Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A Lady in Disguise: The Daughters of Hampshire Book 3 By Sandra Byrd

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

Book Description: 

In this intriguing novel of romance, mystery, and clever disguise set in Victorian England, a young woman investigates the murder of her own father.

After the mysterious death of her father, Miss Gillian Young takes a new job as the principal costume designer at the renowned Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. But while she remembers her father as a kind, well-respected man of the Police Force, clues she uncovers indicate he’d been living a double life: a haunting photograph of a young woman; train stubs for secret trips just before his death; and a receipt for a large sum of money. Are these items evidence of her father’s guilty secrets? His longtime police partner thinks so.

Then Gillian meets the dashing Viscount Thomas Lockwood. Their attraction is instant and inescapable. As their romantic involvement grows, Gillian begins to suspect even Lockwood’s motives. Does Lord Lockwood truly love her? Or is his interest a front for the desire to own her newly inherited property? And what should she make of her friend’s suggestion that Lockwood or men like him were involved in the murder of her father?

Soon Gillian is convinced that her father has left evidence somewhere that can prove his innocence and reveal the guilty party. But someone wants to stop her from discovering it. The closer she comes to uncovering it, the more menacing her opposition grows. With her life on the line, Gillian takes on an ingenious disguise and takes on the role of a lifetime to reveal the true killer—before it’s too late both for her and for those that she loves.


My Thoughts: 

A Lady in Disguise is the latest book in Sandra Byrd's series, The Daughters of Hampshire and it is just awesome. I am a huge fan of Sandra Byrd's and have read all three books in this series.  As a huge fan of Christian Victorian Era books these books drew my interest. I LOVE the cover of this book, really fits what is inside. Sandra Byrd writes with authority about Victorian Era, the world at this time, police procedure, the theatre, costume designing, and hierarchy.  This book had a little bit of everything in it: mystery, romance, action, suspense, and history. Each book in this series has gotten better and this third one I believe is the best yet! From cover to cover this is a good read. I couldn't put it down from page 1 until the end and this book kept me at the edge of my seat. The characters in this book are very complex and some are not what they seem. I really enjoyed Gillian and her girls. Four in total they took care of each other and support each other. Gillian thought she was saving them and she did but they also saved her. Gillian lost both her parents and as she tries to make sense of her fathers death and her mothers death years before. Gillian is a good Christian woman who does everything she can to honor her parents wishes and do right by them. I loved that she was a costume designer. I learned so much about costume designing and about the pantomime children of the theatre, what happens as they get older. I love history, even in fiction books there are a lot of of historical facts to learn about. I found myself laughing in parts of this book and in other parts crying not only because of sadness but also tears of joy. This book can be read as a stand alone but really recommend reading them all, you will NOT be disappointed.  I give this book 5+ STARS.
I also need to apologize to Sandra Byrd for the lateness of this review. I finished it a while ago but didn't post it right away. I am sorry.

Friday, May 5, 2017

The Joy of Letting Go: Releasing Your Teen into Real Life in the Big World By Vicki Caruana

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


Book Description: 

Parents let go of their children every day, even in ways they don’t realize. The 52 devotional readings within shine a light on all the times readers have loosened their grip on their children and encourages them to continue to let go in life-giving ways. Written by a parenting and education expert, The Joy of Letting Go will comfort and inspire parents in all seasons of parenting.

My Thoughts: 

The Joy of Letting Go:Releasing Your Teen into Real Life in the Big World is Vicki Caruana's latest devotional and it is a good one. This is the first book by Vicki Caruana I have had the pleasure of reading. I was drawn to the beautiful cover and the title. I am a mom of 3 children and we are beginning to empty our nest, which is something that has been a rough to wrap my head around. Our oldest is almost 21 years old and has gotten her first apartment, something that is part of the process of growing up but just never thought about it being real. We have a 19 yr old getting ready to graduate high school and 15 year old who in a few short years will be making his way in the world. Vicki Caruana opened my eyes that from the first steps, our children are becoming independent, bit by bit less dependent. I found this book to be almost a balm for me as I process my babies are not babies anymore and that little by little we have given them the independence for this day to come and how to feel happiness for them as they continue to grow.  I enjoyed each week of devotionals and plan to reread this book especially when I am down. I definitely learned much from this book and author. I highly recommend this book to any parent, this speaks to any stage of development and really gives encouragement. I cannot wait to read more from Vicki Caruana. I give this book 4 STARS. 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Behind The Scenes:Apart From the Crowd book one By Jen Turano

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

Book Description: 

Miss Permilia Griswold may have been given the opportunity of a debut into New York high society, but no one warned her she wasn't guaranteed to "take." After spending the last six years banished to the wallflower section of the ballroom, she's finally putting her status on the fringes of society to good use by penning anonymous society gossip columns under the pseudonym "Miss Quill."

Mr. Asher Rutherford has managed to maintain his status as a reputable gentleman of society despite opening his own department store. While pretending it's simply a lark to fill his time, he has quite legitimate reasons for needing to make his store the most successful in the country.
When Permilia overhears a threat against the estimable Mr. Rutherford, she's determined to find and warn the man. Disgruntled at a first meeting that goes quite poorly and results in Asher not believing her, she decides to take matters into her own hands, never realizing she'll end up at risk as well.

As Asher and Permilia are forced to work together and spend time away from the spotlight of society, perhaps there's more going on behind the scenes than they ever could have anticipated. . . .


My Thoughts: 

Behind the Scenes is the first book in Jen Turano's latest series, Apart From the Crowd, and it is great. As a huge fan of Christian Historical Fiction I have read a few of Jen Turano's books and this one did NOT disappoint. I love the cover and definitely an eye catcher. From cover to cover I couldn't put this book down. So much history and I love that because I learn about things I didn't know before. Jen Turano is one of the Top Ten Christian Historical writer.  I love her style of writing, it puts the reader right there in the middle of the events going on.  The characters in this book truly made me laugh very hard. Permilia and Asher's interactions reminded me of couples in old movies. Their fun was a much needed comic relief. I highly recommend this book and author to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, you will not be disappointed by any of Jen Turano's books. I felt this one was one of her best. The next book in this series is Out of the Ordinary, and I can't wait to read it! I give this book 4.5 STARS.  Please check out the information below to find out about the author, the book, and an interview with Jen Turano.



  
behind-the-scenes
 Click to order your copy

About the Book

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Book: Behind the Scenes  

Author: Jen Turano  

Genre: Inspirational Historical Romance  

Release Date: April, 2017

Miss Permilia Griswold may have been given the opportunity of a debut into New York high society, but no one warned her she wasn’t guaranteed to “take.” After spending the last six years banished to the wallflower section of the ballroom, she’s finally putting her status on the fringes of society to good use by penning anonymous society gossip columns under the pseudonym “Miss Quill.”

Mr. Asher Rutherford has managed to maintain his status as a reputable gentleman of society despite opening his own department store. While pretending it’s simply a lark to fill his time, he has quite legitimate reasons for needing to make his store the most successful in the country. When Permilia overhears a threat against the estimable Mr. Rutherford, she’s determined to find and warn the man. Disgruntled at a first meeting that goes quite poorly and results in Asher not believing her, she decides to take matters into her own hands, never realizing she’ll end up at risk as well.

As Asher and Permilia are forced to work together and spend time away from the spotlight of society, perhaps there’s more going on behind the scenes than they ever could have anticipated. . . .

About the Author

  jen-turano


Jen Turano, author of nine books and two novellas, is a graduate of the University of Akron with a degree in clothing and textiles. She is a member of ACFW and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Visit her website at www.jenturano.com.

Interview With Jen Turano

  1. What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you personally?

Amusing things happen to me all the time, but I think my favorite was back in college when I was a lifeguard. You see, there’s a lifeguard code – You will be cool at all times, especially when you’re sitting in a lifeguard chair, twirling your whistle exactly so, and, you know…looking cool. So, there I was, in my black lifeguard bathing suit – swinging my whistle. It was an unusually hot day, so I’d angled my umbrella exactly right as I watched the diving-board section. Now, I know this might come as a surprise, but being a lifeguard at the neighborhood pool isn’t exactly thrilling. It’s rare that anything exciting happens, and that particular day was no exception…until a large gust of wind came out of nowhere and the umbrella took it upon itself to close – right over me. And because it was now really gusty, the umbrella then lifted up, taking me with it right off the chair and into the depths of the deep end of the pool. From all accounts, it was quite the sight. First, there I was, swinging my whistle and looking groovy. Then all you could see were my legs flailing about as the umbrella covered the rest of me, and then…I was plummeting toward the pool, hit the water with the umbrella over me, and promptly sank. Obviously I managed to get out of the umbrella, but in the process, part of my bathing suit came off, and…well, that’s a story for another day.

  1. What is your favorite book from your childhood?

“Andrew Henry’s Meadow.” It was actually my little brother’s book, gotten from one of those book of the month clubs, but I loved it. I recently found a copy on an e-site and ordered it, and it’s just as delightful today as it was back in my childhood.

  1. Who does the cooking and cleaning in your house when you are on a deadline?

I don’t actually cook much even when I’m not on deadline, so that’s not really an issue. Al and I do a lot of salads or throw some chicken on the grill. We also have a lot of grocery stores that have wonderful deli and gourmet foods, so we get a lot of things there. As for cleaning, I’m one of those neurotic people who can’t work without everything being in place, so I do a lot of tidying up before I go to bed. And, because I do some of my best thinking when I clean, I’ve been known to abandon my writing when I get stuck and pick up a mop or cleaning rag, which means my house is rarely a disaster since I need to get unstuck a lot.

  1. Where is your favorite place to write?

I do the majority of my writing in my office, although I will occasionally take a pad of paper and a pen outside to handwrite when I get bored of my office or it’s a really nice day and I don’t feel like being trapped inside. It’s not that my office is my favorite place to write, it’s more that my writing is my job and I’m more focused on that writing when I approach it as such.

  1. What is your favorite part of the writing process?

I really like when characters and new story ideas begin to fester. That normally happens when I’m in the midst of another series. By the time I’m done with whatever series I’m working on, the next series is pretty firmly set in my mind, which means I can jump right in as I wait for edits on recently completed work. My absolute favorite part of writing, though, is when I turn in the very final edit on a book and don’t see it again until it comes out in print. Although, I must admit, I’ve never, not once, read one of my books after it has gone to print. Seems rather pointless since I do always know how the book is going to end.

  1. Why did you choose the timeframe or setting this book is written in?

I’ve been wanting to set a book during Alva Vanderbilt’s famous costume ball of March, 1883, for years. Since I decided to slowly travel through the Gilded Age, I just reached 1883 on my plot timeline, so knew I was finally going to get to throw some characters into the very midst of Alva’s ball. It was a blast to write, loved going back to all my books on this particular ball and seeing the pictures, and only wish the Vanderbilt house at 660 Fifth Avenue was still standing so I could visit it in person to visualize the splendors located inside a little more clearly.

  1. What inspires you?

I think like most writers, I simply get inspired by the world around me. I love to people watch, and I love to imagine all sorts of outlandish scenarios as I do that watching. I also get inspired by reading the headlines of the daily papers, and by the research books I read. I also love to look through old photographs of the Gilded Age, and became intrigued with Alva Vanderbilt’s ball when I saw a picture of a young lady, Miss Kate Strong, with a stuffed cat on her head and wearing a choker necklace with the name Puss engraved on it. That was all it took for me to investigate the Vanderbilt ball further, delighted to discover it truly was a ball that only comes along every blue moon.

Blog Stops

April 27: The Scribbler
April 27: Genesis 5020
April 28: Back Porch Reads
April 29: Bookworm Mama
April 30: Radiant Light
April 30: Bigreadersite
April 30: Lane Hill House
May 3: Book by Book
May 5: Baker Kella

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jen is giving away a $25 Barnes and Noble Gift Card and the four books: After a Fashion, In Good Company, Playing the Part, Behind the Scenes!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/4664b04910/

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

A Fragile Hope By Cynthia Ruchti

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

Book Description: 

Josiah Chamberlain's life's work revolves around repairing other people's marriages. When his own is threatened by his wife's unexplained distance, and then threatened further when she's unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog, Josiah finds his expertise, quick wit and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken.
Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what's left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?
 


My Thoughts: 

A Fragile Hope is the latest book by Cynthia Ruchti and it great! I have read other books by this author and this one did not disappoint. This book really helped me to look at my own marriage that has lots of issues. I found from the start that this book really grabbed me and kept me until the very last sentence. This book was so real and put out there situations and emotions that all couples face throughout the course of a marriage including - infidelity, loneliness, sadness, love, faithfulness, depression and faith. The troubles that Josiah faces in his faith, his mind, and in his real life were heartbreaking to read, but as he took it one day at a time and trusted God to guide his path. I found it inspiring and something to aspire to do in my life.  I found myself feeling many emotions throughout this book including anger, happiness, hopeful, and heartbroken. I cried throughout this book as it really spoke to my own marriage and struggles. Cynthia Ruchti's writing is fantastic, I always feel like I am there in the story, part of it.  The characters in this book are very well written and very real. I don't think I have a favorite character because they each had their own influence on me. I did find Josiah and Karin marriage and issues something I can full relate to. As I am having make or break situations in my own marriage, it was eye opening. I cannot say enough good about this book and this author. I highly recommend this book to anyone who reads Christian Contemporary Fiction, or just Contemporary Fiction, you will not be disappointed. I look forward to reading more books by Cynthia Ruchti. Definite must read. I give this book 5+ STARS and I can only hope my review really conveys the right message.

 When your life's work revolves around repairing other people's marriages, what happens when your own marriage begins to fall apart? Find out what happens to Josiah Chamberlain in Cynthia Ruchti's new book, A Fragile Hope. Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what's left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?

Celebrate the release of A Fragile Hope by entering to win Cynthia's Sign of Hope Giveaway!


One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on May 3. The winner will be announced May 4 on the Litfuse blog.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Witch The Restoration Series Book Three By Denise Weimer

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

Book Description: 

The Restoration Trilogy: When Jennifer Rushmore accepts a brooding bachelor’s job offer to act as coordinator for the restoration of his family’s historic doctor’s house (WHITE), apothecary (WIDOW) and log cabin (WITCH) in a rural Georgia community, little does she know it’s her own heart that will undergo the greatest renovation. Three stories. Three centuries. Three lessons on the healing of the heart. And one buried mystery that threatens their redemption.

WITCH, Book Three: Having restored Michael Johnson’s ancestors’ house and apothecary shop and begun applying the lessons of family and forgiveness unearthed from the past, Jennifer Rushmore expects to complete her first preservation job with the simple relocation of a log home. But as her crew reconstructs the 1787 cabin, home to the first Dunham doctor, attacks on those involved throw suspicion on neighbors and friends alike. And while Jennifer has trusted God and Michael with the pain of her past, it appears Michael’s been keeping his own secrets. Will she use a dream job offer from Savannah as an escape, or will a haunting tale from a Colonial diary convince her to rely on the faithfulness of his love?

My Thoughts: 

Witch is the third book in Denise Weimer's Restoration Trilogy and all I can say is WOW! I have had the pleasure of reading the first two books, White and Widow, and I was hooked from the first book. As a fan of Christian Historical Fiction I was drawn to this story. The covers of these books are different and very interesting, giving me more reason to read these books. I am also a big fan of Denise Weimer's writing, discovered a new to me author from the first book. Each book covered each part of the job of restoring three different structures of Michael Johnson's familial land, The house, the apothecary, and the log cabin.  Witch covers the restoration of the log cabin, telling the story of the first Dunham doctor in 1787. Again in this story I learned more about the three generations covering 3 different centuries of this family. Denise Weimer transitions from past to present seamlessly which really isn't easy to do but she has mastered it. As I read this book I felt like I was there in Dunham watching and experiencing everything. There are many themes throughout this book and series but the ones that has stuck with me healing, forgiveness, and learning to trust God.  Three generations of healing, forgiveness, and learning to trust God. The characters in this book are very real and complex. I found myself drawn to Jennifer especially in overcoming her past, forgiving, and moving on to her future. As Jennifer grows in her faith in God, she opens herself up to all the possibilities. As someone who is working on overcoming things from the past, Jennifer's journey is one to admire. I learned many things in this book and the others especially about historic preservation, which I had never heard of before. I was excited to learn about something I had no idea about. I recommend reading the first two books in this trilogy to really understand and enjoy this series. I cannot say enough good about this book and the author. I cannot wait to read more from Denise Weimer and I highly recommend reading her books. I absolutely loved this series and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, you will not be disappointed.  I give this book and this trilogy 5+ STARS. Please check out some great information about Denise Weimer and her writing, also the giveaway being offered.  

 
witch FB cover
 

About the Book

COVER-WITCH._72RGB (002)

Book: Witch  

Author: Denise Weimer  

Genre: Modern romantic light suspense with a historical back story  

Release Date: April 1, 2017

The Restoration Trilogy: When Jennifer Rushmore accepts a brooding bachelor’s job offer to act as coordinator for the restoration of his family’s historic doctor’s house (WHITE), apothecary (WIDOW) and log cabin (WITCH) in a rural Georgia community, little does she know it’s her own heart that will undergo the greatest renovation. Three stories. Three centuries. Three lessons on the healing of the heart. And one buried mystery that threatens their redemption.

WITCH, Book Three: Having restored Michael Johnson’s ancestors’ house and apothecary shop and begun applying the lessons of family and forgiveness unearthed from the past, Jennifer Rushmore expects to complete her first preservation job with the simple relocation of a log home. But as her crew reconstructs the 1787 cabin, home to the first Dunham doctor, attacks on those involved throw suspicion on neighbors and friends alike. And while Jennifer has trusted God and Michael with the pain of her past, it appears Michael’s been keeping his own secrets. Will she use a dream job offer from Savannah as an escape, or will a haunting tale from a Colonial diary convince her to rely on the faithfulness of his love?

About the Author

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DENISE WEIMER holds a journalism degree with a minor in history from Asbury University. A former magazine writer, she is the author of romantic novella REDEEMING GRACE, The Georgia Gold Series (SAUTEE SHADOWS, THE GRAY DIVIDE, THE CRIMSON BLOOM, and BRIGHT AS GOLD – winner of the 2015 John Esten Cooke Award for outstanding Southern literature) and The Restoration Trilogy (WHITE, WIDOW and WITCH). Denise is a wife and swim mom of two daughters who always pauses for old houses, coffee and chocolate!

Guest post from Denise Weimer

The first thing I want to tell you about Witch is … it’s not scary! Hang with me, and I’ll share more about the title.

The Restoration Trilogy mixes a unique tonic … the budding of a romance and friendships in a humorous, small-town community, a splash of suspense, and spiritual and emotional healing. Check out the summaries above.

The restoration my parents did on a real life doctor’s house and apothecary shop inspired this series. As I watched them work and learn about the historical line of doctors associated with their property, I realized how much a physical restoration project can mirror the spiritual work God wants to do in each of us. And that’s exactly what happens with Michael and Jennifer, who both conceal areas of brokenness from their pasts. As they come together to restore his family buildings, the stories they uncover about his ancestors reveal truths they need to apply in their own lives:

  • Family connection from the 1920s story of Georgia Pearl as they restore the house (White)
  • Forgiveness from the 1860s story of Charlotte as they restore the apothecary (Widow)
  • Faithfulness from the 1780s story of Verity as they restore the log cabin (Witch)

The title of each novel – and the cover – reflects that struggle of the historical heroine. Eventually each, as well as Michael and Jennifer, learn that only God, the Master Renovator and the Great Physician, can heal their broken places.

So here’s your prescription, should you choose to accept it by entering into this grand prize giveaway!

Grand Prize Gift Basket From Durham Apothecary & Museum: Take from a homemade tea pocket one of the selection of special teas. While brewing thy favorite tea, dispense liberally from the tea cookie tin onto a china plate. Prop up thy feet and commence thy reading journey through a print copy of White, Widow AND Witch! After a goodly time of rest and reflection, take up thy quill (ahem, I mean set of decorative pens) and record pearls of wisdom in thy new journal. When they husband and children begin to grumble, rise with fresh vigor to prepare a meal from Farmer’s Almanac Colonial Cookbook.

Second place prize: an e-book copy of Witch (or any other one book of The Restoration Trilogy)

Blog Stops

April 21: A Greater Yes
April 26: Artistic Nobody
April 28: Pause for Tales
April 29: Bigreadersite

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Denise is giving away:

A Grand Prize Gift Basket From Durham Apothecary & Museum: Take from a homemade tea pocket one of the selection of special teas. While brewing thy favorite tea, dispense liberally from the tea cookie tin onto a china plate. Prop up thy feet and commence thy reading journey through a print copy of White, Widow AND Witch! After a goodly time of rest and reflection, take up thy quill (ahem, I mean set of decorative pens) and record pearls of wisdom in thy new journal. When thy husband and children begin to grumble, rise with fresh vigor to prepare a meal from Farmer’s Almanac Colonial Cookbook.

Second place prize: an e-book copy of Witch (or any other one book of The Restoration Trilogy)

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
To Enter click here

Friday, April 28, 2017

Alabaster By Chris Aslan

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

Book Description: 

Maryam is stuck in an abusive marriage, living with her in-laws, in a conservative, toxically religious Middle Eastern setting. A few years back, her father was given a jar of priceless perfume by a dying leper and it seemed as if their fortunes would improve, but then Maryam’s father contracted leprosy and was exiled by the village. Maryam and her brother, Eleazar, and sister, Marta, experience the shame and ostracism this brings. The precious jar that was meant to bring them freedom, but it only seems to have brought destruction. But rumours abound concerning a new doctor; perhaps hope is on the horizon.

My Thoughts: 

Alabaster is the latest book by Chris Aslan and WOW it is fantastic. This is the first book from Chris Aslan I have read and I am so glad I did. As a huge fan of Biblical Fiction I couldn't pass it up. The cover of this book is just beautiful and really grabbed me. The book description really piqued my interest. Chris Aslan writes with authority on the Bible, Middle Eastern history including the beliefs and the traditions,  and the hierarchy in this area and in the homes of the people. I could not put this book down. I enjoyed learning things about the Middle East and their history and traditions. Even though this is a fiction book, I learned a lot from the historical fact, which I love when I read a book that teaches me. I enjoy Chris Aslan's style of writing, definitely felt like I was there seeing it all.  The issues brought up in this book definitely are things we in the modern world still deal with. I found the characters complex. I found myself relating to Maryam and Marta both. Their faith helps them through all their trials and tribulations. I found their loyalty to each other and their strength admirable. From cover to cover this book is wonderful and I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Biblical Fiction, you will love it and find yourself a new author to read. I cannot wait to read more from Chris Aslan.  I give this book 5 STARS. 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

The NKJV Woman's Study Bible From Thomas Nelson Publishing and A Wonderful Giveaway

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

Bible Description: 

The Woman’s Study Bible poignantly reveals the Word of God to women, inviting them to receive God’s truth for balance, hope, and transformation. Special features designed to speak to a woman’s heart appear throughout the Bible text, revealing Scripture-based insights about how godly womanhood grows from a woman’s identity as a Christ-follower and a child of the Kingdom.
Now with a beautiful full-color redesign, The Woman’s Study Bible reflects the contributions of over 80 women from a wide variety of ethnic, denominational, educational, and occupational backgrounds. Since the publication of the first edition of The Woman’s Study Bible under the editorial guidance of Dorothy Kelley Patterson and Rhonda Harrington Kelley, this landmark study Bible has sold over 1.5 million copies.
Features Include:
  • Beautiful full-color design throughout
  • Detailed biographical portraits of over 100 biblical women
  • Thousands of extensive verse-by-verse study notes
  • Over 300 in-text topical articles on relevant issues
  • Insightful essays by women who are recognized experts in the fields of theology, biblical studies, archeology, and philosophy
  • Book introductions and outlines
  • Hundreds of full-color in-text maps, charts, time lines, and family trees
  • Quotes from godly women throughout history
  • Set of full-page maps of the biblical world
  • Topical index
  • Concordance

My Thoughts:

 The NKJV Woman's Study Bible is a fantastic study bible for women. Starting with the Bible itself, the cloth hard cover is beautiful and we see this design throughout the bible. There are articles by many women that are recognized by most of us women, these articles speak to how women in the Bible shaped history for all people. I loved reading the biographies of the women we have met throughout the Bible. The insight and the details that I never read before just amazed me, it was like getting to know old friends. I found myself drawn to many of the topics in this Bible but the one I really found myself drawn to the topic of Euthanasia in regards to Cain killing Abel. In this topic the title is God's Timing In Death. This topic gives explanations /clarity of Cain killing Abel. The definition of Euthanasia and how we as humans need to entrust mortality to God. After losing my Father last year this really gave me many things to think about. The unique part is it gave more notes on this subject and where to find them with what verses. This alone gave me the opportunity to dig deeper into the topic of death. The colorful nature of this Bible really caught my eye but the maps of the biblical world gave me a reason to pause.  As a grade schooler in a private school, we learned the different maps and had to draw and label them so these colored maps gave a new perspective of them for me. On a whole this Bible is just fantastic. I typically read NAB Bibles but this Woman's Study Bible NKJV version will definitely be the one I read in conjunction. I really loved this Study Bible from the pages to fill out for family history, the preface articles, to the how the chapters each start, and the index at the end. I highly recommend The NKJV Woman's Study Bible From Thomas Nelson Publishing to any woman you will not be disappointed. Also a great gift for any young woman, teen age girl, and preteen girl, it will really give them insights to the women of the Bible. I cannot wait to Grow in the word.   I give this Study Bible 5 + STARS. 

You're invited to receive God's truth for balance, hope, and transformation in the fully revised and redesigned The NKJV Woman's Study Bible. The new edition features a beautiful, full-color redesign and poignantly reveals the Word of God with Scripture insights and the contributions of more than eighty women from a wide variety of ethnic, denominational, educational, and occupational backgrounds. Special features designed to speak to a woman's heart appear throughout the Bible text, revealing Scripture-based insights about how godly womanhood grows from a woman's identity as a Christ-follower and a child of the Kingdom.

This spring, cultivate your heart's spiritual roots and enter to win the Grow in the Word Giveaway!


One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on April 27. The winner will be announced April 28 on the Litfuse blog.

Celebrate True To You By Becky Wade. Author Chat and Fun Giveaways


Raise your hand if you're ready for Becky Wade's new series! Celebrate the release of book one, True to You, with Becky and other readers on Facebook on May 4th during a fun author chat party at 8:00 PM EDT (that's 7:00 Central, 6:00 Mountain, & 5:00 Pacific)! Becky will be chatting about the book and answering your questions about the new series, and of course, there will be plenty of fun giveaways too!

Pre-order your copy of True to You so you're ready for a fun book discussion. Find out more about the book here.

Hope to see you on May 4 for Becky's True to You Facebook Party!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Murder For The Time Being By Joanie

I received this book from Celebrate Lit Blogging and the author, Joanie Bruce, for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own. 


Book Description: 

"You'll pay for this. I'll get you both."

Computer expert Lexi Wynn is frightened. Someone is after her, but she doesn't know why. Is it because of her past or because she was thrust into a deadly bank robbery and might identify the ones responsible? Escaping a failed kidnapping attempt and not sure who to trust, she hopes her specialized skills with computers might flush out the name of the killer. When a tall, dark, and handsome stranger rams into her truck with the hearse he's driving and puts his life in danger to save hers, can she ignore the attraction she feels for him to concentrate on the killers? Or is God the only one who can save her now?

Drew Sheffield is irritated when a cute lady stops abruptly in front of him and he plows into the back of her pickup. After their initial confrontation, flashbacks of honeysuckle and sassy green eyes linger in his thoughts. When Lexi is threatened, he steps in to help the feisty young woman, in spite of agonizing over a past relationship.


My Thoughts: 

Murder for a Time is the latest book by Joanie Bruce and it is fantastic. This is the first book by Joanie Bruce that I have had the pleasure of reading, I have found myself a new must read author.  As a huge fan of Christian Mystery Fiction I was immediately drawn to this book add to that to the beautiful cover art and I was hooked! Joanie Bruce writes with authority about witness protection, legal system, medical field, the US especially Chicago and Georgia, the ins and outs of banking and how someone could rob a bank, and definitely computer skills. I truly enjoyed this book, right from the first lines of this book the action started and kept me guessing until the end. This was a hard book to put down. I really enjoyed Joanie Bruce's writing, especially her seamless way she transitions between past and present. I found the characters well written and complex. I found myself drawn Lexie. Lexie is a no nonsense  kind of girl who is very independent and kind of stubborn. I loved her spunk, her attitude , her faith, how strong she is through the book, and how far she will go to protect those she loves. A wonderfully written character. I found myself unable to put this book down from start to finish and definitely took twists and tuns I didn't expect, definitely keeps you guessing.. Now if you enjoys Christian Mystery Fiction or a fan of Mystery novels,I HIGHLY recommend it this will not disappoint.
   
Murder for the Time Being
 
Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

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Book: Murder for the Time Being  

Author: Joanie Bruce

Genre: Christian Suspense/Romance

Release Date: November 29, 2016

“You’ll pay for this. I’ll get you both.”

Computer expert Lexi Wynn is frightened. Someone is after her, but she doesn’t know why. Is it because of her past or because she was thrust into a deadly bank robbery and might identify the ones responsible? Escaping a failed kidnapping attempt and not sure who to trust, she hopes her specialized skills with computers might flush out the name of the killer. When a tall, dark, and handsome stranger rams into her truck with the hearse he’s driving and puts his life in danger to save hers, can she ignore the attraction she feels for him to concentrate on the killers? Or is God the only one who can save her now?

Drew Sheffield is irritated when a cute lady stops abruptly in front of him and he plows into the back of her pickup. After their initial confrontation, flashbacks of honeysuckle and sassy green eyes linger in his thoughts. When Lexi is threatened, he steps in to help the feisty young woman, in spite of agonizing over a past relationship.

Can Lexi and Drew forget the tragedies of the past and embrace the feelings between them or will ghostly memories snub out the promise of a future together?

About the Author

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Joanie has a strong passion for reading, and her love for books with nail-biting suspense, inspires her to write contemporary suspense books. Thankful that God has given her the ability to write from her home in the country, she strives to use that opportunity to honor Him in all of her writing. Joanie and her husband, Ben, live in a country home near Madison, Georgia, right in the middle of a pasture full of beef cows. There they raised and homeschooled their three children. She enjoys cooking, taking long walks, painting oil portraits, and caring for their home in the country.
 

Guest Post from Joanie Bruce

Have you ever been devastated by a certain event in your life, and later it turned out to the best thing that ever happened to you? That’s what happened to Lexi Wyn in this book, “Murder for the Time Being.” Something unthinkable happened to her family, but in the end, it changes Lexi’s life forever and introduces her to the love of her life.

In this story, both Lexi and Drew have things in their past that discourage them from seeking a lasting relationship. However, God has a plan for them both, and through His Divine engineering, they are thrown together in circumstances that nurture a growing appreciation and affection for each other.

This book was fun to write because I anchored the story in my sweet little town of Madison, Georgia. I wasn’t raised in Madison, but I’ve called it home for much longer than any other place I’ve ever lived. While growing up in the big city of Memphis, Tennessee, I had definite plans for my future. All I ever wanted was to “marry a country boy and live in the country.” The Lord heard the desires of my heart and gave me what I wanted … a country boy, born and raised here in Morgan County on a dairy farm.

After we married, I adopted Madison as my home, and I love it so much that I wanted to feature some of the fun spots in Madison as the backdrops for the scenes in my books. I hope when you read through the pages of my book, you will get an idea of what a sweet little town Madison is and enjoy reading about Lexi and Drew and how they let God guide them in discovering that murder CAN be “for the Time Being.”

Blog Stops

March 15: autism mom
March 17: A Greater Yes
March 18: Radiant Light
March 20: Karen Sue Hadley
March 24: Pause for Tales
March 24: 2014 and Beyond!
March 26: Carpe Diem

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Joanie is giving away a Kindle Fire!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/b291

Friday, March 24, 2017

The Elusive Miss Ellison (Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace) By Carolyn Miller

I received this book from Kregel Publications and Carolyn Miller for no charge in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed here are my own. 

Book Description: 

Pride, prejudice and forgiveness...
Hampton Hall's new owner has the villagers of St. Hampton Heath all aflutter--all except Lavinia Ellison. The reverend's daughter cares for those who are poor and sick, and the seventh Earl of Hawkesbury definitely does not meet that criteria. His refusal to take his responsibilities seriously, or even darken the door of the church, leave her convinced he is as arrogant and reckless as his brother--his brother who stole the most important person in Lavinia's world.

Nicholas Stamford is shadowed by guilt: his own, his brother's, the legacy of war. A perfunctory visit to this dreary part of Gloucestershire wasn't supposed to engage his heart, or his mind. Challenged by Miss Ellison's fascinating blend of Bluestocking opinions, hoydenish behavior, and angelic voice, he finds the impossible becoming possible--he begins to care. But Lavinia's aloof manner, society's opposition and his ancestral obligations prove most frustrating, until scandal forces them to get along.

Can Lavinia and Nicholas look beyond painful pasts and present prejudice to see their future? And what will happen when Lavinia learns a family secret that alters everything she's ever known?


My Thoughts: 

The Elusive Miss Ellison is the first book in Carolyn Miller's series, Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace Book 1 and it is great! I love to read debut authors and this is Carolyn Miller's debut. I found myself drawn to this book because of the fact it's a debut and the fact that it is a Victorian Era setting. The cover is beautifully done and the book description really grabbed me! Carolyn Miller writes with authority on the Victorian Era, England, life as a Reverend and as a reverends family, the hierarchy of this time and place, and the lines of royalty. I enjoyed this book very much. From start to finish this book grabbed me until the end. I truly loved Carolyn Miller's writing style, I found myself feeling that I was there with the characters throughout the book.  The characters are well written and very relateable.Their lives aren't perfect regardless of their status and they struggle with life's ups and downs. My favorite character is Lavinia. She is a strong woman who goes against the society's norms to be herself and find her way. Her faith and her heart for the poor and the sick in their congregation is just remarkable. She works very hard to be a good example. Lavinia has her own issues that I found I could relate to and found her journey inspiring. I really enjoyed this book from start to finish and highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Jane Austen type books and/or Victorian Era books, you will not be disappointed! I cannot wait for the next book by Carolyn Miller which is set to release in June of this year. I give this book 5 STARS.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Shine Like the Dawn By Carrie Turansky

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: 

In a quiet corner of northern Edwardian England, Margaret Lounsbury diligently works in her grandmother's millinery shop, making hats and caring for her young sister. Several years earlier, a terrible event shattered their idyllic family life and their future prospects. Maggie is resilient and will do what she must to protect her sister Violet. Still, the loss of her parents weighs heavily on her heart as she begins to wonder if what happened that day on the lake...might not have been an accident.
When wealthy inventor and industrialist William Harcourt dies, his son and Maggie's estranged childhood friend, Nathaniel, returns from his time in the Royal Navy and inherits his father's vast estate, Morningside Manor. He also assumes partial control of his father's engineering company and the duty of repaying an old debt to the Lounsbury family. But years of separation between Nate and Maggie have taken a toll, and Maggie struggles to trust her old friend.
Can Maggie let go of the resentment that keeps her from forgiving Nate--and reconciling with God? Will the search for the truth about her parents' death draw the two friends closer or leave them both with broken hearts?


My Thoughts: 

Shine Like the Dawn is the latest book by Carrie Turansky and I absolutely loved it. I have read a few books by Carrie Turansky and have many in my TBR pile that I have definitely have to bring out to read.  As a fan of Christian Historical Fiction, Carrie Turansky really covers my need to read. I loved the cover, a beautiful scene that stands out, catching your eye. Carrie Turansky writes with authority on Edwardian history, England and Europe during the early 1900's, the Royal Navy and the wars during that time, hierarchy, and millinery. I love historical fiction for many reasons but the biggest is because I love to learn more about different times in our history. This book is a work of fiction but there are many facts in there that had me going to Google to learn more.  I found the characters in this book very complex and dealing with real life issues, showing that no matter what your status struggles happen for everyone. I really found a connection with Maggie Lounsbury. A strong woman who is raising her little sister after they lost the rest of their family. She is someone who takes care of those around her and protects herself in order to survive. Her renewal of faith is inspiring. As a side I did also enjoy Violet Lounsbury, Maggie's little sister, is such a cute character and she really helps make this story. From start this book grabbed a hold of me, making me want to read more until the end. I could not put this book down. I found myself laughing in many portions, holding my breath, and crying in the others.  This book has a little bit of everything romance, suspense, heart break, and action. This book is a must read for anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, especially during the Edwardian times. I highly recommend this book and cannot wait to read more from Carrie Turansky. I give this book 5+ STARS.  Please check out below to learn more about this fantastic author and her writing. 


 
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About the Book

 
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Book: Shine Like the Dawn  

Author: Carrie Turansky  

Genre: Historical

In a quiet corner of northern Edwardian England, Margaret Lounsbury diligently works in her grandmother’s millinery shop, making hats and caring for her young sister. Several years earlier, a terrible tragedy reshaped their family, shattering an idyllic life and their future prospects. But Maggie is resilient and will do what she must to protect her sister Violet. Still, the loss of her parents weighs heavily on her heart and she begins to wonder if what happened that day on the lake…might not have been an accident.

When wealthy inventor and industrialist William Harcourt dies, his son Nathaniel, who is Maggie’s estranged childhood friend, returns from his time in the Royal Navy and inherits his father’s vast estate, Morningside Manor. He also assumes partial control of his father’s engineering company and the duty of repaying an old debt to the Lounsbury family. But years of separation between Nate and Maggie have taken a toll and Maggie struggles to trust her old friend.

Can Maggie let go of the resentment that keeps her from forgiving Nate—and reconciling with God? Will their search for the truth about her parents’ death draw them closer or will it leave them both with broken hearts?

About the Author

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CARRIE TURANSKY is an award-winning author of more than a dozen novels and novellas. She has been the winner of the ACFW Carol Award, the Crystal Globe Award, and the International Digital Award, and a finalist for the Inspirational Readers Choice Award and the Maggie Award of Excellence. A prolific writer of contemporary and historical romance, women’s fiction, short stories, articles, and devotionals, Carrie lives in central New Jersey with her husband Scott. They have five adult children and four grandchildren.

Guest Post from Carrie Turansky

Hats, Glorious Hats!

 

By Carrie Turansky

 

One fun part of my research for Shine Like the Dawn was learning about hat making in the early 1900s. My heroine, Maggie Lounsbury is a milliner who designs women’s hats. She learned this skill from her grandmother who owns a small shop in the village of Heatherton. Maggie has an artistic eye and she enjoys making stylish hats, but she doesn’t like the overdone designs some of their customers request, so that creates some humorous conflict in the story.

Hats in the Edwardian era were large and often covered with feathers, flowers, lace, netting, berries and bows. The “bird nests,” as Coco Chanel called them, were held on with large hat pins stuck through piles of hair on the crown. These hats were called Gainsborough or Picture hats because of the way they framed a lady’s face. They often featured huge dried flower arrangements and sometimes included real leaves and twigs! No doubt the Garden hat was a fitting name. 1907 The Merry Window hat became very popular after the leading lady in the play by that same name wore a hat that was even taller and wider than usual. Some people complained these hats were too big and obtrusive in public places like the theater or picture shows. But English women loved them and wore them to all kinds of events.

The popularity of using large feathers and stuffed birds on hats caused concern for the welfare of birds. Many protective laws took effect and milliners had to use more ribbon and tulle and only large ostrich feathers to decorate hats. Those ostrich feathers came from birds that were raised on farms and their feathers were collected as they fell out naturally. The movement toward smaller hats began around 1913 when hats still had high crowns but smaller brims. Straw boaters, small top hats, and mini versions of picture hats were very common.

Motion pictures had the greatest influence on Edwardian hat fashion. After the release of The Three Musketeers many ladies wanted to wear tricorne and bicorne shaped hats. They were still very large but now had shapes other than just round. Hat brims were folded up on the side, at an angle, or all around to create drama. Veils disappeared in the early 1900s only to come back again as a long scarf that wrapped over the hat and under the chin for the new sport called motoring.

I’ve had fun dressing Edwardian style for book launch tea parties and other book events. It made me feel very special to wear these lovely hats. What do you think of Edwardian Hats? Would you like to wear one?

Thanks to friends at the Vintage Dancer website for some of this information.

Stop by Carrie’s Facebook author page and view her live videos February 21 – 25, 3:00 pm Eastern. She’ll be talking about the story behind Shine Like the Dawn and giving away a fun prize each day to one person who leaves a comment. Even if you can’t catch the live video you can still enter for 24 hours after it’s posted. She is also hosting a book launch celebration and giveaway on her blog February 25 – March 6.

Like to my Facebook Author page: https://www.facebook.com/authorcarrieturansky/
Link to my Book Launch Blog Post: http://carrieturansky.com/index.php/blog/

Blog Stops

February 21: New Horizon Reviews
February 21: Bookworm Mama
February 22: Book by Book
February 23: Bibliophile Reviews
February 23: Smiling Book Reviews
February 23: A Readers Brain
February 23: Faithfully Bookish
February 23: Lane Hill House
February 24: Back Porch Reads
February 24: The Scribbler
February 24: I Hope You Dance
February 25: Stuff & Nonsense
February 25: The Power of Words
February 25: A Greater Yes
February 26: cherylbbookblog
February 26: Moments Dipped in Ink
February 26: Splashes of Joy
February 27: Genesis 5020
February 27: inklings and notions
February 27: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS
February 28: Karen Sue Hadley
February 28: Neverending Stories
March 3: Pause for Tales
March 3: Mary Hake
March 4: Radiant Light
March 6: Baker Kella

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Carrie is giving away all 4 books: Shine Like the Dawn, The Governess of Highland Hall, The Daughter of Highland Hall, and A Refuge at Highland Hall.! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
https://promosimple.com/ps/b0fb