Engaged in Trouble: a book review

engaged in troubleDescription:

When a washed-up pop star inherits a wedding planning business, it’s all bouquets and bliss until a bride turns up dead.

Paisley Sutton shot to stardom as a teenage rock sensation, but ten years later that star has fizzled out, just like her bank account. When she unexpectedly inherits her aunt’s wedding planning business, Paisley leaves the glamour of Los Angeles for a charming small town in Arkansas. Thinking she’ll arrive in Sugar Creek and liquidate the moldly property, Paisley’s shocked to find Enchanted Events has experienced a major makeover and is now the place for brides. She’s got two months to keep Enchanted Events afloat if she wants to sell and rekindle her music career with the profits.

Paisley’s tossed into a world of vows and venues, but her most difficult challenge comes in the form of one demanding bride. When this Bridezilla’s found facedown in her cake, all fingers point to Paisley as the prime murder suspect. And she does not look good in prison orange.

This former pop princess will need the help of her gun-toting, ex-CIA grandmother and her handsome neighbor, Beau Hudson, to unravel the mystery and clear her good name. As she and her unruly posse dig into Bridezilla’s life, she discovers the woman had a long list of enemies. The closer Paisley gets to the truth, the more her own life is in danger.

Love is in the air this wedding season, but before Paisley can help the ladies of Sugar Creek say, “I do,” she’s got to unveil a killer. Or find herself the next target.

My Review: 

From the moment Paisley Sutton hits Sugar Creek with plans to sell off her great aunt’s old business, it’s just one mess after another. When the worst bridezilla ever (who just happens to belong to Paisley’s own very ex-fiance) is found murdered shortly after Paisley publicly threatens said ex-fiance with dire retribution – all evidence points to her. Not her wisest move, but he did wreck her career and publicly humiliate her. A little anger is to be expected, right? Too bad the cops don’t see it that way.

Loaded with heaping scoops of Jones’s trademark wit, Engaged in trouble is a fast paced ride from beginning to end.

Paisley is a fun heroine. She’s quirky, she’s flawed, she’s emotional, and doesn’t always learn the first time. But she won’t go down without a fight! Her determination is admirable, even when it’s aimed in the wrong direction.

Grandma Sylvie, the terrifying ex-CIA sister of Mad Maxine from the Katie Parker series, is probably the most fun character in the book. Though there are a lot of similarities between her and her sister, she is still her own character – and this one comes packing heat! Unable to fully leave behind the thrill of the “glory days” of her time in the CIA, she’s definitely not someone you want on your bad side, or probably even within fifty feet! Life is never dull wherever Sylvie or her stalwart partner Frannie are!

Beau on the other hand, is just meh in my opinion. Jones is great at writing zany small town adventures, and a mystery that keeps me guessing. I actually didn’t fully figure out whodunit until the characters did – which is unusual for me – but her romance has always felt a bit weak. I never connected with Beau at all, at some points I almost got a bit of a creepy vibe from him.

The only thing that kept this book from being a full five stars was some innuendo. Nothing explicit, but more than should have been seen in a Christian novel.

My Rating: four stars

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Heat Advisory:

Romance: Beau loves to make insinuations from everything Paisley says. Sylvie and Frannie meanwhile just insinuate for the sake of it, almost all the time. Aside from that, the romance itself was clean. Unfortunately, the innuendo makes this one a book I wouldn’t recommend to anyone younger than older teen/adult.
Language: clean
Drinking/Drugs: One character was found to be supplying another with subscription drugs.
Blood/violence: Not too much violence overall. There is a fire, and a murder that  happens off-page. Some blood is mentioned briefly at the crime scene.

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Happy Reading y’all!

Friday Freebies on Kindle!

Okay, here’s a small treat for all you kindle readers out there – Free books!

Always check prices before you buy. The books are on sale at the price mentioned at the time my post goes live, but they don’t always stay that way!

Click on a cover for the link to Amazon:

  1. Second Chance Ranch – Liz Isaacson

After his deployment, injured and discharged Major Squire Ackerman returns to Three Rivers Ranch, anxious to prove himself capable of running the cattle operation so his parents can retire. Things would be easier if the ranch wasn’t missing 1.6 million dollars, which forces Squire to hire Kelly, the girl who rejected his high school prom invitation, as his accountant.

She’s back in town with her four-year-old son, living in her parent’s basement until she can get her life back together. With fresh ink on her divorce papers and open gashes on her heart, she’s not ready for much beyond her new job on the ranch.

Squire wants to forgive Kelly for ignoring him a decade ago. He’d like to provide the stable life she needs, but with old wounds opening and a ranch on the brink of financial collapse, it will take patience and faith to make their second chance possible.

2. Surrender the Heart – Marylu Tyndall

Relive the rich history of the War of 1812 through the eyes of Marianne Denton and Noah Brenin, who both long to please their families but neither one wishes to marry the other. Noah is determined to get his cargo to England before war breaks out, and Marianne is equally determined to have a wedding so that her inheritance can be unlocked and her destitute family saved. When their stubborn games get them captured by a British warship, can they escape and bring liberty to their country—and growing love?

3. In Between – Jenny B. Jones

Can we overcome our past?

Katie Parker is about to get a new life—whether she wants one or not. With her mom in prison, and her father AWOL, Katie is sent to live with a squeaky-clean family who could have their own sitcom. She launches a full-scale plan to get sent back to the girls’ home when she finds herself in over her head…and heart. When Katie and her new “wrong crowd” get into significant trouble at school, she finds her punishment is restoring a historic theater with a crazy grandma who goes by the name of Mad Maxine. In the midst of her punishment, Katie uncovers family secrets that run deep, and realizes she’s not the only one with a pain-filled past. Katie must decide if she’ll continue her own family’s messed up legacy or embrace a new beginning in this place called In Between

4. The Dreamer – May Nicole Abbey

A dream in the night. A leap of faith. A quest for truth and treasure.

From term papers and instant coffee to blood-thirsty pirates and buried treasure, Rachel Madera, a gifted university professor, finds herself travelling through time on a journey of discovery and danger, all because of a simple dream. Despite the threat, Rachel is undaunted, certain she holds the keys to unlock the mystery of a Pharaoh’s treasure … and alter the course of history.

The only thing that stands between her and peril is Captain Mallory Tucker, a man with a tragic past and intractable moral code. Born of the sea, he is among the leading mariners of 18th century Europe. But the derelicts who make up his crew and the capriciousness of the ocean have taken their toll, and Captain Tucker is tired and jaded. The last thing he needs is a precocious young woman dropping onto his ship and creating havoc. But he’ll fight to the death for her honor, her beliefs…and her love.

5. The Light of Eidon – Karen Hancock

Book 1 of Legends of the Guardian King which follows the life of Abramm Kalladorne in his turbulent search for truth and self–a search that will transform him from a sickly, head-in-the-clouds youth to a legendary hero of strength and courage. Set in a world of swords and cloaks, of glittering palaces and mystical temples, of galley ships and ancient, mist-bound cities, his journey illustrates how God pursues and how He uses suffering to mold His children into something greater than was ever thought possible. Written by Karen Hancock, the acclaimed author of Arena.

6. Rehabilitation – C. B. Stone

“My name is Sinna Reardon. I suppose deep down I’d like to believe God exists. But he doesn’t, not since the war. Most days I’m OK with that. Jacob calls me a pessimist, but I’m a realist. How can I Believe when a place like Rehabilitation and a regime like the Elite exist, dictating our every move?

If God were so great, he’d do something. But he hasn’t. We’re forgotten. And that scares me, because it means I might have to do something myself…”

Sinna has spent her life walking a fine line between breaking the rules and obeying them to a fault. In a Godless world where science and logic reign supreme and people are punished for Believing, are friendship and love reasons enough to abandon unbelief? Enough to put her faith in something bigger than herself?

7. Submerged  – Dani Pettrey

A sabotaged plane. Two dead deep-water divers.

One single clue.

Bailey Craig vowed never to set foot in Yancey, Alaska, again. She has a past, and a reputation–and Yancey’s a town that doesn’t forget. She’s returned only to bury a loved one killed in the plane crash, but then dark evidence emerges and Bailey’s own expertise becomes invaluable for the case.

Cole McKenna can face dangerous rescue dives. He can face the fear a murderer may be threatening his town. But facing the reality of Bailey’s reappearance is a tougher challenge. She broke his heart…but doesn’t seem to be the same girl who left Yancey ten years ago. And he’s not the same guy she left behind.

Racing against the clock and a rising body count, Bailey and Cole must move beyond the hurts of their pasts to work together until the truth of what is hidden in the depths finally surfaces.