Saturday, May 28, 2016

Murder, Simply Stitched

Murder, Simply Stitched: An Amish Quilt Shop Mystery

Mass Market Paperback, audible, ebook

June 3, 2014

by Isabella Alan 

  • Series: Amish Quilt Shop Mystery (Book 2)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: NAL; 1st edition 
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451413642

When Angela Braddock enters her quilts in an Amish auction, she never expects one of her neighbors to end up going, going, gone....
Angie is finding her niche as the new owner of her late aunt’s Amish quilt shop, Running Stitch. But as the summer is winding down, so is business. To bolster support for the shop, Angie decides to sell her quilts in the Rolling Brook Amish Auction, including some of her aunt’s most prized works.

The quilts promise to be a hit—but the gavel comes down on the lively event when Angie stumbles upon the body of township trustee Wanda Hunt behind a canning shed. The cause of death: a poisoned blueberry fry pie from Rachel Miller’s bakery table. Now Angie’s closest friend is a murder suspect. With Angie taking the lead, she and the other women of her aunt’s quilting circle set out to patch together the clues and stop a killer set on shredding the simple peace of Rolling Brook.

Includes Quilting Tips!

My thoughts: MURDER, SIMPLY STITCHED is the second book in Ms. Alan's Amish Quilt Mystery series. There are some references to the first book Murder, Plain and Simple, but I didn't find it necessary to have read the first book as it stands alone. 

MURDER, SIMPLY STITCHED is written in first person, which might turn some readers off, but it didn't bother me. I enjoyed being "in Angie's head" as she tried to solve the mystery. Some of the events in the book are slap-stick comedy, some are just thrown in for shock value (I think) but it equaled a great book that I couldn't put down. I did have some suspicions who the "bad guy" was, but wasn't totally sure until it was revealed. 

If you like cozy mysteries and Amish stories, you will love MURDER, SIMPLY STITCHED. A great book that I couldn't put down. 5 stars. .

Friday, May 27, 2016

Sister Eve and the Blue Nun

Sister Eve and the Blue Nun

by Lynne Hinton  

Thomas Nelson

When Sister Eve returns to the monastery, the last thing she expects there is murder.

After solving several mysteries with her father at the Divine Private Detective Agency, Sister Eve finds herself torn between her calling as a nun and the thrill that comes with detecting. She knows she's been using her father's health as an excuse to extend her leave of absence from the monastery, but that excuse is running thin. She prays that a return visit to the monastery for a conference on the Blue Nun will help bring clarity to her calling, but when the conference speaker is murdered, Sister Eve's two worlds collide.

Sister Eve knows the number one suspect, the victim's brother and monk in residence, couldn't possibly have committed the crime, and she's determined to find the real killer. To do so means she must track down some mysterious newly discovered writings from the Blue Nun, said to date from the 17th Century, when the sister bi-located to the New Mexico region from her home in Spain. Could these texts from long ago be the key to today's mystery? And will they offer any guidance to Sister Eve as she chooses which calling to follow?

*This is the third Divine Private Detective Agency mystery. Book one,Sister Eve, Private Eye, and book two, A Case of the Sin City Sister, are available wherever books are sold. 

My thoughts; SISTER EVE AND THE BLUE NUN is the first book I've read by Lynne Hinton. EVen though it is the third book in the series it did easily stand alone, and I wasn't confused at all who was who and what their role was in the story. 

The story was somewhat contrived, with Sister Eve totally destroying the murder scene, touching everything, breaking them, leaving fingerprints -- and yet she was never considered a suspect  The story is written in narrative point of view which keeps the reader distant, unable to connect with the characters. Plus the reader sees things the characters don't see. 

The mystery is fairly easy to figure out, though the author did throw some red herrings in there to keep the reader guessing. If you like cozy mysteries, heavy on the cozy light on the action, adventure, and adrenaline, then you might want to give SISTER EVE AND THE BLUE NUN a chance.  

Warning for more conservative readers, it is Catholic, and the characters pray to Mary and the saints, not God. 

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 Meet the Author

Lynne Hinton is the New York Times best-selling author ofFriendship Cake and Pie Town. She received an undergraduate degree from UNC Greensboro and a Masters of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley. She has served as a hospice chaplain and church pastor. Lynne is a regular columnist with The Charlotte Observer. She lives with her husband in Albuquerque, NM.

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Book Blast: Saved by Grace

Genre: Poetry/ Christian/Autobiography
Book Title: Saved By Grace
Author: Natasha C. Pointer
ISBN-10: 1937129446
ISBN-13: 978-1937129446

About the Book

Saved By Grace is an Autobiography told thru poetry about her life, the hardships she faced, but most importantly how she overcame it all through prayer, faith, and steadfastness.
Poetry to touch the lives of others, to inspire someone, to encourage, and to bring joy in someone’s life. This book is filled with great hope for those facing life’s most challenging moments. As a storyteller, Natasha shares where she found her greatest strengths through prayer, faith and her steadfastness.

About The Author

Author | Motivational Speaker | Entrepreneur
Born and raised in Fort Myers, FLNatasha C. Pointer , shares her stories of faith and encouragement through poetry. She serves in ministry at Destiny Life Ministries. Saved by Grace is her first published work and is currently working on her next book Expressions. She is the owner/founder of Mysteri Message-In-A-Bottle.


From the day you were born,
you were a blessing.
You were a comfort and
inspiration to those around you.

You suffered enormous tragedies
and faced many challenges.
You suffered a great deal
and life as you saw it was over.

Each day seemed like an eternity—
every moment seemed everlasting.
You went in with your eyes closed,
but came out with them wide open.

You fell to your knees and asked,
why, why me?
Not realizing that your trials
would prepare you for your future.
Not knowing you were a blessed child
and you were called for a purpose.

Many obstacles came your way
and the enemy tried to bring you down.
He never wanted you to succeed,
let alone see the light of day.

Your cries reached up to God.
He said, You are my child.
No matter where you go,
I will be with you.

You are blessed.
Blessed you shall be,
and blessed you shall continue to be;
not only to yourself, but to others.

Contact Links

Purchase Link

Tour hosted by WNL

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Someone Like You

Enter giveaway here:

Someone Like You

by Victoria Bylin   

Contemporary Romance
Bethany House Publishers

"Together With You is a gripping story of forgiveness, love, and family relationships that will captivate readers from the opening chapter."

Single mom Julia Dare has a lot on her plate. A brand new Christian, she's busy trying to run her own business, spend time with her widowed mother, and raise her young son, Max, despite his father's less-than-ideal influence on him. When a big account from her event-planning business sends her to the Caliente Springs resort, she's shocked to come face-to-face with Zeke Monroe, the resort's general manager and her college sweetheart.

With his faith in tatters, Zeke Monroe is determined to keep the historic Caliente Springs resort running despite financial difficulties. But when Julia walks back into his life, he can't ignore the feelings she stirs up. As they work together on an important client's dream wedding, the fate of the resort soon depends on their success. When Zeke and Julia are pushed to their limits both personally and professionally, will their history put up walls between them or bring them together?

My thoughts: SOMEONE LIKE YOU is a totally wonderful story of faith, forgiveness and family relationships. A stand-alone, it is a story that gripped my attention from page one and didn't release me until I closed the ending pages. 

SOMEONE LIKE YOU is not at all predictable. I figured how I thought it would end, but the author released that bombshell a third of the way in and I'm like, okay... What will be the black moment? 

I loved Zeke. Oh my word, he is the stuff book-crushes are made of. I also loved Julia and felt for her as she tried to balance being a single mom, a career, and an overbearing, self-important jerk of an ex-boyfriend who was determined to be in his son's life. (And that is actually a good thing.) 

The only thing I really didn't like is that the characters drank a beer or two (or stronger drinks) but it wasn't a major thing in this book. More conservative readers are fore-warned. Those who don't have a problem with it won't find it worth mentioning.  

The characters -- including the goat -- in SOMEONE LIKE YOU became real, living, breathing people, and I was sorry to see this book end. I loved the faith message and how everything played out for the message to be heard. 

This is the first book I've read by this author, but I will definitely be on the lookout for her other books. 5 stars. 

Purchase a copy:

 Meet the Author

Victoria Bylin writes contemporary and historical romances known for their realistic, relatable characters. Her work has finaled in contests such as the Carol Awards, the RITAs, and the RT Reviewers' Choice Award. A native of California, she and her husband now make their home in Lexington, Kentucky.

 Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Interview with Jodie Wolfe and giveaway!!!

Today I'm welcoming Jodie Wolfe to my blog. Jodie is generously offering a copy of her book HEARTS TIGHTLY KNIT to one commenter. To enter, leave a comment and include contact information.  USA only, please. 

 Good to have you here, Jodie. Have you always liked to write?
Writing has been a part of me ever since I was very young. I first started writing poetry and then branched to little stories that I illustrated myself. Not very well I might add. J In my early teen years I wrote my first novel.

Me too. Writing is my dream job. What inspired you to write your first book?
I'll try and remember since that was quite a number of years ago. J I read a lot of Trixie Belden and Nancy Drew mysteries. I guess I just decided that I could write a mystery for teens too, so I started writing.

I used to read Trixie Beldon's books, too. How did you decide upon the title of Hearts Tightly Knit?
I was toying with a few different titles and queried my critique group - Quid Pro Quills. They helped me to come up with the title.

I love the title. Are any experiences in Hearts Tightly Knit  based on personal experiences? Did you draw upon any stories or movies for inspiration for the novel?
While I didn't rely on personal experiences for my novella, I did have twin sisters who read the story and let me know whether or not I was getting the 'twin thing' right. J

What book are you reading now?
I'm reading The Preacher's Lady by Lori Copeland.

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
I had the pleasure of reading Kathleen Rouser's new book, Rumors and Promises. Her story drew me in, and I didn't want to put it down.

What are you working on now? What is your next project?
I'm working on the sequel, Love in the Seams. This will tell the tale of Mae and how she finds love when she least expects it. It will be out in November.

Jodie Wolfe got bitten by the writing bug as a young girl after reading and watching Little House on the Prairie. She loves writing stories about feisty heroines and strong, godly heroes. The power of story to influence lives and change hearts is what motivates her to weave tales that tell of the Savior’s faithfulness and forgiveness. Her books provide history, hope, laughter and happily-ever-after. When not writing she enjoys spending time with her husband, reading, walking and being a Grammie.

Back Cover Blurb:

Orphaned at age ten, Ellie Stafford and her twin sister Mae made a vow—to stick together and never marry. Now in their mid twenties, they are bucking convention in Calder Springs, Texas, as women with respectable occupations who can take care of themselves. Ellie works at the Good Fixin's Diner and spends her evenings knitting garments for The Children's Aid Society. When a handsome local rancher shows up searching for a cook, she's hardly tempted, despite his good looks.

Luke Rogers owns a spread just outside of Calder Springs. It was running as smooth as cattle going through a chute until his cook up and marries and high-tails it back east. With no cook and a bunkhouse full of ranch hands ready to revolt, he persuades Ellie to temporarily fill in until he can hire someone else. He should have known better than to get tangled up with another woman.

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Monday, May 23, 2016

Anchor in the Storm

Anchor in the Storm Sarah Sundin

Anchor in the Storm

by Sarah Sundin  

Historical Romance

In a time of sacrifice, what price can one put on true love?

Nothing slows Lillian Avery down---not her personal challenges and certainly not America's entry into World War II. She finally has a chance to prove herself as a pharmacist in Boston. The demands of her new job energize her. But society boy Ensign Archer Vandenberg's attentions only annoy
---even if he is her brother's best friend.

During the darkest days of the war, Arch's destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves---and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions Lillian has been filling?

As the danger rises on both land and sea, the two must work together to answer that question. But can Arch ever earn Lillian's trust and affection?

My thoughts: ANCHOR IN THE STORM is book two in Ms. Sundin's Waves of Freedom series, but it easily stands alone. Fans will want to read book one, Through Waters Deep to get the details of Jim and Mary's romance and the mystery they solved. 

It was fairly obvious that Lillian would be going to Boston and getting involved in some type of drug related mystery, simply by the joking that she and her family did about it before she even went. I really liked Lillian's pluckiness and willingness to try new things, such as iceskating, though it did take some doing to talk her into going. 

Arch was a dream. He was suffering, as most seaman were, by some mental trauma due to the war, but he was unwilling to drug himself, as some did, to get past it. Lillian is concerned by the amount of the drugs that was going through the pharmacy, but her boss is unwilling to contest it--the doctor must know best--and Arch isn't sure how to fight the use of it onboard ship, especially since it causes the enlisted men under him to act like they are drunk and he is facing all the blame. I had to keep reading to see how Lillian and Arch would solve the problems. 

I also loved how Arch was totally devoted to Lillian. Flirting won't work? Then he found another way. Awesome! I completely love Ms. Sundin's books and cannot wait to read the next in the series, coming in the spring of 2017. Don't miss ANCHOR IN THE STORM. 5 stars. 

Purchase a copy:

 Meet the Author

Sarah Sundin is the author of With Every LetterOn Distant ShoresIn Perfect Time, and the Wings of Glory series. In 2014,On Distant Shores was a finalist for the Golden Scroll Awards from both AWSA and the Christian Authors Network. In 2011, Sarah received the Writer of the Year Award at the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference. A graduate of UC San Francisco School of Pharmacy, she works on call as a hospital pharmacist. During WWII, her grandfather served as a pharmacist's mate (medic) in the Navy and her great-uncle flew with the US Eighth Air Force in England. Sarah lives in California with her husband and three children.

 Blog Tour Schedule

Landing page:

In a time of sacrifice, what price can one put on true love? Pharmacist Lillian Avery and Ensign Archer Vandenberg are about to find out in Sarah Sundin's new book, Anchor in the Storm. During the darkest days of the war, Arch's destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves—and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions Lillian has been filling? As the danger rises on both land and sea, the two must work together to answer that question. But can Arch ever earn Lillian's trust and affection?

Celebrate the release of Sarah's Anchor in the Storm by entering to win her All Hands on Deck Prize Pack!

anchor in the storm - 400 

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A signed copy of Anchor in the Storm
  • Nautical tote bag lined with anchor fabric
  • Anchor necklace made from copper reclaimed from the USS Constitution in Boston during restoration
  • 365 Devotions for Hope by Karen Whiting
  • Shine: Nautical Inspirational Adult Coloring Book
  • "Hope Anchors the Soul" journal
  • Set of two nautical tea towels

LF AIS full group 2 

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry! The giveaway ends on June 8th. The winner will be announced June 9th on Sarah's blog.

anchor in the storm - banner

Sunday, May 22, 2016

A Simple Vow

A Simple Vow 

Simple Gifts #1

Mass Market Paperback, ebook, audio CD

May 31, 2016

by Charlotte Hubbard

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Zebra
  • ISBN-13: 978-1420138696

Housed in a rustic red barn, the Simple Gifts crafts shop celebrates the talents of the Amish of Willow Ridge--and the faith that inspires them. For the acceptance of simplicity opens the path to love. 

As far as Edith Riehl is concerned, the baby twins thrust suddenly into her arms are a heaven-sent gift. Unable to conceive, she longs to be a mother with a home of her own. She's going to abide by her promise to handsome Asa Detweiler to take care of them while he looks for their real father. And even if her domineering dat Cornelius refuses to countenance Asa's suit, she can only pray the bachelor's honesty and persistence will uncover the truth--even as he's kindled an impossible hope for a love of her own . . . 

Asa can't understand why anyone would think he would be so dishonorable as to father babies and then abandon them. He's determined to clear his name--but Edith's caring ways also inspire him to help heal her wounded spirit and earn her trust. In the face of heartbreaking deception, he and Edith must find the strength to understand, forgive . . . and claim their own hearts' joy. 

My thoughts:  A SIMPLE VOW is the first book in Ms. Hubbard's new series Simple Gifts. This book doesn't read like the a first book in a series though, more like a continuation of a previous series since I recognized many of the characters. I think they are from the Seasons of the Heart series. 

Some of the other reviewers commented about there being too many characters. Since I have read all of Ms. Hubbard's previous books I recognized most of them. Asa seemed a very nice young man, kind, considerate, and willing to go the extra mile while Will seems the opposite. I did feel for Will, losing his wife to cancer and then getting blind sided by his wife calling another man's name as she is dying and saying her twin babies aren't her husband's! Then Will is virtually disowned by his wife's family and the community, all claiming he must be less man since his wife was unfaithful. 

On the reverse side, Asa claims  he never even knew Will's wife, and he certainly didn't father them! How will the Amish prove who is the rightful father if paternity tests are discouraged? And will the real father step up to his responsibility? 

Edith and her sisters are more than willing to help out the  poor abandoned twins, and even start falling in love with them. The community at large is also happy to step in and help with the babies even if they won't have anything to do with either Asa or Will. I had to admire the girls willingness to help, but it bothered me that their father didn't want anything to do with the babies and was quite disagreeable to everyone involved. 

I had to keep reading to see how this story would end. Who is the father? Will Edith always be involved in the babies lives? Will her father come around?   A story with a lot of twists to keep the pages turning. Unforgettable Amish fiction