Friday, May 22, 2015

SIDE BY SIDE - Jana Kelley - One Free Book

BIO: Jana Kelley is a Texan who hardly ever lives in Texas. Raised in Southeast Asia, Jana developed a love for cross-cultural living early in life. Her love for writing came soon after. Jana returned to Texas to attend East Texas Baptist University. She and her husband married a month after she graduated and by their second anniversary, they were living in a remote African town. After thirteen years living in Africa and the Middle East, Jana, her husband, and their three boys, moved to Southeast Asia where they currently live.

Welcome, Jana. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
Side By Side is my first fiction title. The character that is most like me was the character I had the hardest time writing. Unfortunately, she is one of the main characters! It was not until I could let go of her a little and let her be different from me that writing her character flowed more easily. So I guess the answer is that, at the beginning I wrote a lot of myself, but as I tweaked the manuscript, I wrote less of myself.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I used to live in a country that required an expensive permit to take personal videos of anything outside my home. I wanted a video of our neighborhood to show my family. I emptied a Kleenex box and put my camera inside. Then I cut a hole in the front of the box for the camera lens and I taped the box to my dashboard and drove through my neighborhood. It worked great, but I felt pretty quirky!

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
I wrote my first “book” when I was six years old, before I’d even learned to spell correctly. I had a notebook called “My Fan Book” (pronounced “fahn”, as in “fun”). I filled it with horrendously spelled poems and stories. I have written journals, poems, and stories steadily since then. In 2008 I sent a story to a small writing competition and won. That was the first time I realized perhaps I was writing stuff that other people would actually enjoy reading.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I like missionary biographies because of the challenges and cultures that the people face. I like historical fiction because that’s the only way I will remember history. I love travel books and books about women living in foreign countries because I also travel and live in other countries. A fiction or nonfiction book that is going to teach me about culture, countries, history, or people, while also entertaining me, is a book I will enjoy.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I do not lead as fast-paced a life as most of my friends in America. Why? Because I don’t live there! That’s one thing I love about living overseas. I have discovered that I feel more in control of my schedule in Asia and Africa than I do in America. I enjoy activities more fully when my life is not crammed with them. This is important enough to me that I actually say no to things that are good but not best and I’m becoming quite good at that! I find it helpful to ask the Lord what are the activities He wants me to be involved in each week, and I put those on my calendar. I try to stay true to those commitments and say no to things that conflict or take away from what I know to be the most important activities in each day.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
Side By Side has a lot of Arabic characters. I have always loved the name Halimah so that’s what I named the main character. For the other Arabic names I looked them up on the Internet and chose the names that I know would be common names for the country Side By Side is set in. The American names just came to me. I was not as attached to the American names as I was to the Arabic ones. One time I did a Facebook poll for the last name for my main character. That was a lot of fun!

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
I’m still a new author so Side By Side is the accomplishment I am most proud of in my writing life. But I have to say here that I can almost visibly see God’s hand in the whole process, so I honestly do not feel like this book is something that I can take credit for. Side By Side is a written version of God’s grace and faithfulness in my life.

If you were an animal, which one would you be and why?
I would be a cat. Cats have a fantastic, yet dry, sense of humor. They can be a quiet presence in the room, but can also let everyone know they are around if they choose to do so. They are smooth and silky and graceful. I’d be a short-haired cat though. I’d hate all that long hair to get caught on my rough tongue.

What is your favorite food?
I choose savory over sweet every time. My all-time favorite food is chips & salsa. I’ll eat it as a meal if I can. But if I have to actually choose a main dish, I’ll choose Lebanese food. Hummus and stuffed grape leaves are to die for!

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock and how did you overcome it?
My biggest problem was the lack of time. I was homeschooling when I began to write the first novel. The main thing that kept me going was a strong drive to accomplish the task. Where there is a will there is a way, right? So I asked my kids to give me one hour of alone time after school was over. Unfortunately for me, this is the one hour that would otherwise have been my nap time! So for at least one hour a day, I secluded myself in my bedroom with my laptop and I wrote. As I began to see progress, I got more inspired and my routine became easier.

Tell us about the featured book.
Are Muslims scary to you? Have you ever thought about what life is like for a Muslim woman? Side By Side is the story of two women who live in a Muslim country. One is Muslim and one is Christian. This novel is based on true events. The reality may surprise you!

Please give us the first page of the book.
“You’re moving to . . . Sudan?”

“Yes, Mom. Sudan.” Mia put the last dinner plate in the dishwasher and then joined her mother at the kitchen table.

“I’ve heard they have a lot of orphanages.” Her mother’s cheery voice squeaked a little higher than usual, as if she were forcing the words out.

“That’s South Sudan. North Sudan is a different country altogether.” Mia willed her voice to remain calm. She had to be patient. This news was a lot for her parents to take in.

“And you say you’ll live in . . . Khartoum?”

“Yes. Khartoum. That’s the capital city.” Mia wondered how Michael was doing with her father in the living room. She absently twisted a blonde curl between her fingers and looked at her mother’s strained face.

“That can’t be right, honey. I’ve read about Khartoum in the news. That’s where the terrorists are. It’s a dangerous place. Ask Michael again. Maybe you misunderstood.”

“Mom, Michael and I made this decision together. I don’t need to check with him. He will be working as the project manager at the head office in Khartoum as well as in the displacement camps just outside of the city. A lot of families who had to escape war-torn areas in Sudan moved to Khartoum. They live in these camps as refugees.”

“Tell me again why it has to be Sudan.”

Mia had to hand it to her mom for at least trying to understand. “Kellar Hope Foundation is an organization that helps families all over the world. Sudan is just one of them.”

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I love to connect with readers! You can find me at www.JanaKelley.com From there you can connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, email, and you can get information on Side By Side and my other books.

Thank you, Jana, for sharing your new novel with me and my blog readers. I have a number of close friends who are missionaries is various foreign countries, so I will love reading Side by Side. I’ve bee privileged to go on over a dozen short-term mission trips into Central America.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Side By Side - Christianbook.com
Side by Side, a Novel - Amazon
Side by Side, A Novel - Kindle


Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Thursday, May 21, 2015

DOUBLE CROSS - DiAnn Mills - One Free Book

Welcome back, DiAnn. Lets do some fun questions first. What song most closely resembles your life?
Oceans (Where Feet May Fail) by Hillsong
The words touch me as though the song were written for and about me.

Do you have a favorite Bible verse? And why is it a favorite?
Jeremiah 20:9. I like the NIV version the best: But if I say, I will not mention his word or speak anymore in his name, his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.

The words of Jeremiah inspire me to live and breathe every aspect of God living in me.

What is the one thing you wish you could go back and change in your life?
To understand the value of my relationship to God. Hold fast and never let go. Like all of             us, I made mistakes because I took my focus off Him.

What is the most important characteristic for a good friend to have?
Integrity. I didnt even have to think about this question!

What extracurricular activities did you participate in when you were in school?
Can I remember that far back? :)
1. Latin club (I know boring but I loved it.)
2. Choir
3. Band - I was a majorette.

I could see you as a majorette. What is your favorite movie of all times?
Gone with the Wind - The characterization moves me each time I view it. All the characters were uniquely motivated.

Ive read the book several times over the year, and I own the DVD of the movie. Its been a favorite of mine, too. Tell us about why you wrote this book.
I wanted to show how strong characters reacted to a scam against the elderly who suffered from Alzheimer's. My heroine is an FBI agent, and my hero is a police officer. Both were motivated to end the scam and bring the ones responsible to justice.

As a side note: those who deal with the struggles of Alzheimers, the caregiver and the victim, are caught up in a downward spiral. I wanted their voices heard.

Please give us the first page of the book.
Prologue
Special Agent Laurel Evertson had done everything required of her and more to gain Morton Wilmingtons affections. The gaudy diamond on her left hand proved it. She was prepared to end her undercover work tonight and walk away from this despicable role. All she had to do was find the flash drive that would send her fiancé to prison for life.

Morton reached into his closet and pulled out designer pants, shirt, and a sports jacket. Babe, Im taking a shower. Thought wed grab dinner downtown before the play.

Perfect. Im ready. So looking forward to tonight. She despised the lies and the counterfeit love.

What are you going to do, read here?

I am. A new romance novel. She pointed to a window seat that offered a scenic view of his condos pool, bathed in late summer afternoon sun.

He chuckled, his deep-blue eyes smoldering. As long as Im your main man.

None other. She kissed him lightly. Im turning on a little Andrea Bocelli to put me in the mood.

For what?

The book, the play, dinner, and us.

Another reason why I love you. Even if you did beat me last night in Monopoly. He disappeared into the shower.

The moment the sound of water met her ears, she confirmed his location. Four times shed found herself alone in his condo and attempted to access his safe, but each time shed failed to hack into his computer, where he stored the safe combination that changed daily. Today she knew his password, and she quickly located the code on his laptop.

She placed the novel on the bed and removed a framed picture of a tank at Fort Knox from the wall to reveal the safe. Odd for a bedroom, but Morton had served four years in the Army.
Probably the only thing he could be proud of. She rested the picture against the nightstand while the digital combination bannered across her mind. Gripping her right fingers into her palm to steady herself, she pressed in the code, hoping Andrea Bocellis tenor voice drowned out the low click. If she was wrong, the alarm would blare throughout the condo, bringing Morton out of the shower along with his bodyguard from the kitchen.

Big business had made him one of the most powerful men in the country and certainly in Texas. Murder, money laundering, and organized crime were his best friendslegitimacy his enemy. But hed made one mistake, exposing it all on a flash drive. Hed bragged where it was hidden one night after drinking too much. It had taken her months to locate the safe and figure out how to gain access.

Was she any better than he, using another person for her own agenda? She shook off the thought with her commitment to stop Wilmington from breaking the law.

She secured the flash drive and replaced the picture. Stealing her way to the bathroom door, she confirmed Morton was still showering. His laptop sat on his desk as though beckoning her to prove the FBIs suspicions. She inserted the drive. Her heart pounded, ached.

Babe, had an idea for our honeymoon, he called from the bathroom.

Great. She breathed deeply to calm her scattered nerves. Are you going to tell me?

Maybe.

You know I love surprises. The details on the computer rose like rich cream . . . names, places, bank accounts. She ejected the device and slipped it into her shoe.

I sent a check to MD Anderson this morning, he said.

For the kids or in general?

The kids. The fund-raiser we attended hit me hard.

But youd killed men who got in your way. They stole my heart too. She texted the FBI and Jesse, her partner, providing the code to the condos alarm system and telling them where the armed bodyguard was located. Do you need anything?

Thats a loaded offer but Im good.
He wouldnt be so good once the FBI arrived for the takedown. What time are we leaving? She moved back to the window seat and opened her novel.

He stepped from the bathroom, a towel wrapped around his waist. Is six okay?

She smiled. Sure. Finally this charade would be over.

While discussing what Wilmington wanted to do for the children at MD Anderson, he dressed and she touched up her makeup. Her hands trembled.

Are you okay? he said. Youre shaking.

Just hungry. She hated this game, made her feel as dirty as Morton.

Want a glass of orange juice?

Youre so sweet. Thanks, Id love it.

He left the room and went down the hall to the kitchen. She checked her phone.

W r n place. Now

With a confident breath, she pulled her Glock from her purse and trailed after Wilmington.

How can readers find you on the Internet?

Thank you, DiAnn, for sharing this new book with us. 

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Double Cross - Christianbook.com
Double Cross (FBI: Houston) - Amazon
Double Cross (FBI: Houston Book 2) - Kindle


Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

SINS OF THE MOTHERS - Caryl McAdoo - One Free Book

Dear Readers, I met fellow Texas author Caryl McAdoo at an American Christian Fiction Writers national conference several years ago in another state. The first book in her A Texas Romance series had just released, and I scheduled her with an interview on this blog. Her novels really have a Texas historical feel about them. I’ve loved them all.

I’m almost finished reading Sins of the Mothers. This story travels from Texas to California and New York. I haven’t gotten to the New York part yet. The characters are strong people, who make serious mistakes that affect many others. The story contains many layers of plotting and characters that won’t let go of your heart.

Welcome back, Caryl. What are some of the spiritual themes you like to write about?
God’s unfailing love, trusting God which results in no fear or worry; repentance and salvation no matter how bad you’ve been; walking in obedience, modesty, mercy, and redemption; holiness, the power of prayer; how He will lead and guide us; that His promises and miracles are still for us today if only we’ll believe and not doubt—and sometimes, even if we do. Grace and mercy. I could go on and on and on. I pray my story gives God glory. J

What other books of yours are coming out soon?
In July, a Christian contemporary novel titled ONE AND DONE, book three of the Red River Romance series will be released during baseball’s All Star Break as it has a Texas Rangers backdrop. TOKEN OF THE COVENANT—likely to be renamed REPLENISH THE EARTH—volume three of my Biblical fiction series The Generations debuts in August. September’s launch is the next in the historical Texas Romance series, book five, DAUGHTERS OF THE HEART. Then in October, my fourth contemporary in the Red River Romances ACQUIRING A WIFE comes, and last for 2015, but not least, CHILDREN OF EBER, volume four of The Generations series. That’s a total of ten new releases in 2015. But in 2016, I’m only planning six! All, of course, God willing.

If you could spend an evening with one contemporary person (not a family member of yours), who would it be and why?
Without thought or hesitation, Benjamin Netanyahu! I would love to sit and visit with such a statesman. Share my love for Israel and discuss Yahshuah Ha Mashiach’s (Jesus the Messiah) imminent return.

What historical person would you like to meet (besides Jesus) and why?
King David has always been my favorite Biblical hero, and I’d pick him!  He loved God from his youth, was such a sinner, discouraged by his failings, a singer of God’s praise, a worshipper, a dancer, repentant, and in his later years, he sinned no more. We have so much in common. I think we’d get along great! I could sing harmony to his melody, and we’d praise and worship Him Who sits on the Throne together.

How can you encourage authors who have been receiving only rejections from publishers?
Dig in to learn more about your craft, deep point of view, breaks and beats and tags, scene and sequel, natural dialogue, how to show not tell and be active rather than passive. Make your story better! God will help you! He will lead you and guide you. Find a critique group! I would never have been published but for God leading me to the DFW Writers’ Workshop.

But if you know He wants you to write, never give up. Refuse to be discouraged, knowing deep in your knower that His perfect time has not yet come, but for everything under the sun, there is a time! Keep at it with open ears to His Words.

If traditional publishers continue to reject your work, pray about going Indie. Sometimes, a novel isn’t rejected because it isn’t a great story or even that it isn’t well written. Many turned down are only unusual stories that don’t fit their formulas. This is the time for Indies! But before you do take such a route, pray and make certain your work is ready and the best it can be.

Tell us about the featured book.
Set in 1851 through 1853, SINS OF THE MOTHERS is definitely a story of redemption. Misguided by blind love, my young heroine, Mary Rachel Buckmeyer (Sue and Henry’s oldest daughter) defies her father to wed Caleb Wheeler then flees with her new husband to San Francisco to partner with his cousin in a mercantile. The gold miners need everything! But nothing is as planned, and she finds herself in dire straits. It is book four in the Texas Romance series, and while each book stands alone, I believe readers will enjoy each one more if read in sequence.

Please give us the first page of the book for my readers.
 With everyone on the porch for the clan’s send-off, Mary Rachel decided for sure and for certain and could wait no longer. She took a deep breath and hugged his neck.

 “Daddy, I’m sorry. I really am, but I can’t go. No, I mean I’m not going. I can’t leave. I won’t.”

He leaned back and stared at her for too long a minute, his face suddenly stone cold. “What did you just say?”

She grimaced, then steam rose to her cheeks. He softened just like he always had when her mother turned on him. Saying it aloud made it all the more real, strengthened her resolve.

“I cannot be gone for seven months. I thought for a while maybe I could, but I can’t, Daddy.”

Her new mother stepped close. “But Mary Rachel, why? It’s the trip of a lifetime. I promise you’ll adore Europe.”

“It’s just Mary now, please. No Rachel. That’s what Caleb calls me.”

His voice lowered to almost a whisper; he slipped some of the steel back on. “So. This is about that boy.”

“He’s a man, Daddy, and you know it. We love each other.”

“If he loves you, Baby, then he’ll wait. It’s only seven months. He should be thrilled you have this opportunity to travel Europe.”

“Well, I’ve made my decision, and I’m not going.”

“We’ve booked your passage.”

“I know, and I’m sorry. I should have told you sooner, but I knew you wouldn’t be happy about my decision.” She looked off at the tree line, hating the disappointment in his eyes, but that was a coward’s way. She faced him again. “Like I said, I thought I could. Anyway, let Bonnie take my place.”

From somewhere, her youngest sister burst into the middle. “Can I, Daddy? Please take me! I’ll be good. Mama, tell him how good I’ll be.” She turned those doe eyes on him. “Pleeeease.”

How can readers find you on the Internet?

Sins of the Mothers - http://tinyurl.com/SinsOfMothers

Website - http://www.CarylMcAdoo.com  (All First Chapters are offered here)

Newsletter - http://carylmcadoo.com/sign-up-to-the-caryler/ (Get FREE books for subscribing!)

Reviewer? - http://carylmcadoo.com/christian-evaluaters/  (Join Caryl’s Street Team!)







Pinterest - http://www.pinterest.com/CarylMcAdoo

Thank you, Caryl, for sharing this new book with me and my blog readers. I know they'll love it as much as I do.

Readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s the link:

Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

LIVING JOYFULLY FREE DEVOTIONAL - Lisa Buffaloe - One Free Book

Dear Readers, Lisa Buffaloe is a dear friend. She lived near me a long time and attended the critique group that meets in my home. Then the Lord moved her family to another state, so I praise the Lord for the Internet. She writes both fiction and nonfiction. She has a ministering heart. She touches a multitude of lives through her blog. You’ll want to check it out as well as her books.

Welcome back, Lisa. What would you like for our readers to know about you personally?
My favorite subject is sharing about God. I’ve been through many difficult journeys, I have scars, life wasn’t always pretty, downright ugly and painful and times, yet God was there to heal, redeem, and restore.

Tell us about your family.
I’m married to a wonderful man and mom to our son who is a new college graduate.

Have you written other nonfiction books?
Yes, I’ve also written Living Joyfully Free Devotional Volume 2, Unfailing Treasures Devotional, and No Wound Too Deep For the Deep Love of Christ. I also have two novels, Nadia’s Hope, Prodigal Nights, and a novella, Grace for the Char-Baked.

Do you have any other books in the works right now?
Yes, I’m working on another devotional, a non-fiction book, and a new fiction project.

What kinds of hobbies and leisure activities do you enjoy?
I love gardening and exploring nature with my sweet husband. My favorite thing is to sit by a river and clean out any debris that has been stuck. There is something so wonderful about watching the water flow free, which reminds me of the beauty of God’s restoration.

Why did you write the featured book?
The world is a hurting place and the news bombards with negative images and horrific reports. People are in need of hope. Living Joyfully Free Devotional is written to help readers find truth from God’s word to give a solid foundation to live, joyfully free regardless of the bad news and their own situations. Living Joyfully Free points to The One who is Good News.

What do you want the reader to take away from the book?
Each devotion is written to hopefully bring the reader closer to The One who is joy and freedom – Jesus. Life isn’t easy; however God will help us live, joyfully, free in spite of the messiness of life.

Is there anything you’d like to tell my readers about you or your book?
The format for the book is written to give the reader a story with hope and/or a point to ponder to allow them time to reflect on God’s goodness, mercy, truth, and love. I sure don’t have life figured out, don’t know everything there is to know about God, but I do know God is a good God who longs for a relationship with each of us. And His loving heart is looking for those who will welcome Him into their heart.  

That is so true, Lisa. Where on the Internet can the readers find you?
I’m also on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.

Thank you, Lisa, for sharing this book with me and my readers.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
Living Joyfully Free Devotional - Christianbook.com
Living Joyfully Free Devotional - Amazon
Living Joyfully Free Devotional - Kindle



Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Monday, May 18, 2015

IN FIREFLY VALLEY - Amanda Cabot - One Free Copy of AT BLUEBONNET LAKE

Bio: Amanda Cabot is the bestselling author of more than thirty novels including the Texas Dreams trilogy, the Westward Winds series, and Christmas Roses. A former director of Information Technology, she has written everything from technical books and articles for IT professionals to mysteries for teenagers and romances for all ages. Amanda is delighted to now be a fulltime writer of Christian romances, living happily ever after with her husband in Wyoming

Welcome back, Amanda. God has really been moving in your writing life. What do you see on the horizon?
A beautiful sunrise. Oh, wait … you didn’t mean a literal horizon. What’s on the immediate horizon for writing is another historical novella. The Fourth of July Bride is part of the 12 Brides of Summer series and will be released in e-book format on July 1. This fall, my Christmas Star Bride novella, which was released in e-book format last December, will be included in a deluxe print edition with the other eleven 12 Brides of Christmas stories. And that will be followed by another contemporary romance next February. On Lone Star Trail is the third in the Texas Crossroads series and continues the story of Rainbow’s End and the people who’ve turned it from a rundown resort into a successful establishment.

Tell us a little about your family.
When people ask why I write romance, the answer is simple: because of my husband. God brought him into my life at exactly the right time. I was a junior in high school, terribly disappointed because my dream of becoming a foreign exchange student wasn’t coming true, when I met him. Now I think back to that March so many years ago and realize that God answered my prayers in ways I could never have imagined. He didn’t give me the year abroad when I wanted it. Instead He gave me what I needed at that time: a man to love, a man whose love made me believe in happily-ever-after. But God wasn’t finished. Soon after my husband and I were married, He gave us the opportunity to live abroad, compliments of the US Army. Never doubt that God answers prayers – every prayer – and that both His answers and His timing are perfect.

Has your writing changed your reading habits? If so, how?
The biggest change is that I’ve become a very critical reader. I no longer have much patience for stories that don’t hook me in the first few pages, and I have no – zero! – patience for poor grammar, punctuation, and spelling.

What are you working on right now?
I’ve just finished the first edits for On Lone Star Trail, the third of the Texas Crossroads books. Like the first two, it takes place at Rainbow’s End and features characters who are at crossroads in their lives. Famous pianist Gillian Hodge’s career is destroyed when her hand is crushed in a motorcycle accident, so if there’s one thing she never wants to see again, it’s a man on a motorcycle. You can guess what happens. She’s on her way to Rainbow’s End when a sudden thunderstorm causes a motorcycle to hydroplane and crash in front of her. On Lone Star Trail will be available in February 2016.

What outside interests do you have?
You won’t be surprised that some of my interests are writing-related. I lead a group of Christian fiction writers in northern Colorado and spend a fair amount of time mentoring them. But when I step away from the computer, I love traveling with my husband. We’ve always enjoyed exploring new places together, and ever since I started my “Wednesday in Wyoming” blogs, we’ve had a focus for our travels. It’s so much fun to visit some of the lesser-known parts of Wyoming and share pictures with readers.

How do you choose your settings for each book?
Since I’ve already told you that I love traveling, it won’t be much of a surprise that I find settings when I travel. I fell in love with the Texas Hill Country the first time I saw it, so when I was choosing the setting for both the Texas Dreams historical trilogy and Texas Crossroads, my current contemporary series, that was the first place that came to mind. Similarly, when my editor asked me to set a series in Wyoming, the location that popped into my mind immediately was Fort Laramie. The first trip my husband and I took after we moved to Cheyenne was to Fort Laramie, and though I hadn’t expected anything more than a day away from unpacking, I discovered a place that fired my imagination and simply demanded to be the setting for a book.

If you could spend an evening with one historical person, who would it be and why?
Oh, what a hard question to answer! There are so many fascinating people I’d like to meet, but if I could only choose one, it would be Abraham Lincoln. I’d love to talk to him about the challenges he faced as President during the Civil War and how he managed to keep his sense of humor while he led the country through one of its most turbulent eras.

What is the one thing you wish you had known before you started writing novels?
How long the whole process takes. I hadn’t realized just how much effort went into editing and that cover design was such a time-consuming step of the process. And then there’s the advance time needed for marketing. Now I understand why publishers want a manuscript a full year before the book will be released. They need that time to get everything ready so that when the book is actually ready for readers, readers will be ready for it.

What new lessons is the Lord teaching you right now?
Patience. Without a doubt, patience. It’s not a new lesson, but it’s one that I’m still learning. So many things move slowly in the publishing world, and I’m not by nature a patient person, so learning to wait for His plan to be clear isn’t the easiest thing for me.

What are the three best things you can tell other authors to do to be successful?
The first is to read extensively in the genre you want to write. That’s the best way to learn what a publisher is buying. Secondly, join a writer’s group. ACFW is wonderful for writers in the Christian marketplace, and Romance Writers of America is excellent for anyone interested in writing romance. A writer’s group provides support, networking, and so many other resources to the aspiring writer that I can’t over emphasize the importance of joining one. And lastly, never give up. Rejection is a fact of life. I won’t sugarcoat it: rejection hurts. But if you let it defeat you, if you stop sending out your manuscript just because it was rejected, you’ll never be published. Believe in your book and in yourself. Oh … that was four pieces of advice. Sorry! 

Four is just fine. Tell us about the featured book.
I’m always challenged to tell a story in just a couple paragraphs, so why don’t I simply share the back cover copy with you?

She’s lost her dream job—but has she found the man of her dreams?

Devastated by a downsizing, Marisa St. George has no choice but to return to the small Texas town where she grew up. Though it means a giant step backward, she accepts a position as business manager at the struggling Rainbow’s End resort. The only silver lining: Blake Kendall, a new guest who might make her believe in love at first sight. But will Marisa’s dreams of happily-ever-after be turned upside down when she discovers Blake’s real identity?

This warm and witty story of dreams deferred and mistaken identity will have you believing in second chances.

Please give us the first page of the book.
It wasn’t the homecoming of her dreams. When she’d pictured this moment, Marisa St. George had imagined herself riding in a shiny new Lexus. She’d be wearing a designer dress and sporting an impressive diamond on her left hand, while her tall, dark, and handsome husband smiled at her as if she were the most beautiful woman in the world. Instead she was driving an ordinary white sedan with more than its share of dents and a loud rattle that the previous owner had assured her wasn’t serious. Her clothes were as ordinary as the car, and the diamond ring and doting husband were as much a figment of her imagination as the luxury car and expensive clothing.

The car clanked again, reminding Marisa she was no longer a rising star at a prestigious Atlanta accounting firm but was back in the town she’d been so eager to flee and headed for a job that was definitely not part of her career plan.

Think of something positive, she admonished herself. She glanced at the sign marking the entrance to town and nodded. It still said “Welcome to Dupree, the Heart of the Hills,” reminding passing motorists that they were in Texas’s famed Hill Country, but the sagging wooden post that had turned it into a Texas version of the Leaning Tower of Pisa had been replaced by two perfectly straight shiny metal poles. The sign itself was freshly painted, a nice improvement over the faded and peeling greeting Marisa had seen the last time she’d been here.

Maybe it wasn’t just wishful thinking. Maybe Mom and Lauren were right when they said Dupree was changing. Marisa hoped that was the case. The town needed a boost, and so did her mother and her best friend. Being with them again was the one good thing to come out of all that had happened this year.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I love hearing from readers and encourage them to email me and to sign up for my online newsletter. My social media links are:


Thank you, Amanda, for sharing this new book with us. By the way, you look very pretty in pink.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
In Firefly Valley  -  Christianbook.com
In Firefly Valley: A Novel (Texas Crossroads) - Amazon
In Firefly Valley (Texas Crossroads Book #2): A Novel - Kindle



Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Sunday, May 17, 2015

WINNERS!!!!!

Minabucket (VA) is the winner of  Like a Love Song by Camille Eide

Deanna (PA) is the winner of Sword of Forgiveness by Debbie Lynne Costello. 

Cindy W (IN) is the winner of Echoes From the Past by June Foster.

Judy (LA) is the winner of Year of Jubilee by Peggy Trotter.

Tammy (TX) is the winner of RX: Murder by Richard L Mabry, MD.

If you won a book and you like it, consider giving the author the courtesy of writing a review on Goodreads, Amazon.com, Christianbooks.com, Barnes and Noble, or other Internet sites. 

Also, tell your friends about the book ... and this blog. Thank you.

Congratulations
, everyone. If you won a print book, send me your mailing address:
Click the Contact Me link at the top of the blog, and send me an Email.


If you won an ebook, just let me know what email address it should be sent to.

When you contact me, please give the title of the book you won, so I won't have to look it up.


Remember, you have 4 weeks to claim your book.

Friday, May 15, 2015

RESERVATIONS FOR TWO - Hillary Manton Lodge - One Free Book

Welcome back, Hillary. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I like to write the sorts of books I prefer to read – fiction, for starters, but also stories of women navigating their lives, sorting out issues of faith and family, and eating really great food.

Besides when you came to know the Lord, what is the happiest day in your life?
Marrying my husband was pretty great. I was anxious all day, getting ready and doing the photos, but the minute I walked down the aisle and saw Danny on the other end, my brain flipped and I loved every second. My favorite people were there, and Danny was there, and I had a really great dress on, and we were getting married while listening to our favorite music – such a wonderful day.

How has being published changed your life?
So many ways, but one of my favorites is how it’s connected me to authors all over the country. My husband and I travel quite a lot, and it’s fun knowing that wherever his job – or mine – sends us, there’s often another author in that area to connect with over coffee. 

What are you reading right now?
I’m reading the Advanced Readers Copy for Carla Laureano’s new novel London Tides – so ready to make a trip to Scotland!

What would be your dream vacation?
A tour of European castles, preferably spread over a couple of months.

How do you choose your settings for each book?
The setting depends on the book. In my first two novels, I needed a place in Oregon where you could, conceivably, find an Amish population. I love setting stories in Oregon because it’s been my home for most of my life, so I can really allow the characters to exist in their surroundings. With the Two Blue Doors Series, I knew that I wanted to have a story set in a thriving restaurant scene – I never considered setting it anywhere but Portland.

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
Anne Lamott – I love the way she looks at life, faith, and writing.

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Photography and cooking, though the cooking has been less of a hobby and more of a job while writing the Two Blue Doors books. I’ve done a lot of the promotional graphic design for the series, which I’ve enjoyed. I like to make pretty things – whether it’s using a computer, knitting needles, or jewelry pliers.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
Recognizing writer’s block when it’s happening can be hard for me. I’ll be struggling without realizing how hard I’m struggling. Once I figure it out, I can step away and untangle whatever’s giving me pause, usually a sticky plot point or getting to a section that needs to be outlined in better detail.

What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Place a high value on self-care. It’s easy, when you’re on contract, to throw everything into each book. But writing is sneakily tough, emotionally, physically, and often spiritually. It’s important to exercise, get fresh air, see friends, to eat nutritiously. It can be hard to leave your writing hobbit hole behind, but keeping your body healthy will keep your mind limber and the ideas flowing.

Tell us about the featured book.
Reservations for Two is the continuing story of Juliette D’Alisa, food writer turned restaurant manager. It picks up seamlessly where the first book leaves off – Juliette’s visiting the family chateau in Provence, trying to gather clues about her grandmother by exploring the house and interviewing her French family. She succeeds in uncovering letters between her grandmother and great-aunt written on the eve of the Nazi Occupation. While she finds answers, Juliette also finds new questions.

And one of those is how to make a long-distance relationship with Neil McLaren work in real life. Her life in Portland has its own challenges – her mom is sick and she’s got a restaurant to open. Neil and his research live in Memphis. Juliette and Neil love each other, but have difficulty making it work when they’re separated by both distance and culture. They have to figure out if it’s a love that they could rearrange their lives to maintain, or simply a chapter in their personal histories.

Of the books I’ve written, Reservations for Two has certainly been the most challenging. But I also feel it’s one of the most rewarding – I really love the way the characters grow and change.           

What is your current work in progress?
I’m working hard at the third book in the Two Blue Doors Series – haven’t finalized the title yet. It’s been amazing to start tying up all of the strings! I don’t want to say too much about it before readers have a chance to get their hands on book two, but I’m very excited about book three – it’s shaping up to be one of the most romantic books I’ve written.

Please give us the first page of the book.


How can readers find you on the Internet?
I can be found all over. Readers can visit my website at www.hillarymantonlodge.com to find my blog and connect with me via Facebook Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Thank you, Hillary, for sharing this new book with us.

Readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:

Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com

Thursday, May 14, 2015

THE LADY AND THE MOUNTAIN DOCTOR - Misty M Beller - One Free Book

Dear Readers and Authors, thank goodness, I'm finally getting much better. I will start uploading missed interviews and try to catch up soon. On Sunday, I'll post winners that have been missed.


I am reading this book right now, Dear Readers. I know you’ll love it as much as I do.

Welcome back, Misty. Why do you write the kind of books you do?
I tend to be a bit of a sentimentalist, so Historical Romance is perfect for me! My favorite period is between 1860 - 1880, when the cowboy days were really ramping up. I love the simpler life, where there's no rat race. Just hard work, plenty of alone time (can you tell I'm an introvert?), and a strong family unit. God is the central element in my life, so I want my books to naturally reflect Him.

How has being published changed your life?
It's wonderful to know in my heart that I'm doing what God planned for me. He continues to use my writing to bless others, which becomes a huge blessing for me!

What are you reading right now?
The Still of Night by Kristen Heitzmann. Kristen is one of my favorite authors, and I had the amazing opportunity to meet her at a writer's workshop earlier this year. What an amazing person!

What is your current work in progress?
I'm finishing up The Lady and the Mountain Fire, third in the Mountain Dreams Series. I had planned for this to be the last in the series, but I'm having so much fun with the characters! I guess I'll see where God leads. J

What would be your dream vacation?
I love to travel! I've been throughout the US, but never to Europe. I'd love to visit the old castles and estates in England or Ireland. And all that amazing historic architecture in Italy!

How do you choose your settings for each book?
Hmm… I usually have an idea of the type of setting I want (snowy mountains, Texas plains, etc). From there, I pick a state, then start my research and usually stumble upon something that makes me say "Ooooh, perfect!" For example, when I was beginning The Rancher Takes a Cook (scheduled to release June 26, 2015), I knew I wanted it to be a Texas ranch, somewhere in the middle part of the state (where it's not so much like a desert). I started doing some Google searches for "History of (insert name of Texas city). I stumbled across a letter that was written from someone in Seguin, Texas, in the year my story would begin. The description of Seguin in the letter sounded perfect! After researching the city a little more, I realized I'd found a goldmine (not literally).

If you could spend an evening with one person who is currently alive, who would it be and why?
This is a tough one. My first thought was my extended family members in California and Arizona. They're so dear, but I rarely have the opportunity to see them. My great-aunts and uncles are getting up in years, so I would love the opportunity to spend more time with them while I can. An evening would not be long enough though…

What are your hobbies, besides writing and reading?
Riding horses! I don't get to as often as I'd like, but it's such a stabilizing activity for me. I love sharing them with my daughters, too!

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
Making time for writing, and all the other activities that go along with it. I get up an hour early each morning to focus on writing, which helps a lot. I also try to spend a couple evenings a week after my daughters go to bed, and both afternoons on the weekend, if possible. It's hard, but important!

What advice would you give to a beginning author?
Oh wow. There are so many things that spring to mind! Some I've learned from wise writers. Some from my heavenly Father. And some from doing it the hard way. J If I had to narrow down my experience into advice, these are the three things I would share:
Seek:  Read books on craft. Join a writer's organization. Make friends with other writers and develop connections. Seek to learn everything you can about this wonderful world of fiction!
Work:  Writing takes so many hours of typing and plotting and editing. You may feel it will never end. But enjoy the journey, even the hard times. I heard a quote today that really hit home for me. "Happiness is counting your blessings for the good things where you are right now." We all need goals, but the joy truly can be in the journey.
Pray: Seek God's face and His direction for your writing. If you're in His will, He will bless the work. His blessings may be a different outcome than you expected, but I promise it will be wonderful!

Tell us about the featured book.
Miriam Bryant has always dreamed of leaving the never-ending work of her family's remote mountain ranch to travel abroad as a genteel lady. She's thrilled when the opportunity finally arises, but a gruesome hunting accident crushes her plans, leaving her stranded for weeks in a mining town. The single bright spot in her disappointment comes in the form of this mountain town's newest doctor…

Fresh out of medical school, Alex Donaghue is excited to join his brother's practice and prove himself in the mining town of Butte, in Montana Territory. But the tough conditions in the mines and the brutal winter are worse than he expected. Now a mysterious lung disease is killing patients he fought so hard to cure. The single bright spot in this dreary place comes in the form of their newest patient…

But when Miriam's life is threatened by the effects of a medical tragedy, will Alex have what it takes to save the woman he's come to love? Will Miriam ever find the place God created her for, or is it too late?

Please give us the first page of the book for my readers.
October 28, 1876
Bryant Ranch - Near Butte City, Montana Territory
Miriam Bryant plunged her knife through the deer's thick winter fur, just the way her brother taught her. Crimson saturated the snow underneath, and she clenched her eyes tight against the sight. An acrid odor permeated the air. Miriam spun away, inhaling deep gulps of air.

They needed food. God sent the buck. She repeated the words in her head, as her stomach slowly unclenched. Finally, she turned back toward the animal, knife clutched tight in her hand. Once again, she wished she could have let the deer bound away in freedom. But their meat supply was low, and she had to pull her weight on the ranch.

The whisper of air was her only warning before a force slammed into her back, knocking her forward. A scream rent the air, and she writhed away from the creature pressing her against the deer carcass. Cougar. Pain pierced her body. Over and over. Everywhere the cat touched left new agony.

Miriam fought hard. She rolled onto her side and tried to crawl, but the animal was all around her, growling and screaming. A blast of pain shot through her leg, and her body jerked hard. She reached for the source of the pain, and slammed her fists into the furry head, again and again.

I’m sure that opening will draw my readers in. How can readers find you on the Internet?

You can find me on my website, blog, Goodreads, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.

Thank you, Misty, for sharing this book with me and my readers.

Readers, here’s a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.
The Lady and the Mountain Doctor (Mountain Dreams Series Book 2)

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Goodreads, Google+, Feedblitz, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link:
Http://lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com