The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides Collection Book Tour & Giveaway

Glad to have you at my stop on the Celebrate Lit Book Tour for “The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides Collection.”  I hope you enjoy learning about this Christian Historical Romance Fiction collection of seven tales.  There is a generous giveaway to enter at the end.

My Thoughts

I love historical fiction, especially romance, so this book was a nice choice.  Lighthouses are intriguing to me.  They remind me of an old Christian hymn, too.  I love the thought of leading someone home using a light.  Sound familiar?

7C1BC695-B09D-43EB-AA5A-8D432CD8BD21

Most of the authors were ones I had read, but there were a few that were new to me.  I enjoyed all of the stories, but of course some were better than others.  The book starts in 1883 and each novella is a few years later until the last one is set in 1911.

Each author has done an exemplary job of researching and planning her story.  I enjoyed learning about the different people, times, and places, even immigrants.  It is obvious a lot of work was done in the organizing of this compilation of stories.

The faith message is woven throughout the book.  It teaches life lessons that are still relevant today.   Faith, trust, and hope as well as forgiveness are a few examples of lessons from this book.

I learned things, too, duties of a Lighthouse Keeper for one thing.  Some things were common sense that I just never considered.  Lightkeepers work night shift, sleeping in the day and being vigilant at night to keep others safe.

6FEAF979-350D-4219-ADF2-31C8A84F6EAE

This is a lovely Christian fiction collection.  Each author compliments the next one.  The tales are encouraging and delightful.  I would not hesitate to recommend this to lovers of historical romance.  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 words.

About the Book51ZdzdL75lL._SY346_

Title: The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides

Author: Kathy Rouser

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: November 1, 2018

Publisher: Barbour

Lighthouses have long been the symbol of salvation, warning sailors away from dangerous rocks and shallow waters.
Along the Great Lakes, America’s inland seas, lighthouses played a vital role in the growth of the nation. They shepherded settlers traveling by water to places that had no roads. These beacons of light required constant tending even in remote and often dangerous places. Brave men and women battled the elements and loneliness to keep the lights shining. Their sacrifice kept goods and immigrants moving. Seven romances set between 1883 and 1911 bring hope to these lonely keepers and love to weary hearts.

The Last Memory by Kathleen Rouser
1899—Mackinac Point Lighthouse
Natalie Brooks loses her past to amnesia, and Cal Waterson, the lighthouse keeper who rescues her, didn’t bargain on risking his heart—when her past might change everything.

 

Click here to purchase your copy.

 

About the AuthorKathleen Rouser headshot.larger file

Kathleen Rouser is the multi-published author of the 2017 Bookvana Award winner, Rumors and Promises, her first novel about the people of fictional Stone Creek, Michigan, and its sequel, Secrets and Wishes. She is a longtime member in good standing of American Christian Fiction Writers. She longs to create characters who resonate with readers who realize their need for the touch God’s grace and hope in their everyday lives. A former homeschool instructor, mild-mannered dental assistant, and current Community Bible Study kids’ teacher, she lives in Michigan with her hero and husband of thirty-some years, and the sassy tail-less cat who found a home in their empty nest. Connect with Kathleen on her website at kathleenrouser.com, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/kathleenerouser/, and on Twitter @KathleenRouser.

Guest Post from Kathy

When author Pegg Thomas approached me about writing a novella for The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides book proposal I couldn’t refuse the chance. After all, I am a lifelong resident of Michigan, which is the Great Lakes State! Plus, I had a favorite lighthouse in mind, though I briefly considered others.

For over 20 years we have ventured “up north” for a week-long summer vacation on Lake Michigan, most of them spent in the same cottage. Since the cottage is almost 20 miles west of Mackinaw City, I’ve made the annual pilgrimage to the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse since they reopened with exhibits in 2004. Part of the first floor has since been restored to the middle-class furnishings of 1910 when George Marshall and his family resided there. Two generations of Marshalls manned the lighthouse and George Marshall’s brother, Charles, was at one time the assistant lighthouse keeper.

There is also an area of the lighthouse where they display maps, photographs and other information, chronicling the history of the lighthouse built on the Straits of Mackinac in 1892. Fresnel lenses, like those used in the tower, and interactive displays are also included. Did you know for several years, the fourth-order Fresnel lens flashed a red light? I’d always pictured a yellow light! A tour guide, dressed in period clothing, such as a U.S. Lighthouse Service uniform, will take you up the tall, winding metal staircase to enjoy the view.

My many visits, whether they’ve included the long climb to the tower or not, have intrigued me. I’d often thought that someday I would like to write a fictional story about this lighthouse. Built with Cream City brick, in a Norman architectural style, the building reminds me of a castle. Perhaps that’s why I chose to have the lighthouse keeper hero, Cal Waterson, rescue Natalie Brooks, a lone shipwreck survivor. She is the proverbial damsel in distress. Yet, despite her amnesia she finds a new strength in her faith to face an unknown future and in a sense rescues Cal and his daughter.

Returning to the lighthouse last year, I did climb to the tower to examine the view my characters might have had. Of course, I had to imagine what it would have been like without the Mackinac Bridge, which has joined our upper and lower peninsulas since 1957. It’s a spectacular view, where you can also see Mackinac Island, home of the famous Grand Hotel, which was already there in 1899, when my story takes place.

Not only do lighthouses spark so many ideas of history and romance, they are so symbolic— as guiding lights—and beacons of hope to lead through treacherous waters, much like our Savior, Jesus Christ, is the true Light who leads us to the Father. Indeed, Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse played a strategic part in guiding ships through the dangers of the straits. I look forward to visiting this beautiful historic landmark again and hope my readers will be drawn into an intriguing visit to the lighthouse through my story, The Last Memory.

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, February 21

The Power of Words, February 21

Godly Book Reviews, February 22

Simple Harvest Reads, February 22 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)

Bibliophile Reviews, February 23

For the Love of Literature, February 23

Just the Write Escape, February 24

Carla Loves To Read, February 24

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 25

Book by Book, February 25

Jennifer Sienes: Where Crisis and Christ Collide, February 26

EmpowerMoms, February 26

Back Porch Reads, February 27

Through the Fire Blogs, February 27

Blossoms and Blessings, February 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 28

Mary Hake, February 28

Christian Author, J.E. Grace, March 1

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, March 1

Connie’s History Classroom, March 2

Blogging With Carol, March 2

Texas Book-aholic, March 3

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, March 3

KarenSueHadley, March 4

Janices book reviews, March 4

Carpe Diem, March 5

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 5

A Baker’s Perspective, March 6

Bigreadersite, March 6

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kathy is giving away a grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card, a signed copy of The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides Collection, a sterling silver charm of the Old Mackinac Point Lighthouse, and a souvenir pictorial book of some of the Great Lakes lighthouse!!

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/db9a/the-great-lakes-lighthouse-brides-collection-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

 

Must Read Monday: The Fashion Designer by Nancy Moser

     The Fashion Designer by author Nancy Moser is Book Two following The Pattern Artist. Even though it is a sequel it could be read as a stand alone because the author provides enough information about prior events to allow readers to follow along easily.  This historical Christian fiction focuses on not only fashion but women’s rights, inspiration, faith, and character.
30B07FA6-3C99-4DDD-8598-AEDC66967EC6
     This book has been extremely well researched by author Moser.  It is well planned, organized, and well thought.  The novel is packed with historical details. Detailed descriptions of the time period and place took me right there. It was as if I had left my porch swing and was transported back in time to New York City in 1912 when women were still fighting for our rights.
     The characters are well rounded and defined.  The heroine, Annie, wants to design clothing that the normal, everyday woman can afford.  Even more scandalously she has plans to make a maternity line for those expecting.  This was definitely an eye opening experience reading about how much things have changed.
D9D75AD4-6835-4CEB-AD1A-67D9524F966F
     Faith is sprinkled throughout “The Fashion Designer”.  Some characters walk the Christian Walk and it is evident.  Others hide their light or not know God.  The main characters discuss their faith, pray, have faith and trust God.  It is inspiring and encouraging in many parts.

     Some tough issues are broached in this book.  Issues that unfortunately woman have always struggled with such as domestic abuse, marital issues, pregnancy problems, rape, and self esteem.  It was difficult to read how a husband treated his wife, but I am certain worse things actually happen.  For some people these topics might really hit close to home so they should be aware of this content.  There are definitely adult situations in this book.  Things such as smoking, drinking, rape, abuse, and losing one’s virginity should encourage you to steer younger readers away from this book.

0C8BC320-B1B2-4FC4-9AA7-C672AC97BADF

     This was a delightful, emotional tale of a time period I knew little about before but have learned much since reading this book.  I enjoyed the author’s style and characters.  The faith and inspiration were wonderful.  The adult themes were a bit too dark for this reader, but I would imagine it was true to life.  Everything is not always sunshine and puppies in the read world so why should we expect that of our books?
3C927456-CE52-4882-8327-98981C0A46E3
     Book One, The Pattern Artist, was a wonderful story, too.  Both books may be read as stand alone, but together they make a powerful tale.  This is a redemption story.  A second chances can happen tale.  It isn’t a fluffy light chicklet book, but a heavy dose of ponder on this long after you’ve finished it book.  It is haunting in parts.  This is a book most women would enjoy reading in a book club so that they could discuss it.  It isn’t a light romance.  This is a heavy thought provoking inspirational book.  I highly recommend it and rated it 4 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Barbour for my honest opinion.

 

Read a Book Monday: The Hope Jar, a 5 Star Read

Do you read to feed your mind just as you eat to feed your body?  Most people read but like we often eat we don’t consider the “nutritional contents” in reading.  Today I have a book that will nourish your mind.  No junk food in it at all.  It is a clean Christian Amish novel that is engaging, thought provoking, provides information, inspiration, and even recipes.  Are you interested?  Great, I will tell you more.

86BB90AF-FA98-493F-A5DC-5454C528F8F5

New York Times Best Selling author Wanda Brunstetter has penned a new series entitles The Prayer Jars.  Book One, The Hope Jar, is a delightful 311 pages that will transport readers between the modern Englisch world and modern Amish world.  The book is much different than any other I have read by author Brunstetter.  Her writing style hasn’t changed but the story and information given has.  This book was extremely well thought, planned, and organized as well as well written.

The book centers around an elderly Amish couple, two twenty something young women, and two young men.  Many tough topics are tackled in this fiction work.  Things in which we can all relate are presented in these pages such as family issues, parental rules, teenage and young adult disobedience, death, deceit, lies, abuse, dishonesty, betrayal, and someone struggling with faith.  It would be an injustice to divulge much about the plot.  Reading it and discovering this delightful story on one’s own is much better.

A7F45D45-C4AF-46C8-80C5-4F0D0130A92D

The characters are lovely and some despicable.  The author does a great job defining them and rounding them so that we come to love or really dislike them.  I became invested in their lives and emotions.  Certain situations were relatable either first hand or through a friend.  Dialog flows smoothly and some Amish words are slipped in with definition.  Readers will learn a few Amish or Pennsylvania Deutsch words by the end of this book.  Much information on the Amish is provided.  It would be the perfect book for someone wanting to know the what’s and why’s of Amish life.

After the story, readers will be delighted to find recipes that were mentioned in the story.  As a bonus there are discussion questions for book clubs or if you want to dig a bit deeper yourself.  Author information, a listing of all of the author’s works and a sneak peak at the cover of Book Two, The Forgiving Jar close out this book.

0EA9E021-DB11-44FD-946A-B21277A4FCBA

Definitely I recommend for a variety of reasons.  It provides information some readers may not currently know about Amish, farm life, and scripture. Topics broached are tough, real life issues, and someone might need help with their situation.  Recipes used or discussed in a book and then given are a favorite thing of mine, and this book follows through with that.   Don’t tease me.  If you are going to tempt me with making a delicious dish, then please share the recipe.  The life lessons and inspirational lessons are phenomenal.  Rating this book a 5 out of 5 star is warranted.  This reader is eagerly awaiting Book Two.  A few of author Brunstetter’s works have been turned into plays.  I for one am hoping for a movie next.

A copy of The Hope Jar was provided by Barbour Publishing for my honest opinion.  I can and will give no other.

Find a Book Friday: The Captured Bride

Today’s Friday Find a Book is by a new to me author.  Michelle Griep is a wonderful storyteller.  Her book kept me up unto the wee hours reading.  I kept thinking, just one more chapter, but I could not quit.  I was too invested.  The story was much different than any I had read.  That made it really good.
“The Captured Bride” by author Michelle Griep is Book 3 in the Daughters of the Mayflower series.  Each book is written by a different author and tied in through generations.  This installment is a 256 page paperback historical romance with action, intrigue, and mystery.  Author Griep tossed in some twists and turns to keep readers turning those pages.  I did until I devoured the book in one setting.  It is that good!
This saga is the tale of Mercy Lytton, a scout with sharp vision.  She was was raised with Indians, the Mohawks.  It is also the story of Elias Dubois, a condemned traitor who is working both sides of the conflict.  These two need to work with each other so that a shipment of gold is delivered to the British. It is set in the colony of New York during the turbulent French and Indian War times.

Mercy Lytton is both Mohawk and white as well as very petite.  Elias DuBois has never seen a woman like her before. She is a famous, talented scout for the English with no humility.  At times she is a bit sassy and feisty.  Her first impression of Elias DuBois is not good.   Mercy Lytton considers him to be weak in body and spirit.has ever seen.  He has been severely beaten, condemned as a traitor, and only escapes hanging by joining an elaborate scheme that forces him and Mercy to work together.

The author has sprinkled inspirational messages throughout her novel.  Messages to trust a God, have faith in Him, and that He loves us are abundantly clear.  For me, that is of utmost importance in Christian Fiction.  The characters are well defined.  I knew exactly who they were, flaws and all.  They were well rounded and seemed like friends more than characters.  The book was well researched, the plot well done, and story well written.  Everything flowed seamlessly.  I truly enjoyed reading this and finding a new author.

The Captured Bride is a fantastic story.  It is built around a faith theme, has great romance, adventure, and history.  It is even a tale of war, with Indians.  I would highly recommend this book.  I rate it 5 out of 5 stars.  A copy was provided by Barbour Publishing but all opinions are my own, honest ones.

Amazon has an extended preview of this right now.
F33D4697-1ABF-4C89-AD61-6773D4099D5D

Read a Book Monday: The Pirate Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo

Let me ask you a question.  When you think of Christian novels do you ever imagine a book on pirates?  Me either.  Today’s blog will introduce you to one with a sassy heroine.  This is aptly titled “The Pirate Bride”, and I really enjoyed it.

“The Pirate Bride” by Kathleen Y’Barbo is Book Two in the Daughters of the Mayflower series.  Each book in this series published by Barbour is written by a different author which gives them each an unique perspective.  This Christian historical novel is set in 1725 and has action, adventure, faith, inspiration, romance, and family all rolled in it.  In this book, the main female character, Maribela, is the great-grandaughter of the main couple from Book One.  “The Pirate Bride” can easily be read as a stand alone or Book Two.C438C4E8-AB58-4AD2-BADC-912D1103E02B

Author Y’Barbo has done a fabulous job taking readers on a journey to the eighteenth century and the world of pirates or privateers as they prefer to be called.  Her book is extremely well written with a plot filled with twist and turns.  Doesn’t that make a book fun to read and hard to put down?  I think so.  The descriptions of the exotic places, people, and things were spot on.  Her characters were, well characters very colorful, with some being so lovable and others downright detestable.  They were are well defined and well rounded.
This is the tale of Mirabela Cordova.  She is a spunky young girl that was taken away from everything familiar after she is told that her mother and grandfather have died.  Her father tells her she must come and live with him.  That doesn’t damper her feistiness. Along the way,  Mirabela meets Captain Jean-Luc, leader of a pirate crew, and without giving away any spoilers let’s just say the two become buddies.  This storyline grabbed me when the ship took off and refused me let go.  I could not put it down. The plot twist are really good.  Referencing trusting God and keeping your faith are good lessons one wouldn’t expect in a pirate book.  I love Christian authors that always put God and faith in their books.  6A15551C-B7D4-414B-986E-76A35476CD61Lessons on revenge, lying, greed, and judging as well as love were in this book, too.  I learned things about the time, places, and pirates that I did not know.  It is inspiring, entertaining, and educational.
As much as I enjoyed this book, and I did, there were a few things that were unsettling or needed clarifying.  It felt as though too much was cut out in editing.  I would actually like to see a book 2.5 to finish this story, fill in the gaps, and give background on emotions.
It would make a great movie.  I wanted to cast parts as I devoured the book.  It is hard not to picture some things as we have seen them from movies or television shows.  The author did a fantastic job.  It is a wonderful, take me away read.  I would definitely recommend it and gladly rate it 5 out of 5 stars.