Monday, July 16, 2018

Darkwater Secrets


Darkwater Secrets
Darkwater Inn, Book 1
Robin Caroll
(Gilead Publishing)
ISBN: 978-1683700685
July 2017/272 pages/$15.99

A murder investigation uncovers sordid secrets and haunting mistakes

The Darkwater Inn stands tall and proud in the French Quarter, the hub of New Orleans. Bourbon Street is bustling, and general manager Adelaide Fountaine has her hands full with a hotel at capacity. But she is shocked when a body is found: a hotel guest stabbed with a kitchen knife.

Detective Beau Savoie, Adelaide's childhood friend, is on the case. As Beau digs into the victim's past, he unearths a shocking connection between Adelaide and the murdered guest. Beau is hurt that his friend--the woman he's quietly loved for years--kept the truth from him. To make matters worse, the stress of the investigation has sent Adelaide right into the comforting arms of her coworker Dimitri. But Beau can't press Adelaide too hard . . . because he's keeping secrets of his own.

Can Adelaide and Beau afford to hide from the truth with a killer on the loose?





ABOUT THE AUTHOR

“I love boxing. I love Hallmark movies. I love fishing. I love scrapbooking. Nope, I’ve never fit into the boxes people have wanted to put me in.” ~Robin Caroll is definitely a contradiction, but one that beckons you to get to know her better. When she isn’t writing, Robin spends quality time with her husband of twenty-six years, her three beautiful daughters and two handsome grandsons, and their character-filled pets at home.

Robin gives back to the writing community by serving as Executive Director/Conference Director for ACFW. Her books have finaled/placed in such contests as the Carol Award, Holt Medallion, Daphne du Maurier, RT Reviewer’s Choice Award, Bookseller’s Best, and Book of the Year.

Visit her website or connect with her on social media.



MY THOUGHTS

Robin Caroll once again displays her ability to rob me of all sense of time or place in her brand-new thriller. Even the titles of this series and first novel send a chill up my spine. While I'm not sure I would be brave enough to actually spend a weekend at a hotel with such a name as Darkwater Inn, I gladly "checked in" for the length of time it took me to devour this story. Caroll weaves a mysterious tale populated with believable and sympathetic characters and a plot that becomes more complex with every chapter. Each time I thought I had determined the resolution and identified the culprit, a new layer took me another direction. As always, Caroll's expert pacing and ability to make the reader vicariously experience each emotion and situation kept me glued to the pages. A subtle but steady faith message reminds the reader of the long-term damage that buried secrets cause. Darkwater Secrets is a must for your summer reading list.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book free from Gilead Publishing and NetGalley 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.”



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Monday, July 9, 2018

Miss Serena's Secret


Miss Serena's Secret
Regency Brides: The Promise of Hope, Book 2
Carolyn Miller
(Kregel Publications)
ISBN: 978-0825445347
July 2018/344 pages/$14.99

With devastating scars in her past, Serena Winthrop is sure no man can be trusted--especially not a man like the too-smooth Viscount Carmichael. His reputation as a flirt and a gambler is everything she despises. And the young artist makes sure that this disreputable heir to an earldom knows of her deep disapproval whenever they encounter one another.

Henry, Lord Carmichael, is perfectly aware of his charms. He's gambled with plenty of ladies' hearts as easily as he has with their husbands' money. But lately he's wondered if there's more to life--and if his actions might prove unworthy of an admirable wife such as his friends have found.

When Serena's guardian asks his best friend to protect his young ward, Henry promises to be on his best behavior and not to woo her. But the more he learns of her, the more he realizes she might be his best reason for changing his character.

Then the lady's painting leads her to London infamy. Now Henry must choose between the life mapped out for him as the earl apparent and the love of his life. And Serena's secret may mean the end of his titled family line.

This second novel in a new series by internationally popular author Carolyn Miller is full of the rich historical detail and evocative writing her readers enjoy. The witty banter will continue to draw in fans of Jane Austen, Sarah Ladd, and Julie Klassen.


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Carolyn Miller lives in New South Wales, Australia, with her husband and four children. A longtime lover of Regency romance, Carolyn's novels have won a number of RWA and ACFW contests. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Australasian Christian Writers. Visit her website, www.carolynmillerauthor.com, to learn more.

MY THOUGHTS

Sigh. I became a fan of Carolyn Miller's writing last year with her debut series, Regency Brides: A Legacy of Grace, and she remains firmly on my must-read author list with this new series. Miss Serena's Secret capitivated me from the opening paragraphs and I couldn't set it aside until I finished. Endearing characters along with lively and witty repartee bring the Regency setting to life, and each emotion experienced by Serana found purchase within my own heart. Miller perfectly renders a sigh-worthy romance reminiscent of Jane Austen and other period authors. I'm already eager for The Making of Mrs. Hale, coming in November. Don't miss this fabulous book and series!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book free from Kregel Publishing and NetGalley 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.”


REGENCY BRIDES: THE PROMISE OF HOPE - MY REVIEWS

Winning Miss Winthrop



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Thursday, July 5, 2018

My Heart Belongs in Galveston, Texas


My Heart Belongs in Galveston, Texas
Kathleen Y'Barbo
(Barbour Publishing)
ISBN: 978-1683225003
July 2018/256 pages/$12.99

Journey now to Galveston, Texas, of 1880...
Where is Mrs. Smith’s granddaughter? Who is the mysterious Mrs. Smith?

Pinkerton agent Jonah Cahill is hired by the mysterious widow to find her lost granddaughter, rumored to be living in Galveston, Texas. Though Jonah prefers to travel alone, Mrs. Smith insists that she and her companion accompany him. Madeline Latour, investigative reporter, has been acting as Mrs. Smith’s assistant for several months, and Madeline will not allow anyone—even a Pinkerton agent—to ruin the story of a lifetime. The pair forges an uneasy truce as the investigation grows dangerous.

Is there a bigger story beyond a missing girl to be revealed?


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bestselling author Kathleen Y’Barbo is a multiple Carol Award and RITA nominee of more than eighty novels with almost two million copies in print in the US and abroad. She has been nominated for a Career Achievement Award as well a Reader’s Choice Award and is the winner of the 2014 Inspirational Romance of the Year by Romantic Times magazine. Kathleen is a paralegal, a proud military wife, and a tenth-generation Texan, who recently moved back to cheer on her beloved Texas Aggies. Connect with her through social media at kathleenybarbo.com.


MY THOUGHTS

Galveston, Texas is one of my family's favorite destinations, and I love discovering novels featuring this historical city. Kathleen Y'Barbo creates a delightful tale featuring engaging characters and an intriguing plot in the midst of this bustling city, including a lesser-known hurricane that impacted the area in the mid-1850s. I particularly loved the references to the site of Jean Lafitte's home, La Maison Rouge. Jonah and Madeline endeared themselves to me and their repartee made me laugh. A delightful blend of danger and romantic tension, as well as an unexpected villain, adds to the enjoyment of this story. My Heart Belongs in Galveston, Texas--and yours will, too! Don't miss this perfect summer read!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Barbour Publishing 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.”



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Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Minding the Light


Minding the Light
Minding the Light, Book 2
Suzanne Woods Fisher
(Revell)
ISBN: 978-0800721633
July 2018/336 pages/$15.99

How could I have expected so much? How could I have given her so little in return?"

Six long years ago, Captain Reynolds Macy sailed away from his bride, looking forward to the day when he would return to Nantucket Island with a ship's hold full of whale oil. But when that momentous day finally arrives, Ren soon discovers that everything has changed in his absence. Everything.

Unlike most islanders, bold and spirited Daphne Coffin doesn't defer to Ren as an authoritative whalemaster, but sees through his aloofness to the aching heart beneath. She encourages him to return to his Quaker roots and "mind the Light," finding solace in God and community. As Ren becomes the man she believes him to be--honorable, wise, faithful--she finds herself falling in love with him.

But how can she, when her heart is spoken for?


Read an excerpt.





ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than two dozen novels, including Phoebe's Light, Minding the Light, and The Light Before Day, as well as the Amish Beginnings, The Bishop's Family, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series. She is also the author of several nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Facebook (SuzanneWoodsFisherAuthor) and Twitter (@suzannewfisher).


MY THOUGHTS

I love curling up with a Suzanne Woods Fisher book for I know I will be immersed in a story that will delight as well as challenge and inspire me. Minding the Light is just such a novel, and I was swept away to nineteenth-century Nantucket Island and the fledgling Quaker whaling community introduced in Phoebe's Light. Once again, Fisher creates a multi-layered story filled with authentic tragedies and triumphs that befall the coastal community. Complex, relatable characters remind the reader that although centuries pass, people do not change so very much, and the need to "mind the Light" is as relevant today as it was then. I'm already eager for the third book in this series, The Light Before Day, coming in October. Don't miss this stirring novel and series.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from Revell Publishing 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.”


Click the cover below for my review of Book 1, Phoebe's Light.





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Monday, July 2, 2018

Dead Drift


Dead Drift
Chesapeake Valor, Book 4
Dani Pettrey
(Bethany House Publishers)
ISBN: 978-0764212970
July 2018/304 pages/$15.99


The Final Countdown to Stop an Imminent Attack Has Begun.

Burning debris littering the ground . . . smoke pluming in the acrid air . . . this is just the beginning if he fails.

Seven years ago, operative Luke Gallagher vanished to become part of an elite team set on capturing a deadly terrorist. When Luke returns to face those he left behind, their help becomes his only hope of stopping his target's latest threat of an attack that would shake America to its core.

Private investigator Kate Maxwell never stopped loving or looking for Luke after he disappeared. But she also never imagined he left her or his life by choice. Now he's back, and together they must unravel a twisting thread of secrets, lies, and betrayal, all while on the brink of a biological disaster.

Will they and their love survive, or will Luke and Kate become the terrorist's next mark?


Read an excerpt.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Praised by New York Times best-selling author Dee Henderson as "a name to look for in romantic suspense," Dani Pettrey has sold more than 400,000 copies of her novels to readers eagerly awaiting the next release. Dani combines the page-turning adrenaline of a thriller with the chemistry and happy-ever-after of a romance. Her novels stand out for their "wicked pace, snappy dialogue, and likable characters" (Publishers Weekly), "gripping storyline[s]," (RT Book Reviews), and "sizzling undercurrent of romance" (USA Today).

Her Alaskan Courage series and Chesapeake Valor series have received praise from readers and critics alike and spent multiple months topping the CBA bestseller lists. Dani has also been honored with multiple awards, including the Daphne du Maurier Award, two HOLT Medallions, a Christy Award finalist, two National Readers' Choice Awards, the Gail Wilson Award of Excellence, and Christian Retailing's Best Award.

From her early years eagerly reading Nancy Drew mysteries, to paging through Agatha Christie novels or watching on-the-edge-of-her-seat adventure movies, Dani has always enjoyed mystery and suspense. She considers herself blessed to be able to write the kind of stories she loves--full of plot twists and peril, love, and longing for hope and redemption. Her greatest joy as an author is sharing the stories God lays on her heart. She researches murder and mayhem from her home in Maryland, where she lives with her husband. Their two daughters, a son-in-law, and two adorable grandsons also reside in Maryland. For more information about her novels, visit danipettrey.com.


MY THOUGHTS

I have thoroughly enjoyed each of the previous Chesapeake Valour books, and Dani Pettrey brings the series to a satisfying close with another captivating story. While each book can be read as a standalone, it is much more gratifying to read them all as each story contains recurring characters while focusing on one individual within a group of friends who work in a variety of law enforcement jobs. As always, Pettrey fills the pages with adrenaline-laced action, heartpounding suspense, and romance that keeps the reader's heart thumping for a totally different reason! No need for caffeinated drinks as you read this high-octane novel! Dead Drift will keep you awake late into the night as you determine to read just one more chapter again and again until you reach the breathless conclusion. Run, don't walk, to pick up your copy of this gripping novel!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book free from 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 - Click the covers for my reviews of Books 1-3.




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Sunday, July 1, 2018

ACFW 2018 Carol Award Finalists

Here are the finalists for the 2018 Carol Awards. The winners will be awarded during the gala awards dinner in Nashville as part of ACFW’s annual conference.

Contemporary


Maybe It’s You by Candace Calvert, Tyndale House, editors Sarah Rische and Jan Stob

(Click the title for my review.)

The Long Highway Home by Elizabeth Musser, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editor LB Norton

A Fragile Hope by Cynthia Ruchti, Abingdon Press, editors Jamie Chavez and Ramona Richards

(Click the title for my review.)

Historical


Catching the Wind by Melanie Dobson, Tyndale House, editors Stephanie Broene and Sarah Rische

A Plain Leaving by Leslie Gould, Bethany House (Baker) Publishing, editors Dave Long and Jennifer Veilleux

Liar’s Winter by Cindy Sproles, Kregel Publications, editor Dawn Anderson

Historical Romance


A Note Yet Unsung by Tamera Alexander, Bethany House (Baker) Publishing, editor Karen Schurrer

(Click the title for my review.)

The Road to Paradise by Karen Barnett, Waterbrook/Multnomah (Random House), editor Shannon Marchese

Heart on the Line by Karen Witemeyer, Bethany House (Baker) Publishing, editors Jessica Barnes and Dave Long

(Click the title for my review.)

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller


Four Months in Cuba by Luana Ehrlich, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editors Pat Brown and Jodi Shumway

Ghost Heart by Lisa Harris and Lynne Gentry, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editor Ellen Tarver

Portrait of Vengeance by Carrie Stuart Parks, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Amanda Bostic and Erin Healy

Novella


Puzzle House by Lillian Duncan, Harbourlight Books (Pelican), editor Jamie West

An Awakened Heart by Jody Hedlund, Bethany House (Baker) Publishing, editor Dave Long

(How did I miss reviewing this? Loved this FREE prequel novella to Jody Hedlund's Orphan Train series!)


One Enchanted Noel from Enchanted: A Christmas Collection by Melissa Tagg, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editor Terri Simmons

(Another reviewing fail! But I was captivated by this swoon-worthy novella by one of my fave romance authors!)

Romance


A New Shade of Summer by Nicole Deese, Waterfall Press, editors Amy Hosford and Sheryl Zajechowski

Then There Was You by Kara Isaac, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editors Iola Goulton and Halee Matthews

A Matter of Trust by Susan May Warren, Revell - A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editors Andrea Doering and Kristin Kornoelje

Romantic Suspense


Justice Buried by Patricia Bradley, Revell - A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editors Lonnie Hull DuPont and Kristin Kornoelje

(Click the title for my review.)


Fatal Mistake by Susan Sleeman, Faith Words (Hachette), editor Christina Boys

The House on Foster Hill by Jaime Jo Wright, Bethany House (Baker) Publishing, editor Raela Schoenherr

Short Novel


Christmas at Carnton by Tamera Alexander, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editors Ami McConnell Abston and Becky Philpott

(Click the title for my review.)

A Sweetwater River Romance by Misty M. Beller, ACFW Qualified Independently Published, editor Robin Patchen

Claiming Her Cowboy by Tina Radcliffe, Love Inspired (Harlequin), editors Melissa Endlich and Giselle Regus

Speculative


Awakened by Morgan L. Busse, Enclave Publishing, editor Reagen Reed

Huntress by Julie Hall, Independently Published, editor Rachel Starr Thomson

King’s Blood by Jill Williamson, Bethany House (Baker) Publishing, editors Dave Long and Elisa Tally

Young Adult


For Love & Honor by Jody Hedlund, HarperCollins Christian Publishing, editor Sara Bierling

Playing by Heart by Carmela Martino, Vinspire Publishing, editor Dawn Carrington

Betrayal of the Band by Sarah Tipton, Watershed Books (Pelican Book Group), editor Jamie West

Debut


Freedom’s Ring by Heidi Chiavaroli, Tyndale House, editors Caleb Sjogren and Jan Stob

If We Make It Home by Christina Suzann Nelson, Kregel Publications, editor Dawn Anderson

Lady Jayne Disappears by Joanna Davidson Politano, Revell - A Division of Baker Publishing Group, editors Barbara Barnes and Vicki Crumpton

(Fascinating debut novel. I purchased it, inhaled it, but never reviewed it. I'll be looking for more from this talented author.)


Congratulations!


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