Saturday, April 4, 2020

Grasping Hope


When dreams turn into nightmares what’s left to hold onto?

Katie McGowan knows her fears are irrational. They’re also beyond her control. Her mind says her fiancé is faithful, but the betrayal of her past love ignites a fear stronger than her trust. Attempts to overcome it are unsuccessful. Nothing banishes her panic attacks for good. Dreading Austin’s response if he finds out about her struggle to trust, Katie hides the truth nearly destroying their relationship.

It takes a lesson in hope to start healing. Katie is released from the nightmares holding her captive to enjoy the blessings God has given. But when tragedies change her life forever, Katie’s understanding of hope is challenged. Unresolved anger and disappointment leave Katie doubting the sincerity of her beliefs. Desperate to prove her faith and minimize her failure as a believer, Katie buries her feelings beneath all the right words. Katie must learn where true hope is found or risk losing her faith under the weight of the things she has lost.

My thoughts: I love how this story spans more time than I originally realized, as it covers Katie's journey to face her trust issues. She develops as a character through out the story as she works through her pain to reach towards hope found in Christ. Life doesn't promise to be perfect for those who seek to follow Him, but He does promise peace in the middle of the storm, which is exactly what Katie learns.
This is an excellent story with a wonderful message!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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About the Author:
Heather Greer is a pastor’s kid and pastor’s wife from southern Illinois. Though her nest is quickly approaching the empty stage, with three of her four children out on their own, she enjoys the times she gets to spend with all her children, husband, and grandson. Equal mix geek and romantic, you could as easily find Heather watching an episode of Doctor Who as the latest Hallmark movie. Of course, you may find her baking, reading, or crafting too!

Heather’s writing and teaching ministries revolve around a passion to see believers grow in their faith. Though God has used her most often with teens and adults, she has worked in ministries reaching all age groups through the years. It is Heather’s prayer for God to use what she writes in her books and on her blog to challenge and encourage readers in their faith walks.





More from Heather
Often, we throw around the word hope as if it’s a fancy replacement for a wish. Nothing could be further from the truth. Godly hope is more than wishing our circumstances were different without any indication that our desire could become reality. When our hope is based on who God is and what He has promised in His word, it becomes something to anchor us in the troubling times we go through. It is what allows us to give the circumstances that weigh us down to God and go on living life even though physically there may be no changes in what’s happening.

Hope isn’t pretending the bad stuff isn’t there. And it isn’t acting as if the hard things don’t hurt. Hope doesn’t erase the hurt or ignore the problems, but it does free us from allowing our emotions and circumstances to control us. Hope lets us have peace that makes no sense to the rest of the world. Hope allows us to rest in the middle of the trial. Hope based on scriptural truths allows us to live with joy even when things aren’t going our way.

As I wrote Grasping Hope, God took me to places that challenged and grew my own understanding of what it means to have hope as an anchor to our souls (Hebrews 6:19). When I started writing, I had no idea the path God would take me down to show me just how little I understood about hope. It’s something I never want to repeat and wouldn’t wish on anyone. But the lessons I learned grew me as a believer, and it is my prayer that what I learned through this difficult time in my life comes through clearly for everyone who reads Grasping Hope.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Heather is giving away the grand prize of $25 Amazon gift card!!

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

Friday, April 3, 2020

Light of Mine


Light of Mine, introduces Lauren (12), Aiden (9), and Ethan (5) who bear the responsibility of keeping their Father’s newly constructed Tower of Light shining in his absence.

Darkness is spreading through Zoura. Beyond the borders of the heathlands, innocent animals are being turned into monsters, and good men into pawns of the Dark One. Father has vanished after joining the Mighty Mercenaries and mother has gone missing in search of him.

Alone on the farm, twelve-year-old Lauren and her brave little brothers, Aiden and Ethan, must guard the Tower of Light that will guide both parents home. But when a hooded stranger is caught trespassing the farm, and a new bishop claims the church, confusion pervades their close-knit community. Will the children be able to recognize who is a threat to the Tower and who is there to help them protect it?

With little else but the aid of a trio of blessed pets, three mysterious weapons, and their growing faith, Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan find it is up to them to stop the agents of The Dark One from putting out the Light and dooming the heathlands to Darkness.

Fans of Little House on the Prairie will feel at home in the series’ classic farmstead setting, and the sincerity of the children’s love for one another— nurtured by the example of their parents—will bring a smile to readers and listeners of all ages.

Read Light of Mine aloud to your family or confidently give it to your middle grade reader, knowing he or she will be ensconced in a wholesome and riveting experience, beginning to end.

My thoughts: We love to read together as a family! My kids enjoy being read to, so I was thrilled to receive this book that was geared towards them! It immediately won them over, since the siblings in it mirror my childrens birth order. The world building with the story is excellent and held our attention. I love how relateable the characters are, as they learn to work together. This is an excellent story to pick up! I look forward to reading more by the author.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

About the Author:
Allen Brokken is a teacher at heart, a husband and father most of all. He’s a joyful writer by the abundant grace of God. Follow his endeavors @towersoflight, @twodadsandajoke, and http://www.brokken.net. Your children can grow their own faith and love of God by following the adventures of Lauren, Aiden, and Ethan (plus their pets!) at instagram.com/towersoflight.

Stay tuned for book two, launching in June 2020, and book three in December 2020.

The faith journey continues! Onward and upward.



More from Allen
When my kids were young there was really nothing better than getting out of my car at the end of a long day at work and having my three little kiddos run up to me and give hugs because Daddy’s Home! As a Father of three young children I was very concerned about the direction society was taking. I wasn’t sure that with how things were going that I had the knowledge or the skill to train them up in the way they should go, as the Bible directs.
Then in 2008 I took a new job that had me traveling four days a week. It was one of the hardest times of my life, the stress of a high pressure job, the loneliness of being on the road, and uncertainty of being a young parent really brought me to the end of myself. However, all of the travel gave me a lot of time to study the scriptures and learn from the writing of great bible teachers.

It was during this time that I began to write stories for my children. At first I brought my children’s stuffed animals to life for silly adventures. But then one day while we were putting together a play fort in our back yard I saw a sunrise pattern in the wood in the top of the tower. I thought:

“What if there was a Tower of Light shining God’s goodness over the children and their animals?”

“What if the children experienced the indwelling of the holy spirit in a real way like Sampson or David?”

“What if the full armor of God was physical armor they could use to defeat the darkness?”

As I shared my story with my children, they loved it.

I believe you and your children will love it too.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate his tour, Allen is giving away the 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 here to enter.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Before I Called You Mine



Lauren Bailey may be a romantic at heart, but after a decade of matchmaking schemes gone wrong, there's only one match she's committed to now--the one that will make her a mother. Lauren is a dedicated first-grade teacher in Idaho, and her love for children has led her to the path of international adoption. To satisfy her adoption agency's requirements, she gladly agreed to remain single for the foreseeable future; however, just as her long wait comes to an end, Lauren is blindsided by a complication she never saw coming: Joshua Avery.

Joshua may be a substitute teacher by day, but Lauren finds his passion for creating educational technology as fascinating as his antics in the classroom. Though she does her best to downplay the undeniable connection between them, his relentless pursuit of her heart puts her commitment to stay unattached to the test and causes her once-firm conviction to waver.

With an impossible decision looming, Lauren might very well find herself choosing between the two deepest desires of her heart . . . even if saying yes to one means letting go of the other.

My thoughts: This is such a beautiful story of how we think we have things figured out as far as how life should go, only to have life turned on its head not just once, but twice. That's how Lauren's story is. For as long as she has remembered, she has wanted to be a mother. When life didn't follow the traditional pattern of marriage and then children, and with no man in sight, she is eagerly awaiting the news of being matched with a child to adopt internationally. And then, Joshua enters the picture. I loved how true to life this story was! I could totally relate to Lauren, with thinking you have your future figured out, only to find out that God has other plans. The characters are amazing! And the would be romance. *swoon* I can't recommend this story enough!
I received this book from Bethany House. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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The Merchant's Yield


It was a marriage of inconvenience, but life has a wicked sense of humor.

Charlotte Amelia Etheridge has cowered to her mother’s sharp tongue and endless demands for the last time. In a fleeting moment of rebellion, she recklessly asks a foreigner from the Leeward Islands for a dance. But her one courageous act lands her in a compromising position. Forced to wed a stranger, Lottie leaves the only home she’s ever known to reside on the isle of St. Kitts.

Nathaniel Winthrop’s troubles are mounting, and the rumors of him being cursed are spreading. Due to the dwindling sugar crop, he risks everything to start his own shipping company. The last thing he needs is a wife, especially one with a weak constitution. Yellow fever has already claimed the lives of his mother and siblings. He must guard his heart against falling in love with this gentle beauty, knowing island life will be a death sentence.

No longer under her mother’s scrutiny, the newfound freedom of the island rejuvenates Lottie’s spirit. If her days on this earth are limited, then it’s time she lives life to the full. Now it’s up to her to prove that even though Nathan was coerced into marrying her, she’s the one he can’t live without.

My thoughts: Another wonderful Regency island story by Lorri! When Charlotte-Lottie-Etheridge decides to rebel against her controlling mother and have a bit of freedom, things snowball quickly into Lottie winding up with a marriage of convenience. She and her new groom must navigate their new relationship along with the perils of the time period and living on an island.
I love this series! The historical aspect is fascinating. Lorri does a wonderful job of bringing the characters to life.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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About the Author:
Lorri Dudley has been a finalist in numerous writing contests and has a master’s degree in Psychology. She lives in Ashland, Massachusetts with her husband and three teenage sons, where writing romance allows her an escape from her testosterone filled household. Find her online at www.lorridudley.com.



More from Lorri
The Merchant’s Yield is the second book in the Leeward Island series. The idea for my heroine, Lottie Etheridge, stemmed from a writing prompt—Pretend you are a relative from your past. My family has often speculated where the bright red hair that pops up every other generation (my dad, my cousin, and my niece) originated, since my grandfather was adopted. My opening hook at one time was Lottie’s mother stating, “Red hair is for opera singers and ballet dancers. You should have powdered your hair.”

In my research about the island of St. Kitts, I came across a French-American pirate named Jean Lafitte, educated at the military academy on St. Kitts. The concept of my hero, Nathaniel Winthrop, a merchant who could have schooled with a pirate, set my creative juices flowing, especially after reading about Lafitte’s outlandish and quirky behavior. I couldn’t resist interlacing the lives of my main characters with the daring pirate.

I enjoyed writing Lottie’s struggle between pacifying others, yet trying to stay true to how God made her. Also, I can relate to her attempts at rebellion backfiring, for I too could never get away with anything. Lottie’s soft heart contrasts nicely with the guarded hero, Nathan, as she peels back each painful layer of his thick façade to reveal the devoted and ardent love he holds beneath.

To learn more, check out my website at lorridudley.com or watch The Merchant’s Yield’s book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQLKqJfMf0o&feature=youtu.be

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Lorri is giving away the 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 here to enter.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

For Whom the Sun Sings


The world is blind…then one boy is born with sight.

Nestled in a mountain haven, the remaining people of the world live in a village that is ordinary but strict. A severe peace must be kept severely, as they say. It’s all that keeps them from descending into the chaos that claimed the world a hundred years ago.
Led by the Prophet Valdas and his Regents, the villagers work, play, marry, and have families. They gather in ceremony once a year to celebrate their Day of Remembrance. Life is planned, precise, and predictable until the special abilities of eleven-year-old Andrius threaten to undermine it all.

My thoughts: This book is excellent! I love the mystery to the story as it starts out and the multiple layers that the reader must pull back to get the full picture. The characters and story line are both simple and complex, making this story hard to put down. The allegory is beautiful and the descriptions remind me a bit of C.S. Lewis. This is a wonderful piece of speculative fiction to escape into!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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About the Author:
W. A. Fulkerson is the author of ten books, including Writing With Purpose: A Step-By-Step Guide to Producing Your Best Book. He works in film as a screenwriter, having written the award-winning documentary Save My Seoul with Jubilee Media. He teaches regularly at San Diego Writers, Ink in Point Loma, CA. Fulkerson is a voracious reader across genres, but J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Isaac Asimov, Michael Crichton, T. H. White, Pablo Neruda, and John Donne are particular favorites. In his free time, he enjoys coaching wrestling, training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and studying languages. He lives in San Diego with his wife and son.



More from W.A. Fulkerson
You know the feeling.

Your co-worker is clearly lying again and again, but your boss doesn’t see it. People in your neighborhood keep voting for the same crooked politicians, but they don’t listen when you suggest an alternative. You know you’d be the perfect couple if he/she only gave you a chance. You’ve found the secret to living a better, freer life, but no one else cares to participate.

Sometimes, it seems like the whole world has gone crazy, and you’re the only one who refuses to swallow the crazy pills. It’s an aggravating feeling, and it lies at the heart of my new novel For Whom the Sun Sings.

It’s dedicated “To everyone who has ever felt alone in knowing the truth,” but the book is not an allegory. It doesn’t hint at political points or try to convince you of anything. It’s a catharsis, vented by way of a story that will hopefully have you putting off your to-do list so you can finish the book. (A lot of the advance readers have read it in just one day, which makes me feel good, as the author.)
The main character, Andrius, is the ultimate expression of that frustrated feeling of something being so clear to you, but you lack the ability to explain to, cajole, or convince anyone. Writing it felt like healing, for that reason, and I hope it’s refreshing to you as well.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate his tour, W.A. is giving away the grand prize of an autographed copy of the book!!

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

Monday, March 30, 2020

Hope in Mountain River


This epic journey is not at all what she expected.

Joel Vargas can’t believe he’s lost his older brother in the wilds of the Rocky Mountains after surviving their harrowing voyage across the Atlantic. And he can’t shake the feeling that Adam—his only living relative—is in dire trouble. No matter what the cost, he and his band of friends won’t stop until Adam is found. He doesn’t have time to contend with the two Indian women who seem to be shadowing his every move.

After the devastating loss of her daughter and husband to a sickness that swept through their Nez Perce camp, Elan is desperate to find an escape from her grief. As she and her friend journey through the mountains toward the great river, a band of white men is the last thing she expects to find, especially as winter blows in full force.

When the dangers increase, accomplishing Joel’s mission becomes the only hope for all their survival. If the elements don’t consume them, Elan has a feeling life will never be the same for any of them.

From a USA Today bestselling author comes another epic journey through breathless landscapes and intense adventure.

My thoughts: Hope in Mountain River continues some of the story that was started in the first book, Freedom in the Mountain Wind. Joel has been worried about his brother for some time now, a concern that lead him to start searching for Adam in the last places he knew his brother had visited. When that search puts he and Elan in the same dangerous situation, on the mountain in the Winter time, the small group has to work together to survive.
This is another wonderful story by Misty that really brings history to life! I appreciate all the research she puts into her stories, since it really shines through. This is an excellent story to pick up!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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About the Author:
Misty M. Beller is a USA Today bestselling author of romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and children now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.



More from Misty
I’ve always been a horse lover, and was blessed to grow up on a farm. My brother and I each had ponies of our own and rode hours each day. When we were old enough to graduate to full-size horses, we met neighbors who also had horses and loved to ride together. The two mares they rode had a mottled black and white spotted look, which I knew to be part of the Appaloosa breed. Through hears of riding together, I developed a deep appreciation for those two Appaloosa horses, as well as respect for the entire breed! Those two mares proved they could outrun and outlast any of the other horses in our riding group.

I’ve long wanted to include Appaloosas in one of my stories, especially since the breed was said to have begun in the Nez Perce tribe who lived just west of the Rocky Mountains. I’m so excited for you to meet Elan, the heroine in Hope in the Mountain River!

Elan and her friend are traveling through the Rockies on their Appaloosa horses, animals who can ride faster and longer than all the other horses in their group—even through the treacherous terrain of the Rocky Mountains!

I pray you love this story as much as I loved writing it. Enjoy a glimpse of the famous Appaloosa horse!


For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the 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 here to enter.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Draw Me to Your Side


Warships in the harbor explode with battle cries for freedom in the hearts of Charles Town’s Patriots.

Charles Town, South Carolina, 1776—With the British war ships threatening his family and livelihood, Louis Lestarjette commits to aid Francis Marion, Christopher Gadsden, Silas Deane and other fiery Patriots with secret correspondences in code and in French. Although not convinced that the colonies can succeed in separation from Britain, he abides by his word—available with funds, his time, and if necessary, even his life.

Louis’ potential volatile role leaves Elizabeth Lestarjette uncertain of the future. Add to that her impending confinement, the secret missions her friends embark on, and the ever-encroaching danger into her domestic world, and the cost of independence grows steeper with each passing day. How will her family survive the coming turbulence? How will she survive not being an active part of it? One thing is certain, she must draw to God’s side or lose heart altogether.

Draw Me to Your Side… a prayer whispered against the coming destruction.

My thoughts: Marguerite does a fantastic job of bringing both her characters and the time period to life with this series! I feel like it is easy for me to get caught up in the romance of different time periods without really seeing how potentially scary or hard it would of been to live during a war like the Revolutionary war. I appreciated how Marguerite shows how one woman deals with the secrets and threat of destruction during war time. This is a wonderful story to pick up and enjoy! I highly recommend reading the whole series.
I received this book through Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:
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About the Author:
Marguerite Martin Gray enjoys history especially when combined with fiction. An avid traveler and reader, she teaches Spanish and French and has degrees in Spanish, French, and Journalism from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. She received her MA in English from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. Presently, she lives in north Louisiana with her husband and rescue cats.



More from Marguerite
I have always loved history, probably because my father took me to every historical site he could find on our travels. As I listened to him tell the story of our ancestors to a group of tourists at our Antebellum home, I suddenly realized that he was weaving tales about my own blood line. Very soon after that I flew to Charleston, South Carolina and began my research. From that first of many trips, my Revolutionary Faith Series arrived.

Draw Me to Your Side is Book Four of the series. The titles play a very significant role in the series, each having a dual meaning. The human element is obvious. Although the series is more historical than romance, the titles offer a glimpse into a potential romance. The other element is spiritual. God is the one who weaves his love and hope into their lives.

If you love book titles as I do, as you read this series, see if you can determine the dual meanings of Hold Me Close, Surround Me, Bring Me Near, and now Draw Me to Your Side.

Happy Reading!

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Marguerite is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon Card and a copy of the eBook!!

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



Secrets of the Happy Soul


How do some people do it? They rise above the circumstances and distractions of life and remain consistently happy. Even in tough times they have a quiet sense of peace about them. Examining the Bible and her own life, Katie Orr has discovered that deep happiness and satisfaction are only possible when we are rooted in God and pursuing his good and specific purpose for each of us.

Secrets of the Happy Soul is your invitation into a deeper, more fruitful relationship with God and his Word. As Katie walks you through key teachings from the book of Psalms, you will recognize how the world's definition of happiness pales compared to the daily delights God has in store for you. Draw closer to him, and your soul will go from lonely to connected, from overwhelmed to level and led, from aimless to commissioned and unique. God doesn't promise a storm-free life, but he is the anchor every happy soul needs.

My thoughts: This book is such a beautiful reminder (or multiple reminders, since there is more than just one) on what we are made for. I loved Katie's insight and appreciated the "secrets" she shared for having a happy soul. I particularly love that each part has a soul searching section where the reader is asked to evaluate how they are on that particular subject. I especially appreciated her sharing about losing her brother, with having dealt with grief after losing my sister in law. I also loved reading about how she and her husband got together.
This is an excellent book to pick up!
I received this book from Bethany House. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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Managing Worry and Anxiety


Scripture says "be anxious for nothing," yet most of us find ourselves increasingly worried and anxious--about our families, our jobs, our finances, our security, and so much more. We're even worried about our level of anxiety!

Integrating both the psychological and spiritual aspects of anxiety, therapist Jean Holthaus offers this research-driven and faith-informed approach to understanding why we experience anxiety and shows us how to effectively manage it by developing three essential skills:

- living in the present moment
- suspending judgment
- believing yourself to be competent and equipped by God

Our world is never going to be a completely safe and understandable place. But with Holthaus's help, our hearts and minds can experience greater and lasting peace.

My thoughts: Oh my goodness, this book is perfect for what a lot of us might be experiencing with the pandemic and how uncertain the world is around us! I really appreciated the information in this book. Jean does an excellent job of breaking down a lot of the causes for anxiety and worry, whether it be hereditary or circumstantial. I appreciated the suggestions she gives to helping ease some of the anxiety and worry. I also love that she has a Biblical approach.
I received this book from Revell. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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With These Words


Every couple knows they need to talk with each other. Every couple knows they need to pay attention to how they can communicate better.

This practical marriage resource by Christian pastor and author Rob Flood not only explores why couples should grow in communication, but it addresses the how of communication.

With These Words offers in-depth, theologically rich tools that will also help flourish relationships outside of your marriage your relationship with your kids, your friendships, and your coworkers.

In this Christian Scripture-based marriage book, you will learn that God is for you and on your side as you press toward helpful, biblical communication based on Christian values. In the face of many emotions and obstacles, there is a clear purpose and a clear method for words.

But in the midst of this shift toward communication and biblical change, Flood shares how you can retain your unique personality, remaining as God made you while honoring him with your words.

My thoughts: While this book would of been excellent to go through when we did pre-marital counseling many years ago, it was also extremely helpful and insightful to go through after having almost a decade of marriage under our belts. I liked how this book goes over some of the more obvious ways we need to communicate to the little things that we may not think about. I love that this book not only suggests, but also gives practical tools for couples to use. This is an excellent book from couples in all walks and stages!
I received this book from New Growth Press. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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Thriving in Love and Money


Over 90 percent of couples experience some level of tension around money. In fact, money issues are the number one stressor in relationships. So many books try to fix the surface problems, such as how to budget and what to prioritize when it comes to finances, but the issues go much deeper than just a simple spreadsheet.

How do men and women view money differently? What do most couples fight about? How can they get on the same page? What questions should men/women ask their significant others before marriage? There are emotional and spiritual components to finances that most couples ignore. How can you agree on a budget if you disagree with each other on the basic purpose of money?

Thriving in Love and Money is based on original research Shaunti and Jeff Feldhahn have conducted to get to the heart of these issues. And just as they did with their bestselling books For Women Only and For Men Only, they will use this research to provide the answers and insights you need to break the tension and provide the unity you're looking for. Let this book deepen your understanding of each other, leading to clear communication, peace as a couple, and better financial decision-making.
Also available: video curriculum and workbook.

My thoughts: As with the other books that I have read by the Feldhahns, I love that they packed this book with information, statistics, and true stories that were shared when they put together their research.
Most of us have heard that money can be a sticking point for couples and their marriage. The Feldhahns have taken the time to break that down and show why that is. I love that they point out our responses and what that says about us. Over all, my husband and I are on the same page when it comes to money, but this was still a helpful book, since I like to think purchases through and shop around, where as he will just buy something if he needs it when he sees it. This is an excellent book for both married and single people alike.
I received this book from Bethany House. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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Saturday, March 28, 2020

Joy Espress


Nearly a year has passed since Scott and Bailey’s Christmas wedding. Now they are expecting joy in the form of twins!

The day arrives for the opening of Barkley House, a missionary retreat provided by Bailey’s inheritance, but an unspeakable evil descends upon Bailey as she awaits her ride to the opening ceremony. Scott can’t find her.

Shocking revelations accompany Bailey’s ordeal. Will she ever find joy again

My thoughts: This is the third book in the series and we come into the story after Bailey and Scott have been married for a year and are eagerly awaiting the birth of their babies. Both Bailey and Scott face difficult situations with looking evil in the face and struggling to overcome it. I like that the story is in first person, so we get the story from both Bailey and Scott's view points. This story is excellent!
With this being the third book, I highly recommend reading the series in order to fully appreciate this one.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

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About the Author:
Jody Bailey Day writes inspirational fiction, poetry, Bible studies, and articles from her home in West Texas. She is a member of Faithwriters.com, American Christian Fiction Writers, and is the president of Critique Café, West Texas area writers group. She mentors young writers, and is a musician and music teacher. She and her husband love silent and black and white movies, and the chaos that comes with fifteen grandchildren. She crochets blankets for her ministry called Wrapped in Prayer Blanket ministry. Jody considers herself a professional nerd, and loves every minute of it.



More from Jody
I’m so excited about the release of Joy Express. It’s the culmination of a series that began in my heart on the way home from the first writer’s conference I ever attended. The East Texas Writer’s Conference was held at my alma mater, East Texas Baptist College, which is now University. I was incredibly inspired, and on I20 toward Dallas I saw a sign that said Washout Express, Exit 477. Turns out that was giant truck wash. My thought was, “What would it be like to be totally washed out, washed up, and at the end of your rope?” I’d been there and was on the other side, but I wanted to write a story about the process. Bailey Brown was born. Joy Express is Book 3 in the series and follows Bailey and Scott through a series of tremendous obstacles, and how their faith and family got them to the other side. It’s not tied up with a nice little bow, life is rarely like that, but it does come to a redemptive pause in their story. I hope you’ll pick it up and read the message of faith. You can come back from anything.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Jody is giving away the grand prize of a print copy of Joy Express!!

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

Thursday, March 26, 2020

A People Chosen


Is God finished with the Jewish people? Understanding Israel according to the Bible and not the media, political views, or personal opinion sheds incredible light on why Israel and the Jewish people exist today. God is not finished with the tiny nation and has a great purpose and plan for Israel that will impact the world. A People Chosen: God’s Purpose and Plan for Israel and the Nations is a self-guided eight-lesson Bible study. You will learn about the creation of Israel in Genesis, God’s promises to Israel and the nations, Israel’s scattering and current regathering to Israel, the return of King Jesus to rule and reign from Jerusalem, and why Israel is pivotal in God’s plan of redemption. It is a love story of faithfulness, mercy, and justice. It is the story of a people chosen by God to be a conduit for God’s blessings to all mankind. It is a weighty call, and it has not come without a price.

My thoughts: This Bible study is awesome! I love how it really makes one pull out their Bible and dive into what the Scriptures say about Israel and why it is so important. I did this study on my own, though it would of been fun to bounce the thoughts off of others! The book is well written and easy to get through for a personal study or with a group. While it goes through a lot of the prophesies on Israel (which can be daunting!) it does so in a way that is easier to understand. I highly recommend picking this up!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Karen earned a master’s in biblical studies from Western Seminary. She is an adjunct writing instructor with Moody Bible Institute, a copy editor for Faithlife Corporation, and owner of East Gate Editing. Her passion is taking study groups to the land of Israel, which she says brings the Bible from “black and white to technicolor.”



More from Karen
There is something peculiar about the Jews. They are one of the few ancient people groups that has endured into modern times, and their religion—Judaism—is one of the world’s oldest.



The Jewish people have been miraculously regathered together into a thriving nation after being scattered throughout the earth. Hebrew, Israel’s official language, was once a dead speech but has been revived and is now an active, living language with more than five million native speakers.



They have been the most persecuted people in history and as such their existence baffles historians and theologians alike. There is no logical rationale for the Jews’ existence. Considering the Holocaust alone, the Jewish people should not have survived. And yet, they do.

In fact, they have flourished and been a blessing to the world.



The narrative of the Bible is centered on this unique nation of individuals established by God thousands of years ago in ancient Mesopotamia. From Abraham to King David to Jesus, the story of the Bible is knit together with a common thread: the Jewish people. It is a love story of faithfulness, mercy, and justice. It is the story of a people chosen by God to be a conduit for God’s blessings to humanity. It is a weighty call, and it has not come without a price.



Yet, many people, even Christians, don’t give this a second thought.



About twelve years ago, God stirred my heart toward this tiny nation, and I subsequently spent years studying the history of the Jewish people and God’s purpose and plan for them according to Scripture. And it rocked my theological world. I was in the middle of seminary, and no one (outside of one professor, who is still my favorite) talked about Israel. And though there were books on the topic, I could not find one Bible study.



When I talk to people about Israel and its importance in Scripture and thus modern-day world events, there seems to be a disconnect—a lack of understanding as to why anyone would bring up the topic. Why should anyone care? What is so significant about Israel?

I wrote this Bible study to answer these questions. It’s a cross between a book and a Bible study and is designed to take participants by the hand and help them understand why God cares so deeply about this peculiar nation. It’s a culmination of many trips to the land and years of personal study—and I’m still learning. Heavy on Scripture, full of beautiful images from around Israel, and focused on Christ, the study will turn the black and white pages of your Bible to technicolor.



I hope that those who do the study will begin to see Israel as a beautiful example of God’s faithfulness to his Word.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Karen is giving away the grand prize package of an Israel-themed basket: 6 copies of my book/Bible study A People Chosen, the movie The Hope on the rebirth of Israel in 1948, the book Your People Will Be My People, and a $25 gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! https://promosimple.com/ps/f737/a-people-chosen-celebration-tour-giveaway.

Vengeance is Mine Saith Mi'Lord


A SISTER FOR A SISTER

Forced into a peer’s realm. Devastated by the death of his beloved sister. With vengeance burning a hole in his heart, will a distraught brother see the damage he’s causing in time to prevent the worst mistake of his life?

Kidnapped for a crime she didn’t commit. Ostracized from society. Can a broken debutante find the peace she craves at Haven House, or must she face her monsters over a ballroom—again?

Captain Nick Rutherford vows revenge against the man who murdered his sister. When the coward escapes, Nick discovers a way to flush him out. Never mind that what he proposes goes against everything he believes in.

Lady Piper Connor faces society’s whispers with her head high. When Captain Rutherford, the new Marquess of Blackwell, forces her to spend the night in his townhouse, she wants to hide in shame—for a moment. Is it wrong to feel relief when one is cast out of society?

Squaring her shoulders, she steps into the morning wearing the same clothes she’d worn to a ball the previous evening. Let them stare.

Join these two hurting people as they walk through overwhelming obstacles to find forgiveness and each other.

God loves her unconditionally, and that is enough. If only a certain marquess didn’t plague her thoughts.

My thoughts: This book is better read with the series and in order, so you better understand Haven House and how it plays into the story. The characters are interesting and unique, so you will want to read the whole series!
I enjoyed getting to know Piper, with her grit and grace. I also thought that Nick was an interesting character, with his past driving his future. This is an excellent story!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Tammy Kirby holds an associate degree in Registered Nursing, a cosmetology license, and the title of author. When she’s not helping heal the sick, or dabbling in color, you can find her at her computer, giving life to the characters clamoring inside her head to be set free.

In 2018 she released her debut novel, His Grace Forgiven, the first book in the Victorian Inspirational Romance series, Haven House. She developed a love for reading at a young age. Beauty and the Beast is her favorite fairytale, and I Love Lucy her favorite tv show from childhood. That being said, you’ll always find one of her characters having some of the same characteristics in Tammy’s works.

She uses her writing to show God’s love and forgiveness through characters from hundreds of years in the past, who face the same problems people face today. Taking broken heroes and heroines and showing them this truth is her mission.

Tammy lives with her husband, Roger in Northeast Louisiana, where she spends her free time doting on grandchildren, reading, crocheting, sewing and, of course, writing about how the Lord can take any sin, no matter how bad and turn it into a blessing to glorify Him. Her desire is for her writing to speak to her readers in a way that draws them closer to the One who loves them above all.



More from Tammy
When God placed the Haven House series on my heart and instructed me to put them on paper, I asked Him why me? He said because you’re not afraid to write what I tell you even if it’s uncomfortable. This entire series deals with forgiveness in some form or another. Can you forgive the unforgivable? What happens if you can’t?

As an avid reader, my favorite books are those I can apply to real life—my life. I will read almost any genre, but historical romance is my preference. My characters are flawed, even the Christian ones. In my writing I use them to show the world that God can fix anything we get ourselves into—if we ask.

Vengeance is Mine saith Mi’Lord is the third book in a series of five. One day I was sitting at my kitchen table working on the second book, when a handsome ship’s captain waltzed across the room. I knew then, Captain Rutherford would have his own story.

Because of hurtful circumstances, my hero, Nick acts completely out of character. Even though he doesn’t like himself for it, he can’t seem to stop the emotional carriage wreck he’s causing himself at the expense of my heroine, Piper. Throw in a cat named Satan whose alter-ego is Angel (according to my heroine), a cabin boy with a secret, a murder coverup, and you have all the makings for a fulfilling read.

I hope you enjoy Nick and Piper’s story. I certainly enjoyed bringing them to life for you.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Tammy is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card & two signed books, His Grace Forgiven and Joy to the Earl!!

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

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Emberhawk


The elementals have decided they're gods, and humans are nothing but fuel for their fire.

A starving trapper.

Merciless drought withers Kira's ranch, leaving her family hungry—and desperate enough to cross the border into the forbidden forest to trap wild game.

But the forest is infested with tree-scorpions and giant cats that wield elemental invisibility, and they're hungry, too. When Kira mistakes one elemental creature for another, she ends up with the last thing she wants in her trap: an enemy soldier.

An invisible spy.

Ryon can't afford to be a prisoner of war. If the Malaano Empire extracts his secrets, the rumors of war will be confirmed—and the tribes stand little chance against the Empire unless they can put aside generations of bad blood for the sake of a Tribal Alliance.

When Ryon's escape leaves Kira injured and her livelihood in flames, Ryon must choose between aiding her… or returning to his chieftess with vital information. But can he survive the trek when an elemental pursues him for his rejected heritage?

A sacrificial princess.

Imperial Princess Vylia is given a powerful ancient stone as her wavesinger trials approach. But is the stone's whispering voice from the water goddess, or a masquerading elemental the creator god imprisoned millennia ago?

When Vylia's diplomatic mission to the tribal lands erupts in fiery revenge, she, Kira, and Ryon must work together to survive—or become pawns in the battle of the gods.

My thoughts: This book is amazing! I was sucked into the story from the get go, with Kira and her family striving to make ends meet living so close to the border. When her life converges with Ryon's, things will never be the same. I love that this story was told from multiple points of view. The characters are phenomenal and I love the world building that Jamie has done with this story. I highly recommend picking it up if you enjoy unique fantasy that leaves you eagerly awaiting the next book!
I received this book from Just Read tours. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

My Heart Ever His


As we search for meaning in our world of shallow online relationships and glamorized selfies, many are returning to traditional and liturgical churches. The repeated words, benedictions, and historic hymns connect us to saints who have gone before, giving us a sense of belonging, richness, and transcendence. Written prayers, once cast off as archaic, are now welcomed as guides to tune our hearts to the heart of God.

In My Heart, Ever His Barbara Rainey shares 40 prayers for women. They can meditate on one prayer throughout the week or read a prayer a day for 40 days as a way to express the longing of our hearts to our Father who loves us even as he sees who we truly are. Like the psalms of David, these prayers are honest, sometimes raw. Barbara uses these transparent expressions of common experiences to encourage us to surrender to Christ and help us see God as he is, not as we assume him to be.

My Heart, Ever His provides a stepping-stone to help you become more transparent with God and discover his welcoming embrace.

My thoughts: This book couldn't of been more aptly timed, arriving in such uncertain, changing times. I enjoyed this book of prayers that brought peace to my soul. I love that these prayers mirror the Psalms, in my opinion. They are so pretty and soothing to read! This is an excellent book to pick up.
I received this book from Bethany House. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

The Runaway Bride


Wealthy Arabella Lawrence flees to British Columbia on a bride ship still wearing the scars of past mistakes. One of the few single women in the boomtown, she immediately has suitors, but she is determined not to find herself trapped again by a poor choice.

Vying for her hand are two very different men. Lieutenant Richard Drummond is a gentleman in the Navy and is held in high esteem. Peter Kelly is the town's baker and has worked hard to build a thriving business. He and Drummond not only compete for Arabella's affections, but clash over their views of how the natives should be treated in the midst of a smallpox outbreak.

As Arabella begins to overcome her fears, she discovers someone in dire need--a starving girl abandoned by her tribe. Intent on helping the girl, Arabella leans on Peter's advice and guidance. Will she have the wisdom to make the right decision or will seeking what's right cost both her and Peter everything?

My thoughts: The historical aspect of this story was incredible! I enjoyed getting to know Arabella as she sets out on an adventure on a bride ship. I had heard of mail order brides, but bride ships were slightly different, since you didn't have the advantage of having written letters to a prospective groom ahead of time. I can imagine that it took great courage (or desperation) to do something like that! This is an excellent story of life on the frontier and finding love despite the odds.
I received this book from Bethany House. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

The Blue Cloak


Evil Incarnate Leaves a Trail of Destruction across the Frontier

Book 5 in the True Colors series—Fiction Based on Strange-But True History

Rachel Taylor lives a rather mundane existence in 1797 at the way station her family runs along the Wilderness Road in Tennessee. She attends her friend Sally Rice’s wedding only to watch the marriage dissolve into horror has the groom, Wiley Harpe, and his cousin Micajah become murderers on the run, who drag their families along. Declaring a “war on all humanity,” the Harpes won’t be stopped, and Ben Langford is on their trail to see if his own cousin was one of their latest victims.

How many will die before peace can return to the frontier?

My thoughts: Wow. This book was hard to put down, since it was so fascinating. I didn't know anything about Wiley and Micajah before picking this book up. They really are evil incarnate as they left a path of destruction in their wake through the post Revolutionary war frontier. I thought that the author did a good job of showing how evil they are without dwelling on it, though the book still gives me the willies, since they were pretty awful. I did like that the story is balanced a bit with Rachel Taylor trying to help her friend out and finding love along the way.
This who series is interesting, since it brings to light some crazy history!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Transplanted to North Dakota after more than two decades in Charleston, South Carolina, Shannon McNear loves losing herself in local history. She’s a military wife, mom of eight, mother-in-law of three, grammie of two, and a member of ACFW and RWA. Her first novella, Defending Truth in A Pioneer Christmas Collection, was a 2014 RITA® finalist. When she’s not sewing, researching, or leaking story from her fingertips, she enjoys being outdoors, basking in the beauty of the northern prairies. Connect with her at www.shannonmcnear.com, or on Facebook and Goodreads.



More from Shannon
How dark is too dark for a Christian to write?

That was the question I wrestled with when deciding whether or not to take on the story of the Harpes. The histories in Scripture itself aren’t rated G, but writing fiction requires a level of detail and depth of emotion I wasn’t sure would be wise, or helpful, to explore in this case. But as I prayed and sought the counsel of those whose discernment I trust, the answer came back, overwhelmingly …

Is God stronger than the darkness, or not?

Well, of course He is. And nothing in human history has ever escaped His notice, or taken Him by surprise.

So, was there something redeeming to be found in the tale of the Harpes?

For the first few weeks of research, I walked around in a state of shock at the horror of the historical accounts, but details surfaced that helped me shape my fictional characters Rachel and Ben. With Rachel working in her family’s trading post near the wild frontier town of Knoxville, Tennessee, and Ben a lawyer who recently passed the bar, the real-life Hugh Lawson White provided a handy connection point between them. Many other details fell together in ways I had not foreseen when I began developing the story. Sally Rice Harpe, however, rose to the forefront. This was more her story than anyone’s, but realizing I couldn’t properly write the book without using her point of view? That was scary. I knew the moments I’d have to visit, some of them in real-time.

Despite the tragedy, however, I could see an overarching story of spiritual warfare. Felt a growing conviction that prayer must have played a vital role in bringing the Harpes’ reign of terror to an end. So it is my hope that against the backdrop of one of the most chilling episodes of our country’s early history, the hand of God shows clearly, and that yes, the reader finds it redemptive.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!To celebrate her tour, Shannon is giving away the grand prize package of a copy of The Blue Cloak and a $25 Amazon gift card!!

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

Balaam's curse


Unfathomable evil grips the ancient homeland of the Children of Israel. When Yahweh, Most High God, led his people out of slavery in Egypt to confront it, they failed miserably and spent the next forty years wandering homeless in the desert. Now they are ready to try again. But before they can cross the Jordan River to enter the Promised Land, the prophet Balaam is summoned from Babylon to stop them. Joining forces with supernatural powers, he unleashes a plot so twisted that the name of Balaam is used as a synonym for seductive evil a thousand years later in the Book of Revelation.

Aided by the ruthlessly ambitious Princess Cozbi, the prophet gathers a coalition of five Midianite kings who will stop at nothing to defeat Israel and prevent a crossing that will change the world. Balaam’s Curse, Book One of The Stones of Gilgal, is an epic telling of the resulting deception, revolt, plague, and war. Familiar biblical characters—Moses, Caleb and Joshua—stride through this tale of mayhem and miracles. But this is the coming-of-age story of the next generation, young people nurtured in a simple wilderness life who suddenly find themselves caught in a vortex of violence and upheaval beyond anything they could have imagined.

My thoughts: If you have always been curious what it would of been like to live in this Old Testament times, then this is a wonderful book to pick up! C. L. Smith does an excellent job of bringing some of the Bible times to life with this well written story that shows just how exciting it was to live back in the time of the Bible. I enjoyed getting to know the characters, with their struggles and how the fictitious characters blended with the story of Moses' time.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
C.L. Smith, retired junior high school English and history teacher, former missionary, and lifetime student of the Bible, has been captivating audiences around the world for years with the timeless thrill of biblical tales. More than twenty years ago while reading the books of Joshua and Judges, Othniel caught her attention and then his future wife, Acsah. They are only mentioned in a few short verses, but there were a lot of possibilities embedded there. They lived through an exciting era peppered with some other fascinating minor characters of the Bible. The more she thought about them, the more it seemed they were begging her to tell their story. Well, Acsah was. Othniel didn’t say much. He’s pretty quiet. But they convinced her that their impressive and important story had been buried too long among the spectacular events of the time of Joshua. It was about time someone told it. The idea for a biblical novel quickly grew into The Stones of Gilgal series. Balaam’s Curse was published in 2016, A River to Cross in 2017, and Trouble in the Ruins in September, 2019.



More from C.L. Smith
The light of God’s love dispels the darkness obscuring the era of Joshua and the violent conquest of Canaan. Be inspired by this epic series of biblical novels illuminating the murky mists of ancient time with truth applicable to modern life.



Balaam’s Curse

The first book of the series plunges the reader into a nightmarish tale of terror instigated by an evil prophet from Babylonia. If you think you remember the story of Balaam and his talking donkey from Sunday School, think again. When God puts words of blessing in the prophet’s mouth, thwarting his attempt to curse Israel, Balaam joins forces with supernatural powers in a scheme so twisted that his name is used as a synonym for seductive evil a thousand years later in the Book of Revelation.



Forming a coalition with five Midianite kings and the ruthlessly ambitious Princess Cozbi, the evil prophet unleashes a deadly plot against the twelve tribes of Israel. He will stop at nothing to prevent them from crossing into the Promised land to claim their inheritance. This is a gripping tale of the seduction, revolt, plague, and war that traps the Children of Israel in the Valley of Acacias east of the Jordan for months. Well-known Biblical heroes—Moses, Caleb and Joshua—stride through its pages, but the story unfolds primarily through the eyes of the next generation, young people born and nurtured in the simple wilderness life of the forty-year Wanderings. Suddenly, on the brink of their new life in the Promised Land, they find themselves in a life or death struggle that tests their strength and batters their faith before they’ve even crossed the river.



The Story Behind the Story

This series of biblical novels began with a new interest in Othniel, the first of the biblical hero-judges. His love story with Acsah and his heroic adventures are summarized in only a few words of scripture, but I saw a lot of possibilities embedded in those brief verses. Digging deeper, I realized that Othniel and Acsah came of age during the turbulent era of Joshua along with a handful of other fascinating minor biblical characters. The more I thought about Othniel, Acsah, and friends, the more I was convinced that their impressive and important story had been buried too long among the spectacular events of the time of Joshua and it was about time someone told it. The result is the six-part Stones of Gilgal saga showing how the obstacles overcome in their youth shape each character for their ultimate roles in the story of the settlement of Canaan. The series ends with Othniel rising to save Israel from an oppressive enemy as the first and most noble of the hero-judges.



The Dark Side

The Stones of Gilgal saga includes several “tales of terror,” dark episodes standing in juxtaposition to some of the Bible’s most dazzling miracles. I see these stories as dark and light puzzle pieces, making sense only when viewed within the framework of the Great Cosmic War. Whether read as ancient history or truth-teaching myth, these incidents are chapters in the epic story of the entire Bible, a good God working to save humanity from the forces of evil.



The Characters

Six of my characters are minor but real characters found in scripture who lived during the era of Joshua, experiencing the transition from the Wilderness Wanderings to the Promised Land. They all crossed the Jordan, witnessed the fall of Jericho and the sun standing still at a word from Joshua—life-changing events that prepared them for leadership roles in the book of Judges.



Othniel, who becomes the first hero-Judge of Israel
Acsah, only daughter of the heroic Caleb
Phinehas, grandson of Aaron, future high priest
Jonathan, grandson of Moses whose story appears in Judges 17-18
Salmon, prince of the tribe of Judah, who appears only in genealogies as the husband of Rahab
Rahab, the courageous Canaanite harlot not only saved by faith but honored with a place in the lineage of King David and Jesus Christ.
Plus Abihail, fictionalized daughter-in-law of the biblical Achan

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, C.L. is giving away the 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 here to enter.

Out of the Embers


Ten years after her parents were killed, Evelyn Radcliffe is once more homeless. The orphanage that was her refuge and later her workplace has burned to the ground, and only she and a young orphan girl have escaped. Convinced this must be related to her parents' murders, Evelyn flees with the girl to Mesquite Springs in the Texas Hill Country and finds refuge in the home of Wyatt Clark, a talented horse rancher whose plans don't include a family of his own.

At first, Evelyn is a distraction. But when it becomes clear that trouble has followed her to Mesquite Springs, she becomes a full-blown disruption. Can Wyatt keep her safe from the man who wants her dead? And will his own plans become collateral damage?

Suspenseful and sweetly romantic, Out of the Embers is the first in a new series that invites you to the Texas Hill Country in the 1850s, when the West was wild, the men were noble, and the women were strong.

My thoughts: Two orphans in the Wild West left to make a place for themselves in a world that seems to be out to get them. When both Evelyn and Polly become homeless due to the orphanage they lived in burning to the ground in a sinister fashion, they set out to hide their tracks and make a life in the town of Mesquite Springs.
I liked the suspense of this story, as well as getting introduced to the town of Mesquite Springs. Readers will enjoy this historical fiction and eagerly anticipate the next story!
I received this book from Revell. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Walking with Jesus


When God spoke to Troy Waugh saying, “I want you to walk the Natchez Trace,” he obeyed.

Never mind that he wasn’t young anymore—he would be seventy at the completion of the 444 mile walk. Never mind that the thirty-five-day walk would be far above his physical capabilities and experience. Never mind that this was Mississippi—in the summer.

Taking the challenge, Waugh uses the time to slow down and reflect on his life—his upbringing, his relationships, his struggles with workaholism—and to raise awareness for a homeless ministry. More than a travelogue, this is a journey into the soul of a man learning to walk with the Lord daily. His reflections will inspire others to reach for and accomplish their own difficult goals.

I believe my walk on the Natchez Trace was God’s method of shaking me loose from the regrets of my past and firming up my spiritual belief system so I could walk into the future closer to Jesus.

My thoughts: Wow, what a journey this book takes readers on! I can't imagine walking 444 miles "alone" like Troy did, though the blessings that come from walking with Jesus and listening for His still small voice are incredible. I really appreciated how open and honest the author is about what he discovered about himself and was reminded of about Jesus. This is an excellent book to pick up and read.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Troy Waugh is a CPA with an MBA from the University of Southern California. A mentor with Mission Development International, he helps leaders of Christian nonprofits achieve God’s vision in their lives and their organizations. The retired founder, former president, and CEO of The Rainmaker Academy, a training program for CPAs, is also the author of several books, and he lives with his wife, Sheryl, in Leiper’s Fork, Tennessee.



More from Troy
Please join me on a spiritual journey along the Natchez Trace Parkway from Natchez, Mississippi, to Nashville, Tennessee. This book relates a journey of spiritual renewal and rediscovery. While it does describe what I encountered on this historic parkway, this is not a hiking or nature book. It is about my walk with Jesus and how He has loved me even during the times I may have strayed from Him.

In 2014 I experienced a deepening of my relationship with Jesus like no other. This book is about that cleansing and invigorating experience. My prayer is that you, too, will feel God’s love for you and you will recommit yourself to loving Jesus.

These thirty-one chapters are based upon notes from the daily journal I kept throughout the hike. Each of the days is unique, and each day God revealed Himself to me in a different way.

I trust your spirit will be renewed as I share some of my experiences of angels’ visits, hearing the audible voice of God, the move of the Holy Spirit, a shocking suicide, the miracle of a change in the climate, and the renewed life that comes from turning your life over to God.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate his tour, Troy is giving away the grand prize of a signed copy of Walking with Jesus!!

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

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Encountering God's Heart for You


God put the Bible together for you, and he wants you to understand and know him better. But sometimes you can get lost in the details and miss the big picture. The Bible is more than just a collection of wisdom, instructions, and history. It’s one unified story of the incredible love of God!

Encountering God’s Heart for You takes you on a daily journey through the full narrative of Scripture in a year. And in the process, it will draw you nearer to God as you discover his love and compassion. It won’t cover every verse, or even every chapter, in the Bible, but by the time you’re through, you’ll have a strong grasp of what the Bible is all about.

Reading Scripture isn’t just a way to collect information or check something off a to-do list. Let this book bring you into God’s presence to better understand the Bible’s story of love, sacrifice, and redemption as he draws you to himself.

My thoughts: I love starting the year off with some new devotionals! This devotional is a little different from the other ones that I picked up this year, since you go through the Bible chronologically. I loved the thought provoking questions that each of the pages presents, giving the reader a chance to reflect on how God is present in our lives and our response to Him. I personally have really enjoyed this devotional!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review and is in no way influenced by receiving a complimentary copy.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Diane Stortz is a multipublished author who writes to make God’s wonders known to the next generation. Diane’s books for women, A Woman’s Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year and Encountering God’s Heart for You, both from Bethany House, encourage women to get to know God through His Word, the Bible. Her children’s releases include the best-selling Say & Pray Bible and I AM: 40 Reasons to Trust God, both from Tommy Nelson. Diane and her husband have two married daughters and five grandchildren—all boys! Visit her at www.DianeStortz.com.





More from Diane
Twenty years ago, I was invited to join a women’s Bible study group planning to read through the Bible in a year to get to know God.

Although I’d been a Christian for many years and had read many parts of the Bible and used the Bible in my work as an editor, I had never actually read the entire Bible.

I joined the group. We read about three chapters a day and met weekly on Monday nights to discuss what we’d read.

I’ve repeated that experience in various forms most years since then, and it has changed my life in so many ways. (Getting to know God does that, right?)

I’m convinced that one of the most loving things we can do for someone else is to invite and encourage her to become a lifelong reader of the Word, and to read it together.

That’s how I view my new devotional, Encountering God’s Heart for You. It’s an invitation to every woman to pick up her Bible, read along with me, and look together for all the ways God teaches us about himself on every page.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Diane is giving away the grand prize package of a journal, a set of Scripture cards, and a set of gel pens!!

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

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Where the Stars Meet the Sea





Juliet Graham fervently counts the days until her twenty-first birthday, when she can claim the inheritance that will grant her the freedom she has always craved and the guardianship of her younger brother. Until then, she is trapped under her aunt Agnes’s domineering will. When forced to accompany the family to a house party at Shaldorn Castle, Juliet’s only objective is to keep to herself. That is, until a chance encounter with a boorish stranger stirs up an unexpected whirlwind of emotions in her. Thrown off-balance, Juliet does the unthinkable: loses her temper and insults the man—who turns out to be her unwilling host, the Duke of Halstead. Fully expecting to be sent away, Juliet is surprised when the brusque and callous duke instead takes an interest in her.

Drawn to the duke in unguarded moments, Juliet finds herself more and more intrigued by the man who shuns Society’s rules as completely as she does, and over the next few weeks, their unlikely friendship deepens into a connection neither expected.

But even as Juliet comes to recognize her true feelings, her scheming aunt issues an ultimatum that threatens the future she was just beginning to hope for. Juliet must choose: either break the promise she made to herself years ago, or lose the man who has captured her heart and soul.

My thoughts: This story is every bit as gorgeous inside the cover as it is on the outside! I fell in love with Juliet and how unconventional she is, trying to take control of her life and her inheritance for the sake of her brother. When a trip to Shaldorn Castle throws her into the acquaintance of a brooding Duke, her life is forever changed.
I loved this story so much! The dialog is spot on and I enjoyed how the story had so many obstacles to be overcome. I highly recommend picking up this wonderful story!
I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. This is my honest review.

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