Monday, October 21, 2019

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Promise for Tomorrow by Michelle De Bruin


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Welcome to the Cover Reveal for
Promise for Tomorrow
By Michelle De Bruin

Coming November 19, 2019...


Living a life of faith isn’t going the way Logan and Karen hoped until some special visitors arrive and offer them their future back.

Karen Millerson dreamed of teaching high school but now finds herself boarding with a farm family and teaching country school. She is engaged to marry Logan De Witt and is getting prepared to share in ministry with him. But when she gets blamed for the tragic fire at the school, Karen’s future grows uncertain.

Logan De Witt is working to clear his family’s name with the bank. But when he breaks his leg, hindering his ability to work the farm, Logan is faced with life-changing decisions. When his best friend can’t offer the help he requested, can Logan find a way to care for his family and court Karen at the same time before his love for her destroys all of them?

(Affiliate link included.)
Pre-order: Amazon


Other Books in the Series

Hope for Tomorrow
By Michelle De Bruin
Christian Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 294 Pages
October 23rd 2018 by Mantle Rock Publishing LLC

When Logan De Witt learns of his father’s sudden death, he returns home to the family’s dairy farm. During his stay, he discovers his mother’s struggle with finances and his younger sister’s struggle with grief. Concern for his family presses Logan to make the difficult decision to leave his career as a pastor and stay on the farm. As a way to make some extra money, he agrees to board the teacher for their local school.

Karen Millerson arrives from Chicago ready to teach high school but her position is eliminated so she accepts the role of country school teacher. Eager to put her family’s ugly past behind her, Karen begins a new career to replace the trust she lost in her own father who had been in ministry when she was a child.

Logan and Karen both sense a call from the Lord to serve him, but neither of them expected that one day they would do it together.

Can Karen learn to trust again? Will Logan lay aside his grief in exchange for God’s purpose for his life?

(Affiliate links included.)


About the Author


Michelle De Bruin is a worship leader and spiritual services provider. She lives in Iowa with her husband and two teenage sons. She writes stories about people who live in rural communities at the turn of the 20th century. Characters that bring to life the delights of farm and small town living, whispers of Dutch heritage, and Christian faith make her stories distinct.



Cover Reveal Giveaway



One winner will receive copies of Hope for Tomorrow and Promise for Tomorrow and a $20 Amazon eGift Card.

US only.
Ends October 25, 2019.

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Saturday, October 19, 2019

Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Fate of the Redeemed

Fate of the Redeemed JustRead Blog + Review Tour 

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour & Giveaway for Fate of the Redeemed by Chad Pettit, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK


Fate of the Redeemed by Chad Pettit 
Title: Fate of the Redeemed  
Series: Journey of Fate #2  
Author: Chad Pettit  
Publisher: Ambassador International 
Release Date: October 1, 2019  
Genre: Suspense Fantasy

An angel with amnesia. A demon with a vendetta. The man caught in their crossfire.

Lester Sharp has been given a second chance to live a life of compassion, but his decision to follow God will be tested when his estranged father calls to tell him his brother has been killed in combat. A demon unleashes a series of attacks on him, and someone he thought was lost to his past emerges.

Lester is guarded by the angel, Draven, but when Morane catches the watcher off his guard, Draven loses his memory and finds himself being held prisoner in a remote Somali village. His only ally is Ibrahim, a man who finds out his son has been murdered by extremists when his granddaughter appears out of nowhere and somehow possesses supernatural powers.

As Morane’s fury is unleashed, time is running out for Lester, and Draven’s fate is in the hands of a man whose faith is being pushed to the limit.  

While Lester fights for his life—and for his soul—will he make the right choices, or will he decide—once and for all—that he doesn’t need God? And why is one man so important in the midst of spiritual warfare?
 

EXCERPT


Town of Olympia, Eastern United States

The watcher stood silently, enshrouded by the ageless camouflage of the spirit realm. It is the place of no place, a tangible reality only to the immortal and supernatural players on a timeless battlefield for the souls of mankind. It is where “bumps in the night” are born, where unanticipated tempests of raging lightning and rain lash out on a fallen Earth as the elemental warriors dance their cosmic melee of undying death. 

The watcher smiled. Comfortably. Peacefully. Transitioning from his human form of dark skin and long dreadlocks, he kept his immortal gaze fixed on the quiet house, which he had just left and where a newly reformed soul now comforted a man snatched from the claws of death. A single light in the living room of the house remained on, its faint yellow glow piercing the night like a beacon atop a lone lighthouse faithfully guiding lost ships to its reassuring shores. 

He sighed and let down his guard to complete the transition. 

Dark brown, sinewy arms began to turn into thicker, but still slender, arms that blended into the shades of myriad colors surrounding him. He shifted his attention to this, enjoying the spell of the ever-changing skin tones. Dark green and shadow like the grass at his feet. Yellow, glowing like the light from the house. He turned his hand so the palm was facing him and wiggled his fingers in order to watch them rapidly change between the mixtures of color and light. 

His pleasure at the sight was intense but unmatched by the elation of the night’s victory. Centuries behind this invisible curtain, decade after decade watching unaware mortals go through their endless loop of birth and death, killing and being killed, starving and warring. Years passed like seconds to Draven, the watcher for so long, but tonight had been different. He had been allowed to go to one of them, to show his power in the presence of a mortal and be a part of the reclamation of a soul.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Chad Petitt 

Chad Pettit grew up lost in the world of fantasy fiction but alienated from a knowledge of God. With no real direction in his life, he shipped out for basic training twelve days after high school. He continued down a path of sin and destruction through two combat tours to Iraq, but then God pulled back the blinders, and he met his Lord and Savior. One passion that never left him was his love for fiction, and in 2013 he went back to school and earned his degree in English. This helped him develop his craft, spending long hours pounding away at the keys until his battles with guilt, fear, and shame came alive on the page.  

CONNECT WITH CHAD: Website | Facebook | Twitter

TOUR GIVEAWAY


(1) winner will receive a $10 B&N egift card

Fate of the Redeemed JustRead Giveaway

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight October 16, 2019 and last through 11:59 PM EST on October 23, 2019. US only. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.



Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

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*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

Friday, October 18, 2019

First Line Fridays: One Final Breath by Lynn Blackburn

Happy Friday! 

First Line Fridays is hosted by Hoarding Books and participants share the first line from a nearby book.

Today I'm sharing the first lines from One Final Breath by Lynn H. Blackburn:

"It didn't get much better than this."

What are you reading this weekend?

Have a great weekend! Happy reading!


About the Book:

Revenge has no statute of limitations.

When investigator Gabe Chavez had his cover blown by an aggressive reporter, the silver lining was being able to rejoin the dive team. The downside? Dive team captain Anissa Bell, a woman who both fascinates and frustrates him.

Anissa grew up as a missionary kid on the Micronesian island of Yap and always planned to return after college. But she remained stateside, determined to solve the case that haunts her--the murder of her best friend and the disappearance of a three-year-old child.

When Anissa's fractured past collides with Gabe's investigation into the tragic shooting death of a teenage boy in Lake Porter, they'll have to put aside their complicated history with each other in order to uncover the killer's identity. 

First Line Fridays hosted by Hoarding Books

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Book Review: The Courage to See: Daily Inspiration from Great Literature

About the Book:

Book lovers know there is something sacred in the stories, poetry, and insight of even the most secular books. This 365-day devotional celebrates the beauty of literature and its ability to illuminate elements of the Divine, present all around us. Pairing excerpts from more than two hundred literary works with thought-provoking Scriptures and brief prayers, this spiritual guide invites readers to draw closer to God through the words of both classic and modern authors.

View an excerpt of The Courage to See on the publisher's website.

My Thoughts:

The Courage to See by Greg Garrett and Sabrina Fountain is a hardcover devotional that combines literary quotes with Scripture and a concluding prayer. This daily devotional contains 365 entries and I read several a day in order to create a timely review. However, I think it would be lovely to read only one per day and combine the reading with a time of contemplation and prayer.

As to the content of The Courage to See, sometimes the correlation between the quote and the Scripture was obvious. Other times, I didn’t see how they were related until the prayer tied the idea together. I enjoyed the differing names of God used in the prayer portions. Not just familiar ones like Holy Father, Lord Jesus, and Christ Our Redeemer, but also Risen Lord, God who Speaks, Humble Christ, and Lord of Love.

I admired the diversity of literary passages in The Courage to See. Some derive from classic works of literature while others originate from modern novels. The topics address personal issues (healing, courage, forgiveness, etc) as well as broader issues (social justice, the mystery of life, the beauty of creation, etc).

I recommend The Courage to See by Greg Garrett and Sabrina Fountain to Christians who enjoy literature and seek a daily devotional to inspire and encourage. It would make a lovely gift for any literature lover, male or female.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Author Interview: Natalie Snapp on The Bathsheba Battle (Part One)

About the Book:

Find healing and hope when things haven't gone as planned.

Has your life ever taken an unexpected turn, leaving you feeling hurt and stuck?  In The Bathsheba Battle, Natalie Chambers Snapp helps women find healing and hope when things haven’t gone as they had planned. 

Bathsheba, typically misrepresented as an adulteress, is one of the most misunderstood women in the Bible. Despite an unexpected turn in her life, which resulted in tragic circumstances beyond her control, there are glimmers of hope in her story. By studying her life, readers will find healing from their own painful pasts and hope for living the free and full lives God intends. 

The Bathsheba Battle helps women find hope in the unexpected and unplanned.


Author Interview: 

Q: You describe Bathsheba as one of the most misunderstood women in the Bible. How is she typically misrepresented?

Bathsheba is often portrayed as the adulteress—as though she was a vixen with the intent to tempt David and hopefully, take her on as his wife. However, the fact remains that she was a victim of David’s own desires and paid a very dear price for his sin. Sadly, victims can sometimes be blamed and in the case of Bathsheba, that’s exactly what happened.

Q: What were some of the tragic circumstances that Bathsheba found herself in that were out of her control? How can we relate to her story today?

First of all, some commentaries claim Bathsheba was trying to entice David by bathing in the courtyard of her home. However, during the time in which Bathsheba lived, indoor plumbing didn’t exist! Therefore, most families had a basin in the courtyard for bathing purposes. When David saw her bathing, she was obeying the cleansing ritual required of women after monthly menstruation. She was not trying to entice David—she was simply following the rules of her culture! How would she even know David was going to be walking on his rooftop at the precise moment she was bathing?

When David saw Bathsheba, he was immediately impressed with her beauty and summoned her to his palace. During those days, when the king summoned you to the palace, you did not have a choice, you went. So off Bathsheba goes to meet David and once there, they have sex. We have no way of definitively knowing if David assaulted her, but she did go to his palace against her will. For that reason, we can speculate that was a likely possibility. Bathsheba became pregnant which is when things start to go off the rails!

David tries to hide his sin by summoning Bathsheba’s husband, Uriah, one of his most valuable warriors, home from the war (which is where David was supposed to be as well). Once Uriah reaches the palace, David proceeds to feed him a large meal and encourages him to drink a lot of wine so he will go home and have sex with Bathsheba. Problem solved! He can then pass his child off as Uriah’s, and no one needs to know about his sin. However, David failed to consider the fact that Uriah was a man of honor and refused to visit his wife when his men were still waging a war. Instead, he slept on the front porch of the palace with the servants. David tried a second night to get Uriah to visit his wife, but Uriah refused.

At this point in the story, we can see how sin will take you further than you ever wanted to go. Instead of confessing and coming clean to everyone, David orders Uriah to the frontlines of the battle, and of course, he is killed. Now, Bathsheba was possibly raped by the king, pregnant, and her husband is dead. All these things were out of her control.

After Uriah’s death, David takes Bathsheba as his wife. However, the restitution of David’s sin is the life of the child Bathsheba was carrying. Soon after the birth of David and Bathsheba’s son, the infant died. We see Bathsheba as a grieving mother, another event out of her control.

I think so many people can relate to Bathsheba’s story because 1) suffering happens to all of us and 2) sometimes, our suffering is the result of someone else’s actions and choices. In no way should we remain victims, but I think Bathsheba’s story is God’s way of telling us that He sees us, understands our pain, and is the Ultimate Justifier.

Q:  Can you share about a hardship or disappointment in your own life that provided the inspiration to write The Bathsheba Battle?

Absolutely! When I was in my late twenties, I was married to a man with a drug problem, but I did not know it. As many who have loved addicts understand, there are often behaviors corresponding with addiction that are not healthy for a young marriage and therefore, we divorced. Two months after I filed for divorce, my father, who was in and out of my life due to his own addiction issues, passed away unexpectedly.

Life had definitely taken a very unexpected turn and was not at all going the way I had planned. It was a dark season, and yet also the very season in which I became a follower of Jesus. My deconstruction led to my reconstruction. I have been remarried for fifteen years and have three beautiful children; however, periods of suffering have also been peppered throughout those years as well. Suffering is often cyclical and that has been true of my life!

Q: Explain how transformation happens during renovation. Where does renovation take place?

It sounds so trite, and I’m not going to lie, there were times during my own periods of suffering when I just wanted to scream when people said this to me. But the fact remains, when we are deconstructed by trauma and circumstances in or beyond our control, if we humble ourselves to the process, we will indeed emerge with greater wisdom and grace. Suffering is the great equalizer—it does not discriminate between gender, race, beliefs, or socio-economic status. No one is immune. However, if we humble ourselves to the process, we will emerge with new eyes of strength and dignity.

Q: Do we always have the ability to choose how we respond to our situation? Why is this such a significant choice, especially when we must endure a consequence of someone else’s sin?

Yes, I believe we do. We can’t always control what happens to us, but we can always control how we will respond. Living life as a victim will ultimately make you feel powerless, depressed, and distrustful of people. It will lead to a life of bitterness, resentment, and anger. On the other hand, when we respond to our trauma with a humble heart and a willingness to be molded by our suffering, we feel empowered, strong, and able to help others when their time of suffering emerges. When we choose to live as victims, we give others power over our lives. When we choose to live as survivors, we understand that we possess the power ourselves.

Q: How does your study on Bathsheba shift from part one of the book to part two?

In Part One, we discuss the byproducts of our suffering: fear, shame, anger, and comparison. In Part Two, we look at how to overcome these negative emotions and live empowered and with hope.

Q: What does Bathsheba’s story teach us about forgiveness?

We don’t really know about Bathsheba’s forgiveness process because it’s not discussed in the Bible. However, we do see her stand before David in 1 Kings 1 with an empowered and confident voice that exhibits love and respect towards her husband. Perhaps somewhere during the course of their marriage, Bathsheba made peace with her circumstances—she chose her response and not to live as a victim.

Not living as a victim involves forgiveness and yet, this does not mean she might not have felt like a victim for a while. It doesn’t mean that she didn’t feel shameful. And it doesn’t mean that she didn’t grieve the loss of the life she thought she might have. It does, however, indicate that she chose to keep moving forward without allowing her grief and shame to negatively impact who she ultimately became. A woman who is victorious over suffering is the most beautiful and inspiring to us all. 








Friday, October 11, 2019

First Line Fridays: Code of Valor by Lynette Eason

Happy Friday! 

First Line Fridays is hosted by Hoarding Books and participants share the first lines from a nearby book.

Today I'm sharing the first lines from Code of Valor by Lynette Eason:

"The broker rose from his chair and glared at the imbecile standing on the other side of the desk. 'We paid you well to steal that boat. Where is it?'"

What are you reading this weekend?

Have a great weekend! Happy reading!


About the Book:

She's living proof that what you don't know could kill you

What Detective Brady St. John really needs is a relaxing vacation. Unfortunately, just as the sun is setting on his second day at a friend's cabin on Lake Henley, he hears a scream and races to rescue a woman from her would-be killer. When the killer escapes only to return to finish the job, Brady vows to utilize all of his many resources to keep her safe--and catch those who would see her dead.


Financial crimes investigator Emily Chastain doesn't trust many people. And even though she's trying to cooperate with the detective who saved her life, there are some things she doesn't know--and some things you just don't share with a stranger. Little does she suspect that what she doesn't know just might get them both killed.



First Line Fridays hosted by Hoarding Books

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Book Review: Unscripted by Davis Bunn

About the Book:

Line producer Danny Byrd is well known in Hollywood for being someone who gets things done on time and under budget. But when his reputation takes a beating after his partner--and former best friend--makes off with their investors' money, Danny has but one chance to redeem himself and restore his ruined career.

LA lawyer Megan Pierce has sacrificed years of her life proving herself to impossible bosses, only to find herself disgusted at their snobbery and their specious business practices. When an opportunity to actually make a difference comes her way, she knows she has to grab it--even though she's not entirely clear what "it" is.


Danny and Megan are each other's best hope for redemption. What they never could have imagined was that they might also be each other's best hope for love.



My Thoughts:

Unscripted by Davis Bunn is a stand-alone, contemporary fiction novel. With smooth prose, authentic characters, and a compelling start, Unscripted entices the reader into the glamour and complexity of Hollywood.

The characters in Unscripted are perhaps its brightest star. Megan, one of the main characters, was strong, smart, and easy to admire. Her personality fit flawlessly with her profession and situation. Even the secondary characters perfectly suited their roles and enhanced the story in a meaningful way. Annie, Jennie, Myron, Louisa, and Lane, were just some of the likable secondary characters.  Add to the characters, a mystery and a dash of romance, and you have a good book.

I recommend Unscripted by Davis Bunn to readers who enjoy contemporary fiction with strong characters and an interesting setting. There are subtle Christian values and brief mentions of Megan’s father’s faith, but it’s a light thread, not “preachy” at all.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.