Christmas Stalkings & New Year’s Revolutions Review and Giveaway

Stalkings n Revolutions Duo (1)

About the Book

Book: Christmas Stalkings & New Year’s Revolutions

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Fiction / Christian / Romance / Holiday

Release Date: January 29, 2017 and December 31, 2016

Christmas STalkings-smChristmas Stalkings

If her life had to transform into a TV movie, couldn’t it have been a sweet romance instead of a creepy suspense?

Wendy Nabity has redefined “crazy cat lady,” and she’s just fine with that. She’s got a tree and a stocking for reach of them, too.

All that festivity turns ominous when things begin turning up in odd places—places her fur babies couldn’t move them. The local police? They think she’s as crazy as the fleas jumping from cat to cat—or something like that.

Her neighbors aren’t much help. The nice one won’t come near her, despite his obvious interest, and the other hates her enough to torment her every chance he can. Seriously, if Neal Kirkpatrick makes one more rude demand of her, she might just start dumping the litter box on his front porch!

However, when a threatening note appears in one of the stockings, even Fairbury’s police officers have to admit no cat could have written it, and one officer takes it upon himself to do something.

Who knew Christmastime could feel so sinister?

____________________________________

New Year’s Revolutions

Abstract holiday background, beautiful shiny Christmas lights, glowing magic bokeh.

His life is spinning out of control, and his heart isn’t far behind!

Neal Kirkpatrick: project manager, staunch atheist, and town grump. Aside from an apparent soft spot for a neighborhood boy, the man has nothing to recommend him.

So when he overhears criticism from a neighbor he secretly respects, Neal decides maybe it’s time for professional help. With the same straightforward tenacity he uses in his job, Neal goes on a hunt for a therapist to help him unravel the mystery of himself.

His therapist says he’s in love, but Neal Kirkpatrick does not do relationships.

Does he?

Is any woman worth changing his entire life for?

Is He worth it?

You met him in Christmas Stalkings. Now it’s time to get to know him.

Discover what happens when the town curmudgeon steps out of his comfort zone and into a psychologist’s office to learn what’s up with his heart.

 

Click here to get your copy of Christmas Stalkings!

Click here to get your copy of New Year's Revolutions!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
Christmas Stalkings by Chautona Havig is a Christian Holiday Mystery/ Suspense . It can be read as a standalone or prior to reading New Year’s Revolutions. It is set in Havig’s Rockland Universe and give you peeps into other characters from there.

What you might need to know:
Wendy has someone stalking her and their behavior eventually escalates to real danger. Wendy lost her daughter prior to this book.

What I think about this book:
A “crazy” Lady with seven reindeer…. I mean cats. While this book had some serious themes it was also very entertaining. I found Wendy and her cats to be charming and sad at the same time. The situation that Wendy found herself in was infuriating, I hate that it took such lengths for her to convince the police that things were being disturbed in her home. The neighbors were also very intriguing, Peter was very mystifying and Neal was plain infatuating. The story was a unique Christmas read that I enjoyed reading. I followed this book with New Year’s Revolutions, Neal’s perspective of the story.

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

What I think you should know:
New Years Revolutions By Chautona Havig  is a Christian Mystery/ Suspense/ Romance. It starts on the same timeline as Christmas Stalkings and unless you read the first chapters as you read Christmas Stalkings it would be best to read after you read it.  This book is set in Rockland’s universe.

What I think you should know:
Neal is very intelligent, but socially awkward to the point that his therapist bounces back and forth on a Asperger’s diagnosis. The story also includes some glimpses into Neal’s life in which he prefers sex without attachments, I think that this could have been left out or communicated in another way.

What I think about this book:
This book was not as light of a read as Christmas Stalkings. Neal was a very hard character; he infuriated me as well as broke my heart. He grew up with his parents having a dysfunctional relationship and well as his own “issues”. It was hard to see him come to terms with the fact that he has “feelings”. Havig wrote a unique book showing how an atheist might come to terms with faith.

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

media-headshot-smChautona 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

Sometimes, You Just Can’t Let a Character Go

I met him in my book, A Bird Died. Neal Kirkpatrick. Grumpy, snappish, the man just seemed to look for something to grouse about. Except when it comes to a little boy in the town, and then a soft side came out that no one expected.

A few years later, I got the idea for a Christmas comedic suspense “noella” (Christmas novella), and the minute I knew what I wanted to write, I knew I’d be writing about him, too. He’d be the main character’s neighbor and always on her case about something. Instant conflict and subplot. Oh, yeah!

Something unexpected happened as I wrote the story, though. I fell in love with the cranky guy and didn’t want to let him go. Did I have time to write a book for New Year’s, too? I mean, how cool would that be? After much deliberation, I decided to go for it.

I’m kind of glad I didn’t know what kind of Christmas our family would have that year or I would never have decided to do it, and I doubt Neal’s story would still be languishing in the slush-pile of my mind (for the story of our family’s Christmas that year, you might want to check out Sand & Mistletoe).

That story turned into something unexpected.

First, there was more to his story than I’d ever imagined. A dysfunctional family, a past that he didn’t even choose himself, and a rather immoral life I wouldn’t usually care to consider. But reality made me admit that a man with no concern for what the Lord says about things wouldn’t necessarily live the kind of life I think people should! Don’t worry, I didn’t do deep into those kinds of details! My prudish streak got pushed, but not pushed aside.

More than just “his side of the story,” New Year’s Revolutions tells the story of a man who sees himself through the lens of someone he respects and goes on a journey to see why he is as he is and if there is something inherently wrong with it or if the trouble lies with others (as he suspects).

Both a personal and a spiritual journey ensued that made me dig deep into Scripture to discover what it had to say about Jesus, relationships, and honesty. Neal’s discovery of what the Word says about things drove me to study and restudy things that I believed. We didn’t always come to the same conclusions, but it was interesting and I learned more than I would have expected to.

I hope you love Neal as much as I do. I know one thing for sure… this isn’t the last we’ll see of him.

Blog Stops

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

For Him and My Family, December 15

Get Cozy Book Nook, December 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 16

Captive Dreams Window, December 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 17

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 18

Holly Jo Morris, December 18

Inklings and notions, December 19

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 20

Mary Hake, December 20

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 21

deb’s Book Review, December 22

Blogging With Carol, December 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 23

CarpeDiem, December 24

Godly Book Reviews, December 25

Artistic Nobody, December 26 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Simple Harvest Reads, December 26 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Texas Book-aholic, December 27

Batya’s Bits, December 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a paperback copy of each book, Christmas Stalkings & New Year’s Revolutions!!

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/104a9/christmas-stalkings-new-year-s-revolutions-celebration-tour-giveaway

Stories and Songs of Faith Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Stories and Songs of Faith

Author: Alexis Goring

Genre: Christian Devotional

Release Date: April 25, 2020

Stories and Songs of Faith: My Journey with God is a 52-week devotional that will bless your heart, soothe your soul, encourage your mind, and strengthen your God-given spirit.

Join author Alexis A. Goring on an inspirational journey. Each devotional builds from real-life experiences that impart many faith lessons learned along the way.

Each day is built on the foundation of a Bible verse or edifying quote, followed by Goring’s personal story and reflection questions for a personalized experience.

All of the devotionals are tied to a song in order to go a little deeper into the heart of the message. A song directory at the end of the book connects the reader with music online to further enhance the study experience and glorify God.

Spend a year on a journey growing closer to the Lord through Stories and Songs of Faith, and discover personal transformation as time with Jesus Christ changes your heart to look a little more like His.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What you might need to know:
Stories and Songs of Faith: My Journey with God by Alexis Goring is a 52 week Christian Devotional.  Each of the Devotionals contains a devotional, scripture and a song that connects to the devotional. There are also reflection questions at the end of every devotional.

What I think about the devotional:
I really enjoyed this devotional. I found the links to the songs at the back of the devotional particularly helpful. I really connect to worship thru music so I was thrilled with how Goring connected each devotional with a song.  The devotionals were thoughtful, meaningful and easy to understand. I love the variety of songs that she included in the devotionals.  This would be a great devotional to do alone or with a friend. I would recommend this devotional to any of my friends.

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

Alexis A. Goring is a passionate writer with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She loves the art of storytelling and hopes that her stories will connect readers the enduring, forever love of Jesus Christ.

 

More from Alexis

Stories and Songs of Faith: My Journey with God was published in April 2020.

 

However, the idea for this devotional wasn’t a thought in my head until around the beginning of last year. It’s interesting because though I have been writing devotions since recovering from a health crisis at age 16, and have had my devotionals published in books, on blogs and on websites since then, I never thought of putting together a book filled with my original devotions until January 2019.

 

It’s amazing how God works! Because at the time that God inspired this project, I was actually still trying to recover from writer’s block and work on another fiction book which I planned to have published before the end of that year. But God had other plans.

 

And His plans were (and always are) perfect!

 

God put this devotional on my heart and I went to it! First, I gathered all of the devotions that I’d written over the years that were published on other blogs. Since they didn’t pay me to publish my work, I still had the rights to each one. So that meant I now had about 25 percent of the content for my book! Next, I reached out to the women’s devotional book editorial team who had published several of my devotions over the span of about 14 years. I planned to ask permission to re-publish those devotions that I wrote, this time in my own devotional. But later, I decided that it would be a better idea to simply write new material for my book. And so I did! But it wasn’t easy.

 

At first, I was barely writing more than one devotion every two or three weeks. It was then that I realized that as a trained journalist, I thrive on deadlines (never missed one). So I decided that it would help motivate me to write consistently if I gave myself a deadline for each new devotion. Around that time, I had been writing a few times a month for a friend’s blog called Whispers in Purple. I decided to sign up to write a new devotion for her blog every week until I was done putting my devotional together. So I booked myself for one of my new devotions to be published every Friday from around February 2019 through Summer 2019.

 

By Summer 2019, I had a total of 44 devotions and thought I was done. However, God knew I was not and He let me know that through two professionals in the publishing industry. The first was a popular book editor who told me, “You know, Alexis, if you wrote 52 devotions then it could be a weekly devotional because there are 52 weeks in a year.” I gave her a nod but wasn’t convinced that was the best idea for me as the author. Not soon after, a literary agent gave me the final push by simply saying, “You need to keep going.” And so I, reluctantly then but gratefully now, did keep writing more devotions. I booked myself to be a guest on Whispers in Purple blog every Friday through the rest of that year and then finally by the end of February 2020 (the next year), I wrote devotional number 52. I was so relieved to be done writing my book!

 

Not only does God have perfect timing; He positions you perfectly for success! Long story short: My publisher had hired a new editor who has decades of professional experience in editing devotionals and she (Patty) was the editor who my publisher assigned to me! Patty had a wonderful idea that really shaped my book by giving it the perfect title and bonus idea. The title of my devotional, as you can see, is about my real-life stories and faith-based songs that guided me on my journey with God. And the fun bonus idea was to have links to the songs that I mentioned in each devotion. These links were made available for the reader in a song directory at the end of my devotional in both the print and e-book versions. Even better, the link is live if you are using a Kindle to read my book meaning that the reader can just click on the hyperlink and hear the song via YouTube while using their Kindle app or Kindle device, without having to look it up first online. Patty said that there’s really not another book on the market yet with this kind of idea and format. She told me that it may help a lot of people, especially music lovers. As a music lover myself, I loved this idea!

 

But God wasn’t done directing my steps (praise the Lord!): He allowed 20 professionals from a variety of backgrounds and life experiences to agree to read an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of my book and write an endorsement. We’re talking actresses, journalists, pastors, doctors, teachers, authors, bloggers, singers and a Christian radio show host … a wonderful variety of people who were all behind my book!

 

The final part of this amazing experience that brings joy to my heart is the fact that this is the first book I wrote where all of the first few reviews were each 5-stars on Amazon.com! That has never happened to me before (I have three other books published though they are all fiction stories but this devotional is my first nonfiction work).

 

Several of the people who have endorsed and/or reviewed my book have said that it was timely and needed for such a time as this (the Coronavirus pandemic, intense politics, increased racial tensions, and everything else that’s been hitting us hard this year on and off the news). Only God can do that so I give all the glory to Him!

 

In closing, I’d like to share words from my friend Morgan’s endorsement.

 

She said: “God has profoundly touched my life through Alexis A. Goring’s uplifting and personable weekly devotional book sharing God’s love through her own experiences and insights. It is so well-written and in a voice that feels as if a close friend is having coffee with you and talking of God. Every entry is backed by Scripture, as well as highlights meaningful songs that God has used to touch the author’s heart. As a fellow journalist, I love how the author uses her talent of observation to see God at work all around her as well as the use of thought-provoking questions at each devotional’s end to further connect our lives to that entry’s theme and the Scripture truth it has been based on. If you are looking for a devotional that is short but powerful, this is it. It would be a perfect gift for a special person in your life.”

 

Morgan’s words about how reading my devotional made her feel like she was having coffee with a close friend and talking about God is how I want every person who reads my book to feel. And if you don’t like coffee then we can have tea or ice water! At the end of the day, I hope and pray that God uses my devotional to touch your heart and bring you closer to Him.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 11

Spoken from the Heart, December 11

Texas Book-aholic, December 12

Inklings and notions, December 13

Mary Hake, December 13

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 14

Splashes of Joy, December 15

Kathleen Neely, December 15

For Him and My Family, December 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 17

Captive Dreams Window, December 17

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 18

Get Cozy Book Nook, December 18

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 19

Happily Managing a Household of Boys , December 20

deb’s Book Review, December 20

Artistic Nobody, December 21 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 22

Simple Harvest Reads, December 22 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 23

Godly Book Reviews, December 24

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Alexis is giving away the grand prize package of a $10 Starbucks gift card, an eBook copy of “Hope in My Heart: A Collection of Heartwarming Stories”, and a signed copy of Alexis’ devotional 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/104a6/stories-and-songs-of-faith-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Crown and the Axe Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: The Crown and the Axe

Author: Darcy Fornier

Genre: YA Christian Medieval Adventure

Release Date: September 12, 2019

A careless mistake. A tale from the past. A journey he’ll never forget.
Seventeen-year-old Dierk Lichtensitz, Crown Prince of Sunland, excels in both his physical and educational training. Not that his father is impressed, but Dierk quit trying to please him years ago.
King Phillip Lichtensitz holds high standards for his children—with good reason. So when selfish neglect on Dierk’s part leaves another squire injured, Phillip delivers strict punishment. Dierk must travel the country as a woodcutter’s son.
Resentful of his father’s decision, Dierk resolves to endure his punishment unmoved—until the tales of a long-dead witch’s power force him to reckon with himself and his God.
As the journey leads him into more danger than his father could have ever foreseen, how much will Dierk have to surrender to become the man he needs—and desperately wants—to be?
Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:

The Crown and the Axe by Darcy Fornier is a Young Adult/ Christian Medieval Adventure It is the first book in The Prince of Sunland Series. The story is a spin on Sleeping Beauty, however instead of Magic it contains spiritual forces. The story is told mostly from the perspective of Dierk, son of Prince Phillip.

 

What you might need to know:

This book deals with spiritual warfare and demons.  Due to the spiritual warfare and demonic presence I would hesitate to recommend this to younger YA readers and would preread the book and look at the maturity level of the reader before allowing them to read it.

 

What I think about this book:

This hands down my favorite Young Adult book of the year.  Not only was it entertaining, but contained sound spiritual lessons.  Dierk, the Crown Prince, had been raised knowing that he would someday be King and was used to the privileges that were afforded  him because of this. When they could no longer ignore his behavior they sent him on a journey that they hoped would change him into a man worthy to be King. I loved watching the journey unfold and watching Kik learn to deal with the real world. The story was captivating and poignant . I loved Gertrude and the Sisters, in particular when Gertrude told Kik  “ Can’t you see God took care of us? He doesn’t prevent all hardship, then people might serve Him only for what He would do for him.” Such a powerful message for Young Adults and Adults alike. I look forward to reading more from Fornier.

 

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

Darcy Fornier (pronounced forn-yay) believes the best stories provide clean, compelling entertainment while also provoking the reader to think about life in a new way. She’s been spinning stories ever since she learned how to play “pretend,” and she has seriously pursued writing since 2013. When she isn’t writing, editing, or dreaming up a story, you might find her washing dishes, “dissolved” in a book, playing the piano, hiking in the woods, singing at the top of her lungs, or talking up a storm with her sisters. At six years old, she gave her heart to Jesus, and she lives to know Him more. She makes her home with her parents and two younger sisters, wherever that happens to be.

 

More from Darcy

The first spark of inspiration for this story was Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. Don’t judge yet, okay? 😉

 

I hadn’t yet seen the film, actually, just read a storybook at least three years before I even thought about taking pencil to paper myself.

 

The princess and the sleeping spell fascinated me far less that the prince’s capture by, and subsequent battle with Maleficent. Maybe that’s why the prince is the only character who has the same name in my story.

 

I got to thinking, “What would the story be like without magic?” So there went the sleeping spell. 😉

 

And then I got to wondering, “What happened to the prince and princess after the story ended? Who would their children be? How would those children be affected by their parents’ dramatic past?”

 

That’s when Dierk Lichtensitz, Crown Prince of Sunland, introduced himself.

 

The story is mostly his. But because all of are shaped by those before us, it is also his father’s story. I had fun telling both.

 

The characters walk through several dark places. Life offers us many painful challenges, after all. But they also get to laugh because life offers us moments of joy.

 

And it is a story of victory. Because in Jesus, there is nothing over which we can’t triumph.

 

P.S. If you have any clean or inspirational Sleeping Beauty retellings to recommend, I’m all ears. Pay no attention to my To-Be-Read pile’s protests in the background. 😉

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 15

Texas Book-aholic, December 16

Inklings and notions, December 17

For Him and My Family, December 18

Simple Harvest Reads, December 19 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

deb’s Book Review, December 19

Rebecca Tews, December 20

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, December 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 22

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

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 24

Blogging With Carol, December 25

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 26

Mary Hake, December 26

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 27

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 28

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Darcy is giving away the grand prize package of $15 Amazon gift card and a copy of one of Darcy’s favorite books, Sir Knight of the Splendid Way!!

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/104b0/the-crown-and-the-axe-celebration-tour-giveaway

Bride by Blackmail Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Bride by Blackmail

Author: Debbie Lynne Costello

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: September 15, 2020

A broken heart, a controlling father, and an intrusive Scot leave Charlotte Jackson reeling. Accused of stealing an heirloom pin, she must choose between an unwanted marriage and the ruin of her family name. With the futures of her three younger sisters at stake, as well as her own reputation, Charlotte must navigate through injustice to find forgiveness and true happiness.

Eager to find the traitor that caused the death of his brother, Duncan Mackenzie comes to America and attempts to fit in with Charleston society. But when the headstrong Charlotte catches his eye, Duncan takes on a second mission—acquiring the lass’s hand. After being spurned several times, he uses unconventional ways of winning her heart.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
Bride by Blackmail by Debbie Lynn Costello is a historical Christian fiction. It is set in Charleston, South Carolina in 1880. The story is about Charlotte Jackson, a daughter of Charleston and Duncan Mackenize ,a Scottish man who is on a mission for The Crown.

What I think about this book:
Being a South Carolina native I cherish all things Low Country, but because of this I am  critical without meaning to be. I approach each story with hope and anticipation, with this one I was not disappointed. Costello did a wonderful job, I enjoyed the characters and the story. Duncan was a man who was used to his money and his charm getting him what he wanted, Charlotte was a determined woman who was not going to fall for his charms. The two of them definitely made for  interesting interaction, add in the danger and mystery from Duncan’s mission and it was a wonderful story.

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

Debbie Lynne Costello has been writing since the young age of eight. She went to college for journalism. She enjoys medieval settings and settings set in nineteenth century Charleston, South Carolina. She loves the Lord and hopes to touch people’s lives through her stories. Debbie Lynne lives in the beautiful state of South Carolina with her husband of 40 years, their 4 children, 2 Tennessee Walking horses, 2 Arabians, miniature donkey, 6 ducks, and 3 dogs.

 

More from Debbie

It is fun to build characters in books and one of the best ways is to show some sort of a hobby or skill that the particular character enjoys. In Bride by Blackmail, Charlotte and her sister, Nellie, are doing needlework on a tablecloth that they hope to have done by the holiday season. My grandmother who would be over a hundred today loved to do needlework. I have pieces from when she was young up until her later years when she did needlework on pillowcases to decorate them up as a Christmas present. But I also have pieces done by my great-great grandmother and her sisters. They are cherished pieces I hope to hand down for generations. As part of my giveaway I’ve purchased antique needlework and embroidered pieces to giveaway with the prizes.

Another fun way to build characters is show something they love to eat. Nellie, who is a minor character, is visiting the hero’s home with her family. Duncan being from Scotland has scones on the breakfast menu. Nellie can’t get enough of the yummy biscuits and finds the servant enjoys helping her continue her indulgence even after she leaves.

 

SCONES

 

Preheat oven to 400

 

2 cups of flour

1/3 cup sugar

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp baking soda

½ tsp baking powder

½ cup sour cream

½ cup butter (hard)

½ cup cranberries

1 large egg

2 tsp. sugar (do not put this in with the dry ingredients. This is for topping.)

 

Mix together dry ingredients in large bowl. Once mixed well, cut hard butter into pats and drop into the bowl. Now cut the butter into the floured mixture until it is more like a crumble. Set aside.

 

In a small bowl, whisk together your egg and your sour cream until well mixed.

 

With a fork (no mixer!) blend the liquid mixture into the flour mixture, keep stirring until the mixture becomes one large ball. If you need to you can use your hands toward the end to make sure all the flour is in the ball.

 

On a lightly floured surface pat the dough out to about 3/4” thick. I try to make mine a rectangle for the next step. Once you have the thickness right, sprinkle with the remaining 2 tsps. sugar. Cut the dough into triangles and place on cookie sheet (you can use parchment paper on the cookie sheet). Be sure to place adequately apart on the sheet to prevent them touching when rising.

Bake approximately 15 minutes or until they are a beautiful golden color.

Allow to cool slightly. These are wonderful warm or cold!

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 14

Hallie Reads, December 14

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 15

Novels Corner, December 15

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 16

Connect in Fiction, December 16

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 17

Artistic Nobody, December 18 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Britt Reads Fiction, December 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 19

Simple Harvest Reads, December 19 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Rebecca Tews, December 20

deb’s Book Review, December 20

Inklings and notions, December 21

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 21

Texas Book-aholic, December 22

Splashes of Joy, December 22

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 23

Vicky Sluiter, December 23

Labor Not in Vain, December 24

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, December 25

Connie’s History Classroom, December 26

Bizwings Blog, December 26

For Him and My Family, December 27

Maureen’s Musings, December 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Debbie is giving away the grand prize of a a smart watch!!

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/104ae/bride-by-blackmail-celebration-tour-giveaway

Something Borrowed Review and Giveaway

Something Borrowed banner

About the Book

Book: Something Borrowed

Author: Weaver, Dawn, Boyd, Tysinger, Shiloh

Genre: Christian/Contemporary/ Romance / Holiday

Release Date: October 20

Something Borrowed Cover FINAL 6x9Old friends, new loves, and a borrowed tiara.

Always Been Yours — Hanady’s planning her dream wedding, but her injured best friend Keenan isn’t the groom. If she can’t see she’s marrying the wrong guy soon, his leg won’t be the only thing broken.

All the Moore — Leilah Anderson has been living behind the screen to hide her disability, then she meets Reggie Moore face-to-face. Can their relationship survive the truth and distance between them?

A Holly, Bolly Christmas — A dream wedding venue at Christmas? Sign Chahna Kapoor up. Even if her fiancé doesn’t know it…

Somehow, This Christmas — When not-so-merry mishaps threaten wedding planner Cate Forsyth’s holiday wedding and reputation, will her own happily ever after with sweetheart Noah Bennett melt away?

A Promise So Sweet — Lydia Osborn hasn’t heard from her ex in ten years, so imagine her surprise when he shows up proposing marriage. Tis the season for love?

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
Something Borrowed is a compilation of contemporary Christian Romance novellas.  It contains the following novellas : Always Been Yours  by Jaycee Weaver, All the Moore by Toni Shiloh, A Holly, Bolly Christmas  by Mikal Dawn, Somehow, This Christmas by Teresa Tysinger and A Promise So Sweet  by Andrea Boyd.

What I think about this collection:
This was such a delightful Christmas collection. I love the idea of strong friendships that stand the test of time and distance, in a society that often portrays women as tearing each other down. I enjoy reading about women who maintain friendships and build each other up.  Each story was unique and entertaining and filled me with Christmas joy.  I cheered  and cringed with the characters as they navigated their challenges on the way to wearing something borrowed.  I love how each author gave us a strong woman, even if she did not know it at the start of the story. I could not choose a favorite bride as each story was delightful to read. While each story ends at Christmas  I would enjoy reading this book any time of year!

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

JayceeWeaver_HeadShotJaycee Weaver Author
Lover of Jesus, family, books, coffee, music, and crafting (in that order), Jaycee Weaver is perpetually pursuing at least one of her passions. She writes contemporary Christian romance with realistic characters in everyday situations where they always find a happy ending. Visit her at www.jayceeweaver.com.

toniToni Shiloh Author
Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and Christian fiction writer. Once she understood the powerful saving grace thanks to the love of Christ, she was moved to honor her Savior. She writes to bring Him glory and to learn more about His goodness. Visit her at www.tonishiloh.com.

MikalDawn_HeadShotMikal Dawn Author
Mikal Dawn is an inspirational romance author, wedding enthusiast, and military (retired) wife. When she isn’t writing about faith, fun, and forever, she is obsessively scouring Pinterest (with coffee in hand!) for wedding ideas for her characters.

Mikal lives in Oklahoma with her husband and two of their three children. Visit her at www.mikaldawn.com.

TeresaTysinger_HeadShotTeresa Tysinger Author
Teresa Tysinger is a wife, mother, and communications director for a national non-profit. She writes charming Christian romance, inspired by grace. Teresa now resides in Texas, though part of her heart remains in North Carolina. She loves Jesus, coffee, and happy endings. Visit Teresa at www.teresatysinger.com.

AndreaBoyd_HeadShotAndrea Boyd Author
Each of Andrea Boyd’s series represents a different genre but all fall into the category of romance. All offer an element of her own brand of humor. And all are a tribute to God. Besides writing, she loves spending time with her family, quilting, going to car shows, and driving around in her 1968 Barracuda convertible. Andrea lives with her husband, Tommy, and at least a couple of cats in York County, SC. Visit her at www.andreaboyd11.com.

More from the Something Borrowed Authors

Dear Readers,

Thank you for stopping by the Celebrate Lit blog tour of Something Borrowed. Before we share our excitement for the collection, we’d like to give a brief history of how it came to be.

Last year, the five of us crafted the Once Upon a Christmas collection, but Teresa needed to step down and we were blessed to have Angela Ruth Strong join us in her stead. Early this year, we rejoiced as Teresa was able to resume her place, and then our hearts broke as we learned of Angela’s breast cancer battle. Through all life has thrown our way, we’ve formed a beautiful friendship and have plans to write more collections together!

In January, we decided on a Christmas weddings theme, but we wanted it to be different and unique. Ideas sprang to life and six college roommates emerged, each from a different walk of life but bound by friendship. And then, we found ourselves missing our sixth. With prayers and a blessing over Angela’s health and a writing endeavor that’s been a dream for years (read her story on Facebook!), we found a way to include her in the form of a sixth roommate who no longer needed a love story.

Enter Ruth Ann. Married right out of college, she’s been busy cranking out babies like nobody’s business. And when the next bride, Jaycee’s character Hanady, brings them together for a girls’ reunion weekend, it’s Ruth Ann who produces the perfect something borrowed for this circle of friends.

Hanady’s planning a wedding to the wrong groom—just ask Keenan, the injured best friend who’s loved her for years. Wheelchair-bound Leilah doubts she’ll wear the tiara, but her online gaming friend might be too wonderful to resist. Chahna “Ana” Kapoor just knows she’s going to wear the tiara, so she books her dream venue—she just needs her boyfriend to propose and her parents to tone down the drama. After being engaged to Noah for years, Cate is more than ready for the tiara to be hers, but not-so-merry mishaps the week of the wedding threaten a happily ever after. And finally, having watched all of her friends marry and start their families, when Lydia’s ex shows up on her doorstep with an outrageous proposal, she finds it hard to believe her turn might finally have come.

We are so happy to present to you this collection of five interconnected stories where friendship and faith take center stage. For some, it’s new love. For others, it’s finally sealing an old one. Each tale is unique and yet together they weave one overarching message of love, joy, hope, and peace through the Christmas season.

As you read these stories, we pray they touch your heart. We pray they entertain you and maybe even make you laugh a time or two. And lastly, we pray the Christmas truths bless you this holiday season.

Blessings,

Jaycee, Toni, Mikal, Teresa, and Andrea

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, December 7

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 7

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 8

Labor Not in Vain, December 8

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 9

Get Cozy Book Nook, December 9

Remembrancy, December 10

Connect in Fiction, December 10

Texas Book-aholic, December 11

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 12

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, December 12

For Him and My Family, December 13

EmpowerMoms, December 13

She Lives To Read, December 14

Through the Fire Blogs, December 14

Melissa Wardwell’s Back Porch Reads, December 15

deb’s Book Review, December 15

Inklings and notions, December 16

Captive Dreams Window, December 16

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

Livin’ Lit, December 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 18

Simple Harvest Reads, December 18 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 19

CarpeDiem, December 19

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 20

Cultivating Us, December 20

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, the Something Borrowed Authors are giving away the grand prize package of an Amazon gift card, pens, and chocolate!!

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/10462/something-borrowed-celebration-tour-giveaway

Covert Amish Christmas Review and Giveaway

Covert Amish christmas banner

About the Book

Book: Covert Amish Christmas

Author: Mary Alford

Genre: Inspirational Amish Suspense, Christmas

Covert Amish CHristmasFleeing to Amish country might be the only way to survive Christmas…

Hiding in Amish country, former CIA agent Victoria Kauffman’s determined to find evidence to catch the corrupt agents who killed her partner. But when her Christmas refuge is discovered, the sole person she can trust is Amish widower Aaron Shetler. With ruthless—and dangerously powerful—enemies after them, Victoria must use all her training to make sure they live through the holidays.

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think that you should know:

 Covert Amish Christmas by Mary Alford is an Inspirational Amish Suspense. It is a stand alone novel and set at Christmas, but could be read anytime of year as Christmas is just a backdrop and not a main component of the story.

 

What you might need to know:

Aaron lost his wife to Ovarian Cancer prior to the start of the book. Victoria lost her partner to an attack in Afghanistan.

 

What I think about the story:

WOW this was a non stop, action packed adventure, from the first page to the last. The storyline was entertaining, even if it was not always realistic. Victoria was such an intriguing character, having an Amish foundation but having been raised mostly in the English world. Her determination to bring about Justice was admirable.  Aaron was so determined to not just stand by and let Victoria face the danger by herself. It was hard to see him feel responsible for his wife’s illness. I enjoyed reading this book and look forward to reading more of Alford’s works.  This story should appeal to Amish Fiction and Contemporary fiction fans alike.

 

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

Mary Alford New PhotoUSA Today Bestselling Author, Mary Alford, loves giving her readers the un-expected, whether it be in a rugged mountain setting or a peaceful Amish community.

Her titles have appeared on the USA Today Bestselling List, Publisher’s Weekly Bestselling List, and have been finalists in the Daphne Du Maurier award of excellence, The Beverly, The Maggie, and The Selah Awards.

Mary lives in Texas with her husband, two very spoiled cats, and a sweet rescue dog name Cody. Mary is very active online and would love to connect with readers on Face-book and Twitter or any social platforms listed at www.maryalford.net.

More from Mary

When you think about the Amish, you don’t usually associate their simple ways with spies and covert happenings, but that’s the beauty of the imagination. Anything is possible.

As I sat down to pen Covert Amish Christmas, I wanted to create a story that would bring to life the differences between the two worlds and I wanted it to have a Christmas setting to back-drop the story.

Covert Amish Christmas takes place in the breathtaking world of the Amish of Montana where mountains rise to the sky, and snowy woods create the perfect winter wonderland. Christmas is in the air. And so is danger…

I don’t know about you, but I love Christmas books so much because they allow me to return to my favorite time of the year no matter what day is written on the calendar.

And as Christmas quickly approaches, it means it’s time to bake all those delicious holiday treats we all love so much.

One of my favorites is Peppermint Sugar Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting. They are both delicious to eat and fun to give away.

So, I hope you enjoy them, and Covert Amish Christmas, and I pray this year, the Spirit of the season will remain with you all year long.

Peppermint Sugar Cookies with Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

◾2 1/2 cups cake flour, plus more for dusting work surface

◾2 tsp cornstarch

◾1 1/2 tsp baking powder

◾1/2 tsp salt

◾1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature

◾1/4 cup all vegetable shortening (unflavored), at room temperature

◾1 cup granulated sugar

◾1 large egg

◾1 large egg white

◾2 tsp vanilla extract

◾1/2 tsp peppermint extract

◾Crushed candy canes, for topping

Peppermint Cream Cheese Frosting

◾4 oz cream cheese, softened

◾4 Tbsp unsalted butter

◾1/2 tsp peppermint extract

◾2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Directions:

Sift flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt into a large bowl, then whisk it just a few times, set aside. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, on medium speed, whip together butter, shortening and sugar until very pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes, scrapping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add in egg and mix until combine, then add egg white, vanilla and peppermint extract and mix until combine. With mixer running, slowly add in dry ingredients and mix just until combine. Transfer dough to an airtight container and refrigerate 2 hours. Preheat oven to 375 during the last 10 minutes of refrigeration.

Scoop dough out about 3 Tbsp at a time and roll into a ball. Place dough ball on a lightly floured surface, sprinkle top lightly with flour, then using something flat and smooth (such as the storage container lid), press and evenly flatten dough to 1/2″ thick. Transfer flattened dough to a Silpat or parchment paper lined baking sheet and repeat process with remaining dough (you’ll have to use 2 cookie sheets). Bake in preheated oven 9 – 11 minutes. Allow to cool 5 minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Cool completely then frost with Cream Cheese Frosting and sprinkle with crushed candy canes.

For the frosting:

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip together cream cheese and butter until pale and fluffy. Add peppermint extract and powdered sugar and mix until pale and fluffy.

Blessings always,

Mary Alford

Blog Stops

KarenSueHadley, December 5

lakesidelivingsite, December 5

For Him and My Family, December 6

CarpeDiem, December 6

She Lives To Read, December 7

deb’s Book Review, December 7

Inklings and notions, December 8

Genesis 5020, December 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 9

Lighthouse Academy Blog, December 9 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridway)

Betti Mace, December 10

The Avid Reader, December 10

Texas Book-aholic, December 11

Blogging With Carol, December 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 12

Mary Hake, December 12

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

Hallie Reads, December 13

Older & Smarter?, December 14

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

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 15

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, December 15

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 16

Blossoms and Blessings, December 16

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 17

Pause for Tales, December 17

Splashes of Joy, December 18

Simple Harvest Reads, December 18 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of Covert Amish Christmas along with a gift basket containing Spa Gift Basket – Bath and Body Set with Vanilla Fragrance by Lovestee (Bath Gift Basket Includes Shower Gel, Body Lotion, Hand Lotion, Bath Salt, Eva Sponge and a Bath Puff)!!

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/10459/covert-amish-christmas-celebration-tour-giveaway

Dawn of Vengeance Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Dawn of Vengeance

Author: Ronie Kendig

Genre: FICTION / Science Fiction / Space Opera

Release Date: December 8, 2020

A haunting prophecy upended his identity. Now it demands his life.

Once a formidable bounty hunter, Marco Dusan is plagued by insecurity as he tours the realm he now rules. This quiet, backwater planet is not as untouched as he’d once thought. Evidence of collusion between Droseran factions and the powerful Symmachians with their forbidden technology litters his encounters. Worse, all signs indicate Xisya, the alien who tortured him, is still snatching Kynigos Brethren—but to what end?

Lance Corporal Eija Zacdari works hard to win a coveted place on the Symmachian hyperjump program, but instinct tells her their intel is flawed. Despite nearly failing the tests, she is assigned to the team-and lands in the middle of a bewildering conspiracy.

Haunted by a prophecy that promises pain and war, Marco forges alliances to protect the primitive world against Symmachia’s devastating influence. But one truth becomes painfully clear: the biggest threat to their world may be much, much closer to home.

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy Houng

“Sometimes, we do not get what we want, and when something good and true does come along, we are blind to that … treasure.”

Ronie Kendig somehow brings it up a notch with every book that she writes. After finishing her Book of the Wars series, I didn’t think she could stun me speechless again. After reading Brand of Light, the first book in this Droseran Saga, I didn’t know what will happen next. I am indeed stunned speechless and absolutely floored by how the author has brought about another intricately layered and all-encompassing second book with more depth, more characters, and more emotion to this already incredible series (but I will try to form my words so that my review is coherent).
In this space opera fantasy, the planet of Drosero feels so real and the kingdom of Kalonica so tangible. Marco is adrift, extremely vulnerable, and emotional in this book – so different from how he was in the first book and more endearing as he shows this other side of himself. His pride gets whittled down but he also matures significantly. Kersei has a lesser role in this book while Ixion, an elder of Kalonica, has a bigger role. Introduction of new characters like Isaura and Eija is delightful and seeing old characters like Jez and Tigo is equally wonderful. The series needs to be read in order since subplots and details within the overarching theme of finding justice against evil are laid down one at a time and build upon each other. The book is a delectable combination of conspiracy, betrayal, intense action, military strategy, honor, loyalty, heady romance, and great wisdom that will bring thrilling anticipation to every reader.
This book has been on my most anticipated books of 2020 list and is now one of my top 20 reads for the year. If you’re looking for a can’t-put-down book of honor, duty, loss, grace, and redemption, look no further. It’s a must-read book.

I received a copy of the book from Enclave Publishing 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

Ronie Kendig is an award-winning, bestselling author of over twenty titles. An Army brat, Ronie lives a short train ride from New York City with her husband, twin sons, and two fur-sons, VVolt N629, a retired military working dog, and Benning the Stealth Golden. Described as an empath by her literary agent, Ronie has used her degree in psychology to write books that have won the coveted Christy Award, RomanticTimes Reviewers’ Choice Award, The Realm Award, HOLT Medallion Award, and more. Her books have also hit the CBA Bestseller List multiple times.

 

More from Ronie

Throughout the Droseran Saga, Marco Dusan—our much-loved hero—enjoys his favorite drink, warmed Cordi. The inspiration for his citrusy-spiced drink came from a favorite family holiday tradition—“Christmas punch.” My mother-in-law received this recipe while they were stationed in Germany from a colonel’s wife. We make this every Christmas (okay, I make it a lot starting in about late October because it’s so delish). The piquant scent of cranberry, cloves, and orange fills our home every fall and holiday.

The scent of this is apropos for Marco, who tracks by scent. And, interestingly, our noses and smells are connected to memories, which just seemed to demand I come up with some way to create “Marco’s Cordi” for readers. So, this year, I used Adagio Tea’s custom-blend feature to craft a more citrusy blend of Marco’s drink. Now, that’s tea—something Marco doesn’t really enjoy—but add a quarter cup of warmed orange juice, and you’re starting to hit the sweet spot. Marco would be proud!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, December 12

April Hayman, Author, December 12

Texas Book-aholic, December 13

Book Love, December 13 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Worthy2Read, December 14

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 14

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 15

All-of-a-kind Mom, December 15

Where Faith and Books Meet, December 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 16

Wishful Endings, December 17

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, December 17

deb’s Book Review, December 18

Simple Harvest Reads, December 18 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Artistic Nobody, December 19 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 19

For Him and My Family, December 20

Mia Reads, December 20

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 21

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, December 21

Through the Fire Blogs, December 22

Rachael’s Inkwell, December 22

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 23

Inklings and notions, December 23

Inside the Wong Mind, December 24

Blogging With Carol, December 24

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 25

Mary Hake, December 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Ronie is giving away the grand prize package of an “Isaura” themed candle, “Marco’s Cordi” Custom Blend Tea from Adagio, a signed Hardcover of Dawn of Vengeance, and Isaura’s amulet!!

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/104a8/dawn-of-vengeance-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Confident Hope Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: The Confident Hope

Author: E.C. Jackson

Genre: Inspirational Romance

Release Date: September 15, 2020

Is there hope for this love between friends?

Pamela Hayes is a smart, successful business owner with a supportive family and a thriving bakery. She should be the happiest girl in the world. But she can’t shake the melancholy that accompanies every conversation she has with her best friend, Mark. Pamela doesn’t know how much longer she can hide her true feelings.

Why can’t Mark see how perfect they would be together? She would make a much better girlfriend than the one he currently has. Pamela prays he’ll come to his senses soon and realize he’s with the wrong girl. But when her dream comes true, it isn’t the fantasy she had envisioned.

There is trouble in paradise from the start, and all the red flags she’s been ignoring are starting to threaten her confidence…and her relationship with Mark. She’ll have to rely on family and her faith in God to help her secure the hope she so desperately needs.

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
The Confident Hope, an inspirational romance by E.C. Jackson is the fourth book in  Series. It is a standalone book and the storyline is not connected to other books in the series.

What I think about this book:
I am so glad Pam loved Mark because I sure didn’t, being raised as a single child is no excuse for not caring about your friends .Mark entered marriage without loving his wife the way that a husband should. However Pam was not without fault in the story, she went into the marriage with blinders on and when they came off she was determined to continue her marriage but did not seem to demonstrate true forgiveness.  It was hard to watch them work to navigate a marriage that started off with a disaster.  While I do not consider this a traditional romance it is an interesting read with lessons that are worth learning.

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

E.C. Jackson began her writing career with the full-length play Pajama Party. For three and a half years she published the Confidence in Life newsletter for Alpha Production Ministries, in addition to writing tracts and devotionals. Teaching a women’s Bible study at her church for eleven years naturally led to her current endeavor of writing inspirational romance novels and teen and young adult fiction. Her mission: spiritual maturity in the body of Christ through fiction.

“The Write Way: A Real Slice of Life” is the slogan on my website and Facebook author page. If every person reading my book feels connected to the characters, my job is done.

More from E.C. Jackson

When I started writing The Confident Hope, I had an idea of the general story and little else. The only thing concrete was the book’s title and the main characters’ names. Which isn’t surprising. I develop my storylines by letting the characters take me where they will.

As I stared at the computer monitor, I suddenly knew how to begin. Once I had that idea, the first chapter came into focus; then, once again, the words trickled onto the page.

I then had to answer the questions that would direct the story. “Who are Pam and Mark?” and “Why is their story important to tell?” Unfortunately, Pam’s and Mark’s lives mimic what happens to us all. Our hopes and dreams either live or die. Each decision the characters made highlighted who they are and how they chose to handle their seeming successes and defeats.

They could rejoice over obvious successes. Become prideful. Or fail to recognize those blessings. The couple could thank God that some of their aspirations failed. Or pray that the ones they self-fulfilled wouldn’t bankrupt their lives.

Writing about Pam and Mark matured me in numerous avenues. That is what I most treasured about these beloved characters. Viewing their lives added substance to my own during the two years I worked on their story.

“Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed.” 

That scripture fed my heart through each trial I faced when penning my fourth book of the standalone hope series. Writing about these cherished characters increased my faith in God’s victorious hand.

Blog Stops

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 4

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

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 7

For Him and My Family, December 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 9

Texas Book-aholic, December 10

Inklings and notions, December 11

Captive Dreams Window, December 11

deb’s Book Review, December 12

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

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 14

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 15

Simple Harvest Reads, December 16 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

By The Book, December 17 (Author Interview)

Holly Jo Morris, December 17

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, E.C. 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/10457/the-confident-hope-celebration-tour-giveaway

An Ivy Hill Christmas Review and Giveaway

an ivy hill banner (2)

About the Book

Book: An Ivy Hill Christmas

Author: Julie Klassen

Genre: Christmas Historical Romance

Release Date: September, 2020

Ivy Hill ChristmasRichard Brockwell, the younger son of Ivy Hill’s most prominent family, hasn’t been home for Christmas in years. He prefers to live in the London townhouse, far away from Brockwell Court, the old family secret that haunts him, and the shadows of his past mistakes. But then his mother threatens to stop funding his carefree life–unless he comes home for Christmas. Out of options, he sets out for Ivy Hill, planning to be back on a coach bound for London and his unencumbered bachelor life as soon as the festivities are over.

But Christmas in the country presents many surprises, including encounters with an orphaned apprentice, the first love he disappointed years ago, and Arabella Awdry, a young lady who is far more appealing than he recalled–and determined to have nothing to do with him.

Will Christmastime in Ivy Hill, with its village charm, kissing boughs, and joyous songs, change his heart . . . and hers as well?

 

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Mindy Houng

“You’re right. You don’t deserve it. Love and forgiveness are not something you earn. They are gifts. None of us deserves forgiveness. None of us can do enough good deeds to atone for our own failings. If we could, God would not have had to send the Son He loved into the world to die for us. But He did, because He loves us.”

Such a heart-warming, redemptive Christmas novella filled with forgiveness, new beginnings, and reminders of what Christmas is really about. Julie Klassen once again weaves an emotionally complex Regency novella that is nostalgic, enchanting, and oh so delightful. It is clearly a part of the Tales From Ivy Hill series but works well as a stand-alone (I have regretfully not read any of the books in the series but did not have any trouble following the plot or the characters). The dialogue is incredibly witty and clever and the Christmas house party at Brockwell Court felt so warm, fun, and delicious. I loved going through each tradition of Twelve Days of Christmas and truly enjoyed watching Richard’s facade of self-centered and irresponsible gentleman of leisure crumble to reveal the compassionate, hard-working, and resourceful man of honor and beautiful words that he is deep down inside. Arabella, with her generous and loyal heart, is easy to love and root for, though she tries her best to resist Richard’s charms. The secondary characters are equally fascinating and they’re quite well-defined even in the context of a shorter novella format. There is much forgiveness to be asked for and received as these characters revisit their pasts. And the redemptive light and hope of Christmas shines down on them all, especially on Richard.

If you enjoy Christmas novellas, especially those set in Regency England, you will absolutely adore this one. I received a copy of the book from Bethany House 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

Klassen JulieJulie Klassen loves all things Jane–Jane Eyre and Jane Austen. A graduate of the University of Illinois, Julie worked in publishing for 16 years and now writes full-time. Her novels have sold over 1 million copies, and three of her books, The Silent Governess, The Girl in the Gatehouse, and The Maid of Fairbourne Hall, have won the Christy Award for Historical Romance. The Secret of Pembrooke Park was honored with the Minnesota Book Award for Genre Fiction. Julie has also won the Midwest Book Award and a Christian Retailing‘s Best Award, and has been a finalist in the Romance Writers of America’s RITA Awards and ACFW’s Carol Awards. Julie and her husband have two sons and live in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota.

 

More from Julie

My fascination with England began as a girl when I read The Secret Garden and Jane Eyre, and watched A Christmas Carol. I have now been to Great Britain several times, and my affection for the place has only grown. I love the country villages with their stone buildings and thatched roofs, the narrow, winding roads (though not driving on them), the ancient churches, friendly people, plummy accents, and history. Writing fifteen novels set there has been a real pleasure.

An Ivy Hill Christmas includes all the elements of an idyllic Olde English yuletide: A charming village setting, snowfall, mistletoe, caroling, gifts for less fortunate neighbors, and festive gatherings of friends and family. I thoroughly enjoyed researching 19th century Christmas traditions and weaving them into this novella.

In the story, a confirmed bachelor is determined to remain aloof from the celebrations going on around him—and from his mother’s matchmaking schemes. But divine hope, friendship, and unexpected romance change his heart…and his mind. I love a transformation story; don’t you?

If you’ve read the TALES FROM IVY HILL series, you will enjoy returning to the village and spending time with favorite characters. But rest assured, the novella is a standalone, meaning you can enjoy it whether or not you’ve read the other books, as these reviews attest:

“[A] standalone novella that not only beautifully captures the kindness, hope, love, and faith of Christmas but also skillfully evokes the period holiday atmosphere of Regency England.” —Booklist

“This feel-good tale of love and redemption will delight Klassen’s fans and new readers alike.” Publishers Weekly

And if you like the novella, I think you will like the other books as well. An Ivy Hill Christmas would also make a lovely gift for a reading friend.

Finally, if you want to add a British flair to your own modern-day celebrations, buy (or make) mince tarts or Christmas pudding, place Christmas “crackers” (pull-apart gift tubes) on your table and wear the included paper crowns. Refer to Father Christmas instead of Santa; and instead of “Merry,” wish everyone a hearty, “Happy Christmas.”

Happy Christmas!

 

Blog Stops

Through the Lens of Scripture, November 30

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, November 30

Ashley’s Bookshelf, November 30

Christian Bookaholic, November 30

Andrea Christenson, November 30

Texas Book-aholic, December 1

KarenSueHadley, December 1

Robin’s Nest, December 1

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 1

Blessed & Bookish, December 2

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, December 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 2

Mia Reads, December 2

Wishful Endings, December 3

lakesidelivingsite, December 3

Through the Fire Blogs, December 3

For Him and My Family, December 3

Just Your Average reviews, December 3

She Lives To Read, December 4

Remembrancy, December 4

deb’s Book Review, December 4

Writing from the Heart Land, December 4

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 5

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 5

Quiet Workings, December 5

Blogging With Carol, December 5

Spoken from the Heart, December 5

The Christian Fiction Girl, December 6

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, December 6

Connect in Fiction, December 6

Artistic Nobody, December 6 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Worthy2Read, December 7

Genesis 5020, December 7

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 7

Inklings and notions, December 7

Life of Literature, December 7

For the Love of Literature, December 8

Connie’s History Classroom, December 8

Batya’s Bits, December 8

Labor Not in Vain, December 8

Hallie Reads, December 8

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 9

Older & Smarter?, December 9

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, December 9

Jeanette’s Thoughts, December 9

Betti Mace, December 9

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, December 10

Faery Tales Are Real, December 10

Melissa Wardwell’s Back Porch Reads, December 10

Mary Hake, December 10

Daysong Reflections, December 11

Bigreadersite, December 11

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, December 11

Splashes of Joy, December 11

Vicky Sluiter, December 12

To Everything There Is A Season, December 12

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, December 12

Blossoms and Blessings, December 12

The Write Escape, December 12

A Baker’s Perspective, December 13

Bizwings Blog, December 13

Simple Harvest Reads, December 13 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Pause for Tales, December 13

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Julie is giving away the grand prize package of a copy of An Ivy Hill Christmas and the other three books in the Ivy Hill series, plus the winner’s choice of Bingley’s Tea!!

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/103f5/an-ivy-hill-christmas-celebration-tour-giveaway

Rocky Mountain Revenge Review and Giveaway

Rocky Mountain Revenge- banner

About the Book

Book: Rocky Mountain RevengeRocky Mountain Revenge Cover

Author: Rhonda Starnes

Genre: Inspirational Romantic Suspense

Release Date: July, 2020

To survive her deadly homecoming, she’ll need to trust a man from her past…

Temporarily home to help at her family’s vet clinic, Grace Porter has no intentions of staying—but someone’s determined she won’t live long enough to leave. With both Grace and her sister in the crosshairs, her ex-boyfriend, Police Chief Evan Bradshaw, must protect them. But can the single dad lawman uncover the truth about why a killer’s out for vengeance before time runs out?

Click here to get your copy!

Guest Review from Donna Cline

What I think you should know:
Rocky Mountain Revenge is an Inspirational Romantic Suspense by Rhonda Starnes. It is a standalone in the Love Inspired Inspirational Romance group.

What you might need to know:
Evan lost his wife when she was murdered, prior to her tragic murder she suffered from Miscarriage and Postpartum Depression.

What I think about this book:
This was such a fast paced suspenseful story. It started with a shock and didn’t slow down until the end. Grace grew up in a small town, but instead of the close family feeling she always felt like she was being judged. After finally finding a home Evan couldn’t imagine ever leaving it. Starnes did a good job of developing the character’s backstory while still maintaining the fast pace of the story.  With attempted murder and illegal horse racing in a small town where everyone knows each other this story has everything it needs to keep you turning the page to find out if the bad guys can be caught before they catch up with Grace.

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

Rhonda Starnes is a middle school language arts teacher who has dreamed of being a published author since she was in seventh grade. She lives in North Alabama with her husband, who she lovingly refers to as Mountain Man. They enjoy traveling and spending time with their children and grandchildren. Rhonda writes romantic suspense with rugged heroes and feisty heroines.

More from Rhonda

Probably the number one question any author receives is “How did you come up with the idea for the story?”

When the Love Inspired editors announced, in February 2019, they were hosting The Great Love Inspired Author Search, I knew I had to enter. After all I’d spent the last six years targeting the Harlequin Love Inspired lines. This would be my fourth time entering one of their pitch contests, my third pitching to Love Inspired Suspense. The only problem was I didn’t have anything new to enter. They’d already seen all of my manuscripts.

I follow the Love Inspired editors on social media, so I had read several posts on themes and settings they’d like to see. One editor had even mentioned Colorado as a setting she’d like to see in a book. This started my wheels turning because my husband and I lived in Colorado for a few months when we were first married. We loved our time there and have often talked about going back one day. I started researching parts of the state that we didn’t get to visit when we lived there, and then I created the fictional small town of Blackberry Falls.

I’d had an idea in the back of my head for while about a story that involved a heroine who wasn’t in law enforcement but who witnessed a crime while on video chat. That’s how I came up with Grace Porter, a veterinarian who had run away from her small-town roots. And what’s a homecoming story without a reunion romance? Enter, Police Chief Evan Bradshaw, the man Grace had left behind. Once I had the opening scene, main character, and setting in place, everything else just kind of evolved from there.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, December 9

Through the Fire Blogs, December 10

Genesis 5020, December 10

Sara Jane Jacobs, December 11

Simple Harvest Reads, December 11 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For the Love of Literature, December 12

Lighthouse Academy, December 13

Connie’s History Classroom, December 13

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 14

Reviewingbooksplusmore, December 14

Inklings and notions, December 15

Betti Mace, December 15

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 16

deb’s Book Review, December 16

Texas Book-aholic, December 17

lakesidelivingsite, December 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 18

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, December 18

For Him and My Family, December 19

Pause for Tales , December 19

Artistic Nobody, December 20 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

SusanLovesBooks, December 20

Splashes of Joy, December 21

Ashley’s Bookshelf, December 21

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 22

Daysong Reflections, December 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rhonda is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of Rocky Mountain Revenge!!

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/104a4/rocky-mountain-revenge-celebration-tour-giveaway