Thursday, April 24, 2014

Patriot's Heart by Penelope Marzec


She'll risk everything to save him...

Agnes, a blacksmith, runs the forge while her father fights in the Continental Army. The morning after the Battle of Monmouth, she discovers a wounded British soldier in her barn. Despite the risk, she vows to heal him as she believes a good Samaritan should. Edwin, third son of the Duke of Dalfour, was supposed to become a barrister. He opted to run away and join the army. Shot on a mission to deliver the general’s message, he wakes in Agnes’s barn unaware of how he got there and missing his horse. If he is caught, he could be hung, but Loyalists are also searching for British deserters. If anyone discovers he is the son of the Duke, he is doomed. Agnes tells everyone Edwin is her mother’s cousin, but she soon finds herself falling in love with him. When Loyalists kidnap her sister, Edwin vows to bring the child back from the British held camp. Can Agnes trust him? Or is he using her sister as an excuse to return to his company? Will Agnes ever see her sister again? And will Edwin break her heart?


My Review:

            Agnes McGowan steps in to run the forge her father operates while he and her uncle serve in The Continental Army. Squelching her own fears when she finds a wounded British soldier in her barn, she believes it is her duty to heal him.
            The soldier, Edwin, has run from a domineering father in England and a family where he feels like he’ll never measure up to their demanding standards. Edwin doesn't tell Agnes he’s the son of a Duke.

            Agnes passes Edwin off as her cousin as her own mother who died when Agnes was younger had come from England. As Edwin heals, harrowing events happen as the war rages. Edwin, Agnes and her entire family find themselves in danger, he as a harbored soldier and she as a traitor.  When Agnes’ precocious sister, Margaret, disappears along with the family pet pig, Jonas, Agnes vows to search for her. Edwin takes her up river to Sandy Hook and sees this as his chance to get back to his military services or even go home to the life he ran from.

            Has hoped been dashed for the newly kindled love they both realize they've developed while their world is unsettled by war and oppression?

           Penelope Marzec presents and exciting read and a well-painted look back into our history. There are definite page turning sections as well as an emotionally wrenching look at the fear and confusion that must have been felt during this tumultuous time.


More about Penelope Marzec:  http://penelopemarzec.weebly.com/

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Meet Paula Mowery

I've enjoyed getting to know Paula over the past year. She did the editing on The Tempering Agent and I appreciated her expertise while working with her.

She is a pastor’s wife and a former homeschool mom. Paula has always been an avid reader of Christian fiction. She began writing in the area of nonfiction creating three Bible studies which were self-published. However, she crafted fiction stories which she shared with friends and family. When one of her readers encouraged her to pursue publication, she joined American Christian Fiction Writers, learning more about the world of fiction. Her debut work of fiction is a novella published by Harbourlight, a division of Pelican Book Group, The Blessing Seer.

Her debut novella, The Blessing Seer  came out July 6, 2012 from Pelican Book Group. The sequel, Be the Blessing, released Sept. 13, 2013. Her story, Forgiven, is in the anthology, Brave New Century which released Nov. 13, 2013 from Prism Book Group. This book appeared on Amazon's Top 100 Bestsellers in Religious Historical Fiction.

Her latest book, Legacy and Love was released March 2014.

This book is the compilation of two stories:  

The Prayer Shawl 

Sean Holland is a magazine reporter always looking for the next story. Hope Weaver is a pediatric nurse who shares Christ through making prayer shawls. The shawls are just the touchy-feely story Sean needs, even though he’ll have to endure Hope’s strong Christian beliefs to get it. An unexpected connection brings them together as a couple. But, can they find love if they don’t share their faith? 

Inheritance 

Alex Lyndon’s life has been a series of fits and starts with no finishes. She finds herself jobless and divorced. Now her only family, Granny Olivia, is critically ill. 

Chase Carson had to step into running the family business when his father died. The time is past due for him to visit Miss Olivia. 

Alex and Chase must go on a treasure hunt. Will each find purpose and love for their lives in the process? 


Here's My Review:  Two charming stories of faith and love kept me turning pages until the end and sad there wasn’t more.

The Prayer Shawl finds Sean and Hope connecting through the handmade shawls Hope makes for her patient and friends while they stay in the hospital where she works. Each stitch is made with a prayer, something that Sean, even though raised in the faith, doesn’t understand. Hope can’t live without her trust. Will it be strong enough for both of them?

Inheritance finds Alex Lyndon at a crossroads in her life when she loses her job and her Granny dies unexpectedly. Attending the reading of the will, Alex discovers her Granny has left her with more than the little cottage in Tennessee, and she learns her real wealth comes in the discovery Granny is a writer.

Chase Carson is Granny’s publisher and has come to Tennessee to find the manuscript for the final book. He and Alex search for the CD or handwritten transcript, but someone else is searching, too.

While they turn the cottage upside down looking for the manuscript, they uncover Granny’s secret life and perhaps her final plan to bring Alex and Chase together.
Ms Mowery weaves her own faith and love into the stories. Don’t miss these heart warming tales. 

Here is a link to Paula's  Heart of the Matter radio interview. 

Learn more about Paula at her blog — www.paulamowery.blogspot.com. You can follow Paula at www.facebook.com/pages/Paula-Mowery/175869562589187. Read more of her writing in her monthly columns on www.christianonlinemagazine.com.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Meet Sandra Tilley and Suzanne Purvis

Sandra Tilley and Suzanne Purvis have co-authored an exciting and suspenseful new release titled Destined for Deception.

First, the authors tells us a little bit about themselves:

About the authors, a tale of North meets South.



Sandra Tilley After trading my Sweet Home Alabama for Pensacola, Florida, I'm still Southern--through and through. I was born and raised in a small town near Birmingham, Alabama. For twenty-five years, I taught sixth and seventh grades in the Chalkville-Trussville area. In 2001, I said good-bye to Trussville, Alabama, and hello to beautiful Pensacola, Florida. I taught English at Bailey Middle School in Pensacola for six years and spent many hours sitting on the beach grading essays. Now, on any given day, you might find me on the white sandy beaches of Perdido Key enjoying the sparkling blue-green waters of the Gulf of Mexico. But I won't be grading essays. I'll be plotting my next novel or short story.


Sandra Fetner Tilley on Facebook

Sandy FTilley on Twitter
  


Suzanne Purvis, a writer and artist transplanted from Canada to the Florida Panhandle. Wedged up against Alabama and Georgia, the Deep South oozes into this corner of Florida, and once you visit you won't want to leave. That's what happened to me. Hard to resist the sweet tea, sweeter accents, and the sugar-white-sand beaches. I write fiction of the long, short, and flash variety for both children and adults, usually with a touch or more of humor. I've garnered a few awards including first place in the University of Toronto, Trinity College Short Fiction Contest. I’m a huge football fan, love the beach in winter, small rodents freak me out, and my favorite holiday is April Fool’s Day which just happens to be my son’s birthday. My favorite color is lime green, but not to wear. My favorite food is popcorn, but I rarely get it at the movie theatre. I’m adding yoga to my life, but I won’t attempt a headstand. And I still love hanging out in the children’s section of the library.


You can find me on my website or at my blog or on Facebook.

Destined For Deception

My Review:
Forensic accountant, Drew Arnoud is investigating the BP oil spill and some how local business owner, Bree Finley, figures into a fraud situation involving the tourist trade.  He finds her delectable from the beginning, even if she rams his kayak and sends his expensive titanium glasses to the bottom of the pass.

She feels responsible and offers to help him obtain new lenses and he takes her for dinner, which turns ugly with the intrusion of another local, Mavern. Bree bolts, Drew pursues, and after sharing dessert which she happily allows to replace their interrupted meal, he lets her in on his investigation. She offers to let him peruse the company files when they’re interrupted by her ex-husband.

Things start to unravel fast and as Bree and Drew fit the pieces together, their lives are threatened.

You can feel the gentle gusts from the gulf as you enjoy this tantalizing suspense-filled novella, makes me long for the beach and a drink with a little umbrella. Nice job and kudos to Sandra Tilley and Suzanne Purvis.

Destined for Deception is available here and at Prism Book Group 


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Joining me today is Lindsey Paley

Lindsey has written an amazing story in her book, Stiletto Heels and Bicycle Wheels. I completely enjoyed it and I think you will to.

Here's a few interesting facts about Lindsey and how she wove them into her novel:

What I most love about the story is that love and romance can be found when, where and with whom you least expect it. Rosie's life in NYC is so hectic that she has no time for love or relationships, but even when there is an enforced change of pace, it takes her some time to realise that happiness can be found in the most unexpected of places.  

I have always had a herb garden in my back garden. Every recipe in the novel has been tried and tested and, like Rosie in the novel, they didn't always work out first time. But if at first you don't succeed......! And I think that adage can be a writer's resolution, that despite the hurtful rejections and criticisms of our work we all encounter, we must keep on trying, again and again.

I hope every reader of 'Stiletto Heels' will feel an affinity with the character of Rosie, maybe see a little of themselves in her, particularly her desire to make everyone happy, sometimes at her own expense. Of course, I also hope they thoroughly enjoy the heart-warming story with an uplifting message and happy ending

I  discovered through Lindsey's Facebook posts that she really loves to cook. A real bonus from her book are the wonderful recipes she's included. 

Recipe - In the novel Rosie delves into her Aunt Bernice's illustrated recipe book and attempts to recreate her recipes with varying degrees of success. My favourite recipe is for Lavender shortbread. It has a deliciously subtle aroma of lavender. Here it is - if you decide to try it out - it would be awesome if you posted a photo of the finished product to my author page. https://www.facebook.com/lindseypaleybooks?ref=hl
RECIPE
Aunt Bernice’s Lavender Shortbread
Ingredients
200g softened, unsalted butter
100g lavender sugar
200g plain flour, sieved
100g semolina
Instructions
Beat the butter until smooth, then add the lavender sugar and mix until incorporated. Mix in the flour and the semolina until a dough is formed. Knead very lightly. Try not to overwork. Roll gently and cut out 5cm rounds. Place on a greased baking tray and chill for an hour. Bake in a preheated oven, Gas Mark 4 for 25-30mins, taking care not to overbake, like Rosie did. Leave to cool before transferring to a wire rack. Sprinkle with lavender sugar, or if you wish, lavender petals.

Home-made lavender sugar is easy to make. Wrap a tablespoon of fresh lavender flowers in muslin and tie securely. Place into a sealed jar with 500g of caster sugar. Shake daily and after a week the lavender aroma will have permeated the sugar. Discard the muslin bag and the sugar is ready for use.

Now for my review:

Corporate climber, Rosie Hamilton, finds her busy life crashing down on her when she receives the devastating news her Aunt Bernice has died. Rosie must leave her accounts in the hands of her less than trustworthy boss, Giles, and travel to the UK to settle her aunt’s estate.

Life at the thatched roofed lodge is just what she needed. Even the once glorious, but now overgrown garden, brought her comfort as she returns to its former beauty.

Rosie’s ready to sign the house over and leave the UK by the end of October, but she finds a journal of her aunt’s and Rosie begins to wonder if life in the little cottage with the red door might be just what her heart desires.

This is a wonderful story with well developed characters. The charming description of the lodge and the small close knit community keeps a smile on your face and you can’t put the book down wanting to find out what happened to the players in this romantic tale. 


Check Lindsey's postings on Facebook (link above) and look for her release soon from Prism Book Group.