Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Book review with a giveaway and a recipe: On a Summer Tide by Suzanne Woods Fisher

About the Book

Book: On a Summer Tide
Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher
Genre: Christian Fiction Romance
Release Date: April 30, 2019


Sometimes love hurts—and sometimes it can heal in the most unexpected way.

Camden Grayson loves her challenging career, but the rest of her life could use some improvement. “Moving on” is Cam’s mantra. But there’s a difference, her two sisters insist, between one who moves on . . . and one who keeps moving.

Cam’s full-throttle life skids to a stop when her father buys a remote island off the coast of Maine. Paul Grayson has a dream to breathe new life into the island—a dream that includes reuniting his estranged daughters. Certain Dad has lost his mind, the three sisters rush to the island. To Cam’s surprise, the slow pace of island life appeals to her, along with the locals—and one in particular. Seth Walker, the scruffy island schoolteacher harbors more than a few surprises.

With On a Summer Tide, bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher begins a brand-new contemporary romance series that is sure to delight her fans and draw new ones.

Click here to purchase your copy.

My Review

The daughters of the Grayson family were so disconnected from each other, and still hurting from their mother's death.  They each had strong personalities, and different gifts and abilities, so it was unlikely to see the family mesh together.  Love and concern for their father brought them together on the island he purchased,.  It was a beautiful thing to see each girl finally find herself and let her talents be used to make progress in fulfilling their parents' dream.

As well as loving the varied characters in this story, I also loved the descriptions of the island.  I could certainly imagine the smells and sounds, as well as the beauty of the island as if I were there.

The depths and differences in the characters and the themes of working together and transformation through faith made this a full-bodied story of hope.  As a fan of this author, I'm pleased with the debut of this new contemporary series, and I recommend it to fans of contemporary fiction, women's fiction, and inspirational romance.

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

About the Author

Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than thirty books, including Mending Fences, as well as the Nantucket Legacy, Amish Beginnings, The Bishop’s Family, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series, among other novels. She is also the author of several nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Facebook @SuzanneWoodsFisherAuthor and Twitter @suzannewfisher.


More from Suzanne

Oh-So-Maine Blueberry Buckle

Summer in Maine means plump, tart blueberries are everywhere. Here’s a family recipe that is nearly fool-proof….and so delicious! Especially with a scoop or two with vanilla ice cream.

Ever wonder how it got the name Blueberry Buckle?

While the batter rises as it bakes, but the blueberries and crumb topping weigh it down. This causes the surface of the cake to buckle…hence the name.


Batter:

¾ cup sugar
¼ cup soft butter
1 egg
½ cup milk
2 cups sifted flour
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups drained blueberries
Crumb Topping:

½ cup sugar
½ cup flour
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup softened butter
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix sugar and butter with egg. Stir in milk Sift together and stir in flour, baking powder and salt. Carefully blend in blueberries. Put on topping before baking. Pour in a greased and floured 9” square pan.

Bake 45-50 minutes.

Blog Stops

Just the Write Escape, May 23
The Avid Reader, May 23
The Power of Words, May 23
Blessed & Bookish, May 23
The Morning Chapter, May 24
Blogging With Carol, May 24
Carpe Diem, May 24
Cultivating Us, May 24
Godly Book Reviews, May 25
Stephanie’s Life of Determination, May 25
Mary Hake, May 25
For Him and my Family, May 25
C Jane Read, May 26
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 26
Blossoms and Blessings, May 26
Daysong Reflections, May 26
Lighthouse Academy, May 27
Reader’s Cozy Corner, May 27
Empower Moms, May 27
Remembrancy, May 27
She Lives to Read, June 4
Texas Book-aholic, June 4
janicesbookreviews, June 4
Jeanette’s Thoughts, June 4
Christian Chick’s Thoughts, June 5
Little Homeschool on the Prairie, June 5
Inklings and notions, June 5

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away a grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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/e540/on-a-summer-tide-celebration-tour-giveaway

Friday, May 24, 2019

Book review with a giveawy: Past Forward by Chautona Havig

About the Book

Book: Past Forward
Author: Chautona Havig
Genre: Christian Fiction, Romance, Suspense
Release Date: April 19, 2017


Alone without friends or family to comfort her after the death of her mother, Willow Finley’s idyllic life is over—and just beginning.

The Finley women’s lives, while rich and full, aren’t easy. rejecting electricity and many other modern conveniences, they live purposefully and intentionally–alone and isolated from the world around them.

When Willow Finley awakes on a hot summer morning, she is unprepared for the grief that awaits her. Jerked from a life of isolation with her mother, Willow learns what alone really means when she finds her mother dead.

From the moment Willow arrives in the police station with her startling announcement, Chad Tesdall fights the friendship he knows he can’t avoid.

The Past Forward series opens with Willow’s life-changing discovery and gently guides the reader through aspects of her life–the past weaving through the present and into the future. Experience her first morning in church, her first movie, and the culture shock of her first trips to the city. A birthday party and a street faire add welcome diversion from butchering, canning, and the beating of area rugs. Disaster strikes. Will she choose to continue her simple life, or will an offer in the city change it all? Find out in this first volume.

Click here to purchase your copy.

My Review

Originally published as a serial novel, this book is one that you will seriously be invested in.  It is long, covering several years, and it is detailed, describing life on Willow's farm and her many first experiences.  But it is worth it.  The premise of meeting new people and experiencing so many things for the first time after having lived her whole life in isolation from the world seems interesting enough.  ("What's Disney World?")  But Havig ramps up the story line with a beautiful romance, lots of laughter, and plenty of suspense.

Willow is such a doll, but she is very accomplished and intelligent, despite being naive to the world.  And Chad's reputation precedes him, as an upstanding law enforcement officer.  As well as experiencing everything for the first time with Willow, and getting into Chad's head, Havig has a full complement of lovable and believable supporting characters.

Another wonderful thing about reading this book is discovering all the connections (think Easter Eggs!) to other books I've read by this author.  It doesn't affect the story if one is not aware, but it's a nice bonus to reconnect with previous characters, places, and situations.

Fans of contemporary fiction and Christian fiction will enjoy this book.  I certainly did!

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

About the Author




Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her on the web and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.







More from Chautona

How Did My Weird High School Years Inspire This Book?

December 1985. The time had finally come. After two months of living in a run-down motel in Rosamond, California, we were finally moving to our own place. Seventeen miles away.

Just off Highway 58, outside Mojave, California (about the place that Alton Gansky’s, Distant Memory opens), a huge billboard loomed. For the curious, it’s still there today. Aqueduct City.

For the record, there was no city. There still isn’t. Just a dirt road or three. Oh, and the aqueduct. In fact, that’s eventually how we got our water—stole it from the California aqueduct.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

At the edge of all those parcels lay our new land. Twenty-two acres of desert sand, creosote, sage, and a tiny, baby Joshua tree at the end of our long, U-shaped dirt driveway.

I took out that sucker with my first attempt at backing down the drive. It looked like a snake had slithered back and forth across the sandy strip of cleared dirt, and somehow I managed to run over the foot-high tree. It wasn’t often I managed to shock my mother speechless. That was one time. I now have mad back-upping skills. Thought you oughtta know.

On that land, my parents put an 18’ travel trailer.

We hauled in water in 55-gallon drum barrels—first from a friend’s house and later from that aqueduct. It was several miles closer. One of those barrels ended up on top of the trailer for showers. The water pressure depended on how full that sucker was. Navy showers? Ever had one? It goes like so:

Turn on water.

Make one slow turn under the water to get all wet.

Turn it off.

Lather up.

Shampoo hair.

Turn on water.

Turn off.

Work conditioner into hair.

Turn on water.

Turn off.

Get out.

Try to stop your teeth from chattering.

For the record, that chattering is no joke. When it’s twenty degrees out there, water gets cold. And we had no way to heat it.

Our plumbing also included a shovel. For… um… other plumbing needs. Winter was the worst and the best time for the call of nature. Worst because, well, 40 mph winds and twenty-degree weather. Best, because no snakes.

We used Coleman propane lanterns, a propane refrigerator (that sat outside our door), and eventually, a gas-powered generator. Once a week, Dad would fire that thing up so I could iron my church clothes. #darkages

For the curious, summer was blistering hot.

No fans (except for stiff cardboard we used arm-power to operate). No air conditioner. Not even a swamp cooler. Mom and I would go into town and read at the library when we just couldn’t take another minute in 112-degree desert heat. She’d drive me to Lancaster so I could go sit in an air-conditioned movie theater and watch another movie. If it came out in 1986 or 1987 and wasn’t pure smut, I probably saw it. Out of self-preservation.

Before long, I’d been relegated to the “porch.” That consisted of a redwood lattice “patio” enclosure in front of the trailer door. (For those who haven’t figured it out yet, I was the dictionary definition of “trailer trash” in some people’s books.) That space was eight feet wide and sixteen feet long.

I had a twin bed out there. When winter came, dad made sleeping out there more bearable by heating huge rocks in one of those 55-gallon drum barrels and wrapping them in old quilts. That went at the foot of my bed to keep my feet warm.

If only the wind hadn’t blown sand into my hair every night…

What does all of this have to do with Past Forward?

Just this. People have often asked why Willow would choose to live without electricity. Some have said you couldn’t live only five miles outside of town and be so isolated and reclusive.

I disagree.

We did it. By choice. Because it’s who my father is. And of all of my characters, Kari Finley, Willow’s mother, is the most like my father. The way Kari taught Willow? That’s exactly how Dad used to teach me—by making it a natural part of life.

I didn’t know it when I wrote the series, but Past Forward really does show exactly what kind of life my father would have chosen to live if he’d ever really considered it. The self-sustaining work, the emphasis on beauty, the isolation—all of it shows the kind of man I call Dad.

If you’d asked me as a kid what I thought of living out there in Mojave, I would have said I hated it. Not only that, I would have believed myself. But if you’d talked to me for a while, you would have figured out that I said that because I was expected to. No one thinks you’ll like living with almost nothing, in the middle of nowhere, especially as a teenager.

Looking back, though, I actually I liked it. Dad. Mom. Me. And Boozer, our dog. I’d tell you about her, but that’s a story for another day. Yeah, I liked my life there “out on the property,” as we called it.

Except for the Mojave green rattlesnakes. Not a fan of those. Not then or today.

Just sayin’.

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, May 15
A Reader’s Brain, May 15
Godly Book Reviews, May 16
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 17
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 17
Blogging With Carol, May 18
Inklings and notions, May 18
Bigreadersite, May 19
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 19
All-Of-a-kind Mom, May 20
Texas Book-aholic, May 20
Aryn The Libraryan, May 21
Quiet Workings, May 22
Retrospective Spines, May 22
Inspired by Fiction, May 23
Carpe Diem, May 24
For Him and My Family, May 25
janicesbookreviews, May 25
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, May 26
Rebekah’s Quill, May 27
Inspiration Clothesline, May 28

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize that includes a complete paperback set of Past Forward & a custom Past Forward Lavender Lemonade candle!!

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/e319/past-forward-celebration-tour-giveaway

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Book review with a giveaway: The Printed Letter Bookshop by Katherine Reay

About the Book

Book: The Printed Letter Bookshop
Author: Katherine Reay
Genre: Women’s fiction, romance
Release Date: May 14, 2019

Amid literature and lattes, three women come together and find that sharing one’s journey with best friends makes life richer.


When attorney Madeline Cullen inherits her aunt’s bookstore in a small town north of Chicago, she plans to sell it and add the proceeds to her nonexistent “investment portfolio.” But plans change when Madeline discovers the store isn’t making money and she gets passed over for promotion at her firm. She quits in protest, takes the train north, and decides to work at the store to prep it for sale. Madeline soon finds herself at odds with employees Janet and Claire; when she also finds herself attracted to an affianced man, it only confuses the entire situation.

After blowing up her marriage two years earlier, Janet has found solace working at the bookstore and a kindred spirit within its owner, Maddie Cullen. But when Maddie dies and her niece, Madeline, barges in like a bulldozer, Janet pushes at the new owner in every way-until she trips over common ground. Soon the women are delving into online dating and fashion makeovers, and Janet feels the pull to rediscover her art, a love she thought long behind her.

After a night of bad decisions leaves the store in peril, Claire arrives and tries to save the day. While she, too, found sanctuary in the little bookstore, she knows it’s under-insured, in the red, and will never survive. When she discovers her teenage daughter has played a part in vandalizing the store, Claire taps into strength she didn’t know existed-or had long forgotten. The quietest of the three, she steps up and finds a way to save her family, the store, and the precious friendships that have grown within it.

The Printed Letter Bookshop is the story of friends who find each other-and themselves-in a place none of them ever expected.

Click here to purchase your copy.

My Review

This is a book lover's book!  Set in a bookstore, with book recommendations, references, and quotes throughout, it was wonderful!

The story shows the depth a person's influence on others can have, as evidenced by Maddie, the original owner of the bookshop.  Upon her death, those who were close to her must dig deep to discover or come back to the person each was meant to be.  I loved reading about the bookshop community, and I wish that the Printed Letter Bookshop was a place that I could visit!  The story moved forward by focusing on the three women who worked at the bookstore.  After the stage was set and we got to know each character. we begin learning the secrets of their pasts.  But as the story progressed, it was so beautiful to see Maddie's influence on their lives continue as they took steps to right the wrongs in their lives and move forward with grace.

I recommend this contemporary read to those who appreciate women's fiction, and books!

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

About the Author

Katherine Reay is the national bestselling and award-winning author of Dear Mr. Knightley, Lizzy and Jane, The Brontë Plot, A Portrait of Emily Price, The Austen Escape, and The Printed Letter Bookshop. All Katherine’s novels are contemporary stories with a bit of classical flair. Katherine holds a BA and MS from Northwestern University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa, and is a wife, mother, former marketer, and avid chocolate consumer. After living all across the country and a few stops in Europe, Katherine now happily resides outside Chicago, IL. You can meet her at www.katherinereay.com; Facebook: KatherineReayBooks; Twitter: @katherine_reay; or Instagram: @katherinereay.




More from Katherine

Don’t you love bookshops?

Every time I walk into a bookstore, it feels like a rainbow cracked open and rained a kaleidoscope of light, life and possibilities before me. I find worlds within the world and a call to adventure.

Each bookshop tells a different story. It tells of its loyal beloved customer base. It reflects the personality of its owner and staff. It carries the aura of the stories it offers to us.

And it was the perfect place to dig into lives, hearts and book loves of Janet, Claire and Madeline. These three women, at different stages in life, meet at the Printed Letter Bookshop, with all the romance and wonder it holds, and learn to work through their challenges together. They become the friends that each didn’t know she was missing.

There is also a fourth woman I loved spending time with in the Printed Letter Bookshop — its original owner, Maddie Carter. Maddie doesn’t step onto the stage even once, but her presence, her love and her guiding hand are apparent from page one as Janet, Claire, and Madeline grow in friendship and in faith.

The Printed Letter Bookshop is a love letter to books, a testament to the beauty of new beginnings and a sweet reminder of the power of friendship. I hope you savor your time with these three women — And, book lovers rejoice, there is a list of all the books they allude to in the back of the book!

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, May 14
Godly Book Reviews, May 14
The Power of Words, May 14
Reflections From My Bookshelves, May 15
Carla Loves To Read, May 15
Pause for Tales, May 15
Maureen’s Musings, May 16
Bigreadersite, May 16
By The Book, May 16
Inspirationally Ever After, May 17
Reading Themes, May 17
For The Love of Books, May 17
Lis Loves Reading, May 18
Emily Yager, May 18
Living Life Free in Christ, May 18
For HIm and My Family, May 19
Retrospective Spines, May 19
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, May 19
Girls Living For God’s Glory, May 20
As He Leads is Joy, May 20
To Everything A Season, May 20
All-Of-a-kind Mom, May 21
Through the Fire Blogs, May 21
Creating Romance, May 21
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 22
Christian Chick’s Thoughts, May 22
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 22
Reader’s Cozy Corner, May 23
Wishful Endings, May 23
Texas Book-aholic, May 23
Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 24
Just the Write Escape, May 24
The Christian Fiction Girl, May 25
Lighthouse Academy, May 25
janicesbookreviews, May 25
Inspired by Fiction, May 26
Simple Harvest Reads, May 26 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Inklings and notion, May 26
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 27
amandainpa, May 27
A Reader’s Brain, May 27

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Katherine is giving away a paperback copy of The Printed Letter Bookshop to one lucky winner!

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/e4f1/the-printed-letter-bookshop-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Book reviews with a giveaway: Isaac's Ice Cream Tree and When God Made Color

About the Books


WhiteSpark Publishing is thrilled to bring readers young and old two delightful stories all about color!

Isaac’s Ice Cream Tree

Isaac loves the sugar maple in his yard, and he can’t help but feel bad for it when its branches are winter-bare. He decides to give it a gift…and is surprised when the tree returns the favor in the new morning snow, presenting him with balls of…ice cream!

But how long can this magic last with spring on the horizon? A magical exploration through the colors of the rainbow, the days of the week, and some of our favorite fruits that is sure to delight.

When God Made Color


The wonders of creation spread out before us in all the glories of the rainbow…the deep purples and blues of night, the bright yellows of day, the pinks and oranges of flowers. And of course, the colors of all the creatures…including us! These sumptuous fine art illustrations will thrill parent and child alike!

Click here to purchase Isaac’s Ice Cream Tree.
Click here to purchase When God Made Color

My Reviews

Isaac's Ice Cream Tree was a delightful, magical book.  Who wouldn't want ready-to-eat ice cream to appear on their favorite tree?  The relationship between Isaac and the tree gave this picture book a special touch.  There was just enough repetition and just the right number of surprises to give this story appeal to its target audience.  I loved the whimsical choice of fonts and colors throughout the story.  

When God Made Colors told the creation account from a new perspective, which, along with the striking illustrations, made it very appealing to children and adults.

I received ARCs of these books from the publisher, WhiteSpark Publishing, through Celebrate Lit, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Authors

Angela Henderson resides in Dallas, Texas, where she teaches middle school English Language Arts & Reading and is a mother of three. Exploring children’s books for twelve years with her own children during numerous “story times” at the local library and reading hundreds of books to her children, her passion for quality children’s literature led her to write her own work. After creating her blog and Facebook page, Kidsbook Friends, and her Instagram, Instabooks, she’s been able to share her love of literature with over a thousand followers by featuring authors and books. She’s thrilled to introduce her own creative story where magical moments lead to positive perspectives.



Sheri Carmon seeks to incorporate the beauty of the Lord’s heart, His ways and His love in her writing for children. As an author, her goal is to shine His light through stories. In the past she has published poetry and inspirational compositions with both Blue Mountain Arts and The Group Publishing. Sheri has always cared for the individual needs of families and spent fifteen marvelous, fast-paced years in real estate, specializing in family friendly homes. She and her husband have helped facilitate whole church Bible-reading programs in Colorado, Nebraska and South Dakota. They make their home in Colorado, on the front range of the Rocky Mountains, where they’re surrounded by the beauty of God’s creation every day.

More from Angela

Why children’s books? After all, I teach young teens. Well, my reasons:

I love art, and reading children’s books is like looking at an artist’s showcase of creativity!
* Shout out to my amazing illustrator, Rachael Koppendrayer!

I love to dream up the impossible, and you can make anything happen in a children’s book!

I love togetherness and nothing brings a family together like a good book.

As I read picture books with my kiddos, the teacher in me wanted to instruct too. I created a blog (www.kidsbookfriends.com) so teachers, librarians and parents could have little lessons to help them “make friends” with the characters in the stories I featured. Surrounded by such inspiration from these books and my kiddos, I started writing my own manuscripts when my kids were all under age five, mainly sketches of thoughts until I had segments of time where I could construct stories.

After several years of attending SCBWI conferences; connecting with writers; creating manuscripts & editing and revising, editing and revising (you see a pattern?!); and submitting them to publishers, Isaac’s Ice Cream Tree was accepted for publication and was released January 15, 2019, by Whitefire Publishing! (It’s a process!!!)

The message embedded in this colorful, magical story expresses a very real part of my heart as it’s our family motto: “Always remember to look for the rainbow.” My kids and I both literally and figuratively practice this principle, rushing out after every rain to see if the sky is painted with a bow as well as trying to find the good that comes through the storms of life.

Through my journey, I’ve experienced much loss through moving many times, caring for my mother during her dying days, and losing my husband through divorce. Yet in it all, God redeems and uses each pain and joy like brush strokes on a canvass, reminding us of His unfailing promises while creating a masterpiece.

Creativity, imagination, inspiration . . . make magical moments.

Gather together. Dream the impossible. Embrace the colors. . . as I introduce you to a new friend, Isaac! Excited to share this story with you. . . and my next one . . . and the one after that. . . until we have many new kindred spirits . . .together.

Click here for a free printable coloring page.

Click here to learn the story behind the story.

More from Sheri

A child asks, “Who am I?”

Creation Vs. Evolution – The big battle. Many public schools are presenting Evolution as fact and not theory. They leave no room for the concept of Creation. Our little ones are not creatures descended from animals, they are Children of God, created in His image. This is our identity and our children’s Identity and it makes all the difference in how we see ourselves, how we see others and how we engage in the world. Our identity is made clear in Genesis, the first book of the Bible. Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground. So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them, male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:26-27 NIV. As Christian parents and grandparents, we are charged with teaching, encouraging and bringing forth our family line for the LORD. The new picture book When God Made Color, with its awe inspiring illustrations, is about our true identity and about the joyful, loving God who created us and the whole universe – a universe that is still expanding – Isn’t He just amazing?

Click here to view a special video.

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, May 2
By The Book, May 2
Among the Reads, May 3
cultivating us, May 3
Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, May 4
Reflections From My Bookshelves, May 4
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 5
Mary Hake, May 5
For Him and My Family, May 6
Stephanie’s Life of Determination, May 6
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, May 7
Blogging With Carol, May 7
Lighthouse Academy, May 8
God’s Peculiar Treasure Rae, May 8
Pause for Tales, May 9
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, May 9
Inspiration Clothesline, May 10
Reading Themes, May 10
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 11
Texas Book-aholic, May 11
Have A Wonderful Day, May 12
janicesbookreviews, May 12
A Reader’s Brain, May 13
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 13
Older & Smarter?, May 14
Creating Romance, May 14
Inklings and notions, May 14
Aryn, the Libraryan, May 15
Little Homeschool on the Prairie, May 15
The Becca Files, May 15

Giveaway


To celebrate their tour, Angela and Sheri are giving away a grand prize of The Great Color Giveaway Package that includes a $25 gift card from Amazon, Rainbow ice-cream cups with colored spoons, a paperback copy of Issacs’s Ice Cream Tree, a $25 gift card from Barnes and Noble,

Crayola Washable Kids’ Paint – 12 count original and glitter paint (see attached image), and a paperback copy of When God Made Color!!

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/e2a9/the-great-color-celebration-tour-giveaway

Friday, May 3, 2019

Book review with a giveaway: The Memory House by Rachel Hauck


About the Book

Book: The Memory House
Author: Rachel Hauck
Genre: Christian Romance
Release Date: April 2, 2019


Embracing the future means remembering the past . . .

When Beck Holiday lost her father in the North Tower on 9/11, she also lost her memories of him. Eighteen years later, she’s a tough New York City cop burdened with a damaging secret, suspended for misconduct, and struggling to get her life in order. Meanwhile a mysterious letter arrives informing her she’s inherited a house along Florida’s northern coast, and what she discovers there will change her life forever. Matters of the heart only become more complicated when she runs into handsome Bruno Endicott, a driven sports agent who fondly recalls the connection they shared as teenagers. But Beck doesn’t remember that, either. Decades earlier, widow Everleigh Applegate lives a steady, uneventful life with her widowed mother after a tornado ripped through Waco, Texas, and destroyed her new, young married life. When she runs into old high school friend Don Callahan, she begins to yearn for change. Yet no matter how much she longs to love again, she is hindered by a secret she can never share. Fifty years separate the women but through the power of love and miracle of faith, they each find healing in a beautiful Victorian known affectionately as The Memory House.

Click here to purchase your copy.

My Review

Picking up a new book by Rachel Hauck, I knew I would love it.  But the more I got into it, the more I panicked, because I knew it would have to end.  And after a very satisfying read, there were tears of joy.  I  highly recommend this book!

This dual time period story was beautiful, yet quite realistic.  The characters suffered through tragedy, and it was amazing to witness their healing and transformation.  Readers who enjoy historical or contemporary romance will be drawn into this memorable story.

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher, Thomas Nelson, through Celebrate Lit.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Rachel Hauck is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA TODAY bestselling author of The Wedding Dress, which was also named Inspirational Novel of the Year by Romantic Times and was a RITA finalist. Rachel lives in central Florida with her husband and pet and writes from her ivory tower. Visit her online at RachelHauck.com; Facebook: RachelHauck; Twitter: @RachelHauck; Instagram: @rachelhauc








Excerpt from The Memory House

When Mama Applegate spoke as if Everleigh were a guest rather than a family member, she embraced it with grace. Because at the end of the day, she was Rhett’s wife. She alone shared his dreams, his heart, his life.

And at night, when she couldn’t sleep, his soft breathing was her lullaby.

“Listen, mister, I have to get back to work or I won’t make it home in time for our dinner.” She tugged at his shirt collar. “So are you going to tell me why you’re here?”

“I was going to wait until tonight, but I got so excited . . .” Rhett stepped over to the desk in front of Everleigh’s and retrieved a long white canister. “Here. Open it. I feel like a kid at Christmas.”

“Rhett, what have you done?” She pried away the cap and slipped out a set of drawings.

“Here, let me.” Rhett unrolled a rendering of a cozy house with a wraparound porch nestled between two cottonwoods. “Our house, Ev. I took those sketches you made after we were married and gave
them to the architect. What do you think?”

“Th-this is our house?” She wrapped her arms around his waist, leaning against his thick arm as she studied the drawing.
“It’s our house, darling.”

Everleigh studied the drawing. It was just like she imagined. “Are you sure?” She gazed up at her husband. “I didn’t think we’d saved enough money.”

“We’ve saved every penny of your salary, and I finally sold the stud bull to Jacob Marshall. He’s been after me for a year . . .” Rhett held her with one hand while flipping through the drawing with the other. “I bought the ten acres by the stream. You know, the one with the trees we loved. Dad wanted to give it to us, but I said no strings.

I wanted to buy it so he can’t hold it over me. Not that he would, but family business can get tricky.” Everleigh leaned to see the name of the road. Memory Lane.

“Darling, the section right off Memory Lane? The spot I wanted?”

Rhett’s grandmother had named the dirt road years ago, when she imagined a large family with lots of grandkids running around.

She envisioned an Applegate community.

But her sons, Melvin and Earl, went to war. Only Earl—nicknamed Spike—returned home the fall of 1918. He inherited the ranch, married Mama Applegate, and fathered Rhett, an only child. Grandma’s two daughters married and moved away.

“Your granny would be proud, darling,” Everleigh said. “We’re beginning her dream.”

“Sh-she would.” Rhett cleared his throat, pressing his fist over his cough. “So, w-what do you think?”


Tell him! The timing could not have been more perfect.

“Rhett, sweetheart—”

He jerked his wrist up, checking his watch. “Oh, Ev, sorry, darling, but I promised Dad I’d pick him up from the hardware store thirty minutes ago.” He gave her a quick, passing kiss. “I’d planned to show you these tonight, but I just couldn’t wait.” He rolled up the drawings and tucked them into the canister. “What is it you wanted to say?” On reflex, he checked his watch again.

“Nothing,” she said, smiling. “I’ll see you later. We can talk then. I have work to do anyway.”

“You sure?”

Everleigh fell into him and pressed her cheek against his chest.

“You make my dreams come true, Rhett Applegate.”

He kissed her one more time, then held her at arm’s length.

“Distraction, girl, you are one beautiful distraction.”

Blog Stops

Back Porch Reads , April 22
The Avid Reader, April 22
Wishful Endings, April 22
All-of-a-kind Mom, April 23
The Power of Words, April 23
Andrea Christenson, April 23
Worthy2Read, April 23
Carla Loves to Read, April 24
Blogging With Carol, April 24
Spoken from the Heart, April 24
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, April 24
C Jane Read, April 25
Reader’s Cozy Corner, April 25
Lis Loves Reading, April 25
For Him and My Family, April 25
CAFFEINATED CHRISTIAN RAVES-N-REVIEWS, April 26
Literary Reflections Book Blog, April 26
Jeanette’s thoughts, April 26
Carpe Diem, April 26
Mary Hake, April 27
EmpowerMoms, April 27
My Devotional Thoughts, April 27
Stephanie’s Life of Determination, April 27
Bigreadersite, April 28
Inklings and notions, April 28
Pause for Tales, April 28
Christian Chick’s Thoughts, April 28
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, April 29
Rachel’s Back Talk, April 29
For The Love of Books, April 29
Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, April 30
Quiet Quilter, April 30
Just the Write Escape, April 30
Reflections From My Bookshelves, May 1
Godly Book Reviews, May 1
Lights in a Dark World, May 1
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 1
Stories By Gina, May 2
Texas Book-aholic, May 2
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 2
Older & Smarter?, May 3
janicesbookreviews, May 3
Living Life Free in christ, May 3
The Becca Files, May 4
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, May 4
A Reader’s Brain, May 4
Inspired by fiction, May 5
Moments, May 5
To Everything A Season, May 5
Simple Harvest Reads, May 5 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away a grand prize of a copy of The Memory House!!

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/e2aa/the-memory-house-celebration-tour-giveaway