Thursday, May 18, 2023

Murmur in the Mudcaves by Kathleen Denly

 



Campo, California 1873

Interesting story about Biddy who had been adopted, heading into desert area to help her natural sister and brother save their ranch. Gideon had been hired as a cook for the ranch, but it had all turned into a mess just before he got there. Each character had self image problems and made lots of mistakes. They learn from a God of second chances how they are together as a team. Wildy unexpected circumstances arise. I skipped over a lot and found some plot holes and drops. Overall it was a good story where I wanted to see what was going to happen. 

I received this book free from the author, publisher and CelebrateLit book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

#MurmurInTheMudcaves #KathleenDenly #BooksYouCanFeelGoodAbout #FiveStarNovel #CelebrateLit



About the Book


Book: Murmur in the Mudcaves

Author: Kathleen Denly

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: May 16, 2023

He came to cook for ranch hands, not three single women.

Gideon Swift, a visually impaired Civil War Veteran, responds to an ad for a ranch cook in the Southern California desert mountains. He wants nothing more than to forget his past and stay in the kitchen where he can do no harm. But when he arrives to find his employer murdered, the ranch turned to ashes, and three young women struggling to survive in the unforgiving Borrego Desert, he must decide whether his presence protects them or places them in greater danger.

Bridget “Biddie” Davidson finally receives word from her older sister who disappeared with their brother and pa eighteen years prior, but the news is not good. Determined to help her family, Biddie sets out for a remote desert ranch with her adopted father and best friend. Nothing she finds there is as she expected, including the man who came to cook for the shambles of a ranch.

When tragedy strikes, the danger threatens not only her plans to help her sister, but her own dreams for the future—with the man who’s stolen her heart.

 

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author


Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting. 

More from Kathleen

The Making of a Hero 

Picture in your mind the typical male rancher or cowboy. Can you see him? If we’re going for the full stereotype, you’re looking at a tall, handsome man who is, above all, strong. Particularly in the nineteenth century, it takes strength to build a house, install fencing, chop wood, haul water, heft hay bales, and most of all manage cattle. Not to mention the 101 other things it takes to start and keep a ranch running.  

Now consider the aftermath of the American Civil War. Many men never returned from the battlefields, and those who did often returned with injuries that would remain with them the rest of their lives. Some would suffer chronic pain until the day they died.  

In considering whose story I wanted to tell next, I wondered about that last group of men in the context of running a ranch. How could a seriously injured man, suffering chronic pain, keep his ranch going in an era where able-bodied men were more difficult to find? And what about those whose ranches were too new and small to support the cost of hiring help?  

This was the beginning of my inspiration for Gideon Swift–a Civil War Veteran still struggling daily with the consequences of having gone to war, ten years after his injuries sent him home. 

Raised to believe true men were strong and weak men were next-to useless, Gideon’s identity is shattered when an explosion leaves him with brain damage that causes recurring migraines with aura and the loss of periphery vision in one eye. For those unfamiliar, a migraine with aura is a severe headache preceded or accompanied by sensory disturbances called aura. Examples of such disturbances include flashes of light, blind spots, general blurry vision, and blurry or shimmery lines in vision. There can also be speech or language difficulty, muscle weakness, and/or numbness or tingling in one side of a person’s face, one hand, or one limb. Gideon experiences most of these at different times, but his most common sensory disturbance is a curled shimmery line that appears in his vision. 

He is further humbled by a series of tragic losses partially triggered by his medical condition. These are the events that send him to California, determined never to work with cattle again, and never to marry. 

I am often asked how much of myself I put into my characters. In Gideon’s case, I modeled his pain partially after my own. While I have no peripheral vision loss, nor brain damage, I do have recurring migraines. In my case, these are brought about by my menstrual cycle and only occasionally involve aura symptoms. Still, these severe headaches have lasted from a mere hour, up to nearly a week, and are frequently beyond anything my medications can alleviate. Too often, this pain leaves me unable to function. If I’m lucky I can sleep through it. If not, I lay awake in a darkened room for hours with pain preventing me from drifting into blissful unconsciousness. Nauseousness, foggy thinking, dizziness, and exhaustion are frequently parts of my experience. I have also experienced one-sided tingling numbness and the same curly, shimmering line that Gideon experiences. Yet, I know others who have far worse migraines. So, in describing Gideon’s episodes, I combined my own experiences with those of family and friends whom I have witnessed suffering.  

Through Murmur in the Mud Caves, we see how God works in Gideon’s life and heart to remind him of where his true value and strength come from. It is my hope that his journey will touch the hearts of readers and encourage them in whatever trials they may be facing. We are never alone. Whatever God brings us to, He will bring us through. He loves us and has a good purpose for everything we endure in this life, even when we cannot understand His reasons.

Blog Stops

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away the grand prize package of 1 set of beautifully engraved, metal measuring spoons, 1 pouch of “Baking Day” potpourri, 1 Cat and Mouse kitchen timer, 1 vintage wooden sign with Christian encouragement message, 1 Cowboy Hat cookie cutter with recipe for Cowboy Sugar Cookies, 1 Kitchen towel that reads, “This Home is our Happily Ever After”, and 1 Kathleen Denly engraved pen!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/2606f/murmur-in-the-mudcaves-celebration-tour-giveaway


MyReviews

Monday, May 15, 2023

A Season At The Grand by Sherri Wilson Johnson

 

Alabama 1905. Over the summer, Amelia is commissioned as a photographer to take photos for use on penny postcards and additional pictures of the resort and guests. She has no idea what she's in for. She feels she can be totally independent but finds that when Titus helps out it's not awful. He is trying to maintain a professional distance as the manager. He has his own personal struggles and would rather study the birds. Add in some intrigue and danger with political undertones of the day and it makes quite the interesting story as well as very likable characters. Great summer read.

I received this book free from the author, publisher and CelebrateLit book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

#ASeasonAtTheGrand #SherriWilsonJohnson #BooksYouCanFeelGoodAbout #ChristianHistoricalFiction #FiveStarNovel #CelebrateLit


About the Book


Book: A Season at the Grand

Author: Sherri Wilson Johnson

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: May 9, 2023

Can the perfect picture reveal the truth before it’s too late?

Photographer Amelia Harris has had enough of her aunts’ meddling matchmaking. So when The Photographic Times commissions her to spend the summer on Mobile Bay taking portraits of the elite and capturing nature for penny postcards, Amelia happily accepts. But this job is not as simple as it appears, and Amelia must defend against naysayers if she’s to ever gain respect in a man’s world. And that doesn’t leave any room for romance.

Point Clear Resort General Manager Titus Overton never wanted the position he inherited when his cousin passed away. If it were up to him, he would be traveling with the Audubon Society to far-off places, enjoying the solitude of nature instead of providing relaxation for his guests. And now he has to deal with the big-city photographer stomping her way through sand dunes that house the migratory birds nesting there. But when she reveals an admiration for his feathered friends, it reawakens a longing in his heart he’d buried after the death of his fiancé.

When threats arise against Amelia and the other resort guests, Titus knows he must step in to help. But she insists they trust God for deliverance. How can he turn to a God who took away his first beloved?

As the danger closes in, he must find the courage to overcome his past before someone gets hurt—especially the woman he’s come to love. 

Click here to get your copy! 

About the Author


Sherri Wilson Johnson is an Inspirational Romance novelist, graphic designer and lover of all things book related. She’s always been a sucker for a good love story—whether it’s real life or fiction (both historical and contemporary). Completing her first novel at the age of eighteen, and later burning the only copy in the fireplace, she continued learning the craft of writing and now writes Contemporary Romantic Suspense and Historical Romance with a splash of suspense and/or mystery. When not writing, she’s usually assisting other publishing professionals or helping authors realize their dreams of becoming published. Sherri and her husband are empty-nesters and live in Georgia with their two dogs. She loves spending time with family, vacationing at the beach, curling up with a good book or working on her current work-in-progress. She dreams of a second home on some beach somewhere some day, where she can plot and write romantically suspenseful novels. 

More from Sherri

A Season at the Grand is set in Point Clear, Alabama on Mobile Bay, because it is one of my favorite vacation spots. I adore sitting on the dock and watching dolphins while birds of all types fly overhead. I am always inspired by the ocean, and many stories have come out of my time in the Mobile Bay area.

Point Clear is also the setting of my novella, Bayside Betrayal, which also involves the Grand Hotel but under a fictitious name. Bayside Betrayal is the launching story of my Jeopardized Reunions series, which is a series filled with contemporary reunion romantic suspense stories. Why am I telling you about this series? Well, book five, which I am writing now, holds a special attachment to A Season at the Grand because one of the characters is a descendent of the couple in the story. I’m so attached to this setting that I think I may have to keep writing stories set there for years to come. I hope you’ll check out A Season at the Grand and my other books too.

I’d love it if you’d follow me on social media and join my subscriber list. I’m always excited to hear from readers!

Blog Stops

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Sherri is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

 https://promosimple.com/ps/25f5b/a-season-at-the-grand-celebration-tour-giveaway


My reviews


Sunday, May 14, 2023

Lilac Cottage by Carrie Fancett Pagels


Present day on Mackinac Island, in an area of exclusive mansion style homes, wealthy families. When Rachel's Gram dies, her mother takes everything away from her. This is in some ways a Cinderella story but with her own mother instead of a stepmother. Lots of detail, and a murder mystery. You thoroughly get to know Rachel and Jack. Intricate story, long emotional damage and healing. Holds your attention for sure. Christian beliefs.

I received this book free from the author, publisher and CelebrateLit book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

#LilacCottage #CarrieFancettPagels #BooksYouCanFeelGoodAbout #ChristianHistoricalFiction #FiveStarNovel #CelebrateLit




About the Book

 


Book: Lilac Cottage

Author: Carrie Fancett Pagels

Genre: Historical Romance, Christian Fiction

Release date: April 12, 2023

Inspirational Contemporary Women’s Fiction from Award-winning Bestselling Author Carrie Fancett Pagels

Lilac Cottage – set on Mackinac Island, Book 2 Mackinac Cottages Series

Out of options, after losing her job and apartment, Rachel Dunmara “camps out” at her deceased Grandmother’s cottage on Mackinac Island. Next door, her childhood nemesis, Jack Welling, is overseeing his family’s remodeling of their home on the West Bluff. When Rachel’s new boss, at a local coffee shop, pushes her to work as Jack’s assistant, for her second job, can they mend their rift?

Kareen Parker, widowed in the past year, returns to the island to share long-held information with her son and to transition ownership of her resort to her son. Her grandson befriends Rachel, who was banned by her family from associating with the Parkers.

After a summer full of secrets that are finally revealed, can three families be healed?

Click here to get your copy! 

About the Author


Carrie Fancett Pagels is the award-winning author and bestselling author of over twenty Christian fiction books. Twenty-five years as a psychologist didn’t “cure” her overactive imagination! Raised in Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula, you’ll find her most summers at the Straits of Mackinac—where many of her stories are set. 

More from Carrie

Why I Wrote Lilac Cottage

I had felt the Lord nudging me to write a sequel to my first-ever Women’s Fiction, Butterfly Cottage (after writing 20+ Historical Romances in Christian Fiction). I travel up to the Straits of Mackinac each summer to do book signings, library visits, and to see family and friends. At several of my book signings at the Island Bookstore, on Mackinac Island, I had readers ask if I had a sequel planned for Butterfly Cottage. I met a lovely young reader at one of the signings, who worked at Lucky Bean, my fave coffee shop in the world and it is on the island. Rachel asked me about plans for the next book and I thought – what if I had a young heroine who worked at Lucky Bean for the summer? Ya know, most authors stories start with the what if. So, I also tossed around the notion of what if Rachel was actually camping out in one of the mansions, called “cottages”, up on West Bluff? That spawned my plot thoughts.

When I work, I percolate an idea. I also will not pursue writing a story unless God’s hand is on it. So, I first submitted my will to His. I got the go ahead. I also got a lot of other stuff: Norovirus, Covid, a root canal and crown, a bleed on an optic nerve, and also what I thought might be a heart attack but thankfully it was only my Rheumatoid Arthritis, oh and did I mention recurrent shingles? Yup—all that. So, I figure there must be a reason this book needs to be written for me to have confronted such opposition from the enemy. 

This is my very first novel where the main characters are all saved and are all newbies as far as being refreshed in their faith. At my church, one of the pastors preached about how new Christians are so on fire for the Lord and how they are often different from those of us who have been saved for a long time. I wanted to have that reflected in this novel. 

I know people have strong feelings about the pandemic. I wanted to make sure I had written something that included some reality of what the winding down was like in 2022, which is when the story is set. My father was born in 1918 during the Spanish Flu pandemic and I always felt that authors from that time didn’t include enough references to how this affected people. I didn’t dwell on Covid in this novel, but I did touch on it in I hope realistic ways, such as shortages of workers. 

Whew! One other reason I wrote some of the characters in this book was to give one of my continuing characters, Mrs. Hampy Parker, some redemption. She’s been a Co-dependent in two of my books (Butterfly Cottage and Behind Love’s Wall) and it was time, since she’s now in her early 80’s, for her to get free from that. I enjoyed the new start her character got and it was inspired by one of my friend’s real life stories. 

Thank you for being part of the tour!!! And may God bless and keep you!

Blog Stops

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Carrie is giving away the grand prize package of $70 Amazon Gift Card, a copy of Lilac Cottage, and a copy of Butterfly Cottage!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/25f56/lilac-cottage-celebration-tour-giveaway

My reviews

Thursday, May 11, 2023

Rocky Mountain Rendezvous by Misty M. Beller

 



Good book. Interesting story about four sisters who head to a trapper's rendezvous to fulfill a wish of their father's. They had no idea what they were getting into. Nice to get to know all of the characters, with Juniper being the main focus and Riley who felt the need to be their protector. The wild west at some of it's rowdiest! Trappers, native Americans, theft, a search and mystery, danger, a fulfilling journey. Very close sisters and their relationship. Communicating with others and understanding their ways and cultures. Beautiful scenery. Basic Christian values. 

I received this book free from the author, publisher and CelebrateLit book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

#RockyMountainRendezvous #MistyMBeller #BooksYouCanFeelGoodAbout #ChristianHistoricalFiction #FiveStarNovel #CelebrateLit


About the Book

 


Book: Rocky Mountain Rendezvous

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: June 6, 2023

In 1837, Juniper Collins and her sisters are shocked by their father’s final request in his will for a special set of beads to be returned to a Piegan Blackfoot woman he credits with saving his life during his travels west. Together, the sisters set out for the trapper rendezvous to find the woman, but their mission turns more daunting when they come upon the mass of men and lodges spread out in the Green River Valley.

Riley Turner came west to find peace and quiet and live off the land, but when four unprotected women arrive at the rendezvous, he feels compelled to help them and is more fascinated by Juniper than any other woman he’s known.

As their search brings only empty leads and dead ends, the sisters must decide whether to return east or stay in the mountains to continue looking–and that’s if the mystery woman is even still alive. Is the risk to honor their father’s last request worth the danger they find at every turn?

Discover the majesty–and treachery–of the Rocky Mountains in this unique combination of exhilarating adventure, inspiring faith, and sweet romance from USA Today bestselling author Misty M. Beller. 

Click here to get your copy! 

About the Author


Misty M. Beller is a USA Today bestselling author of romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

Raised on a farm and surrounded by family, Misty developed her love for horses, history, and adventure. These days, her husband and children provide fresh adventure every day, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

Misty’s passion is to create inspiring Christian fiction infused with the grandeur of the mountains, writing historical romance that displays God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Sharing her stories with readers is a dream come true for Misty. She writes from her country home in South Carolina and escapes to the mountains any chance she gets. 

More from Misty

What IS a trapper rendezvous?

Rocky Mountain Rendezvous is the story of four sisters who head west to accomplish their father’s deathbed request—return a special set of beads to a Blackfoot woman who saved his life during his travels west two decades earlier. The sisters head west with the supply wagons bound for the 1837 trapper rendezvous to find the native woman. But the sight that greeted them in the Green River Valley (in modern-day Wyoming) was nothing like they expected!

Men EVERYWHERE!

Supply wagons would come from the east every summer, and mountain men and natives would come from all throughout the Rockies to trade furs for the supplies they’d need in the coming year. This was usually the only opportunity for trading each year, so EVERYONE came and the camp stretched for miles. This was a great time for friends to catch up, and the festivities always included a great deal of drinking and horse racing. The rendezvous was a sight to behold! 

In Rocky Mountain Rendezvous, Riley Turner is one of the trappers at the meet-up, and he realizes immediately what kind of danger the ladies are in from unscrupulous men in the crowd. He helps them with their search, and they find so much more than they expected along the way!

Each book in this series will take place during a different year, featuring a different rendezvous. Definitely fodder for fun stories. I pray you love this first book as the Collins sisters embark on the search of a lifetime.  

Blessings!

Misty

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, May 3
Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 3
Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 4
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 4
Texas Book-aholic, May 5
By the Book, May 5
Locks, Hooks and Books, May 6
Connie’s History Classroom, May 7
The Book Club Network, May 7
Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, May 8 (Author Interview)
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 8
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, May 9
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 9
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 10
Karen Baney Reviews, May 10
Daysong Reflections, May 11
Books You Can Feel Good About, May 11
Betti Mace, May 12
For the Love of Literature, May 12
Blossoms and Blessings, May 13
Life, Love, Writing, May 13
Tell Tale Book Reviews , May 14
Mary Hake, May 14
For Him and My Family, May 15
Holly’s Book Corner, May 15
Pause for Tales, May 16
To Everything There Is A Season , May 16

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/25ca2/rocky-mountain-rendezvous-celebration-tour-giveaway


My reviews:
Amazon

Saturday, April 22, 2023

Still My Forever by Kim Vogel Sawyer

 




Christian Historical Romance 1905
Cute romance. Ava and Gil were close until he left town, when she chose not to go with him. Her mother was sick, they had lost her two young brothers and she didn't feel she could leave them. Gil had been in N.Y. City learning to be a composer but hadn't had the best results. He came home for the summer to regroup, intending to go back to N.Y. to teach, then life got in the way and God's plans for the two evolved. Interesting, heartfelt tale. Makes you feel like cheering by the end!
I received this book free from the author, publisher and NetGalley book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
#NetGalley #StillMyForever #KimVogelSawyer #BooksYouCanFeelGoodAbout #ChristianHistoricalFiction #WaterBrook

My reviews