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 promote literacy by reading, and then writing reviews. I love to support authors by sharing my reviews with others!

Tuesday, August 30, 2022

The Finding of Miss Fairfield (Aprons & Veils, #1) by Grace Hitchcock

The Finding of Miss Fairfield (Aprons & Veils, #1)

When an engagement of convenience becomes anything but convenient . . .

Forced into a betrothal with a widower twice her age, Charleston socialite, Sophia Fairfield is desperate for an escape. But, while her fiancé is away on business, he assigns his handsome stepson, Carver, the task of looking after his bride-to-be. Much to her dismay, Sophia finds herself falling in love with the wrong gentleman—a man society would never allow her to marry, given Sophia was supposed to be his new stepmother. The only way to save Carver from scandal and financial ruin is to run away, leaving him and all else behind to become a Harvey Girl waitress at the Castañeda Hotel in New Mexico.

Carver Ashton has had his life planned out for him since birth, but when he encounters Sophia Fairfield, he glimpses a new life—apart from his overbearing stepfather's business. But, when the woman he loves disappears before he can express his devotion, Carver abandons all to find her. However, his stepfather has other intentions for Sophia and will stop at nothing until she is his bride . . . even if it is against her will.


Poor Sophia Fairfield! She's long known the perks of coming from a wealthy family, but she's always been afraid. Afraid of displeasing her father and afraid of what other people think of her. And then, her father and Prescott Payne decide that she will become Prescott's bride and she reaches the end of her rope. He's twice her age, she doesn't love him, and this has to end. Somehow, she has to escape!

I fell in love with the history of the Harvey Girls many years ago, so I was especially excited to read this new book. The Finding of Miss Fairfield is an exciting, roller-coaster adventure that takes Sophia from Charleston to New Mexico to New Orleans after she decides to become a working girl. Author Grace Hitchcock gives readers a great cast of characters and a plot that is an engaging blend of romance, history, and inspiration. I look forward to more adventures with these Harvey Girls and I recommend The Finding of Miss Fairfield to all who enjoy historical Christian romance!

I received an ARC from the author and publisher. There was no obligation for a positive review. These are my own thoughts.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Grace Hitchcock is an award-winning author of multiple historical novels and novellas. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing and a Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in History. Grace lives in Baton Rouge with her husband, Dakota, son and daughter. 

Learn more by visiting her    Website      Facebook     Twitter

Friday, August 26, 2022

A Chat with Wanda E. Brunstetter

Is there a name that comes to mind when you think of Amish fiction? Well, if you're like many people. that name would be Wanda E. Brunstetter. She's been given the title of 'Amish Country's Most Beloved Storyteller' and a list of her books would definitely prove this. More than 12 million of her books have been sold and she often has titles on the New York Time Best-Seller list!

Recently, Ms. Brunstetter had an online visit with some of her Facebook fans and she's graciously allowed me to share that conversation with all of you.

First of all, how do you come up with ideas for your books and series?

    "Ideas come to me from several sources, such as things I have heard about or seen firsthand, spending time with our many Amish friends, things I have experienced in my own life, and of course, things that come from my imagination."

As you continue to write, is it harder to come up with more book ideas?

    "It could be, I suppose, because so many topics have already been covered. However, there is nothing new under the sun, and it’s sometimes just a matter of looking for ways to tell a story that’s already been done in some new way. In addition to that, there are new things happening all around me that often spark ideas for my novels."

The three books in The Amish Greenhouse series were very popular because of the mysteries involved. Are there any more mysteries in your future plans?

    "No, I currently don’t have a mystery series planned, but if a good idea for a mystery novel or series pops into my head, then I will definitely want to write it."

What about an Amish historical fiction?

    "I have written a historical novel about a Quaker woman that was titled Woman of Courage.  At this point, I haven't written a historical book about the Amish but maybe someday I will."

A few years ago, you wrote two books set in Hawaii, The Hawaiian Quilt and The Hawaiian Discovery. Do you plan more books set in Hawaii?

    "I don’t currently have any plans to set more stories in Hawaii, but if enough of my readers requested it, perhaps my publisher would be on board with the idea of me writing another book or series set on one of the Hawaiian Islands. I've been to Hawaii, but if I did another book set in Hawaii, I probably would make another trip there for inspiration. I know I would enjoy it. 🙂"

Wanda, your latest book is The Apple Creek Announcement, the third book in the Creektown Discoveries series. Will there be any more books featuring Orley and Lois Troyer?

    "No, there are just the 3 books in the Creektown series."

Do you have a favorite character in this series?

    "Lois Troyer is probably my favorite character from that series. She reminds me of some of the Amish women I know, and I borrowed her name from my cousin, Lois, who is fun-loving and has a positive attitude."

What is the message that you hope readers will receive from The Apple Creek Announcement?

    "I hope they will see the importance of honesty, forgiveness, and the necessity of seeking God’s will in every aspect of our lives."

Your Amish novels are so popular! Why do think this is true?

    "I believe it’s because reading novels about the Amish takes people to a more simple way of life. Like myself, readers are drawn to the Plain people’s peaceful lifestyle, sincerity, and close family ties, which is in stark contrast to the chaos and busyness that plagues so many modern “English” people today."

You've also co-authored a number of books with your daughter-in-law, Jean Brunstetter, and your granddaughter, Rachelle Brunstetter. Does it take longer to write a book by yourself or when co-writing with Jean and Richelle?

    "The majority of books that I write by myself are longer stories with about 100,000 words, so those take me longer than writing a shorter novella for a collection."

Wanda, you are such a prolific author! Do you know how many more books you plan to write? Any idea how much longer your fans can look forward to your books?

    "I am currently writing the second book in a new 3-book series, as well as a novella in a new collection that will be coming out in the fall of 2023. In addition to those books, I am contracted to write ten or more books within the next five years."

Chat participants were also interested in Ms. Brunstetter's personal life, including her favorite foods and her thoughts and observations about Amish customs.

Is there a favorite dish or meal that you like to prepare, and do you have a favorite holiday dessert?

    "I enjoy fixing Amish haystack and have served it many times to my family. Pumpkin pie is one of my favorites. I also make a no-sugar apple pie that’s really delicious."

Yum, these all sound delicious! Do you have an all-time favorite Amish recipe?

    "Lemon Shoofly Pie is a favorite, especially with my husband, who grew up in Pennsylvania and has eaten his share of several kinds of Shoofly Pie. We also like Funny-Cake pie which is a Mennonite tradition."

Will you share a favorite Simple Living Tip from the Amish?

    "At every Amish gathering I’ve ever been to, there’s been a lot of visiting going on. For the Amish, simple living involves spending time with their family and friends. I enjoy visiting with friends or family members without the distraction of TV in the background."

What about Amish traditions? Is there one that's especially intriguing?

    "One tradition I find particularly interesting is the way Amish bishops and ministers are chosen. Instead of going through seminary or a home-study course, and then being called to a church by a vote from the church board, like many of our English churches do, Amish ministers are chosen by the drawing of lots."

FINALLY, do you have a suggestion about becoming friends, or even a pen pal, with someone who is Amish?

    "If you live in or have plans to visit Amish country, it's easy to befriend an Amish family by visiting places they go, like bulk food stores in the area, farmers' markets, farm stands where the Amish are selling their local produce, or any of the stores run by Amish people. If you don't live in Amish country or have any way to visit the places where they live, I would suggest taking out an ad in one of the newspapers read by the Amish, such as The Budget, a newspaper in Sugarcreek, Ohio."

Thank you for allowing me to share your thoughts today. It's such a pleasure to learn more about the person responsible for the books that we all love to read!


New York Times bestselling author Wanda E. Brunstetter is one of the founders of the Amish fiction genre. With over 12 million copies sold, Wanda's stories consistently earn spots on the nation's most prestigious bestseller lists and receive numerous awards.

When Wanda visits her Amish friends, she finds herself drawn to their peaceful lifestyle, sincerity, and family ties. She and her husband, Richard, have been blessed with two grown children, six grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

To learn more about Wanda, visit her  Website  Facebook  Twitter  Pinterest


Thursday, August 25, 2022

The Apple Creek Announcement (Creektown Discoveries #3) by Wanda E. Brunstetter

The Apple Creek Announcement

An Artist Seeks Her Birth Mother
Welcome to Apple Creek, Ohio, where a piano teacher has a fascination with painting the rural Amish landscapes around her home.
Andrea Wagner has made it to her thirties feeling like she has had a charmed life and finally has fallen in love with Brandon Prentice, a local veterinarian. But then she discovers she was adopted—and all she thought she knew about herself has crumbled. Andrea becomes so fixated on finding her birth mother that she pushes Brandon away.
A friend suggests Andrea write to the “Dear Caroline” column in the newspaper for romance advice, and she finds herself revealing her issues with being adopted in the letter. “Dear Caroline” receives the letter but struggles to find the right advice given her own conflicted past.
What will Andrea lose before she finds herself again?


Andrea Wagner seems to have a wonderful life! She enjoys teaching piano lessons, she loves to paint, and she is planning her wedding to a veterinarian. And then, she learns that she was adopted and her whole life suddenly seems a lie! As I read The Apple Creek Announcement, I wondered how I would feel. Would I feel betrayed? Would I want to find my birth parents?

Author Wanda E. Brunstetter concludes the Creektown Discoveries series with a moving and thought-provoking novel that introduces Andrea and her fiance Brandon Prentice, and offers a reunion with Orley and Lois Troyer. The Troyers are still eager to help people in need of advice and friendship so is it any wonder that they feel drawn to Andrea and her predicament? There is, however, a secret that's been hidden for many years, and it appears to be a life changer for many people! Will Orley and Lois be able to offer Andrea the advice and support that she needs?

Brunstetter once again gives readers a story that is both entertaining and inspiring. I think we often associate the Amish with simple, trouble-free lives but she reminds us that they certainly aren't exempt from problems and heartache. They do, however, believe that God will help them work them out and they choose to fully trust Him to do so. The Apple Creek Announcement is a perfect example of their convictions and it's a wonderful way to conclude this series.

I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher. There was no obligation for a positive review. These are my own thoughts.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



New York Times bestselling author Wanda E. Brunstetter is one of the founders of the Amish fiction genre. With over 12 million copies sold, Wanda's stories consistently earn spots on the nation's most prestigious bestseller lists and receive numerous awards.

When Wanda visits her Amish friends, she finds herself drawn to their peaceful lifestyle, sincerity, and family ties. She and her husband, Richard, have been blessed with two grown children, six grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

To learn more about Wanda, visit her  Website  Facebook  Twitter  Pinterest

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Twin Murder Mix-Up by Sami A. Abrams

Twin Murder Mix-Up

A case of mistaken identity…has lethal results

After capturing a murder on her camera, photographer Amy Baker becomes the next target—but her identical twin is killed instead. Now on the run with her sister’s newborn, Amy has only one person to turn to—Detective Keith Young, her childhood crush. But when they discover Keith is the baby’s father, can he regain Amy’s trust to keep them safe…before the killer strikes again?

From Love Inspired Suspense: Courage. Danger. Faith.


Mercy me, this book is a page-turner, with its riveting story that is filled with mistakes, secrets, and surprises! Amy Baker's twin-sister Stacey was killed by mistake because Amy was the target. Amy's long-time crush spent one night with Stacey and now, there's a baby that he didn't know existed. There's someone determined to kill Amy but finding his/her identity is the biggest surprise of all!

The danger, twists, and turns seem unending in this thrilling addition to the Deputies of Anderson County series but author Sami A. Abrams weaves a poignant faith message into her story. Amy and Keith Young are shown that forgiveness is vital, but it must first begin with being able to forgive yourself. They also learn that love involves putting others first and the journey may not end the way you want it to. Fans of romantic suspense, you don't want to miss Twin Murder Mix-Up!

I received a copy of this book from the author. There was no obligation for a positive review. These are my own thoughts.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Sami Abrams grew up hating to read. It wasn’t until her 30’s that she found authors that captured her attention. Now, most evenings you can find her engrossed in a Romantic Suspense. In her opinion, a crime and a little romance is the recipe for a great story.

She lives in Northern California, but she will always be a Kansas girl at heart. She has a love of sports, family, and travel. However, a cabin at Lake Tahoe writing her next story is definitely at the top of her list.

Sami's debut novel, Buried Cold Case Secrets, released in December 2021. She has since written Impending Strike, book 2 of the Elite Guardians Collection,

If you love romantic suspense, go to Sami's website and sign up for her newsletter to get the inside scoop at samiaabrams.com

Learn more at Sami's       Website    Facebook     Twitter     Instagram     


Twin Murder Mix-Up

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Once Upon a Farmhouse by Angie Dicken

Once Upon a Farmhouse

The prodigal granddaughter has returned

And the love from her past is waiting

Helping her grandmother sell the farm and escaping back to Chicago are all Molly Jansen wants out of this trip—not to reunite with her ex. Single father Jack Behrens will always be the man who broke her heart even if he is the current tenant farmer. But turning Jack and his son out—and not catching feelings for them—might prove more difficult than she realized… 

From Love Inspired: Uplifting stories of faith, forgiveness, and hope.


Oh, how I loved this story of a 'prodigal granddaughter' reluctantly turning home and being shown just what she lost by leaving! Molly Jansen left Polk Center to find fame and fortune as an architect in Chicago and she was well on her way until she returned home to help her grandmother deal with her husband's death. What she didn't count on was the flood of memories that wash over her, and finding that the person who broke her heart as a teenager is now her grandmother's farm manager. So many emotions...why didn't she return while her grandfather was still alive? How can she deal with working with Jack Behrens, if only for a few weeks?

Molly, Jack, and Gran are special characters, but a sick little boy named Tate grabbed my heart and wouldn't let go. I also loved the farm setting and the major role that Molly's grandparents played in her life. Author Angie Dickens totally captures Molly's confusion and Jack's realization that old feelings can be dormant and then blossom again. This is a wonderful story of second chances, believing that God has a plan, and trusting Him to help you along the path. Once Upon a Farmhouse is a heartwarming, inspiring story and I highly recommend it to all who enjoy contemporary romance!

I received a copy of this book from the author but there was no obligation for a positive review. These are my own thoughts.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars 


Angie Dicken credits her love of story to reading British literature during life as a military kid in Cambridgeshire, England. Now living in the U.S., she's an ACFW member, a blog contributor to the Writer's Alley, a baseball mom, and a self-proclaimed foodie. 

You can learn about her new releases by visiting her Website 

Sunday, August 21, 2022

Amish Jane Doe by Shelley Shepard Gray


He left her without a word…

Now he needs her help to catch a killer

Escaping his Amish community as a teen was about survival, but leaving meant breaking LizBeth Troyer’s heart. Now Detective Jackson Lapp is working a cold case—and the clue to a murdered Amish girl’s identity leads him back to his hometown. Can Jackson and LizBeth rebuild their broken trust and work together to catch a killer before another young Amish woman is murdered?



The cover and title of this new book are attention grabbers, for sure, and the story that unfolds inside is equally compelling! Who was the young Amish woman who was found murdered in a seedy motel two years ago and why do the clues lead back to Berlin, Ohio? Cincinnati police Detective Jackson Lapp returns to his hometown after a twelve-year absence determined to learn the victim's identity and uncover the killer. His findings, however, may be more than he ever bargained for! His high school sweetheart still lives in Berlin and the old feelings they once shared may not have ended after all!

Amish Jane Doe is a wonderful mixture of Amish values, engaging suspense, and second chances. Multiple twists and turns, a killer who is a total surprise, and a heartwarming theme of faith, family, and forgiveness make this a book that I couldn't put down. Shelley Shepard Gray once again proves her unique talent and I'm hoping that she will share more Cold Case Files with us.

I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher. There was no obligation for a positive review.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Shelley Shepard Gray has published over seventy novels. She currently writes Amish romances for Harper Collins, Kensington, and Simon & Schuster and contemporary women’s fiction for Blackstone Publishing.

Before writing romances, Shelley lived in Texas and Colorado, where she taught school and earned both her bachelor’s degree in English literature and elementary education and later obtained her master’s degree in educational administration. She currently lives in Colorado Springs and writes full-time. Shelley is married, the mother of two young adults and she is an active member of her church.

Learn more about Shelley at her    Website     Facebook 
                                                       Twitter       Pinterest    Instagram  

This is Shelley's 2nd Cold Case File. Please check out my review of Widow's Secrets.

View all my reviews

Friday, August 19, 2022

The Wrong Side of Murder by Lauren Carr: Book Tour & Giveaway with iRead Book Tours


Join us for this tour from August 1 to August 26, 2022!

Book Details:

Book TitleThe Wrong Side of Murder (A Nikki Bryant Cozy Mystery) by Lauren Carr
Category:  Adult Fiction (18 +),  274 pages
Genre:  Mystery/Cozy Mystery
Publisher:  Acorn Book Services
Release date:   July 21, 2022
Content Rating: This cozy mystery is rated G for everyone!

The Wrong Side of Murder is another wonderful cozy mystery by author Lauren Carr. It has all the elements that draw me in - an intelligent female lead, an equally smart boyfriend who partners to help her, a complicated plot where clues are slowly revealed, people who aren't what they seem to be, comedic moments to balance the darker ones, and several quirky pets full of personality.  

It's a wonderful book to escape into at the end of the day. And get ready to read into the wee hours as, if you're like me, you won't be able to stop reading until the mystery is revealed.  
- Marilyn R. Wilson, Olio by Marilyn
Nikki's an intense individual who makes the perfect investigative journalist. She wants answers yesterday and she is willing to dig in to get them. She might get it wrong at the beginning but with the help of her family and close friends, she'll get the answers she wants and needs. – review by Blooming with Books

Book Description:

Nikki Bryant’s Next Case Takes Her to the Wrong Side of Murder

One spring morning, Jodi Gibbons got up and went to school as she did every day. Her young life went sideways though when the police found that her mother had been brutally killed during the night.

Twenty years later, many in Pine Grove believe Jodi got away with murder. After all, how could she have possibly slept through her mother’s violent death in the very next room?
After decades of silence, Jodi accepts investigative journalist Nikki Bryant’s invitation to tell her side of the story. However, before the interview can take place, someone silences Jodi permanently.

Now it is up to Nikki Bryant and her friends to uncover the secret that Jodi Gibbons has been protecting—a secret someone believes it is worth killing to keep from being revealed.

Buy the Book:
add to goodreads


The Wrong Side of Murder is another cozy mystery featuring Nikki Bryant and she is delightful! She's smart and determined, with an amazing knack for solving mysteries. She also has a terrific boyfriend and a dog who's a media star. Some of the best moments occur when her boxer Elmo is a part of the action! Yes, murder can be serious but author Lauren Carr understands that we all need a little humor to lighten our moods!

Fantastic characters and a well-written, entertaining story that kept me turning the pages---this is the promise in choosing this author's mysteries. The Wrong Side of Murder has more than one murder and just when I thought I had one figured out, another clue would pop up and I was back where I started! Carr kept me guessing with multiple plot twists but she never failed to connect the dots and she definitely entertained.

Nikki and Ryan Spaulding are a perfect couple and I'm hoping that their romance will continue to progress. I recommend The Wrong Side of Murder to all who enjoy cozy mysteries and I look forward to more adventures in the Nikki Bryant Cozy Mystery series.

I received a copy of this book from the author via iRead Book Tours. There was no obligation for a positive review.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Killer Deadline by Lauren Carr: Book Review & Giveaway with iRead Book Tours

 Join us for this tour from August 1 to August 26, 2022!

Be Sure to Check Out the First Installment in the Nikki Bryant Cozy Mysteries: 

Book Details:

Book TitleKiller Deadline (A Nikki Bryant Cozy Mystery) by Lauren Carr
Category:  Adult Fiction (18 +),  232 pages
Genre:  Mystery/Cozy Mystery
Publisher:  Acorn Book Services
Release date:   April 23, 2020
Content Rating: This cozy mystery is rated G for Everyone!

I love this cozy mystery! It is full of suspense, action packed, fast pace with that small town feeling. I love the characters, I have to admit, I fell in love with Elmo on the spot! I loved Nikki's spunk and determination. She keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire book! I highly recommend this book to those who loves a good cozy mystery!! - 5-Star Review at Splashes of Joy 

Book Description:

​Folks in Pine Grove, Pennsylvania, claim that where Nikki Bryant goes, trouble is not far behind. Her refusal to back down from a challenge has made Nikki Bryant a top investigative journalist.

When an online friend nudges her to join him in a pact to reconnect with their first loves, Nikki and her boxer dog Elmo leave the bright lights of Las Vegas for the charming town of Pine Grove. There, she must face the biggest challenges in her career and life—the first love she had left behind and her father’s unsolved murder.

But before she has time to unpack her car, Nikki stumbles upon the dead body of local news anchor, Ashleigh Addison, her childhood rival. Could Ashleigh’s death be connected to an explosive news story that she had teased about airing live? Did that explosive story have anything to do with the murder of Nikki’s father?

With the clues in her father’s cold case hot again, Nikki intends to chase down the story of her life until she catches his killer—no matter what it takes.

 Buy the Book:
Amazon.com ~ Audible ~ BookBub
Add to Goodreads

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

You'll Be Mine: A Hearts Bend Novel by Mandy Boerma & Rachel Hauck

You'll Be Mine

A return to the past sparks a new future...

International hotel manager Ben Carter is not sticking around Hearts Bend. He's just home to sell the inn he inherited from his grandparents. The place holds all his best memories-especially the ones that include regular summer guest Cami Jackson. But she's been out of his life for years, and she's not coming back...

Real estate developer Cami Jackson is ready to take over as VP of her father's company. When the Hearts Bend Inn comes on the market, she wants to swoop it up, if only because of the sweet memories of her favorite summers. The last thing she expects to find is her first love back to sign on the dotted line.

But for her father, the inn holds memories of a terrible tragedy, and he wants to kill the deal. An impulsive decision could turn into a lost-but-found dream...but only if Ben and Cami can keep the past from tearing them apart-again.

A heart-healing story of second chances set in the charming town of Hearts Bend!


There have been many special visits to Hearts Bend, Tennessee and this book takes us back one more time. You'll Be Mine is a tale of sweet romance, second chances, and letting go of the past, Ben Carter gave Cami Jackson her first kiss in Hearts Bend but their careers have taken them both in different directions. Now, fifteen years later, they're back in town and facing decisions that may forever impact their futures. Will they seek God's help in making these fateful decisions? Was that first kiss ever truly forgotten?

Veteran author Rachel Hauck and newcomer Mandy Boerma have written a delightful story of hope and forgiveness. I recommend You'll Be Mine to all who enjoy contemporary Christian romance.

I received a copy of this book from Sunrise Publishing. There was no obligation for a positive review.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


When Mandy Boerma isn’t hanging out at her favorite coffee shop writing, she’s a busy mom. After meeting Prince Charming, they started their own version of Happily Ever in the Florida Panhandle. Nothing compares to life at the beach. While those early days included romantic sunset walks with sand between our toes, days are now filled with sandcastles, swimming and school. Mom-duties fill Mandy’s days. You know them all— cooking, cleaning, chauffeuring, organizing, helping at school, all the lessons and practices, homework, etc. And because that’s not enough, she also teaches piano, normally with coffee in hand.

Learn more by visiting her  Website 
Follow Mandy on   Facebook     Twitter     Instagram

New York Times, USA Today & Wall Street Journal Bestselling author Rachel Hauck writes from sunny central Florida. A RITA finalist and winner of Romantic Times Inspirational Novel of the Year, and Career Achievement Award, she writes vivid characters dealing with real life issues. Readers have fallen in love with the quaint and loveable small town of Hearts Bend, TN introduced in the NYT bestselling The Wedding Dress which launched her Wedding Collection novels. Visit her at www.rachelhauck.com.



One Fine Day

You'll Be Mine

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Monday, August 15, 2022

Enflamed (Knights of Brethren #5) by Jody Hedlund

Enflamed (Knights of Brethren #5)

During a time when legends were born . . .


The most beautiful noblewoman in the kingdom, the lowly knight who can never have her, and the forbidden love they share.

When Sylvi Prestegard discovers that her father has arranged for her to marry a wealthy nobleman known for his thieving ways, she’s desperate to avoid the union. She turns to her childhood friend Espen, a Knight of Brethren, counting on his loyalty and kindness to help her escape.

Espen has been given an urgent mission to locate the holy lamp, an ancient relic necessary to defeat the enemy invading their country. In addition to his royal quest, he’s determined to protect Sylvi, the woman he’s always secretly loved. When she suggests the two of them marry to thwart her father’s plans, Espen cannot deny her request.

As they search for the holy lamp, Lord Prestegard pursues them, intent on reclaiming his daughter. With Espen’s life at stake, Sylvi must conspire to save them both. Will they be able to overcome the obstacles that stand between them, or are the flames of their forbidden love destined to be extinguished?

The real story of the Holy Lamp . . .


'If I had to listen to my friends speak of their wives one more second, I was going to heave.'

I laughed as I read this first sentence of Enflamed but it didn't take long to realize that even though Epsen wasn't married, he was surely infatuated! This is a story to enjoy and savor, with two characters who stole my heart, and an adventure that spurred my imagination. A gallant knight, a beautiful maiden, and deplorable villains determined to overtake Norvegia are all a part of the thrilling search for the Holy Lamp.

Author Jody Hedlund shares a heart-pounding adventure with numerous twists, turns, and extreme danger but it's enhanced by a breathtaking romance between Espen and Sylvi. In the first four books of the Knights of Brethren series, there have been four knights who found true love, but how will this be possible for Espen and Sylvi? He thinks himself unworthy of her and she believes that he only sees her as his friend's little sister! And then, as they battle to find the Holy Lamp, the magic begins. Swoon-worthy moments, incredible chemistry, and personal sacrifices become a testament to their unconditional love but there are so many odds against them!

Hedlund never fails to weave a faith message in her stories and there are many nuggets of inspiration in Enflamed. There's also the classic trope of 'friends to more' and a cliff-hanger ending that promises even more excitement ahead. If you enjoy medieval tales and romantic adventure, do yourself a favor and grab a copy of this book!

I received a digital copy of this book from the author. There was no obligation for a favorable review.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Jody Hedlund is the best-selling author of over twenty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award. She lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy teens, and five spoiled cats.

When she’s not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate.  

Learn more at Jody's Website     

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Sunday, August 14, 2022

A Quilt for Christmas by Melody Carlson

A Quilt for Christmas

Christmas should be celebrated with family. But for Vera Swanson, that's not an option this year. Widowed and recently relocated, she is lonely in her condo-for-one--until little Fiona Albright knocks on her door needing help. With her mother seriously ill and her father out of town, Fiona enlists Vera's help, and when she finds out her new neighbor is a quilter, she has a special request--a Christmas quilt for Mama.

Vera will have to get a ragtag group of women together in order to fulfill the request. Between free-spirited artist Tasha, chatty empty nester Beverly, retired therapist Eleanor, and herself, Vera has hopes that Christmas for the Albright family will be merry, after all--and she may find herself a new family of friends along the way.

Bestselling and award-winning author Melody Carlson invites you to cuddle up this holiday season with this cozy story of giving, forgiving, and a little bit of romance.


'Vera Swanson used to love Christmas.' This was before she became a widow living in a city where everyone was a stranger. Christmas was now a day to be dreaded until a knock on the door offers her a reason to love Christmas again. A scared little girl and her suddenly ill mother quickly give Vera a new purpose for her life!

Four-year-old Fiona Albright is absolutely adorable so it's no surprise that Vera agrees to help her and her family and that she also finds it difficult to refuse Fiona's request to make a quilt for her mother. Vera finds help for this Herculean task in the form of three complete strangers who are her complete opposites and soon realizes that 'God had stitched them together in love'.

It's become a tradition for me to read Melody Carlson's annual Christmas offering and this novella certainly didn't disappoint. It's a heartwarming story that gave me all of the feels of the holiday season, as I visualized the beautiful decorations, imagined the tantalizing aromas, and experienced the joy that comes from friendship and love. A Quilt for Christmas is a lovely gift for readers!

I received a review copy courtesy of Revell through Interviews & Reviews for my honest opinion.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars 


Melody Carlson is the award-winning author of over two hundred books, several of them Christmas novellas from Revell, including her much-loved and bestselling book, The Christmas Bus.

She also writes many teen books, including the Diary of a Teenage Girl series, the TrueColors series, and the Carter House Girls series.

Melody was nominated for a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award in the inspirational market for her books, including the Notes from a Spinning Planet series and Finding Alice, which is in production as a Lifetime Television movie. She and her husband serve on the Young Life adult committee in central Oregon.

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