book reviews

Valentine’s Romance

If you have a romance novel, please add it to the comments so we can crowdsource Valentine’s Day. Here are two I liked:

  1. Juggernaut–fun romantic story about innocense, crime, and justice
  2. Snow White and the Civil War (Part 1)–a Civil War era take on Snow White complete with dwarves, wicked stepmother, and magic
–a note about my reviews: I only review books I enjoyed. I need to be inspired to write. That’s why so many of my reviews are 4/5 or 5/5

Juggernaut

by Bobbie Underwood

5/5

Juggernaut, a Romantic Adventure (2019) was written by Bobby Underwood, an Indie efriend. I don’t read a lot of romance but I’ve enjoyed Bobby’s other fiction so thought I’d try it. Another winner! The plot is not uncommon–a beautiful girl falls victim to criminals. While trying to untangle her dilemma, she finds the man of her dreams. No spoilers.

Kindergarten teacher Felicia wins a once in a lifetime vacation to Martinique. Her innocence and naivete make her the perfect foil for criminals who use her to carry out their nefarious crimes. Hotel Detective Jack Carter first notices Felicia’s beauty–inside and out. When she seems to be the perpetrator of serious crimes, he refuses to believe it and sets about finding the truth. As he spends time with her trying to unravel the mystery, the fall in love, something he never saw in his future.

On the surface, this is a fun romantic story but what makes it a standout is Bobby Underwood’s ability to tell the story. Through his pen, you feel Felicia’s excitement at winning this amazing vacation, her pain at being used, her, and her thrill at finding a man who is everything she’s ever hoped for. Juggernaut is highly recommended for a long plane flight or a short weekend. It’s not a long book but I sure wished it was by the time it ended.


Snow White and the Civil War

by Cathleen Townsend

5/5

Cathleen Townsend’s Snow White and the Civil War, Part 1 of 2, is a delightful story based on the well known Cinderella fairy tale but with many differences. In this case, it takes place in California in the 1850’s, during the time of the Civil War. A young girl–Gwen–has a lovely life with her mother and the big decisions of marriage in her near future when her mother dies of scarlet fever. Her father is a bit of a stranger to her, she to him, and when he remarries a beautiful woman who turns out to be a witch, he is ambivalent to the new wife’s poor treatment of his only daughter and refuses to interfere. The stepmother finally arranges for Gwen’s death but the man responsible for carrying it out allows her to escape. Her refuge ends up a desolate cabin frequented by seven dwarf miners. She agrees to take care of their cooking, cleaning, and sewing if they will keep her secret. All goes well until her wicked stepmother tries to find her. That’s when the story gets complicated.

Whether you like the original or not, you’ll love this fractured version. Townsend is an excellent storyteller who adds lots of original ideas into this favorite. I had planned to read it over a week or so and ended up finishing it in a weekend. Be prepared: It ends on a cliffhanger because–as promised–it is only Part 1 of 2. Part 2 is on my Kindle app, waiting!

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Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Man vs. Nature saga, and the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, blog webmaster, an Amazon Vine Voice,  a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Laws of Nature, Summer 2021.

69 thoughts on “Valentine’s Romance

  1. As you probably realized, I am not a big romance reader. However, one of my favorite authors, Edward Abbey, does have one book that I would place in this genre “Dark Sun.” It’s also one of his shortest books.

    It sounds like these books are all well told.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Awesome reviews, Jacqui. Thanks for the intro to Bobbie Underwood ad her book. And I also enjoyed Snow White and the Civil War. Cathleen is a wonderful writer. 🙂 I’ve never really gravitated toward romances, but I do enjoy Jacquie Biggar’s books. Perfectly Imperfect was awesome. 🙂 Happy Reading and Happy Valentine’s Day!

    Liked by 2 people

      • Ah, thanks, Jacqui. I think most people will actually like part 2 better–it’s Jack’s story, and it has a lot more action. It also remedied something I disliked about the original fairy tale–here’s this guy, they know nothing about him, and yet he’s here to take their beloved Snow away. But everything’s all right because he’s rich. I mean, he could’ve had a dozen mistresses, been cruel in a bunch of different ways, and nobody even worried about that. So in part 2 you see Jack grow into the kind of man who you’d be fine seeing marry your daughter. And he also helps California save the Union in the Civil War. That last part really happened–not Jack’s role since he’s fictional, but it came very close at one point. You can Google the Chapman affair and get an eyewitness account of the man who actually tried to steal the California gold shipments for the Confederacy, if that sort of thing interests you.

        If the Confederacy had gotten their hands on California’s gold, they could have won. All they would’ve had to do is sit things out, since to them a stalemate was the same as a win. But instead, they had to go to Gettysburg, in large part because the farms in the border states on the Confederate side had been stripped bare by constant raiding. Nobody was willing to run the blockade for worthless Confederate script. But if they’d had gold, it would’ve been a different story.

        Anyway, I’m a bit of a history buff, and it’s a part of the Civil War that no one knows about. : )

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for sharing!!.. Happy Valentines Day!!… 🙂

    Until we meet again, on this day and every day..
    May flowers always line your path
    and sunshine light your way,
    May songbirds serenade your
    every step along the way,
    May a rainbow run beside you
    in a sky that’s always blue,
    And may happiness fill your heart
    each day your whole life through.
    May the sun shine all day long
    Everything go right, nothing go wrong
    May those you love bring love back to you
    And may all the wishes you wish come true
    (Irish Saying)

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Hi Jacqui – what fun reads … Bobby’s sounds a great interlude read … while Snow White – sounds fascinating … thanks for the tips – great to know about – enjoy your day – Hilary

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I think it’s some time since I read something that would be considered romance. I think the last was The Right Wrong Man by Pamela Wight. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Perhaps I should read some again. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

      • Aw, thanks, you two. DL, I just left a review on Bigfoot yesterday in all the usual places. I’m jealous of that one, btw. I’ve always wanted to write a Bigfoot story, and I’ve got it to the point that I know it has to be a mystery, but I haven’t quite figured out what to do with it yet. I loved your solution–keeping Bigfoot as a character who always remains offstage, as it were.

        And The Button is next. : )

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you, Cathleen 🙂 Yay! I based Bigfoot on a news article about a local lake being poisoned to kill the invasive pike fish and it took off into Bigfoot territory. My only solution to nothing ever being found was it had to fall into alien catagory.

          Liked by 1 person

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