The House on Harbor Hill

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This is a very moving novel revolving around spousal abuse and the affects it has on two women years apart in age but close in their horrifying experiences. The harshness, brutality and fear of Delilah Buford and Tracey Walters are hard to read yet alone picture and written in such a manner that portrays their reality and that the reader can comprehend the brutality as it happened or occurs.

Delilah has made her home, Harbor Hill, a sanctuary for women needing security and a chance to rebuild their lives. Delilah tends to one woman at a time, offering her support, kindness and understanding along with room and board at no cost. Tracey is a woman hiding out from her abusive husband, always on the run when he finds her.

The beauty of the novel is the relationships formed by Delilah, Tracey, Tracey’s two small children and Aiden. Aiden lived at Harbor Hill when he was a young boy and returned as an adult when his world imploded. They all find something that they need in each other: healing, comfort, acceptance, and love.

The Shortest Way Home

Shortest

The Shortest Way Home is a charming and pleasurable novel about a young woman who finds herself in a position to completely deter from her after graduate school plans. On a last trip before moving to New York, Hannah and her boyfriend, Ethan, go on a wine tasting trip to Sonoma, CA and while in Sonoma, she is entranced by the Bellosguardo winery-a small but lovely venue struggling to compete with the mass producing vineyards of the area. Hannah is charmed by the son of the owners and as she listens to him talk about the winery and changes that could be mad, she pictures herself as someone who could do just that. Leaving Ethan to continue to New York, Hannah becomes involved in the winery as a marketer, learning from the wife of the owner. There is more going on between them than Hannah first noticed and as she grows into her position, she also grows wrapped up in the stresses and decisions of them and in their personal relationship. All the while, she has been smitten by William, the owner’s son, and he with her. Unfortunately, he is leaving to go to grad school at NYU in a week.

Hannah gives it her all, facing the ups and downs of the owner’s relationship and the business of infusing the winery with life and recognition.

This I know

this I know

If you see this book at a bookstore, at a library, on Kindle or other sites, do not pass it by! It is a lovely, heart-touching, endearing, heart strings pulling novel about a young girl growing up while trying to fit into her family. She is often rejected or misunderstood. Grace has a gift of Knowing or clairvoyance that her pastor father cannot abide, her sisters poke fun at and others turn away from in fear. Grace is trying her best to deny her gift but it will not allow her to do this.

Along the way growing up, her gift brings her both joy and sadness. She experiences thing her gift does but cannot share them for fear of rejection by her father. He is entrenched in church thought that she is devil filled, even though she repeated states she is driven by God and by what is right, not evil.

My heart broke so many times as I read her deep struggles and hurts. Above it all, she’s a survivor

The Cottages on Silver Beach

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I thoroughly enjoyed this novel of romance curried with serious roadblocks created by circumstances that are unresolved. Both Eliot Bailey and Megan Hamilton are strong characters, each wanting the other but stymied by a past event that overshadows her life and creates a heretofore unsolvable puzzle for him. In their desire to be together, the puzzle (where her brother’s wife disappeared to) has to be resolved in order for Eliot and Megan to move forward. The wall it creates between them is impenetrable without this resolution.

Bride for Keeps

bride keeps

This is not your usual romance. Bride for Keeps digs deep into a relationship under duress and on the bath to dissolution. The characters of Sierra and Carter are very well developed and consistently true to the series of emotions they feel and try to cope with, evaluate and improve. You can literally feel their confusion, fear, sorrows and doubts as they work to restore a broken relationship, a faltering marriage.

One Way or Another

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This is another book that I adored because it was lively and upbeat. I fell in love with Katie and Ben and wanted the very best for both of them. Unfortunately, because they are vying for a grand chef position at a new, posh restaurant, only one could ultimately be the victor. Reading about how Katie and Ben loved each other yet parted to pursue careers wove a thread through the competition and through the grueling tests of their abilities as chefs.

I thoroughly enjoyed One Way or Another and look forward to other books by Ms. Coleman.

Front Porch Lemonade

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This is a cute idea of telling the ongoing daily stories of women who are friends and who meet often on the front porch of one of them. Stories of daily life abound with down home Southern flair-some funny, some serious and all of them interesting to the women friends.

This was not a favorite read of mine and I found it to be rather boring at times. A series of unrelated events and just the happenings of the ladies might be your cup of tea.

 

Carousel Beach

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Oh, my! I loved this book and could not leave it alone. The writing alone is superb and it is combined with the heart touching story of a young woman trying to come to terms with two horrible and utterly sad events. One can just feel the heaviness of  heart of Maya as she struggles daily to recapture a lost sense of wholeness and find a way back to the person she was. All along her troubled journey is her devoted husband, Vale, who tries his best to bring her back to the love, closeness and uniqueness that defined them. The true savior in the story is Hank, creator of the carousel that Maya is restoring. His connection to Maya and their conversations about the carousel and about Maya’s deceased grandmother reach the places in Maya that were closed off, effectively shutting her off from life and family.

This is an absolutely beautiful book.

Island Life Sentence

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If unfortunate events can be funny, they are in this book. The series of crazy experiences that Peg Savage has when she and husband, Clark, move to Key West are the funniest but not to her. Of course, her husband departs for a consulting job in Cuba almost as soon as they arrive in Key West leaving Peg to fend for herself and her dog. Peg has everything happen to her, compounding her lack of desire to even be there: stranded with over forty-two bridges to cross to get to the mainland. Not an awful distance to travel but interminable if, like Peg, you have an abject fear of bridges. Peg does meet some friendly people (and haints/ghosts) that help make life more bearable until Clark returns.

Annie’s Summer by the Sea

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I thoroughly enjoyed this lovely book because of the engaging characters, entertaining story and the mix of predicaments.

Annie Trebarwith has inherited her family’s ancient, in desperate need of repair house in Cornwall. Her boyfriend, Josh Pasco, supports her in every way but a pushy cousin and a series of unfortunate e vents may cause Anne to sell the home to her cousin. The lovely town residents flock to her side, warming her heart eve more for them and for her new home. However, the huge debt for fixing the house may be more than Annie can bear.