Sunday, April 28, 2019

GONE TOO SOON REVIEW AND PROMO


About the Book



Book: Gone Too Soon  
Author: Melody Carlson  
Genre: Young Adult
 Release Date: November 15, 2018

An icy road. A car crash. A family changed forever. Hannah Josephson had always been the “perfect” daughter. Kiera couldn’t live up to her before, and she certainly can’t now that her older sister has died in a car accident. But the image she carried resentfully of Hannah is challenged when she finds her dead sister’s diary and begins to read. Apparently Hannah’s final year wasn’t as perfect as everyone thought. Caught in a pattern of blaming each other, the Josephson family is falling apart. Their father has left, their mother is mixing opiates and alcohol, little sister Maddie has been shipped off to spend the whole summer with their grandmother, and Kiera feels utterly alone with her grief and anger. A summer job helping at a park in a poor section of town provides a friend and a purpose. But it’s Hannah’s diary that fills her thoughts. For the first time in years, she feels close to the sister she’s lost. But can the knowledge she gleans about her possibly help her patch back together the family that seems determined to implode?

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author



Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women, and children. That’s a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a “storyteller.” Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, True Colors etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She’s won a number of awards (including RT’s Career Achievement Award, the Rita, and the Gold medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog.

More from Melody

I think I’ve written about a hundred or more teen novels, but Gone Too Soon, a rather serious story, is a bit different. There’s no denying I’ve covered a bunch of gritty issues—everything from self-harm to suicide to murder—but I’ve never written a novel quite like this one. For starters, I wrote it from two viewpoints. Both the teenage daughter and her mother express themselves in this story. And because the premise involves an untimely death, the family is torn apart. As a result, there’s a lot of guilt and blame and confusion going around. They’re all in pain. I’ve been asked several times what “inspired” this story. And I’m sad to say that it’s simply a case of “art imitating life.” I live in a small community where too many young people have died “too soon.” These untimely deaths—for a variety of random and unexplainable reasons—are devastating. I know more than a dozen families (some very close friends) who have tragically lost a child. So I’ve seen up close how it can tear a family apart. It’s truly heartbreaking, often leaving friends and family without words of comfort or explanation. But that’s not the only reason I wrote this story. My hope is that teens (who often feel invincible) will be reminded that they are mortal and that this earthly life is temporary. Hard as it sounds, death is inevitable. And it’s not that I want everyone to be obsessed about dying, but we do live in a culture that practices denial about the end of a life. No one really wants to talk about it. My hope is that readers will take a hard, honest look, peel back some layers, and face death for what it is—a part of earthly life. And I hope readers will close the book with a little more understanding . . . and hope.

Review and thoughts of Gone Too Soon by Melody Carlson:  Melody does an excellent job at tackling difficult subjects.   In Gone Too Soon, she goes through the different stages of grief that every family member goes through and sometimes you do feel like you are alone in your grief.   

The thing that Melody deals with is also the loss of a child (no matter the age).  Especially, the loss of an older child and how easy it is to blame others for the loss.   It also looks at the family dynamics and how they can all be torn apart by the loss of a family member.

How do you come to grips with the loss?  How do you stop blaming one person for causing the death?  How do you mend your family and put it back together after a tragedy?  Join Melody and the griping story of the Josephson family.  See how a summer job and a diary from your deceased sister can bring insights and pull a family together.  Again another excellent read from an author, who is not afraid to tackle the difficult subjects in writing that so many authors are afraid to do.

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Giveaway


 
To celebrate her tour, Melody is giving away a grand prize of paperback copy of Gone Too Soon and a matching journal!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.  Giveaway


Friday, April 26, 2019

MEMORY HOUSE BY




About the Book

Book: The Memory House  
Author: Rachel Hauck  
Genre: Christian Romance  
Release Date: April 2, 2019  

Embracing the future means remembering the past . . .
When Beck Holiday lost her father in the North Tower on 9/11, she also lost her memories of him. Eighteen years later, she’s a tough New York City cop burdened with a damaging secret, suspended for misconduct, and struggling to get her life in order. Meanwhile a mysterious letter arrives informing her she’s inherited a house along Florida’s northern coast, and what she discovers there will change her life forever. Matters of the heart only become more complicated when she runs into handsome Bruno Endicott, a driven sports agent who fondly recalls the connection they shared as teenagers. But Beck doesn’t remember that, either. Decades earlier, widow Everleigh Applegate lives a steady, uneventful life with her widowed mother after a tornado ripped through Waco, Texas, and destroyed her new, young married life. When she runs into old high school friend Don Callahan, she begins to yearn for change. Yet no matter how much she longs to love again, she is hindered by a secret she can never share. Fifty years separate the women but through the power of love and miracle of faith, they each find healing in a beautiful Victorian known affectionately as The Memory House.

Click here to purchase your copy.



About the Author:





Rachel Hauck is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA TODAY bestselling author of The Wedding Dress, which was also named Inspirational Novel of the Year by Romantic Times and was a RITA finalist. Rachel lives in central Florida with her husband and pet and writes from her ivory tower. Visit her online at RachelHauck.com; Facebook: RachelHauck; Twitter: @RachelHauck; Instagram: @rachelhauc

THOUGHTS AND REVIEW OF THE MEMORY HOUSE BY RACHEL HAUCK:  Where can you go wrong with a Rachel Hauck read.  If you have never read a Rachel Hauck book, please pick this one up and you will be hooked.  

Rachel takes you through the lives of Beck Holiday, Bruno Endicot, Everleigh Applegate.  It is a time hop novel that intertwines these people.  Secrets that lay hidden only waiting to be discovered.

Come within the pages of The Memory House and discover what secrets are waiting to come to light and how these lives will all come together.

Excerpt from The Memory House:






When Mama Applegate spoke as if Everleigh were a guest rather than a family member, she embraced it with grace. Because at the end of the day, she was Rhett’s wife. She alone shared his dreams, his heart, his life. And at night, when she couldn’t sleep, his soft breathing was her lullaby. “Listen, mister, I have to get back to work or I won’t make it home in time for our dinner.” She tugged at his shirt collar. “So are you going to tell me why you’re here?” “I was going to wait until tonight, but I got so excited . . .” Rhett stepped over to the desk in front of Everleigh’s and retrieved a long white canister. “Here. Open it. I feel like a kid at Christmas.” “Rhett, what have you done?” She pried away the cap and slipped out a set of drawings. “Here, let me.” Rhett unrolled a rendering of a cozy house with a wraparound porch nestled between two cottonwoods. “Our house, Ev. I took those sketches you made after we were married and gave them to the architect. What do you think?” “Th-this is our house?” She wrapped her arms around his waist, leaning against his thick arm as she studied the drawing. “It’s our house, darling.” Everleigh studied the drawing. It was just like she imagined. “Are you sure?” She gazed up at her husband. “I didn’t think we’d saved enough money.” “We’ve saved every penny of your salary, and I finally sold the stud bull to Jacob Marshall. He’s been after me for a year . . .” Rhett held her with one hand while flipping through the drawing with the other. “I bought the ten acres by the stream. You know, the one with the trees we loved. Dad wanted to give it to us, but I said no strings. I wanted to buy it so he can’t hold it over me. Not that he would, but family business can get tricky.” Everleigh leaned to see the name of the road. Memory Lane. “Darling, the section right off Memory Lane? The spot I wanted?” Rhett’s grandmother had named the dirt road years ago, when she imagined a large family with lots of grandkids running around. She envisioned an Applegate community. But her sons, Melvin and Earl, went to war. Only Earl—nicknamed Spike—returned home the fall of 1918. He inherited the ranch, married Mama Applegate, and fathered Rhett, an only child. Grandma’s two daughters married and moved away. “Your granny would be proud, darling,” Everleigh said. “We’re beginning her dream.” “Sh-she would.” Rhett cleared his throat, pressing his fist over his cough. “So, w-what do you think?” Tell him! The timing could not have been more perfect. “Rhett, sweetheart—” He jerked his wrist up, checking his watch. “Oh, Ev, sorry, darling, but I promised Dad I’d pick him up from the hardware store thirty minutes ago.” He gave her a quick, passing kiss. “I’d planned to show you these tonight, but I just couldn’t wait.” He rolled up the drawings and tucked them into the canister. “What is it you wanted to say?” On reflex, he checked his watch again. “Nothing,” she said, smiling. “I’ll see you later. We can talk then. I have work to do anyway.” “You sure?” Everleigh fell into him and pressed her cheek against his chest. “You make my dreams come true, Rhett Applegate.” He kissed her one more time, then held her at arm’s length. “Distraction, girl, you are one beautiful distraction.”


Blog Stops:




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Simple Harvest Reads (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Giveaway


 
To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away a grand prize of a copy of The Memory House!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/e2aa/the-memory-house-celebration-tour-giveaway


Thursday, March 14, 2019

MENDING FENCES BLOG POST AND REVIEW


About the Book



Book: Mending Fences  
Author: Suzanne Woods Fisher  
Genre: Christian fiction, Amish, Mennonite  
Release Date: February 5, 2019

Every saint has a past. Every sinner has a future. Luke Schrock is a new and improved man after a stint in rehab, though everyone in Stoney Ridge only remembers the old Luke. They might have forgiven him, but nobody trusts him. He has been allowed to live at Windmill Farm under two conditions. First, he must make a sincere apology to each person he’s hurt. Second, he must ask each victim of mischief to describe the damage he caused. Simple, Luke thinks. Offering apologies is easy. But discovering the lasting effects his careless actions have caused isn’t so simple. It’s gut-wrenching. And his list keeps growing. Izzy Miller, beautiful and frustratingly aloof, also boards at Windmill Farm, and Luke’s clumsy efforts to befriend her only insult and annoy her. Eager to impress, Luke sets out to prove himself to her by locating her mother. When he does, her identity sends shock waves through Stoney Ridge. “A funny, heartwarming story of friendship, love, and the possibility of happily ever after.”—Amy Clipston, bestselling author of Seat by the Hearth “Suzanne Woods Fisher has written a sweet and poignant story you won’t want put down. Definitely a must read!”—Kathleen Fuller, bestselling author of the Amish of Birch Creek series

Click here to purchase your copy.
 

About the Author

Suzanne Woods Fisher is an award-winning, bestselling author of more than two dozen novels, including the Nantucket Legacy, Amish Beginnings, The Bishop’s Family, and The Inn at Eagle Hill series. She is also the author of several nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace and The Heart of the Amish. She lives in California. Learn more at https://suzannewoodsfisher.com and follow Suzanne on Facebook @SuzanneWoodsFisherAuthor and Twitter @suzannewfisher.  


More from Suzanne

A Friend in Need   “A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.” –Walter Winchell Luke Schrock was nearly friendless. He returned to Stoney Ridge in Mending Fences after a stint in rehab only because his bishop, David Stoltzfus, strongly encouraged him. And everybody knows you didn’t say no to your bishop. But nobody else in town wanted anything to do with Luke. They forgave him for the trouble he’d caused in his last downward spiral, the one that went too far. The one that even scared Luke. Forgiving him was the easy part. The Amish of Stoney Ridge were intentional forgivers. It was their trust—that’s what he would have to earn. Trust was a fragile thing. Once broken, it wasn’t easily mended. Somehow, David was still able to look past the behavior to see the best of Luke Schrock. He didn’t stop there. He found a family who was willing to take Luke in, and he spent hours with him—at times as a mentor, at times as a father figure, but mostly as a friend. A loyal friend can have a powerful impact. Consider those friends in the town of Capernaum, who carried their paralyzed friend to Jesus for healing—so determined to get to Him that they dragged his stretcher up onto a roof, broke through the roof tiles, and lowered him down. Can you imagine being in the crowd, listening to Jesus, as straw and tile pieces and branches and bugs started to drop down from the ceiling? A shocking display…of devoted friendship. And what a miraculous outcome for that paralyzed man!* I won’t tell you how Luke’s story ends—only that he works hard to find ways to make amends to those he hurt, to regain trust. Especially the hard-to-earn trust of a brown-eyed beauty named Izzy. Do you have a real friend like David Stoltzfus, who walks in when the rest of the world has walked out? Or maybe the better question, for you, for me, is to ask ourselves if we are friends to others like David Stoltzfus was to Luke Schrock. I know I want to be. *This miracle is reported in three gospels: Mark 2:1-12, Matthew 9:1-8, Luke 5:17-26.  

MY REVIEW AND THOUGHTS OF THIS READ:

I must admit that this is my very first read from Suzanne Woods Fischer and it will not be my last one either even though I do consider Amish Fiction my "go to genre".

This has a different take on things than your typical Amish Fiction.  It shows how everyone struggles with issues even in the Amish Community.   I think Suzanne does an excellent job at showing the struggles that Luke Schrock has had growing up and some of the issues that he has faced.   Just because you are Amish does not exempt you from the struggles of fitting in and finding a sense of belonging.   Luke has a lot of lessons to learn and see first hand how his actions caused a lot of heartache for people that he has wronged.  Can you go back and make amends?


What is Izzy Miller's story that causes her to clam up and not tell anyone?  Why does she avoid people? Come in the pages to find out Izzy's full story that she is not telling anyone.


We know that forgiveness is a process and you don't just up one day ask for it and everything be okay the next day.  Everyone has to work it out.  Will Luke find true forgiveness within the community that he has come back to or will he leave the community for good?


Step in the pages and find out the complete story of Izzy and Luke.  No spoilers here!



Blog Stops


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Giveaway


 
To celebrate her tour, Suzanne is giving away a grand prize of an Amazon Kindle!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/de7d/mending-fences-celebration-tour-giveaway