A Worthy Pursuit by Karen Witemeyer: An adventure you don’t want to miss!

A Worthy Pursuit

Take one schoolmarm spinster with her three charges that she’ll defend to the death and throw in a tough-as-nails former Texas Ranger that would be equally at home in the pages of a Louis L’Amour. Spin them off on a journey that starts with the two of them at cross-purposes and then throw in a common enemy. The adventure that ensues is as heart warming and pulse thumping as any book that has landed in your lap in a while. Karen Witemeyer’s historical western A Worthy Pursuit takes you by the heart on page one and tugs you through to the very last word. Take my word for it: This is an adventure you don’t want to miss!

A teacher on the run. A bounty hunter in pursuit. Can two enemies learn to trust each other before they both lose what they hold most dear?

Stone Hammond is the best tracker in Texas. He never comes home empty-handed. So when a wealthy railroad investor hires him to find his abducted granddaughter, Stone eagerly accepts.

Charlotte Atherton, former headmistress of Sullivan’s Academy for Exceptional Youths, will do anything to keep her charges safe, especially the orphaned girl entrusted to her care. Charlotte promised Lily’s mother she’d keep the girl away from her unscrupulous grandfather, and nothing will stop Charlotte from fulfilling that pledge. Not even the handsome bounty hunter with surprisingly honest eyes who comes looking for them.

When Miss Atherton produces documentation that shows her to be Lily’s legal guardian, Stone must reevaluate everything he’s been led to believe. Is she villain or victim?

Then a new danger forces Charlotte to trust the man sent to destroy her. Stone vows to protect what he once sought to tear apart. Besides, he’s ready to start a new pursuit: winning Charlotte’s heart.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

Orchard of Hope by Ann H. Gabhart: A Review

 

Orchard of HopeIf you’ve never been to Hollyhill before, it’s high time you popped in. Jocie and company are back and things are heating up—and not just because it’s the hottest summer on record. Until Myra and Alex Hearndon and buy a farm, Hollyhill could pretend it didn’t have any problems with racism.  Myra Hearndon, the new comer with a chip on her shoulder the size of a boulder, is determined to force Hollyhill into a new era. When men start running around in white sheets and desegregation hits the local school tensions rise and the sleepy southern town has to wake up and make some tough decisions. Ann Gabhart is so good at whetting your appetite from the get go and keeping you in the story, that when you finally look up its 3 AM and the book is almost done.  Orchard of Hope is like that tall glass of water in the middle of a drought—you start with a sip and before you know it you’ve gulped it all down. A thoroughly enjoyable read.

The smoldering embers of unrest are stirring–and even Jocie’s sweet spirit can’t put them out.

It’s already been an eventful summer for Jocie Brooke. Little does she know, things have only just begun to heat up. Drought has gripped the quiet Kentucky town of Hollyhill and it seems as if everyone is waiting–for rain, for a fresh start, for the next step toward the future.

Into this tense haze of anticipation comes a new family, aiming to make a better life for themselves by planting an orchard on the outskirts of town. Fresh off the freedom train, Alex and Myra Hearndon are sensitive to what the color of their skin may mean in the segregated South. And even though Jocie quickly befriends the family, suspicion from both sides of the racial divide proves a formidable obstacle. Can Jocie help bridge the gap? Or will life in her quiet community fall apart at the seams?

Bestselling author Ann Gabhart invites you back to Hollyhill for a gripping tale of unexpected friendship, forgiveness, and the bright promise of a new beginning.

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.

 

Keeping “A Bride For Keeps” On My Bookshelf

A bride for keepsMail-order brides and ruggedly handsome cowboys just seem to go hand in hand when it comes to romantic tales of the Wild West, but Melissa Jagears in her debut novel, A Bride for Keeps, puts a fresh spin on an old story. Everett Cline, jilted by one to many brides, has lost faith in the good Lord’s provision. Julia Lockwood has never known a loving earthly father, let alone a Heavenly one. Finagled for him by well-meaning neighbours, Everett is so not interested in this latest mail-order bride. And as for Julia, she steps off the afternoon train like a woman meeting a firing squad.  Though this is not exactly the match everyone hoped for, if the unlikely pair give each other a chance they just might be surprised by love.

Jagears has a fresh compelling voice and Salt Flatts, Kansas sounds like a place I want to settle in and get to know. I can hardly wait for her next installment!

About

Everett Cline will never humiliate himself by seeking a mail-order bride. Not again. He’s already been jilted by three mail-order brides and figures a wife just isn’t in his future. However, a well-meaning neighbor hasn’t given up on seeing him settled, so she goes behind his back to bring yet another woman to town for him.

Julia Lockwood has never been anything more than a pretty pawn for her father or a business acquisition for her former fiance. A mail-order marriage in faraway Kansas is a last resort, but she’ll do anything to leave her life in Massachusetts and the heartbreak she’s experienced there.

Although Everett doesn’t see how a beautiful, cultured woman like Julia could be happy sharing his simple life, he could really use a helpmate on his homestead. Determined to prove she’s more than just a pretty face, Julia agrees to a marriage in name only. Faced with the harsh realities of life on the prairie and hesitant to explore the tentative feelings growing between them, can Everett and Julia ever let each other in long enough to fall in love?

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.

The Long Awakening by Lindsey O’Connor: A Review

The Long Awakening by Lindsey O'Connor

I’m a fiction junky through and through so it takes quite a bit to knock me out of that habit, but Lindsey O’Connor’s The Long Awakening is just such a book. In this personal memoir O’Connor recounts her descent into the darkness of coma after the birth of her daughter. Uterine rupture and subsequent complications suspended her in darkness for 47 days. Then she begins her long ascent out of darkness. Dispelling Hollywood myths of awakening to perfect health, O’Connor offers us the poignant and often brutal truth of regaining muscle and brain function after lying dormant for so long. Yet this is more than a story of personal healing. Love story, drama, and resounding hope will have you weeping and cheering right alongside of the author. An excellent compelling read. Honest, lovely, and inspiring. Buy it. Read it.

Watch the trailer on You Tube:

About

The riveting true story of a life-threatening coma, a miraculous awakening, and the long quest to regain what was lost.

The day our baby came into the world was the day I left. A day that began all smiles and excitement and anticipation and joy ended with running and panic and blood and tears. And then coma.

I lay suspended in the deep, my newborn unknown. Nothingness. Layers where dark pulled from below, light called from above, and me, trapped in between, longing to break the surface.

To live.

Forty-seven days later when I first saw my husband’s face leaning close to me, I knew where, and who, I was. But other things took much longer to know. Learning to restitch life–and love–when everything’s changed, and finding who we are afterward, can be the longest journey of all.

I’m Lindsey O’Connor, and this is the story of my long awakening.

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.

Trapped by Irene Hannon: A Review

Trapped by Irene HannonHiring PI James Devlin to find her runaway sister, Laura Griffith knows it’s a race against time to find the young girl. As a blizzard shrouds the Midwest, the teen’s trail disappears into the swirling snow. Someone else is determined to cover her tracks. In Hannon’s second installment of her Private Justice Series she ratchets up the tension from the get-go leaving readers biting nails to the quick as the pages turn.
No one disputes Hannon’s ability to write an excellent romantic thriller. However, as Hannon also writes for the inspirational market, too often she is light on the gospel message. Not so in Trapped. Faith and mystery walk hand in hand as Laura’s anchor in God, despite the desperate search for her sister, lights the way for Dev, who’s faith has faltered in the midst of personal loss. Bravo for an excellent read!

Watch the trailer on YouTube:

When librarian Laura Griffth’s sixteen-year-old sister disappears on a frigid February day, leaving only a brief note behind, Laura resolves to do whatever it takes to track down the runaway teen. That includes recruiting ATF agent turned PI James “Dev” Devlin to help—but the deeper he digs, the more he begins to suspect that something sinister is at work in the girl’s disappearance. And the closer he gets to uncovering the truth, the clearer it becomes that the situation isn’t just dangerous—it’s deadly.

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.

Rules of Murder

Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering

I was excited to read Julianna Deering’s, “Rules of Murder,” because the 1920’s setting seemed like a fresh and fun setting for a mystery. And sure enough, the story paints a vivid picture of the Roaring Twenties in all its glory. Though the period slang feels a tad overdone at times, it seemed to fit amateur detective Drew Farthering’s character. The snappy romantic dialogue between Drew and his love also added some fun to the mix. I also appreciated the pace of Drew’s faith development—it had a genuine ring to it and closed the story with some finesse. Yet, it was difficult to get past those first few chapters.

A number of times I had to go back and reread a portion of the story to figure out who the people actually were. Then, when the first dead body is discovered it seems to take would-be-detective, Drew, eons to discover it’s a case of mistaken identity. Of course, all is not what it seems, but by the time the mystery unravels it’s all just so frustrating. When the murderer is finally revealed I had no satisfying “aha”, only a sigh of relief that all the subterfuge was finally over. It is one thing to try and circumvent, “the rules of murder,” but the reader should never feel cheated. Deering broke her contract with me very early on.

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.

A Warm Welcome in Last Chance

Welcome to Last Chance by Cathleen ArmstrongCathleen Armstrong pens a strong feisty heroine that jumps to life in the opening pages.  When Lainie Davis’s beat up Mustang dies on the edge of Last Chance, New Mexico she doesn’t know it yet, but her luck has changed. Though Ray Braden, handsome proprietor of the local watering hole, won’t give her the time of day, before the week is up Lainie’s got a place to stay and a job at the local diner.  And by Sunday she is out-manoeuvered by her elderly landlady and sitting in church. Amazed the steeple doesn’t collapse on her head, Lainie hasn’t realized that God is on her trail. She doesn’t know that he’s in the business of turning people’s lives around.

Armstrong’s cast of characters in Last Chance aren’t all pious and pretty, but they’re still familiar. They’re people that look a lot like our neighbour down the street, or the folks who sing in our church choir. And sometimes they look just like us. Either way the people of Last Chance have one thing in common:  They’re all in need of the grace of God.

Armstrong weaves a story with both charm and spunk; a story that sneaks in and steals your heart. So pull up a chair and take a detour into Last Chance, New Mexico. You’ll be glad you did.

The red warning light on her car dashboard may have driven Lainie Davis to seek help in the tiny town of Last Chance, New Mexico, but as she meets the people who make this one-horse town their home, it’s her heart that is flashing bright red warning lights. These people are entirely too nice, too accommodating, and too interested in her personal life–especially since she’s on the run and hoping to slip away unnoticed.

Yet in spite of herself, Lainie is increasingly drawn into the small-town dramas and to a handsome local guy with a secret of his own. Could Lainie actually make a life in this little town? Or will the past catch up to her even here in the middle of nowhere?

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.

Ultraviolet is Ultra-amazing!

Ultraviolet by R.J. AndersonIn Ultraviolet author R.J. Anderson tumbles us into the middle of every person’s worst nightmare. Alison comes to herself for the first time in weeks and realizes she’s in a mental hospital. She’s been afraid for a very long time; afraid that she is somehow different from everyone else. And not in a good way. And now she knows it’s true.

My kids have been urging me to read this book for a while now so I sat down with it this morning and didn’t get up until I’d tasted every last word. Anderson’s fresh and vivid style drew me like a roller coaster and by the last dip and curve I just wanted to do it all over again. It’s in my head now and I find myself sifting through words and objects almost catching hints of colour and flavour that I’ve never seen or tasted before. Wow! I can hardly wait to read the next installment in this series. Science fiction at its best.

Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.
This is not her story.
Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison’s condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison herself can’t explain what happened: one minute she was fighting with Tori — the next she disintegrated. Into nothing. But that’s impossible. Right?

 

Small Town Surprise

Small Town Girl by Ann G. GabhartSmall town Girl, tucked neatly into Rosey Corners is a lovely surprise. Though I promised to review it, American historicals, especially those set in war time, are not really my forte. Still, intrigued by the jacket, I picked it up and immersed myself in Kate and Jay’s story. Though the story unwinds at a bit of a slow pace, by the time I hit the middle I just couldn’t put it down. This book had me reading until far too late in the night! It brought laughter and misty tears and by the end I was ready to cheer. I’m hoping Gabhart has a few more stories in her because all I know is I want to visit Rosey Corners again! Bravo.

How long can two people stand on the brink of love without plunging in headfirst?

In the autumn of 1941, rumors of war whisper through Rosey Corner. The town practically vibrates with apprehension, as if it is holding its breath. But for Kate Merritt, it seems life is letting out a prolonged sigh. As Kate watches her sister marry the man Kate has loved since she was fifteen, her heart is silently breaking. And even the attentions of Jay Tanner, the handsome best man, can’t draw her interest.

Then suddenly, Pearl Harbor changes everything and Kate finds herself drawn to Jay in surprising ways. Could she truly be in love with him? And if he enlists, will she ever see him again?

In her gentle and textured style, Ann H. Gabhart tells a timeless story of love, sacrifice, and longing that will grip your heart and stir your spirit. Fans of Gabhart’s Angel Sister will love seeing Kate Merritt all grown-up, as well as other characters they have come to love.

“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”