Friday, April 16, 2021

Matchmaker's Best Friend by Kari Trumbo

  


About the Book

Book:  Matchmaker’s Best Friend

Author: Kari Trumbo

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release date: March 30, 2021

“You’re just like a brother to me. I don’t like you in that way.”

When they dated ten years ago as teens, it almost destroyed their friendship. So Pen Reese did the only logical thing.  She lied about how she felt—and still feels—about him.

She’s still paying for that lie.

A brilliant plan to set Mike and a friend up and get over him has one problem.

It’s breaking her heart.

When Pen pushed him away, Mike Gaines assumed she just didn’t understand his faith. People like her persnickety aunt even claim he’s part of a cult—ridiculous, but it’s true. Still, if she wants him to play the part of a big brother, fine. At least he can stay close this way.

At first, Pen’s attempt to set him up with one of her close friends hurts. But what if it’s the perfect opportunity to show her what she’s missing if she sees him with someone else?

In this friends-to-more-meets-second-chance romance, The Matchmaker’s Best Friend continues the Elnora Island romances of the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.
The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

 My Thoughts:

This is a sweet friends to more book.  It is part of a series, but it stands alone just fine.  Pen and Mike are a cute couple and their journey from friends to more was really a fun read.  At times Pen got on my nerves a bit, but that is simply her personality.

I really and truly want to go to this island and just people watch!  The author's description of it just makes it seem like a wonderful place to visit.  While there were no real fireworks or huge romance moments between Pen and Mike, I enjoyed the book.  I thought it was really sweet.

4/5.

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book via Celebrate Lit.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Where western meets happily ever after.

Kari writes swoony heroes and places that become characters with detail and heart.
Her favorite place to write about is the place her heart lives, (even if she doesn’t) South Dakota.

Kari loves reading, listening to contemporary Christian music, singing when no one’s listening, and curling up near the wood stove when winter hits. She makes her home in central Minnesota, land of frigid toes and mosquitoes the size of compact cars, with her husband of over twenty years. They have two daughters, two sons, one cat, and one hungry wood stove.

 

More from Kari

Pen is Mightier than the Sword

Especially in sparkly, stacked espadrilles and pink power suit. Don’t let Pen Reese’s pink fa├žade fool you, she’s a businesswoman to the core, with a heart of gold. She has built a party planning business from the ground up, and she’s about to create another.

Pen is one of those characters that I could just see CLEARLY as I was writing. She is about ninety percent Elle Woods from Legally Blonde and ten percent a close personal friend. I heard her voice in my head. I could hear her talking as I wrote the book. Her personality was perfect for the energetic party planner.

I’m sure if I put a character description up without context or clarity many people wouldn’t want to read the book, they would write Pen off as shallow. But she’s not. She’s heartbroken.

Do you still remember your first love? Maybe you still care for them? Pen fell hard for her first love and no matter how professional she is or how many lavish weddings she plans, she can’t forget the one wedding she’ll never get to create. Her own.

Pen things that if Mike falls for someone else, goes off and gets married, she’ll finally be able to move on. So, she sets a plan in motion. That’s when her world completely falls apart and you see the tender parts of Pen that she doesn’t show to just anybody.

She is a very complex character and I hope she touches you like she touched me.

I hope you enjoy Pen’s tale of matchmaking gone wrong.

Blog Stops

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 14

Books and Everyday Life, April 14

Labor Not in Vain, April 14

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 15

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, April 15

lakesidelivingsite, April 16

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 16

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 17

Rebekah Reads, April 17

Artistic Nobody, April 17 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 18

A Novel Pursuit, April 18

She Lives To Read, April 19

deb’s Book Review, April 19

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, April 20

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, April 20

Splashes of Joy, April 20

Aryn the Libraryan, April 21

For Him and My Family, April 21

Texas Book-aholic, April 22

Blogging With Carol, April 22

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 23

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, April 23

CarpeDiem, April 23

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 24

Connect in Fiction, April 24

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 25

Simple Harvest Reads, April 25 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Inklings and notions, April 26

Godly Book Reviews, April 26

Batya’s Bits , April 26

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 27

Blossoms and Blessings, April 27

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kari is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10acd/matchmaker-s-best-friend-celebration-tour-giveaway

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Cooking Up a Mystery by Gail Pallotta

  


About the Book

Book:  Cooking Up A Mystery

Author: Gail Pallotta

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Release date: April 24, 2020

Laney Eskridge worked to put her husband through dental school. Then he left with another woman. She’s on edge from the emotional scars and her parents’ deaths. Then she hears unexplained noises in her new tea house, and her anxiety is tripled. Add a budding romance with Eric—a guy with a fear of commitment—and it’s all too much to handle. She cuts ties with Eric and plunges into making her business pay off.

When Eric discovers that Laney’s in danger, he vows to protect her. But can he make a lasting promise? Will she trust him? . . .and when they overhear a threat that could cause national turmoil, will anyone believe them? There’s more brewing than herbal tea in Cooking up a Mystery.

 My Thoughts:

I love me a good cozy mystery!  Laney's shop isn't doing well (to put it mildly).  Eric is a great guy, but has commitment issues.  This book has a great mix of everything, romance, mystery, and more.  I loved the mix and the scary noises had my interest piqued from the start.

Eric just made me smile.  I liked him from the start.  He has his issues, but he really is a good guy.  Laney has her own issues and I felt so bad for her about her parents (and her ex for that matter).  It just made my heart twist for her.  It was a predictable story, but I enjoyed getting into it and meeting all the characters.  Overall, it was just a good story and I'm glad I read it.

4/5

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book via Celebrate Lit.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Award-winning author Gail Pallotta’s a wife, Mom, swimmer and bargain shopper who loves
God, beach sunsets and getting together with friends and family. A 2013 Grace Awards finalist, she’s a Reader’s Favorite 2017 Book Award winner and a TopShelf 2020 Book Awards Finalist. She’s published six books, poems, short stories and several hundred articles. Some of her articles appear in anthologies while two are in museums.

 

More from Gail

In Cooking up a Mystery running a business with no background or formal training in accounting or management overwhelms Laney, the heroine. George, her assistant, tells her she has him and God, who knows her needs. Then he adds, “You … have your mom’s wonderful recipes and you whip them up like a pro.”

 

I chose the food industry for Laney, a woman entrepreneur succeeding against the odds, because I have lots of cooking experience. I learned the skill at age ten. The reason, according to my father—I’d know how when I got married. I didn’t marry until I was thirty. By then, I’d received lots of instruction, so I knew how to prepare some pretty good dinners. My husband said, “You could start a restaurant.” I wanted to do other things instead, such as write, but I started one in this book.

 

Mt first woman entrepreneur appears in Hair Calamities and Hot Cash, a romantic comedy about a hairstylist. It’s set in Eve’s Clips, a salon in Triville, a fictitious town in the North Carolina Mountains where Laney opens Laney’s Delectable Delights.

 

A section in the back of Cooking up a Mystery, Laney’s Chefs in the Making, features over two dozen recipes. Only Laney’s Pineapple Rice is mine. The rest are from a book, Heavenly Delights, authored by my friend, Pam Nichols Griffin, as a fundraiser for Mission Love Seeds, a charity that helps children throughout the world and responds locally after disasters to demonstrate God’s love.

Laney’s Pineapple Rice

Ingredients:

 

Rice (can be instant, but not boil-in-the-bag)

Cooking oil or spray

One small onion (chopped thin)

Five cloves garlic (or minced gloves equaling five cloves)

One tablespoon fresh grated ginger

One cup fresh pineapple

Small amount of pineapple juice

One teaspoon sugar

One lime

 

Cook rice according to directions on the box, but substitute a couple of tablespoons to 1/4 cup pineapple juice (depending on taste) for part of the water.

 

Chill rice

 

Coat a heavy bottom skillet with oil. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, pineapple and sugar and stir. Add cold rice, break up, squirt with the juice of one lime and stir until heated and blended.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 9

Blogging With Carol, April 9

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 10

She Lives To Read, April 11

Texas Book-aholic, April 11

Inklings and notions, April 12

Genesis 5020, April 12

For Him and My Family, April 13

deb’s Book Review, April 14

Worthy2Read, April 14

Reflections From My Bookshelves, April 15

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 16

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 17

Godly Book Reviews, April 17

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 18

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 19

CarpeDiem, April 19

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 20

April Hayman, Author, April 20

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 21

Simple Harvest Reads, April 21 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 22

Labor Not in Vain, April 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Gail is giving away  the grand prize of a $40 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

 https://promosimple.com/ps/10a4e/cooking-up-a-mystery-celebration-tour-giveaway

Sunset on Moonlight Beach by Sheila Roberts


Book Description:

 USA TODAY bestselling author Sheila Roberts takes readers back to the sun-dappled shores of Moonlight Harbor as its citizens find hope, happiness and humor in the wake of a tragic loss.


Jenna Jones has been standing on the shore of the Sea of Love for too long. Even with two good men interested in her, she's been afraid to wade in. According to her best friend, Courtney, she should. The water’s fine. Life is great! Practically perfect, if you don’t count Courtney’s problems with her cranky ex-boss. Maybe Courtney’s right. It’s time to dive in.

When tragedy strikes, everything changes and Jenna's more confused than ever. But this fresh heartache might help her figure out at last who she can turn to when times get tough.

Full of warmth and humor, Sunset on Moonlight Beach proves that every ending can be the beginning of a beautiful new story.

“A sun-dappled, ocean-splashed, and superbly satisfying addition to the endlessly charming Moonlight Harbor series.” Booklist on The Summer Retreat


My Thoughts:

Oh my Jenna had a lot going on, so why not add some more?  With everything and then trying to date 2 guys at once...well like I said, a lot going on.  I loved the laughs thrown in at just the right time to not let things get too intense.  This is in a series, but I didn't feel lost at all and loved the characters.

The love triangle, you just have to choose which guy you like best (oh and don't forget an ex that's ugh!).  The writer's style was one I really enjoyed, you could tell she loves the characters and the place and makes you love them too.  Overall, its a place I want to go back and revisit!

4/5 for me.  I truly enjoyed the entire story.

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book via PUYB.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Blessed and Transformed by Dr. Jeannine Bennett

 


About the Book

Book:  Blessed and Transformed

Author: Dr. Jeannine Bennett

Genre: Christian Nonfiction (Women’s Bible Study)

Release date: October 2020

What do you do when God answers your prayers, renews your mind, and transforms you?

Life does not always turn out the way we hope. It is often filled with tragedy, heartbreak, and loss, but make no mistake, God doesn’t abandon us during those times. Instead, God uses every experience we encounter to transform us so we can live the life He intended when He created us.

As Christians, we understand that we live in a fallen world. A world where dwelling on past failures or falling prey to the same sins seems normal. But what happens when God opens our spiritual eyes and shows us a different way to live? Do you run to Him and embrace the change? Do you find your calling and live out your purpose?

In Blessed and Transformed, Jeannine Bennett shares how much sweeter life is when you recognize God’s blessings and fully embrace His transformation of your life. She shows you there is no limit to what you can endure or accomplish by keeping God front and center.

 My Thoughts:

To me this book feels half personal experience and half devotional.  Its a good mix and I think the author did a good job with it.  Telling her story and how God transformed her was a beautiful thing to read.  I don't fully agree with everything in there but the overall theme of God can transform you into what He wants you to be is great.

I really enjoyed the scripture references and how much she loves God.  You can tell from her writing that God truly did transform her and she wants to tell everyone.  I love that.  Overall, it was a good book and I enjoyed reading it.

It was a 3/5 for me.

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book via Celebrate Lit.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Jeannine Bennett is a wife to Hayden, mom to four children, and grandmother to seven
grandchildren. Her children are named Sandra, Brittany, Camryn, and Zachary. Her grandchildren are Colin, Lilyana, Willow, Savannah, Winter, and Hope. She is the founder and CEO of Vision to Purpose, located in Virginia Beach, Virginia, an adjunct faculty member in the School of Business for Liberty University Online, and an executive coach for The Honor Foundation.

To those who know Jeannine, she is simply a woman who loves Jesus, is devoted to her family, and struggles with life’s challenges like the rest of us. She is not immune to bad hair days, shrinking clothes (weight gain), or sleepless nights. She loves learning and sharing the knowledge acquired to help others learn too. Her favorite ice cream is a toss-up between butter pecan and mint chocolate chip. And, although she has lived in Virginia for more than 30 years, she still calls a water fountain a bubbler. A term she grew up saying in her hometown of Racine, Wisconsin.

 

More from Jeannine

In my previous book, Broken to Beautiful, I shared my testimony. The first half of my story was filled with hopelessness, disappointment, heartache, and loss. The second half described accounts of undeniable blessings. I have chosen to continue my story in Blessed and  Transformed because I want to further the conversation about what happens when we

receive all of those blessings.

 

Friends, we cannot have blessings without being transformed. Just as each trial, each struggle, each challenge changes us, each blessing is a gift that God uses to change us too.

 

I believe blessings are God’s way of showing that He loves us. I also think He uses those blessings to nudge us forward in pursuit of what He has called us to do.

 

I pray this book is a blessing to you!

 

In Christ,

Jeannine

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 8

Splashes of Joy, April 8

Library Lady’s Kit Lit, April 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 10

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 11

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 12

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 13

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 14

Lights in a Dark World, April 14

Texas Book-aholic, April 15

Inklings and notions, April 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 17

For Him and My Family, April 18

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 19

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 20

deb’s Book Review, April 21

Mary Hake, April 21

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Jeannine is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10a4d/blessed-and-transformed-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Texas Trails by Caryl McAdoo

  


About the Book

Book: Texas Trails

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: March 6, 2021

The steps of a righteous man are guided by the Lord.

Rife with adventure, this rights-of-passage story comes to life as Enoch Lowell and his best
friend Gus strike out to Kansas with their herd of beeves, hoping to earn a profit and cut the apron strings. What they find on the prairie changes their lives forever. Promises made, promises kept, but nowhere is it written there can’t be a happy ending for all. A true Texas trail tale to warm your heart!   

 My Thoughts:

This is a really good coming of age book.  I love these kind of books and the setting for this one was great.  This is book 6 in the series, but I haven't read them all and followed along just fine to enjoy the story.  Enoch and Gus have parents that are overly overprotective.  The two set off on an adventure to prove that they can handle themselves and to get some much needed space.

I really enjoyed the cattle drive aspect of the story and it really made me feel that I was there.  Things happen when they are on their own that changes their perspectives and introduces some new characters (that I really enjoyed meeting).  The problem is, their parents didn't go along on the cattle drive and still expect certain things when they return.  I think this was a really well written book that I will be keeping.

5/5.

Thank you to the author/publisher for the review copy of this book via Celebrate Lit.  I received this book in exchange for an honest review and the opinions stated above are 100% mine.

Click here to get your copy!

 

About the Author

Award-winning author Caryl McAdoo prays her story brings God glory, and her best-selling stories—over fifty-five published—delight Christian readers around the world. The prolific writer also enjoys singing the new songs the Lord gives her; you may listen at YouTube. Sharing four children and nineteen grandsugars (three greats), Caryl and Ron (her high-school-sweetheart-husband of over fifty years) live in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas. The McAdoos wait expectantly for God to open the next door.

 

More from Caryl

Get along little doggie!

TEXAS TRAILS is the sixth novel in the Cross Timbers Family Saga series. I’d never written much about being on a cattle drive and thought it would be great fun. Back in the Texas Romance Family Saga series, Charley Nightingale made several trips to Kansas with a herd and took his son Nathaniel, but I skipped over the actual drive part.

 

Readers first met co-hero Enoch Lowell in QUINCY & PRISCILLA then got to know him better in DUPLICITY At The Lowell House when his best friend Gus Hale (TEXAS TRAIL’s other co-hero) is introduced. Both those stories are set in 1866. For TEXAS TRAILS, it’s three years later, and Enoch is ready to declare himself a man and start earning his own way. Driving a bunch of cows up to Kansas sounds like the ticket to cut his mother’s apron strings and earn some dollars in the process.

 

The son of Morgan and Charity O’Neal Lowell (LEAVING TEXAS, book four) and grandson of Liberty O’Neal Harrell (GONE TO TEXAS, book one) talks Gus into going with him, and as partners, they start building a herd. All the while, Charity is pitching a fit as her plan for her firstborn includes Harvard University.

 

One thing I loved about this story is that Morgan sets it up—behind the scenes of course—for trusted men to take in his son and Gus on their trail drive. Enters the infamous Texas Ranger Levi Baylor (Texas Romance Family Saga book two HEARTS STOLEN) and the boy he reared as his own (grown now), Charley Nightingale!

 

I already love those two men from my earlier Texas Romance Family Saga series—just as my readers do—and totally relished their appearance in this story! Revisiting old beloved friends brings great joy to this author, in real life and my fictitious world!! I adore crossing these characters over the two series!

 

So many things are apt to happen out on the prairie that cowboys never expect. There are rivers to cross and the natives to deal with, some who pose real danger to life and limbs! Cows birth calves, storms descend, and herds stampede, but that’s not all that can make a cowboy’s days rough. Enoch’s and Gus’s lives are definitely changed forever on the out there on the trail.

 

I’m thinking if I were a younger woman, I would totally enjoy going along on their cattle drive! How about you?

Blog Stops

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, April 7

Simple Harvest Reads, April 7 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Lakesidelivingsite, April 8

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, April 9

Connie’s History Classroom, April 10

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 11

deb’s Book Review, April 12

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, April 13

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 13

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 14

For Him and My Family, April 15

Texas Book-aholic, April 16

Inklings and notions, April 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 18

Splashes of Joy, April 19

Pause for Tales, April 19

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 20

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon Gift Card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10a4b/texas-trails-celebration-tour-giveaway