Saturday, October 13, 2018

Grand Finale + Tour GIVEAWAY: Sweet Home Montana by Lynne Marshall


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Book Tour Grand Finale for
Sweet Home Montana
By Lynne Marshall

We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops
you can see snippets, as well as the link to each full post, below:

Launch - Note from the Author

I’m so happy to be back touring with Prism and am excited to share my new book Sweet Home Montana with everyone. This is book number three in the Charity, Montana trilogy for TULE publishing. It is the sweetest of all three books, in my opinion. Think Hallmark movies and you understand what I’m talking about. No angst or deep drama, but definite issues that both characters must face and “fix”, so they can move forward to a truly fulfilling life...



She had been volunteering at The Acres, as the crew called it, for three years, and Dr. Anderson insisted it was time to move on. To finish that degree in business. Get a job that paid more. In the real world. For Erin, Healing Heart Acres was as real world as she wanted to be. Because it was the place that helped put broken people back together.

Maybe I should start telling her how much I love giving the tour and that I never want to work with the animals again. The absurd reverse psychology trick made her smile.


“Oh, glad to see you’re happy about your schedule,” Elsbeth Anderson said, stepping out of nowhere, catching Erin mid-grin.



Uplifting Reads - Review

"As Erin and Wade's lives weave together, there are naturally some bumps along the road. It's all about how they work through those struggles to understand each other and to nurture the relationship they find themselves embarking upon, in spite of their personal struggles.

This was the perfect book to curl up with on a cold and rainy fall day."


Wishful Endings - Excerpt

Mid-chew, he glanced at the door, surprised, and very pleased, to see Erin come in. He smiled, watched, and waited as she made her entry…

With a toddler?


“Choc milk,” the little brown-haired girl said, all excited.


“Just like I promised.” Erin was completely at ease with the child, guiding her toward the counter to make their order.


Unexplained disappointment surprised Wade, along with a slew of questions about Erin. Was she married? He hadn’t noticed a ring. But, since the kid looked so much like her, she was obviously a mother.




A flashy silver sedan drove up and parked in the lot, and a father-son duo straight out of the pages of Gentleman’s Quarterly magazine got out. The son was sullen, casting a suspicious gaze, as if thinking this was the dumbest idea he’d ever heard of. Breaking with GQ chic, he wore a silly knit cap that stood out for two reasons, it wasn’t that cold, and there was a moose face on it. It took confidence to pull off the look.

The father seemed determined, as many parents were when they arrived, usually after having Healing Heart Acres recommended by someone in the professional community—a teacher, therapist, or pastor. The parents often arrived hoping to find the magic solution to help their kid. Erin knew the look, even though it was on an exceptionally young-looking father’s face.




After the usual welcoming remarks for the acres each person introduced themselves. She saved the father and son for last.

“I’m Wade Conrad. Grew up in Charity, around an hour from here. Heard about Healing Heart Acres and wanted to check it out.”


He seemed pleasant enough, but got his story out fast, probably out of courtesy, unlike Mrs. Pimento who’d gone on and on. Yet, watching and listening to Wade excited Erin, a feeling she’d nearly forgotten where men were concerned. The immediate excitement he provoked in her, was also terrifying. Fortunately, she’d only have to deal with the younger version of him.



Colorimetry - Excerpt

Why did the man make her edgy? Probably because she’d rarely been around such a devastatingly handsome male. She glanced to Brent, sure to become as commanding as his father as he matured. He, unlike his attentive father, watched a ground squirrel instead of the corralled animals, probably not listening to a word she said.

She showed everyone how to hold grain on a flat palm, so the sheep only ate the food and didn’t nibble their fingers. Everyone always got a kick out of that, except Brent, who clearly wasn’t interested.




"If you are looking for a sweet, gentle romance to curl up with on a cool fall evening, then look no further. This book has all the feel good elements with likable characters and a believable story line."



A sharp whistle pierced the air, the kind cowboys used on cattle drives. “Erin!” Wade’s voice called out before she stepped inside. She stopped, turned, waited for the tall, dark-haired and green-eyed man to reach her. Again, an unwanted reaction circled her skin. But she wasn’t here to swoon, she was here to be helpful. He obviously had a problem with his son.



"Sweet Home Montana encompasses sweet, gentle, unhurried romance. It's a story of personal growth—stepping out of complacency and exploring a deeper, more satisfying life."



To keep communication open, nervous as Erin was to have a conversation alone with Wade Conrad, she smiled and widened her eyes. “Need some extra encouragement?” Hoping he couldn’t pick up on her reaction to him.

He was probably used to it with all women. How could he not be, growing up looking like that? He probably didn’t even notice anymore.


“How’d you guess?”


“I’ve been reading Brent’s body language. He’s not here voluntarily, is he.” It wasn’t a question.



Remembrancy - Review

"Lynne Marshall gives readers a taste of small-town Montana life (and made me crave some huckleberry pie in the process) in this sweet romance...

Sweet Home Montana is a read to snuggle up with in front of a fire or under that plaid flannel blanket. Get ready for a little romance this fall."



Once Wade took off, Erin recovered and wandered over to Brent, who sat on a bench staring at his boots. “Mind if I join you?”

He glanced up. Rather than answering, he tipped his chin up, as in yes.


She sat gingerly on the other end of the bench. “I guess I read you wrong.”


He tossed her a confused and perturbed glance. “He tell you I don’t talk to him because he doesn’t like being my brother?”




“What’s the point of this place? Why should I come here?” Brent asked.

“How about, for starters, for the sake of a new experience?” Erin replied. “We offer a chance for people to learn about themselves by participating in activities like daily care routines with our animals. It’s a chance to do something good, too. Then all we do is talk about it afterward.” She carefully left out the part about talking about their feelings. “It’s no biggie.” She played it down, knowing how resistant some teens were about anything they were uncomfortable with. “A lot of teenagers wind up really enjoying it. By the way, the horses would rather hang out with their peers, too.”



Becky on Books - Review

"I really enjoyed Erin and Wade’s story, and was rooting for them to work things out from the very first page. The complications along the way were believable, and though resolved a bit easily, everything was still plausible. The secondary characters–including Brent, Rosie, and Diana–made the story feel well-rounded and Charity, Montana seem like a place I’d love to visit–and eat some pie."



"I enjoyed this sweet story. I felt connected to Erin Chase from the start. I love that she worked at a horse therapy center. What a unique profession!"



"This book is gentle and sweet. Erin and Wade are wonderful."



Wade stood in the back in the main house as the video history about Healing Heart Acres and equine therapy played. Instead of paying attention, he thought about how he’d wound up back home.

After a long pause in communicating with his father, Wade’s excuse being he was too busy, always too busy, his dad had called, and Wade had thought the worse.

“Dad? Is anything wrong?”

“No, Son, everything’s right, I mean great. It’s been ages since we’ve talked.” So true, and unacceptable, and that made his calling suspicious and Wade’s guilt-o-meter whirl.



"This is a sweet & cute romance set in more than one delightful small town with gorgeous scenery and a quirkiness apparently inherent to Montana. There is more ‘telling’ than i like (rather than showing me) and some of the Montana-isms felt a bit awkward with the flow of the story. But overall these characters will quickly win you over, and so does their story – thanks to Marshall’s warm writing voice and sweet plot. If you’re a fan of Hallmark movies, this is a great pick for your reading list!"

Don't forget to enter the giveaway below, if you haven't already...


Sweet Home Montana
(Charity, Montana Book #3)
By Lynne Marshall
Contemporary Romance
Print & ebook, 278 Pages
September 27th 2018 by Tule Publishing

Entrepreneur Wade Conrad is called home to act as a temporary guardian for his teenage half-brother, who’s acting out and needs strong guidance. Wade feels they are both floundering, so he seeks help for Brent at Healing Heart Acres, an equine therapy center.

Erin Chase has been working as an equine therapist since her fiancĂ© called off their wedding with no explanation three years ago. She personally enjoys the peace found through animal therapy and believes in passing on the gift. When Erin meets Wade, she’s instantly drawn to his concern for his brother, as well as his kindness and charm.

Wade treasures time spent with Erin. They both long for more, but Wade’s leaving for California soon and his brother’s needs come first. Will he take a chance on love before it’s too late?



Other Books in the Series



About the Author


Lynne used to worry she had a serious problem with daydreaming, then she discovered she was supposed to write the stories in her head. A late bloomer, Lynne came to fiction writing after her children were nearly grown. Now she battles the empty nest by writing stories which always include a romance, sometimes medicine, a dose of mirth, or both, but always stories from her heart. 

She is a Southern California native, married for almost thirty years, has two adult children she is super proud of, is a dog lover, cat admirer, a power walker, and fellow traveler on this wild road called life!



Tour Giveaway


2 winners will receive ebooks of Her Baby, His Love and Their Christmas Miracle
Open internationally
Ends October 17th

Grab Our Button!

Friday, October 12, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: This Courageous Journey by Misty Beller




About the Book

Book Title: This Courageous Journey  
Author: Misty Beller  
Genre: Christian Historical Romance  
Release date: October 9, 2018

As the fifth daughter in a family of nine children, Noelle Grant has spent her life working to be unique. Her love of stories helps define her goal—to be known around the country as one of the top news correspondents of her time. And what better way to uncover sensational stories than to travel through the mountain wilderness to visit the brother she hasn’t seen in years? The trip comes together perfectly as she plans to journey with family friends who will be settling in the same area. Her first inkling that things may not be as perfect as planned comes in the form of the mountain man they hire as their guide for the final leg of the journey. 

When Daniel Abrams agrees to guide the small group of easterners along his usual journey northward to the Canadian mountains, his gut tells him he’s making the wrong decision. But if he doesn’t take them, who will? The man in charge refuses to consider turning back. As they start out, Daniel can’t help but notice the woman traveling under the care of her friends. Though she appears too genteel to last long in these mountains, she soon reveals a strength that draws him more than he should allow. 

As the dangers of this wilderness become more than the group bargained for, Noelle is faced with the choice to delay her journey northward or proceed alone with the man she’s come to trust against all reason. She never imagines her decision will place her—and the man she loves—in a situation more hazardous than any story her imagination could conjure.

Click here to purchase your copy!


My Thoughts


This Courageous Journey is the second of Misty Beller’s books that I’ve read, and I’m already a huge fan of this author’s unique ability to blend character, setting and plot in such a moving way. This title is so fitting, as Beller’s story entertains while giving insight into a people of courage and a world of grandeur in centuries past.

The Canadian Rockies literally becomes a major character and I was completely enveloped in this world of beauty and danger, experiencing the elements of rain storms, blizzards, wild animals – even a lightning strike and illness – along with Daniel and Noelle. At the same time, I stood in awe at the majesty and beauty of God’s creation that Beller so vividly conveyed.

Daniel and Noelle are strong, appealing characters that I was instantly drawn to. Daniel serves as Noelle’s guide on her trek to reach her brother’s home, and she hopes to unearth some fascinating stories along the way, “stories that would propel her to journalistic renown.” Seeking to be known and respected, Noelle determines that marriage is not for her – and whenever a character thinks that way, you know the opposite is going to happen. Daniel stands a little aloof at the beginning, and the growing relationship between these two – from respect to friendship and deep caring – is pure delight. Their chemistry is palpable and there’s a kissing scene or two that will leave readers weak at the knees, especially when he tells Noelle, “You undo me, woman.”

I loved how faith is woven throughout this story, and Daniel’s own courageous journey to faith in God is one of my favorite parts. Noelle also learns the life lesson that God’s purposes and plans are greater than anything we could ever imagine.

This Courageous Journey is sheer delight and I look forward to much more from Misty Beller.

Highly recommended.

I received a copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.


About the Author

Misty M. Beller writes romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love. 

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and daughters now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy. 

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.


Guest Post from Misty

Ever Been Struck by Lightning?

One of the fun things about being a writer is the crazy topics I get to research. Without giving away too much of the story, part of my research for This Courageous Journey included uncovering what happens when lightning strikes a person. It turns out anything can happen! 

Surprisingly, about nine out of ten people struck by lightning live to tell their story. Each person’s experience seems to be different—some are knocked unconscious, while others are horribly aware of everything happening. One person who was struck said it seemed as if time slowed to a crawl and a white haze surrounded him like a bubble, as excruciating pain shot through him. 

People usually try to determine the path the lightning traveled through them, based on where burn marks appear on both skin and clothing, but sometimes that can be difficult if jewelry or coins were touching the body. Survivors might suffer a variety of short- and long-term effects, including—but not limited to—cardiac arrest, confusion, seizures, dizziness, muscle aches, deafness, headaches, memory deficits, distractibility, personality changes, and chronic pain, among others. That may sound like an awful list, but it does beat the alternative! 

As I considered the possible effects of a lightning strike when I was writing This Courageous Journey, I was reminded once again how magnificent God’s creation is. Both the incredible power contained in one streak of lightning, and the beautiful inner workings of the bodies He created for us. As the Psalmist said, we are “fearfully and wonderfully made!”


Giveaway




To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away a 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 image above or the link below to enter.



Blog Stops


Among the Reads, October 11
The Power of Words, October 12
Multifarious, October 12
Maureen’s Musings, October 12
Splashes of Joy, October 14
Artistic Nobody, October 14 (Spotlight)
Joy of Reading, October 15
Mary Hake, October 15
Livin Lit, October 16
KarenSueHadley, October 17
Remembrancy, October 18
Carpe Diem, October 18
Pause for Tales, October 19
Bigreadersite, October 19
Bibliophile Reviews, October 20

Wishful Endings, October 22
Simple Harvest Reads, October 22 (Guest post Mindy Houng)
Texas Book-aholic, October 24

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Book Blitz + Tour GIVEAWAY: Our Christmas Promise by Tara Randel


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

 Release Blitz for
Our Christmas Promise
By Tara Randel

Our Christmas Promise:
A Christmas Wedding Story
(12 Days of Heartwarming Christmas)
By Tara Randel
Contemporary Romance, Holiday, Novella
ebook, 129 Pages
October 9, 2018

Melissa Upton and Justin Caswell have been best friends since they were kids. Now, they’re all grown up and things have changed, for Melissa at least. She’s content running the family bridal shop, Candlelight and Lace. Excited about an upcoming wedding. She doesn’t even mind attending weddings with Justin, until he dubs them wedding buddies. And now that he’s back in Christmas Town, Melissa realizes she wants more. If she goes after her heart will she lose her best friend?

Justin is back home to take care of business for his estranged father while he recovers from a heart attack. He’s launched his own successful career, is happy with his single status. Until he feels the distance Melissa has put between them. What’s up with his best friend? The more time they spend together, involved in Christmas Town holiday preparations, the more he realizes she’s hoping for more in their relationship. Can Justin see that being in love, and remaining best friends, is the best of both worlds?



Excerpt

Jaycee tossed a paper towel in the trash and met Melissa’s gaze in the mirror over the sink.
“When are you going to tell him?”
“Tell who what?” Melissa asked as she dug in her bag for lip balm.
“Tell Justin you have feelings for him.”
Melissa froze. Blinked a few times and glanced at Jaycee. “What are you talking about?”
Jaycee rested her hip against the counter and crossed her arms over her chest. “Don’t play dumb with me. I see how you look at him, especially when he doesn’t know it.”
“He’s my friend and I’m glad he’s home.”
“Really? That’s it?”
Melissa shrugged and resumed her searching. “What more could there be?”
“You tell me.”
“There’s nothing to tell.”
“Then why don’t you date?”
Melissa gripped the tube of balm in her fingers. “I date.”
“Name the last time you went out with a guy.”
She racked her brain but came up empty. “College, maybe?”
“That was six years ago.”
“No...it can’t be that long.”
Jaycee arched a brow.
“Wait. I went out with Roger Pierce for a while.”
“Until he moved away.” Jaycee shook her head. “I’m telling you, you have it bad for Justin.”
Did she? Did that explain the tingles she’d been trying to ignore? Or had she been without a significant other for too long now?
Slowly spreading the balm across her lips, Melissa met her own gaze in the mirror. Clear brown eyes peered back, but a rosy red had crept into her cheeks. She recognized the look, had seen it on dozens of bride’s faces through the years. 
Good grief, was she in love with Justin?
“Do you care for him as more than just a friend?” Jaycee asked when Melissa had been quiet too long.
“Of course not.”
Despite her words, Melissa flashed back to that Christmas Eve many years ago when they’d promised to be friends forever. How they’d carried through on the vow, remaining friends through high school and stayed in touch when he left Christmas Town for college. She understood why he didn’t return, so she’d made sure to visit him in Boston. Once their friends had started to marry, meeting up at weddings had become their thing. But was that good enough for her now?
Tossing the tube back in her purse with more pressure than she intended, Melissa closed the bag. Pushed her unsettling thoughts away. “You’re imagining things.”
With a shrug, Jaycee pushed from the counter. “If you say so.”
“I say so,” she said, yanking the door open to return to the raucous, overcrowded pub.


About the Author


USA Today Bestselling Author Tara Randel has enjoyed a lifelong love of books, especially romance and mystery genres, so it didn't come as a surprise when she began writing with the dream of becoming published. Family values, mystery and, of course, love and romance are her favorite themes, because she believes love is the greatest gift of all. Tara lives on the West Coast of Florida, where gorgeous sunsets inspire the creation of heartwarming stories, filled with love, laughter and the occasional mystery.



Blitz Giveaway


1 winner will receive a $25 Amazon eGift Card
Open internationally
Ends October 12th

Grab Our Button!

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: Fallen Leaves by Tessa Emily Hall


FallenLeaves_Blog

Welcome to the blog tour & giveaway for Fallen Leaves by Tessa Emily Hall, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!


ABOUT THE BOOK

fallen leaves Title: Fallen Leaves  
Author: Tessa Emily Hall  
Publisher: Illuminate YA Fiction  
Release Date: October 26, 2018  
Genre: YA Contemporary Fiction  

Selena Taylor thought her only worry this fall was starting her junior year at a new arts school in North Carolina, miles away from home. But when she finds out her mom could graduate from rehab sooner than expected—even worse, she could work for her former nothing-but-trouble boss—Selena's determined to create a new life for them. Back in her childhood Kentucky hometown.

Step one? Track down her dad and brother that she hasn't seen in eight years. Her anxiety is put to the test, though, when she unveils a truth that could threaten her dreams. Add to that an art competition that pushes her outside of her comfort zone and a girl who seems determined to come between Selena and her hopeful boyfriend.

Soon Selena must decide whether or not to continue her search for her dad and brother. But is there any hope that the ruins of her broken family could be resurrected? And how could God possibly have a purpose in the midst of these changing seasons?  

PURCHASE: Goodreads | Amazon



MY THOUGHTS

Let me begin by saying that I wish Christian fiction like this had been around when I was a teen. Fallen Leaves is a YA novel that is entertaining, poignant, and filled with inspiration for our daily walk. Tessa Emily Hall has crafted characters that are relatable and who deal with situations applicable to any young adult. Although picking up where the previous novel, Purple Moon, left off, adequate background is provided so that I had no trouble getting into the story. I am thrilled to find a YA Christian novel of this quality and have no hesitancy in recommending it to all teens.

Another description comes to my mind, and that is realistic. Real-life situations and addictions are dealt with tactfully and with a message that readers can take to heart. Selena’s mom had “broken the promise of a ‘new beginning,’ leaving me to become her caregiver once again,” and is soon to graduate from rehab when the story opens. I loved the art theme, as Selena is accepted into the prestigious Lake Lure Academy of the Arts in North Carolina. The artistic part of me (musician) makes it easy to connect with Selena’s creative sketching & painting. “Art is a mirror of our souls; a reflection of our deepest longings and emotions.”

Selena is also a new Christian, and I so easily identified with not only her spiritual growth, but occasional steps backward. Selena’s dreams are to reunite her broken family, and to see the relationship with her boyfriend strengthen. The overall message is the timeless issue of trust … giving control to God and trusting that He is good, even when things don’t work out as we’d like, and that His plans are better than anything we could ever come up with.

This story of grace and hope comes to a very satisfying conclusion, and yet is open for much more to come. What makes Fallen Leaves work so well is that Tessa Emily Hall has a heart for teens that shines through her words. To give a hint of what readers can look forward to, I’ll end with this beautiful closing passage …

     There’s a lot of hurt that’s been buried in my heart over the years. Brokenness in our family that might take some time to repair.
     But I also know that these imperfections can give Him the opportunity to make something new. Something that will be even more beautiful than it was to begin with. Because these cracks in our family? I have a feeling they’ll only allow for more of His light to shine through.
     Perhaps that’s why God created autumn … Because He knew that, on the other side of death, new life beckons.

Highly recommended.

I received a copy of this book through JustRead Tours. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.




ABOUT THE AUTHOR

TessaEmilyHall_Headshot

Tessa Emily Hall writes inspirational yet authentic books for teens to show them they’re not alone—and because she remembers the teen life like it was yesterday (or a few years ago). 

In addition to being a frequent contributor to both online and print publications, Tessa’s debut novel was published while still in her teens. She’s the founder and editor-in-chief of PursueMagazine.net, a Christian teen magazine, and enjoys mentoring other young writers. 

She’s guilty of making way too many lattes and never finishing her to-read list. Tessa’s favorite way to procrastinate is by connecting with readers on her blog, email list, social media (@tessaemilyhall), and website: http://www.tessaemilyhall.com.

Connect with Tessa: Website | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Newsletter



TOUR GIVEAWAY

fallen leaves blog tour giveaway

(1) winner will receive a FALL KIT, consisting of:
  • a signed copy of Fallen Leaves,
  • book swag
  • a fall candle
  • Starbucks Instant Pumpkin Spice Latte
Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight October 8, 2018 and lasts through 11:59pm October 15, 2018. Void where prohibited by law. US addresses only. Winners will be notified within a week of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.


Follow along at JustReadTours for a full list of stops!
cropped-justread-logo.png

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: The 12 Gifts of Christmas by Lena Nelson Dooley




About the Book

Book Title: The 12 Gifts of Christmas  
Author: Lena Nelson Dooley  
Genre: Christian Romance/ Christmas  
Release date: September 4, 2018

Malcolm MacGregor is a descendant of Scotland’s Clan MacGregor and a successful young businessman in Fort Worth, Texas. Alanza Cantalamessa works at a gourmet pizzeria owned by her Brazilian artist mother and her Italian Poppa. Both of them are smitten with each other but Malcolm is too reserved to do much more than make small talk—until a promotion at work that will send him away to Australia for six months. It’s December and he has to do something—fast. 

Praying about the situation, Malcolm decides to give her twelve gifts leading up to Christmas. Their families and friends think they are moving too fast. And a gold-digger who tossed Malcolm aside in the past has now decided he’s the man of her dreams. 

Can Malcolm and Alanza overcome their obstacles before he has to go abroad? Or is it really not meant to be?

Click here to purchase your copy!


My thoughts...


The 12 Gifts of Christmas is a creative and enjoyable read, especially in these weeks leading up to Christmas. For a story where the attraction is almost instant and the relationship progresses rather quickly, Lena Nelson Dooley surprisingly crafts a story where the characters seem real and we get to know them well.

I loved how setting played such a huge part and enjoyed seeing the Dallas/Ft. Worth area through Dooley’s skillful writing. From restaurants to local events, like ICE, the area came alive as Malcolm and Alanza got to know each other. I also enjoyed the emphasis on family as the backgrounds of these two were gradually revealed.

Malcolm and Alanza, of Scottish and Brazilian descent respectively, come from very different heritages, yet they have a lot in common. Both are good-hearted,  comfortable financially, but most importantly, they share a strong faith. My favorite part was the emphasis on seeking God’s guidance and how prayer seemed as natural as breathing, which it should be.

I can’t leave without mentioning that there’s a great scene toward the end where Malcolm MacGregor appears in full Scottish regalia. There’s just something about a Scotsman that gets to me!

The 12 Gifts of Christmas is an uplifting, heartwarming story – perfect for getting in the Christmas spirit.

I received a copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.


About the Author

Multi-published, award-winning author Lena Nelson Dooley is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, her local chapter in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, the Christian Authors’ Network, and Gateway Church in Southlake, Texas. Her forty-plus books have sold more than 875,000 copies. 

Lena’s books have appeared on the CBA, ECPA, and Publisher Weekly bestseller lists, as well as some Amazon bestseller lists. She also writes a popular blog, A Christian Writer’s World, that features other authors’ books. The blog received the Readers’ Choice Blog of the Year Award from the Book Club Network. 

Lena is a three-time finalist in the Carol Awards ACFW contest. Her 2010 release, Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico, won the 2011 Will Rogers Medallion Award for excellence in publishing Western Fiction. Her next series, McKenna’s Daughters: Maggie’s Journey appeared on a reviewers’ Top Ten Books of 2011 list. It also won the 2012 Selah award for Historical Novel. The second, Mary’s Blessing, was a Selah Award finalist for Romance novel. Catherine’s Pursuit, released in 2013, was the winner of the NTRWA Carolyn Reader’s Choice contest, took second place in the CAN Golden Scroll Novel of the Year award, and won the Will Rogers Medallion bronze medallion. Her book, A Heart’s Gift, won RWA’s Faith, Hope, and Love Readers’ Choice Award in July 2017. 

Lena is also the host of The Lena Nelson Dooley Show on the Along Came a Writer blogtalk radio network. She has experience in screenwriting, acting, directing, and voice-overs, and currently serves on the board of directors of Higher Ground Films. She has been featured in Christian Fiction Online Magazine, ACFW Journal, Book Fun Magazine, Charisma Magazine, and Christian Retailing.


Guest Post from Lena

She took the pan off the burner, dropped tiny marshmal-lows into the waiting over-sized mugs, and filled them with the fragrant hot chocolate. “Do you want to drink it here, or would you rather go in the living room? The sofa is more comfortable.” 

“Whatever you want to do.” His honeyed tone wrapped around her like a warm blanket. 

She handed a mug to him, picked up her own, along with coasters and two napkins, and headed into the living room. He followed. 

Alanza’s Best Hot Chocolate 

Ingredients: 

4 cups milk 
1/2 cup sugar 
1/3 cup good quality cocoa powder 
3 tbls. honey 
1 tsp. vanilla extract 
1 dark chocolate bar 
1 can real whipped cream 
Maraschino cherries 

Instructions: 

Heat milk over medium to low heat, stirring constantly until milk starts to bubble slightly (about 10 minutes). Meanwhile, mix sugar and cocoa together until well blended. When milk is ready, gradually add in sugar, cocoa, and honey, stirring constantly. Put heat on low and add shavings of chocolate bar and vanilla. Continue stirring until chocolate has melted. Remove from heat and pour into mugs. Add whipped cream, chocolate shavings, and cherries on top, as desired.


Giveaway




To celebrate her tour, Lena is giving away a grand prize of a $20 Starbuck’s Gift Card and a surprise Christmas gift!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the image above or the link below to enter.



Blog Stops


The Power of Words, October 9
Among the Reads, October 10
A Diva’s Heart, October 10
Luv’N Lambert Life, October 11
Baker Kella, October 11
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, October 12
Britt Reads Fiction, October 13
Texas Book-aholic, October 13
Susan Loves Books, October 14
Splashes of Joy, October 15
Creating Romance, October 16
Bigreadersite, October 16
Mary Hake, October 17
Maureen’s Musings, October 18
Bibliophile Reviews, October 20
Pause for Tales, October 20
More Of Him, October 21
Carpe Diem, October 22

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: Indivisible by Travis Thrasher



About the Book

Book: Indivisible  
Author: Travis Thrasher  
Genre: General fiction, drama  
Release Date: October 23, 2018  

A novelization of the film Indivisible, this is a story of love and marriage and finding each other all over again.

When Darren deploys to Iraq during the surge of 2007, he leaves behind his loving and supportive wife, Heather, and their three small children. Their marriage is the envy of the base, both believing strongly in the calling to serve in the military. Darren knows he’s there to support the troops in their darkest moments as their chaplain, but what he doesn’t realize is that he will face his own dark moments, which will have lasting effects on his marriage.
  
Meanwhile, Heather is creating a community among the other wives and families left behind. She rallies support back home, realizing the dangers the men and women serving overseas are facing, but she also begins to notice a change in Darren during their brief conversations. When he returns, he is no longer the man who left-the man Heather married. His greatest fear is letting her down, but instead of opening up to her, he shuts her out. Their marriage was so strong before. But how can they get back to where they were . . . or find a new way forward?

Indivisible is a story of sacrifice, marriage, and faith that will leave audiences full of hope even amid their most challenging times.

Click here to purchase your copy!

We are excited to announce that this book is going to be a major motion picture!













My Thoughts


I’m flying back home a wounded man. I didn’t lose
a limb and didn’t lose my life. I have no scars anybody can see.
But I carry bags and bags of hurt and sorrow.
I don’t know where I’m going to be able to store them.
- Darren

Often the life experiences of real people make the most moving stories, and that is certainly the case with Darren and Heather. Indivisible is a story that is powerful, thought provoking, compelling, and inspirational. Travis Thrasher has done a wonderful job creating a novelization from the screenplay in such a way that both versions stand strong.

Darren and Heather loved God, loved each other, and believed the way they chose to serve was God’s calling. Darren “wanted to bring faith and confidence in Christ into a place of war,” while Heather became sole caregiver to their three children and ministered to military wives and families. I thought these words spoken to Darren were so true: “Deployments strengthen strong marriages and weaken weak ones.” Both Darren and Heather had a difficult physical and emotional journey during his 15-month deployment, but neither could fully comprehend the impact of that life on the other.

I have found that there are two options to mental survival
over here: one is to constantly be on edge because, really,
at any moment there could be some sort of attack and people
could die. The other is to go numb to the threat and
live as normally as possible.
- Darren

Thrasher realistically conveys the physical and emotional impact of the war, both on the front and at home, and shows the bonds of friendship through secondary characters. Darren’s journal entries are eye opening.

Indivisible is, at its heart, a story of commitment, hope, and love. Darren and Heather face struggles that all can relate to, in having a strong love and faith tested through life’s hardships and tragedies. This promises to be a powerful movie that I’m eager to see.

Highly recommended.

I received a copy of this book through Celebrate Lit. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.


About the Author

Bestselling author Travis Thrasher has written over 50 books and worked in the publishing industry for over twenty years. He has written fiction in a variety of genres, from love stories and supernatural thrillers to young adult series. His inspirational stories have included collaborations with filmmakers, musicians, athletes and pastors. He’s also co-written memoirs and self-help books. 

His novelizations include Do You Believe? and God’s Not Dead 2. Upcoming releases in 2018 include The Black Auxiliary about the lives of the other 17 American black athletes who competed with Jesse Owens in the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. 

Travis lives with his wife and three daughters in Grand Rapids, Michigan.


More about Indivisible

This book is based on a true story, so we’d love for readers and moviegoers to meet the real Darren and Heather Turner:

Darren and Heather Turner both grew up in Georgia, and met in 1999 when Darren was working in campus ministry at the University of Georgia. (Darren is still a Bulldog at heart.) Heather was working as a recruiter for an organization that sends English teachers overseas, and Darren had just returned from a year teaching English in Mongolia when they met. Married that same year, they served another six years together in campus ministry and added three children to their family. 

Through the husband of a friend of Heather’s, Darren learned that opportunities existed for service as a military chaplain. In 2006, Darren completed seminary, was commissioned in the Army, and deployed almost immediately. Their family’s experiences from this timeframe are the basis of the new movie INDIVISIBLE. Darren, who is on active duty, and Heather are passionate about serving military families, marriage counseling, and leading marriage retreats. The Turners currently live in North Carolina with their children Elie, Samuel, and Meribeth. 

Learn more about the Turners!





Giveaway




To celebrate his tour, Travis is giving away a grand prize that includes the Indivisible novel along with a devotional!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the image above or the link below to enter.




Blog Stops


Carpe Diem, October 4
The Becca Files, October 4
Robin is Bookish, October 5
The Power of Words, October 6
Splashes of Joy, October 7
Mary Hake, October 7
Simple Harvest Reads, October 9 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
A Reader’s Brain, October 10
Book by Book, October 10
All-of-a-kind Mom, October 12
Bibliophile Reviews, October 13
Pause for Tales, October 13
Texas Book-aholic, October 14
Cafinated Reads, October 15
Maureen’s Musings, October 17
A Diva’s Heart, October 17
Bigreadersite, October 17