About Me I am a retired librarian and I now support books and authors through my reviews.

I have always loved to read and I was able to share that love through my work as a public librarian for 22 1/2 years. I now enjoy reading to my granddaughter and supporting authors through my reviews!

Thursday, August 13, 2020

The Rose and the Whip by Jae Hodges: Review & Giveaway with Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours



Publication Date: March 25, 2020
WordCrafts Press
Hardcover, Paperback, & eBook; 252 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction


Lidia Wardell walked naked through the Newbury meeting house. She was prosecuted, and publicly whipped for this crime.

This event is common historical knowledge. The Rose and the Whip is set in the Massachusetts Bay Colony in May 1663, but tells the entire story of systematic persecution of dissenters, by dissenters. Lidia relates the story of her life, and the series of events that culminated in her decision to take this action in protest of the Puritan community leaders’ treatment of Quakers. As she is charged, sentenced, and tied to the whipping post, then subsequently thrashed with twenty or thirty lashes, she critically examines each of these events and reflects on how they served to transform her and her perspectives on truth and faith.



This is riveting historical fiction! Author Jae Hodges transported me back to the seventeenth century to witness an event that I wasn't familiar with and I was almost able to feel the agony from the pain of those whips! The Rose and the Whip is told in the first person and Hodges uses both present and past events to share Lidia's life story. The sentence meted out for her decision to walk naked into a Newbury meeting house happens almost immediately, and Lidia learns that she will receive a severe whipping. The details of this whipping are graphically described in chapters such as The First Lash, when she barely feels the sting, and then later, Twenty-one Lashes, when she admits that "I was no longer able to flinch." These chapters alternate with the accounts of Lidia's marriage, the birth of her sons, and the realization that the Quakers were being persecuted for their different beliefs. 

The Rose and the Whip is a remarkable story of one woman's courage, strength, and determination and it chronicles the injustice that was present almost 400 years ago in a country famous for its search for religious freedom. As I learned Lidia Wardell's story I was amazed with the irony that the Puritans, who chose to punish the Quakers for their beliefs, were the very same people who had fled England because of their own religious persecution. This is a book that will make you think , and even question, just how much our society has really learned?

I received a copy of this book from the author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours. There was no obligation for a favorable review. These are my own thoughts. 

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Everyone has a history and a story. Jae uses the most alluring stories from the chronicles of her own ancestry and others around her to create timeless tales of everyday people making history. On her quest to capture the essence of walking in their footsteps, she travels and uses her pencil and camera lens to imagine them in their own surroundings.

Jae lives on the Tennessee River in Alabama with her husband and companion pooch.


Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, July 27

Wednesday, July 29

Thursday, July 30
Interview at Passages to the Past

Saturday, August 1

Wednesday, August 5

Friday, August 7

Wednesday, August 12
Review at Books and Zebras

Thursday, August 13
Review at Older & Smarter

Friday, August 14

Monday, August 17

Thursday, August 20
Review at Nurse Bookie


During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of The Rose and the Whip by Jae Hodges!  ENTER HERE

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on August 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is open to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

View all my reviews >

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Finding Home by Corinne Joy Brown: Book Tour, Review & Giveaway

For every girl or boy who owns a horse, or wished they did, “Finding Home” brings all the drama and beauty of America’s wild horses to the middle-grade reader.
A coming-of-age story and a tale about friendship, trust and understanding, both horse and owner have powerful lessons to learn. Together, young Jesse Nolan from Colorado and her wild mustang, Curly Girl, rounded up in Wyoming, discover what it means to rely on oneself, as well as those who love you most.
Buy the Book:
Finding Home
Amazon ~ B&N

“Born in the flatlands of Rock Springs, Wyoming, newborn mustang Pahaska tells the heart-wrenching story of her separation from her mother and the wild horse herd she was born into. Captured by strangers, her entire world has disintegrated. Penned in the filthy, manure-filled confines of a horse hauler’s trailer, her life is changed forever. Finding Home, a 2020 Spur Finalist for Juvenile Fiction, is a brilliantly written story about the adoption of the mustang “Curly Girl” by a teen who has always dreamed of having her own horse. Ginny McDonald’s illustrations convey fine detail and emotion in the images of the horses, bringing each one to life. This heart-warming tale will appeal to those with a love for animals.” - Joni Franks, RoundUp Magazine, Western Writers of America

“This beautifully written and illustrated book will appeal to any animal loving young reader. Differences (equine and otherwise) are applauded, working through complicated human relationships, a philosophical, well balanced approach to difficult issues (wild horse roundups), and positive animal training techniques are included in this educational, riveting new book!” - Nancy Sachs, Director Platte Valley Pony Club

“To see the world through the eyes of a newborn filly as she grows into adulthood, or an excited young girl in search of her first horse, is a treasure found in Corinne Joy Brown’s novel Finding Home, a story of loss and recovery told in a brilliant way. The illustrations by Ginny McDonald help to refine the wonderful writing which places the reader squarely in the experience of Curly Girl and Jesse, her adopter. Finding Home is a wonderful story for our time, in consideration of the wild horses whose freedom is threatened across the West and the people who adopt the captured ones into loving homes.” - James A. Holmes CEO and Executive Director, Cherokee Ranch and Castle Foundation

This is such a lovely book and even though it is written for ages 9-12, it's one that all ages will enjoy. Finding Home features the thoughts of two "girls", thirteen-year-old Jesse Nolan and a three-year-old filly who is named Curly Girl. They both have suffered separation from their families and finding each other offers them the chance to bond and to mend. Jesse's family was broken when her mom and dad separated two years ago and, working at her uncle's ranch in Wyoming during her summer break, she is given a chance to meet a beautiful horse with golden spirals. During a roundup, Curly Girl had been separated from her mother and other wild horses in their herd and taken to be sold at a special horse auction. As Jesse works to prove that she is trustworthy and capable of owning a horse, Curly Girl learns to trust this young girl caring for her, and they both are given the gifts of love, acceptance, and family.
"She was home and home felt good. Now I know the truth, thought Curly, with a satisfied munch. Home isn't only where you live or where you come from. Home is where you're loved."
This is a wonderful story for young horse lovers who yearn for their own horse but it also  speaks to those who are struggling with family issues or the pressures of growing up. Finding Home illustrates the need of both humans and animals to feel loved and protected, it shows that trust is sometimes hard to achieve, and it calls attention to the wild horses that still roam our western United States. Author Corinne Joy Brown eloquently shares the plight of these wild horses and the illustrations by Ginny McDonald are both beautiful and powerful! I highly recommend this heartwarming story!
I received a complimentary copy of this book but I was in no way obligated to write a positive review. These are my own thoughts.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Ginny McDonald is an award-winning, professional Colorado illustrator and a longtime advocate for wild horses. She is the adopter of an American Curly mare, and more recently, a second mustang named "Lil Bit". Ginny's skill in the use of Prismacolor pencils brings this story to life with rich detail and heartfelt emotion.

Author Corinne Joy Brown

Denver native Corinne Joy Brown is a multi-published, award-winning Colorado author, magazine editor and freelance writer focused on the West ." Recent publications include "Young Rider", "Cowboys & Indians," and "Working Ranch." She's also been a horse owner most of her life. Corinne is committed to teaching the next generation about the power of horses to teach and heal. "Finding Home" is her eighth book.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Facebook 

Tour Schedule:

Aug 3 -Locks, Hooks and Books – book review / giveaway
Aug 3  Corinne Rodrigues | Booksnista – book spotlight / giveaway
Aug 4 – fundinmental – book spotlight / giveaway
Aug 4 - Splashes of Joy – book review / guest post / author interview / giveaway
Aug 5 – Rockin' Book Reviews – book review / guest post / giveaway
Aug 5 - My Journey Back – book review / author interview / giveaway
Aug 6 – I'd Rather Be At The Beach – book review
Aug 7 - Books for Books – book spotlight
Aug 7 -Writer with Wanderlust – book review / giveaway
Aug 7 - Writer with Wanderlust - guest post
Aug 10 – Reading Authors Nework – book review / giveaway
Aug 11 – Jazzy Book Reviews – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Aug 11 -Priya's Lit Blog – book review / giveaway
Aug 12 – Older & Smarter? – book review
Aug 12 - Read and Review – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
Aug 13 - A Mama's Corner Of the World – book review / giveaway
Aug 13 – Stephanie Jane – book spotlight / giveaway
Aug 14 – Rosepoint Publishing – book review / giveaway
Aug 17 – authors.ace – book review
Aug 18 – Bound 4 Escape – book review / giveaway
Aug 18 - Sefina Hawke's Books – book spotlight
Aug 19 – Krisha's Cozy Corner – book review / guest post / giveaway
Aug 19 - Library of Clean Reads - book review / giveaway
Aug 20 – My Reading Journey – book review / guest post / giveaway
Aug 21 - Pen Possessed - book review / giveaway
Aug 21 – Svetlanas reads and views – book review
TBD –T's Stuff – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
Click HERE to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway and have a chance to win a $15 Amazon Gift Card!