The Simple Soul of Susan by Noel Branham – REVIEW & GIVEAWAY

About the Book

The-Simple-Sould-of-Susan-200x300 (1)Title: The Simple Soul of Susan

Author: Noel Branham

Genre: Romance, YA, Coming-of-Age, Contemporary

Release Date: October 11, 2017

Susan Combs had long ago found the love of her life. The only problem was the other party still didn’t know he had been found.

Every day Susan saw Calder Hurtz, her next door neighbor and childhood best friend. They always enjoyed the short drive to school down the dusty streets of their small Texas town. She was happy in those perfect moments, for her life at home was most imperfect. The challenging homestead she inhabited was also the favorite subject of local gossip.

But one autumn day she overhears Calder and another boy having a conversation. This occasion of accidental audience sets Susan’s life on an unforeseen path. In the seasons to come, her future will be changed by two hospitalizations, two confessions of love, and one betrayal.

Compulsively readable, The Simple Soul of Susan is an engaging, soul-endearing romance and a mesmerizing debut.

MY THOUGHTS

A nice debut novel by Noel Braham.  The Simple Soul of Susan read pleasantly throughout. There were instances where I felt things were somewhat drawn out, especially in the first quarter of the book. However, once that bridge was crossed I found the story more than enjoyable.

Both main characters were relatable and eventually lovable. Susan had my heart from the beginning as her personality reminded me of myself at a younger age.  She has a beautiful heart that is unfortunately smothered with suffocating insecurities, and a low self-esteem.  Initially I didn’t like Calder’s character, but eventually understood his flaws to be mere traits of youth. th (1)Once Calder’s personality matured, his true soul shone through, and he finally realised which people were most important.  He saw through all of the superficial friendships … people who hung around only for what they could possibly gain. In fact Calder’s soul was bestowed with simplicity, which for a long time he was too proud to acknowledge.

“Neglect is the absence of love , and it can cause more pain than hate.”

Noel perfectly demonstrates the importance of pure, trustworthy, friendship in any relationship. Human love is never perfect, and most important to understand is that there is never instant love … not the lasting kind. But when we combine God’s unconditional love with sincere, trustworthy friendship, we are able to have the most perfect relationship humanly possible.

Susan waited hopefully, most of her life for Calder to notice her the same way she noticed him. But as with all good things, they only happen if they were always meant to be, and in God’s excellent timing. Yes, Susan’s soul was perfectly simple, but so was Calder’s … it just took him longer to realise it.

“I don’t know what I’m trying to say either. But I want to be part of your life. I want you to be a part of mine. I want to sleep closer to you than forty feet away for the rest of my life. I want to fish with you every Sunday afternoon and catch armadillos with you every night until I’m too old to walk. I want to buy you flowers every Valentine’s Day and write my name on the tag, …”

Often young people like Calder who have such a competitive nature that they would do anything to gain an edge or to win, soon realise that they are only competing with themselves.  Hopefully they can manage to change the way they do things before it’s too late.

Simple, uncomplicated, unselfish, is always best, after all Jesus did say, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, if anyone does not receive the kingdom of God like a little child, he will never enter it.” ~ Luke 18:16-17  I suppose that’s because the simple, innocent, and unconditional love of a child is the closest to that of our heavenly Father.

This would be a perfect book for young people experiencing all of these confusing feelings, but also a great book to remind us oldies of the importance of sincere, honest companionship … necessary elements to any relationship.

How about you? What do you think? Are earthly, material qualities and possessions a necessary part of a healthy, loving relationship? I would love to hear from you

I received a complimentary copy of this sweet book from the author via CelebrateLit. I was under no obligation to provide a positive review, and all thoughts are entirely my own.

 

Click here to purchase your copy!

 

About the Author

Noel-Branham-300x300 (1)Born and raised in a small Texas town, Noel Branham started her career in digital communications after graduating with a degree in English. An award-winning communicator, she now writes from her residence in Florida about things closest to the heart: home, family, and love.

Guest Post from Noel Branham

Fictional Romance: A Real Relationship Killer?

You’ve heard it before… All romance novels give readers unrealistic expectations of relationships. Yep. They totally do. But I think most of the time, with life in general, we have unrealistic expectations not only of others but of ourselves. We live in a world where there is always something else to try, buy or satisfy our ever-evolving aspirations of happiness and fulfillment. So here are three things to remember while reading romance novels that will lead to having deep, meaningful, romantic, relationships in real life:

  1. Happiness isn’t fulfilled expectations. When you expect yoursignificant other (SO) to see you and romantically sweep you off your feet while pulling flowers from behind your back and force feeding you chocolates… you may have some unrealistic expectations. Would it be nice? Sure! But there is always something more they could do to make you happy, feeling loved, satisfied, etc. It’s a bottomless pit of desire and implied anticipated actions. We have to realize that no matter how many things we want out of a relationship, we can never receive them all… because realistically, we could never live up to the things expected of us either. Romance is a two-way street.
  2. Happiness is the unexpected, fulfilled. Wait… how can you fulfill something that isn’t expected? You can’t. And that’s what makes it so great. Your SO fills your car up with gas, takes you out for a date for no particular reason, watches that Victorian-era PBS drama with you even though they can’t understand the accents… When we get rid of expectations for ourselves and others we are able to really enjoy the things and people we already have and anything else is simply adding to lovely life that we already possess.
  3. Happiness in relationships is what you make of it. Just not feeling the love anymore after five years together? Was it that you chose the wrong person? Was it something they did? Something you did? Love can be a feeling and an action. Your relationship doesn’t have to be defined by feelings. Feelings fade. They aren’t realistic. They change with time as people change with time because all people change. But actions… actions are what you choose to do on a regular basis. They are a daily intentional choice (made by you) to care for another person. You can control your actions, but not so much your feelings. Funny thing is often times your actions create feelings you never thought you could have.

If you are looking for a romance novel with a bit more realism to test out these principals, check out The Simple Soul of Susan. You can have the realistic expectation that you won’t be disappointed 🙂

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Noel is giving away:

Grand Prize: $50 Amazon Gift Card
First & Second Place Prize: eBook copy of the Simple Soul of Susan!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/cee4/the-simple-soul-of-susan-celebration-tour-giveaway

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, May 10

The Christian Fiction Girl, May 10

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 10

Multifarious, May 11

Remembrancy, May 11

Two Points of interest, May 12

Blogging With Carol, May 12

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, May 13

Inklings and notions, May 13

Kristin’s Book Reviews, May 14

proud to be an autism mom, May 14

Artistic Nobody, May 15 (Spotlight)

Texas Book-aholic, May 15

Mommynificent, May 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 16

The Fizzy Pop Collection, May 17

Janices book reviews, May 17

Pause for Tales, May 18

Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 18

Bibliophile Reviews, May 19

Carpe Diem, May 19

A Baker’s Perspective, May 20

margaret kazmierczak, May 20 (Interview)

Simple Harvest Reads, May 21 (Guest post, Mindy Houng)

Reading is my Super Power, May 21 (Interview)

Christian Author, J.E.Grace, May 22

Bigreadersite, May 22

Reader’s cozy corner, May 23

Josephine’s Thoughts, May 23

‘A Loyal Heart’ by Jody Hedlund (Spotlight and Giveaway)

A-Loyal-Heart-Web-Copy-188x300About the Book

Genre: Adult medieval romance

Release Date: March 6, 2018

He’s taken her as his prisoner. But she’s holding his heart captive. In gaining their freedom, will they lose what matters most?

When Lady Olivia’s castle is besieged, she and her sister are taken captive and held for ransom by her father’s enemy, Lord Pitt. Loyalty to family means everything to Olivia. She’ll save her sister at any cost and do whatever her father asks—even if that means obeying his order to steal a sacred relic from her captor.

As Lord Pitt’s commander, Sir Aldric is in charge of the beautiful but feisty new prisoner. He has his hands full attempting to keep Lady Olivia out of trouble. When Lord Pitt throws her in the dungeon and threatens to hang her for stealing, Aldric conceives a plot to save Olivia’s life—betrothal to him.

Can Olivia give up the prestigious match her father has arranged with a wealthy marquess in order to marry a lowly knight like Aldric? And can Aldric move beyond his past mistakes to embrace love again? When loyalties are tested, they’re thrust into danger that could cost them their love and their lives.

Jody-Hedlund.-Web-Copy-250x300About the Author

Jody Hedlund is the author of over twenty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award.

Jody lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy children, and five spoiled cats. Although Jody prefers to experience daring and dangerous adventures through her characters rather than in real life, she’s learned that a calm existence is simply not meant to be (at least in this phase of her life!).

When she’s not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate.

 

Click here to purchase your copy

 

Guest Post from Jody Hedlund

The Growing Need for Sweet Young Adult Romances

By Jody Hedlund

This past year my youngest daughter turned twelve and entered seventh grade. And she decided that she wanted to read my books.

Of course I was thrilled that she was taking an interest in my writing. But since my adult historical romances are more intense and contain some mature themes, I handed her the young adult series I’ve written.

As she started the first book, I peeked in her room a time or two to ask her how she liked it.

“It’s the best book you’ve ever read, right?” I teased.

“It’s okay,” she replied, teasing me right back.

The true test for how much she liked the series came when she couldn’t put the book down. She hid away in her room and read all day. Then she read the second book the next day and the third book the day after that.

She never did gush over the series. But she didn’t need to. Her serious reading marathon told me all I needed to know! Then when I was writing the fourth book in the series, she asked me if she could read it early before it was published which was another testament to how much she enjoyed the series.

“As long as you promise to say that I’m your favorite author,” I said, teasing her again.

I’m happy to say that she finished A Loyal Heart just as quickly as the others. Although I’m not sure that I’m her favorite author, I’m satisfied that she loved the series.

Even more, I’m thrilled that I could hand her sweet romances full of chivalrous qualities—like courage, sacrifice, honor, and loyalty. As she’s being entertained, she’s learning lessons about character traits that are important in relationships.

My daughter, like other young teens I’ve talked to, really enjoys medieval settings and stories. In some ways, those kinds of stories connect them to the princess fairy tales they used to love when they were little. Let’s face it, even adult readers still love stories about knights and castles and daring damsels!

In a book market for teens that has grown increasingly dark, jaded, and sexual, I only wish I had more to offer my daughter and other young women. It’s my passion to continue providing wholesome, clean romances for teens, books I know will encourage and uplift as well as entertain.

How about YOU? Is there a teen reader you know who needs an alternative to what’s available in the market? I encourage you to gift them with A Loyal Heart. And make sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win the entire series that you can read, pass along, or even gift to your library.

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Jody is giving away a grand prize of An Uncertain Choice, A Daring Sacrifice, For Love & Honor, and A Loyal Heart!!

Click here to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! 

 

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Blog Stops

Among the Reads, March 27

Lighthouse Academy, March 27

Neverending Stories, March 27

Reflections From My Bookshelves, March 28

books n baubles, March 28

Blossoms and Blessings, March 28

By The Book, March 29

Reading Is My SuperPower, March 29

Genesis 5020, March 29

Books, Books, and More Books., March 29

Have A Wonderful Day, March 30

Blogging With Carol, March 30

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, March 30

Cover to Cover and Everything in Between, March 31

Book by Book, March 31

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, March 31

God’s Little Bookworm, April 1

The Christian Fiction Girl, April 1

Mary Hake, April 1

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, April 2

Daysong Reflections, April 2

Novels Corner, April 2

Remembrancy, April 3

proud to be an autism mom, April 3

Texas Book-aholic, April 3

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 4

Janices book reviews, April 4

Jeanette’s Thoughts, April 4

Romances of the Cross, April 5

Carpe Diem, April 5

A Baker’s Perspective, April 5

Ashley’s Bookshelf, April 6

Karen Sue Hadley, April 6

Kaylee’s Kind Of Writes, April 6

Red Headed Book Lady, April 7

Bibliophile Reviews, April 7

Simple Harvest Reads, April 7 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Pursuing Stacie, April 8

Bigreadersite, April 8

margaret kazmierczak, April 8 (interview)

Henry Happens, April 9

Faery Tales Are Real, April 9

Joy of Reading, April 9

 

‘If He Only Knew’ by Michelynn Christy & Brandi Gabriel (Giveaway & Review)

About the Book

Greeting on the railway station. Vintage car on the background.Title: If He Only Knew

Author: Michelynn Christy, Brandi Gabriel

Genre: Historical romance

Release Date: August 19, 2017

It’s 1968, and love is in the air in the small coastal town of Cambridge, California.

Donna Peterson, the preacher’s daughter, has her entire life ahead of her and the future looks promising. But things aren’t as they seem in Cambridge. A tangled web of secrets threatens to destroy the lives of each person involved – Donna, her boyfriend Bobby, and Rick, Bobby’s best friend. Will the truth make them free, or will they lose their friendship forever?

About the Authors

81tyygX8oSL._UX250_Author Michelynn Christy resides in the Midwest and enjoys creating romantic stories that point to Jesus. Her faith in God shines through the pages of her writing. Michelynn’s debut novelette A Christmas to Remember launched in late 2015. While this pen name and genre are somewhat new to her, she has penned over twenty titles under another pseudonym, has won awards for her works and has earned best-selling title status. With that said, all glory goes to God!

orphanBrandi Gabriel is a co-author of twelve Christian fiction books, including this one. Her first solo novel, The Orphan Bride, released in 2016 and she has since added a sequel in the same series. Her goal in writing is to touch readers’ hearts in some special way and to glorify Jesus Christ, her Lord and Saviour.

 

 

 

MY THOUGHTS‘Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,  nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revellers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.’                                          ~ 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 (NKJV)

Two sisters – Pamela, the wild one … and Donna, the good girl everyone would want to claim as being their own.

It’s frightening isn’t it, how circumstances can change things around and mix them up, in such a relatively short period of time?

‘As I watch the drops of rain weave their weary paths and die. I know that I am like the rain there, but for the grace of You go I.’   ~ Simon And Garfunkel

Indeed, but for the grace of God go I!

I would like to say I loved this book, but alas, I did not. However, I did enjoy reading it. In fact, I was unable to put it down. Sounds like a major contradiction doesn’t it?

The plotline could run so close to the lives of so many of us. How easy it is to judge each other, not knowing the true circumstances. Sometimes the pressures of family expectations can be all too much to bear. We end up doing things to keep the peace, that are an outright abomination to Christ. But time will always catch up with us when there is nowhere else to hide from the truth.

‘But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the Lord, and be sure your sin will find you out.’  ~ Numbers 32:23 (NKJV)

Michelynn and Brandi have crafted a story which is sensitive to human failings, while deeply entrenched in emotions. The plot structure has been thoroughly thought out and the characters are plausible. There is also more than a hint within the book that if we throw away the good that He has given to us, sooner or later we will be punished. However, once we have been forgiven … just watch our lives blossom, as God’s forgiveness is sincere and complete.

‘Bobby wondered if this was what it was like to die of a broken heart. The numberless tears, blurred vision, shaking body. And the internal symptoms: throbbing anguish, ugly helplessness, and a pit of sorrow so deep one could fall in and never be able to climb out.’

09B4D12A-ABA0-439F-A1AF-BE6367DB6C92By the end of this book, I had mixed feelings. The book focused on truth, happiness, sadness, betrayal … and great joy. My curiosity had been satisfied, my heart had been broken, my faith was restored.

PS: I got my happy ending eventually.

If you want to read a book that is honest to the core while keeping you turning the pages, then this is the book for you.

I was provided with an Advanced Readers Copy by the author via CelebrateLit. I have never at any stage been expected to provide a positive review, and have not been financially rewarded. All thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.

Guest Post from Michelynn Christy & Brandi Gabriel

Take a step back in time…

If He Only Knew is a novel set in the late 1960s. The book deals with family relationships, loyalty, friendship, love, and loss. The main topic is somewhat controversial in nature, but we won’t mention what it is lest we spoil the story for readers. A similar book was written in a different genre under another name and the story really resonated with readers. We felt compelled to share this story with others who perhaps wouldn’t pick up that particular genre, and that is how this book came about. It may be set in the sixties, but the message is as relevant today as ever. Our prayer is that God will touch readers’ hearts and draw them closer to Him.

Click here to purchase your copy.

Giveaway

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To celebrate their tour, Michelynn and Brandi are giving away the following:

Grand Prize: ONE themed book box, (this will contain small items that relate to the story
1st Place Prize: ONE $25 Amazon gift card,
2nd Place Prize: ONE signed paperback copy of If He Only Knew
3rd Place Prize: ONE signed paperback copy of If He Only Knew!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c601

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Blog Stops:

Bibliophile Reviews, February 17

Reading is my Super Power, February 17

A Greater Yes, February 18

proud to be an autism mom, February 18

Texas Book-aholic, February 19

Inklings and notions, February 19

Radiant Light, February 20

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 20

Christian Author, J.E.Grace Blog, February 21

Janices book reviews, February 21

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 22

A Baker’s Perspective, February 23

Karen Sue Hadley, February 23

Avid Reader Book Reviews, February 24

margaret kazmierczak, February 24 (Interview)

Bigreadersite, February 25

Among the Reads, February 25

Simple Harvest Reads, February 26 (Guest post from Mindy)

Pursuing Stacie, February 27

Red Headed Book Lady, February 27

Maureen’s Musings, February 28

Carpe Diem, February 28

The Fizzy Pop Collection, March 1

Josephines Thoughts, March 2

Have A Wonderful Day, March 2

This Treacherous Journey by Misty M. Beller (Book SPOTLIGHT!!)

 

About the Book

This-Treacherous-Journey2-194x300Title: This Treacherous Journey

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre: Christian historical romance

Release Date: February 6, 2018

Widowed and with child, Emma Malcom is fleeing from the reward offered for her arrest. She’s innocent of the dirty dealings her deceased husband orchestrated, but the angry townspeople didn’t stop to listen to her defense before she narrowly escaped with her life. Now, she and her twin brother, Joseph, must battle the mountain wilderness of the Rockies to reach Canada and the clean start she craves. But when a fall from the rocky cliff leaves Joseph wounded and weak, could the strange mountain man they encounter be God’s gift to see them to safety?

Simeon Grant makes bad choices. His deceased wife and twin babies are lost to him now because of his reckless decisions, and the penance he pays by living alone in this mountain wilderness is only a small piece of what he thinks he deserves. When a city woman, heavy with child, appears on his doorstep with her injured brother, her presence resurrects the memories he’s worked so hard to forget. And when she asks for his help to travel deeper into the mountain country, he can’t help wonder why God would force him to relive the same mistakes he’s already suffered through. Or maybe taking these two to safety could be the way to redeem himself.

But when their travels prove more treacherous than he imagined, Simeon finds himself pressing the limits of his ability to keep Emma and her brother safe. Can he overcome the past that haunts him to be the man she needs? Will Emma break through the walls around Simeon’s heart before it’s too late, or will the dangers of these mountains be the end of them all?

 

Click here to purchase your very own copy!

 

About the Author

Misty-300x271Misty M. Beller writes romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and daughters now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Writing is a dream come true for Misty. Her family–both immediate and extended–is the foundation that holds her secure in that dream. Learn more at http://www.MistyMBeller.com.

 

Guest post from Misty M. Beller

The Treasure of Family

I’m an old-fashioned girl. Always have been. And growing up on the family farm, with grandparents in the old farmhouse next door and cousins living all around us, I can’t imagine my life without family. Now that I’m married with three daughters of my own, I treasure my family even more—both immediate and extended!

In my books, I tend to weave the importance of family into each story somewhere, and This Treacherous Journey is no exception! I first wrote the prologue as a standalone short story, the account of the birth of the hero from another of my books (Reuben Scott from The Lady and the Mountain Call).

It was the story of a father, grieving the loss of his wife and feeling as if he has no choice but to give his newborn twins to another family to raise. I wrote this part of the story a week after my third daughter was born, and I cried buckets through the writing! The story has an even stronger emotional connection for me, because my younger brother and sister were both adopted into our family. I can’t imagine their birth parents having the courage to give them up for adoption unless they knew without a doubt it was the best choice for those sweet babies.

So, as you read This Treacherous Journey, it’s my prayer that you’ll take a moment to cherish your own family. Remember all the special moments. Spend extra time with those you love. Relish the treasures God placed in your life!

Blog Stops

Bibliophile Reviews, February 3

Christian Author, J.E.Grace, February 3

History, Mystery & Faith, February 4

A Greater Yes, February 4

margaret kazmierczak, February 4 (Interview)

Kathleen Denly, February 5

Blogging With Carol, February 5

Faithfully Bookish, February 6

Books n baubles, February 6

Mommynificent, February 7

Connie’s History Classroom, February 7

Reading Is My SuperPower, February 8

The Fizzy Pop Collection, February 8

proud to be an autism mom, February 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 9

Mary Hake, February 9

Blossoms and Blessings, February 10

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 10

Texas Book-aholic, February 11

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, February 11

Zerina Blossom’s Books, February 12

Bigreadersite, February 12

Kat’s Corner Books, February 13

Janices book reviews, February 13

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 14

Carpe Diem, February 14

A Baker’s Perspective, February 15

Karen Sue Hadley, February 15

Pursuing Stacie, February 16

Simple Harvest Reads, February 16 (Guest post from Mindy)

Giveaway

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To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away a grand prize of 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/c8e4

SPOTLIGHT and GIVEAWAY! “21 Days of Love” ~ Compiled by Kathy Ide

♥About the Book♥

21-Days-of-Love-741x1024Title: 21 Days of Love

Compiled by: Kathy Ide

Genre: Non-fiction, Devotional

Release Date: January 1, 2016

Love can be found in many treasured relationships: boyfriend-girlfriend, husband-wife, parent-child … with a special friend, teacher, or pet … in the kindness of a stranger. We even have a national holiday to celebrate love.

The greatest love ever known is God’s abundant love for us, His children. And He often demonstrates that perfect love through imperfect people.

These stories represent all kinds of love. Woven through each story is the sustaining hand of our loving heavenly Father. On Valentine’s Day—and every day—whether your life is chocolates and flowers or loneliness and pain … let these stories fill your heart with hope, peace, and most important, love.

Click here to purchase your copy.

♥About the Author♥

Kathy-Ide-rectangle-1-681x1024Compiler and editor KATHY IDE has been a published author since 1989. She has written fiction and nonfiction books and is the author of Proofreading Secrets of Best-Selling Authors. She has ghostwritten ten nonfiction books and a series of five novels. She also writes columns of writing and editing tips for blogs and newsletters. Kathy makes her home in Orange County, California.

♥Guest Post from Kathy Ide♥

Kick off the new year with love!

21 Days of Love: Stories that Celebrate Treasured Relationships,book 3 in the Fiction Lover’s Devotional series, contains short fiction stories about all kinds of love. Boyfriend-girlfriend. Husband-wife. Parent-child. Teacher-student. Even love for pets and showing love to strangers. Since the greatest love ever known is God’s abundant love for us, His children, the sustaining hand of our loving heavenly Father is woven throughout. Each story is written by a different author and is followed by a brief Life Application in which the author shares how the fictional story relates to our day-to-day lives.

21 Days of Love has chapters written by well-known, best-selling novelists, including Susan May Warren, Sherry Kyle, Renae Brumbaugh, and New York Timesbest-selling author Cindy Woodsmall. There are also stories by writers you may not have heard of. At the end of each chapter is an author bio that gives some background information about the author. So if you really like a story you read, you can find out what else that author has written. You may just find some new names to add to your favorites list.

And if you haven’t read much Christian fiction, this devotional will give you a small taste of several different authors and genres, without having to commit to reading an entire novel. You might just discover that you actually love Christian fiction!

21 Days of Love, a finalist in the 2017 Selah awards, makes a perfect Valentine’s Day gift for friends and loved ones.

♥Giveaway♥

9c256d7d-7ddf-40e4-aa33-675d45ee9094-676x1024To celebrate her tour, Kathy is giving away a

2 Grand Prizes of a full set of the 21 Days Hardback books
3 first place prizes of a hardback copy of 21 Days of Love
4 second place prizes of an eBook copy of 21 Days of Love!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c8e3

21-Days-of-Love-Template-copy

♥Blog Stops♥

Bibliophile Reviews, February 10

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 11

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 12

A Greater Yes, February 12

Captive Dreams Window, February 13

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, February 13

Mary Hake, February 14

Blossoms and Blessings, February 14

Bigreadersite, February 15

margaret kazmierczak, February 15 (Interview)

Janices book reviews, February 16

Christian Bookaholic, February 17

Reading is my Super Power, February 17 (Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 18

Carpe Diem, February 19

A Baker’s Perspective, February 20

Simple Harvest Reads, February 21 (Guest post from Mindy)

Pursuing Stacie, February 22

proud to be an autism mom, February 23

‘Lawfully Loved’ by Jenna Brandt (My REVIEW)

About the Book

LAWFULLY LOVED by Jenna BrandtJake “Bullseye” Bolton is a deputy sheriff out of Abilene, Texas, tasked with tracking down the infamous Grimes Brothers. When he is stranded outside Rockwood Springs, he encounters Rebecca Caldwell, whose family owns the local livery. Still healing from a broken past, Jake resists the strong attraction he feels for the prairie darling.

Rebecca has been too busy taking care of her family to think about love and marriage. At least that’s what she tells herself, but deep down, she knows she is getting to the age she has to make a choice whether or not to pursue love. When Jake enters her life, she wonders if she is finally ready to do just that.

Sparks fly as they get to know each other over the course of a weekend during the town’s anniversary celebration. But once Jake can travel again, he must continue his search for the brothers. Shortly after leaving, he realizes the robbers are on their way to Rockwood Springs. Will Jake be able to get back to Rebecca and the town in time to save the people he has grown to care for? And when it’s time for Jake to return to his life in Abilene, will he decide new love is worth fighting for?

The Lawkeepers is a multi-author series alternating between historical westerns and contemporary westerns featuring law enforcement heroes that span multiple agencies and generations. Join bestselling authors Annie Boone, Jenna Brandt, Kate Cambridge and Lorana Hoopes as they weave captivating, sweet stories of romance and suspense between the lawkeepers — and the women who love them. 

The Lawkeepers is a world like no other; a world where lawkeepers and heroes are honored with unforgettable stories, characters, and love.

** Note: Each book in The Lawkeepers series is a standalone book, a mini-series of sorts, and you can read them in any order.

My Thoughts

COUNTRY STYLE COFFEE MUGBy now it’s probably obvious that I am a sucker for sweet, clean romance. I love happy endings, and Jenna Brandt never disappoints (well, mostly not). The more I read and write myself, the easier it becomes to predict endings to stories, usually half-way through the book. Although I did pretty much have this one pegged (or so I thought), there was always that little niggle of a doubt that maybe it would end differently. I was concerned that if Jake didn’t return to Rockwood Springs, Rebecca may settle for the rude, arrogant Andy Wilson, even if just for the sake of security. There is also the question of faith and a relationship with God. Rebecca cannot marry someone who does not have the same relationship with her Heavenly Father as she does.  Jake’s relationship with God is in tatters. Can he change? Will Rebecca compromise? You’ll just have to buy this beautiful book and find out for yourself.

I love the characters of Rebecca and Jake, both are strong, colourful individuals. Also Lydia as the adorable, but scheming little sister, made me smile. I am looking forward to reading the other books in this series by Annie Boone, Kate Cambridge, and Lorana Hoopes, as well as anything else Jenna Brandt creates.

I was provided with a free copy of this book by the author, however I was not under any obligation to provide a positive review. I have not been rewarded financially for this review, and all opinions and thoughts are my own.

You may purchase your own copy right HERE

About the Author

IMG_8297Taken from Jenna’s website: CLICK HERE

My name is Jenna Brandt and I am a historical fiction author and my books span from the Victorian to Western to WWI eras with elements of romance, suspense and faith. I have been an avid reader since I could hold a book and started writing stories almost as early. I have been published in several newspapers and magazines as well as edited for multiple papers. I graduated with my Bachelor of Arts in English from Bethany College and was the Editor-in-Chief of my college newspaper. I’m a contributor to The Mighty Website, The Girls Who Write VLog as well as a contributor and curator for the Novel PASTime Website. My first blog was published on Yahoo Parenting and The Grief Toolbox as well as featured on the ABC News and Good Morning America websites. I am a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) Romance Writers Association (RWA) and Melissa Storm’s All Access Engine.

Writing is my passion but I also enjoy cooking, watching lots of movies while I write, engaging in social media and spending time with my three young daughters and husband where we live in the Central Valley of California. I am also active in my local church where I serve on the first impressions team and write for the church’s creative team.

618WtVO0O1L._UX250_Although I haven’t read the other books in this series as yet, I am certain they will be equally entertaining.

At present each book within the series is available as an eBook on Amazon for between .98 cents to $1.00

Why not pick them all up while they are being sold at a reduced price?

 

Her Good Girl ~ Elaine Stock (Book Spotlight & Giveaway!)

About the Book

estock-72dpi-1500x2000-225x300Title: Her Good Girl

Author: Elaine Stock

Genre: Family Life, Contemporary fiction, Coming-of-age story of a whole family

Release Date: January 22, 2018

Sometimes digging deep frees you to bloom.

Sadie Tremont’s will to survive is killing her. Almost 18, she’s battled one mysterious illness after another. Tara-Lynn, her mom, insists she’s the only one with the ultimate cure. Sadie can’t depend on her dad to help when his only interest is underground caving. Her grandmother too easily counts on God to help, but Sadie has stopped waiting for miracles. Callie, a café owner and new friend, might help but can she be trusted?

Then there’s Sky, Sadie’s new boyfriend who offers a sliver of joy, peace, and self-respect. When he schemes that the only way for Sadie to be happy is to escape with him from her native West Virginia hills by killing Tara-Lynn, she’s trapped.

She can’t partner with Sky to hurt the mom who has hurt her for years . . . or can she?

When tragedy strikes and threatens Sadie’s dad’s life and the shaky ground the Tremont family stands on, will they pull together or give in to the weakened earth beneath their feet?

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Elaine-StockElaine Stock is the author of Always With You, which released in January 2016 and has won the 2017 Christian Small Publishers Association Book of the Year Award in fiction. And You Came Along, a novella, released in December 2017. Her novels fuse romance, family drama and faith in a clean fiction style. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, and Women’s Fiction Writers Association, and contributes to the international “Happy Sis Magazine” and “InD’tale Magazine.” In addition to Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads, she hangs out on her active six-year-old blog, Everyone’s Story, dedicated to uplifting and encouraging all readers through the power of story and hope.

Born in Brooklyn, NY, Elaine has now been living in upstate, rural New York with her husband for more years than her stint as an NYC gal. She enjoys long walks down country roads, visiting New England towns, and of course, a good book.

Guest Post from Elaine Stock

How to Bloom Against the Odds by Elaine Stock

Show tunes warm my heart and create a happy buzz in my mind. Ever since I can recall, I adored musicals, whether live performances or movies. Throw in amazing choreography and I’m definitely a happy camper! Hmm. I’m thinking you’re probably wondering why I’m kicking off a blog tour about my novel, Her Good Girl, a coming-of-age story about a whole family against the odds, chatting about actors belting out foot-tapping songs?

her-good-girl-pic-1-300x225Here’s another favorite of mine: Liza Minnelli. Remember her from the movie Cabaret? A few months back I ran across this quote from her: Reality is something you rise above. These words hit home, zinged my soul. Life is not about what you’re dished out, but what you do with it instead. See, I was born into a troubled family. My mother slipped deep into the prison of mental illness; my father worked 8 days a week. Throw in a few other dysfunctional barbs and… well… that was my beginning. Is it my present? Will it be my future?

In Her Good Girl, centres on Sadie, a girl on the cusp of becoming a woman. Her life revolves around her mother’s abusive Munchausen syndrome by proxy (MBP) until Sadie discovers a way out… or is it an escape to something deeper and worse by the hands of someone else?

This is what I wrote in the “Author’s Note” section of Her Good Girl:

I first became aware of Munchausen By Proxy (MBP) several years ago when I read an article about what I thought was an emotional disturbance. Research shows that this is maltreatment (abuse and/or neglect) when a person—usually a parent—seeks emotional fulfillment by inflicting an illness on another, often one’s child, and often resulting in death. Recent cases such as the 1996 arrest of Kathy Bush for making her then nine-year-old daughter, Jennifer sick; the 2014 death of five-year-old Garnett by his mother Lacy Spears, and the recent Baby Jax case of a woman, Jessica Valik, who tampered with her son’s feeding tube, are one too many. Yet, I have not written about this type of tragedy and sadness to become a sensationalist.

Stories about the complexities of families draw my attention. I strive to tell stories that inspire others that, through the love and grace of God, one can move forward, families can heal, that there is hope and that there is no reason to go back. Goodness can and does, happen to troubled families.

While my mother didn’t suffer from MBP, she was controlled by the terrors of paranoid schizophrenia (I touched upon this as well in Her Good Girl, although, again, it was not autobiographical). I didn’t know about my mother’s condition until I turned 18 and she was first diagnosed at that time. However, what I did know during my childhood was that this was my family’s “normal.” Yet, it still didn’t feel right.

I wanted to rise above this emotional feeling that felt like a trap.

Enter God.

Actually, God and I clicked when I was six (that’s as far back as I can remember His grasp on me). But, it wasn’t until I was baptized into the Christian faith in my early 20s did I start feeling as if I was indeed beginning to rise above my circumstances.

her-good-girl-pic-2-300x267Without Him, my life would be empty and meaningless.

Now, I feel as if I have a future to look forward to. All my novels will not necessarily be reflective of mental illness, but I hope my readers will see in Her Good Girl that by holding God’s hands tightly a family can heal and one can move forward, can live. Or, as one of the major themes of the novel emphasizes: Sometimes digging deep frees you to bloom.

Giveaway

099280d0-8d20-48f2-ac57-3caa06ce9ea9-300x300To celebrate her tour, Elaine is giving away a grand prize of 1 Tote + 1 print (US only) or eBook of Her Good Girl, Always With You, and And You Came Along.

Three others will win 1 eBook of Her Good Girl each!!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c6d0

 

Blog Stops

Reading Is My SuperPower, February 1

Mary Hake, February 1

Bibliophile Reviews, February 2

Inklings and notions, February 2

Blogging With Carol, February 3

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A Reader’s Brain, February 5

Texas Book-aholic, February 6

Carpe Diem, February 7

A Baker’s Perspective, February 8

Multifarious, February 9

A Greater Yes, February 10

Avid Reader Book Reviews, February 10

Power of Words, February 11 (spotlight)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 11

Janices book reviews, February 12

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 12

margaret kazmierczak, February 13 (Interview)

Simple Harvest Reads, February 13 (Guest post from Mindy)

Pursuing Stacie, February 14

Bigreadersite, February 14