The Roanoke Girls

The Roanoke Girls

by Amy Engel

279 Pages

March 2017fullsizeoutput_da

Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die.

After her mother’s suicide, fifteen year-old Lane Roanoke came to live with her grandparents and fireball cousin, Allegra, on their vast estate in rural Kansas. Lane knew little of her mother’s mysterious family, but she quickly embraced life as one of the rich and beautiful Roanoke girls. But when she discovered the dark truth at the heart of the family, she ran fast and far away.

Eleven years later, Lane is adrift in Los Angeles when her grandfather calls to tell her Allegra has gone missing. Did she run too? Or something worse? Unable to resist his pleas, Lane returns to help search, and to ease her guilt at having left Allegra behind. Her homecoming may mean a second chance with the boyfriend whose heart she broke that long ago summer. But it also means facing the devastating secret that made her flee, one she may not be strong enough to run from again.

As it weaves between Lane’s first Roanoke summer and her return, The Roanoke Girls shocks and tantalizes, twisting its way through revelation after mesmerizing revelation, exploring the secrets families keep and the fierce and terrible love that both binds them together and rips them apart. Goodreads Synopsis 

This book gave me very mixed feelings.  I love the way it is written, glimpses into the past, varying narrators and the skill of letting the reader know exactly what was happening without saying what was happening.

The subject matter was iffy.  I don’t want to give any spoilers away, but this family is disturbed and probably has a lot of triggers for some readers.

I would be very interested to read another book by Amy Engel, as I loved her writing.

3.5 stars

Thank you to Blogging for Books for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review.



The Weight of This World

fullsizeoutput_d9The Weight of This World

By David Joy

272 pages

March 2017

General Fiction

A combat veteran returned from war, Thad Broom can’t leave the hardened world of Afghanistan behind, nor can he forgive himself for what he saw there. His mother, April, is haunted by her own demons, a secret trauma she has carried for years. Between them is Aiden McCall, loyal to both but unable to hold them together. Connected by bonds of circumstance and duty, friendship and love, these three lives are blown apart when Aiden and Thad witness the accidental death of their drug dealer and a riot of dope and cash drops in their laps. On a meth-fueled journey to nowhere, they will either find the grit to overcome the darkness or be consumed by it. Goodreads Synopsis

Breaking Bad meets Moonshiners.  The Weight of This World is a beautifully written tragic tale of two friends in the Appalachian mountains, one trying all he can to get out of his poverty stricken community and a war vet who is just fine with the downward sprial he is living.

This was one of those books that I wanted to shake the characters by their shoulders and tell them to wake up and move out.  These people have zero in common with my life, yet the way that David writes, you feel as though these people live right down the street from you.

I highly recommend this book to fans of general literary fiction and the Breaking Bad TV series.

4 stars

Thank you to Penguins Read it First program for sending me a digital copy loan for review.

The Vicar’s Daughter

Blog Tour Image for The Vicar's Daughter

The Vicar’s Daughter by Jessi S. Kilpack

336 pages

Cassie, the youngest of six daughters in the Wilton family, is bold, bright, and ready to enter society. There’s only one problem: her older sister Lenora, whose extreme shyness prevents her from attending many social events. Lenora is now entering her third season, and since their father has decreed that only one Wilton girl can be out at a time, Cassie has no choice except to wait her turn.

Evan Glenside, a soft-spoken, East London clerk, has just been named his great-uncle’s heir and, though he is eager to learn all that will be required of him, he struggles to feel accepted in a new town and in his new position.

A chance meeting between Evan and Lenora promises to change everything, but when Lenora proves too shy to pursue the relationship, Cassie begins to write Mr. Glenside letters in the name of her sister. Her good intentions lead to disaster when Cassie realizes she is falling in love with Evan. But then Evan begins to court Lenora, thinking she is the author of the letters.

As secrets are revealed, the hearts of Cassie, Evan, and Lenora are tested. Will the final letter sent by the vicar’s daughter be able to reunite the sisters as well as unite Evan with his true love? Goodreads Synopsis


For an entire afternoon I was completely consumed by this book.  From the beginning, it is a pretty fast paced novel.  One of my favorite things about the book was the fact that it is simply a sweet love story, smut left out.  I can’t stand romance books that are just full of steamy love scenes, I want the romantic story and that’s exactly what this book is.  Plus, there’s the whole historical fiction aspect as well.  The characters were strong and it was easy to let yourself get into the story.

It’s not classified as a christian romance book, but after reading it, I’m thinking it has to be classified as one somewhere.  First off, there’s the title.  Historically, a vicar is a priest or member of the clergy.  There were a few mentions of God and the Bible.  It wasn’t overwhelming (maybe why it’s not classified as christian) I thought everything added to the story.

I would recommend this book to people who enjoy Christian romance or just a simply sweet love story.

4 stars

Thank you to Shadow Mountain Publishing for sending me a copy of The Vicar’s Daughter to review and be a part of their blog hop.