March 23, 2016 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Counted With The Stars by Connilyn Cossette

Counted With The Stars
Author - Connilyn Cossett
Rating - 5 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend: Absolutely 

Back Cover...

Sold into slavery by her father and forsaken by the man she was supposed to marry, young Egyptian Kiya must serve a mistress who takes pleasure in her humiliation. When terrifying plagues strike Egypt, Kiya is in the middle of it all.

To save her older brother and escape the bonds of slavery, Kiya flees with the Hebrews during the Great Exodus. She finds herself utterly dependent on a fearsome God she's only just beginning to learn about, and in love with a man who despises her people. With everything she's ever known swept away, will Kiya turn back toward Egypt or surrender her life and her future to Yahweh?

What I Loved...

Counted With The Stars is a uniquely fresh and captivating tale woven from biblical events. Author Cossette did such an awesome job making the Exodus come to life in my head. The story of Moses and the Exodus has been done so many times that I have come to expect certain aspects to be portrayed as I have always seen them but Cossette completely blew me away with her creative spin on the plagues, the exodus itself and life as an Egyptian in those days as opposed to the Hebrew point of view.

In an odd way, everything was equally over the top and yet minimal. Cossette took the reader through the everyday life of Hebrew slavery without grandeur but painting the life so realistically. The mass exodus was written so vividly yet also seemed so realistic. 

What I Liked...

I really liked Kiya. She matured as the story progressed, giving the reader the opportunity to love her more and more. The secondary characters made an equal impact on me as the reader. I am excited to read the next in the series.

I have only read a few books with disabled or impaired characters. I can now add Counted With The Stars among them. I loved Kiya's brother, Jumo. He was a mix of nurturing and one who struggled. A very real character.


The cover is lovely although I didn't picture Kiya this way. I just can't help but picture Ancient Egyptians with bronzed skin.

I look forward to reading future works by Connilyn Cossette.

Disclaimer: This book was provided by Bethany House. The opinion of this book is my own and I was not paid or compensated for my review.

March 12, 2016 | By: Cynthia Marcano

Love's Violet Sunrise by Naomi Rawlings

Love's Violet Sunrise
Author - Naomi Rawlings
Rating - 4.5 out of 5 Stars
Would I Recommend: Yes

Back Cover...

With her brother facing trial for a murder he didn't commit, German immigrant Mabel Krause needs a lawyer who can help prove her brother's innocence. The only trouble is--she can't afford one.

Hiram Cummings needs money to return to law school, and the fastest way to earn it is by working as a legal clerk for the powerful and rich Rhett Vandergriff. When a desperate immigrant comes to him for help, he finds himself on a mission to prove a man's innocence, risking his job in the process.

But all is not as it appears, and Hiram soon learns that not only is his job at risk, but he's also in danger of losing his heart--if he and Mabel don't lose their lives first.

Love's Violet Sunrise is a prequel to the bestselling Eagle Harbor Series, as well as part of the American State Flower Collection.


I try to never read a series out of order. If a novella is published after a series but the plot takes place before the series, I feel cheated so I avoid them altogether.

However I am a Naomi Rawlings fan and I couldn't resist.

Love's Violet Sunrise's plot does take place before the Eagle Harbor Series, but I am so glad I read it! It is a wonderfully charming short story. I LOVE Hiram. I love Hiram so much I wish that the story was longer because I wanted to keep reading Hiram. He is intelligent, caring, heroic and determined. I usually prefer the flirts but I also love intellectual gentleman...that's Hiram!

Mabel was great too. She was a no-nonsense and equally devoted woman when she set her mind to something. I loved her spunk.

***Some Spoilers if you haven't read Eagle Harbor Series*****
Please put down whatever you doing and go read it immediately or skip this part.
This book was so bittersweet for me. As soon as I knew I was reading Hiram's story, I already knew he had a tragic end (in another book). I read it anyway and the more I fell in love with Hiram's character, the more my heart broke knowing his tragic death. Thanks Naomi! In a way, I am glad I read this after Eagle Harbor Series. I was prepared for the blow.
***End of Spoilers***

I definitely recommend this charming love story and I honestly can't decide whether to read this before or after the Eagle Harbor Series...I am literally baffled.

I did want to mention that I am not a fan of the cover. Naomi's Eagle Harbor Series has beautiful covers and so this one fell way short. Since its part of a different series, I logically understand the difference, but I don't have to like it. I am a book cover snob so this one is not my cup of tea.

It doesn't take away from the story...I promise.

Disclaimer: This book was provided by the author Naomi Rawlings. The opinion of this book is my own and I was not paid or compensated for my review.