Unlock how to steal time. An Hour Unspent is exciting.

How do you steal an hour in today’s busy world? I am always complaining that I don’t have enough time as it is. Well, dear reader, the answer is in An Hour Unspent by Roseanna M White. Oh, you thought I had come up with an actual answer to this worldwide problem. All I can offer you as a solution is, switch off that mobile, breathe, pause, and allow yourself an hour break from the madness and be still. You deserve it.

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews An Hour Unspent by Roseanna M White

My Penny’s Worth

Did this book steal my imagination?

With sentences like “A smile appeared out of the web of wrinkles she called a face, revealing gums with only half their teeth” I’d say so. Again, Rosanna M White produces a book filled with beautiful descriptions.

There are pearls of wisdom

Barclay, finally we get to read his story. In this third book, the greatest thief in England comes to life. Stealing my heart. The head of the family, who is warm, flawed, and honest – yes a paradox, runs through the pages. His necessity to steal to put food on the table for his family may not have been what his father meant when giving this advice:

“There is no shame in working with your hands. In crafting or fixing. We use our minds; we use our words – if God did not want us to use our hands, too, He would not have given us such capable ones.”

However, Barclay uses all these gifts to help those living under the breadline. His heart is pure gold.

A great double act

Evelina, a polio victim, comes crashing into Barclay’s world. A young woman who wants to make a difference to those less fortunate. Hurt and betrayed, browbeaten and different. Evelina is determined, strong but vulnerable. A thorn in the side for Barclay at times. And her character works to drive the story forward. But will Barclay be able to steal and tame her?

The supporting characters are brilliant

Ms. White’s characters bring another level to the story. They are horrid snobs with typical attitudes of the day. I loved Barclay’s thoughts of Evelina’s mother.

“Perhaps the Admiralty could just unleash her on the unsuspecting Germans. The war would be over in hours.”

The winner’s cup, in my opinion, goes to Aunt Beatrice with her snide comments and brilliant timing. Oh how you just want to shake her, but instead you are left with an open mouth thinking, did she really say that?

He’d come to realize, how the Lord worked. At least for him. He didn’t remove the bad – He just lent him the strength to face it.” An Hour Unspent Click To Tweet
I had a few niggles

There wasn’t a lot I didn’t like, yes I am afraid there is a but – Sorry. But there were some minor mistakes with terminology that many authors make about railway terms. My hubby is always correcting people over this so it must have rubbed off onto me!

Another sorry, yes I know, I felt the book stretched reality a bit towards the end. Don’t get me wrong it all tied in well, though I am not sure the final chapters were plausible in 1915. Without a spoiler is it hard to be specific so dear reader, you will have to read the book and come back to me to have this conversation.

But don’t let these niggles put you off, I’ll just go and take something for them!

“When it came down to it, all you ever had forever was what you carried inside. Memories. Faith. Love.”

Would I recommend An Hour Unspent.

Yes. Getting to know Barclay and the family better is well worth it and a fitting finale to the series. He will tell you how to steal an hour.

If you haven’t read the previous books, then I suggest you do. See my reviews for A Name Unknown and A Song Unheard.

Passion meant suffering - An Hour Unspent @RoseannaMWhite #book on tour with @Celebrate_Lit read #bookreview & enter #free #giveaway #amreading Click To Tweet

I would like to give An Hour Spent 4****

I received a complimentary copy of this book via CelebrateLit. A favourable review was not required, and the opinions are my own.

Click here to purchase your copy!

This book review was brought to you by Margaret Kazmierczak author of “How to Make Victoria Sponge” And a contributor to Heart”wings” devotional.

About the Book

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews An Hour Unspent by Roseanna M WhiteBarclay Pearce

Once London’s top thief, Barclay Pearce has turned his back on his life of crime and now uses his skills for a nation at war. But not until he rescues a clockmaker’s daughter from a mugging does he begin to wonder what his future might hold.

Evelina Manning

Evelina Manning has constantly fought for independence but she certainly never meant for it to inspire her fiancé to end the engagement and enlist in the army. When the intriguing man who saved her returns to the Manning residence to study clockwork repair with her father, she can’t help being interested. But she soon learns that nothing with Barclay Pearce is as simple as it seems.

The clockmaker

As 1915 England plunges ever deeper into war, the work of an ingenious clockmaker may give England an unbeatable military edge—and Germany realizes it as well. Evelina’s father soon finds his whole family in danger—and it may just take a reformed thief to steal the time they need to escape it.

About the Author

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews An Hour Unspent by Roseanna M WhiteRoseanna M. White is a bestselling, Christy Award nominated author who has long claimed that words are the air she breathes. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two kids, editing, designing book covers, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of a slew of historical novels that span several continents and thousands of years. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to find their way into her books…to offset her real life, which is blessedly ordinary. You can learn more about her and her stories at www.RoseannaMWhite.com.

Guest Post from Roseanna

Last year, as I finished up the writing of An Hour Unspent, my great-grandmother passed away at the age of 103. As I sat at her funeral service and listened to the heartfelt memorial raised up to her by her kids and grandkids, I realized anew that this woman had been a matriarch in the truest sense of the word. She’d taught my family for generations how to love the Lord and each other, how to serve the Lord and each other, and how to trust the Lord and each other. Grandma Seward was, in so many ways, the one who instilled in me my idea of what family really is.

That idea—that it’s those knit together by love more than blood, and that faith is the strongest foundation—is what I built my unusual family of thieves upon in the Shadows Over England series. And strange as it is to liken my twenty-something reformed-thief hero to my 103-year-old-grandmother, Barclay Pearce is very much to his family what Maxine Seward was to mine.

The founder. The caregiver. The leader.

I knew as I began the series that I would write about Barclay in book three, and as I got to know him better throughout the series, I grew so excited to share his story! This is a man who led his family first into and then out of a life a crime, always for the right reasons—so he could provide for the children under his care. All he ever wanted to do was give them what he himself had lost. To show them love. To prove to them that they were worth any sacrifice.

It was truly a blessing for me to get to write the story in which Barclay found someone to come alongside him, to appreciate and learn to understand him. To finally share what started him down this path. I loved the idea that only a reformed thief could steal the time another family needed to overcome their own trials.

Fun research

There are many historical items in the book that were such fun to explore—watchmaking of the era, the suffrage movement in England, technological advancements of the war—but at the heart, this isn’t a story about any of those.

It’s a story about how far people should go for love. I hope you enjoy Barclay’s story as much as I did!

Blog Stops

October

The Avid ReaderOctober 30

The Power of WordsOctober 30

Back Porch ReadsOctober 30

Kat’s Corner BooksOctober 30

Janice’s Book ReviewsOctober 30

Where Faith and Books MeetOctober 31

Reading Is My SuperPowerOctober 31

Faithfully BookishOctober 31

Genesis 5020October 31

November

Fiction AficionadoNovember 1

Among the ReadsNovember 1

The Lit AddictNovember 1

Just the Write EscapeNovember 1

MultifariousNovember 2

Godly Book ReviewsNovember 2

Real World Bible StudyNovember 2

Madeline ClarkNovember 2

Reflections From My BookshelveNovember 3

Christian BookaholicNovember 3

Inspirationally Ever AfterNovember 3

Bookworm MamaNovember 3

BigreadersiteNovember 3

Blogging With Carol , November 4

D’S QUILTS & BOOKSNovember 4

Life with the TribeNovember 4

The Becca FilesNovember 4

Kathleen DenlyNovember 5

Cordially BarbaraNovember 5

Abba’s Prayer Warrior PrincessNovember 5

Simple Harvest ReadsNovember 5 (Guest Post from Mindy Houng)

God’s Little BookwormNovember 6

All-of-a-kind MomNovember 6

Faery Tales Are RealNovember 6

Christian Chick’s ThoughtsNovember 6

Carpe DiemNovember 6

Margaret KazmierczakNovember 7

Locks, Hooks and BooksNovember 7

Christian Author, J.E.GraceNovember 7

Blossoms and Blessings , November 7

Maureen’s Musings , November 8

Connie’s History Classroom , November 8

Book by BookNovember 8

Just CommonlyNovember 8

cherylbbookblogNovember 9

The Christian Fiction GirlNovember 9

Have A Wonderful Day , November 9

With a Joyful NoiseNovember 9

KarenSueHadley , November 10

Tell Tale Book ReviewsNovember 10

Babbling Becky L’s Book ImpressionsNovember 10

Baker kellaNovember 10

Bibliophile ReviewsNovember 10

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly KissesNovember 11

Inklings and Notions , November 11

Two Points of InterestNovember 11

Inspiration ClotheslineNovember 11

A Baker’s PerspectiveNovember 11

Henry HappensNovember 12

Proud to Be an Autism MomNovember 12

Texas Book-aholicNovember 12

Debbie’s Dusty DeliberationsNovember 12

Giveaway

Finished

Friendship, marriage and love – life on the trail

Have you been blessed with a long friendship? My longest one has lasted since I was eleven and no I am not going to tell you how old I am now! Figure it out if you can. She is seventeen years older than me and into her seventies.  I had the privilege of being her bridesmaid, and she talked me into wearing a dress. Horror of horrors as I only ever wore skirts to school and just under pain of death. Dresses/shirts got in the way of climbing trees, playing football and generally rummaging around.

I reckon I would have been suited to life on the trail with the pilgrims in Caryl McAdoo’s book Gone to Texas.  Knowing how to make and light a fire, change a wheel on my bicycle, make things out of junk. Skills I enjoyed along with improvising. But I never improvised with friendship.

In Gone to Texas seventeen souls “joined by blood and friendship” travel together to the promised land, will their friendship survive? Continue reading below for my review.

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews Gone to Texas by Caryl McAdoo - Friendship

My Penny’s Worth

“Wagons roll” a blast from my childhood past that blared out from the television. So different from the history of England with our Kings, Queens and Knights in shining armour. I love the simplicity of the American Wild West. Caryl McAdoo’s book Gone to Texas reminded me of that past era. The pilgrimages made by ordinary people to find the promise land.

The Characters make the book

Throw a few families together add a widower and slave, mix it up with secrets and sins, and you have a journey of revelations, forgiveness and redemption. As the wagons roll friendship, marriage and love vie for centre stage.  I felt each character’s vulnerability at times as well as their great strength.

Yes I chuckled at one point

There is a scene: “The ladies gasped in unison, including Alicia. Uncle Laud spoke up, ‘Shot him dead? Mercy!’ ‘Over politics?’ I had to smile.

#amreading Gone to Texas @CarylMcAdoo #book on tour with @Celebrate_Lit read #bookreview & enter #free #giveaway Click To Tweet
The skill of the writer

Caryl McAdoo had me walking alongside the wagons listening into the conversations, holding hands with anticipation. Travelling with these souls as they journeyed onwards to the land of hope. Within the pages, you will find secrets and sins, forgiveness and redemption. These pilgrims walk the path of pain and sorrow while trying to hold onto their friendships.

Yes, there are disasters, it is the 1840’s and travelling by wagon takes months to get to a destination. There are no fast trains to catch back then. Just as I am getting comfortable by the fire with my friends, Ms McAdoo takes the mat from right under my feet.

“The thunder rolled over her heart, and the lightning flashed in her mind, and the rain wet her cheeks every time she found herself alone.”

The life of a pilgrim is tough. And it gets tougher.

“He slumped down to the base of the tree. Her lantern snuffed out, just like his life would be without her. There’d be no light. Tears filled his eyes.”

What are you doing to me?

“He looked skyward. ‘Please, Father, give me the desires of my heart.’”

Does God? My emotions are rung, I want to know what Caryl McAdoo has in store for them all.  But like you dear reader you will have to wait, you to read the book and me for the next in the series.

Does their friendship survive? He he, I can’t tell you 🙂

I am sore from the hardwood of the wagon seat, but I hope you will get on board and read this book.

Thank you, Caryl, for writing this book. I’d like to give it 4****

*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*

If you liked my book review please comment and don’t forget to enter the giveaway.

This book review was brought to you today by Margaret Kazmierczak author of “How to Make Victoria Sponge” And a contributor to Heart”wings” devotional.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Book

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews Gone to Texas by Caryl McAdoo - Friendship

Book Title: Gone to Texas

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre: Historical Romance

Release date: September 6, 2018

Can beauty truly come from ashes?

Deception drives seventeen souls to hard choices. Either stay on the land they thought they’d bought or heed the lure of free land in the faraway wilderness of a new Republic. Rife with peril and hardship, three families knit together by blood and friendship head out with a widowed man, daughter, and his slave, gambling everything they own on the prospect of land ownership and working it together. Does friendship pave a way to marriage? Can puppy-love survive through a harrowing journey to blossom into a forever lover? With duress at every turn, can the clan stay together all the way to Texas and accomplish their goals?

About the Author

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews Gone to Texas by Caryl McAdoo - FriendshipTop priority is God’s glory, and that’s exactly what Caryl McAdoo prays her stories will bring. To entertain and draw readers into a closer walk with Him is next. A quick check of stars and reviews attest to the success of this award-winning, best-selling author—all by the Father’s faithfulness. Besides writing, she loves singing praises, including the new songs He gives her! Visit her YouTube channel. Ron, her high school sweetheart husband won her heart fifty-two years ago, and they share four children and seventeen grandsugars. Ron and Caryl live on thirty-four acres ‘The Peaceable’ in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas and wait expectantly for God to open the next door.

Northeast Texas and wait expectantly for God to open the next door.

Guest Post from Caryl

As much as I hated leaving the Buckmeyers, Baylors, and Nightingales and the Red River Valley, I loved starting this fresh Family Saga series with all new characters! GONE TO TEXAS is Book One of the Cross Timber Romances and features three families—the O’Neals, Van Zandts, and Worleys—joined by blood and friendship through Liberty O’Neal. Laud Worley is her little brother and Mallory Van Zandt, her best friend since school days.

Together, they’d traveled south to settle in Tennessee and were about to harvest their first cotton crop that fall in 1840 when they discovered the deed to their land—the land they’d spent all their pooled savings on—was forged and no-good.

New horizons

The legal owner graciously allows them to stay through harvest, taking his portion of their labor and cottonseed. At the gin, Seve Van Zandt hears rumors of Texas, a new Rebublic out west, offering free land to pioneers willing to tame its wildlands. This first story—book one—is all about their journey to the new country filled with hope and dreams.

A hired widower who with his daughter and slave helped harvest the clan’s cotton asked to join them on their journey, and so, on that faithful September morn, seventeen souls set out after they hung a hand painted sign on one of the cabins they left behind. “Gone to Texas”!

A book amongst books

Another very special thing about this novel, one hundred twelve thousand words—about three hundred fifty pages, is that it is also book one in a brand new collection! The Thanksgiving Books and Blessings Collection that includes stories from eight other authors besides me: Lena Nelson Dooly, Heather Blanton, Kristin Holt, Kit Morgan, Suzette Williams, Pauline Creeden, George McVey, and Lynette Sowell!

All nine books will have Thanksgiving Dinner with family around the table, giving thanks to God for all his blessings. I’ve noticed many series launched in December, but Thanksgiving is my favorite. I love giving thanks to the Lord!

And as always, I pray my story gives God glory, and that its readers will be drawn closer to Him through it. He blesses and highly favors me daily. I cannot thank or praise Him enough!

Thank you, too, for reading my stories, reviewing my stories, and participating in the most AWESOME CELEBRATE LIT‘s Blog Tour!!

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, September 11

Captive Dreams Window, September 12

proud to be an autism mom, September 12

Inklings and notionsSeptember 13

Luv’N Lambert Life, September 13

cherylbbookblog, September 14

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, September 14

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 15

Janices book reviewsSeptember 16

Abba’s prayer warrior princess, September 17

Carpe Diem, September 17

Creating Romance, September 18

Madeline Clark, September 18

Margaret Kazmierczak, September 19

The Mimosa Blossom, September 20

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, September 20

Back Porch Reads, September 21

Bibliophile Reviews, September 22

Texas Book-aholic, September 23

Godly Book Reviews, September 24

BigreadersiteSeptember 24

Giveaway

Finshed

Blind to the past – pursuing truth no matter what

Blind to the past – I am trying my best to be. Otherwise, how do you move on? I’m not saying that you shouldn’t be responsible for your past, but if Jesus can forgive your past….? It’s about forgiveness I think, forgiving my selfishness and blindness of other people’s needs. Of beating myself up when I don’t come up to my expectations. Oh yes, I have been guilty of that one!

I would like to forget my inadequacies. Or rather I would love God to wipe clean my slate so that I can move on. The thing is He has; it’s me who has not. And I reap the rewards of not handing it all over and leaving it in God’s capable care. A total wipeout, a clean break, no memories. I wonder if Ella, Vikki and Simon agree – pursuing truth no matter what?

My Penny’s Worth

Ties that Blind by Chautona Havig  – at long last the final instalment of the Sight Unseen Series.  Yes, at last, I will see the answers to my questions from None so Blind and Will not See. At last, I shall no longer be blind but able to pursue the truth behind the plots.

Was I disappointed?

Well first, I needed to remind myself of the other two plot lines, so I perused my previous reviews.  Ella, mother and wife and Vikki, a lone lady, suddenly in a hotel miles from where she lived who had both lost their memories. Both now blind to their past and short of answers. And so was I, until Ties that Blind arrived on my kindle. Putting everything else aside, cooking, washing, cleaning the house, sleeping, well who needs to eat, wash, clean and rest when you have the key to the mystery in your hands. And yes depriving myself proved to be worth it. Even if I had tried to eat, the food on my fork would not have found its way to my mouth.

What I liked

The new character Simon Prescott led me into his world of blindness. If ever there were a person who fulfilled the quote (which Ms Havig put in her guest post for Will not See),

“There are none so blind as those who will not see. The most deluded people are those who choose to ignore what they already know.”

It is Simon.

Her heart constricted at the pain that he would feel… if his memory didn’t lay in its own coffin somewhere. #tiesthatblind @Chautona #newrelease Click To Tweet

And from his story, the key is found. But you had to work for it; it didn’t appear just like that as in other books that suddenly end with the mystery solved. This is what I liked, the guessing game that kept me asking why and how had these three people lost their memories. Chautona Havig does not do an easy fix.

What I didn’t like

The fact that I had to wait so long for the final book. Simple.

Blind to the past – pursuing truth no matter what

The story would not be compelling if the characters just rolled over and gave in. There is something mystical about seeking the truth no matter what. We by nature want to know the truth – even if it hurts. What we do with that truth is another blog post! Ella, Vikki and Simon subscribe to that journey through their respective memory loss.  Not knowing isn’t acceptable. It drives the story forward for the characters and the reader. I wanted to know!

The book raises more profound questions

There is a before and after in these stories. Before the memory loss and after it. Each character copes with the event differently. If you wanted to draw more out of these books, you could ask yourself questions such as “If this happened to me what would I cling to the most to help me get through this ordeal.”  “How would I use this opportunity to start again?” “How can I use God’s Grace and Mercy who gives me this freedom every day to become more Christ-like?” “What blind areas do I have that need God’s sight to heal them?”

With that in mind, this series offers more than just a mystery, but a window into how blind we can be in our lives and into the lives of others. We all need Grace.

Who would enjoy this series?

If you like books that have real problems with lives that are messed up and enjoy seeing people grow from their challenges, then I would recommend the Sight Unseen Series. I would also suggest getting all three and reading them back to back – now that you can! That’s what I am going to do now 🙂

Thank you Chautona Havig for writing this book.

*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*

Click here to purchase your copy!

If you enjoyed this book review then, please see my other ones for:

None so Blind here

Will not See here

This book review was brought to you by Margaret Kazmierczak author of “How to Make Victoria Sponge” And a contributor to Heart”wings” devotional.

About the Book

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews Ties That Blind by Chautona HavigTitle: Ties That Blind

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Suspense

Release Date: April 24, 2018

He may not be the only person in the Rockland area to wake up without a memory, but he might be the only killer…

The main character – Simon Prescott

Simon Prescott, the latest victim of spontaneous amnesia in Rockland, is under suspicion of murder. The evidence, though weak and circumstantial, points only to him.  He’s confident he didn’t do it, but there’s no way to prove it.  Grieving for a wife he doesn’t remember, Simon refuses to allow his family in, refuses to cooperate with police, and is heading straight for the pokey if he doesn’t figure out something and fast.

Enter: Ella Weeks and Vikki Jeffries

The previous two victims are determined to help him, and with jail time looming, Simon capitulates.  But what Vikki and Ella find as they work through Simon’s life reveals astounding and rather chilling evidence of a bigger scheme than any of them could have imagined.

They’re on the verge of total discovery, but the closer they get, the less confident they are that they want to know.

About the Author

Margaret Kazmierczak reviews Ties that Blind by Chautona HavigThe author of dozens of books in a variety of genres, Chautona Havig lives and writes in California’s Mojave Desert where she uses story to nudge her readers to the feet of the Master Storyteller.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN, ANYWAY?

“So why is this series called ‘Sight Unseen’ if it’s about people who lose their memories? Why the vision references?”

I can’t pretend I wanted to answer her question. She isn’t the first to ask, and I doubt she’ll be the last. I tried to explain.

Look, it’s a valid question. Originally, the first book was called From the Cinders, and if it had remained a stand-alone book, it still would be. But when I finished with another person waking up to no memories and a hint that something sinister might be behind it all, I had to change it to fit two books—no, three!

Recall. Rewind. Refresh. I liked those titles. But that still didn’t give me the name of a series. I kept studying. Tried again.

I read what would become None So Blind three times in a row if I recall correctly. And as I read it, a theme emerged. Ella Weeks hadn’t been blind to her faults even before her memory loss. Even her husband hadn’t been, despite his obvious love for her. But those around her had been blind to her awareness of those faults—to her silent cries for help in overcoming them.

WILL NOT SEE EMERGED WITH A SIMILAR THEME

Vikki had a past that she hid from and refused to acknowledge. And even as those around her drew closer to provide support, she still managed to block out all that she found frightening—even physically shutting down and shutting out life.

So, when it came time to plan the final book in the series, the one that would now tie together everything that had happened, I knew I wanted something that also fit with the other titles. And one night it came to me. Ties That Blind. So often our ties to people blind us to their faults—to the destructive influences they have in our lives. And Simon Prescott will learn that lesson in a rather lonely, horrible way.

THE SIGHT UNSEEN SERIES REMINDS US OF WHAT PAUL SAID IN CORINTHIANS.

Now we see through dark glasses… we can’t really make it all out. But with the Lord, when we’re truly with Him in eternity, we’ll see things as clearly as we do when we are face to face.

And that’s what faith is all about, right? It’s the “substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” When we “buy in” to the Lord Jesus, we’re taking it all in faith. We’re trusting in Him, “Sight Unseen,” just as the characters in this series do with every element of their lives.

I hope their journeys bless you as they have me as I wrote them.

Blog Stops

Live. Love. Read. , August 18

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, August 18

Inklings and notions, August 19

Blossoms and Blessings, August 19

Fiction Aficionado, August 20

Among the Reads, August 20

Kaylee’s Kind Of Writes, August 21

Blogging With Carol, August 21

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, August 22

Lots of Helpers, August 22

Cordially Barbara, August 23

All-of-a-kind Mom, August 23

Multifarious, August 24

Christian Bookaholic, August 24

proud to be an autism mom, August 25

Bibliophile Reviews, August 25

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 25

Texas Book-aholic, August 26

Janices book reviews, August 26

A Reader’s Brain, August 27

Jeanette’s Thoughts, August 27

Maureen’s Musings, August 28

Carpe Diem, August 28

Margaret Kazmierczak, August 29

A Baker’s Perspective, August 29

Bigreadersite, August 30

Mary Hake, August 30

Pause for Tales, August 31

Readers cozy corner, August 31

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, August 31

Giveaway

Finished

How many victims can a book have?

Have we become de-sensitive to victims?

There’s no end to the victims in this world; you just have to turn the news on to be accosted by scenes of violence to back up that fact. All too often it is the vulnerable that suffer. Images of bulging bellies from malnutrition to cities destroyed by bombs due to war. Our senses bombarded with desperation can lead to paralysed and hard hearts, that is a crying shame. We’re in danger of becoming desensitised to the victims who stare out at us from behind the lens.

What has this to do with Storms in Serenity written by Fay Lamb? Read my review below to find out.

Storms in Serenity FB Banner copy

My Penny’s worth

How can one man create a domino effect from his actions causing a wave of victims to rise out of his mistake? Just how many victims can a book have?

When a disaster happens, the world often knows about it instantly due to 24 hours of news shown through the media. Secrets, however, don’t get this type of coverage. It is usually many years later that the effects of the sin emerge. The victims that stare out at us today from our screens are the result of man’s campaign to rule the earth. To be god’s of their world, with no compassion for the victims that are left in their wake.

Secrets

David New knows he needs to speak up about his past because he is sensitive to the hurt that his secret has caused. He is a victim just as much as his family if he allows the past to rule his present and future.

I found that it was hard to put this book down as so many lives were affected because of David New. Each character became important to me as they fought with their victim status. Could they rise above the sin, would they? The book made me think, what would I do in the circumstances, how would I react, could I forgive? There is just so much to ponder on with the different relationships.

Were there too many victims?

Personally, I think this book dealt with the issues compassionately and showed how many people get hurt when a person deviates from God’s path and commands. The storms were thick and left a devastating trail behind with the characters having to pick up their lives and reassess how they could survive. In this case, there were not too many victims as the story moved from one relationship to another. It showed how much we need God in our lives as we are all vulnerable.

I can say without a doubt this book is one of hope. It might not make headline material, but it does provide the reader with an opportunity to assess their degree of compassion and mercy. Something that this world needs to combat the desensitisation we may have towards others.

Thank you, Fay Lamb, for writing this book.

I would like to give this book 4 stars.

*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*

Fay Lamb has a great free giveaway, see the end of this post for details.

Let me know in the comments if this book review was useful. Many thanks – Margaret 🙂

About the Book

0 Front Draft 2Book Title: Storms in Serenity

Author: Fay Lamb

Release Date: February 2018

Genre: Romance, Mystery

 

 

How can one man save the town he loves when he’s the reason for the destruction?

Serenity Key, Florida, has seen its share of hurricanes, but this time, one foul weather system is about to collide with another storm, and this one has nothing to do with atmospheric pressure.

David New has guarded his secrets for years, but when two brothers, John and Andy Ryan, arrive in town and he gets news that the daughter he’s never told anyone about has disappeared, possibly the victim of a heinous crime, and the lives of many of the town residents begin to unravel in the gale force consequences of Jake’s past, he has nowhere else to turn.

God is the only one Who can calm the storms, but can David and the good folks of Serenity Key survive until He does?

A tempest has been brewing for thirty years, with only one island town in its path.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

FLamb 16Fay Lamb writes emotionally charged stories with a Romans 8:28 attitude, reminding readers that God is always in the details. Fay donates 100% of her royalties to Christian charities.

Storms in Serenity is the first book in Fay’s Serenity Key series. Fay’s other series include Amazing Grace and her novels, Stalking WillowBetter than RevengeEverybody’s Brokenand Frozen Notes. The Ties that Bind Series includes Charisse, Libby, and Hope. Delilah is coming soon.

Fay’s is also the author of The Art of Characterization: How to Use the Elements of Storytelling to Connect Readers to an Unforgettable Cast.

Guest Post from Fay Lamb

ONCE UPON A STORM

I’m one of those people who love storms. I revel in the lightning that streaks across the sky, the rumble of thunder as it rolls over the air, and I dance to the eerie sound of the wind coming through a crack in the window. Storms don’t frighten me. I’m an East Coast Floridian. I’ve lived through many a tempest.

However, so that you won’t think me completely insane, I have also fled a few hurricanes. In our house, a Cat III storm is something to debate as we watch to see how low the millibars fall at the storm’s center. A Cat IV means gather the important documents, place them into plastic bags and tuck them into plastic tubs, batten down the hatches, and depending upon its projected proximity, hunker down or flee. A Cat V is a no-brainer. Run!

If only the storms in our lives had categories so that we know when to stand and face the winds of life or to debate the direction, or to decide when to flee. Sometimes, the storms of life come at us without warning, with no stirring up of the waters by our own hands. Other times, the storms can be abated by the stance we take, the decisions we make, and by failing to move out of harm’s way, perhaps in an opposite direction.

That’s what my first novel in The Serenity Key series is about: one man stirred up a storm many years prior. The destructive force of that storm amassed because he didn’t take a stand, he failed to make crucial decisions, and he choose to run from a situation that God would not allow him to outrun. Storms in Serenity is a modern-day retelling of the Biblical truths of the aftermath of David’s sin with Bathsheba and the destruction the storms of life that blew apart not only David’s family but also those he called friends.

Mostly, though, Storms in Serenity, is a novel that proves that when it comes to sin, truly, no man is an island.

Blog Stops

Bibliophile Reviews, March 13

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, March 13

A Greater Yes, March 14

Bigreadersite, March 14

proud to be an autism mom, March 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 15

Multifarious, March 16

Christian Author, J.E.Grace, March 17

History, Mystery & Faith, March 18

A Baker’s Perspective, March 19

Simple Harvest Reads, March 20

MargaretKazmierczak, March 21

Texas Book-aholic, March 22

Carpe Diem, March 23

Pursuing Stacie, March 24

Janices book reviews, March 24

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 25

Red Headed Book Lady, March 25

Daysong Reflections, March 26

Among the Reads, March 26

Giveaway

 

502668e9-98f3-4c44-8865-f56ad827f304To celebrate her tour, Fay is giving away a grand prize of an Echo Spot!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/ca75

Son of Promise allow forgiveness to be the way

Can Son of Promise change your idea of forgiveness?

Sons of promise FB cover copy

My Penny’s worth

Son of Promise

I have enjoyed other books by Caryl McAdoo and looked forward to Son of Promise with great anticipation. This story is well written as is expected from a seasoned Author, and there is a lovely flow to it. When God is at the centre, of the heart, all things are possible, and Caryl McAdoo portrays precisely that in this new novel.

Oh those messy moments

Indeed, this book has messy moments, and the message of love, forgiveness and new beginnings is apparent throughout. God being the merciful Father is heavily imprinted in the storyline and those of the main characters.

The story has tension and tenderness

I could feel the animosity of Cody towards his mother, which brought me more realism into the story. There is tension and tenderness that connects the characters throughout and a “will he or won’t he” ride off into the sunset even when Cody’s new life appeared hundred times better than before? Sometimes I confused Cody’s age with that of an older child, but then he had seen more than the average twelve-year-old, and I wondered if he would have been a little bit more troublesome?

I could see and feel the scene

On the whole, I enjoyed this book and read it quite quickly. I could hear the goats bleating, see the fear in their eyes when danger was near. Experience the thrill of riding for the first time, and smell the sweat from a hard days work. Caryl McAdoo is so good at these descriptions in her novels.

Son of Promise is a sweet read, and those that love stories of forgiveness and mercy may enjoy this book.

Thank you, Caryl, for writing Son of Promise.

*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*

Click here to purchase your copy!

 

Don’t forget the FREE GIVEAWAY at the end of this blog

About the Book

Title: Son of Promise00 Son of Promise

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre: Woman’s Fiction

Son of Promise
Be it known, your sins will find you out, but God’s mercy endureth forever!
Can a wife find the grace to forgive when her husband’s withheld the truth?
Travis Buckmeyer has a secret son, and the morning’s come to tell his sweet wife. He hates breaking Emma Lee’s heart. She promised him one ten years ago but hasn’t been blessed to carry a baby to term. Every miscarriage made the telling harder, but now his clock’s run out. He’s going for his son, praying he won’t lose her.
About the Author
Lunch(1)Caryl McAdoo

Caryl McAdoo prays her story brings God glory, and a quick scroll through her novels’ rankings by Christian readers attests to the Father’s faithfulness. She loves writing almost as much as singing the new songs He gives her—look her up on YouTube to hear a few. Her high school sweetheart husband won her heart fifty-two years ago, and now they share four children and seventeen grandsugars. Ron and Caryl live in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door.

Guest Post from Caryl McAdoo

SON OF PROMISE
Son of Promise is a companion story to my Texas Romance Family Saga’s book ten CHIEF OF SINNERS—features Travis and Emma Lee Buckmeyer, who readers first meet in CHIEF. She’s the sister of its heroine Sandy Harris, and he is a friend of its hero Buddy Nightingale; he’s also the son of Crockett Buckmeyer (from book eight COVERING LOVE) and grandson of Patrick Henry Buckmeyer (hero of book one VOW UNBROKEN).
The secret surfaces
A standalone, it isn’t necessary for readers to know all these ancestors to enjoy SON OF PROMISE, but those who do will surely love it all the more. What I know is that this couple won a chunk of my heart. Their faith is outstanding and their love inspiring. In the ’40s, Emma Lee didn’t have the fertility options young women do today, and miscarriage after miscarriage left her hurting. That’s why he hadn’t told her.
He didn’t want to hurt her, but circumstances had changed, and time was up. She had to be told that morning he already had a son born from a one-night liaison thirteen years before because he was leaving to claim his Cody from a reform school and bring him home.
An unconditional love
The boy had never known real love, but I loved him from the first. Forced to grow up way too fast—lying, stealing, and participating in most any other rebellious act—he’s missed so much. He’s overwhelmed with Travis and Emma Lee—their home, their partnership and love for each other, and their generosity toward him.
He planned to light out from the start, but days piled on top each other, and he never pulled the trigger.
A dog’s perspective
In VOW UNBROKEN, there was an awesome canine named Blue Dog, and I went into his POV (Point Of View—got into his head) a couple of times. My Simon & Schuster editor ‘requested’ that I lose those segments, and so I did. But in this novel, I get into a canine’s head again . . . I’m hoping readers will find that fun.
From goats to strangers
In years past, I owned, managed, and milked a herd of eighty-plus dwarf goats and loved their Great Pyrenees guardians, so it was fun to include them in the story. I love how Emma Lee was able to sell her paintings for exorbitant prices, but remained so humble and unassuming. And that she and Travis opened their home (they’re so much like my husband and me) to total strangers. We’ve had so many people live with us over the years, to help them, be blessings—the hands and feet of God in the earth.
Finally…
I pray my story gives God glory and that its readers will be drawn closer to Him through it. He blesses me and highly favors me daily. I can’t thank or praise Him enough!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, January 18

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, January 18

Christian Author, J.E.Grace Blog, January 19

Splashes of JoyJanuary 19

Karen Sue Hadley , January 20

Maureen’s Musings, January 20

proud to be an autism mom, January 21

Bibliophile Reviews, January 21

Reading is My SuperPower, January 22 (Interview)

A Greater YesJanuary 22

Texas Book-aholic, January 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 23

Baker kella, January 24

Janices book reviewsJanuary 24

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, January 25

Jeanette’s ThoughtsJanuary 25

Quiet Quilter, January 26

Carpe Diem, January 26

C Jane Read, January 27

A Baker’s Perspective, January 27

Simple Harvest Reads, January 28 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)

Pursuing StacieJanuary 28

Red Headed Book Lady, January 29

margaret kazmierczak, January 29

cherylbbookblog, January 30

BigreadersiteJanuary 30

Locks, Hooks and Books, January 31

Avid Reader Book Reviews, January 31

 Giveaway

e5f4939d-cd96-45de-b748-8fb15bc1a0afTo celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away

GRAND PRIZE : $50 Amazon Gift Card
1st Prize: Choice-of-Caryl’s Titles (print or ebook)
2nd-4th: ebook of SON OF PROMISE!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c511

A Song Unheard an amazing book about love and war

A Song Unheard requires an ear to hear the music of the writer’s pen.

a song unheard fb banner copy

My Penny’s worth

A Song Unheard

A Song Unheard by Roseanna M. White has just blown me away with its pure musical writing. Yes, I raise my hands up – a book that sings despair and hope through its melodic pages. Consequently, it would lure me into a gentle aria only to send my senses into a crescendo moments later. I wanted to stand and applaud even though I had just read the first chapter.

Should you trust a thief?

Dear reader, can I be honest? A question you don’t ask a thief as it requires a truthful answer which the pilferer might steal! However, I don’t mind as A Song Unheard has taken my heart. But steal away Willa Forsythe steal away as there are very few books where I shed a tear.

A book to top A Name Unknown?

I thought Roseanna White’s first book very good, but in my opinion, this one tops A Name Unknown. Why? This book builds upon the Family of thieves and uncovers more of their secrets. Willa takes the lead role this time and what a character she has turned out to be. A Song Unheard plays to her strengths and weaknesses superbly. I loved Willa and her music, how she made a beaten up old violin her friend. With skill like hers, it is no wonder she made the Stradivarius putty in her hands. So who wouldn’t fall in love with her music?

Can you hear the message?

There is a beautiful message floating amongst notes, can you hear it? Oh, this book oozes brilliance.

A guarded heart

I love the stamina in which Willa keeps her heart enclosed. Equally, her freedom will take this determination to a higher level. There are no accessible routes for Willa or her heart. Or are there? Well sorry folks, I’m not going to do a spoiler as I want you to read the book for yourselves.

Who else is part of the music?

Of course, the book isn’t only about Willa. Lucas De Wilde plays an important part too. And I love the way he is caught in Willa’s web just as I am. Barclay, also a member of the Family steps into the breach and is infuriating but often right when decisions need action. The story would not be complete without Lucas’ family who needs rescuing from the Germans.

Finally…

So there you have it, a story of thieves, spies, deception, love and forgiveness all written into a musical composition and awaiting an audience.

Can I just say, I loved A Song Unheard? Well, I just have.

A recommendation is a given. But I would read A Name Unheard first so that you get to know this family.

I hope my five stars won’t be stolen by the Family!

Thank you Rosanna for writing this lovely book.

*I received this book for free. No compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.*

Don’t forget the FREE GIVEAWAY at the end of this blog.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Book

SongUnheard

Title: A Song Unheard

Author: Roseanna M. White

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Release Date: January 2, 2018

 

Willa Forsythe

Willa Forsythe is both a violin prodigy and top-notch thief, which makes her the perfect choice for a crucial task at the outset of World War I—to steal a cypher from a famous violinist currently in Wales.

Lukas De Wilde

Lukas De Wilde has enjoyed the life of fame he’s won—until now when being recognized nearly gets him killed. Everyone wants the key to his father’s work as a cryptologist. And Lukas fears that his mother and sister, who have vanished in the wake of the German invasion of Belgium, will pay the price. The only light he finds is meeting the intriguing Willa Forsythe.

But danger presses in from every side, and Willa knows what Lukas doesn’t—that she must betray him and find that cypher or her own family will pay the price as surely as his has.

About the Author

Roseanna White 2017Roseanna M. White is a bestselling, Christy Award nominated author who has long claimed that words are the air she breathes. When not writing fiction, Roseanna is homeschooling her two kids, editing, designing book covers, and pretending her house will clean itself. She is the author of a slew of historical novels that span several continents and thousands of years. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to find their way into her books…to offset her real life, which is blessedly ordinary. You can learn more about her and her stories at www.RoseannaMWhite.com.

Guest post from Roseanna White

An early start

I started playing the piano when I was 7. I didn’t discover any long-dormant genius or anything, but I liked it. When my sister quit, I kept playing. In middle school, I switched teachers. Moving from the lady at my church that I knew so well to someone who was just my piano teacher made a difference in how I applied myself. It deepened my love of music.

Making the music weep

We all know how some random moments stand out forever in our memory. One such for me happened on the school bus. I was sitting with my best friend, talking about the new piano piece I was learning. “Via Delorosa” means Road of Sorrow, and it’s a song that tells musically about Jesus’ journey to Golgotha—ending with the faint chime of the nails being driven into his palms. As my beloved Mrs. Peto went through this song with me the night before, I remember her circling a D♯ that I’d missed and saying how important that note was. That it made the whole line weep.

That it would make the hearers weep. An epiphany so huge I had to share it with my friend. A well placed sharp could make music weep! Who knew?

Music can be many things

That was but one lesson Mrs. Peto taught me in how music could evoke things words never could. A woman of strong faith, she also taught me how a song could preach the Gospel. Music can be medicine. It can be hope, tears or truth. Music can be Jesus to a hurting heart that turns its back on words.

A change of tempo

This is a lesson I never forgot, and I had it always in mind as I was writing A Song Unheard. In this story, both my hero and heroine are musicians—violinists. But Willa (who is SO STUBBORN) wouldn’t listen to words of faith from any of the people in her life “suddenly spouting such nonsense.”

But then, in her darkest hour, she hears a slip of melody. And she realizes it’s the Lord.

My prayer

I pray as readers move through the story of Willa Forsythe—violin prodigy and top-notch thief—that their spirits’ ears hear more than words, more than just a story. I pray they hear the Lord whispering that ultimate song. The one that says, “I love you.”

Want to hear the song Willa eventually wrote in the book? You can! The violin music in this trailer is officially dubbed “Willa’s Song” and written specifically for this book. I hope you enjoy it! http://bit.ly/ASongUnheardTrailer

Blog Stops

Fiction Aficionado, January 11

History, Mystery & Faith, January 11

Genesis 5020, January 11

Bookworm Mama, January 11

A Simply Enchanted Life, January 11

Avid Reader Book Reviews, January 12

Reflections From My Bookshelves, January 12

Blogging With Carol, January 12

Multifarious, January 12

proud to be an autism mom, January 12

Faithfully BookishJanuary 13

Christian Bookaholic, January 13

Karen Sue Hadley, January 13

Mary Hake, January 13

A Greater YesJanuary 13

Remembrancy, January 14

Blossoms and Blessings, January 14

Just the Write Escape, January 14

Connie’s History Classroom, January 14

Texas Book-aholic, January 14

A Reader’s Brain, January 15

Rachel’s Back Talk, January 15

Smiling Book Reviews, January 15

Cordially Barbara, January 15

Pursuing StacieJanuary 15

The Fizzy Pop Collection, January 16

Kat’s Corner Books, January 16

The Artist Librarian, January 16

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, January 16

Bigreadersite, January 16

Mommynificent, January 17

Seasons of Opportunities, January 17

Moments Dipped in Ink, January 17

Baker Kella, January 17

Black ‘n’ Gold Girl’s Book Spot, January 17

God’s Little Bookworm, January 18

allofakindmom, January 18

The Important Things in Life: God, Books, & Chocolate, January 18

Inklings and notions, January 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 18

Pause for Tales, January 19

Have A Wonderful Day, January 19

Just Commonly, January 19

Bibliophile Reviews , January 19

Janices book reviewsJanuary 19

Radiant LightJanuary 20

The Power of Words , January 20

Book by Book, January 20

CAC Devourer, January 20

Jeanette’s Thoughts, January 20

Splashes of JoyJanuary 21

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, January 21

Neverending Stories, January 21

Faery Tales Are Real, January 21

A Baker’s Perspective, January 21

margaret kazmierczak, January 22

The PhD Mamma, January 22

Cafinated Reads, January 22

Daysong Reflections, January 22

Romances of the Cross, January 23

Purposeful Learning, January 23

Rachel Scott McDaniel, January 23

Carpe Diem, January 23

Simple Harvest Reads, January 23

Kaylee’s Kind Of Writes, January 24

Henry Happens, January 24

Joy of Reading, January 24

Tell Tale Book Reviews, January 24

Raining Butterfly Kisses, January 24

Giveaway

 81aff2f9-c69d-4f15-a1a1-d701278cf344

In order to celebrate her tour, Roseanna is giving away a Grand Prize Package of a signed copy of the book. There is also a lovely album of soothing songs based on the Scriptures called Hidden in My Heart (winner’s choice of CD or digital download)!!

Click below to enter and be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c72a