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Book Review: Entrapped by Barbara Kyle November 15, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Books, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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Get your copy of Entrapped on Kindle!

Description:

Set in Alberta, Canada, Entrapped is the story of Liv Gardner, an ambitious young oil executive intent on stopping farmer Tom Wainwright who is sabotaging her rigs after a spill of lethal “sour” gas poisoned his wife. Desperate to save the company she built, Liv plants evidence to frame Tom. But when the evidence is used to indict him for a murder he didn’t commit, only Liv can save him.

My Review:

Entrapped by Barbara Kyle is the thrilling tale about the lengths people will go to in order to preserve the most important things in their lives. What things are considered important enough to risk everything? Family and friends? Business and financial success? Maybe even love? Either way, when you have two groups waging war against each other, sacrifices have to be made.

Olivia had everything she dreamed of. After having a not so happy childhood, Liv is given the opportunity of a life time when she goes into a business partnership with brothers Mickey and Paul. She is currently CEO of the successful Falcon oil company and things can only go up. So when someone starts sabotaging their company, she makes it her mission to find out who is responsible. Going undercover was easy but what she learned in the process may change her outlook on life.

Tom Wainwright is just a man who wants to be left alone to tend his farm and raise his daughter. So when sour gas threatens his livestock causing numerous problems, he sets out to protect his land and everything his family has worked to achieve. After being rejected by all formal means, Tom takes matters into his own hands, using his hate as a driving force. Will his hate consume him before it is too late or will his enemy be a beacon of hope?

Barbara Kyle has written a story that will keep you reading until the end. Since true events were used for inspiration, it is hard not to feel for the characters in this story and it is sure to make you think about both sides involved. As mentioned in the book, everyone has a price, and reading Entrapped is sure to make you stop and think about what your price might be.

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Jaidis

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Book Review: Relic Defender: Key of Solomon October 27, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Books, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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6 comments

Get your copy of Relic Defender: Key of Solomon on Kindle!

Synopsis:

Anthropology PhD candidate Lexi Harrison never bares it all when she belly dances for a strip club crowd. She doesn’t have to—she’s that good. Every performance earns money toward her degree, and restores the sense of power that her painful childhood ripped away.

Something is different about tonight. A man whose silver gaze seems to touch her skin beneath her veils. When a rowdy customer crosses the line, he comes to her rescue with the speed of a falcon—complete with wings.

Mikos Tyomni has never seen anyone dance the raqs sharqi like Lexi. Trust his tormentor, Archangel Michael, to put him in close contact with the cause of his downfall: a mortal woman. Particularly this mortal woman. The Defender. He has only thirty days to win her trust before Hell’s deadliest demons attempt the mother of all prison breaks.

No matter how sexy the messenger is, Lexi’s career plans don’t include some crazy idea that she’s the last line of defense against the forces of evil. Until her university mentor’s murder leaves her holding the key to Hell. And fighting a losing battle against a passion with the unholy power to bring down Heaven…

My Review:

Lexi has everything all planned out. Working hard to obtain her college degree by day and belly dancing by night, Lexi is determined to stay on the path she wants. With her heart locked up tight, nothing will make her feel again. Through a series of unfortunate events during her childhood, including the loss of her parents, Lexi has lost all faith in herself and humanity as a whole.

Mikos is an angel with a past. After falling from grace, he has worked non-stop to get back in the good graces of the powers that be. Just one task remains for him to complete and then his desire to return to heaven will be granted. What should be an easy task, makes a turn for the worst when he must convince Lexi that she is the Defender; a heritage that has been bestowed upon her by her deceased parents. Not only is Lexi head strong, stubborn and unwilling to bend, but she has an irresistible pull that Mikos can not ignore. Allowing himself to be with Lexi is not only forbidden but will ruin everything he has worked so hard to obtain.

In the majority of books that I have read that focus on the battle between good and evil…there are only angels against demons. God versus Satan. Ms. Knight takes the path least traveled and adds various aspects from Pagan spiritual paths and Mythology into the pages of Relic Defender: Key of Solomon. It was so refreshing to read about various aspects of other spiritual paths rather than focusing solely on main-stream religions.

If you like books that contain steamy angels and sexual tension that radiates off of the pages…I highly recommend Relic Defender: Key of Solomon by Cassiel Knight!

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Jaidis

Book Review: Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen October 12, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Book Tours, Books, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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Get your copy of Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen today!

Synopsis:

Shopping trips to discover trends, cabinet styles, counter top materials, appliances and plumbing fixtures are only the opening skirmishes when planning a kitchen renovation battle plan. Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen is the ultimate step-by-step, behind-the-scenes manual to remodel a kitchen. This must-have manifesto is loaded with “before” and “after” photos, drawings, questionnaires, lists, and “Tales from the Trenches” from the author’s own jobsites. Packed with practical, no-nonsense advice, checklists and proven recommendations, the book will help the novice and seasoned renovator alike plot a logical course of action before jumping into the fray. Learn how to: • determine how long it should take • de-code the design process • establish a budget • hire a contractor • ask the right questions when shopping for cabinetry, appliances and materials and so much more. Armed with this renovation road map, homeowners can plan their strategy so they won’t just survive, they’ll save time, money, sanity and win the renovation war! Robin Siegerman is a Registered Interior Designer and international, award-winning, Certified Kitchen Designer. With almost 20 years experience designing and managing home renovations, she sets a new standard for the kitchen renovation guide with Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen. Her columns, articles and projects have been featured in newspapers, magazines and coffee table books, she is a regularly featured designer on various HGTV shows and is a popular speaker at trade and home shows.

My Review:

Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen – Design and Remodel Your Kitchen Without Losing Your Wallet, Your Mind and Your Spouse by Robin Siegerman is a breath of fresh air for anyone wanting to remodel their kitchen! As someone who hopes to remodel her kitchen someday, I have a better understanding of what all goes into a remodel and what to prepare for. There are so many things that Robin talks about in her book that I never would have considered and now that I know about them, I can better prepare and plan. If I jumped into a kitchen remodel, I would have been stuck with extra costs and time added to my project because I simply did not know what all a remodel takes.

For instance, Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen pointed out that apparently I have been living in the dark ages. Did you know that they make microwave drawers?

(Dacor Millennia Microwave In-A-Drawer)

I didn’t! As someone with a very small kitchen, I am always being annoyed by the space that my microwave takes up on the counter. Robin suggests that for kitchens with little counter space, to consider using a microwave drawer. They are built underneath the counter as a drawer and are a much better way to manage the space in the kitchen!

Robin also talks about topics that we wouldn’t normally think of such as clean-up. She points out that once the remodel is complete that you are most likely to be excited to move into your new kitchen and start putting things away. She advises against this and also suggests that you hire a professional cleaning crew to come in and make sure everything has been cleaned properly. I never would have thought to have a crew come in and do the clean-up, just taking it upon myself to clean up afterwards. During the remodel, dust settles on everything and can cause health hazards later on if not properly cleaned. Be sure to clean your new kitchen twice, remembering to clean the vents and air ducts as well to prevent future problems!

If you are thinking about a kitchen remodel, I highly recommend you read Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen – Design and Remodel Your Kitchen Without Losing Your Wallet, Your Mind and Your Spouse by Robin Siegerman before you begin any kitchen remodel projects to avoid extra cost, problems and frustration.

My Rating:

Be sure to check out my interview HERE with Award-Winning Interior Designer Robin Siegerman and enter to win your own copy of Renovation Bootcamp: Kitchen – Design and Remodel Your Kitchen Without Losing Your Wallet, Your Mind or Your Spouse.

Happy Reading,

Jaidis

Book Review: The Arranger September 12, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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Get your copy of The Arranger: A Futuristic Thriller on Kindle!!

Description:

The year is 2023 and ex-detective Lara Evans is working as a freelance paramedic in a bleak new world. She responds to an emergency call and is nearly killed when a shooter flees the home. Inside she finds the federal employment commissioner wounded, but she’s able to save his life.

The next day Lara leaves for the Gauntlet—a national competition of intense physical and mental challenges with high stakes for her home state. She spots the assailant lurking at the arena and soon after, she lands in deep trouble. Who is the mysterious killer and what is motivating him? Can Lara stop him, stay alive, and win the Gauntlet?

My Review:

The Arranger by L.J. Sellers is a suspenseful tale of strength, determination and the ultimate fight for survival. Lara Evans has a dark cloud of guilt that looms over her: a constant reminder of her past actions. She has a lot to prove, mostly to herself, and so she sets out with a mission to win The Gauntlet. The Gauntlet is a grueling competition that tests the best of the best from each state. The winner will not only receive some prize money but their home state will receive funds that are desperately needed in the down economy.

As if the mental and physical challenges weren’t enough, Lara is thrown in the spotlight when her roommate is found dead. Trying to keep her mind on winning The Gauntlet, Lara now must try to find who killed her roommate and get rid of the murder charges hanging over her head.

L.J. Sellers does a fantastic job at keeping the reader in suspense. I couldn’t stop reading The Arranger once I started because not only was I curious as to how Lara would do in The Gauntlet, but I wanted to learn more about the other characters as well. With a dash of potential romance thrown in, The Arranger is most certainly a must read!

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Jaidis

Book Review: In My Dreams August 25, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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Get your copy of In My Dreams on Kindle!!

Description:

It was happening again. The dreams. The nightmares. It was something seventeen year-old Elizabeth “Lizzy” Hayes thought she’d outgrown; dreams that would come true; detailed premonitions of how people would die. This time she dreams about her boyfriend, Michael Young, and soon discovers that he’s been found… dead.

Michael hasn’t crossed over because he was murdered, and now his murderer is coming for Lizzy. His spirit won’t rest until she is safe, and as a newbie spirit, the easiest way for him to make contact is through Lizzy’s dreams. When she dreams, it’s as if he hasn’t died.

Lizzy must learn to pull on her inner strength to survive horrifying events. Meanwhile, in the spirit world, Michael learns everything he can about his supernatural gifts to help. But will it be enough to save her?

My Review:

In My Dreams by Cameo Renae is an absolute must read! We start off meeting Lizzy Hayes, who is currently waiting for her boyfriend to pick her up for a special date. But instead of Michael showing up, she receives a phone call with the sad news that Michael has been in a car accident. Lizzy’s world is turned upside down as she struggles with finding out the truth and trying to survive without her soulmate.

I found myself tearing up throughout the book as the heart breaking pain rolled off of the pages in waves. But not only pain and suffering are felt, as this is a true love story about a love that will last forever, even in death. The reader will experience the sadness, love, joy, courage and determination of each character involved.

There really isn’t anything more that I can say that expresses how much I enjoyed In My Dreams so do yourself a favor and get your own copy today. I know I’ll be getting a print copy as well to put on my bookshelf because I will be reading it again.

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Jaidis

Book Review: Where the Rain is Made August 13, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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3 comments

Get your copy of Where the Rain is Made on Kindle!!

Description:

A decadent-looking savage has captured Francesca DuVall and her brother, Marsh. Now she must spend every waking moment planning an escape from the camp of the brutal savages. What she doesn’t count on is the powerful draw of desire interfering with her scheme.

Ethan Gray is a curator at a national museum in Washington, D.C. . . . most of the time. But when he travels through time to help his beloved People, he becomes Meko, leader of the most revered and feared tribe of the plains, the Cheyenne Dog Soldiers.

Their worlds are decades apart, yet Meko can’t resist the dark beauty he kidnapped during a raid. He has many battles to fight, but none more crucial than capturing Cesca’s heart forever.

My Review:

Where the Rain is Made by Keta Diablo is a hot and spicy romance novel soaked in history and mysticism, which immediately gripped my attention and had me anticipating the turn of each page until the very end! I admit I’m a sucker for a good love story, but Where the Rain is Made was much more than a sappy tale of star-crossed lovers with an exciting sex scene or two. This book is filled with love and hate, life and death, and choices not one of us would ever want to make.

Ethan Gray was an Assistant Curator for one of the most admirable museums in the country. He worked with Native American artifacts, providing the museum identification and history of each piece along with stories about the people and their ways. Being a Cheyenne he grew up being told the tales of his ancestors lifestyles and traditions. But he had also lived and breathed this lifestyle, just as they had so many years ago. Ethan was a time wanderer. The Cheyenne Sacred Council had sought out Ethan to aid them in setting things right with the past, sending him back in time to watch over his people and lead them safely and fiercely through their hardships. He had successfully completed his missions time after time, never faltering from the sacred Council’s plan, but this time would be different. She would be there, and she would change everything.

Mr. Duvall had caught himself a bit of the gold fever and decided to move his family, daughter Francesca and son Marshall, from the civilized comforts of New York city to the untamed plains of Colorado. This was not the white man’s land but that didn’t stop them from stealing it away, ravaging through the native’s villages destroying their livelihood and annihilating the people. The Cheyenne were left no choice but to defend themselves, fighting fire with fire they attacked the white man with full force. Soon Francesca’s world would be torn apart as she and her brother were taken captive by the Cheyenne dog soldiers. Why had their lives been spared? They were of no use to these cold and brutal savages yet they were shown mercy and brought to live among the people in their village. As much as Cesca struggled with her new way of living, she couldn’t fight the heavy desire she felt whenever she looked upon or even thought of I Am The Wind. The connection they shared was intense and went beyond the lustful thoughts that constantly ran through both of their minds. There was no going back now.

I highly recommend this book! The tension between the two main characters was incredible and had me craving the pages to come! There was so much emotion in this story and I sincerely felt for each of the characters and what they had been through. I am hoping and wishing there will be a sequel soon!! Loved Where the Rain is Made!

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Hazel O’Shea

Book Review: Paying the Piper August 6, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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Get your copy of Paying The Piper on Kindle!!

Description:

The Piper is the Bay Area’s infamous child kidnapper. When the Piper selected crime reporter, Scott Fleetwood, to report on his latest child kidnapping, Scott thought he had the world in his grasp, but he held nothing. Scott had been duped by a wannabe. By the time the FBI exposed the hoaxer, time had run out, leaving the real Piper only one course of action—to kill the child. With a murder added to his résumé, the Piper vanished leaving Scott to take blame from the public and the investigating FBI agent, Tom Sheils. But now, eight years later, the Piper’s back, with very specific targets in mind—Scott’s young children. Scott can have his children back as long as he can pay the ransom. The hard part is that ransom isn’t measured in dollars, but in blood.

Some debts can’t be repaid…

My Review:

If you’re looking to get pulled in and pumped up by a truly kick-ass suspense novel, then this book is for you! Simon Wood’s Paying the Piper is a pure adrenaline rush that will have you hanging by the edge of your seat while clawing at your heartstrings. Mr. Wood tells the tale of a parent’s worst nightmare, the kidnapping of a child and the unrelenting attempts to get them back! The excitement begins as soon as you open the book, the story moving along at a swift and thrilling pace. The storyline is fantastic and the characters are complex and diverse. I saw and felt this novel come to life as I’m sure many readers have and will!

Right off the bat we are introduced to Scott Fleetwood, a crime reporter for the Independent, as he races his way across town to his children’s elementary school. His wife had just called with horrible, life-altering news…their son had been kidnapped! Every parent hopes and prays for their children to be kept safe from such a tragedy, but Scott had almost expected it. Just eight years ago Scott had made a terrible mistake and put publicity and a good story above bringing down the bad guy. Scott believed the man on the phone was The Piper, a serial kidnapper contacting him personally to tell his story. This was huge, or it would’ve been had he really been speaking with The Piper. Scott soon realized he had been duped when the area’s highly feared kidnapper became a cold-blooded killer, showing the F.B.I., the news and Scott that they had made a grave mistake in ignoring his demands. A young boy had been killed and Scott has been blamed by all for his death. Now, after eight years his children were being used as pawns in this sick and vengeful game that The Piper had waited long enough to play. Scott wanted his children back and was willing to get them no matter the cost. It was time to pay The Piper.

I highly recommend reading this book to just about anyone! I was completely engaged in this story from the beginning and found myself emotionally vested in the main character’s course to get his kids back. There were twists and turns I never saw coming, keeping the storyline fresh and invigorating! Loved this book!

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Hazel O’Shea

Book Review: Unleashed July 21, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Jaidis Shaw Reviews.
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Get your copy of Unleashed (A Sydney Rye Novel) on Kindle!!

Description:

Joy Humbolt is not a huge fan of people and after getting fired from her latest stint as a barista she is becoming dangerously close to unemployable. So when Charlene Miller offers Joy her dog-walking business on the exclusive Upper East Side of Manhattan, Joy is happy to accept, despite a suspiciously quick transaction. However, when Joy discovers one of her clients murdered and Charlene gone, she becomes caught up in the drama and danger of her new client’s lives.

With the help of a rogue Police Detective Joy enters her clients sphere of power and influence searching for the killer. Usually a loner, Joy is disturbed by how much she likes it in their world. These people make the rules but are not bound by them. Joy realizes too late that only one kind of justice makes it this far uptown: vigilante. When Joy let’s go of  what little respect she had for the human race she become unstoppable, unleashed, and is reborn Sydney Rye.

My Review:

Unleashed is the page turning debut novel by Emily Kimelman. The main character Joy Humbolt,  who recently broke up with her boyfriend and lost her job, makes the rushed decision to adopt a dog from the pound for company. Little did she know that adopting the large husky mix named Blue would change her life forever.

Soon a dog walking business is thrown in her lap and she decides to give it a shot since there is a lot of money to be made. On her first day learning the ropes of being a professional dog walker, her world is thrown for a loop when the dog she is walking discovers a dead body. Joy is quickly thrown into a world she never knew existed where things aren’t always what they appear to be.

The super sexy, self-confident Declan introduces Joy to a hidden world of the rich, powerful and greedy. While she tries to uncover who murdered her boss, she will learn just how far some people will go for money but more importantly, how far she is willing to go to protect her family.

Detective Mulberry is a great detective who will stop at nothing to solve a crime, even if that means throwing the rule book out of the window and doing things his way. When he finds himself thrown off of the case, he must learn to trust Joy and help her solve the murder before more people end up being a victim.

I really enjoyed the writing style of Ms. Kimelman. She told an intriguing tale that kept me wanting to know what happened next. The only thing I wish had been different is how the relationship with Declan played out in the end. It felt rushed and unfinished to me. I would still recommend everyone read Unleashed.

My Rating:

A copy of Unleashed was provided to me from Nurture Your Books in exchange for my honest review. No other compensation was received for my review.

Book Review: Stir Until Thoroughly Confused July 21, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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Get your copy of Stir Until Thoroughly Confused on Kindle!!

Description:

Mary’s given up everything, including an unsatisfying marriage, to become a chef. But the career comes with a side dish: Kegan, her sexy but controlling new boss.

They’re soon in a relationship, and in all-too-frequent arguments, and when it becomes clear they can’t work together and be together Mary faces a dilemma: keep her dream job or her dream man?

My Review:

Stir Until Thoroughly Confused by Heather Wardell is a fabulous story about self discovery, determination, and love. So many of us have sacrificed our dreams while putting those of the ones we love, or loved, above our own. While a noble and caring thing to do, it’s not always the right thing to do and we’re left with a shattered picture of what we thought this life of ours would be. What do I do? Where do I go? How could I possibly start over? Mary had asked herself these same questions time and time again. She had always wanted to enroll at the Culinary Institute but her husband Charles had other plans. He needed to finish schooling so Mary did what she had to do in order to make that happen. She could always save up and try again, couldn’t she? She soon found out that her goals played no role in the plans Charles had made for them. The plans he made for her. It was then that she knew she had to leave, and that’s just what she did!

Toronto was a new world to Mary and she couldn’t have been happier about that! This was her life and she was going to live it her way. She set her sights on Steel, the area’s most popular restaurant and was determined to get what she had wanted for so very long. Though she soon discovered she wanted much more than to be a top chef, she wanted Kegan Underwood. Kegan was tall, dark and handsome. He knew what he wanted, how he wanted it and how to get it done. Women fell for him daily but getting them to stay by his side and tolerate his controlling and passionate nature was just about impossible. Even knowing this, Mary couldn’t help but be drawn to him and he to Mary. Mary’s career meant everything to her and she wasn’t about to risk it, but what if she didn’t have to? Could they make this work and both find what they had been searching for so very long.

Heather Wardell did a wonderful job grabbing the reader’s attention and creating an emotional investment with the characters and storyline. This book had my attention from the start and I was easily able to identify with Mary and what she had gone through. I’m sure most readers will, with Mary or any of the other well-developed characters. The relationship that forms between the two main characters is exciting and realistic. I found myself being a part of it and feeling that tension right along with them! This was a fantastic read and I highly recommend it!

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

Hazel O’Shea

Book Review: Veronica in Paris July 15, 2011

Posted by Jaidis in 5 Tree Reviews, Book Reviews, Hazel O'Shea Reviews.
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Get your copy of Veronica in Paris on Kindle!

Description:

Veronica Barry travels to Paris for her junior year abroad. She befriends a British student in her language class, but develops a crush on her friend’s French lover. On New Year’s eve, Veronica must choose between loyalty and love.

My Review:

Veronica in Paris by Sophia Martin is the charming and heart fluttering novella introducing us to Miss Veronica Barry. A junior in college, Veronica has set out to spend a semester abroad in the city of love, Paris, France! She finds herself surrounded by stunning runway fashion, exquisite artwork and delightfully quaint cafes around every corner. As nervous as she was to travel so far from home and stay with her unknown exchange “family”, she was more excited than anything! This was a dream come true. A dazzling, Audrey Hepburn inspired dream that she was going to enjoy until the very moment she had to leave.

Madame Pauline Richard was allowing Veronica to stay in her home while she absorbed and engaged in the Parisian culture. She had a hard exterior, rarely smiling or showing any signs of excitement, but Veronica knew there was a fire inside of Madame Richard. A glimmer of warmth she saw whenever the two would discuss the city’s history, sites to see and the fellow students Veronica was steadily becoming friends with. She quickly grew close with a young woman from London, Felicia Davies. Felicia was outgoing, quick-witted and very fashionable. She was also dating a man Veronica couldn’t keep her eyes or mind off of! Eric was certainly hard to resist, with his gorgeous looks and extreme charisma. Yes, he was Felicia’s boyfriend and that was enough for Veronica to keep her distance, but would that be enough for Eric to keep his?

This story was very cute and certainly caught my interest. The story was paced quickly but it didn’t feel rushed or vague. Sophia does a fantastic job showing the reader Veronica’s experience and leaves you wanting to pick up the first novel in the Veronica Barry series, The River and the Roses. If you’re looking for something fun, flirty and quick to read, I definitely recommend Veronica in Paris!

My Rating:

Happy Reading,

~Hazel O’Shea