Saturday, December 29, 2018

A Good Old-Fashioned Roller-Coaster Read | Review of Mark of Distinction

About the Book (from Tyndale)

London is said to be the glittering jewel of society, a world unto itself—but to Julia Elliston it is a city of shadows. Her life is swiftly dissolving into scandal. And in Victorian society, even a whisper of scandal—substantiated or not—can be the death of a young woman’s reputation.

Now under the watchful eye of Lord Roy Pierson, one of the most influential men in England, Julia begrudgingly accepts his protection. But Chance Macy’s power is far-reaching as well, and he is eager to assert his claim over her.

Thrust into society as the Emerald Heiress, Julia is the toast of London, a celebrated curiosity. But in reality she’s trapped between the clutches of two powerful men. Aided only by a gentleman whose intentions she prays she can trust, Julia must finally take control of her own fate—but outwitting one’s foe rarely goes according to plan.

Available Now!

My Rating


My Review

Man, this series is a good old-fashioned roller coaster if ever there was one! This second book in the Price of Privilege trilogy continues Julia's story on the enchanting but frightful stage of Victorian-era London, with its parties and balls, desperation and lonely halls.

Everything is told through Julia's perspective, meaning we readers encounter the charming deceptions, timid hopes, and powerful emotions she experiences right alongside her. She once again faces a great amount of upheaval, and it's satisfying and inspiring to see her go to battle with her uncertainty in order to truly understand who she is and what she believes. By the last surprising scenes, she still has a long way to go...but she's taken important steps. And thank goodness there's still another book!

Danger and dark secrets continue to build in this series, layer upon layer. Mr. Macy lurks in the shadows, ready to appear and wreak havoc at any unexpected moment. Lord Isaac Dalry and his sweet family offer moments of brightness...but happily-ever-after is far from simple for a girl like Julia, who seems to have stumbled upon a fortune but prefers to cling to her treasure chest of childhood memories.

Mark of Distinction is a middle book, and it reads that way. One important character takes backstage for most of this story, so unless you're familiar with book 1, it might be hard to fathom (or care) why Julia feels so strongly about him. And knowing the whole story ultimately intensifies the dangers and revelations. So you'll definitely want to read Born of Persuasion first...and then you'll most definitely want to dive into Price of Privilege (book 3)!

*With thanks to Tyndale House Publishers for providing me with a complimentary ARC of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.*

Friday, December 28, 2018

Christmas Cake Kisses | Spotlight + Giveaway

I hope you all had a delightful Christmas with family and friends! If you're not quite ready to say goodbye to the holiday cheer, my friend Lena Goldfinch's new short story might be just the recipe for a little post-Christmas treat. :) I had the pleasure and privilege of reading the story and providing feedback before publication, and it's a really cute winter romance featuring newlyweds! If you liked Sleigh Bells & Mistletoe, you're sure to enjoy Christmas Cake Kisses.

(And hey, if you haven't read Sleigh Bells & Mistletoe yet, it's also only $.99 for Kindle!)

About the Book 

Arabella Ashbury, the new Countess of Kentwick, isn't satisfied with a mere marriage of convenience. Her handsome groom, his lordship Malcolm Ashbury, may be known for his glowers and growls, but she sees through to his softer side. She's in love and longs for his affection. 

It's nearly Christmas, and Arabella has an outrageous plan to win over her husband by baking him his favorite Christmas cake—a nearly impossible confection of meringue, genoise, and hazelnut cream. To do this, she faces her first challenge: enlisting the help of the earl's suspicious household staff, who view her as a wealthy, social-climbing commoner who cares only for Malcolm's title. 

Christmas Cake Kisses is a short-but-sweet Victorian holiday romance. The story was inspired in part by the author's love of Beauty and the Beast-themed romance, Victorian and Regency Christmas anthologies, and her near obsession with The Great British Baking Show

A quick romantic read of 6,200 words (approximately 40 print-formatted pages).

Available now!

About the Author

LENA GOLDFINCH is the Amazon-bestselling author of sweet historical western romance, inspirational romance, and books for teens. She's always been a sucker for a good old-fashioned romance, whether it's a novel or short story, young adult or adult, fantasy or realistic, contemporary or historical. Lena has been a finalist in several national writing contests, including the RWA Golden Heart and ACFW Genesis contests.


Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter for a chance to win a free Kindle copy of Christmas Cake Kisses! This giveaway is open internationally (age 18 and older), but void where prohibited, and it ends December 30, 2018.

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Friday, December 21, 2018

A Compelling, Heartbreaking, Powerful Read | Review of Hidden Among the Stars

About the Book (from Tyndale House)

From the award-winning author of Catching the Wind, which Publishers Weekly called “unforgettable” and a “must-read,” comes another gripping time-slip novel about hidden treasure, a castle, and ordinary people who resisted evil in their own extraordinary way.

The year is 1938, and as Hitler’s troops sweep into Vienna, Austrian Max Dornbach promises to help his Jewish friends hide their most valuable possessions from the Nazis, smuggling them to his family’s summer estate near the picturesque village of Hallstatt. He enlists the help of Annika Knopf, his childhood friend and the caretaker’s daughter, who is eager to help the man she’s loved her entire life. But when Max also brings Luzia Weiss, a young Jewish woman, to hide at the castle, it complicates Annika’s feelings and puts their entire plan—even their very lives—in jeopardy. Especially when the Nazis come to scour the estate and find both Luzia and the treasure gone.

Eighty years later, Callie Randall is mostly content with her quiet life, running a bookstore with her sister and reaching out into the world through her blog. Then she finds a cryptic list in an old edition of Bambi that connects her to Annika’s story . . . and maybe to the long-buried story of a dear friend. As she digs into the past, Callie must risk venturing outside the safe world she’s built for a chance at answers, adventure, and maybe even new love.

Available Now!

My Rating


My Review

I've read a few of Melanie Dobson's books, and this is my favorite so far! In the contemporary story line, the initial setting of a children's bookstore is whimsical and safe, and the latter setting is haunting and romantic. I enjoyed following Callie's progress as she seeks out answers with tenacity and subtle hope. As she faces new challenges, she is skittish and yet strong in the love of others.

The historical story line is so compelling and heartbreaking. I will say that, while the back cover description definitely piques interest, I do wish it didn't give quite so much away. I think if it held back a bit more, there'd be more room for wondering and uncertainty. Even still, while some twists might be a bit easy to guess—at least in general—I found myself surprised and touched by the details.

Each character in the pre-World War II timeline has their own depth, hurts, and difficult choices to make. The back cover description made me worried about a painful love triangle, but the complexities of the story and its characters put such worries to rest. Yes, this story is painful, but not petty. It's poignant in the best of ways. Annika and Luzia both won me over, and I found one scene toward the end to be incredibly powerful, aching, and beautiful in its portrayal of faith.

Hidden Among the Stars is illuminated with hope, as gentle and sparkling as starlight in incredibly dark circumstances. With engaging descriptions, relatable characters, and a grandly pieced plot, this is a story to love.

*With thanks to the author and Tyndale House Publishers for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.*

Also by Melanie Dobson...
Chateau of Secrets {my review}
Shadows of Ladenbrooke Manor {my review}

Thursday, December 20, 2018

A Heartfelt Tale Full of Realistic Emotion | Review of The Innkeeper's Wife

About the Book (from Dragonpen Press)

On the edge of a secluded forest, the Timeless Bed and Breakfast greets its guests with promises of home-cooked meals, warm fires, and great service. Caleb and Ginny put everything they have into their little inn, keeping their own pains hidden from their guests. But when a poor young couple gets stranded at their inn on Christmas Eve in the middle of a blizzard, Ginny knows they can’t turn them away, even though they are completely booked for the holiday. However, letting them stay will push her strength to the limits and churn the deep wells of sadness inside her.

This heart-warming but wrenching novelette explores the events of the Nativity story, while simultaneously delving deep into the painful world of infertility.

Available Now!

My Rating


My Review

This story is not a light and cheery Christmas rom-com, but rather a heartfelt tale full of realistic emotion mixed with an unfading tinge of hope.

The heroine, Ginny, is rather difficult to befriend. We see her in one of her most painful moments, upset with her responses to the situation but ultimately willing to rise to the occasion, especially with the tender support of her husband. I would have loved to see just a bit more of her sweeter side, which makes itself known now and then. Still, her hurts and heartaches stir up empathy, and it's easy to understand her struggles with jealousy and sorrow.

The story mostly takes place on a fierce winter night. Quick glimpses of the inn make it seem like a lovely vacation destination, but it's in a tucked-away room in the garage where the external and internal battles—the heart of the story—are fought. The descriptions feel authentic, and the characters have a way of winning over the reader in their flaws, fears, and hope for the future. And Caleb, Ginny's husband, is such a sweetheart!

The Innkeeper's Wife is a very focused story about infertility and birth, years of someone's waiting meeting the arrival of new life. It's heavy, but still infused with light. If you're looking for a short read to make you think, encourage your compassion, inspire selfless acts of emotional bravery, and remind you of hope in the hard times, this one has a lot to offer during the holidays and beyond.

*With thanks to the author for providing me with a complimentary e-copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.*

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Meet the Mayberry Family | A Series of Endearing Contemporary Novellas

Since last December, I've mentioned a couple of Tracy Joy Jones's novellas here on the blog. They really are delightful! And I love that she released them to her newsletter subscribers throughout the past year in celebration of the different holidays and seasons. Over the last few days, I've binged on a few in the series—so fun! While these stories are fresh in my mind, I thought I would share some quick thoughts and also let you know how you can find two of them today. :)

You can learn more about this series on Tracy's website.

How Gretchen Stole Christmas (Novella #1)

Fun and full of heart! How Gretchen Stole Christmas starts out with a young woman eager to surprise her family for Christmas...but quickly takes a surprising turn that brings an old flame into the picture. I really enjoyed reading about Gretchen's big family and seeing how she reacts to a crazy situation. The ending is perfect for a Christmas romance, and I love the way the heroine's eyes are opened.

(This review was originally posted last December.)  

Unlucky in Love & Lyrics (Novella #2)

It's been a little while since I read this one, so my thoughts aren't as fresh. But I do think this might be my favorite in the series... It had an impact on me when I read it! The premise, title, and cover are all clever and compelling, and I remember loving the story, its conclusion, and its heart. Seriously, don't miss your chance to get a copy, especially with St. Patrick's Day not so far around the corner once again. :) 

When Fireworks Fly (Novella #3)

I confess this one was probably my least favorite of the series...but don't think that means it's not a great addition! It's a little short, and you really should read How Gretchen Stole Christmas first in order for the characters' continuing journey to mean more to you. But that journey really is sweet, and even more so with plans bursting apart and joy arriving in unexpected moments. 

Must Love Pumpkins (Novella #4)

It's hard to say whether this one or the next one is  my second favorite in the series. I do so love autumn, and I could totally relate to Kayla's infatuation with the farm where she's working. I greatly enjoyed the descriptions of all the different aspects of this farm's fall business: the corn maze, the treats for sale, and pumpkins everywhere! It reminded me a bit of the pumpkin patch I used to go to with my family growing up, although the one in this novella has even more attractions, like a "haunted house" and pony rides. This is a charming little story with a few serious twists and the unfolding of a sweet friendship.

A Very Mayberry Christmas (Novella #5)

I think perhaps Unlucky in Love & Lyrics and Must Love Pumpkins could be enjoyed on their own, but this Christmas story that wraps up the year is one made most enjoyable through knowing the characters and their backgrounds beforehand. I loved getting so many different perspectives from the family as a beautiful wintry wedding takes place. A Very Mayberry Christmas throws some curveballs that leave the reader touched, surprised, and eager for more of the Mayberry family and their heartfelt love. 

*With thanks to the author for providing me (as a newsletter subscriber) a complimentary copy of each of these books. Opinions expressed in this post are my own.*

P.S. Don't forget that you can currently purchase novella #1 on Amazon and get novella #2 FREE when you subscribe to Tracy's newsletter! You'll definitely want to be subscribed so you can stay up to date on all her upcoming book news. :) 

Thursday, December 6, 2018

A Heartwarming Read for the Holiday Season | Review of Here to Stay

About the Book (from the author's website)

Blake Hunziker has played nomad for five years and landed in his fair share of trouble too. But now he’s finally returning to his hometown–the Lake Michigan tourist town of Whisper Shore. Counting on a not-so-warm welcome, he’s surprised at not only a positive reception but also a job offer. Determined to settle down and prove himself responsible, he agrees to the catch that comes with the job offer–coordinating the annual Christmas festival–even though he has no idea how he’ll pull it off.

Autumn Kingsley, inn owner and experienced organizer of the Christmas festival, has always dreamed of traveling the world. Now she has a job opportunity in Paris and a surprise potential investor coming to town who just might take on her family’s inn and finally leave her free to go. The only problem is that she has just two weeks to whip the inn into shape.

Their families have a long history of not getting along, but when Blake comes to Autumn for help with the festival, she actually agrees…in exchange for his help with the repairs to her inn. They may have struck a simple deal, but complications are quick to pile on when the guy who’s had enough of running away and the woman who can’t wait to leave join forces.

Available now!

My Rating


My Review

Ultimately, Here to Stay is a very heartwarming story about two characters who think they understand their needs and desires...but start to open their eyes and hearts to a future that looks much different than they expected. The setting of a cozy lakeshore town is enjoyable to visit through the pages, especially with the heroine (Autumn) running an older inn. And this is a great read for the holiday season, as the majority of the book takes place in the late fall and early winter, leading up to Christmas and the town's Christmas festival.

Possibly due to my mood or current preferences, I didn't feel 100% invested or engaged in the story. But the characters are definitely endearing, and there is a good amount of sweetly romantic scenes and cute/funny/difficult challenges for those endearing characters to face. I liked the growth of relationships and the thoughtfulness and love both Autumn and Blake show to others (and each other) on different occasions and in different ways.

Here to Stay is a lovely contemporary romance showcasing Melissa Tagg's talent in creating sweet settings and characters. While perhaps not a favorite for me and a little less exciting than the premise of her first book (Made to Last), I still enjoyed my visit as a reader-tourist to Whisper Shore.

*With thanks to Bethany House for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.*

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The Christmas Book Shoppe | Book Blitz + Review + Giveaway

It's so fun to see dear blogger friends like Miranda Atchley (A Real Writer's Life) publishing new books! Today, as we celebrate the start of the Christmas season, we also celebrate the release of The Christmas Book Shoppe. Gather round to hear more about this sweet novella (and a chance to win an e-copy)!

About the Book

Keeping her book store might take a Christmas miracle…

Trudy Gallagher is quite content with her simple life. For the past five years, she has lived and worked at The Christmas Book Shoppe, a new and used book store formerly owned and operated by her great-aunt. She loves nothing more than spending her days in the Victorian house filled with books, surrounded by her cat and loved ones. As Christmas, her favorite day of the year, approaches, she begins the season with her usual verve and excitement.

Yet when her landlord threatens to sell The Christmas Book Shoppe, she is devastated. She cannot imagine life without the book store she calls home. As she struggles to create a plan to keep the book store open, it seems as if her whole word is turned upside down and her every attempt to save the store fails.

Can she find a way to keep the store she loves?

My Review

The Christmas Book Shoppe is a light, quick, and sweet novella. Trudy's plight to save the bookshop she loves is reminiscent to that of Kathleen Kelly in the beloved movie You've Got Mail, but this little story is populated with its own endearing characters and set in a charming small town in Arkansas.

I enjoyed this glimpse into Trudy's world. It's a very gentle read, especially in the beginning. Tension arises as the bookshop's existence is threatened, but the main draw of the story is in Trudy herself and her friends and family (and her lovely cat!).

Some details don't quite seem to add up, some scenes don't really add much to the plot, and the writing feels somewhat unpolished, but all in all, The Christmas Book Shoppe is simply sweet in its Christmas cheer and hope. This is a "day in the life" sort of story about a bookshop owner with kind parents and good friends—and it includes plenty of nods to the life of a modern reader. For those who share Trudy's love of books, independent bookstores, and the Christmas season, this would make a cozy little addition to a holiday collection!

*With thanks to the author for providing me with a complimentary e-copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.*

About the Author

MIRANDA ATCHLEY has written several novels, both historical and contemporary, one of which was a finalist for an indie writing award. When she isn’t writing, Miranda loves getting lost in a good book and watching period dramas. She lives in a small town in Arkansas. Visit her blog and subscribe to her mailing list at

Connect with Miranda on social media:

Enjoy an Excerpt from 
The Christmas Book Shoppe...

As she placed the last ornament on the Christmas tree, Trudy Gallagher stood back and looked at her handiwork with a gratified smile. It was the Monday after Thanksgiving, and she had spent the majority of the day decorating The Christmas Book Shoppe for the holiday. Like every other year, she and her assistant Marge had placed the eight foot artificial Christmas tree before the front window in the foyer, and Trudy had happily wrapped it in lights and tinsel, placing book themed ornaments along the branches.

“A little early to be putting up a Christmas tree, don’t you think?” Mr. Scranton, a regular patron at the book store—and the town’s resident curmudgeon—asked when he came to donate yet another stack of used books.

“Well, Thanksgiving was last Thursday,” Trudy replied in the kindest tone she could muster. It was tradition at The Christmas Book Shoppe to decorate for the holidays the Monday after Thanksgiving. After all, they were The Christmas Book Shoppe, a store that carried a mix of new and used books and was housed in the historic district of a small town called Christmas, Arkansas—which was named for the town’s settler as opposed to the holiday, as most out of towners understandably believed. They had to embrace the spirit of Christmas, just like most other businesses in town did. Yet there was always someone who accused them of decorating too early. Trudy couldn’t help but wonder; what would Mr. Scranton say if he knew that she had decorated her apartment on November first?

Scoffing at her, Mr. Scranton turned and went on his way, his pace slow as his cane assisted him. Trudy could have sworn she’d heard him mutter “bah humbug” under his breath as he exited through the front door, his harsh tone clashing with the twinkling bell above the door. Though that could have simply been her imagination, which, given all the novels she read, was usually quite overactive. 

Trudy shrugged as she placed the two heavy plastic bags full of moldy paperbacks on the desk and began to sort through them.

Really, who could blame her for embracing the Christmas spirit as fully as she did? After enduring long humid Arkansas summers that often started as early as April and boasted weeks of temperatures in the high nineties and low hundreds, it was a relief to have cooler weather. When the heat of summer was too much to bear, she often daydreamed about the Christmas season just to distract herself from the reality of living in such a humid climate.

But it wasn’t just the cold weather she enjoyed. She loved everything about Christmas. Watching classic Christmas movies, drinking hot cocoa while reading a light and cheery Christmas novella, and listening to Christmas songs all December were some of her favorite things. And there was just something about all the pretty decorations and lights that made the whole town of Christmas, Arkansas, look like the inside of a snow globe…minus all the snow. It was simply a magical time of year.

“I’m glad you enjoy decorating the tree so much,” said Marge when Trudy made her way back to the front desk. With a deep sigh, she added, “Putting that tree up just wears me out.”

Looking up from the copy of Thoreau’s Walden she’d been inspecting, Trudy offered a smile and said, “Well, I’m happy to do it.” 

With raised eyebrows, Marge shook her head. “I can certainly tell.”

Marge was a middle aged woman who had been working at The Christmas Book Shoppe for the last few years. While she was a good employee, she didn’t share Trudy’s excitement about literature and holidays and found her boss’s enthusiasm rather tiring. It was amazing that the two got along as well as they did.

Trudy once again smiled and then took the newly arrived books and began to shelve them. It was a little curious that Mr. Scranton had donated so much as of late. Counting what he’d brought in today, he’d donated a total of ten bags full of books in two weeks. Trudy wondered how many books he had in that old, somewhat off-putting house he lived in on the edge of town.

After Mr. Scranton’s donations were situated on the shelves, Trudy took to straightening the book cases, and in the process she found herself somewhat distracted, reading the synopsis scrawled on the back covers of titles that caught her attention. She often found herself similarly distracted while working here at the shop and realized that this was one reason why her to-be-read pile was growing entirely out of control.

When she found a particularly interesting novel set in the Edwardian era, she flipped open the cover and read the first few pages. Soon her mind was thousands of miles and a hundred years away, caught up in a world of lords and ladies.

“That a good book?”

With a gasp, she slammed the book shut. Looking up, she saw her friend, Reed Thornton. A roguish smile twisted his mouth, making him look more like Downton Abbey’s Tom Branson than ever.

“You scared me to death,” she said, taking a deep breath in an attempt to steady her heart rate. “And yes, it is a good book. I think I’ll keep it for myself.”

In his hands, she saw a stack of books, all bearing familiar titles. The Great Gatsby, Wuthering Heights, Persuasion. In Trudy’s world, it was unusual for most guys to even like reading. But for a guy to pass up science fiction and thrillers for classic romance? That was just unheard of.

“Looking for a good romance, are we?” she asked as they made their way back to the front desk.

He gave her the same exasperated expression he offered each time she made a wise crack about his reading habits. “It’s required reading for my classic lit class.”

Trudy smiled skeptically. She knew Reed had in fact enrolled in a classic lit class at the university after recently going back to college in order to earn a master’s degree in literature. Yet she also knew that Reed had always been a sucker for classic literature, just like her. They’d taken literature classes in high school together and their mutual love of the classics was one reason why they’d been such good friends for most of their lives.

“You know there isn’t any shame in guys reading romance novels, right?” With a snort she added, “I mean, look at Nicholas Sparks. His novels have been giving women false hopes for years now. And Fitzgerald was a guy, and he wrote The Great Gatsby. Besides, haven’t you already read that?” 

“When we were seniors in high school,” he said with a half frown. “But that was a long time ago. I’ve read too many books since then to remember all I need to know about it for this class.”

“Well, it is a pretty good one to revisit,” she said as she rounded the corner of the front desk.

As she scanned the barcode on Persuasion, she cocked an eyebrow at Reed.

He sighed as he dug his wallet out of his back pocket. “It’s the only Austen I haven’t read yet.”

She chuckled as she placed the stack of books in a bag bearing the store’s emblem.

“Do you give all your customers this hard of a time?” he asked as he accepted the bag.

She simply laughed in reply.

“You know, I could just buy my books on Amazon. I’d get a lot less cheek if I did.”

“Yeah, but you’d pay a lot more. Plus, you wouldn’t get this sparkling customer service that brings in customers from miles around.”

Chuckling, he rolled his eyes, took his bag and left.


One winner will receive a Kindle download of The Christmas Book Shoppe. The giveaway begins December 4 and ends December 7. Open internationally to anyone who can receive a Kindle download via email. Must be 18 or older to participate.

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Monday, December 3, 2018

Brimming with Emotion, Adversity, and Hope | Review of Burning Sky

About the Book (from Waterbrook Multnomah)

A Christy award-winning novel about a woman caught between two worlds, and the lengths she goes to find where she belongs

Abducted by Mohawk Indians at fourteen and renamed Burning Sky, Willa Obenchain is driven to return to her family’s New York frontier homestead after many years building a life with the People. At the boundary of her father’s property, Willa discovers a wounded Scotsman lying in her path. Feeling obliged to nurse his injuries, the two quickly find much has changed during her twelve-year absence: her childhood home is in disrepair, her missing parents are rumored to be Tories, and the young Richard Waring she once admired is now grown into a man twisted by the horrors of war and claiming ownership of the Obenchain land.

When her Mohawk brother arrives and questions her place in the white world, the cultural divide blurs Willa’s vision. Can she follow Tames-His-Horse back to the People now that she is no longer Burning Sky? And what about Neil MacGregor, the kind and loyal botanist who does not fit into in her plan for a solitary life, yet is now helping her revive her farm? In the aftermath of the Revolutionary War, strong feelings against “savages” abound in the nearby village of Shiloh, leaving Willa’s safety unsure.

As tensions rise, challenging her shielded heart, the woman called Burning Sky must find a new courage—the courage to again risk embracing the blessings the Almighty wants to bestow. Is she brave enough to love again?

My Rating


My Review

Burning Sky brims with emotion, adversity, and hope. I'm ashamed to say I've had my copy since 2013, and it honestly should not have taken me five years to finally sit down and read it! Based on reading (and loving) Lori Benton's second book, The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn, I knew she could write an engaging story with beautiful characters. And once I got to know Burning Sky, Neil MacGregor, Joseph Tames-His-Horse, and others, Lori's debut didn't disappoint.

I will say it was a heavier, somewhat slower, read for me, as the main character (Willa or Burning Sky) has a long, painful, question-filled journey to take in the months covered through the pages of this historically rich novel. But it's a very meaningful journey, and I can absolutely see why this book won multiple Christy awards.

One of my favorite things about this book is the ending. Based on first impressions, The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn might be my favorite of the two (although I might have to reread it to be sure!), but the one thing that disappointed me a bit with that book was what stood out to me as I finished Burning Sky. I would have loved a bit more from Tamsen's conclusion, but the end of Burning Sky was incredibly satisfying, moving, and uplifting.

This is a romance, yes, and I ultimately loved the direction it took. But this story also deals with other kinds of love and matters of faith and identity. With many layers and challenges, Burning Sky is the kind of read that takes time but offers much to take with you when the journey is done.

*With thanks to the author and Waterbrook Multnomah for providing me with a complimentary ARC of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.*

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Winner and Tour Conclusion | Yes, Carol...It's Christmas! Blog Tour

Good morning and happy December! Our festive Christmas blog tour has reached its end—but we still get to announce the giveaway winner, share some tour highlights, offer some gift ideas, and wish you a very merry Christmas! Let's get started...

Winner Time

Congratulations to the winner of the "party in a box" giveaway...

Cheryl H.!

She won a signed copy of Yes, Carol...It's Christmas!, two Betty Crocker sugar cookie mixes, two cookie cutters, a four-pack of sprinkles, a strand of Christmas lights, and two glass ornaments. Woohoo! Thank you to everyone who entered and spread the word. :)

Tour Highlights

This tour was filled with fun, creative, and touching posts from Cindy and our team of bloggers. If you missed any of them, it's not too late to check them out! Here are some handy links...

Cindy's Christmas Party Tips
Visiting Christmas Past, Present, and Future with...
'Twas the Night Before Christmas
  • "I liked Yes, Carol…It's Christmas! even more than A Christmas Carol if that is even possible, and it will now become a Christmas season re-read in the years to come." | Carissa's review
  • "If you are looking for a fun and fast Christmas read, this one will surely put you in the Christmas spirit!" | Julie's review
  • "I highly recommend adding this novella to your Christmas reading list this year." | Heather's review (+ author interview and fudge recipe!)
  • "Full of sass and heartwarming moments, this novella moves at a swift pace." | Miranda's review
  • "A very short, breezy read to help you get into—or sustain—the Christmas spirit." | Jes's review

Christmas Gift Ideas

With this blog tour, we've been celebrating Cindy Vincent's novella, Yes, Carol...It's Christmas! (which would make a fun holiday gift for yourself or a loved one!). But Cindy is also the author of many other books...

Perfect for Kids (and Cat-Lovers)

The Buckley & Bogey Cat Detective Capers
#1 The Case of the Cat Show Princess
#2 The Case of the Crafty Christmas Crooks
#3 The Case of the Jewel Covered Cat Statues
#4 The Case of the Clever Secret Code

To learn  more about Buckley and Bogey, visit

Perfect for Historical Mystery Fans

The Tracy Truworth, Apprentice P.I., 1940s Homefront Mysteries
#1 Bad Day for a Bombshell
#2 Swell Time for a Swing Dance

Perfect for Friends and Family

Daily Devotional
Cats Are Part of His Kingdom, Too

Find Cindy's books on Amazon, and learn more about Cindy and her work at

Merry Christmas!

Cindy and I want to offer our sincere gratitude to all the bloggers who participated in the Yes, Carol...It's Christmas! blog tour, as well as all those who joined the fun by leaving comments and entering the giveaway! It was wonderful to kick off the Christmas season with you all. :) Wishing each of you a joyous Christmas!