Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Murder Comes By Mail by A. H. Gabhart



Murder Comes By Mail
A Hidden Springs Mystery, Book 2
ISBN-13: 978-0800727055
Baker Publishing Group, May 2016

Deputy Sheriff Michael Keane doesn’t particularly enjoy being touted as the hero of Hidden Springs after pulling a suicidal man back from the edge of the Eagle River bridge in front of dozens of witnesses–a few of whom caught the breathtaking moments with their cameras. But the media hype doesn’t last long as a new story pushes its way into the public consciousness of Hidden Springs’ concerned citizens.

Photos of a dead girl arrive in the mail, and Michael becomes convinced she was murdered by the man he saved. With a killer one step ahead, things in Hidden Springs begin to unravel. Now Michael must protect the people he loves–because the killer could be targeting one of them next.

Readers will love racing along with Deputy Sheriff Keane as the clock ticks in this page-turner.

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My Review: This is such a cozy, easy read mystery. It is unique, at least to me, in the fact that it is told exclusively from the hero's point of view. I've read very few books that are from only the male's point of view. The simplicity in which this book is written gives the book a down to earth feel. I loved the small town feel of Hidden Springs.

As for the characters, they are highly entertaining. They are everything I picture small town folks to be. Each person plays a role in solving the deadly game that has been foisted upon Deputy Sheriff Michael Keane, and sometimes it's quite humorous. Throughout most of the story, we see Michael struggling to let go of his worries so God can work in and around his life. Every Christian can relate to that same struggle (or at least I can)!

Overall, I really enjoyed this sleepy town novel, full of fun, loving people with good intentions and a deadly plot that will keep you guessing until the very end. (Note: this is the second book in the Hidden Springs Mystery series, but it can be read stand alone.)

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Revell Reads blogging program in exchange for my honest review, which I have given.*



Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, and Words Spoken True, as well as several Shaker novels--The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted--and The Heart of Hollyhill series. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Becky Wade’s ‘Her One and Only’ Porter Prize Pack and $100 Cash Card Giveaway | Book Review

her one and only - 400Meet Dru Porter, former Marine, expert markswoman, and black belt—who also happens to be assigned as a bodyguard to star NFL tight end Gray Fowler. Don't miss the final Porter family novel by Becky Wade, Her One and Only. Gray starts receiving death threats from a stalker, and Dru is determined to find his stalker. Every secret that leads Dru closer to the stalker also draws her closer to Gray. As the danger escalates, they’ll survive only if they can learn to trust their lives—and their hearts—to one another.

Landing page:
My Review: Talk about a book hangover!! I finished Her One and Only last night and sat there after putting it down thinking...WOW. I am pretty sure this is my favorite out of all of the Porter family novels. I loved the flow and feel of this novel. Becky Wade has a knack for creating life-like characters with genuine emotions and reactions. She pulls you into a story and leaves you wanting more at the end (in the best possible way, of course).

Speaking of characters, I absolutely LOVED Dru and Gray. Dru is everything I wish I could be: strong, independent, feisty, and did I mention strong!! She has her flaws, of course, like everyone else. Grayson had my heart from the beginning. Like Dru, I couldn't help but to be drawn into his life. I was curious about him. I wanted to know what made him tick, what made him keep people at arm's length. His broken family is something I can definitely relate to. Their relationship had me in tears at some points I was laughing so hard. Their banter and the sparks that they both tried to ignore were entertaining! I also loved catching up with the rest of the Porter crew: Meg and Bo, Celia and Ty, and Jake and Lyndie.

The message of this story is about letting go. Dru and Gray both have things in their past that have defined how they view life today. By not letting go of those things, they are holding God back from what He can do in their life. As the verse at the end states, by letting go, we can embrace the "new things" God has for us.

Overall, I'm sad that the Porter Family series has come to an end, but I couldn't have asked for a better conclusion to one of the best family series I've ever read!

"See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland." - Isaiah 43:19

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Litfuse Blogging program in exchange for my honest review*

About the book: 
Her One and Only
 (Bethany House, May 2016)
After ten years in the NFL, super star Gray Fowler is accustomed to obsessive fans.
But when Gray starts receiving death threats from a stalker, his team hires an executive protection agency to guard him until the culprit is caught. Dealing with bodyguards 24/7 is a headache, especially when one of them is a young, beautiful woman. How can a female half his size possibly protect him better than he can protect himself?
Dru Porter is a former Marine, an expert markswoman, and a black belt---none of which saved her from disaster on her last assignment. In order to rebuild her tarnished reputation, she's determined to find Gray's stalker and, since relationships between agents and clients are forbidden, avoid a romantic attachment between herself and the rugged football player with the mysterious past.
Yet every secret that leads Dru closer to the stalker also draws her closer to Gray. As the danger escalates, they'll survive only if they can learn to trust their lives---and their hearts---to one another. 

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1NrA4cO
About the author:


Becky Wade
 is a native of California who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and now lives in Dallas. A favorite among readers of Christian contemporary romance, Becky has won a Carol Award, an Inspirational Reader's Choice Award, and an INSPY Award.






Join Becky in celebrating the release of Her One and Only by entering to win her Porter prize pack and $100 cash card giveaway!
her one and only - prize collage


One grand prize winner will receive:
A copy of Her One and Only
A $100 cash card
Follow Your Heart tote bag
24 oz Tervis Wonder Woman Tumbler

The Blind Side DVD

Necklace with star charm
Porter Family navy jersey
 Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry! The giveaway ends on May 31st. The winner will be announced June 1st on the Litfuse blog.

her-one-and-only-enter

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Every Bride Has Her Day by Janice Thompson



Every Bride Has Her Day
Brides With Style, Book 3
ISBN-13: 9780800724016
Baker Publishing Group
May 2016

Katie Fisher is ecstatic. Pro basketball star Brady James has proposed, and she can’t wait to start planning their life together. She’s confident she’ll make it down the aisle this time–but it still may be easier said than done.

A high-society Houston bride has Katie and the Cosmopolitan Bridal team scrambling to get the perfect dress done in time for her spectacular wedding. Meanwhile, Katie finds herself bombarded with everyone’s competing visions regarding her own special day–and she’s beginning to worry that her own ideas will get lost in the crossfire. Will she ever manage to settle all of the details for her perfect day? Or will bridal shop chaos and overzealous friends and family make a mess of everything?

Fan favorite Janice Thompson gives readers what they’ve been clamoring for: another funny, romantic romp with a Texas twang.

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Other books in the Brides with Style Series:

My Review: Janice Thompson's latest book, Every Bride Has Her Day, is the perfect ending to the Brides with Style Series. It's been an absolute blast following Katie and Brady on their journey. I've enjoyed visiting Cosmopolitan Bride in Dallas and Katie's hometown of Fairfield. Each place reminds me of my hometown and the feelings of love and family that come with it. I'm kinda sad that the journey is over.

As I was reading this story, Katie really reminded me of myself. Her "eager to please everyone" attitude is so much like my own.  I love how Brady kept reminding her that their wedding day was really all about what they wanted, not what everyone else wanted. His attitude is the perfect compliment to hers. The love they have for each other shines through the pages. It's breathtaking!

The message of the story is clearly defined in Philippians 4:12: I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry whether living in plenty or in want. Each person in this story is learning a lesson about seasons and what it's like to have it all and then what it's like to feel at your lowest. It's a beautiful lesson that we all need to learn from.

Overall, I couldn't have asked for a better conclusion to the Brides with Style series and I can't wait to see what fantastic stories Janice cooks up next!

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Revell Reads program in exchange for my honest review.*



Award-winning author Janice Thompson also writes under the pseudonym Janice Hanna. She got her start in the industry writing screenplays and musical comedies for the stage. Janice has published over 100 books for the Christian market, crossing genre lines to write cozy mysteries, historicals, romances, nonfiction books, devotionals, children’s books and more. She particularly enjoys writing light-hearted, comedic tales because she enjoys making readers laugh.

Janice was named the 2008 Mentor of the year for ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers). She currently serves as president of her local ACFW chapter (Writers on the Storm), where she regularly teaches on the craft of writing.

Janice is passionate about her faith and does all she can to share the joy of the Lord with others, which is why she particularly enjoys writing. Her tagline, “Love, Laughter, and Happily Ever Afters!” sums up her take on life.

She lives in Spring, Texas, where she leads a rich life with her family, a host of writing friends, and two mischievous dachshunds. When she’s not busy writing or playing with her eight grandchildren, Janice can be found in the kitchen, baking specialty cakes and cookies for friends and loved ones. No matter what she’s cooking up—books, cakes, cookies or mischief—she does her best to keep the Lord at the center of it all.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Every Girl Gets Confused by Janice Thompson



Every Girl Gets Confused
Brides With Style, Book 2
ISBN-13: 978-0800724009
Baker Publishing Group
October 2015

How can she choose between the love she thought she lost and the love she stumbled upon in the aftermath?

Katie Fisher and Brady James may be a match made in heaven, but that doesn’t seem to guarantee them a happily ever after accompanied by angelic choirs.

Katie’s almost-fiancĂ© Casey is back in Fairfield, ready to rekindle their relationship. And there’s nothing Katie’s parents want more than for their small-town girl to leave Dallas and come home for good.

But can she really leave Brady behind? And will she ever be able to wear that gorgeous wedding dress she won?

Get Your Copy: B&N | Amazon | CBD
Every Bride Needs A Groom, Brides With Style - Book 1 Review

My Review: It's been almost a year since I read the first book in the Brides with Style series, Every Bride Needs A Groom, and I had forgotten just how much fun Janice Thompson's books are! Every Girl Gets Confused is a breath of fresh air with sweet Southern charm. I read the story in my head with a thick, southern drawl. I loved returning to Cosmopolitan Bride and catching up with all my favorite characters.

I still love Katie Sue Fisher. She is everything sweet, humble, and just all around good. Watching her relationship with Brady grow and change warmed my heart. Speaking of Brady, his trials broke my heart! I wanted to just hug that sweet man.... and shake him at the same time. The ups and downs of his emotions helped me understand the confusion Katie endured, and I surely sympathized with her.

The message of the story is about seasons. Our lives aren't perfect just because we believe in the Lord and follow His commands. There are "seasons" we have to go through in order to embrace the life God wants for us. How we handle those seasons is what counts. As Katie's brother, Jasper, reminds her, "worry doesn't empty tomorrow of it's sorrow, it empties today of it's strength." Both Brady and Katie navigate this "season" of confusion and depression in different ways, but the end result was the same.

Overall, I highly enjoyed this fun, light-hearted story that perfectly fits Janice Thompson's tag line "Love, Laughter, and Happily Ever After."!



Award-winning author Janice Thompson also writes under the pseudonym Janice Hanna. She got her start in the industry writing screenplays and musical comedies for the stage. Janice has published over 100 books for the Christian market, crossing genre lines to write cozy mysteries, historicals, romances, nonfiction books, devotionals, children’s books and more. She particularly enjoys writing light-hearted, comedic tales because she enjoys making readers laugh.

Janice was named the 2008 Mentor of the year for ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers). She currently serves as president of her local ACFW chapter (Writers on the Storm), where she regularly teaches on the craft of writing.

Janice is passionate about her faith and does all she can to share the joy of the Lord with others, which is why she particularly enjoys writing. Her tagline, “Love, Laughter, and Happily Ever Afters!” sums up her take on life.

She lives in Spring, Texas, where she leads a rich life with her family, a host of writing friends, and two mischievous dachshunds. When she’s not busy writing or playing with her eight grandchildren, Janice can be found in the kitchen, baking specialty cakes and cookies for friends and loved ones. No matter what she’s cooking up—books, cakes, cookies or mischief—she does her best to keep the Lord at the center of it all.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Quieting by Suzanne Woods Fisher



The Quieting
The Bishop's Family (Book 2)
Publication date:05/03/2016
ISBN-13: 9780800723217
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group

The Stoltzfus family faces serious problems, both in the church and at home. Everyone in the community expects minister David Stoltzfus to fix things--fast. But David doesn't work fast. He prefers to wait for God to work in individual hearts. However, even he is left wondering if the solution to their most pressing problem might be a Quieting.

When David's mother arrives, uninvited, more upheaval is in store. She has matchmaking plans for everyone in the family, including David and her eligible granddaughters--and especially for David's niece Abigail. When Abigail stumbles onto a curious connection during her genealogical research, it could help David solve one problem--but will it create another?

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The Imposter, The Bishop's Family (Book 1)

My Review: I was so excited to get this book! I loved the first book in the Bishop Family series, The Imposter, so I jumped at the chance to review The Quieting. I was not disappointed. I was so excited to return to Stoney Ridge and the Stoltzfus family.

Their family dynamic is very interesting for an Amish family, and became even more interesting with the addition of David's nieces and mother. I loved picking up with David where we left off. He is a prime example of a man and a pastor who makes mistakes and learns and grows from them. He embraces the challenges God gives him, and handles them with as much grace and mercy as God gives him. His treatment of Birdy in this story tore at my heart, but of course, the end result is what matters! Abigail was an interesting character. Her outlook on life was clearly black and white. I loved watching her change and grow throughout the story with the help of Dane. Catching up with Katrina, Ruthie, Jesse and all of the other Stoney Ridge characters was an added bonus!

As with The Imposter, there are many lessons to be learned from this story. The main points, I think, are learning to let go of the past and taking the time to listen, REALLY listen for God's guidance. Abigail's work on genealogy is important, but it kept her focus on the past. Dane, through God's guidance, helped her see what was right in front of her! David and the little church of Stoney Ridge were facing what seemed to be an insurmountable problem. He had to learn to listen for God's prompting as to how to handle the situation.

Overall, I loved this book. It's an excellent addition to the Bishop Family series and I can't wait to read The Devoted, book three (coming Fall 2016!!).

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Revell Reads blogging program in exchange for my honest review.*



Suzanne Woods Fisher is a bestselling author of Amish fiction and non-fiction. Her interest in the Amish began with her grandfather, who was raised Plain in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. She travels back east a couple of times each year for research. For fun, too.

Suzanne has a great admiration for the Plain people and believes they provide wonderful examples to the world. She has an underlying belief in her books–you don’t have to “go Amish” to incorporate many of their principles into your life: simplicity, living with less, appreciating nature, forgiving others more readily, trusting in God.

When Suzanne isn’t writing, playing tennis, or bragging to her friends about her grandbabies (so cute!), she is raising puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. To her way of thinking, you just can’t take life too seriously when a puppy is tearing through your house with someone’s underwear in its mouth.

Keep up on Suzanne’s latest news by receiving her e-newsletter, as well as connecting on Facebook, Twitter and her blog!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Mermaid Mood by Colleen Coble



Mermaid Moon
A Sunset Cove Novel, Book 2
Thomas Nelson Inc.
January 2016
ISBN: 9781401690281

Mallory’s mother died fifteen years ago. But her father’s last words on the phone were unmistakable: “Find . . . mother.”

Shame and confusion have kept Mallory Davis from her home for the last fifteen years, but when her dad mysteriously dies on his mail boat route, she doesn’t have any choice but to go back to Mermaid Point.

Mallory believes her father was murdered and childhood sweetheart Kevin O’Connor, game warden in Downeast Maine, confirms her suspicions. But Kevin is wary of helping Mallory in her search. She broke his heart and left—without a word—years ago.

When Mallory begins receiving threats on her own life—and her beloved teenage daughter, Haylie—their search intensifies. There’s a tangled web within the supposed murder, and it involves much more than what meets the eye.

As answers begin to fall into place, Mallory realizes her search is about more than finding her father’s killer—it is also about finding herself again . . . and possibly about healing what was broken so long ago with Kevin. She just has to stay alive long enough to put all the pieces together.

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Book Review: The Inn at Ocean's Edge, A Sunset Cove Novel, Book 1

My Review: I've never read a book by Colleen Coble that I didn't like. This is definitely no exception! Since she is one of my all time favorite authors, I've come to expect a lot from her stories. Suspense, mystery, intrigue, romance, and of course a strong Christian message. Mermaid Moon has it all. I enjoyed catching up with Claire, Kate, and Luke, as well as heading back to Sunset Cove. Colleen Coble's descriptions made me feel like I was riding the mail boat with Mallory and Kevin, chasing down the mystery of her father's death.

I love Mallory and Kevin. I love every part about their story. Mallory is sweet, kind, and doing her best to survive being a single parent. Her strength is inspiring. After all the heartache she's had to endure, it's amazing she can keep her head up. Kevin is the kind of man any woman would love to fall in love with. He's kind, smart, and watching him care for his daughter is endearing. The obstacles that Kevin and Mallory have to overcome seem insurmountable in the beginning. Fear of letting go, making more mistakes, and embracing what God has hold them back from experiencing the life they are meant to live.

The message of the story, as Colleen Coble states in her note to the reader, is about second chances. As Colleen says, "When we're stuck in unforgiveness, we can't be completely free in our lives because we're too worried about making mistakes. But mistakes are part of life. We learn and grow from them. Embrace the journey and make those mistakes. Become better and stronger through them!" Both Kevin and Mallory have to face their mistakes, forgive themselves and each other, in order to gain all God has in store for their lives.

Overall, I loved this story (was there really ever a question of whether or not I would?!). I can't wait to read more from this exciting and suspenseful author.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Book Look Blogging Program in exchange for my honest review.*



Best-selling author Colleen Coble’s novels have won or finaled in awards ranging from the Best Books of Indiana, the ACFW Carol Award, the Romance Writers of America RITA, the Holt Medallion, the Daphne du Maurier, National Readers’ Choice, and the Booksellers Best. She has over 2 million books in print and writes romantic mysteries because she loves to see justice prevail. Colleen is CEO of American Christian Fiction Writers. She lives with her husband Dave in Indiana.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The Pursuit of Lucy Banning by Olivia Newport



The Pursuit of Lucy Banning
Avenue of Dreams, Book 1
Revell | Baker Publishing Group 2012
ISBN-13: 9780800720384

Lucy Banning may live on the exclusive Prairie Avenue among Chicago’s rich and famous, but her heart lies elsewhere. Expected to marry an up-and-coming banker, the son of family friends, Lucy fears she will be forced to abandon what matters to her most—her work at the orphanage and the classes she is secretly taking at the newly opened University of Chicago.

When she meets Will Edwards, an unconventional young architect working on plans for the 1893 World’s Fair, Lucy imagines a life lived on her own terms. A new young maid brings her own secret to the Banning household, and Lucy must choose between deeply held values.

Can Lucy find love and live out of her compassionate heart?

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My Review: Welcome to Chicago during one of its most exciting times in history! Olivia Newport transports you back to Chicago during the planning and revealing of the Worlds Fair. Her attention to detail really immersed me into the Bannings' lives. I could feel the excitement, tension, love, and happiness thrumming throughout the Banning household. The fact that they were a prominent family, but chose not to flaunt it overly much made them all the more likable.

I instantly liked Lucy Banning. She truly was a kind-hearted soul who frequently went above and beyond the "expected" call of duty for those in her station. That, and her independent spirit, had me caught up in her life from beginning to end. The situation with Will intrigued me. I wish there would have been more interaction between him and the Banning family, and more from his point of view in the story. I don't feel I got to know him well. Charlotte Farrow's side story was compelling, to say the least, and I'm excited to read more of it next.

I couldn't pick out a strong message or lesson, which was fine. The way Lucy lived her life is a shining example of how a Christian should be. Her gentleness with the kids at the orphanage, love for her family, and kind-hearted, giving spirit are great indicators of God's hand on her life. Overall, I enjoyed Lucy's story. I look forward to reading more from Olivia Newport.



Olivia Newport's novels twist through time to discover where faith and passions meet. Her husband and two twenty-something children provide welcome distraction from the people stomping through her head on their way into her books. She chases joy in stunning Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where day lilies grow as tall as she is.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Saving Taya by B. Benfield



Saving Taya
Faith and Love Series, #2
ISBN-13: 9781945011115
Publisher: Evermore

Taya's faith in God was unflappable, until fate played a cruel trick on her. On the cusp of finding out her boyfriend is actually married, and leaving her once-loved career, she decides, with the help of her beloved grandmother, to start over by moving back home to Virginia to run the family gift shop. She never expected to meet the town cop, Carter.

Carter fights his own demons, but his faith in God's ultimate plan stays strong. Sensing Taya's inner struggle, he works at helping her find her way again. However, life slaps Taya in the face once again, destroying her already precarious faith in God. Carter's by her side, never losing his belief in Taya. Each day spent with her, his feelings for her become stronger. Taya, enduring one of life's many battles, feels the same for Carter.

When Carter has to make a trip back home to Texas, Taya is left behind and discovers just how punishing life can be. Kidnapped and scared, Taya finally turns to God and prays. Prays she'll make it out alive, prays she'll see the man she's coming to love, and prays she'll make it back to her ailing grandmother.

Will Carter make it back in time to save Taya before her newly-found faith dissolves?

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My review: Saving Taya is completely different from the first book in the Faith and Love series, Sophia Redeemed. I thoroughly enjoyed the change of pace. To me, it shows how versatile B. Benfield can be in her writing style. I loved how steady this book progressed. I'm still getting used to the first person point of view the author prefers, but she provides enough detail about the other person's expressions so I can know their thoughts too.

Taya's past isn't ideal. She made some mistakes, drifting from her faith, that she regrets. Her struggle to accept the forgiveness so freely given her from our Lord is evident throughout the story. At some points in the story, I felt as if I was drowning in the worry and guilt with Taya. Carter is a strong, stalwart character. His understanding of his faith truly amazed me when I found out he was a "new" Christian. The fact that he fully embraced his salvation, forgiveness and love shines through on every page! Their romance is sweet, building slowly through the story. It was nice getting to see how Matt and Sophia were doing. I'm glad they made an appearance. 

The message of the story is about forgiveness and salvation. Carter and Taya both embrace the Salvation Jesus provides, but struggle with letting go of their own feelings of guilt, fear, and unworthiness. Carter is good for Taya. He really helps her grow, bringing the importance of living right to the fore front.

Overall, I enjoyed Saving Taya and I look forward to more from this amazing author.

*I received a complimentary copy from the author in exchange for my honest review.*



About the Author:  B. Benfield is a Contemporary Christian Romance author. She got her start writing New Adult Romance. She went on to self-publish four novels before ultimately deciding to take those books off the shelves, follow her heart, and pursue Christian Romance.

She’s a banker by day and a writer by night, spending all time in between hanging out with her husband, son, friends, and family! She loves to hear from her readers, so don’t hesitate to shoot her a message!

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