Friday, May 14, 2021

Review and Giveaway: The Ack Ack Girl by Chris Karlsen

 


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

The Ack Ack Girl
By Chris Karlsen
Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 221 Pages
February 14, 2021

Love and War

A country under attack and the story of one woman's fight to protect England and her heart.

1941. The German war machine has crushed all of Europe-only England holds fast. To force a surrender, the German Luftwaffe bombs cities and villages the length of the country. As the battle rages, Britain is in desperate need to put more pilots in the air.

To free up more men a new unit is formed: The Ack Ack Girls. These special teams of courageous women will now fight in the anti-aircraft stations. Determined to be part of the effort, Ava Armstrong, volunteers for one of the special teams.

Her unit just happens to be located near an RAF airfield teaming with pilots. Sparks fly, and not just from artillery, When Ava crosses paths with Chris Fairfield, a handsome and cocky pilot stationed there. But nothing is easy in time of war, not even love.

(Affiliate links included.)

My Thoughts:

Love in the time of war seemed to be quite the challenge, and maybe even a little more sweeter as couples lives were in constant danger. This story is told through the eyes of Ava Armstrong who was a woman living in Britain during the time of World War 2. There are some major events that happen to her that make her stand up and say enough is enough and to join up with the war effort against Germany. I have not heard of the Ack Ack girls before, I am quite amazed at their role and the danger they undertook as women to help their country.

What really gripped me was the strong emotion that these women had. They were not damsels in distress, nor did they want to be super women. They wanted their home and country back. They were tired of the destruction and death that was rained down on them and they wanted a bit of normalcy back. So they joined up in dangerous combat missions, that could take their lives, and fought back with their fellow countrymen. And along the way, some of them fell in love.

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



About the Author


I was raised in Chicago. My father was a history professor, and my mother, a voracious reader who passed on a love of history and books to me along with a love of travel.

I am a retired police detective. After twenty-five years in law enforcement, I decided to pursue my dream of writing. I write a historical-time travel romance series called Knights in Time and a historical suspense called The Bloodstone Series.

I also have a historical romance series called Love & War. A free copy of the first book in this series is available through my newsletter: https://www.subscribepage.com/Moonlight_Serenade.


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Saturday, May 8, 2021

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: The Secret Place by Camille Eide

 



About the Book

Book:  The Secret Place

Author: Camille Eide

Genre: Contemporary women’s fiction/romance

Release date: April 15, 2021

How far can love bend before it breaks?

Josie Norris became an instant mommy when her twin sister Nadine handed over her newborn son and vanished. What Josie saw as a temporary arrangement grew into a mother-son bond too deep to uproot. But with her irrational sister threatening to steal him back, Josie has been living the last few years with Kennedy in hiding, afraid to go home.

When Aunt Libby—the only person who knows the truth about Kennedy—suffers a traumatic head injury, Josie rushes to her McKenzie River home to help Gram care for the woman who raised her. But not only is Libby’s injury causing family secrets to spill, it’s forcing Josie to see the women in her life in a new light.

Will—a ranger who Kennedy adores and who Josie is determined not to—is desperate to help the woman who has stolen his affections. But can Josie ever truly be authentic with the man she loves? With her son’s fate hanging in the balance, she is faced with the choice to risk everything she loves in order to bridge the most impossible gulfs.

In this story of mothers, daughters, and sisters, Josie must find the grace to forgive people for not being who she needed them to be…and the courage to surrender her fears to the God who has never once left her side.

 

Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts:

Mothers, daughters, and sisters, all women who are strong and play a role in each others lives. The Secret Place is a story of family, mostly women who are trying to find their place in the world and with each other.

In the Norris family theirs seems to be a cycle of missing fathers and of long held family secrets even up to the big secret that Josie is keeping from her son, 4 year old Kennedy. Always on the run and trying to stay a few steps ahead of her lies and past catching up on her, Josie's pace is brought to a complete stop when her Aunt Libby suffers a terrible accident. Josie and Kennedy must pack up again and return home to the one place Josie has tried to stay away from. But both her aunt and grandmother need her.

Libby suffered a severe brain injury and due to that and the way it affected her while trying to heal, secrets are unleashed. But in keeping these secrets, was that really for the best? Josie must comes to grips with reality and terms with her family, especially her twin sister before she can ever move on and have a normal life. Especially when a certain man steps into her life and wants to be more.

Author Eide has such a way with telling a story and pulling you in to care about these people's lives. Taking on the relationships of familial women and their hurts and sickness and the effects of abandonment on one's life- this story shows that women love fiercely.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own. 

About the Author


Camille Eide (EYE-dee) is the award-winning author of poignant, inspirational love stories including The Memoir of Johnny Devine. Camille lives in Oregon with her husband and has three adult kids and five grandkids. She loves baking, muscle cars, and the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest. She also loves the liberating truth and wisdom of God’s word, and hopes that her stories will stir your heart, strengthen your faith, and encourage you on your journey.

 

More from Camille

Secrets That Won’t Stay Hidden

Josie, the heroine in The Secret Place, faces more than one dilemma as a result of imperfect confidantes and their unkept secrets. So what inspired this story?

Many years ago, my late father-in-law suffered a traumatic brain injury and was life-flighted to a hospital 150 miles away. Family members gathered and were told to prepare for the possibility that he wouldn’t last the night. In an answer to many prayers, he made it through the night, but was in a coma, and no one knew what his future held or what long term effects his injuries would have.

His recovery was long, strange, and uncertain. In the first two weeks, he went from unconscious to incoherent to muttering. Then he progressed to forming real words, but what he said made no sense.

As his communication began to improve, his speech turned into an ongoing narrative. He talked about events and people and things long ago—including things we hadn’t heard before, things that confused and surprised family members young and old. We realized that these revelations were not simply a product of his addled brain, but in fact true. To our dismay, his social filters and verbal etiquette were gone, which made his kids and grandkids more than a little nervous. What kinds of memories and expressions would we hear from this beloved man of faith whom we all suspected had been a bit of a rascal as a youth?

To everyone’s relief, though my father-in-law said peculiar things and told us stories no one knew about, he didn’t have any shocking skeletons in his closet, and after eight weeks, he was pretty much back to his sensible, knowing self. But the fact that his private thoughts and potential secrets had at one point been so completely exposed sparked some intriguing “what if” questions in this writer’s mind:

  • What if you lost the ability to keep your private thoughts and secrets safe?
  • How might your life change if your secrets or some hidden past were exposed?
  • What if the person to whom you’ve entrusted a most crucial secret suddenly couldn’t?

The book’s title refers to several kinds of secret place. I look forward to hearing how many secret places readers can find in this story.

-Camille

Blog Stops

 Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 27

Genesis 5020, April 27

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 28

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 30

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, April 30

deb’s Book Review, May 1

For Him and My Family, May 2

Blogging With Carol, May 2

Inklings and notions, May 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 4

Mary Hake, May 4

Texas Book-aholic, May 5

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 6

By The Book, May 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 7

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, May 8

Pause for Tales, May 8

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 9

The Adventures Of A Travelers Wife, May 10

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Camille is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon card & a signed 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/10b28/the-secret-place-celebration-tour-giveaway


Thursday, May 6, 2021

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: Hope Between the Pages by Pepper Basham

 



About the Book


Book:  Hope Between the Pages

Author: Pepper Basham

Genre: Christian Historical

Release date: April, 2021

Uncover the Story Behind a One-Hundred-Year-Old Love Letter

Visit historic American landmarks through the Doors to the Past series. History and today collide in stories full of mystery, intrigue, faith, and romance.

Clara Blackwell helps her mother manage a struggling one-hundred-year old family bookshop in Asheville, North Carolina, but the discovery of a forgotten letter opens a mystery of a long-lost romance and undiscovered inheritance which could save its future. Forced to step outside of her predictable world, Clara embarks on an adventure with only the name Oliver as a hint of the man’s identity in her great-great-grandmother’s letter. From the nearby grand estate of the Vanderbilts, to a hamlet in Derbyshire, England, Clara seeks to uncover truth about family and love that may lead to her own unexpected romance.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

My Thoughts:

What a lovely, romantic, magical, and bittersweet time split novel this was. I adore books and this story focuses on a few characters who also know the power of story and know their magical powers.

Clara Blackwell is a good woman. She owns a bookstore that has been in her family for a few generations and she cares for her mother who is ill with the help of her cousin while they all are missing her late father. Unfortunately, there is a missing deed that needs to be found and the mystery of her great grandmother Sadie, who started the bookstore.

I enjoyed traveling back in time to the Biltmore estate in 1915, at the beginning of World War One. I also enjoyed traveling along with Clara to England in the now and visualizing with her as a character the sights and sounds and smells she witnessed on her first trip there.

This was a magical story that drew me in as the stories within evolved. Both made my heart glad while also being bittersweet. Both Clara and Sadie had dreams of love and more, but both needed to wait for the perfect time. I really like the lesson that we must embrace our present. Like Clara, sometimes I long for the past and worry about the future too much, as I don't even see the time I have.

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


About the Author


Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance peppered with grace and humor with southern Appalachian flair. Both her historical and contemporary novels have garnered recognition in the Grace Awards, Inspys, and ACFW Carol Awards. Her historical romance, The Thorn Healer, was a finalist in the 2018 RT Awards. Her historical romance novels, My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge and The Red Ribbon, and her contemporary novels, the Mitchell’s Crossroads and Pleasant Gap series, showcase her Appalachian heritage, as well as her love for humor and family. She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC where she is the mom of five great kids, a speech-language pathologist to about fifty more, and a lover of chocolate, jazz, hats, and Jesus.

 

More from Pepper

Books are a uniquely portable magic – Stephen King

Appalachia is known for having a high illiteracy rate. A place of beautiful scenery and rugged landscapes, the people of the mountains developed stories through oral storytelling much more than “book learning”.  As a young girl growing up in this world, I loved hearing my granny share tales from up to five generations ago, filling in the narrative gaps between a birth date and a death date on a tombstone – giving flesh and breath to the stone-etched names.

It’s no surprise then, with a heart cultivated from rich oral stories, I fell in love with reading. Books became that “portable magic” that took me places my little Appalachian community couldn’t provide. I fell in love with the Boxcar Children and Nancy Drew. Wept through the end of Bridge to Terabithia and Old Yeller. Traveled to the plains with Sarah Plain and Tall and fell in love with horses with The Black Stallion. But when I was in seventh grade, I read my very first “British” novel, The Secret Garden. In that one introduction, my world expanded into mysterious English manor houses and British classics. Before long, I’d consumed Jane Eyre, Austen’s classics, some Dickens, Dracula, Frankenstein…and the list goes on! And then…I found Tolkien and Lewis – and the ‘real’ world swelled into OTHER worlds.

I’m grateful for true stories of book-loving pioneers traveling into the world of Appalachia to provide books and literacy training to “my people”, because I know some of those books made their way to my tiny elementary school library…and not only brought me the chance to discover stories, but to write them too!

Isn’t it amazing how books can do that?

In Hope Between the Pages, I wanted to bring the same awe and discovery I felt as a child (and continue to feel as an adult reader) to the story of two people whose words had seemed small. Stories stretched their worlds, but the stories also gave them wonderful imaginations and positive perspectives. It’s still amazing to me that ink-and-paper words can make such a lasting impact on hearts and minds. They can lead us to dream, teach us new things, encourage our hearts, help us to think outside the box, swell our imaginations, broaden our horizons, and encourage our hope.

Books are not a replacement for real adventures and relationships, but they certainly provide a beautiful “door” into other lives and worlds that we may never have a chance to experience in real life. Sadie, my historical heroine, and Clara, my contemporary heroine, both have kept close to home but traveled greatly through books…and BOTH are given the opportunity to reach beyond the bindings to discover real-life adventures. I’d like to think that their love for stories helped them have the courage to step away from the page and into their own tales even more prepared than they would have been without stories.

What are some of your favorite books you read as a child? Did any of them influence you to become a more avid reader?

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, April 24

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 24

Reflections From My Bookshelves, April 24

Worthy2Read, April 24

Texas Book-aholic, April 25

Reviewingbooksplusmore, April 25

Christian Bookaholic, April 25

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 25

She Lives To Read, April 26

Books and Everyday Life, April 26

For the Love of Literature, April 26

For Him and My Family, April 26

Wishful Endings, April 27

Bigreadersite, April 27

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, April 27

deb’s Book Review, April 27

Inklings and notions, April 28

Connect in Fiction, April 28

Writing from the Heart Land, April 28

Blogging With Carol, April 28

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, April 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 29

Life of Literature, April 29

Pick a good book, April 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 30

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 30

Betti Mace, April 30

Kathleen’s Blog, April 30

lakesidelivingsite, May 1

Connie’s History Classroom, May 1

Fiction Book Lover, May 1

Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 1

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, May 2

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, May 2

Godly Book Reviews, May 2

Mary Hake, May 2

Older & Smarter?, May 3

Genesis 5020, May 3

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, May 3

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 4

Melissa Wardwell’s Back Porch Reads , May 4

Blossoms and Blessings, May 4

sodbusterLiving, May 4

Splashes of Joy, May 5

Where Faith and Books Meet , May 5

Simple Harvest Reads, May 5 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Through the Fire Blogs, May 5

Pause for Tales, May 6

To Everything There Is A Season, May 6

Remembrancy, May 6

Lights in a Dark World, May 6

Live.Love.Read., May 7

Karen Sue Hadley, May 7

Amanda Tero, blog, May 7

The Write Escape, May 7

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Pepper 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/10b27/hope-between-the-pages-celebration-tour-giveaway


Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: Sword of Trust by Debbie Lynne Costello

 



About the Book

Book:  Sword of Trust

Author: Debbie Lynne Costello

Genre: Christian Fiction Romance Medieval

Release date: March 15, 2021

Deirdre Mackenzie has spent her life hiding from her father and hating the English. However, when she is caught stealing from an English laird, his unexpected kindness begins to melt away her hatred and strums lonely heartstrings longing for love.  Bryce Warwick can’t believe the boy his men caught is actually a young woman. After several attempts to lure the truth from her, he determines she is as deceitful as his late fiancée who nearly cost him his life. But the woman is the least of his worries with the turbulence brought on by threats of another border war and by King Richard’s distrust of the nobles. 

With the boundary in unrest, Bryce entertains a Scottish chieftain unaware it is Deirdre’s father, seeking peace for his people. Fearful that her father will discover she is alive, Deirdre steals Bryce’s signet ring, hoping a missive from the laird will keep her father away. But when the ring is used instead for treason, she realizes too late she’s been betrayed and Bryce will hang for the crime. With old wounds that need to heal and adversaries who could end their chances at true love, both must learn to trust in a way they never knew possible.


Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts:

Knights, chivalry, sword battles, and true love, that is the kind of story that can take me away on quite an adventure. I was delighted to read another medieval story from the pen of author Costello. This is the second in her Winds of Change series, which does well as a stand-alone, but why miss the adventure and romance of the first book?

Deirdre has lived a life pretending to be a boy on her Uncle's land since she was a young child. She was cared for by an old woman as she had been told how cruel her father is and her mother hid her away. She would give anything to be with her mother again, but she keeps up the ruse and almost kills herself as she helps her Scottish kin raid an English lord's land.

Bryce has had enough of the raiding. He is a fair man but the raiding must stop. Then he catches a young woman who is pretending to be a man. He has no idea who she is trying to fool, because he can see right through her charade.

Bryce and Deirdre, are enemies, one Scottish the other English, who have two different viewpoints and opinions of who is in the wrong and who is not. With traitors all around and an English king who only cares for himself, these two become unwilling partners on the same side. There is plenty of action, political intrigue, and a lot of secrets and family drama that come to light. There are plenty of trust issues these two must muddle through as well especially as you root for these two just to forgive and make up. If you want a good medieval tale, pick up this series.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the author. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own. 

About the Author

 

Debbie Lynne Costello is the author of Sword of Forgiveness, Amazon’s #1 seller for Historical Christian Romance. She has enjoyed writing stories since she was eight years old. She raised her family and then embarked on her own career of writing the stories that had been begging to be told. She and her husband have four children and live in upstate South Carolina with their 4 horses, 3 dogs, a miniature donkey, and 6 peking ducks.

 

More from Debbie Lynne

It is my desire as an author to draw my readers into my story so they feel invested in the hero and heroine and part of their journey, whether it is set in 19th Century Charleston, South Carolina or 14th Century Northumberland, England. One of the ways I love to do this is with professions, hobbies, and cooking. In Sword of Trust my heroine, Deirdre has become quite proficient with a bow and arrow. She’s had plenty of practice and is driven to be the best, perhaps to prove to herself because she is a lass in lad’s clothing. The long bow was a popular weapon in the Middle Ages and was used in battle in The Hundred Years’ War. But the bow was not just a weapon of war, the bow was also a weapon for food. And Deirdre loves to hunt with a flat bow. In her excitement she runs into a wee bit of trouble with the king. Some trivia for you: Because of its elasticity, the yew tree was used in making the long bow. Even after fire arms were introduced the long bow continued to be used for battles. And due to its popularity, by the end of the sixteenth century, mature yew trees were nearly extinct in Northern Europe.

Unfortunately, I can’t really give you instructions on bow making or lessons on how to shoot accurately. Instead, I’m going to share a recipe for the medieval treat, gyngerbrede. In Sword of Trust, Bryce gets his cook to make gyngerbrede. He fills a bag with them and takes them north to the Scottish borderland to hand out to the children. Sweets have been loved for thousands of years. Today we know that sugar is bad for us. Regardless of that, we still crave the empty calories. Some things never change. Here is a wee bit of fun trivia for you. During the first century in some countries, sugar was only used for medicinal purposes and thought to heal many ailments.

 

Gyngerbrede

Ingredients

1 loaf of wheat bread, grounded into breadcrumbs

1 cup of honey

3/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ginger

1/4 tsp black pepper

 

Preparation

In a medium to large pan, bring your honey to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the foam that collects on the top and sides. Add your cinnamon, ginger, and pepper. Stir well. When your spices are mixed in the honey begin adding your bread crumbs one cup at a time. Mix well and then knead it thoroughly. You can divide your dough up into quarters to make it easier to work with and roll out. Cut them into 1” squares. Dust the squares with a mixture of one part cinnamon and two parts sandalwood.

Blog Stops

Inklings and notions, April 23

Britt Reads Fiction, April 23

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 24

Connect in Fiction, April 25

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 26

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 27

Connie’s History Classroom, April 28

Bizwings Blog, April 28

deb’s Book Review, April 29

Simple Harvest Reads , April 29(Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, April 30

Betti Mace, May 1

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 1

Texas Book-aholic, May 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 3

The Book Chic Blog, May 3

Pause for Tales, May 4

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 5

Mary Hake, May 5

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, May 6

 

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Debbie is giving away the grand prize of 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/10b26/sword-of-trust-celebration-tour-giveaway


Thursday, April 29, 2021

Review: Present Danger by Elizabeth Goddard

 

About:

Hidden crimes. Open threats. Long-buried secrets.
They'll be fighting for the truth--and their lives.

Former FBI Special Agent Jack Tanner is working as a detective in Montana when he comes across a body in the national forest during a search and rescue mission. He's committed to finding the killer, even if it means working alongside his old flame, US Forest Service Special Agent Terra Connors.

When Terra discovers that the murder victim had ties to a powerful and dangerous trafficker of archaeological artifacts, the investigation takes a deadly turn--one that hits too close to home. As Terra fears she lacks the courage to face what comes next, Jack is more determined than ever to protect her. But he's failed her before.

If he fails this time, it will cost them far more than just their hearts.


My Thoughts:

There is an ominous presence of danger in this story that introduces us to Agent Terra Connors and Agent Jack Tanner. Starting with a plane crash that pretty much picks up the pace for this entire book and it could be relentless and hard to put down at times.

So there is a murderer on the loose and the mystery as to who and why and what is not easily answered. I certainly could not guess, correctly anyway. Not only is the danger very real, but Jack and Terra have a romantic past that did not work out and their lives after took some very different turns. Now they are both working on this case and it can be difficult to hide your feelings and hurt.

The secondary characters were very interesting as well, and I know that some of them will be the main characters in the continuation of the series. I like getting to know them a little bit and the history they have. 

I found the mountain setting and the way the different authorities worked together and depended on one another fascinating. I liked seeing the teamwork that can help save so many lives.

This was a good action packed beginning to a new series that I look forward to continuing.

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

About the Author:


Elizabeth Goddard is the USA Today bestselling and award-winning author of more than fifty novels, including Present Danger and the Uncommon Justice series. Her books have sold over one million copies. She is a Carol Award winner and a Daphne du Maurier Award finalist. When she's not writing, she loves spending time with her family, traveling to find inspiration for her next book, and serving with her husband in ministry. For more information about her books, visit her website at www.ElizabethGoddard.com.

Monday, April 26, 2021

Review: All That Really Matters by Nicole Deese

 

About:

Molly McKenzie's bright personality and on-trend fashion and beauty advice have made her a major social media influencer. When her manager-turned-boyfriend tells her of an upcoming audition to host a makeover show for America's underprivileged youth, all her dreams finally seem to be coming true. There's just one catch: she has little experience interacting with people in need.

To gain an edge on her competitors, she plans to volunteer for the summer at a transitional program for aged-out foster kids, but the program's director, Silas Whittaker, doesn't find her as charming as her followers do. Despite his ridiculous rules and terms, Molly dives into mentoring, surprising herself with the genuine connections and concern she quickly develops for the girls--and Silas. But just as everything seems perfectly aligned for her professional future, it starts to crumble under the pressure. And as her once-narrow focus opens to the deep needs of those she's come to know, she must face the ones she's neglected inside herself for so long.

My Thoughts:

I adored this book. This was quite a layered story to unwrap and I enjoyed every moment of it. It also touched my heart in ways I was not expecting.

Molly is a guru in makeup and fashion. She is a twin and loves her brother very much but they see life very differently. He is a pastor and she is a social media personality. Their relationship is poignant and close and I liked how they stuck with each other. I wish Molly's parents were a little more in her life, but I have met people like them before so they were cast in a realistic light.

Silas comes from a completely different background, but he was adopted into a strong and compassionate family that helped develop him into the man he is today. Silas's mission in life, his ministry, was a unique and very needed one. I do not know if there is such homes where I live, but it is a great idea.

When Silas and Molly met I knew their relationship was going to be really fun to watch. I was not disappointed. Silas and all of his proper ways compared to the ever exuberant and dreams big Molly- had me on the edge of my seat for them to get together. The fireworks from the beginning, to the friendship that led to a slow burn romance. Their banter when they were unsure of one another and when they began to fall in love was very witty and the nickname Molly had for Silas was spectacular.

When the story gets to the point, of all that really matters, the aha moment for Molly and Silas was priceless. I consider this a very relevant book for today in all of the social media madness that exists. I highly recommend this story.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

About the Author:

Nicole Deese's (www.nicoledeese.com) eight humorous, heartfelt, and hope-filled novels include the 2017 Carol Award-winning A Season to Love. Her 2018 release, A New Shade of Summer, was a finalist in the RITA Awards, Carol Awards, and INSPY Awards. Both of these books are from her bestselling Love in Lenox series. When she's not working on her next contemporary romance, she can usually be found reading one by a window overlooking the inspiring beauty of the Pacific Northwest. She lives in small-town Idaho with her happily-ever-after hubby, two rambunctious sons, and princess daughter with the heart of a warrior.

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Review and Giveaway: A Marriage of Inconvenience by Amy Vastine

 


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

A Marriage of Inconvenience
(Stop the Wedding! #3)
By Amy Vastine
Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 213 Pages
April 1, 2021 by Harlequin Heartwarming

She’s met the perfect man…
But he’s engaged!

Wedding planner Sophia Reed never imagined she’d meet her perfect man during a bank robbery. Evan Anderson is handsome and funny and makes Sophia believe in love at first sight. There’s only one small hitch—he’s engaged to someone else, and Sophia is planning his wedding! But Evan’s wedding is purely a business arrangement…and true love might just turn this almost-perfect wedding into a beautiful catastrophe!

My Thoughts:

I always enjoy marriage of convenience stories, both historical and contemporary. This one is slightly different. It is a marriage of convenience between two good friends that will benefit both for awhile. And while there is no passion or true love, they are friends and they really didn't see any way out of their very complicated family and business matters.

But in the very first chapter, in quite an unconventional and terrifying way, Evan meets the love of his life, Sophia. Sophia also has some pretty strong electrifying feelings for Evan, that is until the truth of who he is totally crushes her.

How can Sophia, a wedding planner, plan the wedding of her career when she is in love with the groom? This makes for a heartbreaking dilemma with interesting conversations and actions. On top of that, there is a slight danger thread running through this novel as well. 

Both Evan and Sophia were characters I really rooted for. Evan was just really a great guy, a little misguided by nobleness at times, but he was one that Sophia knew was a treasure. She had very mixed feelings and I felt for her. And she was confused at the care and respect Evan had for everyone, including her, that she just couldn't hate him. What was going on? Many secrets needed unraveled.

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

USA TODAY Bestselling Author

Stop the Wedding!

Book 1: A Bridesmaid to Remember
Book 2: His Brother’s Bride
Book 3: A Marriage of Inconvenience

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Other Books in the Series

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About the Author


Amy Vastine has been plotting stories in her head for as long as she can remember. An eternal optimist, she studied social work, hoping to teach others how to find their silver lining. Now, she enjoys creating happily ever afters for all to read. Amy lives outside Chicago with her high school sweetheart husband, three teenagers who keep her on her toes, and their two sweet but mischievous pups.


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One winner will receive (US only):
- $25 Amazon gift card
- “I love you to the bookstore and back” book bag filled with several of my favorite Heartwarming books
- Blackwell Sisters cleaning cloth
- Bookmark

Three additional winners will receive an ebook of the first book in the Stop the Wedding Series, A Bridesmaid to Remember (open internationally)

Ends April 28, 2021

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Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Review: Stalling for Time by Christy Hayes

 

About:

Formerly published in 2013 under the title “A Kiss by Design,” this book has been extensively revised from the original. 

What’s a girl to do when her best friend is making a huge mistake? College sophomore Emily Dilbert has been best friends with Dylan Chamberlain since the second grade. When she finds an engagement ring in Dylan’s backpack, she panics and vows to do whatever it takes to stop him from marrying a girl he barely knows. 

Dylan Chamberlain has been in love with his brother’s girlfriend, Emily, since they were kids. When his brother asks for help planning a surprise proposal, Dylan knows it’s time to bury his feelings and finally let Emily go. If only his heart would cooperate. 

After her roommates fail to lure Dylan away from his girlfriend, Emily is forced to confront him directly. When she accidentally puts them in a compromising position, will Dylan reveal his long-buried feelings, or will Emily realize she’s dating the wrong brother?


My Thoughts:

Sometimes the love of your life has been with you the whole time, you just never noticed. That is exactly what happens to Emily when she discovers an engagement ring in her best friend's Dylan's backpack. How has he gotten so serious over his new girlfriend already, and why should she care so much since she is dating his older brother Zach?

But Emily's feelings have changed for Zach in a big way. She is beginning to see that their relationship is one sided, and she doesn't see herself happy with him anymore. And this nonsense with the ring and Dylan is eating her alive. She concocts a series of plans that in a comedy of errors backfire on her. Meanwhile Dylan has been in love with Emily forever, and that ring is certainly not what she thinks it is. And he is also tortured over all of this.

This is a new adult story that is pretty clean though I would definitely rate it on the PG13 scale as the tension between them sizzles. I really enjoyed this friends to lovers story. This is the second book that I have read in this series and I have been enjoying this group of roommates and their journey through college and life.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the author. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

Monday, April 19, 2021

Review, Guest Post, and Giveaway: Texas Trails by Caryl McAdoo

 



About the Book


Book: Texas Trails

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: March 6, 2021

The steps of a righteous man are guided by the Lord.

Rife with adventure, this rights-of-passage story comes to life as Enoch Lowell and his best friend Gus strike out to Kansas with their herd of beeves, hoping to earn a profit and cut the apron strings. What they find on the prairie changes their lives forever. Promises made, promises kept, but nowhere is it written there can’t be a happy ending for all. A true Texas trail tale to warm your heart!   

 

Click here to get your copy!


My Thoughts:

Mothers and sons, sons and mothers, a beautiful but at times a bittersweet relationship. Especially as the sons grown to be young men. That transition can prove rife with aggravation, worry, and sometimes bad feelings. Author McAdoo touches on this topic with two mothers and their sons, and the women their sons love. What a conundrum.

This story touched my heart and the author really wrote her heart out in this one. She gives us the perfect balance in showing the mothers and the sons point of views. The mothers having a hard time letting go and the sons wanting to move on, yet still honor their parents. And of course the young ladies who want to begin their lives, but must remember they may have sons one day who will grow up as well.

This topic is near and dear to me right now and it was a story that while I read it for review, helped me in my personal walk. To know that this is normal and that I am not alone. I enjoyed this continuing family story and the adventures of the cattle run these young people had. A great western.

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

About the Author


Award-winning author Caryl McAdoo prays her story brings God glory, and her best-selling stories—over fifty-five published—delight Christian readers around the world. The prolific writer also enjoys singing the new songs the Lord gives her; you may listen at YouTube. Sharing four children and nineteen grandsugars (three greats), Caryl and Ron (her high-school-sweetheart-husband of over fifty years) live in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas. The McAdoos wait expectantly for God to open the next door.

 

More from Caryl

Get along little doggie!

TEXAS TRAILS is the sixth novel in the Cross Timbers Family Saga series. I’d never written much about being on a cattle drive and thought it would be great fun. Back in the Texas Romance Family Saga series, Charley Nightingale made several trips to Kansas with a herd and took his son Nathaniel, but I skipped over the actual drive part.

Readers first met co-hero Enoch Lowell in QUINCY & PRISCILLA then got to know him better in DUPLICITY At The Lowell House when his best friend Gus Hale (TEXAS TRAIL’s other co-hero) is introduced. Both those stories are set in 1866. For TEXAS TRAILS, it’s three years later, and Enoch is ready to declare himself a man and start earning his own way. Driving a bunch of cows up to Kansas sounds like the ticket to cut his mother’s apron strings and earn some dollars in the process.

The son of Morgan and Charity O’Neal Lowell (LEAVING TEXAS, book four) and grandson of Liberty O’Neal Harrell (GONE TO TEXAS, book one) talks Gus into going with him, and as partners, they start building a herd. All the while, Charity is pitching a fit as her plan for her firstborn includes Harvard University.

One thing I loved about this story is that Morgan sets it up—behind the scenes of course—for trusted men to take in his son and Gus on their trail drive. Enters the infamous Texas Ranger Levi Baylor (Texas Romance Family Saga book two HEARTS STOLEN) and the boy he reared as his own (grown now), Charley Nightingale!

I already love those two men from my earlier Texas Romance Family Saga series—just as my readers do—and totally relished their appearance in this story! Revisiting old beloved friends brings great joy to this author, in real life and my fictitious world!! I adore crossing these characters over the two series!

So many things are apt to happen out on the prairie that cowboys never expect. There are rivers to cross and the natives to deal with, some who pose real danger to life and limbs! Cows birth calves, storms descend, and herds stampede, but that’s not all that can make a cowboy’s days rough. Enoch’s and Gus’s lives are definitely changed forever on the out there on the trail.

I’m thinking if I were a younger woman, I would totally enjoy going along on their cattle drive! How about you?

Blog Stops

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 7

Simple Harvest Reads, April 7 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Lakesidelivingsite, April 8

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 9

Connie’s History Classroom, April 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 11

deb’s Book Review, April 12

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, April 13

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 13

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 14

For Him and My Family, April 15

Texas Book-aholic, April 16

Inklings and notions, April 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 18

Splashes of Joy, April 19

Pause for Tales, April 19

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 20

 

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon Gift Card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/10a4b/texas-trails-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, April 12, 2021

Review: The Witness Tree by Denise Weimer

 

About:

To gain his wife, he must break her heart.

Past betrayal has turned John Kliest’s passion to his work as a builder and surveyor in the Moravian town of Salem, North Carolina. Now, to satisfy the elders’ edict and fulfill his mission in Cherokee Territory, he needs a bride. But the one woman qualified to record the Cherokee language longs for a future with his younger brother.

Clarissa Vogler’s dream of a life with Daniel Kliest is shattered when she is chosen by lot to marry his older brother and venture into the uncharted frontier. Can she learn to love this stoic man who is now her husband? Her survival hinges on being able to trust him—but they both harbor secrets.

My Thoughts:

This story was better than I expected. I read it within a day as I was so drawn into the the life of newlyweds Clarissa and John, their Moravian lifestyle, and their mission to the Cherokee Tribes. The cultures of the Moravians and the Cherokee could not have been more different and I liked how the author fleshed out the historical part.

Now the romance was something else as well. Clarissa wanted to marry Daniel, John's younger brother. However, John wanted to marry Clarissa and he needed a wife to go help with the mission. The elders agreed. Clarissa is not happy, though she is quite drawn to John and his dangerous vibe he gives off. These two have much to overcome, to become acquainted with one another, and to try to have a strong marriage. But as they are buffeted by many outside forces they both realize gifts they never had and a love that is worth sacrificing everything for.

This is a favorite for this year and definitely a reread. If you like authors like Laura Frantz and Lori Benton, then let author Denise Weimer take you on her wilderness adventure.

I purchased this book for my own reading pleasure. All views and opinions are my own.

Review: Sisters Ever After by Erin Stevenson

 

About:

Gianna Harper is living on borrowed time. Newly widowed, she’s struggling to hold things together at home and keep her business afloat while dealing with her late husband’s effects. But something’s not right, and now Gianna is convinced that he was involved in something a lot more sinister than shady business dealings.

Brock Hennessey fled California to make a fresh start in northwestern Montana. He hopes he’s put enough miles between him and danger, banking on a promised job to give his family a new start in a safe place.

Circumstances pit Gianna and Brock against one another, and neither one is willing to give an inch. As their professional dealings grow more acrimonious, their daughters become best friends and suddenly, the four of them are thrown into situations that have them acting, looking, and sounding like a real family.

Set against the stunning backdrop of northwestern Montana, Sisters Ever After is the first book in the Canadian Meadows series.

My Thoughts:

This cover is absolutely fantastic for the setting of this story and I think helps set up the story.

We are introduced to two people who have come from very difficult and uniquely challenging circumstances. Gianna is a recent widow whose husband, Greg, appears to have committed suicide. However, she is fighting to have that looked into as all of his finances and business dealings are tied up with the insurance company and there is no easy way to access them. Gianna is left holding the bag on his rentals and their upkeep as she is also trying to stay afloat with her salon. Not only trying to make ends meet, dealing with her grief, she also has a little girl, Paisley. 

Brock is on the run and going into hiding with his little girl, Piper, to keep her safe from her mother and his ex-wife. He has accepted a job from Greg, not knowing yet he has died. When Brock and Gianna first meet, it is filled with instant dislike and suspicion. They come to find out that they both need each other to help one another to get over these life hurdles and the new ones that are certainly coming their way.

I really enjoyed this story and it puts me in the mind of author Melissa Tagg and her books. I liked the setting and the similarities between Brock and Gianna and their little girls who when they meet become fast friends and hope to be family. Piper and Paisley were cute little girls who both have been through much and that gave them a little bit more maturity. Brock's back story is tragic and it made me very sad as it seems all too common. Gianna had her own past to deal with especially when it came to coming to terms with her past indiscretions and her relationship with her late husband. And the atmosphere of Montana was breathtaking.

I looked forward to more in this series from new to me author Stevenson.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the author through Interviews and Reviews. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Review and Giveaway: The Indebted Earl by Erica Vetsch

 


About:

Can Captain Wyvern keep his new marriage of convenience all business--or will it turn into something more?

Captain Charles Wyvern owes a great debt to the man who saved his life--especially since Major Richardson lost his own life in the process. The best way to honor that hero's dying wish is for Wyvern to escort the man's grieving fiancé and mother safely to a new cottage home by the sea. But along the way, he learns of another obligation that has fallen on his shoulders: his uncle has died and the captain is now the Earl of Rothwell.

When he and the ladies arrive at his new manor house in Devon, they discover an estate in need of a leader and a gaggle of girls, all wards of the former earl. War the new earl knows; young ladies and properties he does not. Still wishing to provide for the bereaved Lady Sophia Haverly, Charles proposes a marriage of convenience.

Sophie is surprised to find she isn't opposed to the idea. It will help her care for her betrothed's elderly mother, and she's already fallen in love with the wayward girls on the Rothwell estate. This alliance is a chance to repay the captain who has done so much for her care, as well as divert her attention from her grief. When Wyvern returns to his sea commission, she'll stay behind to oversee his property and wards.

It sounds so simple. Until the stalwart captain is arrested on suspicion of smuggling, and Sophie realizes how much he's come to mean to her. Now she'll have to learn to fight, not only for his freedom but also for his love.

Click here to read an excerpt.

My Thoughts:

So much to say about this story and the major one was the direction this story went with the characters. Charles is a man of the sea and he was grievously injured along with one of his men, Rich. He also experiences guilt that he lived and Rich did not especially since he blames himself for Rich's wounds.

Sophie is a young woman who has dreams of a life together with her fiancé, until the devastating news arrives that he has died. Now what is she to do? All her hopes and dreams have been broken. I felt for Sophie, a woman questioning the fairness of life and the goodness of God.

Charles and Sophie are a couple with a little bit of an age gap, Charles is a bit older than her. He is also a bit adrift due to his wound and the war being over and not having a ship to command. And then life makes him a guardian of three precocious girls and they keep him on his toes and he knows he needs help. So he and Sophie agree to a marriage of convenience to continue to care for Sophie's almost mother-in-law and and these three young ladies. I enjoyed this family of convenience that were put together not by birth or choice but by circumstances.

I also liked how Charles and Sophie "knew" each other through the letter writing that she and her fiancé did frequently. This was a true love's tale of moving on, making sacrifices, and learning to love one another and quite possibly have an amazing life and love story after all. Throw in danger and smuggling and you have a wonderful third book to a series that I have greatly enjoyed. Certainly ones for the keeper shelf.

I was provided a copy of this novel from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.

About the Author:


Erica Vetsch is a New York Times best-selling and ACFW Carol Award–winning author. She is a transplanted Kansan now living in Minnesota with her husband, who she claims is both her total opposite and soul mate. 

 
Vetsch loves Jesus, history, romance, and sports. When she’s not writing fiction, she’s planning her next trip to a history museum and cheering on her Kansas Jayhawks and New Zealand All Blacks.
 
A self-described history geek, she has been planning her first research trip to England.
 
Learn more about Erica Vetsch and her books at www.ericavetsch.com. She can also be found on Facebook (@EricaVetschAuthor)Instagram (@EricaVetsch) and Pinterest (Erica Vetsch).


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