Saturday, October 20, 2018

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: The 12 Gifts of Christmas by Lena Nelson Dooley



About the Book



Book Title: The 12 Gifts of Christmas
Author: Lena Nelson Dooley
Genre: Christian Romance/ Christmas
Release date: September 4, 2018
Malcolm MacGregor is a descendant of Scotland’s Clan MacGregor and a successful young businessman in Fort Worth, Texas. Alanza Cantalamessa works at a gourmet pizzeria owned by her Brazilian artist mother and her Italian Poppa. Both of them are smitten with each other but Malcolm is too reserved to do much more than make small talk—until a promotion at work that will send him away to Australia for six months. It’s December and he has to do something—fast.
Praying about the situation, Malcolm decides to give her twelve gifts leading up to Christmas. Their families and friends think they are moving too fast. And a gold-digger who tossed Malcolm aside in the past has now decided he’s the man of her dreams.

Can Malcolm and Alanza overcome their obstacles before he has to go abroad? Or is it really not meant to be?
Click here to purchase your copy!
My Thoughts:
This was a cute story that takes place in modern day about a man who has found the woman he wants to marry and pursues her. Malcolm has set up a time schedule for himself and is intent on making Alanza, whom he has only ever meant at her parent’s restaurant, his wife. He wants to be married before he leaves for Australia for a 6-month stint for his job.

Although this story is a bit out of the box, I really enjoyed watching Malcolm’s pursuit of Alanza. At first, he did come off a bit strong, but as I got to know him along with Alanza- he became more romantic and a true Scottish hero. I was pleasantly surprised as there were a couple of surprising twists and turns to the story of a man giving twelve gifts to a woman he barely knows but wants to marry.

This was a cute and fun recommended holiday read. I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

About the Author

Multi-published, award-winning author Lena Nelson Dooley is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, her local chapter in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, the Christian Authors’ Network, and Gateway Church in Southlake, Texas. Her forty-plus books have sold more than 875,000 copies. Lena’s books have appeared on the CBA, ECPA, and Publisher Weekly bestseller lists, as well as some Amazon bestseller lists. She also writes a popular blog, A Christian Writer’s World, that features other authors’ books. The blog received the Readers’ Choice Blog of the Year Award from the Book Club Network.
Lena is a three-time finalist in the Carol Awards ACFW contest. Her 2010 release, Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico, won the 2011 Will Rogers Medallion Award for excellence in publishing Western Fiction. Her next series, McKenna’s Daughters: Maggie’s Journey appeared on a reviewers’ Top Ten Books of 2011 list. It also won the 2012 Selah award for Historical Novel. The second, Mary’s Blessing, was a Selah Award finalist for Romance novel. Catherine’s Pursuit, released in 2013, was the winner of the NTRWA Carolyn Reader’s Choice contest, took second place in the CAN Golden Scroll Novel of the Year award, and won the Will Rogers Medallion bronze medallion. Her book, A Heart’s Gift, won RWA’s Faith, Hope, and Love Readers’ Choice Award in July 2017.

Lena is also the host of The Lena Nelson Dooley Show on the Along Came a Writer blogtalk radio network. She has experience in screenwriting, acting, directing, and voice-overs, and currently serves on the board of directors of Higher Ground Films. She has been featured in Christian Fiction Online Magazine, ACFW Journal, Book Fun Magazine, Charisma Magazine, and Christian Retailing.
Guest Post from Lena
She took the pan off the burner, dropped tiny marshmal-lows into the waiting over-sized mugs, and filled them with the fragrant hot chocolate. “Do you want to drink it here, or would you rather go in the living room? The sofa is more comfortable.”
“Whatever you want to do.” His honeyed tone wrapped around her like a warm blanket.
She handed a mug to him, picked up her own, along with coasters and two napkins, and headed into the living room. He followed.
Alanza’s Best Hot Chocolate
Ingredients:
4 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup good quality cocoa powder
3 tbls. honey
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 dark chocolate bar
1 can real whipped cream
Maraschino cherries 
Instructions:
Heat milk over medium to low heat, stirring constantly until milk starts to bubble slightly (about 10 minutes). Meanwhile, mix sugar and cocoa together until well blended. When milk is ready, gradually add in sugar, cocoa, and honey, stirring constantly. Put heat on low and add shavings of chocolate bar and vanilla. Continue stirring until chocolate has melted. Remove from heat and pour into mugs. Add whipped cream, chocolate shavings, and cherries on top, as desired.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, October 9
Among the Reads, October 10
A Diva’s Heart, October 10
Baker Kella, October 11
Britt Reads Fiction, October 13
Texas Book-aholic, October 13
Susan Loves Books, October 14
Splashes of Joy, October 15
Creating Romance, October 16
Bigreadersite, October 16
Mary Hake, October 17
Maureen’s Musings, October 18
Bibliophile Reviews, October 20
Pause for Tales, October 20
More Of Him, October 21
Carpe Diem, October 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Lena is giving away a grand prize of a $20 Starbuck’s Gift Card and a surprise Christmas gift!!
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/d5c9/the-12-gifts-of-christmas-celebration-tour-giveaway

Friday, October 19, 2018

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: This Courageous Journey by Misty M. Beller


About the Book


Book Title: This Courageous Journey
Author: Misty Beller
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release date: October 9, 2018
As the fifth daughter in a family of nine children, Noelle Grant has spent her life working to be unique. Her love of stories helps define her goal—to be known around the country as one of the top news correspondents of her time. And what better way to uncover sensational stories than to travel through the mountain wilderness to visit the brother she hasn’t seen in years? The trip comes together perfectly as she plans to journey with family friends who will be settling in the same area. Her first inkling that things may not be as perfect as planned comes in the form of the mountain man they hire as their guide for the final leg of the journey.
When Daniel Abrams agrees to guide the small group of easterners along his usual journey northward to the Canadian mountains, his gut tells him he’s making the wrong decision. But if he doesn’t take them, who will? The man in charge refuses to consider turning back. As they start out, Daniel can’t help but notice the woman traveling under the care of her friends. Though she appears too genteel to last long in these mountains, she soon reveals a strength that draws him more than he should allow.
As the dangers of this wilderness become more than the group bargained for, Noelle is faced with the choice to delay her journey northward or proceed alone with the man she’s come to trust against all reason. She never imagines her decision will place her—and the man she loves—in a situation more hazardous than any story her imagination could conjure.
Click here to purchase your copy!
My Thoughts:

This Courageous Journey was quite a read and the second book I have read recently where I was feeling the effects of the story. For instance if the author was describing a very cold scene, I got really cold. My feet got so numb reading this story I thought they would never thaw.

But what a story it was. Noelle, setting off on a journey with another family and their guide, Daniel, could not possibly realize how harrowing her journey would be (I wonder that if she did, would she have just stayed home?). Noelle is headed to her brother’s place in Canada and also to see that her dreams are fulfilled by writing for a well-known paper the adventure stories of all those she meets.

Daniel is quite an enigma to her and at first he remains a closed book to her. As their adventure continues and becomes all the more perilous, Noelle and Daniel realize how much they need each other on this journey and possibly the journey of life.

The things author Beller put these poor characters through had my fingers turning those pages fast and furious. The story of Daniel and Noelle and their adventure will stay with me for quite some time.

I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

About the Author


Misty M. Beller writes romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.
She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and daughters now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

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

Guest Post from Misty

Ever Been Struck by Lightning? 
One of the fun things about being a writer is the crazy topics I get to research. Without giving away too much of the story, part of my research for This Courageous Journey included uncovering what happens when lightning strikes a person. It turns out anything can happen!
Surprisingly, about nine out of ten people struck by lightning live to tell their story. Each person’s experience seems to be different—some are knocked unconscious, while others are horribly aware of everything happening. One person who was struck said it seemed as if time slowed to a crawl and a white haze surrounded him like a bubble, as excruciating pain shot through him.
People usually try to determine the path the lightning traveled through them, based on where burn marks appear on both skin and clothing, but sometimes that can be difficult if jewelry or coins were touching the body. Survivors might suffer a variety of short- and long-term effects, including—but not limited to—cardiac arrest, confusion, seizures, dizziness, muscle aches, deafness, headaches, memory deficits, distractibility, personality changes, and chronic pain, among others. That may sound like an awful list, but it does beat the alternative!
As I considered the possible effects of a lightning strike when I was writing This Courageous Journey, I was reminded once again how magnificent God’s creation is. Both the incredible power contained in one streak of lightning, and the beautiful inner workings of the bodies He created for us. As the Psalmist said, we are “fearfully and wonderfully made!”

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, October 11
The Power of Words, October 12
Multifarious, October 12
Maureen’s Musings, October 12
Splashes of Joy, October 14
Artistic Nobody, October 14 (Spotlight)
Joy of Reading, October 15
Mary Hake, October 15
Livin Lit, October 16
KarenSueHadley, October 17
Remembrancy, October 18
Carpe Diem, October 18
Pause for Tales, October 19
Bigreadersite, October 19
Bibliophile Reviews, October 20
Wishful Endings, October 22
Simple Harvest Reads, October 22 (Guest post Mindy Houng)
Texas Book-aholic, October 24

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away a 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/d4cf/this-courageous-journey-celebration-tour-giveaway

Review, Special Offer, and Giveaway: Swell Time for a Swing Dance by Cindy Vincent



About the Book:

December 31, 1941. Young Houston socialite Tracy Truworth, Apprentice P.I., can’t imagine a better way to send off the old year and ring in the new than by dancing through the night with her fella, Pete Stalwart. But a swell evening soon takes a terrible turn when a fellow dancer with moves like Fred Astaire ends up dead on the dance floor. And before the hands on the clock can point to midnight, a finger is pointed at Pete, accusing him of murdering the young man.


Then after Pete is hauled away in handcuffs, the night goes from bad to worse . . . and Tracy’s sweet grandmother is accused of stealing an ancient artifact from the museum. Now Tracy must team up with her boss and mentor, Sammy Falcone, in order to find the stolen statuette, unmask the real murderer, and restore the reputations of those she loves the most.

Yet as America becomes embroiled in another world war, the risks and sacrifices intensify—even on the homefront. And Tracy soon finds her own home invaded by a near parade of questionable characters, while unsavory suspects lurk in the shadows, and a ruthless reporter makes her life miserable. With time ticking against her, Tracy must be willing to swing past the setbacks and hop through the hazards if she hopes to solve a mystery that involves a lot of dancing . . . and a lot more danger.



My Thoughts:

Once again, Cindy Vincent delivers a wonderfully engrossing 1940s atmosphere in the high-stakes world where Nazis have secretly infiltrated the US- and Tracy and her fella have been framed for the latest crime!

The story seemed to be going at a comfortable pace at the beginning, but, boy, it really picked up with Indiana Jones undertones and secret societies- besides just the Nazis in the US- and relics that everyone wants to get a hold of. It was quite the twisting mystery for our heiress-turned-private-investigator-apprentice who relies on her woman's intuition and favorite fictional character to figure out the mystery alongside her Humphrey Bogart look-alike partner. Together, they faced their greatest obstacle yet- the creepy, eccentric artist friend of Tracy's grandmother. She may or may not have anything to do with the mystery, but there's definitely something wonky about her...


This was another fun story in this series. I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

Reviewed by Jes

Author Bio:

CINDY VINCENT, M.A. Ed., was born in Calgary, Alberta, and has lived all around the US and Canada. She is the creator of the Mysteries by Vincent murder mystery party games and the Daisy Diamond Detective Series games for girls. She is also the award-winning author of the Buckley and Bogey Cat Detective Caper novels and the Daisy Diamond Detective series. She lives in Houston, Texas with her husband and an assortment of fantastic felines.


Giveaway!



Time to get “in the mood” with a fun 1940s-themed giveaway! Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter for a chance to win a pewter ornament from The National WWII Museum, a Glenn Miller CD, and paperback copies of the first two books in the Tracy Truworth series: Bad Day for a Bombshell and Swell Time for a Swing Dance. Due to shipping costs and varying international laws, this giveaway is open to US residents (age 18 or older) only. Good luck!



a Rafflecopter giveaway