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Garrett Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

Garrett is the second book from author Lizzy James Yorktown Christmas Time Travel series. This offering is a novella and was a bit confusing for me for a while because I had not read the first book in the series. Due to this I would recommend reading Book One, Max, first.


This is the story of modern day Garrett Tyler, who travels back in time to the year 1769. Needless to say, everything is different here – clothing, vocabulary, technology or the lack thereof, food, and even society. It is also the tale of Mercy Hansford. She is an independent, strong minded young woman from 1769. Unfortunately she has been molested and finds herself pregnant. Garrett wants to help and protect Mercy. 


Author James did a lovely job with this Christmas novella. Her descriptive pen took me back in time and helped me see the differences between modern day and then. I chuckled a few times during conversations. Our modern words are sometimes far from their original meanings. The story progressed at a nice pace. The author included some life lessons, but also humor.


This is a delightful fun time travel fantasy book that is a quick, light read. I would recommend it for lovers of time travel fiction or those interested in reading one. It is a sweet romance that will make you smile. It gets a 3 star rating from me. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: Garrett

Author: Izzy James

Genre: Christian Romance

Release date: November 27, 2020

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Garrett Tyler thought he was leaving Ballard House for home, secure in the knowledge that love had finally won-out for his long-time friend Olivia. He steps out the door and into the past, 1769 to be exact. While finding his bearings Garrett stumbles upon a beautiful woman being attacked. He makes sure she gets home and because of his kindness, she allows him to stay in an outbuilding—even believing his time travel story—while he figures out how he will get back to his life in the future. The more time they spend together, the deeper friendship they build, but one thing is going to rip her world apart.

Mercy Hansford is a confidant, independent woman running her own tailor shoppe. Her world is shaken when she is brutally attacked after delivering one of her sought-after shirts. The consequences of this night could be more far-reaching than either of them can guess.

Should Mercy trust a man she barely knows?

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

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Izzy James grew up in coastal Virginia. She lives there still with her fabulous husband in a house brimming with books.

More from Izzy

Why did I write Garrett?

While I was writing Max I was working through physical therapy prior to a lumbar fusion surgery. My physical therapist’s assistant was a young man named Garrett. He was intrigued that I was a writer and asked me if I would use his name in a book one day. So I had a name.

As I finished writing Max–who came forward in time from 1769–I started thinking about what it would be like for a young person of today to find himself back in 1769.

Garrett of the book bears no resemblance to Garrett of the physical therapy office! Garrett was fun to write. I hope you will enjoy reading it.

If you’d like to hear more about my books and be included in a monthly giveaway sign up for my newsletter.

Newsletter Link: https://vr2.verticalresponse.com/s/websitesignupform0708201983447pm

Every Christmas I send Christmas cards to each member of my Christmas Club. I pray for each reader as I sign and address the cards. If you’d like a Christmas Card from me please sign up before December 1. It does require your physical address. It will never be used for anything else.

Christmas Card Link: https://vr2.verticalresponse.com/s/websitesignupform0708201975614pm

Both email and physical addresses are held sacred. They will never ber sold or used for anything but what you signed up for.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 16

Britt Reads Fiction, November 16

Texas Book-aholic, November 17

Inklings and notions, November 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 18

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 19

By the Book, November 19

Simple Harvest Reads, November 20 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, November 20

deb’s Book Review, November 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 22

Kayem Reads, November 22

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 23

Connie’s History Classroom, November 24

Mary Hake, November 24

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 25

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 26

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, November 26

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 27

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 28

Pause for Tales, November 28

Connect in Fiction, November 29

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Izzy is giving away the grand prize of a $50 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/133b3/garrett-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Amish Outcast’s Holiday Return

The Amish Outcast’s Holiday Return by author Lacy Williams is a Christian contemporary Amish fiction. Reading this reminded me why I am intrigued with the Amish and their lifestyle of forgiving others. I loved this book.


This is the tale of Zach Miller. Through unfortunate circumstances in his life, he left the Amish and ended up in the care of his Uncle Paul. There he made some terrible choices which ended him in prison for a few years.


It is also the story of Grace Beiler and her family. They are a loving, strong Amish family but one member’s life was changed by Zach’s poor choices. As the story progresses we see forgiveness, redemption, grace, and mercy lived out as Zach comes home to his Amish roots.


Author Williams has written a captivating story. I was able to engage with the characters and became invested in them and the story immediately. The secondary characters are wonderful, too. I loved watching their relationships with each other and God grow throughout the story.


This is a well planned, well organized, and well written book. The author has included a few surprises to keep readers on their toes. I highly recommend this and rate it 5 out of 5 stars. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit, but these are my honest opinions.

About the Book

Book: The Amish Outcast’s Holiday Return

Author: Lacy Williams

Genre: Contemporary Christian romance / Amish romance

Release date: November 1, 2021

The Amish Outcast's Holiday Return COver

Torn between family loyalty

and her dreams for the future…

Grace Beiler’s shocked when Zach Miller arrives at her family’s farmhouse seeking forgiveness for his teenage mistake that cost her sister’s fiancé his life. But when her father gives Zach a job, Grace gets to know the man he’s become…and starts to want more than friendship. Can love bloom amid hidden secrets and family grief, and give them a fresh start at Christmas?

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

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Lacy Williams wishes her writing career was more like what you see on Hallmark movies: dreamy brainstorming from a French chateau or a few minutes at the computer in a million-dollar New York City penthouse. In reality, she’s up before the sun, putting words on the page before her kids wake up for the day. Those early-morning and late-night writing sessions add up, and Lacy has published fifty books in almost a decade, first with a big five publisher and then as an indie author. When she needs to refill the well, you can find Lacy birdwatching, gardening, biking with the kiddos, or walking the dog. Find tons of bonus scenes and reader extras by becoming a VIP reader at http://www.lacywilliams.net/vip .

More from Lacy

The Best Part of a Barn Raising

Have you ever had your community rally around you? Maybe some of your friends threw you a baby shower. Maybe your church helped with a meal train when you were ill for a time. Maybe you played sports and raised money together as a team.

Has your community ever built you a house?

I’ve written lots of historical books. I’ve written a barn-raising or two into my books. Until I started researching for THE AMISH OUTCAST’S HOLIDAY RETURN, I didn’t realize that community “raising” events still happened in 2021. They do!

In some Amish communities, builders will gather all the materials for the house or barn and on (usually) a Saturday, the entire community will gather to build the whole structure. There’s a really cool timelapse of a barn raising on YouTube that you can check out.

I’ve always loved writing about these events because of the community aspect. We need human connection and there’s something special about having your community surround you and show their love in a tangible way. Imagine walking into your home that your friends built for you. Every time you walked over the threshold you could remember the friend who built the door frame. When it storms, you could appreciate the roof over your head that many friends helped stretch the frame for. What an amazing feeling of belonging.

Of course, barn raisings and house raisings wouldn’t be complete without the food. Typically, the women and girls put together a giant potluck for the men and boys who are doing the physical work of building the structure. Brainstorming for this always makes me remember church potlucks when I was a child. Our church met at the local 4-H building. We would stretch out folding tables and chairs in long rows. And the food. Pasta salad. Fried chicken. Chocolate cake!

(I also remember roller skating in the back of the massive building with my friends, but that is a whole other story…).

Memories and friendships are forged at church potlucks and barn raisings. And when you are on the inside, it creates a lovely sense of belonging. But the hero in THE AMISH OUTCAST’S HOLIDAY RETURN, Zach, is not on the inside. He’s an outsider who has come home and is searching for a place to belong. The barn raising/potluck is the moment when heroine Grace sees a hint of vulnerability in Zach—because he wants to belong. It changes everything in their new acquaintanceship.

Want to know more about this book? Check out the “read inside” feature and try Chapter One on your favorite retailer.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 3

The Avid Reader, November 3

Texas Book-aholic, November 4

Maureen’s Musings, November 4

Lighthouse Academy Blog , November 5 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Inklings and notions, November 5

lakesidelivingsite, November 6

Bigreadersite, November 6

For Him and My Family, November 7

Mary Hake, November 7

deb’s Book Review, November 8

SusanLovesBooks, November 8

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 9

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 9

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 10

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

She Lives To Read, November 11

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 12

Labor Not in Vain, November 12

Older & Smarter?, November 13

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 13

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 14

Splashes of Joy, November 14

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 15

Pause for Tales, November 15

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 16

Vicky Sluiter, November 16

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Lacy is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card & 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/12f81/the-amish-outcast-s-holiday-return-celebration-tour-giveaway

Speak Now Book Review and Giveaway

Speak Now by author Chautona Havig is a contemporary Christian romance. Her books are usually a favorite of mine and easy to review, but Speak Now has me speechless. I am not certain what to say or even think about this book.

This is the story of Cara Laas and Jonathan Lyman. They met at a wedding, and his young children, Bryson and Riley, were more enamored with her than the bride. These children were absolutely adorable. In fact, they were my favorite part of the book. Cara and Jonathan were well developed characters. At times I could relate to them, but other times I was shaking my head in disbelief at their actions. This is a sweet romance that at times had outrageously bold things done that were frankly too unbelievable for a newly acquainted couple.

Conversations were a bit far fetched. Cara and Jonathan had many deep conversations so quickly. At times it seems they were able to do so with only their eyes. This is something that comes only from a deep connection with someone developed over time. I enjoyed the humor and the spiritual message. Those are two constants that I can depend on in a Chautona Havig book. The message of no sex before marriage is strong in this book. 

To be honest, this book just left me confused. I am still thinking about what the author was trying to convey to her readers. Even though I love most of the author’s other books, this one totally missed the mark with me. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit.

About the Book

Book: Speak Now

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Fiction / Christian / Romance

Release date: May 30, 2013

Speak Now REVISED COVER -sm

Some say you only love once. They’re wrong.

Ask Jonathan Lyman. Still grieving for his wife, he walks into that wedding with no idea his entire life is about to change. It was just supposed to be a simple—oh, who am I kidding? It was supposed to be a typical, lavish, family wedding.

But there’s nothing typical about falling in love with a woman walking down the aisle. So to speak.

Cara Laas is falling hard and fast for a man whose heart doesn’t want to let go of the past and is rushing to meet her in the present. At the same time. That she’s half in love with his children doesn’t help, either.

Their attraction may be their undoing, but is either ready for “till death do us part?”

She’s a master at making others comfortable. He’s never comfortable talking, but if he wants her heart, he’s going to have to speak—now sooner than later, if you don’t mind.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

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Author of the bestselling Aggie and Past Forwardseries, Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

More from Chautona

All New Cover, All New Edits, Same Great Story?

The article condemned the overuse of dialogue. I did a bit of research, and my heart sank. It seemed dialogue was out. Lyrical prose was in. Great. Just what I needed.

I write a decidedly dialogue-driven story. Always have.

Every time I tried to shift character discussions into narrative, my prose took a nose-dive into a tank of boring info-dumping. Blech. Those characters wanted to talk. They didn’t want me to tell readers what they wanted to say. They wanted me to let them tell their story as they lived it.

Characters can be pretty demanding.

Then Jonathan stepped up. He didn’t talk—didn’t want to talk. In fact, he didn’t like it. Refused to do it. And yet… how could he hope to get to know a woman who fascinated him if he didn’t at least ask questions to get her to carry most of the conversation.

Research says that if you gaze into someone’s eyes for four minutes, you’ll develop a strong bond with that person. I suspect that’s what “love at first sight” is. Two people who foolishly keep gazing into a stranger’s eyes long enough to form that bond. Or something.

I also suspect that’s what happened to Jonathan that night.

So here I had a character who did not like to talk. And aside from self-absorbed people, most of us don’t like to carry an entire conversation alone, so the woman he met that night, Cara, wouldn’t enjoy chatting all by herself all night.

Look, I tried to make it less dialogue-driven and not all info-dumpy. I tried to keep it an engaging read without so much discussion. But the dialogue refused to go away. It wanted its place. It needed to be there.

So I caved, certain I was going to be a mediocre writer for the rest of my life.

I hated that book for so long. In fact, I never intended to publish it. Why would I put something out there so very bad? The articles, books, videos—all the things I’d read said I was doing something wrong.

Except one friend. Michele loved the story—begged for new installments. Pleaded with me to finish it. So, I did. For her. I published it, even. Only for her. And you know what? I still hated it.

Despite that book having the best scene I’ve ever written in it.

No joke. There’s a scene in there that I’m always amazed to realize that I wrote. It’s powerful and raw and oh, so poignant. And yes, there are words in it—spoken words by my characters.

A few years passed. I still didn’t like the book. In my mind, it was a failure.

Then someone said something to me one day. “You are so good at dialogue.”

Later, someone else said it again. And later, I heard it again. Here I’d spent all this time and frustration fighting against one of my biggest writing strengths. Because some article made me question the best way to write. When I did searches on writing good dialogue, guess what? I found rebuttal arguments that included references to books I loved. Oops.

To say my eyes opened, and I saw something new in that story might be overkill. If anything, I assumed that meant it was as bad as I thought.

I felt certain that was why I didn’t like that book. It didn’t have “my” dialogue. So I reread it, determined to figure out if I should rewrite the whole thing with more.

Know what I discovered? I like the book.

Okay, Speak Now may never make my top-ten favorites of the books I’ve written. In fact, I guarantee it won’t.

But it won’t make the bottom ten anymore, either. In fact, it’s closer to top than bottom these days. And now it has a new cover, which I’m sure my daughter is pleased about. As the photographer for my original cover, she hated how I blew out the highlights on it. I loved the effect for that book, but with new editing, a few dialogue changes, and of course, that scene I love so much (and one tiny subplot that I never explored well changed for something else), it needed a new cover. And so I have it now. Introducing Speak Now 2.0. I’m so excited to share this book with the world.

Blog Stops

Inklings and notions, November 5

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 6

Simple Harvest Reads, November 6 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

deb’s Book Review, November 7

Elly Gilbert, November 7

Texas Book-aholic, November 8

Cultivating Us, November 8

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 9

Lots of Helpers, November 10

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 10

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 11

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 12

Blogging With Carol, November 12

She Lives To Read, November 13

Kayem Reads, November 14

For Him and My Family, November 14

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 15

Pause for Tales, November 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 16

Spoken from the Heart, November 16

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 18

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of Speak Now!!

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/12f85/speak-now-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Stone and the Secrets Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

The Stone and the Secrets by author Jan Davis Warren is Book Three in her Secrets series. I had not read the first two and had no problems following along with this riveting, exciting tale. I am eager to now read the first two books, The Secret Life of Lady Evangeline and The Sword and the Secrets.


This historical romance was set in Medieval times. I was immediately engaged in the story and character of feisty Lady Elise as she attempted to fly with her homemade wings. I could tell from the beginning few pages this was going to be a story full of action, adventure, science, and love. It was!


The author has a lovely style of writing. Early on I was lost in her storytelling and found myself back in time in a world far different than ours. However, Elise was met with prejudice and slander because of her gender so somethings never change or change very much.


The characters are endearing. Elise and William are lovable and easy to cheer on. A few other characters are rather selfish, self-centered, and downright despicable. The author has done an excellent job making them realistic. I loved their conversations, also.


This novel is filled with nonstop intrigue, action, romance as well as many life and inspirational lessons. The author has done a great job researching, organizing, and penning her tale. I would highly recommend it. It gets a 5 out of 5 star rating from me. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit, but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: The Stone and the Secrets

Author: Jan Davis Warren

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: November 9, 2021

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Science has always been her haven…until a secret expedition proves more dangerous than she bargained for. 

Lady Elise Stanton loves the Lord, her family, science, and William Degraf. William was always around to help with her experiments—at least, until she reached marriageable age. Unable to convince him that it is not a noble bloodline that makes a man worthy, but a noble heart, she turns to science to soothe her disappointment. She’s admitted to the School of Scientifica in London, far from her home at Brighton Castle. She’s eager to join a scientific expedition intent on tracking down a large meteorite strike. The hope is their study will unlock secrets of the universe, which will help mankind. Superstitions and fear surrounding the stones threaten the expedition. As dangers mount, William’s unexpected arrival could be the answer to her prayers…or the harbinger of more peril to come.

William Degraf chooses to join the king’s army to escape the growing secret love he has for Lady Elise. He is a low-born innkeeper’s son and not worthy to marry a lady of noble blood. His plan is to rise in ranks and one day earn great honors to declare for her hand. That hope is shattered when he loses his right leg in battle while saving his best friend from the enemy’s lance. When he receives information that a group of assassins have been hired to kill the king and all with noble blood, he must warn Elise and her family. Can he reach Elise in time to protect her from danger, then stand aside and watch her marry another?

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

Jan Davis Warren photo

Jan Davis Warren is a mother, grandmother, and a young-at-heart great-grandmother. Her wonderful husband passed away the same year she won the ACFW Genesis Award for Romantic Suspense. That win and many others are encouraging reminders that God wants her to continue writing even in the tough times. Learn more at http://www.janwarrenbooks.com.

More from Jan

Writing The Stone and the Secrets was as much a joy as it was a challenge.

The hero and heroine of this book were first introduced in book 2, The Sword and the Secrets. Several readers loved Elise and William so much, they wanted to know more about them. The Stone and the Secrets is Elise and William’s story.

Book 3, The Stone and the Secrets was also to complete the series, but as soon as it was finished, I knew there would have to be one more. I already have the title, plot, and the characters, but I’ll share more about that another day.

As a writer, I love getting to know the characters. Before the story is finished, it’s like I’ve known them their whole lives. It’s fun, but challenging to allow the characters to evolve without pushing them to the end too soon. Spoiler alert. I absolutely LOVE a happily-ever-after ending. It gives me, as the author, a satisfying feeling of closure. You can laugh, but it’s true.

The hero and heroine in The Stone and the Secrets are not the typical h/h you might imagine living in medieval times.

The beautiful and intelligent, Lady Elise Stanton has a long and impressive royal linage. Because of her heritage, protocol demands she marry someone with an equally impressive noble bloodline. The problem is, Elise has no interest in protocol, titles, or matchmaking, and refuses to be courted by empty-headed men who know nothing of using a forge, or mending a broken carriage axle. She’s a scientist whose curiosity about the how things work has gotten her into trouble since she was old enough to take things apart. With her creative mind, she is always thinking of new things to invent. Her first attempt to fly almost got her killed, but for our hero, William Degraf’s timely intervention.

He’s saved Elise many times during their childhood—a challenge he gladly accepts for he loves her deeply. However, William’s love for Elise is not to be. He must sacrifice his love so she can fulfill her destiny, which means marrying a man with title and wealth, neither of which he has. He is strong, handsome, and of noble character, but has not a noble bloodline.

Once Elise becomes of marriageable age, he realizes seeing her courted would be too painful, so he joins the king’s army. By becoming a knight, he hopes to forget her.

As I got to know Sir William Degraf, a knight of the king’s army, I can tell you, there’s not a braver or more loyal man to be found in all of England.

In the title, The Stone and the Secrets, the stone was initially meant to represent the meteorites, which Elise is determined to locate. She feels they are the answer to finding a unique metal needed for a secret project.

To my unexpected delight, in the midst of writing this story, I realized the “stone” also represents the Lord, our Corner Stone, the Rock of Ages, the Stone that the builder rejected, and much more.

This is also an adventure story, so, of course, there’s hidden treasure and several villains, each with a goal to kill, steal and destroy. Assassins, murderous pagans, and a madman intent on revenge, all who are determined to wreak havoc along the way.

Which begs to question. With so much coming against them…

Can William reach Elise in time to save her, this time from a fate worse than death?

And, with William being a lowborn commoner, and Elise of noble blood, how can they possibly have their happily-ever-after?

I’m so excited. I can’t wait to tell you. They…

Oh, no, I’ve used up all my allotted words. Sorry, I guess you’ll have to read The Stone and the Secrets to find out.

May God bless and keep you, and give you peace.

Jan Davis Warren

Blog Stops

Connect in Fiction, November 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 2

Texas Book-aholic, November 3

Inklings and notions, November 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 5

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 6

Tell Tale Book Reviews, November 7 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, November 7

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 8

deb’s Book Review, November 9

Connie’s History Classroom, November 10

Mary Hake, November 10

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 12

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 13

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, November 14 (Author Interview)

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 14

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jan is giving away the grand prize of a $50 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/12b89/the-stone-and-the-secrets-celebration-tour-giveaway

A Picture of Hope Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

A Picture of Hope by author Liz Tolsma is part of Barbour Publishing’s Heroines of WWII Series.This was a Christian historical fiction and very unique captivating tale about an incident from WWII. I have never read a story like this even though I have seen movies and read other books about WWII. This heartfelt story will stay with readers long after finishing this exceptional book. It is a fictionalization of real events and actual people.


This phenomenal book tells the story of Nellie Wilkerson, a photo journalist from Chicago, who finds her way to Nazi occupied France in 1944. It is also about Jean-Paul, whose mother is French and father a Nazi.  Jean-Paul is part of the French resistance and allows Nellie to join him as he searches for other members of his team. They find a young Mongoloid girl and decide to take her to a convent for shelter.


Author Tolsma has done an exemplary job of research for this project. With her skilled hand she took me to 1944 war torn France and taught me things I never knew about this horrific time. I loved some of the secondary characters. I hated how unbelievably cruel the Nazis were. 


This was a suspenseful story that made my heart race at times. It is such an amazing book that I do not even want to tell much of the story. Touching, heart wrenching, riveting, adventure, romance, inspirational, and suspense are just a few words to describe this epic novel. I had trouble absorbing it at times, but I could not put it down. Thoughts of it are still swirling around in my head.


I definitely recommend this book. Anyone that is interested in WWII will be thrilled to find this gem. It is so unusual that a reading group will chat away for hours and still have more to discuss. There are a few parts difficult to read, but they are mild compared to other accounts. I rate this 5 out of 5 stars. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: A Picture of Hope

Author: Liz Tolsma

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Release date: October, 2021

9781636090191 (1)

A Photojournalist Risks Her Life to Save Children

Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this new series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.

Journalist Nellie Wilkerson has spent the bulk of the war in London, photographing pilots taking off and landing—and she’s bored. She jumps at the chance to go to France, where the Allied forces recently landed. She enlists Jean-Paul Breslau of the French underground to take her to the frontlines. On the journey, they come upon an orphanage where nuns shelter children with disabilities. Can they help save them before the Nazis come to liquidate it?

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

LizTolsma

Liz Tolsma is the author of several WWII novels, romantic suspense novels, prairie romance novellas, and an Amish romance. She is a popular speaker and an editor and resides next to a Wisconsin farm field with her husband and their youngest daughter. Her son is a US Marine, and her oldest daughter is a college student. Liz enjoys reading, walking, working in her large perennial garden, kayaking, and camping. Please visit her website at http://www.liztolsma.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter (@LizTolsma), Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest. She is also the host of the Christian Historical Fiction Talk podcast.

More from Liz

Why Another WWII Novel Set in France

You may well read the back cover of my latest release, A Picture of Hope, and wonder why on earth we need another WWII novel set in France. After all, Kristy Cambron just had one. Melanie Dobson and Sarah Sundin will be coming out with theirs in 2022. So why did I feel the need to write my novel with the same setting?

First of all, I’m a Francophile. I love all things French. It started when I took French in high school. Everyone else was learning Spanish, but I wasn’t into being part of the crowd. There were only a few of us in the class, and it was great fun. We had a wonderful teacher. Being able to pull out some of that French, refine it a bit, and use it in the book was a blast. But I also love French food (who doesn’t?) and everything else.

Secondly, I hadn’t written about France before. When I wrote this proposal at least five or six years ago, I didn’t know France would be so hot. God did, and the book came about in His perfect timing. I’d explored the Netherlands, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and the Philippines. Such a shame that I was leaving out France, so I set about to write a novel located in that country.

Thirdly, there was so much good material to pull from. The French resistance, while small, did good work and sacrificed a great deal to get Jews out of the country and into Switzerland or Spain. The books that Kristy, Melanie, Sarah, and I write are all so different. Only the setting is the same. And when I found out that the famous mime Marcel Marceau was part of the resistance, I couldn’t help but giving him a cameo. Be on the lookout!

Along the way, I discovered some truly heartrending incidents that took place in France. They also compelled me to write this book. I long for the world to remember what happened so that we will never forget. And so that the atrocities committed there will never be repeated.

Fourthly, this was originally the third book in a series. Don’t worry – it’s a stand-alone. Maybe someday I’ll get to publish the other two. The women in the series are all American journalists in Europe. One is a reporter, the other is a broadcaster, and so I decided to make Nellie, the heroine in A Picture of Hope, a photojournalist. And where better to take pictures than on Omaha Beach soon after D-day. How she gets there is based on a very interesting true story, so be sure to read to the end for that one.

There are so many stories about WWII to be told and so many countries that participated in the conflict in one way or the other. The ground is so rich that we aren’t plowing the same parcel. You’ll find all of these books to be very different from each other, each with its own message, its own voice, and its own plot.

The focus in my book is on children with Down syndrome. I have a background in special education, and my husband and I adopted a child from the Philippines with an intellectual disability, so I’ve always had a heart for people with special needs. My daughter brings us so much joy that I wanted to share a glimpse into what these remarkable people are truly capable of.

So that is why I wrote a WWII novel set in France. Make yourself a cup of café au lait, butter up a croissant, and enjoy A Picture of Hope!

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, October 28

Life of Literature, October 28

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 28

Genesis 5020, October 28

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 29

The Book Chic Blog, October 29

Blogging With Carol, October 29

Texas Book-aholic, October 30

Sodbuster Living, October 30

Spoken from the Heart, October 30

Elly Gilbert, October 30

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 31

Inklings and notions, October 31

Labor Not in Vain, October 31

CarpeDiem, October 31

Splashes of Joy, November 1

Reviewingbooksplusmore, November 1

Life, love, writing, November 1

For Him and My Family, November 1

deb’s Book Review, November 2

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, November 2

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, November 2

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, November 3

Betti Mace, November 3

Worthy2Read, November 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 3

Daysong Reflections, November 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 4

Vicky Sluiter, November 4

Southern Gal Loves to Read, November 4

Older & Smarter?, November 5

By the Book, November 5

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 5

Connie’s History Classroom, November 6

For the Love of Literature, November 6

Bigreadersite, November 6

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 6

Rebecca Tews, November 7

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 7

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, November 7

She Lives To Read, November 8

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 8

Where Faith and Books Meet, November 8

Pause for Tales, November 9

Christian Bookaholic, November 9

Through the Fire Blogs, November 9

To Everything There Is A Season , November 9

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, November 10

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 10

Mary Hake, November 10

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Liz is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and copy of A Picture of Hope!!

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/12b83/a-picture-of-hope-celebration-tour-giveaway

Christmas Grace Celebrate Lit Book Tour

Christmas Grace by author Mindy Steele is a poignant Contemporary Amish tale. She is a new author to me and I really enjoyed her style and storyline. The author was able to put a twist on a trial that is often used. It captivated me immediately.

This is the story of Grace. She is sent from her home in Indiana to stay in her aunt’s community in Kentucky. Her father has sent her there to live under her aunt’s supervision. Grace has made a grave mistake and her father will not allow her to remain at home. Grace barely remembers her aunt, and those memories are not of a happy woman.

Author Steele has written a unique plot filled with many twists and surprises. My interest was captured immediately and not released until I read the last page. The characters were a combination of lovable, quirky, and despicable people. Some were so easy to love, and other so easy to dislike. Not only was this a romance, but it had a mystery that had me guessing.

The author skillfully wove timeless life and spiritual lessons all throughout her story. This is a lesson in family, love, forgiveness, redemption, trusting God, and hope. It is about doing the right thing even when it is difficult.

I highly recommend this beautiful, moving story. It will give you all kinds of emotions and things to ponder. This would be an excellent choice for a reading group. I gladly rate it 5 stars. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: Christmas Grace

Author: Mindy Steele

Genre: Amish Romance

Release date: October 26, 2021

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Second chances and the Christmas spirit abound in Mindy Steele’s heartwarming novel, one of faith, love, and the power of community.

Grace Miller believed herself in love with the charming Englischer who eventually broke her heart. Now alone except for the secret life growing inside her, she arrives in the unfamiliar small village of Walnut Ridge, Kentucky, to hide and hopefully gain forgiveness.   She is pleasantly surprised, however, to find a tight-knit, welcoming group who help her heart grow right alongside her belly. And with the holidays around the corner, there’s plenty of preparations to occupy her mind. Also occupying her mind? Her strong, protective neighbor, Cullen Graber, the town’s blacksmith, who seems intent on not allowing her to ever suffer alone.

Cullen Graber gave up on love after too many losses early in life. He planned to live out his days focusing on his smithy business, yet the beautiful and mysterious Grace refuses to leave his thoughts. But can they open their hearts to God’s grace and create a new family together before Grace must return home?

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

Mindy Steele pic

Mindy Steele writes sweet Amish fiction as well as romantic suspense. She is an author of 7 novels. The Miller’s Creek Amish series, Christmas Grace, Christmas in Cranberry, His Amish Wife’s Hidden past, and An Amish Flower Farm, releasing 2021. If not gardening or visiting her Amish neighbors, she is on the family farm writing her newest inspiration.

More from Mindy

Behind the scenes with Christmas Grace:

  1. Many are fascinated with the Amish. Their lifestyle, their faith and family. They are talented craftsman, extraordinary bakers, and wonderful stewards of the land. For me, it was their community as a whole. The Amish are some of the best examples of community. How they tend to one another and work alongside each other even without the need of a disaster or tragedy to occur. I didn’t even realize until a close friend who reads my manuscripts pointed it out, but every book I have written thus far has been mostly centered around community. ( I thought that was cool) Walnut Ridge was the first community I ever fictionalized and I still find myself wanting to go back and writing more about the wonderful people who live there.
  2. As an avid reader of Amish fiction I wanted to write a story that wasn’t so…perfect, because none of us are. Grace Miller made a mistake, and finds herself having to face the consequences of that. I think we all can relate somewhat to her. Getting to know the three local communities near me, I find myself drawn more to the imperfect and how they carry on more than the upright and grounded. There is a scene where a group of women share their imperfections with Grace. It became a turning point in her life.
  3. Walnut Ridge, Kentucky is completely fictional, as are all of my book settings currently. I have a love for setting a stage, building a place from the ground up. Although my hero, Cullen Graber was born and raised in Walnut Ridge, Grace Miller was not. Getting to know a character like Grace was a pleasure, but required a lot of research. Although I have seen much of our great country I live less than a half an hour from my birthplace.
  4. Many books and films paint a picture on the meaning of shunning, but it doesn’t happen as often as you think or to the severity portrayed. I met a woman the year this book was wrote and learned a lot from her own personal plight. She had been shunned from her community and never returned, but still speaks to her mother and siblings, often. Grace was shunned for a time in her community, but even after confessing her sin, asking forgiveness and receiving it from her church and community members, her father sent her away from his house out of shame. As a parent to five, there are few times in those teenaged years I wanted to bann a kid or two, but my heart went out to Grace here.
  5. I love creating characters who are realistic and relatable, but also swoon worthy and Cullen Graber is one I have had in my back pocket for a while. The gentle giant, slow to speak, fast to listen, and has a past too. I hope you come to find him as stoic yet imperfect as I wrote him.
  6. There is a scene in the book where Grace finds herself completely alone and facing monsters. (No, I’m not giving out a spoiler here) I have found myself in such a place a time or two as I imagine many have. That moment when fear and bravery collide. This scene was actually inspired by a horrible nightmare while writing Christmas Grace. After reading, I bet you can guess what I’m afraid of.
  7. I am a panster, not a plotter, but even I was shocked that I wrote this book in three weeks while working full time. I have tried my hand at plotting, but find once my characters start to reveal themselves, I have no more control over the story than I did my children’s choice in careers. My process is scary actually, according to Mr. Steele that is. (wink wink) I get an idea, start drafting out characters, setting, and pace or walk for two days while my head figures it all out. Then its pen and paper until that first draft is complete.
  8. When you hear the word Amish, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Yep, food. I happen to be a food lover and an expert on the subject. Grace found herself unable to work at the job her aunt had set up for her but found she had a purpose, and a place to fit in. We all have a purpose, and a place in our community.
  9. When I first signed with my amazing agent, Julie Gwinn, we both had hopes for the first book I wrote. She had planned on pitching it two months later so there was time to polish it until it shined. Then she called me up and asked me how quick I could write a second book to pitch too, not wanting to simply go in with one book I assume, but I know nothing about the stresses of a agents work. My mother insist this is who I am, the one who best performs under pressure, without time to prep, think. I tend to disagree. But in three weeks Christmas Grace was finished and ready for editing. I have wrote two contemporaries in short time spans, but Grace’s book, my first contracted book, will always be that one I always remember. Mostly because of I ran out of coffee twice, forgot to shower and eat a few days and learned it’s alright to talk to yourself if you really need someone to hear your thoughts. Oh, and the publisher bought a second book too. I can’t wait to share A Cranberry Christmas with you.

Much love, Mindy

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, October 27

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 27

Texas Book-aholic, October 28

Inklings and notions, October 29

Britt Reads Fiction, October 29

lakesidelivingsite, October 30

Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 30 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Blogging With Carol, October 31

For Him and My Family, October 31

Older & Smarter?, November 1

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 1

She Lives To Read, November 2

deb’s Book Review, November 2

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 3

Elly Gilbert, November 3

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 4

Simple Harvest Reads, November 4 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 5

Mary Hake, November 5

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 6

Splashes of Joy, November 6

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 7

Spoken from the Heart, November 7

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 8

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, November 8

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 9

Vicky Sluiter, November 9

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Mindy is giving away a copy of her book to five winners!

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/12b80/christmas-grace-celebration-tour-giveaway

Glimpses of the Savior Celebrate Lit Tour and Giveaway

Glimpses of the Savior, 50 Meditations for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year, is a lovely holiday devotional by authors Shirley Crowder and Harriet E. Michael. During a time when our lives start to be busy with preparations for gatherings and dinners, these devotions offer a chance to get readers back on track and focus on Jesus. This is a much needed addition to my devotional collection.

There are fifty devotions included in this lovely book. It is meant to begin one week before Thanksgiving to carry you through the New Year. The first thing that drew me to it was the gorgeous, serene cover. The book is divided into ten sections with topics of The Crispness of Fall, Here Come the Holidays, and Keeping Christ in Christmas, just to name a few. These sections are divided into five chapters to concentrate on a certain aspect of the season.

Both authors are children of missionaries or MK for short. They have an open style of writing that is like chatting with a friend over coffee. There was an immediate connection to both authors. I was encouraged and enlightened by their devotions. They each have a relatable, open style of writing that is engaging.

The chapters start with a scripture, then have the devotional story, a prayer, and a reflective thought. This is nice for individual reading or even a group if you need a devotion. This book would make a sweet gift before Thanksgiving. Many people need a little more of Jesus and calm and a lot less stress.

I highly recommend this book. Grab yourself a copy and start your holiday mornings with a few minutes of devotional time that will point your heart toward Jesus. Pick up a few copies as gifts and share it with others. I rate this a 5 out of 5 stars. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit, but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: Glimpses of the Savior

Author: Shirley Crowder & Harriet E. Michael

Genre: Christian Living, Devotional

Release date: September 2, 2018

cs-mh Glimpses of the Savior

Finding Jesus Among the Celebrations and Decorations 50 Meditations for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year. In early November, our minds turn to the upcoming holiday season and the new year. We get busy preparing for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the New Year, and all too often, we forget the real meanings of these celebrations. As Christ-followers, we can guard against this by focusing our hearts on God’s Word. Thanksgiving is a time to give God thanks; Christmas is the celebration of the birth of the Savior; the New Year brings new beginnings. This devotional book contains fifty meditations to help you find Jesus among the celebrations and decorations. Begin using the book the week before Thanksgiving and it will carry you into the New Year.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Authors

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Shirley Crowder was born in a mission guest house under the shade of a mango tree in Nigeria, West Africa, where her parents served as missionaries. She and co-author Harriet E. Michael grew up together on the mission field and have been life-long friends. Shirley is passionate about disciple-making, which is manifested in and through a myriad of ministry opportunities: biblical counseling, teaching Bible studies, writing, and music.

She is a biblical counselor and is commissioned by and serves on the national Advisory Team for The Addiction Connection. Several of her articles have appeared in “Paper Pulpit” in the Faith section of The Gadsden Times, and in a David C. Cook publication. She also writes articles for Life Bible Study, Woman’s Missionary Union, and TheAddictionConnection.org. She has authored, co-authored, or contributed to ten books.

Shirley has spiritual children, grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren serving the Lord in various ministry and secular positions throughout the world.

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Harriet E. Michael was born in Joinkrama, Nigeria, deep in the African jungle in the Niger River Delta, where her father served as the only missionary doctor at that station. A few years later, the mission moved the family to a larger hospital in Ogbomoso. Co-author Shirley Crowder and her family lived right across the dirt road. The two children became constant playmates. Today they continue to enjoy their lifelong friendship.

Harriet is a multi-published, award-winning writer, and speaker. She has authored or co-authored eight books (seven nonfiction and one novel), with more under contract for future release. She is also a prolific freelance writer, having penned over 200 articles, devotions, and stories. Her work has appeared in publications by Focus on the Family, David C. Cook, Lifeway, Standard Publishing, Chicken Soup for the SoulThe Upper Room, Judson Press, Bethany House, and more. When not writing, she loves speaking to women’s groups and teaching writing workshops on freelance, devotional, and memoir writing.

She and her husband of over 40 years have four children and three grandchildren. When not writing, she enjoys substituting at a Christian school near her home, gardening, cooking, and traveling.

More from Shirley and Harriet

From Africa to America, Lifelong Friends

 March 14, many years ago …

Deep in the heart of the African jungle in the Niger River delta of eastern Nigeria, the first cry of a newborn baby echoed from a small jungle hospital. The baby was a gir, the third child of medical missionaries, Alice and Keith Edwards. They named their daughter Harriet after Keith’s mother.

Joinkrama is located across the Niger River in the far eastern part of Nigeria. There were no bridges when Alice and Keith set out for their new home so long ago. They crossed the river in a large passenger thatched-roof, canoe-type boat. Joinkrama lies in the small section of Nigeria that is within the tropical rain forest. And it fit the role, with monkeys swinging in the trees, parrots, canaries, and other colorful birds sitting on branches and thatched roofs of the houses, and elephants in the nearby jungle sometimes getting a little too close for comfort. And of course, there were poisonous snakes to watch out for and crocodiles in the river. Children never played on the riverbanks, and swimming was absolutely prohibited! It was in this almost magical setting that Harriet was born.

Though the little jungle hospital was equipped for surgery, and the preferred place to give birth, it was not where Alice wanted to convalesce after giving birth, so she was transported home on a stretcher carried by four men, as it was much too far to walk just after giving birth. As Alice lay on the stretcher with newborn Harriet sleeping in her arms, the villagers they passed thought she and the baby had died in childbirth, people began to weep and mourn.

Alice quickly sat up and waved and held baby Harriet up for them to see. The villagers’ weeping turned to dancing and cheering as they followed her home, dancing, and praising God.

Harriet and her family stayed in this remote part of Nigeria for a year until the other family returned from furlough. At that time, they went for another year to Oyo, Nigeria, to language school and then on to Ogbomoso in central Nigeria, where they stayed the next ten years. Keith practiced medicine at the hospital in Ogbomoso, and Alice worked with him as a nurse.

October 24 of the same year Harriet was born …

Deep in the Yoruba country of southwestern Nigeria, some 260 miles away from Joinkrama, piercing through the tropical night sounds, was heard the first cry of another baby born in a guesthouse in Ogbomoso, under the shade of a mango tree. This baby was also a girl, the fourth child of missionaries Jeannie and Ray Crowder.

Early in the morning, missionary doctors Bill Williams and Ruth Berry, the second woman to ever graduate from the Medical College of Alabama, delivered this baby girl. Single missionary nurse, Lolete Dotson, an MK from South Africa who served a total of 25 years in Nigeria, stood beside the baby’s mom, holding her hand, wiping her face with a wet cloth, and whispering encouraging words.

The family thought the fourth baby would be a second Timothy, yet Shirley Jeanne arrived instead. The Nigerians gave her the name Bamidele, which means “come home with me.” It is a name given to a child born in a place that is not his or her parent’s home. The name was given by the Nigerians to missionary babies, both male and female, who were born there. This is Harriet’s Nigerian name as well.

Several years later, the Crowders moved to Ogbomoso. Ray served as administrator of the 96-bed hospital, and Jeannie taught kindergarten and ministered to the Nigerian women with home visits and Bible studies. Harriet’s parents worked at the Ogbomoso hospital with Ray.

Harriet ended up living just up the dirt road from Shirley. They played together nearly every day and formed a friendship that remained, even after years and distance separated them.

Fast forward to today…

Who knew that these little babies would grow up and write books together? The Edwards and the Crowders stayed in contact throughout the decades. At the annual Nigeria Mission Reunion, Harriet and Shirley reconnected and discovered they both liked to write and they shared similar theological beliefs. A series of social media posts sparked the idea of writing a devotional book together. Glimpses of the Savior is the result of that idea. And here we are today still writing books together.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 25

Inklings and notions, October 26

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 26

Texas Book-aholic, October 27

For Him and My Family, October 28

By the Book, October 29

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 30

Mary Hake, October 30

deb’s Book Review, October 31

She Lives To Read, November 1

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 1

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 2

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 3

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 4

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 5

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 7

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, Shirley and Harriet are giving away the grand prize package of an eBook copy of the book and a $50 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/126b8/glimpses-of-the-savior-celebration-tour-giveaway

A Season on the Wind Celebrate Lit Book Tour

A Season on the Wind by award winning, best selling author Suzanne Woods Fisher is a fascinating Contemporary Amish novel. It is set in Pennsylvania and tells the story of sibling birdwatchers, Micah and Penny Weaver. This was such a fascinating story and taught me so much. Even if you are not an Amish fan, you will love this book. Trust me on this.

It is also the story of Amish fence jumper Ben Zook. He is a renowned bird expert and author of multiple books. He travels back to his Amish hometown after reports of a rare bird sighting. His cousin, Natalie, accompanies him. They stay in the Weavers’ guest house.

I adore books written by author Fisher. A Season on the Wind captured my attention immediately. I was invested in the story and the lives of the characters. Each character was unique and relatable. After a few chapters they became my friends, and I could picture myself in their little community. The author transported me into her story as I was reading. Her vivid descriptions took me behind the lenses of bird lovers and gave me a better understanding of them. There were many surprise twists as well as heartfelt moments.

I have read other bird watching books. This one by far educated me more on our feathered friends. After reading it I found myself lingering longer at the kitchen window after making coffee looking at them. I love it when a novel moves me in such a personal way.

There is so much good in this poignant tale. Life lessons on forgiveness, trusting God’s timing, faith, redemption, family, and love are just a few. The spiritual message is inspiring. If someone does not make a television series or movie out of this phenomenal masterpiece, it will be a shame.

This magnificent story earns a solid five stars from me, unless I may sneak in another star and give it a six. Yes, it is that good. Perfect for a reading group, the author has included Questions for Conversation before her Author’s Notes. I highly recommend it for lovers of nature, contemporary fiction, light romance, Amish, and inspirational fiction. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but this is my honest opinion.

About the Book

Book: A Season on the Wind

Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher

Genre: Amish Fiction

Release date: October 5, 2021

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Ben Zook had only two loves in his life: books and birds. In a stroke of good fortune, he’d stumbled onto a way to cobble together those two loves into a career, writing books about rare birds. He was as free as a bird–until a chase for a rare White-winged Tern takes him to the one place on earth he planned to never return: his Amish home in Stoney Ridge.

Desperate for photographs of the elusive tern, Ben hires a local field guide, Micah Weaver, and boards at Micah’s farm, planning to “bag the bird” and leave Stoney Ridge before anyone recognizes him. But he neglected to plan for Micah’s sister, Penny. One long-ago summer, Penny had introduced Ben to birding, even sharing with him a hidden eagle aerie. That eagle became his spark bird–the one that inspired his lifelong love.

Ben. He was Penny’s spark bird. That was when she knew true love. She’d always hoped Ben would come back to Stoney Ridge. Back to his Amish roots. Back to her. The only problem? Ben has absolutely no memory of Penny.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

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With over one million copies sold, Suzanne Woods Fisher is a bestselling, award winning author of over 30 books, ranging from novels to children’s books to non-fiction. She is a Christy Award finalist, a Carol and Selah award winner, and a two-time finalist for ECPA Book of the Year. She writes stories that take you to places you’ve never visited—one with characters that seem like old friends. But most of all, her books give you something to think about long after you’ve finished reading it. Suzanne lives with her very big family in northern California.

More from Suzanne

Did You Know? 8 Facts about the Christmas Bird Count

1) The year 2021 marks the 122nd National Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count (CBC) which, ironically, wasn’t always about counting live birds.

2) In 1900, the first CBC was launched as an alternative to the traditional Christmas “side hunt.” This holiday tradition encouraged people to go out into the woods on Christmas Day, choose “sides” to team up with and then, in the words of Frank Chapman, “kill everything in fur or feathers that crossed their path – if they could.” The winner was the “side” with the largest pile of dead birds. (Ugh!)

3) Frank Chapman was a prominent ornithologist, conservationist, and writer/editor who published Bird Lore magazine. He led the charge to end to this senseless slaughter and invited his readers to begin a new holiday tradition of counting, rather than shooting, birds.

4) Twenty-seven people participated in 25 counts that first year (in 1900). They counted 90 species of birds.

5) The idea caught on. Big time.

6) During December and January of each year, thousands of Christmas Bird Counts take place across the U.S., Canada, Central and South America, the Caribbean, and the Pacific Islands. The purpose of the CBC is a scientific census—to assess the health of bird populations and help guide conservation action.

7) Each CBC has an established 15-mile diameter circular count area. On a pre-arranged date, registered teams go out (with an assigned volunteer observer) and count the number of birds of each species they can identify within their assigned area. Each count has a volunteer compiler who sums up all of the lists and inputs the total numbers for each species into Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count database.

8) The CBC is the longest-running citizen science project and wildlife survey in the world. In fact, the CBC is considered the gold standard in citizen science.

And you don’t have to be an experienced birdwatcher to participate in the CBC! Bird lovers of all skills are welcomed. Even me! I’m a very enthusiastic amateur.

To learn more about the Christmas Bird Count, or to find a survey near you, go tohttps://www.audubon.org/conservation/science/christmas-bird-count

To learn more about Suzanne and the story about the Christmas Bird Count featured in A Season on the Wind, go to http://www.suzannewoodsfisher.com.

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, October 23

Lighthouse-Academy, October 23

She Lives To Read, October 24

lakesidelivingsite, October 24

Southern Gal Loves to Read, October 24

Artistic Nobody, October 25 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

For Him and My Family, October 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 26

CarpeDiem, October 26

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 26

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 27

Inklings and notions, October 27

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 28

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 28

Blogging With Carol, October 28

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 29

Texas Book-aholic, October 29

deb’s Book Review, October 30

Simple Harvest Reads, October 30 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 30

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 31

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 31

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 1

SusanLovesBooks, November 1

Mary Hake, November 1

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 2

Blossoms and Blessings, November 2

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 3

Splashes of Joy, November 3

Pause for Tales, November 3

By The Book, November 4

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 4

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, November 5

Spoken from the Heart, November 5

Vicky Sluiter, November 5

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away the grand prize of 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/126b3/a-season-on-the-wind-celebration-tour-giveaway

Recipes for a Delicious Life Book Review

Celebrity Chef Zipora Einav has written a delightful book: Recipes for a Delicious Life, Discover The Perfect Blend of Food & Music to Stimulate Your Appetite for Lasting Health, Harmony & Joy! It is a feel good, inspiring book that includes music, recipes, memories, and pearls of wisdom. I really enjoyed it.


Chef Zipora has a resume that includes a wide variety of celebrities. She reminisces about her time with them and shares recipes that were their favorites. This is an endearing story that tells the chef’s early years in Israel, her love of food and music, how she came to America and how she came to be a chef to stars. There are many stories about the clients Chef Zipora cooked for as well as her travels with some of them around the world.


The style of this book is inviting. I felt as if we were sipping tea across from one another at a table, soft music playing, and chatting away. There is so much to glean from this book. The common thread throughout this book is that we need harmony and balance in the kitchen. Music impacts the mood of a chef as she cooks, Zipora believes. She also shares that healthy food, prepared well, will nurture your body as well as your mind. Unless I missed it, I did not read anything about nurturing your soul.

I found many recipes that I am eager to make. They all sound delicious. The recipes she shared were favorites of her former clients, Mariah Carey, Pierce Brosnan, Bob Hope and the Kelly family. At the end of the book there are links for additional information and recipes. It is entitled “Takeaway Time.”


I highly recommend this book. If you have a foodie, music lover, or celebrity follower, this would make a nice book for them. Christmas is just around the corner. This will make a nice addition to your collection, too. It gets a 5 star rating from me. A copy was provided by HigherLife Publishing but these are my own honest words.

Purchase here: https://www.amazon.com/Recipe-Delicious-Life-Discover-Stimulate/dp/0999415611/ref=tmm_hrd_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1634866174&sr=8-1

About the Author

Chef Zipora Einav has enjoyed a distinguished career as a Private Celebrity Chef preparing exquisite meals to meet each client’s unique tastes, dietary requirements, and nutritional goals. She has extensive knowledge in a wide range of cuisines and cooking techniques, specializing in Mediterranean, Kosher, Vegetarian/Vegan, and Gluten-Free meals.

She has served as the private chef and served meals to celebrities such as Mariah Carey, Pierce Brosnan, Jack Nicholson, Bob Hope, Aaron Spelling, Seal, Scarlet Johansson, and many others

Her company, Chef Zipora Enterprise – Comfort Food in Harmony with Your Health™ is dedicated to improving people’s lives by empowering individuals and families to eat well and embrace a healthy lifestyle.

She has traveled extensively throughout the world and been interviewed on multiple radio and television shows.

Now, Zipora shares her unique zest for life, love, music, and food with you. 

Zipora was raised in Natanya, Israel, served in the Israeli military, and became a U.S Citizen in 1995. She has two grown sons, David and Rani, and  currently resides in Scottsdale, Arizona.

From the Author

Chef Zipora Einav has enjoyed a distinguished career as a Private Celebrity Chef preparing exquisite meals to meet each client’s unique tastes, dietary requirements, and nutritional goals. She has extensive knowledge in a wide range of cuisines and cooking techniques, specializing in Mediterranean, Kosher, Vegetarian/Vegan, and Gluten-Free meals.

She has served as the private chef and served meals to celebrities such as Mariah Carey, Pierce Brosnan, Jack Nicholson, Bob Hope, Aaron Spelling, Seal, Scarlet Johansson, and many others

Her company, Chef Zipora Enterprise – Comfort Food in Harmony with Your Health™ is dedicated to improving people’s lives by empowering individuals and families to eat well and embrace a healthy lifestyle.

She has traveled extensively throughout the world and been interviewed on multiple radio and television shows.

Now, Zipora shares her unique zest for life, love, music, and food with you. 

Zipora was raised in Natanya, Israel, served in the Israeli military, and became a U.S Citizen in 1995. She has two grown sons, David and Rani, and  currently resides in Scottsdale, Arizona.

When the Pilot Falls Celebrate Lit Tour and Giveaway

When the Pilot Falls by author April Hayman is a Christian historical fiction that begins with a thrill. It captured my attention and had me fully engaged in the story immediately. It is part of the Ever After Mystery Series.


Set in 1923, this is the story of Willie. She is a female bi-wing stunt plane pilot. Wow! I never expected to encounter that in reading Christian Fiction. It is also the tale of Hugh. He is a great guy and man of his word. There are secondary characters that stand out. I was able to become invested in the lives of Willie and Hugh through the excellent storytelling.


This tale takes Willie into the middle of a Prohibition era feud between two major crime families. There is mystery, intrigue, romance, adventure, action, and history rolled up into one splendid story with some spiritual and life lessons sprinkled throughout.


I would recommend this book. It is a quick, entertaining read. It is another good verses evil fairy tale retelling. I enjoyed the way the author writes and look forward to seeing more from her. This gets a 4 star rating from me. Celebrate Lit provided a copy but these are my own words.

About the Book

Book: When the Pilot Falls

Author: April Hayman

Genre: Christian Historical Mystery, Fairytale

Release date: September 7, 2021

HAYMAN-When-the-Pilot-Falls-sm

In 1923, there aren’t many pilots, but Willie Labeau didn’t let that stop… her.

A bear of a man, Hugh Taylor, needs a stunt plane pilot, and despite their rocky introduction, Willie sets off for golden California and a new life as his pilot. There’s just one little thing she has to do in addition to flying.

Leave his past alone. Period.

When the flame of her own curiosity becomes fanned by encouragement from Willie’s sister, the feisty pilot can’t help but do just a little investigating.

And Hugh vanishes.

Friends rally around her, and with all the information she can find in hand, Willie sets off to rescue Hugh and battle the evil family holding him hostage.

A fierce air race, a sincere act of humility—are they enough to free Hugh and give Willie a chance to be with him… forever?

Find out in this next book in the Ever After Mysteries, combining beloved fairy tales and mysteries. When the Pilot Falls offers a retelling of “East of the Sun, West of the Moon” that will keep you gripped to the edge of your seat as you watch hearts soar and daring dos.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

april

April Hayman lives in the high desert of California with her husband and their three sons. During the day, she focuses on homeschooling the boys and working on client projects. She writes at night when the temperature outside is only somewhat cooler than during the day.

Her passion for reading began in grade school and her teachers often reprimanded her for reading when she should have been completing her math assignments. Now she reads whenever she likes and writes for those who love to read.

April collects fountain pens, has too many pen pals (and always looking for more), journals sporadically, creates art when she can squeeze it in, and hordes stationery.

More from April

I’ve always loved to write. I still remember pounding out a science fiction story about a lizard man on my Grandmother’s typewriter, with its sticky ‘e’ key, then excitedly asking to read it to her. She patiently listened and praised my writing. I was thrilled even though, now as an adult, I realized she was humoring me. I continued to write on an off for the next twenty years, but it wasn’t until I found National Novel Writing Month that I really began to write in earnest.

I’d already begun my search into story structure and, one day while researching, NaNoWriMo popped up on my browser window. Interested, I clicked over and I was intrigued. Here was a chance to write 50,000 words in thirty days with a support group of other writers! And, with a day to go, I signed up. After all, how hard is it to write 50,000 words?

Turns out, it’s super hard. Especially when you’re new to story structure, developing characters, and correct pacing. It was a fabulous disaster of a story, but I did manage to hit my mark and “win” that year. And, best of all, I’d met Chautona Havig. She and I became friends and her brilliant writing advice and support has meant the world to me.

Every year after that, except when I moved away, I participated. Eventually I became a Municipal Liaison, the head volunteer and writer wrangler, for our area. It was a lot of fun but not one of those books has been published. They’re just for me and I love them, even if they’re awful.

Eventually, my participation was noticed by my three boys. While all of them enjoy reading to varying degrees, writing was always hard for them. Not that they don’t love to tell a good story. It’s the writing part that’s hard. Anyway, my eldest son finally decided to join the Young Writers Program (NaNoWriMo for pre-teens and teens) one year and got bitten by the writing bug. We’re currently working on his latest story. I’m so happy to have passed on my love of writing to him and his brothers!

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 16

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 16

Texas Book-aholic, October 17

Inklings and notions, October 18

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, October 18 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 19

For Him and My Family, October 19

deb’s Book Review, October 20

SodbusterLiving, October 20

ABBA’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 21

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 22

Simple Harvest Reads, October 22 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 23

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 23

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 24

Connect in Fiction, October 24

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 25

Connie’s History Classroom, October 26

Mary Hake, October 26

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 27

Aryn the Libraryan 📚, October 27

For the Love of Literature, October 28

Through the Fire Blogs, October 28

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 29

Back Porch Reads, October 29

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, April is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 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/126ae/when-the-pilot-falls-celebration-tour-giveaway