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BLOGWORDS – Saturday 14 December 2019 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE GATHERING DARK by BRETT ARMSTRONG

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE GATHERING DARK by BRETT ARMSTRONG

 

THE BLURB

 

Jason is an expert at running from his past. But when it catches up, he finds himself hiding in a peculiar inn listening to a tale from centuries past.
The story is Anargen’s, a teen who is pulled from all he loves to follow his oaths of loyalty to the fabled King of the Realms. Together with his mentor, Cinaed, he rides north on a special quest to mediate peace talks between ancient foes—the men of Ecthelowall and the dwarfs of Ordumair. Nothing goes as planned. Many on both sides of the dispute despise Anargen’s Order. Worse, an arcane evil has returned to the North. This “Grey Scourge” seeks to ruin the peace talks and ensure a lost treasure held by the dwarfs is never found by those for whom it is meant.
As Anargen’s story unfolds, Jason begins to wonder whether it is truly just a fable. He soon finds himself drawn into the conflict Anargen faced. A battle which has shaped and can destroy his world.

 

THE AUTHOR

From an early age, Brett Armstrong had a love for literature and history. At age nine, he combined the two for his first time in a short story set in the last days of the Aztec Empire. After that, writing’s role in his life waxed and waned periodically, always a dream on the horizon, till he reached college. At West Virginia University, he entered the Computer Engineering program and spent two years pursuing that degree before an opportunity to take a creative writing class, for fun, came along. It was so enjoyable, he took another and in that course he discovered two things. The first was the plot for a short story called Destitutio Quod Remissio, which the others students really seemed to love. The second, he realized he absolutely loved writing. For him, it was like the proverbial light bulb coming on. In the years since, describing that epiphany has been difficult for him, but he found the words of 1924 Olympian Eric Liddell are the most eloquent expression for it: “God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure.” God gave Brett a passion for writing, and so feels His pleasure when writing.
After a few years passed, Brett got his Computer Engineering degree, but also completed a minor in each of his real passions: history and creative writing. In 2013, he began graduate school to earn an MA in Creative Writing. During that time he completed the novelization of Destitutio Quod Remissio and entered the 2013-2014 CrossBooks Writing Contest, which won the contest’s grand prize. As of March 2015, Brett completed his MA and is presently employed in the West Virginia Division of Infectious Disease Epidemiology as a programmer analyst.
Brett lives in Saint Albans, West Virginia, with his beautiful wife, Shelly. In the summer the pair gardens together, and each day Brett continues writing his next novel.

 

MY REVIEW

I love when Biblical Truths are wrapped in a well-told story! Even more so when it’s written for teens and adolescents.

The characters were well represented, authentic in their struggles with their journey and in their squabbles with each other. The 14th century setting was rugged and crude. At first the narrative at the beginning threw me, but as the story developed and the narrator appeared in “interludes,” it made more sense. The innkeeper was a mysterious character, and the twist at the end was a surprise!

It did seem that this entire story was a journey that never arrived at a destination. But sometimes the journey IS the destination. What the boys learned as they traveled, the profound allegory to Biblical Truth, makes this story a great read for its audience.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

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-Saturday, #TRD, Book Review, The Gathering Dark, Brett Armstrong, Quest of Fire Book 1

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 10 December 2019 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE CAMERA NEVER LIES by DAVID RAWLINGS

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE CAMERA NEVER LIES by DAVID RAWLINGS

 

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Book:  The Camera Never Lies

Author: David Rawlings

Genre: General fiction/allegory/magical realism

Release Date: December 3, 2019

 

 

THE BLURB

David Rawlings, author of The Baggage Handler, returns with another probing story: what would you do if your secrets were revealed to those around you?

Daniel Whiteley is a successful couples counselor who regularly puts families back together, helping them face up to the things in life they hide. But his own marriage is falling apart.

His wife, Kelly, knows Daniel is hiding something from her, but she doesn’t dare probe for fear her own secrets will be revealed.

When his grandfather dies, Daniel inherits an old SLR camera from a time when cameras pointed away from the person taking the photograph. On the camera is an inscription: “Use this camera wisely and remember, regardless of the picture you think you took, the camera never lies.”
When Daniel first uses his new camera he finds someone has already filled the roll of film. Annoyed, he processes the film and finds photos of a secret that he’s been hiding from his wife and daughter.
He has no idea who took them.

Now every time he uses the camera, the photographs reveal another secret about himself the he is desperate to keep-as well as those of his wife, which he is desperate to uncover.

 

Click here to get your copy.

 

THE AUTHOR

David Rawlings is an Australian author, and a sports-mad father of three who loves humor and a clever turn of phrase. Over a 25-year career he has put words on the page to put food on the table, developing from sports journalism and copywriting to corporate communication. Now in fiction, he entices readers to look deeper into life with stories that combine the everyday with a sense of the speculative, addressing the fundamental questions we all face.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXCERPT

Read an excerpt of The Camera Never Lies here.

 

MY REVIEW

“You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.”  John 8:32

But the truth can’t set you free if you keep it hidden.

How easily white lies, fudged truths, become tangled webs of deceit and confusion. Daniel spins a sticky web that becomes not a safe cocoon but a suffocating mask. He thought he could skirt the consequences of keeping his secrets hidden but the more he scrambles to hide the truth the tighter the web constricts. I wanted to throttle Daniel every time he repeated his [SPOILER] mantra.

Kelly, too, and for very different reasons, faces a battle of integrity. The cost of her compromise is steep and heart wrenching.

Mr. Rawlings’ stories are filled with such passion, the characters so alive, the situations so raw. In his telling, he probes not only the characters on the pages but the reader turning the pages.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

ALL | 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.

 

BLOG STOPS

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, December 5

amandainpa, December 5

Older & Smarter?, December 6

Through the Fire Blogs, December 6

Blogging With Carol, December 6

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, December 7

For Him and My Family, December 7

Christian Bookaholic, December 8

Emily Yager, December 8

Splashes of Joy, December 8

As He Leads is Joy, December 9

Mamma Loves Books, December 9

Vicky Sluiter, December 10

mypreciousbitsandmusings, December 10

Robin’s Nest, December 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 11

Bigreadersite, December 11

Genesis 5020, December 12

Remembrancy, December 12

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, December 12

Pause for Tales, December 13

A Reader’s Brain, December 13

For the Love of Literature, December 14

Seasons of Opportunities, December 14

Inklings and notions, December 14

Artistic Nobody, December 15

To Everything There Is A Season, December 15

Texas Book-aholic, December 15

Just the Write Escape, December 16

janicesbookreviews, December 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 16

Hallie Reads, December 17

My Devotional Thoughts, December 17

Quiet Quilter, December 18

Literary Reflections Book Blog, December 18

Godly Book Reviews, December 18

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, The Camera Never Lies, David Rawlings

BLOGWORDS – Saturday 7 December 2019 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW – ALL IN GOOD TIME by CAROLYN ASTFALK

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW – ALL IN GOOD TIME by CAROLYN ASTFALK

 

THE BLURB

With three rambunctious, young children, Melanie Lombardi can’t see beyond the day-to-day struggle to maintain her home and her sanity since her husband’s sudden death. A second chance at romance isn’t on her radar.

Brian Perella is done with dating, resigned to being the fun uncle and never the dad. Until he meets Melanie and her brood of lively kids on the sidelines of a Little League game.

But when Brian uncovers a co-worker’s secret, it re-ignites a temptation that Melanie can’t know about. It’s his secret to keep until an unexpected diagnosis brings everything to the surface, jeopardizing his future with Melanie and her children, who, when threatened by an unknown stalker, may need him now more than ever.

 

THE AUTHOR

Carolyn Astfalk lives in Hershey, Pennsylvania where the scent on the morning breeze carries either chocolate or manure depending on wind direction and atmospheric conditions.
A Pittsburgh native, Carolyn carries her Yinzer card with pride, having interned at Pittsburgh’s iconic TV and radio stations KDKA and WDVE. She is a graduate of Duquesne University, where she majored in Latin and Broadcast Journalism.
A cradle Catholic, Carolyn was raised mainly at church basement rummage sales and other parish-sponsored events. She worked her way up to “pup girl” at weekly Bingo and even served as a parish organist for several years. Having reached the apex of parish ministry, she moved to the state capital to advance her churchy career.
Carolyn served as communications director and registered lobbyist for the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference for a decade, advocating for religious liberty; prolife, pro-family issues, Catholic education, and healthcare, among others.
Since then, she has been a stay-at-home mom to her four children. Most days she can be found wiping up spills, folding laundry, and tapping furiously on her laptop.
Carolyn is a member of the Catholic Writers Guild, Pennwriters, the Pennsylvania Public Relations Society, and 10 Minute Novelists. She blogs at My Scribbler’s Heart.
Blog, extras, social media and more at http://www.carolynastfalk.com

 

MY REVIEW

This story grabbed my attention on the first page—then seemed to stall for much of the first half of the book. Ms. Astfalk dropped several telling and well-placed hints, though, of intrigue to come or I might have relegated the story to slow motion and lackluster.

But, OH! then it took off, and my how it did! Like a rocket!

Brian Perella had sworn off dating and then basically dared God to bring him a wife. The last thing Melanie Lombardi was looking for was a new husband. But once they realized their shared interest and began to spend time together, the attraction grew.

But Ms. Astfalk reignites past secrets—both Brian and Melanie—and puts Brian through the wringer with a harsh diagnosis. Their reactions were ugly and so real it was hard to read; I wanted to throttle both of them! The heart sometimes is our own worst enemy. I applaud Ms. Astfalk braving the topic of Brian’s temptation, something I’ve not seen in fiction before.

The twist at the end was completely unexpected and utterly harrowing! Overall a great read with likeable characters and believable circumstances.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

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-Saturday, #TRD, Book Review, All in Good Time, Carolyn Astfalk

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – ECHOES AMONG THE STONES by JAIME JO WRIGHT

 

THE BLURB

After Aggie Dunkirk’s career is unceremoniously ended by her own mistakes, she finds herself traveling to Wisconsin, where her grandmother, Mumsie, lives alone in her vintage, though very outdated, home. Aggie didn’t plan for how eccentric Mumsie has become, obsessing over an old, unsolved crime scene–even going so far as to re-create it in a dollhouse.

Mystery seems to follow Aggie when she finds work as a secretary helping to restore the flooded historical part of the town’s cemetery. Forced to work with a puzzling yet attractive archaeologist, she exhumes the past’s secrets and unwittingly uncovers a crime that some will go to any length to keep hidden–even if that means silencing Aggie.

In 1946, Imogene Grayson works in a beauty salon but has her sights set on Hollywood. But coming home to discover her younger sister’s body in the attic changes everything. Unfamiliar with the burgeoning world of forensic science and, as a woman, not particularly welcomed into the investigation, Imogene is nonetheless determined to stay involved. As her sister’s case grows cold, Imogene vows to find justice . . . no matter the cost.

 

THE AUTHOR

 

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

HOLY SMOKIN’ JOE! Not only is this my favorite genre—historical time-slip—but Ms. Wright creates a miniature doll house for Hazel—a particular passion of mine. And she knows how to spin a gripping story. Add to that the skill to weave two seeming disparate stories into one seamless knitted fabric and this story sizzles!

Characters who felt like friends, scenes that not only invited me in but made me feel like I was in the midst of the action, a compelling plot with double and triple twists that kept me turning page after page.

I’ve never been so physically alone as Aggie but I’ve sure felt it, and I longed for her and Mumsie to find their common ground. I can’t imagine the horror Imogene faced but I admired her strength and dedication to find answers.

Ms. Wright casts her net of suspicion wide, dropping clues of confusion in the twisty trail to the end. Ms. Wright crafts a story, filled with tragedy and suspense and early forensic techniques, that is a treat for her readers.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

ALL | 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.

 

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, Echoes Among the Stones, Jaime Jo Wright

BLOGWORDS – Monday 2 December 2019 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-MONDAY – BOOK REVIEW – HIS HEART FOR CHRISTMAS by DANA PRATOLA

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-MONDAY – BOOK REVIEW – HIS HEART FOR CHRISTMAS by DANA PRATOLA

                                                                             

THE BLURB

NEVER FALL FOR YOUR BEST FRIEND.

It just isn’t done! With good reason – It’s the fastest way to ruin a friendship forever. Decorating her tree alone on Christmas Eve, Stephanie is agonizing over a decision she must make SOON – Flee to the opposite end of the country and start over without Ryan, or stay here and be tormented by her impossible love for him. If only she could know what the future holds and if risking it all would be worth it. Thanks to the extremely precious, extremely unusual “ornament” Nona handed down to her, maybe she can! (*a SHORT story)

 

THE AUTHOR

 

I’m passionate about Romance. I write about real people with real struggles, temptations, and desires. My characters often have difficult choices to make – and don’t always make the right ones. My stories are not what you expect, and everything you want.
God has blessed me with a wonderful husband and three dynamic children, all of whom are destined to make wide, colorful splashes in this world. We share our New Jersey home with three dogs. I have no hobbies to speak of unless you include writing. I don’t.
Connect With Me at:

http://www.DanaPratolaRomance.com to join my mailing list and receive news of new releases, giveaways, etc.

 

 

 

 

MY REVIEW

Sometimes the best things come in small—or short—packages. And that’s what this story is, short and profound.

Alone on Christmas Eve, Stephanie is pondering a life changing decision. And trying to convince herself she’s not in love.

We humans are so fickle, denying ourselves the things we want most for myriad reasons—the saddest of which is believing God doesn’t want us to have the desire of our heart. Ms. Pratola touches on the mysteries of God, speaking to Stephanie in the depths of her heart, directing her in her decision.

This story is a fun and quick read, vivid descriptions, jazzy dialogue that rings true to life.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

ALL | THE | FEATHERS!

 

 

This book was given to me as a gift. I offer my review of my own free will, and the opinions expressed in my review are my own honest thoughts and reaction to this book.

 

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Monday, #TRD, Book Review, His Heart for Christmas, Dana Pratola

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 26 November 2019 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – LOVE IN PICTURES by ALEXIS GORING

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – LOVE IN PICTURES by ALEXIS GORING

 

 

THE BLURB

Wedding photographer Michelle Hadley has a passion for diversity and believes that love comes in all colors. So, she’s working hard to convince editors to feature her clients’ images on the covers of the mainstream bridal and wedding magazines. Despite having a career that focuses on celebrating forever love, Michelle has never actually been in a romantic relationship, and she’s not looking for love, until she meets the one man she cannot forget. Since his fiancée broke his heart, Logan Emerson’s focus has been on his career. He’s won awards for his work as a print journalist and dreams of greater success on television as a broadcast journalist. But his personal struggle presents many challenges that might prevent his dreams from coming true. Michelle doesn’t date often, and since his heartbreak, Logan has shied away from the dating scene. But something about Michelle awakens Logan’s desire to love again.

 

THE AUTHOR

 

Alexis A. Goring is a passionate writer with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She loves the art of storytelling and hopes that her stories will connect readers with the enduring, forever love of Jesus Christ.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MY REVIEW

As a creative person, if not a photographer, I appreciate Michelle’s eye for beauty and her exacting selection process—the mark of a true professional.

Logan hides his heart and guards his secret with steel determination.

Ms. Goring has brought a mélange of elements together in a charming story—attraction that won’t let go, family tension and interference, a past that resurfaces, a promising future that beckons.

I found it hard to keep up with the time frame; several times I was lost or confused by sudden / unannounced time or location changes. The dialogue was also lacking for me; it felt artificial and contrived.

But the way Ms. Goring handled [SPOILER] issue was beautifully and skillfully done. Her resolution was gripping but simple in its application. Well done!

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

THREE 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, Book Review, Love in Pictures, Alexis Goring, Singing Librarian Book Tours

BLOGWORDS – Saturday 23 November 2019 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW – A MATCH FOR EMMA by PEPPER BASHAM

TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW – A MATCH FOR EMMA by PEPPER BASHAM

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour & Giveaway for A Match for Emma by Pepper Basham, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: A Match for Emma
Author: Pepper Basham
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: November 21, 2019

 

THE BLURB

Emma Mitchell may enjoy sprinkling romance into the lives of others, but her own plans involve a single first-class ticket to culinary school in Europe.

When her best friend, Jon Noble, suddenly moves back to Ransom, Emma’s fairly certain her life can’t get any better…until her matchmaking schemes nosedive, her culinary future falls flat, and a life-long friendship begins to teeter on the brink of something unexpected.

With a little inspiration from Jane Austen’s classic and a touch of Blue Ridge charm, will Jon and Emma discover that what they need the most may be the last thing they’re trying to find?

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | AmazonBook Depository

 

THE AUTHOR

Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance peppered with grace and humor with southern Appalachian flair. Both her historical and contemporary novels have garnered recognition in the Grace Awards, Inspys, and ACFW Carol Awards. Her historical romance, The Thorn Healer, was a finalist in the 2018 RT Awards. Her most recent historical romance, My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge, showcases her Appalachian heritage and family history, as well as her love for humor and family.

She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC where she is the mom of five great kids, a speech-language pathologist to about fifty more, and a lover of chocolate, jazz, hats, and Jesus. Her upcoming release, A Match for Emma, is the third book in her popular Mitchell’s Crossroads series.

Pepper loves getting to know readers and other authors through social media. You may also learn more about her on her website!

CONNECT WITH PEPPER: Website | FacebookTwitterInstagram

 

MY REVIEW

Pepper Basham never fails to disappoint! The #QueenofSwoony delivers kissable characters and tantalizing kisses. #allthekisses Her love for the Blue Ridge Mountains shines all throughout the story with lovely and vibrant descriptions, inviting the reader to visit via the pages of the story.

Of course it’s human nature but don’t you just want to clobber people, fictional or otherwise, when they can’t see what’s good for them right in front of them plain as the nose on their face?

Such was the case with both Emma and Jon.

Emma’s efforts were all well intended, but sometimes the best laid plans fall far short. Mice and men and all that! It crushed me that Emma felt herself a failure—a sentiment this reader once knew far too well. Ms. Basham takes Emma on a rigorous heart journey to discover her own worth.

Jon, too, comes face to face with a grief he thought was buried.

Ms. Basham has a magical way with words, casting a story-spell that brings the story to life and invites the reader right into the midst of the action. Personally, I could go for one or ten of those swoony kisses!

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

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.

TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a Paris cube decorative tote, paperback copy of Jane Austen’s Emma, paperback copy of A Match for Emma (or another one of the Mitchell’s Crossroads books, if preferred), a ‘love’ ornament,  a mug that reads “You’re my cup of tea”, and Misty Mountain handcrafted soap (made locally) – the scent is Mountain Berries!

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight November 9, 2019 and last through 11:59 PM EST on November 16, 2019. Open internationally except where prohibited by law or logistics. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Saturday, #TRD, Book Review, A Match for Emma, Pepper Basham, JustRead Publicity Tours

Brett Armstrong

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The Tales of Missus P.

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lynnjsimpson.wordpress.com/

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Zoe M. McCarthy

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