Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Wonders of the Galaxy ~ A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book:  Wonders of the Galaxy

Author: Various Elk Lake Authors

Genre: Speculative Fiction

Release date: September 15, 2021

A series of space tales based on parables from the Holy Bible.

Click here to get your copy!

Based on parables from the Holy Bible, each story stands alone. But the collection works together in a meaningful way. From the very first story, I found myself caught up in this collection. The stories take place in space and form a collection of speculative fiction.

The great thing about this book results from readers being able to read each short story by itself. So if you only have a short bit of time, you can just read one story. Or if you desire, you can read all the stories at once. I think one of my favorite stories in the collection centers on the Parable of the Prodigal Son. However, I found all the stories worth reading. So if you enjoy speculative fiction and stories based on parables from the Bible, check out this collection 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

webJason Karpf Headshot Oct 2020

Jason William Karpf is a multitalented actor, musician, professor, and Jeopardy champion whose writing runs the gamut from true crime to speculative fiction.

aaron Gansky Pix

Aaron Gansky is an award-winning novelist and Dungeons and Dragons whiz who lives for his children, coaching football, and watch Marvel movies.

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Erica Marie Hogan’s books range from long ago historical dramas to frozen fantasies on faraway planets. Regardless of where the story originates, it comes from the heart—because Erica believes genres are transcendent.

Brett

Brett Heaston is the creator of the Message to Kings podcast and the author of The Resilience Awakening. He lives in the Pacific Northwest, a history nerd, and an adventure junkie.

correct size Steve South headshot for QSF

Steve South is a traveler, a karaoke singer, and a profound believer in the power for stories to move people; his first novel, The Queen of Steel and Fire, won the 2019 Minnesota Author Project Award for YA fiction.

L. G. Westlake Author Pic

L.G. Westlake lives in the “Land of Enchantment,” but also lives a dream life in far-flung galaxies where she regularly charts the unknown; her previous novels have included award-winning fantasies and thrillers.

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M B Dahl is a wife, mother, and award-winning author of dystopian adventures. She loves dressing up like a warrior and fighting dragons, imaginary or real.

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T.E. Bradford is an international bestselling author, a Selah award finalist, and a self-proclaimed geek who believes her writing is “a little piece of magic” given to her by God.

Travis W inman

Travis W. Inman has been a cowboy, a missionary, a soldier, and more in his multi-storied career, and his stories reflect his diverse background. In his spare time, he searches for hidden treasure, both financial and culinary.

More from the Editor

WHY A CHRISTIAN SPACE OPERA?

“What do you like to read,” I asked my seventeen-year-old grandson.

When he said he likes Space Opera, I had to admit I was lost. I love Science Fiction but didn’t know Space Opera was different. After ordering him a book, I started doing some research. Phrases like, “wildly popular” spoke to me.

Christians use a variety of fiction genres to reach their audiences. I wondered if we were losing younger readers because we are not being relevant to what interests them. Could this genre be presented in a way to encourage young readers to see new truths in the Bible?

Space Opera is a subgenre of science fiction and usually emphasizes space warfare, melodramatic space adventures, or chivalric romance. These themes, while occurring in outer space, will feature such elements as faster-than-light travel, futuristic weapons, and sophisticated technology.

Not surprising this genre is popular with kids today whose lives evolve around the latest technological advancement.

The name is a takeoff from “soap opera” because of its melodramatic presentation. Space operas emerged in the 1930s and continue to be produced in literature, film, comics, television, and video games.

As I pondered these concepts, an idea developed to present a Space Opera anthology, aimed at high school level, to use the parables as inspiration behind the stories. When I presented the idea to my publisher, I received an enthusiastic nod of approval. And the rest is history.

We are confident young people will enjoy these highly imaginative stories penned by some of Elk Lake’s best authors. Each story contains a synopsis of the related parable and how the parable is used in the telling of the story. Additionally, each story has an engaging graphic to whet the imagination.

To our knowledge, this is new for Christian publishing. We look forward to our readers’ comments and to Wonders of the Galaxy II in 2022.

Linda Wood Rondeau

Project Manager

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 18

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 18

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 19

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 20

Cats in the Cradle Blog, October 20

Texas Book-aholic, October 21

Inklings and notions, October 22

By the Book, October 22

A Reader’s Brain, October 23

For Him and My Family, October 24

April Hayman, Author, October 24

deb’s Book Review, October 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 26

Blogging With Carol, October 26

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 27

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

Blossoms and Blessings, October 28

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 29

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 30

Pause for Tales, October 30

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 31

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, the Various Elk Lake Authors are giving away the grand prize package of a book from each author in the anthology!! (Format may vary for each 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/122a1/wonders-of-the-galaxy-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Penelope’s Pursuit ~ A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book:  Penelope’s Pursuit

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Historical Romantic Suspense

Release date: June 29, 2021

Are mail-order-brides changing their minds or is something sinister going on in Kansas?

Ten years ago, Penelope’s sister ran away as a mail-order bride, and it was the last their family ever heard from her.  Now, with their parents dead and Penelope all alone, the young woman has one goal. Find her sister.

It took enough grit for Henry to write to Miss Mildred Crenshaw about finding him a wife in the first place, but when the stage arrives and no bride steps off, the whole thing feels like a confidence scheme. Investigation, however, sends chills down his spine as he realizes women are leaving the east for the west but many never arrive at their destinations.

Is it any wonder that Penelope doesn’t trust the man who abducts her from the clutches of her new friends and rides off into the sunset? Is his explanation reasonable?  Can she convince him to help her find her sister?

And is she about to fall in love with a homesteader on the untamed prairies of Kansas?

Click here to get your copy!

Having read other books in the Westward Homes and Hearts Mail-Order Bride series, I looked forward to reading Penelope’s Pursuit by Chautona Havig. She has a way of writing stories where the characters come to life, and the reader discovers she can not put the book down. I found myself in this situation with this book. In this historical Christian fiction book, Penelope comes west as a mail-order bride. On the train, a couple befriends her who seem harmless, but appearances can be deceiving. Upon leaving the train, she finds herself taken by a man.

He had sent for a mail-order bride from the same agency, but his bride never arrived. He attempts to discover what happened to her. Penelope and Henry work together to discover what happened to his bride-to-be as well as Penelope’s sister. This book took twists and turns that kept my interest. If you enjoy stories that cannot live up to a simple happily ever after, check out this book. I am sure it will not disappoint. The way Ms. Havig keeps the story moving along and creates characters that draw the reader in lives up to my expectations. 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

Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

More from Chautona

Mail Order Brides: Do We Romanticize the Past?

Although I recall reading about mail-order brides in school… somewhere… Patricia MacLachlan’s Sarah, Plain and Tall was my first introduction to the idea of advertising for or requesting the services of a matchmaker to find a wife. The book and the subsequent movie showed the difficulties of such a marriage and left us all with a satisfactory ending.

Some years later, while doing a bit of research, I discovered another side of the coin—a horrifying picture of what happened to some gullible young women and the unscrupulous people who used such matchmaking schemes as a means for human trafficking. It sickened me, as it should anyone.

All my ideas for mail order bride novels ended up as wadded up balls of mental paper and in the wastepaper basket of my mind. A few years passed, and I came up with a twist on mail order brides, one that will see the light of day if I ever have time to write it. A few more years passed, and a series of books featuring a matchmaking service for mail-order brides and the Homestead Act resurrected those ideas. I smoothed a couple out, reconsidered, and decided against writing them.

I’d have to miss the opportunity to join the series.

My mind never does follow orders well. Within minutes of that decision, I had a story. What would happen if there was some funny business going on with girls going west? How could I combine a satisfactory ending where two people came to a meeting of the minds and hearts in the midst of fighting something that ugly?

Penelope’s Pursuit was born.

Is my story idealized? Probably. I’ll be frank with you. I’m okay with that, too. See, sometimes all we need is a reminder that mankind is sinful and in need of a Savior before the story turns into how things should have been. After all, fiction mirrors reality, but it is also an escape.

I hope Penelope’s escape to the west and her pursuit of her sister encourages you to turn to the Lord for every decision, in every trouble, and with every praise possible in between.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9

Blogging With Carol, October 9

Texas Book-aholic, October 10

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 11

Inklings and notions, October 11

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 12

Lots of Helpers, October 13

For Him and My Family, October 13

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 14

deb’s Book Review, October 15

Joanne Markey, October 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 16

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 17

Mary Hake, October 17

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

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 18

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 19

Vicky Sluiter, October 19

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 20

Connie’s History Classroom, October 21

Blossoms and Blessings, October 21

Splashes of Joy, October 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of $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/11fe1/penelope-s-pursuit-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

The Postman’s Lantern ~ A Review and Giveaway

Postman's Lantern

About the Book

Book:  The Postman’s Lantern

Author: J.C. Comerford

Genre: Christian Children’s Fiction, Christmas

Release date: January 8, 2020

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During a devastating Christmas Eve snowstorm, John the postman arrives at his last stop, at the steps of the Frost family. Here, he rediscovers a stowaway letter in his mailbag, not for his route. It’s a letter from a hospitalized grandfather, to a very special grandson. John feels obligated to make the delivery. His unselfish act of kindness leads him, and then the Frost family, on an unforgettable journey across a seemingly endless track of farmland. Little does John know what he’s actually carrying. The lantern he carries becomes a mystery that guides their way through astonishing events. They finally arrive at the Evans house, where they find themselves before an extremely sick boy, a mother’s pain, and the mystical workings of God.

Click here to get your copy!

Imagine you and your family find yourselves in your home on Christmas Eve during a fierce snowstorm. The family dog disappears, and as you all look for the dog, you see a super bright light in the storm. The Frost family finds themselves in that exact situation. When John, the postman, comes to their house to deliver their mail, the dog appears with him. When he discovers a letter not from his route, the Frosts tell him how to get to the address of the letter. But the storm makes things rough.

From fields to a perfectly placed wagon to a church and to animals and more, John and the entire Frost family witness the miracles of God. John delivers the letter at the perfect time according to God’s will. So if you enjoy heart-warming and touching stories centered on God, Jesus, and Christmas, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

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John Charles Comerford grew up playing hard, on the streets and fields of Washington Township, New Jersey. He attended Our Lady of Good Counsel Grammar School through 8th grade. He then jumped across the street to attend Westwood High School, where he soon began playing guitar and composing songs at the age of sixteen. Writing short musical stories would soon turn into a more involved field of composition, as he later attended Bergen Community College in Paramus, NJ. Here, he developed a desire to become a paperback writer. While attending college, he took a job with the US Postal Service as a mail carrier and is still delivering, thirty years later. He is still a performing musician and a recording artist on itunes. He now resides in Pawling, New York with his wife Bridget and his son Jack.

More from John Charles

I was just a little kid at the time. The temperature outside was 93 degrees.  I had awakened earlier that day, because it was a Saturday. I wanted to catch some early morning cartoons, instead of lying in bed, waiting for my dad to give out chores for the day. I knew it was going to be a hot one, and I dreaded going outside.

Before long, there I was slapping paint on the side of my house. Soon after, I was weeding and watering the front lawn before it reached into the 90’s. At about 12:00, I went inside to cool off. I ate some lunch and relaxed a bit, listening to the “Boston Pops” my dad had put on.

From a calm and collective state of mind, I was suddenly burdened by the noise of my barking dog, at the front window. I went to the front door and opened it wide. As I looked up, the mailman was looking down. His face was dripping sweat, and his uniform was soaked. He had a big smile and said, “Too hot to play today.” He laughed a bit and handed me the mail. I heard my mom and dad yell out “Thank you, do you need a cold drink at all?” He said “I’m all set but thank you.” He moved on, while adjusting that full bag of mail that he was carrying around his shoulders.

It was then that I decided I would never become a mailman. God, no, not this kid. That was no easy job.

14 years later, I was working for the post office, with a packed satchel around my neck, and a can of pepper spray, to boot. I was now walking that mile, in my old mailman’s boots. Many times I’ve prayed to God for help and to keep me from dozing off in trucks that reached 120 degrees inside. I prayed for help from dog attacks that would occur five times a day at least. I prayed for help from the pain you feel when it’s 30 degrees to 20 below and you’re soaked from rain. Your fingers are ready to fall off after being soaked from the rain or as they burn to the bone.

So I wrote my book, seeking the world’s attention to the mail carrier’s integrity, and a forever caring attitude to those who patiently await their arrival.

Blog Stops

Christian Bookaholic, October 7

Pause for Tales, October 8

For the Love of Literature, October 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 10

lakesidelivingsite, October 10

Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 11 (Guest Post from Marilyn Ridgway)

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 12

Mary Hake, October 12

Girls in White Dresses, October 13

Texas Book-aholic, October 13

Inklings and notions, October 14

Vicky Sluiter, October 15

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 15

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 16

To Everything There Is A Season, October 16

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 17

deb’s Book Review, October 17

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 18

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 18

Cats in the Cradle Blog, October 19

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 19

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 20

For Him and My Family, October 20

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, John Charles is giving away the grand prize package for a $50 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/11fdd/the-postman-s-lantern-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Fiction

Personal Threat ~ A Review and Giveaway

personal threat

About the Book

Book: Personal Threat

Author: Kimberly Rose Johnson

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Christmas

Release date: September 21, 2021

AMZ KIMBERLY ROSE JOHNSON PERSONAL THREAT Cover

Bodyguard Sally Wilson has become the target. Can she save her own life as well as her daughter’s?

Christmas is supposed to be the happiest time of the year, but when Sally’s young daughter, Emma, becomes the target of child traffickers, and the little girl’s biological father wants Sally dead, the Christmas season takes a dark turn.

Police officer, Dillon Brady, responds to a call for help at the home of his friend and Protection Inc. bodyguard, Sally Wilson. When their relationship tips beyond friendship, Dillon is determined no one will hurt Sally or her daughter again. Will his resolve be enough?

Sally is drawn to Dillon. He’s a natural with Emma and appears to care about both of them. Sally’s been fooled before by a man she believed loved her, but what if it’s an act? Can Sally learn to trust again and follow her heart, or will Dillon get relegated to the friend zone?

Click here to get your copy!

From the very first book about Protection, Inc., I fell in love with the company, the employees, and those they protect. In this book, we learn more about Sally, a former police officer turned Protection, Inc. employee, her daughter Emma, and police officer Dillon.

This book provides the last book in the series, and I have to say I will miss these characters. I feel Kimberley Rose Johnson did an excellent job exploring human trafficking in this book. With a biological father on the hunt to steal his daughter, Sally and Dillon work to keep her safe.

Other familiar characters from the series, including Frank, Carissa, Kyle, and more, appeared in this book, making it a fitting conclusion. So check out this book and the others about Protection, Inc. for yourself. But be sure to read the books in order.

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

About the Author

Cropped Publicity photo 2018

Award winning author Kimberly Rose Johnson married her college sweetheart and lives in the Pacific Northwest. From a young child Kimberly has been an avid reader. That love of reading fostered a creative mind and led to her passion for writing. She especially loves romance and writes contemporary romance and romantic mystery and suspense with a heart.

Kimberly holds a degree in Behavioral Science from Northwest University in Kirkland, Washington, and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.

You can sign up for Kimberly’s newsletter via her website at: https://kimberlyrjohnson.com/

More from Kimberly

Every year since I signed the contract for my debut novel, a book set at Christmastime, I have made it a goal to write a Christmas book, usually a novella. This year, Personal Threat is that book.

I wrapped up the series with Personal Threat. My husband came up with the title for this one because the threat in this book is very personal for one of the Protection Inc. team members.

We first met Sally in book two of the series and it seemed only fitting she starred in a book of her own. We also get to know Dillon better in this book which for me was super fun to write. He’s played an important and growing role as the series has progressed and is one of my favorite characters in the series.

Blog Stops

CarpeDiem, October 14

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 14

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 15

Worthy2Read, October 15

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 16

Bigreadersite, October 16

Blossoms and Blessings, October 17

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, October 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 18

Betti Mace, October 19

Daysong Reflections, October 19

An Author’s Take, October 20

The Sacred Line, October 20

Inklings and notions, October 21

For Him and My Family, October 21

Blogging With Carol, October 22

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, October 22

Texas Book-aholic, October 23

deb’s Book Review, October 23

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 24

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 24

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 25

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 25

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 26

Mary Hake, October 26

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kimberly 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/12297/personal-threat-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Carmen’s Journey of Courage ~ A Review and Giveaway

Carmen's Journey

About the Book

Book: Carmen’s Journey of Courage

Author: Susan K Beatty

Genre: Christian Women’s Fiction

Release date: September 14, 2021

Carmen's Journey of Courage lighter

Truly the odd woman out, Army weapons expert Carmen belongs to a family where PhDs are almost a second surname.

Oh, and she’s also persona non grata since that one little incident back in her teens.  The one that her Tia Graviella still hasn’t forgiven her for. The one her parents and siblings will never let her forget.

A trip to Mexico City, complete with a bit of groveling at Tia Graviella’s feet, might just be what it takes to gain forgiveness and a fresh start with her family. Not only that, her tia is ailing, and someone needs to check up on her.  Carmen can solve two problems with one would-do-anything-to-avoid-it trip.

Something is off, however, and as Carmen investigates, she begins to wonder if there’s more to her aunt’s troubles than ill health.

When Carmen sets her course on making things right, will it repair more than the wreckage from a youthful miscalculation?

Click here to get your copy!

Sometimes our perspective clouds the truth and affects our future lives. Sometimes, we may compare ourselves to others in our family and finding ourselves lacking. Carmen finds herself in such a predicament. Many years ago an incident occurred that changed Carmen’s life. As a military weapons expert, she finds herself sent to Mexico to find out what is going on with her aunt.

I loved getting to know Carmen, her aunt, and those working for her aunt. Sometimes, first impressions lead to correct assumptions, and Carmen’s instincts lead her to protect her aunt. With robberies, break-ins and more, this book will keep you reading. 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

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“Courage: The intersection of faith and Grit”

Susan K. Beatty is passionate about finding courage through faith and grit, particularly through the trials of breast cancer. Her daughter is a metastatic breast cancer “thriver” and has been an inspiration for her writing. Susan retired from a full-time job in 2017 and is now pursuing a novel-writing career. Her first novel, “Faces of Courage,” is in revision. Susan is the author of “An Introduction to Home Education” (AKA “California Homeschool Manual”), was the assistant director of the SoCal Christian Writers’ Conference and is the president of her local ACFW-OC Chapter. She is a professional writer/journalist. Susan is proof you can begin a fiction writing career after age seventy.

More from Susan

Have you ever known in your heart you needed to ask someone to forgive you, but the thought scared you so much you were convinced they would reject you? So scared you couldn’t bring yourself to ask?

Sometimes we are more fearful of man than God, conveniently ignoring the responsibility to be right with others and to live in peace. It’s hard to live in peace when that thing, that whatever it was we need to apologize for, is lying like a lump of toxic waste in our hearts.

In Carmen’s Journey of Courage, Carmen ignored her need to ask for forgiveness for years. Well, she didn’t really ignore it, she just kept burying it every time she thought of it. Which was often.

It took an outside force to get her positioned in such a way that she had to face the situation.

Carmen is the odd woman out in her family. Every one of her siblings possesses enough educational degrees to wallpaper a room. But not Carmen. Her two older sisters’ treatment of her pushed Carmen in the opposite direction and toward a desire to find her own way on her own terms. Instead of college, Carmen enlisted and excelled in the army.

As God sometimes does, He uses the exact person Carmen would prefer to avoid—her oldest sister—to get her to Mexico City and their great aunt. Circumstances are not what she expects. She needs to face more than her tía and solve a mystery with the aid of her army training.

It’s a journey of courage.

We all face tough decisions. I wrote Carmen’s Journey of Courage to inspire bravery when life is hard.

Find your courage at the intersection of faith and grit.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 1

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 2

lakesidelivingsite, October 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 3

Inklings and notions, October 4

For Him and My Family, October 5

deb’s Book Review, October 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 7

Betti Mace, October 8

Splashes of Joy, October 8

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 9

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 10

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 11

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 12

An Author’s Take, October 12

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 13

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Susan is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and 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/11dcb/carmen-s-journey-of-courage-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

A Life Redeemed ~ A Review and Giveaway

A Life Redeemed

About the Book

Book:  A Life Redeemed

Author: Olivia Rae

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: June 16, 2021

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Everyone has a secret, who can a queen trust?

Upon Queen Elizabeth’s order, Audrey Hayes travels to the borderlands of Scotland to learn where the fierce Laird Armstrong’s loyalties lie. Is he aligned with his mother’s English roots in support of the queen, or does he hold with the beliefs of his father, who wishes to see Mary of Scots on the English throne? The fate of Audrey’s family rests on her success in finding the answer.

After losing his lands in a wager and being betrayed by his kin, Gavin Armstrong entered a loveless marriage to obtain the funds to buy back his family home, Warring Tower. Now a widower, struggling against countless border wars, he is on the verge of losing his home and lands again. With few resources, he reluctantly makes another risky wager, one he cannot hope to win without trusting the secretive Audrey Hayes, a woman he suspects is an English spy.

As the two work together to save Warring Tower, their attraction to one another grows. But when Audrey finally gains the information she seeks for Queen Elizabeth, she realizes that the only way she can save her family is to betray the man she loves.

Click here to get your copy!

This historical work of fiction centers around Queen Elizabeth sending Audrey to determine the loyalties of Gavin Armstrong. Sparks fly between the couple from the very beginning. Everyone keeps secrets that have the potential to create wars and more. I loved seeing the interactions between Audrey and Gavin’s son Thomas.

As the second book in the Secrets of the Queen series, I definitely recommend reading the two books in order. The twists and turns this storyline takes create a captivating story. So if you enjoy reading works of historical works of fiction based on real events with some liberty taken, 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

RAE 16 - 500x500px

Olivia Rae is an award-winning author of historical and contemporary inspirational romance. She spent her school days dreaming of knights, princesses and far away kingdoms; it made those long, boring days in the classroom go by much faster. Nobody was more shocked than her when she decided to become a teacher. Besides getting her Master’s degree, marrying her own prince, and raising a couple of kids, Olivia decided to breathe a little more life into her childhood stories by adding in what she’s learned as an adult living in a small town on the edge of a big city. When not writing, she loves to travel, dragging her family to old castles and forts all across the world.  

Olivia is the winner of the Angel Award, Book Buyers Best Award, Golden Quill Award, New England Readers’ Choice Award, Southern Magic Contest, and the American Fiction Award. She is an Illumination Award Gold and Bronze medalist. She has also been a finalist in many other contests such as the National Readers’ Choice Awards, and the National Romance Fiction Awards. She is currently hard at work on her next novel.

More from Olivia

My novel, A Life Redeemed takes place in 16th Century England and Scotland. A very popular dish at the time was the meat pie. Back then making such a dish took a lot of time. My Grandmother made a similar dish with modern day ingredients that you can whip together in no time. Cheesy meat pie is a real family pleaser and a delicious bit of history.

Medieval Cheesy Meat Pie

1 pound ground beef

½ cup chopped onion

1 – 8 oz. can of tomato sauce

¼ cup parsley

1 – 3oz. can chopped mushrooms (drained)

1/8 teaspoon pepper

¼ teaspoon dried oregano

2 packages (8 rolls) crescent rolls

3 eggs

Shredded cheese (mixed cheddar and mozzarella)

In skillet, brown beef, onion (drain). Stir in tomato sauce, parsley, mushrooms, pepper and oregano, then set aside. Unroll one package of crescent rolls, forming 12×6 inch rectangle. Seal edges and perforations together.  Roll to fit in 9-inch pie plate, trim. Separate one egg and set aside the yoke. Beat egg white with remaining two eggs. Spread over half the dough. Spoon meat into shell, arranging cheese on top. Pour remaining egg mixture over cheese. Roll out second package of crescent rolls, sealing on top of pie. Beat remaining egg yoke and a tablespoon of water, brush on top of dough. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes. If pastry gets too brown, cover with foil. Let stand for 10 minutes.

Blog Stops

Pause for Tales, October 9

Labor Not in Vain, October 9

Artistic Nobody, October 10 (Spotlight)

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 11

Genesis 5020, October 11

Bigreadersite, October 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 13

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 14

Texas Book-aholic, October 15

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 16

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 16

deb’s Book Review, October 17

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 18

Connie’s History Classroom, October 19

Mary Hake, October 19

Inklings and notions, October 20

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 21

For Him and My Family, October 22

Betti Mace, October 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Olivia 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/11fe0/a-life-redeemed-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

A Heart’s Forever Home ~ A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Heart’s Forever Home

Author: Lena Nelson Dooley

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: August 17, 2021

A single lawyer whose clients think he needs a wife.

A woman who needs a forever home…or a forever family…or a forever love.

Although Traesa Killdare is a grown woman now, the discovery that her adoption wasn’t finalized sends her reeling. Especially when her beloved grandmother dies and the only siblings she’s ever known exile her from the family property without a penny to her name.

Wilson Pollard works hard for the best interest of his law clients, even those who think a marriage would make him more “suitable” in his career. And when the beloved granddaughter of a recently deceased client comes to him for help, he knows he must do whatever necessary to make her situation better.

As each of their circumstances worsen, a marriage of convenience seems the only answer for both. Traesa can’t help but fall for her new husband—the man who’s given her both his home and his name. But what will it take for Wilson to realize he loves her? Will a not-so-natural disaster open his eyes and heart?

Click here to get your copy!

Traesa Kildare finds herself forced from the place she has called home since arriving in Fort Worth on an orphan train by the man she called her brother. Wilson Pollard serves as the family’s lawyer and finds himself tasked with keeping Traesa, her sisters, and the estate safe. I loved discovering how the relationship between Traesa and Wilson moved from client/lawyer to a marriage of convenience to much more. The author created an amazing storyline that kept my interest.

The story took twists and turns that kept my interest. My only desire would be to read more about Traesa, Wilson, as well as the rest of the characters in this story. 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

Lena Nelson Dooley has been an author for 36 years. Her 51st book released in June 2020. Raised in Arkansas, she married a Texan 56 years ago. They have lived in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex for decades. She is an active member of ACFW and one of the founding members the DFW local chapter. She’s often been a speaker for other writers’ groups and conferences, both as a keynote speaker and a workshop teacher. Her fans love reading her books filled with characters who grip your heart.

More from Lena

I’ve been a lover of history for decades. In college and graduate school, all my elective courses were history. Of course, I chose the countries and eras I wanted to learn about. When I began writing novels, my first one was a contemporary story. After that at least 75% or more of my novels have been historical, all the way from 1805 through the early 20th century.

One of the hallmarks of my historical novels is the authenticity I write into the stories. Because of the amount of research I’ve done over the years, I’m kind of an expert in 19th century history. My characters and their stories are completely fictional, but the other things in the book are mostly true. I search until I find what I need to know or until I reach a complete dead end.

The history of the orphan trains has interested me since I first learned about them. One of them ended in Fort Worth where a pastor and his wife helped find the last orphans a home. A few didn’t get a home, so they took them in. In the 20th century that became an orphanage, then a home for unwed mothers.

A Heart’s Forever Home has three settings—Fort Worth, Texas; Waco, Texas; and New York City. It’s a Marriage of Convenience story and much more. This is another type of story I like to read and I like to write. Finding a different reason for the necessity of the marriage is interesting.

I’d found an event that occurred north of Waco in 1896. It was so bizarre I wanted to include it in a book. It was a perfect fit for this story and became an important catalyst in the story.

I’m what’s called in the industry a seat-of-the-pants author, more or less. I do have the complete outline of the story in my head. When I sit down to write, I know where I’m going, but I don’t have every single scene plotted out as some authors do. And I pray… a lot. During the time I’m writing a book, God drops ideas into my thought processes. Not just while I’m writing, but other times, too. That’s the exciting thing about writing. This keeps it fresh for me.

When you’ve finished reading this story, I hope you’ll let me know what you think of it. I really like getting reader feedback.

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 12

Maureen’s Musings, October 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 13

The Book Chic Blog, October 13

Texas Book-aholic, October 14

deb’s Book Review, October 14

Bizwings Blog, October 15

Reviewingbooksplusmore, October 15

By the Book, October 16

Kathleen’s Book Review, October 16

lakesidelivingsite, October 17

For Him and My Family, October 17

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 19

Inklings and notions, October 19

Vicky Sluiter, October 20

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 20

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 22

Joanna Bair, October 22

Bigreadersite, October 23

Mary Hake, October 23

Connie’s History Classroom, October 24

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 24

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 25

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Lena 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/11fe3/a-heart-s-forever-home-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Elite ~ A Review and Giveaway

Elite

About the Book

Book: Elite

Author: Kristen Young

Genre: Dystopian/Science Fiction

Release date: September 14, 2021

Young - Elite(1)

Where do you find safety when your world is falling apart?

Apprentice Flick thought the Elite Academy was the answer to all her problems. But the revelation of her past turned everything upside down. Now, she is caught between two worlds set on a collision course.

Will she embrace the chaotic memories that flood her every waking moment? Or will she run to the security of her Elite training?

Discovering her parents’ identities takes her to a secret underground bunker where she finds new friends, opportunities, and maybe even love. But Flick must decide where her allegiances lie soon, or the Triumph of Love festival might bring about her demise.

Click here to get your copy!

The continuation of the book Apprentice, Elite chronicles the journeys of Kerr Flick as she regains her memories, trains as a Watcher and becomes a Siren. Taking the reader on quite a journey, these books definitely need to be read in order. Establishing the idea that sometimes enemies masquerade as friends. The storyline of these two books kept my interest. I loved discovering Kerr’s past as Cadence along with her family.

Kerr/Cadence finds the way to deal with her restored memories. As a Watcher, she is the elite of the elite. If you enjoy dystopian books, check out Apprentice and Elite 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

kyoungbw

A Scottish-born Australian author, Kristen Young has worked in children’s and youth ministry for decades. She writes fiction and non-fiction for teens, and always has a notebook on hand to capture stray story ideas. In her spare time she loves hanging out with her family, watching movies with subtitles, and enjoying a little too much chocolate.

More from Kristen

“Fairy tales do not tell children the dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.” ― G.K. Chesterton.

Why do we write fiction? There are lots of reasons, really. We write because we have something
to say. Maybe we write because we just love creating stories. Perhaps we love to entertain. Or
perhaps we write because the stories want to be heard, and we’re just letting them fly.


Or perhaps we know that people want stories for a deeper reason. When life is hard, and work
is a struggle, and the world seems just a little too difficult, it’s a great time to escape into a
different place. Another world, where even though bad things happen, we know there will be a
happy ending.


The responsibility of authors is a heavy one. Our readers entrust their imaginations to us for a
short time, allowing us to draw them into a different place. We give them people to follow, and
let them see the world through other eyes. Dilemmas, threats, relationships and opportunities
— all of these things provide a journey for readers, and give them the chance to explore
alternate ways of dealing with life’s problems. We give people the thrill of knowing that even
under the heaviest challenges, there is a chance to grow and survive.


Chesterton said that children didn’t need to learn about dragons, but to know the dragons could
be overcome. Perhaps even as adults we need a little bit of that, too.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, September 30

Artistic Nobody, September 30 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 1

Inklings and notions, October 2

Inside the Wong Mind, October 2

For Him and My Family, October 3

deb’s Book Review, October 4

Library Lady Kid’s Lit, October 5

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

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 6

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 7

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

Blogging With Carol , October 8

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 9

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 10

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 11

Worthy2Read, October 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 12

Through the fire blogs, October 13

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kristen 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/11dca/elite-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

End-Time Shaking and Revival ~ A Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: End-Time Shaking and Revival

Author: Guillermo Maldonado

Genre: RELIGION / Christian Theology/Eschatology

Release date: October 5, 2021

Shaking…Then Revival…Then Harvest!

The end times are unfolding before our eyes.

First, there will be unprecedented shakings.

Today, the world is shaking in alarming ways. And this is just the beginning. Nations, institutions, economies, families, individuals, the earth’s environment, the cosmos, the spiritual realm—in every dimension and sphere of life, we will see powerful waves of shaking that disrupt the course of our lives and take away our false sense of security in earthly resources, compelling us to return to our Creator.

The main purpose of these shakings is to judge the people of the world for their sin and rebellion against God. Yet God is using the shaking we are now experiencing to refine believers so we will be purified to become the remnant that is ready for Jesus’s imminent appearing.

Second, there will be unprecedented revival.

As we respond to the shaking with repentance and wholehearted devotion to God, we will be prepared to take an active role in the coming last-days revival in which God’s sovereign glory will be revealed! There will be an all-inclusive supernatural movement characterized by miracles, healings, salvations, financial provision, prophetic visions, renewed holiness, powerful worship, strong discipleship, and profound love.

Finally, there will be an unprecedented harvest of souls with global impact!

The Holy Spirit will empower the church to reach the lost with the demonstration of miracles, signs, and wonders. Millions of people worldwide will come to genuine repentance, surrendering their hearts to the Lord Jesus.

In End-Time Shaking and Revival, best-selling author Guillermo Maldonado expands on last-days themes introduced in his previous books, revealing how to…

  • Avoid God’s judgment
  • Respond correctly to the divine shakings in your life and in the world
  • Be revived and continuously filled with the Spirit
  • Participate in the worldwide harvest
  • Move in supernatural power

We must understand God’s cycle of end-time events so we can align our lives with His momentous purposes in these last days!

Click here to get your copy!
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End-Time Shaking and Revival discusses how events including COVID-19 illustrate how the end time draws closer. Each chapter includes Scripture references, a prayer, along with explanations of why believers of God and Jesus Christ need to wake up and stand up to show their belief.

While I agree with many of the author’s points, I feel this book also promotes his ministry, King Jesus Ministry, a bit too much for me. But I believe this book deserves to be read and the passages of Scriptures 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

Active in ministry for over twenty years, Apostle Guillermo Maldonado is the founder of King Jesus International Ministry—one of the fastest-growing multicultural churches in the United States—which has been recognized for its visible manifestations of God´s supernatural power. King Jesus Ministry currently has a membership of more than 25,000, including the main church in Miami, Florida, its campuses, its daughter churches, and its online church. Apostle Maldonado is also a spiritual father to 500 churches in 70 countries, which form the Supernatural Global Network, representing more than 750,000 people. In addition, he is the founder of the University of the Supernatural Ministry (USM). Apostle Maldonado has a doctorate in Christian counseling and a master’s degree in practical theology.

More from Guillermo

The end times are unfolding before our eyes. First, there will be unprecedented shakings in every dimension and sphere of life. Second, there will be unprecedented revival. Finally, there will be an unprecedented harvest of souls with global impact! The Holy Spirit will empower the church to reach the lost with the demonstration of many signs and wonders. In End-Time Shaking and Revival, best-selling author Guillermo Maldonado explains how to respond to God’s cycle of end-time events so we can align our lives with His momentous purposes in these last days!

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 12

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 13

Fiction Book Lover, October 14 (Spotlight)

Inklings and notions, October 15

Simple Harvest Reads, October 16 (Spotlight)

For Him and My Family, October 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 17

Texas Book-aholic, October 18

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 20

Artistic Nobody, October 21 (Spotlight)

deb’s Book Review, October 21

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 22

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 23

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 24

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Guillermo is giving away the grand prize package of a $20 Starbucks gift card and 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/11fe2/end-time-shaking-and-revival-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Uncategorized

More than a Heartthrob ~ A Review and Giveaway

Heartthrob

About the Book

Book: More Thank A Heartthrob

Author: Kari Trumbo

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release date: September 28, 2021

Trumbo_More_Than_a_Heartthrob

Whoever said beauty is only skin deep lied. Beauty begins from within.

Jazzy is comfortable in her own skin, but the world cringes at it. Her personal armor since her teen years, makeup hides the scars that make anyone who sees them wince. The true test of any friend is: will they accept her without it?

Chris races to Hooper Island to escape a life-altering situation. The only person he knows and can trust there is a woman he met once. It wasn’t a good meeting. Lost and lonely after being the center of attention in Hollywood, he won’t risk losing the one friend he has.

Befriending Chris poses a risk Jazzy is loath to take. If anyone will reject her for her scars, it’ll be a guy whose life is focused on beauty. But as she helps him work through his own problems and his struggles with faith, will she gather the courage to pluck the plank from her own eye?

Once alone and vulnerable, will Jazzy and Chris rely on one another? Or will the force of their polar opposite lives push them apart—for good.

More Than a Heartthrob continues the Hooper Island stories of 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!

Chris is a Hollywood movie star who finds himself caught up in a terrible situation involving a female star and his Hollywood home. His publicist provides him with poor advice to flee the situation.. So he takes off to his family’s estate on Hooper Island.

Jazzy feels comfortable in her own skin, but recognizes her appearance makes others uncomfortable. As the two connect, will Chris pass Jazzy’s test? As the two navigate their friendship along with Chris discovering his need for God and discovering a faith, they also discover new directions for their own careers. So check out this next book in the Independence Islands series.

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

About the Author

kari

Kari writes swoony heroes and places that become characters with detail and heart.
Her favorite place to write about is the place her heart lives, (even if she doesn’t) South Dakota.

Kari loves reading, listening to contemporary Christian music, singing when no one’s listening, and curling up near the wood stove when winter hits. She makes her home in central Minnesota, land of frigid toes and mosquitoes the size of compact cars, with her husband of over twenty years. They have two daughters, two sons, one cat, and one hungry wood stove.

More from Kari

Hello Readers!

Welcome to the blog tour for More than a Heartthrob. I hope you’ve had a chance to read about the book a little. Thank you to today’s blog host and to Celebrate Lit for the tour and for publishing this great set.

Have you ever walked into a room and felt like everyone was staring at you for whatever reason? For me, it’s my weight. I’ve been overweight since my second year of marriage when I made a personal (and poor) decision to take a medication that made me gain a lot of weight quickly. And because of back pain, I’ve never been successful in shedding it.

For Jasmine (Jazzy), it’s her scars and lack of hair that she hides under makeup and wigs. She’s carefully kept them a secret her entire life. Only her friends and family know. She even has a beauty vlog (video blog) where she talks about faith and gives beauty tips.

But she isn’t happy. She’s lonely because it’s all fake. The skin she shows the world isn’t hers. I know I feel like that sometimes when I hide behind baggy clothes or sit behind a table so no one can really see me.

But, do people really think in their heads what we think they are? All that worry is spent, but it is fruitful? The answer to that, is no. Do some people judge us on our looks, behavior, or faith? Absolutely, but this book challenges the view that people “always” do.

Jazzy is challenged to forgo what she thinks makes her beautiful, it’s a twist on the old beauty and the beast story and I think you’re going to enjoy it. Especially because the guy who believes in her most, is the one society says should be the most critical, a Hollywood actor.

I hope, if you’re one of those people who wishes for a tall plant to hide behind when you’re in a crowded room, that you’ll find a kindred spirit in Jazzy.

Kari

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 2

Blossoms and Blessings, October 2

lakesidelivingsite, October 3

Texas Book-aholic, October 3

She Lives To Read, October 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 4

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 5

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

Inklings and notions, October 6

CarpeDiem, October 6

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, October 7

SusanLovesBooks, October 7

For Him and My Family, October 7

Connect in Fiction, October 8

deb’s Book Review, October 8

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 9

Splashes of Joy, October 9

Batya’s Bits, October 10

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 10

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 11

Blogging With Carol, October 11

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 12

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 12

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 13

Simple Harvest Reads, October 13 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 14

Kayem Reads, October 14

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 15

Daysong Reflections, October 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kari is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 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/11dd0/more-than-a-heartthrob-celebration-tour-giveaway