Monday, August 10, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: Love's Mountain Quest by Misty M. Beller



About the Book

Book: Love’s Mountain Quest
Author: Misty M Beller
Genre: Historical romance
Release Date: June 30, 2020


After losing her husband in the Rocky Mountain wilderness, young widow Joanna Watson is struggling to make a new home for her five-year-old son, Samuel, in the little mountain town of Settler’s Fort. When she returns home from work to find Samuel and the woman watching him missing–and the sheriff dead–she enlists a man she prays has enough experience in this rugged country to help.

Isaac Bowen wants nothing more than a quiet, invisible life in these mountains, far away from the bad decisions of his past. But he has a strong suspicion of who’s behind the kidnapping and murder, and if he’s right, he knows all too well the evil they’re chasing.

As they press on against the elements, Joanna fights to hold on to hope, while Isaac knows a reckoning is coming. They find encouragement in the tentative trust that grows between them, but whether it can withstand the danger and coming confrontation is far from certain in this wild, unpredictable land.

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

I was really impressed with the writing in this book.  Immediately, I felt for Joanna.  Just surviving as a single parent in a remote mountain town would be incredibly difficult, and I felt her struggle right away.  In spite of the difficulties life had handed her, she was a loving mother, willing to do what it took to take care of her little boy.  Isaac was very likable.  He was willing to help Joanna, in spite of the terrible danger he endured.  

The bad guys were written in such a way that there was no decrease in tension in the scenes where they were featured.

The mountains.  They may have been majestic and beautiful, but they were treacherous.  The pace of the book mimicked the plodding of the horses as they made their way up, down, and around the mountains.

The romance developed at just the right pace, also:  not too fast; not too slow.

It is the second book in the Hearts of Montana series, but reads as a stand-alone.

Those who enjoy historical romances and westerns will certainly want to read this book.

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

About the Author

After working for 13 years in the corporate world, Misty M. Beller (mistymbeller.com) is now the author of fourteen independently published Christian historical romance novels. Raised on a farm in South Carolina, she combines her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life by writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters. She lives outside Charlotte, North Carolina, is an active member of ACFW, and teaches regularly at conferences and writing groups on effective book marketing.






More from Misty

The Story Behind the Story: Love’s Mountain Quest

Love’s Mountain Quest was one of the hardest books I’ve ever written, even though I LOVE Isaac and Joanna and their story. What made this book so hard was the fact that I wrote most of the story during my third trimester of pregnancy with our son!

Our little Matthew is our fourth baby (and first boy), so I was VERY heavy with child during the last three months I carried him, and that was the time that I’d scheduled to write Love’s Mountain Quest. Needless to say, the words were not flowing very well. My creativity was as exhausted as the rest of me! I could see Isaac and Joanna’s story in my mind, but showing it for readers using real words was the hard part.

Thankfully, I have an amazing editor at Bethany House (waving at Jen Veilleux!) who helped me massage the first draft, pushing both me and the story to be the very best we could be. Unfortunately for her, the edits for this book were the first bit of writing I did after taking a short maternity leave after the birth, so my brain was still a bit mushy from all the post-partum hormones and lack of sleep a newborn always brings. Jen’s patience through the process was remarkable, yet I so appreciate her determination not to stop until we had the very best book possible.

Our little Matthew just turned one, and Love’s Mountain Quest is finally making its way out into the world. Because of Jen, I’m so excited to share it with you! I can’t wait for you to meet the characters and story I love so much.

Blog Stops

Emily Yager, August 1
Reviewingbooksplusmore, August 1
Simple Harvest Reads, August 1 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)
Inklings and notions, August 2
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 2
She Lives To Read, August 3
Genesis 5020, August 3
For Him and My Family, August 3
Texas Book-aholic, August 4
Read Review Rejoice, August 4
April Hayman, Author, August 4
Betti Mace, August 5
Blossoms and Blessings, August 5
Life of Literature, August 5
For the Love of Literature, August 6
Adventures of A Travelers Wife, August 6
Daysong Reflections, August 7
Labor Not in Vain, August 7
Jeanette’s Thoughts, August 7
Older & Smarter?, August 8
Locks, Hooks and Books, August 8
Mary Hake, August 8
Through the Fire Blogs, August 9
Pause for Tales, August 9
Just Your Average reviews, August 9
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, August 10
Blessed & Bookish, August 10
Hallie Reads, August 10
Wishful Endings, August 11
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, August 11
Lighthouse Academy, August 11 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)
Artistic Nobody, August 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
Bizwings Blog, August 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the grand prize package of Love’s Mountain Quest, Hope’s Highest Mountain, and a bath bomb!!

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/fe39/love-s-mountain-quest-celebration-tour-giveaway

Book Review with a Giveaway: Tempting Tait by Chautona Havig


About the Book

Book: Tempting Tait
Author: Chautona Havig
Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance
Release Date: July 30, 2020

He chose to be a dad before he realized he’d need a wife, too.


When Tait took in an abandoned girl, he had no idea it would change his life.

Tait Stedtmann–accountant, fledgling do-it-yourselfer, and all-around nice guy. He’d been more than a little interested in Bentley Girard and had finally worked up the courage to ask her out. That was before that fateful day at the rest stop when he saw a girl shoved from a car and abandoned there.

She’s not like any girl he’s ever met, and now she’s given him an ultimatum. Adopt her baby, or she’ll abort it.

Eden doesn’t think he’ll do it. She can have the abortion and move on with her life–far away from these creepy Christians in Fairbury. But when Tait agrees, she finds herself keeping her word… and the pregnancy.

Nine months later, Tait is wracked by guilt as relief sets in when Eden leaves and terrified as he decides he can’t do this daddy thing alone. Bentley figured out how to make marriage happen for her.

Would she help him find someone, too?

Tempting Tait is the second in the Marriages of Conviction series.

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

This contemporary novel, part of the Marriages of Conviction series by Chautona Havig, takes place pretty much at the same time as Blessing Bentley, and sets the stage for the next book in the seriesThere are connections to characters in the greater Rockland area and situations from previous books that a reader of Havig's books would notice, but anyone could pick up this book and enjoy it thoroughly.

Tait was a great guy!  Kind of nerdy, not so handsome, but smart, capable, and thoughtful.  He lived out his convictions, which he proved in many tangible ways throughout the story.  My opinion of him just grew better and better as I read the book.  I loved how he and Bentley actually became friends throughout the course of the book.  

I love each visit to the Rockland area in Havig's books.  This was another meaty, but lovable, and unforgettable story.  I really loved this book, and recommend it to readers of contemporary fiction and contemporary romance.

I received an eARC 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 at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.









More from Chautona

How One Man Turns A Mess into a Miracle

It’s been ten… maybe fifteen years since Eden Pohl waltzed into my brain and settled in. Despite my focused attention on other books, her taunts never strayed far from my hearing.

If you really believed what you say about abortion, you’d tell my story.

You just don’t want to have to write the messy stuff.

Ouch. Worst of all, she was wrong. And she wasn’t.

I don’t mind attacking the hard things when it’s the right time, but I only had half a story. I knew what would not happen but not what would.

So, she languished there in what is probably the longest pregnancy in fiction.

After my friend, Sandy, killed my dreams of combining Tait and Bentley’s stories and added Tait’s (and therefore Eden’s) into a series, things clicked. Duh. Tait would need a wife. Being a single parent is hard. It isn’t how God designed things, you know? We’re supposed to have help. A spouse, extended family, the church.

But sometimes things don’t work in this fallen world. Sometimes we find ourselves parents—even by choice—without the daily support of another parent. Not only that, sometimes our own parents aren’t in a position to be able to help. Age, illness, or distance can remove us from the God-given networks we should have and don’t.

Finally, our decisions sometimes cause us to isolate ourselves even from God’s family, and the result can mean we don’t have that help that we otherwise would.

One verse came to mind over and over when I planned out the rest of Tait’s story.

Then the LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.” (Genesis 2:18)

Sometimes the words tried to transform themselves into, “It is not good for a father to be alone, so God will find him a helper parent suitable…”

And I had to silence that voice.

First, because we don’t just change Scripture to suit our purpose. Or rather, we shouldn’t.

Second, because that’s even more out of order than having a baby before marriage. It happens sometimes—sometimes by choice, as in Tait’s situation. However, the healthiest marriage will usually put a strong emphasis on the marriage relationship first (after the Lord, of course) and then focus on the children. Why? Because it is best for the children if their parents are in unity. Children find security and strength in knowing their parents love and are committed to each other.

So many times, I started to put that emphasis in the wrong place and struggled to get it right. Then one day I realized that this was the very thing I needed to do. Show that struggle. I needed to show that Tait’s focus was wrong—that he created problems he could have avoided simply by being a good daddy… but also by being an even better husband.

I hope you’ll enjoy Tait’s story, and I pray that his heart for the unborn will touch your life in a real and tangible way.

Blog Stops

Batya’s Bits, July 29
Godly Book Reviews, July 29
Among the Reads, July 30
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 30
Texas Book-aholic, July 31
Book of Ruth Ann, July 31
Inklings and notions, August 1
Cultivating Us, August 1
For Him and My Family, August 2
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, August 3
The Meanderings of a Bookworm, August 3
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, August 4
Mypreciousbitsandmusings, August 4
Aryn The Libraryan 📚, August 5
deb’s Book Review, August 5
Older & Smarter?, August 6
Back Porch Reads, August 6
Through the Fire blogs, August 7
Daysong Reflections, August 8
Pause for Tales, August 8
She Lives To Read, August 9
Spoken from the Heart, August 9
Artistic Nobody, August 10 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
Locks, Hooks and Books, August 10
Lots of Helpers, August 11
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, August 11
Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy of Tempting Tait and an original watercolor of “Tait’s Wedding”!!

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/fe37/tempting-tait-celebration-tour-giveaway

Friday, August 7, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: Irish Encounter by Hope Toler Dougherty



About the Book

Book: Irish Encounter
Author: Hope Toler Dougherty
Genre: Sweet, inspirational romance
Release Date: May 7, 2015


After almost three years of living under a fog of grief, Ellen Shepherd is ready for the next chapter in her life, perhaps an adventure during a visit to Galway. Her idea of excitement consists of exploring Ireland for yarn to feature in her shop back home, but the adventure awaiting her includes an edgy stranger who disrupts her tea time, challenges her belief system, and stirs up feelings she thought she’d buried with her husband.

After years of ignoring God, nursing anger, and stifling his grief, Payne Anderson isn’t ready for the feelings a chance encounter with an enchanting stranger evokes. Though avoiding women and small talk has been his pattern, something about Ellen makes him want to seek her—and God again.

Can Ellen accept a new life different than the one she planned? Can Payne release his guilt and accept the peace he’s longed for? Can they surrender their past pain and embrace healing together or will fear and doubt ruin this second chance at happiness?

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

Irish Encounter was a wonderful novel!  I loved that their romance began while they were both away from home, in a lovely, romantic place, where they could make wonderful memories.  Another thing that I really liked about it was that the romance did not come easily.  There were always hurdles to jump, problems to solve, and misunderstandings to resolve.  Another thing I liked was the depth of love that Ellen and Payne had for each other, even though they didn't declare it to one another for quite awhile.

Then there were the characters.  Both Ellen and Payne were authentic.  I liked that there was always more and more to learn about each of them as the story moved forward.  Not only was Ellen a businesswoman, but she was a farmer, a mom, a PTA influencer, a foreign exchange host mom, and so many other things.  Her interests and involvements were numerous.  There was always something new to learn about Payne, as well.

I also appreciated that spirituality is what brought them together and kept them together.

This is a great book that readers of contemporary romance will enjoy.  Those with a special fondness for Ireland or sheep will especially want to pick up this book.

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

Hope holds a Master’s degree in English and taught at East Carolina University and York Technical College. Forever Music is her fourth novel. Residing in North Carolina, she and her husband enjoy visits with their daughters and twin sons.








More from Hope

Inspiration Behind Irish Encounter

A few years ago, I was staring at the first day of the rest of my life. My oldest daughter was set to graduate high school in less than a month. Two years later, her sister would march right behind her, followed in two years by their twin brothers.

Life as I’d known it for the preceding eighteen years was about to change enormously.

Throughout my tenure as a stay-with-my-children mom, I’d written for publications—sporadically—but I had a portfolio of articles with my byline in print.

That May afternoon, I decided to write something for Guideposts, a magazine filled with inspirational, faith-filled stories. I’d just completed “The Life of Moses” with Bible Study Fellowship, and I envisioned sharing wisdom and insight gleaned from thirty two weeks of study.

I penned What I learned from Moses on the top line of a yellow legal pad. As soon as I wrote this fascinating title, I immediately began daydreaming—about Ireland, not Moses.

In my daydream, a woman in an Irish café scribbled in a journal. A little old man in a tweed vest approached her, introduced himself, and began talking about his late wife. I saw the wooden buttons on his vest and the Irish cap clutched in his hands. Suddenly another man, dressed in dusty safari clothes, appeared to the woman’s left, lounging at his table and eavesdropping on their conversation.

This scene interested me infinitely more than the Moses idea. I turned the page to a fresh sheet and wrote everything I saw and heard in that Irish coffee shop.

Irish Encounter began that day. I didn’t know it yet, but God did. I just hurried back every morning to my desk to see what happened next. Before writing, I’d recite Bible verses from the Moses study, like Exodus 3:12 “And God said, ‘I will be with you’” and Exodus 4:12 “Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.” (NIV)

I’d pray for guidance and help, and then I’d travel to Galway.

God led me onto this writing journey with a lot of prodding and pulling and nudges toward those interesting characters. I’m thankful every day He did, and I hope readers will enjoy the trip to Ireland with Ellen and Payne, too!

Blog Stops


Giveaway


To celebrate her tour Hope is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card & a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: Sincerely Yours by Kari Trumbo


About the Book


Book: Sincerely Yours
Author: Kari Trumbo
Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance
Release Date: July 26, 2019

What if you fell in love with a man you’d never met?


When marketing coordinator Liberty Dryden tries to help radio station owner and DJ Tom Higgs attract new listeners and advertisers, she hits a roadblock.

He refuses to meet with her, and she has no idea why.

Tom has an affliction that’s plagued him his whole life—a painfully crippling stutter. On air, he can speak to thousands, but in person, he stumbles to find every word.

After a woman stalked him, he’s convinced his fame and fortune are all women want. He’s unable to tell Liberty why he won’t meet in person. How could he explain his unfounded doubts and his own issues?

Without her, disaster looms for his station. But, meeting her might prove he’s right about women.

Liberty takes matters into her own hands and calls into his radio show… using an assumed name.  She never expects to hit it off with him. If she reveals her secret, it will put her new relationship and her job at risk.

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

Sincerely Yours is part of the Great River Romance series.  Many of the characters had been introduced previously, but I had no problem reading this as a a stand-alone.

One thing I liked about both Liberty and Tom was that they knew themselves well.  In their email interactions, they were able to describe both the good and the bad about themselves.  I loved that Liberty could name her spiritual gifts and talk about how those drove how she reacted to situations.  Then, we saw her live that out.  Both Tom and Liberty were flawed, but were willing to name those weaknesses, and were willing to change.

This novella had well-developed characters, and a plot that kept me turning pages.  I was invested in the book from beginning to end.  It also was full of spiritual insights and encouragement.  I loved how her friends Drew and Addi proved their friendship to Liberty with a close and caring relationship.

Readers of Christian fiction and contemporary romance will certainly enjoy this book.  I recommend it.

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


Kari Trumbo is a bestselling author of Christian historical and contemporary romance novels. Her books are known for characters who feel real, settings you could move to, and faith woven between the pages. She makes her home in central Minnesota with her husband of over twenty years, two daughters, two sons, and never enough time.






More from Kari

Thank you all so much for joining me on my blog tour! I’m happy to be here. I write an eclectic mix of historical (western) and contemporary (western and not) romance, sometimes with a hint of suspense woven in. I can’t help it; my education is a degree in psychology with a sociology minor focusing on criminality and deviance… the suspense just happens whether I plan it or not.

I am one of those writers who usually gets a story idea and then writes it. I usually don’t write a book just because I “should”. That being said, this is one of those books where readers asked for it and I delivered. The first story in the series is in a popular book bundle Betwixt Two Hearts. In my story, the secondary character Liberty Dryden (named after one of my readers) is a really fun character, even though she’s only in a few scenes. Readers liked her so much, they wanted her to have her own happily ever after.

Then the hard part began.

I liked Liberty and I spent a while in her head, trying to figure her out. She was a tough one because Liberty has some hurts. She feels alone and a little used. Don’t we all? But how to write that in a way where the reader wasn’t bored by her self-doubt. Because, let’s face it, it’s cool when a story touches us in a way that is familiar, but if it’s overdone…snooze. I liked the idea that because of their hurts, both characters were shy. So, I gave myself a challenge. These two couldn’t meet until later in the story, but it still had to feel like a romance.

It’s a little like the movie You’ve Got Mail, but different too.

This series was my first big step outside of the western genre (which is funny, because I’m not at all western) and that forced me to think in new ways, which helped with the characters and bringing this story to life.

My favorite poignant quote from Sincerely Yours is, “If I can’t forgive those who ask for it, it ruins my witness. I literally can’t be the love of Jesus if I’m not willing to forgive those who wronged me. Especially if they earnestly ask.”

Thank you for joining me and happy reading!

Blog Stops


Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Kari is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and signed copies of Sincerely Yours and Winter in Wonderland!!

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/fe33/sincerely-yours-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, August 3, 2020

Book Review: Line by Line by Jennifer Delamere

About the Book


Alice McNeil resolved at a young age to travel through life unencumbered by love or marriage, free to make her own decisions. A seasoned telegrapher, she's recently acquired a coveted position at an important trading firm, but when the company's ambitious junior director returns to London, things begin to change in ways Alice could never have imagined.

For Douglas Shaw, years of hard work and ingenuity enabled him to escape a life of grinding poverty. He's also determined to marry into high society--a step that will ensure he never returns to the conditions of his past.

He and Alice form a friendly relationship based on mutual respect, but anything deeper is not in their plans. However, when Alice accidentally raises the ire of a jealous and vindictive coworker who's intent on ruining her life, Alice and Douglas are forced to confront what is truly important in their lives. Will their growing bond give them the courage to risk finding a better way?

You can purchase the book here.

My Review

What set this novel apart for me was the fact that both main characters knew what they wanted out of life, and worked toward their goals.  I really was impressed with the fact that both Alice and Douglas were so comfortable in their own skin, yet were willing to learn and make changes for their betterment.

Historical romance fans will enjoy the 1880s London setting, when everything was changing so quickly, due to all the new inventions.  It was also interesting to read about what was happening concurrently in the  the American business world.  The story held an interesting mix of day-to-day work, and high-society expectations.


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

Jennifer Delamere writes tales of the past...and new beginnings. Her novels have won numerous accolades, including Romance Writers of America RITA® award finalist, a starred review from Publishers Weekly, and the Maggie Award for Excellence from Georgia Romance Writers. Jennifer holds a B.A. in English from McGill University in Montreal, Canada, where she became fluent in French and developed an abiding passion for winter sports. She's been an editor of nonfiction and educational materials for two decades. She loves reading classics and histories, which she mines for the vivid details to bring to life the people and places in her books.



Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: The Gentleman Spy by Erica Vetsch

About the Book


He only wanted a duchess for a day--but she's determined to make it a marriage for life.

When his father and older brother suddenly pass away, the new Duke of Haverly is saddled with a title he never expected to bear. To thwart the plans of his scheming family, the duke impulsively marries a wallflower. After all, she's meek and mild; it should be easy to sequester her in the country and get on with his life--as a secret agent for the Crown.

But his bride has other ideas. She's determined to take her place not only as his duchess but as his wife. As a duchess, she can use her position to help the lowest of society--the women forced into prostitution because they have no skills or hope. Her endeavors are not met favorably in society, nor by her husband who wishes she'd remain in the background as he ordered.

Can the duke succeed in relegating her to the sidelines of his life? When his secrets are threatened with exposure, will his new wife be an asset or a liability?

My Review

This is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed!  There were many layers to the plot, and the characters were written very well.  With spying among the ton during a London season, a simmering romance, and snippets of humor, this book is a winner!  It is the second book of the Serendipity & Secrets series by Vetsch, but reads well as a stand-alone.

It was easy to have understanding for Charlotte.  In spite of being beaten down by her overbearing father, she was intelligent, witty, and compassionate.  She was also searching for meaning in her life and a deeper relationship with God.

Marcus thoroughly knew his purpose in life, but having a title and its extra responsibilities thrust upon him got in the way of what he really wanted to do.  He was also a compassionate man, and one who needed to expand his way of perceiving his world.

Readers who enjoy Regency romance, historical romance, spying, and intrigue will certainly want to pick up The Gentleman Spy.

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

About the Author

Erica Vetsch is a New York Times best-selling and ACFW Carol Award–winning author. She is a transplanted Kansan now living in Minnesota with her husband, who she claims is both her total opposite and soul mate.

Vetsch loves Jesus, history, romance, and sports. When she’s not writing fiction, she’s planning her next trip to a history museum and cheering on her Kansas Jayhawks and New Zealand All Blacks.

A self-described history geek, she has been planning her first research trip to England.

Learn more about Erica Vetsch and her books at https://www.ericavetsch.com/. She can also be found on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/EricaVetschAuthor/Instagram https://www.instagram.com/ericavetsch/) and Pinterest (Erica Vetsch).



Giveaway

Click below to enter the giveaway that includes:

- A copy of Erica Vetsch's The Lost Lieutenant and The Gentleman Spy
- A library card tote bag
- A bookshelf pouch bag
- A book mug
- A Willow Tree book angel
- A book page holder



















Monday, July 27, 2020

Book Review: An Appalachian Summer

About the Book

In 1933 Louisville, Kentucky, even the ongoing economic depression cannot keep Piper Danson's parents from insisting on a debut party. After all, their fortune came through the market crash intact, and they've picked out the perfect suitor for their daughter. Braxton Crandall can give her the kind of life she's used to. The only problem? This is not the man--or the life--she really wants.

When Piper gets the opportunity to volunteer as a horseback Frontier Nursing courier in the Appalachian Mountains for the summer, she jumps at the chance to be something other than a dutiful daughter or a kept wife in a loveless marriage. The work is taxing, the scenery jaw-droppingly gorgeous, and the people she meets along the way open up a whole new world to her. The longer she stays, the more an advantageous marriage slips from her grasp. But something much more precious--true love--is drawing ever closer.

Bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart invites you into the storied hills of Eastern Kentucky to discover what happens when one intrepid young woman steps away from the restrictive past into a beautiful, wide-open future.

My Review

This book was such a pleasure to read.  

First of all, the cover is stunning!

The book was paced slowly, deliberately, so the reader is able to savor and enjoy the book.  I felt like I was experiencing the wonder and joy of new experiences and new friends, just as Piper was.  I also was pulled into the setting through wonderful descriptions-the sun shining through the trees in the morning, the crickets chirping in the evening.  It was wonderful!

This slower pace mimicked the slower pace of life in the Kentucky hills, so it was very appropriate and comfortable.  

I also felt that I had plenty of time to get to know the characters-and what a delight Piper was!  Although she had grown up in a privileged family in the city, she was anxious to help and learn what she needed in order to serve others.  That, of course, provided some humor as she adjusted to life in the country.

I highly recommend this book to all readers of Christian fiction and women's fiction.

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

About the Author

Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels--The Refuge, The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted--as well as other historical novels, including Angel Sister, These Healing Hills, and River to Redemption. She and her husband live on a farm a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. Ann enjoys discovering the everyday wonders of nature while hiking in her farm's fields and woods with her grandchildren and her dog, Frankie. Learn more at www.annhgabhart.com.


Sunday, July 19, 2020

Book Review With a Giveaway: Kentucky Bridy by Caryl McAdoo



About the Book

Book: Kentucky Bride
Author: Caryl McAdoo
Genre: Historical Christian Romance
Release Date: June 9, 2020

A Country Divided…And so is her heart.


Some might say you can’t be too fussy when almost every unattached young man is off fighting for Southern freedom, but that shouldn’t mean a rebel’s daughter has any business with a Union soldier. Forbidden love never created greater battles than Gigi’s unexpected love for a Union soldier.

A dashing Rebel Soldier. The daughter of a Federal Soldier. How will they overcome the odds and a war to be together? Find out in this twist on Romeo and Juliet.

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

Do you believe in love at first sight?

That was a concept that Gigi thought belonged only in the many books she read, until it happened to her.

Kentucky Bride, part of the North and South series, details the courtship of a young Kentucky woman and a Texas Ranger who was fighting in the Confederate Army during the Civil War.  Most of the novella takes place on the supply wagon as they travel to and from Gigi's family's general store to the Rebel army camp.  However, it was having that time together in conversation that brought Gigi and Ephraim from being acquaintances to being much more.

I liked getting to know Gigi and Ephraim, and the secondary characters were true to life.

I enjoyed this book, but I felt that the ending was rushed, and not quite finished.  I would love to read more of Gigi and Ephraim's story, and find out what happens to the other characters as well.

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

Award-winning author Caryl McAdoo prays her story brings God glory, and her best-selling stories—over fifty published—delight Christian readers around the world. The prolific writer also enjoys singing the new songs the Lord gives her; you may listen at YouTube. Sharing four children and eighteen grandsugars with Ron, her high-school-sweetheart-husband of over fifty years, she lives in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas. The McAdoos wait expectantly for God to open the next door.






More from Caryl

It thrilled me to be a part of the North and South Collection series, a thirty-seven titles by seventeen authors project headed up by Christine Sterling Bortner. One reason is that my husband and co-writer has always been a Civil War buff, and the other because it’s such a huge undertaking. I’m actually writing two titles, Kentucky in 1861 and Nevada in 1865.

The stories are broken up by the years (1861-1865) and then the years divided into the states or territories (37 in all) as to when its most major event happened. So, if a reader stays with the series, one releases every other week, they will enjoy a chronological overview of the Civil War.

This story, Kentucky Bride, is set near Bowling Green where the Confederates first set up their area headquarters. Twenty-thousand men descended on the city of seven hundred. Nearby, General Hindman had fifteen hundred men that included the 8th Calvary Regiment from Texas, a group of Texas Rangers who’d joined the effort. Of course, I had to have a Texan as a hero! 😊

My heroine is eighteen-year-old Gardenia Gladiola Garland who helps her grandfather in the family business as her papa, brother, and uncle were gone. They’d joined the Union Army several weeks before. She hates the flowery name her mother pinned on her almost as much as the war and insists on being called Gigi.

My Texas Ranger hero, Ephraim Edward Kerns is sent to meet a supply wagon and it surprises to find such a lovely young woman muleskinning. He ties his horse to the back of the wagon and takes over for her, falling in love with her intelligence, beauty, and determination practically at first sight.

This Texas author hopes readers will love these two young ones, and I’m always “Praying my story gives God glory!”

Blog Stops


Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away the grand prize of a $25 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/fe19/kentucky-bride-celebration-tour-giveaway

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Book review with a giveaway: This Ring Does Not Fit by Sunshine Rodgers




About the Book


Book: The Ring Does Not Fit
Author: Sunshine Rodgers
Genre: Romance, Fiction, Christian, Fantasy
Release Date: November 19, 2019


Alena is stuck in a mundane marriage and longing for something
different. New clothes. Bigger bling. Flashy cars. Miraculously and
inexplicably, it all happens in a flash and she is finally married to
the man of her dreams, but something still seems to be missing. In all
her excitement, the one thing she’s looking for is the one thing she
can’t seem to keep.

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

This is an eye-opening cautionary tale that is pertinent to most people.  The subject is marriage, and it is applicable to men and women before or after they are married.  Many different aspects of marriage are brought up, and more importantly, the question of what kind of person should one be, and what kind of spouse should one look for, going into marriage.

Alena was feeling dissatisfied in her life and in her marriage, something that many people have gone through at one time or another, and she truly had her eyes opened as a result of the events in this story.  She had many changes to make and her transformation was satisfying to observe.  Discovering why her husband, Lee, was like he was, was affirming.

This book is not long, and it is easy to read.  It is also a book to make one think, so I recommend it.

I received an eARC of this book through Celebrate Lit for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Author

Sunshine Rodgers is an International Best-Selling author, speaker and motivator who excels in sharing the hope and light of the gospel in her books. Her characters experience the love and grace of Jesus Christ and the beauty of Heaven. Sunshine hopes her pages will get you passionate about your faith. Her books have been made into audio books and translated in different languages. Her social media sites and personal blog reach thousands of readers a week. Sunshine has appeared in magazines, newspapers and live media interviews and is working on her merchandise line (available on her website!). Sunshine now enjoys her days traveling for signings, author events, speaking engagements and book tours.

More from Sunshine

“Why are we never satisfied? I mean, we can have houses, cars and money and still want more! If I were to break it down, I would have to say…insecurity. Maybe we feel like we’re not good enough. I don’t know about you, but I compare myself with others all the time just by looking at social media and feeling like I don’t measure up.

My book “The Ring Does Not Fit” concentrates on appreciating what is right in front of you, celebrating those who are still with you and staying humble.  Because the grass is not always greener on the other side and there is always more going on behind the scenes that we don’t know about.

I wanted to explore the issue of contentment in my book.

The only way to really get over any personal frustration and constant comparison is to have an attitude of thanksgiving and praise where you are thankful for what you have, no matter how little or big it is.
That’s the first step to loving life.”

– Sunshine Rodgers

Blog Stops

Quiet quilter, July 8
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 9
Through the Fire Blogs, July 10 (Author Interview)
deb’s Book Review, July 10
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 11
Texas Book-aholic, July 12
Blossoms and Blessings, July 13 (Author Interview)
For Him and My Family, July 14
Inklings and notions, July 15
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 16
For the Love of Literature, July 17 (Author Interview)
Andrea Carmen, July 17
Quiet Workings, July 18
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, July 19
Just Your Average reviews, July 20
Artistic Nobody, July 21 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Sunshine is giving away the grand prize of a $40 Visa 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/fda3/the-ring-does-not-fit-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, July 13, 2020

Book Review: Hometown Honey by Jessica Patch

About the Book

Welcome back to Honeyhaven!

The town is gearing up for the bicentennial and all the festivities including the annual Hometown Honey Pageant. Single mom Zayda Miller has never been a fan of pageants, particularly this one, but she needs cash and if she could pull it off and win, she could use the sweet prize money to help her achieve her dream. With zero talent or skill in the kitchen—why baking pies is part of the pageant is beyond her—she’s off to a pathetic start. When her high school sweetheart, up and coming chef, Stratton Shay returns to town for the grand event, she reluctantly allows him to help her in the kitchen, but they might be cooking up more than pies for the competition. Until they discover they both want the same thing. And for one of them to win, the other will have to lose.

You can get your copy here.

My Review

It was good to be back in Honeyhaven, a small, southern town where everyone knows everyone else.  The main characters are a group of young adults that have known each other forever, and the camaraderie and caring is wonderful.  But being in a small town, everyone knows everything about everyone else, and that can be difficult.

In this story, Zayda was really motivated to be successful in her business, so she could take care of herself and her son.  Stratton was a wonderful, godly man who was very patient with Zayda.  There were many ups and downs throughout the book, and lessons learned, and I enjoyed reacquainting myself with the characters from previous books.  The characters were very real with each other, so it may take a reader by surprise when there is some name calling in the book.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and recommend it for readers of Christian fiction and inspirational romance.

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

About the Author

Jessica R. Patch is known for her dry wit and signature twists whether she's penned a contemporary romance or romantic suspense. When she's not hunched over her laptop (or in physical therapy because she's been hunched over her laptop), you can find her cozy on the couch in her mid-south home watching way too much Netflix with her family, going on "adventures" in the name of book research, and collecting recipes to amazing dishes she'll probably never cook. Sign up for her newsletter "Patched In" at www.jessicarpatch.com. Jessica is represented by Rachel Kent of Books & Such Literary Management.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: His Pretend Amish Bride by Rachel J. Good



About the Book


Book: His Pretend Amish Bride
Author: Rachel J. Good
Genre: Amish Romance
Release Date: June 30, 2020


In a small Amish town like Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania, one solution to an indiscretion is to get married. Or perhaps, fake a respectable engagement . . .

Priscilla Ebersol has a fulfilling life teaching special needs children—until her boyfriend’s humiliating betrayal ruins her reputation and threatens her job. Shunned for something she didn’t do, Priscilla throws herself into a project on the benefits of camel’s milk for autism. Her research leads her to a newly opened Amish camel farm, where she discovers far more than she bargained for. . .

When a pushy Englisch company shows interest in shy, handsome Gabriel Kauffman’s camel farm, he struggles to get out of a sticky negotiation. Lovely, well-spoken Priscilla appears at the perfect moment and defends Gabe’s business so well that she is mistaken for his wife, a pretense they both secretly wish could be true. But though their bond deepens, Priscilla’s heart is still wounded, and Gabe battles with a troubling secret. And when a misunderstanding comes between them, it will take faith, honesty, and trust in God to overcome the past—and to allow their partnership to blossom into something more.

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

Sweet Priscilla was dumped and betrayed by her boyfriend.  Now she doesn't trust men.  Gabe has a problem with a woman from his past that keeps him from ever dating.  But they both want to start a family, and they find themselves quite attracted to one another.  They will not admit it, and while I felt their pain, it was cute.  And awkward. And comical.  But don't tell them.

Both Priscilla and Gabe were honorable, caring individuals.  They were easy to like.  The characters surrounding them were well-crafted, also.

The book was well-written.  I tend to be wary of Amish fiction because it can easily be too overdone, but this one wasn't.  It was well-paced, and easy to read.  It was also a good-sized book, with plenty of opportunity to develop the characters and plot.  I also found myself not agreeing with how this particular Amish community deals with things, and feeling a little angry, but that was a result of effective writing.  

Readers of Amish fiction and Christian fiction will be pleased to pick up this book.  

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

USA Today bestselling author RACHEL J. GOOD writes life-changing, heart-tugging novels of faith, hope, and forgiveness. She grew up near Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the setting for her Amish novels. Striving to be as authentic as possible, she spends time with her Amish friends, doing chores on their farm and attending family events.

Rachel is the author of several Amish series in print or forthcoming – the bestselling Love & Promises, Sisters & Friends, Unexpected Amish Blessings, Surprised by Love (2021), and two books in Hearts of Amish Country – as well as the Amish Quilts Coloring Books. In addition, she has stories in many anthologies, including Love’s Thankful Heart, Love’s Christmas Blessings, Plain Everyday Heroes, Love’s Truest Hope, and the forthcoming Amish Christmas Twins (September 2020) with Shelley Shepard Gray and Loree Lough. She is also the coauthor of the Prayerful Author Journey: Inspirational Yearly Planner.

More from Rachel

A few years ago, I passed an Amish camel farm in Bird-in-Hand, PA. As an author, seeing anything new or different always piques my interest, so I went for a visit. Not only did I explore the farm and store, I bought camel’s milk to drink. I think it’s important to do in-depth research for the settings and information I include in my Amish novels.

I was fascinated to discover camels usually bond to one milker, only give a little milk each day, and are extremely expensive to buy. All of those are reasons why camel’s milk is so expensive. It costs $15 for a pint. Much pricier than cow’s milk.

And if you’re wondering how camel’s milk tastes, the best way I can think of to describe it is a slightly salty version of powdered milk. It’s more watery than cow’s milk.

Because I grew up drinking powdered milk during my early childhood years when we lived in Africa, I’d always vowed never again to drink it once we moved back to the United States. A vow I’ve kept. That was never a problem living in Pennsylvania, where there’s plenty of farmland, cow, and Amish, of course.

The camel’s milk was enough like powdered milk to make me gag. But because I want to be sure my books are authentic, I drank it. So, readers, now you know how much a I care about you.

My concern for you also extends to more than just getting factual information correct. I pray for each and every one of you as I write my stories. I hope that they will touch your heart and bring you closer to God.

Blog Stops


Through the Lens of Scripture, June 29
The Avid Reader, June 29
Among the Reads, June 30
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 30
Texas Book-aholic, July 1
Blogging With Carol, July 1
Inklings and notions, July 2
Batya’s Bits, July 2
She Lives To Read, July 3
Little Homeschool on the Prairie, July 3
Splashes of Joy, July 4
reviewingbooksplusmore, July 4
For Him and My Family, July 5
Books, Life, and Christ, July 5
For the Love of Literature, July 6
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, July 6
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 7
deb’s Book Review, July 7
Blossoms and Blessings, July 7
Older & Smarter?, July 8
Jeanette’s Thoughts, July 8
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, July 8
Reading Is My SuperPower, July 9
Bigreadersite, July 9
Locks, Hooks and Books, July 10
Maureen’s Musings, July 10
Pause for Tales, July 11
Lighthouse Academy Blog, July 11 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)
Artistic Nobody, July 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
Vicky Sluiter, July 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of the book and $25 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/fcda/his-pretend-amish-bride-celebration-tour-giveaway