Monday, July 21, 2014

Firewall

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Firewall
Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (July 1, 2014)
by
DiAnn Mills


MY THOUGHTS:
LOVED this book! DiAnn Mills is a fabulous suspense writer, and this is her best book yet. The depth of the plot, the speed of the action, and the commitment of the characters to resolve the multiple crises are unsurpassed.

This is a book that is almost impossible to put down -- don't plan to read it if you have other commitments!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


DiAnn Mills believes her readers should “Expect an Adventure.” She is a fiction writer who combines an adventuresome spirit with unforgettable characters to create action-packed novels. Her books have won many awards through American Christian Fiction Writers, and she is the recipient of the Inspirational Reader’s Choice award for 2005, 2007, and 2010. She was a Christy Award finalist in 2008 and a Christy winner in 2010.

DiAnn is a founding board member for American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Inspirational Writers Alive, Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and is the Craftsman Mentor for the Christian Writer’s Guild. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops.

DiAnn and her husband live in Houston, Texas. Visit her website or find her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/diannmills


ABOUT THE BOOK

After a whirlwind romance, Taryn Young is preparing to board a plane at Houston International Airport, bound for a dream honeymoon, when a bomb decimates the terminal. Injured but still alive, she awakens to discover her husband is missing and they’re both considered prime suspects in the attack. Further, the FBI is convinced her husband isn’t who he appears to be.

Agent Grayson Hall’s number-one priority is to catch those responsible for the day’s act of terror. All evidence is pointing to Taryn and her new husband. But his instinct tells him her pleas of innocence are genuine. Is her naiveté just for show, or could she truly be another victim of a master scheme, possibly linked to the software she recently developed for her company?

With both their lives and reputations on the line, and the media outcry for justice increasing with each passing minute, Taryn and Grayson have no choice but to trust one another . . . and pray they can uncover the truth before they become two more casualties.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Firewall, go HERE.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Love Comes Home

Love Comes Home
by
Ann H. Gabhart

MY THOUGHTS:
This is a story of love and redemption set post World War II. It is the third and last book in a series. I did not get to read the first two books, Angel Sister and Small Town Girl, and that had a big impact on my perspectives of the book. While you wouldn't necessarily have to read the first two books, I'd highly recommend it. There are apparently important back stories that significantly impact this last book.

I loved the cast of characters in the book! It is set in a small town, and the town of Rosey Corner has interesting folk. Each is well developed and lovable in his or her own way. Ann Gabhart takes you beyond initial perception into the heart of each in a fascinating way.

This is more of a romance story than a historical novel, and it is a fun read.

ABOUT THE BOOK (from the back cover):
World War II is finally over and the people of Rosey Corner are joyfully welcoming the boys home. The Merritt sisters in particular are looking toward the future. Kate is eager to start a family and live out her dream of happily ever after with Jay. Evangeline craves a beautiful house and encourages Mike to pastor a big-town church. Victoria wants what can never be. And Lorena is growing up and wondering more and more about her birth family.

Each sister must learn to hold her plans with a loose hand, trusting that God will guide and strengthen them as they share the joys and sorrows of life in their little corner of the world.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several novels, including Angel Sister, Words Spoken True, The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. Find out more at www.annhgabhart.com.

Atlas Girl

Atlas Girl
by
Emily T. Wierenga


MY THOUGHTS:
This is a heartfelt memoir of Emily Wierenga's search for God and self. She bares her faults, longings, failures, and dreams, and leads the reader to a deeper sense of God.

That said, I had a difficult time with this book. Emily weaves past and present together in a way that seemed somewhat confusing to me. I had to continually go back and forth to figure out where in the world she was, who some people were, and what the time frame was of the chapter.

I appreciated her authenticity and transparency in her search for God. She gives a perspective that one doesn't often see -- how a missionary's daughter and Bible college graduate, too, can question her faith and lose sight of the end goal.

ABOUT THE BOOK (from the back cover):
Emily Wierenga left home at age eighteen with no intention of ever returning. Broken down by organized religion, a childhood battle with anorexia, and her parents' rigidity, she set out to find God somewhere else -- anywhere else. Her travels took her across three continents in buses cars, and planes, across mountains and over deep blue seas.

What she hadn't realized was that her faith was waiting for her the whole time -- in the place she least expected it.

Poignant and passionate, Atlas Girl is a deeply personal story of the yearning we all share to be truly known, entirely forgiven, and utterly loved.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
 Emily T. Wierenga is an award-winning journalist, columnist, artist, author, and blogger at www.emilywierenga.com. She speaks regularly about her journey with anorexia and lives in Alberta, Canada, with her husband, Trenton, and their two sons.

Death Takes a Ride

Death Takes A Ride
by
Lorena McCourtney


MY THOUGHTS:
Another winner by Lorena McCourtney! I'm not sure you can legally call this a cozy mystery anymore since the main character is now a Private Eye, but it has that feel. This is the third book in the series The Cate Kinkaid Files, but honestly you wouldn't have to read the first two books to enjoy it.

I love how Cate gets herself into crazy scenarios, through no fault of her own, and how she uses her intelligence, gut feel, and tenacity to get through some really tough situations. The story is very well written and Lorena always surprises me with the ending.

I hope this series goes on for a LONG time!

You can buy the book here.

ABOUT THE BOOK (from the back cover):
It's official. This case is above her pay grade -- and Cate's in over her head.  Cate Kinkaid arrives at H&B Vintage Auto Restorations to give a friend a ride. But, as usual, trouble finds Cate even there -- this time in the form of one dead man, one wounded man, and what appears to be a pretty obvious case of self-defense.

Despite having been merely an unfortunate bystander, Cate finds herself sucked into the case. Ad the deeper she gets, the more she begins to suspect that the shooting in the H&B office may not have been as cut-and-dried as it appeared.

Bestselling and award-winning author Lorena McCourtney takes you o a wild ride in this clever cozy mystery that will keep you guessing.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Lorena McCourtney is the New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of dozens of novels, including Invisible (which won a Daphne du Maurier Award from Romance Writers of America), Dying to Read, and Dolled Up to Die. She resides in Oregon. Learn more at www.lorenamccourtney.com

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Plain Faith

Plain Faith
by
Irene & Ora Jay Eash
with Tricia Goyer



MY THOUGHTS:
This is the true story of an Amish family that survives a terrible tragedy, seeking God in a deeper way as a result. They are strong in the Amish faith, but start to realize that maybe there is more. More grace, more freedom, more relationship.

I was fascinated with this book. I enjoy the genre of Amish fiction, but loved the honest peek into their world. This book caused me to evaluate my own level of faith and understanding of God, resulting in a deeper commitment to my relationship with Him.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys learning about other cultures or is examining his or her own faith.

See the trailer and meet the Eash's here


ABOUT THE BOOK:
This is the true story of Ora-Jay and Irene Eash, Amish farmers from northwest Montana whose lives changed in an instant when a semi-truck struck the family buggy, killing their two young daughters. After the accident, the couple turned to their Amish community for comfort, but they remained haunted by the thought that they might not see their girls again in heaven. Would their deeds be good enough?
Eventually Ora-Jay and Irene learned that grace—not works—was enough to ensure their place in eternity. But with that knowledge came the realization that they could no longer live in an Amish community that didn’t share this precious belief. Could they sever their connection to the Amish family they loved? This is the story of their journey to the hope that is heaven, a hope stronger than the loss of children, family, and a way of life.
“Fans of Amish fiction will appreciate such a real-life look into the Amish community, co-written by bestselling author Tricia Goyer, and readers of all kinds will resonate with this tale of courage, resilience, and the redemption found in the grace of Jesus.”


ABOUT THE AUTHORS:
Ora Jay ad Irene Eash live in Northwest Montana where they have a small horse farm, offering sleigh and wagon rides. Six of their nine children are married and they have six grandchildren,. You can find out more at www.cripplecreekhorseranch.com

USA Today bestselling author Tricia Goyer is the author of 35 books, including the three-book Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors Series. She has written over 500 articles for national publications and blogs for high-traffic sites like TheBetterMom.com and MomLifeToday.com

Monday, June 23, 2014

Rival Hearts

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Rival Hearts
Abingdon Press (June 17, 2014)
by
Tara Randel


MY THOUGHTS:
 I enjoy the Quilter's Heart series of books. Each is written by a different author and uses a unique quilt style as a focal point of the story. 

Rival Hearts is a fun story based on a contest established by the head of a magazine enterprise. There is a new magazine starting, and he is pitting two of his best editors against each other for the coveted role of editor. Each is given a challenge to accomplish a specific task related to the OTHER'S field of expertise and then write about it. The editor of the quilting magazine must compete in a kayak race, and the editor of the outdoor adventure magazine must create a quilt.

The story is full of fun competition, funny experiences, and budding romance. I love the concept of the story, but I was a bit disappointed in its execution. At times it felt rote and stereotypical, and I was disappointed that I'd figured out the ending by page 104.

But I'd recommend it as a good beach read!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Tara Randel has enjoyed a lifelong love of books, especially romance and mystery genres, so it didn't come as a surprise when she began writing with the dream of becoming published. After finding Romantic Times magazine in a bookstore many years ago, she found information about writing organizations. Soon after, she joined Romance Writers of America. She located the local RWA chapter and immediately attended her first meeting. There was no stopping her after that!

Through Tampa Area Romance Authors, Tara learned all about the business of publishing, starting with the craft of writing to behind the scenes of publishing. She served as contest coordinator for four years and served as President for one year, enjoying the organization and the lasting friendships made there.

When not writing, Tara owns a business with her husband and stays busy with her two daughters. She lives on the West Coast of Florida, where gorgeous sunsets inspire the creation of heartwarming stories, filled with love, laughter and the occasional mystery. Enjoy!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Molly Henderson and Ben Weaver have been rival magazine writers for the same publishing group for years. When both come up for the same promotion, they find themselves in an unexpected competition to win the spot. Molly, editor of Quilter’s Heart, and Ben, editor of Outdoor Adventures, must switch roles, each working for the other for one month, then submit an article at the end of their quests.

Can girly-girl Molly survive the outdoor adventures that Ben has planned? Can Ben navigate the perils of the social dynamics of quilting events without destroying a valuable quilt in one short month? More importantly, in this he-said, she-said situation, will Molly and Ben give in to their attraction and fall in love, no matter who wins?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Rival Hearts, go HERE.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Finding Spiritual Whitespace

Finding Spiritual Whitespace -- Awakening Your Soul to Rest
by
Bonnie Gray



MY THOUGHTS:
I enjoy the way Bonnie Gray writes from her heart and connects with the reader as if they are in the same room sharing a cup of coffee. She has some great ideas at the end of the book for finding a piece of quiet and rest for your soul.

That said, I found it difficult to connect with the majority of this book. Gray had a tragic childhood and she uses her healing process as a foundation for the book. The basic elements of the book and many of the activity prompts at the end of each chapter seem best fit for someone who has been through their own life trauma. I found myself feeling guilty that I had a great childhood and pretty happy life!

This book would be a wonderful gift to a friend who needs to heal from difficult events in her life.

ABOUT THE BOOK (From the back cover):
Move beyond surviving to a rejuvenation place of soul rest.
How many of us find ourselves running on empty with no time for rest, no time for ourselves, no time for God?

Bonie Gray knows what that's like. On the brink of fulfillig a liofelong dream, she saw her plans shatter into a journey through painful memories and anxiety. In her search for answers, she made an important discovery: we all need spiritual whitespace.

Whitespace. Its the space left on a page left unmarked. Untouched. Whitespace makes art beautiful. It gives the eye a place to rest. Just like beautiful art, our souls need balance and beauty.

With heartbreaking honesty, Bonnie guedes you to discover a better story for yourself, one that feeds your soul and makes room for rest. Infused wiht biblical enouragement and thought-provoking prompts, this book shows us how to create space i teh everyday for God, refreshment, and faith -- right in the midst of our stress-frayed lives.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Bonnie Gray is the soulful writer behind FaithBarista.com, serving up shots of faith for the daily grind. Her work is featured on DaySpring (in)courage and nationally syndicated on Crosswalk.com.After graduating from UCLA, Bonnie served as a missionary, ministry entrepreneur, and Silicon Valley high-tech professional. She lives in Northern California with her husband, Eric, and their two sons.

You can check out her website HERE.http://www.faithbarista.com/

Yankee in Atlanta

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Yankee in Atlanta
River North(June 1, 2014)
by
Jocelyn Green


MY THOUGHTS:
I am fascinated by this series. Jocelyn Green does an amazing job of researching history, using actual events from journals, and turns snippets about life into fabulous stories that make the reader feel like she is there.

A Yankee in Atlanta provides a shocking look into the life of those left behind during the Civil War. We hear bits and pieces of the horrors of war, but seldom get a look at the specific things wives and children had to deal with when their men were off fighting. 

This book shows the realities of the strength and resourcefulness women on both sides of the war found within themselves when things got tough.

I would like to read more about Caitlin's year BEFORE this story takes place!

This book is a must read for history buffs.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Jocelyn Green is a child of God, wife and mom living in Cedar Falls, Iowa. She is also an award-winning journalist, author, editor and blogger. Though she has written nonfiction on a variety of topics, her name is most widely recognized for her ministry to military wives: Faith Deployed. Her passion for the military family was fueled by her own experience as a military wife, and by the dozens of interviews she has conducted with members of the military for her articles and books, Faith Deployed: Daily Encouragement for Military Wives and its sequel, Faith Deployed...Again: More Daily Encouragement for Military Wives. She is also co-author of both Stories of Faith and Courage from the War in Iraq & Afghanistan and Stories of Faith and Courage from the Home Front (forthcoming, May 2012). Her Faith Deployed Web site and Facebook page continue to provide ongoing support, encouragement and resources for military wives worldwide.

ABOUT THE BOOK

When soldier Caitlin McKae woke up in Atlanta after being wounded in battle, the Georgian doctor who treated her believed Caitlin's only secret was that she had been fighting for the Confederacy disguised as a man. In order to avoid arrest or worse, Caitlin hides her true identity and makes a new life for herself in Atlanta. Trained as a teacher, she accepts a job as a governess to the daughter of Noah Becker, a German immigrant lawyer, who is about to enlist with the Rebel army. Then in the spring of 1864, Sherman's troops edge closer to Atlanta. Caitlin tries to escape north with the girl, but is arrested on charges of being a spy. Will honor dictate that Caitlin follow the rules, or love demand that she break them?

Id you would like to read the first chapter of Yankee in Atlanta, go HERE.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Lawman's Oklahoma Sweetheart

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Lawman's Oklahoma Sweetheart
Love Inspired (June 3, 2014)
by
Allie Pleiter


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Enthusiastic but slightly untidy mother of two, Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and nonfiction. An avid knitter, harp player and non-reformed chocoholic, she spends her days writing books, doing laundry, running carpools and finding new ways to avoid housework. Allie grew up in Connecticut, holds a BS in speech from Northwestern University and currently lives in suburban Chicago, Illinois. The "dare from a friend" to begin writing eight years ago has blossomed into a career that includes numerous public speaking engagements, two books on parenting; Becoming a Chief Home Officer and Facing Every Mom's Fears and now novels for Steeple Hill Books. She is the mother of two children and, most recently, a Havanese dog named Bella.


ABOUT THE BOOK


When Katrine Brinkerhoff's cabin is attacked, only sheriff Clint Thornton's heroism saves her. She owes Clint her life—and her help catching the men responsible. All she has to do is trust in Clint's plan to protect her family. But she can't let herself care too deeply, not when her past carries secrets that would drive him away.

Infiltrating the murderous gang is a dirty job, yet Clint is determined to see it through. The brigands will face justice—and they will never harm Katrine again. Clint would give his life to keep the beautiful settler safe…but will he be willing to risk his heart?

Bridegroom Brothers: True love awaits three siblings in the Oklahoma Land Rush

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Lawman's Oklahoma Sweetheart, go HERE.

Friday, May 23, 2014

One More Last Chance

One More Last Chance
by
Cathleen Armstrong

MY THOUGHTS:
This is the second book in Armstrong's A Place to Call Home series, and it is every bit as good as the first! If you haven't read Welcome to Last Chance, you wouldn't know this is a second in the series. I was thrilled to see Lainie and some of my other friends from the first book make appearances, but the were reintroduced appropriately.

Armstrong must have an innate sense about people, because she is able to instill honest angst and happiness into multiple characters in a way that feels totally natural. I really enjoy how each character has depth and believability, not stereotypical behavior. I'm definitely looking forward to the third book.

I recommend this book as a great read for a front porch swing and some lemonade or a day on the beach!

ABOUT THE BOOK (from the back cover):
Some things never change. . . and some things change you forever.
Sarah Cooley has come home to Last Chance, New Mexico, for one reason -- because it doesn't change. After a relationship gone bad with a man who wanted to change everything about her, Sarah is more than ready for the town whose motto may as well be, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

Chris Reed, on the other hand, wants nothing more than to spark some change in the little town. As the new owner of the Dip 'n' Dine, he's shaking things up to draw folks from all over the Southwest into his restaurant.

As it turns out, the winds of change are blowing into Last Chance --just not in the ways that Sarah or Chris might expect.

With the same evocative writing and charming characters that won fans for her debut novel, Cathleen Armstrong invites you back to Last Chance for a heartwarming, romantic story of two people navigating the twists and turns of life in a small town.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Cathleen Armstrong is the award-winning author of Welcome to Last Chance. Though she lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, her roots remain deep in New Mexico where she grew up and where much of her family still lives. Learn more at http://www.cathleenarmstrong.com