Sunday, September 23, 2018

Gone to Texas FB Banner copy

About the Book

Book Title: Gone to Texas
Author: Caryl McAdoo
Genre: Historical Romance
Release date: September 6, 2018
Can beauty truly come from ashes?
Deception drives seventeen souls to hard choices. Either stay on the land they thought they’d bought or heed the lure of free land in the faraway wilderness of a new Republic. Rife with peril and hardship, three families knit together by blood and friendship head out with a widowed man, daughter, and his slave, gambling everything they own on the prospect of land ownership and working it together. Does friendship pave a way to marriage? Can puppy-love survive through a harrowing journey to blossom into a forever lover? With duress at every turn, can the clan stay together all the way to Texas and accomplish their goals?

About the Author

Caryl 6-18Top priority is God’s glory, and that’s exactly what Caryl McAdoo prays her stories will bring. To entertain and draw readers into a closer walk with Him is next. A quick check of stars and reviews attest to the success of this award-winning, best-selling author—all by the Father’s faithfulness. Besides writing, she loves singing praises, including the new songs He gives her! Visit her YouTube channel. Ron, her high school sweetheart husband won her heart fifty-two years ago, and they share four children and seventeen grandsugars. Ron and Caryl live on thirty-four acres ‘The Peaceable’ in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas and wait expectantly for God to open the next door.

Guest Post from Caryl

As much as I hated leaving the Buckmeyers, Baylors, and Nightingales and the Red River Valley, I loved starting this fresh Family Saga series with all new characters! GONE TO TEXAS is Book One of the Cross Timber Romances and features three families—the O’Neals, Van Zandts, and Worleys—joined by blood and friendship through Liberty O’Neal. Laud Worley is her little brother and Mallory Van Zandt, her best friend since school days.
Together, they’d traveled south to settle in Tennessee and were about to harvest their first cotton crop that fall in 1840 when they discovered the deed to their land—the land they’d spent all their pooled savings on—was forged and no-good.
The legal owner graciously allows them to stay through harvest, taking his portion of their labor and cottonseed. At the gin, Seve Van Zandt hears rumors of Texas, a new Rebublic out west, offering free land to pioneers willing to tame its wildlands. This first story—book one—is all about their journey to the new country filled with hope and dreams.
A hired widower who with his daughter and slave helped harvest the clan’s cotton asked to join them on their journey, and so, on that faithful September morn, seventeen souls set out after they hung a hand painted sign on one of the cabins they left behind. “Gone to Texas”!
Another very special thing about this novel, one hundred twelve thousand words—about three hundred fifty pages, is that it is also book one in a brand new collection! The Thanksgiving Books and Blessings Collection that includes stories from eight other authors besides me: Lena Nelson Dooly, Heather Blanton, Kristin Holt, Kit Morgan, Suzette Williams, Pauline Creeden, George McVey, and Lynette Sowell!
All nine books will have Thanksgiving Dinner with family around the table, giving thanks to God for all his blessings. I’ve noticed many series launched in December, but Thanksgiving is my favorite. I love giving thanks to the Lord!
And as always, I pray my story gives God glory, and that its readers will be drawn closer to Him through it. He blesses and highly favors me daily. I cannot thank or praise Him enough!
Thank you, too, for reading my stories, reviewing my stories, and participating in the most AWESOME CELEBRATE LIT‘s Blog Tour!!


Book One in the Thanksgiving Books & Blessings Collection is a story so powerfully written, I felt swept back to the late 1800s and joined in the journey as if I was part of the story. I loved the story and how vivid the details were. What stuck in my mind as I read the story was how much it reminded me of my granddad.  He traveled by covered wagon in the 1800s to homestead his land in Oklahoma. Much like the people in the story, he had many obstacles  to overcome along the way.

I think in those days everyone wanted a place to call their own. I can see how easy it was for the families to trust someone only to find that they had been cheated out of land they worked hard on. Day after day they worked the cotton fields and were exhausted at night. They didn't have fancy machines to pick for them and I could feel their aches and pain as they picked the cotton by hand. It was a shock to learn that three families working side by side would soon lose all they had worked for due to a mean spirited greedy man. It made me so angry to read how he had swindled them. What I really liked was how they all came together to make decisions.  I could feel the excitement as they decided that Texas was their new destination. 

The story is well written and depicts the old west beautifully. Riding in wagons for long periods of time was hard and miserable. Can you image what it was like in a wagon with the sun beaming down on you as you trudge along on terrain that was rough? I was so impressed with the way the author told the story of these seventeen people and how much faith they had in God providing them a new place to settle. A lot of the story at the beginning features Alicia. She has her heart set on marrying Flynn. She sure does pester him a lot about becoming husband and wife. At times she got on my nerves because she almost seemed selfish. What I came to realize was this young girl so much wanted to be loved and her heart was hurting to be loved  by Flynn. There are some good talks between Flynn and Alicia's father that really showed how much Flynn respected Alicia. Will they get married before they reach Texas? 

Another character I really liked was Gabby. She was the outcast at times and seemed to have a somewhat shady past. Gabby wanted to have a best friend but Alicia didn't really trust her. I loved the theme in the story about trust and forgiveness. Several characters have secrets and feel ashamed. Gabby is one of those who has been hurt in the past, and done some things that she can't forgive herself for. Alicia has a chance to forgive Gabby for something, but will she give her mercy or turn her back on her? 

As I read the story I could see the struggles the families endured and how easy it was to become jealous of another. They experience loss that will affect everyone as they travel to Texas. It is a realistic account of how the settlers find their new home and the trials they encountered along the way. Except surprises, mistrust, doubt and a story rich in faith. There is a part in the story that had me crying as I witnessed miracles and redemption. I have always loved the authors gifted way of writing  that captures the characters deep emotions. This is one story you won't be able to put down. Be sure and grab a copy and get ready for an adventure on the open range with characters that will feel like family at the end of the story.

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Captive Dreams Window, September 12
Inklings and notionsSeptember 13
Luv’N Lambert Life, September 13
cherylbbookblog, September 14
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, September 14
Locks, Hooks and Books, September 15
Janices book reviewsSeptember 16
Carpe Diem, September 17
Creating Romance, September 18
Madeline Clark, September 18
Margaret Kazmierczak, September 19
The Mimosa Blossom, September 20
Back Porch Reads, September 21
Bibliophile Reviews, September 22
Texas Book-aholic, September 23
Godly Book Reviews, September 24
BigreadersiteSeptember 24


To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away
GRAND PRIZE : $50 Amazon Gift Card
1st Prize: THREE Choice-of-Caryl’s Titles (print–US only or eBook)
2nd-4th: ebook of JOHN DAVID’S CALLING
5th-7th: print copy VOW UNBROKEN
8th-10th: $5 Amazon gift cards!!
6 hearts of intimacy copy

About the Book

Book Title: The 6 Hearts of Intimacy
Author: Bob & Cheryl Moeller
Genre: Christian Non-fiction
Release date: September 11, 2018
Understand the way your spouse gives and receives love for greater passion in your marriage.
The 6 Hearts of Intimacy is a “Love Languages” for sex in marriage. Rather than focusing on techniques, it unlocks the secret to true sexual fulfillment by revealing the unique way each spouse gives and receives love. Various books describe the distinct ways in which people express and accept love, but this idea has never before been specifically applied to intimacy in marriage.
Marriage experts Bob and Cheryl Moeller present six biblically based and proven ways to enhance your relationship with your spouse as they describe the Romantic Heart, the Giving Heart, the Guardian Heart, the Companion Heart, the Worshiping Heart, and the Ecstatic Heart. They also expose the “counterfeit hearts” that are present in many people’s marriages, leaving their sexual relationship self-focused and empty. 
Many couples spend a lifetime attempting to express their love yet fail to achieve true intimacy. Sensitively written with practical advice and humor, The 6 Hearts of Intimacy shows husbands and wives how to successfully resolve conflicts in their relationship and how to care daily for their spouse’s unique heart of sexual love.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Moellers2Bob and Cheryl Moeller are the cofounders of For Better, For Worse, For Keeps Ministries, which is dedicated to healing hearts and restoring marriages, especially in under-served communities. Each is the author or coauthor of a number of books. Bob is also the author of numerous articles. The president of For Better, For Worse, For Keeps, Bob is a conference speaker, seminar presenter, and international guest preacher and teacher. He also hosts the television program, Marriage: For Better, For Worse, which airs on the Total Living Network and was awarded Best Television Teaching Show by the National Religious Broadcasters. Cheryl serves as the ministry’s Director of Marketing, Social Media Coordinator, and Director of Prayer Ministry and is a speaker and literary agent. Bob and Cheryl have been married for almost 40 years and have six children and four grandchildren.

Guest Post from Bob and Cheyl

You have God’s permission to enjoy sex within your marriage. He invented sex; He thought it up to begin with. You can learn to enjoy it and, husbands, you can develop a thrilling, happy marriage with ‘the wife of your youth.’ If your marriage has been a civil-war battlefield or a dreary wasteland, instead of a lovers’ trysting place, all that can change. You see, God has a perfect plan for marriage, which we may choose to step into at any time, and the mistakes of the past can be dealt with and left behind.
Indeed, the Ecstatic Heart finds its fulfillment in the intoxicating experience of joyful physical intimacy with your spouse that God Himself ordained, created, and blessed. The Ecstatic Heart celebrates married physical intimacy as a gift from God.


I had to laugh as I read this passage in the book; "Love makes you do crazy things." It makes people act weird at times, say silly things and sometimes do something out of desperation to get love. I did like the part they talked about eye contact. You can tell so much about a person looking at their eyes. It's funny that our eyes can tell on us and share our feelings without us wanting to. When you find that one person who completely has your heart, your eyes only want to look at them. It is as if everyone else has disappeared. That right there for me is intimacy. It is sharing your heart without saying a word. 

I remember saying to my husband the other day something that completely made tears come to his eyes. I said, "Thank you for going to work everyday for your family. I appreciate all you do to provide for us."  I didn't realize how much he needed to hear those words. We take our spouses for granted and forget they need to hear how much we appreciate them. 

The book goes into details about what the 6 Hearts of Intimacy are.  Each one is explained with examples and scriptures that help couples understand the importance of having them in a marriage. One of the most important statements the authors make is , "Don't give satan a foothold." When a spouse is hurt by the other, there is a little slit in the marriage where the enemy can come in and start his destruction. It is so important to communicate with each other, share your struggles and pray together. How many of us have withheld sex to punish our spouse? It seems like a great tool to use, but in reality , " Sex was never meant to be a bargaining tool."

The book has good insight into making your marriage stronger through intimacy. I like to think about the day I married my husband. We were so in love and over the years we have grown closer but at times seem distant. I like the idea of taking time to spend a weekend away with your spouse.  I can't remember the last time we went out by ourselves. To me intimacy is not just about sex, but having a bond so strong nothing can tear it apart. You can find intimacy by praying together, sharing your thoughts or just holding hands. The real key is to have Jesus as the center in your marriage. "A three cord strand is not easily broken."

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

lighthouse Academy, September 15
A Reader’s Brain, September 16
Bigreadersite, September 16
Reading is my Super Power, September 17 (Interview)
Life Faith & Health, September 18
Power of Words, September 18 (Spotlight)
All-of-a-kind Mom, September 19
margaret kazmierczak, September 19 (Interview)
A Rup Life, September 20
Mary Hake, September 20
Artistic Nobody, September 22 (Spotlight)
Texas Book-aholic, September 23
Creating Romance, September 25
Janices book reviews, September 26
Carpe Diem, September 27
Reader’s Cozy Corner, September 28
Pause for Tales, September 28


To celebrate their tour, Bob and Cheryl are giving away a grand prize basket that includes a Pomegranate Body Wash from Abba Products and Bath Salts from Divinity Boutique!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Saturday, September 22, 2018


This story is an emotional roller coaster filled with joy, tears, forgiveness and hope. I love how the author makes the characters so real. I felt like I was sitting with Ivy as she takes care of her grandfather who is ill. Christmastime is suppose to be joyful but Ivy doesn't really feel a part of the celebration. Wells Landing is filled with festive parties and family togetherness. My heart went out to Ivy as she sensed herself not part of the joyous celebrations going on.

We all make mistakes, but for Ivy her mistake caused her to become an outsider.  It angered me that Zeb had deserted her and left her to face the community alone. The question now is why has Zeb come back after being away for so long? Will he try to find a way to get close to Ivy again?

I loved the part where Ivy realizes she needs to forgive God and herself. That can be so hard when you feel alone and miserable. Ivy has suffered for so long for her sin and I was on pins and needles waiting to see what she would do. When a crisis happens, Ivy has no choice but to ask Zeb for help. It was so nice to read how willing he was to help Ivy even though he knew she hadn't forgiven him for the past . With Zeb helping maybe Ivy can see that he has changed and wants to start over.

One of my favorite parts of the story was the friendship between Ethan and Ivy. She visits him at the nursing home and their connection is heartwarming. Ethan is a wise man and shares his faith with Ivy. I loved his examples that showed Ivy that people in the bible sinned and were forgiven. Ivy likes visiting Ethan and knows he is very ill. This part in the story was very touching and it reminded me of going to the nursing home to see my mother. I always felt so sad for the people who never had visitors. I'm so glad Ivy took time to befriend Ethan. He will instill in her much wisdom and comfort as the days go by.

What a wonderful story the author has written about forgiveness and trust. I loved how she talks about how important family is and how hard it can be to care for an elderly family member. Ivy and Zeb have much to work through. Christmas will be a new beginning for some in Wells Landing and for others a reminder that love conquers all.

" What a person wanted and what they ended up with were sometimes miles apart."

I received a copy of this book from the author. The review is my own opinion.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

be the miracle FB Banner copy

About the Book

Be the Miracle
Book Title: Be the Miracle
Author: Delores Liesner
Genre: Non-fiction, Christian living, devotional
Release date: June 1, 2018
Whether we title these unexplainable happenings miracles, God-sightings, or some other name, people love to hear of such occurrences. Why? They increase our faith by providing evidence of the miraculous in our everyday lives and heighten awareness of God’s desire to minister personally to us and through us.
Delores Liesner is a prayer warrior with a track record of seeing Christ work in her life and the lives of others. Her articles, devotions, and columns reflect the excitement of seeing miracles transpire, and now her book chronicles many of these amazing experiences. You’ll enjoy it.—Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, author, Jesus in the 9 to 5
My time with God in the morning is the most precious part of my day. Be The Miracle is a devotional filled with wonderful personal stories that will build your faith and stir your heart to receive fresh grace from God and be on the lookout for new ways to serve Him each day.—Dan Walsh, bestselling author, The Unfinished Gift, Remembering Christmas, and The Dance
Miracles happen all around us, every single day if we’ll only be sensitive enough to recognize them and thank God for His divine intervention. Author Delores Liesner shows us that whether a miracle comes as the smallest kiss from heaven or a life-changing act of God, our Heavenly Father is still in the prayer answering business, and as the Word says: ‘We have not because we ask not.’ I love this book! It makes me want to shout about all of the times God has come through for me. It will encourage you, too! It’s a must read! —Michelle Medlock Adams, award-winning, best-selling author of more than 80 books including her latest Get Your Spirit On! Devotions for Cheerleaders and Love & Care For the One and Only You

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Delores is a storyteller. Her passion, whether writing or speaking about activating faith is to be the miracle for others.
Over a thousand of those stories, devotionals, and teaching articles are published in print and online, including a compilation of 31 stories and life-changing challenges in her devotional, Be the Miracle! (Elk Lake Publishing). Delores is often spotted reading (3-5 books at a time), trying new recipes, or munching dark chocolate and orange peel. Her personal ministry is to benefit children with life-threatening illness via Fullness of Life Foundation, Scottsdale, AZ

Guest Post from the Delores

Would you believe a cow turned me into a miracle-believing lady? Though I’d always known about Jesus dying on the cross, and the Bible being God’s words, it took a couple of amazing and unexplainable events for me to understand miracles could happen to me!

We didn’t realize we were risk taking when we hopped in the car and headed for Colorado. Youthful and ignorant˜ in the ways of the world, we were excited to learn that the organization who produced the memory verse cards and Bible studies our friend had given us were having a conference that began the next day, we packed up and went! A startled young man answered our phone call, made when we were already half-way across the country and got to thinking maybe we should have told them we were coming!

The conference was full, but separate rooms across campus were found for us. Consequently we only sat by each other during meetings and some meals, so we didn’t compare notes until on the way home. That was when we both started sharing the same message from God – to give a certain amount to a missionary for 6 months. We did not have the money and the only amount in our budget that matched was groceries. Would God ask us to give up groceries for 6 months? We felt He would, so that He could surprise us with the provisions in a most unexpected way – like sending a cow!

That is a bit of a teaser for Surprise Us for Dinner, God, the first story in my upcoming 31-day personal challenge devotional, Be The Miracle! You see, when God did that miracle-series at the beginning of our Christian life, we knew He was real, and that He dealt with people on a personal level. If God could do this, we figured, He could do anything, and we have many amazing stories that prove it!

Each of the stories is a true incident of God leading me to bless someone else (often a stranger, but sometimes someone we knew), or someone bringing us an unexpected answer to prayer.
When I began sharing stories like You’re the One, The Wrong Store?, Stranger No More, and Impossible Dreams, there were two main responses. Some women were excited to relate to stories of miracles in their own lives, and some women wondered if God would do miracles through them too.

I always share that I do not believe God is a giant get your prayers answered here vending machine, serving us just to make us ‘happy.’ The joy in these stories, and their life challenges, is that God wants all of his followers to be His hands and feet (and less often his voice) in the world. Just as we can represent our spouses with our children, and our supervisors with the public or with other employees because we know them so well, and understand how they would respond to a situation, we can know God in such a personal way that we can represent Him to others too.

That takes time. And that is why each story is followed with a verse, its teaching and a challenge you can follow to recognize and activate God’s command and gift to be “the miracle” – the messenger delivering an answer to prayer.


I wasn't really sure what this book was going to entail. The title screamed miracles are everywhere and I figured that I was going to read some stories about unbelievable events where God performed miracles.  The first lesson I received from this book is to not judge a book by its cover or in this case by the title.  I never really thought of miracles as anything but God healing someone when it seemed hopeless or saving someone from certain death. 

In this book I found wonderful stories of people who needed help, prayed and God answered their prayers when they thought there was no hope. How many of us have paid for someone's meal in line behind us at a drive-thru? We will never know how much that person needed a miracle that day. The book has made me become more aware of listening to God and obeying what He has called us to do. As the author says, "He wants us to be His hands and feet." So many times we need help, but we don't ask. I liked how the book is set up that after every chapter is scriptures that reflect on what was talked about in the chapter. It gives us a challenge ,to  pray and prepare ourselves. 

I am a huge fan of bible studies and love journals. This is the perfect book for me. I do remember a time when my youngest son was eighteen months old. He started having seizures and broke out in a rash all over his body. He was transported to the hospital to have tests done. I noticed one nurse refused to come near my son. I asked her why and her answer hurt but I understood. She was pregnant and the doctors suspected that my baby had meningitis. His room was quarantined and only people who were covered in protective suits  could come in. The nurse was frightened for her unborn child. In that moment I knew he didn't but I told her to remove herself from his care and to take care of her health.  The hospital decided that my baby needed more specialized care and we were transported to Children's Hospital into the ICU UNIT.  I was looking for a miracle that day as my child was hooked up to IVS and machines. 

Suddenly it became very quiet and my child says, "Hi Jesus." I looked at my son  in shock . My son said that Jesus looked right at him, smiled and said he was going to be fine. Everyone in the room stood silently as my son was healed in that moment. The seizures, stopped, the fever went away and my baby stopped crying. Yes that was a miracle ,but it was also a miracle that the right people were in that room and witnessed what a little boy believed. 

There are still times I think about about that time and pray let me me a miracle to someone. Let me bless them. Put me in the right place at the right time. I have shared with a few about my violent and abusive past. When the holidays come, I get very depressed. When I was growing up, every Christmas was the same. I would sit and watch my brothers open up present after present. I never received any.  I would cry out to God to please send me a doll
or a stuffed animal. I never got one by I always believed that someday a miracle would happen. Last year in the mail was a package. It had my name on it but no return address. Inside was the cutest little baby doll I have ever seen. I cried with joy and thanked God that he didn't forget me. I treasure that doll. God sent me a miracle last year that I will never forget. 
We never know when God will assign something to us. It may sound weird but I know that I will obey because there is a reason. What about the lady in the story that couldn't pay for her clothes? God had someone there with just the right amount to pay for them. If we want people to truly see Christians as loving and compassionate people we need to be willing to get out of our comfort zones. I love how the book gives us a plan of action everyday. Praying and reading scriptures is top priority to me. I'm glad that I have space in the book to jot down my thoughts and come back to them when needed. 

Overall I really enjoyed the book and understand more of how we can be a miracle to someone else. We don't know what others are going through, but God will direct our path, place us where needed and give Holy Spirit direction of what to do. Another thing I learned from the book was the challenge made that said, " I dare you to look up verses that say listen or listening." I will take take that challenge and have started doing just that. Thank you for writing a book I will use over and over again. 

"Be still and know that I am God."Psalm 46:10

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Just the Write Escape, September 13
Mary Hake, September 14
Real World Bible Study, September 17
Bigreadersite, September 18
Captive Dreams Window, September 19
Texas Book-aholic, September 20
Bibliophile Reviews, September 21
Janices book reviews, September 23
Carpe Diem, September 24
A Diva’s Heart, September 26


To celebrate her tour, Delores is giving away
Grand Prize: Vertical Be the Miracle plaque, miracle magnet, Be the Miracle stamped cuff bracelet, a eternity circle necklace and Ebook or paperback copy of Be the Miracle
First: Gold miracle plaque, choice of Ebook or paperback of Be the Miracle, and shoe bracelet (be hands and feet of Jesus)
Second: Pink miracle plaque, choice of Ebook or paperback of Be the Miracle, and cross ribbon bookmark
Third: Blue background – Bee the Miracle canvas and Bee pin – choice of Ebook or paperback of Be the Miracle!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018


This is one of the classiest, emotional and pivotal books about Christmas and family I have ever read. It drips with poignant moments that caught me off guard. We all have been there at times in our marriage where we become unhappy but don't quite know why. Our lives seem happy with healthy children, a lovely home and a marriage that has endured loss and triumph, but we feel empty inside.

I adored the significance of the ornaments in the story. It told in compassionate detail every important moment shared between Felicia and Jackson as they married and raised a family. There is a point in the story that made time stop for a minute. Felicia senses she is unhappy but blames everything else but the real reason she is sad. Maybe it was the realization that she hadn't forgiven herself for something that happened in their past. Does she blame Jackson for not allowing her to pursue her dreams?

On this Christmas of 2018 everything has changed in the family. Christmas was always special because Jackson gave a special gift to his wife every year that spoke to their hearts. Will it happen this year? How did they drift apart? The story is of two people trying to find their way back to each other and along the way experience Christmas like never before. The reference to Mary and Joseph in the story is very significant and it brings deep feelings to Felicia. I cried throughout the book as it really hit home for me.

It has been so hard all these years for me to enjoy the holidays. My childhood was filled with violence and abuse. Christmastime was the worst because I never once received a present my entire childhood. My brothers were blessed with gifts but I had to sit and watch them open them. When I became a mother I did everything I could to make sure that my children had a good Christmas. I put on a good front, but inside I cried for that little girl who wanted a doll and stuffed animal so bad. Over the years I gradually have begun to forgive my parents. What spoke to me the most in this book is two things. The first was how Felicia forgot to forgive herself. That was so powerful and  something we often overlook.  Thank you for reminding me that I still need to work on that myself. The second thing is how blessed I am to have a man who has stood by me all these years and showed nothing but unconditional love. Felicia didn't understand what she had in Jackson until it was almost too late. I loved when Jackson told Felicia, "I've been in love with you since high school." Jackson and Felicia have each realized they need to work on their marriage and communicate. Will they be able to safe their marriage? Can they remember those special moments at Christmas that are shared with a small gift so precious it reaches into their soul and brings hope? Jealousy and trying to get approval from your parents can stay with you for a long time. Will Felicia and Jackson be able to accept that God is proud of them?

This story will need to be read with tissues handy as you read about a family that goes through trials and leaves you with hope, and a feeling of God's love as He wraps His arms around you. He reminds us that we should treasure our memories and love each other like he loves us.

"The wounds of unforgiveness are not healed at once, but by the proper application of love and time."

I received a copy of this book from the author. The review is my own opinion.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Hidden among the stars FB banner copy

About the Book

Book Title: Hidden Among The Stars
Author: Melanie Dobson
Genre: Historical Fiction (However, this is a time-slip novel, so there is also a contemporary component to the story)
Release date: September 4, 2018
From the award-winning author of Catching the Wind, which Publishers Weekly called “unforgettable” and a “must-read,” comes another gripping time-slip novel about hidden treasure, a castle, and ordinary people who resisted evil in their own extraordinary way.
The year is 1938, and as Hitler’s troops sweep into Vienna, Austrian Max Dornbach promises to help his Jewish friends hide their most valuable possessions from the Nazis, smuggling them to his family’s summer estate near the picturesque village of Hallstatt. He enlists the help of Annika Knopf, his childhood friend and the caretaker’s daughter, who is eager to help the man she’s loved her entire life. But when Max also brings Luzia Weiss, a young Jewish woman, to hide at the castle, it complicates Annika’s feelings and puts their entire plan—even their very lives—in jeopardy. Especially when the Nazis come to scour the estate and find both Luzia and the treasure gone.
Eighty years later, Callie Randall is mostly content with her quiet life, running a bookstore with her sister and reaching out into the world through her blog. Then she finds a cryptic list in an old edition of Bambi that connects her to Annika’s story . . . and maybe to the long-buried story of a dear friend. As she digs into the past, Callie must risk venturing outside the safe world she’s built for a chance at answers, adventure, and maybe even new love.

About the Author

Melanie-Dobson-Author-PhotoMelanie Dobson is the award-winning author of nearly twenty historical romance, suspense, and time-slip novels including Catching the Wind and Chateau of Secrets . Three of her novels have won Carol Awards; Love Finds You in Liberty, Indiana won Best Novel of Indiana in 2010; and The Black Cloister won the Foreword Magazine Religious Fiction Book of the Year.
Melanie is the former corporate publicity manager at Focus on the Family and owner of the publicity firm Dobson Media Group. When she isn’t writing, Melanie enjoys teaching both writing and public relations classes at George Fox University.
Melanie and her husband, Jon, have two daughters. After moving numerous times with work, the Dobson family has settled near Portland, Oregon, and they love to hike and camp in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest and along the Pacific Coast. Melanie also enjoys exploring ghost towns and abandoned homes, helping care for kids in her community, and reading stories with her girls.
Visit Melanie online at

Guest Post from Melanie

Hallstatt’s Hiding Places
Backpacking across Europe—that’s how my husband Jon and I decided to celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary. We savored the old world culture and charm as we hiked along Italy’s coast, toured medieval castles in Germany, and cruised the canals in Belgium; we both left a bit of our hearts in an ancient lakeside town called Hallstatt.
The moment we stepped off the ferryboat and into this storybook village, we crossed through a portal of sorts, traveling back several centuries in time. The rugged, snow-capped mountains around us and alpine lake, the quaint village with its church steeples and cobblestone lanes and waterfall that spilled into town—all of it captivated us.
Along the shore, hidden partially by trees, we could see spires of an abandoned castle, and I wanted to know its story. No one in Hallstatt could tell us who’d lived in the castle—at least, not in English—so my husband agreed to a new adventure. With a swan as our escort, we glided across the lake in an electric boat so I could study the rusty turrets, boarded windows, and wooden boathouse resting in the water like a felled log.
Instead of quelling my curiosity, the match of inspiration ignited my mind. Who had lived in this castle, and what happened there? I began writing in my journal that night, trying to capture my rogue thoughts on paper, hoping that one day a novel would emerge from the ashes of this castle’s story.
When we returned home, I began researching more of Hallstatt’s history and discovered that this region, in all of its beauty and mystique, had been infiltrated by an enemy in 1938. This town and the surrounding Salzkammergut became a mountain retreat for Nazi officials who built mansions on the shores of its many lakes and used salt mines to hide “ownerless treasure”—the gold bullion and artwork they’d stolen from the Jewish people.
The Nazis intended to build a Fourth Reich in this alpine fortress, but the Allies had other plans. Near the end of the war, these lakes became a dustbin of sorts, collecting whatever the enemy dumped into its waters—weapons, counterfeit banknotes, concentration camp lists—as they fled south from the Allied troops. The Devil’s Dustbin, locals call it.
Lake Hallstatt plunges more than four hundred feet between the fortress of mountains. Because of its depth and the many hiding places in the underwater forests, caves, and shifting sands, divers continue finding World War II artifacts today. Some still believe there’s a treasure trove buried on the bottom, but no one has reported finding any gold.
After our trip, a story about this castle and what happened to the heirlooms of the Austrian Jewish people continued to burn inside me until I finally put it on paper. So I built Schloss Schwansee—Castle of Swan Lake—in my mind, inspired by the castle along Lake Hallstatt, and created a cast of historical and contemporary characters who are searching for lost treasure.
Hidden Among the Stars is a time-slip novel about a castle and treasure and fairytales, but most of all, it’s a story about God using ordinary people across Austria to resist evil in their own extraordinary way.


I couldn't get through the book without crying several times. The author has written an historical story that sweeps across time from 1938 to present. It was easy to follow when going from time period to time period. Each character had a special place in my heart with their fierce determination to survive. I have read several books about how Hitler treated the Jewish citizens and each time my heart weeps for them. This book was especially emotional because the characters seemed so alive and jumped off the pages.

Annika was a special person who wanted to help her friend Max hide treasures so that Hitler's men couldn't find them. It was such a risk for her and I feared that she would be found out. Would you risk your life to help a friend? The author describes the terror that the Jews faced with deep emotional words. I can't imagine having to hide from people who hated you. The story is very intriguing and I couldn't put the book down.

When the book goes to present day, I saw the brilliance of how gifted the writer is. It is a seamless jump from past to present . Callie is a wonderful character and I liked her instantly. How fun it was to read how much Callie enjoys being at the bookstore everyday. She does story time with children which they all look forward to. When she discovers a very old  children's book, she finds something very special hidden in the pages. This will take her on a journey that will span years and impact many lives.

I really enjoyed finding out more about "ownerless treasures" and how desperate people wanted to preserve them. Are there still treasures hidden today that are waiting to be found? Callie goes to great lengths to discover who Annika was and what the hidden message in the book meant. It's a wonderful story filled with faith, danger, sadness and for me an unexpected ending to the story. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

Fiction Aficionado, September 6
Back Porch ReadsSeptember 6
Among the Reads, September 6
The Power of Words, September 7
Multifarious, September 7
The Becca Files, September 7
Painting with Words, September 8
Lis Loves Reading, September 8
cherylbbookblog, September 9
Madeline Clark, September 9
Mary Hake, September 9
Genesis 5020, September 10
Faithfully Bookish, September 10
Simple Harvest Reads, September 10 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Margaret Kazmierczak, September 11
All-of-a-kind Mom, September 11
Daysong ReflectionsSeptember 11
Remembrancy, September 12
Inklings and notionsSeptember 12
amandainpaSeptember 12
Maureen’s Musing, September 13
Locks, Hooks and Books, September 13
Just Commonly, September 13
Book by Book, September 13
Connect in Fiction, September 14
Pause for Tales, September 14
Have A Wonderful DaySeptember 14
Splashes of JoySeptember 14
Tell Tale Book Reviews, September 15
To Everything A Season, September 15
Bibliophile Reviews, September 16
BigreadersiteSeptember 16
Aryn The Libraryan, September 16
By The Book, September 17
Janices book reviews, September 17
Texas Book-aholic, September 18
Carpe Diem, September 18
Godly Book Reviews, September 19
For The Love of Books, September 19
Live. Love. Read., September 19
Reader’s Cozy Corner, September 19


To celebrate her tour, Melanie is giving away a grand prize package that includes a $25 Amazon gift card, Catching the Wind paperback, and Hidden Among the Stars paperback!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.