Paige Torn

Thursday, June 27, 2013

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Paige Torn
Think (May 1, 2013)
by
Erynn Mangum


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:





A few things about her: So, if we were having this conversation in person, we would probably be hanging out at Starbucks or one of the cute coffeehouses in town. I’m nuts about all things coffee, I’m crazy about all things pink and girly, and I love, love, love the Food Network! I’m married to my best friend and the most amazing guy ever, Jon. He is amiable toward coffee, does not like anything pink or girly and tolerates the Food Network. So, we make a good match! In July 2010, we became parents to one of the funniest, cutest, sweetest little guys in the whole world (and nope, we aren’t biased at all!), our Nater-Tot, who is legally known as Nathan. Most days, I’m cleaning up messes, making goofy faces, trying to fit some writing in, and just LOVING the life that God has given me!



ABOUT THE BOOK




Everyone knows they can count on Paige Alder. But between volunteering at church, putting in overtime at work, and helping her best friend plan an anniversary party, she's lucky to grab a cheese stick for dinner. Paige can't even remember the last time she had a few minutes to relax or dig into God's Word. Then she meets laid-back Tyler, an attractive, Jesus-loving guy. Will he be able to help Paige get her priorities on track?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Paige Torn, go HERE.


Paige is quite the character! She is a lot of fun, and this is a great summer book!

Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


















About the book:

Claudia's life did not start easily. The illegitimate daughter of Julia, reviled and exiled daughter of Caesar Augustus, Claudia spends her childhood in a guarded villa with her mother and grandmother. When Tiberius, who hates Julia, takes the throne, Claudia is wrenched away from her mother to be brought up in the palace in Rome. The young woman is adrift-until she meets Lucius Pontius Pilate and becomes his wife. When Pilate is appointed Prefect of the troublesome territory of Judea, Claudia does what she has always done: she makes the best of it. But unrest is brewing on the outskirts of the Roman Empire, and Claudia will soon find herself and her beloved husband embroiled in controversy and rebellion. Might she find peace and rest in the teaching of the mysterious Jewish Rabbi everyone seems to be talking about?


Recently named “Writer of the Year” by the San Diego Christian Writer’s Guild, Diana Wallis Taylor has been writing since the age of 12 when she sold her first poem to a church newspaper. Her third novel, Mary Magdalene came out May 2012 and she recently completed her fourth novel of Biblical Fiction for Revell, Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate. She won first place in the San Diego Book Awards for her short story, “Phipps and the Jay”; First place in Christian Romance for her book Smoke Before the Wind. First place in Christian Fiction for her manuscript, “House of the Forest”; Second place last year for Martha all in the Reader’s Favorite Book Review and Award Contest. Her collection of poetry, Wings of the Wind came out in 2006. Her writing contributions appear in various compilation books and magazines. Diana wrote the words and melodies to an Easter cantata called “Glorious” recently completed with her fellow collaborator, Carolyn Prentice, who did the orchestration.
Diana lives with her husband Frank in San Diego, California. Between them they have six grown children and ten grandchildren. She enjoys speaking and sharing her heart with women of all ages.

You can read more about her on her website http://dianawallistaylor.com/

My Thoughts:

Biblical fiction is one of my favorite genre's. Diana did a great job bringing Claudia and Pilate to life.
Claudia is mentioned once in the Bible, in Matthew 27:19, While he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent him a message, saying, "Have nothing to do with that righteous Man; for last night I suffered greatly in a dream because of Him."
In this novel, we see Claudia who is taken from her dying mother when she is young to the court of Tiberius, and raised in Rome. She is then wed to Lucius Pontius Pilate. The relationship between Pilate and Claudia is very endearing. They are truly in love and he wants to make her life better than it was before.
It isn't very long during Pilate's governing that he becomes the Prefect of Judea, which is in total unrest, and gets worse with Jesus coming on the scene. Claudia has had dreams about Jesus, before she even gets to Judea. She begins to have questions about the Jewish beliefs, and asks members of her staff who are Jewish. She then meets Jesus face to face and her life was changed. He wasn't made of stone or wood, He was flesh and blood, and her life was forever changed in that moment.
When Jesus is brought to Pilate, and accused Pilate tries four times to not have Him crucified, yet the crowd wouldn't have it and Pilate knew a riot would ensue.
Years after Jesus' death, Pilate feels guilty for not stopping His crucifixion, and Claudia tells him that he was part of the plan, because Jesus came to free us from our sins.

In the author's note, Diana says that there is much speculation about whether Pilate became a believer or not. There is an Orthodox church named after him, so I would like to believe he finally realized who Jesus was and that he was forgiven. How Pilate died is also speculation. Some say he committed suicide, some say he died in exile of natural causes.

I am with Diana, I want to believe that he came to faith.

Pros: Beautiful Biblical scenery all throughout. Bible verses put in at the right places. Seeing a woman who believed in the gods of the Romans come to faith.
Cons: None!

I highly recommend this book! 

*Available June 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group*


Pieces Of The Heart

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Pieces of the Heart
Abingdon Press (June 1, 2013)
by
Bonnie S. Calhoun


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Bonnie S. Calhoun is Owner/Director of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance, owner/publisher of Christian Fiction Online Magazine, Northeast Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), the ACFW ‘2011 Mentor of the Year,” President of (CAN) Christian Authors Network, and Appointment Coordinator for both the Colorado Christian Writers Conference (CCWC) and the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers Conference(GPCWC).

For the last six years she has taught workshops in Facebook, Twitter, Blogging, and creating Social Media promotions at both CCWC, and GPCWC, and in 2011 at the Montrose, Pa Christian Writers Conference. She also taught a Facebook workshop at the 2012 ACFW conference.

Bonnie and her husband live in a log cabin in upstate area of New York with a dog and cat who think she’s wait-staff.

Her sites are: https://www.facebook.com/bonniescalhounsnarkandsuspense
https://www.facebook.com/bscalhoun

ABOUT THE BOOK

Cordelia Grace watched Bernard Howard, the love of her young life, go off to fight for our country in WWII. And she has spent the last three years creating the Pine Cone quilt that will grace their marriage bed when he comes home. Each row of triangles signifies a layer in her life, sets of memories, hopes, dreams, and prayers for her future, enough spoken words to cover them forever. Her image of their “happy-ever-after” grows proportionally as the quilt expands.

But is the man that returns from the war, the same man that she remembered? Are the dark shades of color that she had to use for the outside edges of the beloved quilt prophetic of her life to come? Can love and faith overcome all?

If you would like to read teh first chapter of Pieces of the Heart, go HERE.

My Thoughts: I just received this book, and haven't had a chance to read very much of it. What I have read I like. I think it will be a home run for Bonnie.

Desiree Week 5, Munich, Germany




It opens with snow capped mountains, sledding, fireworks, intimate conversations with Chris, tears, and kissing.

Chris welcomes the guys on a cobblestone road by a statue. He tells them that it is Des’ first time in Europe, and she is excited to experience it with all of them.

Dates:

1 on 1, a group date and a 2 on 1, if they don’t receive a rose on the 2 on 1, they will immediately be going home.

The guys are put up in a sweet, old hotel that is beautiful.

Date card arrived, and Chris gets the first one on one. The date card is in German, and he reads it, very, very, interesting.  They are just going to explore Munich with their trusty phrase book.

Brydon, Military Dude, is still not happy about being there and plans on telling Des that he is going to leave, and he leaves the hotel in search of her.

Chris and Des are being silly and goofy, which is cute to see.
They were dancing and cue in Military Dude who crashes their date. He asks Chris if he can borrow her for just a second and he will return her.
She knew it was coming, she was sad about it; she just wanted to get back to Chris, because she was sad. Chris made sure she knew he is there for the long haul.

The group date card arrives and Kasey gets it.
Juan Pablo
James
Kasey
Zak - Naked Texas Dude
Drew – Jake’s mini-me
Mikey – meathead

Oh boy! That means Michael and Ben, the most hated have the 2 on 1 date. Look out for fireworks!
They haven’t even left and Michael is talking smack about how he is going to get rid of Ben.

Cut back to Des and Chris. They are in a beautiful ballroom. She asks him what he wants, and he lets her know that he is ready for a relationship, for a family.
He has written a poem for her, and he reads it. She is very touched by it especially after the day she has had.  Chris seems to have a way to bring her back to center.
He goes on and on about how you can tell by the way someone kisses you their feelings. E-Gad dude, shut up already! She gave you the rose.

Matt White begins to play and they are dancing. She believes she can trust Chris with her heart.

Group date:

They are going to go play in the snow. James is complaining saying that after a AWESOME one on one, going on a group date is like being with a herd of sheep. Oh and they have something so unique and so special none of them can touch it.
In the gondola Des is in awe of the majestic view of the mountains. There is a yodeler who is funny, Meathead and Kasey try yodeling, they should stick to their day jobs, and Des thinks it is great that the guys are embracing the culture.

Sledding down the huge mountain, is like a car crash waiting to happen. Des bites it but is a great sport about it. They finish up with a snowball fight, Des says it’s like re-living her childhood.

Back at the manor, we have Michael and Ben staring in space, a knock at the door and Chris gets up to answer it.  Michael looks like he is going to tear Ben apart, and they haven’t gone anywhere yet. The date card reads . . . two guys, one rose, one stays, one goes. Michael believes that she put him on this date because she trusts him and he is going to out Ben.

Mountain high, the guys are walking up the mountain, Naked Texas dude is commenting on how they are higher than the clouds. They arrive at a door, and when it is open, it is a ice mansion. Very cool!
Brooks lets her know that he is there for her, and they end up making out.
Des and meathead go out side and he wants to make a family of snowmen. She is totally excited and down for it. Then naked Texas dude comes out and interrupts, by yodeling.
Meathead goes on about being in Germany ten years ago and he made a decision and now here he is again with her. Please can I have a bucket!
James and Des talk and suck face, and he is determined that he is going to get the rose. Surprise, she gives the rose to Brooks, because he makes her happy when she is upset.
Really over James! He is not all that, and a bag of chips.

The two head out for their two on 1, in the limo they look like they are going to a funeral. They are going to someone’s  . . . whose will it be?
Des is hilarious! She knows this will be awkward, but she wants to see how they act in an awkward setting with each other. Looking for a smack down much?
Des has a plan for them to do a polar plunge, and just putting their hands in the water is enough. Ben goes on about how he is a competitor especially when it comes to women. They go put on bathing suits, and come out in robes.
Their going to jump in and swim back out, she starts to run to the lake and stops, they are going to be in the lake just on top of it with a hot tug, that is a hot tub on the water. How fun will this be . . . Des is maneuvering it.
Michael is so flipping annoying! He turns into a criminal lawyer quizzing Ben about his son, and then he goes on about how his dad left him, and he was always waiting at the window to see him come to pick him up. Hey, grow up dude! We all have things in our past that suck, but that doesn’t mean you take it out on someone else.

Back at the hotel, Drew – Jake’s mini me is talking about how James was going on and on in the limo on the way back from the group date that even if he made it to being in the top four he had a good chance of being the next bachelor. Drew goes on to say that he is going to inform Des at the next rose ceremony.

At dinner with Ben, and Michael it’s like a boxing match, who is going to take the next jab.
Michael is going on that Ben isn’t getting along with the guys; Ben says he is there for Des, not to make friends. Michael prattles on and Des cuts in and says that she doesn’t want that to be the main focus.
She asks what are some family traditions or new traditions you want to start. Ben goes first and says making Sunday a family day, going to church together. Michael is on the attack and attacks Ben for not going to church on Easter. Really, are you his mama?
She is so uncomfortable, and she may just let both of them go. I would. This is ridiculous!
Ben leaves and Michael feels he has blown his chance for the rose, Des leaves to go talk to Ben.
He wants her to go back inside and eat. He is upset because his religion and fatherhood is being challenged. He lets her know that he is there for her, he misses his son, and that his picture is up in every room he’s in.
She takes Michael for a little chat and wants to know why he is so passionately against Ben. He apologizes, too late dude! He goes on and on about how the way Ben speaks to other guys in the house. Seriously, are we 5, he goes on to say that he is a know it all, a one upper, makes disconcerting comments. That could be you! You act like a know it all, so does Meathead, Naked Texas dude. He has a bar that is his business; guys usually talk about their business or job.
She is having a hard time deciding who to give the rose to. She said she is giving the rose to the person she can see a potential with.
I wouldn’t choose Michael. While I don’t think Ben is a good fit for her, Michael was cruel and mean. That right there would tell me he needs to go, because if I were to choose him how will he be around my family if he doesn’t like someone, or my friends. Bad choice!
It’s too late to apologize for making her feel uncomfortable, should’ve thought about that before you jumped all over Ben.
Ben’s bags are picked up and the guys are jumping around like a group of teen girls! Grow up!
Ben is waving “hi” to Hollywood in the limo, saying that he’s going to enjoy his last night in Munich, and where can he get drunk.
Chris, host and Des are talking about kissing, and he wants to know who kisses the best, she isn’t going to kiss and tell, he asks if you could kiss one guy, who would it be, and she says Brooks! YAY!!! Because their relationship has gone further; Chris comes back and says that is the deep sentimental kiss, if it is pure physical who would you choose and she says Zak. She is blushing the whole time and Chris is clearly getting a kick out of it.
They talk on about the guys and how Brydon leaves, is she falling in love, and what will she do if one of the guys that are left does what Brydon did.
She acts so confident about the guys she has left, so much so she wants to forgo the cocktail party.
The guys wanted time with her, and Jake’s mini me is not happy with not being able to rat out James. James tells her she looks beautiful. It’s like he is trying to win points.

Roses:
Zak  . . . Naked Texan
Kasey
Juan Pablo
Jake’s mini me
James
Mikey – Meathead goes home!!!!

We now have to listen to Drew go on and on about what a jerk James is.

Previews:
On to Barcelona, lots of kissing, she wants love, the guys go after James, but in the end Des is the one crying.







RANT!!!!!!

Saturday, June 22, 2013



Okay, a friend and fellow blogger posed the question on Facebook, asking how long you've been married and what advice would you give to a couple struggling.

Someone had the nerve to say "If people thought they couldn't get remarried they may work harder on the marriage they are in. Marriage is a serious decision and people rush into it too many times thinking the next one will work."

Oh really! Well . . . divorce isn't easy, it just doesn't happen overnight. And . . . we're suppose to stay in a marriage with someone who refuses to go to counseling, work on the relationship, and/or be faithful.
Don't think that is what God intended. God hates divorce and I am not advocating it at all. However, people who make statements about something they KNOW nothing about should go through it first!
I had no idea what divorce was like until I went through mine. It is painful! God says we are one, and that isn't a LIE, because in a divorce you feel like you are being torn apart from the other person.
Divorce is a train wreck and once the divorce part is over you are left with the pieces, and each person heals differently.
Healing is the key, if you don't take time to heal, get to know who you are without your spouse, you will not be good to anyone, and it all comes down to allowing God to be the lover of your heart first before you can even think about getting re-married, or being serious with someone.

Are there people out there that go from one marriage to the next. Of course there are, don't lump us all into the same category, especially if you haven't walked in our shoes, our shoes are big and hard to fill!


$200 Anthropologie gift card | Tracie Peterson’s “The Quarryman’s Bride” giveaway!

Friday, June 21, 2013


















About The Quarryman's Bride:

The latest book in the Land of Shining Waters series.

Peterson Hits the Bestseller Lists Again and Again!

Emmalyne Knox and Tavin MacLachlan were destined to be together . . . until the tragic deaths of Emmalyne's youngest sisters. Family tradition mandates that the youngest daughter should remain single to care for her parents in their old age, and now that daughter is Emmalyne. Her father unyielding, Emmalyne surrenders to her duty, heartbroken. Tavin leaves town, equally devastated.

Years later, Emmalyne's family moves, and she and Tavin meet again. Their feelings for each other are as strong as ever, but their painful past and Emmalyne's father still stand between them. Soon both families are in the midst of the growing conflict rising between the workers at the granite quarry that Tavin's father owns and operates. When a series of near-fatal accidents occur, Tavin must figure out who is behind the attacks before someone gets killed.

Bound by obligation, yet yearning for a future together, can Emmalyne and Tavin dare to dream that God could heal a decade-long wound and change the hearts of those who would stand in the way of true love?

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/m1ovH

 Meet Tracie:

Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over eighty novels, both historical and contemporary. Her avid research resonates in her stories, as seen in her bestselling Heirs of Montana, and Alaskan Quest series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana. 

Visit Tracie's Web site at www.traciepeterson.com
My Thoughts:
Emmalyne is a good daughter, and since her two sisters were killed in a horrible storm, she is then the youngest daughter and therefore suppose to put off her plans and care for her aging parents.  When Tavin the man she has agreed to marry questions her decision, she says she is to obey, and honor her parents which is what the Bible says. I agree as children we are, not as a grown adult, and a true parent would not expect that. However, Emmalyne moves with her parents back to St. Cloud. The house her father purchased is more like a shack and he expects her to clean it up and ready it for the family. She is doing this out of honor and obedience, yet her father has no kind words for her at all.
It's eleven years later, and Tavin returns to St. Cloud, his dad offers him a job at the quarry, where Emmalyne's father also works.  Emmalyne and Tavin's feelings are as strong as ever, yet her father continues to stand between them. When a number of accidents at the quarry resulting in death, Tavin is on the hunt to find out who is behind them.

Pros: Emmalyne's devotion to her family, regardless of her own desires. Her selflessness to care for her family was great. Not a lot of kids would do that, especially with no appreciation.

Cons: There was a lot of depression. Emmalyne's mother hardly did anything but sit in a rocker, or lay down in her room. Fenella, Tavin's sister is in her room after her husband's death. Besides that Emmalyne's father was just horrible.

Welcome to the campaign page for Tracie Peterson's newest book in the Land of the Shining Water series, The Quarryman's Bride.
Tracie is celebrating with a "True Love" $200 Anthropologie giveaway and a Facebook Author Chat Party.
QuarrymanBride
One winner will receive:


  • A $200 Anthropologie gift card

  • The Quarryman's Bride and The Icecutter's Daughter by Tracie Peterson

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on July 8th. Winner will be announced at the "The Quarryman's Bride" Facebook Author Chat Party on July 9th. Connect with Tracie for an evening of book chat, trivia, laughter, and more! Tracie will also share an exclusive look at the next book in the Land of Shining Water series and give away books and other fun prizes throughout the evening.

So grab your copy of The Quarryman's Bride and join Tracie on the evening of July 9th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)



Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP todayHope to see you on the 9th!

Denise Hunter’s “Barefoot Summer” Summer Sun Giveaway!

Thursday, June 20, 2013



















About Barefoot Summer:

Madison's heart has been closed for years. But one summer can change everything.

In the years since her twin brother's tragic drowning, Madison has struggled with her ability to trust God--or anyone else, for that matter. It was her brother's dream to win the annual River Sail Regatta in their small harbor town of Chapel Springs, Indiana. And Madison's determined to honor his legacy by making his dream her own. Maybe then she can finally find closure.

But learning to sail means learning to swim. And her instructor is Beckett O'Reilly, a man who already has two strikes against him in Madison's eyes. Being on the water terrifies Madison. But Beckett's calming presence and unwavering confidence eases her fear. And as much as she'd like to deny it, the chemistry between them is electrifying.

As her feelings for him grow, a fledgling faith begins to take root in her soul, as well. With Beckett, Madison feels alive for the first time in years--carefree and confident she can win the regatta, maybe even find love.

But Beckett harbors a secret that will test the limits of their love and the depth of Madison's faith. Will their love survive summer's challenge? And will achieving her brother's dream give Madison the peace she desperately seeks?





Meet Denise:
Denise lives in Indiana with her husband Kevin and their three sons. In 1996, Denise began her first book, a Christian romance novel, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she's been writing ever since. Her books often contain a strong romantic element, and her husband Kevin says he provides all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

Learn more about Denise at http://www.denisehunterbooks.com

My Thoughts:

Madison's twin brother Michael is dead, and their twenty-seventh birthday is coming up, Michael's dream was to sail a boat in the regatta and win. Madison who is a vet in town, purchases sailing lessons at the town auction. When the instructor, Evan is called away because his father has gotten sick, he leaves Madison in the hands of Beckett O'Reilly, who is a great sailor and has won the regatta. Little does Evan know that Madison and Beckett are attracted to each other after a shared kiss in high school, however they don't think the other one is interested.

Pros: The sailing element in the book was interesting. Madison has to overcome her fear of the water to be able to sail, and Beckett teaches her to swim, along with sailing. Beckett is also the resident bad boy of the town, and Denise does a great job of showing his spiritual side, along with his manly attractive side.
Madison's inability to function with the death of her twin was real, and believable, as well as her struggle with faith in God. 

Cons:  Some of the book was predictable, as Beckett and Madison prepare for the regatta. 

Over all this is a great summer read and I do recommend it!

Denise Hunter is celebrating her new Chapel Springs Romance series with a Summer Fun Giveaway. The first book, Barefoot Summer, is already a favorite with readers. “Hold-your-breath romance, heartache, and laugh-out-loud moments. It’s more than a good read. It’s a delight.” -- Lisa
BarefootSummer 

Summer: it’s all about sunny skies, star-gazing, swimming, spending time with loved ones, and living as if a small part of the weight of the world has been lifted off your shoulders.


Get ready for some serious summer fun with Denise’s 12-Day Summer Sun giveaway. From June 10-21, keep your computer near as you head to the lake or your friend’s barbecue because Denise will be giving away a summer essential each day!


Lock, Stock, and Over a Barrel

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Lock, Stock and Over a Barrel
B&H Publishing Group (April 30, 2013)
by
Melody Carlson


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:




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.

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.





ABOUT THE BOOK

With high hopes, Dorothy Ballinger lands her dream job at The New York Times. But it's not long until writing about weddings becomes a painful reminder of her own failed romance, and her love of the city slowly sours as well. Is it time to give up the Big Apple for her small hometown of Appleton?

When her eccentric Aunt Dot passes away and leaves a sizeable estate to Dorothy, going back home is an easy choice. What isn’t easy is coming to terms with the downright odd clauses written into the will.

Dorothy only stands to inherit the estate if she agrees to her aunt's very specific posthumous terms -- personal and professional. And if she fails to comply, the sprawling old Victorian house shall be bequeathed to . . . Aunt Dot’s cats.

And if Dorothy thinks that’s odd, wait until she finds out an array of secrets about Aunt Dot's life, and how imperfect circumstances can sometimes lead to God's perfect timing.

If you would liketo read the first chapter of Lock, Stock and Over a Barrel, go HERE.

My copy just arrived, so I will post a full review once I read it.

The Voice Finale and Win

Wednesday, June 19, 2013



Great finalists on The Voice. I liked all of them, yet Michelle Chamuel was my favorite! She could not only sing, she was great on stage and was fun to watch. The Swon brothers were good, as was Danielle Bradbury. Danielle, just came out and sang, she hid behind the mike and never moved on stage. She's 16, a little girl, who has a lot to learn.

Here is Michelle with OneRepublic


Michelle singing on her own . . .


Danielle with Hunter Hays


Danielle singing on her own . . .


Now, I ask you who is more entertaining, and fun?!?!?!? Definitely not Danielle! Yet she won. Another cookie cutter, blonde, Country artist. Needed another one of those, right?! 
Thanks for a great season Michelle! I know this is not the last we will see of you!

 

Fear Has A Name

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Fear Has a Name
David C. Cook (June 1, 2013)
by
Creston Mapes


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Creston has fond memories of his boyhood in Bath, Ohio, where he became enchanted with his future wife, way back in the fourth grade. His father, Bernie, owned and operated The Weathervane Furniture Shop in town. The whole family lived right upstairs in the century-old house known as "The Shop."

Creston studied journalism at Bowling Green State University, then began his writing career. During the past 30 years, he has worked as a reporter, corporate copywriter, creative director, freelance writer, and author.


ABOUT THE BOOK


From popular suspense author Creston Mapes comes another faith-building thriller, a tale that follows journalist Jack Crittendon as he fights to protect his family from a stalker's terrifying schemes, investigates a pastor's mysterious disappearance, and struggles to keep his faith amidst unthinkable fear.

With his family's safety on the line, Crittendon realizes there are secrets behind "Christian" walls--secrets with painful, deadly implications. He must find the faith to trust a God who allows inconceivable trials, and the courage to guard his family, with danger exploding at every turn.

Through it all--the sharp, character-driven writing for which Mapes is known--takes fans and new readers on an edge-of-your-seat journey that explores the harsh, far-reaching consequences of bullying and the Christian response to fear.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Fear Has a Name, go HERE.

Review: My husband grabbed this book the moment it arrived. He said that the author wrote a great story and it had so many red herrings it kept you guessing until the end. He really enjoyed this book!

The Bachelorette - Des Style - Week 4

Tuesday, June 18, 2013



The show starts with a plane taking off, a group of guys walking in the street hyped up because they are going to Atlantic City. We have a pier with a ferris wheel, a water slide, and another amusement park ride.
As the kisses begin, Des says she wants a love that can light the darkness. There’s lots of kissing going on, a beautiful sand castle on the beach, boardwalk games.

Des takes one of the bachelors to where hurricane Sandy ripped New Jersey apart, and he is teary, and feels it has created a bond between them.

The group date is a men’s version of Miss America. This will be completely hilarious.
Once again there is an issue with Ben. Brydon feels it is his place to tell Des about why he’s not liked. Cue, you’re not getting a rose dude!

Des is so cute. She is so hopeful and believes her husband is among these guys.

WOW! The guys’ pad is super sweet!

One on one goes to Brad. Cue in naked Texas Zak, who has to bad mouth anyone who gets a date that isn’t him. The guys watch in complete jealousy from their balcony, how much more Jr. High can you be?! And then naked Zak, is whining about driving himself a little crazy. Then mind your own business, dork! It’s not your date!
Des is having a great time on the rides, and playing games on the boardwalk.  That’s what a good date is all about, huh, having fun!
Brad and Des get to the beach and there is a beautiful, huge sandcastle for them.
At dinner it’s a snooze fest. Brad is hardly speaking, and with all the guys griping about time with her, you’d think he’d talk . . . uh NO . . it’s like pulling teeth to get him to say anything.
They walk up to the top of the lighthouse where they had dinner, and again Des is doing all the talking.
Des, wake up! If there is no conversation then he is probably not worth it! She does and she regretfully tells him that she can’t give him the rose. BUH-BYE Brad!
As he leaves he goes on about opening himself up, coming here for his son, etc. Weepy, weepy, weepy. Seriously, if you opened yourself up, Des wouldn’t have been pulling conversation out of you.


Date card arrives, and Brydon takes it upon himself to collect it and read it.

It’s a group date, and the players are:
Brooks
Brydon –  military dude.
Zak K . . . not naked dude.
Kasey
Drew . . . Jake’s mini-me
Juan Pablo
Zak W . . . naked Texas dude.
Mikey. . .  Mr. I’m the stud – UGH!
Ben . . . the hated dude!
Michael . . . the one who has diabetes.
Chris

James gets the next one on one. Not sure what I think about him.

On to the group date – Mr. America Pageant.

Cue the song . . . There She Goes by Manfred Mann and who has to get to her first, Mr. Complains a lot, AKA naked Texas Zak. I tell you if it were me he’d have lost his gonads by now.  She hugs Brooks next, he always just stays in the background, but is visible when he needs to be. She tells the guys that they are at Boardwalk Hall, which is a historic building, and she’s got something fun planned for them. We’ll see what they think. LOL
Once they get inside Chris tells them that they will be competing in their own Mr. America pageant.
Michael is thrilled, he always dreamed of being Mr. America and now’s his chance.
Miss America is there and she is telling them they will be judged on their interview, talent or lack there of. Chris says he knows they have no idea about pageants so there is help, of course from Miss America, and world famous pageant coach Christopher Dean.  He tells the guys that they are going to go and explore what talent they have. On a table you can see a guitar, a baton, a ribbon for ribbon gymnastics.
Juan Pablo takes the baton while the other guys are looking and he tosses it great!
Naked Texas Zak takes the guitar and believes he will write the best serenade for Des.
Miss America begins talking to the guys about their interview questions; they are surprised at how hard they are. Clearly, if they have watched the Ms. America pageant it’s been for the swimsuit competition.
Christopher Dean tells the guys there is one more category and it is the swimsuit, saying it wouldn’t be a Ms. America pageant without it.
Funnily, the swimsuits are assigned.  Jake’s mini-me, Drew is hoping his name is not on a Speedo. I’m laughing!
Ben gets a Speedo, and says it is way too small.
The guys find out that this will be done in front of a live audience.

Interview questions:
Kasey – is asked are you a giver or a taker in a relationship?  He says he is a giver, a romantic guy, and so he likes to give, and he thinks if both people give it works. Huge round of applause.
Naked Texas Zak – is asked if he would be water or fire, which would you be and why? I want to throw up at his answer. He says fire, he says this knowing that whoever you are with it is your responsibility to fuel her fire. Seriously dude, did you get that out of Relationships for Dummies, because I know you didn’t come up with it.
Brooks – is asked by Des, if you were an animal in the wild what would you be and why? With no thinking he says a lion, king of the jungle.
Chris – is asked what relationship skills do you feel you need to improve on? I’d say communication, because he was fumbling all over the place.
Juan Pablo – is asked, explain your ideal woman? HELLO???? Daughter. You have a kid. Not exactly the way you let someone know you have a kid.
Mikey – is asked what is something that most women don’t understand about men and why not? He says most women see men as their bodies, as meatheads  . . . really dude! He goes on to say that women don’t see their insides that they cry inside, that they like long walks on the beach. As he goes on with emotional prattle, the guys are cracking up backstage.
Talent:
Kasey – Kasey tells some crazy story about nailing staples to his shoes and going outside as a kid to tap . . . then he tap dances. It was ridiculous.
Mikey – comes out and does a pelvic thrust, takes off his shirt, and does a handstand. He doesn’t want to be looked at for only his “bod” yet that is what he just showed. He will now be known as Meathead.
Brooks – has a ukulele and sings a song, and smashes the ukulele  . . . watch out Pete Townsand!
Drew, Jake’s mini-me – reads Shakespeare.
Chris – twirls hula hoops in high heels on his arms.
Brydon -  slides out and does a pelvic thrust dance move, it is not pretty. Brydon, stick to the Army!
Naked Texas Zak – plays the guitar, and sings a song. He may have some talent after all besides walking around with no clothes on.
Bring on the swimsuits:
Drew, Jake’s mini-me is up first, he’s in board shorts, and does an okay strut.
Mikey AKA Meathead is also wearing board shorts, and comes out like he’s going to break into Magic Mike. Oh, puhlease don’t!
Brooks – wearing board shorts, came out and had a great strut, and was funny!
Ben – in the Speedo, that he is not happy about hardly strutted.

I am rolling! The guys come out and string across the stage and they hold hands.
2nd Runner up is Brooks
1st  Runner up is Naked Texas Zak.
The winner of the first Bachelorette Mr. America is Kasey.  Really???  And he covers his face with his hands like he’s going to cry. All the guys high five him, a king’s crown is put on him and he’s given roses. This is too stinkin’ funny!!!!
Brooks was a better choice.
Naked Texas Zak is complaining. Please can he leave soon, he whines like a two year old!

At the pool party, Chris pulls Des aside and tells her he writes poetry, he wants her to see the serious side of her. Kinda strange to read poetry on a group date, and in the pool, but when you want to stand out as a candidate that’s what you do. He’s not one of my faves.
Des apparently was impressed, because she kissed him.
Inside the guys are quibbling about the rose. Here we go again, whining about Ben. Guys, concentrate on building a relationship not who else is. That is annoying!
While Ben doesn’t seem to be popular, I have to agree with him, he’s not there to be buddies with the guys; he is there to have a relationship with Des.
When Des and Ben go to the pool, the growling begins from the seating area. Ben couldn’t do anything right by these dudes if he was saving her from falling off a building. They’d still hate him. He shows her a necklace with his son’s thumb print.
Brooks can’t handle it any more, so he says “I’m Out” and leaves and the guys follow.

Oh my goodness! James is preparing for his one on one. He talks about having the penthouse to himself, being able to relax, and he gets into a bubble bath eating chocolate covered strawberries. Really?!?!?!? Are we a manly man??? Me thinks not!

Back at the pool party, Naked Texas Zak sings the rest of the song he had sang in the talent show. And the rose goes to Naked Texas Zak. UGH!

James and Des leave for their date, and meet Jackie from the American Red Cross. Des says that instead of an extravagant date, this will be different; they will be touring the Jersey shore to see the damage from hurricane Sandy. As they fly over, Jackie describes how the waves were crushing the buildings and homes.
James is really struck by the devastation. A roller coaster is in the water, as James says, it use to be a sign of joy, there is a flag on the top that represents hope.
James goes on saying that this created a bond with Des.
Out of the helicopter and walking around Seaside Heights they can feel the devastation first hand. Des says it’s like a ghost town.
They run into some locals, and they tell their story to James and Des. Manny and Jan’s story is just heart wrenching. They entered the shelter on their anniversary.
Des and James talk about it and give them their date that ABC had arranged for them. Love this! This is exactly what my hubby and I would do. James says they could just eat fast food.
Seeing Manny and Jan, on the date was so sweet.
James and Des have pizza, beer and conversation, so much better than the date with Brad. The conversation just flowed.
Jan and Manny receive a gift, it is a wedding album restored that was ruined by water. Just precious!
Part of the date was dancing to Darius Rucker. It was sweet to see them dancing and enjoying themselves after all the devastation, it was also a sweet moment for James and Des because they were selfless and gave it away.
James gets the rose he deserved it how many of the guys would’ve given up the date.

Back at the penthouse, Brydon, is complaining about how his feelings are waning and he is not sure he will accept the rose if she offers it to him. I think I hear the Army calling your name dude!
She pulls Michael away. Michael tells her why he likes her with individual letters. Corny, cheesy, but cute, and he gets a kiss!
Chris and Des talk about their family, and being comfortable around each other. And a kiss.
Brydon gets his chance with Des, and he goes on about how this is hard for him, their first date was amazing . . blah, blah, blah.
In the sitting area the guys are psychoanalyzing Brydon and Des’ conversation.

Roses:
Chris
Brooks
Juan Pablo, I didn’t see that one after his bomb shell of having a daughter.
Drew, Jake’s mini-me
Michael

Rut-Roh, Ben gets a rose
Kasey
Des calls Brydon’s name and he just stands there, and then he goes forward and accepts the rose.
He needs to go!
Meathead gets the rose AKA Mikey.

Zak K. does not get a rose and he is very sad.

Des tells the guys that they are going to a place with castles, beer, and the men wear lederhosen.
They toast to making new memories in new cities.

Watching the previews we see that James is not here for Des, but honing himself to be the next bachelor, and Ben is a fraud and needs to be exposed.

The Mr. America out takes are hilarious with the guys cat calling each other as they practice strutting!









  




 
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