The Crow’s Call by Wanda Brunstetter

Best Selling author Wanda Brunstetter has written another fantastic page turning tale with her newest book, The Crow’s Call. This Amish story is different than the ones most often told by author Brunstetter. It is still a Christian Amish Romance but has a mystery to it.  I absolutely loved it and could not put it down!

This is the page turning story of the King family. It is so captivating that I was immediately invested in the story. The lives of the family members were very interesting. Each character possessed a unique personality that made them easy to befriend. All are believable and well thought. Even some of the characters from The Prayer Jar series show up in this new series. I enjoyed the new Englisch characters and the lessons they taught.

The story opens with tragedy and heartbreak. It then deals with the timeless issues of loss and dealing with a new normal. The author has offered so many life and faith lessons in this book. Her writing style is superb. There are surprises and twists as the tale unfolds.  The conversations are smooth and sound authentic.

I highly recommend this book. The mystery is intriguing, the romance sweet, and the Amish delightful. I loved the inspirational message woven throughout this 5 star book.  I am eagerly awaiting Book #2!  A copy was provided by the publisher but these are my honest words.

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  • Series: Amish Greenhouse Mysteries (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Shiloh Run Press (March 3, 2020)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1643520210
  • ISBN-13: 978-1643520216

 

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About the Author

 

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

Hannah’s Courage Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

My Thoughts:

I am fascinated by the Amish culture and lifestyle.  They have a love for family and trust in God that is strong.  Hard work is part of their lives as is good cooking.

Hannah’s Courage is a Christian historical Amish romance by author Molly Jebber.  It takes readers into the Amish world in the early 1900’s.  Set in Charm, Ohio this is part of The Amish Charm Bakery Series. It am be read as a stand-alone, but it would be better to read the earlier novels first.

This is the tale of Hannah.  She works at the bakery and tutors Aaron.  Timothy is Aaron’s older brother and has been in love with Hannah for along time.  Hannah has finally decided to declare her feelings to Timothy when a new girl comes to Charm and sweeps him off of his feet.

The author has incorporated many timeless life and inspirational lessons into this delightful story.  She has a lovely writing style that is easy to read.  A twist is thrown in to make the story interesting.  Her characters are realistic and well rounded.  The dialog flows without a hitch.  The setting was well researched and defined so that I could imagine everything.  I wanted to visit the bakery and chat with the three girls.

In the back after the story, readers are rewarded with recipes.  I was thrilled to be able to make some of the treats I had been reading about that sounded so scrumptious.  There is even a list of Amish words and their meanings, too.

I definitely recommend this book.  It would make a great reading group choice.  I received a copy from Celebrate Lit but these are my own true words.  I rated it a 4 out of 5 stars.

About the Book

Book:  Hannah’s Courage

Author: Molly Jebber

Genre:  Amish Historical Romance

Release Date: January 28, 2020

5-30-3019 Hannah's Courage FROM KensingtonA loaf of fragrant cinnamon bread for breakfast . . . a sweet and creamy custard pie for dessert. In 1912 Ohio, the Amish Charm Bakery has something to delight locals and visiting Englischer alike. And within this warm, welcoming community, there’s always room for love to grow . . .

Hannah Lapp’s life, like a long-cherished recipe, is satisfying just the way it is. She enjoys whipping up desserts at the bakery, tutoring local children, and socializing with dear friends. One of those friends, Timothy Barkman, has made his interest in Hannah clear, but she’s been in no hurry to change her circumstances.

No sooner does she feel ready to grow closer to hard-working, handsome Timothy than Hannah finds she may have waited too long. Charlene Shetler intends to become Timothy’s fraa. It’s little wonder he’s attracted to such a pretty, forthright young woman, but is the newcomer all that she seems? Only when Hannah is willing to confront some difficult truths can she move bravely toward a life of abiding faith and love . . .

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Molly JebberMolly Jebber’s Amish Historical Romance books have been featured on Publisher’s Weekly’s Best Ten Recommended Reads, in USA Today’s HEA, Romantic Times and many other media sites. She’s tours and speaks for Stonecroft Ministries – Women’s Christian Connection, and about Amish history/traditions, writing, marketing, publishing, and her books. She loves God, her family, and friends. She enjoys swimming, golf, reading, and says yes to butterscotch pie and parasailing, but no to coconut and skydiving! Visit http://www.mollyjebber.com for a complete list of her books and speaking events.

 

More from Molly

I related to Hannah in this book where I had to find the courage to make some hard decisions. Maybe you’ve had some hard choices to make and finding the courage to follow through has been difficult for you.

Have you had a bad day where nothing goes right? We’ve all had those. Hannah’s has many days like this, and she is torn about what to do from one problem to the next in her life. She makes some snap decisions, and faces life-altering challenges. You’ll laugh and want to stomp your feet at the twists and turns in this story.  She’s good at giving her friends advice, but has trouble following it. I can relate to this in my life at times. Maybe you can too.

The Sheriff and Dr. Harrison are still regular customers at the bakery where she whips up mouth-watering desserts. She and her friends cry, laugh, and offer each other advice. I love time with girlfriends, and Hannah’s no different. You’ll relate to her, root for her, want to reach in the book and shake her at times (I’m sure my friends have wanted to do this with me a time or two!), and wonder how what the future holds for her.

I hope you’ll follow my blog tour and enter for a chance to win the Grand Prize at the end of the tour. The more you enter, the more chances you have of winning!

Thank you so much for your support and encouragement. Your Facebook comments help me to get to know you better, and I appreciate it so much!

 

Here’s a recipe Hannah’s whipped up for you. And there are more in the back of Hannah’s story.

 

Cake

  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ¾ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoonsalt
  • 1 ¼ cups vegetable oil
  • 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cupbrown sugar
  • 3eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
  • 3large apples, peeled and cut into large pieced

Glaze

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • ¼ teaspoonvanilla

 

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease 9 x 13 pan with butter and coat with 2 tablespoons of flour
  2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Sift two additional times and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine oil and both sugars, and mix until well blended.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition. Add vanilla and mix again.
  5. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the batter and mix thoroughly. By hand, fold in apples and walnuts and mix until evenly combined.
  6. Spoon the batter into the prepared bundt pan. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Remove cake from the oven and allow to cool in the bundt pan for 20 minutes.
  8. While the cake is cooling, prepare the glaze. In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine all of the glaze ingredients. Bring to a boil and allow the mixture to boil for 1 minute.
  9. Remove the cake from the pan, onto a serving plate. Spoon the glaze over the warm cake.
  10. Cool for a little longer before serving.

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, January 30

Genesis 5020, January 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 31

Texas Book-aholic, January 31

Batya’s Bits, February 1

Quiet Quilter, February 1

She Lives to Read, February 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 2

Bigreadersite , February 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 3

For Him and My Family, February 4

deb’s Book Review, February 4

Inklings and notions, February 5

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 5

Pause for Tales, February 5

Older & Smarter?, February 6

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 6

Blossoms and Blessings, February 7

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

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 8

Christian Bookaholic, February 8

For the Love of Literature, February 9

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 9

SusanLovesBooks, February 10

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, February 10

Connie’s History Classroom, February 11

SPLASHES of Joy , February 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 12

Vicky Sluiter, February 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Molly is giving away a Molly Jebber grand prize collection that includes a handmade quilt and Amazon 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/f564/hannah-s-courage-celebration-tour-giveaway

The Amish Marriage Bargain Book Tour & Giveaway from Celebrate Lit

My Thoughts

The Amish Marriage Bargain by author Marie E. Bast is a Christian Amish Romance novel that will capture your attention and heart.  The story is original with twists, a mystery, drama, and romance.  Faith and inspiration is woven throughout this lovely book and tie everything together perfectly.

Author Bast has a pleasant writing style.  She knows how to shape characters so that they are believable.  The storyline was interesting and written well.  The pace was even and content drew me in.  Her description of the people and community took me there on an imaginary trip where I found new friends.

Since her sister died, May has taken over the care of her little niece.  Thad, her brother-in-law, was May’s former intended.  If you think that adds up to complications, don’t forget Thad’s mother who believes May can do nothing right.  The Bishop now wants May to marry Thad because of appearances.

There are so many levels to this novel.  It is entertaining, teaches lessons on faith, trust, grudges, forgiveness, gossip, love, and secrets.  The lessons are all timely and relevant to life today.

I wish this had cook with discussion questions for reading groups.  This has so many life lessons built into it that it would make a great selection.  My other wish is that it included a recipe or two.  I am spoiled by other Amish books including them.

I highly recommend this book.  It was thoroughly enjoyable and gave food for thought.  My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but these are my honest words.

About the Book

Book: The Amish Marriage Bargain

Author: Marie E. Bast

Genre: Amish

Release Date: December 17, 2019

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Will a baby girl bring them together at last?

She’ll do anything for her niece…Even marry the man who broke her heart.

Nothing can keep May Bender in her Amish hometown—except caring for her baby niece. But the bishop insists that May also marry her widowed brother-in-law, Thad Hochstedler—the beau who jilted her to wed her sister. Can May risk her heart long enough to learn the real reason for Thad’s first marriage…and possibly rediscover their love?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Marie Striped Sweater Enhanced12015 Pic2

Marie E. Bast is a Publishers Weekly bestselling author. Her stories whisper words of hope and healing through complex characters and twisting plots. She enjoys writing Amish, contemporary and historical stories. Married for twenty-eight years, Marie and her husband have two grown sons and one daughter. When she’s not writing, she’s walking, golfing, gardening or spending time with her family. Visit her website at MarieBastAuthor.com or follower her on social media.

 

More from Marie

Did you know that until as late as the twentieth century, marriage was never based on love?

In fact, the institution of marriage predates recorded history. But in ancient biblical times, the reasons for marriage are numerous. The kings, nobility, wealthy, and aristocratic families used arranged marriages to ensure loyalty between kingdoms, which forced a united bound and ensured the integrity of their inheritance and the family wealth.

Arranged marriages, marriages of convenience, and marriage bargains were practical to keep property and kingdoms intact and in the family line. But these marriage contracts also spilled over into the commoners’ lives. In times of poverty, a daughter was only another mouth to feed and therefore a burden on the family. That fueled the arranged marriages where the groom gave the family money, animals, or some other commodity in exchange for the marriage.

Also, arranged marriages were instrumental for women over the age of 30 who were unwed. Even in the nineteenth century, many women would find that a marriage of convenience was the way to go. Often, a widower needed a mother and housekeeper for his family, and sometimes a woman without means to support herself would readily accept a marriage of convenience. Even today, some cultures still use arranged marriages.

But one of the most unique marriage of convenience is the marriage bargain, and that is the central theme to my newest book, The Amish Marriage Bargain, which releases in book form December 17, 2019, and eBook January 1, 2020. The marriage bargain is the specific negotiation of the terms of the agreement regarding a particular situation and often included land.

After her sister dies, May Bender will do anything for her niece…Even marry the man who broke her heart. But like the days of old, the bargain goes deeper than that.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, January 2

For Him and My Family, January 2

The Avid Reader, January 3

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, January 3

Texas Book-aholic, January 4

Vicky Sluiter, January 4

Mary Hake, January 4

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, January 5

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 5

Among the Reads, January 6

Betti Mace, January 6

Older & Smarter?, January 7

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 7

Batya’s Bits, January 7

janicesbookreviews, January 8

Hallie Reads, January 8

For The Love Of Literature, January 9

Britt Reads Fiction, January 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 10

Bigreadersite, January 10

mypreciousbitsandmusings, January 10

She Lives to Read, January 11

Through the Fire Blogs, January 11

Quiet Quilter, January 12

Pause for Tales, January 12

Inklings and notions, January 13

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

Tell Tale Book Reviews, January 13

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 14

EmpowerMoms, January 14

Blossoms and Blessings, January 15

Splashes of Joy , January 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Marie is giving away to four winners each a $25 Amazon card will also receive a copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/f426/the-amish-marriage-bargain-celebration-tour-giveaway

Abraham Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway

My Thoughts

Author Jennifer Beckstrand has written Book Two in The Petersheim Brothers series.  Abraham is Christian Amish fiction with romance, humor, faith and even recipes.  It is a wonderful escape from everyday life to visit Amish friends.

I loved this book for so many reasons.  Faith is never hidden.  It is seamlessly woven throughout the story teaching lessons as it goes.  I find that beautiful in any novel.

Emma Wengerd is an Amish girl living at home that loves exotic chickens.  Abraham is the shy Petersheim brother.  He is tall, considerate, tender, quiet, but lacks confidence.  Alfie and Benji are the rambunctious eight year old twins determined to see their older brothers married.  When that is accomplished, the twins will be able to have a bedroom of their own instead of sleeping in the cellar.

All of the characters shine and come alive through the delightful writing of author Beckstrand.  Her style is captivating and grabs my attention immediately.  I was unable to put down this book until the end, which included recipes from the tale.  This is a well planned, organized, researched, and wonderfully written book.

When I read a novel, I love learning from it.  This book did not disappoint.  I learned some tidbits about the Amish.  There were details about the youth gatherings that I did not know.  Exotic chickens were new to me.  It was very interesting reading about the different types of chickens and their characteristics.

This book has everything to keep a reader’s attention and put a smile on a face.  There is humor from the boys’ antics and animals to enjoy with cats, a dog, cows, and chicken Many life lessons on family relations, manners, faith, gossip, forgiveness, truth, and obeying parents make this a book that encourages and inspires.  The recipes finishing this  book sound yummy and easy to make.

I highly recommend this book.  Even if you aren’t a fan of Amish, you will be able to enjoy this.  There is so much to learn in it.  It would make a perfect reading group choice.  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:  Abraham

Author: Jennifer Beckstrand

Genre: Inspirational Amish Romance

Release Date: November 26, 2019

Abraham coverThings at the Petersheim house are getting too crowded for eight-year-old twins Alfie and Benji. As if things weren’t bad enough with three older brothers hogging all the bacon at breakfast and using more than their fair share of toilet paper, Mammi and Dawdi Petersheim have to move in because of Dawdi’s stroke. If Alfie and Benji have any hope of getting their own bedrooms, they have to get rid of their annoying brothers, and the only way to convince their brothers to move out is to make each of them fall in love. What could be so hard about that?

Abraham Petersheim is known as a man of few words. He’s painfully shy and doesn’t see the need to prattle on like other boys in the community do. That’s why he can’t understand his unexpected attraction to Emma Wengerd. For sure and certain she’s pretty, but she also has five or six boys buzzing around her all the time, and she seems to be constantly annoyed with Abraham and his little brothers. Emma would never be interested in someone as boring as Abraham, and he could never set his sights on someone as wunderbarr as Emma.

 

Click here to get your copy.

 

About the Author

jennifer Beckstrand 1Jennifer Beckstrand is the two-time RITA-nominated, #1 Amazon bestselling Amish romance author of The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series, The Honeybee Sisters series, and The Petersheim Brothers series for Kensington Books. Huckleberry Summer and Home on Huckleberry Hill were both nominated for the coveted RITA® Award from Romance Writers of America. Jennifer has written twenty-one Amish romances, a historical Western, and the nonfiction book, Big Ideas. She and her husband have been married for thirty-five years, and she has six children and eight adorable grandchildren, whom she spoils rotten.

 

More from Jennifer

Alfie and Benji Petersheim will do just about anything to get their brother Abraham to fall in love with Emma Wengerd, even adopt a stray dog. But to catch that dog, they’re going to need Aunt Bitsy’ help. Alfie and Benji are about to get in a lot of trouble.

 

I hope you enjoy this excerpt from Abraham.

 

Benji pushed his coffee cake around his plate with his finger. “Maybe we could keep that stray dog.”

Maybe they could keep the dog. Alfie’s heart started pounding. A dog could find them if they ever got lost in the woods. A dog could fetch sticks and bring Dat his slippers. A dog would eat crumbs off the floor. Mamm would never have to mop again.

Bitsy shrugged. “That’s up to your mamm.”

Alfie’s heart sank to his toes. “Mamm would never let us have a dog. She won’t even let me have a goldfish.”

“I have a pet spider,” Benji said.

Alfie popped a small bite of coffee cake into his mouth. “He’s not your pet. He just lives in the corner of the cellar and kills other spiders.”

“You tried to spray him,” Benji said, “and I saved his life. He’s my pet now.”

Bitsy nodded. “Spiders are gute pets. They feed themselves and don’t poop on the carpet.”

Benji sat very still before wrinkling his forehead like he did when he was upset. “We need to help that dog.”

Alfie wanted a dog as much as anybody, but they had to be sensible. They’d been asking Mamm for a dog ever since they could talk. “Mamm won’t let us.”

Benji started crying. “But he’s going to get gassed.”

Bitsy reached over and patted Benji’s arm. “He might not get gassed. The pound might find a nice family that wants to adopt him. People like chocolate labs. I’m told they’re cute.”

Benji caught his breath and suddenly stopped crying, as if someone had turned off a faucet. “Do girls like chocolate lamps?”

“Chocolate labs?” Bitsy folded her arms. “Well, I’m a girl and I don’t think he’s cute, but most girls love dogs. Do you remember Vernon Schmucker? Poor fellow had a face like a potato, and the girls ignored him. One night he brought a puppy to the gathering, and he was surrounded by girls all night. That’s how he met his wife.”

Benji jumped from his chair and threw his arms around Alfie, making Alfie spill milk down his new shirt. “Hey. Watch it.”

“Alfie, girls like dogs!”

Benji was a good partner, but sometimes he made no sense. “So?”

“If Emma Wengerd saw us walking our chocolate lamp down the street, she’d run out of her house to pet him.”

Alfie’s heart started pounding. Benji was the best bruder in the world. “We could bring Abraham with us.”

Benji got more and more excited with each word. “And they could talk about dogs and chickens and maybe start kissing.”

Alfie set his milk on the table. “We’ve got to catch that dog.”

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, December 28

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 28

She Lives to Read, December 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, December 29

Older & Smarter?, December 30

Through the Fire Blogs, December 30

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, December 31

Jeanette’s Thoughts, December 31

For the Love of Literature, January 1

SPLASHES of Joy, January 1

Book of Ruth Ann, January 2

Mary Hake, January 2

janicesbookreviews, January 3

Vicky Sluiter, January 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 4

Pause for Tales, January 4

Quiet Quilter, January 5

Southern Gal Loves to Read, January 5

The Avid Reader, January 6

Christian Bookaholic, January 6

Inklings and notions, January 7

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 7

Blossoms and Blessings, January 8

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, January 8

Reading Is My SuperPower, January 9

For Him and My Family, January 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 10

Batya’s Bits, January 10

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving a $10 Amazon gift card to three winners!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/f383/abraham-celebration-tour-giveaway

Christmas, Cookies, and Memories

Christmas and cookies just seem to go together.  Kids of all ages love cookies.  Don’t you?  From the simple chocolate chip and peanut butter to fancier bonbons and cookie press spritz, a tray of cookies is always a welcomed delight at any home.

I remember making Christmas candy with both of my grandmothers but not cookies.  My mother and I made those along with treasured memories.  Mother is a wonderful cook and baker.  She is also a true Proverbs 31 woman even to this day.  I am blessed to have a Christian mother to teach me many things, especially about Jesus.

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One of our family’s favorite cookies is Spritz or Cookie Press Butter Cookies.  A hint of almond mixed with pure buttery goodness in small shapes of wreaths, Christmas trees, stars, and hearts give the kitchen a heavenly aroma when baking.  These are scrumptious any time of the year.  The best thing about them is the fun I have when making them with a loved one.

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Christmas memories don’t need to be about a gift you received.  Make sweet memories this year by making cookies for family and friends with your mother, daughter, sister, or friend.  Actually, that will be a gift in itself.  I still smile when I travel back in time to a little red brick house and am making cookies with my mother and little sister.   The smiles on faces of friends and family when we gave them a tin of homemade cookies warmed our souls.  Yes, the gift we gave became a gift returned to us.

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Need a cookbook for some great recipes?  Amish author Wanda Brunstetter has a Christmas cookbook that even has a recipe for these cookies:

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I love the Amish cookbooks.  If you are not familiar with Amish, they love to cook, bake, and eat!  Now that is a recipe for a great cookbook.  Get it at Amazon or wherever you normally buy books.

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