Gail's Book Nook

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Looking in the Window: Happy New Year Sale for Stopped Cold and Other Titles with Publishing by Rebecca J. Vickery







HAPPY NEW YEAR!


Snag a copy of Stopped Cold for 99 cents

OR request a Smashwords Code and grab a
copy for FREE there through December 30th.
Just leave an e-mail address below.











Check out all of the books on sale or free with Publishing by Rebecca J. Vickery on Once Upon a Word on Facebook  and the blog.

Readers Say Stopped Cold's Great for Teens and Adults

“Stopped Cold is filled with emotion, strong characters, teenage romance, adventure, danger and the intricate workings of modern day high school studies and sports.” Larry Hammersley.

“…follow Margaret’s journey to discover the depth of true character and faith not only in school and friends, but family.” Author and Book Reviewer Lisa Lickel.

“They…” (the characters) “..are as finely tuned as a lovely stringed instrument, each having a different song to play in the story.” Book Reviewer Barbara Shelton

"This is a great read. I recommend it for teens or adults alike. It certainly kept me turning the pages to see what would happen next when Margaret, Jimmy, and their friend Emily go out looking to stop dangerous drug dealers." Connie C

More About Stopped Cold

Things aren’t what they seem in peaceful Mistville, North Carolina. Margaret McWhorter enjoys a laid-back Freshman year in high school flirting with Jimmy Willmore, swimming and hanging out with friends—until that day. Her brother, Sean, suffers a stroke from taking a steroid. Now he’s lying unconscious in a hospital. Margaret’s angry at her dad for pushing Sean to be a great quarterback, but a fire of hatred burns inside her to make the criminals pay. Looking for justice, she takes Jimmy and her best friend, Emily, through a twisted, drug-filled sub-culture. A clue sends them deep into the woods behind the school where they overhear drug dealers discuss Sean. Time and time again they walk a treacherous path and come face to face with danger. Even the cop on the case can’t stop them from investigating. All the while Margaret really wants to cure Sean, heal the hate inside, and open her heart to love.

Stopped Cold finished fourth in the 16th Annual Preditors and Editors Readers Poll 

A 2013 Grace Awards Finalist


Buy on Amazon
Smashwords (Code for free copy good through December 30st.)
Barnes and Noble
Kobo
iTunes

Read more about Stopped Cold and Gail's other books at http://www.gailpallotta.com


Thursday, December 22, 2016

When Is Christmas?


Some say Christ wasn’t born on December 25th. They claim Christians took the date from a Roman holiday to rival the pagan feasts that took place during the Winter Solstice. This occasion honored a new age brought by the sun. Depending on location, the Winter Solstice occurs on or around December 25th. However, the date pales in the significance of Christ’s life. It’s His arrival, Gospel of love and unconditional sacrifice that massive numbers of Christians around the world celebrate each year on December 25th.

Christ is born!


“And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ, the Lord.” (Luke 2: 8 – 11). (Photo courtesy of Google images)


Christ’s Gospel of Love! 



“Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question. Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:  34- 40)
(Photo courtesy of Photobucket)


Christ’s Unconditional Sacrifice!



 “Now as Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside and said to them, ‘We are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and the teachers of the law. They will condemn him to death and will turn him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified. On the third day He will be raised to life.’” (Matthew 20: 17 – 18) (Photo courtesy of Pixabay)



Christ’s sacrifice done! His gift, eternal life, given!

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” ( John 3: 16 – 17) (Photo courtesy of Google images)

"Where, O death, is your 
victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?"
(I Corinthians 15: 55)


Christ lives today! Christmas is when we open our hearts to Him!




“…And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28: 20)
(Photo courtesy of Photobucket.)


Celebrate the birth! 
Honor the name, CHRIST, our Savior! 
Sing it! Say it! Praise it! Shout it!

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Looking in the Window: Lost and Found at Christmas, a Barely Above Water Short Story



A peek into Christmas in the lives of Matt and Suzie from Barely Above Water. Originally published in the December issue of  Good Stuff from Gail’s Book Nook. See sidebar to sign up for future copies.



Earlier at the shower

Suzie hadn’t seen Aunt Frieda since Matt and Suzie’s wedding, but Suzie intended to become part of Matt’s remaining family, and she wanted Aunt Frieda to know that. She couldn’t believe she’d forgotten the one thing Aunt Frieda asked Matt and her to bring. But she had it now from the local grocery in Hart’s Mountain, North Carolina, and she was headed back to Aunt Frieda’s house. Her mouth gaped in awe at the landscape.

Icicles hung like crystal tendrils on the barren trees on a precipice to her left. The sun glinted off of them in silver tones. An ice sculpture of cascading water that had frozen in its tracks sparkled on a rock embankment on her right. She couldn’t let this magical wonderland distract her for long, but she’d never seen anything like it.

She leaned her head forward as she crept at a snail’s pace on the slippery road. The car inched over the center line, and she rotated the wheel. The vehicle slid then sped downhill toward the cliff. Suzie’s heart pounded in her chest. She screamed, but there was no one to hear.

***

Matt checked his watch. Suzie had left an hour ago to run a twenty-minute errand. She was so sensitive. Of course, she’d sensed how he yearned to stay close to those he loved, especially at Christmas. Tradition mattered, but now he wished he’d never said he’d brought fruitcake to Aunt Frieda’s ever since Mom died. Suzie had insisted she’d pick it up. Then she got busy throwing the party for the kids he coached in football and writing extra articles for The Sun Dial, the newspaper where she worked in Destin. No wonder she forgot. He wrung his large hands as he paced back and forth in front of Aunt Frieda’s picture window overlooking the snow-covered mountains in the distance. “What was I thinking letting her go out alone?”

Aunt Frieda ran her hands through her dark hair. She looked so much like Mom. The emptiness left in his soul when Mom died seemed worse every Christmas, but right now, he just wanted Suzie back safe and sound.

“Suzie insisted she wanted to take care of it.” Wrinkles creased Aunt Frieda’s brow. “She has her cell phone, doesn’t she?”

“Yes,” Matt called Suzie and got no answer.

“You’re as white as the snow.”

Tears pooled in Matt’s eyes and blurred the ornaments on the Christmas tree. “I lost her once when we were dating because after Mom died...” The words nearly choked him...“I couldn’t deal with illness, and Suzie has Lyme disease.” He wiped his brow. “She’s been so strong and fought so hard to be all right.”

“I’m sure she’s fine. She’ll walk in here any minute. In this weather it could take an extra forty-five minutes to drive to town and back, and she hasn’t been gone that long.”

Aunt Frieda motioned for Matt to sit in the Navy easy chair. He obliged, and she plopped down on the matching sofa.

***

Suzie raised her head off the steering wheel and rubbed it. “Ouch.” Where was she? Why was everything white? Where was her Mom? Oh, Mom died. Suzie sobbed. She missed Mom so much. Ralph, the only Dad she’d ever known, died too. She had no one until she met Matt. Where was he? Her body heaved with more crying.

***

Matt tapped his foot on the hardwood floor. “I can’t wait any longer. I’m going to look for her.”

Aunt Frieda scooted to the edge of the couch. “It won’t hurt to search on your own, but if she isn’t on the main road, you’ll need a four wheel drive to navigate the scenic route.”

Matt slapped his forehead. “She took the drive with a view. I just know it. That’s so like her.”

The color drained from Aunt Frieda’s face. “Let’s go. Fred’s old jeep’s in the garage.”

The two of them jumped up, put on heavy outdoor clothing and left. Frozen snow crunched underneath their boots as they stepped to the garage. Aunt Frieda handed Matt the keys and slipped into the passenger’s seat. He backed out and ice cracked as the wheels rolled across the driveway.

“You look just like your mom driving the car, the way you held your mouth when you turned the key, and with your dark hair and eyes.” Aunt Frieda shook her head. “This time last year Fred was shoveling snow in the driveway. We have too many holes in our hearts to be so young.” Aunt Frieda gave Matt a friendly jab on the arm. “Well, at least you and Suzie are young.”

“Fifty-two is hardly old.”

Aunt Frieda chuckled and lightened the mood “We’ll always have our memories, but let’s not forget our blessings. Don’t worry. Suzie’s fine. I’m so glad we have her.”

“Me too, we’ll all stay in touch after Christmas. It’s important for us to be here for each other.”

“There’s the base of the road.” Aunt Frieda pointed, and Matt turned onto a steep parkway covered in frozen snow. The jeep slid toward a rock wall on the left, but Matt straightened the car. His heart pounded in his chest, not only at the near miss, but at the thought of Suzie cold and frightened on this treacherous stretch. If only he could floorboard the pedal and zip to her.

The tires spun. Determination filled every fiber of Matt’s being, and he accelerated to pull the vehicle forward. The car slipped toward the guardrail on the right. Sweat popped out on Matt’s brow as he righted the vehicle. He breathed deep trying to relax. “There’s no one else out here, and I can see why.”

“Everyone who lives in these hills knows better. The surface freezes at one end of the road before the snowplows make it to the other. They’ll close it. This storm came up so fast they just haven’t done it yet.”

Large snowflakes pelted the windshield. Matt leaned forward. “Now, I can’t see.”

“Stop! That’s your car!”

A twinge of hope coursed through Matt as he drove to the wreck. “She crashed into the tree growing up from the cliff. That kept her from tumbling over it.” Matt trembled. Tears rushed to his eyes as he cut the engine.

“We know who stopped that car.” Aunt Frieda touched Matt’s arm.

“Oh yes, thank God!” Matt hopped out and charged toward Suzie, slipping, sliding, and waving his arms to keep his balance.

He opened the door, and Suzie grabbed him around the neck so tightly he hardly could breathe. She shivered in his arms. “How long have you been here?”

“I’m not sure. At first I was thinking about Mom and Ralph, and I couldn’t remember where I was.” She turned and picked up a grocery bag from the passenger’s seat. “Here’s the fruitcake.”

Aunt Frieda took tentative steps to them. Suzie slid out of the car and hugged her, and Matt threw his arms around both of them.

Aunt Frieda wiped tears from her cheeks. “Let’s go home and celebrate Christmas!”

The End

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Looking Out the Window: Linda Weaver Clarke Talks About The First Two Books In Her Robin's Rebels Series. Shares Reviews and Sample Chapters










                                A Warm Welcome to Linda Weaver Clarke          

See links below to read sample chapters of The Rebels of Cordovia

and The Highwaymann of Cordovia





In The Rebels of Cordovia, a group of men and women who called themselves Robin’s Rebels realize they must help the people survive this oppression. In this battle for freedom, a love story begins to blossom. Daniel, a rogue and a leader of the Freemen, doesn’t realize that the sweet feminine woman he has met and is falling for happens to be the leader of Robin’s Rebels. Realizing the importance of uniting all the rebel groups, Daniel tries to recruit Robin’s Rebels but they refuse. Now he has to find a way to convince them. When he finds out the leader is actually a woman, what will his reaction be?

After reading this story, Susan Ortlieb from Suko’s Notebook Reviews wrote: “Linda Weaver Clarke writes with passion and grace, and the love story in this book is simply wonderful. In fact, this aspect of the story was the strongest draw for me. (Are love stories set in the past more romantic than those set in the present day?) I thought that Robin and Daniel sounded perfect for each other, and I enjoyed the steady development of their relationship. This charming book was a pleasure to read, and I relished it.”

The tales from The Rebel Series have adventure, sweet romance, and delectable kisses. These are stories of love and liberty that take place between the 18th and 19th Century. In the sequel, The Highwayman of Cordovia, the people enjoy their new-found liberty but all is not well. One year after Cordovia gains its freedom, a group of powerful men plan to take over the small country and replace the leader with a king.

With the help of a bold highwayman and a pastor’s daughter, they try to save their country from being taken over by a power-hungry leader. As they strive to stop the Kingmen and thwart their plans, Christine finds herself falling in love with Austin Knight. The only problem with their relationship is that she thinks he is her knight in shining armor instead of a highwayman. If she finds out his trade, what will her reaction be? As a pastor’s daughter, will love override her values?

“Linda Weaver Clarke has a storyteller's talent for enchanting and mesmerizing the audience. There are also some exciting surprises and twists that will delight the heart. Definitely a must read!” --Cindi Clubbs, Mommasez Reviews




The Highwayman of Cordovia, the second book in The Rebel Series, will be available on Dec 3rd, 2016. Read sample chapters of both books at http://www.lindaweaverclarke.com.

About the Author

Linda Weaver Clarke has traveled throughout the United States, teaching people to write their family history. She is the author of historical romances, mystery/adventure series, a children’s book, and a cozy mystery series. All her books are family friendly. Visit www.lindaweaverclarke.com.

Watch a book Trailer below!


The Rebels of Cordovia from Linda Weaver Clarke on Vimeo.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Looking Out the Window: ACFW December Releases, Including Some Special Christmas Stories




December 2016 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.


Contemporary Romance:

Bella Natale! by Marianne Evans -- An aspiring American artist and the widowed, Italian owner of a premier art gallery meet and fall in love in Florence when he champions her work, but there are her American family's expectations and his five-year-old son to consider. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])

With this Kiss by Marianne Evans -- A kiss stolen in a midnight snow. A jealous colleague at Jonathan's firm is bent on revenge...revenge that puts Isabella's store into legal peril. Will love be enough to see them through? (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])

Mistletoe Daddy by Deb Kastner -- Bubbly Vivian Grainger bids on gruff Nick McKenna at Serendipity Texas's annual Bachelors and Baskets for one reason--to help her build her hair salon; but once Nick finds out she's pregnant, he does his best to build a path to Vivian's heart. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

A Hero for Heather by Marion Ueckermann -- When a "homeless" man she's been helping rescues social worker Heather Blume from a vicious attack, she's so grateful she violates one of the most important rules in her profession--she takes him home to tend his wounds. But the mysterious Paxton Rathbone is no homeless man…he's a gentleman. When feelings grow, and Paxton's past beckons, both he and Heather discover there's a fine line between gratitude and love. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

A Husband for Holly by Marion Ueckermann -- Holly Blume loves decorating people's homes, but that doesn't mean she's ready to play house. Believing a house is not a home without a woman's touch, Reverend Christopher Stewart is in the market for a wife. What woman would consider him marriage material, though, with an aging widowed father to look after, especially one who suffers from Alzheimer's? Despite their differences, Holly resolves to finish her job of redesigning the Stewart home, while Christopher determines to re-form Holly's heart. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Rocky Mountain Cowboy by Tina Radcliffe -- Twelve years after she married another man, Rebecca Anshaw Simpson is back at Joe Gallagher's ranch as his physical therapist. But healing his body is nothing compared to guarding his heart from the woman he never forgot. Becca won't let regret and a surly rancher get in the way of her job and the chance to start over with her little girl. But Becca never expected she'd fall all over again for her first love. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Cozy Mystery:

Christmas Cookie Mystery by Naomi Miller -- With Christmas right around the corner, Katie Chupp and The Sweet Shop get involved in a mystery when a certain dear family finds an unexpected package at their door. (Cozy Mystery from S&G Publishing)

Historical:

Michel: The Fourth Wise Man by Katheryn Maddox Haddad -- This descendant of Daniel, also a wise man, sacrifices everything - his wife, his father, his home - to do what he is convinced God needs him to do, then finds out he was wrong. (Historical from Northern Lights Publishing House)
Five Nights with Pharaoh by Kristen Reed -- Shortly after entering Egypt with her husband, Sarai is taken into Pharaoh’s harem as his newest, most favored concubine. The breathtaking, ageless beauty is forced to cling to her faith in God as she prays for the strength to accept her new position and endures a series of mysterious plagues that can only be indicative of a wrathful deity’s divine judgment. Discover a remarkable reimagining of Sarai’s plight in Egypt, where she humbly set aside her own honor to protect the man through whom all the nations of the earth would be blessed. (Historical - Independently Published)

Historical Romance:

Seven Brides for Seven Texans Romance Collection by Amanda Barratt, Susan Page Davis, Keli Gwyn, Vickie McDonough, Gabrielle Meyer, Lorna Leslie Seilstad, Erica Vetsch -- Meet the seven Hart brothers of the 7-Heart ranch in central Texas. Each man is content in his independent life, without the responsibilities of a wife and children--until their father decides 1874 will be the year his grown sons finally marry, or they will be cut from his will. How will each man who values his freedom respond to the ultimatum? Can love develop on a timeline, or will it be sacrificed for the sake of an inheritance? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

A Pony Express Romance by Misty M. Beller -- Pony Express rider Josiah English and the station master's sister, Mara Reid, fall in love, but when the Express shuts down and Mara's family home is in peril, the danger looming over Mara's life may not be half as destructive as that threatening her heart. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)


Military Suspense:

Conspiracy of Silence by Ronie Kendig -- A former Green Beret is confronted by past mistakes as he and his team battle a centuries-old plague and the terrorists bent on rewriting history. (Military Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])


Romantic Suspense:

Hazardous Holiday by Liz Johnson -- Just in time for the holidays, navy SEAL Zach McCloud returns home from deployment--and discovers someone wants his family dead. When he married his cousin's struggling widow, he vowed to help her and her seriously ill son, and now he'll risk everything to protect them. Even if their arrangement is only temporary. Kristi's certain an unhappy client from the law firm where she works is determined to hunt her down. But when a sniper bullet wildly misses its target, they begin to question whether it's really her someone wants dead. Working together, can they figure out why they've been attacked…and keep little Cody from the nefarious forces dead set on making this Christmas their last? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Christmas Conspiracy by Susan Sleeman -- When Commander Jake Marsh loses control of a hostage situation and Tessa Long is injured, guilt eats at him. He blurs the line between the professional and personal, and visits Tessa at the hospital. But when a man tries to kill her in her hospital room, Jake disregards all of the rules and regulations that have allowed him to control his world and vows to keep her safe no matter what. Trouble is, the situation brings back memories from his childhood of the loss of his entire family, and for the first time in twenty years, he fears he's no longer in charge of his life, and knows when he's out of control bad things happen. Very bad things. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])




Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The Winners of Always With You



Hats...

Horns...

We have two winners for Always With You!

Congratulations Sonnetta and Sonja!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Looking Out the Window: Elaine Stock Talks About Her New Book, Always With You. Gives Away an e-Book





A Warm Welcome to Elaine Stock

Elaine will give away an e-Book of Always With You. To enter to win leave a comment and an e-mail address below.

Hi Elaine, first, tell us a little about yourself.

Born and raised until I was fifteen in Brooklyn, NY, I’ve been living the majority of my life in upstate NY. First my family moved to the northern suburbs of the city, then I met my future husband at Albany State, further upstate, and we’ve been in the Capital District ever since. I grew up in the pre-historic era before computers or cell phones, enjoyed a black and white TV, and played outdoors with the neighbor kids. I believe all this fostered my imagination to create stories. Writing, truthfully, was also my way of coping with a very troubled family life.

Lots of writers loved to read as children. Did you? If so, what did you read?

As emotionally unstable as my mother was, she devoured novels and always had a book in her hand. She made a delightful fuss over me upon getting my first library card, as well as always took my brother and I to the library. So, yes, I loved to read… from billboards as we drove past to advertisements on public buses or museum signs to lots and lots of books. My penchant back then and pretty much now was/is suspense, on all levels.

I enjoy suspense also. Let's talk about your writing. What do you write?

I write what I call family drama fused with psychological suspense. However, I’ve begun my first time-slip novel based loosely on a few mysteries of my own family’s past.

How do you get to know your characters?

Pretty much the same way as my plots unfold: I let the kernel of a story swirl around and incubate in my mind for a while. I then play around with whatever words tap out of my fingers onto the keyboard. Research. Write. Research. Write. Write. Write. Edit. Edit. Edit. I’m a major seat of the pants writer and love the feel of both the characters and the story unfolding as I go along. Every time in the past when I’ve attempted to plot on paper or outline my story died.

What themes do you write about?

I enjoy writing about family and love, exploring how an unsteady family or couple can become stronger and solid. In writing with a slant toward Christian fiction I cannot escape the fact that I believe God’s hands are directly in control of us—if we open our eyes to His glory.

What is your writing schedule and where do you write?

Although I work 4 days a week, having a 3 day weekend, those work days begin with a wakeup time of 3 am and pure physical stand-on-my-feet labor until 1 pm. Throw in commuting time and running errands since I live out in a rural area, by the time I arrive home I’m often beat. That’s why my fantasy goal is to sooner than later “retire” from the day job and write full time. However, now that my first novel has made its debut release this past January I try my best to work on my writing whenever I can. Due to neck problems it’s better for me to work on a laptop on the couch, which is nice in the wintertime because I’m inches away from the woodstove!

Does your faith affect your writing? If so, how?

When I started to write in hopes of publication it was for the ABA-general market. It never made it. True, those were my earlier years of learning the writing craft and I had plenty to learn. Still do! However, it wasn’t until I dedicated my writing to God, matching my heart, that I started to see changes, getting closer and closer until I received a contract. My faith impacts my whole life and I’m unsure how I can separate it from my writing.

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Listen to the advice of others, but definitely become attuned to what works best for you, and when. Believe in yourself even if others don’t. Keep submitting and entering contests despite the lack of contracts offered or not winning the contest, however, seek to improve your writing each time. And my biggest advice: accept the fact that you always, always have something more to learn each and every day, whether it is honing your writing craft, taking risks, promotion, or eating humble pie.

What would you be doing if you weren’t writing?

I’m very grateful to have a first novel out and have hope in future releases. I’m at the age that I don’t want another line of work. I can look back and imagine if things were different what I might have ventured into, but can’t we all?

What is the coolest, wackiest, most risk-taking thing you’ve ever done?

Continuing with what I said in response to the above question, the most risk-taking thing I’ve ever done is believing in my writing (though it took me many years to first become published). This means, unlike many others, I have not chased after a high-paying job and put my writing second. This means, I admit, struggling and juggling lots. But it also means trusting God. All the time. Every second.



About Always With You

Can she move forward without knowing her past?

Will he enjoy his present if he can’t free himself from what he left behind?

In the heart of the Adirondacks, Isabelle lives in the shadow of a dark family secret whose silent burden strips her family of emotional warmth and faith in God. Tyler belongs to the religious sect called The Faithful, which Isabelle’s father dislikes immensely. Yet, because Tyler belongs to this group, Isabelle sees only a man devoted to his family and faith.

She wants it; she gets it; they marry.

And when the truth comes out, Isabelle faces two choices: Staying could endanger her child.
Leaving could cost her life.



Buy on  Amazon
Barnes and Noble

Take advantage of the special price of $9.99 for the print version on Amazon and .99 cents for the Kindle.

Author Bio:
Elaine Stock is the author of Always With You, which released in January 2016 and has made the Kindle bestseller list. Her novels fuse family drama and psychological suspense. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Women’s Fiction Writers Association, and contributes to the international “Happy Sis Magazine.” In addition to Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads, she hangs out on her active blog, Everyone’s Story, dedicated to uplifting and encouraging all readers through the power of story and hope.

Connect with Elaine on her

Website/blog Everyone' Story
Twitter
Facebook
Goodreads

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Two Winners This Week!



The winner of Love, Lies and Fireflies is Lisa!

The winner of Frosting and Flurries is Sonja!

Congratulations! Happy Reading!


Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Looking Out the Window: Jan Elder Discusses Her Books, Love, Lies and Fireflies and Frosting and Flurries. Gives Away Two e-Books




A Warm Welcome to Jan Elder

Jan will give away two kindle books—the first a kindle copy of Love, Lies, and Fireflies. The second, a kindle copy of the five-book set, Frosting and Flurries, where the readers will find her book, Moostletoe.

What a treat. Here's Janice Bittner’s Chocolate MOOSTLETOE Cake.  In Moostletoe, the owner of the local coffee shop is a baker. There is a celebration in each of the five books, complete with a very special cake.

CRUST:

3 cups finely crushed chocolate graham crackers
¾ tsp. espresso powder
1 stick butter, melted

FILLING:

3 cups chocolate chips
2 tbsp. butter
2 eggs
4 egg yolks
2 cups heavy cream
1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. espresso powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1 package (10 ounces) peanut butter chips

Mix the crushed crumbs and the espresso powder. Add the melted butter and mix well. Press into the bottom of a 9” or 10” springform pan. Chill until ready.

Beat the eggs and the egg yolks, and set aside.

Melt the chocolate chips and butter in a medium saucepan. Slowly add the egg mixture in 3-4 additions, whisking well after each addition. Transfer to a large bowl to cool slightly.
With and electric mixer, beat the cream until soft peaks form. Add the confectioners’ sugar, espresso powder and vanilla, and beat until stiff peaks form.

Stir about 1/3 of the whipped cream into the cooled chocolate, mixing well.

Gently fold in another 1/3 of the whipped cream. Gently fold in the last 1/3 of the whipped cream until as few streaks remain as possible without deflating the mousse.

Fold in the peanut butter chips.

Pour mousse onto the crust. Freeze until ready to eat. Thaw for about 1 hour before serving.

Yum! Thank you for sharing that delicious recipe with us!





About Mooseltoe, Jan's selection in the Frosting and Flurries boxed set

Fresh out of divinity school, Rev. Samantha Evans is ready to conquer the world for Christ. She lands in Moose Creek, Maine, a tiny backwater town with more moose per square mile than men. Even worse, one of her new parishioners chews up new ministers for breakfast, and he’s hell-bent on sending her packing.

Forest ranger Eric Palmer is done with women. Determined to live simply with no encumbrances, he’s moved to Northern Maine to study the moose population. With Christmas right around the corner, he runs into his buddy, Sammie, the girl who’d been his best friend when they were teenagers. Unlike most of the women in his life, he trusts her implicitly. But could she ever be more than a friend?

When Samantha’s career is on the line, Eric must save her job and rescue his own shattered heart in the process. But how does Matilda the town moose factor in?

Now, tell us a little about yourself.

I am privileged to come from a family of writers. My mother, brother, and sister are all published authors. Seven years ago, when I slammed into age 50, I guess I was feeling a little left behind. I decided it was high time to dive into my own writing career and I started a novel in earnest. My mom just turned 93 and she’s knee-deep in creating another book so I figure I have another several decades (I hope) of writing ahead of me. Yippee!

Were you an avid reader as a child? What did you read?

I’ve always been a reader. My favorite books growing up in elementary school were A Wrinkle in Time, The Island of the Blue Dolphins, and The Chronicles of Narnia. I’m also a night person. I loved summertime when I could stay up until all hours of the night reading. I’m sure my mom tried to get me to bed at a “normal” time, but after a while she gave up. No point. I’m still up until at least 2:00 a.m. enjoying a good book and my best time to write is after the sun goes down.

Tell us about your latest full-length novel, Love, Lies and Firelies.

Didi O’Brien is engaged—at least she was an hour ago. Now she’s not so sure. Her fiancé, the suave Kevin Cabot, has just revealed that he’s been unfaithful, and he’s not the least bit sorry. Reeling from the betrayal, with her plans for a happily-ever-after life in doubt, she prays for direction. The answer comes as a complete surprise. God has someone better in mind.

Middle school teacher, Jake Montgomery, is struggling with some issues of his own. Sadly, a year previously his fiancée had been killed in a car crash. Battling anger and despair, in a mountain-top experience, Jake wrestles with the Almighty, and is ready to live again. In his youth, he’d felt an unmistakable call to the ministry but, like the prophet Jonah, since then, he’s been running hard in the wrong direction.

Through a crisis of faith, and glimpses of mercy, Didi and Jake find each other. But can they find the strength to resolve the many obstacles that conspire to keep them apart?

In three words describe your style of writing.

By the seat of my pants.

Oops. Sorry. That’s twice the number of words you were looking for, but you get the point. When I write, I’m as surprised as the reader as to what happens. I just keep going until we get there.

How do you get to know your characters?

In Love, Lies and Fireflies, I gave my main characters a personality test (Myers-Briggs) and then I designed some of the responses from there. What would that type of person do in a particular situation? How would they react? And then what would he/she do next?

What would you be doing if you weren’t writing? 

Actually, I’m doing it. Not only do I get to write, I’m also a Christian life coach. I get to talk to people about their gifts and talents and explore who God made them to be. Talk about a great job! We all have something special to do in this world and I help people find out what that is.



What are you working on right now?

My newest book just released on November 1, 2016. It’s in a “boxed set” on Amazon of contemporary Christian novellas called Frosting and Flurries. This is the first time I’ve been privileged to be in a compilation with four other stellar authors, and I’m proud to say that I’m the newbie in the bunch. (I have four books out…and they have…lots.)  Kind of nice to ride on everyone else’s coattails so I hope it’s a success. The other authors are Kimberly Rae Jordan, Cecelia Dowdy, Clare Revell, and Marion Ueckermann. Lots of fun! Right now I’m working on the second book in the series, Moosed Opportunities.

Buy Frosting and Flurries On Amazon






An excerpt from Jan's novel, Love, Lies, and Fireflies 

While Love, Lies, and Fireflies is basically a romance, there are some decidedly suspenseful elements. When I was half-way through the book, the bad guy, Kevin Cabot, a.k.a. The Cad, demanded his own voice. I found it intriguing to get into the head of a villain. Below happens to be HIS favorite excerpt:

Leaving the side streets, Didi made a quick left, a hard right, and a headlong dash toward the woods at the edge of town. Now that she’d gone this far, there was no turning back. She veered left down Deer Hollow Road. She had no other option.

She hoped with all her heart Kevin wouldn’t risk getting his precious car dinged and defiled on the steep, slick gravel road, but to her dismay, he followed ever closer. A jagged streak of lightning strobed through the sky, and Didi glimpsed his grinning face in the mirror. The man Didi had once thought she loved was enjoying the chase.

She was going way too fast, but she didn’t have a choice. Didi hit the gas and sped on. Sliding down the steep hill, she steered the car as if her life depended on it, slamming into ruts, dips, and potholes. She narrowly missed the ditch on the right side of the road, swerved around the ancient oak on the left, and kept moving.

As she rounded the next curve in the road, she lost control of the car and sideswiped a giant walnut tree, crumpling the driver’s side door. Still, she kept going. For a split second, the Italian job seemed to slow, but it was only an illusion. Instead, at the end of the bend, Kevin was right on her bumper, inching closer, closer, closer. He flashed his lights and honked his horn as if this were all a joke. Keeping up the pressure, Kevin sped up and slowed down, teasing her, thrusting and lunging, fencing with her but never quite hitting her. Frightened out of her mind, Didi punched the gas pedal, the car nearly flying over a rise. On the other side of the hill, the old compact car slipped down the incline, slithering straight toward the swollen stream.

Didi shrieked in terror. The one-lane bridge was out. She had nowhere to go but down.

“Lord Jesus, help me!” She stamped hard on the brake. The little red car spun on its wheels, wet rocks skittering beneath her as she continued her relentless rollercoaster ride toward the creek.

Buy Love, Lies and Fireflies On Amazon

Bio: 

Jan Elder is an inspirational romance writer with a passion for telling stories other women can relate to on a deep level. She strives to write the kind of book that will strengthen the reader’s faith, introducing the reader to a loving and forgiving Lord who walks beside us in our daily lives, while also providing an entertaining and engrossing love story.

Happily married for thirteen years to loving (and supportive) husband, Steve, the two live in central Maryland along with Jamie (a chubby black and white tuxedo cat), and Shu-Shu (a willowy tortoiseshell cat). On the weekends, Jan and Steve comb the nearby countryside in search of the perfect ice cream flavor.

Visit Jan's Author Page on Amazon

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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Looking Out the Window: Great New Releases from American Christian Fiction Writers' Authors


November 2016 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.


Biblical:

Slender Reeds: Jochebed's Hope by Texie Susan Gregory -- In a deadly race to save her son, a young slave woman dares defy the most powerful man in the world. (Biblical from Barbour Publishing)


Contemporary Romance:


Crazy Woman Christmas by Renee Blare -- A quiet cowboy whisks Bianca to his ranch to ride out the Christmas blizzard where she discovers life is cold but also beautiful in the “Cowboy” state. (Contemporary Romance from Inspired [Prism Book Group])

Other Than a Halo by Valerie Comer -- Even though she’s a new woman in Christ, single mom Bren Haddock was no angel as a teen. Now managing the Hiller Farm for a CSA, life is good until a friend offers to enter her daughter into the Little Miss Snowflake Pageant. Old insecurities flare when she meets the intriguing head of marketing the pageant. Rob Santoro isn’t so sure about handling the pageant portfolio until he meets Bren. Soon he’s fallen for her and her two kids. When a Thanksgiving adventure goes awry, he’s left wondering how to love a woman who refuses to be loved. What will it take for Bren to retire her tarnished halo and move into the future God has for her? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Do You Know What I Know? by Becky Melby -- What if a phone call from the obstetrician’s office went to the wrong person? Elizabeth Schmidt can’t figure out why her husband doesn’t seem excited about the news she’s sure he heard. Is he unhappy? Or is James cheating on her? Pastor Jay Davidson is in shock. Bethany Schmidt, the woman he’s in love with, is pregnant. Should he walk away, or is God asking him to play the part of Joseph in real life and not just in the church Christmas program? Bethany can’t figure out why Jay is acting so weird. Has he figured out one of the two secrets she’s keeping until after Christmas? Can a ponytailed itinerant carpenter with a pet chicken help unravel the confusion? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

How to Charm a Beekeeper's Heart by Candice Sue Patterson -- Weddings are the last thing beekeeper Huck Anderson wants to be associated with, considering his past. So when he inherits a building occupied by a bridal boutique, he aims to evict the failing business and open a sporting goods store. That is until his tenant ends up being Arianne Winters, a woman he’s indebted to from a mistake made years ago. When a life-threatening injury derails Huck entirely, Arianne offers to aid in his lengthy recovery if he’ll allow her to remain in his building. But nursing her adversary proves challenging when her adolescent crush resurfaces. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])

A Portrait of Emily Price by Katherine Reay -- After a whirlwind romance and marriage, Emily Price returns home to Italy with her new husband and learns that life at its richest is only found when she accepts its chaotic beauty. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing [Thomas Nelson and Zondervan])


Contemporary Women's Fiction:

Forgiveness by Marianne Evans -- Country music bad boy, Chase Bradington is on the comeback trail. Fresh from rehab for alcohol addiction and transformed by the power of Christ, Chase is battling to rediscover the music he loves and a career he nearly ruined. Then he meets up-and-comer, Pyper Brock and instantly sparks ignite. Despite her rampant attraction to the handsome and talented icon, Pyper knows of Chase’s reputation and soundly dismisses his romantic overtures. No way will Pyper repeat the mistake of trusting a man whose done battle with the bottle. Can a sin-damaged past be released in favor of forgiveness? (Women’s Fiction from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])



Historical:

Beneath a Golden Veil by Melanie Dobson -- As elegant as the Sacramento residence she operates, Isabelle Labrie keeps her past concealed, like the treasure she hides under the Golden Hotel. Then, unexpected guests—fugitive slaves seeking safe passage to the North—force her to confront her past and reconsider her path. (Historical from Waterfall Press)

Forest Child by Heather Day Gilbert -- Historically based on the Icelandic Sagas, Forest Child brings the memorable, conflicted persona of Freydis Eiriksdottir to life. (Historical from Elk Lake Publishing Inc.)

The Lost Generation by Erica Marie Hogan -- On August 5th 1914, the world changed forever. For John and Beth Young, it meant the happiness they finally achieved was snatched out from under them. For Emma Cote, it meant that her husband Jared would do his duty, despite her feelings. For Christy Simmons it meant an uncertain future with the boy she loved. The lives of six people, spread across the British Empire to America were changed forever. (Historical from Elk Lake Publishing Inc.)


Historical Romance:

The Blue Ribbon Brides Collection by Jennifer AlLee, Angela Breidenbach, Darlene Franklin, Cynthia Hickey, Carrie Fancett Pagels, Amber Stockton, Niki Turner, Gina Welborn, and Becca Whitham -- Meet nine men and women whose competitive goals take them to state and county fairs between 1889 and 1930. From baking pie to polishing pigs, from sculpting butter to stitching quilts, everyone has something to prove to themselves and their communities. But in going for the blue ribbon, will nine women miss the greatest prize of all—the devoted heart of a godly man? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Left at the Altar by Margaret Brownley -- In the wild and untamed West, time is set by the local jeweler...but Two-Time Texas has two: two feuding jewelers and two wildly conflicting time zones. Meg Lockwood's marriage was supposed to unite the families and finally bring peace until she's left at the altar by her no-good fiancé. Hired to defend the groom against a breach of promise lawsuit, Grant Garrison quickly realizes that the only thing worse than small-town trouble is falling for the jilted bride. But there's something about Meg's sweet smile and determined grit that draws him in...even as the whole crazy town seems set on keeping them apart. (Historical Romance from Sourcebooks)

Mail Order Mommy by Christine Johnson -- Nursing a broken heart, Amanda Porter had answered a frontier mail-order bride ad placed by Garrett Decker's children—only to find the groom-to-be didn't want a wife. But his adorable children are determined she'll be their mother by Christmas… His wife's betrayal and tragic death demolished Garrett's life. Now he can't even look at another woman, let alone marry Amanda, who resembles his first love. But with his daughter convinced Amanda is the perfect mother, will Garrett realize she's also his perfect match? (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Hope's Design by Dawn Kinzer -- An independent city girl aspiring to be a fashion designer falls for a stubborn artist from the country who wants to keep his talent a secret. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)

Brides of Wyoming by S. Dionne Moore -- Roam the Wyoming range alongside three couples who meet under danger from bands of outlaws. Renee escapes a gang of outlaws and lands in the arms of a sheepherder. Olivia’s sleuthing upturns secrets key to solving the murder of a reluctant rancher’s father. Maira is trying to keep her ranch running alone when a drifting cowboy offers a hand. Can love develop where suspicion and greed roam the range? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

The Negotiated Marriage by Christina Rich -- When the railroad pushes to buy her land, orphaned Cameron Sims will do anything to keep the only home she and her sisters have ever known. Even if she must marry a stranger. Duncan Murray doesn’t want a wife. He wants Sims Creek, a sanctuary that can help him forget a troubled childhood. But his reluctant, and captivating, bride-to-be is key to making his dreams a reality. And despite their business arrangement, Camy and Duncan might be signing on the dotted line for true love… (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Love in the Seams by Jodie Wolfe -- A little girl on a quest for a new mama has the local seamstress in her sights. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)


Romantic Suspense:

His Perfect Love by Sharon K. Connell -- On the run from a hit man, Patricia Campbell is unaware of the FBI’s search for her to learn what information she might hold, so she continues to hide out. Then she meets a persistent computer technician, a charming philanthropist, and a handsome, wealthy businessman who wants to marry her. But her fears resurface, and she wonders if she can trust any of them. Can she survive long enough to find peace…and perfect love? (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Counter Point by Marji Laine -- Her dad's gone, her diner's closing, and her car's in the lake. Cat McPherson has nothing left to lose ... except her life. And a madman, bent on revenge, is determined to take that, as well. Her former boyfriend, Ray Alexander, returns as a hero from his foreign mission, bringing back souvenirs in the form of death-threats. When several attempts are made on Cat’s life, she must find a way to trust Ray, the man who broke her heart. (Romantic Suspense from Write Integrity Press)


Speculative:

The Flaming Sword by Heather L.L. FitzGerald -- When evil joins forces in the Tethered World, Sadie Larcen must risk all to protect the Flaming Sword and her family...even if it takes her life. (Speculative Young Adult from Mountain Brook Ink)


Saturday, October 29, 2016

The Winner of 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir or Mississippi Nights


Winner's Choice for 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir or Mississippi Nights Is...

Drum roll...

Congratulations, Linda Weaver Clarke!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Looking Out the Window: D.M. Webb Discusses Her Books, 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir and Mississippi Nights and Shares A Devotional. Offers a Winner's Choice Giveaway






             A Warm Welcome to D.M. Webb

D.M. will give away an e-book of either 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir OR Mississippi Nights. To enter to win leave a comment and an e-mail address below.





Yeats and Christ
By
D.M. Webb (Daphne Self)

One of the most beautiful poems I have ever read was "Cloths of Heaven" by W.B. Yeats. A portion of it reads: “But, I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.”

In my devotional 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir, I talked about how we all have dreams and sometimes it was only our dreams that kept us company. Every once in a while we offer dreams to someone and we lay them down at their feet. Our wish is for them to tread carefully on these dreams we offer.

Have you ever offered a piece of yourself, lain it at the feet of someone, and wondered if it would be accepted? Have you ever looked into a person’s eyes, wished for him or her to see your heart, and wondered if it would be accepted? Have you ever listened to your own heart, felt what it said, and wondered if you could accept it?

Life can parallel the teaching of Jesus. He laid His life down for us. He offered His love for us. He placed His dreams before us. We must tread carefully because we tread on His dreams. When we trust in Him, we are accepted, and it is our dreams at His feet. And Jesus treads carefully on our dreams.

“And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold, I, and the children which God hath given me.” Hebrews 2:13

Thanks for sharing with us. Lots of writers enjoyed reading as children. Did you? If so, what did you read?

I was a really big reader as a child. I think the first book that I can remember clearly was The Black Hole, based on the Disney movie during that time. I was in 2nd grade and every chance I had, especially after I finished my work, I would read that book, never mind that I knew it word for word. Later on it became whatever I could get my hands on and what my parents could afford. From Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew to Anne of Green Gables. My favorite during one summer was Eight Cousins and The Prisoner of Zelda. Eventually I graduated to Sweet Valley High then own to the more mature books: Heart of Darkness, A Farewell to Arms, etc.

Let's talk about your writing. Many wonder what makes authors write. Why do you write?

I write because I can’t stop. I started writing at an early age. My first poem was written when I was 6 and titled "Cats." I would think to myself whenever I read a book or watched a movie, “what if”, and that began the framework of creating stories to tell my cousins.

Tell us about your latest book.

My last book published was a devotional, 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir. It was a compilation of blog posts that I had written journaling three years of my life as a widow and single mother who eventually married a family friend. It showcased the ups and downs, and all the storms in between, and how I held on to my faith no matter how small it became.

What inspired you to write this particular book?

Pain. Out of the pain of hopelessness and despair I could still a light at the end, but never knew how I was going to get there. We barely had food some days, struggled to pay bills, and I found myself crying out to God so many times. And one day I realized I wasn’t alone. There were others out there like me: mothers who struggled to provide for their children. People who lost their spouses, went through a divorce, and/or raising children on their own. I wanted to give them hope, too, because it was Christ who gave me hope and led me through my toughest storms. I couldn’t remain silent. I had to share and had to hope that my little book would help another in some way, form, or fashion.

What do you love about this book? 

My favorite part would be my reference to Mark 4:39 and the chapter where I put it all into perspective. But the ultimate favorites are the two stories at the end. My mother told these stories time and time again to me and I passed them on to my readers.

What do you hope readers will tell others?

That it’s an honest book about a woman who was open about her faith and how Jesus remained in the center of all she experienced.

Where do you get ideas for your books?

I could tell, but I really don’t know. For me, I look at a bird or a tree, and idea forms. I read a sentence or hear a story, an idea forms. Things seem to pop into my head. For my first book, Mississippi Nights, it was the idea of a firefighter and what would happen if he allowed a sin to rule his life? After that, it just starting growing and building until I could barely keep up with the words in my head. For my second novel, which I am in process of finishing, it was the idea of what would happen if two people, a believer and an unbeliever, came across information that threatened their lives and the people around them? What would happen if he was a paramedic and she was a reporter?

In three words describe your style of writing.

Emotional. Realistic. Hopeful.

What themes do you write about?

I find myself writing on a variety of themes: addiction, abortion, loneliness, pride, family, and sacrifice….there are so many it seems and sometimes the theme are intertwined with another. Basically, I write about faith and real life problems.

Do you have to juggle writing with a job, family responsibilities or other obligations? How do you balance it?

I can’t set a writing schedule because it never seems to pan out the way I want it. I grab whatever time I can get because I home school my 15 year old son, babysit my 2 year old nephew, and between all that I’m cleaning house, preparing food, and dealing with bills, new job, and just general life things. To balance it all, I go with the flow. There are times when I can type up 3500 words and then sometimes I can only jot down a few ideas or phrases for the book.

Does your faith affect your writing? How?

Faith affects my writing always. I will not use cursing/cussing in my books, but I will elude to the language to show the reality of a person. I will not have any graphic scenes. I don’t want that image in my head and refuse to be a stumbling block to my readers. In all I write, I want people to see Jesus. I want to glorify His name by showing redemption in His love.

Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?

Just keep writing. Don’t pay attention to the market, but keep an eye on the market.  Your story should be the best that you can write. Don’t worry about what others are doing or how well they are doing. Your time will come. Even us published authors have a hard time. We aren’t guaranteed publication, but we keep on writing. And a major point: make friends with authors, from the well-known to the lesser known. Some of those friendships will stick for a long time to come.

What would you be doing if you weren’t writing?

I would be painting. And probably pursuing my dream of opening a bookstore. I have always loved bookstores. I mean, who doesn’t, right?

About D. M.'s Books


Mississippi Nights (2012-Ambassador International)

Two brothers, one death--the bond of brotherhood faces its greatest challenge against resentment and guilt.

Together brothers, David and Jeremy Boyette, must decide if the bond of brotherhood is stronger than their resentment and hate as David faces his dark secret and the bitterness that enslaves him.

Can the love between the two brothers eventually win against pain and guilt?




Buy Mississippi Nights On Amazon



30 Days: A Devotional Memoir (2013-Ambassador International)

Do you desire to no longer be alone? Do you yearn for understanding and hope? Do you wish for a closer walk with Jesus?

When a relationship ends, whether through divorce or death, it leaves us with heartache and sadness. Fear of loneliness overwhelms our soul. Anger at God consumes us. We are suddenly thrust into unknown territory, lost and bewildered. Psalm 147:3 He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds.

30 Days: A Devotional Memoir brings you deeply moving stories to strengthen your walk and bring you closer to Christ. Author D. M. Webb shares her three year spiritual journey with a collection of thirty devotions designed to reach out and uplift those who have endured the turbulent emotions that come with divorce, widowhood, and single parenting. Reach out, place your hand in His, and begin your journey today.



Buy 30 Days: A Devotional Memoir On Amazon

Put book trailers in here - check bio information

Bio:

D.M. Webb (Daphne Self) resides in Hawkeye and Indians territory a.k.a. Marion, Iowa. A transplant from Mississippi who fell in love with the Midwest state, she spends her days writing, biking, antiquing, and planning adventures with her husband and sons.

Having always dreamed of being a writer she pursues this dream with only one goal in mind: To Glorify His Name.  D.M. not only writes, but she's an avid reader who devours books in many genres. Catch some of her latest reviews here. Beyond her writing and reading, she also volunteers as a judge for the Genesis Contest and Carols Awards through American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). She recently received the Radiqx Press Certification of Excellence award for Christian Religious Romance.

Learn more about D.M. on her website

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Looking Out the Window: Wonderful New October Releases by American Christian Fiction Writers Authors






October 2016 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.


Biblical Fiction:

Providence: Hannah's Journey by Barbara M. Britton -- When the prophet of Israel refuses to heal her, Hannah flees Jerusalem and is captured by an enemy with a curse all his own. (Biblical from Harbourlight [Pelican])

Shadow of the Storm by Connilyn Cossette -- In defiance of her mother, Shira pursues her heart's calling to become an apprentice midwife. When a delivery goes horribly wrong, Shira finds herself bound to a man who betrayed her, the caretaker of three young children, and the target of a vengeful woman whose husband was killed by Shira's people, the Levites. As contention between the Hebrew tribes and the foreigners fans the flames of another dangerous rebellion, Shira will come face-to-face with the heartbreak of her past that she has kept hidden for so long. How can she let go of all that has defined her to accept the love she's denied herself and embrace who she truly is? (Biblical from Bethany House [Baker])


Christmas Novella:

Christmas Lights by Chautona Havig, Vikki Kestell, Cathe Swanson, and April Hayman -- From historical romance to contemporary cozy mysteries and Christmas wonder, these four "light" reads will warm your heart and ignite your Christmas spirit! (Christmas Novella, Mixed Genres, Independently Published)


Contemporary Romance:

Risking Love by Brenda S. Anderson -- Can cautious bank employee Lissa Morgan risk falling in love with a former thrill-seeker, a widowed single dad, when she may have to foreclose on his house? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

A Mom for Christmas by Lorraine Beatty -- Noah's dream of a happy family and Beth's dream of a continuing ballet career are both dashed, but when they come together they discover that the Lord might have a new dream for both of them. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Sleigh Bells Ring by Sandra D. Bricker, Barbara J. Scott, Lynette Sowell, and Lenora Worth -- Santa Claus is coming to town, and so are the Tucker sisters. The girls have inherited their father's run-down horse farm for Christmas. It needs some serious TLC in order to make it sell-ready. Joanna knows that by recruiting her sisters and one handsome ranch hand they can fix up the place and even celebrate one last Christmas while they're at it. However, to Isabella, returning to their home in Kentucky bluegrass country for Christmas seems like an impossible hurdle. Can her Chicago boyfriend make life merry and bright again? One thing's for sure: nothing is peace on earth for Sophia as a new beau brings up old wounds. And when the fate of the horse farm is put in jeopardy because Amy accidentally fraternizes with the enemy, tensions rise. But it's not like the land developer stole Christmas . . . just her heart. Can the Tucker sisters have themselves a merry little Christmas? (Contemporary Romance from Gilead Publishing)

Do You Hear What I Hear? by Margaret Brownley -- Stranded at the old Star Inn until the road back to his cabin reopens, lumber mill owner Rick Talbot suddenly comes face to face with the past. The only woman he's ever loved is standing in front of the inn's blazing fire trying to get warm. Both Rick and Sally regret what happened between them years ago, but his family lumberyard clashes with her tree-hugging ways and neither is willing to try again. It will take the storm of the century, one stage-struck young boy, a certain meddling "angel"--and even a cranky cat--to convince them that in matters of the heart, sometimes the second time around is best. (Contemporary Romance from St. Martin Press)

More Than a Tiara by Valerie Comer -- Marisa Hiller abandoned her modeling career to nurse a broken heart in Montana, far from the photographer who ruined everything. Her family farm is now part of a CSA program teaching gardening and cooking to single moms, but when the coordinator begs her to represent the program in the Miss Snowflake Pageant, Marisa balks. God has forgiven Jase Mackie but hasn't answered his prayer to bring Marisa back into his life… until Jase finds himself out West as the official photographer for a beauty pageant, face to face with the woman he's never forgotten. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Room at the Inn for Christmas by Mary Connealy -- Ambitious hotel executive Amanda Star's has got her sights set on the CEO job at the multi-national Halston hotel chain. But then she inherits the Star Inn, a place her father had always wanted her to run alongside him. With no time to be away from her job, she rushes home to put the inn up for sale. Once there, she's struggles against keen regret, sweet memories, and the longing to return, which grows stronger when she is reunited with an old classmate: Anthony Carter, a handyman with a guarded heart. (Contemporary Romance from St. Martin Press)

Can't Help Falling by Kara Isaac -- A funny, heartfelt romance about how an antique shop, a wardrobe, and a mysterious tea cup bring two C.S. Lewis fans together in a snowy and picturesque Oxford, England. (Contemporary Romance from Howard [Simon & Schuster])

A Christmas Homecoming by Kimberly Rose Johnson -- Interior design assistant Bailey Calderwood suspects the mysterious admirer sending her cards and flowers is none other than the son of her unpleasable, bed-ridden boss. When Stephen Belafonte's mom demands he fire Bailey, can he find a way to heal the rift in his family as well his own heart, or will he be forced to let Bailey go? (Contemporary Romance from Mountain Brook Ink)

Where Two Hearts Meet by Liz Johnson -- When Caden Holt's boss asks her to show off their own beautiful Prince Edward Island to impress a visiting travel writer and save the Red Door Inn, the reclusive executive chef is forced to face a world much bigger than her kitchen--and a man who makes her wish she was beautiful. (Contemporary Romance from Revell [A Division of Baker Publishing Group])

Trust My Heart by Carol J. Post -- Grant McAllister, a jaded big-city lawyer and small-town reporter Jami Carlisle have no hope for finding true love--except for a zany old matchmaker who won't give up. In the unspoiled beauty of the Smoky Mountains, there's healing and forgiveness to be found. And for Grant, this unplanned detour may be just what's needed to finally guide him home. (Contemporary Romance from Waterfall Press)

Insight by Deborah Raney -- She's having a baby. It's a blessing that brings comfort to newly widowed Olivia Cline. Yet with no insurance, no job and precious little money, how will Olivia care for herself and her child? The answer is a handsome and brooding artist seeking an assistant. Reed Vincent has recently regained his eyesight thanks to a donor. And through his eyes, Olivia begins to see all the possibilities before her. Before them. Until, in a flash of insight, she knows why his signature is so hauntingly familiar. (Contemporary Romance from Raney Day Press)

Silver Bells by Deborah Raney -- As Elvis croons from the radio and Christmas descends upon a small Kansas town, two people find the miracle of love. (Contemporary Romance from Raney Day Press)

A Family Under the Christmas Tree by Terri Reed -- In this heartwarming tale set during the Christmas season, a single father and a fashion photographer are brought together by a young boy and a mischievous Bernese mountain dog--but first they must learn to set aside their differences if they are willing to let their relationship bloom. (Contemporary Romance from Howard [Simon & Schuster])

Third Strand of the Cord by Catherine Richmond -- Caroline will do anything to keep her ex-husband from putting her son with Down syndrome in an institution--even enroll the boy in a class taught by a know-it-all karate instructor. Lee Marivaux is an expert at reading people. He knows his feisty new student will thrive with firm guidance - and he's right. He pegs the boy's mother as a clueless socialite who loafs at the country club - and he's never been so wrong. When Caroline's abusive ex shows up, demanding custody, Lee and Caroline must join forces to keep the boy safe. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Buying Love by Toni Shiloh -- Impatient for marriage, Nina Warrenton places an ad in the newspaper for a husband--attaching a monetary reward. But when she begins to fall for the small-town chef who answers her add, she realizes how much she wants him to love her and not her money. Dwight Williams needs fast cash to save the family restaurant, but can he let it go to prove his love for Nina? (Contemporary Romance from Celebrate Lit)

Moonlight Over Manahttan by Carrie Turansky -- Professional organizer Sarah Montgomery is hired to organize her elderly neighbor's cluttered apartment by Justin Latimer, her neighbor's grandson. Sarah believes free-spirited Justin is a lazy, unemployed poet who is taking advantage of his grandmother's generosity. Though attracted to him, she guards her heart against her growing feelings. As Sarah and Justin work together to help his grandmother and enjoy Christmas events in NYC, romantic sparks fly. When Sarah discovers who Justin really is, she must decide if she will continue to hide behind her protective wall or open her heart and embrace love. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Love Bears All Things by Beth Wiseman -- Charlotte Dolinsky needs time to recover after breaking up with her boyfriend, Ryan. But when a surprise visitor shows up on her doorstep in Texas, she's forced to put aside her own worries to help her Amish friends in Lancaster County. Daniel Byler struggles each day in his Amish community to heal from his fiancée's betrayal. When he discovers that a member of his family is in danger of being shunned, his pain turns to fear. His only way to help is by partnering with Charlotte, a woman he barely knows who has already deceived them all before. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)


General Contemporary (includes Women's Fiction):

Paint The Storm by Dawn V. Cahill -- When Meg is challenged to love her lesbian daughter as Christ would, she struggles to live out God's command, and when her daughter goes missing, she finds herself joined with the unlikeliest of allies in her search for Linzee, and finally learns of God's unconditional grace for sinners. (Contemporary Women's Fiction from Spring Mountain Publishing)


Restoration Road by Elise Phillips -- Mallory Andrews's short trip back to Texas for her mother's funeral quickly becomes a move home to help her grieving father with his contracting business. When her old crush, Tres, hires them for a restoration project Mallory falls in love with the crumbling old house. And when feelings bloom between her and Tres, she finds herself on the road to a brand new, unexpected life filled with faith, sweet tea, and fresh paint. (General Contemporary from Desert Breeze Publishing)

Above All Things by Deborah Raney -- Expecting their first baby, Judd and Evette McGlin are thrilled to become parents. But the couple faces the ultimate test when Judd learns he already has a child: a six-year-old mixed-race girl born amid secrets and lies. Now, Evette must decide if she can accept the child. She thought she was open-minded--until hidden prejudices threaten the future of an innocent little girl, Evette's marriage and the very notion of who she thinks she is. (Contemporary Women's Fiction from Raney Day Press)

Restoring Christmas by Cynthia Ruchti -- Alexis set out to restore a fieldstone farmhouse in need of repair. She didn't expect to restore a life in the process. (General Contemporary from Worthy Inspired)

Strings of Faith by Terry Stafford -- Darcy is a classically trained violinist who dreams of playing bluegrass and winning The National Oldtime Fiddle Contest in Weiser, Idaho. When tragedy strikes, Darcy lays her gift aside for her family and faces unimaginable pain and loss, leading to dissension with her husband, disappointing judgment from her church, and anger with God Himself. Can her gift of music survive when her life is turned upside down? (General Contemporary, Independently Published)

Historical:


The Lost Generation by Erica Marie Hogan -- On August 5th 1914, the world changed forever. For John and Beth Young, it meant the happiness they finally achieved was snatched out from under them. For Emma Cote, it meant that her husband Jared would do his duty, despite her feelings. For Christy Simmons it meant an uncertain future with the boy she loved. The lives of six people, spread across the British Empire to America were changed forever. (Historical from Elk Lake Publishing Inc.)

Aboard Providence by Keely Brooke Keith -- When an accident forces Jonah Ashton to serve as a ship's physician, he boards the Providence with the plan to escort a group of families to their new settlement in South America and then return to Pennsylvania to finish medical school before rumors of Southern rebellion erupt into all-out war. What he doesn't count on is getting lost at sea... and Marian Foster. When the settlers finally reach land, Jonah makes a startling discovery that changes everything, but will it change his heart? (Historical from Crossriver Media Group)


Historical Romance:

The Rails to Love Romance Collection by Diana Lesire Brandmeyer, Amanda Cabot, Lisa Carter, Ramona K. Cecil, Lynn A. Coleman, Susanne Dietze, Kim Vogel Sawyer, Connie Stevens, and Liz Tolsma -- Journey the Transcontinental Railroad along with nine unlikely couples who encounter all the dangers and disappointments of traveling the rails in the late 1800s. From sight-seeing excursions to transports toward new lives, from orphan trains to circus trains, can romances develop into blazing love in a world of cold, hard steel? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Cowboy Christmas Homecoming by Mary Connealy, Ruth Logan Herne, Julie Lessman, and Anna Schmidt -- For widow June Harper, another cold front is about to hit. Most call him Hugh. She'd call him Scrooge, except as the man ensures her needs are met, June can't help but wonder how to meet the needs of his heart. Netty Lewis can take care of herself, has for a while now. And even if Roy, her hired help for the holidays, does take care of her, that doesn't mean he cares for her or that he'll stay past Christmas. Pastor Colton McCabe is not sure he'll make it through the holidays with his new housekeeper. Grace can't seem to do anything right but love. Perhaps being a homekeeper will earn her a permanent residence in his heart. Connie Lancaster is determined to return to St. Louis, and no cowboy can change her mind. But if Isaac can change her heart, maybe Connie will see the homecoming she's been longing for isn't to a place but a person. (Historical Romance from Gilead Publishing)

The Captive Heart by Michelle Griep -- Stranded in a strange land, Eleanor Morgan faces starvation or marriage . . . but who wants to marry a murderer? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

The Rightful Heir by Angel Moore -- Cowboy Jared Ivy must work with stranger Mary Lou Ellison until a judge comes to town and determines which one of them is the rightful heir to his family's Texas newspaper. Intrepid reporter Mary Lou won't lose the Pine Haven Record--the legacy he left her--without a fight. But when she and Jared stop sparring long enough to investigate a story together, they become a force to be reckoned with. Will they let their battle over the Record get in the way of something even more newsworthy: true love? (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Christmas at Stoney Creek by Martha Rogers -- When newspaper reporter Tom Whiteman befriends a homeless man named Joe, Tom decides to bring him home to Stoney Creek, Texas for Christmas. As Tom and his childhood friend Faith Delmont set out to learn the truth about the mysterious old man with the kind, sad eyes, they discover that God's love can turn tragedy and loss to triumph, and that true love comes to those who wait. (Historical Romance from Realms [Charisma Media])


Mystery:

Another Day, Another Dali by Sandra Orchard -- In order to regain her grandmother's favor FBI Special Agent Serena Jones agrees to investigate a missing Salvador Dali painting. But when the evidence points to members of the owner's own household, it becomes clear that Serena won't be winning any popularity contests. Then Serena stumbles upon links to her grandfather's unsolved murder. (Mystery from Revell [A Division of Baker Publishing Group])



Romantic Suspense:

Tangled Webs by Irene Hannon -- After a disastrous Middle East mission ends his six-year Army Ranger career, Finn McGregor needs some downtime in the woods. But when someone threatens his neighbor, publishing executive Dana Lewis, Finn and Dana must work together to discover who wants her to leave her lakeside cabin before it costs both their lives. (Romantic Suspense from Revell [A Division of Baker Publishing Group])

Identity Unknown by Terri Reed -- When a John Doe washes up on the shores of Calico Bay, no one knows who he is—including him. But one thing's instantly clear to deputy sheriff Audrey Martin: the man's marked for murder. And she's the only one who can protect him from the assassins who lurk at every turn. The arrival of a team of men claiming he's Canadian Border Services officer Nathanial Longhorn only further complicates the matter. As his memories slowly start drifting back, Nathanial and Audrey work to uncover who wants him dead and why. If they don't, this Christmas might be their last. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Speculative:

A Time to Rise by Nadine Brandes -- What more can you sacrifice than your life? Parvin Blackwater is dead. At least that's what the Council and the world thinks. But her sacrifice tore down part of the Wall long enough to stir up hope and rebellion in the people. Parvin and Solomon must uncover the mysterious clues that Jude left behind in order to destroy the projected Wall once and for all. Meanwhile, the Council schemes to new levels of technology in its attempts to keep the people contained. Can a one-handed Radical and a scarred ex-Enforcer really bring shalom to the world? (Speculative Young Adult from Enclave Publishing)

Unblemished by Sara Ella -- Eliyana can't bear to look at her own reflection. But what if that were only one Reflection—one world? What if another world exists where her blemish could become her strength? (Speculative Young Adult from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

Beast by Chawna Schroeder -- For as long as Beast can remember, she has lived among her master's dogs. With them she sleeps. With them she eats. With them she fights and struggles to survive. But through hunger and cold she dreams of one day becoming her master's favorite, earning bones with meat and a place beside the fire. When her pack scatters after a surprise raid, Beast must defend herself against slavers, hunting down the loners. They are so strong, and she is only a beast . . . or is she? (Speculative Allegory from Enclave Publishing)

Accelerant by Ronie Kendig -- He'll destroy the world. But he must save it first. As the only able-bodied heir to the Fire Throne, Haegan, Prince of Seultrie must return to the Nine Kingdoms and fight for his people. But there are insidious forces at work. When reality itself falls into question, Haegan struggles to know where to fight, who to trust. Caught between duty to his country and duty to the world, Haegan must see clearly enough to choose the right path to save his devastated world. (Speculative High Fantasy from Enclave Publishing)


Thriller/Suspense:

Death in the Mind's Eye by Rick Acker -- It knows what you're thinking. It knows when you're lying. Does it know how to kill? San Francisco attorney Mike Webster and Dr. Johanna Anderson, a brilliant and beautiful psychologist, must clear Jo's name of a malpractice case before the controversial, technologically-assisted Mind's Eye therapy is seized by a shadowy finance firm and used as a weapon. (Thriller/Suspense from Waterfall Press)

The Warrior's Seal by Ronie Kendig -- A Special Forces team is thrust into a war with the past to save the president after an artifact unleashes a deadly toxin. Special Forces operative Cole "Tox" Russell and his team are tasked in a search-and-rescue--the U.S. president has been kidnapped during a goodwill tour. The mission nosedives when an ancient biblical artifact and a deadly toxin wipe out villages. Tox must stop the terrorists and the toxin to save the president. This is a free e-novella prequel! (Thriller/Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])

Deadly Infiltration by W. Richard Lawrence -- Infiltrators inside the American government are betraying undercover agents while helping sneak weapons of mass destruction across our borders. To keep their work hidden, they are willing to murder anyone who gets in their way. Sara, a brilliant computer expert working for the FBI, finds herself caught in the middle. Sara's young faith in God is gravely tested when she is framed for the murder of an FBI agent, forcing her to go into hiding. Meanwhile, Sara's fiancé Derry lives up to a promise he made to her, and gives up his future to save her and hopefully the country. (Thriller/Suspense from Boarding House Publishing)

Western Historical:

Refining Fire by Carol Cox -- Meet the Arizona Territory Brides. Four strong, independent women--each determined to stand on her own two feet, and not one of them looking for romance. But sometimes love shows up when you least expect it... (Western, Pioneer/Prairie, Independently Published)