Light in the Mountain Sky Review and Giveaway

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About the Author

Book: Light in the Mountain Sky

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: September 29 , 2020

Light in the Mountain Sky (1)This epic journey may seal her fate forever.

Determined to prove her worth, Meksem fiercely fought to earn her place among the warriors in her Nez Perce camp. When her half-sister is captured by an enemy tribe, she refuses to trust the rescue to anyone else. But her new friends insist on joining her mission, and she battles between relief and frustration at their presence. Especially the white man who peers at her as if he can see through the face of the warrior she struggles so hard to maintain.

Spaniard Adam Vargas thrives on adventure wherever his travels take him. He’s fallen in love with this Rocky Mountain wilderness, as well as the spotted horses the Nez Perce tribe raise. His fascination with this Indian maiden-turned-warrior catches him off guard though, including the way she seems to be fighting for more than her sister’s safe return.

The journey proves more perilous than any of the group expects, and the secret Meksem hides becomes impossible to conceal. If they live through this mission, the life they knew will never be the same again.

From a USA Today bestselling author comes another epic journey through breathless landscapes and intense adventure.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy Houng

“She could imagine exactly how the spotted gelding felt with Adam by its side. As though it had finally met someone who saw through the bluster to the fear and mistakes underneath, and looked past even those to the true being at the core.”

In this third book of the Call of the Rockies series, we get to know Adam, Joel’s older brother, better. He’s brave, loyal, and steadfast but always has had a heart for adventure. His love and gentleness with horses is pretty amazing to see, This book can be read as a stand-alone but reading the books in order will give depth and fuller meaning to the characters and relationships as they continue to build throughout the series. Meksem is a fierce warrior who has never felt understood or fully loved since the death of her father. Now she’s on the hunt to find a rivaling tribe’s war party that kidnapped her half-sister and others from their tribe. There is the author’s trademark description of wintery mountainous Clearwater River Valley in 1831 that is breath-taking, traveling perils through snow and wilderness that is gasp-inducing, and the call to salvation and redemption that is clear and well-laid out. The constant war between the Blackfoot tribe and the Nez Perce and Salish tribes is a different theme that runs within the main plot and shows the sinful nature of all mankind. But God’s love and sacrifice that transcends our sin is reflected in Meksem’s thoughts, struggles, and understanding that dawns.

I received a copy of the book through the author/publisher via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All comments and opinions are solely my own.

About the Author

Misty M. Beller photo (1)Misty M. Beller is a USA Today bestselling author of romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and children now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

 

More from Misty

Early Nez Perce Business Women

As I’ve been researching for my current Call of the Rockies series, I’ve had the pleasure of diving deep into the culture of the Nez Perce tribe. I found it interesting that one of the primary food sources of The People (as they called themselves) was camas roots.

But what really drew my notice was how the women would cultivate entire fields of camas root, store what they needed for their family through the winter, then use the extras for bartering. Some savvy women would become quite wealthy from their business dealings!

The bulbs of the camas plant are full of calories and nutrients, and each fall, Nez Perce families would travel to their particular camas meadow (a section of land whose camas rights had probably been passed down from generation to generation within their family). Many of these meadows were located near present-day Weippe, Moscow or Grangeville, where the onion-shaped bulbs grew thickly.

 

Women used pointed wooden tools to harvest the bulbs, and could often gather over 50 pounds a day, satisfying their full winter’s supply within just a few days.

Native American peoples who ate camas include the Nez Perce (Nimíipuu), Cree, Coast Salish, Kalapuya, and Blackfoot, and Yakama, among many others. Not all of these people groups harvested camas themselves. Instead, many relied on trade in order to procure it. Trade networks were established all the way from the Rockies to the Pacific Ocean, and a shrewd businesswoman who tended her camas meadows well could provide everything her family needed and more!

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, October 13

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 13

Splashes of Joy, October 13

A Baker’s Perspective, October 14

deb’s Book Review, October 14

Blessed & Bookish, October 15

Connect in Fiction, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

For the Love of Literature, October 16

Betti Mace, October 16

Texas Book-aholic, October 17

21st Century Keeper at Home, October 17

Inklings and notions, October 18

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 18

jeanette’s Thoughts, October 18

Older & Smarter?, October 19

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 19

For Him and My Family, October 20

Mary Hake, October 20

She Lives To Read, October 21

Writing from the Heart Land, October 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 22

Simple Harvest Reads, October 22 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

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

Blossoms and Blessings, October 23

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 24

reviewingbooksplusmore, October 24

Bizwings Blog, October 24

Connie’s History Classroom, October 25

Book Love, October 25 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 26

Bigreadersite, October 26

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Misty 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/101f7/light-in-the-mountain-sky-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Amish Menorah Review and Giveaway

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About the Book

Book: The Amish Menorahthumbnail_TheAmishMenorahandOtherStories_Medium

Author: The Men of Amish Fiction

Genre: Amish Fiction

Release Date: May 13, 2020

Come sit and enjoy!

Six short stories by the men of Amish fiction to entertain and educate you. You’ll journey with an Amish man and the Jewish woman whose life he saves, agonize with an Amish girl in love with an Englische man, fret with two sisters both in love with the same man, pray with the family whose child is injured in a fall, work with the Amish sheriff in a western town, and laugh at the girl forced to be Amish for the summer.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know

The Amish Menorah and Other Stories is a compilation of Amish Short Stories by the following authors: Willard Carpenter, Patrick E. Craig, Jerry Eicher, Thomas Nye, Murray Pura and Amos Wyse.

 

What I think about this book:

This was a nice book of short stories by male authors. I enjoyed how each author used Amish as their base, but were able to bridge out into their own unrelated stories. They ranged from The American West in the late 1800  and Germany in WWII to modern day America. Each story was unique and held my attention.  I enjoyed that most of the stories gave you a glimpse into the writing style of the author.  I will definitely read more from these authors in the future.

 

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 Authors

Will CarpenterTo know Wil, one would probably not think of him as an author. He is a husband, a father, a Christian, a veteran, a business owner, and a servant. He has led a life of bold and diverse experiences that immediately capture one’s attention. Wil has an unexpected artistic and creative side—something that might be considered uncommon, given his life’s works. Wil’s greatest inner strength is his expression and creativity. His life’s works give a credit to his writing that few other fiction authors possess. This generates a vivid degree of realism above and beyond other works of fiction.

PCraigPhoto300dpiAmazon bestselling author Patrick E. Craig is a lifelong writer and musician who left a successful music career to become a pastor in 1986. In 2007 he retired to concentrate on writing and publishing fiction books. In 2013, Harvest House Publishers published his first Amish series, Apple Creek Dreams. Patrick and his wife, Judy, live in Idaho. They have two daughters and Five grandchildren. Patrick is represented by the Steve Laube Agency.

 

 

 

 

 

EicherCropped

 

 

 

Jerry Eicher was born to Amish parents, and raised in an Amish settlement in Honduras, Central America. The family returned stateside in the late seventies, when Jerry was sixteen. He spent his youth with a beloved Amish youth group in Belle Center, Ohio, and was married in 1983 to Tina Schmucker, whose parents had moved to the community from Nappanee, Indiana. Jerry and Tina left the Amish to join the Mennonites after the birth of their second son. He wrote his first work in the early twenties, a fictionalized version of his childhood in Central America. His second title was an Amish love story— Sarah. Since then Jerry has published over thirty fiction titles and sold nearly a million books.

Thomas & KarmaThomas Nye writes novels about Amish life, with a touch of romance, and a foundation of faith in Christ. He and his wife, Shari, live on her family farm where they raised five children. They have seven grandchildren and a team of draft horses. Thomas walks a mail route for the US Postal Service. It keeps him close to nature and a affords many quiet hours in which to dream up novels. “Over three decades of friendships with Amish neighbors has revealed a simple wisdom that inspires my writing.” To find out more about Thomas Nye and his books, visit: amishhorses.blogspot.com

Murray_Pura_400Murray Pura has over twenty-four novels to his credit and, in addition, has published dozens of short stories, novellas,,and poems along with numerous books of non-fiction. He has worked with Baker, Barbour, Zondervan, Harvest House, MillerWords, HarperCollins, Harlequin, Harper One and Elk Lake Publishing. His fiction has won or been short listed for a number of literary prizes. Pura has lived in the UK, the Middle East, the USA and Canada. He now makes his home in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta.

wyseAmos Wyse was born in the Midwest. Spending a great deal of his youth around good, hard-working farmers, those who lived near them and worked with them. When writing, he keeps those people and the life lessons they taught close by.

 

 

More from The Men of Amish

The Amish Menorah and Other Stories was born out of a happy meeting between Patrick E. Craig and Thomas Nye at an Amish writers and readers event put on by Connie Spradling Lynch in Shipshewana, Indiana in 2019. Most of these readers did not know that there were several men who wrote Amish fiction. So Patrick and Tom decided to do something about that. After the conference, invitations went out to Murray Pura, Willard Carpenter, Jerry Eicher and Amos Wyse. Deb Haggerty at Elk Lake Publishers signed on and The Amish Menorah came to be.

Patrick E. Craig

As always, the six of us male authors of Amish fiction, have the goal of writing interesting and inspiring stories about Amish life. Collectively, our purpose in putting together The Amish Menorah, was to offer a sampling of Amish novellas written by men. There are only a few of us guys and dozens of women writing Amish novels. This book is an opportunity for readers of Amish fiction to sample six of our writing styles in one setting.

 

The Biblical description of a Menorah is a seven-flame lampstand. We like to think of our six stories in the Amish Menorah as six flames, each shining a unique light on Amish life. Our prayer is that you, our readers, will become that seventh flame as you join us by reading The Amish Menorah.

Thomas Nye

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 5

CarpeDiem, October 5

Inklings and notions, October 6

Batya’s Bits, October 6

Connie’s History Classroom, October 7

Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 7 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

She Lives To Read, October 8

Maureen’s Musings, October 8

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 9

Older & Smarter?, October 10

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 10

Artistic Nobody, October 11 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Mary Hake, October 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 12

SusanLovesBooks, October 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 13

Captive Dreams Window, October 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 14

Simple Harvest Reads, October 14 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

deb’s Book Review, October 16

Bigreadersite, October 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 17

Blossoms and Blessings, October 17

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 18

Vicky Sluiter, October 18

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, The Men of Amish Fiction are giving away the grand prize package of copy of The Amish Menorah and Other Stories, a copy of Samson and Amish Delilah (by Thomas Nye), and an Amish coloring book designed for Amish children and sold in Amish stores!!

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/101d9/the-amish-menorah-celebration-tour-giveaway

Cross Addicted Author Interview and Giveaway

Cross Addicted (1)

About the Book

Paula was broken, traumatized, and bound by many addictions, but today she is free. And that is God’s desire for you, too!

Paula Jauch’s life was controlled by trauma and addiction. Born into neglect and addiction, she inherited self-destructive patterns and emotional prisons she could not escape She experimented with crack at age thirteen, became pregnant at fifteen, was initiated into a Hispanic gang, and bore her second child by the time she was eighteen. Starved for acceptance and worth, she began cutting her body, and developed a near-fatal disorder for twenty years.

Cross Addicted follows Paula’s raw, stumbling journey toward freedom. You will find renewed hope and practical steps of recovery.

  • Recognize that there is nothing wrong with you.
  • Learn how to forgive yourself and others.
  • Understand addiction and trauma and the healing process through recovery.
  • Find freedom by understanding what Jesus did on the cross.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Paula Jauch’s life experience enables her speaking and writing to empower people from all walks of life. She shares her inspirational story all around the world through speaking and radio. Her goal is to carry this message to the forefront. She loves encouraging and motivating her audiences to live a life of freedom in Christ. She is a happily married mother of four and a proud Nana. In her spare time, you might find her at a favorite Mexican restaurant. Paula lives in West Michigan.

Paula’s work experience led her to realize she needed healing from childhood trauma after growing up in abuse and addiction. After she graduated from an alternative education high school and had two children by age eighteen, her heart was drawn to jobs to help children like herself. She worked seven years at the Juvenile Court Schools in Las Vegas, Nevada, and five years at the Clark County Department of Family Services, as a juvenile service assistant, working with troubled teens. In 2004 she relocated to Terre Haute, Indiana, where she worked for two years at Gibault Inc., as a youth specialist, working with teen boy sex offenders. After leaving the Gibault home, she worked a few months at the Vigo County Courthouse as a bailiff, but decided to leave her job when it became uncomfortable, because her family name was well known in the court system.

What she learned through all of her work experience is that if these kids didn’t get the proper help they needed, they would get involved in a gang, addicted to drugs or alcohol, land in prison, or even face death. Paula knew she was being called to take a step of faith and action and get the help she needed so she could help others who experienced similar childhoods.

Even though Paula’s story and passion centers around youth, men and women of all ages will be inspired by her story of restoration. Connect with Paula www.paulajauch.com or follow her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter @paulajauch.

 

More from Paula

Why did you write the book?

 

After graduating from an alternative education high school and having two children by the age eighteen, my heart was drawn to jobs to help children like myself. I started out by working seven years at a Juvenile Court Schools in Las Vegas, Nevada, and five years at the Clark County Department of Family Services, as a juvenile service assistant, working with troubled teens. In 2004, I relocated to Terre Haute, Indiana, where I worked for two years at Gibault Inc., as a youth specialist, working with teen boy sex offenders. After leaving the Gibault home, I worked a few months at the Vigo County Courthouse as a bailiff. However, I eventually decided to leave my job within a few months because it became uncomfortable since my family name was well-known in the court system. My work experiences led me to start asking questions and made me realize I needed my own healing from childhood trauma after growing up in abuse and addiction.

 

What I learned through all of my work experiences and my own life struggles is that if kids don’t get the proper help they need, they will either get involved in a gang, become addicted to drugs or alcohol, end up in prison, or even death. I knew God was calling me to take a step of faith and action to get the help I needed, so I could help others who experienced similar childhoods.

 

Trauma may be the greatest mission field of the 21st century, and the most misunderstood issue of our day.

 

My healing journey began when I could no longer pretend everything was okay. After being stuck in my trauma and my own addictions for years, I knew I needed to write a book and let others know there is a way out. My book was birthed out of my healing process. Cross Addicted: Breaking Free from Family Trauma and Addiction offers a hopeful path to recovery for those who are hurting and traumatized.

 

One in four U.S. students will witness or experience a traumatic event before the age four, and more than two-thirds by age sixteen.

Mindy Houng’s Q&A with Paula

What does success as an author look like to you?

If my book has helped just one person heal then I feel like I’ve achieved my goal.

Which chapter was the most difficult to write?

Chapter 9: Transformed by the Father’s Love

In this chapter I did a lot of crying as I was coming to acceptance of what my life experience really was with my earthly father and family.

What is your favorite Bible verse or life verse?

 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

This scripture will always be special to me because it was the first scripture I learned when I gave my life to Christ at twenty-one years old.

What inspired this book?

This is a very good question. I really just wanted to help people who experienced trauma or who’s life had been affected from growing up in addiction. There was a lot of things I went through and nobody was able to explain to me why I was struggling or feelings a certain way.

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

Hope and healing from hearing my story and learning what Jesus did at the Cross.

Thank you, Paula, for your time and allowing us to get to know you better!

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 10

For Him and My Family, October 11

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 12

Simple Harvest Reads, October 13 (Author Interview)

Captive Dreams Window, October 13

Inklings and notions, October 14

Through the Fire Blogs, October 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 16

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

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 18

deb’s Book Review, October 18

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 20

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 21

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 22

Splashes of Joy, October 23

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Paula is giving away the grand prize of a signed copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/101f5/cross-addicted-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tour Reminders

  • Post on Blog by noon on your assigned day – Be sure to include book information, author information, giveaway, review, blog stops.
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Tour Information

Submit review here

Link to purchase book: https://amzn.to/2Dxn2ME

Dropbox Link: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/807xmaypnksv2so/AABD0R8unyRXF-Z8yA8WCyXVa?dl=0

Tour Page on Celebrate Lit

Link for giveaway: https://promosimple.com/ps/101f5/cross-addicted-celebration-tour-giveaway

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Texas Holiday Hideout Review and Giveaway

Texas Holiday Hideout Banner

About the Book

Book: Texas Holiday Hideout

Author: Virginia Vaughan

Genre: Christian Romantic Suspense

Release Date: October 1, 2020

Texas Holiday Hideout CoverWhen her identity’s exposed,

hiding on a lawman’s family ranch is her last hope.

After her mother is killed, Melissa Morgan’s shocked to learn she’s spent her life in witness protection. Now it’s US marshal Miles Avery’s job to keep her and her little boy safe. And with a mole in his agency, the only way to evade the killer is to hide Melissa on Miles’s family ranch…and pretend she’s his wife for the holidays.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy Houng

Welcome back to Silver Star Ranch, TX! Virginia Vaughan has a knack for creating well-written, fast-paced romantic suspense and it’s fun to see her weave her stories within a family in this Cowboy Lawmen series. This is book 2 but can be read as a stand-alone since Lawson and Bree from the first book don’t enter the plot line. The book starts off with a mad rush to protect Melissa and her son Dylan from a mob boss and his henchman and the action doesn’t stop until the very end. Melissa is protective, loving, and tender; her lonely heart finds a home with the Avery family on the Silver Star Ranch. Miles is the stoic and loyal US marshal whose longing for love and a family of his own intensifies as his protection detail of Melissa and Dylan becomes personal.

It was so good to reconnect with the Avery family again and I can’t wait for the next book in the series! I received a copy of the book from the publisher via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All comments and opinions are solely my own.

About the Author

virginia-vaughan-HR-2Virginia Vaughan is a multi-published author of inspirational romantic suspense. Blessed to come from a large, southern family, her fondest memories include listening to stories recounted by family and friends around the large dinner table. She was a lover of books even from a young age, devouring gothic romance novels and stories of romance, danger, and love. She soon started writing them herself. A former investigator for the State of Mississippi, Virginia utilizes her criminal justice background with her love of writing to transform words into powerful stories of romance and danger.

 

More from Virginia

What if one day you discovered you were in the Witness Protection Program and didn’t know it?

This is the premise for my October book, TEXAS HOLIDAY HIDEOUT, which releases this month. My heroine, Melissa Morgan, learns she and her mother entered the program when Melissa was a child. Her mother never told her and, when Melissa witnesses her mother being murdered, she becomes the assassin’s next target. US Marshal Miles Avery steps in to protect the single mom and her son from a killer, but a leak in WITSEC leaves him with little options except to take his witnesses to his family’s ranch…and pretend she’s his wife for the holidays.

So, in celebration of TEXAS HOLIDAY HIDEOUT releasing this month, here are 10 things about the Witness Protection Security Program (or WITSEC) I learned during my research for this book.

  1. The program is voluntary. No one can be forced to enter.
  2. You can leave the program at any time—although it is not recommended.
  3. No person in the program, who follows the rules, has ever been killed.
  4. People entering WITSEC sometimes keep their same first name and/or initials so that if they mess up and start to sign their name, they have time to correct.
  5. Since WITSEC is a federal program, many states have their own programs to protect witnesses of gang or street-level crimes.
  6. If you get married while in WITSEC, you must lie to your new spouse to protect your true identity in the event the relationship doesn’t last.
  7. Protected witnesses are mostly criminals. Only about 5% are innocents despite the popular trope in movies and fiction.
  8. Local law enforcement may or may not be notified when a protected witness is relocated to their jurisdiction.
  9. Divorced, non-custodial parents have had their children hidden from them and now must agree to allow their children to enter the program.
  10. WITSEC protected witnesses are expected to eventually become self-sufficient. They do not get to live off the government for the rest of their lives.

Did any of these facts about WITSEC surprise you? I’d love to hear which ones. I had a lot of fun researching WITSEC for TEXAS HOLIDAY HIDEOUT. I hope you enjoy Miles and Melissa’s story! Look out for the next book in the series—middle brother Navy SEAL Paul Avery’s story—coming in TEXAS TARGET STANDOFF in March of 2021.

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, October 8

Genesis 5020, October 8

Hallie Reads, October 8

Artistic Nobody, October 8 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Through the Lens of Scripture, October 9

Texas Book-aholic, October 9

reviewingbooksplusmore, October 9

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 10

deb’s Book Review, October 10

The Cafe Scholar, October 10

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 11

KarenSueHadley, October 11

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 11

Older & Smarter?, October 12

Inklings and notions, October 12

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

She Lives To Read, October 13

Hebrews 12 Endurance, October 13

For Him and My Family, October 13

Betti Mace, October 14

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 14

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 14

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

Lighthouse Academy, October 15

To Everything There Is A Season, October 15

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 16

Blogging With Carol, October 16

Book Love, October 16 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Tell Tale Book Reviews, October 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 17

Batya’s Bits, October 17

Emily Yager, October 18

Labor Not in Vain, October 18

HookMeInABook, October 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 19

Mary Hake, October 19

Daysong Reflections, October 19

For the Love of Literature, October 20

Bigreadersite, October 20

EmpowerMoms, October 20

Blossoms and Blessings, October 21

Splashes of Joy, October 21

Pause for Tales, October 21

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Virginia is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of Texas Holiday Hideout!!

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/101f3/texas-holiday-hideout-celebration-tour-giveaway

Marry Me for Real, Cowboy Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Marry Me for Real, Cowboy

Author: Valerie Comer

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release Date: September 8, 2020

Adam Cavanagh’s rodeo championship tastes like dirt after a competitor’s critical injury, but going home to his family’s Montana ranch isn’t much of an improvement. If not even the coveted trophy earns his stepfather’s respect, what will it take?

Riley Dunning’s quick thinking is all that’s keeping her body, soul, and principles together, but demanding a kiss from a hunky cowboy to deter the weirdo following her might be taking things too far… especially when the cowboy comes up with a risky plan that might offer them both stability. If it doesn’t backfire completely.

Will a fake engagement give Adam and Riley the leg up they each need, or will the cost to their hearts be too high? Because neither believes the other will want to marry them… for real.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy Houng

It’s been a little while since I’ve read a book by Valerie Comer but this fun, emotionally engaging, spiritually uplifting novel is quintessentially Valerie Comer. The fake engagement trope is a tried and true one and the plot offers surprises in Riley’s past as well as fascinating characters in Adam’s not-quite-so-blended family. Riley is tender-hearted and sweet; Adam is loyal and hard-working. His changed heart and attitude since returning to his faith is evident and so encouraging, though he gets resistance from his townspeople and his stepfather. With a swoon-worthy hero and a lovable heroine, the story moves quickly and is easy to read.

If you enjoy sweet contemporary romance, you will really enjoy this one. I can’t wait to read the entire series and get to know Adam’s brothers and stepbrothers better.

I received a copy of the book from the author/publisher via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All comments and opinions are solely my own

About the Author

Valerie Comer is a USA Today bestselling author and a two-time Word Award winner. She writes engaging characters, strong communities, and deep faith into her green clean romances.

Valerie’s life on a small farm in western Canada provides the seed for stories of contemporary Christian romance. She only hopes her imaginary friends enjoy their happily-ever-afters as much as she does hers, shared with her husband, adult kids, and adorable granddaughters.

 

 

More from Valerie

Oh, cowboys…

 

Four years after I began publishing farm romances, I added my first cowboy romance series to the lineup. “It’s not that different,” I told myself and anyone who would listen. “Ranches are almost the same as farms. A few more horses, a few less random other animals!”

 

Ah, but cowboys are deemed more attractive than farmers! Maybe it’s their uniform. You know, a Stetson. Plaid snap-front shirts under denim jackets. Well-worn jeans. Cowboy boots. That combo looks better on a book cover than the stereotypical farmer in a straw hat, overalls, and rubber boots!

 

Whether focusing on cowboys, farmers, or gardeners, all of my green clean romances feature engaging characters, strong communities, and deep faith. Are the characters perfect Christians? Nope. No more than you and I are. There’s always room to grow.

 

In Marry Me for Real, Cowboy, the first story in my new Cavanagh Cowboys Romance, Adam decides a fiancée is just what he needs to impress his stepfather. Not that Adam wants to get married any time soon, but surely it won’t come to that! But… how long do you think it will take for him to realize that he’s living a lie and not trusting God to handle his future? What will his path be to resolve his lack of faith as well as move forward both in romance and in his relationship with his stepdad? You may have to read Marry Me for Real, Cowboy and find out!

 

— Valerie Comer

Blog Stops

Lighthouse academy, October 6

Fiction Full of Faith, October 6

Texas Book-aholic, October 7

deb’s Book Review, October 7

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 8

Genesis 5020, October 8

For Him and My Family, October 9

The Book Chic Blog, October 9

Inklings and notions, October 10

Joanne Markey, October 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 11

Simple Harvest Reads, October 11 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 12

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 13

Mypreciousbits, October 13

Artistic Nobody, October 14 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Vicky Sluiter, October 14

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 15

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 16

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 17

Blossoms and Blessings, October 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 18

Britt Reads Fiction, October 18

Splashes of Joy, October 19

Book Love, October 19 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Valerie is giving away the grand prize package of a complete paperback set of all six books in the Saddle Springs Romance series!!

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/101db/marry-me-for-real-cowboy-celebration-tour-giveaway

Forsaken Island Review and Giveaway

ForsakenIsland-banner

About the Book

Book: Forsaken Island

Author: Sharon Hinck

Genre: Christian Romantic Epic Fantasy

Release Date: September 15, 2020

Hinck - Forsaken IslandOn an uncharted world, happiness is effortless and constant … but can true joy exist without sacrifice?

The people of Meriel have long believed their island world floats alone in the vast ocean universe, so they are astonished when another island drifts into view. With resources becoming scarce, Carya and Brantley quickly volunteer to search the new land for supplies.

After navigating a barrier of menacing trees, the pair encounter a culture of perpetually happy people who readily share their talents and their possessions. But all is not what it seems. At the core of the island is a horror that threatens everyone, including Brantley and Carya.

Freeing the villagers of the bondage they’ve chosen may cost Carya and Brantley more than they could have imagined. Even if the two succeed, they’ll have to find a way to return to Meriel quickly … or be cut off from their home forever.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
Forsaken Island by Sharon Hinck is an Epic Fantasy, Christian Romantic book. It is the second book in The Dancing Realms series.  For the reader to not be lost the first book does need to be read prior to starting this book as this book starts in the middle of the series. I truly wish that I would have read the first book prior to starting Forsaken Island, it took me a while to figure out what was going on and I may have missed something important in the first book. However I was able to enjoy the book.

What you might need to know:
The people of the island seek relief from pain and responsibility, but in turn sacrifice  the things that should be dearest to them including the memories of their own children.

What I think about this book:
Hinck wrote an amazing book, one that will stay with me for a one time.  There was a fascinating book in a strange new world. A world with magic and floating islands, with evil that is disguised as comfort.  Carya and Brantley are tremendous characters, I loved getting to know them and seeing how they worked together complementing each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Hinck created a story that held so many truths, yet was wrapped in the fantasy . I particularly was struck by Brantley asking “Then why didn’t the Maker stop the Gardener from doing any harm?”,   as a Christian I grapple with this question more than I like. The story had joy and heartbreak, it captured my attention and left me longing for more. I would recommend it to anyone, adult or young adult.

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

Hinck2015 - Author PhotoAward-winning author of The Sword of Lyric series, Sharon Hinck writes “stories for the hero in all of us” about women on extraordinary adventures of faith. Her novels are praised for their authentic characters, strong spiritual themes, and emotional resonance. For this series, she drew on her experience as a ballet teacher, dancer, and choreographer.

 

 

More from Sharon

Inspiration Behind Forsaken Island

 

In the first book of The Dancing Realms series, we learn about a floating island world guided by the work of dancers. The assumption of everyone on Meriel is that their island IS the world—the only existing place on a vast empty ocean.

 

But in this second book, currents have pushed a new island into view. Our intrepid dancer Carya, and her stenella-riding friend Brantley, set off to explore, hoping to find resources for their world of Meriel.

 

The story was influenced by some of my favorite classics in the adventure/exploration genre. Jack London (particularly The Sea Wolf), or Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe. Or anything by Jules Verne or Robert Louis Stevenson. As the characters explore a new world, we experience both wonder and danger with them. I love that sort of story, so I set my two beloved characters of on an adventure to see what they would discover.

 

But of course, the book is also about the developing relationship between Carya and Brantley, and the conflicts they confront. And once again, an undercurrent (no pun intended) of spiritual themes is at play. The island holds dark secrets, and time is running out for the opportunity to find their way home.

 

I love the verse from Psalm 94:14. “For the LORD will not reject his people; he will never forsake his inheritance.” Even on a “Forsaken Island” – the Maker of His people finds a way to reach out and bring hope.

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, September 30

Fiction Aficionado, September 30

Wothy2Read, October 1

Texas Book-aholic, October 2

deb’s Book Review, October 2

Inklings and notions, October 3

For Him and My Family, October 4

April Hayman, Author, October 4

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 5

Daughter of Increase, October 5

For the Love of Literature, October 6

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 7

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 8

Blogging With Carol, October 8

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9

Artistic Nobody, October 10 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Simple Harvest Reads, October 10 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 11

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, October 12

Emily Yager, October 12

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 13

Pause for Tales, October 13

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sharon is giving away the grand prize package of a Forsaken Island book bag, a personalized and autographed hard cover copy of Hidden Current, book marks, and some decorative goodies on a plant-life theme!!

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/10195/forsaken-island-celebration-tour-giveaway

At Heaven’s Edge Author Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: At Heaven’s Edge

Author: Andrea Jo Rodgers

Genre: Christian Nonfiction

Release Date: October 1, 2015

Veteran EMT Andrea Rodgers has helped hundreds of people in their most vulnerable moments.
Some of the victims faced their mortality head-on and cried out to God for help. Many experienced fleeting but life-changing connections with their first responders. Often these crises became unexpected sources of inspiration.
Now Rodgers shares brief, real-life stories of heroic courage in the face of fear. In times of intense suffering, she has repeatedly witnessed signs of God’s quiet intervention and healing presence.

  • A man is resuscitated after Rodgers was able to repair a defibrillator–with her teeth!
  • Several bystanders help rescue a young girl who is accidentally buried alive in sand.
  • Rodgers also experienced some lighthearted moments, including the time she arrived at the scene of a crime only to find herself in the middle of a mystery dinner theater.

Experience the miracles, the life-and-death drama as you look at life from heaven’s edge.

Featured on the Catholic Corner Television Show, Telecare TV, Domestic Church Media, and Shalom World.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Andrea Jo Rodgers is the author of award-winning Christian middle grade fiction as well as inspirational adult nonfiction novels. She holds a clinical doctorate in physical therapy and specializes in women’s health, orthopedics, and lymphedema. She has served her community as a volunteer emergency medical technician for over thirty years, responding to more than 8,200 first aid and fire calls. She lives on the east coast with her husband, two children, and their two fur babies.

 

More from Andrea

I’ve always loved writing. In fact, I wrote my first “book” when I was in the first grade. It was about how my mother and brother rescued an injured baby duckling from our town’s lake, so I suppose writing about rescues has been in my blood from a young age.

Several years back, my son and I were in a terrifying elevator accident that event made me step back and take a close look at my life. I thought about my relationships with God, my family, and my friends. I also thought about my goals and my dreams. The accident inspired me to start writing.

I decided to write about my experiences as a volunteer with my town’s first aid squad. I hoped that people might be inspired or comforted by my stories. When I was finished the first draft, I thought that it needed something to pull it all together. That’s when I decided to explain the source of my inspiration for writing the book by including my own 911 call.

When I first joined the first aid squad, I was seventeen and was just starting my senior year of high school. I’ve been a volunteer EMT ever since. Over the years, I have served in many offices, including Captain and President. Currently, I’m the Lieutenant, a trustee, and treasurer of our foundation.

During my time with the squad, I have been fortunate to witness some utterly amazing things. At Heaven’s Edge: True Stories of Faith and Rescue describes inspirational and memorable first aid calls from my early years with the rescue squad, from my school years when I spent summers working as a beach cop through my first years as a physical therapist. Some of the stories in the book are what I would consider to be miracles, some are sad, but faith-filled, and a few humorous. I invite you to join me in experiencing what it is like to serve as a first responder.

Mindy Houng’s Q&A with Andrea Jo Rodgers

What does success as an author look like to you?

Success as an author is a multi-faceted concept to me. I love when a person tells me how my books changed their life or drops me a note to say how much they enjoyed reading my stories. Of course, good sales numbers and positive reviews are terrific too!

Which chapter was the most difficult to write?

The most difficult chapter in At Heaven’s Edge for me to write was the first. I actually wrote this chapter last. The reason it was the most difficult is because it described my own emergency in which my young son and I survived a life-threatening elevator accident. As I wrote the chapter, I relived the terror and pain. However, I also experienced gratitude that Jesus and our guardian angels saved us.

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

Some of the stories in At Heaven’s Edge are what I would consider to be miracles, some are sad, but faith-filled, and a few humorous. I hope that people will be inspired or comforted by the stories. Perhaps they will be able to relate them to an experience in their own lives. I also hope that the book inspires people to volunteer in whatever capacity they choose to help their community.

What is your vacation spot?

My favorite vacation spot is Williamsburg, VA. I went to the College of William and Mary, so I spent four happy years there. I love strolling through Colonial Williamsburg and learning about its history, eating at my favorite restaurants, shopping at the outlets, and visiting the college campus.

Why write nonfiction?

I enjoy writing nonfiction because it allows me to relate my true-life experiences as a volunteer with my local rescue squad. These stories provide readers with concrete examples of how God is at our side during emergencies. With that said, I’ve also thoroughly enjoyed writing two middle grade adventures, Saving the Statue of Liberty and Saving Mount Rushmore.

Thank you Andrea, for your time and letting us get to know you better!

Blog Stops

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 3

Texas Book-aholic, October 4

For Him and My Family, October 5

Stories By Gina, October 6 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, October 6

Inklings and notions, October 7

Sodbusterliving, October 8

For the Love of Literature, October 9

Simple Harvest Reads, October 10 (Author Interview)

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 10

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 12

Beauty in the Binding, October 13 (Author Interview)

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

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 14

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 15

Spoken from the Heart, October 16

Giveaway

At Heaven's Edge Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Andrea is giving away the grand prize package of signed copies of At Heaven’s Edge: True Stories of Faith and Rescue and On Heaven’s Doorstep: God’s Help in Times of Crisis-True Stories from a First Responder as well as 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/10198/at-heaven-s-edge-celebration-tour-giveaway

Miss Tavistock’s Mistake Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book:  Miss Tavistock’s Mistake

Author: Linore Rose Burkard

Genre:  Clean and Wholesome Regency Romance/Romantic Comedy

Release Date: June 4, 2020

Can Miss Tavistock’s mistake ever be undone?

Young Miss Tavistock is promised in marriage to Captain Rempeare by the wish of her dearly departed papa. But the captain’s been at sea for a decade. When she finally meets him, tempestuous sparks fly, and she impulsively adopts a daring false identity. Going by “Lady X,” she vows never to marry such an infuriating man.

Captain Gabriel Rempeare is prepared to fulfill his duty and marry Miss Tavistock—if only he can clap eyes on her. One circumstance or another keeps them apart, though he cannot seem to avoid the maddeningly lovely Lady X. When fate throws them together in London, Miss Tavistock discovers the real nature of the captain, and regrets her subterfuge. But can such a noble man forgive deceit? Or has her mistake already cost her everything?

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:

Miss Tavistock’s Mistake by Linore Rose Burkard is a Regency Romance/ Romantic Suspense. It is the first book in the Brides of Mayfair series The story was set in the summer of 1811 and features Margaret, a Duke’s ward and  Gabriel, a war hero.

 

What I think about this book:

This was such a fun read, I enjoyed every page of it. Margaret is a great character, she was raised privileged, but not as part of the ton. Having been raised by a recluse uncle and betrothed from a young age she was not used to the ins and out of society. I love how she was spunky and not willing to put up with Gabriel’s mistreatment and indifference. At times  her schemes were a little like quicksand, but I couldn’t help but root for her. Gabriel was also a fun character, he seemed aloof, but as the story unfolded I quickly started rooting for him as well. I enjoyed the quick quips between Margaret and Gabriel. I appreciate how Burkard wrote true historical events into the story. I enjoyed the book so much and look forward to reading the next book 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

Linore Rose Burkard is a serious watcher of period films, a Janeite, and hopeless romantic. An award winning author best known for Inspirational Regency Romance, her first book opened the genre for the CBA. Besides historical romance, Linore writes contemporary suspense (The Pulse Effex Series, as L.R. Burkard), contemporary romance (Falling In), and romantic short stories. Linore has a magna cum laude English Lit. degree from CUNY which she earned while taking herself far too seriously. She now resides in Ohio with her husband and family, where she turns her youthful angst into character or humor-driven plots.

 

More from Linore

Miss Tavistock experiences a frightening crush at the Prince Regent’s palace (Carlton House) toward the end of the book which leads to a romantically pivotal scene. But many readers don’t know that what happened that day at the palace really happened.
Here’s the scoop:
    The fete in June of 1811 was the Prince of Wales’ first real chance to celebrate his becoming Regent in February of that year in the lavish style he loved.
    Like Miss Tavistock, many in the haut ton anxiously coveted invitations. At first reserved only for the peerage and their offspring, by the time of the event, more than 2,000 invitations had been issued to all classes. The details in the story regarding the enormous preparations really happened, and much, much, more.
    Since our heroine was not able to garnish an invitation to the actual grand banquet, the extraordinary magnificence of the décor, food, and costume of that night had to be excluded from the book. But it was an unprecedented display, and both amazed and perplexed the guests.
     The prince was so happy with his lavish spectacle that he wished to share it with the public. The unruly crowd described in the book happened on the third day following the banquet. It was reported that more than 30,000 people tried to crowd their way in that day. Men and women lost hats, bonnets, coats, shawls, shoes, and even their under clothing. London papers afterwards claimed there were great tubs at Carlton House filled with all the lost items.  Our beleaguered heroine escapes with only her shoes and bonnet missing, but her stockings and gown are torn. Perfect situation to be rescued from!
    Contemporaries both praised and harshly criticized the affair. It was described as “an assemblage of beauty, splendor and profuse magnificence,” by admirers, but as  one of the princes’ “greatest follies and extravagances,” by detractors.3
If you’re not previously familiar with the Prince Regent (later George IV), this might give you an idea as to why I sometimes find him too irresistible a figure to leave out of a Regency novel. His extravagance, flamboyance and tempestuous lifestyle are just too ripe  fodder to ignore. Though he doesn’t appear in Miss Tavistock, I have numerous scenes in my first Regency series where he interacts with Phillip Mornay, ‘the Paragon,’ and hero of the books.
NOTE: This post is an abbreviated account of the event, which is included in more detail at the back of the book.
Question: Have you ever been trapped in a crowd? What was it like?

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, September 26

Rebecca Tews, September 26

Just Your Average reviews, September 26

Inklings and notions, September 27

Black ‘n’ Gold Girl’s Book Spot, September 27

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 28

Genesis 5020, September 28

Worthy2Read, September 29

Connie’s History Classroom, September 29

For Him and My Family, September 30

Betti Mace, September 30

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 1

Remembrancy, October 1

Artistic Nobody, October 2 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Blogging With Carol, October 2

Labor Not in Vain, October 2

Blossoms and Blessings, October 3

The Book Chic Blog, October 3

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 4

deb’s Book Review, October 4

Simple Harvest Reads, October 5 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

CarpeDiem, October 5

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 6

HookMeInABook, October 6

Splashes of Joy, October 7

Reading Is My SuperPower, October 7

Godly Book Reviews, October 8

Romances of the Cross, October 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9

As He Leads is Joy, October 9

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 9

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Linore is giving away the grand prize of a $30 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/10117/miss-tavistock-s-mistake-celebration-tour-giveaway

Jack Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Jack

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Historical Western Romance

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Women are trouble—lying, cheating, untrustworthy bundles of trouble.

Jack Clausen doesn’t need anyone but his horse and a boss who won’t interfere in his personal life—or lack of one.

Sure, he’s a lonely cowboy, but better lonely than brokenhearted.

If only he hadn’t met a girl who made him hope that honest and true women do exist. Maybe he wouldn’t be riding off into a snowstorm with a fresh determination to avoid women—indefinitely.

When Hazel Meissner sees a cowboy risk life, limb, and horse to save a child, she knows he’s someone special. When he finally gives her his heart, she considers herself the most blessed woman alive.

However, when he rides off without a word, she wonders if her heart will survive the loss.

One broken man. One trusting woman. One orchestrated misunderstanding that tears them apart. What’ll it take to bring Jack home again?

It’s Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing mashed up with the old ballad, “Cowboy Jack.” Don’t miss a cast of characters inspired by the Bard himself—especially Dirk and Deborah (Benedick & Beatrice).

Jack: a lot of hullaballoo on the prairie.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
Jack: a lot of hullabaloo on the prairie by Chautona Havig is a Historical Western Romance. The Story is a mashup of Shakespeare’s Much to Do about Nothing and the Western Ballad Cowboy Jack.

What I thought about this book:
This story was such a delight to read. I have never read any of Havig’s works that I did not like, but this book goes above and beyond expectation. It was like stepping into a western I love how the scenes that were set and the songs that were introduced throughout the books. Hazel was so sweet and tenderhearted. Jack is a man whose past caused him to distrust everyone. I loved Jack and Hazel, but also enjoyed the side stories of Dirk, Deborah and all of the background characters. The story had love, pain, forgiveness and redemption. It was at times heartbreaking, but captivating. I loved reading it and will recommend it to any fans of Western fiction.

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

Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

 

 

More from Chautona

The Inspiration I Hate to Love

The plaintive notes of a ballad filled the living room. People sat on couches and chairs or stood in the doorway, listening. Three steps up the staircase, out of view of most of the room, a little girl sat, chin in her hands, listening.

If you looked close, you’d see freckles dotting her nose and crooked teeth that never were too large for her mouth like most children’s were. Just a bit closer, and you’d see wide, hazel eyes riveted to the man with the guitar seated on the hearth. To his right, a cup of coffee and sometimes a shot of whiskey.

With a voice like Jim Reeves (the non-twangy Reeves, mind you), the songs told stories, like all ballads do—a little blind girl praying for her father’s future happiness, a girl of thirteen who barely escaped a massacre in 19th century Wyoming. “Hazel eyes,” the man called her. California Joe—he was a real man, although not as good of one as the song made out.

Sometimes the man sang happier songs, but most of them were slow, western ballads that could keep Nicolas Sparks writing for decades.

And the little girl loved them all—especially California Joe and one about a cowboy who left his sweetheart alone on the prairie after a quarrel. One called “Cowboy Jack.”

As you’ve probably surmised, I was the little girl, and that man who sang and stirred the hearts of our family at nearly every gathering was my father.

How I miss those days.

For years, I wanted to give Jack a happier ending. See, the song goes like this. A lonely cowboy (with a heart so brave and true) meets and falls in love with a maiden (with eyes of heaven’s own blue). Alas, as with all good romances, the couple quarrel and Jack rides away. He finds a new band of cowboys and would have been just fine, but someone asks him to sing a song to “drive all cares away.” Alas, the song he devises is one about a “lonely maiden who waited for her Jack.”

Of course, he rides off to ask forgiveness. It’s all his fault. He arrives too late. She died of a broken heart on the “lonely prairie where skies are always blue.”

After I began writing, the idea came to me to turn those songs Dad sang—old ones that had been passed on and down through many different versions—into novels. I’d write all the subtext the songs left out.

I’d give them happy endings.

Of course, that’s easier said than done. One by one, I figured out how to do it, but Jack… well, I didn’t want to change the stories. I just wanted to leave on hope instead of despair

Shakespeare to the rescue!

I was watching Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado about Nothing adaptation, and the answer came to me so clearly. It had the solution I needed. So, I smooshed the song and the play together. Inside, you’ll find the characters Shakespeare created (including Dirk and Deborah and their biting repartee—they steal the show!) in the setting and with the elements of the ballad, too.

Dad’s older now. His hands are gnarled with age, swollen with arthritis. His mind is slipping away. Today, you’ll find his guitar at my house. My son now owns it, but he doesn’t know the songs I heard played on the old Goya. Still, when I take it out of the case, tune it up, and pluck the strings, everything shifts. Suddenly, I’m nine years old again, sitting on my uncle’s stairs, just out of sight, watching. Listening. Heart breaking.

See, I’ll never hear my father play again, and I can’t play either. So, the songs will have to live on with stories of Mary, Jethro, Maggie… and of course, Jack.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 21

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 21

Connie’s History Classroom, September 22

deb’s Book Review, September 22

For the Love of Literature, September 23

Bigreadersite, September 23

Texas Book-aholic, September 24

lakesidelivingsite, September 24

Inklings and notions, September 25

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 25

For Him and My Family, September 26

Reviewingbooksplusmore, September 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 27

Hookmeinabook, September 27

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 28

Artistic Nobody, September 29 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 29

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 30

Lots of Helpers, September 30

She Lives To Read, October 1

Mary Hake, October 1

Daysong Reflections, October 2

Godly Book Reviews, October 2

Simple Harvest Reads, October 3 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Captive Dreams Window, October 3

Spoken from the Heart, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy of the book 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/10101/jack-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tour Reminders

  • Post on Blog by noon on your assigned day – Be sure to include book information, author information, giveaway, review, blog stops.
  • Be sure all pictures and links are active and working
  • Post on commercial sites (Amazon, Goodreads, Lifeway, CBD, etc)
  • Submit your review
  • Share on Facebook (include giveaway)
  • Tweet

Tour Information

Submit review here

Link to purchase book: https://amzn.to/3iQTcBD

Dropbox Link: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ex6yclp4d612ehj/AADUU3zojogCmIQFZGUpTXiTa?dl=0

Tour page on Celebrate Lit

Link for giveaway: https://promosimple.com/ps/10101/jack-celebration-tour-giveaway

Giveaway Code: 10101

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Scrumptious Independence Review and Giveaway

Scrumptious Independence FB Banner

About the Book

Scrumptious Independence-sm“Taste and see that the Lord is good.”

And so is Beth’s cooking! It’s a good thing, too. After a lifetime of her family’s smothering embrace, a whole new world opens to her with the passing of her beloved grandmother.

Armed with an inheritance she never expected and orders on how to use it, Beth sets off for Merriweather Island and fulfillment of a lifetime of dreams.

Or so she hopes.

What she didn’t hope for was what most women would—a man who fills her thoughts at the most wonderfully unwelcome times. She doesn’t have time or space for a relationship, but how do you tell love to just go away?

Of course, starting over in a new place is never easy, especially as an outsider in a small community. Add to that a mayor who has her dander up and a woman bound to make her life miserable, is it any wonder that Beth begins to doubt God’s and Gram’s plans?

With her heart betraying her resolve and challenges to her faith, Beth finds it takes bravery she didn’t know she had to discover just how scrumptious independence can be.

This “Merriweather book” is the second in a new series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Island Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

Click here to purchase your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:

  Scrumptious Independence by Melissa Wardlaw is the second book in the Independence Island series.  This book follows Dual Power of Convenience and the introductory book Christmas on Breaker’s Point and features some of the same characters. While it could be read as a standalone I recommend reading the previous books and getting to know the islands and their quirky residents as they add an extra layer of enjoyment to the series. This book features Beth, who inherits her Gram’s cottage on Merriweather and brings a food truck to the islands.

What I thought about this book:
This was such a fun read, with characters that are realistic and easy to relate to. Beth grew up visiting her grandparents every summer,  making friends and memories that stuck with her. I love how she is willing to step away from her life and give herself a chance to grow. This was a good story of her growing and realizing her worth.  I love the details that Wardlaw put into the story, talking about the foods and most of all the Bronco.  Scott was the guy that girls dream of, a guy who even after years apart respects you and is willing to wait for you. I love how realistically their friendship grew. I couldn’t get enough of this story and am really looking forward to the rest of the books 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

Melissa Wardwell

Melissa Wardwell resides in Owosso, Michigan with her husband Jonathan, three children, a cat, and two pitbulls.

Besides writing, she enjoys reading, having coffee with friends, and spending quality time with her husband kayaking and fishing.

Melissa likes to joke about the voices in her head, but it is those voices have inspired her to write several romance novels such as “I Know the Plans” (a story based in her hometown of Owosso) and “Finding Hope in Savannah”. When she is not penning works of fiction, she is busy reviewing books on her blog, Back Porch Reads.

To see more from Melissa Wardwell, visit www.melissawardwell.com

 

More from Melissa

“Lord, I don’t know how I can keep doing this.”

That was my prayer one evening in 2019 as I made my way to praise practice. I knew that writing was something God had called me to (because He never seems to call you to do something you enjoy) but the finances were just not there to publish another book. I felt lost in the uncertainty of the path moving forward and I needed a light. I had just shared all my concerns with my parents and left with my dad’s words ringing in my head. Are you writing to gain notoriety or are you writing for God?

The next morning, CelebrateLit had a post looking for submissions for a new and innovative series. Hope burst within me and I know I needed more information. I followed instructions and spoke with Sandy Barela and Chautona Havig. The more I was told, the more excited I became because I knew I needed to be part of this collection.

Ideas were hatched, characters began to talk, and a book proposal was sent. I continued to work on the development of characters and the mobile business knowing in my heart that God had given me this opportunity. I wouldn’t do things halfway. And when the confirmation email came, I was ready to share the beautiful story and characters that developed.

Beth is a food truck proprietor, so that means she spends most of her time cooking. In an effort to grow her recipes, I have been making videos of me cooking some of our family’s favorites as well as raiding my mom’s recipe box. The result is some amazing food to share.

Every book, pre-order card, and my YouTube channel has recipes on it. And so will this tour.

With it being summertime, our family doesn’t want those heavy meals so sometimes chips and sandwiches are all we need in the evenings. One favorite is my chicken salad.

Now, this recipe is easily substituted with other things like however, you like your chicken.

 

Melissa’s Chicken Salad

Feeds 4 (unless you have big eaters.)

2 cans of chicken (you can use cooked but this is quick and easy

1/2 cup of red grapes – halved

1/2 cup celery – diced

Make sure you rinse all of this well as you prep the salad

Dressing

1 1/2 cup of miracle whip (you can use mayo)

1/2 tsp mustard powder

1 tbsp white vinegar

1 tsp of sugar

Mix everything together and serve on your favorite bread option or on a bed of lettuce. I like mine in a pita pocket or on lettuce. This time it was with a pita pocket with a side of lightly salted chips and a pickle.

Now, just a little side note, you can add what ever veggie or fruit you like. Apples and cucumbers would be a great addition as well. So, don’t feel like you have to do things exactly like I do. Make it your own.

 

Bon appétit

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 21

Soulfully Romantic, September 21

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 21

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 22

Texas Book-aholic, September 22

Inklings and notions, September 22

For Him and My Family, September 23

deb’s Book Review, September 23

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

She Lives To Read, September 24

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, September 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 24

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 24

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

Quiet Workings, September 25

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 25

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions , September 26

Older & Smarter?, September 26

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 26

Blogging With Carol, September 27

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, September 27

Batya’s Bits, September 27

Emily Yager, September 28

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 28

Stories By Gina, September 28

Reviewingbooksplusmore, September 28

CarpeDiem, September 29

Christian Bookaholic, September 29

Cultivating Us, September 29

Aryn the Libraryan, September 30

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 30

Connect in Fiction, October 1

The Collaborative Press, October 1

Livin’ Lit, October 1

Simple Harvest Reads, October 2 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

The Meaderings of a Bookworm, October 2

Godly Book Reviews, October 2

Joanne Markey, October 3

Captive Dreams Window, October 3

Vicky Sluiter, October 3

Blossoms and Blessings, October 4

Splashes of Joy, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Melissa 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/10105/scrumptious-independence-celebration-tour-giveaway