Releasing just last month, Practicing Murder is a Christian suspense with a little splash of romance. Erin Unger is a new author for me,
and this book was a quick and enjoyable read. It drew me in from the start, and the plot well paced. I liked the tension of the back story, but found part of the resolution to be a little too fast. I liked that not everything was perfectly resolved at the end, showing some need for continued healing and growth.
Here is the synopsis:
You can find Erin's website here.
I did receive a free e-copy of this book. I was in no way obligated to post a positive review.
About the Book
Book: The Governess of Penwythe Hall
Author: Sarah Ladd
Genre: Historical Romance
Release Date: April 16, 2019
In the first of a new series from beloved Regency romance author, Sarah Ladd, Delia, a governess to five recently orphaned children, would risk anything to protect them . . . even her heart.
Cornwall was in her blood, and Delia feared she’d never escape its hold.Cornwall, England, 1811 Blamed for her husband’s death, Cordelia Greythorne fled Cornwall and accepted a governess position to begin a new life. Years later her employer’s unexpected death and his last request to watch over his five children force her to reevaluate. She can’t abandon the children now that they’ve lost both parents, but their new guardian lives at the timeworn Penwythe Hall . . . back on the Cornish coast she tries desperately to forget. Jac Trethewey is determined to revive Penwythe Hall’s once-flourishing apple orchards, and he’ll stop at nothing to see his struggling estate profitable again. He hasn’t heard from his brother in years, so when his nieces, nephews, and their governess arrive unannounced at Penwythe Hall, he battles both grief of this brother’s death and bewilderment over this sudden responsibility. Jac’s priorities shift as the children take up residence in the ancient halls, but their secretive governess—and the mystery shrouding her past—proves to be a disruption to his carefully laid plans. Rich with family secrets, lingering danger, and the captivating allure of new love, this first book in the Cornwall Novels series introduces us to the Twethewey family and their search for peace, justice, and love on the Cornish coast.
Click here to purchase your copy.
The Governess of Penwythe Hall has so much to offer: overcoming loss, romance, and intrigue. All of the characters in this book have suffered loss, and each grows from it. The children evolve and learn to accept their position at Penwythe Hall. Jac comes to terms with his broken relationship with his brother and quickly becomes attached the the children and Delia. Delia's dedication to her charges brings her back to a place she thought she'd never return, and in the process, she finds the strength to do what she never believed she could. I do wish there was a little bit more development of the relationship between Jac and Delia. It felt a little quick for me, but I appreciated the sequence of events that brought Delia to face her past and move forward. I liked the family aspect of this book as well, and I enjoyed reading this book.
About the Author
Sarah E. Ladd received the 2011 Genesis Award in historical romance for The Heiress of Winterwood. She is a graduate of Ball State University and has more than ten years of marketing experience. Sarah lives in Indiana with her amazing family and spunky golden retriever. Visit her online at SarahLadd.com; Facebook: SarahLaddAuthor; Twitter: @SarahLaddAuthor.
More About The Governess of Penwythe Hall5 things to know about Cornwall, England:
- Throughout its early history, Cornwall’s inhabitants called the country Kernow.
- Early inhabitants largely spoke their own language known as “Cornish,” which became nearly extinct in the 1800s
- The country has a long and rugged coastline and there were frequent shipwrecks.
- Fishing was a major industry, with herring, mackerel, and sardines being common catches.
- In 1870, novelist and poet Thomas Hardy called Cornwall “the region of dream and mystery.”
Sources: http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/empire_seapower/cornish_nation_01.shtml https://www.maritimeheritage.org/ports/Cornwall.html http://www.cornwallgoodseafoodguide.org.uk/cornish-fishing/history-of-the-cornish-fishing-industry.php
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To celebrate her tour, Sarah is giving away a grand prize of a finished paperback copy of The Governess of Penwythe Hall!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway!
Click the link below to enter.
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About the Book
Book: Thirty Days Hath
Author: Chautona Havig
Genre: Christian fiction, contemporary romance
Release Date: Revised edition, Feb 26, 2019
Blind Dates Are for Wimps!
At least, that’s what Adric Garrison thinks. Can you blame him? Thanks to his sister and brother-in-law, Adric is about to embark on a year of month-long, chaperoned, blind dates. Awkward.He didn’t ask for it. But Adric still finds himself living what seems more like a bad TV reality show than a new life in Fairbury. Once an ordinary (if prematurely gray and vertically challenged) guy, Adric is now Fairbury’s newest “most eligible bachelor,” and dreams of permanent bachelorhood loom on the horizon. Will he call it quits before the year is out, or will one of his “girls of the month” change his mind? One man, twelve women, one happily ever after.
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This was a cute story with a unique premise. I enjoyed the writing and there were a number of clever and fun scenes. Unfortunately, because there were so many different women, I missed some relationship development. I also didn't really think that the story needed the suspense aspect, although it did add some drama and solidify Adric's feelings for his choice. Overall, I did enjoy the book and look forward to my next book by Chautona Havig.
About the Author
Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her on the web and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.
More from Chautona
A Silent Truth No One Admits: Blind Dates Are for WimpsMaybe I’m not the one to talk. After all, I never dated. Not really. My best friend in high school was a guy. We went to the movies. We did things. Still, we were just great friends. I had what might be considered one date in Lubbock, Texas in 1987. Maybe. I didn’t consider it one, but I suppose the guy might have. Maybe. Then I went from best friends with the guy I’ve been married to for 30 years to engaged in the span of a few seconds after what might have been a rhetorical question. He’s under orders not to tell me if it was. After all, he’s the fool who went on to say, “I do.” Just sayin’. Still, in the first decade of the 21st century, I discovered a new “thing” in reality TV. The Bachelor. Though I tried watching it, I couldn’t after a while. It started out reasonably clean, but then it devolved into cat fights, spit-swapping sessions, and drama. Oh, the drama. But one aspect intrigued me. The focused attention to finding the girl. What if Christians did that? What if we stopped playing the silly game of “pretend we’re not in this to see if you’re someone I could put up with for the next fifty or sixty years…”? Oh, man. What if the church rallied around its members and helped without pushing. Trust me, you don’t want to push too much. You may discover that the people you’re pushing just get together and talk about it. Laugh at your antics. Mock the ridiculousness of it. Not that Kevin and I ever did that back in the day or anything. (Check out that story HERE.) That “what if?” spurred an idea. Sister churches. Chaperones. Not a couple of weeks in a giant house somewhere, but a whole month of real living with someone, day in. Day out. And again, with that chaperone to avoid that “appearance of evil” thing. If you could spend that much time with someone, seeing warts, virtues, best and worst sides… well, maybe you might just be right for each other. At the least, you’d have a good idea if you even wanted to find out. That’s a healthier and quicker start than two or three months of a date here or there and hoping you’re seeing the real person. Right? I created a character and ran with it. From giving him less than Hollywood good looks, to an anger problem and a blue-collar job, Adric had lots going for him… and not so much! Then I tested it out. Acid test. I signed him up for eHarmony. No, really. I did. For the record, apparently short, prematurely graying mechanics with anger issues are a hot commodity. It took hours to get it set up, but man there were many women out there for him… supposedly. And to this day, my Gmail email (that I never use) still says firstname.lastname@example.org. No joke. For what it’s worth, Adric learned one very difficult lesson that year. As I’ve already confessed. I’ve never been on a blind date. I doubt anyone would even consider that I’ve been on a date. Still, after writing this book, I know for one thing. Blind Dates Are for Wimps.
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About the Book
Book: This Daring Journey
Author: Misty M. Beller
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release Date: March 26, 2019
As a half-Indian raised among her Peigan tribe, Moriah Clark knows better than to trust white people. The tragedy that resulted in her birth is proof enough. But when her trusted grandfather marries her to a white man, she has no choice to but to obey and hope this new life isn’t her downfall. Her white husband turns out to be a decent sort, but his unexpected death left her to birth a newborn baby among hostile mountain men. She wants nothing more than to retreat to the safe haven of her tribal upbringing. When a mysterious frontiersman arrives on her doorstep seeking her deceased husband, his offer to escort her and the babe to her people seems like the opportunity she’s been praying to find. But can she trust him? Samuel Grant has been sent to retrieve Henry Clark for his sister’s wedding, but the sight that greets him at the little cabin in the woods is not what he expected. Not only has the man died, but Henry’s wife is fighting off an aggressive gang of men at gunpoint—while trying to conceal a newborn. He can’t leave the pair unattended, so helping her travel into the mountain country to reach her family seems like the only option. If he can win her trust, that is. Such a grueling journey with a three-week-old baby will be risky, but the challenges that arise test them far more than either expected. When a devastating surprise increases the danger ten-fold, Moriah focuses all her efforts on keeping her newborn daughter alive. Maybe that’s why she doesn’t realize how much of her heart belongs to the mountain man—until it’s too late.
To be honest, I had never heard of Misty Beller before this book! I actually thought it might be her first book, but it is not. She has many books you can check out at her website or on Amazon. This Daring Journey was a light and fast read. I finished it in a day and I enjoyed it. The story of Moriah and Samuel's journey through the mountains poses difficult challenges that require them to rely on each other. The sweet progression of respect and care they have for each other is a beautiful result of the adventure they embark on together and the kind and hard-working individuals that each one is. If you're looking for a quick and sweet historical romance, you should check this one out.
Click here to purchase your copy.
About the Author
More from MistyHow did I get started writing? I’ve always loved to read, but several years ago I was putting together my bucket list, and realized that I really did want to write a novel. So, “Write a novel that’s published” made it near the top! I decided, it’s now or never, and made the commitment to do it. So, I had a general idea that I wanted it to be a Christian historical western romance. But where to start? I finally decided I needed to find a good book to help me plan. I stumbled upon (a.k.a. God led me to) the best possible book to help me get started with a great plan: Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell. For all you writers out there, I can’t recommend it highly enough! From there, I’ve soaked in every bit of writing instruction I can from some amazing groups and individuals. And I’ve spent countless hours sitting with my laptop pouring out words onto the screen. Writing is in my blood. It’s my passion. A true gift from my Heavenly Father, and I pray daily that he uses the words for His purpose.
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About the Book
Author: J’Nell Ciesielski
Genre: Clean historical romance
Release Date: Feb 19, 2019
As shells explode over Nazi-occupied France, American music student Claire Baudin is trapped behind enemy lines, struggling to protect her identity. Singing as a barmaid while she plans her escape, a handsome Third Reich captain threatens everything she knows to be true about the enemy. Nazi Captain Michael Reiner isn’t who he claims to be. A British language expert turned spy, he discovers the truth about Claire, but he knows the importance of a secret. Struggling to resist his attraction to the songbird, he’s determined to complete his assignment, no matter the cost. His cover is threatened when a ruthless female Gestapo officer arrives hunting Resistance fighters. The raid forces Michael’s hand: complete the mission or save Claire. As the war threatens to tear them apart, they must rely on each other for survival. Is there hope—and a future—for an American songbird and a British spy?
The Songbird and the Spy is a fast paced WWII romantic adventure. There are many books set during this time. Maybe, because for those of us who didn't live through it, it is hard to imagine the atrocities others experienced. Or maybe the small acts of kindness, sacrifices and moments of good look so much brighter amidst the dark background of this period in tour history. I am usually quite moved by stories set during this war and holocaust. I like to find hope in a "hopeless" situation. This book delivered that message of hope. Claire experienced fear and loss and found love and meaning. I enjoyed this book and will be looking for others by J'Nell Ciesielski!
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Believing she was born in the wrong era, J’nell Ciesielski spends her days creating heart-stopping heroes, brave heroines, and adventurous exploits in times gone by. Winner of the Romance Through the Ages contest and Maggie Award, J’nell can often be found dreaming of a second home in Scotland, indulging in chocolate of any kind, or watching old black and white movies. Born a Florida girl, she now calls Virginia home, along with her very understanding husband, young daughter, and one lazy beagle. Find out more at www.jnellciesielski.com.
More from J’nellThe most popular question an author is asked is where did the inspiration come from. Most of the time, if not always, my inspiration comes from a trifecta of resources: movies, music, or books. A single song lyric, or secondary character, or novel setting can trigger a whole world of possibilities that has to be explored. In the case of Songbird and the Spy, it was a movie. A Quentin Tarantino movie to be exact set during WWII where one of the characters is a British officer posing as a Nazi meets up with other spies in a French bar. Another character was a Jewish woman posing as a theater owning Frenchwoman. My brain immediately tingled with ideas. What if identities were all in question? What if you fell in love with the wrong person? Not just the wrong person, but the enemy? The drama and tension in such a situation would be unbelievable! And that is how Songbird was born. Here are a few bits of trivia for you:
- Songbird was originally titled Iron Shepherd for Michael’s call sign.
- There have been three or four different endings written.
- Michael Reiner was based off of Michael (see what I did there?!) Fassbender’s character in Inglorious Basterds. The actor was born in Germany to German and Irish parents, and later grew up in Ireland J Art imitating life.
- Music always makes its way into my stories and here it takes center stage.
- I’ve always wanted to write a USO story so the ending was my perfect chance to squeeze it in.
- Ilsa von Ziegler was based off of Elsa Schneider from Indiana Jones.
- There was a scene showing Michael at SOE training in Scotland, but it was later cut.
- Nazi headquarters in Paris really was located on Foch Ave. The building is still there.
- The molten lead that Michael’s new assistant talks about is a German New Year’s tradition to divine fortune in the coming year. A small bit of lead or tin is melted, and then dropped in water. The form created by the metal predicts the future.
- Chanteuse is a female singer. Edith Piaf, the most famous French singer of all, was known as The Little Sparrow. Songbird and chanteuse are both used to reference Claire and pay homage to Piaf.
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