Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Writing Prompt Wednesday

If you're feeling stuck in your WIP (work in progress) or just want to shake things up a bit, here's something different to try today:

I remember this game I used to play in elementary school...

Happy writing!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

"Unsinkable Faith" by Tracie Miles - Prize Pack Giveaway (LitFuse Blog Tour)

Unsinkable Faith Tracie Miles
Join Tracie and other readers on April 25th for a fun Facebook Live event and the Anchored in Faith Prize Pack Giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 25. The winner will be announced at the Unsinkable Faith Facebook Live event. RSVP for a chance to connect with Tracie and others searching for unsinkable faith, as well as for a chance to win other prizes!

RSVP today and spread the word-tell your friends about the giveaway via social media and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 25th!

My review...

Have you ever struggled with negative thinking and felt like you were unable to change that pattern of behavior? It is easy to become consumed with negative thoughts. The more we focus on them, the more the cycle continues. Miles’s latest strives to help the reader break that cycle by taking the thoughts captive and turning them over to Jesus. The key is to focus on Jesus’ truths instead of what the enemy is telling you. Two powerful tools are required: God’s Word and prayer.

Miles’s book shows practical ways to deal with negative emotions. There are numerous stories, by the author as well as other women, which are likely to be very relatable to the reader.

I really enjoyed how Miles discussed crushing ANTs — automatic negative thoughts. The process for doing so is to notice the negative thoughts, reject the negative thoughts, and replace the negative thoughts. She gives examples on doing this, as well.

Each chapter ends with a section on mind-transforming reflections (which summarize key points from the chapter), mind-renewing memory verses, and a chapter challenge. The author encourages the reader to use a journal along with the readings for deeper reflection. This book would be a great addition to small group use, as well.

Some of my favorite takeaway verses include:

·         “When negative thoughts are controlling us, there is hope. When we learn to change the way we think, we can change the way we feel.”
·         “We can’t always control how we feel, but we can always take authority over our own minds and change the way we think, which then changes the way we view and experience life overall.”
·         “We always have the power within us to choose how we think about our circumstances and our lives overall, despite what’s going on.”
·         “Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time.”
·         “Negative thinking is nothing more than a bad habit, and bad habits are meant to be broken.”
·         “Remember, being positive is a daily choice, not a destination.”
·         “Life is not always as we think it should be, but it is always as God planned it to be.”

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy as part of the LitFuse blogger program. I was not required to give a positive review.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Monday Motivation

Some motivation to begin your week:

"It always seems impossible until it's done."
— Nelson Mandela

Have a wonderful week!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

"The Way of Letting Go" by Wilma Derksen

My review...

This is a book about processing grief, letting go, and forgiveness. The author hopes to help the reader find closure. For some people, closure will never occur, but life will continue to go on. Derksen explains that forgiveness is an ongoing process.
The book includes various “letting go” statements to assist the reader. Derksen addresses fifteen misconceptions of grief. She defines acceptance as “a person’s assent to the reality of a situation. This is the beginning of surrendering to the brokenness.” She points out that “accepting means letting it go.”
While this book has many helpful tips, it was not what I expected. It was a bit hard to connect with her tragic story. It’s not one that all readers will be able to relate to. Some readers may find parts of the book a bit shocking, so it’s best for ages 18+.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy as part of the BookLook Bloggers program. I wasn’t required to write a positive review.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Takeover Thursday with Krysten Lindsay Hager

I want to extend a warm welcome to Krysten Lindsay Hager. She's here to discuss her latest release, Dating the It Guy. Here's Krysten...

The idea for Dating the It Guy came about when I was watching a biography on TV about John F. Kennedy Jr. They were talking about the stress on his wife, Carolyn, and I started wondering what it’d be like to date someone like him back in high school with all the pressures and scrutiny around him. So I created Emme Trybus, a normal high school girl who begins dating Brendon Agretti, the son of a well-known senator (and the grandson of another senator). Brendon is popular, an overachiever, and seems like he leads a charmed life. His ex-girlfriend Lauren is also an overachiever and has that perfect preppy look, and Emme always feels less than in her presence. Emme begins to feel out of place in his world. However, Brendon begins opening up to Emme about the pressures that surround him. We start to see his “perfect life” comes with more stress and drama than she realized.

This was an interesting book to write because I began it a few years ago and then came back and rewrote and added scenes as I had become aware of more pressures Brendon would be under and Emme’s response to being in his world. Writing the book made me laugh and had me choke up a few times with tears. 

Book trailer...

Short Excerpt:
“By the way, did you hear Lauren got into Senator Agretti’s old school?”

“Seriously? I wonder if she applied there because Brendon did,” I said.

Margaux snorted. “Duh, of course. Seriously, she might as well just pee on him to mark her territory.”

“Margaux, shut up,” Kylie said.

“Whatever. Anyway, the important thing is if Brendon knew she was applying there,” Margaux said. "Em, do you think he knew?”

I hoped Lauren was just trying to follow Brendon, but what if they had planned this whole thing while they were dating? What if he convinced her to apply there so they could go to college together, wear matching American flag sweaters with big scarves while drinking hot chocolate, and jump into leaf piles just like a preppy clothing catalog. At least now I didn’t have to worry about them reciting poetry to one another in South Bend, but still, what if they had made plans to go to school together?

“Don’t worry about it,” Kylie said. “She was probably trying to follow him—like she always does. She’s so pathetic.”

Kylie was trying to make me feel better, but Lauren was far from pathetic. After all, she was pretty much the “Most Likely to Succeed” poster girl. While she was out overachieving and saving the world without messing up her perfect, bouncy hair, I was trying to get through each day. I tried to push away the image of Lauren and Brendon holding hands and drinking hot chocolate under a stadium blanket. 

My review...

High school sophomore Emme never expected that one day she’d be dating the It Guy at her school, popular senior Brendon, who just happens to be a senator’s son and hot! Unfortunately, his ex, Lauren, isn’t quite ready to give up on him, and she is determined to do all she can to destroy the budding relationship between Emme and Brendon. Emme has always relied on numerology and horoscopes to help her with her decisions, but that’s not working for her at the moment, especially with her grandparents’ failing health thrown into the mix. Will she be able to put her insecurities aside and tackle life head-on, trusting her own instincts? Why does high school, and life, have to be so complicated?

Hager’s authentic characters will resonate with readers of all ages as they are immersed in the story—complete with teen drama and angst, but also the relationships which make it all worthwhile. Vivid descriptions will make the reader feel they are a part of the storyline. The teens are realistic and well-rounded, and they clearly demonstrate the rollercoaster of emotions typical of the age group. Reading a book by Hager is like chatting with your best girlfriend. It is likely that readers will see themselves, and those they know, in the characters.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy, but I wasn’t required to leave a review.

About Krysten...

Besides mining her teen years and humiliating moments for her novels, Krysten is also a book addict who has never met a bookstore she didn’t like. Krysten writes about friendship, self-esteem, fitting in, frenemies, crushes, fame, first loves, and values. She is the author of True Colors, Best Friends...Forever?, Next Door to a Star,  Landry in Like, and Competing with the Star (The Star Series: Book 2). Her debut novel, True Colors, won the Readers Favorite award for best preteen book. Krysten's work has been featured in USA Today, The Flint Journal, the Grand Haven Tribune, the Beavercreek Current, the Bellbrook Times and on Living Dayton.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Tuesday Tip: Critique Groups

What exactly is a critique group? Are they worthy of your time? Keep on reading to learn more.

A critique group is composed of a few writers who evaluate one another's work. They often meet once or twice a month. Some groups may meet virtually, as well. The meetings usually take place at a home, local library, a coffee shop or restaurant.

The purpose of a critique group is to encourage, support, and inspire its members, as well as show them ways to improve their writing.

There is no right or wrong way to structure the meetings, but time should be allowed for reading, note taking, correction, and discussion. Each meeting has a leader to keep things focused and on track.

There are numerous benefits, such as:

  • Motivate you to write so you have something to share with the group
  • Encourage you to submit your material to a publisher, as it will help build your confidence
  • Inform you of various markets for submission
  • Make you more objective about your work as you see it through the eyes of others
  • Allow you to develop friendships with other writers in your area

Friday, April 14, 2017

"Life After" by Katie Ganshert ... and a GIVEAWAY!

In celebration of her latest release, Katie has graciously offered to give away a hard copy of the book (US Only). To enter, see the Rafflecopter box at the bottom of this post. (Contest ends April 21, 2017.) If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you and pass on your information. Good luck!

A word from Katie...

It started with a news article. I'd just finished writing A Broken Kind of Beautiful, which meant I was on the hunt for a new idea. And here was this true story I found somewhere on the Internet of this horrendous plane crash nobody could have survived. Except somebody did. A small boy, without hardly a scratch. I remember staring at his picture, and the decimated plane ... a story slowly taking shape in my mind.

I sat down and I wrote it —this book about a sole survivor, only instead of a plane crashing, it was a train exploding. When I finished, I quickly realized it was in need of a massive overhaul, one I didn't have the energy for at the time. So I tucked it away and wrote The Art of Losing Yourself. And then The Gifting trilogy. All the while, "the train story" (as I used to call it) languished on my hard drive.

For five years.

And then, one day, it was time to take it out and dust it off. Timing, I guess, is everything.

My review...

This is a highly emotional tale told by a masterful storyteller. With her descriptive writing, Ganshert takes the reader on an emotional roller coaster ride, along with the characters.

Autumn Manning was the lone survivor of a train explosion. As the one-year anniversary approaches, she still finds herself wondering why she was the only one to survive. She wants answers, and she wants to do something to ensure that the twenty-two victims will never be forgotten.

Paul Elliott’s wife was one of the victims. His daughter, Reese, has been writing to Autumn without his knowledge. Reese is searching for a sense of closure, and Paul just wants to move on. He knows that things aren’t exactly as Reese believes.

Is it possible for the three of them to find “life after” this tragic event?

This book is likely to leave the reader pondering something for the first time: what about the survivors? How do they feel and cope with “life after”? Beautiful and heartbreaking scenes abound, and the overall uplifting message is so powerful. There is so much realism to the characters. Told in alternating POV’s, this book will stick with the reader long after the final page. It really demonstrates how something good can come from tragedy.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy, but I wasn’t required to write a positive review.

Amazon link for purchase...

About Katie...

K.E. Ganshert was born and raised in the exciting state of Iowa, where she currently resides with her family. She likes to write things and consume large quantities of coffee and chocolate while she writes. She’s won some awards. For the writing, not the consuming. Although the latter would be fun. You can learn more about K.E. Ganshert and these things she writes at her website
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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Writing Prompt Wednesday

If you're feeling stuck in your WIP (work in progress) or just want to shake things up a bit, here's something different to try today:

Write a haiku sonnet. 

NOTE: You can create a haiku sonnet by doing the following:
Write four three-line haiku with a concluding couplet. (A couplet is often written in seven-syllable lines. Rhymes aren't necessary.)

Happy writing!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Monday Motivation

Some motivation to begin your week:

"I can shake off everything as I write; my sorrows disappear, my courage is reborn."
— Anne Frank

Have a wonderful week!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Takeover Thursday with Darlene Franklin ... and a GIVEAWAY!

I want to extend a warm welcome to Darlene Franklin. Darlene is giving away a hard copy (US ONLY) of  The Pony Express Romance Collection. You can enter by using the Rafflecopter link at the end of the post. (Giveaway ends April 13, 2017. If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you and pass on your information.) Now, here's Darlene...

One of the challenges of writing about the Pony Express, as romantic as it sounds, was how to get and keep the hero and heroine in the same place for very long! So I decided to make my heroine a woman searching  for the father who had abandoned her, whom she believes is the stationmaster at the Chelan Swing Station. I also made her from the South, shortly before the War Between the States. I'm a New Englander by birth and wanted to explore the other side of the war for a few pages.

I was invited to join the Pony Express collection, as I was invited to participate in my first novella collection, Snowbound Colorado Christmas. That novella, Dressed in Scarlet, finaled in ACFW's "Book of the Year" contest (now the Carol Awards). If not for that experience, I might never have turned to writing historical romance. Thank you, Lena Nelson Dooley and Tamela Hancock Murray! That was back at the beginning. This year I'm closing in on fifty unique published titles. That sounds impressive — but it took me fourteen years before had a single book published. That's one of the reasons I tell writers that perseverance is more important than raw talent.

Story blurb...

The Gambler's Daughter is one of nine novellas that happen along the Pony Express route in 1860-1861. 

Gambling debts drive Caroline Adams’s estranged father away from the Chelan Swing Station before her arrival. Can his replacement conquer the temptations goading them both to prove himself worthy of Caroline’s love?

Amazon link for purchase...

Darlene's bio...

Best-selling hybrid author Darlene Franklin's greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. This year she expects to reach fifty unique titles in print, and she's also contributed to more than twenty nonfiction titles. Her column, "The View Through My Door," appears monthly in Bookfun Magazine. Her most recent titles are The Pony Express Romance Collection, Love's Compass, and To Riches Again.

Where to find Darlene online...

Twitter:   @darlenefranklin

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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Tuesday Tip: "Just Write" (book recommendation)

I'm doing something a bit different today for "Tuesday Tip."  I'm posting information about a book which might be one to add to your writing resources. It would be beneficial for beginning and veteran authors.

Book blurb (per Amazon)...

Enthrall your readers, love the process, and become the writer you are meant to be!

Writers are given a wealth of opportunities to cultivate a successful writing life, break out, and find an audience for their work. Yet so many writers, from beginners to veterans, find their careers stuck in neutral.

The solution is simple: Just write. Write yourself past fears, doubts, and setbacks, and use your desire for writing excellence to deeply immerse yourself in the craft.

In Just Write, best-selling author and veteran writing coach James Scott Bell shows you how to develop unforgettable stories while leading a rewarding writing life. You'll learn how to master the nuances of fiction, discover what readers really want, and persevere through the challenges of getting started, conquering writers block, and dealing with rejection.  Look inside to discover how to:

  • Brainstorm new concepts for your fiction and develop a believable premise.
  • Create memorable characters that keep your readers coming back for more.
  • Study classic and contemporary novels to improve your writing.
  • Manage your time to maintain peak efficiency.
Fulfilling writing careers are developed through hard work, an investment in practice, and complete dedication to the process. Don't succumb to excuses or procrastination. Dive into your career with gusto and enthusiasm.  Fall in love with writing every day.

Amazon link for purchase...

Monday, April 3, 2017

The Smurfs are coming!

Do you love the Smurfs? Are you excited about their upcoming movie? It releases April 7, 2017. In the meantime, be sure to check out the official trailer.

Here's what the new movie is all about...

 In this fully animated, all-new take on the Smurfs, a mysterious map sets Smurfette on a thrilling race through the Forbidden Forest. Along with her best friends, Brainy, Clumsy and Hefty, Smurfette encounters magical creatures in hopes of finding a mysterious lost village before the evil wizard Gargamel does. This rollercoaster journey filled with action and danger leads the Smurfs to the discovery of the biggest secret in Smurf history! Smurfs: The Lost Village is fun for the whole family and, like all good family films, full of themes that can spark post-screening conversations. These discussion starters on the next few pages will help you talk about important themes in the film

This is the official website for the movie. You'll find all kinds of information there, so stop by! You can read about the characters (as well as the voice behind them), view some fun recipes, take a quiz to test your Smurf knowledge, and even learn to draw a Smurf!

Have a Smurfy day 😊 
(Now, go watch the movie!)

Saturday, April 1, 2017

'The NKJV Woman's Study Bible' Grow in the Word Giveaway (Litfuse blog tour)

The NKJV Woman's Bible Study

You're invited to receive God's truth for balance, hope, and transformation in the fully revised and redesigned The NKJV Woman's Study Bible. The new edition features a beautiful, full-color redesign and poignantly reveals the Word of God with Scripture insights and the contributions of more than eighty women from a wide variety of ethnic, denominational, educational, and occupational backgrounds. Special features designed to speak to a woman's heart appear throughout the Bible text, revealing Scripture-based insights about how godly womanhood grows from a woman's identity as a Christ-follower and a child of the Kingdom.

This spring, cultivate your heart's spiritual roots and enter to win the Grow in the Word Giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on April 27. The winner will be announced April 28 on the Litfuse blog.

My thoughts... 
This is not a review of the Bible as a whole, but more of my opinion of this particular redesign, which is a full-color version of the NKJV Woman's Study Bible. Some of the included features are:

  • full-color design throughout
  • character profiles of over 100 biblical women
  • in-text topical articles on over 300 life issues relevant to women
  • essays written by women who are known as experts in their fields (theology, philosophy, biblical studies, and archaeology)
  • outlines in introductions for each book
  • quotes from various women throughout history
  • topical index
  • full-page maps
  • concordance
These features add to the understanding of the Bible, and I really appreciate and enjoy all of them. However, I particularly like the various ways this is tailored to women, such as the following:

  1. Character profiles: Women such as Eve, Abigail, Chloe, Deborah, Dinah, Sarah, Ruth, Martha, Mary Magdalene, and many others are featured. Some of the women are quite well known to many, but it was interesting to learn more about some of the lesser-known women who are just as important.
  2. Sections on life issues relevant to women: Numerous topics are included, so there is likely to be something that "hits home" with every woman. Some of the issues addressed are:
  • Fear: Shutting God out
  • Commitment: The bedrock of a relationship
  • Gratitude: A thankful spirit
  • Inheritance: Passing it on
  • Envy: Discontent with what you have
  • Communication: Exchanging ideas
  • Fitness: A lifestyle of total health

I was also quite interested in these sections: "Flowers and plants of the Bible," "Vegetables of the Bible," and "Herbs of the Bible." I've read a number of versions of the Bible, and I've never seen these items pointed out before in such a clear way.

The  Bible I have is the brown/burgundy leathersoft version. Overall, it is beautiful, with its floral box, softcover, gold-edged pages, fabric ribbon, and colored pages and maps. This is certainly one Bible to be treasured for many years to come.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy as part of the Litfuse  blogger program, but I wasn't required to leave a positive review.

Friday, March 31, 2017

"Maybe It's You" by Candace Calvert ... and a GIVEAWAY!

In celebration of her latest release, Candace has graciously offered to give away a hard copy of the book (US Only). To enter, see the Rafflecopter box at the bottom of this post. (Contest ends April 7, 2017.) If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you and pass on your information. Good luck!

A Word from Candace...

Hi Leslie! 

It’s a delight to be here with you and your readers—thank you for the hospitality.

Today I thought I’d offer a short, fun glimpse “behind the scenes” in the writing of this hopeful story.  I promise it has zip/nada to do with red pencil edits, deadline panic attacks, or the correct use of semicolons.

It has everything to do with a question every author is asked: “Are your characters real people?”

The usual author disclaimer is NO (in a sentence of carefully worded legalese just inside the cover). But I make no such promises about minor characters who often, in a major way, add just the right flavor to a story. Not only are they “real people,” they are often READERS.

Yes, really. I get a total kick out of spontaneously inviting readers into my stories as characters. I usually do this via Facebook, totally impromptu, and so far nobody’s turned me down. Good folks like . . .

WILMA M who appears as a neighbor to the heroine in Trauma Plan:
 . . . Her next door neighbor clutched a handful of envelopes against her purple blouse, the other hand holding fast to the leash of her rambunctious border collie. “Got some of your mail delivered to my box.” Wilma stepped closer, blinking as Riley’s string of motion sensor floodlights lit her hair like moonlight on Colorado snow . . .

THENA C, real life poet, who became our hero’s aunt in By Your Side:
 . . . Fletcher smiled. Thena was a published poet. He hadn’t had a birthday he could remember—to date—when he didn’t receive a targeted verse or two. Or a single visit when she didn’t proudly proclaim, “I speak in rhyme . . . but not all the time.”

SARAH P, who donates countless hours to kitten rescue, continued her good work in Maybe It’s You:
“We’re a no-kill shelter,” Sarah assured her. She scratched Marty’s chin. “We’re of a mind here that every animal deserves a second chance—as many times as necessary.”

Our daughter-in-law, WENDY M, became “Dr. Wendy” in Step by Step.

And . . .

Also in Maybe It’s You, I borrowed the husband of reader ANN S to become handyman “Jerry Rhodes.” Then—in a first for this author— I made it a family affair by welcoming Ann onboard, adding her elderly mother AND her two adorable dogs:
 . . . “He brought his dogs,” Piper announced, her eyes lighting. “Wiener dogs. I mean, doc-sunns.”
Celeste smiled. “Long-haired dachshunds. So sweet and comical. They’re named—”
“Gibbs and McGee,” Piper blurted, squeezing her hands together with obvious delight. “After the TV show. You know.”
Sloane nodded. “I do.”

They are adorable, aren’t they?

 I love that my novels are peopled with real friends. I like the genuine flavor they add to my stories. And I smile each time I read those scenes. I hope you do, too.

Now, let’s turn that smile into a chuckle or two with a last inside glimpse into the making of this book. Here’s a short collection of BLOOPERS from my Maybe It’s You author video. Enjoy!

My review...

ER nurse Sloane Ferrell thought she had escaped her past by changing her name and address. The pain from her past has made her distrustful, and she keeps her distance from others, for fear of them finding out the truth. Micah Prescott is a volunteer crisis responder who is desperately trying to fill a void in his life. He also wants to improve the image of Hope Hospital, and he thinks Sloane’s recent act of heroism can do just that. Micah will have to convince Sloane to trust him first, which will require both of them to face their pasts.

This book is the highly satisfying conclusion to the “Crisis Team” series. Sloane was quite different earlier in the series, but she has developed into a vulnerable and very likable heroine. Calvert’s background as a trauma nurse adds to the realism of the storyline. Themes of grace, forgiveness, and redemption are woven throughout this touching, hopeful tale. It contains an appropriate blend of romance, medical drama, and action. Difficult topics, such as sex trafficking and alcoholism, are handled in a tactful manner.

One of my favorite lines from the book is: “God never defined you by the past, but the enemy will try to confine you by it.” Definitely a good reminder!

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy, but I was not required to leave a review. Opinions are my own.

Amazon link for purchase...

About Candace...

CANDACE CALVERT is a former ER nurse and author of the Mercy Hospital, Grace Medical, and Crisis Team series. Often called “medical hope opera,” her stories offer readers a chance to “scrub in” on the exciting world of emergency medicine. Wife, mother, and very proud grandmother, Candace makes her home in northern California. 

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Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Writing Prompt Wednesday

If you're feeling stuck in your WIP (work in progress) or just want to shake things up a bit, here's something different to try today:

As I walked in the house, I heard the phone ringing...

Happy writing!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Monday Motivation

Some motivation to begin your week:

"Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm."
              — Ralph Waldo Emerson

Have a wonderful week!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Takeover Thursday with Wendy May Andrews ... and a GIVEAWAY!

I want to extend a warm welcome to Wendy May Andrews. Wendy is giving away an electronic copy of her book, Sweet Surrender. You can enter by using the Rafflecopter link at the end of the post. (Giveaway ends March 30, 2017. If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you and pass on your information.) 

Sweet Surrender is a 92,000 word sweet, regency romance novel.


Can a lost love be rekindled?


When Lady Julianna ended her engagement to Lord Ackerley, Viscount Beaumont, during her first Season, she left London vowing never to return.

Seven years later she returns as chaperone to her niece and unfortunately Lord Ackerley is also in Town for the Season. Moving around the small circle of the ton stirs up feelings she has kept hidden. Embarrassed and ashamed that she made a mistake in ending their previous relationship, she tries to avoid further contact. Ackerley, stunned by her second rejection, pursues her to discover the truth. Is it ever too late for a second chance at love?

Short Excerpt...

Julianna made a graceful curtsy and finally managed to raise her eyelashes and survey the room. It was not playacting that caused her sudden intake of breath as she saw her old beau again. In fact, it took all the force of will she possessed to keep her reaction within bounds. At that first brief encounter, she had been too surprised to take in his splendour. No one had told her the viscount had grown even more handsome in the ensuing years, the strength of his jawline more pronounced, and just the very slightest of grey at the temples in his nearly ebony hair. Forcing her jaw not to drop open in shock, Julianna felt her stomach flutter with nerves as she gripped tightly to her friend’s hand and tried not to cause an ill-bred scene in Catherine’s parlor.

Buy links...

About Wendy...

Wendy May Andrews has been in love with the written word since she learned to read at the age of five. She has been writing for almost as long but hasn’t been sharing those stories with anyone but her mother until recently. This is Wendy’s fifth book with Clean Reads.

Wendy can be found with her nose in a book in a cozy corner of downtown Toronto. She is happily married to her own real-life hero, who is also her best friend and favorite travel companion. Being a firm believer that every life experience contributes to the writing process, Wendy is off planning her next trip.

She loves to hear from her readers and can be found at her website, on twitter, or on Facebook.

Where to find Wendy online...

Twitter:  @WendyMayAndrews
Instagram:  WendyMayAndrews

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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

"A Rocky Mountain Romance" by Misty Beller (A Latte of Literature blog tour) ... and a giveaway!

The Writer’s Support Group

Almost every writer knows this writing journey can be a roller coaster ride of excitement and rejection.

Exhilaration when we exceed our word count for a week, or when we get a request for a full manuscript from an agent or editor, or the first time we hold that precious book in our hands. Nothing can compare to these moments!

And then there are the discouraging times, when we're struggling through the muddy middle of a first draft, or when we receive one more rejection letter to add to the pile, and we second guess whether we should really be doing this writing thing at all.

In each of these moments, God has given us a unique gift—friends. Friends with arms to offer an encouraging hug (sometimes a cyber hug!) and the words we need for a strong pep talk. Writer friends are vitally important to every writer, no matter what stage of the journey we're in. They understand the ins and outs of the writing journey and provide the support, loving direction, or listening ear we need!

God has placed a very special group of women in my life who take on the role of "Friend" through all my writing roller coasters: my critique group! These ladies are much more than just critique partners to me. We share our joys, our trials, our frustrations—even good writing tips we find!

We each came to the group in different ways. For my personal path, I had met two of the women through the ACFW Scribes critique group, and they reached out to me when they were thinking of forming a smaller group. It was with nervous concern that I made the decision to leave the larger group (which I loved) and join the smaller group. But I felt God saying this was the right move, so how could I argue?

It was definitely the right decision! I thank God every day for giving me this special group of ladies.
So what about you? Do you have a small group of writer friends who support each other through the good times and the bad? I'd love to hear your experiences!

About the book...

The Wyoming mountain country seems like the perfect place for Zeche Reid to find himself. When a blizzard sends him scrambling for cover, Zeche stumbles upon a lady and her professor father holed up in a remote cabin. His protective instincts won't let him desert them to continue his travels, especially when the father's haunting memories from the War of Succession put his daughter's safety at risk.

Fighting her own nightmares after the war, Gretta Michelly is trying to settle into this rugged mountain land, but her bad memories are nothing compared to the demons that haunt her father. The haven they've found in these Rocky Mountains seems to be the solace he needs to find peace — until a mysterious sojourner appears on their cabin doorstep. She can't help but be drawn to the wild aura that surrounds the man, but that strength seems to be the very thing that intensifies her father's struggles. 

As Zeche is torn between his craving to protect Gretta and the awful realization that he is the one putting her in more danger, he's forced to make a difficult choice. But when a run-in with an elk changes his plans and Gretta is faced with a danger Zeche is powerless to control, Zeche has to find a way to protect her at any cost. Even at the cost of his heart.

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  • Cashew Roca Toffee chocolates
  • Chamberry Raspberry Truffles
  • Chocolate Covered Almonds
  • Java Bon Coffee Caramels
  • 3 assorted gourmet coffees
  • 2 fudge brownies
  • $15 Barnes and Noble gift card
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About Misty...

Misty M. Beller writes Christian historical romance and is the author of the bestselling Mountain Dreams series and the Texas Rancher Trilogy.

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and daughters now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty's heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God's abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Writing is a dream come true for Misty. Her family — both immediate and extended — is the foundation that holds are secure in that dream.

Where you can find Misty online...