Saturday, February 27, 2021

Celebrate Lit Presents: Catching Hope by Kathy Cassel

 

About the Book

Book:  Catching Hope

Author: Kathy Cassel

Genre: Middle-grade fiction, action/suspense

Release date: February 1, 2021

Catching Hope—a pursuit fraught with danger.

Newly adopted Lexi Michaels is taking her first real vacation as she, twin brother Levi, adoptive brother Chad, and new cousin Jen head to Haiti where their dad, a pediatrician, will be volunteering in an island clinic. But who is the man who displays such hatred for the Michaels when they arrive at their resort? Is an attempted burglary as random as it appears? Will Jen ever accept the newcomers to the family? When the four teens set out to explore Haiti’s sights and history on their own, an unexpected encounter and natural disaster plunge them into adventure and danger. With their very survival at stake, can the four teens work together or will Lexi’s dream of a “forever family” end in tragedy?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Kathy Cassel lives in the Florida panhandle with her husband and four of their eight children, five of whom are adopted. She is a motorcycle rider, scuba diver, and loves spending time with her family. Her debut novel, Freerunner, was published by Elk Lake Publishing, Inc. in 2019.

 

 

More from Kathy

My Experience with Haiti

 

Prior to the 2010 catastrophic 7.0 magnitude earthquake that caused immense damage to the country of Haiti, many people would not have been able to tell you that Haiti and the Dominican Republic share the island of Hispaniola just a two hour flight from Miami.

I knew where it was because our family had adopted a child from Haiti in 1997. At the time the earthquake took place, my husband and I were in the process of adopting twins from a different orphanage in Port au Prince Haiti. It had been over three years and our adoption was not yet complete. During those three years I visited the twins at the orphanage five times. Other family members went with me on some of those trips, and at one point, all of our children still living at home went to visit the orphanage.

This was an eye opening experience for my family. In fact, I volunteered us to do the daily wash. That meant hand washing clothes and sheets for 135 orphans using large metal tubs and harsh soap, then rinsing the clothes in other tubs before hand wringing them and hanging them on clotheslines. Once home, my children no longer complained about unloading the dryer!

Cooking was done in large pots over open fires and mainly consisted of rice and beans, or red sauce over rice. The cooks originally prepared the food in a wooden shack, but more than once one of them would get so hot she’d pass out, so an outdoor area was set up for food preparation.

After the earthquake, there was a mountain of paperwork to be done to get refugee status for children in the orphanages who had families waiting for them. Finally the children were brought to the United States, although some of the orphans went to other countries too, to be united with their forever families. Sadly, many were held in the airport for days before being released. For our family, the long wait was over January 25, 2010. Now our family is complete with three birth children and five adopted children, three of whom are from Haiti.

Some of the places mentioned in the book resemble real places in Haiti, although they have been fictionalized. I hope you will not only read Catching Hope, but will also take time to learn more about the country of Haiti.

Blog Stops

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, February 25

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, February 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 27

For the Love of Literature, February 28 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, March 1

Inklings and notions, March 2

For Him and My Family, March 3

Wishful Endings, March 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, March 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 5

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, March 6

Artistic Nobody, March 7 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 8

deb’s Book Review, March 9

Simple Harvest Reads, March 10 (Author Interview)

Lots of Helpers, March 10

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kathy is giving away the grand prize of a $40 Books-A-Million Gift Card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1089e/catching-hope-celebration-tour-giveaway

Friday, February 26, 2021

Celebrate Lit Presents: Lady Wynwood’s Spies 1: Archer by Camille Elliot

 

Archer

About the Book

Book:  Lady Wynwood’s Spies 1: Archer

Author: Camille Elliot

Genre: Christian Historical Romantic Suspense

Release date: December 8, 2020

Archer cover

A Christian Regency Romantic Adventure serial novel with a supernatural twist

Lady Wynwood’s Spies volume 1

She met him again by shooting him.

Part one in a Christian Regency Romantic Adventure epic serial novel with a supernatural twist. After four seasons and unmarried because she is taller than most of her dance partners, Miss Phoebe Sauber receives the shocking news that she is being callously banished from her father’s estate because he is remarrying. Feeling betrayed by her father and by God, and wanting to escape her family’s presence, she attends an archery tournament with her friends.

But her perfect aim fails her, and her arrow hits a piece of paper held by Mr. Michael Coulton-Jones, whom she hasn’t seen much in society in several years. But strangely, her arrow tears a section of the paper with a partial symbol that looks eerily familiar to her.

He met her again while searching for a killer.

Michael had quit his work as a spy for the Foreign Office when his brother was poisoned. His search for the murderer leads him to Apothecary Jack, a criminal underworld leader with a penchant for poisons, who is gathering a powerful army through an alchemical potion that can give men supernatural strength.

But his path unexpectedly crosses again with Miss Sauber, who saves him from a trap laid by Jack. She and her Aunt Laura, Lady Wynwood, have found a vital connection to Apothecary Jack and the mysterious group he works for.

Now Michael, who had vowed to never again allow civilians to come to harm, must work with a nobleman keeping dangerous secrets, a human lie detector, a chemist, a fellow former spy, and the one woman he’s never allowed himself to get close to.

And it is only this ragtag group that stands against a traitorous organization that could enable Napoleon to conquer the world.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

CamyTang_highres  

Camy writes Christian contemporary romance and romantic suspense as Camy Tang and Regency romance as USA Today bestselling author Camille Elliot. She lives in San Jose, California, with her engineer husband and rambunctious dog. She was a staff worker for her church youth group for over 20 years and she currently plays on one of the Sunday worship teams. Visit her websites at http://www.camytang.com/ and http://www.camilleelliot.com/ to read free short stories and subscribe to her quarterly newsletter.

 

More from Camy

I love Regency romances! I started reading them when I was 13 years old and haven’t stopped since.

There’s something about the Regency time period and culture that’s glamorous and decadent and the epitome of elegance. The resplendent dresses! The brooding, romantic Lord Byron and the distinguished Beau Brummell! Dashing naval captains and army lieutenants, glittering ballrooms and winsome debutantes!

The flip side of my personality loves romantic suspense and action adventure. I love seeing strong women face danger with courage and smarts, and strong men willing to do anything to protect their loved ones and fight for justice.

So, basically, the Lady Wynwood’s Spies series grew out of my desire to see Mission: Impossible in the Regency era!

My Regency “IMF” team is brought together when my spinster heroine, a botanist and a skilled archer, discovers that her late uncle had ties to a mysterious group. She goes to her aunt’s best friend, a gentleman who has secretly been a spy for decades, and he forms his team of ex-agents and uniquely gifted civilians to battle this group of alchemists who want to ensure that Napoleon wins the war with England. (Cue the Mission: Impossible theme music!)

I’ve also structured the series a little differently. It’s a very long serial novel, similar to a Japanese manga or light novel series, with 12 volumes that each have a completed story arc, but the main plot isn’t resolved until the end.

I hope you’ll join me on this epic Regency romantic adventure!

Blog Stops

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 15

CarpeDiem, February 15

Hebrews 12 Endurance, February 16

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, February 16

Artistic Nobody, February 17 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Inside the Wong Mind, February 17

Through the Fire Blogs, February 18

Mia Reads, February 18

Sara Jane Jacobs, February 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 19

HookMeInABook, February 19

Betti Mace, February 20

Inklings and notions, February 20

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 21

Texas Book-aholic, February 21

Connie’s History Classroom, February 22

The Artist Librarian, February 22

Pause for Tales, February 22

For Him and My Family, February 23

Labor Not in Vain, February 23

deb’s Book Review, February 24

Fiction Book Lover, February 24 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 25

Just Your Average reviews, February 25

Simple Harvest Reads, February 25 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 26

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 26

Blossoms and Blessings, February 27

Britt Reads Fiction, February 27

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, February 28

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, February 28

Blogging With Carol, February 28

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Camy is giving away the grand prize of a 1-year subscription to Kindle Unlimited!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1074a/lady-wynwood-s-spies-1-archer-celebration-tour-giveaway

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Celebrate Lit Presents: The Lady in Residence by Allison Pittman

 

About the Book

Book:  The Lady in Residence

Author: Allison Pittman

Genre: Christian Historical

Release date: February 2021

Can a Legacy of Sadness be Broken at the Menger Hotel?

Visit historic American landmarks through the Doors to the Past series. History and today collide in stories full of mystery, intrigue, faith, and romance.

Young widow Hedda Krause checks into the Menger Hotel in 1915 with a trunk full of dresses, a case full of jewels, and enough cash to pay for a two-month stay, which she hopes will be long enough to meet, charm, and attach herself to a new, rich husband. Her plans are derailed when a ghostly apparition lures her into a long, dark hallway, and Hedda returns to her room to find her precious jewelry has been stolen. She falls immediately under a cloud of suspicion with her haunting tale, but true ghost enthusiasts bring her expensive pieces of jewelry in an attempt to lure the ghost to appear again.

In 2017, Dini Blackstone is a fifth-generation magician, who performs at private parties, but she also gives ghost walk tours, narrating the more tragic historical events of San Antonio with familial affection. Above all, her favorite is the tale of Hedda Krause who, in Dini’s estimation, succeeded in perpetrating the world’s longest con, dying old and wealthy from her ghost story. But then Dini meets Quinn Carmichael, great-great-grandson of the detective who originally investigated Hedda’s case, who’s come to the Alamo City with a box full of clues that might lead to Hedda’s exoneration. Can Dini see another side of the story that is worthy of God’s grace?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Allison Pittman is the author of more than a dozen critically acclaimed novels and a four-time Christy finalist—twice for her Sister Wife series, once for All for a Story from her take on the Roaring Twenties and most recently for the critically acclaimed The Seamstress which takes a cameo character from the Dickens’ classic A Tale of Two Cities and flourishes her to life amidst the French Revolution. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, blissfully sharing an empty nest with her husband, Mike. Connect with her on Facebook (Allison Pittman Author), Twitter (@allisonkpittman) or her website, allisonkpittman.com.

 

More from Allison

From Haunting to Healing: How Stories Bring New Life to Old Ghosts

If you really think about it, every story is a ghost story. Not the floating spirits of the dearly departed kind, not bumps in the night or mysterious howling in the darkness—but the best stories come from examining a haunted heart. Memories that pursue the present.

A few years ago I took the walking tour of haunted San Antonio. It was a lark, a fun tourist-y thing to do with some visiting friends. I’m not a believer in ghosts, but I am a collector of stories. The tour opens at the Alamo—sacred ground of slain soldiers. The second stop is the Menger Hotel, listed as one of the most haunted hotels in the United States by those who measure and evaluate such things. And while the tour guide waxed on about the guests’ litany of haunted experiences (including Teddy Roosevelt raging through the lobby), my mind stuck with the story of Sallie White. Sallie White is the Menger Hotel’s most famous ghost—a chambermaid whose apparition is reported to be seen walking the halls, towels draped over her arm, or to be heard as an efficient two-rap knock on your door late at night. My mind, however, didn’t dwell on Sallie the ghost, but Sallie the woman—just a normal, hard-working, poor woman, murdered in the street by a man who claimed to love her. But for that, she would have passed into history unknown. Instead, her story is told every night as strangers gather on the very sidewalk where the crime took place.

Years after first hearing the story of Sallie white, I stayed in the Menger for a few days to gather details for The Lady in Residence. I booked what they call a “Petite” room—meaning it is a room that maintains its original structure. Read: tiny. Exposed pipes, creaky wooden floors, antique furniture—the only update, the bathroom fixtures. As it turned out, my room was directly above the place where Sallie White was murdered. One night I pressed my ear against the glass and listened to the ghost tour guide tell her story. The next morning, I stood in the exact spot with a fancy Starbucks drink, thinking about her. She lives on, not because people claim to see her walking and hear her knocking in the dead of night, but because she is a woman remembered.

So, is that beautiful? Is it ghoulish? Maybe it’s both, but when I was given the chance to write a story set in and around the Menger Hotel, I was determined to make Sallie White’s story a part of it. I didn’t want to write her story—that would have required embellishment beyond those few historic, factual tid-bits that such a woman left behind. Sallie White didn’t have correspondence to catalog or a journal to give us insight to her thoughts. Instead, I wanted to tell it to readers everywhere who might never make it to San Antonio to hear it for themselves. When you read The Lady in Residence, you are going to hear the true story of Sallie White, all of it taken from a newspaper account of the time. And then, I did what all historical writers do…I folded it into my own tale and folded that tale into another.

That’s really the joy of writing a split-time novel—being able to draw back and shoot a narrative-arrow straight through the hearts of two stories, threading them together, to bring a haunting to a place of healing.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 23

Artistic Nobody, February 23 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Fiction Aficionado, February 24

For the Love of Literature, February 24

Where Faith and Books Meet, February 24

Texas Book-aholic, February 25

Mia Reads Blog, February 25

Connie’s History Classroom, February 26

Inspiration Clothesline, February 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 27

Books I’ve Read, February 27

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 28

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, February 28

Remembrancy, March 1

Bigreadersite, March 1

For Him and My Family, March 2

Hallie Reads, March 2

deb’s Book Review, March 3

Blogging With Carol, March 3

By The Book, March 4

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 4

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 5

The Write Escape, March 5

Life of Literature, March 6

Inklings and notions, March 6

Godly Book Reviews, March 7

Vicky Sluiter, March 7

To Everything There is A Season, March 8

Pause for Tales, March 8

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Allison is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of The Lady in Residence!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1086e/the-lady-in-residence-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours Presents: A Side of Murder (A Cape Cod Foodie Mystery) by Amy Pershing


A Side of Murder (A Cape Cod Foodie Mystery)
by Amy Pershing

About A Side of Murder 


A Side of Murder (A Cape Cod Foodie Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Berkley (February 23, 2021)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
ISBN-10: 0593199146
ISBN-13: 978-0593199145
Digital ASIN: B087PL9HHF

Beautiful Cape Cod, Massachusetts, is known for seafood, sand, surf, and, now…murder.

 

Samantha Barnes was always a foodie. And when the CIA (that’s the Culinary Institute of America) came calling, she happily traded in Cape Cod for the Big Apple. But then the rising young chef’s clash with another chef (her ex!) boils over and goes viral. So when Sam inherits a house on the Cape and lands a job writing restaurant reviews, it seems like the perfect pairing. What could go wrong? Well, as it turns out, a lot.

 

The dilapidated house comes with an enormous puppy. Her new boss is, well, bossy. And the town’s harbor master is none other than her first love. Nonetheless, Sam’s looking forward to reviewing the Bayview Grill—and indeed the seafood chowder is divine. But the body in the pond outside the eatery was not on the menu. Sam is certain this is murder. But as she begins to stir the pot, is she creating a recipe for her own untimely demise?

 

About Amy Pershing

Amy Pershing is a lifelong mystery lover and wordsmith who spent every summer of her childhood on Cape Cod. In her previous incarnations she was an assistant editor at Viking Penguin, a restaurant reviewer for Playbill magazine’s Restaurant Reporter, and a journalist at the Rome (Italy) Daily American before eventually going on to lead employee communications at a global bank. A few years ago (with the final college tuition bill paid), she waved goodbye to Wall Street in order to write full time (and spend more time sailing on Cape Cod!). A Side of Murder is the first book in the Cape Cod Foodie mystery series featuring Samantha Barnes, a disgraced but resilient ex-chef and the world’s most reluctant YouTube star. While Sam tries to balance her new job as the local paper’s “Cape Cod Foodie” with her complicated love life, a posse of just-slightly-odd friends, a falling-down house and a ginormous puppy, she also discovers a new talent – a propensity for falling over dead bodies … and for solving crime.

Website:  https://amypershingauthor.com/

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

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amypershingauthor/?hl=en

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/20632873.Amy_Pershing

Purchase Links:

AmazonBarnes & NobleBookshop.orgBooks A MillionIndieboundTargetHudson BooksellersPowells

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS

February 23 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

February 23 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

February 24 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

February 25 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST

February 25 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

February 26 – I Read What You Write – CHARACTER GUEST POST

February 26 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

February 27 – Moonlight Rendezvous – REVIEW  

February 27 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

February 28 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

February 28 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

March 1 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

March 2 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

March 2 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

March 2 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

March 3 – Ruff Drafts – RECIPE

March 3 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

March 4 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

March 5 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

March 6 –  ebook addicts – SPOTLIGHT

March 7 – Diane Reviews Books – GUEST POST

March 8 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

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Celebrate Lit Presents: Dance with Me by : A.M. Heath

 

About the Book

Book:  Dance with Me

Author: A.M. Heath

Genre: Christian Historical Romance (1960s)

Release date: April 2019

Will a new partnership tear their worlds apart … or will it be the piece they never knew was missing?

In 1959, Arleen Thatcher and Neil Fox are fierce competitors on the dance floor, so they’re the least likely pair to enter a televised competition together. But when rivaling studio owners decide to team up, the two find a partnership they never thought possible.
Arleen’s reputation around town is reason enough for Neil to keep his distance from his new partner. But as Neil gets to know Arleen, he discovers a side of her few others have seen, one of dark family secrets and carefully-constructed facades.
God’s plan for their partnership may involve more than a single dance; it may be the key to the healing Arleen so desperately needs.

The Art of Love series is compiled of stand-alone novels where the characters tell their own stories and love means so much more than passion.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

 

Besides being an Indie Author, I’m a wife, mother of four, children’s Sunday School teacher, sweet tea drinker, history fanatic, romantic, bubbly, lover of broccoli, and a retired cake decorator who has a soft spot for Christmas trees, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.
What I’m not is a laundress (or at least not one who keeps up very well), a duster, tall, or patient in a doctor’s office.

 

More from A.M. Heath

Breathing Life Into A Novel

One of the common remarks I get from my readers is how they felt like they had been transported into the story. The characters felt like real people and the setting felt authentic. And that’s always a blessing to hear as an author!

But the question is how do I do it?

Well, I’ll let the cat out of the bag. Since I’m not big on heavy descriptions, I allow other features to weigh in and help create the setting. In a nutshell, “I’m just keeping it real” (as we used to say in the 90s). And there are 3 areas to focus in on, especially when working with a historical novel:

Common objects or daily habits

Names

Slang

 

Common Objects:

It’s all about those minor details. The everyday objects or habits that a character might have that will help create the setting and bring authenticity to it.

 

Here are a few items found in the 1950s that aren’t as common today:

Two-toned painted vehicles

Phones attached to the wall, with a cord, and a rotary dial

Jukeboxes

Soda shops

Records

Pull tab canned drinks

Clothes lines and ironing boards

 

Names:

I use the U.S. census to preview the top 1000 baby names in any given year starting in 1880. But I also make note when I run across a name that sounds modern but is found in a real historical document.

While I’m writing, I create a name bank so I have era approved names on hand to use for my secondary characters.

Here’s a preview of a name bank for characters set in the 1950s:

 

Female:

Jan

Tabitha

Mabel

Judy

Paula

Rita

 

Male:

Dennis

Gary

Marvin

Earl

Barry

Rodney

 

Slang:

I must admit, the slang is my absolute favorite. I browse slang for each era through online searches and history books. But my favorite place to collect phrases is directly from the source. Anytime I’m watching an old movie or TV show, I jot down phrases I heard and the year it was filmed. It doesn’t get anymore authentic than hearing it straight from the horse’s mouth.

While I’m writing, I’ll preview my list and create a smaller word bank of phrases that my characters are most likely to use, so I can remember to weave them into the story.

 

Here’s a look at some of the fun phrases:

Say, (use at the start of your sentence)

Call dibs

Don’t have a cow

Flick (movie)

Cool it

Righto

No sweat

Cloud 9

Teed off or sore (mad)

Burn rubber

Get bent

Dullsville

Dig it

Fellas

Doll

Gee

Neat

Swell

 

I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek into the 1950s. Dance With Me was a real neat novel to write. It’s set in 1959, so there’s a strong greaser vibe throughout the story. Believe me, I was on cloud 9 the entire time.

 

Now it’s your turn! Do you have a favorite era in history to read about?

Which one of these swell phrases will you dust off and use in normal conversation today? Lol You should definitely surprise someone with it, then tell me about it. It’s a load of fun. My kids get sore at me all the time for using “lame” phrases, but I must say that they have a wide lingo vocabulary whether they wanted it or not.

 

Happy Reading!

Blog Stops

Artistic Nobody, February 13 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Texas Book-aholic, February 14

deb’s Book Review, February 15

Connie’s History Classroom, February 16

Labor Not in Vain, February 17

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, February 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 18

Sara Jane Jacobs, February 19

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 20

Inklings and notions, February 21

For Him and My Family, February 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 23

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 24

Blossoms and Blessings, February 25

Rachael’s Inkwell, February 25

Blogging With Carol, February 26

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, A.M. is giving away the grand prize package of a multi-artist CD and a paperback copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/10747/dance-with-me-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

From This Moment by Kim Vogel Sawyer

 


Growing up in the foster care system, Jase Edgar always dreamed of one day starting his own family. But his fiancée's untimely death shattered his plans. Moving to Kansas and serving as a youth minister should be a fresh start, but he can't seem to set aside his doubts about God's goodness long enough to embrace his new life.

Newly-appointed church custodian, Lori Fowler is battling her own challenges. Her strained relationship with her father and her struggles with overeating convince her she's not worthy enough for love. When an Amish weaver enlists their help locating the owner of a ring found among the donated clothing she uses as fabric, Jase and Lori find themselves drawn to each other. But will they be able to release the past and move forward from this moment into a joyful future?

Amazon 

 

About The Author


 Award-winning, bestselling author Kim Vogel Sawyer told her kindergarten teacher that someday people would check out her book in the library. The little-girl dream came true in 2006 with the release of Waiting for Summer's Return. Kim's titles now exceed 1.5 million copies and are available in six different languages. A former elementary school teacher, she now enjoys a full-time writing and speaking ministry. Kim's passion lies in writing stories that point the reader to a deeper, more intimate relationship with God. When Kim isn't writing, you'll find her traveling with her retired military hubby, spoiling her granddarlings, petting the cats, quilting, or--as time allows--participating in community theater. You can learn more about Kim's writing and speaking ministries at her website, KimVogelSawyer.com

 

My Review

 



What a range of emotions here, but you feel God's presence in these people's lives. We are there when our young Pastor arrives in Kansas, having left his position in San Antonio, and his memories. Will this move be the answer to restoring his faith?

We watch as he is embraced by this congregation, and feel his pain, and wonder if he can move on from his devastating loss of his fiance?

We also meet some of the members of the congregation that welcome him, mainly Lori, who really likes him, and Kenzie who is struggling about returning to her Amish roots, and sharing the hope of salvation.

Jace is targeted to be the Youth Pastor, and we watch as he begins his duties, and thank goodness for the Head Pastor and his wife, I loved them!

Will an engagement ring be the catalyst to bring the forgiveness Jace is craving, or is it irrelevant?

I love how he is challenged throughout this book, and it quickly became a page turner for me, and once I finished I really wanted to stay here and go on with the lives of the people I now cared about!

I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Waterbrook and Multnomah, and was not required to give a positive review.

The Amish Quiltmaker's Unexpected Baby (The Amish Quiltmaker, #1) by Jennifer Beckstrand

 

In the first in an engaging new series, an Amish quiltmaker moves from Pennsylvania to a new settlement in Colorado, where adventure, challenges, and love are waiting . . .
 
Esther Zook is starting over after her father’s death, piecing together a new life with as much care as she puts into her intricate quilts. When her wayward sister abandons her baby, it throws all those plans for a fresh start asunder. Esther had accepted her status as an old maid—but a mother? And a single one, at that? Not that she hasn’t noticed Levi Kiem, the eligible young man who’s making repairs in her house. Yet he surely has no interest in Esther as anything other than a friend . . .
 
It’s true that Levi has plenty of marriage prospects. His dat has even offered to send him to Ohio to find a wife. Yet the more time he spends with Esther, the more intrigued he becomes. Feisty and independent, she’s nothing like the wife he once imagined for himself. Yet just as a quilt is crafted from contrasting cloth, they might find that together, they can create a family to cherish

 Amazon

 

About The Author


ennifer 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-one Amish romances, a historical Western, and the nonfiction book, Big Ideas. She and her husband have been married for thirty-five years, and she has six children and eight adorable grandchildren, whom she spoils rotten.

Website 

 

My Review


Jennifer Beckstrand has done it again, written a book filled with so much emotion.
She writes a different type of Amish story, and this one includes lots of friends and family.
There is jealousy, anger, love, and lots of compassion. At times I wanted to shake Esther, she was so kind and Ivy is such a spoiled brat, but keep reading as the reason unfold, and no, I couldn’t imagine what happened.
I also couldn’t imagine a mother, and I know it does happen, abandoning her baby, and then her sister not knowing how to take care of one.
There are some very funny moments, and you will be chuckling out loud, and the mind pictures are hilarious!
I am so glad that this is the beginning of a new series, and I can’t wait for the next book!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Keningston, and was not required to give a positive review.

Jennifer Beckstrand has done it again, written a book filled with so much emotion.
She writes a different type of Amish story, and this one includes lots of friends and family.
There is jealousy, anger, love, and lots of compassion. At times I wanted to shake Esther, she was so kind and Ivy is such a spoiled brat, but keep reading as the reason unfold, and no, I couldn’t imagine what happened.
I also couldn’t imagine a mother, and I know it does happen, abandoning her baby, and then her sister not knowing how to take care of one.
There are some very funny moments, and you will be chuckling out loud, and the mind pictures are hilarious!
I am so glad that this is the beginning of a new series, and I can’t wait for the next book!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Keningston, and was not required to give a positive review.
Jennifer Beckstrand has done it again, written a book filled with so much emotion.
She writes a different type of Amish story, and this one includes lots of friends and family.
There is jealousy, anger, love, and lots of compassion. At times I wanted to shake Esther, she was so kind and Ivy is such a spoiled brat, but keep reading as the reason unfold, and no, I couldn’t imagine what happened.
I also couldn’t imagine a mother, and I know it does happen, abandoning her baby, and then her sister not knowing how to take care of one.
There are some very funny moments, and you will be chuckling out loud, and the mind pictures are hilarious!
I am so glad that this is the beginning of a new series, and I can’t wait for the next book!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Keningston, and was not required to give a positive review.

An Amish Homecoming (Joyful River #1) by Rosalind Lauer

 


Author Rosalind Lauer weaves a patchwork quilt of life and love in the Pennsylvania Amish community of Joyful River, where new beginnings and old ways meet with faith, hope, and compassion . . .
 
Essie Lapp’s birthday is doubly blessed. There’s a delicious meal to savor with her family, and the sweet gift of time spent with her beau, Harlan. Over two years they’ve forged a bond as strong and hopeful as a tree reaching for the sky. To practical-minded Essie, there’s comfort in knowing exactly what her future will bring. Yet Gott has his plan, and it soon turns her family’s world upside down . . .
 
Essie’s widowed English uncle has brought his troubled teenage daughters back to their mother’s Amish community, convinced it’s the fresh start they need. Essie strives to welcome her cousins, but adapting to plain living won’t be easy, even if the rewards are great. As cultures clash and hearts collide, Essie feels the first stirrings of doubt about Harlan’s commitment to her. Yet as the seasons change, and the heat of summer gives way to crisp, ripe autumn, this homecoming might mean a bountiful beginning 

Amazon 

 

About The Author


Rosalind Lauer grew up in a large family in Maryland and began visiting Lancaster County’s Amish community as a child. Lauer attended Wagner College in New York City and worked as an editor for Simon & Schuster and Harlequin Books. She now lives with her family in Oregon, where she writes in the shade of some towering two-hundred-year-old Douglas fir trees.

 

My Review

 


When you read the description of this book, you see that Miriam is being asked to have her deceased sister’s daughters. Their father is a policeman, and with his wife gone the girls have been going a bit wild. Now, Miriam and her family are Amish, can you imagine the changes in store for these girls?
I loved the title of this read, it resonates in so many of the lives here, of course, I think of the cousins, their mom was Amish, but it also makes me think of Harlan’s mom and her thoughts to move to Ohio.
We are given Essie Lapp’s story, she has been keeping company with Harlan, and is hoping for a fall wedding. There is also a sweet romance with one of the cousins and the milk truck driver, and this leads to a blossoming of a new career.
This is a warm hearted read, not without its problems, but we see people living their faith, although some could use a refresher course.
I’m so glad this is the beginning of a new series, and I am looking forward to a return visit to Joyful River!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Keningston, and was not required to give a positive review

Mending Hearts (Tompkins Mill #2) by Janice Kay Johnson

 

Miriam Bowman was devastated when her fiance was killed in a logging incident. In the years since the tragedy, she finds it impossible to enter into a new relationship for fear of it coming to a disastrous end. So she works at her quilt shop in town and stays away from anything that would risk her heart. As least until David Miller comes back home to take a second chance at the Amish way of life.

David feels responsible for the logging incident that killed his friend and Miriam's betrothed, and his life has been corrupted by guilt. That guilt only worsens when he and Miriam begin to spend time together after his return, and they begin to have feelings for each other. David might just be the man Miriam has been afraid of finding, one she could fall in love with. And Miriam is the only one who can truly forgive David for his perceived misdeeds. In order to risk their hearts and find the love they've been missing, David and Miriam will have to open them to each other.

Amazon

 

About The Author


 anice Kay Johnson is the author of over a hundred books for children and adults. Her first four published romance novels were coauthored with her mother, also a writer who has since published mysteries and children's books on her own. These were "sweet" romance novels, the author hastens to add; she isn't sure they'd have felt comfortable coauthoring passionate love scenes!

Janice graduated from Whitman College with a B.A. in history and then received a master's degree in library science from the University of Washington. She was a branch librarian for a public library system until she began selling her own writing.

She has written six novels for young adults and one picture book for the read-aloud crowd. Rosamund was the outgrowth of all those hours spent reading to her own daughters, and of her passion for growing old roses. Two more of her favorite books were historical novels she wrote for Tor/Forge. The research was pure indulgence for someone who set out intending to be a historian!

Janice is divorced and has raised her two daughters in a small, rural town north of Seattle, Washington. She's an active volunteer and board member for Purrfect Pals, a no-kill cat shelter, and foster kittens often enliven a household that already includes a few more cats than she wants to admit to!

Janice loves writing books about both love and family — about the way generations connect and the power our earliest experiences have on us throughout life. Her Superromance novels are frequent finalists for Romance Writers of America RITA® awards. Along with her books for Harlequin, Janice has written the Cape Trouble series of romantic suspense novels, and is about to launch a new series, Desperation Creek, set in rural eastern Oregon.

Website 

 

My Review



 

This is the second book in this series that I have read and enjoyed, there are some recurring characters, but this can be read alone.
We have a kind Amish man, David Miller, who is trying to work out of the guilt he feels after the death of his best friend and business partner. He even went so far as to leave his family and faith. Circumstances and the missing of his faith bring him back. Will he be accepted and forgiven?
We also meet Miriam Bowman, a young woman who wanted to marry Levi, David's business partner, and is now David's neighbor. Can she finally come to terms with Levi's death, and most of all live her faith and give forgiveness.
I loved being with these kind people, they are there for each other, and take care of their widows, as we see, even if they don't want help.
You find them always giving baskets of food, and their time to help one another. David is ready to help all those who need him, but can he help himself.
I was quickly absorbed in this story and community, and hope that we have more books coming!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Berkley, and was not required to give a positive review.



Monday, February 22, 2021

Celebrate Lit Presents: Of Gold and Iron by Nicki Chapelway

 

Of God and Iron (1)

About the Book

Book:  Of Gold and Iron

Author: Nicki Chapelway

Genre: Young adult, fantasy, romance, mythology/folklore, faerie

Release date: Sept 20, 2020

OfGoldandIron 

“Swear on something else. Swear on your humanity.”

I suddenly find it very hard to swallow. My humanity? With a jolt I realize that there are far greater things at risk here than just my life. I’m in the faerie world, anything could happen. Even immortality.

The Otherworld is the home of the faeries, deceitful, decadent, and deadly. As the next in line to be-come Guardians, Jaye and her brother Thomas are tasked with defending the human world from all things magical. But when a routine scouting mission ends with them trapped in the Otherworld, it becomes pain-fully clear that someone doesn’t want them to leave the world of the faeries. Determined to not become an immortal’s pawn, Jaye kidnaps Ravven Crowe, an arrogant solitary faerie, so that he can guide them safely home. But things quickly go from bad to worse when they are captured by the Winter Court and embroiled in a plot to start a faerie civil war. Thomas is enslaved by an Unseelie faerie, and it seems that the only way to save her brother and avoid a war is for Jaye to ally herself with Ravven.

The faeries are governed by a set of strict laws. For their own safety, the Guardians have their own rules. But with Thomas’s life hanging in the balance there is only one way to save him that does not include breaking the faerie’s Fair Law, a crime that ends in death. Together Jaye and Ravven must compete in a series of deadly tests given by the faerie courts in order to earn Jaye the right to be named the Fair Assassin and wield the Blade of Gold and Iron. As the Fair Assassin she will be permitted to kill any faerie she so chooses, but first she has to live long enough. Walking a fine line between destruction and further entanglement with Crowe, Jaye is going to have to break her own rules if she wants to win. She must trust a faerie. Her life and humanity depend on it.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

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Nicki is a twenty-something author of clean YA speculative fiction. She has been writing since she was eleven years old, and has published several works including portal fantasies such as A Week of Werewolves, Faeries, and Fancy Dresses and A Certain Sort of Madness; as well as Winter Cursed a dark fantasy Snow White retelling.

Nicki lives in Ohio where she spends far too much time watching TV and sleeping. She listens to music basically all the time, and adores obsessing over mythologies, her shows, and her slew of fictional boyfriends. When not writing, she can usually be found at her desk with either a paintbrush or a pen in her hand.

 

More from Nicki

I find mythology fascinating, and one of my favorite mythological creatures are faeries (and dragons, but this book is mostly about faeries—although there is at least one dragon…). Growing up as a self proclaimed tom boy, I found faeries to be boring and trite creatures, all sparkle and not enough teeth. I preferred elves with their factions: wood elves, light elves, dark elves, high elves… etc.

Tolkien has inspired so much about my fantasy worlds—actually he is directly responsible for why I write fantasy—and because of that I adopted his own source of inspiration for many of the events of Middle Earth: myths.

I started reading up on myths, especially Celtic which is where Tolkien derived some inspiration for his elves (the elf part is of course Norse, but the returning to the Undying Lands is based on the mysterious disappearance of the Tuatha De Danan in Celtic myths which were originally considered to be gods but later became known as a type of faerie). As I dug deeper into Celtic myths and started reading Irish folklore, I came across creatures that were so complex that one individual could have the characteristics of light, dark, high, and wood elves all meshed together. I became fascinated by these walking contradictions. Immortals that can be harmed by such mortal things as iron and bread. Tricksters who cannot lie. Beings with powerful magic, but governed by a very strict set of laws and compelled into obedience.

And much, much scarier than the faeries I grew up hearing about.

Irish mythology gave me everything I needed, from many different forms of faeries to defining characteristics and names. All I had to do was fit them into my world… and come up with a plot and characters, of course, but those I actually got from a dream.

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, February 12

Rebecca Tews, February 13

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 14

Texas Book-aholic, February 15

Blogging With Carol, February 15

Sara Jane Jacobs, February 16

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, February 17

Inklings and notions, February 18

Heidi and Books, February 18

For Him and My Family, February 19

deb’s Book Review, February 20

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 21

Artistic Nobody, February 22 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, February 23

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 24

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 25

Breny and Books, February 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Nicki is giving away the grand prize package of signed paperbacks of Nicki’s other three novels, a limited edition art print for Of Gold and Iron, and a coaster!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/10746/of-gold-and-iron-celebration-tour-giveaway

Celebrate Lit Presents: Catching Hope by Kathy Cassel

  About the Book Book:  Catching Hope Author: Kathy Cassel Genre: Middle-grade fiction, action/suspense Release date: February 1, 2021...