Thursday, April 27, 2017

A Spring of Weddings by Toni Shiloh and Melissa Wardwell

a spring of weddings copy
Click here to purchase your copy

My Review:

I think this is the first thing I've ready by Shiloh. The first story is cute. It's a about a proxy wedding. That is something I already knew about, so I wasn't surprised at the premise. The story unfolded about like I thought it would, but it's still cute enough. 

The second story was fun, and snuggly, and made me want to cuddle up with my sweetheart. It's full of romance. While very opposite of each other in all kinds of ways, the things that matter the most are united in this sweet story of Hope beyond Savannah. I've read more than one book by Wardwell, and this author's writing style is really growing on me. 

These two enjoyable stories make for a fun, romantic read that will have you dreaming of spring weddings as well as God's love in a romance. 

About the Book 

A Spring of Weddings
Book: A Spring of Weddings: A Contemporary Spring Weddings Collection
Authors: Toni Shiloh & Melissa Wardwell,
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Release Date: March 30, 2017
A Proxy Wedding
Carly James values loyalty and friendship above all, so when her best friend calls asking her to be a proxy bride, she says, ‘yes.’ How hard can it be to say ‘I do’ so that her best friend can be with the one she loves? Only, Carly never counted on the feelings that began to swirl around with the proxy groom.
Damien Nichols likes life lined up from A to Z, but when his best friend calls in a favor, disorder begins to reign. Instead of taking a quick flight to the proxy wedding, he must take a road trip with the proxy bride. Carly’s free-spirit attitude bumps heads with his meticulous approach to life. As Damien discovers the woman underneath the carefree fa├žade, his emotions become involved.
Will love become real at A Proxy Wedding?

Hope Beyond Savannah
Lily Allman and Nikotemo (Nik) Lagatuo were the poster children for the term “opposites attract.” He was an evangelist and CEO for a non-profit from Samoa who grew up in a large loving family. She was a blond bombshell with a funky style and no family to call her own. Two of the most unlikely people meet in the most unlikely of places, but God had a plan when He brought them together. They never let their differences deter them from the love they had for each other, but when Nik’s mother comes to the States for the wedding, the idea of wedded bliss is shaken. Can prejudices be over looked, insecurities overcome, and hope for a better future be restored so that these two can have all that was promised?

About the Authors

SONY DSC
Toni Shiloh is a wife, mom, and Christian fiction writer. Once she understood the powerful saving grace thanks to the love of Christ, she was moved to honor her Savior. She writes to bring Him glory and to learn more about His goodness.

MWardwell-4Melissa Wardwell was born and raised in a small mid-Michigan community living there still with her Husband and three children. She enjoys taking pictures, reading, and leisurely rides with her husband on their motorcycle. All her stories revolve around women who are mothers. Single mothers, widowed mothers, young mothers, married mothers, and even women who have a mother’s heart but no children of her own.
Her hope is that each story touches your heart, gives you hope, or just gives you a moment away from the chaos of life.

Guest posts from Toni & Melissa

A Proxy Wedding
By Toni Shiloh
Spring is here! I love it because I always think of new beginnings as the flowers bud and then bloom. The trials and tribulation of the winter season are no longer on my mind. My hope that the winter season would not linger begins to become visible as new life takes shape on the bare trees. The seeds I planted in faith of God’s faithfulness sprout up in hope and promise.
When I sat down to write A Proxy Wedding, I had to imagine spring time, because the dreary, overcast skies outside my window were a constant reminder that I was in a season of sickness. One person would get sick, then the next, and the next. By the time the last person got sick, the round would start over. Visits to the doctor were made. Miserable kids were constantly whining in their discomfort.
It. Was. Rough.
It made perfect sense for me to throw my characters into a new situation. One that would make the stretch, take them out their comfort zone, and search for God’s goodness. I wanted to give them a hint of goodness and throw in a trial or two so they could make the decision that sometimes, risk is worth it. Just as we all react differently to new situations, so did my characters.
Carly was intent on making lemonade from her lemons. She tries to get the handsome broker, Damien, to see the importance of smelling roses and lingering over new adventures. Of course, Damien wasn’t partial to the frivolity. He’s so intent on becoming a success that he had no time to slow down.
In order for them to see God’s handiwork in their lives, I had to remind them that they were not products of their past. That in God, they’re a new creation with new opportunities available to them.
I hope you enjoy A Proxy Wedding. May you think of the Father’s love as you take time to stop and smell the roses.
Hope Beyond Savannah
By Melissa Wardwell
I hope you enjoy this story of love, acceptance and new beginnings. It was a joy to write because there is much more to it than the hope of marriage. It is about the blending of two families who are from two completely different cultures. Researching the island traditions, beliefs, and customs was not only fun, but enlightening. Being able to return to my background in bridal as well as the most beautiful city in the United States was just an added bonus.
With Nik and his family being from another country, I gave you a glossary of words and phrases used so you knew what was being said. I found the language to be rather beautiful and to not include it would take away from who these people are. I also give a small explanation as to what Rock-a- billy is. Lily is a funky chick who dresses in a fun and exciting way. When I saw this couple in my head, I knew it would be quite the uncommon match. As you will soon see, they fit together quite nicely.
My point in using a bi-racial couple for this story was based on what we have been seeing in the news lately. It is unlike anything I have ever done but after talking to friends in similar relationships, I knew I had to step out on this limb. I think it is time we begin to look at people through the eyes of God and not man, then we would see how beautiful we all are. It doesn’t matter what color our skin is or what our past contains, we are all God’s creation and we are beautifully and wonderfully made.

Blog Stops

April 25: Lighthouse Academy
April 28: Mary Hake
April 29: The Power of Words (Spotlight)
May 1: Quiet Quilter
May 4: A Greater Yes
May 5: Carpe Diem
May 7: God is Love
May 8: Autism mom

Giveaway

57d0847a-6195-4a0e-ba9e-5988cf1db2d8
To celebrate the tour, Celebrate Lit Publishing is giving away a Kindle! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/b614

Friday, April 21, 2017

Witch by Denise Weimer

witch FB cover
Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book


COVER-WITCH._72RGB (002)
Click to Purchase

Book: Witch
Author: Denise Weimer
Genre: Modern romantic light suspense with a historical back story
Release Date: April 1, 2017
The Restoration Trilogy: When Jennifer Rushmore accepts a brooding bachelor’s job offer to act as coordinator for the restoration of his family’s historic doctor’s house (WHITE), apothecary (WIDOW) and log cabin (WITCH) in a rural Georgia community, little does she know it’s her own heart that will undergo the greatest renovation. Three stories. Three centuries. Three lessons on the healing of the heart. And one buried mystery that threatens their redemption.
WITCH, Book Three: Having restored Michael Johnson’s ancestors’ house and apothecary shop and begun applying the lessons of family and forgiveness unearthed from the past, Jennifer Rushmore expects to complete her first preservation job with the simple relocation of a log home. But as her crew reconstructs the 1787 cabin, home to the first Dunham doctor, attacks on those involved throw suspicion on neighbors and friends alike. And while Jennifer has trusted God and Michael with the pain of her past, it appears Michael’s been keeping his own secrets. Will she use a dream job offer from Savannah as an escape, or will a haunting tale from a Colonial diary convince her to rely on the faithfulness of his love?

My Review:
This series interweaves a gripping story from the past, that is a novel in and of it's own, pulled forward into the current time frame. Jennifer Rushmore is the main person who is working to restore several major buildings on an history fourteen acre property. In each book, history of the past events, history of the current people involved, and major life lessons and events unfold. 

In Witch, Jennifer and Micheal have come a long way from when they started this project. Two major buildings have been completed. The rich history about this property that is part of Micheal's heritage has been worked through. Jennifer has grown and changed so nicely, and now Micheal has to deal with his past that he has been hiding. I deeply appreciate the Southern aspects of this book, and this series. Being a Southern gal, I also can't help but be thrilled with the entire restoration of historical properties and buildings that are rich with history. Faithfulness is the focus of this book, and it shows in each major challenge that is overcome. God's faithfulness. Our character's faithfulness in the face of danger and obstacles is evident as you read. This is a strong book, and an even stronger series that I found to be enriching in many ways.   

About the Author 

2016headshotDENISE WEIMER holds a journalism degree with a minor in history from Asbury University. A former magazine writer, she is the author of romantic novella REDEEMING GRACE, The Georgia Gold Series (SAUTEE SHADOWS, THE GRAY DIVIDE, THE CRIMSON BLOOM, and BRIGHT AS GOLD – winner of the 2015 John Esten Cooke Award for outstanding Southern literature) and The Restoration Trilogy (WHITE, WIDOW and WITCH). Denise is a wife and swim mom of two daughters who always pauses for old houses, coffee and chocolate!

Guest post from Denise Weimer

The first thing I want to tell you about Witch is … it’s not scary! Hang with me, and I’ll share more about the title.
The Restoration Trilogy mixes a unique tonic … the budding of a romance and friendships in a humorous, small-town community, a splash of suspense, and spiritual and emotional healing. When Jennifer Rushmore accepts a brooding bachelor’s job offer to act as coordinator for the restoration of his family’s historic doctor’s house (White), apothecary (Widow) and log cabin (Witch) in a rural Georgia community, little does she know it’s her own heart that will undergo the greatest renovation. Three stories. Three centuries. Three lessons on the healing of the heart. And one buried mystery that threatens their redemption.
Having restored Michael Johnson’s ancestors’ house and apothecary shop and begun applying the lessons of family and forgiveness unearthed from the past, Jennifer expects to complete her first preservation job with the simple relocation of a log home. But as her crew reconstructs the 1787 cabin, home to the first Dunham doctor, attacks on those involved throw suspicion on neighbors and friends alike. And while Jennifer has trusted God and Michael with the pain of her past, it appears Michael’s been keeping his own secrets. Will she use a dream job offer from Savannah as an escape, or will a haunting tale from a Colonial diary convince her to rely on the faithfulness of his love?
The restoration my parents did on a real life doctor’s house and apothecary shop inspired this series. As I watched them work and learn about the historical line of doctors associated with their property, I realized how much a physical restoration project can mirror the spiritual work God wants to do in each of us. And that’s exactly what happens with Michael and Jennifer, who both conceal areas of brokenness from their pasts. As they come together to restore his family buildings, the stories they uncover about his ancestors reveal truths they need to apply in their own lives:
  • Family connection from the 1920s story of Georgia Pearl as they restore the house (White)
  • Forgiveness from the 1860s story of Charlotte as they restore the apothecary (Widow)
  • Faithfulness from the 1780s story of Verity as they restore the log cabin (Witch)
The title of each novel – and the cover – reflects that struggle of the historical heroine. Eventually each, as well as Michael and Jennifer, learn that only God, the Master Renovator and the Great Physician, can heal their broken places.
So here’s your prescription, should you choose to accept it by entering into this grand prize giveaway!
Grand Prize Gift Basket From Durham Apothecary &; Museum: Take from a homemade tea pocket one of the selection of special teas. While brewing thy favorite tea, dispense liberally from the tea cookie tin onto a china plate. Prop up thy feet and commence thy reading journey through a print copy of WhiteWidow AND Witch! After a goodly time of rest and reflection, take up thy quill (ahem, I mean set of decorative pens) and record pearls of wisdom in thy new journal. When they husband and children begin to grumble, rise with fresh vigor to prepare a meal from Farmer’s Almanac Colonial Cookbook.
Second place prize: an e-book copy of Witch (or any other one book of The Restoration Trilogy)

Blog Stops

April 21: A Greater Yes
April 26: Artistic Nobody
April 28: Pause for Tales
April 29: Bigreadersite

Giveaway

3dccdfbd-45bb-468e-8f53-47dd1563cf93
To celebrate her tour, Denise is giving away:
A Grand Prize Gift Basket From Durham Apothecary & Museum: Take from a homemade tea pocket one of the selection of special teas. While brewing thy favorite tea, dispense liberally from the tea cookie tin onto a china plate. Prop up thy feet and commence thy reading journey through a print copy of White, Widow AND Witch! After a goodly time of rest and reflection, take up thy quill (ahem, I mean set of decorative pens) and record pearls of wisdom in thy new journal. When thy husband and children begin to grumble, rise with fresh vigor to prepare a meal from Farmer’s Almanac Colonial Cookbook.
Second place prize: an e-book copy of Witch (or any other one book of The Restoration Trilogy)
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/b57b

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Finding Hope In Savannah by Melissa Wardwell

Finding Hope in Savannah FB CoverClick here to purchase your copy.

About the Book



Finding Hope in Savannah_KINDLE (1)
Click to purchase

Book: Finding Hope in Savannah
Author: Melissa Wardwell
Genre: Christian Suspense/Romance
Release Date: September 15, 2016
Elizabeth “Liz” Thompson liked her quiet, predictable life with her son. When she witnesses something horrifying and dangerous, they are forced into hiding. She seeks refuge in the small community of Isle of Hope, Georgia only to find that her life and her heart are still hanging in the balance.
Officer Jake Andrews, dedicated his life to protect and serve the people of Savannah. In the back of his mind always wondering “what if?”. The arrival of a young woman from his past forces him to face a long-buried secret, that will change how he sees his future.
As danger comes to Georgia, Liz & Jake must learn to trust God and each other, to see their way out of the situation.

My Review:

Liz's parents died, throwing her into a period of anger and running from God. She met a man and their one night together left her with a child. Liz doesn't make wise decisions with men, and the next fellow wasn't what she needed either, nor what was good for her son. Running away from danger with her 13 year old, she winds up where his father is. Ah! This is interesting on many levels. Liz, Jake and Matt are all very realistic and I appreciate that in a book. 

The book theme, wrapped up in everything else happening, is forgiveness and that God never fails us. He has a plan, and He is ever faithful, ever loving. A great message is tucked inside this story of hope that was found again, in Savannah. I also liked that it was a in Ga. as I'm well acquainted with that state. It made the story more in-depth for me. 

I find it so nice when I find an author that writes books that I enjoy. This isn't my first book by this a author, and hopefully isn't my last.


About the Author 

MWardwell-4Melissa resides in a small mid-Michigan farm community with her husband and three children, all of whom they home school. Besides writing, she enjoys reading, taking photos, and motorcycle rides with her husband. Her hope is that each story touches your heart, gives you hope, or just gives you a moment away from the chaos of life

Guest Post from Melissa Wardwell

Finding myself though “Finding Hope in Savannah”
SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES
Writing this book opened my eyes to quite a few things about myself. It opened a door to a need to discover new places and try new things. To step outside of my shell and not be afraid to discover what I am capable of as a wife, mother, and a Christian Woman. In one scene, I have “Liz” talking about how she wishes she could be brave enough to face things without being so fearful of the outcome. I was reminded that when we are moving in Christ’s will for our lives, there is nothing to fear. (Insert image of Woman on top of the fountain)
When I came up with the idea for “Finding Hope in Savannah” I wanted a location that was unlike any place I have ever been. All my other books take place in my area. So, I set out to find images of some place warm and southern. I came across images of this little community on the outskirts of Savannah Georgia called Isle of Hope. I loved the looks of this little haven so much, I made it the location of this book.
Vaca 2015 (190)2Writing the descriptions on the location was a bit of a stretch of my imagination. I hadn’t seen it, smelled it, or touched it in any way. The writing of this book just so happened to be the same year as when our family would be driving to Florida for a family vacation. After expressing my frustration in not getting the feel of the place right, my darling husband suggested leaving a bit earlier and spending some time in Savannah on the way down. I am so glad we did and I discovered for myself why it is considered the most beautiful city in the United States.
This book isn’t just a love story or a story about a woman in hiding, but about a single mother of a tween boy who is trying her best to find her way in this world. Having two teen boys of my own I know how fun, as well as gross, boys can be but to get the right mind set for “Liz” I had to do some homework. It took watching and talking to my friends who are single mothers, hear their concerns about life and managing their time. I admire those who have to play both roles every day and still have a smile on their faces. With my husband’s job, I am on my own with the kids part of the time, but it is only part time. I couldn’t imagine raising my three all by myself. My hats off to all the single mommies of the world.

Blog Stops

April 11: A Greater Yes
April 12: Bigreadersite 
April 14: Carpe Diem
April 15: my site/autism mom
April 16: Quiet Quilter

Giveaway

e5f4939d-cd96-45de-b748-8fb15bc1a0af
To celebrate her tour, Melissa is giving away one print copy of “Finding Hope in Savannah” as well as a $10 Amazon gift card!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/b2b9

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Just the Way You Are by Pepper Basham


Just the way you are FB cover
Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book


IMG_5776
Click to purchase
Book: Just the Way You Are
Author: Pepper Basham
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Single mom, Eisley Barrett, prefers to keep romance safely housed within a centuries-old mystery, but when she travels to England to unearth the secret, an actor with a sordid past offers her reluctant heart a very different type of discovery.
                
Wes Harrison has a past he’s ashamed to confess. Suspicious and cynical, he’s managed to avoid romantic entanglements since a tragedy upended his career and life, that is until American Eisley Barrett comes along. Her authenticity and kindness upend his bitter assumptions and send his heart into unscripted territory.
When his past threatens to ruin a second chance at love, can some Appalachian matchmaking and letters from the grace salvage their unexpected romance?

My Review

With the first chapter I was happily carried away with this book. I think it started for me when Eisley physically fell over Mr. H. after arriving in England. That was so realistic and her reactions to the famous Wes sits really close to home. This book is fun, cute, romantic, and a pleasure to read. I love the mystery parts. Wes and Eisley are a fun pair, but all the characters are strong ones in this book. The contrast with North Carolina was lots of fun as well. I had a wonderful time reading this book, and I highly recommend it for a fun, happy, heart-felt read. 


About the Author  

PepperquiltPepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes novels inspired by her love for history and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Her Penned in Time series has garnered recognition in the Inspys, Grace Awards, and the ACFW Carol Awards. Her contemporary romance novel, A Twist of Faith, received 4-stars from Romantic Times, and most recently, her newest release, The Thorn Healer, received a Top Pick from RT with 4 ½ stars. Her newest contemporary romance, Just the Way You Are, releases in April 2016. You can get to know Pepper on Facebook, or over at her group blog, The Writer’s Alley, or Instagram

Guest post from Pepper Basham

Thank you so much for featuring my newest novel,  Just the Way You Are, on CelebrateLit. I am THRILLED to be a part of this and to share a story that is very dear to my heart.
Just the Way You Are is my first ‘true’ Britallachian romantic comedy. Even though I’ve written comedy in some of my other novels and included elements of both Appalachia and Britain, this one embodies the tag #britallachian to the core. For those of you who’ve read some of my previous books, you know I’m a big fan of my native Blue Ridge Mountains and the Appalachian culture. You may also know that I’m a proud Anglophile.
Those two loves met in Just the Way You Are – and I tossed lots of other things I love best into the mix. What are those ingredients, you might ask?
Well, let me just tell ya! Just the Way You Are is a blend of Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian culture, big (hilarious) family dynamics, matchmaking, Britain, a swoony English hero, a quirky, magnanimous heroine, a bunch of adorable kids, Scooby Doo and Indiana Jones references, lots of humor, a historical mystery, a devious villainess, stately manor houses, secret rooms, love letters, and matchmaking all rolled into one…oh, and did I mention brain-numbing romance?
(Did anyone else feel the need to add “fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, miracles, true love….” From the Princess Bride?) J I don’t think I included torture, giants, or monsters in Just the Way You Are…but I may have the other elements in this novel J
Okay, maybe I’m exaggerating about the brain-numbing, but I do have a tendency to err on the side of overly dramatic J
Within the pages of Just the Way You Are, you’ll meet people from my own family, people from my imagination, and some people who stepped into the story without one ounce of my planning to ever meet them. This story came out of my desire to write something I love reading – spicy romance, clean humor, culture clashes, the big love of family, and redemption.
How did my heroine Eisley Barrett evolve? Out of thin air. I was washing dishes one afternoon and staring out the window into our small backyard with the Blue Ridge Mountains painting a purplish-blue frame on the horizon when I closed my eyes. Into my imagination came this ginger-headed woman walking through Heathrow International Airport pulling a hot pink bag behind her…and then, she tripped and fell. That was it. That’s how I was introduced to my insecure, hilarious, romance-loving, single-mom heroine.
And the dashing hero? Okay, this may sound ridiculous, but I was watching an interview about Richard Armitage (Thoron Oakenshield, Guy of Gisborne, etc) regarding his lovely costume drama North and South where he plays a very dashing British hero. Anyway, he was SUCH a gentleman to watch during the interview. So polite. Kind. Funny, in a sweet way, and then, out of the blue, he said the word ‘gosh’. I know, that may not be a big deal to anyone but me, but after watching celebrity interviews where every other word needed a censor, the very fact that this elegant man used the word ‘gosh’, sent my writing brain into motion. My first internal question? What if a movie star with a tender heart had been burned by the pretension and expectation of celebrity status? What kind of woman could touch a heart who’d lost his faith in love’s authenticity?
Enter my red-head single-mom toting her pink bag through Heathrow and you have the very beginning of Just the Way You Are – a story of forgiveness, second chances…and a little bit of movie magic.

Blog Stops

April 6: cherylbbookblog
April 8: Bookworm Mama
April 9: Quiet Quilter
April 10: Faithfully Bookish
April 10: Back Porch Reads 
April 11: Robin’s Nest
April 13: Cordially Barbara
April 14: A Greater Yes
April 15: Just Commonly
April 15: 100 Pages per Hour
April 16: Book by Book
April 17: Splashes of Joy
April 18: Karen Sue Hadley
April 19: Henry Happens
April 19: Baker Kella

Giveaway