Thursday, April 30, 2020

The Wait Will Not Be Wasted


You’ve probably imagined the job, the spouse, the kids—and you knew what age you wanted it all to happen. However, all too often such plans go up in smoke, and you may feel confused and forgotten when reality doesn’t match your expectations. When life doesn’t go like you planned, can you still trust that God knows how to write the best stories? Instead of taking the pen to your own story, author Lauren Walton suggests refocusing on your Creator.

After spending years frustrated because life wasn’t going according to her plans, Lauren decided to give up control. It was then she learned God’s graciousness wasn’t based on getting what she wanted and that God’s perfect plan included an unexpected season. She wrote The Wait Will Not Be Wasted to help other single women during times of unfulfilled hopes. Lauren shares how self-reflection, journaling, and practical experience have led her to find deep fulfillment and a God-given purpose while she waits. It is her hope that her journey will help others see God’s goodness even during the most difficult times.

Though directed at single women, the concepts apply to any woman waiting for God to move in her life.

My thoughts: I so appreciated how open and honest Lauren is about her journey of being single and waiting for God to open the doors for her to get married. This book is raw and honest, since she shares her struggles and even some of her failures. I think that it is an excellent book that will help those who are single with their wait, to know that they are not alone. I know that I would of appreciated this book all the more when I was single!
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:
Lauren Walton is a native Floridian who now calls Nashville home. She loves traveling, dancing, staying active with her church community, and cheering on her Auburn University Tigers. Lauren’s faith has carried her through some tough times, and it is now her life goal to help others see God’s goodness even during the most difficult times.



More from Lauren


All I have ever wanted was to be a wife and a mom. In the life I had always imagined there were no other options. But then college came and went, moving to a new city and finding my first job came and went. And so many other milestones came and went, including my 35th birthday. As the years kept passing, I found myself still waiting. My heart felt confused and forgotten. I didn’t understand why God would give me this desire and then withhold it from me.

About eight years ago a friend wrote a verse in my journal. I loved it at the time but didn’t realize it would become my anthem in the future. She wrote Psalm 94:17, which says, “Unless the Lord had been my help, my soul would soon have settled in silence”. I can’t tell you how many times I almost settled in silence but turns out God had other plans for me.

Many times I started to wonder if God really was the good God I had always thought He was. I grew up in church and had been taught from a young age to believe God was good no matter what. But as the wait got longer and longer He didn’t seem to be very good. At that point, I started questioning so many things as I felt my faith beginning to crack. I was terrified of what I might find if I dug into the pain so I pushed it aside, or at least tried to. I began to believe the lie that having doubts would make me a horrible Christian so I kept silent. I was so afraid to ask the tough questions and was afraid of what those questions might say about me. Ignoring those concerns ended up being a breeding ground for all my doubts, which eventually led me to make decisions I normally would never have made. I lost sight of God’s goodness and found myself solely focusing on what I didn’t have… a husband and a family. This was a season filled with sadness and so much bitterness. I was so over being single and so frustrated with the way my life had turned out. But somewhere in the middle of all that hurt, and despite all my mistakes, God still came for me. He started teaching me all over again who He was as my Father. And how much He loved me.

As I started walking towards healing, I began to ask God the really hard questions my heart couldn’t make sense of, and I believe He started to answer me. So I started to write it all down. I kept a running note in my phone and I always felt like the things God was showing me and encouraging me with were not just for me. If God had me still waiting, there must be a reason and I was determined to figure out what that was. I eventually took a next step and went away for the weekend to write. I found the perfect Airbnb tree house and 7 chapters came spilling out.

At that point it became very clear this book needed to be written and I felt very strongly it needed to be written now… while I am still waiting and not when I am on the other side of my singleness. It’s my hope this will cause other women to lean into what I am saying, or better yet what God has to say. I believe these are His words and not mine anyway.

The Wait will not be Wasted is my “yes” to the Lord and my thank you for how far He has brought me. It’s my whole heart in written form, and the story of my victories and struggles while walking through my singleness. It’s not the pretty or cleaned up version of my story. It was very purposely written that way so we could all take a deep breath and know it’s okay, that it’s hard and it’s okay to make mistakes. I know I’ve made plenty.

I’m praying as women read these words they will discover this life is never going to be void of the hard but there is a very real and very big God who is bigger than anything we go through. I hope together we can begin to see our singleness through a new filter, as we began to shift our attention and see things more from God’s perspective instead of our own. Knowing this doesn’t mean the wait will all of a sudden be easier. But also seeing even through the pain there is a purpose to this season. And God is working all of it together for our good.

He’s always making sure not one minute of our pain is wasted.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Lauren 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.

https://promosimple.com/ps/f8f9/the-wait-will-not-be-wasted-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Beauty for Ashes


Nathan Drummond’s actions at the age of eighteen had devastating consequences. Writing became therapeutic, leading him into a successful career as a mystery writer. With seven novels to his name, Nathan is rapidly becoming a household name.

When family responsibilities force him to return to his home town, he meets Angie Hernandez. Nathan doesn’t count on falling in love, and certainly not with a woman who has the power to shatter his peace.

Being at home pushes him too close to painful memories, and as guilt threatens and panic attacks set in, Nathan begins to write a novel paralleling the tragic event from his youthful folly.

Will the novel be seen as a work of fiction, or will it expose his secret and threaten his future?

My thoughts: This book has such a beautiful message of forgiveness! I loved the characters, with their failures and triumphs. Nathan's past is full of heartache and guilt. When he and Angie begin working together, he doesn't plan on falling in love with the one woman who can bring his guilt that he struggles with on a daily basis to the surface. This is such a wonderfully written story on forgiveness! I look forward to reading more by this author!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Kathleen Neely is the author of The Street Singer, Beauty for Ashes, and The Least of These. She is a former elementary teacher. Following her years in the classroom, she moved into administration, serving as an elementary principal at Eden Christian Academy in Pittsburgh, PA and at Shannon Forest Christian School in Greenville, SC. Kathleen is an alumnus of Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania and Regent University in Virginia.

Among her writing accomplishments, Kathleen won second place in a short story contest through ACFW-VA for her short story “The Missing Piece” and an honorable mention for her story “The Dance”. Both were published in a Christmas anthology. Her novel, The Least of These, was awarded first place in the 2015 Fresh Voices contest through Almost an Author. She has numerous devotions published through Christian Devotions. She continues to speak to students about writing. Kathleen is a member of Association of Christian Fiction Writers.



She resides in Greenville, SC with her husband, two cats, and one dog. She enjoys time with family, visiting her two grandsons, traveling, and reading.



More from Kathleen
I’ve always been an avid reader, but began writing at a period in my life when I didn’t have time to commit. While raising three sons, I also worked full time as a teacher, then later as an elementary principal. That left little time for writing. I’d plug away at my manuscript then neglect it for months. Those months became years. Every now and then, I would pull it out, re-read it, then add a little to it. When retirement approached, I thought of that old, abandoned manuscript. That’s when I began to take writing seriously. I joined a writing group, attended conferences, and met with two other writers weekly to critique and be critiqued. That manuscript is now a published novel.

I truly love writing. I can get lost in my own thoughts when planning a story. Characters become real and take on their own personality, sometimes different than I originally intended. Nathan, the protagonist in Beauty for Ashes, is a novelist. This excerpt is scripted from the book as he attempts to explain his trade with Angie. His explanation describes my approach to writing.

Excerpt: “They’re real people. I have to make myself become them. My mind lives out each scene. What would they feel? How would they react? I’m an actor playing a role, except that I have to play each role, each character. I immerse myself completely, then find words to capture it.”

I hope you’ll visit the pages of Beauty for Ashes and meet Nathan. He loves writing as much as I do, but hides a deadly secret. His past triggers challenges that leave him with debilitating anxiety and panic attacks. Writing has always been a balm for Nathan—until he writes his own story.



For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away the grand prize of a 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.
https://promosimple.com/ps/f8f3/beauty-for-ashes-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, April 27, 2020

The Lost Lieutenant Review and Giveaway!




He's doing what he can to save the Prince Regent's life . . . but can he save his new marriage as well?

Evan Eldridge never meant to be a war hero--he just wanted to fight Napoleon for the future of his country. And he certainly didn't think that saving the life of a peer would mean being made the Earl of Whitelock. But when the life you save is dear to the Prince Regent, things can change in a hurry.

Now Evan has a new title, a manor house in shambles, and a stranger for a bride, all thrust upon him by a grateful ruler. What he doesn't have are all his memories. Traumatized as a result of his wounds and bravery on the battlefield, Evan knows there's something he can't quite remember. It's important, dangerous--and if he doesn't recall it in time, will jeopardize not only his marriage but someone's very life.

Readers who enjoy Julie Klassen, Carolyn Miller, and Kristi Ann Hunter will love diving into this brand-new Regency series filled with suspense, aristocratic struggles, and a firm foundation of faith.

My thoughts: I loved this story so much! Evan and Diana are so real, with their different struggles that they face as they navigate society in the Regency era. The storyline is unique, giving readers a taste of what it would of been like to go from being a "commoner" a member of the peerage. I can imagine that it felt like you were just trading one set of problems for another, since instead of just having to worry about your family, you had to worry about making an estate profitable and provide enough income for all your tenants and servants. Having been to England and Scotland, it was so much fun to read about the house and grounds that Evan inherits with his title. This is a delightful story that has it all, romance, history, and a touch of suspense.
I received this book from I Read with Audra blog tours. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

God's Word to Dream On


Start a Bedtime Bible Story Tradition Tonight!
What better way to spend the last few minutes of the day than snuggled up with your children, pouring God’s love into their hearts? God’s Words to Dream On calms, quiets, and opens hearts to hear faith-building Bible stories and prayers. Over 50 stories—from the Old and New Testaments—create an overview of the Bible with a focus on God’s love, care, protection, trustworthiness, and power.
Each Night, You’ll Enjoy:
* A Bible Story—stories of Gods power and protection
* A Bedtime Blessing—how this story will bless your child’s life
* God’s Words to Dream On—a Bible verse to hide God’s Word in little hearts
* A Sleepy-Time Prayer—a good-night prayer tied to the theme of the story
Dreams are sweeter when we dream of the Lord.

My thoughts: This book is just beautiful! I love the illustrations and the encouraging words that are within, which have made an excellent addition to our night time routine. I love that this book comprises of so many wonderful Bible stories to tell young children and get them acquainted with the stories of the Bible. Is it complete? No. But I do feel like it is a great place to start with little ones. The length and beautiful illustrations are perfect for my children!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:


This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
iane Stortz is a multipublished author who writes to make God’s wonders known to the next generation. Her children’s releases include the best-selling Say & Pray Bible and I AM: 40 Reasons to Trust God, both from Tommy Nelson. 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. Diane and her husband have two married daughters and five grandchildren—all boys! Visit her at www.DianeStortz.com.

More from Diane
A happy bedtime contributes so much to a child’s welfare. Perhaps a warm bath, a story, some cuddles with mom or dad, and a prayer equal a time-tested bedtime routine. These last moments of the day, done right, create a wonderful sense of family security and love for children as they fall asleep.

Bedtime also gives us a wonderful opportunity to help children grow secure in God’s love. I wrote God’s Words to Dream On for just that reason. The stories not only create an overview of the Bible’s big story, but they focus on God’s love and care—the ways He shows us His power and protection and the reasons we can trust Him. Each story includes a simple Bible verse to remember, a simple prayer, and a bedtime blessing for your child.

Young children thrive on routine, and I think a Bible story at bedtime might be one of the best!

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Diane is giving away the grand prize package of a Scripture Lullabies CD, a bottle of Honest Company Truly Calming Bubble Bath, and a bath poof!!

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

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Hope Lies Ahead



Every inch of my body was in pain and my skin was crawling. I couldn’t think straight or even form coherent sentences . . . How did I end up like this? –Geoffrey Banks

Geoff’s situation seemed hopeless: a heroin addict going through a nightmarish detox on the floor of an overpopulated jail cell. He had made a mess of his life.

His parents felt their son slipping away. They loved him so much and felt so powerless. And so they prayed—through the hurt, the questions, the frustrations. And through it all, God walked with them.

Hope Lies Ahead shares Geoff’s prodigal journey and James’s perspective as his father. Each man writes his own story and candidly addresses the spiritual and practical challenges families with prodigals face. As someone who loves a prodigal, you’ll know you are not alone and that there is hope!

My thoughts: This book is such a good one for parents, since it deals with some difficult topics. I can't imagine how hard it would be to watch your child make choices that could end in their self destruction. I really appreciated how open and honest Geoff was about what was going through his head and what choices lead to the path he was on, as well as James' view point of a parent watching his son making choices that hurt him. This is an excellent book for all parents to pick up, but especially those who are praying for their prodigal children.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest reivew.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Authors:
Dr. James Banks is the author of Prayers for Prodigals, Prayers for Your Children, Praying the Prayers of the Bible, Praying Together, and Praying with Jesus. Through books, blog posts, and magazine articles, he regularly encourages people to pray. Dr. Banks has been a pastor and church planter for more than twenty-five years and lives with his wife, Cari, in Durham, North Carolina. They have two adult children.

Geoffrey Banks serves as the high school coordinator at Port City Community Church in Wilmington, North Carolina. He loves reaching students where they are and helping them walk with God. He is an avid surfer and skater. Geoffrey struggled with heroin addiction throughout his teens and early twenties before coming to know Jesus and having his life radically change. Now he is host of the podcast Too Many Christians, which explores beliefs in the pursuit of ultimate truth.

From the Authors:

From James

My son, Geoff, and I chose to tell our story in Hope Lies Ahead because we believe it’s what God would have us do. So many families suffer in silence when their loved ones go down prodigal paths, and we want them to know they are not alone. God truly offers hope when it seems like none can be found.

Geoff and I could only write this book because of God’s kindness to us. Like the father in the parable of the prodigal, “My son was lost and now is found,” and I’m still celebrating. Geoff is so much more than his past sins and mistakes. He is a new creation, made stronger in the broken places by God’s amazing love. Today God uses him to reach people in ways that would not have been possible had he not been down such difficult roads. God wastes nothing—redemption is a precious, priceless thing.

God never gives up on us. He goes to lengths that defy reason to save us and love us back to Himself. Even when our children make choices that break our hearts, God doesn’t abandon them. He loves our prodigals even more than we do.

Jesus is still “a friend of sinners.” No one is beyond God’s reach. When answers to prayer are long in coming, He Himself is the best answer. In the rough and raw places where we feel numb or even nothing at all, God is able to meet us with help and healing as we cast our cares on Him.

So if you find yourself in a similar situation, keep loving, keep praying, and keep the lines of communication open. God can empower us in love beyond what we think is possible, and give us the wisdom and direction we need to face each day.



From Geoff

Substance abuse is so prevalent in our world right now. There is no specific socioeconomic class, community, or age that struggles with it, it is everywhere. With that being the reality, there is a lot of negative stories out there. All over the news you hear of overdoses, arrests, and other things related to this topic going on. My heart behind writing Hope Lies Ahead is that people will find some hope in the midst of an incredibly difficult time.

It is an up close and personal book for both my father and I, and that is on purpose. We looked at both of our failings, our strengths, and where we could have done things differently. For us it was an honest dialogue about what our journey through substance abuse as a family was like and how we came out on the other side. I hope that it can be the start of an honest dialogue for a lot of other families as well that will point everyone involved toward our one hope—Jesus.

As you read through Hope Lies Ahead, you will see a little bit of yourself in both of us. At times I am pretty hard on my father for some of the things that he did. The thing that I want to remind the reader of is that even when he made mistakes, it was done out of love. He wasn’t the religious Bible thumper I sometimes make him out to be but rather was driven by a deep love for his kids that sometimes got expressed in the wrong way. I think that his perspective is so unique because now he recognizes those moments for what they are and is able to help other people not fall in those same traps. I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for my parents, and this experience ended up sharpening both of us.

Based on what we learned going through this experience, I would say to a parent of a prodigal above all else, maintain relationship. Let them know you love them even when they make huge mistakes. Let them know that if they ever want help you are right there waiting. Make sure they are aware of their options as far as treatment goes and when the opportunity arises to get them there, jump on it. Do it immediately. Don’t wait.

I think we often find ourselves wanting to preach. Addiction can be an infuriating disease to experience, whether you are the one who is addicted or a family member is. In the midst of that anger and frustration, we need to be reminded that our battle is not against flesh and blood. Your war isn’t with that person, it is with the sin that is dominating their life. Don’t exchange your relationship with them for an off handed comment or a sermon about their behavior. It isn’t worth it.

My prayer is that people reading this book will be encouraged in their situation and that they turn first to Jesus. I believe that ultimate redemption looks like Jesus on the cross. It is when something meant for evil gets turned around and used for good. There are many stories of people going through addiction and then using their experience to help others out of it. There is nothing more beautiful than a giant struggle becoming an incredible strength.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate their tour, James and Geoffrey are giving away the grand prize package of Hope Lies Ahead, Prayers For Prodigals and $10 Amazon Gift Card!!

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

Anchored by Death


Police Chief Jo Oliver needed a little time to herself. But when her escape to Wisconsin turns deadly, she teams up with FBI agent Nick Vitarello, hoping to catch the Bow Tie Killer. Their romantic past and complicated present leads them into uncharted territory as they match wits with a psychopath bent on destroying everything they hold dear.

My thoughts: First off, I would recommend that this series be read in order, just to be able to appreciate some of the background on Jo and her relationship with Nick. That said, each mystery can be read as a stand lone, since things regarding the mystery are wrapped up in the story.
We can all relate to needing a little bit of time to ourselves. Thankfully, it's not every day that one finds a body when having some me time, though that is what happens to Jo. This story is suspenseful and easy to race through, which is good since it is hard to put down!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Catherine Finger loves to dream, write, and tell stories. Retired from a wonderful career in public education, she celebrates the ability to choose how to spend her time in a new way during the second half of life. So far, she chooses to write books, ride horses, serve others, and generally find her way into and out of trouble both on the road and at home. She lives in the Midwest with a warm and wonderful combination of family and friends.



More from Catherine
Thank you for your interest in the Jo Oliver thriller series. Today we celebrate Anchored by Death—book three in the series. The basic plot for this book came as a result of an FBI workshop I attended on how profilers track killers. A particular method was presented that really stuck with me. As I thought it over, I had the idea to combine a map of Wisconsin with the tracking technique I had learned, and I actually built the crime scenes around the theory. I then created a killer who would do the sorts of things I had mapped out, and in that order. This was a satisfying challenge for Josie and I enjoyed my research jaunts throughout Wisconsin while writing the chase and takedown scenes.



When Josie’s off the clock and spending time with family and friends, you can catch our heroine in the kitchen. Ever since her infamous Flourless Chocolate Cake appeared in Anchored by Death, fans have requested the recipe. For the epicurean readers, here is the recipe she used when preparing this special treat:

Ingredients:

12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

1 ½ sticks butter

¼ salt

6 eggs, room temp

1 ½ cups sugar (white granulated or brown will do)

Confectioner’s sugar and cocoa powder for dusting top and cake stand

How To:

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Prepare springform or regular round pans with nonstick spray or butter and flour.

Melt chocolate, butter, and salt—microwave will work in a pinch—or add all to heatproof bowl and place over small saucepan of simmering water to melt without burning. Set aside to cool

Beat eggs and sugar until light and thickened, around 6-8 minutes. Fold in melted chocolate mixture until completely combined.

Pour batter into buttered and floured cake pan—springform or regular round—and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 90 minutes, until a toothpick comes out wet but relatively clean.

Allow cake to cool completely before removing from pan. Dust with confectioner’s sugar and cocoa—Jo used a stencil for a quick and pretty design.



Thanks again for celebrating Anchored by Death—and know that I appreciate you. Readers are a special breed. As a lover of the written word and an author, I invite you to enjoy the read.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

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

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

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Oh Gracious!


Life is too short to settle for just anyone.
Grace gave her whole heart to Jesus, but now he wants a part of it.

All she ever wanted was to be a homemaker.

Sure, she has a degree in physics. Yes, she could have a lucrative job in Rockland, but Grace Buscher enjoys her life as a single homemaker. As they say, it’s her choice.

As a successful business owner, a handsome guy, and heir to a small fortune, it’s no wonder Nolan Burke is one of Rockland’s most eligible bachelors. The problem is, he hasn’t met anyone who isn’t looking for a “trophy husband.”

Don’t family-centered women exist anymore?

Grace isn’t exactly eye candy. Nolan is a bit blind. So when an “accidental meeting” forges an unlikely friendship, it becomes obvious to everyone that it’s likely to become more.

But is Grace ready to give up the life she loves for the man she loves?

Find out in this completely updated, revised, and improved version of Chautona Havig’s first novel, Noble Pursuits.

My thoughts: Reading Oh Gracious! kind of made me want to get a hold of Noble Pursuits and see how different the stories are! I enjoyed the characters immensely. I liked that Nolan has to act on what he wants in a woman and actually pursue the kind of woman he can see himself with. I appreciated that he had a list of characteristics that he wanted in a wife and that he stuck to his guns, when he could of gone the easy route and just picked one of the woman who chased him. I liked getting to know he and Grace as they got to know one another through being neighbors. I also loved that this book wasn't super into the looks of either character. While it is stated that Nolan is good looking, we don't have to read detailed descriptions about it over and over, which I get tired of in other stories. lol.
Over all, this was a delightful 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:
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
Wow, My Beloved First Book Was a Hot Mess
On my blog, I sometimes answer readers’ questions, and one of the earliest ones was, “Since you zip out your books so fast, do you ever later wish you had done something differently with them?”

My answer today is the same as back then—usually. No. Yes, I sometimes regret not being able to tell a supporting character’s story because the book has given away that person’s past and/or future. Still, most of the time, I tell the story as I want it.

But in that post about “regrets,” I said that as I learn, I definitely wish to improve sentences here, and others there. I did this already with Argosy Junction, the second book that I published. The first two or three books were experiments where I made many serious mistakes. Took bad advice. Didn’t know the right things to research. All the mistake-ness.

Total transparency here. I chose Argosy Junction to revise first because I made fewer mistakes on it. Still lots, but not as many as my first book, Noble Pursuits.

Bad editing advice, horrible cover design (twice), and just basic writing craft stuff that I didn’t know when I started this whole journey all culminated in a book I both loved (the story) and hated (the final result). Many reviewers said the same thing, too. That poor book has the worst reviews of all of my books combined.

And for good reason.
But it’s a good story—one I love, as I said—and it has some strong fans. Some readers were able to look past the problems and see the heart of what I tried to do with it. And that was a beautiful thing. Those readers, actually, are the ones I’ve rewritten this book for.

Yes, I rewrote Noble Pursuits. While every sentence isn’t completely rewritten, enough are that I considered it a new book, not just a revised one.

A few readers have panicked to see the title changed, the story rewritten. They’ve asked if I took out this or even that. I took out and added nothing that 99.9% of readers would ever notice. And it’s a better book for it.

I am updating the original Noble Pursuits file with the new text. I’m doing this in hopes that those who already own that book can go into their digital content on Amazon and get the updated version. I don’t know if it will work, but I pray it does.

Meanwhile, for those who’ve asked why they can’t buy the first book on my Suggested Reading Order list, well… now you can!

Oh, Gracious! has been a long time coming, but she’s here with a new title, rewritten content, and even a lovely new cover by the brilliantly talented Perry Elizabeth. It took what seems like forever to settle on a title, but we finally did. Why we chose Oh, Gracious! however, is a story for another day.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of one paperback copy of each of the 3 fully revised novels: Oh, Gracious, Argosy Junction, and Thirty Days Hath…!!

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


Thursday, April 23, 2020

Jesus Rose for Me


Every Easter, we celebrate that Jesus Christ is more powerful than death. But what does that mean for your little one? Jesus Rose for Me by author Jared Kennedy helps toddlers and preschoolers understand the true, Christian meaning of Easter in a personal, memorable way.

This board book is a part of The Beginner s Gospel Story Bible series. For children ages three to seven, this beautifully illustrated book begins with Palm Sunday and ends with Easter, when Jesus rose for us. Children will learn that Jesus Christ is our king, and that everyone who trusts in him is part of his forever family.

Help your kids understand that Jesus died for us and rose from the dead. Because of the compelling content and modern, vivid illustrations, children will live in the joy of the greatest truth of all: Jesus is alive!

This conversational, Christian book simply tells the Biblical story of the gospel and invites children to respond. Jesus Rose for Me helps toddlers and preschoolers celebrate that every day is resurrection day.

My thoughts: This colorful little board book was the perfect one to have on hand for Easter time, though it is a wonderful one to read throughout the year to remind your child of the hope that is found with Jesus having risen from the dead. I loved that we were able to focus more on the true meaning behind Easter this year, with being forced to slow down through the shelter in place orders. I feel like my children and I were able to really soak up the message of Easter, and this beautiful book helped to engage them. This is an excellent book to pick up for the young children in your life!
I received a copy of this book from the publisher, this is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

The Joy of Falling


Eva and Angela must learn to live again. One step at a time.

It has been fifteen months since Eva and Angela lost their thrill-seeking husbands in a scuba diving accident. Both women are trying to navigate their way through the grief, but neither one is making much progress. Angela is barely making ends meet, angry at her husband for leaving her to raise three children on her own. Meanwhile, Eva is stuck, unable to move forward after losing the love of her life and her source of inspiration.

But then Eva gets a life-changing phone call. Before Brent and Wes died, they had signed up for a race of a lifetime—an ultra-marathon in beautiful New Zealand. Eva begs Angela to run the race with her in their husbands’ place, and Angela finally agrees, hoping to finally understand her husband’s choices.

Training is exhausting, and the race is even more demanding. Their journey grows more complicated by the presence of two men—Marc is Brent’s best friend who is running the race with Eva and Angela, and Simon King is a writer who is covering their inspiring story. With every step, Eva and Angela must ask themselves questions that they haven’t had the courage to ask before. As the women literally put one foot in front of the other, they wonder: Is it possible to find their way forward in hope?

My thoughts: This book hit home for me in a lot of ways, since we lost my sister in law to cancer almost 2 years ago. So, while I haven't lost a spouse, I do know what it is like to lose someone who is way to young to death and how the grief can affect people in different ways, as well as hit you out of no where. Lindsay does an amazing job of capturing how we grieve differently with this book. I feel like I could relate to both of Evan and Angela at different points, and can only imagine what it would of been like in their shoes! I loved their journey of healing that they took! I hadn't read much before hand about races like the one in this story. While I am by no means a runner, it almost tempts me to become one if it means traveling to beautiful places like New Zealand.
This is a wonderful, tug on the heartstrings 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:
Lindsay Harrel is a lifelong book nerd who lives in Arizona with her young family and two golden retrievers in serious need of training. She’s held a variety of writing and editing jobs over the years and now juggles stay-at-home mommyhood with writing novels. When she’s not writing or chasing after her children, Lindsay enjoys making a fool of herself at Zumba, curling up with anything by Jane Austen, and savoring sour candy one piece at a time. Connect with her at LindsayHarrel.com.

Read an Excerpt
Click here to read the first four chapters.

Terror in the Skies


A hijacked airplane. A fatal disaster. A desperate soul in need of salvation …

Willow’s spirited, carefree, and far too young to die. Trapped on a hijacked airplane with no promise of survival, Willow’s forced to confront her darkest fear as well as her soul’s deepest need.

Terror in the Skies is the first novella in the Turbulent Skies Christian Thriller series, an unforgettable collection of interconnected novellas about strangers traveling together aboard a doomed flight. Find out why Christian fiction readers can’t stop raving about this heart-stopping, fast-paced series you can devour in a single sitting.

If you like harrowing stories of faith and redemption, spine-tingling adrenaline surges, and heart-pounding Christian suspense, you’ll love these edge-of-your-seat novellas by USA Today bestselling author, Alana Terry.

Dive into the breathtaking Turbulent Skies series today. Just be careful … you may not be able to read just one!

My thoughts: Another wonderful story by Alana! After reading the Kennedy series, readers will enjoy getting to read about the flight details from Willow's point of view. I thought that Willow was a unique and fun characters, and that the story had an excellent message. I look forward to reading more in this series!
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the author:
Alana is a pastor’s wife, homeschooling mom, self-diagnosed chicken lady, and Christian suspense author. Her novels have won awards from Women of Faith, Book Club Network, Grace Awards, Readers’ Favorite, and more. Alana’s passion for social justice, human rights, and religious freedom shines through her writing, and her books are known for raising tough questions without preaching. She and her family live in rural Alaska where the northern lights in the winter and midnight sun in the summer make hauling water, surviving the annual mosquito apocalypse, and cleaning goat stalls in negative forty degrees worth every second.



More from Alana
I’m excited to share my new Turbulent Skies Christian Thriller novella series with all of you! The inspiration behind this series came when I was taking a flight a few years ago … and indulging in one of my favorite past times – people watching! As I looked at the various passengers around me, I started to wonder about their lives … and it was from that line of thinking this novella series was born!

I first wrote a book about a terrifying experience on board an airplane years earlier, (Turbulence, Book #5 in the Kennedy Stern series) and because many members of my amazing Readers’ Club had been asking me to write a book featuring Willow, one of their favorite characters from the Kennedy Stern series, it seemed fitting that Willow gets to be the star in the first of these novellas.

Terror in the Skies is Willow’s story. She’s a chic Alaskan college student, a free spirit who finds herself sharing a dorm room with a conservative Christian missionary kid. Willow first makes her appearance in the Kennedy Stern Christian suspense series, meaning that over a hundred thousand readers have met her!

I can’t tell you too much about this life-of-the-party aspiring actress (mostly because I don’t want to spoil anything for you if you happen to still be making your way through the Kennedy Stern books). But I can tell you she is the first main character in this six-book novella series that helps answer the question: “Who are you really sitting next to hundreds of feet up in the air?”

Maybe, like me, after reading this series, you’ll never look at your fellow passengers the same way!

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Alana is giving away the grand prize of a $30 Amazon Gift Card!!

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

Lost Down Deep


Lost Down Deep Blog Tour 


Welcome to the Blog Tour & Giveaway for Lost Down Deep by Sara Davison, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!


ABOUT THE BOOK


Lost Down Deep by Sara Davison

Title: Lost Down Deep


Series: The Rose Tattoo Trilogy #1


Author: Sara Davison


Release Date: April 1, 2020


Genre: Romantic Suspense








She is the only one who can tell the police who attacked her in her home. If only she could remember…





Summer Velasquez is on the run from a man she has no recollection of after an attack she can’t recall. Every face in the crowd is a potential suspect, so how is Summer supposed to know who is a threat to her and who isn’t?





After fleeing her assailant and the parents who lied to her about what happened, she changes her name and seeks refuge in Elora, Ontario. The small town feels familiar, although she has no memory of ever having been here.





Even in what should be a safe place, she can’t shake the feeling that she is being watched.





When Ryan Taylor strolls into the Taste of Heaven Café where she works, Summer is immediately drawn to him. However, he may not be who he says he is either. As her suspicions grow, Summer prepares to run again.





But at least one person is determined to stop her. Permanently. And if she can’t remember who he is, this time he may succeed.





PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository




 










Excerpt:

She couldn’t remember ever setting foot in this town, but somehow, as she gazed out over the rooftops of the houses on the far side of the river, she was filled with a sense of something she couldn’t quite identify. Home, maybe? Perhaps the place reminded her of somewhere else she had been. Or maybe—she pressed a hand to her chest—maybe she had been here in the last few years and the memory of the town was one of the countless others that had been erased from

her mind. She turned and sagged against the stone. If she had been here, did she know anyone in town? Would someone recognize her? If so, maybe she wasn’t as safe as she’d hoped.

An acrid smell wafted on the air. Summer looked down and frowned. Someone had tossed a cigarette butt into a cleared area beneath a tree. A dry, rust-brown leaf curled beneath the still-burning butt, tendrils of smoke winding up around its edges. She frowned. The tree could have caught on fire. How could anyone be so careless? She strode over and stomped on the leaf and the cigarette, grinding both deep into the ground until she was certain any chance of a flare-up had passed. Summer glanced around. She hadn’t noticed anyone else on the pathway, but someone had clearly been in the area in the last few minutes.

A cool breeze skimmed her cheeks and she shivered. Get a grip, Summer. No one knows you’re here. The news the police detective had given her had rattled her more than she’d realized. If she was going to hide away in this town and concentrate on getting her memories back, she’d have to get over it, stop jumping at every noise and looking for danger where none existed.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR



Sara Davison




Sara Davison is the author of the romantic suspense series, The Seven Trilogy and The Night Guardians. She has been a finalist for eight national writing awards, including Best New Canadian Christian author, a Carol Award, and two Daphne du Maurier Awards for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. She is a Word and Cascade Award winner. She currently resides in Ontario, Canada with her husband Michael and their three children, all of whom she (literally) looks up to.





CONNECT WITH SARA: Website | Facebook | Twitter



 














TOUR GIVEAWAY



(1) winner will receive a print copy of Lost Down Deep by Sara Davison and a $25 Amazon Gift Card!





Lost Down Deep JustRead Giveaway





Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight April 20, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on April 27, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US/CAN mailing addresses only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.





Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.







 





Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!


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Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Bitter Honey


With God, all things are possible.
But can lost love be found again or two wounded hearts knitted together?
Young love, sweeter than honey, is separated by a natural disaster and turns bitter. After five years, a miracle reunites Samantha Adams and Silas Mercier, but it seems it’s too late. Will love prevail?

My thoughts: I love that Caryl brings the story back to Samantha and Silas, after having them meet and fall in love in another book. After writing letters to keep in touch, the two are separated when a tornado turns Silas' life upside down and causes him to lose Samantha's address. When they meet up again after 5 years, there is a lot of assumptions to work through as they take the chance to get to know one another again. I love that Caryl brings both the main characters to life as well as some of the side characters, having another romance along with Silas and Samantha. This is an excellent historical book to pick 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:
Praying her story gives God glory, award-winning author Caryl McAdoo continues prolificity with her new Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga series. Readers around the world enjoy her best-selling novels and shower them with 5-Star ratings galore. With forty-eight titles—and counting—her love for writing is obvious; the lady loves singing the new songs the Lord gives her as well! (Check out YouTube). Caryl gave Ron four children and the couple shares eighteen grandsugars. The McAdoos live in the woods south of Clarksville, the seat of Red River County, in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door.

More from Caryl
Are you ready to revisit the Adams and Corbin families (from UNIQUELY COMMON and REMI)? Five years have passed, so it’s 1853, and life has gone on.

Samantha, only fourteen back then, wrote faithfully to Silas back in New Orleans as she traveled west on the Oregon/California Trail. She expected a tall stack of letters waiting on her at the General Store in Napa, but alas there were none.

BITTER HONEY is a story of puppy love time tries to dissipate, but Samantha never forgot Silas—or forgave him either! Though she had no way of knowing what tragic events had kept him from mailing the return missives, he never quit thinking of the beautiful girl who’d written of her love for him.

However, each day that passed only made it harder for him to write. Until he decided only a face-to-face talk would suffice, he worked with the man who’d always loved his mother, Claude, to rebuild his family’s vineyard, catching gators on the side.

This story has a second love story, that of Claude and the prostitute he rescues Odette, so there’s plenty of action to keep readers flipping pages. A story of first love and late, second-chance love with a taste of the Cajun life in Louisiana, BITTER HONEY is about restoration and following God’s will.

I hope you enjoy BITTER HONEY and all the other Lockets and Lace stories!
BLESSINGS!

Blog stops: go here for a list of the blog stops.

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

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

The Multicultural Church


Despite the progress our country has made in Civil Rights over the past century, Sunday morning is still one of the most segregated times in America. It seems like the only people striving to lead in the area of racial reconciliation are politicians, activists, and celebrities. Pastor Dan Willis wants to know… Where is the church? What can the people of God do to become leaders again and not just be Johnny-come-lately followers? The art of bringing harmony to the masses lies in the love all should see in the church of God. If the church is to make a difference and return to relevance in this world, the only option is multicultural ministry. If leaders are not prepared to minister to this growing culture, then American Christianity is in danger of becoming nonessential to the body of believers. For years, Dan Willis has led a growing, multicultural Christian community in the suburbs of Chicago. In The Multicultural Church, Dan shares what he has learned, the mistakes he has made, and what can be done to successfully minister to a diverse culture.

My thoughts: This is an excellent short book for pastors, or those wanting their church to be more inclusive, to pick up and glean from the experience that Dan went through to turn his church into a multicultural one. I never really stopped to think about it before, but there is a segregation within the church, and it's a shame. I like that he points out that God doesn't see skin color, which while obvious to some of us, still bears repeating. I also love some of the other ideas he implemented in his church that weren't necessarily geared towards just ending segregation, but are good practices for life in general.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest reivew.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
As a boy, Dan Willis’s dreamed of becoming neurosurgeon until the fateful day when, at age sixteen, he was called to “temporarily” take over as pastor of a local church. Dan took that small ministry of sixteen people and nurtured it into the largest multicultural church on the south side of Chicago, consisting of over five thousand members. Today, Dan still serves as senior pastor of The Lighthouse Church of All Nations, in Alsip, Illinois. The driving force of Dan’s ministry has always been one of uniting the races. To look out over the congregation during a typical worship celebration, you will see men, women, and children from over seventy-two different nations. Dan is also a gifted singer, musician, and producer. He founded a community choir called The Pentecostals of Chicago, bringing together black, white, Hispanic, and Asian singers from over twenty Chicago area churches. This group, now known as The All Nations Choir, has six albums to its credit and has performed with artists from Celine Dion to Kirk Franklin, and has served on missionary trips to the orphanages of Kingston, Jamaica.
A celebrated television host, he created and hosted the Emmy-nominated shows Inspiration Sensation and I’m Just Sayin’. Dan has traveled the country ministering and teaching men and women through the Starting Line Prison Fellowship organization and has also been a national and international speaker on the topics of music, ministry, racial reconciliation, leadership, and community development. Dan is the author of Freedom to Forget and most recently, Praise Is My Weapon. Dan continues to live in Alsip with his wife, Linda, and is father to four grown children and eight grandchildren.



More from Dan
I have led a successful and growing multicultural congregation in the Chicago suburbs for over twenty years. I wanted to write a short book packed with practical information sharing my personal stories of successes and failures in cross-cultural ministry.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate his tour, Dan is giving away the grand prize of a $20 Starbucks gift card!!

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

The Story Peddler


Selling stories is a deadly business

Tanwen doesn’t just tell stories—she weaves them into crystallized sculptures that sell for more than a few bits. But the only way to escape the control of her cruel mentor and claw her way from poverty is to set her sights on something grander: becoming Royal Storyteller to the king.

During her final story peddling tour, a tale of treason spills from her hands, threatening the king himself. Tanwen goes from peddler to prey as the king’s guard hunts her down . . . and they’re not known for their mercy. As Tanwen flees for her life, she unearths long-buried secrets and discovers she’s not the only outlaw in the empire. There’s a rebel group of weavers . . . and they’re after her too.


Author bio:
Lindsay A. Franklin is a Carol Award–winning author, freelance editor, and homeschooling mom of three. She would wear pajama pants all the time if it were socially acceptable. Lindsay lives in her native San Diego with her scruffy-looking nerf-herder husband, their precious geeklings, three demanding thunder pillows (a.k.a. cats), and a stuffed marsupial named Wombatman. You can find Lindsay on Instagram @LinzyAFranklin.

My thoughts: This story is excellent! Imaginative and a great start to the series. I enjoyed getting to know Tanwen as she uncovers secrets surrounding who she is an those who have gifts like hers. Lindsay does a wonderful job with the world building and has some fantastic characters. I highly recommend this whole series, since it is very enjoyable!
I received a copy of this book from the publisher. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

The House at the End of the Moor



What Can a London Opera Star and an Escaped Dartmoor Prisoner Have in Common?

Opera star Maggie Lee escapes her opulent lifestyle when threatened by a powerful politician who aims to ruin her life. She runs off to the wilds of the moors to live in anonymity. All that changes the day she discovers a half-dead man near her house. Escaped convict Oliver Ward is on the run to prove his innocence, until he gets hurt and is taken in by Maggie. He discovers some jewels in her possession—the very same jewels that got him convicted. Together they hatch a plan to return the jewels, clearing Oliver’s name and hopefully maintaining Maggie’s anonymity.

My thoughts: I thought that this book was exceptionally well written, since the story reflects a bit of the Moors that it is set on. I thought that the history was fascinating, both the side of what opera singers had to endure in the 1800's due to the reputation of those on the stage, as well as learning more about Dartmoor prison (which, fascinatingly, still functions as a prison today.). The mystery is wonderful too, with trying to figure out how the different pieces go together. I also love the redemption of one of the characters, since it was not an easy story to write. I think too often, I would figure someone like that might be "to far gone" to experience a change of heart, but God can work miracles. I love that Michelle tackles that with this story, since a lot of Christian authors write characters like this one off.
Suffice it to say, this is a wonderful story to pick up!
I received this story from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Purchase a copy here:

This post contains affiliate links.

About the Author:
Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She is the Christy Award-winning author of historical romances: A Tale of Two Hearts, The Captured Bride, The Innkeeper’s Daughter, 12 Days at Bleakly Manor, The Captive Heart, Brentwood’s Ward, A Heart Deceived, and Gallimore, but also leaped the historical fence into the realm of contemporary with the zany romantic mystery Out of the Frying Pan. If you’d like to keep up with her escapades, find her at www.michellegriep.com or stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.





More from Michelle
What comes to mind when you hear the word moor? For some, images of Jane Eyre spring to life. For others, The Hound of the Baskervilles starts barking. But for most, it’s a big fat goose egg. The fact is that most Americans don’t have a clue what a moor is, but never fear, my friend…after you read the next few paragraphs, you’ll never again go blank-minded when you hear the word moor.



Last summer I skipped across the pond and tromped around Dartmoor with my daughter and husband. What an awesome experience. I learned first-hand just how windy this vast stretch of land can be, for that’s really what a moor is at heart: a vast stretch of land. Webster’s defines it as an expanse of open rolling infertile land. Sounds rather desolate, eh? Yeah. Kind of. But it’s oh so much more.



In spring and summer, green does abound. Gorse bushes. Scrubby grasses. Lambs and sheep and goats. All these animals roam free so there are trails worn into the dirt that you can hike along. But I hear you…where could you possibly go if there’s nothing besides some farm animals roaming around the place?



You could hike to a tor, which is a “high, craggy hill.” Some of them can be a little treacherous to climb, but sweet mercy, what a view! The earth stretches out like a green and brown quilt. As I hiked that day last spring, whispers in the wind inspired me to wonder a lot of what-ifs, and those what-ifs came together in a story of intrigue and betrayal.



What would you do if you found a half-dead man bleeding in the middle of nowhere? Find out what heroine Maggie Lee does in The House at the End of the Moor.

For a complete list of blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Michelle is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a free 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, April 20, 2020

Desert Willow



After a failed engagement, Captain Andrew Lee James has focused on building a career in the Army he loves. That commitment includes helping a feisty, out-of-work ballerina whose devotion to her grandmother’s dying wish immediately grabs his heart. She’s the one, but will he be able to win the heart of a woman who has vowed to never be involved with a soldier?

College graduate Clara Malone swore to never love anyone in the military again but when her dying grandmother asks her to deliver a love letter to the general who broke her heart decades ago, she agrees and finds herself escorted by a handsome Army captain whose kindness challenges her beliefs. Surrounded by desert willows that shower her path with pretty pink flowers and sing with the buzzing of hummingbirds, Clara enjoys the wild beauty of El Paso—and her time with Andrew—more than expected.

Can she deliver her grandmother’s last love letter without losing her heart to a man who represents everything she fears?

My thoughts: Desert Willow is a unique story about one young woman seeking to help her grandmother out by delivering a last letter to the man who broke her heart as a young woman. I enjoyed the vivid pictures this story paints of family relationships and the secrets that are buried in the past. Clara is a delightful heroine who has seen what loving military men has done to the women in her family and who has sworn off forming an attachment to one herself. As she works with Andrew, she finds her expectations about live challenged in many ways.
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:
Patricia Beal is a 2015 Genesis semi-finalist and First Impressions finalist. A Season to Dance is her debut novel (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, May 2017). Her second novel comes out in February of 2020. Patricia graduated magna cum laude from the University of Cincinnati in 1998 with a B.A. in English Literature and has worked for the U.S. Army as a writer and editor for many years. Patricia writes from Fayetteville, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband and two children. You can find more info about Patricia on her website here.



More from Patricia
Desert Willow: A Love Song to the City of El Paso, to Family, and to Prince Harry

I enjoy this story so much! It’s great to finally get to share it with you.

Desert Willow started as a NaNoWriMo project in 2015 and has a lot of my grandma’s history in it—life in the German colonies of the south of Brazil, the beginning of the shoe industry there, and the story of the most influential man her town has ever known, my great-grandfather.

And what does that have to do with El Paso and Prince Harry?

Well, my Prince Harry lookalike, a young Army captain named Andrew Lee James who lives in El Paso, is helping the protagonist deliver her grandmother’s last love letter, a letter she was urged to write all those years ago after what happened in Brazil.

The contemporary story of Clara (protagonist) and Andrew was fun to write too because I’ve been around the Army since the nineties. We moved to Fort Bliss/El Paso in 2012 and lived there for six years. I thought I was going to hate it, but I loved it, so I just had to write an El Paso story.

Now I think that what I enjoyed the most about writing this novel was making all the connections and showing how the actions of a distant past affect and inform the modern story so deeply.

Some of you have journeyed with me for a while and know that my debut, A Season to Dance, was my salvation process. What comes after salvation can be hard. What’s that? Well, looking at past mistakes through God’s eyes and realizing just how wrong we were, for starters.

We know how quickly God forgives us, but can we forgive ourselves and each other as quickly?

Desert Willow deals with all that. And with Prince Harry… 😊

For a complete list of the blog stops, go here!

Giveaway!
To celebrate her tour, Patricia is giving away the grand prize of a Kindle Fire 7 (https://amzn.to/37TEN21)!!

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

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Change of Heart

Molly Jebber is an award-winning author of Amish Historical Romance. Molly’s books have been featured in Publisher’s Weekly, USA Today’s HEA, featured in video on Naples News and Romantic Times. She’s a touring speaker for Women’s Christian Connection, and she offers presentations on writing, marketing, agent or no agent, publishing, and the Amish lifestyles and traditions. She’s been a guest lecturer for conferences, author events, and at Ohio State University for an event in 2020.

CHANGE OF HEART, GRACE’S FORGIVENESS, & TWO SUITORS FOR ANNA – these books are her Keepsake Pocket Quilt Series. LIZA’S SECOND CHANCE, ELLIE’S REDEMPTION, & HANNAH’S COURAGE are her Amish Charm Bakery Series books. Check her website www.mollyjebber.com for more of her books and where she’ll be next!

She loves God, her family, and friends. She says yes to swimming, the beach, golf, and time with her family and friends, and no to coconut, onions, and skydiving!



About the book:

A modern new century brings a young Amish woman an unexpected new life—and a chance to discover love's true way home…

Ohio, 1899. Soft-spoken midwife Becca Yost lived by her Amish faith's strict rules—until her fiancĂ© jilted her before their entire community. She's never been away from home, but the bustling Englischer town of Massillon, Ohio, is a welcome unexpected refuge. Especially when she goes to work for Dr. Matt Carrington, who shares her passion for healing those in need. His outgoing spirit and gentle strength show Becca a surprising new world of choices—and irresistible love. But there is one formidable obstacle: Matt's wealthy mother is determined her son will marry a society woman.

With her newfound resolve challenged, Becca decides that she and Matt must not be destined for each other after all. She accepts that she will have to forge a life alone—until a wrenching crisis and life-changing revelations teach her that true faith lies in all things, especially impossible second chances. . .

My thoughts: I love that Becca is a trained midwife! When she is jilted by her fiancé, she decides to make a new life for herself by living with her sister and working at a doctor's office. I loved the difficulties that Becca must overcome, Molly does an excellent job at bringing the time period to life, as well as the characters! This is an enjoyable story to pick up!
I received a copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. This is my honest opinion of the book.

Tweets

Change of Heart by http://www.mollyjebber.com

$2.99 Ebook (print available)Will love conquer all? Becca has difficult decisions to make, and she's faces danger, a kidnapping and more . . .  



Change of Heart by http://www.mollyjebber.com



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Stay


As women, we are exhausted. Our hearts are being wrung out to dry--squeezed and yanked in every direction. We take care of everyone but ourselves. We've gotten lost in bedtime routines and our Costco lists. We have lost our voices in the storm of everyday life. We need to be reminded to reach inward and heed the quiet voice whispering, Stay.

This book is for anyone who longs for a connection with God and his people but can't seem to escape the haunting feelings of guilt, shame, loneliness, and fear. Through raw, authentic stories, (in)courage writer Anjuli Paschall invites you to stop running from your pain and to recognize that the deep end of your story is the way to intimacy with Christ. Alongside Anjuli, you will encounter a loving God who invites you to stay with him at the table of your soul, where you are free to spill the milk, to fumble through your words, to embrace the awkwardness and the joy, and to taste and see that he is good.

My thoughts: We all wish for an easy life, though that isn't what God promises His people. He does, however, promise that He will always be there, and that we can use our hurts for good, if we follow Him. I thought that this was a well written, excellent book on just that topic. I appreciated that Anjuli shares from the heart. This book is easy to read and enjoyable, despite dealing with the hard stuff. I felt like I was sitting down and sharing with a good friend! I highly recommend this book.
I received Stay from the publisher. This is my honest review.


This post contains affiliate links.

The Traitor's Pawn


When FBI agent Jack Shannon arrives in Corpus Christi, Texas, he is focused on one thing: find the man who has been selling encrypted government secrets to the Chinese through online birding chat rooms. But when a senator is shot during a hunting trip and the woman he was with is abducted, Jack agrees to join the search--especially when he discovers that the kidnapping victim is Aubrey Grayson, a woman he was once in love with.

As the search continues, it becomes clear the senator may not have been the intended victim--and Aubrey may be connected to the other case Jack is supposed to be working on. Can Jack untangle the knots before it's too late? And when he learns the truth, will it be too painful to get past?

Join the hunt for the truth--and a traitor--in this tension-laden story of secrets, betrayal, and second chances.

My thoughts: This was an excellent mystery that starts off with adventure from the get go, when Aubrey is abducted and one of her good friends shot and left for dead. I love that the story is fast paced and keeps throwing all these twists and turns at the reader, leaving you wondering what is possibly going on. Excellent story to pick up, though be sure not to start it too close to bedtime, as it's hard to put down!
I received this book from the publisher. This is my honest review.


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Home on Huckleberry Hill


Huckleberry Hill, Wisconsin’s irrepressible eighty-something matchmakers Anna and Felty Helmuth are at it again. And this time they’re willing to rough it to get the job done . . .

Mary Anne Neuenschwander knows she should be content with what Gotte has given her. She has a comfortable house, a fruitful farm, and a good, steady husband. But after nearly six years of marriage, she still longs for a baby. Yet her husband, Jethro, seems to care more about fishing than about his wife. Unable to bear Jethro’s indifference, Mary Anne moves into a tent in the woods where he won’t have to be bothered. But when her mammi and dawdi find out what she’s done, they’ll stop at nothing—including a little camping trip of their own—to help save their granddaughter’s marriage . . .

Jethro’s greatest blessing is his beloved wife, Mary Anne. Nothing else in his life has turned out anywhere near the way he expected. Rather than burden Mary Anne with his disappointment, he shields her by spending less and less time at home and more time on the river. But when he finds that she’s moved out, he’s shocked. What will people think? What is Mary Anne thinking? And what clever plans are her grandparents hatching?. . .

My thoughts: This has been a delightful series! I enjoy that we get to catch up with some of the characters in each new book that comes out. I loved getting to know Mary Anne and Jethro as they deal with their struggles to have more children after the loss of one. I love how Anna and Felty use their matchmaking to help their granddaughter work through the impasse she seems to be at with her marriage. This is a fun book to enjoy! The whole series is wonderful/
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.

Bio

Jennifer Beckstrand is the two-time RITA-nominated, #1 Amazon bestselling Amish romance author of The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series, The Honeybee Sisters series, and The Petersheim Brothers series for Kensington Books. Huckleberry Summer and Home on Huckleberry Hill were both nominated for the coveted RITA® Award from Romance Writers of America. Jennifer has always been drawn to the strong faith and the enduring family ties of the Plain people and loves writing about the antics of Anna and Felty Helmuth, the Honeybee sisters’ aendi Bitsy, and Alfie and Benji Petersheim. Jennifer has written twenty-two Amish romances, a historical Western, and the nonfiction book, Big Ideas. Jennifer is represented by Nicole Resciniti of the Seymour Agency. She and her husband have been married for thirty-five years, and she has six children and eight adorable grandchildren, whom she spoils rotten.



Social Media Link

Website: http://www.jenniferbeckstrand.com/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jenniferbeckstrandfans

Twitter: @JenniferBeckst1

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Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Jennifer-Beckstrand/e/B0073GHCOG/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1488910908&sr=8-2-ent

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Bookbub: @JenniferBeckstrand https://www.bookbub.com/authors/jennifer-beckstrand

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