A Deeper Love Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Deeper Love

Author: Heidi Gray McGill

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release Date: October 31, 2023

What was that movie line about relationships built on intense experiences?  Oh, yeah. They never work.

I get paid to do my dream job, usually by wealthy men who thrive on adventure. But when their adrenaline rush is gone and vacation is over, I’m still here, on a tropical island, with people who mostly leave me alone. And I like it that way.

Except for this guy. Seriously, Dan is the last man I want to get involved with. If he got Decompression Illness, the doctors would likely call it Mercedes Bends. He’s privileged and entitled and would never leave his city life behind for the challenges of living on a remote island. Which is a total relief, I’m telling you.

Don’t get me wrong—he’s prime shark bait, but I’m not ready to fall deeply in love with someone who won’t stay. There’s no such thing as going “too deep” where spiritual things are concerned. But when it comes to relationships, I’ll stay at the surface and snorkel rather than dive into the depths.

Take a trip to the Suamalie Islands where palm trees sway, the sand and sea pulse with life, and the people will steal your heart.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you need to know:

 A Deeper Love by Heidi Gray McGill  is the ninth book in the Suamalie Islands series. The series is  Contemporary Christian Fiction set on a fictional set of Islands in the Pacific. The series is written by several authors with stories that have the common connection of the Islands. In this book we go to Isle of Tiga to meet Island resident Alicia Garry and tourist Daniel McMaster

 

What you might need to know:

Alicia lost her mother to cancer when she was a young child and her father  five years prior to this story. While it is not key to this story it is talked about during the book.

 

What I think about this book:

I really enjoyed this story. McGill created complex characters who are easy to relate to. I enjoyed seeing Alicia’s character evolve during the story,  she felt so realistic.  Daniel was interesting, I felt like we didn’t really get to know him until the last quarter of the book. I loved how diving was described during the book. I have never been , but the author brought it to life in my imagination. I can’t wait to see how the other residents of Tiga pop up in future stories. I appreciate how the author showed the hidden side of tourist destinations and locals sometimes struggle with poverty while living amongst and working for the tourist.  I am excited to read 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

Whether historical or contemporary, you will find Heidi’s Christian Fiction works to be full of God’s redeeming love.

Everything Heidi writes is purposeful. She believes in bringing a reader into the awareness of who God is to them and how He interacts with them on a personal level. She does this by crafting characters so relatable you feel part of who they are.

Heidi reaches deep into the reader’s heart through masterfully written words and offers ways toward healing by seamlessly applying God’s Word throughout her stories.

Heidi and her husband of 30+ years live in South Carolina. Besides writing Christian fiction with relatable characters in life-changing stories, Heidi relishes time with family and friends. She enjoys scrapbooking, playing games, traveling, and building bridges with her grandsons that must fall with a loud crash and usually involve a monster truck.

More from Heidi

My husband and I are scuba divers. I prefer clear water, bright fish, live coral, and the gentle swells of the ocean. I also enjoy the peaceful cenotes of Mexico, where being above water is just as stunning as being under. My husband has taken me to some remote and beautiful places.

My favorite scuba trip was to the Island of Dominica in the Caribbean, where my parents served as volunteer missionaries. On that trip, I saw a baby octopus and felt the boiling water from the active volcano vents as it bubbled up from the ocean floor.

My husband prefers diving for shark teeth and treasure in murky, fast-moving, brackish water. He thinks running into alligators, catfish the size of large dogs, and snapping turtles is part of the adventure. He also is an extreme cave diver, relishing the challenge of seeing places few have ventured. Small places and dark water are not my thing.

Owning a scuba shop seemed like the natural choice for my main character in A Deeper Love. Being able to share the underwater world and beauty of a tropical island through words became my next challenge.

Alicia Garry, affectionately known as Algae, is as formidable as her military father. She’s adventuresome and intelligent unless it comes to love. Then, she lives up to her family name, which means watchful in French. Relationships with clients never end well since they always leave, so she keeps things professional with her customers.

That is until she meets Daniel McMaster. Like most of Alicia’s clientele, Daniel is a businessman who craves adventure from his dull life. He comes from money, makes and spends money, and is way out of her league.

When she has feelings for Daniel, she wonders if she’s swallowed a bit too much seawater.

In A Deeper Love, you’ll meet a boat captain with cheesy jokes, a kind neighbor child who melts hearts, and a God who knows the future. Throw in some Little Mermaid quotes and songs, and this story comes alive with romance and Algae’s desire to be part of Daniel’s world.

Book a trip today with Scuba Deux Adventures Dive Shop, where you’ll embark on an adventure far beyond the ocean’s depths.

Blog Stops

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, January 15 (Author Interview)

Lighthouse-Academy, January 15

She Lives To Read, January 16

Texas Book-aholic, January 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 18

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, January 19

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 20

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 22

Sylvan Musings, January 23 (Author Interview)

The Lit Lady, January 23

Simple Harvest Reads, January 24 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, January 25

Holly’s Book Corner, January 26

Karen Baney Reviews, January 27

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, January 28 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Heidi is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 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/2979f/a-deeper-love-celebration-tour-giveaway

Of Sea and Smoke Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Of Sea and Smoke

Author: Gillian Bronte Adams

Genre: YA Epic Fantasy

Release Date: November 21, 2023

He rides a seablood, a steed of salt and spray, born to challenge the tides.

Six years ago, the wrong brother survived, and nothing will ever convince Rafi Tetrani otherwise. But he is done running from his past, and from the truth. As civil war threatens Ceridwen’s tenuous rule in Soldonia, Rafi vows to fight the usurper sitting on the imperial throne of Nadaar, even if it means shouldering his brother’s responsibilities as the empire’s lost heir.

The stolen shipload of magical warhorses offers just the edge he needs. But the steeds have been demanded in ransom by the emperor’s ruthless assassin, and if Rafi hopes to raise a band of riders, he must first outwit his brother’s murderer.

Yet when his best efforts end in disaster, and an audacious raid sparks an empire-wide manhunt, even forging an unexpected alliance might not be enough to help Rafi turn the tides, let alone outrace the wave of destruction intent on sweeping them all away.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy

This is book 2 of The Fireborn Epic and the series should be read in order. This book does give some background info that is pertinent to the overarching theme of fighting against the evil empire to regain their nation of Soldonia but reading the first book will give you all the nuances to the main characters and the subplots.

Ceridwen continues to grow as a leader and a warrior and I quite enjoyed the themes of bravery, courage, and leadership portrayed through her character. Rafi embraces his calling and bonding and I loved how he rises up to conquer his fear at every challenge. Jakim is such an opposite to the other two characters embroiled in war and his path and bonding are quite refreshing. Though he’s a secondary character, I loved Finnian and his steadfast support of Ceridwen. I found Sahak’s chapter at the end of both books interesting; a glimpse into the mind of one of the villains always brings a new perspective.

There is plenty of action, battle scenes, betrayal, and surprises waiting for you in this epic fantasy. The world is well-crafted and fascinating and the characters are lovable. The book is long but those who enjoy this genre will definitely enjoy this book and series. The series is not finished yet though – there is book 3 coming, which should be centered around Jakim.

I received a complimentary copy courtesy of Enclave Publishing via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive comment. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Gillian Bronte Adams writes epic fantasy novels, including the award- winning Of Fire and Ash and The Songkeeper Chronicles. She loves strong coffee, desert hikes, and trying out new soup recipes on crisp fall nights. Her favorite books are the ones that make your heart ache and soar in turn. When she’s not creating vibrant new worlds or dreaming up stories that ring with the echoes of eternity, she can be found off chasing sunsets with her horse, or her dog, Took.

 

 

 

More from Gillian

One of my favorite things about writing epic fantasy is not actually what you might expect. It’s not the fantastical elements, although I absolutely love creating worlds filled with magical warhorses, sosswyrm tangles, and stone-eye tigers who can paralyze their prey with a glance. It’s not the intensity of the action or the world altering stakes, although there’s nothing quite so thrilling as throwing your characters into a do-or-die situation, and the pulse-pounding, breathtaking, heart-aching battle sequences that follow.

Instead, one of my favorite things about writing such wild and epic stories is the opportunity to ground them in very real, very human characters, with very real, very human emotions, and in the complexity of those characters’ relationships with others. Mentor relationships, deeply loyal friendships, and especially sibling relationships.

I am the second-born of five siblings, and I love and admire each of my siblings. Each one encourages and inspires and awes me in his or her own unique way. But growing up, if you had told me that my older sister had hung the moon, I would have believed you. She was two and a half years older than me—and yes, that half year mattered to both of us, though for opposite reasons; she because it meant she was that much older, me because it meant we were that much closer. Somehow, everything she touched seemed golden, and I wanted to be a part of it too.

She was a force of nature—a foaming ocean tide—and I was caught up in her wake.

She took up horseback riding, and so did I. She picked up books, and I had to read them too, even if it meant sitting beside her in the car with my own book open on my lap, surreptitiously reading hers over her shoulder. (Needless to say, that drove her crazy, and older siblings everywhere can probably commiserate.)

She dove into creative writing, and out of nowhere, I developed a passion for the written word. But always, within her, there was this spark of imagination and creativity that I felt I could only ever aspire to. Whatever I did, she had done first and better.

And I could only hope to one day achieve her level of greatness.

Rafi, one of the main characters in Of Sea and Smoke, also has an older sibling, a brother he has always looked up to. While Rafi and his relationship with his brother is not based on my relationship with my older sister—we’re all four of us wildly different people—there were some aspects of my experience as a second-born that I was able to draw upon. Rafi admires his brother’s strength and confidence. His assurance and rightness. His nobility and leadership. By the time we enter the story, his older brother is no longer around, but Rafi has spent his whole life setting his brother up on a pedestal and then trying to measure up to that ideal.

Is it any wonder, then, that he has always found himself wanting?

Now, Rafi finds himself having to step into the role that should have been his brother’s, and the only way he can contemplate facing that challenge is by stamping out the things he looks down upon in himself—many of them, the things that make him himself—and trying to be his brother instead.

Growing up, I can’t tell you how many times I looked at my older sister and wished that I could be more like her and less like myself. More confident. More brilliant. More vibrant. More her. But it wasn’t until my older sister’s interests began to drift into new additional avenues, while mine stayed mostly the same (horses, books, writing), that I finally began to grow into myself. To recognize my strengths, my unique skills, the things that only I bring to the table, and to acknowledge that even when they are different from hers, they are still good.

These days, my older sister and I are best friends. She was the first person I trusted to read Of Sea and Smoke before it went out into the world. I still look up to her in so many ways, and yes, I think I’ll always feel a bit like she hung the moon. But I have grown to appreciate the beauty of what I can learn from my sister’s strengths, while also recognizing the value of my own. And without revealing any spoilers, I think I can safely say that part of Rafi’s journey in Of Sea and Smoke wraps around learning that too, all while he’s raising a band of rebel fighters, trying to outwit an infamous assassin, and plotting to overthrow the empire’s oppressive rule.

Wild, epic stories, grounded in real, human experiences, and honestly, can reading get any more fun than that?

I hope you enjoy the ride!

Gillian Bronte Adams

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 2

Through the Fire Blogs, December 3 (Author Interview)

Labor Not in Vain, December 3

Texas Book-aholic, December 4

Artistic Nobody, December 5 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 6

Guild Master, December 7 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 8

Blossoms and Blessings, December 9 (Author Interview)

Blogging With Carol, December 10

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 11 (Author Interview)

Simple Harvest Reads, December 12 (Guest Review from Mindy)

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, December 13 (Author Interview)

By The Book, December 14 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, December 14

Fiction Book Lover, December 15 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Gillian is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card and hardcover 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/2909e/of-sea-and-smoke-celebration-tour-giveaway

Lumen Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Lumen

Author: J. J. Fischer

Genre: Fantasy (adult)

Release Date: December 5, 2023

What if erasing the past cost more than you were willing to pay?

Having narrowly escaped their enemies, Sephone, Dorian, and Cass continue their search for the elusive Silvertongue, the only one with knowledge of the Reliquary’s whereabouts. But time is running out for Sephone, and with Dorian accused of high treason, the quest takes on a new urgency.

As secrets from each of their pasts drive a wedge between them, Sephone invests all her hopes in finding her homeland, Lethe—where her family may yet be alive. But nothing about Lethe is as she expects, and disappointment, betrayal, and danger await her at every turn.

When the truth about the Reliquary’s curse comes to light, the fragile bonds between the unlikely companions are tested like never before. Meanwhile, Dorian faces a terrible choice: to save the life of one who is beginning to mean more to him than the past he’s so desperate to forget, or to save his beloved Caldera from dangers outside and within.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy

“How you respond to your heartache will chart the very course of your life.”
If you thought Calor, the first book in the series, was action-packed, intense, and full of surprises, Lumen will take you on a journey more treacherous, complex, and heart-pounding than you could imagine. I loved the growth in the three major characters Sephone, Dorian, and Cass. Though I wasn’t a huge fan of the tangled web of feelings among them, I sympathized with their confusion and emotions. Cass still doesn’t have a direct voice in the story, but we get to know him pretty well by the end of this book. Sephone perseveres as the loyal, sacrificial powerhouse willing to do whatever it takes to help Dorian and bring down the evil king. Dorian vacillates between selfish pursuits and noble sacrifice for most of the book, which makes him more human and relatable.
I loved the new secondary characters and their depth. I also loved that discussions of spiritual nature and faith appeared here, which I hope the author will expound upon in the next book. And there is a first person narration from “an unexpected foe”! I’m dying to know who this foe is.
Crafted with skill, energy and fascinating imagination, Lumen will dazzle you as the author brings you deeper into this incredible post-apocalyptic world. You should read the series in order since Lumen picks up from where Calor left off.

I received a complimentary copy courtesy of Enclave Publishing via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive comment. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

J.J. Fischer’s writing dream began with the anthology of zoo animals she painstakingly wrote and illustrated at age five. Jasmine began writing her first proper novel at age fourteen, which eventually became her debut fantasy series, The Darcentaria Duology, which was published in 2021. She is a qualified psychologist with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in clinical psychology. When Jasmine isn’t killing defenseless house plants, she enjoys devouring books, dabbling in floristry, playing the piano, and wishing it rained more often. Jasmine is married to David, and together they make their home a couple of hours north of Sydney, Australia.

 

More from J.J.

Have you noticed how much less we’re participating in life these days?

Here in Australia, we have a show called Gogglebox where we watch people on their couches watching (and commentating on) our favorite TV shows from the last seven days. Sometimes, you don’t even need to have seen the shows. But it’s fun to watch other people watching TV, often because they have the same reactions we have to particular scenes.

The widespread popularity of a show like Gogglebox is telling because it demonstrates just how comfortable we’ve become with observing and commentating on other peoples’ lives. We’re quick to critique and criticize and dismiss. So much of our human experience is now mediated through screens and technology and social media that we’ve lost a great deal of the beauty and simplicity of life.

How often does a long walk through autumn leaves or a swim at the beach refresh our spirit, yet we rarely get out of the house or away from our busy schedules in order to do so?

In the post-apocalyptic world of The Nightingale Trilogy, people no longer have access to the technology and comforts of the “world-that-was,” so they choose to vicariously enjoy its pleasures by re-experiencing old memories, which can be physically extracted and drunk like potions. Nostalgia is the currency of the day, and the gifted individuals who can manipulate these memories—known as alters or mems—are exceptionally prized.

The female main character, Sephone Winter, is a young slave who can selectively edit memories with a single touch of a person’s skin. But Sephone is increasingly aware that there’s something different about the memories of the old world that she extracts from donors’ minds. They’re much more faded, and less vivid, than the real thing. And she begins to suspect that habitually enjoying these second-hand and third-hand experiences comes at the price of a person’s humanity, self-awareness, and even their capacity to love.

After meeting an old veteran with a first-hand memory of strawberries—who tells Sephone that even this is a shadow of the real thing—she begins a journey to discover what authentic experience really looks like, and if there’s something more to hope for than the faded artifacts of a long-dead world.

Sephone’s discoveries have relevance and meaning for all of us in this world where life’s pleasures are often smoke and mirrors. Since the Fall, our lives are full of counterfeit things. They sound good, they look right—more real, sometimes, than the real thing—but they’re ultimately an imitation that doesn’t satisfy us the way we thought and hoped they would.

As a Christian, I believe that if we rely on counterfeit things to satisfy our souls, we’re always going to end up hungry. As David Foster Wallace famously once said, worshipping the stuff of this world will inevitably “eat us alive.” False truth and false gods always break the hearts of their worshippers.

But unmet needs are a signpost pointing to a better way, a deeper truth. As C.S. Lewis wisely commented: “If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.”

The Nightingale Trilogy is another world, a fantasy context, a different time period. But it’s really us. I hope, as you read, that it stirs in you a hunger for truth, for real things; a desire to connect with the Author of your soul. I can testify that He’s out of this world!

Cherish the Real,

Jasmine

Blog Stops

Fiction Book Lover, December 7 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, December 8

Artistic Nobody, December 9 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, December 9

Simple Harvest Reads, December 10 (Guest Review from Mindy)

Guild Master, December 11 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 12

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 13

For the Love of Literature, December 14 (Author Interview)

Wishful Endings, December 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 16

Through the Fire Blogs, December 17 (Author Interview)

Book Butterfly in Dreamland, December 17

Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, December 18

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

Blogging With Carol, December 20

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, J.J. is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card along with a signed copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/29249/lumen-celebration-tour-giveaway

Steal Fire from the Gods Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Steal Fire from the Gods

Author: Clint Hall

Genre: Science Fiction

Release Date: November 7, 2023

The Human Alliance knew the war was over when the machines started using magic to cast fire, shake the ground, conjure storms, and part the seas.

We fought back anyway.

22-year-old soldier Gunnar Graves lost his faith and his family when a platoon of AI-driven war machines—led by an android fire mage— destroyed his unit. Forced to live in a machine-controlled village and hiding a dark secret, he spends his days trying to learn elemental power so he can take his revenge. After years of failure, his ability ignites when he least expects it.

On the run and hunted by the war machines, Gunnar discovers that an ancient, life-based strength has awakened to help humanity fight back. Joined by the other life mages, Gunnar is thrust into a mad world of android overlords, cyborg clans, and evil forces bent on his destruction.

To protect his newfound family, Gunnar must discover the truth behind a power he doesn’t understand and wage a war he doesn’t believe they can win.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Clint Hall is a storyteller, speaker, and podcast host. He has been writing stories since middle school, where he spent most of his time in class creating comic books. (Fortunately, his teacher not only allowed it; she bought every issue.) Known for instilling a sense of hope, wonder, and adventure, Clint’s work has been published across multiple anthologies and magazines. Find him at ClintHall.com or “The Experience: Conversations with Creatives” podcast, available on all major platforms.

 

More from Clint

When I first heard the song See A Victory by Elevation Worship, I assumed the lyrics, “You took what the enemy meant for evil and You turned it for good,” were pulled verbatim (translated, of course) from the Bible, probably one of Paul’s letters.

Despite not knowing exactly from where they came, the words stuck with me. It’s inspiring to believe that God can take the terrible things that have happened to us – or even because of us – and use them to bring about something beautiful.

When I looked them up, I found that the lyrics are actually a derivation of what Joseph said to his brothers years after they sold him into slavery. “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” (Genesis 50:20 NIV)

Placing the words within the context of a story makes them even more impactful for me. It’s astounding to think about Joseph’s faith and spiritual maturity to not only offer forgiveness in this moment, but also to recognize the immense benefits that have arisen from such a horrific injustice against him.

It wasn’t until recently that I realized how much this passage is related to my book. That’s the funny thing about writing stories. You often don’t know what they’re about until you’re done.

Steal Fire From The Gods is the most faith-based story I’ve ever written. It’s also the darkest and certainly the weirdest. It’s an action-packed book in which AI has discovered the secrets of elemental magic and used that power to overthrow humanity.

But that’s just the concept. This story isn’t about magic robots. It’s about a person undergoing a crisis of faith. And you could hardly blame him.

Gunnar Graves and his family did everything the right way. They were faithful, devoted, and kind. They prayed, studied God’s Word, and followed His laws. Then, they were decimated. As a result, Gunnar is angry at God and even at his late parents for their blind faith that – from his perspective – ultimately failed them all.

Gunnar spends much of the story trying to harness magic for what he believes is a righteous cause. But despite his altruistic intentions, it eludes him, causing him even more anger and frustration. How could an all-powerful, all-loving God place such an awesome power into the hands of oppressive machines instead of mankind?

To make matters worse, Gunnar and other characters in the story have secrets that I won’t spoil in this blog. Suffice to say there are aspects of who they are and what they have done that would cause most people to cast them out if the truth became known. So instead, they hide themselves from God and other humans. More separation. More shame. More darkness.

It often feels that way for believers. In our weakness, we can simultaneously be angry at God for what we perceive as injustice – getting what we don’t think we deserve, or not getting what we think we do – while also being convinced there is something about us that will prevent us from ever connecting with His love, joy, and peace.

But there is always hope. God often reminds us of His presence by not only saving us from our circumstances but also using our weaknesses as tools to create wonderful outcomes. Paradoxically, good comes about not in spite of evil, but seemingly because of it.

As believers, we understand this is not a function of necessity. To bring about this good, God did not need evil to occur. But He will use it to demonstrate His ability to turn the enemy’s own weapons against him.

These occurrences wouldn’t make sense outside the knowledge that there is an all-powerful, all-loving Father. That reminder of His presence – that He must be with us because otherwise, such good springing from such evil would be impossible – is in many cases a greater blessing than the good itself.

But He will not force these blessings upon us. We are free to choose whether we will trust and accept them. We do so through faith, selflessness, and surrender.

That’s where we find the power. That’s where we find goodness. That’s where we find hope.

That’s what I want readers to take away from this book.

Interview with the Author

What does success as an author look like to you?

Thanks for having me on your blog!

What a great question. I’m afraid my answer is going to sound shallow or boringly practical.

Success for me as an author would be earning enough of a living that I could support my family, take them on vacations every so often, and be able to unplug from work during those times, but also still love the work so much that I’m also excited to get back to it.

But I’m also okay if that doesn’t happen, you know? If I’m writing stories from the heart that feel authentic to me and connect with readers, that also feels like success. Or it might be if I’m writing something fun and engaging that gives people a welcomed break for a little while. Sometimes, that’s all you need from a book; there’s nothing wrong with that, either.

Which character did you connect to best in this book?

The lead character, Gunnar, is going through a crisis of faith. His parents did everything right; they prayed, worshipped, read their Bibles, and cared for people. Then, they were decimated, and he was taken prisoner. But despite all that, he can’t help but hold onto the lingering shreds of his faith.

I’ve sometimes felt that way, gone through periods when my faith became far more academic than emotional. I believed in God, but it had been long since I felt His presence. Those can be challenging times, but they can also be essential to our growth and faith.

What is your favorite Bible verse or life verse?

It’s the “Do not worry” section from the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew Chapter 6. I often have to remind myself of two truths. The first is that so many things in life about which I get so stressed are really of minuscule importance compared to my salvation through Jesus.

The other truth is that nothing can compare with the power of God, who loves us, knows what we need, and will provide. That’s an amazing assurance.

What is your vacation spot?

We don’t have a “go-to” spot right now, but my favorite vacation ever was in Ireland. My wife and I spent a week driving through the middle of the country on those small roads lined by stone walls, looking at sheep and cows while we talked about everything on our minds.

You couldn’t turn around in Ireland without seeing another breathtaking view. It was impossible to take a bad picture. We stayed in old castles converted into hotels and spent an afternoon doing falconry, which was terrific. A double rainbow arched over the road as we drove back to the airport to head home.

But beyond that, I’ve never had such a sense of home in another country. I can’t wait to go back.

10)If you could have one book or piece of art or music on a deserted island, what would it be and why?

Okay, so obviously, my honest answer is the Bible. But for fun, I’ll choose something else.

It’s such a difficult question because it’s not the same as asking my favorite book (which is probably World War Z, by the way). I have to choose something that I would read repeatedly that would hopefully keep me entertained and lift my spirits when needed.

It would be cheating to say a collected edition of The Chronicles of Narnia or The Lord of the Rings, although those are great choices. But I think a collection of short stories would be allowed.

A photographer friend gave me a book called The Best From Fantasy and Science Fiction, which was published sometime in the 1950s and includes short stories from C.S. Lewis, Isaac Asimov, Jules Verne, and so many more. I’ll go with that.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, November 14

Artistic Nobody, November 15 (Author Interview)

Exploring the Written Word, November 15

Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, November 16

Guild Master, November 17 (Author Interview)

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, November 18

Through the Fire Blogs, November 19 (Author Interview)

Wishful Endings, November 20

Beauty in the Binding, November 21 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 22

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 23

Simple Harvest Reads, November 24 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, November 24

Blogging With Carol, November 25

Labor Not in Vain, November 26

Fiction Book Lover, November 27 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Clint is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and signed copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/29094/steal-fire-from-the-gods-celebration-tour-giveaway

A Courageous Betrothal Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Courageous Betrothal

Author: Denise Weimer

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: November 7, 2023

A wounded lieutenant, a woman fierce enough to protect her family, and an American Revolution with everything at stake.

Red-haired, freckle-faced and almost six feet tall, Jenny White has resigned herself to fame over love. Possessing the courage and wits to guard her younger siblings against nature, natives, and loyalists in Georgia’s “Hornet’s Nest” gives life meaning until she meets scout, Caylan McIntosh.

From the time Jenny nurses the young lieutenant back to health after the Battle of Kettle Creek, she can’t deny her attraction to the vexing Highlander, who seems determined to dismantle her emotional armor. But when Georgia falls to the British and Caylan returns to guide Jenny’s family on a harrowing exodus into the North Carolina mountains, will his secrets prove stronger than his devotion? Or will their love be courageous enough to carry them through the battles ahead.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you should know:
A Courageous Betrothal Christian Historical Fiction by Denise Weimer is the second book in the Scouts of the Georgia Frontier Series.  It is set in 1778 Frontier Georgia and  can be read as a standalone. The story follows Jenny White who works to save her family during the American Revolution.

What you might need to know:
This book tries to give an authentic portrayal from a settler’s perspective, it does include both conflict with Native Americans and hostility between the British and Americans. It gives a brutal look at wartime violence.
Jenny is not a traditional beauty and lacks self confidence about her appearance.

What I think about this book:
This is such a fast paced, riveting story. Jenny is an amazing character,  I love how she was based on a real person. I found her strength and resilience to be admirable. I wish that this book had been longer and would have loved to have read from Caylan’s perspective. The author’s research and authenticity shines throughout the story. I can’t wait to read more in this series!

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

About the Author

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

More from Denise

Welcome to the Hornet’s Nest…the setting for A Courageous Betrothal. In my Scouts of the Georgia Frontier Series, we started with my September release, A Counterfeit Betrothal, in 1813. We’ve moved backward in time to middle Georgia, where the conflict between Patriots, Loyalists, and Native Americans became so intense during the American Revolution the area was dubbed “the Hornet’s Nest.” Little is known about this portion of the war, but it’s not just the setting that makes A Courageous Betrothal unique.

If the story sounds faintly familiar, that’s because it was originally Across Three Autumns of Barbour’s Backcountry Brides (2018). That’s why it’s a short novella instead of a full-length novel. The story became a free agent just in time to join my Scouts of the Georgia Frontier. It was a perfect fit not only because of the subject matter but also because some of the real people and places show up in this story as well as the novels of the series.

Another thing that sets A Courageous Betrothal apart is its heroine. As authors, we occasionally create characters who take on life and burst off the page. That’s Jenny White. Maybe because she was based on a real person, Nancy Hart. Six feet tall, red-haired, pock-marked, and a crack shot, Nancy was called “Wahatche” or “War Woman” by local Indians. She spied for Colonel Elijah Clark and captured Loyalists and British soldiers on more than one occasion. Her exploits are echoed in Jenny’s.

So are her insecurities, which make her relatable. Jenny’s given up on the notion of finding love. Men always prefer women like her dainty younger sister. And then she meets Caylan McIntosh, a scout for Colonel Clark whose Highland heritage makes him an ardent admirer of Jenny’s strength. Her doubts—along with the shorter word count and the time needed for love to grow between wartime encounters—are a reason I chose to write the novella solely from Jenny’s POV.

By no means does Jenny outshine Caylan. He’s still probably the most swoon-worthy hero I’ve written. Here’s a little snippet of him persuading Jenny to dance.

 

The unseen fiddler took his cue. The notes anchored themselves inside Jenny’s chest, with invisible strings tugging her toward the sound. Caylan and presumably several other Scots started a jig. From his fancy footwork and agile leaps, the lieutenant appeared dead sober. She found herself propping the pitchfork against a wall and drifting closer in the shadows, her mother’s previous warning drowned out in the waterfall of lilting notes.

When the musician warbled into “Soldier’s Joy,” a woman faced off with her husband. As they greeted and turned, two frontiersmen leapt up to join them. Caylan looked around as though searching for a partner and noticed Jenny standing just outside the circle of light. He came toward her, hand outstretched.

“Come, lass, will ye dance with me? Ye know this one.”

Indeed, she did. She had seen settlers perform the steps on the Yadkin River. Before Jenny had time to think, Caylan whirled her into the circle, and a man dancing a female part grabbed her for a ladies’ chain. She caught a brief glimpse of Gabriel’s alarmed face as she whizzed past.

Delighted with the actual women who joined them, the men paid courtly attention that caused Jenny’s face to flame. But none more than the sensation of Caylan’s eyes, warm amber in the firelight, fixed on her every time they met. The roughened strength of his large hand made hers feel small.

When the song changed, Jenny gave an awkward curtsy and tried to back away, but her partner caught her arm. “’Tis just a Cumberland Reel.”

“I know no Cumberland Reel. Remember, we do not dance.”

“Oh. I did forget that.” But Caylan’s smirk hinted otherwise. “Seems to me Wahatchee would not grow lily-livered at a wee promenade. See, ’tis only a skip step, toe to heel?”

Jenny turned her lips down. “Wahatchee has a mother.”

Caylan threw his head back and laughed. “What? That slip of a woman has a Highland princess like you all a’cower?”

“I am English, sir.” She clasped her hands behind her petticoats.

“Well, pardon me, my lady,” he retorted with mock offense, “but yer regal bearing and coloring beg otherwise. I wager some hint of Celtic besmears the White family past…far back in the recesses of time, no doubt.”

The “regal coloring” went up in flames. Jenny repeated what she’d heard her mother proudly state many times. “We come from pure English stock.”

“Well, then, I dare ye to prove a proper English lady has no fear of a Cumberland Reel.”

“Those are break teeth words, McIntosh. If I chose, I could dance until daybreak, and still be dancing long after you collapse.” So saying, Jenny stalked to the tail of the reel and waited for the laughing Scotsman to follow her.

Just like firing a gun, riding a horse, clearing brush, and swimming, dancing provided no challenge. Jenny did all physical things well and with endurance. What she had not expected, however, was the way Caylan’s obvious approval made her feel. It answered a craving deep inside that she had attempted to discredit for years. Not to mention the brush of his fingertips, the pressure of his hand on her waist, spread the bonfire to her bones.

From that moment to Jenny nursing Caylan back to health after the Battle of Kettle Creek, through the climactic, real-life exodus of civilians from Georgia to the mountains of North Carolina, Caylan fights for Jenny’s trust with as much determination as he fights the British. I hope you’ll be swept away by their romance amid the dangers of the Hornet’s Nest. And if you like Scottish characters, stay tuned for book three of the Scouts Series, coming in January and set in 1775 on the border of Georgia and South Carolina.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, November 8

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, November 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 9

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 10

Blossoms and Blessings, November 11

Books You Can Feel Good About, November 11

Simple Harvest Reads, November 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, November 13

Lighthouse Academy Blog, November 13 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

lakesidelivingsite, November 14

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 15

Pause for Tales, November 16

Life on Chickadee Lane, November 16

For Him and My Family, November 17

Cover Lover Book Review, November 18

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 19

To Everything There Is A Season, November 19

Holly’s Book Corner, November 20

Connie’s History Classroom, November 21

Giveaway

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

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/28d33/a-courageous-betrothal-celebration-tour-giveaway

Mojave Man Interview and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Mojave Man

Author: J.W. Gilbert

Genre: Christian Fiction – Action/Adventure

Release Date: November, 2022

Mojave Man continues the adventure of Arcon Franklin as he seeks to escape the authorities demanding his containment. His rescuer, Elaina, flees with him to a survivalist compound that could end up being a trap. As a tenacious reporter edges closer to exposing Arcon, Jesus himself makes his desires known. Whether he likes it or not, Arcon’s foray into the outside world could be cut short. He may have to return to ArcPoint, whether they want him back or not.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

 

About the Author

John Gilbert Wozniak (JW Gilbert) grew up in an Oregon farm town. He retired in 2016 as an international data center cooling expert. Around the turn of the century, he began writing as a hobby. After years of expert guidance and a lot of editing, his ArcPoint trilogy is complete. His intent is to write books that are enjoyed by all ages—biblically accurate—with a touch of adventure, romance, and humor. JW has been married to his best friend Darlene since 1980. They are both retired and enjoy the hobby of creating lapidary jewelry. He is a member of Oregon Christian Writers, Mensa, ALLi, and the Tualatin Valley Gem Club.

More from JW

I became an avid fan of Christian fiction, especially after reading This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti. Working 12-hour night shifts as a data center technician, I had ample time on my hands. At one point I was devouring a book per night, but my favorite genre—action/adventure—was almost non-existent in Christian fiction. So, as is the case with many would-be authors, I decided to write the book I wanted to read. The setting? The future when Jesus is ruling the world, as told in Revelation chapter 20. My protagonist? Arcon, an adventurous young man from an isolated tribe of people. The premise? The people of ArcPoint don’t know that the outside world is safe and that Jesus has returned.

My first attempt at writing went well. I wrote my first draft in three weeks, edited it for six months, and landed a hybrid publisher with the final manuscript. The book garnered four- and five-star reviews, so I was pleased. (Not bad for someone who’d flunked English three times.) I was glad the reviews showed that the writing was good, but my readers were missing the message. I pulled it off the market.

For the past few years I’ve been honing my skills as a writer and reworking my ArcPoint story. There have been a few challenges. While researching, I found over a thousand verses in the Bible that sparked ideas for the time period I was writing about. Now the original book has become a trilogy, plus a prequel. However, traditional Christian publishers were not in the market for adventure stories, so I had to learn about self-publishing. And then, like a page right out of my prequel, the unexpected happened—a pandemic. I decided it would be best to put off publicizing until the entire trilogy was available. Now it is.

To see if the first book was ready to be self-published, I sent copies of Mojave Rift to Reader’s Favorite for professional reviews. It got five stars across the board. Then I entered Mojave Rift in their contest and won a silver medal. All the reviewers seemed to appreciate my inclusion of action, romance, and humor in a squeaky clean, fast-paced, futuristic novel.

I hope my ArcPoint series receives high scores from English teachers, but since I still don’t know a passive voice from a hole in the plot, we’ll see. Writing likable characters and adventure stories that run deep and inspire is something I enjoy. I’ve worked hard and it’s a thrill to get high audience scores.

BTW, did I mention the world-building for the isolated tribe in my story is set in America? Now that was a challenge.

Interview with the Author

  • Which character did you connect to best in this book?

Arcon. Like him I used to swing from trees on a rope, and run across fallen logs. And at times I’ve struggled with doing what I felt God called me to do when others advised me it was wrong.

  • Which part of the book was the most difficult to write?

Big Bear Lake Survivalist Camp. I had to figure out where to put it, how it was built, what people used it previously, who’s running it now, and how all that relates to Arcon and Elaina. Mountains of research for a small number of words in the book.

  • What inspired this book?

Conflict. Those who read Mojave Rift loved it, but thought there needed to be more conflict. In this time period, Jesus is ruling earth, so conflict is limited. But I was able to create a fair amount in Mojave Man, I think.

  • What is your vacation spot?

I’m a lapidary artist, and every year my wife and I get to teach a few dozen people how to find the beauty in God’s creation of rocks. Some are Christians I get to fellowship with, others atheists I share Christ with. It takes place in a remote area in the middle of Oregon with no internet or cell service.

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

The ferns and hellebores lay flattened on the ground, victims of the drought—and an owner too busy to water them. But as the first fall rains drip off their leaves, they’re already rising from the dirt. They’ll soon be standing tall, partially covering the rugged rock wall beyond them, and no longer hiding the chipmunks that claim the area. Soon, the leaves will fall from the big leaf maple trees and reveal the numerous houses that are now hidden from view. For a few more weeks, I’ll enjoy the solitude.

  • If you could have one book or piece of art or music on a deserted island, what would it be and why?

There are two answers to that. The wise choice would be the Bible. It’s large, and has a lot of stories that interest me. Plus, I will probably develop a hunger for the bread of life and living water. The practical answer might be the largest dictionary I could find. I’d read every page one at a time, then rip it out to make a fire.

Blog Stops

Vicky Sluiter, November 9 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 10

By The Book, November 11 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, November 12

Simple Harvest Reads, November 13 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 14

For the Love of Literature, November 15 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, November 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 16

Tell Tale Book Reviews, November 17 (Author Interview)

Blogging With Carol, November 18

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, November 19 (Author Interview)

The Lit Lady, November 20

Artistic Nobody, November 21 (Author Interview)

Exploring the Written Word, November 21

Guild Master, November 22 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, JW is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a print copy of Mojave Man!!

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/28d34/mojave-man-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Restless Wrangler Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: The Restless Wrangler

Author: Karen Baney

Genre: Christian Historical Romance, Christian Western

Release Date: March 8, 2023

A Prodigal Son, Surprise Baby Christian Historical Cowboy Romance. Compelling love story full of heartache and redemption set in Ash Fork, Arizona Territory in 1893-1894.

Preston Colter felt like he was the forgotten son. Years of drinking and drifting finally catch up to him. When a near-death experience recharts the course of his life, he finds himself face-to-face with an old flame. Will he prove he is a new and different man, or will he fall back into his old destructive ways

Years ago, Hetty Clark made one bad choice to follow her attraction to a man she loved which led to the birth of her son out of wedlock. After she inherits her father’s ranch, an older man offers her security for her son’s future if she marries him. When the man from her past shows up on her doorstep, she is faced with a difficult decision. Will she choose a loveless proposal to secure her son’s future? Or will she risk her heart on a man she doesn’t believe has really changed?

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you should know:

The Restless Wrangler by Karen Baney is the fifth book in the Colter Sons series. I read this book as a standalone, however after reading it I am confident that the other books in the series would be worth reading!
What you might need to know:
Preston is an alcoholic, and has made a series of horrible decisions.
Hefty has a son out of Wedlock.
What I think about this book:
At the start of the book I was skeptical about Preston,but I quickly found myself rooting for him. I was so thankful for his “posse” to help him when times got hard. I loved Hetty’s spunk and determination. I also understand her frustration, and appreciate how Baney didn’t just throw Hetty back in a relationship with Preston, and instead showed some of the challenges. This was a wonderful, heart touching story, I will definitely read more by this author.
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

Karen Baney is passionate about writing stories full of flawed characters. She enjoys weaving together stories of second chances, redemption, and overcoming personal trials. As a transplant to Arizona in the late 1990s, she loves researching the state’s history and finding ways to seamlessly incorporate real history and real settings into her novels. In addition to writing and speaking, Karen works as a Software Development Manager for a Christian ministry.

Her faith plays an important role both in her life and in her writing. Karen and her husband, Jim, make their home in Gilbert, Arizona, with their two dogs, Bella and Daisy. Both Jim and Karen are active at Rock Point Church in Queen Creek, Arizona.

 

More from Karen

What was the inspiration behind Preston Colter’s character?

I love a good prodigal story—partly because I was one. I also figured in a family with five boys and one daughter, at least one of them had to have a rebellious streak. Very early in developing the series, I felt like this role would be perfect for a fifth son.

Why did you write the series in the first person?

A few years ago, I read a historical series by Tess Thompson where she wrote the hero and heroine in the first person. I had enjoyed how the point of view felt deeper when written in the first person, so with the Colter Sons Series, I decided to give it a try. Since then, I’ve loved hearing from many readers how much they’ve enjoyed it.

If you’re a little nervous about reading something in the first person, please take advantage of the sample download feature available on most ereaders, including Kindle. The point of view characters are clearly marked at the beginning of the chapter and whenever the point of view changes.

Hetty Clark is a rancher?! What inspired you to choose that profession for her, especially since the book is set in 1893?

One of my favorite research sites for Arizona territorial history is the Sharlot Hall Museum’s online archives and “Days Past” articles. I read several articles about the early days of Prescott, Arizona’s Independence Day Celebrations. These were HUGE events for the town and surrounding communities, which eventually expanded into Cowboy Tournaments (aka Rodeo).

After reading an article about the women winners in the Cowboy Tournament in 1888, I dug deeper into what competitions the women participated in. I was surprised to learn that many of the women worked on ranches right alongside their husbands or brothers.

I enjoy writing strong female characters in unconventional roles, so making Hetty Clark a bronc rider and a ranch manager fit perfectly with the type of woman I pictured for Preston.

Blog Stops

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, November 2 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 3

By The Book, November 4 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, November 5

Tell Tale Book Reviews, November 6 (Author Interview)

lakesidelivingsite, November 7

Sylvan Musings, November 8 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 9

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, November 10 (Author Interview)

Bizwings Book Blog, November 10

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 11

Artistic Nobody, November 12 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, November 12

Simple Harvest Reads, November 13 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Guild Master, November 14 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Karen is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 gift card with signed paperback 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/28b2b/the-restless-wrangler-celebration-tour-giveaway

Christmas at Jekyll Island Club Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Christmas at Jekyl Island Club

Author: Blossom Turner

Genre: Historical Romance

Release Date: October 24, 2023

She was born into privilege yet yearns for freedom. Dare she risk it all for love?

Though spunky Savannah Ensworth was born into wealth and privilege, she longs for the freedom allotted to men. Marriage is the very last thing on her to-do list. As the sole heir to her father’s fortune, she’s in no hurry to turn the freedom that comes with wealth over to a husband.

Bored and restless, she arrives for yet another mind-numbing winter season at the Jekyll Island Millionaire’s Club. There is nothing new under the sun…or so she thinks until she meets Joseph Bennett, the visiting reverend.

As sparks fly, a forbidden attraction grows. But will their very different lives snuff out any hope of a future? And is she ready to give up the freedom she’s always desired for a love that could cost her everything?

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you should know:
Christmas at the Jekyll Island Club a part of The Gilded Age Resorts Series, It is a Christian Historical Fiction. This story takes place in 1906 in Jekyll Island, Georgia. It follows Heiress Savannah Ensworth and Reverend Joseph Bennett.

What I think about this book:
As a Southern woman I am fascinated by how the rich elitists turned our coastal islands into their playground for the winter months.  Jekyll Island created the perfect backdrop for this story. Savannah has lived a life of privilege , but is not fulfilled. Her arrival on the Island only magnifies her discontent.  I love how the author allowed Joseph to step into her life at a time that she was receptive and searching. Their friendship was sweet, but interesting to watch as both struggled. Blossom Turner has written a heart tugging and thought provoking  story that left me wanting more.  I can’t wait to see what Turner writes next.

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

Blossom Turner Blossom Turner is an award-winning romance author and a hopeless romantic at heart. She believes all story should give the reader significant entertainment value but also relatable life struggles with hope sprinkled throughout. Her desire is to leave the reader with a yearning to live for Christ on a deeper level, or at the very least, create a hunger to seek for more.

She lives in a four-season playground in beautiful British Columbia, Canada, with gardening at the top of her enjoyment list. She has a passion for women’s ministry but having coffee and sharing God’s hope with a hurting soul trump all. She has two grown children and lives with her
husband, David, of forty years and their Shepherd/Bernese cross, Lacey. Blossom loves to hear from her readers. Visit her at https://blossomturner.com (Link to website.)

 

 

More from Blossom

An island owned by millionaires…do you want to visit?

From my first glimpse of the Marshes of Glynn to that step out of my car onto soil that used to be trod by the world’s wealthiest, my interest was piqued. A book series blossomed inside my head. The 2,906 mile trek from my home in Kelowna, BC to Jekyll Island, Georgia, was worth every hard-earned penny.

The history of Jekyll Island is fascinating from the indigenous people to the arrival of Spanish explorers in 1510 who named the Island, Isla De Ballenas (Whale Island), onward to the English occupation during the Colonial Era in 1733 (where it was renamed Jekyll Island) through the plantation Era. But it really gets interesting during the Club Era where fifty-three members purchased shares with the goal to market the island as a winter retreat for the extremely wealthy. It was a raging success. The clubhouse was officially opened in January of 1888 and the island became an exclusive club to many of the world’s wealthiest families. One could visit by invitation only. This “Millionaires’ Hideaway” became the place some of the most powerful American financiers could relax in prestigious undisturbed isolation. During its peak, the claim was made that its’ members controlled one-sixth of the world’s wealth.

This story takes place in the midst of the Club Era which lasted from 1888 to 1942 before the island was sold back to the state of Georgia. The island, the Club House, the mansion-like cottages, including the flora and fauna have been meticulously researched to bring authenticity to this story. I hope I have done a good job of setting you in that place and time, so you can visualize, hear, smell, and be touched by the lives of the people that long ago walked upon that soil.

Today, there is a causeway built through the beautiful Marshes of Glynn so visitors can access the Island from the mainland by car. It is a popular tourist destination. I would highly recommend a trip to this Golden Isles barrier island.

The historical district has been painstakingly restored and the Club House stands in all its original glory. From the variety of beaches to a photographer’s heaven on Driftwood beach, to the miles of bike trails, salt marshes and abundant wildlife this island is deemed one of the 50 most beautiful small towns in America. I could see why when I visited.

If you have not yet had the pleasure, I hope you will someday have the opportunity to step upon the soil where millionaires trod and bask in the same sunshine they did. Perhaps have high tea in the Club House or ride a bicycle on the hard packed shores of the very beaches they enjoyed. For we are all God’s beautiful creations. He sees not our money, our status, or our family connections…He sees our heart.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, November 1

Splashes of Joy, November 1

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 2

lakesidelivingsite, November 3

Exploring the Written Word, November 3

Lighthouse Academy Blog, November 4 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 5

Blossoms and Blessings, November 5

Blogging With Carol, November 6

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 7

Pause for Tales, November 7

Book Looks by Lisa, November 8

Cover Lover Book Review, November 9

Connie’s History Classroom, November 9

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

For Him and My Family, November 11

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, November 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 12

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, November 13 (Author Interview)

Holly’s Book Corner, November 13

She Lives To Read, November 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Blossom 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/28b2a/a-christmas-at-jekyl-island-club-celebration-tour-giveaway

Snowbound Escape Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Snowbound Escape

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre: Christian Fiction

Release Date: October 24, 2023

To rescue a witness…

this K-9 team must face a killer and a storm.

After months tracking a colleague falsely accused of a double homicide, officer Tanner Ford and his K-9 partner finally locate crime tech Mara Gilmore—but the real murderer is closing in. Now they must run into a frozen wilderness to survive. Evading the killer is the only way for Mara to clear her name. But will the harsh winter conditions cover their tracks…or bury them forever?

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna

What I think you should know:
Snowbound Escape by Dana Mentink is a Love Inspired Romantic Suspense.  The eighth book in the Pacific Northwest K-9 Unit Series, however it can be read as a standalone.  This book is about K-9 Handler Tanner and his dog Britta

What you might need to know:
Mara was accused of murder and has been on the run from the real killer for seven months.
Tanner lost his fiancée to cancer.

What I think about this book:
Buckle up for a fast paced suspense, in true Mentink fashion there is not a slow moment in this book. From the first page we learn of the struggles that Mara has had while trying to evade a killer. She is such a strong character, but has come to see that she can’t stay safe and clear her name alone. Tanner has closed his heart after his loss, but Mara and her strength are able to chip away at the wall he has built. Britta was fascinating as a tracking dog as a boxer is not a traditional tracking breed. I loved this book and can’t wait to see what adventure Dana takes us on in her next book.

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

About the Author

Dana Mentink is a USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author as well as a two-time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, and the recipient of a Holt Medallion. She’s written over fifty titles in the suspense, lighthearted romance and mystery genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense and Poisoned Pen Press. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

 

 

 

More from Dana

What a challenge to write the eighth book in this fabulous Pacific Northwest K-9 Unit series! Writing a continuity (linked books with an overarching mystery) with seven other authors requires us to work closely together which is a rare blessing in this solitary business. There were so many good conversations, emails and texts that went into the construction of this series. Since wilderness escape novels are my favorite, it was great fun to write Tanner, Mara and Boxer Britta’s dramatic survival story. I hope you enjoy the book and the entire series as much as we enjoyed putting it together for you!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 31

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 31

The Avid Reader, November 1

Pause for Tales, November 1

Paula’s Pad of Inspiration, November 1

Texas Book-aholic, November 2

Life on Chickadee Lane, November 2

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, November 3

Devoted to Hope, November 3

Bizwings Book Blog, November 3

She Lives to Read, November 4

Vicky Sluiter, November 4

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 5

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 5

Betti Mace, November 6

Pens Pages & Pulses, November 6

A Good Bok and Cup of Tea, November 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 7

Blogging With Carol, November 7

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 8

Simple Harvest Reads, November 8 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, November 9

EmpowerMoms, November 9

Wishful Endings, November 10

Blossoms and Blessings, November 10

Bigreadersite, November 11

Labor Not in Vain, November 11

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, November 12 (Author Interview)

Raining Butterfly Kisses, November 12

Lily’s Book Reviews, November 13

Holly’s Book Corner, November 13

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dana 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/28b29/snowbound-escape-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Mermaid’s Tale Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: The Mermaid’s Tale

Author: L. E. Richmond

Genre: YA Fantasy Retelling

Release Date: October 10, 2023

A Tail Could Tell a Tale

Locklyn Adair has never fit in. The legs she inherited as a result of her great-great-grandmother’s curse make it impossible for her to belong under the sea. When her niece is also born without a tail, Locklyn is determined to save her from similar rejection by sending her to the only place in the Undersea Realm where legs are acceptable – the Lost Island of Atlantis.

Darin Aalto would do anything to protect his family, even spearheading an impossible quest to find treasure that has been lost for over a hundred years. But when his best friend, Locklyn, joins his crew, his ability to keep her safe—and his shot at winning her heart—comes perilously close to being swept away.

A family curse, lost treasure, unrequited love, and a race against time intertwine as Locklyn and Darin seek to save their family, their kingdom, and eventually the entire Undersea Realm without losing each other.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy

It’s an imaginative and fascinating fairy tale that is like a spin-off of The Little Mermaid. Locklyn’s first person voice was easy to love despite being an outcast and so brutally despised by many. Her selfless heart was endearing and I was cheering for her the whole entire story. I didn’t unfortunately love the angst of unspoken and unrealized romantic love nor the brewing of a love triangle. Darin’s perspective was in third person but it almost had an omniscient, dreamlike quality of someone else telling us what he was doing – this confused me at first and I had a bit of difficult time following his chapters. However, the cliff-hanger ending finally made me realize why his chapters needed to be written in this manner. I loved Darin’s loyal, compassionate, and brave heart and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

There is plenty of adventure and adrenaline, fantastical sea monsters and enemies, folklore and magic, and some spiritual thread in this incredible underwater world the author has created in full color and detail. You will literally be swept away as Locklyn and Darin dare to risk all for their loved ones.

I received a complimentary copy courtesy of Enclave Publishing via Celebrate Lit Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive comment. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

L.E. Richmond was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest by an American composition teacher and a German bookseller. Her childhood consisted in a large part of imagining stories for her Playmobil characters and checking out as many books from the library as her family could fit on six library cards. Now she spends her time chasing two blonde baby boys, reading aloud to the hazel-eyed young man who has her heart, and attempting to transfer the stories in her head into words for others. Her passion is for words and stories that thrill the soul and she is continually amazed by the One who crafted the most epic story of all time.

 

 

More from L.E.

I am a discovery writer, so when I first started The Mermaid’s Tale, I knew only the general plot and that the romance would be between the main character and the older brother of her brother-in-law.

The catalyst for this choice came from a novel published in England in 1815.

Darin Aalto, famous treasure hunting Merman from the Mediterranean, was inspired by none other than Mr. Knightley from Shropshire. He, like Jane Austen’s hero, is kind, experienced, confident, and attentive to the needs of others. On the other hand, my heroine, Locklyn Adair, is not much like Emma Wodehouse, struggling with a lack of confidence rather than the overabundance which plagues the young mistress of Hartfield.

Even though Locklyn differs greatly from Emma in temperament, she shares one marked similarity with her – a deep devotion to her sister’s children. In fact, it is to save her niece from the rejection which legs bring to Mermaids that leads Locklyn to encourage Darin to claim a disputed treasure which in turn leads to hostility from the warrior queen of a neighboring kingdom which leads to a duel to the death which leads to . . . You’ll have to read the book to find out.

Blog Stops

Becca Hope: Book Obsessed, October 19

Madi’s Musings, October 19

By the Book, October 20

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 21

Denise L. Barela, October 21

Texas Book-aholic, October 22

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 23

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 24

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 25

Inklings and Notions, October 26

Life, Love, Writing, October 27

Blogging With Carol, October 27

Tell Tale Book Reviews, October 28

Labor Not in Vain, October 29

Holly’s Book Corner, October 30

Simple Harvest Reads, October 31 (Guest Review from Mindy)

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, November 1 (Author Interview)

Of Blades and Thorns, November 1

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, L.E. is giving away the grand prize package of hardcover copy of The Mermaid’s Tale and a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/28799/the-mermaid-s-tale-celebration-tour-giveaway