Thursday, July 18, 2019

YOURS TRULY, THOMAS by RACHEL FORDHAM

Have you ever wondered what happens to letters that can’t be delivered for some reason? Penny works at the dead end office opening mail that can’t be delivered hoping she can figure out where they really need to be sent to. I would love that job. Can you imagine the letters you may read of someone looking for a lost love? Penny takes her job serious and is determined that one such letter needs her extra care in delivering it to the rightful owner.

Thomas has poured his soul out to a woman in letters that reach Penny’s desk. They are moving and very personal which causes Penny to go the extra mile and find this woman. I think Penny was starting to have feeling for Thomas who she has never met.  Going on an  adventure Penny finds herself in the same town as Thomas.

Penny is a good character and I think she is looking for a purpose in her life and someone to love her. Maybe that is why she has started a friendship with Thomas. She knows his thoughts and has read his inner most struggles so perhaps she can help him forget about this woman he has been writing to.

There is a bit of mystery surrounding Thomas that I couldn't wait to find the answer to. Why did he keep writing this woman who it seems he has hurt emotionally? What dark secrets from his past is he running from? The author does keep my attention as she writes a story that is emotional and filled with danger. It is a great lesson in forgiveness and vengeance. Anger can cause someone to do things they wouldn't normally do. In this story the author does a great job showing what grief and anger can do to someone and it sure hit home for me.

Letter writing use to be the best way to correspond between people. Today we are all texting, emailing, leaving messages and losing that personal relationship by not writing our feelings down so so others can read them. I would love to get letters in the mail from people. Maybe someday we will pick up letter writing again  and have words to cherish and keep.

I received a copy of this book from Librarything's Early Reviewers Program. The review is my own opinion.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Midnight on the river grey FB banner About the Book

Book: Midnight on the River Grey
Author: Abigail Wilson
Genre: Historical Romance/Mystery
Release date: July 2, 2019
Midnight on the River GreyAbigail Wilson returns to Regency England with another tale of murder, mystery, and romance.
After her elder brother’s mysterious death, Rebecca Hunter vows to expose the man she believes responsible-Mr. Lewis Browning-known by the locals as the Midnight Devil and by Rebecca as her new guardian. He alone was on the bridge that fateful night and openly admits striking her brother with his horse, but he claims he remembers little else.
Summoned to his reclusive country estate to await her London season, Rebecca plans her own secret investigation. Yet, Lewis Browning is not as she once imagined, and his motivation is horribly unclear. Recurrent nightmares and Rebecca’s restless feelings are further complicated by the shadow of her mother’s prior descent into madness and whether she too will follow the same heartbreaking path.
Even as midnight rides, strange injuries, and further murders lead back to Lewis, Rebecca can’t ignore the subtle turn of her heart. Has she developed feelings for the man she swore to see hanged? And moreover, can she trust him with her uncertain future?

Click here to grab your copy.

About the Author

Abigail-Wilson-1-200x300Abigail Wilson combines her passion for Regency England with intrigue and adventure to pen historical mysteries with a heart. A Registered Nurse, chai tea addict, and mother of two crazy kids, Abigail fills her spare time hiking the National Parks, attending her daughter’s gymnastic meets, and curling up with a great book. In 2017, Abigail won WisRWA’s Fab Five contest and in 2016, ACFW’s First Impressions contest as well as placing as a 2017 finalist in the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. She is a cum laude graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and currently lives in Dripping Springs, Texas, with her husband and children. Connect with Abigail at www.acwilsonbooks.com; Instagram: acwilsonbooks; Facebook: ACWilsonbooks; Twitter: @acwilsonbooks.

An excerpt from Midnight on the River Grey

My heartbeat turned sluggish as an ache swelled in the back of my throat. This man—the
person responsible for my brother’s death—expected me to live with him? In his house? Madness.
“And if we refuse?”
“I’m afraid there is little choice in the matter at this point. The arrangements are already complete.”
Mr. Browning narrowed his blue eyes, scrutinizing me, no doubt, as the numbing shock of his declaration faded to resignation across my face. He sighed. “I do realize Greybourne Hall might hold unfortunate associations for you—”
 “Unfortunate?” My voice came out a bit louder than I’d expected. “Is that what you choose to call it?”
He gave a sideways glance at Aunt Jo then returned to me, a pained look hovering about his eyes. His voice, however, remained firm. “Forgive me if I startled you. I hadn’t expected such a violent reaction to what I assumed was the logical next step. Perhaps I should make myself a bit clearer.” He gave a curt sigh. “I only intend for you to stay at Greybourne Hall till some place more suitable can be arranged. Unfortunately, there are few options at present.”
Ice enveloped my heart. I had no wish to travel to, let alone live at that dreadful house, not even for a single night. In his letters, Jacob had described the rambling structure as a gray pile of stones fit for vampires, or worse. I could only image Mr. Browning, this dark-headed devil before me, at home in such a place.

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I enjoyed the time period set during the 1800s in London. I could already feel a chill come over me as I started the book. The author grabbed my attention right away with the way she makes the story eerie and mysterious with words that send chills down your spine. It sure wasn't fun to be kicked out of your home and find out your new guardian was a distant cousin. Rebecca and her aunt are not thrilled but maybe Rebecca can gather information into her brothers' mysterious death.

Lewis was a strange character to me. I wasn't sure if he could be trusted and it made for a wonderful treat to find out more about him. The estate they were staying at sounded spooky and yes I would be the first to go explore the place. The land seemed to always be surrounded by fog with a heaviness that almost chocked you.  How safe is she and her aunt at this new dwelling?

Regency novels can be quite intriguing if written with words that take you back in time. The author does this with such brilliance that I started to really get into the story. Oh my the secrets, dishonesty, plotting and unsavory characters were there in the midst of the story. What I liked is that the author doesn't make things obvious, rather she has readers dig deep into the story and find clues that startle them. Not everyone is who they say they are. Rebecca is getting close to finding out something about her brother that could have a lasting affect on many people.

People in the area don't think highly of Lewis and in fact believe him to be a murderer and a danger to everyone. Rebecca will need to distinguish the truth from lies in order to trust the right person. I loved how the suspense builds and how Lewis and Rebecca start to grow close. Now my question for Rebecca is, Are you keeping your friends close and your enemies closer?  Get ready for a fast paced story that will leave you with unexpected outcomes and a book that has been crafted by an author that can write a story with layers that need to be peeled away to find the truth one step at a time.

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

Blog Stops

Emily Yager, July 12
Stories By Gina, July 12
Simple Harvest Reads, July 14 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Wishful Endings, July 15
Mary Hake, July 17
Genesis 5020, July 18
Bigreadersite, July 18
Remembrancy, July 20
Pause for Tales, July 21
Hallie Reads, July 23

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Abigail is giving away a grand prize of a copy of her book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

THE EXPRESS BRIDE by KIMBERLEY WOODHOUSE

 This was an especially intriguing book to read. I love learning everything I can about the Pony Express. Can you imagine getting your mail from a young man who rode a horse as fast as he could across country? The mail you receive may be old news by the time you receive it. I loved how the author described how fast the horses traveled to the way  stations and barely stopped long enough to get a fresh horse, deliver the mail and take off with a fresh pouch filled with mail going to other cities. We all know the saying about how the mail is delivered come  rain , hail  , sleet or snow. These men lived that everyday.

Jackie is running the station on her own since her father passed away. The town she lives in is barely a town with few buildings and a handful of people. You could tell everyone was close and I loved how they had church every Sunday sitting around a table. Their discussions were lively and everyone came away with a renewed sense of His presence. I would love to be part of this little town and experience all it had to offer.

There are two intriguing mysteries going on in the story that kept me glued to the book. One is about forgery and the other is about a woman and baby who disappeared a long time ago. Two men show up in town to investigate for their employers. One will take on the forgery case while the other will
try to determine if he has finally found the lost child that his employer has been searching for.

Elijah is a wonderful character and intends to help his employer with a special request. Elijah finds himself in a little town where Jackie is. I think he was impressed that she was running the station and had everything under control. There is an abundance of historical facts in the book which I loved reading about. I thought Elijah was an honorable man and I liked how he felt protective of Jackie.

It is a great story about forgiveness, redemption and faith.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

carla's Christmas Cunundrum FB Banner

About the Book

Book: Starla’s Christmas Conundrum
Author: Carol E. Keen
Genre: Holiday Romance
Release date: July 5, 2018
Starla's Christmas ConundrumIn the greatest conflict of her life, can she figure out who to trust?
Starla Devaroux is at the peak of her music career. Life as a popular Christian music artist is good. This Christmas she finds herself at the crossroads of several life-altering choices. It’s quite a conundrum; the path she takes this time will not only define her future but alter the lives of others as well.

Click here to purchase your copy.


About the Author

CarolKeenauthorphotoCarol E. Keen enjoys fresh coffee, hot tea, and a good book. She was published for several years in FAMA magazine (Freshwater And Marine Aquarium) as a contributing editor. She published her first book on CD, called Simply Seahorses.
She is the author of The Beauty Series and The Corandira Station, to name a few of her works. She currently resides in the South with her husband and family and spends her time writing, reading, working in photography, and being with her much loved critters.

More from Carol

This book started off in an anthology and now is its own ebook. Christmas and romance go well together, and so I set forth to create a book that could meet that challenge. When I started thinking about writing this, it made me want to use one of my favorite locations as the main setting for this book. When you read it, I hope you will feel like you had a mini-trip to that area. (It’s beautiful there!) I also wanted to include writing about things that I’m very involved in or know a great deal about. Music is one of those things. I hope you enjoy Starla and Mason’s story and the things that God brought about in their lives in this book. 

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What a nice refreshing story that brings Christmas in July for me. I was so comfortable reading this enchanting story, that I completely lost track of time. I have always wondered what it would be like to be famous. Of course you have fame and money, but there is always another side that we don't hear much about. I remember one particular Christian artist that fell hard and hit rock bottom. The media was all over it and pretty much crucified him in the news. 

This story was nice to read because Starla could sense that something was off with her. She was on top of the charts, concerts just about every night, but she couldn't feel God anywhere. I loved how the author showed us a side of Christian music where we hardly get a glimpse of. Starla recognizes that it it time to take a break and spend some time alone with God. The message is clear that sometimes we forget to invite God into our lives. Her need to refuel and seek God for direction was amazing to read. I loved all the scriptures and her heart to heart talks with God.

Mason was going through similar struggles as Starla and I enjoyed how God brought them together. Mason was a great character and I liked his openness to Starla. His life wasn't always easy but as he shared his story, Starla could see how much God had changed him. It's a great story with a little twist that took me by surprise. We always need to be on guard as the enemy will use anyone to cause us to stumble. The enemy loves to control  us  so he can cause havoc in our lives. 

I enjoyed the characters and how much I got from the story. Be prayfull about all things, trust God and listen to your heart. He does have a plan for each of us . We need to be able to have open ears and trust him. Enjoy this story of two people seeking God and finding happiness. 

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

Blog Stops

Artistic Nobody, July 6 (spotlight)
Simple Harvest Reads, July 10 (spotlight)
Power of Words, July 19 (Spotlight)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Carol is giving away a grand prize of a $10 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/e53f/starla-s-christmas-conundrum-celebration-tour-giveaw

Hadassah FB BannerAbout the Book

Book: Hadassah
Author: Diana Wallis Taylor
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
Release date: July 2, 2019
HadassahOne of the great heroines of the Old Testament, Hadassah was a beautiful, graceful young woman who put her faith in God and her guardian, her cousin Mordecai.
She dreams of marrying Shamir, a tall, handsome, studious young man who is the rabbi’s son. Her heart beats faster when she hears the sound of his deep voice as he reads the Torah. And she hopes that he will visit Mordecai soon to present a betrothal request.
Then, an upheaval in King Xerxes’s palace changes everything. Queen Vashti has been banished and an edict goes out for all qualified young virgins throughout the empire to be taken to the palace as he searches for a new queen.
Fear strikes in the hearts of many, including Mordecai, as he realizes Hadassah will be taken. To hide her identity as a Jew, he tells her to go by the name of Esther. Since he works as a record-keeper at the king’s gates, he can keep tabs on how she is doing.
Hadassah: Queen Esther of Persia imagines what life was like for the woman who saved her people—and perhaps found love in the process.


About the Author

Wallis-Taylor, DianaDiana Wallis Taylor was first published at the age of twelve, when she sold a poem to a church newsletter. After receiving her B.A. in Elementary Education at San Diego State University, she was an elementary school teacher for twenty-two years. Diana has also sold real estate, opened two coffeehouse/used book stores, and was a conference director for a private Christian college.
She has an extensive portfolio of published works, including a collection of poetry; an Easter cantata, written with a musical collaborator; contributions to various magazines and compilations; and several books, including Lydia, Woman of PhilippiMary, Chosen of GodRuth, Mother of Kings; and Halloween: Harmless Fun or Risky Business?
Learn more at www.dianawallistaylor.com.

Read an Excerpt

Besides the usual vendors, there were strange, sweaty men with beady eyes who were looking to get rich from the additional population.
In the wee hours of the morning, while Mordecai sat with his head in his hands, silently praying, Jerusha stopped breathing, slipping away so quietly that Hadassah thought she was still sleeping.
One day, to the people’s relief, the news was spread that the unwelcome banquet guests had been ordered back to their provinces—to prepare for war.
Instead of bowing, Hadassah smiled unabashedly and gazed directly at the king, who at that moment had turned his head.
“Do not give your name as Hadassah, but tell them it is Esther, which is a Persian name. I would have you hide your Jewish heritage for now.”
She felt their eyes silently appraising her; some with open interest, some with sympathy, and others with calculating shrewdness.
Esther asked each maid gentle, innocuous questions about her homeland, favorite foods, culture, and the like, listening attentively to their answers and making sure to speak to them by name both to let them know they were important to her and also to help her remember who was who.
“If you maidens help me to be my very best when I am called to the king’s chambers, if he honors me by selecting me as his queen, I will not forget you, who helped to put the crown on my head.”
Esther had seen some of the women pass her quarters so laden with jewelry they could hardly walk. She wanted to laugh out loud, but suppressed even a smile.
Recognition came. “Ah, the maiden in the crowd. I thought about you many times.” He moved closer. “I remember your hair, like a cloud around your face.”


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One of the best things about this book is how the author takes a story from the bible and brings it to life. I could picture Hadassah as a young girl. She was in awe of her new home after losing her family. She is taken to a place by relatives that bring her a better life. I loved reading how she honored her new life and respected those who were her new parents. 

The beauty of the land, the people at the market place and the grand banquet all make the story so realistic. I can't imagine what it would be like to line the streets waiting for a glimpse of the King. His power was felt throughout the land and some feared that a war was soon to break out. I loved reading how Hadassah became Queen Esther.

I appreciate the authors research done for this book and added a depth of biblical truth to the story. Some parts of the story did bring up how Jews were treated and had to be careful around certain people while in the marketplace. I enjoyed getting to know how it might have been for Esther as she became Queen and the decisions she had to make. I always enjoy retelling of bible stories when the author can capture the heart of the characters and make us think about what it must have been like living during times of danger and uncertainty. Overall the story was good and makes for a great book to see what life may have been like for Esther who became Queen.

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


Blog Stops

Hallie Reads, July 4
EmpowerMoms, July 7
Madeline Hope, July 7
Moments, July 8
Emily Yager, July 9
Mary Hake, July 11
Splashes of Joy, July 12
Simple Harvest Reads, July 12 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Bigreadersite, July 13
Pause for Tales, July 13
Henry Happens, July 17

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Diana is giving away a grand prize of a $20 Starbucks card and a surprise book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.