A Cherished Betrothal Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Cherished Betrothal

Author: Denise Weimer

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: January 23, 2024

He rescued her once, but a chance at love will require the ultimate sacrifice.

Alexander Morris bears the childhood scars of the Long Canes massacre that killed his brother and father. Forced by his dark past into the lonely life of Georgia Ranger, Alexander joins the bordering South Carolina Rangers in their revolt against the Crown. When he’s posted to the fort erected to defend the community once decimated by the massacre, duty demands he court the loyalty of his sworn enemies, the fierce Cherokee warriors.

Elspeth Lawrence never forgot the boy who sacrificed himself for her at Long Canes—any more than she forgot the younger sister taken captive. She’s learned not only to forgive, but also to help minister to the Cherokees at her father’s mission. When Alex Morris arrives at nearby Fort Charlotte, Elspeth finds her memories—and her emotions—stirred. He doesn’t even remember her…or the long-ago attack. But the bitterness that simmers just beneath his stoic exterior—as well as her courtship by a local landowner—challenge their undeniable bond.

When Alex uncovers a long-held secret and a plot to sabotage patriot talks with the Cherokees, he must choose between his desire for revenge and his love for the girl he rescued long ago.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you should know:

A Cherished Betrothal is Christian Historical Fiction by Denise Weimer. It is the third book in the Scouts of the Georgia Frontier Series.  It is set in the 1775 Frontier of South Carolina and Georgia and can be read as a standalone. This book features Elspeth Lawrence, the daughter of a pastor and Georgia Ranger Alexander Morris.

 

What you might need to know:

This book tries to give an authentic portrayal from a settler’s perspective, it does include both conflict with Native Americans and hostility between the Patriots and the Loyalists. It gives a brutal look at wartime violence.

 

What I think about this book:

This was such a fascinating book. I appreciate how the author showed the strength and fortitude that was required to survive in the wilds of the colonies. It was very interesting to read the book from the perspective of Elspeth whose father, a pastor, tried not to take sides and instead tried to show God’s love to all people. Alex was a very realistic character, he had lost so much, but grew as a character and a man during this  book. As a South Carolina native, genealogy and history buff, I loved this book, the places were familiar to me and the people could have been my ancestors. I can’t wait to read more in the series .

 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Celebrate Lit, this in no way influenced my review. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

North Georgia native Denise Weimer has authored over a dozen traditionally published novels and a number of novellas—historical and contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and time slip. As a freelance editor and Acquisitions & Editorial Liaison for Wild Heart Books, she’s helped other authors reach their publishing dreams. A wife and mother of two daughters, Denise always pauses for coffee, chocolate, and old houses.

 

 

 

 

More from Denise

That Event That Changed You Forever: The Backstory Catalyst of A Cherished Betrothal

Most of us can pinpoint it—a moment in time that forever altered us and the course of our lives. Maybe it was a place. Or a person. For good or bad, we can never go back to who we used to be. The good or bad depends on how we react to that moment, place, or person, doesn’t it? Whether we allow God to make us more like Him because of it.

Both the hero and heroine of my third novel in the Scouts of the Georgia Frontier, A Cherished Betrothal, live with such a moment. Experts in book plotting say our characters should have a dark moment in their backstory. For Alex Morris and Elspeth Lawrence, the Long Canes Massacre of 1760 is that dark moment. Together, they survived the attack of around a hundred Cherokee braves on a group of settlers fleeing across the South Carolina border into Georgia. Alex lost his father and brother, Elspeth her mother while her younger sister was taken captive. With the resilience of the Scots-Irish who formed a barrier between the colonies and the Native Americans, the Long Canes settlers returned to the border of South Carolina later that same year.

A Cherished Betrothal actually begins in 1775, with the South Carolina backcountry on the brink of revolution. Since the childhood attack, Alex has lost his sense of home. He draws his identity from his service as a Georgia and South Carolina Ranger (yes, this tale veers over the border into South Carolina and the fascinating history around the town of Ninety Six) and waits for the opportunity for revenge. He keeps his anger carefully banked, just as Elspeth hides her fear—especially when she has to face warriors who visit the mission for Cherokee children she runs with her minister father. She’s forgiven her enemies, but she can no more prevent her knees knocking upon sight of the braves than she can forget the boy who saved her life fifteen years ago.

It seems God has answered her prayers when Alex shows up at nearby Fort Charlotte. Only…he doesn’t remember her…or the dark moment that shaped both of their histories. Between Elspeth’s not-so-gentle pressure, a Cherokee boy Alex can’t shake as a shadow, and his commanders’ determination to court the Cherokees as allies for the Patriot cause, Alex is forced to look his past in the eye.

Pivoting between Fort Charlotte, the mission school, and the town of Ninety Six where Elspeth’s wealthy Loyalist admirer helps stir conflict, including the first battle of the Revolution in South Carolina, A Counterfeit Betrothal is a tale of unshakeable love and soul-deep healing. I loved this story so much when I was writing it, I wanted to move into Colonial Ninety Six. I hope you will too!

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 13

Blossoms and Blessings, February 14

Pause for Tales, February 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 15

Texas Book-aholic, February 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 17

Holly’s Book Corner, February 18

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, February 19 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, February 19

Life on Chickadee Lane, February 20

lakesidelivingsite, February 20

Cover Lover Book Review, February 21

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 23

Books You Can Feel Good About, February 24

Simple Harvest Reads, February 25 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, February 26

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Denise is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/2a0cd/a-cherished-betrothal-celebration-tour-giveaway

Torch Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Torch

Author: Sofia Simpson

Genre: Young Adult Christian Fantasy

Release Date: February 6, 2024

Relentlessly pursued by the Extremists, Vela and Linc embark on a perilous journey toward a hidden Elemental community in the Canadian mountains. It’s a place where couples of different elements thrive, raising families while living off the grid.

These Elementals, like the Extremists, are searching for the portended Chosen Child,  the one who will unite the clans. Vela is forced to accept she might be a part of this prophecy whether she likes it or not.

Vela is more than intrigued by a mixed Elemental in the community who single-mindedly pursues her. Faced with a choice between two very different men makes committing to Linc as her Intended harder than she imagined.

Can Linc win the fight for her heart? Will this prophecy be her undoing or the Elementals’ salvation?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Sofia grew up moving constantly. Never in one place more than three years, there was plenty of time to daydream during long car rides. College finally gave her a chance to study what she had always dreamed of doing, writing her stories.

She obtained a B.A. in Journalism, married her handsome husband and had two amazing sons.

A big believer in dreaming big, Sofia loves speaking to youth, encouraging them to find hope no matter what their life looks like. Sofia is a daughter of the Lord first and foremost and finds inspiration with the stories like King David and Esther.

More from Sofia

This book has been my absolute favorite to write. I switched my POV to first person, and it made all the difference in the world as far as getting into my character’s head. I’ve been so intimidated in writing in first person POV, so I’m so happy I went out on a limb and tried it. The story flowed so easily once I did! I wrote the first draft of this book in 10 weeks! I got on an intense writing schedule, stuck to it and voila! Out popped this book.

I loved every minute of it, especially the researching part. Researching how to live off the grid was fascinating to me, and it couldn’t have been more interesting. It really made me understand how people lived without modern conveniences. Well, in my book, they lived with modern conveniences thanks to generators and the Elementals’ gifts and abilities, but they had to make their own soap, butter, cheese, sometimes, clothes. I learned how a toilet can work thanks to gravity and setting up the pump on a hill. It’s all fascinating to me and I hope everyone finds it fun to learn, too, all while a great story unfolds!

The following recipe was so neat, I had to include it! And, yes, it’s in the book. They had to cook bread without an oven, so this worked nicely so they could still enjoy some fresh cooked bread.

This recipe was copied from the following link from Veganonboard.com:

Campfire Bread on a Stick Recipe – Vegan on Board

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp dried yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 ½ cups (300 g) flour
  • ⅞ cup (200 ml) warm water
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt

Dough:

  • In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients into a moist dough. No need to knead!
  • Cover the bowl and let the dough rise in a warm place until it has doubled in size – about 1 hour.
  • With floured hands, briefly ‘knock back’ the dough by making it into a ball.
  • Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and divide into 8 pieces.

Shaping your breadsticks:

  • Start by stretching the dough into a strip and then roll it into a long sausage shape.
  • Twist a strip around the end of your sticks. Pinch the dough together to secure the end if necessary.

Cooking Over a Campfire:

  • Either hold or prop up your stick over the fire.
  • Choose a spot over hot embers for best results.
  • Keep rotating until all sides are browned.
  • Enjoy your freshly baked bread!

Interview with the Author

What does success as an author look like to you?

I’m a success as an author when I have someone read my book and say it encouraged them, especially in their faith. I want more than a feel-good book. I want a book that someone can take away and use in their life. That sounds like a non-fiction book, I know, but I feel like I learn more from a fiction book than I would from a non-fiction book. I find situations characters face are so relatable.

Which character did you connect to best in this book?

I have a minor character, Hannah, in Torch, that said and did things I would say and do. I hope I’m like her, at any rate. She’s a loving mother who loves to laugh and encourage. I wrote her from my heart and wish to be like her.

3)Which part of the book was the most difficult to write?

There’s a childbirth scene I sobbed over as I wrote it. There’s a woman who is way overdue in her pregnancy. Gyans, in my book, are natural healers, but the Gyan midwife can help with some things in labor, but not everything. The labor goes wrong, and they lose the baby’s heartbeat and they have to do drastic measures to save the life of the baby. (don’t worry, the baby is fine in the end). This scene reminded me so much of my first labor that it brought back all those intensely stressful moments.

What is your favorite Bible verse or life verse?

John 3:16. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him will have everlasting life.

This was the first verse I learned as a child, and I carried it with me in all the darkest times of my childhood. As an adult, I learned more about my faith and added to that verse, memorizing more that will help me walk in my faith. I feel this verse is the backbone to my faith, and it entirely rests on this Scripture.

What are you reading right now?

Suspended in the Stars by E.A. Hendryx. It’s a YA Science Fantasy that I absolutely love! This author writes it all, but this is my first book I’ve read of hers but it won’t be my last.

Blog Stops

Artistic Nobody, February 15 (Author Interview)

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 16

Guild Master, February 17 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 17

Texas Book-aholic, February 18

Fiction Book Lover, February 19 (Author Interview)

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 20

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 21 (Author Interview)

Pause for Tales, February 22

Simple Harvest Reads, February 23 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 24

A Reader’s Brain, February 25 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, February 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 26

Through the Fire Blogs, February 27 (Author Interview)

Blogging with Carol, February 28

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sofia is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and 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/29dba/torch-celebration-tour-giveaway

Refuge of Grace Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Refuge of Grace: Finding Your Safe Place

Author: Tracy L. Smoak

Genre: Non-Fiction

Release Date: September, 2023

“This book is a life-saving manual meant for any soul who has bottomed out and can only look up for help.”
— George Firehammer

Need a stronger connection with God? A safe place?

Anyone hoping for straight talk to bring Jesus close will find refreshment in Refuge of Grace. Learn from a fresh look at 22 little-told Bible passages via Tracy L. Smoak’s engaging storytelling and vivid imagery.

These scriptures offer true comfort in your everyday struggles. From hearing Gomer’s perspective about shame to imagining Jesus arriving in a Rolls Royce for the family reunion, you will know God’s working on your behalf-right now.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

A native Floridian, Tracy L. Smoak grew up riding horses and climbing citrus trees. Her passion is to encourage others in their faith journey. Smoak writes for Guideposts. Ambassador International released her debut novel, Who Brought the Dog to Church?. Bold Vision published her Bible study about encouragement titled Refuge of Grace: Finding Your Safe Place.

She loves photography and authored two hardcover devotionals with her original nature art (Living Water to Refresh Your Soul – tranquil lake scenes; and Arranged with Love– floral landscapes).

Smoak holds a master’s in Education and a bachelor’s in Communication. At her church home, she leads small-group Bible studies. She is an active member of Word Weavers International.

More from Tracy

When life knocks you down, where do you go for hope?

We all want to be brave, but sometimes circumstances overwhelm us. Health declines, bank accounts empty, and friends disappear. No matter the disappointments, one absolute certainty we can count on is God. He will stand with us through every adversity.

Ideas for Refuge of Grace: Finding Your Safe Place began at 3 a.m. on a January workday in 2021. I tossed and turned in bed, wondering how I could continue teaching in a public school under all the pandemic constraints. We wore masks, developed lesson plans for both in-class instruction and online modules, and juggled a revolving door of student quarantines with absences.

Fear surrounded us on all sides.

Others also struggled. My older son managed an emergency department in a large city and had to find ways to supply unprecedented needs. My younger son worked in the financial industry and watched markets reel. Neighbors lost jobs and income.

How could we model resilience and move forward?

I turned to the Bible for inspiration and studied stories about how believers overcame hardship. Six months and 22 chapters later—all the while teaching full time—this collection renewed hope and kept me going.

My prayer is that reading these Bible promises of God’s faithfulness also will empower you.

Interview with the Author

1)What does success as an author look like to you?

At first, I thought getting a contract from a publisher was the ticket. Then I hoped to survive the rounds of editing. Now, I take delight when readers reach out and share how a passage spoke to them.

2)Which chapter was the most difficult to write?

The chapter “He Loves You Still” is told from Gomer’s point of view. I cried and cried while writing that because I remembered all the dumb and shameful things done in college, yet God never gave up on me.

3)What inspired this book?

I was full of fear! The 2020 pandemic brought into question all that seemed secure. Could medicine save us? Would the economy hold? Would I have a job? If I kept my job, would I be able to adapt to the new technology required to perform. I wanted to find God in the midst of the upheaval and walk forward with bravery.

4)What is your vacation spot?

Going to a tropical beach always delights me. I love the soft white sand with palm trees dancing. Seeing sunlight skip across waves helps me unwind.

5)What are you reading right now?

Irish folk tales, Palestinian history, a suspense novel, and a nonfiction about the science of breakthroughs

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 9

Artistic Nobody, February 10 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 12

Fiction Book Lover, February 13 (Author Interview)

Girls in White Dresses, February 14

Its Mama Safe, February 15

Beauty in the Binding, February 16 (Author Interview)

By The Book, February 17 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, February 17

Cover Lover Book Review, February 18

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, February 19 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 20

Simple Harvest Reads, February 21 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Tracy is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy each of Who Brought the Dog to Church? and Refuge of Grace: Finding Your Safe Place!!

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/29c57/refuge-of-grace-celebration-tour-giveaway

Leading Ladies Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Leading Ladies: Discover Your God-Grown Strategy for Success

Authors: Amber Weigand-Buckley & Lisa Burris Burns

Genre: Christian Leadership and Religious Leadership

Release Date: May 25, 2023

SISTERS, IT’S TIME TO GET DOWN TO BUSINESS!

Find out how to step up to God’s calling as these daring women redefine what leadership looks like. Authentic and heartfelt stories of world-changing women leaders of every hue, background, and job description, teach us by example how to battle to find our passion, connect with our gifts, and maintain forward-focused momentum in every season of life.

Join authors Amber Weigand-Buckley and Lisa Burris Burns — along with Babbie Mason, Candace Payne, Jacquelyn Marushka, Martha Bolton, Katy Nichole, Kymberlie Joye, and so many more powerhouse women–as they explore leadership purpose, and living a life that counts.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Authors

Meet Amber

Amber Weigand-Buckley is an author, speaker, multi-award-winning magazine editor, and art director, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (awsa.com) marketing director, Bold Vision Books’ creative director, and owner of #barefacedcreativemedia (barefacedcreativemedia.com). The Springfield, Missouri native navigates bipolar and anxiety disorder while embracing her best life. At its peak, her mental illness almost caused her to take her own life. Amber is a mental health advocate who knows that a diagnosis does not disqualify you from God’s leadership call.Amber, whose vision birthed Leading Ladies: Discover Your God-Grown Strategy for Success, is energized by helping world-changing women of all hues, backgrounds, and walks of life to find their wings, hone their skills, and take their God-call to the next level.

She has two grown daughters, Saffron, Imogen, and one teen Penelope, with Philip, her British hubby of 28 years, two Great Pyrenees pups—Stanley and Stuart, and a zoo of exotic pets.

Meet Lisa

The diagnosis of an autoimmune disorder initially shattered LISA BURRIS BURNS’ ministry dreams as a vocalist and worship leader. Despite this, God opened opportunities for her journey and abilities to expand beyond what she ever anticipated for herself — to acting, stage performance, set design, and writing. As a vocal and performance coach with K.C. Superstar, a Kansas City-based competition likened to “American Idol,” she is passionate about fine-tuning artists’ creative expressions. Lisa thrives on the artistic process, especially everything yarn and crafty.

This avid Kansas City Chiefs fan lives with her husband, Randy, in Blue Springs, Missouri. The Burns have served in marriage and family ministry since 1988. They have six fantastic children, two amazing son-in-loves, and five adorable granddaughters.

More from Amber and Lisa

Are you ready to discover your God-given gifts and move in forward in all that He’s called you to be? Leading Ladies: Discover Your God-Grown Strategy for Success will help you identify your unique leadership abilities.

For a limited time, get the inspirational song “Lead Me On” recorded by Michaelah Weaver for FREE when your register as a Leading Ladies VIP at leadingladies.life.

Let “Lead Me On” be your empowering anthem as you read Leading Ladies and learn to boldly walk in your purpose. Download the song and book excerpt now at leadingladies.life!

Interview with the Authors

1)What does success as an author look like to you?

Lisa: I would have to say that being true to who created me, and how he has equipped me, is to be successful. I don’t have to strive for what others have or are called to do.

Amber: Success, for me, is doing what God has called you to do—whether perceived as success or failure. Obedience, even in lack, invites miracles.

2)Which chapter was the most difficult to write?

Lisa: The last…my own!

3)What inspired this book?

Lisa: My co-author Amber says that it started with a question, “Do you recognize the gifts I’ve placed within you—and how I’ve equipped YOU to lead?”

4)Which author influenced you the most?

Amber: While working on the book, Tracy Glass, the author of Chapter 2, threw a curveball: “Are you afraid to lead boldly because you are afraid to stand out or are you ashamed of your story?” It hit home—I was still grappling with shame. Another contributor, Veronica Clay, opened my eyes to a new understanding of rest.

5)What is your favorite Bible verse or life verse?

Lisa: Philippians 3:12-14 has been especially important to me as we’ve traveled the past 2 years with the book, and I just keep coming back to it. There were moments that Amber and I both were pressed beyond what we thought we were capable of. While we knew God was present every step, we also felt the stretching of those moments. It was so good  of God to use us! Philippians 3:12-14 has continued to help in spite of my insecurities and inadequacies … Forget the past, look forward,and keep going!

Amber: Romans 4:17-18 aligns with our book’s theme—God calls things into being that weren’t. He turns pain into purpose, brokenness into healing, sorrow into joy. As we walk by faith, like Abraham, God transforms us, writing incredible stories. This verse embodies the hope I share through our book, Leading Ladies, and all I do. In moments of feeling stuck, God revives our dreams and reveals our calling—often unexpectedly.

6)What would you like your readers to get out of this book?

Lisa: That they will be inspired to walk more fully in the knowledge of who they are in Jesus.

7) What is your vacation spot?

Lisa: I’m not sure that I’m a very good vacationer! I do have a really special place owned by dear friends on a lake in southern Missouri that brings me a great deal of peace and the ability to breathe deeply. It’s a place that I can go to re-charge and rest emotionally, mentally and physically.

8)What are you reading right now?

Lisa: I just started the new Jackie Hill Perry devotional Upon Waking, and Ann Voskamp’s Waymaker

Amber: I’m rereading the new issue of Leading Hearts magazine before it goes to print. As the editor and art director, I have to read it at least a dozen times, then I rest my eyes for the rest of the day.

9)What is your most well-loved and well-used house appliance?

Lisa: My Ninja coffee  maker is my best friend!

Amber: My trusty panini press for killer grilled cheese. Also, the gas fire pit for toasting marshmallows and the blackstone griddle for hibachi – not that committed in winter, though.

Blog Stops

Godly Book Reviews, February 16

Artistic Nobody, February 17 (Author Interview)

Fiction Book Lover, February 18 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 18

Simple Harvest Reads, February 19 (Author Interview)

She Lives to Read, February 20

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 21 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 22

Beauty in the Binding, February 23 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 24

For the Love of Literature, February 25 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 26

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 27 (Author Interview)

Cover Lover Book Review, February 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 28

A Reader’s Brain, February 29 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, Amber and Lisa are giving away the grand prize package of a copy of the book and a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/2a0cf/leading-ladies-celebration-tour-giveaway

Dial V for Valentine Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Dial V for Valentine

Author: Linda Shenton Matchett

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release Date: February 14, 2022

Valentine’s Day is perfect for a wedding. If only the bride will agree.

Being part of the military is not just a job for Fergus Rafferty, it’s a calling. He’s worked his way up the ranks and doing what he loves best: flying Apache helicopters. The only thing that will make his life complete is marrying Celeste. After he transfers to a unit scheduled to deploy in three months, he’s thrilled at the idea of marrying before he leaves so they can start their new life. Except Celeste wants to wait until he returns. Can he convince her to wed before he leaves?

Celeste Hardwicke has just opened her law practice when she finally accepts Fergus’s marriage proposal. Not to worry. She has plenty of time to set a date, then plan the wedding. Until she doesn’t. But a quickie wedding isn’t what she has in mind. Besides, why get married when the groom will ship out after the ceremony? When she stumbles on her great-grandmother’s diary from World War II, she discovers the two of them share the same predicament.

At an impasse, Celeste and Fergus agree to call into WDES’s program No Errin’ for Love. Will DJ Erin Orberg’s advice solve their dilemma or create a bigger divide? One they’ll both regret.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Linda Shenton Matchett writes about ordinary people who did extraordinary things in days gone by. A native of Baltimore, Maryland, she was born a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry (of Star-Spangled Banner fame) and has lived in historical places all her life. She is a volunteer docent and archivist at the Wright Museum of WWII and a former trustee for her local public library. She now lives in central New Hampshire where she explores the history of this great state and immerses herself in the imaginary worlds created by other authors.

More from Linda

My mom was born on February 14th, so when I was growing up, Valentine’s Day wasn’t about romance and falling in love. Instead, it was a celebration of my mother. When I was asked to participate in the multi-author project, You are on the Air, I was hesitant to accept because of having little connection to the holiday and the books in the series are contemporary romance. I primarily write historical romance. But I loved the concept: the stories revolve around couples who call into a Christian radio station for relationship advice. I spent about two weeks mulling over (and discarding) ideas, then I realized the plot was right in front of me.

I had just finished putting together an exhibit with the curator at the museum where I volunteer. One of the display items was a wedding gown made from a parachute. Included with the dress was a photograph of the couple, and their names and wedding date, but nothing else. The lack of information got my mind going, and I wondered about their story. Why did they wait until the end of the war to marry? Why not wed before the groom shipped out? Did they regret waiting? I realized that members of today’s armed forces might deal with the same situation and decided to combine the two plot lines. (See? I can’t leave my historical roots behind!)

In Dial V for Valentine, Celeste and Fergus struggle with the sacrifice that comes with true love. Not the you-can-have-the-last-cookie kind of love, but a love that puts another’s needs and wants above one’s own. What they learn is that we can only love successfully when we understand that love comes from God. We are capable of loving (mates, significant others, friends and the unlovely) because “He first loved us.” Love is an emotion, but it is also an act of obedience.

Interview with the Author

Which character did you connect to best in this book? 

I related to Celeste in her situation. During college, I was very intent on getting my degree so I could begin my career. I got engaged in December of my junior year, but by March of my senior year was having second thoughts about getting married. Each time I discussed my concerns with my parents, they pushed back and insisted that I go through with the wedding. The more I talked about it, the more they balked. Like Celeste, I felt battered from all sides and that that situation was out of my control.

 

What inspired this book? 

I volunteer as a docent at the Wright Museum of WWII and had the honor of working with the curator to create an exhibit called “Shaped by Conflict” that highlighted objects from WWII that were crafted from combat items such as trench art (e.g., an ash tray constructed from a machine gun shell) and a parachute transformed into a wedding dress. During my research for the exhibit, I learned about women who chose to wed during the war because they wanted to be married in case their husband didn’t return from the war. Other women waited to marry afterwards for the same reason.

I was asked to be part of the You are on the Air which is a contemporary series. Because I write historical novels, I was hesitant to say yes. The coordinator suggested I tie in a historical plot line, and the idea of a wedding dress being handed down came to mind. That prompted the thought of being engaged to a military man and what if he was suddenly called up. The plotline solidified into two women, generations apart, who have to decide when/if to marry their military men.

 

Which author influenced the you most? 

It is hard to select just one, so if you’ll indulge me, I’ll pick two!  During my early writing years, Elizabeth Camden influenced the idea of selecting protagonists in unusual jobs for their era. Also, the way she weaves historical information into the story, educating the reader without making it dry or textbookish. More recently, Heather Blanton’s ability to create complex characters and share the message of salvation in her stories has impacted my work.

 

What are you reading right now? 

I recently purchased Michelle Griep’s Bow Street Runners trilogy which is fantastic. I’ve finished book 1 Brentwood’s Ward and have just started The Innkeeper’s Daughter. I’m also researching Britain’s Channel Islands during WWII, so am reading Islands in Danger by Alan and Mary Wood.

 

Describe your view as you’re sitting in your writing chair.  

My office windows face our backyard which is heavily treed which almost gives me a feeling of being outside. As the seasons change, so does my view. In spring and summer, the forest is a canopy of varied shades of green. In the fall, it is alive with reds, oranges, and golds, and in winter skeletal trees and the stone wall are snow-covered. Deer often wander through, and there is a lot of bird life. Twice, I’ve seen a barred owl in the oak tree just outside the window.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 14

Texas Book-aholic, February 15

Simple Harvest Reads, February 16 (Author Interview)

She Lives To Read, February 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 18

Artistic Nobody, February 19 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, February 19

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 20

For Him and My Family, February 21

Fiction Book Lover, February 22 (Author Interview)

Holly’s Book Corner, February 23

Back Porch Reads, February 24 (Author Interview)

Karen Baney Reviews, February 24

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 25

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, February 26 (Author Interview)

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, February 27 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Linda is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Visa Gift Card and 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/29db9/dial-v-for-valentine-celebration-tour-giveaway

Water’s Break Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Water’s Break

Author: Sophia Hansen

Genre: YA sci-fi

Release Date: January 9, 2024

What if fear itself is the deadliest undercurrent of all?

Nica would do anything to avoid the hassles of her sister’s bonding ceremony—the wrap fittings, hairstyles, and braided fire coral—but she never imagined that the waters covering her planet would be broken. As the heavens rained fire and stone, mountains erupted from the sea and dry ground was birthed on the Deep, dividing the water—and the Olomi people—for the first time in their history.

In the wake of her world’s violent re-formation, Nica’s family is shattered. When the rookie Guardian leaves the safety of the Deep to find her sister, she is abducted by strange landwalkers who possess strength and technology beyond her imagination. Nica realizes that the disaster from above was by their design—a calculated plan to terraform the water planet and conquer her people. All Nica wants to do is find her sister and swim home to safety, but with the landwalkers closing in, escape may not be possible. And if Nica can’t save herself, how can she hope to save her sister—or her people?

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy

This debut novel by Sophia Larsen takes us into a deep underwater world where community thrives with love and security. When land dwellers arrive to colonize and save their own dying race, the waters break and the people of the water are broken and enslaved. The underwater world’s culture and language were portrayed in beautiful detail. The chapters flowed well and the book was easy to read. 

The book addressed the terrible issue of slavery and its accompanying greed, cruelty, and misuse of power. I wasn’t prepared for this theme to encompass the entirety of the story and found myself skipping over some of the details regarding the land dwellers’ extensive cruelty.

It didn’t feel like a YA novel and perhaps that’s what threw me off. Still, those who love high fantasy will likely love this book (as so many other reviewers have attested to). I received a complimentary copy courtesy of Enclave Publishing via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive comment. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Sophia L. Hansen, raised in the melded cultures of Korea and America, understands not fitting into society’s boxes. Born on a tiny island in Alaska, then growing up in New York City and Boston, she now resides in the Southeast, writing and editing between fresh(ish) cups of coffee and slices of crisp bacon. She embraces life with her husband, their adulting children, and her new grandson, but her favorites are Jesus, family, coffee, and dark chocolate, mostly in that order.

 

More from Sophia

Once upon a time, there was a mom.
A mom with many children.
She was a very busy mom.
One day the pastor’s wife asked her to write something for the Christmas program.
“Why would you ask me?” she replied. “I’m just a mom.”
“Because you love words,” was the quiet answer.
When the mom heard this, she realized it was true. And so, she began to write.

The Beginning

~

Stories don’t grow in a vacuum. Neither do they flourish in a pressure cooker. Our ideas are like seeds; full of potential but needing time and space to germinate. My season of writing started after more than a decade of birthing, raising, and educating my children. We had five at the time and I was full up. There was little space in church activities for attached moms whose children didn’t nursery well, and I spent more of my Sunday mornings in the playground rather than the pews. Then, finally, a friend invited me to a study in her home, and all children were welcome.

As my soul feasted on the fellowship, Bible study, and sharing, I felt like a child sitting down to a holiday meal. I’d been so busy taking care of others that I didn’t remember what it was like to have an oxygen mask for myself. It had been far too long since my spiritual self had been nourished. Out of that beautiful season the seeds of my words, long dormant, began to sprout, including my what ifs about what would become the world of Water’s Break.

Water’s Break dives into Nica’s world, a water-covered planet inhabited by amphibian people. When disaster strikes, landmasses rise from the seabed, separating the water and its people for the first time in their history. Nica’s family is devastated: her father is gravely injured, her sister is missing, and her mother, grief-stricken. Nica, a rookie Guardian, is determined to find her sister and bring her home, even if it means she must venture out of the Deep. But no one knows what lies in wait abovewater.

I hope your hearts are encouraged as you join Nica’s fight to survive in a sea of oppression. And when survival is not enough, will she risk everything to choose life?

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, January 30

Exploring the Written Word, January 31

Blogging With Carol, February 1

Artistic Nobody, February 2 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 3

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 4

Guild Master, February 5 (Author Interview)

Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, February 5

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 6

Beauty in the Binding, February 7 (Author Interview)

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 8

Wishful Endings, February 9

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 10

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, February 11 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, February 11

Simple Harvest Reads, February 12 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sophia is giving away the grand prize package of a signed hardcover with swag (bookmark, stickers, character cards)!!

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/29b05/water-s-break-celebration-tour-giveaway

Biblical Finances Interview

About the Book

Book: Biblical Finances Jesus Christ: The Financial Advisor

Author: Lisa D. Pedriel

Genre: Christian, Christian living, Finance, Wealth Management

Release Date: May 3, 2023

The objective of this book is to help readers manage their finances using biblical standards and principles. The main benefit of doing this is that our finances will be built on a sure foundation (Isaiah 33:6), which is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and His Word. Jesus is concerned about every aspect of our lives, and the management of our finances is no exception. Throughout His Word, He gives us advice on how to get and manage the wealth He has made available to us. Therefore, it is imperative that we study the scriptures and apply them to our lives and finances. In summary, this book looks at wealth and finances from a biblical perspective.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Lisa Pedriel is a child of the King, who serves as an intercessor in the body of Jesus Christ. She gave her life to Him on March 25, 2017, while walking on Lily Drive in St. James, Barbados. She started off her writing journey by penning poems and love notes to the Lord. Lisa is a qualified accountant and an auditor by profession. She currently resides on her native island Saint Lucia and lives a quiet and private life.

 

Interview with the Author

What does success as an author look like to you?

If one person comes to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ by reading one of my books, that is success to me.  At the end of the day, it is all about Him.

What inspired this book?

A couple of years ago, I joined a youth ministry at my church and one day I was given the responsibility to speak to young people about financial literacy. In preparation for this speech, I decided to look at finances from a biblical perspective. As I continued to do my research, I realize that there was a book within me and that’s how Biblical Finances- Jesus Christ: The Financial Advisor was born.

What is your favorite Bible verse or life verse?

As an intercessor and lover of prayer it must be Colossians 4:2 “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”

What would you like your readers to get out of this book?

Sound financial principles are important, and the bible speaks about them however Jesus Christ is the true treasure. The bible says in Matthew 6:33 (NKJV) but seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. We are spiritually rich in Jesus Christ.

What is your vacation spot?

Antigua- the beaches are lovely; the food is good and it reminds me of home. This nation took my breath away the first time I saw her.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 1

Vicky Sluiter, February 2 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 3

By The Book, February 4 (Author Interview)

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 5 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 5

Simple Harvest Reads, February 6 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 7

For the Love of Literature, February 8 (Author Interview)

Because I said so – Adventures in parenting, February 9

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, February 10 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 11

Fiction Book Lover, February 12 (Author Interview)

Beauty in the Binding, February 13 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 13

Guild Master, February 14 (Author Interview)

When the Waters Came Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: When the Waters Came

Author: Candice Sue Patterson

Genre: Christian/Historical/Romance

Release Date: January, 2024

An act of greed or an act of God?

Introducing a new series of 6 exciting novels featuring historic American disasters that transformed landscapes and multiple lives. Whether by nature or by man, these disasters changed history and were a day to be remembered.

Pastor Montgomery Childs has tended his flock in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, for two years. While his pews are full every Sunday, he most desires to see a reckoning between God and the kings of industry who recreate on Lake Conemaugh. The pleasure grounds, flowing alcohol, and business dealings of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club taunts Monty as he works to heal the wounds inflicted from his own privileged childhood among Pittsburgh society. Like Noah, Monty prays against the evil surrounding him, but he never expects God to send a flood.

It takes five days for the Red Cross to respond to the Johnstown flood disaster, but when it does, Annamae Worthington is ready to help. Apprenticing under Clara Barton has prepared her for the job, but nothing can prepare her for the death and destruction that awaits. As if the survivors haven’t suffered enough, typhoid fever ravages the town, resurfacing suppressed emotions regarding her father’s death.

Narrowly surviving the flood and the horrifying things he’s witnessed, Monty’s faith is floundering. Then a Red Cross nurse puts him to work helping with the typhoid fever victims arriving at the hospital tents every hour. Monty and Annamae work together distributing disinfectants and supplies, housing orphans, and serving those left behind. Slowly, his faith resurfaces. A kinship forms between them neither can ignore. But when an investigation into the collapsed dam points to the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, secrets emerge that may tear them apart.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you should know:

When the Waters Came by Candice Sue Patterson is the first book in The Series, A Day to Remember. The series by various authors includes standalone books about tragic events in American History. This book is about the Johnstown flood which happened on May 30, 1889 when a dam collapsed and washed away the town below the dam leaving behind unimaginable destruction.

 

What you might need to know:

This book gives a fictional account of a true tragedy, it does not sugarcoat the death and destruction that occurred. I would not recommend this book to young or immature readers.

 

What I think about this book:

This was a gipping account of the Johnstown flood. I appreciate the research that the author put into creating a compelling story. Monty Childs left behind a world of privilege to become a pastor in a mill town.  When tragedy strikes he grapples with his faith and need for justice for those who lost so much. Annamae Worthington arrives in Johnstown with her mentor Clara Barton. I love how the author wove Clara into the story, and appreciate the spunk, like when she told Annamae’ Oh this is nothing, my dear… So long as we have no bullets flying around us”.  It is wonderful that in spite of all of the tragedy and grief  to “most Importantly, remember who holds the entire world in His hands”  I look forward to reading more by the author and in the series.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Celebrate Lit, this in no way influenced my review. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Candice Sue Patterson studied at The Institute of Children’s Literature and is an elementary librarian. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons in a restored farmhouse overtaken by books. When she’s not tending to her chickens, snuggling with her Great Pyrenees, or helping children discover books they love, she’s working on a new story. Candice writes Modern Vintage Romance–where the past and present collide with faith. For more on Candice and her books, visit www.candicesuepatterson.com.

 

 

 

More from Candace

On May 30, 1889, the industrious residents of Johnstown, Pennsylvania fell into slumber to the sound of rain pattering their rooftops, unaware that, for many, it would be their last night on earth. This was the thought I carried with me through the entire journey of writing When the Waters Came. Every survivor’s account of that day, every loss, every miracle, every emotion will stick with me for years to come.

My first knowledge of the Johnstown Flood came several years ago when I watched The Men Who Built America in its first airing on the History Channel. The idea that so great a loss of life could’ve easily been prevented by some of the richest men in the world strummed an invisible chord inside me. I remember looking at my husband and saying, “I’m going to write a book about it someday.”

A few more years went by and each time I sat down to plot a new story idea, Johnstown whispered across my heart, but the timing wasn’t right. Then, in 2021, I was shopping at our local community book fair and stumbled upon a first edition of History of the Johnstown Flood, Illustrated by Willis Fletcher Johnson, published in 1889, months after the disaster. Not meaning to sound hokey, I felt as if God handed me the book Himself and confirmed He wanted me to write this story. The next year, at the same book fair, I found a first edition of The Life of Clara Barton by Percy H. Epler, published in 1919. It contained transcripts of her journals and correspondence, some specifically mentioning the Red Cross and her role in aiding the survivors of the Johnstown flood. Once again, I felt that God had provided all the material I would need to tell my tale. Then, in 2022, when my publisher reached out looking for proposals for a new series centered on disasters, I knew the time had come to remind folks of that tragic day.

I’ll be honest, I shed a lot of tears during my research. The accounts are heartbreaking. But the faith and determination in some of those accounts are inspiring as well. Many of the characters in When the Waters Came are real survivors of the flood, and Clara Barton, herself, walks on and off the pages throughout the story.

In May 2023, a month before I turned the manuscript in to my publisher, my husband and I traveled nine hours to Johnstown to experience what we could for ourselves and to make sure my historical facts were correct. I stood where the South Fork Dam once did. I imagined the roar of the water as the dam crumbled. I toured the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club clubhouse, where America’s elite once recreated. I stood at Colonel Unger’s homestead where he’d stood that fateful day, powerless to reinforce the dam and save the folks in Johnstown below. I walked the rows of 777 graves in Grandview Cemetery honoring the unidentified bodies that were rescued. I thought of all the lost loved ones never found.

Where the retelling of the Johnstown Flood is hard and tragic, I also packed the story with plenty of faith, hope, and love to give readers a well-balanced experience. For on-site videos, behind-the-writing-scenes info, and more details about the Johnstown Flood, subscribe to my newsletter and follow me on Facebook and Instagram.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, January 27

Devoted To Hope, January 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 28

Tell Tale Book Reviews, January 29

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 30

Mary Hake, January 30

Texas Book-aholic, January 31

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 1

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 2

She Lives To Read, February 3

Blossoms and Blessings, February 3

Simple Harvest Reads, February 4 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Cover Lover Book Review, February 5

Book Looks by Lisa, February 5

Life on Chickadee Lane, February 6

Pause for Tales, February 6

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 7

For Him and My Family, February 8

Connie’s History Classroom, February 9

To Everything There Is A Season , February 9

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Candace is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon e-gift card and a 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/299c0/when-the-waters-came-celebration-tour-giveaway

Reckless Yes Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Reckless Yes: Exchanging Worldly Ease for God’s Eternal
Adventure

Author: Johnna Hensley

Genre: Christian memoir

Release Date: June 6, 2023

After a shocking diagnosis in 2007 sent her life in an unexpected direction, Johnna Hensley had a decision to make. Though she had walked with God for nearly two decades, she had to choose whether she would follow His leading on a strenuous journey to find the narrow gate that leads to eternal
life; or would she take the easy, wide path offered by the temporal world? As she chose to say yes to selfless love, through God’s guidance, she discovered this was the first of many forks in life’s road that would ultimately lead her to a life full of adventure, surprises, and sometimes,
even hardships.

Inspiring and encouraging, this true story of one family’s journey is intertwined with relevant teaching of who God is and why we can trust Him in the midst of life’s chaos. Through relatable storytelling, wit, and wisdom, readers will be challenged to shift their perspective toward God’s eternal adventure.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Johnna (pronounced John-NUH) is an author, blogger, and all-time coordinator of chaos. Managing her family of eight, built through biology and adoption, means there’s rarely a dull moment in her days. Through herwriting, she boldly shares the eternal hope and restoration heaven offers.
She and Ryan, her husband of eighteen years, reside in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas and are avid supports of foster care, adoption, and disability awareness and advocacy as each has impacted their family. When the chaos subsides, you’ll find Johnna spending time outdoors, enjoying an early morning workout, or on the patio of a Tex-Mex restaurant with friends.

 

More from Johnna

Reckless Yes is Johnna’s first book, although certainly not her last! This book was years in the making and began through blog posts where she would chronicle the insights she gained from living life caring for her disabled son. It was her insights and experiences during her son’s grand entrance into the world, and many years following, which began to shape and solidify her eternal perspective and the hope of heaven. Reckless Yes is a Christian memoir that reads nearly like a Bible study as Johnna uses a unique strategy of alternating teaching chapters with memoir chapters. Not only will you see her life unfold on the pages, but you’ll see the character of God come to life as well with Johnna’s simplistic, yet interesting, explanation of Scripture. When you’re done with this book, you’ll be asking yourself what YOUR next yes will be! You’ll be equipped and capable, ready to move your life forward into action and be reckless for the Kingdom.

Interview with the Author

What inspired this book?

This book was inspirited by my own life and God’s goodness in it. In just four decades I had lived quite an interesting life but it was God’s sovereignty and good plan on each page that I wanted to share with the world.

 

What would you like your readers to get out of this book?

I hope that readers walk away from this book with an idea for what their next YES will be. I want to encourage and challenge readers to see what it is they’re being led to and then jump all in for the sake of the kingdom.

 

What is your vacation spot?

My family and I love to spend time at the beach, specifically Gulf Shores, Alabama. We enjoy time at a resort there and can’t wait for another trip there, hopefully this summer!

 

What are you reading right now?

I’m currently reading Bridge to Haven by Francine Rivers. It’s a novel set in the 1950s in Hollywood. I love Christian historical fiction that can transport me to another time and place.  

 

What is your most well-loved and well-used house appliance?

My most loved household appliance is my air fryer! With six kids ages 16 down to 3, we make a lot of food every day and the air fryer helps keep all these kids fed. We’ve made countless batches of chicken nuggets in that thing.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 2

Simple Harvest Reads, February 3 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 4

Artistic Nobody, February 5 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 6

Splashes of Joy, February 7 (Author Interview)

Lots of Helpers, February 7

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 8

Fiction Book Lover, February 9 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 10

Blossoms and Blessings, February 11 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, February 11

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 12

Guild Master, February 13 (Author Interview)

Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, February 14

Vicky Sluiter, February 15 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Johnna is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of Reckless Yes, a gold Reckless necklace, and a $25 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/29b08/reckless-yes-celebration-tour-giveaway

LaDelle & Jubilant Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: LaDelle & Jubilant

Author: Cathy McIlvoy

Genre: Historical Fiction/Christian Fiction/Southern Fiction/Black/African American Historical Fiction

Release Date: August 14, 2023

Set in the 1930s, this Southern feel-good novel about a controlling widow and the troubled nephew she’s asked to care for invites you on a journey of faith and surrender while weaving in the amazing true-life character, George Washington Carver.

LaDelle Harris, a fiery 51-year-old widow and head librarian at the Tuskegee Institute, likes things her way: orderly and predictable. So, the last thing she wants is to take care of her 12-year-old nephew, Jubilant, for the summer— or maybe forever. But when her estranged brother, the Reverend Ashton Bartley, suffers a heart attack and she’s asked to look after his son, she can’t say no.

While LaDelle focuses on doing all she can to keep Jubilant from creating chaos in her well-ordered life, it seems Abel Fisher, the manager of the Piggly Wiggly, is taking an interest in her. Amid all that’s happening, Jubilant is bent on returning to Huntsville to be with his daddy.

Can a menopausal woman with a need for control and a troubled pre-teen boy make peace with God and each other as they struggle with their fears and issues? Some gracious neighbors and Professor George Washington Carver may be able to help.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

LaDelle & Jubilant is Cathy McIlvoy’s first published work of fiction and was initially inspired by her admiration for George Washington Carver. Her interest in him and Tuskegee grew as she taught her sons about this genuine man of faith. She especially wanted her two youngest, bi-racial sons to know about this scientist with his impressive accomplishments and commendable character, who looked like them.

Cathy’s desire to learn more about Professor Carver put her on a plane from California to Alabama, where she soaked up all she could and enjoyed more than one unforgettable meal of catfish, grits, and sweet tea. Her time spent on campus at Tuskegee University, including several visits to the George Washington Carver Museum located on campus, fueled ideas for LaDelle & Jubilant and continues to be a highlight in her life. Cathy was also fortunate to receive an endorsement for her book from Dana Chandler, Archivist at Tuskegee University.

Today, Cathy and her husband make their home near one of their sons in Louisville, Kentucky where she writes, and they minister to pastors, leaders, and missionaries through Standing Stone Ministry. In addition to having four grown sons, Cathy and her husband are blessed with amazing daughters-in-law, a growing brood of grandchildren, and—though calling them a blessing is a matter of debate between her and family members—two persnickety cats.

More from Cathy

“A personal relationship with the Great Creator of all things is the only foundation for the abundant life. The farther we get away from self, the greater life will be.”

-George Washington Carver.

A Note About George and My Journey With Him

Although Professor Carver doesn’t appear in LaDelle & Jubilant until chapter nine, he’s not only an important character, but the impetus for writing the book in the first place!

The truth is, I am fascinated by George Washington Carver and want everyone to know about him. Due to his accomplishments, he was often referred to as “The Wizard of Tuskegee,” “The Peanut Man,” and, my personal favorite, “The Black Leonardo.” An agricultural chemist, professor, artist and more, George was a renaissance man in many ways. Though born into slavery and sickly as a child, God had big plans for him, and George was faithful. He viewed his work as worship to the Lord and service to his community and beyond.

After doing much research about George, the South, and the history of Tuskegee University, it felt surreal to travel to Alabama and spend time where Professor Carver had lived and worked for 47 years. For several days, I soaked up all I could—the George Washington Carver Museum, Booker T. Washington’s home, called The Oaks, the stately brick buildings on campus, and the thriving agricultural area which is still used for instruction. As a middle-aged Caucasian woman, I’m sure I stood out at this historically Black university as I ate in the student cafeteria and roamed the grounds, poking my head into buildings and snapping photos.

After engaging all my senses and imagination while exploring the place George called home for most of his life, I flew back to California with a belly full of sweet tea and my mind full of fresh insight and inspiration. Years after that trip, I finally finished LaDelle & Jubilant!

I hope you are entertained and inspired by my historical, character-driven novel. I also hope it compels you to look further into the life of George Washington Carver.

Happy reading!

Interview with the Author

1)What does success as an author look like to you?

When I set out to write LaDelle & Jubilant it was because I felt God was leading me to do it. So, my mindset from the get-go was whatever God decided to do with my manuscript was up to Him. I would do my due diligence in writing and promoting it and trust Him with the results. As of this moment, my book is not a New York Times Best Seller, and no one has called to say they want to make a movie of LaDelle & Jubilant. However, I trust God is using it in people’s lives as He sees fit. Sometimes I receive comments/emails from readers attesting to this, and I’m grateful for His faithfulness. That feels like success to me!

 

2)Which character did you connect to best in this book?

I know there is a bit of LaDelle in me, though I don’t want to admit it! Like her, I can let fear dictate my mood and reactions, so I connect with her at some level. But the character I’m most drawn to is Henrietta. She is a free-spirit and fun, but she also has substance. Henrietta bestows grace and sees past LaDelle’s prickly side. I think we all want to be a friend like Henrietta and hope to have a friend like her. In the story, George Washington Carver is that kind of friend as well. Both characters, to me, are captivating.

 

3)Which part of the book was the most difficult to write?

When I started writing my book, I had never been to the South, let alone Tuskegee University. Of course, I also never lived in the 1930s and I’ve never been Black! All this required me to put in a great deal of effort to make sure that throughout my story, I represented the South during that era and George Washington Carver accurately. I’d say, however, this endeavor was more challenging and time-consuming that difficult. I wanted to be careful to represent their race/culture in a right way, so I asked some of my Black friends to read my manuscript and give me feedback. I met with the University’s archivist over the phone to confirm that my information about Carver and the campus were true. I also travelled to Alabama, stayed at the University, and visited the surrounding area so I could get a feel, taste, and smell of the South and where GWC lived and worked.

 

4)What inspired this book?

My admiration for George Washington Carver was my inspiration. I remembered some basic things about him from what I had learned back in elementary school. Then, as a homeschooling mom with two adopted bi-racial sons, I wanted them to learn about men and women of color that accomplished a great deal and had faith and strong character. Carver was one that fit the bill. The more we studied, the more enthralled I became with him and his life story. So, I decided to weave him into a historical fiction novel, something I believe that hasn’t been done before.

 

5)Which author influenced you most?

For LaDelle & Jubilant, I think there were two authors that had the biggest influence on me and, interestingly, neither are writers of historical fiction. I love Wendell Berry’s deep and rich style of developing his characters. He is concise, but his word choices and how he uses them pack a meaningful punch. Also, I appreciate Karon’s lightheartedness in her Mitford stories and how she weaves in faith and humor. Both authors have taught me through their writing.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, January 24

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, January 25 (Author Interview)

The Lit Lady, January 25

Lighthouse Academy Blog, January 26 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 27

Texas Book-aholic, January 28

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 29

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, January 30

Books I’ve Read, January 31

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 1

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 2

Simple Harvest Reads, February 3 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 4

An Author’s Take, February 5

Artistic Nobody, February 6 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, February 6

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Cathy is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a 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/299bd/ladelle