A Silken Thread by Kim Vogel Sawyer Book Review

My Thoughts

Author Kim Vogel Sawyer has written a poignant tale of life in Atlanta, Georgia during the 1890’s.  Filled with history, family, friends, and faith this is a beautiful story.  It captured my attention quickly and held it until the end.

In the beginning of the book, Laurel Millard is ambushed by her six siblings and told “Someone will need to care for Mama into her dotage, and we believe the right person is you.”  Not a care is given that this beautiful eighteen year old is in the stage of her life where she should be courting and thinking about a family of her own.

The characters, four main ones, are well described and come to life on the pages.  It is easy to become engaged with them and their lives.  The story has been well planned and researched.  Attention has been given to historical accuracy.  I learned about the 1895 Atlanta Cotton Exposition and silk weaving.  I love learning things from books I read for entertainment. The language, customs, and dress were all well done and took me to the time period and place of the novel.

It is important that a Christian novel has an inspirational message and makes mention of  God.  This book does not disappoint.  It clearly gives glory to God and discusses His direction for our lives.

This is a delightful book.  It is filled with issues that are current today such as loyalty, hope, marriage, family, friendship, romance, racism, and envy.  The romance is a bit light but sweet.  The story touched my heart and pulled on my emotions.

I highly recommend this amazing Christian historical fiction book.  It has Discussion Questions for in-depth and group study.  I gladly give it a 5 star rating.  A copy was provided by the publisher but these are my own honest thoughts.

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About the Book

Paperback, 352 pages

Published April 2nd 2019                       C2A0393B-9CD3-4518-BA5D-7A557DB2A69E

Waterbrook Press

For readers who love a heartwarming romance and a rich historical setting comes a tale of a young woman with a heavy burden, the International Cotton Exposition, and the pursuit of true love.

Eighteen-year-old Laurel Millard, youngest of seven children, is expected to stay home and “take care of Mama” by her older siblings, but Laurel has dreams of starting her own family. Operating a silk loom at the Atlanta Exposition will give her the chance to capture the heart of a man wealthy enough to take care of Laurel and any children she might bear, as well as her mother.

Langdon Rochester’s parents have given him an ultimatum: settle down with a wife or lose his family inheritance. At the Exposition, Langdon meets Laurel. Marrying her would satisfy his parents’s command, she would look lovely on his arm for social events, and in her besotted state, he believes she would overlook him continuing pursuing rowdy adventures with his unmarried buddies. Langdon decides to woo Laurel. Willie Sharp is not well-off and must take on an extra job at the Atlanta Exposition as a security guard. When mischief-makers cause trouble in the Women’s Building, Willie is put in charge of keeping the building secure. He enjoys visiting with Laurel, who seems like the little sister he never had, but his feelings for Laurel change to something much deeper. Can Willie convince Laurel that he can give her better life–even with so little to offer?

About the Author

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Award-winning, bestselling author Kim Vogel Sawyer told her kindergarten teacher that someday people would check out her book in the library. The little-girl dream came true in 2006 with the release of Waiting for Summer’s Return. Kim’s titles now exceed 1.5 million copies and are available in six different language. A former elementary school teacher, she now enjoys a full-time writing and speaking ministry. Kim’s passion lies in writing stories that point the reader to a deeper, more intimate relationship with God. When Kim isn’t writing, you’ll find her traveling with her retired military hubby, spoiling her granddarlings, petting the cats, quilting, or–as time allows–participating in community theater. You can learn more about Kim’s writing and speaking ministries at her website, KimVogelSawyer.com.

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“When You Are Near” by Tracie Peterson Book Tour & Giveaway

Today’s blog features Celebrate Lit’s Book Tour of Author Tracie Peterson’s “When You Are Near.”  This Christian historical romance is Book One in her new series “Brookstone Brides.”  As with all of the Celebrate Lit Book Tours, you have a chance to win a great prize or two.  Be sure to read all of the way to the bottom and enter.

My Thoughts on the Book

Within the first chapter I knew this was a Christian book so I was thrilled.  It is witnessed in their daily lives and not heavily preached.  This is a very different tale than any I have read and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I bet you would, also.

The author has an easy style of writing.  She doesn’t rush her story but lets it blossom as it unfolds.  The characters are engaging.  They are described in such a way that I wanted to be their friend. The storyline has been well planned and researched.  Attention is given to details and I was able to glean some things from this story.

This is the tale of Lizzy Brookstone, a female trick rider in a Wild West show.  Author Peterson vividly describes the action so it is easy to picture the riders and stunts.  There is even a female sharp shooter.  It is amazing the things these ladies can do.  Lizzie and her mother are grieving the death of Lizzie’s father.  My heart broke for them in some places.  I could feel their pain and loss.  Their emotions jumped from the pages straight into me.

As the story progresses we meet more characters with their own baggage.    Both men and women alike add to the story and will certainly return in Book Two.  It is a well rounded cast of lovable and not so lovable people.

This book contains something for everyone.  Danger, mystery, intrigue, romance, inspiration, and plenty of action.   It takes on love, death, faith, hope, friendship, family, justice and God’s protection.  I encountered a few twists and turns as well as some life lessons within the pages, too.  The characters range from an English gentleman to rowdy  wrangling cowboys.  

This is another page turning, don’t put me down book from talented booksmith Peterson.  She provided entertainment, education, and inspiration.  The only thing I missed was a discussion question section.  I highly recommend this beautifully written novel.  Anyone would adore it.  It earns a 5 out of 5 stars from me.  A copy was provided by by Celebrate Lit but I was under no obligation to write a review.  These are my own, honest word

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About the Book

When You Are Near

Book: When You Are Near

Author: Tracie Peterson

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: March 5, 2018

After her father’s death, Lizzy Brookstone, a trick rider in the all-female Brookstone Wild West Extravaganza, wants nothing more than to quit her role as the star of the show and live a quiet life on her family’s ranch. But returning home would bring Wesley DeShazer, the ranch’s foreman and the man who broke her heart, back into her life. In addition, the Brookstones’ new manager fears that Lizzy’s departure could doom the already cash-strapped show.

Hope grows in Lizzy during a stopover at Fleming Farm. Ella Fleming not only has a natural talent for trick riding and could easily replace Lizzy, but she’s eager to join the show to flee a forced betrothal. However, while there, one of the show’s wranglers is killed in a manner Lizzy finds suspicious. And during her escape from the farm, Ella stumbles across a secret that could affect all of their lives, as well as the future of the Brookstone Extravaganza.

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author

Peterson, TracieTracie Peterson (www.traciepeterson.com) is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than 100 novels. Tracie also teaches writing workshops at a variety of conferences on subjects such as inspirational romance and historical research. She and her family live in Montana.

Guest Post from Tracie

Introducing…When You Are Near!

I’m excited about the new Brookstone Brides series and had so much fun researching for the various characters and locations. This is a story about a fictional Wild West show with all female performers. Prior to the rodeos we see today, the Wild West shows traveled throughout America and Europe to entertain people and give city dwellers a taste of what the American frontier was like. At least their version.

Buffalo Bill Cody was famous for his shows, which brought Native Americans and their culture into the world of people who might otherwise never have even seen an “Indian.” Pawnee Bill was another entertainer who sought to keep these shows alive.

For the fictional show in my novels, I wanted to focus on three female characters who became a part of the Brookstone Wild West Extravaganza for varying reasons. Lizzy Brookstone is the heroine in book one, When You Are Near, and as the daughter of one of the show’s owners, she has enjoyed a starring role as a trick rider.

For research I went to Pueblo, Colorado to the ranch of Karen Vold, a famous trick rider and rodeo star. Linda Scholtz, a famed trick rider, was teaching a clinic there along with Karen at the Red Top Ranch Trickriding School.

These are two remarkable Christian trick riders who have long worked to keep the sport alive. I spent three days getting to know them and what they do and learned so much. And just to prove that we weren’t all work and no play, I thought I’d share my attempt at trick riding. What I won’t do for research!

The series will have three books, as usual, and each book will focus on a different lady and her skills. Mary is a trick shooter like Annie Oakley, and Ella is a Roman rider who stands on the backs of two horses for her part in the act. It was so interesting learning about each of these types of performers, and I hope you’ll get a chance to read all three and enjoy the stories of the Brookstone Wild West Extravaganza.

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, March 26

The Power of Words, March 26

Christian Author, J.E. Grace, March 26

Inklings and notions, March 26

The Meanderings of a bookworm, March 27

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, March 27

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, March 27

Vicky Sluiter, March 27

Carpe Diem, March 28

The Avid Reader, March 28

Genesis 5020, March 28

The Lit Addict, March 29

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 29

Back Porch Reads, March 29

Just the Write Escape, March 30

Splashes of Joy, March 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, March 30

Emily Yager, March 31

Daysong Reflections, March 31

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 31

Life of Literature, April 1

EmpowerMoms, April 1

For the Love of Literature, April 1

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, April 2

Through the Fire Blogs, April 2

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, April 2

For Him and My Family, April 3

Remembrancy, April 3

Inspiration Clothesline, April 3

Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, April 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 4

Pause for Tales, April 4

Older & Smarter?, April 5

Stories By Gina, April 5

Book by Book, April 5

Bigreadersite, April 6

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, April 6

Connect in Fiction, April 6

Godly Book Reviews, April 7

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 7

Texas Book-aholic, April 7

Blossoms and Blessings, April 8

janicesbookreviews, April 8

A Reader’s Brain, April 8

The Becca Files, April 8

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Tracie is giving away a grand prize of When You Are Near, Tracie’s A $25 Barnes and Noble Gift card, and the three books in The Heart of Alaska series and three other winners will receive a copy of When You Are Near!!

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/dcdd/when-you-are-near-celebration-tour-giveaway

Mending Fences Book Tour & Kindle Giveaway

Welcome to my stop on Celebrate Lit’s book tour for Author Suzanne Woods Fisher’s Mending Fences.  Today I have information on a delightful contemporary Amish novel by author Suzanne Woods Fisher.  She is extremely talented and her books never disappoint.  The giveaway for this book tour is big….Ms. Fisher is giving away an Amazon Kindle to one lucky reader.  Be sure to enter.

My Thoughts on Mending Fences

This modern day tale was fun, charming, extremely well written and held my interest through its entirety.  Author Fisher is an expert on the Amish and does her research well.    I felt like I was in Stoney Ridge and Windmill Farm.  I love her smooth style of writing.  Her stories are easy to understand and imagine.  There are twists, secrets, and mysteries to keep interest up, and characters are like old friends I want to sit down with and have kaffe (coffee).

My favorite thing about the book is that it is evident this is a Christian book without wondering or searching.  The next is that I gleaned information I did not know.  It is also a bonus to read for enjoyment and learn something.  After the story I was thrilled to find a section of discussion questions.

 

There is so much to love about this book, an engaging plot, a variety of believable characters, the detail given to Amish, and the life lessons it taught.  Relevant lessons lessons on trusting God, redemption, starting over, and forgiveness were woven throughout this powerful novel.

Would I recommend this book?  In a New York minute I would!  It is perfect for a book club.  It has much material to discuss.  I loved it and the characters.  Could not put it down to see what was going to happen, but did not want it to end.  Such a conundrum for a reader.

I rated it 5 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but I was under no obligation to write a positive review.

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About the Book

mending fences
Book: Mending Fences
Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher
Genre: Christian fiction, Amish, Mennonite
Release Date: February 5, 2019

Every saint has a past. Every sinner has a future.

Luke Schrock is a new and improved man after a stint in rehab, though everyone in Stoney Ridge only remembers the old Luke. They might have forgiven him, but nobody trusts him. He has been allowed to live at Windmill Farm under two conditions. First, he must make a sincere apology to each person he’s hurt. Second, he must ask each victim of mischief to describe the damage he caused.

Simple, Luke thinks. Offering apologies is easy. But discovering the lasting effects his careless actions have caused isn’t so simple. It’s gut-wrenching.

And his list keeps growing. Izzy Miller, beautiful and frustratingly aloof, also boards at Windmill Farm, and Luke’s clumsy efforts to befriend her only insult and annoy her. Eager to impress, Luke sets out to prove himself to her by locating her mother. When he does, her identity sends shock waves through Stoney Ridge.

“A funny, heartwarming story of friendship, love, and the possibility of happily ever after.”—Amy Clipston, bestselling author of Seat by the Hearth

“Suzanne Woods Fisher has written a sweet and poignant story you won’t want put down. Definitely a must read!”—Kathleen Fuller, bestselling author of the Amish of Birch Creek series

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author

Suzanne Woods Fisher, author of Mending Fences on tour with Celebrate Lit and featured on CarpeDiem.fyi

Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than two dozen novels, including the Nantucket Legacy, Amish Beginnings, The Bishop’s Family, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series. She is also the author of several nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Facebook @SuzanneWoodsFisherAuthor and Twitter @suzannewfisher.

More from Suzanne

A Friend in Need

Luke Schrock was nearly friendless. He returned to Stoney Ridge in Mending Fences after a stint in rehab only because his bishop, David Stoltzfus, strongly encouraged him. And everybody knows you didn’t say no to your bishop.

But nobody else in town wanted anything to do with Luke. They forgave him for the trouble he’d caused in his last downward spiral, the one that went too far. The one that even scared Luke. Forgiving him was the easy part. The Amish of Stoney Ridge were intentional forgivers. It was their trust—that’s what he would have to earn. Trust was a fragile thing. Once broken, it wasn’t easily mended.

Somehow, David was still able to look past the behavior to see the best of Luke Schrock. He didn’t stop there. He found a family who was willing to take Luke in, and he spent hours with him—at times as a mentor, at times as a father figure, but mostly as a friend.

A loyal friend can have a powerful impact. Consider those friends in the town of Capernaum, who carried their paralyzed friend to Jesus for healing—so determined to get to Him that they dragged his stretcher up onto a roof, broke through the roof tiles, and lowered him down. Can you imagine being in the crowd, listening to Jesus, as straw and tile pieces and branches and bugs started to drop down from the ceiling? A shocking display…of devoted friendship. And what a miraculous outcome for that paralyzed man!*

I won’t tell you how Luke’s story ends—only that he works hard to find ways to make amends to those he hurt, to regain trust. Especially the hard-to-earn trust of a brown-eyed beauty named Izzy.

Do you have a real friend like David Stoltzfus, who walks in when the rest of the world has walked out?

Or maybe the better question, for you, for me, is to ask ourselves if we are friends to others like David Stoltzfus was to Luke Schrock. I know I want to be.

*This miracle is reported in three gospels: Mark 2:1-12, Matthew 9:1-8, Luke 5:17-26.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, March 4

The Avid Reader, March 4

Quiet Quilter, March 5

CarpeDiem, March 5

Among the Reads, March 6

Girls in White Dresses, March 6

A Reader’s Brain, March 6

Blossoms and Blessings, March 7

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 7

Southern Gal Loves to Read, March 7

Bigreadersite, March 8

Blogging With Carol, March 8

Eat, Read, Teach, Blog, March 8

God’s Little Bookworm, March 9

Just the Write Escape, March 9

Splashes of Joy, March 10

EmpowerMoms, March 10

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, March 10

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, March 11

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 12

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

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 12

Vicky Sluiter, March 13

Random Thoughts From a Bookworm, March 13

Caffeinated Christian Raves – N – Reviews, March 14

Lighthouse Academy, March 14

Texas Book-aholic, March 14

For Him and My Family, March 15

Mary Hake, March 15

janicesbookreviews, March 15

Literary Reflections Book Blog, March 16

Pause for Tales, March 16

Inspiration Clothesline, March 16

Have A Wonderful Day, March 17

Hallie Reads, March 17

Inklings and notions, March 17

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, March 18

For The Love of Books, March 18

The Becca Files, March 18

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away a grand prize of an Amazon Kindle!!

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/de7d/mending-fences-celebration-tour-giveaway

“Mending Fences” is available in paperback:
  • Series: The Deacon’s Family (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (February 5, 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800735595
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800735593
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.5 inches
and in Kindle edition:
  • File Size: 10516 KB
  • Print Length: 330 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0800727517
  • Publisher: Revell (February 5, 2019)
  • Publication Date: February 5, 2019
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B07FH6XVF8

The Secret of Ink and Paper Book Tour and Giveaway

Welcome to my stop on Celebrate Lit’s Book Tour for “The Secret of Ink to Paper.”  You will receive information on the book, its author, my review, and be able to enter a giveaway.  Enjoy this post!

My thoughts

This is the first book I have read by author Lindsay Harrel.  I really enjoyed her style of writing.  Her book had a very nice story.  It was divided into different time periods and three separate stories that intertwined.  The writing immediately drew me in.  I loved Emily the most of the three ladies and felt like her confidant sharing secrets.  Her character was adorable yet haunting.  The other two came in a close second, so obviously I loved Ginny and Sophia, also.
The Author has some powerful messages in this enchanting story.  Suggesting journaling and writing to assist in healing was music to my ears.  I am a believer in journaling.  Making mention that bad things happen in life but God is always there for us rings true.  God takes our broken pieces and puts us back together.  Everyone needs to hear that.
Author Harrel has an enchanting writing style.  Her words were eloquent and I had no trouble following her story.  The descriptive nature of her writing picked me up and put me down in England.  Obviously the author had done research on the area and time period, too.  Language and descriptions were spot on.
The characters were lovable and approachable.  Each one was well rounded with distinct characteristics. Their story and lives were easy to become invested in and I wanted to give them advice at times.  The more I read, the more I felt like I had become the main character or characters.  I felt their happiness, heartbreak, fear, confusion, and doubt.
The author provides a puzzle that eventually comes together joining all three stories seamlessly.  The Christian inspiration is woven throughout the book unevenly.  At times it is a subtle whisper and others a loud voice.  The inconsistency bothered me.  Messages of hope, trusting God, healing and finding joy abound.
I would recommend this book to any woman.  The historical sections were more enjoyable to me because that is my preference.  The contemporary was great, too.  This would make a great small group book even lacking the consistent faith element.  It earns a 5 out of 5 stars from me.
A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but I was under no obligation to write a review.  These are my own, honest words.

6BF9E402-A121-4CEB-BA3E-E56AFBB7929B  Rating

About the Book

Title: The Secrets of Paper and Ink         102750E4-BA14-4FBC-B52A-8B4B98C2FB45

Author: Lindsay Harrel

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Release date: February 26, 2019

Publisher: Tyndale

Lindsay Harrel presents a powerful story of healing, forgiveness, and finding the courage to write your own story.

A year after the death of her abusive fiancé, domestic violence counselor Sophia Barrett finds returning to work too painful. She escapes to Cornwall, England—a place she’s learned to love through the words of her favorite author—and finds a place to stay with the requirement that she help out in the bookstore underneath the room she’s renting. Given her love of all things literary, it seems like the perfect place to find peace.

Ginny Rose is an American living in Cornwall, sure that if she saves the bookstore she co-owns with her husband then she can save her marriage as well. Fighting to keep the first place she feels like she belongs, she brainstorms with her brother-in-law, William, and Sophia to try to keep the charming bookstore afloat.

More than 150 years before, governess Emily Fairfax knew two things for certain: she wanted to be a published author, and she was in love with her childhood best friend. But he was a wealthy heir and well out of her league. Sophia discovers Emily’s journals, and she and William embark on a mission to find out more about this mysterious and determined woman, all the while getting closer to each other as they get closer to the truth.

The lives of the three women intertwine as each learns the power she has over the story of her life.

 

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the AuthorB1TqqyVuflS._US230_

Lindsay Harrel is a lifelong book nerd who lives in Arizona with her young family and two golden retrievers in serious need of training. She’s held a variety of writing and editing jobs over the years and now juggles stay-at-home mommyhood with writing novels. When she’s not writing or chasing after her children, Lindsay enjoys making a fool of herself at Zumba, curling up with anything by Jane Austen, and savoring sour candy one piece at a time. Connect with her at LindsayHarrel.com.

 

Guest Post from Lindsay

With every book I write, it seems God has something new to teach me. That certainly was true of The Secrets of Paper and Ink.

Lately, I am learning more and more about the power of our words. I’ve become more conscious of the words I speak over myself as well as what I say to other people. It’s more than “positive thinking”—the words we say ultimately contribute to the stories we weave, and I want my story to be as positive and hope-filled as possible, regardless of my circumstances.

I’ve also become much more aware of the lies that I tell myself—“you are not worthy, you are not enough, you will never achieve what you want to achieve”—and the need to replace those lies with the truths that God says about me. I have listened to Lauren Daigle’s song You Say on repeat lately, and it has become a theme not just of The Secrets of Paper and Ink, but one in the story of my very life.

So while I may not have experienced everything my characters have—I’ve never suffered emotional abuse, or been ostracized by my family, or been orphaned and alone in a world that seems against me at every turn—I have learned alongside them. I set out to write a book that would draw readers closer to the true healer and hope giver, and I ended up being drawn closer myself.

And that, to me, is the true power of story.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 26

The Avid Reader, February 26

The Power of Words, February 26

Carla Loves To Read, February 26

Blogging With Carol, February 27

Inspirationally Ever After, February 27

Kristin’s Book Reviews, February 27

Real World Bible Study, February 28

Caffeinated Christian Raves – N – Reviews, February 28

Carpe Diem, February 28

A Baker’s Perspective, March 1

Andy Carmichael, March 1

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, March 1

Bibliophile Reviews, March 2

The Becca Files, March 2

Just Your Average reviews, March 2

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, March 3

Emily Yager, March 3

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 3

Genesis 5020, March 4

Reader’s Cozy Corner, March 4

Stories By Gina, March 4

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 5

Simple Harvest Reads, March 5 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Mary Hake, March 5

Remembrancy, March 6

Through the Fire Blogs, March 6

Inklings and Notions, March 6

Just the Write Escape, March 7

Pause for Tales, March 7

Book by Book, March 7

Living Life Free in Christ, March 8

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

To Everything A Season, March 8

The Lit Addict, March 9

Texas Book-aholic, March 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 9

Tell Tale Book Reviews, March 10

Janices book reviews, March 10

Bigreadersite, March 10

Henry Happens, March 11

Godly Book Reviews, March 11

All-of-a-kind Mom, March 11

amandainpa , March 11

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Lindsay is giving away a copy of Lindsay’s first book The Heart Between Us!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

 

Ellie’s Redemption Book Tour & Giveaway

Greetings!  This is my stop on Celebrate Lit’s Book Tour for Ellie’s Redemption.  You will find my thoughts on the book, information about it and the author, an author post complete with a recipe, and a listing of all of the other tour stops.  You will want to visit those to get extra entries in the giveaway.  “To celebrate her tour, Molly is giving away a grand prize that includes an Amish doll, a handmade lap quilt (can be used as wall hanging), an Apple Pie recipe tea towel, a Blessings journal, a handmade quilted potholder, a $10 Amazon Card, Ellie’s Redemption Print Book, a mug, a 2019 Planner, pad and pen set, and a bookmark!”

My thoughts

”Ellie’s Redemption” is Book Two in author Molly Jebber’s Amish Charm Bakery Series.  If you haven’t read Book One you will be fine reading this as a stand alone.  This is a lovely tale set in Charm, Ohio in 1912.  The writing took me to the farms and shops of that quaint area within the first few pages.  I enjoyed the descriptions which were enough for me to visualize but not too much to become bored.

There is a wide array of characters in this historical Amish tale.  From mischievous young lads to cranky mothers secondary characters made this a fun book.  There were animals, too.  The main characters were well defined and rounded, complete with flaws. Some of the Amish were gossips, mean girls, brats, and no different from people in our world.  The author did a good job tackling relevant issues.

The writing style in this book was a pleasant, easy one.  At times it seemed the story was hurried, but for the most part it was well planned and organized.  I loved the bakery and goodies constantly described!

Another thing I loved were the life lessons and spiritual message.  This book speaks about forgiveness, second chances, grace, trusting God, redemption, and the power of the tongue.  It has a strong message against gossiping and for acceptance.  Bravo!

I recommend this book for Amish fiction lovers.  I would also recommend it to a teenage girl group.  The life lessons are timely and would provide for great discussions.  It gets a 4 out of 5 stars from me.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but I was under no obligation to write a review.  These are my own, honest opinions.

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About the Book

ellies Redemtion
Title: Ellie’s Redemption
Author: Molly Jebber
Genre: Christian fiction, Amish
Release date: January 29, 2019
1912, Charm, Ohio
Ellie Graber is determined to restore her bad reputation in Charm, Ohio. She regrets leaving Amish life and the danger and heartache she caused her family and friends. Ellie loves working with Liza, and her best friend and cousin, Hannah, at Liza’s Amish Charm Bakery, attends church, and obeys Amish law, but the gossip about her past life won’t stop. Joel Wenger’s deep blue eyes tell her he cares for her, but she suspects his parents have warned him to stay away from her. Joel wants to trust Ellie’s changed but his sister, Maryann, who left Amish life broke their hearts. Will Joel ignore his parents and friends, face their anger and ridicule, and give her a chance?

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

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Molly Jebber writes Amish Historical Romance. Her latest release, ELLIE’S REDEMPTION, is the second book in her Amish Charm Bakery Series. Molly’s books have been featured in Publisher’s Weekly, USA Today’s HEA, and Romantic Times. Her books have received widespread media attention throughout the US. Her books are sold in print and Ebook throughout the US and United Kingdom. She’s a touring speaker for Women’s Christian Connection, other women’s organizations, and she offers presentations on writing and the Amish. She says the most rewarding part about writing stories is meeting wonderful readers who become friends through social media and at her speaking events. Please visit her website: http://www.mollyjebber.com for a full list of her books (and options stores to buy them), speaking events and recipes.
She loves God, her family, and friends. She says yes to swimming, the beach, golf, and time with her family and friends, and no to coconut, onions, and skydiving!  

Guest Post from Molly

Hi Friends!
Ellie likes newcomer Joel, and he’s the first Amish man to show interest since her return to Charm. She’s afraid when he learns of her rebellious past and the danger she brought to her family before turning her life around, he’ll end their courtship. Joel is frustrated his sister left Amish life before his family moved to Charm. He chooses not to tell Ellie about her, until he has no choice. What does the future hold for Ellie and Joel when their secrets are revealed?
Along with the story of Ellie’s Redemption are recipes!
Here’s one just for you!
Ellie’s Surprise Cookies
1 cup shortening               2 cups rolled oats (quick cook)
1 cup white sugar             1 teaspoon soda
1 ¼ cup brown sugar       ½ teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon cinnamon     1 ½ cups chocolate chips
2 eggs                                  2 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder        1 teaspoon salt
Sift dry ingredients. Cream sugar and shortening. Add eggs and beat until fluffy. Stir in dry ingredients. Add oatmeal, vanilla and chocolate chips. Dough will be crumbly. Spoon a teaspoon of dough at a time on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Blog Stops

Quiet Quilter, January 29
Carpe Diem, January 29
Lighthouse Academy, January 30
Bigreadersite, February 2
Mary Hake, February 2
EmpowerMoms, February 3
Robin is Bookish, February 5
Texas Book-aholic, February 6
SusanLovesBooks, February 7
Henry Happens, February 9
Bibliophile Reviews, February 10
Vicky Sluiter, February 11

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Molly is giving away a grand prize that includes an Amish doll, a handmade lap quilt (can be used as wall hanging), an Apple Pie recipe tea towel, a Blessings journal, a handmade quilted potholder, a $10 Amazon Card, Ellie’s Redemption Print Book, a mug, a 2019 Planner, pad and pen set, and a bookmark!!
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/da8b/ellie-s-redemption-celebration-tour-giveaway

                     

Forever Loved, Eve’s Story Book Tour & Giveaway

 

 

Welcome to my stop on the Celebrate Lit’s Book Tour for “Forever Loved, Eve’s Story”.   You will learn about the book, the author, my thoughts on the book, get dates for the other stops, and have an opportunity to enter the $25 Amazon giveaway.  Who doesn’t need a $25 card?  Let’s start with my thoughts on this book.

My Review

Author Joanna May Chee has written “A Creative Retelling” of Eve’s story.  I am a fan of biblical fiction but don’t like it when they change the story to take too many liberties.  This book is so wonderful it would be hard not to like it.  It is a paperback that has less than one hundred forty pages, so it could be a quick read.  I savored it.

Opening the book is the author’s story.  She has a quaint style of writing that I found to be pleasant,  Sentences are short but meaningful.  I felt as if the author was being transparent and sharing herself.

The beginning of Eve’s chapters talking about this being a book about a Father and Daughter caught me off guard.  I always think of Eve being Adam’s wife and often forget she was the first daughter.  This was a lovely reminder.

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Eve’s chapters are only one or two pages long, but they are powerful.  The emotions felt real.  I smiled, I warmed, I was devastated, and I cried.  This is a thought provoking book for all women.

The last section is “Your Story”.  It includes a reflection, prayers and an invitation. This is a chance to accept Jesus or perhaps deepen your relationship with Abba.  After information about the author is a sample of the accompanying Devotional Bible Study.

I highly recommend this book to all women.  Get a group, read it by yourself, or grab your best friend, just read it!  You will be so glad.  This is a God glorifying book.  It will remind you that you are a beloved daughter of the true God.  Are you smiling now?  I am.  This earned a 5 star rating.  A copy was provided by Celebrate Lit but I was under no obligation to write a review.  These are my own honest thoughts.

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About the Book

Title: Forever Loved, Eve’s Story

Author: Joanna May Chee E6447DF2-9E05-4FDB-832B-A4914EDA9C33

Genre: Christian Inspiration for Women 

Release date: February 20, 2018

Publisher: Heartfelt Publications

Eve. First woman. The First to be tempted. First to sin.

But what if there were more to her story than that?

Forever Loved: Eve’s Story is the story of Father and daughter, as told by Eve. It is a story of preciousness and beauty, of tender love and grace. Through Eve, God reveals his Father heart of love for you, his treasured daughter. He whispers to you now, and calls you closer.

Includes:

  • My Story: The author’s personal story of encountering God as Father.
  • Eve’s Story: A beautifully creative retelling of the Bible story of Eve.
  • Your Story: Encouragement and prayers to take you deeper into God’s presence.

Experience Eve’s story anew. Discover just how loved you are!

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Author of Forever Loved Eve's Story Joanna May Chee gets excited about God! She loves to write and is often awake in the night with a million ideas for her next book or project. Joanna blogs at JoannaMayChee.coma and MumsKidsJesus.com, where it is her heart to encourage and equip women to love their families and meet with God. She is author of Forever Loved: Eve’s Story, a creative retelling of the Bible story of Eve, and a #1 Amazon UK bestseller. Joanna lives near London with her husband, 4 teens, dog and 2 cats! Facebook.com/JoannaMayChee Facebook.com/MumsKidsJesus | Pinterest.co.uk/https://mumskidsjesus.com/

Guest Post from Joanna

True or False? Eve spent time with God before meeting Adam.

True or False? Eve wasn’t called Eve until after the Fall.

Does the Bible even say?

Until recently, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you, even though I’ve been a Christian many years, and thought I knew the Bible story of Eve really well!

It was during hot, sticky, jet-lagged nights, about four years ago, on holiday overseas, that God started giving me new and wonderful insight into Eve’s life. Words literally started pouring through my head: the story of Eve, but not as I’d heard it before!

I’d always had negative connotations of Eve – the first woman to be tempted, the first to sin. But the story God revealed to me during my sleepless nights was one of preciousness and beauty. It was the story of Father and daughter, of God’s incredible love for Eve, and His equally wondrous love for me.

As Eve’s story unfolded over several nights, I wrote it down; and God gave me a book I did not ask for (but am forever grateful for): Forever Loved: Eve’s Story.

These new insights into Eve’s story have been life-changing. God has brought me deeper into His love than I could ever have imagined. (In the introduction of ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’ I share something of the deep hurt and insecurity I experienced growing up – including the time I got into BIG trouble with my teacher – my cry to know God as Father, and how God’s love has brought healing and freedom.)

It’s my prayer that ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’ touches the lives of women around the world, that women may come into deeper experience of God as Father, and know just how beautiful and precious they are to Him.

So, back to the True/False questions at the beginning of this post!

What do you think?

I’d love to share with you what I’ve discovered by giving you a free copy of a devotional I’ve written called ‘Treasures Hidden in the Story of Eve’.

This devotional explores some of the amazing truths God’s shown me about Eve, and the wonderful implications for us as women today (and includes extracts from ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’). Download the devotional for free here.

I pray God touches you as deeply as He has me, as you explore the Bible story of Eve afresh. May you encounter the love of Father God as never before.

Joanna xx

Forever Loved Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, January 26

Real World Bible Study, January 27

Aryn the Libraryan, January 28

Robin is Bookish, January 28

My Devotional Thoughts, January 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 29

Margaret Kazmierczak, January 30

All-of-a-kind Mom, January 31

Mary Hake, January 31

Godly Book Reviews, February 1

Lights in a Dark World, February 1

Midnight Bookaholic, February 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 2

Bibliophile Reviews, February 3

One Emergent Life, February 4

Pause for Tales, February 4

Texas Book-aholic, February 5

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 6

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 6

Janices book reviews, February 7

Carpe Diem, February 8

Forever Loved Giveaway

$25 Amazon gift card

To celebrate her tour, Joanna is giving away a grand prize of a signed copy of ‘Forever Loved: Eve’s Story’ plus $25 Amazon voucher!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops below for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d8d5/forever-loved-eve-s-story-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

The Essence of Humility Book Tour and Giveaway by Celebrate Lit

Welcome to my stop on the “Essence of Humility” Celebrate Lit Book Tour and Giveaway. I am glad you stopped by.  Be sure to register to win the giveaway.  Details are at the bottom of this post.  Let’s begin with my thoughts on the book.

My Review

Do you use essential oils?  I use some of them, but I had to cut back because of my dog and cat.  Some oils that I loved were bad for them.  There are still oils I use in different ways, and I believe in their ability to help.  I have read books on how to use them before but never a devotional.  That is until now.

I loved this book!  It is a perfect devotional for women that use essential oils or would like to start using them.  The author has written a delightful book giving information, uses, biblical background, trivia and stories on essential oils and plants.  Her book was well researched.  It was easy to see a lot of work had gone into this devotional.

Each chapter has four or five parts.  A Bible study combines facts about the essential oils or plants and what they symbolize, a Bible story mentioning the plant, scientific and trivia facts about the oils, sometimes a recipe, and then a fictional part are all included.  That is a lot!

The subject of humility is one that definitely needs explored.  In today’s society humility is not a common thing.  It was refreshing reading a book dedicated to that.  I loved the biblical references and examples.  They reminded me that I need to be more kind, loving, and more gracious.  Don’t we all?

This book can be read as an individual or group devotional.  I would recommend reading it once chapter and then letting the information soak in for a bit.  All throughout it I yearned for at least one partner to discuss it.  A group would benefit from doing this study.  It would be fun, too.  I found it to be relevant, engaging, and thought provoking.  Finding book three in this series is a wonderful surprise, but at times I was a bit lost on the people.  Now I want to read the first two books.

I learned so much from this book.  It was an enjoyable read for me.  I love essential oils and plants.  Books with scripture and biblical references are tops on my list, too.  This was a timely topic, also.  After reading the first two books, I will revisit this one.

I highly recommend this and give it 4 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided from Celebrate Lit but I was under no obligation to post a review.  These are my own, honest opinions.

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About the Book

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Title: The Essence of Humility  

Author: Lynn U. Watson

Genre: Devotional  

Release date: January, 2019

We live in a culture overwhelmed with disrespect, egos, entitlement, rudeness, and offense — lives focused on self, rather than God or others.  The Bible defines love in 1 Corinthians 13.  Every descriptive word included in the list whispers humility.

Patience — humility
Kindness — humility
Not rude — humility
Not arrogant — humility
Rejoices in truth — humility
No envious or boastful — humility
Not irritable — humility
Keeps no record of wrong — humility

Jesus entered our world and walked among us. He placed no importance on rank or position. Jesus life reflected love because it reflected humility, and He invites us to live and love like Him. Journey with our hostess, Cinnamah-Brosia and her friends at The Coffee Cottage. They lead us on a journey to meet real life people — our contemporaries and those on the pages of God’s word, who encountered the same real life challenges you and I face each day. Learn the blessings of a life lived like Jesus lived —- with love and humility.

Click HERE to purchase your copy!

 

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About the Author

Lynn Watson combines many years’ experience in women’s ministry, love of essential oils, and her passion for God’s word to bring her readers freshly inspired encouragement for their walk with Jesus. Her devotional, The Essence of Courage, was recognized as a ‘must read’ by regional publishing industry leaders. Married since 1973, Lynn and Steve have filled their Bartlett, Tennessee home with handmade treasures and lots of love for family, especially their five beautiful (of course) grandchildren. Aromas of freshly baked bread often fill Lynn’s kitchen. Jasmine, her tuxedo kitty, enjoys sleeping in Lynn’s lap while she writes.

Guest post from Lynn

My first lesson in humility for Volume 3 of Cinnamah-Brosia’s Inspirational Collection came from an assumption. Right. Those are never a grand idea. When God spoke to me about writing this book, he clearly gave me the subject: Love. I immediately headed to 1 Corinthians 13 – The Love Chapter of the Bible. Of course the book’s title would be The Essence of Love. The end material of The Essence of Joy announced the new “Love” title coming in 2018. And God laughed. I read 1 Corinthians 13 over and over again. It whispered “humility” over and over again. I called my dear friend – the one I consult with on every one of these books – and said, “You know what? Listen to this. Love is patient – humility. Love is kind – humility. Love is not arrogant – humility. You get the idea. Every single line of this beautiful passage comes down to the barest bones: humility.” We both laughed a little, too. And we thanked God He clarified His instructions. To live and love like Jesus requires us to humbly trust God and to humbly serve others. In Philippians 2, the Apostle Paul presents a lengthy discourse on the humility of Christ. It begins like this: If then there is any encouragement in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by thinking the same way, having the same love, sharing the same feelings, focusing on one goal. Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. Everyone should look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. ~Philippians 2:1-4 (HCSB) The title morphed to The Essence of Humility. I placed the focus on common everyday botanicals and plants – those familiar to us today – for this third volume in the collection. The fun came as I dug the plants from Scripture. I pray you enjoy the connections as much as I did uncovering them and connecting them to Jesus’ life, and to a whole list of characters who lived on the pages of the Bible, along with our contemporaries here in the 21st century. Thank you for choosing The Essence of Humility. So very many titles out there shout to be read. I am humbled for you to spend time with me here. I have prayed for every one of you. Copyright 2018, Lynn U. Watson

Blog Stops

Carpe Diem, January 24
Splashes of JoyJanuary 25
A Reader’s Brain, January 26
Creating Romance, January 29
Mary Hake, January 29
Aryn The LibraryanJanuary 30
Texas Book-aholic, January 30
Older & Smarter?, January 31
The Becca Files, February 1
Godly Book Reviews, February 1
Pause for Tales, February 2
Bigreadersite, February 6

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Lynn is giving away a grand prize of a wire basket that includes a hand-stamped “Gratitude, Kindness, Humility, Love” spoon necklace, Hillhouse Naturals fresh Linen hand lotion, locally hand-crafted Lavender-Eucalyptus body and foot scrub, embroidered “Love One Another” hand towel (nice ‘n soft), cozy Chamomile herbal tea, and a paperback copy of The Essence of Humility!!
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/d93b/the-essence-of-humility-celebration-tour-giveaway

A Love to Behold Celebrate Lit Book Tour & Giveaway

Welcome to my stop on Celebrate Lit’s Book Tour for Sharlene MacLaren’s “A Love to Behold.”  I’m glad you are here.  After reading about the book, author, and tour be sure to enter the giveaway for the $20 Starbucks card.

My Thoughts:

“A Love to Behold” by talented wordsmith Sharlene MacLaren is another one of her great works.  It is Book #3 in her Forever Freedom Series but can easily be read as a stand alone.  This is a historical Christian fiction with a powerful message of hope, love, diversity, acceptance, and faith.

Author MacLaren has done a fabulous job with this installment in her series.  I picked up some interesting historical information that I did not know.  I love it when a book teaches me something.  There is no light mention of faith in this book.  Prayer, scripture, God, and faith are in large portion and I did not need to search for them.  I love that in Christian books!

Her characters are realistic with vivid personalities.   Even the secondary characters are well defined.  The main character is a feisty, relatable young woman named Lydia.  As I read more I began to take on her feelings and emotions.   This book is well thought, well researched, well planned, and well written.  I was invested quickly and did not want to put it down.

The setting has been well researched and with her ability to describe people and places, the author whisked me away to post Civil War Charleston, Souch Carolina.   Dialogue between characters was smooth and one of my favorite things in the book.  The author used colloquialisms from that time period and part of the countrythat had me giggling.  Some I have actually heard but most I haven’t.

There is action, danger, romance, history, intrigue, and a powerful inspirational message in this novel  I would definitely recommend it.  Be prepared for some surprises and humor, too.  I loved it and gave it a 5 star rating.

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Celebrate Lit provided a copy but did not require a review.  These are my own honest words.

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SERIES: Forever Freedom #3
GENRE: Inspirational Historical Fiction
PUBLISHER: Whitaker House
RELEASE DATE: January 8, 2019
PAGES: 336

Two years after the Civil War, Lydia Albright, 27, is an established teacher in Boston when she senses God’s call to leave the comfort and security of her job and go south. She accepts a position to teach in a school for former slaves in Charleston, South Carolina. A church there that’s affiliated with the American Missionary Association offers support, along with room and board at the parsonage.

The Ku Klux men are hell-bent on seeing that the new school fails. Lydia’s life is threatened, and the parsonage, church, and school are vandalized.

But they haven’t contended with a strong, determined woman like Lydia before. It also helps that she has a couple potential suitors on her side.

A Love to Behold is a tale of people who grow strong in the face of adversity and a church that learns love, compassion, and acceptance, even in the face of cruelty and hatred.

Other Books In This Series

 

 

About the Author:

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Born and raised in west Michigan, Sharlene MacLaren attended Spring Arbor University. Upon graduating in 1971 with an education degree, she taught second grade for two years, then accepted an invitation to travel internationally with a singing ensemble for one year. In 1975, she came home, returned to her teaching job, and married her childhood sweetheart. Together, they raised two lovely daughters, both of whom are now happily married and enjoying families of their own. 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!

A Christian for over fifty years, and a lover of the English language, Shar always enjoyed dabbling in writing. She remembers well the short stories she wrote in high school, and watching them circulate from girl to girl during government and civics classes. “Psst,” someone would whisper from two rows over, always when the teacher’s back was turned, “pass me the next page.”

In the early 2000s, Shar felt God’s call upon her heart to take her writing pleasures a step further, and in 2006, she signed a contract for her first faith-based novel, Through Every Storm, thereby launching her writing career. With eighteen published novels now gracing store shelves and being sold online, she daily gives God all the glory. She dedicated her last novel, Their Daring Hearts, to Jesus.

Shar has done numerous countrywide book signings and made several television appearances and radio interviews. She loves speaking 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. She and her husband, Cecil, live in Spring Lake, Michigan, with their beautiful white collie, Peyton, and their ragdoll cat, Blue.

Shar loves hearing from her readers. If you wish to contact her as a potential speaker for a church function or would simply like to chat with her, please feel free to send her an e-mail at sharlenemaclaren@yahoo.com. She will do her best to answer in a timely manner. You may also find her on Facebook.

Guest Post from Sharlene

My dear readers,

It has indeed been my great privilege and pleasure to write this series set in Civil War times. What a thought-provoking, amazing, and heart-wrenching era in American history.

If you read all three books in the “Forever Freedom” series—Summer on Sunset Ridge, Their Daring Hearts, and A Love to Behold—you will have gotten some history lessons regarding the Religious Society of Friends, also known as Quakers; Abolition; the Underground Railroad, which the Quakers were instrumental in launching; life as a Union soldier in the Civil War; the Freedmen’s Bureau; and Reconstruction, that period following the war when the south had fallen into great dis-repair. Also prevalent in this third book is a bit of history regarding the origin of the Ku Klux Klan, a hate group that formed during the Reconstruction period.

Although I did not appreciate history as a young girl, as an older adult, I’m quite fascinated by it. History itself is a great teacher. Learning about it can be everything from exhilarating to depressing, challenging and yet exciting. It is my prayer that as you read my books, you’ll not only find them entertaining, but also inspiring and uplifting. I aim to encourage, not discourage. Much of history—if we dwell on it—can be disheartening, but focusing our hearts and minds on Christ gives us courage and confidence. Let us learn from history, but let us look to the future with hope in our hearts.

With love and a prayer for God’s best blessings,

Shar

Blog Stops

Reading Is My SuperPower, January 22

Maureen’s Musings, January 22

Jeanette’s Thoughts, January 23

Genesis 5020, January 23

Jennifer Sienes: Where Crisis and Christ Collide, January 24

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, January 24

Splashes of Joy, January 25

Blossoms and Blessings, January 25

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, January 26

Mary Hake, January 26

Godly Book Reviews, January 27

Daysong Reflections, January 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 28

Robin is Bookish, January 28

My Devotional Thoughts, January 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 29

The Becca Files, January 30

For the Love of Literature, January 30

Texas Book-aholic, January 31

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 31

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 1

Janices book reviews, February 1

A Baker’s Perspective, February 2

Bibliophile Reviews, February 3

Carpe Diem, February 4

Bigreadersite, February 4

Giveaway:

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To celebrate her tour, Sharlene is giving away a grand prize of a $20 Starbucks 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/d8d2/a-love-to-behold-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

 

Premeditated Serendipity Book Review & Giveaway Celebrate Lit Tour

It has been a long time since I have read a fiction book on Prophecy.  What about you?  In author Chautona Havig’s upcoming release Premeditated Serendipity, I found a delightful contemporary Christian romantic fiction that dealt with just that.  Prophecy.  I was thrilled.  Then I started reading the book and was mesmerized.  It grabbed my attention and drew me in quickly.

Author Havig has such a pleasant style of writing that reading one of her books is easy.  I was immediately caught up in the story and invested in the character’s’ lives.  They were well defined and relatable.  I found myself thinking Kelsey is so much like this friend or Uncle Mel is a real doll.   Conversations between everyone was smooth and natural.  It did not sound stiff.
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The author has used this book for an opportunity to discuss some topics we all face.  Forgiveness, being a busy-body, redemption, being hurt at church, faith, hope, trust, and love.  It had humor, sweet moments, and some other places that made me want to yell at the characters.  My emotions ran all over the place with the characters.
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This is a captivating novel.  Once started I did not want to put it down. I loved everything about it.  The writing, the storyline, the inspiration and encouragement, that it was a God glorifying, and the lovely characters.  Would I recommend this?  You betcha, I would!  Any woman would thoroughly enjoy this story.  It would make a great small group book, too.  You will want to discuss it with someone else.  Doesn’t that usually happen when you read a great book?  It does with me.  I rated it a 5 out of 5 stars.
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I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit but was under no obligation to review it.  These are my own, honest opinions and thoughts.
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About the Book

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Title: Premeditated Serendipity

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Christian romance

Release date: November 16, 2017

…make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you. ~ I Thessalonians 4:11

That’s all Reid wanted to do–just serve the Lord for a year before concerning himself with anything else. Yeah, the idea came from an odd “prophesy” one of the watchmen of Fairbury’s new Prayer Room spoke over him. Sure, he didn’t know if such “prophecies” were even Biblical–arguments on that score abounded. But since the words she spoke were pure Scripture, and since yielding to them couldn’t be wrong, he thought, “Why not?”

Was it always easy? No. People made judgments about him that weren’t accurate. Shy? Nope. Stuck up? Not hardly. Committed to a celibate life?

Good news, girls–just for the year.

But when the local florist hears Reid’s story and sees a few things that give him a glimpse into the man’s heart, he decides on a little premeditated serendipity to move things along, unaware of the serious havoc he’s about to wreak.

Premeditated Serendipity

Take a few Bible verses, stir in a little godly interference, give a pinch of meddling, and mix well. Bake in the oven of misunderstanding until true feelings rise and come out clean.

Part of the Out of the Blue Bouquet Collection

Click here to purchase your copy of the Out of the Blue Bouquet Collection

About the Author

39a3760d-495c-41cf-ba18-6812180f068c  Author of the Amazon bestselling Aggie and Past Forward series, Chautona Havig lives and writes in an oxymoron where she uses story to connect readers with the Master Storyteller.

Guest Post from Chautona

What Important Life Lesson Do Simple Daisies Teach Us?

It all began with a barrel of daisies. There I was, writing a simple scene with a character walking up the street of my fictional town of Fairbury, and this man appeared in front of a florist’s shop—The Pettler. He handed my character a daisy, and I soon learned that he did this for everyone—handed out a free daisy to anyone who passed.

6Since then, in almost any book that takes place in Fairbury, someone receives one of those daisies. So, when Amanda Tru told me about a collection featuring novellas about floral fiascoes, I knew it was time for Wayne Farrell of The Pettler to make a solid showing in a book.

I just wasn’t ready for it to be his story.

However, as I wrote about Reid and Kelsey, Wayne kept creeping in more and more. A backstory emerged. His faith bloomed. Yes, his heart has a few weeds that need to be pulled, but those weeds provided the conflict for this story.

And one thing that happened is he planted a seed in my own heart. I sat there thinking about what those daisies meant to him when the old “He loves me, he loves me not” ditty came to mind. I imagined that a florist would likely love or hate that. I mean, you don’t want people to have negative connotations with flowers, but on the other hand, people buying daisies to pluck… that’s good business.

Thinking of it in terms of Jesus changed everything, though. Suddenly, I had his story. Because, like Wayne shares with Reid in Premeditated Serendipity. When you pluck a daisy thinking of the Lord, there is no not. It’s just, “He loves me. He loves me. He loves me.” You can cross out every not. (I even have a short video on this.)

Because, as John 3:16 reminds us, “For God so love the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes on Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

He loves us. Period.

Note: for Wayne’s full story, check out Tangoed in Tinsel, part of the Under the Christmas Star set—the CrossRoads Collection 3.

Blog Stops

Real World Bible Study, January 5

Cultivating Us, January 6

Back Porch Reads, January 7

Aryn, the Libraryan, January 8

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 9

Texas Book-aholic, January 10

Abba’s Prayer Warrior PrincessJanuary 11

Bibliophile Reviews, January 12

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 13

Mary Hake, January 13

Janices book reviewsJanuary 14

Carpe Diem, January 15

A Baker’s Perspective, January 16

BigreadersiteJanuary 17

Multifarious, January 18

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize of a bouquet sent to anyone the winner wants in the U.S.!!

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/d8a5/premeditated-serendipity-celebration-tour-giveaway

Celebrate Lit Giveaway & Book Tour “The Three Faces of Nellie”

Were you a Little House on the Prairie Fan?  Me, too!  I loved watching the television show and imaging that way of life.  What did you think about the character Nellie Oleson?  She certainly wasn’t one of my favorites at the beginning.  However, she grew up and I remember her changing into a much nicer person.

In her book “The Three Faces of Nellie” author Robynne Elizabeth Miller enlightens readers on the real people whom Nellie was.  Interestingly, Nellie was a compilation of three different people and not an individual. Nellie Owens, Stella Gilbert and Genevieve Masters were the women that together made up Nellie.

This is a rather short book that will probably only interest fans of Little House.  It is very well researched and organized.  In fact, it reads a lot like a research paper or project.  References are cited, there is much data presented, and some speculation.  I am not sure what I was expecting, but this was a surprise.  It is more of a history lesson.

I would only recommend this to fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder and Little House on the Prairie.  It took me a bit to finish even though it was short.  I rate it a 3.5 out of 5 stars.  I was given a copy by Celebrate Lit but under no obligation to write a review.  This is my own, honest opinion.

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GENRE; Non-Fiction, Historical
PUBLISHER: Practical Pioneer Press
RELEASE DATE: November 26, 2016
PAGES: 142

Whether you love her, hate her, or love to hate her, Nellie Oleson is one of the most recognizable literary figures of the 20th century. But Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of the Little House on the Prairie series in which Nellie appears, had a secret. . .Nellie wasn’t a real person! Instead, she was a composite character created from three girls Laura knew in childhood: Nellie Owens, Genevieve Masters, and Estella Gilbert.

The Little House character of Nellie Oleson is one-dimensional: snobbish, selfish, and thoroughly unpleasant. But what about the real women behind Laura’s creation? They were an intriguing mix of the not-so-nice and the unexpectedly redeemable. In short, they were human.

Discovering the true stories behind Nellie, Genevieve, and Estella has been a fascinating journey. All three ended up on the West Coast at one point. . .true westward movement! One was widowed twice, one ended up divorced, and one died way too young. Two only had one child, and one had three, though she outlived her youngest by a very long time. There’s even some “Nellie-like” drama in there: Embezzlement. Lying on censuses. Shady land deals.

But there are some beautiful things, too. . .like the enduring love of a husband after his young wife died. Or the rare closeness of a mother and daughter who shared their lives as adults. Or the strength of a young widowed mother who not only cared for her son, but headed out west, in true pioneer fashion, while she did so.

Laura Ingalls Wilder did a masterful job of creating the character of Nellie Oleson. But the three real-life women behind that iconic character are, in my opinion, infinitely more intriguing.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

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Robynne Elizabeth Miller is a speaker, writing coach, and author of multiple books, articles, and essays. Her larger projects include From the Mouth of Ma, Pioneer Mixology, The Three Faces of Nellie, and Nonfiction, Memoir, or Fiction? Dissecting the Works of Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Robynne speaks nationally at writing and historical venues and teaches at writer’s workshops and conferences. She also serves as the Board President of Inspire Christian Writers, as well as their Director of Leadership, and leads two Northern California critique groups.

She holds an undergraduate degree in English Literature from Westmont College and a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction and Fiction from Ashland University.

She lives with her wonderful British husband and the youngest of their four cheeky children in the snowy woods of the Sierra Nevada mountains. When not writing, Robynne loves singing, felling trees, and making bacon from scratch.

From the Author

Nasty Nellie Oleson. One of the most iconic literary characters in literature. Whether you loved her … or hated her … or loved to hate her, she probably left a lasting impression on you. At least if you were a fan of the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder like I was growing up!

As a young girl, I loved Wilder’s tales of wagons, prairies, and grand westward adventures. Strangely, growing up didn’t change my love for all things Little House one tiny bit. But I did become deeply curious about the real life people behind some of the more fascinating Little House characters.

Namely, Nellie Oleson.

As I began to research Nellie, I learned a ton of interesting things. She wasn’t one person, for example. Laura Ingalls Wilder wove three girls she knew in childhood into one composite character for her books. One of the first “Nellie’s,” Nellie Owens, did have a brother named Willy, but did you know that he went blind from two separate incidents, one in childhood and one in adulthood? And did you know that all three of the “Nellies” ended up on the west coast at one point? Talk about true westward movement! One married a man who eventually went to prison for embezzlement, one did some shady land deals, and one shouldn’t have been a “Nellie” at all.

I suppose I was hoping for a good, old-fashioned redemption story. Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if the mean girl in Wilder’s stories grew up to work with orphans or rescue unwanted animals? Alas, that’s not exactly what happened. But the stories of these three women were fascinating all the same.

I hope you have as much fun discovering the real stories behind the famous Nellie Oleson as I did!

Blog Stops

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 6

Blogging With CarolDecember 6

multifarious, December 7

Carpe Diem, December 7

Bibliophile Reviews, December 8

The Morning Chapter, December 8

Just the Write Escape, December 9

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 9

A Reader’s BrainDecember 10

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, December 10

Maureen’s Musings, December 11

A Baker’s Perspective, December 11

Girls in White Dresses, December 12

Artistic Nobody, December 13

Connie;s HIstory ClassroomDecember 14

Jeanette’s Thoughts, December 14

Tell Tale Book Reviews, December 15

Pause for Tales, December 15

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, December 16

Texas Book-aholic, December 16

Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, December 17

Debbie’s Dusty DeliberationsDecember 17

Janices book reviews, December 18

margaret kazmierczak, December 18

Lots of Helpers, December 19

Bigreadersite, December 19

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Robynne is giving away a grand prize of a Little House Treasures basket that includes an authenticated piece of the original Loftus Store is De Smet, authenticated sand from Laura’s Plum Creek in Walnut Grove, a Loftus Store slate and slate pencil, chokecherry preserves from De Smet, a Christmas Tree ornament from De Smet, a corn-cob doll kit, a tin cup, maple syrup, a set of pioneer recipe books, Laura Ingalls Wilder’s actual gingerbread recipes, and other treasures from various Little House sites!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries in to the giveaway!

Click HERE to enter.