Sunday, July 31, 2022

Sabotaged Mission

 



About the Book: 

Framed and on the run…

With nowhere left to hide

When a failed mission leaves CIA operative MacKenzie “Mac” Sharp injured and her partner presumed dead, going off-grid is the only way to survive. But her old flame, CIA officer Gabe Denton, has tracked her down and led a well-connected enemy right to her door. Now with someone trying to frame and kill her, working with Gabe is the only way to clear her name…and stay alive.

My Review:

From the cover of the book to its last page, Tina Radcliffe’s story had me turning pages in this romantic suspense.  There is lots of action, beginning as soon as Gabe Denton convinces Mackenzie (Mac) Sharp to accompany him to Denver to discuss the failed mission that left her seriously injured. “Back!Get back in the house!” Gabe glanced over his shoulder in the same second that the vehicle exploded. 


There are also funny comments like this one to break the tension so you can relax some before the next thing happens to try and stop Mac from reaching Denver. “Are you okay?” Mac repeated. “Your house hit me.”


I always like when I can figure out who the mastermind in a crime and I was happy that I figured out what was happening before a couple of CIA agents! Courage. Danger. Faith. is the motto for the Love Inspired stories and this had them all.  I recommend making this your next read.


I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the author/publisher. All opinions are my own.

 

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Matters of the Heart



Book Description: 

She determines to champion the needs of others, no matter the fallout.

He’s determined to be his own man and make his own way.

Will stubbornness keep them from discovering God’s best?

Unconventional Katie empathizes with the widows and orphans of the Civil War who are searching for a place to call home in Shumard Oak Bend. But with no one to help her, she’ll need to do it secretly, a challenge she readily accepts. Katie’s taken charge before, and she’ll do it again, no matter whom she has to outwit to get the job done.

Hans vows to stop doing everyone else’s bidding. But he follows orders when a pair of emerald green eyes, blazing red hair, and freckles that dance on the bridge of a pert nose conscript him to duty. Be his own man. Who is he kidding? Skunks don’t change their stripes. They leave disasters in their wake wherever they go, just like him.

Overcoming personal obstacles and finding your true self doesn’t mean going it alone. Yet the answer isn’t always in the one you seek.


My Review: 

The story of the fiery and spirited Katie Murphy and the ex-soldier Hans Korhonen brings to life the struggles we all face in what’s in our hearts. Both of them were deeply wounded by others and it was encouraging to see the transformation both of them went through as they let God heal their brokenness and find out who they truly are as His children.


This is book three in the Discovering God’s best series. This can be read as a standalone because this is the first I have read and I was able to easily follow the story. I recommend this book to readers of all ages for its clean and wholesome love story and its hope-filled Christian message.

I received a complimentary copy and was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, July 25, 2022

Byway to Danger Giveaway

 



About the Book

Book: Byway to Danger

Author: Sandra Merville Hart

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: July 19, 2022

Everyone in Richmond has secrets. Especially the spies.

Meg Brooks, widow, didn’t stop spying for the Union when her job at the Pinkerton National Detective Agency ended, especially now that she lives in the Confederate capital. Her job at the Yancey bakery provides many opportunities to discover vital information about the Confederacy to pass on to her Union contact. She prefers to work alone, yet the strong, silent baker earns her respect and tugs at her heart.

Cade Yancey knows the beautiful widow is a spy when he hires her only because his fellow Unionist spies know of her activities. Meg sure didn’t tell him. He’s glad she knows how to keep her mouth shut, for he has hidden his dangerous activities from even his closest friends. The more his feelings for the courageous woman grow, the greater his determination to protect her by guarding his secrets. Her own investigations place her in enough peril.

As danger escalates, Meg realizes her choice to work alone isn’t a wise one. Can she trust Cade with details from her past not even her family knows?

Click here to get your copy!

My Review: 

History comes alive through the story of Meg Brooks and Cade Yancy as they risk everything to help the Union win the war.  Secrecy is paramount and neither Meg nor Cade at first trust each other with sharing their role in the spy network. I enjoyed seeing them slowly grow to rely on each other and share their concerns. Watching their courtship blossom gave me the opportunity to see the courageous woman Meg was during a crisis and the stalwart man Cade was who helped Meg and many others. 


Faith, generosity, and loving your neighbor as yourself were all evident in this story. I would recommend this book if you like any of these genres: historical fiction, Christian fiction, or clean romance. 


 I read this book without having read the other two in the series. I could easily follow the story. I received a digital copy of Byway to Danger through Celebrate Lit,  but was not required to write a positive review. This review is my own opinion.


 About the Author

Sandra Merville Hart, award-winning and Amazon bestselling author of inspirational historical romances, loves to discover little-known yet fascinating facts from American history to include in her stories. Her desire is to transport her readers back in time. She is also a blogger, speaker, and conference teacher. Connect with Sandra on her blog, https://sandramervillehart.wordpress.com/.

 More from Sandra

In Byway to Danger, Book 3 of my “Spies of the Civil War” series, both Cade and Meg—our hero and heroine—are Union spies living in Richmond, the Confederate capital in 1862. As if this isn’t dangerous enough, Meg is also a former Pinkerton spy. One Pinkerton spy was hanged in the spring and three others now sit in Richmond jails.

 

Meg works as an assistant in Cade’s bakery. The strong, quiet man keeps a secret from Meg to protect her, for he’s a conductor on the Underground Railroad. He provides food, clothing, and a safe place to stay until he’s able to take them on to the next stop several miles outside the city. Cade has done this for years before the Civil War and continues as the war rages, a perilous mission.

Historically, early in the war on May 23, 1861, three men escaped slavery and fled to Fort Monroe. Frank Baker, Shepard Mallory, and James Townsend had worked on Confederate fortifications before escaping on a rowboat. They sought the safety of Union soldiers at the fort. The men informed Union Major General Benjamin F. Butler that they escaped from Confederate Colonel Charles K. Mallory of the 115th Virginia Militia. 

The next day, Confederate Major John B. Cary arrived at Fort Monroe under a flag of truce. Cary met with Butler and requested he return the enslaved men to Mallory as required by the Fugitive Slave Act.

Butler did some fast thinking. Since the three men had been building fortifications for war, they could be seized as “contraband of war” and didn’t have to be returned. His refusal to return the men was a pivotal decision and sparked a future law that protected fugitives who sought the protection of Union camps.

Dozens of fugitive men, women, and children had joined Baker, Mallory, and Townsend at Fort Monroe within three days. Many others fled to the fort in the following months. “Grand Contraband Camp” was established about three miles from Fort Monroe on the charred remains of Hampton to accommodate the hundreds of fugitives.  It was the nation’s first self-contained black community. By 1865, thousands lived in this camp.

Part of my research for this novel involved a trip to Virginia’s Fort Monroe. (If you love history and have never visited Fort Monroe, I recommend it!) Though I wasn’t certain of my story at the time of my visit, I was so inspired by the fort’s history that I knew it had to be part of my story. And it is!

 Avenue of Betrayal, Book 1, is set in the Union capital of Washington City (Washington DC) in 1861, where a surprising number of Confederate sympathizers and spies lived. Boulevard of Confusion and Byway to Danger are set in Richmond, the Confederate capital in 1862. Actual historical spies touch the lives of our fictional family.

 Through both real and fictional characters, this series highlights activities spies were involved in and some of the motives behind their decisions.

 I invite you to read the whole “Spies of the Civil War” series beginning with Book 1 Avenue of Betrayal, Book 2 Boulevard of Confusion, and Book 3 Byway to Danger!

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 22

Spoken from the Heart, July 22

Bizwings Blog, July 23

Inklings and notions, July 24

Betti Mace, July 25

Book Looks by Lisa, July 25

Texas Book-aholic, July 26

For Him and My Family, July 27

Connie’s History Classroom, July 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 29

deb’s Book Review, July 30

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 31

Vicarious Living, July 31

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 1

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 2

Blossoms and Blessings, August 3

                          Giveaway!

To celebrate her tour, Sandra 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/1f7f8/byway-to-danger-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

The Dreaming Beauty Giveaway




About the Book: 

Once upon a dream, two cursed people fell in love . . .

Tansy White doesn’t want to end up alone like her three aunts who raised her, but when she is betrayed by her would-be betrothed, she fears she might never change her fate. At her aunts’ suggestion, she seizes the chance to visit Rose Cottage, the country home of her late mother. For years, dreams of the cottage have haunted Tansy, and she is convinced it holds the answer to her hidden past. But after getting caught in a terrible storm, she meets a man who is just as determined as she is to learn all her secrets.

Marcus Taylor, brother to the Duke of Westmorland, is also troubled by vivid dreams. On a sleepless night, as a tempest rages outside his brother’s estate, he makes a discovery far more mysterious than any dream: a young woman, cold as ice, lies unconscious in the library, and he is sure she is the key to solving his problems. When she wakes, what begins as a shared quest for information turns into an unexpected friendship. As they piece together the fragments of their pasts, they discover a tangled web of lies, and their feelings for each other become just as entwined. But is their love as strong as their dreams . . . or their fate?





My Review: 

With such a clever title, I was looking forward to reading the fairy tale inspired story that is set in the Regency period. The story of Tansy White had mystery, treachery, romance, complicated relationships, traces of the fairy tale, and danger are all wrapped up into one amazing tale. 

I thought it was ingenious to have spinster aunts who raise orphaned Tansy. Each woman was unique, contributing pieces to the story, but also provided a sense of mystery to Tansy’s past. I think my favorite was her younger Aunt Daisy who was childlike and believed in fairies. Her simple outlook on life was refreshing and, in many ways, helped Tansy to sort out her true feelings for Marcus. 


There were many parts to the story that kept me guessing as to what was happening; some I figured out, while others were a complete surprise. I highly recommend this book and look forward to the next Regency fairy tale inspired story of Ms. Walker’s. This is the second book in the Enchanted Regency series. It would be helpful if you had read the first book, The Masked Baron (which I loved!), but it’s not necessary in order to enjoy this story. 4.5/5  stars


I received an advanced reader copy of the book. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own. 


Doesn't this sound dreamy? Here is chance to win your own print copy!



Rafflecopter: a Rafflecopter giveaway http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0ae98b8a313/?widget_template=5cf8617cb5df9c301e802fff

Friday, July 15, 2022

The Deadly Shallows




If you like action, suspense, and romance, this book has it all. This third book in the Coastal Guardians has a team of experts who not only have cases to investigate on land, but also on the water.  Criminals beware; you will be caught and brought to justice.

Having several events happening at once, Ms. Pettrey did an excellent job in developing the romantic relationships of several of the couples who work together. I liked the way that Noah Rawley and Brooke Kessler operated as one with their investigation. I also enjoyed seeing their relationship develop. Noah was able to give support and be there for Brooke when she needed him after a terrifying experience and loss of a friend.


The portrayal of the mastermind behind the mass shooting showed how ruthless he was and how he would stop at nothing to achieve his goal. I was a bit surprised at his motive and was expecting it to be a bit different. But, revenge can lead some people to do terrible things.


I would recommend reading the other two books in the series to give you a history of the other couples who are in the book and their previous cases. While this can be read as a standalone, I hadn’t read book two and felt that I had missed out on some details that would have made the story even better than it was. 


I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. The opinions in this review are my own.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Blueberry Bungalow Giveaway

 


About the Book

Book: Blueberry Bungalow

Author: Konnie K. Viner

Genre: Fiction (Christian mystery/romance)

Release date: November 10, 2021

It’s been a year since Maci Driscoll’s husband passed unexpectedly, and she is stuck in lonely despair. As an established painter, she finds her inspiration and artistic spark is gone. In a desperate attempt to step out of her funk, Maci sells her seaside home and moves inland to a sleepy little town in Maine.

But peace and inspiration aren’t the only things she finds in Laurel Hill. The century home she buys has secrets to divulge, a long-lost couple to reunite, a murder to solve, and maybe even new love.


Click here to get your copy!

My Review: 

I enjoyed this story of a second chance at love as Maci leaves the life she has always known to begin a new life after the death of her husband. Moving to a small town, Maci finds more than she ever thought she would as she meets good people, busy bodies, and uncovers and solves several mysteries. 

Learning about the life and faith of Ginny, the woman who lived when the house was first built, had me reflecting on what it means to be a blessing to others. She had much sorrow and tragedy in her life, but she chose to become a mentor and encourager to other women instead of letting life's circumstances embitter her. I thought sharing her story through a journal was a perfect way of seeing what she went through. Ginny's legacy continued on as Maci read her journal and found comfort and strength for what she was experiencing. 

I recommend reading the story of Maci's journey. You will be in for a treat as long lost secrets are brought to light and the past can be put to rest for several people so joy can be restored. 

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

 About the Author

Konnie Viner is also the author of Amaryllis Journey, a 2020 Golden Scroll fiction book of the year award winner. She writes to encourage women with the assurance of God’s love and faithfulness in difficult life experiences. Her first published book is Rested Soul, Resilient Heart, Finding Hope in the Storms of Abuse and Betrayal (2017),. She holds a BS in Education from the University of Kansas and an MS in Business Management from the University of Redlands, CA. Konnie cherishes time with her three grandchildren. Her hobbies include photographing God’s beautiful creation, quilting, and reading.

 More from Konnie

Blueberry Bungalow, a 2022 Selah Award Finalist, is a cozy mystery set in the blueberry fields of Maine, Recently widowed and struggling, Maci Driscoll moves from the seaside of Maine to quiet little Laurel Hill to escape the past and figure out who she is without her beloved husband. Never did she expect to find a long-lost letter, solve a decades-old murder, or fall in love, but she does.

 Maci’s Blueberry Pie Recipe

 Crust

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons salt

1 cup unsalted butter, cold

½ cup water

Filling

4 cups blueberries

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ cup all-purpose flour

 Glaze

1 egg, beaten

coarse sugar

 Directions

Preheat the oven to 425º and place a rack in the middle of the oven. In a large bowl, whisk together flour and salt. Add the butter and mix it into the flour using two knives or pastry blender. Slowly add the cold water, a little at a time, and mix until the dough just comes together. Remove the dough from the bowl and shape into 2 equal balls, flattened into discs. Wrap each in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight. When ready, unwrap the dough and allow it to warm up for a minute or two. Lightly flour your surface, then roll one disc into a circle until it's large enough to fit into the pie plate with an inch of overhang. Fold the dough into fourths, then place carefully in the pie dish. Unfold and smooth into the dish, dressing the crust however you choose (crimping, fluting, or my favorite, just pressing into it with a fork). Fill with the blueberry filling, then roll out the remaining disc of dough and cover the blueberries entirely, making sure to cut a few slits in the top crust for steam to escape. Lightly brush the top crust with a beaten egg, then sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to  350º and bake for an additional 45-55 minutes.

Keep an eye on the pie. If the crust begins to brown too quickly, tent the pie with foil. If the filling begins to bubble, you may also wish to place a baking sheet on the rack below the pie to catch any drips.

Remove from the oven and set on a wire rack to cool.

Serve warm.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, July 1

An Author’s Take, July 2

Texas Book-aholic, July 3

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, July 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, July 4

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, July 5

Inklings and notions, July 6

For Him and My Family, July 7

deb’s Book Review, July 8

The Avid Reader, July 9

Blogging With Carol, July 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 10

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, July 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 12

Pause for Tales, July 12

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 14

Book Looks by Lisa, July 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Konnie is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and signed copy of 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/1f7f1/blueberry-bungalow-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Impending Strike



About the Book:

Elite Guardian Charlie Lee knows that there is no future with the woman he loves—fellow Guardian Lizzie Tremaine. And he gets it. Lizzie’s a single mom focused on protecting her daughter, and Charlie’s got his own baggage anyway. It’s easier, and safer, to keep things the way they are.

Then, the unthinkable happens. While Charlie is undercover, he’s seriously injured…and his memory of the past four years is gone. But maybe it’s the fresh start he didn’t know he longed for.

And now he’s getting too close…

Lizzie cares for Charlie, but she’s lost all the men she’s ever loved and can’t risk her heart again. Still, she’s determined to protect Charlie, and help him discover who attacked him—and why.

But in the process, she begins to discover an unburdened, impossible-to-resist version of the man she knows. And—along with the details of his attack—Charlie seems to have forgotten their reasons for keeping things platonic. Suddenly, all of their self-imposed rules are gone, and Lizzie needs things to get back to normal, stat.

It’s her heart…or his life.

Problem is, the closer Charlie gets to uncovering his memories, the closer he gets to trouble. What will protecting Charlie cost Lizzie?

Another edge-of-your-seat Elite Guardian thriller!



My Review: 

Charlie Lee is in the wrong place at the wrong time as he overhears a conversation that he wasn’t supposed to while on an undercover assignment. His partner, Lizzie Tremaine is given the assignment of protecting him while the Elite Guardian Team tries to unravel the reason for Charlie’s brutal attack. Charlie’s amnesia does not help determine what the plot might be, only that it is going to be catastrophic.

Lizzie appears to be one tough team member, but as she begins to see a different side of Charlie, she wonders how she will be able to keep her feelings for him in check. The relational tension between the two of them was one that made the story interesting as I wondered how things were going to work out for them. 


The villain was ruthless and someone who I never suspected. With several false trails I wonder if you will be able to discover who is behind the evil plot…


With action, romance, and intrigue, Impending Strike will keep you turning the pages until the end. I received a copy of the book and was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

The Masked Baron



About the Book: 

Andalin is accustomed to her father’s frequent travels—and to being left behind. So when he returns home and instructs her to pack her belongings, she is bewildered—but there is no time for questions as she is whisked away on a mysterious journey under the cover of night. When their tense flight leads them into the forbidding Black Forest, the pair quickly finds themselves in great peril. With little hope of escape, father and daughter are spared when rescue appears in the form of the mysterious Dark Rider, a notorious deadly highwayman feared by all he meets. But his assistance does not come without a price: he is taking Andalin with him. Now her fate rests in the hands of the enigmatic masked man whose secrets are inescapably tied to the beautiful young woman now in his charge.


My Review

I was caught up in this inspired story of Beauty and the Beast as Andalin Durante is rushed away from her beloved home by her father and taken to live in a neglected mansion with Lord Ellison Cadogen. The rumors of the Dark Rider (aka Lord Cadogen) and tales of the terror he has caused in the nearby village had me shrinking in the corner. Andalin was much braver and far more courageous than I would have been! She didn’t give into fear,  but looked beyond her circumstances to help the tortured Dark Rider find peace.

There were so many things to love about this book that I was ready to reread it as soon as I turned the last page.  If you like books with a Gothic flair, a mystery, goosebumpy adventures, and happy endings, this book is 100% for you! 



Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Critical Alliance


About the Book:

Mackenzie Hanson's special set of skills opened the door to a successful career as a professor of cybersecurity at a Michigan university, allowing her to put her criminal past behind her. But when a long-ago partner in crime delivers a cryptic message about her father's tech company being under cyberattack, she heads for Montana to secure exposed assets, close security breaches, and hopefully save lives.

Diplomatic Security Services special agent Alex Knight is back home in Montana to decompress from a mission gone wrong. But even as he's trying to relax, he's drawn into another mystery, complete with suspicious deaths, lethal threats, and whispers of espionage that all have one thing in common--a beautiful cybersecurity expert with a dark past.

When the situation turns deadly, Alex and Mackenzie will have to work together to find the answers they need--before someone silences Mackenzie for good.

USA Today bestselling author Elizabeth Goddard weaves a tangled web of nail-biting suspense and heart-stopping romance in this fast-paced conclusion to her Rocky Mountain Courage series.



My Review: 


Mackenzie Hanson has a criminal past that no matter what she does, she cannot seem to escape it. Coming to face her failures and allowing the Lord to help her make what was a bad situation and use it for the good was what I enjoyed most about the book.

The romantic interest, the action and the revealing of the villain made this a great third book in the Mountain Courage series. I have to say that I really did think the bad guy was someone else, so it was fun to be surprised at who was the enemy, Nebulous 2.0. If you are a fan of inspirational romantic suspense stories, then you will really like this book and the entire series.

My thanks for a copy of this book. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.


Questions by Erin and Answers from Elizabeth:

This book deals with cyber-security as the villain and heroine are hackers. What led you in that direction? 

 

I have a computer science degree and worked in the software industry for almost a decade before retiring to become a writer. Cybercrime is a huge issue since we are all connected to technology so I decided to dive into the topic, especially since I love to bring intrigue into my adventure stories, this one in Montana. 

 

What was the most interesting (or most frightening) thing you learned in the research you did for this book? 

 

While conferring with a cyber security expert, I learned that almost anything I could imagine a hacker could do—they actually CAN do. 

 

 What was your favorite part of writing this book/series? 

 

I loved writing about both my characters, Mackenzie and Alex. I especially enjoyed writing about Alex's character and his background as a Diplomatic Security Services special agent. 


What's coming next and when can we expect it? 

 

Cold Light of Day is book 1 in my brand-spanking-new series, Missing in Alaska, 

and will release in February 2023. I’m so excited for you to get your hands on this first book. 


 Readers can stay in the know by signing up for my newsletter at my website: elizabethgoddard.com


The Letter

  Book:  The Letter Author:  Edwina Kiernan Genre:  Christian Historical Romance Release date:  November 1, 2022 She wants a new life. He’s ...