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Thursday, October 1, 2020

 


Book Review: Scrumptious Independence by Melissa Wardwell





About the Book

 

“Taste and see that the Lord is good.”

And so is Beth’s cooking! It’s a good thing, too. After a lifetime of her family’s smothering embrace, a whole new world opens to her with the passing of her beloved grandmother.

Armed with an inheritance she never expected and orders on how to use it, Beth sets off for Merriweather Island and fulfillment of a lifetime of dreams.

Or so she hopes.

What she didn’t hope for was what most women would—a man who fills her thoughts at the most wonderfully unwelcome times. She doesn’t have time or space for a relationship, but how do you tell love to just go away?

Of course, starting over in a new place is never easy, especially as an outsider in a small community. Add to that a mayor who has her dander up and a woman bound to make her life miserable, is it any wonder that Beth begins to doubt God’s and Gram’s plans?

With her heart betraying her resolve and challenges to her faith, Beth finds it takes bravery she didn’t know she had to discover just how scrumptious independence can be.

This “Merriweather book” is the second in a new series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Island Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

 

Click here to purchase your copy!

 



My Thoughts

Scrumptious Independence by Melissa Wardwell is a fun beach read. Beth makes a fascinating character as someone so isolated from most of her family. Ms Wardwell does a great job portraying interesting characters with real hurts and difficulties. I adore Merriweather Island and its cast of characters. Half the fun of reading this series is finding out what is happening now with characters from previous books. I think readers of Christian romance will love this book. I received a digital copy of this book from the author with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.





About the Author

Melissa Wardwell resides in Owosso, Michigan with her husband Jonathan, three children, a cat, and two pitbulls.

Besides writing, she enjoys reading, having coffee with friends, and spending quality time with her husband kayaking and fishing.

Melissa likes to joke about the voices in her head, but it is those voices have inspired her to write several romance novels such as “I Know the Plans” (a story based in her hometown of Owosso) and “Finding Hope in Savannah”. When she is not penning works of fiction, she is busy reviewing books on her blog, Back Porch Reads.

To see more from Melissa Wardwell, visit www.melissawardwell.com

 

More from Melissa

“Lord, I don’t know how I can keep doing this.”

That was my prayer one evening in 2019 as I made my way to praise practice. I knew that writing was something God had called me to (because He never seems to call you to do something you enjoy) but the finances were just not there to publish another book. I felt lost in the uncertainty of the path moving forward and I needed a light. I had just shared all my concerns with my parents and left with my dad’s words ringing in my head. Are you writing to gain notoriety or are you writing for God?

The next morning, CelebrateLit had a post looking for submissions for a new and innovative series. Hope burst within me and I know I needed more information. I followed instructions and spoke with Sandy Barela and Chautona Havig. The more I was told, the more excited I became because I knew I needed to be part of this collection.

Ideas were hatched, characters began to talk, and a book proposal was sent. I continued to work on the development of characters and the mobile business knowing in my heart that God had given me this opportunity. I wouldn’t do things halfway. And when the confirmation email came, I was ready to share the beautiful story and characters that developed.

Beth is a food truck proprietor, so that means she spends most of her time cooking. In an effort to grow her recipes, I have been making videos of me cooking some of our family’s favorites as well as raiding my mom’s recipe box. The result is some amazing food to share.

Every book, pre-order card, and my YouTube channel has recipes on it. And so will this tour.

With it being summertime, our family doesn’t want those heavy meals so sometimes chips and sandwiches are all we need in the evenings. One favorite is my chicken salad.

Now, this recipe is easily substituted with other things like however, you like your chicken.



Melissa’s Chicken Salad

Feeds 4 (unless you have big eaters.)

2 cans of chicken (you can use cooked but this is quick and easy

1/2 cup of red grapes – halved

1/2 cup celery – diced

Make sure you rinse all of this well as you prep the salad

Dressing

1 1/2 cup of miracle whip (you can use mayo)

1/2 tsp mustard powder

1 tbsp white vinegar

1 tsp of sugar

Mix everything together and serve on your favorite bread option or on a bed of lettuce. I like mine in a pita pocket or on lettuce. This time it was with a pita pocket with a side of lightly salted chips and a pickle.

Now, just a little side note, you can add what ever veggie or fruit you like. Apples and cucumbers would be a great addition as well. So, don’t feel like you have to do things exactly like I do. Make it your own.

 

Bon appétit




Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 21

Soulfully Romantic, September 21

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 21

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 22

Texas Book-aholic, September 22

Inklings and notions, September 22

For Him and My Family, September 23

deb’s Book Review, September 23

Artistic Nobody, September 23 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

She Lives To Read, September 24

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, September 24

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 24

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 24

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 25

Quiet Workings, September 25

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 25

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions , September 26

Older & Smarter?, September 26

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 26

Blogging With Carol, September 27

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, September 27

Batya’s Bits, September 27

Emily Yager, September 28

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 28

Stories By Gina, September 28

Reviewingbooksplusmore, September 28

CarpeDiem, September 29

Christian Bookaholic, September 29

Cultivating Us, September 29

Aryn the Libraryan, September 30

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 30

Connect in Fiction, October 1

The Collaborative Press, October 1

Livin’ Lit, October 1

Simple Harvest Reads, October 2 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

The Meaderings of a Bookworm, October 2

Godly Book Reviews, October 2

Joanne Markey, October 3

Captive Dreams Window, October 3

Vicky Sluiter, October 3

Blossoms and Blessings, October 4

Splashes of Joy, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4



Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Melissa is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a 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.

https://promosimple.com/ps/10105/scrumptious-independence-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tuesday, September 22, 2020


Book Review: To Love a Prince by Rachel Hauck



About the Book

 

Book:  To Love a Prince

Author: Rachel Hauck

Genre:  Royal Romance

Release Date: August 11, 2020

An enchanting new royal romance from NYT bestselling author Rachel Hauck

Daffodil Caron is not a princess, even though she once dreamed of being one. After all, she grew up as a playmate to royal princes, running through the halls of Perrigwynn Palace and dining with the queen. But the day she stumbled upon a royal secret, everything changed.

Flash forward eighteen years, and Daffy’s living a sweet, non-royal life. A skilled art curator for the Royal Trust, she has friends, a flat in the heart of the city, and a handsome, successful fiancée. The last person on her mind is Gus, a prince she once called her best mate.

HRH Prince Augustus is no longer “Prince Pudgy,” as caricaturized by the press, he’s charming and gorgeous, possessing a world-famous smile. But when he’s jilted at the altar by an American heiress as millions of people around the world watched, the spare heir to Lauchtenland’s ancient House of Blue escapes, finding solace on a Florida beach.

A year as a regular bloke allows him to rethink his purpose. He’s half decided his calling is to pour pints at a tiki bar, rather than serving his country and the Family.

Until an accident on the beach with a Frisbee changes his course.

Despite his long hair and beard, Daffy recognizes her prince, and their childhood friendship is renewed. She assures Gus Lauchtenland needs him, giving him the courage to return home.

When Daffy and Gus find themselves on assignment to Hadsby Castle in preparation for his brother’s wedding, their friendship blooms into affection.

But Gus cannot, will not, trust his heart again. Daffy’s engaged. And she also remains a royal family outcast because she knows the Queen’s secret.

When affection grows into love and secrets are exposed, trust is destroyed. Gus must choose which is stronger: the lies of his past or the hope of his future. And Daffy must face every fear to prove she will forever love a prince.

“Another compelling royal story by the master of princely tales!”  Susan May Warren, USA Today bestselling, RITA award-winning novelist

 

Click here to get your copy!

 


My Thoughts

To Love a Prince by Rachel Hauck is an absolute delight. And to think it’s just the first book in a new series!!! I am a long time fan of this author’s books and have to say this book is some of her best writing yet. This book is the perfect mix— just enough reality to be believable, just enough fantastical elements to touch your heart, and just enough royalty romance to make you swoon.  I’m not sure how, but these elements work together so beautifully. This book was everything I hoped and more. I cannot wait to read the continuing story in subsequent books. It will be worth the wait! I highly recommend this book to readers that love romance and phenomenal storytelling. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.


About the Author

Rachel Hauck is an award winning, New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author.

Her book The Wedding Dress was named Inspirational Novel of the Year by Romantic Times Book Reviews. She is a double RITA finalist, and a Christy and Carol Award Winner.

Her book, Once Upon A Prince, first in the Royal Wedding Series, was filmed for an Original Hallmark movie.

Rachel has been awarded the prestigious Career Achievement Award for her body of original work by Romantic Times Book Reviews.

A member of the Executive Board for American Christian Fiction Writers, she teaches workshops and leads worship at the annual conference. She is a past Mentor of The Year.

At home, she’s a wife, writer, worship leader and works out at the gym semi-enthusiastically.

A graduate of Ohio State University (Go Bucks!) with a degree in Journalism, she’s a former sorority girl and a devoted Ohio State football fan. Her bucket list is to stand on the sidelines with Ryan Day.

She lives in sunny central Florida with her husband and ornery cat.

 

More from Rachel

Hello Royal Rockstar Readers!

I’m thrilled to share To Love A Prince with you. So many of you who loved the Royal Wedding Series have asked for more royals so as I noodled over new story ideas, my thoughts drifted toward princes and princesses. What’s more romantic than a royal wedding?

This royal story, the first book in a new series, True Blue Royal, is set in a new fictional country, Lauchtenland, in the North Sea. I’m really squeezing all those oil wells currently occupying that body of water.

The beauty of royal stories is they remind us of who we really are: princes and princesses. There is always a point in the story where the royal character, as well as the commoner, must come to grips with his and her true identity! Who God says we are!

Stories are a powerful reflection of life and it’s fun to insert ourselves into the tale. While fiction employs a lot of hyperbole we can find ourselves on the page somewhere, somehow.

Thanks for going on this little tour with me and To Love A Prince. You are so vital to my story as an author. Thank you!

Yours,

Rachel


 

Blog Stops

Worthy2Read, September 10

Captive Dreams Windows, September 10

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 10

Genesis 5020, September 10

Novels Corner, September 10

Connect in Fiction, September 11

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 11

deb’s Book Review, September 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 11

Remembrancy, September 12

Breny and books, September 12

Texas Book-aholic, September 12

Inklings and notions, September 12

For Him and My Family, September 13

Artistic Nobody, September 13 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 13

The Book Chic Blog, September 13

Among the Reads, September 14

Soulfully Romantic, September 14

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 14

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 14

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 15

lakesidelivingsite, September 15

All-of-a-kind Mom, September 15

Reflections From My Bookshelves, September 15

Betti Mace, September 16

Where Faith and Books Meet, September 16

Mypreciousbitsandmusings, September 16

Blossoms and Blesssings, September 16

She Lives To Read, September 17

Wishful Endings, September 17

Christian Chick’s Thoughts, September 17

Life of Literature, September 17

Life, Love, Writing, September 17

Book Love, September 18 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Maureen Timerman, September 18

Batya’s Bits, September 18

Labor Not in Vain, September 18

Bigreadersite, September 19

Hallie Reads, September 19

Jeanette’s Thoughts, September 19

Splashes of Joy, September 19

Christian Bookaholic, September 20

Musings of A Sassy Bookish Mama, September 20

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 20

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 20

Inside the Wong Mind, September 21

By The Book, September 21

Mary Hake, September 21

Godly Book Reviews, September 21

Hebrews 12 Endurance, September 22

Melissa Wardwell’s Back Porch Reads, September 22

Livin’ Lit, September 22

Writing from the Heart Land, September 22

Simple Harvest Reads, September 23 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Mamma Loves Books, September 23

Daysong Reflections, September 23

Black ‘n’ Gold Girl’s Book Spot, September 23


Giveaway



To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away a royal gift box of Pampering Princess items that includes bath balms, tea, tiara and other surprises!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/10098/to-love-a-prince-celebration-tour-giveaway

Monday, September 21, 2020

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Book Review: Something Worth Doing by Jane Kirkpatrick


Something Worth Doing by Jane Kirkpatrick is a fascinating novel based on the life of a real American woman. One of the earliest suffragists and a contemporary of Susan B. Anthony, Abigail Scott Duniway lived a remarkable life and this author really brought her story to life with amazing research. The time period and serious challenges faced were brought into vivid detail. This is an important story and I think this author tells it beautifully. This story is important to remember. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.

 



Book Review: The Christmas Swap by Melody Carlson

The Christmas Swap by Melody Carlson is the perfect Christmas read. I adored the story and found it the perfect feel good story you expect for Christmas time. Mistaken identities, a house swap, and mischievous antics make this book a fun read. The snowy Colorado setting definitely adds to the Christmasy feel of the book. I think readers of romance will adore this holiday tale. I sure did. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.



Wednesday, September 9, 2020



Book Review: Let Them Be Kids by Jessica Smartt


Let Them Be Kids by Jessica Smartt is a phenomenal book that I think all parents should read. I loved the author's previous book Memory Making Mom and I was excited to pick up this book as well. I think this book is absolutely revolutionary for parents in so many ways. This is a book to read and re-read. It is full of practical ideas to implement now as well as broad principles that are life changing and so freeing. I really enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it. Childhood should be innocent and free and a time to learn and grow. Pick up this book if you need ideas on how to make those things heppen. So life changing! I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.
 

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

 


Book Review: The Crushing Depths by Dani Pettrey

About the Book


Book: The Crushing Depths
Author: Dani Pettrey
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: June 30, 2020
They know the power and peril of the ocean.
 
But as they get closer to the deadly truth…
 
An even greater danger lurks just beneath the surface.
 
When an accident claims the life of an oil-rig worker on the first drilling platform off the North Carolina coast, Coast Guard investigators Rissi Dawson and Mason Rogers are sent to take the case. Tensions surrounding the oil rig are high and the death has everyone on edge. Environmental activists are threatening to do whatever it takes to stop the structure from being completed, while rumors are being whispered about ancient curses surrounding this part of the ocean.

Mounting evidence shows the death may not have been an accident at all. Was he killed by one of the activists or, perhaps more frighteningly, a member of his own crew? Rissi and Mason have to sort through not only a plethora of suspects, but also their own past and attraction to each other.

Just as the case seems like it’ll break open, worse news arrives. A tropical storm has turned their way and soon they’re cut off from any rescue–and right where the killer

wants them. It’s a race to discover his identity before he eliminates the threat they pose.
Click here to get your copy!
 

My Thoughts

The Crushing Depths by Dani Pettrey is book 2 in the author's Coastal Guardians series. This series is a fascinating look at the dangers faced by the Coast Guard Investigative Service (CGIS), a group that is extremely in demand in this series! With its beach and ocean setting, this is a great summer beach read, but it is action-packed from start to finish! Having read book 1, I enjoyed seeing the continuing story of the characters from that book, but I do think this book could be read as a standalone novel. This book is full of twists and turns and nearly everyone seems a suspect. This is the hallmark of a wonderful author. I read this genre frequently and often figure out mysteries before the end of the book. This book was very difficult to figure out and I definitely guessed wrong! I highly recommend this novel to readers that love mystery and suspense with just a bit of romance thrown in. It is a delightful read and I cannot wait for the next book in the series. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.


About the Author


Praised by New York Times best-selling author Dee Henderson as “a name to look for in romantic suspense,” Dani Pettrey has sold more than half a million copies of her novels to readers eagerly awaiting the next release. Dani combines the page-turning adrenaline of a thriller with the chemistry and happy-ever-after of a romance. Her novels stand out for their “wicked pace, snappy dialogue, and likable characters” (Publishers Weekly), “gripping storyline[s],” (RT Book Reviews), and “sizzling undercurrent of romance” (USA Today). She researches murder and mayhem from her home in Maryland, where she lives with her husband. Their two daughters, a son-in-law, and two adorable grandsons also reside in Maryland. For more information about her novels, visit www.danipettrey.com
 

More from Dani


Enjoy this special recipe for a Lavender and Honey Latte that makes a special appearance in my book!



Blog Stops

Where Faith and Books Meet, August 12

Losing the Busyness, August 12

deb’s Book Review, August 12

Texas Book-aholic, August 13

Fiction Full Of Faith, August 13

For Him and My Family, August 13

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 13

Artistic Nobody, August 14 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Ashley’s Bookshelf, August 14

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, August 14

Through the Fire Blogs, August 15

Mia Reads, August 15

April Hayman, Author, August 15

Emily Yager, August 15

Inklings and notions, August 16

Stories By Gina, August 16

CarpeDiem, August 16

Betti Mace, August 17

Lighthouse Academy, August 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 17

KarenSueHadley, August 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 18

lakaesidelivingsite, August 18

Livin’ Lit, August 18

The Christian Fiction Girl, August 19

Life, Love, Writing, August 19

Blogging With Carol, August 19

Life of Literature, August 19

Older & Smarter?, August 20

Inside the Wong Mind, August 20

Mary Hake, August 20

Melissa Wardwell- Back Porch Reads, August 21

Southern Gal Loves to Read, August 21

Empowermoms, August 21

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, August 21

Amanda Tero, August 22

Splashes of Joy, August 22

Simple Harvest Reads, August 22 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Pause for Tales, August 22

Blossoms and Blessings, August 23

Worthy2Read, August 23

Spoken from the Heart, August 23

Hallie Reads, August 23

The Artist Librarian, August 24

Christian Bookshelf Reviews , August 24

Daysong Reflections, August 24

Hebrews 12 Endurance, August 25

Live. Love. Read., August 25

Remembrancy, August 25

Lights in a Dark World, August 25


Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Dani is giving away the grand prize package of a necklace, tumbler 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.

  Book Review: Scrumptious Independence by Melissa Wardwell About the Book   “Taste and see that the Lord is good.” And so is Beth’s cookin...