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Thursday, November 23, 2017


It’s always nice to visit old friends and a beautiful little town tucked away in the mountains. I remember going to Idaho when I was a kid. I never forgot the beautiful scenery and the quaint little towns we drove through. The author has brought those memories back with a delightful story .

Sam has everything going for her far away from Idaho. She is a great accountant but I wouldn’t say she is exactly happy. After losing her father in a tragic accident, it has caused her to be fearful. I know first hand about fear and anxiety. It is not easy to live each day worrying if something is going to happen. I was happy to read that Sam was going back home to care for her grandmother who had been in an accident. I think Sam’s grandmother stole the show in this story. She has wisdom that really helps Sam and knows her granddaughter is not herself. Having Sam take a leave from work to help her grandmother recover was the perfect medicine for her. Their bond was strong and it was nice to read that Sam really listened and appreciated her grandmother’s advice.

Nick and Sam were an item at one time, but that all changed one day. I think when they run into each other again, hurts that had never been resolved come flowing to the surface. One thing I liked about Nick was his determination. Dealing with TBI is not easy for Nick but he sure doesn’t let that stop him from wanting to find love. Will Sam and Nick rekindle their feelings? I loved how the characters each had fears that needed to conquer and relied on God to help them. The story is well written and I loved how the author reminds us to trust God in everything.

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

If there was ever a book that captures the heart of the Civil War, this book certainly has proven its ability to transport readers back in time. The detail and historical facts make the story come alive. I could see the men in the battlefield and hear their cries as bullets can be heard in the distance. The author has done an outstanding job of taking a subject and given it breath and realism.

There are several characters that stand out in this book. They each grabbed my attention for different reasons. Instead of naming the characters I am choosing to do my review a bit different for this book. The two main women in the story each had been hurt and ridiculed in some way. Some of the men in town mocked them and made them feel dirty and ashamed. I kept thinking of the scripture, “He who is without sin, cast the first stone,” The women were brave, strong , fierce and each find a way to hold their head up with dignity.

Two of the men in the story fought on the battlefield and knew how hard it was to forget what they did in order to survive. They have remorse for the desperation they felt as they found ways to get food and blankets. What I liked about the story is how each of the four main characters carried around guilt and through faith and the help of friends, they were able to let the past go.

There are some difficult moments in the story that was hard to read, but I felt it was necessary so readers would understand what torture and humility the women went through. Will the town ever welcome these two women? What happens when the two men find out that one person is responsible for the pain they have each gone through? I loved the emotional turmoil the men felt and how they needed to “avenge the honor of the women,” The story is one that I thought was very well written with gritty details that show readers how hard it was during the Civil War. I would love to see this book become  a movie. It would be a powerful and emotional journey to show how God can forgive and redeem people.

I received a copy of this book from The Fiction Guild. The review is my own opinion.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Let Scripture reform the next generation.

There are many different kinds of legacies we can leave, but sharing yourself and your faith with the next generation will always stand the test of time. Through showing himself and his wisdom in the book of Proverbs, God has also left his legacy with us and relies on us to share it with our children and grandchildren. But before we can share that wisdom, first we must grow in our own understanding and knowledge and record, reflect, and consider what we have learned.
Pass it On provides readers with an opportunity to create a legacy of wisdom and faith and to share it with their children and grandchildren. As readers are guided through the book of Proverbs, they are asked to create their own personalized, wisdom journal with the aim of giving it to someone they love. Through careful study, answering questions, writing out prayers, and sharing personal stories, readers can create a lasting keepsake for themselves and for their families and friends.
Created by Champ Thornton, best-selling author of The Radical Book for Kids  Pass It Onis an innovative resource to strengthen families and help them grow in their love for God and each other. This is a perfect gift for an older and wiser friend or relative, so they can share themselves and what they have learned about God with the next generation.
The fresh and careful translation provided comes from Dr. Bruce Waltke, who, now in his eighties, has devoted his life to a humble and Christ-focused study of God s Word, and especially the book of Proverbs. His two-volume work on Proverbs is considered by many as the premier commentary in the English language. As you study the translation of individual chapters, add your own comments in the margins. And feel free to circle, underline, and connect key words or phrases as you see them in the chapter for the day.

Champ Thornton, MDiv, is associate pastor at Ogletown Baptist Church in Delaware. He has pastored in South Carolina and served as director of SOMA, a ministry training school in Columbus, OH.


When I received this book, I was quite pleased with the design and how sturdy the book is. It is really a treasure to have a journal of this caliber to study, write down your thoughts and then pass it on. It can be passed to a family member, a friend or perhaps someone needing a word from God. The outside cover really caught my eye. The feather has meaning for our family because we are part Native American. This journal I hope will bless family members to come. I pray they read my thoughts, add theirs and pass it on to the next generation.

The journal is a study on Proverbs. It is divided into chapters and goes into depth about the scriptures. I love how there are questions for you to fill out to share your thoughts and as you do , your personal story is written in the journal. I think how much of a blessing this will be to my children as they see my thoughts of what God spoke to me. I highly recommend this to everyone. The journal is meant to guide you through scriptures, reflect on them and share your thoughts. I pray that the journal not only blesses you, but blesses generations to come.

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

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out of the ordinary FB Banner copy

About the Book

out of the ordinary
Name of book: Out of the Ordinary
Author: Jen Turano
Genre: Christian historical
Release Date: November 7, 2017
“With all the charm of a Regency romance, the humor of a drawing room farce, and the swoonworthy delight of a fairy tale, Turano’s first Apart from the Crowd historical absolutely sparkles.”–Publishers Weekly on Behind the Scenes
Working as a paid companion may be quite commonplace, but Miss Gertrude Cadwalader’s eccentric employer makes her job unpredictable, to say the least. She finds herself carrying out an array of highly unusual tasks, including wearing peculiar outfits and returning items the woman pilfered. But when the wealthy Mrs. Sinclair catches Gertrude sneaking around the Sinclair yacht with some of the missing items in her possession, she immediately jumps to the wrong conclusion.
Shipping magnate Harrison Sinclair is caught in the middle of a misunderstanding between his mother and Gertrude, but he can’t help coming to his friend’s defense. Even as he hopes their friendship might become something more, Harrison is unprepared for the outlandish escapades that seem to follow the lovely, anything-but-ordinary Gertrude at every turn.
“The second installment of Turano’s Apart from the Crowd series is laugh-out-loud enjoyable. The foibles of the characters, balanced out with a light-hearted yet meaningful love story, is a true treat. . . . All of the threads are tied together in the end, even the small mysteries and side stories. It makes for a very satisfying read when the last page is turned.”–RT Book Reviews
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

jen turanoJen Turano, author of nine books and two novellas, is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in clothing and textiles. She is a member of ACFW and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Visit her website at

Q & A with Jen Turano

What Readers Want to Know from Jen
Hey Everyone! Thank you so much for stopping by today. Because I’m in the midst of a first draft, and in case you don’t know, I don’t actually care for first drafts – all those pesky blank pages, but…I’m getting off track…where was I? Oh yes, why I brought up first drafts in the first place. You see, I’m a little scattered when I’m doing a draft, and because of that, and because my mind is a scary place to visit while filling up those already-mentioned blank pages, I was having a tough time coming up with a post for Celebrate Lit. That’s why I reached out to my fabulous readers, and…here are some of the questions their inquiring minds wanted to know about me or my books. I hope you enjoy them!

Why write in the Gilded Age?
When I started writing historical romance after experimenting with other genres, I didn’t write Gilded age but Regency pieces. However, when I ran across the book “The Court of Mrs. Astor in Gilded Age New York” by Greg King, I was intrigued, and a little baffled about how it came to be that I was so unfamiliar with that riveting time in history. It’s an era where unprecedented fortunes were made at a remarkable rate, those fortunes responsible for so many scandals that I’ll have enough fodder for stories to last me for years. The antics of the members of high society are vastly intriguing, as are the fashions of the day, which is exactly why I’ve never had second thoughts about choosing to write Gilded Age romances.

How do you come up with such unusual names for your characters?
I get asked this a lot. And, contrary to popular belief, I don’t make up the names of my characters. I search through obituaries from the 1800’s, peruse books on the New York Four-Hundred (those were members of high society – chosen by Mr. Ward McAllister, the social arbiter of the day,) and I also scour old census records. I do occasionally pair a first name with a different surname so that my main characters aren’t real historic figures because that can get tricky. Not long ago, while reading through Memoirs of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania: Person and Genealogical, Volume 1, I found a bit on my great-grandfather, which was cool – not that I’ll be using him, but I might have a character modeled after him at some point in time. Another interesting tidbit about choosing names is this – names only work for me if the characters decide they like the names I select for them. If they don’t like the name, they simply stop cooperating. I can’t write their stories until I choose another name. An example – I was recently going to name a heroine Georgianna – but it was like trying to write through mud. As soon as I changed her name to Myrtle, I was back in business.

What is the most ordinary thing you enjoy doing?
I love to shovel snow.

Who is responsible for your book covers? Do you choose the model/setting?
Bethany House’s design team does all of my covers, and occasionally they hire out the job to other design houses. The only input I give is when I send in a character/setting sheet, describing my heroine and listing a few scenes that I feel might be good for the background. In “Out of the Ordinary,” I suggested having Gertrude on or near a boat, and the design team then hired a model who resembled my character sketch and put her on a boat.

Which character has been the most difficult to write?
All of my characters give me trouble at some point in time, but recently, Mrs. Davenport was the character who was being incredibly difficult. For the first three edits of “Out of the Ordinary,” she was too complicated and a bit on the dark side, but after I changed her backstory, and remembered she was supposed to be eccentric, not deranged, she turned into a delightful lady, one I enjoyed writing.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever Googled while doing research for a book?
I don’t know if this is crazy, more on the lines of idiotic, but I once googled Gentleman’s Clubs when I was looking for an all-male club my hero would want to join. That was a definite mistake, especially since I didn’t include a very important word – historic. Well, the next thing you know, all sorts of naughty sites were flashing in front of my eyes, and to this day, I still get advertisements for singles looking for a good time and all sorts of other interesting…offers.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?
Nope, it never entered my head to pursue a career in writing, nor was I ever a person to even keep a diary or a journal. I’m pretty sure I wanted to be a movie star when I was younger, but when that didn’t pan out, I majored in fashion and spent quite a few years working for department stores. It wasn’t until my son was in third grade and we wrote a book together just for fun that I began entertaining the thought of trying to see my stories in print.

How long did it take you to break into the publishing world, and how many books did you write before that happened?
What everyone needs to understand is that publishing is a cut-throat business. I had no idea when I decided to try and get published what the competition was like, and if I had, well, I might have nipped the whole idea of getting a book into print right in the bud. But, because I knew I only wanted to go the traditional route, it soon became clear, what with all the suggestions I was getting about the work I was sending out to agents, that I needed to up my game…a lot. I experimented with quite a few different genres – middle grade, YA, contemporary women’s fiction, Regency romance, and then Gilded Age, getting really proficient with query letters in the process. It wasn’t until I started writing historical romance, though, that I really began getting requests for full manuscript. After I’d been writing for about three years, I finally signed with an agent. She never sold the book she signed on to represent, but after I wrote “A Change of Fortune,” she sold that within two months. Long story short – it took me about seven years to get published from the time I wrote my first book, and…I have seven manuscripts that will never see the light of day because they’re awful.
Is there a reason you include so many animals in your stories?
I’ve always been an animal lover, and as such, I really enjoy writing different animals into my scenes. Dogs are my favorites, followed by pigs, and most of the characteristics my animals have are traits I’ve seen in real life. Matilda, the pig in “A Match of Wits,” was inspired by a pig I used to see in New York. She was so quirky, as well as intelligent, that I knew I would have to write a pig in at least one of my stories. This current series does not have as many animals because I do want to keep my stories fresh. But, having said that, my next series finds my heroine visiting a farm, and well, I don’t know many farms that don’t have animals, especially adorable cows by the name of Buttercup that may or may not have the odd tendency of moseying into the house to eat pie whenever the urge strikes.

Last question – Have any of the crazy antics in your books been inspired by real-life events???

I seem to be a magnet for weird things happening, so…yes, quite a few of those antics were inspired by real life events. I’ll share just one since I do need to get back to that first draft. I live near Denver, and when my son was little, we used to visit the Denver Zoo. That zoo just happens to have a very large flock of peacocks – peacocks that took one look at me one day – and I must add that I wasn’t doing anything except pulling my son in a wagon, and the next thing I knew, I was being chased through the zoo by what seemed to me to be the entire flock of peacocks – all seemingly intent on trying to murder me. Funny how fast a mom can run while pulling a wagon when in fear for her life. My son thought it was fabulous fun, and bless those members of the staff who came to my rescue. They were almost successful in not laughing, and…I received a free lunch after the dastardly peacocks were chased away. That event is what inspired me to write a mad flock of peacocks in “In Good Company.”

Thank you so much for visiting me today. Hope I answered a few questions you may have about me!
All the best,
~ Jen ~


Once again the author has written a beautiful story with characters that are so likeable you want to be their friend. Gertrude is funny, loyal and full of life. She has her hands full trying to keep up with Mrs Davenport. It isn’t easy to be a companion to an elderly lady that has a habit of “borrowing” trinkets and such. There is one scene that had me rolling on the floor laughing. I’m not sure what possessed Mrs. Davenport to make such a hideous dress for Gertrude to wear. The outrageous dress with a little extra in the back causes Gertrude to become trapped in an embarrassing way. The exploits that Mrs. Davenport puts Gertrude through is beyond the norm for a hired companion. 

Harrison is one handsome man who is quite wealthy. His politeness and honesty is honorable. All the ladies are hammering to become his wife. I must say he has a strange way of dressing. I could see the stripped pants and odd color combinations as he walked into a room. It’s a good thing he is handsome, because he lacks any style of fashion. I loved how he came to Gertrude’s aide and never once doubted her guilt of things being said about her. 

I loved the beautiful story that Gertrude shared about her past with Harrison. For so long she has held onto the shame of something she had no control over. I loved how forgiveness was presented in the story. It is hard to forgive yourself , but sometimes it’s even harder to think that God would forgive you. The lessons in the book are many and were well written by an author who has a knack for sharing compassionate words that encourage and fill readers with hope. Don’t miss this great adventure and see if Gertrude can forgive herself of a past that has held her back. Will Mrs. Davenport open up about her past? Can she find peace ? Grab your copy today . 

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

Blog stops

Vicky sluiter, November 11
Bookworm Mama, November 11
cherylbbookblog, November 11
Book by Book, November 11
Lane Hill House, November 12
C Jane Read, November 12
The Power of Words, November 12
Smiling Book Reviews, November 13
Moments Dipped in Ink, November 13
Faithfully Bookish, November 14
BigreadersiteNovember 14
Mommynificent, November 14
All 4 and About Books, November 14
Just the Write Escape, November 15
allofakindmom, November 15
Pause for Tales, November 16
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, November 16
Neverending Stories, November 17
Have A Wonderful Day, November 17
Christian Bookaholic, November 17
A Reader’s Brain, November 18
Karen Sue Hadley, November 18
The April JournalNovember 18
Cafinated Reads, November 18
Bibliophile ReviewsNovember 19
Blogging With CarolNovember 19
Mary Hake, November 19
Baker Kella, November 20
Rachel’s Back Talk, November 20
Texas Book-aholic, November 20
Joy of ReadingNovember 21
Remembrancy, November 21
Splashes of JoyNovember 22
amandainpa, November 22
A Greater YesNovember 23
Radiant Light, November 24


To celebrate the tour, Bethany House is giving away a grand prize of Two Jen Turano Novels and a $20 Starbucks Gift Card!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

Into a silent world FB banner copy

About the Book

into a slient world
Title: Into a Silent World
Author: Carmina Edwards
Genre: Biography, Memoir
Release Date: August 15, 2016
Following Amy’s adventures in A Door Cracked Open, she heads into a world which will test her faith and perseverance to the limit. Instead of settling into a simple, safe and unchanging life like she imagined, Amy is strongly drawn to a vocation with even higher requirements, prompting her to plan some seemingly impossible missions in order to reach her goal.
Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author

222938_1045001648055_1316040273_30132258_9921_n[1]I am a mother of two wonderful grown up children and currently living in the UK, after living in Sweden for three years where I wrote my first book, “A Door Cracked Open.” I was blessed to be able to spend six months in USA before returning to the UK, my home country, to work with my editor in California on the edits of this book and visit friends.
I am an avid reader and linguist, having also spent some years living in France and have been fortunate enough to have taught Swedish and French over twenty-five years and translate for businesses and manuscripts in both languages. Being unemployed the past few years, has led to me becoming homeless. However, I never give up hope. As I try to portray in my books, God has always had His hand on me. Once again, He has stepped in right at the last minute. I now have a new job in Sweden and will be moving back there. Because I feel passionately about helping the homeless, a large percentage of my royalties will go directly to them.

Guest Post from Carmina Edwards

“Into a Silent World” follows on from Amy’s story in “A Door Cracked Open.”
With a new beginning ahead of her, a long standing dream about to be realized, she was unprepared for the events which were about to unfold over the next two years.
Why would God send her to this place of “absolute conviction” and allow her to remain there for that long, if He never meant for her to be there? Amy struggles to understand and seeks His will, but determined that it was His plan, she persevered in order for her dream to be fulfilled.


Although I liked the book, I found Amy at times to be to impatient and stubborn. She knows that God has called her to be a nun. She is quite young to be thinking of this vocation and the Sisters are not sure she is ready. I found the behind the scenes was very interesting. It would be very difficult to give up everything and live in silence isolated from the world. The nuns work hard everyday, and at times there never seemed to be much time for their selves. It is a very structured life and Amy was determined that this is what God has called her to do.

Amy has great qualities such as determination, compassion , love for God and a desire to serve Him. I loved how the author gave us a tour of what a nun does throughout the day. It is a rewarding job and I am blessed by those who are called to do this. There was a part in the book that really broke my heart. When you read about the elderly being cared for in deplorable conditions , you will be angry and sad at the same time. I was happy to see that Amy stood up and did something to help them. I admired her for speaking up and getting them help. I admire how Amy knew she was to be at a certain place even though it would be a vow of silence most of the time. She does go through many tests to prove she is suppose to be there. The book is good but at times I felt like it kinda dragged in places. I was a little impatient as she kept going from one place to another. The author leaves us with a cliffhanger, so I have to read the next book to find out what happens to Amy. Does she get to stay at the place she feels God is calling her to?

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


Just Jo’Anne, November 7
Mary Hake, November 8
Janices book review, November 10
Reading Is My SuperPower, November 13 (Interview)
The Power of Words, November 14 (Interview)
margaret kazmierczak, November 15
Splashes of Joy, November 16
A Reader’s BrainNovember 17
Multifarious, November 18
Artistic Nobody, November 19 (Karin Perry guest post)
Texas Book-aholic, November 20


To celebrate her tour, Carmina is giving away
Grand Prize:
Paperback copies of A Door Cracked Open & Into a Silent World
1st – 3rd place:
Ebook copy of A Door Cracked Open!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!