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Sunday, July 29, 2018

Above All and His Hands by Rebecca Brooks - Book Reviews, Guest Post & Giveaway

Reviews by Suze

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Casey left New York with a broken heart. She found a safe haven in the small mountain town Bonnet. There she works at a lakeside campsite. She loves spending time outdoors and can’t get enough of painting the beautiful view. She lives a solitary life, but feels much less alone than with the author she used to live with. Casey isn’t looking for love, but when Ben and his friends visit the campsite, she’s tempted. He’s several years younger, but they do have a connection. Ben is on his way to become a successful chef and his life is in the city, will they even have a chance to get to know each other?

Ben has a demanding family. His parents have certain standards and he’s supposed to meet them. He isn’t free to do as he pleases, but he can’t stay away from Casey. Whenever he has time off he goes back to Bonnet. Their time together is limited, but they make sure every minute counts. Ben is almost ready to start his career and a lot is being asked of him. Where will he end up working and what will the next step in his life mean for his relationship with Casey? If he has to choose between expectations and love, what will it be?

Above All is a sexy emotional love story. Casey’s ex-boyfriend hurt her a lot and Bonnet offered her the fresh start she so desperately needed. She feels right at home and never wants to leave. She’s a talented and smart woman and she knows what she wants. She loves spending time in the mountains, she isn’t a city girl and enjoys each second of her outdoor life. I loved how Rebecca Brooks makes Casey's dreams and wishes come to life and I could easily picture her paintings. I loved how passionate she is. She has that in common with Ben. Casey is creative with paint and Ben is a prodigy in the kitchen. They share a terrific vibrancy and unique understanding of the world. Finding out if they’d be able to combine their wishes and dreams kept me glued to the pages.

Rebecca Brooks has a wonderful descriptive writing style. She makes her gorgeous setting come to life very well. I loved Bonnet, it’s a stunning choice for a love story. I liked the complexity of the city versus mountains situation. It's a dilemma that gives the story a nice layer of depth. Rebecca Brooks clearly understands each phase her main characters are going through and skillfully works with tension. There’s plenty of chemistry and sparks fly off the pages. I loved the combination of an amazing setting, a terrific true love story, the wisdom of life, fabulous romance and mouthwatering food. I highly recommend Above All, it’s a hot, charming, moving and fascinating book.

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Anna is a hardworking single mother. She’s a skilled baker and her blackberry pies are famous. Anna is living in a small town and meeting someone interesting isn’t a priority, she's too busy for love. When a wandering gardener starts working on the grounds surrounding the café she works at, Anna is immediately intrigued. Is there a chance Anna and Deegan can spend some lovely time together before he leaves again? 

Deegan is a free spirit. He’s a few years older than Anna and lives wherever he works, he travels around looking for available landscaping jobs. He loves his easy lifestyle, but that doesn’t mean he won’t make time for a special woman when she enters his life. Anna makes Deegan’s heart beat faster, can they create some magic while he’s there?

His Hands is a wonderful romantic story. Anna is a talented and kindhearted woman. She’s a skilled baker and a terrific mother, but she doesn’t have much of a private life. Deegan is exactly what she needs and sparks fly when they meet. They have a gorgeous connection and I couldn’t wait to find out if spending time together would bring them the happiness they both deserve. 

Rebecca Brooks knows how to write hot romance. She doesn’t need many words to describe a connection. She understands emotions and knows how to use them for her stories. I liked the combination of delicious pies and delightful chemistry and read His Hands in one sitting. It's sweet, sexy, entertaining and delicious.


If you love sexy romantic stories with beautiful settings the Heart of the Adirondacks stories would be a perfect choice. They can easily be read as standalones.

About Rebecca Brooks

Rebecca Brooks lives in New York City in an apartment filled with books. She received a PhD in English but decided it was more fun to write books than write about them.

She has backpacked alone through India and Brazil, traveled by cargo boat down the Amazon River, climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, explored ice caves in Peru, trekked to the source of the Ganges, and sunbathed in Burma, but she always likes coming home to a cold beer and her hot husband in the Bronx.

She likes outdoorsy guys with both muscle and heart and independent women ready to try something new.

Feel free to contact me, or for more info and updates, check out the News page.


Finding “Above All”
Guest post by Rebecca Books

My ideas for books always begin with the smallest kernel, and the one that launched Above All came from my dissertation. I know that sounds incredibly unsexy, but bear with me! As I got to the end, I struggled with what to say in the acknowledgements. How do you thank the people who have put so much into supporting you, without sounding like a total sap?

I tried to keep it short but sweet, especially when it came to thanking my husband, who I met when I was in graduate school and who had seen me through coursework, orals, and the dissertation itself; we got married when I was in the middle of writing the first draft. So he deserved more than just a casual thanks!

At the end of the acknowledgements, I wrote:

Above all, thanks to Robert for being my sounding board through every step of this project, and for providing me with books, articles, suggestions, encouragement, ideas, chocolate, and perspective. Thank you for not asking “What did you do today?” but rather, “What did you discover?”

I was worried it wasn’t enough. But as soon as he read it, he looked at me and said, “Am I really your above all?” Of course the answer was yes! I realized I didn’t need to write some big long thing about everything he’d done for me. Those two little words, thanking him “above all,” captured it all.

That could have been it, but his question got me thinking. I started imagining someone looking for their own “above all”—someone who’d be theirs above all else. I wondered who this heroine would be, why she was currently single, why she wanted a partner, who her ideal man would be...and what challenges they’d face on the way to happily ever after.

I also had to think about what would make her think about love in terms of those words: above all. Not surprisingly, the answer came in the form of reading the acknowledgements to a book. But because I’m a writer, I got to have fun changing things around from real life—and making the writer the evil ex!

In the novel, Casey reads the acknowledgements to her ex-boyfriend’s new hit novel and realizes that despite all the work she did to help him when they were together, he thanks another woman “above all.” It’s of course a change from the acknowledgements I wrote, but it spurs Casey to think about losing love, finding love, and living her best life on her terms.

Initially, Casey thinks the idea of an “above all” is bs. Who does her ex think he is?!? But as she and Ben fall for each other, she realizes there might be some truth to it. Not that Ben is flawless, or that their relationship is always going to be perfect. But that they belong together, above all.


One very lucky reader of With Love for Books will receive a digital copy of His Hands: A Heart of the Adirondacks Novelette and a digital book of choice from Rebecca Brooks’s backlist.

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.


  1. Beautiful covers. They both sound great and I love books with strong female characters.

  2. Both books sound like enjoyable and engrossing love stories.

  3. Sounds like books I could really enjoy! Excellent covers as well! Thank you very much for such a great review!

  4. Looks like another awesome release from a great author!

  5. Thanks for the awesome reviews!

  6. Wow, look at the cover. I want to read them just based on that lol. But seriously, a strong female character who has been through a bit with her ex sounds a great idea and do love the plot.

  7. This review makes the novel Above All sound like a wonderful, healing romance set in a wonderful landscape. I'm sure I'd enjoy reading this book. His Hands is another wonderful romance, I can almost smell the baking and see the beautiful gardens being created.

  8. I enjoyed reading this guest post, it's always amazing how big things can develop from a mere kernel.

  9. Rebecca really does know how to do sweet and sexy!