Thursday, December 7, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: The Gentleman's Deception by Karen Tuft


ABOUT THE BOOK

Renowned actress Ruby Chadwick, the Darling of Drury Lane, has long planned and prepared for her final performance. With exceptional beauty comes the unwanted attention of men, and after years of fending off odious suitors, Ruby is ready to leave it all behind in a favor of a quiet life. The first step is to reclaim a piece of her past: her true identity as Lavinia Fernley. But leaving town unnoticed proves impossible, and in one desperate moment, Lavinia embarks on the greatest act of her life when she throws herself into the arms of a stranger to avoid recognition.

Lucas Jennings is shocked to find the stunning redhead in his arms, but something moves him to play along with her ruse when she calls him her husband. This charade marks the start of an unpredictable journey as he escorts the lovely Lavinia and her traveling companions to Primrose Farm, far from the glaring lights of London. Soon, the tables are turned when Lucas introduces Lavinia to his family—as his fiancee. Before long, their mutual deception begins to feel all too real. But when the truth of her past is revealed, will Lavinia's dream of a happy ending slip through her fingers?

REVIEW

Having read Tuft's The Earl's Betrothal and loving it, I was eager to get my hands on this new book of her's.  And it turns out this one is related to that one.  Lucas was a friend of the main character in the other book.  I found it delightful to return to a character already known.  And like the other book, this one also has a rather unusual story line.

Lucas Jennings has bid adieu to his friend the Earl of Halford and is reluctantly making his way home.  Reluctantly, because he must face the woman he loved who married his brother, and the rest of his family without anything to show for the last seven years.  He does not at all expect a strange woman to throw herself into his arms and claim him as her husband.  Yet that is exactly what happens.  As he comes to know the beautiful Lavinia, he wonders if he's found his path after all.  At the very least, he's found a way to postpone going home.  But Lavinia is on the run from her past as a famous actress and isn't really prepared for what she finds at Primrose Farm, the property she has inherited. 

The witty banter between Lavinia and her friends added much to the book as Lavinia has to relearn how to be herself and how to trust.  Lucas makes for an honorable hero that I couldn't help but cheer for in his efforts to help Lavinia open up about her past.  Tuft has written another engaging, enjoyable regency romance.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE

*Dec. 8th: https://joyinthemoments.wordpress.com/, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/, http://gettingyourreadonaimeebrown.blogspot.com/, http://www.kindleandme.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/


 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: The Hunter's Son by Gregg Luke


ABOUT THE BOOK

For as long as Jarem can remember, the war between the Nephites and Lamanites has raged on. But for the young Nephite, there is security in the knowledge that the ruthless Lamanite warriors would never dare cross the border into his village—until the unthinkable happens. A Lamanite raiding party defies boundaries, destroying the village and killing Jarem’s family. Enslaved to his enemies, Jarem must rely on his faith in God as he endures unimaginable hardships at the hands of the Lamanites—including being cruelly separated from the woman he loves.

But even amid trials, there is goodness to be found. When Chemish, Master Healer of the Lamanites, takes ownership of Jarem, the young man discovers unexpected kindness. Jarem becomes the healer’s apprentice, and soon Chemish finds his soul stirred by the Christian faith of his student. But even as the bond between the two unlikely friends grows, the hatred of the Lamanites spreads. It is no longer enough for them to own the Nephites—they want to exterminate every one of them, and even personal slaves are no longer safe. Now, Jarem’s only hope of survival is a dangerous escape that will take him through the heart of Lamanite land . . .

REVIEW

Unfortunately, this week has been so busy that I haven't finished the book yet.  But I've enjoyed what I've read so far.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE

Dec. 1st: https://brightlystreet.com/, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/


Friday, November 24, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: Love & Loss at Whitmore Manor by Anita Stansfield


ABOUT THE BOOK

For nearly three years, British Officer Tristan Whitmore fought bravely for King and Crown in America. But his loyalty came at a price, and after slowly recovering from battlefield injuries, it is finally time to return to his beloved England and his wife, Muriel. But there is no tender reunion at Whitmore Manor—instead, Tristan is stunned to learn of his wife's deceit in his absence and her unexpected death. And to add to the shocking blow, this devastating news is delivered by the last woman Tristan ever hoped to see again.

Olivia Halstead lost everything after the death of her father but found refuge with her cousin Muriel while Muriel's husband was at war. Now, with the loss of her cousin, Olivia feels she has trespassed too long on the hospitality of the family. But before she can depart, Muriel's husband returns, and Olivia's own thorny history with the man comes rushing in: years ago, theirs was a tender courtship—followed too soon by a bitter parting of ways. Now two people divided by past betrayal find an unforeseen chance for reconciliation. But when Tristan and Olivia find themselves on opposite sides of a revolution, will their clashing allegiances tear them apart forever?

REVIEW

As always, Stansfield creates a heartbreaking situation for her characters and then proceeds to throw in some more difficulties before her characters find their ending.  One of the things that I enjoy most about her books is how human and easy to relate to they are.  They have weaknesses and they make mistakes that create circumstances and consequences that they then have to live with.  In this book, the two main characters, Tristan and Olivia came close to marrying, until Olivia's cousin, Muriel interfered and turned Tristan against Olivia with her charm and beauty.  But now, Muriel's true character has been revealed and Tristan has to cope with the shock of learning what she was really like in addition to her death.

And Olivia's presence doesn't make things easier, nor does his father's illness, or the smuggling going on in the neighborhood.  But as Tristan and Olivia slowly realize that their feelings for each other are still alive, it appears that given time, peace might be restored at Whitmore Manor.  Until a secret that Olivia has been keeping, threatens to divide them once more.  As always, Stansfield has written a compelling and intricate story.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE
 
*Nov. 24th: https://joyinthemoments.wordpress.com, http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com


Thursday, November 16, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: For Castle and Crown by Sian Ann Bessey


ABOUT THE BOOK

After years spent fighting alongside King Richard in the crusades, Lord Edmund of Hawksford is finally returning to his ancestral home. But far from a joyful reunion, what awaits his is devastation. his elder brother is dead, killed in a tragic fire at Hawksford Castle—and the title of duke now falls to Edmund.

When he strives to rebuild the fire-scarred castle, Edmund learns that his was not the only life the fire shattered: his childhood friend Lady Phillipa survived the flames that took Edmund's brother, but badly burned, she has hidden herself away from those she loves. yet as the pair renews their acquaintance, they find that their affection runs deep—perhaps even deeper than they'd ever realized.

As Edmund and Pippa begin to question whether the fire was truly an accident, they must discover the truth of the past before they can plan for their future. While coming perilously close to the answers they seek, Edmund and Pippa find themselves at the mercy of a dangerous foe who will stop at nothing to lay claim on Hawksford—and he will destroy any who stand in his way.

REVIEW

Sian Ann Bessey has written a compelling story of love, loss, and struggle.  As Edmund returns home to face the disaster that occurred while he was away fighting for king and country with King Richard, he also must face responsibilities that he was never trained to handle.  Pippa, meanwhile, continues to heal from the injuries sustained in the devastating fire that caused so much harm. But when they meet again, the friendship from their childhood is renewed and they find great comfort in aiding each other.  But the danger to Hawksford remains and they must discover it's source before everything is lost.  Bessey has created some great characters who face some daunting challenges.  She does a great job creating a believable medieval setting full of interesting people and events.  The book provided a very engaging read.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE

*Nov. 17th: http://booksaresanity.blogspot.com/, http://heidi-reads.blogspot.com/, http://www.kindleandme.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

BLOG TOUR: The Nativity Pagaent by Neil K. Johnson


ABOUT THE BOOK

Would you rather read the nativity story or be a part of it? Using simple stage directions, easy-to-find props, and a script that’s straight from the scriptures, this book helps you act out the familiar story of the first Christmas for your friends and family. Start a new tradition this season with a simple pageant you’ll look forward to performing year after year.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 Neil K. Johnson taught school for 44 years–first drama, then English–and he loves kids. He was able to teach over 7,000, and as a result, many of them won awards for their writing and drama. He was chosen as the 2010 Utah English Teacher of the Year, and he was president of a state English and two state drama and speech teacher associations. Neil received his bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University and his master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin at Superior. He did doctoral work at the University of Utah and the University of Northern Colorado. He wrote The Drama Source Book and compiled three books of plays. Neil and his current wife Sharee both lost their first spouses to cancer. They married and blended their family of 15 kids, and they have 50 grandkids (and counting). Neil is very active in his church, and he loves to see the enactment of the nativity pageant at Christmastime. He knows many of the struggles to make the pageant meaningful, and he has tried to address them in this dramatization.

REVIEW

There is something special about the idea of putting on a nativity pageant.  And while there are a lot of resources available to help in putting on such a pageant, the scriptures being the best resource of course, this booklet keeps things simple enough to be put on at home, church, or in the community.  Most of the text comes right from the scriptures with song suggestions as well as stage directions included.  A great resource for those interested in putting on a nativity play.

 

Thursday, November 9, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: The Nobleman's Daughter by Jen Geigle Johnson


ABOUT THE BOOK

While British high society primps and plays, the impoverished citizens of London languish. But there are those fighting for the freedom of common citizens—including two members of the aristocracy who secretly champion revolution. In the drawing rooms of the upper class, Lady Amanda and Lord Nathaniel flirt and tease with the best of them as she pretends to win every heart in London for sport, and he, to conquer them. But in truth, their flirtation is merely a facade designed to keep their clandestine actions hidden from the ton—and from each other. When Nathaniel presents himself as a potential suitor, the attraction between the two is undeniable—but the faces they portray to the world are not enough to win each other's hearts.

While their crusade for London's poor unites them more deeply than they could imagine, Amanda and Nathaniel struggle to trust one another with their true ideals and identities. But when the call to action leads Amanda into the path of danger, she can only hope that Nathaniel will see through her frivolous pretense. Because now, only the aid of the suitor she loves most—but trusts least—can save her.

REVIEW

I've long enjoyed reading Regency historical fiction, especially romances (clean ones that is).  But like many genres, sometimes they start to all sound the same.  I'm happy to say though that this one is different.  Not that there isn't plenty of romance, which there is, and not that the character's aren't a little too good to be true (as they usually are), but in the circumstances that Lady Amanda and Lord Nathaniel choose to involve themselves in.  Coming from nobility both Lady Amanda and Lord Nathaniel have grown up surrounded by the luxuries of life.  And yet their experiences take them into the cause of freedom for those of the lower classes.  But most of the rest of the aristocracy doesn't look on such efforts with favor and so the two must, for their own safety, hide their efforts.

So while attraction between the two is alive from the time they meet, they do not at first trust each other with their secret work.  This creates tension and confusion, especially on the part of Lady Amanda.  I enjoyed reading about Amanda and Nathaniel, but I especially appreciated the historical background about a real event, a rather shocking, horrifying event that the characters experience.  An event that I had never heard of before reading this book.  And that is what makes this book especially good, learning about the past while enjoying the characters and the plot.

GIVEAWAY

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*Nov. 10th: http://lisaisabookworm.blogspot.com, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com  


Wednesday, November 8, 2017

BLOG TOUR: Lies Jane Austen Told Me by Julie Wright


ABOUT THE BOOK

Ever since Emma read Pride and Prejudice, she's been in love with Mr. Darcy and has regarded Jane Austen as the expert on all things romantic. So when it turns out that what her boyfriend Blake wants is more of a hook-up than a honeymoon, Emma is hurt, betrayed, and furious. She throws herself deeper into her work as CMO of Kinetics, only to find her job threatened when her boss brings in a consultant to help her expand the business to the East Coast. Her frustration turns to shock when that consultant turns out to be Blake's younger brother, Lucas.

Emma is determined not to fall for Lucas, but as she gets to know him, she realizes that Lucas is nothing like his brother. He is kind and attentive and spends his time and money caring for the less fortunate. But as perfect as Lucas seems, he clearly has his secrets. After all, there's an angry woman demanding money from him and a little girl who Lucas feels responsible for.

Realizing that her love life is as complicated as anything Jane Austen could have dreamed up, Emma must figure out the truth and soon—if she wants any hope of writing her own "happily ever after" ending.

REVIEW

Like so many women, Emma is a lover of Jane Austen's novels.  But her own romantic experiences haven't lived up to the ideals shared in Austen's books.  And after a fight with her boyfriend Blake, Emma is ready to drop those ideals from her vocabulary.  She doesn't expect meeting Blake's younger brother, Lucas, to change everything.  But as her feelings for Lucas deepen despite her best efforts, she's left to wonder if love is in her future, or if she's headed for more heartache.

I found Emma to be a very appealing character, similar to Austen's own Emma, except she's more aware of being judgmental toward others.  And Lucas is a sweetheart from the beginning.  But being the brother of Emma's ex-boyfriend and constantly reminding her of  Blake's good points doesn't encourage hope for any relationship.  And his issues with his biological sister and niece don't help things any. I think my favorite parts of the book though were the interactions between Emma and Lucas as they fall in love.  The context of the story was fascinating as well, reading about Emma's work as a CMO.

And the relationship between Lucas and his niece is a sweet one as he tries to protect her from his sister's problems.  The relationships between the characters were enjoyable and realistic and the best part of the book.  And the references to Jane Austen's works didn't hurt either as I'm also a fan.


Thursday, November 2, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: Our Family Christmas by Christie Gardiner


ABOUT THE BOOK

Draw closer to the Savior as you set aside a few minutes each day to celebrate the season with your family using this inspiring, fun-filled countdown to Christmas as your guide. From Christmas songs to holiday stories to activities for old and young alike, this compilation of Christ-centered ideas is designed with one goal in mind: to bring families closer together and closer to Christ this holiday season. Whether you're taking a quick moment to connect or are engaging in a longer opportunity to create memories, the stories, recipes, activities, and music on these pages are just the beginning of faith-affirming togetherness for families of all ages and stages during the Christmas season.

REVIEW

Gardiner has created a delightfully helpful and beautiful book with Our Family Christmas.  The book is divided into days, with each section containing a story that introduces the theme for that day as well as suggestions for crafts and/or recipes as well as a song.  These can be used however the reader sees fit.  I especially appreciated the inclusion of suggestions for longer and shorter family activities.  There are also suggestions for recording Christmas memories.  This is not only a beautifully designed book with gorgeous illustrations, slick pages, and a keepsake design, but the content is immensely helpful for those who want to celebrate Christmas with their families but just don't have the time or desire to invest in planning.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE

*Nov. 3rd: http://sweetlymadejustforyou.com/blog/, http://www.wishfulendings.com/, http://brooklynberrydesigns.com/, http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/


Thursday, October 26, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: Christmas Grace by Jennifer Moore, Krista Lynne Jensen, Anita Stansfield, & Chalon Linton


ABOUT THE BOOK

"Let Nothing You Dismay" by Jennifer Moore

After their childhood friendship blossomed into love, one young couple's whirlwind romance ended in bitter disappointment. Now, years later, can a long-overdue Christmas gift heal two wounded hearts?

"Christmas at Canterwood" by Krista Lynne Jensen

A charming new governess is determined to create a magical Christmas for her young charges. What follows is a season of warmth, laughter, and even the promise of an unanticipated love.

"Winter Angel" by Anita Stansfield

For generations, one small London bakery has carried on the sweet tradition of delivering bread to the impoverished. When the lovely baker meets a down-on-his luck stranger, her kindness will open the door to a bright friendship—and an astonishing discovery.

"Christmas Grace" by Chalon Linton

After suffering a heartbreaking loss, one woman returns home to honor the family tradition of staging a Christmas celebration for the surrounding village. But when a severe snowstorm hinders her plans, help and hope find her in the most unexpected of ways.

REVIEW

I have a special fondness for Christmas stories.  And a little romance never hurts. ;) Each of these four stories takes place during the Regency era and involve romance at Christmastime, two of my very favorite things.  No wonder then that I thoroughly enjoyed these stories of love and the power of the Christmas season.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE

*Oct. 27th: http://literarytimeout.blogspot.com/, http://reviewsfromtheheart.blogspot.com/, http://www.blogginboutbooks.com/


Thursday, October 19, 2017

BLOG TOUR w/ GIVEAWAY: 100 Favorite Verses from the Old Testament by Shauna Humphreys

100 favorite verses from the old testament   covercopy

ABOUT THE BOOK

Studying—and truly understanding—the Old Testament can feel like an insurmountable task. But in this wonderful compilation of 100 of the most beloved Old Testament verses, author Shauna Humphreys reminds readers that this sacred book of scripture is brimming with treasures of wisdom for those prepared to seek them. Presented with complementary spiritual insights, vibrant explanations, and personal applications, each verse will motivate readers to delve into these sacred and powerful teachings as never before. Whether used in personal study or incorporated into family discussions or Church lessons, this inspiring volume is sure to enlighten the mind and stir the heart.

REVIEW

In this compilation of gospel thoughts and insights, Humphreys has created a beautiful, thoughtful look at some of the most powerful verses from the Old Testament as well as from the Pearl of Great Price. Each scripture is highlighted on two pages with commentary from the author that includes additional scriptures as well as quotes from LDS Church leaders.  The design of the book makes it a wonderful choice for gift-giving with the soft, padded cover, gilt pages, and included bookmark.

GIVEAWAY

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TOUR SCHEDULE

 
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