Tuesday, May 20, 2014

{Reviews} Ripple Effect Romance #1 - #2 Home Matters by Julie N. Ford & Silver Linings by Kaylee Baldwin

"Like a pebble tossed into calm water, a simple act can ripple outward and have a far-reaching effect on those we meet, perhaps setting a life on a different course—one filled with excitement, adventure, and sometimes even love." Ripple Effect Romance 

Genre: Women's' Fiction
Age group: Adult
Publication Date: March 10th 2014
Series: Ripple Effect Romance #1
Pages: 156
Format: Mobi/Kindle
Source: Provided by author for review

According to her mother, Olivia Pembroke was born to be a star. But how is she supposed to be famous when she can't even get a decent acting gig? Her lucky break comes when she lands an audition for a wildly popular home improvement show. Even though she has no design training and has never held a power tool, she refuses to let that stop her. She's confident that her destiny is finally within reach. When her affections are torn between her heartthrob co-host and the irritating, yet somehow endearing lead contractor, does she continue to reach for the stars? Or does she design a new happily ever after? One that leads not to the fading lights of fame and fortune, but to a love that will burn forever.

My Review:

Home Matters is the story of Olivia Pembroke. A Young woman chasing her dream to pursue an acting career and as a last resort auditions to star on a Home makeover show as the host. Her life until this point has been a series of disappointments as is the status quo in this industry. I can absolutely relate because I too have a career in the TV industry with hopes to break into film but with very little luck. That is what ultimately drew me to Olivia's story.

Olivia was a very ambitious woman who was determined to make a name for herself and make her mother proud. She's always dreamed of being an actress so when she gets the lead on Home Matters as the co host next to heartthrob William Blaine her dreams might be coming true. Once on set though, she discovers the daily goings on behind the scenes are not as glamorous as she always imagined and the people in this kind of business aren't all as friendly as she is. I really admired Olivia's character for following her heart despite the bleak outlook she faced in this business. She never quit trying or gave up even when things didn't go her away. I felt bad for her at times with the pressure her mother put on her to keep pursuing her acting. Even when she was seen out with William and her mother pushed her to continue seeing him even when she knew he wasn't a good guy.

 The only friend she seems to have is the shows resident contractor, Pete. The two meet under crazy circumstances after Olivia mistakes him for the janitor on the set during her audition. Pete was the best guy EVER! I fell so hard for him with everything he did. Pete was one of those guys that are genuinely amazing. He was laid back, sweet, kind, funny and sexy. I love a guy with a tool belt but the size of Pete's heart was what made me fall for him. He's still heartbroken over the loss of his fiance after a debilitating illness left her disabled. The reason that makes him so special is because he started a non profit organization to help families with disabled loved ones and renovates their homes at no charge. {Insert Sigh here}. Any man who has that much compassion is automatically a winner in my book. I loved the chemistry between Pete and Olivia. It's hard to believe that with as much smut as I read that an innocent kiss can warm me up but the chemistry between these two was fabulous!

Olivia is hiding a secret ability that Pete unknowingly uncovers when he finds her designing the current house they are working on as a way to relieve stress. She's butted heads with the actual show designer but Olivia knows what the couple actually wants but aren't getting with the real designer. When Pete sticks his nose in and puts her design into effect it throws Olivia's plans for a career as an actress in jeopardy. Home Matters was a sweet romantic little novella that kicks off this series of stories. I would have liked a Pete pov because at times Olivia could be a little too naive or stubborn and that drove me crazy but I did enjoy the book. I loved watching the relationship build up between her and Pete and the way things turned out for everyone, even the characters that ticked me off, was great. I'm excited to continue into the series and see how each character is introduced and developed throughout.


Pete shrugged. "Why waste your life chasing what will likely amount to no more than two minutes of fame when there are nobler causes out there worth pursuing?" He almost sounded genuine. "After all, love and fame can't live in the same place." Mobi/Kindle 15%

His lips took hers, the passion of his kiss drawing out her fury along with what was left of her breath. And for a space of time she couldn't possibly calculate, she lost herself on him all over again. In the feel of his heart beating against hers, the strength of his arms supporting her wilting body. No, she hadn't misremembered the way he'd made her feel the times they'd kissed before. It was as if the Fourth Of July and Chinese New year combined had erupted inside her. Mobi/Kindle 90%

About The Author:
Julie is a forty-something, dangerously close to becoming a fifty-something, graduate from San Diego State University with a BA in Political Science. In addition, she has a Masters in Social Work from the University of Alabama, which has only made her better able to recognize the unhealthy, codependent relationship she has with writing. Professionally, she has worked in teaching and as a marriage and family counselor. She is the author of four women’s fiction novels, including Count Down to Love, a 2011 Whitney Award finalist. When she’s not writing, she entertains delusions of being a master gardener, that is, when she’s not killing the unsuspecting plants in her yard with her good intentions. She lives outside of Nashville, Tennessee, with her husband, two daughters, a Betta named Bob, and a Scottish fold kitten, Ardweal.


Drew Westfall wants nothing more than to forget what he had to do in the name of "smart" business. Cutting off all ties with his parents-including handing over the entire contents of his trust fund to a charity-he takes off for Bridger, Colorado where his best friend has an extra room for him. It doesn't take long for him to realize that his business degree won't do him much good in a town as small as Bridger, but he's broke and has nowhere else to go. Eden Torresi has every reason to wallow. Not only did she have to sell her house to pay for her mother's medical expenses, but she had to drop out of school and is in a relationship with a guy unwilling to commit. But Eden isn't the wallowing type. Instead, she spends most of her time taking care of the seniors at Silver Linings Assisted Living. When she learns that her boyfriend's new roommate is down on his luck, she reaches out to offer what help she can. But the more time they spend together, the more complicated things get, especially when the seniors of Silver Linings decide to play matchmaker.

My Review:

Drew Westfall was a character that was introduced in Home matters after meeting Olivia and having a heartfelt discussion about the paths we take in life. Drew is the heir to a Hotel fortune his father started but has had a change of heart after a former employee loses his daughter when he was fired from the company and couldn't pay the hospital bills. Since then Drew has been on a soul searching mission to figure out what to do with his life. When he decides to give his fortune away to a non profit organization and start fresh his path takes him to Colorado to stay with his old college friend Jace.

My poor sweet Drew couldn't catch a break hardly at all throughout this novella. Arriving in town only to skid out and wreck his car he meets the beautiful and charming Eden only to discover she's dating his best friend. I fell in love with Drew from his first brief encounter in Home Matters and knew he would be a great guy. After giving away his fortune and living like the rest of us I was 100% sold on him. Drew had the biggest heart of any male character I have encounter lately and his passion for the "little guy" set him apart from other wealthy characters I've seen around. It wasn't just his heart and giving spirit but his selflessness in giving up something he never knew he could have just to spare his best friend was amazing. Developing feelings for Eden wasn't on his agenda but was something that couldn't be helped the closer the two became. It was magical to watch because they both brought out something in each other that they never let show.

Eden had a hard line to walk. Caring for her cancer sickened mother and giving up on her dream of becoming a nurse were just a few examples of the rough time she's had in life. What made me sad for her though was ca ring for a man and sticking by someone who didn't fully love you. She's been dating Jace for over a year with no real commitment in sight for them. I couldn't wrap my head around why she would stick around so long with his vague answers about their relationship but being stuck in a complacent spot in life can make even the most determined person stagnant. Jace was a guy I found myself really hating after a while. He wasn't willing to give Eden the commitment she needed but was all too happy to block his best friends attempts at having a connection with her. I am NOT looking forward to his story because like I said he was a complete jerk, but maybe I will change my mind when I find out what happened to make him so heartless feeling.

Drew and Eden were a great couple because they started out as friends. Although they had growing feelings for each other they were determined not to give in to the temptation to explore anything with Jace standing in their way. Watching them help each other out and give support to the other was something that made my heart melt. Drew helped Eden with her mother and in turn made a bond with her that formed another connection between them and Eden helped Drew overcome the pain and guilt he feels over the death of his employees daughter. Silver Linings was told in a dual point of view format and I really liked the fact that I got to know each character from their own words. I was sad to see the story end but the way everything worked for the good of the two of them was so wroth the wait. Silver Linings was fantastic and sweet with a mild triangle aspect that didn't bother me as much as this type of story usually does. So far I'm two books into the Ripple Effect romance novellas and I haven't been disappointed yet. 


She glanced up up at him, and Drew's breath caught in his throat. The sunlight kissed her pale hair, skin, and eyes, reminding Drew once again of an angel. She was so beautiful. So kind. And so taken. Mobi/Kindle 31%

When Drew held her, it was like she'd walked into her old house and was immediately wrapped in memories of a time when things had been easier, happier, and full of love. Mobi/Kindle 54%

About The Author:

I grew up in Mesa, Arizona, and graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in English literature. I currently live in southern Arizona with my husband, Jeremy, and our three children. When I am not writing, I enjoy reading, starting new craft projects, and spending time with my family. My first book, Meg's Melody, was published by Cedar Fort in 2010.


Home Matters is FREE on Amazon!


  1. Separate authors for a series? NEAT! Pete abs drew both sound like great book heroes, so it seems I would like this too. Great reviews!

  2. Neat idea. These both sound cute. I have a thing for Pete's and Drew's.


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