~Review~ As Young As We Feel ~ CFBA

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

As Young As We Feel

David C. Cook; New edition (March 1, 2010)


Melody Carlson


Over the years, Melody Carlson has worn many hats, from pre-school teacher to youth counselor to political activist to senior editor. But most of all, she loves to write! Currently she freelances from her home. In the past eight years, she has published over ninety books for children, teens, and adults--with sales totaling more than two million and many titles appearing on the ECPA Bestsellers List. Several of her books have been finalists for, and winners of, various writing awards. And her "Diary of a Teenage Girl" series has received great reviews and a large box of fan mail.

She has two grown sons and lives in Central Oregon with her husband and chocolate lab retriever. They enjoy skiing, hiking, gardening, camping and biking in the beautiful Cascade Mountains.


Is there room in one little hometown for four very different Lindas to reinvent their lives … together?

Once upon a time in a little town on the Oregon coast lived four Lindas—all in the same first-grade classroom. So they decided to go by their middle names. And form a club. And be friends forever. But that was forty-seven years and four very different lives ago. Now a class reunion has brought them all together in their old hometown—at a crossroads in their lives.

Janie is a high-powered lawyer with a load of grief. Abby is a lonely housewife in a beautiful oceanfront empty nest. Marley is trying to recapture the artistic free spirit she lost in an unhappy marriage. And the beautiful Caroline is scrambling to cope with her mother’s dementia and a Hollywood career that never really happened. Together, they’re about to explore the invigorating reality that even the most eventful life has second acts … and friendship doesn’t come with a statue of limitations.

If you would like to read the first chapter of As Young As We Feel, go HERE.

Watch the Video:

~Review~ Songbird Under A German Moon

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Songbird Under a German Moon

The year is 1945. The war is over and 21-year-old Betty Lake has been invited to Europe to sing in a USO tour for American soldiers who now occupy Hitler's Germany. The first nights performance is a hit. Betty becomes enthralled with the applause, the former Nazi-held mansion they're housed in and the attention of Frank Witt, the US Army Signal Corp Photographer. Yet the next night this songbird is ready to fly the coop when Betty's dear friend, Kat, turns up missing. Betty soon realizes Franks photographs could be the key to finding Kat. Betty and Frank team up against post-war Nazi influences and the two lovebirds' hearts may find the answers...in each other.
But will they have a chance for their romance to sing? The truth will be revealed under a German moon.

My Review - As I said in an earlier review, this is the year for WWII stories. I am not a fan of this time era, however, this was a page turner from PG 1 all the way to PG 330! Being a former Navy brat, and ex Navy wife, I have some knowledge about the groups that go over to entertain the troops. My Dad was in Nam, and my Ex was in the Gulf and Somolia. Tricia's excellent research and beautiful story telling made this book a great read from start to finish! I highly recommend it! I have to say it really doesn't matter what your favorite time period is you will be swept up in the story and taken away.

~Review~ Love In Mid Air

Monday, March 29, 2010

My Review - A great book that strikes the cord in every woman at some point in their life. I found myself thinking about not only the book but the characters for days even after I'd closed the book. I highly recommend it and I believe this is one that you can re-read and enjoy time and again.

~Book Review~ Love Finds You In Homestead Iowa

Sunday, March 28, 2010

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Love Finds You in Homestead, Iowa

Summerside Press (March 1, 2010)


Melanie Dobson


Melanie Beroth Dobson is the author of the inspirational novels Together for Good (2006), Going for Broke (2007), The Black Cloister (2008), Love Finds You in Liberty, Indiana (2009), Love Finds You in Homestead, Iowa (2010), Refuge on Crescent Hill (2010), and The Silent Order (2010) as well as the co-author of Latte for One and Loving It! A Single Woman's Guide to Living Life to Its Fullest (2000).

Prior to launching Dobson Media Group in 1999, Melanie was the corporate publicity manager at Focus on the Family where she was responsible for the publicity of events, products, films, and TV specials. Melanie received her undergraduate degree in journalism from Liberty University and her master's degree in communication from Regent University. She has worked in the fields of publicity and journalism for fifteen years including two years as a publicist for The Family Channel.

Melanie and her husband, Jon, met in Colorado Springs in 1997 at Vanguard Church. Jon works in the field of computer animation. Since they've been married, the Dobsons have relocated numerous times including stints in Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, Colorado, Berlin, and Southern California. These days they are enjoying their new home in the Pacific Northwest.

Jon and Melanie have adopted their two daughters —Karly (6) and Kinzel (5). When Melanie isn't writing or entertaining their girls, she enjoys exploring ghost towns and dusty back roads, traveling, hiking, line dancing, and reading inspirational fiction.


Times are hard in 1894. Desperate for work, former banker Jacob Hirsch rides the rails west from Chicago with his four-year-old daughter, Cassie. When a life-threatening illness strands the pair in Homestead, Iowa, the local Amana villagers welcome the father and daughter into their peaceful society. Liesel, a young Amana woman, nurses Cassie back to health, and the Homestead elders offer Jacob work. But Jacobs growing interest in Liesel complicates his position in the Amanas. Will he fight to stay in the only place that feels like home, even if it means giving up the woman he loves? Or will Liesel leave her beloved community to face the outside world with Jacob and Cassie at her side?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Love Finds You in Homestead, Iowa, go HERE.


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Everyone loves Babies . . . Coming on Mother's Day is a new film showing the lives of 4 new Babies.

I am a BZZAgent and I am promoting this movie as an agent.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

On The Road Home

Port Yonder Press; 1st edition (March 3, 2010)


Terry Burns


Terry has over 30 books in print, including work in a dozen short story collections and four non-fiction books plus numerous articles and short stories.

His last book Beyond the Smoke is a 2009 winner of the Will Rogers Medallion for best youth fiction and a nominee for the Spur Award from the Western Writers of America. He has a three book Mysterious Ways series out from David C Cook, and Trails of the Dime Novel from Echelon Press.

A graduate of West Texas State he did post graduate work at Southern Methodist University. Terry plans to continue writing inspirational fiction as well as working as an agent for Hartline Literary Agency. Terry is a native Texan Living in Amarillo, Texas with his lovely wife Saundra.


In our sound-byte society, short stories and poems will always have a place, especially when they've been penned by the likes of Terry Burns. This, the first of four in The Sagebrush Collection, is a compilation of fictional, autobiographical, and fiction-based-on-fact shorts and poems.

Through fluent cowboy-speak, author Terry Burns shares his heart with these sometimes somber, often humorous, always engaging glimpses of life. From short stories about time machines and troubled marriages to poems of roses and hauntingly cold winds, you’ll find much to savor on the pages within.

A born storyteller, Burns style is natural, conversational, and above all real. He’s a fifth generation Irish tale-weaver and a fourth generation Texas Teller of Tall Tales. Storytelling comes as natural to him as breathing.

Come along with Terry as he journeys “On the Road Home”. You’ll be glad you did.

If you would like to read the first chapter of On The Road Home, go HERE.

Monday, March 22, 2010

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

Deliver Us From Evil

B&H Academic (February 1, 2010)

***Special thanks to Julie Gwinn of B&H Publishing Group for sending me a review copy.***


Robin Caroll has authored eight previous books including Bayou Justice and Melody of Murder. She gives back to the writing community as conference director for the American Christian Fiction Writers organization. A proud southerner through and through, Robin lives with her husband and three daughters in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Visit the author's website.

Product Details:

List Price: $14.99
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: B&H Academic (February 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0805449809
ISBN-13: 978-0805449808


Tuesday, 3:30 p.m.
FBI Field Office
Knoxville, Tennessee

Jonathan’s throat closed as he stared at the building from the parking lot. He gripped the package tight in his arthritic hands. Could he do this? Turn over evidence that would implicate him?

His heart raced and he froze. Not the best time for his atrial fibrillation to make an appearance. Despite being on the heart transplant list for eight months, it looked like his progressed heart disease would do him in. The most important reason he couldn’t go to prison—he’d never get a heart and would die. While Carmen wanted him to confess his crimes, she wouldn’t want him to die. The memory of saying good-bye to his beloved mere hours ago scorched his soul.

Her eyes fluttered open. Those blue orbs, which had once sparkled even in the absence of light, now blinked flat and lifeless.

He swallowed hard.

“Jonathan,” her voice croaked, “it’s time.”

Tears burned the backs of his eyes, and he rested his hand over her parchmentlike skin. “No, Carmen. Please, let me get the medicine.”

Her eyelids drooped and she gasped. Air wheezed in her lungs. “Sweetheart, the fight’s . . . gone from me.” She let out a hiss, faint and eerie. “The cancer’s . . . won.”

Jonathan laid his lips against her cheek, her skin cold and clammy, as if in preparation for the morgue. How could she continue to refuse the medicine? Even though she didn’t approve of his means of acquisition, the drugs had kept her alive for five years. Five years he cherished every minute of. He’d do anything to keep her alive and the pain at bay—the intense pain that had become her constant companion these last two weeks. It killed him to witness her agony.

She licked her bottom lip, but no moisture soaked into the cracked flesh. “You’ve done . . . your best by me, Jonathan. I know . . . you meant . . . no harm to . . . anyone.” Her eyes lit as they once had. “Oh, how I’ve enjoyed loving you.”

His insides turned to oatmeal. Stubborn woman—she’d allow herself to die, all because she discovered how he’d gotten the money.

“Promise me . . . you’ll . . . tell the . . . truth. Admit what . . . you’ve done.” Her breath rattled. “What you’ve . . . all done.”

Pulling himself from the wretched memory, Jonathan breathed through the heat tightening his chest. He’d secure himself the best deal possible—immunity—or he wouldn’t decipher the papers. And without him no one could make sense of the accounting system he’d created more than five years ago. Officials hadn’t a clue.

With a deep breath he headed to the guardhouse in front of the fenced FBI building. His legs threatened to rebel, stiffening with every step. He forced himself to keep moving, one foot in front of the other.

At the guardhouse, a man behind bulletproof glass looked up. “May I help you?”

“I need to . . . see someone.”

“About what, sir?”

“I have some information regarding a crime.” He waved the file he held.

“One moment, sir, and someone will be with you.”

Jonathan stared at the cloudy sky. He could still turn back, get away scot-free. His heartbeat sped. The world blurred. No, he couldn’t lose consciousness now, nor could he go back on his promise. He owed it to Carmen. No matter what happened, he’d honor Carmen’s dying wish.

“Sir?” A young man in a suit stood beside the fenced entry, hand resting on the butt of his gun. “May I help you?”

Jonathan lifted the file. “I have some evidence regarding an ongoing crime ring.”

The agent motioned him toward a metal-detector arch. “Come through this way, sir.”

Jonathan’s steps wavered. He dragged his feet toward the archway.

A car door creaked. Jonathan glanced over his shoulder just as two men in full tactical gear stormed toward them. He had a split second to recognize one of the men’s eyes, just before gunfire erupted.

A vise gripped Jonathan’s heart, and he slumped to the dirty tile floor, the squeezing of his heart demanding his paralysis.

Too late. I’m sorry, Carmen.

Two Weeks Later—Wednesday, 3:45 p.m.
Golden Gloves Boxing of Knoxville


Brannon Callahan’s head jerked backward. She swiped her headgear with her glove.

“You aren’t concentrating on your form. You’re just trying to whale on me.” Steve Burroughs, her supervisor and sparring partner, bounced on the balls of his feet.

“Then why am I the one getting hit?” She threw a right jab that missed his jaw.

He brushed her off with his glove. “Don’t try to street fight me. Box.”

She clamped down on her mouthpiece and threw an uppercut with her left fist. It made contact, sending vibrations up her arm.

He wobbled backward, then got his balance. “Nice shot.”

It felt good to hit something. Hard. Sparring with Steve was the best form of venting. The energy had to be spent somehow—why not get a workout at the same time? She ducked a right cross, then followed through with a left-right combination. Both shots made full contact.

Steve spit out his mouthpiece and leaned against the ropes. “I think that’s enough for today, girl. I’m an old man, remember?”

She couldn’t fight the grin. Although only in his late forties, the chief ranger looked two decades older. With gray hair, hawk nose, and skin like tanned leather, Steve had already lived a lifetime.

She removed her mouthpiece, gloves, and headgear before sitting on the canvas. “Old? You’re still kickin’ me in the ring.”

He tossed her a towel and sat beside her. “So you wanna tell me what’s got you all hot and bothered this afternoon?”

She shrugged.

“Come on, spit it out. I know something’s gnawing at you, just like you were picking a fight with me in the ring. What’s up?”

How could she explain? “I’m not exactly keen that the district feels there’s a need for another pilot in the park.” She tightened the scrunchie keeping her hair out of her face.

“That’s a compliment—having you on staff has been so successful they want to expand.”

“But I have to train him. Did you notice his arrogance?” She ripped at the tape bound around her knuckles. “He’s nothing more than a young upstart with an ego bigger than the helicopter.” While only thirty-six, she often felt older than Steve looked.

“You’re so good, you can come across a bit intimidating at first, girl.” Steve grabbed the ropes and pulled to standing, then offered her a hand. “Give him a chance.”

She let Steve tug her up. “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Even if he had maturity, I still have to train him. With all the rescues we’ve been called out on of late . . . well, I really don’t have the time.” She exited the ring. “Like those kids yesterday.” She shook her head as she waited for Steve to join her on the gym floor. “Their stupidity almost cost them their lives.”

“They were young, Brannon.”

“Please. Any amateur with half a brain should know better than to try to climb Clingmans Dome in winter.” Didn’t people realize if something happened to them they’d leave behind devastated family and friends? Loved ones who would mourn them forever? She fought against the familiar pain every time she participated in a search and rescue. All because people hadn’t taken necessary precautions.

“They didn’t know any better.”

“It takes a special kind of stupid not to have researched your climb.” Most SARs could be avoided if people planned a little more. It ripped her apart that so many parents, grandparents, siblings . . . fiancées . . . survived to deal with such grief. She’d tasted the bitterness of grief—twice—and the aftertaste still lingered.

Steve paused outside the locker rooms and shifted his sparring gear to one hand. “I agree, but most people don’t see the dangers we do every day.” He tapped her shoulder. “Hit the showers, champ. You stink.”

She laughed as she headed into the ladies’ locker room. Maybe Steve was right and the new pilot just made a lousy first impression. Maybe he’d be easy to train.

Please, God, let it be so.

Friday, 2:15 p.m.
US Marshals Office, Howard Baker Federal Courthouse
Knoxville, Tennessee

“You want me to escort a heart?” Roark struggled to keep his voice calm. He tapped the butt of his Beretta, welcoming it back to its rightful place on his hip.

Senior US Marshal Gerald Demott glared. “Look, I know you think this is a slight, but it’s important. And for your first assignment back on the job . . .”

“IA cleared me of all wrongdoing. I’m seeing the shrink and everything.” He gritted his teeth and exhaled. “I’ve been released to return to active duty.”

“This is active. It’s a field assignment, and it’s important. Here’s the case information.” Demott passed him a folder, then glanced at his watch. “You’d better hurry or you’ll miss your flight.”

Roark grabbed the file and turned to go.


He looked back at his boss. “Yeah?”

Demott held out Roark’s badge. “You might want to take this with you, too.”

Roark accepted the metal emblem, then clipped it to his belt before marching out of Demott’s office. A heart. His job was to escort a human heart from North Carolina to Knoxville. Any rookie could handle that. But no, they still didn’t trust him enough to handle a real assignment.

He’d done everything they asked—took a medical leave of absence while Internal Affairs went over every painful minute
of his failed mission, saw the shrink they demanded he speak to every week since Mindy’s death, answered their relentless questions. The shrink reiterated he’d been forgiven for acting on his own.

Maybe one day he’d forgive himself. How many innocent lives would he have to save for his conscience to leave him be?

Roark slipped into the car, then headed to the airport. But to be assigned a heart transport? Not only was it wrong, it was downright insulting. After almost fifteen years as a marshal, he’d earned the benefit of the doubt from his supervisors. Especially Demott. His boss should know him better, know he’d only disregard orders if it was a matter of life and death.

But Mindy Pugsley died. They’d all died.

He pushed the nagging voice from his mind. Even Dr. Martin had advised him not to dwell on the past. On what had gone wrong. On disobeying a direct order.

If only Mindy didn’t haunt his dreams.

Roark touched the angry scar that ran along his right cheekbone to his chin. A constant reminder that he’d failed, that he’d made a mistake that took someone’s life. He’d have to live with the pain for the rest of his life.

He skidded the car into the airport’s short-term parking lot. After securing the car and gathering the case folder, Roark grabbed his coat. Snowflakes pelted downward, swirling on the bursts of wind and settling on the concrete. The purple hues of the setting sun streaked across the mountain peaks beyond the runways, making the January snow grab the last hope of light.

Yes, he’d handle this mundane assignment, then tell Demott he wanted back on real active duty. Making a difference would be the best thing for him. Would make him feel whole again.

~ Review ~ Here Burns My Candle

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Author Bio:

LIZ CURTIS HIGGS is the author of twenty-seven books with three million copies in print, including: her best-selling historical novels, Thorn in My Heart, Fair Is the Rose, Christy Award-winner Whence Came a Prince, and Grace in Thine Eyes, a Christy Award finalist; My Heart’s in the Lowlands: Ten Days in Bonny Scotland, an armchair travel guide to Galloway; and her contemporary novels, Mixed Signals, a Rita Award finalist, and Bookends, a Christy Award finalist. Visit the author’s extensive website at http://www.lizcurtishiggs.com/.


A mother who cannot face her future.
A daughter who cannot escape her past.

Lady Elisabeth Kerr is a keeper of secrets. A Highlander by birth and a Lowlander by marriage, she honors the auld ways, even as doubts and fears stir deep within her.
Her husband, Lord Donald, has secrets of his own, well hidden from the household, yet whispered among the town gossips.
His mother, the dowager Lady Marjory, hides gold beneath her floor and guilt inside her heart. Though her two abiding passions are maintaining her place in society and coddling her grown sons, Marjory’s many regrets, buried in Greyfriars Churchyard, continue to plague her.
One by one the Kerr family secrets begin to surface, even as bonny Prince Charlie and his rebel army ride into Edinburgh in September 1745, intent on capturing the crown.
A timeless story of love and betrayal, loss and redemption, flickering against the vivid backdrop of eighteenth-century Scotland , Here Burns My Candle illumines the dark side of human nature, even as hope, the brightest of tapers, lights the way home.

You can purchase a copy of this book here http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/catalog.php?isbn=9781400070015

My Review: Liz is one of my favorite authors. I can't tell you how excited I was to read this book. Talk about inventive! She took the story of Ruth and Naomi and placed it in Scotland. Liz's historical and Biblical research was superb. The book grabs you from the first word and doesn't let go until the last page! I can't wait to read the next book in the series. If you are a historical fiction fan I can't highly recommend this one enough! I give this book a lighthouse and shine a light on it for pointing a path to God!


Thursday, March 18, 2010

I have 3 DEBUT CD'S of this artist to giveaway!!! Let me say that I am a classic rock fan, but I love this CD! This giveaway is only open to the United States. No P.O. Boxes. To enter you must leave your email address. If you do not your entry will be deleted. To receive extra entries you can do the following . . . 1. if you are already follower of this blog say so in your original comment; DO NOT LEAVE AN ADDITONAL COMMENT. 2. If you are a NEW follower leave an additional comment. 3. Tweet about this on twitter, and leave an additional comment with the link. 4. Blog about this giveaway and leave the link. This will start today, Thursday, March 18 and I'll draw the winners via a randomizer on Thursday, April 1st.
It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

A Case for Love

Barbour Books (February 1, 2010)

***Special thanks to Angie Brillhart, Publicist, of Barbour Publishing for sending me a review copy.***


Author Kaye Dacus enjoyed her visits to a local television station while researching this book. She likes to say she writes “inspirational romance with a sense of humor.” She lives in Nashville and graduated from Seton Hill University’s Master of Arts in Writing Popular Fiction program. She is an active member and former Vice President of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW).

Visit the author's website.

Product Details:

List Price: $10.97
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Barbour Books (February 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1602604568
ISBN-13: 978-1602604568


“You did what?”

Forbes Guidry sank into the tall-backed leather chair, extremities numb, and stared at the couple sitting across the desk from him. As a partner in the largest law firm in Bonneterre, Louisiana, he’d heard a lot of shocking things over the fourteen years he’d been practicing. But nothing had hit him quite like this.

“We eloped.” His sister held up her left hand where a diamond wedding band had been added below the antique engagement ring she’d sported for the past three months. “I know you were looking forward to being Major’s best man, which is why we’re telling you before breaking it to the rest of the family.”

He hardly spared a glance at his best friend—now his brother-in-law—before pinning his gaze on his sister. “Meredith, this is a joke, right? What about the meeting Monday with Anne—the plans we discussed?” Sure, Meredith had been a little too quiet during that meeting, had voiced concerns about how big the wedding seemed to be growing, but she’d been coming off working a huge event that weekend and had been tired. . .hadn’t she?

“Things were getting out of hand—had already gone too far.”

“Stop.” Forbes fought the urge to press his hands over his ears. “Way too much information.”

Major chuckled; Meredith frowned at both of them. “Oh, for mercy’s sake. I’m talking about the wedding plans. Neither of us wanted a big wedding, but every time we met with Anne—or you, or anyone in the family—it grew exponentially. Especially once Mom and Dad stuck their oars in and started making lists of all of their business acquaintances that needed to be invited.”

Forbes stared at his sister, dumbfounded. He prided himself on knowing exactly what each member of his family was thinking before they ever thought it. How had this blindsided him so completely?

He finally turned his attention on Major. “When you came in Tuesday to talk about the restaurant, did you already have this planned?”

“No. Not planned. We’d discussed it, but it wasn’t until that night when we made the decision.” Major had the good grace to look abashed.

And you didn’t call me? Forbes reined in the childish words with a tight fist of control. He faced his sister again. “When and where did you get married?”

“Yesterday, when Mom and Dad met us at Beausoleil Pointe Center for lunch with Major’s mom. We’d asked the chaplain to perform the ceremony, and we got married in the pavilion where Major proposed to me.”

Forbes turned away from the dewy-eyed look Meredith gave her new husband, feeling ill. That would explain why Meredith hadn’t shown up for dinner with the siblings and cousins last night. He’d just assumed she was working overtime preparing for an event this weekend.

When the silence stretched, Forbes looked at them again.

Meredith’s eyes narrowed speculatively at Forbes. “Major, would you mind if I had a private word with my brother?”

“Sure. No problem.” Major stood, smoothing the front of his chinos. “I–I’ll wait for you out in the car.”

“Thanks.” Meredith never pulled her gaze away from Forbes—giving him the look that had always been able to make him squirm.

Forbes watched his friend leave the office, then pressed his lips together and faced his sister again.

“What is it that bothers you most? That you aren’t going to be best man, that you don’t get to be involved and have a say in the wedding plans, or that you didn’t see this coming?” Meredith crossed her legs and clasped her hands around her knee, her expression betraying smugness and amusement.

What bothered him most was that over the past six or eight months, Meredith had slowly been pulling away from the family. Ever since she’d bought that house against his—and their parents’—advice, she’d started keeping secrets, spending less time with them. As the oldest, it was his responsibility to keep his six brothers and sisters in line, to watch out for and protect them, and to guide them in making their decisions. Mom and Dad had laid that burden on him early in life, and he’d gladly carried it. But how could he express that to Meredith without coming across sounding like a little boy who hadn’t gotten his way?

“I’m not bothered, just surprised. You’re the last person in the family I’d expect to do something without planning it out well in advance.” He gave her his most charming grin. “It is what you do for a living, after all.”

She responded with a half smile. “And thus the reason for eloping. Between the busiest event-load we’ve ever had, the Warehouse Row project, and Major getting ready for the groundbreaking on the restaurant, we were just tired of schedules and checklists and menus and seating charts. Now Marci won’t feel like her wedding is being overshadowed by her oldest sister’s, since she decided to plan a Christmas wedding and we didn’t want to wait that long.”

He could see her point, but. . . “Don’t you feel like you’ve cheated yourself out of the wedding you always wanted? Growing up, you and Anne used to talk about your dream weddings.”

Meredith shrugged. “Anne always had the ideas. I guess that’s why she’s been such a great success as a wedding planner—every week she had bigger and grander ideas. Whenever I really thought about it, I couldn’t imagine myself in the big dress, my hair all done up, standing there in front of that many people. I guess I never dreamed about a wedding—I just dreamed about falling in love and being married.”

Come to think about it, Forbes couldn’t picture his jeans–and–T-shirt sister in a fluffy white gown, either. He ran his finger along the edge of the desk blotter.

“And look at the bright side: Now you don’t have to find a date for the wedding.”

He released a derisive sound in the back of his throat. “Yes, since that worked out so well at Anne’s wedding—for my date, anyway.”

“How do you always manage to find these women who’re just trying to make their boyfriends jealous?”

He shrugged.

“You know, I know someone I think would be perfect for you, if you’d like me to see if she’d be agreeable to being set up on a blind date with you.”

His insides quivered at the idea. “Thank you kindly, but I’ll have to pass and just leave it up to chance. As I told George Laurence a long time ago, when God’s ready for me to fall in love, He’ll throw the right woman into my path.”

“Uh, did you think that maybe your sisters’ and cousins’ attempts to set you up on dates might be God’s way of throwing the right woman in your path?”

“Not unless He’s shared something with you He hasn’t told me.” Forbes rounded the desk and held out his hand to his sister. She rose, and he pulled her into a hug. “Congratulations, Sis. I’m confident that you and Major will be happier together than you can even imagine.”

“I know we will be.”

“I’ll walk you out.”

Halfway down the stairs, he paused. “What about a honeymoon? Don’t tell me you’re going to just drop everything and take a two-week vacation that hasn’t been on the schedule for the past six months.”

“No. Since the events next week can be handled by our assistants, we’re leaving next Wednesday for a long weekend in Colorado. Amazing how this managed to coincide with the Aspen Food and Wine Classic that Major’s always wanted to go to, huh?” But from the smile on her face, he could tell she didn’t begrudge indulging Major’s wishes in the least.

Heading back to his office after seeing his sister and brother-in-law off—would he ever get used to that?—Forbes feigned harriedness to keep anyone from trying to stop him for a chat.

“Samantha, no calls for the next half hour, please,” he told his secretary on his way past her desk.

“Yes, Mr. Guidry.”

He leaned against his door after closing it. His office, with its walls of built-in, dark wood cabinets and bookcases, seemed to press in around him.

What he’d told Meredith was true; he was absolutely certain that she and Major would have a happy marriage. Both of them were easygoing, almost too eager to give up what they wanted to make someone else happy. Forbes had learned a long time ago that he didn’t have the right personality to get married. Every girl he’d dated in high school or college had wanted to go out with him because of his looks. And every one of them had eventually broken up with him for one of two reasons: Either she thought he was selfish and didn’t pay enough attention to her, or she thought he was too controlling and tried to smother her.

He’d completely given up on dating after his ten-year high school class reunion, at which he’d overheard two of his ex-girlfriends having a laugh about how it was no surprise to them that he wasn’t married yet.

He crossed to the window behind his desk and leaned against the frame, staring down at the visitor parking lot. His twenty-year reunion was coming up in the fall. And while he’d love to find some ravishing beauty to take to it to shut up all those exes, he didn’t want the hassle of expectations that came from taking someone out on a date.

When the thirty minutes he’d given himself to brood expired, he opened the office door and asked Samantha to come in to review his schedule for the remainder of the day.

He made several notes in his PDA while she reviewed the afternoon’s appointments and meetings. When she finished and closed her planner, she hesitated, biting her lips.

“What is it?” He leaned back in his chair, curious. She’d never acted in the least intimidated or scared of him before. She’d worked for him a little less than a year, but she was the first secretary he’d had who didn’t seem to mind a boss others had called a micromanager—had even stood up to him a time or two.

“Someone from Bonneterre Lifestyles called a little while ago. It seems you didn’t RSVP for the dinner tonight.”

Forbes groaned. Ever since he’d assisted in partner Tess Folse’s run for city council five years ago—during which he’d given many speeches, appeared on all the local channels’ news broadcasts, and had his photo in the paper multiple times—he’d been a fixture on the magazine’s beefcake list, having garnered enough votes to win and get his face on the front cover twice.

“I suppose it’s black tie?”

Samantha nodded. “That’s what the gal said.”

“Seven o’clock?”

“They offered a car—a limo—for you, if you want.”

He pressed his thumb and forefinger to the bridge of his nose. The three other partners—all women—were thrilled every year when he told them of his inclusion on the list. The articles enumerating his accomplishments were good exposure for the firm, they’d say. Up until now, he’d found some excuse or another to avoid the dinner. This year, Tess, Sandra, and Esther had strongly suggested he make an appearance at the magazine’s big publicity event at which the magazine’s cover would be revealed and the top five bachelors named and recognized with awards.

He glanced over Samantha’s head at the three plaques and two glass trophies on a display shelf. Maybe they needed to give him a new award—Bonneterre’s Most Perpetual Bachelor. He hoped this year he wasn’t again the oldest man on the list.

“Call them back and tell them I’d be delighted to attend, but I’ll drive myself.”

“Will do, boss.” Samantha scooped up her planner and the folders Forbes had given her to refile, and crossed to the door. “And Mr. Guidry?”

“Yes, Samantha?”

“Do try to have fun tonight, okay?”

“Uh-huh. As fun as jumping into a pool full of thumbtacks.”

Samantha’s laughter followed her out of the room.

His gaze flickered back to the emblems of his perpetual singleness. He’d heard the magazine always invited the year’s Most Eligible Bachelorettes to the dinner—possibly hoping to set up a relationship and eventual wedding they could report in their pages. Maybe he could find someone there to take to the reunion—so long as she understood there were no strings attached.

[insert line space]

Alaine Delacroix scrubbed off her on-air makeup. “Matt, have you seen Pricilla since I went off air? I need to talk to her about the event tonight.”

The intern frowned. “I thought you were a guest at the thing, not covering it.”

“Who else is going to cover something like that other than me? I’m the only reporter at this station who covers the social scene.” Not that she wanted to anymore. But until the news director actually looked at the hard-news pieces she’d been doing on her own time, she’d be stuck covering the fluff stories as she had for the past decade of her life.

“If I see her, I’ll tell her you need to talk to her.” The college student waved and left the small prep room.

Alaine turned to check her appearance in the large mirror to make sure she didn’t have mascara smeared down her cheeks. She made the inspection as quick as possible, hating to see her own reflection with no makeup. Even with her shoulder-length black hair still styled from her noon broadcast, with no makeup on, all she saw in the mirror were flaws—dark circles under her eyes, freckles scattered across her nose and cheeks, and the bumps on her forehead that never seemed to go away.

She applied concealer under her eyes, powder all over her face, and a touch of eye makeup, blush, and lip gloss before returning to her desk in the newsroom. Once upon a time, Alaine Delacroix would have thought nothing of walking around with no makeup on. But that had been a very long time ago; she’d been a different person then.

An envelope with the station’s logo and return address in the top left corner sat on her chair when she got back to her cubicle, bearing her name in handwriting she didn’t recognize. She opened it—and smiled. She’d hoped the marketing director would be able to come through for her.

She picked up her phone and dialed a number from memory.

“Boudreaux-Guidry Enterprises, Events and Facilities, this is Meredith.”

“Hey, girl. It’s Alaine.”

“Oh—hi.” Meredith sounded funny. “What’s up?”

Alaine laughed. “I can’t believe you’re going to pretend you don’t know why I’m calling you.”

“You—how did you find out?”

All traces of amusement evaporated, her reporter’s instincts kicking in. Meredith sounded like someone who had a secret. “You know a journalist can’t reveal her sources. So? Spill it. I want details.”

“I haven’t told most of my family yet. If I give you details, you have to promise you won’t say anything to anyone until after Sunday. We’re telling the family at dinner after church.”

“Strictly off the record.” Alaine picked up a pen and steno pad, but forced herself to put them down again and rotate in her chair so that her back was to the desk.

“We had the chaplain at Beausoleil Pointe Center marry us yesterday afternoon. We surprised our parents.”

All the air in Alaine’s lungs froze solid. Meredith Guidry and Major O’Hara had eloped? “But I thought you were having your cousin Anne plan a big wedding for you. I was hoping to cover it, since Major has become quite the celebrity, what with his cooking segments on my show.”

“We decided we were just too busy to try to plan a big wedding. And we’ve already wasted eight years. Why put it off any longer?”

A flash-fire of jealousy forced the air out of Alaine’s lungs. Meredith had been one of her few friends who was still unmarried—and the only true friend Alaine had had in years. She hated being single; even more than becoming a serious journalist, getting married was the one thing she wanted most in life. Yet at thirty-two years old, she was starting to worry that the chances of either dream coming true were not just slipping, but sprinting, away.

Alaine had to swallow past the huge lump in her throat to make her voice work. “Congratulations, Mere. I’m really happy for you.” She glanced down at the envelope crumpled in her fist. “Oh, I got the passes for the Art without Limits exhibit preview and fundraiser at the Beausoleil Fine Arts Center, if you’re still interested in going.”

“Of course I am. And since Major’s catering it, I won’t have to feel guilty about going off and leaving him home alone. Thanks again for thinking of me.”

“I don’t know anyone else who likes art, and I hate going to those things by myself.” She twisted the spiral cord around her finger tightly, trying to see if the slight pain would help squeeze out her envy.

“Same here—oh, my other line just lit up. I’ll talk to you later.”

“Okay. Bye.” Alaine turned around to hang up the receiver, then put her head down on her folded arms atop the desk. God, why is everyone I know married or engaged? Am I the last old maid left in Bonneterre?

She knew the answer to that, of course. Twenty-four other “eligible bachelorettes” would be at the Bonneterre Lifestyles dinner along with her, if they all showed up. And who wouldn’t, when they’d have VIP access to the handsomest, wealthiest, highest-profile single men in town for the evening?

Mother’s constant harping on her to get married—and soon—was starting to make Alaine feel like something was wrong with her for still being single at her age. The facts that Joe and his wife couldn’t have kids and that Tony, at age twenty-six, wasn’t anywhere near ready to settle down put all the pressure of producing grandchildren anytime soon on Alaine. And she wasn’t even sure she wanted kids.

She sat up and tried to run her fingers through her hair—before remembering it was still shellacked with hair spray.

Maybe tonight she’d give those bachelors more than just a professional glance. Maybe it was time to get a little arm candy to show her parents—and anyone else who might be looking—that she was at least trying. And she never knew: Mr. Right could be Bachelor Number One, Two, or Twenty-Five.


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Here Burns My Candle

WaterBrook Press (March 16, 2010)


Liz Curtis Higgs


In her best-selling series of Bad Girls of the Bible books, workbooks, and videos, Liz Curtis Higgs breathes new life into ancient tales about the most infamous—and intriguing—women in scriptural history, from Jezebel to Mary Magdalene. Biblically sound and cutting-edge fresh, these popular titles have helped more than one million women around the world experience God's grace anew. Her best-selling historical novels, which transport the stories of Rebecca, Leah, Rachel, and Dinah to eighteenth-century Scotland, have also helped her readers view these familiar characters in a new light. And her nonfiction book, Embrace Grace, winner of a 2007 Retailers Choice Award, presents her message of hope in an engaging and personal way, speaking directly to the hearts of her readers.

A veteran speaker, Liz has presented more than 1,600 encouraging programs for audiences in all 50 states and 10 foreign countries: South Africa, Indonesia, Germany, France, England, Canada, Ecuador, Scotland, Portugal, and New Zealand. In 1995, she received the Council of Peers Award for Excellence from the National Speakers Association, becoming one of only 32 women in the world named to their CPAE-Speaker Hall of Fame.

Feature articles about Liz have appeared in more than 250 major newspapers and magazines across the country, as well as online with Salon.com, Beliefnet.com and Spirituality.com. She has also been interviewed on more than 600 radio and television stations, including guest appearances on PBS, A&E, MSNBC, NPR, TBN with Kirk Cameron, CBC Canada, BBC Radio Scotland, Rhema Broadcasting New Zealand, Radio Pulpit South Africa, LifeToday with James Robison, Focus on the Family, Janet Parshall's America, 100 Huntley Street and Midday Connection.

Liz is the author of twenty-six books, with more than three million copies in print.

Her fiction includes two contemporary novels, one novella, and four historical novels. And she has written five books for young children.


A mother who cannot face her future.

A daughter who cannot escape her past.

Lady Elisabeth Kerr is a keeper of secrets. A Highlander by birth and a Lowlander by marriage, she honors the auld ways, even as doubts and fears stir deep within her.

Her husband, Lord Donald, has secrets of his own, well hidden from the household, yet whispered among the town gossips.

His mother, the dowager Lady Marjory, hides gold beneath her floor and guilt inside her heart. Though her two abiding passions are maintaining her place in society and coddling her grown sons, Marjory’s many regrets, buried in Greyfriars Churchyard, continue to plague her.

One by one the Kerr family secrets begin to surface, even as bonny Prince Charlie and his rebel army ride into Edinburgh in September 1745, intent on capturing the crown.

A timeless story of love and betrayal, loss and redemption, flickering against the vivid backdrop of eighteenth-century Scotland, Here Burns My Candle illumines the dark side of human nature, even as hope, the brightest of tapers, lights the way home.

Watch the book video:

If you would like to read the first chapter of Here Burns My Candle, go HERE.

REVIEW A Distant Melody

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Book Description: Will a chance meeting in a time of war change her life forever?

Never pretty enough to please her gorgeous mother, Allie will do anything to gain her approval--even marry a man she doesn't love. While Allie has nearly resigned herself to that fate, Lt. Walter Novak--fearless in the cockpit but hopeless with women--takes his last furlough at home in California before being shipped overseas.

Walt and Allie meet and begin a correspondence that will change their lives. As letters fly between Walt's muddy bomber base in England and Allie's mansion in an orange grove, their friendship binds them together. But can they untangle the secrets, commitments, and expectations that keep them apart?

Book 1 in the Wings of Glory series, A Distant Melody is an exciting and tender story of love, courage, and sacrifice during World War II.

My Review: Seems like this is the year for WWII novels. My fave war era is the Civil War . . . I like the big hoop skirts, plantations, and southern men. Yet the moment I started this book I was hooked. Sarah wrote such believable characters, with a strong storyline! I loved the letter writing! It created such suspense and romance throughout the entire book. I highly recommend this book if your a historical romance fan. I give it a lighthouse and shine a light on it for pointing a path to God.

Win Slip Of The Knife

Monday, March 15, 2010

Book Description: Slip of the Knife By Denise Mina
Paddy Meehan is no stranger to murder--as a reporter she lives at crime scenes--but nothing has prepared her for this visit from the police. Her former boyfriend and fellow journalist Terry Patterson has been found hooded and shot through the head. Paddy knows she will be of little help--she had not seen Terry in more than six months. So she is bewildered to learn that in his will he has left her his house and several suitcases full of notes. Drawn into a maze of secrets and lies, Paddy begins making connections to Terry's murder that no one else has seen, and soon finds herself trapped in the most important--and dangerous--story of her career.

Thanks to Hachette Publishing I have this great book to offer up as a giveaway. I have 3 copies to giveaway. The rules are the same. Here they are again. And remember NO P.O. boxes and this is open to U.S. and Canada Residents. To enter you must leave your email address. If you do not your entry will be deleted. To receive extra entries you can do the following . . . 1. if you are already follower of this blog say so in your original comment; DO NOT LEAVE AN ADDITONAL COMMENT. 2. If you are a NEW follower leave an additional comment. 3. Tweet about this on twitter, and leave an additional comment with the link. 4. Blog about this giveaway and leave the link. This will start today, Monday, March 15th and end on Friday, March 26th. On the 26th I will use a randomizer to draw the winners. The winners will have 48 hrs to email me their mailing information, if I don't receive it within the 48 hrs I will draw another winner(s). GOOD LUCK!!!!!

Win This One Is Mine

Book Description: Violet Parry is living the quintessential life of luxury in the Hollywood Hills with David, her rock-and-roll manager husband, and her darling toddler, Dot. She has the perfect life--except that she's deeply unhappy. David expects the world of Violet but gives little of himself in return. When she meets Teddy, a roguish small-time bass player, Violet comes alive, and soon she's risking everything for the chance to find herself again. Also in the picture are David's hilariously high-strung sister, Sally, on the prowl for a successful husband, and Jeremy, the ESPN sportscaster savant who falls into her trap.

Thanks to Hachette Publishing I have this great book to offer up as a giveaway. I have 3 copies to giveaway. The rules are the same. Here they are again. And remember NO P.O. boxes and this is open to U.S. and Canada Residents. To enter you must leave your email address. If you do not your entry will be deleted. To receive extra entries you can do the following . . . 1. if you are already follower of this blog say so in your original comment; DO NOT LEAVE AN ADDITONAL COMMENT. 2. If you are a NEW follower leave an additional comment. 3. Tweet about this on twitter, and leave an additional comment with the link. 4. Blog about this giveaway and leave the link. This will start today, Monday, March 15th and end on Thursday, March 25th. I will use a randomizer to draw the winners and the winners will have 48 hours to give me their mailing information if I do not receive it in that time frame I will draw other winners. GOOD LUCK!


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Dead Reckoning

Abingdon Press (March 1, 2010)


Ronie Kendig


Ronie has been married since 1990 to a man who can easily be defined in classic terms as a hero. She has four beautiful children. Her eldest daughter is 16 this year, her second daughter will be 13, and her twin boys are 10. After having four children, she finally finished her degree in December 2006. She now has a B.S. in Psychology through Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. Getting her degree is a huge triumph for both her and her family--they survived!

This degree has also given her a fabulous perspective on her characters

and how to not only make them deeper, stronger, but to make them realistic and know how they'll respond to each situation. Her debut novel, Dead Reckoning released March 2010 from Abingdon Press. And her Discarded Heroes series begins in July from Barbour with the first book entitled Nightshade.


Underwater archeologist Shiloh Blake is consumed with passion for the water and inflamed at the injustices of life. When her first large-scale dig traps her in the middle of an international nuclear arms clash, she flees for her life.

When she spots a man trailing her, the questions are, Who is he? And how is he always one step ahead? Is the man trailing her an enemy or a protector sent by her CIA father?

Reece Jaxon is a former Navy SEAL and now serves his country as a spy. His life is entangled by the beguiling Shiloh Blake as he hunts down the sources to a nuclear dead drop in the Arabian Sea near Mumbai, India. The only way to end this nightmare and prevent a nuclear meltdown is to join forces with Reece. Will Shiloh violate her vow to never become involved in her father's web of intrigue and mystery? Will she reconcile with her past and with him? Will she allow God to help her throught this ordeal of danger, mistrust and uncertainty?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Dead Reckoning, go HERE.

My New Favorite Song . . . Thanks John McKay

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Friday, March 12, 2010

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card author is:

and the book:

It's in my Blood

SC Creations (December 1, 2009)

***Special thanks to Shawneda Marks for sending me a review copy.***


Shawneda Marks is known as the activist author. She loves to sound the trumpet about important issues. In addition to being a tree hugger and running her charitable organization she loves to weave stories. Her heart and passion surround helping people be wellness walkers. Marks novels address issues in the faith based community while bringing laughter, conversation, revelation and hope. The nonfiction books are written at this time explicitly for women to be encouraged, empowered, beautiful from the inside out and most important whole!

Visit the author's website.

Product Details:

List Price: $14.99
Paperback: 274 pages
Publisher: SC Creations (December 1, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0615304664
ISBN-13: 978-0615304663



Rosalyn wanted to give a courtesy wave to the driver of the minivan she cut off switching from the far left to the far right lane on Houston’s interstate ten but she had to focus. Several drivers blasted their horns as she pushed all six hundred ninety horses to their maximum. She glanced into her rearview mirror and swore as the black SUV on her tail gunned and pulled within inches of her bumper. Her cell phone rang. Rajj’s name and number lit up the screen. He ignored her calls and office visits for weeks, told her he didn’t want anything else to do with her. Now he chased her down the interstate like a madman. Confusion, fear and hope knotted her stomach. She pressed talk.

“Rajj, please slow down and think about what you’re doing!” Rosalyn jumped into the left lane again and missed an eighteen wheeler by centimeters.

“Why! You didn’t think about what you did. A baby Rosalyn…” Rajj screamed into the phone. “You tricked me into getting you pregnant.”

Rosalyn revved her engine and shot forward past two motorists. Sweat dripped from her nose and down her back. She sighed when the SUV disappeared from her rearview mirror. Tricked seemed such an ugly word. Their time together created life. He was the first man she loved since college, why didn’t he see that? He felt something for her.

“Then you told Toney. My wife—.”

“Fiancé…excuse me—ex fiancé who I didn’t tell anything.” Rosalyn sped up as Rajj cut off two cars and squeezed in behind her again. When his engagement ended she offered her love, a family and happily ever after to him. He offered her the other side of his front door, and a rejection that ripped her soul apart at the core.

Rosalyn’s car lurched forward as he bumped her from behind and called her every derogatory word for female she knew and a few she didn’t. Rosalyn almost pressed the gas pedal through the floor and pulled the steering wheel left before changing her mind and sliding into a small opening in the right lane. Sweat soaked through her tight red sweater and camisole.

Rajj’s SUV pulled into the left lane and sped ahead of her. An eighteen-wheeler skimmed the back of the SUV. Time slowed as Rajj’s vehicle turned then flipped. A scream ripped from her throat as his body burst through the front window into the concrete median. His SUV hit the wall and slid several hundred feet scraping parts of the asphalt back. She turned on her hazard lights. Motorists slowed allowing her to pull off of the interstate onto the shoulder behind the path his SUV left on the interstate.

Rosalyn’s trembling hands refused to allow her fingers to press the small numbered buttons as sobs began to well up in her throat. She flung the cell phone into the passenger seat. The same way Rajj flung her heart aside when his relationship and their tryst as he called it ended. Her heart broke again. Snapshots of their nights together flashed in her mind as she wiped at the tears spilling from her eyes. Rajj the man she lived to love for months lay twisted in a bloody heap next to the median. Cars moved to the right lanes as drivers slowed to look at the body and wreckage of the crumpled luxury vehicle.

The pulse in her ears grew deafening as she pushed her car door open. Every synapse of her brain instructed her to run to Rajj. Rosalyn wrapped her hands around her midsection and shivered as traffic crawled by. She took a step towards his limp body. Her legs gave out as her body crashed down to the gravel beneath her. Her mind went blank with the impact of her head against the ground.

Rosalyn squinted at the outline of a man of the man hovering over her. Her hand flew to her forehead to stop the pounding behind her eyes.

“Ma’am you okay?” the trooper took her by the elbow and guided her to a sitting position. He looked at the puddle of blood left by Rajj’s -body. “Did you see what happened?

Nodding she forced herself to make intelligible words between tears as she told the officer of their cat and mouse chase all over the interstate. Sobs overtook her as she described the moments that passed like years as Rajj flew through his windshield into the wall. Rosalyn wiped her nose with her left arm. She winced and grabbed the back of her head as a pain shot through her shoulder and neck.

“You need to have yourself looked at let me call another ambulance.” He reached for his shoulder.

“I’m not leaving my car.” Rosalyn grabbed him with her right hand. “I can drive myself to the hospital, that’s not necessary.”

“Is there someone you can call to pick it up and meet you there?” His eyes wandered to the median where emergency workers attempted to secure Rajj on a stretcher.

A breath Rosalyn didn’t know she held eased from her lips as she nodded. “Yes.”

“Call them now we’ll finish talking to you at the hospital.” The officer stopped traffic as he crossed back over toward the SUV.

A cool wind whipped through Rosalyn as she made her way back to the driver seat. She retrieved the cell phone from her passenger seat and called her best friend. The state trooper climbed into his cruiser and the siren blasted bringing traffic to a standstill. Rajj’s hand fell limp from the gurney as they eased him into the small space under the glaring bright light on the back of the ambulance. She ignored the snot and tears covering her face and climbed into the back of the ambulance.


Rosalyn sat on the bed behind the half opened curtain with her left arm in a temporary sling. She exhaled as a group of people led Rajj’s ex-fiancé into the waiting area. Her eyes closed as she leaned her head on the wall. The curtain snatched open and closed, Rosalyn popped up.

“Rosy. Oh my goodness! Are you alright? I almost got a ticket trying to get here. I knew something was wrong when I didn’t see you at the rink. You haven’t missed a Friday at Golden Skate since I moved here.”

“Slight concussion, something called a seatbelt injury. The baby is fine though. I think.” Rosalyn rested her right hand over her flat stomach.

“It was Rajj, wasn’t it? Love of your life, the guy you came over my house in hysterics over a few days ago. ” Becca tried to smooth the unruly curls crowning her face as she sat next to Rosalyn. “Why was he trying to kill you?”

“Becca, I wanted to tell you. I didn’t plan on falling in love with someone else’s man. He broke all my rules…the way he kissed me. What am I supposed to do now? How am I gonna raise a baby by myself? He seemed so into me, all those nights we spent together…things were more than physical. He never said it but he loved me. It might not seem to make sense but I know he did. Then when she dumped him… I thought I was the one he wanted to be with. He just wanted what they all want. Why did I think he cared? About me. ” Rosalyn tried to stand up.

“What are you doing? You better wait for the doctor Rosy.” Becca placed a firm but gentle hand on Rosalyn’s right arm. She pulled the curtain closed as another group of people glanced in while walking by. “Bump him, I care about you. Now you have to start taking better care of yourself. ”

“Becca, no! We have a baby on the way. He is everything to me…I love him. It started out like all the others but something changed. We talked about everything, he looked at me and I felt alive. I felt desirable as a person. I thought he loved me. I thought he could help me. Whose gonna help me?” Rosalyn looked down then smiled at the concern she recognized in her alum’s eyes.

“I’m here for you but I’m not enough? You have family back in Chicago you can depend on Rosalyn. Call your parents, take some time off, and talk this over with them.” Becca rubbed Rosalyn’s right arm.

Rosalyn dropped her head back. The thought of going back to Chicago made her shudder. The events of the night replayed in her mind. Earlier in the evening before the chase she imagined a happy life with Rajj and their baby. After a few more days the realization he loved her and wanted their baby would drive him to her. She wiped the tears from her cheeks and eyes. Instead his anger drove him into a wall and out of her life for good. Dead men didn’t change their minds, or fall in love. All hope of their getting together died with Rajj in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Her fast life in Houston came to a screeching halt in one night. Things were getting bad, bad enough for her to contemplate going home to Chicago.

First Trimester

Chapter One

Rosalyn filled her mouth with water and gulped down a fist full of pills. She fidgeted with the radio buttons on the arm of her seat. Bong. The “fasten your seatbelt” light turned on next to the air globe and attendant call button above her.

“Flight 118 to Chicago is set to land as scheduled at 10:25A.M. Flight attendants please complete landing cross check.” The scratchy voice interrupted the music piping through her earphones provided by the airline.

Her watch read 10:05A.M. She wanted to be happy to have somewhere to go, but couldn’t push past the anger. If Rajj just … it didn’t matter. Rosalyn decided to focus on staying healthy.

She needed these next few weeks to talk to her father. A thought popped in her mind to visit her favorite spa, maybe even invite her mother. Rosalyn couldn’t remember the last time they spent an enjoyable day together. A pamper us day might prove to be a starting point for them to bond, rebuild a relationship. Rosalyn admitted to herself how much she still wanted a relationship with Naomi to happen. Did she want it bad enough to invite her to the spa? Maybe not, she wanted to leave the spa feeling refreshed. Dad would help her get her

mind right. So much to talk about, so many decisions, six weeks would be over… quick. Rosalyn looked out of the window onto the snow covered roofs as the plane descended and readied to taxi into Midway International. This city held onto the cold like a security blanket. Six weeks, then back to Houston and on with her life.

Rosalyn shook her head as the rooftops grew larger. What kind of life would she have with a baby? What kind of life for a baby with her? What did she do to deserve this mess?

Rosalyn followed the second hand on her watch.10:15 A.M. She imagined Saint Naomi’s reaction to the news, unwed, pregnant and HIV positive. Her parents sounded happy for her to come home when she spoke to them last night on the phone. How happy when they found out her condition?

Rosalyn inhaled the stale recycled air and sighed. Naomi’s disapproving lecture and drama were certain. Her Dad crossed her mind, and that look. The one he perfected her last three years in high school, sheer disappointment. Not the return home she planned. Well not all of it.

Whatever happened to mercy? All the grace and stuff they preached and shouted about in church during her childhood. Rosalyn looked at her watch. 10:20 AM.


Her father sat in the living room as Rosalyn entered her childhood home. Naomi walked over and gave her father a gentle kiss on the lips. Rosalyn smiled and ran to him. He stood up and pulled her into a bear hug. Her eyes glazed over as she went back to a better time in her life. She inhaled his scent not wanting the moment to end but determined to get the worst part of her trip over she pulled out of his embrace.

Naomi perched on the far end of the sofa. Rosalyn plopped down in the middle and pulled her father down next to her. She looked at Naomi then back at her father. Her nerves calmed a bit as he gave her one of his “its okay honey” smiles. She dragged in a deep breath and took one of both her parents’ hands.

“I didn’t know what to do, and Becca suggested I use my rollover paid time off from last year to come home. With everything goin on…”

“What exactly is going on, Rosalyn? You turn down every invitation to come home since you graduated college then call and say you may need to be here for a few weeks.” Naomi said.

“Well I heard some rumors about layoffs, involuntary transfers—”

“So what, you’ve been there since you graduated college. Let your Dad tell it, you run the place.” Naomi rolled her eyes.

“Naomi, please. Let her finish...go ahead, sweetie” Her father nodded.

“There is no easy way,” Rosalyn filled her lungs with air then pushed it out, “Daddy, I’m almost three months pregnant and--,”

“Oh my goodness! Rosalyn,” Naomi took her hand from her daughter’s and covered her mouth.

“Mimi, calm down. And what Rosalyn? ” He looked at Naomi then back into Rosalyn’s tear filled eyes. “We won’t interrupt you again.”

“I’m…I’m...” Rosalyn cleared her throat and tried to ignore Naomi who covered her entire face with both of her hands, “not with the father anymore.”

Her father scrunched his eyebrows together and nodded his head in slow motion. Rosalyn studied the new painting on the wall. She leaned forward between her parents with her head down. Within seconds her face covered in tears. Her father pulled out his handkerchief and wiped the tears from her face. Shamed filled every inch of her being. Her plan to tell them everything fading with each gentle stroke, if her pregnancy brought this response her HIV positive status could kill them.

Rosalyn felt Naomi reposition herself on the couch. Naomi’s hand gripped Rosalyn’s trembling shoulder. She almost drowned in her father’s eyes bright with unshed tears. Next to her, Naomi’s lips moved and eyes closed.

“Daddy I’m sorry. Please forgive me. I’m so sorry.” Rosalyn sobbed and choked back her desire to bury her head into her father’s chest.

“Why are you sorry? I love you, Rosy, and I’ll love my grandchild.” Her father kissed her hair and rocked her while she cried. “Nothing could ever change that.”

Rosalyn took some comfort in his words. Peace tried to engulf her. She scooted away from Naomi’s hand fighting the urge to accept the warmth and comfort it offered. The desire to love and be loved overpowered by fear of another betrayal continued to wage war deep inside her. She felt Naomi kneel in front of the couch. She didn’t care how hard Naomi prayed, there weren’t enough prayers on earth to make her forget. Forgiveness would be a miracle.

My Review: Rosy's mother, Naomi drove me insane! She is so far from what a Mom should be, keeping secrets, and throwing little digs at her. Shawneda does a wonderful job writing this book, showing the conflict between the Naomi and Rosy. The frustration Rosy's, father, John has in dealing with these two women in his life who do not get along. While Naomi drove me insane, and insane to the point that I wanted to strangle her, I couldn't stop reading this book! It was so good! I highly recommend this book!


Thursday, March 11, 2010

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Once in a Blue Moon

B&H Books (March 1, 2010)


Leanna Ellis


Leanna's sister recommended that she write, since she ‘wrote in her journal all the time.’ The idea took root and began to grow. So after five years of teaching, she quit and started writing, with no clue about the book business. Ignorance is bliss. If she’d known the odds against her, she might not have ever started writing.

For about three years, she wrote with a collaborator, but because she had so many ideas she began to write more stories on her own. She suffered numerous rejections. Deservedly so. But she was growing as a writer and learning. She went to as many conferences as she could manage. During that time, she met her future husband, fell in love and became engaged. She also began to final in contests and then actually began to win! The contests helped her get noticed by editors and agents. In March, the year Braveheart won the Best Picture Oscar, Victor/Victoria opened on Broadway, she sold her first book. It was her Cinderella year. She sold her book, got married and won RWA’s Golden Heart Award in Hawaii.

She wrote six books between her first baby’s birth and when the second baby turned one. Then she hit a wall. Not literally. But creatively. It’s not that she didn’t have any ideas, but her ideas didn’t fit the romance market. These new characters, random and weird as they were, began to take over the part of her brain that wasn’t domesticated. These stories were about all types of women, and so she began to let her writing grow in new and different ways.

Leanna Ellis sold more than 1.3 million romantic novels writing as Leanna Wilson, winning a Readers’ Choice award and the Romance Writers of America Golden Heart award for her work. Elvis Takes a Back Seat is the first book published under her married name, marking a new creative direction in her writing. Like Francine Rivers before her, Leanna has left behind a successful career as an author of secular romances to write novels of faith that glorify God. A former schoolteacher, Leanna is now a homeschool mom and lives with her husband and children in Keller, Texas.


Bryn Seymour was nine years old when her mother died under mysterious circumstances on the same day Apollo 11 made its historic lunar landing. Forty years later—divorced, working as an obituary writer, and duly cynical—she meets Howard, a conspiracy theorist who knew her mom and believes a small Texas town may hold clues to what really fueled her demise. Seeking closure, Bryn goes along for this men-in-black ride. But upon meeting Howard’s son Sam, an outspoken Christian, she can’t decide whose beliefs are more pie-in-the-sky.

The gravity of life has pulled Bryn down for decades. But a perfect love could be her first step to soaring. It only happens once in a blue moon.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Once in a Blue Moon, go HERE

Watch the book trailer:

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