My Review: Things Worth Remebering by Jackina Stark

Things Worth Remembering
by Jackina Stark

Christian Fiction/Contemporary

Bethany House Publishers
Copyright 2009
Pages: 316
ISBN: 9780764207112

An Emotionally Gripping Story of Broken Relationships Restored

Kendy Laswell and her daughter, Maisey, used to do everything together--until one fateful summer when Maisey witnessed something she shouldn't have, and their relationship fractured. Now, Maisey is back home to get married and Kendy realizes this is her last chance to reconnect with her daughter. Will Kendy and Maisey be able to reclaim the bond they once shared?

Maisey asked for a bride doll the Christmas she was five, mesmerized by her aunt's wedding the fall before. Since then I've been dreaming of the day, or days, we would shop for her wedding dress. A mother helping her daughter find just the right creation for that momentous walk down the aisle strikes me as one of life's happiest endeavors. The night she called to tell us she'd bought her "dream of a gown," I sat beside Luke on the couch, a striking contrast to Maisey's exuberance.

My dejection seemed a tad inappropriate. "Being hurt because I wasn't included is silly, isn't it?" I asked.

"Not so silly," he said.

Will I ever quit longing for the Maisey who was once mine?

My Thoughts:

Things Worth Remembering is a touching story of a mother and daughter who have a very detached relationship, due to a horrible secret that has been kept for the past nine years. The story takes place during the week before Maisey and Marcus' upcoming wedding. They have come home, to Maisey's parents house, to get things in order before the big day. After a few days spent with the Laswell's, Marcus begins to notice that Maisey either completely ignores her mother, Kendy, or treats her very insolently. He finally confronts her with his observation, which causes a massive family struggle to finally confront the secret that has been the cause of all their anger and hurt.

The book goes back and forth between Kendy's and Maisey's points-of-view throughout the entire story. At first I thought it was going to be a problem, but once I became engrossed in their lives, I didn't even notice. This is not my normal choice of reading; I prefer contemporary and historical romances, but decided to give this book a try...the beautiful cover is partly why I chose it. I'm so glad I did...I thoroughly enjoyed it! I can't wait to read more books by Ms. Stark.

If you'd like to find out more about Jackina Stark and/or her books, be sure to visit her at: www.jackinastark.com.

*This book was provided for review by Bethany House Publishers*




My Review: Emmy's Equal by Marcia Gruver

Emmy's Equal
(Texas Fortunes, Book 3)
by Marcia Gruver

Christian Fiction/Romance/Historical

Copyright 2009
Barbour Publishing, Inc.
Pages: 319
ISBN: 978160262076

From the author:

1907 Carrizo Springs, Texas

Emily (Emmy) Dane’s recent decision to trust God with her life has yet to rub off on her stubborn spirit. After eighteen years of catering to unruly flesh, Emmy’s having trouble surrendering her will. When she realizes God is steering her toward marriage to the last man on earth she’d choose for herself, she bucks like an unbroken stallion.

Diego (Isi) Marcelo
can’t be labeled a half-breed because there’s more than two cultures in the mix. His father was a Spanish merchant, his mother part Choctaw and part Scottish trader. Isi, his Indian name, means deer in his grandmother’s tongue, but the locals north of the Mexican border allege his name should be El Toro.

My Thoughts:

Emmy Dane is very upset that her parents are making her go along as they escort her Mama's best friend, Bertha (Bertie) Bloom, to Carrizo Springs, Texas. She would rather travel to St. Louis to see her best friend, Charity, Aunt Bertie's daughter. Charity has just recently had her first baby and Emmy is anxious for a visit.

Emmy's relationship with her father, Willem, is strained at best. She can't figure out why he is always losing his patience with her, or why he doesn't seem to love her. Did she do something wrong in her childhood to cause these feelings? She can remember happier times, but all of a sudden everything seemed to change; Emmy really misses that closeness with her father.

Diego (Isi) Marcelo is the foreman at the Rawson's Twisted-R Ranch. He lives on the ranch with his mother, Melatha, in her humble jacal. She has taught him the ways of his Choctaw ancestors, as well as his father's Spanish heritage. As the ranch foreman, Diego feels like a part of the family, especially since ranch owner, John Rawson, treats him better than his own son, Cuthbert (Cuddy). Diego tries to get father and son to talk through their differences, but disaster strikes before they have a chance. Even though Cuddy and Diego have a falling-out, they're there for each other when trouble comes, besides, what are "brothers" for?

Even though this book was enjoyable, it isn't my favorite of the series. It took me awhile to get into the story, but about halfway through, my interest was finally piqued. If you enjoy historical romances that involve cowboys, cattle drives, banditos, and romantic conflict...this book is for you! Be sure to read the first two books in the series first, Diamond Duo and Chasing Charity, since they do continue with the same characters.

If you're interested in finding out more about the author, and/or her books, please visit Marcia Gruver at www.marciagruver.com

*This book was purchased by me and will be passed on to my sister, to add to her collection.*


A-Z Wednesday

This really fun book meme is hosted by
Vicki @ Reading at the Beach.

The rules are pretty simple...

1. Visit Vicki to get this week's letter.
2. Browse through your shelves for a book that starts with this week's letter.
3. Post the following info about the book you've chosen on your blog:
~ Photo, synopsis/description, link (Amazon, Christian Books, Borders, etc.)
4. Hurry back to Reading at the Beach and post a comment with a link to your post.

Love Finds You in Valentine Nebraska

by Irene Brand

Christian Fiction/Romance/Inspirational

Summerside Press
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781934770382

(from Amazon):

Product Description

Love Finds You in Valentine, Nebraska What can a California girl do with a few dusty acres of land in rural Nebraska? So Kennedy Blaine wonders after she inherits a ranch in the small, western-style town of Valentine, Nebraska. As Kennedy makes arrangements to sell the property, she finds herself drawn to the ranch and to its attractive manager, Derek Sterling. She decides to spend the summer in her ancestral home and reconnect with family members. But soon Kennedy is subjected to harassment by someone who clearly wants her to leave Valentine. Depending on Gods protection and Dereks assistance, she sets out to discover who is behind the offenses. But when her search reveals painful details about her family and raises questions about Dereks own past, will Kennedy still want to know the truth? Love Finds You is a series of full-length romance novels that give readers a peek into the flavor of local life across the United States. The novels are uniquely named after actual American towns with quirky, interesting names that inspire romance and are just plain fun! This means that each fictional story draws on the compelling history or unique character of a real place. Our fresh, original love stories will feature everything from romance kindled in small towns, to old loves lost and found on the high plains, to new loves discovered at exciting vacation getaways.

About the Author

In a writing career spanning three decades, Irene has won numerous awards and published 45 books with sales of more than two million copies. Irene primarily writes inspirational romances, but she has also published nonfiction books, devotional materials and magazine articles. Before she became a fulltime writer, Irene taught for 23 years in public schools. Her other passions include traveling (she and her husband have visited all 50 states and 35 foreign countries) and history (she holds a Masters Degree in the subject). Her published titles include Where Morning Dawns, Listen to Your Heart, and the Kentucky Brides collection. Irene is an active member of her church and is affiliated with several writing organizations. She is a lifelong resident of West Virginia, where she lives with her husband, Rod.

***Click here to read my review***


Waiting on Wednesay

(Compliments of Jill @ Breaking the Spine)
It allows bloggers to feature pre-publication
books that they are eagerly anticipating!

(Normally, I only post this meme on my other blog, but I
had to share this upcoming release with everyone!)

This week I've chosen a book I've been eagerly waiting to see the cover art for...it was worth the wait!!

A Love of Her Own
(Heart of the West, Book 3)
by Maggie Brendan

Release date:
June 1, 2010

(from Amazon):

Product Description

April McBride has suffered a broken engagement once before and fully intends to guard her heart when she travels to Billings, Montana, to attend her brother's wedding. One look around the small mining town convinces April that this won't be difficult--just a bunch of dusty shops, bad service, and ill-bred cowboys. But a run-in with a horse trainer named Wes Owen opens up vast possibilities for frustration, embarrassment, friendship, and . . . love? Can April and Wes see past their differences in order to envision a future together? Readers will love going on this adventurous, spark-filled ride through turn-of-the-century Montana.

Praise for Maggie Brendan: "Brendan's gentle style of prairie romance is reminiscent of Janette Oke . . . capturing the heart of the old West with romance that will make you sigh."--Julie Lessman, author of the Daughters of Boston series
"Brendan blends colorful characters, lively dialogue, and intriguing historical details."--Amanda Cabot, author of Paper Roses and Scattered Petals

From the Inside Flap

EXCERPT FROM CATALOG "Thanks for coming to share in our happiness, Wes," Josh gripped his hand. "One day, it's going to be your turn." "Oh, I doubt that. I'm not the marrying kind." "Don't you mean no one could put up with you?" Josh teased his new friend. "You may be exactly right. Horses are my main focus and I haven't found a gal yet that wanted to share in horse training for her future." He shrugged his shoulders. "You never know, Wes. When one falls in love, stranger things can happen." Juliana said. "I'm looking for a young man who rode up this afternoon when I was training Ed's mare. Never seen him before but I think he must have been one of your guests that came in late." "You must mean my sister, April," Josh pointed across the room, indicating the woman in a yellow dress. Wes followed to where he pointed. His jaw dropped. An attractive, slender blonde stood chatting with Margaret and Louise. "No, Josh. It was a young man in a long duster and floppy hat." No way that this was the same person that he saw in dirty jeans and duster shouting at him earlier! Josh shook his head. "I'm trying to tell you--it was April, my sister over there. Come on, I'll introduce you to her."

Doesn't this sound like a great book?? I don't know how I'm going to survive until June 1, 2010! I want to read this book NOW!! If you haven't had a chance to read Maggie's debut series...you don't know what you're missing! Please go out/online and order your very own copies of the first 2 books in this trilogy...you're going to love them!! Here they are:

No Place for a Lady
(Heart of the West, Book 1)
by Maggie Brendan

The Jewel of His Heart
(Heart of the West, Book 2)
by Maggie Brendan


My Review: Three Times Blessed (Brides of Timber Creek, Bk 2) by Lori Copeland

Three Times Blessed
(Brides of Timber Creek, Bk 2)
by Lori Copeland
Avon Inspire
(an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers)
Copyright 2009
Pages: 278
ISBN: 9780061364938

Back Cover:

How will Audrey and her fellow schoolmarms stay afloat when a flood threatens their small Texas town?

Typically, Thunder Ridge, Texas, is dry as a bone. But Audrey Pride has arrived under a storm cloud, one that is deluging the shocked community with weeks of relentless, drenching rain. With travel in and out of town rendered impossible, there is much important work for her to do - especially when an epidemic of violent illness, originating from a stranded wagon train, spreads rapidly throughout Thunder Ridge. Caring for the sick is consuming Audrey's every waking hour...yet her thoughts keep returning to the attractive widower Eli Gray.

Eli has long been haunted by the fact that he was away at war when his beloved wife died in childbirth. Little by little, however, he is opening his heart again. Now, as their town sags under the crushing weight of water and disease, Audrey and Eli will need to depend on each other in ways they never imagined possible.

My Review:

We catch up with Audrey as she and Copper Wilson, her close friend and fellow schoolmarm, arrive in Thunder Ridge, Texas, in the midst of the biggest rainstorm the town has ever seen. Their arrival is a catastrophe in and of itself! It sets the pace for the rest of the book. Audrey and Copper are coming to stay with their best friend, Willow Madison, who is also a schoolmarm, until they leave in the fall to start teaching at their very own schools, in the surrounding cities. Audrey receives some very disappointing, heart-breaking news before she even has a chance to get out of the rain; now she has no idea what to do, or where to turn.

Eli Gray lives with his Ma and his young son, Tate. He runs the timber mill with his cousins, Tucker and Caleb. Ever since his wife passed away, he doesn't feel worthy of a woman's love. He slowly allows Audrey into his heart, but it takes a lot of prayer, as well as, patience from Audrey to finally get Eli to see that he is indeed worthy of her love.

In my opinion, you will enjoy this book a lot more if you read, Twice Loved, first, as this book begins pretty much where book one leaves off. Once you've done that, you're ready to enjoy this fast-paced, very "wet" historical romance! I thoroughly enjoyed Three Times Blessed, but I think Twice Loved is still my favorite. I can't wait to read Copper's story, One True Love...I have a feeling it's going to be a real firecracker! You'll understand why as you get to know Copper. :)

To find out more about Lori Copeland and/or her books, please visit her at: www.loricopeland.com

*I purchased this book myself, to add to my growing collection.*



My Review: Cowboy Christmas by Mary Connealy

Cowboy Christmas
by Mary Connealy
Copyright 2009
Pages: 304
Barbour Publishing
ISBN: 9781602601451

Back cover:

A Secretive singer reawakens a cowboy's wounded heart at Christmastime.

Singer Annette Talbot used her voice to spread the gospel with a traveling missionary troupe. When the Leveques take over and want Annie to dress provocatively and give up singing her beloved hymns, Annie flees to Ranger Bluff, Wyoming, dreaming of reuniting with her father for Christmas. But trouble chases her - right off the edge of a cliff!

Elijah Walker's heart turned as cold and barren as the high plains in December after his ex-fiancee betrayed him and caused his father's death. But when he rescues Annie out of a freezing river, Walker's instincts tell him he must help a stranger in need.

With her hermit father retreating to the high country and the Leveques intent of kidnapping her to make money off her singing, Annie may have no way out.

Has Annie hidden the truth about wanted posters bearing her face too long for anyone to believe her now? Can Elijah overcome the painful past and learn to love again? Will there ever be peace in their hearts in time for Christmas?

My Review:

Cowboy Christmas was not at all what I expected. Honestly, it took me awhile to read it. I picked it up, and put it down, quite a few times before I finally finished it. That's highly unusual for Mary's books...normally I devour them in one sitting. I don't know why it didn't hold my attention as much as her other books, such as, Montana Rose, which I absolutely loved! (my review here) That being said, Cowboy Christmas is not a bad book, it just didn't draw me in for some reason. I have been having a hard time getting into my normal reading mood this past week, so maybe it's me, and not the book at all. If you find this book appealing, by all means, pick up a copy and read it for yourself. I plan to read it again later on, and see if I feel differently.

The character of Ruby Walker was my favorite. I loved her gritty determination, and loyalty to her son, as well as her friends and ranch hands. She also stayed true to God through all of her trials and heart-break. She took Annie under her wing from the very beginning, and didn't waver in her belief of Annie's innocence...even when her own son had plenty of doubts.

Elijah and Annie's journey to find each other is a long and difficult one; hindered by many feelings of self-doubt, untrustworthy feelings, and heartrending grief. In the end, they come to the conclusion that with God, all things truly are possible.

If you're interested in finding out more about Mary Connealy, and/or her books, please visit her website: www.maryconnealy.com or her blog: Mary Connealy ~ Real Life Petticoat Ranch.

*I purchased this book myself on eBay, and will be passing it on to my Mom*


Another Chance to win The Jewel of His Heart!!!!

For those of you that entered my giveaway, but weren't the lucky winner...here's another chance for you to win!!! Just visit Deborah Vogts' blog, Country at Heart, and
enter her drawing! GOOD LUCK!!

Be sure to check out her debut novel, Snow Melts in Spring, too!
**Read my review here**

A-Z Wednesday

This really fun book meme is hosted by
Vicki @ Reading at the Beach.

The rules are pretty simple...

1. Visit Vicki to get this week's letter.
2. Browse through your shelves for a book that starts with this week's letter.
3. Post the following info about the book you've chosen on your blog:
~ Photo, synopsis/description, link (Amazon, Christian Books, Borders, etc.)
4. Hurry back to Reading at the Beach and post a comment with a link to your post.

Kiss Me If You Dare
(Patricia Amble Mystery series, Book 3)
by Nicole Young

Christian Fiction/Mystery/

Revell Publishing
Pages: 386
ISBN: 9780800731595

(from Amazon)

When readers last saw renovator Tish Amble she was running for her life, her boyfriend Brad left wounded and at the mercy of drug lords in northern Michigan. On Brad's advice, Tish heads for Del Gloria, California, to hide out with an old friend of his--professor Denton Braddock. Tish tries to start a normal life, enrolling in college and working on restoring a block of homes, but her past is catching up with her. Someone is sabotaging her work, and Brad hasn't called in months. Should she return to Michigan to find out what has happened? Or would a homecoming be more painful--and deadly--than she's ready for? Full of the fast-paced action and nail-biting suspense readers have come to expect from author Nicole Young, Kiss Me If You Dare is the thrilling conclusion to the Patricia Amble Mysteries.

Tish Amble is dead--or so she's been told On the run from a backwoods Michigan drug ring that wants her dead, Tish Amble finds herself in sunny California with an assumed identity and a mysterious benefactor. All she wants to do is lay low for awhile, then return to her family--including her almost-fiancé Brad. Instead, she ends up trying to start a normal life, going back to work on the college degree she postponed long ago, and restoring a block of homes. But her past catches up with her. Someone sabotages her work, and Brad hasn't called in months. Should she return to Michigan to find out what has happened? Or would a homecoming be more painful--and deadly--than she's ready for? Full of fast-paced action and nail-biting suspense, Kiss Me If You Dare is the thrilling conclusion to the Patricia Amble Mysteries. Nicole Young has a degree in communications and has earned several awards for speechwriting and presentation. In 2004 she won the Noble Theme Award for the Best First Chapter from the American Christian Romance Writers. She is the author of Love Me If You Must and Kill Me If You Can and lives with her family in Michigan.

This is yet another series in my TBR piles that I've yet to get to! Maybe one day soon...


We have a WINNER!!!

I used Random.org to draw the winner's name for me, and the winner of my very first blog giveaway is...................

Mimi (mnjesusfreak{at}gmail{dot}com)

I'm sending Mimi an email to tell her the good news...if I don't hear back from her within 48 hours...another winner will be drawn.

THANK YOU all for joining me for my first blog giveaway ~ I hope it's the first of many! I'm already trying to decide which book(s) I want to giveaway next!! *grin* I hope to be able to do this at least once a month...so be sure to come by often.

My Review: The Jewel of His Heart (Heart of the West series, Bk 2) by Maggie Brendan

The Jewel of His Heart
(Heart of the West Series, Bk 2)
by Maggie Brendan

Christian Fiction/

Copyright 2009
Pages: 333
ISBN: 9780800733506
Revell Publishers

The Jewel of His Heart takes us to the mountains of Montana in the 1890s, where we find Josh McBride herding sheep with his faithful companion, Shebe. Josh had a falling out with his father three years earlier, which lead to his decision to pursue shepherding instead of ranching. He met, and hired, Andy as his cook, as well as, his sheepherder. Even with quite a bit of years between them, they've become close friends who work really well together. Josh is always telling Andy, "If you were a woman, I'd marry you", because he's an excellent cook!

We also meet Juliana Brady, who lost her mother suddenly, and has no idea where her father is, or if he's even alive. She's not yet eighteen, but already feels all alone in the world. She's so mad at God for not bringing her father home, that she can barely stand to have a conversation that involves Him. She no longer attends church or reads her Bible, and since her mother passed away, she's even more angry. Her best friend, Marion Stockton, insists that Juliana move into her family's hotel indefinitely, since she has no where else to go. Juliana eventually finds a job, meets new friends, and starts to enjoy life again.

Even though Josh is falling for Juliana, he feels she is much too young to be interested in him, and that she could do a lot better than a lowly sheepherder like himself. Juliana has feelings for Josh, but tries not to entertain them because she promised her Mama that she would not depend on a man as her only means of survival; she's determined to take care of herself.
Josh and Juliana encounter some really tough times, but learn to lean on God, their friends, and each other to see them through.

The Jewel of His Heart is excellent!! I simply cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this book, but I'll try my best! At first, I thought No Place for a Lady (book 1) was going to be my favorite book in this series, but now I'm not so sure...these are both wonderful books that will touch your heart. I met so many wonderful people in the town of Lewistown, that I'm sorry to leave them. There was one person I was not overly fond of throughout most of the book, but by the last few chapters, Wes Owen had carved himself a place in my heart. I'm hoping to see him again and find out what happens when God catches up with him! I'm also anxious to find out what happens with Josh's cook/sheepherder, Andy, and his lovely Nellie. I can't wait to read, A Love of Her Own (book 3), releasing in June 2010.

If you haven't had a chance to enjoy The Jewel of His Heart, or No Place for a Lady, please be sure to pick up your own copies as soon as you can...you just don't realize what you're missing! Be sure to visit Maggie at her blog: SouthernBelle Writer

~Maggie Brendan herself via Revell Publishing (a division of Baker Publishing Group) provided this book for me to review~




Don't forget to enter my very first blog giveaway! You only have FIVE HOURS left to enter! I'm giving away an AUTOGRAPHED copy of Maggie Brendan's newest release, The Jewel of His Heart...book 2 in her Heart of the West series.

Click here to enter!!

Apology to my Followers and my Blogger friends!!

I just want to say "I'm sorry" for not being around very much these last few days! I've had quite a bit come up unexpectedly that has kept me away from home...and my computer. I hope to resume my normal blogging schedule starting tomorrow. I just want you all to know that I'm not ignoring you, nor have I forgotten you! I hope to get around and read everyone's posts that I've missed, but if I don't make it, please don't be offended!

I hope y'all have had a calmer weekend than I have! Bundle up and stay try to stay warm! I'm looking forward to seeing y'all this week. Love ya! =D


A-Z Wednesday

This really fun book meme is hosted by
Vicki @ Reading at the Beach.

The rules are pretty simple...

1. Visit Vicki to get this week's letter.
2. Browse through your shelves for a book that starts with this week's letter.
3. Post the following info about the book you've chosen on your blog:
~ Photo, synopsis/description, link (Amazon, Christian Books, Borders, etc.)
4. Hurry back to Reading at the Beach and post a comment with a link to your post.

Wow! 'J' was hard for me! I finally found this one:

Just Over the Mountain
(Grace Valley Trilogy, Bk 2)
by Robyn Carr

Book Description:
Welcome back to Grace Valley, California, where the best things in life never change . . .

Here in this peaceful community, folks look out for one another like family, though sometimes a little too well. In a town like this, it's hard to keep a secret -- though Dr. June Hudson has managed to keep one heck of a humdinger . . .

Though visits from her secret lover, undercover DEA agent Jim Post, are as clandestine as they are passionate, somehow it fits with her demanding schedule as the town's doctor -- a calling that requires an innate ability to exist on caffeine, sticks buns and nerves of steel.

But how can a secret lover compete with a flesh-and-blood heartthrob from her past? June's old flame has just returned to town after twenty years -- and he's divorced. June is seriously rattled. So when the town's most devoted wife takes buckshot to her husband and some human bones turn up in her aunt Myrna's backyard, she's almost happy for the distraction.

Sooner or later, love will have its way in Grace Valley. It always does.

I haven't read this series yet, but it sounds really good! =)

A Forever Christmas by Missy Tippens ~ Book Review

A Forever Christmas
(Love Inspired)
by Missy Tippens
Copyright 2009
Pages: 214
Christian Fiction/Inspirational/Romance
ISBN: 9780373875641

Let me start off by saying that this is the first book I've read by Missy Tippens, but it won't be my last! I've got to get my hands on His Forever Love...which actually comes before A Forever Christmas. Also, this is my first Christmas-themed book for 2009 ~ it was a great place to start! Please be sure to have Kleenex nearby when you read this book...you will definitely need them!

A Forever Christmas takes place in the cozy town of Magnolia, Georgia. Here we meet lots of the townsfolk, as they're getting ready for their upcoming Annual Christmas Pageant. Needless to say, the children are very excited to be a part of this year's Pageant! Due to unforeseen complications, the Pageant director has to hand her duties over to someone else this year. This is when we meet Sarah Radcliffe...as she agrees to step in for Donna Rae Durante, and take over with rehearsals, stage props, etc.

Sarah has returned to Magnolia for the Christmas holidays, but she's not looking forward to coming face-to-face with her only true love, Gregory Jones. She lives, and teaches kindergarten, in Nashville, Tennessee, and has come home to spend Christmas with her parents. Her visit started out a little early this year, due to a very heart-breaking event in her life. She hopes to find healing this Christmas season, before she returns to her school children in the new year. She is very mad at God right now, for allowing this event to happen. She can't even talk to him, without ranting and raving!

Gregory Jones has always thought he was beneath Sarah, even when she claimed to love him almost sixteen years ago. He is now the father of two adorable little boys...Hunter is five, and his little brother, Chase, is four. They are both going to have a part in the Christmas Pageant ~ Hunter is a shepherd, while Chase is an angel. Gregory has to depend on his Dad to watch after/take care of his boys, because he's so busy running his business that he doesn't have much extra time to spend with them. He needs to get as many jobs lined as he can, so he will be able to give them the gifts on their Christmas List. What he doesn't realize is...they would rather spend time with him!

This is a very touching Christmas story, and I don't want to reveal too much for fear of ruining it for you. If you look forward to reading Christmas-themed romances every year like I do...you definitely need to add A Forever Christmas to you shopping list...you will not be disappointed!

If you're interested in finding out more about Missy Tippens or purchasing any of her books, please visit her website at: www.missytippens.com

**I would like to thank all of the ladies at Seekerville for giving me the opportunity to read Missy's book. I won it in a giveaway on their blog. I will be passing it on to my sister...who collects Love Inspired romances. Thank you!**



My First Blog Giveaway ~~~ Update!!

**Blog Giveaway Update**

I just wanted to let y'all know that I have a surprise for you! The winner of Maggie Brendan's newest release, The Jewel of His Heart, will now be getting an Author Autographed copy of this book...isn't that awesome?!?!?!

Maggie was at the LifeWay Christian Book Store in Kennesaw, GA this past Saturday. My Mom and I traveled the 1.5 hours to see Maggie, so I could get her to sign my copy...plus the copy I'm giving away!

Just so you know it's authentic...here's Maggie signing it for you...

If you missed Maggie's post on her blog, SouthernBelle Writer, be sure to check it out! She's talking about her book signing at LifeWay's National Fiction Book Event...she even posted a photo of me holding the Autographed copy that I'm giving away! Did you see the yellow sticky note on the cover...that was so I wouldn't get the 2 books mixed up...I wanted to make sure I send the winner the brand new book, not the one I've been reading...even though she personalized my copy. =)

Speaking of which...I finished reading it last night, and it is excellent! I can't wait to post my review during Revell's Blog Tour ~ Oct. 18 - 24 ~ don't forget to come back by and read it.


Another Award!!

Thank you so much to Vicki @ Reading at the Beach
for my second award in a row! It's the
Who Loves You Baby! Award

Here are the rules...

* If you have a blog, post it on your blog with a link back to the site who gave it to you.

* If you don't have a blog but have a website, Facebook, MySpace, Twitter or other type account, post there with a link back.

* Pass this on to 3-10 loyal fans.

* Leave them a comment on their site, email, etc. to let them know.

I would like to pass this awesome award on to...


If it weren't for you...I wouldn't have a blog, so
I want to share the "love" with you all!
Please pick up your award before you leave...

One Lovely Blog Award!!!

Thank you so much to A Reader's Journal for passing along the One Lovely Blog Award to me! I've recently discovered her blog ~ be sure to pay her a visit. I love the fall/autumn blog design...it's just beautiful!

Here are the rules of the "One Lovely Blog Award":

Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link. Pass the award to 15 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.

Diane - The Book Resort
Snowbell - Snowbell Jewelry
E.H. - Erotic Horizon
Keli Gwyn - Joy on the Journey
Cym - Cym Lowell
Mimi - Woven by Words
Brizmus - Brizmus Blogs Books
CeeCee - Book Splurge
Katy - A Few More Pages
Carman - A Sequence of Continuous Delights
Kristen - BookNAround
Zia - My Life in Not So Many Words
Crystal - My Reading Room
Annette - Net's Book Notes
Blanche - No Such Things As Too Many Books

I hope y'all enjoy this award as much as I have! You all have wonderful blogs, that I love visiting. =)


A-Z Wednesday

This really fun book meme is hosted by
Vicki @ Reading at the Beach.

The rules are pretty simple...

1. Visit Vicki to get this week's letter.
2. Browse through your shelves for a book that starts with this week's letter.
3. Post the following info about the book you've chosen on your blog:
~ Photo, synopsis/description, link (Amazon, Christian Books, Borders, etc.)
4. Hurry back to Reading at the Beach and post a comment with a link to your post.

Here's my choice for this week:
In the Company of Secrets
by Judith Miller

The truth could cost her everything.... Olivia Mott didn't intend to lie. Somehow, it just happened. And wasn't it all Lady Charlotte's fault anyway? Now Olivia's position as assistant chef at Pullman's elegant Hotel Florence is dependant upon her keeping her secrets. And sometimes lies have a way of leading to other lies. Should Olivia admit her real past and accept the consequences or keep quiet in order to preserve her comfortable new circumstances? Deception seems to be part of everyday life in the company town of Pullman, Illinois, where the grand Pullman Palace Car is manufactured. Samuel Howard, Olivia's friend and the town manager, seems to think everything is fine, but Olivia observes something quite different. Could it be that Olivia is not the only one harboring secrets?


My Very First Blog Giveaway!!

As most of my followers know, I've only been blogging for a couple
of months, but I'm slowly getting the hang of it! Thank you all for
helping me out along the way ~ your help is greatly appreciated.

That being said ~ I would like to welcome you to my very first
blog giveaway! I'm so happy you've dropped by!
Please be sure to enter my giveaway before you leave.
(Don't forget to read the rules below!)

Okay, okay!! I know...you're anxious to find out exactly what
it is you're entering to win...right???
Well...here it is...

You have a chance to win your very own copy of
Maggie Brendan's newest release:

The Jewel of His Heart
(Heart of the West, Book 2)
by Maggie Brendan
Revell Publishers
Christian Fiction/Historical/Romance
Copyright 2009
333 pages
ISBN: 9780800733506

From Amazon

Their future is as wide open as the Montana sky. Juliana Brady is alone in an 1890s Montana mining town, with few prospects for making a living. But she is determined not to be dependent on the charity of others.

Josh McBride is trying to scrape up a living from his sheep herd while he builds his ranch. But when he discovers some rare stones on his property, he's tempted by the prospect of fast money.

When their paths cross, Juliana and Josh must make a choice--the world's riches and promises, or the eternal value of love.

Now for the Rules:

* You must leave a valid email address in your comment, so I can contact you if you win.
(Example: sugarandgrits{at}hotmail{dot}com)
That way spammers will be less likely to grab it.

* You must have a valid U.S. mailing address

* At this time, the giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.

* The giveaway will start today, Oct 5th, and end on Oct 18th at 11:59 p.m.(EST)
(Any/all entries entered after this time will not be eligible.)

* I will announce the winner here on Oct. 19th ~ you will also be contacted via email. You will then have 48 hours in which to respond with your snail mail address, or another winner will be chosen.

Now ~ on to the fun stuff ~ chances for extra entries!! Please include all of your extra entries in ONE comment...this will make it a lot easier for me to keep up with them!! Thanks! =)

+1 = By becoming a new follower thru Google Friend Connect, on the right sidebar

+2 = Let me know that you're already a follower

+3 = Either post my button(s) on your blog with a link back to me, or, let me know that you already have it/them. If you post both buttons ~ I'll add your name an extra time!

Thank you so much for dropping by and participating!

*** For another chance to win this book, please visit Renee at:
Black 'n Gold Girl's Book Spot
Her contest ends on Oct. 17th ***

If you're interested in finding out more about Maggie Brendan, and her books, please visit her at: http://southernbellewriter.blogspot.com

If you'd like to purchase her book(s), just visit Revell Books.

*** I'd like to say "thank you" to Revell Books for the opportunity to give this book away to the lucky winner! Also ~ be sure to look for my review of The Jewel of His Heart the week of Oct. 18th - 24th ~ during Revell's Blog Tour. ***


Book Review: Love Finds You in Valentine Nebraska by Irene Brand

Love Finds You in Valentine Nebraska
by Irene Brand
(part of the Love Finds You...series)
Summerside Press
Copyright 2008
304 pages / Paperback
ISBN: 9781934770382

After Kennedy Blaine's father dies, she discovers that she has inherited her family's ancestral ranch in Valentine, Nebraska. She decides to see it for herself before she agrees to put it up for sell, even though there is already a buyer waiting in the wings. When Kennedy travels to Valentine to look over the ranch, she meets Derek Sterling, the ranch foreman, and his mother June. When she sees her family's historical home, she falls in love with it and decides to stay through the summer before making her decision.

Once Kennedy moves in, she starts receiving threatening messages telling her to get out and go back to California! She relies on Derek and June's knowledge of the town, and the local townsfolk, for information on who could be behind the threats. However, Kennedy can be a tough gal when she needs to be, and she eventually makes the decision on her own.

Derek tries to protect Kennedy as best he can, with the help of his faithful sidekick Wilson, but parts of his past start coming back to haunt him. Dark secrets that he'd rather keep hidden begin to unravel right before his eyes. There are things that happened in his early teens that he's ashamed of ~ he feels like he is unworthy of forgiveness from others as well as from his Heavenly Father. Derek would rather Kennedy not find out all of his secrets because he's afraid she will go back to California without a backward glance, and he's not sure if/how he'll be able to handle her leaving.

I thoroughly enjoyed Love Finds You in Valentine Nebraska! It was an excellent choice to introduce me to the Love Finds You... series. I thought it was going to be a romance, but there's quite a bit of mystery/suspense involved as well. If you haven't tried any of these books, you should definitely pick up a copy of Love Finds You in Valentine Nebraska ~ you will not be disappointed!

Isn't this cover beautiful? There's Wilson, on the bottom right ~ he's one of my favorite characters in this book! =)

To find out more about Irene Brand, or her other books, please visit her at: www.irenebrand.com.

To order her books, please visit Amazon.com or Christianbook.com

CFRB Tour: If Only You Knew by Mags Storey

If Only You Knew
by Mags Storey

This month, CFRB presents If Only You Knew by Mags Storey.

About the Book:
Jo's summer is off to a good start when she meets Kevin, an amazingly attractive guy, and Sam, her soon-to-be best friend, on the same day. Now she only needs a job, future plans, and a few goals for her life. No big deal, right?

As if that's not enough, Jo would like to know why no talks about the horrible accident she witnessed last summer. But as much as she wants to know the truth, someone else wants to keep it a secret. Can she handle creepy stalkers, death threats, and her crazy love life without losing control?

For Jo, unraveling the mystery and piecing her life together will mean discovering if God really listens ~ and if he cares enough to answer.

About the Author:
Mags Storey is a writer, editor, and journalist. Born in Canada, she spent her childhood living as a missionary in the Middle East before studying journalism at Ryerson in Toronto. She has written for various publications in the UK, USA and Canada, and is currently a correspondent with ChristianWeek. She now lives in Canada with her husband Mike and their two daughters. If Only You Knew is her debut novel.

Purchase If Only You Knew at
Barnes and Noble, Christianbook and Amazon.

Visit Mags's Website.

Check out these other member blogs this week for more info.