Saturday, October 24, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: A Christmas Tale for Little Women by Linda Brooks Davis

 

About the Book

Book: A Christmas Tale for Little Women
Author: Linda Brooks Davis
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
Release Date: September 15, 2020

Broadview is attired for Christmas. Oklahoma heiress, Adelaide Fitzgerald, is hosting two young girls who have chosen to celebrate Christmas with Auntie Addie rather than their family in Colorado.

Adelaide must give these girls a Christmas like no other. Has she thought of everything? What would top off this holiday in an extraordinary way?

The answer lies just the other side of Rock Creek. But what will it take for her to realize it is the Christmas topper she’s been seeking?

It’s 1912, and Adelaide Fitzgerald’s view of Christmas is about to emerge as a tale for a lifetime. 

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

I really enjoyed this historical Christmas novella.  The main character, Adelaide, was in a unique position to be independently wealthy, yet she was an orphan, and single.  She desired to have a family of her own, but in the meantime, used her time and fortune to bless those around her.  

Adelaide tried to make Christmas perfect for her young guests, but the events that transpired made for a memorable season and wonderful learning experiences.

There were many great lessons to be learned from this book:  Caring for those in need, loving unconditionally, standing up for the truth, living without prejudice, resolving conflict in positive ways, and confessing wrongdoings.

This novella is part of a series. It was no problem for me to enjoy this story as a stand-alone, but I found myself motivated to learn about the events that had transpired beforehand in previous books.

Readers who enjoy historical Christmas novellas will certainly enjoy this book, and anyone who has been following this series will be delighted to read this addition.

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

About the Author

Linda Brooks Davis is a lifelong Texan who devoted 40 years to special education as a therapist, teacher, and administrator. She retired in 2008 and now writes full time.

Linda’s debut novel, Amazon best-selling The Calling of Ella McFarland, Book One in the Women of Rock Creek series, is set in 1905 Indian Territory prior to Oklahoma statehood. It won Jerry Jenkins Operation First Novel in 2014 and subsequently, ACFW’s Carol award for debut novel 2016. The sequel novella, A Christmas to Remember, is set in 1908 Oklahoma. A second novella, A Christmas Measure of Love, is set in 1910 and is the prequel to Linda’s second full-length novel, which is set in 1914, Amazon best-selling The Mending of Lillian Cathleen, Book Two. The third novella, A Christmas Tale for Little Women, releases in 2020 and is set in 1912. It is a prequel to Book 3 in The Women of Rock Creek series, The Awakening of Miss Adelaide, which is set in 1918.

Linda and her beloved husband Al worship and minister at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio and dote on six grandchildren. Readers may contact Linda through her website, www.lindabrooksdavis.com.

 

More from Linda

Everyone worked at my home on a South Texas farm near the U.S. border with Mexico.

My playmates were children of Hispanic laborers. Language never hindered playing la casa, making mud pies, or rocking los bebés. Frijoles and tamales served from stew pots over open fires tasted delicioso in either language. I learned outside their homes a broom works great on hardened soil.

Daddy paid workers on Saturdays, some by the hour, others by production. Lining up, they extended their hands, and he laid cash across their open palms. They checked the figures they had scribbled on paper scraps, trusting el patrón to correct discrepancies. Humble, grateful people, they showed respect.

My father verified immigration paperwork for those whom he housed. Others lived in the shadows, arriving around sunup and disappearing before sundown. Each evening a car or truck would rattle alongside the field, and the shadow worker would slip inside. Then the vehicle would clatter toward the horizon. And returned another day.

Occasionally, however, an alarm shouted in Spanish would sound across the field. Dropping his cotton sack, a worker would dash toward the cotton trailer in the turn row. Like hounds burrowing under a house, he and a compadre would leap over the trailer’s sides and dig a hole in the freshly picked cotton. The first crawled in, and the other covered him.

The immigration officer making his rounds would walk into the field and occasionally stomp around inside the trailer, searching for man-sized lumps. I never witnessed the discovery of a shadow worker, but I heard about them on other farms. Worst of all, I heard about tragedies. With very little oxygen between tightly packed fluffs of cotton, a man could suffocate and occasionally would. I wondered what would lead a man to take such chances and how my law-abiding, God-loving father justified his complicity. So, I asked, and he answered, “Desperation, sugar. All they want is work. A man wants to provide for his family wherever or however he can. I can’t turn them away.”

Sounded like work was a gift. Huh? my ten-year-old brain asked itself.

Years later, I understood this principle. The second chapter of Genesis shows us that God created man not to laze around all day, but to work.

The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. Genesis 2:15

Therefore, not only in “the beginning,” but on our farm in 1956, a man’s strength to work was God’s gift. The opportunity to work was Daddy’s gift to the men. The fruit of each man’s labor was the gift he sent home each week and the fulfillment of his need to provide for his family.

At Christmas we enjoyed preparing bushel baskets of meats, fruits and vegetables, candy and nuts, and toys for each family. I wondered about those who stayed around for a single day. Would their children find fruits, nuts, or even a piece of candy on Christmas morning?

Answers evaded me then—-as they do now—-but as a writer in my eighth decade of life, one truth I hold onto is that the strength for each day of writing and less pain in my arthritic hands and back are gifts from God. Each opportunity to write is an opportunity not only to entertain but to inspire readers to seek God in their everyday lives. Each word, unique turn of a phrase, or plot idea . . . is my gift to Him.

Protecting our safety is a far more complicated endeavor in 2020 than it was in 1956. Threats arise like none presented five decades ago, but work is still a gift. God wired it into our DNA. Come to think of it, the ideas for A Christmas Tale for Little Women and the subsequent novel—one set in the southern tip of Texas, a story about a loving, destitute man who wants only to provide for his family—are gifts.

Those diligent workers of 1956 and other years deserve a story that honors them. My gift to them and to Him is A Christmas Tale for Little Women.

Thank you, Lord.

Note: Photos from Pixabay

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 20
Blogging With Carol, October 20
Through the Lens of Scripture, October 21
Connect in Fiction, October 21
Get Cozy Book Nook, October 21
She Lives To Read, October 22
Artistic Nobody, October 22 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)
For Him and My Family, October 23
deb’s Book Review, October 23
Splashes of Joy, October 23
Connie’s History Classroom, October 24
Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 24
Locks, Hooks and Books, October 25
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 25
Mary Hake, October 25
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 26
Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 26
KarenSueHadley, October 27
lakesidelivingsite, October 27
Pause for Tales, October 27
Older & Smarter?, October 28
Inklings and notions, October 28
Betti Mace, October 29
Captive Dreams Window, October 29
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 29
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 30
CarpeDiem, October 30
Texas Book-aholic, October 31
Batya’s Bits, October 31
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 1
Moments, November 1
Lighthouse Academy Blog, November 1 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)
Sara Jane Jacobs, November 2
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 2

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Linda is giving away the grand prize package of all 6 eBooks in the The Women of Rock Creek Series!! (The Calling of Ella McFarland, A Christmas to Remember, A Christmas Measure of Love, The Mending of Lillian Cathleen, A Christmas Tale for Little Women, and The Awakening of Miss Adelaide)

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/10264/a-christmas-tale-for-little-women-celebration-tour-giveaway


Book Review with a Giveaway: Sand & Mistletoe by Chautona Havig

About the Book

Book:  Sand & Mistletoe
Author: Chautona Havig
Genre:  Contemporary Christian Romance (Holiday)
Release Date: November 24, 2018

What’s Christmas without family drama, an accident, and mistletoe?

If you ask Portia Spears, it’s a horror movie—especially since she’s never the one caught under that mistletoe. And who thought it was a good idea to spend the last Christmas as a family unit away from their family home?

Her bossy older sisters, that’s who.

Christmas at his parents’ house with his son—just the way Reese Whitaker likes it. But a chance encounter on the beach might just change everything. How often do you meet someone who loves kids and knows American Sign Language?

Not often. Trust him.

However, with just two weeks to get to know each other and two families that couldn’t be more different vying for their time, will they even have a chance to test out that mistletoe they found?

Find out today in Sand & Mistletoe. 

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

What do sand and mistletoe have to do with each other?  That's what Portia was wondering herself.  Her family had rented a house by the beach-for Christmas!  Nothing would be traditional about this holiday.

Portia is kind, capable, and well-read.  At 25, her romantic experience was entirely what she had read in books or watched in movies, until she met Reese.  Reese is a single father of a deaf boy, and his concern is always for his son, Duncan.

Like Reese, I loved how Portia connected to Duncan right away.  I especially loved how their romance progressed.  Both were surprised, and scared, and unsure how to proceed.

Family dynamics, expectations, and emergencies, combined with "meeting the parents" worries, made this a very complete and interesting book.  Romance readers will want to pick up this Christmas novella.  Fans of Havig's work will not want to miss this one.

I received an e-ARC 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

What Happens When an Author Rewrites History

To be fair, almost none of us wanted to be there.

And really, that wasn’t fair. Two of our daughters planned as a “destination Christmas” bash for the whole family—just a nice getaway in San Diego for the “last” Christmas we’d probably all be in the same place on the same days.  The kids were getting older, getting married, and even moving out of state. It was a beautiful thing for them to try to do for us.

But Havigs are homebodies who like their traditions, and most of us left in Ridgecrest weren’t too thrilled being “dragged” four hours south to celebrate Christmas in a beautiful house on a cliff overlooking the San Diego countryside.  It had everything, game room, lots of space, yards, hiking trails, an infinity pool, a hot tub…

Yeah. That hot tub kicked off the weekend with a splash all right.  With no lighting around it, and no railing either, my husband stepped out of it and right off the ledge—down a hill (at least fifteen feet), bouncing off boulders and thankfully, stopped by a fence. Otherwise, he’d have rolled for a LONG way.

Get this.  He broke nothing.  Don’t even ask me how (because we all know Who took care of that, right?).

Still, I spent my Christmas Eve sitting in an ER waiting for someone to tell us the damage (superficial scrapes and deep bruising). The whole time I thought, “This has got to be a book.”

Two years later, it was.

I say this at the end of the book, but I need to say it again.

People who know our family will recognize some of my kids (I left four of them out of the story).  They will also say, “Wait, she’s not like that!”

And that’s the point.  I put just enough of real people in it to really capture the feel of the personalities, meshed some quirks (including the ones that got left out), and then set them in a stressful situation and really way over-exaggerated actual responses.  I want to say this here again.  None of us acted just like I portrayed us in Sand & Mistletoe (although, frankly, I wouldn’t have blamed a couple of them if they’d wanted to). Unlike A Bird Died, I didn’t even try to stick to facts.

Instead of San Diego hill country, I put us at my favorite beach—Ventura. I stuck our rented beach house where the Pierpont Inn is/used to be (don’t even know if it exists anymore). Reese’s parents live in the house I lived in when I was nine—right there on Pierpont just a block from the beach.  And where they went to get mistletoe… one of my favorite places in the world.

So, here’s my version of the tale—the one I wrote instead of told.  Just like Francie Nolan learned from her teacher in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.  When I tell the story, I tell it exactly how it happened.  However… I wrote what should (not) have happened!  (this is much more interesting than the real story).

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 12
Emily Yager, October 12
The Book Chic Blog, October 12
Inklings and notions, October 13
Get Cozy Book Nook, October 13
For Him and My Family, October 14
Blogging With Carol, October 14
deb’s Book Review, October 15
lakesidelivingsite, October 15
Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 16
Splashes of Joy, October 16
Labor Not in Vain, October 16
She Lives To Read, October 17
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 17
Locks, Hooks and Books, October 18
Mary Hake, October 18
Livin’ Lit, October 19
Artistic Nobody, October 19 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)
Sara Jane Jacobs, October 20
Spoken from the Heart, October 20
Lots of Helpers, October 21
Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 21
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 22
Batya’s Bits, October 22
As He Leads is joy, October 23
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 23
Simple Harvest Reads, October 24 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
SusanLovesBooks, October 24
Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 25
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 25
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the prize package including a signed paperback & a handmade 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/101f6/sand-mistletoe-celebration-tour-giveaway

Friday, October 16, 2020

Book Review: The Plans We Made by Kathryn Cushman and Lauren Beccue

 About the Book

When past secrets hold the only key to hope for the future…

Caroline Chapman is reeling from a broken engagement. Determined to start again, she moves cross-country for her dream job of planning events in the historical mansions of Newport, Rhode Island. Just as her life is getting back on track, she gets an email that shakes her very foundations.

Linda Riley’s life looks picture perfect - a wonderful husband, two great kids, involved in church and the community. Then comes the diagnosis that shatters the facade. In order to save her son’s life, she must reveal secrets that can rip everything apart.

Connected by more than painful circumstances, these two women discover a sacred bond. In this beautiful story of love, loss, and the fight for life, Caroline and Linda experience the reality that life doesn’t always go according to The Plans We Made.

You can purchase your copy here.

My Review

Nobody asks for relationships to go south, or for cancer to take over their family.  But the characters in this book had to deal with that, and more, and they did so in a way that was very real and relatable - so much so that I wanted to pray for them and ask others to pray, also!

I found Caroline to be fun and quirky, yet competent and well-spoken.  I could relate to her being in a new place all by herself, for I've been there more than once.

What was great about this book was all the relationships between characters, whether established or new.  I also loved the theme of doing what is right, even when it is difficult or inconvenient.

I highly recommend this book to readers of Women's fiction and contemporary Christian fiction.  I enjoyed it immensely.

I received a copy of the book from the authors, through Audra Jennings PR, for review purposes.  The thoughts expressed here are my own.

About the Authors

Kathryn Cushman graduated with a degree in pharmacy from Samford University. After hanging up her lab coat, she shifted her focus toward writing. Her previous works have received multiple nominations for both the Carol Award and the Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award. The Plans We Made is her tenth published novel.

Learn more at kathryncushman.com. Follow Kathryn on Facebook (@authorkathryncushman) and Instagram (katiecushman1).


Lauren Beccue graduated from Holy Cross with a BA in English and now lives with her family in Santa Barbara. She writes about faith and family, with an emphasis on agricultural passages of the Bible. This is her first novel.

Learn more at laurenbeccue.com. Follow Lauren on Facebook (@beccue.lauren) and Instagram (@lauren_beccue).

Author Giveaway


MAKE YOUR PLANS IN PENCIL!
Now, go buy your copy of The Plans We Made online or at a local bookstore, then be sure to head to Lauren’s website to claim your bonus freebie!

THREE CUSTOM PENCILS:
Make Your Plans in Pencil
The Plans We Made
Proverbs 19:21
Just contact Lauren with your name, address, and where you purchased the book, and she’ll send you a set. That's it! (US only and get 'em while they last.)

Giveaway


Here's the link for the giveaway:

https://www.audrajennings.com/2020/10/win-copy-of-plans-we-made.html
















Book Trailer

You'll want to watch this!

https://youtu.be/xAWDVpoFMvU






Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: Phoebe's Secret by Sydney Tooman Betts

 

About the Book

Book: Phoebe’s Secret

Author: Sydney Tooman Betts

Genre: Christian Fiction, Historical Mystery

Release Date: June 20, 2020

In April of 1843, Phoebe’s family hears about a murder while they are traveling to their new home in the Shenandoah Valley. They arrive to learn the victim attended the church her father has agreed to pastor and the crime took place on a leading church member’s plantation.

Eager to make new friends, Phoebe forms a unique relationship that propels her into the middle of the mystery, and she begins to question several acquaintances’ motives. Will she uncover their secrets before the plantation owner’s charming son discovers hers?

Click here to get your copy today!

My Review

This story hooked me from the very beginning, because I live in the area where it takes place.  But as the story progressed, my attention was held by all the things Phoebe had to deal with at one time-moving to a new area, caring for her family in her mother's absence, the strange sounds in her new home, meeting new people, and so much more!  Phoebe, becoming a young woman, was not only pretty and accomplished, but she was also bright and well-spoken.

She and her family were immediately pulled into a murder investigation and multiple conversations about slavery.  There were many lessons to be learned from Phoebe's father, Reverend Farrell, as he guided his family with wisdom.

The mystery was solved, and the story ended well, but there is more to come, so I am looking forward to reading more about Phoebe and her family.  Fans of historical fiction and mystery will be sure to enjoy this story.

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

Sydney Tooman Betts resides with her husband near the extensive cavern system that inspired the setting for several chapters in her series The People of the Book.

While single, Ms. Betts (B.S. Bible/Missiology, M.Ed) took part in a variety of cross-cultural adventures in North and Central America. After marrying, she and her husband lived in Europe and the Middle East where he served in various mission-support capacities. Her teaching experiences span preschool to guest lecturing at the graduate level.

Before penning her first novel, A River too Deep, she ghost-wrote several stories for an adult literacy program.

More from Sydney

Proverbs 25:11 says, “Words spoken fitly are like apples of gold in settings of silver.” I was not a great reader as a child, but I loved stories. We remember stories, whether told through movies, good sermon illustrations, parables, or simple  novels.

Think of something you’ve read in the Bible. Did an instructional verse, a narrative, or a parable leap to mind? Stories have power because we can relate to them. We see ourselves in the shoes of the main character and ask what we might do in the situation. Mysteries, a new genre for me to write, are a little different. You are in the puzzle with the main character, working out the solution as you both come across the clues. I hope you will enjoy joining Phoebe in her first mystery as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Recipe

Sally Lunn Bread

1 cup water
1 cup milk
¼ pound unsalted butter
8 cups of high-gluten or bread flour
⅔ cup sugar
2 tablespoons salt
¼ cup yeast
6 eggs

In a saucepan, combine water, milk and butter. Heat until the butter is very soft.

In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients with half the flour. Add the warm liquid, and mix well to form a smooth batter.

Add 3 eggs, one at a time, and mix well. Add another cup of the flour, and mix well. Add the second 3 eggs, one at a time. Add the remaining flour, and mix until the flour has been incorporated and the batter has formed a smooth ball. The dough should be less firm than bread and more firm than a batter.

Put the dough in a clear bowl with a little oil and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Proof until double in volume. Divide the dough between two bundt pans or two loaf pans, or one of each. Proof again until risen and doubled in volume.  Bake at 350° for about 20 minutes. Makes 20 servings.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, September 29
deb’s Book Review, September 30
Inklings and notions, October 1
For the Love of Literature, October 2
Blogging With Carol, October 2
For Him and My Family, October 3
Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 4
Mary Hake, October 4
Locks, Hooks and Books, October 5
Artistic Nobody, October 6 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)
Pause for Tales, October 6
Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 7
Connie’s History Classroom, October 8
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 8
Sara Jane Jacobs, October 9
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9
Splashes of Joy, October 10
Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 10 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)
Betti Mace, October 11
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 11
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 12
Maureen’s Musings, October 12

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Sydney is giving away the grand prize package of $25 Amazon gift card and a softback copy of Phoebe’s Secret!!

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/10194/phoebe-s-secret-celebration-tour-giveaway


Cover Reveal: The Nature of a Lady by Roseanna M. White

About the Book

1906 – Lady Elizabeth "Libby" Sinclair, with her love of microscopes and nature, isn’t exactly a hit in society. She flees to the beautiful Isles of Scilly for the summer...and stumbles into the dangerous secrets left behind by her holiday cottage’s former occupant, also called Elizabeth, who mysteriously vanished.
Oliver Tremayne—gentleman and clergyman—is determined to discover what happened to his sister, and he’s happy to accept the help of the girl now living in what should have been Beth’s summer cottage…especially when he realizes it’s the curious young lady he met briefly two years ago, who shares his love of botany and biology. But the hunt for his sister involves far more than nature walks, and he can’t quite believe all the secrets Beth had been keeping from him.
As the two work together, along with Libby’s maid—his cousin—they find ancient legends, pirate wrecks, betrayal, and the most mysterious phenomenon of all: love.

@roseannamwhite #thenatureofalady #thesecretsoftheisles

The Cover

I love the colors!  


 



Monday, October 5, 2020

Book Review with a Giveaway: Wish Upon a Star by Tabitha Bouldin

 

About the Book

Book:  Wish Upon A Star
Author: Tabitha Bouldin
Genre:  Holiday Fiction
Release Date: December 1, 2018

Bryce Masters had everything he needed…or so he thought. His six-year-old daughter, Anna, would disagree. They were going home, moving back to Jingle Junction where Bryce would take over the local bookstore just in time for Christmas. Losing his wife, Molly, during the birth of their daughter six years ago was tragic, but Bryce has no idea just how much it weighs on young Anna’s heart until she confesses her deepest wish. What Anna wants for Christmas is a mother, but Bryce’s heart is not ready to love again. Only God can give Bryce the desire to make Anna’s wish come true. Only He can heal the hurt and open Bryce’s heart to the power of love. But Bryce will have to be willing to listen. And when the perfect woman reveals a secret that could devastate them all, will Bryce be able to look beyond what was and accept what might be?

Click here to get your copy!

My Review

Wish Upon a Star is a light, encouraging Christmas story.  The main character of this romance novella was single-father and widower Bryce Masters.  His six-year-old daughter, Anna, is now old enough to see what she is missing by not having a mother, so she makes that her Christmas wish.  I loved reading about Bryce's strength as a father:  He prayed about the matter and was open to God's leading.

I could feel the excitement of their new adventure, the contentment of moving back home, and the good will of living in a small town.  A few who-not-to marry scenes added levity.  

The one thing I felt was lacking was that I didn't feel like I knew Rachel very well.  Looking in from the outside, however, the connection she and Anna had spoke volumes, so I was pleased with the conclusion.

For those who love a Christmas romance in a winter wonderland, you'll enjoy the Christmas decorating, skating, and sledding.

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

Tabitha Bouldin has a Bachelor’s in creative writing from Southern New Hampshire University, where she graduated with honors. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and has been published with Chicken Soup for the Soul. When she’s not homeschooling her kids, you’ll find her curled up with a book. Tabitha’s genre of choice is Contemporary Christian Romance which she describes as: Adventure with heart.

 


More from Tabitha

Wish Upon a Star owes its existence to Hallmark’s Christmas movies. I could, and often do, watch their Christmas movies all through the year. Doesn’t matter how cheesy the story line, I love them all. While I wanted to bring that sense of fun and feel-good romance, I needed a little oomph. So, I took some inspiration from “The Christmas Shoes” by NewSong. For the record, I love Hallmark and NewSong equally, so putting the two together was a natural fit.

The intention wasn’t to make a sad Christmas story, but there’s some pain Bryce has to manage while learning to love again. The best things come from overcoming that thing you never thought you could do. When you press on, with God’s guidance and with His approval, anything is possible. Bryce needs this reminder that even in the darkest nights, God is there.

Wish is part of the funky town I created and dubbed Jingle Junction, a place where it’s all Christmas all the time. Jingle Junction has only a few rules. First off, you can have any business you want, as long as the business name is an alliteration. Second, community is the name of the game. When someone’s in need, everyone pitches in to help.

For this story, I wanted to highlight homecoming. To do that, I needed Bryce to have a reason to come back to Jingle Junction. That’s where the song came in. If you don’t know the song, it’s about a little boy who wants only one thing for Christmas, and that’s a pair of shoes for his dying mother. I listen to “The Christmas Shoes” at least a dozen times a year. It’s heartbreaking but wonderful. It has that bit of hope I needed for Wish. For my story, Bryce’s daughter, Anna, lost her mother when she was born. The only thing she wants is the one thing she’s never had: a mother. It’s also the one thing Bryce cannot give.

The plan had always been to return to Jingle Junction. Bryce wants to raise Anna in the hometown where he was born, and he’s finally gotten the opportunity to make good on the plans he and his wife made when they first learned of her pregnancy. It took him six years to make good on his promise, and he’s not sure he’s made the right decision.

Wish Upon a Star is one of those books where I wanted to challenge myself by writing only from the male point of view. Although I always write alternating point of view in my romances, Wish has always been Bryce’s story. A story of coming home.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 23
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 24
deb’s Book Review, September 24
Texas Book-aholic, September 25
Inklings and notions, September 26
21st Century Keeper at Home, September 26
For Him and My Family, September 27
CarpeDiem, September 27
Locks, Hooks and Books, September 28
Older & Smarter?, September 29
lakesidelivingsite, September 29
Artistic Nobody, September 30 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)
Batya’s Bits, September 30
Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 1
Emily Yager, October 1
She Lives To Read, October 2
Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 3
Pause for Tales, October 3
Sara Jane Jacobs, October 4
Connect in Fiction, October 4
Spoken from the Heart, October 5
Just Your Average reviews, October 5
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 6
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 6

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Tabitha is giving away the grand prize package a $25 Amazon gift card and 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.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10114/wish-upon-a-star-celebration-tour-giveaway


Sunday, October 4, 2020

Book Review: The Lost Heir by Candee Fick

The Lost Heir


In Regency England, news travels slowly. Especially in Yorkshire.

Overnight, Kathleen Harris, a foundling raised by a vicar and his wife, becomes the ward of the Earl of Wiltshire and is set on a direct path to a London season. Now miles from home, will her heart outgrow her small Yorkshire village and the love of her childhood friend?

Reuben Cooke, a quality weaver in a region where the woolen industry thrives, supports his widowed mother and hopes to marry soon. However, after the local vicar dies, his dreams of a quiet life with Kathleen at his side quickly unravel as they are ripped apart by societal conventions.

Can true love survive the distance when the road back to happily-ever-after is littered with secrets, a scandal, and a shocking revelation?

If you like faith-based fiction, sweet romance, and satisfying emotional reunions, then you’ll love this Regency era tale from the Within the Castle Gates series by Candee Fick. Get The Lost Heir and be spun into another world.

My Review

The Lost Heir, Book Three in the Within the Castle Gates series, is a sweet Regency romance that you won't want to miss.  It is definitely a stand alone novel.

Reuben and Kathleen both are of humble means, but are full of love for each other and their families.  They are looking forward to their upcoming marriage when circumstances change for both of them.  They remain true to themselves and their love.  Kathleen's intelligence, loyalty, and plain-spokenness influences even more people.  Reuben's hard work and vision come to fruition as his ingenuity helps many in his village and the surrounding area to better themselves.

It was such a blessing to read this story and see how everything worked out for the good - not just for Reuben and Kathleen, but for those close to them, as well.

Readers of Christian fiction and Regency romance will certainly enjoy this book.

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

About the Author

Candee Fick is a multi-published award-winning author. She is also the wife of a high school football coach and the mother of three children, including a daughter with a rare genetic syndrome. When not busy writing, editing, or coaching other authors, she can be found cheering on the home team at sporting events, exploring the great Colorado outdoors, indulging in dark chocolate, and savoring happily-ever-after endings through a good book.

In addition to writing clean faith-based romance novels and inspirational non-fiction, Candee coaches other authors with their marketing plans and offers content editing to aspiring novelists. She is a member of both American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Christian Proofreaders and Editors Network. Her fiction has semi-finaled, finaled, and won the ACFW Genesis Contest and Selah Awards.