Sheila's Books Read

Sheila's bookshelf: read

What Would the Founding Fathers Think: A Young American's guide to understanding the mess our country is in and how we get out
Isabelle Webb: Legend of the Jewel
Captive Heart
Cobble Cavern
Caller ID
Summer of Secrets
On Little Wings
We Lived in Heaven: Spiritual Accounts of Souls Coming to Earth
Christ's gifts to women
A Woman's power: threads that bind us to god
Scary School
Hope's journey
Targets in Ties
Crater Lake: Battle for Wizard Island
With a Name like Love
Sean Griswold's head

Sheila's favorite books »

2022 Goodreads Reading Challenge

2022 Reading Challenge

2022 Reading Challenge
Sheila has read 6 books toward her goal of 90 books.

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Coming Soon on April 5th 2021: Curse Queen (Forbidden Forest #4) by Amber Argyle


A warrior enchantress. An unrequited love. A new kind of fairytale . . . 

You think you know the truth behind the curse's origins? You know nothing. 
The path of a warrior enchantress is bathed in blood and magic.

Born to one of the most powerful families in the kingdom, Eiryss lives a life of luxury and magic. Until her father commits the ultimate act of treason.

Treason that sparks a war.

The life Eiryss knew is over. Her one-time friends are gone. All but Ramass. And if he would just look at her - touch her - the way she longs for, she might be able to bear it. But his heart belongs to another. There is only one path for Eiryss now: become a warrior enchantress and fight for what's rightfully hers. And if the powers that be deny her, well . . .

If they won't give Eiryss magic, she'll steal it.

CURSE QUEEN is a new fairy tale with hints of Snow White and Mulan. Though it fits best as the final book in the Forbidden Forest Series, it can be read as a stand alone. If you love stories filled with romance, dark magic, and wicked curses, pre-order your copy today!

HERE: Pre-Order Price is only $7.99!!

Other Books in the series:

Book 0.5

Lady of Shadows
A lady. A soldier. And the beast that hunts them.

Can you hear him? The beast is coming for you...

Lady Caelia has shut herself in her manor house for months, hiding from her town’s stinging gossip and her father’s bitter disappointment. She's convinced her life couldn't possibly be any worse. 

And then her only remaining friend is taken by the beast. 

On the night of the girl's funeral, Caelia stumbles upon something wicked. Something that leaves her only one possible escape.

The Forbidden Forest and the beast within. 

But Caelia's not the only one on the run from the shadows of the past. Gendrin failed to protect someone once. He won't fail again. If the two can learn to trust each other, they stand a chance of defeating the beast that hunts them.

And maybe - just maybe - they'll heal their broken hearts.

Book 1

Stolen Enchantress

Book 2

Piper Prince
An enchantress. Her prince. A dark curse . . .

Prince Denan lured Larkin into the Forbidden Forest with his magic panpipes and forced her to marry him. Together, they uncovered centuries of secrets surrounding the curse that spawned the wraiths. And Larkin began to fall in love with the man who had taken everything from her.

But the closer Larkin comes to the truth, the harder the wraiths hunt her.

If Larkin is to survive, she’ll have to unravel the curses's darkest secrets. Worse, those secrets are buried in the crypts of the Black Druids, men who consider Larkin a traitor they’ll kill on sight. But Larkin isn't the only one the wraiths are after.

Her piper prince's life hangs in the balance.

Beauty & the Beast and The Pied Piper collide in this romantic fairy tale retelling. Fans of A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES and A CURSE SO DARK AND LONELY will love the unique magic and daring adventure in Piper Prince . Read your copy today!

Book 3

Wraith King
An enchantress. Her king. A dying magic . . .

An assassin has set his sights on killing Larkin and ending her new reign as queen. Worse, the magic is dying. The magic that protects mankind from the wraith. The same magic Larkin has used to keep the curse from destroying the man she loves.

Because once that curse reaches Denan's eyes, he will be worse than dead.

But there is one hope left. There is a darkness growing inside Larkin. And with that darkness comes power. Perhaps even enough power to defeat the wraith.

But in embracing that darkness, Larkin risks becoming the very thing that hunts her.

You don't want to miss the exciting conclusion to the Forbidden Forest Series. Read the daring Beauty and the Beast and The Pied Piper fairytale retelling that has captured hearts the world over. Read Wraith King and let the magic, adventure, and romance sweep you away!

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Stella By McCall Hoyle-Book Review and Special Art Work of Stella by my 2nd Grade Class


Product Details

  • Title: Stella
  • Author: McCall Hoyle
  • Publisher : Shadow Mountain (March 2, 2021)
  • Genre: Realistic Fiction
  • Language : English
  • Hardcover : 176 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 1629729019
  • ISBN-13 : 978-1629729015
  • Reading age : 8 - 11 years
  • Grade level : 3 - 4
  • ***I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own***

Book Summary
"This empathetic read is also full of important themes and lessons for young readers bravery, how to overcome fears, and that mistakes don't have to define us." --School Library Journal

Told from Stella's perspective, this story is about a special dog who must find the courage to overcome her fears in order to help save a young girl with epilepsy.

Ever since she was a puppy, Stella was trained to use her powerful beagle nose to sniff out dangerous chemicals and help her handler keep people safe. But during a routine security inspection, Stella misses the scent of an explosive. The sound of the blast is loud and scary. Unable to go back to work because of her anxiety, Stella is retired as a working dog.

When a young girl name Cloe wants to adopt Stella, the beagle knows this is her last chance to prove her worth. But how? When Stella smells a strange chemical inside Cloe's body, a scent that surges just before the girl has a seizure, Stella's nose makes the connection. But how can Stella warn her new family without them thinking she's having an anxiety attack? How can she convince others that she can be a new kind of service dog and hopefully save Cloe's life?

Even dogs deserve a second chance.

My Review
Stella was such a touching story. I read this to my 2nd grade class. They absolutely loved this novel. I had 8 of my students buy their own copy before we'd even finished the novel in class.They could hardly wait every day until it was time to read from Stella. This group of kids loves animals, especially dogs. They were particularly fascinated with the fact that this story was told from Stella's point of view. Most had never read a story from the animal's perspective. As an adult, I even enjoyed hearing the story from Stella's POV. 

This story does have some sad elements where Stella's original "human" Connie was killed in an explosion at the airport. Stella's former job was to sniff out dangerous chemicals at the airport. Something went wrong and Connie's life is lost and Stella is left with emotional and physical wounds. Readers learn of this from Stella's memories and nothing graphic. The beauty of this story is how Stella overcomes her past fears but she finds a girl who believes in her. Chloe and Stella's relationship is so sweet. They bond immediately and Stella ends up being a huge part of Chloe's life too. I also love the message to kids that even though you make mistakes in your life you still can overcome them and be successful. 

I highly recommend this book to younger kids to read with a trusted adult and older kids and adults will love reading this too. 

Meet Author McCall Hoyle

McCall Hoyle lives in the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains with her husband, children, and an odd assortment of pets. She is a middle school librarian and teacher. When she's not reading, writing, or teaching, she's probably training one of many dogs. You can learn more about her at 

Purchase your copy of Stella

Art from Stella: drawn and colored by my 2nd Grade Class
Here is the art work done by some of my 2nd graders. They wanted to color pictures of some of their favorite scenes from the book. They did a fantastic job and
truly show the heart of this story and what it meant to them.

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Of Darkness And Light (Soli Hansen Mysteries #1) By Heidi Eljarbo: WWII Mystery Historical Fiction- Book Review


Product Details

  • Title:Of Darkness and Light
  • Author: Heidi Eljarbo
  • Series: Soli Hansen Mysteries #1 
  • Genre:  World War II Historical Fiction/Mystery
  • ASIN : B087SDLTL7
  • Publisher : Independently published (May 2, 2020)
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 261 pages
  • ISBN-13 : 979-8639681653

***I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own***

Book Summary

In this first book of a new historical mystery series, a young art historian faces a tough choice in German-occupied Norway.

“Artful prose and at a pace that makes for a can't-put-down, first-class literary voyage."–Melissa Dalton-Bradford, bestselling author of Global Mom

Oslo, 1944. Soli Hansen’s passion for art history is and always has been a way of life for her. While she spends her days working in an art shop, WWII is taking its toll on everyone. Apprehensive of the consequences, Soli avoids becoming entangled in the war resistance efforts. She closes her eyes in hopes the enemy will retreat and leave her beautiful country for good.

But when a woman is found dead in the alley alongside the art shop and a painting from the last auction goes missing, Soli is thrown into the thickest of the fray involving both Nazi art theft and the Norwegian resistance.

Once Soli finds her courage, there’s no turning back. Her personal life is turned upside-down with danger, lies, spying, and an incredible discovery.

In this dual timeline novel, Heidi Eljarbo paints a vivid picture of what people are willing to do in desperate times. With unforgettable characters and rich historical details, Of Darkness and Light will keep the reader mesmerized until the last satisfying page.

Perfect for fans of Kate Morton, Lucinda Riley, Katherine Neville, and Kate Mosse.

Praise for Of Darkness and Light

Interspersing love, hope, and courage, the participants are drawn together in mysterious paths.”–Pauline Isaksen, bestselling author of Dying for Justice

“Of Darkness and Light will reel you in and keep you hooked until the end.”–Mette Barfelt, bestselling author of The Solvik Series

My Review

Of Darkness and Light is a historical thriller set during WWII in occupied Norway. Lately, I have enjoyed reading novels set in WWII but in countries that the history of the German Occupation isn't as widely known.

 The other fascinating part of this novel was the art history. The main character Soli is an Art Historian working for a small art dealer in her town of Oslo. A murder takes place at her work and Soli finds herself wrapped up in the resistance movement. Soli is not sure who to trust, as she is trying to stay ahead of the Nazis as they're hunting down valuable works of art to give to Hitler.

This novel has a fascinating aspect as there is another story being told in a dual timeline. We learn about the origins of a missing piece of art and the artist who painted this piece in the 16th century, the famous Italian painter Caravaggio, and his love affair with Fabiola Ruber who posed for the painting. He led a rough life and it shows in his work.

This novel ends in a way that leaves everything open for the second Soli Hansen Mystery, The Other Cipher, that came out this past December. I can't wait to read what happens next as it left everything up in the air. This historical mystery will keep you enthralled until the last page.

           Read more about the Artist Caravaggio


                                                                       (c. 1571–1610)
                                                                 Biography Link

Meet Author Heidi Eljarbo

Heidi Eljarbo writes historical fiction. She grew up in a home filled with books and artwork and she never truly imagined she would do anything other than write and paint. She studied art, languages, and history, all of which have come in handy when working as a freelance writer, magazine journalist, and painter.

After living in Canada, six US states, Japan, Switzerland, and Austria, Heidi now calls Norway home. She and her husband have a total of nine children, thirteen grandchildren—so far—in addition to a bouncy Wheaten Terrier.
Their favorite retreat is a mountain cabin, where they hike in the summertime and ski the vast, white terrain during winter.
Heidi’s favorites are family, God's beautiful nature, and the word whimsical.

If you would like to know more, please visit:

Official Author Website:

Twitter: @HeidiEljarbo

Friday, March 26, 2021

Manor for Sale, Baron Included By Esther Hatch – Book Review Also: 2-Day Kindle Sale 99 cents March 26th and 27th 2021!


Product Details

  • Title: Manor for Sale, Baron Included
  • Author: Esther Hatch
  • Series: A Romance of Rank Book 1
  • Genre: Regency Rom-Com/Sweet Romance
  • Publication date : February 25, 2021
  • Language : English
  • File size : 645 KB
  • ***I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own***

Book Summary

She has everything Lord Farnsworth wants, including his manor.

Lord Farnsworth would rather rot in debtor’s prison than sell the one place that feels like home to him—his mother’s manor. That is, until he meets the woman who wants to buy it. Sally Duncan is beautiful, intelligent, and as rich as a baron—a rich baron, not a cash-strapped one like Lord Farnsworth. She’s the solution to every one of his financial problems and is bewitching to boot. All he needs to do is sell her his beloved manor and then charm her to the altar, and the manor will be his again. Simple, right?

But nothing is simple when Sally starts tearing apart his ancestral home and renovating it in a way no one would consider tasteful. She is wreaking havoc on everything, but he cannot give up on owning his mother’s estate again, nor can he imagine anyone but Sally as his wife.

And so he sticks with his plan.

What a horrible mistake.

***2 Day Kindle Sale 99 cents***

My Review

Manor for Sale, Baron Included  was such a fun novel. This book has you laughing throughout while reading. It's funny how things such as swimming in a pond fully clothed, an ugly vase, fish wallpaper, boxing lessons, and a dead squirrel can turn a regency romance into a Regency Rom-Com. Lord Farnsworth is not your typical Regency "Hero" and I kind of liked him that way. His sometimes bumbling actions and words made for some of my favorite parts in this novel. You fall in love with him pretty much from the start. 

Sally Duncan, also not your typical Regency "Heroine", is strong, determined, and successful. Sally is loyal and very protective of her younger sister. The harder she pushes Lord Farnsworth away, the more she finds him hanging around.

Honestly, this book has such an enjoyable and entertaining storyline that it's hard to put down. It was entirely nothing I was expecting but turned out to be everything I needed to read right now in my busy and hectic life. 

It's time for you to read this delightful Regency Rom-Com with the perfect blend of humor and clean romance.

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 

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

A Place to Belong: A Collection of 12 Heartwarming Novels with Animal Sidekicks : Happy Book Birthday! 99 Cent sale Until Sunday March 28th, 2021!


Product Details

  • Publisher : Partridge & Pear Press (March 23, 2021)
  • Publication date : March 23, 2021
  • Genre: Womens' Christian Fiction
  • Language : English
  • File size : 2488 KB

Collection Summary
Family and friends you can depend on, close-knit communities who embrace you, and the special animal companions that have a knack for changing lives and bringing us purpose…

A PLACE TO BELONG has them all, ready and waiting for you. Immerse yourself in this 12-book collection of stories about women who rose to the challenges life threw their way and emerged stronger because of it.

New York Times bestselling author Melissa Storm joins established and emerging talent in the genre of Women’s Fiction to bring you a heartwarming set of novels to entertain, inspire, and to show you the ones you love amidst its pages.

Because home isn’t a place. It’s the people (and the animal friends) who give life its purpose.

You can get 12 full novels, heartwarming & sweet. The box set will be 99 cents through Sunday. If you love animals as much as I do, you will want to get this collection! I bought mine today and I know you won't want to miss out on these novels either.
My review is coming soon!

***You can buy this collection at these retailers***

Monday, March 22, 2021

Refining The Debutante: A Regency Romance By Anneka R. Walker-Blog Tour Review, Excerpt from the novel, and Giveaway!


Product Details

  • Title: Refining The Debutante:
  • Author: Anneka R. Walker
  • Publisher : Covenant Communications, Inc. (March 2, 2021)
  • Genre: Regency Romance
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 264 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 1524416940
  • ***I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own***

Book Summary
A sweet, solid romance. -Publishers Weekly

Miss Miranda Bartley is in love with the Honorable Ethan Roderick, their engagement all but official. But as she basks in the success of her London Season, her joy is cut short when Ethan ends their courtship, claiming she is too insensitive. In the wake of her heartbreak, Miranda is dealt yet another blow, one that changes everything. In a harsh twist of fate, she quickly falls from Society darling to servant in her uncle's home.

Believing he will never see Miranda again, Ethan is shocked when he encounters her by accident. Even more surprising is her dramatic change; she is no longer the self-centered young woman he left behind. Her eyes are now open to the plight of poverty surrounding her, and Miranda has become every bit the lady Ethan once imagined her to be. As he helps the woman he once loved, their tattered relationship returns to familiarity. But Ethan is determined to protect his heart and begins a courtship with his neighbor, who is predictable and safe everything Miranda is not. Forced to perform a delicate dance, Miranda and Ethan must choose follow the rules of Society or the longing of their hearts.

My Review
Life is not always simple. Now and again I want to read a book that tends to turn more on the realistic side and Refining The Debutante does exactly that. 

This novel, heart-wrenching at times, brings a romance with it's ups and many downs. It also brings characters with amazing growth that drew me into their lives even more. Author Anneka Walker has a way of writing characters that may appear to be larger than life, then strips them down where we see their inner core. Going on this journey with Miranda and Ethan had me ride the highs and lows as they experienced them. The supporting cast of characters from Miranda's father and her uncle, to Ethan's sisters and his parents are all written brilliantly and go through many changes. As you end this novel you gain such satisfaction by the transformations that have taken place by the cast of characters. The romance is sweet and bitter sweet at times but oh, what an ending. 

All lovers of Regency Romance will appreciate reading Refining The Debutante with its many twists and turns and the excellent character development. Put this novel on your To-Read list today!

Meet Author Anneka R. Walker

Anneka Walker was raised by a librarian and an English teacher turned judge. After being fed a steady diet of books, she decided to learn about writing. The result was a bachelor's degree in English and History. When she isn't dreaming up a happy ending for a story, she's busy living her own together with her husband and adorable children.

Excerpt From Refining The Debutante
London, January 1816
What exactly was a man supposed to do in a dressmaker’s shop? His mother’s headache, brought on by his sister Jane’s sour temper, necessitated an early return home. This left Ethan to retrieve Jane from her appointment.

He suddenly felt envious of his youngest sister, who remained home at their country estate, and even his younger brother, who was at school. Ethan would rather be anywhere else. With a fortifying breath, he entered the narrow building of the most popular modiste in London and removed his beaver hat. He grimaced at the rainbow of colors before him. His sister had better hurry. To say he was out of his element, with the crowded bolts of fabric and the framed sketches of women’s attire, was an understatement.

Jane was in the adjoining room, standing on a raised platform. Her back was to him, but through the doorway, he could see her staring at the reflection of her new gown in the long gilded mirror in front of her. He stepped closer to gain her attention but paused when he saw her expression. She looked as if she might cry. Was this dress the reason for his mother’s headache? Eyeing the gown, he wondered what part offended his sister. It seemed nice enough to him.

The shop’s front door opened to let in a woman. He shuffled to the side of the small vestibule and dipped his head in a polite greeting. The woman curtsied and smiled up at him. Ethan did not easily get his head turned by a pretty face, but when she boldly met his gaze, he could not look away. She wore a jonquil-yellow redingote with a brown velvet collar. She did not remove her heavily trimmed bonnet, but it did little to hide the goldenbrown curls framing her large eyes, small nose, and full lips. While he had no intention of speaking to her, his mouth opened of its own accord. No sound emitted, and he floundered for a moment to close it again.

She looked away before he did, breaking the strange spell her presence had cast over him. He was still thinking about his reaction to this perfect stranger when she spoke in a near-whisper. “You really ought to tell your wife how wonderful she looks in her new gown.” “Pardon?” Ethan stole a glance at the stranger. Had he imagined her soft words? “It would do her a world of good,” she whispered again. He looked at her. “Are you speaking to me?” Her eyes snapped to meet his. “Who else would I be speaking to?” She motioned to Jane. “Look at your darling little wife. She is terribly insecure. She needs you to buoy her spirits with a compliment or two.”

He raised his brows in disbelief. Sisters did not care what brothers thought of their dresses, and he was nobody’s husband. “You are mistaken.” “There is no mistake. Don’t be hurt that you cannot see what I can. A woman senses this sort of thing.” She gave him a look of pity. “It isn’t your fault. You were born a man; it is harder for you. But I do not mind helping. Go ahead. Look at her. See the way she stares in the looking glass? See the worry line between her eyes?” She leaned near him as if doing so would allow him to see what she did.He had never met a more impertinent woman. “Why would she be worried? That dress cost a fortune.”

A sigh emitted from her mouth. “She needs to feel beautiful. Only you can do that for her. Tell her.” “I don’t think—” “Do it. Go on.” Why had he agreed to come here in the first place? He cleared his throat, anxious for the woman to let him be, and stepped across the threshold of the adjoining room. “You look well,” he said to Jane. “What are you doing in here?” Jane swiveled on the platform to face him. She batted at a dark ringlet by her face, then dropped her hands to her hips. “Wait outside. I am embarrassed you would speak to me in such a place.” He shuffled backward.
The strange woman tsked her tongue. “You did a very poor job of it. A husband must learn the best way to compliment his wife. Let me demonstrate." The woman stepped past him. She looked back at him once, shaking her head as if he’d disappointed her, then waltzed into the room as if she were the proprietor. “Excuse me, but I mustn’t stay silent for another moment.” “What is it?” Jane asked.

“It’s your dress. It’s exquisite. I must have an exact replica.” “You? But why? Your dress is far superior.” “Nonsense. You can barely see it beneath my redingote. You are far too kind.” The woman put her hand out as if she were stroking the fabric of Jane’s dress but was not actually close enough to touch it. “This muslin is some of the finest I’ve seen so far this Season. You are a natural beauty, but do not underestimate the power of a beautiful gown.”

“You think so? It is rather pretty, I guess. I am not sure about the fit.” The woman looked her over as if she were the mantua-maker. “You’re right. Madame Gillespie? A half inch at each shoulder.” The dressmaker pinned the material in the place where the stranger told her to. “Your shoulders are slender indeed. What do you think now?” She turned to Madame Gillespie before Jane could answer. “Fetch that gold shawl on the table.” The woman accepted it and draped it over Jane’s shoulders. “Stunning. Wear it a little lower. Just there.”

Then she crossed to a table and selected a green feather. She placed it in Jane’s hair. “Sometimes the little accents give a dress greater personality.” Ethan stared. A little charm made the personality of a woman shine too. He turned his gaze from the vexing but delightful woman to see Jane’s reaction. His sister’s cheeks flushed with pleasure. “It’s far lovelier with your adaptions. I never would have been able to put this combination together.” Jane turned and preened in front of the mirror. “Thank you.” Madame Gillespie clasped her hands together in front of her chest. “Miss Bartley has excellent taste. She sometimes sketches designs inspired by her travels.” “I am most impressed,” Jane said.

Ethan was too. Miss Bartley. He would remember her name. “I am happy to share one with you, although my skills pale compared to Madame Gillespie’s,” Miss Bartley said. She pulled out a sketch from her reticule. “I happen to have one I did just this morning. What do you think of this? Oh, forgive me; I don’t even know your name.” “This is Miss Roderick,” Madame Gillespie supplied. “May I?” Jane took the picture and gasped. “It’s like a Grecian princess.”

“I think an English lady like yourself could do it justice, too. It’s yours. I believe a soft blue would do well with your coloring.” “Thank you, Miss Bartley,” Jane cooed. Miss Bartley smiled at her and stepped back into the vestibule. Jane returned to studying her reflection in the mirror, her eyes sparkling. Ethan chuckled. “You’ve made my sister feel very beautiful.” “She seems most deserving.” “You were right about her insecurity and the worry lines on her face. You have done something in minutes that my family hasn’t managed in two years.”

“Well, I—” Her eyes widened. “Your sister? She is not your wife?” “Jane is my sister. But don’t worry. When I marry, I will be sure to compliment my wife just as you’ve instructed. I will insist on having an exact replica of her dress made to fit me. I will select her shawls and feathers. And I will sketch all the designs for her gowns.” “Oh . . .” She sputtered. “That would be most extraordinary of you.” She took a step backward.

 “Perhaps I should return for my appointment when your sister is through.” “I’m disappointed. You cannot be finished instructing me on my behavior already,” he teased. “Instructing?” She looked perfectly bewildered—as innocent as a dove. “Why would I do that? We have not even been properly introduced. I wouldn’t dare speak with a stranger.” He bit back a grin. “Heaven forbid.” “My thoughts exactly.”

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