Sunday, April 23, 2017

WINNERS!!!!

Melanie (TX) is the winner of Love at Sunset Lake by Sally Bayless.

Connie (KY) is the winner of Silence in the Heart by Carolyn Aarsen.

Connie (TX) is the winner of Who Killed Bridgitt Holcomb? by Tamera G Cooper.

Akaylee (NE) is the winner of Return to the Misty Shore by Bonnie Leon.

If you won a book and you like it, please consider giving the author the courtesy of writing a review on Goodreads, Amazon.com, Christianbooks.com, Barnes and Noble, or other Internet sites. 

Also, tell your friends about the book ... and this blog. Thank you.

Congratulations
, everyone. If you won a print book, send me your mailing address:
Click the Contact Me link at the top of the blog, and send me an Email.


If you won an ebook, just let me know what email address it should be sent to.

When you contact me, please give the title and author of the book you won, so I won't have to look it up.


Remember, you have 4 weeks to claim your book.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

MAYBE IT'S YOU - Candace Calvert - One Free Book

Welcome back, Candace. God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?
Interestingly, God has me moving in an unexpected direction. For a while now, He has been whispering “be still” as far as my writing is concerned. It has felt as insistent as His initial call to write. After much prayer, I’m now taking time to fill the creative well through other outlets, and spending precious time with my husband and our growing gaggle of grandchildren. Though I’m officially on hiatus, it doesn’t mean stories won’t percolate. They have a way of doing that . . .

Tell us a little about your family.
We are a blended family. When I married my husband, I became Grandma to his three “littles.” In eighteen years (next month), we’ve seen that blessing grow to eight grandchildren and one great grandchild—an age span from first-steps to college graduation! We recently had one of the toddlers for a “sleepover” that, thanks to her playful grandpa, included Donald Duck voice lessons. Papa takes his job seriously.

We have three great grands, aged 2 to almost 10. They are so much fun. Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
Actually, I’d say writing has most changed my habits as a TV/movie viewer; writers are notorious for analyzing plots, characters, and scene structure. Sometimes much to my husband’s chagrin!

James doesn’t like me to tell him what’s coming in a TV show, but I’m almost always right. What are you working on right now?
Though not on deadline, I’m busy marketing my newest release, hosting giveaways, and being a blog guest—always such a delight. I also volunteer in our grand daughters’ elementary school classes as a “Sight Word Buster.” An author helping to grow new readers! How cool is that?

What outside interests do you have?
Folks who follow me on Facebook know I’m a passionate “foodie” and post dozens of dinner photos that often include my orange “Happy Face Spoon.” I’m also an avid gardener, a bird nerd, Fitbit aficionado, and world traveler. We just returned from an Australia and New Zealand cruise where I had the thrill of signing books in Tasmania and hanging out with some new Kiwi friends (readers, writers, editors, reviewers). Plus, I saw for-real Tasmanian Devils AND learned the best way to pet a kangaroo. Fabulous!

I would love a trip like that. How do you choose your settings for each book?
I like to welcome readers to places that have been home for me. The Mercy Hospital series is set in my native northern California, the Grace Medical series in Texas, and my newest series, Crisis Team, brings readers back to California again—beginning with my home town of Sacramento.

If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
Anne Frank has been one of my heroes since childhood; her humor, her hope, her courage inspire me; her great need to express herself on the page is one we share. I had the privilege of visiting Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, the hiding place where she penned her famous diary. The experience brought me to tears, and I came away even more touched by this brave young girl’s beautiful spirit.

What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?
Probably that it’s a challenge to find a balance between Fiction Land and real life, and that it’s very important to take time to fill the creative well.

What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?
A refresher course in being “still” in this too-noisy world; making time to really savor the gifts I’ve been given. And to count my blessings—they are many.

What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
Connect with other writers, especially those farther along the publishing path.
Study craft: via books (read! Fiction and nonfiction), workshops, and online courses.
Attend conferences like ACFW’s annual event. Invaluable.

I’ve missed three ACFW conferences in a row, but I’ll be there this year. I’m really looking forward to connecting with my friends there. Tell us about the featured book.
Maybe It’s You is the exciting third book in my Crisis Team series, a high-adrenaline and high-emotion medical drama with plenty of action, romance, and suspense.

I always love reading your books. Please give us the first page.
“Your relation to the inmate?”

Sloane Ferrell’s stomach tensed. “He’s my stepfather,” she confirmed, lips brushing her cell phone in a whisper. “It was . . . manslaughter.”

She glanced past a grouping of palm trees toward the peach stucco entrance to Los Angeles Hope hospital’s emergency department. Would she ever stop peering over her shoulder—watching her back? This past year it had felt as necessary as breathing and was the biggest part of why she’d left San Diego. New zip code, new living space, new job . . . a paper trail painstakingly shredded. She’d done all that, and thankfully, the last few months had been uneventful. Right now Sloane was simply concerned that a fellow ER nurse would join her at any moment. She’d said something about taking their break together. This return call from California State Prison couldn’t have come at a more awkward—

“We don’t have you listed,” the office assistant announced. Her tone was as friendly as the slam of a cell door. “It had to be arranged in advance and approved.”

“I did that—and I was,” Sloane insisted over the distant whine-hum of saws; preliminary work had begun on the new hospital wing. “I was promised a chance to speak at the parole hearing. My name has to be on the list. Could you check again?”

Here’s a link to the complete Chapter One of Maybe It’s You.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I love connecting with readers! You can find me here:

Thank you, Lena. It’s a joy to visit you here and have this chance to connect with your readers.

And it’s always a pleasure to host you on my blog.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Maybe It's You - Christianbook.com
Maybe It's You (Crisis Team) - Amazon
Maybe It's You (Crisis Team) - 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:

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

ALTO SECRETS - Victoria Kimble - One Free Book

Welcome, Victoria. What has drawn you to writing for children?
I have always wanted to write for children and youth, because I loved to read when I was that age. Those characters became my friends, and I’ve always wanted to created characters that kids think of as their friends too. Also, I know how much children have to learn about life. Story is such a great way to connect with children and communicate with them, and I want to be a part of that.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I like to crochet beard hats. You know, the winter hats with a fake beard attached. They are great here in Colorado in the winter. I also like to crochet toy food. My favorite project was a complete hamburger set, with the toppings and everything.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I started writing when I was very young, The books I read inspired me to write stories that always looked and sounded surprisingly similar to the current series I was reading. It took me until a little over a year ago to gather the courage to begin pursuing a writing career, but writing has always been a part of my life.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I read quite a bit of middle grade and YA fiction, because that is the genre I like to write most. I have small kids at home, so we spend a lot of time in the children’s section of the library, and I pick up books for myself while we’re there. I do enjoy a good Christian thriller and romantic comedy at times.

What other books have you written, whether published or not?
I have written The Choir Girls series in its entirety. Soprano Trouble was released on February 3, 2017, and Alto Secrets was released on April 14, 2017. The final two books in the series, Harmony Blues and Solo Disaster will also be released in 2017.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I know it sounds cliché, but my time with the Lord helps me keep my sanity. I try to read my Bible every day, and I find that it is important to listen to Christian and worship music as I’m out and about. Those constant reminders that Jesus is Lord and He is in control are what help me stay focused.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of, besides family?
Definitely The Choir Girls series. Being a published author is a life-long dream of mine, and I know there are millions out there who are trying for that distinction. I do not take it for granted.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
First you should know that I am a hard-core cat lover. But I think I would pick to be an otter in a zoo. They look like they have so much fun, swimming and playing all day long, while being fed and cared for. I could get used to that.

What is your favorite food?
My favorite that I eat all the time? Currently it is salt and vinegar potato chips. My favorite food that I wish I could eat all the time? A medium rare steak.

Is it hard to break into the children’s market?
Yes, it is hard to break into the children’s market. It’s hard to break into any market, but children’s seems especially challenging because there are not as many agents willing to represent that genre.

What advice would you give to an author wanting to do that?
Keep learning, writing, and submitting. That seems to be the difference between those who make it, and those who don’t. The ones who made it were simply the ones who kept at it.

What would you like to tell us about the featured book?
Alto Secrets is Maddie’s story. She is amazing at volleyball, but has always wanted to try art. She’s afraid to tell her parents because she’s afraid her parents won’t understand. She’s also afraid to tell them because she’s afraid that she won’t be any good at it, so she lies. This story is for all the kids who are worried that their friends and family won’t like them for who they really are.

Books like this are really needed in the world we live in now. How can readers find you on the Internet?
The best places to find me are at my website, www.victoriakimble.com, on my Facebook page, www.facebook.com/victoriakimbleauthor, and on Twitter, @victoriakimble. 

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

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Alto Secrets (The Choir Girls Series) (Volume 2) - Paperback
Alto Secrets (The Choir Girls 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:

Monday, April 17, 2017

A FRAGILE HOPE - Cynthia Ruchti - One Free Book on This Blog, Plus More

Welcome back, Cynthia. As an author, I know it takes a lot of people to birth each book. Who were the people involved in the birthing of this book, and what were their contributions? 
Two women who may never know of their influence on this story stirred my heart and emotions during the research for A Fragile Hope. Their videos are online. I’d be happy to share the links with those who have read the book, if they contact me. To share them before they read A Fragile Hope would give too many spoilers. So all I can say is that their courage and determination in the face of unbelievable odds helped me know hope was possible in the situations Josiah and Karin faced in the story, the outrageous can be true, and what love looks like when it is stretched beyond recognition.

If you teach or speak. What’s coming up on your calendar?
I have several exciting events coming up in the next few months. In fact, it would almost be easier to tell you the days I’ll be home! I’m heading to Little Falls, Minnesota, at the end of April for a women’s afternoon event on the 25th, followed by a library event the next night—the 26th—from 6:30-8:00 in Upsala, Minnesota. They have a great library and librarian who is a big, big fan of Christian fiction. That Saturday, the 29th of April is a multi-author book signing at Bethany Books and Gifts in Baxter, Minnesota. Gabrielle Meyer will join me for that one.

In May, I’m journeying BACK to Minnesota to speak at a book club tea on the 7th, then the Minnesota Christian Writers’ Guild on the 8th. I’m speaking/teaching at the Cedar Falls Writers’ Workshop in early June, then leading worship and serving on faculty at the Write-to-Publish conference on the Wheaton College campus immediately after that. Toward the end of June, I’m serving at CBA’s UNITE gathering in Cincinnati. In July, I breathe. J

Sounds wonderful. If you had to completely start over in another place, where would you move, and why?
Since I live in the heart of Wisconsin, and spring is always slow in coming, I think I would choose someplace warmer with a longer growing season and avocadoes for 42 cents. San Diego is appealing, and it’s within driving distance of my birthplace—Oceanside. However, I would miss lilacs and a white Christmas.

If you could only tell aspiring novelists one thing, what would it be?
My counsel on this subject hasn’t changed a lot, despite the changes in the industry. I strongly advise connecting with ACFW—American Christian Fiction Writers—as one of many means by which to grow in the craft as a novelist. Attend conferences that offer education plus networking plus camaraderie with other writers (ACFW is a great example), and learn how to wait with grace. No matter the publishing path, waiting will always be part of the journey.

You’ve been asked to be in charge of a celebrity cruise. Who would you ask to take part, and why? (AS in what program, singers, etc. [it doesn’t have to be writing related])
Chip and Joanna Gaines (from HGTV’s Fixer Upper) would provide the program, entertainment, and humor. They’d let me talk about spiritual restoration a time or two. My family would use it as a reunion and provide the music. Only Chip and Joanna are celebrities, but it would still be fun.

I love that show and the fact that they’re so open about their faith and love their family. Tell us about the featured book.
A Fragile Hope is a story that asks the question, “Where does a relationship expert turn when his wife leaves him and can’t explain why?” Josiah Chamberlain’s life’s work is threatened by his wife’s unexplained distance—and then threatened further when she’s unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog. Josiah quickly finds that his expertise, quick wit, and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken. Betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love

Please give us the first page of the book.
CHAPTER ONE
This wave of pain will pass. So will the next.
Life’s hard seasons rock us. Hold on.
Some years, spring comes early.
~ Seedlings & Sentiments
from the “When Sorry Isn’t Enough” Collection

She punched the blender’s Off button hard enough to rock the unit. Not good. All she needed was for that slurpy mixture to go flying across the shop. Maybe Josiah had a point about the blender noise. She couldn’t think with it whirring. How could she expect him to?

But thinking could be dangerous.

“I love this one.”

The voice came from behind her. She had no trouble discerning who it belonged to. She gripped the handle tighter to override the slick of her sweating palms.

“Karin, did you hear me? I said I really like this one.”

She lifted the blender pitcher from its base and held it close to her body. Not a traditional self-defense posture. With his work cap too far back on his head to hide the questioning crease in his forehead or the tuft of artificially bleached-blond hair that teased the creases, Wade Frambolt waited for her response.

“It’s part of our ‘When Sorry Isn’t Enough’ collection,” she said as casually as she could manage. “Still so new, the ink isn’t dry yet.” She should turn, empty the contents of the blender onto the mold-and-deckle screen prepped for it. She should.

Wade’s mouth drew up on one side. “I don’t know how you two keep coming up with these things. You find a way to express what people are thinking but don’t know how to say.”

Karin’s tension eased one notch on an emotional belt with its holes punched too close together. Not much help. “We’d better be able to do that, or we shouldn’t have gotten into this business.” Her nervous laugh belonged to a fourteen-year-old girl, not a business professional. With a husband.

Wade pulled at his lower lip. She followed the path of his gaze. The shop. Her shop. Seedlings and Sentiments.

Where can we find you on the Internet?

When your life's work revolves around repairing other people's marriages, what happens when your own marriage begins to fall apart? Find out what happens to Josiah Chamberlain in Cynthia Ruchti's new book, A Fragile Hope. Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what's left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?

Celebrate the release of A Fragile Hope by entering to win Cynthia's Sign of Hope Giveaway!


One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on May 3. The winner will be announced May 4 on the Litfuse blog.


Thanks so much for this opportunity to touch base with your readers, Lena!

Thank you for sharing this new book with me and my readers. Your books deal with the hard stuff with grace and truth. All of them have changed my perspective in some way. That’s why readers come back to your books over and over.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
A Fragile Hope - Christianbook.com
A Fragile Hope - Amazon
A Fragile Hope - 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:

Sunday, April 16, 2017

WINNERS!!!!

Cindy W (IN) is the winner of Alice's Notions by Tamers Lynn Kraft.

Beth (IA) is the winner of Drama Free by Cindy McMenamin.

Sharon (SC) is the winner of Deacon Brown's Daughters by Michelle Stimpson.

Pam (OH) is the winner of Glimpsing Hope by Carol Moncado.

If you won a book and you like it, please consider giving the author the courtesy of writing a review on Goodreads, Amazon.com, Christianbooks.com, Barnes and Noble, or other Internet sites. 

Also, tell your friends about the book ... and this blog. Thank you.

Congratulations
, everyone. If you won a print book, send me your mailing address:
Click the Contact Me link at the top of the blog, and send me an Email.


If you won an ebook, just let me know what email address it should be sent to.

When you contact me, please give the title and author of the book you won, so I won't have to look it up.


Remember, you have 4 weeks to claim your book.

Friday, April 14, 2017

RETURN TO THE MISTY SHORE - Bonnie Leon - One Free Book

Dear Readers, I’ve loved reading Bonnie Leon books for a long time. The ones set in Alaska take me to that wonderful state.

Bio: Bonnie Leon is the author of twenty-two novels, including the recently released Return to the Misty Shore, the popular Alaskan Skies and bestselling The Journey of Eleven Moons.
Bonnie’s books are being read internationally, and she hears from readers in Australia, Europe, Poland, and even Africa

She enjoys speaking for women’s groups and teaching at writing seminars and conventions and especially delights in mentoring young authors. These days, her time is filled with writing, being a grandmother and relishing precious time with her aged mother.

Bonnie and her husband, Greg, live in Southern Oregon. They have three grown children and eight grandchildren.

Welcome back, Bonnie. You have twice as many grandchildren as I do. Mine are all grown, and two of them have given us great grandsons. Why did you become an author?
I’d always loved books, but never seriously considered writing as a career. After all, that was only for intellectuals who were highly educated, or so I thought. And then a strange thing happened to me. In late 1989, I was gripped by a compulsion to put my thoughts down on paper. I filled legal pads with real life experiences, vignettes, poems, and short stories. It was great fun. And after being encouraged by a successful author to consider publishing, I thought maybe I should give it a try.

Everything changed on June 11, of 1991. A log truck overturned on a corner of a country road and smashed into my van, leaving me with permanent injuries and chronic pain. In a moment, the life I knew was gone. I was unable to do the things I loved and couldn’t even take care of my family. I sank into a depression, and one bleak day, I asked God to please give me something to do that mattered.

He gave me writing, opening every door and leading me to publication. It was a scary and exhilarating time. I’ve been writing ever since, confident that it is what God gifted to me and asked of me.

I love it. Not that you were injured, but that God answered your need in such a special way that blesses all of us. If you weren’t an author, what would be your dream job?
I always thought I’d love to own a bookstore, which in this day and age is generally not a profitable enterprise, but I’d still love to do it. I can see in my mind what the store would look like—cozy with overstuffed chairs and a wood stove where readers and writers could gather to share their love of books and story. There would be a coffee bar for sure and dark wood shelving crowded with great books.

Sounds inviting. If you could have lived at another time in history, what would it be and why?
I love the era of the 1940’s, following the war. It was a time of hope and prosperity here in the United States. Right and wrong were clearly defined and it was an exciting time for women who were discovering all sorts of possibilities.

What place in the United States have you not visited that you would like to?
I’ve never been to New York, the city or the state. I wrote a series of books many years ago, called the Sowers Trilogy and the opening book Where Freedom Grows has a powerful scene that takes place in New York harbor and Ellis Island. So much history played out there. Terrified and hope-filled immigrants poured into our nation. I’ve longed to visit ever since.

How about a foreign country you hope to visit?
I’ve always wanted to visit Scotland. I have roots there, on my father’s side, and love the history and beauty of the country. I imagine exploring Scottish castles, the lochs, and the moorlands. I’d love to stay in an historical B and B on the Loch Ness. Just thinking about it makes me want to schedule my airline reservations.

Both my husband and I have ancestors who came from Ireland to the US. I’ve always wanted to go there. Now my youngest granddaughter had gone on two mission trips to Ireland. I’ve loved poring over the hundreds of pictures she took. What lesson has the Lord taught you recently?
I’m in the middle of a big lesson, and I’m doing my best to “get it.” Life is made up of seasons and at age 65, I’m entering what might be described as my winter season. There is a lot to adjust to—changes in my family, my physical and emotional health, and very recently a diagnosis that will alter my life in a big way.

I’ve been diagnosed with Macular Telangiectasia II, or MacTel II for short. It’s considered rare and over time I will lose my central vision, but will be left with peripheral vision. I’ve already experienced a good deal of visual loss, which makes life interesting. It’s been a big adjustment that has forced me to make changes in my expectations and long term plans. Even driving a car is now on notice. Soon I will have to hand over the keys. I don’t know yet what my life will look like, but I know this—God is in it. And He’s made it clear to me that I am not to go quietly into the night, but rather continue to serve Him in whatever He’s called me to do. I’m waiting and praying and seeking guidance. God knows the entirety of my life and I need not fear, though I admit that is easier said than done. But as with all lessons, I am stumbling forward and again learning to trust. And I’m so grateful that He has my hand.

I’m grateful that He has, too. What would we do without Him? Tell us about the featured book.
Here’s the back cover copy:

In the spring of 1885, Luba Engstrom meets Nicholas Matroona, a strong, brooding Native from the island of Unalaska. Against her parents’ wishes, she elopes, believing love will be enough to bridge the gap between the civilized world of Juneau and the primitive culture of Nicholas’s small village. After all, before Luba was born, her mother lived on a wild Alaskan island until she was forced to leave when a tsunami destroyed her people. But from the moment Luba arrives at Nicholas’s home, she struggles to adapt and learn the village ways.
Will the conflict between her husband’s belief in ancient gods and her faith in Jesus Christ the Redeemer destroy Luba and Nicholas’s relationship?

Return to the Misty Shore—the third book in the Northern Lights series.

Please give us the first page of the book.
I’m happy to, but don’t let this fool you into believing that this is a standard romance. It’s not. And this is only the beginning of a wild ride for Luba Engstrom.

Summer 1885
Was she being foolish? Chasing after a man she didn’t know?

Nineteen-year-old Luba Engstrom had been at the docks when she first saw him. He was loading boxes into a warehouse. Short and muscled, he moved with such grace and power Luba couldn’t help but notice him. His black hair, cropped close to his head, accented his angular features, and he whistled as he sorted and stacked crates, as if he enjoyed the work.

This morning she would return. Maybe he would be there again. She wore her most flattering dress and piled her thick black hair on her head the way most of the white women did. She looked in the mirror before leaving. The lavender in the dress deepened the golden hue of her skin and softened her chocolate-brown eyes.

Already several men had expressed interest in courting her, but Luba hadn’t met anyone who interested her. That was, not until now.

When she reached the wharf, she searched for the man. Almost right away she saw him. His dark hair peeked out from underneath a cloth cap. For several minutes, Luba watched him unload cargo, wishing she could summon the courage to approach him. Finally, with her heart banging in her chest, she quieted the trembling in her hands and, as nonchalantly as possible, strolled down the pier.

She didn’t look at him, but instead watched the fishermen unload their catch. Soon unable to resist, she glanced his way.

At that very moment, he looked up. Her eyes cemented to his. A slow smile lifted the man’s lips, making him look even more handsome.

Luba wrenched away her gaze and turned to regard the boats moored along the dock.

A deep voice came from behind her. “Looks like the fishing has been good today.”

I’m eager to read the book. How can readers find you on the Internet?
Here are some links where you can find me. I hope to hear from you.

Thank you, Bonnie, for sharing this new book with me and my readers. I’m sure they are as eager to read it as I am.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Return to the Misty Shore - Paperback
Return to the Misty Shore (Northern Lights Book 3) - 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:

Thursday, April 13, 2017

WHO KILLED BRIGITT HOLCOMB? - Tamara G Cooper - One Free Book

Welcome, Tamara. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
It surprises me when I finish a book and recognize some of me in each character, even a killer. As the one writing the story, I see things through my perspective, of course, but I can also imagine how a character would act in a situation, even if I’ve never been there.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
After a special date in high school, complete with a long dress made by my mother and beautiful new shoes, my date and I traipsed through an old graveyard with tall pillars around it, like Stonehenge. It was spooky, and it was fun! And muddy, as I recall. My mother was not happy when I got home with mud on my beautiful dress!

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I was probably around six. I loved to write poetry. On my blog, I’ve written about losing all my precious poetry and stories on a bus trip when I was about eighteen, and how it broke my heart. I started writing short stories when I was about nine. After I was grown and married, I wrote my first novel, about a serial killer stalking someone who was hiking in the Colorado Rockies.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I’m a scaredy cat, so “horror” is out. Mysteries, historical romances, and romance are probably my favorites, although I love non-fiction as well. I’m a history buff, especially American history. Biographies, historical diaries, first-person accounts. I love reading, so if a book is well written, I’ll read it, except horror.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I’m a “do-er,” so if something is on my list and I do it, it helps me relax. I love hiking strenuous trails and walking at a gentle pace, too. Swimming is also relaxing. But for those moments when life is overwhelming, I spend time in God’s Word and in prayer. It always re-focuses me to what’s important.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
Actually, I go through the names of family first and see if a name fits. Then, I try out friends’ names. If those don’t work, I sit back and let the character tell me her or his name.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
This is a tough question. I wanted to answer, “Telling someone about Jesus,” then I wanted to say, “my children,” then I wanted to say, “finishing my first book,” and then I wanted to say, “finishing the toughest hike I’ve ever done near Estes Park, Colorado.” But in terms of importance, it would have to be bringing someone to the knowledge of what Jesus did for him or her.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I’m always watching people, trying to figure out who they are, who the people are around them, their “story”—so I think a lioness.

What is your favorite food?
Japanese.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
The most difficult thing for me was connecting emotionally with the reader. I’d want to hop over the terribly painful “stuff” and go on, because, as a writer, we have to “feel” to write the story, and it was emotionally draining. It took two editors to show me how to connect with the reader—give the reader an “experience” she would remember, even if I have to cry a thousand tears while writing it or feel so angry I want to throw something.

I don’t like conflict in life. I’m a peacemaker. So I had a hard time learning to give my characters conflict. Praise the Lord, I was finally able to do that. Tell us about the featured book.
When Marianne inherits her uncle’s remote Texas ranch, she is hopeful that she can escape her past and begin a new life. But hope turns into fear as she faces a terrible truth: she inherited danger. Mac, a neighboring rancher, tells her of three murders over seventeen years, including her uncle. Ruthless people who want their deadly secrets to remain buried come after her. Instead of running away, she heads into the path of monsters preying on the innocent—and hopes she survives the frightening plans they have for her. Mac will stop at nothing to protect her—but will he be able to save her life?

Please give us the first page of the book.
A breeze whispered a welcome to Marianne.

Standing on the bottom rail of the ranch gate, she looked out over her inheritance. Freedom. Escape. Independence. She imagined the words as tumbleweeds rolling playfully across the open land. With a quick smile, she thought she could add two more words: anticipation and hope. She’d dreamed of running away so many times. She couldn’t believe this was real, a new home and a new life just handed to her, far from the ugliness waiting for her back in Abilene.

She was sure not many people would consider this flat landscape with few trees or vegetation as a boon, but Marianne did. In this part of the Texas panhandle, no houses or buildings or mountains or hills blocked her view in any direction. It was all beautiful, and two thousand acres of it were now hers.

As an artist, she could live anywhere. But here, in ranching country, the breeze seemed to whisper, “This is it. You belong here.” And the best part? Her parents were three hours away. She had dreamed of living far, far away from them but never actually thought she would.

All of this seemed too good to be true.

Not a soul was around. Far off in the distance, cattle standing among oil rigs bobbing to the rhythm of the wind were her only company. Feeling a little silly, she waved at them and laughed, and then breathed in the Texas heat as her head fell back. Nothing but the peaceful silence of nature surrounded her. What could be more welcoming?

“You plannin’ on jumpin’ that gate, ma’am?”

The man’s voice startled her. She tried to turn toward it, but her right sandal slid off the rail. She shrieked as she fell and threw out her hand to stop from landing face first in the gravel. The impact jarred her, and she rolled onto her shoulder, then her back, gasping for her next breath.

A door slammed. Crunching steps—running steps—were getting closer. “Ma’am, are you okay?”

The man’s arm slid under her shoulders as he grabbed her hand and tugged her to her feet. When he released her, her foot slid out of her sandal, and her ankle twisted. “Oh! This gravel!”

“Yes, ma’am.” The tall cowboy gripped her shoulders and held her while she put her shoe back on. She looked up at him and found him staring at her feet. Somehow, she was embarrassed that her toenails were painted bright pink with purple polka dots.

“Are you hurt?”

“I’m fine.” She pulled away from him and brushed the stuff off her hands and clothes.
“Do you always sneak up behind women and scare the living daylights out of them?”

When he said nothing, she looked up at him. He was trying to hide a grin behind his huge fist, but he wasn’t doing a very good job of it.

“I’ve never known a truck that could sneak anywhere, ma’am. I’m sure sorry I scared you.”

I love it. How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website/blog is www.TamaraGCooper.com. I have so enjoyed visiting with you, Miss Lena. Thank you for having me as a guest today.

Thank you, Tamara. I know my readers will enjoy interacting with you.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Who Killed Brigitt Holcomb? (Brothers of Texas) (Volume 1) - paperback
Who Killed Brigitt Holcomb? (Brothers of Texas Book 1) - 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:

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

A SILENCE IN THE HEART - Carolyne Aarsen - One Free Book

Welcome back, Carolyne. It’s been a long time since you were on my blog. We’re so glad to have you. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I have always loved reading romance, and I've always loved the Lord. So writing for Love Inspired has been a blessed confluence of both of the things I hold very dear. I love taking my hero and heroine on a journey that challenges their beliefs about themselves and about their faith.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
I have been a Christian my whole life, so I never had a “day” that I came to know the Lord. As far as the happiest day in my life, it's so difficult to put a point on one.  I've had so many happy days in so many areas of my life. It was a happy day when I got married, when my first child was born, when my fourth child was born, when my first book was published, my first child married, my first grandchild born. Each of these has been a happy day in various parts of my life.

That’s true. Wait until you have great grands. How has being published changed your life?
I was very blessed to be a stay-at-home mom. It was a choice my husband and I made early on in our marriage. So when I got published, I essentially had my first job. Suddenly there were more things I had to accomplish in the day, then doing laundry making suppers and lunches and breakfasts and all the other things required to maintaining a household. I felt I had gained my own identity. Besides all the things I loved being, I was now a writer. That was something that was only mine. I learned the language of writing – synopsis, proposal, line edits, copy edits - and my world expanded. Now it is so much a part of who I am, that I don't even think about it.

What are you reading right now?
I'm reading a book about talent. The author is putting forth the idea that talent isn't necessarily inherent. The people who are very good at what they do have spent a lot of time practicing and rehearsing and working. It's rather interesting and rather inspiring. I don't know if I agree with everything he says, but it's challenging my way of thinking. And it's a reminder to me to do the work. That I need to always be challenging myself and working harder if I want to become a better writer. And in spite of how many books I've written, I still feel like I have a ways to go.

As writers, I don’t thing we ever stop growing and learning. What is your current work in progress?
Currently I'm editing the fifth book in my Holmes Crossing series. I hope to get that to the editor in the next couple of weeks, and then it should be out in a month. I'm also finishing up a proposal for Love Inspired. This is a short two-book series about two brothers, who are completely different from each other and each approach life from a different point of view. The one is the solid, stay-at-home kinda guy. Follow the rules. Do what you are supposed to. The younger brother, naturally, does what he wants and doesn't always think about the consequences.

What would be your dream vacation?
I would love to go back to Paris, and I would love to visit Rome as well as Greece. In a few weeks, my husband and I will be traveling to Europe, but we will only be going to the Netherlands and England. I tried to talk my husband into Rome, but he said that was outside his comfort zone. So my dream vacation will have to wait until I can find a willing participant.

How do you choose your settings for each book?
A lot of my books tend to take place in southern Alberta, because that's solid ranching country. I write cowboy romances, so I need to set my stories in ranching country. It's beautiful country, prairies that roll up to hills that edge the Rocky Mountains. So you have the open spaces in the mountains – a beautiful combination of two amazing landscapes.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
I can't really think of anyone. There are a few well-known people that I would love to sit down and give a good solid talking to, but I highly doubt they would listen to me. So what's the point? As I grow older, I find I'm becoming more of an introvert. So the thought of meeting someone new seems a little stressful. I like spending time with my husband, and we get along really good so that's not stressful at all. Unless were discussing where were going to go on vacation.

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
I love making cards and photo books. I like taking pictures and putting them into photo books. I still knit from time to time but I have to be careful with that because writing has taken its toll on my neck and shoulders and knitting just adds to the strain.

My knitting and crocheting affects my shoulders, so I can only do a few rows at a time. I hardly ever do either. What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
Procrastination. I don't know if that's considered an obstacle, but it sure is to me. Every single time I sit down to the keyboard there's a part of me that would seem to be doing something else. Which is rather ironic, because when I'm away from the keyboard and away from the computer I'm always thinking about my stories. But procrastination is a bear. I watched a video a while back on Facebook. I forget who did it. But the woman was talking about organization and doing tasks. Especially tasks that seem overwhelming. She said, "Do one small thing." Don't take on the whole job, just do one small thing. So I think of that every time I want to put off what I have to do. Just write a little bit. You don't have to finish that chapter. Just do one small thing. And once I start, things seem to fall into place.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Do not compare. You are on your own journey and it's always going to be different from other authors. You are going to find one author who makes a sudden breakout with a book that you don't think is nearly as good as yours. But that's just the way things go sometimes. Things come together in different ways that you have no control over so stay focused on your work and do your job and do it diligently. And take note from the previous answer. There was always going to be something that will keep you away from your writing. You have to make the choice. I've sat in a room with a floor scattered with popcorn, books and papers, and assorted other detritus and had to fight to ignore it to get the work done. As for the comparing you know what you need to do. I've looked at other writers and wondered why they are doing better than me and then I listen to them talk and I realize how hard they are working. And my answer is right there.

Yes, the Lord let me know that I’m only to compare my writing to what I’ve done before, not to the writing of other authors. Tell us about the featured book.
A silence in the heart is the book that I got reissued back to me from Love Inspired. So it's not a brand-new story. But I had my Holmes Crossing series in place, and I wanted to continue it. So I reworked the book to fit better with the series and updated it a bit. I found it interesting as I read, how much I had learned in the meantime. So I was thankful to be able to apply some of that to this book.

Please give us the first page of the book.
She thought she heard the cry of a child.

The haunting sound slid through the early-morning quiet just as Tracy stepped out of her car. Still holding the door, she canted her head to one side, listening.

There it was again. Softer this time.

Tracy strode around the concrete-block building, trying to pinpoint the origin. But when she came around the side, the street in front of the clinic was empty as well.

The tension in her shoulders loosened, and she shivered, pulling her thin sweater closer around herself. Ever the optimist, she had left her warmer jacket hanging in the hallway closet of her apartment this morning, counting on the early-September sun to melt away the coolness of the fall morning.

Then a movement caught her eye.

She stopped and turned to face whatever might come.

Then a small boy shuffled cautiously around the corner of the clinic, his head angled down, his thin arms cradling something. He looked to be about six or seven.

Tracy relaxed as she recognized him. For the past two weeks, she had seen him walking past the clinic in the early morning on his way to school. The last few days, he had stopped to look in the window. It had taken a few encouraging waves and smiles from her to finally tease one from his wary face.

She always felt bad for him, going to school on his own, remembering too well her own early-morning treks as a young child.

Tracy might have been inadequately dressed for the weather, but this little boy was even more so. He wore a short-sleeved T-shirt, faded blue jeans, and in spite of the gathering chill, sandals on bare feet. As she watched, he shivered lightly.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
You can find me on my new, very spiffy, website.
www.carolyneaarsen.com  - if you sign up for my newsletter you will receive a free book!
You can follow me on Book Bub to find out about new releases - https://www.bookbub.com/authors/carolyne-aarsen
And Amazon for the same reason - https://www.amazon.com/Carolyne-Aarsen/e/B001HD1OJU

Thank you, Carolyne, for sharing this book with us. I'm eager to read it, and I'm sure my readers are, too.

Readers, here is a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.
A Silence in the Heart (Holmes Crossing Book 4) - 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: 

Monday, April 10, 2017

LOVE AT SUNSET LAKE - Sally Bayless - One Free Book

Dear Readers, our author today is a debut author. I’ve read the featured book. I loved it. Sally is an author to keep an eye on. Her writing is very good and her characters own the stage.

Welcome, Sally. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Quite a bit! For instance, in Love at Sunset Lake, the main character, Tess, alphabetizes her spices, makes endless lists, and is very fond of colored gel pens. I’m guilty on all counts.

Another character in Love at Sunset Lake, Stacey, struggles with a recently purchased order of French fries and a realization that she needs to eat healthier food. Stacey, in a fit of tremendous willpower, eventually throws the French fries away uneaten. In my life, the struggle to eat healthy food is very real. I, however, would never throw away perfectly good fries.

J 

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
Hmm… Lots of options here. How about the time, back before the days of Internet shopping, that a friend and I drove five hours (each way) to go to a shoe store in Pennsylvania?

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I started writing in high school. At the time, I focused mainly on writing for the school newspaper. My first serious attempt at writing a novel was when my kids, who are now 17 and 21, were in grade school.

I was on the high school newspaper staff, too. Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I read mostly Christian romance and cozy mysteries. I also read some literary fiction, an occasional biography, some narrative nonfiction (Erik Larson), mainstream contemporary romance, some suspense (especially Dick Francis), and a wide range of mystery novels. I’m always on the lookout for a book that will make me laugh out loud, usually because of its unusual characters.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I’m blessed to be able to write as my fulltime job. That helps a lot! Also, with my youngest now 17 and driving, I don’t run nearly as much as I used to. I even traded in my mommyvan for a little SUV. Beyond that, the things that keep me sane are starting each day with Bible study and prayer and being able to talk things over with my very logical engineer husband.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
Oh, I struggle with this one, especially the male names! So many names that used to be male are now female. Years ago, I made a giant list of names that I liked, drawn from a name-your-baby website. I usually look there and find some that appeal. Then I look up the meanings of the names and look at data on the Social Security website, which will tell you how popular a name was in a given year. Some character names, though, just come to me.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Raising our two children.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
I would like to be a dolphin. I love swimming, and I could hang out in some warm, tropical ocean.

What is your favorite food?
Answering “all” would be wrong, I suppose. I’ll say it’s a tie between seedless Concord grapes (I think the variety is actually Mars) that I buy at our local farmer’s market in the fall, anything chocolate, and spaghetti and meatballs.

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
Plotting. In college I studied journalism. The plot of a news story is very straightforward. At first, the only way I could really see the three-act structure of a novel was by visualizing each book as a play. To understand plotting, I read many, many books and took several classes online and at conferences. I’m happy to say that plotting is now one of my favorite parts of writing a book.

I use a timeline of events, but not plotting. Tell us about the featured book.
Love at Sunset Lake is a contemporary Christian romance that features a small-town setting, down-to-earth characters, a touch of humor, and the healing power of God’s love.
The heroine is struggling caterer Tess Palmer, who inherits her great-aunt’s home at Sunset Lake, Missouri. She thinks she’s found the way to save her business. Selling the property can provide just the infusion of capital she needs to pay off her debts and move to a larger commercial kitchen.
The hero is wildlife painter Jack Hamlin, who lives across Sunset Lake, and wants the area kept exactly as it is—a place where waterfowl can thrive and where he can find peace and solitude to ease his troubled heart. Although he’s drawn to Tess’s honesty and beauty, he’s appalled to learn she would welcome a deal with a developer, and he vows to stop her.

Please give us the first page of the book for my readers.
Tess Palmer didn’t need to be perfect. She only needed to get every detail right.

Every time.

And as a special events caterer, her to-do list this Friday ran for three entire pages of details.
She stopped at a light in a pricey St. Louis suburb and glanced at the clipboard on the console of her van. For the next event, a simple surprise birthday party, she’d gone over her list so many times that the edges of the paper curled. The future of her catering business was at stake, after all.

She drove two blocks farther, passed a row of dogwoods in full bloom at the entrance to a subdivision, and parked as instructed in the client’s three-car garage, where her commercial van could be hidden from the guest of honor.

Up since five, Tess had triple-checked the food, recounted the plates, and examined every tablecloth for spots. She’d even taken more care than normal with her appearance, using a double coating of hairspray to keep her hair in a bun, dousing her white blouse with extra starch, and wearing her newest black pants. This event was going to be a success. She’d make sure of it.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
My website is www.sallybayless.com. Readers can find excerpts from all my books there, can email me, and can sign up for my newsletter and my street team. Newsletter subscribers are the first to learn when I release a new book. My street team reads books before they’re even published and helps promote them on social media.

I’m on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/authorsallybayless/. Facebook is my favorite social media, so I check it often.


Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
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: