When Autumn Bridges, the town coroner, meets Matt Cabbage in a near-collision on Main Street, they discover they have much in common. First, they’re next-door neighbors now that Matt owns The Cabbage Patch, his family’s ancestral estate. They’re also single parents of tween girls. And when screams herald the discovery of a corpse on Matt’s first night in the mansion, the two join forces to prove that neither Matt nor his uncle is guilty. The sleepy little town of Cabbageville, Texas, will never be the same.
This light-hearted and delightfully funny cozy mystery keeps you turning pages with its twists and surprises. The easy and clever dialog between Autumn and Matt sparkles in this first book of the Cabbageville Mystery series.
About the Author
R.L. Buck, the author of Death in the Cabbage Patch, A Cabbageville Mystery Book 1, is retired from a long career as a Renaissance trades-Jack. He lives in the Texas Panhandle with his two fur babies (Dak, the rat terrier, and Jackson, the silver poodle mix), neither of which can reach the kibbles bin. Both adore R.L. as the perfect housemate for his roles as Supreme Doler of the Food and Giver of Belly Rubs.
An avid reader and writer of mysteries, horror, fantasy, and SciFi for as long as he can remember, R.L. has written the second book in the Cabbageville Mystery series and started the third. He also has several other works in progress.
R.L. Buck writes clean and entertaining fiction informed by a Christian worldview without preaching or side-stepping themes many Christian writers tend to avoid. He prefers to call himself a Christian who writes rather than a Christian Writer: he displays his faith in his writing, but it is not the sole point of it.
“We do everything we can to protect our circle. Beyond that, if we’re so paranoid we forget to live our lives, what’s the use? You have to let go at some point, and you figure the Almighty’s better equipped to protect your loved ones than you are.”
With a title like Death in the Cabbage Patch, RL Buck had me intrigued in his first novel of his new cozy series, The Cabbageville Mysteries. I found it to be a fun, clean offering. The victim is someone so unlikeable, that we have a smorgasbord of possible suspects.
Buck creates relatable and realistic characters. I did feel like Matt and Autumn became a couple extremely fast. Sukie and Misty add some reason for their parents to spend more time together. It will be interesting to see how they figure into future books.
Buck also populates his novel with some interesting secondary characters. The pastor and Widow Carmichael with her surprising business are both memorable.
I’m sure we’ll see more of cousin Hedda, who is both Autumn’s friend and Matt’s cousin.
I’ll be looking for the next book in the series to see if the mystery can compare to this one.
I received a copy of the book from the author through Early Reviewers in Library Thing. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
The strongest love is formed in the crucible of hardship
As Norah King surveys her family land in Iowa in 1880, she is acutely aware that it is all she has left, and she will do everything in her power to save it–even if that means marrying a man she hardly knows. Days before her wedding, Norah discovers an injured man on her property. Her sense of duty compels her to take him in and nurse him back to health. Little does she realize just how much this act of kindness will complicate her life and threaten the future she’s planned.
Norah’s care does more than aid Quincy Barnes’s recovery–it awakens his heart to possibilities. Penniless and homeless, he knows the most honorable thing he can do is head on down the road and leave Norah to marry her intended. But walking away from the first person to believe in him proves much harder than he imagined.
“The farmland went on forever, and it smelled like happiness.”
One thing I can count on when I read a Rachel Fordham book. I know I’m going to love it, and Where the Road Bends is no exception.
Fordham writes with a sweet, historical romance, prairie-style. I love Norah King and her innocent, one-chance-left-self. She is stronger than she knows, and has a truly compassionate heart for others. How I wish she had had someone she trusted besides Jake Granger and Quincy Barnes to advise her!
Quincy is quite the dashing hero. I loved his willingness to share his faith and his compassionate heart as it prompts him to act, as well. He shares much of himself with Norah, trying to encourage her.
“But I don’t have an author weaving words together, ensuring a happy ending.”~ Norah
…“You do have an author,” he whispered. “He’s there, working for your good.” ~ Quincy
I think I identified most with the housekeeper, Mrs. Dover. She has seen enough of life to give some very sage advice to both Quincy and Norah.
Highly recommended, especially for readers of Kim Vogel Sawyer.
I found the story wonderfully unpredictable. So many heart-wrenching moments, where I wanted to grab up a character and hug them, or yell at them to make a different choice. (It didn’t work.)
I received a copy of the book from Revell through LibraryThing Early Reviewers, plus I purchased my own ebook. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
“The dark is easier to cure than other fears.”
“…if you add light, the dark dies.”
“I’m afraid of coming close to happiness, only to lose it again.
“Trust is a finicky thing.”
Magnificent!! A Heart-wrenching, Unpredictable Prairie Romance
About the Author
Rachel Fordham has long been fascinated by all things historical or in the words of her children “old stuff”. Often the historical trivia she discovers is woven into her children’s bedtime tales. Despite her love for good stories she didn’t attempt writing a novel until her husband challenged her to do so (and now she’s so glad he did). Since that time she’s often been found typing or researching while her youngest child naps or frantically writing plot twists while she waits in the school pick-up line. In addition to her passion for storytelling she enjoys reading, being outdoors and seeing new places. Rachel lives with her husband and children on an island in Washington state.
Learn more about Rachel’s current projects at rachelfordham.com
If any place on God’s earth was designed to help one heal, it is Meadowland. Surely here, at her brother-in-law’s Kentucky farm, Rose and her daughters can recover from the events of the recent past–the loss of her husband during the 1918 influenza epidemic, her struggle with tuberculosis that required a stay at a sanatorium, and her girls’ experience in an orphanage during her illness. At Meadowland, past troubles become rich soil in which faith can grow.
Dirk Meadows may have opened his home to his late brother’s widow and her girls, but he keeps his heart tightly closed. The roots of his pain run deep, and the evidence of it is written across his face. Badly scarred by a fire and abandoned by the woman he loved, Dirk fiercely guards his heart from being hurt again.
But it may be that his visitors will bring light back into his world and unlock the secret to true healing.
“Are you fey, child?”…””Is that the same as tetched in the head?…If so, I don’t think I am. My mother told me I wasn’t and not to pay mind to anyone who said I was.”
“Most people have some life scars, Miss Warfield.
Sometimes they show, sometimes they don’t.”
“Scars aren’t a sign of wickedness. Mistreating children is a sign of wickedness.”- Calla
Ann H Gabhart has been a favorite author of mine for years now. Employing uncomplicated, warm, and homey language, Gabhart invites us into the lives of a fractured family trying to find normalcy in When the Meadows Bloom. Rose Meadows has spent years recovering from TB at a sanitarium. Her young daughters are left in a children’s home that promises to care well for them until she returns. Rose finally decides she is ready to well enough to leave snd reclaim the girls, but finds she must have someone to stay with. Enter her late husband’s reclusive, taciturn brother who owns a beautiful farm. Not promising new beginnings.
This book made me want to cry. To think that children’s home workers could be two-faced and not properly care for those in their charge.
I loved the tertiary characters who were not in charge, but who did what they could to lighten others’ burdens. Those who saw beyond their own needs or in one case, world.
I loved how even scarred hearts had openings where love and care eked out for the downtrodden. Which, I think, amazed even the persons suddenly showing such compassion!
If you love kids at all, you will love both fearful Calla and dreamy Sienna! They are so very different, yet love each other fiercely. You will only want the happiest of endings for these two wise-beyond-their-years, deeply scarred little girls. And you may come to care for the adults who love them, as well.
I received a copy of the book from Library Thing Early Reviewers. I also bought a copy. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.
Meadowland. The very name sounded like heaven.
You need a purpose other than what you are to somebody else.
Secrets nearly always surface eventually and bring with them troubles.
He could drown in those eyes of hers. “You are trespassing on my heart.”
Magnificent!! A Heartwarming Historical of Healing Scars
About the Author
Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of Along a Storied Trail, An Appalachian Summer, River to Redemption, These Healing Hills, and Angel Sister, along with several Shaker novels–The Refuge, The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted. She and her husband live on a farm a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. Ann enjoys discovering the everyday wonders of nature while hiking in her farm’s fields and woods with her grandchildren and her dogs, Frankie and Marley. Learn more at http://www.annhgabhart.com.
In 1920, Annabeth De Lacy’s father is appointed landlord of Galway Parish in Ireland. Bored without all the trappings of the British Court, Annabeth convinces her father to arrange an apprenticeship for her with the Jennings family–descendants of the creator of the famed Claddagh Ring.
Stephen Jennings longs to do anything other than run his family’s jewelry shop. Having had his heart broken, he no longer believes in love and is weary of peddling the ÒliesÓ the Claddagh Ring promises.
Meanwhile, as the war for Irish independence gains strength, many locals resent the De Lacys and decide to take things into their own hands to display their displeasure. As events take a dangerous turn for Annabeth and her family, she and Stephen begin to see that perhaps the “other side” isn’t quite as barbaric and uncultured as they’d been led to believe–and that the bonds of friendship, love, and loyalty are only made stronger when put through the refiner’s fire.
Travel to the Emerald Isle for another poignant and romantic story from the enchanted pen of Jennifer Deibel.
Jennifer Deibel’s second novel has proven to be every bit as fantastic as her debut. I fully expect The Lady of Galway Manor to at least be nominated for an award, if not win big. Why?
First of all, Deibel takes us back to 1920s Ireland, where social justice is fought for, and oppression is used to control people. It is a time when Britain is fighting to retain her hold on the island, and the Irish want none of it. We see a lot of prejudices, each about the other nationality. Whether it be Stephen, who dislikes Lady Annabeth DeLacy for her family’s representation of rule by force, or the townspeople who refuse to look beyond Anna’s heritage to her heart, hate and bitterness sew tragic results. Even Anna is forced to admit to prejudices against the Irish, originally assuming them simple and uneducated. One can’t help but see similarities to what is happening in our own country, with great strife and discord resulting.
Secondly, Deibel fills her pages with great scenery, exciting action, and relatable characters. Reading The Lady of Galway Manor is like a mini-field trip to Ireland with a chance to learn about the famed Claddaugh ring design. With two opposing political forces, there is plenty of tension and action. And the characters! Oh, my!! All are drawn so well, I could understand even the ones I didn’t like. But Seamus is my absolute fave! He is a gentle spirit, attempting to guide Stephen to see each person for themselves, not their country. I love his way of getting to the heart of the matter as Stephen’s attitudes. So loving, so direct, so challenging! He is a constant champion of Anna. “Hate is fueled by ignorance, son. The first step toward peace is the genuine desire to understand your so-called enemy. Don’t punish her for the sins of her fathers. Let her learn. Teach her. Guide her. And maybe one day you’ll see what I do. In both of you.”
Thirdly, the romance was thwarted. It peaks out of the novel, starts to emerge, and then is repressed so many times. Is it possible for a romance between Stephen snd Anna to survive?
If you read one historical fiction book about this year, I highly suggest The Lady of Galway Manor!
I received a copy of the book from LibraryThing’s Early Reviewers. No positive review was required, and all thoughts are my own.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Timely Historical Fiction from Ireland, but so Appropriate for US today!
About the Author
Jennifer Deibel is a middle school teacher and freelance writer. Her work has appeared on (in)courage, on The Better Mom, in Missions Mosaic Magazine, and others. With firsthand immersive experience abroad, Jennifer writes stories that help redefine home through the lens of culture, history, and family. After nearly a decade of living in Ireland and Austria, she now lives in Arizona.
Her debut novel, A Dance in Donegal, released in February of 2021, was the recipient of the Kipp Award for Historical Romance.
Blaine Grayson returns to Three Sisters Island with a grand plan–to take Camp Kicking Moose to the next level. Her dream starts to unravel when she discovers Moose Manor’s kitchen has been badly remodeled by her sister, Cam, who doesn’t know how to cook. Added to that blow is the cold shoulder given by her best friend, Artie Lotosky, now a doctor to the unbridged Maine islands.
As old wounds are opened, Blaine starts to wonder if she made a mistake by coming home. Little by little, she must let go of one dream to discover a new one, opening her heart to a purpose and a future she had never imagined.
Welcome back to Three Sisters Island, ME, and another visit with Paul Grayson and his three grown daughters. (I was thankful for the character list at beginning of this book. With the books in the series a year apart, it can be hard to remember who’s who.) At Lighthouse Point, #3 Three Sisters Island, by Suzanne Woods Fisher is very enjoyable as it focuses especially on Blaine’s return to the island, yet we see Cam and Maddie maturing in their marriages and the dynamics of the family as a whole. There are so many character developments or relationships examined, that the flow of the storyline is wonderfully robust and busy from every angle. With healthy doses of faith that are spoken in Woods’ trademark profound but easy-to-understand style, this book is the perfect conclusion to The Three Sisters’ Island series. Woods even surprised me a few times with her twists and turns.
I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit via Net Galley and LibraryThing Early Reviewers. No positive review was required and all thoughts are my own.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
Magnificent!! A fave for its truths and tightly woven storyline.
About the Author
Award winning author Suzanne Woods Fisher writes for readers who have learned to expect the unexpected. With more than one million copies of her books sold worldwide, she is the bestselling author of more than 30 works, ranging from novels to non-fiction books to children’s books. Currently, she lives with her very big family in the East Bay.
More from Suzanne
10 Curious Facts about Lighthouses
People love lighthouses. There’s just something special about those sturdy sentinels with their beacons of light, patiently sweeping the water, their mournful and haunting wail of a foghorn. Longfollow’s poem, The Lighthouse, written in 1850, captured the allure so well:
And as the evening darkens, lo! how bright, Through the deep purple of the twilight air, Beams forth the sudden radiance of its light, With strange, unearthly splendor in the glare!
“Unearthly splendor.” Wow, doesn’t that hit the nail on the head? A lighthouse, to me, represents a spiritual truth: Someone’s watching out for us, looking out for the dangers ahead, and always glad to welcome us home.
Here are 10 facts about lighthouses that you might not know:
THE FIRST KNOWN LIGHTHOUSE was Egypt’s Pharos of Alexandria, Egypt, built in the third century B.C. The lighthouse was made from a fire on a platform to warn sailors of the port’s entrance. This lighthouse was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
THE OLDEST EXISTING LIGHTHOUSE IN THE WORLD is considered to be La Coruna in Spain that dates from ca. 20 B.C. A Roman lighthouse is located on the Cliffs of Dover in the UK that was constructed in 40 A.D.
THE UNITED STATES IS HOME to more lighthouses than any other country.
THE FIRST LIGHTHOUSE IN AMERICA was at Boston on Little Brewster Island (1716). The first keeper was George Worthylake who, sadly, was drowned, along with his wife and daughter, when returning to the island in 1718.
THE TALLEST LIGHTHOUSE is on Cape Hatteras, NC. Built in 1872, it reached 196 feet tall.
THE FIRST WEST COAST LIGHTHOUSE was built on Alcatraz Island in 1854.
DAYMARKS are the painted colors and patterns (diamonds, spirals and stripes) on lighthouse towers to distinguish them from each other.
LIGHTHOUSE KEEPING was one of the first U.S. government jobs available to women, as far back as the 19th century. Most obtained their position when their husband died or became incapacitated.
THE RANGE OF THE LIGHTHOUSE LIGHT produces a light seen 25 miles at sea.
ABOUT 700 LIGHTHOUSES are still in active use in the United States.
As I wrote the third book in the ‘Three Sisters island’ series, I just had to give that little charred lighthouse its day in the sun. It had patiently played a role in the first two books, waiting for its turn on center stage. Not only did its setting provide a very unexpected “WHAT? How did that happen?” conclusion to the series, it even stole the headline! The undisputed title: At Lighthouse Point.
Do you have a favorite lighthouse? If so, please add your picture in the comments below. Don’t forget to include its location.
Thanks for reading! Stay well, stay home, and read.
US Secret Service Special Agent Luke Powell is lucky to be alive. Three of his fellow agents have died in unusual circumstances in the past ten weeks. Luke is devastated by the loss of his friends and colleagues, and his inability to locate the killer feels like a personal failure. He’s an expert at shielding others, but now the protectors are in need of protection.
FBI Special Agent Faith Malone is driven to succeed and confident in her ability to solve every case she’s assigned. She’s been put in charge of the investigation into the unprecedented attacks, and with Luke’s life in danger, the stakes have never been higher. But it’s hard to know how to fight back when you don’t know who the enemy is.
As more agents are targeted, Luke and Faith will have to work together to bring a killer to justice and prevent any more names from joining their fallen brothers and sisters on the Secret Service Wall of Honor.
“Mondays were the worst.” Who doesn’t agree with that statement?! And with that sentence, Lynn H Blackburn deftly hooks the reader. The timbre of Unknown Threat, ( #1 Defend and Protect) escalates as we find out that Secret Service agents in the Raleigh office are being picked off systematically. Can FBI Special Agent, Faith Malone, work with Luke and get past his hatred of the FBI, to discover who wants to eradicate his team?
Plenty of drama, sweet romance, and explosive action make this a story to remember. I love the way that Luke and Faith must put aside their pasts with their hurts and baggage to forge a relationship. Little snippets make us aware of another team member whose romance may be the subject of the next book. I appreciate that Blackburn adds a humorous dimension to very tense moments and keeps the suspense below heart attack level. I have read Blackburn’s Dive Team Investigations series and was pleased to find the same level of team camaraderie and loyalty between members of Luke’s Secret Service agency. That pervading sense of family makes me eager to get my hands on the next book in the series. I received a copy of the book from the author and publisher through Library Thing. All opinions are my own, unsolicited thoughts.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
About the Author
It’s probably no surprise to any of you that two of my favorite things are reading books and writing books.
If I’m not reading or writing, there’s a decent chance that I’m talking about reading or writing, which is part of what makes doing interviews for my books so much fun.
I’ve compiled a running list of all the places where you can see/hear/read about everything from my feelings on dogs and cats to how I do my research. All of these interviews have been tied to the release of Unknown Threat in some way.
And speaking of Unknown Threat – y’all! The response has been amazing! As of this writing we are only 2 weeks past the release and there are already 105 reviews on Amazon and it has 4.8 stars. My mind is blown, my heart is full, and it makes me ridiculously excited to dive into writing the next book in the series!
Haunted by her sister’s mysterious disappearance, Lucy Wilson arrives in Rowan County, Kentucky, in the spring of 1911 to work for Cora Wilson Stewart, superintendent of education. When Cora sends Lucy into the hills to act as scribe for the mountain people, she is repelled by the primitive conditions and intellectual poverty she encounters. Few adults can read and write.
Born in those hills, Cora knows the plague of illiteracy. So does Brother Wyatt, a singing schoolmaster who travels through the hills. Involving Lucy and Wyatt, Cora hatches a plan to open the schoolhouses to adults on moonlit nights. The best way to combat poverty, she believes, is to eliminate illiteracy. But will the people come?
As Lucy emerges from a life in the shadows, she finds purpose; or maybe purpose finds her. With purpose comes answers to her questions, and something else she hadn’t expected: love.
“Oh, my stars and garters!” By the time I reached the 2nd chapter, my grin was firmly in place, stretching from ear-to-ear. Fisher recounts this remarkable tale of the real Cora Wilson Stewart, who campaigned for literacy in the Kentucky mountains, woven into fiction in a compelling, unforgettable novel. The Moonlight School is everything I’ve come to expect from Fisher and more. This is a tale of triumph of faith, perseverance, and a love for one’s neighbor’s plight that motivates action. The end brings so many pieces together, with twists I wouldn’t have seen coming. Lucy is a very special heroine, changing from inept, unconcerned city-girl to caring, daring, and brave young woman, ready to fight for the rights of the mountain people. Fisher gives creates a believable live triangle with Lucy and Andrew and Wyatt, then another with Lucy, Fin, and Angie. None of the characters are perfect, but some reach towards community betterment, while others reach only for what will benefit them. It is the ones who look out for the mountain folk who are “silent” that we learn to love. They share the following sentiment: “The only way to lift people is to teach them to lift themselves. Literacy is the only road to true freedom… literacy gives a voice to the silent.” I was amazed by the discovery that Cora makes through Miss Mollie that turns her educational philosophy upside down. I was also amazed by the natural teaching ability of Angie and her willingness to share with others when she is so antagonistic towards Lucy. I was proud of Lucy for tackling a job that she isn’t the best at yet filling in because she is needed. The original pronunciations of the mountain folk make the book authentic, while the explanations of their need to hang on to their culture from the Old Country, caused me to think differently than I had before. A hearty five stars to this beautiful book from Suzanne Woods Fisher!
I was given a complimentary copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit and NetGalley, as well as Library Thing. These are my own, unsolicited opinions.
Rating: 5 out of 5.
About the Author
More from Suzanne
I’m Suzanne Woods Fisher, the author of The Moonlight School. This historical fiction will release on February 2, 2021, and is based on a true story featuring Cora Wilson Stewart, a Kentucky educator way ahead of her times. In 1911, Cora had a crazy idea—to open rural one-room schoolhouses in her county on moonlit nights to teach illiterate adults how to read and write.
So what happened next? Well, it’s so astonishing that you wouldn’t believe me if I told you. Instead, I hope you’ll read the book and find out for yourself.
In the meantime, this infographic provides a fascinating look at illiteracy THEN…and NOW. Makes you want to thank your teachers, doesn’t it?