Source: Publisher

Autumn Masquerade Blog Tour

16 Oct, 2015 by in autumn masquerade, josi kilpack, timeless regency Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Autumn Masquerade Blog Tour

Autumn Masquerade

by Donna Hatch, Josi S. Kilpack, Nancy Campbell Allen
Series: Timeless Regency Collection
Published by Amazon Digital Services on October 1, 2015
Genres: Adult, Clean Romance, Historical Fiction
Pages: 235
Format: eBook
four-stars
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
Amazon Top 100 in Regency Romance**
**Amazon Top 50 in Victorian Romance**

From the publisher of the #1 Amazon bestselling A Timeless Romance Anthology series in Clean Romance.

Join three bestselling Regency romance authors, Josi S. Kilpack, Donna Hatch, and Nancy Allen, for three new Regency romance novellas in AUTUMN MASQUERADE.

A MERRY DANCE by Josi S. Kilpack. When Lila overhears her uncle talking about a man coming to look for property in the county, she doesn’t think twice, until her uncle says he hopes Lila will find enough interest to marry the man. How can she marry someone named Mortimer Luthford, not to mention that his advanced age of thirty-three, and especially since she’s already in love with her absent cousin Neville? But when Mortimer arrives, Lila has to try every trick known to women to act not interested in the rather fascinating man, which proves a very difficult façade to maintain.

UNMASKING THE DUKE by Donna Hatch. The last thing Hannah Palmer wants to do is flirt with men in a crowded ballroom, but when her sister throws a Masquerade Ball, Hannah can’t say no to the invitation and takes comfort behind a mask. She dances with a charming masked man, matching him wit for wit. When the glorious evening culminates in a kiss, and the two remove their masks, Hannah is horrified to discover the man she’s been flirting with all night is her most despised neighbor, the Duke of Suttenberg. No matter how charming the duke was at the ball, and how wonderful the kiss, he is the last man she’d ever accept.

WHAT’S IN A NAME by Nancy Campbell Allen. Penelope Timely has a terrible secret. She’s been writing letters to the Duke of Wilmington, pretending to be her ever-proper twin sister, Persephone. Now, the duke has written that he’ll be coming for the Autumn Masquerade Ball and Festival. Penelope will have to continue the charade while the duke is in town in order to protect her sister. The Duke of Wilmington isn’t fooled for a moment, but instead of confessing that he knows about the deception, he finds himself utterly charmed by Penelope and jumps into the game of deception to see how far the twin sisters will take it.

Other Timeless Regency Collections:
A Midwinter Ball (Coming December 2015)
Spring in Hyde Park (Coming March 2016)
Summer House Party (Coming June 2016)
A Country Christmas (Coming October 2016)

The timing of the release of Autumn Masquerade is perfect. Pick this one up for a reading by the fireplace with some mulled cider. The setting: Regency Era, the season: Fall, the characters: all dressed up for a Masquerade ball. Each of these stories is unique, clean and well written. They are long enough to give the reader a full taste and the plot line has time to fully unfold. I loved that they are short enough to digest in one sitting and that this time there are only three stories in the anthology so you don’t feel rushed. Well-known, experienced authors offer up historical fiction at its finest.

Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/TimelessRomanceAnthologies

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A Timeless Collection~ Annette Lyon Collection

31 Jul, 2015 by in adult, annette lyon, novellas, timeless romance Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

A Timeless Collection~ Annette Lyon Collection

Annette Lyon Collection

by Annette Lyon
Published by Amazon Digital Services on July 3, 2015
Genres: Adult, Clean Romance
Pages: 279
Format: eARC
three-half-stars
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
The ANNETTE LYON COLLECTION contains brand new contemporary romance novella OUR SONG, as well as five hand-picked readers’ and reviewers’ favorites of Annette’s popular Timeless Romance Anthology novellas. Readers will love this selection of three contemporary and three historical romance novellas.

In OUR SONG, a charming romance novella, Cassie and Matt have been dating in the Yellowstone area for two years, and things are, well, average. When Cassie meets up with two college friends who are visiting, their love lives like sound like fairy tales: rose petals, chocolates, candles on the beach… Cassie goes home feeling like she’s missing out. After all, repeatedly watching Old Faithful erupt and walking through sulfur-smelling gases at Fountain Paint Pot don’t exactly say “romance.” Maybe things with Matt aren’t going anywhere, and it’s time to move on. Then she discovers that perception and reality are completely different things. Now she can only hope it isn’t too late to show Matt how much she really cares.

In the sweet novella GOLDEN SUNRISE, Natalie takes time out of her crazy schedule to fly to Vegas for her best friend’s wedding. Sierra and Jason, high-school sweethearts, are finally getting married. Fortunately for Natalie, her old high-school flame, Adam, has a work commitment and can’t be there as best man. But when she arrives at the wedding rehearsal—late and ragged—Adam is there. When Adam makes a wild suggestion, Natalie just may take him up on it, even though she knows he’s moved on. A single choice may mean Natalie is taking a shot at reclaiming the past—or that she's putting her heart in harm’s way a second time.

FIRSTS AND LASTS, an enchanting novella, begins with Dani’s last week in New York. She’s failed in her dreams to catch a break as an actress and is now ready to return home and dust herself off. As she visits the places on her final to-see list, she meets Mark, another New York City transplant with big dreams. Except Mark hasn’t given up on his. As they spend the day together, Dani realizes that even though she hasn’t hit the “big time” she might be living her dream after all. Only problem: she has a one-way ticket back home.

In the compelling novella WAR OF HEARTS, Anna, a journalist, is desperate to escape the magazine where Pete, her now-former boyfriend, also works. Heartbroken and still in love with him, Anna snags an assignment to cover the Winter War in Finland. She arrives at a snowy Finnish battlefront only to discover that Pete is already there—as her photographer. She’s determined to be professional about the situation until a battle breaks out in camp, putting her and Pete in harm’s way and putting their love to the test.

The captivating novella BETWEEN THE LINES follows Jane Martin, who is intelligent but extremely shy, especially around men. When the Aid and Cultural Society proposes a letter-writing program, Jane signs up, hoping she can find true friendship. The program doesn’t run as smoothly as expected, and unknown to Jane, one of the men in her city becomes her writing friend. Thomas Allred has always known shy and quiet Jane, but reading her letters written to his secret persona, opens his eyes to what an amazing woman she is. The only trouble is, Jane doesn’t know that the man who she is falling in love with through letters is also Thomas, the man who is falling in love with her in person.

In the charming novella A TASTE OF HOME, we meet Claire Jennings, who’s on her way to spend Christmas with her family. As she rides the train with William Rhodes, who grew up across the street, memories of the past flood her mind. He may be twenty-one now, but she can’t forget his torturous teasing from their school years. At the rail station, Claire discovers her home is under quarantine because her little brother has measles. She's stuck in town, away from her family, on her favorite holiday, with William.

This Timeless Collection is a great way to get a taste of several stories all in one sitting. Annette does a wonderful job of building the time and setting of each novella which I loved. I often struggle with novellas because I want to know more, and would recommend reading these one at a time because they are not inerrelated in any way. I truly enjoyed how unique each one is. Take this on your next trip or leave it by your bedside to enjoy. Clean with some kissing and drinking. Fun, sweet and well-written.

About the Author

Annette Lyon is a Whitney Award winner, a two-time recipient of Utah’s Best of State medal for fiction and the author of nine novels, a cookbook, and a grammar guide as well as over a hundred magazine articles. She’s a senior editor at Precision Editing Group and a cum laude graduate from BYU with a degree in English. When she’s not writing, editing, knitting, or eating chocolate, she can be found mothering and avoiding the spots on the kitchen floor.
Find her online at Annette‘s website http://www.annettelyon.com/
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In Wisdom & Order by Boyd K. Packer~ Blog Tour and Review

16 Dec, 2013 by in Uncategorized Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

In Wisdom & Order by Boyd K. Packer~ Blog Tour and Review

In Wisdom & Order

by Boyd K. Packer
Published by Deseret Book Genres: LDS, Non- Fiction
Pages: 272
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
The timeless counsel King Benjamin lovingly presented to his people includes this simple and thoughtful caution: "See that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order" (Mosiah 4:27). In this new collection of addresses, President Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles reiterates an ancient prophet's call to do all things "in wisdom and order." These twenty-eight chapters-selected from President Packer's conference addresses, mission presidents' seminars, and other speeches given over the past five decades-will instruct and inspire parents, youth, teachers, priesthood leaders, indeed, anyone who desires to learn at the feet of an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. In this book you will find classic discussions on- Faith, "the kind of faith that causes things to happen, the kind of faith that moves people and sometimes moves things." Self-reliance, with a reminder that "you have great and powerful resources at hand. You, through prayer, can solve your problems without endlessly going to those who are trying so hard to help others." Temple covenants, which "become our credentials for admission into His presence. To worthily receive them is the quest of a lifetime; to keep them thereafter is the challenge of mortality." And much, much more. As you read the words of this faithful disciple-leader, you will recognize anew that the Savior's hand is ever present in our lives and that the gospel plan is one of great "wisdom and order," designed to return us to our heavenly home clothed in glory and righteousness.

Boyd K. Packer has always stuck out in my mind as a straightforward, inspirational speaker who is not afraid to say things as they are. Reading his words gathered in this book titled In Wisdom & Order was like a crash course in aligning your life with the Lord’s. Twenty eight chapters of addresses from his mission conference seminars, conference speeches and talks broken down into five parts:

  1. Gospel Foundations
  2. Principles of Perfection
  3. Priesthood, Youth and Family
  4. Teachers and Servants and
  5. Lessons From Our Leaders.

This was a Sunday selection that you could spend weeks on, because Elder Packer puts so many scriptural references in each chapter. Perhaps the most interesting story for me was learning about the selection of J. Reuben Clark Jr. as second counselor in the First Presidency. The world had to wait six months between Conference sessions for the announcement of who the Lord has chosen. A man who had never been bishop or stake president, but a man whom the Lord had called and chosen under President Joseph Fielding Smith. Never underestimate the Lord’s capability to see what man can not see and then to reveal it to one of his servants.

There are several chapters which include poems or hymns form Eliza R. Snow. We also hear personal stories from Boyd K. Packer’s assignment as an apostle,  and earlier in his life as a World War II soldier. This is a book you’ll want have for ready reference. Once I started reading, I was tutored and taught–then shared what I learned with my family.

Highly recommend!

5 heather

 

About the AuthorPresident Boyd K. Packer

President Boyd K. Packer, the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was set apart to this position on February 3, 2008. Previously, he was Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles beginning June 5, 1994. Prior to becoming Acting President, he served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, having been ordained an Apostle on April 9, 1970. He earlier served for almost nine years as an Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

An educator by profession, his career includes service as supervisor of seminaries and institutes of religion for the Church and as a member of the Administrative Council of Brigham Young University.

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In Love and War Blog Tour

13 Dec, 2013 by in blog tour, book review, carla kelly, Uncategorized Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

In Love and War Blog Tour

In Love and War

by Carla Kelly
Published by Cedar Fort, Sweetwater on February 14, 2012
Genres: Adult, Historical Fiction
Pages: 240
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
Beloved romance writer Carla Kelly shares a treasured collection of wonderfully written stories of dashing war heroes and the sassy heroines who can’t help falling for them. From daring sea captains to genteel lords, there’s a little something for every heart’s fancy. Readers everywhere will adore these four regency romances—now available together for the first time in one must-have book!
In-Love-and-War-blog-tour

Fire and Ice is honored today to be a part of the blog tour for In Love and War by Carla Kelly.

If you are looking for historical fiction set in time of war this is another great compilation of shorts by Carla. It’s very similar to her Christmas Collection and the two of them together would make a great gift set. We get a very interesting look at Quakers, American versus British society, the shipping and rope making industry, Naval press gangs and life in time of trouble. I would recommend taking this book one chapter at a time because there is so much detail in each setting that it’s hard to digest in one read.

Carla has a way of always highlighting the two hearts that find each other amidst the most daunting of circumstances. I’m thinking this is a reprint of the same books from her mainstream signet romance book with a re-imaged cover. So I can’t wait to see what else Carla has up her sleeve. Hoping this new year brings some new original LDS romance titles!

Fans of Regency or historical romance this is a great author to stalk.

Content (highlight to reveal): mature, some sexual innuendo like  mentions of breasts, mattresses

 

3_5heather

 

About  the Author

carlakellyAward-winning author Carla Kelly is a veteran of the New York and international publishing world. The author of more than thirty novels and novellas for Donald I. Fine Co., Signet, and Harlequin, Carla is the recipient of two Rita Awards (think Oscars for romance writing) from Romance Writers of America and two Spur Awards (think Oscars for western fiction) from Western Writers of America. She is also a recipient of a Whitney Award for Borrowed Light and My Loving Vigil Keeping.

Website /Blog /Goodreads

 

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Early Review ~Dangerous Dream: A Beautiful Creatures Story

10 Dec, 2013 by in book review, dangerous creatures, hachette, kami garcia, little brown, m stohl Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Netgalley, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review ~Dangerous Dream: A Beautiful Creatures Story

Dangerous Dream: A Beautiful Creatures Story

by Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl
Series: Dangerous Creatures 0.5
Published by Hachette, Little Brown Young Readers on December 17, 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult
Pages: 46
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley, Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
The #1 New York Times bestselling Beautiful Creatures series continues in this brand-new digital-exclusive story.

Catch up with Ethan, Lena, and Link as they finally graduate from high school and get ready to leave the small Southern town of Gatlin. But when Dark Caster Ridley makes an appearance, the sometime bad girl can't resist picking a fight with her sometime boyfriend, Link. Angry and rebellious as ever, Ridley ends up alone in New York City and becomes entangled in the dangerous underground Caster club scene, where the stakes are high and losers pay the ultimate price.

Where's a Linkubus when you need him?

It’s been quite a while since I’ve read a book in this vein. I left off with book two in the Caster Chronicles– Beautiful Darkness in 2010. But when Little Brown sent a link to the prequel in a  new spin off series– Dangerous Creatures– I decided to jump back in and give it a whirl. Now that I’ve dabbled in the what’s to come, I’m adding Dangerous Creatures to my TBR list.

Book 0.5, Dangerous Dream starts right at graduation from High School for Ethan, Lean, Ridley and Link.  The first couple of chapters are from Ethan Waite’s point of view as he’s waiting for the long and drawn out ceremonies in his hot Southern town of Gatlin to end. There’s the debutante girls with fluffy hair and the long drawn out renditions of awful sappy songs…and then there are snakes. Three guesses who is up to no good again? Ridley. The Siren with an attitude, a pink lollipop and dark caster powers. She can break up an event rather quickly. Her boyfriend (or so he likes to believe) Link takes the next chapter from his point of view. Drummer in a  local band he has fallen for Ridley hard. Even though he knows what she is and the powers she would, he cant stop from falling in love.  He starts a snowball of events that leave Ridley reeling and she makes her escape to travel the world and keep her mind off of Link by numerous diversions.

Ridley ends up in New York which is where the majority of Dangerous Dream is set. It picks up a gritty feel reminiscent of Cassie Clare’s Mortal Instruments series as Ridley takes on the night life in a Dark Caster underground club. The night life holds high stakes and Ridley take s a gamble that just might cost more than she bargained for.

I loved the sights, smells and food we taste as readers under the story crafting of Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. These two fill in their world in a way that you will feel you are there. They are amazing storytellers. I will say I’m missing Amma and her culinary creations!

Overall, a fast read with lots of appeal to fans of paranormal and urban fantasy.  We are introduced to two new “bad boys” and are teased in the end with the beginnings of book one. If you are a fan of Link and Ridley be excited because the Dangerous Creatures series is for you!

Mature YA. Highlight to reveal content:  drugs, moderate swearing, senusality, gambling, drinking, gritty underground feel

 

4

heather

About the Authors

kami-garciaKami Garcia is the #1 New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Wall Street Journal & international bestselling co-author of the Beautiful Creatures Novels (Beautiful Creatures, Beautiful Darkness, Beautiful Chaos & Beautiful Redemption). Beautiful Creatures has been published in 50 countries and translated in 39 languages. The Beautiful Creatures movie released in theaters on February 14, 2013.

Kami is also the author of Unbreakable, the first book her paranormal solo series, THE LEGION (coming October 1, 2013.

Kami grew up outside of Washington DC, wore lots of black, and spent hours writing poetry in spiral notebooks. As a girl with Southern roots, she has always been fascinated by the paranormal and believes in lots of things “normal” people don’t. She’s very superstitious and would never sleep in a room with the number “13″ on the door. When she is not writing, Kami can usually be found watching disaster movies, listening to Soundgarden, or drinking Diet Coke.

Kami has an MA in education, and taught in the Washington DC area until she moved to Los Angeles, where she was a teacher & Reading Specialist for 14 years. In addition to teaching, Kami was a professional artist and led fantasy book groups for children and teens. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, son, daughter, and their dogs Spike and Oz (named after characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer)

Facebook Twitter tumblr Pinterest Instagram RSS

 

 

margaretstohlHR

 

Margaret Stohl is the author of ICONS, the first book in the Icons Series, forthcoming from Little, Brown in Spring 2013 – as well as the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, Los Angeles Times, Indie-Bound and Internationally Bestselling co-author of the Beautiful Creatures Novels (with Kami Garcia.)

Including BEAUTIFUL CREATURES (2009), BEAUTIFUL DARKNESS (2010), and BEAUTIFUL CHAOS (2011), BEAUTIFUL REDEMPTION (2012)– along with DREAM DARK, a Beautiful Creatures story available exclusively online (August, 2011) – the Beautiful Creatures Novels have been translated into 28 languages and 37 countries.  The Beautiful Creatures movie based on the books comes out February 14, 2013 from Alcon and Warner Bros. It stars Alden Ehrenreich, Alice Englert, Viola Davis, Emma Thompson, Jeremy Irons, Thomas Mann and Zoey Deuthc with the Academy Award nominated writer/director Richard LaGravenese.

Beautiful Creatures was an ALA William C. Morris YA Debut Award finalist in 2010, as well as a SCIBA award finalist, a NYPL Book for the Teen Age, and a YALSA Teen Top Ten Pick. Beautiful Creatures was named the #1 Teen Pick from Amazon in 2009, and the #5 Editors Pick, Overall.

A longtime veteran of the videogame industry, Margaret’s work includes – to name a few – SPIDERMAN, FANTASTIC FOUR, DUNE 2000, THE PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE LEGEND OF JACK SPARROW, DEFENDER, THE SOPRANOS, SLAVE ZERO, APOCALYPSE, ZORK NEMESIS, ZORK GRAND INQUISITOR, SPYCRAFT, COMMAND & CONQUER: RED ALERT RETALIATION, and COMMAND & CONQUER: TIBERIAN SUN.

After working with Activision (now Activision/Blizzard) and Westwood Studios (now EA), Margaret became a co-founder of 7 Studios with her husband, Lewis Peterson. She has previously been nominated for “Most Innovative Game Design” at the Game Developers Conference.

Margaret has participated in the Nashville Screenwriters Conference, the Tribu dei Lettori in Rome, and the BAU Institute/Otranto Residency, as well as the LA Times Festival of Books, Romantic Times, and the Texas Book Festival. She was the Director of Programming for the 2011 YA Capitol Bookfest in Charleston, SC, and a founding member of the Smart Chicks tour.

Margaret has been featured in Amherst Reads, and is a contributor to the Los Angeles Review of Books. She has been a member of the WGA West and PEN West. Margaret’s original screenplays have been optioned by Clasky-Csupo and Nickelodeon Movies for feature film.

A graduate of Amherst College, where she won the Knox Prize for English Literature, Margaret earned a MA in English from Stanford University, and completed classwork for a PhD in American Studies from Yale University. Margaret was a teaching assistant in Romantic Poetry at Stanford, and in Film Studies at Yale. She attended the Creative Writing Program of the University of East Anglia, Norwich, where she was mentored by the Scottish poet George MacBeth.

Margaret loves traveling the world with her daughters, who are epee fencers, and living in Santa Monica with her husband, also a writer, and two bad beagles.

 

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Review: Peace: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel by Shelley Shepard Gray

09 Dec, 2013 by in amish fiction, book review, christmas Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Peace: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel by Shelley Shepard Gray

Peace: A Crittenden County Christmas Novel

by Shelley Shepard Gray
Published by Avon Inspire on October 22, 2013
Genres: Adult, Amish Fiction
Pages: 256
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
After a year of secrets and scandal, will this Amish community finally find peace under the bright promise of Christmas?

Beth Byler has a secret. Ever since she met Englischer Chris Ellis while helping out at the Yellow Bird Inn, she can't stop thinking about him. She knows a relationship could never go anywhere—Chris was working undercover in Crittenden County as a DEA agent. That meant he faced danger daily and carried a gun, making him completely unsuitable for an Amish woman like herself. But she knew he felt the attraction, too. It was the reason he left so suddenly, promising never to see her again.

Then, three days before Christmas, while Beth is taking care of the inn, Chris returns. This time, he is bleeding and in need of a place to hide. Against her better judgment, Beth takes him in and tends to his wounds. She also promises to keep his presence a secret. Before long, it becomes clear that nothing between them has changed—a relationship is inevitable. But are they ready to sacrifice everything for this chance at love?

I’ve really been loving both Amish fiction and Christmas fiction this year, so I was super excited when I received Peace in the mail for review. Beth Byler is working for Christmas, holding down the fort at the bed and breakfast owned by her friend Frannie. She’s not expecting any guests until a knock at the door reveals Chris, a DEA agent and Englischer who has been badly wounded. He’s seeking refuge from a job gone bad. In need of stitches, without a place to stay, Beth decides she must take him in– but her heart is in more danger than she imagined.

Chris is looking for some peace and a chance to heal. But he has walls up that must be kept there to protect himself and Beth. He hasn’t seen his family in years for fear they will be ashamed of what he must become when he goes undercover, and for fear they will pay consequences if he is followed. But his time at the Yellow Bird with Beth may be just what he needs to sooth his soul.

This is a cozy novel that helps you believe in destiny, and the need to forgive. There is a definite romance element but the author keeps it clean, which I truly appreciate . It moves along slowly enough to fit the genre and characters perfectly. The pacing is good, but I wasn’t a fan of moving between two different story lines.

Alongside the main plot,  is a subplot of another Amish family in the community trying to muddle their way through a murder and the imprisonment of  the perpetrator. Lots of guilt and bitterness to be worked through. I had a hard time connecting with it, as I wanted to know just how the victim, Perry, lost his life and what role each person played. There were details left undone that left me a bit confused. The motivation for murder, the reasons behind it and how it played out were all left sketched, but not filled in. Maybe a follow up novella, or deleted scene with  flashback would be a great solution for me on the unanswered questions.

Overall, this is the best Amish fiction I’ve read yet and I would recommend it to adults looking for a light seasonal romance. I’m happy to have found the Avon Inspire imprint and new author to follow!

4heather

 

Author Bio

shelleyshepardgray2013-240x300

I grew up in Houston, Texas, went to Colorado for college, and after living in Arizona, Dallas, and Denver, we moved to southern Ohio about ten years ago.

I’ve always thought of myself as a very hard worker, but not ‘great’ at anything. I’ve obtained a bachelor’s and master’s degree…but I never was a gifted student. I took years of ballet and dance, but I never was anywhere near the star of any recital. I love to cook, but I’m certainly not close to being gourmet…and finally I love to write books, but I’ve certainly read far better authors.

Maybe you are a little bit like me. I’ve been married for almost twenty years and have raised two kids. I try to exercise but really should put on my tennis shoes a whole lot more. I’m not a great housekeeper, I hate to drive in the snow, and I don’t think I’ve ever won a Monopoly game. However, I am the best wife and mother I know how to be.

Isn’t it wonderful to know that in God’s eyes that is okay? That from His point of view, we are all exceptional? I treasure that knowledge and am always so thankful for my faith. His faith in me makes me stand a little straighter, smile a little bit more, and be so very grateful for every gift He’s given me.

I started writing about the Amish because their way of life appealed to me. I wanted to write stories about regular. likeable people in extraordinary situations-and who just happened to be Amish.

Getting the opportunity to write Inspirational novels is truly gratifying. With every book, I feel my faith grows stronger. And that makes me feel very special indeed.

Learn More

        
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Fire and Ice Blog Tours Sign Up ~ Echo In Time by C.J. Hill

03 Dec, 2013 by in blog tour, CJ Hill, janette rallison 8 comments

Fire and Ice Blog Tours Sign Up ~ Echo In Time by C.J. Hill

Echo In Time

by CJ Hill
Series: Erasing Time #2
Published by Katherine Tegen on December 23, 2013
Genres: Fantasy, Time Travel, Young Adult
Pages: 400
Format: Paperback
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
After being pulled 400 years into the future, twins Taylor and Sheridan have found some refuge from the government of Traventon, which used the dangerous Time Strainer to yank the girls from the past. Yet the threat of the dangerous technology still looms. Taylor and an ally, Joseph, are selected to go on a mission to destroy the time machine and weapon. But their actions before they do may have major consequences for the future and the past.

Action-packed and romantic, this futuristic sequel to Erasing Time is perfect for fans of dystopian and sci-fi novels such as The Maze Runner by James Dashner, Across the Universe by Beth Revis, and Matched by Ally Condie.
echo in time blog tour

 

Fire and Ice  blog tours is proud to announce another tour opportunity.

Echo in Time by C.J. Hill

Click to sign up to participate in the tour which kicks off December 23, 2013.

BLOG TOUR IS FULL! Sign up for the Release Day Blitz :)

Blogs must have 1000 or more followers

 US mailing addresses only for review copies

Posts must be up by 8 AM EST and be the top post of the day

 

Cj-hillAbout the Author

CJ Hill is a pen name for a YA author who is best known for writing romantic comedies. (Slayers will be her 18th published book.) Her writing has shifted away from the romantic comedy genre, so her editor thought a pen name would be a good idea. (New books will include: dangerous dragons, time travel to dystopian worlds, and flesh-eating beetles.) Since the publisher refused to let her have the pseudonym : The Artist Formerly Referred to as Princess, she chose a name to honor her mother. CJ Hill was her mother’s pen name, or at least it would have been if her mother had published. Her mother wrote a few children’s books and a middle grade novel but was taken by cancer before she had fully learned the craft.
 
Most writers’ first novels aren’t publishable. CJ Junior’s first novel wasn’t, but somehow was published anyway. Now, even though it is out of print, it remains forever available on Amazon, where it taunts her with its badness. This was another good reason to use a pen name.
 
CJ Hill has five children, three of whom like her on any given day depending on who is in trouble. She has lived in Arizona for the last half of her life, but is still in desert denial and hopes that one day her garden will grow silver bells and cockle shells or maybe just tomatoes.

If you are a smaller blog and would like to participate in a book blast or spotlight, leave me a comment.

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I Will Lead You Along: The Life of Henry B. Eyring ~ Book Tour and Review

29 Nov, 2013 by in book review, book tour, deseret book, henry b eyring Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

I Will Lead You Along: The Life of Henry B. Eyring ~ Book Tour and Review

I Will Lead You Along: The Life of Henry B. Eyring

by Robert Eaton & Henry J. Eyring
Published by Deseret Book on 2013
Genres: Biography, Non- Fiction
Pages: 560
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Buy the BookGoodreads
Henry Bennion Eyring was born on May 31, 1933, in Princeton, New Jersey, bearing the first name of his father, who was fast building a reputation as a brilliant scientist, and the family name of his mother, who didn't care for the name "Henry" and insisted that he be called Hal.

In 1970, Hal received an impression to make a daily record of his activities. Years of journals form the backbone of this personal biography, a candid look at his walk through life with his beloved companion, Kathy. "The journal shows how a good-but-imperfect man works each day to win divine approval," write the authors, and this window into his past provides unforgettable insights about the man the Lord has shaped him to become.

Readers will love these richly designed pages, filled with photographs, sketches from the pen of President Eyring himself, and scores of entries straight from his journals woven into an engaging depiction of his life's journey.

President Henry B. Eyring's professional, academic, and personal experiences have all combined to make him uniquely qualified for his responsibilities as a member of the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. His life story vividly demonstrates the power of the Lord and the example set by one who strives to follow His commands.

This is the first biography I have ever read, and thanks to the amazing read it was, likely not the last. This 560 page inspirational  memoir outlines the life of Henry B. Eyring, who is called simply ” Hal” throughout the book. It’s full of sketches form his personal journal, family photographs, quotes from those who know him and typewritten excerpts in Hal’s own words. The multi- media approach to outlining Elder Eyring’s life was not the only draw however. It’s the stories of a man who is ever striving to seek the answers to his prayers, to serve, and to be an amazing father to his children.  Hal and his father were both brilliant scientists who left a huge mark on the world around them. I learned so many interesting things about Hal that I didn’t know before.

  • As a boy Hal was befriended and protected by a member of the African American Hawks gang, teenager Tommy Homes, who protected Hal and became a guardian against bullying.
  • Elder Eyring served his mission after receiving his Bachelor’s degree as a District missionary in the Air Force
  • Spencer W. Kimball was Hal’s uncle and often gave him inspirational advice.
  • He owned a red VW beetle from his father as an MBA graduation present.  He drove it at Stanford, but it was sold without Hal’s knowledge, by his father-in-law while he was out of town. The replacement car was a late-model Ford Thunderbird with rear “suicide doors” hinged at the back rather than the front.

As I carried I Will Lead You Along with me,  it drew a lot of attention wherever I went. People often asked to look through it. I highly recommend it because of the example Hal’s life set and the deep lessons that are embedded about seeking the Lord’s guidance in all things and going where he want you to go.  An absolutely beautiful and enlightening read.

5heatherAbout the Authors

Robert I. Eaton began serving as president of the Washington Federal Way Mission in summer 2013. Prior to that, he was a professor of religious education at Brigham Young University-Idaho. He is a graduate of BYU and of Stanford Law School. He and his wife, Diane, are the parents of four children.

Henry J. Eyring graduated from Brigham Young University, earning a bachelor’s degree in geology and graduate degrees in business administration and law. He is the advancement vice president of BYU-Idaho and has served as director of the BYU MBA program. He also served as president of the Japan Tokyo North Mission. He and his wife, Kelly, are the parents of five children.

Learn more at Deseret Book

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Christmas From Heaven Blog Tour and Review

26 Nov, 2013 by in book review, children's, Shadow Mountain Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Christmas From Heaven Blog Tour and Review

Christmas from Heaven: The True Story of the Berlin Candybomber

by Robert T Barrett, Tom Brokaw
Published by Shadow Mountain on October 15th 2013
Genres: Children's, Non- Fiction
Pages: 32
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
"From little things come big things," Gail Halvorsen remembered his father saying. As a twenty-seven-year-old American pilot, Brother Halvorsen's job was to airdrop much-needed food and supplies to the people of West Berlin in the aftermath of World War II. But it was his simple gift of two sticks of gum that launched an extraordinary humanitarian endeavor and earned him the nickname "The Candy Bomber." Each day as hundreds of small white parachutes delivered treats to the children of West Germany, the wounds of war began to heal. "Operation Little Vittles" captured the imagination of people everywhere, bringing the spirit of Christmas to a world in need of peace and hope.

Famed broadcast journalist and author Tom Brokaw brings this remarkable true story to life in a stunning live performance with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, captured on the accompanying DVD. Also included in the book is a template and directions for creating your own "Candy Bomber" parachutes.

Review: Last night as our family gathered to talk about the things we are thankful for we read Christmas From Heaven out loud. It’s the trued story of “Hal” a WWII veteran, better known as the “candy bomber” who felt inspired to share all that he had with the children behind barbed wire fences…two sticks of gum. From this small thing, came big things. The idea to rain candy down form heaven in tiny parachutes made form hankerchiefs. His friends donated their candy and chocolate rations, he promised the children he would return and “wiggle his wings” as a symbol that his plane was ready to drop treats. Before long word got out, the press ate up the story and Hal’s general approved. 18 tones were shipped plus three more tons donated from private donors to the vittle delivery soldiers who dropped the treats to villagers below.

My children were all fascinated by this idea and for once they paid attention both to what we were reading and to the deeper message. Be gratetful for your freedom, give all that you have, no matter how small. They each wanted a turn looking at the photos of the actual children, the letters written and drawn in crayon and the beautiful illustrations. The book comes with a DVD which is a portion of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s Christmas concert and Tom Brokaw reading aloud from Christmas from Heaven.

Mom, he is reading it word for word my 9 year old cried as he grabbed the book to follow along and read in his own voice. What a wonderful gift Christmas From Heaven:The True Story of the Berlin Candybomber was for my own family, and what a wonderful feeling it brought into our home. It literally made our day.

Thanks so much to Shadow Mountain for once again teaching us through media the true spirit of the season.

5

heather

 

About the Author

Tom Browaw

Thomas John Brokaw is an American television journalist and author, previously working on regularly scheduled news documentaries for the NBC television network, and is the former NBC News anchorman and managing editor of the program NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw. His last broadcast as anchorman was on December 1, 2004, succeeded by Brian Williams in a carefully planned transition. In the later part of Tom Brokaw’s tenure, NBC Nightly News became the most watched cable or broadcast news program in the United States. Brokaw also hosted, wrote, and moderated special programs on a wide range of topics. Throughout his career, he has been the recipient of numerous awards and honors.

Brokaw serves on the Howard University School of Communications Board of Visitors and on the boards of trustees of the University of South Dakota, the Norton Simon Museum, the American Museum of Natural History and the International Rescue Committee. As well as his television journalism, he has written for periodicals and has authored books. He still works at NBC as a Special Correspondent.

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Follow Me To Zion~ Deseret Book Blog Tour and Review

12 Nov, 2013 by in review Leave a comment

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Follow Me To Zion~ Deseret Book Blog Tour and Review

Follow Me to Zion: Stories from the Willie Handcart Pioneers

by Andrew D Olsen and Jolene Allphin
on September 1st 2013
Genres: Non- Fiction
Pages: 272
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Goodreads
James G. Willie knew the trek would be arduous when he left Iowa City in July 1856, leading 500 handcart pioneers on a 1,300-mile journey across the plains.

But he could not have known that his people would run out of food while still hundreds of miles from Salt Lake City nor that the winter of 1856 would begin in the middle of October with prolonged, severe storms. Sixty-nine members of his company would die along the way. Yet from this tragedy emerged triumphant stories of personal endurance, courage, heroism, and unwavering faith.

Follow Me to Zion recounts 20 compelling stories of members of the Willie handcart company and their rescuers. Dozens of full-color images by artist Julie Rogers enrich this keepsake volume, which pays tribute to the men, women, and children who have become enduring witnesses of the power of faith and sacrifice.

Here you will find excerpts from their own accounts of the journey, learn what those faithful pioneers did after reaching the Salt Lake Valley, and read reflections on their lives by descendants.

The simple words “Follow Me to Zion,” cross-stitched onto small pieces of fabric kept in the journal of a handcart pioneer, are an invitation that still calls to us today.

The stories and paintings in this beautiful volume can inspire us to live true to our faith and reach out to help others do likewise.

This book also contains the most comprehensive, up-to-date listing of members of the Willie handcart company.
Review: I’ve heard the stories of the Willie and Martin handcart companies over the years, but never have I seen such a collection of personal poignant accounts as were collected in Follow Me To Zion. I knew I needed to grab a box of tissues when within the first two chapter I was already in tears– in awe with the fortitude, faith and determination of these pioneers. James G. Willie, captain of the company left his young family behind for four years to return to his native land of England then bring immigrants back to Salt Lake via an overland trek with handcarts. This was no easy journey. It required they board a ship bound to America amongst winds so strong they knocked passengers to the sides and bones were broken. Provisions ran out before New York was reached. Then a long rail journey to the end of the line and a trek on foot through Indian territory through mountain and and snow. Yet, these Saints pressed on, knowing full well they were leaving late int he season and may lose their lives in their quest to reach a land where all those who believed as they, were gathering in Utah.

Each chapter outlines the story of one family with photos, paintings, journal entries and a descendant letter at the end. You come to know the Martin handcart company intimately. So many things stuck out to to me while reading…

Those family members who carried their brothers and sons upon their backs when the snow was too deep for them to walk. James Kirkwood who lost his life carrying his younger brother to camp.
Emily Hill who was starving herself, yet saved the only onion given to her by rescuers on to another. Bodil Mortenson, a young girl of 10 who dies gathering bits of sagebrush for a fire amid the snow.

So many laid down their lives along the path to religious freedom. Yet their legacy lives on in their descendants who continue to tell the stories and feel the influence of their ancestors beyond the grave, as angels.

This book is unforgettable. The lay out is beautiful with thick pages and commissioned painting by Julie Rogers. I am so grateful for the authors who gathered all the Willie pioneer history into one book so that their memory may live on.

Thanks so much to Deseret Book for offering us a book in exchange for an honest review.

About the Authors: 

Andrew D. Olsen is an editor for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the author of The Price We Paid: The Extraordinary Story of the Willie and Martin Handcart Pioneers. Andrew and his wife, Linda, are the parents of 3 children.

Jolene Spendlove Allphin has a love for the 1856 pioneers and rescuers that continues to grow. She has published nearly 300 biographical sketches of them in Tell My Story, Too. Jolene and her husband, Michael, are the parents of 11 children.

Julie Boswell Rogers is an acclaimed artist who has won many awards. Her art has been featured in Church publications, visitors’ centers, and the Church History Museum. The book Emma, the Elect Lady contains many of her paintings of Joseph and Emma Smith. Julie and her husband, Russell, are the parents of 5 children.

Learn more at  Deseret Book