Posted in blog tour, Book reviews

“No Chance Meeting” by Jaye Elliott ~ Book Tour and Review

Looking for a clean romantic read? Check Jaye Elliot’s newly released book, No Chance Meeting. You can read all about it below, and don’t forget to enter the giveaways!

About the Book
Alex Jennings is done with life. After losing her brother in Afghanistan, everything has collapsed around her. Getting laid off from her day job and failing in her art career, she has nowhere left to turn. She once had faith to believe that all things would work together for good, but that faith died with her brother. Now she just wants the pain to end.
Riley Conrad served thirteen years in the military until three bullets sent him home. After a year and a half of physical therapy and scraping together a living, all he wants is to live a simple life and perhaps even open the coffee shop he dreams about. However, the weight of failing his parents’ expectations doesn’t make it easy, and working as a bartender isn’t getting him anywhere fast.
Could a “chance” meeting between Alex and Riley set them both on the path God always intended?
Available now from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and more!
20% of all February sales will go to the Mighty Oaks Warrior Programs.
My Review:
I really enjoyed this contemporary romance story by Jaye Elliott! I’ve read some of her fantasy novels under her other name (Jaye L Knight) and loved those, so was excited to try a new story from her as well. And it didn’t disappoint.No Chance Meeting is a story of struggles and pain, but also a story of relationships and support and hope. It starts out with main character Alex struggling deeply and about to end her life. Thankfully, an occurrence happens to prevent this and sets her on a whole new journey in her life.There was a section between the beginning and middle where it almost felt like the whole topic of suicide was almost unmentioned, though, which I feel a little unlikely. Yes, she had a reason to live now, but I feel like with her being miserable enough to end her life, it wouldn’t be something that wasn’t on her mind 24/7 or nearly. However, the story did work its way back to that and she dealt more with it. And with me mentioning this, I’m not saying that it wasn’t handled well, because this serious topic was handled quite well in this novel, and the seriousness of it was portrayed aptly. For most of the book it was that way. There was just a small section where it was almost forgotten about, which is okay, just something I noticed.I loved the characters relationship – Alex and Riley were a lovely pair, and stronger together. I also love the small town atmosphere, and that ending was super sweet. It was a great amount of romance – nothing over the top, they held accountability for each other, and it was realistic and sweet. The supporting characters were also enjoyable, and I enjoyed each interaction with them. Well, except a bad character or two. ;) But we’re not supposed to like them, so that was an appropriate reaction, haha. ;)All in all, a very sweet read!
Author Guest Post:

This is a scene I ended up cutting that takes place after Alex and Riley visit Riley’s grandpa. As much as I liked it, I just didn’t feel it was necessary for moving the story forward and made the decision to scrap it.

With the heat turned up in her apartment and a steaming cup of coffee, Alex didn’t mind the dreary weather. She stayed in her pajamas while she sat in the living room with her Bible for an hour before she finally dressed in a comfortable pair of jeans and a fleece-lined hoodie. It was one of the first mornings in a long time that she felt good about her day.

In fact, after seeing Joe’s sketches, she had an urge to get out her own sketchbook. She ignored it at first. After all, she was supposed to be taking a break, and not even a week had passed since she’d put her art supplies away. However, after contemplating it for a while, she decided to give it a try. She wouldn’t put too much thought into it and wouldn’t be critical. She would only do it for fun. Beyond that, she would see what happened.

Gathering her sketchpad and container of charcoal pencils, she sat down at the kitchen table with a full mug of coffee to begin. She forced herself not to think but to just draw. Before long, she became engrossed in the lines, the shading, and the smudging. The motions and the creative outlet were like therapy. 

Around noon, a knock at the door startled her from her drawing. She glanced at her hands, which were smeared with charcoal, but got up to answer the door anyway. She was an artist, after all. Getting covered in charcoal or paint was part of the job. Outside, she found not a stranger but Riley standing on her balcony. Had she somehow mixed up her days and was supposed to be heading to work? She did a quick mental calculation. But no, it was Tuesday, one of her days off. 

She gave him a questioning look. His smile said he was up to something, and then he pulled his hand out from behind his back to reveal a bouquet of yellow and orange roses. Her mouth dropped open.

“What are these for?” She took them from him and backed up so he could step inside, out of the rain.

He shrugged. “Our first date was a month ago.”

Alex gaped at him again. “You remembered our one-month anniversary?”

“Well,” he looked a little bashful, “no, but I was looking at the calendar this morning and realized it, so . . .”

Tears pooled in Alex’s eyes at how sweet he was. Though she had always believed there were guys like him out there, she had seriously begun to question whether or not she would ever meet one of them.

“You spoil me too much.” But she gave him a wide smile. “Thank you. I love them.” They were the perfect colors for fall, and she had a lovely aqua vase to put them in.

Riley nodded and then must have noticed her art supplies on the table.

“I know was going to take a break,” Alex said, glancing over at it as well, “but your grandpa inspired me to do a little sketching this morning.” She set the roses down carefully on the counter and retrieved her close-to-finished sketch. “I just have to work on a few more details.”

She handed it to Riley, holding her breath. Even after all this time, showing people her artwork still sent fear of criticism cascading like cold rain into her stomach. However, his smile calmed her. She’d sketched a picture of his grandpa based on a photo a CNA had taken of the three of them yesterday. She had feared she wouldn’t be able to accurately capture Joe’s twinkling eyes but, in the end, she found herself more or less satisfied. At least she hadn’t failed miserably.

“This is great. My granddad would love to see it. Maybe you can bring it next time we visit him.”

“I will.”

Riley handed the sketch back, and Alex laid it on the table where she could add the finishing touches.

“I guess I better head back to the bar,” Riley said.

Alex opened the door for him. Before he walked out, he paused and gave her a soft kiss. It left Alex warm, and happy, and wishing he didn’t have to leave. 

Still leaning close to her, he said, “I’m glad you agreed to that first date.”

“So am I,” she murmured. More than she could ever put into words.

He walked out then, and she hated to close the door on him, but she would have to content herself with waiting to see him again for work tomorrow.

About the Author

Jaye Elliot is an award-winning author, country girl, and hopeless romantic at heart. She loves a good hero and will always sigh happily during the lights scene in Tangled. She writes from her home in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, which she shares with three cats she considers her kids. When not writing romance novels, she pens fantasy and adventure stories as Jaye L. Knight.

Giveaway #1
To celebrate the release of No Chance Meeting, Jaye is giving away a reader bundle that includes a signed copy of NCM, a hand-painted watercolor bookmark, a coffee mug, and a bag of Dove chocolates! Enter using the form below. U.S. entries only. Not open internationally.
Giveaway #2
For her second giveaway, Jaye is offering 3 ebook copies of No Chance Meeting. Open internationally!
 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Tour Stops
 
Friday, February 14
·
Tour Intro at Jaye Elliot
·
Review &
Author Post at
Reading
Anyone
·
Review at Losing the Busyness
Saturday, February 15
·
Author Interview at Angela R. Watts
·
Review & Author Interview at Resting Life
·
Author Post & Excerpt at Lady Grace: A Quiet and Gentle
Spirit
Sunday, February 16
·
Spotlight at The Music of a Story
Monday, February 17
·
Author Post at Morgan Elizabeth Huneke
·
Author Post & Excerpt
at
A Day In The Life
Tuesday, February 18
·
Review at Tricia Mingerink
·
Review and Excerpt at Read Review Rejoice
Wednesday, February
19
·
Review & Author Post at Leah’s Bookshelf
·
Book Spotlight at The Page Dreamer
Thursday, February 20
·
Review at Stories by Firefly
·
Review &
Author Post at
God’s
Peculiar Treasure Rae
·
Author Interview & Post
at
Read Review Rejoice
Friday, February 21
·
Author Post at Backing Books
·
Review at Poetree
Saturday, February 22
·
Tour Wrap Up at Jaye Elliot
Posted in blog tour, Books, Uncategorized

Welcome to Isaiah’s Legacy Blog Hop – Stop #13

 

1 Week ~ 24 Blogs ~ 3 Incredible Prizes!

Welcome to the Blog Tour and Scavenger Hunt for Isaiah’s Legacy by Mesu Andrews! It’s going to be lots of fun – just read through the post and have a good time!

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Learn a little about Isaiah’s Legacy and enter multiple giveaways while picking up CLUES at each stop. Compile all the clues, submit the final PHRASE at the last stop, and you’ll be entered to win one of 3 Grand Prizes

 

What are the prizes? They’re completely unique to the winners! 

 

Mesu will contact each winner personally to chat about what they would most like to see in Israel, and then she’ll SHOP for just the right gift while touring Israel, March 6-19! She’ll then purchase a personal and memorable gift specifically chosen for each of those three winners and ship them to each one when she returns. How fun is that?!

 

How does the Scavenger Hunt & Blog Tour Work?

  • Begin at Stop #1. At the end, you’ll find a CLUE and a link to the next stop. Progress to each stop IN ORDER.
  • Collect all the clues—in order—and submit the full phrase at the last blog stop in the Rafflecopter form. Every stop has a clue, so be sure not to skip any along the way!
  • You may enter the final giveaway only once and win only one grand prize. 
  • The Hunt begins 2/19/20 at noon EDT. Deadline for entries is Tuesday, 02/25 at midnight Eastern.
  • For best results, hunt through our list using Chrome or Firefox as your browser (not Explorer).

 

There is NO RUSH to complete the hunt—you have a whole week! As you visit each blog, it’s our hope that you get to know Mesu’s BFF team and discover the heart behind Isaiah’s Legacy.

 

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Welcome to Stop #13

 

My name is Raechel. I’m excited to celebrate “Isaiah’s Legacy” by Mesu Andrews with you! I love her books and the deep messages they offer.

You can sign up for Mesu’s newsletter and get Adnah’s Legacy, the prequel novella to Isaiah’s Legacy: https://mesuandrews.com/

 

 

 

Thanks for stopping by! Remember to write down your CLUE before clicking to the next stop.

 

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Here’s the Stop #13 Stuff!

 

Clue to write down: A Teacher

Link to STOP #14: A Baker’s Perspective

 

Bookmark STOP #1 so you can check the tour schedule and get back on track if at any point you get lost or find a broken link. 

 

Enjoy the hunt!

 

 

*****************************************************************************

 

 

 

 

Posted in Bethany House, Book reviews

“Veiled in Smoke” by Jocelyn Green ~ Book Review

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“Veiled in Smoke” by Jocelyn Green

Releases February 4th

The Windy City Sage Book One

Review copy from the author/publisher as apart of the launch team

My rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

About the Book:

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(Thank you to the author for sending the amazing prints and ash confetti!<3)

 

My Thoughts:

 
I must admit I have some conflicted feelings regarding this book. It is brilliantly written, and I definitely enjoyed the story, but there was an aspect that…well, I guess it was a trigger for me, and therefore how it ended was a bit of a wound to me.
I couldn’t deeply connect with main character Meg. Going into the story, I assumed that this story would be equally shared between the two sisters, and gravitated more towards Sylvie. Though her story was more of a side story, and I struggled with some of the ways she was treated.
Before I go on to explain some of what triggered me, I do want to preface it with saying how beautifully the author writes. This novel is gorgeous, and the story told vibrant and captivating. I still consider it a good read, worth my time, and I look forward to reading the following books in this series. The history was portrayed wonderfully, and the tragedy real.
As I don’t wish to spoil the book for anyone, I will warn that you may want to wait on reading the rest of this review until you have read the book for yourself. So, with that being said….
I really liked Sylvie. I really liked the relationship that blossomed between her and Jasper. It felt like throughout the novel though, that her feelings and her personal journey were not very well respected by the main character and supporting characters. It was really all about Meg and her end happiness. I know we are to root for the main character, but I couldn’t help but feel triggered by the fact that Sylvie was so often not given a voice or validated in any of her feelings. So yes, this ended up being a trigger for me but that doesn’t mean it will be for anyone else.
I have hopes that the next book in this story will be about Sylvie. However, I confess I still feel sorrow that she couldn’t have the ending she wanted in this book.
Again, my feelings will not reflect everyone’s, and as I also said this author is an excellent writer so her books are definitely worth the read!
Quotes:
“Sylvie rarely won a argument with Meg. She didn’t even like to disagree with her, preferring all the conflict in her life to be contained within the pages of books, where it was resolved by the last chapter…”
“But if she’d learned anything during the last several years, it was that the body repaired itself far easier than the spirit.”
“What a mercy that God was not limited by that which limited her. What a grace that His power and presence remained, regardless of whether she felt close to them. She must trust Him for what she could not see. Wasn’t that the essence of faith? Her hands were bound. His were not.”
“We will thank God as soon as we can.”
*I received a copy of this book from the publishers; all thoughts expressed are entirely my own.
Posted in Book reviews

“On Wings of Devotion” by Roseanna M. White ~ Book Review

On Wings of Devotion (The Codebreakers, #2)

“On Wings of Devotion” by Roseanna M White

Book Two in the CodeBreakers series

Review copy from the publishers

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About the Book:

All of England thinks Phillip Camden a monster–a man who deliberately caused the deaths of his squadron. But as nurse Arabelle Denler watches the so-dubbed “Black Heart” every day, she sees something far different: a hurting man desperate for mercy. And when their paths twist together and he declares himself her new protector, she realizes she has her own role to play in his healing.
Phillip Camden would have preferred to die that day with his squadron rather than be recruited to the Admiralty’s codebreaking division. The threats he receives daily are no great surprise and, in his opinion, well deserved. What comes as a shock is the reborn desire to truly live that Arabelle inspires in him.
But when an old acquaintance shows up and seems set on using him in a plot that has the codebreakers of Room 40 in a frenzy, new affections are put to the test.
 

 

 

My Thoughts:

 

This was so good! I’m not surprised – every single one of the books I’ve read by this author have been amazing and quickly become favorites. On Wings of Devotion was no exception! The writing is seamless, the plot amazing, and the characters just astonishingly lovely. Phillip Camden is a hero that is rough around the edges, but what an amazing heart he has, truly. I love his character. Same goes for Arabelle – she was utterly fantastic. So kind hearted, so down-to-earth and so real. The pain she felt at wanting to be chosen, to be cared for and about echoed one in my own heart, and so I bonded to her all the more for that. I loved both hers and Cam’s journey. And their relationship was so endearing.I want more of their story, honestly. Does it have to be the end? I know I will adore the next book in this amazing series, and will fall in love with those characters too, but for right now…I want to hang out with Cam and Ara a bit longer. ^.^Superb WWI historical fiction with everything good. <3

Posted in Book reviews

“Isaiah’s Legacy” by Mesu Andrews ~ Book Review

 

Isaiah's Legacy (Prophets and Kings #3)

“Isaiah’s Legacy” by Mesu Andrews

Sequel to Isaiah’s Daughter//Biblical Fiction

Releases February 18th

My Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

 

 

About the Book:

At eight years old, Shulle has known only life in a small village with her loving but peculiar father. When Uncle Shebna offers shelter in Jerusalem in exchange for Shulle’s help tutoring King Manasseh, Judah’s five-year-old co-regent who displays the same peculiarities as her father, she’s eager to experience the royal court. But Shulle soon realizes the limits of her father’s strict adherence to Yahweh’s Law when Uncle Shebna teaches her of the starry hosts and their power.
Convinced Judah must be freed from Yahweh’s chains, she begins the subtle swaying of young Manasseh, using her charm and skills on the boy no one else understands. When King Hezekiah dies, twelve-year-old Manasseh is thrust onto Judah’s throne, bitter at Yahweh and eager to marry the girl he adores. Assyria’s crown prince favors Manasseh and twists his brilliant mind toward cruelty, beginning Shulle’s long and harrowing journey to discover the Yahweh she’d never known, guided with loving wisdom by Manasseh’s mother: Isaiah’s daughter, the heartbroken Hephzibah. Amid Judah’s dark days, a desperate remnant emerges, claiming the Lord’s promise, “Though we’re helpless now, we’re never hopeless–because we serve El Shaddai.” Shulle is among them, a girl who becomes a queen through Isaiah’s legacy.

 

My Thoughts:

 

What a beautiful book. Going into it, I knew that it might be bit heavy, and more…hard to read as it showed the depravity of the nation under pagan worshipping, and how wicked Manasseh had become. And it was hard in that aspect. But by no means did this story ever drag on or have cause for me to want to put it down.
Brilliantly written, we are thrust into the characters lives and connected so deeply, that the things that cause them pain echo pain in our own hearts just from watching. Likewise, the joy – at the end especially – finds rest upon our soul.
I loved the message of this book. That no one is ever too far for Yahweh to reach, to redeem, to call back home to Him. And King Manasseh’s story is an exceptional tale of this. And not only his, but Meshullemeth’s (Shulle) – her story equally wrote itself upon my heart and touched me deeply. I am still pondering the truths found in this story, and how everything Yahweh promised was fulfilled – just maybe not in their preferred timing. Isn’t that so often the case? We want immediate results, and it’s so easy to doubt when we don’t see His immediate provision or answer…but sometimes those answers don’t come right away. But that doesn’t mean the fulfillment won’t come eventually, right at the time Yahweh desires it to come. Like I said, this theme especially is one that I am personally pondering in my own life, and I am thankful for the corresponding truths in this book to bring it to light.
Oh yes, there was a great deal of pain, a great deal of sorrow in Isaiah’s Legacy. Watching it all play out was hard, but it was also necessary, and it only amplified the redeeming end all the more.
The two books in this series, Isaiah’s Daughter and Isaiah’s Legacy now are definitely two of my most favorite books by this author. They are beautiful and full of meaning, and I look forward to going back over them again.
Quotes:
This book is full of so many good quotes/sections I tabbed, and I wanted to make them intor graphics but our computer has been too slow to do so. =/ But here they are typed out. Maybe eventually I can make them into graphics.
 
 
 
“Why did others ridicule what they couldn’t understand?”
“I don’t know why Yahweh gave me only fifteen more years. But I do know this. Though we don’t always understand God’s plan, we can trust His goodness for a future we can’t yet see.”
“Every man – especially a king – must search his heart to discover what he believes about Yahweh, my love. Nasseh is no exception. He’s simply forced into these decisions younger than most.”
“The blacker the darkness, the brighter God’s spark.”
“There is only one God, my queen, who loves His people enough to pursue you with such powerful detail. Yahweh must have a mighty plan for you, indeed.”
“We learn the Truth in daylight so we can walk in darkness.”
“I don’t believe Yahweh is angered by sincere questions or even when we express anger, but He commands our trust, my king. I hope someday you can trust Him.”
“We’re helpless in this moment, Shulle, but we’re never hopeless. Not as long as we serve El Shaddai, the Almighty One.”
“My God is good. He has a plan. And His victory will somehow be bigger than our sorrow.”
“Never begin a sentence with ‘Yahweh can’t’. Our minds are too small to imagine what He can do.”
“Marvel at the moon and stars, Manasseh, but worship the God who hung them in the sky.”
“No place on earth is beyond Yahweh’s reach – including a man’s heart.”
“Yahweh doesn’t hate you. No matter how many Yahweh followers you kill, we’ll scream forgiveness from our graves…May Yahweh deal with you as gently as you’ll allow, while He draws your heart back to Him.”
“Can you trust My love when you don’t know My plan?”
*I received a copy of this book as apart of the launch team; I was not required to write a positive review.

Posted in Book reviews

“The Heir of Ariad” by Niki Florica ~ Book Review

The Heir of Ariad

The Heir of Ariad by Niki Florica

Fantasy/allegorical

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

About the Book:

The weight of a vanished father’s legacy and the secrets of the past have forced Kyrian to carve a place among his people at the price of his own sweat and blood. Ariad is withering. The Skies seem a strange place to die of thirst, but no one can fetch the Rains against the tyrant king’s will, and no one but the Creator who has vanished into legend can kill an invisible king.
But there is a force at work beyond Kyrian’s sight. A powerful, masterful will. Suddenly there is blood on his hands, the Skies are filled with enemies, and the only way to escape a dark end is to flee the clouds forever. But there in the Lands waits a powerful prophecy, along with a powerful weapon, and now as Ariad withers to dust all hope may rest with the one young mortal who fled his home a fugitive and must return to it a king.

 

My Thoughts:

 

This is quite the fantasy novel! I was very impressed with the writing talent shown, and the complexity of the whole story.
For me, it was a bit of a heavier read that took a while to get through, but that didn’t detract from my enjoyment at all. The Heir of Ariad is an excellent story with a well-crafted fantasy world. I loved all the symbolism that pointed to the Biblical accounts of both Moses and David. The verses included at the beginning of most of the chapters was an excellent addition.
The characters are all so well-formed, and easy to relate to and understand. When you pick up this book, you are embarking on an adventure as you journey right along side Kyrian and his new discovery.
There was one particular character that I was extremely impressed with – the Robin. His character was one that was complicated, and easy to hate at first. But his whole….journey has been amazing to see, and I am very hopeful we get to see more of him in this series!
Be prepared to want the sequel! That ending only begs to be continued!!
*I received a copy from the author.
Posted in Book reviews

“The Dating Charade” by Melissa Ferguson ~ Book Review

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The Dating Charade by Melissa Ferguson

Contemporary romance

Review copy from the publishers

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About the book:

Just when you think you’ve met your match . . . the charade begins.
Cassie Everson is an expert at escaping bad first dates. And, after years of meeting, greeting, and running from the men who try to woo her, Cassie is almost ready to retire her hopes for a husband—and children—altogether.
But fate has other plans, and Cassie’s online dating profile catches the eye of firefighter Jett Bentley. In Jett’s memory, Cassie Everson is the unreachable girl-of-legend from their high school days. Nervously, he messages her, setting off a chain of events that forces a reluctant Cassie back into the dating game.
No one is more surprised than Cassie when her first date with Jett is a knockout. But when they both go home and find three children dropped in their laps—each—they independently decide to do the right and mature thing: hide the kids from each other while sorting it all out. What could go wrong?
Melissa Ferguson’s hilarious and warmhearted debut reminds us that love can come in very small packages—and that sometimes our best-laid plans aren’t nearly as rewarding and fun as the surprises that come our way.

 

The Dating Charade

My Thoughts:

Wow! This book will surely make it on my favorites of 2019 list! What a story. I was absolutely captivated through every page, and didn’t want to put it down – in fact, I rarely did put it down, devouring almost all of it within the day. It was so good!Melissa Ferguson knows how to write an exceedingly enjoyable novel that remains packed full of heart and love. Truly, this book floored me. I was expecting a nice, fun read, but this far exceeded that expectation. The characters were amazing, the relationships fantastic, the tales humorous, and the plot so heartfelt and superb. The realities of the topic dealt with (fostering, child abuse, etc.) definitely pull on the heart strings – the author did a great job of writing it truthfully and with grace.I have nothing but good to say for this book and definitely want to re-read it. Adding Melissa Ferguson to my favorite authors list now!