The strongest love is formed in the crucible of hardship
As Norah King surveys her family land in Iowa in 1880, she is acutely aware that it is all she has left, and she will do everything in her power to save it–even if that means marrying a man she hardly knows. Days before her wedding, Norah discovers an injured man on her property. Her sense of duty compels her to take him in and nurse him back to health. Little does she realize just how much this act of kindness will complicate her life and threaten the future she’s planned.
Norah’s care does more than aid Quincy Barnes’s recovery–it awakens his heart to possibilities. Penniless and homeless, he knows the most honorable thing he can do is head on down the road and leave Norah to marry her intended. But walking away from the first person to believe in him proves much harder than he imagined.
“The farmland went on forever, and it smelled like happiness.”
One thing I can count on when I read a Rachel Fordham book. I know I’m going to love it, and Where the Road Bends is no exception.
Fordham writes with a sweet, historical romance, prairie-style. I love Norah King and her innocent, one-chance-left-self. She is stronger than she knows, and has a truly compassionate heart for others. How I wish she had had someone she trusted besides Jake Granger and Quincy Barnes to advise her!
Quincy is quite the dashing hero. I loved his willingness to share his faith and his compassionate heart as it prompts him to act, as well. He shares much of himself with Norah, trying to encourage her.
“But I don’t have an author weaving words together, ensuring a happy ending.”~ Norah
…“You do have an author,” he whispered. “He’s there, working for your good.” ~ Quincy
I think I identified most with the housekeeper, Mrs. Dover. She has seen enough of life to give some very sage advice to both Quincy and Norah.
Highly recommended, especially for readers of Kim Vogel Sawyer.
I found the story wonderfully unpredictable. So many heart-wrenching moments, where I wanted to grab up a character and hug them, or yell at them to make a different choice. (It didn’t work.)
I received a copy of the book from Revell through LibraryThing Early Reviewers, plus I purchased my own ebook. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
“The dark is easier to cure than other fears.”
“…if you add light, the dark dies.”
“I’m afraid of coming close to happiness, only to lose it again.
“Trust is a finicky thing.”
Magnificent!! A Heart-wrenching, Unpredictable Prairie Romance
About the Author
Rachel Fordham has long been fascinated by all things historical or in the words of her children “old stuff”. Often the historical trivia she discovers is woven into her children’s bedtime tales. Despite her love for good stories she didn’t attempt writing a novel until her husband challenged her to do so (and now she’s so glad he did). Since that time she’s often been found typing or researching while her youngest child naps or frantically writing plot twists while she waits in the school pick-up line. In addition to her passion for storytelling she enjoys reading, being outdoors and seeing new places. Rachel lives with her husband and children on an island in Washington state.
Learn more about Rachel’s current projects at rachelfordham.com
This K-9 will stop at nothing to keep a child safe.
When a little boy is threatened, Officer Daniella Vargas and K-9 partner, Zara, are assigned to pose as his nanny to uncover the culprit’s identity. Suspecting one of the guests in his inn, widower Sam Kavanaugh’s only option is to begrudgingly trust Daniella and Zara to help. But can they solve the case and its mysterious connection to Sam’s late wife before it’s too late?
“Sam had done more than gotten under her skin. He seemed to have burrowed right into her heart.”
My nurturing heart loves this story! Mentink has a great understanding of toddlers, plus has done her police K-9 research well. Both act as great buttresses to the actual romance. Mentink so vividly describes the wonders of southwestern New Mexico and the Gila National Forest that the reader will put it on their bucket list to visit. IF they can disassociate the terror and suspense of Undercover Assignment from the park itself!
You can’t help but fall in love with three year-old Oliver, whose widowed father, Sam, runs a desert lodge. Sam and his FBI-assigned officer, Daniella Vargas, vie for control of protecting the inn and especially sweet Ollie. Each avoids letting others too close due to very different painful pasts. However, both Sam and Daniella share a strong faith and are learning to trust God even when they can’t understand why God works as He does. “He’d come to a place of acceptance that God had not saved his wife, but he certainly didn’t understand it. The definition of faith, he thought. To trust, even when you don’t understand.”
Book four of The Rocky Mountain K-9 Unit series, there is a thread presented that apparently ties all the books together. However, it is loose enough that you can enjoy Undercover Assignment as a stand-alone, which I did.
Sometimes Mentink just makes me smile, which is a great thing amidst romantic suspense.
“You’re a nanny of many talents.” She waved an airy hand. “Mary Poppins has nothing on me.”
and, “If there was a booklet on how to drive people away, she could probably be a coauthor.”
I received an ARC of this book from the author through Celebrate Lit, plus I pre-ordered my own copy. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
“God loved all His children, dirty or clean, poor or comfortable, in the suffering and the sunshine.”
“People who were determined to do evil would find a way no matter what the circumstances.”
“If you don’t like the path you’re on,” she’d say, “you got two choices. Learn to like it more, or find the new one God’s got for you.”
Magnificent!! I always enjoy a Dana Mentink romantic suspense!
About the Author
Dana Mentink is a USA TODAY and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author. She’s written more than forty mystery and suspense novels for Love Inspired Suspense, Harvest House, and Poisoned Pen Press. She is honored to have received two ACFW Carol Awards, a Holt Medallion Award, and a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. Please visit her on the web at http://www.danamentink.com to sign up for her newsletter, or find her on Twitter, Facebook and Bookbub.
More from Dana
What a joy to participate in a series with seven other talented authors! A continuity series is a set of books, each written by a different author, and each with its own suspense plot along with an overarching series plot and characters. It’s a very complicated project to complete, but the fantastic part is chatting, collaborating, and sometimes commiserating with other writers. What a rare treat, since most of our work is done alone in dark rooms with computer screens and bottomless cups of coffee! This series was especially fun to write because of the whole wilderness lodge setting which is my favorite type of story. Picture it! Ancient cliff dwellings, a freak electrical storm, twenty-four hours with no power and a killer on the loose! That’s my kind of suspense novel. I hope you will enjoy this multi author series as much as we enjoyed creating it!
It’s official: Brynna Phillips is done with men. They only break your heart. But just when she makes this declaration, her friend Jan convinces Brynna to join her on a camping vacation in Sonoma Wine Country. As they wind their way toward their destination, spanking-new mini camper in tow, Brynna recalls her teenage camp romance with a boy named Leroy. How can it have been nearly 30 years ago? All she remembers is that Leroy was a genuinely good guy and that his family owned a vineyard–in Sonoma. She doesn’t even remember his last name. Jan insists they look for him, and the search begins.
Beyond the slim chance they’d ever be able to find him are questions that have haunted Brynna for decades, including What is the point of digging up the past? and Can Leroy ever forgive me for losing touch?
Bestselling author Melody Carlson invites you on a trip to rediscover the carefree days of youth and, just maybe, to get a second chance at love.
If you’re looking for an easy-flowing, contemporary romance novel with a middle-age pair, Looking for Leroy by Melody Carlson deserves a read. The tone of this story made me smile and laugh.
Brynna is a divorced, elementary school teacher whose vice-principal invites her along on a summer camping trip out west. It is a trip that has the potential to change her life.
Leroy Sorrentino is the widowed vintner of a small California vineyard. Preparing to celebrate the historical longevity of the vineyard, two of his three grown daughters attempt to market and make Sorrentino’s profitable.
I liked the premise of the storyline and the predictable but realistic conflicts Carlson presents for her characters to overcome.
“Had he settled? Both in life and in marriage? He sometimes wondered.” This is a very sad, possibly tragic, thought for a person to have to ponder after it seems to late to make changes.
I also wondered if LeRoy were my friend, what advice I would give him about his love life. Each of his daughters certainly has an opinion! Some characters didn’t grow as much or as fast as I wanted them to. Honestly, people in real life are like that, though. We people don’t always grow as quickly and steadily forward as we should.
Sophie is my favorite character. She seems warm, accepting, able to see the best in others, and willing to forgive. Plus, she’s a hard worker!
I received a copy of this book from Revell Reads and NetGalley. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
“Training dogs was much easier than training daughters.”
“Wisdom, understanding, knowledge. More than ever, she longed for those elusive qualities—because she felt foolish, confused, and just plain stupid.”
Great! Sweet Romance with Middle-Age Couple
About the Author
Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women and children. That’s a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a “storyteller.” Her novels range from serious issues like schizophrenia (Finding Alice) to lighter topics like house-flipping (A Mile in My Flip-Flops) but most of the inspiration behind her fiction comes right out of real life. Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, TrueColors etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She’s won a number of awards (including Romantic Time’s Career Achievement Award, the Rita and the Gold Medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog. To find out more about Melody Carlson, visit her website at
Can this undercover agent save the woman he loves–or is her heart as counterfeit as the money he’s been sent to track down?
After all that Grandfather has sacrificed to raise her, Theresa Plane owes it to him to save the family name–and that means clearing their debt with creditors before she marries Edward Greystone. But when one of the creditors’ threats leads her to stumble across a midnight meeting, she discovers that the money he owes isn’t all Grandfather was hiding. And the secrets he kept have now trapped Theresa in a life-threatening fight for her home–and the truth.
After months of undercover work, Secret Service operative Broderick Cosgrove is finally about to uncover the identity of the leader of a notorious counterfeiting ring. That moment of triumph turns to horror, however, when he finds undeniable proof that his former fiance is connected. Can he really believe the woman he loved is a willing participant? Protecting Theresa and proving her innocence may destroy his career–but that’s better than failing her twice in one lifetime.
They must form a partnership, tentative though it is. But there’s no question they’re both still keeping secrets–and that lack of trust, along with the dangerous criminals out for their blood, threatens their hearts, their faith, and their very survival.
Ah, a deliciously, satisfying debut novel of the Gilded Age from Crystal Caudill. A couple, Theresa Payne and Broderick Cosgrove, once engaged, must determine if they can trust each other and if there is any hope for a rekindled romance. Will they be able to work together to uncover the true counterfeiters in Cincinnati?
Caudill emphasizes themes of trust, forgiveness, and family as she provides plenty of emotion, action, and truth. “Even if… “ is a big question that Theresa grapples with mightily. The novel is well-paced, balancing all the threads together- romance, history, suspense, and life lessons- delightfully.
Broderick is the long-absent love; tall, charming, and witty. But, he is shrouded in mystery. His methods are a little suspect. His results, well, not quick enough for the boss. Is he a man of faith and integrity or one who would play Theresa and his partners for fools?
Theresa is wonderfully headstrong, intensely loyal, and also very intelligent. Is she intelligent enough to figure out her grandfather’s secrets? Loyalty is a great quality if one places it in the right person. Can Theresa discern who to trust with her secrets? Theresa tends to be quick to forgive and allow most people second chances. I loved this about her, but sure rooted for her trust not to be abused!
While Theresa and Broderick are relatable and sure to earn the reader’s loyalty, other characters kept hopping the good guy/bad guy fence for me. What I thought of characters like Isaacs, Lydia, Abraham, Mrs. Hawking, Grandfather and others was variable. This fluidity made the story very suspenseful and I couldn’t put it down!
With thoughtful questions at the end, this would be a good book for a book club discussion.
I received a copy of the book from the author and publisher through I Read with Audra. (I also bought a copy for my keeper shelf.) No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
“Nathaniel wronged you, but God convicted him, and he’s a different man now.”
“It’s so nice to be together again. Isn’t it?” Theresa squeezed their arms…”“About as nice as an outhouse in summer.” …”Then I suppose it’s a good thing I have plumbing.”
“Feelings change, and they can lie, but God’s presence is constant and true. Whether we feel Him or not.”
Love, not blood, makes a family.
Family. The word stuck in her throat like a lozenge, melting to soothe an ache she’d long accepted as permanent. Her blood relatives were gone, but the love flanking either side of her pulsed with life and healing. They may not always see eye to eye, but they cared. More than that, they wanted her.
God answered Theresa’s prayers this time, but that didn’t mean He would in the future. Could she trust Him with what little she had left? But trust didn’t mean she’d get what she wanted. So what did it mean?
“…no matter what happens or what you think you’ve lost, you cannot lose God….
Magnificent!! This is a Satisfying Debut Novel of the Gilded Age, and I’m looking forward to the next two in the series!!
About the Author
Crystal Caudill is the author of “dangerously good historical romance,” with her work garnering awards from Romance Writers of America and ACFW.
She is a stay-at-home mom and caregiver, and when she isn’t writing, Caudill can be found playing board games with her family, drinking hot tea, or reading other great books at her home outside Cincinnati, Ohio.
Genre: Christian Historical Mystery, Fairytale retelling
Release date: November 2, 2021
There’s a deadly secret in them thar hills—and gold, or so they say.
Deeply in debt to a wealthy local, Charles Sinclair, Dorothy Hodges’ father finally promises she’ll pay and in gold, no less. If only Dorothy could take to take the promises he spins out of thin air and turn them into that gold, all would be well.
With the help of a strange, rumpled man, Dorothy does manage to bring payment to one of Sinclair’s sons only to discover it won’t pay off the debt. Will the next payment be enough? The next?
When Charles Sinclair ends up dead, Dorothy is the obvious prime suspect, but Sinclair’s son isn’t so certain. Together they work to clear her name and find the real murderer of the Superstitions, but will they find the answers buried in those hills?
Find out in this next book in the Ever After Mysteries, combining beloved fairy tales and mysteries. The Lost Dutchman’s Secret offers a retelling of “Rumplestilskin” that requires more digging than a miner searching for The Lost Dutchman Mine.
“Dorothy took a deep breath. ‘Why should I trust you? I don’t know you.’ The man grinned one more time. ‘Because you know that you can’t trust Charles Sinclair. I’m your only other choice.’“
As others mention, the book starts a little slowly and it took me a while to be enticed deeply into its caverns and canyons. Once intrigued, I was eager to discover who was behind all the evil goings-on in the desert.
It was hard to imagine someone successfully pulling off the life that Charles Sinclair, a wealthy loan shark, does. His children have no idea of what he really does for a living.
I felt so badly for Dorothy. Her father is so selfish and uncaring. He even sets her up for trouble, with no desire or effort on his part to help her. Dorothy herself trusts God, often praying for help. She does have to be reminded, though, that a Christian confesses a wrong and asks forgiveness. Once that is done, we have to accept the forgiveness and move on. “To continue to dwell over and over on what you should or should not have done will change nothing. To continue to wallow in guilt seems to suggest that Christ’s blood is not enough.”
Little Hazel is adorable! I just wanted to squeeze her, and wish her brother Theo would love her as she desired.
The conclusion of the Lost Dutchman’s Secret by Rebekah Jones left me well-satisfied. Many threads come together to make it a complex mystery. The mystery is thoroughly enjoyable by this point, and I was sorry to leave our new friends behind.
I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Great! Slow Start, but Intriguing Mystery!
About the Author
Rebekah Jones is first and foremost a follower of the Living God. She started writing as a little girl, seeking to glorify her King with her books and stories. Rebekah is an old soul in a young body (she’s not 12 —honest!) While her exact age is classified, her interests are not. Among them are reading a variety of books, singing, playing, and composing music, studying all manner of subjects, nannying an adventurous group of youngsters, and, of course, writing her books, poems, articles, and short stories. She writes a wide range of books from gentle children’s adventures to family sagas to murder mysteries.
More from Rebekah
“They say that no one had ever seen gold ore like it before, neither have they ever since. Except in the possession of Jacob Waltz. His mine had ore of higher value and higher potency than any other mine found in Arizona…”
What if the Miller’s daughter from the tale of Rumpelstiltskin didn’t have to spin gold, but pay it? And because of an enormous debt – that she had no way of knowing the value? And her father wasn’t a miller, but an old miner with a penchant for carving animals while living in the Arizona desert? And what if, for her pains, she found herself mixed up in a murder?
And what if, somehow intermixed with this poor young woman and her troubles, came the legend of the Lost Dutchman’s Goldmine?
If you don’t know about the legend of that lost mine, you should. Or I think that you should. It’s a real legend as old as the 1860’s. Except, it wasn’t lost when Jacob Waltz went bragging about it. That came later.
The mountains that house the legend are magnificent. When a friend of mine came to visit me, she and I went to explore the area around the Superstition Mountains, as well as a part of the mountains themselves. Standing in a forest of cacti and brush, the jagged rocks and sharp peaks towered above my head, while a critter skittered unseen. Beautiful isn’t quite a strong enough word to describe it. As we hiked up the mountain, making our way through a myriad of desert plant life, rocks of so many shapes and sizes, and tiny critters, I could picture Dorothy, the miner’s daughter.
The modern structures and buildings in sight, faded in my mind’s eye, and I could imagine the young woman partway up the mountain in 1929, wearing her old, faded dress, and staring out across the valley. We plotted out where her father’s shack would have stood, and I made note of a perfect crevice of rock where she might have sat to think or read. I rather found myself wishing I could live out there myself, even if living in a shack in the heat of the Arizona summer doesn’t wholly appeal to me.
When I finally got in front of my manuscript again, I could see Dorothy’s world so clearly, I can only hope I managed to capture it in the book itself. I doubt if I could have captured the beauty of those mountains in words, the sight of them as they changed colors in the sunset, or the glowing starry sky above them after dark.
As for the Lost Dutchman’s Goldmine, I would be lying if I said I didn’t entertain fantasies about exploring the mountains to discover it, but we certainly did not go that far into the mountains. Besides, it was June in the Arizona desert. One does not blindly venture into the mountains on such an errand in such a time of year unless one has a death wish. It’s rather fun to imagine though. Perhaps one day, I can go on a search – though I confess, I doubt it.
As for the book, I won’t say whether that lost goldmine is discovered or not. I’ll leave that for a reader to discover for themselves.
Bodyguard Sally Wilson has become the target. Can she save her own life as well as her daughter’s?
Christmas is supposed to be the happiest time of the year, but when Sally’s young daughter, Emma, becomes the target of child traffickers, and the little girl’s biological father wants Sally dead, the Christmas season takes a dark turn.
Police officer, Dillon Brady, responds to a call for help at the home of his friend and Protection Inc. bodyguard, Sally Wilson. When their relationship tips beyond friendship, Dillon is determined no one will hurt Sally or her daughter again. Will his resolve be enough?
Sally is drawn to Dillon. He’s a natural with Emma and appears to care about both of them. Sally’s been fooled before by a man she believed loved her, but what if it’s an act? Can Sally learn to trust again and follow her heart, or will Dillon get relegated to the friend zone?
Award winning author Kimberly Rose Johnson married her college sweetheart and lives in the Pacific Northwest. From a young child Kimberly has been an avid reader. That love of reading fostered a creative mind and led to her passion for writing. She especially loves romance and writes contemporary romance and romantic mystery and suspense with a heart.
Kimberly holds a degree in Behavioral Science from Northwest University in Kirkland, Washington, and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.
Every year since I signed the contract for my debut novel, a book set at Christmastime, I have made it a goal to write a Christmas book, usually a novella. This year, Personal Threat is that book.
I wrapped up the series with Personal Threat. My husband came up with the title for this one because the threat in this book is very personal for one of the Protection Inc. team members.
We first met Sally in book two of the series and it seemed only fitting she starred in a book of her own. We also get to know Dillon better in this book which for me was super fun to write. He’s played an important and growing role as the series has progressed and is one of my favorite characters in the series.
“She couldn’t take much more of these adrenaline bursts. She was liable to age ten years at this rate.” Yet, it seems all of Personal Threat, #5 Protection Inc, by Kimberly Johnson, is made up of adrenaline rushes. From start to finish, you will be glued to your seat as you quickly thumb through or swipe pages.
Sally Wilson, a member of the Protection Inc, team, is frantic to protect her young adopted daughter, Emma. Emma’s biological father wants her back and will stop at nothing to get her. Sally must utilize the professional help of her own team, plus the policeman they call in for back-up when the chips are down.
Trust is a huge issue. If Sally couldn’t trust her first love, how can she trust Dillon Brady, a man who is becoming more and more important with each tumultuous day?
I enjoyed seeing all the Protection Inc group again and getting glimpses of their continuing lives. It was neat seeing this group grow even closer and expand to include one, not their technically their own.
I loved that Dillon is persistent enough in his pursuit that he takes Sally to God in prayer. He actually challenges her to ask God for more than she has considered or hoped. “I’m going to pray for you that the Lord will open your heart to love again. But to a man that will treasure and love you the way God intended…“What’s the matter, Sally? Don’t you want God’s help in the love department?” “It’s not that. It never occurred to me to bother Him with my love life or lack thereof.” I believe Sally begins to understand here what Dillon is getting at… God is interested in every part of a person’s life, and He can be trusted, no matter what circumstances say. A lesson Sally sorely needs to learn and so do many readers.
Personal Threat is part of a series that is best read in order to understand and appreciate the relationships within the various books. If you like children, romantic suspense, or reading about workgroups that form familial bonds, this is a good choice.
I received a copy of this book from CelebrateLit. All opinions are solely my own.
Repairs on the Golden Gate Bridge Uncover a Century-Old Murder
Walk through Doors to the Past via a new series of historical stories of romance and adventure.
Underwater archaeologist Kayla Richardson is called to the Golden Gate Bridge where repairs to one of the towers uncovers two human remains from the late 1800s and the 1930s. The head of the bridge restoration is Steven Michaels, who dives with Kayla, and a friendship develops between them. But as the investigation heats up and gold is found that dates back to the gold rush, more complications come into play that threaten them both. Could clues leading to a Gold Rush era mystery that was first discovered during the building of the bridge still ignite an obsession worth killing for?
“The mystery and legend of the Lucky Martha just got a lot more complicated. Because they weren’t just dealing with an excavation. Now he was pretty certain they were dealing with murder. “ Travel back in time to the building of the Golden Gate Bridge, the years before as San Francisco is being formed, and again forward to present-day San Fran. Bridge of Gold by Kimberley Woodhouse is certainly one of Woodhouse’s best! The third in the Doors of the Past series, each book is a standalone novel, involving a dual timeline. Woodhouse has masterfully built so much suspense into this story of two couples, Luke and Margo, and Kayla and Steven. Generations apart, 3 of the four individuals are divers, working on or around the Golden Gate Bridge. I love dual timelines, and this one is no exception, extremely well-done. Woodhouse alternately hands us various “jigsaw puzzle pieces” of the story, challenging the reader to put together the mystery (and there are several!) before it(they) are revealed.
Fear, Trust, Letting Go, Greed, Entitlement, and Forgiveness (of the most heinous crimes) are all themes.) I loved being inside so many different characters’ minds. I could feel each person’s need to keep secrets or respond in the way they did (mostly). Woodhouse pulls out all the stops with some great twisted thinking on the part of her criminals, great story twists, and even the fact that the author’s notes came in the beginning, as opposed to the end of the story. That alone really whetted my appetite for this great historical fiction novel! I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher via Celebrate Lit. No positive review was required. My thoughts are voluntarily submitted, and all opinions are my own.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Magnificent! Another Winner for Barbour and Woodhouse!
About the Author
Kimberley Woodhouse is an award-winning and bestselling author of more than twenty fiction and nonfiction books. A popular speaker and teacher, she’s shared her theme of “Joy Through Trials” with more than half a million people across the country at more than 2,000 events. Kim and her incredible husband of twenty-five-plus years have two adult children. She’s passionate about music and Bible study and loves the gift of story. You can connect with Kimberley at: http://www.kimberleywoodhouse.com and http://www.facebook.com/KimberleyWoodhouseAuthor
More from Kimberley
BRIDGE OF GOLD was a blast for me to write. Not only do I love writing dual-timeline stories, but the present-day hero and heroine are named after my daughter and her husband. Steven and Kayla in the book are fictitious, but there are a few things in the book that do mimic their real-life namesakes.
One of them is food.
My son-in-law Steven in real life is six-foot-four and active military. The man can eat. It’s amazing to me how many calories it takes just for him to survive! Then there’s my daughter, Kayla. She was an elite swimmer for many years along with her brother. I could never keep them fed when they were at the height of their swimming careers. In fact, I joked that all I did was cook and load the dishwasher during those years.
To celebrate the release of BRIDGE OF GOLD, I’m going to give out a recipe that I created almost thirty years ago. It went through many revisions the first few months as I perfected it and now you get a special treat because I do not give this recipe out. In fact, one of my dearest friends begged for it when our kids were little. I gave in but made her promise to close her eyes while she made it (LOL) and to never, ever give it to anyone else.
Enjoy! And thanks for joining us on the tour for BRIDGE OF GOLD. I hope you love it.
Kim’s Chocolate Chunk Cookies – recipe by Kimberley Woodhouse
2 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
½ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. kosher salt
¾ cup melted/browned butter (this is important! Don’t skip this step)
2 Tb. Hot chocolate mix
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
1 – 12 ounce package mega morsels (I use Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips)
Directions: combine the first three dry ingredients and mix well. In a small saucepan on the stove, melt and brown the butter. Medium heat is recommended but you’ve got to watch it so it doesn’t burn. You want a beautiful caramel color. Set aside and allow to cool to around 100 degrees F before continuing. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Once the browned butter is cool, add the hot chocolate mix to it. Transfer to a stand mixer and blend the butter mixture with the sugar. Whip it until well combined and frothy about 2 mins. Gradually add eggs and flour mixture, beating on low just until blended. Stir in chocolate chips. Using a cookie scoop, drop heaping TB scoops 2 inches apart on parchment paper lined cookie sheets. Bake at 325 degrees for 12-14 minutes, watching carefully. Allow to cool on cookie sheets for 5 minutes and then transfer to cooling racks. Enjoy!
For other fun tidbits about BRIDGE OF GOLD make sure you check out my blog at – kimberleywoodhouse.com
Celebrity chef Maxwell Cavanaugh is known for many things: his multiple Michelin stars, his top-rated Culinary Channel show To the Max, and most of all his horrible temper. Hadley Beckett, host of the Culinary Channel’s other top-rated show, At Home with Hadley, is beloved for her Southern charm and for making her viewers feel like family.
When Max experiences a very public temper tantrum, he’s sent packing to get his life in order. When he returns, career in shambles, his only chance to get back on TV and in the public’s good graces is to work alongside Hadley.
As these polar-opposite celeb chefs begin to peel away the layers of public persona and reputation, they will not only discover the key ingredients for getting along, but also learn the secret recipe for unexpected forgiveness . . . and maybe even love. In the meantime, hide the knives.
Fan-favorite Bethany Turner serves up a heaping helping of humor and romance with this thoroughly modern story centered on cooking, enemies, and second chances.
Looking for some great laughs, a good, clean romance, with tension and twists right up to the end? Look no further. Bethany Turner’s Hadley Beckett’s Next Dish is a great read. Hadley Beckett is a sweet, country, Southern gal who has her own homey-type cooking show. We meet her as she faces off against infamous bad-boy chef Max Cavanaugh in a taped cooking contest.
This novel is both comic relief and one to make you introspective. As the point of view switches between Hadley in first person and Max in third, we get to see both characters struggle against themselves and each other. Can Max the terrible re-invent himself into a lovable, likable person? Can Hadley trust that love doesn’t have to end badly? And, of course, can they prove to their Renowned tv audience that two chefs are not too many for one kitchen?
Ms. Turner has penned a book I couldn’t put down, with twists in just the right places. Bethany Turner likes to challenge the reader to think about things differently. This time one of the topics is alcoholism.
Not everyone who crashes and burns due to alcohol is an alcoholic. This is a message that Max strives to give out.
Hadley mentions a few Biblical characters, and Max mentions wanting to find out what causes her to be different. Beyond that, Turner chooses not to elaborate. I was disappointed, as I love to carry away a few spiritual nuggets of wisdom. All in all, a very fun, clean book, just without the raisôn d’être I hoped for.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and Revell through RevellReads via NetGalley. This in no way affects my opinions, which are solely my own.
5 Stars- Superior – Hits My Reading Sweet Spot
About the Author
Bethany Turner is the award-winning author of The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck and Wooing Cadie McCaffrey and the director of administration for Rock Springs Church in Southwest Colorado. A former bank executive and a three-time cancer survivor (all before she turned 35), Bethany knows that when God has plans for your life, it doesn’t matter what anyone else has to say. Because of that, she’s chosen to follow his call to write. She lives with her husband and their two sons in Colorado, where she writes for a new generation of readers who crave fiction that tackles the thorny issues of life with humor and insight. Learn more at seebethanywrite.com.