Thursday, June 29, 2023

The Boat Trip :a totally addictive murder mystery full of twists by Heather J. Fitt

It's time for another Overview Media book review! 

About the book: 

In a brand-new murder mystery by the author of The Flight, a yacht crosses the North Atlantic while a perfect storm of suspicion and vengeance develops onboard . . .

Duchess is about to set sail from Scotland to St. Lucia. But before she even leaves port, a crew member storms off in anger. It’s only the first in a series of events that will beset Helen, the skipper, her best friend, and the remaining crew.

During a port of call in the Canary Islands, an experienced sailor is found badly beaten onshore. As a replacement, Helen calls in her son—despite objections from her crew who know of his unsavory reputation. Then, a near-fatal allergic reaction raises the tension level—and finally, during a fierce storm, someone goes overboard.

Is this a run of bad luck or is one person at the heart of the turmoil and violence? And if so, can the culprit be identified before they reach the Caribbean?

My Review:

Being trapped on a boat has possibly never been so bad! This crew and this ship seem doomed. The suspense is quite high, while you keep working to find out who's behind the issues happening on The Duchess. A lot of action is going on in this story, as well as on this boat. It reminds me of the mysteries where there's a locked room, but the person is dead, or an escape room puzzle. It was fun to read and very engaging and I learned a lot about sailing that I don't think I knew before! Can you solve who did it before they do and how long until the next H. Fitt book is here? 

5 stars 

About the Author

Heather J. Fitt Author Bio


Heather was born in Scotland and after moving around Europe with her parents and sister, settled in Hampshire where she met her husband, Stuart.


After leaving the rat-race in 2018, Heather re-trained as an editor and proof-reader and entered the world of publishing. These days she works as a part-time freelancer and a part-time Commissioning Advisor for Bloodhound.


Heather was inspired to start writing her novel by the authors who have become her closest friends. Now the ideas are flowing she has plans to write several more over the coming years.


When she isn’t reading, Heather enjoys spending her time watching sport –­ especially her beloved rugby – and exploring the British countryside with Stuart.


For regular bookish updates, you can follow Heather on Twitter: @LifeBookish


Sunday, June 25, 2023

The Pursuit of Miss Parish: A Victorian Harvey Girls Romance by Grace Hitchock (Aprons & Veils Book 2)

About the Book

Book: The Pursuit of Miss Parish

Author: Grace Hitchcock

Genre: Historical Romance

Release date: May 31, 2023

Love’s gentle promise becomes nothing more than a withered dream.

With dreams of love and a hope for belonging, shy Belle Parish leaves her position as a maid in Charleston to travel to New Mexico with her best friend to become mail-order brides. Colt Lawson’s letters hold great promise and while his devilishly handsome face matches his picture, something does not add up. Discovering his lie only moments before they wed, Belle flees the church and straight into the CastaƱeda Hotel Harvey House. Giving up the prospect on ever marrying, she dons her nun-like uniform and focuses on her role as a Harvey Girl waitress until a strong, former Texas Ranger rides into her life.

Colt Lawson didn’t want to send that letter to Belle Parish in the first place, but her first response had all but captured his heart. When he is left standing at the altar alone, he is left with two choices—either release his dream of a love marriage, or attempt to win her heart. Wooing her would be a lot easier if that Texas Ranger wasn’t back in town. Who wants a dusty rancher with a past when she could have a shining knight in a Stetson?


Click here to get your copy!

 My Review:

It's another book where we can learn more about the Harvey Girls. Frankly, they are fascinating and no less so for this story. Belle was lovely, and so hard working. It's romance and a western. I found the story fun to read and it includes Texas Rangers. Making it just perfect, it's a clean read and it's got faith elements that at the end of the book left me smiling. 

5 Stars 

About the Author

Grace Hitchcock is the award-winning author of multiple historical novels and novellas. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing and a Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in History. Grace lives in the New Orleans area with her husband, Dakota, sons, and daughter. Connect with her online at


More from Grace

Questions from READERS for Grace Hitchcock

Q: As a mom, how/when do you find time to write?

Grace Hitchcock: I used to walk around the block to my favorite coffee shop in New Orleans, writing with a delicious latte and scone beside me, headphones in with the perfect soundtrack playing waiting for the muse. . . and now days, I write during Sofia the First episodes blaring in the background for my toddler while the baby sleeps and my Kindergartner is in half-day school.

On the days when I can’t get the word count down during those tiny moments, my husband takes the babies for an hour in the evenings and tells me to go write! When I’m on tight deadline with days left to go, the house usually isn’t the cleanest and Laundry Mountain, in all its splendor, may just fall on top of us. Sometimes while on deadline, I get the urge to pause and clean, but if I ignore the impulse long enough, the feeling generally passes. Once the book is in to my editor, it’s time to clean.

Q: What is your favorite source of inspiration for creating the characters in your stories?

Grace Hitchcock: For main characters, I use Names Through the Ages to figure out their names based on their background and once I know a character’s name, it’s as if the heroine/hero stroll into my writing room and I get to know their personality, the story closely following.

For the supporting characters, I have a need/plot point that they need to fill and I build their personality around that need. Not quite as exciting haha but they serve a purpose. But, I always remind myself to try to fill them out because they do not know they are not the main characters.

Q: When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

Grace Hitchcock: One of my earliest memories is writing stories in my little diary in my closet. (Remember the diaries with the locks on them that were super easy to pick, but still dreamy to have a book with a lock on it.)

I started taking my desire to write seriously when I was a senior in high school. I was homeschooled and my mom let me write a novel for my senior English project to test that theory if I wanted to write. It was so fun to write, I knew that’s what I wanted to do, so I got my Masters in Creative Writing and I’ve been typing away ever since 

Q: What is your writing process like?

Grace Hitchcock: I usually begin with a spark of an idea that I at once research to see if it would work with the eras I enjoy writing (Gilded Age and Regency England). From there, I do a deep dive into writing out a chapter by chapter plot, which generally takes about a week to ten days.

Once I have my plot down, I do about a week or two more of basic research and begin the first very, very rough draft that I usually finish at 50,000 words after 3 months of writing.


Then, I research any spots that needed improving in the first draft and go full editing mode, pausing throughout the book to research spots that need more description and historical accuracy, which is about two months and then, I do a third round of edits and research while doing a line edit, which takes a month.


By the time I get to the 6-month mark, I am more than ready to have a break haha and I send my 75,000/80,000 word novel off to my publisher/editor who does a content edit, sends it back to me for three weeks, another editor does a line edit, sends it back to me for three weeks, then another editor does a copy edit and sends it to galleys (where they format the book) and send it back to me to proof one last time for two weeks! Then, it goes to press at usually 75,000-100,000 depending on the novel. So long story short, 6 months to write and about 2 months to edit!

Q: Do you have any tips for aspiring authors? 

Grace Hitchcock: In this business, just about every author gets a rejection from a publisher . . . even by publishers who later accept them!

When I began sending out one of my first manuscripts, I thought it was pristine, but after about 15 rejections, I put it on the shelf and focused on a new manuscript with fresh eyes and new goals based on some of the industry professionals’ suggestions. Six months after I shelved that first manuscript, I went back and looked over it . . . the professionals were right. It wasn’t ready and it would require a lot more love (aka bleeding edits) before I attempted to send it out again. Sometimes, time is what you need to get a fresh perspective.

But it is also important to remember that when you get a rejection letter, they are not rejecting you. They are rejecting the work. And as much as you see it as a work of art, the publishers see it as a product. They are there to sell a product and if the product isn’t ready, it won’t sell well, so take heart and “hone your craft” and focus on any feedback you received that has merit.

That critique was very hard for me to hear haha but it helped push me to keep learning, attending writer conferences, and following my dreams. Over the years, I have had novels rejected by Barbour, Bethany, and Kregel, but I tried again and again and eventually signed with each publishing house! So keep it up! You can do it!

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions , June 16

Vicky Sluiter, June 16

Melissa’s Bookshelf, June 17

She Lives To Read, June 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 18

Texas Book-aholic, June 19

Alena Mentink, June 19

All-of-a-kind Mom, June 20

Bigreadersite, June 20

Connie’s History Classroom, June 21

Books You Can Feel Good About, June 21

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, June 22

Betti Mace, June 23

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 23

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 24

Karen Baney Reviews, June 24

Blogging With Carol, June 25

For Him and My Family, June 25

Labor Not in Vain, June 26

Mary Hake, June 26

Cover Lover Book Review, June 27

Holly’s Book Corner, June 27

Splashes of Joy, June 28

Pause for Tales, June 28

Jodie Wolfe -Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, June 29

Lights in a Dark World, June 29


To celebrate her tour, Grace is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of The Finding of Miss Fairfield AND The Pursuit of Miss Parish with bookmarks and book magnets, and a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

Saturday, June 24, 2023

A Not So Peaceful Journey by Sandra Merville Hart (Second Chances Book 3)


About the Book

Book: A Not So Peaceful Journey

Author: Sandra Merville Hart

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release date: June 13, 2023

Dreams of adventure send him across the country. She prefers to keep her feet firmly planted in Ohio. 

Rennie Hill has no illusions about the hardships in life, which is why it’s so important her beau, John Welch, keeps his secure job with the newspaper. Though he hopes to write fiction, the unsteady pay would mean an end to their plans, wouldn’t it?

John Welch dreams of adventure worthy of storybooks, like Mark Twain, and when two of his short stories are published, he sees it as a sign of future success. But while he’s dreaming big with his head in the clouds, his girl has her feet firmly planted, and he can’t help wondering if she really believes in him.

When Rennie must escort a little girl to her parents’ home in San Francisco, John is forced to alter his plans to travel across the country with them. But the journey proves far more adventurous than either of them expect.


Click here to get your copy!

 My Review:

Set in the 1800's, this book is much easier to connect to than you'd have thought! Opposites attract, but after time, then what? When do the issues that make us opposites get to be too much? Rennie is a dear thing, very practical and her opposite is John. His head is in the clouds, and she's firmly rooted. Events work around to the point that Rennie and her sister need to travel with a child, and so John joins them to help. What happens next, is jaw dropping. This is not at all the trip anyone imagined! Even with the dram and stress of what they go through, it was lovely to see God work and watch these characters grow. I enjoyed this historic setting and the reminder of God's care of us. 

5 Stars 

About the Author

Sandra Merville Hart, award-winning and Amazon bestselling author of inspirational historical romances, loves to discover little-known yet fascinating facts from American history to include in her stories. Her desire is to transport her readers back in time. She is also a blogger, speaker, and conference teacher. Connect with Sandra on her blog,


More from Sandra

It was fun to invite readers on this book’s journey!

To those who lived in the 1880s, venturing into this newly-settled and largely-unsettled West had become much safer—though not without danger—with the system of railroads already in place. I enjoyed taking readers to Chicago, Omaha, Oakland, Ogden, and Sacramento, as well as frontier towns along the journey such as Cheyenne.

Our heroine is a telegraph operator. She temporarily leaves her job to escort a little girl to her ailing mother in San Francisco.

My research about telegraph jobs taught me quite a bit of terminology.

For example, a clatter arises when another operator “calls.” The call begins with something like “B m—X n”, which means the B m is the station receiving the call and X n is the caller.

B m must signal a reply that she’s ready to receive the call.

The Sounder receives sounds of the alphabet in dots and dashes. Some operators sent messages too rapidly to understand. When this occurs, the receiving operating asks for it again with a Break (she opens her “key” to break the circuit) and interrupts with “Please repeat.”

“G.A. the—” means “Go ahead” and “the” was the last word she understood. 

Operators end every message with his/her own private “call” as well as the office’s call and “O.K.” at the end of each message.

Wired Love, which was written by telegraph operator Ella Cheever Thayer in 1879, provided many insights about the job’s daily tasks.

One of them was the lack of privacy on the lines. She can hear the messages sent to other wires but only offices on the same wire. In Wired Love, operators heard messages sent to and from twenty offices.

By the way, the public grew so fascinated with the role of women in telegraphy that it became the topic of romance novels and short stories, creating a new genre called “telegraphic romance” in the latter 1800s. That’s a little-known fun fact for you!

I enjoyed writing this series. I invite you to read the whole “Second Chances” series beginning with A Not So Convenient Marriage, Book 1, A Not So Persistent Suitor, Book 2, and A Not So Peaceful JourneyBook 3.

Blog Stops

lakesidelivingsite, June 14

Alena Mentink, June 14

Betti Mace, June 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 16

Texas Book-aholic, June 17

Karen Baney Reviews, June 17

Connie’s History Classroom, June 18

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 19

For Him and My Family, June 20

Lily’s Book Reviews, June 20

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 21

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions , June 22

Mary Hake, June 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 23

Blogging With Carol, June 24

Blossoms and Blessings, June 24

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

Cover Lover Book Review, June 26

Pause for Tales, June 27

Holly’s Book Corner, June 27


To celebrate her tour, Sandra is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

Relinquished by Susan K. Beatty (Faces of Courage Book 3)


About the Book

Book: Relinquished

Author: Susan K. Beatty

Genre: Christian Woman’s Fiction

Release date: May 16, 2023

No one takes her kid and gets away with it.

When Teagan Parsons discovers that the Amber Alert on a celebrity couple’s child is actually her daughter, she’s determined to rescue the daughter she relinquished years ago. If she’d only realized the emotions her mission would rekindle…

Having a cousin in the FBI gets her closer to the case than she could have dreamed, but instead of listening to the lead FBI agent’s warnings to “leave the job to the professionals,” Teagan begins following everyone she suspects. That old saying, “Don’t quit your day job,” has never been truer, but she’ll do whatever it takes to bring her daughter home safe.

Mitch McCartney has enough trouble on his hands without dealing with a guilt-ridden, biological mother bent on making up for past sins. Teagan seems to have developed a talent for getting things wrong and putting herself in danger. Oh… and she’s adding theft to her rap sheet—theft of his heart, anyway.

Then Teagan goes missing.

Learning you can’t undo the past is a tough enough lesson without adding on more mistakes, but with Mitch’s help, Teagan may, with the Lord’s Guidance, forge a brighter future this time.


Click here to get your copy!

 My Review:

Having given up her baby at birth, Teagan is freaked out when she sees an Amber Alert for a missing child that looks like it could be hers. It pulls her soul so deeply! Even when the child isn't hers, Teagan is now on a mission to save this missing girl. It gets deeper because Teagan's cousin is FBI and just so happens, is working the case for this little girl. From here, the emotions and the story is so griping you might not hear anything else happening where ever you are. Faith isn't left out and this story at all, it's actually pretty deeply interwoven and this book has so many, many emotions. Healing is a strong theme, as well as second chances. 

5 BIG Stars 

About the Author

Susan K. Beatty is in her third career—from journalist to homeschool tech writer to her life-long dream of becoming a novelist. She is proof you can start a new writing career late in life. Susan released her first published fiction in September 2019, and now an awarding winner author, this is her third novel, with several novelettes and short stories to her credit. She is passionate about finding courage through faith and grit. Susan lives with her husband of forty-nine years in Southern California. Add children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren to the mix and she has little time for her favorite hobbies of reading, watching classic movies, British crime dramas, and traveling.


More from Susan

The seeds of a story sometimes lay dormant in an author for years. Then they grow and grab the author, demanding to be told. Until eventually the author gives in.

In my case, I didn’t have to give in. I knew I would write some version of the story eventually.

It began in 1968, when I was young, unmarried, and pregnant. It continued through 1969 when I gave my child up for adoption. Of course, any birth mother will tell you the actual story doesn’t end there.

After I became a Christian in 1973, I grew into a better understanding of my journey. New emotions had to be dealt with when my daughter and I were reunited in 1988 when she was nineteen. We enjoyed getting to know each other despite our differences in faith, but those lost years could not be regained—another set of emotions to come to terms with.

I couldn’t write our story, but I wanted to write something that revealed the emotional dilemma birth mothers wrestle with: forgiveness, regret, accepting that one won’t take part in the baby’s childhood, and, if there is a reunion, accepting a new reality. This usually means discovering, despite a newfound relationship, the birth mother will never be that child’s mom.

But I also wanted to show God’s grace, healing, and a hope for a future (including the addition of light romance).

Not wanting the book to get weighed down in maudlin narrative, I tried to lift it above the muck and show the birth mother’s strength and courage. What better way to do that than throw her in the middle of a dangerous, life-threatening situation?

Note to birth mothers: If you have unresolved issues, there may be triggers in Relinquished. I urge you to spend time in prayer and allow the Lord to heal you regardless of whether you read the book. And, if you need it, there is no shame in getting counseling.

Note to adoptive mothers: I hope you get a glimpse into the other side of the story.

Note to all readers: Praying the Lord shines through Teagan’s story to illuminate your heart.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 13

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, June 14

Texas Book-aholic, June 15

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, June 16 (Author Interview)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, June 17

An Author’s Take, June 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 19

Artistic Nobody, June 20 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, June 21

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, June 22

Guild Master, June 23 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, June 23

Blogging With Carol, June 24

For Him and My Family, June 25

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, June 26 (Author Interview)


To celebrate her tour, Susan is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and 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.