Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Chasing the Horizon

 



About the Book: 

Her only chance at freedom waits across the horizon

Upon uncovering her tyrannical father's malevolent plot to commit her to an asylum, Beth Rutledge fabricates a plan of her own. She will rescue her mother, who had already been sent to the asylum, and escape together on a wagon train heading west. Posing as sisters, Beth and her mother travel with the pioneers in hopes of making it to Idaho before the others start asking too many questions.

Wagon-train scout Jake Holt senses that the mysterious women in his caravan are running from something. When rumors begin to spread of Pinkerton agents searching relentlessly for wanted criminals who match the description of those on his wagon train, including Beth, she begins to open up to him, and he learns something more sinister is at hand. Can they risk trusting each other with their lives--and their hearts--when danger threatens their every step?

My Review: 

Beth and Ginny Rutledge are on the run from Thaddeus Rutledge, a man who will stop at nothing to put the women in his life away so he can have control of their money. The plan Beth executes to escape from him was brilliant as they join the wagons going west. Beth and Ginny are continually looking over their shoulder with the fear of being discovered, adding to the suspense of the story. 


The details that the author uses throughout paints a vivid picture of not only the hardships of the journey but also the beautiful place they are going to be homesteading. I felt as though I were with Beth, Ginny, and the entourage that join them. There are many unknowns at this point in the story that leaves me wondering what is going to happen next, I can’t wait to read the upcoming book.


Lovers of historical romance with a faith element throughout it will enjoy reading this first book in the A Western Light series.  I can see this being the beginning of a TV mini series. 


I received this complimentary book from the publisher through Austenprose PR. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

The Cowboy's Secret Past

 

About the Book: 

He's not the same man he was, but maybe now he's ready to be a father. Since leaving his wild rodeo days behind, rancher Trevor Morgan has sobered up and built a faith-filled life. So he's shocked when the woman caring for his grandfather intrudes on that solitude. Nurse Hope Burke has hidden motives for coming to the Lazy M Ranch--she believes Trevor is the father of her orphaned nephew. Can a loving aunt and a wary cowboy change a little boy's life forever? 


My Review:

I love the Morgans and their family ranch, the Lazy M. When Hope Burke arrives at the homestead to help nurse Gramps (Gus) back to full recovery after surgery. While she is hoping to find answers foe her nephew, Cole,  I don’t think she expected her life to be totally turned upside down. 


I don’t live on or near a ranch, but I think I would love to after reading this book. I love the way the family, staff, and the townspeople are supportive of one another Hope just naturally is able to let down her guard after so many years of doing things on her own. Trevor was very good for her when he says, “I want you to do what your heart tells you to do, not what fear is whispering.” I love the faith that Trevor displays throughout the book. Hope is just what Trevor needs in helping him overcome his grief and see the possibilities that life has to offer.


One of my favorite characters in this series is Gramps. He has years of experience and offers wise counsel. “My advice is to stay open to detours. We get so fixed on the map, that we miss what’s right in front of us.”


I highly recommend reading this book and the other two in the Lazy M Ranch series. I was given a complimentary copy of the book. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own. 

The Irish Matchmaker

 



About the Book:

As daughter of a well-known matchmaker, Catríona Daly is no stranger to the business of love--and sees it as her ticket away from the sleepy village that only comes alive during the annual matchmaking festival. Enter Lord Osborne's son, Andrew, who has returned to the festival after being disappointed by a rival matchmaker's failed setup. Catríona seizes the opportunity to make a better match for the handsome man--and for herself!

Cattle farmer Donal Bunratty is in desperate need of a wife after loss left him to handle the farm and raise his daughter on his own. Shy and lacking the finer social graces, he agrees to attend the matchmaking festival to appease his daughter. But when he arrives, it's not any of the other merrymakers that catch his eye but rather his matchmaker--who clearly has eyes for someone else.

Catríona will have to put all her expertise to work to make a match that could change her life forever. Will her plan succeed? Or will love have its own way?

My Review: 

With the attention given to the details of the beautiful Irish countryside and the Gaelic words and phrases, it was extremely easy to become immersed in the story of the single matchmaker, Catríona Daly. I imagine it must have been difficult not finding a match of her own as she continues to help other people find their true love. I thought it was funny when Catríona sets her heart and hopes for her own with a handsome, suave gentleman and matches him with ladies she knows he will not like.

Donal Bunratty was a gentle, yet awkward man in social settings. I felt a bit anxious for him as he leaves his farm on several occasions to attend the town’s matchmaking festivities. He was my favorite character because of his champion’s heart and going against all odds.

I loved Donal’s daughter, Sara. She was nearly the story stealer with her sweet spirit and her caring nature. It was easy to love her and want to see she had a mama in her life. Of course, she was the perfect matchmaker herself when she convinced Donal that it was time for him to find a wife.

I highly recommend this Irish love story for readers of all ages. I would love to see this made into a movie. I received a complimentary copy of the book. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own.

Monday, February 12, 2024

While the City Sleeps


 While the City Sleeps 

Amid the hushed city, two hearts must navigate danger and deception, bound by a love that outshines the stars.

Katherine Schneider's life as a dentist in 1913 New York is upended when a patient reveals details of a deadly plot while under the influence of laughing gas. As she is plunged into danger, she seeks help from the dashing Lieutenant Jonathan Birch, a police officer she has long admired from afar.

Jonathan has harbored powerful feelings toward Katherine for years but never acted on them, knowing his dark history is something she could never abide. Now, with her safety on the line, he works alongside her through the nights as they unravel the criminal conspiracy that threatens her . . . even as he keeps his deepest secrets hidden at all costs.


My Review: 

I loved this book as Ms. Camden writes like only she can with her attention to details and an intriguing plot that make her stories come to life. Dr. Katherine Schneider learns of a dangerous plot that threatens New York City. She is one, bold young woman as she doesn't stop at seeing things made right and helping avert a disaster if at all possible. I enjoyed when she goes into the territory of a deadly Mafia family. I laughed when she faces off with Jonathan's grandmother. It took real guts to find her and ask for help.

I highly recommend this story with danger, suspense, interesting characters, and intrigue, you are sure to want to read this first book in the Women of Midtown series. Readers of all ages will certainly enjoy it.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through AustenProse book tours. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Rescuing You

 


About the Book

Book: Rescuing You

Author: Robin Patchen

Genre: Christian Romantic Suspense

Release Date: January 9, 2024

A heart-pounding tale of danger and devotion, the riveting second installment of the Wright Heroes of Maine series by a USA Today bestselling author.

CIA agent Michael Wright’s world crumbles when his girlfriend, Leila, is snatched off the street and later seen in the grasp of a terrorist he’s been tracking, Michael blames himself. Keeping his identity secret from her clearly didn’t protect her. Now he must defy the Agency and fly to Iraq to rescue her.

Leila Amato escaped Iraq a decade earlier, only returning in her worst nightmares. But those nightmares have come true when she finds herself captive and all alone, or so she thinks until she sees her identical twin sister.

Michael tracks Leila to a desert compound, but his rescue mission goes awry when he discovers her sister needs to escape as well. His detailed strategy can only ensure one woman’s safety. Now they’re on the run, trying to get out of the country before their enemies track them down.

But Leila’s kidnapping is only one small part of a larger plot—one that endangers thousands of lives—and now he can’t trust anyone. Not even the woman who’s stolen his heart. A woman who’s been keeping secrets of her own…

A high-stakes international chase full of romantic suspense, spies, and a ticking time bomb that will keep you reading all night long.

 My Review: 

Michael Wright zips through desert towns, swims long distances in a river, and dodges bullets, all in order to rescue his girlfriend Leila from terrorists. It's a really good thing that he is a CIA operative! As Leila and Michael share about their pasts, the more surprising it is to see how Leila's family ties are key to an international case that Michael has been involved in for several years.


This is one action-packed adventure from the first page to the last that I couldn't stop reading. While this is the second book of The Wright Heroes of Maine and the first that I have read, it can certainly be read as a standalone. However, there were some mentions to the first book, so I am interested in reading it. I also am looking forward to reading the next book in the series because the Wright brothers are a great sibling team. If you like books with action, romance, and seeing faith in the lives of the characters, you will want to read this book.


I was given a complimentary copy of the book through Celebrate Lit. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own.


Click here to get your copy!

 About the Author

Robin Patchen is a USA Today bestselling and award-winning author of Christian romantic suspense. She grew up in a small town in New Hampshire, the setting of her Nutfield Saga books, and then headed to Boston to earn a journalism degree. After college, working in marketing and public relations, she discovered how much she loathed the nine-to-five ball and chain. After relocating to the Southwest, she started writing her first novel while she homeschooled her three children. The novel was dreadful, but her passion for storytelling didn’t wane. Thankfully, as her children grew, so did her writing ability. Now that her kids are adults, she has more time to play with the lives of fictional heroes and heroines, wreaking havoc and working magic to give her characters happy endings. When she’s not writing, she’s editing or reading, proving that most of her life revolves around the twenty-six letters of the alphabet.

More from Robin

I spent a week this year serving refugee women on the Greek island of Lesvos. Along with helping to distribute food and clothing, I gave hand massages. It seems like such a little thing, but it was powerful.

Many didn’t speak English, and I found it difficult to connect even with those who did. What do I have in common with women escaping war or oppression?

But I could perch on a tiny stool at their feet and rub lotion on their hands. I didn’t know their stories, but God did. So while they chatted with friends in languages I couldn’t understand, I prayed silently. As I did, God stirred in me a deep love for each one.

Imagine the courage it must take to leave everything you know—your home, your community, in some cases, even your family—to seek freedom. Imagine how desperate or afraid or, frankly, hopeful a person must be to attempt it.

The heroine in Rescuing You did just that. An Iraqi who came to Christ as a teenager, Leila feared her family would discover her secret and felt she had no choice but to run away. Resettled in Germany, away from her mother, father, and twin sister, she built a life for herself and fell in love.

And then someone snatched her back to Iraq.

Rescuing You is about a man determined to save the woman he loves. It’s about a woman willing to risk everything for the freedom to…

…Love the man she chooses

…Live a life of purpose, and mostly…

…Worship the One True God

It’s easy to take our freedom for granted—and to forget that true and lasting freedom isn’t political or social but spiritual. Christians are free in Christ no matter what their society looks like.

But what an incredible blessing to live in a free country.

Rescuing You barely scratches the surface of the refugee crisis. It’s mostly about a man and a woman and whole bunch of terrifying villains. Even so, I pray it’ll stir in you a deep love for refugees seeking freedom worldwide. Pray for them and for the nations they’ve escaped. Our world needs Jesus.

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 3

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 4

The Lofty Pages, February 4

Betti Mace, February 5

Blossoms and Blessings, February 6

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 7

An Author’s Take, February 8

Pause for Tales, February 8

Texas Book-aholic, February 9

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, February 10 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, February 10

For Him and My Family, February 11

Book Looks by Lisa, February 12

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 13

Life on Chickadee Lane, February 13

Blogging With Carol, February 14

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 15

Holly’s Book Corner, February 15

Lakesidelivingsite, February 16

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Robin is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy of Running to You and a $75 Amazon 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/2a0c0/rescuing-you-celebration-tour-giveaway


Wednesday, February 7, 2024

A Summer on Bellevue Avenue

 

About the Book

Book: A Summer on Bellevue Avenue

Author: Lorri Dudley

Genre: Christian historical romance

Release Date: January 9, 2024

In the world of the elite, reputation is everything…

Wealthy heiress Amanda Mae Klein is set to marry the man she loves, Wesley Jansen—the only person she trusts to help ease her anxiety among the social climbers of high society. Until the daughter of a union boss falls down a flight of stairs at Wesley’s office in the middle of the night…and the woman claims Wesley pushed her.

Seeking solace from the growing scandal, Amanda flees to the mansion-dotted seaside of Newport. Wesley follows to disprove the rumors and win back the trust of Amelia and her father. But soon, Amanda finds not only her social status but her life at risk. As dire events pit the two against each other, will their love find a way to survive?

 

My Review: 

“A scream and a tumbling sound woke Wesley Astor Jansen. He jolted upright from his desk and swiped at the paper that was stuck to his cheek.”  


This story begins with a mystery right away as to what happened when Wesley dozed off at his desk after hours at his company. Guilty until proven innocent,, Wesley has the unenviable task of convincing Amanda, his soon-to-be fiancé, and everyone else that he is not to blame for the lady’s unfortunate accident.  Couple this with other accidents that keep happening to Amanda and you’ll find this a page turner and quick read. I enjoyed the mystery and the steadfastness of character that Wiley had in proving his innocence. 


Favorite quote: “A person’s value didn’t come from their bank account, bloodlines, or social connections. Their worth was determined by those loved and who loved them in return and by God who gave His son so they could have life. And she palled to live let to the full.”


I received a copy of the book through Celebrate Lit. A positive review was not required. All opinions are my own.


Click here to get your copy!

 About the Author

Lorri Dudley has been a finalist in numerous writing contests and has a master’s degree in Psychology. She lives in Ashland, Massachusetts with her husband and three teenage sons, where writing romance allows her an escape from her testosterone filled household.

 

 

 

 

More from Lorri

Moguls, Millionaires, and Midas

Imagine parties where the dining guests could dig through a sand centerpiece for rubies, diamonds, sapphires, and other precious stones to take home as party favors. Or celebrating elaborate pet birthdays, where dogs are seated around a formal dining table and served liver, rice, and cake. Fancy dining on horseback as guests eat while riding. At the mention of the Gilded Age in Newport, Rhode Island, Robin Leach’s voice naturally pipes in my head, “These are the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.”

Imposing wrought iron gates, expansive manicured lawns and gardens, and opulent French chateaus or Italian palazzos—the summer “cottages” of Newport’s famous self-made moguls of America’s Gilded Age stir the imagination and leave us wondering if we glimpsed a bit of what heaven may look like. What was accomplished, built, and achieved still impresses, and I had oodles of fun researching the era and its eccentric society walkers.

One of my favorite stories regarding the elites was the rivalry between “old money” Caroline Astor and “new money” Alva Vanderbilt. Legend has it that Caroline Astor frowned upon the Vanderbilts and did much to prohibit the new money Vanderbilts from having true social standing. Alva Vanderbilt concocted a plan to pry her way into old-money elitism by planning a fabulous costume party with all the who’s who of New York’s knickerbockers. Alva personally delivered Mrs. Astor’s invitation, and when Mrs. Astor refused to receive her, Alva Vanderbilt rescinded Caroline Astor’s daughter, Carrie’s, invitation. Hearing she was uninvited to the event, Carrie bent her mother’s ear and got her to acquiesce. Caroline Astor formally visited Alva Vanderbilt and attended the costume party, solidifying the Vanderbilt’s arrival into high society.

Living a little over an hour from Newport, I’ve toured many of the mansions and hiked the cliff walk along the luxurious shoreline. It was during one of these tours that the plot idea struck for Summer on Bellevue Avenue and the romance between two Gilded sweethearts torn apart by scandal was born.

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, January 26

Devoted To Hope, January 26

Texas Book-aholic, January 27

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 28

Sylvan Reads, January 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 30

Betti Mace, January 31

Alena Mentink, January 31

For Him and My Family, February 1

Simple Harvest Reads, February 2 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

An Author’s Take, February 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 3

Cover Lover Book Review, February 4

Blossoms and Blessings, February 5

Holly’s Book Corner, February 5

Life on Chickadee Lane, February 6

Pause for Tales, February 6

Connie’s History Classroom, February 7

Book Looks by Lisa, February 7

Lily’s Corner, February 8

She Lives To Read, February 8

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Lorri is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon 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/299bf/a-summer-on-bellevue-avenue-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, February 5, 2024

When the Waters Came

 

About the Book

Book: When the Waters Came

Author: Candice Sue Patterson

Genre: Christian/Historical/Romance

Release Date: January, 2024

An act of greed or an act of God?

Introducing a new series of 6 exciting novels featuring historic American disasters that transformed landscapes and multiple lives. Whether by nature or by man, these disasters changed history and were a day to be remembered.

Pastor Montgomery Childs has tended his flock in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, for two years. While his pews are full every Sunday, he most desires to see a reckoning between God and the kings of industry who recreate on Lake Conemaugh. The pleasure grounds, flowing alcohol, and business dealings of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club taunts Monty as he works to heal the wounds inflicted from his own privileged childhood among Pittsburgh society. Like Noah, Monty prays against the evil surrounding him, but he never expects God to send a flood.

It takes five days for the Red Cross to respond to the Johnstown flood disaster, but when it does, Annamae Worthington is ready to help. Apprenticing under Clara Barton has prepared her for the job, but nothing can prepare her for the death and destruction that awaits. As if the survivors haven’t suffered enough, typhoid fever ravages the town, resurfacing suppressed emotions regarding her father’s death.

Narrowly surviving the flood and the horrifying things he’s witnessed, Monty’s faith is floundering. Then a Red Cross nurse puts him to work helping with the typhoid fever victims arriving at the hospital tents every hour. Monty and Annamae work together distributing disinfectants and supplies, housing orphans, and serving those left behind. Slowly, his faith resurfaces. A kinship forms between them neither can ignore. But when an investigation into the collapsed dam points to the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, secrets emerge that may tear them apart.

 

My Review:

“Life is fleeting, as we’ve all learned. We mustn’t live the days granted to us with regrets.” 

Creating a fictional story using original source documents incorporated into the book I think would be difficult to do, but the author did an excellent job with the Johnstown, Pennsylvania flood. The scene when the waters catch the town by surprise and tragedy strikes make it seem as though you really are a part of the event too. 


I liked the dual POV of Monty, the pastor, and Annamae, the Red Cross nurse. I thought this provided a well rounded plot and character development for both Monty and Annamae. They each had past hurts they had to work through and forgive those that had wronged them. Speaking the truth in love is not easy, but how Monty and Annamae challenged each to take a closer look at what was hindering them from moving forward showed that they truly cared. As Annamae told Monty, "Keep your gaze fixed upon the One who created those stars, Monty. He’ll guide you home." 


If you enjoy historical fiction with a love story, you’ll want to read this book. It does have an assault that takes place, so I would advise readers to be at least a young adult. It is not graphic, but does tell the extent of the injuries. Be sure and read the author's notes at the end of the story. They are interesting and provide more details as to what really happened.  


I was given a copy of the book from the publisher through NetGalley and Celebrate Lit. I wasn’t expected to write a positive review. All opinions are my own. 

Click here to get your copy!

 About the Author

Candice Sue Patterson studied at The Institute of Children’s Literature and is an elementary librarian. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons in a restored farmhouse overtaken by books. When she’s not tending to her chickens, snuggling with her Great Pyrenees, or helping children discover books they love, she’s working on a new story. Candice writes Modern Vintage Romance–where the past and present collide with faith. For more on Candice and her books, visit www.candicesuepatterson.com.

 

 

 More from Candice

On May 30, 1889, the industrious residents of Johnstown, Pennsylvania fell into slumber to the sound of rain pattering their rooftops, unaware that, for many, it would be their last night on earth. This was the thought I carried with me through the entire journey of writing When the Waters Came. Every survivor’s account of that day, every loss, every miracle, every emotion will stick with me for years to come.

My first knowledge of the Johnstown Flood came several years ago when I watched The Men Who Built America in its first airing on the History Channel. The idea that so great a loss of life could’ve easily been prevented by some of the richest men in the world strummed an invisible chord inside me. I remember looking at my husband and saying, “I’m going to write a book about it someday.”

A few more years went by and each time I sat down to plot a new story idea, Johnstown whispered across my heart, but the timing wasn’t right. Then, in 2021, I was shopping at our local community book fair and stumbled upon a first edition of History of the Johnstown Flood, Illustrated by Willis Fletcher Johnson, published in 1889, months after the disaster. Not meaning to sound hokey, I felt as if God handed me the book Himself and confirmed He wanted me to write this story. The next year, at the same book fair, I found a first edition of The Life of Clara Barton by Percy H. Epler, published in 1919. It contained transcripts of her journals and correspondence, some specifically mentioning the Red Cross and her role in aiding the survivors of the Johnstown flood. Once again, I felt that God had provided all the material I would need to tell my tale. Then, in 2022, when my publisher reached out looking for proposals for a new series centered on disasters, I knew the time had come to remind folks of that tragic day.

I’ll be honest, I shed a lot of tears during my research. The accounts are heartbreaking. But the faith and determination in some of those accounts are inspiring as well. Many of the characters in When the Waters Came are real survivors of the flood, and Clara Barton, herself, walks on and off the pages throughout the story.

In May 2023, a month before I turned the manuscript in to my publisher, my husband and I traveled nine hours to Johnstown to experience what we could for ourselves and to make sure my historical facts were correct. I stood where the South Fork Dam once did. I imagined the roar of the water as the dam crumbled. I toured the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club clubhouse, where America’s elite once recreated. I stood at Colonel Unger’s homestead where he’d stood that fateful day, powerless to reinforce the dam and save the folks in Johnstown below. I walked the rows of 777 graves in Grandview Cemetery honoring the unidentified bodies that were rescued. I thought of all the lost loved ones never found.

Where the retelling of the Johnstown Flood is hard and tragic, I also packed the story with plenty of faith, hope, and love to give readers a well-balanced experience. For on-site videos, behind-the-writing-scenes info, and more details about the Johnstown Flood, subscribe to my newsletter and follow me on Facebook and Instagram.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, January 27

Devoted To Hope, January 27

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 28

Tell Tale Book Reviews, January 29

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 30

Mary Hake, January 30

Texas Book-aholic, January 31

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 1

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 2

She Lives To Read, February 3

Blossoms and Blessings, February 3

Simple Harvest Reads, February 4 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Cover Lover Book Review, February 5

Book Looks by Lisa, February 5

Life on Chickadee Lane, February 6

Pause for Tales, February 6

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 7

For Him and My Family, February 8

Connie’s History Classroom, February 9

To Everything There Is A Season , February 9

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Candice is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon e-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.

https://promosimple.com/ps/299c0/when-the-waters-came-celebration-tour-giveaway


Chasing the Horizon

  About the Book:  Her only chance at freedom waits across the horizon Upon uncovering her tyrannical father's malevolent plot to commit...