What I'm Reading ~ Weekend 6/29-7/1/12

Well, I guess I'm off again! Two weeks with minimal internet, having a great time in the country :) I have a couple of reviews scheduled and I'll be sure to get some blogging done when I visit the local library that they have there, so it'll be just like I'm here!

The Gifted: A NovelNow onward to the books!

I've never read a book directly about the Shakers, so I'm excited to start this one. I read recently that there are only 3 Shakers living in America today, so I'm sure to learn some things from this book.

Here's the blurb:

By 1849, Jessamine Brady has been in the Shaker Village for half her life, but in spite of how she loves her sisters there, she struggles to conform to the strict rules. Instead she entertains dreams of the world outside. When Tristan Cooper seems to step out of those dreams to entice her into the forbidden realm beyond the Shaker Village, her life turns upside down. Will Jessamine be able to survive the storms of the world? Or will she retreat back to the peace of Harmony Hill?

The thousands of loyal fans of Gabhart's Shaker novels will love this entrancing story of learning to trust the gifts God gives us and let him guide us through life.

The MessengerI'm also really happy to finally get to The Messenger by Siri Mitchell :)

Here's the blurb:

Hannah Sunderland felt content in her embrace of the Quaker faith
...until her twin brother ran off and joined the army and ended up captured and in jail. Suddenly Hannah's world turns on end. She longs to bring her brother some measure of comfort in the squalid, frigid prison where he remains. But the Quakers believe they are not to take sides, not to take up arms. Can she sit by and do nothing while he suffers?
Jeremiah Jones has an enormous task before him. Responsibility for a spy ring is now his, and he desperately needs access to the men in prison, whom they are seeking to free. A possible solution is to garner a pass for Hannah. But while she is fine to the eye, she holds only disdain for him--and agreeing would mean disobeying those she loves and abandoning a bedrock of her faith.
With skill and sensitivity, Mitchell tells a story of two unlikely heroes seeking God's voice
, finding the courage to act, and discovering the powerful embrace of love.

Well that's what I'm reading this weekend?
Now, let me shoot that question back at you. What are YOU reading?



The Director's Cut by Janice Thompson ~ Revell Blog Tour & Review

The Director's Cut (Backstage Pass, #3)
My Review: An entertaining read about the entertainment industry!

Tia Morales is the director of the Golden Globe winning hit TV sitcom, Stars Collide. Tia stuggles to hold on to her sanity while trying to stay strong and take care of everything all by herself. With a hit TV show comes...a lot of pressure! Will Tia be able to keep her head above water, with all the craziness going on around her?

I'm gonna be honest it took me awhile to get hooked onto this book, longer than I would have liked, somewhere around page 100. But after that, the book really took off and I became invested in the characters and the pages didn't stop turning until the last page was turned down.

I think that one of my favorite characters was Lenora, who was just the sweetest old lady, who marched to the beat of her own drum, and had fun even though she was losing her memory.

I liked the interwoven humor, and I really liked the larger than life characters. Even though I hadn't read the other books in the series I was able to enjoy it, though that might have been why I didn't jump on right away. But this was just overall a fun book, that was just a blast to read!

I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review. Thanks!

“Available June 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”


The Baron's Governess Bride by Deborah Hale ~ Review

The Baron's Governess Bride

Lucie's Review: A Regency Era Cinderella.

Grace Ellerby fears the disadvantages of being a young governess in the home of a titled gentleman that come with unwanted advances, so she comes up with a plan. Grace dresses herself as an bespecticled mousy, and meek woman, non-descript and unattractive.

Lord Steadwell, on the other hand is tired of his pretty young governesses running off and getting married, leaving his children without a governess. So he is more than happy to hire, the unattractive Miss Ellerby to care for his children. Great adventures await between the covers of this charming twist on Cinderella.

With a charming premise, The Baron's Governess Bride is an entertaining read from the very beginning. I found the situation to be realistic in that it probably wasn't the safest position for a young lady to be in, as a vulnerable woman in the house of a powerful man, so I thought that Grace's idea was genius!

I loved reading about Grace and her interactions with the children, from challenges to completely charming. It was wonderful to watch the characters grow, with both Steadwell and Grace overcoming scars from the past. 

This was a lovely book and I thoroughly enjoyed the inwoven threads of Cinderella that added a certain sweetness to the tale. Though it was a bit Cinderella-like, it was also a pretty believable plot (no singing mice here!) for the setting and time. Overall, a wonderful Regency translation of Cinderella.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.


Liebster Blog Award ~ Thank You Abbi!

First of all,  a big "thank you" to Abbi from Christian Novels for passing on this lovely award to me! This a real cool award because it is given to those who have less than 200 followers, and the word "leibster" means "sweetheart" in German.  Thank you, Abbi!

Here are the rules:
1. Each person must post 10 facts about themselves
2. Answer 10 questions the tagger has given you and give 10 questions for the people you’ve tagged.
3. Choose 10 people and link them in your post.
4. Tell them you’ve tagged them.
5. Remember, no tag backs.

My 10 Things:
1. I'm really bad at thinking up witty Facebook statuses.
2. I real life I'm kinda shy and have with a slight lisp. 
3. I can talk for 3 hours straight about books of almost any kind.
4. I'm not from Wyoming, and I don't live there, but I love the state of Wyoming!
5. I like watching British mini-series, and I really like ones that are intriguing and super clean, but kinda creepy. And I love Downton Abbey, A&E/BBC's Lorna Doone, Horatio Hornblower ( with Ioan Gruffudd), Little Dorrit, Merlin, and so many more! 
She's kinda scruffy in this picture!
6. I don't like parties for myself, I like attending parties for others though!
7. I think that Facebook has mysterious vortex powers that suck you in.
8. I think politics are fascinating.
9. I usually get the job of bathing and giving the family dog a haircut.
10. And I like to go swimming every week day :)

Abbi's Questions:
1. What is one of the best books you've read so far in 2012? Wonderland Creek by Lynn Austin & The Secret Keeper by Sandra Byrd.
2. What is your favorite genre? Christian Historical. Doesn't have to be a romance to make me happy :)
3. What is one author whose signature you REALLY want? Gilbert Morris! I want him to sign all 97 of the books I own by him...lol, just one would be great!
4. Do you write a journal? No, but I blog :)
5. How many books to you have that you haven't read? Too many to count. Hmm, I would estimate over a hundred and growing.
6. What country do you want to visit/revisit? I would love to visit Australia, or France.
7. Would you rather instantaneously receive any book you want for the rest of your life and live paycheck to paycheck or have an endless supply of money but not allowed to read ever again? I have never been rich in my life, so I would love to get great books, and then just put my skills of thriftiness to work! 
8. Early bird or Night owl? Early bird who wants to be a night owl.
9. Tea of Coffee? Neither. Milk!
10. A great movie quote? "No more rhymes, I mean it!" "Hey, anybody want a peanut?" ~ Princess Bride

My Questions :

What kind of book would just totally put you to sleep?
If you were to name a fictional couple in a story, what would be their names? Why?
If you could meet one past political leader, who would it be, and what would you tell them?
If you could have one superpower what would it be?
Do you like British TV?
If you could make one book into a movie, what would it be? Granted that it isn't a movie already.
If you could meet one fictional character, who would it be?
How do you think that you would be portrayed in a novel?
What is the most exciting thing that you are doing or have done this summer?
Is there anything you like to do at the same time that you are reading a book?

Who is tagged?

Megan @ Faery Tales are Real
Jen @ Book Reviews from a Booklover
Gwendolyn @ Gwendolyn Gage ~ Serving Through Words
Patricia @ It's Time to Read Mamaw
Kara @ My Thoughts and Books
Jody @ Not So 31
Sarah Elizabeth @ oh, restless bird
Rachel @ Thoughts from a Complusive Reader
Rosie @ The Writings of Rosie
Amber @ snidbits

Short-Straw Bride by Karen Witemeyer ~ Review ~ Loved this book!

Short-Straw Bride
My Review: An entertaining book, with an abundance sweet romantic tension!

Meredith Hayes has loved Travis Archer since he rescued her as a child from a ruthless steel trap. Now, a few years later when Meredith overhears a plan to burn the  reclusive Archer brothers off of their property, she knows that she has to warn them. But what starts out as an act of goodwill quickly escalates to a sticky situation where the Archers are drawing straws to see who will marry her. Can a marriage of what seems to be of convenience become a marriage of love?

Where to start? First of all I loved this book, from the first page to the last. Filled with humor, and an atmosphere that hums with sweet romantic tension, Short-Straw Bride swept me off my feet and off to another place.

The characters were fantastic, I loved how each of the characters had their own little quirk, that made them not only memorable, but highly unique and engaging. Travis was a terrific, very masculine hero, who had a few problems translating what he was thinking in his head to what he said or did, making for a few misunderstandings. Meri, was a lovable leading lady, feisty, and full of fire and determination. And I absolutely loved the way that Travis and Meri interacted, with respect, hope, wit, passion, and love.

The pages of this book turned so smoothly, and I was so absorbed in the story that I didn't notice how far I'd gotten in the book until to my horror, I found that it was almost over! I am definitely excited to find out what Ms. Witemeyer next book will be about! Short-Straw Bride a wonderful book that you won't want to miss!

Thank you so much to Ms. Witemeyer who graciously gave me a copy of Short-Straw Bride for this review :)


The Guardian Duke by Jamie Carie ~ Review

The Guardian Duke: A Forgotten Castles Novel

Lucie's Review: Definitely the beginning of something...

Alexandria Featherstone's parents have been missing for over a  year, and suddenly she finds herself the ward of Duke of St. Eatson. Alexandria is desperate to find her parents, so she writes to the Duke to ask for support. Letters go back and forth between the two, but what will they ever meet each other face to face?

In my mind this book ended up being much more of a beginning, than a stand alone novel. It had plenty of intrigue and mystery. I liked many of the side characters and Gabriel, but I kind of found myself not liking Alexandria all that much.

I liked how the characters were pretty well developed and Gabe was a fresh hero, a sort of perfectionist, with plenty of brains--maybe even too smart for his own good! But to further explain why I didn't like Alexandria, was because she claimed to be a Christian, and to pray, but she was all too comfortable lying at the tip of a hat and choosing her own way. I will definitely be looking forward to some spiritual growth from her in the next book :)  I mean, I did sympathize with her to some extent, but not as much as I would like to have.

There were plenty of twists in the story, and mystery that kept me reading. So basically I will say that this was a somewhat frustrating book for me, because I felt that this was more of a beginning, but I hope to remedy that by reading the next book. Because I do want to find out what happens next! It was a quick read, I read it in less than a day, but it left me somewhat unsatisfied. So don't read this book unless you plan on reading the next two, as well!

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!

    Swipe by Evan Angler ~ Team Novel Teen Blog Tour & Review!


    My Review: An absorbing read, that sucked me into another world!

    What might it be like to be a teenager living in the future? I have no idea, but it makes for a grand adventure!

    When I read the prologue I wasn't completely sure that I'd like this book, but after I'd read the first chapter I knew Swipe would be amazing, and it didn't disappoint. Riveting, with a huge dose of mystery, set in the future, in an America where the people are split into two groups, the Marked, and the Markless.

    The characters were so well developed, and I immediately latched onto Logan as a wonderful hero, who through no fault of his own, find himself  in a crazy situations hunted by unknown forces.

    What an adventure! Lots of action, suspense and mystery that kept me engaged throughout. The crazy thing is that Swipe is only the beginning!

    Overall, a wonderful beginning to a cool new series. And I have the feeling that the next books will be even more intense! To me this book really felt like a beginning, it hinted at some upcoming revelations yet to come, that I am eagerly awaiting. What I really liked about this book was how there were a ton of secrets, and the author kept me engaged without doing a huge reveal, but dropping very small tidbits, that left me with even more questions than before! An action-packed novel, sure to have you hanging in suspense!

    I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, through Team Novel Teen. Thank you!

    About the Book:
    Everyone gets the Mark. It gives all the benefits of citizenship. Yet if getting the Mark is such a good thing, then why does it feel so wrong?
    Set in a future North America that is struggling to recover after famine and global war, Swipe follows the lives of three kids caught in the middle of a conflict they didn’t even know existed. United under a charismatic leader, every citizen of the American Union is required to get the Mark on their 13th birthday in order to gain the benefits of citizenship.
    The Mark is a tattoo that must be swiped by special scanners for everything from employment to transportation to shopping. It’s almost Logan Langly’s 13th birthday and he knows he should be excited about getting the Mark, but he hasn’t been able to shake the feeling he’s being watched. Not since his sister went to get her Mark five years ago . . . and never came back.
    When Logan and his friends discover the truth behind the Mark, will they ever be able to go back to being normal teenagers? Find out in the first book of this exciting series that is Left Behind meets Matched for middle-grade readers.

    Check out Mr. Angler's website: http://www.evanangler.com/

    Buy the book through this link to help Team Novel Teen : http://www.amazon.com/dp/140031836X/ref=as_li_ss_til?tag=wwwteenageaut-20&camp=0&creative=0&linkCode=as4&creativeASIN=140031836X&adid=1WX9XXAX58BJN68MK9FX

    Be sure to check out the other great stops on this tour!

    ADD LibrarianBlooming with BooksThe Book FaeBook Nook 4 YouBookworm ReadingBooks I RecommendChristian Book Review BlogCTF DevourerFiction FireJill WilliamsonLabor Not in VainManiacal BookwormMy Story ShelfOh, Restless BirdThe Pen and ParchmentReviews by JaneShadow Writer World

    The First Escape : The Doppleganger Chronicles by G. P. Taylor ~ Review

    The First Escape (The Dopple Ganger Chronicles, #1)
    My Review: I am going to start off and just say that I was kinda disappointed. While, I loved the layout and the way this book was a mix of comic book and chapter book, with alot of artistic quirks, I just found this book too dark and creepy. This is not something I would give to a child, neither could I enjoy it because I found the illustrations rather disturbing.

    I also will note that I thought the children were more than a little rude, especially in the beginning.

    I really liked the idea of doing a children's book in this format, a sort of hip comic/book type deal, and I think that it would be great to see more books with this format because I do believe there is an appeal for this type of stuff.

    So overall, I am sad to say that I did not like this book. And just could find no enjoyment in it's depths :/

    I got this book at the public library, and was under no obligation to review this book.


    What I'm Reading ~ Weekend 6/22-24/12

    Short-Straw Bride

    Sorry, I didn't post one of these last week, but I have come to the conclusion that I will do these kind of posts in more moderation in the future. Mostly because I don't have the time, but I love to hear from you, so don't misunderstand me here :)

    Let's get on to the books!

    I have been dying to get to Short-Straw Bride forever! And I am happy to say that I am loving it! And might be done with it by the time the post goes up!
    And if you don't know what it's about then here's the blurb:

    No one steps on Archer land. Not if they value their life. But when Meredith Hayes overhears a lethal plot to burn the Archer brothers off their ranch, a twelve-year-old debt compels her to take the risk.

    Fourteen years of constant vigilance hardens a man. Yet when Travis Archer confronts a female trespasser with the same vivid blue eyes as the courageous young girl he once aided, he can't bring himself to send her away. And when an act of sacrifice leaves her injured and her reputation in shreds, gratitude and guilt send him riding to her rescue once again.

    Four brothers. Four straws. One bride. Despite the fact that Travis is no longer the gallant youth Meredith once dreamed about, she determines to stand by his side against the enemy that threatens them both. But will love ever be hers? Or will Travis always see her merely as a short-straw bride?

    And I'm also in the midst of Swipe, a Christian teen dysotopian read by Evan Angler!

    Here's the blurb:

    Everyone gets the Mark. It gives all the benefits of citizenship. Yet if getting the Mark is such a good thing, then why does it feel so wrong?

    Set in a future North America that is struggling to recover after famine and global war, "Swipe" follows the lives of three kids caught in the middle of a conflict they didn't even know existed. United under a charismatic leader, every citizen of the American Union is required to get the Mark on their 13th birthday in order to gain the benefits of citizenship.

    The Mark is a tattoo that must be swiped by special scanners for everything from employment to transportation to shopping. It's almost Logan Langly's 13th birthday and he knows he should be excited about getting the Mark, but he hasn't been able to shake the feeling he's being watched. Not since his sister went to get her Mark five years ago . . . and never came back.

    When Logan and his friends discover the truth behind the Mark, will they ever be able to go back to being normal teenagers? Find out in the first book of this exciting series that is "Left Behind" meets "Matched" for middle-grade readers.

    Well, that's what I am reading this weekend.
    What are you reading?
    You know I'd love to hear about it ;)
    Have a great weekend!

    Mary Magdalene by Diana Wallis Taylor ~ Revell Blog Tour & Review

    Mary Magdalene

    My Review: A stunning book that brings the life of Jesus alive through the eyes of one of His most faithful followers.

    Mary is kidnapped as a young child, and sees her beloved father almost die before her eyes. Nightmares haught her of that day, and voices tell her that she is not good enough to live, that she holds others back. All she wants, is to be free. What kind of life can she have? What about love, or most importantly of all who will refresh her tired soul?

    Ms. Taylor tells the story of Mary Magdalene in a fresh, riveting, way that touches the heart. In this book I got to see Mary Magdalene in a different way and get to see a glimpse of what her life might have been like. I think that Ms. Taylor did a fantastic job of bringing her to life, and I thought she handled the portraying of Jesus perfectly, sticking very, very close to the Scriptures.

    I really liked how this tale imagined what Mary life might have been like before she met Jesus. And I thought that Nathan was a wonderful man, and I loved that even though he was a good man, he was still human.

    Overall, this book  is probably the best Biblical fiction I have ever read! I was intrigued from the very first page, and found it to be a very fast read. I loved how much the Bible was quoted exactly and how well researched this book was! This is one of those books that I approached not erally knowing what to expect or how much I would like it, and then I gave it a shot and I was a goner. I loved this book!

    “Available June 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

    I received this book from the publusher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!


    Rising Shadows by Ashley Townsend ~ Review

    Rising Shadows

    My Review: An action-filled adventure...in another time...

    Sarah and her sister, Lilly, are swept from their life in the present day to a medieval time though historic with a rich history, is not remembered by time. There Sarah meets a mysterious man in a green cloak, who fights silently for what is right. What adventures will Sarah experience in this land that time seems to have forgotten?

    Written in an engaging easy to read fashion, with accurately flowing, descriptions perfect for a fast paced novel. I really liked how the we got to see the many sides of The Green Shadow, and how he was something of an outwardly quiet and collected character, though on the inside he was just a normal guy. I liked how much action that the story contained, and how things really got going about halfway through.

    I kind of felt like this book should have either been longer or shorter, either one, because there were a few gaps that I would have liked a little more explanation, and there were times in the beginning especially that I felt could have been tighter. I was kinda disappointed when they sent Lilly home, because I thought she would have been a great part of the story and some sisterly conflict or something like that.

    Overall, I think this is a great new YA Christian Fiction book with lots of adventure, and romance, even deception and secret identities. I really enjoyed traveling back in time to another place, and I definitely think a sequel would be marvelous!

    You can purchase the book here: http://kirkdalepress.com/books/rising-shadows/
    I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review. Thanks!


    Lucy Come Home by Dave and Neta Jackson ~ Litfuse Blog Tour & Review

     My Review: Wow! So much more than the cover implies, the back cover description did not do this book justice at all.

    I was taken away in the early 1940's before WWII broke out and people were still recovering from the Great Depression. Times were tough, and Cindy Tucker finds out just how hard life can be when the death of her boss sends her off with the kind young man from the traveling carnival. The tale is interwoven with another from the present day, about Cindy, now Lucy, a homeless woman who happens upon a young woman and her family who need her. The two tales entwine into a wonderful tale of love and overcoming hardship through faith.

     I loved the characters in this book and being with them as they overcame the many challenges in their lives. I think my favorite part was the part set in the 1940's because it was more of a love story and it showed how the seed of Cindy/Lucy's faith had been planted. Things certainly weren't easy for her in any part of the story.
    Lucy Come Home was written in an easy to read fashion, that was both engaging and fit the story perfectly. The parts that were about Lucy in the present were in first person, while the past was in third person. I liked the realistic-ness of the tale and how things weren't easy. I think that Cindy and Bo might have been a little overboard with their trying to keep their identities a secret, but then I could see that jail would be a terrifying option and Bo was trying to keep them safe. I liked the human-ness of the characters and how they felt real, because they weren't perfect. Bo wasn't perfect, but he was a good guy.

    Overall this is a book I would definitely recommend, and even though I am not familiar with the Yada Yada Series' at all, I was able to really enjoy this book that stood very well on its own. I really liked the dogs in the story, Jigger and Dandy, and thought they were a great way to add a certain depth and tie some things together. This book is so different than how I first thought it would be, and y'all should totally check it out :)

    I received this book through Litfuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review. Thanks.

    About the Book: Fifteen-year-old Cindy worked long days beside her migrant worker family in Michigan's sugar beet fields in the early 1940s -- the "war years" -- until she met a dashing young man from a traveling carnival, bringing some joy and fun into her hard-scrabble life. But a tragic twist of fate -- and a dead field boss-- sent the two young people on the run, leaving behind family and everything she'd ever known.

    Lucy Tucker, the crotchety old bag lady from the popular Yada Yada House of Hope series, is a veteran of Chicago streets and not about to give up her independence, even as she approaches her 80th birthday.

    Until, that is, a young displaced woman with her gentle aging mother and a dog named Dandy seem to need her -- unsettling the secretive Lucy, who doesn't let anyone get too close. But just when it seems her past is catching up with her to bring her in out of the cold... Lucy disappears again. How these two tales intersect and intertwine between past and present gradually shines light into the dark corners of Lucy's murky past. But... why won't Lucy come home?

    About the Authors:
    Dave and Neta Jackson are award-winning authors living in the Chicago area where their parallel novels from the Yada Yada House of Hope and Harry Bentley series are set.

    As a husband/wife writing team, Dave and Neta Jackson are enthusiastic about books, kids, walking with God, gospel music, and each other! Together they are the authors or coauthors of over 100 books.

    Visit http://www.daveneta.com for more info.

    Please check out all the other great stops on this tour:


    World History - Observations and Assessments from Creation to Today by James P. Stobaugh ~ Review

    World History: Observations & Assessments from Creation to Today

    My Review: The best history curriculum I have ever done!

    Engaging, fascinating, and well written. A history book that really caught and kept my attention. I have struggled with finding a good curriculum for World History, because often even the Christian ones would stress evolution as a fact, which would instantly tune me out. But this course relates history in an anything but dry way focusing on making the student comprehend what they are learning and there isn't any evolution!

    This text book includes Bible accounts as history and not only gives a history of many civilizations but a study on what their worldviews were and America's beliefs today. It effortlessly expresses a solid Christian worldview. I also liked how the assignments focused on making sure that I understood what I had just read instead of tons of questions and tests.

    Overall a book that I would highly recommend for homeschoolers. This course covers from Mesopotamia to present day, I loved how it worked on cultivating a Christian worldview, so there was a lot on events that shaped how we live today. A wonderful that will grow your student's understanding of history and the world around us. I think this would be a great resource for students who, like me do a lot of reading and are already pretty well informed about history, but need to fill a few gaps. This course was perfect for me!

    I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!

    Chameleon by Jillian Kent ~ FIRST Wild Card Blog Tour & Review

    My Review: A delightfull regency era novel, with a dash of dark mystery.

    Enter a whole new world full of romance, chaperones, murder, and deceptive charm. Victoria is a young woman full of innocence, with an eye for observation, quick mind for thinking.

    The mystery element of this book definitely added a darker edge to it, because the rest of the tale had a sort of Austen feel too it.

    This might just be me, but I felt there were times when the book moved too slowly for my preferences and I felt like the book could have been a few pages shorter.

    Overall this was a lovely book, that though part of a series works wonderfully as a stand alone. This is a book that will please those who are both mystery lovers and the regency fans!

    I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!

    It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

    You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

    Today's Wild Card author is:

    and the book:

    Realms (May 15, 2012)

    ***Special thanks to Althea Thompson | Publicity Coordinator, Charisma House | Charisma Media for sending me a review copy.***


    Jillian Kent has been a member of American Christian Fiction Writers for several years. She has also been a member of Romance Writers of America for 20 years and a member of The Beau Monde, Kiss of Death, and Faith, Hope, and Love specialty chapters of RWA. With a master’s degree in social work, Jillian is employed as a counselor for nursing students, which reflects within the pages of her first novel, Secrets of the Heart, which won the 2009 Inspiration for Writers contest and was a finalist in the Daphne du Maurier; the Noble Theme; and Faith, Hope, and Love’s Touched by Love contests.

    Visit the author's website.


    Lady Victoria Grayson has always considered herself a keen observer of human behavior, but when she finds herself involved in a sinister plot targeting the lords of Parliament she is forced to question how much anyone can really know about another human being.

    Product Details:
    List Price: $13.99
    Paperback: 304 pages
    Publisher: Realms (May 15, 2012)
    Language: English
    ISBN-10: 1616384964
    ISBN-13: 978-1616384968


    We should come home from adventures, and perils, and discoveries every day with new experience and character.


    London, 29 March 1818

    ST. JAMES PARK loomed in front of them, shrouded in a heavy mist that created difficulty for horse and driver as the coach and four maneuvered its way into the park.

    Inside the vehicle Victoria leaned toward the window, straining to see the outline of trees. "Such a disappointment," she sighed. "This is not what I expected my very first morning in London. I'd so hoped to see more on the ride through the park, something exciting to tell Devlin when we get to his home."

    "Don't despair, my lady." Nora, her maid, pulled a heavy shawl tighter about her shoulders. "'Tis sure to be the same mist that abounds in Yorkshire. This nuisance will lift eventually. It always does."

    Victoria patted the sleek head of her dog. "Even Lazarus grows bored." She marveled at her best friend, a behemoth of a mastiff, as he lowered his bulk to the floor of the coach with a loud groan and laid his head across her slipper-covered feet, creating a comfortable warmth. He'd been with her for years, and she couldn't leave him behind. The poor dear would cry himself to sleep every night.

    Victoria allowed the clip-clop of the horses’ hooves and Nora’s penchant for humming songs to lull her into a light sleep. Nora’s humming had comforted her all those years she’d been sick at Ravensmoore. While everyone else lived their busy lives out around her, she’d done little but survive, taking comfort in the small things that brought her joy.

    A sudden crash caused the coach door to vibrate. Victoria screamed and bolted upright as Lazarus pressed his nose and giant paws against the carriage window. A low growl rumbled in his throat.

    She grabbed the dog by the collar. Heart pounding, she turned to

    Nora. “What was that?”

    “Highwaymen!” Nora’s hand crept to her neck, and fear filled her eyes.

    The coachman drew the horses to a halt and opened the top hatch. “I fear I may have run someone down, my lady, but in this fog I can’t tell.”

    “We must find out at once. Someone may be hurt.” Victoria threw open the door, and Lazarus bounded into the mist. “Lazarus! Find!” She called after him, but he was already well on his way. She stepped from the coach, nearly tripping in her haste.

    “Wait, my lady,” Nora cried. “’Tis not safe. Come back!”

    The driver’s voice echoed through the mist. “You’ll lose your way, my lady. Stop where you are.”

    But the warning wasn’t necessary. Victoria could hear Lazarus snuffling the ground someplace nearby. She bit her lip and told her- self to be brave, even as her heart slammed against her chest.

    At the same time Lazarus let out a warning bark, the mist shifted. Victoria’s hand clamped over her mouth.

    A man lay on his side only a few feet in front of her.

    She shouted back to the coach. “I’ve found him! I need help.” She dropped to her knees and touched his shoulder. He didn’t move.


    She touched his arm and gently shook it. “Sir, are you conscious? Are you injured?” But before she could investigate further, strong arms lifted her and turned her away from the sight. She assumed it was Mr. Smythe, the carriage driver.

    “This is not something a lady should see,” the man said.

    But as he turned her from the body, she caught a glimpse of the man’s head. She gasped. There was just enough light to see streaks of blood upon one deathly pale cheek.

    “We hit him,” she cried. “The coach—” She lifted her head expecting to see the kind eyes of Mr. Smythe and met the warm, brilliant, gray eyes of a stranger. “Who . . . who are you? Who is he? Did we kill him?” She buried her face in her rescuer’s shoulder to rid her mind of the sight.

    “It does not appear so, my lady,” he said, his voice low and comforting.

    He deposited her inside the coach. Before she could speak, Lazarus bounded in next to her, rocking the vehicle precariously. She patted his head to calm him, and when she looked up at the man again, she saw only icy gray eyes and a rigid jaw line.

    She studied those eyes momentarily and heard Nora say, “You poor dear. What is it that you saw?”

    “Not the sight any young woman should witness, miss,” the stranger said. “But I believe I prevented her from viewing the worst of the man’s injuries.” He hesitated, then added, “This was no fault of the driver. Take care of this young woman. I’ll get help for the gentleman. Carlton House is nearby.”

    “Nonsense,” Victoria whispered. “Use the coach. Our driver will take you.”

    He nodded and bowed. “You’re very kind.”

    She wondered if it had been her imagination or if his eyes fre- quently switched from an icy gray coolness to a warm molten gray


    in only moments.. She wondered what this meeting might have been like under different circumstances.

    “Be still,” Nora said. “You’ve had a shock.”

    She heard the stranger and Mr. Smythe lifting the injured man to the driver’s seat. “God have mercy,” the driver said.

    “I’ll show you to Carlton House through this heavy fog. He can get the help he needs there. Who am I indebted to?”

    “I’m taking Lady Victoria Grayson and her maid to the lady’s brother.”

    “And that would be?” “Lord Ravensmoore, sir.”

    They approached Carlton House a few minutes later. Victoria clutched the edge of the seat, attempting to recover from what had happened and what she’d witnessed. As if he understood, Lazarus licked her hand. The coach came to a halt.

    The fog still lay heavy on the ground. Victoria could barely make out the two figures moving toward the door and into the palace. But even as their images faded, her thoughts returned to the stranger who’d lifted her away from the bleeding man and carried her back to the coach. The stranger with strong arms and fascinating gray eyes.

    Victoria found her strength as the fog lifted and patches of sun- light appeared through the trees, dappling the ground with their shadows. London came alive. Though her curiosity remained keen, she turned her thoughts to her brother and kept her mind on the joy it would be to see him again. He’d only been absent from their home at Ravensmoore for two months, but it seemed far longer.

    She stared in unabashed awe at the sea of activity that sur- rounded them as their coach merged with others, making its way through the muddy, rutted streets. The crowded sidewalks teemed with people of all classes. Women in brilliant gowns of color swirled


    past street urchins and beggars, meshing into an ever-shifting tap- estry of humanity.

    She’d stepped into a world bigger than York, a world she’d only dreamed about. Victoria leaned back against the banquette and sighed. “Now that I can see it properly, London is magnificent.”

    “I think it best if you have your brother examine you when we arrive, my lady Victoria. You know how he worries. You know how I worry. ’Tis a blessing to have a brother who is both a lord and physician.”

    Victoria turned away from the window and assessed her maid. “I am no longer an invalid, Nora, and well you know it.” She lifted her chin a notch. “I’m stronger than either you or my brother realize.” Nora met her gaze, her brow furrowed with worry. Victoria lifted her hand to dismiss the words of warning she knew were sure to come. But Nora, having been her constant companion the past eleven years and knowing her so well, caught Victoria’s hand.

    “Child, you’re pale and weary from our travels and that horrid incident in the park. ’Tis a good thing we’ve made this journey, but I think your brother will agree with me that you need to rest.”

    “I’ve been resting my entire life. It’s time to live and catch up on the adventures that God has in store for me. How many times did you read Jeremiah twenty-nine, eleven to me throughout the years? Did you not believe those words yourself?”

    Nora nodded, keeping her lips firmly pressed together in an obvious effort to curb her tongue. A difficult feat, Victoria under- stood and appreciated.

    As if sensing the tension and hoping to break up an ensuing argument, Lazarus nuzzled and nudged Victoria’s attention away from her maid and back toward the window to watch a group of young boys chasing each other down the street. He barked and strained against the coach door. Victoria couldn’t move him from his place of entertainment if she’d tried.


    “Such a window hound you are, Lazarus.” Victoria rubbed her hand over his big, sleek head, ruffling his ears. “If you wanted my attention, you would more readily share your window.” She smiled and turned her gaze toward the window on the opposite side. Men and women hawked their wares and called to them in hopes of making a profit. “You can do no wrong in my eyes, Lazarus. If you hadn’t been with us earlier, that poor man might still be lying in the park.” She tried to shake off the sense of dread that seeped through her pores. She refused to allow the upset of the morning to ruin her reunion with her brother.

    “I’m sorry, Nora.” She studied the dark-haired, blue-eyed woman who was eleven years her senior. Nora had always seemed more of an aunt to her than a maid and companion.

    “You’re forgiven.” A smile quirked the corners of her mouth. “You really are too pretty to continue caring for me much longer.

    Why is it you haven’t yet married?”

    Now Nora chose to gaze out the window to escape further inquiry. “I will when the time and the suitor are right.”

    Victoria ended that line of questioning, and they rode in com- panionable silence the rest of the way, each lost in thought.

    The busy streets gave way to quieter and more prestigious ave- nues as they made their way to Grosvenor Square and her brother’s London townhome. The quality of the air improved as they moved farther from the central streets and into the areas of the upper crust. The coach slowed and then pulled to a halt in front of number three, Devlin’s home.

    “I cannot wait another moment.” Grabbing the handle of the coach door, Victoria stepped out onto the curb. Lazarus bounded out after her and onto the street.

    “Good heavens! It’s a bear,” an elderly woman said, clinging to her husband.

    Victoria smothered a grin. “He’s quite harmless.”


    The couple hurried away from the dog.

    Nora bolted from the coach and grabbed Lazarus by the collar, holding him fast as he strained to make chase.

    “Thank you, Nora. Just in time.”

    Victoria gathered her blue velvet traveling skirts and ran up the five steps to the entrance. She reached for the gilded knocker, hesi- tated, and then, after adjusting her gloves, started to grab the handle instead. But the door opened before her hand reached it.

    Devlin’s butler appeared. A smile lit his face when he saw Victoria. “Lady Victoria,” he said, and then executed a most noble bow. When he straightened, his pleasure at seeing her was still apparent. “Welcome to London.”

    “Henry!” Victoria said. “It is good to see you. Do you mind taking Lazarus? He adores you almost as much as I do.”

    “For you I would take Lazarus on a walk to the ends of the earth,”

    he said with cheerful amiability.

    “Who is it that you are taking for a walk, Henry?” Devlin appeared in the doorway, tall and handsome with that brotherly smile of his and assessing green-eyed gaze. “Ah, there she is. My favorite imp. What took you so long? I expected you yesterday.” He held out his arms. “Are you well?”

    “I believe so. We stopped at a nearby inn last evening. The rain made travel a bit difficult.” Victoria burrowed deep into her brother’s warm, comforting embrace. “I’ve missed you, Dev,” she whispered into his chest and squeezed him tight. “I’ve missed you so much.”

    “And I, you.” Devlin held her at arm’s length. “It’s good to see you. Now, come in and tell me all about your journey and how my wife is doing at home without me.” He looked up at Nora. “Has she behaved herself on this trip, Nora?”

    Her companion grinned. “Nothing out of the ordinary for Lady

    Victoria, yer lordship.”


    “That speaks volumes.” Devlin gently pinched his sister’s cheek. “Henry, I believe Nora would love to hear about town.”

    “Of course, yer lordship. Welcome to London, Nora. Would you care to accompany me? And allow me to take Lazarus off your hands.”

    “Bless you for that, Henry. He wears me down too quickly.” “Come along, Lazarus.” He accepted the leash from Nora and

    quickly fastened it to the dog’s collar.

    Nora nodded. “It will help me find my balance again after a long, bumpy, and perilous ride in the coach. I’ll catch you up with all that’s happened back at Ravensmoore.”

    Devlin started to enter the house with Victoria and then turned back to Henry. “And Henry,” he called, “don’t forget to feed the beast before you return him to Victoria.”

    “Feed him, sir? And just who should be the sacrifice? Lazarus has a shine to his eyes, and I’m thinking it is for me.”

    “Get creative, man. Start with Cook.”

    “Now, there’s a right smart answer,” Henry said and laughed. “Mrs. Miller will faint dead away.”

    Devlin grinned, a wicked glint in his green eyes. “If Cook has the nerve to faint, let Lazarus nibble at her.”

    “Devlin!” Victoria feigned horror. “What an outlandish thing to say.” She covered a grin. “That would bring her around faster than smelling salts.”

    She turned to watch Lazarus leading Henry and Nora down the street. Her thoughts fled to what might be happening at Carlton House. A shudder crept up her spine. She decided to wait to tell Devlin of her experience in the park. Guilt niggled, but she just wasn’t ready to divulge that bit of information. After all, her freedom was at stake. One thought of her in danger, and Devlin would ship her back to York before she got settled in. No doubt


    Nora would reveal all if she didn’t stop her maid when she returned from the walk.

    “Are you cold?” Devlin asked, assessing her carefully. “Come in. You must be exhausted.”

    “Not really. The ride was but a couple of hours.” “No adventures during your journey, Snoop?”

    She loved his pet name for her. She was more than a bit curious about everything life had to offer, and Devlin used her nickname more often than her given name. “Adventures? What could possibly happen on a two-hour ride into town?” She swallowed hard, hoping her expression didn’t give her away. She would tell him when the time was right.

    “Knowing you, just about anything.”

    “I promise to give you a full report.” Eventually. And as she stepped into her brother’s townhome, she wondered how she could discover more about her gray-eyed stranger and the bloodied man he’d taken to Carlton House.

    Jonathon Denning, Lord Witt, nearly collided with the guard on duty while carrying Lord Stone into Carlton House.

    “Send for the regent and his physician immediately,” he ordered. “There’s been an accident. I need a place where Lord Stone can be treated, and privacy is a must. Not a word of this leaves your lips. Do you understand?”

    The guard nodded and headed toward one of the pages standing nearby. “You heard Lord Witt. Be off with you, and hurry, Thomas.”

    Witt watched as the page fled down a long corridor.

    “Follow me, Lord Witt. We’ll take him upstairs to the guest lodg- ings. Allow me to carry him.”

    “I can manage,” Witt muttered. “Go, man. Lead the way, and make sure you choose a room that is not easily found.”


    The guard wasted no time, and after climbing to the second floor, Witt lay Stone on a four-poster bed surrounded by green drapes. Out of breath, Witt collapsed into a chair, mentally taking stock of all that had happened in the period of a mere half hour.

    The guard paled when he saw the severity of Lord Stone’s wounds. “Not a word. Remember that, or I’ll have your post. Now draw those drapes and leave. Send a decanter of brandy. I need a drink.

    Better yet, send two.”

    Witt sat in a chair near the bed and tried to think about what to do next, as the regent was sure to ask his opinion. He’d been a valued spy during the war, and the regent frequently asked his advice. He sat forward and rested his head in his hands. He’d simply gone out for an early morning walk before Parliament, heard the coach approaching, and scrambled to get out of the way before he was run down.

    The muffled sounds of an obviously disturbed dog had fired him to action. He ran a short distance through the mist and then had come upon a well-dressed lady, her massive dog, and Lord Stone. One look at the huge dog had almost caused him to retreat, but he couldn’t leave a young woman to deal with what he’d seen of Stone’s face.

    The driver had said the woman was Ravensmoore’s sister. Ironic, since he’d been keeping an eye on the “Lord Doctor” at Prinny’s request.

    Prinny, as the regent was known amongst the ton, didn’t know if he liked the idea of one of his lords working as a physician. A nobleman working a trade drew suspicion. What was the point? Although Ravensmoore’s reputation had been spotless when he’d come into his title, it was anticipated that he would leave the study of medicine to manage his estate. Instead he’d pursued this obses- sion that he referred to as a calling and allowed his man of affairs


    to run his estate when he was forced to be absent. Prinny wanted to know if there was more to it or if Ravensmoore was simply eccentric.

    He heard the unhappy growling of the regent and his doctor as they neared the suite of rooms. Witt steeled himself.

    “What in the name of all that is reasonable has caused this incon- venience?” roared Prinny when he burst through the outer sitting room. He was still steaming as he entered the bedroom with his physician in tow.

    Witt stood. “Your Royal Highness.” He bowed. “Lord Stone has been attacked. I found him in the park. He needs your physician’s immediate attention.”

    The overstuffed physician huffed. “I’ll decide what necessitates immediate attention, Lord Witt.”

    “Then I suggest you make the determination.” Witt nodded toward the bed. The physician hesitated.

    The regent said, “Get on with it. I’m busy today. For the love of good food, Parliament reconvenes this afternoon.”

    The physician huffed again and went to the bed, grabbing the drapes and pulling them back. “Great heavens. What’s happened to the man?” He opened the black bag he carried with him. “I’ll need a nursemaid.”

    Prinny then stepped closer to evaluate Stone’s condition himself. He sucked in a breath. “The poor devil! Get on with it, doctor. Do everything you can to save him.” The regent, visibly shaken, looked at Witt. “Tell me everything. What happened? We must find out who did this to Stone.”

    “Your Majesty.” The physician turned from the bed with a bloody missive in his shaking hand. “I found this pinned to his waistcoat. A warning.”

    “Who dares?” He snatched the paper away and read it. “Lord

    Witt, today’s session of Parliament must be canceled.” Witt arched a brow.


    Prinny handed him the blood-stained parchment.

    Witt read the note aloud. “‘You have been found guilty of con- spiring with sinful men for sinful purposes. I will now handle the situation as I see fit. Stone is only the first. Repent, you lords of par- liament.’ And it’s signed, ‘Lord Talon.’”

    “Curse this Lord Talon.” Prinny looked to Witt for direction. “We must decide the best course of action, and soon. No one has dared attack a member of Parliament since Bellingham assassinated our prime minister, and that was six years ago.”

    Ravensmoore came to mind, but Witt faltered for just a moment. No doubt the man was the best there was, and his skills badly needed. But his sister had only just arrived in London, and this sit- uation could put her and her brother in danger. An edge of uneasi- ness rippled down his back.

    “Witt,” the regent said. “What is your recommendation?”

    Witt took charge. “We must proceed with caution. Tell no one about the note. Not yet. And don’t say anything to anyone about the signature of this Lord Talon. I suggest we ask Lord Ravensmoore to join us immediately. Having a physician who is a peer can prove most helpful.”

    The regent paced and mumbled to himself, seemingly in a struggle to make a decision. Finally he said, “Send for him.”



    Through Rushing Water by Catherine Richmond ~ Review

    Through Rushing Water
    Lucie's Review: Hearts open and are challenged on the Dakota prairie.

    Sophia leaves her job as teacher at Vassar, to serve as a missionary to the Poncas. Sophia soon finds herself facing almost overwhelming challenges, as her heart opens to the Ponca people.
    And then there is Will, the quiet carpenter, who has a gentle spirit and has a genuine love for the Ponca people.
    A tale of a labor of love, and fighting for what is right.

    What a memorable read! I loved the natural progression of the relationships in this book and how this book focused more on the historical than the romance of the story. It really took me into the heart of the situation with the Poncas and their struggles with the Indian agents, and the missions. I loved how well developed all of the characters were even the smaller characters where thoroughly developed. The characters of the Poncas were well done as well. Also I never got the feeling in this book that all white people are evil or that the white people did everything right or wrong, I felt that this book authentically portrayed both sides of the struggle and how the main problems came from people thousands of miles away who know nothing of what was really going on.

    Sophia was an excellent main character, who felt very real and likable at the same time. Will was just amazing, and he just kept getting better all the time! Nettie, the preacher's mother was a real gem and was the sweetest lady, even though her son was to say the least not very sympathetic to the Ponca's plight. The young Ponca children that Sophia taught were well developed as well, some were super cute, and others were older and deeper.

    While this was more of a historical novel than I was expecting, I ended up totally loving it. Definitely deserving of 5 stars, with amazing characters and a sort of absence-makes-the-heart-grow-fonder kinda of love story. I will definitely be reading Catherine Richmond's next book after this!

    I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review. Thanks!


    Demolishing Supposed Bible Contradictions, Volume Two by Ken Ham, Bodie Hodge, Tim Chaffey & Others ~ Review

    Demolishing Supposed Bible Contradictions, Volume 2
    My Review: Have you every been confused about how two different passages referring to the same things can possibly fit together, or even wondered if the Bible got it wrong? If so, or even if you haven't, this book is for you.

    The multiple authors of this book answer answer forty questions clearing up some Biblical question marks, using the Bible, science, and literal root translation. The questions ranged from simple misunderstandings to tough and scientific questions, such as, "Do rabbits really 'chew the cud'?" The book dealt with both Old Testament and New Testament scriptures in an understandable comprehensive manner, that added both humor and logic. I thought I knew most of the stuff that would be covered in this book, but I was happily suprised to learn many new things.

    Our family used it as part of our family devotions, and it was a great addition! I highly recommend using it this way because the chapters are short and won't go over the heads of children 11 & up.

    Overall and wonderful read that is made into many short chapters so that it is easy to pick up and put down whenever you have a moment to spare, and that moment will definitely be worth your time!
    I highly recommend that you pick up this wonderful read that can also be a powerful tool.

    I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review. Thanks!


    Lady Anne's Quest by Susan Page Davis ~ Review

    Lady Anne's Quest
    My Review: An action filled western read!

    Lady Anne presses on in her search to find her long lost uncle David, in order to prevent her wicked cousin from inheriting the family estate. But someone else wants to stop her from finding her uncle, will she find him before it's too late?

    In my mind, this sequel was better than its predecessor! I loved how this story had so much more action. What made this one different was perhaps how the bad guys were more present and were definitely trying harder to stop Anne from finding her uncle. I liked how the relationship between Anne and Dan grew from sort of awkward, to a close companionship and romance where they could really depend upon each other.

    This is probably me just being picky, but I sometimes got a little mixed up with the two heroes having "D" names, there were times when I had to double check to make sure I was thinking of the right guy, but this might have all been just because I was reading so fast.

    Overall, a sweet action packed, western read with some great twists in the chase. I look forward to reading Millie and Davids story, considering how devious Millie was in this book! A entertaining read with wonderful setting!

    I received this ebook from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!


    Finally! Pictures From My Vacation!

    Y'all remember how I said I'd post some pictures of my trip? Well, here they are, though a bit late (hey, it hasn't been a week yet!). So here's a glimpse at my trip!

    Kittens in the hood
    Kittens & Cousins in the Loft

    Fun with the kittens.

    Aren't kittens cute?
    Just look at Rue's blue eyes!

    Brother looking artistic

    The dogs are ready to play!

    After a long ride.

    Brother looking artistic again.

    And again. I really like this one :)

    "Let's take pictures of each other taking pictures..."

    Taking pictures of people taking pictures.

    My pony, not the best picture...
    A better pic that makes her head look big...

    Yep, that's an outhouse, we actually used it :)
    Kinda looks pretty with the flowers in front LOL!

    In this one you can see the tree growing out of the outhouse.
    And I'll leave you with some flowers :)

    Besides everything pictured we rode horses everyday, getting fence-jumping cattle out from where they weren't supposed to be, playing soccer with Jake the soccer dog (the black border collie pictured above), drinking lots of Kool Aid, Playing cribbage, Playing Skippo, and throwing wet pine cones at each other...(don't ask).


    Waiting for Sunset by Eva Marie Everson ~ Revell Blog Tour & Review

    Waiting for Sunrise: A Cedar Key Novel
    Lucie's Review:

    Patsy is a woman with a troubled past, who struggled with depression. Patsy looks back on her life and what led her to the edge, remembering the ups and down alike.

    Written in a wonderfully readable style, Ms. Everson draws the reader effortlessly into the the life of Patsy Milstrap. And what a hard life it was, and that's what made continuing to pick up this book so hard, because it was so much of a downer. To a point I got sort of frustrated with Patsy, because she was surrounded by so many good people, and God had used so many situations in her life for good, though the path there was painful, yet she became so swallowed up by the depression. I really couldn't relate to Patsy that well, to me she just wasn't that likable for me, partially because of certain things that have happened in my life, and how I didn't like how she reacted to some of the things that happened to her. I just couldn't reconcile her taking her children for granted, and that frustrated me a lot!

    There were a lot of great characters around Patsy like her half-brother, her husband, her adoptive parents, and the lovely nurse, Gabby, who was with Patsy in the hospital, who were all wonderful people in her life. I guess for me what was really missing was more detail on Patsy's personal faith journey and how she finally came to God, after this entire journey it was kind of a let down for me though I can see how the author was trying to convey how, things were never really hunky-dorey.
    I think that the author did a wonderful job of bringing the turbulent time during which this book was set to life (1940's-1960's).

    Overall this was a totally mixed book for me, because it was so well written, but I felt like the way the book dealt with helping Patsy, was done in a very worldly manner, with lots of medication...which is really bad timing because I just read a book about the conscience numbing dangers of treating depression with pills, let me stop myself before I go into that! I also thought that this book has a very mature theme about it. So basically, this book was just not my type of book for so many reasons, and I personally never felt that it delved into the real depth that was sitting benneath the surface.

    I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review. Thanks.

    “Available June 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

    Glamorous Illusions by Lisa Tawn Bergren ~ Litfuse Blog Tour and Review

    My Review: Well rounded tale, with an excellent portrayal of class distinction in the years before WWI.

    I absolutely loved this book, with a setting and time period that is so in vogue right now, (think Downton Abbey), and a leading character that won my heart over from the start.
    When her father has a stroke, Cora's life changes forever in ways that she could never imagine in her wildest dreams, and I liked the way that she handled herself in the many tough situations that she had to endure.
    The characters were really well developed, and many were not straight up what I thought they were on first meeting them.
    I liked the quick and steady pace of the plot, and how parts of the story were told in first person by Cora, and others in third person by others, such as Wallace and Will.

    Overall, I think this is a book that I would most certainly recommend to fans of historical novels with a wonderful depth to them. And I loved going on the grand tour with Cora and her new found companions. Highly recommend!

    I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!

    About the Book:
    It was the summer of 1913, and Cora Kensington's life on the family farm has taken a dark turn. Not only are the crops failing, so is her father's health. Cora is carrying on, helping her mother run their Montana farm until a stranger comes to call, and everything changes. Cora then learns a secret that will radically change her future: she is the illegitimate daughter of a copper king who has come to claim her.

    Cora is invited to take the "Grand Tour" of Europe, a journey intended to finish a person's education, to solidify an understanding of ancient culture and contemporary refinement. As she travels from England to France with half-siblings she's never known, Cora encounters the blessings of the Kensington family name, as well as the curses. But when an unbidden love begins to form, she realizes the journey is only beginning.

    Faced with the challenge of accepting her father, new family, and the identity that comes with it, Cora also struggles to accept that she is also the daughter of the one true King-a Father who is the only One who can truly heal.

    About the Author:
    Lisa Tawn Bergren is the best-selling, award-winning author of over 30 books, with more than 1.5 million copies sold. She just finished writing a Colorado historical trilogy (the first book, Breathe, Sing and Claim), and has begun a teen series called River of Time.

    Lisa's time is split between managing home base, writing (including a fair amount of travel writing), consulting and freelance editing (with a little speaking here and there). She's married to Tim, a liturgical sculptor, graphic designer and musician. They have three kids-Olivia (15), Emma (12) and Jack (7).

    All five of the Bergrens make their home in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

    For more information on Lisa and to view other books written, please visit her website: http://lisatawnbergren.com

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