Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Jane Doe – A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book:  Jane Doe

Author: Lillian Duncan

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: June 26, 2020

A Broken Body. A Broken Mind. What If She Wasn’t The Last Victim?Jane Doe

Raven Marks survives a brutal kidnapping but just barely. Along with a broken body, her mind is broken. She wants to put the past behind her, but nightmarish memories won’t let her. . .At first because she doesn’t have them, and then because she does.

Even though her fractured memory can’t recall every detail, she’s haunted by one thought: What if she wasn’t the last victim? Her search for answers leads her to the highest politicians in the land. Each reclaimed memory brings her closer to the truth—and to even more danger.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

My Thoughts

Imagine being kidnapped, tortured, and then waking up with no memory of what happened. Raven Marks experienced this exact situation.  But we only die in God’s time and according to His plan, so she miraculously survives.  She then goes on to write a book about her experience and finds meaning for her life.

The suspense and danger in this book kept me reading.  I found I could not put it down.  This book illustrates how some politicians believe they are above the law and can do anything to anyone they want.  Yet this book illustrates how we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.  I loved the courage and determination Raven showed.  I also appreciated how Hunter was willing to do what it takes to keep Raven safe.  Additionally, Raven’s sister, Grace (at the rehabilitation home), Raven’s former editor all help bring the story to life.

The entire time I was reading I felt like I was part of the story.  I had to find out how the story ended.  I must say the ending did not disappoint.

So check this book out for yourself.

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

About the Author

Lillian Duncan… turning faith into fiction.

Lillian lives in a small town in Ohio with her husband. She writes the types of books she loves to read. Even though her books cross genres, they have one thing in common, faith-based stories that demonstrate God’s love—and lots of action. OK, that’s two things.

She was a school speech pathologist for over 30 years but retired in 2012 after being diagnosed with bilateral brain tumors due to Neurofibromatosis Type 2 (NF2), a rare genetic disease.

Whether as an educator, a writer, or a speech pathologist, she believes in the power of words to transform lives, especially God’s Word. To learn more about Lillian and her books, visit:www.lillianduncan.com.

 

More from Lillian

JANE DOE is my latest novel and it’s a doozy!

What’s the genre you ask? It’s suspense with lots of drama and action…but it also a political thriller…but it also has a lot of mystery components…but there’s the romance element as well… and let’s not forget the spiritual message! No matter what genre you classify it as, it’s one I think you’ll enjoy!

So how did JANE DOE come about?

I’d finished all my edits on a current book and was feeling very uninspired. I had no idea for my next story, so I went on FB and asked people to send me an idea for my next suspense novel. An old high school friend sent me the suggestion to write a story where the main character struggled with memory loss.

Mmmm… but the old amnesia plot has been done and it’s a big no-no that writing experts warn against. I took the challenge and wrote JANE DOE. It’s definitely not your typical amnesia plot, but the main character is haunted by her memories.

First, because she doesn’t have them and then because she does!

Raven Marks survives a brutal kidnapping but just barely. Along with a broken body, her mind is broken. Even though she can’t remember the details of her kidnapping, she’s haunted by the thought that someone else is being victimized by the kidnapper she can’t remember.

Her journey to discover the truth leads her to the highest politicians in the state and then the country. Each reclaimed memory brings her closer to the truth—and to even more danger.

I’m not going to give away the plot, but there’s plenty of twists and turns to keep you reading late into the night!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 1

Ashley’s Bookshelf, July 1

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 2

Just the Write Escape, July 3

By The Book, July 4 (Author Interview)

Blogging With Carol, July 4

Inklings and notions, July 5

Betti Mace, July 6

Andrea Christenson, July 7 (Author Interview)

Hebrews 12 Endurance, July 7

For Him and My Family, July 8

Texas Book-aholic, July 9

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, July 10

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 11

For the Love of Literature, July 12 (Author Interview)

Bigreadersite, July 12

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

deb’s Book Review, July 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Lillian 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/fd8f/jane-doe-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in 2020 Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Language Arts, Literature

Little Women Study Guide High School Grades 8-12 – A Progeny Press Review

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Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

 

Progeny Press makes earning High School Literature credit easy with high school level study guides such as Little Women Study Guide.  Our family has used other study guides from this company and I am always pleased with their products.  For this review we received the downloadable interactive guide for the student as well as the answer key.  With just a click of a couple of buttons I was able to download both products and then save them to my computer.  With a copy of the book Little Women, we were ready to get started.
Progeny Press offers products from elementary school through high school from a Christian perspective, which is important to our family.  The convenience of being able to use the interactive study guides without having to print anything provides a way of eliminating the paper overload we often find ourselves in at times.  It also means our family does not have to worry about pages getting lost or damaged.  At the same time, we are able to print out completed pages if we wish to save them in a notebook.
Additional Student Pages
Little Women was one of my favorite books growing up so I was anxious for our daughter to read it and complete this guide.  I felt like we would have a lot to talk about considering my husband serves in the military and is an ordained minister.
The study guides offer vocabulary, short answer questions, more in-depth questions, and even some crossword puzzles and more.  I love how the amount of details required to answer different questions varies.  The study guides are straight-forward as far as the questions given.
In addition to the questions, some literary terms are also provided with explanations, so students can then answer questions relating to the term.  For example, one of the questions relates to foreshadowing.  It gives the students an explanation of what foreshadowing is and then an example for students to read and then explain about what they see in the excerpt.
Little Women Completed Pages
In addition to the normal activities you would expect to find in a literature guide, optional activities such as arts, letter writing, natural science, and even cooking are included as well.  While this study guide is perfect to do with a single child such as our daughter, I think it would be interesting to do this guide with several children of similar ages at the same time.  Because this guide is designed for grades 8 – 12, a family with a middle school student as well as some high school students could easily use this guide together as a family.
The Answer Key provides answers for the questions as well as indications of when the answers may vary based on the student. Here are some sample pages.
Answer Key Pages
I know from my own high school experience, I typically enjoyed working in small groups on assignments.  At the same time, parents or grandparents could do this study guide with the student to create additional learning experiences.
For a number of years my mother has lived with us, and she always enjoys doing school work with the children.  She feels it help with her memory.
You can find Progeny Press on social media at the following links:
So if you are looking for literature guides for your children in elementary school to high school, check out Progeny Press and their high school level study guides such as Little Women Study Guide.  I believe your family will enjoy them.
Other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their thoughts on this study guide as well as others this week.  So click here or on the graphic below to go read more reviews of Progeny Press’ products.
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#hsreviews #progenypress #literature #reading #learnathome #readingcomprehension
Posted in 2020 Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Reading

MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software – A Review

 

 

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

My daughter has been working on reading comprehension through MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software from MaxScholar.  My goal was for her to use the program at least 3 days a week.  Offering MaxReading, MaxPhonics, MaxWords, MaxPlaces, MaxBios, MaxMusic, and MaxVocab.  In preparation for taking the SAT, I wanted her to brush up on her reading comprehension skills as well as her vocabulary skills.  So we concentrated primarily on MaxReading, and MaxVocab.

Although she does not have any learning disabilities, I am reviewing this program because when our second son was in the second grade, we were concerned he may suffer from dyslexia.  At the time, he attended a public school, so we were surrounded by teachers who offered assistance and direction for our family. So I felt like it was important for our family to review this online program.

Primarily designed for students with learning disabilities, this program incorporates a multisensory approach to conveying the instructional information.   Bundled together with the program provides a variety of activities working on phonics, reading comprehension, vocabulary, music, 51 places to study, as well as nteresting biographical studies.  Using a multistep approach, students have the opportunity to demonstrate what they already know in order to know what they need to work on at the beginning.

This online program offers a systematic approach that allows students in grades Pre-K thru 12 to work at their own pace and level.  When our daughter took the placement test, we found she was at the 12th-grade level.

One of the features I really appreciated was the ability of a parent to decide what I wanted to require our daughter to do.  For example, in the MaxReading, I was able to determine if our daughter was going to be required to take the placement test, do highlighting, and more.

Our daughter found the reading activities to be fairly straight-forward.  However, we both wished that some parts better instructions as well as examples had been provided.  At 17-years-old, she is fairly intuitive and able to figure things out for herself.  Younger children or ones with disabilities may require additional parental assistance.

As students complete activities, they are provided with immediate feedback either immediately following the completion of an activity or as they complete each question or a set of questions.

With the parent login, parents have the ability to monitor progress, print out resource materials. look at lesson plans, assign students levels, and more.  I feel this would be extremely useful for younger children or ones that need monitoring.  In our daughter’s case, because of her age  and level of responsibility, I basically allowed her to work at her own pace and inform me of what

 

You can find MaxScholar on Social Media at the following links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MaxScholarLLC/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MaxScholarLLC
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/maxscholarsoftware/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/MaxScholarLLC/pins/

So if you are looking for reading tutoring online, or have students with dyslexia, or other learning disabilities, check out this program for yourself. I feel Families can work on reading comprehension through MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software from MaxScholar.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their thoughts on this online learning experience today.  So click here or on the graphic below to check out their reviews.

 

#hsreviews #ortongillingham #onlinesoftware #onlinetutoring #MaxScholar #dyslexia #distancelearning #homeschool #ortongillinghamtraining #readingcomprehension

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for His Pretend Amish Bride

His Pretend Amish Bride FB BannerAbout the Book

Book:  His Pretend Amish Bride

Author: Rachel J. Good

Genre:  Amish Romance

Release Date: June 30, 2020

his pretend Amish brideIn a small Amish town like Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania, one solution to an indiscretion is to get married. Or perhaps, fake a respectable engagement . . .
 
Priscilla Ebersol has a fulfilling life teaching special needs children—until her boyfriend’s humiliating betrayal ruins her reputation and threatens her job. Shunned for something she didn’t do, Priscilla throws herself into a project on the benefits of camel’s milk for autism. Her research leads her to a newly opened Amish camel farm, where she discovers far more than she bargained for. . .

When a pushy Englisch company shows interest in shy, handsome Gabriel Kauffman’s camel farm, he struggles to get out of a sticky negotiation. Lovely, well-spoken Priscilla appears at the perfect moment and defends Gabe’s business so well that she is mistaken for his wife, a pretense they both secretly wish could be true. But though their bond deepens, Priscilla’s heart is still wounded, and Gabe battles with a troubling secret. And when a misunderstanding comes between them, it will take faith, honesty, and trust in God to overcome the past—and to allow their partnership to blossom into something more.

 

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

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Have you ever thought you were in love with someone only to find out he or she was not who you thought he or she was?  Priscilla believed Matthew was the man she would marry.  Only he betrays her in the worst possible way, and it leaves her life in shambles.  However, sometimes when things look the darkest, God lets true light shine in on us.

Gabriel Kaufman has come to Priscilla’s community to open a camel milk farm.  I love his nephew Timothy and the wonderful way Timothy helps his uncle.  When an Englischer and his wife become determined to buy the farm, Gabriel finds himself in a fight for his very livelihood.  I have known people who find it difficult to speak in public, so I could appreciate Gabriel’s difficulty and fear of speaking in front of large groups of people. I also appreciate how Priscila steps in to help Gabriel.

One thing I found very believable in this story was how some people in Priscilla’s community were quick to believe Priscilla’s innocence, while others were quick to offer judgment against her.

This book shows how the Amish can work together with Englischers to benefit everyone. Alyssa is a reporter who comes to do a story on the camel farm but winds up finding her faith in God restored as well as helping to save the farm.  Her willingness to listen made me respect her.

So if you like Amish stories that illustrate forgiveness, faith, family, and love, check out this book for yourself.  It truly shows how sometimes you can find the one God intended for you without even trying.

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

 

About the Author

rachel_headshotUSA Today bestselling author RACHEL J. GOOD writes life-changing, heart-tugging novels of faith, hope, and forgiveness. She grew up near Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the setting for her Amish novels. Striving to be as authentic as possible, she spends time with her Amish friends, doing chores on their farm and attending family events.

Rachel is the author of several Amish series in print or forthcoming – the bestselling Love & PromisesSisters & FriendsUnexpected Amish BlessingsSurprised by Love (2021), and two books in Hearts of Amish Country – as well as the Amish Quilts Coloring Books. In addition, she has stories in many anthologies, including Love’s Thankful Heart, Love’s Christmas Blessings, Plain Everyday HeroesLove’s Truest Hope, and the forthcoming Amish Christmas Twins (September 2020) with Shelley Shepard Gray and Loree Lough. She is also the coauthor of the Prayerful Author Journey: Inspirational Yearly Planner.

 

More from Rachel

A few years ago, I passed Amish camel farm in Bird-in-Hand, PA. As an author, seeing anything new or different always piques my interest, so I went for a visit. Not only did I explore the farm and store, I bought camel’s milk to drink. I think it’s important to do in-depth research for the settings and information I include in my Amish novels.

 

I was fascinated to discover camels usually bond to one milker, only give a little milk each day, and are extremely expensive to buy. All of those are reasons why camel’s milk is so expensive. It costs $15 for a pint. Much pricier than cow’s milk.

 

And if you’re wondering how camel’s milk tastes, the best way I can think of to describe it is a slightly salty version of powdered milk. It’s more watery than cow’s milk.

 

Because I grew up drinking powdered milk during my early childhood years when we lived in Africa, I’d always vowed never again to drink it once we moved back to the United States. A vow I’ve kept. That was never a problem living in Pennsylvania, where there’s plenty of farmland, cow, and Amish, of course.

 

The camel’s milk was enough like powdered milk to make me gag. But because I want to be sure my books are authentic, I drank it. So, readers, now you know how much a I care about you.

 

My concern for you also extends to more than just getting factual information correct. I pray for each and every one of you as I write my stories. I hope that they will touch your heart and bring you closer to God.

Blog Stops

Through the Lens of Scripture, June 29

The Avid Reader, June 29

Among the Reads, June 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 30

Texas Book-aholic, July 1

Blogging With Carol, July 1

Inklings and notions, July 2

Batya’s Bits, July 2

She Lives To Read, July 3

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, July 3

Splashes of Joy, July 4

reviewingbooksplusmore, July 4

For Him and My Family, July 5

Books, Life, and Christ, July 5

For the Love of Literature, July 6

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, July 6

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 7

deb’s Book Review, July 7

Blossoms and Blessings, July 7

Older & Smarter?, July 8

Jeanette’s Thoughts, July 8

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, July 8

Reading Is My SuperPower, July 9

Bigreadersite, July 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 10

Maureen’s Musings, July 10

Pause for Tales, July 11

Lighthouse Academy Blog, July 11 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Artistic Nobody, July 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Vicky Sluiter, July 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of the book and $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/fcda/his-pretend-amish-bride-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Crystal Witness – A Review and Giveaway

Crystal Witness FB Banner

About the Book

Book:  Crystal Witness

Author: Kathy Tyers

Genre:  Christian fiction, science fiction, futuristic

Release Date: June 16, 2020

Tyers - Crystal WitnessHer memories are blocked. Her freedom is gone. Her crime is a mystery.

When Ming Dalamani awakens from twenty years of suspended animation, she recalls only fragments of her former life: the life she led before she was arrested by the governing interplanetary corporation, Renasco, for a now unremembered crime.

Relocated to an alien world far from the only home she has ever known, Ming serves a powerful Renasco representative to repay her debt. But daily she lives with deadly threats from two men—the hideous mutant Zardir Huekk and the handsome, secretive musician Tieg Innig—who both want the same thing: information. Renasco-trained as a calligrapher in three dimensions, Ming begins to remember more: a clan, a mission, and interstellar piracy.

Ming must decide where her loyalties lie: with her powerful new employer, with a budding resistance movement… or elsewhere.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

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This fantasy novel was one I was looking forward to reading.  However, I had a hard time getting into the storyline.  It starts out with a scene but then jumps to the future without a clear trail that I could follow.

While I found some parts of the book interesting, because of the number of characters and the way the story jumped around I sometimes had a hard time following it.  We are introduced in the prologue to Ming as she and her family are making a smuggling run.  But then the book jumps 20 years in the future and Ming has had her mind wiped and has been sent to a new home by RENASCO, to be a calligrapher and artisit.

I enjoyed reading the parts about Ming’s artistic endeavors as well as the music of Tieg Innig.  The friendship that seems to develop the two caputred my attention.

So if you like fantasy books, check out this book for yourself.

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

 

 

 

About the Author

Kathy-20b (1)Kathy Tyers is widely published in speculative fiction, including her award-winning Firebird series and two licensed Star Wars “Legends” novels, as well as a travel book, a writing reference book, and a memoir co-written for classical guitarist Christopher Parkening. Her messiah-in-space novel Daystar, fifth in the Firebird series, won a 2013 Carol Award, and her terraforming/genetic engineering science fiction novel Shivering World won the 2019 Christy Award for Visionary Fiction. At home in southwest Montana with her husband William Gillin, Kathy focuses on writing, teaching music, and freelance editing.

 

 

 

More from Kathy

In 1988, after the initial release of Firebird and Fusion Fire by Bantam Books of New York, my then-editor asked for a stand-alone novel, and my then-agent presented me with a contract to write that book in just over half the time that I actually needed. So my third novel, Crystal Witness, appeared in 1989—and while the plot had strong bones, I wished I’d had several more months to polish it. Much to my delight, Enclave Publishing is re-issuing Crystal Witness in June 2020 with the layers of polishing added. While I was adding those layers, I found myself wondering what would happen next. Maybe … oh, yes … hmmm … Aha!
Now that Crystal Witness is ready to stand up and sing, I am delighted to be working on a multi-book sequel series, The Sunstone Saga, also to be released by Enclave Publishing. Book 1 of the saga, The Long Silence, is well underway. It introduces a new cast of characters and asks a powerful question: Where has God been, while humankind went to the stars?
Crystal Witness is the story of young Ming Dalamani, who wakens from twenty years of suspended animation to find herself “company property” on a distant world, with no memory of the crime she must have committed. She only knows that a powerful corporate monopoly rules interstellar space, and she has been assigned to serve a company representative. Immediately, powerful (and opposing) individuals offer threats and bribes, trying to enlist her to spy for both sides of a deadly intrigue. How long can Ming play both sides of the plot against her urgent wish to find out who she is … and what was her crime?
My background in music and the arts always manages to show up in my books. I made Ming a calligrapher in three dimensions, wielding a set of injection pens to create elegant designs in clear slabs. Another character is a court musician with futuristic technology at his fingertips. My entire family was musical; my mother played in 20thCentury Fox’s prestigious sound stage orchestra in the 1950s, and my father grew up in a family band that toured the U.S. every summer. When I was widowed in 2004 and needed to make a fresh start, I discovered that Regent College in Vancouver BC had a program in which I could study toward a Master’s degree in Christianity and the Arts—and write a science fiction novel as part of my thesis project. That book, Wind and Shadow, picked up the Firebird series at Book 4 and led to its completion in Daystar, Book 5. That series is conclusively finished—as you know, if you have read Daystar!

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kathy is giving away the grand prize package of a still-in-box set of miniature toys that was released in 1996 to go with her novel, Star Wars: The Truce At Bakura, a signed copy of Firebird and One Mind’s Eye!!

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/fcdb/crystal-witness-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

A River Beautiful – A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book:  The River Beautiful

Author: Andrea Carmen

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: May 26, 2020

A difficult past. A strange letter. An unsolved mystery.The River Beautiful final

Someone is following Lena, mapping her every move.

Where strength can be weakness and vulnerability-an asset, the greatest danger that threatens Lena may just be herself.

After the death of her father years ago, Lena ran from the quiet community of Kennerdell, but she’s back, forced to face a past she’d rather forget.

To make things more difficult, awkward, and terrifying, her old friend, Will, is back in her life. Even worse, she needs him there if she hopes to figure out what the letter she found in her father’s study means. They’re on a mission to find answers before her stalker does.

The River Beautiful mingles history and legend in a fast-paced ride through the deceptively peaceful Allegheny Mountains on a quest for answers amid loss, strength in the face of love, a whirlwind of self-discovery, and learning to use faith to illuminate even the darkest places.

 

Click here to get your copy!

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Imagine being an adult and believing your father died in an accident.  Then imagine several years pass and you have to go home to tell your mother that you have dropped out of college.

This book really illustrates the strength and power of God’s love for us, His children, through the love and forgiveness that Lena’s mother shows for her time and time again.

Another part I enjoyed about this story comes from how Lena and Will, her best friend growing up, move from friendship to love.  I also appreciated how the book ends on a solid note that left me feeling as though the book was complete.

Complete with danger and suspense this book kept me involved until I read the last page.   I felt the characters were well-developed and interesting.  Plus, the storyline moved at a good pace.

If you have ever made mistakes in your life, this book is a good one to read.  So check it out for yourself.

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

 

About the Author

Andrea Carmen enjoys writing Romantic Suspense and Sweet Romance from a Christian perspective. A lover of bygone times, her modern-day novels contain a spark of history, a hint of mystery, or a little bit of both. Andrea finds inspiration by getting outdoors every chance she gets to explore and enjoy nature, but her favorite pastime is spending time with her family and best canine friend, Zoey.

 

 

 

 

More from Andrea

The River Beautiful is my first novel. The story means so much to me, and I am so happy to finally share it with you all.

This book has been years in the making and covers so many topics that are important to me. Many of them were fun to write about, but a few were hard to deal with at times.

Three elements stand out to me when I think of Lena’s story:

Love, Loss, and Legend.

Love- Love is a beautiful gift. In fact, I would say it is the most precious gift God ever gave us. Love, in its correct form, is free, unconditional, and the basis our salvation. God’s love for us cannot be altered or blocked by darkness, not even the paralyzing darkness of grief. So, when love comes into play in this story, it comes from that perspective. Lena struggles to accept love, but I think that is a place many of us have been at one time or another.

Loss can be lifechanging and usually not for the better. To turn The River Beautiful into the story it is, I had to bring up emotions from my own experiences with grief. Churning up those feelings after I’d had them tucked away for so long resulted in many tearful typing sessions. But at the end of the day, I think it brought unexpected healing and a level of authenticity to the story that it would not have had otherwise.

Legend- Researching the legends of the Lenni Lenape people was enlightening. I have always felt a connection to history and the past intrigues me so that I could not help but bring in some element of mystery from the area’s indigenous inhabitants. My usual go-to when it comes to history tends to be Early American and European, but for this project I was able to bring in a blend of all three for a fictional retelling of key events—and that was exciting!

By combining the elements of Love, Loss, and Legend, I hope I have created a story that not only entertains but moves readers as well. And I hope you love it!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, June 25

Reading Is My SuperPower, June 26

For the Love of Literature, June 27 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, June 27

Just the Write Escape, June 28

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 29

Texas Book-aholic, June 30

A Baker’s Perspective, July 1 (Author Interview)

April Hayman, Author, July 1

Inklings and notions, July 2

For Him and My Family, July 3

Vicky Sluiter, July 4 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 5

Betti Mace, July 6

Book Love, July 7 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

deb’s Book Review, July 8

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Andrea is giving away the grand prize of a $75 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/fcd7/the-river-beautiful-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for Cleansed by Death

About the Book

Book:  Cleansed by Death

Author: Catherine Finger

Genre: Thriller/Suspense/Mystery

Release Date: June 2016

Haunted by an evil presence she can’t quite grasp, Police Chief Josie Oliver finds herself drawn into the crosshairs of a vicious serial killer. Fighting for her marriage, faith, and fate, Chief Josie is confronted by an Adversary that only God can conquer–if she decides to let Him in.

 

 

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

 

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Cleansed by Death is the start of the story of Jo Oliver and all of the people who surround her. Being the first book in the series, I was interested in seeing how the story would come to life. I was looking forward to reading this book because I typically enjoy suspense novels. I found myself riveted as I continued reading. I thoroughly enjoyed this book from start to finish.
This book contains domestic abuse, something I would not think of a police chief falling prey to typically. The characters seem to have a depth to them that I enjoyed. I became caught up in this world the author created.  I wanted to see how the story would end.
I felt caught up in seeing how Jo was willing to fight for her faith, marriage, and even her own life. So if you enjoy suspense novels, check this book out for yourself.

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

 

 

About the Author

Catherine Finger loves to dream, write, and tell stories. Recently retired from a wonderful career in public education, she celebrates the ability to choose how to spend her time in a new way during the second half of life. So far, she chooses to write books, ride horses, serve others, and generally find her way into and out of trouble both on the road and at home.  She lives in the Midwest with a warm and wonderful combination of family and friends.

Capsized by Death, the fourth novel in her Jo Oliver Thriller series, was released by Elk Lake Publishing in December, 2019. Anchored by Death, the third of her Jo Oliver novels, was a Bronze Medal winner at the 2018 Independent Publisher Book Awards; a 2018 Selah Awards finalist; and a finalist for the National Indie Excellence Awards. Her second Jo Oliver Thriller, Shattered by Death, was a finalist in the International Book Awards and the National Indie Excellence Awards. Catherine and her novels have been featured on radio stations, blogs, and in numerous articles—all posted at www.CatherineFinger.com.

Catherine loves to interact with her readers at www.CatherineFinger.com Follow her on Facebook at Catherine Finger, Author, and on Twitter at CatherineFinger@BeJoOliver.

 

 

More from Catherine

Welcome to our Jo Oliver Thriller series Celebrate Lit Tour!

 

Cleansed by Death, the first book in the series of four novels, began with an idea to write a book about strong women struggling with life, love, and loss while embedded in traditional male roles. I wanted to show real women dealing with difficult internal and external struggles and create tension for my readers. Playing with the question of whether such challenges make our characters better—or bitter—added depth and twists to my story.

It took a long time to get this story to the point of releasing it into the world. I stopped writing it twice, shelving it for about a year each time. Every summer as I percolated over the story, I read it cover to cover and realized I still loved both the voice and the bones of the story. Adding the faith piece in a way that felt authentic and edgy was the frosting on the cake and it happened as a half vision, half spiritual warfare experience in Jo Oliver’s head and heart. This experience developed her unique brand of conversation with God as she understands Him and added a spiritual dimension to my stories.

 

My Midwestern roots showed themselves with reckless abandon in this debut—becoming a cornerstone of future installments. As I write this kick-off note to you, I sit in front of my computer facing a wilderness scene that features prominently in this story. Writing in the midst of the corona virus leads me back to some of my favorite places for comfort—the woods and lakes of Wisconsin.

 

Enjoy the read!

 

 

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, June 27

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 28

Blogging With Carol, June 28

Texas Book-aholic, June 29

Through the Fire Blogs, June 30

Bigreadersite, June 30

Betti Mace, July 1

Godly Book Reviews, July 1

For the Love of Literature, July 2

Older & Smarter?, July 3

Emily Yager, July 3

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 4

Daysong Reflections, July 5

deb’s Book Review, July 5

Inklings and notions, July 6

For Him and My Family, July 7

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, July 7

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 8

Pause for Tales, July 9

Lights in a Dark World, July 10

Ashley’s Bookshelf, July 10

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Catherine 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/fcd9/cleansed-by-death-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for I AM

About the Book

Book:  I AM

Author: Diane Stortz

Genre:  Juvenile nonfiction, Bible stories

Release Date: 2016

Creator, Comforter, Healer, Friend. God’s names tell us who He is, what He is like, and what He does. This beautiful book covers 40 of the Bible’s many names and descriptive titles for God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, including Jehovah Jireh, The Lord My Shepherd, Immanuel, Rabbi, and I AM.
Through Bible stories, short devotions, and prayers, children discover the meaning of each name and how it relates to their lives. As they develop understanding of God’s character and His love for them, children will grow to know, love, and trust the great I AM more and more.
“Those who know your name put their trust in you.” –Psalm 9:10

 

 

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

I Am is a beautifully illustrated book for children. Each of the forty entries includes passages of Scripture, stories from the Bible, prayers, as ell as suggestions for learning more. This book would be an excellent book for reading with children in your life.

I think one of my favorite parts of this book is the illustrations.  With the bright and vibrant colors, the pictures help bring the stories to life.  I think these illustrations will help capture the attention and imagination of the children while reading this book’s devotions.  When our children were younger, I always looked for ones with excellent illustrations in them.

It explains who God is and why we should trust Him. So if you are looking for a devotional book for children in your life, check this book out for yourself.

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

 

About the Author

Diane Stortz is a multipublished author who writes to make God’s wonders known to the next generation. Her children’s releases include the best-selling Say & Pray Bible and I AM: 40 Reasons to Trust God, both from Tommy Nelson. Diane’s books for women, A Woman’s Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year and Encountering God’s Heart for You, both from Bethany House, encourage women to get to know God through His Word, the Bible. Diane and her husband have two married daughters and five grandchildren—all boys! Visit her at www.DianeStortz.com.

 

 

More from Diane

You can often guess someone’s age by considering their name. Diane, for example, was popular in the 1950s, so . . . that tells you something about me.

But God’s personal name? Well, it’s ageless. Just like Him.

When Moses met God at the burning bush and received the task of leading the Israelites out of Egypt, he wasn’t exactly thrilled at first. He peppered God with questions, including, “When I tell the people that I met you here and you gave me this assignment, they’re going to want to know your name. What should I tell them?”

The Israelites had just about forgotten who the God of their fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was.

But God hadn’t forgotten them. Not at all. God told Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. . . . Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you’” (Exodus 3:14).

I AM WHO I AM. I always have been. I will always be. I will never change.

Choosing a book title is rarely easy, and choosing a title for this book about the names of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit took a long time. I couldn’t be more grateful to the Tommy Nelson publishing team who developed and settled on the title I AM: 40 Reasons to Trust God.

My prayer for every child who reads this book and every family that goes through the book together, and for myself: May we all grow mightily in our understanding of who God is and our relationship with Him! As Psalm 9:10 says, “Those who know your name put their trust in you.”

Blog Stops

For the Love of Literature, June 25

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, June 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 26

Texas Book-aholic, June 27

deb’s Book Review, June 27

Inklings and notions, June 28

Older & Smarter?, June 29

Splashes of Joy, June 29

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, June 30

Artistic Nobody, July 1 (Guest Review from Donna Cine)

Lighthouse Academy, July 1

For Him and My Family, July 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 3

A Reader’s Brain, July 4

amandainpa, July 5

Simple Harvest Reads, July 5 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, July 6

Spoken from the Heart, July 7

Lots of Helpers, July 8

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Diane is giving away  the grand prize package of signed copies of all three I AM books!!

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/fcd6/i-am-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Flowers From Afghanistan – A Review and Giveaway

Flowers from Afghanistan

About the Book

Book:  Flowers from Afghanistan

Author: Suzy Parish

Genre: Christian War Fiction

Release Date: August 10, 2018

FlowersFromAfghanistan_h12364_750Weighed down by guilt following the death of his two-year-old son, Mac McCann accepts a year-long position training police officers in Afghanistan. Leaving his wife Sophie to grieve alone, he hopes the life-or-death distractions of his self-imposed exile will build a wall between him and his pain.

As camaraderie builds between Mac and the men on base—including a local barber and his precocious little boy—Mac’s heart becomes invested in stories beyond his own tragedy and he learns he is not the only one running from loss. But when the hour of attack arrives, will he be able to see past his guilt to believe there’s still something—and someone—worth living for? With touching details based on true events, Flowers from Afghanistan is a redemptive journey of healing, a chronicle of hope in crisis, and a testament to the faithfulness of God through it all.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

My Thoughts

I am the wife of a soldier.  We have other family members and friends who have served in the military.  So this book was one I knew I had to read since we have known people deployed to the Middle East.  The story starts off with a tragedy no parent should have to live with, and that is the death of a young child.  The story grabbed my attention from the beginning.  Mac and Sophie were people I wanted to get to know.

I found myself unable to put this book down.  I also appreciate how once Mac gets to Afghanistan, the author builds a believable world around Mac and the friends he makes there.  Four men who otherwise may have never met each other come together and form a bond.  Yet each one carries scars from either their past or are developing scars from their present.

This book shows that sometimes second chances for love and happiness can come even when we feel we do not deserve them.  Also, it shows the power of prayer and faith without becoming preachy.

I think one of my other favorite parts of this story rises from Sophie finding her dream while Mac is away.  I love how he supports her in her endeavor.

So check out this book for yourself.

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

 

About the Author

Suzy Parish AuthorSuzy Parish wrote as a Community Columnist for the Huntsville Times. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). Suzy discovered her love of books as a child in Richmond, Virginia when she took refuge from the summer heat in the local Bookmobile. She believes the power of literacy can change lives and stewards a Little Free Library in a local park. She currently resides in Huntsville, Alabama with her husband, a retired Investigator from the Huntsville Police Department. Their tennis-ball addicted dog, Charlie, is her writing companion.

 

 

 

More from Suzy

Have you or a family member served in the military or as first responders? I had you on my heart when I wrote Flowers from Afghanistan. You might say this novel is my “Thank you” to families all over who sacrifice their time and sometimes even their lives to help make the world a safer place.

It’s also my hand, reaching out through my keyboard to beautiful children like the character Bashir. These children want the same things as any child the world over, shelter, food, and to know they are loved. And finally, this book is a love letter from myself to Jesus Christ. He is the reason I write.

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 3

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, July 4 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, July 5

Genesis 5020, July 6

Inklings and notions, July 7

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, July 8

For Him and My Family, July 9

Artistic Nobody, July 10 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, July 11

Through the Fire Blogs, July 12

Quiet Quilter, July 13

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

Mary Hake, July 14

Read Review Rejoice, July 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Suzy is giving away the grand prize of 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/fd90/flowers-from-afghanistan-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for The Sugar Baron’s Ring

About the Book

Book:  The Sugar Baron’s Ring

Author: Lorri Dudley

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: June 23, 2020

A ring is her only tie to a distant homeland, until a marooned Englishman anchors her heart.

Hannah Rose Barrington is the island misfit. Orphaned at a young age, Hannah struggles to provide for her future, while her guardian, a weak-hearted island drunk, bleeds Hannah of her father’s inheritance. Caught between the classes of elite planters and white beggars, Hannah yearns to find a place to belong.

University life has never been Bradlee Granville’s forte. His only hope to graduate is to impress his professors by documenting his travels. After claiming unforeseeable circumstances, he delays his final exams and sets out early on his Grand Tour. However, when his ship wrecks off the coast of the Leeward Islands, Bradlee is left without means to return to England, a mounting deadline, and ruined journals.

When Hannah rescues passengers from a ship breaking apart in the bay, she’s unexpectedly drawn to the witty charm of one of the men. Helping him settle into island life will be a pleasure. However, as creditors, like sharks, begin to circle and her guardian’s desperation becomes life threatening, Hannah finds herself in need of rescue. Will Bradlee look past her pitiful situation to see who she truly is—the sugar baron’s daughter?

 

Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts

The very beginning of this book caught my attention with an impending shipwreck about to happen to Bradlee.  Hannah, living on the island, sees what is happening to the ship and rushes to rescue as many people as she can.  I can not imagine what it would be like to know your parents died in a shipwreck years ago, and then see another shipwreck happen before your own eyes.

From the very beginning, Bradlee and Hannah seem to need each other to have a bright future.  Hannah has had a hard life, but God and her faith have gotten her through it all.  She shows the strength we can receive from God.

Having a guardian squandering her inheritance breaks my heart for Hannah.  Truly, she deserves happiness and more.

Bradlee seems to flounder in life as well as in the water when the shipwreck.  But when Hannah needs him the most, he steps up and demonstrates courage.

So check out this book for yourself.  I definitely recommend it

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

 

About the Author

Lorri Dudley has been a finalist in numerous writing contests and has a master’s degree in Psychology. She lives in Ashland, Massachusetts with her husband and three teenage sons, where writing romance allows her an escape from her testosterone filled household. Find her online at www.lorridudley.com.

 

 

 

 

 

More from Lorri

The Sugar Baron’s Ring is the third book in the Leeward Island series. My heroine is caught between social classes as the daughter of a sugar baron and an impoverished white beggar since her guardian sold her inheritance to pay his debts. To generate the feeling of being a misfit, I delved back to those awkward years of middle and high school, where we often struggle to discover where we belong. Before my senior year, my family and I moved to New England for a job change. I’d had a great group of friends at my old school, but at my new school, I was a stranger—an outsider—trying to find acceptance, much like Hannah.

Bradlee, the hero, on the other hand, was fashioned in a completely different manner. At my house, the slang terms “bruh” and “noob” are tossed around by my three boys, along with constant fraternal teasing. A lot of their sarcastic wit and camaraderie are portrayed through Bradlee and his grand tour companion, Colin. Their light-hearted banter depicts the tight bonds of a deep relationship where faults may be mocked, but offenses are overlooked, and if ever in trouble, they have each other’s backs. Hannah is drawn to Bradlee, craving a similar connection but loses her heart to him in the process.

The first opening scene came about because my family loves Discovery Channel’s Shark Week. After binge-watching practically every episode, I knew my hero and heroine would meet under the duress of a shiny, steel-gray fin plowing through the water. (Queue the Jaws theme song.) However, our resourceful heroine contains the strength to rescue the hero as opposed to the other way around.

All these things, being a misfit, teasing, and shark attacks, playout in a grander scheme to show how God never leaves us nor forsakes us. He’s laying out the pieces of our happily-ever-after while developing our character and purpose. The Sugar Baron’s Ring demonstrates how God’s light shines bright even in the darkness.

To learn more, check out my website at lorridudley.com or click here to watch The Sugar Baron’s Ring book trailerhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lWRQr3drZY8&feature=youtu.be

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, June 23

A Baker’s Perspective, June 23

For Him and My Family, June 24

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 24

Texas Book-aholic, June 25

Genesis 5020, June 25

Daysong Reflections, June 25

Inklings and notions, June 26

Rebecca Tews, June 26

Betti Mace, June 27

Remembrancy, June 27

Reflections From My Bookshelves, June 28

deb’s Book Review, June 28

For the Love of Literature, June 29

Britt Reads Fiction, June 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 29

Kat’s Corner Books, June 30

She Lives To Read, June 30

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 1

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, July 1

Reading Is My SuperPower, July 2

Emily Yager, July 2

Pause for Tales, July 2

KarenSueHadley, July 3

Books, Life, and Christ, July 3

Blossoms and Blessings, July 4

Read Review Rejoice, July 4

Artistic Nobody, July 5 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Batya’s Bits, July 5

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, July 6

Hallie Reads, July 6

Life of Literature, July 6

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Lorri is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon Gift Card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/fcd4/the-sugar-baron-s-ring-celebration-tour-giveaway