Friday, November 27, 2015


Lone Star Literary Life Blog Tours

present


THE DOOR OF THE HEART

by

Diana Finfrock Farrar


Married for twenty years, Tammy & Ed Sloan suddenly find themselves on opposite sides of a hot button current social issue when their high school aged son is punished for bullying a fellow athlete who is gay. The wife of a conservative Texas politician, Tammy begins to reexamine her values after the incident blows up in the media and embarks on a mission not just to view LGBT issues through a loving Christian perspective, but to become an active participant for positive change. A generous look at the gay community through a Christian lens, Diana Finfrock Farrar’s novel interweaves multiple story lines that feature endearing characters, both gay and straight, each confronting the consequences of homophobia and demonstrating a need for the understanding and the embracing of the LGBT community, especially in the heart of Bible-belt reactionaryism.


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First time novelist, Diana Finfrock Farrar, is a native Texan and financial adviser representative who loves snow skiing and traveling, competes in sprint triathlons, and is an ordained deacon and elder in the Presbyterian church (PCUSA) where she sings in the choir every Sunday.  Blessed to have been born into a family that taught her how to live a life of faith, love and relationship — the idea of family has always been at her center.  Feeling called to make a difference, Farrar has penned her first novel with the hope of educating her readers on issues of empowerment, injustice, and compassion. She and her wife, Charlotte, were married in Ontario, Canada in 2010.  They live in Texas and share five children and three grandchildren.



WEBSITE    AMAZON    GOODREADS  

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I am glad that I was able to read such an informative and touching book about a subject that has long been at the heart of many people in this country. Whatever your belief is about the LGBTQ community, this book will give you reason to search your heart and perhaps open your mind to thinking differently.

This story could be in any city USA as many teens struggle to fit in because they are considered different. After a teen is bullied at school because he is gay, the issue comes to the forefront when a politicians family from Texas is involved. Ed and Tammy's son has been accused of bullying and is sent to an alternative school as punishment. He is also not allowed to be on the football team anymore. His father is furious and thinks it is unfair that his son should be punished . What I found ironic is once their child also started getting bullied, did it really hit home how bullying can cause distress and ultimately discourage a child.

I am impressed with the details the author gives readers about the two sides on this heated issue. She writes with compassion and shows us that there is another way to look at things instead of being so religious you get lost in what matters most. We all have our  opinions about what is right and wrong, but the author delivers a book that gives both sides without prejudice. Everyday we make choices and decisions based on what we belief. I've always believed that everyone has the right to be accepted and loved without judgment because of their lifestyle. This book will be heartbreaking at times and uplifting at other times. The characters will touch you and open your heart to true compassion for everyone. Does everyone agree that all people should be treated equally? The answer is up to each of us. We must decide if we can love one another no matter what race, religion or sexual preference we are. Thank you for writing a powerful book that makes people look at theirselves and remind each of us  that we are not to judge, but to love and accept each other without prejudice.

I received a copy of this book from the Lone Star Literary Life Blog Tours for an honest review .








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Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Lone Star Literary Life Blog Tours
presents

WYOMING RUGGED

by

Diana Palmer


New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Diana Palmer is back in Wyoming with a tale of love born in Big Sky Country…
Billionaire oilman Blair Coleman has always taken care of his business. After having been used and cast aside by a woman he thought he loved, his personal life is far from his first priority. He knows only one has ever truly cared for him—but the irresistible blonde beauty is the daughter of his best friend.
Niki Ashton has seen her father's friend wounded and she's seen him fight. Blair is the strongest—and most stubborn—man she's ever known. That very heart and passion makes him the man of her dreams, but whenever they've been in danger of getting close, Blair has always pushed her away.
It takes a possible tragedy to strip away all of Blair's misgivings. Now it's all or nothing: marriage, baby, family, forever. But will the choice be too much for Niki…or too late?
Praise for the author

"Palmer...is the queen of desperado quests for justice and true love." -Publishers Weekly

"The popular Palmer has penned another winning novel, a perfect blend of romance and suspense."--Booklist on Lawman

"Diana Palmer is a mesmerizing storyteller who captures the essence of what a romance should be."--Affaire de Coeur

"...this is a fascinating story...It's nice to have a hero wise enough to know when he can't do things alone and willing to accept help when he needs it. There is pleasure to be found in the nice sense of family this tale imparts." -RT Book Reviews on Wyoming Bold

"...lots of passion, thrills, and plenty of suspense... Protector is a top notch read!"-Romance Reviews Today on Protector

"A delightful romance with interesting new characters and many familiar faces. It's nice to have a hero who is not picture perfect in looks or instincts, and a heroine who accepts her privileged life yet is willing to work for the future she wants." --RT Book Reviews on Wyoming Tough
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She pulled into the garage at the ranch, parked her car and went slowly into the house. She was tired. The trip home had been uncomfortable enough, without going into work so early. And the pollen was already getting to her. It was so thick that the sidewalk leading to the front porch was yellow.
She started into the door and almost walked right into Blair Coleman.
A scarlet flush bloomed on her cheeks. She swallowed, clutching her purse. “Blair,” she began, nodding as she tried to go past him.
It didn’t work. His mouth made a thin line as he caught her arm and led her back outside to his rental car. He put her inside, got in himself and drove off.
Niki didn’t say a word. She couldn’t think of anything that wouldn’t make a bad situation even worse.
He pulled up at a roadside park, cut off the engine, helped her out and walked down to the wide, shallow river with her. A stand of lodgepole pines sheltered the cleared area from the road. He stuck his hands in his pockets and stared out over the river.
“Janet told us what happened to you at the beach,” he said, with his back to her. The eyes she couldn’t see were stormy. “Your father and I sent the authorities after the drug dealer. He’ll be caught and sent back to jail. No matter what it takes,” he added bitterly.
She wasn’t surprised that her father had wanted revenge on the man. But Blair’s attitude was curious. She crossed her arms tightly around her chest and stood quietly beside him, watching the river flow by.
She said, “I bought that new bathing suit because it was so beautiful. It looked sophisticated and I thought…” She ground her teeth together. “It’s a mistake I won’t make twice. I’m…sorry, about wearing it out on the beach…” She couldn’t go on.
He groaned, deep in his throat. His hands, in his pockets, were balled into fists. “No. It was my fault,” he said curtly. “I should never have touched you.”
So he regretted it. What had she expected, that he’d say he had no regrets? That was the stuff of romantic films, romantic books, not of life.
“I threw it away,” she said, hoping to placate him.
He closed his eyes on a wave of pain. She’d looked so beautiful in it. He’d carry the picture of her like that for the rest of his life, and he couldn’t, didn’t, dare tell her. He’d crossed the line with Niki. Now he had to control himself. It wasn’t going to be easy.
He drew in a long breath. “I’m not going to be around for a while,” he said, without looking at her. “I have divisions I need to visit in person, conferences I need to have with my managers. I’ve let things slide in the business since the divorce.”
“Janet is very nice,” she said, averting her eyes. “I liked her a lot. She was kind to me. She gave the drug dealer what-for and ran him off.”
“I know. She told us,” he said absently. “I’ve known her for a long time.”
“She said your mother liked her.”
“Yes. She was fond of Janet.”
She swallowed down bitterness. “She’s a brunette, too,” she said, trying to smile. “You’re fond of brunettes.”
“I always have been.” It wasn’t the complete truth. He had a passion for a beautiful young blonde woman who was an arm’s length away but might as well have been on Mars.
The sound of the river flowing by, watery and soothing, was all they heard for a few minutes. Then Niki spoke.
“Janet said the two of you were very close.”
“Is that why you invited her to dinner with us, then got on the first plane back home?” he asked with faint bitterness.
“I thought it would make you happy,” Niki replied. “After all, you took her to dinner the previous night.”
Yes, he had, trying to avoid Niki and what was going to be inevitable if he spent any time around her. Especially after the taste of her he’d had on that Mexican beach. Just the memory of it almost brought him to his knees.
Niki drew in a breath. “I’m really sorry…about what happened,” she said through her teeth.
“Not your fault,” he returned. “You can’t help it if idiots make stupid comments about your choice of bathing suits. He’ll be found, and dealt with, no matter what it takes!”
She turned, hesitant. Her cheeks colored. Eyes the color of an August fog looked up into his black ones. “I meant, what happened in the ocean…”
He looked down at her. His broad face hardened. His eyes glittered. She was wearing a beige suit with a pale yellow blouse. It wasn’t low-cut or even suggestive, but her breasts under it had hard little peaks. The sight of them hurt him. She was attracted to him, violently attracted. She couldn’t hide it
because she didn’t have the experience. It flattered him, maddened him, because there was no way she could fake her reaction. He was years too old for her. He was going to have to make her believe he felt nothing…
“Oh, God,” he groaned. He drew her against him, swallowing her up in his hard arms, her head in the crook of his elbow, his eyes stabbing down into hers. She was already having trouble breathing. He could feel her heart hammering against him. His eyes fell to her soft mouth. “I tried…” He whispered huskily as he bent his head to hers.
She felt the hunger in him even before his warm, hard mouth slowly covered hers.


The author of more than one hundred books, Diana Palmer is a multi–New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author and one of the top ten romance writers in America. She has a gift for telling even the most sensual tales with charm and humor. Diana lives with her family in Cornelia, Georgia.









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Niki is a young woman who has been in love with Blair forever. She dreams of being with him all the time. Even though Blair is very much attracted to Niki , he won't pursue her because of the sixteen year age difference. There is a little challenge going on throughout the book that I found cute. Who will give in to temptation first? Blair is a strong wealthy man  who does care a great deal for Niki, but he can't seem to get past their age difference. He does seem to all be there when she needs help and is always keeping up with her whereabouts. I have to say to Blair, "Me thinks you do protest to much." The signs are there and he just keeps fighting his feelings. Who will give into temptation first?

Niki is a sweet young woman who has only had eyes for Blair for so long, that no one else would ever come close to getting her attention. Her dad is who I really enjoyed reading about. He treats her daughter like a princess and does whatever he can to make her happy. He lost his precious wife some years back and worries that the same fate will happen to Niki. Niki has asthma and needs to be careful when going outside. Her dad always reminds her to take her cell phone and inhaler in case she needs it. One day as she is hiking with a group , she becomes extremely ill and is rushed to the hospital. Will this bring Blair to her side ? Can he overcome his problem with age and find happiness with Niki?

The author has a flair for writing great stories with a bit of steamy scenes and the conflict between two people fighting their feelings for each other. I enjoyed the story but I did become a little annoyed that Blair kept pulling away from Niki, but always cane back when she needed help. I wanted to scream at him and say, "Stop being so stubborn and just tell her you lover her already."

Overall the story was good and romance readers will find the book interesting and happy with the ending.




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Tuesday, November 24, 2015


CORRUPTED by LISA SCOTTOLINE

Have  you ever felt like you wanted justice but never got it? Did you wish that you could have another chance and make things right? Maybe Bennie  Rosato will get a second chance in this fast paced thriller. When Jason was twelve he found himself in jail for fighting in the cafeteria at his school. He had no choice but to defend himself against the bully, Richie Grusini. Jason has Bennie as his lawyer and she feels it will be a simple case and he has nothing to worry about. Guess she didn't figure on getting a judge that is hard nosed and believes in zero tolerance when it comes to school violence. Yes, she gets a judge who wants to prove a point. It is not going to be a good day for Bennie or her client.

Fast forward to thirteen years later and we find Bennie still haunted by that case so many years ago when a young boy needed a break. Maybe she can make up for it. Bennie has a chance to ease her guilt when she finds herself face to face with Jason, the young boy she couldn't forget about. He is facing serious charges this time . Remember the bully he had a fight with at school all those years ago? It seems like he is being charged with his  muder . Why would Jason place himself anywhere near someone who ruined his life? Does he still hold a grudge and has now decided to seek revenge?


Bennie is at her best in this story. She is very prepared and is on top of her game. The story is packed with action, twists and writing at its very best.  Pay special attention to the courtroom scenes as they are electrifying. I love how determined Bennie is and the fire she has for winning this case. This is another home run for an exceptionally talented author who makes a story cone to life.

I received a copy of this book from the Goodread Giveaway program for an honest review.

STREET GOD by DIMAS SALABERRIOUS with DR. ANGELA HUNT

There are very few books that I've read that really reach into my soul and fill it with hope and freedom . This book is one of those few. It gripped me from the first page as I read the words "pop, pop, pop. Shots rang out ." I have not read a book so honest and transparent as this one. Dimas began his drug dealing career at a very young age. He had great parents, but wanted to be cool , run with the bad crowd and be rich. Be careful what you wish for, because there is a price for being famous as Dimas found out.

He describes his early life as a drug dealer who seemed to always be a heartbeat away from death. He definitely had someone watching over him, but at the time he didn't recognize who it was. His trips to jail and then prison was so overwhelming I couldn't believe he lasted during those times. He met a lot of tough men in there and at times his anger got the best of him. As I read his story I felt sick at the many beatings he took to prove himself and how his determination to survive was so powerful.

It is a hard book to read at times, because of the unbelievable life on the streets he led. Dimas was around some of the worst drug dealers known on the streets,  but somehow always managed to survive. As time went on and he knew he needed a change, God was ready to walk beside him as he took his journey to turn his life around. There is no way he could have survived all the painful  times he spent in jail and on the run without Jesus watching over him.

Sometimes we have to reach the bottom of the pit before we ask for help. The day Dimas gave his life to Christ and made a decision to walk away from his past, was the first day of the rest of his life. After attending several churches he found the right one that he felt God had called him to. He became involved in ministry and was able to take mission trips to reach others .

This book is filled with hard core facts about being  a drug boss but it also shows how a person can overcome that and be used by God. Today Dimas is married and has three children. He pastors Infinity Bible Church in the Bronx and does many speaking engagements. God does have a plan for our lives. Will we listen to his voice? Are we ready to make changes in our lives? Let this book be an encouragement to those who are struggling and feel like there is no hope. "When we get serious about walking with Jesus, he takes care of the obstacles in the road."


I received a copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers for an honest review.

Monday, November 23, 2015

ON THIS FOUNDATION by LYNN AUSTIN

I love reading the bible and learning about all the different people in there. Sometimes you can read a story and think that you know everything about them. After reading this incredible book, I have a new found interest in Nehemiah. The author has done an exceptionally well depiction of this biblical character. The details are exact and make the story come to life. I am sad to see the series end, but I will not forget the writing that glided effortlessly across the pages.

The book is about Nehemiah and his journey to rebuild the wall around the city . Although he is determined to fulfill this mission, he does come in contact with opossition. Isn't it funny how we try to follow what God has called us to do, and obstacles get in our way. For some of us, we may give up but Nehemiah was a very determined man. Most of us know the story well but I have to say the author has done a great job of making the story parallel with the one in the bible. Although the book is long, I found it so engrossing that I was able to read it without stopping.

Nehemiah had a huge call from God and as you read the story, you find him facing struggles and learning to trust God. I can't count the times I knew I was called to do something, but needed a little push to take that first step. If you enjoy reading about biblical stories this one will definitely be a unforgettable read. Nehemiah is an encouraging story and the author vividly tells it with exact recall of the story found in the bible. I have enjoyed my journey in The Restoration Chronicles and hope the author starts a new book soon.

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

Sunday, November 22, 2015


CATCH OF A LIFETIME by CANDEE FICK

I am a huge football fan. I love the sport and the way the team comes together working for a common goal. As I began to read this book I couldn't put it down. The author does  an outstanding job of making you feel like you are watching behind the scenes of a college football team. The details of playing the game are very realistic and makes you feel as if you are in the stands watching as you cheer for your team.

I enjoyed getting to know Cassie as she joins a football team as the athletic academic advisor and assists the training staff . There is something from her past that could cause her not to be an objective person when it comes to the players. Will her past catch up with her? Can she put her anger and unforgiveness aside and be a team player?

Reed is the coach for the receivers of the team and a very likeable person. His passion for the game and his players is a true example of a great coach. He genuinely cares for his team and wants the best for them. He has always thought of himself a disappointment to his dad. Will be be able to prove to his parents that his coaching job is important? Reed wants to please his parents , but it seems like they can't accept his career choice.


There is a budding romance between Cassie and Reed that will soon cause trouble for them. Will one of them  have to resign in order to keep seeing each other? Is it possible to keep their relationship a secret? I enjoyed reading how these two characters tried to fight their feelings and stay true to their faith. It is an enjoyable read with a surprising twist in the book that could change the lives of many. The author gives us a glance into lives that struggle with acceptance, unforgiveness and pride.

This may be the author's debut novel, but with writing so explosive and heartpounding I'm sure there will be more books to enjoy from her.

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

AN AMISH CHRISTMAS GIFT

I love reading books from some of my favorite authors. In this collection you are treated to three very gifted authors with their own unique writing style that will have you glued to the pages. They are each different stories but capture the true feeling of family and unconditional love .

In Naomi's Gift by Amy Clipston  is a charming story of a widower named Caleb and his precious seven year old daughter Susie. They stop at a charming farmers market to pick up a pie. Caleb has returned to his hometown and is a bit nervous seeing his family after a long time away. Susie runs to the counter and starts talking to Naomi. Through their conversation, Naomi learns that Susie's mom has passed away. Her heart is quickly drawn to this sweet child. As Caleb and Susie leave the store, she wonders if she will ever see them again. Was there a bit of attraction between Caleb and Naomi? The story is very nicely written about hope, love and new beginnings.

An Unexpected Joy by Ruth Reid is where we meet Abilgail "Abby" Kemp. Some call her Gabby Abby because she is always talking. Do you know someone like that? Abby believe that God has given her the gift of talking and doesn't see what all the fuss is about. Poor Abby can't even have more than one date with a boy. I guess they don't like a lot of chatter and soon grow tired of her constant banter. Now when Abby becomes quiet , there is always a reason to worry. It reminds me of when my children were growing up. If it became very quiet in their bedroom, I knew they were up to something. What would make Abby become so quiet?

She takes on a job of looking after Micha's grandmother and seems to be enjoying the time she spends with his grandmother. They grow close and I enjoyed the tender moments they shared as the grandmother gave her words of wisdom and encouragement. Something happens one day that will cause Abby to get hurt by Micah . Will this cause Abby to feel judged? Can they look past their disagreement and find happiness? I loved the message in this story about making quick judgments and then learning that you were wrong. I wonder if we know that our words or judgmental attitude hurt someone ? You will enjoy this story of reconciliation ,  forgiveness and learning to see people for who they truly are.

A Christmas Visitor by Kelly Irvin we are introduced to Frannie  Mast. She left her home to come and stay with relatives . She left everything behind including a young man  she loved. As hard as it was to leave she felt she had to. They come from different backgrounds . She is Amish and he is Englisch. But I guess true love does have a mind of its own. Rocky follows Frannie to her aunt and uncle's place to convince Frannie they should be together. I have always heard that opposites attract. Do you think that is true? Will love conquer all? I loved this story about true love, determination and looking past differences to find true happiness.

The three stories in this book are each filled with a great message of family, love , hope and happiness. Isn't that what Christmas is about?

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