Author Interview & Giveaway with Brandy Bruce

I’m excited to have joining us today Brandy Bruce. Last month I read and reviewed her latest book ‘The Last Summer(see review). This is a book you won’t want to miss!

BrandyBruceBrandy Bruce is a mom, a wife, a book editor, an author, and someone who really loves dessert. She’s the author of the novels Looks Like Love, The Romano Family Collection, and award-winning The Last Summer. Having worked in the publishing industry for more than a decade, Brandy currently works as a freelance book editor, when she’s not writing novels! Brandy, her husband, and their children make their home in the beautiful state of Colorado. She’s very active online and she loves to hear from readers. Sign up for Brandy’s newsletter via her blog!

Web Page // Goodreads // Amazon // Facebook // Twitter // Pinterest //

For those who may have not yet had the pleasure of reading this fantastic story, let me share with you the synopsis.

For twenty-something Sara Witherspoon and her group of friends, a perfect Southern summer includes lake-house getaways, wedding planning, outdoor concerts, and a dash of romance. But for these seven friends who love each other like family, this year, summer rolls in with changes for everyone.

Sara’s longtime crush, Luke, has been her best friend for as long as she has been a part of the group. When Luke begins seriously dating another of their friends, Sara’s forced to deal with her hurt and jealousy, while outwardly try to support them both.

While Sara comes to terms with her own heart and her friends’ relationships, an unexpected handsome pilot from North Carolina and an old flame are thrown into the mix. Knowing her heart suddenly becomes much more complicated.

But as time unfolds and friendships begin to unravel, Sara and the others are presented with the reality of what a season of change does to old friendships and new love interests.

Does growing older mean growing apart?

Thank you Brandy for visiting with us today, I’m always happy to spend time with authors and chat about books!

road-1072823_640Q:  What is your favorite season, and why?

Brandy:  I love fall so much! Specialty coffee drinks, sweaters and tall boots, pumpkins on doorsteps. One of the main reasons I love it is because of how much fun it is for my kids. They love dressing up for Halloween, carving pumpkins, and all the special Halloween/Thanksgiving cartoon specials on TV. We look forward to the first snowfall of the season every year. Fall is a season that ushers in all the best holidays and I love it. It just feels like magic for my family

Trisha:  Fall is a beautiful season, filled with lots of color and cooler temperatures, the harvest of good food. What’s not to love?!


Q:  What is the best part of your day?

Brandy:  When I go get Lily—my two-year-old—out of her crib. Truthfully, Lily can be a bit grouchy in the mornings, but not usually with me. When I open the door, her face lights up and it brings an automatic smile and warms my heart every single time. She says, “Good morning, Mama!” and I melt!

Trisha:  Awww… that is sweet!


book-863418_640Q:  What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

Brandy:  I love this question! The truth is that my oldest child (I have three) just turned nine. So ten years ago I had a little more time to read than I do now. I definitely squeeze in time, and I always have a TBR list happening. But as for what I was reading back then . . . Robin Gunn is one of my favorite authors and I loved her Glenbrooke series. I loved the O’Malley series by Dee Henderson so much. The Newpointe 911 series by Terri Blackstock. The Shunning trilogy by Beverly Lewis. Oh! The Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers killed me. When the Heart Cries by Cindy Woodsmall was beautiful. I liked a lot of the chick lit that was happening back then, such as Dreaming in Black and White by Laura Jensen Walker.

Trisha:  Those are some really great books, and a couple I need to add to my TBR!


mobile-616012_640Q:  If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?

Brandy:  I like all kinds of music. So you’d hear everything from the soundtrack to the TV series Outlander (gorgeous music) to Justin Bieber singing Despacito, to Eric Church singing country—and you’d even hear Pentatonix Christmas music! I love to listen to Christmas music while I edit, and I’ve had back to back freelance edits this summer.

Trisha:  I too enjoy listening to soundtracks. It’s so relaxing!


Q:  Did the plotline or the characters come first?

Brandy:  For my novel, The Last Summer, a couple of the main characters came first, with an overall plot idea connected.


heart-1908901_640Q:  Which character took you by surprise?

Brandy:  Lily. She’s my main character’s best girlfriend and her character changed through rewrites and revisions. She came into her own, I think you could say. And she ended up being one of my very favorites.

 

Q:  What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?

Brandy:  Oh, goodness, there were a few really late nights—and I don’t do well with late nights! I’m someone who’s usually out by eleven at the latest. But I remember working till the wee hours of the morning a couple of times.

Trisha:  I’m with you, by eleven, I’m nodding off.

pencil-918449_640Q:  What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

Brandy:  In my original draft (keep in mind that the original was written about 20 years ago, so there were many changes over the years!) the gang of friends went on a holiday trip out-of-state together. That was fun to write. But in later versions, it just didn’t work with timing and pacing and plot, so I had to cut it.

Trisha:  Brandy, thank you for visiting today. It was lot’s of fun chatting with you. Feel free to come back and visit again any time!

 

*** GIVEAWAY ***

Brandy is giving away 1 (one) e-copy of her book “The Last Summer”.  Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the giveaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page. You may return daily during the giveaway period to Tweet for bonus entries.

 To Enter the Giveaway: 

1.)  Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:
“What was your most memorable Summer?”

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.

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Author Interview & Giveaway with Angie Dicken

I am excited to have my newest Author friend Angie Dicken visiting with us today!

AngieDickenAngie Dicken is a third generation Greek American, the granddaughter of strong men and women who endured hardship to grow American roots. My Heart Belongs In Castle Gate, Utah is set near the birthplace of her grandfather, a Greek coal miner’s son, and published 100 years after his birth. Angie is a contributor to The Writer’s Alley blog and an ACFW member since 2010. She lives with her husband and four children in the Midwest where she enjoys exploring eclectic new restaurants and chatting with friends over coffee.

Web Page // Facebook // Twitter // Goodreads // Pinterest //

Angie recently released her debut book “The Outlaw’s Second Chance(see my review)

TheOutlawsSecondChanceWhen Cort Stanton and Aubrey Huxley try to claim the same land in the Oklahoma Land Run, Cort offers a deal–one that could help him keep his freedom. After taking the blame for his brother’s crime, Cort needs to lie low, so he gives Aubrey the land for her horse ranch…if she’ll hire him. Now he just has to avoid growing too close to the gorgeous seamstress, who can never know his secret.

Aubrey refuses to depend on any man, even one as handsome and kind as Cort. Yet, as they work together to make her dream a reality, it’s impossible to imagine life on the prairie without him. And though Aubrey knows Cort has secrets that stand between them, she can’t help but wish she could stake a claim on his heart.

Make sure to watch for Angie’s 2nd book “My Heart Belongs in Castle Gate, Utah” Coming out in November!

  My Heart Belongs in Castle Gate, Utah

Let’s start out with a few fun, getting-to-know-you questions and then chat about the latest book.

Trisha:  What is your favorite season, and why?

road-1072823_640Angie: I love fall in the Midwest. There’s just so much to do—like apple orchards, pumpkin patches, and bonfires—and the changing colors and weather are AMAZING!

Trisha:  Yes, Fall is pretty awesome! We have several grape vineyards near us and we can smell the grapes when we walk outside.

 

Trisha:  What is the best part of your day?

tree-1409101_640Angie: When I can drag myself out of bed before the kids, I love the quiet of early morning. But, I am also a night owl, so that makes it more difficult to enjoy waking up so early. 😉

Trisha:  Oh, I hear you! Waking up early isn’t always easy. But the quiet time and the beautiful sunrise make it worth the effort.

 

Trisha:  What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

books-315677_640Angie:  My all time favorite—the one that kept me up, and had me weeping for the characters after it was over—is Liz Curtis Higgs Thorn In My Heart. Just so good. Of course, if you’d like to go back even further…my first exposure to Christian Fiction and favorites from childhood on–The Chronicles of Narnia.

Trisha:  Yes, I love Liz Curtis Higgs books!

 

Trisha:  If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?

mobile-616012_640Angie:  Nora Jones. I LOVE her. Her music never disappoints.

Trisha:  I enjoy listening to Nora Jones on rainy days. Her music is relaxing and soothing, like a gentle rain.

 

 

Trisha:  Did the plotline or the characters come first?

desk-2158142_640Angie:  For The Outlaw’s Second Chance, I would say the plotline came first. I wanted to write a Land run story.

Trisha:  The beginning of your book with the Land Run, reminded me a bit of the Land Run at the end of the movie Far and Away.

 

Trisha:  Which character took you by surprise?

guy-2609361_640Angie:  This is a great question. The character that kind of “evolved” was the heroine’s brother, Ben. He was her past and present clashing to threaten her future. But, I love how he seemed so one-sided in my initial writings, and then grew to be more complex.

Trisha:  Ben surprised me in the story also!

 

Trisha:  What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?

coffee-2440074_640Angie:  Ooooh….me? Night owl extraordinaire? I’d have to say…3 or 4? But that might also include brainstorming sessions with my fabulous crit partner, Ashley Clark.

Trisha:  Wow! You are a night owl extraordinaire! My limit is usually 1 am.

 

Trisha:  What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

pencil-918449_640Angie:  In the original, I had Aubrey planning on running at night. She was going to be a “sooner” to the fullest definition of the word. But, I like the way it is soooo much better thanks to the suggestions of my editor at Love Inspired Historical!

Trisha:  That was a good change, I like the way it’s written! Thank you, Angie for spending time chatting with us today! It was fun getting to know more about you and your debut book.  I look forward to joining you at the Facebook Launch party tomorrow!

Thanks for having me on your blog, Trisha! I am so excited to see you at my FB launch party on the 12th. For all who want to join in the fun and a chance for winning a giveaway, visit www.facebook.com/dicken.angie and rsvp to the pinned event.

FacebookParty

*** GIVEAWAY ***

Angie is giving away 1 (one) copy of her debut book “The Outlaw’s Second Chance” The winner may choose a paper copy or e-copy (paper copy USA only). Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the giveaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page. Return daily during the giveaway period to tweet for bonus entries.

 To Enter the Giveaway: 

1.)  Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:
“Have you heard about the Land Run? Do you think you would have participated?”

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.

 

***** GIVEAWAY ENDED *****
Winner is: Tami L.

 

Bonus:

A Month Long Giveaway: Post a Shelfie – Watch your local Walmart, Target & Book sellers for The Outlaw’s Second Chance. Snap a picture and share it!

Shelfie

 

 

 

Author Interview & Giveaway with Lori Benton

I am on cloud 9 today! I have been looking forward to our visit with Lori Benton for weeks! I am totally over here fangirling right now! I’ve been a huge fan of Lori’s since her first book “Burning Sky” was released in 2013.

LoriBenton2

Lori Benton was raised east of the Appalachian Mountains, surrounded by early American history going back three hundred years. Her novels transport readers to the eighteenth century, where she brings to life the Colonial and early Federal periods of American history. When she isn’t writing, reading, or researching, Lori enjoys exploring the Oregon wilderness with her husband. She is the author of Burning Sky, recipient of three Christy Awards, The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn, and The Wood’s Edge.

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Amazon // Pinterest

Today Lori has joined us to talk about her latest book release Many Sparrows. I had the honor to receive an ARC of this captivating story (you can read my full review here). Trust me when I say that you will not want to miss this story!

Many SparrowsMany Sparrows
WaterBrook Press (Penguin Random House)
August 29 2017  
ISBN-10: 1601429940 
ISBN-13: 978-1601429940

Either she and her children would emerge from that wilderness together, or none of them would…In 1774, the Ohio-Kentucky frontier pulses with rising tension and brutal conflicts as Colonists push westward and encroach upon Native American territories. The young Inglesby family is making the perilous journey west when an accident sends Philip back to Redstone Fort for help, forcing him to leave his pregnant wife Clare and their four-year old son Jacob on a remote mountain trail.

When Philip does not return and Jacob disappears from the wagon under the cover of darkness, Clare awakens the next morning to find herself utterly alone, in labor and wondering how she can recover her son…especially when her second child is moments away from being born.

Clare will face the greatest fight of her life, as she struggles to reclaim her son from the Shawnee Indians now holding him captive. But with the battle lines sharply drawn, Jacob’s life might not be the only one at stake. When frontiersman Jeremiah Ring comes to her aid, can the stranger convince Clare that recovering her son will require the very thing her anguished heart is unwilling to do—be still, wait and let God fight this battle for them?

IMG_0972
Welcome Lori, I’m beyond thrilled to have you here today chatting with us about your new book ‘Many Sparrows’.  Before we delve into questions about the book, lets start off with a few getting to know you questions.

road-1072823_640Q: What is your favorite season, and why?

Lori: Oh, hands down, it’s autumn. I love the woodland colors (brown is my favorite color), though of course, they aren’t as spectacular where I live, in Oregon, as they are in the eastern states. I love the invigoration of cooler air after our long hot summer. I love the fog! It never depresses me. I find it cozy and good writing weather. I also love the mood it gives my landscape photos. I love fall clothes, chunky sweaters and hooded jackets and boots and flannel. I love the smell of wood fires on the air. Oh my, is it fall yet?

Trisha:  Fall is a beautiful time of year and such a welcome after a hot summer.

 

cobweb-1025021_640Q: What is the best part of your day?

Lori: I like the morning—early, mid, late, all of it. It’s my quiet time, then my writing time. My best “brain” hours are morning hours.

 

Trisha: I love watching the sun come up, every day it’s different. No two are alike.

 

 

book-863418_640Q: What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

Lori:  Looking back I’d say Francine Rivers’ early works, especially The Mark of the Lion—they had a huge influence on me when I began writing CF, they broadened the scope. And of course Christy by Catherine Marshall, and Julie, which never seems to get as much attention but which I enjoyed nearly as much. Liz Curtis Higgs’ Scottish series which starts with A Thorn in My Heart were favorites. The early fantasy works of Stephen Lawhead, his Pendragon Cycle, awakened my love of all things Celtic and my interest in Welsh history. The first novel I wrote, back in my early twenties, was in that genre.

Trisha:  Those are some fantastic books. I’m a huge fan of Liz Curtis Higgs also!

 

mobile-616012_640Q: If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?

Lori: You’d find a fairly eclectic mix of traditional Celtic (Scottish mostly) music including songs in Gaelic, to songs by Apologetix (a Christian parody band) to Mark Knopfler (formerly of Dire Straits) to bands like Of Monsters and Men, Lumineers, Lord Huron, The Frozen Ocean, Oh Hellos, Wailing Jennys, and some worship music.  There’d be some Josh Groban and Mary Fahl and Peter Hollens in there too. And sound tracks to movies like Last of the Mohicans.

Trisha:  I enjoy listening to Celtic music also, and love Last of the Mohicans!

 

blur-1869579_640Q: Did the plotline or the characters come first?

Lori: Neither. Both. It’s an organic process and a little different with each book. For Many Sparrows, I’m pretty sure it was the historical backdrop, Dunmore’s War, that started it all. Then came characters, Jeremiah Ring first. My earliest working title for this book was The Frontiersman since I had to call the file something! But story development is a long process (years sometimes) with plenty of time for plot ideas to start slipping in while I’m daydreaming character.  And vice versa.

 

na-woman-2Q: Which character took you by surprise?

Lori:  A secondary character, Rain Crow. For the longest time, I didn’t see her as a real person, I will confess. She was my villain. My bad guy. But at some point, I realized that wasn’t fair—to her or to the story. So I took some time to really delve into her past, her heart—why it was so important for her to hold onto Clare’s son—and came out the other side absolutely in sympathy with her, even though her heart’s desire stands in opposition to my main character, Clare’s. Which made it tougher for me as a writer to resolve their issues satisfactorily.  I got stretched and readers got a far more compelling story than if I’d taken the easy way.

Trisha: I really liked the direction you took with Rain Crow.  I admit, I didn’t like her at first, but then I began to see that she carried a history of deep hurt. Seeing Clare with Rain Crow made me appreciate the strength of Clare’s character even more.

 

coffee-2440074_640Q: What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?

Lori:  I don’t work at night (my writing brain is pretty much fried by 3 pm), so I’ve never stayed up late. I’m an early riser, so by 8 pm most nights I’m starting to think about sleep. Better to ask what’s the earliest I ever got up to work on this story? That answer would be 3-4am.

Trisha:  I don’t believe that I’ve ever willingly gotten up that early. I’m impressed!

 

pencil-918449_640Q: What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

Lori:  Nearly 40,000 words all told! While most of that was trimmed in bits and pieces from all over the place, there was one large chunk that hit the cutting room floor, a much longer version of Clare and Jeremiah’s stay in Wheeling Settlement, in which I introduced a group of female settlers that Clare falls in with during her attempt to locate Jacob, and an older woman who offered her counsel. But since we never saw these characters again after Clare leaves Wheeling, it was decided they slowed the story down at that point so they remain nameless women doing their washing at the creek.

 

Thank you Lori for visiting with us today, it was a pleasure to get to know you better and to chat about ‘Many Sparrows’.  Please feel free to come back any time and visit with us again!

Friends, Lori is giving away 1 autographed, printed copy of her latest book ‘Many Sparrows’.  The giveaway is only open to those in the continental USA. Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the giveaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page.

 To Enter the Giveaway: 

1.)  Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:
“What is the best part of your day?”

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.

*****GIVEAWAY ENDED*****
Winner is: Trixi

Author Interview & Giveaway with Caryl McAdoo

I’m overjoyed to be visiting today with my new author friend Caryl McAdoo. Caryl is such a sweet lady, with a big giving heart, and a deep love for our Creator & Savior!

CarylMcAdoo  Born in California, Caryl McAdoo got to Texas in time to celebrate her first birthday. As a Dallas seventh grader, she remembers a homework essay on ‘What will you be doing in 2000?’ Looking into the future, Caryl saw herself as an inter-galactically famous author, streaking from planet to planet signing books. She laughs, “But I didn’t start writing again until the late ’80s, then was so blessed to find the DFW Writers’ Workshop in ’93.”

Her first book debuted ’99, then for the next nine years, she averaged a title a year from four presses: two non-fiction, four novels, and three mid-grade chapter books. In March 2014, her first historical Christian romance VOW UNBROKEN (see my review) debuted from Howard Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster.

In April, she re-released LADY LUCK’S A LOSER (formerly The Apple Orchard Bed and Breakfast) with a new chapter. In September HEARTS STOLEN, book two in the historical romance series, and in November A LITTLE LOWER THAN THE ANGELS, her first Biblical fiction series The Generations. So four titles in 2014

Book three of the historicals HOPE REBORN debuted in January to start off a whale of a new year with eleven new titles planned–God willing. THE PREACHER’S FAITH comes in February, Caryl’s first contemporary in Red River Romance series. THEN THE DELUGE COMES, volume two of The Generations, follows in March.

Also known as Grami, she loves fourteen grandsugars, and she and O’Pa—her high school sweetheart and husband of forty-five years—have been rearing four of the grandsons for the past twelve years sending two off to college in 2014. She’s dedicated to advancing God’s Kingdom through her novels, praise and worship—He frequently gives her new songs—prayers, and her testimony.

She believes all good things are from Him and that her books will minister His love, mercy, and grace to her readers. Irving, Texas remained her life long home until 2008 when she and Ron followed God’s leading to Red River County in the far northeast corner of the Lone Star State.

Web Page // Facebook // Twitter // Goodreads //

10 covers

Friends, Please join me in giving a warm joyful welcome to my friend Caryl McAdoo!

Trisha, I want to thank you so much for inviting me to visit today. If there’s anything I love, it’s visiting, especially with a new friend.

Caryl, I’ve been looking forward to our fun interview! Let’s get started with a few fun questions and then talk about your wonderful books. 

Q: What is your favorite season, and why?

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERACaryl:  Spring, spring, and some more spring. I love it for all the new life. Since a child, I’ve loved green. I used to say because it was the color of my eyes, my birthstone—emerald for May, and money, but as an adult, I had to replace that last reason. Didn’t want to sound like a moneygrubber, so I changed it to it’s the color of Spring which represents new life.

Winter is cold and gray, and Spring comes along and makes the world beautiful again. Plus, new babies start popping up everywhere, and what woman doesn’t adore new baby anythings?

GramimilkingVivianI live in a farm and ranching community—Red River County, in far Northeast Texas—and I love how white the new Charolais calves are, and all the new foals, (horses are my favorite animals), and oh, the kids! I raised a herd of about eighty Nigerian dwarf goats, and kidding season was the best! I milked about thirteen at a time and thought my thumbs would surely fall off!

It’s the season of my birth and I suppose the temperature warming up makes Spring just perfect for me. While I’m glad for all the seasons—just about the time you get tired of whichever one it is—the next one comes along . . . and they all have their positives, but IMHO, Spring is the only one with no negatives!

Trisha:  Spring is my favorite also. The beautiful flowers, and sunshine, birds singing, everything seems fresh and new.

 

Q:  What is the best part of your day?

baby-1266117_640Caryl:  My favorite part of the day is when I lay down to rest. Waking up is okay, but I go go go all day, and at night, I just love getting prone in my soft bed and cuddling to my sweet husband. He checks every morning to see if my books have any new reviews and reads them to me, too. That’s a close second, finding out how much a reader loved one of my stories. 

Trisha:  Ahhh, yes! Sleep is a wonderful thing. Is it nap time yet? 😉

 

Q:  What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

book-863418_640Caryl:  I don’t have to think twice on this! It’s is such an easy question because I love Bodie Thoene’s series—all of them! The Zion Covenant and the Zion Chronicles were my favorites since they took me to Jerusalem, the only place in the world I long to go.

I remember being on the bus in New York City taking a break from a tradeshow at the Javits Center. I had all the people around me giggling as I could not stop myself from laughing at the scene I was reading. Bodie’s books all make me laugh aloud and cry so much that I couldn’t read the blurry words. I had to quit reading until I could stop crying. To my way of thinking, a story can’t get any better than that.  

 Trisha: I have read a few of Bodie Thoene’s books. It’s been quite a while!

 

Q:  If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?

mobile-616012_640Caryl:  Most likely that would be Kari Jobe. She sings in my key and her music takes me straight to the Throne Room of the Most High King. My heart is to praise and worship God, to extol His majesty, and heap the glory due Him through the way I live my life. There’s no one like Him, not one to even compare. I’ve never met Kari—she also went to school at Christ For The Nations with my precious niece—but I’m certain we are of like heart. 

Trisha:  Kari Jobe is a wonderful singer. I hope you get to attend a concert and meet her soon!

 

Q:  Did the plotline or the characters come first?

51kh5E9Sg-L._SL250_Caryl:  Good question . . . don’t guess I’ve thought about this, but as I do . . . It has to be the characters. I usually use a crisis that leads to a bad decision or a bad decision that leads to a crisis to open a story, throwing my point-of-view character into the thick of it.

At that point in a new work, I have no idea about the plot or where the story is going. But I’ve created that character and from then on, she—or he—is a close friend I come to love. The more I write, the closer we become.

I tell you, Trisha. I can’t imagine leaving the Buckmeyers, Baylors, and Nightingales behind when Book Ten in my family saga, CHIEF OF SINNERS, launches in September  I’ve announced it as the last Texas Romance, but then there’s that precious little boy named David . . .

Trisha:  I’m looking forward to reading Chief of Sinners.  I’d love to read David’s story also!

 

Q:  Which character took you by surprise?

HopeRebornCaryl:  One of my favorite characters definitely took me by surprise, and that would be Millicent May Meriwether, the heroine of Hope Reborn. She’s a very successful New York dime novelist, bored with the same-o same-o heroes and heroines. Reading the newspaper one morning, she sees an article about a Texas Ranger who’s brought an Indian Chief in to stand trial for his atrocities and decides on the spot, she’s got to interview him to fashion her next novel’s male lead.

I loved writing about a writer! And even MORE fun, she writes the same stories I write! She titles her novel where Henry Buckmeyer and Sue Baylor fall in love THE GRANGER. Simon and Schuster’s Christian division, Howard Books published that same story I titled VOW UNBROKEN (book one in my Texas Romance series. My book two HEARTS STOLEN became her THE RANGER). Doesn’t that sound like so much fun?

My husband thinks of all my heroines, I’m most like May. 

 Trisha:  That does sound like a super fun character, and she’s wearing your favorite color!

 

Q:  What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?

2015 ThanksgivingCaryl:  Four o’clock in the morning? I’ve always been quite the night owl. The house is quiet and I’m never interrupted. Until this past January, O’Pa and I had been rearing four grandsons. We got them back in 2002 when the baby was born; he came home to us from the hospital. His brothers were three, four, and six.

This is the first time since we were nineteen years old that we haven’t had children in our home. I spread my own four out, and then we took in the little boys the same year our youngest left for college. I’m sixty-seven, that’s a lot of years with noisy, needy, beloved children! See why I’ve got that night-working habit? 

 Trisha:  4 am?! Wow! My eyes start going blurry around midnight and I know it’s time to give them a rest. 4 boys will keep you busy!

 

Q:  What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

01 frontSMCaryl:  Sad, sad, sad. In VOW UNBROKEN, book one, a major character is Blue Dog. Ron and I had written a series for children The River Bottom Ranch Stories wherein we ‘talk’ for the animals—write from their points of view. So, ‘speaking’ for Blue Dog seemed only natural. Not that the dog talked, but I got into his head and wrote from his point of view.

My agent, Mary Sue Seymore remarked that she’d never been in a dog’s head before and really enjoyed it, but when she sold the manuscript to Simon and Schuster, my new editor didn’t so much agree and asked that the scene be written only from Sue or Henry’s POV. And so it was cut, and that made me sad. Blue Dog was an amazing animal. His progenies are mentioned throughout the series.

Trisha:  This sounds like a great adventure story for kids!  I can imagine that your Grandsugars love hearing you read it it to them.

VowUnbrokenTrisha, this was so much fun and your questions, so out of the ordinary, were great! I thank you again for having me over. I thoroughly enjoyed myself!

Thank you Caryl! It has sure been fun spending time chatting with you and getting to know you better.  Please do come visit again!

Friends, Caryl is giving away 1 autographed, printed copy of her book ‘Vow Unbroken’.  The giveaway is only open to those in the continental USA. Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the giveaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page.

 

 To Enter the Giveaway:

1.)  Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:

“What is your favorite children’s book?”

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.

*****GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED *****


CONGRATUATIONS:

Jeanne C.

Author Interview & Giveaway with Roseanna M. White

I’m excited to have visiting with us today Roseanna M. White.  The first book I read of Roseanna’s was ‘Ring Of Secrets (the culper ring), and I’ve been hooked ever since! Roseanna is generously giving away an autographed copy of her latest book “A Name Unknown (Shadows over England #1)”.

RoseannaJuly2016-185x300Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of a slew of historical novels and novellas, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to make their way into her novels…to offset her real life, which is blessedly boring.

Being educated at St. John’s Collete (the Great Books School) taught Roseanna to ask questions, to value conversation, and to never accept the simple answer without exploring it for herself. She and her family make their home in the mountains of West Virginia where she and her husband both grew up. Roseanna is a member of ACFW, a frequent speaker at writers events and also small groups of readers, and an unabashed email addict.

Web page // Goodreads // Facebook // Twitter // Pinterest

I recently finished reading A Name Unknown (Shadows over England #1). If you haven’t yet picked up this book, you should!  (click here to read my review)

ANU

Edwardian Romance and History Gains a Twist of Suspense

Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins that helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they concentrate on stealing high-value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. But when Rosemary must determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany, she is in for the challenge of a lifetime. How does one steal a family’s history, their very name?

Peter Holstein, given his family’s German blood, writes his popular series of adventure novels under a pen name. With European politics boiling and his own neighbors suspicious of him, Peter debates whether it might be best to change his name for good. When Rosemary shows up at his door pretending to be a historian and offering to help him trace his family history, his question might be answered.

But as the two work together and Rosemary sees his gracious reaction to his neighbors’ scornful attacks, she wonders if her assignment is going down the wrong path. Is it too late to help him prove that he’s more than his name?

ANUgraphic

Welcome, Roseanna, I’m so happy to have you visiting with us today!  Let’s start out with a few getting to know you questions, and then we can talk about your latest book!

 

spring-bird-2295431_640Q: What is your favorite season, and why?

Roseanna:  Spring. I love seeing new life sprouting up and those first warm days—before the humidity and big heat of summer set in.

Trisha:  Spring is also my favorite. After a long cold northern winter, to watch the snow melt into green grass and see the first flowers; it can’t be beat!

 

early-spring-2122419_640Q: What is the best part of your day?

Roseanna:  Early, early morning. I rise at 5:30, and I just love that first hour when it’s just me, my coffee, my Bible, and my writing. =)

Trisha:  Wow, you are an early riser! Of course I can’t really say much, I get up at 6:00.
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Q:  What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

Roseanna:  Some that really stick out to me from that range (a bit newer than 10, but you know) are Trish Perry’s The Guy I’m Not Dating, Julie Lessman’s A Passion Most Pure, and Lisa Samson’s The Passion of Mary Margaret. These are books that have stuck with me for humor, romance, and spirituality all these years. In the older-than-10 realm, gotta go with Francine Rivers—The Mark of the Lion trilogy and Atonement Child, especially.

Trisha:  Those are some really good ones! I knew you had good taste in books!
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Q:  If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?

Roseanna:   Classical and Big Band selections. =)

Trisha:  Great taste in music too!

 

desk-2158142_640Q: Did the plotline or the characters come first?

Roseanna:  I had a few general background sorts of plot points—that I wanted my hero to be of German heritage, not a good speaker, a fabulous writer. That my heroine needed to be a thief. But I’m very much a character-driven writer, so the real story came together as I fleshed out my characters, for sure!
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Q:   Which character took you by surprise?

Roseanna:  One of Rosemary’s little sisters, Olivia. I’d already mentioned her briefly in the beginning, and then I decided that she needed to have a bit of a tragedy befall in order to keep Rosemary on the track she needed to be on. I had no idea at first how important she would end up being to Rosie and the story!

Trisha:  I liked Olivia, she was a fun addition.  I can’t wait to read Rosie’s story!
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Q:   What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?

Roseanna:  Oh, goodness. I am not a night owl, LOL. So no later than 10 p.m., I’m sure. My brain is mush after that!

Trisha:  I’m with you, I start to shut down after 10 p.m. But occasionally I have been known to stay up late.
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Q:  What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

Roseanna:  I actually had to add more than I cut—strange for a first draft that was rather long to begin with! So something that wasn’t in the first draft that ended up being . . . two things, actually. The secret society, and the plum at the end (I was just telling my kids this morning about the plum saving the day, LOL.)

Trisha:  I really enjoyed the plum scene.  I’m glad you added it!

 

Thank you so much Roseanna for joining us today. It was fun to chatting with you and getting to know you a little better. Please feel free to come visit again any time!

Friends, Roseanna is offering to giveaway 1 autographed, printed copy of her latest book ‘A Name Unknown’.  The giveaway is only open to those in the continental USA. Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the givaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page.

To Enter the Giveaway:

1.)  Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:
“What is your favorite season and why?”

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.

*Note:  Receive daily entry points for tweeting about the giveaway, buy using the rafflecopter entry form. 

 

***** The Giveaway Has Ended *****
Winner is: Lynne F.

 

 

 

 

‘Grounded Hearts’ Giveaway and Blog Tour

What do you get when you mix World War II, a brave midwife, a wounded pilot, and a risky secret? Jeanne M. Dickson’s new historical fiction novel, Grounded Hearts. When midwife Nan O’Neil finds a wounded young Canadian pilot at her door, she knows she’s taking a huge risk by letting him in. Still, something compels Nan to take in “flyboy” Dutch Whitney, an RAF pilot whose bomber has just crashed over County Clare. While she tends to his wounds and gives him a secret place of refuge, the two begin to form a mutual affection-and an unbreakable bond.

About the book:

In the midst of World War II, Ireland has declared herself neutral. Troops found on Irish soil must be reported and interned, no matter which side they are fighting for. When midwife Nan O’Neil finds a wounded young Canadian pilot at her door, she knows she’s taking a huge risk by letting him in. Not only is she a widow living alone, but if caught harboring a combatant, she’ll face imprisonment.

Still, something compels Nan to take in “flyboy” Dutch Whitney, an RAF pilot whose bomber has just crashed over County Clare. While she tends to his wounds and gives him a secret place of refuge, the two begin to form a mutual affection—and an unbreakable bond.

But Nan has another secret, one that has racked her with guilt since her husband’s death and made her question ever loving again. As Nan and Dutch plan his escape, can he help restore her faith?

My Review:

This book starts off strong. With realistic characters and action packed adventure, you will find yourself smack dab in the center of the action.

I appreciated the history and research that went into make this story come to life, and I enjoyed learning more about how Ireland and it’s people experienced World War II.

Nan is a strong heroine. You quickly come to understand why she makes some of the choices she makes. Although, there were several times that I wished I could go inside the book and give her a good strong talking to. Nan feels like she has to earn forgiveness, and with that feeling she never feels like she has done enough to earn it.

Dutch is as handsome as he is patient and kind. He’s the perfect yin to Nan’s yang. Dutch is fighting his own history and struggles, yet he is willing to reach out and help others.

For me the tempo of the story is a little slower toward the end, and there was not as much character growth as I would have preferred.

(I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write a positive review. The thoughts an opinions expressed are my own.)

About the Author:

jeannebiophoto_origJeanne was born into an Irish-American family, the only girl in a family with four brothers. Her Irish grandmother lived with them, and was a constant source of stories about life in Ireland and the saints and ancestors long gone from this earth. She credits her mother, her aunts, and grandmother for her love of storytelling. Today she lives in Coastal San Diego with her fabulous husband, her two wonderful girls, and a dozen disobedient rose bushes.

Jeanne writes romances set in WWII Ireland and also contemporary romances either set in Ireland or there’ll be Irish/Irish American characters.

Web Page // Twitter // Facebook // Goodreads

Join Jeanne in celebrating the release of her new book by entering to win the Celtic Knots Giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on July 31. The winner will be announced August 1 on the Litfuse blog.

Please visit the Landing page for this tour at:

Interview, Excerpt & Giveaway with Sarah Monzon – Author of “All of You”

I’m am beyond excited to have Sarah Monzon here with us today to chat about her latest book “All Of You” and to share a excerpt from her book (Warning: you may need a fan or your fainting couch!).  Oh, and did I mention Sarah is also giving away a digital copy of her book? You are in for a special treat!

SarahSarah Monzon is a Navy chaplain’s wife and a stay at home mom to the two cutest littles in the world. Playing pretend all day with them isn’t enough, she spends the evenings after their heads hit the pillow to create her own imaginary characters. When she isn’t in the world of make believe, she can be found in the pine forests of western Washington taking care of her family, fostering friendships, and enjoying all the adventures each day brings.

Her debut novel, The Isaac Project, skyrocketed to Amazon bestseller status while her Sophomore book, Finders Keepers, has finaled in contests such as the Inspy Awards and received a 4 star review from Romantic Times.

Web Page // Goodreads // Facebook // Twitter // Pinterest // Amazon

About “All Of You

AOYMaryland, Present Day
Jacqueline Rogers can rebuild anything…except the shambles of her past. A restorer of vintage planes, she’s worked hard to earn the reputation of being one of the guys. The last thing she needs is a former Navy pilot fighting his own inner demons stepping in to defend her from dangers she thought she’d outrun long ago. Some battles must be fought alone.

After a freak accident severs Lieutenant Michael “Finch” Carrington’s dreams, as well as two limbs, he’s left with nothing but a fragile faith and a duty-bound promise to watch out for his friend’s baby sister. A promise she insists is as unnecessary as it is unappreciated. But when she turns the tables and begins to weld together the broken parts of his life, it may be his heart that is in need of protection.

England, 1942
With the world at war yet again, Alice Galloway rejects her father’s traditional expectations and offers her piloting expertise to the Air Transport Auxiliary. She may be a woman in a man’s world, but when she overhears key intelligence, she must find the strength to transcend boundaries and her own fears. Or countless people may die.

Sometimes the past reaches forward to bring hope to the future. (My Review) 

* * * *  Excerpt * * * *

(note:  Heroine: Jacqueline Rogers, nickname “Jack”)

Knuckles rasped against the hangar’s sheet-metal walls, and she looked up from her project. Michael Carrington hobbled in, an Under Armour shirt pulling against his chest and running pants hanging loose from his hips. The top of a white paper bag bunched between his palm and the crutch’s handle, and the stump of his arm pressed two Jamba Juice paper cups against his chest.
Jack dropped the staple gun on top of the pilot’s chair and rushed over, grabbing first the drinks, then the to-go bag. “What are you doing here?”
He grimaced. “Good morning to you too.”
She deposited the food on the workbench and turned toward him, hands on hips. “Good morning, but I thought we agreed I didn’t need a babysitter.”
Michael sat and lifted a bagel from the bag. He reached back in for a plastic knife and a small travel-size container of cream cheese. Using the table as leverage, he peeled back the wrapping and then picked up the knife. Every swipe through the cream cheese sent the small container scurrying across the wooden table.
Jack huffed and grabbed the bagel and cream cheese, yanking the knife from Michael’s grip. She smeared the spread over his plain bagel and then placed it in front of him.
Michael stared at the bagel, then lifted his head slowly, his eyes piercing through her. “Neither do I.”
She looked away, shame washing over her. How thoughtless can you get? Growing up with brothers, she knew one thing at least—men needed to be treated as men. Not as helpless children who couldn’t do for themselves or others. That was the truth of any regular Joe out there. Military men? Especially those highly trained in a competitive field such as aviation? Yeah. She would have insulted him less if she’d spit in his face.
And for what? Her pride? The justification behind the flash of frustration of his continued hovering presence died an agonizing death.
“I’m sorry,” she whispered, looking down at her hands.
“Forgiven.”
A to-go cup with a green straw entered her line of vision.”
“Banana Berry smoothie?”
The chilled drink cooled her palm as she wrapped her hand around the beverage. “Thanks.” She offered him a half smile.
Michael took a bite of bagel, cream cheese sticking to his upper lip. Jack’s smile lifted a little higher. Far be it from her to emasculate him again by handing him a napkin.
“What’s so funny?”
Jack pointed to her own lips, signaling he had something on his.
Michael’s gaze lowered to her mouth, held there.
Her heart skipped a beat as if it had decided to play hopscotch right then and there. She should say something, do something. Divert his attention. Because whatever had flashed through his eyes shook her foundation.
Interest? In her? Maybe she had only imagined the look. It had blinked on and turned off faster than a lightning bug’s glow in the dusk of summer.
His gaze met hers. “Kissing friends?” He winked. “I’m not sure that’s what Geyser had in mind, but who am I to argue?”

* * * * * *

Welcome, Sarah;  It is wonderful to get to chat with you today! That excerpt….SIGH!  We may need to pause for a moment and let the warm fuzzy feelings simmer a bit before moving on to our interview!

Q:   What is your favorite season, and why?
road-1072823_640Sarah:   There are things about each season that I love and I’ve lived in a lot of different regions of the US (South, Midwest, PNW) so my love of the seasons changes as much as they do. When I lived in Florida, I loved winter. It was the only time the heat wasn’t quite so unbearable, although it never truly felt like winter (winter must have snow). When I lived in Michigan, I loved spring. The flowers. The trees budding. The days growing in warmth. Right now, I live in WA and I am loving summer. Clear blue skies with breathtaking views of mountain vistas. If I *had* to choose just one, though, it would probably be fall. When the temperatures drop to a chill, boots and sweaters coming out as leaves change colors on the trees and fall. Toasty, comfortable, beautiful.

Trisha:  Fall is beautiful; we live not far from several large vineyards, I love the smell of the grapes in the air!

 

Q:   What is the best part of your day?
baby-1266117_640Sarah:
   Do you want a “nice” answer or an honest one? LOL. Will you think I’m awful if I say my favorite time is when the kids go to bed? I love my kids, I do! And I love doing things with them all day, but they are five and three and have 20x the amount of energy that I do, they never stop talking, and they bicker like siblings do. Some days I count down the hours to bedtime. That said, I couldn’t imagine my days looking any better, either.

Trisha:  LOL! I completely understand. You are not awful at all! After my son’s bedtime is my favorite also, because it’s quiet and I can just unwind and hear myself think.

 

Q:   What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?
book-863418_640Sarah:
   It’s almost easier to say who were some of my favorite authors from 10 years ago. LOL. I love Lori Wick. I refuse to pick just one of her books.

I’m also going to say Siri Mitchell, although she is a current author, I simply adore her early works like “Chateau of Echoes”, “Kissing Adrien”, and “Cubicle Next Door.”

But then there are the Corrie Belle Hollister series and the Stonewyke books by Micheal Phillips and Judith Pella.

The memories! There are some seriously good books out there from decades past!

Trisha: Those are some great books. Brings back good memories!

 

Q:    If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?
mobile-616012_640Sarah:
   You’d definitely find Rend Collective, Lauren Daigle, Mercy Me, and other worship leaders.

Trisha:  Those are some excellent selections!

 

Q:    Did the plot-line or the characters come first?
Sarah:    Well, since this is the second book in the Carrington series, I knew the story was going to be about Michael Carrington and because such all of the Carrington family was already established. I also knew I wanted the historical thread to be WWII. Everything developed from there.

Trisha:  I loved Michael’s story! I’m excited to see what you have in store for Adam.

Q:    Which character took you by surprise?
Sarah:    Henry. I originally thought he was going to be a Royal Air Force pilot, but he refused to talk to me a few days, the stubborn man, because he was *not* a pilot, he was a journalist. He surprised me two more times after that too, when he showed me more of his identity, but I don’t want to give any spoilers. Shhh…

Trisha:  Yes! Henry surprised me also. I didn’t see it coming!

 

Q:    What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?
Sarah:    Actually, not that late. I don’t function well at night. Never have. But that’s only exponentiated after motherhood. I’m pretty much brain dead at 8pm.

Trisha:  I usually stay up later than I should… reading!

 

Q:    What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?
Sarah:    This would be a great time to add a juicy deleted scene, except…I don’t have one. I didn’t take anything out of the manuscript after the rough draft, but I did add a few things. The emails between Jack and Alice were not in the rough draft copy, but early readers offered good insights that helped me craft those to more seamlessly weave the two stories together.

Trisha:  I liked the emails between Jack & Alice, it shared detail quite effectively, and brought together the story nicely.

Thank you Sarah for visiting today. It has been fun hanging out with you and learning the behind-the-scenes details of “All Of You“. I’ve enjoyed getting to know you better and I’m looking forward to our lunch at Baguette de France!

 

GIVEAWAY

Sarah is giving away one (1) digital copy of her latest book “All Of You” (open to US residents only).  The giveaway will be open for 1 week. The winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page at the conclusion of the giveaway.

 

To Enter:

1.)  Leave a comment on this post answering the following question:

Jacquelyn doesn’t like her full name and insists that people call her “Jack”.
Do you have a nickname that you prefer people to call you?

2.)  CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter form and follow the directions.

NOTE: Earn bonus entries daily, by tweeting about the giveaway
using the rafflecopter form.

 

****** The Giveaway has ended *****

Congratulations Tami L.

Author Interview & Giveaway – Melissa Jagears

I’m excited to have with us today Melissa Jagears, Welcome Melissa!jagearsheadshotcompressed-199x300

Carol Award winning writer, Melissa Jagears, is a homeschooling mom who writes Christian Historical Romance into the wee hours of the night. She’s the author of the Unexpected Brides Series with Bethany House. The prequel ebook novella, Love by the Letter, is her ACFW Carol Award winning novella and free to try. You can learn more about her, her books, and where she hangs out online at

Web Page // Facebook // Goodreads // Pinterest

Melissa is here today to talk with us about her most recent book release A Love So True the 2nd book in the Teaville Moral Society. (see my review) 

ALST

Evelyn Wisely has a heart for the orphans of Teaville and works at a local mansion that rescues children out of the town’s red-light district and gives them a place to live. But her desire to help isn’t limited to orphans. The owner of the mansion, Nicholas Lowe, is willing to help her try to get the women working in prostitution out of the district as well–if she can gain the cooperation and support of local businessmen to go against the rest of the community.

David Kingsman has recently arrived in Teaville from Kansas City to help with one of his father’s companies in town. While he plans on staying only long enough to prove his business merit to his father, he’s shown interest in Evelyn’s work and is intrigued enough by her to lend his support to her cause.

They begin with the best of intentions, but soon the complications pile up and Evelyn and David’s dreams look more unattainable every day. When the revelation of a long-held secret creates a seemingly insurmountable rift between them, can they trust God still has a good plan for them despite all that is stacked against them?

Now that everyone has had a moment to re-familiarize themselves with this fantastic story, let’s start our chat with Melissa.

milk-1887234_640

Q: What is your favorite beverage? 

Melissa: Milk. We buy four gallons at a time. I’m pretty sure I’m responsible for drinking three of them. The rest of my family drinks the leftover one.
Trisha: 4 Gallons, Wow! That is an impressive amount of Milk!

 

intjdarcy

Q: What Literary character is most like you and why?

Melissa: Mr. Darcy. Most all literary characters who are like me are males and almost always the villain role. Probably because broody, socially awkward, quiet, jerk types who aren’t really jerks but are usually working covertly behind the scenes in a hands-off, logical way to make the lives of the people they love better are harder to imagine in the female form. Considering my personality is the rarest female personality, I’m just guessing many people don’t know one and think female Mr. Darcys (INTJs) aren’t realistic….or even likeable, though I won’t argue that….. But thankfully Jane Austen, who was likely an INTJ as well, provided the world with an INTJ character who isn’t a villain. 🙂

Trisha: I wouldn’t have guessed Mr. Darcy!

 

isla-diablo-1994800_640

Q: Is there a place you have wanted to visit, but haven’t yet?

Melissa: The Caribbean or any tropical island. Preferably a deserted island, no tourists, warm weather, sand, ocean, no schedule, and books.

Trisha: Sounds like the ideal get-a-way spot!
book-1209805_640Q: What is your favorite Bible verse?

Melissa: I don’t have one. “Never Read a Bible Verse” (see link) — it’s all about context. I have favorite sections. The book of Romans is great. I Tim 4:6-16 maybe….

Trisha: I agree. You want to read the entire passage to gain the full meaning. My favorite passage is Psalm 91

 

133233232.xp05SzWaQ: How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your book?

Melissa: In A Heart Most Certain, the prior book, I had to come up with a reason for my bachelor hero to build a mansion he didn’t need in the middle of nowhere. (Because I wanted to write a story with the Coffeyville Brown Mansion as a set piece.) And I needed to know what his motivations were for the Scrooge/Aladdin spinoff I wanted to combine with it. So creating Nicholas is responsible for the subject/themes of the series.

Trisha: That is a beautiful house and a great starting point for inspiration. (photo credit: pbase.com)

 

heart-1908901_640Q: What do you most want readers to take away from your book?

Melissa: Don’t be quick to judge people by how they act or what you see. Take your time forming opinions about those you meet, only do so if you have enough first hand insight.

Trisha: I feel it is important to be kind to everyone you meet.
Q: What 5 books have had the greatest impact on your life?

Melissa: The Bible, Decision Making and the Will of God by Gary Friesen, The Well-Behaved Child by John Rosemond, Love and Respect by Eggerichs, Whatever Tomorrow Brings by Lori Wick (It’s the first book I read in my now favorite genre).

Trisha: Those are all excellent books. You are in good company, I have a collection of Lori Wick books on my shelf also!

 

Q: Do you have any unusual writing habits?

Melissa: If I can’t figure out what to write next, I take a shower. Best place to get unstuck. My brain is on auto-pilot just enough to keep all the millions of directions of my brain subdued so I can focus on the problem.

Trisha: That is an unusual place, but I can see the benefits. As a mother, often times the only time you have to yourself is when your in the shower.

Thank you Melissa for stopping in today to share with us about yourself and about your wonderful books!

 Melissa is generously giving away a soft-cover printed copy of A Love So True, along with a note pad to one (1) lucky winner.  (open to continental USA residents only). The giveaway will be open for one week. The winner will be announced here on this page at the close of the contest.

To Enter the giveaway:

1.) Comment below sharing your favorite place to vacation and who you’d take with you.

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter form (this helps with tracking entrants).

Note: You may receive one entry per day by tweeting about the giveaway via the rafflecopter.

********   GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED   ********

Congratulations:   Jackie W.

 

Author Interview & Giveaway with Stephenia H. McGee – In His Eyes

I am thrilled to have Stephenia H. McGee visiting today to chat with us about her newest book In His Eyes (my review).  In His Eyes was released on May 5, 2017

Steph

Stephenia H. McGee is a wife, mother of two very active little boys, author, and lover of all things historical. Stephenia currently lives in Mississippi with her husband and sons where she writes stories of faith, redemption and life steeped in the South

 

For those not familiar with Steph’s lasted book that just came out this past Friday…

IHE

Mississippi, 1865. A time when war has stolen men’s souls and left their women and children aching for sanctuary.

Ella Whitaker rescues a newborn from the dying arms of a woman of ill repute and at long last she has someone to love. In need of a wet nurse, she arrives at Belmont Plantation just as Federal soldiers demand to speak to the owner. Thinking quickly, Ella masquerades as a Yankee officer’s widow in order to have a roof over her head and a home for the child.

Major Westley Remington has dedicated his life to serving his country. The Civil War has divided his family, torn his thoughts of glory, and left him with a wound that may never heal. Westley returns home on medical furlough to settle his father’s estate at Belmont Plantation, only to find his home is being run by a fiery and independent woman—one many believe to be his wife. Now he is faced with a conflict he’s never been trained to fight, and one she has yet to conquer.

Welcome Steph, I’m so happy to visit with you today! Let’s get started with a few fun questions and then we will discuss In His Eyes.

Trisha: What is your favorite beverage?
Steph: Sweet tea. After all, I am a Mississippi gal. 😉
Trisha: Yes, the perfect summer drink!

Trisha: What would you say is your guilty pleasure?
Steph: Hmm…ultimate guilty pleasure would have to be a hot bath, a good book, and a huge slice of red velvet cake.
Trisha: Can’t go wrong with a hot bath, a good book and a slice of red velvet cake!

Trisha: Is there a place you have wanted to visit, but haven’t yet?
Steph: I would like to see a lot of places. I love to travel. I’d love the chance to get to go back to Italy and get to see Florence this time, and I have always wanted  to see Scotland, Ireland, and Greece.
Trisha: Sounds like you have some fun places to visit. Scotland is on the top of my list.

book-1209805_640Trisha: What is your favorite Bible verse?
Steph: John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches.     If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (NIV) This verse reminds me that I have to stay connected to Him daily. When I do, life is fruitful, and when I don’t I feel empty.

Trisha: In your research for In His Eyes, was there anything that surprised you?
Steph: Well, during my research for the locations and battles I wanted to use, I got sidetracked by this fascinating article on “The Angel’s Glow”. After the battle at Shiloh, there were soldiers that reported glowing wounds. As you can imagine, this unnerved them quite a bit. Then, strangely enough, the soldiers who had glowing wounds healed far better than those who didn’t, so they dubbed the glowing wounds as being touched by angels. 150+ years later it was discovered that a bioluminescent bacteria happened to have just the right conditions in the soldier’s hypothermic bodies to feed on the infection. It didn’t directly have anything to do with this particular novel, but it really took me by surprise. That is one of my favorite things about writing historical fiction—all the interesting things I find during my research.
Trisha: That is interesting! Yes, I love uncovering interesting historical details also.

Trisha: What was most difficult to write about when writing In His Eyes?
Steph: This book was a journey for me. I felt God asking me to dig deep and walk through some of Ella’s discoveries with her. I share some of her insecurities, and He kept nudging me to lean on Him as I wrote. The dream chapters in particular took a lot out of me. It was emotionally draining, and I spent most of the time writing them with tears on my cheeks, but I know that He taught me something through it. It’s my hope that there is a reader out there somewhere that He has the same message for and that this story can help point them toward Him.
Trisha: I love that! The dream chapters were quite powerful, I really enjoyed those.

Trisha: Reading the second half of the book a song kept playing in my mind; Did you have a song or songs that you thought of while writing?
Steph: I think that Jordan Feliz’s song Beloved could really be a theme song for Ella! This song came on the radio a lot while I was writing this book, and it felt like He used it to keep inspiring me. I’d love to know what song you had in mind during the second half.
Trisha: Oh, that’s is a good song! The song that kept coming to my mind was Jason Gray’s song “Remind Me Who I Am” from his album A Way To See In The Dark

Trisha: I enjoyed reading Ella’s dreams; what was your inspiration for her dreams?
Steph: At one of the classes I attended during the ACFW conference last year the teacher handed out notebooks. And I think this is super cool—he prayed diligently over them and God led him to write a from God note in each one. He prayed over them again and then handed them out to the attendees—each with their own note from God. The way people reacted and how each note really meant something to the one who received it was amazing to watch. Mine said, “Use your stories to give others a glimpse of the not yet. This is a season where we will go into new lands and dream new dreams.” Not too long before that, I had a dream where the colors were unreal and the place was stunning. I must have reread that note a hundred times, it so stirred me. A couple of months later as I began to pray over the next book I wanted to write, those words came back to me, as did my dream of that place of color and light. I didn’t do the things Ella does during her dreams in the book, but the place I saw in my own dream really stuck with me and           inspired the story.
Trisha: It is quite humbling how God whispers to our hearts and leads us to help and bless others.

Trisha: Will there be future stories at Belmont Plantation? And, what book are you working on next?
Steph: As of right now, this is a stand-alone book and I do not have any others planned for Belmont. My readers have been asking me for a couple of years for a new book in my Ironwood Plantation Family Saga, so my fall book will be set in the 1890s with Lydia and Ruth’s (from The Whistle Walk) daughters.
Trisha: Oh, that’s great! I look forward to reading it. Thank you Steph for visiting today, it sure was fun to sit down and talk about In His Eyes!

IHE  In His Eyes

24926454  The Whistle Walk (Ironwood Plantation Family saga #1)

33826065  Heir of Hope (IronWood Plantation Family saga #2)

GIVEAWAY Time:
Friends, Steph is graciously offering one digital copy of In His Eyes to one lucky person. Entries are open to USA residents. Contest will run for one week. The winner will be notified via email and announced on this page at the close of the contest.

To Enter Giveaway:

1.) Comment below, sharing with us a historical place you have visited or wish to visit
2.) Make sure to CLICK HERE to enter the Raffelcopter.

Giveaway ended.

*** THE WINNER IS ***

Kay G.

Author Interview with Heather Day Gilbert & Giveaway

Today I’m thrilled to have visiting with us Heather Day Gilbert.  I enjoyed reading her Viking saga books “God’s Daughter” & “Forest Child”.  I’ve invited Heather here today to talk with us about both of these books. (read my review)

HDGAUTHOR BIO:
HEATHER DAY GILBERT, a Grace Award winner and bestselling author, writes novels that capture life in all its messy, bittersweet, hope-filled glory. Born and raised in the West Virginia mountains, generational story-telling runs in her blood. Heather writes Viking historicals and Appalachian mystery/suspense. Publisher’s Weekly gave Heather’s Viking historical Forest Child a starred review, saying it is “an engaging story depicting timeless human struggles with faith, love, loyalty, and leadership.” Find out more on heatherdaygilbert.com.

Webpage // Facebook // Twitter // Pinterest 

For those who may not be familiar with the Viking Saga, A quick review of the books “God’s Daughter” and “Forest Child”

GodsDaughterGod’s Daughter

One Viking woman. One God. One legendary journey to North America. In the tenth century, when pagan holy women rule the Viking lands, Gudrid turns her back on her training as a seeress to embrace Christianity. Clinging to her faith, she joins her husband, Finn, on a voyage to North America. Almost five centuries before Columbus, Viking women sailed to North America with their husbands. God’s Daughter, Book One in the Vikings of the New World Saga, offers an expansive yet intimate look into the world of Gudrid Thorbjarnardottir—daughter-in-law of Eirik the Red, and the first documented European woman to have a child in North America. This novel is heavily based on the Icelandic Sagas and is written from a Christian worldview.

 

FCForest Child

Viking warrior. Dauntless leader. Protective mother. Determined to rise above her rank as the illegitimate “forest child” of Eirik the Red, Freydis launches a second voyage to Vinland to solidify her power and to demand the respect she deserves. She will return home with enough plunder to force her brother, Leif, to sell her the family farm in Greenland. Historically based on the Icelandic Sagas, Forest Child brings the memorable, conflicted persona of Freydis Eiriksdottir to life. This immersive tale is Book Two in the bestselling Vikings of the New World Saga.

 

Thank you Heather for stopping by today.  It is a pleasure to have you here to visit and talk about the Viking’s Saga.   Before we talk Vikings, let’s ask a few getting-to-know-you questions.

coffee-1629158_640Q:   What is your favorite beverage?

Heather:   Hands down, it’s coffee!

Ahhh, yes!  Must start the day with a cup of coffee.

 

 

Q:   What would you say is your guilty pleasure?
Heather'sGardenHeather:   I love to stroll around in garden stores looking at plants/flowers, which bores my kids to death. I also love playing video games, which doesn’t bore my kids, but gives them lots to laugh about due to my inferior skills. LOL

LOL! I’m pretty sure that is why my son asks me to play video games with him also! 

 

Q:   How often do you people watch?

Heather:   You know, I don’t do this as much as I like. Since we live in a rural area, I don’t get out a lot, and when I do, sometimes it takes something really strange/unique to catch my attention since I’m usually distracted by watching my kids. On the other hand, I tend to brainstorm every chance I get.

We also live in somewhat of a rural area, but the occasional trip to the mall can be entertaining when people watching. 

 

Iceland.birdQ:   Is there a place you have wanted to visit, but haven’t yet?
Heather:   Oh, YES! Newfoundland, Iceland, and Greenland—where my Viking characters really lived. Also Norway and Sweden, where my great grandpa/grandma lived before they came to the USA. Wales and England also look beautiful—my hubby is part Welsh. And given how much I loved that show Yukon Men, Alaska would also be fun.

Those all sound like fantastic place to visit. I too have wanted to visit Norway & Sweden. 

 

book-1209805_640Q:   What is your favorite Bible verse?
Heather:   Psalm 73:25-26: “Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”

I love this verse because our lives are constantly shifting, people let us down, and we lose those we love. But in the end, God is the Great I AM and we will be with Him someday.

Oh, that’s a fantastic verse and a beautiful reminder that no matter what changes in our lives God never changes!

 

VikingFoodQ:  In your research for the Vikings Saga, was there anything that surprised you?
Heather:   Sometimes I was surprised by foods they didn’t have (like potatoes). I was also surprised a couple of times when I brainstormed what my characters would do, then I checked the sagas, and I realized they HAD done that. Maybe I’d remembered it from reading it, but it was always a nice little surprise. 🙂

That has got to be a great feeling, knowing that your initial idea was spot on!

 

GuildridFreydisQ:   What was most difficult to write about when writing about Gudrid?  Freydis?
Heather:   Great question. For Gudrid, she doesn’t really share my personality. She’s always looking back to the past, she’s pretty easily depressed, and given the choice to run or fight, she’ll run or retreat into herself. I’m so much more like Freydis—I just charge ahead, trusting I’ll make things work. Fight trumps flight. 😉 So Gudrid was a bit harder to write, but she resembles people I know, so it was easier to guess how she would react to certain situations. And the toughest thing about writing Freydis is that I was in her head (I write in first person, present tense, so it’s VERY alive in my mind), and that means I was “there” when she did a super violent thing. My readers prayed me through as I wrote that scene.

 

ForestChildMimeQ:   Which of these strong leading women (Gudrid & Freydis) is your favorite?
Heather:   I loved Gudrid best when I wrote God’s Daughter, but then I wrote Forest Child and I was pretty surprised by how Freydis grew on me. So I think Freydis is my fave, but I would be FRIENDS with Gudrid. LOL

That really is a tough question.  I couldn’t pick a favorite myself.  I liked each for different reasons.

 

GuildridQ:   When writing Gudrid & Freydis, who did you use as a character inspiration for their appearance?
Heather:   For Gudrid, I loved Amanda Seyfried. Naturally blonde hair, wider-set green eyes—just a knockout.

FreydisFor Freydis, I initially liked Tilda Swinton just because of her quirky, gangly redheadedness, but toward the end, I thought Queen Aslaug in the Vikings miniseries really resembled her. So the cover art for her was spot-on how I’d pictured her, since the woman looks like Aslaug to me.

 

I enjoyed looking thru the photo’s on your Pinterest board for both of these books.  It really gives a visual insight to what you had in mind when writing the stories. (click here to visit Heather’s Pinterest board)

 

Q:   Can we look forward to reading more Viking stories? VikingLongBoat

Heather:   I do hope so, but right now, I do feel my saga is finished (at least the one that was based on real people/events from the sagas).

LeifHowever, I do keep thinking about Leif Eiriksson. 😉

We’ll see!

 

Ohhh, a story about Leif Eiriksson would be a good one!  Thank you Heather for stopping in for a visit.  It sure was fun chatting and learning more about these fantastic characters in your books!

Heather:   Thanks so much for letting me visit!

GodsDaughter

You can purchase both God’s Daughter

 

 

 

FC

 

and Forest Child at Amazon or where ever books are sold

 

 

 

Heather is giving away ONE digital copy of either “God’s Daughter” or “Forest Child” for two blessed individuals.

 (the winners may each choose which digital book they would like).

The giveaway will run for one week, the winner of the digital book will be announced on this page at the conclusion of the contest. For additional information please review the Disclosure & Policies page.

To enter the giveaway

FIRST: comment below which book you would like to win and please include any question you may have for Heather.

SECOND: CLICK HERE to enter the Raffelcopter and follow the directions within.

 

**** Giveaway has ended ****
Winners of the digital copies are:

Arletta B. – God’s Daughter
Connie S. – Forest Child