Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for Freedom in the Mountain Wind

About the Book

Book: Freedom in the Mountain Wind

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: January 14, 2020

The last epic journey before her life changes forever.

Susanna Wilkins will do anything to make her father’s final dream come true, including trek along the path Lewis and Clark explored into the untamed wilds of the Rocky Mountains. Every mile is more crucial now that lung cancer is stealing Pa’s last days faster than she can come to terms with losing him. The journey becomes harder than she ever expected, but paddling upriver through fierce rapids and fighting hungry grizzlies isn’t what terrifies her the most.

Beaver Tail endured more than he can stand from the women in his Blackfoot camp, but the last disaster gave him the final shove he needed to join this band of brothers searching for one of their group who’s gone missing. The last thing he expected was to find a white woman and her sick father stranded at the base of a massive waterfall. His plan is to help them carry their oversized canoe and supplies, then leave them to their strange mission. Yet, the more he learns about the pair, the more he realizes his life is about to be derailed—again.

From a USA Today bestselling author comes another epic journey through breathless landscapes and adventure so intense, lives will never be the same.

 

Click here for your copy.

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Imagine traveling west in a canoe with only your father as your companion.  Then add in the fact that he is dying and a heartwrenching journey occurs.  But when Susanna and her father meet Beaver Tail and his companions, all three lives will be changed forever.  From waterfalls, rapids, bears, and snakes, this book is filled with adventure and danger.

Even though Beaver Tail has been hurt by the women of his tribe, he can not avoid becoming involved with Susanna and her father.  From the start of the story until the last pages of the book, I found myself unable to put it down.  I can not wait to read more books in this series.  Truly this new series is as powerful and moving as Misty M. Beller’s previous books I have read.  So if you like historical clean romantic fiction, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

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

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and children now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

 

More from Misty

When God Directs a Google Search…

I’m a history lover, but you may have guessed that since I write historical romance stories. 😊 Most of my books are set in the Rocky Mountains during the mid-1800s, but as I began brainstorming ideas for this new series, my heart became drawn earlier to the earlier part of the century—a time period with which I wasn’t quite as familiar with the history.

I love when God orchestrates even the most mundane part of our lives, including Google searches! During one particular search (I can’t even remember what I was originally looking for), I stumbled across part of a journal entry from the Lewis and Clark expedition, which trekked across Montana during the time period I was looking into. I’d forgotten that expedition had even entered the territory that would later become Montana, but now I was fascinated.

After finding an audiobook of the abridged journals of Lewis and Clark, I happily listened to almost 19 hours of fascinating stories from the Corp of Exploration’s journey up the Missouri River and across the mountains to the Pacific Ocean, then back mostly the over the same path they’d come. The stories the men told were so amazing, and the detail of their trials so absorbing, I’ve actually re-listened to the audiobook twice! Many of the true tales wouldn’t be believable in fiction, but as I listened, my mind formed the premise for Freedom in the Mountain Wind: a father/daughter duo who sets out almost two decades after Lewis and Clark’s journey, determined to retrace the steps of that famous expedition.

I hope you enjoy this story as much as I loved writing it! And whether you’re a history lover or not, I pray that you too will be touched by this “epic journey through breathless landscapes and adventure so intense, lives will never be the same.”

Blog Stops

Simple Harvest Reads, January 15 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Daysong Reflections, January 15

My Devotional Thoughts, January 15

Genesis 5020, January 16

Blossoms and Blessings, January 16

Connect in Fiction, January 17

SPLASHES of Joy, January 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 17

Emily Yager, January 18

Deanne’s Book Thoughts, January 18

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, January 18

A Baker’s Perspective, January 19

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, January 19

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 20

Jeanette’s Thoughts, January 20

Mary Hake, January 20

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 21

Wishful Endings, January 21

All-of-a-kind Mom, January 21

Pause for Tales, January 22

Bigreadersite, January 22

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, January 22

Through the Fire Blogs, January 23

Betti Mace, January 23

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, January 23

Older & Smarter?, January 24

For the Love of Literature, January 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 25

Rebecca Tews, January 25

For Him and My Family, January 25

She Lives to Read, January 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 26

Inklings and notions, January 26

Blessed & Bookish, January 27

janicesbookreviews, January 27

deb’s Book Review, January 27

Texas Book-aholic, January 28

Hook Me In A Book, January 28

Giveaway

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

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/f49e/freedom-in-the-mountain-wind-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review of The Thief of Lanwyn Manor

The Thief of Lanwyn Manor FB Banner

About the Book

Book: The Thief of Lanwyn Manor

Author: Sarah E. Ladd

Genre: Regency Romance

Release Date: January 7, 2020

Thief of Lanwyn ManorIn this sweet Regency romance, Julia knows Matthew Blake, copper mine owner and very eligible bachelor, is the gentleman she should set her eyes upon. But why can’t she steal her gaze away from his younger brother, Isaac?

Cornwall, England 1818—Julia Twethewey needs a diversion to mend her broken heart, so when her cousin invites her to Lanwyn Manor, Julia eagerly accepts. Lanwyn Manor is at the heart of Cornwall’s mining industry, and as a guest Julia is swept into its intricate world. It’s not long, though, before she realizes something dark lurks in the home’s ancient halls.

As a respected mine owner’s younger son, Isaac Blake is determined to keep his late father’s legacy alive through the family business, despite his brother’s careless attitude. In order to save their livelihood—and the livelihood of those around them—the brothers approach the master of Lanwyn Manor with plans to bolster the floundering local industry. Isaac can’t deny his attraction to the man’s charming niece, but his brother has made his intentions to court the lovely guest clear. And Isaac knows his place.

When tragedy strikes, mysteries arise, and items go missing, Julia and Isaac find they are pulled together in a swirl of strange circumstances, but despite their own best efforts to bow to social expectations, their hearts aren’t so keen to surrender.

 

Click here to buy your copy.

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From the beginning of this book, I liked Issac but was concerned about the motives of his brother Matthew.  Julia needs a change of scenery after suffering from a broken heart, so she comes to stay with her cousins, aunt, and uncle.  But nothing is quite as she expected.  She and Issac find themselves thrust into unexpected experiences even as Matthew sets his sights on Julia.

The book, set in the Regency Period, is full of twists, turns, and darkness.  But I loved reading more to find out if Issac and Julia could find their way to a more promising future then the initial darkness.

So if you like reading books set in the Regency Period, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

sarahladdSarah E. Ladd received the 2011 Genesis Award in historical romance for The Heiress of Winterwood. She is a graduate of Ball State University and has more than ten years of marketing experience. Sarah lives in Indiana with her amazing family and spunky golden retriever. Visit her online at SarahLadd.com; Facebook: SarahLaddAuthor; Twitter: @SarahLaddAuthor.

 

Read an Excerpt

Click here to read an excerpt from the book.

Blog Stops

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 13

Genesis 5020, January 13

A Baker’s Perspective, January 13

For Him and My Family, January 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 14

Inklings and notions, January 14

Bigreadersite, January 15

For the Love of Literature, January 15

Texas Book-aholic, January 15

Through the Fire Blogs, January 16

Pause for Tales, January 16

Wishful Endings, January 16

deb’s Book Review, January 16

Betti Mace, January 17

KarenSueHadley, January 17

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, January 17

Robin’s Nest, January 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 18

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 18

The Christian Fiction Girl, January 19

Remembrancy, January 19

Books, Life, and Christ, January 19

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, January 20

My Devotional Thoughts, January 20

Hallie Reads, January 20

Blogging With Carol, January 20

Kat’s Corner Books, January 21

Life of Literature, January 21

Danielle Lozada, January 21

She Lives to Read, January 22

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 22

Jeanette’s Thoughts, January 22

By The Book, January 23

Blossoms and Blessings, January 23

SPLASHES of Joy, January 23

My Precious Bits and Musings, January 24

Mary Hake, January 24

Back Porch Reads, January 24

Daysong Reflections, January 24

Tell Tale Book Reviews, January 25

Mamma Loves Books, January 25

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, January 25

Hookmeinabook, January 26

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, January 26

Simple Harvest Reads, January 26 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for BABEL

About the Book

Book: Babel

Author: Brennan S. McPherson

Genre: Biblical fiction

Release Date: July 29, 2019

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A sweeping, epic retelling of the story of the Tower of Babel. . . 

More than a century after the worldwide flood, Noah, now the forefather of the living world, works peacefully in his vineyard until tragedy tears apart his relationship with his son, Ham.

Years later, dark prophetic dreams inextricably link him with a young man carrying scars from a painful past, and a young woman who longs for acceptance yet harbor secrets darker than either of them imagine.

Will Noah face the role he played in the slow unraveling of his family? Or will everything collapse when they meet the evil attempting to swallow the world at. . . the Tower of Babel?

Read today to experience biblical fiction that helps you think biblically and feel deeply.

 

Click here to get your copy!

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Babel is an intense story that tells the story of Noah from the death of his wife to the building of the Tower of Babel.  Although it is told from various people’s perspectives, it flows together seamlessly.  It pulls the reader into the story and requires you read to the conclusion.

Although this is fiction, the story contains Biblical people and places brought together with fictional ideas.  The story illustrates the destruction of Ham’s relationship with his father Noah and the resulting path each takes. Truly this book will capture your spirit and your imagination.

Noah, Aran, and Zillah all have missions they wish to complete and dangers to overcome.  Ultimately God the Almighty will triumph.

So if you like to read Christian fiction that will cause you to think, check out this book for yourself.

About the Author

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BRENNAN S. MCPHERSON writes epic, imaginative biblical fiction with heart-pounding plots and lyrical prose, for readers who like to think biblically and feel deeply. He lives with his wife and young daughter in the Midwest, and spends as much of his spare time with them as possible. Find out more about him at brennanmcpherson.com.

 

More from Brennan

10 Facts You Might Not Know About the Story of the Tower of Babel

When I first heard the story of the Tower of Babel as a kid, it was hard for me to take it seriously. A guy named Nimrod builds a tower that he thinks is going to reach to the heavens (what a nimrod) and God punishes him? That’s pretty humorous sounding.

But is that really the whole story?

Upon closer look, we see that’s not quite what happened! And neither is the story any laughing matter. So, let’s dive through 10 facts you might not know about the story of the Tower of Babel in the book of Genesis:

  1. The entire account of the Tower of Babel is in Genesis 11:1-9, but additional details and references are found from Genesis 9 through Genesis 11:26. There’s WAY too much here for just one point, so suffice it to say that to get a true understanding of the events in Genesis 11:1-9, you have to dig deep and cross-reference the surrounding Scripture text heavily. Because Genesis is written as what seems to be a poetic historical account, the events of the flood in Genesis 6-9 directly impact the events of the Tower of Babel. As do the troubles between Noah and his children, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. In addition, the text of Genesis 9 through Genesis 11 is not perfectly chronological. Noah’s death is talked about in Genesis 9, and yet Noah was alive during the events of the tower of Babel in Genesis 11. This is part of the reason why we have to read carefully, and cross-reference often, to make sense of the nuanced details in the story.
  1. The story of the Tower of Babel wouldn’t have happened without Noah getting drunk in Genesis 9. In Genesis 9:18-29, we are given a general overview of the breakdown of Noah’s family, and the end of Noah’s life. Noah plants a vineyard, gets drunk, then gets naked (a little strange), and his son Ham sees him naked and ridicules him to the family. Noah wakes up, hears what happened, and curses Ham’s lineage instead of directly cursing Ham, because as a prophet of God, Noah doesn’t presume to curse whom God has blessed (Genesis 9:1). This curse splits the family, and Noah’s failure to be a spiritual leader in his family is part of what allows the events of the tower of Babel to happen, because the Tower was most likely a religious structure made to aid in the worship of the celestial bodies (i.e. sun, stars, moon). If Noah had not allowed a schism in his family, he would have been more capable of speaking against occurrences of idolatry. Seeing this connection, along with the next point, was what gave rise to the plot for my full-length novelization of the story, BABEL: The Story of the Tower and the Rebellion of Man.
  1. Noah was alive during the events of the tower of Babel. In Genesis 9:28-29, we’re told that Noah lived 350 years after the flood, and died when he was 950 years old. If we flip ahead to Genesis 11:10, we find several VERY interesting clues that help us piece together a reasonably accurate timeline. Shem’s son Arpachshad (I don’t know how to pronounce that either) was born two years after the flood. If we assume that every descendant afterward is a father-son relationship (meaning that there’s no skipping generations—which we see in other genealogies in Scripture), we end up finding out that a man named Peleg was born 101 years after the flood. We’re also told Peleg lived 239 years, so he died 340 years after the flood (ten years before Noah died). We’re also told in the mirrored genealogy in Genesis 10 that the earth was “divided” in Peleg’s lifetime. We know that this doesn’t refer to a continental divide, or the flood, because the flood happened 101 years before Peleg was born, and a continental divide would have caused worldwide flooding again (which God promised to never do). The only other divide we’re told about in Scripture is the divide in languages and countries from the events at the Tower of Babel. Thus, we can pretty safely conclude that Noah was alive during the events of the tower of Babel.
  1. Abram could have been alive during the events of the tower of Babel, and was definitely alive during Noah’s lifetime. Following the timeline given in Genesis 11 (along with the assumption we already talked about in point 3 above), we see that Abram was born 292 years after the flood. This is 58 years before Noah died, and 48 years before Peleg died. It’s therefore reasonable to assume that Abram could have both known about (or been present at) the Tower of Babel event, and that he could have been directly discipled by Noah himself, learning about the beginning of the universe and the world’s greatest cataclysm from someone who had experienced the violent baptism of the world first-hand. In addition, Noah’s father, Lamech, could have known Seth (Adam’s son), and gotten a second-hand account of the garden of Eden. Not hard to see how an accurate oral tradition about the beginnings of the universe could have been passed down to Abram’s lineage and written in some form in his day (because they definitely had Semitic cuneiform writing back during the Tower of Babel days).
  1. The Tower of Babel story could have happened anywhere from 101 years after the flood, to 340 years after the flood. This is interesting for several reasons. The closer the events were to the timing of the flood, the more we question what in the world Noah was doing during the events of the Tower of Babel. Why wasn’t the prophet of God stopping the world from gathering in rebellion against God with blatant idolatry? This was the provocative “What-if” question that gave rise to my novel, BABEL: The Story of the Tower and the Rebellion of Man, which is (you guessed it) largely about Noah’s involvement (and failure) in the events at the Tower of Babel. But in addition to that, we can also see that the population size could have varied widely, from a thousand or so people, to tens of thousands of people.
  1. Just like the hundreds of flood myths in myriad cultures around the world, there are countless myths about the confusion of the world’s languages. Many of these language myths arose through oral tradition in areas that were untouched by the biblical text, which strongly indicates that there was a real event that spawned the disparate accounts. Some of the accounts include an Australian myth that attributes the language split to cannibalism, an African tale where madness struck people during a famine and they all spoke different languages and scattered, and a Polynesian tale that talks of a God who, in his fury, scattered the builders of a tower, broke its foundation, and made the builders speak in many different languages. Pretty crazy, right?
  1. It’s possible that Nimrod didn’t build Babel OR the Tower, though he was likely involved in the process. We’re told in Genesis 10:9 that Nimrod was primarily a hunter (a man of violence), and that the “beginning of his kingdom” was Babel, among other cities, before he went and built Nineveh, among others. If he built Babel, it likely would’ve said so there (though this is, of course, still up for debate). In addition, the actual account of the Tower of Babel in Genesis 11 cites that the people communally said to one another, “let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens.” There was no one person who was commanding the building, but rather a group deciding in unison. Again, Nimrod could have been involved in this process. Or, he could have come to power afterward.
  1. The trinity was involved at the events of the Tower of Babel. Traditional interpretation of Genesis 11, and God’s words saying, “Let us go down and see the tower” that mankind had built, is that Jesus, God (Yahweh), and the Holy Spirit were present and involved in the event. This makes sense with our New Testament understanding of the trinity for several reasons. First, Jesus is the Word, and his relation to God’s spoken revelation is inseparable throughout Scripture. Second, the world was created through Jesus (John 1:3), so he and the Holy Spirit are shown as involved in everything God has done from the beginning (“Spirit hovered over the face of the waters”). We also know the Holy Spirit’s involvement in human speech is profound from the account at Pentecost in the Book of Acts, which seems to be a sort of divine symbolic reversal of the confusion of languages at the Tower of Babel. Furthermore, if God was speaking in the plural to beings unified with him and who needed to be involved at the Tower, he could only have been speaking to Jesus and the Holy Spirit. If God took a physical form in some way, traditional interpretation says that it would likely have been as a humanoid prefigurement of the Christ. Now we’re getting kindof “out there,” but this is important because we can see Christ and the Holy Spirit at work in this ancient, Old Testament story, along with links to their work in the New Testament church and the covenant we have with God under Christ’s sacrifice and resurrection. Because Noah was atypeof Adam. The world began anew with Noah through the baptism of the world. And we know that Christ is the last Adam, the undoing of Adam’s mistakes, and that his baptism is by the Spirit, not by water, which pointed ahead to the baptism we experience through Christ’s blood. Baptism came to represent the death of the old world because of the literal destruction of the old world through water at the almighty hand of God. In this way, we see powerful symbolic connections and importance layered into the Tower of Babel story, and the lives of those involved.
  1. The tower of Babel was likely finished when the languages were confused. In Genesis 11:5, it says God went down to see the city and the tower which the children of man “had built.” In addition, In Genesis 11:8, it claims God spread them out from there over the face of the earth, and that the people left off building the city (but not the tower, which implies the tower was already finished).
  1. For the last time, the Tower of Babel story is NOT about technological advancement. Baked bricks were no new technology. In fact, though modern sociologists who don’t hold the Bible to be trustworthy often say that iron-working didn’t exist until much later, the Bible claims that in the first couple generations of humanity’s existence (long before the flood), humanity was building cities, creating pipe and stringed instruments, forging bronze andiron, and cultivating livestock (Genesis 4:19-22). So, we know that brick-making and using mortar were no great technological advancements. Especially after reminding ourselves that Noah (who was still alive) built the world’s largest wooden boat, waterproofed it with pitch, and survived the greatest cataclysm to ever strike the earth. He had some advanced building skills and would not have been impressed by bricks. The point of the story of the Tower of Babel is to illustrate man’s pride (wanting to make a name for themselves separate from their identity as children of God – i.e. “children of man”), along with man’s tendency toward idolatry, and God’s unlimited power coupled with his mercy and gentleness. The confusion of languages was a brilliant, non-violent way of disrupting their prideful plans. All in all, however, this story is a fascinating view into human nature, family dynamics, mankind’s purpose and ambition, and God’s personhood. If you want a more detailed historical study on the Tower of Babel, check out Bodie Hodge’s book, Tower of Babel, which is a careful study of the historical details, and which is endorsed by Answers in Genesis.

Before working on the full-length novelization of the story of the Tower of Babel (BABEL: The Story of the Tower and the Rebellion of Mankind), I didn’t know any of this. This is part of the reason why I love writing biblical fiction. It drives me back to the text of the Bible in a way nothing else does. I hope reading it does the same for you! Blessings, and thanks for reading. And if you want to pick up a copy of the book, you can do so now on Amazon or Audible.

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 4

Discipling4Life, January 4

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

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, January 6

Literary Reflections Book Blog, January 6

For the Love of Literature, January 7

My Devotional Thoughts, January 7

Through the Fire Blogs, January 8

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, January 9

Betti Mace, January 10

Mamma Loves Books, January 10

Texas Book-aholic, January 11

janicesbookreviews, January 12

Novels Corner, January 12

Inklings and notions, January 13

Emily Yager, January 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 14

Aryn The Libraryan 📚, January 15

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, January 16

Pause for Tales, January 16

CarpeDiem, January 17

Hallie Reads, January 17

Giveaway

Babel Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Brennan is giving away a McPherson Publishing Bundle, which includes paperback copies of Flood, Eden, the Psalm Series, and The Simple Gospel!!

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/f445/babel-celebration-tour-giveawayR

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for Brand of Light

Brand of Light FB BannerAbout the Book

Book:  Brand of Light

Author: Ronie Kendig

Genre: Christian Fiction, futuristic, space opera,

Release Date: December 3, 2019

Brand of LightThere’s a price on her head, and it has everything to do with the brand on her arm.

Tertian Space Coalition has blessed every planet in the quadrants with high technology, save one: Drosero. But in spite of their tenuous treaty with the ruling clans, TSC has plans for the backward planet. And they’re not alone.

After a catastrophic explosion, Kersei Dragoumis awakens in a derelict shuttle, alone, injured, and ignorant of the forbidden technology that has swept her into a nightmare. The brand she’s borne since childhood burns mysteriously, but the pain is nothing to that when she learns her family is dead and she is accused of their murders.

Across the quadrants, Marco Dusan responds to the call of a holy order—not to join them, but to seek a bounty. Gifted—or cursed—with abilities that mark him a Kynigos, a tracker sworn to bring interplanetary fugitives to justice, Marco discovers this particular bounty has nothing to do with justice and everything to do with prophecy. One that involves the hunter as much as the hunted.

 

Click here to get your copy!

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Brand of Light is one of those books that took me a while to get into the story.  Told in different settings from the perspective and experiences of different characters, I sometimes found it difficult to keep up with what was going on at any given time.

My daughter who desires to create graphic novels as a career talks often about creating worlds.  I felt this story did not adequately create the worlds from the beginning of the book.  I sometimes felt like I came in at the middle of a story or movie with no real understanding of what was going on.

Eventually, I found myself reading because I had to find out how the book would end.  But then when I reached the end of the book, I found myself feeling as though the book just cut off rather than ending in a satisfactory manner.  I felt as though I was left hanging.  I feel as though there is much more story that needs to be told.

The twists and turns in the story kept me wondering how it would actually end.  So if you like a suspense novel set in space, check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

Ronie KendigRonie Kendig is an award-winning, bestselling author of over twenty titles. An Army brat, Ronie lives a shot train ride from New York City with her husband, twin sons, and two fur-sons, VVolt N629, a retired military working dog, and Benning the Stealth Golden. Described as an empath by her literary agent, Ronie has used her degree in psychology to write books that have won the coveted Christy Award, Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, HOLT Medallion Award, and more. Her books have also hit the CBA Bestseller List multiple times.

 

More from Ronnie

In November 2005, I lurched into a story that started with one small element—what if a hero could literally smell fear? And so I delved into the story with the characters, and felt like I’d fallen into the vortex. I wrote over 90,000 words in one month, this story just gushing out of me.

But I was a very new writer. And if you saw the first draft that gushed out of me, you’d snicker. I sure have. It’s appallingly bad writing, yet the story’s bones are healthy and intact. So, I teased the story into shape over the last fourteen years. In 2012, I took a hard look at it and tried to shape up the writing. I’d even gotten to know Kathy Tyers, who wrote for the Star Wars franchise as well as the much-beloved Firebird series (*insert reverent pause here*), and I bravely asked if she would take a peek at the first fifty pages or so. Being gracious as Kathy is, she agreed to take a look.

Um, yikes. Haha. Make no mistake—Kathy is a brilliant writer, and I will never write like her, but I learned so much her feedback and took it to heart. Clearly, I still had a long way to go before that story was ready for the world, so I delved into honing my craft and deepening this story. Honestly, I was afraid show Brand of Light to anyone again, because I love this story so much and did not want to see “her” fail. Nore correctly—I did not want to fail this story.

About three years ago, I sensed a deep conviction that it was time to stop hiding and, as an act of faith and obedience to what God had given me, to send Brand of Light out into the world. As I write this, she is still 1.5 months out from the release, and I’m scared. I want this beauty to be loved, but even if it’s not, *I love this story and know I honored God with my writing and sending her out. I can rest here for a long while, reveling in the gift God gave me with this storyworld and its characters. I’m excited to see her launch out into the deep now. As Marco and the hunters always say, For Honor.

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, December 14

April Hayman, Author, December 14

Hallie Reads, December 14

amandainpa , December 15

Inside the Wong Mind, December 15

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, December 16

Wishful Endings, December 16

Pause for Tales, December 16

A Reader’s Brain, December 17

Faery Tales Are Real, December 17

Simple Harvest Reads, December 18 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 18

Where Faith and Books Meet, December 18

Texas Book-aholic, December 19

Mia Reads Blog, December 19

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, December 20

Betti Mace, December 20

Books, Life, and Christ, December 20

Just the Write Escape, December 21

Britt Reads Fiction, December 21

Blogging With Carol , December 22

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, December 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 23

All-of-a-kind Mom, December 23

The Artist Librarian, December 23

Emily Yager, December 24

mypreciousbitsandmusings, December 24

Bakerkella, December 25

Worthy2Read, December 25

janicesbookreviews, December 26

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 26

Just Your Average reviews, December 26

Inklings and notions, December 27

Splashes of Joy, December 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Ronie is giving away the grand prize package of a Tinted Prose edition of Brand of Light, Galaxy Tumbler, “Kersei” Dio Adorable Candle, 3 Character Cards (to include Marco, Kersei, Tigo), and 2 Maps (to include Drosero and the planetary map)!!

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/f2e2/brand-of-light-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Fiction, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for Christmas on Breakers Point

Christmas on breakers point

About the Book

Book:  Christmas on Breakers Point

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Christian Contemporary Fiction, Christian Romantic Fiction, Christmas

Christmas on Breakers PointOne man’s last Christmas wish might change two lives forever.

Mallory Barrows has one last Christmas with her uncle.  She’s determined to make it the best one he’s ever had.

She knows when she asks what he wants as his final gift, it won’t be a tie or a new mug. He won’t need those where he’s going, and he’s quite happy about that.

Mallory just didn’t think he wanted a miracle wrapped in paper and tied with a shiny red bow!

Christmas on Breakers Point is the introductory book to the Independence Islands Series.

 

Click here to get your copy!

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For several years now, Chautona Havig has been one of my favorite authors.  I love reading her books and the variety of stories she has to tell.  This book is the first book in the series of books for the Independence Island series that will include stories from a variety of authors.  She has a way of creating characters and settings that draw the reader into the story.

Mallory and her Uncle Bud tugged at my heartstrings with the love they had for each other.  I appreciated the details about her turning in her resignation to her boss.  The emotional rollercoaster of highs and lows kept this story interesting.  At many points, I found myself wanting to shed tears over the idea of Uncle Bud dying.  He was a character that pulled me into the story.

So check out this book for yourself.

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

About the Author

ChautonaChautona 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 on the web and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

 

More from Chautona

The book opens with a phone call that goes like this:

Her phone buzzed. Without taking her eyes from the page, Mallory Barrows fumbled about until her hand closed around it. The book held her bound in ropes of suspense as the villain slipped into the party unannounced—unseen. While she followed him around the edge of the imaginary room, her thumb swiped, tapped, and answered the call as if on autopilot.

Even as Mallory said, “Hello?” her breath caught. The guy had found his prey.

“Mallory, honey?”

Without a second look, she dropped the book and sat up, feet planted firmly on the floor and all attention on the call.  “Is it time?”

“’Fraid so, darlin’. Doc says it’s a matter of weeks or a month or two. And I promised.”

“I’ll be there Friday afternoon.”

 

Just days after I wrote those lines, I woke up to a message from my sister.  “Call Mom.”

I called.  Mom said, “I need you to come.”  That was Thursday.  I walked into Mom’s house on Saturday evening and our lives changed forever.

I don’t know if God prepared me for this change by having me write that scene just days before, but I have to say it felt like it!  Everything went crazy for over a month as I tried to wrap up my mother’s affairs in Missouri, I had to try to finish three books in a time of upheaval and turmoil.  No, it’s not the same as trying to help a young woman reclaim her True First Love so she could reclaim her first earthy love.  It isn’t the same as starting a whole new life and a new business.  But… oh, how it felt like it.

Another parallel in the story and my life was how Mallory struggles to try to get Uncle Bud to eat. I did the same thing for most of my time in Missouri.  Mom struggled and hard just to swallow and just wanted to eat.  So, while I was writing, I worked hard to come up with a recipe that Mallory might use to convince Uncle Bud to eat something.  The result were these Coconut Lime Cookies. I hope you love them as much as Uncle Bud did.

 

Coconut Lime Cookies

Ingredients:

2 ¼ cups white flour

½ tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

1 cup shredded coconut

1 cup sugar

3 oz room temp cream cheese—cubed

½ tsp vanilla

Zest of 1 lime (key limes may be preferred)

½ cup (1 stick) melted butter (warm)

1 egg

1 TBS milk (whole is the most delicious… and half & half is even better)

1 TBS lime juice (again, some may prefer key limes)

½ cup powdered sugar  (reserved for rolling cookies in)

 

Directions: (oven preheats to 350)

Stir together the first five ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Set aside

Stir together sugar, cream cheese, and lime zest in a large mixing bowl. Cream butter in. Repeat with egg, milk, and lime juice, one at a time. Make sure your ingredients are thoroughly mixed.

Add dry ingredients slowly. Mix well.

Roll dough into approximately 1” balls.  Roll each ball into powdered sugar and place on parchment paper-lined cookie sheet.

Bake for approximately 11-12 minutes until lightly golden.

 

Before you eat, close your eyes and imagine yourself beneath swaying palm trees with warm sand between your toes.  Merry Christmas!

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, December 2

She Lives to Read, December 2

Daysong Reflections, December 2

A Reader’s Brain, December 3

Mamma Loves Books, December 3

Aryn the Libraryan 📚, December 4

CarpeDiem, December 4

A Baker’s Perspective, December 5

Hebrews 12 Endurance, December 5

Betti Mace, December 6

For the Love of Literature, December 6

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, December 7

Cultivating Us, December 7

Inklings and notions, December 8

For Him and My Family, December 8

janicesbookreviews, December 9

SusanLovesBooks, December 9

Texas Book-aholic, December 10

Connect in Fiction, December 10

Lots of Helpers, December 11

My Devotional Thoughts, December 11

Wishful Endings, December 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 12

Stories By Gina, December 12

Quiet Quilter, December 13

Batya’s Bits, December 13

Godly Book Reviews, December 14

Emily Yager, December 14

Blossoms and Blessings, December 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 15

Back Porch Reads, December 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize of a 6 Month Kindle Unlimited subscription!!

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/f1b8/christmas-on-breakers-point-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for Heart of a Royal

Heart of a Royal FB Banner

About the Book

Book: Heart Of A Royal

Author: Hannah Currie

Genre:  Young Adult/Royalty

Heart of a Royal coverBrought to the palace as a newborn, the royal life bestowed upon Mackenna Sparrow was never meant to last forever. With Princess Alina engaged to be married, Mackenna’s presence as companion is no longer required and, like it or not, she must return to the birthright which should have been hers – that of a commoner. But not everyone at the palace wants her gone. When the truths she’s based her life on start crumbling as fast as her future, will she find the courage to trust, both herself and the prince she’s fallen in love with?

 

Click here to get your copy!

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Many little girls dream of being a princess.  Mackenna received that opportunity when she was little.  But when she gets older she faces the reality of being sent back to the common roots she was from originally.  Falling in love with a prince does suit the personal plans of the king.

Trying decide who’s to trust and what to believe can be hard. Mackenna faces that decision.  Her struggle is worth reading about.

The characters are interesting and the story is captivating.  This first book in this series is definitely worth reading.  Check it out for yourself.

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

 

About the Author

Hannah currieAussie author, Hannah Currie, loves God, family, people (in small numbers, let’s not go crazy here!) and writing. She and her husband live with their three adorable kids in sunny Queensland, where it really is beautiful one day and perfect the next. Except, maybe, during heatwaves. They’re not so fun. She loves to connect with readers at http://www.hannahcurrie.com.

 

More from Hannah

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by royalty. Real ones like Queen Elizabeth II, who is such an incredible woman and a total hero of mine (not to mention, as a proud Australian and member of the Commonwealth, my monarch) but also the not-so-real ones. Those found in fairytales. Romances. Narnia.

I’m one of those people who blocks out an entire day to watch a royal wedding, sighs like a hopeless romantic through cheesy princess movies, reads just about any novel I find with a crown on the front and loves a full-spread photo souvenir magazine. I may have even written a short story starring a princess for an English assignment at school. More than once. [Side note, if you’re going to write a story about a princess who is totally adorable but can’t spell, don’t use a misspelled word as the title. It takes a lot of explaining to make sure the teacher knows you did it on purpose and doesn’t mark you down for it… sorry Ninth Grade English teacher!].

The glamor draws me in, the beautiful clothes, the history and romance of it all, but it’s the expectations they have on them which hold me there. Every title comes with a million expectations, whether or not they’re realistic. We expect royals, both real and fictional, to behave in a certain way. To be honourable (assuming they’re the good guys). To care for their people and put them first. To always be there. Yes, even to be beautiful.

But what happens when they’re not? When they’re shy? Fight anxiety? Hate the spotlight? Are blemished in some way? What happens when what’s best for the people isn’t what’s best for them? Or when they make a mistake? Something which, for anyone else, would be easily fixed or glossed over but for a royal, gets written into the history books forever. Purely because of their title.

Kenna, the main character in Heart of a Royal, never meant to be a princess. She wasn’t born into royalty, neither did she choose it. And yet, due to circumstances far beyond her control, there she is. Living in a palace. Part of that life.

Very few of us are royalty but I think we all know how heavy expectations can be and the pain of being thrust into situations beyond our control. And yet, even in those moments and seasons, just like Kenna, we have choices. They might seem small, maybe even insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but they’re there. Who we put our trust in. What we do with the circumstances we’ve been given. Where we go from there.

Heart of a Royal is as much my story as it is Kenna’s. No, I’m not a princess (thankfully!) but I have struggled through finding hope and purpose when life flies out of control and the expectations prove too much. And here’s what I’ve found – God is good. There is hope and God is good. I hope, through Kenna’s story, you are reminded of that too.

Blog Stops

Reflections From My Bookshelves, November 28

CarpeDiem, November 28

Hebrews 12 Endurance, November 28

Hallie Reads, November 28

Emily Yager, November 29

For the Love of Literature, November 29

Through the Fire Blogs, November 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 30

Back Porch Reads, November 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 30

To Everything There Is A Season, November 30

Books, Life, and Christ, December 1

Mia Reads Blog, December 1

Bigreadersite , December 1

Kathleen Denly, December 2

Genesis 5020, December 2

She Lives To Read, December 2

Texas Book-aholic, December 2

A Baker’s Perspective, December 3

Livin’ Lit, December 3

Kat’s Corner Books, December 3

The Becca Files, December 4

Becka Jiménez , December 4

HookMeInABook, December 4

janicesbookreviews, December 4

Blossoms and Blessings, December 5

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, December 5

Just the Write Escape, December 5

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 5

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 6

Avid Reader Nurse, December 6

For Him and My Family, December 6

A Reader’s Brain, December 6

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, December 7

Moments, December 7

Simple Harvest Reads, December 7

Remembrancy, December 8

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 8

Pause for Tales , December 8

Inklings and notions, December 8

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, December 9

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 9

For The Love of Books, December 9

All-of-a-kind Mom, December 10

Just Your Average reviews, December 10

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, December 10

Living Life Free in Christ, December 11

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, December 11

Batya’s Bits, December 11

Giveaway

W

To celebrate her tour Hannah is giving away the grand prize 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/f1a8/heart-of-a-royal-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for The Freedom Challenge

The Freedom Challenge fb Banner

 About the Book

Book: The Freedom Challenge

Author: Dawn Scott Damon

Genre:  Christian Living, Women’s Interest, Personal Growth, Devtional

Release Date: March 22, 2019

FreedomChallenge_frontcover_FinalRevisionBe free from toxic mindsets, destructive patterns of behavior, and lies that keep you bound.  

The truth behind seven little words changed Dawn Scott Damon’s life when she heard a man from a small country church sing “I am who He says I am!” Her life was transformed as she began to believe what God’s Word says about who she is in Christ, and she started her journey out of betrayal, abandonment, and deception. 

She shares compelling truths in a sixty-day interactive Bible study that identifies and confronts eight cords that keep many believers bound. These practical and powerful biblical tools are designed to give you a new mindset, a fresh beginning, and a clear direction for a positive future. 

Take the Freedom Challenge and become an active participant in your own emotional and spiritual transformation. Through a guided, intentional, and interactive daily process of putting God’s Word into practice, the strongholds of destructive and bondage-making behavior in your life can be broken. Choose to take that first step to live free from deceptive self-talk, fear, depression, toxic mindsets, and debilitating lies, among others. 

Thought-provoking questions, journaling space, confessions, and affirmations are included to help guide you toward freedom. 

 

Click here to get your copy!

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Who wants to be caught in chains of bondage or be captive to the belief we are unworthy of God’s love?  Yet, it is easy to get caught up in the lies and believe we are not enough.  The Freedom Challenge examines those ideas and more.  Examing seven cords that can bind us into sadness, despair, and more.  From chains of control, fear, unforgiveness, negative emotions, and more prevent us from being who God created us to be.

Reading in the first pages of the book about Dawn Scott Damon’s encounter with a man she refers to as “Paul” at a country church, touched my soul and spirit.  It is so easy to get caught up in the lies about who we are.  Everyone at some time gets caught up in chains that prevent us from believing God’s truth about who we are and what he thinks of us.  This book offers something every Christian could benefit from reading.  So check it out for yourself and explore this sixty-day journey.

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

About the Author

Dawn Damon Bio Pic 1Dawn Scott Damon is an award-winning author, speaker, singer/songwriter, and “freedom coach.” An ordained minister with the Wesleyan Church, Dawn is the lead pastor of Tribes, a multicultural church in Rockford, MI, ministering to every generation. The founder of FreedomGirl Sisterhood conference and radio broadcast, she blogs at freedomgirlsisterhood.com. Dawn and her husband, Paul, have five children between them and eleven grandchildren. They live in the Rockford area. 

 

More from Dawn

As a little girl, I can remember singing in church with all my heart “Blessed Be the Ties That Bind.” Those ties that bind our hearts to one-another in love and to Jesus himself, are indeed blessed. But what about ties that aren’t blessed?

Hi I’m Dawn and I’m super glad you stopped by today!

I’m a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. At 19 years old, I became a wife and very soon after, a mother. After years of abuse, I was also a victim of rage and bitterness. The childhood sexual trauma was over, but the abuse aftermath—anger, pain, and depression—continued to destroy me. The cords of unwanted bondage choked joy and life out of me. 

Today, I live fierce and free and serve as a freedom-coach to help others do the same. I’ve been on a journey for over 25 years, seeking God’s freedom through his truth and learning how to empower others to do the same. The Freedom Challenge: 60-Days to Untie the Cords that Bind You, is the map God gave me to find my way out of bondage, and now I’m sharing it with you! I pray you will also experience God’s glorious deliverance.

And now some fun facts about me:

I have a wonderful husband named Paul. Together we pastor a church called Tribes—but here’s the deal, he’s the “Pastor’s Spouse,” not me.

I am a grandma of 11! It’s the awesomest—a word I use to describe it! I especially like what my grandson Colton calls me…Jam’ma.

I love animals—all kinds—and I’ve determined there are absolutely no germs in dog kisses.

I also have to admit, I adore anything that glitters or sparkles and someday hope to have a bling store.

Lastly, I love Jesus and I still sing my heart out in church!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, November 4

Spoken from the Heart, November 5

Genesis 5020, November 6

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 7

Godly Book Reviews, November 7

CarpeDiem, November 8

Moments, November 9

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, November 10

For Him and My Family, November 10

Older & Smarter?, November 11

Empowermoms, November 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations,  November 13

Texas Book-aholic,  November 14

Mary Hake,  November 14

janicesbookreviews, November 15

A Reader’s Brain, November 16

Inklings and notions, November 17

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, November 17

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dawn 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/edeb/the-freedom-challenge-celebration-tour-giveaway