Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Still Life - Plus a Cool Contest!


Still Life
Chesapeake Valor, Book 2
Dani Pettrey
(Bethany House Publishers)
ISBN: 978-0764212956
January 2017/352 pages/$15.99


Someone Is Out There. Watching Her. Waiting.

Blacklisted in the photography business over a controversial shot, Avery Tate answered an ad for a crime-scene photographer. She expected to be laughed at, but crime-scene analyst Parker Mitchell hired her outright--and changed her life. But six months ago, when her feelings for Parker became too strong, she left his employ to sort out her heart.

Now, for the first time, Avery is facing the world that rejected her to attend the gallery opening of a photography exhibit for which her friend modeled. But the only image of her friend is a chilling photo of her posing as if dead--and the photographer insists he didn't take the shot. Worse, her friend can't be found, and so Avery immediately calls Parker for help.

As Avery, Parker, and their friends in law enforcement dig into the mystery, they find themselves face-to-face with a relentless and deadly threat.


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dani Pettrey is a wife, home-schooling mom, and the acclaimed author of the Alaskan Courage romantic suspense series, which includes her bestselling novels Submerged, Shattered, Stranded, Silenced, and Sabotaged. Her books have been honored with the Daphne du Maurier award, two HOLT Medallions, two National Readers' Choice Awards, the Gail Wilson Award of Excellence, and Christian Retailing's Best Award, among others.

She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves--the thrill of adventure, nail-biting suspense, the deepening of her characters' faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland, where they enjoy time with their two daughters, a son-in-law, and two super adorable grandsons. You can find her online at danipettrey.com.


MY THOUGHTS

Wow. Dani Pettrey has outdone herself with this one. I was thoroughly engrossed in this story and read it practically in one sitting. From the fitting title to the connection between Avery's job as a crime-scene photographer and the involvement of photography in the disappearance of her friend, Still Life is a picture-perfect suspense! Pettrey tugs at the emotions as chilling crime scenes intertwine with the heat of underlying romantic tension. I wasn't quite sure if I needed a blanket or a fan as I read. I'm excited to read more about Avery and Parker as this series continues. Grab your copy of Still Life today!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Dani Pettrey and Baker/Bethany House for a blog tour. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


CHESAPEAKE VALOR SERIES - MY REVIEWS

Cold Shot





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Monday, February 20, 2017

Moving Target


Moving Target
Elite Guardians #3
Lynette Eason
(Revell)
ISBN: 978-0800723248
January 2017/336 pages/$15.99


Intensity. Skill. Tenacity.
The bodyguards of Elite Guardians Agency have it all.


When Maddy McKay and Quinn Holcombe don't show up for Quinn's birthday party, his friends know that something is very wrong. Their search turns up little beyond evidence that Quinn and Maddy have vanished. And it soon becomes apparent that they did not leave of their own accord.

Maddy awakens in a cement room with no idea where she is. But it's not long before she realizes she's in the clutches of a madman who exacts revenge through games--hunting games. His prey of choice? Humans. Now Maddy and Quinn must run for their lives and outwit their killer when their game begins.

Because if they don't win this game . . . they die.


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lynette Eason is the bestselling author of the Women of Justice series, the Deadly Reunions series, and the Hidden Identity series, as well as Always Watching and Without Warning in the Elite Guardians series. She is the winner of two ACFW Carol Awards, the Selah Award, and the Inspirational Readers' Choice Award. She lives in South Carolina. Learn more at www.lynetteeason.com.

MY THOUGHTS

Wow. I thought the first two books in this series were amazing, but Lynette Eason manages to surpass her own standard of excellence with the release of Moving Target. Fair warning: this is not a book to casually grab, thinking you'll read a quick chapter or two. On the contrary, dinner will burn, responsibilities will be ignored, and sleep will be forgotten until the final sentence comes to a close. Eason pulls out all the stops in this chilling suspense with likeable characters and unrelenting heart-pounding action. She perfectly paces each word and action, stretching each scene so taut, the pages almost snapped from the tension as I turned them. Crisp dialogue adds urgency, and the result kept me reading as fast I could turn the pages. Each book in this series stands alone but they focus on a different member of the Elite Guardians team, so they do have intertwining characters. I'm already looking forward to the fourth and final book, Chasing Secrets, coming in August! Don't miss this compelling series. Get your copy of Moving Target today!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Baker/Revell Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



ELITE GUARDIANS NOVELS - MY REVIEWS

Always Watching
Without Warning
Moving Target


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Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Newcomer


The Newcomer
An Amish Beginnings Novel
Suzanne Woods Fisher
(Revell)
ISBN: 978-0800727499
January 2017/336 pages/$15.99

A fresh start in the New World will test Anna's resolve . . . and her heart

In 1737, Anna K├Ânig staggers off a small wooden ship after ten weeks at sea, eager to start a new life in the vibrant but raw Pennsylvania frontier. It's a time of new beginnings, and for Anna and Bairn's shipboard romance to blossom.

But this perfect moment cannot last. As Bairn grasps the reality of what it means to be Amish in the New World, his enthusiasm evaporates. When a ship captain offers him a first mate position, he grabs it. Just one more crossing, he promises Anna. But will she wait for him?

As a newcomer joins the church, Anna is torn. This man is everything Bairn is not--bold, devoted, and delighted to vie for her heart. And he is here. Bairn is not.

Far from the frontier, an unexpected turn of events weaves the lives of Bairn, Anna, and the newcomer together. When the secret is revealed, which true love will emerge?


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Suzanne Woods Fisher is the bestselling author of The Letters, The Calling, the Lancaster County Secrets series, and the Stoney Ridge Seasons series, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace. She is also the coauthor of an Amish children's series, The Adventures of Lily Lapp. Suzanne is a Carol Award winner for The Search, a Carol Award finalist for The Choice, and a Christy Award finalist for The Waiting. She is also a columnist for Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazines. She lives in California. Learn more at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com and connect with Suzanne on Facebook and Twitter @suzannewfisher.


MY THOUGHTS

Suzanne Woods Fisher is a must-read author for me, and I was intrigued by this story. Fisher wrote this for her readers who longed for a sequel to Anna's Crossing, a compelling 2015 release depicting the immigration of early Amish settlers from Germany in the eighteenth century. (My review of that novel is here.) Fisher once again brings setting and characters to life as she portrays the challenges of beginning a new life in the New World. Anna inspired my admiration with her resilience and determination in spite of disappointment, setbacks, and loss. The interactions between the members of the group and the way they solved problems and made decisions fascinated me. While it isn't required to read Anna's Crossing to enjoy this story, the experience is that much richer if you read both books. And really, you don't want to miss the chance to read this gifted author's work. The Newcomer is available online and at a bookseller near you. Grab your copy today!



Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book from Baker/Revell Publishing. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Justice Delayed


Justice Delayed
A Memphis Cold Case Novel
Patricia Bradley
(Revell)
ISBN: 978-0800727086
February 2017/352 pages/$15.99

In one week, the wrong man will be executed for murder.
Let the chase for the real killer begin.


Eighteen years ago, TV crime reporter Andi Hollister's sister was murdered. The convicted killer sits behind bars, his execution date looming. But when a letter surfaces stating that the condemned didn't do the crime, Detective Will Kincaide of the Memphis Cold Case Unit will stop at nothing to help Andi get to the bottom of it. After all, this case is personal: the man who confessed to the crime is Will's cousin. Andi and Will must find the real killer before the wrong person is executed. But what can happen in only a week? Uncovering police corruption, running for your life, and, perhaps, falling in love?

With the perfect mixture of intrigue and nail-biting suspense, award-winning author Patricia Bradley invites you to crack the case--if you can--alongside the best Memphis has to offer.


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Patricia Bradley is the award-winning author of Shadows of the Past, A Promise to Protect, Gone without a Trace, and Silence in the Dark. Winner of a Daphne du Maurier Award, a Touched by Love Award, and an Inspirational Readers Choice Award, Bradley is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America. She makes her home in Mississippi. Learn more at www.ptbradley.com.


MY THOUGHTS

Patricia Bradley is rapidly becoming a must-read author for me. Justice Delayed contains all the elements of a captivating suspense novel: a compelling plot, intriguing characters, heart-stopping scenes, and cloaked glimpses of the perpetrator. Each time I endeavored to set the book aside at the end of a chapter, a dangling twist made that virtually impossible. The urgency to discover the killer before the wrongly convicted man is executed ratchets up the suspense and I could practically hear the clock ticking as I read. Readers who have enjoyed DiAnn Mills's books, especially her Crime Scene: Houston cold case series, will find much to like about this new offering from Bradley. I'm already looking forward to book 2. Don't be guilty of "reading delayed." Get your copy of Justice Delayed now!



Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book from Baker/Revell Publishers. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



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Friday, February 3, 2017

ACFW New Releases - February 2017

Lots of great releases this month from ACFW authors!


Biblical:

Redeeming Grace by Jill Eileen Smith -- When famine visits Bethlehem, Boaz holds out hope for rain while his relative Elimelech moves his wife Naomi and their sons to Moab. For a while, it appears the Lord is blessing Elimelech's family, and his sons marry two lovely Moabite women. But calamities strike, one after another, leaving Naomi alone in a foreign land with only her childless daughters-in-law for comfort. When news reaches Naomi that the famine in Bethlehem has lifted, only Ruth will hazard the journey to her mother-in-law's homeland. Destitute and downhearted, Naomi resigns herself to a life of bitter poverty, but Ruth holds out hope for a better future. And Boaz may be the one God has chosen to provide it. (Biblical from Revell - A Division of Baker Publishing Group)


Biblical Romance:

Building Benjamin by Barbara M. Britton -- Naomi desires to dance well enough to catch the eye of a wealthy landowner. Her father needs a substantial bride price due to the deaths of her brothers at the hands of the tribe of Benjamin. But when Benjamites raid the Ephraimite feast and capture young girls, Naomi is bound and carried from her home by Eliab, a troubled shepherd who needs a wife. As Naomi awaits rescue, she finds Eliab has a strong faith in God and a just reason for abducting her. A reason that affects all the tribes of Israel. The future of the tribe of Benjamin hangs in the balance, but if Naomi follows her heart and stays with Eliab to rebuild his lineage, she must forfeit her family and become a traitor to her own tribe. (Biblical Romance from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])


Contemporary Romance:

Grace and the Rancher by Mary Alford -- Can a runaway singer and a makeshift rancher, thrust together by circumstance and held together by the common thread of loss and a love of music, find hope and a happily-ever-after under the stars of Delaney Mountain? (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])


 Capturing Beauty by Brenda S. Anderson -- Photographer Haven Carlysle is a changed man. He returns to Duluth to capture the North Shore's beauty ... and to recapture the love of his son. But that means making amends with his ex-girlfriend too. Enter Callie Beaumont. All her life, Callie has longed to work outdoors soaking up God-breathed beauty, and the opportunity is finally on the horizon. But being the liaison between the handsome photographer and his son has thrown her dreams, and her heart, into chaos. Can Haven capture her heart when she won't let him capture her image? And will his poor choices cost Callie her dream job and him the love of his son? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)


The Lawman's Secret Son by Lorraine Beatty -- Suddenly a Father Police officer Seth Montgomery knows all about order—but his world is thrown into chaos when he learns he has a five-year-old son. With little Jack suddenly in his care, Seth turns to neighbor Carrie Fletcher for help. Given her checkered past, Carrie prefers to keep to herself, but there's no denying she cares for the boy—and her feelings for charming Seth are rapidly developing, too. When someone from Carrie's past shows up threatening to jeopardize the life she's worked so hard to build, Carrie will have to fight for her future with the new family she's found...or risk losing everything. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Maybe It's You by Candace Calvert -- Micah Prescott's goal is to improve the Hope hospital image, but his role as a volunteer crisis responder is closer to his heart. The selfless work helps fill a void in his life left by family tragedy. So does a tentative new relationship with the compassionate, beautiful, and elusive ER nurse, Sloane Ferrell. Then a string of brutal crimes makes headlines, summons responders . . . and exposes disturbing details of Sloane's past. Can hope spring from crisis? (Contemporary Romance from Tyndale House)


A Second Chance by Alexis Goring -- Newly single food critic and newspaper reporter Traci Hightower is done with dating. After the man of her dreams left her at the altar on their wedding day and ran off with her “best friend,” Traci resigned herself to being a bachelorette for life. Marc Roberts is a political reporter who is known as Mr. Nice Guy, the one who always finishes last. But his widowed sister Gina Braxton appreciates his compassion and kindness, since she's raising her two kids alone. With God's guidance and the help of Gina's matchmaking skills honed by her career as a bestselling romance novelist, Traci and Marc find hope for their broken hearts. (Contemporary Romance from Forget Me Not Romances)


The Amish Wanderer by Laura V. Hilton -- After her daed, the bishop, is admitted to a mental hospital after hurting their small Amish community, Bethany Weiss is ready to get away from Jamesport, MO—and away from God. Silas Beiler, dogged by a rough childhood and a family who blames him for each new disaster, is hitchhiking toward Pennsylvania in hopes of stability. He sleeps in barns where he can and works for food when possible. When Bethany spies a man asleep in the hayloft, she first fears the return of an unwelcome suitor. But when it is Silas who turns and speaks, the memories flood back: a happy summer six years ago, full of lemonade, long walks, and budding courtship. Can their old love overcome both this new pain and the hurt and rejection of their past? (Contemporary Romance from Whitaker House)


Avalanche by Gayla K. Hiss -- Set in the North Cascades National Park of Washington State, Avalanche is the inspirational story of one man set on revenge and the woman who risks everything to help him find the fugitive who killed his partner. (Contemporary Romance from Mountain Brook Ink)


The Doctor's Texas Baby by Deb Kastner -- When Carolina Mason shows up in Haven, Texas, after a three-year absence, no one is more surprised than town veterinarian Wyatt Harrow. Especially when he sees Carolina's two-year-old son, Matty. Their son. How could she have kept his child a secret? Carolina doesn't deny the boy is his. She thought she was doing what was best for everyone when she left, but she realizes she was wrong. Though Wyatt is eager to make up for lost time with Matty, Carolina's not so sure that extends to her. Can these former sweethearts navigate their complicated past to make a family for their son? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Spring Raine by Delia Latham -- A last-minute decision sends a young woman to a seaside community and lodging at Paradise Pines...where life takes a whole new path. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])



Finding Joy by Melanie D. Snitker -- A horrific accident changed everything for Parker Wilson. He returns to his family's ranch, the scars on his face a daily reminder of all he's lost, yet his mom still insists he needs to stop hiding and live his life again. The beautiful new employee she hires is the last thing he needs, and he'll do whatever it takes to make the girl quit and regain the peace and quiet he prefers. Only deep desperation could force Chelsea Blake to work on a cattle ranch. But if she's going to avoid her parents' judgment when they arrive in three weeks, she must turn the temporary job into a permanent one. Between dodging mud, feeding longhorn cattle, and dealing with a handsome boss who keeps giving her the cold shoulder, staying gainfully employed is proving to be a challenge. Chelsea may not be cut out for ranch life, but her determination to succeed is stronger than Parker's efforts at forcing her to leave. Surprisingly alike, will the two set aside their disapproval to find immeasurable joy? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)


General Fiction:

The Secret Heart by Marie Wells Coutu -- After a whirlwind romance, beautiful Shawna Moore marries Hunter Wilson, the governor of Tennessee. Now, she wonders if the governor ever loved her or only hoped to avoid a scandal. In this modern re-imagining of the biblical story of Bathsheba and King David, an investigative reporter is asking questions--the wedding took place only six weeks following the death of Shawna's first husband in Iraq. If he discovers the truth about Shawna's baby, Hunter's chances for reelection, as well as Shawna's reputation, will be ruined. But keeping their secret is destroying their marriage. Will Hunter's choice mean the end of his political career or his family? (General Fiction from Write Integrity Press)


Home at Last by Deborah Raney -- All her life, Shayla Michaels, owner of the Coffee's On bakery, has felt as if she straddled two worlds. Her mother's white family labeled her African American father with names Shayla didn't repeat in polite--well, in any company. Her father's family disapproved as well, though they eventually embraced Shayla as their own. After the death of her mother, and her brother Jerry's incarceration, life has left Shayla's father bitter, her niece, Portia, an orphan, and Shayla responsible for them all. She knows God loves them all, but why couldn't people accept each other for what was on the inside? For their hearts? Everything changes one icy morning when Portia runs into the street and Link Whitman nearly hits her with his pickup. Soon he is falling in love with Shayla. Can they overcome society's view of their differences and find true love? (General Fiction from Abingdon Press)


Baggage Claim by Cathe Swanson -- When Ben Taylor, widower and single dad, gets caught up in a dangerous insurance fraud network, he has to learn to take a stand for right - and make a leap of faith: can he trust his nanny - who isn't quite what she appears to be - and his newly-discovered biological father to hide and protect his four young children? (General Fiction, Independently Published)


Historical Romance:

The Matchmaker Brides Collection by Diana Lesire Brandmeyer, Amanda Cabot, Lisa Carter, Ramona K. Cecil, Lynn A. Coleman, Susanne Dietze, Kim Vogel Sawyer, Connie Stevens and Liz Tolsma -- Meet nine women of the late 1800s who have found themselves in the role of matchmaker. They think they have mastered the art of recognizing romantic potential in others, but when it comes to their own lives they have been unlucky in love. In small communities from Tennessee to Colorado, Wyoming to Indiana, love unexpectedly enters the women's lives with men they never imagined marrying. But what will it take to get these ladies to say "I do"? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)


The Viscount's Proposal by Melanie Dickerson -- Leorah Langdon has no patience for Regency society's shallow hypocrisy and unnecessary rules, especially for women. She's determined to defy convention by marrying for grand passion instead of settling for a loveless union like her parents--or wedding a stuffy, pompous gentleman like Edward, the Viscount Withinghall. But when a chance meeting in the countryside leads to Leorah and Withinghall being discovered in his overturned carriage--alone and after dark--the ensuing gossip may force them together.Withinghall has his reasons for clinging to propriety and he certainly has no time for a reckless hoyden like Miss Langdon. But soon the two discover that Withinghall's coach "accident" was no such thing: the vehicle was sabotaged. Strong-willed Leorah and duty-driven Withinghall will have to work together if they have any hope of saving her reputation, his political career--and his life. (Historical Romance from Waterfall Press)


The Reluctant Guardian by Susanne Dietze -- When Gemma Lyfeld inadvertently interrupts a dangerous smuggling operation in her English village, she's rescued by a mysterious Scottish spy. Now with criminals after her and her hopes for an expected marriage proposal recently dashed, she will make her society debut in London. But not without the man tasked with protecting her... Covert government agent Tavin Knox must keep Gemma safe from the criminals who think she can identify them—a mission he never wanted. But as he escorts her and her rascally nephews around London, the lovely English lass proves braver than he ever imagined. Suddenly, the spy who works alone has one Season to become the family man he never dreamed he'd be. (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Shine like the Dawn by Carrie Turansky -- In a quiet corner of northern Edwardian England, Margaret Lounsbury diligently works in her grandmother's millinery shop, making hats and caring for her young sister. Several years earlier, a terrible event reshaped their family, shattering an idyllic life and their future prospects. An even which...might not have been an accident. When Nathaniel Harcourt returns from his time in the Royal Navy and inherits his father's vast estate, Morningside Manor, he also assumes partial control of his father's engineering company and the duty of repaying an old debt to the Lounsbury family. But years of separation between Nate and Maggie have taken a toll and Maggie struggles to trust her old friend. Will the search for the truth about her parents' death draw the two friends closer or leave them both with broken hearts? (Historical Romance from Waterbrook Multnomah)


The Bounty Hunter's Baby by Erica Vetsch -- Bounty hunter Thomas Beaufort has no problem handling outlaws, but when he's left with a criminal's baby to care for, he's in over his head. And the only person he can think of to ask for help is Esther Jensen, the woman whose heart he broke when he left town. But can he convince her to put aside the past until he tracks down the baby's outlaw father? Esther is ready to run Thomas off her Texas ranch--until she spies the abandoned newborn in his arms. Soon, working together to care for the precious babe stirs old hopes of a family. With trouble heading to their door, they could overcome it together--if she'll entrust her wary heart to this sweet, second-chance family... (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])


Thriller/Suspense:

Raging Storm by Vannetta Chapman -- When a massive solar flare wiped out all modern technology across the globe, the small town of Abney, Texas, was thrown into chaos. Shelby Sparks and her diabetic teenage son, Carter, have found refuge, but Shelby knows Carter can't survive without insulin--and Shelby will risk her life traveling to Austin to make sure he gets it. Shelby's best friend and high school sweetheart, Max Berkman, won't let her make the journey alone. Together, they reach the capital--only to discover that Austin has turned into an urban nightmare on the brink of anarchy. Now the only thing more uncertain than finding what they need is the hope of making it out of the city alive. (Thriller/Suspense from Harvest House Publishers)


Speculative:

Time Search by Danele J. Rotharmel -- While the TEMCO staff searches for clues to unravel the mystery of his real name, their enemy is lurking in the shadows searching for his targets--it's anyone's guess whose search will be completed first! (Speculative/Time Travel Fiction from Prism Book Group)


Western Romance:

Long Time Gone by Mary Connealy -- Rancher Justin Boden is normally an unshakable and rugged man, but with his brother, Cole, shot and in mortal danger, even a tough man faces doubts. And it doesn't help that Angie DuPree, the assistant to the doctor trying to save Cole, is as distracting a woman as Justin ever laid eyes on. With her and the doc's timely skills, Cole looks to be on the mend, and Justin and the rest of the Bodens can turn their attention back to the dangers facing them. It's clear now that everything that's occurred is part of a much bigger plot that could date back to a decades-old secret. Can they uncover all the pieces before danger closes in on them, or is the threat to the ranch even bigger than any of the Bodens could imagine? (Western Romance from Bethany House [Baker])


OTHER ACFW RELEASES I'M EXCITED TO REVIEW THIS MONTH

A Note Yet Unsung by Tamera Alexander (Bethany House Publishers)

Moving Target by Lynette Eason (Revell)


Still Life by Dani Pettrey (Bethany House)


Justice Delayed by Patricia Bradley (Revell)


The Newcomer by Suzanne Woods Fisher (Revell)


Rescue Me by Susan May Warren (Revell)


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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Maybe It's You


Maybe It's You
(Crisis Team)
Candace Calvert
(Tyndale House Publishers)
ISBN: 978-1414390369
February 2017/448 pages/$14.99

Privacy means safety. But hospital PR wants her face on a billboard.

ER nurse Sloane Ferrell escaped her risky past—new name, zip code, job, and a fresh start. She’s finally safe, if she avoids a paper trail and doesn’t let people get too close. Like the hospital’s too-smooth marketing man with his relentless campaign to plaster one “lucky” employee’s face on freeway billboards.

Micah Prescott’s goal is to improve the Hope hospital image, but his role as a volunteer crisis responder is closer to his heart. The selfless work helps fill a void in his life left by family tragedy. So does a tentative new relationship with the compassionate, beautiful, and elusive Sloane Ferrell.

Then a string of brutal crimes makes headlines, summons responders . . . and exposes disturbing details of Sloane’s past.

Can hope spring from crisis?


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Candace Calvert is a former ER nurse and author of the Mercy Hospital, Grace Medical, and Crisis Team series. Her medical dramas offer readers a chance to "scrub in" on the exciting world of emergency medicine. Wife, mother, and very proud grandmother, Candace makes her home in northern California. Please visit her website at www.candacecalvert.com.



MY THOUGHTS

If a book has Candace Calvert's name on it, I know to set aside plenty of time to read it because it will be impossible to put down. Maybe It's You met--and even exceeded--those expectations. In her inimitable style, Calvert brings her characters to life amidst the hectic pace of a hospital's emergency department. The third in her Crisis Team series, this novel spotlights members of the trauma team who might be lesser known, the crisis responders who show up on the scene to provide emotional support to victims, survivors, and next of kin. Calvert once again demonstrates why she has been dubbed the author of Medical Hope Operas as she seamlessly weaves together elements of suspense, danger, romance, and faith. Authentic and even gritty at times, Maybe It's You shines with hope. I'd say it's just what the doctor ordered for your reading list. Don't miss it!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”






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Monday, January 30, 2017

An Uncommon Courtship


An Uncommon Courtship
(Hawthorne House #3)
Kristi Ann Hunter
(Bethany House)
ISBN: 978-0764218262
January 2017/352 pages/$14.99


Lord Trent Hawthorne couldn't be happier he is not the duke in the family. Free to manage his small estate and take his time discovering the life he wants to lead, he has grand plans of someday wooing and falling in love with the woman of his choice. When he finds himself honor bound to marry a woman he barely knows, his dream of a loving marriage like his parents' seems lost forever.

Life for Lady Adelaide Bell was easier when she hid in her older sister's shadow--which worked until her sister got married. But even with her socially ambitious mother's focus entirely on her, the last thing she expected was a marriage of convenience before she's been introduced to society.

With nothing going as expected, can Trent and Adelaide's marriage of obligation survive their own missteps and the pressures of London society to grow into a true meeting of hearts and minds?


Read an excerpt.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kristi Ann Hunter graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in computer science but always knew she wanted to write. Kristi is the author of the Hawthorne House series and a 2016 RITA Award winner and Christy Award finalist. She lives with her husband and three children in Georgia. Find her online at www.kristiannhunter.com.

MY THOUGHTS

Kristi Ann Hunter became a must-read author for me with her debut novel, A Noble Masquerade, and she continues to delight with the third book in her Hawthorne House series. While numerous stories have been written about "shotgun weddings" or marriages of convenience, Hunter addds twists that make An Uncommon Courtship uniquely fresh and utterly captivating. Adelaide's timidity and uncertainty, resulting from her mother's willful negligence, collide with Trent's bumbling efforts at courting his wife, and the result is both amusing and cringe-inducing. An unconventional arrangement with his household servants adds to the awkwardness of their situation. Witty repartee interspersed with moments of tension and altercation make for lively reading, yet Hunter weaves in tender and poignant moments as well. Sigh-worthy and completely satisfying, An Uncommon Courtship is a must-read. While it stands alone from the earlier novels in this series, you'll want to read them all. Don't miss this engaging story!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book from Kristi Ann Hunter and Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Q&A WITH KRISTI ANN HUNTER

1. This book has an unusual beginning for a romance novel. Why did you choose to start it that way?
On page one, we find ourselves at the wedding breakfast of the hero and heroine. The vows are already completed and Lord Trent, whom many readers have gotten to know in the rest of the series, is suddenly married. I started it this way because I wanted it to be a bit of a shock for the readers, just like the marriage was a shock for Trent and Adelaide.

2. How does An Uncommon Courtship fit in with the rest of the Hawthorne House series?
Lord Trent is the younger son of the Hawthorne siblings. He’s taken his family role seriously in the previous books, but he’s never truly had to take on any responsibility until now. Readers of the free e-novella A Lady of Esteem may recognize Lady Adelaide’s family. She is the forgotten daughter of Lady Crampton. After spending a life overshadowed by her ambitious sister, Lady Helena, she finds herself forced to suddenly decide for herself what she wants in life. Several other characters will also be familiar to readers of the novella, since Trent is now living in Amelia’s old house.

3. What aspects of the story were more difficult to handle?
A married couple, particularly a married couple in the early 1800s, has a very different relationship than an unmarried couple, yet at the same time Trent and Adelaide are faced with all of the same problems that a new couple would have outside of marriage. They don’t know each other and don’t know what the other likes, feels, or thinks; yet, at the same time, they are living together and forced to face the expectations of everyone outside the marriage. Finding the balance between being married and being strangers was an interesting aspect of the story to explore. At times, the hero and heroine turned into their own villain as they, too, tried to find their footing in an out-of-balance situation.

4. How are the spiritual elements of this story different from the other ones in the series?
An Uncommon Courtship focuses a good bit more on godly relationships and how those impact your personal walk with God than some of the other books. There are scenes I particularly love where a group of God-honoring men gather together to help each other follow God more closely. Trent and Adelaide especially find themselves struggling in their marriage until they realize they need to bring God into the relationship as well.


Many thanks to Bethany House Pulishers and Kristi Ann Hunter for providing this Q&A!



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Monday, January 23, 2017

The Reluctant Guardian


The Reluctant Guardian
Susanne Dietze
(Love Inspired Historicals)
ISBN: 978-0373425136
February 2017/288 pages/$5.99


Under the Spy's Protection

When Gemma Lyfeld inadvertently interrupts a dangerous smuggling operation in her English village, she's rescued by a mysterious Scottish spy. Now with criminals after her and her hopes for an expected marriage proposal recently dashed, she will make her society debut in London. But not without the man tasked with protecting her…

Covert government agent Tavin Knox must keep Gemma safe from the criminals who think she can identify them—a mission he never wanted. But as he escorts her and her rascally nephews around London, the lovely English lass proves braver than he ever imagined. Suddenly, the spy who works alone has one Season to become the family man he never dreamed he'd be.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Susanne Dietze began writing love stories in high school, casting her friends in the starring roles. Today, she's the award-winning author of almost a dozen historical romances who's seen her work on the ECPA and Publisher's Weekly Bestseller Lists for Inspirational Fiction. Married to a pastor and the mom of two, Susanne lives in California and enjoys fancy-schmancy tea parties, genealogy, the beach, and curling up on the couch with a costume drama and a plate of nachos. Learn more at her website and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.


MY THOUGHTS

This is the second of Susanne Dietze's novels that I have read and she is quickly becoming a must-read author for me. Set in one of my favorite time periods, The Reluctant Guardian gripped me from the opening pages, and I had to force myself to set it aside when other responsibilities had the audacity to take precedence over reading time! The stringent expectations of societal mores and the excitement of Gemma's debut--albeit belated-- London season combine with the danger and suspense that Tavin desperately tries to keep far from her, making this a heart-pounding read. Dietze brillantly weaves all the elements of this story together, and the ending totally surprised me. Add this book to your February must-read list, and watch for more from this talented author!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book from Susanne Dietze. I was not required to write a review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”



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