Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Charming the Troublemaker by Pepper Basham

Posted November 15, 2017 by meezcarrie in Christian, contemporary, giveaway, Pepper Basham, romance / 52 Comments

about the book

When Dr. Alex Murdock is demoted to a university in rural Virginia, the last thing he expects to find is a future. But country charm never looks as good as it does on Rainey Mitchell.

Rainey Mitchell doesn’t need a high-class flirt in her wounded world, but trouble and temptation waft off the new professor as strong as his sandalwood-scented cologne.

When circumstances thrust them together to save her tutoring clinic, can the troublemaker find the hero inside and encourage the reticent Rainey to open her heart again.

Basham is a talented author and writes her books with heart and soul, and with plenty of humor to balance the book. – RT Book Reviews

A well-written love story filled with suspense, mystery, and a loving family.” ~ Library Journal Review

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SERIES: Mitchell’s Crossroads #2
GENRE: Inspirational Contemporary Romance
PUBLISHER: Bling! Romance
RELEASE DATE: November 1, 2017
PAGES: 310

Other Books In This Series

He had ‘flirt’ tattooed all over his high-watt grin.

I have one word for you: Underoos.

Okay two more: #AdorkableAlex (does it count as one or two when it’s a hashtag?)

And now I flail. Because no review in the world can do justice to how funny and sassy and SWOONY and sweet this story really is. Ok… a couple I’ve read came pretty close. (I’m looking at you, Chautona Havig! Still laughing) But it’s just truly impossible for anyone to describe the hilarity, the heart, the KISSES that make Charming the Troublemaker so … well…charming 🙂

Rainey is the new-best-friend-you-wish-lived-next-door, her sass and strength and sweetness making her one of my fave Pepper Basham heroines (second only to Eisley Barrett of ‘I’ve squished a grandpa’ fame). Her daughter Sarah is completely adorable in every way possible, and when Sarah and Alex share the page they steal the show – and your heart – without even trying. (oh be still my heart, the My Little Pony cutie mark scene) And then there’s Rainey and Alex together… just go ahead and clear your calendar (and your freezer) because you will be riveted to the page with their heart-melting chemistry and need-a-freezer-or-snowdrift-stat kisses! Whooeee! Pepper Basham’s trademark ‘closet kisses’ do not disappoint in this book either!

And the HUMOR. Oh my stars, I still have not recovered from the previously mentioned underoos scene. Makes me laugh out loud just thinking about it. It’s not just the laugh-out-loud moments though that make Pepper Basham’s wit so enjoyable. It’s the little comment tucked away in this sentence, or the subtle romcom movie reference in that one, or an unexpected turn of a phrase that has you still chuckling long after you’ve left that scene behind.

But there’s also such a heartwarming tone to this novel. From Rainey’s self-worth and trust issues to Alex’s vulnerable side & his search for his inner hero to Sarah’s adorable sweetness … to Mama Mitchell’s words of wisdom. It all bundles together in a warm hug that whispers, “You are loved by God.”

Um…and hello Pepper Basham, suspense writer! She (and Rainey) can wield an iron skillet for more than just good ole’ Appalachian cooking! Excellent action scenes that will have your heart in your throat and your breath on hold.

Bottom Line: Pepper Basham has mastered the combination of humor, heat, and heart. And Charming the Troublemaker is a perfect example! Sit down on the front porch and relax a spell. Have a piece of Mama Mitchell’s lasagna, a mug of Daphne’s hot chocolate (with whipped cream & chocolate syrup), and a spare glass of sweet tea just in case. Laugh with Rainey, battle inner dragons with Alex, and watch an episode of My Little Pony with Sarah. You may even get roped into lighting a fire with Reese 😉 or mending fences with Trigg or sledding down the hill with Emma. What you will do for sure is enjoy a delightful story that warms you from the inside out! Can a flirt transform into a hero? Oh yes… indeed.

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 5 stars / Fabulous!

KissingBook Level: 5 / Find the nearest freezer before reading this one!

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about the author

Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes novels inspired by her love for history and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Her Penned in Time series has garnered recognition in the INSPYs, Grace Awards, and the ACFW Carol Awards. Her contemporary romance novel, A Twist of Faith, received 4-stars from Romantic Times, and most recently, her newest release, Just the Way You Are, received a Top Pick from RT with 4 ½ stars. Her newest contemporary romance, Charming the Troublemaker, releases in November 2017.

website | The Writer’s Alley | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram

More Contemporary Romance by Pepper Basham


I have a thing for underdogs.


Lots souls who desperately need to find where they belong.

I can’t help it! Call it a ‘fix-it’ mentality or an awareness that God rescued me and now I want to rescue other people…even fictional characters, but I’m definitely a softy for those characters that people are less likely to root for. Catherine from The Thorn Bearer/Keeper became my first rescue…and I just HAD to find another.

I guess that’s how Charming the Troublemaker came into existence.

Dr. Alex Murdock desperately needed to be rescued.

In a bad way.

If you’ve had a chance to read my first book in the Mitchell’s Crossroads series, A Twist of Faith, you’ll know that Alex doesn’t seem to be made up of much hero material. He’s a flirt, a little arrogant, and…well, kind of like a lost puppy.

As book 1 grew and came to a close, I knew Alex and Rainey’s story would be next…but I immediately ran into a real problem.

Who in the world was Alex Murdock? We really didn’t get to know him very much in book 1. He zoomed in a few times, ruffling feathers and then finally showing off some interesting kindness/compassion in the end, but…he was still a big-time flirt.

So the question emerged: Can a flirt be a hero?

What is Alex hiding behind that ready smile and sense of humor? Why does he seem so lost?

The answers were surprising!! Just wait.

The Mitchell family draw him right in, as they did with Dee, and his world is forever changed.

And then there’s Rainey. Strong-willed and independent, she is deeply wounded by her ex-husband’s betrayal. Though she gives off all these ‘confident’ vibes, she hides her insecurities behind a tough exterior in a desire to keep people at a distance – well, everyone except her family.

Alex rocks her world with his ready charm.

And she sees beyond the plastic grin to recognize another wounded soul.

Throwing them together into a book has been a hilarious and heart-stirring adventure, I wasn’t prepared to encounter. They’re so much fun!

AND…he’s ADORKABLE!! Seriously!! He is SUCH a dork, but makes me grin. And…he looks like Armie Hammer ?

Let me just give you a hint to some of my favorite scenes:

Anything with Sarah!


All of the scenes in Rainey’s house

And those in Mama Mitchell’s

Okay, I like the WHOLE STORY…and I can’t wait to see what you think too.

To celebrate her tour, Pepper is giving away a grand prize of a paper copy of A Twist of Faith, a mug from the Blue Ridge Parkway, one driftwood scented candle, one mango scented candle, and a Troublemaker snickers ? highly appropriate. Chocolate with a nutty personality :)!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

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This giveaway is hosted by Celebrate Lit, not RimSP.
Follow along with the tour for more chances to win!

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52 responses to “Book Review (and a Giveaway!): Charming the Troublemaker by Pepper Basham

  1. Kay Garrett

    Charming the Troublemaker sounds amazing but I’d expect nothing less from Pepper Basham.

    Thanks for the review.

  2. CARRIE!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this review
    And I’m so glad you loved CTTM as much as this!! I mean, seriously, it’s hard when JTWYA is in the back of the romcom readers’ minds, but I thought this story turned out soooooo well!! I’m really proud of it and SOOOOO glad you loved it.

    Yes, new words to love! #underoos #AdorkableAlex #herowannabe #achieved 🙂

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Andrea Stephens

    ❤ I have been waiting for your review Carrie! It was fabulous! I LOVE this book! Alex with Sarah melts my heart ?
    Alex and Rainey ? SO good! The suspense had me sitting on the edge of my seat. My goodness! I will read anything Pepper Basham writes from now on.

  4. Amy

    This book sounds like its right up my alley. I’ve only read one book by Pepper and it looks as though I need to remedy that ASAP!

  5. Perrianne Askew

    Although Pepper would be a new author for me, her books sound fabulous. Thank you for the giveaway opportunity.

  6. Deana Dick

    What a great review. I loved how you made the book sound so funny and inviting. Thanks for sharing your review with others,

  7. Pam K.

    A Twist of Faith is the first book I read by Pepper; I soon knew I had to read more. I’ve been looking forward to Charming the Troublemaker ever since I finished A Twist of Faith. I really like the Mitchell family. Thanks for the chance to win.

  8. Winnie Thomas

    I love Pepper’s books, and this one was so amazing! Thanks for the fun review, Carrie, and thanks for the fun book, Pepper! Two of my favorite people here in the same place! Hugs, sweet friends!

  9. MH

    Totally 100% agree with every single word of your review. What a great book! It’s the first of Pepper Basham’s I’ve read. Now I must go devour the other books.

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