Sunday, June 30, 2019

Spotlight + GIVEAWAY: Bipartisan Love by Caryl MacAdoo



About the Book

Book: Bipartisan Love  
Author: Caryl MacAdoo  
Genre: Historical Christian Romance  
Release date: June 20, 2019  

Don’t lean to your own understanding. Acknowledge God in all your ways, and He will direct your path.

Does time truly heal a broken heart? Cody thought it had until she walked into the diner like she owned the world and back into his life as if she owned him. Can betrayal ever be completely forgiven? Cindy thought it could until she saw him with the bleached blonde. Her Cody! Separated eighteen years, Cody Wayne Buckmeyer and Cindy think they can put the past behind them and work toward a common goal, a congressional seat . . . but is that possible?

Click here to purchase your copy.

 

About the Author


      Praying her story gives God glory, award-winning, best-selling author Caryl McAdoo loves revisiting beloved characters in her novels. And her readers are glad she does! She’s blessed that her titles earned over fifty-percent 5-Star ratings and eighty-five to ninety percent 4 & 5-Stars! 
      With forty-four novels (thirty-four in the last four-and-a-half years), it’s obvious she loves writing, but singing the new songs the Lord gives her also rates high. (Listen to a few at YouTube.) 
      Married to Ron, her high school sweetheart, she counts their four children and eighteen grandsugars life’s best blessings. The McAdoos live in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door.
 

More from Caryl

I totally enjoy revisiting characters from previous stories! That’s one reason I love writing ‘Family Sagas” like the Texas Romances that has ten full length novels and Cross Timbers Romances with two books and counting! The third launches this coming September. 

In BIPARTISAN LOVE, we get to spend time again with the Buckmeyers—Travis and Emma Lee from Texas Romance Book Ten CHIEF OF SINNERS. My heart could barely leave these dear people after book ten, so I’ve written a few “Companion Books” (five and counting 😊) that go with the Texas Romance series—either going back to meet ancestors or forward for their descendants or just more stories with the characters you already love. 

Readers first met Cody Buckmeyer and his kissing cousin (by marriage) best friend Cynthia Kramer as pre-teens in SON OF PROMISE. In that story, Emma Lee, so longing to be a mom, gets her heart’s desire in Cody, her husband’s son she’s never known about. The two youngsters became fast friends, but Cindy went overseas when LBJ gave her father an ambassadorship. 

It’s been eighteen years, and Cody’s engaged to another. After her letters stopped, he gave up all hope. A liberal Democrat, Cynthia comes home after working in Hubert Humphries’ losing bid for the presidency, and wants Cody, a conservative Republican, to run for a Congressional seat with her as his campaign manager! 

How’s this supposed to work?  


Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away ...

Grand Prize – $50 Gift Amazon Card 
1st Prize – Signed, Paperback copy of CHOICE of all my books 
2nd Prize – Signed copy of Bipartisan Love 
3rd Prize – eBook copy of Bipartisan Love 
4th Prize – eBook copy of CHOICE of all my books!!

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

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Review + GIVEAWAY: Andrew by Jennifer Beckstrand



About the Book

Book: Andrew  
Author: Jennifer Beckstrand
Genre: Amish Romance  
Release Date: June 25, 2019

Andrew, Abraham, and Austin Petersheim’s family business has earned them the nickname The Peanut Butter Brothers. But if their matchmaking younger siblings have their way, all three may soon bear another title: husband . . .

Handsome, hardworking, and godly, Andrew Petersheim has always been sure of his place in his Wisconsin Amish community. He’ll be a welcome catch for the local girl who finally captures his heart. Mary Coblenz certainly isn’t that girl. Two years after “jumping the fence” for the Englischer world, she’s returned, unmarried and pregnant. Yet instead of hiding in shame as others in the community expect, she’s working at the Honeybee Farm, ignoring the gossips—and winning over Andrew’s eight-year-old twin brothers ... 

For all Andrew’s certainty about right and wrong, it seems he has a lot to learn from Mary’s courage, grace, and resilience. She’s changing his notions about forgiveness and love, but will she in turn accept the challenge of starting over and choose to stay—with him?

Click here to grab your copy!


My Thoughts


Jennifer Beckstrand and stories with matchmaking schemes go hand in hand! From the intuitive wisdom that comes with age, to the enthusiastic persistence of youth, Beckstrand weaves subtle and often laugh-out-loud humor with spiritual themes that touch our daily faith walk. Andrew begins a new series that brings us back to the Honeybee Farm and the delightful gun-toting Aunt Bitsy – now married, but still with the colorful hair.

Age knows no boundaries when it comes to matchmaking. First, it was Anna and Felty, two of my favorite fictional characters, and now it’s the incorrigible boys, Alfie and Benji Petersheim. With their grandparents having moved into their house because of health needs, the two boys have been relegated to sleeping in the cellar – hence their desire to marry off three older siblings and get their bedroom room back.

On the surface, Andrew is a cute and delightfully entertaining romance, but there’s much more complexity to this story. Mary, pregnant and unwed, returns to her Amish community after having left it for the English world, and finds acceptance in an unexpected source – not from family and friends, but from Aunt Bitsy. Andrew, initially attracted to Mary until he realized she was pregnant, reflects the judgmentalism of the Amish community. I loved his spiritual journey of learning a lot about grace and forgiveness, that things aren’t always black and white.

Beckstrand has crafted yet another wonderful story with easily relatable characters and life lessons of acceptance, redemption and second chances. I am eager to spend more time with the mischievous Alfie and Benji, as well as their remaining older brothers. Abraham releases in November of 2019.

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



Jennifer Beckstrand is the two-time RITA-nominated, #1 Amazon bestselling Amish romance author of The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hillseries, The Honeybee Sistersseries, and The Petersheim Brothers series for Kensington Books. Huckleberry Summer and Home on Huckleberry Hill were both nominated for the coveted RITA® Award from Romance Writers of America. 

Jennifer has written twenty-one Amish romances, a historical Western, Jessie and James, and the nonfiction book, Big Ideas. She and her husband have been married for thirty-four years, and she has six children and seven adorable grandchildren, whom she spoils rotten.

 

More from Jennifer

If you enjoyed The Honeybee Sisters, you’re going to love The Petersheim Brothers, or the Peanut Butter Brothers as they’re known in their small Amish community of Bienenstock, Wisconsin. The Petersheim brothers work their small farm and make peanut butter. The idea for The Petersheim Brothers series came when two of my friends and I were creating The Honeybee Sisters Cookbook. My friend Alicia suggested I write a book about Peanut Butter Brothers, and the idea stuck. 

One of my favorite characters in my Amish romances is Aunt Bitsy, the irrepressible, unconventional woman who raised the Honeybee Sisters, tried to chase off all their suitors, and then lit fireworks at their triple wedding. In Andrew, the first book in the Petersheim Brothers series, Aunt Bitsy takes in a girl who has jumped the fence and wants to come back to the Amish community to have her baby. Aunt Bitsy is still protecting her dandelions and her bees, still dyeing her hair all sorts of bright colors, and still praying to Gotte right out loud. 

Andrew is about forgiveness, second chances, and learning to love. It will have you laughing and crying, and you might just fall in love with two of the most mischievous little boys in Wisconsin. Enjoy. 

In honor of the Peanut Butter Brothers, I want to share one of our favorite family recipes. These bars are perfect for picnics, parties, and potlucks. They’re easy and delicious!    

Peanut Butter Bars  

Cream together:

1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar  

Blend In:

2 unbeaten eggs
1 tsp. baking soda
2/3 cup peanut butter
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla  

Stir In:

2 cups flour
2 cups quick oats  

Spread mixture in greased jelly-roll pan or large cookie sheet. Bake: 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Do not overbake. Remove from oven.    

Sprinkle on: 1 ¼ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips. Let stand five minutes.  

For peanut butter mixture on top, combine:

½ cup sifted powdered sugar
¼ cup peanut butter
2 to 4 Tbs. evaporated milk

Mix well. The chocolate chips will melt on the bars. Spread melted chocolate evenly. Drizzle peanut butter mixture on top. Cool completely. Cut into bars.


Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Jennifer is giving away a grand prize of a $20 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

The Avid Reader, June 26
Moments, June 26
Bigreadersite, June 29
Genesis 5020, July 1
Pause for Tales, July 3
Mary Hake, July 5
Splashesofjoy, July 5
Vicky Sluiter, July 5
Quiet Quilter, July 9

Spotlight + GIVEAWAY: The Second Yes by Chautona Havig



About the Book

Book: The Second Yes  
Author: Chautona Havig  
Genre: Fiction / Christian / Romance  
Release date: May 15, 2019

The Second Yes: Five of today’s Best-selling Christian Authors weave six brand-new, unique, interconnected stories of what happens after the bride says yes to him and yes to the dress.

Let’s face it. Weddings equal stress for the families involved. Preachers, however, have it easy. Or so they say.

Ty Jamison’s first parishioner is getting married. Though he’s performed many services at the little chapel in New Cheltenham–grand affairs, all designed to give the illusion of simplicity–all of them were strangers to him.

So when Lara Priest asks him to perform the ceremony at her wedding, and to use the chapel, of course, Ty is thrilled. That joy fades as one by one, things go wrong. From a groom who refuses to attend pre-marital counseling to Lara discovering that her dream wedding dress is a no-can-do, what can go wrong seems to. And like so many weddings that movies are made of, things go from bad to worse to “worser.” All the while, Ty tries to remind himself that he only has to provide a little premarital counseling, show up, perform the service, and find a way to hide his broken heart through the whole ordeal. All in a life’s work.

  Click here to purchase your copy.  


About the Author


Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours, and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her on the web and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

 

More from Chautona

The tiny bridal shop held dozens of dresses. Frothy princess dresses, twenties dropped-waist dresses, straight, short, silky, shiny satin, lace, beaded appliques… I looked at them all and found an ivory jacquard, tea length, dress by Jessica McClintock. It was a hundred dollars. To a girl making $4.25 an hour and too broke to buy food, it might as well have been a thousand. Still, it was also cheaper than any other dress in the store and just my style. 

I pulled out the twenty-dollars I’d saved by doing extra work around my apartment for the landlord and said I’d put it on layaway. 

My maid of honor protested. The dress wasn’t fancy enough. It didn’t reach the floor. It wasn’t white. I didn’t look good in ivory (she was right on that one, anyway), and the veil I’d fallen in love with—you know the $120 veil I could never afford—wouldn’t look good with it. 

Duh. Look, I was eighteen (barely), and had parents who would have paid me to elope in Las Vegas in lieu of the wedding. Two months later, we did go… And we still had the wedding, but that’s a story for another day. 

I left the store with my choice on layaway. Went home and later told my fiancé about the thing. He said to get the one I wanted. And I had. Still, I got the impression that he thought I actually wanted the other one… and maybe he meant that I should get that one. 

That left a conundrum. Did he like the sound of the other one more? Was that why? The traditional white and floor-length thing? I went back to the shop the next day to look again. Seriously, if we’d had cellphones back then, I would have taken a picture and asked him. 

That’s when I found out the white one was now on layaway—not the ivory I’d chosen. The decision had been made for me.

And so went the rest of my wedding planning.

I made one decision. It was countermanded as not grand enough, not traditional enough, too cheap, not enough… One decision, I’d made involved flowers. I called to ask about something after I’d ordered them and found they’d been changed to something else. I lost it—informed the florist that if any changes were not made in person with my driver’s license as proof of me making them, then when the wedding day came, if the flowers were wrong, I’d do without flowers. We wouldn’t have any. And I wouldn’t pay for them. 

I wish I’d have had the backbone to do more of that. But come on, I was eighteen. My mother didn’t have anything to do with wedding planning. They’d agreed to show up in whatever clothes we told them to, and that was it. 

Back to the dress. I think it’s important to note that I did love that white, floor-length dress. It was beautiful, it looked good on me, and it would make for lovely pictures. It would.

It just wasn’t what I’d chosen.

You see, I’d said “yes” to a dress—just not the one that I had agreed to pay for. Instead, it was the one that was almost four times the cost of the one I already couldn’t afford. 

I’d always planned to tell the story—fictionalized, of course—but I figured it would be about Rockland’s wedding planning company, “The Agency.” So, when it came time to do my book for the next Crossroads collection, The Second Yes, I was surprised to discover that elements of my own wedding kept cropping up in different ways. 

The motivation is different in Something Borrowed, Someone Blue, but the result is the same—a girl who, no matter what happens, can’t seem to have the wedding she envisions. 

The question is… is that a good thing?  


Giveaway




To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize that includes a Spa Basket designed to soothe any bride’s nerves (or to make any reader feel as though she is part of the bridal party and getting pampered before the big day) and also includes a $25 gift certificate to Amazon (Image not reflective of actual contents)!!

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

Monday, June 24, 2019

Review + GIVEAWAY: The Medallion by Cathy Gohlke



About the Book

Book: The Medallion  
Author: Cathy Gohlke  
Genre: Historical Fiction (World War II)  
Release date: June 4, 2019

For fans of bestselling World War II fiction like Sarah’s Key and The Nightingale comes an illuminating tale of courage, sacrifice, and survival, about two couples whose lives are ravaged by Hitler’s mad war yet eventually redeemed through the fate of one little girl. 

Seemingly overnight, the German blitzkrieg of Warsaw in 1939 turns its streets to a war zone and shatters the life of each citizen—Polish, Jewish, or otherwise. Sophie Kumiega, a British bride working in the city’s library, awaits news of her husband, Janek, recently deployed with the Polish Air Force. Though Sophie is determined that she and the baby in her womb will stay safe, the days ahead will draw her into the plight of those around her, compelling her to help, whatever the danger. 

Rosa and Itzhak Dunovich never imagined they would welcome their longed-for first child in the Jewish ghetto, or that they would let anything tear their family apart. But as daily atrocities intensify, Rosa soon faces a terrifying reality: to save their daughter’s life, she must send her into hiding. Her only hope of finding her after the war—if any of them survive—is a medallion she cuts in half and places around her neck. 

Inspired by true events of Poland’s darkest days and brightest heroes, The Medallion paints a stunning portrait of war and its aftermath, daring us to believe that when all seems lost, God can make a way forward.  

Click here to purchase your copy.  


My Thoughts


In the world of fiction, a novel by Cathy Gohlke is pure gold. Whether it’s set during the Civil War times like the most excellent William Henry Is a Fine Name, or during World War II as in her later novels, Gohlke’s characters envelop you into another era and help you see things in a unique and fresh way. When it comes to what Christian fiction strives to be, Cathy Gohlke is simply one of the very best of authors.

There’s no way any words of mine can do justice to The Medallion in a review, so I’ll just express some of my feelings. First of all, the basics … Gohlke’s writing is exquisite; historical detail is beyond impressive; characters are multilayered and complex; the story flows steadily and is hard impossible to put down. The Holocaust setting in Warsaw doesn’t make for an easy read, but it is compelling. Nothing is predictable and there are some fascinating twists. The Medallion earns top scores on an entertainment level alone.

Now for some subjective thoughts. The Medallion is basically the story of two couples – Sophie and Janek, Rosa and Itzhak – trying to survive during the Nazi occupation of Poland, but a lot of stories have been written with a similar theme. What elevates and sets this one apart? There’s rich historical detail, but it’s not primarily a historical novel. There’s tons of suspense, but it isn’t really a suspense novel. The Medallion doesn’t fit into any box that I can think of. Rather, it’s a story of everyday people – their courage, motivations, willingness to risk everything, and faith during one of the darkest times in history. In other words, ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

“Fear is an ungainly enemy. Give it a foothold
and it will control your life.”
– Pan Gadomski

I confess to not buying into society’s concept of “celebrity.” If things like Hollywood magazines and talk shows depended on people like me, they would disappear due to lack of interest. Rather, the true celebrities and stars are people like the characters in this story – people with the strength and grit to make impossibly heart-wrenching decisions and sacrifice regarding the safety of a child; people with a courage they never dreamed they possessed and a willingness to risk their very lives in order to help the helpless; people of faith who never lost sight of God’s presence during the darkest and most hopeless times of Hitler’s reign. The Medallion may be fiction, but it is inspired by factual accounts and we know the characters are drawn from real heroes during this devastating time.

No one can read The Medallion without being changed for the better. It will challenge you, make you look deep inside yourself. God's hand is clearly seen in this moving story of faith and hope. This a story that everyone should read. I’ll end with quote from Pan Bukowski that should minister to all of us:

“Remember the Red Sea …
Adonai makes a way when there is no way.”

Very highly recommended.

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


About the Author



      Three-time Christy and two-time Carol and INSPY Award–winning and bestselling author Cathy Gohlke writes novels steeped with inspirational lessons, speaking of world and life events through the lens of history. She champions the battle against oppression, celebrating the freedom found only in Christ. 
      Cathy has worked as a school librarian, drama director, and director of children’s and education ministries. When not traveling to historic sites for research, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, divide their time between northern Virginia and the Jersey Shore, enjoying time with their grown children and grandchildren. 
      Visit her website at www.cathygohlke.com and find her on Facebook at CathyGohlkeBooks.


More from Cathy

Every story begins with a journey. Sharing that journey is twice the joy. 

The Medallion was inspired by two true stories—the first was the WWII account of Itzhak Dugin and his Jewish family, persecuted in Lithuania. Their heart-wrenching story made world news when the tunnel from which Itzhak escaped the Nazis was discovered using modern technology. 

The second was the story of Irena Sendler, a Polish Catholic social worker within Żegota (an underground Polish Council to Aid Jews), who developed a network to rescue children. Despite terrible risks, they smuggled 2500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto and certain death at the hands of the Nazis, then hid them in Polish homes, convents, churches and hospitals until the end of the war. Approximately 2,000 of those children were found after the war. Theories abound regarding the whereabouts of those missing. I couldn’t help but wonder, and imagine: What became of those 400 to 500 missing children? What became of one? 

Set in WWII Poland and post-war England, The Medallion is a story of courage, sacrifice, love, forgiveness and redemption.  


Giveaway




To celebrate her tour, Cathy is giving away a grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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



Blog Stops

Mary Hake, June 23
By The Book, June 24
Remembrancy, June 26
The Becca Files, June 26
Genesis 5020, June 27
Bigreadersite, June 28
Simple Harvest Reads, July 1 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
Hallie Reads, July 3
Emily Yager, July 5

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Spotlight + #GIVEAWAY: Love's Truest Hope



About the Book

Book: Love’s Truest Hope  
Author: Laura V. Hilton, Rachel J. Good, Mary Alford  
Genre: Christian Fiction, Amish  
Release date: May 28, 2019    

Mission of Love

A nontraditional Amish man called to minister to the inner-city youth. An overwhelmed Amish woman terrified of the idea. When lies and manipulators threaten to destroy her life, she’s forced outside her comfort zone. Will she learn that God’s love spreads to more than just her people?  

Plain Redemption

Spring is a long way in coming to the Big Sky country of Montana, and Lyddie Hershberger is still living in the winter of her life. First her husband died a little more than a year earlier, then Lyddie lost their unborn child. Now, an accident sends her father-in-law to the hospital clinging to his life. Will the gloom of winter ever leave their West Kootenai community?

When word of his daed’s accident reaches Thomas Hershberger in Colorado, he rushes home to find all his old sins waiting for him there, along with the woman who destroyed his heart. His brother’s widow, Lyddie Hershberger. After someone breaks into the family home while Thomas and Lyddie are at the hospital, it soon becomes apparent that his father’s accident is anything but.

As Lyddie and Thomas struggle to understand why someone wishes their family harm, old feelings of love resurface. Is it possible for Thomas to overcome the guilt he feels for his part in his brother’s death and convince Lyddie that their love can melt any heartache standing in their way?  

Bid for Love

The top bidder in the Amish silent auction wins a day of yardwork from Marty and two of his friends. But why did this wealthy Englischer pay so much money when she has a professional lawn service? Marty is shocked to when she offers him money to turn her granddaughter Amish. He refuses, but when Olivia and her grandmother both end up missing, Marty is fingered for the crime. How can he ever prove his innocence when all the clues the police find point to his guilt?   Grab your copy here.  


About the Authors



Laura V. Hilton is an award-winning, sought-after author with thirty Amish, contemporary, and historical romances. When she’s not writing, she reviews books for her blogs. Her most recent series is set in Mackinac County, Michigan, and includes Firestorm, The Amish Candymaker, and Married to a Stranger (July 2019). Laura and her pastor-husband have five children and a hyper dog named Skye. They currently live in Arkansas. One son is in the U.S. Coast Guard. She is a pastor’s wife, and homeschools her two youngest children. When she’s not writing, Laura enjoys reading, and visiting lighthouses and waterfalls. Her favorite season is winter, her favorite holiday is Christmas.
 



Inspirational author Rachel J. Good writes life-changing, heart-tugging novels of faith, hope, and forgiveness. The bestselling author of several Amish romance series, she grew up near Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the setting for many of her stories. Striving to be as authentic as possible, she spends time with her Amish friends, doing chores on their farms and attending family events. Rachel has more than 40 books in print or forthcoming for both children and adults under several pen names.



Mary Alford is a bestselling author of over fifteen novels who loves giving her readers the unexpected. Combining unforgettable characters with unpredictable plots that test their faith and result in novels the reader doesn’t want to put down.  


Giveaway



To celebrate the tour, Celebrate Lit is giving away a grand prize of an eBook copy of Love’s Truest Hope and 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

Friday, June 21, 2019

Review + GIVEAWAY: Cross My Heart by Robin Lee Hatcher



Welcome to the Blog Tour & Giveaway for Cross My Heart by Robin Lee Hatcher, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!


ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: Cross My Heart  
Series: Legacy of Faith #2 
Author: Robin Lee Hatcher  
Publisher: Thomas Nelson 
Release Date: June 25, 2019  
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Split Timeline

Can two broken paths lead toward God’s redemption?

When Ashley Showalter and Ben Henning meet on Ashley’s horse rescue farm, they quickly discover how much they have in common. Both were raised by single moms. Both want to help where they see a need. And both work with horses in the Boise valley. Ben needs Ashley’s help and expertise after starting an equine therapy barn on his great-great-grandfather’s farm—and the more time they spend together, both Ashley and Ben have the feeling that there could be something more between them.

They also carry the burden of past experiences that may drive them apart if the truth is ever revealed. Ben is a recovering alcoholic with five years of sobriety behind him, while Ashley’s brother is an opioid addict residing in court-ordered rehab. Holding fast to the belief that addicts can never be cured, Ashley has promised herself she will never walk knowingly into the chaos created by addiction. Ben knows that with God, all things are possible—but will Ashley find it within herself to give love a chance? Or will her brother’s mistakes and the pain of her past jeopardize her future with Ben?

Cross My Heart threads together a contemporary love story with the heartwarming tale of Ben’s great-great-grandfather, Andrew Henning—reminding us that God’s Word is timeless and that His promises are new every morning.


PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | ChristianBook



MY THOUGHTS

There’s just something special about the writing of Robin Lee Hatcher, and Cross My Heart continues the trend of spiritually uplifting stories with rich, complex characterization and emotional depth. This story of addiction, grace and redemption moves at a steady pace that allowed me to be enveloped in the rural Idaho setting and life of Ben and Ashley, as well as Andrew and Helen of generations past. Although number 2 in the series, this story easily stands alone.

Hatcher excels at crafting stories that entertain while conveying a relevancy through situations and struggles that connects with all readers in some way. Ben is a recovering alcoholic who knows the grace of God firsthand, resulting in a peace, steadiness, and certainty of purpose. Ashley has been touched by addiction through her brother and is understandably guarded, trying to “fix” or control everything in her life by herself. The physical, emotional and spiritual connection between these two propels the storyline in a most satisfying way.

Horses make great heroes and the field of equine therapy – broken horses helping broken people – is fascinating. Ben’s response to Ashley’s question as to why he wanted to open an equine therapy barn simply conveys it all … “The short answer to your question is God told me that’s what I’m supposed to do with the farm. Make it a place where spirits get healed and hope gets restored through the use of horses.”

Faith themes are a natural part of the story, just as they should be. The “Legacy of Faith” series title is reflective of the overarching theme of a legacy of faith, exemplified in Andrew Henning’s Bible. The story of Andrew and Helen Henning in the 1940s during World War II is continued as two sons enter into the fighting, and his sustaining faith is shared when the current possessor of his heirloom Bible feels spiritually led to pass it on to another family member.

Whether it be with animals or humans, rescue, healing, recovery, and the gaining/giving of trust is a slow process, and I appreciated how the reality of this process is conveyed. Cross My Heart is a wonderfully engaging story of forgiveness, healing, second chances, letting go of and not being defined by our past. I really can’t say enough good things about this story.

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


Robin Lee Hatcher 

Robin Lee Hatcher is the author of 80 novels and novellas with over five million copies of her books in print. She is known for her heartwarming and emotionally charged stories of faith, courage, and love.

Her numerous awards include the RITA® Award, the Carol Award, the Christy Award, the HOLT Medallion, the National Reader’s Choice Award, and the Faith, Hope & Love Reader’s Choice Award. Robin is also the recipient of prestigious Lifetime Achievement Awards from both American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America®.

When not writing, she enjoys being with her family, spending time in the beautiful Idaho outdoors, Bible art journaling, reading books that make her cry, watching romantic movies, and decorative planning. Robin makes her home on the outskirts of Boise, sharing it with a demanding Papillon dog and a persnickety tuxedo cat.

CONNECT WITH ROBIN:  Website | Facebook  | Twitter



TOUR GIVEAWAY


(1) winner will receive Book 1 & 2 of Robin Lee Hatcher's LEGACY OF FAITH series (US only) - Who I Am With You & Cross My Heart

Copy the following phrase to claim your bonus entries for this stop:

"The Lord is enthroned as King forever" (Psalm 29:10) 

Giveaway_CrossMyHeart_JR

Each host on the tour (excluding the launch pages) has a "timeless" verse or phrase for you to enter on the Rafflecopter form for bonus entries!

Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight June 21, 2019 and last through 11:59 PM EST on June 28, 2019. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

 

 
Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
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*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Review + GIVEAWAY: The Pink Bonnet by Liz Tolsma



About the Book

Book: The Pink Bonnet  
Author: Liz Tolsma  
Genre: Christian Historical, Suspense  
Release date: June, 2019  

A Desperate Mother Searches for Her Child  

Step into True Colors—a new series of Historical Stories of Romance and American Crime 

Widowed in Memphis during 1932, Cecile Dowd is struggling to provide for her three-year-old daughter. Unwittingly trusting a neighbor puts little Millie Mae into the clutches of Georgia Tann, corrupt Memphis Tennessee Children’s Home Society director suspected of the disappearance of hundreds of children. With the help of a sympathetic lawyer, the search for Millie uncovers a deep level of corruption that threatens their very lives. 

How far will a mother go to find out what happened to her child?

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My Thoughts


Liz Tolsma has written an impressive novel in the True Colors: Historical Stories of American Crime series. I have read some, but not all, of Tolsma’s previous books because they have dealt with the Holocaust. While she is an excellent writer and handles that subject in a compelling way, I just have a hard time reading stories in that setting, so I was excited to try this one. Although still not a subject easy to read about, Tolsma has written a fascinating story that combines fiction with real-life events. I was engaged emotionally from page one of this action-packed story and could hardly put it down.

The Pink Bonnet reads like a wonderful suspense thriller, until it sinks in that it is based on historical true crime – the story of Georgia Tann, who ran a Memphis adoption agency from 1924 to 1950; then it becomes chilling and haunting. Children she perceived to be from inadequate homes or parenting situations were literally stolen and given to families who could pay well. Even those who were supposed to care – politicians and others in authoritative positions – were corrupt and easily bribed to turn a blind eye. That this could go on for 25 years is horrifying.

Into this backdrop we meet Cecile Dowd, a young widow with the odds stacked against her, struggling to care for her three- year-old daughter Millie. Cecile is a loving mother and making things work out, when suddenly she is betrayed by a “concerned” neighbor and Millie falls into the hands of Georgia Tann. Cecile and Millie are characters every reader will be drawn to, so easy to connect with. And then there’s Percy, a lawyer working with Tann, who begins to suspect that all is not right with this adoption agency. I loved the connection between Cecile and Percy, a sweet and growing relationship in an otherwise dark story. I also appreciated the spiritual overtones of God’s unrelenting seeking for us.

The Pink Bonnet is a riveting, suspense-filled story that drove me to do some online research into this crime. I look forward to much more of Liz Tolsma’s writing.

Recommended.

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

About the Author

  
      Liz Tolsma is a popular speaker and an editor and the owner of the Write Direction Editing. 
      An almost-native Wisconsinite, she resides in a quiet corner of the state with her husband and is the mother of three. Her son proudly serves as a U.S. Marine. They adopted all of their children internationally, and one has special needs. 
     When she gets a few spare minutes, she enjoys reading, relaxing on the front porch, walking, working in her large perennial garden, and camping with her family.


More from Liz

A Desperate Mother Searches for Her Child

True, riveting stories of American criminal activity are explored through 6 unique stories of historical romantic suspense in the exciting new True Colors series. 

In book two, The Pink Bonnet, Widowed in Memphis during 1932, Cecile Dowd is struggling to provide for her three-year-old daughter. Unwittingly trusting a neighbor puts little Millie Mae into the clutches of Georgia Tann, corrupt Memphis Tennessee Children’s Home Society director suspected of the disappearance of hundreds of children. With the help of a sympathetic lawyer, the search for Millie uncovers a deep level of corruption that threatens their very lives. 

How far will a mother go to find out what happened to her child? Find out in The Pink Bonnet by Liz Tolsma. 

The True Crime Behind the Story 

Georgia Tann was a woman who ran an adoption agency in Memphis, Tennessee, from 1924 until 1950. It is estimated that, in that time, she kidnapped over five thousand children and sold them to the highest bidder. She even advertised the children in the newspaper, especially around the holidays. Some of the nation’s biggest celebrities adopted through Miss Tann, including Joan Crawford, Dick Powell, and June Allyson. Learn more about Georgia Tann HERE and visit www.TrueColorsCrime.com for more exclusive content.


Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Liz is giving away a grand prize that includes a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of The Pink Bonnet!! 

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 Becca Files, June 20
Livin’ Lit, June 20
Mary Hake, June 23
Moments, June 24
Remembrancy, June 26
Emily Yager, June 26
Genesis 5020, June 27
Changed by Him, June 28
Bigreadersite, June 28
Pause for Tales, June 29
Hallie Reads, June 30
By The Book, July 2
amandainpa, July 3