Book Beginnings on Fridays and Book Blogger Hop: February 3, 2023

Book Beginnings on Fridays is hosted each week by Rose City Reader. It’s a chance to share the first sentence or so of the book you are reading this week. You can check out others’ book beginnings here. I’m also going to link up with Carrie at Reading Is My Superpower for First Line Friday.

This week’s book beginning:

Synopsis:

California’s gold country, 1850. A time when men sold their souls for a bag of gold and women sold their bodies for a place to sleep.

Angel expects nothing from men but betrayal. Sold into prostitution as a child, she survives by keeping her hatred alive. And what she hates most are the men who use her, leaving her empty and dead inside.

Then she meets Michael Hosea. A man who seeks his Father’s heart in everything, Michael Hosea obeys God’s call to marry Angel and to love her unconditionally. Slowly, day by day, he defies Angel’s every bitter expectation until, despite her resistance her frozen heart begins to thaw.

But with her unexpected softening come overwhelming feelings of unworthiness and fear. And so Angel runs. Back to the darkness, away from her husband’s pursuing love, terrified of the truth she can no longer deny: Her final healing must come from the One who loves her even more than Michael Hosea does…the One who will never let her go.

Alex Stafford was just like Mama said. He was
tall and dark, and Sarah had never seen
anyone so beautiful.

Redeeming Love has been out for a long time. It’s been made into a movie. But I never read it. It’s part of my 12 Challenge this year, recommended by my friend Suzanne. My review will be up before too much more time passes!

Would you pick up this book and give it a read?

Book Blogger Hop

Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Coffee Addicted Writer. It starts each Friday and runs through the following Thursday. Each week, there’s a new prompt featuring a book-related question. It’s designed to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, make new blogging friends, and gain followers. See what others have to say on this topic and link up your own post here.

What was your favorite genre to read as a child? Do you still read that genre, or do you read something else now? (submitted by Mark @ Carstairs Considers)

As a child, I read a lot of mysteries. But much like today, I didn’t limit myself to one genre. I devoured books. I read horror – King, Straub, Saul, Koontz. I snagged my mother’s Harlequin romances and Sidney Sheldon novels. I read all of our collection of Reader’s Digest Condensed Books. McCaffrey and Tolkien, L’Engle and Lackey. If it caught my attention, I’d read it. And those eclectic reading habits stick with me to this day.

What about you? Did you have a favorite childhood genre?

Posted in Book Beginnings on Fridays, Book Blogger Hop, Book Memes, Christian Fiction, Historical Fiction | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

Book Blitz: Murder’s Legacy (Tori Winters #2) by Anita Dickason

Murder’s Legacy

A Tori Winters Mystery, Book 2

By
Anita Dickason

NOW AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER!

Mystery / Women Sleuths

Publisher: Mystic Circle
Books

Coming February 16, 2023

Scroll down for Giveaway!

Secrets that defy time!


An inconceivable disaster brings Tori Winters’s plans for the historic house she inherited to a traumatic standstill. A section of the escape tunnel built by her great-grandfather, a notorious Dallas gangster, has collapsed. Within the rubble, there is a gruesome discovery. A skeleton with a bullet hole in the skull.

The shocking cave-in triggers an ominous scheme to condemn her property as accusations arise that the tunnel is dangerous.

Embattled, Tori soon discovers that more than the destruction of the house is on the line. It seems she can’t escape the past. It keeps clawing its way into her life with deadly consequences.


Who hides in the shadows with a motive for murder?
And … is Tori the target?

CLICK TO PRE-ORDER!


Check out the book trailer!

Award-winning Author Anita Dickason is a twenty-two-year veteran of the Dallas Police Department. She served as a patrol officer, undercover narcotics detective, advanced accident investigator, tactical officer, and first female sniper on the Dallas SWAT team.

Anita writes about what she knows, cops and crime. Her police background provides an unending source of inspiration for her plots and characters. Many incidents and characters portrayed in her books are based on personal experience. For her, the characters are the fun part of writing as she never knows where they will take her. There is always something out of the ordinary in her stories.

In Anita’s debut novel, Sentinels of the Night, she created an elite FBI Unit, the Trackers. Since then, she has added three more Tracker crime thrillers, Going Gone!, A u 7 9, and Operation Navajo, which are not a series and can be read in any order, and Deadly Business, a crime thriller.

As a Texas author, many of Anita’s books are based in Texas, or there is a link to Texas. When she stepped outside of the Tracker novels and wrote Not Dead and the Tori Winters Mysteries series, she set them in the small Texas communities of Meridian and Granbury, respectively.

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Tori Winters Series tote bag + personalized coffee mug
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Posted in Book Blitz, Contemporary Fiction, Lone Star Book Blog Tours, Lone Star Literary Life, Mystery | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Can’t-Wait Wednesday: Mastering the Art of French Murder by Colleen Cambridge

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme that highlights books soon to be released, the ones we’re excited about but haven’t read yet. It’s hosted by Wishful Endings, and was formerly hosted by Breaking the Spine. Y’all can check out all of this week’s Can’t-Wait Wednesday posts here.


Title: Mastering the Art of French Murder

Author: Colleen Cambridge

Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction

Publication Date: April 25, 2023

Publisher: Kensington

Synopsis:

Set in the City of Light and starring Julia Child’s (fictional) best friend, confidant, and fellow American, this Magnifique new historical mystery series from the acclaimed author of Murder at Mallowan Hall combines a fresh perspective on the iconic chef’s years in post-WWII Paris with a delicious mystery and a unique culinary twist. Perfect for fans of Jacqueline Winspear, Marie Benedict, and of course, Julia Child alike!

As Paris rediscovers its joie de vivre, Tabitha Knight, who recently arrived from Detroit for an extended stay with her French grandfather, is on her own journey of discovery. Paris isn’t just the City of Light; it’s the city of history, romance, stunning architecture . . . and food. Thanks to her neighbour and friend Julia Child, another ex-pat who’s fallen head over heels for Paris, Tabitha is learning how to cook for her Grandpère and Oncle Rafe.

Between tutoring Americans in French, visiting the market, and eagerly sampling the results of Julia’s studies at Le Cordon Bleu cooking school, Tabitha’s sojourn is proving thoroughly delightful. That is, until the cold December day they return to Julia’s building and learn that a body has been found in the cellar. Tabitha recognizes the victim as a woman she’d met only the night before, at a party given by Julia’s sister, Dort. The murder weapon found nearby is recognizable too—a knife from Julia’s kitchen.

Tabitha is eager to help the investigation but is shocked when Inspector Merveille reveals that a note, in Tabitha’s handwriting, was found in the dead woman’s pocket. Is this murder a case of international intrigue, or something far more personal? From the shadows of the Tour Eiffel at midnight to the tiny third-floor Child kitchen to the grungy streets of Montmartre, Tabitha navigates through the city hoping to find the real killer before she or one of her friends ends up in prison . . . or worse.

My thoughts:

A culinary mystery set in Paris? Yes, please! Mysteries and food are two of my favorite things! And this is the first in a new series, so I’m expecting this to be the start of a whole new must-read addiction.

What are you waiting for this week?

Posted in Book Memes, Can't-Wait Wednesday, Cozy Mystery, Historical Fiction | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments

Word of the Week: January 30, 2023

Happy Monday! Time for the Word of the Week!

I’ve lived a fair number of years on this earth, and I’ve read a lot of books in that time. And today’s word is one that is completely new to me. I love it when that happens!

So were you familiar with the word “recondite” before today? Do you think you’d use it in conversation?

Link up your Word of the Week below, and invite your friends to play along, too!

Posted in Book Memes, Word of the Week | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Book Review: An Enemy Like Me by Teri M. Brown

  • Title: An Enemy Like Me
  • Author: Teri M. Brown
  • Where to buy: Amazon (affiliate link)
  • Genre: Historical Fiction
  • Would I recommend: Absolutely. Teri M. Brown writes a compelling story.

Synopsis:

How does a man show his love – for country, for heritage, for family – during a war that sets the three at odds? What sets in motion the necessity to choose one over the other? How will this choice change everything and everyone he loves?

Jacob Miller, a first-generation American, grew up in New Berlin, a small German immigrant town in Ohio where he endured the Great Depression, met his wife, and started a family. Though his early years were not easy, Jacob believes he is headed toward his ‘happily ever after’ until a friend is sent to an internment camp for enemy combatants, and the war lands resolutely on his doorstep.

In An Enemy Like Me, Teri M. Brown uses the backdrop of World War II to show the angst experienced by Jacob, his wife, and his four-year-old son as he leaves for and fights in a war he did not create. She explores the concepts of xenophobia, intrafamily dynamics, and the recognition that war is not won and lost by nations, but by ordinary men and women and the families who support them.

My review:

I had nothing but good things to say about Teri M. Brown’s first novel, Sunflowers Beneath the Snow. She set the bar high for her future books. And with An Enemy Like Me, she surpasses her earlier work.

An Enemy Like Me opens from the perspective of young William Miller. His parents are fighting for the first time, and his comfortable routine changes. His father leaves, and there is no definite answer as to when he will be back.

We then see the story unfold from different viewpoints: William as a child, William in 2016 as an adult looking back on his life, Jacob, and Bonnie. Jakob Mueller – now Jacob Miller – grew up in America, the child of German immigrants. His father died when Jacob was young, and his childhood and youth were times of privation and struggle.

Yet Jacob was making his way as a young man, and he met and married Bonnie, a young lady from a well-to-do family. They were young and in love. It wasn’t long before they added William to the family. And then the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, and everything changed.

Before the United States entered the war, anti-German sentiment ran high, and Jacob felt this keenly. He was proud of his German heritage, but he was also proud to be an American. How can a man reconcile the two sides of himself? Jacob thought to do so by joining the military and fighting the Japanese, to show his love for his country.

There are some descriptions of the war itself, but Brown’s focus is not the graphic horror that is war. Her focus is the battle of the heart and mind. Jacob felt the tension in which he lived as an American of German heritage. How could he be proud of his heritage and true to his country at the same time? He joined the military after Pearl Harbor, hoping to go into battle against the Japanese. They were not his people. He could fight them. But when his orders changed and he was sent to Germany, he struggled to make sense of a war that had him fighting against men who looked like him, who lived and loved and raised their families in the same place Jacob’s ancestors had come from. How do you justify taking up arms against someone who could have been your friend, your neighbor, had circumstances been different? This is one of the all too human fronts on which the war was fought.

Brown also looks at the impact of war on a family over decades. We see William as a child, trying to understand why his father must leave and trying to uphold his father’s wish that he, William, be a brave little soldier for his mother. We see his father’s return through the eyes of William a little older, see Jacob’s challenges at reentering civilian society and Bonnie’s efforts to help him return more to himself. War changes people, so the story says. Brown examines how those changes hit and how they ripple through the years, impacting not only Jacob and Bonnie and their relationship, but rolling down to how William relates to his children.

The story is at times joyful and full of youthful exuberance. At other times, it is weighed down with despair, and hope seems hard to come by. Brown illustrates clearly that it may be nations that declare war, but it is fought by men and women on fronts foreign and domestic, and the effects of war do not end when a man hangs up his weapon and returns home.

Teri M. Brown is quite possibly one of the finest writers of historical fiction I’ve had the pleasure to read in recent memory. If you want to be pulled into a story that makes you consider historical events in a new light, if you want characters who will make you want to hug them and whose struggles will break your heart, you need to pick up An Enemy Like Me.

Disclaimer: I received a review copy of this book from the author and Atmosphere Press. All opinions here are mine, and I don’t say nice things about books I don’t actually like.

Posted in Book Reviews, Historical Fiction | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Book Beginnings on Friday and Book Blogger Hop: January 27, 2023

Book Beginnings on Fridays is hosted each week by Rose City Reader. It’s a chance to share the first sentence or so of the book you are reading this week. You can check out others’ book beginnings here. I’m also going to link up with Carrie at Reading Is My Superpower for First Line Friday.

This week’s book beginning:

Synopsis:

It proves to be a Christmas to remember when Chris Matheson’s body is discovered in the woods near an international airport.

Everyone is stunned—especially Chris Matheson.

The mystery deepens when they discover the victim has Chris’s federal agent badge and appears to have been investigating one of his old cases.

The Geezer Squad’s latest case is not only a whodunit but who-got-dun. Is this a case of mistaken identity? Was Chris the intended victim? If not, then they must identify the murder victim to find his killer.

With Christmas days away, join the Chris Matheson and the Geezer Squad as they race to piece together the clues to their most puzzling case yet.

Chris Matheson pushed through the glass door of the coffee shop.

It’s a rather humble beginning, but it turns into much, much more!

Book Blogger Hop

Book Blogger Hop is hosted by Coffee Addicted Writer. It starts each Friday and runs through the following Thursday. Each week, there’s a new prompt featuring a book-related question. It’s designed to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, make new blogging friends, and gain followers. See what others have to say on this topic and link up your own post here.

Do you prefer to read in a quiet or noisy setting?
(submitted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer)

For me, the background doesn’t really matter. Quiet or noisy, I can lose myself in a book just about anywhere. My only requirement is that no one talk to me while I’m trying to read. I can’t concentrate on both book and conversation. People talking on TV, across the room, that doesn’t bug me. But if someone addresses me directly, I have to stop reading to respond.

What about you? Do you like it quiet when you read, or is a little noise okay?

Posted in Book Beginnings on Fridays, Book Blogger Hop, Book Memes, Mystery | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments

Can’t-Wait Wednesday: At the Coffee Shop of Curiosities by Heather Webber

Can’t-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme that highlights books soon to be released, the ones we’re excited about but haven’t read yet. It’s hosted by Wishful Endings, and was formerly hosted by Breaking the Spine. Y’all can check out all of this week’s Can’t-Wait Wednesday posts here.

Title: At the Coffee Shop of Curiosities

Author: Heather Webber

Genre: Southern Fiction, Magical Realism

Publication Date: August 1, 2023

Publisher: Forge Books

Synopsis:

From the USA Today bestselling author of In the Middle of Hickory Lane comes Heather Webber’s next enchanting novel, At the Coffee Shop of Curiosities!

Ava Dowling is on the run. After the sudden death of her fiancé only a month before their wedding, she closes up her lonely apartment in Vermont to answer a want-ad in Driftwood, Alabama—a town she’s never heard of—to apply for a job she’s never done. But the promised benefits far outweigh the cons, and being a live-in caretaker to a cranky old man in a beachside cottage is the perfect way to hide from the pain of her loss and the realities she doesn’t want to face.

Maggie Laine Brightwood hardly ever sits still. On the surface, she is a bundle of bright energy as she runs Magpie’s, Driftwood’s coffee and curiosity shop. She spends her days matching people to what they were missing—whether that’s the perfect coffee blend or a trinket they didn’t know they needed. Keeping busy is the best way to distract herself from her strained relationship with her aging father, Desmond, and the guilt she feels in hiring a stranger to take care of him instead of doing it herself. She hopes no one can see the sadness lurking under her cheerful exterior, even though it weighs her down like an anchor.

As the season stretches on and tourists come and go from the beach, Ava and Maggie become fast friends, bonding over the magic they find in letting go in order to move on—because sometimes drifting through life will lead you to where you belong.

My thoughts:

That’s when I want this book! And I’ve got to wait until AUGUST!!!!!

But it’s Heather Webber. All of the other books of hers that I’ve read have been fantastic. So I know this one will be worth waiting for!

What book are you eagerly anticipating?

Posted in Book Memes, Can't-Wait Wednesday, Magical Realism, Southern Fiction | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten New-to-Me Authors in 2022

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and is now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl. Check out upcoming Top Ten themes on Jana’s blog and go here to see what others have on their Top Ten Tuesday lists!

I love finding new authors whose books I love! Here are ten that are new to me from the past year, and the books that introduced me to their work. Some have extensive backlists (yay!), some are just starting out (more books to come!).

  1. Susan May Warren, Sunrise
  2. Karen Witemeyer, In Honor’s Defense
  3. Kim Davis, Frosted Yuletide Murder
  4. Amanda Cabot, The Spark of Love
  5. Verity Bright, A Royal Murder
  6. Kimberly Fish, Comfort Zone
  7. Teri M. Brown, Sunflowers Beneath the Snow
  8. Katherine H. Brown, A Spoonful of Gunpowder
  9. Lorenzo Carcaterra, Nonna Maria and the Case of the Missing Bride
  10. DiAnn Mills, Concrete Evidence

And it’s a new year, and that means more new authors to discover!

What new authors did you find last year?

Posted in Book Memes, Bookouture, Christian Fiction, Cozy Mystery, Historical Fiction, Lone Star Book Blog Tours, Lone Star Literary Life, Mystery, Romance, Steampunk, Top Ten Tuesday | Tagged , | 11 Comments

Word of the Week: January 23, 2023

Happy Monday! It’s time for a new and entertaining word of the week!

This is one that’s actually used from time to time at our house.

I have been known to call people blithering idiots from time to time.

Have you ever used this word, or is it new to you? Leave a comment! And feel free to link up your own Word of the Week below!

Posted in Book Memes, Word of the Week | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Cover Reveal: Fraser (The Minnesota Marshalls #1) by Susan May Warren

If y’all have followed along with the blog for a while, you know I love Susan May Warren’s books. Y’all can see what I had to say about her Sky King Ranch series here.

So it is with great excitement that I share with you the cover for the first in a new series, FRASER.

SERIES OVERVIEW

Jump into this action-packed romantic adventure series featuring the tough, brave and charming Minnesota Marshall family. We first met the family as the hosts for the PEAK Montana Rescue team in Storm Front, when a tornado ravaged their small Minnesota town and trapped their youngest son, Creed and his track team in the rubble. Also in that story was older brother Jonas Marshall, a storm chaser. Readers then met brother and former smokejumper Ned, as well as the oldest brother, Fraser, a Navy SEAL, in Wait for Me, (book 6 in the Montana Rescue series.) Fraser also appeared in the recent Sunburst and Sundown (Sky King ranch series).

But now it’s time for the cousins of the Montana Marshalls, the owners of Marshall Fields Winery in Minnesota, to have their own epic story. From Fraser to Jonas to Ned to Iris, the mysterious sister, to Creed, as well as the parents, Garrett and Jenny, every Marshall has a role to play in this epic, global-slash-midwestern series about how one family just might find themselves in a plot to destroy…or save the world.

Yeah, those Marshalls…what have they gotten themselves into this time?

Dive into the epic series of 2023 – the Minnesota Marshalls!

It all starts with FRASER, releasing February 14 across online retailers and available for the pre-order sale price of $5.99. HOWEVER, if you want to dive into Fraser’s story RIGHT NOW, you can order it from Susie May’s website store immediately, at the retail price of $9.99. Your choice!

#fraser #minnesotamarshalls #susanmaywarren #epicromanticadventure #newseries #romance #cantwaittoread #mustread #coverreveal #coverlove


What do you think? Does this sound like a series you’d read? Leave a comment!

Posted in Christian Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, Cover Reveals, Romance, Suspense | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment