Friday, August 9, 2019

Review & Giveaway: A Lady's Maid by Jen Geigle Johnson



https://amzn.to/2YGSd1u

My rating: 3 stars / I liked it

http://www.amazon.comhttp://www.amazon.comhttps://deseretbook.com/p/a-lady-s-maid?variant_id=179365-paperbackhttp://www.goodreads.com

Synopsis


Molly O’Malley, lady’s maid to the progressive Lady Amanda Halloway, is determined to continue the life’s work of her lost love, killed in the Peterloo Massacre. But when her efforts and a trip to Lady Halloway’s charitable orphanage culminate in her own abduction, Molly’s eyes are opened to the horrifying crimes transpiring in the city’s slums. Despite the risks, she broadens her mission and is drawn ever closer to the peril all around them.

Thomas Flaherty, a footman in the Halloway household, has been with Molly from the beginning, but he fears she will never trust him with her heart. Even though her cause and happiness are of foremost importance to him, his loyal patience is tested by the fears that keep her at a distance. But with their safety on the line, Thomas is resolved to sacrifice everything for the woman he loves.

Risking their lives and their love, Molly and Thomas and a team of nobles on their side will stop at nothing to empower the powerless, no matter the personal cost.


My Review

There is amazing history in this book. The kind that I am so grateful for as a woman and try not to take for granted the sacrifices of those who paved the way for suffrage. I was glad to learn about the historical details that were new to me. Even though this book has a slow beginning as it introduces a bevy of characters, the action and suspense picks up the pace with quite a few dangerous situations- much of it due to Molly's naive recklessness. I had an overall feeling of anxiety and stress as I read, and had a difficult time connecting with the emotions of the main characters. The narrative is split between several characters, and I felt like it divided my focus. I thought the romantic moments between Molly and Thomas were wonderful, but the ones between Chloe and Annesley fell flat. Perhaps if I had read the preceding book, A Nobleman's Daughter, I would have been drawn in more.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thursday, August 8, 2019

Review: Wally's Misadventure by Chrys Wimer


https://amzn.to/2GU3q3u

My rating: 2 stars / It was okay

http://www.amazon.comhttp://www.amazon.comhttp://www.barnesandnoble.comhttp://www.goodreads.com

Synopsis

Wally had been cooped up all winter and was ready for a great adventure! His chores came first, then after his father reminded him of the rules, Wally was off. The first rule was to never go exploring alone, but when none of Wally’s friends could go, he was determined to go anyway. Look inside to find out what Wally faces on his adventure!

My Review

I'm a huge fan of children's books and love collecting my favorites- current releases and those from my own childhood, especially those with remarkable illustrations. I enjoyed the forest setting of Wally's Misadventure and the variety of creatures he interacts with on his journey. 44 The overall feelings I got while reading the book were first of disappointment as Wally's friends are each too busy to play with him, and then of anxiety as he ventures into an unknown part of the forest alone and encounters some dangerous animals and situations. The narrative is a bit stilted, but the book is obviously written to be used as a teaching tool with children to open discussions of what to do in similar situations. Several elements of the digital illustrations are amateurish and distracted me from the story. I especially think the landscapes were too dark/intense and prevented the animals from standing out from the background.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)


Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Blog Tour, Interview & Giveaway: Out of Liberty Movie Trailer


http://outofliberty.com/



http://outofliberty.com/

Movie Synopsis

Winter 1839. LIBERTY, MISSOURI. Local jailer, Samuel Tillery (Jasen Wade) is tasked with watching Missouri's most wanted men as they await their upcoming hearing. Caught between the local Missourians' increased drive to remove the prisoners, and the prisoners' desperate efforts to survive, Tillery is pushed beyond what any lawman can endure. Based on actual recorded accounts, Out of Liberty is an intense, evocative western, with an outcome you have to see to believe.





Q&A with Movie Director Garrett Batty

Where did the concept come from for Out of Liberty?

I love a good Western, and I've wanted to do one for a while. The events at Liberty Jail involve a triangle of conflict between the jailer, the mob and the prisoners. It seemed like an intriguing plot to explore.  Amidst some of the better known occurrences were attempted jailbreaks, repeated appeals to the legal system and an impromptu court hearing. With 1830’s Missouri as a setting, it’s the perfect backdrop for a powerful western.

What is the inspiration behind the story? 

OUT OF LIBERTY is based on the true events that happened at Liberty Jail in 1839.  Mob rule and public opinion collided with religious liberties and expressions of faith.  It led to a conflict that escalated beyond what either side wanted. Today, with ever-present social media and opinionated commentators stirring up reactions and attacks toward any differing belief, the similarities felt very relevant.  Fortunately, we see in both cases, that principled individuals, dedicated to the good of society, can make a difference.

Any learning moments you want to share?

Any film presents opportunities for learning moments. Whether in the research phase, fundraising phase, production, post, or distribution, I’m always learning more and more about the process.  One lesson that relates specifically to OUT OF LIBERTY was learning to respect the humanness of whom the story is about.  Often I read historical accounts, but fail to recognize that they are written about real people, who deal with the same human hopes, dreams, faith and fears that I go through.  So I learned to not only show their actions, but to help the audience understand the human emotion that was driving their actions.  So in a moment of weakness, when Sydney Rigdon (Brock Roberts) doesn’t live up to my expectations, appreciating his humanness helps me to be more understanding of his actions.


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, August 5, 2019

Review: The Lady in the Coppergate Tower by Nancy Campbell Allen


https://amzn.to/2ZsME2Z

My rating: 4 stars / I really liked it

http://www.amazon.comhttp://www.amazon.comhttp://www.barnesandnoble.comhttps://deseretbook.com/p/lady-in-the-coppergate-tower?variant_id=170390-paperbackhttp://www.bookdepository.comhttp://www.goodreads.com

Synopsis

Hazel Hughes has spent her life believing she is a Medium—someone who can talk to ghosts. But as of yet, that skill has remained frustratingly elusive. She is also suffering from a reoccurring childhood dream of someone who looks almost exactly like Hazel, but this dream version of herself is slowly going mad.

Sam MacInnes is a talented surgeon who runs in the highest social circles thanks to his family’s position and history. When Sam hires Hazel to assist him with his medical practice, he is immediately drawn to her intelligence, wit, and beauty.

Their potential relationship is derailed one evening when a mysterious count arrives in London and reveals to Hazel the truth about her past: she was abducted at birth and her twin sister has fallen dangerously ill.

Hazel agrees to travel to Romania with Count Petrescu in order to save her sister, and Sam insists on accompanying her. The count has secrets, though, and the journey grows more sinister with every mile that draws Hazel closer to her homeland. Even as her feelings for Sam become deeper and more complicated, she fears she might not survive the quest to save her sister with her heart intact, not to mention her life. She must learn to draw on gifts she doesn’t know she has if they are going to ever return home again.

Hazel and Sam must fight their way past dark magic, clockwork beasts, and their own insecurities as they try to reach her sister in the impenetrable Coppergate Tower before time runs out.


My Review

The author does a wonderful job drawing the reader into the world of fantasy fairy-tale retelling and steampunk with realistically grounded characters and a mystery to solve. Unrequited love that is secretly not unrequited is one of my favorite tropes and I really enjoyed the developing romance between Hazel and Sam with the tension that holds them back all the while falling more in love with each other. There is a darkness to the suspense as they follow the dubious Romanian uncle to Hazel's sister, and I was anxious to see how they would rescue her. Such creative world-building! Characters and situations from the previous two books are referred to and while I had read the second book in the series, I wish that I had read the first one also, so I would recommend reading them in order for full enjoyment. It definitely works as a standalone though.

(I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)




Blog Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway: Hope for Tomorrow by Michelle De Bruin


 

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour (and Giveaway!) for Hope for Tomorrow by Michelle De Bruin, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

https://amzn.to/319bgxT 
Title: Hope for Tomorrow 
Author: Michelle De Bruin  
Publisher: Mantle Rock Publishing 
Release Date: October 23, 2018  
Genre: Inspirational Historical Fiction

When Logan De Witt learns of his father’s sudden death, he returns home to the family’s dairy farm. During his stay, he discovers his mother’s struggle with finances and his younger sister’s struggle with grief. Concern for his family presses Logan to make the difficult decision to leave his career as a pastor and stay on the farm. As a way to make some extra money, he agrees to board the teacher for their local school.

Karen Millerson arrives from Chicago ready to teach high school but her position is eliminated so she accepts the role of country school teacher. Eager to put her family’s ugly past behind her, Karen begins a new career to replace the trust she lost in her own father who had been in ministry when she was a child.

Logan and Karen both sense a call from the Lord to serve him, but neither of them expected that one day they would do it together.

Can Karen learn to trust again? Will Logan lay aside his grief in exchange for God’s purpose for his life?


  EXCERPT

Logan’s heart thundered deep in his chest. He and Karen supported each other, partnered together in so many ventures, and shared joys as well as sorrows. Even more, along the way she’d become the prayer support he’d thought forever gone from his life after the loss of Dad. He stared at the pages in his hands, attempting to read them. His mind spun. In all of Logan’s efforts to stay focused on God, God had actually dropped right into Logan’s life the perfect woman for him.



ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

Michelle De Bruin is a worship leader and spiritual services provider. She lives in Iowa with her husband and two teenage sons. A romantic at heart, Michelle is always looking for glimpses of God’s love through the window of a good story.  

CONNECT WITH MICHELLE: Website | Facebook | Twitter

TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a prize pack that includes a print copy of Hope for Tomorrow and a $25 gift card plus a set of handmade quilted hot pads and Dutch chocolate.


Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight August 5, 2019 and last through 11:59 PM EST on August 12, 2019. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

 

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
cropped-justread-logo.png
*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.





Thursday, August 1, 2019

Spotlight: Love and Other Mistakes by Jessica Kate


 

Welcome to the Blog Tour for Love and Other Mistakes by Jessica Kate, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

https://amzn.to/2SY2AaW 
Title: Love and Other Mistakes 
Author: Jessica Kate  
Publisher: Thomas Nelson 
Release Date: July 30, 2019 
Genre: Romantic Comedy

There’s a fine line between love and hate . . . And for the last seven years, Natalie Groves has hated Jeremy Walters.

Natalie Groves was meant for great things. But soon after her fiancĂ© left, Natalie’s father was diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly her grand plans evaporated . . . and God felt very far away.

Fast-forward seven years, and an internship presents Natalie a chance at her destiny—but she needs a job to work around it. And the only offer available is worse than a life sentence. Her ex Jeremy, now back in town, is desperate for help with his infant son and troubled teenage niece, Lili. And Natalie may be just the one to help Jeremy . . . provided they don’t kill each other in the process.

When Jeremy and Natalie join forces, sparks fly. But will either of them get burned along the way?


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

Australian Jessica Kate is a sassy romance author and addict.

Her novels feature wit, snark and grit, and her StoryNerds podcast gives her a chance to nerd out with others about these ingredients in books, movies and TV.

She has a passion for garlic bread, theme parks and Batman.

Sign up to her newsletter at jessicakatewriting.com to hear first about her books, including her upcoming novels Love and Other Mistakes and A Girl’s Guide to the Outback.

The StoryNerds podcast is available on Spotify and Apple Podcasts and at www.storynerds.podbean.com.

CONNECT WITH JESSICA: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

cropped-justread-logo.png 

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.





Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Cover Reveal: The Aftermath by Amy Matayo




http://www.amazon.comhttp://www.amazon.comhttp://www.goodreads.com

Synopsis

According to Riley Mae Floss, life is a ten-page menu of possibilities. As the owner of a cupcake shop in small-town Missouri, she thrives on candies and rainbows and spreading joy every chance she gets. Even her hair is the color of bubble gum. Life is just the way she likes it, so why would she want anything to change now? 

But when a tornado rips into Riley Mae’s southern town and destroys nearly everything in its path, her happy little life changes in less than forty-two seconds. Buildings gone. Homes carried away. People missing or even dead. Her bakery a shell of what it once was; also her life. Riley Mae’s picture-perfect world is shattered, and everyone she cares about has been hurt in the process. 

According to insurance adjuster Chad Gamble, life always works out exactly the way it’s supposed to…for other people. As for him, life is a bit of a crapfest—one where he never wins the prize, makes the starting team, or gets the girl. He’s straight-laced, suit-and-tie, all-business, and sees the world for the color it is: muted gray with a little black around the edges.  

So when Chad Gamble walks into Riley Mae’s ruined bakery to “assess the damages”—his words, not hers—he has no intention of getting bogged down by sentimental nonsense. Sparks immediately start to fly, and not the good kind. Who does this pushy, pink-haired chick think she is, treating him like an outsider when all he came to do was help?  He can’t figure out why the locals like her so much. 

Or worse, why he can’t stop thinking about her.