04_Phoenix Rising_Blog Tour Banner_FINAL

I’m excited to take part today in a shoutout for PHOENIX RISING by Hunter S. Jones. If you know me, you know I am a Tudor fan and I LOVE books about Henry’s wives. I haven’t read this one yet, but it’s on my tbr list!

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Here’s what HFVBT has to say:

About Phoenix Rising

Publication Date: May 19, 2015
MadeGlobal Publishing
eBook; ASIN: B00X806742Genre: Historical FictionAdd to GR Button

The last hour of Anne Boleyn’s life…

Court intrigue, revenge and all the secrets of the last hour are revealed as one queen falls and another rises to take her place on destiny’s stage.

A young Anne Boleyn arrives at the court of King Henry VIII. She is to be presented at the Shrovetide pageant, le Château Vert. The young and ambitious Anne has no idea that a chance encounter before the pageant will lead to her capturing the heart of the king. What begins as a distraction becomes his obsession and leads to her destruction.

Love, hate, loyalty and betrayal come together in a single dramatic moment… the execution of a queen. The history of England will be changed for ever.

Praise for Phoenix Rising

“Compelling, captivating and moving.” Claire Ridgway, The Anne Boleyn Files

“Thought provoking, esoteric and heart wrenching.” – R.J.Askew, blogger, reviewer, author and journalist

Phoenix Rising Available at


About the Author

03_Hunter S. Jones_Author

Deb Hunter publishes as Hunter S. Jones. Her best-selling novel, “September Ends” won awards for Best Independently Published Novel and Best Romance, based on its unique blending of poetry and prose. Her story “The Fortune Series” received best-selling status on Amazon in the Cultural Heritage and Historical Fiction categories. She has been published by H3O Eco mag, LuxeCrush, Chattanooga Times-Free Press, and is now a freelance contributor for the Atlanta Journal Constitution. She has recently been accepted into the prestigious Rivendell Writers Colony. Her arts, music and culture blogs on ExpatsPost.com are filled with eclectic stories regarding music, writing, the arts and climate awareness. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her Scottish born husband. Her undergrad degree is in History with an emphasis on the English Renaissance and Reformation.

For more information please visit Hunter S. Jones’ website. You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Follow the Tour!

Phoenix Rising Blog Tour

Tuesday, May 19
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Wednesday, May 20
Guest Post & Giveaway at The Anne Boleyn Files
Spotlight at The Never-Ending Book

Thursday, May 21
Review at Book Drunkard

Friday, May 22
Spotlight at A Literary Vacation
Spotlight at What Is That Book About

Saturday, May 23
Spotlight at Curling up by the Fire

Monday, May 25
Review at JulzReads
Spotlight at Just One More Chapter

Tuesday, May 26
Review at Book Lovers Paradise
Spotlight at CelticLady’s Reviews

Wednesday, May 27
Review at Book Nerd
Guest Post at The Readers Hollow

Thursday, May 28
Review at Bookramblings

Friday, May 29
Review at The Reading Queen

Saturday, May 30
Review at Historical Fiction Obsession
Spotlight at Beth’s Book Nook Blog

Sunday, May 31
Review at Genre Queen
Spotlight at Unshelfish

Quick Review: EENY MEENY by M. J. Arlidge


I picked up EENY MEENY through Net Galley as I can’t resist a good British mystery! This is the first book in the DI Helen Grace series.

A bizarre serial killer is on the loose and it’s one that doesn’t fit the typical profile. She is female and abducts two victims, letting them decide who will live and who will die. DI Helen Grace is determined to discover just who this is and how the victims are all connected. However, she begins to realize that the connection they all share is one to her.

I enjoyed this first installment in this series. If you read me you know I have a thing for British mysteries. Helen is a strong character, a loner, a woman with a dark past. The mystery was well-plotted and kept me guessing up to the end.

It’s a keeper!

Thank you, Net Galley and Penguin, for my review copy!

Review: THE TAPESTRY by Nancy Bilyeau


I recently received a review copy of THE TAPESTRY through Touchstone Publicity and Simon and Schuster. This is the third novel in a trilogy, centering on tapestry seamstress Joanna Stafford in the time of King Henry VIII. I chose this title because, if you know me you know this already, I LOVE Tudor stories and that time in British history!

Joanna Stafford is a fascinating heroine: former novice, highly intelligent, left at the altar, gifted creator of tapestries, target of a plot to kill her. Joanna is called to the court of King Henry VIII to create some tapestries for him and she has barely arrived when someone tries to kill her. Throughout her time at court – actually all throughout this book – someone is following her, watching her, trying to take her down. She and the man sent to guard her try to figure it out (in time!). Meanwhile, her very close friend is none other than Katherine Howard. The story starts with Henry being married to Anne of Cleves, but I think most of us know what is going to happen. Joanna tries to protect her friend and keep her from getting entangled with this most powerful man and ruler.

All is all, this was a great book. The writing is superb and the story moves along – in some spots faster than others – it kept my interest throughout.

This title can be read as a stand alone – though I will admit to wanting to get the first two novels, too, as I enjoyed this one so much.

Thank you again for my copy!

You can find this book online or in stores near you.

HFVB Tour – THE SAFFRON CROCUS by Alison McMahan

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Here I am today to blog about the YA book: THE SAFFRON CROCUS by Alison McMahan. This book has mystery, murder, and adventure in 1600’s Venice. When the young protagonist’s voice teacher mysteriously dies, she tries to find out who killed her and why, opening up a lot of closed doors and secrets from the past.

This was an enjoyable and exciting read, but my favorite part of it was learning about what life was life in Venice in the 1600’s. Isabella’s experience with music and opera, the life of a castrati musician, “kept” women, and the treatment of Jews in Venice at that time all played a role in this novel and kept me interested and reading.

Thank you for my copy!

Here’s what HFVBT has to say:

Publication Date: December 13, 2014
Black Opal Books
eBook; 306p

Genre: Young Adult/Historical Mystery/Romance

Add to GR Button

Winner of the 2014 Rosemary Award for Best Historical for Young Adults.

Venice, 1643. Isabella, fifteen, longs to sing in Monteverdi’s Choir, but only boys (and castrati) can do that. Her singing teacher, Margherita, introduces her to a new wonder: opera! Then Isabella finds Margherita murdered. Now people keep trying to kill Margherita’s handsome rogue of a son, Rafaele.

Was Margherita killed so someone could steal her saffron business? Or was it a disgruntled lover, as Margherita—unbeknownst to Isabella—was one of Venice’s wealthiest courtesans?

Or will Isabella and Rafaele find the answer deep in Margherita’s past, buried in the Jewish Ghetto?

Isabella has to solve the mystery of the Saffron Crocus before Rafaele hangs for a murder he didn’t commit, though she fears the truth will drive her and the man she loves irrevocably apart.


Who knew a singing career would be this much trouble?

“Rafaele!” She flew into the garret. “Piero, it was so wonderful, wait until I tell you!”

The stool next to the bed was knocked over. The tray with the genepy bottle was on the floor, one of the cups broken. The fat candle that had been burning next to Rafaele’s bed had been flung to the other side of the room.. Canvases were strewn all over the floor, some of them slashed, and many of Master Strozzi’s jars of paint elements were broken.

Did Piero and Rafaele have a fight? She quickly suppressed the thought. Who would get into a fight with a man who was already injured?

Something else must have happened.

She walked across the garret. “Piero? Rafaele, are you here?”

Rafaele was not in the bed. The sheets and blankets she had piled on top of him were strewn everywher. Blood-stained sheets spilled over the edge of the pallet. There was a pile of clothes on the floor.

She walked around to get a closer look.

Not clothes. It was Piero. Face down, one arm stretched out before him, as if in supplication.

A puddle of blood under him.


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Praise for The Saffron Crocus

“I adored this beautifully written, passionate book. The Saffron Crocus is a glittering, thrilling opera of a novel that plucked my heartstrings and kept me reading at fever pitch. Brava, Alison McMahan! Encore!” -Nancy Holder, New York Times Bestselling Author of the Wicked Saga

Buy the eBook

Black Opal Books
Amazon US
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble

About the Author

03_Alison McMahan Author

Alison McMahan chased footage for her documentaries through jungles in Honduras and Cambodia, favelas in Brazil and racetracks in the U.S. She brings the same sense of adventure to her award-winning books of historical mystery and romantic adventure for teens and adults. Her latest publication is The Saffron Crocus, a historical mystery for young. Murder, Mystery & Music in 17th Century Venice.

She loves hearing from readers!

Author Links

Webpage for The Saffron Crocus

The Saffron Crocus Blog Tour & Book Blast Schedule

Monday, April 13
Book Blast at Genre Queen

Thursday, April 16
Guest Post & Giveaway at Let Them Read Books

Friday, April 17
Interview at Mythical Books

Monday, April 20
Review at Flashlight Commentary

Tuesday, April 21
Review at History From a Woman’s Perspective

Wednesday, April 22
Guest Post at History From a Woman’s Perspective

Tuesday, April 28
Book Blast at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, April 29
Guest Post & Giveaway at So Many Precious Books, So Little Time

Tuesday, May 5
Review at Book Nerd

Wednesday, May 6
Review at Just One More Chapter

Thursday, May 7
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Friday, May 8
Guest Post at Just One More Chapter

Saturday, May 9
Book Blast at Romantic Historical Lovers

Tuesday, May 12
Review at The True Book Addict

Wednesday, May 13
Guest Post & Giveaway at Historical Fiction Connection

Thursday, May 14
Review at Book Babe
Guest Post at What Is That Book About

Monday, May 25
Review at Beth’s Book Nook Blog

Wednesday, May 27
Book Blast at CelticLady’s Reviews

Thursday, May 28
Review at The Lit Bitch
Review at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Monday, June 1
Review at Broken Teepee

Tuesday, June 2
Guest Post at The Maiden’s Court

Friday, June 5
Spotlight & Giveaway at Jorie Loves a Story

Quick Review: MORTOM by Erik Therme

I found this little nugget of a mystery on Net Galley – mysterious clues, missing treasure, deceased family member who was estranged. It had all the elements of a good mystery in my opinion.

In MORTOM, Andy and his twin sister Kate find out that a cousin they haven’t been in touch with for years has died, and he has left everything to Andy. This is odd, since they weren’t close, but “everything” includes a key and a scavenger hunt to find the valuables. Deceased cousin Craig was particularly fond of crosswords and other puzzles and he’s created a complicated set of clues and information to guide Andy. While Kate wants Andy to leave well enough alone, Andy is almost obsessed with finding out what happened to Craig and why and what he was hiding. The small town of Mortom is hiding some secrets, and some of them have to do with Andy’s family.

I really enjoyed this novel, the debut for Mr. Therme. I couldn’t put it down and I love stories where you have to figure out clues and guess at things. I am thinking there will be another book coming with these characters and I look forward to it.

Find this book online or at an indie or library near you:


Thanks, Net Galley and Thomas Mercer, for my review copy!

Saturday Snapshot: The Bolton Geranium

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Just wanted to share my “Bolton Geranium” with readers today!

I LOVE the history of this unique flower. In the late 1880’s, a young man, Arthur Miner, brought a cutting home from a conservatory to his wife Aurilla. She propagated it and shared it with friends and neighbors. It became known as “the Bolton Geranium” as so many people here in Bolton (MA) had it. Then in 1970, there was only one surviving plant left. Florence Sawyer (a true mainstay of this town) saved it and along with Esther Whitcomb they kept it going and producing. The plant is sold each year by the historical society in town and I was so happy to get two this year! No two petals are alike!

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Melinda at http://www.westmetromommyreads.com.  See her site for participation details!

Robert Wheeler’s HEMINGWAY’S PARIS


I recently was at a book event at the Concord Bookshop and Robert Wheeler sat near me. When I told him I had heard of his book and planned to read it, he pulled one from his bag and gave it to me as a gift. I was thrilled!

This is a beautiful book – coffee table worthy – of pictures of Paris and connections to Ernest Hemingway and his time there writing. For instance, there is a paragraph about Hemingway walking along the Seine as he worked out his plots, and then a picture of a walkway along the Seine. The pictures are beautiful and you can truly get a glimpse of what “Hemingway’s Paris” was like.

Loved this book! If you know me, you know I love Paris and one things I like to do is to think about how different famous people walked the same streets, were inspired by the same art, ate in the same cafés, etc. This book was perfect for me!

If you love Paris, Hemingway, or both – get this book for yourself and enjoy it at your leisure!

Thank you again for my surprise copy – I will treasure it!

Find it an in Indie near you – I am an Indie Bound affiliate:

Find it at an Indie near you! I am an Indie Bound Affiliate.

HFV Book Tour for MESABI PIONEERS by Russell Hill and Jeffrey Smith

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I’m blogging today as part of the Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tour for MESABI PIONEERS.
This novel gave me an insight into a period of history that I know little about: the search for iron ore in Northern Minnesota in the 1890’s. Arthur Maki is the main protagonist – a Finnish immigrant who has joined a work crew and hopes to reunite with his wife and young son before long. The group of characters is quite varied, and each has his own personality which is aptly portrayed. The men spend their days mining for ore and seeking new sources of ore – dangerous work. Tensions can be high and personalities clash.
Well-written and interesting, this story taught me about the Mesabi Iron Range — something I’m a bit embarrassed to say that I had never heard of!
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About Mesabi Pioneers
Publication Date: October 6, 2014
Lempi Publishing
Formats: eBook, Hardcover
238 Pages Genre: Historical Fiction
Add to GR Button
In the early 1890s, a group of brothers discovered iron ore in the dense pine woods of northern Minnesota. Mesabi Pioneers tells the story of the immigrants who dug that ore out of the ground, who carved towns from trees, and who built new lives for themselves and their families.
Arthur Maki, a Finnish immigrant known for his carpentry skills, has been hired by the persuasive and poetic Leonidas “Lon” Merritt to join a crew of explorers in the forest. From this remote and formidable locale, Arthur must construct a camp and foster a community into which he can bring his wife and son.
The camp, which the Merritts call Mountain Iron, sits on what Lon believes to be a huge lode of iron ore. However, the rest of the world thinks the Merritts are crazy. While Arthur builds a camp with a Chippewa Indian everyone calls Charlie and a French-Chippewa fur trader named Richardson, the other members of the team explore the surrounding woods for more caches of iron. When a second lode is discovered at Biwabik, Arthur and the rest of the crew know the finding is real. And the iron mining world knows it, too.
As the mine gets deeper and mining operations expand, the camp crowds with a diversity of ethnic and cultural groups. Tragedy strikes in ways large and small. And it is from the ashes of destruction that Arthur finds the community he has been seeking.

Praise for Mesabi Pioneers

“…a refreshingly enjoyable read… Hill and Smith kindle complicated emotions, important questions and a driving curiosity about Northern Minnesota’s Mesabi Iron Range.

The novel’s opening chapters give us a remarkable point of view, a vision of the Iron Range before it was anything like our modern understanding of the place. The size of the forest, the difficulty of travel, the majesty of the Missabe hills before they were opened up and moved like chess pieces: we see all of this in fresh prose.

[W]here “Mesabi Pioneers” thrills (at least for this student of Range history) is in its dramatic imagination of what people faced in the wilds of 1890s Mountain Iron, and how the mighty wheels of industrial commerce slowly crushed the spirits of the ambitious Merritt Brothers. Fiction, yes. But the spirit rings true. Knowing how it turns out in real life only enhances the reading of this book.”
-Aaron Brown, Hibbing Daily Tribune andminnesotabrown.com

“Hill and Smith pepper their story with some very good character development (this book is as much a story of Arthur Maki’s personal growth as it is anything else), plenty of sarcastic humor, and a good deal of research into a period never before explored in historical fiction. In their handling, the enterprising and occasionally cutthroat, bygone world of iron mining comes vividly alive. A strong debut installment.”
-Charlotte Kirsch, Historical Novel Society

“A wonderful book. I’d recommend it to anyone.”
-Scott Hall, KAXE, Northern Community Radio

“In Mesabi Pioneers, Jeffrey Smith has skillfully crafted a wonderful story that respects the historical facts while bringing the experience of these pioneers to life. The story of the Finns and Scandinavians who worked the iron ore mines and were joined by others from Cornwall, Wales, Ireland, Germany, Italy, and elsewhere is effectively told. This book is a steeped in the social history and physical geography of this region in Minnesota that played such a significant role in the economic rise of the United States. I understand that this is the first volume in a planned trilogy. I am already looking forward to the next volume. In a few words, this is good creative writing with an enjoyable style.”
-James Dilisio, author Maryland Geography

“What a fascinating story, with finely drawn characters and compelling subject matter. The authors take us inside the hearts and souls of newly arrived immigrant pioneers, full of hope and promise, who accomplished extraordinary feats under dire circumstances; and the Native Americans who watched their homeland undergo such dramatic and irrevocable chance. I learned such a lot about the history of the Iron Range territory in my native state. I highly recommend it.”
-Kathryn Leigh Scott, actress and author, Down and Out in Beverly Heels

About the Author

03_Jeffrey Smith Author

Jeffrey Smith began his love of letters at fourteen on a Smith-Corona electric typewriter borrowed from his father. He is a full-time writer, homemaker and stay-at-home parent in Berlin, Maryland. Also an accomplished distance runner, Jeffrey has completed 16 marathons, seven 24-hour relay races, and multiple ultra-runs, including several 100-mile races. He blogs about writing, running, and parenting at rustlingreed.com/blog.

For more information visit mesabiproject.com. Follow Mesabi Pioneers on Facebook and Twitter.

Thanks for making me part of the tour and for my review copy!
Here’s a You Tube video trailer about the book:

Litfuse Blog Tour for A LOVE LIKE OURS by Becky Wade and GIVEAWAY


Well — here I am as part of Becky Wade’s new release tour through Litfuse Publicity for A LOVE LIKE OURS.

If you know me, you know I enjoy Christian fiction, with a little bit of romance, but it’s not all I read and I have to find it relatable to me. All the summary info is below, but to give you a quick idea – this novel focuses on Lyndie James who reconnects with her childhood best friend, Jake Porter, when she comes to train horses for him. Jake is both emotionally and physically scarred from a tour of duty in Iraq. Will Lyndie break down his defenses to help him feel again?

Well, I’m not really doing it justice, because this book was a whole lot more. The other characters really made the book for me, especially Lyndie’s family, and her sister Molly with severe special needs. I loved her neighbor friend. I loved the Porter family. I loved how real these people felt. I loved how it was all about horses (and I’m not even a horse person).

Here’s the thing – I think I’m drawn to Christian fiction because it’s so redeeming. There’s often a message that no matter what mistakes you’ve made, no matter where you are in life, no matter how alone or lost you feel, that you are worth saving. Stories with this theme and the theme of self-forgiveness are often my favorite. This one was no exception.

This was my first Becky Wade book, but I just love Katie Ganshert and I know Katie loves Becky, so now I do, too! 🙂

Here’s info below on the book and a great giveaway that Becky is hosting (n.b. — sometimes with the free version of WordPress codes are stripped upon post publishing. So if something doesn’t link correctly, please look via my twitter feed @BethsBookBlog as I will cross-post).

Thank you for my review copy, via Net Galley, and having me be part of the tour!

About the book:
A Love Like Ours (Bethany House, May 2015)Former Marine Jake Porter has far deeper scars than the one that marks his face. He struggles with symptoms of PTSD, lives a solitary life, and avoids relationships.When Lyndie James, Jake’s childhood best friend, lands back in Holley, Texas, Jake cautiously hires her to exercise his Thoroughbreds. Lyndie is tender-hearted, fiercely determined, and afraid of nothing, just like she was as a child. Jake pairs her with Silver Leaf, a horse full of promise but lacking in results, hoping she can solve the mystery of the stallion’s reluctance to run.Though Jake and Lyndie have grown into very different adults, the bond that existed during their childhood still ties them together. Against Jake’s will, Lyndie’s sparkling, optimistic personality begins to tear down the walls he’s built around his heart. A glimmer of the hope he’d thought he’d lost returns, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend?

Purchase a copy:

About the author:

Becky Wade is a native of California who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and moved to Dallas. She published historical romances for the general market, took time off to raise her children, then felt God nudging her to pursue contemporary Christian fiction. Becky’s work has been a finalist for both a RITA and an INSPY Award.

Find Becky online: website, Facebook, Twitter

Follow the tour!

Blog Tour Schedule
Debra | 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, &, Sissy, Too!
Mary | the mary book
Gayle | A Love Like ours
Jalynn | A Simple Life, really?!
Erin | For Him and My Family
Megan | When life gets you down…read a book
Tima | Book Reviews by Tima
Sandra | Simple Harvest Reads
Marianne | Reviewing Nivels Online5/6/2015
Vicky | deal sharing aunt
Ruth | This That and the Other Thing
Kristie | Moments
Lydia | The Overweight Bookshelf
Cara | Cara Putman
Sarah | Running Through The Storms5/7/2015
Amanda | LoveandaPrayer
Cassandra | Cassandra M’s Place
Alyssa | Sunrise Avenue
Joan | Book Reviews from an Avid Reader
Karen | Ting’s Mom Books
Vera | Chat With Vera5/8/2015
Lena | A Christian Writers World
Lakin | Wonderou Reviews
Becky | Christian Chick’s Thoughts
Shannah | Faith * Love * Books5/9/2015
Renee | Black ‘n Gold Girl’s Book Spot
Julia | Avid Reader Reviews5/10/2015
Paige | Electively Paige
Dianna | Savings in Seconds
Joy | Splashes of Joy
Carole | The Power of Words
Cristi | Cristi’s Reviews
Ashley | Wandering the Pages
Margaret | The World As I See It

Jolene | Beauty In the Binding
Amanda | Inklings and Notions
Brooke | i blog 4 books
Kellie | Nothing Less
Colleen | A Bit Bookish

Shanae | Quirky Book Reviews
Michelle | I Hope YOu Dance
Jojo | JoJo’s Corner

Billy | Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer
Victor | Vic’s Media Room
Tara | This Sweet Life
Kav | Best Reads
Andrew | Andrew Smith’s Blog
Charity | aTransParentMom
Lisa | Living Echoes

Rachel | EmpowerMoms
Krista | Welcome to Married Life
Brittany | Britt Reads Fiction
Laura | Crafty Booksheeps
Heidi | Heidi Reads…
Kathleen | Reviews From The Heart
Hallie | Book by Book
Iola | Iola’s Christian Reads
Jennifer | Jen’s JOurney
Andi | Radiant Light

Deb | Positive Grace
Alison | Shortcut Saver
Margaret | Frugal-Shopping
Tressa | Wishful Endings
Amber | Seasons of Humility

Marcia | Cia Says
Suzanne | Cows and Lasers and Everything in Between

Jaime | The Mama Games
Leila | All Meant To Shine

Angela | A Busy Mom of Two
Nicki | Tracks and Chapters, Pages and Characters:Christian or Fiction?
Kathy | Book Reviews & More by Kathy

Shecki | Greatly Blessed
Heidi | Starts At Eight
Amy | the ramblings of miss aimymichelle
Terra | Heck Of A Bunch
Veronica | Veronica’s ‘Views
Beth-Anne | Book Reviews
Beth | Beth’s Book-Nook Blog

Lori | Morning Glories and Moonflowers
Faye | Labor Not in Vain
Paula | Grow Where You’re Planted
Angela | all grown up

April | Dixie n Dottie
Kemi | Homemaking Organized

Abbi | Christian Novels
Celena | The Traveling Sisterhood
Marissa | The Review Stew
Alison | NOVA Frugal Family
Deb | Debs book review

Jenny | Book Reviews By Jenny

Cheryl | cherylbbookblog
Lindsey | Lindsey Bell: Faith and Family

Krystal | glamour girl reviews
Amanda | The Talbert Report
Stacey | WORD Up!
Rebekah | Caffeinated Christian Raves – N – Reviews
Rachelle | Inspiring Daring
Shirley | A Mom After God’s Own Heart
Anna | Anna Weaver Books

And here’s exciting giveaway news!!

Love Like Ours Becky WadeFall in love with Becky Wade‘s new book, A Love Like Ours, a story of healing, romance, and cowboys. A glimmer of the hope Jake thought he’d lost returns when Lyndie lands back in Texas, but fears and regrets still plague him. Will Jake ever be able to love Lyndie like she deserves, or is his heart too shattered to mend?

To celebrate the release of her new book, Becky is giving away a $100 cash card and a book-inspired prize pack!


One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A $100 cash card
  • A copy of A Love Like Ours
  • A copy of the Secretariat DVD
  • A scarf
  • A dog-tag/cross keychain
  • A pair of earrings
  • A Scarf
  • A Texas-shaped cutting board
  • A Jake Porter mug
love like ours - prize pack

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on May 26th. Winner will be announced May 27th on Becky’s site.


Audiobook Review: PEOPLE OF THE BOOK by Geraldine Brooks


Several years ago, my older sister sent me an email that said, “Run, do not walk, to get this book and read it!”. It was PEOPLE OF THE BOOK by Geraldine Brooks. I got it from the library and read about the first 30 pages and thought “Snoozefest”. I could not get into it. I was puzzled because honestly whenever either of my sisters tell me they love a book I almost always love it, too.

So I saw the audiobook at the library a few weeks ago and thought, “Maybe I should give this one a try again.” I LOVED Brooks’ Pulitzer Prize-winning MARCH and also her CALEB’S CROSSING. I popped it in and started listening. After about an hour my main thought was:


This is an EXCELLENT book. I can only imagine I was highly distracted when I tried to read it before (that happens to me. Life gets in the way).

Here’s the Amazon summary (this book came out in 2008 and has just under 400 pages):

From the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of March, the journey of a rare illuminated manuscript through centuries of exile and war

In 1996, Hanna Heath, an Australian rare-book expert, is offered the job of a lifetime: analysis and conservation of the famed Sarajevo Haggadah, which has been rescued from Serb shelling during the Bosnian war. Priceless and beautiful, the book is one of the earliest Jewish volumes ever to be illuminated with images. When Hanna, a caustic loner with a passion for her work, discovers a series of tiny artifacts in its ancient binding—an insect wing fragment, wine stains, salt crystals, a white hair—she begins to unlock the book’s mysteries. The reader is ushered into an exquisitely detailed and atmospheric past, tracing the book’s journey from its salvation back to its creation.

In Bosnia during World War II, a Muslim risks his life to protect it from the Nazis. In the hedonistic salons of fin-de-siècle Vienna, the book becomes a pawn in the struggle against the city’s rising anti-Semitism. In inquisition-era Venice, a Catholic priest saves it from burning. In Barcelona in 1492, the scribe who wrote the text sees his family destroyed by the agonies of enforced exile. And in Seville in 1480, the reason for the Haggadah’s extraordinary illuminations is finally disclosed. Hanna’s investigation unexpectedly plunges her into the intrigues of fine art forgers and ultra-nationalist fanatics. Her experiences will test her belief in herself and the man she has come to love.

Inspired by a true story, People of the Book is at once a novel of sweeping historical grandeur and intimate emotional intensity, an ambitious, electrifying work by an acclaimed and beloved author.

Me again — I was fascinated with this book — the characters, the mystery, the history, the story. The writing, as with all of Brooks’ novels, was well-crafted. The audiobook version had 12 CD’s and was aptly narrated by Edwina Wren (who does a great job with accents!).

So, in the words of my sister, “Run, don’t walk, to get this book!”

Here’s a You Tube book trailer: