Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Gathering the Threads: A Novel (The Amish of Summer Grove) by Cindy Woodsmall

Book Description:  Finally back in the Old Order Amish world she loves,

Will Ariana’s new perspectives draw her family closer together—

or completely rip them apart?
After months away in the Englisch world, Ariana Brenneman is overjoyed to be in the Old Order Amish home where she was raised. Yet her excitement is mixed with an unexpected apprehension as she reconciles all she’s learned from her biological parents with the uncompromising teachings of her Plain community. Although her childhood friend, ex-Amish Quill Schlabach, hopes to help her navigate her new role amongst her people, Ariana’s Daed doesn’t understand why his sweet daughter is suddenly questioning his authority. What will happen if she sows seeds of unrest and rebellion in the entire family?  
Meanwhile, Skylar Nash has finally found her place among the large Brenneman family, but Ariana’s arrival threatens to unravel Skylar’s new identity—and her sobriety. Both Ariana and Skylar must discover the true cords that bind a family and community together and grasp tight the One who holds their authentic identities close to His heart. 

My Thoughts:  This is the third and final novel in the Summer Grove series.  AHH!  I hate when a great book or a wonderful series ends.  It's like the morning after Christmas.  A small grain of disappointment but, yet, a thrill of joy.
Gathering the Threads continues Araina's story.  I read Ties that Bind and Fraying at the Edge the first two books in this series.  And, yes, one needs to read the first two books so one can understand about Ariana and Quill.
Ariana has been away in the Englisch world and now she is back in the Old Order home.  It's a great time of mixed emotions for her.
Quill Sclabach is nice guy who helps Araina.  
Now remember Araina has been away from her Old Order family so when she questions her daed it doesn't go well.  The Old Order people see this has a rebellion.  Ariana should not asks questions.  We forget that English women have a lot of freedoms and we question, even direct our men and families. 
Then there's Skylar Nash.  Will Ariana be able to keep Skylar's past in     the past?
A great ending to a wonderful series!  

*This book was provided for review by Waterbrook/Multnomah*

The first two books in this series:

  • Series: The Amish of Summer Grove (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook (August 15, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601427034
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601427038

Dark Deception (Defenders of Justice, Book 2) by Nancy Mehl

Book Description:  Kate O'Brien's quiet life in small-town Shelter Cove, Arkansas is shaken when her past suddenly comes roaring back to life. Four years ago, she and her twin sister were attacked by an elusive serial killer. Only Kate survived, and she's been in witness protection ever since.

When new evidence arises to suggest the convicted man wasn't the murderer, she's subpoenaed to testify in the new trial. Afraid to go back into that world, Kate only agrees if Tony DeLuca, the deputy Marshal who protected her during the original trial, escorts her to St. Louis. 

My Thoughts:  I enjoy Nancy Mehl's stories.  So I was pleasantly surprised to receive Dark Deception the other day.  This is book 2 in the Defenders of Justice but don't worry each book is a stand alone read and the books do not reference the previous read.  

The story begins with a hair-raising scene.  Kate O'Brien is in trouble and has no one to help her.  So she calls the FBI and Tony DeLuca, a US Deputy Marshal, just happens to be in the office and answers her call.
Tony carefully guides Kate get out of the terrible situation.  And then he loses her call.
Not knowing what is taking place but feeling responsible Tony has to the place where Kate is suppose to be hiding.  
When he gets there Kate is gone.  But he tracks her and he knows if he can track her so can the "bad guy."
Kate is so afraid because four years earlier she and her twin sister were horribly attacked in their home.  Only Kate survived the vicious attack.
So with the attack in her history she is afraid the killer is on ht loose again.  She doesn't know what to do or whom to trust so her motto is Don't trust anyone.
She goes into hiding but tony is determined to help her because he knows she can't defend herself against this evil.
A heart pounding, emotional roller coaster! 

*This book was provided for review by Bethany House*

Book 1

  • Series: Defenders of Justice (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (June 6, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 076421778X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764217784

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

And oh!So!good!  Another great recipe from Pinterest:


  • 2-3 heads of lettuce (such as butter crunch), washed, dried, cut in large pieces
  • 2 cups of watermelon, cut in small chunks
  • 2 cups of strawberries, sliced
  • 2 cups of rotisserie chicken, chopped in small pieces
  • 1/2 cup red onion
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup pesto
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 2 Tbsp. lime juice


Cut the lettuce and place in a large bowl.
Cut the watermelon, strawberries, chicken, and basil. Lay on top of the greens.
Mix together the pesto, honey, lime juice.
Right before serving add the dressing; toss and serve.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Jane of Austin: A Novel of Sweet Tea and Sensibility by Hillary Manton Lodge

Book Description:  Just a few years after their father’s business scandal shatters their lives, Jane and Celia Woodward find themselves forced out of their San Francisco tea shop. The last thing Jane wants is to leave their beloved shop on Valencia Street, but when Celia insists on a move to Austin, Texas, the sisters pack up their kid sister Margot and Jane’s tea plants, determined to start over yet again.

But life in Austin isn’t all sweet tea and breakfast tacos. Their unusual living situation is challenging and unspoken words begin to fester between Jane and Celia. When Jane meets and falls for up-and-coming musician Sean Willis, the chasm grows deeper.

While Sean seems to charm everyone in his path, one person is immune – retired Marine Captain Callum Beckett. Callum never meant to leave the military, but the twin losses of his father and his left leg have returned him to the place he least expected—Texas. 

In this modern spin on the Austen classic, Sense and Sensibility, the Woodward sisters must contend with new ingredients in unfamiliar kitchens, a dash of heartbreak, and the fragile hope that maybe home isn't so far away.

My Thoughts:  I just love the title of this book, Jane of Austin: A Novel of Sweet Tea and Sensibility, sweet tea and sensibility....Oh.My.Lanta!  

I love Jane Austin books but I also love stories written by Hillary Manton Lodge and when I saw the title of this book I knew it would be a fun book.
Jane and her sister Celia Woodward live in Austin,Texas.  {Jane of Austin}  đŸ˜Š  Love the word play.  Anyway, if you live in Texas you understand that life isn't all about sweet tea and breakfast tacos.  Sweet tea and breakfast tacos just make life better and romantic.  True story 💗
Jane and Celia's father has a business scandal which basically ruins their lives.  Celia insists that they move to Austin.  So they pack up their younger sister, Margot, and what little they have and start a new in Austin.  
But with their living arrangements the sisters have words which cause some "hard" feelings and then Jane meets the charming Sean Willis.  Sean charms everyone he meets except for Captain Callum Beckett.  
Oh, my!  What a fun story!  A modern spin on Jane Austen's classic Sense and Sensibility.  

*This book was provided for review by Waterbrook/Multnomah*

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook (June 13, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601429347
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601429346

Monday, June 19, 2017

COTT {Clash of the Titles}

Featuring Contemporary Novel "After"

After, an inspirational novel by contemporary Christian fiction author, Joy Ohagwu, is poised to spotlight the strength in transformation, courage in love, and hope in times of despair.


About the book:

One step will transform her life.

Sixty thousand people watched as Candace Rodriguez literally fell off the stage while performing the national anthem, wrecking more than her self-esteem. Is her music career over? Now, weighing 350 pounds and jilted by her fiancé after the shame of her public fall, can she find another chance at true love? Will her new Christian faith anchor her future hopes?
Former highbrow stock trader, "JB" Patrickson has had enough of life making mockery of his best laid-out future plans. His father insisted he'd never make it more than selling " chickn" stock in Kentucky. Proving him wrong, JB succeeded at the NY Stock Exchange, becoming one of the best US traders...until the market crashed in 2008. Seven years later and mired in debt, he can't shake the urge that God is leading him down a different path. The path of accepting his grandmother's request to come help manage her farm, couple hundred miles away, despite his little to nothing knowledge about farming. Has he fallen low enough to toil with his hands to eke out a single meal? What future could God plan for him on a farm?

Twenty years after returning to the US from a fulfilling medical mission in Asia, Dr. and Dr. Mrs. Cantwell gratefully send off two sons to college, purchase a flourishing twenty-acre farm, and prepare to settle into their empty nest stage. But what will they do if God leads one more life into their path, one needing stitches of the soul not of the body? Can they answer His call to service, or will overlooked pain from the past threaten the fragile peace they'd so desperately coaxed into existence to survive together?

What our voters had to say:
--I love the book, AFTER! The cover is catchy, and the contents, inspiring!
--Congratulations, Joy! A lovely book inside and out.~~~Deirdre Lockhart
--I personally saw the love poured into writing "After" and I hope it blesses everyone who reads it! It's Awesome!!!
--Thumbs up, Joy!
Q: Joy, what was writing After like?
A: Thank you for asking. First, I’d like to appreciate everyone that voted for After during the COTT contest. Thank you all very much. I started writing After during NaNoWriMo 2013. Then earlier in summer 2015, after I wrote Candace in as a character for Blossom and Josh's story(which is now After 2), her personality and voice got so strong that she took over the story! It was amazing. I trusted my gut, went with the flow, and ended up publishing Candace's and JB's story as the first in the AFTER series. The AFTER series is about transformation and positively changing one’s lifestyle through fitness. But more importantly, After shows us that we should allow God to assist us in every area of our lives, especially those places where everyone expects us to fail. You can read the story here. Although I enjoyed writing about Candace and JB, I'm glad that I finally completed Blossom and Josh's story as well and it released as After 2 in November 2015. 

Q: Can you share with us about your next book?
A: Sure. I'd love to. I'm presently writing Uncommon Ground, the first book in a romantic suspense series, and I’ll share what the story is about. Stella is a widow who's juggling a career and raising an older teen that doesn't believe in God. A disaster occurs that separates them and turns their world upside down. Stella's concerns multiply in the ensuing chaos after she meets Michael, a Christian man with a mysterious past and she wonders how many more unseen twists God trusts her to handle. Like Psalm 68 verse 5 says, God is a defender of the widows. Uncommon Ground is a story where we can identify with each of the characters’ struggles, and if we let it, it can potentially kick our faith higher into greater dimensions. After reading Uncommon Ground, we get to appreciate some of the things we usually take for granted as Christians. Uncommon Ground becomes available for preorder Jan 1, 2016, and I pray everyone gets their copy. 

Thank you very much for having me here. God bless you!

About Bestselling Author Joy Ohagwu:
Joy Ohagwu is the bestselling author of The New Rulebook suspense series. Her novels are romantic suspense and inspirational stories geared to engage, inspire and entertain readers. She earned a Masters' Degree in International Affairs from American University, Washington DC; and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the University of Ibadan, Ibadan. Professionally, she’s been honored with multiple awards for pioneer academic research, student leadership and overall excellence. Joy is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers(ACFW) organization. She pens stories during evenings, weekends, and whenever the food takes too long to cook. Despite the many hurdles she has faced, she counts God as being faithful in her life. Joy lives in the beautiful State of Maryland.

You can connect with Joy on her website, and follow her Author page.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Fun Friday . . .

The BEST way to read is to read a book that interests you!  đŸ˜

Thursday, June 15, 2017

The Sweet Smell Of Magnolias And Memories By Celeste Fletcher McHale

Book Description:  Jacey and Colin shared the three most intense days of their lives together, waiting for help as Mississippi floodwaters surrounded them. Jacey knew Colin was the love of her life—until her rescue boat went under water, along with Colin’s last name and pieces of Jacey’s memory.  The last thing she remembered was being submerged in water. Again.  As Jacey walks down the aisle as the maid of honor in her friend’s wedding a year later, the last person she expects to see is Colin. The biggest surprise, though, is that the man of her dreams is not wearing jeans and flip-flops as he did when he held her through those long nights of the flood. He’s the preacher.  As Jacey’s memories come flooding back, it’s almost more than she can take. The fate of the young family trapped with them haunts her. The unwavering honesty—and support—of her best friend Georgia forces her to take a fresh look at herself. She’s spent her life afraid of love. But this flood is opening Jacey’s heart in the most unexpected ways.

My Thoughts:  Celeste Fletcher McHale is a brand new author for me.  
This was a cute.sort.of book.
The beginning is interesting when Jacey and Colin are stranded on a roof top during a flood.  
They become separated...he looks but can't find her.  And then, lo and behold, she is the maid of honor at a friend's wedding and as she looks up the aisle there he stands!  Colin is the preacher!  What a surprise!  and bit of shock for Jacey.
I was really enjoying this story and avidly reading and then I came to the part where Jacey gets flustered because she'll have to give up short skirts and margaritas. This was a bit of a disappointment and maybe I misread about Jacey...I thought she was a christian.  Yeah, I know margaritas and short skirts are okay for some christians but I like to think that most christians have some moral standard for not drinking alcohol and trying to look like the world.  
So this was an okay read for me.

*This book was provided for review by the Fiction Guild*

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (May 23, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 071803984X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718039844

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

{Fiction Guild Blog Tour} A Stranger at Fellsworth (Treasures of Surrey #3) by Sarah E. Ladd

Book Description:  In the fallout of her deceased father’s financial ruin, Annabelle’s prospects are looking bleak. Her fiancĂ© has called off their betrothal, and now she remains at the mercy of her controlling and often cruel brother. Annabelle soon faces the fact that her only hope for a better life is to do the unthinkable and run away to Fellsworth, where her estranged uncle serves as the school’s superintendent. Upon arrival, Annabelle learns that she must shed her life of high society and work for her wages for the first time in her life.
Owen Locke is unswerving in his commitments. As a widower and father, he is fiercely protective of his only daughter. As an industrious gamekeeper, he is intent on keeping poachers at bay even though his ambition has always been to purchase land he can call his own. When a chance encounter introduces him to Annabelle Thorley, his steady life is shaken. For the first time since his wife’s death, Owen begins to consider a second chance at love.
As Owen and Annabelle grow closer, ominous forces threaten the peace they thought they’d found. Poachers, mysterious strangers, and murderers converge at Fellsworth, forcing Annabelle and Owen to a test of fortitude and bravery to stop the shadow of the past from ruining their hopes for the future.

My Thoughts:  I just love when I've read two books by an author and am surprised when I receive the third book in the mail.  

Having read The Curiosity Keeper and Dawn at Emberwilde and now A Stranger at Fellsworth all in the Treasures of Surrey "series."  In my opinion this is a stand alone read as are the other two books.  

Annabelle seems to be in quite a pickle.  After her father dies and there is no money left, her fiancĂ©  calls of their betrothal and now her brother wants to control her every move.  So what is a girl to do?  Why runaway to a better place, of course.

So Annabelle does the unthinkable and runs away to the school where her uncle whom she does not know is the school superintendent.  What a wake up call.  Annabelle learns that she is no longer a lady of leisure but must actually work for a living.

Annabelle meets Owen and his daughter but as their relationship seems to grow there seems to be mysterious strangers and all kinds of trouble.  Will these tests and trials pull the couple apart or will they learn to help each other.

Another great historical read with romance and adventure by Sarah E. Ladd!

*This book was provided for review by The Fiction Guild*

  • Series: A Treasures of Surrey Novel
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (May 16, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0718011856
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718011857

{The Fiction Guild Blog Tour} The Beloved Hope Chest (An Amish Heirloom Novel) by Amy Clipston

Book Description:  When Mattie packed her hope chest, she put away the heartache of her past. But as her daughters begin to unpack it, she discovers a healing more powerful than she ever hoped for.

Mattie Fisher’s three daughters know that she’s been keeping a secret from them. With each item pulled from the beloved family hope chest, they’ve discovered a new clue about their mother’s past.
But there’s a reason Mattie has been keeping her history hidden, and she’s not sure she’s ready to reopen old wounds. Will dredging up the past change the way her children view her? Or her marriage to their father? And can she handle the pain of revisiting the memories that preceded the last few happy decades?
Mattie’s story is one of grief and learning to love again. But like the best things preserved in a hope chest, it's a story of love and redemption born out of heartache—and it's past time to share it.

My Thoughts:  Amy Clipston is a favorite author of mine.  I love the way she brings a story to life.
the Beloved Hope Chest is the story of how a mom used to be a young girl with hopes and dreams.  When Mattie Fisher's three daughters want to know the history of their parents romance and wedding the "hidden" things of Mattie's past come to light.
It's not a bad past, it's just a past that Mattie had to let go of...dreams of a lost love.
But as the story continues Mattie begins to see that her life, as it is now, is full now and that she has three beautiful daughters and a loving husband.
Mattie's story is a story of lessons learned but also of blessings given.  We all have things that we wish might "would have" been or what we think might have been but God directs our lives (if we let Him) to have fulfillment and joy.
Another fantastic Amish read by Amy Clipston.

*This book was provided for review by the Fiction Guild*

  • Series: An Amish Heirloom Novel
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan (May 9, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310341973
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310341970

Just Look Up by Courtney Walsh

Book Description:  After tirelessly climbing the ranks of her Chicago-based interior design firm, Lane Kelley is about to land her dream promotion when devastating news about her brother draws her back home―a quaint tourist town full of memories she’d just as soon forget. With her cell phone and laptop always within reach, Lane aims to check on her brother while staying focused on work―something her eclectic family doesn’t understand.

Ryan Brooks never expected to settle down in Harbor Pointe, Michigan, but after his final tour of duty, it was the only place that felt like home. Now knee-deep in a renovation project that could boost tourism for the struggling town, he is thrilled to see Lane, the girl he secretly once loved, even if the circumstances of her homecoming aren’t ideal.

Their reunion gets off to a rocky start, however, when Ryan can’t find a trace of the girl he once knew in the woman she is today. As he slowly chips away at the walls Lane has built, secrets from his past collide with a terrible truth even he is reluctant to believe. Facing a crossroads that could define his future with Lane and jeopardize his relationship with the surrogate family he’s found in the Kelleys, Ryan hopes Lane can see that maybe what really matters has been right in front of her all along―if only she’d just look up.

My Thoughts:  It's been quite awhile since I've read a novel by Courtney Walsh.  But the cover looked interesting and the back of the book description pulled me into this story.

Lane Kelley is one busy and tired young woman.  So when she receives devastating news from her brother.  She knows that she must go home, again.  
Memories . . . not all good, come rushing back making Lane curious if she can go back home again.
But home again she goes.
And she meets up with Ryan Brooks who is home again, too, after a tour duty.  
Ryan has secretly loved Lane but this homecoming isn't exactly how he envisioned it.  So with a rocky start to their meeting, Ryan begins to see that Lane isn't the girl she used to be.  
But because Ryan is no quitter he continues to have a friendship with Lane.
This is quite a touching story with good romance and family ties all bound up in one great story.

*This book was provided for review by Tyndale*

Another novel by Courtney Walsh:

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (July 4, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1496421485
  • ISBN-13: 978-1496421487

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

 Soapapilla Cheesecake is divine!

Sopapilla Cheesecake
2 cans Pillsbury Crescent rolls
2-8oz Cream Cheese (room temperature)
1 1/2 cups Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 stick butter (1/2 cup real butter not margarine)
Spray a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray. Unroll and press 1 can crescent rolls into the bottom of your baking dish press the seams together. In a separate bowl blend the cream cheese, 1 cup sugar and 1 tsp vanilla  spread over top of dough. Unroll the second can of crescent rolls and place on top of the cream cheese mixture pressing seams together again. Melt butter and pour over top layer of crescents. Mix the reaming 1/2 cup of sugar & cinnamon together. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture generously over the top.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes until bubbly and bottom crust is slightly brown. So easy and delicious! Cool, slice and enjoy!

Monday, June 12, 2017

The Road to Paradise: A Vintage National Parks Novel by Karen Barnett

Book Description:  An ideal sanctuary and a dream come true–that’s what Margaret Lane feels as she takes in God’s gorgeous handiwork in Mount Rainer National Park. It’s 1927 and the National Park Service is in its youth when Margie, an avid naturalist, lands a coveted position alongside the park rangers living and working in the unrivaled splendor of Mount Rainier’s long shadow. 

But Chief Ranger Ford Brayden is still haunted by his father’s death on the mountain, and the ranger takes his work managing the park and its crowd of visitors seriously. The job of watching over an idealistic senator’s daughter with few practical survival skills seems a waste of resources.
When Margie’s former fiancĂ© sets his mind on developing the Paradise Inn and its surroundings into a tourist playground, the plans might put more than the park’s pristine beauty in danger. What will Margie and Ford sacrifice to preserve the splendor and simplicity of the wilderness they both love?

My Thoughts:  The year is 1927, the president is Theodore Roosevelt and this is such a unique read!
President Roosevelt's vision for protected lands so that the people of America could enjoy God's creation.  And this story takes place in Most Rainier National Park.
When Chief Ranger Ford Brayden and the senator's idealistic daughter, Margie, meet it isn't a love at first sight kind.of.meeting.  In fact, Ranger Brayden feels that Margie is a spoiled socialite.
Then Margie's former fiancĂ© comes to Most Rainier with a plan to build a Paradise Inn and make a tourist playground.  This plan is most unacceptable to the park and to Ranger Brayden.
I loved reading about the past and Ms. Barnett wrote such a unique and informative novel.  
But the way Margie matured and grew like a young sapling was interesting too.  Since poor Margie really had no understanding of nature but as she learned more about the park and the reason so many people want to preserve the land, was so well written. Made me want to take a trip to one of our national parks, right now!
Don't miss this grand story!

*This book was provided for review by Waterbrook/Multnomah*

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook (June 6, 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0735289549
  • ISBN-13: 978-0735289543

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

Love this fruit salad!  

      For years I never knew what to make a for a group or large family...when sending or making food!  This wonderful fruit salad is so good and so easy for a crowd!

Serving Size: 20 


1 fresh ripe pineapple 

1 fresh ripe cantaloup 

4 fresh ripe mangoes 

2 pounds of fresh strawberries 

4 cups of seedless green grapes 

1 1/2 cups of fresh blueberries 

3 to 5 cups powdered sugar. 

Lime juice all over!  

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Annie's Stories (Ellis Island) by Cindy Thomson

Book Description:  The year is 1901, the literary sensation The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is taking New York City by storm, and everyone wonders where the next great book will come from. But to Annie Gallagher, stories are more than entertainment—they’re a sweet reminder of her storyteller father. After his death, Annie fled Ireland for the land of dreams, finding work at Hawkins House.

But when a fellow boarder with something to hide is accused of misconduct and authorities threaten to shut down the boardinghouse, Annie fears she may lose her new friends, her housekeeping job . . . and her means of funding her dream: a memorial library to honor her father. Furthermore, the friendly postman shows a little too much interest in Annie—and in her father’s unpublished stories. In fact, he suspects these tales may hold a grand secret.

Though the postman’s intentions seem pure, Annie wants to share her father’s stories on her own terms. Determined to prove herself, Annie must forge her own path to aid her friend and create the future she’s always envisioned . . . where dreams really do come true.

My Thoughts:  I enjoy stories written by Cindy Thomson.  I loved Grace's Pictures.  And Annie's Stories is in somewhat.of.the.same. venue but yet, it's its own story.  
Annie must find work.  She finds a rather good job in the housekeeping area at a boarding house, Hawkins House.  But when one of the tenants is accused of wrong doing and the authorities threaten to shut the House down Annie knows she may have to find another job.  Not an easy task.  Then there's the "over friendly" postman who show way to much interest in Annie.  Annie knows her father's unpublished stories may hold a secret...does the postman  know?  Are some secrets worth holding onto? And is her father's secret worth enough to hold onto.  Annie only knows this is her way to make a tribute to her father.                                         
Annie only knows that she must help her friend who is accused of wrongdoing. Stories that have a moral and a christian theme that show integrity and kindness are few and far between...that's why this is such                      a great read! Loved this great story!  Mystery and history . . . what a way to spend a summer afternoon reading about lives of past ages!  A great read for mystery and history fans!
*(This review is based upon a copy of this book which was provided free of charge from Tyndale House Publishers. These opinions are my own; I was not required to write a positive review, nor was I compensated for this review.)*

  • Series: Ellis Island                                        
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (July 1, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1414368453
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414368450

Monday, June 5, 2017

COTT {Clash of the Titles}

The Reason I Wrote Sofi’s Bridge

Guest post By Christine Lindsay 

The aspiration behind all my novels is to share journey the Lord took me on through my own canyons and valleys of loss to eventual emotional healing in Him. I share different aspects of that journey in my books to encourage others in their own struggles. 

And there you are: The valleys and canyons of Washington State are another set of the metaphors in Sofi’s Bridge.

Here is an excerpt from a favorite character of mine, Kiosho, a delightful elderly Japanese man who in his youth mined for gold with Sofi’s grandfather shortly after they both immigrated to the US in the late 1800’s.

Sofi watched her sister drift from pillar to pillar on the wraparound porch, a look of perplexity stamped on her face. 

Kiosho dried his hands on a tea cloth while Sofi pushed out a sigh. “I don’t know anymore, Kiosho. So little improvement in Trina.”

Kiosho took her elbow and shook it. “Remember, Sofi, what I used to tell you. The love of God, all around. Like these mountains that circle this valley. First, Trina and you must go through different canyons of sadness, but He will bring you out to open spaces.”
I live in a valley exactly like the fictional valley in the Cascade Mountains that Sofi and Neil escape to with her sister. Except, my real valley is just across the border in Canada, but still in the same beautiful range of mountains and glaciers. One day as I was going through a personal heartache, our pastor preached on the love of God, and used the metaphor of the mountains that encircle our real-life town nestled in the Fraser Valley. I know these mountains. I know this valley. I know each change on the faces of my mountains as seasons come and go.

I also know how God can use our greatest heartaches to bring forth our greatest joys. If we let Him.

I leave you with this last excerpt, when Neil, on a high alpine meadow starts to feel hope for his set of trying circumstances. He’s on the journey to God and healing, and doesn’t quite recognize it yet, but only feels the comfort and love coming from his Creator in the majesty around him.

At the summit Kiosho reined the Clydesdales in and settled them under a shady tree. The wind, carrying a clean pine fragrance, blew unimpeded as though they’d reached the top of the world. Trina jumped from the wagon to run along a pathway strewn on either side with blue and purple lupine, pink phlox, yellow arnica, and red Indian paintbrush. Only a few feet to Trina’s right, the path dropped to plunge into a flower-dotted meadow. Grasses swayed in the breeze. 

Neil stayed behind with Sofi, sweeping his gaze three hundred and sixty degrees. 

Above the tree line, gray peaks scraped the sky, some still capped with snow. In the distance, pale blue and turquoise ice from glaciers filled crevices between serrated granite heights. 

Quiet awe filled his face. 

As Sofi watched him, she could only hope that up here for a while he could let go of whatever pain he was hiding from the world, and from her.

About Christine: Irish born Christine Lindsay is the author of multi-award-winning Christian fiction and non-fiction. Readers describe her writing as gritty yet tender, realistic yet larger than life, with historical detail that collides into the heart of psychological and relationship drama.

Christine's fictional novels have garnered the ACFW Genesis Award, The Grace Award, Canada’s The Word Guild Award, and was a finalist twice for Readers’ Favorite as well as 2nd place in RWA’s Faith Hope and Love contest. 

This author’s non-fiction memoir Finding Sarah Finding Me is the true-life story that started this award-winning career in Christian fiction and non-fiction. This book is a must for anyone whose life has been touched by adoption. Christine is currently writing a new fictional series set on the majestic coast of Ireland and loaded with her use of setting as a character that will sweep the reader away. Subscribe to her newsletter on her website the Book: Seattle Debutante Sofi Andersson will do everything in her power to protect her sister who is suffering from shock over their father's death. Charles, the family busy-body, threatens to lock Trina in a sanatorium—a whitewashed term for an insane asylum—so Sofi will rescue her little sister, even if it means running away to the Cascade Mountains with only the new gardener Neil Macpherson to protect them. But in a cabin high in the Cascades, Sofi begins to recognize that the handsome immigrant from Ireland harbors secrets of his own. Can she trust this man whose gentle manner brings such peace to her traumatized sister and such tumult to her own emotions? And can Nei, the gardener continue to hide from Sofi that he is really Dr. Neil Galloway, a man wanted for murder by the British police? Only an act of faith and love will bridge the distance that separates lies from truth and safety.

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