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Archive for June, 2020

BLOGWORDS – Tuesday 30 June 2020 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE GREEN DRESS by LIZ TOLSMA

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY – BOOK REVIEW – THE GREEN DRESS by LIZ TOLSMA

The Green Dress FB Banner

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

The Green Dress

Book:  The Green Dress

Author: Liz Tolsma

Genre: Christian Historical Suspense

Release Date: June 2020

 

THE BLURB

Death Seems to Follow Harriet’s New Friend

Book 6 in the True Colors series—Fiction Based on Strange-But True History

When Harriet Peters came to Boston in 1882, the Robinson family took her in like one of their own, and Harriet became closer to Lizzie Robinson than her own siblings. Now, four years later, Lizzie is deathly sick, failing quickly just like several others in her family have done over the past few years. How can so many in one family die from the same mysterious illness? Harriet doesn’t have answers, but she is determined to help the family, bringing in a new-to-the-neighborhood doctor, Michael Wheaton.
As Harriet and Michael close in on the answer, putting their own lives at risk, can the cause be found before anyone else dies?

Click here to get your copy!

 

THE AUTHOR

LizTolsmaLiz Tolsma is a popular speaker and an editor and the owner of the Write Direction Editing. An almost-native Wisconsinite, she resides in a quiet corner of the state with her husband and is the mother of three. Her son proudly serves as a U.S. Marine. They adopted all of their children internationally, and one has special needs. When she gets a few spare minutes, she enjoys reading, relaxing on the front porch, walking, working in her large perennial garden, and camping with her family.

MORE FROM LIZ

We’ve all been there—started a letter or an email or even a list, didn’t like what we had, crossed it out or hit the delete button, and tried again. Now imagine that happening when you’re writing a novel.

That’s what occurred with The Green Dress. Finding the perfect place to start a novel can be tricky, but when you’re trying to balance fact with fiction, it’s even harder. I needed the fictional heroine, Harriet Peters, to have a good reason to come into contact with and become close to the factual Robinson family. And I needed for the hero, Michael Wheaton, to meet Harriet early on. So I dove into the story. Five chapters later, the hero and heroine hadn’t yet met. The book wasn’t working.

I scrapped those chapters and started at a different point. At first, it seemed to be going better. I was happy. Until I got to the fifth chapter, when I realized again that the book wasn’t working. Frankly, it was boring. So those ended up in the virtual trash bin. Meanwhile, the clock was ticking on my deadline. I was desperate to find the right starting point, at a place with high tension. Finally, I had an “aha” moment, and the story flowed from there. That’s how the first five chapters (and the rest of The Green Dress) came to be.

 

—Liz Tolsma

 

MY REVIEW

This series!! What horrific tales!!! The depravity of man exposed in a “palatable” fashion—fiction, with fictional characters woven deftly through the fabric of the story.

Ms. Tolsma opens her story with a chilling scene, dousing the reader immediately with high drama and tension. As Lizzie fades away and Harriet struggles with the loss, Mrs. Robinson stands out as either a suffering mother and victim herself—or a sinister and wicked woman.

I was fond of Harriet and appreciated her devotion to the Robinson family. But I questioned her willingness to be manipulated; it happens of course, but Harriet was clever and quite tenacious at times, too.

While the story was gripping—who was the guilty party and why—I felt that it rather dragged on somewhat. The dialogue was, for this reader, dry and bland. And though Mrs. Robinson was a seamstress, there was (if memory serves) only one vague reference to a green dress with a subtle implication that it presaged Harriet’s death, which begged the question of the purpose of the title.

Still, as the story built, and more people died, the more I kept turning the pages to find out the answers.

 

ROBIN’S FEATHERS

Slide3 THREE 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

amazon gift card

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

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/fcd8/the-green-dress-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

BLOG STOPS

The Power of Words, June 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 26

deb’s Book Review, June 26

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, June 26

A Reader’s Brain, June 27

Rebecca Tews, June 27

For Him and My Family, June 27

Texas Book-aholic, June 28

Back Porch Reads, June 28

Inklings and notions, June 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 28

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, June 29

Genesis 5020, June 29

Emily Yager, June 29

Christian Bookaholic, June 30

Robin’s Nest, June 30

To Everything There is A Season, June 30

Tell Tale Book Reviews, June 30

Blogging With Carol, July 1

Bigreadersite, July 1

Read Review Rejoice, July 1

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, July 2

Life of Literature, July 2

Connie’s History Classroom, July 2

Betti Mace, July 3

Southern Gal Loves to Read, July 3

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, July 3

Stories By Gina, July 3

For the Love of Literature, July 4

Remembrancy, July 4

Reviewingbooksplusmore, July 4

Godly Book Reviews, July 5

Splashes of Joy, July 5

Vicky Sluiter, July 5

Older & Smarter?, July 6

Through the Fire Blogs, July 6

Daysong Reflections, July 6

amandainpa, July 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, July 7

Pause for Tales , July 7

Just the Write Escape, July 7

Hallie Reads, July 8

Where Faith and Books Meet, July 8

Blossoms and Blessings, July 8

Spoken from the Heart, July 9

With a Joyful Noise, July 9

Artistic Nobody, July 9 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day, #TRD, Book Review, The Green Dress, Liz Tolsma, Celebrate Lit Publicity

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BLOGWORDS – Saturday 20 June 2020 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW TRIPLE HEADER #3 – THE MISCHIEF THIEF by JOHNNIE ALEXANDER

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW TRIPLE HEADER #3 – THE MISCHIEF THIEF by JOHNNIE ALEXANDER

Banner_TheMischiefThief_Reviewer_JR

 

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THE BLURB

Two wrongs don’t make a right . . . except when they do.

For con artist Chaney Rose, life hasn’t been easy. In desperate need of cash, she readily agrees to find Mischief, a stolen racehorse. Hunting for clues, she breaks into the suspected horse thief’s home only to be caught—with a few pilfered items in her pockets—by the police detective who’s tailing her.
By-the-book Adam Thorne was fired from his church because of his father’s involvement with the valuable thoroughbred. In a burst of Les Miserables-inspired grace, Adam tells the detective that he gave Chaney the stolen items.
Adam wants Chaney to find his missing father. When Chaney learns that Mischief’s owner intends to kill the racehorse, she needs Adam’s help expose the cruel plan before it’s too late.
Will a con artist with a conscience and a minister without a ministry risk imprisonment to do the wrong thing for the right reason?

THE AUTHOR

46218_479173815438304_1361086574_nJohnnie Alexander is a wannabe vagabond with a heart for making memories. Whether at home or on the road, she creates characters you want to meet and imagines stories you won’t forget.
Her award-winning debut novel, Where Treasure Hides, is a CBA bestseller and has been translated into Dutch and Norwegian. She also writes contemporary romances, cozy mysteries, and historical novellas. The Mischief Thief is her first suspense novel.
Johnnie is on the executive boards of Serious Writer, Inc. and Mid-South Christian Writers Conference, co-hosts an online show called Writers Chat, and interviews inspirational authors for her Novelists Unwind program. She also teaches at writers conferences and for Serious Writer Academy.
A fan of classic movies, stacks of books, and road trips, Johnnie shares a life of quiet adventure with Griff, her happy-go-lucky collie, and Rugby, her raccoon-treeing papillon.

 

MY REVIEW

What a wonderful story!

We all have them. Life circumstances that we never thought we’d have to face. Perhaps not so overt or drastic as to steal to keep from going hungry. Perhaps more subtle, more “excusable,” more hidden. Sometimes, though, it’s simply all we have ever known. Like Chaney Rose.

And sometimes, we think we’re above all that. Like Adam Thorne. After all, he was a minister. A man of God. How would he have undesirable character traits?

Ms. Alexander poses not only these questions, but she mixes the two—Chaney and Adam—in a tale of mixed emotions. And perhaps some mixed ethics.

Iron sharpens iron as circumstance repeatedly throws Chaney and Adam together, smoothing the rough edges of their initial meeting.

A peculiar mix of near childlike guile and innocence and a sharp wit and cunning mind, Chaney rambles through her life, and into Adam’s. With no real conviction, save for concern for others—and especially for Mischief—the niggling guilt of her lifestyle and profession press against her. The kindness—the Les Miserable twist—that Adam shows her imprints on her heart, begging questions she’d not dared ask before.

Ms. Alexander builds the adventure, teasing the reader with every word, every page, pushing to the end, and [SPOILER] outcome.

 

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.

 

just read logo

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Saturday, #TRD, Book Review Triple Header #3, The Mischief Thief, Johnnie Alexander, JustRead Publicity Tour

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BLOGWORDS – Saturday 20 June 2020 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW TRIPLE HEADER #2 – VICTORIA GRACE: THE JERKFACE by S.E. CLANCY

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW TRIPLE HEADER #2 – VICTORIA GRACE: THE JERKFACE by S.E. CLANCY

Victoria grace the jerk face

 

ABOUT THE BOOK

Victoria Grace front

Book:  Victoria Grace: The Jerkface

Author: S.E. Clancy

Genre:  Young Adult Contemporary

Release Date: June 15, 2020

THE BLURB

Ever since Tori Weston and MamaBear were abandoned by her dad, finances have been tighter than a new pair of skinny jeans. As if keeping her grades up for scholarships and working every spare moment weren’t enough, Tori gets suckered into visiting a retirement home and paired with ancient resident Marigold Williams. After learning she’s the only one to visit Marigold in decades, Tori becomes a regular at Willow Springs. Besides, someone has to help with her history homework.

Corbin Dallas barges into Tori’s life with a prosthetic leg and a dimple, working his way into her hectic schedule. Though she tries to deny it, there’s something beyond his Texan drawl that gets Tori hoping she’s more than his sidekick. Together, they race to find Marigold’s missing family before she fades away. Tori ditches her soul-sucking job, along with her dreams of having a paint-peeled clunker to call her own, in order to help her friend one last time.

Click here to get your copy!

THE AUTHOR

SE Clancy 260

S.E. Clancy (aka Sarah) is a bit of a sci-fi nerd, geek, and self-proclaimed dork. There isn’t much she won’t try at least once…unless it involves mayonnaise, because that stuff is just gross. You can learn more about her at seclancy.com.

 

 

MORE FROM S.E.

Victoria Grace the Jerkface started as a short story after I’d listened to my favorite song by Nat King Cole: The Christmas Song. I’d overheard a teenager say, “I don’t even know what a chestnut is.” I typed that into a note on my phone because it struck a chord. Within days, a photographer named Tom Hussey issued a series called “Reflections” that featured elderly people gazing into mirrors and seeing their younger selves. That same night, one of my children asked for a project to earn school credits. Like flint to tinder, the idea of this teenager who didn’t know what a chestnut was having to visit an older person left in a care home began to grow.

To add in a bit of my mom and myself to the story, I had my main character Tori (Victoria Grace) love her mom’s meatloaf. It’s a recipe that my mom used from her grandma, an amazing woman we called Grandma Ted.

Ted’s Meatloaf

  • 1 pound thawed ground beef or turkey
  • 1 packet of dry onion soup mix
  • 1 – 2 heels of bread torn into dime-sized pieces (1 for turkey, 2 for beef)
  • 1 egg

Preheat oven to 350. Mix all ingredients in a single bowl. Works best if you use your hands, but mix really well if you use a spoon to incorporate all of the ingredients.

Spray a loaf pan with non-stick spray. Do not use parchment paper—no one wants a soggy bottom. Plop the entire mixture into the pan and place into the middle of the oven. Cook for an hour.

This recipe doubles easily, just change the cooking time to 1 ½ – 1 ¾ hours and check the internal temp with a thermostat.

 

MY REVIEW

Ms. Clancy has shoved some very real and very deep issues into a quirky and entertaining. Told in first person—this reader’s favorite point of view—Jerkface is a discovery of one teen’s wretched existence. Wretched being Tori’s own perception.

The dialogue is simply delightful—a make it or break it for this reader—and Ms. Clancy has written winning dialogue, crackling with humor and very real evasive non-answers and almost slapstick flirting.

Marigold is just a delightful old lady, full of sparkle if not vim and vigor. Tori’s connection to her is quick, and deep, an old soul leading and schooling a young whippersnapper.

And Corbin! Can I just say, oh my! And swoon for a minute!!! The epitome of friendly Southern kindness.

An enjoyable story with lessons none of us are ever too old to learn (or revisit) that kept me turning the pages!

 

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.

TOUR GIVEAWAY

Victoria Grace giveaway

To celebrate her tour, S.E. is giving away the grand prize package of signed book, origami bookmark, marigold seeds, & $10 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/fc81/victoria-grace-the-jerkface-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

BLOG STOPS

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, June 15

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, June 16

Books, Life, and Christ, June 16

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, June 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 18

Texas Book-aholic, June 19

Inklings and notions, June 20

Robin’s Nest, June 20

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 21

Nancy E Wood , June 21

For Him and My Family, June 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 23

deb’s Book Review, June 24

Batya’s Bits, June 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 26

CarpeDiem, June 26

Pause for Tales, June 27

Artistic Nobody, June 28 (Guest Review from Kelsey Barela)

 

 

#Blogwords, Tuesday Reviews-Day-on-Saturday, #TRD, Book Review Triple Header #2, Victoria Grace: The Jerkface, S.E. Clancy, Celebrate Lit

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BLOGWORDS – Saturday 20 June 2020 – TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW TRIPLE HEADER #1 – WHERE THE ROAD BENDS by DAVID RAWLINGS

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TUESDAY REVIEWS-DAY-on-SATURDAY – BOOK REVIEW TRIPLE HEADER #1 – WHERE THE ROAD BENDS by DAVID RAWLINGS

 

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THE BLURB

He ripped back the zip, his heart pounding as red dust trickled in and landed on his face. He stood, brushing the dust from his eyes, a sense of vertigo launching itself up his spine. One step from the swag and his eyes snapped open. He started to lean into a void. Over a cliff. 

Fifteen years after college graduation, four friends reconnect to keep a long-ago promise and go on a trip of a lifetime in the Australian Outback.

Eliza needs to disconnect from her high-powered fashion job to consider the CEO position she’s just been offered. Lincoln hopes to rekindle a past relationship and escape from another one. Bree looks forward to a fun getaway from home and her deeply buried disappointments. Andy wants to disappear from the mess he’s made of his life—possibly forever.

Dropped at a campsite in the middle of nowhere, the friends quickly discover they aren’t the same people they once were, and they begin to confront hard truths about one another—and themselves. Then a bizarre storm sweeps across their camp, scattering them across the desert. Wondering if they are part of some strange escape game, each of the friends meets a guide to help them find exactly what they need: purpose, healing, courage, and redemption.

But they’ve already traveled far down the road of life and course-correcting to become the people they were meant to be won’t be easy.

 

THE AUTHOR

headshot-david-rawlings

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.

 

MY REVIEW

Mr. Rawlings sure knows how to dig deep into the souls of his characters, weaving powerful and poignant and heart wrenching stories around them, weaving the tattered threads of each character’s story into a single compelling tapestry.

Four friends stuck in their journey in life. A reunion that, when planned, was to have been a joyous celebration of their successes and happiness in life. The reality that all were hiding their own truths and none were prepared to reveal their failures, both real and perceived.

Just as God uses dreams and visions and “strangers unaware,” so, too, does Mr. Rawlings take his characters—and his readers—behind the veil, to witness the deeply personal and spiritual moments of truth and revelation.

What once had been a tight friendship between the four, Eliza and Bree and Lincoln and Andy, was changed, morphed into an unrecognizable discomfort. As they journeyed to the depths of the Outback of Australia—an adventure and much-appreciated bonus for this reader—the four friends each stepped into a journey into the depths of their own soul.

The imagery, both of the Outback and of the inward visitations, was vivid and riveting, keeping this reader turning pages well into the wee hours.

 

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-Saturday, #TRD, Book Review Triple Header #1, Where the Road Bends, David Rawlings

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