Weekly Wrap Up: September 22nd through September 28th 2019

Clicking on titles under Books I’ve ReadNetGalley Requests,and Author/Publisher Requests will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on titles under Books with Pending Reviews and Books with Published Reviews will take you to Amazon.

Clicking on titles Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz will take you to that specific blog post.

Clicking on links under Giveaways I’ve Entered will take you to that giveaway

Clicking on the links under Weekly Posts will take you to that specific blog post.


Books I’ve Read:

Demons at War

Shantallow

The Tattooist of Auschwitz (no review)

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein (no review)

What Rose Forgot


Books with Pending Reviews:

The Fixer Upper—review coming September 23rd


Books with Published Reviews:

The Orchid Throne—Review Here

An Unorthodox Match—Review Here

Steel Crow Saga—Review Here

Rise of the Dragon—Review Here


NetGalley Requests:

Win Big—Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

Weekend Fling—Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

The God Game (SMP)


Author/Publisher/Blog Tour Review Requests:

My Best Friend’s Sister—Author Request (not on Goodreads yet)

The Glittering Hour—SMP, Thomas Dunne Books

Into the Inferno—KCS Publishing (not on Goodreads yet)

BOINK’D—French Kiss Press/Author Request


Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz:

Panic, Frenzy, Lunacy—Cover Reveal

Past This Point—Book Blitz

Fearless—Book Blitz

Tallowwood—Book Blitz

The Orchid Throne—Blog Tour

Rescuing Lord Roxwaithe—Cover Reveal

The Aquarathi Series—Book Blitz

Cabin 1—Book Blitz

Alec—Book Blitz

Night Latch—Cover Reveal

Not Suitable for Work—Book Blitz

Wrecking Christmas—Book Blitz

Angelbound and Beholder Special Edition Box Set—Book Blitz

Sinful Truth—Cover Reveal

Conjuring Wrath—Book Blitz

Fate of Imperium Box Set: Books 1-3—Book Blitz

The Fixer Upper—Blog Tour

A Little Sin—Book Blitz

Alex—Book Blitz


Giveaways I’ve Entered:


Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Catch Up Sunday

Top Ten Tuesday

WWW Wednesday

Theme Thursday

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An Unorthodox Match by Naomi Ragen

An Unorthodox Match: A Novel by [Ragen, Naomi]

4 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Date of publication: September 24th, 2019

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Religion

Where you can find An Unorthodox Match: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

California girl Lola has her life all set up: business degree, handsome fiancé, fast track career, when suddenly, without warning, everything tragically implodes. After years fruitlessly searching for love, marriage, and children, she decides to take the radical step of seeking spirituality and meaning far outside the parameters of modern life in the insular, ultraorthodox enclave of Boro Park, Brooklyn. There, fate brings her to the dysfunctional home of newly-widowed Jacob, a devout Torah scholar, whose life is also in turmoil, and whose small children are aching for the kindness of a womanly touch.

While her mother direly predicts she is ruining her life, enslaving herself to a community that is a misogynistic religious cult, Lola’s heart tells her something far more complicated. But it is the shocking and unexpected messages of her new community itself which will finally force her into a deeper understanding of the real choices she now faces and which will ultimately decide her fate.

An Unorthodox March is a powerful and moving novel of faith, love, and acceptance, from Naomi Ragen, the international bestselling author of The Devil in Jerusalem.


First Line:

Leah Howard sat there facing Rabbi Weintraub’s empty chair, rehearsing what she was going to say to him.

An Unorthodox match by Naomi Ragen

My Review

When I got the invite to review An Unorthodox Match, I almost didn’t accept it. I do not read books that are straight, religious books, even those that are masked as women’s fiction. But the blurb caught my attention, and I decided to read An Unorthodox Match.

Having grown up in a community that was Jewish, I assumed that I knew a lot about the religion. I always knew that there was an Ultraorthodox part of the religion but knew nothing about it. Then I read An Unorthodox Match, and my mind was blown. There was so much that I didn’t know and so much that took me by surprise. It was learning about the Ultraorthodox religion that made this book for me.

I liked Lola/Leah. But I do wish that her backstory had been told better. I got a little irritated because her backstory was broken up. The author did say at the beginning of the book that Lola/Leah had been through a lot as a child and an adult. But after that, it was fragmented and drove me nuts. It wasn’t until that important scene with Yaakov at the end of the book that everything was put together in chronological order. I also thought that Lola/Leah was too lenient with Shaindele after what that twit put her through. But I will get to that in a little bit.

I liked Yaakov and felt awful for him. I guessed what had happened to his first wife early in the book. His grief and guilt came off the page. I wanted to hug him and tell him it wasn’t his fault. I liked that the author made him human. He had three children at home who he needed to take care or and provide for. He did what he had to, which included giving up his studies, to care for them. That included going to someone to help find a wife (which is done in this religion).

I do have to mention Shaindele, Yaakov’s oldest daughter because she played a massive part in Lola/Leah and Yaakov’s relationship. I didn’t like her. I found her behavior disrespectful throughout the book. I did feel bad for her. Losing her mother the way that she did and not being told the truth about how/why she died was traumatic. But it did not excuse how she treated the younger children or Lola/Leah. Which is why I was surprised that Lola/Leah talked Yaakov out of doing what he wanted to do.

I did find how hard it was for Lola/Leah to be accepted into the enclave fascinating. I had no idea that it was so hard for converts to be accepted into the Ultraorthodox enclaves. I had no clue that even if they did marry, that their children would never be accepted. The prejudices were outlined perfectly in this book. There was a point where I thought Lola/Leah was fighting a losing battle.

The romance angle of the book wasn’t up and in your face. Lola/Leah and Yaakov had to overcome a lot even to meet. But once they met, I could see the attraction. What I liked also is that there was zero sex. No kissing. Per the religion, Yaakov couldn’t even touch Lola/Leah. So kissing her was out of the question. I loved watching their romance develop without that. It was refreshing.

The end of An Unorthodox Match pulled at my heartstrings. It was a typical HEA that made me tear up. What I appreciated was that the author included a glossary with all the Jewish and Yiddish terms that were used in the book. I was getting a bit frustrated and ended up googling 90% of those terms. I wish I had known about it earlier. It would have saved me a whole lot of frustration.


I would give An Unorthodox Match an Adult rating. There is sex. There is mild language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread An Unorthodox Match.  I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Weekly Wrap Up: July 7th through July 13th, 2019

Clicking on titles under Books I’ve ReadNetGalley Haul,and Email Haul will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on titles under Books with Pending Reviews and Books with Published Reviews will take you to Amazon.

Clicking on titles Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz will take you to that specific blog post.

Clicking on links under Giveaways I’ve Entered will take you to that giveaway

Clicking on the titles under Freebies I Scored will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on the links under Weekly Posts will take you to that specific blog post.


Books I’ve Read:

Nocturne in Ashes

The Other Brother

Bending the Rules

Red Dawn Rising

Twenty-one Truths About Love

Letters From Angels


Books with pending reviews:

Twenty-one Truths About Love—review coming November 19th, 2019

Magic Heist—review coming July 10th, 2019

An Unorthodox Match—review coming September 24th, 2019


Books with published reviews:

Magic Heist-–review here

Bethlehem—review here

Letters From Angels—review here

The Stories You Tell—review here


NetGalley Haul:

I Wanna Sext You Up

This Earl of Mine


Email Haul:

The Other Brother


Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz:

Stx and Stone—Cover Reveal

Magic Heist—Blog Tour

Giveaways I’ve Entered:

Life is Short and The You Die—Goodreads Giveaway

A Song for a New Day—Read It Forward

Project Duchess—Kensington Publishing

Lisa Jackson Bundle—Kensington Publishing


Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Freebie Sunday

Music Monday

Top Ten Tuesday

WWW Wednesday

Theme Thursday

Weekly Wrap Up: June 30th through July 6th, 2019

Clicking on titles under Books I’ve ReadNetGalley Haul,and Email Haul will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on titles under Books with Pending Reviews and Books with Published Reviews will take you to Amazon.

Clicking on titles Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz will take you to that specific blog post.

Clicking on links under Giveaways I’ve Entered will take you to that giveaway

Clicking on the titles under Freebies I Scored will take you to Goodreads.

Clicking on the links under Weekly Posts will take you to that specific blog post.


Books I’ve Read:

An Unorthodox Match

A Highlander Walks into a Bar

29 Seconds

Books with pending reviews:

29 Seconds—review coming September 10th, 2019

The Truth Behind the Lie—review coming August 27th, 2019

Books with published reviews:

A Highlander Walks into a Bar—review here

Raze—review here

The Shadowverse—review here

We Went to the Woods—review here

NetGalley Haul:

Dark Alpha’s Redemption

Christmas Angels

Followers

The Wives

Email Haul:

Red Dawn Rising

Dirty Cooking

Blog Tours/Excerpts/Book Blitz:

Under the Skin—Excerpt

She’s a Spitfire—Excerpt

A Highlander Walks into a Bar—Blog Tour

Giveaways I’ve Entered:

Toxic Toffee—from Kensington Books

Weekly Posts:

Weekly Wrap Up

Freebie Sunday

Music Monday

Top Ten Tuesday

WWW Wednesday

Theme Thursday

WWW Wednesday: July 3rd, 2019

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Wars.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Personal:

Miss R: She’s over strep and it shows. She’s back to her sassy self this past week. The highlight of this week has been going to the library. In the summer, I take her and Mr. Z (Miss B will not go) and let them take out 2-3 books a week. This week, she picked out Uni the Unicorn and Uni the Unicorn and the Dream Come True.Very cute books and we had to read them with her stuffed unicorn named….Uni. She also starts swimming lessons next week. They are at the YMCA and they are free. Actually, all sports through the rec department are free if you live within city limits. And yes, I am taking full advantage of that!!

Mr. Z: He was upset that VBS ended. This is his last year of attending (the church goes up to rising 6th grade). Next year, he will be chaperoning. They have the older kids help with the younger ones until they get to be 16-17. Then they help with the 5-6th graders doing missionary work. He’s looking forward to it. He got 2 books this week at the library. They are Bravelands (Broken Pride: Book 1) by Erin Hunter and The 39 Clues: Doublecross Book 1: Mission Titanic by Jude Watson. He also starts swimming lessons next week.

Miss B: She is my only child who I haven’t signed up for things. But she has been keeping active by riding bikes. She has currently gotten interested in BMX biking/X games and I am encouraging that. But it has gotten hot out and that has been put on hold. Swimming at home has been put on a temporary hold (I will explain in my section). So, she has been gaming on her laptop and she has been helping out around the house. We did have a mandatory meeting for the Junior Police camp last Weds. That is happening the end of July and it looks like a blast. They are covering everything from exercise to how the police interact with the community to arrests to forensics. Since she wants to get into the high school that offers a forensic program, she is very excited for that. I am excited for her and it is going to be a busy two weeks. She gets dropped off between 730-8 am and won’t be picked up until 4 pm.

Me: So we bought a new pool on Saturday. BK decided that he wasn’t going to level it but instead was going to use paving stones to even the pool out. And, after a day of use, it tore (which I told him was going to happen). So, we had to empty it and are waiting on the patches and Flexitape. BK decided that he is going to level it this weekend and then refill the pool. I am wanting to cry because my water bill is going to be through the roof. But lesson learned. Other than that, life has been fine. No calls to the Dr (knock on wood). This has been the first week since the beginning of June where I didn’t have to take a kid to the Dr. I am hoping to keep it that way.

Reading/Reviews/Blog:

Reading: Another week where I finished all of the books on my ”What books I think I’ll read next?” list. I have also whittled my NetGalley backlog down more. I have 2 books that are older than 3 months. I will have zero by the end of the week. As of right now, I have 17 books on my Current Titles list that still need to be read. I did add 4 books over the weekend but still, I am doing pretty good!!

Reviews: I am behind writing reviews. The same as last week, 2 books. One of which is a blog tour and I will be writing that review as soon as I am done with this post.

Blog: I added a Mail Chimp widget and a widget for Bloglovin’. But they aren’t working and I need to figure out why. I also noticed that I had Google Translate up twice. Don’t know how that happened.


What I am currently reading:

An Unorthodox Match by Naomi Ragen

California girl Lola has her life all set up: business degree, handsome fiancé, fast track career, when suddenly, without warning, everything tragically implodes. After years fruitlessly searching for love, marriage, and children, she decides to take the radical step of seeking spirituality and meaning far outside the parameters of modern life in the insular, ultra orthodox enclave of Boro Park, Brooklyn. There, fate brings her to the dysfunctional home of newly-widowed Jacob, a devout Torah scholar, whose life is also in turmoil, and whose small children are aching for the kindness of a womanly touch.

While her mother direly predicts she is ruining her life, enslaving herself to a community that is a misogynistic religious cult, Lola’s heart tells her something far more complicated. But it is the shocking and unexpected messages of her new community itself which will finally force her into a deeper understanding of the real choices she now faces and which will ultimately decide her fate.

An Unorthodox March is a powerful and moving novel of faith, love, and acceptance, from Naomi Ragen, the international bestselling author of The Devil in Jerusalem.

I am a few chapters into An Unorthodox Match and I am not too sure what to think of it. There is so much going on that I am a little confused over things. I am also not a fan of Lola/Leah’s mother. Nope, can’t stand her.

An Unorthodox Match is expected to be published on September 24th, 2019. Look for my review on or after that date.


I recently finished reading:

A Highlander Walks into a Bar by Laura Trentham

The timeless romance, soaring passion—and gorgeous men—of Scotland comes to modern-day America. And the rules of love will never be the same… 

Isabel Buchanan is fiery, funny, and never at a loss for words. But she is struck speechless when her mother returns from a trip to Scotland with a six-foot-tall, very handsome souvenir. Izzy’s mother is so infatuated by the fellow that Izzy has to plan their annual Highland Games all by herself. Well, not completely by herself. The Highlander’s strapping young nephew has come looking for his uncle…

Alasdair Blackmoor has never seen a place as friendly as this small Georgia town—or a girl as brilliant and beguiling as Izzy. Instead of saving his uncle, who seems to be having a lovely time, Alasdair decides he’d rather help Izzy with the Highland Games. Show her how to dance like a Highlander. Drink like a Highlander. And maybe, just maybe, fall in love with a Highlander. But when the games are over, where do they go from here?

I enjoyed reading this book. It was a sweet romance. I did get off on the wrong foot with both Alasdair and Isabel at the beginning of the book. But as their own romance took off, my irritation with them dwindled.

A Highlander Walks into a Bar is expected to be published on July 30th, 2019. Since I am on the blog tour, my post will be published at some point today.


What books I think I’ll read next?

Letters from Angels by Dominic Schunker

There’s something very wrong with the world. A strange mist settles everywhere. It seems to be causing more than the usual horrors humans like to inflict on themselves, like an organising of those horrors into a plan to end them.

A Preacher with a past challenging his faith and a renowned Ufologist learn something evil is controlling it. They’re being shown signs to discover who it is but what is it?

Or is it the Biblical antichrist, fulfilling its apocryphal destiny?

If they can figure out what it is, maybe they can learn how to defeat it.

Thing is, it’s not easy. The signs of abduction and demonic possession are the same. Descriptions of aliens and biblical demons are the same. 

There’s nothing obvious presenting itself but there’s something about the number 37 that seems to have an answer. There is hope.

Meanwhile, the rest of humanity appears to be falling right into its trap. 

One way or another, the end of the world is indeed nigh and humans are not required. 

Eventually, the only solution is the most unlikely solution.

But it’s all they’ve got.

I have read previous books by Dominic Schunker and have liked them. So, when he approached me to read/review Letters from Angels, I made to review this book on that. From what the blurb hints at, I am thinking I am going to like the book.

Letters from Angels is expected to be published on July 7th, 2019. Be on the lookout for my review on or after that date.

Twenty-one Truths About Love by Matthew Dicks

1. Daniel Mayrock loves his wife Jill…more than anything. 
2. Dan quit his job and opened a bookshop.
3. Jill is ready to have a baby. 
4. Dan is scared; the bookshop isn’t doing well. Financial crisis is imminent. 
5. Dan hasn’t told Jill about their financial trouble. He’s ashamed. 
6. Then Jill gets pregnant
.

This heartfelt story is about the lengths one man will go to and the risks he will take to save his family. But Dan doesn’t just want to save his failing bookstore and his family’s finances—he wants to become someone.

1. Dan wants to do something special. 
2. He’s a man who is tired of feeling ordinary. 
3. He’s sick of feeling like a failure. 
4. Of living in the shadow of his wife’s deceased first husband.

Dan is also an obsessive list maker, and his story unfolds entirely in his lists, which are brimming with Dan’s hilarious sense of humor, unique world-view, and deeply personal thoughts. When read in full, his lists paint a picture of a man struggling to be a man, a man who has reached a point where he’s willing to anything for the love (and soon-to-be new love) of his life.

I am not too sure if I am going to like this book. I have read books similar to Twenty-one Truths About Love before and didn’t like them. But I like to give books a chance. Here’s to hoping that this one doesn’t blow it!!

Twenty-one Truths About Love is expected to be published on November 19th, 2019. Looks for my review on or after that date.

Red Dawn Rising by Margaret Watson

Musician Cassidy Drake has no idea who she really is until a brutal attack on her mother reveals truths she never could have imagined. Finn Brody, the mysterious man she meets at the hospital, suspects Cassidy’s true nature when magic erupts around them. 

Cassidy and Finn are drawn into a battle neither of them want. But they are essential in the quest to stop the evil fae queen from conquering the human world. Joined with the rest of The Four, can they defeat an entity with vast, unimaginable power? Or will they be the first casualties in the coming epic battle for survival? 

I am super excited to read Red Dawn Rising. I have read the previous books in the series and loved them. I have high expectations for this book.

Red Dawn Rising’s expected publication date is July 9th, 2019. Look for my review on or after that date.

The Woman He Knows by Margaret Watson

Darcy Gordon is hiding, watching for her past to catch up with her. So when her boss is injured in a suspicious accident, she’s certain it was meant for her. But instead of fleeing, as every instinct screams, guilt forces her to stay and help her boss’s brother run the restaurant where she works. 

There’s just one problem – Patrick Devereux is an FBI agent. His too-sharp eyes threaten to reveal all her secrets. Expose her for who she really is. She wants to lower her guard and let Patrick know her. But when he learns the truth, will he understand? Or will he arrest her? 

Again, another book that I am excited to read by the same author. Also another book that I have high expectations for.

The Woman He Knows is currently available for purchase. Be on the look out for my review soon.

Magic Heist by Mary Karlik

Layla rescued fairies that had been kidnapped and brought the human world. But now they can’t find their way back to the magic realm and time is running out.

Layla is a powerful fairy with magical ability that stretches beyond throwing spells. But with all that power, she still doesn’t know how to get over one-hundred fairies back to the magic realm. With their magic gone, the rescued fairies have no immunity to protect them from the toxins of the human world, and they’re slowly dying.

To find the path home, Layla knows she must team up with the one man who can make her insides quiver with an accidental brush of his fingertips. The same man who’s alter ego dragon is the natural predator of fairies. The man she knows will give his life to keep the fairies safe—Scotland’s finest Specialist Crime Division leader, Ian Cameron.

Ian has only been a dragon shifter for a few days. He struggles to control the dragon spirit locked inside his human form, doesn’t know what magical powers he may or may not have, and has never been to a magical world. But none of those things frighten him as much as the little spark that ignites in his soul when the half – human fairy is around.

But this little fairy is no Tinkerbell. She is brave, powerful, and can wield a sword like a medieval knight.

With growing feelings toward Layla, he couldn’t refuse to help her get the fairies back to the magic realm if he wanted to. The problem is the dragon who lives inside him would like nothing more than to feed his appetite with all of those little fairies—especially the half human one who killed its leader.

I can’t wait to read Magic Heist. It has a little of everything that I like in a book.

Magic Heist’s publication date is July 9th, 2019. Since I am on the blog tour, my post will be published on July 10th, 2019.