Monday, December 2, 2019

November Days

The month that seems to start a new season is now past. There where multiple musical nights this month as my man played guitar. We also waited anxiously for some news and were so thankful when it turned out to be good news! I went to an Oils of the Bible class which was fun and I got to smell all the essential oils. We celebrated some birthdays in our family as November seems to be the month of many birthdays. There were some beautiful days of snow that I loved watching out the window. The first snowfalls of the year are always special. Thanksgiving we hosted in our home this year and it was a success. Family came for the day and we managed to eat way too much and send everyone home with leftovers. Our turkey turned out especially good in my opinion! 
I sit here on a very chilly day with the wind howling in anticipation of decorating for Christmas. I wait until after Thanksgiving to delve into the Christmas decor and traditions. This next month will fly by and I am hopeful I can enjoy the moments that make this month special. 
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and I wish you a happy month of December!

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Heart of a Royal Review with Celebrate Lit Tours

Heart of a Royal FB Banner


About the Book

Book: Heart Of A Royal
Author: Hannah Currie
Genre:  Young Adult/Royalty
Heart of a Royal cover 
Brought to the palace as a newborn, the royal life bestowed upon Mackenna Sparrow was never meant to last forever. With Princess Alina engaged to be married, Mackenna’s presence as companion is no longer required and, like it or not, she must return to the birthright which should have been hers – that of a commoner. But not everyone at the palace wants her gone. When the truths she’s based her life on start crumbling as fast as her future, will she find the courage to trust, both herself and the prince she’s fallen in love with?

Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Hannah currie 
Aussie author, Hannah Currie, loves God, family, people (in small numbers, let’s not go crazy here!) and writing. She and her husband live with their three adorable kids in sunny Queensland, where it really is beautiful one day and perfect the next. Except, maybe, during heatwaves. They’re not so fun. She loves to connect with readers at www.hannahcurrie.com.

More from Hannah

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by royalty. Real ones like Queen Elizabeth II, who is such an incredible woman and a total hero of mine (not to mention, as a proud Australian and member of the Commonwealth, my monarch) but also the not-so-real ones. Those found in fairytales. Romances. Narnia.
I’m one of those people who blocks out an entire day to watch a royal wedding, sighs like a hopeless romantic through cheesy princess movies, reads just about any novel I find with a crown on the front and loves a full-spread photo souvenir magazine. I may have even written a short story starring a princess for an English assignment at school. More than once. [Side note, if you’re going to write a story about a princess who is totally adorable but can’t spell, don’t use a misspelled word as the title. It takes a lot of explaining to make sure the teacher knows you did it on purpose and doesn’t mark you down for it… sorry Ninth Grade English teacher!].
The glamor draws me in, the beautiful clothes, the history and romance of it all, but it’s the expectations they have on them which hold me there. Every title comes with a million expectations, whether or not they’re realistic. We expect royals, both real and fictional, to behave in a certain way. To be honourable (assuming they’re the good guys). To care for their people and put them first. To always be there. Yes, even to be beautiful.
But what happens when they’re not? When they’re shy? Fight anxiety? Hate the spotlight? Are blemished in some way? What happens when what’s best for the people isn’t what’s best for them? Or when they make a mistake? Something which, for anyone else, would be easily fixed or glossed over but for a royal, gets written into the history books forever. Purely because of their title.
Kenna, the main character in Heart of a Royal, never meant to be a princess. She wasn’t born into royalty, neither did she choose it. And yet, due to circumstances far beyond her control, there she is. Living in a palace. Part of that life.
Very few of us are royalty but I think we all know how heavy expectations can be and the pain of being thrust into situations beyond our control. And yet, even in those moments and seasons, just like Kenna, we have choices. They might seem small, maybe even insignificant in the grand scheme of things, but they’re there. Who we put our trust in. What we do with the circumstances we’ve been given. Where we go from there.
Heart of a Royal is as much my story as it is Kenna’s. No, I’m not a princess (thankfully!) but I have struggled through finding hope and purpose when life flies out of control and the expectations prove too much. And here’s what I’ve found – God is good. There is hope and God is good. I hope, through Kenna’s story, you are reminded of that too.

Blog Stops

CarpeDiem, November 28
Hebrews 12 Endurance, November 28
Hallie Reads, November 28
Emily Yager, November 29
Back Porch Reads, November 30
Mia Reads Blog, December 1
Bigreadersite , December 1
Kathleen Denly, December 2
Genesis 5020, December 2
She Lives To Read, December 2
Texas Book-aholic, December 2
Livin’ Lit, December 3
The Becca Files, December 4
Becka Jiménez , December 4
HookMeInABook, December 4
janicesbookreviews, December 4
Avid Reader Nurse, December 6
A Reader’s Brain, December 6
Moments, December 7
Remembrancy, December 8
Pause for Tales , December 8
All-of-a-kind Mom, December 10
Batya’s Bits, December 11

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour Hannah is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.



My Thoughts

Typically this is not a book I would pick up and read. But since this is a new author and series I thought I would try something out of my normal. Little did I know how much I would LOVE this book! The characters were well written and developed, even the secondary ones. I enjoyed the setting of a royal household and also Peverell. There is a lot more depth to the story than I was expecting and honestly the way it was written just made this a fun book. The ending has a surprising twist and while some parts are predictable it still had me staying up late turning pages. I am ready to read the rest of the series now so I hope Hannah keeps writing her stories! This book I think might land in the top ten books of the year pile. I am so thankful to discover a new author and I highly recommend if you are needing a fun new adventure! 

Five stars. 

"I received this book from the publisher for free. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."
















 



 

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

My Thoughts on A Pursuit of Home


43838083

 About the Book


When she learns the family she thought dead might be alive and in danger, Jess Beuchene knows her secrets can only stay buried for so long. Desperation brings her to Derek Thornbury, an expert in history and artifacts, to help her decipher the clues in an old family diary. Will their search to uncover the truth of the past lead to a future together? (Goodreads)



My Thoughts

This third Haven Manor story takes you into the life of Jess. While you don't have to read these books in order, it would make a lot more sense if you did! Jess has been in the past books and everyone (including me) has been wanting her story. I will be honest in saying that this story line went somewhere I did not see coming. Not in a bad way just more mysterious. I enjoyed the art threadline throughout the book and Derek's character. There is some great humor between multiple characters and a bit of an adventure that takes you into some fun settings. I think I ended up loving Derek more so than Jess by the end of this book. I had a hard time respecting her and her attitude to Derek in some chapters. But of course Kristi Ann Hunter crafts an enjoyable story line and for Hunter fans you don't want to miss it! 

Four stars. 

"I received this book from Bethany House for free. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."











Saturday, November 23, 2019

Celebrate Lit Tours-Lake Season: My Thoughts




About the Book

Book: Lake Season
Author: Denise Hunter
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 12, 2019




A lost letter, a new love, and old secrets beckon this summer at the Bluebell Inn.

When their parents die in a tragic accident, Molly Bennett and her siblings pull together to fulfill their parents’ dream: turning their historic Bluebell, North Carolina home back into an inn. The situation would just be temporary—three years at the most—then they would sell the inn and Molly could get back to chasing her own dreams.
Adam Bradford (aka bestselling author Nathanial Grey) is a reclusive novelist with a bad case of writer’s block. Desperate for inspiration as his deadline approaches, he travels to the setting of his next book, a North Carolina lake town. There he immediately meets his muse, a young innkeeper who fancies herself in love with his alter ego.
Molly and Adam strike up an instant friendship. When Molly finds a long-lost letter in the walls of her inn she embarks on a mission with Adam to find the star-crossed lovers and bring them the closure they deserve. But Adam has secrets of his own. Past and present collide as truths are revealed, and Molly and Adam will have to decide if love is worth trusting.

Click here to get your copy.

About the Author





Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than 25 books, including A December Bride and The Convenient Groom, which have been adapted into original Hallmark Channel movies. She has won The Holt Medallion Award, The Reader’s Choice Award, The Carol Award, The Foreword Book of the Year Award, and is a RITA finalist. When Denise isn’t orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling with her family, drinking green tea, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana where she and her husband are rapidly approaching an empty nest. To learn more about Denise, visit her website DeniseHunterBooks.com; Facebook: AuthorDeniseHunter; Twitter: @DeniseAHunter; Instagram: deniseahunter.


Read a premium Excerpt

You can read a premium excerpt of Denise’s Lake Season here.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, November 12
Mia Reads, November 13
Back Porch Reads, November 13
Carla Loves To Read, November 14
All-of-a-kind Mom, November 14
Among the Reads, November 14
Genesis 5020, November 14
Wishful Endings, November 15
CarpeDiem, November 15
Older & Smarter?, November 16
Cultivating Us, November 16
Inside the Wong Mind, November 16
Sara Jane Jacobs, November 17
Avid Reader Nurse, November 17
For Him and My Family, November 18
Jeanette’s Thoughts, November 18
Splashes of Joy, November 18
Robin’s Nest, November 19
Mary Hake, November 19
Baker Kella, November 19
Simple Harvest Reads, November 20 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)
SusanLovesBooks, November 20
Vicky Sluiter, November 21
Quiet Quilter, November 22
Andrea Christenson, November 22
Pause for Tales, November 22
Hallie Reads, November 23
Texas Book-aholic, November 24
janicesbookreviews, November 24
A Reader’s Brain, November 24
Inklings and notions, November 24
Batya’s Bits, November 25
Livin’ Lit, November 25
Remembrancy, November 25


My Thoughts


I enjoyed this book for multiple reasons. When Denise Hunter writes a story, you never really know what to expect or what adventure awaits you. I personally think this is one of the best novels she has written. It is dual time line (one of my favorite things!) and the switching back and forth was well written. I loved all of the characters and the mystery that surrounds the past and present. The setting for the Lake House made me want to visit and having a main character as an author was an added bonus. The only thing that I didn't love was in the historical story there is a character that never seems to feel remorseful. I think that it is pretty realistic in this story line but this book is geared more toward Christian fiction. Because of that, I think perhaps a few more details would have been nice in how the historical side of things was wrapped up. All that to say I really enjoyed this story, the romance was very well done (not over the top but still there), the dialogue was fantastic, and the secondary characters were so well written. 

Five Stars. 

"I received this book from the publisher for free. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."


Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Celebrate Lit Tours: Deadly Christmas Pretense Review and Giveaway


 Deadly Christmas Pretense FB Banner


About the Book

Book: Deadly Christmas Pretense
Author: Dana Mentink
Genre:  Christian Suspense, Mystery, Romance
Release Date: November 4, 2019
Deadly Christmas Pretense Cover 
A cowboy to her rescue…but she’s not who he thinks she is.
Posing as her sister for Christmas is the only way to save her, but Maggie Lofton needs help—even if it means working with her twin’s cowboy ex-boyfriend, Liam Pike. But between the bull’s-eye on her back and the dangerous connection she’s forming with Liam, Maggie’s mission is harder than expected. Will their tenuous partnership be enough to shield her when the killer closes in?
Book #2 in the Roughwater Ranch Cowboys series

Click here to get your copy.

About the Author

Dana-Mentink
Dana Mentink is a two time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award and a Holt Medallion winner. She is a national bestselling author of over forty titles in the suspense and lighthearted romance genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, Harlequin Heartwarming and Harvest House. Dana was thrilled to be a semi-finalist in the Jeanne Robertson Comedy With Class Competition. Besides writing, she busies herself teaching third grade. Mostly, she loves to be home with Papa Bear, teen bear cubs affectionately nicknamed Yogi and Boo Boo, Junie, the  nutty terrier, a chubby box turtle and a feisty parakeet. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

More from Dana

I just love Christmas, don’t you? In our area we have a lovely holiday train. It’s an old steam type train which is decked out in lights for festive holiday tours. I was so thrilled that this cover features just such a train. Of course, in the novel the train is the scene of hair raising danger! Maggie, our heroine in this novel, is a cook. She serves up some mouth watering dishes (when she’s not dodging a killer.) I thought perhaps you might enjoy a Mentink holiday family recipe! God bless you as we enter this holiday season!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, November 1
Among the Reads, November 1
Emily Yager, November 1
KarenSueHadley , November 2
Blogging With Carol, November 2
Batya’s Bits, November 2
Bigreadersite, November 3
My Devotional Thoughts , November 3
She Lives to Read, November 3
Reading Is My SuperPower, November 4
Genesis 5020, November 4
mpbooks, November 4
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 5
Betti Mace, November 5
Quiet Workings, November 5
Blossoms and Blessings, November 6
Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner , November 6
Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 6
Older & Smarter?, November 7
Maureen’s Musings, November 7
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, November 7
Splashes of Joy , November  8
For Him and My Family, November 8
Moments, November 8
Christian Bookshelf Reviews, November 9
Simple Harvest Reads, November 9
EmpowerMoms, November 9
Through the Fire Blogs, November 10
Remembrancy, November 10
Pause for Tales, November 10
For the Love of Books, November 11
Hallie Reads, November 11
Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, November 11
A Good Book and Cup of Tea, November 12
To Everything There Is A Season, November 12
Daysong Reflections, November 12
Texas Book-aholic, November 13
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 13
janicesbookreviews, November 14
Inklings and notions, November 14





To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize package of a  a book necklace, Amazon gift card, and a paperback copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

 GIVEAWAY


My Thoughts

I enjoy reading Dana Mentink's writing and this book was a wild ride. Twins are a part of this story and that added a twist. I liked the setting and Liam is a fun character. I felt like a part of this story was predictable  but the suspense feel of it kept the book moving. While I don't think this is my favorite book I am eager to read Dana's next novel. She comes writes some wonderful family scenes in her books and the characters are well written. If you are wanting to try a new author I highly recommend Dana Mentink. 

"Thanks to the author and publisher for offering me a free copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."

Saturday, November 9, 2019

The Month of Pumpkins: Thoughts on October





I am always excited about the month of October because it is not only my birthday month but also the month of pumpkins. I have always love pumpkins and this year I was able to grow some of my own! I can't wait to try some different kinds next year but I loved the little ones I grew.


October was such a busy month for us. We both ended up being out of town a lot for work and had a couple of family celebrations. We were able to get some family pictures (us and the dogs) on a nice day. They turned out and I was able to get our Christmas cards ordered. I have been attending a ladies Bible study which I have really enjoyed. This past month brought on some thoughts about praying (that is what Bible study is about) and also reminded me to look back and see how God has worked in my life. We don't know what will happen next and things can change so quickly. I am so thankful for a God that holds the future and instead of panic He can fill me with peace. 
The last months of the year are upon us and I am excited. This time of year can be so fun, especially if you focus on the things that matter. 

Have a wonderful month!



Wednesday, November 6, 2019

The Bright Unknown Review with Celebrate Lit Tours

 The Bright Unknown FB Banner





About the Book

Book: The Bright Unknown
Author: Elizabeth Byler Younts
Genre:  Historical Romance
Release Date: October 22, 2019
cover Bright Unkown 
Two young friends embark upon an epic journey across 1940s middle America in search of answers, a family, and a place to call home.
The only kind of life Brighton Turner understands is the one she has endured within the dreary walls of a rural Pennsylvania asylum. A nurse has thoughtfully educated and raised Brighton, but she has also kept vital information from her in order to keep her close. Brighton befriends a boy whom she calls Angel—he doesn’t know his name—and as the two of them learn more about what lies beyond the walls they call home, they fight for their release and eventually escape.
However, the world outside the only place they’ve ever known is not what they expect. They have no real names, no money, and no help—and they must rely upon the kindness of strangers as they walk and hitchhike from Pennsylvania to Michigan to find their last hope of a home.
This heartbreaking journey, narrated in gorgeous prose, explores what it means to belong—and to scour the universe with fresh eyes for the brightness within.

Click here to grab your copy!

About the Author

Elizabeth Younts
Elizabeth Byler Younts gained a worldwide audience through her first book, Seasons: A Real Story of an Amish Girl. She is also the author of the critically acclaimed novel The Solace of Water and the Promise of Sunrise series. Elizabeth lives in Central Pennsylvania with her husband, her two daughters, and a small menagerie of well-loved pets.

More from Elizabeth

The Bright Unknown was born out of a seed of a true story that my husband’s grandmother, Gigi, shared with me. Gigi told me that when she was a young girl living in Oklahoma her mom had a friend who was a nurse. During one of her visits over coffee she would occasionally talk about her patients at the local asylum. One particular story really intrigued Gigi and even decades later she still remembered it. The story was about a patient who had a baby while at the hospital and while Gigi remembers nothing about the patient or the child, she knew that when she moved out of Oklahoma several years later that asylum-born girl was around eighteen and still living within the walls of that hospital along with her patient-mother.
That story stuck with me. This trapped girl and her mother wouldn’t let me go. I began to wonder over her and ask all sorts of unanswered questions. Slowly but surely my imagined story for her came to life. Layer after layer I learned about Brighton, my name for her. I also named two characters after Gigi, her first and middle, as an honor to her. This story was born from a memory but now these characters feel real and present in my life today and I hope you will journey with them in The Bright Unknown.

Blog Stops

The Power of Words, November 2
A Reader’s Brain, November 2
Living Life Free in Christ, November 2
The Christian Fiction Girl, November 3
Inspired by fiction, November 3
Fiction Aficionado, November 4
Genesis 5020, November 4
janicesbookreviews, November 5
Blogging With Carol , November 5
All-of-a-kind Mom, November 5
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 6
To Everything A Season, November 6
The Becca Files, November 7
Bigreadersite, November 7
A Baker’s Perspective, November 8
Connect in Fiction, November 8
Moments, November 9
Bloggin’ ’bout Books, November 9
Simple Harvest Reads, November 10
Betti Mace, November 10
Pause for Tales, November 11
Inklings and notions, November 11
Mary Hake, November 11
Texas Book-aholic, November 12
Hallie Reads, November 12
For the Love of Literature, November 12
Through the Fire Blogs, November 13
For Him and My Family, November 13
Remembrancy, November 14
mpbooks, November 14
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 15
Godly Book Reviews, November 15


My Thoughts


This is the first novel by Elizabeth Younts that I have read. Stories that have something to do with historical asylums intrigue me and most all that I have read pertaining to that history have sucked me in. Needless to say this book had me hooked from page one. While this isn't necessarily a happy book I couldn't stop reading. Brighton's character is very well written and how this author writes detail completely delighted me. From page one I could tell that this author wanted to write a book that had meaning. This history of this story didn't surprise me, I have read about how people were treated in asylums. But by reading this story I am reminded that we live in a broken world. Some things, especially our reaction to mental health, has become more of an open conversation. This was a great book and if you enjoy history I highly recommend this one. 

Five Stars. 

"I received this book from the publisher for free. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."