Tag Archives: romance

Tethered Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Tethered

Author: Eleanor Bertin

Genre: Christian Contemporary

Release date: July, 2020

Perfectionistic librarian Jacqui Penn is ripped up by the roots when she’s dumped by her longtime boyfriend. She is drawn two thousand miles west across Canada to the last place she ever thought could offer stability—the old homestead where her father grew up.

Renovating the derelict house soon becomes a personal battle as it stubbornly resists her efforts. While Jacqui struggles to renew the home, she spends time with the family Pops bitterly resented. Her hunger for roots grows stronger as she fights to discover the long-buried reasons her father fled the house as a beleaguered teen. But will she ever find the belonging she craves?

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

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Eleanor Bertin loves books, people, and the sweeping skies of the Canadian Prairies where she was raised.

She studied Communications in college and returned to writing after raising and home-educating a family of seven children. The author of Lifelines, Unbound, Tethered, and the memoir, Pall of Silence about her late son, Paul, she lives in central Alberta with her husband and youngest son where, much like Jacqui, they are coaxing to life a century home.

More from Eleanor

Long before Jacqui came to be, I had the title Tethered, drawn from the first book in the Ties that Bind series, Lifelines. I was taken by the rope imagery that played so well into biblical themes of God drawing people to Himself. The second book, Unbound, deals with the way cables of guilt and fear can keep us in bondage to legalism.

But ropes have positive uses too. Tethered explores how ties of family and home provide the roots and grounding we all crave. Through each of the books, we see Anna, a widow of deep trust in God. She may seem insignificant, but her influence is powerful. Through her Jacqui, who’s been raised by Anna’s bitter brother, finds the foundation on which her family history is built, and makes it her own.

One of my favourite scenes in Tethered is where Anna teaches Jacqui to bake pie. It’s a piece lifted from my own life. My mother, now 94, was renowned for her pies, which she often gave to the bereaved or struggling. Like Anna, she generously taught her techniques and tips to the women of our family who carry on the tradition.

Here’s where Mom’s tips make all the difference. We don’t freeze whole pies. Instead, we freeze pie crusts already rolled out to size, layered between parchment paper, or better still, the plastic liners from cereal packaging cut to size. (Mom was “green” long before it was fashionable.) Making a batch of skins ahead of time saves space in the freezer compared to fully assembled pies, yields a fresher result when baked, and saves so much time. Whenever you want a pie, pull out a couple of the prepared crusts. While they quickly thaw, prepare your pie filling, assemble, and bake! Even our menfolk have been able to proudly say they baked a pie themselves.

Here is the recipe we use:

Pie Skins

5 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

In mixer, mix dry ingredients together. Then, a half cup at a time, cut in (with wire whips):

1 lb. lard (vegetable shortening will not give the desired flakiness)

Cut into flour mixture until crumbled to the size of peas. Do not overmix!

In a 2-cup measuring cup, beat:

2 eggs until frothy

Add: 2 Tablespoons vinegar

Add enough cold water to the liquid to make 1 cup. Then add to flour/lard mixture.

Using dough hooks, mix gently just until dough forms and will hold together. Again, do not overmix.

Divide dough into six or seven balls.

On each floured piece of cereal box plastic, roll out pastry from the center outward to just over 1/8-inch thickness. Keep flouring the rolling pin to prevent sticking.

Cut the crust to size of pie plate with ½ inch extra all around. Re-roll the scraps into the next ball of dough.

Freeze skins in a plastic pie keeper or even in a zippered plastic bag on a flat surface.

Bake pie on bottom rack of oven, 450F for 15 minutes, then 375F until golden brown (another 10-15 minutes). No pale, anemic pies for us!

Author Interview

When/how did you decide to become a writer?

My older sister praised a brief story I wrote when I was eight. She was impressed with the line, “Mother’s voice trailed away.” Rank plagiarism! However, throughout school, I did well in English and various teachers encouraged me to continue writing though I was set on other careers like pediatrician, real estate tycoon, and fashion designer. Ha! By high school graduation, reality struck, and I recognized my natural bent – which definitely was not medicine! I went on to study Communications in college.

After spending a year and a half as a reporter for a farm weekly newspaper, I settled into a long, rewarding vocation as a wife, and homeschooling mother of seven children. But the nest has a way of emptying, despite filling it so full.  At fifty, I wondered what to do with my newfound time and freedom. Out of the bucket list I compiled, “write a book” seemed the least expensive and most possible. My first novel took four years to write and another two to publish, but the best advice I ever received was to keep at it faithfully, even if only a few words a day, and walk through every door of opportunity that presents itself.

Which one of your characters speaks most to your heart? Why?

My first novel, Lifelines, centers on a character named Anna Fawcett, a 60-something widow with an adult son, Jesse, who has Down syndrome. Patterned after my own 94-year-old mom, she reappears in each of the Ties That Bind novels (Unbound, and Tethered). Like Mom, Anna is a selfless mentor, a devoted mother, sister, and friend, and a sort of Christ-figure in her sacrificial, faithful love of her Lord. When I grow up, I want to be just like her. My mother would laugh to know I’ve written a Christmas anthology short story in which she receives a marriage proposal and accepts.

And of course, her son Jesse is special to me, too. My youngest son, Timothy, 25, has Down syndrome and still lives with my husband and me. Only after I had written the trilogy did it occur to me that each of the novels features an individual with special needs: Jesse in Lifelines, Carol, a severely brain-injured woman in Unbound, and Lewis, a teenage boy with autism in Tethered. Having a disabled son myself has opened my eyes to a whole world of interesting and God-beloved people who deserve notice, both them and the caregivers who devote themselves to them.

Do you ever hide things in your stories for readers to find?

What an interesting question! I haven’t consciously hidden things in my stories, but a funny thing has happened with readers’ responses to my books. I’ve been asked for sequels about some of the most minor characters – even a dog! I suspect this is because in real life, I love people and in writing, I abhor flat characters. After all, even the hair stylist, caterer, or banker has an essential inner life uniquely their own. So, when I mention them in my books, I give enough quirky detail to reflect their value and humanity. Which backfires on me as a writer, because readers seem to want more of what I had no intention of giving. Sigh.

What are your hobbies?

If a hobby is something that’s enjoyable and costs, rather than earns us money, I could certainly say writing. But although I find it so satisfying, it’s also hard work at times. The things that most often distract me from writing are home décor (you’ll find references to it sprinkled throughout my books), flower gardening, and sewing (especially quilts). If the Lord gives me time, I also have a hankering to try oil painting, learning Greek, Hebrew, and Latin, and taking up the cello again. There should probably be something on this list pertaining to physical fitness, but you asked about hobbies, not personal tortures.

Do you have a favorite Bible verse, or is there a particular Bible story that really resonates with you?

I have always felt subpar in Christian circles because I could never pinpoint a favourite Bible verse or story. The reason must be that whatever book or passage I’m studying or memorizing at any given time is my favourite. Scripture is so rich and deep that it wows me no matter where I dig into it. So currently, my “favourite” is the book of Romans which is taking me forevah to memorize. I began in mid-April, 2021, and I’m still not quite half through, yet every day it speaks to my heart.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, September 21

deb’s Book Review, September 22

Inklings and notions, September 23

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 26

lakesidelivingsite, September 27

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 28

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 30

Guild Master, October 1 (Author Interview)

Rebecca Tews, October 1

For Him and My Family, October 2

For the Love of Literature, October 3 (Author Interview)

Holly’s Book Corner, October 3

Pause for Tales, October 4

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Eleanor is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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/21aad/tethered-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Heart of the Mountains Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: The Heart of the Mountains

Author: Pepper Basham

Genre: Christian Fiction / Romance

Release date: July 1, 2022

Can their hearts overcome the darkness of the mountains?

To escape a forced marriage, Cora Taylor travels from England to the Blue Ridge Mountains in search of her brother, who is working as a teacher in a mission school. She hopes to find a place where her nursing skills and independent ideas will be accepted and appreciated, but nothing prepares her for the wild mixture of isolation, community, brokenness, and hope within these mountains…or in the person of Jeb McAdams.

Returning from the devastation of World War 1 emotionally damaged, Jeb McAdams struggles against the rampant mountain alcoholism to soothe his nightmares. It’s easy to hide within the mountains, or it was, before Cora Taylor arrived. Now, she seems to show up at every turn, bringing her modern ideas, curiosity, and beautiful eyes with her.

Bound by their shared war history, the pair develop an unlikely friendship, which unexpectedly hints to something more. But when Cora’s desire to help the women of the mountains crosses an unspoken line, will Jeb be able to protect this feisty flatlander from the wrath of the mountain men or will he end up losing much more than his heart?

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

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Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance peppered with grace and humor with southern Appalachian flair. Both her historical and contemporary novels have garnered recognition in the Grace Awards, Inspys, and ACFW Carol Awards. Her historical romance, The Thorn Healer, was a finalist in the 2018 RT Awards. Her historical romance novels, My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge and The Red Ribbon, and her contemporary novels, the Mitchell’s Crossroads and Pleasant Gap series, showcase her Appalachian heritage, as well as her love for humor and family. She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC where she is the mom of five great kids, a speech-language pathologist to about fifty more, and a lover of chocolate, jazz, hats, and Jesus.

You can learn more about Pepper at her website http://www.pepperdbasham.com or connect with her on FB, IG, or Twitter.

More from Pepper

It’s so interesting how one idea can influence an entire series, or…how one person’s story can.

The idea for The Heart of the Mountains started in Laurel’s Dream with a hint of a family history story about a girl named Kizzie. (Someday, I hope to bring Kizzie’s story to the pages of a book). From there, the idea began to grow out of a love for my Appalachian culture into a series of books which highlighted (and fictionalized) stories from my family history.

The main story in The Heart of the Mountains is about Jeb and Cora, two different people with similar servant hearts, but the secondary story that touched me so much was the one based on my great grandfather’s life. I write about it in the Author’s Note at the end of the novel, so I won’t go into detail about it. However, what I loved getting to do is bring the truth of God’s redemption in my great grandfather’s life…to life again.

I never knew “Papa Rat”. I only knew the stories handed down to me by my granny and my mama, but in writing this story, I feel as though I had a tiny opportunity to “meet” him in these pages. He was a gruff mountain man with a broken past which led him to make a whole lot of broken choices, but his story is incredibly encouraging, because it points to the God of broken people. My great grandpa wasn’t left in his brokenness, but, after years of running away from God, he would later recount that God pursued him. The beauty of Sam McAdams’ journey in The Heart of the Mountains is only a little glimpse into what I imagine my great grandpa’s redemption story looked like.

Because my great grandpa was forever changed when Jesus saved him (as any of us should be).

I think that’s what my granny and her siblings (and even “Papa Rat” himself) would want most -that his story would point to Jesus. I hope that’s what you see when you read about Sam McAdams in The Heart of the Mountains.

Have you ever read a book based on family history? One of my favorites is Catherine Marshall’s Christy.

My Review

Pepper Basham is one of those rare authors whose work I pick up without question, knowing that it will end up being one of the best books I’ll read that year. What makes it more remarkable is that I mostly steer away from romance-driven novels, yet here I sit after finishing The Heart of the Mountains, thinking that if another author had attempted this story, I likely would have found it overdone, but as it is, I feel a sense of fulfillment. It occurred to me that while some of the circumstances in the story seemed almost too providential or too sweet at times, there is a reason that our hearts ultimately long for these outcomes, and a reason to include them in Christian fiction. Just as the stories of some characters will reflect the fallen, broken nature of humanity, some may also point to the love Christ has for each of us. After all, happily-ever-after IS real for born-again followers of Jesus!

With its 1919 Appalachian Blue Ridge Mountains setting, The Heart of the Mountains is primarily a romance, complete with the inherent challenges, dangers, and customs therein. Cora Taylor arrives in Maple Springs after fleeing her family’s upper-class home in England to avoid being forced into an unwanted marriage, following the earlier path of her brother, who teaches at a local mission school. In spite of her experience on the war front over the past year, she still finds herself overwhelmed by how primitive her new surroundings are, and determined to prove herself, she considers that “Surely, she couldn’t just entrust everything to God. She’d had to fight so hard to make her place in a world where people thought she was too young to manage the devastation of nursing in war and too ‘female’ to do anything but end up as the wife of a rich man.” Even today, the struggle lives on, whether it’s based on gender bias or any other form of preconception. It is so much easier to try to take matters into our own hands than it is to trust the One who is truly in control. However, as the longsuffering Caroline McAdams wisely tells Cora, “But prayin’ is where we admit we ain’t the lords of our own lives, nor of any lives, to be true. And, as I study on it, God uses prayin’ to change my heart into what He’s wantin’ it to be in sun or rain, ‘cause I’m trustin’ His love and His plan.” This profound statement speaks to the place where our will and God’s will come into alignment, which is when mountains are moved and miracles happen.

There are a myriad of life lessons contained within The Heart of the Mountains, all gently stemming from the truth of Scripture. As Cora observes and experiences more of the mountain life, she begins to realize the beauty and goodness amidst the hardship. Having less doesn’t necessarily mean that someone is worse off. Cora herself admits to local resident Jeb McAdams: “But I’ve felt more alive and more myself in the middle of the hardest days, than I ever felt in the easiest. There was purpose and this…this joy in making a difference, in offering even the smallest hope to those who were hurting or heartbroken. I don’t think I would have seen it before in my gilded world, but I do now. And I don’t wish to go back to what I was before.” Likewise, as is the case with life today, most of those in bad situations do not want to stay there and did not land there intentionally. Acting with kindness and love will always accomplish more, and as we live out the gospel, we will find more ways to share it with those who need it the most.

While a sequel to Laurel’s Dream, which offers more backstory on the secondary characters, The Heart of the Mountains can be read as a standalone. It is such an inspirational, uplifting story that will touch every reader regardless of background. On a personal note, I love that Basham included a dulcimer in one of the scenes; my mom, who passed away last year, played the mountain dulcimer, and it’s rare to find it in a novel. Speaking of loss, Cora’s statement to Jeb resonated with me as well: “We trust that God’s love for us and the people we’ve lost is even bigger than ours for them. And so, whatever He’s chosen for their lives is a much better plan than one we can imagine.” Our relationship with the Lord is based on trust and our eternal hope in Him, and as with her other novels, Pepper Basham perfectly exemplifies this with The Heart of the Mountains.

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

Bizwings Blog, July 28

Rachael’s Inkwell, July 28

Bigreadersite, July 28

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 29

Texas Book-aholic, July 29

Inklings and notions, July 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 30

Boondock Ramblings, July 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 31

Reading With Emily, July 31

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, July 31 (Author Interview)

lakesidelivingsite, August 1

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, August 1

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, August 1

Daysong Reflections, August 2

deb’s Book Review, August 2

Live. Love. Read., August 2

Betti Mace, August 3

Book Looks by Lisa, August 3

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 3

Remembrancy, August 4

For Him and My Family, August 4

Blossoms and Blessings, August 4

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, August 5

By the Book, August 5

Wishful Endings, August 5

For the Love of Literature, August 6

Books, Books and More Books, August 6

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, August 6

Connie’s History Classroom, August 7

SodbusterLiving, August 7

Splashes of Joy, August 7

Where Faith and Books Meet, August 8

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, August 8

Back Porch Reads, August 9

Through the Fire Blogs, August 9

Pause for Tales, August 9

Labor Not in Vain, August 10

Miriam Jacob, August 10

To Everything There Is A Season, August 10

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Pepper is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon e- gift card and a paperback copy of the book!!

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/20389/the-heart-of-the-mountains-celebration-tour-giveaway

Finding Harmony Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Finding Harmony

Authors: Alyssa Roat and Hope Bolinger

Genre: Sweet Contemporary Romance

Release date: July 5, 2022

Can two people-pleasing musicians win the grand prize, or will they be forced to give up music for good?

Newly hired worship leader Elijah Peterson can’t seem to catch a break with his church’s congregation. With conflicting demands from congregants, he struggles to find a way to make everyone happy, especially Don, a man who’s rumored to have driven out the last worship leader.

Music teacher Olivia “Liv” Wilson says yes to everything—piano lessons, church volunteering, extra shifts—all while struggling to help pay her dad’s medical bills. As jobs fall through, she’s hit with even worse news—with bills piling up, they could lose her childhood home.

When their meddling roommates force Elijah and Liv into a cooking class together, the two come up with a plan. They’ll enter an indie songwriting competition—with a cash prize that could be enough to save Liv’s house. And maybe if Elijah can win, his musical family and congregation will finally take him seriously.

But winning the competition might mean losing themselves in the process. Can they find a way to strike harmony between writing songs they love and songs the audience wants to hear?

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Authors

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Hope Bolinger and Alyssa Roat are the authors of nearly twenty books both independently and co-authored. They have worked in a wide variety of roles within the publishing industry as agents, editors, writers, journalists, and publicists. When not writing, Hope is a theater nerd who loves to hike, and Alyssa is a history nerd and game enthusiast. Both are proud cat moms. You can learn more about them on social media @hopekbolinger and @alyssawrote.

More from Alyssa

In college, Hope and I (Alyssa) didn’t know the word “no.” After all, our professors, advisors, and chapel speakers all told us, “Say yes to every opportunity. Volunteer for everything. If you don’t do it now, it will be too late. Your career will fail. You won’t please God. Etc. Etc.”

So we followed that advice, and we well-nigh burned ourselves out. Faced with a litany of health issues caused by overworking, we realized after college that maybe we had taken things too far. So we began to work on unlearning this mindset.

To this day, we have to call each other and ask, “Is it okay if I turn down this unpaid opportunity? If I don’t have time for this volunteer work? Will people be mad at me?”

We channeled a lot of this people-pleasing into Finding Harmony. As we recovered from overworking ourselves, our characters Elijah and Liv learned that they didn’t need to do everything. As we fell back in love with writing for the sake of the art, not for the A+, our characters discovered how to remain true to their music.

We hope you enjoy reading Finding Harmony as much as we enjoyed writing it—and we encourage you to follow God’s call on your life, regardless of expectations.

Author Interview

When/how did you decide to become a writer?

I started dictating stories to my parents long before I knew how to write. By kindergarten, I started filling notebooks with my scrawling, near-illegible writing. I don’t know when exactly I decided I wanted to be a writer, but I chose publishing as a career in late high school when I decided on Taylor University’s professional writing degree for college.

What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?

I have a full-time job in marketing, and I also manage a speculative fiction imprint, so writing gets squeezed in after work, during lunch breaks, on the weekends…there isn’t much of a schedule, just frantic typing whenever I can.

Which one of your characters speaks most to your heart? Why?

In Finding Harmony, I relate most to our female lead, Liv. Liv has a hard time saying no and tries to do everything for everyone, but she’s running on fumes. She just doesn’t want to let anyone down. As she and Elijah work to overcome their people-pleasing tendencies, I think Hope and I saw ourselves in the story, as we learn to have realistic expectations of ourselves and learn how to set boundaries in life.

Do you ever hide things in your stories for readers to find?

All the time! We like to plant little Easter egg references to our previous books in new books, whether mentioning characters in passing or making a joke for readers of previous titles to notice. Sometimes we unobtrusively stick our friends in as background characters and wait for the text message of, “Wait, is this character me??” And sometimes we mention the names of books we like within the book, for example the romances our librarian character enjoys.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Read a lot and write a lot! Nothing will prepare you better for writing than reading lots of books in your genre, especially books that have released within the last five years. And besides, it’s a lot of fun!

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 20

Spoken from the Heart, July 21 (Author Interview)

The Sacred Line, July 21

Texas Book-aholic, July 22

Inklings and notions, July 23

For Him and My Family, July 24

For the Love of Literature, July 25 (Author Interview)

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, July 25

deb’s Book Review, July 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 27

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 28

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 30

Splashes of Joy, July 31 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 1

Blogging With Carol, August 2

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Hope and Alyssa are giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and Picture Imperfect and Finding Harmony, in preferred format (paperback U.S. only)!!

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/1f7f6/finding-harmony-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Thrill of Facing the Impossible: A Book Review of Davis Bunn’s “Burden of Proof”

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Perhaps not overtly so, but Burden of Proof by Davis Bunn is an apropos book for 2020, right down to the title. This year I have read several works within the speculative fiction genre, and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed them because I am much more of a historical fiction devotee. In a sense, however, Davis Bunn’s novel also falls within the dual-timeline category, and it is a legal thriller too. Such a formidable combination of genres promises a high yield and begs the question of whether or not they all blend well and complement each other.

Speaking generally, Burden of Proof falls in the middle of the spectrum as far as my personal ratings are concerned. There are parts of the story that I enjoyed, but also loose ends and some questions that I would have liked to have seen answered. I also have concerns about the implication that Adrian’s life is worth more than Ethan’s, taken from the opening chapters of the story; a life-limiting disease resulting in a poor prognosis, combined with the fact that the individual has no living relatives, leads to a decision that could change the future and the past. I will refrain from elaborating so as to avoid spoilers, but this realization of human worth greatly discomfited me. Along with this, there is no mention of Christianity in the book; given that it is marketed as Christian, I believe that it should be held to that standard, and while the story is clean, the focus is given to weaving the present with the outspoken past rather than in spiritual growth.

Time travel forms the crucial event in this story. Despite being so over-done as a theme, Bunn gives it a unique twist here, fictionally broadening its potential use. This brings in the Butterfly Effect, as found in any time travel scenario, as well as the Grandfather Paradox and, as one of the characters explains, the theory of quantum entanglement. Due in part to all of the unknowns, the bonds of family and friends become especially important. As what was thought to be an isolated incident grows into a full-blown conspiracy theory, Ethan and his brother Adrian fund themselves caught up in “the thrill of facing the impossible” for what may be the last time.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

My rating: 3 stars ♥♥♥

Buy your copy HERE

A Longing Fulfilled is a Tree of Life: A Book Review of Amanda Cox’s “The Edge of Belonging”

If the story of my life could say one thing, I’d hope it would show the importance of venturing into the highways and the hedges to let invisible people know they’re seen and loved. To invite them in.

A breathtaking tour de force, Amanda Cox’s The Edge of Belonging tugs at the heartstrings and reminds readers that belonging goes beyond having a place to live to encompass the people who love us and, by so doing, help us to truly belong. Cox employs a split-time structure to tell Ivy and Harvey’s story, and what I love about this format is the short time lapse; the two main storylines take place in 1994 and the present day, creating a small generational gap that allows readers to follow the same characters from one period of time to another. For a debut novel, The Edge of Belonging hits the perfect notes, drawing all of the characters together in a symphony both heartwarming and bittersweet.

With this intricately nuanced cast of characters, Cox demonstrates her keen understanding of and insight into the human psyche. In the present: a broken 24-year-old young woman who does not know who she is anymore and wonders if she ever did. Twenty-four years prior: a homeless man with a sorrowful past who finally has solitude and routine until he finds a newborn baby. An older woman heartbroken from recent losses but with much love still to give. A couple aggrieved by their inability to have children. And the thread of hope and faith that binds them all together.

My favorite aspect of the characters is how they exemplify Jesus amidst their mistakes and brokenness and humanness. Pearl is a prime example of this, and she is my favorite character, despite my incorrect characterization of her when she is first introduced. As a result of this and of several scenarios in the narrative, I find The Edge of Belonging to be convicting. How often do we judge someone based on their behavior or appearance without making any effort to reach out to them or know them on a personal level? Pearl is one of the foremost characters who demonstrates openhearted compassion, which she sums up in a simple and beautiful way: “Nurturing is nurturing. It doesn’t take a blood relative. We’re all adopted into God’s family through Jesus. And I decided long ago that if it was good enough for God, it was good enough for me. So I set in my heart that I would love and mother anyone who crossed my path who needed that kind of love.

By far one of the best debut novels I’ve had the pleasure of reading, The Edge of Belonging gently speaks to many current issues, including PTSD, fostering and adoption, domestic violence, abuse, grief, and both platonic and romantic love. Most of all, it guides us toward the unconditional love of the One Who gave His life for us, and in Whose arms we will always find our place of belonging.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥

Buy your copy HERE

Brought to Book Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Brought to Book

Author: Barbara Cornthwaite

Genre: Christian cozy mystery

Release Date: June 24, 2020

There’s nothing in Emily Post about dealing with murder.

Katrina just wanted to spend time among the books at Frank’s Bookstore. Yes, that’s an unimaginative name for a store, but Frank’s an unimaginative guy–or he was.

Now he and his murder are the reason Katrina is spending her spare time with Wilkester detective, Todd Mason. Or, that’s what she tells herself.

Why would anyone want to kill Frank Delaney? Who would do it? And is Katrina herself even safe?

Mixing faith, literary humor, sweet romance, and a cozy mystery that will keep you guessing, Barbara Cornthwaite’s first Wilkester Mystery has everything you want for a cozy read.

Begin your investigation of Brought to Book today.

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

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Barbara Cornthwaite lives in the middle of Ireland with her husband and children. She taught college English before “retiring” to do something she loves far more; her days are now filled with homeschooling her six children, trying to keep the house tidy (a losing battle), and trying to stay warm in the damp Irish climate (also a losing battle). She is surrounded by medieval castles, picturesque flocks of sheep, and ancient stone monuments. These things are unappreciated by her children, who are more impressed by traffic jams, skyscrapers, and hot weather.

More from Barbara

Meeting of the Minds

A Wilkester Mysteries Introduction

Detective Todd Mason knew Katrina was the one the first time he met her. The woman had witnessed a murder—if not with her eyes, at least with her ears. She’d seen the man dying and called for help, afraid all the while that the killer would return for her. So much he’d been told before he went into the interrogation room.

“How’s she handling it?” he asked the officer who had arrived first at the scene and escorted her to the police station.

“Not too badly,” said Gary. “She’s in shock, of course, but she’s trying to hold it together. Katrina Peters. She’s in Room 2.”

He’d gone in then and gotten his first look at her. Late thirties or early forties. Brown hair that fell to her shoulders in loose waves. Brown eyes that were red-rimmed from crying. Hands clutching a tissue. She managed a faint smile when he walked in.

“Hello, Ms. Peters. I’m Detective Todd Mason. I need to ask you some questions, if that’s all right.”

“Miss,” she said, almost as a reflex.

“I beg your pardon?” Todd wasn’t sure he’d heard her correctly.

“It’s Miss Peters.” She said it firmly, repudiating the term Ms. even at such a stressful moment. Something made her blush then, and he saw her glance at his left hand. “Never mind,” she murmured.

She’s afraid I’ll think she’s trying to advertize her availability. It amused Todd to see the blush—if only she knew how refreshing it was to see a woman who would even be conscious of such a thing. Old fashioned, he thought. In a good way.

She answered his questions as calmly as she could, and even apologized for the tears that insisted on coming out now and then. When she alluded to Daniel in the lion’s den, he knew she really was out of the ordinary, and it took all his self-control not to offer to drive her home himself.

To join the investigation, read your copy of Brought to Book today.

My Review

In general, I don’t gravitate toward romances, and while I love a good mystery or suspense, cozies tend not to make my to-read list. So how did I end up requesting to review Barbara Cornthwaite’s Brought to Book? Through the recommendation of fellow readers who have highly praised this novel. There are so many interesting points that make this story memorable, and as such, it will appeal to a broader audience than it may have otherwise.

As book one in the Wilkester Mysteries series, Brought to Book introduces readers to Katrina Peters, an adjunct English professor at Wilkester College. Her faith in God has brought her to this current place in her journey through life, in more ways than one, and I felt an empathetic connection with her character. She is definitely multi-dimensional and dynamic, and I delighted in her triumphs and also sympathized with her losses. Battling a mid-life crisis of sorts, she wonders what God would have her do with the rest of her life, and the options that she considers are all godly and fruitful, but until true and complete surrender occurs, no decisions will be clear. Murder and other crimes increasingly affect her life and come closer to her as she finds herself running the gamut from suspect to witness to victim.

Cornthwaite’s skill at creating characters finds expression in Katrina’s self-doubt while wrestling with her ordeals and uncertainty: “How can anyone as ineffectual as I make an actual difference in anyone’s life?” This is a question that we all ask in some form or another at some point in our lives. However, the answer lies not in our ability but in the already-accomplished work of Christ on the cross and His ministry while on earth. As Todd tells Katrina, not taking chances or leaps of faith may be sins, “Especially if you think following the rules will keep bad things from happening to you.

Brought to Book offers many such spiritual truths and nuggets of wisdom, none of which feel forced, as well as multiple topics that are so common today, including the victories and the tears of foster care, serving as missionaries, marriage and divorce, second love, small town history and its secrets, and literature. This last one is my favorite because I have a great love for literature through the ages and of language in general, and I love how Cornthwaite implements so many literary techniques. I am now eager to read book two!

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

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 10

21st Century Keeper at Home, October 10

The Avid Reader, October 10

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 11

Remembrancy, October 11

For the Love of Literature, October 12

Worthy2Read, October 12

Genesis 5020, October 12

deb’s Book Review, October 13

Blogging With Carol, October 13

Robin’s Nest, October 13

Texas Book-aholic, October 14

Losing the Busyness, October 14

April Hayman, Author, October 14

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 15

Inklings and notions, October 16

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 16

Daysong Reflections, October 16

Older & Smarter?, October 17

For Him and My Family, October 17

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 18

Just Your Average reviews, October 18

Lis Loves Reading, October 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 19

As He Leads is Joy, October 19

Emily Yager, October 19

Sodbusterliving, October 20

Artistic Nobody, October 20 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Labor Not in Vain, October 20

She Lives To Read, October 21

Bizwings Blog, October 21

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 21

Godly Book Reviews, October 22

Mary Hake, October 22

Vicky Sluiter, October 22

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 23

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 23

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Barbara is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a paperback of the book!!

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/10210/brought-to-book-celebration-tour-giveaway

Forsaken Island Review and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Forsaken Island

Author: Sharon Hinck

Genre: Christian Romantic Epic Fantasy

Release Date: September 15, 2020

On an uncharted world, happiness is effortless and constant … but can true joy exist without sacrifice?

The people of Meriel have long believed their island world floats alone in the vast ocean universe, so they are astonished when another island drifts into view. With resources becoming scarce, Carya and Brantley quickly volunteer to search the new land for supplies.

After navigating a barrier of menacing trees, the pair encounter a culture of perpetually happy people who readily share their talents and their possessions. But all is not what it seems. At the core of the island is a horror that threatens everyone, including Brantley and Carya.

Freeing the villagers of the bondage they’ve chosen may cost Carya and Brantley more than they could have imagined. Even if the two succeed, they’ll have to find a way to return to Meriel quickly … or be cut off from their home forever.

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

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Award-winning author of The Sword of Lyric series, Sharon Hinck writes “stories for the hero in all of us” about women on extraordinary adventures of faith. Her novels are praised for their authentic characters, strong spiritual themes, and emotional resonance. For this series, she drew on her experience as a ballet teacher, dancer, and choreographer.

More from Sharon

Inspiration Behind Forsaken Island

In the first book of The Dancing Realms series, we learn about a floating island world guided by the work of dancers. The assumption of everyone on Meriel is that their island IS the world—the only existing place on a vast empty ocean.

But in this second book, currents have pushed a new island into view. Our intrepid dancer Carya, and her stenella-riding friend Brantley, set off to explore, hoping to find resources for their world of Meriel.

The story was influenced by some of my favorite classics in the adventure/exploration genre. Jack London (particularly The Sea Wolf), or Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe. Or anything by Jules Verne or Robert Louis Stevenson. As the characters explore a new world, we experience both wonder and danger with them. I love that sort of story, so I set my two beloved characters of on an adventure to see what they would discover.

But of course, the book is also about the developing relationship between Carya and Brantley, and the conflicts they confront. And once again, an undercurrent (no pun intended) of spiritual themes is at play. The island holds dark secrets, and time is running out for the opportunity to find their way home.

I love the verse from Psalm 94:14. “For the LORD will not reject his people; he will never forsake his inheritance.” Even on a “Forsaken Island” – the Maker of His people finds a way to reach out and bring hope.

My Review

Forgotten, forgetting, forsaking.

With characteristic prowess, Sharon Hinck brings readers another intriguing fantasy with Forsaken Island, book two of The Dancing Realms series. Carya and Brantley’s story continues where Hidden Current left off, a sighting of another island in the previously-considered uninhabited ocean sparking hope for finding supplies to replace Meriel’s dwindling reserves. The duo arrives to a seemingly-impenetrable wall of tree branches, and once they enter this strange new world, everything becomes increasingly off-kilter. Paradise becomes a nightmare as the island’s secrets are revealed and the truth behind the façade of the inhabitants’ happiness comes to light. All is not as it appears…

Faced with the threat of the island’s core and the possibility of never being able to navigate back to Meriel, Carya and Brantley work to liberate the islanders from the prison they’ve created for themselves. Their fight becomes a parallel to humanity’s ongoing battle against sinfulness, and Carya learns to trust the Maker more while contending against her own wounds. Including the internal battle of allowing herself to love someone after being indoctrinated for years regarding her life as one set apart from society. Forsaken Island may fall into the fantasy genre, but it contains many truths for the soul. Surrender to the One who made the heavens and the earth and who watches over and guards those who are His is the only way to true freedom and joy.

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

Through the Fire Blogs, September 30

Fiction Aficionado, September 30

Wothy2Read, October 1

Texas Book-aholic, October 2

deb’s Book Review, October 2

Inklings and notions, October 3

For Him and My Family, October 4

April Hayman, Author, October 4

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 5

Daughter of Increase, October 5

For the Love of Literature, October 6

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 7

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 8

Blogging With Carol, October 8

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9

Artistic Nobody, October 10 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Simple Harvest Reads, October 10 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 11

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, October 12

Emily Yager, October 12

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 13

Pause for Tales, October 13

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Sharon is giving away the grand prize package of a Forsaken Island book bag, a personalized and autographed hard cover copy of Hidden Current, book marks, and some decorative goodies on a plant-life theme!!

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/10195/forsaken-island-celebration-tour-giveaway

Six Years and a Quarter Way Through Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: Six Years and a Quarter Way Through

Author: Cassandre Brissot

Genre: Christian Romance, Coming of Age

Release Date: April 19, 2019

Six Years and a Quarter Way Through is a story about a young woman who’s lost her way. Like many of us, Leah believed that the vision supersedes the process until, at age twenty-six, she stops believing in the vision and the one who gave it to her. Leah has lost her faith, her job, her confidence, and maybe her mind. Utterly defeated and without hope that her dreams to become a star would come true, she meets Trenton Shaw, a rich, powerful, handsome, hot-shot producer who has spent the last six years of his life trying to find her. Leah is weary of Trenton initially, particularly since he is adamant about enlisting her for a new reality show that he is putting together called “Star Quality.” However, after reasoning that she has nothing left to lose, she consents. If she wins the show, she will receive a cash prize, an agent, and most importantly a part in a brand-new feature film; even if she loses, people would still know her name.

Trent and Leah quickly fall for each other, forming an intense and sometimes volatile relationship, which only gets more complicated after she moves into the house she’ll be sharing with her costars and meets Brice. Frightened awake from a nightmare, Leah stumbles into the living room, where she finds Brice looking as haunted as she feels; he confides in her about his dead fiancée, and she in him about her nightmares and anxiety attacks. Her nightmares recur, worsening with each night as the competition intensifies and her relationship with Trent deepens. Gradually it becomes apparent that Leah’s way of getting everything she’s ever wanted may have taken her on a road she should not have traveled.

At its core, this is a story about the journey we all must take: What do we believe? How strongly do we believe it? Will that belief be steadfast in the face of temptation? Although everyone’s story is different, you only either chose to do it God’s way or your own.

 

Click HERE to get your copy!

 

About the Author

 

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Cassandre Brissot is the author of debut novel, Six Years And A Quarter Way Through. She completed her bachelor of fine arts in Television and Radio production at the City University of New York Brooklyn College. She then went on to work as a TV production assistant until becoming a flight attendant in 2014, which is the same year she was crowned Miss Black New York USA. Nowadays, she can still be found on set but in front of the cameras, though mostly as an extra, thus far. When she’s not on a set, she’s writing for her blog. She also enjoys dance parties with her young nieces and karaoke, very much.

 

 

 

More from Cassandre

 

The best part of being young is the possibilities. In your minds eye you’re the next president, or celebrated surgeon, maybe a coveted fashion designer, you might even be Superman. As a child I dreamed fanciful dreams of stardom, celebrity, vast fortune, and a handsome prince to boot. I couldn’t wait to grow up so I could start living the fabulous life I knew would be mine. In spite of the hardships of my early years, I never doubted that my life would go according to plan, when it didn’t, it just about killed me.

I received my college diploma with a dangerous amount of pride. I was certain that after one of the best years of my life, which included interning at a prominent television network, success on the pageant circuit, and getting cast in and shooting a great pilot, that the world was my oyster. I had the talent, ambition, drive, and connections. Not to mention, I knew God. Why wouldn’t things work out for me?

Nearly two years passed before I was able to gain employment-as a sales associate, in a small boutique. No one would hire me let alone cast me in a project. The pilot I’d banked all my hopes on was never picked up. Each day that went by brought me to new lows. The successes of my friends and former classmates made the pain all the more acute. I was depressed, making terrible decisions in every area of my life, and loosing it. Thinking about my shattered hopes gave me an anxious feeling in the pit of my gut. Often that feeling turned into a full-blown anxiety attack. I was fledgling and inconsolable until The Holy Spirit spoke to me. What’s more important, He asked, the fame and the money or a relationship with Him?

It’s ironic, I called myself a Christian but I never consulted Christ about my life. I prayed for better but never did I ask God what His will was for me. I wanted what I wanted. I didn’t stop there. I wanted God to bless my endeavors regardless of whether it was His will for me or not because it was mine. Everything I’d done to that point answered the question loudly and clearly. I’d lived in yearning for things not Christ. It was heartbreaking coming to terms with that, however it was also the wake up call I needed. I finally understood I couldn’t serve two masters at the same time. I decided to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and the rest of the things would come in His divine time.

The Holy Spirit taught me a lot of things during that season of my life: who you are-your character-is more important to The Lord than where you’re trying to go. Sometimes God will allow you to falter for the sake of truly finding Him, and perhaps most prominently, that nothing matters more than a true relationship with Christ. Six Years And A Quarter Way Through, was born of those lessons and the desire to honor Christ as a witness to His redemptive power and love.

Leah Albanese is a young woman who chooses the things-including the boy who is offering them-over God, but she soon learns that even when you give up on God He doesn’t give up on you.

 

Author Interview

 

Do you ever hide things in your stories for readers to find?

I’ve never considered that I was ‘hiding’ things in my stories for readers to find, although that’s exactly what I’ve done. There are key moments in Six Years And A Quarter Way Through where I mirror a biblical scene or lesson. I’m always waiting for someone to point out the correlation. The perfect example of this is when Leah and Trent meet for the first time and he offers her a spot on his new reality show. Leah’s enticed through the three temptations of sin: lust of the eye, lust of the flesh, and the pride of life.  1 John 2:16 describes this principal and warns against it. I used Genesis chapter 3 verse 6 to frame Leah’s seduction. Eve ‘sees the tree is good for food, pleasant to the eyes, and desirable to make one wise.’ It is after that she sins and eats of the tree. Leah sees that Trent is attractive, has a physical desire for him, and comes into agreement with his plan to give her everything she wants. It’s after that she gets involved with him.

 

Do you prefer traditional books, ebooks, or audiobooks?

Most of the books I own are electronic. For four years I was a flight attendant basically living out of my suitcase, between my clothes and toiletries I had no space for books. I’m grateful for eBooks however there is nothing like curling up with a physical copy.

 

If you could meet one author, living or passed, who would it be?

Not to sound cliché, but if I could meet any author living or alive, I would want to meet Jane Austen. I love her work¾how she was able to create strong female characters that were equally feminine, witty, and moral. If I had the opportunity to speak to her it wouldn’t be out of a desire to enhance my writing it would be for the pleasure of getting to know the brilliant mind that weaved wonderful stories.

 

Do you have a favorite Bible verse, or is there a particular Bible story that really resonates with you?

I absolutely love the parable of the Prodigal Son. It convicted me when guilt and shame wanted me to stay where I was; it has shaped my understanding of Grace, The Gospel, and the love of The Father. I’ve been so affected by The Prodigal son that it has fashioned my story telling. One of the hidden things in my book I hope readers pick up on is that Leah is a prodigal daughter.

 

Which one of your characters speaks most to your heart? Why?

The character that speaks most to my heart is Leah because she’s loosely based on me. When the story begins Leah’s in a bad place spiritually, mentally, and emotionally; the despondency she feels I’ve felt. Many of Leah’s despairing emotions and their cause are a reflection of my own desolation during a particularly painful time in my life. By the end of the book we see the beginning of redemption and reconciliation. Bringing Leah to life brought back some bad memories but it also reminded me of God’s love for and patience with me. Leah is a witness to myself and other young women who may have made mistakes that in Christ there is forgiveness and newness of life.

 

Blog Stops

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 1

Rebecca Tews, August 2

Splashes of Joy, August 3 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, August 3

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 4

Inklings and notions, August 5

Simple Harvest Reads, August 6 (Author Interview)

Artistic Nobody, August 7 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Texas Book-aholic, August 8

A Baker’s Perspective, August 9 (Author Interview)

Ashley’s Bookshelf, August 10

For Him and My Family, August 11

For the Love of Literature, August 12 (Author Interview)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, August 13

Pause for Tales, August 14

 

Giveaway

 

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To celebrate her tour, Cassandre is giving away the grand prize package of a copy of Six Years And A Quarter Way Through, 1 journal (My Story His Way: Journaling your journey to a closer walk with Him), 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.

https://promosimple.com/ps/fe94/six-years-and-a-quarter-way-through-celebration-tour-giveaway

New Release! The Dark Shadows Book Review

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About the Book

The Dark Shadows

 

Book: The Dark Shadows

Author: Carol Alwood

Genre: Young adult romance with a supernatural twist

Release Date: July 26, 2020

First love can be dangerous.

Seventeen-year-old Violet Blackstone is in love, but everyone seems to think she’s making a cosmic mistake. “You don’t know him the way I do,” she tells her friends and family. But the moment she accepts a promise ring from Dakota, she must fight harder to protect her relationship.

Dakota’s ex-girlfriend returns to town, a coven member makes threats, and Owen Parker tries to prove Dakota isn’t what he seems. The closer Violet gets to Dakota, the more she sees his dark side and the terrifying Shadows she thought she’d never see again. Can she fight the forces seeking to destroy her relationship and life? Should she be with a Christian guy like Owen Parker instead? Violet leans on her faith to keep going, but the dangerous forces grow stronger every day.

 

Click HERE to get your copy!

 

 

About the Author

Carol Alwood

Author Carol Alwood grew up in the green haven of Bellingham, Washington, the setting of The Good Shadows series. Now living in Southern California, she misses the raindrops on maple leaves, so when she isn’t home for a visit she writes stories that take place in her hometown. Carol adores fiction and is the author of the novelette, Ghost of a Girl. She also wrote Focused Backstory: The Key to Writing Deep Character Journeys, a newly released writing-craft book. Connect with Carol on her website or on Facebook, and check out all of her books on Amazon.

 

My Review

It takes a talented author to pen a sequel that not only lives up to its predecessor’s potential, but even surpasses it. As impressed as I was with The Good Shadows, I have to say that this continuation of the story moved me even more, and I did not want to put it down until I had read the last page. The target audience may be young adults, but anyone from that age group onward will absolutely benefit from reading this series, particularly if they are being influenced by the New Age movement or know others who are. This is an excellent series to read and study with teens, and author Carol Alwood has provided a seven-week Bible study at the end of her story (as she does with The Good Shadows) that addresses the occult elements in the book, what the Bible says about them, and what God tells us our response should be according to His Word. I really love and appreciate this extra effort on her part because it can be difficult for people of all ages to understand why a certain practice or activity is wrong, particularly when it seems like the status quo.

As witchcraft and other occult practices become more widespread and normalized in contemporary society, books like The Good Shadows series shine the light of God’s truth on the darkness by exploring the inherent dangers that are always involved in dabbling with magick. Whereas book one introduces the characters and shows how no one is immune to the enemy’s attempts to influence us and turn us away from God, The Dark Shadows takes readers deeper, further demonstrating the consequences of inviting demonic influences into our lives. I appreciate that Alwood does not shy away from the fact that there are always negative consequences from meddling with the occult, and that she lists multiple Scripture references regarding this in the Bible study section. Given that the subject matter of this series could be considered controversial, Alwood makes her intentions and viewpoint clear in the foreword and again in the introduction to the Bible study.

The story itself has a dual first-person narration, told sometimes from Violet’s point of view and sometimes from Dakota’s. I found this very insightful in understanding both perspectives: that of someone who is a Christian and that of someone who has been raised as a Wiccan, because as a Christian myself, I admit to being largely in the dark about Wicca and related practices. While I certainly don’t advocate for Christians to spend time diving into the occult, as Alwood states, it is important not to pretend that it doesn’t exist, and to always be willing to be a witness for Christ without compromising our convictions. As Violet wisely observes regarding the darkness, “Just because it chose you doesn’t mean you have to choose it back. What if you were meant for something else?” Indeed, one of the main messages in The Dark Shadows is that “God is stronger,” and that is a fundamental truth no matter what we face, and a fact that we can hold on to even if we encounter dark shadows.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and was not required to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

My rating: 5 stars ♥♥♥♥♥

The Ring Does Not Fit Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book

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Book: The Ring Does Not Fit

Author: Sunshine Rodgers

Genre: Romance, Fiction, Christian, Fantasy

Release Date: November 19, 2019

Alena is stuck in a mundane marriage and longing for something
different. New clothes. Bigger bling. Flashy cars. Miraculously and
inexplicably, it all happens in a flash and she is finally married to
the man of her dreams, but something still seems to be missing. In all
her excitement, the one thing she’s looking for is the one thing she
can’t seem to keep.

 

Click HERE to get your copy!

 

About the Author

 

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Sunshine Rodgers is an International Best-Selling author, speaker and
motivator who excels in sharing the hope and light of the gospel in
her books. Her characters experience the love and grace of Jesus
Christ and the beauty of Heaven. Sunshine hopes her pages will get you
passionate about your faith. Her books have been made into audio books
and translated in different languages. Her social media sites and
personal blog reach thousands of readers a week. Sunshine has appeared
in magazines, newspapers and live media interviews and is working on
her merchandise line (available on her website!). Sunshine now enjoys
her days traveling for signings, author events, speaking engagements
and book tours.

 

More from Sunshine

 

Why are we never satisfied? I mean, we can have
houses, cars and money and still want more! If I were to break it
down, I would have to say…insecurity. Maybe we feel like we’re not good
enough. I don’t know about you, but I compare myself with others
all the time just by looking at social media and feeling like I don’t
measure up.
My book “The Ring Does Not Fit” concentrates on appreciating what is right in front of you, celebrating those who are still with you and staying humble.
Because the grass is not always greener on the other side and there
is always more going on behind the scenes that we don’t know about.
I wanted to explore the issue of contentment in my book.
The only way to really get over any personal frustration
and constant comparison is to have
an attitude of thanksgiving and praise where you are thankful
for what you have, no matter how little or big it is.
That’s the first step to loving life.”
– Sunshine Rodgers

Author Interview

 

Which author has most influenced your own writing?

I enjoy anything from C.S. Lewis and I  definitely incorporate  a lot
of his influence on my pages. In fact, my best selling book “After
You: A Demon is Always Lurking Nearby” is a modern-day twist on his
classic novel “The Screwtape Letters.”

My all time favorite author is John Eldredge because the passion for
his faith just jumps off the pages and that’s what I want for my
books…. where people are inspired by my message and in love with the
content.

 
Describe your book in five words.

Heaven intervenes in Alena’s marriage

 

What is your favorite book?

My favorite book is “Wild At Heart” by John Eldredge. I have read that book so many times; I have it memorized! I own the paperback copy and audio book version of his book. Though this book  is primarily written for men, I still answer the call to Eldredge’s challenge to open up to life’s adventures and to live a daring life.  This book has truly helped me to be the person I am today! And since Eldredge is my favorite author, I have read mostly all of his books, truly captivated with each page!

 

Do you prefer traditional books, ebooks, or audiobooks?

I prefer traditional books, hardcover or paperback.  I like to “dog-ear” the pages, highlight parts I enjoy, underline and write on the pages. I have three bookshelves in my home-library completely full of just books, books and more books! Some stacked on top of each other, others in a separate plastic case near the floor. And for birthdays and holidays,  my wish-list is always…you guessed it, more books! I can read 2-3 books at a time! I’ve never read an eBook and I only own one audio book.

 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

This is a three-part answer.

First, I would say…know your audience. I write in the Christian genre because I read in the Christian genre. I know what the audience in that genre expects. And I write with my audience in mind and promote my books with keywords associated with the target audience.

Second, Ask the personal question… “Why are you writing?” If it’s because you have a passion and a calling to share your craft, then you’ll make it! A writer faces intense scrutiny when it comes to critics, reviews, readers and publishing rejections.  Successful Authors need to be able to  stand on their message and constantly go back to the original  reasons why they started writing in the first place.

And third…knock down those walls. Throughout my writing career, I  faced a lot of dead-ends and I’ve had to come up with Plans E, F and G to further proceed with my vision. So be creative in pursuing publishers. Think outside the box when promoting your work. And know that there are options for you as a writer, you just have to be innovative when moving forward and soon, you too, will see your literary dreams coming true!

 

 

 

Blog Stops

Quiet quilter, July 8

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 9

Through the Fire Blogs, July 10 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, July 10

 Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 11

Texas Book-aholic, July 12

Blossoms and Blessings, July 13 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, July 14

Inklings and notions, July 15

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 16

For the Love of Literature, July 17 (Author Interview)

Andrea Carmen, July 17

Quiet Workings, July 18

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, July 19

Just Your Average reviews, July 20

Artistic Nobody, July 21 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Sunshine is giving away the grand prize of a $40 Visa card!!

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/fda3/the-ring-does-not-fit-celebration-tour-giveaway