Friday, September 20, 2019

First Line Friday



Happy Friday! It's time for First Line Friday, hosted by Hoarding Books.

It's time to grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line. Today on First Line Friday, I'm featuring Where the Fire Falls by Karen Barnett, the second book in her Vintage National Park series.




And the first line is ...

Olivia Rutherford applied lip rouge the same way she painted--with bold, broad strokes.


About the book...

Watercolorist Olivia Rutherford has shed her humble beginnings to fashion her image as an avant-garde artist to appeal to the region's wealthy art collectors. When she lands a lucrative contract painting illustrations of Yosemite National Park for a travel magazine, including its nightly one-of-a-kind Firefall event, she hopes the money will lift Olivia and her sisters out of poverty.

After false accusations cost him everything, former minister Clark Johnson has found purpose as a backcountry guide in this natural cathedral of granite and trees. Now he's faced with the opportunity to become a National Parks Ranger, but is it his true calling?

As Clark opens Olivia's eyes to the wonders of Yosemite, she discovers the people are as vital to the park's story as its vistas--a revelation that may bring her charade to an end.


Let me know the first line of the book closest to you and then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating.




If you're a blogger or just a social media-er, we'd love for you to join us, too!

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Takeover Thursday with Tanya Eavenson ... and a GIVEAWAY




Tanya has agreed to giveaway one electronic copy of  this book to one lucky blog reader. You can enter by using the Rafflecopter link at the end of the post. (Giveaway ends September 26, 2019. If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you.) 


Blurb... 
Sometimes the path to freedom is found in an unexpected future.
Upon the death of her mother, Rosalind Standford’s life shatters, the pieces scattering to the wind when she is forced into a betrothal to a cunning banker. But when a telegram arrives announcing the man who captured her heart is on a train to Boston, Rosalind must hide her true feelings before the thin cord of her existence unravels the deadly secrets she keeps.
Cowboy Trent Easton returns to his roots in Boston society to find his childhood friend, the love of his heart. Instead he finds a broken woman engaged to a man close to her father’s age. Though she once rejected him, when Trent learns she’s in danger, he determines to do whatever it takes to keep her safe—even taking her to the altar in the black of night. But will his name and the remote wilds of his Texas ranch be enough to protect her? Or will freedom cost them their lives?

Excerpt...

“Father, can we do nothing?” Rosalind asked. “Mother?” She looked from one to the other, but they both looked afraid and lost, an expression she’d never before seen on either of their faces.

When they arrived at the house, Father instructed Mr. Richards to find the doctor, and only after several stumbles did they manage to get Mother inside. Mother’s strength had simply vanished, leaving her pale and aged, too weak to even keep her eyes open as they helped her to bed.

It seemed a lifetime passed before the doctor arrived. During the examination, Mother lay still. Too still. Fear surged to Rosalind’s core at Mother’s motionless state. Then another cough raked through Mother’s body, blood dripped from her nose, and Rosalind didn’t know which was worse—watching Mother lie still as death or seeing the spasms and hearing the awful retching. Tears filled Rosalind’s eyes as she stroked strands of soft brown hair from her mother’s face and tucked them behind her ear.

“Do you know what’s wrong with her, Doctor? Is it consumption?” her father asked.

Kneeling next to the bed, the physician wiped her mother’s nose and folded the cloth. “Her coughing is worse. I’m afraid you are correct. She has tuberculosis.”

Rosalind shook her head and ran from the room. She flew down the stairs, faltered into the stagnant night air, and stopped on the porch as reality weighed heavily on her shoulders. She swallowed down her screams. “God, are You listening? Don’t You see? You must help my mother. Please don’t take her. Don’t …” She fell to her knees, sobbing into her palms.

Arms came around her shoulders, and she jerked back, biting back her tears. “Mr. Richards.” She moved from him and stumbled on the hem of her gown but caught her balance.

“It’s all right.” He followed her. “I have your father’s permission.”

She wiped her cheek with the back of her hand. “What do you mean you have his permission?”

“We will be married.”

Rosalind fought to understand what Mr. Richards was saying, but the words seemed scrambled, incomprehensible. Her mind a fog. “What do you mean, married?”

“Earlier tonight I asked permission to court you, but moments ago, he gave me his full blessing.”

Surely she’d misheard him. “You asked for my hand in marriage now, while we’re learning my mother is dying? My father is as distraught as I am.”

“Perhaps the doctor’s wrong,” Mr. Richards whispered against her ear. “Perhaps she will recover. Nevertheless …”

“We shouldn’t be … you shouldn’t be alone with me here like this. Propriety …”

He dragged a fingertip along her jaw, then down her bare arm, his expression declaring ownership even as it dared her to argue.

Though her heart galloped, she fought her instincts to flinch. Glover Richards was a very powerful man, she’d overheard her father saying once, powerful enough to harm his enemies. Father must need the man’s friendship, otherwise he would never have agreed. “Why? Why me?”

“I will court you as your father wishes.” A slow smile slid up one side of his face. “And at nineteen you will be my bride.”

Rosalind’s pulse pounded in her ears. None of this made sense. If only Mother were well. She’d never let Father agree to this marriage, and he would listen to her.

She balled her hands into fists at her waist, squeezing the satin lace crisscrossing there—satin meant to draw Trenton’s eye. Yet Trenton was packing his trunk for Texas, even as Mr. Richards’s gaze roamed her hair, her face and throat, and her bodice and cinched gown.

“We don’t have to announce our betrothal … yet,” he said as if the deed was done.

She swallowed, meeting Mr. Richards’s stare.

He took her hand and slid it through the crook of his arm. “Let’s get you back inside, shall we?”

She let him lead her, but her heart recoiled, and she threw a desperate prayer toward heaven. Lord, You must heal my mother and rescue me. Save us.



What I'm working on next...

Besides writing historical romance, I also write contemporary romance. I just received my next cover for a story entitled To Gain Forever that's set to release this spring before Mother's Day. Early summer, you can expect to see the second historical romance book from the All Roads Lead to Texas series, entitled The Proposal. And in late fall, I plan to release another story entitled Love on a Dime. It's a contemporary story, but it will tie into The Rescue and  The Proposal. To say next year will be a busy time is an understatement, but what a year it will be!


About Tanya...


Tanya Eavenson is an international bestselling and award-winning inspirational romance author. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children. Her favorite pastime is grabbing a cup of coffee, eating chocolate, and reading a good book. 


Where you can find Tanya online...


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Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Things to Eat/Drink While Reading








Happy Tuesday! Today's Top Ten Tuesday link-up theme is  Favorite Things to Eat/Drink While Reading.

So, here we go, in no particular order...




I enjoy a variety of protein bars and granola bars. They're easy to munch on while reading. 



You really can't go wrong with popcorn. I enjoy the 100-calorie packs, as they're just the right size for one person to munch on while reading.




My favorite licorice is strawberry Twizzlers. On occasion, I can find the chocolate licorice, and I like that, as well.




I enjoy trail mix, and I'm not too particular on the flavor. I love cashews and almonds, and they're even better with a bit of chocolate thrown in.


I like herbal teas. I found a lemon one a couple years ago that tastes like lemon pound cake. Yum! I also really enjoy chai tea and cinnamon hibiscus.



I like the 100-calorie packs of pretzels. On occasion, I pick up the butter braid variety.



Chocolate! My favorites are dark chocolate, peppermint patties, and peanut butter cups. But, in a pinch, just about any chocolate will do. I don't really care for white chocolate, unless it's the white chocolate peanut butter cups (as they primarily taste like peanut butter). 



I mainly drink water. Hint is my favorite, but I also do a lot of fruit-infused water, as well.



If I'm wanting something crunchy, chips are probably my favorite. I enjoy a lot of flavors. I tend to stick with one flavor/brand for a few months before tiring of it and moving on to another kind. I enjoy the individual packs of chips, as well.



Once winter arrives, it's hot chocolate time! I like the dark chocolate variety, and, of course, I throw in some marshmallows. (Though it's not quite as festive as this photo.) Sometimes I'll add a small candy cane, as well.

So, what do you like to eat/drink while reading?

Tuesday Tip: Three websites to help spark your creativity (part 2)




Are you feeling stuck in your writing? Do you just want a change of direction? If so, here are a few websites that may help spark your creativity.


1.  Six-Word Memoirs: This site will help you create concise tales and join the ranks of more than one million other contributors.


2.  Storybird: This is a unique site that will help you visualize stories of all kinds. You can participate in challenge prompts, as well.


3.  Reddit's/R/WritingPrompts: A great place to have your work seen and receive feedback.

Monday, September 16, 2019

"Fall Flip" by Denise Weimer ... and a GIVEAWAY! (SLB Tours)

Fall Flip & Witness Tree Double Tour

About the Book

Fall Flip
Genre: Christian, Contemporary
Publisher: Candlelight Romance an imprint of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas
Publication date: August 30, 2019

  She knows how to flip a home. What happens when he flips her heart? 

 The tragic death of Shelby Dodson’s husband—her partner in a successful Home Network house flipping business—stole love, status, and career. Now a bungalow redesign thrusts Shelby into the company of a new contractor. Scott Matthews remembers high-and-mighty Shelby from high school, and her prissy, contemporary style goes against his down-to-earth grain. When the house reveals a mystery, will its dark secrets—and their own mistakes—cost them a second chance at love?


About the Author

Denise Weimer
Denise Weimer holds a journalism degree with a minor in history from Asbury University. She's an editor for the historical imprints of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas as well as the author of The Georgia Gold Series, The Restoration Trilogy, and a number of romantic novellas, including Across Three Autumns of Barbour's Backcountry Brides Collection. Represented by Hartline Literary Agency, Denise is a wife and mom of two daughters who always pauses for old houses, coffee, and chocolate!


Giveaway

Bundle Giveaway
Enter the giveaway HERE.

Giveaway ends September 30 at 11:59pm MT. Giveaway is subject to policies HERE.

Tour Schedule


Check out the tour schedule HERE.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

"An Amish Christmas Bakery" by Amy Clipston, Beth Wiseman, Kathleen Fuller, and Kelly Irvin




This charming novella collection is just in time for the upcoming holiday season. It releases on October 1, 2019. You can get your copy here.


Q & A with Amy Clipston...

Q:  Congrats on the new novella collection. I've read it and really enjoyed it. Since this novella is one in which Alyssa works in a bakery, what's a baked good that just has to be in your house at Christmas?
A:  My mom and I like to make cookies and cheesecake. I also love her lemon pound cake. Yum!

Q:  All of those sound really yummy! In your story, "Cookies and Cheer," Alyssa came up with an incredible idea for a display. Have you ever seen a display like hers?
A:  My mom and I brainstormed Christmas story ideas, and together we came up with the bakery display. I hope readers enjoy reading about it as much as I enjoyed writing about it.

Q:  Did any of your own Christmas traditions get written into this novella?
A:  The only tradition I included was writing Christmas cards, which the Amish do. I love to send out Christmas cards every year. Lately, I have ordered cards with cats on them. What a surprise, right? I send them out to friends and family members, and I always include a family photo that we had taken that year, along with the boys' school photos. I already have decided what photo to include in this year's card.

Q:  We send out cards. It's fun to receive them. One final question. Do you have a favorite Christmas movie that you make sure to watch every year?
A:  Yes! We always watch "Die Hard" (the first one, of course). It's been a tradition for many years. It was one of my father's favorite movies, and it always brings back happy memories. In fact, my son Matt and I pretty much know the lines by heart, and we like to quote them during the movie. (I'm sure that's annoying to the other watchers!)

Thanks so much for stopping by, Amy. I'm sure my readers will enjoy learning a bit more about your and the novella.


My review...


This is a charming novella collection, perfect for the upcoming holiday season. (I read this in the middle of summer, and it was a welcome, though brief, reprieve from the summer heat and humidity.) All four authors are well-known in Christian fiction for creating strong characters, charming settings, and heartwarming scenes, and this collection is no exception. All of the stories are wonderfully detailed, and the authors do a great job of making the reader feel a part of the story. The stories help the reader remember the true reason for the season. I enjoyed the discussion questions, as well, which would make this a nice book to use for a book club. If you're looking for a book that's a sweet, quick read and easy to fit into a busy schedule, this is one to check out.

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

Be sure to check out the Facebook party!

Saturday, September 14, 2019

"As the Light Fades" by Catherine West ... and a GIVEAWAY! (JustRead Tours)


Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for As the Light Fades by Catherine West, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

High Res-As the Light Fades 
Title: As the Light Fades 
Author: Catherine West  
Release Date: September 10, 2019  
Genre: Contemporary Fiction

Sometimes we’re placed in the strangest of circumstances for the most important reasons.

After her carefully constructed life crumbles, Liz Carlisle finds herself back on Nantucket, picking up the pieces. With the family estate under renovations, the solitude she craves seems out of reach.

Matthew Stone intends to steer clear of his new tenant. She’s carrying a load of baggage, but as long as she pays the rent, he’ll let her be. He’s got enough to deal with caring for his wayward niece, Mia.

Liz doesn’t have time for teenagers and her track record with men is abysmal, but an unlikely friendship forms between the three.

When her former boyfriend is charged with assault, Liz is called to testify against him. But he knows the darkest secrets of her life—secrets she’d hoped to keep buried forever, and he’s ready to reveal them. Telling the truth is the right thing to do, but it may cost her everything she’s worked so hard for, and all she’s come to love.

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon


EXCERPT

“I’ll need to give it some thought. May I call you in a couple of days?”
“Sure.” Matt walked her out and led her around the main house to where she’d parked the car. “Wow. I didn’t think these old things still ran.” The beige and faux-wood paneled Ford station wagon had certainly seen better days, but it wasn’t unusual to see old cars here on the island.
“Runs better than you’d expect.” She had her sunglasses back on and stuck out a slender hand. “Well, thank you. Goodbye, Mr. Stone.”
The moment Matt clasped his hand around hers, a definite sizzle of attraction shook him to his senses.
Letting a woman like Elizabeth Carlisle live on his property was possibly the worst idea ever. Maybe she’d say she wasn’t interested anyway. But he needed the money. “Thanks for coming, Miss Carlisle. I’ll look forward to hearing from you.” Matt stepped back and watched her drive off. Half of him hoped he’d see her again. The other half, the more sensible, cautious side, said it’d probably be a darn good thing if he didn’t.


Excerpt From: Catherine West. “As the Light Fades.” iBooks.



MY REVIEW

The story is told via three POVs: Elizabeth Carlisle, who's moved back to the island after leaving her abusive ex. Her father is battling Alzheimer's. Matt Stone, who's recently arrived in town and is caring for his niece. Mia Stone, who's a troubled fifteen-year-old, forced to deal with things no one her age should have to handle. The three lives intersect when Elizabeth becomes the new tenant at Matt's guest house.

I'm not a huge fan of romances, and this does have a romance angle to it. It wasn't overwhelming, but it did make some parts a bit predictable. Also, a few parts felt a bit rushed. This is the second book in the series, but it could easily be read and enjoyed as a standalone. However, reading them in order would help the reader feel more of a connection to the characters. Family dynamics are strong, as are themes of forgiveness and second chances. The author tackles some difficult topics (domestic abuse and cutting) in a sensitive manner.

Possible trigger warnings: domestic abuse, cutting/self-harm

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



ABOUT THE AUTHOR

12.03.17-West.178

Catherine West is an award-winning author of contemporary women’s fiction. When she’s not at the computer working on her next story, you can find her taking her Border Collie for long walks or reading books by her favorite authors. She and her husband reside in Bermuda, and have two adult children and two beautiful granddaughters. Catherine is the winner of the 2015 Grace Award (Bridge of Faith) and a two-time winner of Romance Writers of America’s Faith, Hope & Love Reader’s Choice Award (The Things We Knew, 2017 and Where Hope Begins, 2019, and a Carol Award Finalist for Where Hope Begins. Her latest novel, As the Light Fades, releases September 2019.

Catherine loves to connect with her readers and can be reached at Catherine@catherinejwest.com  

CONNECT WITH CATHERINE: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a $75 Amazon gift card from the author!

Giveaway_AsTheLightFades_BlogJR

Be sure to check out each stop on these tours for more chances to win. Full tour schedule on this tour shown below. Giveaway begins at midnight September 11, 2019 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on September 18, 2019. Winners will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US/CAN only. For our giveaway rules and policy, click HERE.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE
 

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Friday, September 13, 2019

"The Girl behind the Red Rope" by Ted Dekker and Rachelle Dekker ... and a GIVEAWAY!


The publisher has agreed to give away two print copies of this book (US ONLY). You can enter by using the Rafflecopter link at the end of the post. (Giveaway ends September 20, 2019. If you are the randomly chosen winner, I'll contact you.) 


Q&A with Ted and Rachelle...

Q:  Ted, what advice did you have for Rachelle as she began writing?
A:   They say getting published is like crossing a stormy sea (the writing process) with the hopes that, once on a distant shore, you might get struck by lightning (being published). Having taken that journey myself, I feared for my daughter's emotional well-being in attempting such an arduous crossing. The journey brings you to a breaking point, over and over. And even then, there is more hardship with each novel you write.

Ten years ago, Rachelle stood on the stage with me and announced her intention to become a novelist. I was surprised by the tears that rushed into my eyes, right there in front of a thousand people. I begged her to reconsider — surely inviting such struggle wasn't wise! Then she was crying, insisting she had to take the journey, and I held her for a moment as we both embraced that journey in the face of fear. It was a tender and life-altering experience for both of us. Little did we know that ten years later we would be co-authoring a book that exposes the sea of fears masquerading as wisdom that we have been taught will keep us safe.

Q:  Rachelle, you have now written five novels. Why did you decide to pursue writing in spite of your dad's advice?
A:  I learned early that I, like my father, discovered truth about the world and myself best through writing. I wrote because I had to. And I'm a rebel of sorts, so if you tell me I can't or shouldn't do something, it makes you want to do it that much more. We all need to find our own way across the sea of fears that makes up our world, regardless of the encouragement or discouragement that comes our way. In hindsight, he was right — the storms of fear in life are often debilitating. But facing and overcoming them, in whatever course we choose, is the great privilege we all have in this life.

Q:  Did you ever worry about what collaboration might do to your father-daughter relationship? How did you handle disagreements on direction if and when they came up?
A:  No. If anything, collaborating taught us to see ourselves as partners on a journey beyond the expectation of authority that historically exists in a father-daughter relationship. We knew from the beginning that collaborating was as much about us letting go of our individual ideas and preferences as it was writing a story. As it turns out, we work very well together in that awareness.

Q:  What surprised the two of you about working together?
A:  How easy it was, really. Once you let go of ownership in any idea and the desire to project our ideas on each other, the path flowed with ease and grace. Who says one idea is better than another, anyway? We all have ideas of how things should be, and as we release the "shoulds," a new creative energy arises. The whole novel is actually about letting go of all the "shoulds" that keep us in fear. Fear kills creativity.

Q:  What compelled you to write The Girl behind the Red Rope?
A:  I (Rachelle) had been working with the story idea for some time before we decided to make this novel a collaborative work. I was initially intrigued by the question "What if our fears were like monsters that followed us?" Because aren't they really? Once we decided to work together, we expanded the idea further and fleshed it out to what it is now: a story of love over fear, light over darkness, and freedom over all we have been taught will keep us safe and secure.

If we think of fear, darkness, and the safety offered by all the "shoulds" in life as what we call evil, we quickly see how pervasive it is in this world, including in religion itself. We don't easily see all those monsters that hold us captive in this life, and once we do, we are rather shocked. It's no wonder fear rules this plane of existence — we continue to feed it under the guise of wisdom and godliness. But in love there is no fear. So how does one awaken out of the darkness of fear into the light of love? That's the conundrum this story engages.

Q:  Who is the girl behind the red rope?
A:  When you read the novel, we think you'll see the main character as someone you might be familiar with because she is all of us. Grace lives in the safest place on earth. None of the devastation of the world can reach her. There's a rule for everything, and all the temptations that call to us are absent. This place is the purest place on earth as long as she stays behind the red rope. So what could possibly go wrong?

As it turns out, everything. What was once seen as the desire for purity is quickly seen as fear of not being pure. Indeed, fear is the god we so often bow down to. We have been deceived into thinking it will keep us safe. But letting go of that lie is counterintuitive to all we have been taught about ourselves and the world we live in.

In the end, the girl behind the red rope is the whole world.

Q:  Are any of the characters' issues personal or ones you have struggled with in your own lives?
A:  All of the characters' issues are personal to both of us at different times in our lives, including those we still contend with. Their specific issues are all just various aspects of the entire system of fear and control — the wisdom of the world that tucks us in at night and makes us believe we are safe while enslaving us still. We all have red ropes that hold us captive, and if we can see the system of fear and control for what it is, we would be shocked. Here is a story that opens our eyes to some of those fears and the light of love and freedom beyond them.

Q:  How can readers connect with you?
A:  (Ted) Readers can connect with me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/teddekker/.
      (Rachelle) The best place to connect is through my website, www.rachelledekker.com.

Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions. I'm sure my readers will enjoy it learning the story behind the story.

My review...

I’ve read numerous books by Ted Dekker, and I’ve read some from Rachelle, as well, so I was excited to read this one they co-wrote. As expected, it was a thought-provoking read.

What lengths will a person go to in order to feel safe when they’ve been raised to be afraid of everything? That’s what Grace must decide. She’s lived her entire life in Haven Valley, a community that’s separated itself from the rest of the world and lives under strict rules to keep them safe from the Fury. They are taught never to go beyond the red rope surrounding their community. But, things change when Grace’s brother goes beyond that perimeter and a child from the other side shows up in Haven Valley, causing her to have doubts about all she’s known to be true. Is he the demon they’ve been taught to fear? Or does he have a higher purpose? Does the Fury truly exist?

The authors take the reader behind that red rope perimeter and cause them to explore, and even question, good vs. evil in the world. The story may cause the reader to take a closer look at their own beliefs and view things through new eyes to determine if they have red ropes in their own lives. Themes of fear and freedom are woven throughout, creating a powerful message, as well as a suspenseful ride along the way.

Some of my favorite quotes:
  • “…there is no fear in love, just like there’s no darkness in light.”
  • “Fear has blinded all of humanity.”



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


About the authors...


Ted Dekker is the award-winning and New York Times bestselling author of more than forty novels, with over ten million copies sold worldwide. He was born in the jungles of Indonesia to missionary parents, and his upbringing as a stranger in a fascinating and sometimes frightening culture fueled his imagination. Dekker's passion is simple — to explore truth through mind-bending stories that invite readers to see the world through a different lens. His fiction has been honored with numerous awards, including two Christy Awards, two Inspy Awards, and RT Reviewers' Shoice award, and an ECPA Gold Medallion. In 2013, NPR readers nationwide put them in the Top 50 Thriller Authors of All Time. Decker lives in Nashville, Tennessee with his wife Lee Ann.


Rachelle Dekker is the Christy Award-winning author of The Choosing, The Calling, and The Returning in the Seer series. The oldest daughter of New York Times bestselling author Ted Dekker, Rachelle was inspired early on to discover truth through the avenue of storytelling. She writes full-time from her home in Nashville, where she lives with her husband, Daniel, and their son, Jack.




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Thursday, September 12, 2019

"The Amish Christmas Matchmaker" by Vannetta Chapman ... and a GIVEAWAY! (JustReads blog tour)



Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for The Amish Christmas Matchmaker by Vannetta Chapman, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

The Amish Christmas Matchmaker by Vannetta Chapman 
Title: The Amish Christmas Matchmaker  
Series: Indiana Amish Brides #4  
Author: Vannetta Chapman  
Publisher: Love Inspired 
Release Date: September 1, 2019  
Genre: Inspirational Amish Fiction

She’ll find him a wife for Christmas…

Which of these Indiana Amish Brides is next?

With her wedding business thriving, Annie Kauffmann could never leave her beloved Amish community.

So when handsome Amish cowboy Levi Lapp tries to convince her father to move the family to Texas, she must put a stop to it.

If Annie finds Levi a wife, he might forget his dream of moving…but can she keep from falling for him herself?

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Christianbook


EXCERPT

Annie stepped into the coolness of the house. Though it was September, the temperatures had remained warm, and the cool living room was a relief after her bike ride from town. Her father and Levi Lapp were in the kitchen, which would work perfectly. She straightened her apron, made sure her kapp wasn’t askew and walked into the kitchen as if she had no idea she was interrupting.
She aimed for a casual stride but stumbled when she spied the man in a cowboy hat. A cowboy hat? She shook her head as if that would clear up what she was seeing.
“Annie. I’m glad you’re home. I want you to meet Levi…Levi Lapp.”
“Hello.”
Levi tipped the cowboy hat, revealing blond hair that curled at his collar. “Howdy, ma’am.”
Howdy, maam?
Had she fallen asleep and landed in a Western? “I’m Annie.”
“It’s nice to meet you.”
“And you, as well. I was just fetching two glasses of lemonade. Don’t let me interrupt…”
“Levi’s from Pennsylvania—the Lancaster Plain community.”
Ya? I imagine it’s cooler there.” She didn’t care about the weather in Pennsylvania, but she couldn’t exactly ask about the hat.
“It was cooler when I left. Now Texas, where I plan to go, it’s still much warmer. They have days in the 80s right through November.”
“Texas?” Annie had pulled two glasses from the cabinet. At the mention of Texas she turned toward Levi, holding the glasses and trying to remember what she was going to do with them.

He wasn’t ugly exactly, only odd looking because of the hat. He seemed to be tall and on the thin side, had a healthy tan and broad shoulders. His blue eyes twinkled as if he understood her confusion and was enjoying it.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Vannetta Chapman  

Vannetta Chapman writes inspirational fiction full of grace. She is the author of over twenty novels, including the Pebble Creek Amish series, Shipshewana Amish Mystery Series, and Plain and Simple Miracle series. Vannetta is a Carol award winner, a Christy finalist, and she also received more than two dozen awards from Romance Writers of America chapter groups. She currently writes Christian suspense, Amish romance, and Amish mystery. She was a teacher for 15 years and resides in the Texas hill country.

CONNECT WITH VANNETTA: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a copy of The Amish Christmas Matchmaker (print or digital), a quilted Amish mug mat, a woven Amish mug mat, and $10 Amazon gift card!


Be sure to check out each stop on these tours for more chances to win. Full tour schedule on this tour shown below. Giveaway begins at midnight September 9, 2019 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on September 16, 2019. Winners will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. Due to shipping cost, only US mailing addresses valid. 

For our giveaway rules and policy, click HERE.

 

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Monday Motivation



"There is no real ending. It's just the place where you stop the story."
— Frank Herbert


Have a wonderful week!


Friday, September 6, 2019

First Line Friday



Happy Friday! It's time for First Line Fridays, hosted by Hoarding Books.

It's time to grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line. Today on First Line Friday, I'm featuring The Selection by Kiera Cass. It was released in 2013, and I've heard about it for years. I've just recently added it to my TBR pile.




And the first line is ...

When we got the letter in the post, my mother was ecstatic.

About the book...

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime.

The opportunity to be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her, and leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she begins to realize that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

Let me know the first line of the book closest to you and then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating.




If you're a blogger or just a social media-er, we'd love for you to join us, too!

"Chronic Love" by Brooke Bartz ... and a GIVEAWAY! (JustRead blog tour)



Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for Chronic Love by Brooke Bartz, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

 
Title: Chronic Love: Trusting God While Suffering with A Chronic Illness 
Author: Brooke Bartz  
Publisher: Ambassador International 
Release Date: September 1, 2019  
Genre: Christian Living, Health and Wellbeing

Suffering is inescapable in this world. 

Jesus told us we would face perilous trials and that even our bodies would feel the effects of the Fall. For women dealing with chronic illness, most books offer quick-fix counseling or devotional verses taken out of context, helpful only for momentary encouragement.

For true and lasting comfort we must dig deeper into God's Word and the context in which those much-used passages were written.

In Chronic Love, Brooke Bartz reveals a deeply raw and descriptive account of life with a chronic and debilitating illness, and she shares with readers how comfort and strength can be found through the Truth in God's Word.  

Specifically designed for women who daily battle chronic illness, Chronic Love's goal is to provide solid Scriptural encouragement for the fight.
 
PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Christianbook



EXCERPT

He will carry you. He will wrap his invisible wings around you and rock you, put peace over your war, sing over your fragmented heart, and hold you up as you try to slink down and retreat. He will supernaturally do this through the peace that passes all understanding in Christ. He gives answers to questions in such a way we just don’t understand as humans; yet this kind of help He gives protects our heart and mind.“ I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints” (Ephesians 1:18).


The pain might still be there, but you will find His peace, courage, and strength as you disclose your many prayers and petitions without any fear or trepidation.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

Brooke Bartz is a stay-at-home wife and mom who lives daily with a chronic disease, knowing firsthand the daunting, gnawing physical and spiritual pain it causes. Yet disease was not always her close companion; in the years before her diagnosis, she grew up playing sports and earned a full scholarship to play volleyball at the University of Mary Hardin Baylor. Not yet a Christian, she transferred colleges and attended an event for an on-campus ministry; as the Lord had planned, she heard the Gospel and He saved her. Soon after and while still in college, she married her childhood crush and began a volleyball coaching career.

Living with rheumatoid arthritis and gastroparesis, Brooke desires for women to know the truth about the God who loves them and is with them each day as they face disease and disability; she shares the Truth of the Bible as their ultimate healing. Brooke’s passion is spurring on the women God leads to her sphere of influence, inspiring their hearts to keep their strength and hope at the foot of the cross, to trust in the Great Shepherd to one day heal them completely in glory, even though for now they are suffering on earth.  

CONNECT WITH BROOKE: Instagram

GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a print copy of Chronic Love, a Chronic Love T-shirt, a Chronic Love coffee mug, a copy of Trusting God Even When Life Hurts by Jerry Bridges and the workbook for Trusting God Even When Life Hurts!


Be sure to check out each stop on these tours for more chances to win. Full tour schedule on this tour shown below. Giveaway begins at midnight September 3, 2019 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on September 10, 2019. Winners will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. Due to shipping cost, only US mailing addresses valid. 

For our giveaway rules and policy, click HERE.

 


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.