The Blue Ribbon Brides Review & Giveaway

To purchase your copy, click here.

Blog Stops

November 1: Simple Harvest Reads

November 2: History, Mystery & Faith

November 2: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

November 3: Bibliophile Reviews

November 3: Smiling Book Reviews

November 4: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

November 5: A Greater Yes

November 5: Blossoms and Blessings

November 6: Artistic nobody

November 7: cherylbbookblog

November 8: Reviewing Novels Online

November 8: Jeanette’s Thoughts

November 9: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner (Spotlight)

November 9: inklings and notions

November 10: Lighthouse Academy

November 11: The Scribbler

November 12: Karen’s Krayons

November 13: Daysong Reflections

November 14: Splashes of Joy

November 14: Blogging With Carol

About the Book

Blue Ribbon Brides
Click to purchase

Meet nine men and women whose competitive goals take them to state and county fairs between 1889 and 1930. From baking pie to polishing pigs, from sculpting butter to stitching quilts, everyone has something to prove to themselves and their communities. But in going for the blue ribbon, will nine women miss the greatest prize of all—the devoted heart of a godly man?

My Two Cents

I loved these heartwarming stories. They were easy to get into and I didn’t want to put the book down! As soon as I finished one, I couldn’t wait to dive into the next. Many times when I read collections such as these, the stories seem incomplete and underdeveloped. That is not the case with these nine stories.

If you would like to remember why you began reading, pick up this book! You won’t be dissapointed. I give The Blue Ribbons Bride 5 out of 5 stars!

 

About the Authors

Jennifer AlLee believes the most important thing a woman can do is discover her identity in God—a theme that carries throughout her stories. She’s a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and RWA’s Faith, Hope and Love Chapter. When she’s not spinning tales, she enjoys board games with friends, movies, and breaking into song for no particular reason. Jennifer lives with her family in the grace-filled city of Las Vegas, Nevada. Please visit her at www.jenniferallee.com.

 

Angela Breidenbach is a bestselling author, host of Grace Under Pressure Radio, and the Christian Author Network’s president. And yes, she’s half of the fun fe-lion comedy duo, Muse and Writer, on social media.
Note from Angela: “I love hearing from readers and enjoy book club chats. To drop me a note or set up a book club chat, contact me at angie.breidenbach@gmail.com. Let me know if you’d like me to post a quote from your review of this story. If you send me the link and your social media handle, I’ll post it to my social media with a word of gratitude including your name and/or social media handle, too!”
For more about Angela’s books (especially more Montana-inspired romances) and podcast, or to set up a book club chat, please visit her website: http://www.AngelaBreidenbach.com
Twitter/Pinterest/Instagram: @AngBreidenbach
Facebook Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/AngelaBreidenbachInspirationalSpeakerAuthor
Bestselling author Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. She lives in Oklahoma, near her son and his family, and continues her interests in playing the piano and singing, books, good fellowship, and reality TV in addition to writing. She is an active member of Oklahoma City Christian Fiction Writers, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Christian Authors Network. She has written over fifty books and more than 250 devotionals. Her historical fiction ranges from the Revolutionary War to World War II, from Texas to Vermont. You can find Darlene online at www.darlenefranklinwrites.com
Cynthia Hickey grew up in a family of storytellers and moved around the country a lot as an army brat. Her desire is to write about real, but flawed characters in a wholesome way that her seven children and five grandchildren can all be proud of. She and her husband live in Arizona where Cynthia is a full-time writer.

 

Carrie Fancett Pagels is a multi-published award-winning author of Christian historical romance. Twenty-five years as a psychologist didn’t “cure” her overactive imagination! She resides with her family in the Historic Triangle of Virginia, which is perfect for her love of history. Carrie loves to read, bake, bead, and travel – but not all at the same time!

 

TIFFANY AMBER STOCKTON has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood. Today she is an award-winning author, speaker, social media consultant, and a freelance website designer who lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, in Colorado. They have a daughter and a son and a vivacious Flat-coated retriever named Roxie. Her writing career began as a columnist for her high school and college newspapers. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Historical Romance Writers. Three of her novels have won annual reader’s choice awards, and in 2009, she was voted #1 favorite new author for the Heartsong Presents book club. You can read more about her at her website.

 

Niki Turner is a novelist, journalist, and blogger. Her first completed manuscript earned second place in the Touched By Love 2009 contemporary category romance contest. She writes for local newspapers and won second place for best agriculture story at the 2013 Colo­rado Press Association annual convention. She is a coblogger at www.inkwellinspirations.com. Niki is the president of the Western Slope chapter of the American Christian Fiction Writers. Connect with Niki on Facebook or Twitter, and visit her website for information on her other books: www.nikiturner.net.
ECPA- bestselling author Gina Welborn worked for a news radio station until she fell in love with writing romances. She serves on the American Christian Fiction Writers Foundation Board. Sharing her husband’s love for the premier American sportscar, she is a founding member of the Southwest Oklahoma Corvette Club and a lifetime member of the National Corvette Museum. Gina lives with her husband, three of their five Okie-Hokie children, two rabbits, two guinea pigs, and a dog that doesn’t realize rabbits and pigs are edible. Find her online at www.ginawelborn.com!
Becca Whitham (WIT-um) is a multi-published author who has always loved reading and writing stories. After raising two children, she and her husband faced the empty nest years by following their dreams: he joined the army as a chaplain, and she began her journey toward publication. Becca loves to tell stories marrying real historical events with modern-day applications to inspire readers to live Christ-reflecting lives. She’s traveled to almost every state in the U.S. for speaking and singing engagements and has lived in Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Oklahoma, and Alaska.  She can be reached through her website at www.beccawhitham.com

 

Guest Post from Carrie Fancett Pagels

Welcome to the Celebrate Lit Blog Hop!!!

Carrie Fancett Pagels

Gina Welborn is the brainchild of this collection. The majority of the authors had participated in another collection with her and she got the notion of doing a fair-themed collection set at either state fairs or county fairs and the heroine going for the Blue Ribbon! We all agreed that it sounded like great fun! So Gina threw out the idea to us and we each picked the state we wanted and then the type of Blue Ribbon activity our heroines would have. Fortunately, we all chose different things!

Why I wrote “Requilted with Love” for the collection:

I am from Michigan, so I immediately thought of the Michigan State Fair. And when I go to the fair, I love to go to the Quilting Pavillions and my mother was an excellent quilter so I grew up sleeping under beautiful quilts and have many of my own that she made. For my novella, “Requilted with Love,” I got the idea of having a wedding quilt requilted with appliqués because my mother had made me a gorgeous wedding ring quilt for my first engagement. When we broke up, she held onto it. Later I told her, Mom, I’m not getting married – how about you just send it on to me, and she did. Then when Jeff and I got married, she made us a beautiful appliquéd quilt. I put those two together, so that my heroine, Sarah Richmond, whose first two fiancés died, has requilted atop the wedding ring quilt and is trying to win the Blue Ribbon as a vehicle to promote her wish for better medical care in upper Michigan, where she is from. Gina had suggested I include a balloonist, thinking that would be a fun addition at the fair. So Grant, my hero, is a balloonist who is also an engineer – but Sarah is confused by his uniform and thinks he is a state fair groundskeeper!

Giveaway

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To celebrate their tour, The Blue Ribbon Brides authors are giving away an award winning themed basket that included a quilt and an Amazon Kindle Fire!

Be sure to comment on this blog post below. If we have ten commentors (not including the authors), I will be picking one person to win a book!

Link to giveaway: https://promosimple.com/ps/a7ea

Expositional Preaching Review

Guest post from James Barela Jr.

Expositional Preaching: How to Speak God’s Word Today by David Helm is a 128 page book in the Church Ministry Nonfiction genre. It is published by Crossway Publishers and was released on April 30, 2014.  To purchase your copy, click here.

Overview

expository-preachingIn this accessible volume—written for preachers and preachers in training—pastor David Helm outlines what must be believed and accomplished to become a faithful expositor of God’s Word.

In addition to offering practical, step-by-step guidance for preachers, this short book will equip all of us to recognize good preaching when we hear it.

Part of the 9Marks: Building Healthy Churches series.

My Two Cents

Expositional Preaching is an excellent resource for all Christians serious about biblical exposition. While there is a sizeable amount of technical discussion related to the process of exegesis and preaching the book proves valuable for the layperson as well. This reviewer does not preach but has a passion for expositional preaching. After reading this book I have an increased appreciation for a sermon that has been carefully worked together. Expositional Preaching also gave me important tools for how to listen to an expositional sermon and how to rightly divide God’s word in developing lessons for my family. I would encourage you to not allow this book’s main audience to keep you from reading it because you will find it worth your while.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.  I give it this rating because it is fairly easy to read, filled with a necessary and sizeable portion of technical speak but able to be deciphered by the layperson. Expositional Preaching is a great resource for any student of God’s Word.

About the Author

David R. Helm (MDiv, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) serves as lead pastor of the Hyde Park congregation of Holy Trinity Church in Chicago. He also serves as Chairman of The Charles Simeon Trust, an organization which promotes practical instruction in preaching. He is the co-author of The Genesis Factor (with Jon Dennis), a contributor to Preach the Word: Essays on Expository Preaching, and the author of The Big Picture Story Bible and 1 and 2 Peter and Jude in the Preaching the Word commentary series.

Wrapped in God’s Grace Spotlight & Giveaway

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To purchase your copy, click here.

About the Book

3d-book-cover-wggThe crushing pain of seven years of unanswered prayer for a child. A miraculous adoption story, followed by unforeseen challenges and heartbreak.

Barbara Bras begins her memoir by sharing God’s answer to her prayers and the difficult times that followed. Although God does not provide an easy fix, the intricacies of God’s plans reveal themselves to her, and she relives her life in a new light.

Bras then recounts the stories of her grandfather Arshag and her grandmother Gulle, survivors of the atrocities of Armenia in 1915. Arshag, sent to South America for his protection, returns as a soldier of the Armenian Legion to fight for his country. Gulle is the only member of her family to survive the death march into the desert. Through God’s grace they find each other, marry and move to America in 1921. Bras is their first grandchild.

The final section of the memoir follows Bras as she marries and moves to Hawaii, only to return as a single mother to teach school in a small town. It is there she finally realizes that God has provided her with protection and direction. Bras discovers that once we truly surrender our will to God, His plan always produces blessings beyond our wildest dreams!

About the Author

book-cover-pic-1-1In 2015, Barbara Bras left her career to pursue her dream of serving God. She believed that her first step would be to share the amazing ways God had blessed her. As she wrote of her son’s miraculous adoption and the challenging years that followed, it led to the rediscovery of her entire life, including the history of her grandparents’ remarkable survival in Armenia and her search for purpose and love. Her memoir led to her first novel, which she hopes readers will find engaging and memorable.

 

Guest Post from Barbara Bras

An Unanswered Prayer

I struggled for many years with one unanswered prayer. It was my “go to” request every time I came before the Lord.

Convinced that with God nothing is impossible, I also knew that the Lord may say “Not now” many times, even before he says no. I acknowledged that the Lord probably had a much bigger and better plan in mind for me, but none of that offered any comfort. As I struggled year after year with my unanswered prayer I found more questions than answers.

Was I fooling myself and ignoring God’s “No”? Could my lack of faith be the reason I couldn’t hear the Lord? And if not now, then when dear Lord?

Then I discovered that the Lord said “Not now.” because he had a miracle waiting for me, more amazing than I could have ever imagined. Like Hannah, God finally answered my prayer for a child. And through that miracle I learned that surrendering my will to God allows Him to bless me beyond my human understanding.

To my further surprise, I discovered that the miracle didn’t mean the end of the story. Experiencing a miraculous adoption didn’t come with a guarantee or a promise that the rest of my life would be free of heartache.

After all of those years of unanswered prayer, I found myself back on my knees with a new daily prayer request. The Lord had something else to teach me through this new struggle, a lesson that took me another fifteen years to learn.

Not only did those fifteen years lead me right back to where I started, surrendering my human will to His and trusting in His greater plan, but it convinced me that the Lord wanted me to share my story.

Wrapped in God’s Grace, a Life Rediscovered begins with my unanswered prayer for a child, but as I wrote it, God’s plan for me became clear. The second section of the book recreates the events surrounding the survival of my grandparents through the Armenian Genocide of 1915. Their immigration to America in 1921 led to my existence. The book closes with the Lord blessing me with a loving husband in spite of the many missteps I made directing my own life. A reviewer found this nonlinear sequence of events unusual, and I am fine with that, since that’s how the book unfolded before me.

Captured by St. Paul in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4, I now view my writing as a tribute first to the God who comforts and strengthens all of us in hardships and trials, and second as my mission to encourage others.

A photo gallery for Wrapped in God’s Grace, a Life Rediscovered can be found on my website AuthorB.Bras.com. Click here to view the Photo Gallery

Blog Stops

October 11: Bibliophile Reviews

October 12: Rockin’ My Mom Jeans

October 13: Eat, Read Teach, Blog

October 14: Book Love

October 15: A Greater Yes

October 15: Book Reviews From an Avid Reader

October 16: Carpe Diem

October 17: A Baker’s Perspective

October 18: Pause for Tales

October 19: A Reader’s Brain

October 20: Bigreadersite

October 21: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

October 22: Mary Hake

October 22: Simple Harvest Reads (Spotlight)

October 23: Christian Bookaholic

October 24: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

Giveaway

anazon-gift-card

To celebrate her tour, Barbara is giving away a $100 Amazon gift card! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a561

50 Crucial Questions Review

50 Crucial Questions Review

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Click to Purchase

Guest post by Jim Barela Jr.

50 Crucial Questions: An Overview of Central Concerns about Manhood and Womanhood by John Piper and Wayne Grudem is a 336 page novel in the Young Adult Science Fiction genre. It is published by Thomas Nelson Publishers and was released on March 17, 2015.  To purchase your copy, click here.

Overview

The roles of men and women are immensely contested in both society and the church today. Christians are looking for answers from the Bible regarding how God intends for men and women to relate to one another. In this concise and accessible resource, well-known authors and Bible teachers John Piper and Wayne Grudem respond to fifty crucial questions often asked in relation to biblical manhood and womanhood. Answering objections raised against the view that God created men and women equal in value but distinct in role, Piper and Grudem winsomely present a biblical vision of gender roles that is life-giving and fulfilling for both men and women.

My Two Cents

50 Crucial Questions is a well-composed book focused on the controversial and contemporary discussion regarding the role of men and women in the church and home. Piper and Grudem provide and excellent work clearly defining the biblical role of men and women in a time when pressure to rewrite and redefine the biblical mandate for distinguished roles comes from within the church and out. One of the most significant elements of this book is the tenacity to remain true to the meaning of scripture even when it poses a counter-cultural view – yet with gentleness and reverence for the holder of the opposing view. Additionally, Piper and Grudem are honest in their answers where there is no clearly defined answer from God’s word.

 

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars.  I give it this rating because it is an easy read and a careful exposition of scripture on the controversy between complementarians and egalitarians. 50 Crucial Questions is a great resource for any Christian library.

About the Authors

John Piper (DTheol, University of Munich) is the founder and teacher of desiringGod.org and the chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. He served for 33 years as the senior pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and is the author of more than 50 books, including Desiring God, Don’t Waste Your Life, This Momentary Marriage, Bloodlines, and Does God Desire All to Be Saved?
Wayne Grudem (PhD, University of Cambridge; DD, Westminster Theological Seminary) is research professor of theology and biblical studies at Phoenix Seminary, having previously taught for 20 years at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Grudem earned his undergraduate degree at Harvard University, as well as an MDiv from Westminster Seminary. He is the former president of the Evangelical Theological Society, a cofounder and past president of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, a member of the Translation Oversight Committee for the English Standard Version of the Bible, the general editor of the ESV Study Bible, and has published over 20 books, including Systematic Theology, Evangelical Feminism, Politics—According to the Bible, and Business for the Glory of God.

The Devoted Spotlight and Giveaway

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To purchase your copy, click here.

About the Book

the-devoted

Restless and adventurous, Ruthie Stoltzfus is right on the cusp of leaving her Amish home. Secretly, she’s earned her GED, saved her money—but she can’t quite set her journey into motion. Just as everything falls into place, along comes Patrick Kelly.

Patrick is a young man on a journey of his own. He’s come to Stoney Ridge to convert to the Amish and has given himself thirty days to learn the language, drive a buggy, and adapt to “everything Plain.” Time is of the essence and every moment is to be cherished—especially the hours he spends with Ruthie, his Penn Dutch tutor.

Ruthie’s next-door neighbor and cunning ex-boyfriend, Luke Schrock, is drawn to trouble like a moth to a flame. Rebellious, headstrong, defiant, Luke will do anything to win Ruthie back—and Patrick Kelly is in his way.

Bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher invites you back to Stoney Ridge for a story of dreams deferred—and the promise of hopes fulfilled.

About the Author

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Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author whose most recent novels include Anna’s Crossing and The Inn at Eagle Hill series, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Twitter @suzannewfisher.

 Blog Stops

October 18: cherylbbookblog

October 18: Blogging With Carol

October 18: Mary Hake

October 19: Reading Is My SuperPower

October 19: Books,Dreams,Life

October 20: Singing Librarian Books

October 20: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

October 21: Seasons of Opportunities

October 21: Daysong Reflections

October 22: Back Porch Reads

October 22: Southern Gal Loves to Read

October 23: Lighthouse Academy

October 23: The Power of Words

October 24: Bigreadersite

October 24: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner

October 24: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

October 25: Artistic Nobody

October 25: Donna’s BookShelf

October 26: Pause for Tales

October 26: Christian Chick’s Thoughts

October 26: Bukwurmzzz

October 27: Splashes of Joy

October 27: Bibliophile Reviews

October 28: ASC Book Reviews

October 28: Vic’s Media Room

October 28: inklings and notions

October 29: Jeanette’s Thoughts

October 29: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

October 30: A Baker’s Perspective

October 30: Book by Book

October 30: Quiet Quilter

October 31: Two Girls and a Book

October 31: Blossoms and Blessings

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away a copy of The Devoted and an iPad Mini 2 16GB! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a60b

After September Spotlight & Giveaway

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To purchase your copy, click here.

About the Book

afterseptembercoverartFrom the outside, Rose Davis had the perfect life: a long marriage to a successful politician, two grown children away at college, and respect within her community. When she suddenly finds herself divorced, she turns her back on God.

In an effort to reclaim her life and pride, she spends the summer in the Caribbean. Her plan does not include meeting Patrick, the charismatic local doctor with a tragic past who ignites a passion both unexpected and thrilling.

As she begins to open up to love, doubt and fear creep in. Once again she finds herself broken hearted, left on her own to pick up the pieces. It’s only when she experiences the unmistakable love and grace from the very One she turned away from that Rose realizes what she needed most was there waiting for her all along.

About the Author

stephanie-smithStephanie’s love of the written word began long before she could read. As a child she would hold a newspaper in hand and move her fingers along the page, pretending to read along.

By the time she was a teenager, she dreamed of writing stories that would touch people’s lives, much like hers had been by so many authors.

She lives in the Pacific Northwest and enjoys listening to Christian rock music while she writes, spending time with her family, watching British television, or reading YA fantasy novels.

Guest Post from Stephanie Smith

I’m so excited to work with Sandra and Celebrate Lit to launch my debut novel AFTER SEPTEMBER which I’ve come to see as a labor of love and trust in the Lord.

You see, becoming a published author has always been my dream, but every time I’d try to write a novel, the inner critic would kick in and stop me in my tracks. I’d write a few paragraphs before giving up, unhappy with all my written imperfections. So, I continued my day job and the idea of writing a novel, let alone publishing it, became less and less realistic. For some reason I never lost that kernel of hope that it might happen one day. God was speaking to me then, I just didn’t realize it.

In 2010 I was diagnosed with Stage IV Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. After six months of intensive chemotherapy, I was in remission and had the strongest desire to write a novel. At first, the idea was to write a fictional story based on my experience. As I started to write, it just didn’t feel right. I then switched to writing a memoir, but that too fell flat. Frustrated, I gave up on writing once again.

Fast forward to 2013 and the idea of AFTER SEPTEMBER came to me. The premise was about a woman who goes through a divorce, spends a summer in the Caribbean and has a summer fling. The idea was so strong I began to write. I couldn’t help but write. As the story spoke to me, I kept this mantra in my head: “Just write. Just write.” I was finally able to quell my inner critic and nine months later, completed the first draft. Boy did I feel accomplished! Well, the feeling didn’t last very long. After getting feedback from a few beta readers, I re-wrote the entire story in a different point of view.

When I finished I realized I had to put this story in a box. A genre box. Was it women’s fiction? A romance? Christian or secular? After reading more about these genres I realized I’d made a big mistake. I hadn’t identified my brand from the get-go and the story didn’t really fit in any genre. Too secular for the Christian market; too Christian for the secular. It makes sense to me now why the first round of agent queries were declined.

I began to pray in earnest, seeking God’s will for this story. I felt He’d led me to write Rose’s story and realized my agenda had gotten in the way. Why would God have me write a story with pre-marital sex? The answer is He wouldn’t. Once my heart was satisfied I knew the direction He wanted me to go, I was back to the drawing board. Once again, I re-wrote AFTER SEPTEMBER. This time I kept my Christian viewpoint in mind and after the third re-write the final version was born.

Well, life has a funny way of stopping you in your tracks. I’d begun querying agents for the second version, and in June 2014 my cancer came back. You’ve got to be kidding me!

Okay, Lord. I trust you. I put my faith in You.

Another six months of intensive chemo put me back in remission. PRAISE GOD! I resumed my agent query and again met with rejection after rejection. This didn’t stop me. By this point I was bound and determined AFTER SEPTEMBER would be released. My hopes were raised when a small publisher I’d have given anything to work with wanted to read the entire manuscript. With baited breath I waited. When the disappointed rejection came, I nearly gave up. But God had other plans. See, when I placed my trust in Him, I had to accept His will, not mine. His time, not mine.

The last on my list to query before going the self-pub route was Desert Breeze Publishing. I submitted my story with the expectation of another rejection. Around January 1st of 2016 I received THE e-mail I’d dreamed about: an offer for a contract. I was in shock. THANK YOU LORD!! Nine months later, AFTER SEPTEMBER has been published. I want to pinch myself. I feel it’s all a dream and I’ll wake up.

A dream that began in my early teens took until my mid-forties to come to fruition. What I’ve realized is writing isn’t a dream but a calling. God knew this and remained patient with me as I finally figured that out. A calling to give women hope while reading a romance novel. Such became my tagline: “stories of life…love..hope”

What I’ve learned from this is to never give up on your dreams. Never stop believing God has something in store for your life, even when it seems like you are living one struggle after another. He is faithful to His promises!

Blog Stops

October 13: Book Reviews From an Avid Reader

October 14: Simple Harvest Reads

October 15: Back Yard Reads

October 16: Bibliophile Reviews

October 17: Daysong Reflections

October 18: A Greater Yes

October 19: Pause for Tales

October 20: Quiet Quilter

October 21: For the Love of Books

October 22: Bigreadersite

October 23: Reviewing Novels Online

October 23: Carpe Diem

October 24: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner

October 25: Christian Bookaholic

October 26: Through the Open Window

October 26: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Stephanie is giving away a $50 Amazon gift card!Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a611

How to Make Victoria Sponge Review & Giveaway

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

victoria-sponge-finalVictoria Sponge – a well-known cake? Maybe, but also a wife and mother of four children. Disorganized and chaotic, with obligations galore, sweet Victoria clings to God, her best friend who shares His amazing love with her. From tripping over a hoover left in the hallway to discovering her son’s desire to die because he is different, she journeys through her own Lent. Giving up is not an option, but saying ‘yes’ to God each day is. Tragedy and comical events follow Vicki through her week. Does Victoria Sponge rise through all the messiness that life offers or does she sink?

My Two Cents

vs-prayer-3If you are looking for a book that will absolutely change your life, pick up a copy of How to Make Victoria Sponge! I loved how the author wrote this book in a humorous, easily to relate to manner. The prayers are inspiring, the character of Victoria Sponge is relatable, and the plot-line is well written. If there was one book that I would say is a must read for this year, it is How to Make Victoria Sponge!

An enjoyable read, a life-changing book. I give How to Make Victoria Sponge 5 out of 5 stars!

About the Author

pic-for-websiteBorn in England, Margaret Kazmierczak loves storytelling, but dyslexia made writing difficult. After marrying and birthing three children, she finally got around to it. She and husband Peter live in Dorset, United Kingdom with two daughters.

Guest Post from Margaret Kazmierczak

For those that know me cooking is not a talent that I am famous for. I follow the recipes, but for some unknown reason my cakes remain flat, albeit cleverly disguised with chocolate. My friends were, quite understandably, shocked that I appeared to have written a cookery book.

My friends let me introduce the Baker who inspired me to write, ‘How to Make Victoria Sponge’. His name is God the Father. This cook needs all the help she can get.

In 2010 God literally took me out of my comfort zone and allowed me to become vulnerable. He took away my health and job. An active middle aged woman reduced to a shell. For two years I struggled to come to terms with my condition. Then one night I prayed and asked what I was supposed to do now? The message was simple, “write a book”. Well I could think up a million and one reasons why not to write a book. I declared them one by one but God the Father was having none of it. He reminded me of WHO was commissioning me.

To say that my reading and writing skills were on a par with my cooking skills was an understatement. So I stopped questioning and listened to His answer. “I shall give you the ingredients and you provide the humour and story outline with your life experiences.” So Victoria Sponge was born. Not a cookery book per se but a recipe for a closer relationship with God the Father through story and petition.

This journey took two years, a long time to wait for a cake to rise! The proof, however, was in the tasting which for some time was bitter due to rejection. Then a sequence of events happened one after the other and ‘How to Make Victoria Sponge’ was cooked, oops, birthed. I have been blown away with the face to face reviews in England of the book. A Methodist minister used it to empower her congregation, to show them how even the simplest things in life can lead to a prayerful response.

Victoria known as Vicki, married to Bob, is a normal woman with four children. The book looks at a week in her life and compares it to Jesus’ Lent week. Many issues are explored through the pages. Vicki Sponge could be you or me and the response to each situation, a solution to your own challenges.

Without the Baker this book would end up like my cakes! The writing of it helped me to begin a new life and I hope it helps you to do so too if you read and journey through its pages.

Blog Stops

September 29: A Reader’s Brain

September 30: The Power of Words (spotlight)

October 1: History, Mystery & Faith

October 2: Bukwurmzzz

October 3: Artistic Nobody

October 4: Quiet Quilter

October 5: Daysong Reflections

October 6: Mary Hake

October 7: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

October 8: Simple Harvest Reads

October 9: Bibliophile Reviews

October 10: Petra’s Hope

October 11: His Grace is Sufficient

October 12: Onceuponatime

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Margaret is giving away a themed gift bag containing an apron, whisk, Bible, and a limited 1st edition paperback copy of How to Make Victoria Sponge! Click to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a416

Time Trap Spotlight & Giveaway

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

timetrap-coverWhen problems arise during a field exam, Director Peter Matthews and Dr. Laura Nelson are sent through a time portal to investigate. While they search for their missing cadets, they encounter an enemy who is calculating and brutal—a mysterious nemesis who is holding a grudge against the TEMCO program. As Peter and Laura race to unravel clues directing them to their kidnapped cadets, their own survival comes into question. A deadly trap has been set, and they are forced to pit their wits against a serial killer who is intent on playing a deadly chess game through time itself.

About the Author

danele-rotharmel-1Danele Rotharmel grew up with a love of the literary word, and by age five, she knew she wanted to be a writer. However, her life took an unexpected turn when a mysterious illness brought her close to death. Eventually, she learned that a low-level carbon monoxide leak from a faulty furnace in her home was slowly poisoning her. This poisoning triggered severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and partial amnesia.

During this time, the hardest thing she faced was a crisis of faith. She had to quit her job and stop going to church. She couldn’t write, couldn’t drive, and could barely remember who she was. To say she was upset with the Lord was an understatement. She began reexamining her faith in light of her illness, and eventually, she came to the firm conclusion that God is real, God is good, God is interested and involved, and God is trustworthy regardless of tragedy.

When her illness became even more severe, she was put into quarantine and could only talk to friends and extended family through the glass of a window. This quarantine lasted for seven years. During this time, she wrote the first six books in The Time Counselor Chronicles.

Danele currently lives in Colorado where she continues to write. Although her journey back to health was long and difficult, it provided her with the opportunity to grow closer to God and to write her books. For that, she is forever thankful.

You can learn more about Danele by visiting her blog at https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/

Guest Post from Danele Rotharmel

I’ve always loved to read, but I hate that horrible moment when a good book comes to an end. It’s torture saying goodbye to characters I’ve come to love. One of the best things about being an author is having control over your own stories. I wrote The Time Counselor Chronicles while I was extremely ill and enduring seven years of quarantine. During that time, I didn’t have control over many aspects of my life, but I did have control over my fictional characters. I found extreme pleasure in the fact that since I was the author, I didn’t have to say goodbye to the TEMCO crew—I could just write them another story.

 

Time Trap is the second book in my series. It can be read as a sequel to Time Tsunami, or it can stand alone. Time Trap was written for one reason only—I was enjoying myself, and I didn’t want to say goodbye to the people I’d created in Time Tsunami. And that’s why the other books in my series were written as well. By the time I finally sought publication, I’d completed six books. Writing, for me, was an act of pure enjoyment. When I began, I wasn’t thinking about publishers or reading audiences, I was simply thinking about what type of adventure I wanted to write next. My books brought me joy, and that was all that mattered. For years, I didn’t let anyone know I was writing. TEMCO was my personal world—my escape hatch from illness and pain. I was afraid that if I let others into my imaginary world, it would crumble away. As it turned out, the exact opposite was true. Knowing that people were enjoying my stories filled my life with incredible happiness!

 

I always fill my books with suspense, romance, action, faith, and comedy. I keep them clean, and I work hard to make them full of page-turning fun. Communication is such a wonderful thing. I love that fact that we can relay our ideas, hopes, and dreams to each other. My books are more than just stories, they symbolically chronicle the way I stood up to my illness and fought it. They speak about the value I place on love and friendship. They show that humor can be found even in the midst of great difficulty. And most of all, they demonstrate that a crisis of faith isn’t the end—it’s simply the first step to understanding God on a deeper level. Life isn’t easy, but I’ve learned that even in the middle of tragedy, God is faithful and trustworthy. That’s what each of my characters eventually learn, and that’s what I hope my readers will take away from my books.

Blog Stops

October 6: A readers brain

October 7: Simple Harvest Reads

October 8: Book Reviews From an Avid Reader

October 9: Through the Open Window

October 9: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

October 10: CTF devourer

October 11: History, Mystery & Faith

October 12: Pause for Tales

October 13: Blogging With Carol

October 14: Donna’s BookShelf

October 15: Carpe Diem

October 16: Petra’s Hope

October 17: henry happens

October 18: Vic’s Media Room

October 19: A Baker’s Perspective

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Danele is giving away a package that includes an autographed paperback copy of both Time Tsunami and Time Trap, a Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord” journal, a lovely coffee cup, and a 4X4 picture frame. Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a5da

Mary, Chosen of God Spotlight & Giveaway

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To purchase your own copy, click here.

About the Book

marychosenofgod_cover“Blessed are you, Mary, chosen of God.”

Mary is ordinary girl from Nazareth. She helps her mother with household chores, she daydreams about a handsome carpenter’s son named Joseph, and at night she lies on the roof and contemplates the stars.

But one evening, a heavenly visitor comes with unexpected news—and her life is changed forever.

Experience the life of the Messiah from the perspective of his mother, who must place her trust and obedience in Adonai, the Most High, as he fulfills centuries of prophecy in the middle of her daily life. Walk with Mary as she witnesses Yeshua grow, mature, minister, and even be crucified—and then raised again, to the kindling of her new faith.

About the Author

dianawtaylor_hsredDiana Wallis Taylor has written eight biblical novels, including Mary, Chosen of God, Martha, Journey to the Well, Mary Magdalene, Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate, and Ruth, Mother of Kings. Well-known in the Christian book industry for her biblical fiction, her most recent five books have received over 3,000 ratings on Goodreads. Taylor is a former San Diego Christian Writer’s Guild’s “Writer of the Year” and her biblical novels have earned her a variety of awards. Diana lives in San Diego with her husband, Frank. They have six grown children and ten grandchildren.

Blog Stops

October 4: Simple Harvest Reads

October 5: Proverbial Reads

October 5: I Hope You Dance

October 6: Book by Book

October 7: History, Mystery & Faith

October 8: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

October 9: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner

October 10: A Greater Yes

October 10: Back Porch Reads

October 11: The Power of Words

October 12: Book Babble

October 13: For the Love of Books

October 13: Mary Hake

October 14: Splashes of Joy

October 14: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

October 15: Bigreadersite

October 16: Henry Happens

October 17: His Grace is Sufficient

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Diana is giving away a gift basket that includes Mary, Ruth, Whitaker House’s study Bible, and The Lord is my Shepherd candle from Abba Anointing Oil! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a5b

The Bedwamer’s Son & Giveaway

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

What if Abel had killed Cain? But there was no jury of his peers….

In 1928 Georgia, a black man who kills a white man is automatically guilty, but the bedwarmer’s son, an ex-slave, is no normal black man. Once his lily-white lawyer lady learns the truth, everything changes. Can she save him from swinging?

Will the bedwarmer murder the one she’s been bought to serve?

From the antebellum South, come travel the dusty trails of Jim Crowe Dalton, Georgia with slave and master, saint and sinner. See if God is really big enough, if He truly cares about His children. McAdoo has done it again, this time in a brand new way. A delightful morsel for the palates of Christian readers world round.

My Two Cents

This is my favorite McAdoo book! The story gripped me from the beginning and drew me right in. I felt like I was sitting right there in the room with the characters watching the story unfold. Both the characters and plot are well written and have plenty of depth to them. I just love how McAdoo wrote the character of Jasmine – She was my favorite. As with all McAdoo books, faith is a strong theme. When I finished the book, it caused me to reflect on my own life. Those are the best books!

I give The Bedwarmer’s Son 5 out of 5 stars. This book is not just one to add to your TBR list, it is one that you want to move to the top!

About the Author

14522397_10211109194953683_1643312375_oCaryl, praying her story gives God glory, loves writing for Christian genres–historical and contemporary romance, Biblical fiction, and mid-grade especially. In 2014, Simon and Schuster debuted VOW UNBROKEN, a historical Christian romance set in 1832 Texas, and Caryl followed with three additional novels. In April, LADY LUCK’S A LOSER (contemporary, mature, inspirational romance); September’s debut, HEARTS STOLEN (set in 1839-1844), book two of her historical Christian Texas Romances–a #1 Amazon Best-seller; and in November, A LITTLE LOWER THAN THE ANGELS, volume one of her new Biblical fiction series, The Generations–also an Amazon #1 Best-seller.

In 2008, her high school sweetheart-husband Ron moved her to the woods of Red River County. Caryl counts four children and sixteen grandsugars life’s biggest blessings believing all good things come from God. Praying her story gives God glory, she hopes each one ministers His love, mercy, and grace to its readers. She and Ron live in Clarksville, Texas with two grandsons, Christian and Benjamen.

 

Guest Post from Caryl McAdoo

The Bedwarmer’s Son, my twenty-eighth title to be published, is different from any of my books to date, offering two complete love stories from two eras a generation apart.

How I came to write it is a very different story, too!

You see, I have a contemporary book in progress based loosely on the television show The Voice, but instead of the big new singer, my imagined program The Pitch is looking for the next big author! I started it in November 2013, but abandoned its 35,000 words shortly after Vow Unbroken debuted in March from Simon and Schuster.

My characters in The Pitch—three teams of authors and agents—attend writers’ conferences all over the country looking for the next great American novel with the voters being the readers across the country. For my story, I needed lots of titles, a few with skeleton story premises to make it work.

The Bedwarmer’s Son was one of those God gave me.

But it refused to be left there as just a title. The intriguing title demanded to be written.

And so, now I’m blessed that CelebrateLit is hosting a blog tour to celebrate its September release!

Though definitely a historical, this novel is not in my Texas Romance family saga series, but is a ‘companion’ book to it. My readers will remember four-year-old Charley from Hearts Stolen, book two…then him grown up and the hero of book six Just Kin. Well, in The Bedwarmer’s Son, readers meet Charley’s son and grandson, minor characters in a chapter or two.

The story opens in 1928 where the title character, William “Billy” Sinclair II is on trial for the murder of his white half-brother Jamison. Alice Parmalee, his lawyer, finds the old man’s grandson, William “Will” Robert Sinclair IV quite handsome, good-hearted and generous.

In explaining to Alice why he killed his brother, Billy goes back to the story of his mother, the ‘owned’ bedwarmer, Jasmine. Of course, every time he starts, I break into the young slave girl’s point of view, and readers find themselves back in the mid-1800’s. I love her spunk and think you will, too.

I especially love The Bedwarmer’s Son’s opening line: “He sold us right before he married that fancy lady from England, then bought us back the next Spring.” It’s set on the fictitious Three Springs plantation near Dalton, Georgia.

In my story, I used a word that in my growing up was considered on the same level as a cuss word. I would have had my mouth washed out for saying it. So conflicted, I asked for much counsel, and everyone agreed that for the story’s time period—to portray it correctly—it was necessary…but still hard for this lady.

On the other hand, I so enjoyed going back and forth between the two stories. There’s plenty of period racial tension—so common to the day—with the KKK unhappy about the pretty white attorney defending the old black man who’s guilty simply because his victim’s skin was white.

Of course, being a Christian novel, he and his grandson trust God and believe the Almighty sent Alice—an atheist who’s been taught putting any faith in an invisible being is nothing more than a fool’s errand. She’s been reared by a famous black attorney who volunteered to take Billy’s case.

At the end of the story, when Billy’s trial is over, I think readers may be cheering. I hope so.

I pray Jasmine’s and Alice’s journey will cause readers to draw closer to the Lord, while others might reconsider a few of the things they’ve been comfortable believing. That Holy Spirit will use this story to draw them deeper into their own relationship with our Awesome God.

Looking back, I can see God’s hand all over this story and its creation and cover…the whole nine yards. I can’t begin to imagine all the ways He will used it, but am convinced that use it, He will! I always say I am blessed and highly favored, and He keeps on creating the fruit of my lips!

I love story and the cover of The Bedwarmer’s Son (designed by Ruthie Madison Derby) that displays both dejection and hope, and melds the two historic periods. God has indeed blessed me and showered His favor over me. I pray it will touch your hearts.

Oh, and as an aside I spoke with Sandy Barela about over a coffee chat, I wrote Lady Luck’s A Loser back in 2001 long before The Batchelor ever hit TV. My story is a mature inspirational romance about a wealthy man inviting nine women to come live at his bed and breakfast—under the guise of hiring a manager for it—in order to choose a wife.

Hopefully if The Pitch becomes a TV reality show, I’ll get proper credit, considering this idea is published here and copyrighted in my doing it! 🙂 Laaaa!

Blog Stops

September 27: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

September 28: Karen’s Krayons

September 29: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

September 30: Simple Harvest Reads

October 1: Bibliophile Reviews

October 2: Artistic Nobody

October 3: The Power of Words

October 4: Back Porch Reads

October 5: Bigreadersite

October 6: His Grace is Sufficient

October 7: Once Upon A Time

October 8: Bukwurmzzz

October 9: Under His Wings

October 10: Mary Hake

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away all seven of her Texas Romance ebooks to a lucky winner! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a3fd