Tuesday, April 30, 2024

My Thoughts and More on The Sleuth of Blackfriars Lane by Michelle Griep


About the Book


Book: The Sleuth of Blackfriars Lane

Author: Michelle Griep

Genre: Historical Christian Fiction

Release Date: April, 2024

Wife. Mother. Homemaker. Detective. Kit Forge wears many hats, and if that’s not enough, she’s partnered with her father to open a new detective agency. It’s hard to be all things to all people, but Kit never shies away from the impossible. Despite her hard work and good intentions, some things fall through the cracks.

Namely, her husband.

But Jackson barely notices. He’s too busy putting out his own fires. As the new chief inspector of a busy London station, he must salvage the disaster left behind by the former police chief—an obstacle made all the harder when the superintendent breathes an ultimatum down his neck.

Against her father’s advice, Kit takes on a case involving a missing child, one in which she and Jackson become a little too emotionally involved. . .and end up endangering their own little girl in the process.

Can Kit and Jackson learn that just because they can say yes doesn’t mean they should?


Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts:

I have really been enjoying this series and I am so glad that we get a whole book about Kit and Jackson and their baby girl, Bella, and how they are managing their lives. Especially now that Kit and her father have opened their own detective agency and along with this new venture, they do have some growing and trusting to do as father and daughter. Not only that, but Kit is especially wrestling with her role as a mother and a detective. The author shows Kit's feelings, doubts, and wavering's as most mothers are faced with these choices. Kit's first case is not helping matters in the self-doubt she is struggling with at all either.

Jackson is not having a real easy time of it either. His job is being threatened if he does not figure out the mess that the former police chief left. Paperwork upon paperwork needs to be sorted in two weeks' time, and the crime in the city will not slow down for even that. I did really like how supportive and protective Jackson was of Kit's endeavor outside the home, but he also was not going to put up with her endangering herself. It was a good balance of character for him, supportive yet reasonable.

We do get another love story with Inspector Charles Baggett and the widow Martha Jones and her seven children. I enjoyed their caring and banter with one another. If only they will open their eyes and see just how perfect they are for one another.

This story has is all, mystery, danger, family love, romance, and firm resolves and unbreakable wills. This one of my favorite series.

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

Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She is the Christy Award-winning author of historical romances: A Tale of Two Hearts, The Captured Bride, The Innkeeper’s Daughter, 12 Days at Bleakly Manor, The Captive Heart, Brentwood’s Ward, A Heart Deceived, and Gallimore, but also leaped the historical fence into the realm of contemporary with the zany romantic mystery Out of the Frying Pan.




More from Michelle

Oh Inspiration…Wherefore Art Thou?

There are several questions I am asked frequently as an author.

“Hey, how much money do you make?”

“Can you help me get my book published?”

“How come it takes you so long to finish a story?”

But probably the most common query is this: what sorts of things inspire you? Now that is a question I can go on and on about! Don’t panic, though. I’ll be brief.

Story ideas come from every place imaginable. I’ve had plot thoughts from watching kids’ movies or even from eavesdropping at a coffee shop (note: beware what you say in public). TV series are also a favorite of mine, so much so that my latest release, The Sleuth of Blackfriars Lane, is loosely based on one of my all-time favorite PBS series.

Have you seen this show? If not, do yourself a favor and ride that pony. If you have, then you know what I’m talking about. Either way, you should know that, the main character, is a detective in Victorian London—a very sassy yet classy lady. And that’s what struck me light a lightning bolt.

This woman is Kit, the heroine in my Blackfriars series, like right there on the big screen.

So, for book III, I decided I’d let ol’ Kit open her own private investigation agency with the help of her father, a recently retired police sergeant. Of course much intrigue and chaos ensues, just like in my all-time favorite PBS series, bringing the Blackfriars series to a satisfying end.

Inspiration honestly comes from anywhere, so next time you’re rubbing elbows with an author, beware. You just might end up as a character in their next book.

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 26

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 26

Book Looks by Lisa, April 26

Live. Love. Read., April 27

Vicky Sluiter, April 27

She Lives To Read, April 27

Texas Book-aholic, April 28

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 28

All-of-a-kind Mom, April 29

Where Faith and Books Meet, April 29

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 30

Sylvan Reads, April 30

Pause for Tales, April 30

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 1

Blogging With Carol, May 1

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 2

For Him and My Family, May 2

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, May 2

Betti Mace, May 3

Wishful Endings, May 3

Bizwings Book Blog, May 4

Daysong Reflections, May 4

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, May 5 (Author Interview)

Kristina Hall, May 5

Tell Tale Book Reviews, May 6

The Lofty Pages, May 6

Cover Lover Book Review, May 7

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, May 7

Blossoms and Blessings, May 7

Holly’s Book Corner, May 8

Back Porch Reads, May 8

Lily’s Corner, May 9

Life of Literature, May 9

Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 9


To celebrate her tour, Michelle is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon e-gift card and a print 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.


Wednesday, April 24, 2024

My Thoughts and More on Earning the Mountain Man's Trust by Misty M. Beller



About the Book


Book: Earning the Mountain Man’s Trust

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: April 9, 2024

In the wild mountains of the Montana Territory, the Coulter ranch is a place of family, second chances…and a hidden fortune.

Naomi Wyatt has finally given up on the man who once promised to love her for the rest of his life—then disappeared with no way to contact him. She’s now a single mother with a beautiful baby girl to provide for, a daughter whose red hair reminds her daily of the man she gave her heart to. She has to move on though, so when Jonah Coulter asks for her hand in marriage, she knows she would be hard-pressed to find a better husband for herself and father for her sweet daughter. He’s a Coulter, after all, and he’s proven to be a good friend during her darkest hours.

But when her first love rides onto the ranch property saying he’d been searching for her for months, her heart is shredded once again. Before she has time to catch her breath though, a new threat appears on the horizon. This time she has far more at stake than her heart, and only a Divine hand can turn this disaster for their good.

From a USA Today bestselling author comes a mountain family saga filled with a second chance romance, love triangles, hidden treasure, and love that heals wounded hearts.


Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts:

I have really been looking forward to this next addition in the Brothers of Sapphire Ranch series. I have been so curious about Naomi Wyatt's life, as she travels pregnant with her sister to the Coulter ranch. Who is her former beau, Eric LaGrange, and why hasn't he contacted her with any news? Well Naomi now has a little girl whom she needs to care for, and Jonah Coulter has asked for her hand in marriage. Naomi has said yes, if only to have a man to protect her and her little girl. Then Eric shows up at the ranch. Things get pretty interesting very fast.

Eric has been searching for Naomi for a long while. He has written to her, but she has never answered him back. He knows he did wrong with her taking liberties he shouldn't have before they were married, but he never expected she would leave him, or keep his child from him. But he is here now, and he will show Naomi, and everyone else that he will be a good father. If only he and Jonah will keep civil. Eric still loves Naomi, but he is willing to let her go and marry Jonah if that is what she wishes.

Naomi, even from the last book, was hesitant to marry Jonah, as she was still in love with Eric. But what happened to keep him from her? Plenty of danger and secrets unfold throughout this story until everyone has the answers they seek. This was a thrilling story of two good men and the drama that unfolds when the woman they both love needs to choose between them. Don't miss this exciting continuation.

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

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

Raised on a farm and surrounded by family, Misty developed her love for horses, history, and adventure. These days, her husband and children provide fresh adventure every day, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

Misty’s passion is to create inspiring Christian fiction infused with the grandeur of the mountains, writing historical romance that displays God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Sharing her stories with readers is a dream come true for Misty. She writes from her country home in South Carolina and escapes to the mountains any chance she gets.

More from Misty

Storytelling vs. Historical Authenticity?

I’ve been a fan of historical fiction for as long as I can remember, all the way back to the Mandie books by Lois Gladys Leppard and the Sadie Rose books by Hilda Stahl. Does anyone remember those series?


When I started thinking about my first novel, there was no doubt it would be a Christian Historical Romance set in the west. By my second book in, I had narrowed my focus to frontier life in the Rockies. My happy place!


It can be challenging to write about a time I haven’t experienced and cultures that don’t exist in the same form anymore. I love reading first-hand accounts to help me bring a particular time period to life. I often visit historic forts and talk with those who have studied the time period and setting in greater depth.


Three years ago, My family and I set out on a 28-day epic road trip to tour many of the state and national parks across the country. We spent about half of our time in Wyoming and Montana, exploring Yellowstone and Glacier, and tour historic and ghost towns. We spent more than one night tent camping in primitive camping!


These experiences definitely make it easy for me to slip into that world as I write. The characters come alive in my mind, and I see the story like a movie in my head. Writing Earning the Mountain Man’s Trust was especially fun to write, as we return to the Coulter Ranch. I fell in love with not just Naomi and Eric, but also sweet little Mary Ellen, their one-year-old daughter who Eric meets for the first time in this book.


I pray the story comes to life for readers as much as it has for me! J




Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions , April 23

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, April 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 24

Pause for Tales, April 24

Madi’s Musings, April 25

Alena Mentink, April 25

Devoted To Hope, April 26

Texas Book-aholic, April 26

Lighthouse Academy Blog, April 27 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 28

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 28

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, April 29

Wishful Endings, April 29

Life on Chickadee Lane, April 30

lakesidelivingsite, April 30

Cover Lover Book Review, April 30

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

Mary Hake, May 1

Books You Can Feel Good About, May 2

For Him and My Family, May 2

Book Looks by Lisa, May 3

Melissa’s Bookshelf, May 3

Betti Mace, May 4

Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 4

The Lofty Pages, May 5

Holly’s Book Corner, May 5

An Author’s Take, May 6

Blossoms and Blessings, May 6


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

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


My Thoughts and More on Streams of Courage by Sandra Merville Hart



About the Book

Book: Streams of Courage

Author: Sandra Merville Hart

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: March 26, 2024

In a world turned upside down by war and betrayal…will his role as a spy bring them closer…or tear their future apart?

The war that Julia Dodd prayed to avoid is now reality, and with it, her world has been turned on its head. Her fellow citizens, who stood with her in their support of the union, have crossed firmly to the side of the south. And her mother, lost in her grief over the loss of her husband and children, can think of nothing but protecting Julia’s brother’s inheritance. She insists that her daughter seek a wealthier husband than Ashburn Mitchell.

Ash knows what his fellow citizens think of him when he refuses to fight for the Confederacy. Shouldering the accusation of being a coward and refusing to hide behind his limp, Ash remains in Vicksburg to support his family as a saddler while his two best friends join the fight. Struggling to increase his business so he can marry the woman he loves, Ash becomes a spy in support of the Union. He can’t fight for the South but won’t raise a musket against them.

As tragedy instigates Ash to risk greater danger to speed the end of the war, Julia can only pray it won’t cost them everything. She’s already lost her father and two siblings. Must she lose the man she loves too?


Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts:

They live in dangerous time. War is imminent, their state of Mississippi has seceded from the Union and yet they side with the Union. Due to the amount of turmoil and hatred and mistrust that has spread, neighbor is rising against neighbor.

Julia Dodd is a young woman who has been praying for a peaceful solution between the North and the South. Now that they are at war, she must put on a brave face and continue on with her life, watching out for her little brother and fending off the wealthy suitors her mother has picked for her. Those that are left. Julia is in love with Ash whose social class is not quite what Julia's mother has in mind. Julia also finds out some heartbreaking news that makes her question her worth to her own family.

Ash is bound and determined not to join the Confederate army and fight for a cause he does not believe in. He also has a terrible limp, that for now will exclude him. However, he is looked at as an enemy by those left behind as he has made his views public in the past. Now he must act above reproach while he signs up to a dangerous mission for the North. He is now a spy. If he survives, he would like to marry Julia.

This story brought the turmoil of a breaking country right into the lives of those living in that time. This was just one city, in one state, and the distrust was palpable. This story moved rather quickly as these two watched as their world goes from bad to worse, and more hatred is spread. I appreciated the author showing these two characters stand up for what they believed in and doing something about it. All the while trying not to harm those against them. Their belief was strong enough for them to see this through.

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

Sandra Merville Hart, award-winning and Amazon bestselling author of inspirational historical romances, loves to discover little-known yet fascinating facts from American history to include in her stories. Her desire is to transport her readers back in time. She is also a blogger, speaker, and conference teacher.





More from Sandra

In Streams of Courage, Book 4 in my Spies of the Civil War Series, Julia, our heroine, has suffered several significant losses in her life, including her father and two siblings. Her mother’s insistence that Julia stop courting Ash, a saddler, and find instead a rich suitor makes no sense. Surely her father had provided for her.

Then she discovers that her parents have only provided for her younger brother, whom her mother had always adored. Julia will be penniless when her mother dies. The knowledge crushes her.

Ash is already supporting his mother and siblings. As Mama points out, adding a wife and children will stretch his income to the limits. Mama will not give her blessing should Ash propose. Julia, who had been raised in comfort, must find some means of support.

As I considered how Julia could make money in a war-time economy, it was clear her mother, as the daughter of a wealthy plantation owner, would never condone her working in a shop. What can she do?

Tatting lace.

Her lace patterns have received compliments in the past. With fewer ships bringing goods into the city, lace is in short supply. Granted, the demand for lace has diminished because even dress fabric isn’t as available as before the war.

I enjoyed researching this skill that was once so prevalent among young ladies in society. I watched videos on making lace with a special needle called a tatting needle.

The most basic stitch is the double-stitch. There is a special way to hold the needle and thread so that the first stitch grabs thread from under the thumb and the second stitch grabs it from over the thumb. There is a rhythm to the stitching in the hands of a skilled lacemaker.

I watched videos that demonstrated making rings with picot trim. There is a variety of stitching. The variations create beautiful patterns. The lace is then rolled for storage.

Fascinating. It’s mesmerizing to watch the different patterns emerge.

Tatting is a small yet interesting aspect in the adventurous story. Ash has become a Union spy. For her and her family’s safety, he keeps his dangerous activities a secret from Julia.

Part of my research for this novel and the next two novels included a trip to Vicksburg, Mississippi. I toured the museums and walked the streets of the historic city. Though I wasn’t certain of my story at the time of my visit, I was inspired by the history.

Avenue of Betrayal, Book 1, is set in the Union capital of Washington City (Washington DC) in 1861, where a surprising number of Confederate sympathizers and spies lived. Boulevard of Confusion and Byway to Danger are set in Richmond, the Confederate capital in 1862. Actual historical spies touch the lives of our fictional family.

Through both real and fictional characters, this series highlights activities spies were involved in and some of the motives behind their decisions.

I invite you to read the whole “Spies of the Civil War” series!

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 17

Alena Mentink, April 18

Connie’s History Classroom, April 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 19

Bizwings Book Blog, April 20

Holly’s Book Corner, April 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 21

Texas Book-aholic, April 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 23

Betti Mace, April 24

Pause for Tales, April 24

Cover Lover Book Review, April 25

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 26

Books You Can Feel Good About, April 27

Lights in a Dark World, April 27

For Him and My Family, April 28

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, April 29 (Author Interview)

The Lofty Pages, April 29

Blossoms and Blessings, April 30



To celebrate her tour, Sandra 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.

[Insert Giveaway Link Here]

Friday, April 19, 2024

My Thoughts and More on The Vanished by Cara Putman


The Vanished JustRead Takeover + Review Blitz

Welcome to the Takeover + Review Blitz for The Vanished by Cara Putman hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

The Vanished Title: The Vanished 
Series: Secrets to Keep #1 
Author: Cara Putman 
Publisher: Kregel Publications 
Release Date: April 16, 2024 
Genre: Christian Mystery & Suspense

Janae Simmons left the small town of Kedgewick, Virginia, ten years ago to pursue her legal career and never looked back--until a professional mistake leads her to her grandmother's historic carriage house and to the town where her past threatens to find her. The quiet streets echo with her grandfather's sterling reputation, one that conflicts with fresh questions that claw at Janae, launching her on a reluctant journey to unearth his secrets. When her new job at a local law firm doesn't live up to expectations, she wonders if coming home was the right decision.

Carter Montgomery starts his art preservation career with the only job he can get--director at the Elliott Museum of Art. At least Kedgewick is a nice enough town to provide him and his nephew with a safe place to grieve the loss of Carter's sister. But Carter's calm days disappear when an elderly woman claims two paintings in the museum's collection were stolen from her family during World War II. 

Carter enlists Janae's help to unravel the legal labyrinth of art ownership, and the peaceful facade of Kedgewick morphs into a hot bed of secrets. When an attorney turns up dead and Janae uncovers another painting, what began as a simple legal issue spirals into a race against time. As the web of intrigue tightens, the duo must confront a looming question: What dark truths lie beneath the surface, waiting to be exposed? 

"Putman's legal expertise shines in this compelling and intricately plotted romantic suspense. Highly recommended!" --Colleen Coble, USA Today best-selling author 

"Cara Putman has once again created an exciting cast of characters. I was immediately drawn in by Janae and Carter's unique chemistry. This is one story you don't want to miss." --Rebecca Hemlock, award-winning author of Fury in the Shadows

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Christianbook | Bookshop | BookBub

More Books in Series

We Three Kings

About the Author

Cara Putman

Cara Putman is the award-winning, best-selling author of more than thirty-five novels, including the Cornhusker Dreams series and the Hidden Justice series.

Connect with Cara by visiting caraputman.com to follow her on social media or subscribe to email newsletter updates.

My Thoughts:

I found this legal thriller to be very interesting as its main topic was about art. Especially the subject of when art has been questionably brought into a museum collection as it may have been stolen from the original owners during WWII. This is a subject I don't know a lot about, but I did find the legality of it all interesting and the author did a good job of explaining the making the complexities of the case understandable.

Janae Simmons has come back to her small-town home due to a mistake she made at her previous law firm. She is not sure of her life's direction anymore. She takes a position at the small town's law firm, but due to strange circumstances, things only go from bad to worse for Janae.

Carter Montgomery is the art museum director, and his museum is being accused of having a woman's stolen art, art that was stolen during WWII. She wants it back in her family's possession. He seeks legal help from Janae, a woman who needs the work and one he is attracted to.

I did not really know what to expect in this story, but stolen art is a big thing. Enough that other characters were acting peculiar. Throw in a possible murder, questionable characters, and bumps in the night and plenty of looking over your shoulder, and you have a well thought out suspense with a thread of romance.

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.

Tour Giveaway

(1) winner will receive a signed copy of the book, art-themed notebooks, and stickers that inspired the art stolen in the book!

The Vanished JustRead Giveaway

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight April 17, 2024 and lasts through 11:59 PM EST on April 24, 2024. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

Enter Giveaway

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

My Thoughts and More on The Garden Girls by Jessica R. Patch


The Garden Girls Blog Tour

Welcome to the Blog Tour for The Garden Girls by Jessica R. Patch, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

The Garden Girls

Title: The Garden Girls
Strange Crimes Unit: South Division
Jessica R. Patch
Harlequin Love Inspired Trade
Release Date:
April 23, 2024
Christian Psychological Thriller

On a remote Outer Banks island, a serial killer collects his prized specimens. And to stop him, an FBI agent must confront his own twisted past. 

FBI agent Tiberius Granger has seen his share of darkness. But a new case sets him on edge. It’s not just the macabre way both victims—found posed in front of lighthouses—are tattooed with flowers that match their names. There’s also the unsettling connection to the woman Ty once loved and to the shadowy cult they both risked everything to escape. 

Bexley Hemmingway’s sister has gone missing, and she’ll do anything to find her—including teaming up with Ty. That may prove a mistake, and not just because Ty doesn’t know he’s the father of her teenaged son. It seems the killer is taunting Ty, drawing everyone close to him into deeper danger. 

As the slashing winds and rain of a deadly hurricane approach the coast of North Carolina, the search leads Ty and Bex to an island that hides a grisly secret. But in his quest for the truth, Ty has ignored the fact that this time, he’s not just the hunter. Every move has been orchestrated by a killer into a perfect storm of terror, and they will need all their skills to survive…  

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | ChristianBook | Bookshop| BookBub

More Books In This Series

Her Darkest Secret

About the Author

Jessica R. Patch

Jessica R. Patch is a Publishers Weekly bestselling author known for her dry wit, signatures twists, and complex characters. She loves reading true crime books, discussing cold cases over chips and salsa with her girlfriends, and hunting down serial killers in her romantic suspense novels and psychological thrillers.

Jessica loves to encourage and inspire people to forward living devotionals through her monthly email newsletter. You can join the Patched In community at her website

She resides in the Memphis area with her husband and her spoiled tri-color Shetland Sheepdog since becoming empty nesters. Jessica is represented by Rachel Kent of Books & Such Literary Management

Connect with Jessica by visiting jessicarpatch.com to follow her on social media and sign up for email updates.

My Thoughts:

This was an unbelievably creepy story. The mad man behind the garden girls was one of the creepiest villains I have read in a while. Maybe ever. This is a race against time drama, as a mad man is playing with women's lives and FBI agent Tiberius Granger, Ty for short, and his team have made this personal. If you have watched the show Mentalist, which this story put me in the mind of, then you know what you are getting yourself into. If not, then be prepared for some scary stuff and don't read at night. 

There is a lot going on and to recap, without spoilers, Ty and his team is dealing with a lot. Not only are they dealing with a cunning and calculating madman, but a hurricane is on its way to the Outer Banks too. Ty's first love is in the center of what is going on since her sister has gone missing. This situation brings them together the for the first time in seventeen years. Bexley has been keeping secrets from Ty, and a big one for those seventeen years. He has a son he doesn't know about. They share a lot of history, especially the crazy cult they both were involved in when they were kids. Like I said, there is a lot going on.

With shocking twists and turns, we join with Ty's team as they try to hunt the madman and bring him to justice. But he seems to have a special dislike for Ty. Can Ty keep his team and his newfound family safe? 

The setting was ripe with tension, and a scary storm barreling down on them was not helping. We also get the viewpoints of one of the captured women, her terror brought on chills, but she was a fighter, so I was rooting for her.

Not only do we get her point of view but the madman's as well. What a lunatic and he was giving me some major horror vibes. On that note, for sensitive readers please be advised that some parts are very disturbing. 

There is a hope thread throughout the novel. I liked how the author showed the difference between a cult that pretended to follow the one true God verses those that were true believers. She did this all without preaching and it kept the story from being overly dark. Read during the daytime preferably.

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.

Tour Giveaway

(1) winner will win a signed paperback copy of Her Darkest Secret and A Cry in the Dark and a $25 Amazon card!

The Garden Girls JustRead Tours giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight April 15, 2024 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on April 22, 2024. Winners will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only for print. Ebooks available if winner is Canadian. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to JustRead Publicity Tours Giveaway Policies.

Enter Giveaway

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

Thursday, April 18, 2024

My Thoughts on The Lady with the Dark Hair by Erin Bartels



A charismatic man with a legacy that long outlives him

A forgotten woman whose fate is forever tied to his

And the family whose history is still being written


Toulouse, France--1879

Catalan orphan-turned-fugitive Viviana Torrens has found sanctuary serving in the home of an aging artist in Southern France. It is in his studio that she meets Francisco Vella, a Gibraltarian merchant who sells artists' pigments. When her past catches up to her, she is compelled to pose as Vella's sister and join him on his travels or be deported back to Spain to stand trial. A's long the way she will discover that the many parts she has been playing in order to hide her identity have far-reaching implications she never could have foreseen.

East Lansing, Michigan--Present Day

Esther Markstrom and her artist mother have always been proud of their ancestor, painter Francisco Vella. They even run a small museum and gallery dedicated to raising awareness of his scandalously underappreciated work. But when Esther reconnects with her former art history professor, she finds her once-solid family history on shaky ground as questions arise about Vella's greatest work--a portrait entitled The Lady with the Dark Hair.

This dual-timeline story from award-winning author Erin Bartels takes you on a captivating journey across time and continents, where past and present converge in a relentless search for truth, identity, and the freedom to follow one's dreams.

My Thoughts:

If you enjoy art, hidden identities, and finding out about your family history, then this book is for you. In this dual timeline, we have two women who are trapped in their circumstances. Beginning with 1879 and the current time, we see these two women's stories merge into quite a twisty tale.

Vivian Torrens, 1879, has lived a rough life. An orphan, brother dead, a servant looked down upon, and a woman, she really has no hope of a better life. But due to an incident, meant to harm, she becomes acquainted with a renowned artist, his wife, and a friend who is also a fellow painter. Through this association she begins to discover painting and a love for it. However, before she can get too comfortable, her heart is broken and other women's jealousies and vendettas sends the past that Vivian has been trying to hide from, roaring back for her. So, she must leave and change her identity again. But on her adventures, she meets some of the real-life Impressionist painters and the author gives artist Mary Cassat a voice in this story.

In the present-day Esther Markstrom is running an art museum in Michigan that is mostly dedicated to her famous ancestorial painter. Esther is an artist herself who often feels tied down as she must care for her mother, another artist, but a woman that is dealing with mental illness. Esther has become the mother instead. However, circumstances lead Esther on a hunt on who the mysterious woman with the dark hair who appears in many of the paintings done by her ancestor. What Esther discovers rocks her world. Main themes are identity- knowing yourself and your worth and a woman's role and limitations in culture, especially in the past.

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:

Erin Bartels writes character-driven fiction for curious people. Her readers know to expect that each of her novels will tell a unique story about fallible characters so tangible that it's hard to believe they are not real people. Whether urban, rural, or somewhere in between, her settings come alive with carefully crafted details that engage all the senses and transport the reader to a singular time and place. And her themes of reckoning with the past, improving the present, and looking with hope to the future leave her readers with a sense of peace and possibility.

Erin is the author of We Hope for Better Things, The Words between UsAll That We CarriedThe Girl Who Could Breathe Under Water, and Everything Is Just Beginning. A two-time Christy finalist and winner of two 2020 WFWA Star Awards and two Michigan Notable Book Awards, Erin has been a publishing professional for more than twenty years. After eighteen years in Lansing, Michigan, Erin and her family are busy enjoying the simple blessings of a less urban life in a small town outside the capital city.

You can find her online at ErinBartels.com, on Facebook @ErinBartelsAuthor, and on Instagram @erinbartelswrites.

My Thoughts on Love in Tandem by Becca Kinzer



She’s perfectly content leading a quiet life in her small hometown. He’s an adventurer with unquenchable wanderlust. The two couldn’t be any more opposite if they tried. But a tandem bicycle and a 500-mile road trip just might change all that.

After a failed engagement and her mother’s battle with cancer, Charlotte Carter’s life is finally turning around now that she’s landed a dream job teaching music. What she didn’t see coming was the imminent closure of the school’s music program. She’s determined to save it, even if it means getting creative. There’s no way she’s chalking this up as just another failure in her book of recent embarrassments.

Zach Bryant is back in town just long enough to see his brother Ben get married and then he’s off traveling the world again. He never imagined he’d run into Charlotte Carter, his brother’s ex-fiancé, or that everyone would believe he and Charlotte are an item. He certainly didn’t dream he’d end up riding a tandem bicycle hundreds of miles with her in an attempt to raise funds for a defunct music program, but how can he say no when the prize money would help him out of his financial predicament too?

Charlotte is sure she can set aside her differences with Zach long enough to cross the finish line and win the giant cash prize . . . can’t she? A few hundred miles in, she’s questioning her deeply held assumptions about Zach and wondering if maybe tandem biking is only the start of their biggest adventure yet.

My Thoughts:

It has been a while since I laughed out loud many times over a book and got strange looks from my cat, and this one broke my streak. This was a fun read about a couple of characters who get themselves into quite a conundrum due to a series of comical mishaps and miscommunications that, frankly, all started as a sweet gesture. These two are a little bit stubborn and hardheaded, so they do not choose the way out as a normal person would. No, they keep up the pretense. And thank goodness for that, as this was such a fun story to read.

Charlotte’s last day of school for summer break does not quite unfold the way she hoped. An avalanche of unbelievable mishaps and letdowns begin happening, and she is already facing a tough weekend ahead. Her ex-fiancé is getting married, two years after he broke off their wedding. Now everything else she hoped for in her future is going away as well.

Zach Bryant, the brother of Charlotte's ex-fiancé, has to come back for his brother’s wedding. Even though he would rather not since his brother is marrying his ex-girlfriend. But due to unforeseen circumstances, who should show up at the most inconvenient time, but Charlotte? Or maybe it’s serendipitous? And his fake relationship with Charlotte begins.

With comical adventures ahead of them and heartfelt feelings stirring, we get to go along with Zach and Charlotte on their tandem bicycle adventure as they find out that maybe things worked out the way they did for a reason. Throw in a secondary comical story with Charlotte’s sister, Sophia, and you have a story to lose yourself in for a while.

I was provided with a copy of this novel from Tyndale House Publishers through Interviews & Reviews. I was not required to post a positive review, and all views and opinions are my own.

My Thoughts and More on An Unlikely Arrangement by Cindy Patterson


An Unlikely Arrangement JustRead Blog Tour

Welcome to the Blog Tour for An Unlikely Arrangement by Cindy Patterson, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

An Unlikely Arrangement

Title: An Unlikely Arrangement
Brides of Biltmore #1
Cindy Patterson
Springbrook Press, LLC
Release Date:
March 11, 2024
Historical Romance, Christian, Clean & Wholesome

In 1902, Abigail Dupree is but a breath away from her grand societal failure. To save her family from humiliation and financial ruin, Abigail becomes a bargaining trade in her mother’s eyes. A bargain that will extinguish Abigail’s last hope of a happily-ever-after. If only she could return to the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina, she might have a chance to reunite with the only man who has the power to save her reputation. 

Garrett Barringer arrives in Charlotte, North Carolina to escape a past that no longer wants him. He takes an undisclosed position with Mr. Dupree. When it is revealed that part of Mr. Dupree’s purpose for bringing him on board is to chaperone his beloved daughter, Garrett abruptly discovers that he has taken on more than he bargained for. Abigail Dupree is more beguiling than any other woman he’s encountered, but he must resist his heart for the sake of propriety and to keep a promise made to her father. 

When her father hires Garrett Barringer, a man that seems far too young to be a lawyer, and possesses far too many favorable characteristics, Abigail resists his charm but cannot deny her heart is compelling her toward him. But she will not allow the man to ruin an opportunity she has waited for nearly five years. 

Garrett is suddenly aware what his life was and what it could become in the presence of Abigail Dupree. Will he be able to give up the woman who has stolen his heart, for her happiness? 

Abigail stands to lose all if Garrett Barringer sees past her physical beauty and uncovers the ugliness of her imperfect past. Will Abigail continue on the condemned path she’s fashioned for herself, or trust that God wants a future for her she never believed possible?  

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Bookshop| BookBub

About the Author

Cindy Patterson

Award-winning author Cindy Patterson believes in captivating romance and happy endings. In her stories, she loves to give glimpses of how God can use brokenness and make them whole. She reads a lot, drinks too much coffee, and wishes she had more time to write. Author of Chasing Paradise, Broken Butterfly, and Shattered Treasure, she loves to connect with her readers.

Connect with Cindy by visiting cindypattersonbks.com to follow her on social media and sign up for email updates.

My Thoughts:

Family secrets have a way of affecting our lives even when we know nothing of them. Abigail DuPree is a young woman with a scandal in her past that she is sure her mother is still punishing her for. Why else would her mother insist that she continue to entertain a man for a husband that she finds despicable and makes her skin crawl. Her father, though mostly on her side, still insists they allow her mother her whims. However, Abigail is most determined to not wed any man, unless it is the one whom she believes she loves from five years past.

Enter Garrett Barringer who is running from his past. He and Abigail bump into one another well before her father hires him to be her guardian. And Garrett feels especially protective of Abigail even though she can be quite frustrating with her biting tongue and her constant habit of going out and about without a chaperone.

All Garrett knows of the situation surrounding Abigail is the bits and pieces her father has told him. It is not much at first, her father is keeping many secrets close to his chest. As Garrett and Abigail continue to get to know one another, out of necessity and Garrett's job, they both come to the realization that maybe redemption from their pasts is possible, along with love for the future.

This book is a romantic read, between two unlikely characters. Garrett was full blown protective in some of the situations, which I liked. I was frustrated along with Abigail about her situation, especially since she was a woman and for that time women had much less freedom. I didn't understand her mother, or at times her father, when they seemed to ignore her very fearful feelings of the match she did not want. She was trapped and that made her situation all the more palpable to me as a reader. The mystery thread and the eventual setting of Biltmore moved the last half of this story quickly.

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.

Tour Giveaway

(2) winners will win a $25 Amazon Gift Card, a signed print copy of An Unlikely Arrangement and other book related gifts!

An Unlikely Arrangement JustRead Tours giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight April 16, 2024 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on April 23, 2024. Winners will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US/CAN only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to JustRead Publicity Tours Giveaway Policies.

Enter Giveaway

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

My Thoughts and More on The Lost and Found by Jennifer Carr


About the Book

Book: The Lost and Found

Author: Jennifer Carr

Genre: Christian Suspense

Release Date: June 1, 2023

In the small quiet town of Owenston, Kentucky, former FBI agent Mark Collins has found a new purpose as the county Sheriff. Married and enjoying the prospect of becoming a father for a second time, Mark’s life seems picture-perfect. But when a series of petty thefts turns into a murder investigation, Mark’s peaceful life takes an unexpected turn.

With his steadfast resolve and unwavering faith, Mark embarks on a race against time to catch a killer, but as he digs deeper, he realizes that the case is more complex than he ever imagined, and danger hits closer to home than he could have anticipated.

The Lost and Found is a Christian suspense novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat, blending thrilling intrigue with heartwarming moments. Mark’s unwavering commitment to justice, his ever-expanding family, and his unwavering faith in God make for a gripping tale of redemption, hope, and love. Can Mark untangle the web of secrets and find a way to heal the wounds of the past? Discover the truth in this captivating story of courage, compassion, and the power of love.


Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts:

Mark and Jess have many things to be thankful for. Starting off a new life and new family with each other along with Jess's little girl and looking forward to the new baby that is coming. Mark is settling into his new role as sheriff, and he is thankful every day for the second chances he has been given.

Jess is flourishing in her new town and marriage and is looking so forward to meeting her new little one, which she is about to pop with. She does still deal with grief and trauma over her late husband and his murder. The author does summarize those events in this book, but if you would like to know their story, No Matter What is the beginning. However, she is determined to continue on and focus on her family and a new charity project that will help those less fortunate.

Mark has been trying to track down who might be causing random and bizarre break ins in town, when he comes across a gruesome murder scene. Not something he expected in their small town. Now he knows that two young boys' lives are in danger, and he must find and protect them before the murderer gets to them first.

We get both of Jess and Mark's points of views as they both become entangled in this mystery and the boys' lives. This is novel that really focuses on family with a thread of mystery. I liked that the author showed Mark and Jess working together as a married couple should to get through the trials of life. It was refreshing to read about a normal married couple.

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

A wife, mom, author, marriage and family counselor, a former AP Psychology teacher, and a podcaster, Jennifer draws from her life experiences and imagination to connect with her readers and listeners through the written and spoken word.

Married to her childhood best friend and the mom of a creative daughter, Jennifer enjoys a quiet life on their farm in Alabama.
When she’s not wearing one of her many hats, you’ll find her tucked away with a book and what’s likely her third coffee of the day.




More from Jennifer

The Lost and Found is the second book of the No Matter What series but can be read as a standalone. I needed to make sure my characters were happy and healthy after their adventures in the book one so the day I sent No Matter What to my editor, I started writing The Lost and Found.

I love to bake and when I was pregnant with our daughter, I craved all things sweet. One of the characters in the book has a similar craving so I created a recipe for her to enjoy. I’d love to share it with you.


Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 17

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, April 18 (Author Interview)

Pause for Tales, April 18

Texas Book-aholic, April 19

Lakesidelivingsite, April 20

Artistic Nobody, April 21 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 23

Cover Lover Book Review, April 24

Beauty in the Binding, April 25 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 26

Blogging With Carol, April 27

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 28 (Author Interview)

Exploring the Written Word, April 28

For Him and My Family, April 29


To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving away the grand prize package of a Six Month Subscription to Kindle Unlimited ($60 value) 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.


My Thoughts and More on Mabel and the Little Green Men by Susan Kimmel Wright

  About the Book Book: Mabel and the Little Green Men Author:  Susan Kimmel Wright Genre: Cozy Mystery Release date: October 5, 2023 The la...