Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Book Tour of Table for Two by Brandy Bruce! With #Review

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, nonfiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!
You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:


Brandy Bruce


and the book:


Table for Two

Heartsong Presents (April 28, 2014)

***Special thanks to Brandy Bruce for sending me a review copy.***

MY THOUGHTS-I was pleasantly taken back by the writing style of Brandy Bruce. I haven't picked up a Heartsong novel in quite some time and I often have trouble sticking with them as they are so rushed in the plot development. Or maybe I should say there isn't much time for that to occur. The author in this story reveals quite a knack for not making the romance and the story line feel rushed. 

We meet several people and I would really love to hear more about them in future books if possible. My favorite would have to be Mandy, the heroine and food critic of the story. She goes to a meeting to hear well-known chef Gabriel Romano speak and ends up with his son(unknown to her) flirting with her. Now I have to say, Mandy is a klutz. Full blown ditzy:) But I like her! She is really sweet. Leo Romano took me a bit to like. He is very handsome, kind and gracious but when he keeps putting Mandy on hold, I wanted to slap him. You don't keep a girl dangling like that.

One of my favorite parts was the ceremony for Gabriel Romano. This book included a lot of good dialogue not only between Leo and Mandy but Mandy and Ashley, Mandy and her mom, and lastly between Gabriel and his sister Isa. There was a scene or two where I came close to tears as you see Mandy and her mom come to reconcile the differences between each other and even a bit of that with Leo and his father. 

Overall an excellent book that combined well written characters and a good plot. Loved it Brandy!



Brandy Bruce has worked in book publishing for more than nine years--editing, writing, reading, and making good use of online dictionaries. She's a graduate of Liberty University and works as a part-time book editor for a publishing house. She and her husband, Jeff, make their home in Colorado with their two children, Ashtyn and Lincoln. When Brandy isn't editing manuscripts or writing novels, she loves spending time with her family, baking any kind of cheesecake, watching movies based on Jane Austen novels, or curling up with a favorite book. You can contact her through her blog at

Visit the author's website:



Mandy Seymour always books a table for one. So the pretty food critic is stunned when she captures the eye of dashing chef Leo Romano. Leo's good looks and fabulous cooking are swoon-worthy, but it's his tender care of his ailing father and affection for his warm Italian family that really touch her heart. A broken engagement has made Leo cautious. And as he grapples with his dad's illness he's skeptical about starting a new relationship, even with a woman as compelling as Mandy. But as he spends more time with Mandy, Leo starts to realize maybe the last thing he should give up is love.

Product Details:

List Price: $4.99

Publisher: Harlequin/Love Inspired
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-0-373-48703-5


Mandy Seymour held up one hand to hold off traffic as she dashed across the crowded
street, wincing as the “Walk” sign changed to “Stop” before she could reach the
other side.

"Sorry,"she muttered as the sound of horns honking followed her. She pushed
through the revolving door of the Hyatt Regency hotel and rushed past the front
desk. Taking a quick moment to look down at the brochure in her hand, Mandy
took the next left and sighed with relief when she saw that the double doors to
the conference room directly ahead of her were still open. She slid into the
last row of seats and turned her attention to the speaker at the front of the
room. Gabriel Romano. The Gabriel Romano. Owner of two four-star restaurants,
one in Denver, the other in Los Angeles.

Mandy’s mouth watered at the very thought of his infamous tiramisu.

She caught the end of Mr. Romano’s introduction as she shuffled through her purse,
looking for a pen and a notepad.
How can I not have a pen? I always have
pens—but of course, when I need one, there are none to be found.
Mandy  ignored the disapproving voice in the back of her mind that always sounded just
like her mother. Mandy, why are you so disorganized? Mandy, when are you going to be more responsible? Mandy, isn’t it
time you got yourself together?
“Here, take this.”
Mandy looked up in surprise at the voice whispering next to her. A man in a blue
tailored suit with a silver tie handed her a pen.
“Thanks,” Mandy whispered back, accepting the pen, her gaze lingering just a little too
long on the man. His dark wavy hair, jet-black eyes, and olive skin were a nice
Don’t even think about it, Mandy. He’s probably married.
Was that her voice or her mother’s in her head? Mandy shook away the question and settled in her seat, eager to be swept into Gabriel Romano’s rise-to-success story, beginning with learning to cook from his grandmother during summers spent in the Italian countryside.
“So, why are you here?” the guy leaned over and whispered again.
Mandy barely glanced at him. Okay, I know you’re cute, but I’m here to hear Gabriel Romano so stop talking!
Mandy shrugged. “The same reason everyone else is—Gabriel Romano,” she whispered, hoping her annoyance would register with the guy.
“So you’re another admirer,” he said.
It obviously didn’t register with him.
“I’m a food critic,” Mandy whispered in a rush. “I’m going to the new Romano’s on 15th Street tonight and doing a review, so I thought I’d come hear his story.”
A woman in front of them looked back, holding her finger to her lips. “Shh!”
Mandy’s face burned with embarrassment. The guy next to her seemed unaffected.
“What time will you be there?”
“What?” Mandy asked, forgetting to whisper. The woman in front turned around again, glaring this time.
The guy leaned closer.

“What time will you be at Romano’s tonight?”
Mandy blinked, caught for a moment by those dark eyes of his. Why did he want to know? She looked back down at the notepad on her lap without answering.
“I’m Leo, by the way,” the guy whispered.
Mandy sneaked another look over at him. He had a nice smile. But that didn’t mean anything. There could be a lunatic lurking behind that nice smile.
“I’m Mandy Seymour.”
What happened to the lunatic theory? I’m now having a conversation with a complete stranger—missing out on the speech that I
came to hear!

Leo nodded. “Nice to meet you. What time will you be at Romano’s tonight, Mandy?”

Mandy licked her lips and gripped the borrowed pen in her hand.
Leo winked at her. “Maybe I’ll see you there,” he whispered with a smile before leaving the conference room. Mandy watched him go, wondering where he went and wishing she had asked him why he was there.

Leo Romano typed the name Mandy Seymour into his phone and waited for the search engine to give him what he needed. Within seconds, the first page of hits came on the screen and Leo scrolled through, clicking on the third link.

Mandy Seymour, respected food critic for Denver Lifestyle magazine, recommends the Coffee
and Crepes
delicatessen off 23rd and Mountain View. Mandy was quoted as saying, “The service was impeccable and the breakfast quiche exceeded my expectations . . .”

Leo clicked off his phone and shoved his hands in his pockets. Even from the hallway, he heard his father’s voice booming through the conference room. He could quote verbatim his father’s speech, and while it was usually inspirational for the audience, Leo could only stand to hear it so many times.
He stepped closer to the open door, scanning the back row where Mandy Seymour sat, scribbling on her notepad. She’d rushed into the conference room, late, juggling a purse and shoulder bag; then she’d furiously rummaged through her purse until Leo had given her his pen. He’d been amused by her effort to ignore him and her frustration at his attempt at conversation. Wisps of brown hair had escaped the knot tied at the nape of her neck. Leo doubted that Mandy knew her scarf was haphazardly dragging on the floor when she’d rushed in. Everything
about the woman shouted scatterbrained.
Still, scatterbrained or not, when Mandy dropped her pen and then scrambled to find it under her chair, Leo smiled without warning from where he stood watching.
She’s charming. In a clumsy, disheveled sort of way. Leo watched her sit back up and blow a stray hair from her face while she continued taking notes. Not like Carol Ann. Those are two words that could never describe her.
Leo’s neck stiffened at even the thought of Carol Ann Hunt. It had been more than six months since she’d broken off their engagement and moved back to her parents’ home in Chicago.
Leo leaned against the wall near the doorway and closed his eyes, sending up a quick prayer for just a little more endurance.
Please help me get the new restaurant off the ground, Father. It’s so important to my dad. He can’t do this without me.
And I can’t do this without You.

The sound of laughter coming from the conference room broke the moment of reverie and Leo looked up, glancing at his watch and knowing that the speech would be over soon. His father’s voice echoed through the corridor and Leo couldn’t avoid hearing the highlights of his father’s life story. He listened as Gabriel Romano talked about discovering his passion—and talent—for cooking, marrying the love of his life and raising a family in Los Angeles, struggling financially to get his first restaurant off the ground. But through hard work, determination, and a stellar reputation for good food, that first Romano’s eventually thrived.

Gabriel told the audience that he hired his brother to be the manager and overseer of the restaurant while he concentrated on cooking, and a few years later he decided to move his family to Colorado. With the success of the Los Angeles Romano’s, the opening of a second restaurant proved to be much easier. The restaurant on Franklin Street in Denver turned into an overnight success.
As the speech came to a close, Leo noted that his father hadn’t mentioned that Leo would be the head chef, running the kitchen at the 15th Street location. He knew his father wanted to create more buzz by keeping the new chef’s identity a mystery until the restaurant opened. That suited Leo just fine; he had enough on his plate without enduring the press and questions about his new role as head chef, along with the inevitable comparisons that would be made to his father.
As the crowd filed through the double doors, Leo moved back. From a distance, Leo could see Mandy Seymour make her way back down toward the lobby. Knowing she would be at the grand opening tonight, Leo would make sure everything from the food to the service to the lighting would be perfect.

Mandy took her time walking down the street back toward Union Station. She planned to headd tried the week before. It was one of the things she loved most about herway place right outside of Denver  that served amazing meat loaf or that tiny diner off Mosely Street that had the best cherry pie and homemade ice cream.

Not that Romano’s could ever be described as a little hole-in-the-wall type place; with its marble flooring, an outdoor fountain, stone fireplaces, textured walls, and magnificent murals—it was more than impressive. Mandy had been to the restaurant on Franklin Street a number of times. The Italian restaurant stood as practically a landmark in the area. But this latest Romano’s promised new items on the menu, created by a new chef—someone with Gabriel Romano’s obvious stamp of approval.

Mandy tightened her pea coat around her and picked up her pace as the wind brushed across her face. She wished she’d thought to wear a more substantial coat. It had been a mild January for Denver, but as a lifelong Coloradan, Mandy knew how unpredictable the weather could be. The sounds of downtown Denver competed with the brisk wind as Mandy reached Union Station. She loved the energy of being in
the mile-high city. She thrived on the lights, the noise, the crowds; living in a place bustling with people helped with the loneliness of living on her own.
Within seconds of finding a seat on the train, Mandy’s cell phone rang. Just the sound of the Shirelle’s singing Mama Said told Mandy all she needed to know. Claire Seymour was nothing if not predictable. Mandy held the phone to her ear.
“Hi, Mom.”
“Mandy, are you still downtown?”
“No, Mom. I’m already on my way back home. Why?”
“I thought you said you’d call me on your way back to the Tech Center.”
“I’ve only been on the train for about two minutes. I was going to call you once I’d been on the train for three minutes.”
“There’s no need to be snippy, Mandy.”
Mandy watched the city fly by as the train moved. “Sorry.”
“Good. Now, I’m cooking pot roast tonight, and I want you to come over for dinner. Your brother and his wife are coming, too. Six o’clock.”
“Mom, I already told you that I have plans tonight. I have to visit that new restaurant and then start my review. So I can’t make it. But please tell Brian and Samantha that I said hello.”
“I’m making pot roast!”
“Next time, okay?”
“Sunday dinner. I won’t take no for an answer. I expect you in Evergreen by 4:00.”
“Fine. Sunday. 4:00. I’ll be there.”
“And I certainly hope you’re wearing your good coat! It’s freezing outside!”
“I know it is. See you Sunday.”
Mandy clicked her phone off and leaned her head back against the cold window, ignoring the familiar wave of defeat that came over her whenever she talked to her mother.
As the train rattled to a stop, Mandy jumped up, swung her bag over her shoulder and braced herself for the cold wind. She allowed herself a little time to think about the mysterious Leo.
He’s Italian, obviously. Aren’t Italian men famous for flirting? Or maybe that’s Greek men . . . Anyway, he probably didn’t
mean anything by it. And I’m sure he won’t be at Romano’s tonight. He’s too good-looking to be interested in me.
Without a doubt, that last thought had her mother’s tone.
Don’t think about Mom. I’ve proved her wrong, so far, haven’t I? Here I am, living in the city with a job I love . . .
I haven’t turned out to be the failure she feared I would be. Okay, so I’m not married to a dashing, successful man and I’m not the size-six,
fashion-conscious, top-executive she’d wanted me to be—there are worse things in life.
Mandy’s shoulder bag fell to the ground, its contents scattering. Mandy sighed.
Like being a walking disaster.

**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

The Pelican Bride by Beth White Book #Review

She's come to the New World to escape a perilous past. But has it followed her to these far shores?

It is 1704 when Frenchwoman Geneviève Gaillain and her sister board the frigate Pélican bound for the distant Louisiana colony. Both have promised to marry one of the rough men toiling in this strange new world in order to escape suffering in the old. Geneviève knows life won't be easy, but at least here she can establish a home and family without fear of persecution for her outlawed religious beliefs. 

When she falls in love with Tristan Lanier, an expatriate cartographer-turned-farmer whose checkered past is shrouded in mystery, Geneviève realizes that even in this land of liberty one is not guaranteed peace. Trouble is brewing outside the fort between the French colonists and the native people surrounding them. And an even more sinister enemy may lurk within. Could the secret Geneviève harbors mean the undoing of the colony itself?

Gulf Coast native Beth White brings vividly to life the hot, sultry South in this luscious, layered tale.

MY REVIEW-The minute I read the blurb on the back of this book, I knew it sounded like it was right up my alley. Sure, I love a good suspense novel, but I also like historical novels as well. So long as they aren't dry and you feel like you are reading a textbook:) I had no need to worry with this one! Excellent book about a group of people I didn't even know existed.

The book opens with two women disembarking off a ship. These are the Pelican Brides. There is a whole boatload of them and they have come overseas as brides for the men in the Louisiana colony. I have to admit, I had never heard of these women before. By the time I was done, I knew a lot about them. My favorite was Genevieve, the oldest Gaillian sister. I felt a connection with her and the troubles she had watching over her younger sister Aimee. In fact, a couple times I wanted to shake Aimee as she is somewhat shallow and oblivious to what is going on around her. I think she came through in the end though.

I immediately fell in love with Tristan. He is the oldest Lanier brother, very mature and kind. A man with mixed emotions and many battles to wage. His younger brother very much reminded me of Aimee but we see as they both mature and grow.

The historical detail is shown to a great extent and I really liked that. The turmoil and political factions were quite intriguing. Overall an excellent book that I will be picking up again. Way to go Beth!

**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

Surprised By Grace Book #Review. True Story of Elizabeth Sherrill!

Surprised By Grace

Renowned writer Elizabeth “Tib” Sherrill shares her own faith journey at last!  Embrace this page-turner and see God’s work in your life every day.
Tib has written for Guideposts magazine for over sixty years, contributed to Daily Guideposts for over twenty-five, and coauthored the best-selling, inspirational adventures of all time with her husband, John, including: The Hiding PlaceThe Cross and the Switchblade, and God’s Smuggler. Yet, Tib’s most powerful story ever is this beautifully written, exhilarating memoir.
In it, you’ll discover how God’s love transformed her life from one of great struggle to one with a clear direction and find inspiration, hope and strength for your own journey.
Enjoy touching stories about Tib’s family and close relationships, from her unhappy childhood to John’s surprising marriage proposal. Meet her lifelong friend Mea, and  her dear father-in-law who was able to see her for the complex person she was even though he was blind. Travel with her to fascinating places across the United States and Europe. And find out how she overcame her poor self-image after a stunning encounter with her Creator.
Elizabeth Sherrill’s superb storytelling brings you into every scene, making you laugh and cry many times over. You’ll be reminded that God intends hope and freedom for you. You’ll also find wonderful insight and encouragement in the uplifting foreword by Guideposts Editor-in-Chief Edward Grinnan and in the inspirational “Conversation Starters,” particularly useful for women’s Bible studies, book clubs, or home groups.
Surprised by Grace will help you understand more deeply how to completely trust God in the toughest times of your life, how to recognize your dependence on Him, and how to allow Him to light your way.

MY REVIEW-I wasn't quite sure what to expect from this book. I knew it was a biography and I had read the books that she coauthored, but at the same point, was her story like any of these others? Or would it be interesting enough to keep my attention? These were the thoughts that ran through my head as I picked it up to read it. And I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. Enough that I read through this in one day:)

Elizabeth Sherrill grew up in a tough time. Money was tight, her father wasn't bold enough to come right out and say it but he never really believed that there was a God and in the midst of this Liz is walking on her journey to heaven. That is how she puts her life story, taking a trip to heaven. We see how friends impacted her life and churches that were "friendly" and not:) Kind of a lesson behind that one but you have to read the book to find out. A great biography about the woman behind the scenes which I thoroughly enjoyed. Excellent!

**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

SmartforLife Huge #Giveaway!!

Hey everyone! Today I have a giveaway that is being sponsored by SmartforLife. This is a huge sweepstakes that includes $1,000 in product and free coaching!! I received some product from them for review which I will be posting about later this week or early next week and I will have a review of my own at that time. But until then, check this out and make sure to enter!! You can't beat that much in product, not to mention the coaching. Tell everyone you know about it! You can enter through the Rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

Monday, April 28, 2014

CFBA TOUR for Paige Turned by @ErynnMangum. Great Book #Review!

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Paige Turned

TH1NK (April 1, 2014)


Erynn Mangum


A few things about her:

So, if we were having this conversation in person, we would probably be hanging out at Starbucks or one of the cute coffeehouses in town. I’m nuts about all things coffee, I’m crazy about all things pink and girly, and I love, love, love the Food Network! I’m married to my best friend and the most amazing guy ever, Jon. He is amiable toward coffee, does not like anything pink or girly and tolerates the Food Network. So, we make a good match! In July 2010, we became parents to one of the funniest, cutest, sweetest little guys in the whole world (and nope, we aren’t biased at all!), our Nater-Tot, who is legally known as Nathan. Most days, I’m cleaning up messes, making goofy faces, trying to fit some writing in, and just LOVING the life that God has given me!


Despite her valiant efforts, Paige Alder seems stuck in chaos. Her new job as youth intern keeps her hopping from coffee shop to coffee shop all summer long, but at least she’s loving the one-on-one time she gets to spend with the girls. The unfortunate side-effect is that now, four weeks of laundry fills her apartment. Plus, she barely has time to help her sister and best friend with their weddings! And even worse? Something is definitely wrong between her and Tyler. She apologized for what he thought he saw happen with Luke. Can’t they move past it? Or could there be something he’s not telling her—something that could change everything?

If you'd like to read the first chapter of Paige Turned, go HERE.

MY REVIEW-I have to tell you, this whole series has been a hoot to review! Not only is it entertaining but also thought provoking. Paige Alder is once again joined by her best friends Layla and Tyler, along with Rick and Natalie. Oh, and we can't forget the ever disliked Luke. Boy do I dislike him! We see as Paige goes from sitting at a desk job to being overrun with teenage girls:) She juggles things quite well I thought until it comes to Tyler. I kinda wanted to clunk him in the head a couple times. But he is sweet in the end. Layla is such an entertaining character and I couldn't help but laugh over and over between her and Natalie, Rick's wife. Especially the part with the cow milk and goat milk!! A series that I would urge for teenagers and anyone who loves a good laugh.

**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

Friday, April 25, 2014

The Perfect Fitness Gifts for Mom from Best Buy! @BestBuy #GreatestMom

Do you all know how hard it is to find the perfect gift for Mother's Day? I don't know about you, but there are some times that I just have to search and hope I find the right thing. I mean, what do you give the person who means so much? Well, no longer do I have to search so hard. Because Best Buy is on top of everything! They do all the searching for you and all you have to do is look through their gift center. I totally loved this idea and once I had browsed the site, I came up with a ton of gift ideas. Just check some of my favorites below and maybe you will get an idea or two as well.

I am definitely a fitness addict. If you want to use that term:) I like to exercise every day and whether it is racquetball or volleyball, jogging or walking for fun, and yes, even some time on the fitness games for the Wii and X-box, I found several gift items that I would love to receive. My top choice was the Apple iPod Touch. I know Apple is the best out there(in my opinion here, not fact) and this can really do a lot! From listening to tunes as you exercise, to getting apps that will help you count calories and steps, to alarms you can set for workout time. A bit higher priced than the normal mother's day gift, but well worth it with all you can do.

Now for a little bit lower price, under $100, there were several other items that caught my eye. Like the Breville Juice Fountain Compact Electric Juicer. Boy is that a beauty! No better way to make your healthy juices in the mornings than this baby. I have several recipes going through my head looking at that:)

And as a last solution for someone who walks a lot, you can always pick out a $25 iTunes gift card. Perfect for finding upbeat music and tunes that will make the miles go faster. I buy a lot of my music off iTunes and a gift card there would be a perfect gift. Just think, for $25 I could get at least two albums.

One thing I like with Best Buy is their low price guarantee. If you find a lower price, they will match it. So long as you have the same item and the flyer or ad to show the match. Also, for at least right now they have free shipping on all orders $35 and up. You can't beat that! So what are you waiting for? Head over to the Gift Center and start looking. Mother's Day is coming up quickly and no matter who you are shopping for, fitness, foodie, hostess, or the adventure seeker, I am sure you can find exactly what you are looking for.



**DISCLOSURE: The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

CFBA Tour for The Amish Groom by Mindy Clark and Susan Meissner! Book #Review!

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

The Amish Groom

Harvest House Publishers (April 1, 2014)


Mindy Starns Clark
Susan Meissner


Mindy Starns Clark Mindy Starns Clark is the bestselling author of the inspirational Million Dollar Mysteries, the Smart Chick Mysteries, and three standalone mysteries, as well as the nonfiction books The House That Cleans Itself and A Pocket Guide to Amish Life. Her novels include A Penny for Your Thoughts, Don't Take Any Wooden Nickels, A Dime a Dozen, A Quarter for a Kiss, The Buck Stops Here, The Trouble with Tulip, Blind Dates Can Be Murder, Elementary, My Dear Watkins, Whispers of the Bayou, Shadows of Lancaster County, and Under the Cajun Moon, plus other books!

Mindy is also the author of numerous plays and musicals which have been performed all over the United States. She has written textbooks, articles, short stories, and more than 75 computer software manuals. A former singer and stand-up comedian, Mindy lives with her husband and two teenage daughters near Valley Forge, PA. She enjoys speaking to churches, civic groups, and libraries across the country. Her unique blend of humor and insight make her an audience favorite.

Susan Meissner is a multi-published author, speaker, and writing workshop leader with a background in community journalism. Her novels include The Shape of Mercy, named by Publishers Weekly as one of the 100 Best Novels of 2008 and a Carol Award winner. She is a pastor’s wife and the mother of four young adults. When she's not writing, Susan writes small group curriculum for her San Diego church. Visit Susan at her website:, on Twitter at @SusanMeissner, or at


New from bestselling authors Mindy Starns Clark and Susan Meissner, The Amish Groom (Book 1 in The Men of Lancaster County series) explores the men of an Amish community in Lancaster County, how their Amish beliefs play out in their unique roles, and the women who change their lives.

Born to an ex-Amish mother and an Englisch father, 23-year-old Tyler Anderson was raised as a military kid until the age of 6, when his mom passed away. His dad, shipping off to yet another overseas post, placed Tyler in the care of his Amish grandparents, an arrangement that was supposed to be temporary. It lasted a lifetime.

Rachel Hoeck is the young woman waiting for Tyler’s proposal. She senses that though he loves her and wishes to make a commitment to her and his Amish beliefs, part of him still wonders whether an Amish lifestyle is truly for him.
When an opportunity to connect with his father unexpectedly arises, a visit to California causes Tyler to question everything, including a future with Rachel. Will the new girl in his life, Lark, cause him to remain in the Englisch world? Or will he choose to be an Amish groom after all?

A poignant novel of hoping for romance and searching for identity, set in a beloved Amish community.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Amish Groom, go HERE.

MY THOUGHTS-Many of you know that I am not that big a fan of Amish novels. Too many just seem to have the same plot and I can't read them or I get bored. Not so with this one! Mindy Starns Clark is an author well known to me and Susan Meissner is not far behind. This book is a bit different than most Amish plots as a young man, Tyler, goes on a search to find out why his mother left the Amish faith. Tyler is fitting in well but feels himself restless. He enjoys the same spots his mother did before she left and one of them happens to be a secluded pond. In that pond he sees an image of himself and yet different. So who is he really? Could he be destined for a life outside the Amish? And if so, what will happen between him and Rachel, the young woman who loves him and is looking to marry him in the near future?

We take a trip alongside Tyler as he leaves to find himself. We see as he starts to fall for another woman, an Englischer, and the relationship he has with his brother. That part kinda broke me a little when you see how Brady felt about him. And some of the parts between Tyler and his step-mother were just soul searching. As in, wow! One of my favorites is when Liz doesn't want Tyler taking care of her. She has broken her leg and needs some assistance. He proceeds to tell her the following, "The way I see it, the needier you are right now, the more blessed I am to be able to care for you. It's really that simple. And in the caring, the bonds we share are strengthened and renewed. That's how the community works." The ending was super sweet and I loved how things came together. Perfect!

**DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Security Service Will Keep You Safe

As each day passes by, more crime happens; if you watch the news, you will quickly see this. As crime rates rise, people's safety lowers. Are you afraid to live your life and constantly worried if you will be affected by a crime? If you have answered yes, security service in Denver might be the answer for you. Instead of living your life in fear, you can hire a security guard and gain the confidence needed to know that you are safe. You should not put off your life because you are worried that something might happen. Don't take your chances of being the next victim on the news when there are people willing to help you.

There are many different reasons why people need extra security. If you have been planning an event, you can hire security to patrol the event and stand guard wherever it's needed. You can also get security at fairs, concerts, weddings, exhibits, sporting events, and many other venues. If you own a building and would like extra security, you can also hire security to guard your building; they will provide security badges, report different logs, and will inspect bags and luggage. By having extra security, you will know that you and your customers will always be safe. If there are any problems or emergencies, certain procedures will take place to take care of any needs.
When you hire security services, it is essential that you only get the best. It is important that the security team has been trained extensively and has many years of experience. As security standards have changed, it is important that the security guards stay current on new techniques and training. Not everyone is cut out to be a security guard and when you hire someone that is highly trained, you can trust that you are getting the best security possible.
No matter what your different security needs are, you can customize a security plan to give you the exact amount of security that is needed. You can get officers dressed in uniform or undercover officers to provide the security service Denver that you need the most

This is a sponsored post from Bucks2Blog for the enjoyment of my readers. 

**DISCLOSURE: This is a sponsored post from Bucks2Blog for the enjoyment of my readers.  Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tracie Peterson celebrates 100 books with an iPad Mini Giveaway & A SENSIBLE ARRANGEMENT Live Webcast Event!

A Lone Star Brides book.

Marty Dandridge Olson is ready to leave behind the pain of the past.
Answering an advertisement for a “Lone Star bride,” she leaves her Texas ranch and heads to Denver to marry a man she doesn’t know.
Jake Wythe is the man waiting for her.
Burned by love, he marries now simply to satisfy the board of Morgan Bank, which believes a man of his standing in society should be wed. Together Jake and Marty agree they are done with romance and love and will make this nothing more than a marriage of convenience.
When missing money and a collapsing economy threaten his job, Jake’s yearning to return to ranching grows ever stronger, much to Marty’s dismay. But a fondness has grown between them, as well, further complicating matters.
What will happen when their relationship shifts in unexpected ways… and dreams and secrets collide?

MY REVIEW-A Sensible Arrangement is the first book in a new series written by author Tracie Peterson. I found the plot quite interesting and having an arranged marriage with a widow and widower was new for me. Tracie always knows how to capture the attention of the reader and reel them in with a fine story. 

Marty is a widow whose husband was gored to death by a longhorn steer. She has basically given up on God and sees no reason to trust Him with her future, much less her daily life. So she answers an ad for a bride and moves to Colorado, not telling her family what she is doing. That was one of the big problems I had with Marty. She lies constantly throughout the book. And at the end she realizes that lying is just as much a sin as anything else, but it really bothered me reading about her deceit. 

Now Jake was a different story. Very upright and quite dashing. His first wife was dishonest and he can't stand it now so I was waiting to see how it would play out when he realized what Marty was doing. Of course, it was a marriage of convenience anyways so there were no feelings involved, NOT! :) 

I liked how the author put real events and history in the novel. Finding out about the impact silver had on Colorado and the common person made for a good story. Oh, and the servants were so entertaining! I loved Brighton and Samson the most, excluding Alice. My only complaint? I wish the story hadn't ended so abruptly! I felt like I was left hanging with not everything solved. Hopefully that will be taken care of in the next book. There will be another one, right? lol:)


Welcome to the campaign launch for Tracie Peterson's 100th book! A Sensible Arrangement launches Tracie's new Texas-based series, Lone Star Brides, that’s sure to please. As a special treat, devoted fans will be able to catch a glimpse of several popular characters from previous series.

Tracie is celebrating by giving away an iPad Mini and hosting a LIVE webcast event on 4/29.


One winner will receive:

  • An iPad Mini

  • A Sensible Arrangement by Tracie Peterson

  • Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 29th. Winner will be announced at the A Sensible Arrangement Live Webcast Event on April 29th. Connect with Tracie for an evening of book chat, trivia, laughter, and more! Tracie will also be taking questions from the audience and giving away books, fun prizes, and gift certificates throughout the evening.

    So grab your copy of A Sensible Arrangement and join Tracie and friends on the evening of April 29th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)

    Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP today by signing up for a reminder. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 29th!

    **DISCLOSURE: I was given a free product in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine. Please read my full disclosure policy HERE.**

    On The Pineapple Express #Giveaway & Interview with H.L. Wegley!

    Hey readers! Today I have another author to introduce to ya'll. I haven't had the honor of reading his books yet but that is being put on my to do list after checking this one out. I would like you all to meet Harry Wegley! He has been kind enough to offer a giveaway of his latest book, On The Pineapple Express. Make sure to enter through the rafflecopter form.

    Thank you for being with us today, Harry!!

    How long have you known you wanted to be an author?
    Since the 1970s I’ve enjoyed writing and being an author. I published a lot in the scientific literature in the ‘70s, ‘80s, and some in the early ‘90s, but I never knew the joy of writing novels until my wife and I retired in 2008. After penning (actually penciling) my first novel in 2010, I knew.

    Can you tell me a little bit about your latest book?
    On the Pineapple Express, book 2 in the Pure Genius Series, is a high-action, romantic suspense story about a beautiful, brilliant young woman who, with the help of her fiancé, is willing to risk her life to save a group of girls from human traffickers.

    When a reader gets done with your book, what do you want them to come away with?
    Hopefully, there will be a couple of takeaways. First, if God calls us to do something, even though we must face our worst fears and possibly risk our lives, He will give us the courage and the strength to accomplish His purposes. His word tells us at least 400 times, “Do not be afraid.” Secondly, I wanted to paint a picture of the human-trafficking epidemic and the dangers to our children, but I wanted this to be a story that even early teens could read.
    There is a third takeaway, aimed at readers who don’t know our Savior. It’s the message of redemption, presented in a very natural, non-preaching manner.

    Is there a place you have always wanted to visit? A vacation spot, historical monument, overseas, etc?
    One of the regions assigned to me when I co-authored the Wind-Energy Resource Atlas of the world was the U. S. Virgin Islands. I waded through reams of data, pictures, and topographical maps, but never did get a trip to the islands. I would love to snorkel with my wife through the coral gardens along shores of St. Croix.

    If you could have dinner with 2 people, who would they be?
    I hear there’s a big marriage supper coming someday, and Jesus will be there. I already have an invitation, so I’ll wait for that dinner with Him. There are a lot of questions I would like to ask some of the historical figures in the Bible. I’ll have eternity to visit with most of them. But there are some other people I’d like to talk to, people I may never see. For example, I would love to sit across the table from Charles Darwin and tell him about the cell and the universe inside it, a complex universe he was totally ignorant of when he proposed his theories. I want to hear him respond, see the lights come on, and watch him toss Origin of the Species in the trash can. I would like to have dinner with Karl Marx and show him what an attempt to implement his economic theories in the real world looks like … circa 1991 and the collapse of the old USSR. Maybe the lights would come on for him too.

    What one event would you love to be at? Historical or future?
    Genesis 1:1 part b, “… God created the heaven and the earth.” I’m sure I’d be struck dumb with awe, but to see it happen would incredible. It would also settle a lot of arguments among scholars of all stripes. J

    Do you have a favorite hobby?
    Not too long ago, I was really into racquetball, softball, and playing guitar. But, after a hand injury and shoulder surgery, I’m more into reading, a little photography, hiking beaches on the Olympic Peninsula, and snorkeling Maui whenever my wife and I can save up enough pennies for the trip.

    Is there something about you most people wouldn't know?
    I had a lot more fun growing up than most people know. More fun than I should have had. My best friend and I could write a book titled, The 101 Most Fun and Exciting Things to Do with Potassium Nitrate. We made smoke bombs, fire bombs, rocket fuel, and some really cool fake meteorites. We also made a diving suit in which my buddy nearly drowned. But that project didn’t require using potassium nitrate, only a little ignorance and a lot of foolishness.

    Do you have any suggestions for the aspiring writer?
    The power of story is incredible. Jesus, the Master Storyteller and the inventor of story, knew that. So, learn to tell stories. That means learning the craft of plotting and writing them. Read writing craft books. Study novels and stories in the Bible. You’ll never master it all, but when you’ve learned enough about the craft of writing stories, your words will impact people’s lives.

    Any last thoughts for your readers?
    If you think you might enjoy On the Pineapple Express, you’re sure to enjoy the sequel, Moon over Maalaea Bay, set entirely in Maui.

    And how can they connect with you?
    Web site:
    Pelican Book Group: On the Pineapple Express

    Thanks so much for being a guest here today!

    After reading the interview, Mr. Wegley sounds like quite an author. I enjoyed the thought and details he adds to the answers which assures me his books will be just as fulfilling. And one of you, my loyal readers, will be taking away a copy of his book. This giveaway will end 5/8. Winner will be chosen through and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen. USA ONLY!!

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