Monday, November 29, 2010

Emily of Deep Valley by Mitali Perkins

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Emily of Deep Valley
Harper Perennial Modern Classics; Reprint edition (October 12, 2010)
by
Mitali Perkins






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



A word from Mitali: Who In The World Is Mitali Perkins?



That's a good question. I've been trying to figure it out myself, spending most of my life crossing borders.



I was born Mitali Bose in Kolkata (Calcutta), India, and always tried to live up to my name—which means “friendly” in the Bangla language. I had to! Because my family moved so much, it was the only way I could make new friends.



By the time I was 11, I'd lived in Ghana, Cameroon, London, New York and Mexico before settling in California just in time for middle school. Yep, I was the new kid again, in seventh grade, the year everybody barely makes it through.



My biggest lifeline during those early years was story. Books were my rock, my stability, my safe place as I navigated the border between California suburbia and the Bengali culture of my traditional home.



After studying political science at Stanford and public policy at U.C. Berkeley, I taught in middle school, high school and college. When I began to write fiction, my protagonists were often—not surprisingly—strong female characters trying to bridge different cultures.



Mitali Perkins is the author of several books for young people, including SECRET KEEPER (Random House), MONSOON SUMMER (Random House), RICKSHAW GIRL (Charlesbridge), and the FIRST DAUGHTER books (Dutton).



ABOUT THE BOOK



Often cited as Maud Hart Lovelace’s (of Betsy-Tacy fame) best novel, Emily of Deep Valley is now back in print, with a new foreword by acclaimed young adult author Mitali Perkins and new archival material about the characters’ real lives.



Emily Webster, an orphan living with her grandfather, is not like the other girls her age in Deep Valley, Minnesota. The gulf between Emily and her classmates widens even more when they graduate from Deep Valley High School in 1912. Emily longs to go off to college with everyone else, but she can’t leave her grandfather. Emily resigns herself to facing a “lost winter,” but soon decides to stop feeling sorry for herself. And with a new program of study, a growing interest in the Syrian community, and a handsome new teacher at the high school to fill her days, Emily gains more than she ever dreamed...



In addition to her beloved Betsy-Tacy books, Maud Hart Lovelace wrote three more stories set in the fictional town of Deep Valley: Winona’s Pony Cart, Carney’s House Party and Emily of Deep Valley. Longtime fans and new readers alike will be delighted to find the Deep Valley books available again for the first time in many years.



If you would like to browse inside Emily of Deep Valley, go HERE.

My thoughts:
I have not enjoyed a book this year as much as I have enjoyed this one. This was by far the icing on the cake for me :)
Warmth and humanity all over it. I loved the Forward written by Mitali Perkins. What insight into her world!
I was so inspired by Emily (the main character) and encouraged.
We try to hard in our lives to 'Do the right things' and 'Not succumb to the world'
and this book really affirmed things for me. I was encouraged, revived, awakened.
Loved it.
A real keeper.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Divine Appointments by Charlene Baumauch

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Divine Appointments
WaterBrook Press; Reprint edition (September 21, 2010)
by
Charlene Baumbich




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Charlene Ann Baumbich is the author of the previous three books in the Partonville series. A popular speaker, journalist, and author, for several years she has lectured to women’s groups and retreats. Baumbich is also an award-winning journalist whose work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Today’s Christian Woman, and numerous other publications. She is the author of six nonfiction books of humor and inspiration.



Charlene says: For over two decades of writing and speaking, my passionate pursuit to entertain and rejuvenate using humor (I love to laugh-especially at myself), uncommon wisdom, and passionate insights has been affirmed through countless calls, letters, and evaluation sheets. A reader recently e-mailed, "There is so much depression and sadness in this world. I applaud you for reminding all of us to treasure the moments in our lives, and for encouraging us to find joy in the little things. What you do helps so many to rise above the heaviness of life and live, and laugh, and face another day, so thanks!!!!" That is exactly why I keep doing what I do.



I am a firm believer in the power of story (short or book-length, funny or insightful, real or fiction, on stage or page) to accomplish my purpose, which is to remind you: Don't Miss Your Life! Whether you're tuning into me live or in print, fasten your seatbelt. I promise you a wild, fun, provocative, heart-warming ride.



ABOUT THE BOOK





Josie Brooks, at the age of 47, thought she was leading an enviable single life. A successful consultant, she calls her own shots, goes where the money is, and never needs to compromise. But her precisely managed world begins to falter during a Chicago contract when an economic downturn, a bleeding heart boss, and the loyalty and kindness between endangered employees ding her coat of armor.



Throw in hot flashes, a dose of loneliness, a peculiar longing for intimacy, an

unquenchable thirst—not to mention a mysterious snow globe with a serene landscape, complete with a flowing river and lush greenery that seems to be beckoning her in—and Josie’s buttoned-up life is on the verge of coming completely undone.



Maybe her solitary existence isn’t as fulfilling as she has convinced herself to believe. It will take a few new friends, a mystical encounter, and an unexpected journey to set Josie on her own path to “right-sizing” and making the life changes that really matter. Filled with laugh-out loud moments and a gentle dash of inspiration, Divine Appointments is another heartwarming charmer from a master storyteller.



If you would like to read the first chapter of Divine Appointments, go HERE.

My Thoughts:
There is nothing more refreshing than a hearty laugh and this gal surely knows how to bring it. She warms your heart with this book and yet fills your cup with laughter. This is what touched me more than any other thing. The laughter renews my spirit and makes me walk a lot lighter. I love someone with a good sense of humour and she truly has it. A good read here!

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Lightkeepers Bride by Colleen Coble



This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Lightkeeper's Bride
Thomas Nelson (October 19, 2010)
by
Colleen Coble




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:





Author Colleen Coble’s thirty-five novels and novellas have won or finaled in awards ranging from the Romance Writers of America prestigious RITA, the Holt Medallion, the ACFW Book of the Year, the Daphne du Maurier, National Readers’ Choice, the Booksellers Best, and the 2009 Best Books of Indiana-Fiction award. She writes romantic mysteries because she loves to see justice prevail and love begin with a happy ending.



A word from Colleen: God has been faithful, though the path has not been easy. Nothing worth doing is ever easy. God wouldn’t let me give up, and I like to think the struggle made me stronger. God has given me so much in my life, most importantly my great family, a loving church family at New Life Baptist Church, and my wonderful publishing family at Nelson Books.



ABOUT THE BOOK



A thrilling romantic mystery set in the lush Victorian age.



Central Operator Katie Russell's inquisitive ways have just uncovered her parents' plan for her marriage to wealthy bachelor Bartholomew Foster. Her heart is unmoved, but she knows the match will bring her family status and respectability.



Then Katie overhears a phone conversation that makes her uneasy and asks authorities to investigate. But the caller is nowhere to be found. Mysterious connections arise between the caller and a ship lost at sea.



Against propriety, Katie questions the new lighthouse keeper, Will Jesperson. Then a smallpox epidemic forces their quarantine in his lighthouse. Though of low social status, Will's bravery and kindness remove Katie's suspicion and win her love. Katie and Will together work to solve the mystery of the missing girl and the lost ship as God gives the couple the desire of their hearts.



If you would like to read the first chapter of The Lightkeeper's Bride, go HERE.

My Thoughts:
Romance, mystery...what more could a girl ask for?
This one really gets your mind and heart racing. I love it. A quick read at a
fast pace. The characters are beautifully crafted and drawn out, so much so that I still think of them now and again:)
Good story!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Silent Order by Melanie Dobson

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Silent Order
Summerside Press (November 1, 2010)
by
Melanie Dobson




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Melanie Dobson is the award-winning author of The Black Cloister; Love Finds You in Liberty, Indiana; and Together for Good.



Prior to launching Dobson Media Group in 1999, Melanie was the corporate publicity manager at Focus on the Family where she was responsible for the publicity of events, products, films, and TV specials. Melanie received her undergraduate degree in journalism from Liberty University and her master's degree in communication from Regent University. She has worked in the fields of publicity and journalism for fifteen years including two years as a publicist for The Family Channel.



Melanie and her husband, Jon, met in Colorado Springs in 1997 at Vanguard Church. Jon works in the field of computer animation. Since they've been married, the Dobsons have relocated numerous times including stints in Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, Colorado, Berlin, and Southern California. These days they are enjoying their new home in the Pacific Northwest.



Jon and Melanie have adopted their two daughters —Karly (6) and Kinzel (5). When Melanie isn't writing or entertaining their girls, she enjoys exploring ghost towns and dusty back roads, traveling, hiking, line dancing, and reading inspirational fiction.





ABOUT THE BOOK



Rural America - 1928. After the murder of his partner, Detective Rollin Wells hides away in an Amish home near Sugarcreek, Ohio, to find out who in the police force is

collaborating with Cleveland’s notorious mob. While Rollin searches for answers to his partner’s death, he befriends an elusive young Amish woman named Katie and her young son. As Rollin learns about Katie’s past, he’s shocked at the secret Katie is hiding - a secret that has haunted Rollin for eight years.



If you would like to read the first chapter of The Silent Order, go HERE.

My Thoughts:
I love Melanie Dobson :)
This is yet another terrific work of art by her.
The pages flew by as I was lost in the story. Wonderful!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Long Time Coming by Vanessa Miller

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Long Time Coming
Abingdon Press (November 1, 2010)
by
Vanessa Miller






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Vanessa Miller of Dayton, Ohio, is a best-selling author, playwright, and motivational speaker. Her stage productions include: Get You Some Business, Don’t Turn Your Back on God, and Can’t You Hear Them Crying. Vanessa is currently in the process of turning the novels in the Rain Series into stage productions.



Vanessa has been writing since she was a young child. When she wasn’t writing poetry, short stories, stage plays and novels, reading great books consumed her free time. However, it wasn’t until she committed her life to the Lord in 1994 that she realized all gifts and anointing come from God. She then set out to write redemption stories that glorify God.



To date, Vanessa has completed the Rain and Storm Series. She is currently working on the Forsaken series, Second Chance at Love series and a single title, Long Time Coming. Vanessa believes that each book will touch readers across the country in a special way. It is, after all, her God-given destiny to write and produce plays and novels that bring deliverance to God’s people. These books have received rave reviews, winning Best Christian Fiction Awards and topping numerous Bestseller’s lists.





ABOUT THE BOOK



Two women from different worlds find hope together.



Faithful Christian Deidre Clark-Morris is a professional career-minded woman with a loving husband, but no children. Kenisha Smalls has lived in poverty all her life. She has three children by three different men and has just been diagnosed with inoperable cervical cancer.



While the meeting between these two women appears accidental, it becomes their catalyst of hope. Neither woman expects the blessing that God has in store for her. While Deidre will guide Kenisha on the path to eternal life with Jesus Christ, Kenisha will teach Deidre how to stand strong against the hard-knocks of life.



If you would like to read the first chapter of Long Time Coming, go HERE





Watch the book video:





My Thoughts:
I can not help but think of the song "I Will Rise" by Chris Tomlin while reviewing this book.
Touching. Emotional. Heartfelt.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Amy Inspired by Bethany Pierce

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Amy Inspired
Bethany House; Original edition (October 1, 2010)
by
Bethany Pierce




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



After completing a master's in Creative Writing and working as a visiting instructor at Miami University in Ohio, Bethany Pierce now lives with her husband in Charlottesville, Virginia, where she is a member of the McGuffey Art Center and continues to write. Her first book, Feeling for Bones, was one of Publishers Weekly's Best Books of 2007.



ABOUT THE BOOK



With rejections piling up, she could use just a little inspiration...



Amy Gallagher is an aspiring writer who, after countless rejections, has settled for a career as an English professor in small-town Ohio just to pay the bills. All her dreams suddenly start to unravel as rejections pile up--both from publishers and her boyfriend.



But just as Amy fears her life is stuck in a holding pattern, she meets the mysterious, attractive, and unavailable Eli. She struggles to walk the fine line between friendship and something more with Eli, even as staying true to her faith becomes unexpectedly complicated.



When secrets, tragedy, and poor decisions cause rifts in Amy's relationships, she must come to terms with who she's become, her unrealized aspirations for her life, and the state of her faith. Can she dare to hope that she will find love and fulfillment despite it all?



If you would like to read the first chapter of Amy Inspired, go HERE.

My Thoughts:
I read this and SO understood "Amy". From the first sentence in the prologue I KNEW it would be a book I could not put down. My hopes were lifted up as a child "Be anything you want!" I was told...and then reality sinks in. A nice change from the old fashioned genre that I have been reading of late. This one really spoke to my heart.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Hatteras Girl by Alice Wisler

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Hatteras Girl
Bethany House; Original edition (October 1, 2010)
by
Alice Wisler




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:





Alice J. Wisler is an author, public speaker, advocate, and fundraiser. She has been a guest on several radio and TV programs to promote her self-published cookbooks, Slices of Sunlight and Down the Cereal Aisle. She graduated from Eastern Mennonite University and has traveled the country in jobs that minister to people. Alice was raised in Japan and currently resides in Durham, North Carolina.



Facts about Alice

* Born in Osaka, Japan and lived in Japan for 18 years

* Went to Kyoto International School and Canadian Academy

* Majored in Social Work and graduated in 1983 from Eastern Mennonite University

* Worked at a group home for disadvantaged kids outside of Philadelphia

* Taught English and Culture Orientation at a refugee camp in the Philippines

* Taught English as a Second Language in Japan

* Speaks and teaches on Writing the Heartache

* Has three kids on earth, and one in Heaven

* Recently got married to Carl on 2/7/09



ABOUT THE BOOK



There are two things twenty-nine-year-old Jackie Donovan asks God for: an honest, wonderful man to marry, and to own a bed-and-breakfast in the Outer Banks region. In the meantime, Jackie works for Lighthouse Views magazine, writing articles about other local business owners, and intrepidly goes on the blind dates set up by her well-meaning but oh-so-clueless relatives.



There's one specific property Jackie dreams of purchasing: the Bailey Place, a fabulous old home where Jackie spent many happy childhood afternoons, a place that has now fallen into disrepair because of its outrageous price tag.



When Jackie meets handsome Davis Erickson, who holds the key to the Bailey Place, Jackie is sure God has answered both her prayers. But as Jackie learns some disturbing details about Davis's past, she begins to question her own motivation. Will she risk her long-held dreams to find out the truth?



If you would like to read the first chapter of Hatteras Girl, go HERE.

My Thoughts:
My first impression was "If I can hang on through this awkward painful first date, then the rest of the book is going to be amazing." And sure enough, it was! Alice Wisler delivered. She painted the worst date scene in the opening of her book and I figured that if she could illustrate that so well with her words, the rest would all fall into place. Beautifully written! What stuck out was how we gauge our successes by monetary gain and Alice Wisler brought to the surface "I wonder how God marks our success?".
So very interesting. That really stuck in my brain throughout the book.

Friday, November 05, 2010

Grace by Shelley Shepard Gray

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Grace
Avon Inspire; Original edition (October 26, 2010)
by
Shelley Shepard Gray






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:







Shelley Shepard Gray is the beloved author of the Sisters of the Heart series, including Hidden, Wanted, and Forgiven. Before writing, she was a teacher in both Texas and Colorado. She now writes full time and lives in southern Ohio with her husband and two children. When not writing, Shelley volunteers at church, reads, and enjoys walking her miniature dachshund on her town's scenic bike trail.







ABOUT THE BOOK

It's Christmastime at the Brenneman Bed & Breakfast, and everyone is excited about closing down for the holiday.



Anna and Henry will be celebrating their first Christmas as a married couple, and for Katie and Jonathan Lundy, it's their first Christmas with baby Stefan. Winnie and Samuel Miller plan to stop by as well for a wonderful two weeks of family and rest.



But when two unexpected visitors show up, hoping to stay for Christmas, the family must test their commitment to hospitality. Levi is a widower who lost his wife four years ago and can't bear the thought of another Christmas alone. And Melody is a young pregnant woman who won't open up about how she ended up on her own at Christmas at almost nine months pregnant.



Anna, who knows a thing or two about keeping secrets, doesn't trust her, and strives to find out the truth about these two strangers who have disrupted their holiday. But as the Christmas spirit descends on them all, as well as snow that traps them in the inn, a healing and hopefulness takes over, allowing new relationships to be built, and the boundaries of family to be extended.



If you'd like to read the first chapter of Grace, go HERE.



My Thoughts:
As always Shelley Shepard Gray swept my away in the first few pages.
Tear flowed throughout the story. (As I am pretty sure is the case with all her books) She has a true GIFT with words.
I love this new book Grace. It stirred my heart and soul to thinking "His Grace is Enough." That phrase kept repeating itself to me over and over while I read.
No matter what circumstance, His Grace is enough.
Perfectly written.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Head in the Clouds by Karen Witemeyer

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Head in the Clouds
Bethany House; Original edition (October 1, 2010)
by
Karen Witemeyer






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Karen Witemeyer is a deacon's wife and mother of three who believes the world needs more happily-ever-afters. To that end, she combines her love of bygone eras with her passion for helping women mature in Christ to craft historical romance novels that lift the spirit and nurture the soul.



After growing up in California, Karen moved to Texas to attend Abilene Christian University where she earned bachelor and master's degrees in Psychology. It was also there that she met and married her own Texas hero. He roped her in good, for she has lived in Texas ever since. In fact, she fell so in love with this rugged land of sweeping sunsets and enduring pioneer spirit, that she incorporates it into the pages of her novels, setting her stories in the small towns of a state that burgeoned into greatness in the mid-to-late 1800s.



Karen is living her dream by writing Christian historical romance novels for Bethany House. When she visited her publisher back in January of 2010, she was interviewed by the staff. If you'd like a behind-the-scenes glimpse into how she develops her story ideas and a description of her bumpy journey to publication, go to her website to listen to a podcast of that interview.





ABOUT THE BOOK



Adelaide Proctor is a young woman with her head in the clouds, longing for a real-life storybook hero to claim as her own. But when a husband-hunting debacle leaves her humiliated, she interviews for a staid governess position on a central Texas sheep ranch and vows to leave her romantic yearnings behind.



When Gideon Westcott left his privileged life in England to make a name for himself in America's wool industry, he never expected to become a father overnight. And five-year-old Isabella hasn't uttered a word since she lost her mother. The unconventionality of the new governess concerns Gideon--and intrigues him at the same time. But he can't afford distractions. He has a ranch to run, a shearing to oversee, and a suspicious fence-cutting to investigate.



When Isabella's uncle comes to claim the child--and her inheritance--Gideon and Adelaide must work together to protect Isabella from the man's evil schemes. And soon neither can deny their growing attraction. But after so many heartbreaks, will Adelaide be willing to get her head out of the clouds and put her heart on the line?



If you would like to read the first chapter of Head in the Clouds, go HERE.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Outlive Your Life You Were Made to Make a Difference By Max Lucado Published by Thomas Nelson

Reviewer's Guide

Facebook.com/upwordsministry Twitter.com/maxlucado Twitter.com/lucadoteam Community.maxlucado.com
Book Description

These are difficult days in our world's history. 1.75 billion people are desperately poor, natural disasters are gouging entire nations, and economic uncertainty still reigns across the globe. But you and I have been given an opportunity to make a big difference. What if we did? What if we rocked the world with hope? Infiltrated all corners with God's love and life? We are created by a great God to do great works. He invites us to outlive our lives, not just in heaven, but here on earth. Let's live our lives in such a way that the world will be glad we did. (Please note: International Bloggers will receive International Edition.)


My Thoughts:
At first I thought this would be one of those dreadfully painful books that brings everyone down. One that is full of despair and hopelessness. I am not really sure why I had that impression, but I did. I guess I figured if it was a non-fiction
book telling me how to live my life in a better way then it would not be an easy process. Any kind of change or growth is painful-right?
Well, in this case-wrong.
This book is so uplifting and inspiring. I was immediately burning with the urge to help someone, do something, anything but stay still.
Even the smallest things are SO significant. That spoke volumes to me. Often times we think that we have to do things on such a grand scale, but sometimes it's the tiniest gesture that makes the greatest impact.




*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Monday, November 01, 2010

The Preacher's Bride by Jody Hedlund

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Preacher's Bride
Bethany House; Original edition (October 1, 2010)
by
Jody Hedlund






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Jody has written novels for the last 16 years (with a hiatus when her children were young. In May of 2009 she double-finaled in the Genesis contest, a national fiction-writing contest for unpublished writers, sponsored by American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW.Shortly after the final, Jody acquired an agent, Rachelle Gardner of Word Serve Literary. Her agent spent the summer of 2009 working on selling her books. In September of that year, Jody signed a three-book deal with Bethany House Publishers. Jody’s debut novel, The Preacher’s Bride, releases in Oct. 2010. Her next book will release in 2011 and a third in 2012.







ABOUT THE BOOK



In 1650s England, a young Puritan maiden is on a mission to save the baby of her newly widowed preacher--whether her assistance is wanted or not. Always ready to help those in need, Elizabeth ignores John's protests of her aid. She's even willing to risk her lone marriage prospect to help the little family. Yet Elizabeth's new role as nanny takes a dangerous turn when John's boldness from the pulpit makes him a target of political and religious leaders. As the preacher's enemies become desperate to silence him, they draw Elizabeth into a deadly web of deception. Finding herself in more danger than she ever bargained for, she's more determined than ever to save the child--and man--she's come to love.



If you would like to read the first chapter of The Preacher's Bride, go HERE.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Season of Miracles by Rusty Whitener

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
A Season of Miracles
Kregel Publications; Reprint edition (August 3, 2010)
by
Rusty Whitener




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Rusty Whitener is a novelist, screenwriter, and actor. His first screenplay, Touched, won second place at the 2009 Kairos Prize at the Los Angeles Movieguide Awards and first place at the Gideon film festival. That screenplay soon became A Season of Miracles. The movie version of this book is now in production with Elevating Entertainment. Find out more at www.rustywhitener.com and www.aseasonofmiraclesmovie.com. Videos and book club discussion questions are also available at www.aseasonofmiraclesbook.com.





Endorsements:

“A Season of Miracles is a must read for anyone who has ever played youth baseball. I read the book, and was reacquainted with my childhood. In the midst of an enjoyable read that took me down memory lane was a touching, challenging and beautiful story about how God can use the unlikeliest among us to draw us to Him.”—Matt Diaz, outfielder, Atlanta Braves
“Baseball, inspiration and childhood memories—a great combination. I couldn’t put it down!”—Richard Sterban, bass singer for The Oak Ridge Boys
“Rusty Whitener weaves a deft tale of young friendship and the curve balls of faith, the whole story seasoned with sunshine and the leathery scent of baseball gloves!”—Ray Blackston, author of Flabbergasted
A Season of Miracles is a heartwarming all American story of small town boys and Little League baseball. You’ll be cheering this captivating bunch of characters all the way home both in their game of baseball and the bigger game of life.”—Ann Gabhart, award-winning author of The Outsider




ABOUT THE BOOK



Looking back on the 1971 Little League season, Zack Ross relives the summer that changed his life…



Gunning for the championship is all that matters until twelve-year-old Zack meets Rafer, a boy whose differences make him an outcast but whose abilities on the baseball field make him the key to victory.



Admired for his contribution to the team, Rafer turns everyone’s expectations upside down, bestowing a gift to Zack and his teammates that forces them to think—is there more to life than winning or losing? And what is this thing called grace?



If you would like to read the first chapter of A Season of Miracles, go HERE.





My Thoughts:
I actually groaned at first glance of this book. Sorry!
HOWEVER, never judge a book by the cover. Never.
I am so so so glad I cracked it open because what a gem I found inside.
Warm and comforting. Old familial phrases and a story that will take you
back. Way back. Some sadness and laughter. All the best elements of a truly great book. Terrific.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Lydia’s Charm by Wanda E. Brunstetter



This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Lydia's Charm
Barbour Books (September 1, 2010)
by
Wanda E. Brunstetter




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



A Note From Wanda:



Ever since I was a child, I wanted to be a writer. When I was in the second grade, I wrote my first poem about a moth. Luckily, I received encouragement from my teacher. During my teen years, I wrote skits that my church teen group performed during special holidays.



It wasn’t until 1980, that I took a course on writing for children and teenagers. I became serious about a career as an author. Soon after that, I began to write stories, articles, poems, and devotionals, which appeared in a variety of Christian publications. Later, I had 5 books of puppet/ventriloquist scripts published. *These books are currently available by contacting me. (wanda@wandabrunstetter.com)



My first novel was released by Barbour Publishing’s book club, Heartsong Presents, in Dec. 1997. I have now written nearly fifty books, with over 4 million books in print. Many of the novels I've written are Amish-themed.



ABOUT THE BOOK





Widowed and jobless, Lydia King moves her son and herself to Charm, Ohio, to be close to her mother and help with her grandfather. Menno Troyer, a furniture store owner, is also recently widowed and the father of four energetic boys.



Levi Stutzman, another newcomer to the area, is the only one in his family not handicapped by dwarfism and has dedicated his life to caring for them. As fall colors the countryside, will anonymous gifts left for Lydia bring her hope for a new life and romance, or will another tragedy flood her with infinite despair?



If you would like to read the first chapter of Lydia's Charm, go HERE.



Watch the book trailer:





My Thoughts:
Always a delight to read Wanda Brunstetter's books.
She develops beautiful characters and a flowing storyline
that takes you on quite a journey. A pleasure.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A Very Private Grave by Donna Fletcher Crow

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
A Very Private Grave
Monarch Books (August 1, 2010)
by
Donna Fletcher Crow





ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Donna Fletcher Crow is author of more than thirty-five novels. She has twice won first place in the Historical Fiction category from the National Association of Press Women, and has also been a finalist for "Best Inspirational Novel" from the Romance Writers of America. She is a member of The Arts Centre Group and Sisters in Crime. Find out more at www.donnafletchercrow.com.



Endorsements:

"History and mystery and murders most foul keep the pages turning ... A fascinating read." –Liz Curtis Higgs, bestelling author of Thorn in My Heart
“A Knickerbocker Glory of a thriller, a sweeping, page-turning quest served up with dollops of Church history and lashings of romance. Donna Fletcher Crow has created her own niche within the genre of clerical mysteries.” – Kate Charles, author of Deep Waters
“As in Glastonbury, Donna Fletcher Crow’s descriptions of the English and Scottish settings in her new mystery are drawn with real artistry. Lovers of British history and church history will be impressed by her grasp of both.”—Sally Wright, Edgar Award finalist and author of the Ben Reese Mysteries






ABOUT THE BOOK



Felicity Howard, a young American studying for the Anglican priesthood at the College of the Transfiguration in Yorkshire, is devastated when she finds her beloved Fr. Dominic bludgeoned to death and Fr. Antony, her church history lecturer, soaked in his blood.



Following the cryptic clues contained in a poem the dead man had pressed upon her minutes before his death, she and Fr. Antony—who is wanted for questioning by the police—flee the monastery to seek more information about Fr. Dominic and end up in the holy island of Lindisfarne, former home of Saint Cuthbert.



Their quest leads them into a dark puzzle...and considerable danger.



If you would like to read the Prologue and first Chapter of A Very Private Grave, go HERE.



Watch the book video:

Monday, October 18, 2010

While We're Far Apart by Lynn Austin

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
While We're Far Apart
Bethany House (October 1, 2010)
by
Lynn Austin







ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



It was during the long Canadian winters at home with her children that Lynn made progress on her dream to write, carving out a few hours of writing time each day while her children napped. Lynn credits her early experience of learning to write amid the chaos of family life for her ability to be a productive writer while making sure her family remains her top priority.



Along with reading, two of Lynn's lifelong passions are history and archaeology. While researching her Biblical fiction series, Chronicles of the Kings, these two interests led her to pursue graduate studies in Biblical Backgrounds and Archaeology through Southwestern Theological Seminary. She and her son traveled to Israel during the summer of 1989 to take part in an archaeological dig at the ancient city of Timnah. This experience contributed to the inspiration for her novel Wings of Refuge.



Lynn resigned from teaching to write full-time in 1992. Since then she has published twelve novels. Five of her historical novels, Hidden Places, Candle in the Darkness, Fire by Night, A Proper Pursuit, and Until We Reach Home have won Christy Awards in 2002, 2003, 2004, 2008, and 2009 for excellence in Christian Fiction. Fire by Night was also one of only five inspirational fiction books chosen by Library Journal for their top picks of 2003, and All She Ever Wanted was chosen as one of the five inspirational top picks of 2005. Lynn's novel Hidden Places has been made into a movie for the Hallmark Channel, starring actress Shirley Jones. Ms Jones received a 2006 Emmy Award nomination for her portrayal of Aunt Batty in the film.





ABOUT THE BOOK



In an unassuming apartment building in Brooklyn, New York, three lives intersect as the reality of war invades each aspect of their lives. Young Esther is heartbroken when her father decides to enlist in the army shortly after the death of her mother.



Penny Goodrich has been in love with Eddie Shaffer for as long as she can remember; now that Eddie's wife is dead, Penny feels she has been given a second chance and offers to care for his children in the hope that he will finally notice her and marry her after the war.



And elderly Mr. Mendel, the landlord, waits for the war to end to hear what has happened to his son trapped in war-torn Hungary. But during the long, endless wait for victory overseas, life on the home front will go from bad to worse.



Yet these characters will find themselves growing and changing in ways they never expected--and ultimately discovering truths about God's love...even when He is silent.



If you would like to read the first chapter of While We're Far Apart, go HERE.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Embers of Love by Tracie Peterson

This week, the


Christian Fiction Blog Alliance


is introducing


Embers of Love
Bethany House (October 1, 2010)


by
Tracie Peterson






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Tracie Peterson is the bestselling, award-winning author of more than 85 novels.

She received her first book contract in November, 1992 and saw A Place To Belong published in February 1993 with Barbour Publishings' Heartsong Presents. She wrote exclusively with Heartsong for the next two years, receiving their readership's vote for Favorite Author of the Year for three years in a row.



In December, 1995 she signed a contract with Bethany House Publishers to co-write a series with author Judith Pella. Tracie now writes exclusively for Bethany House Publishers.



She teaches writing workshops at a variety of conferences on subjects such as inspirational romance and historical research.



Tracie was awarded the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for 2007 Inspirational Fiction and her books have won numerous awards for favorite books in a variety of contests.



Making her home in Montana, this Kansas native enjoys spending time with family--especially her three grandchildren--Rainy, Fox and Max. She's active in her church as the Director of Women's Ministries, coordinates a yearly writer's retreat for published authors, and travels, as time permits, to research her books





ABOUT THE BOOK



The logging industry in eastern Texas is booming, and Deborah Vandermark plans to assist her family's business now that she's completed college. Unexpectedly, her best friend, Lizzie Decker, accompanies her back home--fleeing a wedding and groom she has no interest in.



Deborah, the determined matchmaker, puts her sights on uniting her brother and dear friend in a true love match. Deborah soon meets Dr. Christopher Clayton, a much-needed addition to the town. As their lives intersect, Deborah realizes that she has a much greater interest in medicine and science than the bookkeeping she was trained in.



But when typhoid begins to spread and Lizzie's jilted fiance returns, Deborah wonders if true love can overcome such obstacles...for those dearest to her, and for herself.



If you would like to read the first chapter of Embers of Love, go HERE.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Snow Day by Billy Coffey

This week, the


Christian Fiction Blog Alliance


is introducing


Snow Day
FaithWords (October 11, 2010)


by


Billy Coffey






ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



When you’re raised in small-town Virginia by a redneck father and a Mennonite mother, certain things become ingrained. And when you marry a small-town girl and have two small-town kids, all you want to do is pass those ingrained things along.



Like believing the best life is one lived in the country enjoying the pleasures it provides—summer nights beneath the stars, rocking chairs on the front porch, deer grazing in the fields. And believing that no matter how iffy life can get sometimes, there are some things that are eternal and unchanging.



But above all else, believing that in everything there is story waiting to be told.



That’s where I come in.



Billy Coffey was raised on stories. The first ones came on the front porches of relatives, tales laced with local charm and deep meaning. Then came the stories from people like Max Lucado and Robert Fulghum, who write with a charm and deep meaning of their own.



Billy lives with his wife and two children in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. If you drive by his house, you’ll probably spot him on the front porch. If you do, give him a wave. He’ll wave back.



ABOUT THE BOOK



In this debut novel, Peter is a simple man who lives by a simple truth--a person gains strength by leaning on his constants. To him, those constants are the factory where he works, the family he loves, and the God who sustains him. But when news of job cuts comes against the backdrop of an unexpected snowstorm, his life becomes filled with far more doubts than certainties.



With humor and a gift for storytelling, Billy Coffey brings you along as he spends his snow day encountering family, friends, and strangers of his small Virginia town. All have had their own battles with life's storms. Some have found redemption. Others are still seeking it. But each one offers a piece to the puzzle of why we must sometimes suffer loss, and each one will help Peter find a greater truth--our lives are made beautiful not by our big moments, but our little ones. (2010)



To read an excerpt from Snow Day, go HERE.

My Thoughts:
I so enjoyed this book :)
Much more than I initially thought I would actually.
I anticipated it to be a little bit of a downer given the fact that the
main character was possibly going to lose his job and all the dire circumstances that would come with that. It was actually uplifting and heart-opening.
I loved journeying through the town and having my eyes opened to the bigger picture of life. We all need this every once and a while. So refreshing. I loved it:)
Life is not about making more money and status and a bigger house-car-etc.
Loved this book! Thank you Bill Coffey.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

The Nativity Collection By Robert Morgan

Book Description

Step into the wonder-filled world of Christmas with this endearing collection of original stories.

Even though he has two million copies of books in print, Robert J. Morgan writes only one short story each year—an original work to share with his church on Christmas Eve. These Christmas stories are now available in one beautiful volume for your own enjoyment. You’ll meet a shy, bookish boy who finds himself center stage in the Christmas pageant, a Pennsylvania family whose car disappears on December 24th, and a mountain man trapped in a blizzard with his grandson on Christmas Eve. From six different settings, you’ll meet characters you feel you’ve known your whole life, who’ll make you laugh one minute and cry the next. So this year, and the years to follow, gather your family and experience the true spirit of love at Christmas through this timeless gift of story.


My Thoughts:
A beautiful Christmas book with illustrations to dazzle the imagination.
Perfect as a gift or keepsake, this book will delight the reader for years
to come. A definite treasure to add to the Christmas box :)
The stories in this book warmed me right to my core. Blessed reminders
of the Goodness in the world, even though life brings hardships sometimes, light comes. Goodness comes. These stories are moving and lovely reminders that we should spread His Glory all year not just at Christmas.

I was so moved by the story "Poet Boy".
So often we try try try to mold our kids and make them into
things they can not be. We try to fit and squeeze them into
images or castings we 'think' they should fit into because
everyone else fits those ideals or molds and our children should also.
However, the boy in this story could not adapt to the mold. His individuality
needed to burst through! This story helped open my eyes a little bit more.
Beautiful.



Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Love Finds You Under the Mistletoe by Irene Brand and Anita Higman

This week, the


Christian Fiction Blog Alliance


is introducing


Love Finds You Under the Mistletoe
Summerside Press (September 1, 2010)


by
Irene Brand & Anita Higman






ABOUT THE AUTHORS:







Irene Brand has written Sunday School curriculum, edited a two-year series of mission curriculum, and her works have appeared in five program-material anthologies. Her publishers include Zondervan, Standard Publishing, Thomas Nelson Publishers, Fleming-Revell, Barbour Publishing, Kregel Publications, Steeple Hill (inspirational imprint of Silhouette), and Summerside Press. She has had 4 non-fiction books published, and 43 fiction works. Her first inspirational romance was published in 1984.







Award-winning author, Anita Higman, has twenty-six books published (several coauthored) for adults and children, and she has been honored as a Barnes & Noble Author of the Month for Houston. Anita has a BA degree, combining speech communication, psychology, and art. Her favorite things include exotic teas, movies, and all things Jane Austen.









ABOUT THE BOOK



Two Christmas stories - one historical, one contemporary - under one cover!



Love Finds You under the Mistletoe: An Appalachian Christmas



A promise to her dying sister compels Julia Mayfield to take her young nephew to Mistletoe, Kentucky, a tiny town tucked away in the Appalachian Mountains. Sparks fly when she meets David Armstrong, a World War II veteran like herself. Even as shadows from the past weave a dangerous web around Julia and David, will their love flourish like the mistletoe that blankets the nearby hills?



Love Finds You under the Mistletoe: Once Upon a Christmas Eve



Hollie Goodnight's store has just been voted best Christmas shop in America. All the new publicity draws flamboyant novelist Van Keaton to the cozy town of Noel, Missouri, demanding to write Hollie's story - a dramatic tale of misfortune and triumph. She is swept up in his world of beautiful words and fanciful interludes. . .until Owen Quigly, her lifelong best friend, launches a plan to win her back.



If you would like to read an excerpt of Love Finds You Under the Mistletoe, go HERE.



Watch the book trailer: