Saturday, November 21, 2015


ALL IS CALM, ALL IS BRIGHT by COLLEEN COBLE

I do love mysteries and when you put that with a Christmas theme , you have a great book. I loved the two stories that were packed in this book. The characters are well developed and fun to get to know. This author has always written great stories that intrigue me and makes me stay up late into the night to finish the last chapter. This book is no exception.

In "All Is Calm" we are introduced to Lauren Everman. She has a passion for horses and when she suspects one is going to be hurt she leaves late at night and hides out at a ranch she went to as a child. Why did Lauren stay at the ranch when she was a child? What secrets does she have? It seems that Brendan Waddell has questions for Lauren. He has found out   that she has been accused of a horrible crime and he doesn't fill comfortable with her on the ranch. The ranch is a safe place for foster children and he wants them protected . Will he believe Lauren's story ? Can they work together to solve this mystery? The story moves along at a fast pace, and will bring you a great ending filled with holiday cheer.

In "All is Bright"  we find Delilah Carter. A very giving woman who is the manager of Tidewater Inn. Delilah is always willing to go the extra mile to mile others. She seems to live a quiet and comfortable  life, but that will soon change. As she is driving one day she is suddenly run off the road. Who would want to hurt Delilah?  She turns to the Sheriff, Tom Bourne to help her find the person who would intentionally run her off the road.  There is one small problem with asking for help from the Sheriff. Delilah is not sure she can trust him. Will she be able to tell him about her past? Is there a connection to her past and the person who ran her off the road? Get ready for a quick ride as this mystery is filled with excitement and intrigue.

The stories are good and sometimes a bit rushed but overall a great read for mystery fans. I did notice a theme in both stories thst I found interesting. Both women had secrets from their past and it was hard for them to trust others. How many of us have done the same thing? We keep secrets so we won't get hurt or judged and when these women opened up they found peace and people willing to help. I loved that part of the stories. I'm not sure if the author wrote the stories with that  underlying message, but it sure did make me think of how we push people away at times to protect ourselves from unseen harm.


I received a copy of this book from The Fiction Guild for an honest review.

Friday, November 20, 2015


CHANGE OF HEART TOUR
PLUS GIVEAWAY


Title:  Change of Heart
Author:  Molly Jebber
Publisher:  Kensington Publishing Corps.
Release Date:  June 30, 2015

      

ABOUT THE BOOK 

A modern new century brings a young Amish woman an unexpected new life—and a chance to discover love’s true way home…

Ohio, 1899. Soft-spoken midwife Becca Yost lived by her Amish faith’s strict rules—until her fiancĂ© jilted her before their entire community. She’s never been away from home, but the bustling Englischer town of Massillon, Ohio, is a welcome unexpected refuge. Especially when she goes to work for Dr. Matt Carrington, who shares her passion for healing those in need. His outgoing spirit and gentle strength show Becca a surprising new world of choices—and irresistible love. But there is one formidable obstacle: Matt’s wealthy mother is determined her son will marry a society woman.

With her newfound resolve challenged, Becca decides that she and Matt must not be destined for each other after all. She accepts that she will have to forge a life alone—until a wrenching crisis and life-changing revelations teach her that true faith lies in all things, especially impossible second chances.

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

MY REVIEW
This is a different kind of Amish book than I am use to. It is set in the late 1890s  and has a flair of the old west to it. I fell in love with the story and couldn't put it down. Becca Yost has decided to come stay with her sister Ruth and  try to overcome the embarrassment of being jilted by her fiancĂ© . Becca is a very kind and gentle  Amish woman who is trained as a midwife.

After arriving in town, she becomes injured and meets the very handsome Dr. Matt Carrington. He takes care of her injury and there seems to be a bit of a spark between them. Becca finds herself working at Matt's clinic as his nurse and they begin a courtship. Not everyone is happy with this infatuation. Can a plain Amish woman fit in a world of prestige and wealth? I enjoyed the conflict between Becca and Matt's mother very much. It shows how a person can judge another without knowing them. Do we sometimes do the same thing?

The story is filled with judgment, hurt, betrayal and God's  never ending love. The author has written a story that will have you feeling empathy and compassion for some. Does Matt's mother show mercy towards Becca? Will Matt's parents ever accept Becca?  Can a person really change their heart? I highly recommend this book to readers who love a well written story that shows how judging someone can cause hurt and conflict. As I finished the book, I sat for a moment to remind myself , "Judge not, lest you be judged."  I also loved the quilt pocket that different characters made that had a note or letter in it. What a treasure it would be to receive such a heartwarming and personal gift from someone. The author has done an exceptional job of writing a story that shows that love does conquer all and with faith restoration is possible.

I received a copy of this book from the Celebrate Lit Blog Tour for an honest review.



TO PURCHASE A COPY:

      

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

GIVEAWAY

Molly has generously donated a print copy of Change of Heart for each host on this tour to give away!  

For this stop, all you have to do is:
  1. leave a comment here for Molly or myself. 
  2. Don't forget to leave your email using [at] & [dot] to avoid spammers. 


This giveaway (on this stop) will end on December 2, 2015 and Random.org will select a winner.  Scroll down for links to the rest of the tour hosts for more chances to win a copy! 


 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Molly Jebber is an educational, motivational, and Women’s Christian Connection speaker. She was raised in a small town in the Midwest, and insists if you had blinked twice, you would’ve missed it. She loves God, her family and friends, sunshine, swimming and traveling to the Amish communities.  Creating historical Amish characters and throwing them into difficult situations and joyous times has been challenging and fun for her. The greatest reward she’s experienced in becoming an author is meeting wonderful people from all over the world who’ve been encouraging and supportive.

CONNECT WITH MOLLY:  websitefacebooktwitter

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 


CELEBRATE LIT TOUR SCHEDULE

Nov 14: Heidireads
Nov 15: Cassandra M
Nov 17: Cherylbookblog
Nov 18: Just Commonly
Nov 19: ArtisticNobody
Nov 25: Bukwurmzz
Nov 26: A Greater Yes
Nov 27: Quiet Quilter
Nov 27: The Power of Words 

BROTHER CHARLIE by ISAAC ST. LAURENT

What a cute book to give to a child who will soon be having a baby brother or baby sister in the house. Everyday Charlie asks his mother to do something with him.  Just as they prepare to spend  time together, the baby cries. What a trying time for big brother to have to share his mother. The illustrations are gorgeous and the story is sweet and shows how bringing a new baby into a home can be a little hard on the older child. I love how patient Charlie became with his baby brother and started to spend time with him. It is a book that would be a great treasure to give to  their older child as they bring baby home to add to their family. In a simple way, the author shows the older child how they can take part in making the new baby feel loved and happy.

I received a copy of this book from The BookClub Network for an honest review.

Thursday, November 19, 2015


A CUP OF DUST by SUSIE FINKBEINER

I had heard a lot about this book. It was very well publicized in bookstores and social networks. When I received notice that I would be reading this book, I was beyond excitement. This story captured the long ago memories of my granddad who had a farm in the Oklahoma Panhandle. I would spend two weeks every summer there as I explored his two-hundred acres. This story helped remind me of a great childhood memory.

Pearl is a curious ten year old who seems wiser than her years. Her dad is the local sheriff and is a hero to many. Everyone knows her family and respects them. Pearl  has a best friend named Ray. They go everywhere together as they explore the town and share their thoughts.  I remember there being lots of jackrabbits on my grand dad's farm and of course seeing one all fried up and ready to eat at the dinner table. I was never able to eat one. The author wrote a very vivid account of what people use to do to rid the farms of the pesky critters. Pearl had tears streaming down her face as she witnessed this event and gave her such an innocence that I could actually visualize her openly grieving for the animals. The author does an amazing job of describing this time period with honesty and realism. Some may not care for the vivid details, but without them the true understanding of this era would be lost.

There is a strange man that has come to Pearl's town. He sure does seem to know her. Who is this man? Will he be a danger to Peal? The story is so mesmerizing , that I picture myself at Pearl's house surrounded by her loving family. They live a simple life with a strong family bond.  The dust storms were fierce and seemed to cover the town like a dome. It was hard for people to breathe in the dust storm and the preacher of the town said, "It's the wrath of God Almighty pouring  down on us. " We best get on our knees and beg God to take us back. Beg Him to forgive our sins and to take us back."  The preacher is a great character written with strong convictions and a bit of  a dramatic flair. Can you imagine sitting there listening to the preacher shouting at the top of his lungs that we all need to repent?

There are so many interesting characters in the book and such outstanding writing that I could not put this book down. I must say I was very intrigued with who this man named Eddie was. Why did he appear out of nowhere and seem to follow Pearl? There is a deep secret that will soon turn many lives upside down. There is a storm brewing in the town . Is it another dust storm or something hidden for  many years that will cause Pearl much hurt and a sense of being lost and unloved?

I am completely overwhelmed by the intricate writing of this story. Be ready to be swept back to a time period that was hard to live in with struggles to keep food on the table, dust storms that literally take your breath away and characters so real, you feel as if you are watching a show from "Little House on the Prairie." I am now a huge fan of this author. I will anxiously be waiting for another book from her.

I received a copy of this book from The BookClub Network for an honest review.A

RHAPSODY IN RED by DONN TAYLOR

What a treat to read a book from this author. His books are always filled with well written intrigue and characters that cover the pages with incredible emotions that grab your attention right away. Preston Barclay is a very private person. He teaches history at a college, then slips away to his house where he has hallucinations of music playing in his head. Yes, I was already intrigued by this character. He must love his privacy and there is going to be something very significant about the music in this story.

On one particular day Mara Thorn happens to walk into Preston's office looking for help. This was not going to be a quiet day for Preston as he and Mara discover the body of a fellow teacher. Suddenly they find themselves as the prime suspects. How will they prove their innocence? Does the dead teacher have a link to others in the story? As they start to do their own investigation their personalities will clash. Preston doesn't really like to be around women and Mara doesn't trust men. How will they  work together? The author has written a mystery that takes you on many  twists as characters come to life with intrigue and quirkiness. It is a book that you will find hard to put down. This was a hard mystery for me to figure out, which makes the writing superb. Thank you for a book that was such a joy to read and a mystery that reminds me of a Alfred Hitchcock movie.

I received a copy of this book from The BookClub Network for an honest review.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015


SAVING LAUREL by RAINE ENGLISH

Although it is a short book, it really keeps you interested right from the beginning. Laurel has to move out of her apartment for renovations. She decides  to go back to her parents home so she can get some peace and quiet. After finishing playing  a role on TV, she has recently gotten a new part in a big show. Laurel wants to concentrate on her lines for the part and maybe put some ghosts to rest.

She lost her parents in a tragic plane accident. As she is in the house she smells cigar smoke. Funny, isn't that the same cigar smell of the cigar her dad use to smoke?  Why is she hearing  violins playing and  people talking? Is she losing her mind? She decides while she is there, it is time to sell the big house and acreage .

Lucas an old friend she knew in high school, is a real estate broker. What a perfect person to help her sell the place and move on with her life. As Laurel is there at night, she keeps having  recurring dreams about an accident that happened at her parents house one evening. She has never forgiven herself for the death of her friend Ashley. She blames herself for his death.  Why is she seeing him at different places around the house ? Is his ghost trying to tell her something? Will Laurel find peace at last?

I loved the beautiful writing style and the characters that come to life with their connection to each other. Laurel is a character that has carried a burden for a long time, and the author shows her soft vulnerable side  as she interacts with Lucas. This is a charming story that takes us on a journey with a young woman learning to let go of her past and finding happiness. I loved these lines that a character said, "Life's all about choices . Some good, some bad. Just be sure the ones you make in the future bring happiness to your life." We all need to apply that to our own life. We deserve happiness.

I received a copy of this book from the author for an honest review.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015


HEALED HEALTHY AND WHOLE by MARION M. PYLE

There is a saying that goes something like this, "Good things come in small packages." And in this small book is a gift of eye opening tools  to better health as you fight cancer or a chronic illness.  As Russell is diagnosed with bladder cancer, his journey began to fight for his health. It seemed as if what could go wrong after surgery, did go wrong.

After several painful weeks, Russell and his wife Marion decided to see another doctor. They found out that he would again need to have surgery. They went through msny struggles and trials during this time, but found strength in God. Russell and Marion began to pray , fast and change their eating habits.

After the second surgery the doctor told them that two of the biopsies were positive for cancer. So began BCG treatments. With only a 25 to 30 percent chance of success, it was time to look for a different treatment. I am amazed at the endurable this couple had as they sought other alternative treatments. There were days when they needed encouragement and found their peace by praying and standing together in faith." I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10.

In January they received the great news that Russell was cancer free. Along their journey they said, 'God led us to the most outstanding pastors and counselors. To encourage and comfort us ." This is a great book filled  with resources and faith  for anyone going through an illness that has left you discouraged and looking for answers.

I received a copy of this book from The BookClub Network for an honest review.

Monday, November 16, 2015



Lone Star Literary Life Blog Tours

presents

Freed to Forgive

by 

Julie B. Cosgrove


Genre: Inspirational/Suspense


Shackled by her past, can she be freed to forgive?

Abused in her Mexican village, Marisol’s anger is her ticket to freedom in America or so she thinks. But her temper lands her in worse and worse situations. Trafficked and pregnant, she gives up the baby so it can have a better life.

Now, ten years later, her past returns to haunt her, just when she has caught the eye of Jesse, the one man who wants to know her…and not just her body. Marisol has struggled hard to disguise her past, but will the unforgiving spirit she harbors prevent her from embracing her future?


Though delicately worded with veiled descriptions, this faith-based novel does depict some disturbing, yet unfortunately all too common, sex trafficking scenes necessary for the plot.


BUY LINKS




Praise for Julie Cosgrove

I've bought Julie B Cosgrove's new book and will read it when released. After reading others from Julie, I know this one will be a dynamite read too.
Gay N Lewis, author of the Sara books

Ms Cosgrove writing style weaves into a descriptive story demanding not to be put down. The story arc and the character development are well-toned. Julie B. Cosgrove holds the reader in the palm of her hand. Just when you think all might go well for the main character, another event far worse than the one before befalls her all delivered by the expertly crafted and well-accomplished Ms. Cosgrove. 
Victoria Caine Pitts.

The author takes a very real, very dire situation and educates you about it through this book, intertwining edge-of-your-seat twists and turns along the way. She stabs your heart with a strong awareness of the horrific human trafficking problem our country faces by putting it right in front of you.If this story doesn't tug at your heartstrings and inspire you to get involved, nothing will.



And in the midst of all that, Julie manages to subtly teach a lesson in faith - faith to give God control and wait for his timing, 

no matter how powerful your storm.



Believable characters, a plot that never ceases to shock and intrigue, and descriptive visuals are just a few elements that make this book worthy of your time. I highly recommend it to anyone who...well, to anyone, really.  
Emily Skeen, romance author


 I really enjoyed the way the issues was woven into the story without feeling it was thrown in my face. Cosgrove spent the time to develop the characters enough to make me have that deep connection with them but not get bored, a fine line that a lot of authors cross.  
Jessica Higgins, ereader

Julie B. Cosgrove is a great author who knows how to pull at your heart with her writing. 
Author Mary Ball

Author Julie Cosgrove has used her amazing word-weaver-skills to paint a story full of intrigue, suspense, and humor… 
she has raised the bar for us other authors.  
DiAne Gates, author of Roped

Julie Cosgrove is a talented story teller who knows how to create realistic plots and not drag them on and on with needless verbiage.
Violet Wickes, reader




Shoes shuffled towards her. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to frighten you. You speak English?” 

She bobbed her head.


He bent down to meet her face. A black shirt came into view as a whiff of woodsy men’s cologne filled her nose. A small, wooden cross dangled from beneath his open collar. Marisol dared to raise her eyes, just a touch. They were met by a warm smile. Two strong hands gently clutched her arms. “Come into the church. We can talk. Perhaps I can​ help you.”


Alarms went off. No. Never go anywhere with a strange man—ever again. 

​Marisol twisted from his grip, gaze returning downward.

The man released his hands and held them out, palms up. “My name is Pastor Jake. You can trust me.”


One eye cocked enough to peer into his. Honesty oozed from them, as did reverence, etched by slight crow’s feet. He appeared to be in his late thirties now. A gold band glimmered on his left ring finger.


A shudder raced under her skin. She willed her shoes to move—away from the man, the marquee, and her memories. But they locked to the sidewalk.


His eyes narrowed. “Do I know you?”


Marisol inhaled a shaky breath. Yes, you do. But she’d never reveal it. To do so would dredge up too much sorrow. 





Freelance writer, author and speaker Julie B Cosgrove leads retreats, workshops, and Bible studies. She writes regularly for several Christian websites and publications and has been published in the Chicken Soup for the Soul, Faith Filled Family Magazine, Upper Room's Devozine and Alive Now, The Secret Place, Light from the Word,The Journey and Good News Daily. 

Besides freelance writing and editing for clients, Julie has personally published three Bible studies,two inspirational works, a devotional and several novels - Focused (2012), Hush in the Storm (2014) and Legitimate Lies (2015), Freed to Forgive (2015) with Greener Grasses, Navy Blues and a three book cozy mysteries series, The Bunco Biddies coming in 2016-2017. 


She is a member of North Texas Christian Writers, Texas Association of Authors, Advanced Writers and Speakers, American Christian Fiction Writers, Toastmasters International, Daughters of the Holy Cross and several web-based author groups Julie has one grown son and lives in Fort Worth, TX with two cats. 








blog tour services provided by


Sunday, November 15, 2015


Lone Star Literary Life Blog Tours

presents

A COLD CREEK CHRISTMAS STORY

by

RaeAnne Thayne


Sparkle In The Snow Leads To So Much More
Celeste Nicholas has always preferred to keep to herself in her hometown of Pine Gulch, Idaho…until she becomes an instant celebrity! When one of her children's stories becomes a major success, she's suddenly the talk of the town. Celeste should be gloriously happy…but something, someone, special is still missing from her life. Could the return of her childhood crush be the answer?
Flynn Delaney has moved back home for his daughter's sake. Yet all the millionaire's resources can't help the little girl heal from the tragic loss of her mother. Shy librarian Celeste and her stories do hold some indefinable magic, though. Flynn came home looking for support—can he find that, and true love, in the one who got away?
Praise for RaeAnne Thayne

“[Thayne] engages the reader’s heart and emotions, inspiring hope and the belief that miracles are possible.” #1 New York Timesbestselling author Debbie Macomber
“Thayne’s beautiful, honest storytelling goes straight to the heart.” —RT Book Reviews

BUY LINKS

Amazon        B&N       IndieBound



New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author RaeAnne Thayne loves words. Her love of reading and writing those words led her to a fifteen-year career in journalism as a newspaper reporter and editor.

Through it all, she dreamed of writing the kind of stories she loved best. She sold her first book in 1995 and since then she’s published more than 40 titles. Her books have won many honors, including three RITA® Award nominations from the Romance Writers of America and a Career Achievement Award from RT Book Reviews magazine.
RaeAnne finds inspiration in the rugged northern Utah mountains, where she lives with her hero of a husband and their children. She loves to hear from readers and can be reached through her website at raeannethayne.com.



WEBSITE    AMAZON   GOODREADS  


Review.jpg

It is that time of year when you can find an abundant of authors writing Christmas themed books. This is one book you will not want to pass up. I got comfortable and ready to get taken to a little town  where the characters of the book came to life. The book is so well written , I could imagine the snow lightly falling on my hair as I ran to the house where a fire was just starting to crackle. The story is about three people whose lives will intersect and change them forever.

Celeste Nichols is a sweet caring woman who is the local librarian. She loves doing story time with the children and loves to see the smiles on their faces as she reads. As she is reading at story time one day, she sees a familiar face. Flynn is there with his daughter Olivia and the young girl seems mesmerized by the story. I fell instantly in love with this young girl who seemed to want to fit in. The interaction between Celeste and Olivia was  very heartwarming and brought tears to my eyes at times. It is hard to see a child going through physical and emotional trauma. As Celeste is able to start bonding with Olivia there is a connection between them that is pure and natural.

For some reason I didn't care much for Flynn, Olivia's father.  Maybe it was because he was to overprotective of his daughter or he seemed  to move to quickly to start a relationship with Celeste. I think maybe the author wrote such a great character, that when he screamed  at Celeste, he made me angry . It was cute to see them interact with each other after all these years. Celeste had a huge crush on him when they were teenagers, and to see him back in town was a bit of a shock for her. I enjoyed reading about the Christmas farm and how enchanting it was for children. I could picture the squeals of excited children as they saw lights and beautiful decorations. It was especially nice to read how close knit Celeste's family was. Their warmth and caring definitely was a welcome feeling for Flynn and Olivia. 

As you read the book you will find a woman who is able to reach a young girl suffering from a traumatic time in her life. The author did a great job in giving characters  strength, and bringing people together to help each other. Will there be a romance between Celeste and Flynn? Can Olivia overcome her past and be a happy young girl again?

Overall the book was very well written and kept my attention the whole time. I love Christmas themed books and this one has all the elements of a Hallmark  movie that makes you feel good and brings people together with love and the importance of family.



blog tour services provided by