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Sabal Palms and the Southern Squall by Terry Overton Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Sabal Palms and the Southern Squall

Author: Terry Overton

Genre: Christian Contemporary Women’s Fiction

Release date: April 5, 2022

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Elaine Smith lived in the small coastal town of Sabal Palms long enough to know when to worry about a squall and when to simply close the windows and wait for it to pass. This one would be significant. It would be significant in terms of damage, but that was to be expected. What no one expected was the profound effect it would have on the lives of people from the Texas coast to New York City. Positive qualities of humanity are often displayed during times of natural disaster.
But a supernatural power had attached to this storm and subsequently worked within the hearts of the most needy, the most lonely, and the most sinister. The lives of four delightful women, a homeless teen, a rebellious son, a grieving lover who is at the bottom, a son who lost his faith, and a hired murderer, are all intertwined in the aftereffects of a Category 3 hurricane thanks to a few passages written by one determined woman.

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

“I don’t write for the money, I write hoping to change people’s lives.”

Terry Overton presents a very unique, heartwarming story about four older, widowed women who take refuge together from a hurricane. We see four mismatched persons who are very different, yet work together to form a strong, safe friendship. But that friendship is subject to two dangerous cancers. One is gossip, and the other is not encouraging a friend in her chosen line of work, simply because the results are not obvious.

I enjoyed this in-depth look at a hurricane, something unfamiliar to me. I loved how people rallied around each other to rebuild and restore necessities after the damage of the hurricane.

Poor Elaine. She feels like her writing is making no difference, until she finally writes a small passage for Adrianna. Adrianna is much encouraged, but the other two friends feel Elaine is wasting her time and have no qualms about telling her so.

Then, something begins to change. One by one, we are introduced to several other individuals from various parts of the country, whose lives intersect with the four friends. After finishing the book, I am in awe of what God can accomplish through humble people who are determined to do what He has called them to.

I received a copy of the book through Celebrate Lit. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

Notable Quotables:

“She wondered, as she did every night at the typewriter, if anything she wrote would make a difference for someone else.”

“Tamar wasn’t loved by God because she did good or bad things. She wasn’t loved by God because she had earned His love.” “I don’t understand what you are trying to say.” “Tamar was loved by God first, no matter what. He called her.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Great! God Rewards Those Who Quietly Do What He Calls Them to Do!

About the Author

Terry Overtonobtained her Ph.D. in Psychology and her Ed.D. in special education. She taught in public schools and was a school psychologist and a professor before retiring in 2016. Her university experiences included teaching at Longwood University in Virginia, the University of Texas-Brownsville, The University of Texas-Pan American, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, and Stephen F. Austin State University. She held positions as Dean and Department Chair during her tenure in higher education. Her areas of research included behavior disorders, learning disorders, autism, and research in higher education. She currently resides in Laguna Vista, Texas. She enjoys Biblical history and general Bible studies, writing, blogging, and visiting with friends and family. Her books have been recognized and received awards from Firebird Book Awards, American Writing Awards, and have earned five stars from Readers Views and Readers Favorites. Her books have been recognized Finalist for the International and National Book Awards.

More from Terry

This book will take the reader to the southern coast of Texas. In fact, this book happens at the very bottom tip of Texas. The reader will feel the warm sea breezes, view the coastal sunsets and sunrises, and experience the friendships of four close women friends. Here is a sample:

The women gathered at the swimming pool and shed their cover-ups. Next, each lady

took out her favorite sunscreen lotions and creams and sprayed and squirted so much on, they all

looked almost as pasty as a bottle of glue. No one talked at all during this process of slathering

on thick coats of varying SPFs. It was a polite, unspoken agreement that no forbidden words

were ever mentioned when the ladies were in swimwear. Words like cellulite, wrinkles, fat, fatty

tissue, weight, weight loss, weight gain, age spots, and—the worst words ever—skin cancer were

completely and totally off limits.

In times of crises, these four women always bind together and help each other. They have been friends for over twenty years. Here is an excerpt of one of their conversations during a pool party:

What strangers might not understand is the banter back and forth was exactly the only way they could get along. They enjoyed it. They thrived on it.

“Oh, fiddle-faddle, Bonnie, last week you told me you thought the salon was opening up

this week,” Mary jabbed. “It didn’t.”

“I didn’t say that. I said I heard it might be opening next month.”

“You said next week as sure as I am floating on this raft.”

“Had your hearing checked lately?”

“Right after you get yours checked.”

And they both laughed. It was always entertaining.

“Well, horsefeathers! I need to get this hair trimmed again. It is all cattywampus on the

sides.”

“What? You’ve got a cat in there?” Bonnie laughed.

“Feels like it,” Mary retorted.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 30

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, May 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 31

Texas Book-aholic, June 1

Inklings and notions, June 2

deb’s Book Review, June 3

For Him and My Family, June 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 5

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, June 6

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, June 7

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 8

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, June 9

Mary Hake, June 9

Blogging With Carol, June 10

Pause for Tales, June 11

Spoken from the Heart, June 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Terry is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card & copy of the book!!

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/1e381/sabal-palms-and-southern-squall-celebration-tour-giveaway

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A Promise Engraved by Liz Tolsma Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Promise Engraved

Author: Liz Tolsma

Genre: Christian Fiction/Historical Fiction/Romance

Release date: May, 2022

9781636092492 (3)

Can Promises Made in Times of Struggle Endure 200 Years?

Visit historic American landmarks through the Doors to the Past series. History and today collide in stories full of mystery, intrigue, faith, and romance.

Young, spirited Josie Wilkins life is about to take a turn when faced with political turmoil and forbidden love in San Antonio of 1836. John Gilbert has won her heart, despite being a Protestant preacher who is forbidden to practice his faith in Texas. Will either of them survive an epic battle for liberty to create a legacy of love?

Nearly 200 years later, Kayleigh Hernandez takes breaks from her demanding job as a refugee coordinator working with Mexican migrants to attend flea markets where she has found a uniquely engraved ring. Enlisting the help of appraiser Brandon Shuman, they piece together a love story long forgotten. But will dangers linked to Kayleigh’s work end her own hopes for leaving a legacy built on hope, faith, and love?

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

Kudos to Liz Tolsma for crafting such an unputdownable dual-time novel. I was hooked from the first page and hated that I was unable to finish the novel in one sitting. Have Kleenex handy and maybe something to squeeze when the tension gets high. You’re going to need both, a lot!!

A cat’s-eye ring connects Josie Wilkins, a young spy for those Americans who fought Santa Anna at the Alamo in 1836, and Kayleigh Hewland, a young Hispanic American who is haunted by vague memories of her birth parents.

Come read this novel for the intrigue, for the romance, for the danger. Get lost in the gripping emotions, the fascinating history, and the faith that kindles and slowly builds into solid flame.

Tolsma creates characters that are readily relatable. Others you will despise with a passion, just as their actions dictate. A few, like Bright Star and Running Deer, need to have stories of their own. I wanted to know them better.

I enjoyed the way that Tolsma set off the ending of each time period. Each period would wind up at a climax with a cliffhanger, before preceding to the next segment to rebuild the angst and anticipation.

Themes are having faith in God and others, and believing God brings good out of bad. We are reminded that while searching for biological parents fills a need, God also provides through adoptive parents, not to be taken for granted. Plus, we are urged to realize that many innocent, young children are caught up in our country’s border wars.

I received a copy of the book from Celebrate Lit, plus I bought my own copy. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

Notable Quotables:

“Let your head rule the day, not your heart.”

“…we have no guarantees in this life and that we must entrust the ones we have into the Lord’s hands.”

“Time to sit back and let God.”

“Never let them hear you, never let them see you, never let them smell you.”

“Appealing to a man’s stomach was always a good choice to bring any argument to an end.”

“Faith. It meant taking that giant step and putting herself in someone else’s hands.”

“Don’t miss out on the future because of what you lost in the past.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Magnificent!! Mesmerizing Dual-Timeline Melding Alamo and Adoption

About the Author

Liz Tolsma is the author of several WWII novels, romantic suspense novels, prairie romance novellas, and an Amish romance. She is a popular speaker and an editor and resides next to a Wisconsin farm field with her husband and their youngest daughter. Her son is a US Marine, and her oldest daughter is a college student. Liz enjoys reading, walking, working in her large perennial garden, kayaking, and camping. Please visit her website at http://www.liztolsma.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter (@LizTolsma), Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest. She is also the host of the Christian Historical Fiction Talk podcast.

More from Liz

The Story of Susannah Dickinson, Alamo Survivor

When asked how many died at the Alamo, many would answer that everyone did. While it’s true that all fighting on the side of Texas independence perished, there were survivors, all women and children and one slave. The only white woman (the rest were of Mexican descent) was Susannah Dickinson, along with her daughter Angelina. Susannah had followed her husband, Almaron, to Mexican Texas in 1831. They had married two years before when Susannah was just fifteen. She never learned to read or write.

She and the other women hid in the sacristy of the church, one of the surviving buildings in the mission and what we now think of as the Alamo. Her husband died, but Mexican General Santa Anna found them and spared their lives, sending them to Sam Houston with $2 each and a blanket.

She married again the following year but divorced him almost immediately on the grounds of cruelty. She married a third time the following year and was married for five years until her husband died of alcoholism. A fourth marriage occurred in 1847, but she divorced again in 1857, this time allegedly because she was having an affair. That same year, she married for a fifth time. This marriage lasted until her death in 1883.

The ring in A Promise Engraved is based on a cat’s eye ring supposedly given to Angelina by William Travis before the battle. Angelina was Susannah’s only child. She married and had three children, but that marriage ended in divorce. She gave the ring to a man she’d become involved with in New Orleans. She married again and had one more child but died in 1869 from a uterine hemorrhage.

Today there are many descendants of Susannah Dickinson. If you visit the Susannah Dickinson house in Austin, you’ll see a quilt that is signed by many of her living descendants.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 28

Bigreadersite, May 28

The Write Escape, May 28

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 29

Christina’s Corner, May 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 29

lakesidelivingsite, May 30

Texas Book-aholic, May 30

Rebecca Tews, May 30

Inklings and notions, May 31

Blogging With Carol, May 31

Splashes of Joy, May 31

Betti Mace, June 1

Southern Gal Loves to Read, June 1

Genesis 5020, June 2

Daysong Reflections, June 2

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, June 2

Remembrancy, June 3

Books, Books, and More Books, June 3

For Him and My Family, June 3

Older & Smarter?, June 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 4

Tell Tale Book Reviews, June 5

deb’s Book Review, June 5

Mary Hake, June 5

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, June 6

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, June 6

Blossoms and Blessings, June 6

Connie’s History Classroom, June 7

Life of Literature, June 7

Back Porch Reads , June 7

Bizwings Blog, June 8

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 8

For the Love of Literature, June 8

Through the Fire blogs, June 9

Pause for Tales, June 9

Labor Not in Vain, June 9

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, June 10

Melissa’s Bookshelf, June 10

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, June 10

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Liz is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and copy of the book!!

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/1e37a/a-promise-engraved-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Kindle, Purchase

A Sprinkle in Time by Dana Mentink Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: A Sprinkle in Time

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre: Cozy mystery (general market)

Release date: May 24, 2022

Asprinkleintime

It’s Alpenfest in Upper Sprocket! Yodelers are congregating in the square, tourists flocking to the town, and Trinidad Jones is scooping up some fall flavors at her Shimmy and Shake Shop.

The cherry on the sundae is her upcoming feature in Go West magazine. She’s determined to serve up the perfect interview, but it won’t be easy, thanks in part to her meddling Cuban grandfather Papa Luis who has decided to make Sprocket his home for the foreseeable future. Papa Luis has set himself up as a taxi driver in his classic 1951 Buick.

But things take a turn when Papa Luis tells her he’s found a corpse in his trunk. Upon closer investigation, they realize the body has disappeared. With the assistance of Juliette and Bonnie (her sisterhood of exes) and the way too handsome nut farmer Quinn Logan, Trinidad must solve the mystery of the disappearing corpse, before her father is up to his neck in a murderous mess.

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

Life can be hard. Enter cozies like A Sprinkle in Time by Dana Mentink. Clean, with a sweet romance, whose amateur sleuth runs a delectable shake shop. A dog, a child, precocious twins who work for the shake shop, and lovable Papa Luis. Plus, of course, plenty of suspects. “Murder, mayhem, and milkshakes. Who’d a thunk it?”

Trinidad Jones becomes someone I truly care about in this book. I am amazed at how she and Gabe’s two other former wives forgive each other and actually become friends. Not just friends, but family, as thick as blood. Now there is a small cluster of characters to follow and enjoy in this town of Upper Sprocket. Fun!

I enjoy the inclusion of dogs, children, and special-needs people, and Dana Mentink brings them all to our Shimmy and Shake Shop story. Noodles is old, but what a loyal companion, and, wow, does he have an amazing ability or two! Little Felice adds warmth and vulnerability to the tale. Doug, the special-needs brother of Trinity’s love interest, Quinn, adds reality and complexity to the novel.

Mentink has a good sense of humor and I laughed out loud several times. Just what I want out of a cozy. Mystery, romance, great characters, laughter. A fun occupation that the sleuth actually works at. I am happy to report I made it through the book without indulging in ice cream! But, can you?

I am looking forward to more murder and mayhem in Upper Sprocket! Plus more Freakshakes!

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I received a copy of the book from Celebrate Lit. (I also bought my own copy.) No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

————————————————————————-

Notable Quotables:

“He was merely a friend the way a Ming vase was just an old pot.”

“There’s your plan and God’s plan, and your plan…” “Doesn’t count,”

“Maybe it’s one of those weird small-town happenings.” “A body in your trunk isn’t a happening, it’s a horror movie,”

“It wasn’t an easy thing to command the heart to feel what the brain ordered.”

“Rumors carry so much more weight than the truth, sometimes.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Magnificent! Frozen Desserts, Just Deserts, and Justice

About the Author

Dana Mentink is a USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author as well as a two-time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, and the recipient of a Holt Medallion. She’s written over fifty titles in the suspense, lighthearted romance and mystery genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, and Poisoned Pen Press. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

More from Dana

Who wouldn’t want to visit Upper Sprocket? Sure there’s the odd corpse that turns up, but it’s a charming place, complete with a rail riders excursion business and the Shimmy and Shake Shop, run by the determined Trinidad Jones. It’s fall in Sprocket and the locals are hosting a series of Alpenfest events with everything from yodeling performances to sausage cook offs. Papa Luis, Trinidad’s grandfather is happy to shuttle people around in his classic Chevy Bel Air until a body turns up in his truck. But other than that, Sprocket is an idyllic place with a newly opened train car inn operated by Bonnie, one of three women who were married at various times to the same rapscallion of a man. Oh, and then there’s Noodles, Trinidad’s senior Labrador retriever who has learned how to operate the windshield wipers which comes in handy as stormy weather approaches. Trinidad, Papa, Bonnie and Noodles along with other Sprocket residents are going to have their hands full as Alpenfest kicks off and gruesome items begin to pop up around town. Come along on the adventure as Trinidad wades knee deep into the sticky mess.

Railriding research with my sister!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 21

The Write Escape, May 21

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 22

She Lives To Read, May 22

Daysong Reflections, May 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 23

Texas Book-aholic, May 24

Pause for Tales, May 24

Inklings and notions, May 25

Blossoms and Blessings, May 25

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 26

For Him and My Family, May 26

deb’s Book Review, May 27

Blogging With Carol, May 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 28

Christina’s Corner, May 29

Tell Tale Book Reviews, May 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 30

Simple Harvest Reads, May 30 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, May 31

Labor Not in Vain, May 31

Bigreadersite, June 1

Vicky Sluiter, June 1

Genesis 5020, June 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 2

Lighthouse-Academy, June 3

A Good Book and cup of Tea, June 3

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a signed book!!

(If the winner is outside the U.S., then he or she will receive an eBook.)

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/1df1a/a-sprinkle-in-time-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Favorite, Kindle, Purchase

Bride of the Rockies by Angela Breidenbach Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Bride of the Rockies

Author: Angela Breidenbach

Genre: Historical Romance

Release date: January 1, 2022

Bride of the Rockies Option 2.2.1 FRONT

For botanist, Bettina Gilbert, mining is an offense against God’s green earth. With the shortage of women in Montana, Luke travels to Chicago to manage the Montana mining exhibition hoping to also find a wife. Only that pretty botanist keeps disrupting his mining presentations … and his chances of meeting the right woman! A city girl who despises his way of life would be the worst choice for a miner’s wife, wouldn’t she?

Uplifting, wholesome romance set in the Gilded Age during Chicago’s World Fair. Written by bestselling author and professional genealogist, Angela Breidenbach. Accurate to history while entertaining, inspiring, with a lovely ambiance of hope.

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

“She couldn’t focus on the future if she lived in the pain of her past.”

Each Queen of the Rockies novel gets better and better. After this fifth installment, Bride of the Rockies, Angela Breidenbach has set the bar very high for herself.

First, she managed to put important historical notes in the introduction. My appetite for what was to come was greatly whetted.

Secondly, Breidenbach uses a setting far away from Montana to impart Montana history. What a unique idea! I love it!

Thirdly, I loved Bettina Gilbert’s first impression of the alabaster buildings set up for the 1893 World’s Fair. “From the distance, the shape made by the harbor buildings seemed more like Bettina pictured the Lord’s giant throne room, regal and triumphant, calling believers into His presence.”

What about the main characters, you ask? Luke Edwards is absolutely charming. I love Bettina’s passionate heart to help others with her talents provided by God and her family. Will these two find enough common ground to form more than a friendship?

Ok, Lydia and Jennie win hands-down for best-supporting characters, helping to make this a truly great and humorous story!! Their calculated and outlandish matchmaking knows no bounds. And their scientific feedback just might border on relationship advice! Bride of the Rockies actually has some good marriage relationship advice, but it is also hilarious!

After some unexpected twists, I found myself closing the book with a hearty laugh and satisfied smile. If you are a fan of Christian historical romance, humor, or the 1893 World’s Fair, this may be a great fit for you!

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I received a free copy of the book from the author through Celebrate Lit. (I also bought my own copy.) No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

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Notable Quotables:

“Not everyone in Montana is a cowboy, Miss Gilbert.”

“He didn’t fear marriage. But he sure feared being in the wrong marriage. Slow it down and get the right wife, his father had said. Get to know her first.”

“It’s like good relationships, if you sow on fertile ground and pull the weeds of misunderstanding regularly then your tender crop has a chance.”

“She couldn’t focus on the future if she lived in the pain of her past.”

“She might not have drowned in the lake but his eyes drew her like a bottomless well.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Magnificent!! Another Hilarious Heaping Helping of Montana History

About the Author

Angela Breidenbach is a professional genealogist, media personality, conference speaker, bestselling author of eighteen books, and screenwriter. Angela lives in Montana with her hubby and Muse, a trained fe-lion, who shakes hands, rolls over, and jumps through a hoop. Surprisingly, Angela can also. Catch her show and podcast, Genealogy Publishing Coach!

More from Angela

Rabbit trails. The paths that draw a writer away from her planned research. That’s what happened when I started researching Queen of the Rockies. I hopped down a rabbit trail that took me into an entirely different story. Here I was writing about the beginning of Montana as a state, the real people, and the unusual stories of the Gilded Age. Then a thread of the Chicago World’s Fair kept popping up like little bunnies in the middle of the field that darted here and there.

Well, those little rabbit trails captured my fascination. I couldn’t stop chasing them. I wanted to know more about why people who were busy carving out a new state would want to travel halfway across the country and live in Chicago for five months. Why would they care? What were their goals? Who were these unusual people? So, I did the smart thing. I started a new document to think about writing a later story.

The more I researched the first book in this series, Queen of the Rockies, the more I found tidbits of names that reappeared in newspapers. Then I followed a few of those names just to see what had become of them. I found a lot more than I expected. From the social pages in newspapers to club minute books to journals the stories of some really interesting women came to light. Their goals were much more than for one family or one town. These people found a cause bigger than themselves. They found a bond in forging a state that held respectability in the world’s eyes. These people were tired, and offended, of the constant slur — the Wild West. And they were going to change that erroneous misconception!

The rest of civilization didn’t understand how modern, elegant, and valuable Montana was in the 1890s. But the people of Montana were about to prove their infant state was the shining star on the American flag. She was no infant. This beautiful state, whose capitol was fully electric already, could hold her own among the elegant countries slated to be at that fair in 1893.

Come turn the pages of Bride of the Rockies and find out what these people, and especially the women, did to put Montana in the world headlines. See why they stunned with never before seen discoveries displayed in their pavilion during the Columbian Exposition. Can you imagine being given 10% of the budget while the men had 90%, in essence set up as the underdog, and blowing the world away with what you do with it?  Walking away with the win? Not just one win…seven!

Bride of the Rockies took me on a fabulous rabbit trail of research. I hope this story will be fun for you, too!

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 18

An Author’s Take, May 19

Blogging With Carol, May 19

Betti Mace, May 20

Texas Book-aholic, May 21

Mary Hake, May 21

Inklings and notions, May 22

For Him and My Family, May 23

Pause for Tales, May 23

deb’s Book Review, May 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 25

Blossoms and Blessings, May 25

Tell Tale Book Reviews, May 26

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 27

Spoken from the Heart, May 27

Bizwings Blog, May 28

Connie’s History Classroom, May 29

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 30

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Angela is giving away the grand prize of a pair of beautiful opal earrings set in fair trade sterling silver!!

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/1db54/bride-of-the-rockies-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Kindle, Purchase

Corner Booth by Chautona Havig Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Corner Booth

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance

Release date: March 17, 2015

Corner Booth Cover

A daring move forges the love of a lifetime

A rushed lunch and a bold move introduce Carlie to a stranger—one who hardly acknowledges her existence as he sits across from her, sharing his booth to save her a wait in a long line.
What began as a random encounter becomes a weekly date in which Carlie chatters about her life to a silent lunchmate. Much about him interests her–his slightly Euro fashion sense, his commitment to the work he does as he eats his lunch week after week, and his evident attention to the running monologue she shares between bites of meals that he inevitably pays for.
Dean gets to know the woman across from him–looks forward to their lunches each week, learns valuable lessons about himself—but when the cafe is threatened, and then when she doesn’t show up one day, he suspects their unusual friendship means more to him than he imagined.

Settle into the booth with Carlie and Dean and learn just how eloquent silence really is.

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

“Every time you slip, just once, your mouth becomes a cesspool of linguistic garbage.”

Chautona Havig likes to set up unique premises for novels she then tackles as a challenge to turn into an interesting, faith-filled, and believable storyline. Yet, Corner Booth may be one of the most unusual ideas yet. Based on the Bible verse found in James 1:19, “…You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry,” Havig builds her romance around a young, verbose, theology professor and a beautiful retail clerk who has no true self-concept. Weekly lunch dates consists of the talkative prof being refusing to talk to his pretty lunch date, only listen, as she pours out details of her heart. I love the growth we see in both characters, Dean and Carlie, by the end of the book, but oy, the pain of getting there!!

My fave character is often a supporting character who contributes to the necessary changes in one of the main characters, and without whom the story would be incomplete. Larry is the winner of that category in this book. He is a keen observer, actually of both Dean and Carlie, he has great insight, patience, tact, and loves others despite knowing their flaws. Plus he speaks the truth in love.

I would encourage you to see how Ms. Havig can turn a book with such an unusual premise into a real-life, believable, truth-filled novel you’ll long remember! Oh, yes, if you like to laugh out loud and read witticisms, those are bonus givens in Havig’s works!!

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I received a copy of the book from the author and Celebrate Lit, plus I bought my own. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

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Notable Quotables:

“They can’t seem to comprehend why it’s important to base their beliefs on Scripture over conventional wisdom.”

“…the only thing separating jock from jerk is a vowel.”

“While feelings are real, they do not always reflect truth.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

About the Author

USA Today Bestselling author of Aggie and Past Forward series, Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

More from Chautona

You know, originally, I had Dean as a guy who was too wrapped up in his own little world to care about anyone else—the stereotypical academic. I pictured him buried deep in original Biblical manuscripts, annoyed that anyone would dare to invade his study time.

But you know what? That’s the easycharacter.

When I went back to edit the book, I had this thought. What if Dean weren’t reclusive at all? What if he were kind of a know-it-all who couldn’t keep his thoughts to himself. Maybe a child prodigy who was used to people thinking him rather brilliant and looking for his insights.

Yeah… I could get into that.

There was just one small problem. I’d written the entire book without him talking much at all on those Wednesdays. Now what?

After much deliberation, even more prayer, and a bit of fudging, I came up with the solution. What if he just challenged himself for “one lunch?” Just one hour or so of not talking to prove to himself (and his peers) that he could do it.

How could he possibly know he’d set things up for months of wordless lunches—on his part? And what would a person learn in a situation like that?

I’ve never admitted this before, but I tested it a bit. At situations where I could, I forced myself to listen to people’s stories, their questions, their opinions. The hard part was not spending my listening time formulating my response (how rude anyway!). I really had to focus on exactly what they said, how their voice altered based on their emotions, and what others around us had to say to encourage (or not—too often not, I’ll admit).

I learned a lot with the experiment, and I’ll be honest. I still catch myself listening with an ear to how I’ll respond instead of really listening. No, I don’t expect to find some café romance for myself. My guy is amazing, and he’s probably the only person on the planet who could put up with me, so… I think I’ll keep him. But I do expect to keep learning how to really hear people. You know… kind of like Jesus did. Imagine that.

Blog Stops

Pause for Tales, May 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 9

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 10

Lots of Helpers, May 11

Miriam Jacob, May 11

Texas Book-aholic, May 12

By the Book, May 13

Inklings and notions, May 14

Spoken from the Heart, May 15

For Him and My Family, May 15

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 16

deb’s Book Review, May 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 18

Mary Hake, May 18

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, May 20

Blogging With Carol, May 21

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, May 21

Simple Harvest Reads, May 22 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a paperback copy of the book!!

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/1d735/corner-booth-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Favorite, Kindle, LibraryThing Early Readers, PB, Purchase, Revell

When the Meadow Blooms by Ann H Gabhart Review

About the Book

Title: When the Meadow Blooms

Author: Ann H Gabhart

Publisher: Revell

Released: May 3, 2022

From the back cover:

Hope blooms at Meadowland

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.

My Impressions

“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.

————————————————————————-

Notable Quotables:

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.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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.

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Kindle, Love Inspired Suspense, Purchase

Death Valley Hideout by Dana Mentink Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Death Valley Hideout

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre: Christian fiction

Release date: April 26, 2022

DV#4 cover, death valley hideout

Running from a murderer

with only the desert as refuge…

Placed in WITSEC while his brother testifies against a terrifying criminal, Tony Ortega must guard his young niece and nephew from the hit man hunting for them. Death Valley local Willow Duke’s hideout might just be the difference between the little family’s life or death. When bullets start flying, can they thwart a killer long enough to survive and become a family for real?

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

Dana Mentink once again gets the heart racing and turns up the heat in her Death Valley Hideout (#4 Desert Justice Book).

Willow Duke gets her story along with Tony Ortega. Problem is, Willow gets to know Tony and his children under false circumstances. Now they’re all in danger. Will Willow help Tony after this egregious deception, or will she walk away?

So many fun things about this book. A pairing of a quiet man with an impetuous woman. A four-year-old boy and an eighteen-month-old girl. That’ll get me every time! A down-home friend babysitting for her pal, committed first to the children. Mentink knows her desert setting, and displays a knowledge of helicopters and planes. Mentink provides rescuers who are wildcards. Ante up the suspense fast!! And last but not least, the Duke clan, all come together to help one of their own. “Well, Tony, you’re in for more help that you know what to do with. You request one Duke, you get them all.”

Not to be left out, the faith element. So important. I love the way Mentink shows the value of frequent prayer in the characters’ lives, allowing us to participate in their prayers. I got a very real sense of Tony’s and Willow’s dependence on God.

I read faster and faster, trying to outread speeding bullets, cars, and helicopters. And, of course, finger where the true danger lay. Well done, Ms. Mentink!

I received a copy of the book from Celebrate Lit. I also bought my own copy. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

Notable Quotables:

“You messed up, Tony. You never should have let her into your life. You can’t afford to have friends. Period.”

“You were friends with a guy who knowingly made you a target without your permission. In my book that’s no kind of friend.”

“But the Maestro hadn’t counted on one thing…he’d never met the Duke family.”

“…the Bible said it was possible to do anything that God wanted done. But being a substitute parent? Him? It was a tall order for a guy who couldn’t even keep a houseplant alive.”

“Love is not dependent on behavior.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Magnificent!! More Desert, More Heat, More Dukes!!

About the Author

Dana Mentink is a USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author as well as a two-time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, and the recipient of a Holt Medallion. She’s written over fifty titles in the suspense, lighthearted romance and mystery genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, Harlequin Heartwarming, and Poisoned Pen Press. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

More from Dana

Wooty woo! We’re back in Death Valley again! So excited about this fourth book in the series because Papa Bear and I have actually returned to this amazing place. (Our previous return trip was stalled for a while due to the virus that shall not be named!) People have asked me, “Why do you love Death Valley so much?” I can only respond that you just have to go there to understand. Is it the vastness of the place? The enormous topographical variety? Maybe it’s the profound quietness that permeates the national park and environs. Then again, it might be the panorama of nighttime stars. (Death Valley National Park is a certified International Dark Sky Park due to its limited light pollution.) Could it be the tenacity of people who live there and survive the one hundred twenty plus degree temperatures in the summer? And how about those animals? The Death Valley pupfish is a teeny little endangered fish that lives in precisely one spot on the globe (Death Valley) and only two places within that range, Salt Creek and Cottonball Marsh. Imagine that! So why set a six book series in Death Valley? Because there’s no more hostile and incredible place I can think of. I hope you will enjoy taking a fictional trip with me there too. Enjoy the adventure, reader friends!

Blog Stops

Remembrancy, April 21

Texas Book-aholic, April 21

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 22

Bigreadersite, April 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 23

Life, Love, Writing, April 24

For Him and My Family, April 24

Betti Mace, April 25

Inklings and notions, April 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 26

EmpowerMoms, April 26

deb’s Book Review, April 27

Blogging With Carol, April 27

For the Love of Literature, April 28

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 28

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 29

Simple Harvest Reads, April 29 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 30

Vicarious Living, April 30

Bizwings Blog, May 1

Blossoms and Blessings, May 1

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 2

Paula’s Persuasion, May 2

Labor Not in Vain, May 3

Through the Fire Blogs, May 3

Pause for Tales, May 4

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, May 4

To Everything There Is A Season, May 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize package of the first four books in the series-Framed in Death Valley, Missing in the Desert, Death Valley Doublecross and Death Valley Hideout (Paperback for U.S. Only) and a $50 Amazon gift 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/1d0af/death-valley-hideout-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Kindle, Purchase

Flower of the Rockies by Angela Breidenbach Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Flower of the Rockies

Author: Angela Breidenbach

Genre: Historical Romance

Release date: December 1, 2021

QotR-Book4

Helena MT, 1892-95 ~ Can you leave your past behind?
Flower of the Rockies, the 4th book in the Queen of the Rockies series set in picturesque Helena MT at the end of the Gilded Age. No one knows the real Emmalee Warren, or the sacrifices she’s made for love. An infamous soiled dove of no consequence turned miner’s widow. Men are coming out of the woodwork to stake their claim on her and the mine she inherited. They wanted her body before. Now they want her money, and they’ll do anything to take it. But love and acceptance seem out of the question for Emmalee.

Society wants nothing to do with her regardless of her changed ways. Who can she turn to when her inheritance and chance at a future is at risk? Will she be forced back into the brothel to survive? Hiring a lawyer, Richard Lewis, to save her from financial ruin might let her start over somewhere else — if he can save a little of her finances from her husband’s partner. She’ll go anyplace else where no one knows Miss Ellie’s name. Anywhere to leave the scorn behind. Becoming an unknown is the only way to freedom…or is it? Can she leave her past and build a new future?

Click here to get your copy!

My Impressions

Angela Breidenbach comes back strong with another tale of Montana, in the infancy of its statehood (1894). This engaging novel follows the soiled dove Emmalee Warren, who is struggling to overcome her past. Given an unexpected chance to escape that past, she discovers many of the towns people are all too happy to remember her for who she was, not who she is. Fortunately, a few people truly live out God’s unconditional love to her. “They do know what we been. But who we are is not what we done…”

Richard Lewis is the new lawyer Emmalee hires to help her stop her late husband’s conniving, cheating partner. I love the way that Lewis sees Emmalee as valuable and worth his help. “If God thinks enough to count your individual tears and record them in his book, then he finds you invaluable, Emmalee…” Lewis doesn’t minimize the opposition Emmalee faces, but he is willing to pave the way for her. “The best way through a wall is to walk through a door. I would like to be that doorway for you.”

We also get to see friends from earlier books. It is thrilling to see them with their new families, rising to new challenges.

I was glad to see a certain unkind character. Not because I liked her, but because real life is like that. Given a large group of people, it seems there has to be one that doesn’t even attempt to live up to what they profess. Who will win over the public sentiment?

Concluding with “Conversation starter ideas for book clubs” (a great title and some thought provoking questions that tie in with the book), Breidenbach includes more tourist ideas as well.

I received a copy of the book from the author via Celebrate Lit. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

Notable Quotables:

“Someday happens because you plan for it.”

“True religion wasn’t running from the past. True religion is letting God use her broken past to help someone else.”

About the Author

Angela Breidenbach is a professional genealogist, media personality, conference speaker, bestselling author of eighteen books, and screenwriter. Angela lives in Montana with her hubby and Muse, a trained fe-lion, who shakes hands, rolls over, and jumps through a hoop. Surprisingly, Angela can also. Catch her show and podcast, Genealogy Publishing Coach!

More from Angela

Flower of the Rockies is one of my favorite stories. I didn’t realize when I started writing about the Montana state flower that I’d be digging into a deeper part of myself. A part I didn’t want to remember.

Stumbling on the women’s club that worked so hard to create symbolism for the state of Montana sparked a story idea. Then that idea needed a character help me tell the story. Then she told me she didn’t know how to read. Okay, I can run with that… But I’m a really good reader. So how do I connect to this widow who needs to learn to read to stop her husband’s partner from cooking her books and stealing everything she has left?

It hit me. She and I had a lot in common. As a kid, I was awkward. I didn’t connect well because I couldn’t read people. Ironically, I read books to learn about people. But it took getting out and being with people to begin really connecting and communicating.

Emmalee doesn’t want to be around people because she’s been rejected for her past and ridiculed publicly. Who wants to be friends with a soiled dove? But, she’s lonely. I suddenly connected on an even deeper level with her. I understood her need for love and acceptance. Her desire to become someone respectable.

On a bigger scale, that’s what the women of Montana were trying to prove, too. That their state fit in with the other states, had something special, something symbolic that showed she was accepted and respected. She had a flag, a state flower, and people who mattered.

Come join me in the Flower of the Rockies. I think you’ll like Emmalee and her journey toward acceptance. There are a lot of layers to the story’s symbolism. I wrote it and have been amazed at how God keeps revealing those layers to me in one short book. Let me know what is revealed to you.

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, April 18

Inklings and notions, April 19

Spoken from the Heart, April 19

Betti Mace, April 20

Slyvan Musings, April 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 21

deb’s Book Review, April 22

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 23

Pause for Tales, April 23

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 24

Simple Harvest Reads, April 25

For Him and My Family, April 26

Blossoms and Blessings, April 26

Tell Tale Book Reviews, April 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 27

Connie’s History Classroom, April 28

Mary Hake, April 28

Blogging With Carol, April 29

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 30

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 1

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Angela is giving away the grand prize of a pair of iolite and sterling silver earrings!!

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/1cc83/flower-of-the-rockies-celebration-tour-giveaway

Bethany House, BLOG, Celebrate Lit Tour, Favorite, Kindle, NetGalley, Purchase

Peace in the Mountain Haven by Misty Beller Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: Peace in the Mountain Haven

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre: Christian historical romance

Release date: March 15, 2022

Peace in the Mountain Haven Cover

This epic journey is her best chance to find the family she and her daughter long for.

Watkuese is desperate to return across the Rocky Mountains before winter sets in. Time is running out for her to get her adopted daughter back to the familiar surroundings of the Shoshone village before the grief of her parents’ death causes irreparable damage.

Hugh Charpentier has spent his life watching over his siblings, which meant also ensuring his brother’s widow and babe are settled well into their new life. Now he’s asked to help shepherd a woman and child he barely knows across the mountains. As hard as it is to keep up with a six-year-old in the treacherous Rockies, it’s not nearly as dangerous as risking his heart to a woman and child who may not ever be his.

From a USA Today bestselling author comes another epic journey through breathless landscapes and adventure so intense, lives will never be the same.

Click here to get your copy! $3, $15, $30

My Impressions

Ack!! Misty Beller is another author whose books I am starting to really anticipate! I was not overly impressed by the first book I read, but now, I am hopelessly a fan. Peace in the Mountain Haven is on my favorites list. Beller’s beautiful mountain settings, multi-cultural characters, and ability to recount a compelling story of both faith and love have me hooked.

In 1831, the future Idaho Territory area is home to Watkuese, a single Native American, who is raising her deceased friend’s six-year-old daughter, Pop-pank. Searching for inner peace for herself and her sullen, grieving charge, Watkuese decides to return to Pop-pank’s tribal home. Hugh Charpentier and his brother, Louis, are assigned to accompany the two back to the village.

Watkuese is a strong, independent woman who wants to make her own way and rely on no one. She is not close to the family she has, but considers Pop-pank “the daughter of her heart” and will give her life to protect the stand-offish young one.

Hugh Charpentier is a white trapper who is hardened to relationships with others because of his past. “The more you kept your distance from others, the easier it was to part ways.” He is very aloof, but he still takes great care of Wautkuese and Pop-pank. With enough nurturing, will a tender, dedicated heart emerge?

I loved Louis. He is such a happy soul, yet it is not because his life is easy. He chooses to look for ways to engage others and make them feel comfortable. He can see past walls built up to protect a heart, and isn’t afraid to meddle to encourage better thinking.

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. I also bought a copy. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

Notable Quotables:

Firewood he knew far better than people.

She’d already promised herself she would give her life to protect Pop-pank. Should she give her freedom as well?

If only he could be the man Louis thought he was.

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Magnificent!! A Beautiful Frontier Fave!!

About the Author

Misty M. Belleris a USA Todaybestselling author of romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

Raised on a farm and surrounded by family, Misty developed her love for horses, history, and adventure. These days, her husband and children provide fresh adventure every day, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

Misty’s passion is to create inspiring Christian fiction infused with the grandeur of the mountains, writing historical romance that displays God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Sharing her stories with readers is a dream come true for Misty. She writes from her country home in South Carolina and escapes to the mountains any chance she gets.

More from Misty

What do you love most about this genre?

I tend to be a bit of a sentimentalist, so Historical Romance is perfect for me! My favorite period is between 1800 – 1880, when the west was still an extreme frontier. I love the simpler life, where there’s no rat race. Just hard work, plenty of alone time (can you tell I’m an introvert?), and a strong family unit.

Are readers always promised a “happily ever after” in your novels? Why or why not?

Absolutely! I read as an escape, so that happily ever after is important to me. I know my characters will face challenges after the story ends, but I want to finish the book knowing they’ve grown through the story and will be able to meet future struggles with God’s strength and the support of each other—as well as family and friends!

How can readers connect with you?

I love to connect with readers! One of my favorite ways is through my newsletter, and readers can get a free copy of my book, A Pony Express Romance, when they sign up for the newsletter. Here’s the link for that: https://mistymbeller.com/freebook

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 7

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 8

Miriam Jacob, April 8

Texas Book-aholic, April 9

Inklings and notions, April 10

Mary Hake, April 10

For Him and My Family, April 11

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, April 12

deb’s Book Review, April 12

Betti Mace, April 13

Bizwings Blog, April 13

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 14

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 15

Connie’s History Classroom, April 16

For the Love of Literature, April 16

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 17

Splashes of Joy, April 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 18

Blossoms and Blessings, April 19

Pause for Tales, April 20

Jeanette’s Thoughts, April 20

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift 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/1c94c/peace-in-the-mountain-haven-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG, Celebrate Lit Publishers, Favorite, Kindle, Purchase

Madness in Wonderland by Tabitha Bouldin Review

About the Book

Title: Madness in Wonderland

Series: #1 Beyond Wonderland

Author: Tabitha Bouldin

Publisher: Celebrate Lit

Released: March 2022

Wonderland is in trouble. 

Under the rule of the Red Queen, Wonderland is under constant threat. In fear for her throne, children are taken into the queen’s army and only the strongest survive.

Alice is nothing but a pirate, but with the help of Hatter, they hatch a plan to sneak into the Red Queen’s palace to free Hatter’s sister. After all, Alice has always wanted to fly an airship.

Dr. Frank N. Stein has created an army of automatons to serve their queen. Of particular note: a prototype soldier. Part man. Part machine. The best of both worlds.

Doc’s monster is a threat to everything they know, but Alice sees something in the man that begs she look beyond what he’s done and search out the heart of the beast for the better of the realm.

He’s their only hope of survival, but how can a monster learn to love when all he’s known is hate?

My Impressions

“I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast,”- Alice in Alice in Wonderland

Wow, was I in awe of Tabitha Bouldin’s steampunk retelling of Alice in Wonderland by the time I finished! I started the novel with trepidation. I didn’t remember the original making a lot of sense, and I wondered what I was in for with Bouldin’s Madness in Wonderland. Madness is a gem!!

Why do I love this book? For the first time in my life, the pieces of Alice in Wonderland fit together like a puzzle. Bouldin clearly delineates narrator/subject by rotating chapters. Alpha, Alice, and Hatter are all featured. Bouldin allows characters to retain much of the personality that Carroll gave them, but adds depth and emotion to each. It was easy to follow the great action, which is plentiful and compelling. Apropos quotes from the original Alice in Wonderland are worked in so beautifully to the new story. There are a few nods to Star Wars, the sci-fi scenery is easy to imagine, and faith plays a major, natural role. God is referred to as the Master. Each character must decide what he will do once confronted with knowledge of the Master.

Themes include the existence of a Master who created their world and loves individuals. Judgment, hope, and forgiveness follow close behind.

Those who love the original Alice in Wonderland, fairytale retellings, sci-fi, or Kara Swanson’s author voice will love this novel. I am excited that it is the first in its series!

I received a copy of the book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit. No positive review was required, and all opinions are my own.

Notable Quotables:

“Family means different things to different people.

“Everyone needs a name. Names have power. They tell us who we are, where we’ve come from. -Alice

“If the Maker can forgive one like me, He can forgive anyone.” -Cook

“Soldiers don’t have the lux’ry of a clean soul. Took a long time for me to accept my past and let Someone help with the pain.”Cook (Chess)

“You believe you don’t deserve forgiveness, so you condemn others to the same fate.”

My Rating

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Magnificent!! Reminds me of Kara Swanson’s Dust and Shadow!!

About the Author

Tabitha Bouldin has a bachelor’s degree in creative writing/English from Southern New Hampshire University. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and has been writing since 2015. When she’s not homeschooling her kids, you’ll find her curled up with a book. Tabitha’s genre of choice is Contemporary Christian Romance which she describes as: Adventure with heart.