Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Sincerely Yours by Jane Kirkpatrick, Amanda Cabot, Laurie Alice Eakes, and Ann Shorey (Review)

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (April 1, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800722043

Four unexpected letters. Four intrepid women. Four lives changed forever.
Spanning a century and a continent, these romantic novellas will lead you on a journey through the landscape of love. Four young women find their lives altered after each receives a letter that sets her on a new path. From a Hudson River steamboat to a lush drawing room, from a carousel carver's workshop to a remote hospital, you'll be swept into the lives of women who are making their way in the world and finding love where they least expect it.

Moonlight Promise by Laurie Alice Eakes
Camilla Renfrew is a highborn English lady fleeing false accusations when she runs smack into love on a steamboat bound for the new Erie Canal. But can this unexpected attraction survive the treacherous journey?

Lessons in Love by Ann Shorey
Marigold Montgomery Bentley writes marriage advice for Kipler's Home Weekly even though she is single. Everyone assumes from the initials that "M. M." is a man. When the editor asks to meet Mr. Bentley, can Merrie come up with a ruse to keep her writing job?

One Little Word by Amanda Cabot
Lorraine Caldwell will lose her family fortune to a reckless cousin if she doesn't marry quickly. When she learns her long-lost brother is alive, she hopes she's found the answer to her problems. What she finds instead is a mysterious carousel carver who turns her life upside down.

A Saving Grace by Jane KirkpatrickGrace Hathaway must rescue a dear friend from a remote and notorious clinic that promises healing but delivers only heartache. In a place laced with deceit, where lives hang in the balance, whom can she trust to help her? 

My Review:

I really enjoyed reading this set of four Christian historical romance novellas. I am not usually a huge fan of novellas because I think they are too short to fully develop a plot. All of these plots were interesting and unique. The characters were developed and I felt engaged with them. I enjoyed all of the stories too much to pick a favorite. Fans of this genre will like this collection. Recommended. :)

Jane Kirkpatrick is the award-winning author of many novels, including A Flickering Light. She is a frequent speaker at conferences and lives in Oregon. Visit www.jkbooks.com for more.

Amanda Cabot is the bestselling author of the Texas Dreams series, the Westward Winds series, and Christmas Roses. She lives in Wyoming. Visit www.amandacabot.com for more.

Laurie Alice Eakes
is the author of The Midwives series and The Daughters of Bainbridge House series. Laurie Alice writes full-time from her home in Texas, where she lives with her husband. Visit www.lauriealiceeakes.com for more.

Ann Shorey
is the author of the At Home in Beldon Grove series and the Sisters at Heart series. Ann and her husband make their home in southwestern Oregon. Visit www.annshorey.com for more.

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Dancing with Fireflies by Denise Hunter (Review)

  • Series: A Chapel Springs Romance (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (March 11, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401687024
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401687021

Jade returns home to Chapel Springs after years of protecting her fragile heart. Then along comes Daniel, making her long to dance again.

Creative and complicated, Jade McKinley felt like a weed in a rose garden growing up in Chapel Springs. When she left, she thought she’d never look back. But now, pregnant, alone, and broke, she has no other choice but to return.

The mayor of Chapel Springs, Daniel Dawson, has been an honorary member of the McKinley family for years. While his own home life was almost non-existent, Daniel fit right into the boisterous McKinley family. He’s loved Jade for years, but she always saw him as a big brother. Now that she’s back, his feelings are stronger than ever.

As Jade attempts to settle in, nothing feels right. God seems far away, she’s hiding secrets from her family, and she’s strangely attracted to the man who’s always called her “squirt.” Finding her way home may prove more difficult than she imagined.

My Review:

This was a good contemporary Christian romance book. It is the second in the McKinley family series. The main focus of this book was on Jade and Daniel but the other McKinley's were present also. This author does a good job adding clean sparks between couples. Jade and Daniel had plenty of sparks but the faith element was too little for my taste. The character of Jade did not have enough emotions especially considering what she went through. Daniel was a great hero. The plot was well written and interesting. The author also did a good job capturing the town. I look forward to reading the next book in this series. Recommended.

Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than 20 books, including "Barefoot Summer" and "The Convenient Groom". She has won The Holt Medallion Award, The Reader's Choice Award, The Foreword Book of the Year Award, and is a RITA finalist.

In 1996, inspired by the death of her grandfather, Denise began her first book, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she's been writing ever since. Her husband says he inspires all her romantic stories, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

When Denise isn't writing she's busy raising three heroes-in-the making with her husband.

You can learn more about Denise through her website www.DeniseHunterBooks.com or by visiting her FaceBook page at https://www.facebook.com/authordenisehunter

Review copy provided by Litfuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review.

Dancing with Fireflies Contest

Don't miss Denise Hunter's latest Chapel Springs Romance, Dancing with Fireflies. Reviewers have already labeled Dancing with Fireflies "swoon-worthy" and "the perfect love story." 

Join Denise in celebrating the release of her new book by entering her Kindle HDX giveaway and RSVPing for her April 10th Facebook party.
One winner will receive:
  • A brand new Kindle Fire HDX
  • Dancing with Fireflies and Barefoot Summer by Denise Hunter
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 10th. Winner will be announced at the Dancing with Fireflies Facebook Party on April 10th. Connect with Denise for an evening of prizes, book chat, and an exclusive look at the next book in the series.

Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP today by clicking JOIN on the event page. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 10th!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Summer of Joy by Ann Gabhart (Review)

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (February 15, 2008) (March 1, 2014)
  • ISBN-10: 0800731700
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800731700

  • For Jocie Brooke, the summer of 1964 certainly was eventful, but it's nothing compared to what's coming to Hollyhill, Kentucky, and the Brooke family next. The past is coming to call, threatening to destroy the relationships that everyone thought were so strong. Two people--one thought to be gone for good and the other no one's ever heard of--are making their way to the small town. And it promises trouble for everyone.

    This complex and beautifully written story is the perfect conclusion to The Heart of Hollyhill series. With true-to-life family drama, refreshing humor, and characters readers have come to love like dear friends, "Summer of Joy" will delight Gabhart's fans.

    My Review:

    I thought this was a good Christian historical fiction book. It is third in a series but I only felt like I was missing some detailed history behind some sentences a few times so I think it can be enjoyed on its on. I have not read the first two. The characters and plot were interesting and kept my attention from beginning to end. This book has a little mystery, suspense, humor, and romance all in one. Jocie is 14 and plays an important part of this book. Even though more of the action centers around David and Leigh than her. She is woven into the whole book and series. There are great secondary characters too like the other employees at the newspaper David owns and works at. It has a good small town feel to it. The conclusion was mostly satisfying. I would have liked more of an ending for Deedee, David's ex wife, but I understand the way the author left it. Recommended.

    Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels--The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted--as well as several other historical novels, including Scent of Lilacs, Orchard of Hope, Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, and Words Spoken True. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. Find out more at www.annhgabhart.com.

    Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

    Thursday, March 27, 2014

    Maybelle In Stitches by Joyce Magnin

    This week, the
    Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
    is introducing
    Maybelle In Stitches
    Abingdon Press (March 18, 2014)
    Joyce Magnin


    A word from the Author:

    I am the author of seven novels. Five adult novels and two middle grade readers. I never wanted to do anything else but write and every day I wake up astonished that I get to do what I always dreamed about. My days are filled with words and images along with the usual family stuff. I have three children, Rebekah who is married to Joshua. They have three of the most adorable boys on the planet, Lemuel, Cedar and Soren. My daughter Emily Kate is a lovely young woman anthropologist and my son Adam is fourteen and a student--he's a genius who loves frogs and lizards and fish and plants. He amazes me.

    I have never eaten a scallop. I love cream soda. Drink way too much coffee. I do not like elevators but I do enjoy needle arts and of course books. I prefer jazz over country (no offense), milk chocolate over dark, but not roller coasters although my life has often resembled a roller coaster ride.

    One of my life's desires is to meet Amy Grant so I can tell her she saved my life.


    Maybelle can’t sew. But when she finds an unfinished quilt in the attic of her mother’s house, she gets the crazy idea to complete it. At first, it’s just a way to fill the lonely nights while her husband, staff sergeant Holden Kanzinzki, is away fighting in World War II.

    Yet when Maybelle discovers that the quilt is made from scraps of material that can be traced back through her family heritage, the project is suddenly much more important. Then word comes that Holden is missing in action, and with little else to do, Maybelle clings to the quilt as much as to the hope that her husband is still alive. As neighborhood friends gather around Maybelle to help her through the unknown days and nights ahead, it is the quilt that becomes a symbol of her unflagging belief that Holden will return—to her, to their home, and to their quilt-covered bed.

    If you would like to read the first chapter of Maybelle In Stitches, go HERE.

    Sunday, March 23, 2014

    Tide and Tempest by Elizabeth Ludwig

    This week, the
    Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
    is introducing
    Tide and Tempest
    Bethany House Publishers (March 4, 2014)
    Elizabeth Ludwig


    Elizabeth Ludwig is an award-winning author whose work has been featured on Novel Rocket, the Christian Authors Network, and The Christian Pulse. Her first novel, Where the Truth Lies (co-authored with Janelle Mowery), earned her the 2008 IWA Writer of the Year Award. This book was followed in 2009 by "I'll be Home for Christmas", part of the Christmas anthology collection, Christmas Homecoming.

    In 2011, her second mystery, Died in the Wool (co-authored with Janelle Mowery) was nominated for a Carol Award. In 2012, the popular EDGE OF FREEDOM series released from Bethany House Publishers. Books one and two, No Safe Harbor and Dark Road Home, respectively, earned 4 Stars from the RT Book Reviews. Book three, Tide and Tempest, received top honors with 4 1/2 Stars.

    Elizabeth is an accomplished speaker and teacher, often attending conferences and seminars where she lectures on editing for fiction writers, crafting effective novel proposals, and conducting successful editor/agent interviews. Along with her husband and children, she makes her home in the great state of Texas.


    Two years ago, her fiance perished during their voyage to America.

    Now she discovers it may have been murder...

    Dreaming of a better life, Tillie McGrath leaves Ireland behind and, with her beloved fiance by her side, sets sail for America. But when illness robs her of the man she holds dear, she's left alone with only a handful of tattered memories. While forging on proves difficult, Tillie soon finds some new friends at her New York boardinghouse, and begins pursuing a new dream--to open a home for orphaned children.

    Despite two years passing, Captain Keondric Morgan has never forgotten the lass who left his ship so heartbroken. When a crewman's deathbed confession reveals her fiance's demise was the result of murder, the captain knows he must try to contact her. But his attention draws the notice of others as well--dangerous men who believe Tillie has in her possession something that could expose their crimes. And to their way of thinking, the best way to prevent such an outcome is to seize the evidence and then hand Tillie the same fate as her naïve fiance.

    If you would like to read the first chapter of Tide and Tempest, go HERE.

    Monday, March 17, 2014

    It Had to Be You by Susan May Warren (Review)

    • Series: Christiansen Family
    • Paperback: 480 pages
    • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (January 17, 2014)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1414378424
    • ISBN-13: 978-1414378428

    Eden Christiansen never imagined her role as her younger brother Owen’s cheerleader would keep her on the sidelines of her own life. Sure, it feels good to be needed, but looking after the reckless NHL rookie leaves little time for Eden to focus on her own career. She dreamed of making a name for herself as a reporter, but is stuck writing obits—and starting to fear she doesn’t have the chops to land a major story. If only someone would step up to mentor Owen . . . but she knows better than to expect help from team veteran and bad-boy enforcer Jace Jacobsen.

    Jace has built his career on the infamous reputation of his aggressive behavior—on and off the ice. Now at a crossroads about his future in hockey, that reputation has him trapped. And the guilt-trip he’s getting from Eden Christiansen isn’t making things any easier. But when Owen’s carelessness leads to a career-threatening injury and Eden stumbles upon a story that could be her big break, she and Jace are thrown together . . . and begin to wonder if they belong on the same team after all.

    My Review:

    I loved this latest book in the Christiansen family series. It can be read on its own but the whole series is good. Jace is the perfect hunky hero with the right amount of bad boy fallibility. Eden is a great heroine. She is stronger and smarter than she realizes. She thinks it is her life to take care of her siblings especially her brother Owen. Jace and Owen play professional hockey together. The author does a good job with just enough hockey details. The characters and the plot were well developed and unique. It held my attention from the beginning. The sparks fly between Jace and Eden in an appropriate way. Jace and Owen are not perfect. There is some alcohol and fighting in the book. It is not prominent it just adds to the realness of the characters. The conclusion is satisfying and sigh worthy. This was another great Susan May Warren love story. Highly Recommended. :)

    About the author:

    Growing up in Minneapolis and attending the U of MN, I learned to love city life, although I'm a woodsy girl at heart. Or maybe I'm an adventurer -- having lived and traveled all over the world, including Siberia Russia as a missionary for eight years. Probably that's why my characters can't sit still, and seem to get into one scrape after another -- they're too much like me! I love God, my family, my country, my church, and feel privileged every day to be able to write stories, that I hope inspire and entertain!

    Review copy provided by Litfuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review.