Monthly Archives: August 2020

Love’s Mountain Quest Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

 

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Book: Love’s Mountain Quest

Author: Misty M Beller

Genre: Historical romance

Release Date: June 30, 2020

After losing her husband in the Rocky Mountain wilderness, young widow Joanna Watson is struggling to make a new home for her five-year-old son, Samuel, in the little mountain town of Settler’s Fort. When she returns home from work to find Samuel and the woman watching him missing–and the sheriff dead–she enlists a man she prays has enough experience in this rugged country to help.

Isaac Bowen wants nothing more than a quiet, invisible life in these mountains, far away from the bad decisions of his past. But he has a strong suspicion of who’s behind the kidnapping and murder, and if he’s right, he knows all too well the evil they’re chasing.

As they press on against the elements, Joanna fights to hold on to hope, while Isaac knows a reckoning is coming. They find encouragement in the tentative trust that grows between them, but whether it can withstand the danger and coming confrontation is far from certain in this wild, unpredictable land.

 

Click HERE to get your copy!

 

About the Author

 

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After working for 13 years in the corporate world, Misty M. Beller (mistymbeller.com) is now the author of fourteen independently published Christian historical romance novels. Raised on a farm in South Carolina, she combines her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life by writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters. She lives outside Charlotte, North Carolina, is an active member of ACFW, and teaches regularly at conferences and writing groups on effective book marketing.

 

 

More from Misty

The Story Behind the Story: Love’s Mountain Quest

Love’s Mountain Quest was one of the hardest books I’ve ever written, even though I LOVE Isaac and Joanna and their story. What made this book so hard was the fact that I wrote most of the story during my third trimester of pregnancy with our son!

Baby

Our little Matthew is our fourth baby (and first boy), so I was VERY heavy with child during the last three months I carried him, and that was the time that I’d scheduled to write Love’s Mountain Quest. Needless to say, the words were not flowing very well. My creativity was as exhausted as the rest of me! I could see Isaac and Joanna’s story in my mind, but showing it for readers using real words was the hard part.

Thankfully, I have an amazing editor at Bethany House (waving at Jen Veilleux!) who helped me massage the first draft, pushing both me and the story to be the very best we could be. Unfortunately for her, the edits for this book were the first bit of writing I did after taking a short maternity leave after the birth, so my brain was still a bit mushy from all the post-partum hormones and lack of sleep a newborn always brings. Jen’s patience through the process was remarkable, yet I so appreciate her determination not to stop until we had the very best book possible.

Our little Matthew just turned one, and Love’s Mountain Quest is finally making its way out into the world. Because of Jen, I’m so excited to share it with you! I can’t wait for you to meet the characters and story I love so much.

 

My Review

Book 2 in Misty Beller’s Hearts of Montana series, Love’s Mountain Quest can be read as a standalone, but for background into the lives of the main characters, I recommend reading Hope’s Highest Mountain first. Both contain the author’s trademark combination of adventure, faith, and romance, and this sequel is my favorite, not only of the two, but of the handful of Beller’s other books that I have read as well. Love’s Mountain Quest offers a bit of a twist on the theme of a mountain man rescuing a woman; in this case, widow Joanna Watson receives help from Isaac Bowen to find out what happened to her five-year-old son Samuel and her friend Laura, not realizing how Isaac’s past and future both figure into the situation.

As always, Beller delivers an exciting and emotional tale set in the beautiful but treacherous Montana territory. The scenic detail places readers right in the middle of the action, although the characters take precedence, with their complicated pasts shadowing their current circumstances. All of them feel genuine, from the seemingly heartless villains to the hapless victims, and the rawness of emotion tugs at your heartstrings. Isaac comes face to face with a past that he thought he left behind, one that still causes feelings of guilt and holds a lesson about pride. Joanna is so relatable, described as a woman who “did not shirk her responsibilities, no matter how exhausted and worried she was.” Yet part of her drive comes from fear: “She’d been praying, yes, but had she really been trusting that God would answer her prayers? Or were they merely an outlet for her anxiety?” This really causes me to pause, especially amidst the uncertainties of 2020. How often do I pray merely out of worry or fear, rather than with a grateful heart of trust and belief?

From the thorough description of nature and scenery to the interplay between characters, Love’s Mountain Quest is a novel that brings together romance, trauma, forgiveness, and sincere faith to demonstrate the power of a 1 Corinthians 13 love. After all, love truly is the greatest gift.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥

 

Blog Stops

Splashes of Joy, July 30

deb’s Book Review, July 30

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, July 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 31

Connect in Fiction, July 31

lakesidelivingsite, July 31

Emily Yager, August 1

Reviewingbooksplusmore, August 1

Simple Harvest Reads, August 1 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Inklings and notions, August 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 2

She Lives To Read, August 3

Genesis 5020, August 3

For Him and My Family, August 3

Texas Book-aholic, August 4

Read Review Rejoice, August 4

April Hayman, Author, August 4

Betti Mace, August 5

Blossoms and Blessings, August 5

Life of Literature, August 5

For the Love of Literature, August 6

Adventures of A Travelers Wife, August 6

Daysong Reflections, August 7

Labor Not in Vain, August 7

Jeanette’s Thoughts, August 7

Older & Smarter?, August 8

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 8

Mary Hake, August 8

Through the Fire Blogs, August 9

Pause for Tales, August 9

Just Your Average reviews, August 9

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, August 10

Blessed & Bookish, August 10

Hallie Reads, August 10

Wishful Endings, August 11

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, August 11

Lighthouse Academy, August 11 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Artistic Nobody, August 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Bizwings Blog, August 12

To Everything There Is A Season, August 12

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the grand prize package of Love’s Mountain Quest, Hope’s Highest Mountain, and a bath bomb!!

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/fe39/love-s-mountain-quest-celebration-tour-giveaway

Dust Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Title: Dust

Authors: Kara Swanson

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Release Date: July 21, 2020

The truth about Neverland is far more dangerous than a fairy tale Claire Kenton believes the world is too dark for magic to be real—since her twin brother was stolen away as a child. Now Claire’s desperate search points to London…and a boy who shouldn’t exist. Peter Pan is having a beastly time getting back to Neverland. Grounded in London and hunted by his own Lost Boys, Peter searches for the last hope of restoring his crumbling island: a lass with magic in her veins. The girl who fears her own destiny is on a collision course with the boy who never wanted to grow up. The truth behind this fairy tale is about to unravel everything Claire thought she knew about Peter Pan—and herself.

Click HERE to get your copy!

 

About the Author

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As the daughter of missionaries, Kara Swanson spent her childhood running barefoot through the lush jungles of Papua New Guinea. Able to relate with characters dropped into a unique new world, she quickly fell in love with the fantasy genre. The award-winning author of The Girl Who Could See, Kara is passionate about crafting stories of light shattering darkness, connecting with readers, and becoming best friends with a mermaid—though not necessarily in that order. Kara chats about coffee, fairy tales and bookish things online (@karaswansonauthor) and at karaswanson.com.

 

More from Kara

I wrote Dust not just for those who grew up loving the original Peter Pan story — but especially for the children who were left behind. Those of us who never escaped through a window to a magical world, whose childhoods oftentimes felt a little shadowed.

Dust follows Peter Pan when he is cast out of Neverland, grounded in London. For the first time, this Peter has to start thinking about someone other than himself—and become a beacon to remind any Lost ones that there is still magic to be found.

Dust also follows a young woman named Claire who can create pixie dust, but is desperately afraid of herself because when her fears and insecurities leak out, her dust starts to burn. Claire has seen too many shadows to believe in fairytales anymore and is doing everything she can just to lock away the strange dust dripping from her fingertips. But when she meets Peter, he challenges everything she thought she knew.

I wrote Claire for those of us who may feel too weighted to even remember what it feels like to have hope lift your soul. Who can look at ourselves and all we see are our own shadows and shortcomings.

Throughout the course of the novel, Peter has to teach Claire how to see the spark of light inside herself that is far brighter than the darkness. As he helps this girl learn how to fly, Peter rediscovers what it is that truly makes him Peter Pan: the unquenchable childlike belief that there are weightless thoughts in all of us that can lift us out of the shadows.

This story is a love letter to anyone who has ever needed that reminder. We have value simply because we exist. We do not have to be weighed down by our shadows. There is still light that can lift our hearts if we have faith, trust…and a dash of the impossible.

 

My Review

“A fairy tale has not only become a nightmare but invaded my real life. And there’s no waking up from reality.”

Faith, trust, and pixie dust become the three elements that turn Claire Kenton’s world upside down—again—in Kara Swanson’s evocative novel, Dust, book one of the Heirs of Neverland. Since her twin brother Connor disappeared six years ago, Claire has eked out a hardscrabble existence, never fitting in thanks to an inexplicable skin condition that causes her body to secrete a golden dust-like substance and never giving up on her determination to find out what happened to Connor. Her search leads her to a fairy tale, but this one has a sinister plot and an elusive, if not impossible, happily-ever-after.

A stunning Peter Pan adaptation, Dust is at once nostalgic and unsettling, with the ideal balance of hope and distress. It is dark, but there are just enough cracks in the characters’ armor to allow some light to shine in, and it is a clean read. While not overtly spiritual, the author has adeptly added subtle parallels to the Christian life throughout the story, particularly during the latter half. These serve to inspire readers amidst the struggles that we all share, and will especially resonate with a young adult audience. As Tiger Lily tells Claire, “You have value simply because you exist. Because you are here.” Shortly thereafter, Claire acknowledges that “Lily was right. Hope is a little like pixie dust—it shines brightest in the darkness and makes the soul soar.” The Christian undertones here and at various other places in the story are a balm to the spirit, in opposition to the corrupt forces attempting to destroy Neverland.

Using a dual first-person narrative, Swanson truly breathes life into her characters. The chapters are titled with either the name Claire or Peter, and that character tells the story from their point of view, ultimately resulting in unreliable narrators, which makes the novel even more intriguing. Both characters are sympathetic, although readers are unsure whom to believe because no one is exactly who they claim to be. Swanson nails Claire’s and Peter’s very different personalities and dialects, which is quite an accomplishment in and of itself, and perhaps best of all, she portrays the vulnerabilities of each of her characters and the reasons behind their choices and actions. Just as Jesus died on the cross for our sins and rose again, so should we live sacrificially and put others above ourselves. As Peter realizes, “[T]his caring for someone is not what I thought it would be. It’s not losing who I am. It’s finding my soul interwoven with another—and chasing the stars together. And that might just be the greatest adventure of them all.”

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥

 

Blog Stops

Andrea Christenson, July 31

Rebecca Tews, July 31

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 1

Texas Book-aholic, August 1

For the Love of Literature, August 2

deb’s Book Review, August 2

Emily Yager, August 2

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, August 3

Blessed & Bookish, August 3

Through the Fire Blogs, August 4

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, August 4

Worthy2Read, August 5

Losing the Busyness, August 5

Adventures of A Travelers Wife, August 5

Remembrancy, August 6

Wishful Endings, August 6

Inklings and notions, August 7

April Hayman, Author, August 7

For Him and My Family, August 8

Musings of A Sassy Bookish Mama, August 8

Inside the Wong Mind, August 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 9

Nancy E Wood, August 9

Tell Tale Book Reviews, August 10

Mia Reads, August 10

Simple Harvest Reads, August 11 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Faery Tales Are Real, August 11

Artistic Nobody, August 12

Ashley’s Bookshelf, August 12

Pause for Tales, August 12

Just the Write Escape, August 13

Blossoms and Blessings, August 13

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Kara is giving away the grand prize package of a Dust-themed bundle that includes a signed hardcover, bookmarks, character cards, Peter + Claire art print, and an exclusive Dust pin!!

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/fe3a/dust-celebration-tour