Second Chances by Abbie Williams – a Review

Second Chances by Abbie Williams – a Review

 

Second ChancesAmazon / B&N / Kobo / BAM / Book Depository

Description:
The past summer has been a wild ride for Joelle Gordon, in more ways than one. After discovering her husband cheating, she fled Chicago for her small-town childhood home in Landon, Minnesota. There, her family’s lakeside diner, the Shore Leave Café, remains unchanged. Yet nothing else in Landon is the same, including her family of women, her three teenaged daughters, Camille, Tish, and Ruthann, and the intense, passionate love she has found with Blythe Tilson.  Now Blythe is in trouble and Jackson is back in Landon, rethinking the divorce. Joelle must face one of the most difficult and important decisions of her life – or will the Davis family curse ruin any chances of finding love?

Review:

Second Chances is the conclusion of Summer at the Shore Leave Cafe and the second Shore Leave novel by author Abbie Williams.

This novel begins with our heroine Joelle (Jo) preparing to go to Oklahoma to support her love Blythe Tilson. He’s up on charges of leaving the state without parole approval. Long story, but he had some troubles, explained in this story, that ended with his incarnation for a brief time. He thought since he had a job in Minnesota he was okay to go…short of it is he’s not a criminal even though her ex likes to say so.

He’s sentenced to thirty days, then will be released and can come back to the Shore Leafe Café to work. But not seeing him and having only 15 minutes once a week phone call and letters, makes a month feel like forever for the two of them. And while he’s away, the ex tries to win her back.

It’s an in depth look at finding your life again, beginning to put things in perspective for Jo. There’s lots of heartache for several people, as well as happiness and love, adventure and some issues. In short, it’s a great picture of the life of this family and friends at the Shore Leave Café.

Author Abbie Williams does a marvelous job of depicting the interesting lives of everyone concerned, while still having this plot revolve around Jo’s life and decisions.

There’s plenty of what most of us like, love scenes and downright romantic and hot conversations, fun, and thrills.

There was even a hint of drama for the next novel.

Reviewed by Georgianna

Copy provided by Publisher

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Summer at Shore Leave Cafe by Abbie Williams – a Review

Summer at Shore Leave Cafe by Abbie Williams – a Review

 

Summer at Shore Leave CafeAmazon / B & N / Kobo / BAM / Book Depository

Description:
Joelle Gordon is leaving Chicago and her cheating husband to head for her hometown of Landon, Minnesota. There, she returns to the Shore Leave Café, the lakeside diner the Davis women have run for decades. Joelle’s family, including her three teenaged daughters, Camille, Tish, and Ruthann, is made up of strong women who have long believed in a curse upon them – a curse that robs them of the men they love. This summer has plenty in store for Joelle. Finding herself confronted with the reality of single motherhood, the last thing she expects is gorgeous, passionate Blythe Tilson, a summer employee at Shore Leave, with an uncertain past. Can Joelle resist the temptation of a younger man, and does she dare to consider loving someone again, or will the Davis family curse prove all too true? A story about heartbreak, blame, family, destiny, and the difficulties of returning home,

Review:

Summer at the Shore Leave Café by Abbie Williams is a wonderfully complicated story of a family of women with a “myth” of men that voluntarily leave while the children are very young. These strong lovely women are used to surviving on their own and have a wonderful family business on a lake. The Shore Leave Café is their diner/restaurant/bar on Flickertail Lake in Landon, MN. This is the story of Joelle Davis-Gordon and Blythe Tilson (after her marriage, to Jackie Gordon, was mostly over).

The story begins with a brief overview of family history with men, then Joelle (Jo) tells her tale of getting pregnant on the night of the Sr. Prom, their subsequent marriage and lonely life being the young mother left in the apartment as Jack (Jackie) attends Northwestern and earns his law degree.

Like most of the ‘husbands’ before him, Jackie was a cheater, and Jo walks into a Christmas party at his firm, finding him well into the act on top of his desk. Five months later, she’s on her way home to Landon and the Shore Leave Café with her three girls, supposedly for the summer. She thinks the girls know nothing about the issues with their cheating father.

Interestingly enough, Jo doesn’t totally regret or hate her cheating spouse. She remembers all the heated lovemaking and fun as well as the bad. I personally think that’s more realistic. The relationships and family issues are absolutely to die for!

That’s the setup for the rest of the story. I don’t do spoilers, just give you my impressions of the writing and how I felt reading it. This is a great story, well worth a read. It has a real small town feel and you begin to love the people in it. There are steamy scenes and magnificent conversations, as well as a bit of clairvoyance. It’s well written. Abbie Williams is not a new author to me and I love her style of writing. Her stories have a very period and real feel to them. They’re descriptive, but not boring. Her plots are interesting but complicated, which I find intriguing.

The only downside to this book, at least for me, was the ending. I’m a HEA fan. This is more of a serial. While it does end with Jo making a decision to go after her man, you have to wait for the next book for a resolution. That said, I’m waiting breathlessly for the next book. Yeah, I need it bad!

If you love small town complicated romance, this one’s for you!

Reviewed by Georgianna

Copy provided by Publisher

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Soul of a Crow by Abbie Williams – a Review

Soul of a Crow by Abbie Williams – a Review

 

Soul of a CrowAmazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo/ BAM / The Book Depository

Description:
It is 1868 and the country is still reeling from the brutal effects of the Civil War. Lorie Blake, a war-orphan who escaped the miserable prison of her life as a prostitute in a Missouri whorehouse, embarks on a breathtaking overland journey northwest. With Lorie is her newfound family – brothers Boyd and Malcolm Carter, experienced horseman Sawyer Davis, and his beloved paint mare, Whistler. For the first time in years, there seems reason to hope. Thrown together by fate, and now deeply bound by love, each of them are determined to begin new lives as homesteaders in Minnesota. But, the past refuses to die. Former Confederate soldiers Sawyer and Boyd are haunted by the specters of the War, a conflict never truly put to rest. New friends emerge and old enemies arise, as ancient hatreds boil over in the hearts of the men who survived. In the face of incredible odds, Lorie must rely upon all of the strength in her soul as she battles for the life of her true love and the enduring promise of a new beginning in the north.

Review:

Soul of a Crow is book two of the Dove series by Abbie Williams. Author Williams is a very talented writer that gives her stories a “period” feel. From the descriptions of the places to the clothes and the speech of her characters, she immerses her readers into the time period. The issues and customs are well researched and “feel” human and real, often difficult.

The prologue begins with a story of the men right after the war ended, defending themselves against horse thieves, Sawyer killing one in self-defense. It’s a very realistic look at what returning soldiers of both sides (but mostly the boys in gray) faced as they tried to regain their previous lives.

This book is a continuation of Heart of a Dove, as the tale of Sawyer and Lorie moves further toward Minnesota with Malcolm and Boyd. Their dream of getting land and beginning a life over in the Northwest keeps them moving through the prairies toward their goal.

As the story progresses this talented storyteller takes us into the heart of prairie with the good, the bad, and the ugly well described. Love like we all dream of, heartbreak like we all fear. Hard decisions, unbound dreams, and resolute determination. Our characters face many dangers and joys all very heartfelt and yet realistically done.

I don’t do spoilers, and this is a series you really need to experience. I think the best thing I can say is that I feel if it doesn’t make it to the big screen…the world will have missed a great opportunity.

Please consider picking up this series and letting it change your soul for just a short while. It’s so incredibly exciting and inspiring I can’t wait for the next…Grace of a Hawk.

Reviewed by Georgianna

Copy provided by Publisher

 

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Heart of a Dove by Abbie Williams – Review & Giveaway

Heart of a Dove by Abbie Williams – Review & Giveaway

 

Heart of a DoveAmazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo / The Book Depository / BAM

Description:
The Civil War has ended, leaving the country with a gaping wound. Lorie Blake, a southern orphan sold into prostitution at fifteen, has carefully guarded her aching soul from the disgrace forced upon her every evening. Two years have passed, leaving her with little hope of anything more. Meanwhile, three men – longtime friends – and a young boy with a heart of gold are traveling northward, planning to rebuild their lives in the north and leave behind the horrors of their time as soldiers in the Confederate Army.

Fate, however, has plans of its own, causing their lives to collide in a river town whorehouse. Forced to flee, Lorie escapes and joins them on the journey north. But danger stalks them all in the form of a vindictive whorehouse madam and an ex-Union soldier, insane and bent on exacting revenge. At last, Lorie must come to terms with her past and devastating secrets that she cannot yet bear to reveal.

Heart of a Dove is the first book in a gripping, sweeping romantic saga of pain, unbearable choices, loss and true love set against the backdrop of a scarred, post-Civil War America.

Review:

Heart of a Dove is a historical but romantic telling of life after the Civil War, yet it is so much more than that.

After the Civil War ended there was a generation of men returning to homes that were either no longer there or had been irreparably changed by the war and life. Many families had to deal with life after their brothers, sons, fathers, uncles and others had given their lives to a cause that was unrealized. Many of these families fought for something nobler than the ability to hold slaves, in fact many of those on the losing side did not believe in slavery but in other things that were at stake. While the men were away at war, life for the women was no better and sometimes so much worse.

This is the world author Abbie Williams takes us to. It could and often was a brutal and barbaric time for those unable to defend themselves. However, even in this time, love finds a way to bloom and grow.

I don’t want to spoil this marvelous tale for you by giving you too much detail, so let me just give you the circumstances of interest. A lovely Tennessee girl of very good family is left orphaned and in the care of neighbors, who did not care. Her life was a living hell…

When all seems lost enter three men traveling to a new home in the West. Three handsome strong and honorable men, who found something in common, her father. One takes her into his care and promises to honor and care for her. She travels west with them and one twelve year old boy, who she begins to love like she did her brothers who died.

While traveling, she falls in love with one of the younger men, and he with her. There is a small touch of the fey in this relationship. They seem to be fated to be together. The man who offered to take care of her is also in love with her. The third man, loves his friends and wants her happiness like a sister.

Okay, that’s the setup and I’ve purposefully left out the incredible details. To give away more would dampen the wonderful descriptive narrative of this marvelous tale. Ms. Williams’ writing flows smoothly, actually making you feel the emotions, terror, and despair as well as the beauty and love fighting for survival.

The only criticism I can offer is that she may have tried too hard to convince me of the couple’s overwhelming love…I got it right away. This did not distract from the story for me.

Can the situation be worked out, or will this tear the three friends apart forever? How this story and fate contrive to make this all come about is a marvelous display of storytelling, one which I’m looking forward to seeing again in the next installment of tales by this wonderful new (at least for me) author.

Grab you favorite treats, some tissues, something soft you can pound things with…LOL. Enjoy this great story. I certainly did.

Reviewed by Georgianna


Copy provided by Publisher

 

About the Author

AbbieWilliams

Born and raised in Minnesota, Abbie has always been a writer. She pays homage to her home state, setting nearly all of her novels in Minnesota lake country, some of the most breathtaking scenery in all of the world. Her novels feature true love, passion and intensity, humor and the strength of family ties. She lives with her husband, three daughters, and a great deal of books.

 

 

giveaway

Spotlight & Giveaway by CAP logo tiny

If you’re a fan of historical romance, check out Heart of a Dove by Abbie Williams. This sweeping saga follows Lorie Blake, a 15 year old Southern orphan sold into prostitution when the Civil War ends. After 3 years, she continues to carefully guard her soul against the atrocities forced upon her every night. Meanwhile, three men and a boy with a heart of gold are travelling north, trying to leave behind the horrors of their time as Confederate soldiers and build a new life in the north. When their lives collide in a river town whorehouse, nothing will be the same for any of them.

As the official release date (December 5) of Heart of a Dove approaches, we are very happy to point you towards an awesome giveaway!

The lucky winner will be receiving:

• Signed copy of the books
• Handcrafted vintage style earrings
• Dove & Heart Charm• $20 iTunes card
• Leather bound notebook with playlist

HoaD Giveaway
To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter and hopefully you’ll win.

 

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A Notion of Love by Abbie Williams

A Notion of Love by Abbie Williams

A Notion of LoveLinks to order A Notion of Love: Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Kobo



Description:
Twelve years ago, Jillian Henrinksen gave up any hope of finding love again. After suffering the loss of her husband to a tragic accident, she clung to the only remaining stability she had: her young son, her family of women, and her job at their restaurant, The Shore Leave Café. Now it is summer again, and change is in the hot and humid air, including the arrival of Jillian’s older sister Joelle, home now to stay. And then there is Justin Miller, a longtime family friend, dangerously sexy and yet made bitter from a terrible accident sustained five years before. Can Jillian and Justin dare to risk their broken hearts and take a chance on love?


Review:

A NOTION OF LOVE is part of The Shore Leave Café series by Abbie Williams, but the first book in the series that I have read.   A Notion of Love  takes place at a lake side community and revolves around a family of strong women and their Cafe.  Jilly and her sister have been raised by their single mother, grandmother and great aunts.  We meet Jillian when she is a teenager and is falling in love with her high school sweetheart.  They marry young, have a child and live in his parents’ basement.  Some of the women in this family have a gift, that they call notions.  They can see events that will happen in the future, a premonition of sorts.  Her aunt has a notion when brushing Jilly’s hair and “sees” the tragic death of Jilly’s young husband, but she also knows that Jilly will be all right.

Twelve years has passed and Jilly has always been drawn to her friend Justin.  His wife has left him after a tragic accident that has disfigured part of his face.  Can they both take a chance on love again? The majority of A Notion of Love is their slow but steady love story.  I call it “crockpot” love, allow two people to slowly simmer and intensify in their attraction towards each other.  This love usually turns out perfect, due to all of the time and the steady “heat”! 

If you love reading about strong women and second chances at love, you will enjoy this novel.  The book is a solid read.  I think there were some challenges along the way that dragged the story out, but any romance reader will love this book!  I felt like I was a resident of their small community!  I’m having a “notion” right now that you will love this novel!  Enjoy! 

Reviewed by Jules

Copy supplied by Publisher

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