Thursday, April 24, 2014

"Meant to Be Mine" - one not to be missed!

"Meant to Be Mine," book 2 in Becky Wade's Porter Family series, is a must-read for any romantic Christian fiction fan! This is a fabulous book, one that I finished within two days because I could not put the book down, but at the same time I did not want to finish because it would mean the book was done. 
Ty and Celia have known each other for years as they went to school together, and then when they meet up again a few years later and after a few days wild romance they marry in a Vegas chapel.  However, after a change of heart in the morning, they have no contact for 5 years.  Celia cannot let go so easily though as nine months after their wedding night she gives birth to a baby girl.  Throughout these five years apart, Ty is very successful with pursuing his rodeo dream; yet Celia's dream is put on hold as she is caring for her daughter.  However, Ty cannot forget Celia and searches for her which completely turns his world upside down when he discovers that he has a daughter.  As Ty comes to terms with this, Celia must come to terms with her feelings and how her life is going to change, especially being taken care of when she is very independent and used to doing things herself.


I absolutely fell in love with this book and all of the characters (well except for Tawny!).  I loved the first book in the series and thought that would be hard to beat, but this one is just as good!  Ty and Celia were wonderful main characters, they were faced with challenged, they grew and developed as characters and were just wonderful to spend time with. I loved how the Porter family pitches in to help, and how accepting they are to Celia and Addie and Uncle Danny's antics.  Celia is forced to give up some control, face her fears and give her trust not only to an "imperfect" human, but to God as well.  I am looking forward to the third book in this series and cannot wait to revisit this family!  "Meant to Be Mine" is in the top 5 of my favorite books, highly recommend this, but also encourage you to read book 1 in the series first!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

"A Beauty So Rare," a wonderful Civil War Era story!


"A Beauty So Rare," book 2 in Tamera Alexander's Belmont Mansion series, is filled with romance and secrets and the pages are oozing with vivid descriptions that bring this time period and story to life!  Eleanor has never considered herself to be a beauty, a Southern Belle, but merely a strong individual whom loves her family, cares about others and tries to do what's right.  As Eleanor is forced to get care for her father, she accepts her aunt's offer to live with her at Belmont Mansion.  Aunt Adelicia Acklen's plan is to find the perfect match for Eleanor so that she is cared for and lives the comfortable life; however this is not Eleanor's dream, but it is one that she succumbs because she feels she must. When Eleanor arrives at Belmont, she meets Marcus.  Marcus works at Belmont Mansion as a gardener and has a love for working with plants and he is grafting plants and trying to make them stronger.  However, he has secrets that he is hiding as does Eleanor.  Eleanor loves to cook and bake, but that is looked down upon in society; why would Eleanor want to cook for others?! 








"Just thinking of it again tempted Eleanor to smile.  That was the point in the conversation when the knot in the pit of her stomach that had bound her almost since the first day she'd set foot on the Belmont Estate again, had slowly, but most certainly, begun to unfurl.  
And it felt...wonderful. 
Freeing didn't even come close to describing it.  It was a feeling she wanted to cling to- and she knew the recipe for doing just that.  Although she'd suspected her aunt was going to like that news even less than she had this."


Eleanor has felt "stuck," not living her life how she wants to (including wearing pink!) and this was a moment I loved in the book as I could feel the relief oozing through Eleanor as she is feeling free and life is finally turning in the direction that she wants it to be, the life that she wants to live.


I highly recommend this book for historical fiction fans!  Tamera has the romance in this for all of us whom enjoy that piece of our books, but she also addresses subjects that are not often written about, including dementia and botany. Also, I loved Eleanor's passion for cooking and baking as I love trying out new recipes and enjoy being in the kitchen as well.  This is a book that you do not want to miss out on!
 

Write Perspectives with author Tamera Alexander: Pinterest Scavenger Hunt

Tamera Alexander has some more fun for all of us in celebration of her new novel!  Check this out!:







Write Perspectives with author Tamera Alexander: Pinterest Scavenger Hunt: Join me for a Pinterest Scavenger Hunt and win 1 of 7 copies of A Beauty So Rare, the second standalone novel in the Belmont Mansion series!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Book Review - "Along Came You?


Book Description from the publisher:


Available for the first time as a fun and durable board book, the beautifully illustrated Along Came You is now perfectly suited for little hands and hearts. Ideal for Mother's Day, baby showers, birthdays, or any time a parent wants to express their love, this book's storyline highlights the positive ways in which parents' lives change when they have children. Author Karona Drummond, a certified elementary school teacher, employs storytelling techniques that will appeal to both the child and parent. The simple language and repetitive structure of the phrases make this a perfect read-along book that teachers, librarians, parents, and young readers will enjoy.


My Review:
"Along Came You" by Karona Drummond illustrated by Estelle Corke is one of my new favorite bedtime stories to read to my children.  This book is a sweet story of a mother explaining to her daughter how her life was before she had her and after.  "Along Came You" highlights the joy of having a child and expresses a mother's love toward her child. I love this book as it is well-written and also a sweet, beautiful story, it is a sturdy board book that is perfect for small children to hold onto and look through the pages and it is a must-read for parents and children alike.  I highly recommend this book and will be giving this as shower gifts in the future. 


*Thanks to the BookLook Bloggers Program for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Tracie Peterson celebrates 100 books with an iPad Mini Giveaway & A SENSIBLE ARRANGEMENT Live Webcast Event!


Tracie Peterson A Sensible Arrangement
Welcome to the campaign launch for Tracie Peterson's 100th book! A Sensible Arrangement launches Tracie's new Texas-based series, Lone Star Brides, that’s sure to please. As a special treat, devoted fans will be able to catch a glimpse of several popular characters from previous series.

Tracie is celebrating by giving away an iPad Mini and hosting a LIVE webcast event on 4/29.
sensible-400-click 
  One winner will receive:
  • An iPad Mini
  • A Sensible Arrangement by Tracie Peterson
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 29th. Winner will be announced at the A Sensible Arrangement Live Webcast Event on April 29th. Connect with Tracie for an evening of book chat, trivia, laughter, and more! Tracie will also be taking questions from the audience and giving away books, fun prizes, and gift certificates throughout the evening.

So grab your copy of A Sensible Arrangement and join Tracie and friends on the evening of April 29th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP today by signing up for a reminder. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 29th!


About the book: A Lone Star Brides book.
Marty Dandridge Olson is ready to leave behind the pain of the past.
Answering an advertisement for a "Lone Star bride," she leaves her Texas ranch and heads to Denver to marry a man she doesn't know.
Jake Wythe is the man waiting for her.
Burned by love, he marries now simply to satisfy the board of Morgan Bank, which believes a man of his standing in society should be wed. Together Jake and Marty agree they are done with romance and love and will make this nothing more than a marriage of convenience.
When missing money and a collapsing economy threaten his job, Jake's yearning to return to ranching grows ever stronger, much to Marty's dismay. But a fondness has grown between them, as well, further complicating matters.
What will happen when their relationship shifts in unexpected ways . . . and dreams and secrets collide?

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/vlp1S

About the Author: Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over eighty novels, both historical and contemporary. Her avid research resonates in her stories, as seen in her bestselling Heirs of Montana, and Alaskan Quest series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana. 

Learn more about Tracie at: www.traciepeterson.com








My Review:
"A Sensible Arrangement" is the perfect title for Tracie Peterson's latest (and her 100th!) novel, as that is something that both Jake and Marty are seeking.  Marty is seeking to move on with her life and not live with the memories that she has been for the past few years since her husband passed away. Jake is expected to be married and have a perfect wife on his arm at social events.  Marty responds to Jake's advertisement and this marriage seems to be the answer for both of them.  However, of course things do not go according to plan and the relationship changes in ways neither expected.
This is a great story and I am looking forward to the second one in the series!  The setting is well-described so that I felt as if I was truly a part of a story.  The historical details add so much to the story as well and I love books that bring history alive.  The main characters are flawed as each of us are and I felt that it made it easier to connect with them and really empathize with them throughout the story.  While I really liked both Jake and Marty, I also enjoyed the minor characters in the story as well, especially Alice and the role that she plays in Marty's life.  I recommend this book to historical fiction fans and am looking forward to reading the rest of this series!

To read other reviews included on this book blog tour, go here!

*Thanks to Litfuse Publicity Group for including me on this blog tour and for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

"Claiming Mariah" - a sweet story with secrets that have been hidden for years

Book Info
About the book: After her father's death, Mariah Malone sends a letter that will forever alter the lives of her family. When Slade Donovan, strong willed and eager for vengeance, shows up on her front porch, Mariah is not ready to hear his truths: her father's farm, the only home she's ever known, was bought with stolen gold. With Slade ready to collect his father's rightful claim and force Mariah and her family out on the streets, Mariah must turn to God for guidance. Though Mr. Frederick Cooper, a local landowner, promises to answer her financial woes if she agrees to be his bride, Mariah finds herself drawn instead to the angry young man demanding her home.

With the ranch now under Slade's careful eye, he unearths more than he ever imagined as a devious plot of thievery, betrayal, and murder threatens the well-being of the ranch, endangering those who hold it dear. As the days dwindle until the rest of the Donovan clan arrives at the Lazy M ranch, Mariah and Slade must rise above the resentment of their fathers and see their true feelings before greed changes their futures forever.

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/uPDB6

About the Author: Pam Hillman was born and raised on a dairy farm in Mississippi and spent her teenage years perched on the seat of a tractor raking hay. In those days, her daddy couldn't afford two cab tractors with air conditioning and a radio, so Pam drove the Allis Chalmers 110. Even when her daddy asked her if she wanted to bale hay, she told him she didn't mind raking. Raking hay doesn't take much thought so Pam spent her time working on her tan and making up stories in her head. Now, that's the kind of life every girl should dream of!

Learn more about Pam at: http://www.pamhillman.com




My Review:
"Claiming Mariah" is a sweet romance by Pam Hillman which is filled with secrets, suspense and love. Pam dives right into the story and action on the very first page with the two Donovan brothers showing up at Mariah's home to claim the ranch as theirs due to the past between their fathers.  Mariah has been living on her family's ranch with her grandmother and she cannot believe the truth; however Mariah is concerned of her father's reputation and carrying for her grandmother and sister.  As Slade Donovan comes involved in Mariah's life and in the ranch, secrets are uncovered and things may not be as these two individuals have perceived them to be.  As Mariah seeks God's guidance she can feel His leading, but she is not prepared for what all is to come. 
This is such a sweet story and one that is filled with action and loveable characters that I was immediately engrossed in and did not want to stop reading!  There are things that are uncovered and past issues that need to be dealt with and so much growth and changes for these two main characters that you cannot help but become completely involved in their lives.  I highly recommend this historical romance set on a ranch as it will draw you into the story and on a journey with these characters. 

To read other reviews included on this blog tour, go here!

*Thanks to Litfuse Publicity Group for including me on this blog tour and for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tracy L. Higley’s THE QUEEN’S HANDMAID Kindle HDX giveaway!


Win a Kindle HDX!
The Queen's Handmaid
Tracy L. Higley is celebrating the release of The Queen's Handmaid with a fun giveaway.

Retailers + Resources gave it this glowing review: "Rich in historic detail, Higley’s vivid writing brings to life the plots and intrigues that swirled through the ancient world as alliances were built and broken on the calculated schemes of power-mad monarchs." 
queen'shandmaid-400-click-1
  • A Kindle Fire HDX
  • The Queen's Handmaid by Tracy L. Higley
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 19th. Winner will be announced April 21st on Tracy's blog.

Don't miss a moment of the fun; enter today and be sure to stop by Tracy's blog on April 21st to see if you won.

Book Info
About the book: From the servant halls of Cleopatra's Egyptian palace to the courts of Herod the Great, Lydia will serve two queens to see prophecy fulfilled.
Alexandria, Egypt 39 BC
Orphaned at birth, Lydia was raised as a servant in Cleopatra's palace, working hard to please while keeping everyone at arm's length. She's been rejected and left with a broken heart too many times in her short life.
But then her dying mentor entrusts her with secret writings of the prophet Daniel and charges her to deliver this vital information to those watching for the promised King of Israel. Lydia must leave the nearest thing she's had to a family and flee to Jerusalem. Once in the Holy City, she attaches herself to the newly appointed king, Herod the Great, as handmaid to Queen Mariamme.
Trapped among the scheming women of Herod's political family---his sister, his wife, and their mothers---and forced to serve in the palace to protect her treasure, Lydia must deliver the scrolls before dark forces warring against the truth destroy all hope of the coming Messiah.

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/uKKQP

About the Author: Tracy L. Higley started her first novel at age eight and has been hooked on writing ever since. She has authored many novels, including Garden of Madness and So Shines the Night. Tracy is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Ancient History and has traveled through Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and Italy, researching her novels and falling into adventures. 

See Tracy's travel journals and more at: tracyhigley.com





My Review:
Wow Tracy L. Higley has done it again - "The Queen's Handmaid" is historical fiction at it's best! Transported back in time to the year of 39 BC in Egypt, we meet Lydia, an orphan whom is uprooted from the only home she has known and become intertwined in Herod's household, a mission and danger. This book is packed full of historical details and vivid images making the setting and the characters come alive in the pages.  Tracy has a way with bringing history to life and helping her readers to feel as if they are a part of the characters' lives and experiences.  This is an exciting novel that is filled with secrecy and twists and turns, along with complicated relationships as Lydia is trying to fulfill her mission.  Once you begin reading, you are not going to want to stop!  I love that Tracy has included family trees at the beginning of the novel as this helped me keep the characters straight as to their connections and relationships throughout the story.  I highly recommend this book to those whom enjoy historical fiction set in Biblical times!

To read other reviews included on this book blog tour go here!

*Thanks to Litfuse Publicity Group for including me on this blog tour and for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*