Monday, January 21, 2019

Book review with a giveaway: Flights of Fancy by Jen Turano


About the Book

Title: Flights of Fancy
Author: Jen Turano
Genre: Christian Historical Romance, Gilded Age
Release date: January 1, 2019
Publisher: Bethany House


Miss Isadora Delafield may be an heiress, but her life is far from carefree. When her mother begins pressuring her to marry an elderly and uncouth duke, she escapes from the high society world she’s always known and finds herself to be an unlikely candidate for a housekeeper position in rural Pennsylvania.

Mr. Ian MacKenzie is known for his savvy business sense and has built his reputation and fortune completely on his own merits. But when his adopted parents are in need of a new housekeeper and Isadora is thrown into his path, he’s unexpectedly charmed by her unconventional manner.

Neither Isadora nor Ian expected to find the other so intriguing, but when mysterious incidents on the farm and the truth of Isadora’s secret threaten those they love, they’ll have to set aside everything they thought they wanted for a chance at happy-ever-after.

Click here to order your copy!

My Review

You'd run, too!

Isadora Delafield had no choice but to flee her high-society, privileged, New York City life to escape a bleak future.  In doing so, she finds purpose and love among her new small-town neighbors.

Ian MacKenzie was fast-tracking to the height of Pittsburgh high society, his aim to find a wife that would upwardly propel him in that goal.  Through Isadora and his family, he realizes that living and working as an honorable man is much more important.

Jen Turano begins a new book series, American Heiresses, with Flights of Fancy.  With the same setting and style as her previous book series, the reader will also find this new book filled with witty dialog and laugh-out-loud situations.  Some mystery and suspense will also keep readers turning the pages of this fine book.

If you're a Jen Turano fan, you won't be disappointed with this new book.  Historical romance readers will enjoy it also.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Bethany House, through Celebrate Lit, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

One of the Funniest Voices in Inspirational Romance by Booklist, Jen Turano is a USA Today Best-Selling Author, known for penning quirky historical romances set in the Gilded Age. Her books have earned Publisher Weekly and Booklist starred reviews, top picks from Romantic Times, and praise from Library Journal. She’s been a finalist twice for the RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards and had two of her books listed in the top 100 romances of the past decade from Booklist. When she’s not writing, she spends her time outside of Denver, CO.







Guest post from Jen

Q & A With Jen Turano

“Flights of Fancy” is the first book in the American Heiress Series. What inspired you to write this series?

The inspiration for this entire series started off with a What If? All of my proposals for new series start off that way, and this time it was – What if Consuelo Vanderbilt had balked when her mother insisted she marry the Duke of Marlborough – and then that led to – What if she’d run away until her mother came to her senses? Just like that, an entire series was born – a bit of a different take on American heiresses because in all three books, my heiresses might decide to go a tad…rogue. We start off with Miss Isadora Delafield – who does run off to avoid marriage to a duke, then we get to meet Miss Poppy Garrison, who is an unexpected heiress but who can’t quite seem to get a handle on the expected social decorum of the day, and then the final book revolves around Miss Beatrix Waterbury – who gets banished to Chicago after she annoys her mother one too many times, and once there, well, gets up to a bit of mischief.

How do you come up with the names of your characters?

I find most of my names as I research the New York Four-Hundred, although I normally take a first name here, a last name there so I’m not stepping on any toes by writing about an actual historical figure – except for some of the main figures in New York society back then, such as Mr. Ward McAllister – who was the social arbiter of the day, or Mrs. William Astor, who was the queen of that society. What I don’t do is simply make up names, no matter how outrageous they may appear. And, no matter how I may love a certain name, if the character decides it doesn’t suit them, that’s it, it’s out and I’m back to the drawing board.

How do you picture your character? Do you use Pinterest, magazines, movies?

Odd as this may seem, I don’t use pictures for my characters. They start off in my mind as a blurry figure, and then, they develop from there – I like to keep my descriptions of them somewhat vague on the pages so that the reader can imagine them exactly the way they’d like them to be.

What are some of your favorite resources for historical research?


I’ve been building up a research library over the past few years and now have over 200 books dedicated to the Gilded Age. My favorites are – “A Season of Splendor” by Greg King, “Society as I Have Found It” by Ward McAllister, “The Gilded Age in New York – 1870-1910” by Esther Crain, and “ ‘King Lehr’ and the Gilded Age” by Elizabeth Drexel Lehr.

The setting for “Flights of Fancy” is a bit of a departure for you since it’s set in and outside of Pittsburgh. Any reason for that?


My mom was born in Pittsburgh, and unfortunately, her father, a prominent attorney back in the day, died when she was only four. I thought it would be cool to set a story in Pittsburgh, which would then allow me to really dive into some research. And get this – while I was doing that research, I found this obscure journal called “Memoirs of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. In that journal was a bit about my great-grandfather, Fred, his wife, Susie, my grandfather, and his brother and sister, but I’d never heard about this brother, who apparently died quite young. One of the most fabulous research tidbits I’ve uncovered to date.

What are you working on now?

I’ve just recently turned in the content edits for the second book in this series, “Diamond in the Rough,” and I’ve also turned in a novella about the Harvey Girls that will be coming out in a novella collection in Fall, 2019. With those out of the way, I’m now starting the third and final book in the American Heiress series, Miss Beatrix Waterbury’s story, but I’m having a bit of a struggle with the hero at the moment – he was supposed to be Edward, but he doesn’t want to be an Edward – I think he wants to be Norman – but, time will tell on that one – don’t hold me to the name – it’ll depend on if he changes his mind or not – pesky characters.

You seem to enjoy adding animals in many of your stories. Will we find any animals in “Flights of Fancy?”

Since Miss Isadora Delafield ends up on a farm, I do believe you will find a few animals, such as an adorable cow by the name of Buttercup, a few goats that seem to have a great liking for laundry, and…there might be some chickens.

Thanks for stopping by today, everyone! Always enjoy visiting with all of you – in fact, that’s the best part of my job!

All the best,

~ Jen ~

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, January 10
Among the Reads, January 10
Through the Fire, January 10
To Everything A Season, January 10
Reflections From My Bookshelves, January 11
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, January 11
Blogging With Carol, January 11
Southern Gal loves to Read, January 11
Back Porch Reads, January 12
KarenSueHadley, January 12
Godly Book Reviews, January 12
Daysong Refections, January 12
Livin Lit, January 13
The Christian Fiction Girl, January 13
The Becca Files, January 13
Texas Book-aholic, January 13
Rebekah’s Quill, January 14
Blossoms and Blessings, January 14
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, January 14
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 14
All-of-a-kind Mom, January 15
Just the Write Escape, January 15
Stories By Gina, January 15
God’s Little Bookworm, January 16
The Meanderings of a Bookworm, January 16
Splashes of Joy, January 16
Janices book reviews, January 16
Happily Managing A Household of Boys, January 17
Mary Hake, January 17
Maureen’s Musings, January 17
Bibliophile Reviews, January 17
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 18
Baker Kella, January 18
Simple Harvest Reads, January 18 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 19
Captive Dreams Window, January 19
Robin is Bookish, January 19
Carpe Diem, January 19
Have A Wonderful Day, January 20
Life with the Tribe, January 20
Inklings and Notions, January 20
Rachel’s Back Talk, January 21
Inspiration Clothesline, January 21
amandainpa, January 21
A Baker’s Perspective, January 21
Locks, Hooks and Books, January 22
Pause for Tales, January 22
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, January 22
Raining Butterfly Kisses, January 23
Live Love Read, January 23
A Rup Life, January 23
Bigreadersite, January 23

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Jen is giving away a grand prize of a trunk filled with all of Jen’s full-length novels released to date!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d8d1/flights-of-fancy-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, January 14, 2019

Book review: Mind Games by Nancy Mehl

About the Book:

Kaely Quinn's talents as an FBI behavior analyst are impossible to ignore, no matter how unorthodox her methods. But when a reporter outs her as the daughter of an infamous serial killer, she's demoted to field agent and transferred to St. Louis.

When the same reporter who ruined her career claims to have received an anonymous poem predicting a string of murders, ending with Kaely's, the reporter's ulterior motives bring his claim into question. But when a body is found that fits the poem's predictions, the threat is undeniable, and the FBI sends Special Agent Noah Hunter to St. Louis.

Initially resentful of the assignment, Noah is surprised at how quickly his respect for Kaely grows, despite her oddities. But with a brazen serial killer who breaks all the normal patterns on the loose, Noah and Kaely are tested to their limits to catch the murderer before anyone else--including Kaely herself--is killed.

My Review:

Wow!  What a book!  To begin with, I was creeped out in the prologue, but it never ended.  This was such a good book because as I read, I was getting to know Kaely Quinn, or I was trying to figure out the mystery, or I was just blown away by all the details that went into this amazing book!

Another thing that was important to me was that even though it involved crime scenes, murder, and sleuthing, the author kept the book clean and classy- no foul language or overly descriptive scenes offended my sensibilities.

Men and women who are fans of suspense and police drama will definitely want to read this book.  This one gets five stars from me!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Bethany House, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author:

Nancy Mehl lives in Missouri, with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She's authored thirty books and is currently at work on a new FBI suspense series for Bethany House Publishing.

All of Nancy's novels have an added touch - something for your spirit as well as your soul. "I welcome the opportunity to share my faith through my writing," Nancy says. "It's a part of me and of everything I think or do. God is number one in my life. I wouldn't be writing at all if I didn't believe that this is what He's called me to do. I hope everyone who reads my books will walk away with the most important message I can give them: God is good, and He loves you more than you can imagine. He has a good plan especially for your life, and there is nothing you can't overcome with His help."

You can find out more about Nancy by visiting her Web site at: www.nancymehl.com. She also is active on the Suspense Sisters: www.suspensesisters.blogspot.com and on FaceBook!

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Book Review: Gone Too Soon by Melody Carlson

About the Book:

An icy road. A car crash.
A family changed forever.


Hannah Josephson had always been the “perfect” daughter. Kiera couldn’t live up to her before, and she certainly can’t now that her older sister has died in a car accident. But the image she carried resentfully of Hannah is challenged when she finds her dead sister’s diary and begins to read. Apparently Hannah’s final year wasn’t as perfect as everyone thought.

Caught in a pattern of blaming each other, the Josephson family is falling apart. Their father has left, their mother is mixing opiates and alcohol, little sister Maddie has been shipped off to spend the whole summer with their grandmother, and Kiera feels utterly alone with her grief and anger. A summer job helping at a park in a poor section of town provides a friend and a purpose.

But it’s Hannah’s diary that fills her thoughts. For the first time in years, she feels close to the sister she’s lost. But can the knowledge she gleans about her possibly help her patch back together the family that seems determined to implode?

You can purchase your copy here.

My Review:

I never know what to expect when I pick up a Young Adult novel, but this one hooked me right away.  Much of the novel was first person, in Kiera's voice, which was a good technique.  In real life, I don't think I would have liked Kiera, but being inside her head gave me compassion for her.  I grew to appreciate her gutsiness, and applauded the steps she took to grow up.

For being a YA novel, it was not too angsty, which I appreciate.  It deals with many difficult topics in a way that is real, yet appropriate for teen readers.  As I was reading, my thoughts were that I really wanted to share this book.  Because of a varied cast of characters, there is someone for everyone to relate to, so teens and their parents can enjoy this book.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher, WhiteSpark, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author:

Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women and children. That's a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a "storyteller." Her novels range from serious issues like schizophrenia (Finding Alice) to lighter topics like house-flipping (A Mile in My Flip-Flops) but most of the inspiration behind her fiction comes right out of real life. Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, Truecolors, etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She's won a number of awards (including Romantic Time's Career Achievement Award, the Rita and the Gold Medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog. To find out more about Melody Carlson, visit her website at http://www.melodycarlson.com/

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Book Review with a giveaway: Catching Christmas by Terri Blackstock

About the Book

Book: Catching Christmas
Author: Terri Blackstock
Genre: Christian Fiction, Romance, Christmas
Release Date: October 9, 2018


This Year, Christmas Comes Just in Time.


As a first-year law associate, Sydney Batson knows she will be updating her resume by New Year’s if she loses her current court case. So when her grandmother gets inexplicably ill while she’s in court, Sydney arranges for a cab to get her to the clinic.

The last thing cab driver Finn Parrish wants is to be saddled with a wheelchair-bound old lady with dementia. But because Miss Callie reminds him of his own mother, whom he failed miserably in her last days, he can’t say no when she keeps calling him for rides. Once a successful gourmet chef, Finn’s biggest concern now is making his rent, but half the time Callie doesn’t remember to pay him. And as she starts to feel better, she leads him on wild goose chases to find a Christmas date for her granddaughter.

When Finn meets Sydney, he’s quite sure that she’s never needed help finding a date. Does Miss Callie have an ulterior motive, or is this just a mission driven by delusions? He’s willing to do whatever he can to help fulfill Callie’s Christmas wish. He just never expected to be a vital part of it.

Click here to purchase your copy.

My Review

Finn was just trying to make a buck to pay his rent.  Sydney was doing the best she could on her own.  Callie needed to make her doctor's appointment.  Callie brought Finn and Syndey together in ways they would never have expected.  Callie was a force to be reckoned with, when she wasn't sleeping in the back of Finn's cab.  This was a fun book to read, as the characters were very real, and the perspective went back and forth between Finn and Sydney.   

It's a lighthearted, yet very touching contemporary read that I really enjoyed and highly recommend.

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher, Thomas Nelson, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Terri Blackstock has sold over seven million books worldwide and is a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author. She is the award-winning author of Intervention, Vicious Cycle, and Downfall, as well as such series as Cape Refuge, Newpointe 911, the SunCoast Chronicles, and the Restoration Series. Catching Christmas is her first Christmas romance. Visit her website at www.terriblackstock.com Facebook: tblackstock Twitter: @terriblackstock








From Terri Blackstock

Enjoy this premium excerpt from Catching Christmas.


https://aerbook.com/books/-128993.html?utm_source=pubpage


To get you in the Christmas mood, here’s an early holiday playlist:


“White Christmas” sung by Bing Crosby

“I Heard the Bells” sung by MercyMe

“Light of the World” sung by Lauren Daigle

“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” sung by Amy Grant

“Don’t Save it All for Christmas Day” sung by Avalon

“Till the Season Comes ‘Round Again” sung by the Katinas


Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, December 15
Daysong Reflections, December 15
Genesis 5020, December 15
Back Porch Reads, December 15
The Power of Words, December 16
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, December 16
Quiet Quilter, December 16
Among the Reads, December 17
Kathleen Denly, December 17
By The Book, December 17
Lighthouse Academy, December 17
Cultivating Us, December 18
Simple Harvest Reads, December 18 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
Remembrancy, December 18
Caffeinated Christian Raves – N – Reviews, December 19
Jennifer Sienes: Where Crisis and Christ Collide, December 19
Christian Author, J.E. Grace, December 19
All-of-a-kind Mom, December 20
amandainpa, December 20
Christian Chick’s Thoughts, December 20
Multifarious, December 21
Cathe Swanson, December 21
Stories By Gina, December 21
Connect in Fiction, December 22
Have A Wonderful Day, December 22
Splashes of Joy, December 22
Bibliophile Reviews, December 22
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 23
Lis Loves Reading, December 23
Mary Hake, December 23
Bigreadersite, December 23
Book by Book, December 24
Pause for Tales, December 24
To Everything A Season, December 24
Southern Gal Loves to Read, December 25
A Good Book and Cup of Tea, December 25
Vicky Sluiter, December 25
Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 26
Inklings and notions, December 26
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, December 26
Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, December 27
Captive Dreams Window, December 27
Texas Book-aholic, December 27
A Baker’s Perspective, December 27
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 28
Older & Smarter?, December 28
Janices book reviews, December 28
Carpe Diem, December 28

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Terri is giving away a grand prize of a finished copy of Catching Christmas and a Christmas Tree Ornament!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d776/catching-christmas-celebration-tour-giveaway

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Book Review: Searching For You by Jody Hedlund

About the Book

Despite years on the run, Sophie Neumann is determined to care for two young children. She won't abandon them the way she thinks her older sisters abandoned her. But times are growing desperate, and when she falls in with the wrong crowd and witnesses a crime, she realizes fleeing 1850s New York is her only option.

Disappearing with her two young charges into a group of orphans heading west by train, Sophie hopes to find safety and a happy life. When the train stops in Illinois for the first placement of orphans, Sophie faces the most difficult choice of her life.

Reinhold Weiss has finally purchased his own small farm. With mounting debts, a harvest to bring in, and past scars that haunt him, he's in no position to give his heart away . . . but can he say no when his long-lost friend shows up on a nearby train pleading for his help?

My Review

She is amazing.  In this beautiful conclusion to the Orphan Train series, author Jody Hedlund uses her pen to create a story that brings out amazing depth of feeling.  I felt all of the uncertainty, the desperation, and the despair, love, joy and passion that Sophie Neumann felt throughout the book.  And the passion!!  Hedlund describes the physical desire between Sophie and Reinhold in a very believable way, but always keeps it clean.

This book can be read as a stand-alone, but it was especially wonderful to have read it as a part of the series.  I recommend it for fans of historical romance, and for those who have an interest in the orphan trains that began in the 1850s.

I received a copy from the publisher, Bethany House, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Jody Hedlund is the author of over twenty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award.

Jody lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy children, and five spoiled cats. Although Jody prefers to experience daring and dangerous adventures through her characters rather than in real life, she’s learned that a calm existence is simply not meant to be (at least in this phase of her life!).

When she’s not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate.

Book Review: Shelter of the Most High by Connilyn Cossette

About the Book

The daughter of a pagan high priest, Sofea finds solace from her troubles in the freedom of the ocean. But when marauders attack her village on the island of Sicily, she and her cousin are taken across the sea to the shores of Canaan.

Eitan has lived in Kedesh, a City of Refuge, for the last eleven years, haunted by a tragedy in his childhood and chafing at the boundaries placed on him. He is immediately captivated by Sofea, but revealing his most guarded secret could mean drawing her into the danger of his past.

As threats from outside the walls loom and traitors are uncovered within, Sofea and Eitan are plunged into the midst of a murder plot. Will they break free from the shackles of the past in time to uncover the betrayal and save their lives and the lives of those they love?

My Review

Having read all of Cossette's previous novels, I was intrigued at the introduction to Sofea and Prezi in their native homeland.  What a heart wrenching, yet exciting beginning to this book!  Then this book continued to take me from the depths of despair to the heights of elation.

It was wonderful to join Moriyah's family eleven years later.  Her dreams had come true, and this book chronicles the emotional and spiritual journey of her adopted son, Eitan.

I really appreciated knowing the background of all the characters, but the book does stand alone.  I highly recommend it to those who enjoy Biblical fiction.

I received a copy from the publisher, Bethany House, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Connilyn Cossette is the Christy Award Nominated and CBA-Bestselling author of the Out from Egypt Series from Bethany House Publishers. There's not much she enjoys more than digging into the rich, ancient world of the Bible, discovering new gems of grace that point to Jesus, and weaving them into an immersive fiction experience. Connect with her at www.ConnilynCossette.com

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Book Review with a Giveaway: The Three Faces of Nellie by Robynne Elizabeth Miller


About the Book

Book: The Three Faces of Nellie
Author: Robynne Elizabeth Miller
Genre: Non-fiction, Historical
Release Date: November, 2016
Publisher: Practical Pioneer Press


Whether you love her, hate her, or love to hate her, Nellie Oleson is one of the most recognizable literary figures of the 20th century. But Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of the Little House on the Prairie series in which Nellie appears, had a secret. . .Nellie wasn’t a real person! Instead, she was a composite character created from three girls Laura knew in childhood: Nellie Owens, Genevieve Masters, and Estella Gilbert.

The Little House character of Nellie Oleson is one-dimensional: snobbish, selfish, and thoroughly unpleasant. But what about the real women behind Laura’s creation? They were an intriguing mix of the not-so-nice and the unexpectedly redeemable. In short, they were human.

Discovering the true stories behind Nellie, Genevieve, and Estella has been a fascinating journey. All three ended up on the West Coast at one point. . .true westward movement! One was widowed twice, one ended up divorced, and one died way too young. Two only had one child, and one had three, though she outlived her youngest by a very long time. There’s even some “Nellie-like” drama in there: Embezzlement. Lying on censuses. Shady land deals.

But there are some beautiful things, too. . .like the enduring love of a husband after his young wife died. Or the rare closeness of a mother and daughter who shared their lives as adults. Or the strength of a young widowed mother who not only cared for her son, but headed out west, in true pioneer fashion, while she did so.

Laura Ingalls Wilder did a masterful job of creating the character of Nellie Oleson. But the three real-life women behind that iconic character are, in my opinion, infinitely more intriguing.

Click here to purchase your copy!

My Review

Who knew?!  I consider my self a huge Little House fan, but obviously I'm not as huge a fan as those who already knew this little tidbit:  Apparently, Nellie Oleson of Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House books was a character created by Laura, but was based on three different girls in her childhood.  This book details those three girls' lives, such as when they traveled west, when they lived, when they knew Laura, and what they did in their adult lives.  The author presented substantiated research, and acknowledged when there may have been gaps in the knowledge.

I was very impressed with the amount of research that went into this book.  It was a fairly quick read, and sometimes was a little dry (think of the biblical begats), but yet fascinating to learn more of these girls who comprised the Nellie Oleson character.

It is worth the read for Little House fans, or others that appreciate genealogical research.

I received an ARC of this book from the author, through Celebrate Lit, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Robynne Elizabeth Miller is a speaker, writing coach, and author of multiple books, articles, and essays. Her larger projects include From the Mouth of Ma, Pioneer Mixology, The Three Faces of Nellie, and Nonfiction, Memoir, or Fiction? Dissecting the Works of Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Robynne speaks nationally at writing and historical venues and teaches at writer’s workshops and conferences. She also serves as the Board President of Inspire Christian Writers, as well as their Director of Leadership, and leads two Northern California critique groups.

She holds an undergraduate degree in English Literature from Westmont College and a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction and Fiction from Ashland University.

She lives with her wonderful British husband and the youngest of their four cheeky children in the snowy woods of the Sierra Nevada mountains. When not writing, Robynne loves singing, felling trees, and making bacon from scratch.

Guest Post from Robynne

Nasty Nellie Oleson. One of the most iconic literary characters in literature. Whether you loved her … or hated her … or loved to hate her, she probably left a lasting impression on you. At least if you were a fan of the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder like I was growing up!

As a young girl, I loved Wilder’s tales of wagons, prairies, and grand westward adventures. Strangely, growing up didn’t change my love for all things Little House one tiny bit. But I did become deeply curious about the real life people behind some of the more fascinating Little House characters.

Namely, Nellie Oleson.

As I began to research Nellie, I learned a ton of interesting things. She wasn’t one person, for example. Laura Ingalls Wilder wove three girls she knew in childhood into one composite character for her books. One of the first “Nellie’s,” Nellie Owens, did have a brother named Willy, but did you know that he went blind from two separate incidents, one in childhood and one in adulthood? And did you know that all three of the “Nellies” ended up on the west coast at one point? Talk about true westward movement! One married a man who eventually went to prison for embezzlement, one did some shady land deals, and one shouldn’t have been a “Nellie” at all.

I suppose I was hoping for a good, old-fashioned redemption story. Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if the mean girl in Wilder’s stories grew up to work with orphans or rescue unwanted animals? Alas, that’s not exactly what happened. But the stories of these three women were fascinating all the same.

I hope you have as much fun discovering the real stories behind the famous Nellie Oleson as I did!

Blog Stops

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 6
Blogging With Carol, December 6
multifarious, December 7
Carpe Diem, December 7
Bibliophile Reviews, December 8
The Morning Chapter, December 8
Just the Write Escape, December 9
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 9
A Reader’s Brain, December 10
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 10
Maureen’s Musings, December 11
A Baker’s Perspective, December 11
Girls in White Dresses, December 12
Artistic Nobody, December 13
Connie;s HIstory Classroom, December 14
Jeanette’s Thoughts, December 14
Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 15
Pause for Tales, December 15
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, December 16
Texas Book-aholic, December 16
Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, December 17
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 17
Janices book reviews, December 18
margaret kazmierczak, December 18
Lots of Helpers, December 19
Bigreadersite, December 19

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Robynne is giving away a grand prize of a Little House Treasures basket that includes an authenticated piece of the original Loftus Store is De Smet, authenticated sand from Laura’s Plum Creek in Walnut Grove, a Loftus Store slate and slate pencil, chokecherry preserves from De Smet, a Christmas Tree ornament from De Smet, a corn-cob doll kit, a tin cup, maple syrup, a set of pioneer recipe books, Laura Ingalls Wilder’s actual gingerbread recipes, and other treasures from various Little House sites!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries in to the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d774/the-three-faces-of-nellie-olson-celebration-tour-giveaway