Sheila's Books Read

Sheila's bookshelf: read

The Best Intentions
Scotland's Melody
The Secret Society of Salzburg
Secret of the Sonnets
20-40-60-Minute Dinners: Meals to Match the Time You Have
Through the Wilderness: My Journey of Redemption and Healing in the American Wild
Secret Santa Claus Club: A Tool to Help Parents Unwrap the Secret of Santa
Mr. Pudgins
Revenge Never Rests
The Best Mistake
Meriden Park
More Inspirational Stories for Young Women
The Great Tree: A Christmas Fable
To Capture His Heart
The Call of the Sea
Livvy and the Enchanted Woodland
Come, Gentle Night
The Bad Boy Theory
Guide To Smart Wedding Planning: What You want to know and everything you haven't thought of yet.

Sheila's favorite books »

2024 Goodreads Reading Challenge

2024 Reading Challenge

2024 Reading Challenge
Sheila has read 4 books toward her goal of 100 books.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

A Proper Scandal By Esther Hatch-Book Review and Giveaway

Product Details

  • Title: A Proper Scandal
  •  Author: Esther Hatch
  • Paperback: 222 pages
  • Genre: Regency Romance
  • Publisher: Covenant Communications (May 1, 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1524409375
  • ***I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review.***

Book Summary
Grace Sinclair has been callously cast out of her home. And though taken in as an orphaned child by the vicar and his wife, her unsurpassed beauty makes it impossible for her to remain in the vicar's household—with two daughters of their own about to enter Society, the vicar and his wife see Grace as nothing but competition. Thankfully, Grace's estranged Aunt Bell has agreed to take her in to her home in London. But Grace soon learns her situation has just gotten much worse.
It takes only a moment's acquaintance for Grace to ascertain that her aunt has married a detestable rake. And Aunt Bell, recognizing the danger of having her lovely niece too near her husband, gives Grace an ultimatum: the young woman has two weeks to find a man to marry, after which she will be turned out. With no experience in the art of attracting a husband, Grace quickly realizes that a worthy suitor might not be so easy to ensnare.

My Review
A Proper Scandal is such a fun new take on a Regency Romance. Grace is such a cute, naive girl that is thrown into a precarious situation to save herself from the clutches of a slimy step-uncle. I like how Grace stumbles about in her attempt to ensnare a husband. Nate never sees her coming. Between her stunning looks and her innocent charm, Nate never stood a chance. This romance was a fun one to watch unfold, with witty dialogue and humorous situations throughout. There is an element of danger and going against social norms if caught, but nothing too nefarious. This story does keep you guessing as secrets are revealed and you keep wondering how in the world everything will be resolved. I loved how the hero in this story is a wealthy business man and not a member of nobility. This unique story-line is a very refreshing change in the world of Regency Romance. 

Purchase your copy here:

Meet Author Esther Hatch:

Esther Hatch grew up on a cherry orchard in rural Utah. After high school, she alternated living in Russia to teach children English and attending Brigham Young University in order to get a degree in archaeology. She began writing when one of her favorite authors invited her to join a critique group. The only catch was she had to be a writer. Not one to be left out of an opportunity to socialize and try something new; she started on her first novel that week. Visit her at

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Monday, May 20, 2019

The Darkling Bride By Laura Andersen: Book Review

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Genre: Mystery/Suspense
***Checked out CD's from the public library***

Book Summary:

Three generations of Irish nobles face their family secrets in this spellbinding novel from the award-winning author of the Boleyn King trilogy.

The Gallagher family has called Deeprath Castle home for seven hundred years. Nestled in the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland, the estate is now slated to become a public trust, and book lover and scholar Carragh Ryan is hired to take inventory of its historic library. But after meeting Aidan, the current Viscount Gallagher, and his enigmatic family, Carragh knows that her task will be more challenging than she’d thought.

Two decades before, Aidan’s parents died violently at Deeprath. The case, which was never closed, has recently been taken up by a new detective determined to find the truth. The couple’s unusual deaths harken back a century, when twenty-three-year-old Lady Jenny Gallagher also died at Deeprath under mysterious circumstances, leaving behind an infant son and her husband, a renowned writer who never published again. These incidents only fueled fantastical theories about the Darkling Bride, a local legend of a sultry and dangerous woman from long ago whose wrath continues to haunt the castle.

The past catches up to the present, and odd clues in the house soon have Carragh wondering if there are unseen forces stalking the Gallagher family. As secrets emerge from the shadows and Carragh gets closer to answers—and to Aidan—could she be the Darkling Bride’s next victim?

My Review
So I listened to this novel on CD while driving back and forth to work. The narrator is very good. Even my teens became very interested in the story and made me catch them up when I listened without them. This novel was interesting and intense. The only thing I ever had a problem with is how it jumped around so much from the past to the present. This is not a casual listen because until you remember who all of the characters are it can be confusing. The author does a great job of a build up to an exciting finish. I figured out who the "bad guy" was a few chapters before it was revealed. This murder mystery/suspense is a good read for those readers who like to piece things together a chapter at a time. 

{There is some swearing and mention of sexual situations that never go into details.}

View all my reviews

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Daisies and Devotion {Book 2 in the Mayfield Family Series} A Proper Romance: By Josi S. Kilpack

Product Details:
Title:  Daisies and Devotion: A Proper Romance
{Book 2 in the Mayfield Family Series}
Author: Josi S. Kilpack
Genre: Historical Romance 
Publisher: Shadow Mountain 
Publication date: May 14, 2019 
 Pages: 304
***I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review***
 Book Summary
Timothy Mayfield is ready to marry for love, but, since his personal finances are thinner than he’d like, he knows he’ll also need to find a wife with wealth. After receiving an unexpected inheritance, Timothy’s circumstances change, and he is free to pursue his “perfect woman”—one with blonde hair, blue eyes, a light laugh, arched eyebrows, elegant fingers, and a dazzling smile, among nearly twenty other characteristics.

Maryann Morrington doesn’t match anything on Timothy’s list—except for wealth. An heiress in her own right, she is tired of men pursuing her only for her money. But at nearly twenty-two years old, and not a particularly stunning beauty, she can’t be as picky as her friend Timothy is.

The two friends end up playing matchmaker for each other. Timothy will find a decent gentleman for Maryann, and Maryann will prove to Timothy that his “perfect woman” doesn’t exist.

Until Miss Shaw comes to London.

Now, with Timothy’s heart captivated by the blonde, blue-eyed beauty, Maryann must decide if she should risk her heart and reveal her true feelings for her friend, or if she should settle for someone else. It’s an up-and-down game of “he loves me, he loves me not” with both hearts and friendship on the line. 
My Review
 Oh, was I excited to start reading Daisies and Devotion the second book in the Mayfield Family Series! I'm one of those diehards that always recommend you read the first book in the series. It will make the whole second story richer and of course, makes more sense overall. Also, the cover is just gorgeous so it invites readers to delve into the pages quickly.
In this series Elliott Mayfield, Timothy's Uncle, promises him money and land if he'll marry someone he approves of.  Elliott is doing the same with his other nieces and nephews. Timothy agrees because he was already in London looking for a wife with money but now he doesn't need the money so he writes his list. This list is of his perfect woman. The woman who'd held his interest previously was the rich Maryann who now realizes she doesn't quite fit the qualities he's looking for in a wife. From the beginning, these two characters have a unique relationship. They are good friends that help each other search for perfect marriage prospects. Of course, readers can see what will eventually happen, but this will lead them spending a lot of time together and they do grow closer.

Timothy is somewhat the clueless male that can't see what is right in front of him. Maryann puts up with a lot of nonsense from him but never speaks her mind and her true heart. There are many humorous conversations and situations that will make you laugh. There are also many things that happen that will make you frustrated. In the end, I loved this book! I enjoyed the wonderful character development and the growth of both Timothy and Maryann. 
I would not call this your typical Regency Romance because Maryann is not your regular swooning heroine. I liked that and she reminded me a lot of myself that doesn't put up with a lot of nonsense and tries to protect my heart. Josi Kilpack has once again written a captivating novel of romance, humor, and witty dialogue that kept me reading nonstop. Regency Romance lovers will also love this one too.

 Purchase Daisies and Devotion Here:

Meet Author Author: Josi S. Kilpack

Josi S. Kilpack hated to read until her mother handed her a copy of The Witch of Blackbird Pond when she was 13. From that day forward, she read everything she could get her hands on and credits her writing “education” to the many novels she has “studied” since then. She began writing her first novel in 1998 and has written twenty-five novels, one cookbook, and been part of multiple collaborations since then. She is a four-time Whitney Award winner and Best of State winner in Fiction.  Josi currently lives in Willard, Utah, with her husband and children.

When Kensington Press picked up her first national women's fiction novel, As Wide as the Sky, Josi was in need of a pen name to differentiate between her other genres. For years, Josi has bee called Jessica Pack by people who hear her name but don't know her, it made her new pen name easy to choose. As Wide as the Sky will be released in paperback sometime in 2018.
Learn More About the Author Here:

Promises and Primroses: First book in 
The Mayfield Family Series
Read my review of the first book HERE: 

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Finding Anne de Bourgh by Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen -- Blog Tour Review & Giveaway

Product Details
Author: Ronda Gibb Hinrichsen
Title: Finding Anne de Bourgh 
Genre: historical, regency, romance, mystery Publisher: Covenant Communications Publication date: May 1, 2019 Number of pages: 263
***I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review***

 Book Summary
As heiress of Rosings Park, Anne de Bourgh’s health is of utmost importance to her mother, Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Thus, following the shock of a recent fire at Rosings Park, the young woman is spirited away to Brighton to take the cure. While her domineering mother is bent on healing her daughter’s sickly constitution to secure her a suitable match, Anne herself is far more concerned with sketching the flora and fauna of the lovely sea town. It is in pursuit of artistic inspiration among the flowers that Anne becomes acquainted with Mr. Owen Talbot, a charming man with whom Anne feels an immediate connection, notwithstanding their differing stations.

But despite their growing esteem for one another, the couple faces an insurmountable problem: Lady Catherine has set her sights on a rich, well-connected man for her daughter, and Mr. Talbot is simply too common. With their love in jeopardy, the couple soon faces far graver problems. There has been a murder in Brighton, and Anne is innocently drawn into an amateur investigation that ultimately traces its roots to her own family. With a frightening foreshadowing regarding the de Bourghs, Anne begins to question whom she can truly trust.

Purchase Finding Anne de Bourgh
My Review
What a wonderful addition to the world of Regency Romance! Finding Anne de Bourgh is not only a great romantic novel but it's also a fantastic mystery suspense too. With my love for Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, I knew that this novel that expanded on Anne de Bourgh's life would hook my interest and it did. I loved this take on a well-known character and how Hinrichsen expanded her story. I also delighted in Owen Talbot and his strengths and trials that combined helped him become a better man. I enjoyed Anne's journey of learning to stand up to her very domineering mother and truly finding herself.

This novel is the best combination of keeping the reader guessing, rooting for favorite characters, and delighting in a fabulous ending.  
Meet Author Ronda Hinrichsen
Award-winning author, Ronda Hinrichsen (also writing as Kathleen Marks) and her family own a small farm located between the beautiful Rocky Mountains and the Great Salt Lake where she regularly sees eagles, hawks, owls, and ducks. Lots of ducks. She is the author of independently and traditionally published non-fiction, romantic suspense and speculative books as well as numerous magazine articles and stories for children and adults. She also enjoys teaching about writing in conference and classroom settings. To learn more about Ronda, visit her website at

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Friday, May 10, 2019

Charlotte's Promise By Jennifer Moore: Blog Tour Review & Free Book Giveaway

Product Details

  • Title: Charlotte's Promise
  • Author: Jennifer Moore
  • Paperback: 218 pages
  • Publisher: Covenant Communications (May 1, 2019)
  • Genre: Historical Romance
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1524409332
  • ***I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review*** 

 Book Summary
One year ago Charlotte Bower's life was ripped apart when Creek Indians attacked, killed her parents, and separated her from her young brother—now, she will stop at nothing to find him. After a year of captivity, she has finally made her escape. Her search will begin in New Orleans, where captives were taken after the raid. But how to reach a city hundreds of miles away? As she watches men boarding a waiting ship, Charlotte formulates a bold plan: if it's men they need for the ship's crew, it's a man they'll get. Taking on her childhood nickname, Charlie, it is all too easy to gain passage on the New Orleans-bound vessel. Easy, that is, until Charlie is caught . . .
From the moment he sets eyes on the new deckhand, Captain Alden Thatcher knows one thing for certain: Charlie Bower is no man. But for reasons of his own, he keeps her secret. As their journey progresses, however, the voyage is increasingly ill-fated. With danger ever present, Charlie and the captain find themselves relying on one another in ways they'd never imagined. As they draw closer to her goal, Charlotte is faced with the most perilous adventure of all—an adventure that may risk her heart.

 My Review
Charlotte's Promise is another book based in the time period when the War of 1812 was taking place. In another previous book that Moore wrote about this time period, I stated how refreshing it was to read a novel based during this period in the USA. I have always loved history and Jennifer Moore does an amazing job of portraying historical events in her novels.

The main character Charlotte is one I loved from the start. Her determination and courage in the face of hardship and danger made me root for her. Realizing the true danger she was in only makes her situation more pressing. Of course I loved that Captain Alden Thatcher is the main male character in this book. Readers first met him in the book, The Shipbuilder's Wife. Alden is the perfect hero in that he was kind, loyal, and protective to Charlotte and those in his service. As the story progresses both Charlotte and Alden have secrets that will finally come out. With all of the dangers found out on the sea, this slow build romance is sweet and does have a happy ending. I truly enjoyed this book and know that lovers of Historical Romance will enjoy it too.

Purchase Charlotte's Promise Here:

Meet Author Jennifer Moore:
Jennifer Moore is a passionate reader and writer of all things romance due to the need to balance the rest of her world that includes a perpetually traveling husband and four active sons, who create heaps of laundry that is anything but romantic. Jennifer has a B.A. in Linguistics from the University of Utah and is a Guitar Hero champion. She lives in northern Utah with her family, but most of the time wishes she was aboard a British frigate during the age of sail. 

Learn more about Jennifer and her books at her website HERE:

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Thursday, May 9, 2019

Wizard for Hire By Obert Skye: Book 1 and Book 2:Apprentice Needed-Book Reviews

 Book 1: Summary
Fourteen-year-old Ozzy lives near Portland, Oregon, and is desperate for help. His scientist parents have been kidnapped after discovering a formula that enables mind control. Their work was so top secret Ozzy is afraid to go to the police, but without help, he fears he'll never find his parents. Then he stumbles across a classified ad in the local newspaper that says "Wizard for Hire. Call 555-SPEL." Ozzy has read about wizards in books like Harry Potter, but wizards couldn't actually exist today, could they? After Ozzy meets the wizard Labyrinth — aka Rin — he's even more skeptical.

Sure, Rin dresses like a wizard, but the short robe and high-top tennis shoes seem unorthodox, as does Rin's habit of writing notes on his shoes and eating breakfast for every meal. Plus, Rin doesn't even cast any magic spells, which means that the unexplained coincidences that start happening around Ozzy are just that — coincidences.

With the help of a robotic-talking raven invented by Ozzy's father, a kind and curious girl at school who decides to help Ozzy, and, of course, a self-proclaimed wizard who may or may not have a magical wand, Ozzy begins an unforgettable quest that will lead him closer to the answers he desperately seeks about his missing parents.
Book 2: Summary
Ozzy Toffy’s adventure, which began in Wizard for Hire, continues when one dark and windy night, he gets out of bed, jumps out his window, and walks straight into the ocean.

More than ever, Ozzy could really use the services of Rin, the wizard he hired to help find his parents — but Rin is missing, despite Ozzy’s continual attempts to contact him. And Clark, the mechanical bird his father left him, is as peculiar and vain as ever.

When a mysterious package arrives, Ozzy and his good friend Sigi are sure that the plane ticket and thumb drive they find inside is from Rin. Trying to get Clark through security at the airport proves complicated — as most things are with Clark. But when they arrive in New York, they discover there’s even more adventure in store for them.

Will Rin return and save the day? Will Ozzy figure out why he keeps walking into the ocean? Can Sigi find a way to trust her delinquent father? Will someone please appreciate Clark the way he’d like to be appreciated? For once?

Wizard for Hire: Apprentice Needed is a story filled with humor and excitement that shows us the magic in everyday things.

My Review: Of the Series 
This series is such a fun and quirky one for middle-grade readers. It's different in many ways that will make readers interested in what is happening and keep reading to see where it will take you. I didn't start reading the series until book 2 had come out which in a way was great for me. I finished reading the first book and immediately started reading the second. 

Ozzy Toffy is a great hero looking for answers about his parent's disappearance. Living alone for many years on his own, with only a mechanical bird, Clark, as his friend Ozzy emerges into the real world to start living life and find the answers he's looking for. Along the way, he meets fellow classmate Sigi, and a Wizard named Rin. The wizard is full of life quite more than magic, at least that's what Ozzy thinks. Book one sets things up so well about Ozzy's parent's background and why they probably went missing and may be deceased. Rin comes along and in his oddball ways truly does help Ozzy. 

In book two after an exciting end of the villain in book one, the story starts several months later. Rin has disappeared and now Ozzy is living with Sigi and her mother, Rin's ex-wife. Of course, it doesn't take long for things to start heating up and again and Sigi, Clark, and Ozzy are off again on a new adventure; this time to New York City.  Many new things are uncovered about Ozzy, his parents, and why Ozzy's finger does weird things. Again, I love Clark the mechanical bird and his great wit.This book is exciting and has great action that keeps the story moving. This whole series is a fun one especially for tweens & teens between the ages of 10-15. Anyone that likes a little fantasy, mystery, and action combined will enjoy the Wizard for Hire books.

{Purchase both Book 1 & 2 of the Wizard for Hire series} from Here: 
Book 1:
Book 2:

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Undercover Honeymoon by Kari Iroz {Blog Tour Review and Giveaway)

Undercover Honeymoon by Kari Iroz

Genre: LDS Romantic Suspense/Clean Romance
Published: April 1, 2019, Covenant Communications, Inc
**I received a review copy in exchange for an honest review**

Book Summary
Wedding bells are finally ringing for Jacklyn “Jack” Wyatt and her FBI-agent fiancĂ©, Damon Wade. After their adventurous beginning, the happy couple finds the relative calm leading up to their big day a huge relief. Unfortunately, it seems the peace and quiet were too good to last. As they embark on their honeymoon, a week long cruise, Jack can’t shake the feeling that something is off with her new husband. When she stumbles upon a secret plot—one in which her husband is a key player—she realizes this getaway will be anything but smooth sailing. When she delves into the shady happenings aboard the ship, Jack realizes Damon’s involvement is just the tip of the iceberg—she has become an unwitting player in a deadly conspiracy, and in such close quarters, there is no escape. Now, Jack has no choice but to work with her new husband to unravel the truth before their happily ever after—and their lives—are ended all too soon.

My Review: I really liked this novel but wished that I'd read the first two books in the series first. I felt a little lost like I had started watching a TV series but I missed the first two seasons. Thankfully, it didn't take long to realize how funny main character Jacklyn, "Jack" is. Her humor is throughout the novel whether she's dealing with wedding planning problems or being kidnapped on her honeymoon. The author did supply a lot of background flashes of what happened before when Jack and Damon got together. The best part of the book is when the couple are finally on their honeymoon cruise and the action really starts. Their honeymoon turns into more of a working situation for Damon's FBI job. This novel is a great mix of romance, action, dangerous situations, and religion and trust in God. Though it is written with LDS(Latter-Day Saints) characters and religious customs, it is not preachy or over the top.I enjoyed this book enough that I know I'll be going back to read how Jack and Damon became a couple.

Purchase Undercover Honeymoon Here:

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