Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Review: New Beginnings + Kindle Fire GIVEAWAY

New Beginnings
By Pamela Jo
The Sands of Time, #1
BHG Publishing, 2015


        Upon her return from her best friend Charlie’s wedding, Victoria found that the beautiful city of Chicago had never seemed emptier and neither had her soul. She realized she was surrounded by all the people in the world and she still felt lonely. 
        Deciding to take her friend Charlie’s advice and make a change in her life, she packed her bags and moved to the west coast of Florida. Little did she know that the young Amish girl that she met on the sandy beaches of the Gulf of Mexico would begin a spiral of emotional changes for both of them.

New Beginnings can be purchased at Amazon

My thoughts

I’m impressed. Some of the most touching stories I’ve read recently have been published outside of the big-name companies, and Pamela Jo is another author I can add to my reading list. With New Beginnings, she has penned a novella with character depth and a premise that is both simple and beautiful, while giving readers much to reflect upon. It often felt like Pamela Jo was sharing her heart.

The title alone has so much appeal, for who of us isn’t thankful for second chances and opportunities to begin afresh? And within the pages of this story, the concept of new beginnings is both literal and spiritual. It’s the first book of a series, the main character moves from the big city of Chicago to the peaceful Gulf Coast area around Sarasota, looking for a change – and through the witness of Amish friends that she meets, gives her life to Christ.

New Beginnings is a story of contrasts – between the worldly and the simple life, between the world’s definition of success and what is really of value. Victoria is an appealing character that I found easy to connect with. Haunted by a past sin made for the sake of convenience and chasing an elusive dream, Victoria lived in a self-made prison of regrets, while longing for a happiness that eluded her grasp. I enjoyed her growing friendship with Rebecca, Lizzie, and the Amish girls at Lizzie’s boarding house – and Victoria’s realization that “Though none of them had much, all of them seemed to have enough.” I think this reflection encapsulates true value in life for all of us . . .

“After everything I went through to achieve success, I realized
it wasn’t even that important to begin with.”

New Beginnings has a satisfying conclusion, with much room for further development. I am eager to continue with each one of these characters and look forward to all that Pamela Jo has in store for us. Recommended.


        Author Pamela Jo, best known as “Whoopie Pie Pam”, is the author of several wonderful story/cookbooks, and the best-selling co-author of the #1 Best Selling series, The Divine Secrets of the Whoopie Pie Sisters.  She is also the founder and creator of the Whoopie Pie Book Club, a well know social media site.
        While battling Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma, Pam created the Whoopie Pie Book Club.  For years, she called a group of ladies in her family by that same name.  Every year, they travelled to Amish Country for a retreat of reading Amish fiction, seeing the Amish sights and eating plenty of Whoopie Pies.
        Inspired by the Amish for their simplicity in facing life, love of God, and honor for family, Pamela found a connection with the Amish.  As a result of her many years of traveling and conducting business with the Amish, she has established close friendships with many Amish families, friendships that she cherishes.  She refers to them as her extended family.

Contact Pamela Jo at:

Thank you to Pamela Jo and Celebrate Lit for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.



Pamela Jo is giving away a special beach bag, including a Kindle Fire tailored for your special day of relaxing at the beach.


  1. Carole, I will be honest this author is new to me. I have never read her books, but you have intrigued me with your review. Sounds like a wonderful book/story. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Katrina, it seems like I find more spiritual depth in indie or small-press published books than from the major houses. I decided to take a chance on New Beginnings when it came up for review and was pleasantly surprised. It will be fun seeing where Pamela Jo takes the series. I can't remember if you have a Kindle or not, but it's currently 99 cents in that version.

  2. I am very interested in learning about this author and reading her books. :-) Thanks for the information.

  3. Great review Carole! I've been quite impressed with independent books I've read recently. Thanks for sharing this with us.

  4. This sounds like a very interesting book!

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  5. Love the sound of this one! mauback55 at gmail dot com

  6. This one sounds very interesting!