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Draw Me to Your Side Book Tour and Giveaway by Celebrate Lit

My Thoughts

Draw Me to Your Side is Book #4 in author Marguerite Martin Gray’s Revolutionary Faith Series.  This Christian Historical Romance is filled with history, adventure, romance, and faith.  I have not read the other three books in the series, but after reading this page turning delight, I certainly will.

Author Gray has a beautiful style of writing.  History was brought alive on the pages of her novel.  I was instantly invested in the story.  The characters are well rounded, relatable, and true to life.  Their conversations flow easily and sound authentic.  Gray has done her research well and it is evident in the details.  This is a well planned, organized, and extremely well done novel.

To begin with the cover is mesmerizing.  Elizabeth’s emotion is clearly captured on it and  vividly on the inside pages.  Set in Charles Town, South Carolina in the historic year 1776, the colonies and Britain are at war.  It is a time of great unrest and uncertainty.   Reading this book made me feel the conflict and trials that were happening.  My emotions paralleled Elizabeth’s as I felt her pain and questions.

There are so many issues the author tackles in her novel that are timeless.  We see family disputes, secrets, loyalty, hope, love, respect and disrespect, faith, and God woven throughout the pages beautifully.  It tells of the many sacrifices to break free and establish this country.  At times I teared up thinking how united they were and how divided we are now.

I definitely recommend this book.  Since it is book four you would benefit from reading the other three before picking up this one.  It is a captivating Christian historical romantic delight.  It receives a 4 out of 5 stars from me.  I received a copy from Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

 

About the Book

Book:  Draw Me To Your Side

Author: Marguerite Martin Gray

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: February 25, 2020

Draw Me to Your Side frontWarships in the harbor explode with battle cries for freedom in the hearts of Charles Town’s Patriots.

Charles Town, South Carolina, 1776—With the British war ships threatening his family and livelihood, Louis Lestarjette commits to aid Francis Marion, Christopher Gadsden, Silas Deane and other fiery Patriots with secret correspondences in code and in French. Although not convinced that the colonies can succeed in separation from Britain, he abides by his word—available with funds, his time, and if necessary, even his life.

Louis’ potential volatile role leaves Elizabeth Lestarjette uncertain of the future. Add to that her impending confinement, the secret missions her friends embark on, and the ever-encroaching danger into her domestic world, and the cost of independence grows steeper with each passing day. How will her family survive the coming turbulence?  How will she survive not being an active part of it?  One thing is certain, she must draw to God’s side or lose heart altogether.

Draw Me to Your Side… a prayer whispered against the coming destruction.

 

Click here to get your copy.

 

About the Author

Marguerite GrayMarguerite Martin Gray enjoys history especially when combined with fiction. An avid traveler and reader, she teaches Spanish and French and has degrees in Spanish, French, and Journalism from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. She received her MA in English from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas. Presently, she lives in north Louisiana with her husband and rescue cats.

 

More from Marguerite

I have always loved history, probably because my father took me to every historical site he could find on our travels. As I listened to him tell the story of our ancestors to a group of tourists at our Antebellum home, I suddenly realized that he was weaving tales about my own blood line. Very soon after that I flew to Charleston, South Carolina and began my research. From that first of many trips, my Revolutionary Faith Series arrived.

Draw Me to Your Side is Book Four of the series. The titles play a very significant role in the series, each having a dual meaning. The human element is obvious. Although the series is more historical than romance, the titles offer a glimpse into a potential romance. The other element is spiritual. God is the one who weaves his love and hope into their lives.

If you love book titles as I do, as you read this series, see if you can determine the dual meanings of Hold Me Close, Surround Me, Bring Me Near, and now Draw Me to Your Side.

Happy Reading!

Blog Stops

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 25

Bigreadersite, March 25

Blessed & Bookish, March 26

Older & Smarter?, March 27

Life, Love, Writing, March 27

Texas Book-aholic, March 28

Betti Mace, March 29

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, March 29

Inklings and notions, March 30

KarenSueHadley, March 31

For Him and My Family, April 1

Emily Yager, April 1

For the Love of Literature, April 2

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 3

deb’s Book Review, April 3

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 4

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 5

Pause for Tales, April 5

She Lives to Read, April 6

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, April 7

Back Porch Reads, April 7

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Marguerite is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 amazon card and a copy of the eBook!!

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/f664/draw-me-to-your-side-celebration-tour-giveaway

In the Garden Celebrate Lit Tour

My Thoughts

In the Garden, an Illustrated Guide to Plants of the Bible is a lovely reference book.  Beginning with the beautiful cover and continuing throughout the pages are full color illustrated pictures of the many plants from scripture.  I was mesmerized with them.

Plants and herbs of all types mentioned in the Bible are explained in appearance and use. That was extremely interesting. I love gardening, especially herbs.  Many times when reading scripture I have wondered how a certain plant looked or for what it was used.  This book would have answered those questions.  The authors offered some lessons on the plants.  This book spoke to the gardener in me, and I was awed at God’s creations.

Divided into four parts, there are Trees and Shrubs, Edible Plants, Medicinal and Aromatic Plants, and Flowers.   Each new listing begins with a scripture and the Latin, Hebrew, and Greek names of the plant.  Also included is how it relates to Biblical and modern use.

This is a very well researched book.  It was well organized and written so that it was easy to follow.  I had no trouble understanding it and enjoyed the material.  This is a reference book I will definitely keep on my shelf.

After the listing of trees, shrubs, bushes, and plants are growing tips as well as information about the Jewish calendar and growing seasons.  That growing season is different than ours and corresponds with their feasts.  That was new information for me.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  It taught me so much.  I would recommend this to any Bible scholar, gardener, or anyone interested in learning more about plants of all types.  It received a 5 star rating from me.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit.  These are my honest opinions.

About the Book

Book:  In The Garden

Author: Whitaker House Editorial

Genre:  Christian non-fiction, Biblical history, cultural, Biblical reference

Release Date: January 10, 2020

In The Garden CoverConsider not only the lilies of the field, but all the plants, trees, herbs, shrubs, and flowers that play a role in the biblical narrative through this illustrated guide. From the barley Ruth harvested to the hyssop David craved, from the frankincense the wise men brought to Jesus to the sycamore tree Zacchaeus climbed, the Bible is peppered with allusions to the plants that were a part of daily life in the ancient Near East and in New Testament Israel. With original illustrations, this beautiful gift book clarifies the biblical references to fifty plants and provides delightful new insights into the Word of God. Includes indexes to each plant and its corresponding Scripture references, a calendar of Jewish festivals and the growing seasons in Israel, and tips for growing your own biblically inspired garden.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

 

More from Whitaker House

Rather than being a dictionary of the plants mentioned in the Bible, In the Garden, with its original illustrations and plant descriptions, is meant to spark the reader’s spiritual imagination. It is our hope that these pages about the plants of the Bible will prompt your imagination and inform your study of the precious Word of the living God

Blog Stops

She Lives To Read, March 11

Texas Book-aholic, March 12

For the Love of Literature, March 13

For Him and My Family, March 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 15

deb’s Book Review, March 16

Mary Hake, March 17

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 18

CarpeDiem, March 19

Inklings and notions, March 20

Robin’s Nest, March 21

Tell Tale Book Reviews, March 22

Mamma Loves Books, March 23

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 24

Giveaway

To celebrate their tour, Whitaker House is giving away the grand prize package of a $20 Starbucks gift card and finished 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/f6fd/in-the-garden-celebration-tour-giveaway

One Little Lie Celebrate Lit Tour

My Thoughts

Award winning author, Colleen Coble has written another riveting, award worthy book with One Little Lie.  This contemporary Christian novel is a murder, mystery, suspense that caught my attention on the very first page.  I was invested in the story of Jane Hardy and turned page after page to read it.

Whenever I pick up a Colleen Coble book I am certain it is going to be a nail biting experience.  I was not disappointed with One Little Lie.  It was incredible.  This suspense, mystery had me on the edge of my seat flipping pages.  The story is brilliant and extremely realistic.  Yes, it could and probably has happened.  The depth of the characters and plot was phenomenal.  Do not expect a light read but something to engage your mind with this one.

This is Book One in The Pelican Harbor Series.  The Prologue was so captivating I sincerely hoped the entire store would continue from there.  Obviously it was only a bit of history, but it whet my appetite for the main course.

This is the story of Sheriff Jane Hardy.  She is a feisty petite law enforcement officer with a troublesome past.  Reid Bechtol is a famous newsperson that has come to do a documentary on small town police departments.  When dead bodies begin to show up he is there to offer his assistance to Jane.

The author has provided readers with twists, turns, and surprises to make this a book that is hard to put down.  Inspirational messages are woven throughout this engaging story along with multiple life lessons.

I highly recommend this 5 star novel.  It has discussion questions in the back so it will make a great reading group selection.  I received a copy from Celebrate Lit but these are my honest opinions.

About the Book

Book:  One Little Lie

Author: Colleen Coble

Genre:  Romantic Suspense

Release Date: March 3, 2020

one little lie

It started with one little lie. But Jane Hardy will do everything in her power to uncover the truth in this gripping new romantic suspense.

Jane Hardy is appointed interim sheriff in Pelican Harbor, Alabama, after her father retires, but there’s no time for an adjustment period. When her father is arrested for theft and then implicated in a recent murder, Jane quickly realizes she’s facing someone out to destroy the only family she has.

After escaping with her father from a cult fifteen years ago, Jane has searched relentlessly for her mother—who refused to leave—ever since. Could someone from that horrible past have found them?

Reid Bechtol is well-known for his documentaries, and his latest project involves covering Jane’s career. Jane has little interest in the attention, but the committee who appointed her loves the idea of the publicity.

Jane finds herself depending on Reid’s calm manner as he follows her around filming, and they begin working together to clear her father. But Reid has his own secrets from the past, and the gulf between them may be impossible to cross—especially once her father’s lie catches up with him.

 

Click here to get your copy.

 

 

About the Author

Colleen CobleBest-selling author Colleen Coble’s novels have won or finaled in awards ranging from the Best Books of Indiana, the ACFW Carol Award, the Romance Writers of America RITA, the Holt Medallion, the Daphne du Maurier, National Readers’ Choice, and the Booksellers Best. She has over 2 million books in print and writes romantic mysteries because she loves to see justice prevail. Colleen is CEO of American Christian Fiction Writers. She lives with her husband Dave in Indiana. You can visit her website at http://colleencoble.com.

Blog Stops

Back Porch Reads, March 10

Life of Literature, March 10

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 10

Texas Book-aholic, March 10

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, March 11

The Avid Reader, March 11

Lighthouse Academy, March 11

By The Book, March 12

Older & Smarter?, March 12

Through the Fire Blogs, March 12

Remembrancy, March 12

Betti Mace, March 13

April Hayman, Author, March 13

Emily Yager, March 13

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, March 14

Bigreadersite, March 14

deb’s Book Review, March 14

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 15

Inklings and notions, March 15

CarpeDiem, March 15

Christian Bookaholic, March 15

Just the Write Escape, March 16

For Him and My Family, March 16

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 16

Robin’s Nest, March 17

All-of-a-kind Mom, March 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, March 17

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, March 17

Stories By Gina, March 18

Janicesbookreviews, March 18

Mary Hake, March 18

Empowermoms, March 18

For the Love of Literature, March 19

Blossoms and Blessings, March 19

Because I said so – and other adventures in Parenting, March 19

Hallie Reads, March 19

A Baker’s Perspective, March 20

Quiet Quilter, March 20

Simple Harvest Reads, March 20 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Splashes of Joy, March 21

Moments, March 21

amandainpa, March 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 21

Pause for Tales, March 22

Britt Reads Fiction, March 22

Spoken from the Heart, March 22

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, March 22

To Everything There is a Season, March 23

Life love writing, March 23

Daysong Reflections, March 23

Lights in a Dark World, March 23

An Amish Picnic Celebrate Lit Tour

My Thoughts

Amish authors Amy Clipson, Kelly Irvin, Kathleen Fuller, and Vannetta Chapman have written novellas for An Amish Picnic.  This collection of four Christian Amish Romances is so sweet.  Each novella is a stand-alone and does not build upon any of the others.

Baskets of Sunshine, written by award winning author Amy Clipson, is the opening story.  It is fabulous and the perfect way to start this book.  This is the story of Phoebe Kurtz, Amish daughter of Freeman.  She assists her sister with her booth at the Amish Market and also helps at home.  She is a sweet yet feisty pretty teenager.  Kevin works for her father and is a couple of years older than Phoebe.  This beautiful tale shows that age difference in a relationship does not always matter.

Candlelight Sweethearts by Author Kelly Irvin is a cute story.  Esther Marie is a lovely Amish girl but has a stutter.  She works at Jasper’s family store and really likes him.  He notices her, too.  Showing that a speech impediment impacts person’s life, this tale is filled with faith, encouragement, and hope.

Author Kathleen Fuller offers Reeling In Love. Nina Stoll realizes that she is in love with her best friend, Ira Yoder.  They meet each week to go fishing.  Things become complicated when his cousin comes to visit.  Nina’s family coach her on what to do and the result is emotional and funny.  It is a tale of friendship turning into love and miscommunication.

Closing the book is author Vannetta Chapman’s Picnics and Prospects.  This is the tale of a Faith Troyer.  She suffers from claustrophobia and panic attacks.  David Lapp has a history with her.  Now he builds tiny houses and cabinets.  He wants to help Faith and make up for his past mistakes.  This is a story if healing, trust, forgiveness and redemption.

Each story in this Amish collection is encouraging, inspirational, and inspiring.  It gives a message of hope and healing.  I really enjoyed it.  Everyone will enjoy this sampling from four extremely talented authors.  All four stories and the collective book receive a 5 star rating.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my own honest words.

About the Book

Book:  An Amish Picnic

Author: Amy Clipston, Kelly Irvin, Kathleen Fuller, and Vannetta Chapman

Genre: Amish; Christian Romance

Release Date: March 3, 2020

From bestselling authors in the Amish genre come four sweet stories about picnics and romance.

Baskets of Sunshine by Amy Clipston

Kevin Weaver has lived with his brother’s family since his parents passed away when he was young, but he craves a home and family to call his own. Freeman Kurtz owns a successful brick mason business, and Kevin takes the job as Freeman’s apprentice to pursue his own financial freedom.

Phoebe Kurtz is helping her sister with her booth at the marketplace when she notices Kevin, her father’s employee. Their friendship grows, but Kevin is convinced that the difference in their ages makes a relationship between them impossible. Amidst summer outings, Kevin and Phoebe must decide if taking a chance on love is worth the risk.

Candlelight Sweethearts by Kelly Irvin

Esther Marie Shrock loves her job at Valley Grocery Store where she’s worked for four years. Despite a stutter that has plagued her since childhood, she thrives filling orders from a steady stream of customers. Still, at 25, she and her family wonder if romance is in her future.

Jasper Cotter isn’t good with people, but he’s found himself obligated to take over day-to-day operations of the family owned grocery store—a store he doesn’t have the first clue how to run. Thrown together, Esther Marie and Jasper don’t exactly see eye to eye. One night, the store loses power, and the candles aren’t the only things shooting off sparks. Esther Marie and Jasper are suddenly forced to discover common ground when it matters most, and they might be surprised with love along the way.

Reeling in Love by Kathleen Fuller

Nina Stoll and Ira Yoder are just friends. Just friends and fishing buddies. Every Saturday afternoon, they have a picnic at their favorite fishing hole and see who can out fish the other. Until Nina starts to wonder if there’s more.

Her plans to share her feelings go awry, and circumstances seem destined to keep Nina and Ira apart. With both Nina and Ira confused and hurting, it’s going to take courage, some help from the community matchmakers, and a little bit of divine intervention for Nina and Ira to realize they’re each other’s perfect catch.

Picnics and Prospects by Vannetta Chapman

Faith Troyer is claustrophobic, and David Lapp builds tiny houses. They went on a date years ago with disastrous results. Now that they’re in their late twenties, their families and friends are beginning to wonder if either will ever find that special someone. When a picnic outing is diverted by the discovery of a package of letters dating back to the 1970s, they take it upon themselves to find answers to a mystery that causes them to rethink their past and consider their future.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

 

Amy Clipston is the award-winning and bestselling author of the Kauffman Amish Bakery, Hearts of amy-clipstonLancaster Grand Hotel, Amish Heirloom, Amish Homestead, and Amish Marketplace series. Her novels have hit multiple bestseller lists including CBD, CBA, and ECPA. Amy holds a degree in communication from Virginia Wesleyan University and works full-time for the City of Charlotte, NC. Amy lives in North Carolina with her husband, two sons, and four spoiled rotten cats. Visit her online at AmyClipston.com; Facebook: AmyClipstonBooks; Twitter: @AmyClipston; Instagram: @amy_clipston.

kelly-irvinKelly Irvin is the bestselling author of the Every Amish Season and Amish of Bee County series. The Beekeeper’s Son received a starred review from Publishers Weekly, who called it a “beautifully woven masterpiece.” The two-time Carol Award finalist is a former newspaper reporter and retired public relations professional. Kelly lives in Texas with her husband, photographer Tim Irvin. They have two children, three grandchildren, and two cats. In her spare time, she likes to read books by her favorite authors. Visit her online at KellyIrvin.com; Instagram: kelly_irvin; Facebook: Kelly.Irvin.Author; Twitter: @Kelly_S_Irvin.

With over a million copies sold, Kathleen Fuller is the author of several bestselling novels, including the kathleen-fullerHearts of Middlefield novels, the Middlefield Family novels, the Amish of Birch Creek series, and the Amish Letters series as well as a middle-grade Amish series, the Mysteries of Middlefield. Visit her online at KathleenFuller.com; Instagram: kf_booksandhooks; Facebook: WriterKathleenFuller; Twitter: @TheKatJam.

Vannetta ChapmanVannetta Chapman writes inspirational fiction full of grace. She is the author of sixteen novels, including the Pebble Creek Amish series, The Shipshewana Amish Mystery series, and Anna’s Healing, a 2016 Christy Award finalist. Vannetta is a Carol award winner and has also received more than two dozen awards from Romance Writers of America chapter groups. She was a teacher for fifteen years and currently resides in the Texas hill country. Visit Vannetta online: VannettaChapman.com, Twitter: @VannettaChapman, Facebook: VannettaChapmanBooks.

 

Read an Excerpt

Read an excerpt here.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, March 6

Batya’s Bits, March 6

The Avid Reader, March 6

Older & Smarter?, March 7

For Him and My Family, March 7

For the Love of Literature, March 8

Bigreadersite, March 8

Texas Book-aholic, March 9

deb’s Book Review, March 9

Quiet Quilter, March 10

Through the Fire Blogs, March 10

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, March 11

Girls in White Dresses, March 11

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, March 11

Inklings and notions, March 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 12

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 13

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, March 13

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 14

The Collaborative Press, March 14

Splashes of Joy, March 15

janicesbookreviews, March 15

She Lives To Read, March 16

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 16

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, March 16

Blossoms and Blessings, March 17

Books, Life, and Chrst, March 17

Artistic Nobody, March 18 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Southern Gal Loves to Read, March 18

EmpowerMoms, March 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 19

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, March 19

His Unexpected Amish Twins Celebrate Lit Tour

My Thoughts

His Unexpected Amish Twins by author Rachel J Good is a delightful Amish Christian Romance.  This is book one in the author’s Unexpected Blessings Series, and it has started the series off with a fantastic book one.  I loved this sweet book that was filled with emotions.

This is the story of Hope Graber, a single Amish woman. She is driving home and happens upon an accident involving an Amish buggy.  Twin seven year old children are hurt, but their parents are immediately killed.  Hope comforts the children and even accompanies them to the hospital.

Micah Miller is their uncle and rushes in from out of town to care for them.  His parents are elderly and not up to travel.  By the time he arrives the twins have formed a bond with Hope.

It is a story of beauty from ashes.  The beginning is sad and heartbreaking.  I was immediately invested in the lives of the two little ones that had lost so much.  The book became a page turner.  I couldn’t put it down as I wanted to see what would happen next.

The author has a wonderful style of writing.  There were twists, turns, and surprises as I kept reading.  I learned things, road an emotional roller coaster, and cheered for the children.  This was a beautiful book that captured me and refused to let me go until the end.

I highly recommend this sweet story.  There are no group discussion questions in the back nor recipes.  In my opinion, both of those would have added to the book.  This can easily be read in one sitting if you put dinner in the crock pot that morning.  I rate it 5 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my own, honest words.

About the Book

Book:  His Unexpected Amish Twins

Author: Rachel J. Good

Genre:  Amish Romance

Release Date: February 28, 2020

When Micah Miller’s brother and sister-in-law are killed in a buggy accident, he’s devastated, but he fulfills a promise to raise their seven-year-old twins, Abby and Isaac. While struggling to deal with the twins’ grief and Abby’s anger toward God, he discovers an Amish farm offering horse therapy for grief. And he’s thrilled to find the owner cares about and prays for the twins.

Hope Graber had to find a way to save the family farm after her daed’s unwise decisions. Even selling off many of the horses didn’t cover all the bills. After deciding to use the remaining horses for animal therapy, she brings on Logan Russell, an experienced trainer, to help her. Together they not only start paying off the debts, but they also make positive changes in children’s lives.

Hope loves helping each child, but she takes a special interest in the twins and determines to help them heal both emotionally and spiritually. As she gently guides Abby back to God and makes the little girl smile again, Hope also makes Micah’s life brighter. As he emerges from his depression, he longs to make them one happy family, but only God can overcome the many obstacles in their path.

 

Click here for your copy!

 

 

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author RACHEL J. GOOD writes life-changing, heart-tugging novels of faith, hope, and forgiveness. She grew up near Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the setting for her Amish novels. Striving to be as authentic as possible, she spends time with her Amish friends, doing chores on their farm and attending family events.

Rachel is the author of several Amish series in print or forthcoming – the bestselling Love & Promises, Sisters & Friends, Unexpected Amish Blessings, Surprised by Love (2021), and two books in Hearts of Amish Country – as well as the Amish Quilts Coloring Books. In addition, she has stories in many anthologies, including Love’s Thankful Heart,Love’s Christmas Blessings,Plain Everyday Heroes, Love’s Truest Hope,and the forthcoming Amish Christmas Twins (Fall 2020) with Shelley Shepard Gray and Loree Lough.

 

More from Rachel

Phobias and Faith

 

“Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (John 14: 27b KJV)

In every book I write, I like the hero and heroine to experience character growth. I think it’s important that they change and become different. So, in His Unexpected Amish Twins, Micah faces several life-changing events. First, his life is turned upside-down when he becomes the guardian of his niece and nephew, seven-year-old twins. Although he loves the children dearly, as a young, single man, he isn’t quite ready to handle his lively, rebellious niece and his silent, withdrawn nephew, especially not when he’s grieving himself.

But with the help of horse therapist, Hope Graber, Micah puts aside his own pain to concentrate on caring for the twins. But Micah is also hiding a deep-seated phobia.

As a child, he had a terrible experience, one that scarred him for life. One that still haunts him and terrorizes him. One that may destroy his future relationship with Hope.

Getting over fear is never easy, and Micah prays for strength. But it isn’t until he’s forced to make a choice – give in to his fear or save a life – does he push past that fear.

Like Micah does, we often go through life hiding our fears. We make excuses not to do something that frightens us. When a fear turns into a phobia, it can become paralyzing.

For me, public speaking was my greatest fear. I managed to avoid it until I was asked to do a simple two-minute introduction each month for the Christian Women’s Club. I didn’t have to answer right away. They asked me to pray about it, and let them know my answer in a few days.

If they’d asked for an answer right away, I would have made an excuse. I had four small children and an ill husband. But the truth was – I was scared. Not just scared, but petrified. Petrified about even standing in front of an audience.

When I discussed this opportunity with my father, he suggested God might be giving me a chance to get over my fear because He had something greater for me to do in the future. My first thought was that it had better not have anything to do with public speaking.

Dad encouraged me to take a speech class, so I signed up for one. Eight people attended this informal course in the teacher’s living room. The first night we had to give a two-sentence introduction of ourselves. We didn’t even have to stand up.

I went last. My turn came, and my mind went blank. I couldn’t even remember my name. With prompting, the teacher got me to stumble through my name and hometown.

Our assignment for the following week was to prepare a three-minute demonstration of one of our hobbies. We could use notes and props. I mumbled through the speech, rushed out the door to my car, and vomited in the street. Yes, I was that frightened by public speaking.

I told my father I planned to quit the class, but he encouraged me to continue. And several months later, I stood in front of the women’s club. My eyes blurred, and I couldn’t see the people in front of me. I hurried through my memorized two-minute introduction clutching my note cards in case I forgot the words. I had no idea what I said, but several people mentioned that they liked it. And I went on to do it every month for two years.

And my father was right. God did train me for a future job. Wouldn’t Dad be surprised to know that, as an author, I speak in front of audiences around the country? He died before my first book was published, but I suspect he’s up in heaven cheering me on. And I could never have done it without God’s help.

Micah and I both had to learn to trust God’s promise: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1: 9 NIV)

Blog Stops

For the Love of Literature, March 4

Maureen’s Musings, March 5

The Avid Reader, March 5

Through the Lens of Scripture, March 6

Texas Book-aholic, March 7

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 7

For Him and My Family, March 8

janicesbookreviews, March 8

Inklings and notions, March 9

deb’s Book Review, March 9

Blossoms and Blessings, March 10

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 10

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 11

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, March 11

Vicky Sluiter, March 12

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, March 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 13

Splashes of Joy, March 14

Bigreadersite, March 14

Artistic Nobody, March 15 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Blogging With Carol, March 16

Genesis 5020, March 16

EmpowerMoms, March 17

My Devotional Thoughts, March 17

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of the book and $25 VISA 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/f72a/his-unexpected-amish-twins-celebration-tour-giveaway

Her Rebel Heart Celebrate Lit Tour

My Thoughts

Her Rebel Heart by author Sharlene MacLaren is a Christian Historical Romance set in West Virginia during the Civil War.  It is an extraordinary book written by a master wordsmith.  This is not a book to be missed.

Throughout the book the writing style is consistent and easy to read.  The story easily grabbed my attention.  From page one I was invested in this smooth flowing tale.  This page turner had surprises along with twists and turns that made it difficult to stop reading.  I loved every part of it.

This is the story of Cristina Stiles, mother of two.  Her husband is off fighting Union soldiers while she is left at home to care for their children and farm.  It is also the tale of Union officer, Jack Fuller.  He is a strong Christian and soldier.  Jack takes a message to Christina, and their story explodes off of the pages.  Author MacLaren is a professional when it comes to breathtaking love stories.

Author MacLaren reminds readers that she is an award winning author with this book.  The characters are multi-layered and realistic.  Even secondary characters were lovable and detestable. Some of the horrendous things that happened during the Civil War are mentioned without going into details.  Her novel is well researched and extremely well thought.  It is so well written it was not difficult to travel back in time to West Virginia and feel like part of the story.

For me, conversation in a book is a major part.  Dialog in Her Rebel Heart sounded authentic and flowed effortlessly.  It was plentiful which added to my reading enjoyment.  I could picture the characters talking.  “My faith’s prob’ly smaller than that,” Cristina said quietly.

There are many life lessons to be learned in this riveting book.   Trusting God, having faith, forgiving, and second chances are all common issues with today and the past.   Author MacLaren does a beautiful job with each one of them. Faith is in the forefront without being hidden in her book.  That is refreshing because not all Christian fiction books do that.  Sometimes the inspirational message of faith and God is covered or subdued.

I enjoyed reading about and experiencing Christina’s faith journey.  Many of the words brought a smile to my face as I read them.  “Hearing the prayer, brief though it was, filled Cristina with a wonderful sense of peace and awe.”

I highly recommend this sweet, clean Christian romance.  It is a lovely story that would be beautiful made into a movie.  This would make an excellent choice for a reader’s club.  There is so much to discuss.  At the back of the book are discussion questions to assist groups.  An author page is also included.  I happily rated this book a 5 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my own true words.

About the Book

Book:  Her Rebel Heart

Author: Sharlene MacLaren

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

The Rebel HeartCristina Stiles is left to fend for herself and her two young children while her husband goes off to fight in the Confederate army. She also has to deal with two rogue Yankee soldiers who’ve beaten her, stolen her food, and keep coming back to cause more trouble.

Jack Fuller is a God-fearing Christian fighting for the Union. During a surprise encounter, he shoots and kills a Rebel soldier. In his final breaths, the Rebel asks Jack to deliver a letter to his wife—and he agrees. But when he arrives at Cristina’s small farm in West Virginia, she assumes Jack is one of the Yankee trouble-makers, trains her rifle on him, and fires. As he lies on the ground bleeding, he explains the purpose of his visit, and out of a sense of obligation, she decides to nurse him back to health.

What will happen when Cristina discovers Jack is the one who made her a widow? Will her rebel heart forgive him—or finish him off?

 

Click here to get your copy.

 

About the Author

SharleneBorn and raised in west Michigan, Sharlene MacLaren attended Spring Arbor University. Upon graduating with an education degree in 1971, she taught second grade for two years, then accepted an invitation to travel internationally for a year with a singing ensemble. After traveling for a year, she returned to her teaching job, then in 1975, she reunited with her childhood sweetheart, and they married that very December. They have raised two lovely daughters, both of whom are now happily married and enjoying their own families. Retired in 2003 after thirty-one years of teaching, Shar loves to read, sing, travel, and spend time with her family—in particular, her adorable grandchildren!

Shar has always enjoyed writing, and her high school classmates eagerly read and passed around her short stories. In the early 2000s, Shar felt God’s call upon her heart to take her writing pleasures a step further, so in 2006, she signed a contract with Whitaker House for her first faith-based novel, Through Every Storm, thereby launching her professional writing career. With more than twenty published novels now gracing store shelves and being sold online, Shar gives God all the glory.

Shar’s novels have won numerous awards. Most recently, Their Daring Hearts was named a 2018 Top Pick by Romantic Times and her last book, A Love to Behold, was voted “Book of the Year” in 2019 by Interviews & Reviews.

Shar has done numerous countrywide book signings and has participated in several interviews on television and radio. She loves to speak for community organizations, libraries, church groups, and women’s conferences. In her church, she is active in women’s ministries, regularly facilitating Bible studies and other events. Shar and her husband, Cecil, live in Spring Lake, Michigan, with their beautiful white collie, Peyton.

 

More from Sharlene

Dark-haired, independent, and tough to the bone, Christina cares for her two young children in a ramshackle cabin in Ripley, West Virginia. When the Yankee who killed her husband pays her a visit, she has to decide whether to forgive him—or finish him off. Will this tough Southern woman find grace in her rebel heart?

Blog Stops

Inklings and notions, March 4

My Devotional Thoughts, March 4

Genesis 5020, March 5

Emily Yager, March 6

Texas Book-aholic, March 7

KarenSueHadley, March 7

Christian Bookaholic, March 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 9

Rebecca Tews, March 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 10

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, March 10

For the Love of Literature, March 11

For Him and My Family, March 12

deb’s Book Review, March 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 13

Betti Mace, March 14

Blossoms and Blessings, March 15

janicesbookreviews, March 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 16

Artistic Nobody, March 17 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Bigreadersite, March 17

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sharlene is giving away the grand prize package of a $20 Starbucks gift card and a finished 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/f6fc/her-rebel-heart-celebration-tour-giveaway

Yours, Mine, & Forever

My Thoughts

Yours, Mine & Forever by author Joanne Markey is a Contemporary Romance novel.  As I read it I had visions of a Hallmark movie. This book certainly has everything needed for a good one!

At first I was lost and floundered around trying to get my bearings in the story.  I did a little searching and found that Yours, Mine & Forever is Book 2 in the series by author Markey.  Once I finally put the pieces together, it was smooth and captivating story.  Book 1 is Dreaming of More and is on my list of books to read.

This is the tale of Norah, a sweet, kind-hearted woman wanting to adopt. She is very close to signing the adoption papers except someone does not want the adoption to happen. Norah will not allow anyone to stand in her way of making these special kids her own.    It seems the only way this will be able to happen is if she gets married.

There are such great characters in this book.  Each have unique personalities and are believable.  The author gives just enough detail without making the book boring.  My emotions ran up and down with Norah and the kids.  I really hope to watch this in a movie one day.

The author has included life and faith lessons in this book.  Lessons on loving others, forgiveness, making good choice, and turning to God for guidance.  Trusting and having faith in God is also included.

I highly recommend this book, but I believe you would benefit by reading book one first. This would make a great book club choice.  There is a lot to discuss in it.  I rate it a 4 out of 5.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book:  Yours, Mine, & Forever

Author: Joanne Markey

Genre:  Contemporary Romance

Release Date: September 7, 2019

Yours Mine and foreverWhoever said the course of true love never runs smooth knew their business.

Especially motherly love.

Still, with adoption success just waiting for ink and paper to appear, Norah can focus on more exciting things, like Christmas, and figuring out how this marriage thing is going to work out! However, never underestimate the craftiness of an antagonist old woman determined to get her own way—or rather, stop Norah from getting hers. If it means resorting to underhanded means to ensure she comes out on top, then so be it. All it takes is a word in the right ear, a nudge here, a wink there, and the natural course of gossip and slander will do the rest.

When the dust clears, Norah’s heart is in tatters and her fledgling relationship is in ruins… Or is it? Will her hero’s patience wear thin, and is Norah’s faith strong enough to see her through whatever comes her way?

 

Click here for your copy.

 

About the Author

Joanne MarkeyOriginally from Australia, Joanne now lives in Ohio with her husband and seven children where she spends her days writing, wrangling children, and trying to determine which phrases originated in which country because she uses them all interchangeably, thereby continually confusing herself as much as those around her.

 

More from Joanne

When people find out I’m an Aussie living in the US and that I’ve written books, they immediately assume my books are set in Australia. I’m sorry to disappoint anyone, but, no, they’re not. You see, after almost 19 years of living in the US I’ve lost touch with the culture I was raised in. Things are done differently here than they are over there, and I’ve gotten used to this life.
When I moved halfway around the world, iPads, smart phones, and the like weren’t even a thing. The internet over there (in the places I lived) was something you knew about, but not everyone was online. My family didn’t even own a computer. When you went to town you lost cell phone coverage about 20 kms out. We lived in the bush, which technically falls between the coast and the outback. Not far enough from the coast to be “outback”, but far enough there wasn’t a town worth mentioning in any direction for a good two hour drive (roughly 170km, if memory serves me correct). So yeah, we lived out bush and while it’s hard to imagine a world without the electronics we depend on so much today, the Australia I know, the life I remember, had none of them. And I’m pretty sure things have changed since then!
That’s one major issue standing between me and writing books set in Australia. Another is the language. Half the time I find it almost impossible to remember where a phrase originated. I’m not talking about the “fair dinkums” or the “g’days”, they’re easy to identify. Its the little phrases, the ones that are so ingrained in my thinking I can’t identify their origin. At least, not until every person in the room looks at me like I’ve lost my mind. I figure it out pretty quickly after that and usually have to scramble to translate to something they understand. Agreeing with someone by uttering a simple “yes” is a wee bit more effective here than the “too right!” I might use with my family.
Try adding in the whole dropping the R thing Aussies have a habit of doing, and then the clear pronunciation of the R which is pretty common among the people I know here…and yeah, it can get confusing. “Far” is a bad one. Simple word. I never stop to think about how I’m saying it, so part of the time I’ll drop the R without realizing I’ve done so. Then I’ll hear myself say “fah”, so I’ll quickly tack on the R… and it can become an issue.
Some expats might not have an issue with speech, this is just one problem I run into quite often so I ran with it in my book. Anyone who’s read the book will know who I’m talking about. Multiple languages, speech confusion especially when emotional. It’s a thing. Not everyone deals with it, but me… yeah. Sigh.
But that doesn’t mean I’ve turned my back on everything I once knew. My husband and our kids love a good damper, Aussie meat pies, and Vegemite. They turn their noses up at pavlova (where, oh, where did I go wrong?!), but little did I know when we bought some of my favorite Aussie music that it would become their favorite too. I love where I live now, but I also have a great fondness for the country I left behind, and my family too, of course. They all live over there. And this story… it originated in Australia.
I was looking for a something to write for NaNo in 2018 and my Mum had a dream to share, so she gave me the idea and I ran with it. I changed bits here and there—the setting, most of the story actually!—and finished it up mid-December of 2018. I sat on it for about six months, finally got around to sending it to an editor. And then two weeks before I hit publish, a friend heard how long it was and asked if I’d ever thought about splitting the story in two.
No, I hadn’t, but after hashing it out with my editor, we decided it was a good idea. Dreaming of More became the first half, and Yours, Mine, & Forever was born.
However, giving Dreaming an end meant I’d sort of wrapped up the main storyline I’d used in the entire 135,000 word manuscript. I needed something else because I hadn’t added the bow to the top of the package and without that, Dreaming kind of fell flat. It needed another book… So back to the editor I went and at 2am one morning we started brainstorming. Before I knew what was happening I was in the middle of rewriting the entire book. I didn’t need to follow the same storyline and because the slate had been cleared, I could add in whatever I wanted. So I did.
My friend apologized—she hadn’t meant for me to rewrite the entire book—but no apology was necessary. I loved being able to change things. New characters made it more fun and, as my youngest son would say, I got to add “all the stuffs”. The only thing I refused to change was the ending. I had to keep that because it was the one thing my Mum remembered the best from her dream. For her sake, I kept it. If you want to know what that ending is… it comes after all the other pages in the book. But if you skip over them, you’ll miss all the stuffs and they’re what make the ending worthwhile.

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Joanne is giving away the grand prize package of signed copies of Dreaming of More, Yours, Mine, & Forever, and Christmas Rose!!

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/f623/yours-mine