Tuesday, February 26, 2019

WINNER!!!


You won Ladies of Intrigue by Michelle Griep!

Thanks to all who came by and commented on the giveaway.
If you follow the blog, you'll know about future ones. If not, sign up thru Follower (GFC)
in the right sidebar so you don't miss out.

~ Have a blessed day in the Lord~

Monday, February 25, 2019

Exclusive Cover Reveal!!!

I absolutely love this story, A Stray Drop of Blood by Roseanna White!!! And the old cover will always have a special place in my heart because it is the first Biblical Fiction I ever read. But ...I am excited to see the new cover revealed tonight! 


Have you marked your calendar📆 for the Season Premiere of Roseanna White LIVE? 🎥🎥🎥 You won't want to miss this Special Announcement! 🎉 Tune in Monday at 7pm EST HERE: https://bit.ly/2txCorJ@roseannamwhite #booknews #LIVE #coverreveal 

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Review + Giveaway ~ Ladies of Intrigue by Michelle Griep

GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED
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Paperback288 pages
Published February 1st 2019 by Barbour Books

3 Page-Turners Under One Cover from Reader Favorite Michelle Griep!

Can truth and love prevail when no one is as they appear?
The Gentleman Smuggler’s Lady
Cornish Coast, 1815
When a prim and proper governess returns to England from abroad, she expects to comfort her dying father—not fall in love with a smuggler. Will Helen Fletcher keep Isaac Seaton’s unusual secret?
The Doctor’s Woman (A Carol Award Winner!)
Dakota Territory, 1862
Emmy Nelson, daughter of a missionary doctor, and Dr. James Clark, city doctor aspiring to teach, find themselves working side by side at Fort Snelling during the Dakota Uprising. That is when the real clash of ideals begins.
A House of Secrets
St. Paul, Minnesota, 1890
Ladies Aide Chairman, Amanda Carston resolves to clean up St. Paul’s ramshackle housing, starting with the worst of the worst: a “haunted” house that’s secretly owned by her beau—a home that’s his only means of helping brothel girls escape from the hands of the city’s most infamous madam. 


To learn more about Michelle, visit her website MichelleGriep.com



My Review
4 STARS

Ladies of Intrigue is another fascinating compilation of three novellas with calculating characters and all kinds of shenanigans going on. I was held captive by the words on the pages. How are these couples going to survive treachery, brutality, and danger? Will they continue to rely on God? Will they discover they can trust and depend on one another?

Griep is a master when it comes to creating realistic situations. I found each story came to a satisfying conclusion without being rushed. I highly recommend this novella collection to fans of suspense. The stories are appropriate for any age and quick to read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review. 

GIVEAWAY
If you're interested in my gently read copy, if at all possible, PLEASE follow the blog through GFC in the right sidebar (it helps publishers to see a higher follower count for future review opportunities) and leave a comment with your email address (US ONLY, 48 contiguous states) so you can be notified if you win. Unless I know you well and communicate with you regularly, I will NOT chase you down. It tells me you didn't read the directions. 
No email. No entry. I will draw a winner on Feb 26. 

Complete giveaway rules here


Monday, February 18, 2019

Review ~ The Alamo Bride by Kathleen Y'Barbo (Daughters of the Mayflower #7)


Paperback256 pages
Published February 1st 2019 by Barbour Books
A Series for Lovers of History, Adventure, Romance, and Ancestry


Will Ellis Lose All at the Alamo?
Ellis Dumont finds a man in New Orleans Grey unconscious on Dumont property in 1836. As his fevers rage, the man mutters strange things about treasures and war. Either Claiborne Gentry has lost his mind or he’s a spy for the American president—or worse, for the Mexican enemy that threatens their very lives. With the men of her family away, Ellis must stand courageous and decide who she can trust. Will she put her selfish wants ahead of the future of the republic or travel with Clay to Mission San Jose to help end the war?

Join the adventure as the Daughters of the Mayflower series continues with The Alamo Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo.

More in the Daughters of the Mayflower series:
The Mayflower Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse – set 1620 Atlantic Ocean (February 2018)
The Pirate Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo – set 1725 New Orleans (April 2018)
The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep – set 1760 during the French and Indian War (June 2018)
The Patriot Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse – set 1774 Philadelphia (August 2018)​
The Cumberland Bride by Shannon McNear – set 1794 on the Wilderness Road (October 2018)
The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall – set 1814 Baltimore (December 2018)
The Alamo Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo – set 1836 Texas (February 2019)



My Review
4 STARS

The Alamo Bride is set in 1835 Texas, a time of great turmoil and tension. Clay Gentry is a New Orleans Grey on a perilous mission for the president when he becomes wounded and ends up under the care of Ellis Valmont, a young woman training to be a healer under her mother’s supervision. Ellis is the great-granddaughter of Maribel Cordoba from The Patriot Bride.

The historical details are precise and brought this time in history alive with intricate descriptions of settings, clothing, mannerisms and people. I discovered them to be brave and valiant in the face of great adversity. I also found it to be a dialogue driven story, allowing me to get to know the characters more intimately through their conversations, especially the ones between Ellis and her grandfather. The respect, love, and genuine affection for one another shines like a newly minted penny. I smiled often as I read their banter.

It is easy to romanticize history but The Alamo Bride, while it definitely has romance, also shows the dangers that beset those who lived and fought for independence from Mexico. The author includes notes in the back of the book that are fascinating as she explains historical details in more depth.

This is a welcome addition to the Daughters of the Mayflower series. Fans of historical fiction will enjoy the book. This is Christian fiction but faith in God is not preachy. It is elemental in the lives of each character, worn like a beloved cloak.

I was given a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher. No review was required. No compensation received.


Have you read any of the books in this series? If so, which one/s? Did you like them? 
Let's chat books in the comments!


Thursday, February 14, 2019

How Cupid Shot Me :-)

Reblogging this post from 2012! 


My freshman year of college, WAY back in 1980, I stopped at the local Mickey D's most days on the way to, or from, classes to get a cinnamon danish, or a double cheeseburger with no ketchup, extra onions, depending on if I was eating breakfast or lunch.


Now I don't know about your local McD's but mine had a couple of cute guys working there! A couple times I saw this one guy stick his head around the shake machine and all I could see were these gorgeous blue eyes under a shock of dark hair! No body ever came out, just part of the head. Apparently, he was interested. So much so that as I was standing in line one day he came in the front door, unbeknownst to me, and bumped me from behind into an elderly man in front of me, all the while grinning from ear to ear as he went on back behind the counter. I was not amused!

The next day...I go in for my double cheeseburger, no ketchup, extra onions. Little do I know that "the pushy guy" is going to make my burger and he has a little surprise for me. Back then those particular burgers came in boxes. Remember? Well, extra onions would normally mean...a few extra. Not a TON. He put so many onions on that burger it wasn't even funny! Ok, it was funny. He knew I would bring it back. There was that big grin again and those blue eyes sparkled!!!

 Fast forward to a few days later - You knew I was going back, right?! It was super busy that morning and I had a friend who worked there. As I was walking out she hollared across the restaurant at me, "Hey! My manager wants to know if you'll go out with him." I hollared back, "He can ask me himself!" And I walked out. Humph! That'll show him.

When I came in the next time, I honestly don't remember how many days it was, but I do remember the date. It was December 4th, 1980, early morning. The "guy" finally came out from behind the counter, walked over to my table... well, he sort of swaggered ;) asked if he could sit down and proceeded to ask me out! My heart was pounding so hard and fast I was sure he could see it beating :)

It was love at first bite sight! I know in my ♥ that God brought us together but Mickey D's will always hold a special place in our ♥'s!

 We'll celebrate 30 37 years of marriage this summer!

 And that's How Cupid Shot Me!





Genesis 2:24 ~ For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.


*cupid is from microsoft clipart 


 How did you meet the one who holds the key to your heart?



WINNER!!!


Amazon.com gift card designCONGRATULATIONS DEDE!!!
You won the $5 Amazon e-gift card!
         Please respond within 24 hours to the email I sent. 



Thanks to all who came by to share in the release day 
fun of Seeking His Love by Carrie Turansky! 
If you missed the post, you can read my interview with Carrie, as well as my review of the book, HERE.
I hope you'll pick up a copy of this sweet story today. 







Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Review ~ Between Stairs and Stardust by Pepper Basham

Kindle Edition
February 14, 2019
Experience a touch of magic with these four fairytale-ish novellas that span over one hundred years. Linked by an illustrated book of fairytales, each novella is an enchanting combination of a beloved classic sprinkled with the author’s own brand of fairy dust.

Between Stairs and Stardust is set in 1913 Asheville, NC at the beautiful Biltmore Estate and includes a budding children’s book illustrator, an out-of-the box heir, and a teensy bit of Cinderella romance. 

Entanglements has a Rapunzel twist and is set in 1920’s Boston between a reluctant heiress, a charming piano tuner, and a game of chess.

Twice Upon A Time is a Beauty-And-The-Beast inspired tale that brings a romance novelist back home to her family's pecan farm... and the ex-fiance she left behind.

Once Bitten is a nod to Snow White that includes a fake date with a handsome woodsman, seven geeks, and the world's best apple tarts.




My review is for Pepper Basham's novella, Between Stairs and Stardust
It's available on Amazon in the compilation. I'm getting ready to read the other stories and if they are half as good as Basham's, they will be phenomenal! 

*Pre-order:



My Review
5 STARS!!!

“Weren’t the best stories about people who had the courage to make it through the hardest circumstances to discover the sweetest ever-afters?”

Between Stairs and Stardust is a lovely and creative re-telling of Cinderella. With all the magic and fairy dust imaginable, this story swirls with captivating language woven around themes of restoration, love and hope that only the One who is the creator of all of life can give us abundantly from His grace.

“Bravery is not walking confidently in the light but keeping faith even in the dark. Oh, yes! For the brave go with hope as their light, and not even the shadow of death will deter them.”

My heart was so moved by this story, I found myself shedding tears from the sheer beauty of it. Basham’s lyrical prose allowed my imagination to flutter and flit as free as a fairy. Add in the grandeur of Biltmore House and I was transported right into this magical tale Between Stairs and Stardust!

“Imagination in the head of a smart mind and the breast of a kind heart? I predict all sorts of glorious trouble in the best possible way.”

I was provided an advanced electronic copy from the author. No review was required. No compensation received.


*I am not affiliated with Amazon and make monies if you use the link to purchase a copy of the book. It is provided as a courtesy only.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Interview w/ Carrie Turansky + Review, AND a $5.00 Amazon E-gift Card Giveaway

UPDATE: GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED


Welcome back to Stuff & Nonsense, Carrie! My first interview with you posted on Monday, March 26, 2012, almost seven years ago! Would you like to give us a glimpse into your writing career over these last seven years and where you see yourself in another seven?

 

Thank you, Anne. It’s been a busy seven years for me! I’ve released five novels and three novellas since that last interview. All five novels have been English historical romances set in the early 1900s: The Governess of Highland Hall, The Daughter of Highland Hall, A Refuge at Highland Hall, Shine Like the Dawn, and Across the Blue. The novellas were Moonlight Over Manhattan, Waiting for His Return, and A Trusting Heart in Mountain Christmas Brides.

 

Looking toward the future, I have four novels coming out this year. Three are contemporary romances in the Bayside Treasures series: Seeking His Love, A Man to Trust, and Snowflake Sweethearts. The fourth novel, No Ocean too Wide, is an English and Canadian historical novel that is inspired by the child emigration scheme that sent more than 100, 000 poor and orphaned children from England to Canada in the late 1800s and early 1900s. I’m currently writing a sequel to that book and after that ... we’ll just have to wait and see what’s next.

 

I have read and loved ALL of your historical novels! They are beautiful stories. You write both contemporary fiction and historical fiction equally well. Do you favor one genre over the other?

I enjoy writing both historical and contemporary stories. It’s been fun to be able to move back and forth between time periods and to write both novellas and novels. I do love historical research and discovering fun and interesting events in history, so if I had to choose, I’d say writing historical novels is my favorite.

I can always tell that you've put a lot of time and effort into your research. It's what makes your stories incredibly real! Is there one theme you lean towards including in your stories more than another? If so, why do you think that is?

I often weave in the theme of God’s faithfulness by showing how He can take the hard and painful things in our lives and turn them around for good. Forgiveness and second chances are also themes you’ll often find in my stories.

I am so grateful for God's faithfulness! He is always there for us, no matter what. Who would you pick to play the lead roles if Seeking His Love was made into a movie? (It would make a great Hallmark movie!)

Wouldn’t that be fun to see it made into a Hallmark movie! I think Natalie Portman would make a great Rachel Clark and Henry Cavill would be a terrific Cam McKenna.

Yes!!! I can see both of them as Rachel & Cam. Can you give us a sneak peek into what book you are
working on right now? When does it release?

I’ve just finished the final edits on No Ocean too Wide, the first McAllister Family Novel. Here’s a bit about the story: When Laura McAllister, a young lady's maid, learns her three siblings have been taken from their mother and immigrated to Canada without her mother's knowledge, Laura determines to search for them and reunite the family. But lack of funds and resistance from authorities push her to use a false name and take a position with a child emigration society to gain passage to Canada. Andrew Frasier, a wealthy young lawyer, is surprised to see his mother's former lady's maid on board ship escorting a group of child immigrants, especially when she uses a different name. Laura eventually convinces Andrew to help her search for her siblings and uncover the truth about the treatment of British Home Children. Romantic feelings grow between this unlikely couple, and though they have different backgrounds, they share a growing faith and desire to seek justice and relief for the children who are mistreated.

Ooooo...That sounds fascinating!!! Do you have a book you’re looking forward to reading?

Karen Barnett’s Ever Faithful and Lori Benton’s The King’s Mercy are both coming out in June from WaterBrook, and I’m excited to read those stories!

I have never read a book by either one of those authors but always hear good things about their stories. Guess I should add them to my must-read list. Where can you be found on the Internet?

I love to connect with reading friends through my website and blog: http://carrieturansky.com/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/carrieturansky/boards/

Thank you again for sharing what’s been happening in your writing career, Carrie!

Readers, I hope you’ll pick up Carrie’s books because you can depend on them to be Christian and filled with beautiful stories of hope! 

Seeking His Love
Pre-order link: 

Kindle Edition167 pages
Expected publication: February 12th 2019 by Flowing Stream Books 
(first published October 1st 2010)

My Review
4 STARS!!!

Turansky has written a sweet novel about forgiveness and redemption. Vivid word pictures put me right in Fairhaven, making me want to visit this quaint town and get to know its residents.

Rachel has a heart for the Lord and follows him with a sincerity I admired. My favorite thought of hers was this—But she was definitely not going to let herself get carried away with romantic daydreams about him. She had no idea where he stood spiritually. And that was much more important than outward appearance or superficial kindness.

I was glad to see a heroine with godly character and self-control, which of course comes from her knowledge of the Word of God and her relationship with Christ. Is Rachel perfect? No. She has flaws like we all do but as Christians we are called to be set apart from the world and this is how she behaves–set apart.

Cam has suffered a devastating loss and basically walked away from the Lord. When he comes to the realization that God has never left him, his restoration is moving and realistic. I liked Cam’s character a lot.


My review is based on a revised and updated version of Seeking His Love provided by the author. I read the original back in 2010 or 2011. No review required. No compensation received.



GIVEAWAY!!!

I am giving away a $5.00 Amazon e-gift card to one of my blog readers because I appreciate y'all and it's almost Valentine's Day!!!

Please be sure and leave an email address in the comments so I can send you your e-gift card in a timely manner. I won't hunt anyone down if there is no email! I'll draw a winner on Valentine's Day!!! 

It would also be lovely if you followed Stuff and Nonsense through the FOLLOWER (GFC) widget in the sidebar but it isn't a requirement. Just a nice thing to do. :-)

I am really not up on all the technicalities of retrieving an e-gift card but if you think you can retrieve it, then by all means enter the giveaway.  (Legal stuff about giveaways is here.)



Friday, February 8, 2019

Review ~ A Return of Devotion (Haven Manor #2) by Kristi Ann Hunter


Paperback352 pages
Published February 5th 2019 by Bethany House Publishers 

Daphne Blakemoor was perfectly happy living in her own secluded world for twelve years. She had everything she needed—loved ones, a true home, and time to indulge her imagination. But when ownership of the estate where she works as a housekeeper passes on, and the new marquis has an undeniable connection to her past, everything she's come to rely upon is threatened.


William, Marquis of Chemsford's main goal in life is to be the exact opposite of his father. Starting a new life in the peace and quiet of the country sounds perfect until his housekeeper turns his life upside down.

They've spent their lives hiding from the past. Can they find the courage to face their deepest wounds and, perhaps, find a new path for the future together?


My Review
4 STARS

Regency is my favorite genre to read. I like the intertwining of the culture with mystery and romance and manners. When the setting is an out-of-the-way manor house used to house illegitimate children of the upper crust, my interest is piqued. These things happened. A lot. This is not a subject that is delved into in any of the books I had previously read until this series from Hunter. While it may sound slightly uncomfortable, the matter is dealt with compassion and sensitivity.

William, Lord Chemsford, was a delight to read. When he meets Daphne, whom we met in book one, A Defense of Honor, his thoughts made me chuckle more than once. She comes off as slightly dimwitted (okay maybe a lot dimwitted) and says and does strange things to keep him occupied and away from certain areas of the house. Of course, he begins to become suspicious as to why and then the game is on. His character is sort of gruff but then his true gentlemanly nature comes out and oh my. He is something!

There are sections of the book that seemed to drag with too much info but then I am a dialogue driven reader. Truly, the banter was such fun to read I would have liked more of that. It’s an entertaining and moving story though and one I highly encourage fans of Regency to read. I look forward to the third book coming out this fall. That will feature Jess and if you’ve read either of these books, you know she is a spitfire!

I was provided an electronic copy of the book through Netgalley and the publisher. No review required. No compensation received.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Anticipated Summer Read #1

COMING SUMMER 2019


When one Coast Guard officer is found dead and another goes missing, Coast Guard Investigative Service special agent Finn Walker faces his most dangerous crime yet. His only clues are what little evidence remains aboard the dead officer's boat, and the direction the clues point to will test Finn and the Guard to their limits.

When investigative reporter--and Finn's boss's sister--Gabby Rowley arrives, her unrelenting questions complicate an already volatile situation. Now that she's back, the tug on Finn's heart is strong, but with the risks she's taking for her next big story, he fears she might not live through it.

Thrown together by the heinous crime, Finn and Gabby can't ignore the sparks or judgments flying between them. But will they be able to see past their preconceptions long enough to track down an elusive killer, or will they become his next mark?


Sounds pretty good, huh? I guess being under the weather has me thinking about sunshine
and warmer temperatures. :-)


I've read Pettrey's Chesapeake Valor Series and highly recommend it. It has all the elements of good suspense–danger, action and intrigue with just the right amount of romance thrown in to keep you reading for hours and hours on end. I read the entire series of books back to back and loved them!

What book/s are you looking forward to reading this summer?