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The Vineyards of Champagne by Juliet Blackwell

Rosalyn works for a vineyard in Napa, California, and is told she has to go to Champagne, France.  Who wouldn’t want to go to Champagne, France – well…Rosalyn isn’t too excited about going.

On her flight over, Rosalyn meets Emma who has found letters from a soldier and a woman that corresponded during the war.  She asked Rosalyn to help her put all the letters together and to make some sense out of them, but Rosalyn declines the offer.  She said she has to do what her employer asked her to do.

When Rosalyn finds one of the letters in her bag that her Emma must have not picked up after they all fell to the floor, she becomes interested in the correspondence as she translates the letters through all the grime and worn out and unable-to-be translated words.

Rosalyn wishes she would have told Emma she would help her.  She could do that if she gets organized and finds the business card Emma had given her.

Translating these letters would be much more interesting than going from one local wine producer to the next trying to drum up business.

I tend to agree with Rosalyn….I would prefer dealing with the letters to uncover the past than dealing with wine makers.  I always enjoy books that have the characters finding items from the past that uncover secrets and a past life.

Readers get a marvelous glimpse of France’s quaint, cozy homes, the warmth of the French people, and the history of Champagne and how its citizens coped during the war.

If you love champagne, history lessons, learning about wine making in France, unraveling secrets, reading old letters, exploring old houses, meeting marvelous characters, and being treated to a terrific story line, do not miss reading THE VINEYARDS OF CHAMPAGNE.

Juliet Blackwell has given us another pull-you-in read.

THE VINEYARDS OF CHAMPAGNE will have you falling in love with the characters and the Champagne Region of France, and have you looking at how you need to focus on making yourself happy. 5/5

This book was given to me by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.


I am parterning with Danielle Kier of Penguin Random House for this giveaway.


JANUARY 15 – 22


The Better Liar by Tanen Jones


The opening page has Leslie finding her estranged sister, Robin. It definitely wasn’t a meeting she expected because her sister is dead.

Leslie needed to find her sister because according to their father’s will, they both have to appear together to receive their inheritance.

Leslie really doesn’t know what to do after seeing her sister, so she runs out of the building and comes up with the idea of not telling anyone her sister is dead. No one will know Robin is dead because she changed her name after she ran away ten years ago.

By coincidence, Leslie meets another girl, Mary, who looks like her sister, and another idea pops up after after meeting Mary.   Why not see if this girl will pretend she is Robin, and Leslie will share the inheritance with her.

The girls go back-and-forth and Leslie finally convinces Mary to pretend to be Robin. We find out that might have been the worst idea Leslie ever had.

We meet quite a few liars and characters keeping secrets in this book.

THE BETTER LIAR kept me reading because I wanted to find out what the characters were up to.

This book has a creative story line with twists and a great ending, but it was quite confusing.  3/5

This book was given to me by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

How Quickly She Disappears by Raymond Fleischmann

Living in Alaska was isolation enough, but having a total stranger show up one day and tell you that he knows where your sister who disappeared twenty years ago is was unreal.
Elisabeth and her sister Jacqueline tell their tale in alternating chapters of when they were children together and then today where Elisabeth tells her tale of being alone and without her sister even though she has a husband and daughter.  She never got over losing her sister.
Looking for her sister for twenty years was an obsession for Elisabeth and also someone else.
Her sister Jacqueline went missing when they were young and was never found.  The news this stranger had was unbelievable.
Could Elisabeth believe this stranger when he had just killed a man?
Could Alfred be the man who took Jacqueline?
Could Alfred be the man who lured Jacqueline with his gifts of money and travel tickets?
Could Elisabeth really be wasting her precious time with her daughter and husband while looking for clues and listening to Alfred’s story that he knows where Jacqueline is as he drew her into his schemes and away from her family?
Elisabeth made me nervous with her obsession with Alfred and how she was pulled into what he asked her to do to find her sister. Alfred was a manipulator.
Someone was hiding something, and Elisabeth seemed to be ruining her life for something she really wasn’t sure of.

HOW QUICKLY SHE DISAPPEARS was very well written with words that pulled you in and that had a gripping, mesmerizing, menacing tone.
HOW QUICKLY SHE DISAPPEARS will be enjoyed by historical fiction and mystery fans, readers who like secrets, readers who enjoy not really knowing the background of the characters and what makes them “tick,” and trying to figure it all out.
Will you be able to figure it all out?
Will you be able to handle the tension?
Will you be able to stop turning the pages? 5/5
This book was given to me by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

The Tenant by Katrina Engberg

A brutal murder in a building owned by an author who is writing a book with a similar story line causes her to be the main suspect.

Julie and her roommate Caroline live in a building owned by Esther de Laurenti, the author. Julie is murdered, and the murder has the entire police force baffled.

Nothing like this has ever happened in her building, and Esther can’t understand it.

The clues all seem to point to Esther, though, and especially since the murder scene and situation are similar to her book, but is it really Esther?  There are a number of possible suspects.

The victim and her family had a few secrets of their own, but would someone murder for those secrets?  And what all-around, complicated secrets they turned out to be.

The detectives, Anette and Jeppe, are on the case and seem to be relentless in their efforts to solve this crime. This detective team is very likeable and definitely add to the story line.

Many other things happen that will keep you reading every chance you get, and you will be thinking about the characters and the situations even when you aren’t reading.

Ms. Engberg’s writing flows nicely and keeps the story line moving and the interest high with all of the what if’s and possibilities.

Be aware that there are some upsetting situations and graphic descriptions.

THE TENANT is a book for those who enjoy being kept on the edge-of-your seat.

I hope to see more of this detective team and Ms. Engberg’s books.

Are you a good enough detective to solve this crime?  4/5

This book was given to me by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


All The Ways We Said Goodbye by Beatriz Williams, Lauren Willig, and Karen White

Three women, three different time periods, three different situations, but they all find the Ritz of Paris to be their comfort zone.

We meet Aurelie in 1914 who lived at the Ritz with her mother.  She needed to get away and had the perfect excuse.  She drove her fiancée to the front, and on her way back, her car was shot up.  She thankfully was near her father’s estate and walked there to only find she would be stuck there because the Nazis had arrived and had taken over the estate.

We meet Daisy in 1942 who was raised by her grandmother at the Ritz and who eventually helped her grandmother with the resistance.

Then we meet Babs in 1964 whose husband had been in the war and had befriended La Fleur who was a resistance fighter.  Babs wants to find out who La Fleur is since her husband called out her name a number of times before his death.  She also meets at the Ritz with an American lawyer who is also looking for La Fleur.

There are quite a few characters to keep straight, but the main characters are strong, brave, and very likeable.

Babs was my favorite…her story had me laughing at some of the things she did and said.
Aurelie’s story was the most interesting because of her situation but was the most upsetting.

I admired Daisy for what she was doing for the French Resistance, and enjoyed reading about another way things were secretly done.

The 3W’s did it again!!  ALL THE WAYS WE SAID GOODBYE is another marvelous, well-researched, difficult-to-put-down tale.

We readers are again treated to their detailed writing, terrific story line, and smooth transition from one author to the next, but have a notebook handy to keep all the characters straight.

Do not miss reading this gem.  5/5

This book was given to me by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

The Vanishing by Jayne Ann Krentz

A murder witnessed by Catalina and Olivia when they were teenagers has come to the surface after 15 years, and neither of the girls knows they are in danger.

Well…Catalina realizes something is up when Olivia is kidnapped.

The girls have a unique skill since an explosion in their town had occurred when they were teenagers….they have psychic abilities and see auras.

Hopefully their abilities will be able to save Olivia and will guide Catalina to her.

We follow the characters and the story line in this sleepy town of Fogg Lake that doesn’t have access to technology, and we meet many psychics and hope that Olivia is found.

I am not really into the paranormal genre, but there was enough suspense and mystery to keep my attention and to keep me reading.

Those readers who enjoy this genre will definitely be treated to an excellent book.  4/5

This book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


House On Endless Waters by Emuna Elon

Never go back to Amsterdam were words Yoel’s mother drilled into him, but she would never tell why.

When one of Yoel’s books was translated into Dutch, he and his wife needed to go to Amsterdam even though he felt guilty about defying his mother’s wishes.

While they were in Amsterdam, Yoel and Bat-Ami visited a Jewish museum, looked at some still films and saw his mother, his father, his sister, and himself in the films.

Yoel wondered why no one ever told him about this part of his life.  He had to ask his sister, and he HAD to find out.

We follow Yoel as he moves around Amsterdam in hopes of finding anything that will help him discover who he is.

His sister did help him with information, but he had to be there and see for himself as he unraveled the mystery of his life and his mother’s life.

The writing and story line are absolutely mesmerizing and beautiful as well as heartbreaking.  

HOUSE ON ENDLESS WATERS is a book that will stay with me because of its haunting beauty and its profound, thought-provoking story line.

Historical fiction fans will devour this book and the marvelous research Ms. Elon did with Amsterdam’s history and its part in WWII. 5/5

This book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.