Friday, May 29, 2020

Dear Abby - Videos Abby Likes: Dachshund and Duckling Are Friends

Dear Friends,

I hope your week has been nice. Mine has been good except for rain off and on, which interferes with my walks a bit.

The rain gave me more time, though, to browse cute animal videos online.  I found one I really enjoyed.  It features Loulou the dachshund.  (I have shared at least one of her videos before here).  Her family had a little duckling that hatched in an incubator and Loulou made great friends with the tiny duckling.

There is a sweet scene where Loulou is sleeping by the incubator, and later you see the little duckling nuzzling against her chest when they rest on the couch together. 

I think I would like a duckling of my own!  (I am hoping my Momma cooperates with this wish.)

Here is the short video:



I hope you enjoyed this video.  If you have dogs, have they met ducks or other birds?  I have not met ducks, but often walk by birds in the yard.  I watch them but don't try to chase or scare them.  I figure they are enjoying nature, just like me.

Love,

Abby xoxoxo

Book Review and Giveaway - The Highlander's English Bride by Vanessa Kelly

My Review
The Highlander's English Bride is a historical romance set in 1822. It tells the story of Lady Sabrina Bell, who meets Graeme Kendrick by chance when he rescues her after a thief pushes her into the river. They are very different people, but are drawn together. There is some intrigue based on Sabrina's wealth and position in society and Graeme's adventurous and often dangerous work.

I wanted to read this novel because I read and enjoyed the last book in this series, The Highlander's Christmas Bride. This book is part of a series (Clan Kendrick Series) but I think it would work fine as a standalone read.

I really liked both Sabrina, who is a brave, independent protagonist, and Graeme, who works for the King's spymaster. They were well suited, and sparks certainly were there from their first meeting.

I also enjoyed the British and Scottish settings, and the element of adventure from Graeme's work. 

Some of the situations in the book are seem more modern, i.e. Graeme's words about Sabrina:  "Can't say as I blame the lass or wanting to avoid the marital state. If she's wealthy, what does he have to gain by marrying some toff who'll have the controlling of her?" (p. 34). This emphasis on women's autonomy (while perhaps less likely in the 1820's) added to my enjoyment of the storytelling.

The book is well written, with intriguing characters and terrific dialogue that really moves the story along.  I recommend The Highlander's English Bride for fans of historical romance.

Synopsis
In this dazzling new novel from bestselling author Vanessa Kelly, the wildest member of Clan Kendrick has found his purpose as a government agent. Now he must also meet his match…

Lady Sabrina Bell has never been so embarrassed in her life. Not only did her new suitor fail to appear for their morning rendezvous in Hyde Park, but a thief pushed her into the Serpentine. Being rescued by a burly Highlander just adds to her humiliation. Nor is he content with rescuing her just once. Even when Sabrina travels to Edinburgh as part of King George’s entourage, Graeme Kendrick is there, interfering, exasperating, and so very tempting…

Once notorious for being the most unruly Kendrick brother, Graeme now runs dangerous missions for the King’s spymaster. Yet nothing has prepared him for Sabrina. The only child of a wealthy earl, and the pampered goddaughter of the king himself, she is stubborn, impetuous, and far too good for him. He doesn’t deserve her, but he can protect her and then send her safely back home. But the bonny Sassenach has her own ideas—and a plan for seduction that no red-blooded Highlander could resist…

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

Author Bio
Vanessa Kelly is a USA Today Bestselling, award-winning author who was named by Booklist, the review journal of the American Library Association, as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance.” Her Regency-set historical romances have been nominated in a number of contests, and she has won multiple awards, including the prestigious Maggie Medallion for Best Historical Romance. Her books have been published in nine languages.

Vanessa’s first Clan Kendrick book, The Highlander Who Protected Me, was a USA Today, Barnes & Noble, and BookScan bestseller. The Highlander’s Christmas Bride, her latest book, hit the top 50 on both the Barnes & Noble mass-market bestseller list and on BookScan. The Renegade Royals Series was a national bestseller, as was The Improper Princesses Series. My Fair Princess was named a Goodreads Romance of the Month and is a USA Today and BookScan bestseller.

When she’s not dreaming of plots for her next Regency novel, Vanessa is writing USA Today Bestselling books with her husband, under the pen name of V.K. Sykes.
 
You can find Vanessa at vanessakellyauthor.com or at vksykes.com. For all of Vanessa’s latest news and contests–and to receive a free story–please sign up for her newsletter on her website.

Clan Kendrick Facebook Group | Facebook Author Page | Pinterest | Twitter | Goodreads

 

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of The Highlander Who Protected Me & The Highlander's Christmas Bride & a $20 Amazon Gift Card! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.  

Giveaway Rules 
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on June 9th. You must be 18 or older to enter. 
– Paperback giveaway is open internationally. 
– Only one entry per household. 
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion. 
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen. 
The Highlander's English Bride
 

Friday, May 22, 2020

Dear Abby - Videos Abby Likes: The Calmest Dachshund Puppy

Dear Friends,

I hope you are having a good day!  I've had a busy week, so I will be short and sweet with my post here today.

I found a cute video about a very calm little dachshund puppy.  He has shiny black and tan fur and great big eyes.  This video is from the Loulou and Coco channel on Youtube, and the doxie lives with his family in the Netherlands.  It is a quiet, restful little video.



I hope you enjoyed watching this little puppy video!  It reminded me a bit of my puppy days, which were (ahem!) a few years ago.  One of my friends has a young dachshund puppy (shout out to Emily the doxie!) and I enjoy hearing about her adventures and mischief.

Have a great weekend!

Love,

Abby xoxoxo

Book Review and Giveaway - Killing Time (A Dodie O’Dell Mystery) by Suzanne Trauth

My Review
Killing Time is a cozy mystery set at Halloween on the Jersey Shore.  Dodie O'Dell manages a restaurant called the Windjammer and works with the Etonville Little Theatre.  She's currently working on a production of Dracula, but when a mysterious murder takes place that may involve one of her actors, she starts sleuthing ...

I wanted to read Killing Time because of the community theater setting.  I worked in theater years ago and love books with theater settings.  I also love cozy mysteries and Halloween, so this sounded like a fun read!

This was my first read in the Dodie O'Dell Mystery series.  I picked up on the characters and setting very quickly and enjoyed this book as a standalone.  That said, I have now added the rest of the books in the series to my "to read" list!

I throughly enjoyed this mystery.  It is especially well paced, with Dodie balancing work at the theater, work at her restaurant job, and planning a wedding with her police chief boyfriend, Bill ... all while doing some great sleuthing.

Dodie is a talented amateur detective who manages to get herself in jeopardy several times by taking chances.  She's a likable character, smart, hard working, and relentless about solving the case.

The mystery aspect of this book was well done.  There were a couple of surprising little twists along the way, and the denouement was exciting.

I recommend Killing Time for fans of cozy mysteries, and especially for anyone who enjoys Halloween mysteries or back stage theater settings.  It's a fun read!

Book Synopsis

With Halloween just around the corner, Dodie O’Dell is making preparations to transform the Windjammer Restaurant on the Jersey Shore into a haunted house, while the Etonville Little Theatre is staging Dracula. But casting the titular Transylvanian is proving challenging. The amateur actors in the company are not shy about chewing the scenery, but who among them can convincingly sink their fangs into a victim’s neck? When a mysterious newcomer with a transfixing Eastern European accent lands the part, rumors that he might be an actual vampire start to take flight—not unlike the bat who’s recently been spotted in the town park.

But everyone’s blood really runs cold when a stranger is found in the cemetery with a real stake in his heart. Dodie decides to put her Halloween theme menu on the back burner and stick her neck out to bring the killer into the light of day. She’d better keep her wits about her, though—or Dodie may be the next one to go down for the Count . . .

Author Bio

Suzanne Trauth is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and a former theatre professor at a university. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, the Dramatists Guild, and League of Professional Theatre Women. When she is not writing, Suzanne coaches actors and serves as a celebrant performing wedding ceremonies. She lives in Woodland Park, New Jersey.

Author Links 
Webpage: www.suzannetrauth.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuzanneTrauth/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/SuzanneMTrauth
GoodReads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6187623.Suzanne_M_Trauth

Purchase Links
Amazon – B&N – Kobo

Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Spotlight and Giveaway - Monarchs Under the Sassafras Tree by Lillah Lawson

Book Synopsis
It’s an unusually warm autumn, 1929, and O.T. Lawrence is about as content as a cotton farmer can be in Five Forks, Georgia. Nothing—not poverty, drought, or even the boll weevi—can spoil the idyllic life he shares with his doting wife and children and his beloved twin brother Walt. Until illness and Black Tuesday take everything O.T. ever held dear in one fell swoop. Grieving, drinking, and careening toward homelessness, O.T. is on the brink of ending it all when he receives an odd letter from a teenage acquaintance, the enigmatic Sivvy Hargrove, who is locked away in Milledgeville’s asylum for the insane. Traveling through desperate antebellum towns, O.T. and his daughter Ginny are determined to find Sivvy and discover her story. Set against the backdrop of the Great Depression, Monarchs Under the Sassafras Tree is a love story to Georgia and the spirit of its people—a story of family, unconditional love, poverty, injustice, and finding the strength inside to keep on going when all is lost.

 

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound


Author Bio
Lillah Lawson has been writing since she was 8 years old, when she won a short story contest at her elementary school. The story was about a Princess who gets tired of waiting for the Prince to show up and saves herself. Once she saw her words printed in the local newspaper, she knew she wanted to be a writer.

Having written professionally as well as dabbling in poetry, children’s books and blogging, Lillah finally completed her first novel, Aroha, as part of a NaNoWriMo challenge in 2012.
She lives in Georgia, in the United States, with her partner and son and three rambunctious animals. She is currently working on another novel.

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads


Giveaway  
During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of Monarchs Under the Sassafras Tree! To enter, please use the Gleam form below. 

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on May 22nd. You must be 18 or older to enter. 
– Paperback giveaway is open to the US only. 
– Only one entry per household. 
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion. 
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.  
Sassafras Tree 



Friday, May 15, 2020

Dear Abby - On Height

Dear Friends,

I hope you are having a good week!  I am doing fine.  It is beautiful spring weather here, and I am enjoying walks these days.

My Uncle Dave sent me a funny meme to share with you this week.   It shows a dachshund on stilts:  "Quarantine Day 58: I built myself a Doberman." 

This meme made me think about height.  As most of you know, I am a rescue and traveled across country to live with my Momma.  When she first saw me she loved me and she also said, "she's so tall!"  I am, of course, not tall by dog standards, but I am tall by dachshund standards.  I am a proud dachshund - Jack Russell mix dog.  Momma says I am the height of a Jack Russell and the length of a dachshund.  That sounds about right.  You can see my height in this picture -- I am standing (ahem, rear view of me!) by my late, great brother Barney Fife.  He was a standard dachshund.


I am not allowed to walk stairs or to jump up and down, although I do climb onto the (low) bed in the bedroom I share with Momma.   Here is another picture I found of me from my early days.  I was about one year old here.


I hope all is well with you and your pups, whether they are long and low or tall!  And I wish you a happy weekend.

Love,

Abby xoxoxo


Book Review and Giveaway - Dali Summer by T.J. Brown

My Review
Dali Summer is a historical novel set in 1917 Cadaques, Spain.  It is the story of Dolors Posa, a quiet, reserved librarian who is living her life with tremendous caution.  Dolors was born out of wedlock and her mother committed suicide;  her grandmother, who raised her, instilled a sense of shame in Dolors. One summer Dolors' life changes as she meets a brother and sister who are "summer people" in Cadaques. The sister is a beautiful fortune teller and the brother is handsome, mysterious, and a bit more reserved. Dolors also meets a young painter (13 years old) on the beach named Salvador Dali.

I wanted to read this novel because the setting and characters sounded unique and interesting.  I love novels that feature art history and was intrigued by the Dali character.

This is a really unusual book.  Dolors became color-blind (she only sees black, white, and gray) as the result of a childhood accident. During the summer of 1917 she begins to have visions and headaches and sees vivid colors.  This is a big part of the story.  The visions add a bit of a magical realism element to the storytelling.

Dolors is a unique character.  She has such a strong sense of decorum that she is repressed and afraid to live.  Her grandmother is a thoroughly awful person who has treated Dolors badly all her life, and Dolors still lives her life according to her grandmother's wishes.  There are a couple of other characters in this book who are highly unsympathetic and who cause harm to Dolors (I won't say more, no spoilers) and I found some of these scenes difficult to read.

It was heartening to see Dolors break free of her grandmother's grip over the summer as the result of her new friendship with the summer people and a young Dali.  I enjoyed the book more as Dolors felt more freedom to live her life and pursue her own dreams.

The sense of time and place in Dali Summer is beautifully evoked by T.J. Brown.  I could really picture the small beach town from the author's description.

Dali Summer is a novel that will interest readers who are intrigued by art history and the early life of Salvador Dali, fans of historical fiction, and anyone who wants to spend some time in 1910's coastal Spain.

Book Synopsis
Her wild and vivid visions inspire an icon…
 
Nothing is more important to prim, colorblind Dolors Posa than family and living down the shame of her illegitimate birth, but when the sudden onset of fantastical visions threaten her sterling reputation, she must search for answers before the inhabitants of the tiny village of CadaquĆ©s brand her as demente– crazy like her mother. In a quest to stop her hallucinations, she befriends a beautiful, intoxicating fortune teller and her handsome anarchist brother, as well as becoming a reluctant muse for thirteen-year-old Salvador Dali. In a summer that changes everything, Dolors must choose between her family’s reputation and a life filled with adventure, friendship, rapturous color and the possibility of love.
 
Set against the political upheaval of 1917 Spain, Dali Summer captures the fierce spirit of Catalonia, the generosity and stubbornness of its people and the blossoming promise of a woman who thought life was bland and empty and had long ago had passed her by.



 

Purchase Links


Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound


Author Bio
Well behaved women rarely make history. Teri Brown lived that quote way before she ever even heard it. The two things she is most proud of, (besides her children), is that she jumped out of an airplane once and she beat the original Legend of Zelda video game. She is a novel writer, head banger, pet keeper, math hater, cocktail drinker, booty shaker, book reader, city slicker, food fixer, French kisser, rule breaker, wine sipper and word scribbler. She loves her husband, kitties and chocolate.
 
Find out more about Teri at her website, and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.


Giveaway 
One lucky reader will win a copy of Dali Summer (your choice - print or eBook).  The winner will be chosen to Rafflecopter entry (see below).  Giveaway ends midnight, 5/21.  The winner will be notified by email and needs to respond within 48 hours or a new name will be drawn.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Friday, May 8, 2020

Dear Abby - Videos Abby Likes: Dachshunds Take a Bath


Dear Friends,

I hope you are having a good week!  The big news here is that I got a B-A-T-H.  (Yes, I know how to spell -- at least certain words, like T-R-E-A-T and B-E-D. Those are good words!)  I have never liked baths.  When I first came to live with my Momma I would scramble to get out of the tub and end up accidentally scratching Momma's arms (oops, sorry about that!).  It was unusually warm earlier this week and Momma decided I needed a bath.

She put me in the tub and the bath went smoothly.  It was easier than I remembered!  And on a hot day it actually felt good.  This was a first!

Here's the surprising part of the story -- that night when Momma was in the shower I peeked up over the edge of the tub because I have decided that maybe I don't hate baths as much as I thought.  (I didn't get back in the tub -- but I did think about it.)

I found a dachshund video to share with you.  It features two miniature dachshunds who LOVE baths.  One of them even swims in the bathtub.  Before you visit the link, I will let you know that it is not a good idea for dachshunds to go on stairs or to jump -- it can hurt their backs!  But the excitement of these little doxies in the bathtub is well worth a share.



I hope you enjoyed this video.  If you have a dog, does your pup enjoy baths?

Love,

Abby xoxoxo


Book Spotlight and Giveaway - The Abolitionist's Daughter by Diane C. McPhail

Book Synopsis
In her sweeping debut, Diane C. McPhail offers a powerful, profoundly emotional novel that explores a little-known aspect of Civil War history—Southern Abolitionists—and the timeless struggle to do right even amidst bitter conflict.

On a Mississippi morning in 1859, Emily Matthews begs her father to save a slave, Nathan, about to be auctioned away from his family. Judge Matthews is an abolitionist who runs an illegal school for his slaves, hoping to eventually set them free. One, a woman named Ginny, has become Emily’s companion and often her conscience—and understands all too well the hazards an educated slave must face. Yet even Ginny could not predict the tangled, tragic string of events set in motion as Nathan’s family arrives at the Matthews farm.

A young doctor, Charles Slate, tends to injured Nathan and begins to court Emily, finally persuading her to become his wife. But their union is disrupted by a fatal clash and a lie that will tear two families apart. As Civil War erupts, Emily, Ginny, and Emily’s stoic mother-in-law, Adeline, each face devastating losses. Emily—sheltered all her life—is especially unprepared for the hardships to come. Struggling to survive in this raw, shifting new world, Emily will discover untapped inner strength, an unlikely love, and the courage to confront deep, painful truths.

In the tradition of Cold Mountain, The Abolitionist’s Daughter eschews stereotypes of the Civil War South, instead weaving an intricate and unforgettable story of survival, loyalty, hope, and redemption.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

Author Bio
Diane C. McPhail is an artist, writer, and minister. In addition to holding an M.F.A., an M.A., and D.Min., she has studied at the University of Iowa distance learning and the Yale Writers’ Workshop, among others. Diane is a member of North Carolina Writers’ Network and the Historical Novel Society. She lives in Highlands, North Carolina, with her husband, and her dog, Pepper.

 

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest | Instagram


Giveaway
During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of The Abolitionist's Daughter! To enter, please use the Gleam form below. 

Giveaway Rules 
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on May 22nd. You must be 18 or older to enter. 
– Paperback giveaway is open to the US only. 
– Only one entry per household. 
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion. 
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.  

Abolitionist's Daughter 



Book Review and Giveaway - The Lost Lieutenant by Erica Vetsch

My Review
The Lost Lieutenant is set in Regency period England (1813).  It is the story of Evan Eldridge, a war hero who ends up an Earl ... married to a woman he likes but barely knows, Diana Seaton. Their story is complicated by their pasts -- she is raising her late sister's illegitimate baby, while he has lingering issues (similar to PTSD) from the war.  They also have a real threat in the present day to contend with.

I wanted to read this novel because I love the Regency period.  I found it intriguing that much of the novel focuses on a male character instead of the typical female protagonist found in books set in this era.

The Lost Lieutenant was a lovely, satisfying read!  I really liked the characters, particularly Evan, who was brave and so fundamentally decent.  I enjoyed the slowly developing relationship between Evan and Diana, and their restoration of an abandoned manor house.  Their relationship with Diana's infant nephew was also a sweet aspect of their story.

The book is well written with a great deal of historical detail.  The author does an especially good job with consistent usage of early 19th century language.

The character development in The Lost Lieutenant is intriguing, as we get to know Evan gradually over the span of the book.  I especially enjoyed his interest in rescuing abandoned war horses.

I recommend The Lost Lieutenant for fans of historical fiction, and especially for anyone who enjoys Regency period settings.

Book Synopsis
Evan Eldridge never meant to be a war hero--he just wanted to fight Napoleon for the future of his country. And he certainly didn't think that saving the life of a peer would mean being made the Earl of Whitelock. But when the life you save is dear to the Prince Regent, things can change in a hurry.

Now Evan has a new title, a manor house in shambles, and a stranger for a bride, all thrust upon him by a grateful ruler. What he doesn't have are all his memories. Traumatized as a result of his wounds and bravery on the battlefield, Evan knows there's something he can't quite remember. It's important, dangerous--and if he doesn't recall it in time, will jeopardize not only his marriage but someone's very life.

Readers who enjoy Julie Klassen, Carolyn Miller, and Kristi Ann Hunter will love diving into this brand-new Regency series filled with suspense, aristocratic struggles, and a firm foundation of faith.

Read an excerpt from Kregel by clicking here!
 
He's doing what he can to save the Prince Regent's life . . . but can he save his new marriage as well?

Author Bio
Erica Vetsch is a New York Times best-selling and ACFW Carol Award–winning author. She is a transplanted Kansan now living in Minnesota with her husband, who she claims is both her total opposite and soul mate.

Vetsch loves Jesus, history, romance, and sports. When she’s not writing fiction, she’s planning her next trip to a history museum and cheering on her Kansas Jayhawks and New Zealand All Blacks.

A self-described history geek, she has been planning her first research trip to England.

Learn more about Erica Vetsch and her books at www.ericavetsch.com. She can also be found on Facebook (@EricaVetschAuthor), Twitter (@EricaVetsch), Instagram (@EricaVetsch) and Pinterest (Erica Vetsch).

Giveaway

Friday, May 1, 2020

Dear Abby - Dachshund Memes

Hi Friends!

Just stopping by today to share a few dachshund memes.  These are some doxies that I found and shared at Doxieposse Pals on Facebook.  I am always looking for fun dachshund memes;  most of these came from Pinterest.  I hope you enjoy them.

I love this dachshund in socks!  (Dear Momma: this does not mean that I want socks though!)


I Dream of Weenie - like I Dream Of Jeannie!  (I might wear a costume like this.)


I am going to bet that the little dachshund can lift that weight.  (True doxie determination!)


This seems like a very good plan to me.


Aww! My very favorite because it is so true.


Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you a good weekend!

Love,

Abby xoxoxo

Book Review and Giveaway - Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire by Jen Hatmaker

My Review
Fierce, Free and Full of Fire is an inspirational self help book about finding (or rediscovering) your true self.

I wanted to read this book because the description was very appealing. I tend to be a people-pleaser and liked that this book addresses that.  I also liked the emphasis on choosing your own path.

Fierce, Free and Full of Fire is divided into five sections:

Who I Am
What I Need
What I Want
What I Believe
How I Connect

The book starts out with an instantly relateable sentence:  "I grew up around well-behaved women." The author then goes on to explain how being well behaved and people pleasing often subverts our own goals and plans.  She writes:

"Understanding and embracing who we are, how we've been created, is the launching pad for living a fearlessly genuine life, where we're no longer pretending or trying to be something other than what we are on the inside" (Kindle location 133).

She talks about labels that we all have -- sometimes from parents, or teachers, or even from ourselves in the past.  I found this a very eye opening discussion.  I think we all (and most especially women) have some of these labels.

I found the idea of seeking our authentic self and doing what we really want to - our goals, our plans - very exciting and liberating.

I especially loved some of her writing about dealing with other people.  "I Want To Connect Without Drama" was something I really related to and appreciated.

I recommend Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire to anyone who is looking for a fresh, unique Christian self help book about living an authentic life and choosing your own dream.

The author has a fresh, sassy voice.  This is my first book by Jen Hatfield, but she has a unique style that makes for a compelling, thoughtful, and fun read!

Book Synopsis
New York Times bestselling author Jen Hatmaker, with cheeky candor and fearlessness, guides readers to a deep dive into how they are wired and provides them with the tools to walk in that identity with freedom and guts.


Stuck in people-pleasing or fear, many women hide and pretend, then end up sidelined in their own lives. But what they want is to be brave, to claim every gift, dream, quirk, and emotion inside, to stop performing and start living.


Beloved New York Times bestselling author Jen Hatmaker understands the struggle to find firm footing in a culture that operates from stereotypes and often unreachable expectations. In this new book, she offers women encouragement, challenge, and humor as she helps them identify everything that makes them tick and gain the confidence to live it all out. She leads them through five self-reflective categories—who I am, what I need, what I want, what I believe, and how I connect—and helps them:

  • identify the exact ways they pretend, and learn instead how to be genuine at all times, in all ways, in all contexts;
  • be empowered to say yes and no without guilt;
  • learn to voice both their spiritual questions and convictions; and
  • opt out of drama and into healthy adult relationships.

With wry humor, earnest passion, and been-there insight, Jen calls women to the life-giving freedom of leaning into the identity, convictions, and community they’ve been given.



Purchase Links


Amazon |Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble Thomas Nelson


Author Bio
Jen Hatmaker is the author of the New York Times bestseller Of Mess and Moxie (plus twelve other books) and the host of the For the Love! with Jen Hatmaker podcast. She and her husband, Brandon, founded the Legacy Collective and also starred in the popular series My Big Family Renovation on HGTV. Jen is a mom to five, a sought-after speaker, and a delighted resident of Austin, Texas, where she and her family are helping keep Austin weird.

Connect with Jen


Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram


Giveaway
Two lucky winners will win a copy of Fierce, Free and Full of Fire. Enter through the Rafflecopter form (below). The giveaway ends at midnight May 7. Winners will be contacted by email and need to respond within 48 hours, or another winner will be chosen. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Book Spotlight and Giveaway - Seas the Day (A Seafood Capers Mystery) by Maggie Toussaint

Book Synopsis

Caterer River Holloway cooks like a dream and is known on Shell Island as a “finder” of things. Which is why a desperate mother begs River to track down her grown son, Chili Bolz, who’s vanished.


Deputy Lance Hamlyn can’t find the missing man, so he teams up with River. The missing person case boils over into something frightening when Chili’s mother falls victim to a brutal assault. Worse, her dying words incriminate River’s friends in both kidnapping and, now, murder. River soon finds herself caught in an unsavory recipe for disaster.


Despite catering events and the return of her absentee boyfriend, River finds the number of suspects growing longer than her food shopping list. Along the way she befriends a black cat who becomes her crime-solving partner. River must locate Chili and discover who killed his mother before her own goose is quite literally cooked.


Maggie Toussaint serves up a fun and captivating read in Seas the Day, the first in her Seafood Capers series.

Author Bio
Southern author Maggie Toussaint writes cozy and paranormal mysteries, romantic suspense, and dystopian fiction, with twenty fiction novels published. A three-time finalist for Georgia Author of the Year, she’s won three Silver Falchions, the Readers’ Choice, and the EPIC Awards. She’s past president of Mystery Writers of America-Southeast chapter and an officer of LowCountry Sisters In Crime. She lives in coastal Georgia, where secrets, heritage, and ancient oaks cast long shadows. Visit her at https://maggietoussaint.com/


Author Links
Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Goodreads | LinkedIn | Pinterest | Booklover’s BenchAmazon Author Central | Website | Bookbub


Purchase LinksAmazon

Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway