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BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 18 January 2022 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – HARMONY ON THE HORIZON by KATHLEEN DENLY

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – HARMONY ON THE HORIZON by KATHLEEN DENLY

 

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THE BLURB

Her calling to change the world may be his downfall.

On the heels of the Great Rebellion, Margaret Foster, an abolitionist northerner, takes a teaching position in 1865 San Diego—a town dominated by Southern sympathizers. At thirty-seven years of age, Margaret has accepted spinsterhood and embraced her role as teacher. So, when Everett Thompson, the handsomest member of the School Board, reveals his interest in her, it’s a dream come true. Until her passionate ideals drive a wedge between them.

After two decades of hard work, Everett Thompson is on the verge of having everything he’s dreamed of. Even the beautiful new teacher has agreed to his courtship. Then two investments go south and a blackmailer threatens everything Everett has and dreams of.

As Everett scrambles to shore up the crumbling pieces of his life, Margaret unwittingly sets off a scandal that divides the small community and threatens her position as teacher. With the blackmailer still whispering threats, Everett must decide if he’s willing to risk everything for the woman still keeping him at arm’s length.

THE AUTHOR

A1NE2qoq2mL._SY600_Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting.

Kathleen is the award-winning author of Chaparral Hearts, a three-book series of stand-alone novels set in nineteenth century Southern California (plus a prequel novella available exclusively to her newsletter subscribers).

Kathleen would love it if you visited her website at KathleenDenly.com.

You can also connect with her on social media:

Instagram & Twitter @KathleenDenly

Facebook Author Page: KathleenDenly.author

FB Group: Armchair Adventure Krew

To see photos that inspired her novels, follow her on Pinterest.

MY REVIEW

When a Boston teacher lands a job in fledgling Southern sympathizer San Diego, sparks fly.

Ms. Denly layers conflict upon conflict, twist knotted against twist. The historical detail and descriptive details bring the story to life and give depth and When a Boston teacher lands a job in fledgling Southern sympathizer San Diego, sparks fly. Ms. Denly layers conflict upon conflict, twist knotted against twist. The historical detail and descriptive details bring the story to life and give depth and

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4FOUR FEATHERS

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Harmony on the Horizon, Kathleen Denly, Chaparral Hearts, Waltz in the Wilderness, Sing in the Sunlight

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 21 December 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – (MINI) BOOK REVIEW – THE RECKONING AT GOSSAMER POND by JAIME JO WRIGHT

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – (MINI) BOOK REVIEW – THE RECKONING AT GOSSAMER POND by JAIME JO WRIGHT

                                                                             

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THE BLURB

For over a century, the town of Gossamer Grove has thrived on its charm and midwestern values, but Annalise Forsythe knows painful secrets, including her own, hover just beneath the pleasant façade. When a man is found dead in his run-down trailer home, Annalise inherits the trailer, along with the pictures, vintage obituaries, and old revival posters covering its walls. As she sorts through the collection, she’s wholly unprepared for the ramifications of the dark and deadly secrets she’ll uncover.
A century earlier, Gossamer Grove has been stirred into chaos by the arrival of controversial and charismatic twin revivalists. The chaos takes a murderous turn when Libby Sheffield, working at her father’s newspaper, receives an obituary for a reputable church deacon hours before his death. As she works with the deacon’s son to unravel the mystery behind the crime, it becomes undeniably clear that a reckoning has come to town–but it isn’t until another obituary arrives that they realize the true depths of the danger they’ve waded into.
Two women, separated by a hundred years, must uncover the secrets within the borders of their own town before it’s too late and they lose their future–or their very souls.

THE AUTHOR

B1gr-g181PS._SX800_Daphne du Maurier and Christy Award-Winning author, Jaime Jo Wright resides in the hills of Wisconsin writing suspenseful, mysteries stained with history’s secrets. Jaime lives in dreamland, exists in reality, and invites you to join her adventures at jaimewrightbooks.com

MY REVIEW

When you read a story by Jaime Jo Wright you know it’s going to be a good one. Gripping, edge of your seat, page-turning mystery and suspense. Doubly so with her dual timeline, and yet the past is so linked with the present.

Secrets just don’t stay hidden. Somebody, somewhere always knows. And someday, somehow, it always comes out. Even if it’s decades later.

Ms. Wright has splattered unexpected twists on every page, mysteries that seem to pull Annalise further from the answers she seeks. And closer to spilling her own secret. The more she discovers, the more questions she has.

A hundred years earlier, Libby Sheffield has mysteries of her own, practically handed to her. She, too, is caught up finding more questions than answers in her search for the truth.

What happened at the newspaper a hundred years ago? And what does it have to do with events in present day Gossamer Grove?

Ms. Wright pens a story with more intrigue, more chills, more questions, and keeps her reader’s attention to the very end.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4FOUR FEATHERS

I purchased this book and offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my own honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, (Mini) Book Review, The Reckoning at Gossamer Pond, Jaime Jo Wright

BLOGWORDS – Monday 20 December 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-MONDAY – BOOK REVIEW – LOST IN DARKNESS by MICHELLE GRIEP

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-MONDAY – BOOK REVIEW – LOST IN DARKNESS by MICHELLE GRIEP

 

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THE BLURB

Even if there be monsters, there is none so fierce as that which resides in man’s own heart. 

Travel writer Amelia Balfour’s dream of touring Egypt is halted when she receives news of a revolutionary new surgery for her grotesquely disfigured brother. This could change everything, and it does. . .in the worst possible way.
Surgeon Graham Lambert has suspicions about the doctor he’s gone into practice with, but he can’t stop him from operating on Amelia’s brother. Will he be too late to prevent the man’s death? Or to reveal his true feelings for Amelia before she sails to Cairo?

THE AUTHOR

71A5fij338L._SY600_I hear voices. Loud. Incessant. And very real. Which basically gives me two options: choke back massive amounts of Prozac or write fiction. I’ve been writing since I discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. I seek to glorify God in all that I write–except for that graffiti phase I went through as teenager.

MY REVIEW

Dead set to never return to her past, Amelia receives news that leaves her no choice. In an age when women didn’t enjoy the luxury of a career, Amelia Balfour has made her mark, and is loathe to leave it behind. Just a small detour, though, only a slight delay…

After years asea, Graham Lambert has landed what he believes to be the career position he believes will set the course for his future as a surgeon. But when his mentor offers a groundbreaking—and questionable—procedure for the son of a wealthy benefactor, Graham has more questions than answers.

As she does so eloquently, Ms. Griep criss-crosses Amelia and Graham’s paths—and their heartstrings. With each page, she raises the stakes and the suspense, and the affection Amelia and Graham are beginning to feel. With every page, Amelia’s impatience to return to her life begins to wane. With every page, Graham feels he must act [SPOILER.]

Pulling from threads of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, Ms. Griep twists a tale of human nature and of torture. Of a life spent in hiding and in misery. Of medical experiments and unthinkable consequences. But most of all, Ms. Griep writes of faith and of love.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4 FOUR FEATHERS

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Monday, #TRD, Book Review, Lost in Darkness, Michelle Griep

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 16 November 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – SPEAK NOW by CHAUTONA HAVIG

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – SPEAK NOW by CHAUTONA HAVIG

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ABOUT THE BOOK

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Book: Speak Now

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Fiction / Christian / Romance

Release date: May 30, 2013

THE BLURB

Some say you only love once. They’re wrong.

Ask Jonathan Lyman. Still grieving for his wife, he walks into that wedding with no idea his entire life is about to change. It was just supposed to be a simple—oh, who am I kidding? It was supposed to be a typical, lavish, family wedding.

But there’s nothing typical about falling in love with a woman walking down the aisle. So to speak.

Cara Laas is falling hard and fast for a man whose heart doesn’t want to let go of the past and is rushing to meet her in the present. At the same time. That she’s half in love with his children doesn’t help, either.

Their attraction may be their undoing, but is either ready for “till death do us part?”

She’s a master at making others comfortable. He’s never comfortable talking, but if he wants her heart, he’s going to have to speak—now sooner than later, if you don’t mind.

Click here to get your copy!

THE AUTHOR

media-headshot-sm-240x300-240x300Author of the bestselling 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

All New Cover, All New Edits, Same Great Story?

The article condemned the overuse of dialogue. I did a bit of research, and my heart sank. It seemed dialogue was out. Lyrical prose was in. Great. Just what I needed.

I write a decidedly dialogue-driven story. Always have.

Every time I tried to shift character discussions into narrative, my prose took a nose-dive into a tank of boring info-dumping. Blech. Those characters wanted to talk. They didn’t want me to tell readers what they wanted to say. They wanted me to let them tell their story as they lived it.

Characters can be pretty demanding.

Then Jonathan stepped up. He didn’t talk—didn’t want to talk. In fact, he didn’t like it. Refused to do it. And yet… how could he hope to get to know a woman who fascinated him if he didn’t at least ask questions to get her to carry most of the conversation.

Research says that if you gaze into someone’s eyes for four minutes, you’ll develop a strong bond with that person. I suspect that’s what “love at first sight” is. Two people who foolishly keep gazing into a stranger’s eyes long enough to form that bond. Or something.

I also suspect that’s what happened to Jonathan that night.

So here I had a character who did not like to talk. And aside from self-absorbed people, most of us don’t like to carry an entire conversation alone, so the woman he met that night, Cara, wouldn’t enjoy chatting all by herself all night.

Look, I tried to make it less dialogue-driven and not all info-dumpy. I tried to keep it an engaging read without so much discussion. But the dialogue refused to go away. It wanted its place. It needed to be there.

So I caved, certain I was going to be a mediocre writer for the rest of my life.

I hated that book for so long. In fact, I never intended to publish it. Why would I put something out there so very bad? The articles, books, videos—all the things I’d read said I was doing something wrong.

Except one friend. Michele loved the story—begged for new installments. Pleaded with me to finish it. So, I did. For her. I published it, even. Only for her. And you know what? I still hated it.

Despite that book having the best scene I’ve ever written in it.

No joke. There’s a scene in there that I’m always amazed to realize that I wrote. It’s powerful and raw and oh, so poignant. And yes, there are words in it—spoken words by my characters.

A few years passed. I still didn’t like the book. In my mind, it was a failure.

Then someone said something to me one day. “You are so good at dialogue.”

Later, someone else said it again. And later, I heard it again. Here I’d spent all this time and frustration fighting against one of my biggest writing strengths. Because some article made me question the best way to write. When I did searches on writing good dialogue, guess what? I found rebuttal arguments that included references to books I loved. Oops.

To say my eyes opened, and I saw something new in that story might be overkill. If anything, I assumed that meant it was as bad as I thought.

I felt certain that was why I didn’t like that book. It didn’t have “my” dialogue. So I reread it, determined to figure out if I should rewrite the whole thing with more.

Know what I discovered? I like the book.

Okay, Speak Now may never make my top-ten favorites of the books I’ve written. In fact, I guarantee it won’t.

But it won’t make the bottom ten anymore, either. In fact, it’s closer to top than bottom these days. And now it has a new cover, which I’m sure my daughter is pleased about. As the photographer for my original cover, she hated how I blew out the highlights on it. I loved the effect for that book, but with new editing, a few dialogue changes, and of course, that scene I love so much (and one tiny subplot that I never explored well changed for something else), it needed a new cover. And so I have it now. Introducing Speak Now 2.0. I’m so excited to share this book with the world.

MY REVIEW

Sometimes you just know. Sometimes the connection is inexplicable, soul deep; deep calls unto deep.

Ms. Havig boldly took on a topic not often ventured, especially in Christian fiction—the struggle to maintain abstinence before marriage. She allows her characters the natural passion and, yes, burning desire. She also gives them strength to resist and the wisdom to know their limits. I applaud her for her courage and honesty. For giving her reader characters who are true and authentic, and very real.

This reader loves good dialogue in a story; it can be a make it or break it factor. And Ms. Havig writes crisp, sparkling dialogue. Great banter. Intense conversations. Except—Jonathan doesn’t talk. Not much anyway. So… dialogue is doubly interesting in this story.

And Cara. “A master at making others comfortable.” Herself, not so much. Can I ever relate to that! And rooted for her on all the more.

Even with their connection, both Jonathan and Cara resist the obvious attraction. Both deny themselves the possibility of love. This reader grew frustrated with them, while cheering them on. “Kiss the girl,” I sang. “Kiss the girl.” And yet applauding their dedication to their convictions.

Beautiful love story, wonderful characters, delightful telling.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4FOUR FEATHERS

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

TOUR GIVEAWAY

Speak Now Promo

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

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/12f85/speak-now-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG STOPS

Inklings and notions, November 5

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 6

Simple Harvest Reads, November 6 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

deb’s Book Review, November 7

Elly Gilbert, November 7

Texas Book-aholic, November 8

Cultivating Us, November 8

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, November 9

Lots of Helpers, November 10

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, November 10

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, November 11

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, November 12

Blogging With Carol, November 12

She Lives To Read, November 13

Kayem Reads, November 14

For Him and My Family, November 14

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, November 15

Pause for Tales, November 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 16

Spoken from the Heart, November 16

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, November 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, November 18

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Speak Now, Chautona Havig, Celebrate Lit Publicity, #GIVEAWAY

BLOGWORDS – Wednesday 27 October 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-WEDNESDAY – BOOK REVIEW – TROUBLE BREWING by HEATHER DAY GILBERT

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-WEDNESDAY – BOOK REVIEW – TROUBLE BREWING by HEATHER DAY GILBERT

 

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THE BLURB

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

Convinced that the elderly lady in her care didn’t die of natural causes, Macy’s friend Della determines to look into the broken relationships surrounding the woman. She books a Halloween-themed getaway at a local inn and talks Macy into coming along with her to spy on her prime suspect.
As they join a ghost tour of the candlelit town, Macy and Della feel their guide is a little too fanatical as he shares his spooky tales. He tells the story of the Greenbrier ghost, a newlywed who supposedly came back from the grave to tell her family that her husband murdered her.
When a disturbing apparition makes its presence known, guests at the inn become apprehensive…and for good reason, because soon after, a young bride turns up dead. Although everything points to a copycat killer replicating the historical Greenbrier murder, Macy has her doubts. She’s discovered that the inn harbors secrets of its own, and when she pokes into one darkened corner too many, she might not stand a ghost of a chance.

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



The Barks & Beans Cafe cozy mystery series in order:
Book 1: No Filter
Book 2: Iced Over
Book 3: Fair Trade
Book 4: Spilled Milk
Book 5: Trouble Brewing
Book 6: Cold Drip (coming in May 2022)

THE AUTHOR

7232683Award-winning novelist Heather Day Gilbert enjoys writing mysteries and Viking historicals. She brings authentic family relationships to the page, and she particularly delights in heroines who take a stand to protect those they love. Avid readers say Heather’s realistic characters–no matter what century–feel like best friends. When she’s not plotting stories, this native West Virginia gal can often be found hanging out with her husband and four children, playing video games, or reading Agatha Christie novels.

Find all her books and her newsletter signup at heatherdaygilbert.com

 

MY REVIEW

Cozy and mystery are two words that just don’t seem to fit together. And yet, as a genre, it totally works. And Heather Day Gilbert does it well. (Watch out, Agatha Christie!)

Macy Hatfield is such a loveable character. I know I can always count on an adventure when I visit Barks and Beans Café. Macy has such an inquisitive mind and observant eye. She’d make a great detective—oh wait! She is. Sorta, kinda. A detective aid, maybe? She sure plays a major role in solving murders in their vicinity.

And Bo. Totally swoon worthy. Strong and silent swoon worthy. Macy’s rock and anchor.

Ms. Gilbert lays out her clues—and more than one red herring—in her stories, leading Macy to the murderer, albeit down a somewhat crooked and indirect path.

And the twists the author creates! Murder is twisted enough to begin with and Ms. Gilbert always seems to put a new spin on it.

Gotta give a shout out to Coal! Can’t leave a review in this series without it! He may be huge but he so loveable and adorable.

#lovemesomeCoal

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide5ALL | THE | FEATHERS!

 

 

This book was given to me as a gift. The opinions expressed in my review are my own honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

 

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Wednesday, #TRD, Book Review, Trouble Brewing, Heather Day Gilbert, Barks and Beans Cozy Mystery

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 26 October 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – UNCHARTED COURAGE by KEELY BROOKE KEITH

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – UNCHARTED COURAGE by KEELY BROOKE KEITH

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THE BLURB

With the survival of the Land at stake and her heart on the line, Bailey must find the courage to love.

When Bailey accepts John Colburn’s offer for her to visit Good Springs, she leaves the Inn at Falls Creek expecting to spend the autumn relaxing in her favorite seaside village. Upon her arrival, Connor asks her to cover a shift of guard duty on the equinox, and her quiet vacation takes a shocking turn.
Revel Roberts works hard to keep his life commitment-free, making it easy to leave community decisions to men like Connor and John. But when the Land is threatened, Revel sees his chance to prove he is a man worthy of Bailey’s love. Amid the chaos in Good Springs, his unrequited feelings for her preoccupy him. One wrong choice could ruin everything.
As Bailey’s new life in the Land unravels and threats from the outside world loom, a yearning she can’t define surges within her. It distracts her from defending the hidden world she loves, and a tragedy reinforces her need for independence.
With the survival of the Land at stake and their hearts on the line, Bailey and Revel will need more courage than fighting ever required. They will need to find the courage to love.

Uncharted Courage weaves past and future in a faith-filled story of life in a hidden land. You’ll love this Christian historical romance with a futuristic twist, full of mystery and suspense. Perfect for fans of dual timeline stories and time travel romance! If you enjoy the rural setting and wholesomeness of frontier romance and Amish fiction, you’ll adore Uncharted Courage.

THE AUTHOR

61r9TO0ItqL._SY600_Keely Brooke Keith writes inspirational frontier-style fiction with a futuristic twist, including The Land Uncharted (Shelf Unbound Notable Romance 2015) and Aboard Providence (2017 INSPY Awards Longlist).

Born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Keely was a tree-climbing, baseball-loving 80s kid. She grew up in a family who moved often, which fueled her dreams of faraway lands. When she isn’t writing, Keely enjoys teaching home school lessons and playing bass guitar. Keely, her husband, and their daughter live on a hilltop south of Nashville, Tennessee.

MY REVIEW

I always enjoy a visit to the Land Uncharted, and Uncharted Courage is no exception. (I could use some of that gray leaf, too!)

Ms. Keith takes her reader on a journey that feels like a trip back in time, but with the all the tension of the 21st century. Outside the Land, a world war rages, But within the mysterious atmospheric shield, the Land is as peaceful as ever. Not without its difficulties or strife, of course, as any society will bear. Or matters of the heart.

Coming from the outside world, Bailey never felt inclined to romance, and has kept her heart tightly secured against it.

Revel Roberts, too, has secured his heart against romance. Like all else in his life, nothing is permanent, nor does it ever work out to his best interest. Better to stick to his solitary life; it’s what’s familiar and comfortable.

But when hearts connect, it’s not so easy to quell that pull. That longing.

There is more at stake, though, than runaway hearts. Evidence that another outsider—an enemy, potentially hostile—has come into the land, and fear runs high.

Ms. Keith takes her characters—and her readers—on a roller-coaster journey. Mystery and suspense on every page hold the reader’s full attention through to the end. She gives her characters real and raw emotions, and having read [almost] all the books in the series, I have come to feel like I have friends in the Land.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide5ALL | THE | FEATHERS!

This book was given to me as a gift. The opinions expressed in my review are my own honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Uncharted Courage, Keely Brooke Keith, Uncharted Series

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 5 October 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – UNDERCURRENT OF SECRETS by RACHEL SCOTT McDANIEL

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – UNDERCURRENT OF SECRETS by RACHEL SCOTT McDANIEL

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ABOUT THE BOOK

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Book:  Undercurrent of Secrets

Author: Rachel Scott McDaniel

Genre: Christian Romance

Release date: September 2021

THE BLURB

Two women, a century apart, are bound by a haunting secret aboard a legendary steamboat.

Walk through Doors to the Past via a new series of historical stories of romance and adventure.

As wedding coordinator for the 100-year-old steamboat The Belle of Louisville, Devyn Asbury takes pride in seeing others’ dreams come true, even though her engagement had sunk like a diamond ring to the bottom of the Ohio River. When the Belle becomes a finalist in the Timeless Wedding Venue contest, Devyn endeavors to secure the prestigious title with hopes to reclaim some of her professional dreams. What she hadn’t planned on was Chase Jones showing up with a mysterious photo from the 1920s.

A century earlier, Hattie Louis is as untamable as the rivers that raised her. As the adopted daughter of a steamboat captain, her duties range from the entertainment to cook. When strange incidents occur aboard the boat, Hattie’s determined to discover the truth. Even if that means getting under First Mate Jack Marshall’s handsome skin.

Click here to get your copy!

THE AUTHOR

Rachel-McDaniel-766x1024Rachel Scott McDaniel is an award-winning author of historical romance. Winner of the ACFW Genesis Award and the RWA Touched By Love award, Rachel infuses faith and heart into each story. Rachel can be found online at http://www.RachelScottMcDaniel.com and on all social media platforms. Her work is represented by Julie Gwinn of the Seymour Agency. Rachel resides in Ohio with her husband and two children.

MORE FROM RACHEL

In 1914, America hadn’t joined WWI yet. Airplanes, or flying machines as they were called, were still a phenomenon. Radios weren’t a thing. Hawaii and Alaska weren’t part of the United States. The world as a whole looked different than the one we walk today. But one thing remains true as it had 100 years ago—The Belle of Louisville graced the waters. In fact, the century-old steamboat is like a floating time capsule.

steamboat

First named the Idlewild, this boat was built in Pittsburgh, PA and was launched in October 1914. It began its days as a packet boat, hauling freight and ferrying passengers. During the ‘Roaring 20s’ there wasn’t much documentation for her travels. But it’s believed the Idlewild spent the decade tramping—a steamboat term for going up and down the river, stopping at various towns and taking passengers for excursions. Which worked perfectly for Undercurrent of Secrets.

The boat was then sold to New Orleans where it continued to ferry passengers. In 1931, The Idlewild spent a season in Louisville running trips to Rose Island and Fontaine Ferry amusement parks. It then spent the next several years coursing the waterways from Canada to New Orleans, living upon the Mississippi and Ohio river systems until WWII. The second world war brought a lot of action to the Idlewild which was then outfitted with special equipment to push oil barges along the river. She also served as a floating USO nightclub for troops stationed at military bases along the Mississippi River.

In 1947, she was sold and renamed the Avalon. For the next two decades the legendary lady spent her days along the rivers, hosting excursions, bringing adventure to the hearts of many Americans. But all those years and miles eventually caught up to her and she fell in disrepair. In 1962, she was put up for auction in Cincinnati where she was purchased by Jefferson County Judge Executive Marlow Cook for $34,000. She then received her third name, The Belle of Louisville.

new steamboat

The restoration of the boat was supervised by marine architect Alan L. Bates (later Captain Bates). Capt. Bates’ books, Str. Belle of Louisville, and Moonlight at 8:30, were a huge help to me while researching the history of the boat and the crews who worked on her. The reno crew worked tirelessly rebuilding the Belle and on April 30th, she tested the waters again by racing against the Delta Queen in the first Great Steamboat Race. The Belle has been wharfed in Louisville ever since. This century-old steamboat has stood the test of time, surviving decades, sinkings, storms, weathering all the trials with grit and grace. If you ever find yourself in Louisville, you could book a cruise on the Belle and experience history.

MY REVIEW

I do love a story with dual timeline. And a good twist, too! And this story is both! With two strong female characters, both of them go-getters, the verbal sparring—and the sparks that flew—with their male counterparts was both entertaining and charming. Well, annoying at times, too.

Hattie didn’t let her status in life keep her from excelling at life; she took a task and turned it into a skill. And the extreme double-twist [SPOILER] at the end—oh my!

Devyn, on the other hand, faced the task before her as a failure. And the swoony Chase Jones as a hindrance.

Ms. McDaniel takes both her female leads, indeed all her characters, through some paces and brings them to new [SPOILER.]

Ms. McDaniel’s writing is smooth sailing (pun intended) and keeps the reader’s attention. She draws the reader eagerly to the unexpected and satisfying end.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4FOUR FEATHERS

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

TOUR GIVEAWAY

Undercurrent of Secrets Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a 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/11b61/undercurrent-of-secrets-celebration-tour-giveaway

BLOG STOPS

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 25

Rachael’s Inkwell, September 25

Texas Book-aholic, September 26

Christian Bookaholic, September 26

Where Faith and Books Meet, September 27

Inklings and notions, September 27

Genesis 5020, September 27

For Him and My Family, September 28

Life of Literature, September 28

deb’s Book Review, September 29

Jeanette’s Thoughts, September 29

Remembrancy, September 30

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 30

She Lives to Read, October 1

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 1

Older & Smarter?, October 1

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 2

Mary Hake, October 2

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 3

Simple Harvest Reads, October 3 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Bizwings Blog, October 3

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 4

For the Love of Literature, October 4

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 5

Through the fire blogs, October 5

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 6

Pause for Tales, October 6

Artistic Nobody, October 7 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Just Your Average reviews, October 7

Splashes of Joy, October 8

Labor Not in Vain, October 8

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Undercurrent of Secrets, Rachel Scott McDaniel, Celebrate Lit Publicity

BLOGWORDS – Monday 4 October 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-MONDAY – BOOK REVIEW – BLESSED by LISA T. BERGREN

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-MONDAY – BOOK REVIEW – BLESSED by LISA T. BERGREN

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Blessed

THE BLURB

Their coming was foretold for centuries…and their gathering threatens to change everything.
A portion of an ancient, beautifully illuminated letter—a letter believed to have been written by Saint Paul—has surfaced. The letter speaks of men and women with profound spiritual gifts and the illuminations bear a striking resemblance to those drawing together in medieval Italy.
Their gathering will strike fear in the heart of a Church dedicated to maintaining their considerable power. But there is another enemy on the hunt for them and he is darker still…

THE AUTHOR

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Lisa T. Bergren is Tim’s wife, Olivia, Emma and Jack’s mom, and an explorer of people, places and stories in many genres. She’s written over 60 books and sold over 3 million of them, with the help of some good publishing people and readers like you. You can find more about her at http://www.LisaTawnBergren.com.

MY REVIEW

100421 - blessed - battle in heavenly places

This story, indeed the whole trilogy, is as rich and detailed and telling as the tapestries that hung on castle walls.

Once again, Ms. Bergren has grasped the reality and depth of things not seen, the Truth of who we are in Christ, His hands and feet in the earth. His agents in battle against the enemy. His messengers of love and light and life. The spiritual battle that is going on around us and within us all the time.

The layers and twisted threads pull the reader deeper into the journey with Lady Daria and her entourage. The Begotten, the Blessed, the Chosen. The Gifted.

Ms. Bergren sheds light—the Light of Christ—on the wily, subtle ways of the enemy. Just as with Adam and Eve, he slithers in, into our subconscious, and tells his lies like so many eggs waiting to hatch.

Oh! the temptation, oh! the pull as the enemy targets us in our weakness. Lady Daria craved what her enemy offered. She nearly yielded to the evil one. [SPOILER]

This story moves through miracles and loss as the Gifted seek to vanquish and conquer their enemy once and for all. They are cut down, tormented—both in spirit and in the flesh—delayed, betrayed.

The ending is magnificent, and perfect to the journey, this trilogy. Ms. Bergren truly is gifted herself, both in the telling of the story, and in her knowledge of the spiritual world.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide5ALL | THE | FEATHERS!

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

092121 - blessed - book images

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Monday, #TRD, Book Review, Blessed, Lisa T. Bergren, The Gifted Series, Begotten, Betrayed, JustRead Publicity

BLOGWORDS – Monday 6 September 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-FRIDAY – BOOK REVIEW – UNDER PENALTY OF DEATH by KRISTENA MEARS

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-FRIDAY – BOOK REVIEW – UNDER PENALTY OF DEATH by KRISTENA MEARS

 

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THE BLURB

Today, Keturah became a woman. But her joy ends in terror when Abba accepts an offer for her betrothal. Her plan to escape the arranged marriage worked. She’s now free to find her brother and live as she chooses. But the lies and deceit catch up with her. If she confesses, will it lead to her death? Will she ever learn to live the life Yahweh desires from her?

Justus’ devotion to Yeshua results in Abba proclaiming him dead to the family. When Justus rescues a child from slavery, Keturah falls in love with the toddler. But the child’s mother returns, and Justus falls in love. Will Keturah’s jealousy destroy all bonds with her brother? Can they save their relationship?

Onesimus, a runaway slave, has a secret. Befriending Keturah, he finds she has a secret of her own. Will the two friends be destroyed by what they hide, or can they learn to give everything to God?
Will running set them free or sentence them to death?

THE AUTHOR

29872520_2058005314481177_6435587823241456730_oKristena is an award-winning author, speaker, and blogger.
She is a self-proclaimed coffee connoisseur.
She loves history, art, travel, and even research. Out of these, flow her vivid imagination and inspiring stories.
Her heart and life have been given over completely to her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. She believes in living transparently in all things, with no separation between her day-to-day life and her “.church” life.
Kristena writes an engaging blog that focuses on supporting Indie Author and reaching a writer’s full potential. If you’re looking for new ways to freshen up that dusty manuscript and get it into print, be sure to subscribe to her blog at kristenamears.com
When Kristena’s not busy writing or working her full-time job, you’ll probably find her nose in a book or spending time with her husband and best friend, Mark. She takes frequent trips to the zoo with her friends. She also enjoys cooking and dabbling in photography.
Kristena lives in the Cincinnati, OH area. She has been married to her “better half” for 39 years.and has three grown children.

MY REVIEW

Oh! how impetuous the youth! Even in her faith, Keturah thought and acted rashly, sure she was doing as Jehovah would have her do. Problem was, she didn’t stop to ask. And we all know what happens when we don’t stop to ask. For help. For confirmation. For directions.

But Keturah found herself on a journey far more than in search of her brother. [SPOILER] For even in her [obstinate] attitude, Father God was with her, guiding her, teaching her. Wooing her.

I appreciated Ms. Mears historical detail, rich and vivid, pulling the reader into the culture of the first century Jew. There were times, though, that (for as much as I enjoy it) the detailed descriptions took me out of the storyline, if only just bit.

As He does with each one of us, Father God set the path before for Keturah, bringing people and circumstance at the very moment it is needed. I look forward to the next book in this series.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4FOUR FEATHERS

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Monday, #TRD, Book Review, Under Penalty of Death, Kristena Mears, Slavery of the Heart Series

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 31 August 2021 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – A SECOND CHANCE by WALT MUSSELL

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – A SECOND CHANCE by WALT MUSSELL

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THE BLURB

Kira Sakamichi is a career-driven woman, trying to achieve success before her mother’s constant interference sentences her to a relationship. But when a grudging drive to meet her mother’s latest “selection” ends in a lake accident, Kira wakes up lost in the past, the concubine of a 16th century samurai, and mother to his six-year-old son. When actions in battle lead to the samurai’s condemnation, Kira learns that she and her son will share the samurai’s fate. Only by understanding the importance of duty and family in both time periods can they survive.

THE AUTHOR

B1470EafD2S._SY600_Walt Mussell lives in an Atlanta-area suburb with his wife and their two sons. He works for a well-known corporation and writes in his spare time.
Walt primarily writes historicals, with a particular focus on Japan, an interest he gained during the four years he lived there. He refers to his work as “Like Shogun, but the heroine survives.”
Outside of writing, his favorite activity is trying to keep up with his kids. As one is in college and the other is now out of college and looking for a position related to his major, this is proving more difficult each day.
Visit his website at waltmussell.com
Follow him on Twitter at @wmussell and on Instagram at @authorwaltmussell

MY REVIEW

Mr. Mussell’s Japanese historical novels are an automatic must-read! His books, so rich and full, never fail to hold the reader’s attention. And A Second Chance is no exception. The history of the 16th century Samurai era comes alive as Kira lives an alternate life.

As with all historical fiction, the cultural differences can be staggering. I appreciated Kira’s confusion and puzzlement when she first awoke after her accident. Her slow grasp of where she was—and when. Her journey, though, was not just through time, but one of self-discovery [SPOILER.] She emerges confused, but with a shift in values and a new and deeper understanding of family and identity.

I look forward to more stories—travels—with Kira.

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide4FOUR FEATHERS

I received a complimentary copy of this book, but was under no obligation to read the book or to post a review. I offer my review of my own free will. The opinions expressed in my review are my honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

justread

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, A Second Chance, Walt Mussell, JustRead Publicity

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