Gone Without a Trace by Patricia Bradley – Book Review

The past is repeating itself–and time is running out.

It’s been more than two years since homicide detective Livy Reynolds’s cousin disappeared from Logan Point. Unlike most people in her hometown, Livy has never believed that Robyn left voluntarily. When Dallas private investigator Alex Jennings contacts her concerning a senator’s missing granddaughter who was last seen in Logan Point, Livy notices eerie similarities between the two disappearances. With self-doubt plaguing her and an almost instant dislike of the self-assured PI, she’s finding this investigation an uphill battle. But with the prospect of finding her cousin on the horizon, she’ll have to find a way to work with Alex–before it’s too late.


I enjoyed the other two books in the series, although there were things that I was a little disappointed with, in both of them. This one I was more disappointed with. I would have liked a little more development in the characters. There was an issue that Alex had that I felt was never really resolved, or at least we didn’t see the development of it. By the end of the book, it was just resolved without us getting a glimpse of how. I also didn’t think the romance was that believable. It never developed out of anything; it was just there. It would have been nice to see a little more of the development.

I did, however, like that I didn’t know which character was the abductor until the end when the characters found out. It kept me guessing and drew me into the suspense. This was a decent romantic suspense novel, but it could have benefited from a lot more description and development.

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Change in the Making

I am considering a change with my blogs. Right now, there is really no focus on this blog. Initially, this blog was created to promote my writing, but that has taken a back seat and I’m not sure if I’ll continue writing books or not.

The change that may be coming will be splitting my blog into two different ones. I will have one for book reviews and other things related to books and writing. The other one, will be focusing on mental health.

Mental health issues are something that is very close to my heart because of family and personal experiences.

This change may take a while to be implemented because I want to plan it out a little more and decide how I’ll do it exactly.

I’ll keep you up to date on the changes.

A Worthy Pursuit by Karen Witemeyer – Book Review

Stone Hammond is the best tracker in Texas. He never comes home empty-handed. So when a wealthy railroad investor hires him to find his abducted granddaughter, Stone eagerly accepts.

Charlotte Atherton, former headmistress of Sullivan’s Academy for Exceptional Youths, will do anything to keep her charges safe, especially the little girl entrusted to her care after her mother’s death. Charlotte promised Lily’s mother she’d keep the girl away from her unscrupulous grandfather, and nothing will stop Charlotte from fulfilling that pledge. Not even the handsome bounty hunter with surprisingly honest eyes who comes looking for them.

When the teacher he’s after produces documentation that shows she’s the little girl’s legal guardian, Stone must reevaluate everything he’s been led to believe. Is Miss Atherton villain or victim? She acts more like a loving mother than an abductress, and the children in her care clearly adore her.

Then a new danger threatens, and Charlotte is forced to trust the man sent to destroy her. Stone becomes determined to protect what he once sought to tear apart. Besides, he’s ready to start a new pursuit: winning Charlotte’s heart.


I got into this book right away. Karen Witemeyer’s writing style always draws me into the story and makes me care about the characters. Charlotte and Stone were relatable and I emphasized with them, even though I haven’t experienced a lot of what they experienced. For me, the setting wasn’t a huge part, and there wasn’t anything all that special about it, but I don’t read for the setting so for me that was okay. This book was a delightful blend of historical romance with a splash of suspense.

Love’s Rescue by Christine Johnson – Book Review

Can a girl enamored with the adventurous seas ever be content with the tame life of a Southern belle?

When her mother dies, Elizabeth Benjamin heads home to Key West, determined to transform herself into the perfect Southern belle her parents always wished her to be. But nothing goes according to plan. Her brother resents her, the servants do not obey her, and Rourke O’Malley, the dashing man she vowed to forget, refuses to relinquish his hold on her heart. Worst of all, it becomes painfully obvious that her father is not the man he appears to be.

As family secrets come to light, Elizabeth is faced with a difficult choice: to perform her duty and abandon her dreams, or to leave her life of privilege behind to chase the man her father sees as little better than a pirate.

From the first emotional page, author Christine Johnson throws you into a world of impossible choices, hidden desires, and heart-melting romance in the steamy South.


One thing that really annoyed me about this book was that I couldn’t figure out how old Rourke is. It was never mentioned how old he was at any point in the book so I couldn’t figure out if he was less than or more than ten years older than Elizabeth. It was only a minor detail but one that annoyed me. I also found the ending to be a rather quick turnaround without much to imply the change in character.

Despite these annoyances, I enjoyed the novel and wondered how Rourke and Elizabeth’s story would play out. I could relate to Elizabeth’s desire to please her father, although the time period is much different than the one I live in today.

Untangled by Carey Scott – Book Review

Think you’ll never measure up? Think again.

We all want to feel valued. We crave approval and acceptance in the eyes of family, friends, and even strangers. But when we seek confirmation that we are enough using the world’s standards, it seems like we always fall short. As a result, we cannot believe we are who God says we are–accepted, loved, beautiful, and treasured.

With hope-filled writing and plenty of hard-won personal advice, Carey Scott teaches you how to untangle your self-esteem from the world and anchor it in Jesus. She lovingly shows you that God was intentional in how he made you–and that he is pleased with his work. You’ll learn practical strategies to escape the unattainable standards of our performance-based world. And you’ll find comfort in the fact that you are not alone on the journey.


I received this book as an advanced copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I gave this book only three out of five stars because I didn’t relate to almost half of the book. Several chapters were specifically for married women with children, which I am not. Despite that, I could relate to a lot of the rest of the book and enjoyed hearing the stories of how other people struggle with the same things I do.

No Place to Hide – Book Review

She’ll defend her friend until the bitter end–but is she in over her head?

It’s not every day you see your childhood friend and onetime crush on national news. Jackie Sellers just wishes it were under different circumstances. She can’t believe that Ian Lockwood is wanted in connection with a terrorist plot, and she’s determined to find him and help him clear his name. Unfortunately, she’s not the only one looking for him. The FBI wants him captured. The bad guys want him dead. Ian just wants to stay alive long enough to prove his innocence and prevent a catastrophe.


I love Lynette Eason’s books and this one was no different. The intricate suspense plot drew me in and got me wondering if things like this actually happen in real life. I kept wondering what would happen to Ian and Jackie and who would get to them first. I found the romance lacking until the end, but I was okay with that. It made it seem a little more realistic to me and what little romance there was didn’t take away from the fact that Ian and Jackie were running for their lives. I found the spiritual element to be beautifully interwoven with the suspense. I also liked getting the different points of view throughout the book, as it gave more depth to the plot.

Do you feel “phine”?

This coming week (May 4-10), the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is hosting their annual mental health week. Their theme for this year’s mental health week is the mental health of men and boys. It is something that is sorely lacking. Men are less likely to talk about their mental health, but it affects them just as much as it does women.

Mental health issues do not care what gender you are, what skin color you have, how affluent you are, etc. If you have mental capabilities, you need to take care of your mental health, just as much as you need to take care of your physical health.

Below I’ve included resources from the CMHA website, specifically created for the mental health week, which also includes a fact sheet related to mental health of men and boys. On the CMHA website, many other resources can be found for taking care of your mental health.

Fine or PhineOne phrase they have used to try to bring awareness to mental health is the question: How do you really feel? Fine or phine? They define “phine” as saying you’re fine when you are not.

I’m sure I’m not the only one when I say that many times I’m “phine.” My standard responses to the questions like “How are you doing?” are “fine”, “good”, “fairly well”, and the occasional “ok”. I could have the worst day possible and I would still give you one of those answers. If you’re close enough to me, I might give you a different response but it would be really rare. Even after my brother died last August when people would ask me the question, I would usually say “ok” or “it depends on the day (or time of day).” I still wouldn’t give people a completely honest answer.

Over the past several weeks, I’ve gotten really discouraged at times and could feel myself slipping down the rabbit hole that was affecting my mental health negatively. I had to consciously change my thought path because I knew if I didn’t, it would get harder to get out of the negative cycle and my mental health would take a nose dive.

Today, during church, was one of those times. One thing that occurred at the beginning of the service that started me on the bad thought path was someone made the comment “Don’t be shy.” As if shyness is something that someone can turn off. As someone who has an acute social anxiety disorder, it kind of offended me.

Shyness is something that a lot of people don’t understand and my family’s comments after church when I brought it up reiterated this. They thought shyness was when you’re quiet and don’t talk to people but it’s a lot more than that.

Merriam-Webster defines “shy” as:

  • feeling nervous and uncomfortable about meeting and talking to people
  • showing that you are nervous and uncomfortable about meeting and talking to people
  • tending to avoid something because of nervousness, fear, dislike, etc.

People don’t understand issues that relate to our mental health and we need to better educate ourselves and others because mental health affects everyone. Talking about mental health is not an option. It is a necessity.


CMHA’s Mental Health Week Resources