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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

BLOG TOUR: At the River's Edge by Mariah Stewart + CONTEST!

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers…the place to be when you’re in need of something new, something exciting, something you may not have picked up off the shelf otherwise; no worries, we’ve got you covered.

Speaking of “not picking up otherwise”, today’s blog tour guest (AND BOOK BIRTHDAY celebrant) definitely falls into that category…at least for this reader.  As many of you know, I’ve only more recently begun exploring the Romance genre.  Sounds corny or prude-ish, I know, but I’m not a fan of “too much” in a novel and the classic definition of a Romance novel to me, screams of this…not to mention the covers, the titles, etc.  How can I be blamed for my assumption…fully at least?  Am I right?  *waits for response*  Of course…and not just because it’s me either.  (^-^) Once again those who are frequent readers here will remember the appearance of some of my more recent dabbles here and there, as well as my surprise as to their actual content for both better and worse.  Today’s pick, definitely for the better!  Coming to us via TLC Book Tours, today’s blog tour guest and book of choice is…


Okay, so I was going to go with the usual “about the book”  section here, but realized after placing it just so, it told a wee tad more than I myself wanted to reveal.  Yep.  So, for today, we’ll go with a slightly more heavy air of mystery as we shine the light on this wonderful read…because it truly was wonderful.

Though classified as a Contemporary Romance, I wouldn’t be hard pressed to shelf it among the Women’s Fiction reads either.  How come?  I’ll tell you…..because though there is a personal relationship or two within the novel, that’s not what it’s solely about or even primarily.  What it’s really about it finding out balance in life.  Discovering the “we” that we are meant to be, rather than the version of us that is purely expected.  It’s great to fall into line with the family business, being a lawyer is certainly a respectable career, but if you’re afforded the chance to not only make a living but also BE HAPPY….who wouldn’t take that?  Thus we being our tale…

Sophie Enright, our leading lady, is thrown a massive curve ball in the shape of a two-timing boyfriend who, if truth be told, just isn’t cutting it as her forever option.  I know the opening scenes are not the best for the characters involved but wouldn’t you know it, they totally endeared them to my heart…well, at least her; him, not so much.  Her reaction was realistic but also hilarious and I loved how even in the heat of the moment, she couldn’t bring herself to harm an innocent book.  (Page 9…read it, you won’t be sorry!)  Despite it being a time she’d rather forget, we actually have this butt head former beau to thank because without his indiscretion, Sophie would not have been motivated to try something new. 

Now, her new personal challenge is not something the family is exactly behind as far as support; in their minds, lawyers breed lawyers and with her father having been such a disappointment, her success was the bright shiny penny in their loafers.  Her challenge, her commitment is not only to aiding her brother in unburying the family’s law firm from paperwork Hades, but to have her own restaurant.  Nothing fancy, just  a local joint that she could call her own and maybe the town would be inclined to as well.  Thing is about dreams, sometimes they come true with a little hard work and an awful lot of faith.  Will Sophie’s?  That’s not for me to say….but then again, that’s not the only thing she has worth fighting for.  Enter Jason Bowers….

He would be our leading man whether or not he became tangled up in Sophie’s story.  He has a tale all his own that I shan’t lay bear at the moment, but suffice it to say that the school of hard knocks gave him a great big WHACK on several occasions and yet…he’s still coming back for more.  He is a generous soul with a heart of gold even if he can be stubborn as a mule at times (he’s a guy…need I say more?).  With his local business keeping the community visually appealing, a gentle helping hand to lend to those in need, and a heart growing fonder of this small town with every passing day, it’s easy to see that Jason Bowers is a keeper…it doesn’t hurt that he’s easy on the eyes too.  (^_^)  Only problem?  Stubborn pride.  Who has to deal with it?  Well, himself of course…but also our leading lady.  That’s right!  It’s one of those occasions where love was the last thing on either of their minds and yet, here it is…live and in living color, if only they can hold on to it.  *le sigh*

Aside from the stories and characters already made note of above, there is a whole town of colorful folks just waiting to be discovered.  From the local business owners that while one might assume would be leery of possible competition moving in on their turf, are more than happy to lend a hand if the chance presents itself, to a family tree coming to life right before our eyes.  Sophie’s grandfather, Curtis, is a formidable man but with a tender heart that beats strong and true for who else…his family; that doesn’t only include blood relations either.  Violet, dear friend to Curtis but also his late wife Rose (two parts of the Blossoms as they called themselves in their youth) and a relation by association, is a permanent fixture around the Enright & Enright offices.  She knows who’s who, what’s what, and is ready to help in any capacity she is humanly capable of…we’ll leave the super human aspect to Rose who may have passed on physically but the lingering Gardenia scent around her home every now and then, begs otherwise.  I liked her attitude towards life and her spunk.  She struck me as a woman not to be ignored but not in the looming gloom and doom sense, just someone you’d rather have ON your side.  *ahem*  Then there’s Jesse and Brooke, her brother and his fiancé, Logan, Jason’s nephew, Grace and….well, I think you get the picture.

Author Mariah Stewart
In short, a story that will touch both your mind and your heart, inviting you back for another visit as soon as the opportunity presents itself.  It tells of life, love, family, and all the heart we lose and gain along the way.  It’s a reminder that dreams can come true, but they often need a little help from us to be realized…and all the hard work put into it, makes it that much sweeter in the end.  Though several books into this particular series, it reads perfectly fine as a standalone…or as an introduction because the first six books are now on my “to read” list and book eight is coming soon according to the last pages of this one.  (YAY!) Recommended read for Contemporary Romance fans as well as those more into Women’s Fiction. 

Review copy received courtesy of Lisa at TLC Book Tours.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this tour as well as those forth coming, be sure to stop by the official site, like them on Facebook or catch up on Twitter.  This title is available now via Ballantine Books, a division of Random House, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf near you.  Now for the piece de resistance….'s CONTEST TIME!

Thanks to the generosity of TLC Book Tours and Ballantine Books, YOU have the chance to win a copy of this title to call your own!  All you have to do is submit your information below and you’re in it to win it.  Entries accepted today through midnight CST, February 7th, 2014.  US entries only, no P.O. Boxes please.  Of course…if you’d like some EXTRA ENTRIES, you’ll be afforded the opportunity.  Just check out the form for all the details.

Until next time…GOOD LUCK…and happy reading!


Tracy Terry said...

This sounds like the kind of book in which the characters will become to seem like friends if not family. Great review, thanks for the recommendation.

Gina R said...

Tracy: My pleasure! ^_^

heathertlc said...

I live near the Chesapeake Bay so I know I need to read this series!

Thanks for being on the tour.

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