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REVIEW: The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert
Category: JUST A GIRL
Tags: the sixth extinction climate fiction elizabeth kolbert book reviews

It is apparent Kolbert invested hours upon hours, as well as, endured uncomfortable physical duress to explore all the research that went into this work. Kolbert takes you across the globe where she consults with paleontologists, herpetologists, geologists, stratigraphists, and astrophysicists who are all diligently working to understand the past five great extinctions, as well as the current great extinction period - ours.

Of all the ideas mankind adopts and the ingenuity we possess as a species it is baffling how little society does to ensure mankind's existence. The Sixth Extinction explores the acidification of the oceans, the mass extinctions that have occurred since the Industrial Revolution, the effects of carbon on the world, the impact of deforestation on vital habitats, and history's lessons of extinction rates. Kolbert did all the leg work so that we have a clear picture in one book of what took scientists hundreds of years to amass. Like an intricate puzzle, Kolbert refreshingly explains how the web of life interlocks, how species depend upon each other, and how the most destructive species-mankind-is exacerbating the rate of extinction to unparalleled levels.

When you and I are gone, when both the people who agreed and laughed at Ms. Kolbert are long dead, somewhere in the dust of the world we know now, some thing will find a copy of this book and shake their head that we had all the answers and did nothing.

The Sixth Extinction is not a conspiracy theory or overzealous hypothesis, but a collection of the hard work of people who are actually sensible enough to realize the world only allows every species a small window on this planet, to include mankind. Kolbert objectively explains how mankind is closing their own window and the windows of thousands of others species on this ever-changing planet.

REVIEW: The Beast of Beswick by Amalie Howard
Category: JUST A GIRL
Tags: romance beauty and the beast review Amalie Howard
I can't pass up a Beauty and the Beast adaptation. While this never claimed to be and strays far from that storyline, it certainly satisfied that love of B&B I hold. Charming, sexy, fun, suspenseful, and gallant. It was everything I look for in a historic romance. My first read by Howard and it didn't disappoint.

The damsel in the novel takes a bold move in an effort to save her sister from being forced to marry a lecher. While her proposition is unwanted by the Duke of Beswick, he soon feels obligated to protect her and finds it more and more difficult to keep his distance from the innocent beauty who needs his help and doesn't seem to mind his scars or his foul temper.
Highly recommended!
The Kindle edition is 384 pages.†
You can find it on Goodreads here.†
REVIEW: Highland Fire by Tanya Anne Crosby
Category: JUST A GIRL
Tags: highland fire guardians of the stone tanya anne crosby review historic romance scottish romance

After reading Crosby's Highland Brides series, I was hooked and happy to find yet another of her series that centers around 12th century Scotland. Highland fire is full of fascinating folklore, treachery, personal struggle, and enticing sexual attraction.

It is a suspenseful historic romance about a woman named Lileas who is forced to wed a reclusive pecht warrior, Aidan dun Scoti. As if an arranged marriage isn't difficult enough, her father murdered his parents. She isn't expecting much from Aidan other than perhaps him killing her on site and is unsure why he even agreed to the arrangement.

Two people desperate for peace in their lives and country - it is the story of personal challenges, mythic Scot legends, and political struggles that result in a well-deserved romance. People often turn their nose up at romance, but this is a story with bones. The romance is just a plus. Ms. Crosby's characters have life breathed into them in a way I have never seen. And her description paints a vivid Scottish village without boring the reader to death with explanations or unnecessary details. I love when a book can transport me and Highland Fire certainly did that. The character building also sets this up to be an entertaining series that worms the characters into your heart. I am already rooting for them all and anticipating what their fates will be.

Review: The Noble Guardian by Michelle Griep
Category: JUST A GIRL
Tags: the noble guardian michelle griep historical romance historic romance english romance

I had 3 favorite authors before I read this book; I now have 4.† An absolutely charming historical romance packed with suspense and finite details of 1800s England.

Abigail is fleeing a loveless home, being pushed onto the first suitor that offered her father his hand. Her journey to meet the baronet that will soon be her husband is thwarted at every turn by dangers and heartaches of the harsh realities of 1800s England. Samuel Thatcher has counted the days when he can leave his service as a magistrate, battling brutal highwaymen that leave a wake of death and agony in their path on the heath. Circumstance drops Abigail and a favor to a friend that he cannot refuse in the pathway to his dreams, ensuring his nightmare is not yet over. Michelle Griep tests each of her characters time and again making for an eye-opening emotional journey from start to finish.

The Noble Guardian is comparable to a PG version of Johanna Lindsayís historical romances spliced with Les Miserables, and Gaskellís North and South. Classed a Christian Romance, thereís no need as the religious undertones are merely true to the time and only bolster the fact that Ms. Griep is a master of time-warping a reader to another era. The time-relevant dialogue is transfixing and Griep paints a picture around every corner that puts you in the heart of early 19th century England, riding a carriage, and eating kidney pie. I canít say enough wonderful things about this story - the pacing, description, plot, historical accuracy, the character evolution, the drama and suspense - it was an honor to read it. Beautiful - an adventure of misery and compassion on the open-roads of historical England.

Thank you to Barbour Publishing and NetGalley for providing me with this early reviewer copy.†

Review: The Perfect Catch by Joanne Rock
Category: JUST A GIRL
Tags: joanne rock the perfect catch texas playmakers series tule publishing

A caretaker job in peaceful Last Chance, Texas seems like the perfect escape to Josie Vance who wants to make a new start after being swindled by a con man and taken for granted by her unstable mother. She settles into her new role looking after the gardens and home of one of the wealthy Ramsey family members and finds contentment as she plans how to keep employed after the summer job is over. Life has promise and order until an unwanted houseguest shows up - Cal Ramsey, the MLB star son of her employer.† Just cut from his team, his career prospects bleak, Cal has more than enough time on his hands to discover what secrets the attractive caretaker is holding so dear. Determined to protect the family heís neglected for his career from whatever Josie is hiding, Cal is also determined sheís affair-worthy material while heís stuck in career limbo with nothing to do but watch the attractive caretakerís every move.

This is the first book I have read by Joanne Rock and I would be happy to read more. Her dialogue is effortless, natural, effective, and keeps the story going. Lovable, believable characters that make the reader wonder whatís coming next. The Perfect Catch is a fun, page-turning flirtation with an eye-opening look into the life of professional baseball players. While the romantic relationship isnít greatly developed, The Perfect Catch is still delightfully light and airy, good for an afternoon distraction from reality. The scenic details and minute actions of the characters transport the reader to the idyllic town of Last Chance and the Ramsey homestead. Fans of Diane Palmer will enjoy Joanne Rock and the foreshadowing of whatís to come for the Ramsey brothers in the Texas Playmakers series.

The Perfect Catch by Joanne Rock releases 9 May 2019, Tule Publishing.

Happy reading!

Drea Damara is the author of the Blinney Lane series, book reviewer, and occasional blogger of useless information.†

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When everyone else fails to bring her daughter home from a high-powered human-trafficking ring, a widowed mother determines what she must do to rescue her child.

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