BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Chapter Book, Kiddie Lit

Tyrone the Terrible by Jan Lis with Giveaway

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About the Book

Book:  Tyrone the Terrible

Author: Jan Lis

Genre:  Children’s Chapter Book

Release Date: March, 2020 TYRONE-COVER-FINAL-194x300

Tyrone is the skinniest chameleon in the swamp. No one wants him on their team. After going on a fitness program, Tyrone gets carried away with his new self and terrorizes his friends in Gnarly Tree Bend until he meets Sly, the meanest gator in the bayou. Looks like Tyrone is gumbo.

The moral of this story? Someone is always bigger and badder than you, so you’d best make friends along the way.

TYRONE THE TERRIBLE is a bullying tale. The feisty chameleon picks on his bayou buddies before meeting his match. In the process, he learns the value of friends and family and how actions have consequences.

This delightful story is filled with swampy animal characters with a distinctly southern voice – not quite Brer Rabbit, but a good deep-south feel.

 

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

My Review

What a fun book for children Jan Lis has written and illustrated. Tyrone the Terrible is a book younger children will enjoy having read aloud to them, complete with its Southern dialect and charm. Older children, 9-12, will enjoy the short chapters with the black and white animal illustrations (even the possum looks cute, if that’s possible!). They will enjoy trying to emulate the different animal voices to produce the Voice of the Old South. Children that like Brer Rabbit and Brer Fox will conjure up great mental images of animals that live together and impart life lessons. Discussion questions follow. I am definitely a fan of the animals in this bayou. I wonder if more cute creatures will need swamp critter help as they grow up?

Tyrone the Terrible
I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit, plus I purchased my own copy. The complimentary copy in no way affects my opinions which are solely my own.

 

My Rating

5 Stars – Superior – Hits My Reading Sweet Spot

 

About the Author

Jan Lis is a south Florida writer and artist.  Living in this multicultural area, Jan utilizes Jan-Lis-199x300these diverse cultural influences in her stories.  Jan fills her children’s books with spunky characters and rich imagery, bringing to her stories and illustrations the same vivid quality found in her fine art paintings.

Jan attended the Cleveland Institute of Art, has a degree from Ohio University’s School of Fine Art, and took post-graduate writing at Case-Western Reserve. She established her writing as a journalist contributing articles to publications such as the Miami Herald, and the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, and worked as Fine Arts Editor and Columnist for the Florida Arts Gazette.

Jan Lis is an established artist who has exhibited and won awards in many of the country’s top Annual Exhibitions including: The Butler Institute of American Art, the San Diego Watercolor Society, and the Piedmont Biennial at the Mint Museum.  She is represented in corporate and private collections including: the State of Florida Art In Public Buildings Program, the Brevard County Florida Art in Public Places Program, and the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, NC.

Jan is represented by agent Cyle Young, Hartline Literary Agency, and is member of the
Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

 

More from Jan

How I first met Tyrone was an interesting adventure in itself. One day, a curious little chameleon climbed up on a stone, and watched me as I went for my afternoon swim. Day after day his little head popped up every time I entered the pool. Then he scrambled up onto his rock to watch me swim. Over the course of the summer I saw this skinny fellow gradually mature into quite an impressive chameleon. Sometime during the summer he gained the name Tyrone, and the story was born. Much of the action in Tyrone The Terrible takes place around Gnarly Tree, located along the bayou. While the setting of the story is fiction, the tree is not. My Gnarly tree is a venerable old Banyan, located along the pathway near my home. These days I give it a nod whenever I pass by. I loved writing the Tyrone characters, and the southern feel of the dialogue. It’s a story you just have to read out loud, and have fun with.

 

Blog Stops

For Him and My Family, June 1

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 2

Vicky Sluiter, June 3 (Author Interview)

Older & Smarter?, June 4

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, June 5

Texas Book-aholic, June 6

Simple Harvest Reads, June 7 (Author Interview)

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, June 8

deb’s Book Review, June 9

Inklings and notions, June 10

My Devotional Thoughts, June 11 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, June 12

Splashes of Joy, June 13

Artistic Nobody, June 14 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jan is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon Gift Certificate and a signed copy of Tyrone The Terrible!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/fc14/tyrone-the-terrible-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

 

 

 

BLOG, Real Life-- Not a book, Reposted From a friend of Becky Lewis's

Congratulations Celebrate Lit on 5 Years!!

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Most of this post is not original with me, but rather is reblogged from Chautona Havig, one of the tireless leaders of our wonderful group called Celebrate Lit. You as my blog readers may notice that a vast majority of my blogs have mentioned Celebrate Lit as being the source for my books, as well as a  “Celebrate Lit tour” of said books. More often than not, there are prized associated with the books on a Celebrate Lit tour. Am I excited about Celebrate Lit as a company? You bet! But let me turn you over to Chautona, who is an author herself. She will explain all about this  great company even better.

 

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Chautona Havig:

As often happens, college classes sparked an idea—a desire. Authors needed exposure for their books. Word of mouth goes so far, but what if more “mouths” could be rallied to spread the word about great books?

Sandy Barela took all she’d learned in the marketing classes and began with one blog imagestour to help a friend promote a new release. Little did she know then that five years later, she would have hundreds of bloggers helping her promote authors’ books. Little did she know then that she’d tour hundreds and hundreds of books. That first blog tour gave birth to a fledgling company that since then has featured every genre in the clean and Christian realm. From rom-com to women’s fiction, historical romance to contemporary, sci-fi to fantasy, not to mention nonfiction, they’ve done it all.

Celebrate Lit

Note: links may be affiliate links that provide me with a small commission at no extra expense to you.

Congratulations to Celebrate Lit on 5 Exciting Years

In the past few years, Celebrate Lit Publicity has expanded first to include Celebrate Lit Publishing and more recently, #BecauseFiction Magazine, an online magazine also dedicated to helping authors and readers connect in one, easy to find place.

Each tour reaches thousands of potential readers who are already looking for their next read. This benefits authors and readers both. Authors know that people don’t just see a picture of their book and hope that’s enough to capture the interest of their ideal readers. Instead, those readers are exposed to other readers’ readers’ impressions of that book. All the benefits of an Amazon review (which authors receive, too) but delivered directly to potential readers.

Even more than that, Celebrate Publicity takes those reviews and advertises them where those readers congregate to ensure that even blogger/reviewers with a small following have their reviews shared beyond their little sphere of influence. The Celebrate lit team devotes dozens of hours to each tour to ensure the best success they can give it, and all for an extremely affordable price.

Christian authors love one more thing about it.

Knowing that the team prays over every book toured with the company reminds authors of Who controls not only the outcome of the tour but the company as well. Everything the Celebrate Lit Team does is through careful, prayerful consideration.

So, just what is a blog tour?

You’ve probably seen one here. It’s just information about a book, a reader’s perspective on the story or content, a post from the author to you, and a list of other readers who are featuring that book. It’s a great idea to visit at least a few of the books to get a balanced perspective on it, but it’s an even better idea to go to all of them.

Why?

Because most tours also include a giveaway. Visiting each blog gives each visitor the opportunity to gain more entries into the giveaway, especially if one leaves a comment.

You can discover all the books on tour today by visiting Celebrate Lit to see what books are on tour this week or by visiting the Celebrate Lit Community Forum on Facebook.

From all the authors and bloggers blessed by Sandy and her team at Celebrate Lit, Happy Anniversary! And may you have fifty more years to serve the Lord through this ministry.

celebrate lit

BLOG, NetGalley, Waterbrook-Multnomah

Being Known, #2 Haven Makers by Robin Jones Gunn

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About the Book

Title: Being Known

Series: #2 Haven Makers

Author: Robin Jones Gunn

Genre: Inspirational Contemporary

After her mom passed away, Jennalyn was in the midst of moving, having a baby, and helping her husband work toward his dream job. At the time, she thought she processed the shock and loss, but only now that Jennalyn has two small children, a lovely new home, a lucrative side hustle with her art, and a husband who is always working does she feel the full impact of the loss.

Enter an old boyfriend who knew Jennalyn well and who shares many fond memories of her mom. Jennalyn begins to doubt her marriage and all her other life choices ever since her mom passed away. It takes the power of truth, close friends who know her well, and a series of choices at the heart level before Jennalyn can surface from the confusion and see with clarity where her life is headed.

 

My Review

I’ve never read a novel like this one. The story is almost a “reality novel,” as true-to-life as possible, about the lives of five young women. Most of the ladies are married with children. This narrative centers mostly on Jennalynn and her marriage to Joel, but it also highlights the other women, especially Tess. While second in a series, the book stands alone well.
I loved how Jennalynn, Christy, and their friends have developed a very special Christian support group. As such they are not only physically present for each other, but help guard each other emotionally and spiritually.

“Love grows in fields of grace, not in ruts of shame.”
Jennalyn finds her relationship with Joel on slippery ground as a result of his long work hours and her not being willing to confide her innermost issues.
While the book isn’t “preachy,” its goal is to teach and guide through some of the life issues that occur. It could possibly be used in counseling, and every young Christian wife should read it to gain real insight in how to make wise choices.
About the edible oils…Many will argue that NO oils should be ingested.
Notable Quotables:

“Love grows in fields of grace, not in ruts of shame.”

“...your word for the year was like
“…your word for the year was like a love note from the Lord.”
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and Waterbrook-Multnomah. This in no way influences my opinions, which are solely my own.

 

My Rating

4 Stars – Excellent – I Would Recommend This Book

 

About the Author

41954

ROBIN JONES GUNN is the much loved author of over 100 books with more than 5.5 million copies of her titles sold worldwide. Her Father Christmas books have been made into 3 Hallmark movies. Her popular Christy Miller series now continues in Christy & Todd: The Married Years and The Baby Years. Robin’s novels and non-fiction works have received multiple awards and are a favorite with book clubs and study groups. Robin and her husband have a grown son and daughter and live in Hawaii.

BLOG, New Author

The Trouble with Tulips, #1 Hometown Holiday Heartstrings by Emily Botrous

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About the Book

Title: The Trouble with Tulips

Series: #1 Hometown Holiday Heartstrings

Author: Emily Dana Botrous

Publisher: Independently Published

Released: May 2020

He prefers plants to people. She’s a black thumb. Can love bloom?
Kim is stagnating in her hometown, like a dying flower. When her mother asks her to create a flower garden to enter into a local competition, Kim decides it’ll be her last big hurrah before skipping town for a new start. But with her wilted gardening skills, she can’t pull it off alone, especially since her mom wants tulips. The only person who might be able to help is her brother’s best friend. Trouble is, she’s liked him for years despite his prickly personality, and he never noticed.

Jake has met with a lot of loss in life. The only thing he can keep alive is a plant. Besides his friend Dusty, Jake has no use for anyone, including God. So when Dusty’s sister asks him for help, he turns her down flat—until he realizes he needs her help, too. Trading tulips and time for business advice, Jake finds there’s more to Kim than he’s ever noticed before. Too bad the only way to keep her safe is to keep her out of his heart.

When things get weedy, Kim must decide whether to dig in her roots or move on. Can Jake trust that God is enough to bridge the distance between the pain in the past and the promise of the future?

My Review

I really liked this book as the issues the protagonists had to resolve are so basic to many young people. Some people never overcome this personal baggage during a lifetime. Kim Williams and Jake Dunn are a couple that just can’t seem to get it together in order to be together. Emily Botrous has penned a very wise and insightful tale of hurt, beauty, and romance in her The Trouble with Tulips.

The Trouble with Tulips 1

Kim Williams has a very marketable MBA, but due to a years-long crush
on her brother’s best friend, Jake, she has moved home where no full-time jobs are available. Jake refuses to let go of guilt over his mother’s and brother’s death. This causes him to become surly and morose to close out any who would get close to him. I often wondered just what Kim saw in him.
Many readers will be able to identify with Kim and Jake. Kim can’t believe she is worth anything to anybody unless Jake sits up and takes notice. Kim needs to learn that God alone can fill the true void in her heart. Botrous does a great job, without preaching, of placing Kim in conversations that point her to begin listening to “The Voice of Truth.”
Jake is an even tougher nut to crack, though. Closed off from people, he is convinced anyone he cares about will meet disaster. He dumped his trust in God long ago, when beloved family members died.

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My favorite secondary character was Jason. He figures so strongly into the arc of this couple’s life. As their boss, he cares for them like a father. He is gracious, helpful, and insightful. Jason is also protective of his workers. God placed Jake and Kim in a great work environment, even though Jake is leaving to branch out on his own and Kim is only part-time.
I cried along with Kim until she finally finds her true worth. “Only God can make you understand your real value. And it’s to Him and no one else.”

Other notable quotes:

“The only thing he could take proper care of was plants.”

“Love’s worth the risk. God sure thought so.”

“But wasn’t she, by insulting herself—God’s very own creation—indirectly insulting God?”

“Stop actin’ God, son.”

“You want to be all-powerful to the ones you love, but only God can be that. Us? We have to trust those we love to His hands.”
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. This in no way influenced my opinions, which are solely my own.

 

My Rating 

5 Stars – Superior – Hits My Reading Sweet Spot 

 

About the Author

18860227Emily Dana Botrous lives in San Diego, California with her husband and their four children. She lived in 10 states before she settled on the West Coast where she plans to stay for awhile. She started writing short stories at age 10 and studied English in college. The only thing she enjoys more than writing is motherhood. While there are a lot of things that matter to Emily, nothing is more important to her than Jesus Christ. It is her goal to point anyone who reads her writing toward Him. When Emily isn’t writing, she enjoys cooking, long walks, music, and playing with her kids. “A New Shade of Paint” is her first book.

BLOG, Favorite, Purchase

No Filter, #1 Barks and Beans Cafe Cozy Mysteries by Heather Day Gilbert

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About the Book

Title: No Filter

Series: The Barks and Beans Cafe Mystery Series

Author: Heather Day Gilbert

Publisher: WoodHaven Press

Released: May 2020

BOOK ONE in the ALL-NEW BARKS & BEANS CAFE cozy mystery series!!

Welcome to the Barks & Beans Cafe, a quaint place where folks pet shelter dogs while enjoying a cup of java…and where murder sometimes pays a visit.

Fed up with her go-nowhere job, newly single Macy Hatfield moves back to her small hometown in West Virginia. She joins forces with her brother Bo in his crazy new venture—the Barks & Beans Cafe, which caters to dog lovers and coffee drinkers alike.

When a golf instructor is murdered at the nearby spiritual center, Macy winds up adopting his Great Dane. Just after Macy finds a mysterious message sewn under the dog’s collar, her Dane is dognapped. She launches into a relentless search for her newfound canine friend, but along the way, she digs up a cruel and confident killer.

Join siblings Macy and Bo Hatfield as they sniff out crimes in their hometown…with plenty of dogs along for the ride! The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series features a small town, an amateur sleuth, and no swearing or graphic scenes.

The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series in order:
Book 1: No Filter
Book 2: Iced Over

My Review

I am excited to share with you a new cozy mystery series by Heather Day Gilbert. While I love cozies, I start a new one with much trepidation. Will there be sex on the page or a lot of innuendoes? Will there be bad language? I am thrilled to say No Filter , #1 Barks & Beans Café Cozy Mysteries, fits every category I am looking for in a cozy:
1. Small town setting
2. No bad language
3. No sex
4. Amateur sleuth
5. Murder not presented in gory manner
6. Bit of Romance (my addition)

No Filter 2

In No Filter, we find Macy and Bo Hatfield, unlucky-at-love siblings who decide to retreat to their small town origins, Lewisburg, West Virginia. Not giving up, they open up a coffee shop combo therapy dog petting area. Now Gilbert has my full attention, and the shop gets its dogs from the local shelter, to give the dogs for adoption more publicity. Looking up Lewisburg, WV, right now on my GPS. Think it would be a great place to live.
But maybe not. There are the “haves” and the “haves snot.” (Imagine the “haves” looking down their noses at the “snots.”) The mingling of these two classes at the local spiritual center-country club leads to murder, art fencing, and a wealth of possible culprits. I felt there were a lot of characters to keep straight, but we will see many of these players again in book 2, Iced Over, and book 3, Fair Trade.

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Only one complaint- I am seriously considering whether people can be both coffee connoisseurs and tea aficionados at same time! I’d be surprised if Great Danes don’t become popular after this series. I loved the sibling loyalty and strong bond. I enjoyed seeing the set-up of possible romances (I already have my “teams” going)! I even enjoyed seeing unlikely characters succeed to benefit the town. But watch out! Gilbert manages to find a way to leave you hanging by a thread!
I need to cool down. Bring on Iced Over!!
Quotes to Note:

“No, I’d rather have both feet on the ground than feel them getting sucked in with ocean water where fish pooped, sharks lurked, and currents could catch and kill you.”

“She seemed to be a wealth of information, and she had no hesitation in sharing it.”

My Rating

5 Stars- Superior- Hit My Reading Sweet Spot (and I can’t wait for the sequels!)

About the Author

HEATHER DAY GILBERT, an ECPA Christy award finalist and Grace award winner, writes contemporary mysteries and Viking historicals. Her novels feature small towns, family relationships, and women who aren’t afraid to protect those they love. Publisher’s Weekly gave Heather’s Viking historical Forest Child a starred review, saying it is “an 7232683engaging story depicting timeless human struggles with faith, love, loyalty, and leadership.”

Find Heather on Pinterest (heatherdgilbert), Instagram (@heatherdaygilbert), Twitter (@heatherdgilbert), and Facebook (heatherdaygilbert). You can find all her books at heatherdaygilbert.com.

 

 

Bethany House, BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, NetGalley

Storing Up Trouble, #3 American Heiresses by Jen Turano with Giveaway

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About the Author

Book:  Storing Up Trouble

Author: Jen Turano

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: May 6, 2020

When Beatrix Waterbury’s train is disrupted by a heist, scientist Norman Nesbit comes to Storing-Up-Trouble-194x300her aid. After another encounter, he is swept up in the havoc she always seems to attract—including the attention of the men trying to steal his research—and they’ll soon discover the curious way feelings can grow between two very different people in the midst of chaos.

 

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

 

My Review

Jen Turano can actually take the most unlikely character and turn him from someone you absolutely loathe into someone you hope wins the girl.
In Storing Up Trouble, #3 American Heiresses, I had little trouble liking outspoken, but sweet and caring socialite Beatrix Waterbury. On her way to stay with her aunt Gladys Huttleston in Chicago, she gets in the middle of a train robbery and is rescued by Norman Nesbit, a noted eccentric scientist who can only see the world through his ingrown eyeballs. If the subject relates to his research, he can pontificate for hours, but he doesn’t know where his sister is currently visiting or anything about his nieces and nephews. Did I mention he is rude, eccentric, and condescending towards women? Truly a jerk in the first degree. Priding himself on logic, he jumps to a lot of wrong conclusions about everyone, but especially Miss Waterbury. I am amazed by his growth, once he decides he wants to pursue Beatrix.

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Which is in and of itself funny. The laughs begin in earnest as this society man who eschews being such, has to learn how to behave in polite company.
But if that wasn’t funny enough, Aunt Gladys and her girls are a total hoot. I was quite worried when they decided to improve Theo.

The most somber part of novel is that where we see Beatrix acting like a common poor person, taking a job at Marshall Fields and Co. When she sees a need or injustice, she can’t keep silent. All this winds up together to a truly unique climax you won’t want to miss.

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I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit via NetGalley. This is no way affects my opinions, which are solely my own.

 

My Rating

5 Stars – Hits My Reading Sweet Spot

 

About the Author

Jen Turano, (www.jenturano.com) a USA Today bestselling author, has written four Turano_Jen1-200x300historical romance series. She is a member of ACFW and RWA and lives in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. Visit her website at www.jenturano.com.

 

 

 

 

More from Jen

Thank you so much for visiting me on my Celebrate Lit tour as we celebrate the release of my latest novel, “Storing Up Trouble.” I’m delighted to be here, and I reached out to my street team to help me with the questions you’ll find below. I’m hoping the answers to those questions will allow you to learn just a bit about my new book, as well as allow you to get to know me better. With that said, here we go!

 

Can you tell us a little about “Storing Up Trouble?”

I’d be delighted to tell you about my latest book. “Storing Up Trouble” is the third book in the “American Heiress” series, but you don’t need to read the first two books in that series (“Flights of Fancy” “Diamond in the Rough” to understand what’s going on. I’ve been writing my books more as stand alone stories, and “Storing Up Trouble” is no exception to that. With that said, this book centers around Miss Beatrix Waterbury and Mr. Norman Nesbit. Beatrix, unfortunately, has annoyed her mother to such an extent that she finds herself banished from New York and on her way to Chicago to spend time with her aunt, a lady Beatrix remembers as being a querulous sort. She, being Beatrix, a lady who lands herself in trouble at the most unexpected of times, soon finds herself a victim of a train heist. An unlikely hero in the form of Mr. Norman Nesbit, a gentleman with a brilliant mind but relatively few social graces, comes to her rescue, and from the moment they disembark from the train, they find themselves thrust into one escapade after another.

 

In “Storing Up Trouble,” is there a character you’d like to be friends with in real life, or better yet, a character you’d avoid at all costs?

I actually have an answer to both parts of that question. Miss Theodosia Robinson is a lady I would love to count as a friend because she’s loyal to a fault, and is a friend who’ll be there for you, no matter if you want to delve into an unusual scientific experiment, or take a jaunt to your local department store to do a bit of shopping. As for who I’d avoid at all cost – Mrs. George Blossom, who has a very small part in the story, but she’s a customer at Marshal Fields & Company who embraces an air of superiority over the sales girls, and I’ve never been one to enjoy people like that.

 

What do you consider your greatest accomplishment?

That’s easy. Being Dominic’s mom. He was definitely a handful when he was little, which is why he’s an only child, but it’s been incredibly rewarding to watch him grow over the years. He recently graduated from college with a degree in engineering, and seeing him land a grown up job and begin to embrace the whole adulting thing makes me prouder than any book I’ve written or other job I’ve held.

 

What was the inspiration behind “Storing Up Trouble?”

There were quite a few things that inspired me to write this book. I’d set another one of my books, “Caught by Surprise” in Chicago, and because of the research I did for that book, research I wasn’t able to fit into that story, I knew I wanted to revisit that city at some point. Beatrix Waterbury gave me the perfect excuse to travel back there. I wanted to take her out of her usual setting of NYC, so off she went to Chicago, on a train ride that definitely turned concerning. I had also picked up a few research books about Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison and I’ve been itching to create a character after those brilliant gentlemen. Norman Nesbit turned into that gentleman, although I have to admit that some of the science Nikola and Thomas used was way over my head. My son, the engineer, tried to explain it to me, but I believe at one point I might have been drooling, and not in the good way, but the bored way. That’s when Norman really began to develop because I thought it would be amusing to have a character who was passionate about his field of study, but most of the people he tried to share that passion with had no idea what he was talking about and always got a bit of a dazed expression in their eyes as he waxed on and on about double-electrical currents.

 

What fun facts did you uncover while doing research for “Storing Up Trouble” but weren’t able to fit into the story?

 

There was so much fodder for additional storylines just with the research I did on Marshal Field and his department store. Did you know that the main store in Chicago burned down doing the Great Fire of 1871 and…it burned down several times after that? Who knew? There was also a lot of drama surrounding Marshal and his partner for years, Mr. Levi Zeigler Leiter. They had different ideas about how the store should evolve, which resulted in Marshal forcing Levi to sell his shares of the company to him, at which point the store turned from  Field, Leiter, & Company to Marshal Fields Company. It was also interesting to learn that Mr. Fields was notorious for paying his workers low wages, but those workers accepted those wages because of the prestige that came with working at his store. If you worked at any other store, you were considered common, but to work at Marshal Fields was a feather in your cap, even if you weren’t earning as much as you could have earned at another store.

 

What are quirky little things you keep on your desk?

At the moment, I have one little pig with googly eyes, one cow with googly eyes, and then another small pig that a reader sent me because she really liked Matilda in “A Match of Wits” and thought this little pig she found at a store was exactly what Matilda would look like.

 

Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Oddly enough, no, it never crossed my mind until Dominic was in third grade and we decided to write a book together after finishing this horrible series about this bird. That book was never meant for publication, but it did have me remembering that I had, at one point in time before I became a stay-at-home-mom, enjoyed using my brain. I started experimenting with different genres and learned everything I could about the publishing industry. It took me five years to find an agent, and then she sold “A Change of Fortune” to Bethany House, and I’ve been writing for them ever since.

 

Any words of advice for aspiring writers?

I get this question a lot, and I always answer by saying “Have an honest talk with yourself about what you really want to achieve with your writing.” It’s perfectly fine to want to write because you’re interested in turning it into a career. However, with that said, a writer needs to understand that writing and publishing are two different creatures. Publishing is a daunting business, and it’ll take a lot of perseverance to find success with it. With that said, if you have raw talent and are a story teller at heart, you should write all the time and do whatever you can to learn how to improve your craft.

 

What are you working on next?

I’m working on a new series right now – “The Bleeker Street Inquiry Agency.” The first book, “To Steal a Heart” releases in November, 2020. It’s about Miss Gabriella Goodhue, who spent her childhood living on the mean streets in Five Points. She’s currently living in a boarding house on Bleeker Street in New York City, and when a fellow resident gets unjustly accused of theft, Gabriella, along with the other ladies living in the boarding house, take it upon themselves to try and clear her name. That’s the beginning of the Bleeker Street Agency, and hopefully the ladies will enjoy much success as the series continues.

 

Thank you so much for stopping by today. I hope all of you get an opportunity to read “Storing Up Trouble!”

 

Wishing you all the best,

 

Jen

 

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, May 23

Godly Book Reviews, May 23

Robin’s Nest, May 23

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 24

Rebecca Tews, May 24

Texas Book-aholic, May 24

Novelscorner, May 24

Among the Reads, May 25

Inklings and notions, May 25

deb’s Book Review, May 25

Reflections From My Bookshelves, May 26

Hebrews 12 Endurance, May 26

reviewingbooksplusmore, May 26

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 27

Losing the Busyness, May 27

For Him and My Family, May 27

Simple Harvest Reads, May 27 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 28

Inside the Wong Mind, May 28

Mia Reads, May 29

Read Review Rejoice, May 29

Betti Mace, May 30

Breny and Books, May 30

Blogging With Carol, May 30

Life of Literature, May 31

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, May 31

Emily Yager, May 31

Splashes of Joy, May 31

The Collaborative Press, June 1

Stories By Gina, June 1

Hookmeinabook, June 1

Blessed & Bookish, June 2

Older & Smarter?, June 2

The Artist Librarian, June 2

Blossoms and Blessings, June 2

Through the Fire Blogs, June 3

Beauty in the Binding, June 3

Mary Hake, June 3

amandainpa, June 3

Wishful Endings, June 4

EmpowerMoms, June 4

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, June 4

Pause for Tales, June 4

KarenSueHadley, June 5

Raining Butterfly Kisses, June 5

With a Joyful Noise, June 5

Hallie Reads, June 5

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jen is giving away the the grand prize package of all three books in the American Heiresses series and a $25 Barnes & Noble eGift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/fb8f/storing-up-trouble-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour

Leaf Me Alone, #3 Relatively Speaking by Julie Cosgrove

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About the Book

Title: Leaf Me Alone

Series: Relatively Speaking, #3

Author: Julie B. Cosgrove

Publisher: Pursued Books, an imprint of White Integrity Press

Released: February 2020

A long lost child . . . and secrets that insist the lost remain lost!

Word spreads through town about the genealogy researches of Shannon, Bailey, and Jessica. So far, it’s been a fun hobby and an eye-opening experience as they helped to solve two murders. But when old Mrs. Perkins, their Bible study leader, wants to hire Shannon and her husband Jayden to find her long-lost nephew, the couple soon learns that moving forward along the Perkins family tree may leave them dangling out on a limb . . .
and someone is holding a saw!

 

My Review

“Who knew finding relatives could be so dangerous?”  Yikes. A dear older friend suddenly confides she has cancer and enters a hospice facility, but the patients at said facility are dying at an alarming rate. In the meantime, several friends risk their lives looking for a missing man.
I would recommend Julie Cosgrove and her Relatively Seeking Mysteries to other readers looking for a good mystery filled with lots of twists and surprises, plus faith and suspense. Leaf Me Alone is the first book I’ve read by Julie Cosgrove, but I am certain it won’t be the last.
I enjoyed the romance included between Shannon Johnson and her
husband, Jayden. So many times married people are not portrayed as still able to romance or appreciate each other.

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I liked the small, close-knit circle of friends Shannon has with her two sleuthing and Bible study pals, Bailey and Jess, with an 82 year-old mentor, Grace Perkins. The ladies enjoy, support and encourage each other. Mrs. Perkins wants Shannon and Jayden, with help from Shannon’s friends, to find her missing, wanted nephew before she dies.
I got a few cases of whiplash as the possible culprit changes many times. I was very disappointed in Bob’s character, whose actions just don’t jive with the rest of his what we see. Is that because we all stumble? Or did it just make for a better story? I felt like he had to be consistent across the board to be effective in his position that affected Manny, the long-lost nephew.
Now for the fun stuff I noticed.
”…her phone barked.” Oh, yes, Shannon runs a pet and plant care business. I loved how God used many coincidences, such as Shannon having to ride the bus to get to Florida, to bring about providential help. Someone has said,  “There are no coincidences. Only God-incidences.”

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And this quote. I love it. (I am forever talking about losing a file in my brain.) ”He pictured a minuscule elf inside her head flipping through files but unable to locate the right one.”
This second quote covers much of the book: ”To tell only half the truth is to give life to a new lie.”
One more quote that I love, because so many times we are praying for uncertain people doing uncertain things. How do we pray?  “Pray for the truth to be revealed and for God to take care of all concerned.”
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit. This does not affect my opinions, which are solely my own.

 

My Rating

4 Stars – I Would Happily Recommend This Book

 

About The Author

Freelance writer, award-winning author, and professional speaker, Julie B. Cosgrove leads religious retreats, workshops for churches and writer groups, and Bible studies. She writes regularly for several devotional publications and is on staff with Campus JCosgroveCrusades of Canada’s Power to Change digital ministry as editor and writer for The Life Project. Their websites help to lead thousands of people worldwide to know Christ, one mouse click at a time. Her own blog, Where Did You Find God Today? has readership in 52 countries.

 

Julie has published three Bible studies, a devotional, two inspirational guides, and has fifteen faith-based fiction novels published or contracted, including two cozy mysteries series, The Bunco Biddies Mysteries and the Relatively Seeking Mysteries. All can be viewed on her website: www.juliebcosgrove.com.

 

Awarded one of the 50 Writers You Should Be Reading by the Author’s Show in 2015 and 2016, and Best Religious Fiction 2016, Best Cozy Mystery 2017 by Texas Association of Authors, Julie was also an INSPY semi-finalist and a Grace Awards Finalist in 2016. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and the Christian Authors’ Network. She achieved the highest public speaking level in Toastmasters International, the Advanced Communication Gold, in 2015.