November 25, 2015

The Wedding Chapel

The Wedding Chapel
by Rachel Hauck

I read all of the Royal Wedding series by Hauck and loved them so I was really excited to read another "wedding" book by Hauck.

Unfortunately this book almost lost me with the first chapter. I really had to force myself to keep reading. In the end the story was good I just don't usually keep reading books that take me a third of the book to get into.

I also don't usually read books that jump around as much as this one did. I find it very hard to concentrate on books that jump back and forth between two different time periods and two different people's points of view let alone a book like this one that told the story from four different character's perspectives in two different times.

The charming story of why the chapel was built was a great read though. I did appreciate that in the end the chapel brought love back into people's lives. I also liked how it brought forth honesty in relationships. I always like books where struggling relationships work out so that was another great quality of this book.

All in all this book was good, but not a new favorite of mine.

I received a digital copy of this book through the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

November 22, 2015

The Captive Imposter...and links to giveaways!

The Captive Imposter
by Dawn Crandall

Two ways to win a copy:

Through Goodreads:

or through Dawn's blog:

Another great book from Dawn Crandall! This is her third book and while technically you could read it without reading books one and two I really wouldn't advise it. You understand so much more about the characters if you read them in order!

As I read more and more from Crandall I realize how much I love her writing but I especially love the titles of her books. They fit so perfectly with her books! Sometimes titles seem to me as if they were an afterthought or just something to throw on the cover but with Crandall's work I truly feel the titles were meant for the books.

I really fell in love with Dexter in this book. He really is the perfect hero who is patient, kind, loving, protective, and strong. Oh, and a good preacher too! The only downside in my opinion to his character was his lack of flaws. But I do occasionally love a book where the guy is "perfect." Elle is a wonderful addition to Crandall's heroines. I appreciated her flaws and her doubts and enjoyed watching her learn to love and trust again especially as her spiritual life improved.

The relationship between Dexter and Elle in this book is quite intriguing. Definitely a good example of how hard it is for men and women to be "just friends" and I must admit if they had actually pulled off "just friends" I would have been disappointed. I loved watching their friendship evolve into love especially in the awkward moments! Those moments made the story seem more realistic.

This book was nearly impossible to put down. I was on edge waiting to see what would happen with Elle and if she would be kept safe. I also couldn't wait to see if I would discover a happily ever after ending. If you love historical romance with just a touch of suspense this book is a great read.

The author provided me with an advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.

November 19, 2015

2nd and 3rd Hello Fresh meals

I decided to combine my reviews of my 2nd and 3rd meals. If you are interested in trying Hello Fresh you can use this code: 99482G to get $40 off your first box!

Chicken Schnitzel Sandwiches.

I learned a few things with this meal.

  1. I prefer my coleslaw to have more green than red cabbage.
  2. I tried shallots for the first time. And I couldn't tell a difference from onion?
  3. Pumpernickel bread isn't my favorite.
  4. Coating chicken breast with mayo before dredging makes it yummy and moist...but flour alone isn't that great. I think I'd still prefer breadcrumbs.
I still love that everything is all neatly boxed and ready to go.
this box wasn't missing any ingredients. But I didn't use the cayenne pepper because I don't do spicy.

Finished product.

Teriyaki Glazed Meatballs 

This came with 10 oz. of ground beef.
This box included all of the ingredients too! The soy sauce came in cute little containers! But the carrots were kind of puny. They were hard to peel because they were so thin. And in my opinion there wasn't enough Panko for 10 oz of meatballs. I guess I like my meatballs with a little more breading in them.

Finished product. The rice was really good. I cheated and made it in my rice cooker because it is by far my favorite kitchen wedding present! The cole slaw would have been better if they had included some green cabbage.

 My review of the Teriyaki-Glazed meatballs:

Meatballs are for spaghetti. I did NOT like this Asian inspired theme. And I wasn't impressed with the meatball recipe either - especially the cook time they listed. It takes a lot longer than 13-15 minutes to bake meatballs. I have a recipe I love for those and I'll continue to make those. I also tend to make those in huge batches and then freeze them to pull out when we don't want to cook much and just throw pasta and Ragu together.

The Teriyaki glaze was okay. Eric tried it and agreed that it would be better over chicken. But he only had one bite. After I ate my plate I decided it was too sweet. I would make it again but I would only use half of the honey it called for I think.

Overall thoughts:

For the discounted price of $29 IF I had liked all three meals it would have been a great deal. Since I really only liked one meal I'm not sure it was totally worth it. However, I would make the first meal again on my own and I would make the teriyaki glaze in a modified format again so it wasn't a complete loss. I might try a box again after the holidays. Or I might try one of the other companies out there to see how they compare.

Hope you enjoyed these reviews.

This review is NOT endorsed by Hello Fresh. I chose to write this review all on my own and purchased the discounted box myself.