Tuesday, December 27, 2022

The Amish Mother's Secret by Diane Craver

 


Sometimes a beautiful miracle comes to you at exactly the wrong time…

Lindsay Prescott is forty and single when tragedy strikes. Diagnosed with stage 4, Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma cancer, her instinct is to right the wrongs in her life. Her unfortunate childhood with an alcoholic, verbally abusive mother drove her to break free in desperation at the age of 17. While working at a hotel along the beach on the East Coast, she met Harris Manning. He took her breath away and she gave herself to him in love.

Harris' life was already planned out for him by his wealthy parents. Falling for Lindsay had been a dream. However, compelled to wed the woman his parents chose for him, he’d left her to endure a shaky marriage.

Though Harris never knew it, Lindsay found herself pregnant when he left her with no way to care for identical triplets on her own. When the triplets were five months old, she reconnected with an Amish couple—Katie and Roman Yoder—who were unable to have children. The Yoders adopted Amy and Jenna while Lindsay kept Phoebe. She couldn’t bear to give all three babies away. In the years that followed, Katie worked hard to keep her away from her adopted daughters.

When you let go of a miracle, can you ever capture it again?

After Harris learns his ex-wife intercepted Lindsay’s calls years ago to tell him she was pregnant, he rushes to her side, thrilled to discover he’s a father. But life rarely gives fairytale endings. Revealing the truth may prove more devastating than the hurdles that came before…and all that will surely come after for a woman fighting for her life.

Amazon 

 

About The Author


 

As the youngest in the family, growing up on a farm in Findlay, Ohio, Diane often acted out characters from her own stories in the backyard. In high school she was the student sitting in class with a novel hidden in front of her propped up textbook. Before starting on her writing career, Diane was a schoolteacher and play director.

She met her husband while teaching at an orphanage, and they married three years later. While raising their six children in southwestern Ohio, Diane started writing non-fiction. Later, she decided it would be a nice escape to write fiction plus keep sane with a full and noisy household.

Several non-fiction articles of Diane's have been published in Woman's World Weekly, The Catholic Telegraph, Virtue, Down Syndrome Today, WritersWeekly.com, and several other publications. Her book, The Christmas of 1957, was reissued under the title A Christmas Gift. It placed second in the 2010 Preditors & Editors Poll (novel category) and received 5 stars from the Midwest Book Review. She writes Amish fiction, contemporary romance, inspirational mainstream, chick-lit mystery, and non-fiction books. Her novels have received great reviews from readers and reviewers.

Diane has published through a variety of houses, including Publishing by Rebecca J. Vickery, Samhain Publishing, Whimsical Publications, Victory Tales Press and Booklocker.com. She writes fun and inspiring stories filled with memorable characters. Diane gives thanks to God daily for all her wonderful blessings.

Diane has two Amish series. There are four books in her DREAMS of PLAIN DAUGHTERS Series. Another series is THE BISHOP'S DAUGHTERS. The fifth book in this series will be released soon. She also wrote two shorts, AN AMISH STARRY CHRISTMAS NIGHT and AN AMISH STARRY SUMMER NIGHT. Diane has reissued several of her books that were previously published. They have new covers with some new material added to them.

Learn more about Diane and her books at www.dianecraver.com and visit her author page on FB:https://www.facebook.com/Diane-Craver-153906208887/

Follow her on BookBub here: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/diane-craver

 

My Review


 
A mother's cancer illness leads her daughter to find family, a simplistic answer, but yes, the author has the mother diagnosed with lymphoma, and her daughter makes a startling discovery.
I had a lot of mixed emotions as I read this book, trying to put myself in each mother's shoes, and I respect the Amish mother's point of view, and worry about her children leaving the faith, but I struggled with her attitude.
There is a lot of forgiveness shown by a lot of the characters, and I loved the faith shown but most! Family does become the highlight here, and you will need to read to find out what happens with the triplets!
This became a page turner for me, I needed answers!
I received this book through Net Galley and the Publisher Vinspire, and was not required to give a positive review.

The Love of a Good Amish Woman (Joyful River #3) by Rosalind Lauer

 

Collette Yoder’s path hasn’t been easy since her husband abandoned her—and she recovered from a near-fatal injury. But now-widowed, she feels blessed to provide for her children, especially when her new job means helping the also newly widowed Bishop Aaron Troyer straighten out his too-busy life. She simply won’t let herself hope too much that their friendship could blossom into much, much more . . .
 
Aaron Troyer can only thank Gott that he’s finally found help. With a thriving congregation and two lively daughters growing up fast, the bishop has more demands on his time than hours in the day. And he’s long admired Collette Yoder's quiet courage and ability to find joy in the smallest things—an inspiring example for three visiting Englisch girls. But amid unforeseen trouble and strife, Aaron may realize that his admiration for Collette could lead to a lifetime of joy together.

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


This read was a real treat, and yes, I have read previous books that take place in Joyful River, PA, this is a read alone, with recurring characters.

From beginning to end I page turned enjoying this Amish love story. Yes, this is the Amish Bishop's, Aaron Troyer, and widow Collette Yoder. We embark on a journey of doubts and match matchmakers, busy with another prospect! There are wayward Amish, and we are reunited with English teens that live in their Amish aunts home, and are about to meet their Grandmother for the first time.

What a great read this was, problems, yes, but loved the faith shown.

Now I'm waiting for more!!

I received this book though Net Galley and the Publisher Kensington, and was not required to give a positive review.



The Secret Society of Salzburg by Renee Ryan

 

London, 1933
 
At first glance, Austrian opera singer Elsa Mayer-Braun has little in common with the young English typist she encounters on tour. Yet she and Hattie Featherstone forge an instant connection—and strike a dangerous alliance. Using their friendship as a cover, they form a secret society with a daring goal: to rescue as many Jews as possible from Nazi persecution.
 
Though the war’s outbreak threatens Elsa and Hattie’s network, their efforts attract the covert attention of the British government, offering more opportunities to thwart the Germans. But Elsa’s growing fame as Hitler’s favorite opera singer, coupled with her secret Jewish ancestry, make her both a weapon and a target—until her future, too, hangs in the balance.
 
From the glamorous stages of Covent Garden and Salzburg to the horrors of Bergen-Belsen,  two ordinary women swept up by the tide of war discover an extraordinary friendship—and the courage to save countless lives.

Amazon

 

About The Author


Renee Ryan is the author of thirty novels and counting. She sold her first book in 2001 by winning the inaugural Dorchester/Romantic Times New Historical Voice Contest. She published her second book with Harlequin’s Love Inspired Historical and has since sold books to other Harlequin imprints and to Amazon's Waterfall Press.

Renee grew up in a Florida beach town where she learned how to surf very poorly. Armed with a degree in Economics and Religious Studies from Florida State University, she explored various career opportunities, including stints at a Florida theme park, a modeling agency, and three cosmetic conglomerates. She went on to teach high school AP Economics, AP American Government and Latin while coaching award-winning cheerleading teams. She currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin with her husband and a large, fluffy cat many have mistaken for a small bear.

 

My Review


 

This story highlights two British sisters, Hattie and Vera, who give their gifts to help others. This is a WWII story, fictional, but if you read the author's notes, based on fact!

These sisters, innocently at first, begin with a love of opera! Then their gifts begin to open door, that in turn open doors for others. This is a story that needs to be told, and we should never forget, a hate of a group of people, and those who give the ultimate.

Will those you soon care about survive?

This is a read that is going to stay with you, have you holding your breath, and quickly page turning for answers.

I received this book through the Publisher Harlequin, and was not required to give a positive review.

 

Monday, December 26, 2022

Celebrate Lit Presents: Calor Author: J.J. Fischer

 

About the Book

Book: Calor

Author: J.J. Fischer

Genre: Fantasy

Release date: December 6, 2022

What if you could edit memories with a single touch?

The world-that-was is gone, lost to everything except living memory . . . but remembering comes at a terrible price. Sixty-two years after the apocalypse, a new society has emerged from the ashes of the old world where highly valued memories are traded and nostalgia is worth dying—and even killing—for.

Enslaved by a cruel master, Sephone Winter is forced to use her rare ability to manipulate memories to numb the darkest secrets of the ruling aristocracy.

Then Lord Adamo appears, speaking of a powerful relic capable of permanently erasing memories and recovering Sephone’s own lost childhood. But not everything about the young lord is as it seems, and soon Sephone must choose between helping Lord Adamo forget his past or journeying deep into the land of Lethe, where the truth about who she really is might finally be revealed . . . and a long desired future restored.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

J.J. Fischer’s writing dream began with the anthology of zoo animals she painstakingly wrote and illustrated at age five, to rather limited acclaim. Jasmine began writing her first proper novel at age fourteen, which eventually became her debut fantasy series, The Darcentaria Duology, which was published in 2021. She is a clinically-trained psychologist but no, she cannot read your mind. When she isn’t killing defenseless house plants, Jasmine enjoys devouring books, dabbling in floristry, playing the piano, and wishing it rained more often. Jasmine is married to David, and together they make their home a couple of hours north of Sydney, Australia.

 

More from J.J. Fischer

Have you ever wondered what your life would be like if you could selectively edit your memories with a single touch? What would you choose to erase, if anything? What memories would you spotlight?

 

What if you could transplant someone else’s memories into your own mind (and yours into someone else’s)? What would you choose to take? What would you choose to give away?

 

Influencing and transplanting memories is the gift of the female main character of Calor, Sephone Winter. Her gift was inspired by my own career as a clinically-trained psychologist, working with people who frequently have pasts they wish they could forget and who so often struggle to recall the good in their lives amongst all the bad. In neuropsychology we say that our minds stick like Velcro to the negative, but are like Teflon with the positive. And I think that’s very true—it’s hard to be grateful, joyful, positive, and gracious when we live in a fallen world where there’s so much sin, pain, and darkness.

 

Calor is a fantasy transformation of Hans Christian Andersen’s beloved 1843 tale The Nightingale (with echoes of the myths of Hades and Persephone). If you’ve never read The Nightingale, it’s worth diving into and it’s not a long story—it’s the tale of a nightingale who sings beautifully for the Emperor of China and is admired by all, only to be replaced with a mechanical, bejeweled substitute. Later on, when the substitute breaks and the Emperor lies dying, the flesh-and-blood bird returns and sings so beautifully that Death decides to spare the Emperor, and his kingdom is restored. The Emperor realizes what a great treasure he has possessed.

 

Calor is set in a futuristic fantasy society where people trade in memories of the world-that-was (essentially, nostalgia) because they can no longer experience it for themselves. They’re either living in the past, craving the “glory days” and immersing themselves in various pleasures, or selectively numbing bad memories, erasing everything which would take them away from the here-and-now, but at the price of their own humanity and self-awareness. You can see the obvious links to Andersen’s The Nightingale—this is a world which has embraced the imitation at the cost of the real. And though this story is fictitious, Calor really holds a mirror up to us as a society because, increasingly, I think that’s what we’re doing in the West. Our pasts are deeply painful and the future is terrifyingly uncertain, so we inhabit the space between—a space devoted to the pursuit of pleasure.

 

As you read Calor, I want to challenge you to think of all the times in your life when you embrace the imitation or the simulation over the real. No, I’m not talking about using fresh turmeric instead of powdered turmeric in your cooking, or throwing away your camera and basking in the mountain scenery out from behind a lens, but you get the idea. How do you rely on the world to fulfill God-shaped needs and longings? Are you dwelling among echoes of the truth rather than seeking the truth itself? To where (or to whom) does your pain drive you, and how can you let it drive you into the arms of your Creator instead?

 

Whoever you are, wherever you are, it is my dearest hope that this story entertains you and blesses you and encourages you, and speaks to your soul in the same way that Andersen’s tale first spoke to me.

 

Cherish the Real,

 

Jasmine

 

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, December 15

Wishful Endings, December 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 16

Through the Fire Blogs, December 17 (Author Interview)

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 18

Inklings and notions, December 19

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, December 20

Blossoms and Blessings, December 21 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, December 21

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 22

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 23

Blogging With Carol, December 24

Rebecca Tews, December 25

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 26

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 27

For Him and My Family, December 28

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, J.J. is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card, a copy of the book, a signed bookplate, and four character art cards commissioned especially for the book release!!

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/23237/calor-celebration-tour-giveaway

Saturday, December 24, 2022

Celebrate Lit Presents: Forever Home Author: Hope Toler Dougherty

About the Book

Book: Forever Home

Author: Hope Toler Dougherty

Genre: Sweet Romance/Christian Fiction

Release date: August 16, 2022

With a fulfilling job and a home of her own, former foster child, Merritt Hastings, relishes her stable, respectable life. Dreaming for more is a sure way for heartache. When a contested will turns her world upside down, she must reevaluate what’s important to her, what’s worth fighting for, and what’s worth sacrificing.

Patience has never been Sam Daniels’ strong suit with his history of acting quickly and asking questions later, and he’s ready for changes in his life…now. Too bad the plans for acquiring a radio station didn’t include a contract. Now he’s out of a job, out of a radio station, and out of prospects.

While his life is in flux, at least he can help Merritt steady hers, or will he rush in and overstep …again?

Will the sparks flying between these two opposites lead to a happily-ever-after or heartbreak for both?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Hope Toler Dougherty holds a master’s degree in English and taught at East Carolina University and York Technical College. Her novels include Irish EncounterMars…With Venus Rising, Rescued Hearts, Forever Music, and Forever Home. Her recent novella, “A Hatteras Surprise,” appears in Candy Cane Wishes and Saltwater Dreams and is also available as a standalone novel. She and her husband delight in visits with their two daughters and twin sons.

 

More from Hope

When I introduced the Daniels family in Forever Music, the first story in the Forever Series, I wrote about Josie, the little sister. I wanted to write about her brother Sam next, but after about eight chapters, the words stopped flowing and then the pandemic struck. Instead of writing during lockdown, I cleaned out closets, crocheted mask bands, and perfected a killer sourdough loaf.

 

I wanted to write. I tried to write. I loved Sam and wanted to discover his story, but…nothing.

When my publisher offered a slot in a novella collection, I pushed Sam to the back of my mind and wrote about his older brother, Ben. Ben’s story is set on the beautiful Hatteras Island on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Check out his romance in A Hatteras Surprise.

 

Sharing Ben’s courtship with Ginny Stowe freed me to get back to Sam and Merritt in Forever Home. Their story highlights foster care, music, friendship, and radio stations.

 

Impatient Sam usually acts first and thinks second. His happy-go-lucky personality chafes Merritt’s stick-with-a-plan attitude. Too bad she needs his help with her livelihood.  They don’t hit it off at first, but both are definitely intrigued with each other.

 

Readers can find subtle Italian references throughout the story. Here’s a favorite recipe friends might find in Merritt’s kitchen. I hope you like it and the story, too!

Orange Pistachio Biscotti

Ingredients:
2 C plain flour                         1 egg white
1 t baking powder                   2 T orange zest
¼ t salt                                    ½-1 C chopped pistachios
1 C sugar                                 1/2 C candied orange bits
2 eggs                                      orange juice, if needed

 

Directions
Sift flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar into a mixing bowl. In another bowl, beat eggs and egg white together, then add to flour mixture. Stir in orange zest, nuts, and orange bits. Mix until dough is smooth. If the dough is too dry, add orange juice a tablespoon at a time.

Flour hands and scoop half the dough onto one side of the cookie sheet prepared with cooking spray. Shape the dough into a 15×3-inch log. Repeat with remaining dough. The logs should be several inches apart.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. Tops of the logs should be firm.

Remove to wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Cut logs on a diagonal into ½-inch-thick slices. Place the slices, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 15 minutes.

Allow the cookies to cool completely on a wire rack. They will harden as they cool. Yields about 48 cookies depending on size

Blog Stops

Pause for Tales, December 14

For Him and My Family, December 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 15

Inklings and notions, December 16

Texas Book-aholic, December 17

Cover Lover Book Review, December 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 19

Beauty in the Binding, December 20 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, December 20

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, December 21

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 23

For the Love of Literature, December 24 (Author Interview)

Susan K. Beatty, Author, December 25 (Author Interview)

Blogging With Carol, December 26

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Hope is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card, one signed copy of Forever Home, and book swag!

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/23236/forever-home-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours Presents: Roast Date (Barks & Beans Cafe Cozy Mystery) by Heather Day Gilbert

 


Roast Date (Barks & Beans Cafe Cozy Mystery)
by Heather Day Gilbert

About Roast Date


Roast Date (Barks & Beans Cafe Cozy Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
7th in Series
Setting – West Virginia
WoodHaven Press (December 20, 2022)
Number of Pages ~250
Digital ASIN ‏ : ‎ B09Z8NYHX9

BOOK SEVEN in the bestselling BARKS & BEANS CAFE cozy mystery series!!

 

Welcome to the Barks & Beans Cafe, a quaint place where folks pet shelter dogs while enjoying a cup of java…and where murder sometimes pays a visit.

 

After much cajoling, Macy gives in to her neighbor, Vera, and agrees to come to her book club’s Christmas party so she can share about the cafe. While public speaking isn’t Macy’s thing, she wants to brighten Vera’s lonely holiday season…and she can sell a little house blend on the side.

 

When a lively book discussion spirals into a public roast of the mayor—who happens to be sitting in their midst—things get uncomfortable. Soon afterward, the mayor shows up dead in Vera’s bathroom, and no amount of gingerbread cookies or eggnog can restore Vera to the club’s good graces. ‘Tis the season for Macy to find the murderer, or else Vera might be taking a long winter’s nap in a jail cell.

 

Join siblings Macy and Bo Hatfield as they sniff out crimes in their hometown…with plenty of dogs along for the ride! The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series features a small town, an amateur sleuth, and no swearing or graphic scenes.

The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series in order:
Book 1: No Filter
Book 2: Iced Over
Book 3: Fair Trade
Book 4: Spilled Milk
Book 5: Trouble Brewing
Book 6: Cold Drip
Book 7: Roast Date

About Heather Day Gilbert

Award-winning novelist Heather Day Gilbert enjoys writing mysteries and Viking historicals. She brings authentic family relationships to the page, and she particularly delights in heroines who take a stand to protect those they love. Avid readers say Heather’s realistic characters—no matter what century—feel like best friends. When she’s not plotting stories, this native West Virginian can often be found hanging out with her husband and four children, playing video games, or reading Agatha Christie novels.

Author Links

Webpage: https://heatherdaygilbert.com/

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/heatherdaygilbert/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/heatherdgilbert

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/heather-day-gilbert

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7232683.Heather_Day_Gilbert

Purchase Link – Amazon 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

December 19 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 19 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

December 19 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

December 20 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

December 20 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT

December 20 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 20 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

December 21 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW

December 21 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

December 21 – Lady Hawkeye – AUTHOR GUEST POST

December 21 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 22 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 22 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

December 22 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

December 22 – The Mystery Section – SPOTLIGHT

December 23 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW

December 23 – The Book Diva’s Reads – AUTHOR GUEST POST

December 23 – I’m Into Books – SPOTLIGHT

December 23 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Celebrate Lit Presents: She Seems So Normal Author: Leigh Mackenzie

 

About the Book

Book: She Seems So Normal

Author: Leigh Mackenzie

Genre: Nonfiction, documentary narrative on biblical trauma healing

Release date: November 15, 2022

In She Seems So Normal: Shatter the Plastic Princess, Embrace Authentic Faith (Brookstone Creative Group, 2022), author Leigh Mackenzie draws from scriptural expertise as a former Bible research assistant for megachurch preachers and personal experiences as a childhood sexual abuse (CSA) trauma and military rape assault survivor to speak openly and courageously about biblical trauma healing.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

As a sermon research assistant at a multisite midwestern megachurch, Leigh Mackenzie shared her love and talent to delve deeply in Scripture and extract original perspectives on teaching and personal application for her preaching team.

Known as “The Church Girl Writes” (one of 2017’s Pureflix’s Top Christian Mommy Bloggers), her professional work regularly appeared in Christian Standard magazine on subjects ranging from child trafficking and church core values to thrift store ministry and the attributes of Hannah. Her Bible study questions for The Lookout magazine, one of the nation’s oldest Bible study guides for adults, and online communion meditations for Christian Standard equipped leaders for ministry. She also has written devotional material for The Upper Room.

Catch Leigh (rhymes with “bee”) narrating “She Seems So Normal”  on her podcast, reflecting on her own trauma healing journey, shattering the plastic princess, and embracing authentic faith. Follow her on IG xoxo_leighmackenzie and FB @LeighMackenzie.

Loving audiobooks and sunshine, Leigh and husband Christopher passionately explore the world, eating ethnic food, and enjoying good wine together. With a son in computer sciences at UIC and an Ethiopian daughter attending high school, the Mackenzies delight to reside in Chicago, IL with rescue dogs, Scout Charles and Louie Vuitton.

Leigh’s Superpowers: Vulnerable Honesty, Biblical Knowledge, Trustworthiness

Ministry Goals: Embrace, Encourage, and Empower trauma survivors to heal biblically, spiritually, emotionally, and physically.

 

More from Leigh

What inspired you to start a podcast and publish a book on biblical trauma healing? Why now?

 

I held my breath watching the Olympic gymnasts’ abuse testimony before Congress, bracing myself against a PTSD episode of my own in response.

 

Epstein, Cosby, McCarrick, R. Kelley… names representing mankind’s disturbing sin reverberated within me. Many survivor stories remain deeply hidden, scarring the souls of the abused and their abusers. Questions arise: How could this happen? Where was God? Is Jesus enough?

 

At the time, I felt like there weren’t a lot of hopeful, non-triggering stories containing solid answers from a biblical, medical, or community standpoint of healing. It was frustrating, so in December 2021, I began my indie-publishing odyssey.

 

She Seems So Normal: Shatter the Plastic Princess, Embrace Authentic Faith is a documentary narrative of a journey to unearth long-hidden, heinous childhood sexual abuse. As a megachurch biblical researcher for preachers, I was the picture of “put together, Plastic Princess” on the outside, but inside I was dying, believing the enemy’s lies, and wondering what’s wrong with my faith. When I stepped away from the grave of fearful rule-following legalism and into the gardens to embrace authentic faith, I found avenues of recovery and restoration for anxiety, trauma, and shame with Jesus, mentors, prayer warriors, therapists, and the work of the Holy Spirit.

 

Can we start a church movement of welcoming messy stories and accepting transparent instead of perfect so you can feel free to #ShowYourCrown, too? I think we can.

 

 

Who supported you through your valley of trauma therapy?

 

There were so many who prayed and supported me in this process, giving me courage and hope and, at times, a swift kick in the fanny to keep me going. I can’t name them all, but you’ll see how Dr. Michele Novotni, my family, and Allison Harris rallied around me through the horrors of the cemetery to bring me into the gardens of God’s delight and rest.

 

Friend and mentor Dr. Michele Novotni was my “old ox” leading, encouraging, and energizing me throughout EMDR therapy, helping me process post-session, developing coping strategies, and grounding me in faith with prayerful intercession.

 

Then there was my unbelievable little family… my faithful husband, Christopher, and our incredible kids, who unreservedly offered pickle jars, lullaby songs, and cooking lessons on clarifying butter for baklava… but you’ll have to read the book to understand.

 

Another friend in church leadership, my magazine publisher’s wife, Allison Harris, told me to write through this season (this is all her fault!) and supported me through prayer as I courageously marched into the trauma therapy that helped resolve my underlying issues for long-term PTSD, panic attacks, nightmares, suicidal ideations, and eating disorders (all of which are common symptoms as a result of sexual abuse).

 

Wait, do you have a legit recipe for Baklava?

 

Yes, but you’d have to torture me to give up our friend’s family recipe! It’s SOOOO good. And I’ve suffered enough trying to make it… ha-ha.

 

No, seriously.

 

Tell us about some cool extra features you included in She Seems So Normal.

 

Writing a sensitive book about sensitive subject matter, I passionately wanted to provide more multimedia resources for getting the help, support, or knowledge survivors, family, friends, or pastoral staff might need while reading. So I’ve sprinkled QR Codes throughout the book instantaneously linking people to online sites. You’ll also see little crowns with numbers corresponding to 60 podcast episodes where I’ve narrated and commentated my post-writing thoughts. BONUS: I included interviews with a couple key players you’ll not get inside the book because I wanted you to hear other voices of my champions, not just mine.

 

 

Isn’t it enough to just pray and have faith that Jesus will heal you? What role did the medical community play in your journey?

 

When I accepted Jesus Christ, I tried my best to clean up my act. Heck, I even stopped cussing and getting drunk! From Bible study and praying to leading small groups and serving funeral dinners, everything I saw other respectable Christians doing I began copying to act normal, becoming like a “Plastic Princess.” I served till the cows came home; I was just so thankful Jesus saved my soul from hell.

 

You can put lipstick on a pig, but that doesn’t make her a lady. For years I wondered what was wrong with me, why I didn’t always have love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. I begged Jesus to forgive me, to heal me, to rescue me from myself, wondering secretly, Was I even saved?

 

Severely traumatized and needing professional medical help, my therapist and other doctors helped me find peace with my past abuse by unravelling abusive grooming cycles to reveal my true identity in Jesus Christ. Along with the glorious work of the Holy Spirit, they played a valuable part in sweeping up the shattered pieces of Little Me, Middle Me, and Teen Me to make me whole and serve the Lord once again.

 

 

Who should listen to the podcast or read “She Seems So Normal”?

 

Many women silently endure the after-effects of trauma, so I am writing

for the 1 in 3 women in the U. S. who have experienced “sexual violence.”

(https://www.cdc.gov/injury/features/sexual-violence/index.html) This book is

for the suffering Christian who may question her salvation or be losing

hope that Jesus is big enough to heal her, who has limited outlets to begin exploring

these topics (mental health wellness, predatory grooming, suicidal ideation, sexual abuse) except between the covers of a book. She may look the picture of “put together”

on the outside but on the inside, she is dying, believing the enemy’s lies, and

wondering what’s wrong with her faith.

 

The podcast and book are also for FAMILY, FRIENDS, and CHURCH STAFF looking for ways to support and understand those in their lives who have been traumatized.

 

 

Are you working on other projects?

 

Yeah, I’m jazzed and honored to be co-authoring with the amazing Randy Petersen on two projects. The first, Stories Not Shared on Sundays (and Why We Feel Like Imposters In Church), will combine modern stories of Church people with many lesser-known, uncomfortable Bible stories (and their messy characters!) not normally preached in a 52-week sermon schedule to help churches create more authentic, transparent environments with a broader acceptance and understanding of those who aren’t “perfect” for them to encounter a Savior who is.

 

As an extension of his work for the American Bible Society’s State of the Bible in America, we are also in the beginning planning stages for The Five Major Cultural Shifts the Church Has To Make To Be Relevant based on research and statistics over the last ten years by ABS about the state of faith, the church, and Christian culture in America.

 

There are a few other books in the works, too, about parenting across two generations written with my Gen Z son; a few evangelistic death stories; and “The Rest of the 23rd” as well.

 

Stay tuned.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, December 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 11

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 13

Inklings and notions, December 14

An Author’s Take, December 15

Cover Lover Book Review, December 16

Splashes of Joy , December 17 (Author Interview)

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, December 17

deb’s Book Review, December 18

Guild Master, December 19 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 20

Spoken from the Heart, December 21 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, December 21

Rebecca Tews, December 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Leigh is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card along with a “She Seems So Normal” #showyourcrown pin and sticker along with a signed 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/23057/she-seems-so-normal-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, December 19, 2022

Celebrate Lit Presents: Judy in Disguise Author: Jennifer Lynn Cary

 

About the Book

Book:Judy in Disguise

Author: Jennifer Lynn Cary

Genre: Historical Christian Romance

Release date: November 4, 2022

She wants her history to stay hidden…

…He’s trying to break free of his past

But as they reveal themselves to each other, can they carry out their covert mission?

Judy Larkin has been shy to show her true self ever since the worst day of her life. Which makes her the perfect target for her Simon Legree wannabe boss. He knows the right buttons to push making noncompliance next to impossible. But is she really the type of person to do this kind of thing? Especially with the boss’s preppy nephew?

Geoff Spooner has let himself be manipulated for too long but coming out from under his uncle’s thumb will cost him. Is he willing to pay the price? Could be this last demand will be the straw that breaks him free, but what will he lose in the bargain? His self-respect?

It’s 1972. Join Judy and Geoff in this quirky misadventure as they go undercover to discover who they really are, what the cardinal in the sycamore has to say, and what they are truly equipped to do.

You will love this sweet, clean tale inspired by the song “Judy in Disguise” because everyone roots for the underdog.

Get Judy in Disguise today.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Historical Christian Romance author, Jennifer Lynn Cary, likes to say you can take the girl out of Indiana, but you can’t take the Hoosier out of the girl. Now transplanted to the Arizona desert, this direct descendant of Davy Crockett and her husband of forty years enjoy time with family where she shares tales of her small-town heritage and family legacies with their grandchildren. She is the author of The Crockett Chronicles series, The Relentless series, and The Weather Girls trilogy as well as the stand-alone novel, Cheryl’s Going Home, her novella Tales of the Hob Nob Annex CafĂ©, and her split-time novels The Traveling Prayer Shawl and The Forgotten Gratitude Journal. Judy in Disguise is the first book of her spin-off series The Weather Girls Wedding Shoppe and Venue.

 

More from Jennifer

Have you ever been to a party and had so much fun you hated to leave? That’s how I felt when I finished up The Weather Girls. I fell in love with the characters and the memory lane saunter through my hometown of Kokomo, Indiana.

Then, chatting with a good writing friend, I realized I could have a spin-off series where Ferguson House, the business, and of course the cardinal and the sycamore tree all play a part.

The friends from the original series could drop by the stories, but these would be stand-alones. I also wanted to make these stories fun as well as heartwarming.

Then I had the question–where to get the story inspirations?

The same place I got it for Sunny, Stormy, and Windy—the oldies station.

That’s when I Googled song titles from the 60s that had girls’ names in them. When “Judy in Disguise” popped up, I knew it had to be the first of the new Weather Girls Wedding Shoppe and Venue series. The story ideas came fast and furious.

I am so excited about this new series, and I hope you will be too as familiar song titles get new plot points. Come join me at the Weather Girls Wedding Shoppe and Venue.

Blog Stops

Pause for Tales, December 17

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 18 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 19

Connie’s History Classroom, December 20

Texas Book-aholic, December 21

deb’s Book Review, December 22

Spoken from the Heart, December 23

Cover Lover Book Review, December 24

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, December 25 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 26

Stories By Gina, December 27 (Author Interview)

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, December 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 28

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 29

For the Love of Literature, December 30 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, December 30

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon card and an eBook 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/23239/judy-in-disguise-celebration-tour-giveaway

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours Presents: The Case of the Parrot Loving Professor by Debbie De Louise

 


The Case of the Parrot Loving Professor
by Debbie De Louise

About The Case of the Parrot Loving Professor


The Case of the Parrot Loving Professor
Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Setting – Buttercup Bend, a fictional town in the Catskills, New York
Next Chapter Publishing
Number of Pages: ? approx. 279

Cathy Carter knew that returning to college would be tough, but she never expected it would involve finding her anthropology professor’s dead body.

 

There are no shortages of suspects in Dr. Bodkin’s murder. Besides his three ex-wives and estranged son and daughter, there are also the members of the Talking Parrots Club, a group of four parrot enthusiasts, of which he was the president and founder.

 

As Cathy delves into Bodkin’s murder, she discovers a relationship between her teacher and the Mennonite family from whom she purchased the farmland for her new pet rescue center. She and her friend Nancy, now employed at a detective agency, work together to help Detective Hunt and Sheriff Miller solve the crime.

 

About Debbie De Louise

Debbie De Louise is a reference librarian at a public library. She’s the author of 14 novels including the six books of the Cobble Cove cozy mystery series featuring Alicia the librarian and Sneaky, the library cat, and the new Buttercup Bend cozy mysteries featuring Cathy Carter, the owner of a pet cemetery and rescue center. Debbie’s other books include standalone mysteries, a paranormal romance, a time-travel novel, and a collection of cat poems. She also writes articles for Catster.com and has published dozens of short stories and poems in anthologies. She’s a member of the Cat Writers’ Association, Sisters-in-Crime, International Thriller Writers, and the Long Island Authors Group. She lives on Long Island with her husband, daughter, and two cats. Learn more about her and her books by visiting https://debbiedelouise.com.

Author Links

Website/Blog/Newsletter Sign-Up: https://debbiedelouise.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/debbie.delouise.author/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Deblibrarian

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2750133.Debbie_De_Louise

Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2bIHdaQ

All Author: https://allauthor.com/author/debbiedelouise/

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

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/debbiedelouise/

Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/debbie-de-louise

Debbie’s Character’s Chat Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/748912598599469/\

Sneaky the Library Cat’s blog: https://Sneakylibrarycat.wordpress.com

Purchase Links – Amazon – Books2Read a Rafflecopter giveaway

TOUR PARTICIPANTS

December 12 – Guatemala Paula Loves to Read – REVIEW

December 12 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 13 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT

December 13 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – GUEST POST 

December 13 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 14 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

December 14 – I’m Into Books – SPOTLIGHT

December 14 – Bootsie’s Book Nook – SPOTLIGHT

December 15 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT, EXCERPT

December 15 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

December 16 – Novels Alive – REVIEW, SPOTLIGHT

December 16 – Lady Hawkeye – SPOTLIGHT

December 17 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

December 17 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

December 17 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT

December 18 – Cozy Up With Kathy – CHARACTER GUEST POST

December 18 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT

Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?

Click Here to Find Details and Sign Up Today!

Great Escapes Virtual Book Tours Presents: Wined and Died in New Orleans (A Vintage Cookbook) by Ellen Byron

  Wined and Died in New Orleans (A Vintage Cookbook) by Ellen Byron About Wined and Died in New Orleans Wined an...