Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Finding Harmony ~ A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Finding Harmony

Authors: Alyssa Roat and Hope Bolinger

Genre: Sweet Contemporary Romance

Release date: July 5, 2022

Can two people-pleasing musicians win the grand prize, or will they be forced to give up music for good?

Newly hired worship leader Elijah Peterson can’t seem to catch a break with his church’s congregation. With conflicting demands from congregants, he struggles to find a way to make everyone happy, especially Don, a man who’s rumored to have driven out the last worship leader.

Music teacher Olivia “Liv” Wilson says yes to everything—piano lessons, church volunteering, extra shifts—all while struggling to help pay her dad’s medical bills. As jobs fall through, she’s hit with even worse news—with bills piling up, they could lose her childhood home.

When their meddling roommates force Elijah and Liv into a cooking class together, the two come up with a plan. They’ll enter an indie songwriting competition—with a cash prize that could be enough to save Liv’s house. And maybe if Elijah can win, his musical family and congregation will finally take him seriously.

But winning the competition might mean losing themselves in the process. Can they find a way to strike harmony between writing songs they love and songs the audience wants to hear?

hear?

Click here to get your copy!

Finding Harmony is the second story in the Roseville Romance series. Elijah Peterson and Olivia “Liv” Watson both find themselves seeking to please others often at their own expense. Perhaps my love of music helped bring this story to life for me.

Harmony in music and life can be hard to create. These two individuals struggle with finding a way to please God while pleasing those around them. Written by two individuals, I found myself caught up in this story.

So if you enjoy stories involving music, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Authors

Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat are the authors of nearly twenty books both independently and co-authored. They have worked in a wide variety of roles within the publishing industry as agents, editors, writers, journalists, and publicists. When not writing, Hope is a theater nerd who loves to hike, and Alyssa is a history nerd and game enthusiast. Both are proud cat moms. You can learn more about them on social media @hopekbolinger and @alyssawrote.

More from Alyssa

In college, Hope and I (Alyssa) didn’t know the word “no.” After all, our professors, advisors, and chapel speakers all told us, “Say yes to every opportunity. Volunteer for everything. If you don’t do it now, it will be too late. Your career will fail. You won’t please God. Etc. Etc.”

So we followed that advice, and we well-nigh burned ourselves out. Faced with a litany of health issues caused by overworking, we realized after college that maybe we had taken things too far. So we began to work on unlearning this mindset.

To this day, we have to call each other and ask, “Is it okay if I turn down this unpaid opportunity? If I don’t have time for this volunteer work? Will people be mad at me?”

We channeled a lot of this people-pleasing into Finding Harmony. As we recovered from overworking ourselves, our characters Elijah and Liv learned that they didn’t need to do everything. As we fell back in love with writing for the sake of the art, not for the A+, our characters discovered how to remain true to their music.

We hope you enjoy reading Finding Harmony as much as we enjoyed writing it—and we encourage you to follow God’s call on your life, regardless of expectations.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 20

Spoken from the Heart, July 21 (Author Interview)

The Sacred Line, July 21

Texas Book-aholic, July 22

Inklings and notions, July 23

For Him and My Family, July 24

For the Love of Literature, July 25 (Author Interview)

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, July 25

deb’s Book Review, July 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 27

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 28

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 30

Splashes of Joy, July 31 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 1

Blogging With Carol, August 2

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Hope and Alyssa are giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and Picture Imperfect and Finding Harmony, in preferred format (paperback U.S. only)!!

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

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Lineage of Corruption Celebration Tour ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Lineage of Corruption

Author: Robin Patchen

Genre: Christian romantic suspense

Release date: July 19, 2022

In the world of big money and big politics, nobody walks away unscathed.

The people of Coventry never suspect that Josie Smith, owner of the local coffee shop, is the daughter of a powerful senator. She went to Washington to serve constituents, but her desire to do good morphed into a desire to win at all costs. When one of those costs grew too heavy to bear, she changed her name and left DC, vowing to never get involved in politics again. But when her father becomes his party’s lone voice standing against corrupt policies, his enemies will do whatever it takes to get his vote, and Josie finds herself caught in a familiar web of dirty tricks.

Thomas Windham never planned to run for office, but when Coventry’s disgraced mayor is replaced by a dishonest appointee, he feels he has no choice but to throw his hat in the ring. He doesn’t have a chance against the well-known politician, that is until he meets Josie, who knows more about running for office than a typical café owner would.

When Josie finds herself in danger, they form an alliance—his protection for her wisdom. The election becomes secondary as Josie’s adversaries close in. But can Josie and Thomas come out victorious against enemies determined to get what they want at any cost?

Don’t miss this pulse-pounding Christian romantic suspense that’ll keep you reading late into the night.

Click here to get your copy!

Lineage of Corruption masterfully examines the subject of politics and winning at any cost. Josie Smith owns the coffee shop in Coventry; however, as the daughter of a powerful senator who refuses to compromise his values, she finds herself in a dangerous situation.

Thomas Wyndham owns the insurance agency next to her coffee shop, and finds himself running for mayor. I love how the characters and the storyline develop throughout this story. I found the story kept me guessing about who was behind the attacks. So if you enjoy Christian suspense novels, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

Robin Patchen is a USA Today bestselling and award-winning author of Christian romantic suspense. She grew up in a small town in New Hampshire, the setting of her Nutfield Saga books, and then headed to Boston to earn a journalism degree. Working in marketing and public relations, she discovered how much she loathed the nine-to-five ball and chain. After relocating to the Southwest, she started writing her first novel while she homeschooled her three children. The novel was dreadful, but her passion for storytelling didn’t wane. Thankfully, as her children grew, so did her writing ability. Now that her kids are adults, she has more time to play with the lives of fictional heroes and heroines, wreaking havoc and working magic to give her characters happy endings. When she’s not writing, she’s editing or reading, proving that most of her life revolves around the twenty-six letters of the alphabet. Visit https://robinpatchen.com/subscribe to receive a free book and stay informed about Robin’s latest projects.

More from Robin

Boston’s Logan Airport was about an hour from the little town in southern New Hampshire where I grew up. I remember pre-dawn drives, sitting in the backseat of our station wagon with my big sister and my little brother on our way to catch a flight. My dad was an airline pilot, so we traveled a lot in those days.

My parents always had a news station playing in the background. The anchor would read the news, and then Mom and Dad would discuss it at length while we tried to doze in the backseat.

They didn’t agree on everything, but they always saw eye-to-eye on politics.

My parents separated when I was a teenager and ultimately divorced. Even today, when they’re in a room together—they get along very well well—their conversations often drift to what’s going on in Washington.

Maybe that’s why I’ve always been interested in national politics.

My kids hate it when I talk about this policy or that vote. My husband would much prefer to discuss sports or work or…pretty much anything else. But I’ve always loved politics—the wrangling, the power plays, the backroom deals we can only guess at.

Talk about high-stakes drama on a worldwide stage. Hmm, I’m a suspense writer. Maybe it’s not that shocking that I love politics.

Lineage of Corruption doesn’t take place in the hallowed halls of Washington DC, nor are most of the characters in the story big players in the political scene. No, my story takes place in central New Hampshire, and its main characters are a coffee shop owner and a mayoral candidate. But that coffee shop owner’s father is a senator, a senator who’s being pressured to vote yes on a bill he vehemently disagrees with.

His enemies are willing to do whatever it takes to secure his vote, even if it means threatening his daughter.

So, it’s not exactly a political thriller. But it is all about big money and big names grappling for position in the world’s most powerful nation.

Which I personally think is super fun. To write about, anyway. In reality, politics has gotten way too rancorous and destructive for my tastes. Don’t worry—I won’t be lecturing you about what you should believe. I don’t honor one party or one president while throwing the other under the bus. In fact, I don’t mention either party or any actual politicians by name in the entire book.

This story isn’t about pushing my personal beliefs. It is about examining the lengths to which some people are willing to go to secure their own personal agendas.

(And it’s about man and a woman who fall in love, which is also super fun.)

I sure hope you’ll check it out.

Oh, and Josie, the coffee shop owner, loves to cook. Here’s a recipe she makes for the hero. It’s a great summertime meal and happens to be a staple at the Patchen household.

Linguine Caprese

4 ripe large tomatoes, cut into ½-inch cubes

1 lb. mozzarella cheese (I use the small mozzarella balls (also called pearls), but any whole-milk mozzarella, cut into chunks, will do)

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tbsp. dried basil (or 1 cup cleaned, fresh basil, cut into strips)

Enough olive oil to coat all of the above—about ¾ cup

Salt and pepper to taste

1 lb. linguine

Freshly grated parmesan

Combine tomatoes, cheese, garlic, basil, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Cover and let sit at least two hours at room temperature.

Cook linguine according to package directions.

Drain pasta and immediately toss with the tomato mixture. Serve at once with grated parmesan cheese. (Goes great with crusty white bread on the side.)

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 18

Genesis 5020, July 18

An Author’s Take, July 19

Inklings and notions, July 20

Betti Mace, July 21

For Him and My Family, July 22

Blossoms and Blessings, July 22

Texas Book-aholic, July 23

deb’s Book Review, July 24

lalkesidelivingsite, July 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 26

Blogging With Carol, July 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 27

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 28

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 30

Spoken from the Heart, July 30

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 31

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Robin is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card, copy of Inheritance of Secrets, and a previous book in the series!!

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/1f7f4/lineage-of-corruption-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Overtaken by Grace Celebration Tour ~ Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Overtaken By Grace

Author: Debbie Milam

Genre: Christian Living, Inspirational

Release date: May 15, 2017

Are you weary, wounded, or worried? Does grief weigh heavy? Do burdens feel too great to bear? Then you are perfectly positioned for a miraculous move of God. Overtaken by Grace is a transparent read, grounded in scripture and alive with hope. It depicts how God epically shows up and shows off and gives you the tools to experience His hope, healing, and miracles. Join Author Debbie Milam as she guides you on an adventure, diving deep into the bible to see what it says about:

  • God’s Presence in Our Lives
  • God’s Love in Our Relationships
  • God’s Peace in Our Emotions
  • God’s Power in His Word
  • God’s Joy in Our Gratitude
  • God’s Hand in the Miraculous

Haven’t you struggled long enough. God is waiting with open arms for you to let go and be overtaken by His grace. He is inviting you on the undertaking of a lifetime.

Click here to get your copy!

Overtaken by Grace provides the perfect accompaniment to living life. Through Scriptural references and more this book leads you down a path to recognize God’s Grace and His mercy. Regardless of where you are in life or how you feel, you will be able to take something away from this book.

I definitely found myself caught in what the author had to say. I felt the Scriptures used suited the topic perfectly. I believe this book could be re-read or read slowly and studied. So check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

Debbie Milam is an award-winning occupational therapist, author and past syndicated columnist for United Press International’s Religion and Spirituality Division.

She is the author of Miracles in the Middle, Overtaken by Grace, And God Said and Lord Show Me You Are Here.

Debbie’s ground-breaking work has been featured in First for Women, the Miami Herald, Elle, and Ladies Home Journal, and on the Hallmark Channel, PBS, and WebMD.

Through her 501(c)3 Grace Love Well Foundation, her mission is to inspire people to the beauty, love, power, and presence of God. As an organization we have donated thousands of books to churches, missions work, prisons, pastoral counselors and prayer teams.

For more resources to deepen your intimacy with God and find peace in His presence, visit us online at gracelovewell.org or YouTube/Debbie Milam

More from Debbie

Through the profound joy and sorrow life brings and by His grace I have seen signs and wonders, experienced miraculous healings and came to know how alive the Lord is. Our gracious God supernaturally healed me from a 10 year life altering brain injury and post traumatic stress disorder, comforted me from the deep grief after the loss of more loved ones than I can count, and blessed me in more ways than I can imagine.  The same God who did this for me is right there for you too.  The full story of these miracles is detailed in my book Overtaken by Grace. I would love to share the hope of Christ with your readers.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 22

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 23

Texas Book-aholic, July 24

Inklings and notions, July 25

For Him and My Family, July 26

deb’s Book Review, July 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 28

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 29

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 30

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 31

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 1

Beauty in the Binding, August 2 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, August 2

Cats in the Cradle Blog, August 3

Splashes of Joy, August 4 (Author Interview)

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, August 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Debbie 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/1f7f9/overtaken-by-grace-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Rebuilding Hearts ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Rebuilding Hearts

Author: Carolyn Miller

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release date: June 28, 2022

Who knew a bank robbery could show a girl that good guys still exist?

Tim Franklin. Quiet, shy, almost incapable of speaking to a girl, and a budding horticulturist. Oh, and he survived a bank robbery five years ago, not to mention its resulting trauma.

Bookworm Bella Dwyer just wants to feel safe, and Tim’s actions during the robbery made her believe there might be guys who live up to her fictional heroes. Trouble is, a chance with Tim seems as remote as this year’s celebrity heartthrob.

Instead, she settled for a relationship with a guy who’s commitment-phobic.

So when Bella encounters Tim on tiny Sparrow Island, the challenges of her past and present collide, and she questions whether there really is a future with a man who can’t commit.

In a leap of faith, Bella dumps her boyfriend, even before shy-guy Tim can make a move. But in wanting to live by faith and conquer fear, has she made the right choice, or are her hopes for freedom and a future destined to fail?

Read the next Sparrow Island novel in the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

Click here to get your copy!

The next installment of the Independence Islands series continues the stories on Sparrow Island. Bella comes to to the island and finds someone from her past. Tim Franklin lives on Sparrow Island and finds himself drawn to Bella.

I love how this series connects characters from other books and authors into an amazing tapestry that keeps you reading. As Christians the way this story and the characters come together keeps me reading. So check out this book and the entire series for your

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

About the Author

Carolyn Miller lives in the beautiful Southern Highlands of New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and four children. Together with her husband she has pastored a church for ten years, and worked as a public high school English and Learning and Support teacher. She loves reading, music, films, gardens, art, travel and international food, and really enjoy creating worlds where flawed people can grow in faith, hope and love.
A longtime lover of romance, especially that of Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer’s Regency era, Carolyn holds a BA in English Literature, and loves drawing readers into fictional worlds that show the truth of God’s grace in our lives.


Her novels include The Elusive Miss Ellison, The Captivating Lady Charlotte, The Dishonorable Miss DeLancey, Winning Miss Winthrop, Miss Serena’s Secret, The Making of Mrs. Hale, A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh, and Underestimating Miss Cecilia, all available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, Koorong, etc

More from Carolyn

Who doesn’t love to read a book about a bookworm?

Many avid readers I know love the idea of working in a library – so imagine working in a library on a tiny island! And then to encounter a handsome borrower of books with arms of Thor, well, it’d be like a fictional hero come to life. Except maybe this hero isn’t so fictional…

For Rebuilding Hearts, my next book in the Independence Islands series, I loved turning the spotlight onto Tim Franklin, Greener Gardens’ strong, silent employee with secret dreams, and exploring what happens when two opposites attract over a shared love of books and movies.

Rebuilding Hearts explores some bigger questions concerning family, identity and whether God’s plans can be considered good when things go wrong. I love writing fiction that’s grounded in truth, with realistic, flawed characters who are on God journeys to find faith, freedom, and love.

I’m so thankful people are enjoying my contemporary books, where I can share my love of gardens (& my horticulturalist hubby’s expertise!) to a new audience. Please check out my website www.carolynmillerauthor.com to see what’s growing in my garden here in my corner of Australia.

If you enjoy stories of hope, heart and humor, then you’ll be sure to enjoy this novel about a librarian and a Hemsworthy hero as together they find restoration for their hearts.

Happy reading!

Carolyn

Blog Stops

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 23

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 24

Britt Reads Fiction, July 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 25

She Lives To Read, July 26

Library Lady’s Kid lit, July 26

Inklings and notions, July 27

Texas Book-aholic, July 28

By the Book, July 28

For Him and My Family, July 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 30

Blogging With Carol, July 30

deb’s Book Review, July 31

Blossoms and Blessings, August 1

Lis Loves Reading, August 1

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 2

Aryn the Libraryan, August 3

Splashes of Joy, August 4

Sylvan Musings, August 4

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 5

Miriam Jacob, August 5

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Carolyn is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1f7fa/rebuilding-hearts-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Byway to Danger ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Byway to Danger

Author: Sandra Merville Hart

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: July 19, 2022

Everyone in Richmond has secrets. Especially the spies.

Meg Brooks, widow, didn’t stop spying for the Union when her job at the Pinkerton National Detective Agency ended, especially now that she lives in the Confederate capital. Her job at the Yancey bakery provides many opportunities to discover vital information about the Confederacy to pass on to her Union contact. She prefers to work alone, yet the strong, silent baker earns her respect and tugs at her heart.

Cade Yancey knows the beautiful widow is a spy when he hires her only because his fellow Unionist spies know of her activities. Meg sure didn’t tell him. He’s glad she knows how to keep her mouth shut, for he has hidden his dangerous activities from even his closest friends. The more his feelings for the courageous woman grow, the greater his determination to protect her by guarding his secrets. Her own investigations place her in enough peril.

As danger escalates, Meg realizes her choice to work alone isn’t a wise one. Can she trust Cade with details from her past not even her family knows?

Click here to get your copy!

As a Christian historical fiction this story chronicles the lives Meg, Brooks and Cade Yancey along with their friends and family members. I love how this story builds on earlier stories and characters. The third book in the series, the author builds a suspenseful story involving spies, the Underground Railroad, and the bonds of family.

As a former Pinkerton agent, Meg Brooks finds herself in Richmond working at a bakery and acquiring information to send to the North. The world-building and character development really drew me into this book. I also appreciated how the relationship developed between Cade and Meg. So check out this book for yourself.

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but this in no way influenced my review. All 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. Connect with Sandra on her blog, https://sandramervillehart.wordpress.com/.

More from Sandra

In Byway to Danger, Book 3 of my “Spies of the Civil War” series, both Cade and Meg—our hero and heroine—are Union spies living in Richmond, the Confederate capital in 1862. As if this isn’t dangerous enough, Meg is also a former Pinkerton spy. One Pinkerton spy was hanged in the spring and three others now sit in Richmond jails.

Meg works as an assistant in Cade’s bakery. The strong, quiet man keeps a secret from Meg to protect her, for he’s a conductor on the Underground Railroad. He provides food, clothing, and a safe place to stay until he’s able to take them on to the next stop several miles outside the city. Cade has done this for years before the Civil War and continues as the war rages, a perilous mission.

Historically, early in the war on May 23, 1861, three men escaped slavery and fled to Fort Monroe. Frank Baker, Shepard Mallory, and James Townsend had worked on Confederate fortifications before escaping on a rowboat. They sought the safety of Union soldiers at the fort. The men informed Union Major General Benjamin F. Butler that they escaped from Confederate Colonel Charles K. Mallory of the 115th Virginia Militia.

The next day, Confederate Major John B. Cary arrived at Fort Monroe under a flag of truce. Cary met with Butler and requested he return the enslaved men to Mallory as required by the Fugitive Slave Act.

Butler did some fast thinking. Since the three men had been building fortifications for war, they could be seized as “contraband of war” and didn’t have to be returned. His refusal to return the men was a pivotal decision and sparked a future law that protected fugitives who sought the protection of Union camps.

Dozens of fugitive men, women, and children had joined Baker, Mallory, and Townsend at Fort Monroe within three days. Many others fled to the fort in the following months. “Grand Contraband Camp” was established about three miles from Fort Monroe on the charred remains of Hampton to accommodate the hundreds of fugitives.  It was the nation’s first self-contained black community. By 1865, thousands lived in this camp.

Part of my research for this novel involved a trip to Virginia’s Fort Monroe. (If you love history and have never visited Fort Monroe, I recommend it!) Though I wasn’t certain of my story at the time of my visit, I was so inspired by the fort’s history that I knew it had to be part of my story. And it is!

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 beginning with Book 1 Avenue of Betrayal, Book 2 Boulevard of Confusionand Book 3 Byway to Danger!

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 22

Spoken from the Heart, July 22

Bizwings Blog, July 23

Inklings and notions, July 24

Betti Mace, July 25

Book Looks by Lisa, July 25

Texas Book-aholic, July 26

For Him and My Family, July 27

Connie’s History Classroom, July 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 29

deb’s Book Review, July 30

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 31

Vicarious Living, July 31

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 1

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 2

Blossoms and Blessings, August 3

Giveaway

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.

https://promosimple.com/ps/1f7f8/byway-to-danger-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Vanished Without A Trace ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Vanished Without a Trace

Author: Sarah Hamaker

Genre: Romantic Suspence

Release date: June 28, 2022

A missing person case. A new clue. And a fight for survival.

After nine years searching for his missing sister, attorney Henderson Parker uncovers a clue that leads him to Twin Oaks, Virginia—and podcaster Elle Updike investigating the case. Partnering with the journalist is the last thing Henderson wants, until mysterious thugs make multiple attacks on both their lives. Now they’ll have to trust each other…before the suspected kidnappers make them disappear for good.

Click here to get you copy!

As I began reading this book, I quickly found myself caught up in the story of Henderson Parker, his missing sister Helena, and the podcaster Ellie Updike, who only wants to help him find his sister. As the title implies Helena vanished without a trace. However, Henderson refuses to believe she died or does not want to be found. When his search takes him to Twin Oaks, Virginia, he encounters Ellie Updike.

Ellie Updike hosts a podcast that sets out to chronicle families’ journeys who attempt to find a lost loved one. She firmly believes she and her team potentially have the resources to help Henderson. But the suspense in this novel kept me reading and guessing about the true villain and the actual reason behind the sinister plot.

As I kept reading, I quickly found myself caught up in the story, and wanted to know more about “the compound” and the secrets Helena might be keeping. The dynamics and chemistry between Ellie and Henderson bring this story to life. The characters and storyline mesmerized me from the moment I started reading, and I found myself unable to put this book down until I finished it.

Others in this book carry secrets that the reader will appreciate by the end of the story. So if you enjoy Christian suspense novels, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

Sarah Hamaker loves writing books “where the hero and heroine fall in love while running for their lives.” She’s written romantic suspense novels and nonfiction books, as well as stories in Chicken Soup for the Soul volumes. As a writers coach, her heart is encouraging writers. She’s a member of ACFW; ACFW Virginia Chapter; and Faith, Hope and Love, as well as the president of Capital Christian Writers Fellowship. Her podcast, “The Romantic Side of Suspense,” can be found wherever you listen to podcasts. Sarah lives in Virginia with her husband, four teenagers, a preschool foster child and three cats. Visit her online at sarahhamakerfiction.com.

More from Sarah

As a podcaster myself, I’ve listened to many true crime podcasts, such as “Up and Vanished” and “Accused,” so when I was thinking about the plot for Vanished Without a Trace, I decided to have my heroine be a true crime podcaster investigating cold missing persons cases. I also am fascinated by unsolved mysteries, probably because I love history, and have a strong sense of justice—I want those who commit crimes to be caught. Of course, as a Christian, I do rest in the assurance of God as the ultimate and only truly righteous Judge, but I do find myself rooting for cold cases to be solved and criminals brought to justice. Thus the book combines my two of my interests—cold cases and true crime.

Personally, I can’t imagine anything more difficult than to have a loved one go missing and never be found or heard from again. The uncertainty of their fate must weigh very heavily on the family members left behind. I wanted to capture some of that with Henderson’s strong desire to find his missing sister, Helena, and reunite her with their mother. He’s seen how much Helena’s absence has taken a toll on their mother’s health and mental well-being, and when he has a chance to chase down the first real lead in years, he jumps at it.

Elle’s motives are no less personal than Henderson’s—her own heart aches for these grieving families. Having distant parents, she wants to help families heal by discovering what happened to a loved one if possible. But Henderson doesn’t trust her motives and the two clash more often than not over her podcast.

I hope you enjoy seeing how Elle and Henderson learn to work together to find Helena…and perhaps, their own happy ending.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 25

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, July 25

Bizwings Blog, July 26

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 27

Through the Fire Blogs, July 27

Betti Mace, July 28

For the Love of Literature, July 28

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 29

Pause for Tales, July 29

Texas Book-aholic, July 30

Inklings and notions, July 31

Genesis 5020, August 1

Bigreadersite, August 1

For Him and My Family, August 2

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, August 2

deb’s Book Review, August 3

Livin’ Lit, August 3

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 4

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, August 5

Paula’s Persuasion, August 5

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, August 6

Blogging With Carol, August 7

Mary Hake, August 7

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sarah is giving away the grand prize package of a Vanished Without a Trace branded tote bag, Vanished Without a Trace pin, a print copy of the book, plus 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/1ffe1/vanished-without-a-trace-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Mistletoe Village ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Mistletoe Village

Author: Kathleen J. Robison

Genre: Holiday Romance

Release date: November 30, 2021

Two broken women, two defeated children. Can Grace offer what they’re looking for? When the big city holds nothing but painful memories for sisters Rence and Sandy, they pack it up and head out for Grace and the promises it holds.

Promises of a new start. A new job at Grace General for Rence and a place to begin healing. But most of all, a promise to each of the sisters’ hurting children that a real Christmas awaits them in Grace, complete with snow on giant evergreens and lots of Mistletoe Magic.

But despite its Christmas card atmosphere, Grace, Oregon seems to hold a lot of secrets. Who is that giant of a man they encounter in the woods? Why won’t anyone talk about him? What is the hold the past seems to have over the town? Will they be able to break it before history tragically repeats itself? And will Grace be the place where love and forgiveness finally meet?

Click here to get your copy!

Grace, Oregon offers two sisters and their two children a fresh start. When Rence and her sister along with their two children arrive in Grace, Oregon, they discover a man carrying an ax who creates quite an imposing presence. But as the group gets to know him, they realize appearances can be deceiving.

The residents of Grace, Oregon create a moving tapestry of people that I wanted to get to know. I also found the storyline to move at a good pace. The renewal of Mistletoe Village, a Christmas village provides the perfect backdrop for overcoming a painful past to find a joyful future. Someone believing in someone often allows that person to believe in himself or herself.

So if you enjoy Christmas stories with heartfelt stories and wonderful characters, check out this story for yourself.

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

About the Author

Kathleen J. Robison is an Okinawan-American, born in Okinawa, and raised in California, Florida, Mississippi, and Singapore. Her travels and her family are the sources of her inspiration for her books. Kathleen and her Pastor husband have eight adult children. Seven are married, blessing them with eighteen grandchildren and counting. Her ethnically diverse background extends to her family of currently thirty-five personalities which provide many opportunities to share God’s amazing love amidst the challenges of real life.

More from Kathleen

I love Christmas stories, and since becoming an author, I’ve wanted to write one. Mistletoe Village started out as Mistletoe Hermit, but then it wasn’t going in quite the happy direction that I wanted. So Mistletoe Village was born. I wrote this sweet, cozy, slightly suspenseful romance with all the elements that make Christmas … Christmas! But most importantly, it’s always about the faith element, Christ.

The main character Rence Paladin is dear to my heart. She was created with someone extraordinary in mind, and I had that person read the book to see what she thought. When she finished, she turned bright red and answered, even if you hadn’t told me … I knew it was me! However, it’s not her story, but it encompasses her delightful personality, some of her sweet memories of a single-mom, and how she strives to keep her focus on Christ while always serving others.

So let’s go. Let me take you to Mistletoe Village. You’ll find a little of everything that oozes Christmas in the tiny town of Grace. Holiday spirit, decorations, a children’s church pageant, and a Christmas festival. Oh, and I’ll introduce you to little Gus, the feisty family cock-a-poo. But most of all, I hope you, like Rence and Carl, rediscover the joy of Christmas at Mistletoe Village.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 19

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 19

Texas Book-aholic, July 20

Genesis 5020, July 21

By the Book, July 22

For Him and My Family, July 23

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 24

lakesidelivingsite, July 25

Inklings and notions, July 26

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 27

deb’s Book Review, July 28

Splashes of Joy, July 28

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 29

An Author’s Take, July 30

Bizwings Blog, July 30

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 31

Miriam Jacob, August 1

Spoken from the Heart, August 1

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and paperback 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/1f7f5/mistletoe-village-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Oddball Ornaments ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Oddball Ornaments

Author: Terry Overton

Genre: Middle Grade Christmas Story

Release date: November 16, 2021

The ornaments in the attic are excited. It’s almost Turkey Day, and they know when they start smelling turkey, they’re going to be pulled down out of the attic and hung on a tree for the humans to enjoy. After all, Box Day is all about admiring the ornaments, isn’t it? But when Grandma joins them for Turkey Day instead of Box Day and brings a bunch of new ornaments with her, the Oddball Ornaments know something isn’t right. Determined to find out the source of Grandma’s sadness and what Box Day is really about, Nutcracker sets out on a quest to climb to the top of the tree to ask Angel about the true meaning of Christmas and discovers the truth is much more wonderful than they could ever have imagined.

Click here to get your copy!

As a homeschooling mother, I always appreciated finding excellent books with Christian messages and values that my children could read. This book provides the perfect book to meet those needs. Even though our youngest will turn 20 this year, I really appreciated this book.

As someone who never really fit in during middle school and high school, I could appreciate the four ornaments that labeled themselves as oddballs. They believe Turkey Day leads to them being placed on the tree so everyone can admire them on what they call Box Day. But sometimes ideas can be misguided and these ornaments find themselves in such a situation.

I loved how the ornaments came to know and understand the true meaning of Christmas, and how Jesus Christ came as a baby. As Angel conveys the message of Christmas, the Nutcracker shares it with the others. I also love watching the grandmother pray and interact with the family and through prayer with God.

So if you are looking for a Christmas book for a middle schooler in your life, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

Terry Overton is a retired university professor of educational and school psychology. She has an Ed.D. in Special Education and a Ph.D. in Psychology. Her professional experience includes teaching public school, teaching at the university level, and being a college dean. She has two children and six grandchildren. Her writing and publication experiences include textbook and journal articles in the fields of special education and school psychology. She seeks to answer God’s call to share the good news and grow the church by writing Christian books and devotionals. Her book Both Sides of the Border is a Firebird Book Award winner in the categories of Cross-Genre, Socio-Political Fiction, and Women’s Fiction. Both Sides of the Border also won the American Writing Awards in the Multicultural Fiction category, Social Change category, and a finalist for the Women’s Fiction category. Her book, America of We the People was awarded the Firebird Book Award for Socio-Political and Political categories. She and her husband live in the southern tip of Texas where they enjoy semi-tropical weather and spending time with their friends and family.

More from Terry

Oddball Ornaments: The Story of Christmas was written one late fall while I looked at my own Christmas tree. I wondered, “If the ornaments could talk, what would they say? Would they even know why they were hung on the tree?” And that was how the book began. I played Christmas music and imagined a cast of characters like toys in Toy Story but ornaments and humans. It was such fun to write. I ran a few things by my regional experts (grand Angels) and they approved. It always means so much more when family are involved in my writing projects.

Not long after the book was out, the sequel was completed, and it will be released late summer 2022. “Oddball Ornaments: The Story of Forgiveness.”

I hope you have as much fun reading it as I did writing it!

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, July 2

Inklings and notions, July 3

Lights in the Dark World, July 4

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 5

Girls in White Dresses, July 6

Older & Smarter?, July 7

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 8

For Him and My Family, July 9

deb’s Book Review, July 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 11

Mary Hake, July 11

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 12

For the Love of Literature, July 12

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, July 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 14

Blogging With Carol, July 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Terry is giving away the grand prize package 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/1f7f2/oddball-ornaments-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Blueberry Bungalow ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Blueberry Bungalow

Author: Konnie K. Viner

Genre: Fiction (Christian mystery/romance)

Release date: November 10, 2021

It’s been a year since Maci Driscoll’s husband passed unexpectedly, and she is stuck in lonely despair. As an established painter, she finds her inspiration and artistic spark is gone. In a desperate attempt to step out of her funk, Maci sells her seaside home and moves inland to a sleepy little town in Maine.

But peace and inspiration aren’t the only things she finds in Laurel Hill. The century home she buys has secrets to divulge, a long-lost couple to reunite, a murder to solve, and maybe even new love.

Click here to get your copy!

Blueberry Bungalow brings to life the story of Maci Driscoll as she tries to move on from the death of her husband a year earlier. Selling the home she shared with him prior to his death, Maci finds a lovely bungalow that overlooks a pond inland in Maine, Looking to rekindle her inspiration to paint, she finds the home suits her needs.

Her realtor becomes more than just the person who sold her the house. As the two get to know each other, secrets from Wade’s past come to light. But secrets held within the walls of Maci’s bungalow help to clear up some mysteries.

The story moved at an excellent pace. The town the story takes place in provides the perfect level of charm. I loved getting to know the characters, who,e watching the plot develop. This story proves to be the perfect book to read this summer.

With fresh starts, second chances, and even forgiveness thrown into the mix, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. So check it out for yourself.

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

About the Author

Konnie Viner is also the author of Amaryllis Journey, a 2020 Golden Scroll fiction book of the year award winner. She writes to encourage women with the assurance of God’s love and faithfulness in difficult life experiences. Her first published book is Rested Soul, Resilient Heart, Finding Hope in the Storms of Abuse and Betrayal (2017),. She holds a BS in Education from the University of Kansas and an MS in Business Management from the University of Redlands, CA. Konnie cherishes time with her three grandchildren. Her hobbies include photographing God’s beautiful creation, quilting, and reading.

More from Konnie

Blueberry Bungalow, a 2022 Selah Award Finalist, is a cozy mystery set in the blueberry fields of Maine, Recently widowed and struggling, Maci Driscoll moves from the seaside of Maine to quiet little Laurel Hill to escape the past and figure out who she is without her beloved husband. Never did she expect to find a long-lost letter, solve a decades-old murder, or fall in love, but she does.

Maci’s Blueberry Pie Recipe

Crust

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons salt

1 cup unsalted butter, cold

½ cup water

Filling

4 cups blueberries

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ cup all-purpose flour

Glaze

1 egg, beaten

coarse sugar

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425º and place a rack in the middle of the oven.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour and salt.

Add the butter and mix it into the flour using two knives or pastry blender.

Slowly add the cold water, a little at a time, and mix until the dough just comes together.

Remove the dough from the bowl and shape into 2 equal balls, flattened into discs.

Wrap each in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight.

When ready, unwrap the dough and allow it to warm up for a minute or two.

Lightly flour your surface, then roll one disc into a circle until its large enough to fit into the pie plate with an inch of overhang.

Fold the dough into fourths, then place carefully in the pie dish.

Unfold and smooth into the dish, dressing the crust however you choose (crimping, fluting, or my favorite, just pressing into it with a fork).

Fill with the blueberry filling, then roll out the remaining disc of dough and cover the blueberries entirely, making sure to cut a few slits in the top crust for steam to escape.

Lightly brush the top crust with a beaten egg, then sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to  350º and bake for an additional 45-55 minutes.

Keep an eye on the pie.

If the crust begins to brown too quickly, tent the pie with foil.

If the filling begins to bubble, you may also wish to place a baking sheet on the rack below the pie to catch any drips.

Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool.

Serve warm.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 1

An Author’s Take, July 2

Texas Book-aholic, July 3

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, July 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, July 4

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 5

Inklings and notions, July 6

For Him and My Family, July 7

deb’s Book Review, July 8

The Avid Reader, July 9

Blogging With Carol, July 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 10

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 12

Pause for Tales, July 12

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 14

Book Looks by Lisa, July 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Konnie is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and signed copy of 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/1f7f1/blueberry-bungalow-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Season of My Enemy ~ A Review & Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Season of My Enemy

Author: Naomi Musch

Genre: Christian Fiction / Historical Fiction / Romance

Release date: June 1, 2022

“Get Your Farm in the Fight” – The Realities of WWII Come to a Wisconsin Farm

Only last year, Fannie O’Brien was considered a beauty with a brain, and her future shone bright, despite the war pounding Europe. With her father’s sudden death and her brothers overseas, Fannie must now do the work of three men on their 200-acre farm—until eight German prisoners arrive and, just as Fannie feared, trouble comes too. Someone seems intent on causing “accidents,” and Fannie is certain the culprit is one of the two handsome older Germans—or possibly both. Can she manage the farm, keep the prisoners in line, and hold her family together through these turbulent times?

Click here to get your copy!

Set during the time of World War II in Wisconsin, Season of My Enemy explores the lives of Fannie O’Brien and her family along with the eight German soldiers along with their guards who come to help on the 200 acre O’Brien farm.

I loved getting to know Fannie and her family through the pages of this book. When Fannie’s mother tells her about the German prisoners coming to help on the farm, I felt Fannie’s pain. Considering her father died, and her two brothers were serving overseas, they had little choice.

When accidents started happening, Fannie attempted to figure out who was responsible. The author created a story that drew me in, and kept me reading. This story illustrates the possibilities that come when we open our hearts and minds to God’s greater plan for our lives. So check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

Naomi Musch is an award-winning author who writes from a deer farm in the pristine north woods of Wisconsin, where she and husband Jeff live as epically as God allows near the families of their five adult children. When not in the physical act of writing or spending time loving on her passel of grandchildren, she can be found plotting stories as she roams around the farm, snacks out of the garden, and relaxes in her vintage camper. Naomi is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, the Wisconsin Writers’ Association, and the Lake Superior Writers. She loves engaging with others and can be found all around social media or at her site naomimusch.com

More from Naomi

Welcome to my wilderness – that’s what it says when you pop onto my website, because so many of my books take place in rural and wilderness settings. That’s where my heart lives too. Therefore, when I decided to write a World War II story, I gravitated to the home front, to rural America, where living out the war years meant a different kind of survival.

Before this story idea came to me, I knew that prisoners of war had been held in America during part of the war years. There are a number of other wonderful WWII novels out there set in North America involving POWs, and I adore the 2005 movie Sweet Land. Yet, until looking further, I hadn’t realized that so many German soldiers were held right here in my home state of Wisconsin! In fact, thousands of prisoners were sent to work in our country’s canning factories and on our farms. How could I have grown up and never been told that there had once been a POW camp right in my home town?

In fact, there were 38 such “branch camps” just in Wisconsin alone—camps that housed workers specifically for contracting work on farms and in canneries. Workers were contracted by farmers with the army and sent to labor in the cranberry bogs, cherry orchards, apple orchards; to farms picking beans, peas, corn, and to tend the other crops. By international treaty, prisoners had to be paid for their work, so they were allowed to earn scrip in the equivalent of 80 cents per day which they could spend in camp canteens on personal items.

Bingo! There was the seed that burst through the soil of my imagination for my novel Season of My Enemy.

My heroine Fanny O’Brien is a Wisconsin farm girl who left state teacher’s college to manage her family’s farm during the war. She never imagined herself coordinating the work of eight German prisoners in the process—or what the outcome of that task would be.

I believe a great story has to reveal strong yet subtle themes in order for the characters and their plight to feel real. In Season of My Enemy, Fannie uncovers a lot of prejudice both in her own heart and as her eyes are opened to the broader sphere around her. There are all kinds of prejudice in the world, and some of it revealed in this story may surprise you. In fact, my editor and several other authors of WWII fiction who read the book all said, “I didn’t know that!” (I won’t tell you what they were referring to, because you know…spoilers.)

Season of My Enemy isn’t all about history of course. It’s a heartfelt story of a man and woman who slowly yield their hearts to love amidst unpredictable times and unusual circumstances. They begin as enemies who finally look beyond their prejudices to find they have more in common than they first thought. To overcome terrific odds, they must depend upon their faith and rest in a powerful hope that touches their own lives as well as the lives of others surrounding them.

I hope you’ll read Season of My Enemy, and be sure and pop me a note to tell me what you think!

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, June 28

Blossoms and Blessings, June 28

Inklings and notions, June 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 30

For Him and My Family, July 1

Remembrancy, July 2

Pause for Tales, July 2

deb’s Book Review, July 3

Book Looks by Lisa, July 4

Mary Hake, July 4

Betti Mace, July 5

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 6

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 7

Connie’s History Classroom, July 8

Books, Books, and More Books, July 8

Bizwings Blog, July 9

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 10

Labor Not in Vain, July 10

lakesidelivingsite, July 11

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Naomi is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a paperback 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/1f45e/season-of-my-enemy-celebration-tour-giveaway