release date: August 20, 2013

Say Yes To The Duke by Kieran Kramer -6

Release Date: August 27, 2013

 

The Perfect Ten by Dianna Love, et althe perfect 10

Release Date: August 19, 2013
 

 

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joysann

joysann

The Best Man by Kristan Higgins

Read by joysann

When the groom’s best man encourages a stop to her wedding at the altar, Faith Holland leaves her family’s vinyard home for a few years to pull her life together. When she returns, she finds Levi Cooper is the worst man ever to come across, but as he is now Police Chief, she seems to run into him everywhere. But now there is time to see past their history and find there might have always been a little something more.

I’m in love with Levi, but I can’t compete with Faith and I don’t want to. They deserve to find each other in this delightful romance. Filled with humor, passion, compassion, and heart-warming love, I laughed and I wept, and it wasn’t from the wine.

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Joan

Joan

The Sword Dancer by Jeannie Lin

Read by Joan

When a shipment of gold and jade is stolen from a security warehouse, traveling entertainers are suspect and thief catchers close in. While performing a beautiful sword dance, Wen Li Feng catches the eye of the most famous thief catcher Zheng Hao Han. She runs and Han sets out to bring her in, believing she was involved in the theft. He soon discovers he is in for a long and intriguing chase.

Based on a poem, Jeannie Lin has written a wonderful story that takes place in 848 AD China during the Tang Dynasty. Not knowing much about China, I found the characters and the settings drawing me in as did the movie Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing, only with a happily ever after ending. The Sword Dancer is exciting and enchanting right from the first page.

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Michelle

Michelle

A Bride For all Seasons by Margaret Brownley, Debra Clopton, Mary Connealy, BrideRevised_smRobin Lee Hatcher (Anthology)

Read by Michelle

Women traveling far distances to marry a men they have never met was refreshing and humorous.  The owner of The Hitching Post Mail Order Bride Catalogue rewrites the correspondence of the men and women to match exactly what the other needs.  Almost like “Dear Abby” of our time.  One story was Clay, who disliked children, was deceived by letters from Luvena , her sister’s four children, omitted from correspondence but fell in love with each one of them.  Turns out his father was never there for him and feared being a father.  The children and Luvena were just what Clay needed to be complete.

Reading about the year 1870 with Mail order brides is a feel good book. I found it refreshing and fascinating to read a clean book free of swearing and sex.

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joysann

joysann

The Red Plague Affair by Lilith Saintcrow

Read by joysann

Archibald Clare is a mentath, a brilliant logistician, a rare talent that is almost magical. Emma Bannon is magical, a powerful Sorceress Prime dedicated to serving Britannia and the queen. Together they hunt for the insane researcher who is trying to create a WMD by raising a plague that will not only destroy enemies, but devastate Britain as well.

The Red Plague is the second book in The Bannon and Clare Affairs, and it is an intriguing venture into a steampunk world. With the first book, The Iron Wyrm Affair, the world and the relationships between the several different important characters become established, and though it stands alone, I couldn’t wait to get into this one. Exciting, mysterious and compelling, Lilith Saintcrow has me looking forward to more.

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Anne

Tin Angel by Kat Martin and L.J. Martin (Read by Rebecca Cook)513Pr2zaLDL._SY346_

Listened to by Anne

Jessica Taggart leaves Boston for the Barbary Coast when her father leaves her a restaurant.  Problem is, when she arrives she finds a brothel in it’s place.  Jake Weston is the partner in this business and doesn’t need anyone meddling.  She’s looking for adventure, but headed for trouble and Jake is stuck trying to keep her safe.

This is an older book, but should not be missed and Rebbeca Cook does a fine job narrating.  The only book that Kat wrote with her husband, western writer L.J. Martin.  Set in the 1800s west, the brothel theme is glossed over by Jake being ultra protective of his “girls” and helping them get better lives if they want it.   Tin Angel is a delightful, charming romp  Maverick style.

Bottom Line:  Off to St. Louis to read with the grandkids since I’ve packed lots of books!

WW Ladies/Men Favorite Books of 2012

Barbara Vey -- December 31st, 2012

There are best of lists popping up all over.  Best books, best movies, best fashions and more than enough worst lists, but we won’t go there.  Rather than name “Best Books,” we’re going with the WW Ladies favorite reads of 2012.  Now this doesn’t mean the book had to be published in 2012, it just means it had to be read in 2012.  In their emails to me, many lamented the fact that they could pick just one and it was a very difficult decision.  Kym absolutely couldn’t make up her mind.  Regardless, here’s what I finally got out of them.

 

Heidi

Heidi

 

Heidi - Gnome on the Range, by Jennifer Zane

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SheilaSomebody to Love, by Kristan Higgins.

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joysann

joysann

 

joysann – This is too hard…  I don’t like to choose. There are just too many books I really enjoy a lot.  Print book: Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness

Audio book: I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella

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Susan

Susan

 

Susan - The Emperor’s Conspiracy by Michelle Diener
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Kym L

Kym 

Kym –  I can’t do it! I loved Trisha Ashley‘s newest, Chocolate Shoes and Wedding Blues, just as I love all of hers. Really liked Grace Burrowes‘s Lady Louisa’s Christmas Knight and was also thrilled to discover Rena Gregory’s short story in the Five Golden Rings anthology.

 

 

 

 

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Joan

 

Joan –  If You See Her by Shiloh Walker 

 

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Tammy

TammyFifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James, I loved the whole trilogy as one story.

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Michael

Michael

MichaelTimeless (The fifth book in the Alexia Tarabotti series) by Gail Carriger (audio book)

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Ashley

Ashley

AshleyOne Night Rodeo by  Lorelei James

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I have to agree that’s it’s almost impossible to pick a favorite book I read this year.  There were many that I enjoyed, but the two I talked about most to people were The Escape Diaries by Juliet Rosetti , a fun romp with an escaped but not guilty convict and Ready Player One by Ernest Cline, a futuristic adventure that I couldn’t put down.  Neither were all romance, but did have romantic elements.

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Please take a moment to tell me the best book you read in 2012.  It won’t be easy, but I do like to get recommendations, as do all my readers.

Bottom Line:  Remember to check back tomorrow for the link to my new website…it’s launch day!!

Weekly Giveaways

From Pam, Affaire de Coeur Magazine:  Blog Contest with Kat Martin.  Comment and your name will go into the drawing for an autographed copy of Against the Odds to one blog commenter.

WW Ladies Book Club Blurbs

Barbara Vey -- June 22nd, 2011

Summer has officially arrived and with it beach reads.  Personally, I could read any book at the beach.  There’s just something about having the sun warm your bones while you’re deep in an adventure and an ice cold lemonade quenching your thirst.  My mouth is watering just thinking about it.  Of course, I could do without the sand that seems to cling to every crevice of my body, but that’s a small price to pay for not having to shovel snow.  Here’s what the WW Ladies have been enjoying in the sun.

Kym A

Kym A

Awakening by JoAnn Durgin
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Read by Kym A
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Lexa Clarke joins a Team Work Mission for the summer.  She expects to travel to an exotic country, but instead is sent to San Antonio, TX to rebuild homes destroyed by a flood.  Lexa meets the team work mission director, Sam Lewis who challenges her to grow spiritually and emotionally. They have an immediate attraction, which brings out the best and worst in Lexa.  During the eight weeks, Sam and Lexa endure many challenges that cause them to question and grow in their faith, which also brings them closer as a couple.

This is a humorous, uplifting, and adventurous story.  Awakening is JoAnn Durgin’s first published novel, which I found to be an entertaining story with many surprising twists and turns.

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joysann

joysann

Spirit Dances by C E Murphy

Read by joysann

Since recognizing and accepting her shamanic powers, Seattle Detective Joanne Walker’s gifts for magic and healing have grown almost faster than she can learn to control them. In fact, watching an exquisite theater performance of Native American dance, Joanne discovers metaphysical changes in herself as magic swells around her. Something evil is hijacking the magic, however, and Joanne is drawn into searching for an extraordinary murderer.

I’ve been an enthusiastic fan of Joanne and her exploits for years, and The Walker Papers series just keeps getting better. This one I read cover to cover, enthralled, allowing no distractions (then read the last chapter over again). There’s mystery and suspense, humor and sorrow, discovery and excitement, and delight.

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Stacey

Stacey

Talk to Me by Cassandra Carr (E-book)

Read by Stacey

A young sports radio producer from Buffalo moves to Manhattan for her big break, a drive time sports talk show hosted by a former hockey player.  But from day one, explosive sexual tension wars with a strong professional camaraderie.  When  they take their relationship into the bedroom, will they learn there is more at stake than just sex, or will they loose the game of love before the opening face off?

Debut author Carr delivers a scorching erotic tale that captures the essence of Manhattan, Brooklyn and two people who have legitimate concerns about being in a relationship.  With her skillful pen, she draws them closer, past emotional pitfalls and well developed secondary characters, towards a love that I genuinely believe is happily ever after.
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Kym L

Kym L

My One and Only by Kristan Higgins (E-book)

Read by Kym L

Harper’s got her life just how she wants it. She’s ready to pop the question to long-term boyfriend Dennis when she is interrupted by a phone call from her flighty sister. It seems Willa is getting married — again — to the brother of Harper’s ex-husband Nick. Harper will have to postpone her own plans for matrimony in order to attend the wedding. There, despite the presence of Dennis, Harper and Nick realize they still love each other. To find a future together, they will have to confront the issues that drove them apart, issues both would rather ignore.

Although My One and Only departs somewhat from Higgins’ usual theme of finding love for the first time, it reads as delightfully as her other books. I was left satisfied by Nick and Harper’s tale and enjoyed the numerous other quirky characters as well.

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Heidi

Heidi

Slugfest: A Dirty Business Mystery by Rosemary Harris

Read by Heidi

Paula Holliday has left Connecticut to attend the Big Apple Flower Show in New York City. Her goal is to sell all of the merchandise in her booth, not to be involved in another murder mystery. But when mysterious circumstances keep happening to sabotage the show AND a security guard winds up dead, Paula can’t help but search for answers.

Even though this is the fourth in the series, Slugfest is a funny, quirky mystery all on it’s own. Not only did I fall in love with Paula, I loved JC Kaufman who is looking out for Paula during the flower show. That feisty woman could make any robber think again. With the whole story wrapped around gardening and a flower show, it’s a perfect summertime read!

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Stacey

Stacey

The Heir by Grace Burrowes

Read by Stacey

Dutiful, driven Gayle slowly and inescapably falls in love with his housekeeper.  But she has secrets and will not let herself see him as anything but her boss…despite the steadily growing attraction between them.  But as he continually demonstrates himself to be a true gentleman, she finds she is powerless to resist him.  Yet when her past intervenes, she finds herself hoping that circumstances will allow her to find true love with the heir.

It’s Grace Burrowes’ writing style and amazing characters that made this book such a joy to read.  It was quite easy to understand why Gayle’s entire family wanted to protect him, his emotional fragility and his desire to protect those around him from any sort of harm combine to create a wonderful central character and from that, a great story.

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Bottom Line: If a June night could talk, it would probably boast it invented romance.”  ~Bern Williams

WW Ladies Book Club Blurbs

Barbara Vey -- December 29th, 2010

Last night I was interviewed on Canned Laughter and Coffee, hosted by Renee Bernard.  It’s a podcast done live on Tuesday nights and the subject is “Women’s fiction and romance, happy endings and big laughs!”  It really was a lot of fun and the 15 minute format goes way too fast.  If you’d like to listen to it, you still can.  Just click here. Now, on to the WW Ladies Reads.

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joysann

joysann

Christmas Mourning by Margaret Maron

Read by joysann

The whole community is shocked and grieved by the death of another high school student in an auto accident, the third this school year. Judge Deborah Knott becomes involved in the investigation when it appears the cheerleader had been drugged at a party, and then a boy who claimed he was her boyfriend is murdered. The two don’t appear related, but Deborah and her husband, Sheriff’s Deputy Dwight Bryant find too many common clues for them to dismiss the connection.

Besides having a fascinating, mysterious plot, this Judge Deborah Knott story was all the more interesting with spending the holidays with the judge’s affectionate extended family. Over the years it’s been fun keeping tabs on all the siblings, in-laws, nieces and nephews, cousins and friends. With Christmas day approaching, it all comes together in way that I found heartwarming.

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Melissa

Melissa

The Taming of The Wolf by Lydia Dare

Read by Michelle

Lydia Dare completely redeems Dashiel Thorpe, Earl of Brimsworth, even though he starts off the book by once again blundering by biting the formidable witch Caitrin Macleod.  Having now marked Caitrin as his mate, he must convince her she wants to be with him forever…Only she’s convinced they’re NOT destined to be together.

What follows is a fun, heart squeezing, wonderful story that I couldn’t put down until I hit the last page!  It’s made of awesome!

Heidi

Heidi

Real Vampires Hate Their Thighs by Gerry Bartlett

Read by Heidi

Gloriana St. Clair is pretending to be engaged to hunk new vampire rock star Israel Caine. She is excited that Israel is up for a Grammy in a week, and wants to look her best on the red carpet. She meets Ian MacDonald who claims to have the secret to help vampires lose weight. Gloriana is ready to make the sacrifice to lose weight and keep it off, but at a price she is not sure she is willing to pay.

Glory is like every woman, vampire or not, wanting to change to look perfect. It made me think, how far would I be willing to go, to wear the perfect dress, the perfect shoes, the perfect jewelry, all for that one perfect night that will last in my memory forever. But would I put my health at risk for it?? Fantastic to ponder while reading this book.

Michelle

Michelle

Ghost Country by Patrick Lee

Read by Michelle

When their motorcade is attacked, Paige Campbell sends for the only person who can help her, Travis Chase.  Travis teams up with Bethany to save Paige and ultimately the world from a depressing end.  The weapon Bethany brings is called an Entity and it has the capability of transporting people to the exact same place 70 years into the future.  A future they want to avoid, but only have a couple of months to answer the right questions and stop the course of events.

A great read.  It challenged my imagination while leaving me to ponder the “what ifs.”

Loretta

Loretta

The Ark by Boyd Morrison

Read by Loretta

The main character of this novel, Dilara Kenner, an archeologist, receives information from a friend Sam Watson regarding her missing  father’s search for Noah’s Ark.  After he collapses and just before his death, Sam tells her to find Tyler Locke who can help her to reveal what happened.  When she finally finds and meets Tyler, she tries to convince him that recent attempts on her life were no accidents. Other searchers are a frightening threat.

They begin the search for Noah’s Ark, an unbelievable premise -  but Boyd Morrison makes it so real in this novel and constructs such an amazingly thrilling story, you almost want to sign on to find this 6000 year old boat.  Risking limb and life probably…..but it could almost be worth it!

Stacey

Stacey

All I Ever Wanted by Kristan Higgins

Read by Stacey

Callie Grey is at a crossroads.  The man she’s been in love with for ages (her boss) is dating someone else, her divorced parents are considering getting back together…and she’s not sure what to do.  Except of course, she keeps bumping into that pesky town vet…who’s smile might possibly make her melt.  Hopefully, she(and her dog) will figure out what she wants before she looses it all.

I adore the way Kristan Higgins allows readers to see into Callie’s head.  She’s hilarious, fallible and the sort of person you know you’ve been (or are) but are glad to watch from the sidelines as they make their way through their life.  It’s through her eyes you get to see the people (and pets) who make up her life…her world.  This is the reason I can’t get this book out of my head, and quite frankly, I don’t want to.

joysann

joysann

Tangled Reins by Stephanie Laurens

Listened to by joysann

From the moment he meets Miss Dorothea Darent, the Marquis of Hazelmere is fairly certain the London season with the ton will finally be interesting. Though at 22 she is considered a little old for “coming out”, the feisty, independent-thinking debutante is most popular, but everyone but she catches on to the fact she already belongs to Hazelmere.

Originally published in 1992, the audio book is a new release, bringing a classically happily-ever-after historical romance to audio listeners. The reader Rosalyn Landor is perfect with these regency period pieces, making the cast of aristocratic characters quite vivid. I found the story delightful, descriptive, and romantic.

Bottom Line: I’m trying to decide what I should put on my resolution list, but it usually ends up being the same thing every year…read more books.