7.31.2023

High-Stakes Blizzard by Rebecca Hopewell // Review

Lucie's Review: 

Rain and David find themselves fighting for their survival in the wilderness, will that be what it takes to rekindle their love?

Rain doesn't know what her brother was involved in, but suddenly she has become a target of a killer and the only one who is there to help is her ex fiancé, David. This one took a little while to get into and the adventure all happens over a short period of a few days. One thing I noticed was that this was more addressing and rekindling their old relationship, as it all happened over a short period of time. I liked that Rain's family raised her and her brother in faith, and that she grew in learning to trust. 

An exciting wilderness survival adventure that has David and Rain racing against the bad guys and the weather. David is a strong and competent firefighter, he is very patient with Rain when I felt that she didn't always make most sense to me. There was plenty of tension, and it was a nice read. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.28.2023

Positively Penelope by Pepper Basham // Just Read

Positively Penelope JustRead Takeover + Review Blitz

Welcome to the Takeover + Review Blitz for Positively, Penelope by Pepper Basham hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

Positively, Penelope Title: Positively, Penelope 
Series: Skymar #2 
Author: Pepper Basham 
Publisher: Thomas Nelson 
Release Date: August 1, 2023
Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance

Told mostly through letters, texts, and email, this contemporary romance will charm its way into hearts as Penelope rescues a theater and discovers her true self in the process.

Penelope Edgewood is practically positive in every way, so when, fresh out of college, she is awarded a paid internship to help save a century-old theater on the island of Skymar, she jumps at the chance. After all, a crumbling theater needs the special touch of someone who reveres all things vintage and adores the stage. 

Unfortunately, not everything is as it seems at Darling House Theatre. Finances are in shambles, the local theater group is disenchanted, and the two brothers, Matt and Alec Gray, can’t seem to see eye-to-eye about how to run their theatrical business. So, of course, it’s the perfect place for Penelope to shine her own personal brand of sunshine. 

With a little help from GK, the person emailing her encouragement along the way, she puts all her heart into helping the Grays save Darling House. But between Matt’s ever-present skepticism, Alec’s tendency to treat Penelope a little too much like the “princess” she thinks she wants to be (until someone actually started treating her that way), a grandfather who is stuck in his grief, and a mysterious person stealing Penelope’s marketing ideas, she’s not sure her optimism is enough to make a happily-ever-after of her own story, let alone The Darling House’s. 

Between an adorable little girl, a matchmaker, a sea monster or two, and a copious amount of musical references, can Penelope draw enough confidence from her faith, her family, and her adoration of all things Julie Andrews, to find the thief and save the theater . . . without getting her heart broken in the process?

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Bookshop | Christianbook | BookBub

My Review:

An utterly delightful romantic comedy, with a determinedly optimistic heroine ready to tackle any challenge with faith, love, and pixie dust!

Penelope comes to Skymar to help a struggling local theater, and the burst of creativity and light that she brought to every situation. She is indefatigably positive, and I loved how she brings out the best in people inspiring them to hope again. Iris is so adorable! I loved the relationship between her and her siblings, as they communicate through text, email, and phone calls throughout the story. Luke is definitely still a favorite, and I'm interested to see how his story will play out as he is a man of few words. 

This was such a fun read, filled with heart, a grumpy-sunshine romance, and great musical theater references. I loved Penelope's zest for life, and how she shares it with others. Matt is a man who has gone through a lot in the past few years, but he has a heart of gold and is an excellent father. 

Overall, a completely enjoyable addition to the series with heartwarming new characters, and engaging plot,  written by an author who knows her audience well. I loved the humor, excellent chemistry between Penelope and Matt. Highly recommend, and can't wait for Luke's story!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

More Books in this Series

Authentically Izzy Loyally Luke


About the Author

Pepper Basham

Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance “peppered” with grace and humor. Writing both historical and contemporary novels, she loves to incorporate her native Appalachian culture and/or her unabashed adoration of the UK into her stories. Pepper's novel, Hope Between the Pages, was a 2022 Christy award finalist. She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC, where she is the wife of a fantastic pastor, mom of five great kids, a speech-language pathologist, and a lover of chocolate, jazz, hats, and Jesus.

Connect with Pepper by visiting pepperdbasham.com to follow her on social media or subscribe to email newsletter updates.


Tour Giveaway

(1) winner will receive a print copy of Authentically, Izzy, $20 Amazon gift card, and a Peter Pan mug!

Positively, Penelope JustRead Giveaway

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight July 26, 2023 and lasts through 11:59 PM EST on August 2, 2023. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

Enter Giveaway


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

7.27.2023

The Greatest Book Ever by Teresa Joyelle Krager, illustrated by Jesus Lopez // Review


My Review: 

A brightly colored and beautifully illustrated book that teaches children about The Greatest Book Ever. 

Through rhyming verses and lovely accompanying illustrations that vividly show the importance of Scripture as the Word of God. I loved how this book encourages children to turn to Scripture and read it for themselves as it points us to the Savior. 

A lovely book to share with the young ones in your life, highly recommend!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.26.2023

Like Honey for the Bones by Brandy Heineman // Just Reads

Like Honey for the Bones JustRead Blog Tour

Welcome to the Blog Tour for Like Honey for the Bones by Brandy Heineman, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

Like Honey for the Bones

Title: Like Honey for the Bones
Author:
Brandy Heineman
Publisher: Independently Published
Release Date:
July 24, 2023
Genre:
Christian Split-time Romantic Mystery

TWO HEARTS BROKEN ALONG THE SAME JAGGED EDGE MAKE A GRISLY DISCOVERY DEEP IN THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY 

Present Day. Solveig Borja fled Virginia to escape the guilt of one reckless night, and once she settles the family estate, she’s Norway-bound and never looking back. Meanwhile, Kyle Benton has come seeking asylum from past sins—which Solveig shatters even as their hopeless romance blooms. But when they discover a skeleton at Rice Caverns, its century-old mystery holds startling links to the here-and-now.  

1919. The Great War is won. Gussie Rice longs for her beau's return from France, until she learns he’s confined at a stateside hospital and her closest confidant is part of the secret. Her bid for love sparks a confrontation that ricochets through time... 

Bad blood and escalating threats swirl around Solveig, and Kyle’s new life proves no haven from the old with his brother's killer trolling the shadows. As the past rears up, the cavern’s hidden places beckon with power to light their hope or to swallow them in utter darkness.

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookBub

Review: A split time line novel of love and loss, full of secrets and rich Norwegian heritage. 


The story starts in the present day with Solveig Borja, and it took awhile to get into because of the way that it begins by plunging the reader right into the thick of things in a way that made me feel like I was missing some context for a while. The historical story was done in a similar fashion, but I really admired Harvey and how he held out hope for Gussie, being loyal and true throughout, he was probably my favorite part of the book. 

There is a lot going on in both timelines, plenty of mystery, secrets, and turning points. I liked that it had a solid message of God's faithfulness and salvation. A novel that encapsulates a lot of ground, secrets and heartache as it follows two women separated by time. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

About the Author

Brandy Heineman

Brandy Heineman is a book hoarder, cat herder, and Christian author of dual timeline novels. Antique shops and digital newspaper archives top her list of happy places, and she fuels her day job in marketing and life as a novelist with endless cups of tea. Brandy has served as president of the North Georgia chapter of ACFW and lives in Metro Atlanta with her husband, Michael.

Connect with Brandy by visiting brandyheineman.com to follow her on social media and sign up for email updates.


Tour Giveaway

(3) winners will win a signed, print copy of Like Honey for the Bones and $25 VISA gift card!

Like Honey for the Bones JustRead Tours giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight July 24, 2023 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on July 31, 2023. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to JustRead Publicity Tours Giveaway Policies.

Enter Giveaway


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

7.25.2023

Heartless Heirs by Marcykate Connolly // Review

My Review: 

Picking up right where the previous book left off, Aissa and Zandria must find a way to bridge the widening rift between the Magi and Technocrats as tensions rise and rebellion brews. 

A satisfying conclusion to this adventure packed duology. This second book explores more of the magic and history between the two peoples, as well the relationship between Aissa and her sister. It was also fun meeting new characters that added depth to their world. 

It took awhile for me to get into this book, but that is mostly my fault for going years between books. Though it felt that most of the story was spent plotting and preparing, while gathering information. 

Overall, an engaging read with likable heroines, I liked how this book explores more of the magic system and the secrets behind the heartless. A romantic fantasy adventure and solid conclusion. 


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.24.2023

Alaskan Avalanche Escape by Darlene Turner // Review

Lucie's Review: 

A fast paced race for survival finds mountain expert Jayla Holt depending on a man who let her down in the past, when an avalanche turns out not to be a result of natural causes. 

There is a lot going on in this engaging read, with strong main characters and a plot that kept me on my toes. I especially liked the dog, Hercules, who has a few tricks of his own, up his sleeve. I liked the compelling backstories, as well as growing level of trust between Jayla and Bryson. 

A satisfying adventure from beginning to end, with great tension and plenty of action! Definitely worth picking up!


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.21.2023

Cherishing the Cowgirl by Jody Hedlund // Review

My Review: 

Sparks fly in this forced-proximity, grumpy-sunshine Western romance full of adventure!

Charity Courtney reluctantly accepts Hudson Vanderwater's offer of help to save the place that she and her sisters call home. Charity is the oldest of the sisters and as such shoulders much of the responsibility for keeping a roof over their heads, but when the bank threatens to foreclose on their boarding house she finds she has no other choice. I admired her bravery in trying new things, and standing up in the face of rumors. 

This was a fun romantic read, with great romantic chemistry between Hudson and Charity. Though I think that my favorite character had to be Ronald. Ronald was an intuitive man, he always had Hudson's back, but also didn't shy away from telling him like it was. 

Overall, story and loved the fast moving plot, and adventure mixed with the romance. Highly enjoyable! It was fun getting to know the Courtney Sisters better, and I can't wait to see what is in store for Felicity and Patience!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

*All of the books in the Colorado Cowgirls series are sweet, closed-door romances with plenty of sizzle. The inspirational themes are light, and the romance is the main focus of the books.

7.20.2023

The Master Craftsman by Kelli Stuart // Review

My Review: 

A captivating read the brings to life the history behind the stunning Faberge Eggs.

Before reading this book I'd only heard of the eggs in passing and in regard to the Romanov family, but it was amazing to learn the rich history behind the craftsman who made the eggs. The story is told in a split time style, one account from the perspective of modern treasure hunters and the other follows Carl Faberge through the years leading up to the Russian Revolution. 

Ava has never been close to her treasure hunting father, but a deathbed reunion and the glimmering promise of a last adventure has Ava and a team on an adventure spanning the globe. Ava's side of the story reminded me a little of National Treasure with the rich lessons in history and suspenseful skirting the lines of legality. I liked learning along with Ava and her team, as well as seeing her come to understand her father's passion for what he did. 

Overall, an engaging read rich in history, and captivatingly telling the story of the treasured eggs, with a compelling story of family ties. While reading this book I kept stopping to google the eggs referenced, and I can see why this is such an engrossing topic! While a clean read, I will briefly mention that it isn't really a Christian read as I expected by the publisher. A well done historical read that definitely inspired me to look more into the topic! 


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.19.2023

Hannah: Mother of a Prophet by H. B. Moore // Review

My Review: 

A beautiful fictionalization of Hannah's story, and later Samuel's rise to High Priest of Israel. 

Engaging and heartfelt re-telling of Hannah, mother of Samuel. Beautifully telling of her heartache and great faith, I admired Hannah so much for how she bore Peninnah's cruelty while her own heart was aching so. The author does a great job of capturing the longing and heartbreak in Hannah's life. 

Only the first quarter of this book tells Hannah's story though, and I was happily surprised to read about Samuel and his struggles in the house of Eli, as well as the story of a beautiful young woman tainted by her father's sin. 

Overall, a compelling and rich read that brought one of my favorite Biblical heroes to life in an even more heartfelt way. 


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.18.2023

How Sweet It Is by Andrea Christenson // Just Read

How Sweet It Is JustRead Blog Tour

Welcome to the Blog Tour for How Sweet It Is by Andrea Christenson, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Book

How Sweet It Is by Andrea Christenson

Title: How Sweet It Is 
Series:
Fox Bakery #1
Author:
Andrea Christenson
Publisher:
Sunrise Publishing
Release Date:
July 18, 2023
Genre:
Christian Contemporary Romance

Sometimes the sweetest moments in life are made from the most familiar and ordinary ingredients. 

Robin Fox is living out her dreams working in a gourmet bakery in Paris. She thought she’d live there forever, but when her relationship with her boss sours, those dreams crumble. She finds herself back home in Deep Haven, Minnesota, caring for her grandparents’ rundown bakery while they’re away. But she vows that when they return in six weeks, she’ll trade this ordinary life for the one she left behind. 

Sammy Johnson has never gotten traction in any area of his life. This hasn’t improved in the almost two years since the accident which nearly killed him. Although his heart is still beating, it contains little passion for the life he’s living in Deep Haven. But that begins to change when he offers to help his former high school friend, Robin. 

Working together to keep Fox Bakery from going under, they find more than friendship is simmering between them. But when the six weeks are up, will Robin follow her old dreams back to the glamor of Paris or will she discover how sweet it is to be loved in Deep Haven? 

Return to Deep Haven with the Fox Family, where Robin and Sammy find that small town life isn’t ordinary after all.

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookBub

Review: 

Robin Fox returns to her hometown with dreams of returning to chasing her dream in Paris, but a pit stop in Deep Haven might have what she needs. 

An engaging read with a determined and likable main characters, I admired Robin's quick thinking and how she kept her cool in crisis. It was also great seeing familiar faces from previous Deep Haven books pop up here and there. Sammy is a kind and hardworking man, I liked how he is always there for Robin and encourages her creativity, often willing to take the time to offer priceless help and support. 

A heartwarming romance set in one of my favorite fictional towns of all time, with great interaction and a cozy small town feel. An engaging read that is a great addition to the lore of Deep Haven! 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Also Available

Only You by Susan May Warren  Still the One  Can't Buy Me Love  Crazy for You

Then Came You  Hangin' by a Moment  Right Here Waiting  Once Upon a Winter Wonderland


About the Author

Andrea Christenson

Andrea Christenson lives in the Midwest with her husband and two daughters. When she is not busy homeschooling her girls, she loves to read anything she can get her hands on, bake bread, eat cheese, and watch Netflix—though not usually all at the same time. Andrea’s prayer is to write stories revealing God’s love.

Connect with Andrea by visiting andreachristenson.com to follow her on social media and sign up for email updates.

Tour Giveaway

(1) winner will win a paperback copy of How Sweet It Is and a $10 Gift Card to the Sunrise Shop!

How Sweet It Is JustRead Tours giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight July 17, 2023 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on July 24, 2023. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to JustRead Publicity Tours Giveaway Policies.

Enter Giveaway


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

7.17.2023

My Dear Miss Dupre by Grace Hitchcock // Review

My Review: 
A delightful Edwardian twist on the drama and romance of the Bachelorette!

Willow Dupre is s savvy business woman ready to take the reins of her family's sugar empire, but in order to appease the shareholders she must make an advantageous match from New York's elite. I think she handled the whole situation with grace and I liked how the story kept me guessing who she would choose in the end. I'm not overly familiar with the Bachelor franchise, but even I could pick out some humorous nods to the reality show which I found cute. 

Willow had a very likable bunch of gentlemen, I especially liked Teddy, Kit and Cullen. It was a fun read, and I loved the idea of a Bachelorette-like competition set in historical New York society. There was great interaction between the characters, and I had no trouble keeping the main characters straight. I also liked how Willow holds to her faith, and also encourages others. 

Overall, a highly enjoyable read great for fans of feel-good romantic comedies, full of adventure! I can't wait to read the next one in the series!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.14.2023

Wilderness Hunt by Lisa Phillips // Review

Lucie's Review: 

A search and rescue mission turns into a race for survival.

On a search for a downed plane carrying a federal witness Officer Kelly Wayne and her dog, Nicco, come across an injured man in the woods. He has no recollection of who he is or what is going on, but who Kelly believes ruined her career years ago. 

A fast paced read with a intriguing premise and riveting plot. This was a quick read for me because I didn't want to put it down, I loved the tension between the characters, as well as the layers to their situation. I really admired Ethan for turning to the faith that felt familiar to him, and thinking about the reality of their relationship. 

A wonderful read from beginning to end, full of suspense faith and romance. It kept me on my toes up to the end, and their was great character growth and interaction throughout. Definitely worth the read!


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.13.2023

This Is Where It Ends by Cindy K. Sproles // Review

My Review: 
A touching tale of family and forgiveness, as secrets are unearthed deep in the Appalachian Mountains. 

94-year -old Minerva Jenkins has lived alone with her dead husband's secret for thirty years, until a young reporter comes to her cabin asking questions about gold gone missing over half a century ago. The memories stir up unwelcome parts of her past, but an unlikely friendship begins to form between the two as the past sifts to light.

A compelling novel with characters that will make you smile and bring you to tears, I loved the honesty in Minerva's narrative. She is a straightforward and practical woman, who made the best of what she had with a fierce mountain loyalty. Del is a kind man, with a boyishness about him, and I liked how he takes Minerva's teasing good naturedly and how protective he is of her. 

A beautiful novel of friendship and forgiveness, with a strong message of faith. A wholly enjoyable read, filled with faith, and wisdom. My heart went out to Minerva for all that she lived through, and I admired her resilience and the earnestness of her heart. An amazing read. Heartily recommend. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.12.2023

Famous for a Living by Melissa Ferguson // Review

My Review: 

After a disastrous brand deal, social media influencer Cat Cranwell finds herself cancelled with no plan B. So she accepts Uncle Terry's invitation to work at a national park in the wilds of Montana.

A sweet read that also acts as a cautionary tale about living your life on social media. Cat is pretty addicted to her online life, and much of the book shows her character growth as she makes friends and finds a life outside of the internet, while helping the park find a social media presence. 

A quick read, not quite a romance, though there are bits of that sprinkled in. Zaiah is an intriguing character, and I liked how he is steady and supportive, with a passion for his work. And Uncle Terry is so sweet. 

This wasn't the easiest read for me, as I personally didn't find the main character all that likable. She was pretty superficial, which I do realize was the point, but it made it harder for me to become invested in her story. Especially as the story is told in first person from Cat's perspective. 

A fun quick read, with colorful characters in a beautiful mountain setting, good growth and a reminder to live life in reality. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.11.2023

Committing to the Cowgirl by Jody Hedlund // Review

My Review: 

Can a fake engagement give Astrid what her heart desires?

Astrid Nilsson returns to Fairplay, Colorado a doctor with a passion for helping others, but hiding the secret that her own battle with consumption is flaring up again. The key to practicing in her hometown is agreeing to a fake-relationship with Dr. Logan Steele, the man that broke her heart years ago. 

A wonderful follow up to the Colorado Cowboys Series. Astrid is a compassionate and determined young woman, she shows her mettle and her worthiness of her calling, putting her patients first and never complaining of the hard work. 

I liked the chemistry between Logan and Astrid as their deception grows more and more out of control. Logan is a principled and passionate doctor, he is good at what he does and cares deeply for his mother. Logan's mother definitely brought a smile to my face. 

Overall, an enjoyable romance with one of my favorite tropes--fake engagement! An engaging read with likeable characters and great interaction.  I also liked how it introduces the Courtney sisters who I think we will definitely be seeing more of in future books!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

 *All of the books in the Colorado Cowgirls series are sweet, closed-door romances with plenty of sizzle. The inspirational themes are light, and the romance is the main focus of the books.

A Lady's Guide to Marvels and Misadventure by Angela Bell // Cover Reveal and Details!


I’m thrilled to join the cover reveal for “A Lady’s Guide to Marvels and Misadventure” by Angela Bell, releasing from Bethany House Fiction on February 27, 2024! I've followed her on social media and read her novellas for a long time so it was fun to see this new book coming out!


This historical romance novel, inspired by Around the World in 80 Days and The Nutcracker ballet, is available for pre-order today!


Pre-order from Baker Book House for 40% off and FREE shipping: https://bakerbookhouse.com/products/542740 


ABOUT THE BOOK 


When Clara Marie Stanton’s ex-fiancé begins to spread rumors that her family suffers from hereditary insanity, it’s all Clara can do to protect them from his desperate schemes and society’s prejudice. Her family may be eccentric, yes, but they certainly aren’t insane. Then Clara’s Grandfather Drosselmeyer brings on an apprentice with a mechanical leg, and all pretense of normalcy takes wing. 


Theodore Kingsley, a shame-chased vagabond skilled in repairing clocks, wants a fresh start far from Kingsley Court and the disappointed father who declared him dead. Upon returning to England, Theodore meets clockmaker Drosselmeyer, who hires him as an apprentice, much to Clara’s dismay. When Drosselmeyer spontaneously disappears in his secret flying owl machine, he leaves behind a note for Clara, beseeching her to make her dreams of adventure a reality by joining him on a merry scavenger hunt. Together, Clara and Theodore set off to follow Drosselmeyer’s trail of clues, but they will have to stay one step ahead of a villain who wants the flying machine for himself—at any cost. 


Taking readers on a whimsical, unforgettable journey through Victorian London and Europe, debut author Angela Bell tells an imaginative tale of danger, adventure, and romance.





Pre-order Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Ladys-Guide-Marvels-Misadventure-ebook/dp/B0C9RR84T7/


Subscribe to Angela’s Newsletter: http://authorangelabell.com/newsletter/


#MarvelsAndMisadventure #coverreveal #bhpfiction #victorian #historicalromance


7.10.2023

The Year of Jubilee by Cindy Morgan // Review

My Review: 

A Southern coming-of-age story about love, loss, forgiveness, hope, and growing up in the early 1960's.

A character driven read set during a time when racial tensions were high, Grace Mockingbird is a young woman growing up in the South, estranged from her mother and trying to find her out path. One of the bright spots in her life is her younger brother Isaac, who is something of a prodigy. But when he takes sick, the eggshell-thin walls begin  to crumble even more. 

A well written read, with characters that detach themselves from the page with their sorrows and contradictions. We see a lot of folks acting out of their hurt, as well as others who despite all of their pain and suffering choose to lift others up and show kindness instead. I enjoyed the complex characters. 

I also found it interesting that this story was based loosely on the author's life, and her growing up years. 

Overall, this was a touching coming of age tale, more character driven, and Grace is a compelling voice. I loved getting to know the characters through her eyes, and I could understand why she made the choices that she did. Heartbreaking and healing, this book definitely takes you through an emotional gambit!


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.08.2023

Beneath a Peaceful Moon by Debby Lee // Celebrate Lit



About the Book

Book: Beneath a Peaceful Moon

Author: Debby Lee

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Release date: June, 2023

Mary’s Language Skills Could Help End the War in the Pacific


Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.

Mary Wishram is desperate to hang on to her few loved ones, a brother fighting in the South Pacific and Japanese friends in a relocation camp. Determined to end the war by any means necessary, she is willing to use her language skills as Yakama tribe member to become a spy and face any danger to bring them all home safe.

John Painted Horse struggles with the loss of his father who died in WWI for a country that didn’t consider him a United States citizen, much less give him the right to vote. He is desperate to bring long overdue recognition and honor to his people, no matter the cost.

Can they heal from their past traumas and find a peace, love, and a deeper relationship with God, before it’s too late?

 

Click here to get your copy!

 My Review: 

A WWII read that covers a lot of ground, with compelling characters. 

I liked how this book explored the complicated feelings that some likely had towards serving their country during this time. Mary is a talented young woman, and she wants to use her language skills in the war effort. It liked her friendship with John and how they connected over their culture and service. 

Slower to start, it took a while to get into the story. I admired John's devotion and care for his family, as well as his faith throughout. He has a quick mind and heart for others, even in the face of terrible treatment. 

A historical read from a different viewpoint than I have read in the past of WWII. A slower read for me, and at times it seemed to go over things very swiftly, and I wished that it had more about the code talkers. But an intriguing premise and likable main characters, definitely made me want to learn more about the code talkers and how they served. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

About the Author

Debby Lee was raised in the cozy little town of Toledo, Washington. She has been writing since she was a small child, and has written several novels, but never forgets home. The Northwest Christian Writers Association and Romance Writers of America are two organizations that Debby enjoys being a part of. As a self professed nature lover, and an avid listener of 1960’s folk music, Debby can’t help but feel like a hippie child who wasn’t born soon enough to attend Woodstock. She wishes she could run barefoot all year long, but often does anyway in the grass and on the beaches in her hamlet that is the cold and rainy southwest Washington. During football season, Debby cheers on the Seattle Seahawks along with legions of other devoted fans. She’s also filled with wanderlust and dreams of visiting Denmark, Italy, and Morocco someday.  Debby loves connecting with her readers through her website at www.booksbydebbylee.com

More from Debby

MY ATTEMPT AT MEATHOD WRITING

It was a warm, sunny September morning on my uncle’s farm, where I used an entrenching tool to dig my foxhole. A gentle breeze blew as I dug, and cooled my sweat-streaked forehead. The little shovel, with a handle roughly three feet long, did a fair job of breaking the dirt beneath my feet. Scoopful by scoopful, I managed to dig a hole about two feet deep, six feet long, and three feet wide.

 

I stood over this gaping pit that looked more like a grave. This was where I intended to sleep when darkness fell. I wondered, asked myself, “Will I make it through the night?”

 

My husband and I walked the perimeter of my uncle’s property. We noticed evidence of coyotes not more than one-hundred yards from my foxhole. Though my husband agreed to sleep in his truck not far from me, with a loaded pistol at the ready, we were still nervous about my sleeping arrangements. A few relatives laughed at my idea. I’m sure they thought I wouldn’t last more than a few hours out there that night.

 

I found a bucket old tin cans and a roll of string. I used my entrenching tool as a hammer and pounded holes in the cans and then strung a trip wire. Surely this would scare away any curious predators. I hoped.

 

My husband did tell me, “If you hear wolves or coyotes howling, get in the truck!”

 

By this time it was late in the evening and I was starving. In an attempt to stay in character, I reached for an MRE. That’s Meals Ready to Eat, today’s equivalent to K rations and C rations. I never thought I’d be hungry enough to suck cold mashed potatoes from a plastic pouch.

 

I went to bed that night clutching my entrenching tool, ready to fight off any critters who ventured too close. Sleep didn’t come easy that night. The ground was hard, uneven, and cold, bone-chilling cold. I shivered and shivered in a futile effort to keep warm.

 

The things that ran through my mind. I gazed at the inky, black sky and located the North Star. I thought of runaway slaves. How cold and terribly frightened they had to have been. And how brave and courageous, too.

 

Later, I realized my trip wire was enough to alert me to coyotes, but not snakes or rats. Was I strong enough, mentally, physically, to beat off a hoard of rats? A pack of hungry coyotes, if they broke through my tripwire?

 

Honestly, I was terrified. Not necessarily of falling to sleep, but falling to sleep and being jolted awake having to fight for my safety. I meditated on scriptures and continuously whispered, “If I can just make it until daylight.”

 

I don’t think I slept more than three hours that night, an hour here, another there. The sun lightened the gray sky. I climbed from my foxhole, my back and muscles were stiff and sore, but I was thankful to see the sun.

 

I was thankful for so much more. My night in a foxhole was ludicrously luxurious compared to those brave soldiers who fought during WWII and the wars since then. At least I didn’t have to contend with bombs or grenades raining down on me.

 

I can’t imagine going to bed night after night, wondering if bombs, grenades, or gunfire would pierce the air, wondering if my buddies and I would be shot or blown to bits, wondering if I’d live to see sunrise. My respect for soldiers grew a thousand-fold that night.

 

I’ve visited my uncle’s farm several times since then. I always gaze across the partially wooded forty acres and I remember that night. And remember the sacrifices our soldiers made for me, for democracy, and for freedom.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, June 27

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 28

Books You Can Feel Good About, June 28

lakesidelivingsite, June 29

Cover Lover Book Review, June 29

Texas Book-aholic, June 30

For Him and My Family, June 30

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 1

Connie’s History Classroom, July 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 3

Mary Hake, July 3

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 4

Pause for Tales, July 5

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, July 6 (Author Interview)

annette_reads_daily, July 6

Betti Mace, July 7

Labor Not in Vain, July 8

Blossoms and Blessings, July 8

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, July 9

Lights in a Dark World, July 10

Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Debby is giving away the grand prize package of a print copy of the book and a $25 Amazon eGift Card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/2678d/beneath-a-peaceful-moon-celebration-tour-giveaway 




7.07.2023

Montana Cold Case Conspiracy by Sharon Dunn // Review

Lucie's Review: 

An action packed suspense that brings together Lila and her ex-fiancé Sheriff Stewart Duncan together as they fight to unravel the truth behind what drove them apart a decade ago. 

A fast-paced read full of suspense as they work to stay ahead of the killer, I liked how this book brought Stewart and Lila back together and forced them to face their past. I liked that Stewart is very protective of Lila, as they remember what made them such a great couple so many years ago. 

Overall, this was a quick and entertaining read with great characters that I was cheering for the whole time. Sometimes though it felt like most of their relationship was falling back on what was built ten years ago. I liked the themes of second chances in this action-packed read!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.06.2023

Where Her Heart Lies by Carolyn Twede Frank // Review

Lucie's Review: 

Celeste returns home after years of finishing school and being spurned by a suitor. Back in Colorado she get's reacquainted with an old friend, and the man who broke her heart in New York follows her to Colorado. Who will prove himself worthy of her heart? 

A sweet western romance, I felt my heart go out to Logan for all the things that he had and was still going through, and I could see with how he was just scrapping by that he didn't feel comfortable pursuing a wife. He is hardworking and kindhearted. He didn't ever ask for anything from anyone, and was always putting others first. Celeste on the other hand was more divided in her thinking and unsure in some ways. 

An enjoyable read with likable characters, and a beautiful setting. I liked the character interaction and growing relationship between the characters. A sweet romance, though sometimes I was frustrated with the characters. 


I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

7.05.2023

Colter Sons Series by Karen Baney // Just Read Spotlight and Excerpt

Colter Sons series JustRead Blog Tour

Welcome to the Blog Tour for the first three books of the Colter Sons series by Karen Baney, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

About the Books

The Reluctant Cattleman

Title: The Reluctant Cattleman
Series:
Colter Sons #1
Author:
Karen Baney
Publisher:
Desert Life Media
Release Date:
August 19, 2022
Genre:
Christian Historical Romance

A Love at First Sight Christian Historical Cowboy Romance. Coming of age story set in Prescott, Arizona in 1887. 

As Sam Colter takes on more responsibilities at the family ranch, he believes he is a disappointment to his father. He feels like the misfit of the family. When a journalist shows up to interview his mother, secrets from the past threaten his fledging sense of security. Can he overcome his fear and doubts to accept his role as a cattleman and rancher? Will he allow himself to love the woman who turned his life upside down? 

Ellie Mae Thatcher moves to Prescott to start her career as a writer. When she misleads the Colters about her identity, she hurts the man she is falling in love with. Can she win back his trust and his heart?

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Bookshop | BookBub



Excerpt: “I should apologize in advance for the barbaric frenzy you are about to see,” Sam said.

I laughed. “I’ll be careful to not get in the way.”

“Not if you want to keep your limbs.”

I heard the noise long before we arrived at the porch. “I see what you mean about your brothers.”

As he held the door open, I braced myself for the aforementioned chaos. The noise was so loud I wanted to cover my ears. I glanced at Sam. His mouth turned downward, and he stepped around me to place my things in the parlor.

My jaw slackened as I watched the scene unfold. Boone had Preston in a headlock while Deacon tickled Preston’s side. Preston squirmed and flailed his arms, trying to get his older brothers to stop. Boone rubbed his knuckles on the top of Preston’s head, mussing his hair.

“Stop it!” Preston yelled between giggles.

“Boone!” Their mother’s voice held a hard edge, which Boone ignored.

“Morning, boys!” I hollered.

Deacon dropped his hands as Boone released Preston, who fell to the floor with a loud thud. He jumped to his feet and smoothed out his wrinkled shirt.

Boone stepped forward and ran a hand through his hair. “Morning, Ellie Mae.”

Then he held a chair out for me. Sam held out a different chair, and I suddenly felt awkward. I slid into it. One thing was certain: meals at the Colter’s house would be anything but boring.


The Roaming Adventurer

Title: The Roaming Adventurer
Series:
Colter Sons #2
Author:
Karen Baney
Publisher:
Desert Life Media
Release Date:
October 21, 2022
Genre:
Christian Historical Romance

A Shotgun Wedding, Main Character Disguise Christian Historical Cowboy Romance. Set in Prescott, Arizona Territory in 1890 – 1891.

Boisterous Boone Colter settled into his career as a surveyor when his older brother approached him to survey a route for a new railroad. When Boone hires Jack Bennett, he never expected to be forced to choose between his desire for independence and protecting Jack. Will he rise to the occasion? Can he find a way to strike a balance? 

Jaclyn “Jack” Bennett spent the last six years apprenticing as an assistant surveyor under her father. When her father asks her to give up her dreams, settle down, and get married, Jaclyn disguises herself as a man and flees to Prescott, Arizona. Except she never thought through how her choice would destroy the lives of those around her. Will she find a way to reconcile broken relationships?

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Bookshop | BookBub



Excerpt: I could tell you my name, but growing up at my house, I thought it was almost a curse word. If Mama said my name, Boone, with her hands raised in the air and let them fall to her side, I knew I pressed her to the point of frustration that day.

If Mama said “Boone” with a low growl like a snarling dog going after a jackrabbit for its supper, the next words outta her mouth were something like: wait until my father gets home. It was an odd thing to say.

We lived on a ranch, and he was always within earshot of a rifle. If Mama said my name and wrung her hands at the same time as her eyebrows scrunched together, she just witnessed me do something highly risky that probably caused her heart to lodge up in her throat.

Like the time I jumped outta the hay loft hanging onto a rope that wasn’t properly secured to anything. I should have busted up something. I had more lives than a cat.

The Railroad Magnate

Title: The Railroad Magnate
Series:
Colter Sons #3
Author:
Karen Baney
Publisher:
Desert Life Media
Release Date:
December 2, 2022
Genre:
Christian Historical Romance

A Love at First Sight Christian Historical Cowboy Romance. Set in Prescott, Arizona Territory in 1891 – 1893.

James Colter was a successful entrepreneur and businessman in the railroad industry. As he watches his younger brothers marry and start their families, his loneliness deepens. He has everything, except the one thing he longs for the most:  a wife and family of his own. When he dances with the daughter of an older friend, was it love at first sight, or will he put his personal dream on hold again to pursue his professional aspirations? 

Keri Glassman wants to follow in her parents’ footsteps. She dreams of becoming a contract attorney. When a handsome suitor invites her on a train ride, the course of her life is rewritten. Like her mother, she wants it all, a career, a loving husband, and a family. Can she find her own way or will her desire to please her parents threaten to destroy her hope for a lasting love?

PURCHASE LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Bookshop | BookBub



Excerpt: As I entered the ballroom, my eyes snagged on a heavenly creature and my pulse picked up pace. Her dark brown hair complimented her ivory skin. Her sapphire blue dress brought out the vibrancy of her blue eyes, which beckoned to me from across the room. Stunning.

I did not stop until I stood before her. The music started, so I extended my hand toward her.

“May I have this dance?” I asked.

Pink tinged her cheeks as she placed her delicate hand on mine and stood. My eyes locked with hers as I pulled her close. At that moment, there was no one else in the room. Just her.

My feet glided across the dance floor. As I led us in a waltz, she kept perfect pace with me. Then she smiled and my heart danced even faster than my feet. The first dance sped by without a word exchanged between us.

As the second dance started, I asked, “How have we not met before now?”

“Oh, but we may have.” Pink colored her cheeks. Her dark lashes fluttered as she looked down for a moment, stealing my breath away.

“I’m certain I would have remembered you.” One side of my mouth curved up.

“You are James Colter, are you not?”

“Indeed. And you are?”

“Keri Glassman.”

“And you believe we’ve met before?”

The sound of her soft laughter endeared her to me even more.

“I know it.”

I flashed her a saucy grin. “Really?”

“I am rarely wrong.”

Confident. Sure. And beautiful. I wondered where she had been all my life.

“Care to remind me where we met before?”

“You have a reputation, Mr. Colter, for being a very astute man. I am certain you will solve the mystery all on your own without my assistance.”


More Books in This Series

The Resourceful Stockman   


About the Author

Karen Baney

Karen Baney is passionate about writing stories full of flawed characters. She enjoys weaving together stories of second chances, redemption, and overcoming personal trials. As a transplant to Arizona in the late 1990s, she loves researching the state’s history and finding ways to seamlessly incorporate real history and real settings into her novels. In addition to writing and speaking, Karen works as a Software Development Manager for a Christian ministry.

Her faith plays an important role both in her life and in her writing. Karen and her husband, Jim, make their home in Gilbert, Arizona, with their two dogs, Bella and Daisy. Both Jim and Karen are active at Rock Point Church in Queen Creek, Arizona. 

Connect with Karen by visiting karenbaney.com to follow her on social media and sign up for email updates.


Tour Giveaway

(2) winners will each win all 6 books in the Colter Sons series (winner picks paperback or ebook)!

Colter Sons series JustRead Tours giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight July 3, 2023 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on July 10, 2023. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to JustRead Publicity Tours Giveaway Policies.

Enter Giveaway


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours