Friday, May 6, 2016

Book Review: Where the Heart is Romance Collection

Today's review is on the Where the Heart Is Romance Collection by Various Authors. 
Most of these authors were new to me. I am going to do a mini-review for every novella like I've done for my other reviews on novella collections. I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and Barbour Publishers in exchange for my honest review! Let's get started:

Where the Heart Is by Sally Laity: 
This story was interesting because even though the couple were attracted to each other, it wasn't an insta-love situation. I loved how they got to know each other a little, and even how they were thrown together several times because of their friends and family members. I also enjoyed how the author showed the couple's life after the wedding and some of the difficulties they faced, it made the story a bit more realistic. 3.75/ 5 Stars.

The Midwife's Apprentice by Rhonda Gibson: 
It was an interesting story because it started like a typical romance story, but the twist in the middle shook things up a little bit, it was also set on the Oregon Trail. Again, I appreciated how the attraction between the main characters developed over time. I also enjoyed how Polly, the female lead, was trying to be independent, but yet she still suffered from insecurity. Besides the twist, the plot was just okay. 3/5 Stars.

Murder or Matrimony by Pamela Kaye Tracy: 
I expected this story to be predictable, but I was surprised. Even though this story takes place on the Oregon Trail there was mystery and intrigue that kept me guessing the whole time. I loved the romance and how that was mixed with the mystery surrounding the main characters. 4/5 Stars

Bride in the Valley by Andrea Boeshaar:
This also took place on the Oregon Trail and was connected to the previous story because it tells the story of another set characters that were mentioned in that one and it refers to some of the events that happened at the end of it. This story was a nice fluffy romance. Even though it was predictable how it was going to end, there were a few surprises along the way. 4/5 Stars.

New Garden's Inspiration by Claire Sanders: 
At first I didn't like the use of "thee", "thou", and "thy," especially because it made it sound like it was set in the 16th century. However, it is explained that it is because Leah is Quaker, but I feel like this should have been stated at the beginning of the story because I was thrown off by this. I loved how it wasn't just about the couple's love, but also how Caleb's children come to love Leah. 4/5 Stars.

A Tender Branch by Jane LaMuyon: 
This was interesting story that takes place on the Transcontinental Railroad. It was probably one of the more fluffy stories in this collection, but I enjoyed how it focused on the importance of forgiveness. 3.5/5 Stars

Knight and Day by Erica Vetsch:
This novella kind of dealt with the topic of a mail-order bride, but it also dealt with the topic of blended families and moving on after the tragic loss of a loved one. 3.25/5 Stars

On a White Charger by Erica Vetsch: 
This was another cute story. It was connected to the previous story because Emmeline is Evelyn's (the female main character from the previous story) sister. It also kind of dealt with a mail-order bride, but I liked how it also dealt with the dangers of being a shepherd on the range. I also loved how over the course of the story, Emmeline grows from being a naive daydreamer into a mature woman. 3.5/5 Stars.

The Wonder of Spring by Carol Cox: 
This was a nice, cute romance to conclude this collection. It was interesting to see how there were certain things that women couldn't do because it was frowned upon. I love the tension there was between Charlene Matkin and Matthew Benson because of the secret she tries to keep from him. However, I wish Matthew's "secret" had been a bit more surprising than it actually was, his secret kind fell flat amidst the entire plot of this novella. 3/5 Stars.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novella collections, the stories were really well-written and they were nice relaxing reads in the midst of the end of this semester. I felt like it had the right proportions of fluffy romance and action that made me want to keep reading each of the stories. I look forward to reading more of these collections in the future. I am giving this whole collection 4/5 Stars because all the stories were enjoyable.

Thanks again to NetGalley and Barbour Publishers for providing me with an ARC of this collection in exchange for my honest review!

Happy Reading,
Janelle L.C.

P.S. If you have any book recommendations let me know and I will check them out! :) 

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