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.
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
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.
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.
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
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:
Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins that helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they are no longer pickpockets—now they focus on high value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. Rosemary’s challenge of a lifetime comes when she’s assigned to determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany. How does one steal a family’s history, their very name?
As Europe moved closer to World War I, rumors swirl around Peter Holstein. Awkward and solitary, but with access to the king, many fear his influence. But Peter can’t help his German last name and wants to prove his loyalty to the Crown—so he can go back to anonymously writing a series of popular adventure novels. When Rosemary arrives on his doorstop pretending to be a well- credentialed historian, Peter believes she’s the right person to help him dig through his family’s past.
When danger and suspicion continue to mount, though, and both realize they’re in a race against time to discover the truth—about Peter’s past and about the undeniable attraction kindling between them.
Guest Review from Lori Parrish
I very much enjoyed this story. I love the historical settings of the novel and how Roseanna did her research. She has a certain talent for storytelling and I have a certain talent for “losing” myself in her books. I did enjoy meeting new people and making new friends with the characters in the book.
I liked Rosemary and I didn’t. I like her because she had a way of bringing out the truth in oneself and others. “Everyone tells lies”, she said. I didn’t really like how she went about certain things and ways. I liked her because she had guts to do what needed done.
Peter is a different story. I think he is or has a mysterious side to him.(I didn’t want to give much away). I liked how Rosemary overlooked his stuttering and “worked” with him in his library. I’ve always wanted to be a librarian. I think I would be in hog heaven with a library like Peter Holsteins. I could imagine myself getting lost in this particular library.
All in all, I thought this was a fabulous book. I love to “time travel”.
I received this book for free. These are my own words and no compensations were received.
About the Author
Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of over a dozen historical novels and novellas, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her British series. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to make their way into her novels…to offset her real life, which is blessedly boring. You can learn more about her and her stories at www.RoseannaMWhite.com.
Guest Post from Roseanna White
It’s always a challenge to make a historical setting authentic—especially when it’s set in a region you’ve only ever read about. As I was writing A Name Unknown, I learned so much about Cornwall—all the more when I had the opportunity to visit the gorgeous Penzance region while the book was still in edits! I quickly learned that I had far too many trees in my story, and hadn’t quite captured the uniqueness of the coastal setting. I dove into rewrites with excitement and gusto, ready to make my fictional Cornwall more like the real one.
I studied the Cornish accent, Cornish foods, typical Cornish coloring in hair and eyes. I’ve now gotten rather proficient at making pasties (beef hand pies) from scratch, I’ve special-ordered ingredients to make Cornish ginger cookies called fairings, and I’ve spent quite a lot of time listening to videos of people speaking in a Cornish accent.
Delving into this rich region and its history was a blast! And I’m so excited to get to share the culture of Cornwall—and a taste of their unique flavors—with you. In a special Celebrate Lit giveaway, I’ll be offering not only a signed copy of my book, but also some homemade ginger fairings! Here’s the recipe I used . . . after special ordering the Mixed Spice (reminiscent of pumpkin pie spice) and Golden Syrup (a thick syrup with a bit of a toffee flavor) from Amazon. 😉 (I have a gram scale so did use the weight measurements rather than volume—also, English teaspoons and tablespoons are a bit bigger than American, so I heaped them, and I turned out deliciously.)
Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease baking sheets or line with parchment paper.
Combine flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and spices in a stand mixer. Add the butter and beat until mixture forms coarse crumbs. Stir in sugar.
In a small saucepan, warm the golden syrup until it’s clarified a bit; stir into the flour mixture until a dough forms. Roll the dough into walnut sized balls and put on prepared baking sheets a few inches apart.
Bake 8-10 minutes, until golden. Cool a few minutes on the trays and then transfer to a cooling rack.
To celebrate this tour, Roseanna is giving away a grand prize of a paperback copy of A Name Unknown & 2 dozen cookies from Roseanna!!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/bc0e
Holly has her eye on a handsome state trooper. Not on her boring, oh-so-serious, former professor, Adam.
Having her toes curl when she’s near Adam must be ignored.
Holly just wants a great dad for her twin girls. She’s going to find one, write a novel to fulfill her dreams, and create a happy life.
Falling in love isn’t part of her plan.
Guest Review from Lori Parrish
As usual I got into a middle of a series without knowing it. I’ve learned that this book 3. I’ve enjoyed this story and for someone that is greatly afraid of flying I enjoyed flying with Adam and Holly. I felt like I was in the plane with them enjoying the sites from the air. However; in reality I’d be scared to death to look around.
I can certainly sympathize with Holly after having had my heart broke as well. I do admire Holly for putting her kid’s first before any man. I’m glad she views them as a gift from God because there are some people out there who don’t. Holly is a woman of many talents. Isn’t it funny how we woman are multi tasked or talented?
I do admire Adam. It takes a pretty special man to accept a ready made family. Adam is a man of many talents too! It’s funny how life is. I think Adam is pretty special.
Matt only thought of himself. I can’t stand a man like that. I had a funny feeling about him from the start. There are certain things in life that doesn’t need an audience however. I would’ve been embarrassed to death had Matt done me like that. Not only that, probably three shades of red as well.
I love Holly’s kids! Twins to boot!!! I had to snicker throughout the book. Especially where there are times when all of us do jump to conclusions without hearing the story first. I do agree with Adam and Holly that there should never be any secrets in a marriage. For if and when they do come out if often causes bitterness and resentment from one or the other. I like this story because it had a fresh feel to it. It’s not normally what I read. It’s a page Turner for sure!! It’s also great to have staunch supporters like siblings! I’ve never had that opportunity. I really enjoyed the banter throughout this book. I’ve gotten a taste for Alaska in this book too. This will be a new author to add to my ever growing list!!
I received this book for free.
These are my own words and no compensations were received.
About the Author
Writing books that are fun and touch your heart
Even though Shannon L. Brown always loved to read, she didn’t plan to be a writer. She earned two degrees from the University of Alaska, one in journalism/public communications, but didn’t become a journalist.
Years passed. Shannon felt pulled into a writing life, testing her wings with a novel and moving on to articles. Shannon is now an award-winning journalist who has sold hundreds of articles to local, national, and regional publications.
Shannon was born and raised in Alaska so she enjoyed writing the books in the Alaska Dream Romance series. “The Feather Chase” was her first published book and began the Crime-Solving Cousins Mystery series. The eight-to-twelve-year-olds in your life will enjoy this contemporary twist on a Nancy Drew-type mystery.
Shannon lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with her professor husband and adorable calico cat.
Guest Post from Shannon Brown
When a character opens the door and steps from her world into mine, writing about her is easier. Holly Harris in Crazy About Alaska is a real estate agent, and I was once one. I’ve driven clients around and shown them houses only to have them go a different direction. My husband and I bought a new house a few years ago, so I have tales to tell from that experience too. (Readers may think the purple shower is made up. Think again.) I chose to bring a college professor into her life as a love interest. I’m married to one.
Some of myself always finds its way into a story. Sometimes, it’s just something I might like to do. Holly’s sister Jemma rehabs furniture in Falling for Alaska, book one in the series. The idea for her business came while I was watching HGTV’s Flea Market Flip. Taking trash and making it beautiful sounds like something I’d like to try. Jemma also dislikes coffee and drinks tea. (Here I am again.) But she is not exactly me. She’s cooking challenged, and I’m a good cook.
Does the story become about the author when she inserts herself into it? Reality is only a fun fraction of the book. Holly has two men vying for her affections. That never happened. (It might have been fun if it had!) She also has five-year-old twins. I never experienced that.
By far the most challenging of the sisters in the series was Bree in book two, Loving Alaska. She’s a doctor, and my knowledge of the medical profession comes from sitting on the exam table, not from doing the exam. I spoke with doctors I knew and brought her to life. But Bree isn’t all made up either. She despises being in nature, especially camping. I’ve camped on a frozen river, beside a lake after canoeing or boating in, and many more places, but I’m with Bree and hotels are greatly preferred. There I am in the story again.
Reading the books I’ve written helps you know who I am. I’m a woman with a big imagination who enjoys bringing stories to life. Oh, and that slightly sarcastic sense of humor you may notice with Jemma and Holly? That might be from me as well.
To celebrate this tour, Shannon Brown is giving away a grand prize of a book lovers gift basket – a basket filled with book-related things!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/bb35
“When you have experienced the Holy Ghost as I have, you would see that it is difficult to turn back.”
When the lively fervor of nineteenth century revivalism endangers the staid customs of the Amish community in the lush but rugged Kishacoquillas Valley of central Pennsylvania in 1847, the Amish church must deal with a divisive question: What is a genuine spiritual experience?
The question turns personal when Susanna’s beloved cousin Noah begins preaching while under trances and even though he is not a minister he gives long sermons that attract increasing attention. Curious, she helps to keep Noah safe during his trances. At the same time Adam, Susanna’s intended, feels pressure from the bishop to speak out against the ways of revivalism.
Susanna and Adam are pushed to opposite sides of a controversy that threatens their traditional Amish faith.. Now they must grapple with whether love is possible…even if they come to different conclusions.
When Noah goes missing at a time of day when he often preaches while asleep, circumstances thrust community members with divergent opinions into a crisis that demands they recognize the humanity they share regardless of beliefs. But can strong-held opinions be softened by the truths that shape their lives?
Guest Review from Lori Parrish
I enjoyed this book very much!! I love reading the history of the Amish and how they came to this country just like the English did for various reasons. I think what drew me to this particular book was at a time when the revival meetings started. I have attended a few rivals myself and I love them. I liked how they all came together to help the one in need. I didn’t like however how some people treated an individual just because he was “different”.
I think Gladden the Heart means to accept Jesus in your heart no matter who does the preaching. Whoever accepts Jesus will have eternal life and joy will shine through to whomever will meet up with you. I also love the friendship between Amish and English even tho the Amish want to set themselves from the world. Some people are just set in their ways no matter how much we try to help or change them.
Veronica Susanna’s mother was afraid of the influence that the preaching that went on. I’m glad for Susanna’s father who was sturdy and firm in his decision making and on whom to trust. I like nosy Timothy too. If I had a brother I’d want him to be just like Timothy. There were some things in the book that made me smile and laugh too. I also held my breath in certain places. I didn’t want anything to happen to my favorite person!
If I had an uncle I’d want to be just like Noah. I thought Noah was cool for an Amish man. Olivia will be added to my list of favorite authors because I enjoy her stories. I wanted to add that I loved the little authors note at the end of the book. I think it’s good to know how the author gets ideas for their stories and knowing there. is truth mixed in with fiction. This is why I love fiction.
I received this book for free. These are my own words and no compensations were received.
About the Author
Olivia Newport’s novels twist through time to discover where faith and passions meet. She chases joy in Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where daylilies grow as tall as she is. Her books include the Avenue of Dreams series set in 1890s Chicago; the Valley of Choice series, which intertwines contemporary and historical Amish stories; the historical Amish Turns of Time series; and Hidden Falls, a warm, contemporary, small-town novel.
Guest Post from Olivia Newport
Now don’t laugh, but my guess is that if you looked around your church on any given Sunday morning, you’d see somebody sleeping. It might be an infant or toddler whose nap time collides with the worship time resting in a parent’s arms, or it might be a senior citizen who has perfected the art of dozing in an upright position.
What you don’t expect is that the person sleeping will be the preacher.
I’ve always been interested in church history. I even read a magazine called Christian History on a regular basis and consider it pleasure reading. In my ambling through church history, I came across a notation about “sleeping preachers” in the nineteenth century in various denominations, including the Amish. The accounts suggested that individuals who were not ministers would fall unconscious, wake up to preach for lengthy periods, sleep again, and have no recollection of their actions.
Could this possibly be true? Or a giant hoax? What’s a genuine spiritual experience, and what do we do when don’t agree on how to answer that question? Let’s face it, even now, 150 years later, we still don’t quite know what to do with our varying traditions when we don’t agree on how to answer that question.
I knew I had the makings of a story. Gladden the Heart travels back to 1847 and wrestles with these questions. When a divided community faces a life-or-death situation, they must respond to a crisis that challenges them to look past their differences. But can strong-held opinions be softened by the truths that shape their lives?
Gladden the Heart is the fifth story in Olivia Newport’s Amish Turns of Time series of historical Amish novels. Olivia chases joy in Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where daylilies grow as tall as she is.
Genre: Modern romantic light suspense with a historical back story
Release Date: April 1, 2017
The Restoration Trilogy: When Jennifer Rushmore accepts a brooding bachelor’s job offer to act as coordinator for the restoration of his family’s historic doctor’s house (WHITE), apothecary (WIDOW) and log cabin (WITCH) in a rural Georgia community, little does she know it’s her own heart that will undergo the greatest renovation. Three stories. Three centuries. Three lessons on the healing of the heart. And one buried mystery that threatens their redemption.
WITCH, Book Three: Having restored Michael Johnson’s ancestors’ house and apothecary shop and begun applying the lessons of family and forgiveness unearthed from the past, Jennifer Rushmore expects to complete her first preservation job with the simple relocation of a log home. But as her crew reconstructs the 1787 cabin, home to the first Dunham doctor, attacks on those involved throw suspicion on neighbors and friends alike. And while Jennifer has trusted God and Michael with the pain of her past, it appears Michael’s been keeping his own secrets. Will she use a dream job offer from Savannah as an escape, or will a haunting tale from a Colonial diary convince her to rely on the faithfulness of his love?
About the Author
DENISE WEIMER holds a journalism degree with a minor in history from Asbury University. A former magazine writer, she is the author of romantic novella REDEEMING GRACE, The Georgia Gold Series (SAUTEE SHADOWS, THE GRAY DIVIDE, THE CRIMSON BLOOM, and BRIGHT AS GOLD – winner of the 2015 John Esten Cooke Award for outstanding Southern literature) and The Restoration Trilogy (WHITE, WIDOW and WITCH). Denise is a wife and swim mom of two daughters who always pauses for old houses, coffee and chocolate!
Guest post from Denise Weimer
The first thing I want to tell you about Witch is … it’s not scary! Hang with me, and I’ll share more about the title.
The Restoration Trilogy mixes a unique tonic … the budding of a romance and friendships in a humorous, small-town community, a splash of suspense, and spiritual and emotional healing. When Jennifer Rushmore accepts a brooding bachelor’s job offer to act as coordinator for the restoration of his family’s historic doctor’s house (White), apothecary (Widow) and log cabin (Witch) in a rural Georgia community, little does she know it’s her own heart that will undergo the greatest renovation. Three stories. Three centuries. Three lessons on the healing of the heart. And one buried mystery that threatens their redemption.
Having restored Michael Johnson’s ancestors’ house and apothecary shop and begun applying the lessons of family and forgiveness unearthed from the past, Jennifer expects to complete her first preservation job with the simple relocation of a log home. But as her crew reconstructs the 1787 cabin, home to the first Dunham doctor, attacks on those involved throw suspicion on neighbors and friends alike. And while Jennifer has trusted God and Michael with the pain of her past, it appears Michael’s been keeping his own secrets. Will she use a dream job offer from Savannah as an escape, or will a haunting tale from a Colonial diary convince her to rely on the faithfulness of his love?
The restoration my parents did on a real life doctor’s house and apothecary shop inspired this series. As I watched them work and learn about the historical line of doctors associated with their property, I realized how much a physical restoration project can mirror the spiritual work God wants to do in each of us. And that’s exactly what happens with Michael and Jennifer, who both conceal areas of brokenness from their pasts. As they come together to restore his family buildings, the stories they uncover about his ancestors reveal truths they need to apply in their own lives:
Family connection from the 1920s story of Georgia Pearl as they restore the house (White)
Forgiveness from the 1860s story of Charlotte as they restore the apothecary (Widow)
Faithfulness from the 1780s story of Verity as they restore the log cabin (Witch)
The title of each novel – and the cover – reflects that struggle of the historical heroine. Eventually each, as well as Michael and Jennifer, learn that only God, the Master Renovator and the Great Physician, can heal their broken places.
So here’s your prescription, should you choose to accept it by entering into this grand prize giveaway!
Grand Prize Gift Basket From Durham Apothecary & Museum: Take from a homemade tea pocket one of the selection of special teas. While brewing thy favorite tea, dispense liberally from the tea cookie tin onto a china plate. Prop up thy feet and commence thy reading journey through a print copy of White, Widow AND Witch! After a goodly time of rest and reflection, take up thy quill (ahem, I mean set of decorative pens) and record pearls of wisdom in thy new journal. When they husband and children begin to grumble, rise with fresh vigor to prepare a meal from Farmer’s Almanac Colonial Cookbook.
Second place prize: an e-book copy of Witch (or any other one book of The Restoration Trilogy.
To celebrate her tour, Denise is giving away:
A Grand Prize Gift Basket From Durham Apothecary & Museum: Take from a homemade tea pocket one of the selection of special teas. While brewing thy favorite tea, dispense liberally from the tea cookie tin onto a china plate. Prop up thy feet and commence thy reading journey through a print copy of White, Widow AND Witch! After a goodly time of rest and reflection, take up thy quill (ahem, I mean set of decorative pens) and record pearls of wisdom in thy new journal. When thy husband and children begin to grumble, rise with fresh vigor to prepare a meal from Farmer’s Almanac Colonial Cookbook.
Second place prize: an e-book copy of Witch (or any other one book of The Restoration Trilogy)
Mae Stafford longs for the companionship and unconditional love her sister has found in her new husband. But after years of refusing potential suitors because of a pact they made as children, Mae no longer has any choices left once their agreement is broken. She has no hope that God will give her what she desires most, a family of her own. Instead of dwelling on what she doesn’t have, she throws herself into her work as the recent sole owner of the local dress shop.
As a promise made to his late wife, Johannes Mueller agrees to travel west to be a school teacher in Calder Springs, Texas, away from the bigotry associated with being an immigrant in New York City. He hopes to improve his life and forget his loss. Johannes isn’t counting on his five-year-old daughter’s search for a new mother when they arrive. His little LillyAnn finds ways to bring the seamstress and him together…often. Can he learn to embrace his German heritage and unlock his heart to love again?
About the Author
Jodie Wolfe creates novels where hope and quirky meet. She’s been a semi-finalist and finalist in various writing contests and is a member of ACFW. When not writing she enjoys spending time with her husband in Pennsylvania, reading, walking, and being a Grammie. Learn more at www.jodiewolfe.com.
Guest Post from Jodie Wolfe
I’m so excited to be a part of a Celebrate Lit tour. Thank you for the opportunity to give a small peek into my world. J Love in the Seams is book two in my Twins & Needles series. Mae Stafford’s journey to believe and have hope that God will give her the desires of her heart echo the ups and downs of my writing adventure.
I wrote my first novel as a teen quite a number of years ago. Ahem. We won’t say how many years that have passed since then. J Let’s just say it’s quite a few. My next novel didn’t get written until my early twenties…and then soon after I had children. Fiction writing took a back seat as I raised my sons and home schooled them all the way through high school.
Over seven years ago I felt God nudging me back to writing. I still had a son at home, so the progress was a little slow at first. Since then I’ve written four novels, three novellas, and have pitched a half dozen other ideas at various conferences or through my amazing agent.
God dropped my agent, Linda S. Glaz of Hartline Literary Agency, into my lap when I least expected it, but that’s a different story. I’ve had quite a number of rejections over the past few years as she’s tried to drum up interest for my books. We’ve had some nibbles and times when an editor or two was interested, but things didn’t progress any further than that.
I’ve entered contests and have experienced mixed results. I semi-finaled in American Christian Fiction Writer’s Genesis contest a few years ago, and this past summer I found out I’m a finalist in three different contests. But there also have been quite a few where the responses weren’t so great.
Earlier this year I decided to put out a novella independently and Hearts Tightly Knit was the result. It told the tale of Mae’s twin sister, Ellie, and their pact to always stay together and never marry. When Ellie ended up with her happily-ever-after, I knew that Mae needed one too. The only thing is Mae isn’t sure if her hopes for a family will ever come to fruition.
Highs and lows are part of a writer’s life. Well, actually for all of us. J Sometimes it’s easy to get bogged down in the negatives, the ‘rejections’ and not be able to see past them. Believe me, at times I wallow there for a little bit, but my aim is to write books that share about the hope we have in Christ. How can I convey that if I don’t believe and experience it myself?
One of my favorite verses is Hebrews 11:1 (HCSB) which says, “Now faith is the reality of what is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen.” One of the things I have hoped for many years was a writing contract. That finally happened in September when I signed for a novelette with Celebrate Lit that will be coming out in the spring. In the process of waiting, I’ve found God has refined and honed me in this journey of hope.
My prayer is that my books will touch your heart and give you a glimmer of the hope we have in Christ. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity into your world.
In honor of her tour, Jodie is giving away a wooden decorated basket, a 24 thread spools with needles and threader, a pack of 30 needles, a tape measure, a tomato pin cushion, embroidery scissors, a thimble, 15 piece sewing kit, and a $10 Amazon gift card0! Click the link below to enter; be sure to comment on this post to claim your nine bonus entries for this giveaway! https://promosimple.com/ps/a88d
Meet nine men and women whose competitive goals take them to state and county fairs between 1889 and 1930. From baking pie to polishing pigs, from sculpting butter to stitching quilts, everyone has something to prove to themselves and their communities. But in going for the blue ribbon, will nine women miss the greatest prize of all—the devoted heart of a godly man?
My Two Cents
This was such a cute collection of stories! I have to say that my favorite was definitely Carrie Fancett Pagels’ story Requilted with Love! I absolutely loved it! There were quite a few times I couldn’t contain my laughter. I loved the characters and how they interacted with each other in this story. I definitely recommend it! I give this collection 4 out of 5 stars!
I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley. No compensation was given for this review.
About the Authors
Jennifer AlLee believes the most important thing a woman can do is discover her identity in God—a theme that carries throughout her stories. She’s a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and RWA’s Faith, Hope and Love Chapter. When she’s not spinning tales, she enjoys board games with friends, movies, and breaking into song for no particular reason. Jennifer lives with her family in the grace-filled city of Las Vegas, Nevada. Please visit her at http://www.jenniferallee.com.
Angela Breidenbach is a bestselling author, host of Grace Under Pressure Radio, and the Christian Author Network’s president. And yes, she’s half of the fun fe-lion comedy duo, Muse and Writer, on social media. Note from Angela: “I love hearing from readers and enjoy book club chats. To drop me a note or set up a book club chat, contact me at email@example.com. Let me know if you’d like me to post a quote from your review of this story. If you send me the link and your social media handle, I’ll post it to my social media with a word of gratitude including your name and/or social media handle, too!”
For more about Angela’s books (especially more Montana-inspired romances) and podcast, or to set up a book club chat, please visit her website: http://www.AngelaBreidenbach.com
Facebook Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/AngelaBreidenbachInspirationalSpeakerAuthor
Bestselling author Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. She lives in Oklahoma, near her son and his family, and continues her interests in playing the piano and singing, books, good fellowship, and reality TV in addition to writing. She is an active member of Oklahoma City Christian Fiction Writers, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Christian Authors Network. She has written over fifty books and more than 250 devotionals. Her historical fiction ranges from the Revolutionary War to World War II, from Texas to Vermont. You can find Darlene online at http://www.darlenefranklinwrites.com Cynthia Hickey grew up in a family of storytellers and moved around the country a lot as an army brat. Her desire is to write about real, but flawed characters in a wholesome way that her seven children and five grandchildren can all be proud of. She and her husband live in Arizona where Cynthia is a full-time writer.
Carrie Fancett Pagels is a multi-published award-winning author of Christian historical romance. Twenty-five years as a psychologist didn’t “cure” her overactive imagination! She resides with her family in the Historic Triangle of Virginia, which is perfect for her love of history. Carrie loves to read, bake, bead, and travel – but not all at the same time!
TIFFANY AMBER STOCKTON has been crafting and embellishing stories since childhood. Today she is an award-winning author, speaker, social media consultant, and a freelance website designer who lives with her husband and fellow author, Stuart Vaughn Stockton, in Colorado. They have a daughter and a son and a vivacious Flat-coated retriever named Roxie. Her writing career began as a columnist for her high school and college newspapers. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Historical Romance Writers. Three of her novels have won annual reader’s choice awards, and in 2009, she was voted #1 favorite new author for the Heartsong Presents book club. You can read more about her at her website.
Niki Turner is a novelist, journalist, and blogger. Her first completed manuscript earned second place in the Touched By Love 2009 contemporary category romance contest. She writes for local newspapers and won second place for best agriculture story at the 2013 Colorado Press Association annual convention. She is a coblogger at http://www.inkwellinspirations.com. Niki is the president of the Western Slope chapter of the American Christian Fiction Writers. Connect with Niki on Facebook or Twitter, and visit her website for information on her other books: http://www.nikiturner.net.
ECPA- bestselling author Gina Welborn worked for a news radio station until she fell in love with writing romances. She serves on the American Christian Fiction Writers Foundation Board. Sharing her husband’s love for the premier American sportscar, she is a founding member of the Southwest Oklahoma Corvette Club and a lifetime member of the National Corvette Museum. Gina lives with her husband, three of their five Okie-Hokie children, two rabbits, two guinea pigs, and a dog that doesn’t realize rabbits and pigs are edible. Find her online at http://www.ginawelborn.com! Becca Whitham (WIT-um) is a multi-published author who has always loved reading and writing stories. After raising two children, she and her husband faced the empty nest years by following their dreams: he joined the army as a chaplain, and she began her journey toward publication. Becca loves to tell stories marrying real historical events with modern-day applications to inspire readers to live Christ-reflecting lives. She’s traveled to almost every state in the U.S. for speaking and singing engagements and has lived in Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Oklahoma, and Alaska. She can be reached through her website at http://www.beccawhitham.com
In Seven Medals and a Bride, Bettina enjoys the new inventions on display at the Columbian Expedition. That’s the name of the World’s Fair in 1893. The entire fair grounds were built on a marsh in Chicago and never expected to last more than the six months of the event. All the buildings sparkled a brilliant white, and so it was dubbed The White City. Although the “city” wasn’t expected to last beyond that event, many of the inventions did—so much so that they became household staples. Do you know what some of those inventions are that you use regularly today?
Electricity! The White City was so bright it dazzled the world, but the massive building that powered the lights was plagued by noise and fires all that summer.
The telephone—people were able to place calls in booths inside The White City.
Shredded Wheat—you eat that, right? (Okay, I know it’s not your favorite cereal, but did you know cereal wasn’t common before it was introduced at the Columbian Expedition?)
Coca-cola—it was a huge hit! But back then it was also used as a medicinal in the syrup form. Did your grandmother give you a teaspoon or two for upset stomach? No? Mine did. Coca-cola syrup became a medicinal staple due to excellent marketing.
Cracker Jacks—the original form that debuted was pretty sticky. It wasn’t until a few years later that the company managed to bake the confection into a dryer, less sticky form in order to mass sell it nationwide. But Chicagoans could order it regularly from a little shop in the middle of town before the World’s Fair ever opened.
Little survives today of The White City splendor. A few buildings that have been refurbished and turned into museums stand as a memory. But flip on your lights, open your fridge for a soda, and check your cupboards for that caramel treat to take to the ball game and the spirit of the Columbian Expedition will live on… Psst, be sure to share a little Americana Past with your children.