Sunday, July 27, 2014

THE BUTTERFLY AND THE VIOLIN – Kindle Fire Giveaway & RSVP for 8/7 Facebook Party!

The Butterfly and the Violin
Welcome to the launch campaign for debut novelist Kristy Cambron's The Butterfly and the Violin. Romantic Times had this to say: "Alternating points of view skillfully blend contemporary and historical fiction in this debut novel that is almost impossible to put down. Well-researched yet heartbreaking. . . ."

Kristy is celebrating the release of the first book in her series, A Hidden Masterpiece, with a fun Kindle Fire giveaway and meeting her readers during an August 7th Facebook author chat party.


 One winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire
  • The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on August 7th. Winner will be announced at The Butterfly and the Violin Author Chat Party. Kristy will be connecting with readers and answering questions, sharing some of the fascinating research behind the book, hosting a fun book chat, and giving away some GREAT prizes. She will also be giving an exclusive look at the next book in the series, A Sparrow in Terezin!

So grab your copy of The Butterfly and the Violin and join Kristy on the evening of August 7th 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 todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 7th!

About the book: A mysterious painting breathes hope and beauty into the darkest corners of Auschwitz---and the loneliest hearts of Manhattan.
Manhattan art dealer Sera James watched her world crumble at the altar two years ago, and her heart is still fragile. Her desire for distraction reignites a passion for a mysterious portrait she first saw as a young girl---a painting of a young violinist with piercing blue eyes.
In her search for the painting, Sera crosses paths with William Hanover, the grandson of a wealthy California real estate mogul, who may be the key to uncovering the hidden masterpiece. Together, Sera and William slowly unravel the story behind the painting's subject: Austrian violinist Adele Von Bron.
A darling of the Austrian aristocracy, talented violinist, and daughter to a high-ranking member of the Third Reich, Adele risks everything when she begins smuggling Jews out of Vienna. In a heartbeat, her life of prosperity and privilege dissolves into a world of starvation and barbed wire.
As Sera untangles the secrets behind the painting, she finds beauty in the most unlikely of places: in the grim camps of Auschwitz and in the inner recesses of her own troubled heart.

Purchase a copy:

About the author: Kristy Cambron has been fascinated with the WWII era since hearing her grandfather's stories of the war. She holds an art history degree from Indiana University and received the Outstanding Art History Student Award. Kristy writes WWII and Regency era fiction and has placed first in the 2013 NTRWA Great Expectations and 2012 FCRW Beacon contests, and is a 2013 Laurie finalist. Kristy makes her home in Indiana with her husband and three football-loving sons.

Find Kristy online: website, Facebook, Twitter

My Review:
First of all I have to say, I LOVED this book!  Seriously, "The Butterfly and the Violin" is one of the top five books that I have read this year so far! Kristy Cambron is a talented writer and I am looking forward to reading many more books from her (I saw  book 2 in this series is to be released in April!). This book is really the telling of two stories, each story set in a different decade and each story about love, loss and hope. 
Sera has been intrigued by a painting since she was a little girl and this in recent years has turned into an obsession; however she is not the only one whom must find the original painting and its' owner.  William is trying to find this painting's owner and is trying to carry on his family name and protect his family.  To help each other out, Sera and William team up, but their hearts also become involved.  Throughout their story, the story of the woman whom is the subject of the painting is told as well.  Adele, society's darling and a very talented violinist, loses life as she knows it in a single night.  Adele must hold onto hope and a will to live in order to survive during World War II and yet she gives others hope and something to live for as well. 
Kristy does an amazing job with switching seamlessly back and forth between the two stories and she captured my attention from the very first chapter and I did not want to stop reading.  It is truly a wonderful book and one that will draw you completely into the lives of all of the characters and will have you experiencing all kinds of emotions with the characters throughout their journeys.  I highly recommend this book to historical romance fans!

To read other reviews included on this blog tour go here:

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

Friday, July 25, 2014

Book Review - "90 Minutes in Heaven"

Don Piper shares his story of dying and his time in heaven and his recovery in the book he co-writes with Cecil Murphey.  "90 Minutes in Heaven" grabbed my attention on the very first page and held it; right away I was thinking about how even such a seemingly thoughtless and little decision can be so life-changing. What is so intriguing about this book is that Heaven is described as such a beautiful place, a place that we all look forward to arriving in, but yet one that is filled with mystery and also honestly a little fear as death is such a sad time for those left on earth.  Being that Don was able to experience Heaven and return to his life on earth and share that experience just helps add to the wonderment and answer some questions and curiosity surrounding it.  This edition that I read is the 10th anniversary edition and it shares some of the responses and follow up to this book when it was originally published; I enjoyed reading this section as well, and almost as much as the actual book.  I highly recommend this book; it is one that you will not want to put down once you start reading it!

*Thanks to the Revell Reads program for the complimentary copy of the book in exchange for a honest review.*

Monday, July 21, 2014

Book Review - "Death Takes a Ride"

Cate is back in the midst of a mystery and a murder as well as an attempted murder in "Death Takes a Ride," book 3 in Lorena McCourtney's Cate Kinkaid Files series.  Cate just happens to be at H&B trying to help out a friend of her aunt's when she hears gunshots and then sees one man lying on the floor dead and another man unconscious with $30,000 spilling out of his jacket and another man holding a gun.  As Cate becomes involved with this case, she tries to find the answers and also determine connections among people and whom to trust. 
I really enjoyed this addition to the series!  Finally, Cate is seeing progress take place in both her professional and personal life.  There were times throughout the book I felt like yelling at Mitch and Cate as I was hoping they would figure out what made logical sense for both of them and I have to say I was happy with the ending of the book and I am looking forward to reading more in this series!

*Thanks to Revell Reads for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Book Review - "Bridge To Haven"

"Bridge To Haven," a novel written by Francine Rivers, is one that draws the reader in and holds you there for a long time after you are done reading. 
Lena was born and deserted by her mother under a bridge where she was found by the town pastor.  All of her life she had spent sheltered in Haven and just wanted an escape.  Moving to Hollywood seemed the answer; however things are not always what we believe them to be. 
Francine has done a wonderful job with this book.  It is a very touching story of grace, love, temptation and moving on from mistakes.  I found this book to be one that really brought the characters to life and really allowed the reader to become a part of the characters' lives.  Lena's life has been a mystery, a disappointment and constantly wanting more, wanting something different. I felt as if I was on this journey with Lena every step of the way and I highly recommend this book.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Book Review - Gardeners' Bible

Book Description

God will meet you personally in your garden... and in his. Throughout the Scriptures God has revealed spiritual truth in the language of growing things. This Bible will take you into a deeper relationship with God through the contemplation of soil and soul. The NIV God’s Word for Gardeners Bible will inspire you to seek God in a personal way through informative essays, devotional readings and prayers that explore the nature of the gardener’s work, the rewards of gardening, the influence of seasons and weather, and the joy of the harvest. In this Bible you will also find botanical-themed pages containing horticultural information for the prominent plants noted in Scripture and landscape-themed pages highlighting the main gardens and regions in which the events in the Bible took place. Draw near to the One whose garden is planted with delight---in you!
Features: * 260 daily devotions and 52 weekend readings arranged in weekly themes and placed near relevant passages in the text to explore the biblical metaphors of gardens and gardening * Beautiful, durable hardcover * Topical Index (for 52 weeks) * Special sections on the Garden of Eden, the garden of Gethsemane and Jesus the Vine.

My Review:
First of all, I love the cover!  I do not like to judge a book by it's cover, but this one just really drew me to it!  This Bible really will give the reader a different perspective on passages and God as well as the focus is on gardening and cultivating plants.  I really enjoyed this Bible and love the set up of it as it is very user-friendly and this is a beautiful edition that will be treasured and thumbed through often. 

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

Book Review - "Love Comes Home"

"Love Comes Home," book 3 in Ann H. Gabhart's Rosey Corner series, continues on in the lives of the Merritt sisters.  World War II is over and everyone is overjoyed that the boys are returning home and there is much celebrating.  Although the war is over, it does not mean that the pain and suffering is over all they all quickly learn.  This story takes the reader into the lives of soldiers dealing with PTSD and other effects of fighting in war, as well as those back home anxiously awaiting news.  This is a sweet love story between the various couples in the book as some are rediscovering their love after being separated, some are given a second chance and others are experiencing love for the first time.  I highly recommend this book to everyone whom has read others in this series, and this is one that you will not want to miss. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

complete guide to eateries across the US!

"Roadfood: The Coast-to-coast guide to 900 of the best barbeque joints, lobster shacks, ice cream parlors, highway diners, and much, much more" makes me want to head out on a cross country road trip and visit many of these places!
Jane & Michael Stern have done an excellent job with this book and compiling all the information that is included in it.  First of all, the book is divided into region making it very user-friendly.  Each eatery place is described and I love the tidbits of information that are included in regards to the history of the place, the atmosphere and really just what makes the place unique.  Types of food are described including recommendations of what to try and also the price range of menu ideas.  Phone numbers and addresses are included as well making this is a guide that you will want to keep handy in the car while traveling! 
I have really enjoyed paging through this book and reading about all of the various places to eat throughout the United States and this is the perfect gift for anyone who loves to travel or whom is planning a road trip!

For more information on this book, go here!

***"I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review."

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Book Review - "Veil of Secrets"

"Veil of Secrets," a novel written by Shannon Etheridge and Kathryn Mackel, is an intriguing story that really pulls the reader into the midst of politics and also into the midst of relationships.  For all appearances sake, Melanie and Will are the perfect couple, but that is as far as it goes - appearances.  Melanie is struggling with her past and that is keeping her from the relationship that she desires and needs with her husband and is a barrier to him.  Will either wants to improve the marriage or end it with divorce.  Melanie sees her daughter going down the same path she took and wants to help her not to make the same mistakes.  This book is a read that will have you experiencing a whole array of emotions and really give you a different perspective into campaigns and yet also push you to do a soul searching yourself.  This is not necessarily a typical light summery read, but it is a good change of pace.

Book Description from the publisher:

Can a mother face the secrets of her past in order to protect her daughter from the same mistakes?

Melanie and Will Connors seem like the perfect couple, but their marriage only looks good on the outside, having withered inside from a lack of intimacy.

The barriers Melanie faces to intimacy are hidden in her past—a misguided tryst with a trusted friend of her father's, a pattern of promiscuity as a teen, empty relationships in early adulthood. The only way Melanie sees to save herself from herself is to turn off her desires—even in her marriage.

Will insists they either work on the marriage—or work on the divorce. Their attempt at restoration occurs in the midst of a New Hampshire presidential primary that is rocked by violent protests and razor-sharp character assassinations. For the first time, their marriage begins to feel like a safe place.

As Melanie tries to sort through her own past, she sees her 16-year-old daughter's head turned by a charismatic older man on Will's campaign team. Can Melanie sift through her own rubble and find the voice to help guide her daughter—and possibly find the joy that God intended for her marriage?

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

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Book Review - "The Revealing"

"The Revealing," book 3 of Suzanne Woods Fisher's The Inn at Eagle Hill series, is a great addition to the series and I loved spending time again with these characters. 
Naomi has a secret and she has been hiding this and carrying guilt around.  When a new guest arrives, things begin to turn upside down.  As this book concludes the series, the secrets are revealed, the loose ends for the characters are tied up and questions from the previous two novels are answered.  Suzanne's stories are always filled with wonderful characters and storylines that pull the reader right into the characters' lives.  I have enjoyed time with all of these characters and am sad to have their stories end.  I highly recommend this book to Amish fiction fans, but also recommend that this series be read in order and this book not be treated as a stand-alone novel. 

*Thanks to the Revell Reads program for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

Book Review - "Atlas Girl"

"Atlas Girl: finding home in the last place I thought to look," a memoir written by Emily T. Wierenga, is a heart-filled and thoughtful story of how Emily got to where she is now. 
Each of us has a story to tell and our experiences throughout our lives mold us into who we are now. Emily has a great storytelling ability which instantly pulls the reader into the book and into her life.  I love the format of the book as well as she includes quotes which help "set the scene."  Emily's journey is heartwarming and raw. Be prepared for your life to be changed along with Emily and to do some soul-searching yourself. 

*Thanks to Revell Reads for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.* 

Book Review - "When I Fall in Love"

I love Susan May Warren's Christiansen family series and I wish this was a family that lived in my town and I could interact with and be friends with.  "When I Fall in Love" focuses on the middle daughter of the family, Grace.  Grace believes she is content to live in Deep Haven for the rest of her life and cook and serve others.  When Grace is given the trip of a lifetime, traveling to Hawaii for a cooking course, she gets a whole lot more than she bargained for.  Her sister Eden is engaged to hockey star Jace and Jace's teammate Max is going on this same trip.  Max looks forward to these three weeks each year when he is off from hockey and he is able to escape and do what he enjoys, cooking.  However, Max is also struggling with what his future holds for him and he has been content with being alone until he meets Grace. 
Although this book focuses on Grace, the rest of the family is also a part of the story and the reader is able to be caught up on their lives as well.  Darek and Ivy are married in the start of the book, Eden is planning her wedding to Jace and Owen and Casper are both struggling with trying to find their niche.  I love how Susan draws all members of the family into the story as well as characters whom were introduced in her Deep Haven series.  I am looking forward to the next book in this series and spending more time with this family. 

*Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

Friday, July 4, 2014

Book Review - "Stuck Together"

I have loved Mary Connealy's Trouble in Texas series and I was so looking forward to "Stuck Together," book 3, but I am now sad to have this series end!   I loved getting back to Broken Wheel and spending time with Dare, Glynna, Vince, Jonas and all the others whom have made this town their home. Vince's family arrives unexpectedly in town and he is in for more than one surprise.  Tina is trying to reform this town and finds that she may be going about it in the wrong way.  As these two are struggling and trying to find their place, they are also struggling with feelings that are arising between them. 
I loved this story as it shared the love that grows between Vince and Tina, but also continues the story for Jonas and the others.  Mary has done a great job with this series as the storylines and characters have been so fun and I felt like the characters all came alive and I loved their adventures and the bond that is so strong between everyone.  I am looking forward to the next series that Mary is writing!

*Thanks to Bethany House Publishers for the complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

FOUR WEDDINGS AND A KISS – iPad Mini Giveaway & RSVP for rip-roarin’ Facebook Party!

Four Weddings and a Kiss Margaret Brownly Robin Lee Hatcher Mary Connealy Debra Clopton
Four best-­selling romance novelists bring tales of feisty heroines, stubborn heroes, and unlikely love in the Wild West in Four Weddings and a Kiss. Don't miss the latest from the Western Brides Collection from Margaret Brownley, Robin Lee Hatcher, Mary Connealy, and Debra Clopton.

The authors are celebrating with a "Sweet on Love" iPad Mini Giveaway and rip-roarin' Facebook party.
  One winner will receive:
  • An iPad Mini
  • A Bride for All Seasons and Four Weddings and a Kiss 
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on July 8th. Winner will be announced at the Four Weddings and a Kiss Facebook Author Chat Party. Connect with Western Brides Collection authors Margaret Brownley, Robin Lee Hatcher, Mary Connealy, and Debra Clopton for an evening of fun book chat, western-themed trivia, and prizes. The authors will also be answering audience questions and giving an exclusive look at the next book in the collection!

So grab your copy of Four Weddings and a Kiss and join the authors on the evening of July 8th 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 todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 8th!

About the book: 

Spitfire Sweetheart by Mary Connealy

Maizy Place is an unruly tomboy. When she causes an accident, injuring neighbor Rylan Carstens, she becomes his unlikely caregiver. Rylan has never noticed how pretty his infuriating neighbor is, and he never expected to fall in love.

Love Letter to the Editor by Robin Lee Hatcher

Molly Everton is the outspoken daughter of the town newspaper's owner. When her father brings in an outsider to be editor, she tries to drive him out of town. But Jack Ludgrove is not intimidated. He's resolved to change Molly's mind about him---as an editor and as a man.

A Cowboy for Katie by Debra Clopton

Katie Pearl is uninterested in men and love. But she needs help on her ranch and hires Treb Rayburn, a wandering cowboy looking to make a buck. Will Treb change Katie's mind?

Courting Trouble by Margaret Brownley

Grace Davenport is either the unluckiest woman alive---or a killer. When her third husband is found dead, Grace is arrested. Attorney Brock Daniels isn't interested in the case---until he meets Grace. Only a miracle will prove her innocence, but the joining of two lonely hearts may be their saving grace.

Purchase a copy:

About the authors: 

Margaret Brownley is a NEW YORK TIMES best-selling author and has penned more than thirty novels. Her books have won numerous awards and has written for a TV soap opera. @margaretbrownley 

Robin Lee Hatcher is a Christy and RITA award-winning author. She is the author of over seventy novels and her work often appear on bestseller lists. @robinleehatcher 

Mary Connealy is an award-winning author of romantic comedy with cowboys. Mary and her Nebraska rancher husband have four grown daughters and two spectacular grandchildren. @MaryConnealy 

Debra Clopton is an award winning author of sweet, heartfelt, western romance that face life with a smile. With over 2 million books in print, Debra's first book-to-movie aired on ABC Family and starred LeAnn Rimes. @debraclopton

My Review:

I loved this collection of western novellas! I enjoy all of  these authors' works and these stories were fun to read as I liked the storylines and also the characters.  I have really been into Mary Connealy's most recent series and I just finished her "Stuck Together" and was sad to see this series end, so I was thrilled to have another chance to read some of her work and I enjoyed reading about Maizy and Rylan.  This was also a great start to this collection and I enjoyed all of the other three stories as well.  I highly recommend this quick, fun read that will transport you back to the wild and wonderful west!

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.*