Posted in Book Reviews

GIVEAWAY and Book Review: The Secret Slipper by Amanda Tero

146Being a cripple is only the beginning of Lia’s troubles. It seems as if Bioti’s goal in life is to make Lia as miserable as possible. If Lia’s purpose is to be a slave, then why did God make her a cripple? How can He make something beautiful out of her deformity?

Raoul never questioned the death of his daughter until someone reports her whereabouts. If Ellia is still alive, how has she survived these ten years with her deformity? When Raoul doesn’t know who to trust, can he trust God to keep Ellia safe when evidence reveals Bioti’s dangerous character?

As time brings more hindrances, will Raoul find Ellia, or will she forever be lost to the father she doesn’t even know is searching for her?

What I Loved: I appreciate knowing that when I pick up a Tero story, I’ll find something with a strong Christian message. This young lady has much respect for the gospel and presents it well within her work and The Secret Slipper was no exception.
Tero brings a new and creative take on the classic Cinderella story. She strips it of all magic and, instead of a common romance, it’s a love story between father and daughter. I admire the creativity that went into this novella as well as the series.
The setting comes to life with authentic names. And among the rich setting was a timeless message about God turning the difficult things of life into blessings.

Rating and Recommendation: I’m giving The Secret Slipper 5 stars and I recommend it to those who enjoy fairy tale retellings and especially to the younger audience. This a series mothers can feel confident about handing to their daughters.

~ I received a copy from the author. I was not compensated for this review. All thoughts are my own. 

Pick up your copy of The Secret Slipper

Giveaway Details: 

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U.S. Giveaway: Enter to win the set of “Befriending the Beast” and “The Secret Slipper”

International Giveaway: Enter to win the eBook set of “Befriending the Beast” and “The Secret Slipper”

Giveaway winners will be announced on Amanda’s blog May 5, 2017.

 

Connect with Amanda

Email: amandaterobooks@gmail.com

Website: http://amandatero.com/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/amandaterobooks

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amandateroauthor/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/amandaruthtero/

Blog: http://www.withajoyfulnoise.blogspot.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/AmandaTero

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/amandatero

 

 

Posted in Book Reviews

GIVEAWAY and Book Review: True to You by Becky Wade

142Exciting Start of a Brand-New Series by a Contemporary Romance Fan Favorite

After a devastating heartbreak three years ago, genealogist and historical village owner Nora Bradford has decided that burying her nose in her work and her books is far safer than romance in the here and now.

Unlike Nora, former Navy SEAL and Medal of Honor recipient John Lawson is a modern-day man, usually 100 percent focused on the present. But when he’s diagnosed with an inherited condition, he’s forced to dig into the secrets of his past and his adoption as an infant, enlisting Nora to help him uncover the identity of his birth mother.

The more time they spend together, the more this pair of opposites suspects they just might be a perfect match. However, John’s already dating someone and Nora’s not sure she’s ready to trade her crushes on fictional heroes for the risks of a real relationship. Finding the answers they’re seeking will test the limits of their identity, their faith, and their devotion to one another.

What I Loved: One of the first things that struck me when I finished reading, was how invested I had become with this family. I felt like I really knew them, and more than that, I really liked them in the same way you might feel about an old family friend. I can’t wait to revisit the Bradford family in the rest of the series!
I was able to start my Bradford journey with Wade’s novella, Then Came You.  While it’s not necessary to read the novella to understand the novel, if you’re planning to read it, I’d recommend reading the novella first since the novel spoils the novella. The novella is an epistolary, meaning that the entire story is told through letters, journals, and such. I adored how True to You carried on this theme by ending each chapter with a series of text messages or emails. It was a unique touch that paid off.
But above all the wonder, fun, charming characters, and moving plot is a solid Biblical message about finding your identity in Christ ALONE. I appreciated Wade’s efforts to bring these broken, and often self-reliant, characters to a deeper understanding of Christ and our relationship with Him.

A note to the conservative readers: Both the novella and the novel feature a rape. The details are handled in a tasteful way and never experienced through a point of view character, so the harsh realities are kept to a minimum. Because it wasn’t experienced through the point of view character, I wasn’t bothered by it, but you’ll have to judge for yourself.
The kissing scenes were also tastefully handled, but I’ll be honest and say that I found some of the lingo Wade used to be tasteless for a Christian novel. While I’m on board with characters showing and even thinking about their desires to some degree, I found it strange to have these desires so blatantly labeled with the terms “sexual desires” and low or high “libido.” It’s just not what I expected to find. It wasn’t to the degree that it ruined the story for me, but I could have done without it and been happier for it. Not everyone will agree with me. My comments here are meant for other readers who lean on the more conservative side in their fiction reading.

Rating and Recommendation: I’m giving True to You 5 stars and recommending it to anyone who enjoys Christian Romance.

~I received a copy from Litfuse. I was not compensated for this review. All thoughts are my own.

GIVEAWAY INFORMATION:

 Do opposites really attract? John and Nora might just be the perfect match. Find out in True to You, book one in Becky Wade’s new series! Genealogist and historical village owner Nora Bradford has decided that burying her nose in her work and her books is far safer than romance in the here and now. Former Navy SEAL and Medal of Honor recipient John Lawson is a modern-day man, usually 100 percent focused on the present. But when he’s diagnosed with an inherited condition, he’s forced to dig into the secrets of his past and his adoption as an infant, enlisting Nora to help him uncover the identity of his birth mother. Finding the answers they’re seeking will test the limits of their identity, their faith, and their devotion to one another.

Celebrate the launch of Becky Wade’s new series by entering to win a fabulous prize pack and $100 cash card!

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A copy of True to You
  • A $100 Visa cash card
  • A prize pack hand-picked by Becky

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on May 30. The winner will be announced May 31 on the Litfuse blog.

Posted in Book Reviews

GIVEAWAY and Book Review: My Heart Belongs in Ruby City, Idaho by Susanne Dietze

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Journey now to Ruby City, Idaho of 1866 where…
A Marriage Mishap Creates an Awkward Love Triangle in this Silver Mining Town

Looking forward to a quiet life and a full stomach, mail-order bride Rebecca Rice is pleased to marry her shopkeeper intended, Mr. Fordham, until the justice of the peace calls him Thaddeus, not Theodore—proceeded by the title Deputy.

Is it possible to marry the wrong man?

When the newlyweds realize they’ve married the wrong partners with similar names, an annulment seems in order—and fast, since Rebecca’s true intended is impatient to claim her as his own, not to mention Rebecca would never marry a lawman like her father. But when the legalities take longer than expected, Rebecca wonders if Tad wasn’t the right husband for her all along. . . .

More from My Heart Belongs in Series…
My Heart Belongs in Fort Bliss: Priscilla’s Reveille by Erica Vetsch (January 2017)
My Heart Belongs in the Superstition Mountains: Carmella’s Quandary by Susan Page Davis (March 2017)
My Heart Belongs on Mackinac Island: Maude’s Mooring by Carrie Fancett Pagels (July 2017)
My Heart Belongs in the Shenandoah Valley: Lily’s Dilemma by Andrea Boeshaar (September 2017)

What I Loved: From start to finish this book had captivated me. I ran across Dietze before through some of the novella collections I had read in the past, and her writing stood out to me. Not only was I thrilled to get my hands on her full-length novel, but I found it to be all that I had expected from her. I found characters that I enjoyed spending time with, as well as a charming supporting cast.
I read the entire book in two days and laughed the whole way through. It was the perfect light-hearted read that just hit the spot. I only wish I had the time to start it all back over again.

Rating and Recommendation: I’m giving My Heart Belongs in Ruby City, Idaho 5 stars. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, Christian comedy, or is looking for a delightful summer read.

~I received a copy from the publisher through Netgalley. All thoughts are my own. I was not compensated for this review.

Giveaway Details: 

Susanne Dietze is hosting a giveaway on her page. Giveaway ends on May 5th at 11:59 pm. Winner to be announced on Susanne’s page.

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Posted in Book Reviews

GIVEAWAY and Book Review: Anchor in the Storm by Sarah Sundin

83.jpgOne Plucky Female Pharmacist + One High-Society Naval Officer = Romance–and Danger

For plucky Lillian Avery, America’s entry into World War Ii means a chance to prove herself as a pharmacist in Boston. The challenges of her new job energize her. But society boy Ensign Archer Vandenberg’s attentions only annoy–even if he is her brother’s best friend.

During the darkest days of the war, Arch’s destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves–and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions for sedatives Lillian has filled? The two work together to answer that question, but can Arch ever earn Lillian’s trust and affection?

Sarah Sundin brings World War Ii to life, offering readers an intense experience they won’t soon forget.

What I Loved: I’ve said this before when reviewing a Sundin novel and it’s no less true today. I loved it all! But for your sake, I’ll try to be a little more detailed in my gushing. 😉
Arch and Lillian couldn’t have been more different and yet in their attempt to run, they run right into each other. Sigh. Once again, Sundin exercises her talents in crafting unique and humble characters. Characters that you easily fall in love with and root for. It was interesting to see Lillian’s struggles of acceptance into society as a cripple during her day and the reality of battle fatigue through Arch’s point of view.
I really enjoyed the mystery that was weaved into the story. While I had some theories along the way, I was never completely confident in my ideas and was able to fully enjoy watching the mystery unfold.
In the midst of a sweet romance and well-researched WWII history is a solid message on relying on Christ only. Lastly, everything wraps up with a surprising, edge-of-your-seat ending.

Rating and Recommendation: I highly recommend Anchor in the Storm to Christian Historical Fiction readers and WWII fiction fans. I’m giving it 5 stars.

Giveaway Details!! 
Sarah Sundin is hosting a giveaway this week in celebration of her new release, When Tides Turn, book 3 of Waves of Freedom. I’ll be reviewing When Tides Turn later this month, but for now I thought I would share her awesome giveaway with you.
The giveaway features some WWII/Navy inspired treasures. You can catch the entry form and package details on her blog. The giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and closes on March 19th. The winner will be announced on Sarah Sundin’s blog on the 20th.
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Posted in Book Reviews

GIVEAWAY and Book Review: Summer on Sunset Ridge by Sharlene MacLaren

13.jpgBrought up on a Quaker farm near Philadelphia at the brink of the Civil War, plainspoken Rebecca Albright is expected to be charitable, peace-loving, and submissive. However, those traits don’t always come naturally to the feisty abolitionist. Spirited and spunky, Rebecca’s chief ambition is to aid the Underground Railroad no matter the cost – until her path collides with slave-catcher Sheriff Clay Dalton who’s grimly fighting battles of his own. When tensions between the North and South escalate, the two find themselves propelled on a journey to discover just who God has called them to be and to determine whether their newfound friendship can stand up to a myriad of conflicts.

 

My Thoughts: From the beginning, I connected with Rebecca and Clay and was soon swept up in their story. I found the later half of the story a bit too predictable and the loose ends wrapped up a little too conveniently for my tastes. But I greatly appreciated the message MacLaren weaved into her story about how God works out all things for good. This theme kept coming up again and again and it was truly well done. I also liked how she brought to life the Quaker beliefs while not compromising anything. I had read a Quaker-based story some months back and found the message unbalanced. I applaud MacLaren on how she always brought the focus back to Christ, explaining that the Quaker beliefs were a lifestyle and not necessary for becoming a child of God. Overall this was a good story and I’m interested in seeing what happens next in the series.

Rating and Recommendation: I’m giving it 4 stars and recommend it to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction or Quaker-based stories.

~I received a copy from the publisher through Celebrate Lit. I was not required to give a favorable review. All thoughts are my own.

68About the Author: Sharlene MacLaren Born and raised in western Michigan, award-winning, bestselling author Sharlene MacLaren attended Spring Arbor University. After graduating, she traveled with a nationally touring Christian vocal ensemble, returning home to Spring Arbor to marry her husband, Cecil, whom she’d known since childhood. Together they raised two daughters. Now happily retired after teaching elementary school for 31 years, “Shar” enjoys reading, singing in the church choir and worship teams, traveling, and spending time with her husband, children, and grandchildren. Her novels include the contemporary romances Through Every Storm, Long Journey Home, and Tender Vow; the beloved Little Hickman Creek series (Loving Liza Jane, Sarah, My Beloved, Courting Emma, and  Christmas Comes to Little Hickman Creek, a novella), and three historic romance trilogies: The Daughters of Jacob Kane (Hannah Grace, Maggie Rose, and Abbie Ann); River of Hope (Livvie’s Song, Ellie’s Haven, andSofia’s Secret); Tennessee Dreams:  Heart of Mercy, Threads of Joy, and Gift of Grace.

Giveaway Details: 
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To celebrate Sharlene’s tour, Whitaker House is giving away:

Grand Prize

Brown and tan fashion purse with cross, multiple interior and exterior pocketsand

and

Five Sharlene MacLaren titles: Summer on Sunset Ridge (Forever Freedom #1); Heart of Mercy (Tennessee Dreams #1); Livvie’s Song (River of Hope #1); Hannah Grace (Daughters of Jacob Kane #1); Loving Liza Jane (Little Hickman Creek #1)

Second Prize

“Keepers of the Light” Orange/Cinnamon/Clove candle from www.acheerfulgiver.com and

Summer on Sunset Ridge

Third Prize

Summer on Sunset Ridge

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post to earn 9 extra entries in the giveaway!

https://promosimple.com/ps/af21

Check out what others are saying about Summer on Sunset Ridge: 

Blog Stops

January 19: Reading Is My SuperPower

January 19: Giveaway Lady

January 19: A Reader’s Brain

January 20: Books. Books. And More Books.

January 20: The Power of Words

January 21: Bigreadersite

January 21: just the write escape

January 22: Moments Dipped in Ink

January 22: For The Love of Books

January 23: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

January 23: Genesis 5020

January 24: Pause for Tales

January 24: His Grace is Sufficient

January 25:  Book by Book

January 25: A Simple Life, really?!

January 26: A Greater Yes

January 26: Connie’s History Classroom

January 26: A Baker’s Perspective

January 27: Christian Author: A.M. Heath

January 27: Splashes of Joy

January 28: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

January 28: Christian Bookaholic

January 28: History, Mystery & Faith

January 29: Stuff & Nonsense

January 29: Bibliophile Reviews

January 30: cherylbbookblog

January 30: Daysong Reflections

January 31: Blossoms and Blessings

January 31: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

February 1: Reader’s cozy corner

February 1: Rhonda’s Doings

Posted in About the Book

Contest and Giveaway: Williams Cranberry Cake Recipe Search

untitledAs a fiction author, I have the tendency to make stuff up. People are normally grateful when I do. In fact, I even get paid for it. 😉

But sometimes making stuff up can come back to bite you in the rear. And this is one of those times.

In my novel, my Union hero, Ralph Williams, mentions a beloved family recipe. Not any recipe but a cranberry cake recipe that is passed down only through marriage and only served on Christmas and his birthday. The truth is, I needed SOMETHING to fill this role and reached for the first thing that came to mind. Apparently, I made it so memorable that readers asked for a copy of the recipe.

Oops! I sorta don’t have one.

This now infamous cranberry cake recipe made its way into the pages of Out of the Ashes and will become even more memorable since I had developed an entire scene around this delicious cake…this fictional cake that never even existed.

But I hear my readers loud and clear. They want the Williams family recipe and I want to give it to them. But first I want you to help me find it. I’ve searched the web for cranberry cake recipes and the options are limitless. So to narrow down my choices, I’m asking that YOU send in a recipe that YOU have baked. Keep reading to learn more about my Williams Cranberry Cake Recipe Contest!

PRIZE: I’ll be giving away a cake recipe book to TWO different winners. The winning recipe will receive a prize and I’ll also select one more winner at random so everyone has a chance to win even if I don’t like your cake. 😉

Contest Rules: Submit only ONE recipe per person. Multiple bakers can submit recipes from a single household as long as the baker is tall enough to actually turn the dials on the stove. 😉

In order to cut down on the abundance of Google recipes thrown at me, I’m asking that you first try the recipe before submitting it to me. Please send along a picture of the finished product in your home not the one from the Google search. Consider adding a copy of one of my books in the background(ebook or paperback, whatever is handy!), or your little helpers if you’re baking with kids, take a selfie with the cake, etc. Go crazy, have fun! *If for some reason, you’re unable to share an original picture please just let me know. I’d love to still have you play along.

Where to Enter: I’ll have 2 places where you can submit your entry.
Email  with the heading Williams Cranberry Cake Recipe Entry.
Or post in the comments section on the Contest post pinned to the top of my Facebook page. Don’t forget to leave your email address if you post your entry on Facebook.

Other Details: I’ll collect all entries and share them on the Contest Page right here on my blog.

Contest is open January 16, 2017 – February 6, 2017
Winner announced on Ralph’s Birthday: February 22
*Please submit entries by February 6th so I will have ample time to bake them.

Tips: Here are some tips to help you find what I’m looking for.

Dried cranberries are encouraged but not mandatory.

I didn’t picture the Williams Cranberry cake as a cake with icing. I pictured it either with nothing on top or possibly with powder sugar or a light glaze. Nothing was my most common idea but I’m not opposed to considering a sugar or glaze topping.

You do NOT have to submit an original recipe. Feel free to Google or Pinterest search!

Feel free to ask any questions if something isn’t clear!!

Fine Print: Contest and Giveaway are the responsibility of me and not Facebook or WordPress. Open to continental US residents only. There will be two different winners. One will be chosen by me but not in any way influenced by my relationship to the contestant. The other winner will be selected at random.

Posted in Book Reviews

GIEVEAWAY and Book Review: Healing of the Heart by Loree Lough

33Ruby McCoy is haunted by her father’s sins….

When Ruby McCoy arrives in Fairplay, her ornate carriage is followed by an entourage who heft steamer trunks, hatboxes, and traveling bags into the hotel…where she has booked the entire second floor. Upon her notorious gangster father’s death, the now–wealthy Ruby, hiding under her mother’s maiden name, set out to right her father’s wrongs. Ruby is determined to spend every penny of the inherited “blood money” on those who paid the price for her father’s crimes.

Sheriff Rex Truett doesn’t trust Ruby and doesn’t care who knows it. The keeper of Fairplay’s law and order makes it his business to find out why a stranger—especially a beautiful, spoiled, rich, female stranger—would set up businesses, donate to schools, hire workmen to rebuild houses, and provide access to the best medical care. But when a typhoid epidemic sweeps through the city, he is forced to reconsider.

Will Rex blame Ruby for her father’s sins? Or will he accept the possibility that she is trying to create—and feel—the peace her father stole?

 

My Review: This unique plot intrigued me and I knew I had to pick up Healing of the Heart. Ruby is determined to help those that her father had hurt on his lifelong crime spree. No matter how good she appears, Sheriff Rex is skeptical of her. I found Ruby McCoy to be a role model. She was benevolent and willing to serve others with her own time and hands despite her flashy upbringing. There was a cast of colorful characters involved that helped bring this rustic setting to life. I did struggle with the lack of spark between Ruby and Rex. And I thought that the plot moved at a slower pace than I had expected. But I think fans of Tracie Peterson will enjoy this good-hearted novel.

~I received a copy from Celebrate Lit. I was not compensated for this review. All thoughts are my own.

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GIVEAWAY: In honor of her tour, Loree is giving away her books: Secrets on Sterling Street series, Prevailing Love (3 in 1), Pricilla Hires a Husband, Lone Wolf, and Emma’s Orphans, a KJVER Study Bible, and an Abba pillar candle in a wicker basket! Click the link below to enter; be sure to comment on this post to claim your nine bonus entries for this giveaway! https://promosimple.com/ps/a81c

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A prolific writer, Loree Lough has 108 books, 68 short stories, and more than 2,500 articles in print. Her novels have earned dozens of industry and Reader’s Choice awards. A frequent guest speaker for writers’ organizations, book clubs, private and government institutions, corporations, and college and high school writing programs, Loree and her husband, Larry, divide their time between a home in the Baltimore suburbs and a cabin in the Allegheny Mountains.

Her books have over 3700 ratings on Goodreads with the first two books in The Secrets of Sterling Street series, Currency of the Heartand Guardians of the Heart receiving multiple four and five star reviews on book review and retail sites.

 

But I’m not the only one with an opinion! See what others are saying on the blog tour:
Blog Stops

November 22: Bibliophile Reviews

November 22: Jeanette’s Thoughts

November 23: Neverending Stories

November 23: Lane Hill House

November 24: Reviewing Novels Online

November 24: Christian Bookaholic

November 25: Christian Author: A.M. Heath

November 25: Redeemed Hope Dweller

November 26: A Simple Life, really?!

November 26: Moments Dipped in Ink

November 27: inklings and notions

November 27: Splashes of Joy

November 28: Ashley’s Bookshelf

November 28: Daysong Reflections

November 29: Black ‘n Gold Girl’s Book Spot

November 29: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

November 30: Bigreadersite

November 30: Singing Librarian Books

December 1: Pause for Tales

December 1: Smiling Book Reviews

December 2: A Greater Yes

December 2: Genesis 5020

December 3: Reader’s cozy corner

December 4: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

December 4: Karen Sue Hadley

December 5: A Baker’s Perspective

December 5: Rhonda’s Doings

Posted in Book Reviews

Book Review and GIVEAWAY: Buying Love by Toni Shiloh

16Will money ruin everything?

Nina Warrenton is ready for the next step in her life plan—marriage, but no one has proposed. Taking matters into her hand, she places an ad in the newspaper hoping to entice a willing stranger. But when she begins to fall for the small-town chef, she realizes how much she wants him to love her and not her money.

Dwight Williams needs fast cash to save the family restaurant. When he sees Nina’s monetary offer for a husband, he goes for it. He’s determined to save the legacy his dad left him, but can he let it go to prove his love for her?

Can Nina and Dwight find true love, once money has entered the equation?

What I Loved: I’ve always been a sucker for a mail-order bride type of story. In Buying Love, Toni explores the idea of putting in an ad for a husband in a contemporary setting. From page one, she had me smiling…and hungry. Dwight co-owns a family restaurant and the talk about food will keep your mouth watering while the story keeps you engaged. The characters are fun and REAL. And the messages in the book: discovering and following God’s plan for your life and finding your worth in Christ is comforting and applicable.
Buying Love was a smooth story, just perfect for curling up with on a fall day. I’m looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

Rating and Recommendation: I recommend Buying Love to anyone who enjoys Christian Contemporary Fiction and I am giving it 5 stars.

~I received a copy from Celebrate Lit. I was not compensated for this review. All thoughts are my own.

GIVEAWAY: Toni Shiloh is hosting a giveaway for a $50 Amazon Giftcard in celebration of her new release. Follow the link to enter.

Here’s a quick word from the author. I love the way she describes her purpose here and just had to share it with you! 

Hi, Reader Friends!! I’m so excited to be here at Celebrate Lit for the kick off of my new release, Buying Love. I wrote this book last year for National November Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). In one month, I managed to write a little over 50,000 words. However, that’s not why this book holds a special place in my heart. No, it’s the message in the story.

Nina Warrenton has struggled with being alone in life. Thus, she decides to take matters into her own hand and places an ad for a husband, complete with a monetary offer. What seemed like an intelligent and simplistic way to get a husband, soon proves to have a multitude of complications. Not only that, but Nina has to discover who God is in her life and the body of Christ fits into that.

Y’all have you ever felt alone in a room full of people? Or felt isolated? Or maybe you’re an orphan…whatever your background, I hope that this book shows you that God loves you. He loves you so much, He’s adopted you into the body of Christ. So if you’re a believer, we’re family. As a person who always wanted a friend and lots of family, that’s music to my soul. It’s what I wanted Nina to discover and what I hope the readers discover.

Ephesians 1:4-6, “According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the beloved” (KJV).

Posted in About the Book

A New Adventure!

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Nothing sums it up quite like the image above. It is time to start a new adventure!! Don’t worry, I’m still working on the old adventure. 😉 But the Lord has trumped my plans and has led me to start a new series while still working on the Ancient Words Series. You can read more about the story behind this decision here.

After working in total secrecy for about two months, I’m prepared to give you all those yummy details your heart desires. There’s a giveaway also in progress and you’ll find those details on the bottom of this page. But first, let’s talk about that title…

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Book One of the brand new series is titled, If Only it were Yesterday. This story is loosely inspired by Alice in Wonderland. *The above graphic is NOT the official book cover.

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It’s funny how fast things can change. When I officially began If Only it were Yesterday, it was, believe it or not, a stand alone story. I was brainstorming for an idea for a new Christmas short story when I was inspired by a plot that became the second novel in the series. Twelve hours later, I had two more stories to add to the collection, creating A Season Passed.
Each story in A Season Passed carries four distinct connections.
One: Each story is set in one of the seasons: Fall, Winter, Spring, or Summer. If Only it were Yesterday starts us off in the Fall.
Two: The plot of each story takes place in two different periods of time. Each plot is crafted with both the character’s present and past intertwined together.
Three: For the first time, I’ll be writing this series using only ONE point of view character per book!! If you’ve been following the Ancient Words Series you’ll know that this is big news.
Four: Each story is a loose retelling of one of my favorite Disney movies. As mentioned, If Only it were Yesterday is inspired by Alice in Wonderland but I’m not ready to reveal the other three just yet.
Are you excited yet? Now let’s talk plot!

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In If Only it were Yesterday, Liz Cooke has a problem with reality. Several problems, actually. Disheartened with the condition of society, she daydreams about a simpler time when things made sense and problems were easily erased. But when Liz falls asleep and dreams she has traveled back in time, will she find things to be as easy as she had imagined?

Now for the details…

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While the other stories in the series will flash back to a real time in the character’s history, Liz’s story is a little more unique in that her flashback takes place in a dream. She dreams she time travels to 1885.

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Here’s a quick look at Liz Cooke. I’m still working on the official model but you’ll find her likeness in the picture above that I snagged from Pinterest. I don’t own the picture or know the lovely lady, but her long brown hair, loose curls, and pretty smile help inspire the image I have in mind for Liz.

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Liz and I both agree that one of the perks of “living” in two different eras is having two different suitors to choose from. 😉 Again, I don’t own these fellas but they do inspire my characters. Although, I picture Scott with lighter hair, that easy-going smile of his is spot on.

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I wanted to increase the Alice in Wonderland connection by naming my new fictional town after the story’s author. As it turns out Carroll is a pen name so I allowed readers attending the FB party to vote between Carroll, TN and Dodgson, TN (the author’s real last name).

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And last but not least, the official tagline of If Only it were Yesterday. I hope you’re as excited as I am about the new project. You’ll be hearing news about my progress as well as the progress on my upcoming release, Out of the Ashes.

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Giveaway:
I’m giving away paperback copies of my first two novels, Where Can I Flee and In the Shadow of Thy Wings, a $5 Christian Book gift card, and some of my favorite tea in celebration of this new adventure. You can enter the giveaway through one or more of the options below. *Giveaway is open to continental U.S. residents only and closes on October 6 at midnight. Thanks SO much for stopping by!

How to enter the giveaway:
1  Comment below. I’d love to hear your excitement about the new series.
2  Share this blog post. Grab an entry for sharing on different social media platforms. Just comment below and let me know how many times to add your name in the bowl.
3  Follow me on Facebook. Don’t forget to tell me about it.
4  Follow this blog page and tell me about it in the comments.
*Don’t forget to add your email address so I know how to contact you if you’re the winner.

 

Posted in Book Reviews

GIVEAWAY and Review: Family Christian Store

I was given a $25 gift card to Family Christian in exchange for an honest review about my shopping experience. The great news is that they’re giving away another gift card to one of my readers!! You’ll find a Rafflecopter giveaway at the bottom of the page.

First of all, let’s talk SUMMER SALE!!! Family Christian has a HUGE BOGO half off on several of their products. You’re allowed to mix and match products from different departments. Just look for the sunflower while you’re shopping!
Sale is going on now through August 25th so shop your local store or Family Christian online. 

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Do you wanna peek into my shopping cart? 😉 I’ll show you what I found. I picked up Open Heaven/ River Wild Hillsong cd, the For I Know the Plans coloring book for my mom, and My Favorite KJV Verse to Color coloring book for myself.

My Shopping Experience: The site was easy to shop and the sale items were clearly marked. I found the shipping prices to be VERY reasonable. Everything shipped out quickly. But one of my favorite things about Family Christian is their commitment to giving back. They’re a non-profit company, which means instead of taking and keeping  a healthy profit, they hand out. So it’s shopping with a purpose and that’s something that I can stand behind.

Product Recommendations:
Whether you’re road tripping, vacationing with the family, lounging on the beach or staying close to home, Family Christian has you covered! Here are some items we suggest you check out this summer:

Bible: Journaling Bibles
Description: Select journaling Bibles are now 30% off through August 25! Ignite a renewed passion for exploring God’s Word, whether you’re jotting down notes from a church sermon or recording prayer requests from small group—you’ll have all the space you need. And many of our journaling Bibles are filled with illustrations to inspire and get you started. Choose from 26 styles, and save now!

Book: Traces of Guilt by Dee Henderson
Description: When Evie Blackwell arrives in Carin, Illinois, it’s to help launch a new task force dedicated to reexamining two of the city’s unsolved crimes. As she dives into evidence and develops new leads, she unearths a surprising connection . . . possibly a third cold case. She’s determined to solve them before she leaves town, and Sheriff Gabriel Thane and his family will be key to those answers. Book #1 of the Evie Blackwell Cold Case series.

Music: H A R D L O V E by NEEDTOBREATHE (available July 15)
Description: This sixth studio album from NEEDTOBREATE finds the group reflecting on the tumultuous seasons behind their recent albums, Rivers In the Wasteland and The Reckoning, and enjoying extraordinary success while experiencing personal conflict. “We were in a dark place when we made the last record, but to me this album is mostly a story of redemption,” Bear Rinehart said. H A R D L O V E delves into the world of electronic effects and instrumentation, resulting in a sublimely crafted and expansive sound that reflects the band’s unforgettable live show. Includes lead singles “Happiness” and “Money & Fame.”

Kids’ Items: Summer Reading Club
Description: Encourage kids 12 years and younger to take their reading to new heights by joining our Summer Reading Club. When they read six books, we’ll give them a free book of their choice. Jump start their reading now with our Buy 1, Get 1 50% Off sale on all Kids’ Books! The Club is going on now and ends August 25, so get them reading! Link to learn more.

New Product Line: Active Faith
* We’re thrilled to be the exclusive retail partner for Active Faith Sports! Formed by a group of Christian athletes, Active Faith offers apparel with Christian-inspired designs and messages, encouraging you to share your faith whether you’re on the court, out for a jog or running errands around town.

About Christian Family:
* Family Christian is a Christian retailer, operating in 250 stores across the country. They are committed to helping you find, grow, share and celebrate your faith through a wide selection of Christian books, music, Bibles, DVDs, gifts and more.
* When you shop with Family Christian, your purchases support their efforts to unite with ministries that are helping children and families in need around the world.

Giveaway Details:
Enter the giveaway through the Rafflecopter link below. Giveaway is open from Aug 16 to Aug 23 at 12 am.
The winner will be announced here on the blog Aug 23.
Rafflecopter Link.
Giveaway Rules: Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.
“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.