Thursday, May 30, 2013

When a Secret Kills: A Review

For two books, readers have been wanting to meet Jillian and to find out why she ran away on graduation night, leaving her friends and her high school love with more questions than answers. Now she's back, determined to get to the bottom of what happened all those years ago. Will ex-boyfriend Colton be able to put his feelings aside when Jillian accuses his uncle of being the reason she left?
This is my favorite book in the series, mainly because the main storyline comes to a completion in a fast-paced, action-packed book three. I had to stay up way-too-late to finish because although Eason had been pointing to a certain bad guy for a while, there are a few twists and turns that will leave the reader on the edge of his/her seat, wanting to know what happens next.
I loved seeing the characters from the first two books, and I hope the author writes Blake's story soon.
Fans of Christian suspense will love this book, but I do recommend reading them in order.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013



Congrats to Michelle for winning Talon. This week, I'm giving away A Dangerous Stage, which is a great book. I can't wait to read the third one in the series!

To enter to win, leave a comment about a time you took the stage. I can't stand being on stage. I can do it, but it's hard. It's funny because being a former teacher and a current librarian, I am in front of people all the time....but that's in front of kids, not adults.

Be sure to leave  your email address.
I'll pick a winner next week. I can only ship to the US.


Monday, May 27, 2013

The Inner Circle: A Revew

Although I don't believe conspiracy theories, I do enjoy reading about them. I think that's one reason I like Brad Meltzer's books. In The Inner Circle, readers are introduced to Beecher, an archivist who spends his days looking at documents from the past. When he tries to show off for an old girlfriend, he gets pulled into today's action when he's uncovers a secret circle that does the bidding of the president.
Pulling characters (Nico) from a previous novel, Meltzer takes readers for a fast ride where it's unknown who is good and who is evil. I like the idea of uncovering secrets in documents from the past, and although I found Beecher a little boring, it would have been odd for an adrenaline junky to work in the archives.
The plots twists and turns enough to keep the reader guessing, and the only thing I wish had been was a faithful sidekick for Beecher. Instead of him having an ally, you never knew who was really for him and who was against him....even at the end.
There are many loose ends, so have the next book downloaded and ready to go when you finish this one.


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Author Facebook Page


My publisher emailed me a list of things to work on while waiting for my edits. One was to make an author Facebook page. So, I did.
If you'd like to keep up with me on Facebook, please like My Facebook Page 
I look forward to connecting with you there.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Congrats to Amada for winning last week's giveaway.

Today, I'm giving away Talon. which is fantastic. Keep in mind the one I'm giving away is one I read.

To enter to win, leave a comment about how you would share this book with others. (I got it free from Ronie to help promote, so I'd like the winner to let people know about it.)

I can only ship to the US. I'll pick a winner next week.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Talon: A Review

Aspen Courtland only wants to find her twin brother, Austin, who is dead according to military reports. Determined, she takes off to where he was last seen, joined by Austin's old partner, military dog Talon. Joining her is Dane, who has his own secrets to hide.

I love Aspen and Dane. They were authentic characters developed through action-packed scene after scene. I loved Aspen's naïve belief in people and Dane's tormented past. Austin was a mystery to me, even towards the end of the book. I hope he shows up in another book (hints are there).

Talon may have been my favorite character. She was broken and unprepared to return to action, but her loyalty and protectiveness was a great tribute to the dogs serving around the world.

The action was fast from beginning to end. Kendig writes with military level precision, putting the reader right in the heart of the action and taking them for an amazing ride. Fans of military thrillers will enjoy this book as much as I did. I can't wait to read book three!

I was given this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts are my own.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Test and ramblings....

So, I experimented with turning this blog into a website of sorts. Many thanks to Jessica for suggesting that and for leading me to Etsy, where I found a template for a lot cheaper than I was going to pay someone to design a website.

If you like this blog template, check out the Tinker B Designs page:

I need to quit looking because I keep finding more stuff I like. Anyway, she was super friendly and super fast at installing it here for me for a great price.

Another random comment--I finally mailed the last four winners their packages. YAY! I used to work right by a post office, so I would go every week or two. Now, it's not too close. So, I appreciate your patience. I do mail them media mail to keep costs down. Thanks to those of you who send me an email to let me know you got it.

And the final reason for this blog, and perhaps the most important to me but nobody else, is to see if my new signature shows up.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


As most of you know, I finished my first book a few months ago. I sent it to several agents and only heard back from one. She wanted to see a few revisions and asked me to resubmit, which I did.

After going to a workshop where several participants mentioned smaller publishers as an option, I targeted a couple small Christian publishing houses that don't require agents. I heard back a little over a week ago from Chalfont, asking to see the whole manuscript, which of course I sent right away.

Monday, I got the news that Chalfont House wanted to offer me a contract! I am so excited. Chalfont has published books for over a decade, but they just launched their fiction line (HopeSprings Books) in January.

I was waiting to post anything online until they received my signed contract, but I was thrilled to get this email in my inbox through the ACFW loop last night.

Isn't that awesome?
I am eager to get started on author things!
Here are a few random pictures of me signing the contract.

Thanks for all your encouragement through this process. I can't wait for people to meet Ellie.


Congrats to Michelle for winning Seaside Harmony. Since I received two, I'll give away the other copy another week. Today, I'm giving away a book that goes with Seaside....Sunflower Summer.

To enter to win, leave a comment about your summer plans. My plans are to save money to attend the ACFW conference and to finish my second book. I should get started today. :) (I have about 7,000 words written but a long way to go.)

I can only ship to the US. I'll pick a winner next week. Make sure you leave an email address.

Sorry I didn't post yesterday, but I got some HUGE news. (I'm posting a blog entry on the news right after this one, so check it out.)


Saturday, May 11, 2013

Paige Torn: A Review

Erynn Mangum is the only author I know who can write a great book without anything "big" happening. Paige is a twenty-something single girl who can't say no....whether it's doing more than what's required as a secretary, teaching the youth, or even folding the church bulletins for the week. Is she so busy serving God that she's  not spending any time with him?

The book takes us through a few months of Paige's life. While nothing major happens, this is a great book. The author has a knack for quick-witted dialogue and quirky situations that create a compelling story. Paige is an interesting character (although it would be nice if Mangum wrote a character who didn't like coffee---major trend with all her characters). The other characters are unique (more so than Paige). Layla is hilarious, and I find Tyler charming.

Overall, it's the start of a great series. As a long-time fan who has read all of Erynn's books, I'm eager to see what happens next. Paige Torn ends with a tease of what's to come that has me looking forward to October.

Monday, May 6, 2013


Congrats to Barb for winning Take a Chance on Me. Today I'm giving away Seaside Harmony, of which I somehow ended up with two copies.

To enter to win, leave a comment about where you feel peace. I'm not a typical beach person for sure. However, a little cottage next to the sea would be great I think. Nantucket is on my list of places to visit. We'll see if it lives up to the image I have in my head. Mountains also seem peaceful.

I can only ship to the US. I'll pick a winner next week.

Be sure to leave an email address.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

A Dangerous Stage: A Review

Out of prison for a crime she didn't commit and now working as a bodyguard, Tessa is hired to protect a contestant on a TV singing competition and his daughter, who have been targeted by a group rigging the results. The investigation forces Tessa to work with Charles, they guy who put her away for longer than expected and also the one she still loves. Can they work together to keep George and his daughter safe without losing their hearts?

I really liked the first book in this series, and this was a great follow-up. I loved the chemistry between Tessa and Charles that jumped off the page. All the characters, both new and returning, are wonderful, balancing the action with humor and family drama. There was great character growth, especially with Charles that I really liked.

The book starts and ends with action-packed scenes. Although I never really got the connection on why the results were rigged (I probably just missed it), I really enjoyed the book. Although the action was fun, the character development, especially the relationship between Tessa and her family, is the best part of the book. The foreshadowing of what's to come in book three have me excited to read the next book!

Fans of Christian action with a hint of romance fiction will enjoy this book. I do recommend reading them in order to get to know the characters.


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Wishing Tree: A Review

Ivy Marshall's life is unraveling. On the day her sister accepts a proposal on national TV is the same day Ivy finds out her husband cheated on her and loses her job. Disappointed in how her life has turned out, Ivy escapes to the past, where she was a girl in love who had hopes and dreams. When her sister asks her to create the wishing tree, a family wedding tradition, Ivy must come to terms with the boy she left behind (who is still in town and clearly not over Ivy) and the husband who is determined to win her back via Twitter. 

I enjoy Mary Beth Whalen's books because while the plot moves slowly, the characters are vivid and perfectly flawed. Ivy reacts to her husband's one-time affair with raw emotion and anger. I enjoyed seeing her deal with her pain from the present and the past and grow as a character.

My favorite character may have been the guy from Ivy's past, the one she broke up with to marry her husband. In fact, Ivy annoyed me when she flirted with him because he still had feelings for her and deserved better than a confused ex-girlfriend. 

Cheating is a hot topic, and people debate back and forth whether a person should take back a cheating spouse. Whalen may take some heat for how the book ends, but I think the ending was a solid and satisfied conclusion. 

Fans of Christian fiction, especially those who enjoy real-life circumstances with a glimmer of hope, will love this book.

I received this book in exchange for my review. My thoughts are my own.