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A Bride For Noah by Lori Copeland and Virginia Smith November 24, 2013

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A Bride for Noah

SUMMARY: It’s 1851, and Evie Lawrence is penniless and desperate for an adventure. When her employer announces his plan to move west and make his fortune, Evie jumps at the chance to start a new life. She says goodbye to the only home she’s ever known and sets out for the rugged Northwest. She’ll build a restaurant in one of the new settlements, she decides.

A restaurant in the wilderness? Noah Hughes, a handsome young lumberjack, can hardly believe his ears. Evie has no idea what she’s getting into. The last thing his logging camp needs is a woman! And the last thing he’s looking for is a bride…so why can’t he get Evie out of his mind?

In this first book of the Seattle Brides series, two people learn what it means to move beyond their expectations and embrace the very beset God has for them.

Lori & Ginny

AUTHOR BIO: Lori Copeland is the author of more than 90 titles, both historical and contemporary fiction. With more than 3 million copies of her books in print, she has developed a loyal following among her rapidly growing fans in the inspirational market. She lives in the beautiful Ozarks with her husband, Lance, and their three children and seven grandchildren.

Virginia Smith is the author of more than 20 inspirational novels and more than 50 articles and short stories. An avid reader with eclectic tastes in fiction, Ginny writes in a variety of styles, from lighthearted relationship stories to breath-snatching suspense.

MY REVIEW: I was excited to receive the first book in the Seattle Brides series. Living in the Pacific Northwest I looked forward to reading a book set in my home state.

Getting to know some of the history of Washington state was pretty fun and interesting. I loved the characters and how their personalities developed. I was once again extremely pleased with the storyline these two authors created and can’t wait to read another book in this series. These authors are quite the dynamic duo, and I never finish one of their books feeling disappointed. On the contrary, they always create a story that draws me in and keeps me wanting for more.

Set in the 1850s, this book tells the story of different people trekking to the Northwest to start new settlements and the history behind the starting of those settlements. Also discussed are how those settlements got their names. I loved reading these bits of history, along with the storyline weaved in to make it a read I didn’t want to put down or even finish because I wanted to keep learning more about these characters and their lives.

I would definitely recommend this book. I look forward to the next installment in this series.

I received a copy of this book to read and review from the publisher. You can read more about these authors and other books by this publisher at their webite: http://www.harvesthousepublishers.com.

My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I did not like the book I would definitely not give a rave review or recommend it.

 

Three Reviews October 2, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — pattyleblanc @ 4:57 am

 TOUCHING THE CLOUDS BY BONNIE LEON

Summary: Kate Evans is an adventurous and independent young woman with a pioneering spirit. When she leaves her home in Washington State to follow her dream of being an Alaskan bush pilot, she knows it will be an uphill battle. But she never expected it to be quite like this. As athe lone woman in a man’s world, she finds that contending with people’s expectations is almost as treacherous as navigating the wild arctic storms.

When she crosses paths with a mysterious man living alone in the forbidding wilderness, she faces a new challenge. Can Kate break through the walls he has put up around his heart? And will fear keep her from realizing her dreams?

Author Bio: Bonnie is the bestselling author of several books of historical fiction. In addition to her work as a writer, Bonnie Leon has a passion for teaching of all kinds, especially on the art and intricacies of storytelling. She teaches at conferences and workshops and says, “There’s nothing more thrilling than to see a student’s eyes light up with understanding as she grasps the concepts of the writing craft and begins to believe she can tell stories someone else will want to read.” Bonnie is also a regular speaker at women’s church groups, writing groups, and business organizations. For more information on Bonnie’s speaking topics and schedule, visit her website at www.bonnieleon.com.  Bonnie lives in Oregon.

My Review: I guess I really am taken with books about women with strong determination and character. That is the case with Kate Evans, the main character in this book. I didn’t realize how close to home this book would be until I started reading it. Kate’s hometown is the same as mine. This for me made the book take on an entirely different turn. I felt a connection with Kate in finding this detail out. Kate has chosen to be a bush pilot in Alaska, which in 1935 was very unheard of for a woman to pilot a plane let alone be a bush pilot. Kate shows her sheer determination, but also sets out on a journey she could never have expected. This was book one in the Alaskan Skies series, and I look forward to hearing more from Bonnie Leon in book two.

For more books by this publisher visit www.RevellBooks.com. For more information on this author visit her website at www.bonnieleon.com.

I received a copy of this book to read and review from the publisher. My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I did not like the book I would definitely not give a rave review or recommend it.

THE HEALER’S APPRENTICE BY MELANIE DICKERSON 

Summary: Rose has been appointed as a healer’s apprentice at Hagenheim Castle, a rare opportunity for a woodcutter’s daughter like her. While she often feels uneasy at the sight of blood, Rose is determined to prove herself capable. Failure will mean returning home to marry the aging bachelor her mother has chosen for her–a bloated, disgusting merchant who makes Rose feel ill.

When Lord Hamlin, the future duke, is injured, it is Rose who must tend to him. As she works to heal his wound, she begins to understand emotions she’s never felt before and wonders if he feels the same. But falling in love is forbidden, as Lord Hamlin is betrothed to a mysterious young woman in hiding. As Rose’s life spins toward confusion, she must take the first steps on a journey to discover her own destiny.

Author Bio: Melanie Dickerson is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Romance Writers of America (RWA). Her novel has been a finalist seven times in RWA-sponsored contests, including winning the 2007 Fiction from the Heartland Contest over all categories. Melanie earned a bachelor’s degree in special education of the hearing impaired from the University of Alabama and has worked as a teacher and a missionary. She lives with her husband and two daughters in Huntsville, Alabama.

My Review: I was captivated by this book from page one. I found the entire concept to be quite interesting. The book is set in 1386. I really liked the whole tone of the book and was taken by Rose’s character right away. She just had one of those personalities that a person is drawn to. I loved Rose for her sense of determination, yet she still had an air about her of being unsure of herself at being a young woman trying to figure out who she is. Rose is taken with a man that she knows she should not be, and yet things keep happening that draw them even closer to one another. It is not very often that I read of castles, lords, and dukes, and I really actually enjoyed this setting. Throw in a little romance and you have the setting for a very enchanting story that I would definitely read again and can’t wait to hear more from Melanie Dickerson. Who would’ve thought I would love reading about medievel times so much. You will want to rush out and get a copy of this book for sure and read it over and over again.

For more books by this publisher visit www.zondervan.com. For more information about this author visit www.melaniedickerson.com.

I received a copy of this book to read and review from the publisher. My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I did not like the book I would definitely not give a rave review or recommend it.

SEEDS OF SUMMER BY DEBORAH VOGTS

Summary: Former rodeo queen Natalie Adams has big troubles. When her father dies unexpectedly, she’s saddled with the family ranch and two half-siblings, whose mother abandoned them years ago and is long-believed dead. A handsome young pastor, Jared Logan, repeatedly comes to her rescue. But Natalie’s strong, independent nature wants nothing to do with his help.

Jared, a city boy do-gooder, has dreams of his own. He’s ready to solve Natalie’s problems, as well as any problems in his church. But his congregation resists change, and the more deeply involved he becomes with natalie’s family, the more he questions his life as a clergyman. Jared’s enthusiasm turns to fear as he contemplates failure.

When Natalie’s stepmother unexpectedly shows up with plans of her own, Natalie must choose between the responsibilities of caring for a family or following her own desires. Love, forgiveness, and faith mingle together in the breathtaking world of the Kansas Flint Hills prairie.

Author Bio: Deborah Vogts and her husband have three daughters and make their home in southeast Kansas, where they raise and train American Quarter Horses. As a student at Emporia State University studying English and journalism, Deborah developed a love for the Flilnt Hills that has never faded. In writing this series, she hopes to share her passion for oen of the last tallgrass prairie regions in the world, showing that God’s great beauty rests on the prairie and in the hearts of those who live there.

My Review: I can’t even imagine the difficult choices Natalie Adams faced when her father died unexpectedly. Natalie had plans for herself, but when her father dies she feels responsible to take on the farm and her two half-siblings. I felt the conflicting emotions running through Natalie and understood her uncertainty of the future. But God had plans for her that she had not foreseen, and they played out so beautifully as she kept finding herself wherever Jared happened to be. Jared was unsure of what the future held for him, but thought he knew what he wanted it to be. Between the two of them, they had some things to figure out with the help of the Lord, and a journey that brought them to a place they could not have imagined. This was a good read with yet again another determined woman with strength of character. I loved it and look forward to more in the Seasons of the Tallgrass series.

For other books by this publisher visit www.zondervan.com. For more information about this author visit www.deborahvogts.com.

I received a copy of this book to read and review from the publisher. My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I did not like the book I would definitely not give a rave review or recommend it.

 

Watch Over Me by Christa Parrish February 8, 2010

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Summary: Deputy Benjamin Patil is the one to find the infant girl, hours old, abandoned in a field. As police work to identify the mother, Ben and his wife, Abbi, seem like the obvious couple to serve as foster parents. But the newborn’s arrival opens old wounds for Abbi and shines a harsh light on how much Ben has changed since a devastating military tour. Their marriage teeters on the brink, and now they must choose to reclaim what they once had or lose each other forever.

Author Bio:  A past winner of Associated Press awards for her hournalism, Christa Parrish now teaches literature and writing to high school students, is a homeschool mom, and lives near Saratoga Springs, New York. Her first novel, Home Another Way, was a finalist for athe 2009 ECPA Christian Book Award for fiction.

My Review: I really liked the writing in this book. I had not read a book by Christa Parrish before this, but I enjoyed this one so much that I plan on reading Home Another Way also. Abbi as a character was sometimes a person I loved tremendously and also struggled with her thoughts and ideas. I understood her reasoning for the choices she made, but didn’t always agree with them. Abbi struggles with the changes in her husband and their relationship, and they have many things to work through to get their marriage back to functioning. Will having a baby arrive in their home be the thing to make things right or will it destroy what is left of their flailing marriage? I was drawn into this story by many aspects of it, and I would highly recommend it to anyone. I look forward to reading another one of her books.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher to read and review. My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I did not like the book I would definitely not give a rave review or recommend it.

 

White Picket Fences Blog Tour November 13, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — pattyleblanc @ 6:04 am

white picket fencesSummary:  

Amanda Janvier’s idyllic home seems the perfect place for her niece Tally to stay while her vagabond brother is in Europe, but the white picket fence life Amanda wants to provide is a mere illusion. Amanda’s husband Neil refuses to admit their teenage son Chase, is haunted by the horrific fire he survived when he was four, and their marriage is crumbling while each looks the other way.

 Tally and Chase bond as they interview two Holocaust survivors for a sociology project, and become startlingly aware that the whole family is grappling with hidden secrets, with the echoes of the past, and with the realization that ignoring tragic situations won’t make them go away.

 Readers of emotional dramas that are willing to explore the lies that families tell each other for protection and comfort will love White Picket Fences. The novel is ideal for those who appreciate exploring questions like: what type of honesty do children need from their parents, or how can one move beyond a past that isn’t acknowledged or understood? Is there hope and forgiveness for the tragedies of our past and a way to abundant grace?

Author Bio:susan meissner

Susan Meissner cannot remember a time when she wasn’t driven to put her thoughts down on paper. Her novel The Shape of Mercy was a Publishers Weekly pick for best religious fiction of 2008 and a Christian Book Award finalist. Susan and her husband live in Southern California, where he is a pastor and a chaplain in the Air Force Reserves. They are the parents of four grown children.

My Review:

I really enjoyed this book. There were all kinds of aspects to it that made it interesting including suspense, anger, mystery, and even some history. My favorite character was Tally. She has lived an interesting life with her father Bart, but she still seems pretty grounded and level-headed. I kind of relate to her in some ways, which I guess is why she’s my favorite character. I would definitely highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good book.

Here is the link to Random House, which will list the different options where you can purchase the book online:

http://www.randomhouse.com/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9781400074570&ref=externallink_wbp_whitepicketfences_sec_0916_01

As a participant in this blog tour, I have received a copy to read and review. My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I do not like the book I would definitely not give a rave review or recommend it.

 

Fall Reads Blog Tour November 6, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — pattyleblanc @ 5:31 am

Book:  Leaving Carolina

Author:  Tamara Leigh

Summary:   Leaving Carolina

 Piper Wick left her hometown of Pickwick, North Carolina, twelve years ago, shook the dust off her feet, ditched her drawl and her family name, and made a new life for herself as a high-powered public relations consultant in LA. She’s even “engaged to be engaged” to the picture-perfect U.S. Congressman Grant Spangler.

Now all of Piper’s hard-won happiness is threatened by a reclusive uncle’s bout of conscience. In the wake of a health scare, Uncle Obadiah Pickwick has decided to change his will, leaving money to make amends for four generations’ worth of family misdeeds. But that will reveal all the Pickwicks’ secrets, including Piper’s.

Though Piper arrives in Pickwick primed for battle, she is unprepared for Uncle Obe’s rugged, blue-eyed gardener. So just who is Axel Smith? Why does he think making amends is more than just making restitution? And why, oh why, can’t she stay on task? With the Lord’s help, Piper is about to discover that although good PR might smooth things over, only the truth will set her free.

My Review:

I thoroughly enjoy reading Tamara Leigh’s books. Her characters crack me up all the time. I love a good laugh, and this author definitely provides a full share of those. She tends to give you a view of the thoughts of her characters, and that’s the part in her books that I really like. It makes me feel like I know them personally when I am able to get inside their heads. This is another book of hers that I would pass along to my friends because it was a nice easy read that was fun and enjoyable.

Book:  Limelight

Author:  Melody Carlson

Summary:   Limelight

Claudette Fioré used to turn heads and break hearts. She relished the glamorous Hollywood lifestyle because she had what it takes: money, youth, fame, and above all, beauty. But age has withered that beauty, and a crooked accountant has taken her wealth, leaving the proud widow penniless and alone.

Armed with stubbornness and sarcasm, Claudette returns to her shabby little hometown and her estranged sister. Slowly, she makes friends. She begins to see her old life in a new light. For the first time, Claudette Fioré questions her own values and finds herself wondering if it’s too late to change.

My Review:

Claudette was once living the high life in Hollywood with her famous husband. Now she is a widow and circumstances have completely changed in her life. She finds herself not knowing how to cope with these changes. What she does find along the way are a few lessons in life she would never have dreamed of learning. I found the beginning of the book a little slow, but I kept on reading. This is not the usual genre that I read, but it was enjoyable enough. There are many hilarious parts that are worth the read, but I can’t say it’s my favorite. Claudette is quite the character, and it makes you wonder if there are really people out there who are as difficult in the same manner as she is.

Book:  What Matters Most 

Author:  Melody Carlson

 Summary:   Diary of a Teenage Girl

 Maya’s Green Tip for the Day: Recycled fashion is one of the most fun ways to go green. A pair of jeans could be transformed into a denim skirt. A sweater into a vest. A bunch of old ties into a dress. A blanket into a poncho. Accessorize it in new way–with beads, buttons, appliqués, buckles, stencils, or ribbons…your imagination is only the limit. (65 words)

Sixteen-year-old Maya Stark has a lot to sort through. She could graduate from high school early if she wants to. She’s considering it, especially when popular cheerleader Vanessa Hartman decides to make her life miserable–and Maya’s ex-boyfriend Dominic gets the wrong idea about everything.

To complicate matters even more, Maya’s mother will be released from prison soon, and she’ll want Maya to live with her again. That’s a disaster waiting to happen. And when Maya plays her dad’s old acoustic guitar in front of an audience, she discovers talents and opportunities she never expected. Faced with new options, Maya must choose between a “normal” life and a glamorous one. Ultimately, she has to figure out what matters most.

My Review: 

This is actually the last book in the Diary of a Teenage Girl series. I hadn’t read any of the previous books, but I really liked this one. Maya is a carefree girl who has a lot on her plate and a history that got her to where she is. I found Maya to be a very lovable character. She was genuine and real. I feel like I want to go back and read the previous books to understand the journey of how Maya got to where she was in this book. I found this to be a story that I would definitely recommend and I appreciate having a book that relates to teens in a positive way and gives them good examples to follow.

As a participant in this blog tour, I have received a copy to read and review. My review is not biased by the fact that I was given this book. I HONESTLY read and review any book whether bought or given to me. If I do not like the book I would definitely not give a raving review or recommend it.

These books may be purchased online at the following websites:

Leaving Carolina: http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/catalog.php?isbn=9781601421661

What Matters Most: http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/catalog.php?isbn=9781601421197

Limelight: http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/catalog.php?isbn=9781400070824

 

The Flower of Grass by James E. Robinson July 6, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — pattyleblanc @ 8:05 pm
Summary
John Allen returns to his home town after the death of his alcoholic, abusive father. He has been gone 16 years and has become a successful writer, but with major addiction problems of his own. Now he struggles to make amends with his careworn sister and dropout younger brother – and, perhaps, to pick up the pieces of his teenage love affair with Jessie.
Flower of GrassBut Jessie has grown tired of waiting for letters that ceased to come, and has married. At what cost might theier love be rekindled?
An exquistely written, passionate and thoughtful novel, this is a classic love story framing deeper themes of mortality and passing time, the true nature of faith, and athe delicate balance of human relationships.
Author Bio
james e. robinsonJames E. Robinson is an award-winning singer/songwriter whose songs have been recorded by many country, Christian and rock musicians. He also works as a professional recovery counsellor in Nashville, TN, for more information go to www.jameserobinson.com. James and his wife Teresa have two children.
My Review
John Allen is in search of the one thing that he feels is missing in his life, his one true love. Years ago he left town to get away from his alcoholic father and also left Jessie behind. Now that he has been away he comes back to see what he can make of his life now that his father has died. The only problem is that Jessie is already married. What can he make of his life now? This story is full of pain trying to be eased and uncertainty of how to effect the easing of that pain.
 

AMISH LOVE May 28, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — pattyleblanc @ 8:19 pm
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What’s all the hubbub about Amish fiction? Major media outlets like Time and ABC Nightline are covering it, and authors like Cindy Woodsmall are making the New York Times bestseller list regularly. What makes these books so interesting?

cindy woodsmall header_logo

 Check out the recent ABC Nightline piece here (http://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/story?id=7676659&page=1) about Cindy and her titles When the Heart Cries, When the Morning Comes, and When the Soul Mends. It’s an intriguing look at Amish culture and the time Cindy has spent with Amish friends.

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And don’t forget that Cindy’s new book The Hope of Refuge hits store shelves August 11, and is available for preorder now.

hope of refuge