Monday, November 30, 2020

"Stories and Songs of Faith"

 

"Stories and Songs of Faith: My Journey with God" is a wonderful devotional book that I am eager to read again and work through it throughout the year of 2021.  I love how the book and readings are set up as the focus is around a verse.  Then there is a personal story shared by the author along with questions for the reader to reflect on.  Also, a song is tied in with each reading as well.  I love hymns and inspiration songs as they are a way to really help me to keep my focus on God and on having a grateful attitude.  Music can be such a powerful tool and I loved reading the various songs that were connected to each reading. 

I found this book overall to be very inspiring and a perfect way to start out my day or to read and focus on a verse in the middle of the day if I felt like I needed a boost at that time with mentally getting in a better mindset.  This would be perfect for anyone who really enjoys music and knows the powerful impact that the lyrics can have on you.


*Thanks to JustRead Publicity Tours for including me on this blog tour and for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Friday, November 20, 2020

"Softly Blows the Bugle"

 

Book blurb from the publisher:

Welcome back to the Amish community at Weaver's Creek, where the bonds of family and faith bind up the brokenhearted.

When Elizabeth Kaufman received the news of her husband's death at the Battle of Vicksburg in 1863, she felt only relief. She determined that she would never be at the mercy of any man again, even if it meant not having a family of her own. Then along came Aaron Zook . . .

Despite the severity of his injuries, Aaron has resolved to move west and leave the pain of the past behind him. He never imagined that the Amish way of life his grandfather had rejected long ago would be so enticing. That, and a certain widow he can't get out of his mind.

Yet, even in a simple community, life has a way of getting complicated. Aaron soon finds that while he may have left the battlefield behind, there is another fight he must win--the one for the heart of the woman he loves.

My Review:

This is a great continuation of the series and a story that I felt immediately drawn into.  I highly recommend that you read the first two books before reading this one as the characters, the area, the story all becomes so real and you want the whole story in order!  Elizabeth has a fresh start to life, by herself, on her own, not being controlled or tied to a man, a husband.  However, not every man is the same and Aaron is determined to prove that.  I loved the historical details throughout this book and this time period has always been a favorite of mine to read.  I wanted to keep reading to find out what would happen next, but at the same time didn't want the book to end.  

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Friday, November 13, 2020

"The Negativity Remedy"

 



I feel like Nicole has written something that we all need to read right now.  2020 has been an interesting and different year to say the least, a pandemic and a presidential election, heaped upon top of our normal daily lives, which turned into not being quite so normal.  All of that builds up and causes stress, anxiety, fear, which spews out of us in angry actions and words.  So enter in this book, "The Negativity Remedy: unlocking more joy, less stress, and better relationships through kindness," a book that is so needed at this time (at least in my life!).  Kindness, such a simple word, a pleasant word, but in practice it can be tough, tough to be this way, tough to interact with others with kindness when we ourselves are struggling.  

What I love about this book is that it is filled with so much!  There are personal stories shared, real-life experiences.  Then there is also scientific research mixed in, to add credibility and really show that this works.  Lastly, there are activities and things for the reader to do and really ponder and think about.  All of that mixed in together creates this great book that I have read and will be reading again or the parts I have marked in the times I am feeling less than kind.  

I highly recommend this book, it is a great read and very useful!

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Point of Danger

 
Book Blurb from the publisher:

Hate mail was one thing. This was quite another.

Radio talk show host Eve Reilly is used to backlash from her pot-stirring on-air commentary and interviews. But now it seems a disgruntled listener is resorting to more than angry words to express their displeasure. When a suspicious package arrives on her doorstep, Eve turns to law enforcement for help.

Police detective Brent Lange can't find any evidence to link the string of unsettling incidents that follows, but he's convinced they're connected. As the harassment grows more menacing, it becomes clear someone wants Eve's voice silenced--permanently. 

But unless he can track down her elusive foe, the gutsy woman who is willing to take risks for what she believes--and who is swiftly winning his heart--may not survive.

My Review:
I love all of Irene Hannon's books and this one is just as full of suspense and intrigue as so many of her other romantic suspense novels.  This is the first book in a new series and I am looking forward to what comes next in the series as there was a secondary storyline and and minor characters whom I hope are revisited in later novels.  Eve is used to people not always caring for what she has to talk about and share on her radio talk show.  However, it is elevated to the next level when she finds a package at her door and she calls for the police.  Brett is frustrated as he cannot find out why these things are happening to Eve, but yet he knows that someone is out to get her and get rid of her permanently.  This is intense, fast-paced action that will keep you turning the pages all the way from the start to the finish.  

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

"A Christmas Tale for Little Women" blog tour!

 


About the Book


Book: A Christmas Tale for Little Women

Author: Linda Brooks Davis

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Release Date: September 15, 2020

Broadview is attired for Christmas. Oklahoma heiress, Adelaide Fitzgerald, is hosting two young girls who have chosen to celebrate Christmas with Auntie Addie rather than their family in Colorado.

Adelaide must give these girls a Christmas like no other. Has she thought of everything? What would top off this holiday in an extraordinary way?

The answer lies just the other side of Rock Creek. But what will it take for her to realize it is the Christmas topper she’s been seeking?

It’s 1912, and Adelaide Fitzgerald’s view of Christmas is about to emerge as a tale for a lifetime.


My Review:

This book is such a sweet story that is sure to put you in the Christmas spirit!  I immediately felt like I was transported back in time to a simpler time period and the magic of Christmas.  Addie is trying to give the girls a Christmas to remember.  However, there are always things that manage to pop up and not be what we had planned on, but is exactly what we need.  The true spirit of the season is reminiscent to the classic Little Women, and this is a story that will become one too as it will be read year after year at Christmastime.  

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author


Linda Brooks Davis is a lifelong Texan who devoted 40 years to special education as a therapist, teacher, and administrator. She retired in 2008 and now writes full time.

Linda’s debut novel, Amazon best-selling The Calling of Ella McFarland, Book One in the Women of Rock Creek series, is set in 1905 Indian Territory prior to Oklahoma statehood. It won Jerry Jenkins Operation First Novel in 2014 and subsequently, ACFW’s Carol award for debut novel 2016. The sequel novella, A Christmas to Remember, is set in 1908 Oklahoma. A second novella, A Christmas Measure of Love, is set in 1910 and is the prequel to Linda’s second full-length novel, which is set in 1914, Amazon best-selling The Mending of Lillian Cathleen, Book Two. The third novella, A Christmas Tale for Little Women, releases in 2020 and is set in 1912. It is a prequel to Book 3 in The Women of Rock Creek series, The Awakening of Miss Adelaide, which is set in 1918.

Linda and her beloved husband Al worship and minister at Oak Hills Church in San Antonio and dote on six grandchildren. Readers may contact Linda through her website, www.lindabrooksdavis.com.

 

More from Linda


Everyone worked at my home on a South Texas farm near the U.S. border with Mexico.

 

My playmates were children of Hispanic laborers. Language never hindered playing la casa, making mud pies, or rocking los bebés. Frijoles and tamales served from stewpots over open fires tasted delicioso in either language. I learned outside their homes a broom works great on hardened soil.

 

Daddy paid workers on Saturdays, some by the hour, others by production. Lining up, they extended their hands, and he laid cash across their open palms. They checked the figures they had scribbled on paper scraps, trusting el patrón to correct discrepancies. Humble, grateful people, they showed respect.


 

My father verified immigration paperwork for those whom he housed. Others lived in the shadows, arriving around sunup and disappearing before sundown. Each evening a car or truck would rattle alongside the field, and the shadow worker would slip inside. Then the vehicle would clatter toward the horizon. And returned another day.

 


Occasionally, however, an alarm shouted in Spanish would sound across the field. Dropping his cotton sack, a worker would dash toward the cotton trailer in the turn row. Like hounds burrowing under a house, he and a compadre would leap over the trailer’s sides and dig a hole in the freshly picked cotton. The first crawled in, and the other covered him.

 

The immigration officer making his rounds would walk into the field and occasionally stomp around inside the trailer, searching for man-sized lumps. I never witnessed the discovery of a shadow worker, but I heard about them on other farms. Worst of all, I heard about tragedies. With very little oxygen between tightly packed fluffs of cotton, a man could suffocate and occasionally would. I wondered what would lead a man to take such chances and how my law-abiding, God-loving father justified his complicity. So, I asked, and he answered, “Desperation, sugar. All they want is work. A man wants to provide for his family wherever or however he can. I can’t turn them away.”

 

Sounded like work was a gift. Huh? my ten-year-old brain asked itself.

 

Years later, I understood this principle. The second chapter of Genesis shows us that God created man not to laze around all day, but to work.

 

The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. Genesis 2:15

 

Therefore, not only in “the beginning,” but on our farm in 1956, a man’s strength to work was God’s gift. The opportunity to work was Daddy’s gift to the men. The fruit of each man’s labor was the gift he sent home each week and the fulfillment of his need to provide for his family.

 

At Christmas we enjoyed preparing bushel baskets of meats, fruits and vegetables, candy and nuts, and toys for each family. I wondered about those who stayed around for a single day. Would their children find fruits, nuts, or even a piece of candy on Christmas morning?

 

Answers evaded me then—-as they do now—-but as a writer in my eighth decade of life, one truth I hold onto is that the strength for each day of writing and less pain in my arthritic hands and back are gifts from God. Each opportunity to write is an opportunity not only to entertain but to inspire readers to seek God in their everyday lives. Each word, unique turn of a phrase, or plot idea . . . is my gift to Him.

 

Protecting our safety is a far more complicated endeavor in 2020 than it was in 1956. Threats arise like none presented five decades ago, but work is still a gift. God wired it into our DNA. Come to think of it, the ideas for A Christmas Tale for Little Women and the subsequent novel—one set in the southern tip of Texas, a story about a loving, destitute man who wants only to provide for his family—are gifts.

 

Those diligent workers of 1956 and other years deserve a story that honors them. My gift to them and to Him is A Christmas Tale for Little Women.

 

Thank you, Lord.

 

Note: Photos from Pixabay

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 20

Blogging With Carol, October 20

Through the Lens of Scripture, October 21

Connect in Fiction, October 21

Get Cozy Book Nook, October 21

She Lives To Read, October 22

Artistic Nobody, October 22 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

For Him and My Family, October 23

deb’s Book Review, October 23

Splashes of Joy, October 23

Connie’s History Classroom, October 24

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 25

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 25

Mary Hake, October 25

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 26

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 26

KarenSueHadley, October 27

lakesidelivingsite, October 27

Pause for Tales, October 27

Older & Smarter?, October 28

Inklings and notions, October 28

Betti Mace, October 29

Captive Dreams Window, October 29

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 30

CarpeDiem, October 30

Texas Book-aholic, October 31

Batya’s Bits, October 31

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 1

Moments, November 1

Lighthouse Academy Blog, November 1 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Sara Jane Jacobs, November 2

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 2


Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Linda is giving away the grand prize package of all 6 eBooks in the The Women of Rock Creek Series!! (The Calling of Ella McFarland, A Christmas to Remember, A Christmas Measure of Love, The Mending of Lillian Cathleen, A Christmas Tale for Little Women, and The Awakening of Miss Adelaide)

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/10264/a-christmas-tale-for-little-women-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

"Finding Wings"

 


I became hooked on Deborah Raney's books, when I read her Chicory Lane novels, and I have loved her Chandler Sisters series as well!  "Finding Wings" is the last novel in the Chandler Sisters series and I was sad to see it end, but loved how it ended.  Also, there was a shoutout to a character from her Chicory Lane series and I am hoping that there may be more novels to come that will mention the Chandler girls and their families!

Britt is the youngest Chandler sister and feels like she has had to put her life on hold, has had to live her life revolving around her older sisters' lives.  Not that she doesn't love her sisters or do anything for them or that she doesn't love her role with their Airbnb adventure, but she feels like she may be missing out from doing something else.  Rafe met Britt years earlier when he responded to a frantic call made by her and it happens that he is the one to respond to her call now when her sister is struggling during her pregnancy.  Britt is completely drawn in by his voice and his ability to calmly do his job and help; however Rafe felt anything but calm as it reminded him of a night from his past.  As Britt and Rafe begin to talk and spend time together, it is a struggle to find the time with all of their responsibilities and also Rafe is not sure of what all he wants to tell of his family and his past.  

Britt, Jo and Phee all are wonderful characters and they were so relatable for me.  The three sisters are all so different from each other, but have their similarities and their sisterly bond is enviable.  I have enjoyed each of their stories as their true personalities shown through and also at the same time the others sisters' stories continued on in each book.  I was sad to see this series end and hope that there will be more stories that will have will have some scenes taking place on their property perhaps.  This is a story that will help you to realize that you are who you are and where you are for a reason and God is with us through all of the highs and lows.  


Friday, September 4, 2020

"Amaryllis Journey" blog tour!

 

About the Book


Book:  Amaryllis Journey
Author: Konnie Viner
Genre:  Christian Fiction/Romance
Release Date: July 23, 2020

You’re worthless, Shannon. This marriage is worthless. I deserve to be happy. We’re done!
Andrew’s cruel words have haunted Shannon for months . . . through the divorce, a move to a new town, a new job, new friends. And then she meets Max, who just might be the antidote she needs to recover completely. Until Andrew shows up again, ready to reconcile. And Shannon feels obligated to give him another chance.

As Andrew’s attention becomes more demanding and more deceptive, Shannon’s new friend, Rose, speaks truth and peace into her broken life. But Rose has her own secrets, and they’re about to catch up her.

When it all comes crashing down, can either of them trust God enough to let Him showcase the perfect imperfections of their lives?

My Review:
This book was a great read, full of beauty, hope, and yes also hurt, but also healing.  I started reading this saying I was just going to read the first chapter, and the next thing I knew I was halfway through the book.  Shannon is a main character whom you cannot help feeling a connection to, and someone who you want things to work out for in the end.  Shannon has had so many changes in her life and things seem to be on a smooth path, this new life; but then her past shows up.  Rose is such a wonderful friend to Shannon; we all need a Rose in our lives to speak the truth.  I love the imagery with the flowers and this beautiful shop and the beauty that God brings to our lives in the midst of the trials. 
Click here to get your copy!


About the Author



Konnie Viner writes with the goal of helping others find hope in the midst of brokenness and disappointment. She is also the author of Rested Soul, Resilient Heart (2017). Konnie holds a BS in Education from the University of Kansas and an MS in Business Management from the University of Redlands, CA. She is a former secondary education teacher and is currently self-employed.

 

More from Konnie

Amaryllis Journey is my second book, but first novel. It was written to bring to life one woman’s struggle to move out of the pain and insecurity of marital betrayal and divorce, into the light of God’s grace. Shannon Enright’s  new life is facilitated by a wise friend, Rose Daniels, who has been where she is and knows that what is broken is not useless and what is bare can bloom again.
Reeling from the pain and rejection of a nasty divorce, Shannon decides to start life over—in a new town, with a new job, new home, new friends. It isn’t easy, but things are finally starting to come together for her. Secrets from her marriage are still unfolding, but she grits her teeth and moves on. Looking for diversion, Shannon volunteers at a local florist shop and tearoom. There she finds more than she ever imagined.
Rose owns and operates the Amaryllis, a unique gift shop in Shannon’s new town. She repurposes broken household items, turning them into beautifully useful works of art. But Rose’s real purpose is to help others find beauty in the brokenness of life. She counsels young women like Shannon, showing them the quiet love of a faithful God and teaching them to trust His plan.
When Shannon’s ex returns, at first to sweet-talk and then to demand, it’s Rose’s counsel that keeps Shannon safe and sane. But Rose has been hiding her own dark and dangerous secrets, and her past is about to catch up with her.
When things come crashing down around them, will either woman find the strength to let God showcase the perfect imperfections of their lives?
——
I went through my own divorce ten years ago. I’ve experienced many of the same emotions and insecurities that Shannon does. I wrote her story so others can know that the disappointments and failures of your past don’t have to dictate what’s to come. When I chose to have Rose rescue cracked and broken pots and make them into something beautiful, it was with deliberate intent.
I love Rose’s passion for bringing beauty from the broken. Her repurposed containers carry the beauty of God’s creation (flowers) into the world. Our lives are like her art. We are vehicles for God’s grace. Our chips and cracks do not diminish His glory. They showcase His power and His redeeming love.
Publication of Amaryllis Journey was bittersweet for me because the character Rose was modeled after my mother who was my mentor. I did not tell Mom I was writing this book because “my” plan was to dedicate it to her. But God had other plans, and He called her home to Heaven suddenly before the book was completed. It is now dedicated to her memory.
Konnie

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 3

Moments, September 4

Inklings and notions, September 5

For Him and My Family, September 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 7

Texas Book-aholic, September 8

lakesidelivingsite, September 8

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 9

deb’s Book Review, September 9

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, September 10

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 11

Artistic Nobody, September 12 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 14

Splashes of Joy, September 15

Pause for Tales, September 16

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 16

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Konnie is giving away the grand prize package of a signed copy of the book and a $25 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.