Friday, December 02, 2016

BETTER LATTE THAN NEVER - Yvonne Lehman - One Free Book

Welcome back, Yvonne. What would you like for our readers to know about you personally?
I didn’t know, nor aspire to being, a writer. In my early thirties, while teaching a Sunday school class of girls age 17-married, I wanted us to show brotherly-love to young Black girls, but the church (pastor, deacon except one) was against it. After six months of questioning, disappointment in those who had mentored me in the Christian life, I was faced with leaving the church or turning it all over to God (I’m a little slow sometime!). I rededicated my life, saw the ad in Decision Magazine about the Billy Graham School of Christian Writing, began to realize I wrote down things all the time—the wonderful, the not-so-good, questionings, thoughts, re-wrote the SS lessons … the result became a whole new unexpected world opening up to me. God closed the minds of that church to lead me into writing! Later, the church helped the Black community build their own church, which is what they wanted. The moral of MY story is: when God closes a door that seems right, maybe he’s just leading you into something even better. Don’t complain, just continue the journey.

Tell us about your family.
Sorry … don’t want to be sued. I do have a white and blond Pomeranian named Rigel. Named him after a Titanic survivor dog since my Pom is a rescued dog.

After my siblings and I were grown up and had homes of our own, my parents had Poms. We loved them. Have you written other nonfiction books?
I’ve written 57 novels, the most popular being Hearts that Survive—A Novel of the Titanic, which I frequently sign at the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. A compilation of articles, Why? Titanic Moments will be released in March 2017. I’ve compiled articles for Writing Right to Success, 25 writers’ journeys and craft information. Also have compiled seven non-fiction books in the Divine Moments series.

Do you have any other books in the works right now?
I continue accepting articles for the Moments series. Currently receiving articles for (1) Merry Christmas Moments 2017, (2) Coola-nary Moments, culinary mishaps or interesting cooking moments and recipes, (3) Personal Titanic Moments, stories of grandeur and/or disaster and lessons learned, (4) Questionable Moments, what you felt God/Jesus asked and your response such as “Where are you?” “Do you love me?” “Do you believe?” “Do you want to be healed?” “Why are you crying?” “Where is your faith?” “What do you want?” etc. etc. Also, I’m contracted for one novella, working on another, and thinking about a novel.

What kinds of hobbies and leisure activities do you enjoy?
Holidays with family, shopping, eating popcorn, and watching TV at 8:00 p.m., reading.

Why did you write the featured book?
Barbour announced they were starting a line for cozies. I’d written a lot of books for them so thought I’d try this. Their line closed but I then had in mind a series. The story is set in Black Mountain where I live. I wrote some of it in a coffee shop which is the primary setting of the book. Some readers who know me say the sleuth is like … me. The book is published by Forget Me Not Romances (Winged Publications).

I’m reading Better Latte Than Never right now, and loving it. What do you want the reader to take away from the book?
Enjoyment. Although somebody is murdered, it’s otherwise a light, fun, easy-read, trying to decide who dunnit. The sleuth displays her faith (belief and doubts) in her actions and thoughts. Her devotional reading is the book of Job and she begins to think she might be a modern-day Job. There’s no particular “lesson” but the reader gets the picture of how various characters/people live their lives and what they believe.

Is there anything else you’d like to tell my readers about you or your book?
I founded and directed the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference for 25 years and for the past nine years have directed the Blue Ridge “Autumn in the Mountains” Novelist Retreat held annually in October at Ridgecrest Conference Center, North Carolina. Register by the end of February and get $75 discount on registration fee.

Please tell us about the book.
Back cover blurb: Sixty-two-year-old GraceAnn McKinney owns The Daily Grind, a coffee shop in the mountains of western North Carolina, but she is better known as Little Piney Cove’s obituary writer. All she wants to do that fateful morning is ask Tom Smalley, the editor of Little Piney Times newspaper, one simple life-changing question.

However, before she can ask Tom the question, Mayor Upton Downs falls to the floor of The Daily Grind. A series of complex events follows that could result in either GraceAnn, her niece Ivy – or both – facing a murder charge. In her orange Volkswagen, named FIDO, her acronym for Forget-It-and-Drive-On, GraceAnn determines to find the truth. For directionally-challenged GraceAnn, truth is often easier to find than her intended destination.

Where on the Internet can the readers find you?
I have a website and am in the slow process of adding to it: www.yvonnelehman.com. I blog once a month on Novel Rocket, and on ChristiansRead.

Thank you, Yvonne, for sharing this cozy mystery with us. I know my readers will love it as much as I do.

Readers, here’s a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.
Better Latte Than Never (A GraceAnn McKinney Mystery Book 1)

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

PURSUING GOLD - Cynthia L Simmons - One Free Book

Welcome, Cynthia. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
I usually pick a person to style my characters after, but I do tend to describe my own feelings, especially in the main character.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Ventriloquism. As a high school girl, I presented a lot to groups of younger kids.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I’ve always been a wordy person, but I didn’t discover I could write. I chose to work at learning the craft, which was a lot of work. When I started, I told real stories because I wasn’t even sure what made up a story.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I love mysteries and suspense. I read them to relax and shut out the world. However, I also enjoy a nicely layered story like Cynthia Ruchti’s novels. Apologetics is also one of my favorite things to read.

Cynthia’s first novel really grabbed me, and I’ve read the rest as well. One of my favorite authors. How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
Quiet time with the Lord works best. I turn off all technology and just pray.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
In Pursuing Gold, I wanted old-fashioned Southern names, so I chose those that would fit the time. A few people in the story actually lived, so I didn’t have to choose names.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
I’m truly proud of the research behind my first novel, Pursuing Gold.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I would be a cat. I love being comfortable, and I can relate to a cat fluffing their pillows and blankets.

What is your favorite food?
Ice Cream. I could eat it in freezing weather.

Since losing weight, I don’t eat it as often, but I could eat ice cream in any weather. What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
I tend to be so focused on the story that I don’t describe much. Editors would ask me about where the scene took place. I started visualizing before writing so I could describe.

Tell us about the featured book.
Peter and Mary Beth must keep their Confederate bank alive in the Civil War. They must discover who forged Peter’s signature to counterfeit money before it causes the bank to fail.

Please give us the first page of the book.
April 12, 1862
Chattanooga, Tennessee
What a dilemma! Peter Chandler glared at Mr. Shaw, the burly Confederate bureaucrat lecturing him. Shaw could easily snap someone’s neck, and in his role, the man posed a real danger. After Peter had seen the Confederate government sell Negroes like cattle, he had to turn them down. “I’m sorry. C and R Bank will not loan money to the Confederacy.”

Lifting one massive eyebrow reflecting his opinion of Peter’s idiocy, he slapped a sheaf of letters on the desk, and growled, “These refusals you sent me place you in danger. We want to know where your loyalties lie. When the war is over, you will be glad you sided with us.”

Peter had to think fast. “We are a small bank fully invested in the community, so we cannot shoulder the risk of another loan.”

The man’s dark eyes flared. “You are far too hasty. I might have to speak to my Nashville friends about your bank charter.”

Nashville? The Union holds the city now. You won’t get anywhere talking to them.”

“My friends still have the reins of power. Let me enlighten you—”

Peter tuned out the rest of the speech. If Shaw knew the right people, he could attempt to get the bank charter revoked. If he succeeded, Peter would lose the bank.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
If you use my middle initial, I’m easy to find. Cynthia L Simmons. I’m named after my father, C.L. Thomas.

My website is www.clsimmons.com.
Twitter: @CynthiaLSimmons

My radio show, Heart of the Matter, is on my website and also on Soundcloud.

Thank you, Cynthia, for sharing this book with us. One of my novels is about a shipment of gold that disappeared after the Civil War, so your book interests me.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Pursuing Gold: A Novel of the Civil War - paperback
Pursuing Gold: A Novel of the Civil War - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

THE AMISH PRINCESS - Patrick E Craig - One Free Book

Bio: Best-selling author Patrick E. Craig is a lifelong writer and musician who left a successful songwriting and performance career in the music industry to follow Christ in 1984. In 2011, he signed a three-book deal with Harvest House Publishers to publish his Apple Creek Dreams series. His current series is The Paradise Chronicles and the first book in the series, The Amish Heiress, was published by P and J Publishing in August of 2015 and remained on the Amazon bestseller lists for seven months. The second book in the series, The Amish Princess, will be released in December. Patrick and his wife Judy make their home in Idaho and are the parents of two adult children and have five grandchildren.

Welcome, Patrick. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I was actually challenged by an editor at a major publishing house to send him a one-sheet. He wanted an Amish story or a quilting story, so I sent him the idea for A Quilt For Jenna, and they bought the story. And that's what launched me on my journey as one of about six men writing Amish fiction.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
The day I married my wife Judy was the happiest day of my life.

How has being published changed your life?
I always wanted to write books. I spent many years as a professional musician writing songs. Then after I came to the Lord I went into the ministry and became a teaching pastor, but my dream was always to write fiction. When I got my first book published it gave me a reason to focus my life and my energy on writing and so that is now the main thing I do.

What are you reading right now?
I've been reading a lot of Louis L'Amour books. I had never read them before but when I discovered that the man had sold millions of adventure stories I decided I should check him out. A bookstore in our town was going out of business and we found about fifty Louis L'Amour books for fifty cents each. So I have read through the Sackett series and about fifteen of his other books.

I read Louis L’Amour books when I was growing up. Loved them. What is your current work in progress?
Now that The Amish Princess is finished, I am moving on to the last book in The Paradise Chronicles series. It's titled The Mennonite Queen and it's set in the sixteenth century in Germany. It's the story of a Polish princess who runs away with her Mennonite stable boy but eventually has to choose between him and saving her country.

What would be your dream vacation?
My wife and I would love to visit New Zealand, especially after we saw the Lord of the Rings movies which were all set in that beautiful country.

Visiting New Zealand and then Australia is on my Bucket List. How do you choose your settings for each book?
When I first started writing an Amish Quilting story, I researched the places where there were a lot of Amish Quilters. I discovered a town in Ohio, Dalton, that had the biggest quilting fair in the country. As I looked at Dalton on the map, I discovered a small village named Apple Creek about ten miles away. I decided that would be a perfect setting for a series and so the Apple Creek Dreams series was born. In that series, one of the characters ended up finding long lost relatives in Paradise, Pennsylvania, and so that became the focus of my next series, The Paradise Chronicles. The setting for The Amish Princess was born out of my love for several of Zane Grey's books, which were set in the Ohio wilderness in the revolutionary war period.

Another of my favorite authors when I was growing up was Zane Grey. If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
I'd love to sit with Dr. Ben Carson and just talk to him about the next several years in this country under a new, conservative administration. I am hoping that Dr. Carson will have a lot of influence in the new government.                   

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Fishing, music, traveling in our trailer.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
My most difficult obstacle is staying focused on a specific writing goal each week. My mind tends to wander so I need to really kick myself to keep up with writing every day. So I get up around 5:30 every morning. I sit at the kitchen table in a straight-backed chair and drink a big cup of coffee.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?
The most important thing a new writer can do is learn your craft. Go to conferences, get books on writing and study them, read authors you like, and authors that have been recognized as good writers. Then listen to the Lord for the story He wants you to tell and then write it. Don't worry about getting published, just write. Then when opportunity knocks answer the door.

Tell us about the featured book, The Amish Princess.
Opahtuhwe, the White Deer, is the beautiful daughter of Wingenund, the most powerful chief of the Delaware tribe. She is revered by her people–a true Indian princess. Everything changes when the murderous Delaware renegade known as Scar brings three Amish prisoners to the Delaware camp. Jonathan and Joshua Hershberger are twin brothers that Scar has determined to adopt and teach the Indian way. The third prisoner is Jonas Hershberger, their father, who has been made a slave because he would not defend his family. White Deer is drawn to Jonathan but his hatred of the Indians makes him push her away. Joshua's gentle heart and steadfast refusal to abandon the Amish faith lead White Deer to a life-changing decision and rejection by her people. In the end, White Deer must choose between the ways of her people and her new-found faith. And complicating it all is her love for the man who can only hate her.

Please give us the first page of the book.
The smell of death was everywhere in the steerage area of the schooner Charming Nancy. Jonas Hershberger gagged at the stench as he made his way up from the hold. He could not stand being below decks one minute more—seeing the white, tear-stained faces of grieving fathers and mothers and hearing the moans of the dying. He passed by Bishchopp Kauffman on his way forward. The once-energetic leader of their flock now sat silently, staring at the shroud-wrapped body of his youngest child. The bishchopp looked up at him and shook his head. He whispered something to Jonas.
                       
Jonas leaned closer. "What, Bishchopp?"
                       
The man took hold of Jonas' arm with a painful grip. "He let loose on them his fierce anger, wrath, indignation, and distress, a company of destroying angels."
                       
Jonas pulled his arm away and stood staring at the man for a moment, and then he turned and blindly groped his way to the ladder that led upwards toward the fresh air and escape from the horror below.
                       
The Amish people on board the ship had not expected such trials when they left Lomersheim near Wurtemburg that spring. Indeed, the Hershberger family and those who traveled with them had been full of joy as they prepared to depart. After the Palatinate and nearby areas had been repeatedly invaded by the French, the Anabaptists living there had struggled with the devastation and famine that followed, as well as the constant threat of religious persecution. When the man who represented William Penn came to their village and told glowing tales of Pennsylvania—the rich farmland, the mighty forests, the rivers teeming with fish, the abundance of game and most of all, the freedom from tyranny and death at the hands of other Christians, Jonas' father, Mathias, had leapt at the chance to emigrate.
                       
So the Hershbergers set out on their journey with others from their village. In the spring of 1737, they journeyed to Rotterdam and there they joined a group of Amish people who were to board the Charming Nancy and set sail for the new world. But trouble found them before they even started. On the twenty-eighth of June while they were still in Rotterdam getting ready to set out, Bishchopp Kauffman’s daughter, Zernbli, died. On the twenty-ninth, the ship went under sail but enjoyed only one and a half days of favorable wind. Then on the seventh day of July, early in the morning, the Zimmerman’s son-in-law died. The travelers landed at Plymouth, England, on the eighth of July. During the nine days the ship remained in port, five more children died.
                       
And so it went. As the endless days on the gray-green sea crept by, the list grew longer. Lisbetli Kaufmann died, followed swiftly by four more. On the first of August another of the Bischopp’s children, Hansli, died, then five more children died. On the twenty-eighth, Hans Gasi’s wife died. During the voyage of eighty-three days, one in nine of the passengers succumbed and the Charming Nancy became a death-ship. Jonas had watched his father and mother work themselves into exhaustion nursing the sick and praying for deliverance. And now, at last they were coming to Pennsylvania.

Jonas climbed up the last steps of the ladder and staggered onto the deck. The ship was slowly making its way against the current. He felt the fresh wind that was moving them upstream and smelled the fields that lay on both sides of the great river. His hair whipped in the chill breeze but he did not want to go below deck again, not ever. It was so good to see land again. He closed his eyes and breathed deeply. Then he opened them and began to look more closely at the shoreline. As the ship rounded a promontory, he saw a small figure on the bank. It looked like an Indian boy with a basket slung over his shoulder. He wore a breechclout and leggings that covered his nakedness. The boy stood silently, staring at Jonas as the ship passed. Jonas waved to him but the boy did not wave back or make any sign. Then the boy turned and disappeared into the tall grass lining the shore.

How can readers find you on the Internet?

Where can readers purchase my books?
http://tinyurl.com/n6sfagg Amazon

Thank you, Patrick, for sharing this new book with us. I've not read any historical Amish books.

Readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:

Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Monday, November 28, 2016

DO YOU KNOW WHAT I KNOW? - Becky Melby - A Book Giveaway, Print in US, Ebook Foreign

Welcome, Becky. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
My husband claims all of my heroines are part me and friends have said they can “hear” me in my character’s dialogue. I certainly use my own experiences, hopes, joys, and struggles to create characters, but I don’t intentionally shape them to be like me. Usually, I end up wanting to be more like them.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Maybe starting a writing career on a whim. My friend Cathy Wienke called one morning back in the early nineties and said she’d just literally thrown a book at the wall because of its unrealistic dialogue and predictable plot. “We should write our own,” she said. And so we did. We started plotting that very moment and nine months later gave birth to Beauty for Ashes.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
When I was seven, my dad used to bring small pads of paper home from work, and I would turn them sideways and pretend they were my books. One of the first stories I wrote was “How Valentine’s Day Started.” I remember drawing stick figures with hearts around them—I was a romance writer way back then! In high school, I wrote angst-filled poetry and then moved on to short stories for Sunday School take-home papers. My dream was to publish my first book by the time I was twenty-five. I missed it by about seventeen years. Beauty for Ashes came out the year I found out I was going to be a grandmother.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
Ninety percent of the fiction I read is Romance or Women’s Fiction. I love dual-time novels—I’ve always enjoyed comparing life in the past to how we live today. I like humor—whatever happened to chick lit? At the moment, I’m in the middle of four books—an audio dual-time novel I listen to in the car, a Christmas novella on Kindle, and another dual-time in print, plus an inspirational nonfiction book. I love biographies but haven’t carved out time to read one lately. 

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I’ve had to say no to some really wonderful opportunities to serve. Years ago, I thought I could do it all—lots of volunteering while homeschooling four sons and writing. The pace was exhausting. To this day, I wonder if my kids look back at their childhoods and all they remember is Mom yelling, “Hurry up!” It took seeing writing as a ministry to allow myself to step back. And I’ve also come to realize that time with my grandchildren is doing the thing God put in front of me in this season. I can’t do it all, but I pray I can bring some Truth to light for my readers and my grandkids.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
I chose the first name of the hero in the story I’m working on right now from my Facebook Friends list. That’s a great source. And then I had fun telling my friend I was naming a character after him. Most often, I use baby name sites. I look up names according to birth year or ethnicity. Cemetery records are great for finding surnames in a specific locale and era.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
My four sons. My boys are amazing husbands and dads. I love watching them interact with their kids and nothing warms my heart like seeing how tender each one is with his wife. They are all extremely creative in unique ways—art, business, home projects. I give God all the glory for their character, but I’ll take a bit of cred for the creativity. Moms, let your kids make messes—it’s how they learn. Then teach them how to clean up!

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I’d probably be my favorite dog, a golden retriever. I like the simple things in life—good food, a walk, napping in the sun. I see myself as a faithful, loyal friend who’s pretty easy-going (though my hubby would disagree at times, especially if I’m on a deadline). I want people to feel comfortable and at home in my “territory,” but insult or threaten my people in any way and I’ll bare my teeth!

What is your favorite food?
Cheesecake Factory Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake. Not on a daily basis, of course. Then again . . . I’m gluten intolerant, and this decadent dessert with layers of flourless chocolate cake, ganache, and mousse is gluten free. If only they could make it guilt free, but at 860 calories per slice, that’s not going to happen!

When I had a slice of that, I took ¾ of it home, then had dessert for almost a week. There is no way I could eat the whole slice. What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
I still struggle with being too nice to my characters. That’s the gift of mercy gone awry. One of the best pieces of writing advice I ever received was, “Love your readers enough to make your characters hurt.” Readers want reality, and real life is messy and painful. Sometimes I have to go back and add more pain and conflict because, in the end, the dénouement is sweeter when we have cried and wrung our hands right along with the characters.

I’m a lot like that, too, but this year, I’ve really poured on the terrible external conflict for my heroines. Tell us about the featured book.
A week before Christmas, a phone call from the obstetrician’s office goes to the wrong person, igniting a yule-log-size blaze of misunderstandings for two couples. Elizabeth Schmidt is hurt, Bethany Schmidt is confused, and Pastor Jay Davidson is wondering if God is asking him to play the part of Joseph in real life and not just in the church Christmas program.  

The spark for this story came from a real life event. When I found out I was pregnant with our first child, the bill from the clinic went to my husband’s aunt and uncle, whose daughter was also Becky Melby. The poor girl was only fifteen at the time! We’ve had a lot of laughs about it over the years and when I asked my husband to brainstorm with me for a Christmas novella, he brought this up and we took off with “what ifs” that resulted in Do You Know What I Know? It’s a light read with touches of humor, but it also deals with some serious subjects like adoption, infertility, and learning to trust God with your future.

Please give us the first page of the book.
“I can’t go to rehearsal. I can’t look at him.” Crumpled letter clutched to her chest, Bethany Schmidt paced from the bottlebrush Christmas tree in one corner of the church office to the door and back. Worn oak boards creaked beneath her striped-stockinged feet. Misty, her pink-haired friend, sat on the floor, painting her toenails and doing a fairly good job of stifling laughter.

Bethany waved the letter. “How can I be Mary to his Joseph with this on my mind? He’ll see it in my eyes. My deceit, my betrayal. I feel like a prisoner.” Forearm pressed to forehead, she sighed. “A prisoner of the heart.”

“Wow.” Misty Kowalski stopped stifling. “This is rare, even for you. Forgive me if I’m not as empathetic as you’d like. You know I love you, but as a pathetically single midwife living at a maternity home with a leaky roof and linoleum floors, it’s hard for me to feel bad that you have to choose between the career of your dreams and a guy who’s crazy about you.” She picked at a smudge of purple. “If it’s advice you want, knock down those prison bars, girlfriend! Ditch the job and go with the guy. How many men are going to look twice at a thirty-something single mom church secretary? This might be your last chance.”

Bethany crumpled the letter and threw it at Misty. “But what if it’s not a chance at all? We’ve only had two dates.”

“Pastor Jay’s been swooning over you since the day you moved back. And I have never used swooning in a sentence before, I promise. That’s how sure I am he’s nuts over you.” Misty tightened the cap on the bottle of polish. “Why not just lay it all out? ‘Hey, dude, I’ve got this great job offer in the Show Me State, so show me you love me or I’m outa here.’ See? Easy peasy.”

“Are you kidding?” She pictured the man with the thick dark hair that curled above his ears, the brown eyes that made her melt like butter on pancakes. “You know him. He’ll say he wants me to chase my dreams, follow my calling. But what if he’s my calling?”

I like this already. Actually, I received my copy over the weekend, and I’m starting to read it today. How can readers find you on the Internet?
http://www.beckymelby.com/ -- Please sign up to join my Second Chance Circle and receive a free short story.

Thank you, Lena. It’s a great honor to spend time with your readers.

I’m thrilled to have you, Becky, and I know my readers will enjoy your book as much as I will.

Readers, here’s a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.
Do You Know What I Know?

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book - print in US, ebook foreign. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Friday, November 25, 2016

An After-Thanksgiving Suggestion - AUTUMN LOVE Novella Collection - One Giveaway Copy of One of Lena Nelson Dooley's Back List Books

Did you have a wonderful Thanksgiving? I'm glad if you did.

Are you a Black Friday shopper? You're probably tired if you are.

Here's a wonderful way to relax by enjoying a collection of Thanksgiving novellas.


The subtitle of this collection tells it all: Five Novellas of Finding Love in the Heart of Thanksgiving. Brought to you by some of the authors of Warm Mulled Kisses and April Fool's Love, here are blurbs of the stories:

Lena Nelson Dooley
DIY THANKSGIVINg LOVE - A misunderstanding brought Austin Hodges and Valerie Bradford together. The same misunderstanding eventually pushed them apart. Can a church youth campout help them to see each other through the eyes of truth?


Lisa Crane
THANK HEAVEN FOR LITTLE GIRLS - Charley Jane Roberts is a tomboy through and through. Jake Waters is a bit of a ladies man. They’re also best friends, and Jake is Charley’s boss. Unfortunately, Charley is also in love with Jake. He, however, sees her still as the tag-along little sister of his friend and one of the guys. One minor accident at work changes everything. But will the two of them figure everything out, in spite of meddling friends and misunderstandings?


Anne Greene
RECIPE FOR A HUSBAND - Maine Nessie McDonald, daughter of a recently deceased lighthouse keeper seeks a husband by Thanksgiving to share the responsibility of warning sailors off the rugged Maine coast. She advertises for a husband and cooks gourmet dinners for each would-be husband’s interview. Kyle Cameron, the injured seaman she rescues from the sea, won’t do because he must return to Australia and his father’s shipping business. Yet Kyle, lying on a cot in the kitchen with a broken leg, points out each aspiring husband’s unsuitability by reading aloud from Nessie’s heirloom cookbook’s spiritual advice. When Kyle must return home, Nessie realizes too late she’s fallen in love with the spiritual Australian. But Kyle surprises her by cooking up a recipe of his own.


Kathy Wall
NEVER AGAIN - Wounded by a woman’s dishonesty, Tanner Phillips vows never to trust women ever again. When he meets Rusti Moore, he recognizes a person in emotional pain carrying a heavy burden.

Her open honesty impresses him. Can he overcome his personal injuries to help her heal? Does he have the insight to support her without damaging her? Will helping her destroy him?


Marilyn Eudaly
TURKEY TROT - Radio personality Trudy Moore fears Thanksgiving will mark the end of her relationship with the “Big Boss of the Hot Sauce,” Gunnar Stone.

Gunnar pushes for them to spend Thanksgiving with his family in Connecticut. Trudy’s parents invite them to Arkansas. She may have to work the Turkey Trot Marathon in Dallas, Texas. Gunnar develops two very different plans to solve their holiday dilemma. One involves trotting around the country. The other he keeps secret from the woman he hopes to make his wife.


The miles and the rungs on the corporate ladder challenge their love as they do a Turkey Trot to find happy forever after.


And this group of authors will be bringing another novella collection in 2017.

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

THE REMNANT - Monte Wolverton - One Free Book

BIO: Monte Wolverton is an author, illustrator, and syndicated editorial cartoonist. His 2014 novel, Chasing 120, won an Illumination book award. He serves on the boards of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists and Plain Truth Ministries, where he is also as associate editor and contributing writer. His work has appeared frequently in MAD magazine and more recently in Washington (DC) Monthly magazine. He participated in the 2014 St.-Just-le-Martel Editorial Cartoon Festival in France, and in 2015, was invited to serve as a judge for the prestigious Xaimen International Animation Festival in China. He is an ordained minister and holds an MA from Goddard College in Vermont. Wolverton resides in his native southwest Washington State with his wife Kaye.

Welcome, Monte. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
The central character in my first novel, Chasing 120, was somewhat autobiographical—a media professional and family man facing the collapse of his belief system and possibly his job. Grant Cochrin, the main character in the The Remnant—there’s perhaps less of me in him, but I’m still there.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Quirky, you say? My wife would say that with me it’s less of a single event and more of an ongoing thing. I’d like to believe that most of my quirkiness is relegated to my art. But in terms of behavior (not counting high school and college), there was the time a couple of years ago when I was at an international cartoonists’ convention in Saint-Just-le-Martel, France. I was asked to sing a solo of the “Star Spangled Banner”—and chose to do so in the style of Bob Dylan. They seemed to like it, judging from the applause.

When did you first discover you were a writer?
My father was a writer/illustrator/cartoonist, so I had that excellent role model. In high school, I discovered that I really enjoyed writing, thanks to a wonderful English teacher, Trecia Greene. But I didn’t do much professionally with writing until decades later. In my graphic design business, I wrote a lot of advertising copy. Years later, I wrote articles for the magazine where I was design director. And about that time my MA program required a lot of writing, including a hefty thesis. After that, I became managing editor and spent most of my time pushing words around. But my first novel was published only three years ago, so what do I know?

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I have always loved science fiction, as my father wrote and drew sci-fi stories for comic books from the 1930s through the 1950s. I have enjoyed Heinlein, Asimov, Lovecraft, and C.S. Lewis. I also like carefully researched historical fiction like Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth and World Without End and Bernard Cornwell’s Saxon stories. My favorite author however remains Stephen King, especially his Dark Tower series, both for his style and subject matter. Yet when I look back at the books I’ve read, there seems to be more non-fiction—science, politics, biographies of creative people.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I’m past the traditional retirement age, but I haven’t noticed a decrease in work and busy-ness. I have a studio out in the woods where I work nearly every day. And every day, if it’s not raining too hard, I take my two Rat Terriers up the hill and sit on a rock. It’s a great place to clear one’s mind, meditate, and pray, and I always discover something new and amazing there in the tangle of trees, ferns, and bushes. As composer John Cage said: “One shouldn’t go to the woods looking for something, but rather to see what is there.”

Sounds wonderful. How do you choose your characters’ names?
I have blatantly used names of friends and relatives, living and dead. That way (if they’re alive) they have to read the novel to see what I’ve done with them. A couple of character names in The Remnant are anagrams of well-known people. Another character I named after a kind of tree, as it was the first thing I noticed through a window when I was trying to come up with a name.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Usually the most recent one, no matter how mundane. For example, I just finished tiling 650 square feet of my studio floor. I think I’m proud of that. Also, I was pleased to serve as the only American judge at the Xaimen Animation Festival in China a couple of years ago. That was educational and cool.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I was fascinated with sloths before they were popularized through movies such as Ice Age. And I appreciate horses. But I identify most with dogs. Our two Rat Terriers are 16 and 18. The oldest is pretty deaf, has cataracts and arthritis, but works around his problems and just keeps going without complaint. He loves his walks, he loves his people, and he is well cared for. I should be so blessed in my latter years.

What is your favorite food?
Grilled wild salmon (or steelhead). And locally sourced sweet potatoes. And a salad with organic lettuce and avocado. With rice vinegar, olive oil, and feta cheese dressing. Accompanied by a Washington State Riesling. And a slice of wild blackberry pie. With organic vanilla ice cream. Followed by a cup of dark roast coffee with cream and turbinado sugar. Well…you asked.

Yum! What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
When you say problem, I take that not to mean challenge, as in the hardest work, but rather a hurdle that I had to surmount. For me, that would be offering visual cues as to what a character is feeling. I tend to try to handle those things in verbal dialogue or narration (is there anything else?). But a big part of human communication is body language. An editor pointed out that I need to show, for example, how a character shows his anger—not merely describe him or her as being angry, or have him or her say angry words. Such a thing is not that hard to write, but you have to keep reminding yourself to imagine how the characters look and what they are doing as they are conversing, and render that image for the reader. That made a big difference.

It took me quite a while to conquer deep point of view, too. Tell us about the featured book.
A future dystopian world is ruled by a totalitarian government that has forbidden religion and destroyed all sacred texts. Those who persist in religion are sent to work camps. A stalwart band of believers escapes from one of these camps and embarks on a spiritual quest through a lawless wilderness filled with violent gangs and bizarre cults—only to come face to face with an unthinkable choice. That description sounds dire, but I poke satirical fun at more than a few religious traditions, including parts of Christendom. I hope readers will be entertained, and gain perspective on the difference between institutional religion and an authentic personal relationship with Christ.

Book blurb:
What if there were an Apocalypse and Jesus didn't return? What if the survivors found themselves living in a world ruled by a totalitarian government, where religion is forbidden and all religious texts have been destroyed? In The Remnant, award-winning author Monte Wolverton tells the tale of a band of concentration camp escapees who trek through the lawless American wilderness on a quest for authentic Christianity, only to come face to face with an unthinkable dilemma. The Remnant is a fast-paced story punctuated with dry satire, memorable characters, and hard questions about religious institutions.

Please give us the first page of the book.
Prologue—date 2063
On the eastern coast of Tunisia, overlooking the Gulf of Hammamet and the Mediterranean Sea, sits the Great Mosque of Monastir, a place of prayer since the 9th century—but no longer. In the year 2062, a cataclysmic global war prompted the World Federation to ban all religion. Now, less than a year later, a high-level meeting was being held here in the mosque, repurposed like many former places or worship as a museum and site for Federation conferences. Ironically, the subject of this particular meeting was religion.

The men and women entering the cavernous hall were clearly familiar with making decisions, issuing orders and receiving respect. Some wore military dress uniforms, others wore dark suits that spoke of power. Chatting and posturing, they seated themselves in black leather chairs flanking a ridiculously long, polished ebony conference table.

In front of each chair was a name card, an agenda, a water glass and a smaller glass, which waiters filled with the attendee’s choice of strong coffee or Tunisian mint tea.

As ushers gently closed the ornate doors from the outside, a middle-aged man with wavy black hair, a blue-grey Italian suit and Mediterranean features called the meeting to order. His deep voice echoed through the hall. “Welcome, every one of you, to the first meeting of the Religious Directive Implementation Council.”

“Let’s hope it will also be the last,” quipped a portly gentleman in a military uniform. The group laughed, until they noticed the glare in the eyes of the chairperson.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
They can visit the Facebook group The Remnant—CWRpress at


Thank you, Monte, for sharing this book with me and my blog readers.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
The Remnant - paperback
The Remnant - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

PEACH BLOSSOM RANCHER - Ada Brownell - Ebook Free Through November 24

Peach Blossom Rancher, an historical romance by Ada Brownell is free today through Nov. 24. Suspense, romance, humor, murder, insanity, hope, fun, wrapped in a Western you won’t forget. If you are reading this before November 25, you get a free ebook.

Welcome, Ada. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Well, I used some experiences I had in my youth, such as when a pig sucked my dress while I poured slop over the top of the fence. I held out my skirt and ran to the house while pig saliva strung down my legs. I took great pleasure in letting that happen to Edwina, a gal who thinks she’s in love with Peach Blossom Rancher’s leading man, John Parks. Edwina has a temper, and it shows. I think the sow sucked my dress because of the corn starch we used in those days.

Also a horse steps on the foot of Stuart, a kid just learning how to ride. That happened to me and my brother who usually helped me mount, etc., already had ridden away. I beat on that horse’s big belly and yelled, “Get off! Get off.” She wouldn’t budge until I had sense enough to reach down and lift her hoof.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Letting my high heel shoe slip off the volume pedal of the organ while I played softly as the pastor spoke. The heel slipped, the shoe stuck, and the music was the loudest it could get before I told myself, “Take your hands off the keys, stupid.” My clunky shoe stuck in the pedal volume slot, and I had to kneel down and pull my shoe out.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
When I went to work as a reporter for The Pueblo Chieftain. I’d read you aren’t a professional writer unless you make a living at it.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I love the Bible and inspirational non-fiction. Historical novels are my favorite fiction books.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
Reading inspirational novels where great characters honor the Lord or come to him, despite adversity, carries me to other places where problems are solved with the help of the Lord and grit. These books stimulate spiritual joy and peace.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
Sometimes I look up ethnic names for a certain era, but often match the name to the character.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Raising five wonderful children and staying married to the man I’ve loved for 63 years.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
Maybe a poodle. I have curly hair, always run from here to there, and sometimes I bark.

What is your favorite food?
It depends on the day. I like variety.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
In one of my writing courses I took in my youth I was told 1,000 novels were rejected to each one sold to a traditional publisher. I didn’t like those odds, but later in life felt I had stories to tell and took the risk.

Tell us about the featured book.
Published by Elk Lake Publishing, a new traditional small publisher. Suspense, romance, humor, murder, insanity, hope, fun, wrapped in a Western you won’t forget.

A handsome young man inherits a ranch in ruin and a brilliant doctor is confined to an insane asylum because of one seizure. Yet their lives intersect.

John Lincoln Parks yearns for a wife to help rebuild the ranch and eyes Valerie MacDougal, a young widow who homesteaded, but also is an attorney.

Will the doctor ever be released from the asylum? Will John marry Valerie or Edwina Jorgenson, the feisty rancher-neighbor he constantly fusses with? This neighbor has a Peeping Tom whose boot prints are like the person’s who dumped a body in John’s barn. Will John even marry, or be hanged for the murder?

As a reporter I covered the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Pueblo, a former asylum, on my beat and I worked on a peach ranch for my aunt and they also had horses.

Please give us the first page of the book.
March 1, 1909
“Come on, boy. Your hard life is over.”

The sleek stallion pulled back, snorted, grunted, yanked his head upward, and tried to whirl away. John Lincoln Parks held the reins tight. “Come on. The judge isn’t here. The whip’s in your past.”

Bringing the animal all the way from Colorado’s Eastern Slope after the judge’s death hadn’t been easy. The judge, John’s uncle, murdered near Yucca Blossom, would never return to the horse ranch and acres of peach orchards he expected to inherit from John’s father.

“He look like he a good ’un to breed.” Sweat glistened on Abe’s crinkled chocolate brow. “But an animal abused like ’im usually disobedient or loses his spirit.”

John rubbed the stallion’s neck and then extended a sugar cube in his hand. “I don’t want to give up on him yet. Come on, boy. We’re friends. You should be tired and hungry after your train trip.”

A long red tongue licked the sugar cube into the toothy mouth.

Abe followed John to the horse barn. “I’ll get ’im some oats and fill the water trough. He a right pretty animal except fa the welts the judge left on ’im.”

“If I’d stayed with the judge, my back would look like his. Where’s Polly? I hope she’s made chicken and noodles and apple pie.”

How can readers find you on the Internet?
Read sample chapters on Amazon. My Amazon author page is https://www.amazon.com/author/adabrownell
Facebook: Ada Brownell
Twitter: @adabrownell

Blog: http://inkfromanearthenvessel.blogspot.com Stick-to-Your-Soul Encouragement

Thank you, Ada, for sharing this new book with us.

Readers, leave a comment to interact with the author. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comments Here’s a link:

Monday, November 21, 2016

OTHER THAN A HALO - Valerie Comer - One Free Book

Welcome back, Valerie. Why did you become an author?
I became an author because God gave me stories to tell, the ability to tell them, and the patience and diligence to study the craft! Over time, I’ve become aware that writing is, for me, an act of worship in which I can create something and offer it back to the One who made me in His Creator image.

If you weren’t an author, what would be your dream job?
I once thought being an architect or interior designer would be the best job in the world.

If you could have lived at another time in history, what would it be and why?
I’m very thankful to live in a day and age where glasses and e-readers are a “thing.” Not so many years ago, people with my eye condition (Best Disease) wouldn’t have had written stories available to them. So I’ll take today and be thankful!

What place in the United States have you not visited that you would like to?
When I see those Facebook memes going around, I’m often astonished to discover I’ve seen more of the USA than many Americans, though I’m Canadian. Someday I’d love to visit the New England states and their counterpart in Canada, the Maritime provinces.

How about a foreign country you hope to visit?
My husband and I are planning a month-long trip to Great Britain in three or four years. That should check a few things off our bucket list!

What lesson has the Lord taught you recently?
When I was writing Other Than a Halo, God reminded me again that He doesn’t categorize sin as greater or lesser. Sin of any size is what keeps us from God, and He can and will forgive all of it if we only ask. This was something my heroine, Bren, struggled with, and it was a blessing to me to revisit that truth in my own life.

Sometimes, we need to go back and revisit how much the Lord has taught us. I love to do that. Tell us about the featured book.
Other Than a Halo is the second book in my Christmas in Montana Romance series.
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 for 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?

Please give us the first page of the book.
“Don’t you think it would be great fun for both girls?”

Bren Haddock stared at the mother of her daughter’s best friend. “Um, no. I pretty much think you’re crazy.”

“What’s crazy about it?” Kristen O’Brien’s brown eyes lit up with excitement. “It’s not competitive like the Miss Snowflake is for adult women. It’s just for fun.”

Bren spun her pottery mug on the table in Helena’s Fire Tower Coffee Shop and raised her eyebrows. “Have you never heard of Crowns for Kids?”

“Of course I have.” Kristen giggled. “Wasn’t that reality—” she air-quoted the word “—show nuts? There was nothing real about it. And this won’t be anything like it.”

Bren had watched several episodes, aghast at what some people would do for fortune and fame. She shook her head. “I can’t believe you want to put Lila and Charlotte through that. No way.”

“Todd and I will gladly pay Lila’s entrance fee and buy her dress—”

“No. I’m not a charity case.”

Kristen’s eyes softened. “I know that, Bren. I know how hard you’ve worked to get on your feet and make a solid home for your kids all on your own. How hard you work every single day. This is something Todd and I want to do. Call it our Christmas gift to Lila. She’ll have a couple of adorable outfits and some happy memories of a perfect Christmas week spent with her bestest friend in the whole world.” Kristen’s voice mimicked Lila’s.

“I don’t see how it can lead to anything good.” Bren met her friend’s eyes across the wooden table. Around them, the lunch crowd drifted out. “I really don’t. I appreciate that you guys have money and run in different circles than we do, but I don’t want to get dragged into this. I don’t want Lila thinking she can have whatever Charlotte has. She needs to learn to be satisfied with what I can provide, not want what other people have.”

You can read the full first chapter here:

I’m eager to read the book. I love your writing. How can readers find you on the Internet?
Please visit me at http://valeriecomer.com where you can find links to social media and information about all my books as well as my blog. You can also join my email list for a free short Christmas story called “Peppermint Kisses.”

Thank you, Valerie, for sharing this book with us. I'm eager to read it. I love your picture. Your dimple is a lot like mine.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Other Than a Halo: A Christian Romance (Christmas in Montana Romance) (Volume 2) - paperback
Other Than a Halo: A Christian Romance (Christmas in Montana Romance Book 2) - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. You must follow these instructions to be in the drawing. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory or country if outside North America. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com