Monday, November 20, 2017

Mailbox Monday - November 20



Mailbox Monday is a meme started by Marcia of To Be Continued. Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. It now has a permanent home at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

Happy Thanksgiving week! Not sure what your plans are but mine involve cleaning, baking, and spending time with my family. I'm working today and have a class tomorrow morning, but I'm hoping to be off after after that until next week. Annual Christmas bazaar at church is slated for this coming Saturday from 9 to 3.

As far as reading materials go, I received a couple of great books for review and also picked up a resource I found at the Write Angles Conference I attended on Saturday.


Can a religious separatist and an opportunistic spy make it in the New World?
A brand new series for fans of all things related to history, romance, adventure, faith, and family trees.

Mary Elizabeth Chapman boards the Speedwell in 1620 as a Separatist seeking a better life in the New World. William Lytton embarks on the Mayflower as a carpenter looking for opportunities to succeed—and he may have found one when a man from the Virginia Company offers William a hefty sum to keep a stealth eye on company interests in the new colony. The season is far too late for good sailing and storms rage, but reaching land is no better as food is scarce and the people are weak. Will Mary Elizabeth survive to face the spring planting and unknown natives? Will William be branded a traitor and expelled?

Join the adventure as the Daughters of the Mayflower series begins with The Mayflower Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse.


The inimitable Faith Fairchild returns in a chilling New England whodunit, inspired by the best Agatha Christie mysteries and with hints of the timeless board game Clue.

For most of her adult life, resourceful caterer Faith Fairchild has called the sleepy Massachusetts village of Aleford home. While the native New Yorker has come to know the region well, she isn’t familiar with Havencrest, a privileged enclave, until the owner of Rowan House, a secluded sprawling Arts and Crafts mansion, calls her about catering a weekend house party.

Producer/director of a string of hit musicals, Max Dane—a Broadway legend—is throwing a lavish party to celebrate his seventieth birthday. At the house as they discuss the event, Faith’s client makes a startling confession. "I didn’t hire you for your cooking skills, fine as they may be, but for your sleuthing ability. You see, one of the guests wants to kill me."

Faith’s only clue is an ominous birthday gift the man received the week before—an empty casket sent anonymously containing a twenty-year-old Playbill from Max’s last, and only failed, production—Heaven or Hell. Consequently, Max has drawn his guest list for the party from the cast and crew. As the guests begin to arrive one by one, and an ice storm brews overhead, Faith must keep one eye on the menu and the other on her host to prevent his birthday bash from becoming his final curtain call.

Full of delectable recipes, brooding atmosphere, and Faith’s signature biting wit, The Body in the Casket is a delightful thriller that echoes the beloved mysteries of Agatha Christie and classic films such as Murder by Death and Deathtrap.


Americans have long regarded the freedom of travel a central tenet of citizenship. Yet, in the United States, freedom of movement has historically been a right reserved for whites. In this book, Elizabeth Stordeur Pryor shows that African Americans fought obstructions to their mobility over 100 years before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus. These were "colored travelers," activists who relied on steamships, stagecoaches, and railroads to expand their networks and to fight slavery and racism. They refused to ride in "Jim Crow" railroad cars, fought for the right to hold a U.S. passport (and citizenship), and during their transatlantic voyages, demonstrated their radical abolitionism. By focusing on the myriad strategies of black protest, including the assertions of gendered freedom and citizenship, this book tells the story of how the basic act of traveling emerged as a front line in the battle for African American equal rights before the Civil War.

Drawing on exhaustive research from U.S. and British newspapers, journals, narratives, and letters, as well as firsthand accounts of such figures as Frederick Douglass, Harriet Jacobs, and William Wells Brown, Pryor illustrates how, in the quest for citizenship, colored travelers constructed ideas about respectability and challenged racist ideologies that made black mobility a crime.

I hope you'll share your mailbox with us. Wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving.




Sunday, November 19, 2017

Book Review: When the Bishop Needs an Alibi by Vannetta Chapman

Bishop Henry Lapp, Emma Fisher, and more familiar faces return in When the Bishop Needs an Alibi, the second book in Vannetta Chapman's Amish Bishop Mystery series.

Henry and Emma find themselves in the middle of another mystery when he discovers the body of a young woman while visiting the Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge to witness the annual arrival of 20,000 sandhill cranes to the San Luis Valley of Colorado.

When Henry quickly becomes the primary murder suspect, it seems like God is calling him to use his special talent to help in the investigation. He realizes his involvement in discovering the truth could put those he cares about in the path of a dangerous killer who will stop at nothing to make sure Henry is framed for murder.

As much as I enjoyed the first book in this series, What the Bishop Saw, I loved this one more. Faith, friendship, and courage blend together to create an engaging story that pulls you in immediately. It's wonderful to watch Henry and Emma's relationship evolve in the second novel. In addition, the strong ties that bind this community together add a meaningful dynamic to the story. Chapman continues to fascinate me with her ability to weave an amazing story that keeps you riveted and also touches your heart.

I can't wait for Who the Bishop Knows, which is due out this spring. I highly recommend this series to lovers of Amish fiction and cozy mysteries.

Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Harvest House Publishers (September 1, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0736966498
ISBN-13: 978-0736966498

I received a copy of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Mailbox Monday - Nov 6



Mailbox Monday is a meme started by Marcia of To Be Continued. Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. It now has a permanent home at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

A busy week it was in this neck of the woods. Sold a house, enjoyed some trick or treaters, the dog and the Lil' Princess celebrated birthdays, and I am preparing for numerous closings coming up this month.

Nothing in my mailbox but I did pick up this short Deputy Tempe Crabtree story from one of my favorite authors--Marilyn Meredith.


When a body is discovered in the hills, Deputy Tempe Crabtree is called to the scene. The victim is Claude Forester who claims to be a reincarnated Native American medicine man. Several members of the local tribe have reason to dislike him, but who is responsible for his death?

You can pick up your copy at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0774QGQK1

What was in your mailbox? Hope you'll share.


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Is There a Middle Ground for Christians at Halloween?


A few years ago, I posted an article on Christian Children's Authors about how we celebrate Halloween. This is a holiday that can divide people of faith. My mother-in-law won't even call it Halloween. She calls it Trick or Treat Night. Admittedly, I'm not much into the gore and ghoulish aspects of the holiday, but I do enjoy this time of year and like to see all the neighborhood kids dressed up.

Today, I found an article from 2015 written by Dr. Benjamin L Corey titled, "A Reasonable Middle-Ground For Being A Christian At Halloween." I also found this article citing Bible verses that might be some basis for not celebrating. I'm curious what you think. Is there a middle ground for Christians on Halloween? Should we avoid celebrating the holiday in any way?

Monday, October 30, 2017

Mailbox Monday: Oct 30



Mailbox Monday is a meme started by Marcia of To Be Continued. Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. It now has a permanent home at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

My, oh my, what a day. Woke up to no power, phone, or internet. Lost a tree--thankfully into the woods and not the house. No school today and none tomorrow. At least the power is back on as of 9:15. Mother Nature sure has been giving everyone a beating lately.

Hope you had a nice mailbox. Mine was empty, but that's okay. I still have PLENTY to read.

Enjoy your week!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Book Review: A Simple Wish by Charlotte Hubbard (Giveaway)

We return to Willow Ridge in A Simple Wish by Charlotte Hubbard, the second book in her Simple Gifts series.

Having lived under her father's thumb too long, Loretta Riehl is determined to follow her own path in life. She decides to join Nora in her shop to sell her rugs and teach classes on rug making. She's also got a troubled heart. Drew Detweiler came to Willow Ridge under a cloud, but she can't deny her attraction to him. Will, her former fiancé, certainly isn't liking their growing closeness. When Drew sets out to discover the truth about Cornelius Riehl and his moods, he hopes to fulfill Loretta's wish to live in a peaceful, happy home again.

I simply can't say enough kind things about Charlotte's books. They draw you in right away and you can't help but push aside everything else to read them: her characters are so real; her settings are so beautifully described; you feel that sense of community right from the start. Perhaps the best part of picking up a book by Charlotte Hubbard is she has such a strong sense of genre and what her fan base enjoys that she delivers a great story every time.

With the Simple Gifts series she has created new successes and new challenges for the residents of Willow Ridge. While certainly a stand alone novel, the reader will get a rounder picture if they read the first book in the series before this one.

As I mentioned earlier in the week, Hallmark needs to make a movie out of some of these books. They really are superb.

Pick up a copy of A Simple Wish to find out what the people of Willow Ridge have been up to.

EXCERPT:

Grinning, Drew dropped down from the buggy. As he clasped Loretta’s hand and escorted her to the other side of his open vehicle, she wondered if he was leading her down a path riskier than Will’s and far more dangerous. A path more daring . . . and passionate. When Drew placed his hands on either side of her waist, he paused before lifting her up.

Loretta’s heart went wild. Drew’s sapphire eyes held secrets and intentions she couldn’t decipher, and he brought to mind a fox in the henhouse cornering his tasty prey. Effortlessly he lifted her into his buggy and then hopped in on the other side. “Hope I wasn’t interrupting anything important,” he said as he took up the lines. “If I’m not mistaken, Gingerich looked like a man come courting.”

Feeling downright wicked—yet too flummoxed to look over at Will on the porch—Loretta let out the breath she’d been holding. “You saved me from a really embarrassing scene,” she murmured as the buggy lurched into motion. “Once upon a time I loved Will with all my heart, but after Dat broke us up and he latched onto Molly so fast—well, I had second thoughts about his . . . sincerity. His true feelings for me. And now, well—”

Loretta faltered. The man beside her had lied to Molly about who he was when he’d gotten her in the family way, before poor deluded Will had married her. Everyone in town had officially forgiven Drew for deceiving Molly, and also for drugging his brother Asa with sleeping pills before he’d tried to marry Edith, but Drew was still a mysterious newcomer who played his cards close to his vest.

If Dat saw whom you were riding off with, he’d be even more upset than when he made you break up with Will.

It was true, yet Loretta didn’t regret what she was doing. For the first in a long time, she felt breathlessly alive.

Order Ebook

Order Print
Zebra
September 26, 2017
ISBN-13: 9781420138719
ISBN-10: 1420138715






Charlotte Hubbard is the acclaimed author of Amish romance and fiction that evokes simpler times and draws upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi. Faith and family, farming, and food preservation are hallmarks of her lifestyle—and the foundation of all her novels. A deacon, dedicated church musician and choir member, she loves to travel, read, try new recipes, and crochet. A longtime Missourian, Charlotte now lives in St. Paul, Minnesota, with her husband and their border collie, Vera. Please visit Charlotte online at www.CharlotteHubbard.com.

Charlotte Hubbard will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received a free copy of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in anyway. 



Monday, October 23, 2017

Mailbox Monday - October 23



Mailbox Monday is a meme started by Marcia of To Be Continued. Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. It now has a permanent home at the Mailbox Monday blog.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

This week I have three home inspections, but I am hoping for a slightly less hectic schedule than what it has been. Our week was filled with soccer, driving the Lil' Diva to work, real estate appointments, and a dead car. Thankfully it didn't cost us the farm to fix it.

My mailbox held this great graphic novel that arrived directly from the publisher.



Cici dreams of being a novelist. Her favorite subject: people, especially adults. She’s been watching them and taking notes. Everybody has one special secret, Cici figures, and if you want to write about people, you need to understand what’s hiding inside them. But now she’s discovered something truly strange: an old man who disappears into the forest every Sunday with huge pots of paint in all sorts of colors. What is he up to? Why does he look so sad when he comes back?

In a graphic novel interwoven with journal notes, scrapbook pieces, and doodles, Cici assembles clues about the odd and wonderful people she’s uncovered, even as she struggles to understand the mundane: her family and friends.

What did your mailbox hold? Here's hoping you have a blessed week.