Blog

A Christmas Tale for Little Women Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

A Christmas Tale for Little Women by author Linda Brooks Davis is a Christian historical holiday romance novella. It is a short read and perfect for this time of year. I love holiday books and novellas.

This story is the prequel to The Awakening of Miss Adelaide. I have previously read and reviewed this brilliant story. It earned a five star rating from me. This novella is just as good.

Adelaide is an endearing character. She is talented, charming, and caring. We meet her nieces Dahlia and Camilla. Both girls are delighted to spend time with their aunt during the holiday season but are missing family.

There are precious life and spiritual messages woven throughout this poetic tale. The characters are wonderful and the writing is beautiful. You will be glad you read this sweet story.

I highly recommend this novella. It gets a 5 star rating from me. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit, but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: A Christmas Tale for Little Women

Author: Linda Brooks Davis

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Release Date: September 15, 2020

A Christmas Tale for Little Women

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

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

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

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

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

Davis_LindaBrooks_300dpi_2x2.5 copy

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

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

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

More from Linda

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Thank you, Lord.

Note: Photos from Pixabay

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 20

Blogging With Carol, October 20

Through the Lens of Scripture, October 21

Connect in Fiction, October 21

Get Cozy Book Nook, October 21

She Lives To Read, October 22

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

For Him and My Family, October 23

deb’s Book Review, October 23

Splashes of Joy, October 23

Connie’s History Classroom, October 24

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 25

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

Mary Hake, October 25

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 26

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 26

KarenSueHadley, October 27

lakesidelivingsite, October 27

Pause for Tales, October 27

Older & Smarter?, October 28

Inklings and notions, October 28

Betti Mace, October 29

Captive Dreams Window, October 29

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 30

CarpeDiem, October 30

Texas Book-aholic, October 31

Batya’s Bits, October 31

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, November 1

Moments, November 1

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

Sara Jane Jacobs, November 2

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 2

Giveaway

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

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10264/a-christmas-tale-for-little-women-celebration-tour-giveaway

Legacy of Honor Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

Legacy of Honor by author Renae Brumbaugh Green is a Christian historical romance set in Texas. This is Book One in the author’s Stratton Legacy Series. It is filled with a beautiful Christian message and western story.

This is the tale of Emma Monroe. When the book opens it is her mother’s burial. Emma is left to care for an ill father and younger brother. She is a feisty, Christian young woman.

It is also the story of Riley Stratton and his complicated, disfunction family. His mother died years ago and was best friends with Emma’s mother. Allison, his spoiled, snooty sister-in-law is left to run the house. The elder Stratton has an ongoing grudge with Mr. Monroe that goes back decades. He does not even speak to him.

The author has written a story that includes many life and spiritual lessons. Scripture is woven throughout the book and adds to the lessons. Readers will see bitterness, arrogance, hatred, prejudice, and unforgiveness played out. There is also love, caring, nurturing, redemption, and grace.

Some parts of the story or words seemed too modern for the setting. The conversations were just a bit that way, also. The descriptions were spot on, and I could easily imagine both Stratton homes and where Emma lived.

I recommend this book. Anyone that enjoys historical Christian romance will like this. There are a few twist and turns to keep it interesting. It receives a 3.5 star rating from me. I received a copy from Celebrate Lit but these are my own words.

About the Author

Book: Legacy of Honor

Author: Renae Brumbaugh Green

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: Nov, 2020

Legacy of Honor

He’s been raised to carry on the legacy. 

After her mother’s untimely death, Emma Monroe’s dreams to become a teacher are dashed. She takes a job as maid and cook at the local Stratton Ranch, where she endures humiliation and hardship in order to provide for her ailing father and younger brother. Only Riley Stratton, her childhood friend and heir to the Stratton fortune, sees her heart. When she’s asked to care for Skye, the young half-Indian girl most family members refuse to claim, Emma finally finds the purpose she craves.

Riley Stratton has it all, or so it seems. Growing up as the youngest son of the rich and powerful John Stratton, Riley stands to inherit a legacy of greatness in the Stratton Ranch. On the surface, his family looks like they have it all, but manipulation, deceit, and an ever-present quest for power leave him desperate for change. Yet his father has made it clear: do things the Stratton way, or face alienation and disinheritance.
As Riley and Emma choose between honor, dreams, and expectations—not to mention the love they can no longer deny—their first steps prove how quickly the situation can spin into danger. When their best efforts threaten the lives and hopes of those closest to them, it becomes clear the decisions they make will change the course of their lives forever.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

renae humor headshot

Renae Brumbaugh Green is an ECPA Bestselling Author, award-winning humor columnist, and wannabe superhero. She lives in Texas with her handsome, country-boy husband, four nearly-perfect children and one nearly-perfect son-in-law, and far too many animals. When she’s not writing, Renae teaches online classes and tries to be rugged without chipping her nail polish.

More from Renae

I’ve been writing this book for more than a decade!

In 2008, my dear friend and writing mentor, Chip Ricks, shared a book idea with me. Loosely based on her own family history, she wanted to write a story about two brothers—one who chose to live for Christ, the other who didn’t. She wanted to follow that family through the generations, to show the impact of that one choice, on the people who came behind.

She just had one problem. Chip was a brilliant writer, but she wasn’t a fiction writer. “Will you help me write this book?”

Now, Chip was in her 80s at the time. She was a mother, a grandmother, to me in the faith. If she’d asked me to paint the moon pink, I’d have given it my best shot. For several years, Chip and I worked together on several versions of the book. We only ever got through the first few chapters, and we’d change our minds about the characters or the situations. Finally, one day she smiled at me. She said, “You know, Renae. This is your book. I know I whispered the idea to you, but I always wanted you to be the one to write it. I’m getting too old to work on this . . . please take it. It’s your story.”

Soon after, she moved across the country to live with her daughter. We stayed connected via phone calls and Facebook, until eventually, she stopped responding. We lost touch. I continued to write the book—Chip’s book. Now my book. I’d work on it a while, then put it away for several months, even a few years at one point. In 2017, I finished what would become the first final draft. I fiddled with it more, here and there, but I hung onto it until I met Misty Beller, my publisher at Wild Heart.

I submitted the book to her, and she accepted it, right away! Then the editor got hold of it. God bless Erin Taylor Young! She was brutal, in the best possible way. I spent weeks (months?) making the suggested changes, and each one made the book so much better. The day I turned in those final edits to my publisher, I opened up Facebook. There, on Chip’s FB page, was a note to all her friends.

From one of her children.

She’d gone to see her Heavenly Father.

I sat there, frozen, looking at my screen, big fat tears tracking my cheeks. How was it possible that on the day the book was complete, I learned of her death? She was so instrumental in my walk of faith, and in my path as a writer. It was almost like the Holy Spirit wanted me to know . . . this particular journey was now complete.

I hope you enjoy this book, book one in a trilogy, for it is very close to my heart. And I hope you learn from the actions of two brothers, so many years ago, that our choices have an impact on our own lives, and on the lives of those who follow us.

—Renae Brumbaugh Green

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, October 16

Through the Lens of Scripture, October 16

The Christian Fiction Girl, October 17

deb’s Book Review, October 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 18

Labor Not in Vain, October 18

Texas Book-aholic, October 19

Genesis 5020, October 19

Vicky Sluiter, October 20

lakesidelivingsite, October 20

Betti Mace, October 21

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 21

ABBA’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 22

Sodbusterliving, October 22

Older & Smarter?, October 23

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 23

For Him and My Family, October 24

Lighthouse Academy, October 24 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Inklings and notions, October 25

Daysong Reflections, October 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 26

Simple Harvest Reads, October 26 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Artistic Nobody, October 27 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Splashes of Joy, October 27

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 28

Adventures Of a Travelers Wife, October 28

Connie’s History Classroom, October 29

Pause for Tales, October 29

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Renae 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/10258/legacy-of-honor-celebration-tour-giveaway

Let’s Agree to Disagree Nicely

Friends. We all have them and want to be one. Do you know what the definition of a friend is? Let me ask our buddy Webster:

“…definition of friend: 1: a person who has a strong liking for and trust in another person. 2 : a person who is not an enemy or foe.”

That sounds correct. Don’t you think? It is fairly cut and dried. Friends are people you really like, trust, and that are not enemies.

The Bible has something to say about friendship, too. “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. (Proverbs 17:17)” Isn’t it comforting to know that a true friend loves at all times? Not just in good times, but also bad? Friends are supposed to always be friends, even during election year. So what is happening?


Are we allowing someone or something to come between us and our friends? Friendship takes work. Each friend needs to be respectful and considerate of the other. For me, friendship is like a safe haven in a storm. A place where I can always go to feel happy and unthreatened. True, we will not always agree on everything, but our tone will be respectful and loving. There will not be any degrading remarks. We will just agree to disagree and go on.

Unfortunately of late, I have noticed friends that are normally respectful and sweet take on a different persona. Snide comments are left on Facebook posts, hateful things are said about others, including friends, and the need to respond viciously overtakes normal caution. Is that because we can type a response without looking the commenter in the eyes? Our comment may “yell” back in all caps or contain offensive words our lips never speak. Our words cut deep without us having to witness the pain we inflicted.

It breaks my heart to see friend pitted against friend and family member against family member. I still choose to love each one, but their behavior troubles me. Are they succumbing to a plan that has blinded them? Why would these naturally loving and caring people become so callus and cold?

Maybe we should all think about what our words and actions are saying about our souls. Are they in line with the teachings of Jesus? When someone looks at me will they see a member of a political party or a member of the family of God? Will I be a friendly safe haven or a downgrading place of battle for my friends?

The solution? First, take inventory of yourself. Are you proud of how you are representing Jesus? Second, pray. Pray for our friends, our nation, and ourselves. Romans 3:11-12 says: “None is righteous, no, not one;
11     no one understands; no one seeks for God.
12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
    no one does good, not even one.”

Someday this world will all be over. It will not matter which political party was our preference, only that Jesus was our King. Are we living as peacemakers and beacons for Him? I hope I am.


The best news is that we all have a friend that will be there for us. He died on the cross so that we might have eternal life. Scripture says in John 15:13-24 “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.”

Using His example, let’s pray for each other and be kind. Let’s be good friends and agree to disagree.

Sand and Mistletoe Celebrate Lit Book Tour & Giveaway

Sand and Mistletoe by author Chautona Havig is a Christian Contemporary Holiday Romance.  The leaves are falling here in Indiana and that gets me in the mood for holiday books.  What about you?

This is the story of Portia Spears and Reese Whitaker.   They meet on Christmas vacation although Portia is not happy with a warm, sandy Christmas.  She prefers her Christmases snowy white and chilly.  They are each spending Christmas with their families.  Add in all of the relatives and this is quite the holiday.

Dylan is Reese’s son.  He is adorable, and it is worth reading this book Just to experience him.  What a delight!  Actually all of the quirky characters are great.  They are well developed and very believable.

I enjoy the style of writing that this author has.  It is smooth and the story flows evenly from beginning to end.  She does research and plans her story well.  I learned some things about the deaf community and ASL by reading this book.  The spiritual message was nicely woven throughout the entire book.  Her romances are light, sweet, and clean.  

I highly recommend this to everyone.  It is an uplifting book with an inspirational message.  It receives a 4.5 out of 5 star rating from me.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book:  Sand & Mistletoe

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre:  Contemporary Christian Romance (Holiday)

Release Date: November 24, 2018

Sand & MistletoeWhat’s Christmas without family drama, an accident, and mistletoe?

If you ask Portia Spears, it’s a horror movie—especially since she’s never the one caught under that mistletoe. And who thought it was a good idea to spend the last Christmas as a family unit away from their family home?

Her bossy older sisters, that’s who.

Christmas at his parents’ house with his son—just the way Reese Whitaker likes it. But a chance encounter on the beach might just change everything. How often do you meet someone who loves kids and knows American Sign Language?

Not often. Trust him.

However, with just two weeks to get to know each other and two families that couldn’t be more different vying for their time, will they even have a chance to test out that mistletoe they found?

Find out today in Sand & Mistletoe.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

ChautonaChautona 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

What Happens When an Author Rewrites History

To be fair, almost none of us wanted to be there.

And really, that wasn’t fair. Two of our daughters planned as a “destination Christmas” bash for the whole family—just a nice getaway in San Diego for the “last” Christmas we’d probably all be in the same place on the same days.  The kids were getting older, getting married, and even moving out of state. It was a beautiful thing for them to try to do for us.

But Havigs are homebodies who like their traditions, and most of us left in Ridgecrest weren’t too thrilled being “dragged” four hours south to celebrate Christmas in a beautiful house on a cliff overlooking the San Diego countryside.  It had everything, game room, lots of space, yards, hiking trails, an infinity pool, a hot tub…

Yeah. That hot tub kicked off the weekend with a splash all right.  With no lighting around it, and no railing either, my husband stepped out of it and right off the ledge—down a hill (at least fifteen feet), bouncing off boulders and thankfully, stopped by a fence. Otherwise, he’d have rolled for a LONG way.

Get this.  He broke nothing.  Don’t even ask me how (because we all know Who took care of that, right?).

Still, I spent my Christmas Eve sitting in an ER waiting for someone to tell us the damage (superficial scrapes and deep bruising). The whole time I thought, “This has got to be a book.”

Two years later, it was.

I say this at the end of the book, but I need to say it again.

People who know our family will recognize some of my kids (I left four of them out of the story).  They will also say, “Wait, she’s not like that!”

And that’s the point.  I put just enough of real people in it to really capture the feel of the personalities, meshed some quirks (including the ones that got left out), and then set them in a stressful situation and really way over-exaggerated actual responses.  I want to say this here again.  None of us acted just like I portrayed us in Sand & Mistletoe (although, frankly, I wouldn’t have blamed a couple of them if they’d wanted to). Unlike A Bird Died, I didn’t even try to stick to facts.

Instead of San Diego hill country, I put us at my favorite beach—Ventura. I stuck our rented beach house where the Pierpont Inn is/used to be (don’t even know if it exists anymore). Reese’s parents live in the house I lived in when I was nine—right there on Pierpont just a block from the beach.  And where they went to get mistletoe… one of my favorite places in the world.

So, here’s my version of the tale—the one I wrote instead of told.  Just like Francie Nolan learned from her teacher in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.  When I tell the story, I tell it exactly how it happened.  However… I wrote what should (not) have happened!  (this is much more interesting than the real story).

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 12

Emily Yager, October 12

The Book Chic Blog, October 12

Inklings and notions, October 13

Get Cozy Book Nook, October 13

For Him and My Family, October 14

Blogging With Carol, October 14

deb’s Book Review, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 16

Splashes of Joy, October 16

Labor Not in Vain, October 16

She Lives To Read, October 17

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 18

Mary Hake, October 18

Livin’ Lit, October 19

Artistic Nobody, October 19 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 20

Spoken from the Heart, October 20

Lots of Helpers, October 21

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

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 22

Batya’s Bits, October 22

As He Leads is joy, October 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 23

Simple Harvest Reads, October 24 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

SusanLovesBooks, October 24

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 25

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

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the prize package including a signed paperback & a handmade ornament!!

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/101f6/sand-mistletoe-celebration-tour-giveawa

 

Texas Holiday Hideout Celebrate Lit Book Tour

Texas Holiday Hideout by author Virginia Vaughan is a contemporary Christian mystery suspense adventure. It is the second book in her Cowboy Lawmen series. From page one readers are taken on a nonstop adventure.

This is the story of Melissa Morgan. She and her three year old son, Dylan, are forced into hiding from the person who murdered her mother. After her mother’s death, Melissa discovers a secret. She was raised in the Witness Protection Program (WITSEC). Finally the people her mother was testifying against had caught up with her and murdered her. Melissa saw the assassin and is his next target. 

U.S. Marshall Miles Avery the agent assigned with Melissa and Dylan’s care. from harm. It is harder than it seems as there is a mole in his organization. Miles opts to take them to his family ranch.

I really enjoyed this book. The author has a nice way of keeping readers on their toes. The characters are well written. They all were believable. It was easy to become invested in their lives. I enjoyed the conversations which were realistic.

Secrets, intrigue, and action abound in this thriller. There are lots of twists and turns to keep readers turning pages. Even though this is the second book in a series, it can easily be read as a stand alone.

I recommend this to lovers of mysteries, romance, and contemporary fiction. A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words. It receives a 4 star rating from me.

About the Book

Book:  Texas Holiday Hideout

Author: Virginia Vaughan

Genre:  Christian Romantic Suspense

Release Date: October 1, 2020

Texas Holiday Hideout Cover

When her identity’s exposed,

hiding on a lawman’s family ranch is her last hope.

After her mother is killed, Melissa Morgan’s shocked to learn she’s spent her life in witness protection. Now it’s US marshal Miles Avery’s job to keep her and her little boy safe. And with a mole in his agency, the only way to evade the killer is to hide Melissa on Miles’s family ranch…and pretend she’s his wife for the holidays.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

virginia-vaughan-HR-2

Virginia Vaughan is a multi-published author of inspirational romantic suspense. Blessed to come from a large, southern family, her fondest memories include listening to stories recounted by family and friends around the large dinner table. She was a lover of books even from a young age, devouring gothic romance novels and stories of romance, danger, and love. She soon started writing them herself. A former investigator for the State of Mississippi, Virginia utilizes her criminal justice background with her love of writing to transform words into powerful stories of romance and danger.

More from Virginia

What if one day you discovered you were in the Witness Protection Program and didn’t know it?

This is the premise for my October book, TEXAS HOLIDAY HIDEOUT, which releases this month. My heroine, Melissa Morgan, learns she and her mother entered the program when Melissa was a child. Her mother never told her and, when Melissa witnesses her mother being murdered, she becomes the assassin’s next target. US Marshal Miles Avery steps in to protect the single mom and her son from a killer, but a leak in WITSEC leaves him with little options except to take his witnesses to his family’s ranch…and pretend she’s his wife for the holidays.

So, in celebration of TEXAS HOLIDAY HIDEOUT releasing this month, here are 10 things about the Witness Protection Security Program (or WITSEC) I learned during my research for this book.

  1. The program is voluntary. No one can be forced to enter.
  2. You can leave the program at any time—although it is not recommended.
  3. No person in the program, who follows the rules, has ever been killed.
  4. People entering WITSEC sometimes keep their same first name and/or initials so that if they mess up and start to sign their name, they have time to correct.
  5. Since WITSEC is a federal program, many states have their own programs to protect witnesses of gang or street-level crimes.
  6. If you get married while in WITSEC, you must lie to your new spouse to protect your true identity in the event the relationship doesn’t last.
  7. Protected witnesses are mostly criminals. Only about 5% are innocents despite the popular trope in movies and fiction.
  8. Local law enforcement may or may not be notified when a protected witness is relocated to their jurisdiction.
  9. Divorced, non-custodial parents have had their children hidden from them and now must agree to allow their children to enter the program.
  10. WITSEC protected witnesses are expected to eventually become self-sufficient. They do not get to live off the government for the rest of their lives.

Did any of these facts about WITSEC surprise you? I’d love to hear which ones. I had a lot of fun researching WITSEC for TEXAS HOLIDAY HIDEOUT. I hope you enjoy Miles and Melissa’s story! Look out for the next book in the series—middle brother Navy SEAL Paul Avery’s story—coming in TEXAS TARGET STANDOFF in March of 2021.

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, October 8

Genesis 5020, October 8

Hallie Reads, October 8

Artistic Nobody, October 8 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Through the Lens of Scripture, October 9

Texas Book-aholic, October 9

reviewingbooksplusmore, October 9

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 10

deb’s Book Review, October 10

The Cafe Scholar, October 10

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

KarenSueHadley, October 11

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 11

Older & Smarter?, October 12

Inklings and notions, October 12

Simple Harvest Reads, October 12 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

She Lives To Read, October 13

Hebrews 12 Endurance, October 13

For Him and My Family, October 13

Betti Mace, October 14

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 14

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 14

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

Lighthouse Academy, October 15

To Everything There Is A Season, October 15

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 16

Blogging With Carol, October 16

Book Love, October 16 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Tell Tale Book Reviews, October 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 17

Batya’s Bits, October 17

Emily Yager, October 18

Labor Not in Vain, October 18

HookMeInABook, October 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 19

Mary Hake, October 19

Daysong Reflections, October 19

For the Love of Literature, October 20

Bigreadersite, October 20

EmpowerMoms, October 20

Blossoms and Blessings, October 21

Splashes of Joy, October 21

Pause for Tales, October 21

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Virginia is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of Texas Holiday Hideout!!

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/101f3/texas-holiday-hideout-celebration-tour-giveaway

Marry Me for Real, Cowboy Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

Marry Me for Real, Cowboy is Book One in the Cavanagh Cowboys Series by author Valerie Comer.  It is a Contemporary Christian Romance cowboy novel.  The book is not long and can easily be read in one evening.

This is the first book that I have read by author Comer.  She has a nice style of writing and storytelling.   Her characters were very believable.   I enjoyed the smooth dialogs.  They did not feel stiff or forced.  The descriptions were enough to place me in the setting but not bore me.  I became invested within the first few pages of the book.

Both main characters Adam and Riley were untrusting of the opposite sex.  A fake engagement worked perfectly for them.  A fake engagement did not work well for me as the subject for a Christian book due to the amount of lies and stories that were told.  Yes, there is a great lesson to be learned in telling the truth, but I expected something more.  This probably won’t bother most people.  

The story and writing were good.  The life lessons on family, conflict, and trusting God were great and should stick with readers.  The spiritual lessons were plentiful.  The romance was sweet.

I would recommend it to certain groups.  I rate it 4 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book:  Marry Me for Real, Cowboy

Author: Valerie Comer

Genre:  Christian Contemporary Romance

Release Date: September 8, 2020

Adam Cavanagh’s rodeo championship tastes like dirt after a competitor’s critical injury, but going home to his family’s Montana ranch isn’t much of an improvement. If not even the coveted trophy earns his stepfather’s respect, what will it take?

Riley Dunning’s quick thinking is all that’s keeping her body, soul, and principles together, but demanding a kiss from a hunky cowboy to deter the weirdo following her might be taking things too far… especially when the cowboy comes up with a risky plan that might offer them both stability. If it doesn’t backfire completely.

Will a fake engagement give Adam and Riley the leg up they each need, or will the cost to their hearts be too high? Because neither believes the other will want to marry them… for real.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

Valerie Comer is a USA Today bestselling author and a two-time Word Award winner. She writes engaging characters, strong communities, and deep faith into her green clean romances.

Valerie’s life on a small farm in western Canada provides the seed for stories of contemporary Christian romance. She only hopes her imaginary friends enjoy their happily-ever-afters as much as she does hers, shared with her husband, adult kids, and adorable granddaughters.

More from Valerie

Oh, cowboys…

Four years after I began publishing farm romances, I added my first cowboy romance series to the lineup. “It’s not that different,” I told myself and anyone who would listen. “Ranches are almost the same as farms. A few more horses, a few less random other animals!”

Ah, but cowboys are deemed more attractive than farmers! Maybe it’s their uniform. You know, a Stetson. Plaid snap-front shirts under denim jackets. Well-worn jeans. Cowboy boots. That combo looks better on a book cover than the stereotypical farmer in a straw hat, overalls, and rubber boots!

Whether focusing on cowboys, farmers, or gardeners, all of my green clean romances feature engaging characters, strong communities, and deep faith. Are the characters perfect Christians? Nope. No more than you and I are. There’s always room to grow.

In Marry Me for Real, Cowboy, the first story in my new Cavanagh Cowboys Romance, Adam decides a fiancée is just what he needs to impress his stepfather. Not that Adam wants to get married any time soon, but surely it won’t come to that! But… how long do you think it will take for him to realize that he’s living a lie and not trusting God to handle his future? What will his path be to resolve his lack of faith as well as move forward both in romance and in his relationship with his stepdad? You may have to read Marry Me for Real, Cowboy and find out!

— Valerie Comer

Blog Stops

Lighthouse academy, October 6

Fiction Full of Faith, October 6

Texas Book-aholic, October 7

deb’s Book Review, October 7

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 8

Genesis 5020, October 8

For Him and My Family, October 9

The Book Chic Blog, October 9

Inklings and notions, October 10

Joanne Markey, October 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 11

Simple Harvest Reads, October 11 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 12

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 13

Mypreciousbits, October 13

Artistic Nobody, October 14 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Vicky Sluiter, October 14

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 15

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 16

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 17

Blossoms and Blessings, October 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 18

Britt Reads Fiction, October 18

Splashes of Joy, October 19

Book Love, October 19 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Valerie is giving away the grand prize package of a complete paperback set of all six books in the Saddle Springs Romance series!!

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/101db/marry-me-for-real-cowboy-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Amish Menorah Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

The Amish Menorah is a collection of Christian Amish novella by men Amish authors or as the book calls them, The Men of Amish Fiction.  This is the first of its kind for me to read.  I have read many books with multiple female authors, but this is the first for all male.

Each story is as different as the various six authors.  Having a sampling of so many authors to read was a great way to determine which styles suited my taste. Stories told of an Amish man and the Jewish woman whose life he saves, about an Amish girl in love with an Englische man, two sisters both in love with the same man, a family whose child is injured in a fall, an Amish sheriff in a western town, and a girl forced to be Amish for the summer.

I enjoyed all of these Amish tales, but I did like some more than others.  Even reading a novella taught me some things and left me pondering some life lessons.  Each one of the stories had a faith and life lesson.

The stories were unique and well written.  Characters were well developed. I found myself easily invested in each story.  Reading them I was reminded why I am smitten with the Amish way of life.

I highly recommend this to Amish fans.  It is a nice way to find a new author.  I give it a combined, overall rating of 4 stars out of 5.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit, but this is my honest opinion.

About the Book

Book:  The Amish Menorahthumbnail_TheAmishMenorahandOtherStories_Medium

Author: The Men of Amish Fiction

Genre: Amish Fiction

Release Date: May 13, 2020

Come sit and enjoy!

Six short stories by the men of Amish fiction to entertain and educate you. You’ll journey with an Amish man and the Jewish woman whose life he saves, agonize with an Amish girl in love with an Englische man, fret with two sisters both in love with the same man, pray with the family whose child is injured in a fall, work with the Amish sheriff in a western town, and laugh at the girl forced to be Amish for the summer.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Authors

Will CarpenterTo know Wil, one would probably not think of him as an author. He is a husband, a father, a Christian, a veteran, a business owner, and a servant. He has led a life of bold and diverse experiences that immediately capture one’s attention.  Wil has an unexpected artistic and creative side—something that might be considered uncommon, given his life’s works. Wil’s greatest inner strength is his expression and creativity. His life’s works give a credit to his writing that few other fiction authors possess. This generates a vivid degree of realism above and beyond other works of fiction.

PCraigPhoto300dpiAmazon bestselling author Patrick E. Craig is a lifelong writer and musician who left a successful music career to become a pastor in 1986. In 2007 he retired to concentrate on writing and publishing fiction books. In 2013, Harvest House Publishers published his first Amish series, Apple Creek Dreams.  Patrick and his wife, Judy, live in Idaho. They have two daughters and Five grandchildren. Patrick is represented by the Steve Laube Agency

EicherCropped

Jerry Eicher was born to Amish parents, and raised in an Amish settlement in Honduras, Central America. The family returned stateside in the late seventies, when Jerry was sixteen. He spent his youth with a beloved Amish youth group in Belle Center, Ohio, and was married in 1983 to Tina Schmucker, whose parents had moved to the community from Nappanee, Indiana. Jerry and Tina left the Amish to join the Mennonites after the birth of their second son. He wrote his first work in the early twenties, a fictionalized version of his childhood in Central America. His second title was an Amish love story— Sarah. Since then Jerry has published over thirty fiction titles and sold nearly a million books.

Thomas & KarmaThomas Nye writes novels about Amish life, with a touch of romance, and a foundation of faith in Christ. He and his wife, Shari, live on her family farm where they raised five children. They have seven grandchildren and a team of draft horses. Thomas walks a mail route for the US Postal Service. It keeps him close to nature and a affords many quiet hours in which to dream up novels. “Over three decades of friendships with Amish neighbors has revealed a simple wisdom that inspires my writing.” To find out more about Thomas Nye and his books, visit: amishhorses.blogspot.com

Murray_Pura_400Murray Pura has over twenty-four novels to his credit and, in addition, has published dozens of short stories, novellas,,and poems along with numerous books of non-fiction. He has worked with Baker, Barbour, Zondervan, Harvest House, MillerWords, HarperCollins, Harlequin, Harper One and Elk Lake Publishing. His fiction has won or been short listed for a number of literary prizes. Pura has lived in the UK, the Middle East, the USA and Canada. He now makes his home in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta.

wyseAmos Wyse was born in the Midwest. Spending a great deal of his youth around good, hard-working farmers, those who lived near them and worked with them. When writing, he keeps those people and the life lessons they taught close by.

More from The Men of Amish

The Amish Menorah and Other Stories was born out of a happy meeting between Patrick E. Craig and Thomas Nye at an Amish writers and readers event put on by Connie Spradling Lynch in Shipshewana, Indiana in 2019. Most of these readers did not know that there were several men who wrote Amish fiction. So Patrick and Tom decided to do something about that. After the conference, invitations went out to Murray Pura, Willard Carpenter, Jerry Eicher and Amos Wyse. Deb Haggerty at Elk Lake Publishers signed on and The Amish Menorah came to be.

Patrick E. Craig

As always, the six of us male authors of Amish fiction, have the goal of writing interesting and inspiring stories about Amish life. Collectively, our purpose in putting together The Amish Menorah, was to offer a sampling of Amish novellas written by men. There are only a few of us guys and dozens of women writing Amish novels. This book is an opportunity for readers of Amish fiction to sample six of our writing styles in one setting.

The Biblical description of a Menorah is a seven-flame lampstand. We like to think of our six stories in the Amish Menorah as six flames, each shining a unique light on Amish life. Our prayer is that you, our readers, will become that seventh flame as you join us by reading The Amish Menorah.

Thomas Nye

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, October 5

CarpeDiem, October 5

Inklings and notions, October 6

Batya’s Bits, October 6

Connie’s History Classroom, October 7

Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 7 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

She Lives To Read, October 8

Maureen’s Musings, October 8

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 9

Older & Smarter?, October 10

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 10

Artistic Nobody, October 11 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Mary Hake, October 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 12

SusanLovesBooks, October 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 13

Captive Dreams Window, October 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 14

Simple Harvest Reads, October 14 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

For Him and My Family, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

deb’s Book Review, October 16

Bigreadersite, October 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 17

Blossoms and Blessings, October 17

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 18

Vicky Sluiter, October 18

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, The Men of Amish Fiction are giving away the grand prize package of copy of The Amish Menorah and Other Stories, a copy of Samson and Amish Delilah (by Thomas Nye), and an Amish coloring book designed for Amish children and sold in Amish stores!!

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/101d9/the-amish-menorah-celebration-tour-giveaway

Forsaken Island Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

Forsaken Island by author Sharon Hinck is a Christian Fantasy Romance novel.  It is Book Two in her Dancing Realms Series.   Book One is Hidden Current.

The author has written a fantastical story of a different world.  Using vivid descriptions and her talented pen, she takes readers away to it.  I was amazed and delighted.    It took me a little bit to become invested in the story because I had not read Book One.

After a bit I picked up on the people and land.  Their relationships were fabulous .  I loved the brilliant descriptions of things.  They made  me want to visit this place.

This is the tale of Carya and Brantley.  They live on the island of Meriel..  Their land is running out of supplies so when they notice another island floating nearby, they decide to look for food over there.  When they arrive on the other island crazy things happen.

This is a phenomenal story of good and evil, choices, redemption, and relationships.  It is beautifully written and has an encouraging message.  I really enjoyed the author’s style of writing and exceptional imagination.  This is like no other book I have read.

I recommend this book to anyone wanting to be entertained and inspired.  It has a beautiful message.  I would recommend reading Book One first.  This gets a five star rating from me.  I received a copy from Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.


About the Book 

Book: Forsaken Island

Author: Sharon Hinck

Genre: Christian Romantic Epic Fantasy

Release Date: September 15, 2020

Hinck - Forsaken IslandOn 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

Hinck2015 - Author PhotoAward-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.

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

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

Texas Trouble Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

Texas Trouble is a Christian historical romance by award winning Texas storyteller Caryl McAdoo.  McAdoo has written numerous Christian fictional tales with many of them being in Texas.  She has become an expert on both subjects and has done extensive and excellent research.  This is book five in the Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga Series.  It can be read as a stand alone.

This wonderful book is the story of best friends friends Josie Jo Worley and Cass Andrews.  Friend and brother, Aaron Van Zandt and Rich Worley, have gone to fight in the Civil War.  There is one major problem.  They are on opposite sides.  The women are concerned about each one.  

This is a tale of the emotional side of the war.  There are women left at home praying, keeping things going, and worrying. Things are happening that are suspicious.  Will the men come home?

I enjoy this author’s style of writing.  It is easy to ready and down to earth.  Her characters are relatable and realistic.  Each one is multi-layered and has flaws as well as good points.  By the end of the book, I felt like I had a new group of friends. I laughed and cried with them throughout the book.

I was invested in the story within the first few pages.   This book is full of history, twists & turns, romance, and lessons, both spiritual and life.  I love how the author always gives readers an inspirational message in each of her books.  I learn some history, too.  She writes about the Civil War realistically, but she doesn’t go into the bloody details.

I highly recommend this book.  There are many people will enjoy it. Christian Civil War, historical romance, and fiction readers will love it.  I believe this is the best book I have read by author McAdoo.  It was a page turner indeed!  I gladly give it five out of five stars.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

 

About the Book

Book: Texas Troubles

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: September 2, 2020

Brothers are for conflict; and he who finds a wife has found a good thing.

Through the first battle to the end of the Civil war, partners Aaron Van Zandt and Rich Worley fought on opposite sides. The women who loved them lived in prayer and learned to trust God even more to maintain sanity. While their men battled each other, best friends Josie Jo Worley and Cass Andrews struggle with jealousy, worry, and regret. Experience the war as one left behind in this epic romance. See how they cope . . . and if you’re able to stop turning the pages.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

 

About the Author

Award-winning author Caryl McAdoo prays her story brings God glory, and her best-selling stories—over fifty published—delight Christian readers around the world. The prolific writer also enjoys singing the new songs the Lord gives her; you may listen at YouTube. Sharing four children and nineteen grandsugars with Ron, her high-school-sweetheart-husband of over fifty years, she lives in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas. The McAdoos wait expectantly for God to open the next door.

 

 

More from Caryl

The families in the Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga have embedded themselves into my heart. This story takes them through the Civil War, and not everyone comes home to Texas. Josie Jo, born in book one of the series is ready to confess her love because he’s leaving . . . and she may never see him again.

Her best friend Cassandra shouts her love for the same man and her brother loves her friend! I love to see how God untangles our messes! He walks with them through every trial, all their pain, and the waiting, waiting, waiting for the end of the war, news of their beaus, and to be married.

The title TEXAS TROUBLES came from an incident that occurred in North Texas just prior to the Days of Aggression. In the scorching July heat, reported one hundred and ten degrees on that fateful day, three downtowns—Dallas, Denton a little to the north, and Pilot Point, more of a hamlet—went up in flames.

Immediately word spread that slaves and pro-union abolitionists were responsible, and justice came swiftly at the hands of the vigilante committee. Three slaves, one a preacher, hanged the following day on the banks of the Trinity River which then was nearest the land now known as Dealy Plaza, made famous by President Kennedy’s assignation there.

Though it proved to be an extraordinarily hot summer—water wells dried up and crops withered in the fields as the hundred-degree days went on and on. On the 8th of July, 1860, many residents of Dallas sought refuge at Wallace Peak’s downtown drugstore; that’s where the fire started.

Flames spread quickly from one business to another, blown by the hot winds from one to the next. By the time the fire was extinguished half of Dallas’ business district was gone. Now, phosphorous matches are said to be the culprit through spontaneous combustion for the fires as they all started in establishments carrying the highly flammable fire-lighting sticks.

Many say the incident called the Texas Troubles precipitated the Southern States’ cessation and even the Civil War itself. Mainly because of the FAKE NEWS spread by a young editor at the Dallas Herald. He sent letters to newspapers in Houston, Austin, and others across the state blaming a slave up rise for the fires and warning that the slaves were rising up.

Guess we aren’t the first Americans to deal with fake new! Before it was all over, at least a hundred men had hanged, slaves and their white abolitionist advocates. The panic never truly abated because too soon, the war between the states that pit brothers against brothers began.

This is where TEXAS TROUBLES, book five in the Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga begins. One brother went the way of the vigilantes, the other traveled north to join the Federalists. I think you’ll love this story of love and the most terrible times our country has ever experienced.

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 3

Inklings and notions, October 4

Betti Mace, October 5

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 6

Splashes of Joy, October 7

Pause for Tales, October 7

For Him and My Family, October 8

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 9

Connie’s History Classroom, October 10

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 11

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 11

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 12

Texas Book-aholic, October 13

lakesidelivingsite, October 14

Artistic Nobody, October 14 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

deb’s Book Review, October 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 16

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Caryl 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/101a1/texas-troubles-celebration-tour-giveaway

Phoebe’s Secret Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway


Phoebe’s Secret by author Sydney Tooman Betts is Book One in her Phoebe’s Mystery series.  This is a Christian historical fiction mystery set in the early mid-1800’s.  It deals with some tough issues, including slavery, from pre-civil war era.

Phoebe and her family are moving to the Shenandoah Valley.   Her father is a minister.  As they travel they hear about a murder which happens to be at a plantation in the area of her father’s new church.  Phoebe is inquisitive and friendly.  She wants to find out the details of this crime and in doing so finds even more.

The author did her research well in this historical novel.  It is a tough subject to read.  I hate slavery and what was done to human beings then.  This is a well written mystery that has some twists and turns that kept me guessing.  The characters were spot on for the South.  The dialog flowed smoothly.  I loved that the author had woven scriptural and timeless life lessons into this book.  She clearly states how wrong slavery is.

I would recommend this book to historical and mystery readers.  Don’t be put off by the slow start because it gets better.  I give it a 4 out of 5 star rating.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Phoebes secret

Book: Phoebe’s Secret

Author: Sydney Tooman Betts

Genre: Christian Fiction, Historical Mystery

Release Date: June 20, 2020

In April of 1843, Phoebe’s family hears about a murder while they are traveling to their new home in the Shenandoah Valley. They arrive to learn the victim attended the church her father has agreed to pastor and the crime took place on a leading church member’s plantation.

Eager to make new friends, Phoebe forms a unique relationship that propels her into the middle of the mystery, and she begins to question several acquaintances’ motives. Will she uncover their secrets before the plantation owner’s charming son discovers hers?

Click here to get your copy today!

About the Author

Sydney Betts

Sydney Tooman Betts resides with her husband near the extensive cavern system that inspired the setting for several chapters in her series The People of the Book.

While single, Ms. Betts (B.S. Bible/Missiology, M.Ed) took part in a variety of cross-cultural adventures in North and Central America. After marrying, she and her husband lived in Europe and the Middle East where he served in various mission-support capacities. Her teaching experiences span preschool to guest lecturing at the graduate level.

Before penning her first novel, A River too Deep, she ghost-wrote several stories for an adult literacy program.

More from Sydney

Proverbs 25:11 says, “Words spoken fitly are like apples of gold in settings of silver.” I was not a great reader as a child, but I loved stories. We remember stories, whether told through movies, good sermon illustrations, parables, or simple  novels.

Think of something you’ve read in the Bible. Did an instructional verse, a narrative, or a parable leap to mind? Stories have power because we can relate to them. We see ourselves in the shoes of the main character and ask what we might do in the situation. Mysteries, a new genre for me to write, are a little different. You are in the puzzle with the main character, working out the solution as you both come across the clues. I hope you will enjoy joining Phoebe in her first mystery as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Recipe:

Sally Lunn Bread

1 cup water
1 cup milk
¼ pound unsalted butter
8 cups of high-gluten or bread flour
⅔ cup sugar
2 tablespoons salt
¼ cup yeast
6 eggs

In a saucepan, combine water, milk and butter. Heat until the butter is very soft.

In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients with half the flour. Add the warm liquid, and mix well to form a smooth batter.

Add 3 eggs, one at a time, and mix well. Add another cup of the flour, and mix well. Add the second 3 eggs, one at a time. Add the remaining flour, and mix until the flour has been incorporated and the batter has formed a smooth ball. The dough should be less firm than bread and more firm than a batter.

Put the dough in a clear bowl with a little oil and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Proof until double in volume. Divide the dough between two bund pans or two loaf pans, or one of each. Proof again until risen and doubled in volume.  Bake at 350° for about 20 minutes. Makes 20 servings.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, September 29

deb’s Book Review, September 30

Inklings and notions, October 1

For the Love of Literature, October 2

Blogging With Carol, October 2

For Him and My Family, October 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, October 4

Mary Hake, October 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 5

Artistic Nobody, October 6 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Pause for Tales, October 6

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 7

Connie’s History Classroom, October 8

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

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 9

Splashes of Joy, October 10

Lighthouse Academy Blog, October 10 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Betti Mace, October 11

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 11

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 12

Maureen’s Musings, October 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sydney is giving away the grand prize package of $25 Amazon gift card and a softback copy of Phoebe’s Secret!!

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/10194/phoebe-s-secret-celebration-tour-giveaway