Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Review: Goodbye Cruller World

Goodbye Cruller World
By Ginger Bolton
Deputy Donut Series #2
Kensington, 2018


Named after her beloved tabby, Deputy Donut, Emily Westhill's donut shop in small-town Fallingbrook, Wisconsin, is doing so well, she's expanding into catering weddings. But a killer is about to crash the reception . . .

Normally, Emily's eyes tend to glaze over when prospective brides go on about their wedding plans. But when the owner of the clothing shop, Dressed to Kill, asks Emily to design a donut wall for her reception, she's immediately sweet on the idea. With the help of her father-in-law and business partner--the former police chief of Fallingbrook--she hangs the treats from dowels on the wall so guests can help themselves.

But that night, when the groom ends up on the floor with signs of poisoning, Emily suspects someone has tampered with her treats. When the groom dies, there's no way to sugarcoat it: she's got a murder on her hands. Despite a list of suspects as long as the guest list, Emily vows to find out who created the killer confection to save her shop's reputation and keep the bride out of handcuffs. She'll have to move fast . . . before the poisoner takes a powder.


My thoughts

Goodbye Cruller World – honestly, who comes up with these crazy titles? – is a delightful read that, for me, really hit the spot for a relaxing cozy mystery. This is book #2 in the Deputy Donut series, set in the quaint small town of Fallingbrook, Wisconsin. The setting is great, and the only thing I could ask for is descriptive passages that create a more vivid sense of place. I also enjoyed the previous book, Survival of the Fritters (click on title to see my review), and hope that Emily’s neighbor, Lois, will be featured in future books.

Emily is so very likeable as a lead character, realistic and someone I would enjoy having as a friend. There’s a complexity and sadness as she continues to deal with the death of her husband some years ago, and she is surrounded by a great network of family and friends. That network includes law enforcement officials, giving credibility to her reason for investigating. I especially enjoyed the growing friendship between Emily and police detective Brent, and am pulling for further development soon.

The Deputy Donut shop, co-owned by Emily and her father-in law, is hired to make a donut wall for a friend’s wedding reception – such a fun and creative idea! The number of suspects is exactly right, enough to keep readers guessing, but not too numerous to keep straight. And I can’t leave without mentioning lead detective, DCI Detective Yvonne Passenmath (present in the previous book also). I just don’t like her, she has no redeeming qualities, but I guess she does add conflict to the storyline. However, with her penchant for assessing blame based on her negative personal feelings, I wonder how she achieved her rank. It would be great if she disappeared from the series altogether!

The “icing on the cake” for me is that Goodbye Cruller World is a clean read, which I greatly appreciate. And I absolutely adore Emily’s cat, Dep, who adds so much richness to these stories. There’s plenty of room for further character development and I look forward to Emily’s next adventure.

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


Ginger Bolton writes the Deputy Donut mystery series –cops, crime, coffee, donuts and one curious cat.

When Ginger isn’t writing or reading, she’s crocheting, knitting, sewing, walking her two rescue dogs and generally causing trouble. She’s also fond of donuts, coffee, and cafes were folks gather to enjoy those tasty treats and one another’s company.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: Mourning Dove by Claire Fullerton

Mourning Dove blog tour

Welcome to the blog tour & giveaway for Mourning Dove by Claire Fullerton, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!


mourning dove Title: Mourning Dove  
Author: Claire Fullerton
Publisher: Firefly Southern Fiction  
Release Date: June 29, 2018  
Genre: Southern Fiction, Family Life  

"An accurate and heart-wrenching picture of the sensibilities of the American South." Kirkus Book Reviews

The heart has a home when it has an ally.

If Millie Crossan doesn't know anything else, she knows this one truth simply because her brother Finley grew up beside her. Charismatic Finley, eighteen months her senior, becomes Millie's guide when their mother Posey leaves their father and moves her children from Minnesota to Memphis shortly after Millie's tenth birthday.

Memphis is a world foreign to Millie and Finley. This is the 1970s Memphis, the genteel world of their mother's upbringing and vastly different from anything they've ever known. Here they are the outsiders. Here, they only have each other. And here, as the years fold over themselves, they mature in a manicured Southern culture where they learn firsthand that much of what glitters isn't gold. Nuance, tradition, and Southern eccentrics flavor Millie and Finley's world as they find their way to belonging.

But what hidden variables take their shared history to leave both brother and sister at such disparate ends?

 PURCHASE: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository


Haven’t you noticed the name of the game
around here is what everybody thinks?
You’re only as good as how others consider you.”
- Finley

I love a “different” type of book when it is done well, and Claire Fullerton has achieved exactly that in Mourning Dove. Fullerton’s fresh voice, sense of place, and exquisite writing make this story shine. Creative storytelling reads somewhat like a memoir as life events cause the now-grown Millie to reflect back over her childhood and growing up years, especially as they relate to her brother, Finley. This evocative and poignant story that explores the relationships within the dysfunctional Crossan family captured me from the very first page and never let go.

One normally thinks of people as main characters, but 1970s Memphis is the overarching character around which all else revolves. Mourning Dove is southern to the core, and Fullerton evokes the setting and mores like no one else I’ve ever read. Having lived in the south all my life, there is so much I can relate to. For instance, the southern accent that “operates at lightening speed, and doesn't feel the need for enunciation. Instead, it trips along the lines of implication." And this descriptive passage truly captures the essence of Memphis and southern upper echelons…

It was magnolia-lined and manicured, black-tailed and bow-tied. It glittered in illusory gold and tinkled in sing-song voices. It was cloistered, segregated, and well-appointed, the kind of place where everyone monogrammed their initials on everything from hand towels to silver because nothing mattered more than one’s family and to whom they were connected by lineage that traced through the fertile fields of the Mississippi Delta.

Through Millie’s eyes and voice, we see the close bond between Millie and Finley, a gifted musician with a high intellect – and how a self-absorbed mother and absent alcoholic father affected their lives. It was a time where appearance mattered above all else, with true feelings and emotions well hidden. Posey, the mom, is fascinating – not the most likeable of characters, yet with a vulnerability that touched me. I loved Millie’s expressive thoughts: “I never saw her admit to the complete gamut of emotions inherent in all of mankind, and I thought it was because not all of them played well on her stage. I often wondered if she even possessed unattractive emotions, or if they’d shriveled up and died from lack of use.”

I loved the depth, complexity and realism of Mourning Dove. It’s raw at times, and the unfolding theme of a hero worshipped revealing feet of clay is something to which we can all relate. The seeking of God in different ways, never a "one-size-fits-all" experience, plays an essential part.

Intrigued by the title, I looked up “mourning dove” and discovered how the meaning encompasses the essence of this story: “Their distinctivewooo-oo-oo-oo sounds may evoke a feeling of grief over the loss of a dearly beloved. But far from representing death, the symbolism of mourning doves gives optimism with its spirituality. Beyond their sorrowful song is a message of life, hope, renewal and peace.

Mourning Dove is a classic story that will stay with me for a long time. Highly recommended.


2 Claire LvgRm 3 set 2 828 465 360-1010730

Claire Fullerton grew up in Memphis, TN and now lives in Malibu, CA. She is the author of contemporary fiction, “Dancing to an Irish Reel,” set in Connemara, Ireland, where she once lived. Dancing to an Irish Reel is a finalist in the 2016 Kindle Book Review Awards, and a 2016 Readers’ Favorite. 

Claire is the author of “A Portal in Time,” a paranormal mystery that unfolds in two time periods, set on California’s hauntingly beautiful Monterey Peninsula, in a village called Carmel-by-the-Sea. Both of those novels are published by Vinspire Publishing. 

Her third novel, Mourning Dove, is a Southern family saga, published in June 2018 by Firefly Southern Fiction. She is one of four contributors to the book, A Southern Season, with her novella, Through an Autumn Window, to be published in November 2018 by Firefly Southern Fiction.  

CONNECT WITH CLAIRE: website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram

Mourning Dove blog tour giveaway


Claire Fullerton is giving away:
  • 1 audiobook of Mourning Dove (US only)
Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight August 21, 2018 and last through 11:59pm August 28, 2018. US 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 with the tour at JustRead for a full list of stops!


Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: Argosy Junction by Chautona Havig

About the Book

Book Title: Argosy Junction  
Author: Chautona Havig  
Genre: Christian Fiction/Romance  
Release date: 1st edition: March 11, 2010 ; 2nd edition: August, 2018  

I want nothing to do with Jesus or God.” 

After over twenty years of abuses from the cult-like church she grew up in, Lane Argosy has had it with God and His people. Though the Brethren try to make Lane and her family’s lives unbearable, freedom from their warped brand of Christianity is sweet. She’ll never go back… never. 

He just wanted to visit the country he’d explored through books. So, when Matt Rushby arrives in Argosy Junction, Montana, he expects idyllic meadows and craggy rocks towering above, old-fashioned friendliness and at least one or two cowboys. Instead, he finds familiar hatred and factions very much like the ones back home in Rockland’s inner-city gangs. 

The Argosy family is disillusioned, broken, and floundering. Matt knows the answer is Jesus—just Him and not the trappings of a faith He never designed. 

But how can Matt help them turn their hearts back to the Lord when he suspects Lane has stolen his?


My Thoughts

I appreciate how, while keeping us entertained, Chautona Havig is always able to focus on current and relevant topics in a way that readers can relate to, and Argosy Junction does exactly that. It is a book of contrasts, with one of those contrasts being the wide-open landscape of Montana vs. inner city life. But while the physical differences in the areas are huge, we see that human nature is very similar.

The initial meeting between Matt and Lane is so very funny, one that I don’t think I’ll ever forget. I found Matt absolutely endearing. Seeing a character evolve as the story unfolds is my favorite thing, and Lane’s previous cult experience gave her a hardness that just begged for transformation. I also adored Lane’s 9-year-old sister, Patience, whose name would take some growing into.

The beliefs and attitude of the cult members, known as the Brethren, is very relevant as its effects on family and community are shown. I particularly enjoyed the background of how it gradually developed within the rural community, told through an e-mail to Matt from Lane’s father. Argosy Junction vividly reflects the contrast between rules and a personal relationship, between legalism and grace. Matt’s faith simply points people to Jesus, a Savior who welcomes all. Seeing the ministry of Matt’s church in the inner city made me think of the words from a song that I love, “Come ye sinners, poor and needy…Jesus ready, stands to save you.”

My only thought is that it’s a long book; some trimming and tightening of narrative would have greatly helped advance the plot. Argosy Junction is an inspirational and enjoyable read overall, with much to reflect upon.

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

About the Author

The author of dozens of books in a variety of genres, Chautona Havig lives and writes in California’s Mojave Desert where she uses story to nudge her readers to the feet of the Master Storyteller.

Guest Post from Chautona

What Do You Do When the Church Becomes Toxic?

You know how TV shows and movies like to make fun of bridezillas? 

Yeah. I know. It can be funny. 

But bridezillas aren’t just those gals on reality shows. They’re all over the church, too. People who allow their focus to get off the Bridegroom and onto “their day.” Instead of focusing on the One who loves them so dearly, Who has rescued them from the gutter and holds them close and tenderly, they focus on getting all the trappings right. The right wording, the right clothes, the right rules of… 


So many friendships have been ruined by a bride gone wild—so focused on details that she forgets the people she hopes will celebrate it with her. She forgets her groom. Unreasonable expectations of the day and of people lead to broken relationships and an ugly taint to what should be a beautiful occasion. 

What I find interesting is that people will forgive a lot from a bridezilla. You hear things like, “Well, it’s such a stressful time,” or “She’ll come around after she settles in.”

And it’s true.

So, why don’t we have the same grace for the “bridezillas” of the church? When that deacon decides to become judge and jury of people’s spiritual state based upon what he thinks or knows someone has contributed to the church, why do we write off him and the rest of the congregation (or all congregations out there)? When the church gossip shares private information… or even false information, why do we lash out with thinly-veiled, passive-aggressive rants on Facebook about brutes in the church before flouncing off in a spiritually-superior rejection of that “religious nightmare, otherwise known as the church?” (Yes, I’ve heard it called that). 

When we’re blackballed by people who used to call us family, why do we reject all parts of the bride? Why do we cut off an arm, a leg, a hand, and whack away from the body known as Jesus’ bride until only a piece of an eyelash is left—us? 

I get it. The bride of Christ gets ugly—like many bridezillas do. But do we love our Groom? Do we trust that He will stay faithful to us even when parts of our body fails us? When we get old, frail, and forgetful, will He remember us? Will He stay faithful and true when we wander to other loves? Can we trust that? 

If Jesus can die for that person in the pew across the way, if He can forgive their sins, if He can forgive your sins, can’t you forgive His beloved?

Look, I get it. Sometimes part of the body of Christ becomes ill—gangrenous. Toxic.

When that happens, you need to remove yourself before you become ill, too. I get that. But that local body is just a tiny finger or toe of the whole body. We need to do what we can to help the rest of the body stay healthy while we pray and do what we can to help the sick part. 

And I’m not condoning sin. Please understand that. This isn’t about me saying, “It doesn’t matter if the church sins against us. It does. It’s why Jesus gave us a way to deal with that. 

But regardless of how someone else behaves, we still have to do what’s right. And I Peter 4:8 reminds us that “Love covers a multitude of sins.” 

If you thought I’d wax eloquent about how evil the church is, how we should just abolish the “institution,” and why it’s just so bad… 

You’ll be disappointed. I won’t do it.

So, What Do You Do When the Church Becomes Toxic?

I can answer the question in a word. 


And really, that’s all Matt does in this book. Loves. Okay, and maybe a little prayerful ranting as well.  
It’s what Jesus did when His creation—you and me—when we became toxic. He loved. 

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” John 13:34


To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize package that includes a paperback copy of Argosy Junction, “Matt’s” copy of Shakespeare’s Sonnets, and a $25 gift certificate!!

Click the image above or the link below to enter.

Blog Stops

Monday, August 6, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: Darkwater Secrets by Robin Caroll

Darkwater Secrets blog tour

Welcome to the blog tour & giveaway for Darkwater Secrets by Robin Caroll, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!


darkwater secrets Title: Darkwater Secrets
Author: Robin Caroll
Publisher: Gilead Publishing  
Release Date: July 17, 2018  
Genre: Inspirational Romantic Suspense  

A murder investigation uncovers sordid secrets and haunting mistakes...

The Darkwater Inn stands tall and proud in the French Quarter, the hub of New Orleans. Bourbon Street is bustling, and General Manager Adelaide Fountaine has her hands full with a hotel at capacity. She, along with everyone else, is shocked when a body is found: a hotel guest stabbed with a kitchen knife.

Detective Beau Savoie, Adelaide’s childhood friend, is on the case. As Beau digs into the victim’s past, he unearths a shocking connection between Adelaide and the murdered guest. Beau is hurt that his friend—the woman he’s quietly loved for years—kept the truth from him. To make matters worse, the stress of the investigation has sent Adelaide right into the comforting arms of her coworker Dimitri. But Beau can’t press Adelaide too hard . . . he’s keeping secrets of his own.

Can Adelaide and Beau afford to hide from the truth with a killer on the loose?  

PURCHASE: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | CBD | Book Depository

My Thoughts...

Darkwater Secrets by Robin Caroll is outstanding in every way, one of my favorite reads of the year. It’s a creative blend of romantic suspense, police procedural, and the character-driven novel, extremely well written from different viewpoints. I was completely hooked from the very first page and never wanted to put it down.

From characters to setting, the color of the French Quarter is reflected. There’s a certain mystique about New Orleans that I find fascinating, and Ms. Caroll beautifully conveyed the very essence of this area – its mood, architecture, food, and even the practice of voodoo.

The story revolves around three main characters – Beau, Adelaide, and Dimitri. All are well drawn and appealing. Adelaide is general manager of the Darkwater Inn, Dimitri a talented chef, and Beau leads the murder investigation. I’m not a fan of romantic triangles, but the author handles this in a way that captured me emotionally and I look forward to seeing how this element plays out in future stories.

Faith is also a quiet, but realistic theme that is easy for readers to connect with. Adelaide believes in God, but past experience has made her a non-follower. The age-old question of why a loving God would allow pain and suffering is explored in a thoughtful way. Another theme, as the title indicates, is the personal effects of burying past secrets.

Darkwater Secrets is an impressive novel. Romantic suspense isn’t my favorite genre, but the complexity, relational depth, and multilayering raises it to another level. I also enjoyed how the focus was on the murder investigation rather than suspense; in other words, it wasn’t too scary for me. The conclusion is satisfying, with the promise of much more to come. I am so eager for the next release in this series!

Highly recommended.

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


Gilead Publishing is hosting a Darkwater Secrets Mystery Party on Facebook August 14th from 7-9pm CST: https://www.facebook.com/events/220942041956118/

Co-hosts include: Colleen Coble, DiAnn Mills, Cara Putnam, Carrie Stuart Parks, and of course, Robin Caroll.

Giveaways open for 24 hours after the event, if you can't attend for all the action!


robin caroll

“I love boxing. I love Hallmark movies. I love fishing. I love scrapbooking. Nope, I’ve never fit into the boxes people have wanted to put me in.” ~Robin Caroll is definitely a contradiction, but one that beckons you to get to know her better.

Born and raised in Louisiana, Robin is a southerner through and through. Her passion has always been to tell stories to entertain others.

When she isn’t writing, Robin spends time with her husband of twenty-five-plus years, her three beautiful daughters and two handsome grandsons, and their character-filled pets at home—in the South, where else?

She serves the writing community as Executive Director/Conference Director for ACFW. Her twenty-five books have finaled/placed in such contests as the Carol Award, Holt Medallion, Daphne du Maurier, RT Reviewer’s Choice Award, Bookseller’s Best, and Book of the Year.

CONNECT WITH ROBIN: website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

darkwater secrets blog giveaway


Enter for your chance to win:
  • print copy of Darkwater Secrets
  • your own key to the Darkwater Inn
  • a soy-based, French Quarter candle
Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight August 6, 2018 and last through 11:59pm August 13, 2018. US 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 JustRead Tours for the full schedule & more chances to win!

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: Knot My Sister's Keeper by Mary Marks

Knot My Sister’s Keeper
By Mary Marks
A Quilting Mystery #6
Kensington, 2018


In tracing her ancestry, quilter Martha Rose discovers a ritzy half-sister, a stash of family secrets, and a decades-old mystery that only she can unravel . . .

Martha Rose is shocked to find she has a half-sister, especially one so different from her. Giselle Cole is wealthy, widowed, and lives a glamorous life in West Los Angeles. At least her grandmother was a quilter! But Giselle can’t answer Martha’s many questions about their father—he disappeared when she was only a child and the few clues left behind indicate he may have been murdered. So Martha and Giselle team up on an investigation that weaves them through the streets of L.A., their father’s hidden love affairs, and into some mysterious unfinished Cole family business . . .

Amazon    B&N    Google Play     kobo     BookBub

My thoughts

Knot My Sister’s Keeper is not only the best book in this series, but one of the best cozy mysteries I’ve ever read. The writing is tight and moves at a steady pace, there’s a richness and complexity to the narrative, and most importantly, the storyline has an emotional appeal. This is a clean story overall, with no profanity or explicit scenes, but some couples do live together. Although sixth in the series, this book works well as a standalone.

The series regulars have small parts this time and the spotlight is on Martha Rose here. The discovery of her father’s identity, possibly a cold-case murder, and the existence of a half-sister who was a child when her father disappeared drive the narrative. The sister, Giselle, seemingly couldn’t be more different from Martha, and she’s one of those outspoken people with no filter. Her opinions, misconceptions and prejudices drive Martha crazy, but let me just say that Martha can hold her own. Giselle grew on me as I got to know her when she and Martha teamed up to investigate.

Another theme that I really loved was Martha’s Jewish heritage. In previous books, not much was revealed except that she was Jewish, but here we see faith elements played out in Martha’s life through Jewish dietary restrictions, customs, rituals, and Sabbath celebration. This added depth to Martha’s character as I got to know her better.

Knot My Sister’s Keeper is an outstanding story, one of my very favorite cozy mysteries. Highly recommended.

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


Born and raised in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area, Mary Marks earned a B.A. in Anthropology from UCLA and an M.A. in Public Administration from the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. In 2004 she enrolled in the UCLA Extension Writers Program.

Her first novel, Forget Me Knot, was a finalist in a national writing competition in 2011. She is currently a reviewer of cozy mysteries for The New York Journal of Books at www.nyjournalofbooks.com.

Website Facebook


Friday, August 3, 2018

Review + Tour GIVEAWAY: A Promise Forged by Cara Putman

About the Book

Book Title: A Promise Forged  
Author: Cara Putman  
Genre: World War 2 Romance  
Release date: Originally released in 2010, Re-released in 2017

Kat transformed in front of him. Her chin came up, her fingers stopped twitching with the fabric of her gown, and a real sparkle bubbled in her eyes. It was like watching Snow White come to life when the prince kissed her. 

A heartwarming WWII historical from award-winning author Cara Putman: 

Kat Miller has dreamed of playing baseball her entire life. When she earns a spot on a team in the All-American Girls Professional Softball League, she finds that things aren’t as glamorous as she imagined. She struggles with long road trips, grueling practices, and older teammates who are jealous of her success. And to top it all off, an irritating reporter is constantly getting under Kat’s skin. 

Events in Jack Raymond’s career have left him cynical and distanced from God. He never wanted to write at a small paper, and he certainly didn’t want to be assigned to something as inconsequential as a women’s softball team. Then Kat walks into his life. The fiery, young softball player somehow climbs the walls around his heart and makes him want to hope again. 

When lies fly and the league appears to fail, will Kat and Jack’s new love survive?


My Thoughts

“Never forget that you’re here to show us women can play like 
men, while never letting us forget that you’re women.”
- Philip Wrigley

Cara Putman certainly knows how to tell an engaging story, and I enjoyed A Promise Forged very much. The story has unusual character depth for a novella, and beautifully combines history, romance, and spiritual elements. Although not a sports fan, I found the backdrop of women’s baseball during the WWII years intriguing. From tryouts, to competition between teams, to jealousy among players, to the politics involved, Putman does a great job conveying what that time period was like. I had heard of women’s baseball, but didn’t realize the idea originated with Mr. Wrigley.

Jack and Kat have a good chemistry between them, although I’m not sure my mom would have approved of the age difference. At 25, Jack’s goal was to be a reporter for a large newspaper, and resented his assignment of covering the women’s baseball league – especially as this was an experiment with no guarantee of success. All Kat wants to do is play a sport that she loves professionally, and the first season begins during the summer before her senior year in high school.

What I loved most about their relationship is how they so beautifully met each other’s needs. Jack believed in Kat’s ability and was her encourager. And Jack’s weakness of spiritual faith was countered by Kat’s quiet confidence and peace about God’s plans, whether it be women’s softball or something entirely different. I know this story had to end, but I’d love to see the development of their relationship through the next few years.


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

About the Author

Since the time she could read Nancy Drew, Cara has wanted to write mysteries. In 2005 she attended a book signing at her local Christian bookstore. The rest, as they say, was history. There she met a fellow Indiana writer Colleen Coble. With prompting from her husband, Cara shared her dream with Colleen. Since those infamous words, Cara’s been writing award-winning books. She is currently working on book 30 and 31. 

Cara Putman is an active member of ACFW, and currently serves on its Executive Board. She has also been the Indiana ACFW chapter president and served as the Area Coordinator for Indiana. 

Cara is also an attorney, lecturer at a Big Ten university, active in women’s ministry, and all around crazy woman. Crazy about God, her husband and her kids that is. She graduated with honors from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Go Huskers!) and George Mason Law School, and Krannert School of Management. You can learn more about Cara at www.caraputman.com <http://www.caraputman.com/>.

Guest Post from Cara

Each of my books starts with a hook that engages my interest, and then as I play with it, I think it will engage readers. A Promise Forged was no different. For this book I was writing a series of three World War II novels for Barbour. I already had two historical hooks that fascinated me: children evacuated from London to Ohio, a top secret project to break Engima in Dayton, but I needed one more. I knew the lead characters were going to be siblings, but I wasn’t sure what to do with the kid sister. Then I remembered the All-American Girls Professional Softball/Baseball League. 

And I started thinking. 

What would it have been like to desperately want a chance to play a sport you loved professionally? 

And to be part of the nascent league when no one was sure whether it was a good or bad idea? 

I decided that was the perfect place for Kat. She was the kid sister with fire and passion. She wanted a chance to prove herself, and this would be the perfect place. Then she needed a hero worthy of her. One who could go toe-to-toe with her and still see who she could be. 

He came in the form of Jack, a cynical reporter who is disappointed to be assigned to cover girls’ baseball. But then he gets to know Kat and some of the others. And he sees something in her that she doesn’t see in herself. It’s the beginning of fireworks that he doesn’t think can go anywhere because she has to go home to her senior year of high school. 

As I began researching the history of the league, I learned that the AAGPS/BL archives were kept at a small museum in South Bend, a couple hours from where I live. I spent a day there talking with the curator and exploring all the records. Because the league wasn’t expected to last there weren’t many records from the first year. That meant I had to guess about some things like schedules based on what happened in the years after. 

A Promise Forged became a book I loved writing. Kat was feisty, Jack was cynical, and baseball provided a great setting. I can’t believe this football loving woman can admit that!


To celebrate her tour, Cara is giving away a grand prize that includes the movie League of Their Own, a box of cracker jacks, M&Ms and a $20 Amazon gift card!! 

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! 

To enter, click on the image above or the link below...

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, August 4
C Jane Read, August 5
Genesis 5020, August 6
Carpe Diem, August 7
Mary Hake, August 8
By The Book, August 9
Simple Harvest Reads, August 9 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)
Lighthouse Academy, August 10
Remembrancy, August 10
100 Pages per Hour, August 11
Bigreadersite, August 11
Godly Book Reviews, August 12
Cafinated Reads, August 12
A Reader’s Brain, August 13
Book by Book, August 13
All-of-a-kind Mom, August 14
amandainpa, August 15
Pause for Tales, August 17