The Sunday Post #240 | February 28, 2021


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news: a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books,
 and share what's coming up on your blog in the week ahead. 
Work-wise, it was a hectic/stressful week as I continue to pull a project together. I was so glad for the weekend to arrive. 

We had to attend a funeral on Friday (it was a member of my brother-in-law's family, no one I was close to) and it was strange to be around people. Due to COVID, it was a very small service, held outside, but even so we kept our distance and stayed masked. I didn't feel unsafe but at the same time I was also happy when it was over and we could leave.

It's been in the 80's all weekend so I'm guessing Florida has decided winter is over. Yes, the A/C is running in February.   

This week's 80's music fix is Sometimes (1986) from Erasure. They were such a favorite of mine back in the day. Andy Bell's voice was gorgeous and their music was pure pop perfection.

Tuesday, February 23

Friday, February 26




I had a great surprise this week when Atria emailed me an ARC of That Summer. I love Weimer's brand of storytelling (Mrs. Everything was one of my favorite reads of 2019) and That Summer is one of my most highly anticipated releases this year.

How was your week? Any new books? Any news to share?
I'd love to hear about it!

Short Take Reviews: Roommate, Without You, Torn, Mackenzie 's Mountain


4.5 stars
Any new release from Sarina Bowen makes me happy, but returning to the True North world is extra special. Both Kieran and Roderick were characters that I loved and both had family and/or relationship issues that made my heart hurt. Kieran (he's a Shipley!) was a bit of a grump, while Roderick was a ray of sunshine. They were thrown together first by their jobs and then by ending up as roommates. They both had a kind of vulnerability that made me want to give them a hug. Their chemistry was off the charts and I loved watching as they navigated a friendship and then more. There were cameos from much-loved characters which was a fun bonus. The narration from Teddy Hamilton and Stephen Dexter (two of my favorites) made Kieran and Roddy come to life and made the reading experience extra-special.

4 stars
To be honest, I largely downloaded the audio of Without You because Teddy Hamilton was one of the narrators. This one ended up surprising me and being more than I expected. Both main characters were dealing with grief and it felt so genuine. They were born pretty broken and it was easy to be sympathetic. Deacon was grieving the loss of his younger brother. Julian, his deceased brother's boyfriend, had been part of the family for years and, with no family of his own, was devastated by the loss and also unsure if he still had a place in his boyfriend's family. There was such long-standing simmering friction between Deacon and Julian and it took a long time for them to resolve that and move forward. But when they did, the relationship that formed between them was so solid and I loved the unconditional support they showed each other.


4 stars
When I saw a trusted Booktuber rave about Torn I decided to give it a try. This was a taboo/age gap romance, further complicated because Toren had been an "uncle" of sorts to Kenzi since she was born. They had always been close, with a unique bond, but by the time Kenzi was graduating high school both of them were experiencing feelings that went beyond friendship. This could have come across as prurient or salacious, but Carian Cole took the time to really set the foundation, build the relationship slowly, and highlight the conflict that both characters felt (especially Toren, who truly struggled with his feelings). At 400+ pages (12 hours on audio), it felt a little long at times, but it was also necessary to tell the story in a way that actually had me pulling for Kenzi and Tor. There was one aspect of the ending that I wasn't a fan of, but overall this was a solid story that impressed me.

2.5 stars 
I could not get past the issues that permeated the whole book. The whole thing felt extremely dated, and I don't mean because it was published in 1989, because it would have seemed dated even then. Several times I had to remind myself that I wasn't reading a historical romance. Main character Mary was the prissiest character I have ever encountered. She came across as some Little House on the Prairie character with her antiquated views and speech. (Only shameless hussies would wear a skirt without a proper petticoat underneath. I can't make this up, y'all.) She was in her early 30's and constantly referred to herself as an "old maid schoolteacher" ( sixteen times, according to my Kindle).  When it came to the male lead, a Native/Indigenous American named Wolf Mackenzie, the language used when talking about him stopped me mid-sentence several time. At their first meeting Mary asked Wolf if he was a "half-breed." Yeah, that happened. At one point she fantasized about him wearing a loincloth, and the term "savage" (when referring to Wolf) was used on several occasions. I mean, WTH? Maybe Linda Howard was intentional in her terminology to show how sheltered Mary was (I'm reaching here, I know it), but the whole thing just screamed out of date and out of touch. It's unfortunate because the storyline was interesting and Wolf and his son Joe were intriguing characters.


Review / Release Blitz: Return To Us by Corinne Michaels


RETURN TO US by Corinne Michaels is now live!

From New York Times Bestselling author Corinne Michaels comes a new second chance standalone love story.

At eighteen, I walked away from Willow Creek Valley for good.

I was young, scared, and stupid, and it cost me the love of my life—Grayson Parkerson.

Fourteen years later, a crash sends me back home to recover.

Back to where we met, fell in love, and planned a future.

The one he’s now living as a single dad to his daughter.

Working at The Park Inn together gives us a chance to reconnect, and seeing him with his little girl makes me long for the days when he was mine. One look in his gorgeous blue-green eyes, and it’s like I never left. One kiss, and my world is upside down. One night together, and I know without a doubt, in his arms is where I belong.

I’m not the girl I was—intimidated by his wealthy family and desperate to escape our small town. I can imagine a new life for us here.

But he’s learned to guard his heart, and trust won’t come easily.

How can I convince him to give first love a second chance?

M Y   T H O U G H T S

Corinne Michaels consistently delivers heartfelt, sexy/swoony romance and Return To Us is no exception. Jessica is back in the small North Carolina town where she grew up – the same town she fled fourteen years ago when she ended a relationship with the man she loved. Never accepted by his family, she knew it was only a matter of time before he would feel forced to choose between them. So she took that choice out of his hands and left. Now back home to recuperate from a traumatic accident, she’s forced to face the feelings for Grayson that have never gone away.

Grayson was shattered when Jessica chose to leave. Now, raising his daughter alone, the never-married Grayson is guarded and gun-shy. He’s never stopped loving Jessica, but he also won’t open himself up to that kind of hurt again. Convinced that Jessica will leave again as soon as she is able, he does his best to keep his walls up, but there’s no denying that their connection is still there.

I loved these two characters from the very start. Jessica was dealing with some serious issues that sidelined her and she was struggling. My heart hurt for Jessica as she suffered from recurring nightmares, crippling headaches, and speech issues. I loved her commitment to her therapy sessions and her willingness to be honest and open. But the real focus was on she and Grayson and I loved every minute. Whether these two loved and cared for one another was never in question. They just had to overcome the obstacles in their way (mostly self-created) and learn to trust again.

Corinne Michaels is the best at second-chance romance and small-town settings and both of those aspects really shine here in Return To Us. This was an absorbing story of lasting love and I can’t wait to get more of the Parkerson siblings’ stories as the series continues. 

Download today on Amazon, Apple Books, Audible, 

Google Play, Kobo, Barnes & Noble!


Apple Books:



Google Play:


Narrated by Andi Arndt & Sebastian York


Meet Corinne

Corinne Michaels is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of romance novels. Her stories are chock full of emotion, humor, and unrelenting love, and she enjoys putting her characters through intense heartbreak before finding a way to heal them through their struggles.

Corinne is a former Navy wife and happily married to the man of her dreams. She began her writing career after spending months away from her husband while he was deployed--reading and writing were her escapes from the loneliness. Corinne now lives in Virginia with her husband and is the emotional, witty, sarcastic, and fun-loving mom of two beautiful children.

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