Saturday, September 8, 2012

Winners and My Review of Love's Reckoning

The "End of Summer Bash" is always such a fun event to host - thanks to wonderful authors who give of their time (and their books!) to make this a festive occasion, and thanks to dear readers who stop by to share their enthusiasm and excitement! So thank you so much to the authors and readers who made this year's event a good time! =)

Now, here are the winners of this week's giveaways (chosen using the "List Randomizer" on Random.org):
  • Abbi Hart won a copy of With Every Letter!
  • Amanda Moring won a copy of Veil of Pearls!
  • Lacee Hogg won her choice of one of the "Tales of Goldstone Wood" books!
  • Melanie won an e-copy of Fair Valley Refuge!
  • Abbi Hart won a copy of Love's Reckoning!
Congratulations to all the winners! Be looking for my e-mail, and please respond by Wednesday (September 12th), or another winner will be chosen. Thank you once again to the authors for the great giveaways!

And now here is my review of Love's Reckoning (by yesterday's guest, Laura Frantz!) for the Revell Blog Tour...

Here's a description of the book from Revell:

"On a bitter December day in 1784, Silas Ballantyne arrives at the door of blacksmith Liege Lee in York County, Pennsylvania. Silas is determined to finish his apprenticeship quickly and move west. But because he is a fast worker and a superb craftsman, Liege endeavors to keep him in York by appealing to an old tradition: the apprentice shall marry one of his master's beautiful daughters.

Eden is as gentle and fresh as Elspeth is high-spirited and cunning. But are they truly who they appear to be? In a house laced with secrets, each sister seeks to secure her future. Which one will claim Silas's heart--and will he agree to Liege's arrangement?

In this sweeping family saga, one man's choices in love and work, in friends and enemies, set the stage for generations to come. This is the Ballantyne Legacy."

My Rating

Spring/Summer

My Review

Ever since my first "trip" to the American frontier with author Laura Frantz (in The Frontiersman's Daughter), I've been awed and swept away by her writing style. Frantz writes historical romance in a sweet, rich way that somehow manages to be humble while still maintaining a sense of grandeur and mystique.

Love's Reckoning continues that trend of excellence in characterization and setting descriptions and tension. It's a story of an unexpected love that is forced to face envy, misunderstandings, and hardships. It's a story of an enduring love that seeks the welfare of another and yet never completely loses sight of its own joy.

As the beginning of a series, this book maintains its own storyline - of how handsome and faith-filled Silas Ballantyne and the woman he loves (and who loves him) ultimately find their way together - while still introducing a broader storyline of a family's legacy that will take longer than one book to be resolved. While Love's Reckoning is certainly satisfying on its own, there's a certain character whose path I would like to know more about... And the teaser for the second book in the series definitely makes the reader's longing for more to the series that much more real!

I believe my favorite Frantz book remains Courting Morrow Little, but Love's Reckoning is anything but disappointing, as it is a well-written, beautiful love story that has its own unique, wonderful charm (as all of her books do).

*With thanks to Revell Publishing for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.*

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

16 comments:

Linda said...

Love your new fall look!

Amanda Stanley said...

Congrats to the winners!! Happy reading all :)

Amber, loved your review! CML was my favorite, but after Silas and Eden I'm not sure anymore, lol! Truly it's a toss-up for me as to which is my favorite - LR or CML... I think I love them both equally, as they are both so unique, it's hard to compare... or maybe it's because both heroes stole my heart... ;) Though I loved TCL, too... Oh dear! Everyone of Laura's books become instant favorites, lol! But as far as LR, Silas and Eden were just perfect for each other *sigh* Silas is a hero I long to find and Eden is a heroine I'd love to become :)

Thanks for the fun week, Amber! You know to end the Summer, girl! AND, I LOVE your new blog design! Tell me about that cool pic at the top.

Blessings,
Amanda

Lynnette Bonner said...

Congrats to all the winners!

Great new look here on the blog, and a wonderful review of Laura's latest book. Thanks again, Amber, for having me as one of your guests this week. I had a blast!

Amber S. said...

Linda,

Thank you so much! It's always fun looking through the free backgrounds, picking the main picture, and then matching all the font colors (etc.) to the new design. :) I'm glad you like it!

~Amber

Amber S. said...

Amanda,

Hehehe, it definitely is hard to pick a favorite out of Laura's amazing books, huh? ;) I love what you said about Silas and Eden, though - Silas is definitely a wonderful hero, and Eden is a great role model in her thoughtfulness, gentleness, and faith. :)

Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed the review (yours is just fabulous, too!), and I'm glad you like the new blog design! I guess I am behind on things, as I usually explain each new blog design in some form or fashion...

The picture up top is one I took at the High Desert Museum near Bend, Oregon during our family vacation this summer. It was at the lumber mill, where they have a person dressed up and talking about what life was like back in the day when a couple of families would share the work and the use of the mill. I took the picture while looking around the place... I just love the tools set out and the brightness of the view outside the window. :) As far as the humility theme goes, I think it shows the hard work involved in this season - the darkness and the struggle and the effort in seeking God's will and living for others. It shows a dedication to family and the future. But the lovely view from the window, the bright glow, along with the lantern on the table, kind of gives a sense of hope and light in hard times, too.

OK, now I sound like I'm writing a school paper, LOL! I do enjoy looking for symbolism and such, as I'm sure you well know. ;)

Thank you for stopping by, dear friend!

~Amber

Amber S. said...

Lynnette,

I'm so glad you had a blast this week - I did, too! :) Thank you for helping to make it a great time!

And thank you for the kind words about the blog design and the review!

~Amber

Michelle said...

Congratulations to the winners! :)

Such a wonderful and thoughtful review,Amber! I always enjoy reading your thoughts on books. :)

Hope you're having a great weekend!

Amanda Stanley said...

Oh, you did not sound like a school paper! I'm happy you shared all that! I really like that pic and knew there must be something special to it. You explained it beautifully and now I like it even more! :)

And thanks for your kind words about my review :) Can't wait for book 2 in the Ballantyne Legacy!!

Blessings,
Amanda

Amber S. said...

Michelle,

Aww, that's very sweet of you to say! :) I love that book blogging gives us the opportunity to share thoughts on books with each other! Your reviews are wonderful and thoughtful, too!

And I hope you also have a great weekend! :) Thank you for stopping by!

~Amber

Amber S. said...

Amanda,

You're too kind! :) I'm glad you like the picture, though - I think sometimes my blog design ideas are a bit unconventional, so I'm happy to know they can still appeal to people!

As for book 2, doesn't it sound so good?? I can't wait to hear more about it, and to see what the second cover looks like... :) This is going to be quite the epic series!

~Amber

Julia said...

I love that picture, too. Especially after hearing your comments about it. Great review of Laura's latest book. Can't wait to dig into it myself. Sadly, often the review books pull me away from what I want to read. Although I generally enjoy the books I review too just have a tendency to overcommit to those reads.

Amber S. said...

Julia,

Oh, I'm glad! :) And thank you! I'm sure you'll love Love's Reckoning!

I know what you mean, though, about over-committing to those review reads... *sigh* Not that it's bad, but it kind of pushes the non-review reads to the back burner more often than not. But sometimes I squeeze in some of those fun reads. :) I'm certainly grateful that I never lack for reading material!

~Amber

Miranda said...

Congratulations to all winners! It was blast! Loved every minute of it and looking forward to the next one already! :):)

Amber S. said...

Miranda,

Aww, I'm so glad you had a great time this week! :) Thank you so much for your support!

~Amber

Faith Hope Cherrytea said...

cheers to the winners!
sorry to have missed out on Laura's ~ but appreciated your invite to party & spend time with the authors =)
HaPpY Autumn days, Amber, & congrats on your newest venture!

Amber S. said...

Faith Hope Cherrytea,

Thank you for stopping by! I'm glad you enjoyed the party overall! :)

And thank you so much for the kind well-wishes! Happy autumn to you, as well!

~Amber