My Review of Anne Hagan’s ‘Loving Blue in Red States – ‘Sweetwater Texas’

Good afternoon friends and welcome. Thank you for stopping by last week for my review for Domina Alexandra’s ‘I Belong With Her.’ It was a huge turnout. This week I am featuring my review for Anne Hagan’s ‘Loving Blue in Red States – Sweetwater Texas.’ This is a story you are going to fall in love with.

This story is about a master’s student / teacher, Emmie, who has a little son and lives with her mother in Texas. She is auditing a college class where she is writing her master’s thesis. She is family oriented, but is afraid of love and is blocking a past hurt that is affecting her now in the present. She tends to wear her insecurities on her sleeve.

I liked this protagonist and loved the interaction she had with her son. He is a sweet little boy. She has a kid side to her that I just adore.

Cass is a little bit on the feisty side and could have toned down her demeaner a bit. I really didn’t care for her in the beginning because she was brash and invasive.  As the story goes on, her character grew on me and I was able to see she really does have tender feelings. She is an excellent rancher and can rope a spooked horse and then calm him down. I thought that was another nice touch to the story.

The book is easy reading and can be read in about an hour and is perfect for an afternoon get-a-way. The dynamics between the two protagonists is priceless. It was a tug of war at time, but that is what made the story so fun. That is all I’m going to say so go get the book.
Book CoverHere is an excerpt to get you started.

#

Lucius looked around the nearly empty room. He noticed Cass lingering near her seat in the front. “Something I can help you with Miss?”

“Actually, I wanted a word with Ms. Warren.”

“I see.”

Lucius turned back to Emmie. “If you want to give me those forms, I can run them by the administration office tomorrow morning when I’m back here. They’re closed right now.”

Emmie leaned toward him. “I think that’s what she wants to talk about.” She tipped her head slightly toward Cass. “I can drop them off Thursday evening when I get here, if that’s all right?”

“I guess that’s fine. Don’t forget.”

“I won’t.”

“Ladies,” Lucius said, as he turned and stepped backwards to view them both. He tipped a couple of fingers to his head as he dipped it like he was doffing an imaginary cowboy hat.

Cass watched him leave before she approached. ”Sorry to hold you up.”

“No problem. How can I help you?”

“I think Professor Fox has taken quite a liking to you.”

“Pardon?”

“Don’t get offended. It’s just something I noticed, is all. I notice things. That’s my job.”

“Then you’ve missed quite a lot. The Professor is married and I’m…I’m not in the market for dates, flings or anything else of that sort.” If she only knew, Emmie thought.

“Whatever you say,” Cass said. “I didn’t come back here to argue with you.”

“Why did you come back here?”

Cass held up the release form, face out. “This. I need just a little bit more information before I become someone’s guinea pig.”

Emmie did her best to control her temper as she addressed the brash woman. “It’s not a requirement. You’re free to skip participating and just go on your way whenever I’m…well, whenever I’m doing the things I need to do with the class for my research.”

“Not very confident in yourself, are you, Emmie?” She said her name with added emphasis.

Emmie threw her hands up. “I thought you didn’t want to argue? Look, if that’s all, I really do need to get going. I have a little bit of a drive to get home and I have work to do yet this evening.”

“Abilene?” Cass asked, as Emmie gathered her things.

“Other direction. Other side of Sweetwater, here, out a little ways.”

 #

Five Stars

Purchase Loving Blue in Red States – Sweetwater Texas

Winter Hearts CoverThank you for stopping by today. I hope you enjoyed today’s book review. Anne has an announcement to make. She and twelve authors led by Amanda Radley aka A.E. Radley created a compilation of short romance holiday stories called ‘Winter Hearts.’All proceeds are going to two charities, Stonewall and the Trevor Project. You are going to want to read these stories as they will get you into the Christmas spirit. The collection is slotted to be released on November 16, 2018. Nothing beats a nice romance for this time of the year. You are going to fall in love with the authors. Come back next week when I’ll be presenting something new.

Until Next Time,

Lynn
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My Review for Amy Dunne’s ‘Season’s Meetings’

Good afternoon friends and welcome. Thank you so much for visiting last week. The blog meant a lot to me and thanks to all for liking it. This week I’m extending the holiday season with my book review for author Amy Dunne – ‘Season’s Meetings.’ As many of you know, Christmas is a favorite time of mine.

Season's Meetings cover“There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.”

~ Jane Austen

The players of the story are Catherine and Holly, who go on an unplanned adventure together at a mutual person’s home, who happens to be Catherine’s only friend, Beth.

Catherine is a workaholic and uses her job to cover up an old love pain. However, she does outreach work to heal emotional scars. At the same time she is uptight and needs a release so she can enjoy the beauty that life has to offer. Her vibe is standoffish and she can’t relax at all.

“I’m sorry, Cat.”

“For what?” Catherine asked. Her palms grew sweaty and she blotted them on her trousers.

“I’ve tried to be reasonable with you. I’ve given it my best shot, but you’re right. I can’t change your mind. You’ve left me no choice.” Beth sighed dramatically. “I’ve got to use my secret weapon. I’m sorry.”

Holly is young, energetic and is starting out on her own. She is Beth’s cousin and was invited for the festivities. She keeps her life simple and it works for her.

I found Holly to be delightful and playful. Never did I sense negative feelings from her. Even in the worst of times, she still manages to be optimistic. Her character touched me.

A twist comes into the play putting the two women into danger. This got both of them to rethink their priorities and realize what is really important.  I was chilled as I read along.

There is a lot of suspense that kept me on edge. Also there is plenty of good drama between several of the characters. Maybe even a catfight. I felt the hairs on my neck standing up during these scenes. The interactions between the players flowed flawlessly.

And of course, there is romance in the story, which was tender and loving. Both of the women were equally involved and made a nice steamy scene, that gave me excitement. They were descriptive, but not over the top. I felt the love between them and couldn’t wait to find out what was going to happen next.

This book is sweet and I enjoyed it. It kept me in the Holiday spirit. The author is clear with her descriptions and atmosphere. It took me about five and a half hours to read and I would recommend carving out an afternoon where you can do just that. You are going to love how this story unfolds.

After I read the book, I got a chance to listen to the audible version. It is very smooth and easy to get into. The narrator voiced all the characters, creating a robust and rich experience. You will be very pleased.

Five Stars

Season's Meetings cover

 

 

Excerpt 1

Catherine straightened her shirt with both hands. She disliked this part of her job but also happened to be rather good at it. “So, if we don’t dramatically increase our sales before the Christmas break, January’s going to be a bleak month. With the current economic situation I’m sure I don’t need to emphasise how difficult finding a new job is. If you want to still have a job in the New Year, you’ve got to sell more in the next two and a half weeks than you did for the whole of last month.”

Tom, a lanky man with thinning blond hair, raised his hand. Catherine nodded curtly, giving him permission to speak.

“Isn’t that basically a threat, Catherine?”

Catherine folded her arms and regarded him coolly. “No, Tom. It’s an honest prediction of what’s likely to happen. I’m not here to be nice, to be liked, or to tell you comforting little lies. I’m here to get results.”

“But it’s so close to Christmas,” Alice said in an infuriatingly nasally whiney tone. She was plump with grey hair and a bright red nose from her incessant nose blowing. Large novelty Christmas tree earrings hung from both earlobes. “What you’re asking is practically impossible.”

“What I’m asking is difficult, but not impossible,” Catherine said. Exasperated by the attitude and glares she was receiving, she tried to boost their morale. “If we follow the strategies and give our all, we can achieve our targets. We’ve a distinct advantage. While all the other departments and sale companies dramatically slow down and take their eye off the prize in the lead-up to Christmas, we can reap the benefits. Unfortunately, there are going to be some restrictions. From this moment on, no more annual leave requested before Christmas will be authorised—”.

Excerpt 2

“Glad you see sense.” Catherine pulled out a chair from under the table. “I have another surprise.” 

“You do?” 

“Yes. I need you to sit down here, plug these earphones in, and close your eyes.” 

Holly looked confused but sat as requested. Catherine removed Holly’s plate to one side. When Catherine handed her the earphones, she hesitated and searched Catherine’s face. 

“Do you trust me?” Catherine asked, her heart beating a little bit faster. 

“Totally,” Holly said. She plugged her ears and clenched her eyes shut. 

Catherine quickly set up her tablet. The screen flashed, and when faces appeared she plugged the earphones in. 

Holly physically jumped from the sound. Her eyes flew open and she stared at the screen in disbelief. After three quick blinks, her hands shot to her mouth, and she let out a gasp. 

Catherine’s work was done for the time being, so she stepped away from the table. She watched Holly closely, storing everything to memory, especially the expressions and the few stray tears of what she hoped indicated joy. 

“Mum? Dad? Shit! How’s this even possible?” Holly asked. Listening to an answer Catherine  couldn’t hear, Holly nodded at the screen, and then looked over to her. Swallowing and clutching her chest, she mouthed the words, “thank you.” 

Catherine shot her a wink and left the kitchen, patting her thigh for Kimmy to follow her into the bedroom. Her plan for at least the next thirty minutes was to take Kimmy for a walk so Holly could have some privacy while talking with her family in Canada.

Purchase ‘Season’s Meetings’

I want to give you all a special thanks for joining us today. Also I’d like to send a thank you to Amy Dunne for creating this wonderful book. Stay tuned for next week when I’ll be featuring Artist, Jen Chef.

Until next time,

Lynn

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