Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

An Amish Picnic – A Review

About the Book

Book:  An Amish Picnic

Author: Amy Clipston, Kelly Irvin, Kathleen Fuller, and Vannetta Chapman

Genre: Amish; Christian Romance

Release Date: March 3, 2020

From bestselling authors in the Amish genre come four sweet stories about picnics and romance.

Baskets of Sunshine by Amy Clipston

Kevin Weaver has lived with his brother’s family since his parents passed away when he was young, but he craves a home and family to call his own. Freeman Kurtz owns a successful brick mason business, and Kevin takes the job as Freeman’s apprentice to pursue his own financial freedom.

Phoebe Kurtz is helping her sister with her booth at the marketplace when she notices Kevin, her father’s employee. Their friendship grows, but Kevin is convinced that the difference in their ages makes a relationship between them impossible. Amidst summer outings, Kevin and Phoebe must decide if taking a chance on love is worth the risk.

Candlelight Sweethearts by Kelly Irvin

Esther Marie Shrock loves her job at Valley Grocery Store where she’s worked for four years. Despite a stutter that has plagued her since childhood, she thrives filling orders from a steady stream of customers. Still, at 25, she and her family wonder if romance is in her future.

Jasper Cotter isn’t good with people, but he’s found himself obligated to take over day-to-day operations of the family owned grocery store—a store he doesn’t have the first clue how to run. Thrown together, Esther Marie and Jasper don’t exactly see eye to eye. One night, the store loses power, and the candles aren’t the only things shooting off sparks. Esther Marie and Jasper are suddenly forced to discover common ground when it matters most, and they might be surprised with love along the way.

Reeling in Love by Kathleen Fuller

Nina Stoll and Ira Yoder are just friends. Just friends and fishing buddies. Every Saturday afternoon, they have a picnic at their favorite fishing hole and see who can out fish the other. Until Nina starts to wonder if there’s more.

Her plans to share her feelings go awry, and circumstances seem destined to keep Nina and Ira apart. With both Nina and Ira confused and hurting, it’s going to take courage, some help from the community matchmakers, and a little bit of divine intervention for Nina and Ira to realize they’re each other’s perfect catch.

Picnics and Prospects by Vannetta Chapman

Faith Troyer is claustrophobic, and David Lapp builds tiny houses. They went on a date years ago with disastrous results. Now that they’re in their late twenties, their families and friends are beginning to wonder if either will ever find that special someone. When a picnic outing is diverted by the discovery of a package of letters dating back to the 1970s, they take it upon themselves to find answers to a mystery that causes them to rethink their past and consider their future.

 

Click here to get your copy!

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This collection of Amish novellas combined into one collection is a fun and sweet collection to read.  Each story stands alone, but they all come together to make a collection that is worth reading.  I loved all the stories and all the characters.  Perhaps because we lived in a community with Amish families, I love reading about their lifestyle.

Because the stories stand alone, I love that I could finish one story and not have to immediately start reading the next story.  The characters are enjoyable ad the storylines caught my attention.

So if you enjoy reading about the Amish, check out this book for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

 

About the Author

 

Amy Clipston is the award-winning and bestselling author of the Kauffman Amish Bakery, Hearts of amy-clipstonLancaster Grand Hotel, Amish Heirloom, Amish Homestead, and Amish Marketplace series. Her novels have hit multiple bestseller lists including CBD, CBA, and ECPA. Amy holds a degree in communication from Virginia Wesleyan University and works full-time for the City of Charlotte, NC. Amy lives in North Carolina with her husband, two sons, and four spoiled rotten cats. Visit her online at AmyClipston.com; Facebook: AmyClipstonBooks; Twitter: @AmyClipston; Instagram: @amy_clipston.

kelly-irvinKelly Irvin is the bestselling author of the Every Amish Season and Amish of Bee County series. The Beekeeper’s Son received a starred review from Publishers Weekly, who called it a “beautifully woven masterpiece.” The two-time Carol Award finalist is a former newspaper reporter and retired public relations professional. Kelly lives in Texas with her husband, photographer Tim Irvin. They have two children, three grandchildren, and two cats. In her spare time, she likes to read books by her favorite authors. Visit her online at KellyIrvin.com; Instagram: kelly_irvin; Facebook: Kelly.Irvin.Author; Twitter: @Kelly_S_Irvin.

With over a million copies sold, Kathleen Fuller is the author of several bestselling novels, including the kathleen-fullerHearts of Middlefield novels, the Middlefield Family novels, the Amish of Birch Creek series, and the Amish Letters series as well as a middle-grade Amish series, the Mysteries of Middlefield. Visit her online at KathleenFuller.com; Instagram: kf_booksandhooks; Facebook: WriterKathleenFuller; Twitter: @TheKatJam.

Vannetta ChapmanVannetta Chapman writes inspirational fiction full of grace. She is the author of sixteen novels, including the Pebble Creek Amish series, The Shipshewana Amish Mystery series, and Anna’s Healing, a 2016 Christy Award finalist. Vannetta is a Carol award winner and has also received more than two dozen awards from Romance Writers of America chapter groups. She was a teacher for fifteen years and currently resides in the Texas hill country. Visit Vannetta online: VannettaChapman.com, Twitter: @VannettaChapman, Facebook: VannettaChapmanBooks.

 

Read an Excerpt

Read an excerpt here.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, March 6

Batya’s Bits, March 6

The Avid Reader, March 6

Older & Smarter?, March 7

For Him and My Family, March 7

For the Love of Literature, March 8

Bigreadersite, March 8

Texas Book-aholic, March 9

deb’s Book Review, March 9

Quiet Quilter, March 10

Through the Fire Blogs, March 10

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, March 11

Girls in White Dresses, March 11

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, March 11

Inklings and notions, March 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 12

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 13

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, March 13

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 14

The Collaborative Press, March 14

Splashes of Joy, March 15

janicesbookreviews, March 15

She Lives To Read, March 16

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 16

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, March 16

Blossoms and Blessings, March 17

Books, Life, and Chrst, March 17

Artistic Nobody, March 18 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Southern Gal Loves to Read, March 18

EmpowerMoms, March 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 19

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, March 19

Posted in Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for In Black and White

In Black and white FB Banner

About the Book

Book: In Black and White

Author: Maryann Diorio

Genre: New Adult

Release Date: November 1, 2019

In Black and WhiteA white woman. A black man. And their forbidden love.

Can endurance and faith sustain the love between a white woman and a black man, threatened by rejection, guilt, and racial injustice? Can love alone reconcile their starkly different worlds, lighting the way to a bright future together?

When graduate student, Tori Pendola, a white American woman, and Ghanaian exchange student, Jebuni Kalitsi, heir to his tribe’s chieftaincy, fall deeply in love, they must face not only their own inner demons of rejection and guilt, but also the demons of societal hatred bent on destroying their relationship. Will their love survive the cruel and bitter attacks against them, or will hatred and prejudice gain the upper hand?

In Black and White is a deeply moving story of the power of God’s love to restore all that is broken in our lives.

 

Click here to get your copy.

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From the Bible, it is clear that God does not see a person’s skin color but their heart instead.  Unfortunately, we are not blessed as humans to always be that free.  This book does an excellent job of examining the difficulties that arise when a Caucasian woman and an African male meet and eventually fall in love.

The message of the book is a powerful one that society sometimes puts unreasonable demands on individuals of different religious or ethnic backgrounds.  But when someone has faith in God and feels called to love someone, faith can ensure they can overcome obstacles.

So if you want to read a book about finding true love in the midst of racial tensions and more, check out this book for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

Mary Ann DiorioDr. MaryAnn Diorio is an award-winning author of compelling, page-turning fiction that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart. She is the author of the popular trilogy titled THE ITALIAN CHRONICLES, set in 19th-century Sicily. MaryAnn holds the PhD in French with a concentration in Comparative Literature. She is also a Certified Life Coach and a Licensed Minister. MaryAnn and her husband Dom, a retired ER physician, recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. They are the blessed parents of two wonderful adult daughters, a very smart son-in-law, and six rambunctious grandchildren. When not writing, MaryAnn enjoys painting, playing the piano, and making up silly songs with her grandchildren. You can learn more about MaryAnn and her writing at https://www.maryanndiorio.com

 

More from MaryAnn

Greetings, awesome readers and friends!  It’s great to have you with me on this tour. I trust you’ll be blessed and have lots of fun.

We writers are a strange breed.  While we know what we are writing, we often don’t fully understand what we have written. Does that make sense? If not, let me explain.

Before I started writing In Black and White, I prayed. And I prayed hard. The idea for my story came to me back in the 1990s. Yes. You read that right! But it first came to me as a seed that the Lord planted in my heart. The seed would need time to grow, sprout, and blossom. So, back in the 90s, the Lord told me it wasn’t time to write my story yet.

So, I watered and waited as the seed began to do its thing. At the beginning of 2018, the Lord said, “It’s time.” And I instantly knew what He meant. It was time to start writing In Black and White.

So, in January of 2018, I started writing In Black and White. For almost two years, I wrote. The story took many twists and turns and was finally completed in August of 2019.

I mentioned earlier that we writers don’t often fully understand what we have written. What do I mean? I mean that often, for me, it is after I write the story that I recognize the theme of the story.

It’s like this: A seed doesn’t really understand what its Maker is doing. It just follows the plan. When I write, I don’t fully understand what Holy Spirit is doing. I just follow His lead.

Amazingly, the theme that I recognized in my latest novel is the same theme that appears in virtually all of my fiction. What is that theme? It’s forgiveness.

It seems as though the message of forgiveness is the spiritual trademark of my fiction. Why? Perhaps because I’ve had to do a lot of forgiving during my life—and a lot of asking for forgiveness.

Forgiveness is the reason Jesus came to earth. He died to forgive us. If we want to be like Him, we, too, need to forgive.

So, as you read my story, I pray that it will stir you to forgive anyone and everyone in your life who has hurt you in any way. And, if need be, I pray that my story will encourage you to ask forgiveness of those whom you have hurt.

Our heavenly Father is the Great Forgiver, May we become like Him by making forgiveness the theme of our lives.

With love and blessings,MaryAnn Diorio

 

Recipe for Italian Spaghetti and Meatballs from MaryAnn Diorio’s novel, In Black and White. This is my late Italian mother’s recipe, straight from Italy.

Enza’s Authentic Spaghetti and Meatballs Recipe

            MEATBALLS 

1 lb. ground meat (beef, veal, pork, turkey, or chicken, or a mixture of two or all three in any proportion)

1 large egg (not beaten)

1 small onion, chopped

1 medium clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped (preferably the flat Italian type, but the curly kind will do)

2 teaspoons fresh basil, chopped

1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper (peppercorns ground in peppermill)

Salt to taste (Use 1/8 teaspoon for first time making this recipe and adjust, if needed, next time.)

1 1/2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

1 tablespoon plain breadcrumbs

1 tablespoon milk (whole, 2% or fat-free)

 

  • Prepare a baking pan (or oven-proof dish) by coating it lightly with any kind of olive oil.
  • Set oven on “bake” and temperature at 350º.
  • Place all recipe ingredients in large bowl.
  • With clean hands, mix all ingredients together until blended.
  • Fill 1/2 cup measuring cup with blended meat mixture ragù.
  • Remove meat mixture from 1/2 cup and roll mixture gently between palms of hands until meatball is shaped.
  • Place meatballs on oil-coated baking pan.
  • Continue measuring meat mixture, shaping it into meatballs and placing meatballs on oil-coated baking pan. NOTE: BE SURE TO LEAVE SPACE AROUND EACH MEATBALL TO ENSURE EVEN COOKING.
  • Bake meatballs for 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center of meatball comes out clean.

 

NOTE: Any drippings left in pan may be used as basis for homemade pasta sauce (“ragù” or “gravy”). If so desired, cool drippings, place in freezer-proof container, label contents of container, and freeze.

SPAGHETTI

  • Cook pasta of choice according to package directions.
  • Serve with meatballs and your favorite spaghetti sauce.

ENJOY!!!

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, March 3

Artistic Nobody, March 4 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 5

Older & Smarter?, March 6

By The Book, March 7 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, March 8

Inklings and notions, March 9

For the Love of Literature, March 10 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, March 11

Pause for Tales, March 12

All 4 and About Books, March 13 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 14

CarpeDiem, March 15

janicesbookreviews, March 16

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, MaryAnn 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/f63e/in-black-and-white-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Will the Real Person Please Stand Up? – A Review

Will the real person please stand up FB banner

About the Book

Book:  Will the Real Person Please Stand Up?

Author: Gail Porter

Genre:  Non-Fiction/Personal Growth

Release Date: Oct 1, 2018

Will the Real Person Please Stand UPDoes fear of rejection hold you back from letting people see the real you? Are you tired of hiding?

Gail Porter lived with this kind of fear during her childhood and most of her adult life. When God revealed her bondage to the power of fear, she was set free to come out of hiding and become who He’d created her to be. What she learned grew into a passion to help others experience the same freedom.

Will the Real Person Please Stand Up? offers much-needed hope to those who long to be set free from the fear of rejection and become their authentic selves. In this life-changing book you will read Gail’s own experiences, stories of real people, and input from those in the medical field. Gail walks you through the process of identifying and acknowledging what holds you captive so you can live in freedom rather than in fear.

With God’s help, you can walk out of your self-made prison, break strongholds, and taste the freedom that will allow you to become who God made you to be. Get ready to stand up and say, “This is the real me.”

“Gail teaches her readers how to embrace the present without encumbrances of the past. With practical, action-based steps, we learn to climb mountains with new determination and anticipate our futures with joy.” Jeanne LeMay, author of Dear God I’m Desperate: Women Have Issues, God Has Answers.

 

Click here to get your copy.

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Have you ever suffered from fear, and wondered if there has to be more you are meant to do?  Have you ever wondered who God has called you to be?  If so, you should definitely check out this book for yourself.

The personal stories make the book become real and meaningful in a personal way.  Gal Porter does an incredible job of illustrating how to be set free from the bondage of fear.  As someone who moved around constantly while growing up, fear of rejection was something I lived with daily. My older sister was the type of person who quickly and easily made friends, but it was difficult for me to make friends easily.  So I could relate to this book in some ways.

Gail Porter demonstrates how it is possible to conquer fear and rejection and come out on the other side as the person God planned on you being.  So check out this book for yourself.

I definitely recommend reading it.  I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

Gail porter updatedGail Porter graduated from Oregon State University and spent fifty years serving with Cru/Campus Crusade for Christ. She is the author of Life through Loss: Facing Your Pain, Finding Your Purpose and two co-written books. Gail lives in Orlando, Florida, where she enjoys ballroom dancing and her favorite role of aunt to her nieces and nephews.

 

More from Gail

  • Do you hide from others because you’re afraid they won’t like what they discover about you?
  • Are you holding back from walking through God’s open doors because you don’t think you’ll perform well enough?
  • Have you allowed past experiences or personal fears to keep you from becoming the person God intended you to be?

Join me on a journey to escape the bondage of your fear of rejection and experience the freedom to become the Real Person God created you to be.

I spent many years in bondage, subconsciously building walls, designing masks, creating a false identity, and striving for perfection—all attempts to fill my longing for love and acceptance. Through my experience of coming out of hiding, breaking barriers with the help of God, and tasting true freedom, I discovered a passion to help set others free.

You will learn about my journey to freedom in my book, Will the Real Person Please Stand Up? Rising Above the Fear of Rejection. I’ll walk you through the process of identifying and acknowledging what holds you captive, breaking barriers, and taking that first step to freedom.

As you read my personal story, as well as the stories of many others, you will discover how much God wants you to step on the path to freedom. Say yes to God, and let’s travel this road of freedom together! Then we can all stand up and say, “This is the real me!”

Thank you for being part of this blog tour! I’m excited about the way God will change your life as you allow Him to lead you to His path of freedom where you can let go of your fear of rejection, become your authentic self, and experience life fully.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 2

deb’s Book Review, March 3

Artistic Nobody, March 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, March 4

Texas Book-aholic, March 5

SPLASHES of Joy, March 6

Rebecca Tews, March 7

Inklings and notions, March 8

For the Love of Literature, March 9 (Author Interview)

Betti Mace, March 10

For Him and My Family, March 11

Lukewarm Tea, March 12 (Author Interview)

Create! Teach! Inspire!, March 13

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 14

Wishful Endings, March 15 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Gail is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a signed 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/f6d4/will-the-real-person-please-stand-up-celebration-tour-giveaway