Books, Authors and multiple genres. To promote, encourage and discover authors for the book-aholic in all of us.
Search This Blog
Friday, June 30, 2023
About the Book
Author: Lisa T. Bergren
Genre: Romantic Fantasy
Release date: June 13, 2023
Can a family bond stand the test of time?
Lady Tiliani Forelli is the epitome of the She-Wolves who raised her, an adept archer with a mind of her own. It is long past time for her to wed, but she deems each young lord who comes to bid for her hand lacking. With battles upon their border, and rumors of war growing louder on every front, Lady Forelli’s decision could secure her kingdom’s peace… or bring about its destruction.
Centuries later, history major Lucia Betarrini takes a summer job alongside her twin, Domenico, as a period actor at Castello Forelli in Italy. As incoming college seniors, this might be their last chance to spend meaningful time together, so she’s soaking up every minute. But when Nico’s theory that their lost Betarrini relatives have traveled through time becomes potentially real—and they might be able to follow—Luci fears they’ll be forever divided.
Lisa T. Bergren is the author of over sixty books spanning a variety of genres, from children’s picture books to women’s historical fiction to supernatural suspense and time travel. She lives with her husband and three gradually-flying-from-the-nest young adult children.
More from Lisa
NEVER GO TO ITALY! BUT IF YOU DO…
Never go to Italy, I tell everyone, because it gets under your skin and then you have to go back! I’ve been six times over the years. Once with Tim and our BFFs, once with my extended family, twice with a daughter in tow (doing research in Rome and Venice), once to Tuscany alone for a romantic ten days with Tim, and this last summer, with extended family again. It was our 30th anniversary and so we went as far north as the Dolomites (jaw-dropping, Italian Alps). And in the future I want to explore the whole coast of Italy—on both sides!
As a writer it’s glorious, because you get to see remnants of history all around you! I get super excited when I get to walk through the remains of a castle or Roman ruins or even among vineyards, soaking up the smells and sights and cataloging details I can put in my novel so readers feel like they are there too. My family is patient with my sign-reading and desire to take extra long walks, trying to outline what it would be like in medieval times. The food, the views, the people make them pretty happy travel companions.
I am frequently asked what I would recommend for a travel itinerary for people going for the first time. Here’s what I tell them:
THE INTRO TO ITALY ITINERARY
If possible, I highly recommend you go late-Spring or in the Fall. Summer is SO much more crowded and winter can be cold/rainy/snowy!
Day 1: Using an “open-jawed” ticket (arriving from one airport, departing from another), fly to Italia!
Day 2: Arrive in Rome in the afternoon/eve. (You lose some hours/time zones in transit!) Stay up until at least 9 or 10, walking the streets, eating gelato, soaking up being in ROME! The goal is to get your body in the right time zone/avoid jet lag.
Day 3: Morning Colosseum tour with a guide group that will take you to the basement, where the gladiators prepared and animals were caged, then on to the Forum. Spend the afternoon walking to quintessential sites such as the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona. Sit and sip something, watching the tourists and locals. Find a fun restaurant for dinner—you’ll want reservations at the most popular places, so research before you go.
Day 4: Morning Vatican tour/Sistine Chapel. Afternoon exploring other sites important to you.
Day 5: Taxi back to airport to rent a car; drive to Tuscany; check into a villa or agriturismo for five days. My preference is somewhere around Montepulciano or Siena. Many provide nightly dinners or you may want to cook!
Day 6-9: Explore a different hill town each day. My favorites are Montepulciano, Siena, Pienza. But there are so many. Just follow your nose one day!
Day 10: Return car to Rome early morning; take train to Florence for the day/night. Have advance reservations to “The David.” Consider reservations for the Uffizi if you’re a fan of classic art. Just explore the city if you’d rather not. Climb the Duomo for a fantastic view of the city.
Day 11: Train to Venice; check into a hotel on the Grand Canal or one of the smaller ones. Start getting your bearings by riding the water bus. It’s noisy but you can see the whole canal for little $. Find a great place for dinner. Again, do some research before you go and make reservations!
Day 12-13: Saint Mark’s (pay to climb to next level!); pay to go up the Campanile (tower) at sunset; walk/wander far enough to get out of the tourist zone—the old naval yard is cool. Take the water bus out to Torcello, the birthplace of Venice. Stop at Murano and Burano. Pay for a private water taxi tour at sunset or take the classic gondola ride.
Day 14: Take a water taxi to the airport. It’s a short walk from the docks and a very cool way to end your trip. Arrivederci! (Which means, “Until we meet again.” Because now, you’ve BEEN there. And you’ll HAVE to return! It’s THAT great!)
Come along on a journey where time travel takes us to a faraway place with adventure and a dose of faith. I found that a particular encounter between two characters really made me look at myself. They are discussing prayer and one asked the other if they pray. The captan said, “Every time I go into battle and, every time I come out.” What was interesting was he said he didn’t pray in between. We do the same thing. When we are in trouble or in a “battle” we are quick to pray. When everything is going well we don’t pray. Wouldn’t it be nice if we prayed all the time instead of when we need something? Our relationship with Him would grow if we took the time to pray in good times and bad.
Lady Tiliani is asked to do something that could save the kingdom but there is a chance that she could fail and lose everything for her family . I don’t know if I could marry someone I didn’t love but then I think about how we “should lay down one’s life for our friends.” Lady Tiliani has much to consider and what a burden has been bestowed on her.
I loved following the twins as they try to discover secrets from their ancestors. Their curiosity carries them on their journey as we travel in time to find secrets, She Wolves, archeology digs where I held my breath and swoon worthy moments which well you have to read to find out. Overall a great book that has everything you want to keep your attention and fall in love with the characters. I usually say which character is my favorite but I can’t because they all had a purpose in the story. The faith weaves throughout and I am hooked on this series.
I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.
Mary’s Language Skills Could Help End the War in the Pacific Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.
Mary Wishram is desperate to hang on to her few loved ones, a brother fighting in the South Pacific and Japanese friends in a relocation camp. Determined to end the war by any means necessary, she is willing to use her language skills as Yakama tribe member to become a spy and face any danger to bring them all home safe.
John Painted Horse struggles with the loss of his father who died in WWI for a country that didn’t consider him a United States citizen, much less give him the right to vote. He is desperate to bring long overdue recognition and honor to his people, no matter the cost.
Can they heal from their past traumas and find a peace, love, and a deeper relationship with God, before it’s too late?
Debby Lee was raised in the cozy little town of Toledo, Washington. She has been writing since she was a small child, and has written several novels, but never forgets home. The Northwest Christian Writers Association and Romance Writers of America are two organizations that Debby enjoys being a part of. As a self professed nature lover, and an avid listener of 1960’s folk music, Debby can’t help but feel like a hippie child who wasn’t born soon enough to attend Woodstock. She wishes she could run barefoot all year long, but often does anyway in the grass and on the beaches in her hamlet that is the cold and rainy southwest Washington. During football season, Debby cheers on the Seattle Seahawks along with legions of other devoted fans. She’s also filled with wanderlust and dreams of visiting Denmark, Italy, and Morocco someday. Debby loves connecting with her readers through her website at www.booksbydebbylee.com
More from Debby
MY ATTEMPT AT MEATHOD WRITING
It was a warm, sunny September morning on my uncle’s farm, where I used an entrenching tool to dig my foxhole. A gentle breeze blew as I dug, and cooled my sweat-streaked forehead. The little shovel, with a handle roughly three feet long, did a fair job of breaking the dirt beneath my feet. Scoopful by scoopful, I managed to dig a hole about two feet deep, six feet long, and three feet wide.
I stood over this gaping pit that looked more like a grave. This was where I intended to sleep when darkness fell. I wondered, asked myself, “Will I make it through the night?”
My husband and I walked the perimeter of my uncle’s property. We noticed evidence of coyotes not more than one-hundred yards from my foxhole. Though my husband agreed to sleep in his truck not far from me, with a loaded pistol at the ready, we were still nervous about my sleeping arrangements. A few relatives laughed at my idea. I’m sure they thought I wouldn’t last more than a few hours out there that night.
I found a bucket old tin cans and a roll of string. I used my entrenching tool as a hammer and pounded holes in the cans and then strung a trip wire. Surely this would scare away any curious predators. I hoped.
My husband did tell me, “If you hear wolves or coyotes howling, get in the truck!”
By this time it was late in the evening and I was starving. In an attempt to stay in character, I reached for an MRE. That’s Meals Ready to Eat, today’s equivalent to K rations and C rations. I never thought I’d be hungry enough to suck cold mashed potatoes from a plastic pouch.
I went to bed that night clutching my entrenching tool, ready to fight off any critters who ventured too close. Sleep didn’t come easy that night. The ground was hard, uneven, and cold, bone-chilling cold. I shivered and shivered in a futile effort to keep warm.
The things that ran through my mind. I gazed at the inky, black sky and located the North Star. I thought of runaway slaves. How cold and terribly frightened they had to have been. And how brave and courageous, too.
Later, I realized my trip wire was enough to alert me to coyotes, but not snakes or rats. Was I strong enough, mentally, physically, to beat off a hoard of rats? A pack of hungry coyotes, if they broke through my tripwire?
Honestly, I was terrified. Not necessarily of falling to sleep, but falling to sleep and being jolted awake having to fight for my safety. I meditated on scriptures and continuously whispered, “If I can just make it until daylight.”
I don’t think I slept more than three hours that night, an hour here, another there. The sun lightened the gray sky. I climbed from my foxhole, my back and muscles were stiff and sore, but I was thankful to see the sun.
I was thankful for so much more. My night in a foxhole was ludicrously luxurious compared to those brave soldiers who fought during WWII and the wars since then. At least I didn’t have to contend with bombs or grenades raining down on me.
I can’t imagine going to bed night after night, wondering if bombs, grenades, or gunfire would pierce the air, wondering if my buddies and I would be shot or blown to bits, wondering if I’d live to see sunrise. My respect for soldiers grew a thousand-fold that night.
I’ve visited my uncle’s farm several times since then. I always gaze across the partially wooded forty acres and I remember that night. And remember the sacrifices our soldiers made for me, for democracy, and for freedom.
Two unlikely people meet and form a bond that will see them through tragedy and danger. Their mission is difficult and at times they are angry that now they are valuable to the corps, but not too long ago they were shunned, made fun of and not needed. How do you overcome this feeling of bitterness and mistrust to help during war?
I loved this story and how we enter into the world where secret coders are in constant danger and deceit runs rampant. The war is hard on everyone but for our hero and heroine it becomes a need to survive, free their loved ones and find a deeper faith. Mary and John are keeping secrets from each other but I loved how their mission was connected. I appreciate how the author shined a light on Native Americans and their contribution to the war. As John and Mary grow closer their missions become a stumbling block between them. Is is wrong to keep secrets from someone you care about to ensure the safety of many?
In the midst of danger a sweet romance develops between John and Mary. I liked their strolls on the beach and how content they were as they gazed at the moon. I love when John starts to share about God and tells Mary, “Every time I look at the moon, I think of God.” He goes on to tell her that like the moon, “God was the same last night, is tonight, and will be forever and ever, until the end of time.” Let’s let that sink in for a moment. God is always with us, never changing and a place to find hope and peace.
As the war continues Mary and John are sent out on different missions. Their goodbyes were bittersweet as they promised to meet at their special spot when they returned. Mary is strong and determined to help her country as she becomes a spy. I admired her compassion for the soldiers who were being sent to the convent where she was posing as a nun. She never gave up hope of finding her brother who was a POW.
John is sent on his mission into the field where bullets fly by as the enemy is determined to destroy him and the other soldiers he is with. They have to be alert at all times but there are moments where John’s mind slips into thinking about Mary. I loved the historical facts the author includes in the story to make it more realistic.
Be prepared for some tense moments as danger draws near for both John and Mary. Will they ever get home to meet at their special spot. Does Mary find her brother? With an exciting ending these questions will be answered. The faith element in the story is good and directs Mary to seek Him in her darkest moment.
“Bitterness is a terrible poison .”
I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.
Fireworks aren't the only things causing sparks this Fourth of July in Holiday Junction! The much-awaited sixth book in the Holiday Cozy Mystery series, Fourth of July Forgery, immerses readers in a mystery that's more intricate than a firework's design.
When the festive atmosphere is dampened by the grim discovery of a body on the shore, it's up to our firecracker reporter, Violet Rhinehammer, to fizzle out the truth. Delving into the shadowy world of art dealing and potential forgeries, Violet must crack this case faster than a skyrocket, all while trying to keep her relationships and reputation from going up in smoke.
As she navigates the labyrinth of deception and accusation, Violet realizes that even in Holiday Junction, secrets can still explode like a M80. Can she solve the puzzle before the last sparkler has fizzled out, or will the fuse on this mystery burn too quickly for her to handle?
Featuring a captivating blend of small-town charm, holiday high-jinks, and a puzzling mystery, Fourth of July Forgery is a firecracker of a summer read, sure to delight cozy mystery fans and holiday enthusiasts alike. This book is more entertaining than a grand finale of fireworks, proving once again that when it comes to holiday mysteries, Violet Rhinehammer is the 'bomb'!"
It’s time for another adventure with Violet and her sassy mama. These two together make for lots of laugh as they discover secrets n the quaint town. I love how the town celebrates every holiday with parades, food, entertainment and shopping. Stumbling upon a body at the beach, Violet is ready to get answers . Too bad there is a storm brewing in the town as fingers start pointing at each other. Who is this man that is found dead and what does his involvement in the art world cause many to fear for their safety?
As Violet starts her investigation she finds herself in the Art District. It is so different then back in town and I loved how the author visually took us on a tour with vivid details of art work. I felt like I was walking beside Violet and the guide as the paintings and sculptures emitted beauty and prestige. As they say, “every picture is worth a thousand words,” and these were speaking clearly for all to hear. Violet begins to understand the value and how many people would desire to have one of these works of art in their home.
Get ready for a trip into the art world where danger lurks just behind closed doors. Violet and her instincts find her face to face with the killer. I kind of suspected this person but was more focused on someone else that the author fooled me once again. With fireworks, laughs and a few twists the story it reminds us that Holiday Junction is filled with love, excitement and adventure.
“We can’t let fear hold us back from seeking the truth.”
I received a digital copy of this book from the author. The review is my own opinion.
Though Margo Durand invests her whole heart into working for her family’s newspaper, her father refuses to modernize, and she harbors a secret fear of approaching interviewees and all things dangerous—except riding her Vespa everywhere. But when Margo follows evidence that two government officials are corrupt, Margo discovers danger, intrigue, and a legal sort of blackmail.
Professional race car driver, Steve Grayson, arrives to finish recuperating and overcome his fear of getting back on the track while pursuing his desire to open a race car driving school on Le Cadeau Île. If he can find the money and convince the owner to sell.
When Margo’s best friend sets Margo up with Steve as a tour guide, conveniently forgetting to tell him Margo is a reporter, they tour the islands until Steve is willingly dragged into the investigation. The investigation only opens new questions, creates new trials, and has the potential to destroy their budding romance.
Does pursuing a relationship just before he leaves to take part in one last racing season even make sense?
Take a trip to the Suamalie Islands where palm trees sway, the sand and sea pulse with life, and the people will steal your heart.
Susan K. Beatty is in her third career—from journalist to homeschool tech writer to her life-long dream of becoming a novelist. She is proof you can start a new writing career late in life. Susan released her first published fiction in September 2019, and now an awarding winner author, this is her third novel, with several novelettes and short stories to her credit. She is passionate about finding courage through faith and grit. Susan lives with her husband of forty-nine years in Southern California. Add children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren to the mix and she has little time for her favorite hobbies of reading, watching classic movies, British crime dramas, and traveling.
More from Susan
Long ago, when I was a journalism student and then a newspaper reporter, the idea of running a small-town newspaper “out west” fascinated me and was part of my daydreams. Of course, there hadn’t been an “out west” for decades before I had such ideas.
When Celebrate Lit asked me to be part of the Suamalie Islands series and I needed to choose a business for my main character, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to run a small-town newspaper, at least in fiction.
Margo, the main character, works for her father, the owner and publisher. But he’s stuck in the 20th century, and our modern heroin dreams of bringing the paper into the 21st century, much to her father’s despair. It was fun to explore the push and pull between generations, between old-school methods and new technology.
Although Margo is the heroine who finds the courage to expose the corrupt politicians, she has one major flaw, a fear, that hinders a news reporter’s job. I don’t want to reveal any spoilers, so you’ll have to read A Heart for News to find out what her problem was.
Then there’s the male main character, Steve Grayson, a famous race car driver, who comes to the Suamalies to recover from a racing accident and to face his own fears. And to pursue his own dream of building a driving school and racetrack.
After a rocky beginning, Margo and Steve collaborate to meet those fears head on and to see if, together, they can realize their impossible dreams, and just maybe find love.
I hope readers are encouraged overcome their fears and to pursue their own so-called impossible dreams.
I love taking another vacation to the islands where peace and hope are found. Margo is a great character who strives to do everything in excellence when it comes to work on her family’s newspaper. I like the old time feel of the newspaper even though Margo would like to see it updated a bit. She can’t convince her father to step into the twenty-first century just yet.
Sometimes you have to leave everything behind and just take a break to breathe. Steve is still recovering from a wreck he had while on the racing circuit. He is well known in the racing circuit but right now the last thing he needs is to be around people especially reporters. Well let’s see if he gets to keep himself secluded.
On my how I loved learning more about the island and all its breathtaking beauty. With luscious plants and fruits, the island offers a place to be with God and bask in His Glory.
As Steve and Margo are placed together in a funny way they begin to open up to each other. Margo is not as confident as she needs to be but being around Steve is helping her. Steve has a dream that only God can help with.
The intrigue in the story puts Margo in danger as she uncovers secrets that could damage reputations. I loved the mysterious Mr. X and how he meets Margo in secret places to give her incriminating evidence against someone powerful.
I have to mention how excited I was when a favorite author was highlighted in the story. Wait till you find out who it is. What a great way to recognize an author who influences many.
Come join the excitement filled with intrigue mixed in and discover new relationships, dreams and faith that stands against those who try to discourage others.
I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.