COVID

Recently 4 of my family members contracted COVID (despite starting shots) and 3 of us didn’t catch it. Now the 2-year-old has tested positive. Needless to say, I AM overwhelmed and depressed.

I will be temporarily closing my blog and social media, to include all comments. When things are more normal, I’ll start again. I will, also catch everything up at that time.

Thank you for your understanding.

Blessings~

Robbie

Your Finances God’s Way by Scott LaPierre

Publisher’s Summary

Nine Kids. One Income. Zero Debt.

Ever since he got married, author and pastor Scott LaPierre has supported his family on a single salary while remaining debt-free. He’s witnessed the stress that accompanies financial insecurity, yet he’s learned firsthand that even those with a limited income can eliminate monetary worries when they abide by biblical principles.

With Your Finances God’s Way, you’ll replace negative spending habits with positive patterns that will set you on the road to financial freedom. Drawing from the Bible’s wisdom on money management, this book provides essential steps backed by proven practices, helping you

  • get the most out of your money by paying off debt and building up savings
  • make informed spending choices that help you avoid anxiety, regret, and conflict
  • enjoy the fruits of managing your money in a way that honors God

Use what God has provided to thrive! Whether you’re young or old, married or single, working or staying at home, Your Finances God’s Way will give you everything you need to be a Christlike steward of the resources you’ve been given

Scott LaPierre’s perspicaciously written Your Finances God’s Way guides us through what God has to say about our finances and how to be effective stewards of our money.

In the first few chapters, LaPierre lays the framework for financial application; then he moves on to the “core” of the book. I appreciated his viewpoint, which mirrors God’s viewpoint, particularly because he practices what he preaches within his family, including his wife and nine (9) children.

The book is replete with Scriptural context and parables from the Lord. There are numerous practical applications, as well as links to budget worksheets and an extensive number of resources listed in the endnotes, chapter by chapter.

LaPierre devotes several chapters to giving and how we as Christians should give. Other chapters include God’s view of debt, saving and retirement.

I received a review copy of this book from the author via Booksprout. All opinions are my own, and I am voluntarily leaving this review.

Flashback to Saturday Silly

A little girl was holding her stomach saying, “Mommy, my tummy hurts.” Her mother replied, “That’s because it’s empty, you have to put something in it!”

Later, the Pastor and his wife were visiting and stayed for dinner. The Pastor wasn’t feeling well and said, “I have a terrible headache!”

The little girl perked up and smiled her sweetest smile. Then said, “Mom says that’s because it’s empty and you need to put something in it!”

Corner Booth by Chautona Havig on Tour with Celebrate Lit with Giveaway

Corner Booth

About the Book

Book: Corner Booth

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance

Release date: March 17, 2015

Corner Booth Cover

A daring move forges the love of a lifetime

A rushed lunch and a bold move introduce Carlie to a stranger—one who hardly acknowledges her existence as he sits across from her, sharing his booth to save her a wait in a long line.
What began as a random encounter becomes a weekly date in which Carlie chatters about her life to a silent lunchmate. Much about him interests her–his slightly Euro fashion sense, his commitment to the work he does as he eats his lunch week after week, and his evident attention to the running monologue she shares between bites of meals that he inevitably pays for.
Dean gets to know the woman across from him–looks forward to their lunches each week, learns valuable lessons about himself—but when the café is threatened, and then when she doesn’t show up one day, he suspects their unusual friendship means more to him than he imagined.

Settle into the booth with Carlie and Dean and learn just how eloquent silence really is.

Click here to get your copy!

A Very Unusual book with a very unusual premise.

Expect the unexpected, as I’ve learned from reading many Chautona Havig books, and Corner Booth fulfills that expectation munificently. I thoroughly enjoy her books.

Having said that, Corner Booth and I were somehow at odds. It wasn’t because the book was long, even though it was, nor was it that the main characters were not likeable, because they were. I can’t even claim it was because the “villain,” as it were, wasn’t evil enough; he certainly was. So, what exactly was it? It’s almost too unbelievable to be true! Of course, I know it’s fiction—in case anyone thought I missed that little tidbit.

Havig tackles several hot-button issues, for example, abusive, borderline violent relationships, low self-esteem and unemployment.

The story held my attention and had a few surprises. Sadly, the epilogue was overly brief. However, if you want a book to read, savor and spend some time with, then Corner Booth is the one.

I received a review copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. All opinions are my own, and I am voluntarily leaving this review.

About the Author

Chautona

USA Today Bestselling author of Aggie and Past Forward series, Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.

More from Chautona

You know, originally, I had Dean as a guy who was too wrapped up in his own little world to care about anyone else—the stereotypical academic. I pictured him buried deep in original Biblical manuscripts, annoyed that anyone would dare to invade his study time.

But you know what? That’s the easy character.

When I went back to edit the book, I had this thought. What if Dean weren’t reclusive at all? What if he were kind of a know-it-all who couldn’t keep his thoughts to himself. Maybe a child prodigy who was used to people thinking him rather brilliant and looking for his insights.

Yeah… I could get into that.

There was just one small problem. I’d written the entire book without him talking much at all on those Wednesdays. Now what?

After much deliberation, even more prayer, and a bit of fudging, I came up with the solution. What if he just challenged himself for “one lunch?” Just one hour or so of not talking to prove to himself (and his peers) that he could do it.

How could he possibly know he’d set things up for months of wordless lunches—on his part? And what would a person learn in a situation like that?

I’ve never admitted this before, but I tested it a bit. At situations where I could, I forced myself to listen to people’s stories, their questions, their opinions. The hard part was not spending my listening time formulating my response (how rude anyway!). I really had to focus on exactly what they said, how their voice altered based on their emotions, and what others around us had to say to encourage (or not—too often not, I’ll admit).

I learned a lot with the experiment, and I’ll be honest. I still catch myself listening with an ear to how I’ll respond instead of really listening. No, I don’t expect to find some café romance for myself. My guy is amazing, and he’s probably the only person on the planet who could put up with me, so… I think I’ll keep him. But I do expect to keep learning how to really hear people. You know… kind of like Jesus did. Imagine that.

Blog Stops

Pause for Tales, May 9

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 9

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 10

Lots of Helpers, May 11

Miriam Jacob, May 11

Texas Book-aholic, May 12

By the Book, May 13

Inklings and notions, May 14

Spoken from the Heart, May 15

For Him and My Family, May 15

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, May 16

deb’s Book Review, May 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 18

Mary Hake, May 18

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, May 20

Blogging With Carol, May 21

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, May 21

Simple Harvest Reads, May 22 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a paperback copy of the book!!

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/1d735/corner-booth-celebration-tour-giveaway

A Rose for the Resistance by Angela K Couch on tour with Celebrate Lit, Giveaway Included

A Rose for the REsistance

About the Book

Book: A Rose for the Resistance

Author: Angela K. Couch

Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance/Christian

Release date: April, 2022

9781636092072 (4)

A French Woman and German Soldier Create a Truce

Full of intrigue, adventure, and romance, this new series celebrates the unsung heroes—the heroines of WWII.

With her father in a German POW camp and her home in Ste Mere Eglise, France, under Nazi occupation, Rosalie Barrieau will do anything to keep her younger brother safe. . .even from his desire to join the French resistance. Until she falls into the debt of a German solder—one who delivers a wounded British pilot to her door. Though not sure what to make of her German ally, Rosalie is thrust deep into the heart of the local underground. As tensions build toward the allied invasion of Normandy, she must decide how much she is willing to risk for freedom.

Click here to get your copy!

Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres (I’d have a hard time picking a favorite among several) and World War II has long piqued my interest. A novel about WWII, particularly from the perspective of another country, in this case France, near Normandy and Ste Mere Eglise, was a must-read for me.

With its blend of intrigue, peril, danger and romance, the plot is quite captivating. Couch does a marvelous job of drawing you in and keeping you there. The characters are believable and understandable. Their battles with right and wrong, as well as their questions about God and faith, may be relatable to anyone.

For WW II aficionados, the novel is a sine qua non. The book could be finished in a single day. I find that to be both a blessing and a bane because I love to savor books, but at the same time, I want to know what happened!

Angela K. Couch’s A Rose for the Resistance is the fifth (5) installment of the “Heroines of WW II” series. However, it can easily be read as a standalone.

I received a review copy of this book from Celebrate Lit through  NetGalley. All opinions are my own, and I am voluntarily leaving this review.

About the Author

AngelaCouch

To keep from freezing in the great white north, Angela K Couch cuddles under quilts with her laptop. Winning short story contests, being a semi-finalist in ACFW’s Genesis Contest, and a finalist in the 2016 International Digital Awards also helped warm her up. As a passionate believer in Christ, her faith permeates the stories she tells. Her martial arts training, experience with horses, and appreciation for good romance sneak in as well. When not writing, she stays fit (and toasty warm) by chasing after four munchkins.

More from Angela

The story of A Rose for the Resistance has been in the making for a while. Rosalie and Franz came to life for me in the first novel I started writing as a teenager… (not even going to mention how long ago that was). Though much of that early work will never see the light of day, I am glad I can finally share them with you.

Every November 11th since I was a child, I would sit with my dad and watch WWII documentaries and movies like A Bridge too Far, or The Longest Day which featured Sainte-Mère-Église during the D-day landings. So many of those stories beg to be remembered and I tried to include as much as I could in this novel, even in passing. Stories such as John Steele of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment who dropped into the warzone of Sainte-Mère-Église that night and his chute caught on the spire of the church. He hung limply for hours, pretending to be dead, before the Germans took him prisoner. John later escaped and rejoined his division. Or, Henry Langrehr who landed five miles from his drop zone, crashing through a greenhouse on the way down. He was unharmed from the fall, but was later wounded and captured. He lived into his nineties to tell the tale.

Many of the events and deeds of The Resistance in the novel are also pulled from history. The French citizen’s willingness to risk their lives to transport weapons and information, and to staunchly resist the brutal German occupation. It is estimated that approximately 90,000 men women – and children – were killed, tortured, or deported by the Germans for their efforts.

Though many of the characters in this story are fictional, there are so many men and women who truly did live through the horrors of the War in Europe, and more importantly risked or sacrificed their all for the freedom and lives of others.

I pray we never forget.

Blog Stops

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 29

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 29

Books, Books, and More Books, April 29

The Write Escape, April 30

Remembrancy, April 30

Southern Gal Loves to Read, May 1

Rachael’s Inkwell, May 1

Texas Book-aholic, May 1

Genesis 5020, May 2

Where Crisis & Christ Collide, May 2

Inklings and notions, May 2

She Lives To Read, May 3

lakesidelivingsite, May 3

Betti Mace, May 4

For Him and My Family, May 4

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 4

Sodbuster Living, May 5

deb’s Book Review, May 5

Book Butterfly in Dreamland, May 5

Locks, Hooks and Books, May 6

Jeanette’s Thoughts, May 6

Vicarious Living, May 6

Older & Smarter?, May 7

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 7

Sylvan Musings, May 7

Connie’s History Classroom, May 8

Blossoms and Blessings, May 8

Mary Hake, May 8

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, May 9

Splashes of Joy, May 9

Through the Fire Blogs, May 9

Bizwings Blog, May 10

Pause for Tales, May 10

Labor Not in Vain, May 10

Bigreadersite, May 11

Where Faith and Books Meet, May 11

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, May 11

CarpeDiem, May 12

Lights in a Dark World, May 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Angela is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and copy of the book!!

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/1d3bb/a-rose-for-the-resistance-celebration-tour-giveaway

Behind Love’s Wall by Carrie Fancett Pagels

Publisher’s Summary

The Grand Hotel Slowly Reveals Her Secrets

Visit historic American landmarks through the Doors to the Past series. History and today collide in stories full of mystery, intrigue, faith, and romance.

Two successful women, a hundred-and-twenty-years apart, build walls to protect their hearts. Modern-day Willa, a successful interior decorator, is chosen to consult for the Grand Hotel’s possible redesign. She discovers a journal detailing the struggles of a young woman, Lily—which reveals dark secrets. The renowned singer wasn’t who she pretended to be. As Willa reaches out to Lily’s descendant, a charismatic and prominent landscape artist, she lets down her guard. Should she share the journal with him, or once again erect a wall as she struggles to redesign both the Grand and her life? 

Mackinac Island…The Grand Hotel…what fantastic settings for a novel, and who better to write them than Carrie Fancett Pagels, a true connoisseur and aficionado of both.

Carrie Fancett Pagels’ Behind Love’s Wall is a dual timeline novel set on Mackinac Island and at The Grand Hotel. Pagels’ knowledge and affection for the island and hotel resound and reverberate throughout, which gives the work a truer, more engaging and intriguing authenticity.

Two main characters, Lilly in 1895 and Willa in 2020, are surrounded by mystery and intrigue. Furthermore, COVID’s limitations also have a role. Only a journal provides insight into one life, bringing hope to the other, despite the fact that they are separated by 125 years. Neither of them dreamed how their stories would end.

I really enjoyed the inclusion of some characters from Pagels’ prior books, too. Their roles are well done, keep the flow of the book going and provide an update to their lives. However, reading the prior novels is not required to follow and comprehend Behind Love’s Wall. In addition, I admire and appreciate her approach to matters of faith.

I received an advanced review copy of this book from NetGalley. All opinions are my own and I am voluntarily leaving this review.

Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares by Srividhya Lakshmanan, Illustrated by Akansha Krishnan

Publisher’s Summary

Go on a wild adventure with Gugulu, the sloth bear, as he takes on a journey deep inside the western ghats of India.

Gugulu’s parents won’t allow him to go to school alone. But he can’t wait to explore the forest on his own. So one day, he runs ahead of his parents. And before he knows it, he ends up in a river filled with danger – first a roaring leopard, then a gang of gaurs, but soon he shrinks in fear. Will naughty Gugulu be able to reunite with his parents?

Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares, is a quirky, funny, beautifully illustrated story about new experiences and courageously facing challenges when encountered.

Gugulu, The Little Bear Dares is a story about a little sloth bear who decides on the way to school that he does not want to stay with his parents. He is able to flee and encounters a variety of other species. He also has quite an adventure-but no spoilers here!

Sloth Bear

The author, Srividhya Lakshmanan, introduces readers to a wide range of different species endemic to the Western Ghats, popularly known as India’s Sahyadri Mountain region. At the end of the story, Lakshmanan identifies 16 of the animals, noting if they are endangered and/or indigenous to the region. A maze is also included at the end of the story to assist children in guiding Gugulu to school.

The illustrator, Akansha Krishnan, employs original interpretational illustrations of the various animals, which will assist young children in connecting with the story.

The recommended reading age is 4 – 8-year-olds. However, I believe that reading the story to younger children would be enjoyable for them, too. Older readers may also be interested in learning more about the varied wildlife of the Western Ghats.

I received an advanced review copy of this book from the author. All opinions are my own and I am voluntarily leaving this review.

Sweet Rivals by Kari Trumbo on Tour with Celebrate Lit

Sweet Rivals

About the Book

Book: Sweet Rivals

Author: Kari Trumbo

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release date: March 29, 2022

Sweet Rivals Cover

Fay is about to lose her business…

…to the only guy she’s ever thought might be good for her.

Fay Ravven has spent years building a floral business on Mimosa Island. Too bad a chain florist has moved in right down the street. As her business wanes, she realizes her rival is none other than Corbin Lowel, the very man who swept her heart away at her friend’s wedding.

Corbin knows he’s not good enough for Fay. His friends remind him all the time that, as a florist, he’s not really man enough for anyone. That doesn’t stop him from stepping out of his comfort zone and going to Fay’s store to see if she remembers him. That’s when he discovers that his business is killing hers.

What are rivals to do when they can’t stop thinking about each other? Plan the flowers for someone else’s wedding, of course.

When Corbin and Fay must see each other and work together, will they dive through their pain and reach for the stars? Or will the roses be too prickly for two hurt hearts?

Read the next Sparrow Island novel in the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

Click here to get your copy!

Sweet Rivals, by Kari Trumbo, is part of the “Independence Island” series’ “Sparrow Island” stories. I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the Independence series and the many authors who have written the various stories.

In Sweet Rivals, Trumbo addresses a number of issues. Bullies and apparent friends, I believe, was one of the most difficult topics she addressed, especially from a male standpoint. Corbin Lowel is a newcomer to the islands who is attempting to integrate and make friends. During this time, he meets three women who become friends with him. Now, Corbin isn’t your standard masculine hero as depicted in novels. He’s not a big guy with a lot of muscle, his interests involve a floral business, he’s very observant and he likes to dress nicely all the time. As a result, these women, one in particular, relentlessly tease and bully him.

I enjoyed how the narrative depicted the challenges and the difficulty inherent in finding new acquaintances, as well as how desperation or near-desperation may lead anyone, especially adults, to settle for less than their best.

Fay Ravven is a genuine friend. Many individuals would be hesitant or back away from communicating truth in love, as the Bible instructs. However, Fay believes that she should follow this rule.

Fay and Corbin are set on a journey of truth, friendship, advocacy and love. They encounter many hardships and hurdles conspiring against them, but they persevere.

Bertha, a surly, set-in-her-ways curmudgeon, I think was my favorite character in the book. She, too, needed a true friend and found one in Fay.

I received this book from Celebrate Lit. However, my review is voluntary, and all opinions are my own.

About the Author

kari

Kari writes swoony heroes and places that become characters with detail and heart.
Her favorite place to write about is the place her heart lives, (even if she doesn’t) South Dakota.

Kari loves reading, listening to contemporary Christian music, singing when no one’s listening, and curling up near the wood stove when winter hits. She makes her home in central Minnesota, land of frigid toes and mosquitoes the size of compact cars, with her husband of over twenty years. They have two daughters, two sons, one cat, and one hungry wood stove.

More from Kari

Nudge from the Almighty or personal desire?

Sometimes what we should do is as clear as mud. When I first felt the call to write, I worried that it was a “me” thing. I worried that the nudge that I felt was for my own glory. It didn’t matter that I felt the desire to write Christian fiction. We can do all the things we think are right and still be in the wrong place according to God’s will.

When I literally felt captive to the idea of writing—like, I couldn’t move forward without doing something about it—then I finally considered that perhaps this was God’s will and not just me wanting something. But it took years of the Holy Spirit prodding me before I ever acted.

Fay is like that. She starts her flower business certain she is doing the will of God and it helps that she really wants it too. But she works so hard, putting in so many hours, that she forgets about why she started it and it becomes all work for her own glory. Her business.

Enter Corbin, a really sweet guy who is in the wrong place at the wrong time and is used by God to nudge Fay away from her idol and into a deeper relationship. He’s a rival flower shop owner, and the only guy she’s ever felt a connection to. Which makes for some pretty interesting dialogue for the two of them.

Fact is, none of us likes to hear that our desire—especially when we think we’re doing the right thing—is wrong. No one ever wants loving correction by a Heavenly Father who cares about us deeply. We’re supposed to get it right.

Fay has to find out if it’s her business that’s getting in the way of her relationship or if it’s really a heart issue. I hope you’ll enjoy finding out along with her.

Kari

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 19

lakesidelivingsite, April 20

Texas Book-aholic, April 20

Inklings and notions, April 21

For Him and My Family, April 22

By the Book, April 22

deb’s Book Review, April 23

Blossoms and Blessings, April 23

The Christian Fiction Girl, April 24

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 25

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, April 26

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 26

She Lives To Read, April 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 27

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, April 28 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 29

Miriam Jacob, April 29

CarpeDiem, April 30

Connect in Fiction, April 30

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, May 1

Simple Harvest Reads, May 2 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Splashes of Joy, May 2

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Kari is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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/1cc84/sweet-rivals-celebration-tour-giveaway