Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Conclusion of the How a Star Falls Blog Tour!

I'm always blessed by the friends and bloggers I get to work with for blog tours. And I'm doubly blessed to have the people who supported my historicals so kindly assist me in spreading the word about my first contemporary! No fallen star has ever received a warmer welcome in the blogosphere, to my way of thinking. ;)

Just as a reminder, How a Star Falls is now available in both Kindle ($1.99) and paperback ($6.64) formats! Read on for more end-of-tour news...
  
(I'm including some quote cards for How a Star Falls throughout the post, which were created in the pre-order phase using PicMonkey. If you've read my new novella, do feel free to share a favorite quote in the comments section! I'd love to hear what lines stood out to you.)


Winners!

We have three winners for this blog tour, and I'm very excited about the prizes. Hope the winners are, too! You can read/see more about the prizes in the initial tour post and in my updates post. Now, drumroll please...

The winner of Remember Sunday (DVD) and a signed copy of my novella is...
Amber M.!

The winner of An Airplane Carried Me to Bed (CD) and a signed copy of my novella is...
Hannah B.!

The winner of the seaside necklace, star earrings, and a signed copy of my novella is...
Maxie A.!

Congratulations to all of the winners, and thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway and commented on the tour posts! Winners, be sure to check your inboxes and respond to my email in order to claim your prizes. :)

P.S. If you would like another opportunity to win a paperback or Kindle copy of How a Star Falls, Rissi's giveaway is open for a few more days!


Writing Update

There really isn't a whole lot to report this time around on my other writing projects, as work and the promotion for this book have been keeping me busy! But keep your eyes on my Pinterest boards for my Secret Future Writing Project and Secret Future Writing Project 2, if you'd like to see what ideas are currently swirling around in my mind for upcoming stories. 

And don't forget to sign up for the quarterly Seasons of a Story newsletter to stay in the loop via email!


Acknowledgements

Special thanks to Shantelle, Jaye, Serena, Julie, Meghan, Laura, Amber, Britney, Faye, Meagan, Miranda, Kara, Rachelle, Courtney, Carissa, Rissi, Jansina, and Brooke. I'm so grateful to each one of your for your time, enthusiasm, and encouragement as you've helped me promote How a Star Falls. ♥

A very happy and joyful Thanksgiving to each one of you! May you be surrounded by hope, loved ones, and yummy food. :) 

Friday, November 21, 2014

Quick Blog Tour Updates

Hello, friends! I just wanted to let you know that I now have images for the missing How a Star Falls blog tour giveaway prizes. Here's the full cover for the paperback version of the book (available now on Amazon for $6.64!):

Designed by Stone Lily Design

And for the jewelry prize pack, in addition to the star earrings pictured in the original post, the winner will receive this lovely seaside necklace:


Designed by Belle on a Budget
(The three starfish are perfect!)

Want to enter to win these prizes and more? Visit the blog tour announcement post HERE!

Also worth nothing:
Thank you all for celebrating this release with me! Hope you're enjoying the tour so far, and have a bright and shiny weekend. :)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

My Review of This Quiet Sky

Here's a description of the book:

There is nothing extraordinary about Tucker O’Shay’s dreams. 

Go to college. Become president. Fall in love.   

And pretend like he has enough time to get it all done.

Sixteen-year-old Sarah Miller doesn’t expect anything out of the ordinary when she begins her first day at the one-room-school house in her new hometown of Rocky Knob. But when she meets seventeen-year-old Tucker O’Shay—the boy with the fatal illness who volunteers to tutor her in algebra—she finds herself swept up in a friendship that changes the way she sees the world and a love that changes her life.

You can purchase the novella now on Amazon.

My Rating

Summer

My Review

Sarah and Tucker's story floats through the heart with all the tender poignancy of a falling autumn leaf. Their friendship blooms sweetly, brightly. Grows into something as passionate and brilliant as the summer sun. And culminates in a season where beauty coexists with that which fades, causing bittersweet thoughts of that which lasts.

This Quiet Sky is a gentle but bold take on young-adult historical fiction. Penned in Bischof's signature descriptive and heartbreakingly heartfelt style, this novella is both unique and familiar—different, but also with that feeling of coming home to something meaningful.

Step with Sarah into the one-room schoolhouse. Meet Tucker, another irresistible hero with a blend of human vulnerability and endearing self-confidence. Get to know their families and the lasting lessons they all learn about life, hope, and love.

One conversation and the epilogue felt a little drawn out to me, as their impact might have hit that much harder had they ended sooner. However, the last paragraph before the epilogue pierced me through, and I'm glad that there was an epilogue and so many wonderful scenes and lines that made this such a touching read.

Atmospheric, memorable, honest. Like savoring a dream or happy recollection while gazing up into the quiet sky.

*With thanks to the author for providing me with an e-copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.*


View more poignant pins and book extras HERE.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

3...2...1... How a Star Falls Has Launched!



I'm so excited to introduce Derrick and Brielle to the world—the stars of my first new-adult contemporary romance novella! (Pun intended, naturally!) This project represents several firsts for me, actually: first published contemporary story, first book I offered for pre-order, and first time I hired another blogger to help with the marketing. While I'm still hosting my own blog tour, I wanted to try out a book blast with Kathy of I Am a Reader. So feel free to hop on over to her site to enter the $50 gift card giveaway! (But please do come back, as we'll be having lots of fun here, too. :))

Have I told you all how much fun I had writing this story? Seasons really are so important with my writing, and How a Star Falls fully came together this fall, after a lot of transitions in my life. It was such a blessing to look back at the home I love and the places God saw me through. And it was a blast to pen something more whimsical and modern in nature while touching on some of the deep questions new adults tend to ask. (Well, at least this new adult did!)

Here's the official blurb, in case you haven't seen it yet:

How does a star fall? 
Quickly. Completely. Unexpectedly. 

Derrick Knolane escapes to Trinidad Head most evenings, avoiding his apartment and planning for the day he'll break free of Humboldt County. Working in a music store might be fine for a while, but it's far from the goal he had in mind when he got his college degree. Not to mention the fact that his roommate is a jerk and his family won't stop trying to run his life.

Then Brielle falls into his world.

She claims to be a star. Not from Hollywood, but from heaven. He thinks she's crazy. Certainly delusional. Yet, he can't just leave her alone on the cliffs. So he takes her home.

And his whole world falls apart.

A heartfelt and fanciful contemporary romance novella, How a Star Falls explores the uncertain season of new adulthood and shows that sometimes the worst inconveniences make for the best miracles of all.

Purchase on Amazon 

The story is currently only available for Kindle, BUT a paperback version is in the works and is very close to completion! And let me tell you, it's going to be a cutie. :) A little novella with a gorgeous cover, wouldn't you agree? (S/O to Lena Goldfinch for another amazing design!)

Speaking of the paperback, would you like to win a copy? Well, let's get on to the details about the tour then!

Schedule

Tuesday, November 18th
Wednesday, November 19th
Thursday, November 20th
Friday, November 21st
Saturday, November 22nd
Sunday, November 23rd
Monday, November 24th
Tuesday, November 25th
Wednesday, November 26th
During the tour, you'll also find fun behind-the-scenes posts at The Heart's Spring.

A Special Starry Giveaway!

I'm really happy with how this giveaway came together. :) Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of all the prizes just yet, as one of them is still being crafted (a seaside-themed necklace) and the other is still in production (the paperbacks, which are simply awaiting the cover design and approval before they can be ordered). However, here's a glimpse of most of the prizes:


The signed books are pretty self-explanatory. Although I will add that they'll be a darling 5x8 size!

The DVD is Remember Sunday, which has become one of my favorite movies. Why that movie for this giveaway, though? Let's just say shooting stars and comets play a large thematic role in the story, and they even mention Orion—Brielle's constellation! Plus, the heroine (played by the girl from Tuck Everlasting) is a new adult, feeling at a standstill in life. The choices she makes and the questions she and Zachary Levi's character ask all tie in really well with How a Star Falls.

The CD is An Airplane Carried Me to Bed by Sky Sailing. Derrick mentions this band (Owl City's alter ego) in the first chapter of the book, and he listens to a song from the CD titled "Brielle." That song and the sound of the whole CD fit beautifully with How a Star Falls.

The lovely jewelry is crafted by Christy of Belle on a Budget. The star earrings are pictured, but there will also be a beach-themed necklace as part of that prize package. I'll hopefully be sharing a picture of that later this week!

The prizes are divided into 3 packages, as shown on the Rafflecopter form. Please note that this giveaway is limited to U.S. residents only due to shipping costs. Good luck to everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
P.S. Now is the perfect time to get caught up on my other books, if you're missing any! Bellflower (the short-story collection) is FREE for Kindle through Friday, and Forget Me Not is on a Kindle Countdown Deal through next Monday. Happy reading, friends, and thank you so much for helping me celebrate this occasion!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Cover Reveal: The King's Scrolls



Are you ready for this? The Ilyon Chronicles by Jaye L. Knight continues with Book 2, The King's Scrolls! (Curious about Book 1? Check out all the blog tour fun we had back in May!)

The book should be releasing in early 2015. Here's the blurb:
Following the harrowing events that brought them to Landale Forest, Jace and Kyrin have settled comfortably into their new lives and the mission of protecting those under the emperor’s persecution. The fast approach of winter brings with it the anticipation of a quiet few months ahead. That is until the arrival of four mysterious, dragon-riding cretes who seek aid in a mission of great importance—not only to their own people, but to all followers of Elôm.

Hidden in the vast mining valley north of Valcré, a faithful crete has spent years sharing his knowledge with the destitute miners and their families and is known to possess what may be Arcacia’s last surviving copies of the King’s Scrolls—the Word of Elôm. Joining the cretes, those in Landale must find the crete teacher and bring him to safety, but it is a race against time. Should Daican’s men find him first, execution and the destruction of the Scrolls is certain.

When disaster strikes, all seems lost. Could Elôm have a plan even in the enemy’s triumph?
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23456237-the-king-s-scrolls

And here's the cover!


My Thoughts

Jaye has some awesome branding going on with this series, and I love how clear it is through the covers that the books go together. (Click HERE to see Book 1 on Goodreads.) The images on this cover fit hand in hand with the title, and there's a definite sense of mystery in the darkness beyond the quill and even in the blank scroll. It says, "There's a story waiting to be written. Open the pages to discover it." :) Nicely done! And how fun is it that one of the giveaway prizes so perfectly matches the quill on the cover? Be sure to keep on reading to learn more about that...

Find a list of other cover-reveal participants on Jaye's blog today.

Excerpt from The King's Scrolls

The other younger crete took a swig of his coffee and set his eyes past her. Kyrin peeked over her shoulder at Kaden who, of course, was staring at the dragon. The female creature stared back in mutual interest.

“Go ahead,” the crete said suddenly. “You can touch her. She loves attention, and she’ll only attack if I tell her to.” A sly glint sparkled in his spring-green eyes.

Besides Jace, Kyrin had never seen anyone with such bright and colorful eyes as these cretes.

Kaden looked at him, his brows rising. “You can do that?”

The crete nodded. “Dragons are highly intelligent. You can teach them almost any command. Storm here is young, but she learns fast.”

Kyrin smiled at the delight in her brother’s eyes as he stepped closer to the dragon and ran his hand over her bluish-gray neck scales. A grin split his face.

“She’s so smooth. Kyrin, come and feel it.”

Kyrin stepped to his side and laid her hand on the dragon. The scales were indeed very smooth, reminding her of the polished marble stair-railings in Auréa Palace, but they weren’t cold. Warmth radiated through them. The dragon, still watching them, let out a little rumble, almost like a giant cat’s purr.

“I told you she liked attention,” the crete said, grinning.

Kyrin chuckled and glanced at Jace to see if he wanted to touch the dragon, but he made no move to come closer. This certainly had more to do with the crete than the dragon. He was very fond of any type of animal. She faced the crete again.

“So they can breathe fire?”

“For short bursts, but that’s usually all it takes to deter any threat.”

“That’s incredible,” Kaden breathed. While he continued admiring Storm, Kyrin observed the dragon’s rider. He appeared to be in his early to mid-twenties—about ten years younger than Captain Darq—though his exact age was impossible to guess. Cretes were said to mature faster than humans, so he could be anywhere from seventeen to twenty-five. He too wore a sleeveless jerkin. Brown tattoos, a little darker than his skin, marked both shoulders. Darq and the other cretes had them as well, but Kyrin hadn’t taken a good look at them until now. This man’s were a complicated pattern of spirals and dots, but the shape of a fox stood out in the center of his right shoulder. Though she tried to be discreet, he must have caught her studying him and suddenly extended his hand to her. “I’m Talas, by the way. Talas Folkan of the Fox Clan.”


About the Author

Jaye L. Knight is a homeschool graduated indie author with a passion for writing Christian fantasy and clean new adult fiction. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.


Giveaway!

To celebrate her revealing of the cover, Jaye is giving away one of her handcrafted quill pen necklaces and a $5 Amazon gift card! Enter for a chance to win using the form below! U.S. entries only please.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 13, 2014

New Release Announcement: The Fragrance of Geraniums

Happy book birthday to another fellow indie author's brand-new release, The Fragrance of Geraniums! Isn't the cover simply lovely? And the story sounds very heartfelt. Not to mention, it has a flower title, which is something you all know I can appreciate. ;) Enjoy learning more about this new book and its sweet author, Alicia!


Rhode Island - 1934

A Girl…

Grace Picoletti has nothing going for her – but she’s determined to succeed in life, nonetheless. Born to severe destitution, she claws her way up from the pit of family shame and secrets. She avoids close friendships – even with the likable, persistent Paulie Giorgi.

A Woman…

Despite her own agonizing emotional pain, childless Emmeline Kinner reaches out to a young woman so far beneath her. She could never have known whom else God would set in her path through her friendship with Grace.

A Mother…

Long ago, Sarah Picoletti resigned herself to a loveless, abusive life – and she believes that her daughter Grace must inherit the same fate. Yet Sarah’s own soul cries out for the blessed peace and hope of which the radio minister speaks.
Told from multiple perspectives, The Fragrance of Geraniums is a powerful story of three women – of the threads of mercy that connect them – and of heart-wrenching sorrows alchemized by the Heavenly Father’s overwhelming redeeming grace.
Purchase on Amazon | Add to Goodreads


A fourth-generation Rhode Island native, Alicia G. Ruggieri writes stories about the possibility of redemption for all things through the Cross and the cost of true mercy. With a degree in Communications and History, Alicia loves spending her days researching, writing, and caring for her family, and she avows that every life would be enriched through the addition of just one more dog. 
Connect with Alicia on her blog, Facebook, Goodreads, Google +, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Giveaway!

Alicia is offering a copy of the book to one lucky winner! Kindle for international; paperback or Kindle for continental U.S. Enter using the Rafflecopter form below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

New and On Sale from Anne Elisabeth Stengl


http://www.amazon.com/Goddess-Tithe-Tales-Goldstone-Wood-ebook/dp/B00GM9A43Q/ref=sr_1_1_twi_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1415558959&sr=8-1&keywords=Goddess+Tithe

Have you visited Goldstone Wood in Anne Elisabeth Stengl's fantasy series? 

If not, you're missing out on some epic, thought-provoking adventures!

But don't despair! :) This week you can snatch up the lone (for the time being) novella, Goddess Tithe, for only $.99 in ebook format. And the rest of the books in the series, including the brand-new Book 7, are only $4.99 each.

Awesome, no?

I confess I've fallen a bit behind on this series... (It amazes me how Anne Elisabeth can churn out such in-depth stories!) I still need to read Dragonwitch and Shadow Hand, as well as Goddess Tithe and Golden Daughter. And here Anne Elisabeth has already announced the title for Book 8! Check it out...














Doesn't she have some of the coolest book titles? Here they are in series order...

Heartless
Veiled Rose
Moonblood
Starflower
Dragonwitch 
Goddess Tithe
Shadow Hand
Golden Daughter
Poison Crown

And the covers are just as colorful and unique!














The latest one reminds me a bit of Lisa Frank. Especially with the stars and unicorn featured on the back cover...












I imagine Golden Daughter is much more intense than the cuteness and cuddles of Lisa Frank's artwork, but the pretty design that sparks childhood memories still makes me happy. :)

Tell me, which title and/or cover is your favorite so far? And if you've read the series, do you have a favorite among the stories? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Match Maker Blog Tour + Review


Match Maker

Match Maker Book Cover Here's a description of the book:

(Note: Summary contains spoilers if you have not yet read Book 1, The Husband Maker.) 

It’s been six months since Charlotte and Kyle broke up, and the Husband Maker strikes again. Kyle is officially engaged, while Charlotte is still nursing a broken heart.

In an effort to get Charlotte out of her rut, she and her best friend decide it’s time for some good old-fashioned matchmaking. While Aleena arranges for Charlotte to meet up with a handsome Scottish tourist, Charlotte gets her two best friends together. But when sparks start to fly between Aleena and Angus, Charlotte is left feeling more alone than ever—at least until the charming Scotsman becomes more than just a safe, rebound guy and teaches her that maybe, just maybe, she can dare to open her heart again.

My Rating

Spring

My Review

I really enjoyed the opportunity to get reacquainted with Charlotte in this adventurous sequel to The Husband Maker. Charlotte's relationship woes are quite relatable, and it was easy to slip right back into her world of great friends and big uncertainties.

I adored the setting descriptions in this installment. The Alcatraz outing, the road trip to Carmel, and especially the welcoming glimpse of Scotland...all were delightful, with charming characters to make the fictional trips that much more memorable. (Might I also add that the mentions of the Trees of Mystery as part of Charlotte's work made me happy?)

The way things came together right before the end left me with a bittersweet joy, and I started to expect that things would wrap up nicely with a sequel that surpassed its predecessor. And then...well, let's just say the very end emphasized a bit too much of the bitter and not enough the sweet to leave me completely satisfied. It paves the way for a third book, which shouldn't be that surprising, but let me tell you, there's one character that has me utterly frustrated! I really don't understand the reasoning behind their claims, and I'm not a fan of how their character changed in this book. It makes me wonder how the third book's going to play out...

Even with all that, I do believe that The Match Maker as a whole is even better than Book 1, and both are great reads. I'm a bit skeptical about Book 3, but Karey White has impressed me with this series so far, and I'm wishing Charlotte a very happy conclusion to her story.

*With thanks to I Am A Reader Blog Tours and the author for providing me with an e-copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.*

Get your copy of The Match Maker for just $3.99!

add to goodreads

Have you read the first book in the series?
The Husband Maker by Karey White

Husband Maker Cover

Grab your copy from
  
You can read my review of Book 1 HERE.

Coming Spring 2015
The conclusion to The Husband Maker Series
The Wife Maker by Karey White

Wife Maker 2

About the Author (Karey White)

Karey WhiteKarey White grew up in Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and Missouri. She attended Ricks College and Brigham Young University. Her first novel, Gifted, was a Whitney Award Finalist. She loves to travel, read, bake treats, and spend time with family and friends. She and her husband are the parents of four great children. She teaches summer creative writing courses to young people and is currently working on her next book.

Website * Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads

Blog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash ~  Ends 11/30/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the publisher. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.  
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 6, 2014

My Review of The Bound Heart

Here's a description of the book from the author's website:

One accidental kiss. That was all it took to throw Meredyth Summercourt's world upside-down. Determined to marry the ever-elusive Vance Everstone, she simply doesn't have the time or the desire to fall for her friend Lawry Hampton. However, with Vance out of the country and Lawry constantly at her side, Meredyth can’t help but wonder if what’s holding her to Vance is nothing more than a desire to redeem herself from their unfortunate past.

When Vance comes home to stake his claim on Meredyth, will she be strong enough to break free from the tangled web she’s convinced she deserves? Or will she find the strength to accept that God’s plan for her life could include redemption... and quite possibly the love of her best-friend?

My Rating

Spring

My Review

The Bound Heart is a worthy sequel to The Hesitant Heiress, with plenty of its own intrigue, another intense climax, and a tender love that takes its own sweet time in being realized and accepted (alas!).

Having read the first book, this second story wasn't quite as difficult to grasp given the familiarity of many of the characters. The plot does build up a little slowly, though, with just a bit of action but a good deal of drama going on indoors and within Meredyth's heart and mind.

I would have loved to see some more of the strength and generosity Meredyth's character displayed in the first book. There are certainly echoes of it in this, her own story, but the first-person POV perhaps dulls it a bit, since the reader is listening in on her own guilt and doubts without getting a view from the outside. My goodness, though, but Meredyth is stubborn! And carrying an awfully heavy burden in a heart much in need of supreme patience and relentless grace...

The story includes some twists and turns that really take off toward the end, with drama that's quite engaging to read, albeit painful at times. However, the revelations and redemption and romance do lead up to an ultimately sweet and satisfying conclusion, making The Bound Heart a great second installment in this historical romantic suspense trilogy.

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

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21490844-the-bound-heart?from_search=true

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Anon, Sir, Anon Review + Giveaway

Here's a description of the book:

The 12:55 out of Darlington brought more than Orville Farnham's niece; murder was passenger.

In coming to Whistlecreig, Genevieve Langley expected to find an ailing uncle in need of gentle care. In reality, her charge is a cantankerous Shakespearean actor with a penchant for fencing and an affinity for placing impossible bets.

When a body shows up in a field near Whistlecreig Manor and Vivi is the only one to recognize the victim, she is unceremoniously baptized into the art of crime-solving: a field in which first impressions are seldom lasting and personal interest knocks at the front door.

Set against the russet backdrop of a Northamptonshire fog, Anon, Sir, Anon cuts a cozy path to a chilling crime.

My Rating

Spring

My Review

Rachel Heffington is back with another unique take on historical fiction! This time, the story is heavier on the mystery, lighter on the romance, and all shades of interesting with the colorful characters.

As before, I'm impressed with Heffington's command of the English language and the way she strings words together to really set the mood. Occasionally the narrative does come across as a bit pretentious, but the story is soaked in all things British, and that's just not necessarily my cup of tea. ;) I did enjoy taking walks and bicycle rides through the countryside with Vivi and Farnham and witnessing the dynamic duo take some unconventional paths in both their crime-solving methods and their conversations.

To be honest, I'm not quite sure how I feel about our unusual hero and heroine. Uncle and niece are both quite clever (and they know it), but they're not without their soft spots and weaknesses. Theirs is a very unique relationship, and there's a bit of Holmes and Watson in their personalities and the ways they balance each other out.

As for the other characters, well, I quite liked Breen (Farnham's charismatic and rather sweet friend). And the murderer... Nope. My lips are sealed. Although I am tempted to throw in spoilers simply because I'd like to express my thoughts on where the story ended up! Alas.

For those Anglophiles who delight in quirky, surprising characters and mysteries that ramble through foggy countrysides and flame-lit manors, Anon, Sir, Anon is a charming read.

*With thanks to the author for providing me with an e-copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.*

Purchase the book today in paperback or Kindle ebook format.

About the Author

Rachel Heffington is a novelist, a nanny, and a people-lover living in rural Virginia with her family and black cat, Cricket. Her first novel, Fly Away Home, was independently published in February of 2014, while her novella, The Windy Side of Care, was published by Rooglewood Press in the Five Glass Slippers anthology in June of 2014. Visit Rachel online at www.inkpenauthoress.blogspot.com.

Giveaway!

Rachel is generously offering a "Cozy Quagmire" prize package. Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter to win a complete party in a box!

The Cozy Quagmire Party Pack includes everything you’ll need to have an evening worthy of guests such as Vivi, Farnham, and Dr. Breen. Prize includes P.G. Tips (Rachel's favorite British black tea), a $5 Panera Bread gift-card for toasting-bread, a Yankee candle, matchbook, and a paperback copy of Anon, Sir, Anon.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Litfuse Publicity Tour: Where Treetops Glisten

Here's a description of the book:

The crunch of newly fallen snow, the weight of wartime

Siblings forging new paths and finding love in three stories, filled with the wonder of Christmas

Turn back the clock to a different time, listen to Bing Crosby sing of sleigh bells in the snow, as the realities of America’s involvement in the Second World War change the lives of the Turner family in Lafayette, Indiana.

In Cara Putman’s White Christmas, Abigail Turner is holding down the Home Front as a college student and a part-time employee at a one-of-a-kind candy shop. Loss of a beau to the war has Abigail skittish about romantic entanglements—until a hard-working young man with a serious problem needs her help.

Abigail’s brother Pete is a fighter pilot hero returned from the European Theater in Sarah Sundin’s I’ll Be Home for Christmas, trying to recapture the hope and peace his time at war has eroded. But when he encounters a precocious little girl in need of Pete’s friendship, can he convince her widowed mother that he’s no longer the bully she once knew?

In Tricia Goyer’s Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, Meredith Turner, “Merry” to those who know her best, is using her skills as a combat nurse on the frontline in the Netherlands. Halfway around the world from home, Merry never expects to face her deepest betrayal head on, but that’s precisely what God has in mind to redeem her broken heart.

The Turner family believes in God’s providence during such a tumultuous time. Can they absorb the miracle of Christ’s birth and His plan for a future?

My Rating

Spring

My Review

Where Treetops Glisten is a really sweet and well-integrated collection of stories about one family's experiences throughout WWII. The way the collection is structured is really clever, and the novellas definitely put me in the Christmas spirit. Now that November is here, I'm feeling ready for some more Christmas music, movies, and books!

The collection begins on a gentle note. White Christmas is more of a quiet story about coming together to solve a mystery and find hope during the holidays. The romance didn't completely sweep me off my feet, but I appreciated the tenderness of it, and I especially enjoyed the details about Abigail's workplace (Glatz Candies) and the fact that Jackson works at a puzzle factory. How fun is that?

The second story, I'll Be Home for Christmas, was my favorite of the three. I love Sarah Sundin's writing - the way she so poignantly depicts themes and sketches details about the era and the characters' personalities. She even does a magnificent job of portraying the secondary characters! But the romance between Pete and Grace especially shines with sweet moments and second chances. Not to mention Pete's interactions with Linnie (Grace's daughter). Cuteness all around! And the message of the story really resonates, especially in a season where we tend to lean on others the most.

As for Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, I liked the change of pace. The hints of suspense kept the story moving along, despite a good dose of introspection. It's a story about making a difference and having the courage to do what's right...even when that means accepting something good you'd never thought you'd be able to have.

All in all, the war-time setting of these novellas really brings out the hope of Christmas. The family connections are wonderful, and even though the stories don't bring a lot of unexpected plot twists or engaging action, they're still sweet and enjoyable reads for the holidays. And the additions of the prologue and epilogue tie the collection together in a satisfying way.

*With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for my honest opinion, to be shared during the Litfuse Publicity blog tour.*

About the Authors

Tricia Goyer is a prolific author of nearly forty books, including Chasing Mona Lisa, and a speaker and blogger. Cara Putman is the author of twenty books including Shadowed by Grace. She is the winner of the 2008 Carol Award for historical fiction. Sarah Sundin is the critically-acclaimed author of the Wings of the Nightingale series, the Wings of Glory series, and the forthcoming Waves of Freedom novels.

To Buy the Book: click HERE

Blog Tour: Check out the reviews from other blog tour participants HERE.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

The Thing with Feathers


https://www.facebook.com/signedsealeddeliveredtv

To Whom It May Concern,

Sometimes a job in marketing prompts a person to get familiar with current events, even if she generally prefers to avoid news that only serves to strike fear and breed feelings of depression and helplessness. But perhaps it's a matter of balance.

It's good to be aware of what's going on in the world. To not forget that others are suffering, in need of aid and our prayers.

And yet, we need to be reminded that even in the worst of situations, God does not abandon us. Miracles do happen in real life, but occasionally fiction steps in to bring that truth to mind. To help focus our attention on that "thing with feathers": hope.

So this letter is one of gratitude to the Hallmark Channel show, Signed, Sealed, Delivered (and to my friend Rissi for making me want to give it a try):

Thank you for Episode 1 (Time to Start Livin'), which reminded me of a grandma's love and how precious those memories with my grandparents are.

Thank you for Episode 2 (To Whom It May Concern), which reminded me that even in the horror of war, hope can bloom and heroes can be born.

Thank you for Episode 3 (Soulmates), which reminded me that a love delayed is not always a love departed - and words of love don't need to be romantic in nature in order to touch our hearts.

Thank you for Episode 4 (The Masterpiece), which reminded me that even though parents and their children can have very different dreams for their lives, a bit of understanding can go a long way.

Thank you for Episode 5 (The Edge of Forever), which reminded me that a lack of communication can bring about long-term damage, but honesty and forgiveness can ease years of heartache.

And thank you for the episodes I have yet to watch. I look forward to each happy, teary reminder of "the thing with feathers."

Sincerely Yours,
Amber

Saturday, November 1, 2014

New Release Announcement: Corral Nocturne

I'm happy to be a part of the blog announcement for a fellow indie author's brand-new release. :) I haven't yet read any of Elisabeth's stories, but the cover of her latest is simply enchanting, and her impressive array of stories looks intriguing. Here's some more info about Corral Nocturne, which is now available!


Life on her brother’s ranch is lonely for Ellie Strickland. Ed’s ungracious manners and tight-fisted habits keep visitors away and his mother and sister close to home. But when Cole Newcomb, son of the wealthiest rancher in the county, meets Ellie by chance, he is struck by an unexpected impulse to rescue her from her solitude—and Ellie’s lonely summer is transformed.

When Cole asks her to go with him to the Fourth of July dance, Ellie is determined that nothing, from an old dress to Ed’s sour temper, will stand in her way. By the time the Fourth of July fireworks go off at midnight, will they herald only more heartache, or maybe—just maybe—a dream come true?

Novella, approximately 21,000 words. 
Purchase on: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Smashwords
Add to Goodreads

Doesn't it sound so sweet? And again, I adore the cover. Stars on a purple background...the silhouetted fence that reminds me of a scene in one of my favorite museums...and the whimsical font... Yep, it's a winner!

Here's more info about the author:


Elisabeth Grace Foley is a historical fiction author, avid reader and lifelong history buff. Her first published story, "Disturbing the Peace," was an honorable mention in the first annual Rope and Wire Western short story competition, and is now collected with six others in her debut short story collection, The Ranch Next Door and Other Stories. Her other works include a series of short historical mysteries, the Mrs. Meade Mysteries; and short fiction set during the American Civil War and the Great Depression. A homeschool graduate, she chose not to attend college in order to pursue self-education and her writing career.

Connect with Elisabeth on her blog, Goodreads, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Giveaway!

Elisabeth is generously offering a Prairie Cinderella Prize Package to one lucky winner! You can enter using the Rafflecopter form below. And here's the list of prizes:
  • Corral Nocturne ebook 
  • mp3 of “After the Ball” 
  • Pink cameo ring (in the style of the cameo brooch in the story) 
  • Custom-made Corral Nocturne bookmark
a Rafflecopter giveaway