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First Line Friday — The Drive

12 Aug

Happy Friday! My husband loves a Western, be it a film or novel. So when I saw that Murray Pura and Patrick E. Craig had a new series, I just had to get him book 1, The Drive. The Storm Riders series promises to have all the thing my husband likes, and I’m anxious to hear what he thinks. If you or someone you love are a fan of the Western genre, then check it out!

Here’s the first line:

Carson Budrow sat low in the saddle, his slicker doing little to ward off the chill wind and light drops of rain.

Out of the smoke and fire of the Civil War, an unlikely friendship is forged. Two men emerge from the war’s ashes, cross paths, and decide to ride together, even though Carson Budrow wore Union blue and Garrett Roads Confederate gray. They form a cautious partnership and hook up with a cattle drive heading from Texas to Colorado. Fierce twisters, deep rivers, heartless desperadoes, bold Comanche with faces painted for war, and gun-toting, strong women will be on this drive. Worst of all is the gang tracking them and gunning for Budrow’s life, something not even his partner Roads or the two women in Budrow’s life think they can do anything to stop.

First Line Friday — The Premonition at Withers Farm

5 Aug

Happy Friday! Today I am featuring one of the newest novels on my NetGalley shelf, The Premonition at Withers Farm. This new dual-time, mystery/suspense from Jaime Jo Wright is just the thing for those who like a shiver-y good read. It’s not out yet, but you can pre-order HERE.

Now for a sneak peek at the first line:

When death came to visit, no one ever prepared tea and cookies.

The voices of the past cannot stay silent forever.

In 1910 Michigan, Perliett Van Hilton is a self-proclaimed rural healer, leaving the local doctor convinced she practices quackery. It doesn’t help that her mother is a spiritualist who regularly offers her services to connect the living with their dearly departed. But when Perliett is targeted by a superstitious killer, she must rely on both the local doctor and an intriguing newcomer for assistance.

In the present day, Molly Wasziak’s life has not gone the way she dreamed. Facing depression after several miscarriages, Molly is adapting to her husband’s purchase of a peculiar old farm. A search for a family tree pulls Molly deep into a century-old murder case and a web of deception, all made more mysterious by the disturbing shadows and sounds inside the farmhouse.

Perliett fights for her life, and Molly seeks renewed purpose for hers as she uncovers the records of the dead. Will their voices be heard, or will time forever silence their truths?

Daphne du Maurier and Christy Award-Winning author, Jaime Jo Wright resides in the hills of Wisconsin writing suspenseful, mysteries stained with history’s secrets. Jaime lives in dreamland, exists in reality, and invites you to join her adventures at jaimewrightbooks.com!

First Line Friday — Bookshop By The Sea

29 Jul

Happy Friday! Today I am heading to the my mountain cottage for a little cleaning and some R&R — reading and relaxation! I am taking Bookshop by The Sea by Denise Hunter with me. It is this month’s book club pick. The beach-y setting is different from my woodsy mountain views, but I am sure I will get swept up in the story!

Here’s the first line:

Eleven months had not been long enough to prepare Sophie Lawson for the sight of him.

Sophie Lawson should be enjoying her sister’s wedding day. But nothing could have prepared her to see the best man again.

After her mother became bedridden and her father bailed on the family, Sophie found herself serving as a second mother to her twin brother, Seth, and younger sister, Jenna. Sophie supported her siblings through their college years, putting aside her own dream of opening a bookshop in Piper’s Cove—the quaint North Carolina beach town they frequented as children.

Now it’s finally time for Sophie to follow her own pursuits. Seth has a new job, and Jenna is set to marry her college beau in Piper’s Cove. But the destination wedding reunites Sophie with best man Aiden Maddox, her high school sweetheart who left her without a backward glance.

When an advancing hurricane strands Aiden in Piper’s Cove after the wedding, he finds the hotels booked to capacity and has to ask Sophie to put him up until the storm passes. As the two ride out the weather, old feelings rise to the surface. The delay also leaves Sophie with mere days to get her bookshop up and running. Can she trust Aiden to stick around? And will he find the courage to risk his heart?

First Line Friday — A Sacred Duty

22 Jul

Happy Friday! A Sacred Duty is the sequel to mystery novel A Noble Calling by Rhona Weaver. I finished Noble Calling right before our trip to Yellowstone last year. It really did capture the national park well. I’m looking forward to the return trip! If you are looking for a great mystery check both out!

Here’s the first line:

The bones were stark white . . . .

Rookie FBI Special Agent Win Tyler should be resting on his laurels after emerging from the False Prophet case a hero. Instead, he finds himself surrounded by mystery and danger after a woman’s severed hand emerges from a toxic thermal pool at a local geyser. Win soon discovers that there are other women missing from the park. Are these disappearances murders or simply unfortunate accidents?

Evidence suggests the skeletal remains belong to a missing Russian scientist, and Win’s quest to find answers takes him to Kamchatka, Russia, where he’s forced to take on an espionage role he’s not trained to perform. Who can he trust as he navigates an increasingly murky area between good and evil? Are more lives still at risk? Will the search for the lost strengthen his faith as he strives to bring closure and peace not only to the families of the missing but also to his own soul?

A Sacred Duty, award-winning author Rhona Weaver’s second installment in the FBI Yellowstone Adventure series, follows Win into a maelstrom of deceit and violence involving a Russian intelligence officer, a mole within the Bureau, and a serial killer. Set against the stunning landscape of Yellowstone National Park and the wilds of Far Eastern Russia, this exciting novel is both a fast-paced thriller and a heartfelt story of loss, trust, and grace.

First Line Friday — To Love A Viking

15 Jul

I am a big fan of Heather Day Gilbert. You may know her from her mystery series. But did you know she writes Viking novels! Oh, yes! Her newest novel co-written with Jen Cudmore is To Love A Viking. It’s book 1 in the Tavland Vikings series — more great tales to come! I’ve always been fascinated by the early history of Europe and had to order this book. Check out all the details below.

Here’s the first line:

The Vikings had returned.

Get swept up in an enthralling new romance series featuring women who rule the hearts of Viking men.

ELLISIF
Forced into a financially advantageous marriage that spirals into a nightmare, Ellisif cannot help but imagine what might have been and ache for what was lost. The only lights in her life are her daughters and the friendships she’s forged with the household servants.

Though seven years have passed since Ellisif wed another man, Dagar still cannot forget the woman who captured his youthful heart. As the Viking warrior battles for his country’s future, he finds himself entangled in a personal war for Ellisif’s freedom that could cost his family their reputation and standing with the king. If he risks all, can he save the woman whose face still haunts his dreams? And if given another chance, will she choose him?

INARA
Escaped slave Inara is determined to start a new life. Under the guidance of warrior and shipbuilder Håkon, her sword skill grows, as does her confidence that the Viking men will accept her as a warrior in her own right. 

When she is selected to lead a perilous rescue mission to protect Ellisif, Inara finds herself blindsided by feelings for Håkon…and by threats to her freedom far closer than she feared. As dreams and desires collide, she wrestles against the lies holding her captive. Can she conquer her doubts before all that she’s hoped for slips from her hands?

Written by award-winning historical author Heather Day Gilbert and fresh voice Jen Cudmore, two love stories entwine in this sweeping Viking-era romance, the first novel in the Tavland Vikings series.

Award-winning novelist Heather Day Gilbert enjoys writing mysteries and Viking historicals. She brings authentic family relationships to the page, and she particularly delights in heroines who take a stand to protect those they love. Avid readers say Heather’s realistic characters–no matter what century–feel like best friends. When she’s not plotting stories, this native West Virginian can often be found hanging out with her husband and four children, playing video games, or reading Agatha Christie novels.

Find all her books and her newsletter signup at heatherdaygilbert.com.

Jen Cudmore‘s favorite type of book is a historical. Throw in a clean, sweet romance and she won’t put it down until she reaches the last page! Currently she is working full-time as a manager for a small medical clinic, and has enjoyed collaborating on this new Viking saga. Jen published a couple western novels and some short stories several years ago, and has blogged for various sites for over a decade. Working on this current project has been a good distraction from her recent empty nest. With her son serving in the Navy and her daughter off to college, Jen is seeking new adventures!

First Line Friday — Elysium Tide

8 Jul

Happy Friday! Today I am featuring Elysium Tide, a new novel by James R. Hannibal, an author that has become a must-read for me. High octane suspense is his forte, and I look forward to going on another twisting, turning ride! With its Hawaiian setting, I’m thinking this is a good beach/pool bag addition.

Here’s the first line:

Dr. Peter Chesterfield watched his chief resident cut a three-millimeter patch of flesh and muscle away from the boy’s forehead above the eyebrow.

Dr. Peter Chesterfield is one of the Royal London Hospital’s top neurosurgeons. He is also a workaholic, ordered by his boss to take a week off to attend a medical symposium at the luxurious Elysium Grand on the island of Maui. While there, Peter pulls a woman with a skull fracture from the water. Though he is able to revive her in the ambulance, she eventually dies in his arms, leaving him with only one clue to what happened to her: the word “honu.”

Increasingly obsessed with discovering the cause of his patient’s death, Peter becomes entangled in an ongoing investigation of a brazen luxury auto theft. He also becomes a source of deep irritation to detective Lisa Kealoha, who has jurisdiction over the case.
But when the two join forces, they begin to uncover a destructive plot that runs far deeper than either of them could have imagined. And if they’re not careful, they’re both going to end up dead.

Award-winning author James R. Hannibal whisks you away to the deadly beauty of Hawaii for a story of greed, violence, and justice that will leave you breathless.

First Line Friday — Critical Alliance

1 Jul

Happy Friday! Elizabeth Goddard is one of my go-to, must-read romantic suspense authors. I am excited that her newest novel, Critical Alliance, book 3 in the Rocky Mountain Courage series, will be released in just a few days. (You can pre-order HERE.) It is definitely headed to the top of my Summer TBR pile!

Here’s the first line:

Her world was spinning out of control.

Mackenzie Hanson’s special set of skills opened the door to a successful career as a professor of cybersecurity at a Michigan university, allowing her to put her criminal past behind her. But when a long-ago partner in crime delivers a cryptic message about her father’s tech company being under cyberattack, she heads for Montana to secure exposed assets, close security breaches, and hopefully save lives.

Diplomatic Security Services special agent Alex Knight is back home in Montana to decompress from a mission gone wrong. But even as he’s trying to relax, he’s drawn into another mystery, complete with suspicious deaths, lethal threats, and whispers of espionage that all have one thing in common–a beautiful cybersecurity expert with a dark past.

When the situation turns deadly, Alex and Mackenzie will have to work together to find the answers they need–before someone silences Mackenzie for good.

USA Today bestselling author Elizabeth Goddard weaves a tangled web of nail-biting suspense and heart-stopping romance in this fast-paced conclusion to her Rocky Mountain Courage series.

First Line Friday — The Deadly Shallows

24 Jun

Happy Friday! I just finished an early copy of The Deadly Shallows by Dani Pettrey and I just had to share! This breath-holding romantic suspense will be a great addition to your beach bag. It releases on July 5 — you can pre-order now.

Here’s the first line:

Crisp night air slapped his cheeks, but he’d long since learned to endure the elements.

A deadly attack.
A stolen weapon capable of immense destruction.
A painful secret that threatens to tear two hearts apart.

CGIS Agent Noah Rowley is rocked to the core when several of his valued team members come under fire on his Coast Guard base. He and his remaining team race to the scene and end the attack, but not before innocent lives are lost. Furious and grief-stricken, he vows to do whatever is needed to bring the mastermind behind the attack to justice.

Stunned by the ambush, Coast Guard flight medic Brooke Kesler evacuates in a helicopter carrying the only surviving gunman. The gravely wounded man whispers mysterious information to Brooke that immediately paints a target on her back.

As Brooke and Noah race to uncover answers, emotions between them ignite. Noah struggles to protect Brooke at all costs and to conceal the secret that prevents him from becoming what he longs to be–the right man for her.

Everything is at stake as a horrifying truth emerges. . . .

The attack wasn’t the end game. It was only the beginning.

First Line Friday — Miss Austen

17 Jun

I have so much fun exploring independent bookstores! Last week I was in N Georgia and visited Book Bound Bookstore in Blairsville. What a jewel! Of course I had to buy a book, or two, or three . . . . One of those is today’s First Line Friday feature, Miss Austen by Gill Hornby. Along with not being able to pass by a bookstore or new books, I also cannot turn away an Austen knock-off. I can’t wait to read it.

Here’s the first line:

“Let us take that path.”

For fans of Jo Baker’s Longbourn, a witty, wonderfully original novel about Cassandra Austen and her famous sister, Jane.

Whoever looked at an elderly lady and saw the young heroine she once was?

England, 1840. Two decades after the death of her beloved sister, Jane, Cassandra Austen returns to the village of Kintbury and the home of her family friends, the Fowles. In a dusty corner of the vicarage, there is a cache of Jane’s letters that Cassandra is desperate to find. Dodging her hostess and a meddlesome housemaid, Cassandra eventually hunts down the letters and confronts the secrets they hold, secrets not only about Jane but about Cassandra herself. Will Cassandra bare the most private details of her life to the world, or commit her sister’s legacy to the flames? 

Moving back and forth between the vicarage and Cassandra’s vibrant memories of her years with Jane, interwoven with Jane’s brilliantly reimagined lost letters, Miss Austen is the untold story of the most important person in Jane’s life. With extraordinary empathy, emotional complexity, and wit, Gill Hornby finally gives Cassandra her due, bringing to life a woman as captivating as any Austen heroine.

First Line Friday — When The Day Comes

10 Jun

A time-traveling novel? Yes, please! Today’s First Line Friday features When The Day Comes by Gabrielle Meyer. Set in 1774 Colonial Williamsburg and 1914 Gilded Age New York City, this book is beyond intriguing. Find out all about it below.

But first, here’s the first line:

For as long as I could remember, my mama had told me that my life was a gift.

How will she choose, knowing all she must sacrifice?

Libby has been given a powerful gift: to live one life in 1774 Colonial Williamsburg and the other in 1914 Gilded Age New York City. When she falls asleep in one life, she wakes up in the other. While she’s the same person at her core in both times, she’s leading two vastly different lives.

In Colonial Williamsburg, Libby is a public printer for the House of Burgesses and the Royal Governor, trying to provide for her family and support the Patriot cause. The man she loves, Henry Montgomery, has his own secrets. As the revolution draws near, both their lives–and any hope of love–are put in jeopardy.

Libby’s life in 1914 New York is filled with wealth, drawing room conversations, and bachelors. But the only work she cares about–women’s suffrage–is discouraged, and her mother is intent on marrying her off to an English marquess. The growing talk of war in Europe only complicates matters.

But Libby knows she’s not destined to live two lives forever. On her twenty-first birthday, she must choose one path and forfeit the other–but how can she choose when she has so much to lose in each life?

Gabrielle Meyer lives in central Minnesota on the banks of the upper Mississippi River with her husband and four children. As an employee of the Minnesota Historical Society, she fell in love with the rich history of her state and enjoys writing fictional stories inspired by real people, places, and events. You can learn more about Gabrielle and her books at http://www.gabriellemeyer.com.

Find Gabrielle on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/AuthorGabrielleMeyer, Pinterest at http://www.Pinterest.com/gabriellemeyer/, Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/MeyerGabrielle, Goodreads, and her Website at http://www.gabriellemeyer.com.