Guest Review from Mindy Houng for Strains of Silence by Bethany Kaczmarek

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About the Book

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Author: Bethany Kaczmarek

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: August 1, 2017

Music was her driving passion and the truest expression of her faith, but three months before her wedding, twenty-year-old Kasia Bernolak can’t even pick up her guitar. Feeling like a fraud who will ruin her dad’s pastoral reputation, she can barely meet his eyes. When Kasia finds the strength to break off her engagement, she still doesn’t realize the dangerous truth: Blake Hamilton isn’t ready to say goodbye. And he’ll do whatever it takes to keep her.

Alexander “Zan” Maddox has seen what a domineering man can do to an unsuspecting woman, and Zan is sick of injustice. He gave up a college baseball scholarship so he could protect his sister from her abusive husband. When he rescues Kasia from her ex-fiancé, he instinctively appoints himself her personal bodyguard. Now, all he has to do is keep from falling for her himself.

Kasia and Zan become fast friends, but true healing and justice might cost more than either of them is willing to pay.

Click here to purchase your copy.

Guest Review from Mindy Houng

“Only God can change you. But I know He hasn’t given up on you. Nor have any of the rest of us. You jump, and your family will meet you where you land.”
The above quote from the book is a prominent theme throughout the book. This is the first book by the author I have read and it was a difficult book to read because it dealt with profoundly emotional issues. It is a very well-written book with beautiful characters and strong storyline. It also has a solid foundation of faith running through the book, as most of the characters are Christian not afraid to voice their Christian perspective based on the Bible. The dialogue is real and down to earth and quite funny at times.
The story revolves around Kasia and Zan. Kasia is a college student, a talented musician, and a daughter of a pastor who finds herself in a relationship she does not want and breaks off her engagement. Zan is a college baseball player, trying to find ways to protect his older sister in an abusive marriage while trying to salvage his ball career and his father’s approval. Their paths cross multiple times and their friendship takes a long time with carefully measured steps to develop. They both have broken pasts and uncertain present and future but realize that dependence on God is the only certainty they can have in life. Zan’s faith journey is powerful and his friend Jayce’s real-life explanations of salvation and life with Jesus are profound, powerful, and moving.
This is definitely a find-yourself kind of journey that 20 year olds take. It is geared toward a younger generation. Unfortunately for me, these main characters are closer to my children’s ages than they are to me so I empathized more with Kasia’s parents than with Kasia or Zan. However, the book is so well-written and emotionally moving that I became invested in all the characters’ well-beings. Reading this book made me more aware of the things of this world that my children face on a daily basis and how mistaken they could be about a parent’s love and God’s love though they may have grown up in a loving Christian home. I’m reminded to pray for my children more fervently and to pray that they will know and understand God’s unending and merciful love and also understand that my love for them will not waver regardless the mistakes, falls, regrets.
I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher through Celebrate Lit Tour. I was not required to write a favorable review. All comments and opinions are solely my own.

About the Author

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Bethany loves a home filled with family and friends. Word gets around that—at the Kaczmarek house—food is abundant, conversations are real, and anything is up for discussion. She and her clan are fans of laughter, indie music, sonic screwdrivers, and superheroes. Home is wherever in the world they’re all together.

Guest Post from Bethany Kaczmarek

Strains of Silence: A Novel for Anyone Who Can Say #MeToo

We’re everywhere. After years of silence, many survivors of sexual assault are raising our voices. You’ve seen the hashtag. You know someone who suffered like this—a friend, a sister, a daughter.

Maybe you know personally what it’s like to be used.

I’m thankful for the conversations the #MeToo campaign has started, proud of the brave women who are speaking out. But I know some are still quiet, nursing wounds.

I could list loads of valid reasons a victim chooses to suffer in silence.

  • People won’t believe her.
  • If she doesn’t say it out loud, it’s easier to pretend it was a nightmare.
  • He’s got authority over her—at work, at church, in the family—and it’ll cost her too much. He’s done enough damage already.
  • He’s threatened to destroy her reputation, and she believes him. One, because he’ll do it without flinching. Two, because she’s already convinced that she’s living a lie.
  • Because at church, she’s supposed to be fine, smiling, rejoicing in her suffering and pressing on. Besides, people don’t want to sit with her in her pain and listen. They’d rather offer bumper-sticker theology and trite spiritual bandages.
  • The few times she’s tried to speak up, her used-to-be friend basically made her feel like it was her fault.

The list could go on, but it’s fair to say that being honest about what happened to us makes us vulnerable all over again. The idea is understandably stressful.

But you know what? Pretending we’re fine is exhausting too. We bear a great strain when we hide our hurts, for whatever reason.

Kasia Bernolak, the heroine of my novel Strains of Silence, gets it. She’s got reasons for keeping it quiet too. But when God brings some new people into her life, she realizes she doesn’t have to be alone.

And speaking up offers a freedom, a lightness, she wants.

It’s a freedom I want for my readers.

I know. Strains of Silence sounds like a heavy book right now. The themes are heavy, no doubt. There’s no glossing over and prettying up sexual assault or domestic violence. But—just like in real life—it’s how well we surround and support the suffering that can set the tone. Kasia’s friends are real, they’re funny, they’re quirky, and they believe in her.

Besides, it’s not all dark and brooding. There’s travel—an entire summer in the mountains of Peru. There’s a lot of music—Kasia’s a singer/song-writer who loves indie artists (I’ve got a playlist on my website). There’s heritage and culture—meet her immigrant family and you’ll get a delicious taste of Poland. There’s humor—enough to keep the story light when you need it to be.

And there’s hope. Kasia’s life is absolutely full of possibility.

So are the lives of everyone who can say #MeToo.

Sometimes, it just helps to see someone else fight the battle on our own horizon. And if you can do it with a fantastic new playlist and some laughs, why not?

My hope is that Strains of Silence will lead to real discussions with reader-friends, book-club gatherings that become turning points, and the true pursuit of freedom. It’s time to throw off the burdens we wear and stand up. Raise your voice, link arms with others, and fight for hope.

Healing is within our reach.


Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Bethany is giving away a grand prize of a signed book, a Polish pottery mug with two of the main character’s favorite kinds of teas, 4 of her favorite albums (Josh Garrels, Waterdeep, The Gray Havens, and Andrew Greer), a box of chocolate butter cookies, and a $50 Amazon gift card.!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c5dc

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The Angel Paws Collection by Mimi Milan Spotlight

 

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About the Book

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Name of book: The Angel Paws Collection

Author: Mimi Milan

Genre: Multicultural, Contemporary Romance

Release date: December 7, 2017

Scent for Angel

To fight… or fall in love?

The only thing Tanner McKoy wants is to disappear into the backwoods of North Carolina, hopefully forgetting about his tour in Afghanistan. However, forgetting seems improbable. And disappearing is impossible when a determined grad student uses her new shelter rescues to track him down.

After a miserable breakup with her fiance, Eva Perez returns to grad school to complete her thesis and become a physical therapist. Unfortunately, that means assisting on several case studies – one of which includes a surly army veteran who refuses help. How can she win a battle with someone still stuck in combat mode?

Touched by an Angel

*Sweet Contemporary*

An explosion during a tour in Afghanistan took Rhett Marshall’s sight, but not his mind. Too bad his family can’t seem to grasp that fact. He’ll do anything to regain control over his life again… even take drastic measures like marrying a complete stranger just so he can call his own shots.

Luciana Lopez came to the United States on a student visa – which is about to expire. Unfortunately, finding an employer to petition for her so she can stay in the country has proven impossible. Could marriage to a desperate army veteran be the answer to her immigration problem?

Enjoy the second novel in the groundbreaking, heartwarming series, Angel Paws Rescue, that donates twenty percent of proceeds to help army veterans and shelter animals.

When Angel Sing

Fast food, fast cars, and fast women…

Eddie Rivera, a Chicano rock star hoping to break into the American music scene, has always lived life in the fast lane. The last thing he planned on was a country cutie with the belief that a guy “won’t buy the cow if he’s getting the milk for free.” Can a shot at her lifelong dreams and a rescue kitty help him change her mind?

From boys to battlefields, Rachel Linden may have lost her hearing but she has never lost a fight. Of course, she’s never had her dream of singing dangled in front of her either. Is there a strategy she can employ to win a war of wishes… without losing her heart?

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author

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Mimi Milan is an award winning, bestselling author of both historical and contemporary romance. Currently pursuing her MFA in Creative Writing at Queens University, she spends most of her time in the suburbs of Charlotte, crafting stories her family and imaginary friends inspire.

Guest Post from Mimi Milan

I have to be honest.

I don’t know why I wrote Scent of an Angel.

The journey first began when I was asked to join a box set of sweet contemporary romances with seven other authors. Eager for a new experience (my first box set!) I immediately agreed. However, I wasn’t sure what I would write. I had never written a sweet contemporary before – only historicals. While clean and even inspirational, my stories were all full of action and suspense, too. That didn’t exactly sound like “sweet contemporary” to me. So, I set out to find stories that would draw inspiration.

At the same time, I was assigned to read The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien. (Did I mention I’m now in grad school?) I couldn’t get the story out of my mind. I kept dwelling on all the pain and suffering soldiers must endure in order to keep the rest of us safe here at home. Their pain doesn’t end, either. Many return to the States with both physical disabilities and mental illnesses that most civilians couldn’t imagine living with. Right then, I knew I wanted to do something that helped the ones that made it back to us. Since the books in my first series, The Jericho Resistance, donates funds to fight against human trafficking, I liked the idea of copying the same model to help support our veterans. That’s when Tanner McKoy and Eva Perez came to life, driving the story and my mission onward.

Touched by an Angel and When Angels Sing were natural follow-ups for the Angel Paws Rescue anthology.

Today, I’m pretty fortunate. I was asked to join yet another series, The Twelve Days of Christmas Mail Order Brides. So, I’m about to finish up edits on my contribution, The Dancing Lady. I’m at my kitchen table in my nice, warm two-bedroom home with a cup of coffee and a muffin from my favorite local bakery. The children are still asleep, making the house unusually quiet. Looking out the frosted window at a yard lightly dusted with white, I feel safe and at peace. All is right in my small corner of the world. I thank God for that.

I thank Him for the veterans that make it so.

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Mimi is giving away a grand prize of The Angel Paws Collection Celebration Tour Giveaway!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c5db

 

Guest Review from Karin Perry of Into a Silent World by Carmina Edwards

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About the Book

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Title: Into a Silent World

Author: Carmina Edwards

Genre: Biography, Memoir

Release Date: August 15, 2016

Following Amy’s adventures in A Door Cracked Open, she heads into a world which will test her faith and perseverance to the limit. Instead of settling into a simple, safe and unchanging life like she imagined, Amy is strongly drawn to a vocation with even higher requirements, prompting her to plan some seemingly impossible missions in order to reach her goal.

Click here to purchase your copy.

 Guest Review from Karin Perry

This book was unlike any I have read before in that it moves along very simply, and as a result, I found it hard to become engaged in the story.  To be fair, this is book two in a series, and I haven’t read book one. Had I read these in order, I likely would have been more invested in the main character, Amy, and her passions from the start. As it was, Amy was hard for me to connect with, but I ultimately found her to be an interesting character. While she behaves quite simplistically and in an almost immature manner for most of the book, we ultimately see that she is a fairly complex person.  As the story progresses, we find there is more to Amy than is initially seen- she takes several stands that required strength of character and a commitment to her personal beliefs,  especially near the end. It was seeing this strength and commitment that kept me reading, and yet, when the book ends, her story is clearly not done. The ending is a significant cliffhanger, and so if you read this, start with book one, and be prepared to read all three in order to get the full story! If you enjoy fast paced stories with lots of dialogue, then this likely won’t be the book for you. However, if you enjoy a slower paced story that is more focused on character development,  then I recommend you try this…after reading book one of course!

*I received a complimentary copy of this book and chose to review it.

About the Author

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I am a mother of two wonderful grown up children and currently living in the UK, after living in Sweden for three years where I wrote my first book, “A Door Cracked Open.” I was blessed to be able to spend six months in USA before returning to the UK, my home country, to work with my editor in California on the edits of this book and visit friends.

I am an avid reader and linguist, having also spent some years living in France and have been fortunate enough to have taught Swedish and French over twenty-five years and translate for businesses and manuscripts in both languages. Being unemployed the past few years, has led to me becoming homeless. However, I never give up hope. As I try to portray in my books, God has always had His hand on me. Once again, He has stepped in right at the last minute. I now have a new job in Sweden and will be moving back there. Because I feel passionately about helping the homeless, a large percentage of my royalties will go directly to them.

Guest Post from Carmina Edwards

“Into a Silent World” follows on from Amy’s story in “A Door Cracked Open.”

With a new beginning ahead of her, a long standing dream about to be realized, she was unprepared for the events which were about to unfold over the next two years.

Why would God send her to this place of “absolute conviction” and allow her to remain there for that long, if He never meant for her to be there? Amy struggles to understand and seeks His will, but determined that it was His plan, she persevered in order for her dream to be fulfilled.

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Carmina is giving away

Grand Prize:

Paperback copies of A Door Cracked Open & Into a Silent World

1st – 3rd place:

Ebook copy of A Door Cracked Open!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c3c4

 

Guest Post from Karin Perry for To Gain a Mommy by Tanya Eavenson

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

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Name of book: To Gain a Mommy

Author: Tanya Eavenson

Genre: Christian Romance

Release Date: December 10, 2016

They had a plan, but will it work?

Thirteen years ago, pediatrician Hope Michaels was the fool-hearted girl who came home from college to learn the man she loved was engaged to her twin. But now to move on with her life and accept a proposal of marriage, she must confront the one man who holds the key to the wounds of her past.Fire Captain Carl McGuire can put out any flame, except for the one Hope sparks within him. As she stirs up his life and heart, Carl knows some things never change. Even a past he’d rather keep hidden.

When a new neighbor moves in across the street who would be a perfect fit for their family, Mary and Brody form a plan to bring their dad and Hope together. But how will it work if Hope keeps pushing him away?

Guest Review from Karin Perry

To Gain a Mommy by Tanya Eavenson is the perfect story to read after a long, busy day! It is light hearted and quick, and yet still thought provoking. Unlike so many other novellas, it doesn’t feel rushed or forced. The author does a wonderful job developing the personality of the characters along with an interesting storyline. What really made this work for me is the timeframe she selected didn’t try to cover too much. For this reason, other than one secondary character who just seemed too good to be true, the story felt totally believable. It was as if I was given a brief glimpse of the characters’ lives…a glimpse that made me feel like I knew them well, and one that also made me hope Ms. Eavenson writes a sequel! I recommend this for anyone who wants a fun reprieve from a crazy day!

About the Author

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Tanya Eavenson is a bestselling and an award-winning inspirational romance author. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children. Her favorite pastime is grabbing a cup of coffee, eating chocolate, and reading a good book.

Guest Post from Tanya Eavenson

I’d like to thank Celebrate Lit for featuring my first novella in my Gaining Love Series, To Gain a Mommy, for this tour. I’m looking forward to visiting with you along the way!

Recently I was asked to share what inspired me to write To Gain a Mommy. Believe it or not, my inspiration came from a prayer.

Last year my employer offered me a great promotion, but the catch was I’d have little time to spend with my family. So I prayed, asking God for direction for my family, my job, and my writing.

God knows us so well. He knew I had a desire to work with other authors and to write my first novella. He also knew that without a push, I wouldn’t do it.

It all began with a simple post on my Facebook timeline. Another writer posted that she had messaged me but wanted to let me know since FB has a couple of message boxes (I had no idea!). I clicked on my messages, and there it was—the extra message box, filled. As I read through the messages, I found one asking if I’d be interested in joining a novella boxed set. Right away I knew God had answered my prayer.

Needless to say, I didn’t take the position at work and joined the boxed set. Since then, To Gain a Mommy has become an international bestseller and has been a finalist in two contests. My Gaining Love series continues to grow, with the third novella, To Gain a Bodyguard, releasing in time for Christmas. Isn’t God good!

The Lord tells us to trust in Him and that if we do, He will direct our paths. It still amazes me how the Lord works behind the scenes in our lives to give us hope and a future.

Yes, God gives us hope. He gives us a future. This is why I named my heroine in To Gain a Mommy Hope. Romans 5:5 says, “Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us” (NKJV). Although my heroine can’t see her future or what it might hold, she is reminded that God will not disappoint.

The Lord reminds us of the same in our own lives.

 

Giveaway

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In honor of her tour, Tanya is giving away a grand prize package consisting of a $5 Amazon Card and pillow cover from Redbubble! Click the link below to enter! https://promosimple.com/ps/c141

Guest Review from Karin Perry for Waiting for Butterflies by Karen Sargent

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

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Book title: Waiting for Butterflies

Author: Karen Sargent

Release date: April 4, 2017

Genre: Christian Women’s Fiction

When tragedy strikes, Maggie discovers a mother’s love never ends—not even when her life does. Longing for her family after her death, she returns home where she helplessly witnesses her family’s downward spiral in the aftermath of her passing.

Her husband is haunted by past mistakes and struggles to redeem himself. Her teenage daughter silently drowns in her own guilt, secretly believing she is responsible for her mother’s death. Only her five-year-old, full of innocence, can sense her presence.

Although limited by her family’s grief and lack of faith, Maggie is determined to keep a sacred promise and salvage her family before her second chance runs out.

A tender portrait of a mother whose love reaches beyond possible, Waiting for Butterflies will embrace your heart and not let go.

Guest Review from Karin Perry

     The idea behind Waiting for Butterflies by Karen Sargent is very interesting- exploring a mother’s love and if it could be powerful enough to overcome death itself. While this is a very different premise than those usually found within Christian fiction,  it is approached in such a way that it isn’t distracting to the story. Once I was able to wrap my mind around what is happening, that in some way God has allowed Maggie to remain present with her family in order to attempt help them and get closure herself, I was able to connect with her- her fierce love for her family and determination to do what is necessary to take care of them is something that will resonate with those of us who are moms.

This is a very emotional read, so have your Kleenex handy, but I felt the grief journey was handled in a way that allowed me as the reader to focus on the entire story, and not just the intense pain that follows such a devastating loss. As the story unfolded, I was quickly drawn into the life the characters and began rooting for them. Several times the tears in my eyes forced me to set this down, but when I got to the end, I told my husband, “this book was emotional…emotional and hard,  but so very good.”  If you are on the fence about reading this book, I encourage you to read it!

About the Author

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Karen Sargent creates characters whose imperfect faith collides with real-life conflicts, taking readers on a journey through grace and redemption to discover enduring hope. A romantic element is woven within each story. In addition to writing inspirational novels, she blogs at The MOM Journey…where moms aren’t perfect and that’s perfectly okay. Her writing has been featured in Guidepost’s Angels on Earth magazine and on ForEveryMom.com. When she is not writing, she teaches high school and college English in the beautiful Arcadia Valley where she resides with her husband and two daughters. Visit her at KarenSargentBooks.com.

Guest Post from Karen Sargent

Waiting for Butterflies: The Accidental Controversy

I didn’t intend to write myself into controversy when I wrote Waiting for Butterflies. Yes, it is Christian fiction. Yes, the main character is a “lingering spirit.” And no, ghosts aren’t biblical. Thus the controversy.

As the story idea began to stir my imagination after my mother-in-law’s unexpected death, I wondered how ghosts fit into the Christian view of the afterlife, especially since I too believe our souls go to Heaven once we die. So I asked my pastor. He referred to Hebrews 11, the “Faith Hall of Fame” that lists Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, and many spiritual giants who lived by faith. That list is followed by Hebrews 12:1 which states, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses…” My pastor explained witnesses is translated by some to mean spectators. So maybe, maybe, this suggests those who have died can somehow still be present—emphasis on maybe.

But…this gave me just enough permission to play with the idea of a mother’s love being so strong that she could remain after her death until she was certain her family would heal. I was writing fiction after all.

When my manuscript was complete and I began submitting to agents, the response was mixed. Some replied with a simple, “This story isn’t for me.” Some warned, “This will be a hard sell to Christian publishers.” Yet others were more encouraging. Finally my story made it to the desk of an acquisition editor who emailed, “This is the one.” Waiting for Butterflies found a publishing home.

Now that my book is in the hands of readers, most are surprised to hear my topic is controversial. Like me, many believers haven’t really considered ghosts in a biblical context. But a few are adamant that the storyline contradicts their beliefs.

I know my story—just like every story—will not appeal to everyone. But I certainly didn’t set out to offend my fellow believers, and I sincerely apologize if anyone finds it offensive. However, I appreciate this perspective one skeptical reader shared in her review:

“While I was initially put off by the idea that a spirit can remain and interact, in a sense, with those still living, the author handled it with sensitivity and grace. We all have ideas about the unknown, but it is just that, unknown, and I could relate strongly to the thought of wanting to continue to influence and connect with loved ones after death in order to help them.”

I appreciate that in spite of the controversy, this reader gave Waiting for Butterflies a chance—and five stars.

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Karen is giving away a grand prize that includes a few of Karen’s favorite things – one of which is a Hobby Lobby gift card!!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/bef1

 

Guest Review from Karin Perry for All of You

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

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Book title: All of You

Author: Sarah Monzon

Release date: May 15, 2017

Genre:Dual-timeline/Contemporary Romance

Maryland, Present Day

Jacquelyn Rogers can rebuild anything…except the shambles of her past. A restorer of vintage planes, she’s worked hard to earn the reputation of being one of the guys. The last thing she needs is a former Navy pilot fighting his own inner demons stepping in to defend her from dangers she thought she’d outrun long ago. Some battles must be fought alone.

After a freak accident severs Lieutenant Michael “Finch” Carrington’s dreams, as well as two limbs, he’s left with nothing but a fragile faith and a duty-bound promise to watch out for his friend’s baby sister. A promise she insists is as unnecessary as it is unappreciated. But when she turns the tables and begins to weld together the broken parts of his life, it may be his heart that is in need of protection.

England, 1944

With the world at war yet again, Alice Galloway rejects her father’s traditional expectations and offers her piloting expertise to the Air Transport Auxiliary. She may be a woman in a man’s world, but when she overhears key intelligence, she must find the strength to transcend boundaries and her own fears. Or countless people may die.

Sometimes the past reaches forward to bring hope to the future.

Guest Review from Karin Perry

Every once in a while I read a book so good that when I finish it, I find myself immediately going back to the beginning and reading it again- just because I can’t stand for the story to be over! All of You (A Carrington Family Novel, book 2) by Sarah Monzon is one such book. While I loved the first book in this series, this one captured my interest from the start. I was immediately drawn into the world of the characters and found this book hard to put down.  The author expertly weaves together the stories and lives of the characters, blending past and present in a way that leaves the reader feeling connected to them, concerned for their future, and unable to figure out what will happen next. As a result, I found myself up late into the night to keep reading! I’ll admit, it took me longer than some to figure out the connections in the story, but once I did, it added an entirely new level to the plot. I found myself holding my breath in places, laughing in others, crying in others…while I was sorry when it was over, I have to say the ending was super satisfying! All of You by Sarah Monzon is a definite must read!

I have received this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. No monetary compensation was given.

About the Author

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Sarah Monzon is a Navy chaplain’s wife and a stay at home mom to the two cutest littles in the world. Playing pretend all day with them isn’t enough, she spends the evenings after their heads hit the pillow to create her own imaginary characters. When she isn’t in the world of make believe, she can be found in the pine forests of western Washington taking care of her family, fostering friendships, and enjoying all the adventures each day brings.

Her debut novel, The Isaac Project, skyrocketed to Amazon bestseller status while her Sophomore book, Finders Keepers, won the 2017 Selah award for contemporary romance.

Guest Post from Sarah Monzon

I’m so excited to be here today and getting this opportunity to hang out with y’all in this virtual world. If you are anything like me, you devour books faster than my son drinks orange juice (and he really loves orange juice!). Because of that, it is sometimes hard to come across a book with a unique premise or a message that you haven’t seen incorporated a thousand times before. As a writer, I always try to bring something fresh to the table.

In the first book of the Carrington Family Series, Finders Keepers, neither of my characters were Christians. What? No Christians in a Christian fiction novel? Most Christian fiction books usually have at least one or both main characters a Christians. Don’t worry, they both found their way to Jesus. With All of You, however, I wanted to take yet an even different approach.

I’ve ready lots of books where the main character is angry or upset with God for such-and-such thing that happened in his/her life (I’ve even written a character like that), but I hadn’t really read a story about a character that, no matter what life threw at him/her, he/she was going to trust in God no matter what. As a life-long Christian, this is a message I can identify with. The “If not, He is still good” resonation that is sometimes harder to hold on to in the midst of pain and struggles.

So, as with all my books, I hope the freshness of the story and the realness of my characters will inspire and uplift you as you travel along with them on their journey.

God Bless.

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Sarah is giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/bd52

 

Guest Review from Lori Parrish for The Return

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Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

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Book title: The Return

Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher

Release date: Sept 1, 2017

Genre: Amish

In a wild country, the true cost of love may be more than they can bear

Beautiful and winsome, Betsy Zook never questioned her family’s rigid expectations, nor those of devoted Hans—but then she never had to. Not until the night she’s taken captive in a surprise Indian raid. Facing brutality and hardship, Betsy finds herself torn between her pious upbringing and the feelings she’s developing for a native man who encourages her to see God in all circumstances.

Greatly anguished by Betsy’s captivity, Hans turns to Tessa Bauer for comfort. She responds eagerly, overlooking troubling signs of Hans’s hunger for revenge. But if Betsy is ever restored to the Amish, will things between Hans and Tessa have gone too far?

Inspired by true events, this deeply layered novel gives a glimpse into the tumultuous days of prerevolutionary Pennsylvania through the eyes of two young, determined, and faith-filled women.

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Guest Review from Lori Parrish

This stunning book definitely desrves 5 stars!! When u first open this book it’s like everyone’s emotions just slap you in the face and before you know it you’re on the ride of a lifetime! I love this author’s style because that’s exactly what she does! Sends you spiraling into time warp. I think I enjoyed it too because it’s not your typical Amish book.
I love reading books that involves Indians! I could actually hear their war cries and it made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck! My husband had to tell me to put the book down 3 times since I had to work the next day. My but it was hard to!!
Felix good ol Felix! He made me crack up and I didn’t really see the need to grow up at all! Shoot! I’m an adult but I will never grow up lol!! It’s no fun to grow up! He’s my delightful Felix! Sometimes tho I wanted to choke him and make him see what is right in front of his face! That man has been blessed twice over!
Poor Tessa! I’ve been in her spot before.  I felt like people or certain person looking right through me like I wasn’t there!  Yes,  I’ve had my heart broken and I’ve never forgotten my first love because he had left a deep impact on me for life and not all good either!!
Jealousy hits us like a thunderbolt. Many times I’ve felt that way. Why must certain ppl always get things handed to them on a silver platter?  and others have to work for it?
I think Tessa has learned her lessons in life the hard way like I have to and still do.
I really enjoyed this story! Definitely burned the midnight oil!
Love just smacks you in the face or it can sneak up on you  where you least expect it and friendships form whether you want to or not.
God has a way of working these things out in His own timing.
I received this book for free. No monetary compensation was given.

About the Author

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Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than two dozen novels, including Anna’s Crossing and The Newcomer in the Amish Beginnings series, The Bishop’s Family series, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Twitter @suzannewfisher.

Guest Post from Suzanne Woods Fisher

The Three Sisters’ Garden: Corn, Squash & Beans!

Corn was a new food to the immigrants to the New World, introduced to them by Native Americans. Soon, it became an essential part of their daily diet, in one form or another. Growing it brought yet another new discovery: companion planting in the form of the Three Sisters’ Garden.

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According to Iroquois legend, corn, squash and beans were three inseparable sisters who only grew and thrived together. 18th century Native Americans wouldn’t have understood the science behind why companion planting worked, but they knew it did. Beans, like all legumes, have bacteria living on their roots that help them absorb nitrogen from the air and convert it to a form that plants can use. Corn, which requires a lot of nitrogen to grow, benefits from the legumes and provides a pole support for the beans to climb. Low growing squash leaves shade the soil and prevent weed growth. Their sharp and prickly leaves deter pests. This tradition, of planting corn, beans and squash in the same mounds, became a sustainable system to provide long-term soil fertility among Native American tribes that farmed.

The wisdom of planting Three Sisters’ Garden was adopted by the immigrants, including our own Betsy Zook from The Return. Betsy learned of the technique while a captive among a tribe of Indians and later, after she had been returned to the Amish, shared her knowledge with Anna and Bairn.

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Have you ever considered growing a Three Sisters’ garden? All you need is the right kind of seeds, a mound of dirt in a sunny spot, and to not forget to water. Mother Nature will do the rest.

Suzanne Woods Fisher is a bestselling, award-winning author of novels about the Old Order Amish. Her interest in the Plain People began with her grandfather, who was raised as a Dunkard (German Baptist) on a farm in Pennsylvania. Suzanne loves to connect with readers! You can find her on-line at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com.

*Images courtesy of Dream Home Improvement and Technology Exchange Lab

 

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is doing an amazing giveaway from August 1 through 14! Check it out:

Four winners will receive one of the prizes below:

  • An Amish Gift Basket and a copy of The Return
  • Amish popcorn sampler and a copy of The Return
  • The Amish Beginning 3 book set series

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • An iPad Mini

You can enter at Suzanne’s website (http://suzannewoodsfisher.com/contests/) or on her Facebook page (http://gvwy.io/q1kb9u4)