Monday, October 25, 2021

Naomi's Gift by Amy Clipston


Book Description: Take a trip to Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania, where you'll meet the women of the Kauffman Amish Bakery in Lancaster County. As each woman's story unfolds, you will share in her heartaches, trials, joys, dreams ... and secrets. You'll discover how the simplicity of the Amish lifestyle can clash with the 'English' way of life---and the decisions and consequences that follow. Most importantly, you will be encouraged by the hope and faith of these women, and the importance they place on their families. Naomi's Gift re-introduces twenty-four-year-old Naomi King, who has been burned twice by love and has all but given up on marriage and children. As Christmas approaches---a time of family, faith, and hope for many others---Naomi is more certain than ever her life will be spent as an old maid, helping with the family's quilting business and taking care of her eight siblings. Then she meets Caleb, a young widower with a 7-year-old daughter, and her world is once again turned upside-down. 

My Review I love Christmas stories!  There's just something about the "magic" of the holiday.  And Amy Clipston once again pens a fascinating and heartwarming story set in the small village of Bird-in-Hand, Naomi's GIFT.
My heart goes out to Naomi . . . she lives for everyone else.  She's a hard working, kind hearted Amish lady.  She's one of those women that can easily bake, cook, clean, quilt and love her family.  But Naomi is "riddled" by sadness.  She longs to be married and have a family of her own but after two attempts of being "burned" by love, Naomi feels that she will probably be an old maid.  Not that she minds, but she just longs to love and be loved.
The story begins with Caleb, a widower, and his 7 year old daughter stopping at the farmer's market before visiting his aunt and uncle.  His daughter, Susie, takes off once they enter the market and heads directly for the quilts.  The quilts that Naomi makes.  It is here at the quilts that the distraught Caleb finds his lost daughter.  It is also where he and Naomi meet and Naomi is distraught by Caleb's eyes!  Oh!How! Those eyes speak!  Such sadness but "that" look says ever so much!
Caleb and Susie continue on their way, leaving Naomi to go on with her life only to meet Susie and Caleb at church.  Love this love story! 
This small book is packed with the"magic" of Christmas....a wonderful combination of love, adventure and His story!

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Dead Wrong (Agatha's Amish B&B) FREE ON AMAZON KINDLE UNTIL OCT. 31

 FREEBIE ALERT: On Amazon for Prime readers

Book Description:  When Agatha Lapp’s brother and sister-in-law are tragically killed in a buggy accident, Agatha relocates to the new Amish community in Hunt Texas, nestled in the Texas Hill Country.  She’s there to make a success of her brother’s dream--an Amish B&B. Agatha is friendly, efficient, and capable. She's also a fifty-five year old widow who has learned to be independent. When she discovers Russell Dixon’s lifeless body in Cabin 3, she runs next door where retired detective Tony Vargas lives. The police determine that her guest died of natural causes, but as Agatha and Tony put together the events of the previous two days they become convinced that the police are Dead Wrong.

My Thoughts:  I love books penned by Vannetta Chapman.  I also love cozy mysteries so this book is a win-win for me.
And THIS book cover!  It speaks of simplicity but, yet, there's that red color all throughout the cover.  Do you see the little red Amish buggy to the right of the house?  And that house!  It's so big and elegant.  What a nice B&B!
Then there's the name of the B&B-Agatha's Amish B&B.  A reference to Agatha Christie maybe? 
Agatha Lapp is one fiesta Amish woman and  If I were half as efficient as Agatha I'd have to get up pretty early in the morning to get it all done.  And she does it all with ease and grace not to mention solving a mystery.
And the setting of the story takes place in the Texas hill country.  Such a beautiful area.
This is a fun read.  Even though it's a cozy mystery the lightheartedness of the story brings the reader to a happy place of
I loved, loved this story!  

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

  • Series: Agatha's Amish B&B (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 298 pages
  • Publisher: Vannetta Chapman 
  • ISBN-10: 1734046007
  • ISBN-13: 978-1734046007

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Lost in Darkness (Of Monsters and Men) by Michelle Griep

 Book Description:  Travel writer Amelia Balfour’s dream of touring Egypt is halted when she receives news of a revolutionary new surgery for her grotesquely disfigured brother. This could change everything, and it does. . .in the worst possible way.

Surgeon Graham Lambert has suspicions about the doctor he’s gone into practice with, but he can’t stop him from operating on Amelia’s brother. Will he be too late to prevent the man’s death? Or to reveal his true feelings for Amelia before she sails to Cairo?

My Thoughts:  When I signed up for this blog tour I did not read the book description well or it didn't register.

So, as I began reading this novel I was expecting something ever so different.  My mistake not the author's.  

This is about Frankenstein.  Frankenstein, the title character in Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's novel Frankenstein, the prototypical “mad scientist” who creates a monster by which he is eventually killed. Lonely and miserable, the monster turns upon its creator, who eventually loses his life. 

The story begins innocently enough but as the reader continues in the story, it definitely takes on a different aura. 

This is the most unusual story but great for this time of year.  If you enjoy all things monster and kind.of.innocent then you'll love this read.

Even though this is the most unusual story, especially for a mystery/romance reader such as me, I found the story fascinating and so close to the original Frankenstein story with a few exceptions.  Unfortunately, I also found this story extremely sad.

Michelle Griep is a master story teller so you may love this novel.

*This book was provided for review by Barbour*

Sunday, October 17, 2021

An Amish Christmas Love: Four Novellas by Beth Wiseman, Amy Clipston, Ruth Reid, Kelly Irvin


Book Description:  Three generations of Stoltzfus women are all living under the same roof. At twenty-five, Naomi has never been married, and both her mother, Barbara, and her grandmother, Ruth, have recently been widowed. Each nursing broken or lonely hearts, they also each have potential suitors. When a storm on Christmas Eve forces the three couples to take shelter in the basement of the Stotlzfus homestead, secrets are revealed, hearts are opened, and all three potential grooms drop to their knees for very different reasons—a proposal, a prayer, and an epiphany.

My Thoughts:  Four short stories in one book!  I loved all of these wonderful stories.
Beth Wiseman writes about Winter Kisses.  A sweet story about the three generations of Stoltzfus women - Ruth, Barbara, and Naomi.  
Amy Clipston writes about the Christmas Cat.  This story is about a widow who has loved her Henry for 45 years but this Christmas she is all alone . . . until the cat comes along.  Lovable Emma and the cat!
A Home for Christmas authored by Ruth Reid is a story about Ellie and her poodle, Lulu. Will Ellie stay in the home her aunt has given her?
And then Kelly Irvin writes about Snow Angels  is a fun story about David and Molly.  They both like each other but when someone comes 
from David's past will their relationship survive?  
Four great short stories about the wonderful Christmas season and LOVE!  

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 052911870X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0529118707

Dead Set (Agatha's Amish B&B Book 3) by Vannetta Chapman

 Book Description: Agatha Lapp is elated when Channel 4 News decides to run a feature story on Amish businesses. The extra publicity should guarantee even more success for her Plain and Simple B&B, especially after she’s finished with the remodel. The cameras are rolling live when Agatha raises the rubber mallet and punches the first hole in her living room wall. That’s when things get complicated…

Hidden inside the wall is a diamond-studded belt buckle stolen twenty years earlier. The police return the buckle to the owners and refuse to re-open the case. The public is convinced more stolen goods are hidden at Agatha’s. When overzealous treasure hunters break into the B&B and a dead body is found half a mile down the road, Agatha knows she needs to take this investigation into her own hands.

With the help of a retired detective and her best friend, Agatha sets out to solve the mystery of the Lost Texas Treasures and find a killer. Their chase leads them through the Texas Hill Country to the famed YO Ranch where Agatha finds herself looking down the barrel of a gun. Suddenly, she’s no longer worried about a remodel. She just wants to live through this showdown.

My Thoughts:  I love stories authored by Vannetta Chapman.  I was over.the.moon.happy to receive this third book in Agatha's Amish B&B series.

This is the third book but it can be read as a stand alone.  But don't miss out on the first two books.  They are all fantastic.

I relate to Agatha's friend Gina.  We huff and puff and roll our eyes but we love our people and are always trying to help.

Tony is a great friend to Agatha.  And no matter if your Englisch or plain you need a boyfriend to help you with the "hard things."  Tony is also a retired policeman which doesn't hurt.

The mystery begins right away as Agatha hammers a whole in the wall on a local TV station.  And she finds a super expensive belt buckle in the wall.  Well it's off to a mystery...the why's and what if's begin but then it gets really exciting when Agatha and Tony head to the Texas Hill country.  Yeah, guns are involved just not on Agatha's hip but the uhmmm...other guy.

I loved this story.  I must say out of the the three books this was my favorite.  Maybe because it has a lot of excitement and romance.  And baked goods and coffee are always on the docket.

*I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own.*

Monday, October 11, 2021

Unscripted by Davis Bunn


Book Description:  Young line producer Danny Byrd is well-known in Hollywood for being someone who gets things done on time and under budget. But when his reputation takes a beating after his partner--and former best friend--makes off with their investors' money, Danny has but one chance to redeem himself and restore his ruined career.
LA lawyer Megan Pierce has sacrificed years of her life proving herself to her impossible bosses only to find herself disgusted at their snobbery and their specious business practices. When an opportunity to actually make a difference comes her way, she knows she has to grab it--even though she's not entirely clear what "it" is.
Danny and Megan are each other's best hope for redemption. What they never could have imagined was that they might also be each other's best hope for love.

My Thoughts:  Davis Bunn has always been one of my favorite authors and he has knocked it out of the ballpark with this newest novel. 
A WOW! read for sure!
When I first saw the title to this book I saw a man with the word Holy in the background.  Then I read the book description and thought Holy and Hollywood do not go together.  
But then as I read the story of Danny and Megan I thought, you know, the word Holy does fit in the story.
Danny is my kind of guy.  He's honest, upright and, maybe, a little too trusting. Then there's Megan she's a lot like Danny but, yet, so different.  
When you live in a cut throat business and a tinsel curtain is not the covering you need, well, welcome to Hollywood.
Such a wonderful story filled with deceit, snobbery but most of all filled with love, hope and redemption.
A Gotta Read!  

*This book was provided for review by Revell*

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Revell
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800727878
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800727871

The Amish Christmas Secret by Vannetta Chapman and the Amish Widow's Christmas Hope by Carrie Lighte

 My Thoughts: One of my favorite authors, Vannetta Chapman, has a double delight in reading with Carrie Lighte.  And it's all about the Amish and Christmas!  A win-win!

In the Amish Christmas Secret, Becca Schwartz is a question asking neighbor much to Daniel Glick's dismay.  So many questions he doesn't want to answer.  And Becca is more than curious why Daniel is so secretive.

This is a delightful full of romance between two very different people.

Then in The Amish Widow's Christmas Hope a single mom returns to the house she inherits and to the town she left.  

As her children begin friendships with her old love flame's children it makes it more difficult to leave the place where she grew up.

A lot of fun and frolicking in this read.

Two Amish stories that are completely different but so compelling in the love they exude for others and for Christmas.

*This book was provided for review by the author*

Sunday, October 10, 2021

A Time to Stand by Robert Whitlow


Book Description:  In a small Georgia town where racial tensions run high and lives are at stake, can one lawyer stand up for justice against the tide of prejudice on every side?

Adisa Johnson, a young African-American attorney, is living her dream of practicing law with a prestigious firm in downtown Atlanta. Then a split-second mistake changes the course of her career.

Left with no other options, Adisa returns to her hometown where a few days earlier a white police officer shot an unarmed black teen who is now lying comatose in the hospital.

Adisa is itching to jump into the fight as a special prosecutor, but feels pulled to do what she considers unthinkable—defend the officer.

As the court case unfolds, everyone in the small community must confront their own prejudices. Caught in the middle, Adisa also tries to chart her way along a path complicated by her budding relationship with a charismatic young preacher who leads the local movement demanding the police officer answer for his crime.

My Thoughts: 
Interesting how an author will write a fiction story about a current event in our world.  I think authors like to voice their opinions through a story.  
In any event, this is quite an interesting story.
Adisa Johnson is a young African-American attorney who enjoys living her dream of practicing law in Atlanta.
However, Adisa returns to her small Georgia hometown where racial tensions are flying high because a white police officer shot an unarmed black teen who is comatose in a hospital.  But Adisa must consider what she believes/stands for because she is to defend the police officer who shot the teen.
And she is in a budding romance with a charismatic young preacher who is demanding that the local police officers make this a crime and punish the police office who shot the black teen. 
This story is more about emotions and how people, no matter what the skin color, can be racist.
This is a . . .  what one really values and what one really believes is right no matter what ones skin color may be

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson 
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0718083032
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718083038

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

 Walking Banana Pudding

So easy just follow picture for putting it together.
Great for parties & family get togethers.

Monday, October 4, 2021

Life In Chapel Springs by Anne Mulligan


The Story BehindLife in Chapel Springs

by Ane Mulligan

The most asked question I get is what prompted this story. Why Lacey? Why the accident and reconstruction? I’m a visual writer, so I need photos. When I start out with a new book (in this case the series), I find photos of people who look like the character I’m imagining. I use magazines and keep files of faces I’ve torn out of them. While looking for Lacey, I came across two photos appearing almost like a before and after of the same woman.
The resemblance was striking and sparked the “what if” that became Lacey’s story. Many women have life-altering surgery, whether elective, emergency, or life-saving. My research included interviewing a plastic surgeon and a psychologist, so I could be sure I had the psyche right and the surgery results correct. You see, often—more often than not—women have a difficult time with the results of these life-altering surgeries. A high percentage dislike the “new” self. It doesn’t match the image we women tend to carry inside us.
I still had one problem. The character Lacey was a shy, quiet young woman—so shy and quiet, she wasn’t even talking to me! I had to sit on her story for three years. Finally, after two more Chapel Springs books, Lacey “talked” to me. I understood her and could write her story. Maybe she was ready to tell it. 

What both Lacey and I both hope women will take away from her story in Life in Chapel Springs is that each of us is uniquely made by God, and as Great Aunt Lola used to say, “God don’t make no junk.”

About Life in Chapel Springs:

Life in Chapel Springs has turned upside down and inside out.
Shy Lacey Dawson was happily writing murder mysteries for the community theater with her eye on Broadway. Then, a freak accident results in traumatic injuries requiring facial reconstruction. When the bandages come off, Lacey’s world is tuned inside out. Will Chapel Springs rally behind its own … or will life unravel?
Is it a midlife pregnancy or … cancer? Claire will keep her secret until she’s sure—but it isn’t easy. Neither is trying to buy a home pregnancy test without anyone finding out. Between her twins’ double wedding, the caterer cancelling, a looming nationwide art tour and her health, Claire’s life is upside down. 
Gold has been discovered in Chapel Springs and the ensuing fever is rising. Then Mayor Riley discovers someone has bought the mineral rights to his land. A stranger and his nefarious investors set out to buy all the homes in Chapel Springs and mine the gold. Will life in Chapel Springs become the tailings of a gold mine?

About Ane Mulligan:

While a large, floppy straw hat is her favorite, award-winning author Ane Mulligan has worn many: hairdresser, legislative affairs director (that's a fancy name for a lobbyist), CEO of a Community Theatre group, playwright, humor columnist, and novelist. She firmly believes coffee and chocolate are two of the four major food groups. Ane resides in Sugar Hill, GA, with her artist husband. You can find her on her websiteAmazon Author pageNovel RocketFacebookTwitterPinterestLinkedIn, and Google+.

Friday, October 1, 2021


Labyrinth of Lies, #2 By Irene Hannon

 Book Description:  When the daughter of a high-profile businessman disappears from an exclusive girls' boarding school, police detective Cate Reilly is tapped for an undercover assignment. It doesn't take her long to realize that beneath the veneer of polish and wealth, things are not as they seem at Ivy Hill Academy. But the biggest surprise of all? The only man she ever loved is also working at the school.

Zeke Sloan has never forgotten Cate, but now isn't the best time for their paths to cross again. When their two seemingly disparate agendas begin to intertwine--and startling connections emerge among the players--the danger escalates significantly. But who is the mastermind behind the elaborate ruse? And how far will they go to protect their house of cards?

My Thoughts:  I love this story!  I love the characters, the romance and the mystery.  And such an intriguing book cover.  Looks so gothic and suspenseful.

This is the second book in A Triple Threat Novel.  But never fear for these can be read out of order.  

The undercover assignment that Cate Reilly takes on is quite interesting especially since I love education.  But this posh Ivy Hill academy seems a bit sinister and why take a business man's daughter?  This is the mystery.

Cate Reilly is undercover at the Ivy Hill Academy and lo and behold, Zeke Sloan is also working at the posh school.  But why?  And can Cate keep her heart?  This is the romance.

Such a great story with quite a few twists and turns....twists and turns keep the reader's interest.

*This book was provided for review by Revell*