Tag Archive: books

Leslie Gould wins again! 5 star read!

Leslie Gould’ newest book, “Becoming Bea” is a winner!becoming bea

Bea Zook has been leading a sheltered life, she’s a happy homebody. When faced with leaving her beloved Lancaster County home for Montana, she takes a wild step, getting a job as a mother’s helper to a family with triplets!

The only problem, she will  have be around Ben Rupp, the one man who can really set her on edge with his teasing and attentions.

Will they be able to work it out?

I loved this story! Gould’s “Bea” reminds me a lot of myself, as I watch her gain self-confidence and independence.

The story is well paced and keeps the reader wanting to know ‘what next’.

Mark Miller’s new science fantasy “A Dragon’s Kiss”

Dragon's Kiss, ADragon’s Kiss, A by Mark Miller
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Kelan and Brietta meet as pre-teens and form a bond of friendship. Torn away from each other by circumstance or fate, they meet again some years later. Kelan has discovered his ability as a magician, Brietta is now a dragon hunter.
As they travel together, new thoughts, emotions and capabilities spring up between them.
Working with each other, will they be able to defeat the dragons who are destroying their land?

View all my reviews

It’s not your ‘everyday’ romance! Mary Connealy takes a story line and moves it along like the avalanche that begins this tale of suspicion, intrigue and mystery in post Civil-War Texas.

Following Dr. Dare Riker and the young widow, Glynna Greer through the maze of questions and surprising answers in a search for truth with a spice of romance thrown in.
Can the would be assassin really be Glynna’s son?

I give this book 4.5 stars and would recommend it to my lady friends and those gents I know who enjoy a good western tale as well.
I received this book free to read and give an honest opinion.

As you might know, I read a lot of other blogs. This particular one by author Ann H. Gabhart, features some things close to my heart. My daughter Tara and St. Jude Hospital. Here is a little tease:
“But before we head out on a new trail, we’ve got a few more birthday noise makers to blow and one more story to share.

Did you ever have your own bicycle? I didn’t. I had a hand me down that needed tires, my inspiration for Jocie’s old bike in Scent of Lilacs. Tara left this story in a comment on a post here, but I wanted to share it again.

“My best birthday memory. As a second child I spent a lot of time in hand me downs. Clothes, shoes, bicycles. My older sister had a very different style than I did, so her old blue bicycle with a banana seat was not my favorite. Every trip to town for groceries would see me at the Western Auto adjacent to the grocery store, riding around and around a little yellow BMX bike. Every year, I participated in (and rocked!) the St Judes Bike-a-thon in our tiny, tiny town and I wanted nothing more than to NEVER have to ride that hand me down blue bike again to do so. I have NO idea how many miles I logged on that little yellow bike just riding up and down the aisles until Mom was done at the grocery store.”
I would love it if you go over to Ann’s blog and read the whole story.

You might like to check out some of Ann’s books and her knowledge of the Shaker religion while you visit there too.

I would like to point out, Tara might have preferred to use her motorcycle to log St. Jude miles as the years progressed, but that yellow BMX covered many, nt just for St.Jude, it was well known on the byways around Sunrise Ridge for several years.

It’s Super September!

super september
Yes, it is a super month for author friend Amanda Flower/Isabella Alan! With three new books coming out this month, she still took time to write a guest post to share here. She wants to tell a bit more about what we can expect in the future for Andi Boggs and friends. Andi is the star of her new series for young adults. I loaned my copy to two young friends who were delighted with this book. Christmas is coming, if you have a teen reader, this would be a great gift!

What does future hold for Andi and residents of Killdeer, Ohio?
By Amanda Flower

When I wrote Andi Unexpected, I knew I wanted it to be a series. As a child, I loved reading series and following my favorite characters through several if not dozens of novels. As an adult, series, especially mystery, are still the books that I gravitate to as a reader. Even though I knew I wanted Andi Boggs to star in a series, I didn’t know what the series would look like because I was so focused on the first book.

However when the deadline for the second novel started to loom over my head, I thought about it a lot because I wanted the series to have shared themes and an overall story arc. I can’t say too much because my editor hasn’t even read the second book yet, but I can share some broad ideas. Overall Andi Boggs and her sister Bethany will continue to deal with the death of parents and adjust to life in a rural town. Their young aunt Amelie will adjust to being a parent of a middle schooler and high schooler, and Colin and Andi will rely on each other more to solve their cases. Another aspect that will repeat in the novels is some historical element related to an event in Killdeer or a person that lives there. I love local history, so I have had great fun making up local history for a fictional town.

When I was in seventh grade all Ohio students were required to take Ohio history. Now, that may sound like a boring subject, but for whatever reason my twelve year old self found it fascinating. I got a kick out of learning about the Western Reserve, the Underground Railroad, how many presidents came from Ohio—eight if you’re curious. That love of Ohio history never went away. In fact, one summer during college I worked as an historical interpreter at a living history museum in the state. I wove Shaker style baskets and told tourists what it was like to live in Ohio during the pioneer days. It was a fascinating job, and you can bet I will write about that experience some day. Perhaps in another series. So many ideas, so little time…

It’s SUPER SEPTEMBER! Amanda Flower (also writing as Isabella Alan) has three novels releasing in September 2013. To celebrate, she is giving away an authentic Amish Quilt hand-stitched by Amish in Holmes County, Ohio.

Enter to Win an Authentic Amish Quilt from author Amanda Flower! Click here to Enter!

Follow Amanda on Social Media at: Facebook Twitter Goodreads Pinterest
Follow Amanda’s alter ego Isabella on Facebook

An Interview with Amanda Flower

I recently had the opportunity of interviewing two people at once, Amanda Flower, author of the new young adult novel, Andi Unexpected and her alter ego Isabella Alan author of Murder, Plain and Simple, an Amish Quilt Shop novel. These two books are the beginnings of new mystery series for her.
It was a pleasure to read these books and I highly recommend both.

Here are my Questions and her answers.

1. Of course the obvious, you have had other books published, what is your favorite genre?
Mystery. Mystery is definitely my favorite.

2. Does that extend to what you read as well?
Yes, I do tend to read more mystery than anything else. I love a good whodunit.

3. Are Andi, Bethany and Colin in ‘Andi Unexpected’ based on young people you know?
I never really thought about it before but Colin is a lot like my brother, Andy. He’s super smart and always did great in math and science. Now, he’s an electrical engineer who works on managing the electrical grid for this region of the country. In a different way, Colin reminds me of one of my best friends when I was Andi’s age. He lived in the house across the street. We spent most of our childhood riding our bikes through the neighborhood along with Andy my brother and making up adventures. Since my close friend when I was twelve was a boy, I wanted that for Andi the character too. It’s a different dynamic than you have with a girl best friend.

4. Will you be moving on to new YA projects and characters?
Ummm… probably. *wink, wink* I can’t really say anything about it yet, but it is likely.

5. You also are writing two series of Amish based books, how do you come up with ideas for three series at once?
I think one of my problems as a writer is I have too many ideas. There are so many novels that I want to write. I am constantly flooding my agent with pitches and proposals for children and adults. The only thread they have in common is they are all mysteries. See answer number one. 😉

6. How do you manage to keep the characters/plots of all 3 series separated?
That can be a challenge. I always write in first person, so I try hard to make each main character sound different. For example, all of them are witty, but I kicked that up a notch for Angie Braddock making her lightly sarcastic at times. Chloe Humphrey in my mind is very kind and sweet. Andi is super smart and curious. I try to focus on that one defining characteristic of the protagonist to make them sound different to the reader.

7. Angie, the main character in Murder, Plain and Simple has a French bulldog, do you have pets? What kind?
I have two cats. A gray and white part Russian Blue named Reepicheep aka Cheeps, and a tuxedo cat names Mister Tumnus aka Tummy. Both were named after characters out of the Chronicles of Narnia, which are some of my favorite children’s book. When I a young child, my family had a collie mix named Lady. She was so sweet. I haven’t had a dog since but have always wanted a Frenchie. Right now, I am waiting until I can be home more often so I can be the best dog mom. Cheeps and Tummy are okay if I am gone most of the day, but a dog couldn’t be alone 8-10 hours. So, I put a Frenchie in the Amish Quilt Shop series as consolation dog to myself. When I do get my Frenchie one day, I hope he’s just like Oliver.

It’s SUPER SEPTEMBER! Amanda Flower (also writing as Isabella Alan) has three novels releasing in September 2013. To celebrate, she is giving away an authentic Amish Quilt hand-stitched by Amish in Holmes County, Ohio.

Enter to Win an Authentic Amish Quilt from author Amanda Flower! Click here to Enter! http://amandaflower.com/Giveaways.html

Follow Amanda on Social Media at: Facebook Twitter Goodreads Pinterest
Follow Amanda’s alter ego Isabella on Facebook

Well, my friends, it is still raining. The plinking or thundering sound of drops on the roof has sort of lost its pleasure. Walking on wet sponges was never much of a favorite thing to do and looking at the creek rushing where our road is supposed to be does not fill Hubby or me with elation.
Now that I have had my chance to grump and grumble, I will tell myself the blessings. I do not have to do laundry for a family and try to dry outside on a line. There was a time…
I don’t have to ‘go’ anywhere. We have food, water, a generator (just in case) and plenty of fuel for cooking.
I have crafts and books to keep me from going ‘stir crazy’.
There is the computer and phone for ‘outside contact’.
There have been moments when the sun has come out, sparkling on the water drops and a rainbow has arched across the sky. So I know that there is blue sky and God has not forgotten his promise.
I think the blessings outweigh the inconvenience.
I will wait, the rain will stop, and no doubt there will be a day we will wish for it to return.

Years ago, I learned this adage: If you don’t feel close to God, who moved? Can a cat, sent by God, help bring people back into God’s grace and appreciate His mercy?

In ‘The Cat That God Sent’, author Jim Kraus brings Petey, a stray cat, into the lives of the Church of the Open Door in the small town of Coudersport PA. to help answer that. Pastor Jake Wilkerson, homeless young woman, Tassie, Dr. Emma, the local vet, Speedy Davis, the local hermit, as well as many others are reached by things that happen, associated with Petey.

Events unfold that bring out the dark secrets in several lives, and proves that God did not move.

The book moves well, keeps the reader interested and ends on a note that made me want a sequel.

I received this book free from Abingdon Press to read and provide an honest personal review. I chose to give it 5 stars and would recommend it to others.

I recently read Nancy’s book Unbreakable, which made me really think about some things in my own life. I am so pleased to be able to give you a little information about her and some of what is going on with her writing career. Don’t forget to go over to her newsletter, read it and sign up for a chance to win a copy of her newest book when it comes out!
Nancy Mehl’s first novel was published in 2001. Since then thirteen books have followed, including an omnibus edition, Cozy in Kansas, which contains three of her previously published Ivy Towers’s mysteries. Book three in the series, For Whom the Wedding Bell Tolls, won the American Christian Fiction Writers Mystery Book of the Year award in 2009. The first book in her Road to Kingdom Series, Inescapable, released in July of 2012. It was followed by Unbreakable, which came out in February of 2013. The last book in this series, Unforeseeable, will hit bookstores in September. She is currently working on a brand new a Mennonite-themed suspense series for Bethany House Publishing.
Nancy’s main writing interests lie in mystery, although her Mennonite novels, The Harmony Series and The Kingdom Series, lean more toward the romantic suspense genre. “There’s a touch of mystery in everything I write,” she says. “The truth is that the lines between suspense and mystery are closer than most people realize. I think the mystery influence will always show up in my books”
So far, Nancy’s novels have all been set in Kansas. “I love Kansas,” she says. “We’re a lot more interesting than people think. Using Kansas in my novels is easy. We have everything – big cities, small towns, rolling hills, rich farmland, culture, history, odd locations (look up The Garden of Eden in Lucas, Kansas!) and a friendly hometown feeling. “We also enjoy all four seasons. This allows me to set my stories in different weather conditions. Winter is my favorite season. Throw lots of snow in a story and your plot can suddenly go in an interesting direction.”
Nancy lives in Wichita, Kansas with her husband Norman, and her very active puggle, Watson. She has one grown son, Danny, who is an award winning graphic designer. Danny lives with his beautiful wife, Shaen, and their son, Aidan, Nancy’s first grandchild, in Missouri. Besides writing, Nancy spends her time with a volunteer organization, Wichita Homebound Outreach. WHO is actively involved in the lives of low-income, elderly people in the Wichita area. Nancy is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America. She and her husband attend Believer’s Tabernacle.
Readers can learn more about Nancy through her Web site: http://www.nancymehl.com. She has a newsletter located at: http://www.nancymehl.blogspot.com, and is a part of another blog, The Suspense Sisters, along with several other popular suspense authors. She is also very active on Facebook.