Monday, June 18, 2018

Plunge into Darkness: Book 1 By Kristin N. Spencer

 I received this book from Celebrate Lit Blogger Program and the author for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book.  The opinions expressed here are my own.


 Book Description:

Two girls.

A village with a dark secret.

Their only hope is a mythical figure Ever Morena has only read about in her father’s lone book.

Ten years ago Ever’s best friend disappeared without a trace. Though the loss of her friend only came close to killing her then, the truth of what happened might finish the job now—just when her future as the village healer is looking bright.

Ever must risk everything she loves in order to plunge into darkness on an impossible journey in the middle of the Concealed Forest.
Never before has redemption been so costly.

Please note: This book contains subject matter which some may find troubling as it spotlights helping those who have experienced abuse. I tried to handle this topic as delicately as I could, keeping the reader’s experience in mind.
 My Thoughts: 

Plunge into Darkness is Kristin N. Spencer latest book in her new series, WOW! I don't often read Christian Fantasy but this book caught my eye and I couldn't pass it up, especially the cover of this book.  Kristin N. Spencer is a new to me author so that was another reason to read it! Kristin N. Spencer writes with authority about loss,mystery, and folk lore. This book really had a hold on me, I couldn't put it down and it kept guessing. I held my breath in many parts, hurt for the characters, bubbling with anger, and cried through good and bad parts. I truly enjoyed this book. I did appreciate the heads up about the sensitive material, not many books do that. I am sorry that I cannot do right by this book. This book is one that will stay with me for a long time.  I highly recommend this book and this author to anyone who enjoys Fantasy/Christian Fantasy, you will not be disappointed. 
I give this book 5+ STARS!!




Plunge into Darkness FB Banner copy
About the Book

Plunge into Darkness
Title: Plunge into Darkness  
Author: Kristen N. Spencer  
Release Date: February 27, 2018  
Genre: Fantasy
Two girls.
A village with a dark secret.
Their only hope is a mythical figure Ever Morena has only read about in her father’s lone book.
Ten years ago Ever’s best friend disappeared without a trace. Though the loss of her friend only came close to killing her then, the truth of what happened might finish the job now—just when her future as the village healer is looking bright.
Ever must risk everything she loves in order to plunge into darkness on an impossible journey in the middle of the Concealed Forest.
Never before has redemption been so costly.
Please note: This book contains subject matter which some may find troubling as it spotlights helping those who have experienced abuse. I tried to handle this topic as delicately as I could, keeping the reader’s experience in mind.
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Kristin Spencer

Kristin N. Spencer spends part of each day imagining up new worlds and beings when she isn’t busy taking care of her three children and writing partner husband T. E. Spencer. When she’s not writing you can find her working in full time ministry, sewing cosplay costumes, or watching geekesque movies. She writes whatever genre she wants including but not limited to Non-Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, Sci-Fi, Space Fantasy, and traditional Fantasy. Kristin studied Comparative World Literature at California State University, Long Beach and received a Bachelors, which she fondly calls a degree in reading. Her favorite movie is Sabrina (the Julia Ormond version) and her favorite person is Jesus.

Guest Post from Kristin N. Spencer

Life is messy because people are messy. While I was missionary in Athens, Greece I spent a lot of time around profoundly broken people who were making brave choices to change their lives and the lives of their children. Human trafficking creates a unique kind of broken, and the people that minister to people who have survived this difficult journey also have to reach an understanding of what the people they’re ministering to have been through. After a while serving in a ministry that works with women who have been rescued out of prostitution, the founder and director sent me a message. She said she wanted to have a sit down talk so we could get to know each other. As I nervously tapped my foot on the plastic metro floor on my way to the meeting, a picture came into my head. I saw a young woman sitting next to a dark pond filled with sledge, and knew instantly that something that could help her was inside there, and the only way to help her was to jump into the sledge and find it… to experience the darkness as a witness as a way to understand it. When I got to my meeting with the director, I told her about the picture I had seen on the metro. She said it was a perfect illustration for the work we do as advocates for survivors of sexual abuse. It was then that I thought, “This is more than a picture… this could be a story to illustrate how sometimes the only way to help hurting and broken people is to go through the darkness—though to a lesser degree of course—ourselves.”
When you have a friend or acquaintance that is healing from a difficult ordeal, one of the best ways for them to heal is to be able to talk about it. The simple truth is, hearing about someone being raped is horrific and uncomfortable. But imagine how much more horrible it is to actually be raped, and then never feel like anyone wants to let you talk about it. Not only are you reeling from the sexual assault, but also from the society imposed silence everyone expects you to keep.
Enter Ever, Dawn, and the Man of Sorrows. I don’t want to give too much away, but if you read the story, you will see the clear implications of how what I’ve just described came to be crafted into a fantasy story that deals directly with the character of man versus the character of an all loving, creative being. I hope you love this book and it leaves you wanting more even though the topic is a difficult one.

Blog Stops

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
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To celebrate her tour, Kristin is giving away a grand prize of a $25 Amazon Gift Card, ‘Plunge Into Darkness’ Paperback, Minimalism Art Classic Notebook Journal, and Huhuhero Fineliner Color Pen Set (10 Pack)!!Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! 






Monday, June 11, 2018

Together Forever: Orphan Train Book 2 By Jody Hedlund

I received this book from Celebrate Lit Blogger Program and the author for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own. 

Book Description: 

Will the mistakes of their past cost them a chance at love?

Determined to find her lost younger sister, Marianne Neumann takes a job as a placing agent with the Children's Aid Society in 1858 New York. She not only hopes to offer children a better life, but prays she'll be able to discover whether Sophie ended up leaving the city on an orphan train so they can finally be reunited.

Andrew Brady, her fellow agent on her first placing-out trip, is a former schoolteacher who has an easy way with children, firm but tender and friendly. Underneath his charm and handsome looks, though, seems to linger a grief that won't go away--and a secret from his past that he keeps hidden.

As the two team up, placing orphans in the small railroad towns of Illinois, they find themselves growing ever closer . . . until a shocking tragedy threatens to upend all their work and change one of their lives forever.


My Thoughts: 

Together Forever is the second book of Jody Hedlund\s series, Orphan Train, and it is great! As a fan of Christian Historical Fiction and Jody Hedlund, I couldn't wait to read this book.  Jody Hedlund writes with authority on The United States during 1858 especially New York and Illinois, Children's Aid Society, The Orphan Train, and the connection between these adults to the orphan children. I love learning new things and Jody Hedlund didn't disappoint. I had heard of the Orphan Trains but learned so much more about it after reading this book. I also learned so much more about the US during 1858. I found myself researching more to learn more. One of the many reasons I love Jody Hedlund's books. The characters in this book are well written and very real. I found myself drawn to Marianne. She is such a well rounded character. Her perseverance in finding her sister and love for children are admirable. I love her personality and how she deals with everything.  Jody Hedlund's style of writing truly put me there right in the story, going on these journeys with Marianne and Andrew. I have not read the first book of this series yet and it definitely can be read as a stand alone. I could NOT put this book down, from start to finish kept me guessing until the end. I highly recommend this book and author to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, you will not be disappointed. I give this book 5 STARS. 

I would like to apologize to Jody Hedlund and Celebrate Lit for the lateness of this review. I had some personal things that prevented me from posting this review.  

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

She Who Knows No Fear: Another Tale of The Heart By Barbara Bras

 I received this book from Celebrate Lit Blogger Program and the author for no charge in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed here are my own.


Book Description: 

Cassie's dream is about to come true. She's marrying her best friend, the love of her life. She will never be alone again. But when Zack fails to return from surfing, Cassie's safe world comes crashing down around her and she begins her struggle anew. Haunted by her conviction that her late grandmother left her something that will help her, Cassie discovers hidden "treasures" in the house she inherited. With the help of her stepmother, Cassie unlocks the secrets of her grandmother's journey and along the way finds the ultimate answer for her own life.

My Thoughts: 

She Who Knows No Fear is the latest the book by Barbara Bras, it is the sequel to She Who Knows and it is fantastic. This series attracted my attention because of the setting of this book. I absolutely love Hawaii and I found myself drawn to these books. Barbara Bras writes with authority about Hawaii and it's history, marriage, anxiety, abandonment, and sharing God's word. The cover of this book is beautifully done. I was very drawn in with Barbara Bras style of writing and her ability to put me right into the story, seeing Hawaii so vividly that I really felt like I was there. The characters are well written and are real people who go through the ups and downs of life. I enjoyed all of the characters but I found myself drawn to Cassie and her step mom, Hannah. Cassie's struggles with abandonment and anxiety I can completely relate to. I enjoyed cheering her on as she grew in her faith and found the tools to deal with her issues. I felt drawn to Hannah's transparency and her ability to share her faith and love to help Cassie through some rough times. Hannah's strength is so admirable, I wish I had someone in my life like her.  The book captivated me from cover to cover, I found myself unable to put this book down. I read this book in about 3 days. The books in the series can be read as stand alones but I recommend reading them both. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Fiction, you will NOT be disappointed. I cannot wait to read more from Barbara Bras, hopefully another book in this wonderful series. I give this book 5+ STARS. 


She Who Knows No Fear FB Banner copy

About the Book

Bstsell auth
  

Title: She Who Knows No Fear  

Author: Barbara Bras  

Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction  

Release Date: December 8, 2017
Cassie’s dream is about to come true. She’s marrying her best friend, the love of her life. She will never be alone again. But when Zack fails to return from surfing, Cassie’s safe world comes crashing down around her and she begins her struggle anew. Haunted by her conviction that her late grandmother left her something that will help her, Cassie discovers hidden “treasures” in the house she inherited. With the help of her stepmother, Cassie unlocks the secrets of her grandmother’s journey and along the way finds the ultimate answer for her own life.

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author


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In 2015, Barbara Bras left her career to pursue her dream of serving God. She believed that her first step was to share the amazing story of God’s blessings in her life. Wrapped in God’s Grace, A Life Rediscovered does so through a trio of narratives. It begins with the story of her son’s miraculous adoption and the challenging years that followed, her grandparents’ remarkable survival in Armenia, and her own quest for purpose and love. Once written, Barbara realized her life’s new purpose. Captured by St. Paul in 2 Corinthians 1:3-4, she views her writing as a tribute to the God who comforts and strengthens us in hardships and trials, and as her mission to encourage others. Her first novel, She Who Knows, A Tale of the Heart, seeks to inspire and encourage. The sequel, She Who Knows No Fear: Another Tale of the Heart, released in December 2017. Solo Deo Gloria, To God Alone Be the Glory

She who knows no fear image

Blog Spots

A Greater Yes, April 29
Among the Reads, April 30
Reading is my Super Power, May 3 (Interview)
Carpe Diem, May 5
margaret kazmierczak, May 6 (Interview)
Mary Hake, May 7
Simple Harvest Reads, May 7 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
Artistic Nobody, May 9 (Spotlight)

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Barbara is giving away a grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card plus a signed copy of She Who Knows and She Who Knows No Fear!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/ca74

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A Flute in the Willows: The Spies of World War II Volume 2 By Carole Brown

I received this book from Celebrate Lit and the author for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book.  The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description: 

Both rebels in their own way, Josie and Jerry Patterson must figure out how to keep the other’s love…and keep the German enemy at bay.
She has two loves—her skating and Jerry, her husband. But when he returns home looking like a skeleton trying to return to life, she’s scared. What happened in Germany to change a man so much? Has another woman captured his heart?
Jerry has vowed to let Josie live her own glamorous life…especially after what happened in Germany. But when his wife’s life is threatened, Jerry realizes he can’t stand by and do nothing. Jerry has to risk all for the very soul and life of himself—Josie.
These two damaged, rebellious people learn the hard way that leaning on God instead of their own selves and abilities is the only true way to love and happiness.


My Thoughts: 

A Flute in the Willows is Carole Brown's latest book in her series, The Spies of World War II, and it is great. This is the second book in this series and the first book by Carole Brown I have had the pleasure of reading. As a huge fan of Christian Historical Fiction this book really caught my attention. After reading the description, I knew I had to read it. The content of the book is different from other books I have read about World War II. Carole Brown writes with authority on: 
World War II and its affects on our world especially Germany and the United States, figure skating, spies, and military life in general. I absolutely love history and love learning more about our world and this book did not disappoint. I learned more about WW II.  I found myself drawn into this book from the first page and it kept a hold of me until the end. Carole Brown's style of writing put me right there in the book, being a part of the story. The characters in this book are well written and real people with real problems. I found Josie being my favorite character. Her zest for life, her passion for skating and her husband admirable. I was also drawn to her sense of humor in the face of danger.  This book is the second volume of this series but definitely can be read as a stand alone. Carole Brown made sure that new readers didn't feel lost and that readers who read the first volume weren't bored with details. I found myself holding my breath in places, crying in some, and laughing in others. I definitely am going back and reading the first volume of this series and can't wait to read more from Carole Brown. I have definitely found a new author to add to my list of favorites. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, you will NOT be disappointed. I give this book 5 STARS.



 A Flute in the Willows copy

About the Book

Book Cover Front A Flute In The Willows
  

Book Title: A Flute in the Willows
  
Author: Carole Brown
  
Genre: Historical, Romantic Suspense

Both rebels in their own way, Josie and Jerry Patterson must figure out how to keep the other’s love…and keep the German enemy at bay. She has two loves—her skating and Jerry, her husband. But when he returns home looking like a skeleton trying to return to life, she’s scared. What happened in Germany to change a man so much? Has another woman captured his heart? Jerry has vowed to let Josie live her own glamourous life…especially after what happened in Germany. But when his wife’s life is threatened, Jerry realizes he can’t stand by and do nothing. Jerry has to risk all for the very soul and life of himself—Josie. These two damaged, rebellious people learn the hard way that leaning on God instead of their ownselves and abilities is the only true way to love and happiness.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Carole Brown

Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Guest post from Carole Brown

How Great is Our God! By Carole Brown And the peace of God which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7 It seems everywhere you turn today, the world is a mess. I try to keep up with current events, but sometimes I find myself pulling back away from it all. The enemy of us all would drown us in disbelief, doubt and worry if we would allow it. I find my spirit beginning to flounder in that sea of distress and must need revive it with the good things of God. In my newest WWII Spies series, in book two, soon to be released, both Jerry and Josie Patterson are rebellious, self-centered people. Neither have given much thought to God, and both have gone gung-ho after their own pleasures and desires.
  • Jerry not only suffers a serious physical injury, but his spirit is troubled over actions taken as a spy in Germany. Guilt over the death of a sweet woman, guilt over all the deceit he needed to use, guilt over the temptations that knocked, and though he didn’t give in to them, nevertheless, troubles his mind and soul. Who do you turn to when you have no God in your life?
  • Josie, filled with elaborate plans on becoming an Olympic participant once the horror of war is over, ignores all the people in her life—except when it’s convenient for her to use them. All that matters is attaining her goal and Jerry. Running roughshod over all others, forgiving and forbearing as they are, is her usual ploy in getting what she wants. So who do you turn to when all your dreams turn to ashes?
It’s only after each one of them receive a severe injury that prevent them from doing what they want, only when they think they’ve lost the other, that they begin to listen to what God is teaching them. Isn’t that so in our own lives? Many times we go headstrong toward our goals, without prayer or definite assurance from God that it’s what he wants for us. It seems a good thing, beneficial, and desirable so it must be good for us, right? God is so great, so faithful, so loving in pulling us back, in teaching us that He is our all in all. Our strength in times of deep distress and trial, our anchor when the storms of life are blowing us off course, our shield when others would hurt or wound our spirits…our peace through it all. May we, like Josie and Jerry, learn that our God IS a great God. We need have no fear; he does not fail.

Blog Stops

Multifarious, March 30
A Greater Yes, March 31
Simple Harvest Reads, April 2 (Guest post from Mindy)
Carpe Diem, April 3
margaret kazmierczak, April 4 (Interview)
Bigreadersite, April 5
Reading is my Super Power, April 5 (Interview)
Pause for Tales, April 6
Artistic Nobody, April 7 (Spotlight)
Among the Reads, April 9

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Carole is giving away a grand prize of a canvas flowered/musical tote, a pink “All Things are Possible journal, and a copy of A Flute in the Willows (winners choice of print or ebook)!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
https://promosimple.com/ps/c9e2 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Soul's Prisoner Portraits of Grace #2 By Cara Luecht

I received this book from Celebrate Lit Blogger Program and the author for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.
Book Description:  
She'll fight for her future...but can she escape her past?
  Chicago, Winter, 1891
Rachel is in danger. She s seen too much.
She creeps along the cement walls through the dank underbelly of the asylum. She d never planned to leave her quiet farm life, never thought she d find a place in the city, never imagined she d be in the kind of danger that would have her cowering in Dunning s cold, labyrinthine basement.
Jenny has finally found her place. After a childhood of abuse, she has friends, a real job, and her only wish is to give her adopted son the kind of life she never had.
A life of stability, without the risk and uncertainty of a father.
But when Jeremy, Rachel s brother, stumbles into their warehouse, asking for help to find his missing sister, Jenny s carefully constructed life begins to crumble.

My Thoughts: 

 Soul's Prisoner is the latest book in Cara Luect's series, Portraits of Grace, and it is a fantastic. As a fan of Christian Historical Fiction this book intrigued me. The cover really drew me to this book. It definitely depicts what is in this book. Added bonus, Cara Luect lives in WI, which is where I live so it's great to support a local author! Cara Luect writes with authority about the way of life in our country especially Chicago during 1891, asylums, mental health, painting, and art. As a Christian Historical Fiction, for me the best part is learning about things and Cara Luect gave me lots of information that made me curious and so it was great to find the info online and learn more. I found Cara Luect's style of writing unique and she seamlessly transitions throughout the book between a few stories with in a story. Her way of writing made me feel like I was there in this story, part of it. The characters are well rounded and well written. I found myself drawn to Jenny. Her selflessness and concern for everyone is inspirational. Her faith is unwavering. Soul's Prisoner is the 2nd book in this series, but is great as a stand alone, I never felt like I was lost through the book. This book is one that will stay with me for a while, it touched me in a way that this story will not be forgotten.   This is the first book by Cara Luect I have had the pleasure of reading and I plan to read more from Cara Luect. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, you will NOT be disappointed. I give this book 5 STARS.



 Souls prisoner celebration tour copy

About the Book

Soul's Prisoner front
  

Book Title: Soul’s Prisoner  
Author: Cara Luecht  
Genre: Historical fiction with some suspense and romance  
Release Date: December 15, 2015  
Chicago, Winter, 1891 Rachel is in danger. She’s seen too much. She creeps along the cement walls through the dank underbelly of the asylum. She’d never planned to leave her quiet farm life, never thought she’d find a place in the city, never imagined she’d be in the kind of danger that would have her cowering in Dunning’s cold, labyrinthine basement. Jenny has finally found her place. After a childhood of abuse, she has friends, a real job, and her only wish is to give her adopted son the kind of life she never had. A life of stability, without the risk and uncertainty of a father. But when Jeremy, Rachel’s brother, stumbles into their warehouse, asking for help to find his missing sister, Jenny’s carefully constructed life begins to crumble.
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

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Award winning author, Cara Luecht, lives in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin with her husband, David, and their children. Cara graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Currently, Cara is studying for a Masters of Divinity at Fuller Theological Seminary.

Guest Post from Cara Luecht

The Setting for Soul’s Prisoner: Dunning Asylum for the Insane Dunning Asylum for the Insane was built in the 1850s and housed psychiatric patients until the early 1900s. It has since been demolished, and a small park currently stands as the only remaining testament to the people who lived and died on the grounds. The original plot of land also included a poor farm and a cemetery. A railroad used to connect the grounds to Minneapolis, Chicago, and Milwaukee. It was nicknamed the “Crazy Train”—a phrase that still survives in our language today. Those buried in the cemetery include Civil War Veterans, victims of the Chicago fire of 1871, orphans, paupers, and the residents of the asylum for the insane. Most estimates agree that nearly forty thousand people were buried on the grounds. There is no doubt that mental illness is hard on families, but in the 1800s, having a family member who struggled with mental illness was an embarrassment. With little understanding of mental health in general, and even less compassion for those who suffered, examples of this tragic response to the threat of mental illness can be seen in the numerous inmates who were there simply due to addiction or depression. There are even cases where women were committed because their families were humiliated by their giving birth outside the bonds of marriage. Often times, challenges with mental health were synonymous with the notion of moral failure or vice. Because of this, even many charities looked the other way when corruption or abuse was exposed. Reporters sometimes wrote about the horrors of the institutions, but once the sensational story was out, and the initial outrage worn away, few worried about the people who suffered on a daily basis. And because of the moral implication of mental illness, families commonly turned over their suffering members to the county, and later simply explained to friends that the person had died. And that is exactly what the mentally ill would do in the institution. Live there until they died, forgotten. And that’s how the story played out at Dunning, until late in the 1900s when developers began to dig the roads and foundations for a new neighborhood on the grounds of what was once the Asylum. At that time, Dunning, and the people who had resided there, were still within living memory, so when bones were unearthed, it was no mystery how they ended up on that patch of land. What had slipped from memory was the magnitude of the collective stories of suffering and hardship. For this novel, the people and events are fictitious. However, when examining old news stories from an institution known for corruption, it is not hard to imagine situations like the ones in the novel. The details that are true are the nearly one thousand inmates, no hot water, little to no heat in the winter, bad food, and the general feeling of living ghosts, intentionally forgotten, and doomed to never leave the grounds.

Blog Stops

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Cara is giving away a grand prize of a signed copy of Soul’s Prisoner and sketching art supplies!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
https://promosimple.com/ps/cb74 

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Keturah:The Sugar Baron's Daughters Book 1 By Lisa Tawn Bergren

I received this book from Litfuse Publicity for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description: 

In 1772 England, Lady Keturah Banning Tomlinson and her sisters find themselves the heiresses of their father’s estates and know they have one option: Go to the West Indies to save what is left of their heritage.
Although unconventional, they’re determined to make their own way in the world. But once they arrive in the Caribbean, conventions are the least of their concerns. On the infamous island of Nevis, the sisters discover sugar plantations are in decline–and that’s just the beginning of their education in this harsh and unfamiliar world.
Keturah never intends to put herself a the mercy of a man again, but every man on the island seems to be trying to win her hand and, with it, the ownership of her plantation. She could desperately use an ally, but even an unexpected reunion with a childhood friend leaves her questioning his motives.
To keep her family together and save the plantation that is her last chance at providing for them, can Keturah ever surrender her stubborn and guarded heart to God and find the healing and love that awaits her?

My Thoughts: 

Keturah is the first book in Lisa T. Bergren's latest series, The Sugar Baron's Daughters and it is fantastic. I have read a few of Lisa T. Bergren's books and this one has to be my favorite! As a huge fan of Christian Historical Fiction this book definitely caught my attention. I absolutely fell in love with the cover, really giving life to this book. Lisa T. Bergren writes with authority about our world in 1772 especially England and The Caribbean, sugar plantations, keeping up all aspects of a plantation, and finding a way in a male dominated world.  I absolutely love Lisa T. Bergren's style of writing, she puts her readers right there in the story experiencing life as the other characters are. She writes strong characters that people can relate to. I have to say my favorite character is Keturah. The strength she had to care for her family, to ensure they don't lose everything, and her faith that sees her through all of the hardships. She fought for what was theirs and didn't give up. Very inspiring. I found myself unable to put this book down. From start to finish it kept me on the edge of my seat. I cannot say enough good about this book. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, you will not be disappointed. I cannot wait to read more in this series.
 I give this book 5 STARS.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Across The Blue By Carrie Turansky

I received this book for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own. 


Book Description: 

Set in Edwardian England and ideal for readers who enjoy Julie Klassen novels, this romance about an English aviation pioneer and the girl who falls in love with him is filled with adventure and faith.

Isabella Grayson, the eldest daughter of a wealthy, English newspaper magnate, longs to become a journalist, but her parents don't approve. They want her to marry well and help them gain a higher standing in society. After she writes an anonymous letter to the editor that impresses her father, her parents reluctantly agree she can write a series of articles about aviation and the race to fly across the English Channel, but only if she promises to accept a marriage proposal within the year. When James Drake, an aspiring aviator, crashes his flying machine at the Grayson's new estate, Bella is intrigued. James is determined to be the first to fly across the Channel and win the prize Mr. Grayson's newspaper is offering. He hopes it will help him secure a government contract to build airplanes and redeem a terrible family secret. James wants to win Bella's heart, but his background and lack of social standing make it unlikely her parents would approve. If he fails to achieve his dream, how will he win the love and respect he is seeking? Will Bella's faith and support help him find the strength and courage he needs when unexpected events turn their world upside down?



My Thoughts: 

Across The Blue is Carrie Turansky's latest novel and it is outstanding. As a fan of  Christian Historical Fiction, especially from the Edwardian England, Carrie Turansky is one of my favorite authors. Carrie Turansky writes with authority about Edwardian England, the world during this time, hierarchy and society, aviation, and journalism. I love Carrie Turansky's style of writing, her ability to write a story in a story is amazing and the details she gives in this book you can see all of the these characters, the clothes, and everything else in your mind's eye and makes you feel like you are right there.  The cover art of this novel is simply gorgeous and definitely gives a feel to what you find  between the covers. Across The Blue focuses on  the advancements of Aviation in the early 1900's. I live for learning about things from our history and this book definitely taught me a lot about aviation and the newspaper business. The characters in this book are so well written and feel like real people. I have to say my favorite was Isabella(Bella) Grayson. Her excitement for adventure, her determination to stand her ground, and her faith really spoke to me. From the first page until the last one I was hooked. This book kept me guessing and hoping until the end. I cannot do this book justice. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, especially Edwardian England you will not be disappointed. I cannot wait to read more from Carrie Turansky. 
I give the book 5 STARS. 




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About the Book

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Title: Across the Blue  
Author: Carrie Turansky  
Genre: Historical romance  
Release Date: February 20, 2018
Love soars to new heights in this Edwardian romance filled with adventure, faith, and inspiration, but how much will it cost Bella and James to follow their dreams? Isabella Grayson, the eldest daughter of a wealthy, English newspaper magnate, longs to become a journalist, but her parents don’t approve. They want her to marry well and help them gain a higher standing in society. After she writes an anonymous letter to the editor that impresses her father, her parents reluctantly agree she can write a series of articles about aviation and the race to be the first to fly across the English Channel, but only if she promises to accept a marriage proposal within the year. When James Drake, an aspiring aviator, crashes his flying machine at the Grayson’s new estate, Bella is intrigued. James is determined to win that race across the Channel and gain the prize Mr. Grayson’s newspaper is offering. He hopes it will help him secure a government contract to build airplanes and redeem a terrible family secret. James wants to win Bella’s heart, but his background and lack of social standing make it unlikely her parents would approve. If he fails to achieve his dream, how will he win the love and respect he is seeking? Will Bella’s faith and support help him find the strength and courage he needs when unexpected events turn their world upside down?

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About the Author

Carrie

Carrie Turansky has loved reading since she first visited the library as a young child and checked out a tall stack of picture books. Her love for writing began when she penned her first novel at age twelve. She is now the award-winning author of nineteen inspirational romance novels and novellas. Carrie and her husband, Scott, who is a pastor, author, and speaker, have been married for more than thirty years and make their home in New Jersey. They often travel together on ministry trips and to visit their five adult children and five grandchildren. Carrie leads women’s ministry at her church, and when she is not writing she enjoys spending time working in her flower gardens and cooking healthy meals for friends and family. She loves to connect with reading friends through her website, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Guest Post from Carrie Turansky

Following your Dreams By Carrie Turansky In Across the Blue, Bella Grayson and James Drake both go to great lengths to pursue their dreams. Bella longs to become a journalist and write for one of her father’s newspapers, but in 1909 England, aristocratic young women did not work as journalists. A young woman’s path was set by the unwritten rules of society. At eighteen she was presented at court, and then she took part in the London social season and hoped for a marriage proposal from a young man from a wealthy family, with an estate and title. Marriage, having children, and taking part in social and charitable events was the prescribed course for their lives. But Bella has a different future in mind. She wants to marry for love, and she won’t settle for anything less. She also wants to write articles about the important events of the day that will inform and inspire people. She wants to be a world changer, and that is a very unique role for a woman in England in the Edwardian Era. At that time women didn’t have the right to vote yet and very few pursued any kind of career. James is an aviation pioneer, and his dream is to build an airplane that will allow him to be the first to fly across the English Channel. This is no easy accomplishment, and he faces many challenges as he pursues his dream. Aviation is brand new. Wilbur Wright demonstrated his airplane in France the year before and stunned Europeans with his skill. With the help of his mentor, Professor Steed, James conducts experiments, refines his design, and makes countless test flights. It takes great courage and determination to overcome setbacks and make it through near fatal crash landings, but James has his heart and mind set on perfecting his airplane and reaching his goal. What about you? What hopes and dreams do you have for your future? What goals would you like to accomplish? As you think about your dreams and future plans I hope you’ll gain some insight from James and Bella’s experiences in Across the Blue. When they considered the cost of pursuing their dreams they realized their plans and choices impacted others as well as themselves. James and Bella believed striving for their dreams is important, but they learned it must be balanced with commitments to family and friends, and most of all a commitment to following the Lord on the path He has for them. Following our dreams and working toward accomplishing our goals, especially those the Lord puts on our heart, is important. However, sometimes we may have to put our dreams on hold and wait for the right time and season. We don’t need to be discouraged when this happens. As we listen to the Lord and ask Him to guide and direct us He will show us the right path at the right time to follow it. Just like James and Bella I hope you’ll pursue your dreams but also hold them with an open hand, allowing the Lord to guide and direct you each step of the way. When you do I’m confident you’ll be headed toward seeing your dreams become reality in His time and in His way. “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord; plans to prosper you, not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 With that wonderful promise in mind, I hope you’ll enjoy reading Across the Blue and joining Bella and James as they they pursue their dreams. You’re in for high-flying adventure, romance, and inspiration, and I can’t wait to share this new story with you. Happy reading to you!

Blog Stops

Bookworm Mama, February 22
Carpe Diem, February 22
Blogging With Carol, February 22
Karen Sue Hadley, February 23
Christian Bookaholic, February 24
Mary Hake, February 24
Among the Reads, February 24
The Power of Words, February 25
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, February 25
Maureen’s Musings, February 26
Rachel’s Back Talk, February 26
Smiling Book Reviews, February 26
Radiant Light, February 27
Faithfully Bookish, February 27
Bibliophile Reviews, February 28
Remembrancy, February 28
Book by Book, March 1
Bigreadersite, March 1
Pause for Tales, March 2
margaret kazmierczak, March 2 (Interview)
Pursuing Stacie, March 3
Simple Harvest Reads, March 4 (Guest post from Mindy)
Baker Kella, March 5
A Greater Yes, March 6
Henry Happens, March 7

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Carrie is giving away a grand prize of an autographed copy of Shine Like the Dawn and $30 gift card to Christianbooks.com!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
https://promosimple.com/ps/c987