No Neutral Ground Book Review

Purchase your copy here.

About the Book

No Neutral Ground: After his father divorces his mother because of her Jewish ancestry, Rafe and the rest of his family flee Germany. As a B-17 navigator, he returns to Europe. On the ocean voyage, he meets Jennie, an artist journeying to Sweden to work with the OSS.

Flying missions against his former homeland arouses emotions that surprise Rafe. Despite being rejected, he is troubled by the destruction of Germany and his heart still cries for his father’s love.

Sweden may be neutral, but it’s full of intrigue. Jennie assists the OSS at the American legation in Sweden. She thought she’d be doing passive, behind-the-scenes work. Instead, she’s pushed into an active role to gain intelligence and frustrate the Germans.

How can Rafe and Jennie succeed in their dangerous roles when they are so conflicted?

My Two Cents

Can I just say that Terri Wangard has done it again?! I absolutely loved this book! I liked it even better than her first one. I will admit that I may or may not have a crush on her character Rafe. *blushes* Terri’s characters are so realistic and they draw you in! I love how Terri gives the readers a different perspective on Germany in World War II; not all the Germans agreed with what went on there. I highly recommend this book to you!

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars!

Thank you to Celebrate Lit and Terri Wangard for a free copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest review. No monetary compensation was given.

About the Author

Terri Wangard grew up in Green Bay, Wisconsin, during the Lombardi Glory Years. Her first Girl Scout badge was the Writer. These days she is writing historical fiction, and won the 2013 Writers on the Storm contest and 2013 First Impressions, as well as being a 2012 Genesis finalist. Holder of a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in library science, she lives in Wisconsin. Her research included going for a ride in a WWII B-17 Flying Fortress bomber. Classic Boating Magazine, a family business since 1984, keeps her busy as an associate editor.

Connect with Terri:
www.terriwangard.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/AuthorTerriWangard
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/terriwangard/

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May 3: Book Reviews From an Avid Reader

May 4: A Greater Yes

May 5: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

May 5: The Editor’s Note

May 6: Daysong Reflections

May 6: Mary Hake

May 7: Bigreadersite

May 8: Inklings and Notions

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May 10: Cassandra M’s Place (spotlight)

May 11: Christian Bookaholic

May 12: Singing Librarian Books

May 13: Texas Book-aholic

May 14: Simple Harvest Reads

May 15: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

May 16: Artistic Nobody

Guest Post from Terri Wangard

I hadn’t planned on writing No Neutral Ground. Friends and Enemies (book one of the Promise For Tomorrow series) was the WWII story I’d wanted to write, inspired by family history on the German side. Finishing that, I’d started writing a contemporary story set in one of my favorite places, Green Lake, Wisconsin.

At an ACFW conference, I had an appointment to pitch Friends and Enemies with an editor. She said I’d be likelier to get a contract if I had a series. The Green Lake story got shelved.

What could I write to partner with Friends and Enemies? That stumped me. The German side of the story was my big interest, but another one? No. I had no desire to return to Nazi Germany. My ancestry is three quarters German. All of my forbearers arrived in America before 1900, but it’s still a bitter thought that their homeland spawned such evil.

Germany’s out, so that left me with the other side of Friends and Enemies—the B-17s. I’d chosen the Flying Fortress because of my timeline. In mid-1944, the only American military men in Germany were shot-down airmen. I had plenty of material I hadn’t used in Friends and Enemies, but the plot had to be different. Something other writers hadn’t touched on. Maybe…Sweden?

Who’s familiar with Sweden’s role in World War II?

If American planes got in trouble during their missions and couldn’t make it back to their bases in England, they sought sanctuary in neutral countries. Switzerland is usually the first that comes to mind. Tricia Goyer had already written The Swiss Courier which touches on internees.

But Sweden. I had even visited Sweden. In 1993, my dad and I had gone to Sweden to cover a classic boat show for our magazine, Classic Boating. During a free day, we had wandered around Stockholm and taken lots of pictures.

I started the research and discovered, hmm, there’s not much, especially if you don’t know Swedish. One book I acquired held a eureka moment. A B-17 was damaged and the pilot told the crew to bail out. The navigator hurried to the cockpit and implored him to try to make it to Sweden. He was from Germany, a former member of the Hitler Youth, and he did not want to be captured by his former countrymen. There’s my male protagonist! Rafe discovered he had Jewish ancestry and had to flee Germany. Now he’s back at war with the homeland.

I still needed a female protagonist, and Jennie proved hard to pin down. I was pulling her together throughout the writing. I enjoyed reading accounts of Betty McIntosh, who served with the OSS in the China-Burma-India theater. Why not enlist Jennie’s services with the OSS in Sweden? She’s talented but lacks confidence. Pretty soon, Jennie found her voice.

As my research continued, I made a surprising discovery. One of the photos I’d taken in Stockholm turned out to be the former home of the American legation in Sweden. Jennie’s workplace. And I had thought it was just an example of lovely architecture.

I hope you’ll enjoy reading about Rafe and Jennie in No Neutral Ground.

Giveaway

To celebrate her No Neutral Ground tour, Terri is giving away several prizes. Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/97ca

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Amish Quilts Coloring Book Review

Purchase your copy here.

About the book

Feeling stressed? Why not relax with an adult coloring book? Rachel J. Good’s Amish Quilts Coloring Book takes you back to a time and place that’s calm. Immerse yourself in a world of peace as you color the 25 different quilts.

Inspired by quilts seen in Amish country, many of these designs are based on traditional patterns, but some have been reimagined or repeated multiple times to create more intricate designs to color. Each quilt is printed on only one side of the page; facing pages contain inspirational Amish proverbs. To make the quilts even more colorful and interesting, sketch fabric designs – plaids, checks, paisleys, flowers, or abstract shapes – into the larger quilt blocks, use pattern stamps, or even collage fabric scraps to the pages. And if the designs inspire you to make quilts of your own, the pages can be used as templates for quilt-making.

My Two Cents

The coloring pages I received from this book were absolutely beautiful. As I was coloring the page it felt like I was making my very own Amish quilt. I do have to say that these pages are very detailed, so they take a lot of time to color. That being said, seeing the final outcome made all the effort worth it!

Here is my quilt:

IMG_3134

About the Author

Rachel J. Good, inspirational author, writes life-changing, heartfelt novels of faith, hope, and forgiveness. She is the author of Amish romances in the Sisters & Friends series. She grew up near Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the setting for her novels. A former teacher and librarian, she completed her MA from Vermont College while raising five children. She is presently an MFA student in Writing and Illustration at Hollins University. In addition to having more than 2200 articles and 30 books in print or forthcoming under several pseudonyms, she also juggles freelance editing and illustration careers. To buy the Amish Quilts Coloring Book: http://amzn.to/1VmIOUi. Visit Rachel at:

Website: www.racheljgood.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/racheljgoodnovels/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/RachelJGood1

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14661177.Rachel_J_Good

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/racheljgood1/

Blog Stops

May 4: Bookworm Mama

May 5: Smiling Book Reviews

May 5: Cassandra M’s Place

May 6: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner

May 6: Simple Harvest Reads

May 7: Blossoms and Blessings

May 7: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

May 8: Tell Tale Book Reviews

May 9: Karen’s Krayons

May 9: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

May 10: Texas Book-aholic

May 11: Singing Librarian Books

May 12: Through the Open Window

May 12: Petra’s Hope

May 13: Lighthouse Academy

May 13: Reader’s Cozy Corner

May 14: A Greater Yes

May 14: Artistic Nobody

May 15: Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses

May 15: Books! Books! Books!

May 15: Raining Butterfly Kisses

May 15: Quiet Quilter

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away two autographed copies of her Amish Quilts Coloring Book! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/986f

For Richer or Poorer Review

Purchase your copy of For Richer or Poorer here

About the Book

Elizabeth Whitte finds herself on the frigid border of Minnesota and Canada as winter sets in. When her plans for finding a husband and rushing back to Kansas fall through, she has to stay and learn a few things…like how to care for others.

Robert is a Mountie in Fort Frances, Canada. When he meets Elizabeth, his first instinct is to send her home. He’s been burned by women like her in the past and knows his life isn’t suited for them. Elizabeth’s pull is strong, but he cannot leave his beloved Canada.

As Elizabeth matures in many ways, Robert must decide if sending her back to Kansas is still his best option. Could she learn to love him, and his beautiful home?

My Two Cents

This week I read For Richer or Poorer by Kari Trumbo. Let me just say, Kari Trumbo did a great job with Elizabeth. I absolutely hated her at first! By the end of the book though, I had warmed up to her character. I love the way Kari uses this character to teach forgiveness. There were a couple times were I felt I was missing something, so it might be a good idea to read the first book before reading this one. I would recommend this book to you though!

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars!

Thank you to Celebrate Lit and Kari Trumbo for a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review!

About the Author

Kari Trumbo is a writer of Christian Historical Romance and a stay-at-home mom to four vibrant children. She does freelance developmental editing and blogging. When she isn’t writing or editing, she homeschools her children and pretends to keep up with them. Kari has written three novels in the Western Vows series and one prequel/novella; all should be released by fall of 2016. Kari loves reading, listening to contemporary Christian music, singing with the worship team, and curling up near the wood stove when winter hits. She makes her home in central Minnesota with her husband of eighteen years, two daughters, two sons, and four cats.

Places to follow Kari:

Website Facebook Twitter Pinterest Amazon

Blog Spots

May 1: Mary Hake

May 1: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

May 2: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

May 3: A Greater Yes

May 4: Bukwurmzzzz

May 5: Simple Harvest Reads

May 6: Artistic Nobody

May 6: Cassandra M’s Place

May 7: Red Headed Book Lady

Guest Post from Kari Trumbo

Welcome to the tour, my new friends!

The Western Vows series began, believe it or not, on a dream and a challenge. I’m very close friends with another writer. We’d been friends for about seven years when she published her first book. I offered to edit it for her and tucked my own secret thoughts of writing inside. She and I are so alike, we share a birthday, look similar, have similar interests and likes, but we are not sisters, at least in the biological sense. When I’d been editing for her for three years, in secret, I wrote a manuscript. It was during the month of our shared birthdays. I told her about it and she said the best thing to do when you start writing is to set that one aside and keep going. NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) camp came the very next month and she challenged me to write another, right away. I’d had a story bottled up for over three years. I accepted her challenge, set my word count, and finished the first draft of To Honor and Cherish five weeks later.

I knew the story was good, I just needed to work on it, but while I was writing the story of Meg, stubborn Lizzy started pushing her way to the forefront of my mind. That would be For Richer or Poorer. I edited book one over twenty-five times and submitted it to a few agents, all of whom gave me good advice on how to improve it. Parts that I took out of book one in editing became the background of Forsaking All Others, the prequel and Rose’s story, explaining how a Sioux couple ended up on a Kansas ranch.

Lastly, and the most difficult, was To Love and Comfort, Margot’s story. She fought me every step of the way and that story had to be started over four times before I got it right. It will be released fall of 2016. There may be more novels in the Western Vows series, I’m not willing to write the end just yet. I’m currently working on two new series, one focused on a tiny town in Montana with three other authors, the other a series based in Nebraska.

In For Richer or Poorer, I’ll take you through the taming of Elizabeth Whitte. I didn’t like her much at first, and I don’t think you will, either, but keep reading! She reminded me a bit of Scarlet O’Hara in the beginning. She rushes off to Northern Minnesota to trick a man into marrying her so she can inherit her father’s ranch. She never dreamed that there might be men out there unwilling to listen to her every demand. Life is a little harsh for her, but she soon learns that the things she teased her sister Meg about enjoying, just might make her happy, too. By the end of For Richer or Poorer, Elizabeth was one of my favorite characters and Robert is, bar none, my favorite hero so far.

I hope you enjoy their story as much as I did writing it.

~Kari

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kari is giving away two wonderful prizes! The grand prize winner will receive a Kindle Fire. The first place winner will receive a copy of each of her books. This giveaway begins April 30 and ends May 9. This giveaway is sponsored by the author and entrants release any liability to this blog and Celebrate Lit.

Click here to enter.