Waltz in the Wilderness by Kathleen Denly

She’s desperate to find her missing father. His conscience demands he risk all to help. 

Synopsis:

Eliza Brooks is haunted by her role in her mother’s death, so she’ll do anything to find her missing pa—even if it means sneaking aboard a southbound ship. When those meant to protect her abandon and betray her instead, a family friend’s unexpected assistance is a blessing she can’t refuse.

Daniel Clarke came to California to make his fortune, and a stable job as a San Francisco carpenter has earned him more than most have scraped from the local goldfields. But it’s been four years since he left Massachusetts and his fiancé is impatient for his return. Bound for home at last, Daniel Clarke finds his heart and plans challenged by a tenacious young woman with haunted eyes. Though every word he utters seems to offend her, he is determined to see her safely returned to her father. Even if that means risking his fragile engagement.

When disaster befalls them in the remote wilderness of the Southern California mountains, true feelings are revealed, and both must face heart-rending decisions. But how to decide when every choice before them leads to someone getting hurt?

  Waltz in the Wilderness

My Thoughts:

Right from the very first chapter, these characters invited me to join their story and waltzed their way into my heart. I enjoyed my time spent within the pages of this engaging book and I honestly hope that you get to enjoy this story as well!

Eliza Brooks has more than her fair share of rough edges. Prickly could be a word that most would use to describe her. She keeps others at a distance and doesn’t let people get close. Eliza has experienced more than her fair share of loss, everyone she’s ever let in, has either died or left her behind. I loved the character journey and growth that Eliza makes. A reminder that everyone we meet has a story, and is hurting. That everyone needs our grace and kindness.

With an engaging plot, dynamic characters and unexpected dangers, you won’t be able to put this book down! More often than not I found myself talking to these characters as if they could hear me! Kathleen Denly brings not only the setting but the characters to life and invites to the reader to join the story!

I eagerly look forward to more page-turning adventures in the Chaparral Hearts series and more fantastic stories from this author in the future!

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

Favorite Quote:

About the Author:

Author Photo.KathleenDenly  Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting.

Waltz in the Wilderness is Kathleen’s debut novel and the first in a series of three stand-alone historical Christian romance novels connected by secondary characters and their beautiful Southern California setting.

Kathleen would love it if you visited her website at KathleenDenly.com. You can also connect with her on social media:

Instagram | Twitter | Facebook Author Page | Armchair Adventure Krew

  Waltz in the Wilderness

To see some of the photos that inspired Waltz in the Wilderness, follow Kathleen on Pinterest.

Be sure to check out the fun Author Interview and enter the GIVEAWAY!

 

 

Author Interview & Giveaway: Kathleen Denly

Today I am super excited to have Author, Kathleen Denly here to chat with us today about her debut book, A Waltz in the Wilderness. Be sure to read all the way to the end and enter to win a copy of Kathleen’s new book!

Author Photo.KathleenDenly  Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting.

Waltz in the Wilderness is Kathleen’s debut novel and the first in a series of three stand-alone historical Christian romance novels connected by secondary characters and their beautiful Southern California setting.

Kathleen would love it if you visited her website at KathleenDenly.com. You can also connect with her on social media:

Instagram | Twitter | Facebook Author Page | Armchair Adventure Krew

48584636. sy475 Eliza Brooks is haunted by her role in her mother’s death, so she’ll do anything to find her missing pa—even if it means sneaking aboard a southbound ship. When those meant to protect her abandon and betray her instead, a family friend’s unexpected assistance is a blessing she can’t refuse.

Daniel Clarke came to California to make his fortune, and a stable job as a San Francisco carpenter has earned him more than most have scraped from the local goldfields. But it’s been four years since he left Massachusetts and his fiancé is impatient for his return. Bound for home at last, Daniel Clarke finds his heart and plans challenged by a tenacious young woman with haunted eyes. Though every word he utters seems to offend her, he is determined to see her safely returned to her father. Even if that means risking his fragile engagement.

When disaster befalls them in the remote wilderness of the Southern California mountains, true feelings are revealed, and both must face heart-rending decisions. But how to decide when every choice before them leads to someone getting hurt?

  Waltz in the Wilderness

Thank you, Kathleen, for stopping by today to chat with us about your new book. Let’s get started with a few fun, get-to-know-you questions and then talk about the book.

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

Kathleen:  This one has actually changed. I used to be a huge fan of summer. Although I would still much rather be hot than cold, as I get older, I find Spring has become my favorite season. I like the more moderate weather and the beautiful greenery we enjoy here in Southern California during that time.

Trisha:  Spring is my favorite season. After a long cold Michigan winter, I love watching the plants come back to life and listen to the birds singing in the trees!

Bible Journaling - Love one Another (002)Q:  What is the best part of your day?

Kathleen:  Any time I can spend focused on God and His Word. I especially love Bible Journaling while listening to worship music. I don’t get to do it every morning (sometimes my Bible study is shorter), but when I do, it always starts my day off right.

Trisha:  I too enjoy Bible Journaling! I’m blessed to have a small group of ladies at church who also enjoy Bible Journaling.

love-2614754_640Q:  What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

Kathleen:  Wow. Tough question! The first one that comes to mind is Francine Rivers’ Redeeming Love. I really need to reread that one. I also really loved Deanne Gist’s early novels, A Bride Most Begrudging, Courting Trouble, Deep in the Heart of Trouble, etc.. And I was a fan of Lauraine Snelling’s Dakotah Treasure’s Series.

Trisha:  Oh, you picked some of my favorites too!!

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

Kathleen:  “10,000 Reasons” by Matt Redman

“Good Good Father” by Chris Tomlin

“Happy Dance” by Mercy Me

Trisha:  I love it! Those are some great songs!

book-863418_640Q:  What do you love about this story?

Kathleen:  The journey the characters go through in their walk with the Lord. I don’t want to give too much away, but writing these stories is always a journey for both me and the character as God reminds me of things and teaches me new things through my characters.  Plus the banter. That’s always fun to write. 😉

Trisha:  Great answer and I completely agree with the fun banter too!

guy-2609361_640Q:  Which character took you by surprise?

Kathleen:  Hmmm. That’s a toss-up between Alice and Richard. Neither one of them was originally meant to have as big a role in the story as they wound up getting. Then I fell in love with Richard so much that I made him the hero of my next book, Sing in the Sunlight.

Trisha:  I am looking forward to reading more about Richard in your next book!!

coffee-2440074_640Q:  What is something you hope readers will tell others about this story?

Kathleen:  How much they loved it, of course! More specifically, though, I hope they can share something about the story that they were able to relate to. I write my stories with the hope that God will use my words to speak to people’s hearts. If God can use a donkey to speak, why not my story? Since we are all different, we all need to hear different things, so I don’t expect each person’s take away to be the same. Though, in a broad sense, I hope people are reminded that their identity is in Christ and not in their accomplishments or failures. That’s a theme I try to include in all of my stories, but in different ways.

correcting-1870721_640Q:  What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

Kathleen:  Ooooh. I’m actually dying to share a particular scene that I wrote for Alice and Richard but later deleted. It was so fun, but wasn’t essential to the plot so I had to remove it. The problem is, if I share it here, it would reveal a spoiler. I will probably wind up adding it to my Kathleen’s Readers’ Club Freebie Library in the near future. I’ll just add an upfront warning that people should only read it if they’ve already read Waltz in the Wilderness.

Trisha: It sure would be fun to read it from your Reader’s Club Library!

books-315677_640Q:  What are you currently working on and how long till we can read more?! 

Kathleen:  I am currently finishing up Sing in the Sunlight and preparing to send it out to beta readers. My publisher has it scheduled to release in early 2021, but the exact release date isn’t set yet.

Trisha:  I’m excited to be able to read more wonderful stories of yours! Thank you for visiting with us today!

* * * * * GIVEAWAY  * * * * *

Kathleen Denly is giving away 1 (one) digital copy of her book “Waltz in the Wilderness”. 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. The winner will have 48 hours to respond to the email, before another winner will be chosen.

Return daily during the giveaway period to tweet for bonus entries using the Rafflecopter entry form.

 To Enter the Giveaway: 

1.)  Sign up for Kathleen’s KRC Newsletter (click here) & leave a blog post comment on this post answering the following question:
“What story elements make a book a 5-star book for you?”

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

a Rafflecopter giveaway

***** GIVEAWAY WINNER ******

Congratulations Patti O.

Waltz

 

First Line Friday: Waltz in the Wilderness

Welcome to First Line Friday’s hosted by Hoarding Books.

Today I am excited to be featuring Waltz in the Wilderness (Chaparral Hearts) by Kathleen Denly.  This debut novel released this week, and I have been enjoying my time with these characters. Check out the first line below and then be sure to snag a copy to enjoy this weekend! Be sure to check back here on Monday for a fun giveaway!

WaltzInTheWilderness

October 1850
California Gold Fields

“No!”

The scream pierced Eli, ripping her from sleep.

Click on the title below to snag your copy!

  Waltz in the Wilderness

 

Now it’s your turn!

Grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line. To see what First Lines others are sharing this week head over to Hoarding Books.

First Line Fridays hosted by Hoarding Books

Happy Release Day!!

Many new books hit the shelves today! I’d like to share with you 6 brand-new books that you will not want to miss out on!

Clicking on the title will take you to that book.

Two Debut Author’s Book Releases

  Waltz in the Wilderness by Kathleen Denly

 Three Little Things by Patti Stockdale

One New Stand-alone Release:

  The Tea Chest by Heidi Chiavaroli

Book 1 in a New Series:

 Veiled in Smoke (The Windy City Saga #1) by Jocelyn Green

Two books that are #3 in their series:

The Land Beneath Us (Sunrise at Normandy #3) by Sarah Sundin

The Brightest of Dreams (Canadian Crossing #3) by Susan Ann Mason

 

Be sure to be watching for my book reviews on these fantastic books this month!

 

 

Cover Reveal & Giveaway – Waltz in the Wilderness by Kathleen Denly

Welcome to my Waltz in the Wilderness Cover Reveal Giveaway!

About the Book

Title: Waltz in the Wilderness
Series: Chaparral Hearts
Genre: Historical Christian Romance
Publisher: Wild Heart Books
Release Date: Feb. 4, 2020

She’s desperate to find her missing father. His conscience demands he risk all to help.

Eliza Brooks is haunted by her role in her mother’s death, so she’ll do anything to find her missing pa—even if it means sneaking aboard a southbound ship. When those meant to protect her abandon and betray her instead, a family friend’s unexpected assistance is a blessing she can’t refuse.

Daniel Clarke came to California to make his fortune, and a stable job as a San Francisco carpenter has earned him more than most have scraped from the local goldfields. But it’s been four years since he left Massachusetts and his fiancé is impatient for his return. Bound for home at last, Daniel Clarke finds his heart and plans challenged by a tenacious young woman with haunted eyes. Though every word he utters seems to offend her, he is determined to see her safely returned to her father. Even if that means risking his fragile engagement.

When disaster befalls them in the remote wilderness of the Southern California mountains, true feelings are revealed, and both must face heart-rending decisions. But how to decide when every choice before them leads to someone getting hurt?

Preorder available at:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Kobo

About the Author

Author Photo.KathleenDenly  Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting.

Waltz in the Wilderness is Kathleen’s debut novel and the first in a series of three stand-alone historical Christian romance novels connected by secondary characters and their beautiful Southern California setting.

Kathleen would love it if you visited her website at KathleenDenly.com. You can also connect with her on social media:

Instagram | Twitter | Facebook Author Page | Armchair Adventure Krew

To see some of the photos that inspired Waltz in the Wilderness, follow her on Pinterest.

Ready…

.

.

.

.

Set…

.

.

.

.

Reveal!!!

WaltzInTheWilderness

Preorder your copy today!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Kobo

 

PreOrder Bonus

If you preorder Waltz in the Wilderness AND email Kathleen proof of purchase (screenshot) before 12:00am PT January 11, 2020, you will receive a free digital copy of Ribbons and Beaus, a Chaparral Hearts Novella on January 21, 2020! For complete details, click here.

Excerpt from Waltz in the Wilderness

October 1850
California gold fields

They were going to starve to death, if they didn’t freeze to death first. Sure, they had beans for dinner, but Eli had had to trade her spare shirt for them—the one she’d been wearing beneath her everyday shirt to keep the early-October frost from biting her skin. She shivered beside the fire. Not much left to trade for supper, but then, there wasn’t another miner in these diggings that had grub to spare even if she had something worth trading.

She studied each bean, careful not to burn a one. Her hollow stomach cramped as the sweet smell of the simmering meal mixed with the scent of wood smoke filling the air.

A pinch of rosemary would have added flavor. Would Mama have been disappointed Eli’d traded the last of their herbs for Pa’s new coat? She shook her head. If Eli couldn’t coax Pa from the creek, the least she could do was keep his shoulders warm. Mama would have understood.

A shift in the cold wind blew soot into Eli’s eyes as she lifted the pan from the fire. Brushing a grimy strand of hair from her face and blinking away the sting, she turned her back to the smoke and stirred the beans.

Time to get Pa.

She walked to where he squatted in the icy mountain creek.

He wouldn’t be happy she’d traded the spare shirt. He’d wanted it to hide her blossoming womanhood. Of course, he’d have to notice the shirt was gone first.

Standing beside the babbling water, she toed off her boots before yanking her tattered socks off. After stuffing them into a boot, she pulled up her trousers and, with a bracing breath, waded into the chilling water.

“Here, Pa.”

She held the spoon out handle first, but he shrugged her away. Afternoon sunlight bounced off his thin, greasy hair—brown like hers, but darkened by muck. His dirt-encrusted brown eyes continued squinting into the swirling pan of water. The gentle rotation of his wrists never ceased.

“Come on, Pa. You gotta eat.”

He cleared his throat and spat to the side opposite where she stood, never taking his eyes from the water. “I’m fine. You eat.”

Eli lifted the spoon higher. “But, Pa—”

“I’ll eat later.” He shifted in the calf-deep water so that her worried stare landed squarely between his broad shoulder blades.

Her fingers tightened around the spoon as she planted her fist on her hip. The rocks shifted beneath her feet. “That’s what you said this morning.”

“I’m busy, Eli. Now hush and leave me be.”

She stood there a moment longer, taking in the sight of him. That tall, too-thin frame draped in the now too-large, threadbare shirt. She’d mended that thing more times than she could count. The trousers he kept up with a rope at his waist needed mending in the right knee, but she doubted the fabric could endure another stitching. She peered down at her own trousers. The worn threads of the cuffs drifted and tugged with the current.

She frowned at the beans cooling in the pan. A body shouldn’t have to choose between clothes and food. But miners upstream caught any fish in the creek, and hunting around here was pointless. All the digging, rattling, and mining commotion scared the game away.

She’d tried to coax Pa to leave their claim long enough to hunt elsewhere to no avail.

Mama could’ve convinced him.

Mama isn’t here. Eli straightened her shoulders. “Pa, this is the last—”

“Hey, Eli!” The familiar voice cut her off.

She turned in time to see a small rock sail toward her head and managed to duck it, but the move upset her balance. She tipped backward.

The beans!

Contorting herself to right her balance without spilling their dinner, she wobbled back and forth as stones rocked beneath her. She shifted her footing, but the sloped face of a large, moss-covered rock hastened her descent. Holding the pan aloft as she fell backward, her body tilted sideways and she overcorrected—

Sending the beans spilling down her shirt and into the creek.

For a moment she sat still, the chill of the icy mountain runoff failing to cool her blood as gales of boyish laughter drifted toward her from the bank. She erupted from the creek, wielding her now-empty pan above her head. “Morgan Channing, I’m gonna have your hide for this!”

She sloshed three full steps to the edge of the creek before she froze.

The eleven-year-old had stopped laughing and was staring at her, mouth hanging open, eyes wide. “Y-you…! Y-you’re a…a…”

Eli followed his gaze to her chest, where a few beans still clung to her drenched, oversized shirt. She dropped the pan and covered herself. Oh, how brainless of her! Would Pa send her away?

Available now for preorder!

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Kobo

Giveaway

Cover Reveal Giveaway Promo Image

To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away a “Trust in the Lord” Journal & 80+ Journal Stickers Set, along with a $10 Amazon gift card. Be sure to comment on the blogs listed below for extra entries into the giveaway. Click the link below to enter.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY

Blog Stops

Reading is My Superpower

Radiant Light

Joy of Reading

The Christian Fiction Girl

Moments Dipped in Ink

Bookworm Mama

Romances of the Cross

Fiction Aficionado

Robin’s Nest

A Baker’s Perspective

The Singing Librarian

With a Joyful Noise

Don’t forget to share this giveaway with your friends!