Saturday, February 23, 2019

Ladies of Intrigue by Michelle Griep

An enjoyable collection of stories about strong women who are treasured for their strength as well as their beauty.

I love reading about feisty women who break convention and do what is right.  This collection doesn't disappoint.

Each story takes you back in history where women had a particular role to play with expected behavior.  The main characters of these stories are not conventional.  

I had a favorite one - The Doctor's Woman.  I think it was because I love stories about the West and this fit the bill.  It made me think of an old movie- Drums Along the Mohawk.  

I received this free from Celebrate Lit to review.


About the Book

LadiesOfIntrigue_Cover
Title: Ladies of Intrigue
Author: Michelle Griep
Genre: Christian Historical
Release date: February 2019
Publisher: Barbour
3 Page-Turners Under One Cover from Reader Favorite Michelle Griep!
Can truth and love prevail when no one is as they appear?
The Gentleman Smuggler’s Lady
Cornish Coast, 1815
When a prim and proper governess returns to England from abroad, she expects to comfort her dying father—not fall in love with a smuggler. Will Helen Fletcher keep Isaac Seaton’s unusual secret?
The Doctor’s Woman (A Carol Award Winner!)
Dakota Territory, 1862
Emmy Nelson, daughter of a missionary doctor, and Dr. James Clark, city doctor aspiring to teach, find themselves working side by side at Fort Snelling during the Dakota Uprising. That is when the real clash of ideals begins.
A House of Secrets
St. Paul, Minnesota, 1890
Ladies Aide Chairman, Amanda Carston resolves to clean up St. Paul’s ramshackle housing, starting with the worst of the worst: a “haunted” house that’s secretly owned by her beau—a home that’s his only means of helping brothel girls escape from the hands of the city’s most infamous madam.
Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

MichelleGriep_AuthorPhoto
Michelle Griep has been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She seeks to glorify God in all that she writes—except for that graffiti phase she went through as a teenager. She resides in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, where she teaches history and writing classes for a local high school co-op. An Anglophile at heart, she runs away to England every chance she gets, under the guise of research. Really, though, she’s eating excessive amounts of scones while rambling around a castle. Michelle is a member of ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) and MCWG (Minnesota Christian Writers Guild). Keep up with her adventures at her blog “Writer off the Leash” or visit michellegriep.com.

Guest post from Michelle

3 Reasons to Read Historical Fiction
Guest post by Michelle Griep
Believe it or not, some readers snub historical fiction, preferring instead to stick to contemporary reads. Several have good reason to, simply preferring one genre over another. But others have never given historical fiction a try. If you fall into that camp, here are some reasons you should consider reading a tale from the past.
  1. Historical fiction books are not as boring as your high school history class.
Does the thought of endless names and dates make you break out into hives? Good news! Historical fiction is a painless way to glean some historic facts without mindless memorization. You can experience a different era and culture vicariously through heroes and heroines that live on the pages of yesteryear.
  1. Makes for great conversation.
In a world that prides itself on keeping up with the Kardashians, dare to add a little cultural zest to your next dinner conversation. Reading historical fiction arms you with interesting tidbits of things that’ve happened in years gone by.
  1. Because truth is timeless.
Some people yearn to go back to a simpler time. The truth is, though, that the grass isn’t necessarily greener on the historic side of the fence. People have had tough issues to deal with no matter the era. . .but therein lies a great reason to read historical fiction: truth is timeless. Be it ancient, biblical, medieval, Victorian, or anything in between, truth never changes.
In my new release, Ladies of Intrigue, you’ll experience all these things and more. Find out about the smuggling trade in Cornwall in The Gentleman Smuggler’s Lady. Learn about the rough and dangerous life on a military fort during the 1860’s in The Doctor’s Woman. Find out why the gilded age wasn’t as glittery as we often think in A House of Secrets.
Don’t be doomed to repeat history. Grab a cup of tea and master it with a great read!
Carpe Diem, March 8

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Michelle is giving away a grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card and a free copy of Ladies of Intrigue!!
Be sure to comment on blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/da8c/ladies-of-intrigue-celebration-tour-giveaway

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, February 23
The Power of Words, February 23
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, February 23
Blogging With Carol, February 24
Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 24
Mary Hake, February 24
Kathleen Denly, February 25
Genesis 5020, February 25
Splashes of Joy, February 25
Faery Tales Are Real, February 26
Inspired by fiction, February 27
All-of-a-kind Mom, February 27
Back Porch ReadsFebruary 27
Andy Carmichael, February 28
Stories By Gina, February 28
Emily Yager, March 1
Multifarious, March 1
Baker kella, March 1
Remembrancy, March 2
BigreadersiteMarch 3
Vicky Sluiter, March 4
Book by Book, March 4
Pause for Tales, March 6
Simple Harvest Reads, March 6 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)
Carpe Diem, March 8

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Ellie's Redemption by Molly Jeeber

Who wouldn't love Ellie?  She was kind and thoughtful.  She was loving.  She was beautiful. But she had a past that could ruin everything.  Can she finally have the future she always dreamed about or was she going to pay the price for her past mistakes?

This book is about making mistakes and asking for forgiveness.  It's about understanding.  It's about community and acceptance.

I loved Ellie's story.  She came to realize her mistakes and learned from them.  She is not perfect. But GOD is willing to accept and forgive.  Some members of the community have to learn this.  We are not here to judge others.

We all have made mistakes.  It is important to learn from them.

I received this free to review from Celebrate Lit.

About the Book

ellies Redemtion
Title: Ellie’s Redemption
Author: Molly Jebber
Genre: Christian fiction, Amish
Release date: January 29, 2019
1912, Charm, Ohio
Ellie Graber is determined to restore her bad reputation in Charm, Ohio. She regrets leaving Amish life and the danger and heartache she caused her family and friends. Ellie loves working with Liza, and her best friend and cousin, Hannah, at Liza’s Amish Charm Bakery, attends church, and obeys Amish law, but the gossip about her past life won’t stop. Joel Wenger’s deep blue eyes tell her he cares for her, but she suspects his parents have warned him to stay away from her. Joel wants to trust Ellie’s changed but his sister, Maryann, who left Amish life broke their hearts. Will Joel ignore his parents and friends, face their anger and ridicule, and give her a chance?

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Molly JebberMolly Jebber writes Amish Historical Romance. Her latest release, ELLIE’S REDEMPTION, is the second book in her Amish Charm Bakery Series. Molly’s books have been featured in Publisher’s Weekly, USA Today’s HEA, and Romantic Times. Her books have received widespread media attention throughout the US. Her books are sold in print and Ebook throughout the US and United Kingdom. She’s a touring speaker for Women’s Christian Connection, other women’s organizations, and she offers presentations on writing and the Amish. She says the most rewarding part about writing stories is meeting wonderful readers who become friends through social media and at her speaking events. Please visit her website: http://www.mollyjebber.comfor a full list of her books (and options stores to buy them), speaking events and recipes.
She loves God, her family, and friends. She says yes to swimming, the beach, golf, and time with her family and friends, and no to coconut, onions, and skydiving!

Guest Post from Molly

Hi Friends!
Ellie likes newcomer Joel, and he’s the first Amish man to show interest since her return to Charm. She’s afraid when he learns of her rebellious past and the danger she brought to her family before turning her life around, he’ll end their courtship. Joel is frustrated his sister left Amish life before his family moved to Charm. He chooses not to tell Ellie about her, until he has no choice. What does the future hold for Ellie and Joel when their secrets are revealed?
Along with the story of Ellie’s Redemption are recipes!
Here’s one just for you!

Ellie’s Surprise Cookies
1 cup shortening 2 cups rolled oats (quick cook)
1 cup white sugar 1 teaspoon soda
1 ¼ cup brown sugar ½ teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon cinnamon 1 ½ cups chocolate chips
2 eggs 2 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon salt

Sift dry ingredients. Cream sugar and shortening. Add eggs and beat until fluffy. Stir in dry ingredients. Add oatmeal, vanilla and chocolate chips. Dough will be crumbly. Spoon a teaspoon of dough at a time on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Blog Stops

Quiet Quilter, January 29
Carpe Diem, January 29
Lighthouse Academy, January 30
Bigreadersite, February 2
Mary Hake, February 2
Maureen’s Musings, February 2
EmpowerMoms, February 3
Inklings and NotionsFebruary 4
Robin is Bookish, February 5
Texas Book-aholic, February 6
SusanLovesBooks, February 7
Henry Happens, February 9
Bibliophile Reviews, February 10
Vicky Sluiter, February 11

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Molly is giving away a grand prize that includes an Amish doll, a handmade lap quilt (can be used as wall hanging), an Apple Pie recipe tea towel, a Blessings journal, a handmade quilted potholder, a $10 Amazon Card, Ellie’s Redemption Print Book, a mug, a 2019 Planner, pad and pen set, and a bookmark!!


Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/da8b/ellie-s-redemption-celebration-tour-giveaway

Saturday, January 26, 2019

The Forgiving Jar by Wanda Brunstetter




The hardest thing is to forgive someone who has hurt you.  It is even harder to forgive yourself.  Michelle and Sarah had help with The Forgiving Jar.

The Forgiving Jar is the second book in a series by Wanda Brunstetter.  It seems like I took a speed reading course as I finished this delightful book so quickly.  I couldn't put it down.  I am excited to know that there will be a book three in August 2019.

We all would benefit from the love and kindness of the Lapp Family.  Could Michelle and Sarah learn from their past mistakes?  Could they learn to forgive?

Pick up this book.  You won't be sorry.  It is a treasure.  Throughout the book, there are "pearls of wisdom" to read, think about and put into practice.

I received this free to review.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

A Love To Behold

I just completed book 3 of a series by Sharlene MacLaren.  I was moved by Lydia's determination.  She left all she knew behind to teach children that needed her so desperately.  She was given the gift to serve.   She loved her students and rejoiced in their successes.  She had a plan.  But GOD had additional plans for her.

Reese was one special man.  He followed GOD and did his best to take care of his family.  He opened the door and his heart to those who needed him and something wonderful happened.

At times, it was difficult to read about the destruction made by hatred.  But with every hurtful act, kindness and love was shown by others in the community.  GOD is there and will see us through.

I received this free to review from Celebrate Lit.

About the Book

A Love to Behold
Title: A Love to Behold
Author: Sharlene MacLaren
Genre: Christian romance, historical
Release date: January 8, 2019
Publisher: Whitaker House
Two years after the Civil War, Lydia Albright, 27, is an established teacher in Boston when she senses God’s call to leave the comfort and security of her job and go south. She accepts a position to teach in a school for former slaves in Charleston, South Carolina. A church there that’s affiliated with the American Missionary Association offers support, along with room and board at the parsonage.
The Ku Klux men are hell-bent on seeing that the new school fails. Lydia’s life is threatened, and the parsonage, church, and school are vandalized.
But they haven’t contended with a strong, determined woman like Lydia before. It also helps that she has a couple potential suitors on her side.
A Love to Behold is a tale of people who grow strong in the face of adversity and a church that learns love, compassion, and acceptance, even in the face of cruelty and hatred.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Sharlene maclarenBorn and raised in west Michigan, Sharlene MacLaren attended Spring Arbor University. Upon graduating in 1971 with an education degree, she taught second grade for two years, then accepted an invitation to travel internationally with a singing ensemble for one year. In 1975, she came home, returned to her teaching job, and married her childhood sweetheart. Together, they raised two lovely daughters, both of whom are now happily married and enjoying families of their own. Retired in 2003 after thirty-one years of teaching, “Shar” loves to read, sing, travel, and spend time with her family—in particular, her adorable grandchildren!
A Christian for over fifty years, and a lover of the English language, Shar always enjoyed dabbling in writing. She remembers well the short stories she wrote in high school, and watching them circulate from girl to girl during government and civics classes. “Psst,” someone would whisper from two rows over, always when the teacher’s back was turned, “pass me the next page.”
In the early 2000s, Shar felt God’s call upon her heart to take her writing pleasures a step further, and in 2006, she signed a contract for her first faith-based novel, Through Every Storm, thereby launching her writing career. With eighteen published novels now gracing store shelves and being sold online, she daily gives God all the glory. She dedicated her last novel, Their Daring Hearts, to Jesus.
Shar has done numerous countrywide book signings and made several television appearances and radio interviews. She loves speaking for community organizations, libraries, church groups, and women’s conferences. In her church, she is active in women’s ministries, regularly facilitating Bible studies and other events. She and her husband, Cecil, live in Spring Lake, Michigan, with their beautiful white collie, Peyton, and their ragdoll cat, Blue.
Shar loves hearing from her readers. If you wish to contact her as a potential speaker for a church function or would simply like to chat with her, please feel free to send her an e-mail at sharlenemaclaren@yahoo.com. She will do her best to answer in a timely manner. You may also find her on Facebook.

Guest Post from Sharlene

My dear readers,
It has indeed been my great privilege and pleasure to write this series set in Civil War times. What a thought-provoking, amazing, and heart-wrenching era in American history.
If you read all three books in the “Forever Freedom” series—Summer on Sunset Ridge, Their Daring Hearts, and A Love to Behold—you will have gotten some history lessons regarding the Religious Society of Friends, also known as Quakers; Abolition; the Underground Railroad, which the Quakers were instrumental in launching; life as a Union soldier in the Civil War; the Freedmen’s Bureau; and Reconstruction, that period following the war when the south had fallen into great dis-repair. Also prevalent in this third book is a bit of history regarding the origin of the Ku Klux Klan, a hate group that formed during the Reconstruction period.
Although I did not appreciate history as a young girl, as an older adult, I’m quite fascinated by it. History itself is a great teacher. Learning about it can be everything from exhilarating to depressing, challenging and yet exciting. It is my prayer that as you read my books, you’ll not only find them entertaining, but also inspiring and uplifting. I aim to encourage, not discourage. Much of history—if we dwell on it—can be disheartening, but focusing our hearts and minds on Christ gives us courage and confidence. Let us learn from history, but let us look to the future with hope in our hearts.
With love and a prayer for God’s best blessings,
Shar

Blog Stops

Maureen’s Musings, January 22
Genesis 5020, January 23
Splashes of JoyJanuary 25
Mary Hake, January 26
Godly Book Reviews, January 27
Daysong ReflectionsJanuary 27
Robin is Bookish, January 28
The Becca Files, January 30
Texas Book-aholic, January 31
Bibliophile Reviews, February 3
Carpe Diem, February 4
Bigreadersite, February 4

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Sharlene is giving away a grand prize of a $20 Starbucks gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d8d2/a-love-to-behold-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, January 21, 2019

WOMAN OF COURAGE

Wanda Brunstetter did it again!  I can't wait to read any of her books.

This story was about Amanda and her determination to reach her destination.  Amanda was on a journey of discovery.  She was on a mission.

The book was titled Woman of Courage.  Amanda, her friend - Yellow Bird and Little Fawn were women of courage.  Their courage came from God.

Joshua 1:9 English Standard Version (ESV)

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Their faith gave them strength.  Their strength gave them courage. Their courage gave them the ability to continue their journey through difficulties and sadness.  

I loved the book.  This edition was a Collector's Edition as it continues the story of Little Fawn.  I want to read more about Little Fawn and her journey.  

Thank you, Wanda Brunstetter, for another treat.  I finished this book on a cold, brisk day. The temperature might be -4 outside but my heart is warm with the message  it gave  to me!

Coming Into Her Own

  Tybee Island sounds like a wonderful place to visit.  Maybe we could stay there?  It's a place where I could relax and take a much nee...