July 30, 2014 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Reiew: Paper Roses by Amanda Cabot

Paper Roses
Author - Amanda Cabot
Time It Took for to Read - 1 Week
Rating - 4 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend to My Students & Friends: Maybe
The future stretches out in front of Sarah Dobbs like the pure blue Texas sky. Leaving Philadelphia, mail-order bride Sarah arrives in San Antonio ready to greet her groom - a man she has never met but whose letters have won her heart from afar. But there is one problem - he had died. And Sarah can't go back East.

What I Loved...

Nothing really.

What I Liked...

In general I liked the book. There was a mix of romance, suspense, drama and Christianity weaved throughout. There was nothing stereotypical about the heroine Sarah Cobbs or the hero Clay Canfield. They are flawed characters in need of Jesus and the book isn't afraid to showcase it. The book had me guessing until the end. Clever writing.


For those who read my reviews often, you know I am a stickler for 2 things in the books I CHOOSE to read. Swoon and.....comedy! Paper Roses had a bit of swoon and no comedy. I am not asking for a stand up show, just a little laugh here and there. I was disappointed in that aspect, but overall I still enjoyed in the book.

I found this book on Amazon for FREE! Woohoo! I would read the other books in the Texas Dream series if I could get those for free too...lol. 

July 18, 2014 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Review: A Harvest of Rubies

A Harvest of Rubies
Author - Tessa Afshar
Time It Took for to Read - 1 Day
Rating - 5 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend to My Students & Friends:Yes!
The prophet Nehemiah has a cousin who can speak several languages, keep complex accounts, write on rolls of parchment and tablets of clay, and solve mysteries. This cousin is catapulted into the center of the Persian court—working long hours, rubbing elbows with royalty, and completing high-level tasks as a scribe for the queen. Not bad, for a woman living in a man's world.

What I Loved...

Everything...that is bold I know. However at this moment I can't think of anything I didn't like! The writing is wonderful. The characters draw you in. I felt like I knew them personally. I got lost in the story. It's everything a Christian Fiction should be. I found myself referencing the bible and seeing it in a different way, almost like I was looking for the buried treasure in the bible. For me, she didn't replace the biblical account, she enhanced it.

The cover is absolutely stunning and even my newborn would stare at it as I read it (sometimes aloud to her).

I do not wish to reference any parts of the book because I feel like I would be robbing you of the experience of reading it.

Oh and I absolutely love Darius...swoon!

What I Liked...

I liked nothing because I loved it all.


If I could give this book 10 stars I would! I absolutely love this book from beginning to end. Author Tessa Afshar is such a gifted writer. Having read In The Field of Grace (click to read my review) and loving it, I wasn't sure what to expect. I was not disappointed. She is not a one hit wonder. Albeit, I am actually reading her books from most recent and going backwards, although not intentionally, I find that her storytelling is still pure gold.

I knew this to be a 2 part book and I was so in love with this book from the very beginning that half way through reading it, I ordered the second book in the series Harvest of Gold.

Let me say this...I am a devout Christian and while I do not need to read Christian Fiction to become engrossed in the bible, I applaud Tessa Afshar for helping me find hidden treasure in it that I would not have been able to see on my own.

July 11, 2014 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Review: A Match of Wits by Jen Turano

A Match of Wits
Author - Jen Turano
Time It Took for to Read - 3 Days
Rating - 4.5 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend: Yes
After his departure from New York two years ago to meet up with his almost-fiancee, Zayne Beckett is the last person Agatha Watson wanted to stumble upon in her travels as a reporter with the New York Tribune. Quite pathetically bedraggled, he clearly needs to be taken in hand and sent back East to his family. Although she no longer has feelings for him, Agatha realizes--by hook or by crook--she'll have to be the one to get the obstinate man home.

Everyone else may think them a match, but nothing could be further from the truth--until Agatha finds herself in real trouble. Have these two stubborn, too-smart-for-their-own-good people been meant for each other all along?

What I Loved...

I am a fan of Jen Turano and A Match of Wits did not disappoint. The whole gang from her previous books are incorporated in the book and I just loved it. It felt familiar and brought back memories of previous plots.

Jen Turano's female characters are hilarious and I found myself laughing out loud quite a bit.

What I Liked...

For those that don't know me, I am a bit obsessed with swoon  and humor in the novels that I read. While A Match of Wits did have lots of humor, it didn't have as much swoon as I like, BUT in this case it's not a bad thing. The lack of fit the storyline perfectly well and I am surprised myself how much I liked the book without one of my major ingredients for loving a book.


Who said you shouldn't judge a book by its cover? I admit that I do judge a book by its cover...literally a book. Jen Turano's cover's are unmistakeable. However once I begin reading, I don't ever picture the woman on the cover . I guess since the characters have appeared in previous books, I already have a picture in my head of what they look like. I found myself constantly  looking at the cover and just couldn't make the image on the cover stick. I guess its not a big deal but I thought I'd mention it.