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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Walnut Tree - Giveaway and Review

I believe it's official. I am a complete Charles Todd fan now. I believe I've read at least 5 of his books and his writing style is incomparable to any other author I've read. Each time I read a Bess Crawford book, I truly believe I am seeing and hearing things from the characters own point of view and that's why I believe his books are so addicting. You begin to care about the characters, in this case Lady Elspeth Douglas, who is struggling the social binds that require her to marry into her social status while being care for by her Cousin Kenneth since her parents have both passed away. Now at the height of World War 1, in 1914, Elspeth finds herself in France caring for her dear friend Madeline, who has just learned her husband is being called up for duty and must leave just as she is about to deliver her first child.

During her stay with Madeline, Elspeth becomes enchanted with Madeline's brother, Alain who she also learns is about to leave to join the war. On their last night together, Alain asks Elspeth for permission to court her when he returns from the war, and offers her his mother's ring as a token of their promise, which she accepts. Alain begs her to return to England fearing that the Germans will overtake the city of Paris soon and he won't be able to protect her. She promises she'll return once Madeline has the baby.

As Elspeth begins her journey home to England, she encounters some of the horrors of war, too many wounded dying men in desperate need of care and very limited resources. She offers what care she can as she comes upon the victims trying to find a way back across the English Channel but soon finds herself in danger and an unlikely hero in a childhood friend, Peter Gilchrist who saves her from being shelled while caring for the men. He helps secure her a way back to England but not without their being a spark of feelings between the two. Elspeth feels she can't commit to Peter even though she possess a different more strong sense of affection for Peter, because she has promised herself to Alain.

However with the war continuing Lady Elspeth feels she can't simply return to her life of luxury while so many are in need, so she attempts to find a way to join the nursing corps but without securing the permission of her Cousin Kenneth she won't be able to based solely on her social status. But Elspeth is determined to find a way to help those that she deeply cares for that are serving in the war, and nursing seems to be the only open door for her to learn the fate of the men she is torn between.

In the novel, The Walnut Tree by Charles Todd is a poignant, compelling tale brimming with adventure, danger and love. This is a enchanting holiday gift and a wonderful companion to Charles Todd's acclaimed Bess Crawford series. Charles Todd is the New York Times bestselling author of the Inspector Ian Rutledge mysteries, the Bess Crawford mysteries, and two stand-alone novels. I received The Walnut Tree compliments of William Morrow, a division of Harper Collins Publishers for my honest review and I can honest say this one was a heartwarming 5 out of 5 stars. I love historical romance novels with the World Wars as a perfect backdrop and this is no exception!

For more information on The Walnut Tree, Charles Todd, or where to pick up a copy of this wonderful novel today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Charles Todd on Facebook by clicking here.  

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; First Edition edition (October 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062236997
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062236999
Thanks to the generous folks at William Morrow, they are offering a giveaway copy of this Holiday novel to one lucky winner of my blog, Reviews From The Heart. Here's your guidelines to enter:

1. Be a follower of my blog, Reviews From The Heart.

2. Be a resident of the US or have a US shipping address. Please No P.O. Boxes.

3. Leave a comment below telling me why you'd love to win a copy of this book along with your email address. You can use the words (at) and (dot) instead of the symbols.

I will notify the winner when the giveaway ends on November 9th by email and post this to my Facebook page, Reviews From The Heart as well. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Lola's Secret

There is an old saying that misery loves company and that is no more true for the residents of The Valley View Motel run by the Quinlan family under the wise old adage of 84-year-old Lola. Her goal is to help find a way to help restore hurting souls during the Christmas season. While strife remains between her own family members, Lola also opens up the hotel to strangers during Christmas and with that comes a host of other issues. I always say that sometimes it's easier to deal with other people's issues rather than your own because you are too close to see a clear solution and that seems to be the wisdom that Lola applies to those staying at the hotel. Each one has their own issues that they are struggling to overcome whether it's addictions, or simple relationship issues, Lola is hoping that simply being together can help them get past their problems and into solutions.

In the novel, Lola's Secret by Monica McInerney, it seems as though Lola's straight shooting and forward advice is often times what is needed instead of merely candy-coating a sympathy with her guest or family members. I love how well written and diverse the different characters are and how each of them thinks each situation that they are in, are generally worse than what anyone else is experiencing. Sometimes it takes working together to get to the heart of the problem and I think that through this fictional account of the Quinlan family, Lola is able to help each person in sometimes very unexpected ways.

I am always looking for a great Christmas book to read and while I have read similar books with storylines much like this one where a group of people are gathered together during unfortunate circumstances in the end, it all works out, this one has a bit more going for it. I love Lola's gumption and sometimes find that the older we get the wiser we become. It's often hard however to get younger people to follow such sage wisdom until they have exhausted all other attempts.

I received Lola's Secret by Monica McInerney compliments of TLC Book Tours and Ballantine Books for my honest review and think everyone will find something that they can relate to in this beautiful written novel. My only regret was that I wish the book was longer because you truly come to care about each and every single one of her characters she introduces in this novel. In my opinion, this one justly deserves a 5 out of 5 stars and I'll be looking for more from Monica McInerney in the future.

For more information about Lola's Secret, Monica McInerney, or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

For more review from the TLC Book Tour for Lola's Secret please click here. 

You can also find Monica McInerney on Facebook by clicking here. 

Beyond The Storm

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Beyond the Storm
Abingdon Press (October 2012)
Carolyn Zane


Author of 35 books, wife, mother and yes…hot (flasher) lives with her fabulous husband, Matt and their 5 children and 3 dogs in the scenic Willamette Valley in Oregon. When asked to describe her family, Carolyn likens her crowd to the Brangelia Bunch saying modestly, “Only we’re better looking.” Right now,Carolyn is back in the saddle with her new title: Beyond The Storm, coming out in October 2012! In the mean time, be sure to catch her on the critically acclaimed TOOHOTMAMAS Blog where Carolyn and Wendy tackle Marriage, motherhood and menopause: How to do all three and stay out of prison! They are hilarious! You'll wet yourself, guaranteed! Visit them at:


After a tornado rips through her town, store owner Abigail comes across a piece of fabric from a wedding dress among the devastation. Abigail is moved to start collecting other swatches of fabric she finds – her neighbor’s kitchen curtains, a man’s necktie, a dog’s bed – which she stashes in shopping bags. As she pursues her seemingly absurd quest, horrible realities spark the question, “What kind of a God would allow such tragedy?”

As she struggles to reconcile her right to happiness amidst the destruction, Abigail begins piecing together a patchwork quilt from the salvaged fabric in hopes it will bring some peace. But a new relationship with Justin, a contractor, may require too much of her fragile heart. Will her pain and questions of faith give way to the courage to love?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Beyond the Storm, go HERE.

I received Beyond the Storm by Carolyn Zane compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and for those of you that love an outstanding series dedicated to Christian Romance, then you will want to pick up this book in the Quilts of Love Series. I personally rate it a 5 out of 5 stars and being a huge quilter myself and a book lover, I could relate to the devastation in dealing with a natural disaster especially in the midst of Hurricane Sandy hitting the eastern seaboard and hitting the states of New York, New Jersey, and Virginia unexpectedly hard. To come upon the belongings of someone else, your mind automatically wonders who's does it belong to and if they are OK, but often times our first question whenever anything strikes unexpectedly in our personal lives, is "Why, God, Why?" This book does an exceptional job at dealing with possible answers in Abigail's own search for answers.

For more information about Beyond the Storm, Carolyn Zane or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Carolyn Zane on Facebook by clicking here. 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Mended: Pieces of a Life Made Whole

"If you would have told me fifteen years ago I would be working on a book about my Christian walk, I would have laughed. And so the story goes, right? God has a way of redefining our expectations.

It has been a labor of love to walk back through some writing published over the past four and a half years on my blog, Bring the Rain. The blog began as a way to keep family and friends informed as we walked through the pregnancy of our fourth daughter, Audrey Caroline, who we only got to have with us on this earth for a few short hours. I blogged through the brokenness and hurt, clinging to God's Word and a community emerged. Somewhere along the way I began to consistently get e-mails from people asking if there was some way to combine my more devotionalesque entries into book form. Mended is the fruit of that vision, and I hope it blesses you and reminds you how loved you are by your Creator. Has something convinced you that you aren't a worthy recipient of His love? Where are the distractions and the noise of life getting in the way of your walk with Him?

Whatever calls our name louder than the voice of Jesus needs to be identified as an obstacle in our walk. Life is busy and days are short. We don't take the time we need to let our souls breathe. I want to invite you into my little corner of the world for a few minutes of your day and ask you to sit with me in silence. There's no wrong way to read Mended. Go at the pace that matches how God is speaking to you. But as you start, let me suggest that you carve out a half hour out of the madness each day and let's talk about the way He loves us in spite of ourselves.

My hope is that will be a resource that leads you to pray and dig deeper into His word. I have given you some prompts to help with this along the way, whether you are reading alone or with a trusted friend or spouse. Each entry has a focused Scripture, a devotional, and then some brief application ideas." (pg 2).

In the book, Mended: Pieces of a Life Made Whole by Angie Smith, she incorporates her own stories as a way to help the reader look into their own life circumstances and be challenged to see how God can heal all those broken places and renew us in ways we might never have imagined. This would be a perfect for a women's small Bible Study to help heal the areas within us all that remain broken and make us feel less than perfect, when God's whole purpose is restoration in our lives. I think the way Angie has utilized her own stories creates a bonding of sorts with what women can relate to on their levels. The overachiever, the one never feeling worthy enough, the ones whose past is holding us back from the future God has imagined for us. This book does just that and more and one I highly recommend!!!

I received Mended: Pieces of a Life Made Whole by Angie Smith, compliments of Shelton Interactive and B and H Publishing Group for my honest review. Far too often, as women who are busy in families and marriages we place our own needs far below others and this book helps heal those places and makes us better equipped to deal with those challenges that women face. I rate this book a perfect 5 out of 5 stars.

For more information on Mended: Pieces of a Life Made Whole, Angie Smith or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Angie Smith on Facebook. 

To visit Angie Smith on her website, please click here. 

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Father of Lights ~ DVD Giveaway and Review

About Father of Lights
FATHER OF LIGHTS chronicles the journey of filmmaker Darren Wilson and his team as they fearlessly travel the globe, far from the daily existence of the typical evangelical believer in the West. By thoughtfully documenting the stories of extraordinary believers and candidly filming miracles, visions and other supernatural occurrences, Wilson engages viewers in modern day examples of the true nature and character of God.  

Wilson gives honest access to his own spiritual questions as he tackles the religious misconceptions he has struggled with throughout his life.  “I went into making this film by asking the simple question: who is God? I wanted to know His character, His personality, and who He truly is. To answer this question, we had to peel back the many layers of religious garbage that has been passed onto him through generations. That He is angry. Vengeful. Wrathful. And in general, that He doesn’t like you very much. The truth, as you will see vibrantly in this film, is that He is the most loving, compassionate, and wonderful Father you can imagine.”

About Wanderlust Productions
Wanderlust Productions is a video production company focusing on creating content for various media that highlights, informs, and is designed to spiritually stretch our audience.  Created by Darren Wilson, Professor at Judson University, Wanderlust’s focus is on telling stories that inspire and agitate, that are unwavering in their honesty yet are emotionally compelling.  While our content will always be Christian in nature, we are not afraid to explore themes, concepts, or areas that may be considered “risky” by the Christian establishment.  Wanderlust prides itself on its willingness to put the story above the message.  That being said, the message will never waver.

My Review
This is such an powerful documentary of just how wondrous the love of God is to those that we encounter in our day to day lives. While this video shows some of the extreme conversions of God's power in their lives, from a witch doctor, a notorious Chicago gang leader, a Hindu holy man who has been searching all his life for the one true God, and even a random encounter with people in the land of Israel shows what is impossible for man to achieve, for God it's possible! 

My husband and I were powerfully impacted in unexpected ways and I have to say my favorite person was an ex-drug addict, now turned street evangelist for God, Todd White. You can just see the love he has for the people he encounters and shows us all that the Bible is alive and real. That they are not just stories but real power that even now we can show to every single person around us and let the light of our Father shine in all of us. Without light, there is only darkness. I received this DVD, Father of Lights compliments of Flyby Promotions and Wanderlust Productions for my honest review and proudly give it a 5 out of 5 shining stars! You can not watch this movie without being impacted for a greater good to share the love and light of God to every single person you meet. This would make for a powerful movie to share in a Bible Study or church group! This DVD runs about 98 minutes and contains some subject matter that might not be suitable for young children.

Thanks to the generous people at FlyBy Promotions and Wanderlust Productions, they are offering a giveaway of this DVD to one lucky follower of my blog. Here's all you need to do to enter:

1. Be a follower of my blog, Reviews From The Heart. 

2. Be a resident of the US or have a US shipping address. No P.O. Boxes please!

3. Leave a comment telling me why you'd love to win a copy of this DVD along with your email address below in the comment box. You can use the words (at) and (dot) instead of the symbols. I will notify the winner via email when the giveaway ends on November 5th!

For more information about Father of Lights or where to pick up a copy of this DVD today, please click on the links below: 

Visit the Father of Lights website by clicking here. 

You can also find Father of Lights on Facebook. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Soul's Gate

"There will come a day when you will train them - they will be four. The song, the teacher, the leader, the temple. Keep your eyes open to see, your ears open to listen, your heart open to feel, and your mind open to discern.

When the time comes, the Spirit will reveal each of them to you. You will teach them the wonders of my power they can't yet imagine. And instruct these warriors how to go far inside the soul and marrow.

They will rise up and fight for the hearts of others. They will demolish strongholds in the heavens and grind their enemies to dust. Their victories will spread across the nations. You will pour out your life for them and lead them to freedom, and they will turn and bring healing to the broken and set the hearts of others free.

And when the wolf rises, the four must war against him and bring about his destruction, only they have hope of victory. And for one, their vision will grow clear, and for one, the darkness of choice will rain on them, and for one, the other world will become more real than this one, and for one, death will come before the appointed time.

He folded the paper and put it back in his pocket. Five days from now Reece would explain to Brandon, Dana, Marcus and Tamera that they were the four. And pray like mad they believed him." (Pg 6-7)

In the latest suspense thriller from James Rubart, Soul's Gate is the first in the Well Spring Novel series, geared for those fans that love a good thrill ride. Coupled with facts from the Gospels of the Bible, along with the Book of Acts, Soul's Gate takes the readers into a dimension that thinly veils the one we know exists, the one in-between the spiritual realm to battle for the souls of the lost. The four chosen ones will be endowed with supernatural divine powers that will enable them to do things no one believes is possible but along the way risks greater than any will ever face become something each of them must chose to accept. As Reece Roth prepares to meet each of these four in a remote location known as Wells Spring, he has only four days to train them in their prophetic mission if they are willing to believe.

I received, Soul's Gate from James Rubart, compliments of Litfuse Publicity and Thomas Nelson Publishers for my honest review. I've read every single book by James Rubart and think he is a talented author for those that love a little something out of the ordinary in regards to suspense thrillers for Christians. He rates right up there with the greats, Frank Peretti and Ted Dekker and if you love books on spiritual warfare with a biblical twist I haven't read anywhere, you definitely want to pick this one up. This book will change your outlook on intercessory prayer and just how powerful prayer really is. The second book in this series, Memory's Door is slated for release in 2013. I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars.

For more information about Soul's Gate, James L. Rubart, or where to pick up this latest novel, please click on the links below:

You can also find James L. Rubart on Facebook by clicking here. 

You can also find James L. Rubart on his website by clicking here. 

For more reviews on Soul's Gate from the Litfuse Book Tour, please click here. 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Bridge

If you have never read a book by Karen Kingsbury and you love books, you are seriously missing out on a true treasure and a book lover's blessing. This is my third Karen Kingsbury novel and they are all amazing and I don't believe there isn't a great one out there she has written that won't touch your heart and your soul and bring out your emotions.

Her latest book, The Bridge, is no exception. In fact, before you begin this one, grab a box of tissues because you will need it. The story begins with two unique sets of characters, the first, Charlie Barton, owner of the bookstore named the Bridge along with his wife, Donna.

"He called it The Bridge because that was how he felt about books. They connected the past and the present, the present and the future. Books brought people together and gave them a path to worlds they wouldn't otherwise experience. There was another reason too. The bookstore wasn't only Charlie's dream. It was the way to move from the pain of the past to the promise of tomorrow. Forever there would be the tragic and disappointing life before opening the store and the hopeful, fulfilling life after. The store wasn't only called The Bridge. It was the bridge."

For thirty years, they have managed to share their love for books and uniting owners with just the perfect book. In fact, they have a scrapbook filled with such loving and warm sentiments from customers expressing what they found besides a great book at The Bridge. Now due to a recent flood and the economic downturn in people purchasing eBooks over the paper kinds, Charlie isn't sure he can find the money to reopen the store. His wife, Donna feels perhaps God isn't in this one and it's time for Charlie to close up shop and move on. Did God abandon Charlie after all?

Molly Allen and Ryan Kelly both attended college together and became the very best of friends. Working together to encourage one another to pursue their personal dreams in music despite the pressures from family and friends, they spend hours finding solitude, friendship and more in at their time in The Bridge bookstore. It's the one place they can truly be themselves and the love they have for Donna and Charlie is heartfelt and truly one-of-a-kind. In fact, most people who knew Molly and Ryan thought they would get together and be married, but Molly's prestigious family had other pre-arranged plans for her future and that included a marriage to a man named Preston who would run her father's company when he retired. Ryan had a girlfriend waiting on him and a future as well once he finished college, so it seemed like life was preplanned for them both and those plans didn't include one another. Does God have other plans for them after all?

You'll have to read The Bridge which comes out in October this year and trust me, you WON'T want to miss this one. I received The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury compliments of Howard Books, a division of Simon & Schuster Publishers for my honest opinion and LOVED this one. For those of you that love beautiful stories of restoration and hope like It's a Wonderful Life or You've Got Mail, then this will be the perfect book to read! In fact, it would make a wonderful Christmas gift to those those looking for a message of faith and renewal along with a timeless story. This will be a classic and one that will FOREVER be a part of my permanent library! I personally rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars!!!

For more information about The Bridge, Karen Kingsbury and where to preorder a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Karen on Facebook by clicking here.

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Howard Books (October 23, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451647018
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451647013

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Accidentally Amish

"Annie pulled her phone out and touched the screen. The three text messages she ignored the night before were now seven.

THIS IS NOT OVER. " (pg. 22)

Technology software creator and designer, Annie Friesen learns that her boyfriend/lawyer, Rick Stebbins and her business partner, Barnett Paige are attempting to steal her latest software launch and take away her business, she knows she has to do something to protect her investment. She puts up multiple firewalls to prevent Barnett from hacking into the software while she plans to beat them at their own game. What she didn't realize is how desperate they would become to stop her. When Annie makes plans to disappear from Rick, the plans backfire and she finds him attempting to stop her. She manages to jump into the back of a pickup truck just before it departs leaving Rick attempting to find her on foot.

When the truck arrives at its destination, she learns she has arrived at the Amish farm of Rufus Beiler. Hiding in the barn hoping she can make new plans in the morning, she doesn't plan on the barn animals giving away her hiding place. When Rufus discovers her, he allows her to stay in the barn until morning, and offers her a ride into town the next day. When they arrive to meet with Tom, the owner of the pick up truck she stowed away in, she learns that someone has slashed all four of his tires. She discovers through overhearing a conversation between Rufus and Tom, that they believe it's the work of Karl Kramer, a local English contractor that wants to put Rufus out of business because he believes Rufus is a threat to his business. But Rufus refuses to pursue legal action against Karl because that is not the way of the Amish. He believes God will take care of him.

Annie believes that she can help Rufus but he refuses even her offer of help. While she attempts to stay hidden in the town of Westcliff, Colorado, a very small town, until she can locate an attorney who can help her salvage her business from Rick and Barnett, she finds that perhaps there is something to be said for small town life compared to her own busy one. Will she find more than the solution to her business problem in the heart of this small town? Does she in fact have a tie to the Beiler family through her own family history? You'll have to read Accidentally Amish by Olivia Newport to find out.

I received Accidentally Amish compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance and Barbour Publishers for my honest review. This is the first book in the Valley of Choice series and honestly, Olivia had my attention from the very first page. Part suspense fiction and part historical romance, this is a perfect blend of genres to create something that you will want to immerse yourself in and hope the book never ends. To me that's the sure sign of a great book, especially a first in the series. It's like a rich decadent dessert you want to last so you take your time and savor every bit of the story! I easily rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and this is a keeper in my personal library and is on my watch list for upcoming sequels in this series.

For more information about Accidentally Amish, Olivia Newport and where you can pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Olivia Newport on Facebook by clicking here. 

To find more reviews from the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance Tour, please click here.

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Barbour Books (October 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616267127
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616267124
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.4 x 1 inches

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Sugar Fork

A few months back I found a beautiful treasure! To a book lover, one of our greatest treasures is to find an amazing book that transports you as you read it to another time and place. It frees you from the cares of this world and takes you away to live another life. That's just what I found when I read the first book Hazel Creek by Walt Larimore. When I wrote this amazing man to tell him what literal joy his first book brought me, he was flattered, and humbled! He then told me that in the fall of this year, the second book would be released to continue to story of the Randolph girls and the wonderful characters you've come to call friends that live around the Smoky Mountains. This is that treasure!

In the second book by Walt Larimore, Sugar Fork picks up right where Hazel Creek left off. The Randolph girls are now being raised by their Pa, Nate, along with their older sister, Abigail or Abbie since their mom died giving birth to Sarah Beth. Abbie is in the process of being courted by Bobby Lee, the Sheriff's son and also living along the 600 acres of virgin forests that the Randolph's own is the gypsy brother and sister, Daniel and Maria, who are helping their Pa, manage the busy farm and family.

Abbie is working hard at raising her sisters, while her Pa finds that even during the prohibition, sale of moonshine for medicinal purposes is still allowed. So he finds that by working with the local mountain folks, he can earn enough money through transporting it to town of Proctor so he doesn't have to cut down any of his trees on his property to sell to the local lumber company. While Abbie dreams of the day that Bobby Lee will finally propose, things take a turn for the worse when her Pa doesn't return from hunting one day. Two her of family's friends, James and Jonathan Walking Stick, Cherokee Indians, promise Abbie to go looking for him come daylight. Now Abbie worries just what will happen to her, the girls and the farm if something should happen to her father.

The villian's still exist in this town with L.G. Sanders, a foreman hired by Mr. William Calhoun, the towns largest financial contributor and owner of the lumber company. They are still in the planning stages of doing whatever it takes to buy the property from Nate Randolph, but he has no plans on giving up the family farm and forest. Sanders has had it out for Nate since the first book and will make sure he acquires the land in any manner he can, even if it means killing innocent men.

There are new characters introduced in this series, one of which is the new town doctor, Wade Chandler, working as an apprentice of Dr. Andrew Keller, the long time company physician for Calhoun Lumber company. Also the Earnshaws, Candace and Luke, come back to the Randolph farm, who are Abbie's aunt and uncle to see how they can help when tragedy strikes along with the world-famous writer Horace Kephart, who's trying to find a way for the Smoky Mountains to become recognized as a National Park which would preserve the land for future generations and secure the family forests from the likes of the Calhouns!

I received Sugar Fork by Walt Larimore compliments of the author himself along with Howard Books, a division of Simon and Schuster for my honest review. Once again, I've been captivated by a different time and place and fallen in love being a part of the Randolph family . In this wonderful sequel to Hazel Creek, the faith of the entire community will be tested and only a miracle may save them from the ultimate fate. For anyone who loves book series like The Little House on the Prairie, then you will LOVE this series of books. The perfect blend of faith in God and learning to deal with the tragedy's that come with living in 1925 are captured perfectly in this wonderful series I can't wait to share with all my readers. Trust me, once you read the first book, you'll be hooked forever!

I easily rate this one a perfect 5 out of 5 stars and am keeping my fingers crossed that there will be more in this delightful series! I know you'll want to make sure that this one goes on your must reads for the fall! Time to fall in love all over again and see how you would weather the storms that are on the horizon for Abbie and her family!

For more information on this book, the talented Walt Larimore, and where you can purchase a copy of this book or even Hazel Creek to get started, click on the links below:

You can also find Walt Larimore on Facebook by clicking here.

Monday, October 22, 2012


Emma Tupper never imagined when her mother passed away leaving her a ticket to Africa that her life would take unexpected turns she never imagined. As a dedicated lawyer just on the brink of making partner, she faces a choice. If she takes the trip to Africa, she forfeits her partnership with the law firm of Thompson, Price & Clearwater, and has to apply for it next year or she can turn down the trip which is what the lawfirm hopes she will opt for since she is one of their top litigators. She decides to take the trip to Africa as a dying promise to her mother vowing she will return in a month. Her boyfriend/coworker, Craig offers to go with her on the trip, but Emma tells him she has to do this by herself and to provide time to think through where her life is headed.

When she returns from the trip six months later, she learns that everyone assumed she was dead. In a twisted set of circumstances in her trip to Africa, she gets ill and has to be transported to a NGO medical center for care. While recovering there, a massive earthquake hits the country leaving them without communication and transportation for months. Since Emma's illness wasn't reported to her tour guide company, her last known location was in the city of the earthquakes epicenter and she was presumed dead.

Emma doesn't realize the complications of her six-month absence until she returns back to the United States and can't locate her car in the airport parking lot. Assuming nothing out of the ordinary, she takes a cab home and when she attempts to try her key in her apartment, it won't work. As a blizzard sets in that night in New York City, she is out on the street, all the numbers of her contacts are disconnected or she can only leave messages and just spent the last of her cash on the cab fare. Even the ATM machine declines her card. She is about to learn just how much the trip to Africa has changed the life she knew it and will force her to make some hard decisions about what to do next.

I received Forgotten by Catherine McKenzie compliments of William Morrow, a division of Harper Collins Publishers for my honest review. I can't imagine how so many people would assume the worst about Emma and how quickly most of her friends have moved on with their new lives. I really like how Dominic, the man now living in her apartment comes to her aid as the most unlikely of heroes and helps her find her way back to life. Perhaps starting over isn't as bad as she had thought. I rate this one a 4 out of 5 stars and it does contain some profanity which might offend some readers but the premise behind the story is amazing. If you had a chance to start over, would you take it?

For more information about Forgotten, Catherine McKenzie or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Catherine McKenzie on Facebook by clicking here. 

You can also find Catherine McKenzie on her website by clicking here. 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

The Matchmakers of Butternut Creek

In the small town of Butternut Creek, Texas, a group of elderly ladies, known as the Widows have made it their personal challenge to find a suitable wife for the new young pastor, Adam Jordan. The challenge is that most of the young, single women have either married already or there are one or two remaining that don't seem to be interested in Adam at all. But make no mistake, they aren't about to give up, even if it means sitting in the pastor's office every morning to consult with him on his love life. The Widows are the ones in the community who see to it that the food pantry is well stocked, that the sick are ministered to, the fundraisers are successful and most of all oversee the love life of all the town's residents. They have been fairly successful up until now.

When a likely candidate is found in college freshman, Gussie Milton, the Widows get to work making arrangements for the two to have time to get to know one another, to socialize and to see that love is a possibility for them both. But as the Pastor sees it, their plans for him is to attend a Youth Outing over the upcoming weekend, fall in love on Friday, get married and have children on the way by Sunday. Don't this well-meaning ladies know that love takes time? Will they become more of a problem than a solution? Or will Pastor Jordan and Gussie finally see that despite all the well intentions of the Widows, that they only want them to find what they have had until their own husbands passed away. That love is the best treasure on Earth or at least in Butternut Creek.

I received The Matchmakers of Butternut Creek by Jane Myers Perrine compliments of Faith Words, a division on Hachette Book Groups for my honest review. I honestly felt sorry for Pastor Adam Jordan most of the time, because these elderly ladies with the best of intentions didn't realize how much they were actually interferring in the process for Adam and Gussie to see qualities in one another that would inspire their own feelings to follow. It seemed like every time Adam turned around the Widows were waiting for him in his office to grill him over what he had done, how he was feeling and probing for all the intimate details. Their desire for him to experience love and marriage like they had, seemed to overlap Adams own need for a personal life in finding his own happiness. It was delightful, warm-hearted and truly a novel that was fun to read. I kept thinking of the ring leader of the Widows, Miss Birdie as the actress Shirley McLane or Olympia Dukakis! Funny how that happens. If you love small town contemporary love stories with a bit of humor, you'll want to pick this one up. I rate it a 4 out of 5 stars. The Matchmakers of Butternut Creek picks up where the first book The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek leaves off.

For more information about The Matchmakers of Butternut Creek, Jane Myers Perrine, or where to preorder a copy of this book due out on November 20th, please click on the links below:

You can also find Jane Myers Perrine on Facebook by clicking here. 

You can learn more about Jane Myers Perrine on her website and stay up with the latest on The Tales of Butternut Creek!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Kiss of Death

"Every person, no matter their circumstances, past, or the evil they have done can be redeemed by God through the blood of Christ. In the end, the blood is all that matters." ~ Author Debbie Viguie'

In the second book in the Kiss Trilogy, Kiss of Death picks up where her debut novel Kiss of Night left off. This is a wonderful and in my personal opinion a well-written alternative to those Twilight fans, who are looking for a Christian alternative. As Debbie discusses what made her write this novel and if in fact it's possible to write a Christian vampire novel, she shares that, "Yes, I can, and I believe others should write them as well."

The Kiss trilogy is a redemption story. As Christians we believe that even the most evil of people can still be reached and saved by the love of God and the sacrifice of Christ. I enjoy, as many Christians do, the fantasy genre. It helps make hard themes easier and less depressing to deal with than straight drama. It would have been simple to write a redemption story with a mass murderer as the lead character but it would not be a story I would want to read. By taking the mass murderer and instead calling him a vampire it helps you hold the fiction at arm's length and tell yourself "it's just a story."

The Kiss of Death is about a vampire by the name of Raphael who is desperately trying to find a way to bring a sense of purpose and redemption to his own life. While he can't change who he is as a vampire, he believes he can still do the right thing and help battle against his own kind who are seeking to destroy the world and begin a war of evil with Richelieu as the head of the vampire army. Now it seems his goal is to locate the ancient religious artifacts, like the crown of thorns, the nails... that contain the blood of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. The Bible said that you're not supposed to eat or drink the blood of any creature, because the life of the creature resides in the blood. By taking the blood of the creature into yourself, you make its life, its spirit, a part of you. That's why there are so many prohibitions against drinking blood in the Old Testament. Blood is life, it's strength and the power and spirit, and the blood of Jesus, the son of God, was enough to atone for the sins of all mankind. It's the most powerful blood that ever has been.

Now Susan Lambert, whose destiny is has been to help in the wage against the evil coming works with her cousin Wendy, a friend David alongside three vampires, Raphael, his sire, Gabriel and their friend Paul to stop Richelieu from obtaining the artifacts and prevent them from obtaining the blood of Jesus Christ. They will use all the weapons necessary to stay alive and stay ahead of the game. There is a diary that Gabriel entrusts to Susan to read that will show them how it had all come to this point and hopefully within its contents, the secret to winning against Richelieu will be revealed.

I received Kiss of Death by Debbie Viguie' compliments of Faith Words, a division of Hachette Book Groups for my honest opinion. I inhaled her first book and was more than thrilled when I got the opportunity to review this one as well. I have to say these novels have captivated me from the very first page and the historical detail that Debbie creates for Gabriel and Raphael breathes life into them and makes them seem real. I love the inner struggle that both Gabriel and Raphael feel when they work against their inner temptations to go back into their vampire habits, and instead do whatever it takes to find redemption in doing good. I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and think it's a MUST READ for fans of the Twilight series as a Christian alternative.

For more information on Kiss of Death, Debbie Viguie' or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can find Debbie Viguie' on Facebook by clicking here. 

You can also visit Debbie's website directly by clicking here.

  • Publisher: FaithWords
  • List Price: $14.99
  • Pages: 320
  • Physical Dimensions: 5-1/4" x 8"
  • ISBN-13: 9780446570848

Friday, October 19, 2012

Guest Post from Charlotte Hubbard - Author of Autumn Winds


 Goats by Charlotte Hubbard

You wouldn’t think inspiration for an Amish novel would come from a trip to Lowe’s, but that’s exactly where the idea for the four little goats—and then the two maidel aunts—in AUTUMN WINDS came from!

You see, I was hanging around Lowe’s waiting for my husband to find his home improvement stuff, just gawking at the book and magazine rack to kill time. I was partway into writing this book about Miriam Lantz and her wonderful new love, Ben Hooley . . . wondering how on earth they were going to get Bishop Hiram Knepp off Miriam’s case, when voila! I spotted a book about raising goats! I didn’t know a thing about goats, and didn’t know how they would play into the story, but instinct told me that if I took that book home I wouldn’t be sorry.

From out of nowhere (which usually means it’s a direct lightning strike from God) I got the idea that goats would be just the diversionary tactic I needed to waylay Hiram’s unwanted attentions—and along with the goats came two old maid school teacher aunts. We all know how you can’t tell those women what to do! And, as it turned out, Hiram Knepp was no match for Jerusalem Hooley and the four little goats she brought him as a gift when she and her sister Nazareth came to Missouri with their nephews, the Hooley brothers.

What followed was sheer magic, and more fun than I’ve ever had with creating characters. From the first moment they appeared on my page, Jerusalem and Nazareth were so alive and so funny—and so outspoken—I knew AUTUMN WINDS wouldn’t be the last story they appeared in. Hiram, too, was more smitten with Jerusalem than he cared to admit . . . enough that he sort of makes a fool of himself. But then, everyone around Miriam is just grateful that the bishop has backed off, while Hiram’s oldest daughters are glad for the way the Hooley aunts take charge of their four youngest sibs as only old schoolteachers can do.

But because Bishop Knepp has been a villain my readers, my editor, and I love to hate, I certainly couldn’t let his attraction to Jerusalem run the easy, satisfying course. Nope. The arrogant bishop of Willow Ridge will dig himself deeper into trouble in WINTER OF WISHES (comes out 9/13) just as Jerusalem and Nazareth have inspired sweet romances with far more worthy men in AN AMISH COUNTRY CHRISTMAS (comes out 10/13).  

So, see? Who knew, when I entered Lowe’s on that ordinary evening about a year ago, that I would be taking home such extraordinary inspiration for many Willow Ridge story lines to come?  I hope you’ll enjoy the Hooley sisters as well as the fine, fun story Ben Hooley creates with Miriam Lantz in AUTUMN WINDS. Isn’t it a wonderful thing when a spirited, forty-year-old widow finds love with an attractive (and rather mysterious) younger man? 

Thanks to Charlotte Hubbard for taking the time out to share with us readers just how Autumn Winds was conceived and giving us insight into what it takes to breath life into a novel!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Autumn Winds

He blew in with the storm.

Miriam Lantz scurried inside and grabbed s sturdy chair from the nearest table. Part of her wanted to call the Brenneman boys - her Rachel's finace', Micah, would be here in two shakes of a tail - yet she craved some time alone with this stranger. She told herself she was giving him a chance to recover before anyone else saw him in this sorry state -

"If ya don't mind my drippin' on your floor, I'll just rest here for a few."

Miriaim jumped. Why wasn't she surprised that the man had already stood himself up and come in without her help? He eased into the chair she'd pulled up.

"I'd ask what ya were doin' here at this crazy hour, in the pitch dark," he murmured as he looked around, "but I guess that's none of my business. I've got to tell ya, though, it smells so gut I must've passed through the pearly gate and into heaven."

Miriam laughed again in spire of her agitated state, "I'm bakin' pies and decoratin' cakes for the bishop's surprise party tomorrow. Gettin' the day's breakfast and lunch started too," she replied. "Welcome to the Sweet Seasons Bakery Cafe'..."

And that's how quickly Miriam Lantz life had changed with the latest storm. Was God perhaps giving her a sign that He had plans for her. Plans to include something other than being the object of Bishop Hiram Knepps design for a future wife and mother of his children? Was God perhaps bringing her hope in the form of Ben Hooley, a traveling blacksmith in search of a place to call home and set up shop?

In the latest novel by Charlotte Hubbard, Autumn Winds is the second book in the Seasons of the Heart Series and picks up right where the Summer of Secrets left off. We see that Miriam is still running the bakery while her daughter Rachel is making plans to marrying Micah. Her remaining daughter Rhoda has plans set on making the newcomer her husband. Even though he is a few years older than her, Rhoda vows to go to any lengths to make sure that Ben Hooley feels right at home, offering to make him his favorite foods as he sets up his blacksmith operation where Miriam's husband, Jesse used to work. Now that she is widowed, she offers the operation to Ben in hopes he might stay, but not to make a future wife for Rhoda, because sparks are already flying between Miriam and Ben.

Bishop Hiram Knepp will go to great lengths to ensure that Miriam becomes his wife, even announcing it in front of the whole community during his birthday celebration as his wish. Will Miriam be forced into a marriage of convenience with Bishop Knepp or will Miriam find happiness in the Autumn Winds with Ben?

I received Autumn Winds compliments of Kensington Books and Pump Up Your Book Tours for my honest review. Charlotte once again delights her readers with some unusual circumstances of being involved in the middle of two men who want to marry her, one for all the wrong reasons and the other for all the right ones. Miriam's biggest obstacle is doing what is right according to her faith while struggling with what her heart wants. She is always putting others needs before her own and at some point she has to realize that happiness and love is waiting for her to simply be willing to take a chance. How will she find a way to keep everyone happy while she searches for her own happiness at the same time? You'll have to read this one to see how it all turns out. There is a sweet surprise at the ending, lots of delicious recipes straight from Miriam's Sweet Seasons Bakery and Cafe. I can't wait to try these myself. I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars.

For more information on Autumn Winds, Charlotte Hubbard and where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also find Charlotte Hubbard on Facebook by clicking here. 

To read more reviews on Autumn Winds from the Pump Up Your Book Tours, click here. 

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Zebra; Original edition (September 4, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1420121707
  • ISBN-13: 978-1420121704
  • Product Dimensions: 6.6 x 4.1 x 1.1 inches

 Don't forget to turn in tomorrow to see what Charlotte Hubbard has to say about how this book came together in my guest post with her!!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Memory Jar

"For so long, she'd taken her memories of Patty - the memories they'd created together - and held them outside of herself, protecting herself from the pain of carrying them deep within. It was as if she carried all the memories in her jars. But if doing so, it was as if she'd also kept everyone else - those still in her life - at arm's length too."

Sarah Shelter knows she is different from most Amish girls. She can quilt but doesn't enjoy it, loves to bake, but doesn't like cooking, and find herself spending most of her time dreaming and wishing of a life she believes God wants for her, but because it might go against what others want for her, she pushes those thoughts back. Instead she spends her time and talents pouring her heart and soul in the baked goods she makes for Annie, her boss at West Kootenai Kraft and Grocery in the heart of the Montana mountains. Her customers can taste all the love she puts into each of her creations and she dreams of sometime owning her own bakery.

When the tragedy of losing her best friend Patty during an accident at the lake, she pushes her hopes and dreams back into herself much like the trinkets she has collected over the years she stores in her memory jars. She can only hope that some day she can find a man who will love the real Sarah that lies bottled up inside waiting for that special someone to unlock her dreams.

Jathan Schrock believes that "There is not a pot so crooked there isn't a lid to fit it. Years ago, Jathan knew he would have tried to pound himself into shape - but he struggles to find a way to express the passion and love he has inside that goes against what he father feels a true Amish man should measure up to and for now, takes so time to head to Montana to hunt and make some money to help his family out during their hard financial times. Yet he doesn't realize how one adventure hiking into the mountains with a group of Amish young adults will change his life forever in both good and bad ways.

In the novel The Memory Jar by Tricia Goyer, the reader is immersed into a different story from any I've read before. The setting of a mountain Amish community is a bit different and LOVE how Tricia incorporated the love of the forests and animals into the adventures and friendship Patty and Sarah share and build, but also one that Jathan and Sarah discover as well. I love Sarah's love for baking and in it she discovers she has a talent that God created in her that is different than most in her Amish community. She finds herself at odds with most in the Amish that believe that Sarah is going to far in her creativity and many find it prideful, but Sarah sees things differently.

I received this novel compliments of Zondervan Publishing and Litfuse Publicity for my honest opinion and love the parallel storylines that take place throughout this book. While Sarah feels she has lost her friendship with Patty forever, she soon discovers that Patty has been with her all along in the things she decides to do once she works past her grief. I love the memory jar concept and have one myself to look back on things that mean a lot to me that happen over the year. This is a beautifully written Amish novel that will inspire and encourage those that have gone through a sense of loss as well as searching for what our life's purpose is. I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and this is one you will definitely want to pick up when it comes out this October. Make sure you preorder your copy today. This is the first book in the Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series and this will be one you'll want to begin and follow.

For more information on The Memory Jar, Tricia Goyer or where to pre-order your copy today, please click on the links below:

You can also stay up to date with the latest from Tricia Goyer, but following her on Facebook.

You can also follow more reviews on The Memory Jar from the Litfuse Book Tour by clicking here. 

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (October 23, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310335108
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310335108

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Shattered Silence

Texas Ranger, Cody Jackson, headed to the town of Durango, Texas for a few reasons. One was to help solve a case involving a fellow Ranger, Al Garcia who was shot while on duty and was now recovering and retiring at the same time. The second reason was to removes his teenage son, Kyle from his stepfather's white supremacist habits and thinking. Since Kyle had recently lost his mother three months ago, he clung to the beliefs that all other races of people were wrong to associate with and began bullying kids in his old high school. Kyle wasn't any bit happy about his dad, Cody taking him far from Houston almost before the school year was out and trying to be a dad now after divorcing his mother three years ago.

But his new job in Durango is about to get interesting as a rise in murders begins to climb to three in four short days, launching Cody into a new working relationship with Durango police officer, Liliana Rodriguez. She has just the right influence to draw the local Hispanic community into talking with her and Cody about the recent crime spree in their usually quiet town. Now on the heels of what could be a serial killer, someone begins burning down all the crime scenes in an effort to hide evidence. Is there a connection between all the murders and recent arson fires in Durango, or is it possibly a Mexican drug cartel who is trying to make sure that Cody and Liliana don't connect all the dots between drug and arms smuggling into Texas?

I received Shattered Silence by Margaret Daley compliments of Pump Up Your Book Tours and Abingdon Press for my honest review. This is the second book in The Men of the Texas Rangers series and I would rate this one a 4 out of 5 stars. This is the story of dealing with issues from the characters pasts in this case especially with Cody and Kyle. Both father and son have to deal with healing their divided relationship that time has worn on to find true forgiveness and second chances for a new life. For Liliana Rodriguez the patterns of her past become something she has to face with an abusive father growing up and now her sister is living with an abusive husband. However this time, Liliana is in a position to do something about it. The ending offers a conclusion you didn't see coming and well worth picking up this series of books.

For more information about Shattered Silence, Margaret Daley, or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can also follow Margaret Daley on Facebook by clicking here. 

To read more reviews on Shattered Silence from the Pump Up Your Book Tour, please click here. 

Queens of the Waves

"A wave of fear washed over Jacquie afresh as she tried to absorb the news.

Father dangled the cigar between his fingers. "I'm delighted about Roland's offer, as you can imagine. I do hope you will be as well. This has been a thoughtful undertaking."

"B-but..." She couldn't seem to manage anything else. The lump in her throat wouldn't allow it.

"He's a good man, and a kind one. I can't deny that the arrangement is advantageous for us all, but I do believe you will settle happily.  He will treat you well and give you a good life. And you will never want for anything. Of this, we can be quite sure." Another puff of the cigar followed on her father's end and then a nod. "Roland has a large home in New York and has just purchased the Willingham estate here in Richmond near the Thames."

"Well, that sounds lovely." Jacquie's mother folded her hands in her lap and sat up a bit straighter.

"Yes." Father grinned. "And what a stroke of luck, marrying a man in the automobile industry. Not only will you have an enviable home, but you will also own the best vehicles in the country."

Jacquie swallowed hard as she thought about how to respond. Of course her father found this news to be delightful. He would. But she could not - would not - marry a man she had no feelings for, especially when her heart remained affixed to another. She forced a smile and fought to quiet her racing heart, fearing it might somehow give her away.

As Jacquie's mother quickly whisked her away to her room to begin making wedding plans as her mother's voice lowered to a whisper as she opened the hatbox and pressed several newspaper clippings into Jacquie's hands. " A new ocean liner is leaving Southhampton in five weeks, headed for New York. Arrangements can be made for you to be onboard when she sails, but we must hurry." She pressed the now empty hatbox onto the shelf.

"W-what? You're sending me to America?" Jacquie shook her head as she started down at the newspaper clippings. A photograph of the RMS Titanic stared back at her. "What are you saying, Mother? Have you and Father planned this as some sort of honeymoon gift?"

Mama shook her head. "I've known for weeks that your father was, well...working on a plan with Mr. Palmer, but I'm not talking about sending you two off on a honeymoon. Not at all. Listen to me. I know the pain of a forced union firsthand. My own father, God rest his soul, made sure I was advantageously matched as well." Her expression hardened. "My daughter will not be painted into that same corner. I would soon die that allow it, trust me." (pg 21).

Her mother learned that Jacquie had fallen in love with their gardener, Peter Bowen, but felt she must leave England on the Titanic and stay in New York with her grandmother. Perhaps there she could find the love she was truly searching for. But how could she leave behind the only man she had ever loved? One thing for sure, she knew she could not go through with her father's plans to marry Roland Palmer.

In the latest novel from Janice Thompson in the American Tapestries series, Queen of the Waves, takes the readers back into a historical fictional romance of 1912 as Jacquie Abingdon attempts to runaway aboard the Titanic to escape the arranged marriage to Roland Palmer without her father's knowledge. When she tells Peter of her plan to include taking him on the trip, he turns down the offer telling her that his family depends on his income to support them. He can't leave them. He does offer Jacquie another option, to send his sister Tessa, who is the same age as Jacquie in her place to escape the abuse from their drunken father. Jacquie agrees and they spend the next two weeks preparing Tessa to take her place onboard the Titanic and provide a way for her to escape as well. How can Tessa Bowen attempt to act like a lady of society when all she has ever known is the life of being a pig farmer's daughter?

The two women make arrangements to meet on the dock to make the switch in boarding passes and tickets and Tessa will go by the name of Jacquie Abingdon and head to New York. Jacquie will send a letter to her grandmother in New York explaining that she could not leave because she wanted to marry Peter, someone her parents would never allow her to marry due to his social status. She knew her grandmother would take Tessa in and would send along her lady's maid, Iris to help Tessa as needed. Little did Jacquie know what would later happen and how all their lives would change forever in ways none of them could ever prepare for.

I received Queen of the Waves compliments of Summerside Press and Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. I've been a huge fan of the Titanic when it first came to the big screen and it really interested me to know more about the lives of so many who boarded the fateful ship that day in hopes of a new life in America only to have so many never make it. When the opportunity came up to review this novel, I knew I would instantly want to read it and in the process LOVE the characters that Janice Thompson breathed to life in the pages of her novel. You feel the emotional anguish between Tessa and Jacquie's choices to make their lives their own through choices neither of them felt they could make. In a twist of fate, one would find love and the other pain beyond belief but in the end, healing would come to them all. I rate this novel a 5 out of 5 stars. For those of you that love romantic novels about the Titanic, then this one is a MUST READ for you!

For more information about Queen of the Waves, Janice Thompson, or where you can pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can find Janice Thompson on Facebook, by clicking here. 

To read more reviews on Queen of the Waves from the Litfuse Book Tour, please click here. 

Celebrate with Janice by entering to win a Kindle Fire!

One fortunate winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire
  • Where the Trail Ends by Melanie Dobson
  • Queen of the Waves by Janice Thompson
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 17th. Winner will be announced at the American Tapestries Author Chat Facebook Party on 10/18. Connect with authors Janice Thompson and Melanie Dobson for an evening of book chat, trivia and fun! There will also be gift certificates, books, and a Book Club Prize Pack to be won (10 copies for your book club or small group)!

So grab your copy of Queen of the Waves and Where the Trail Ends and join Janice Thompson and Melanie Dobson on the evening of the October 18th for a chance to connect with the authors and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the books – don’t let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 18th!

+ Where the Trail Ends by Melanie Dobson + The Trouble with Cowboys, Denise Hunter + Women Redeemed Live Webcast 2.0 Event (Kregel Publications)

Where the Trail Ends

I remember reading about the Oregon Trail in my history classes in high school, but I never really gave them much thought outside of knowing what it was, how they arrived and why most people came west along with some relevant dates, but until I read, Melanie Dobson's fictional novel, Where the Trail Ends it really shined a whole new meaning to what life was like to those who made the journey west.

This historical fictional novel introduces us to Samantha Waldron and her family, her father and brother Micah who have become one of many families who are moving west along the Oregon Trail before winter settles in. They had hoped to take her mother as well but she died shortly before the trip. All of the duties of cooking, cleaning and taking care of her younger brother, fall on Samantha's shoulders as they make their way west. They have to endure nights without water when no streams or rivers can be found. If they don't make sure their water barrels are full before leaving, they might not have enough to get them from campsite to campsite. The family has to endure a stampede caused when a families dog spooks the oxen killing several members of the wagon train, damaging several wagon and results in the decision of the leader of group, Captain Lowe to kill the remaining dogs to prevent that from occurring again. This means Samantha's beloved dog Boaz is at risk and she will stand up to anyone who wants to kill her dog. Even if that means it puts her at odds with Jack Doyle, a man she has grown quite fond of along the journey and hopes will marry her when they arrive in the Willamette Valley.

Samatha is a strong female who has to face the odds when her father grows ill and she is left behind as she seeks help for him while the others move ahead in their journey. She faces Indians, wild grizzly bears and extreme weather conditions just to make sure her brother is well cared for. When she has to face off against a fierce Wolverine, she is forced into the icy rivers of the Columbia River as they flees for safety in a canoe. Yet when it overturns, will Samantha be able to save her family just as they are about to make the final leg of the journey?

I received Where the Trail Ends by Melanie Dobson compliments of Summerside Press and Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. Being a huge fan of American History I could really relate to the struggles Samantha had to endure just to bring her family through the Oregon trail. She longs for someone to care for her and hopes that love awaits her on the other end. It is through those struggles with hardship that character is defined and truly makes us stronger than we might have ever thought we could be. Samantha has to grow up faster than she would have liked and she is often reminded that she still has a lot to learn about trust along the way. I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and can't wait for more in the American Tapestries series!!!

For more information about Where the Trail Ends, Melanie Dobson, and where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can find Melanie Dobson on Facebook by clicking here. 

To read more great reviews from this book tour on Litfuse, please click here. 

Celebrate with Melanie by entering to win a Kindle Fire!

One fortunate winner will receive:

  • A Kindle Fire

  • Where the Trail Ends by Melanie Dobson

  • Queen of the Waves by Janice Thompson

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 17th. Winner will be announced at the American Tapestries Author Chat Facebook Party on 10/18. Connect with authors Melanie Dobson and Janice Thompson for an evening of book chat, trivia and fun! There will also be gift certificates, books, and a Book Club Prize Pack to be won (10 copies for your book club or small group)!

So grab your copy of Where the Trail Ends and  Queen of the Waves and join Melanie Dobson and Janice Thompson on the evening of the October 18th for a chance to connect with the authors and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the books - don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 18th!

Life with Lily

I've been a huge fan of Christian Amish Fiction for many years now and sometimes it was hard to be able to relate to my youngest daughter how incredible the stories are and what life is like for the Amish people. It's a simple life, one free from complications that arise when you have too much going on in your life or with technology overload. So when the opportunity came along to review, Life with Lily, the first book in The Adventures of Lily Lapp series by Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher, I knew this was the answer I was searching for to get my daughter involved with the love of reading about the Amish through the eyes of a young Amish girl, Lily Lapp.

This is a beautifully illustrated chapter book designed for your child from 3rd grade reading and up to see what Lily Lapp's life is like as she goes through her day. The book is 270 pages designated into 39 easy to read chapters that would make for a perfect bed time story to read to your child. There are chapters that deal with Lily's birthday, how the Amish celebrate Halloween and Christmas, first day at school, what life on an Amish farm is like, the chores Lily has to do and how she deals with farm animals, new friends and interesting people she meets along the way.

For me one of my favorite chapters was "An Unwanted Schoolhouse Visitor" where the school's superintendent, Mr Wilt comes to visit to see what the children are doing. Since Lily's in first grade, she is working on her Learning Through Sounds book in which she is cutting out pictures and gluing them beside the letters that begin with the sound, something she really enjoyed while trying hard not to get distracted by Mr. Wilt as he walks around their one room school house. He had come to ensure that each of the children were learning what they should at their assigned grade levels which Lily passed with flying colors but not all the children did as well as she did. In fact, what Mr. Wilt wanted them to learn wasn't something that the Amish agreed with such as learning about evolution. You'll have to pick up this book to see what happens when the Amish learn about what has been going on at the school.

I received Life with Lily compliments of Litfuse Publicity and Revell Publishers for my honest review. I am absolutely thrilled that my daughter has enjoyed reading this with me and it gives us an opportunity to talk about the lifestyles that some families have that are different from ours. It allows us to interact more and show how truly educational reading can be and how it really brings us together as a family. After we finished, my youngest daughter realized that while something may be different, Lily is a lot more like her than she first thought. They like the same things and they both still have to deal with school! I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars and can't wait to continue the series with my daughter. It's almost like a Little House on the Prairie series but dealing with an Amish girl named Lily instead! It's a heartwarming and charming book to get your child interested in the love of reading.

For more information about Life with Lily, Mary Ann Kinsinger, Suzanne Woods Fisher, or where to pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can find Mary Ann Kinsinger on Facebook by clicking here. 

You can find Suzanne Woods Fisher on Facebook by clicking here. 

“Based upon Kinsinger’s own childhood, it’s reminiscent of the Little House on the Prairie books.” —Romantic Times

Celebrate with Suzanne and Mary Ann by entering their contest and RSVPing to the “Life with Lily” Facebook Author Chat Party on 10/16!

Two fortunate winners will receive:

  • Either the new Kindle Fire or new Nook HD

  • Signed copy of Life with Lily for you and a young reader in your life.  

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 15th. Winner will be announced at the Life with Lily Author Chat Facebook Party on 10/16. Connect with authors Suzanne Woods Fisher and Mary Ann Kinsinger for an evening of book chat, Q&A about Mary Ann’s Amish childhood, trivia, and fun! There will also be gift certificates, books, and other fun prizes!

So grab your copy of Life with Lily and join Suzanne and Mary Ann on the evening of the October 16th for a chance to connect with the authors and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the books – don’t let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 16th!