Sunday, December 27, 2020

Tell Her No Lies by Kelly Irvin


Book Description:  Nina Fischer carries a camera wherever she goes—so she can view life through a filter. Safely. After her mother abandoned her to the streets, Nina has kept people at a distance, including her uncle, who adopted Nina and her sister. Wealthy and proud, he is a good man, a fair judge, and someone many in San Antonio admire. 
But when he is murdered, and the detective assigned to the case accuses Nina of the crime, she knows she must act. She’s determined to use her journalism background to find the real killer. The two men in her life want to help, but can she trust them?  She’s known Rick since they were children, but now he’s an attorney whose political aspirations seem more important than Nina’s tragic loss. And then there’s Aaron, a news videographer; using their friendship could break the biggest story of his career.

My Thoughts:  Kelly Irvin is a new to me author.  But she's one I'll be keeping on my to go list.
Tell Her No Lies is filled with a lot of action, suspense!, and a smidgen of romance.  
I love, love suspense and this book kept me on the edge of my seat.  literally!
Nina is a strong young woman who has been dealt a rather bad hand in the life department.  But Nina is one to let it keep her down.  However, she does have an unusual way of dealing with her life...she keeps a camera hanging around her neck and looks a life through a filter.  
When her uncle is killed and she is accused of the murder she is more than determined to find the killer.
Using her journalism skills and her camera Nina is on the move to find the bad man but then Rick, whom she's known since childhood wants to help her and Aaron, the news videographer, wants to help her too.  But whom can she trust?  It seems the men in her life haven't always been a help.
Quite a story with a somewhat surprising ending!  Loved it!

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0785223118
  • ISBN-13: 978-0785223115

Thursday, December 24, 2020



The Thief of Blackfriar's Lane by Michelle Griep

Book Description:  Constable Jackson Forge intends to make the world safer, or at least the streets of Victorian London. But that’s Kit Turner’s domain, a swindler who runs a crew that acquires money the old-fashioned way—conning the rich to give to the poor. When a local cab driver goes missing, Jackson is tasked with finding the man, and the only way to do that is by enlisting Kit’s help. If Jackson doesn’t find the cabby, he’ll be fired. If Kit doesn’t help Jackson, he’ll arrest her for thievery. Yet neither of them realize those are the least of their problems.

My Thoughts:  Michelle Griep is one of my favorite authors.  I love the way she pens a story especially a story of intrigue.
It's interesting that a thief, Kit Turner, is called up on to help in a police investigation when a local cab driver goes missing.  And it's a must for Constable Jackson to find the missing cab driver.  His job literally depends on it.  
But as life would have it only a thief seems to know where people go missing.  And Kit not only feels obligated to help the constable because he would get her on thievery charges but there's just something in her that wants to find a missing person.  I think there's a bit of honesty in us all.
One can't help but like the con artist Kit Turner.  Not only is she crafty but she is beautiful.  She takes what life hands her, literally!
But as Kit and the constable set out to find the missing cab driver they end up with more on their plate they they ever thought they would find.
Mystery, suspense and a bit of humor make this a grand read!

*This book was provided for review by Barbour Publishers*

{Blog Tour} Dead Broke by Vannetta Chapman

 Book Description:  Why would someone kill Nathan King?The peace of a perfect November afternoon is shattered when Agatha hears the frantic bleating of goats across the river from her B&B. Agatha kayaks over with retired detective Tony and two guests--Bishop Henry and his wife Emma. They find the goats huddled together in a terrified group and Nathan lying face up beneath the Live Oak trees, lifeless eyes staring at the Texas sky. Then one of Agatha’s guests goes missing. She delves into Joey’s past and learns he was Dead Broke, so what was he doing vacationing at her B&B? And why was he pretending to be Amish when in fact his permanent address was Dallas, Texas? Most importantly, did Joey have anything to do with Nathan’s death? Agatha and Tony are at a dead end before the investigation has properly begun, but this time they receive help from unexpected places. Bishop Henry has a gift, and he’s no longer afraid to use it, even if doing so may put them all in danger as they work together to catch a killer.

My Thoughts:  As I began reading Dead Broke by Vannetta Chapman I was pleasantly surprised to read that Bishop Henry and his new wife, Emma, are at Agatha's B & B.  It's like meeting friends one hasn't seen in awhile.  
Dead Broke is the second book in Agatha's B & B but it is a stand alone just like book one.  
When Bishop Henry and Emma find the nahhhing huddled goats by a lifeless Nathan a mystery is begun.
It seems that one of the B & B guests also goes missing and guess what?? Nathan was Dead Broke!  So why in Texas Thunder was he vacationing at the B & B?!  And to top it off he lived in Dallas, TX so why was he pretending to be Amish?
I love how in this mystery Bishop Henry is no longer afraid to use his God given gift.  {If you haven't read Vannetta Chapman's The Amish Bishop Series you really good!}.  
I loved this fantastic cozy mystery!

*This book was provided for review by the author 
and I was not required to post a positive review*

Monday, December 21, 2020

The Teacher's Bride (An Amish Brides of Birch Creek Novel) by Kathleen Fuller


Book Description:  Christian Ropp moves to Birch Creek to accept a teaching position in the rapidly growing Amish community. He’s determined to put the rambunctious school in order as well as check another task off his list: finding a wife. Of course, that would be much easier if women were like textbooks, straightforward and logical.
When an accident puts Christian out of commission, a new community member named Ruby Glick takes over his classroom. But Ruby’s exuberant teaching style clashes with Christian's careful methods and he worries his students will never be the same.

My Thoughts:  I was so excited to see that Kathleen Fuller has a new novel out.  She's a master story teller in my book!  😊
Christian Ropp is like a lot of teachers he not only wants to help the students but he won't allow chaos to rule the classroom either.  Well, when an accident causes Christian to be out of school for awhile Ruby Glick who is new to the community substitutes for Christian.  
Ruby's teaching techniques are not quite like Christian's procedures.  Ruby is rambunctious and happy to put it lightly.  Ruby doesn't seem to have a serious thought or a constructive idea.  However, the kids do love her and do seem to be learning.
Poor Christian he doesn't know what to think!  Will he ever have control over his class again.
Such a fun and humorous read!  Lots of laugh out loud moments and trying to guess what will happen next.
Sometimes we learn to take ourselves less seriously and have faith for the moment.
Loved, loved this read!

  • Series: An Amish Brides of Birch Creek Novel (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310355079
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310355076

Sunday, December 20, 2020

365 Devotions to Love God and Love Others Well by Zondervan


Book Description:  Everyone wants to love and be loved, but we lack the time and the intentionality to forge lasting relationships. We go about our days feeling battered and broken, lonely and solitary, despite the fact that we've been relentlessly adored by our Creator. This devotional gently shares with us that God already calls us beloved, and He desires that we love others just as He loves us.

My Thoughts:  I love to get a new devotional for the beginning of a new year.  So, this year I picked this devotional.
There is {literally}  a devotional page for each day of the year.
Each devotional is well thought out with a nice subtitle in the right hand corner, the month and day in the left hand corner, the scripture for the day is at the top middle and then the devotional.
I like the way that the devotional is written in story form.  It's not long but long enough to get the thought across.  And then there is a prayer at the bottom.
It's a nice way to begin a day.  
This can add to one's daily Bible reading or it is a nice gift for someone who needs an uplifting thought.
And this beautiful hard back book is small but not tiny so it fits into a bag to take along.

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310085470
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310085478
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1 x 7.4 inches

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Fabulous Friday

 This picture represents so much of 2020 for me.
Rowing, rowing against a strong current.  Feeling 
like I was making some headway and then BOOM!
something disastrous hits out of the blue!
We lost my sweet mother-in-law to cancer, then COVID-19
hit us all with stay at home orders which made the whole world 
change. A terrible sinus infection hit me on June 2nd.  I had never had a sinus infection before so I kept thinking it would go away.  It just got worse. I had the most terrible headaches, ever! 
Until I ended up in ER which led me to the path of the ENT.
Then, I kid you not, my left ankle ended up with arthritis.  It hurt so badly.
My wonderful husband ended up with colon issues but not because of my left ankle.  😀 My husband's brother-in-law passed away unexpectedly.  A week later the brother-in-law's dad passed away.  One month later to the day my husband's sweet aunt with whom we were quite close passed away. And then we got notice that two friends passed away due to COVID related issues.
My ear still keeps getting "clogged"  I'm trying, ever so , hard to pray and stay positive since I've been to four doctors and they can't fix it.
Here's the thing!  Through all of the disasters God never left our side.
Somehow we have paid for the medical bills.  Somehow I made it through all the vertigo.  Somehow my ankle is healing up.  Somehow my husband's colon issues abated. Somehow my sweet sister called and sent me amazing natural pills that worked.
Through it all God kept us above the current.
I will probably never forget the year 2020.  And, maybe, I shouldn't. 
It will be the building block, so to speak, that reminds me
BUT without God I can do nothing.
Godspeed for 2021!

Monday, December 14, 2020

A Royal Christmas Wedding by Rachel Hauck


My Thoughts: I get so excited this time of the years as the Christmas books begin to make an appearance.  Christmas is such a busy time that I love reading all about the sweetness of the Christmas spirit before it arrives.
Royal Christmas Wedding is the fourth book in the Royal Wedding series and somehow I managed to miss all of the books but this one. {sigh}
But I went ahead and read this book as a stand alone read and I was pleasantly surprised that I didn't feel that I missed I'm sure that there is a lot of "background" that I should know. So, it is probably best to read all the books in order.
Avery Truitt and Prince Colin of Brighton Kingdom met in college but he pushed her away five years ago and now she has to go back to Brighton for the Cathedral City's Christmas season. 
It's quite different for Avery since her father passed away and now her sister is of the reasons Avery is back in the city.
Avery realizes that it will be almost impossible to not see Colin and her heart aches for what might have been.
Colin, too, misses Avery.  But he has choices to make and love isn't always easy.
An enchanting holiday love story.  

  • Series: Royal Wedding Series
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310344530
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310344537

Sunday, December 13, 2020

The Blue Cloak (True Colors) by Shannon McNear


Book Description:  Based on real events beginning in 1797 — Rachel Taylor lives a rather mundane existence at the way station her family runs along the Wilderness Road in Tennessee. She attends her friend’s wedding only to watch it dissolve in horror has the groom, Wiley Harpe, and his cousin become murderers on the run, who drag their families along. Declaring a “war on all humanity,” the Harpes won’t be stopped, and Ben Langford is on their trail to see if his own cousin was one of their latest victims. How many will die before peace can return to the frontier?

My Thoughts:  When you read a story that makes you completely unaware of anything that is going on around you...that, my friend, is quite a story!  The Blue Cloak is a page turner!
From a wedding to war!  Oh, how one never knows what a day will bring.
Poor Rachel Taylor she is just attending a wedding and then before the cake is served there's an all out war on humanity.  Actually a dangerous serial killer who wants to take a wife.  Literally...take a wife.
Shannon McNear takes us on a dangerous and suspenseful journey as Ben Langford goes on the hunt for Wiley Harpe and his cohorts.  
This story had me at page one and didn't let go until the very end.  
This is not a story for the faint of heart.  There is a descriptive scene that includes a lot blood and gore.  True crime with true colors.
The twists and turns has the reader tied in knots but what an ending!

"I received a complimentary copy of this book 
from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review."

Ginger Stir Fry from Wanda Brunsutetter's newest cookbook

We love this stir fry!  We've had three nights in a row.
A great way to get your veggies in and O.SO.GOOD!


 Everything is bigger in TX.  
This HUGE star is made of Cowboy hats and is hanging at the Fort Worth Convention Center.

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Oh, yeah!


Amish Cooking Class - The Blessing by Wanda E. Brustetter


Book Description:  Despite stressful changes occurring in their lives, Lyle and Heidi once again open their Ohio home up to those seeking to learn about Amish cooking. This time a teenager helping her divorced dad cook for the family, a caterer needing new recipes, a food critic, a hunter looking to impress his buddies, a wife given the class as an unwanted gift, and a mailman lured in by the aroma of good cooking gather around Heidi’s table.
During each class, Heidi teaches culinary skills, but it is her words of wisdom that have a profound effect on her students—though, this time Heidi’s own hurting heart will need some healing nourishment.

My Thoughts:  Wanda Brustetter is one of my favorite authors.  And the Amish Cooking Class books are so much fun to read.
This book, The Blessing, is the second book in the Amish Cooking Class.  The Seekers is the first book but I don't think you need to read one to understand the other.
As it turns out Lyle and Heidi once again decide to have cooking classes in their home.  Cooking classes seem to quite popular with the Englischers, do we English not cook?  Anyway, six people sign up:  a teen who wants to help her divorced dad, a caterer, a food critic, a hunter, a wife who didn't want this cooking class as a gift, and a mailman.
The funniest one of the group to me is the mailman.  He signed up for the class simply because of the aromas coming from Heidi's kitchen.  😊
Heidi teaches the classes but as she teaches she also incorporated words of wisdom.  These words of widest help nourish hungry souls and hearts just as her food helps nourish the body.
And the blessing!  O the blessing!  I won't tell you, you must read it for yourself.
I loved this book!  And I, too, wanted to be apart of Heidi's cooking class!

*This book was provided for review by Barbour*

  • Series: Amish Cooking Class (Book 2)
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Shiloh Run Press 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1624167454
  • ISBN-13: 978-1624167454

Monday, December 7, 2020

Peace on Earth {A Christmas Collection} by Mary Engelbreit


Book Description:  I surely wish with all my heart, This day of Jesus' birth, That peace and love and happiness Soon cover all the earth. Mary Engelbreit rings in the holiday with a Christmas collection that includes many of her favorite carols, the story of Jesus' birth, and beloved poems that touch the heart and celebrate the miracle of the season.

My Thoughts:  I absolutely Mary Engelbreit's artistry!  So, I was excited to receive this beautiful, hardback book where every page is filled with  Mary Engelbreit's beautiful art! 
The book is full of Christmas poems, Christmas carols and the Christmas story from the book of Luke.  It is suppose to be for kids ages 4-8 but it's SO sweet and unique that this "big" kid loves it, too!  This is an all things beautiful about Christmas book!
It's a keepsake book that should be saved, read at Christmastime and handed down to the next generation.  It's a book that many adults would like to read and look at too!  
The art work is fantastic and ever so colorful!  A wonderful addition to any Christmas tradition.  
I love this book!  It would also make a great be opened on Christmas Eve.

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Zonderkidz 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310743400
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310743408

Sunday, December 6, 2020

A Mother's Homecoming (Love Inspired) by Lisa Carter


Book Description:  Charmed by the two-year-old twins in her toddler tumbling class, Maggie Arledge is shocked to learn they’re the children she gave up for adoption. And when Bridger Hollingsworth—the uncle caring for the boys—needs an emergency nanny, she fits the bill. But with sparks flying between her and Bridger, can she let herself get attached…and risk exposing secrets from her past?

My Thoughts:  When one of my most favorite authors has a new book I grab it!  And this one is a win-win read because not only is it by a favorite author, Lisa Carter, but it's also a Love Inspired book.
I enjoy inspirational romances, especially when I want a short story and reading away the stresses of the day are made better by reading a wonderful story.  And this book fits that description.
I love Maggie.  She made some hard choices and she feels badly for having to make them but God in His mercy allows her a second chance.  
When Maggie has unexpected life changes, some by her choice some not, she continues on and more than anything her life speaks of perseverance and forgiveness.  
Ms. Carter has a way with words that makes a story flow from the page to the imagination of the reader's mind.  Those words also take the reader into the mind of the hero/heroine and their story becomes your "reality" for an hour or two.  And that's what makes reading a Love Inspired novel a true pleasure.
Be sure to grab this book for your summer reading.

  • Series: Love Inspired
  • Mass Market Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Love Inspired; Original edition (May 19, 2020)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1335488219
  • ISBN-13: 978-1335488213

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

 Such a great party idea!
Walking Banana Pudding:
Individual size Nilla wafers
Vanilla pudding 
And spray whip cream
So easy:
Open package of cookies, scoop 
pudding into bag, add cut up banana,
Top with whip cream.