THOUGHTS ON BOOKS (#1): Bonfire / Snowfall on Haven Point / Our Little Secret

BonfireBonfire by Krysten Ritter
My rating: 4.25 of 5 stars

Thank you to Penguin’s First to Read Program for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was impressed with Krysten Ritter’s debut novel. I’m kind of out of touch with TV & movies, so I didn’t realize the author was an actor until finishing. I quickly grabbed this title when I saw it was suspense and didn’t pay much attention to the blurb. Anyway, I enjoyed it.

Abby Williams is an environmental lawyer who’s returned to her tiny hometown to investigate possible contamination by a plastics company with a whole lot of influence in Barrens, Indiana. Abby hasn’t been home in ten years, not since her friend-turned-bully disappeared just after graduation. Barrens is full of bad memories for Abby, but her relationship with the town and people in it is unresolved, which is why this troubling pollution case is important to her.

I liked the author’s writing style and her ability to hook me with her flawed and not-so-likable characters. The overall atmosphere of the book is dark and foreboding, perfect for this gripping mystery/suspense. Looking forward to more from Krysten Ritter.

Snowfall on Haven Point (Haven Point, #5)Snowfall on Haven Point by RaeAnne Thayne
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book was a freebie from Harlequin on Christmas Eve. I was in the mood for a sweet small town holiday romance, and SNOWFALL ON HAVEN POINT was just what I was looking for. Sheriff Marshall Bailey is laid up with a broken leg at his sister’s house, recovering from a hit and run. With his family out of town, his sister’s friend Andie is saddled with caring for the stubborn, grumpy man. While Marshall’s wounds are physical, Andie is dealing with emotional ones, starting with the death of her husband two years ago. Along with the developing romance between Marshall and Andie are two intriguing side stories, including the mystery surrounding the hit and run. This is the fifth book in the Haven Point series. I read the first one a couple of years ago, and now I want to go back and read the rest. I love RaeAnne Thayne’s realistic, relatable characters and cozy small town settings. Enjoyed.

Our Little SecretOur Little Secret by Roz Nay
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A woman is questioned by police after her ex-boyfriend’s wife disappears. Lots of great reviews for this book, but unfortunately it wasn’t for me. The story lacked suspense, and the characters didn’t grab my attention. I usually enjoy unlikable or unreliable characters, but not so much this time. I couldn’t understand the reasoning behind many things the characters did or said. Maybe if I was clearer about who the “our” was in the title, and also which “little secret” it’s referring to. I liked the final twist though.

“No two persons ever read the same book.” ― Edmund Wilson

BRIDES FOR BROTHERS by Debbie Macomber

Series: Midnight Sons, #1
Publisher: MIRA
Release Date: October 1995
Source: Purchased
Rating: ★★★★

Hard Luck, Alaska — a Town that Needs Women!

Location: 50 miles north of the Arctic Circle. Population: 150 (mostly men) — but growing! Because the O’Halloran brothers, who run a bush-plane charter service called Midnight Sons, are heading a campaign to bring women to Hard Luck!

Sawyer O’Halloran — He’s the middle brother. Pilot and part owner of Midnight Sons. And, if the truth be told, he’s not entirely in favor of this scheme. But he considers himself immune to the charms of any woman — he’s adamantly against marriage and he’s not too sure about love!

Abbey Sutherland — Single mother of two adorable kids. Veteran of one bad marriage. Wants a new beginning — not a new romance. She responds to the Midnight Sons ad and is delighted to accept their offer. But there’s a complication — or two. She hasn’t told the O’Hallorans she’s arriving with children!

The beginning of the Midnight Sons series set in Alaska, 1995. BRIDES FOR BROTHERS is a sweet romance with a cast of good, down-to-earth people. The O’Halloran brothers who own a plane-charter business in Hard Luck, Alaska hatch a plan to attract women to their remote town. It’s all very innocent and on the up & up. I did have to giggle at the men’s reaction to having fresh womenfolk in their midst. Was it 1895 or 1995? The first to accept their offer is Abbey Sutherland who’s hired to set up a library in Hard Luck. Sawyer O’Halloran takes a liking to her, but of course, there are complications. Overall, just a nice romance to give you a warm, cozy feeling. Looking forward to the next book.

SILVER THAW by Catherine Anderson

Series: Mystic Creek, #1
Publisher: Signet
Release Date: January 6, 2015
Source: Borrowed from the library
Rating: ★★

After years of living in fear of her husband, Amanda Banning has left him and moved to Mystic Creek, Oregon, for a fresh start. But she’s having a tough time providing for herself and her six-year-old daughter. Writing her secret yearnings on slips of paper and sending them into the wind helps her cling to the hope that things will get better…and that she can find happiness again.

Jeb Sterling has no idea that the handwritten messages he finds scattered across his land are the first hints that his life is about to change. Nor does he understand why he feels so compelled to help Amanda Banning and her daughter when a cold snap leaves them temporarily homeless. Maybe he’s inspired by Amanda’s courage or perhaps by her beautiful brown eyes. Either way, the man who once renounced love suddenly finds himself willing to do anything for the pair. Amanda seems to have given up on her dreams, but Jeb refuses to quit until he makes her every wish come true.

I enjoyed the beginning of this book: secret messages on pink paper blowing in the breeze, a potential “stranded in a snowstorm” romance, and a beautiful Oregon setting. Unfortunately, my joy was short-lived. The story moved sooo slowly. I think at least a hundred pages could have been cut out. After the much anticipated showdown with the bad guy just past the halfway mark, it was just plain boring.

SILVER THAW was the first book I’ve read by Catherine Anderson. Is she a Christian Romance author? I would definitely put this book in the Christian Romance genre, though it wasn’t tagged as such in the library.

I was hoping this book would be similar to Robyn Carr’s Virgin River series, but it didn’t even come close!! I’m giving it two stars, and my two stars = nah.