December 2017 New Releases!

December 2017 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

 

Contemporary:

Rebecca’s Redemption by Lee Carver — A nurse seeking redemption for past sins joins a doctor contending against the jungle. Both healers need healing. (Contemporary, Independently Published)

 

Contemporary Romance:

The Christmas Baby by Lisa Carter — Mistletoe Mommy Anna Reyes is pregnant and widowed, and a Christmas homecoming isn’t so simple. Reuniting with her best friend, Ryan Savage, makes it easier—even though she knows he’ll soon be leaving their small coastal hometown. After putting his career on hold for his family’s business, Ryan’s finally ready to pursue his goals. But as he and Anna work to make the holidays special for a group of at-risk kids, Ryan wonders if he can give up one dream for another. They’re determined to make this a Christmas to remember, but can Ryan and Anna also make their holiday family last forever? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

You’re Gonna Love Me by Robin Lee Hatcher — Nick’s love of thrills and danger and Samantha’s love of safety and security drove them apart two years ago. After her worst fears came true, can they build something new upon the ashes of the past? (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

A Christmas Kind of Perfect by Christine Schimpf — Conrad Hamilton thought his life would be easy. A great job running his own construction business, living in his hometown in Door County, Wisconsin, with Lila Clark by his side. He planned on marrying her as soon as she returned from her Chicago internship but it never happened.

Lila never expected to become a successful writer nor did she plan on spending the last decade in New York. But she did. Can the magic of Christmas turn two hearts back to one another again or is it too late to capture that special kind of perfect? (Contemporary Romance from Prism Christian Publishing)

Under the Mistletoe: A Christian Christmas Anthology by Jenna Brandt, Lorana Hoopes, Carol E. Keen, Elle E. Kay, Mary C. Findley, Judith Robl, Evangeline Kelly, C.J. Samuels — Christmas is the time when families get together and love abounds. Eight inspirational authors have teamed up to bring you 8 wonderful Christmas novellas sure to bring you joy this season. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Making Spirits Bright by Cathe Swanson, Chautona Havig, Toni Shiloh, April Hayman — Christmas is a season for new beginnings and second chances. A time for hope and joy and laughter. A time for people of all ages to find love and come together in community. Making Spirits Bright is a collection of just such stories – four never-before-published inspirational Christmas novellas. From romance to cozy mystery, with a generous dash of humor, these contemporary stories are sure to warm your heart as well as brighten your season and lift your Christmas spirit. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

 

Historical Romance:

 

The Calico and Cowboys Romance Collection by Mary Connealy — The Old West comes to life under the talented pen of bestselling author Mary Connealy. Enjoy a lighthearted ride alongside seven historical and one contemporary cowboys and the women who tame their hearts. (Historical/Contemporary Romance Novella from Barbour Publishing)

 

Would-Be Mistletoe Wife by Christine Johnson — Worried she might lose her teaching job if funding is cut for her boarding school, widow Louise Smythe must consider marriage. But the only prospective groom in town is lighthouse-keeper Jesse Hammond, and he wants children–something she may never be able to provide. While Jesse waits for the ideal woman to make his wife, though, Louise can’t help but long for something more than his friendship. If he wants to be promoted to head lighthouse keeper, Jesse needs to find a wife suited to his rustic lifestyle. But as he and Louise partner to give the town’s homeless orphans a joyous holiday, he’s drawn to the petite woman. Will the light of Christmas finally inspire them to trust in each other’s hearts? (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

 

Circle of Blessings by Deborah Raney — A young college student is determined to win the love of her English professor at the university in the Dakota Territory where she is studying to be an architect. (Historical Romance from Raney Day Press)

 

Historical:

Return to Bella Terra by MaryAnn Diorio — When she receives word that her mother is terminally ill, Maria Landro Tonetta travels to her Sicilian homeland with her son Nico. She finds herself yearning for the life she once knew as a child on Bella Terra, the family farm, now on the verge of bankruptcy. Caught between two worlds, Maria dreams of moving back to Sicily with her husband and children to save the farm. When, however, Nico’s biological father unexpectedly appears at Mama’s funeral, Maria faces a new enemy to her dream.

But is there an even greater enemy within her own soul? (Historical, Independently Published)

Brides of Minnesota by Lena Nelson Dooley — Follow a Swedish family’s journey as they settle in Minnesota where each brother seeks a living—and wife. (Historical from Barbour Publishing)

 

Mystery:

Guilt by Association by Heather Day Gilbert — When the dead body of an overdosed teen turns up next to Tess Spencer’s mom’s trailer, it’ll take a miracle to keep Tess from becoming a casualty in her own personal war on drugs. (Mystery, ACFW Qualified Independently Published)

 

Romantic Suspense:

Imperfect Justice by Cara Putman — The police say the woman was a murderer. Emilie Wesley knows they can’t be talking about her client . . . can they? (Romantic Suspense from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

Holiday Secrets by Susan Sleeman — When his ex is thrust into the crosshairs of a deadly syndicate, FBI agent Gavin McKade will do whatever it takes to protect her. Even work the case with his stubborn sheriff dad. As if protecting Lexie from professional killers isn’t difficult enough, the unlikely reunion has rekindled their complicated romantic connection. But if Gavin can’t untangle Lexie from this dangerous web, the blurring line between duty and love may not matter…because this Christmas could be their last. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

 

Speculative:

The Redemption of Jedidiah Pinkney by J.R. Pitts — A crippled and bullied young boy finds redemption and healing after an encounter with Jesus. (Speculative from Ambassador International)

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World War 2 History strong in Fruitcake Fallout — Paula Moldenhauer

Today I’m happy to welcome author Paula Moldenhauer as she discusses her latest release, Fruitcake Fallout.

Thank you for joining us on History Through the Ages to talk about the historical content in your latest release, Fruitcake Fallout. There’s a lot of historic detail in this book. How much of it is true?

I tried very hard make the story as historically accurate as possible. Over and over I’d be typing along and stop to Google a picture of the clothing I wanted to describe or to check a detail. For example I wanted Willie and Evie (the stories hero and heroine) to wear “Dress Blues” in one scene, but then I thought I’d better check that fact. Turns out that the army discontinued making the dress blue uniform during WW II as a money and time-saving measure. So I had to put them in their “Class A” uniforms instead.

Another time I wanted Willie to wash new cars at his job after the war ended, but I discovered the manufacturing of automobiles ended in 1942 and didn’t begin again until the last quarter of 1945. One advertising slogan in 1945 said, “There’s a Ford in your future!” The automobile industry wanted the public to remember them!

If I missed a historic detail, it wasn’t for lack of effort!

Your book includes a lovely story of a German woman, Inga, helping Willie on Christmas during the Battle of the Bulge, but it’s hard to believe something like that actually happened. Did it?

Believe or not, it did! This was one of those great “God moments” for me. I was thinking about the famous Christmas truce in 1914 and went digging to see if anything like that happened in WW II. I came across an article entitled, “A Small Christmas Truce.” I cried when I read it, and I knew Willie and his army buddy Lawrence needed their own special Christmas moment. I wrote the scene with a desire to honor the real mother and son, Elisabeth and Fritz, and the God who is always working, even in the darkest of places.

Mine is a fictionalized account. I changed the names and took liberties with the details, but wanted you to know that something this beautiful actually happened in 1944 during the Battle of the Bulge when some American soldiers were lost in the Ardennes Forest. I encourage you to read the true story, which can be found at: https://owlcation.com/humanities/About-World-War-2-A-Small-Christmas-Truce. I’ll share one beautiful fact from the TRUE story. The son, Fritz, eventually tried to find the soldiers his mother took care of that night. After years of searching he found one of the Americans in a nursing home in Frederick, Maryland, and they were reunited! The article said, “Fritz flew to Frederick in January 1996 and met with Ralph Blank, one of the American soldiers who still had the German compass and map. Ralph told Fritz ‘Your mother saved my life.’ Fritz said the reunion was the high point of his life.”

Any other historical detail you’d like to bring out?

One more favorite find during research was an article about a young boy who worked for Western Union during the war. I’d never considered how difficult that job was. Telegrams from Western Union were the primary way that family back home was notified of the loss of their loved one far off on the Western Front or in the South Pacific. The article I read was about Dewey Alley, who at sixteen was a bicycle courier for Western Union. There are a lot of heroes out there, and not all of them served overseas. This man is one of them in my book. His story made me cry—again. I loved writing Fruitcake Fallout, and it has a very happy ending. I also love the nuggets like this that I found doing research, but yes, I’ve done a lot of crying. I really encourage you to check out his story: www.newsobserver.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/josh-shaffer/article183874711.html

Did you just say, “in my book?” Isn’t that slang from the 1940s?

It is! And I’ve used it for years. That just goes to show how long some phrases live on in our language. In that last question I talked about crying a lot. Playing with the slang of the 40s was one of my great delights. I just love calling the girls “birds” and having Evelyn’s best friend want to give someone a “knuckle sandwich.” Here’s one of my favorites: ducky shincracker. Any guess what that one means?

Women weren’t allowed to serve in the armed forces before World War II. How did society respond to this idea?

My heroine, Evelyn served as a WAC. The WACs were courageous women who were willing to step outside of traditional roles to serve their country. I interviewed a real-life WAC, Ruth Keal, as I researched for this story. My friend Ruth never complained, but other research indicated that not everyone was comfortable with women serving in the armed forces. These brave women were sometimes accused of everything from being job-stealers to being women of low morals. But as they faced the judgment and served faithfully, their character spoke for itself. The respect for WACs grew. When Ruth first “joined up,” she would have joined the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps (WAAC), but during her time of service the female troops were converted to full military status and renamed the Women’s Army Corps (WAC). Today the troops are integrated. There is no longer a separate branch for women. Women like Ruth enjoy full veteran benefits today.

Why did you station your heroine at Fort Riley, Kansas?

Originally Evelyn was stationed in New York City. I wanted to get her far away from her Colorado home and put her in an unfamiliar environment, but I had trouble verifying details, like what her housing would be like. Then I discovered that some of the WACS stationed in the Big Apple were scientists who were involved in the very secret work of the Manhattan Project! That story line has huge possibilities—but I knew it would take over the story I’d already established. As I thought about how to handle the issue, my friend Ruth agreed to help me with historical research. Ruth was stationed at Fort Riley, Kansas. After gleaning a lot of wonderful details from Ruth’s true-life story, I moved the birds to Fort Riley, Kansas, where Ruth passed her time during the war. I’ve included notes from my interview with Ruth at the end of Fruitcake Fallout. I think you’ll enjoy seeing where pieces of her true story intersect with the fictional characters in the story.

Where can I find Fruitcake Fallout? Tell us a little more about the book.

Fruitcake Fallout is part of a novella collection releasing this holiday season. It’s a story with a lot of spunk, but it also has some deep moments, as is necessary for a book set during World War 2. I laughed and cried as I wrote. I expect readers will likely do the same. Fruitcake Fallout can be purchased on Kindle as a single title, or as part of the larger collection, Tinseled Tidings, in paperback. You can get information on both options at: https://www.amazon.com/Tinseled-Tidings-3-Book-Series/dp/B077BWG77T

Here’s a summary of the story:

Fruitcake Fallout ~ Family legend says that the Preston fruitcake recipe makes young couples fall in love. But when Evelyn Preston, a WAC serving her country during World War II, sends one to her high school crush stationed overseas, she snags the wrong private! Willie Baxter is a one-woman-man, and it is clear from the kind, friendly letters Evelyn sends that she is exactly what he’s looking for. The problem is she thinks she’s corresponding with someone else! When he tries to clear up the unintentional deception, will Evie give his poor smitten heart a chance?

 

 

 

About Paula:

Author, speaker, and mom of four, Paula Moldenhauer encourages others to live free to flourish. She shares her message speaking at womens events, and it permeates her written work. Paula has published over 300 times in non-fiction markets and has a devotional book series, Soul Scents.Her first published novella,Youre a Charmer Mr. Grinch, was a finalist in the ACFW Carol Awards. Her most recent publication, At Home with Daffodils, is included in Barbours A Bouquet of Brides collection which releases January of 2018. Paula served as ACFW Colorado coordinator and was on the founding board of the first local ACFW chapter in Colorado. Paula and her husband, Jerry, are adjusting to a sometimes-empty nest in Colorado. They treasure time with their growing family of adult children, spouses, and spouses-to-be. Paula loves peppermint ice cream, going barefoot, and adventuring with friends. Visit her at www.paulamoldenhauer.com

https://www.facebook.com/PaulaMoldenhauerAuthor/

https://twitter.com/PaulaMoldenhaue

https://www.linkedin.com/in/paulamoldenhauer/

amazon.com/author/paulamoldenhauer

It’s for a Good Cause — Linda Shenton Matchett

Today I’m happy to welcome author Linda Shenton Matchett as she discusses an interesting piece of history that had an impact on her story.

How would you respond if the government told you they were taking over your house and you had to vacate the premises? And by the way, they don’t know how long they’ll need the property. Oh, and you have three days to pack up and leave.

But it’s for a good cause.

Sure, it is.

I don’t know that I would be gracious and amenable about the situation. However, I don’t live in a country that is waiting in fear of invasion by another country, as England was during WWII.

According to Requisitioned, a book by John Martin Robinson, “the majority of houses of large size in Britain were requisitioned by the government…for use as barracks, homes for evacuees, schools, hospitals, works of art stores, strategic and military headquarters, billets and training premises, even prisoner-of-war camps.”

Let’s take a look at a couple.

Located in Sussex and covering 16,000 acres, Arundel Castle was the front-line defense if an invasion of England’s south coast occurred, so it was quickly taken over by the Army who camouflaged huge guns in the estate’s ancient earthworks. The Royal Observed Corps manned the south towner and the High Street Lodge was converted to an armory. Two military camps were billeted in the Great Park. Trenches were dug, pillboxes built, and barbed wired strung up. Years and large sums of money were required to return the property to its pre-war condition.

Hatfield House, the setting on which I based my book, A Doctor in the House, experienced a happier ending. Set in Hertfordshire, fifteen miles north of London, the estate served for the second time as a military hospital treating British soldiers as well as POWs. It is one of the largest Jacobean houses in England. The furniture was removed and stored, but in a risky move, the paintings, tapestries, and armor were left in place. Fortunately, the property was left in good condition, and life went on as usual for the owners.

Other stories about requisitioned homes include private deer herds being culled for food, furniture, paneling, and staircases being removed for firewood, and fires occurring due to careless smokers. Episodes of soldiers using priceless works of art as dart boards abound. At Tottenham Park in Wiltshire, the grounds were used as an ammo dump. An accidental explosion blew out every pane of glass in the house and the conservatory.

Because of hard use or maltreatment, more than one thousand ancestral homes would be destroyed or torn down after the war. In 1946, building materials were still rationed and taxes high. Repairs to country homes were done on a shoestring, make-do-and-mend basis, which meant bigger issues were covered over to be dealt with at a later time. But the generations who took over after the war were determined to make a go of it, and thanks to grants, opening their homes to the public, and the use of second-hand furnishings, thousands more homes have survived.

About the book:

A Doctor in the House
A historical Christmas novella 
Part of The Hope of Christmas collection.

Emma O’Sullivan is one of the first female doctors to enlist after President Franklin Roosevelt signs the order allowing women in the Army and Navy medical corps. Within weeks, Emma is assigned to England to set up a convalescent hospital, and she leaves behind everything that is familiar. When the handsome widower of the requisitioned property claims she’s incompetent and tries to get her transferred, she must prove to her superiors she’s more than capable. But she’s soon drawn to the good-looking, grieving owner. Will she have to choose between her job and her heart?

Archibald “Archie” Heron is the last survivor of the Heron dynasty, his two older brothers having been lost at Dunkirk and Trondheim and his parents in the Blitz. After his wife is killed in a bombing raid while visiting Brighton, he begins to feel like a modern-day Job. To add insult to injury, the British government requisitions his country estate, Heron Hall, for the U.S. Army to use as a hospital. The last straw is when the hospital administrator turns out to be a fiery, ginger-haired American woman. She’s got to go. Or does she?

First page:

Emma O’Sullivan hurled herself on the floor of the train compartment and covered her head as the shrieking whistle of the approaching bomb filled her ears. Sweat beaded on her upper lip. She cringed and pushed herself further underneath the seat.

Her first mission to England, and she was going to die? The Army Medical Corps hadn’t wanted to send her overseas, but she was their last resort to set up the new convalescent hospital. Who would do the work if she was killed?

Time seemed to stand still as the screeching drew closer. A baby cried out, and its mother sobbed in response. Emma squeezed her eyes closed and held her breath. Is this how You’re going to take me home, Lord? Make sure Mom and Dad know I love them.

A muffled explosion sounded, and the car jolted and bucked its way off the track. Windows shattered, and glass fragments shot through the air. Passengers screamed, and the infant began to wail. Emma shuddered and fought the urge to cry. The little one wasn’t the only person frightened. Two days in England, and Emma experienced the trauma many Londoners had endured for months – unavoidable bombing. Maybe she should have stayed in Baltimore instead of insisting she could handle the assignment. How had she put it? With one arm tied behind my back. That might happen after all.

Gray smoke rolled through the jagged openings and filled the train car. Emma climbed to her feet and coughed. Her eyes burned as she surveyed her fellow passengers. “Is anyone hurt? I’m a doctor.”

About Linda:

Linda Shenton Matchett is an author, journalist, blogger, and history geek. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry, Linda has lived in historical places most of her life. She is a volunteer docent at the Wright Museum of WWII and a Trustee for her local public library. Active in her church Linda serves as treasurer, usher, and choir member.

Click https://goo.gl/qsBeW1 to sign up for my newsletter and receive a free ebook: Devotions from a Writer.

Where can folks find me on the web:

Website: www.LindaShentonMatchett.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/authorlindamatchett

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/lindasmatchett

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/authorlindamatchett

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author_Linda_Matcett

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Linda-Shenton-Matchett/e/B01DNB54S0

Love’s Harvest: Now available in paperback and Ebook at www.amazon.com/dp/B01DMB3ZX2

Love Found in Sherwood Forest available at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MU3JDR3

On the Rails available at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MUYAGU3 

“A Love Not Forgotten,” part of the Let Love Spring Collection available at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XVZB38Y 

Under Fire available at http://www.electiopublishing.com/index.php/bookstore#!/Under-Fire-Paperback/p/88329129

 

Guest Post — Darlene Franklin

Today I’m happy to welcome author Darlene Franklin as she talks about God’s faithfulness and her recent story.

What does Thanksgiving have to do with the characters in His Golden Bride, my latest historical novel, included in the collection Captive Bride?

None of the action takes place over the holiday, but President Lincoln had just instituted it as an annual event in 1863. His words on the event would resonate with my heroine, Goldie. He invited all Americians to pray for God to extend “his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers.”

Goldie’s never known her father and her mother had died several years ago. Now the person who had raised her was demanding repayment.

I won’t go into the details—(later known as) Maiden Lane, Barbery Coast, San Francisco, 1873—let your imagination run.

But sometimes I’ve felt like I’m there. Without mother or father, and with no one to defend me. Have you?

I felt that way when my children ripped from my arms (and I’m sure they did too.) I’m tempted to feel that way every year as the holidays roll around. I’m nursing-home bound. We have plenty of celebrations, but never on the day.

My cousin knew the feeling when her husband left her a month after her mother died—when she was only 31.

Gwen Tapewa of Zimbabwe felt it when her world crumbled after her husband left it, due in large part to societal pressures because of her albinism.

All of those losses are due to death or divorce, but that sense of being lost and defenseless can come from a different area – perhaps never being married, or living with an empty next, or losing a job, or a thousand other scenarios.

Whatever our black hole, when we’re like Goldie, waiting for the inevitable shoe to drop and disaster to strike, we place our trust in God and wait for Him to act. Even when it passes whatever artificial deadline we impose on it.

Bottom line: We can be thankful because God is God.

ABOUT THE BOOK: The Captive Brides Collection

Love Brings Freedom in 9 Historical Romances

Includes:

His Golden Treasure by Darlene Franklin – Barbary Coast, San Francisco, CA, 1873

Goldie Hatfield grows up on in the Barbary Coast until her guardian demands she pay the cost of her upbringing–or work at her brothel. How far will Pastor Joshua Kerr go to set Goldie free?

Learn more on Amazon

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Darlene Franklin

Best-selling hybrid author Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. She lives in Moore near her son, and is expecting her first greatgrandchild in January. Mermaid Song is her fiftieth unique title! She’s also contributed to more than thirty nonfiction titles. Her column, “The View Through my Door,” appears in four monthly venues (including Oklahoma Senior News and Living. Other recent titles are Christmas Masquerade and Maple Notch Romances Eight Couples Find Love You can find her online at: Website and blog, Facebook, Amazon author page

 

Gratitude — Gail Kittleson

Today I’m happy to welcome author Gail Kittleson as she talks about gratitude and her favorite holiday.

This might be my favorite holiday, a time to reflect and say thanks for all the good in our lives. I’ve always enjoyed Thanksgiving Day, but my historical research heightens my appreciation.

We have plenty to worry about these days, but most of us don’t fear for our loved ones who are off fighting brutal enemies in Europe or the Pacific. That’s how many Americans spent Thanksgiving in the early 1940’s.

Last winter, my cousin found a newspaper article about my dad coming home to Iowa for a nine-day leave during the war. Just think—nine days to see your family, well probably about five if you allow for travel. Our family has experienced some deployments, with our son and my husband gone for a year or more at a time.

But in World War II, a soldier or sailor might be gone four years at a stretch, if they were stationed in North Africa, Italy, or out on a ship who-knows-where. No SKYPE, WHAT’S APP, or e-mail, AND most soldiers had very little access to phones.

So you simply held your loved ones in your heart and prayed for their safety. I imagine you might also give thanks for the memories that bound you, even over such a great distance.

Most Americans have plenty to eat today, even if they share a communal meal provided by a church or other organization. But with rationing during the war, many enjoyed less than plenty. Especially in larger cities, people knew hunger, and victory gardens sprang up in narrow back yards and on rooftops.

How would these conditions have affected us? It’s difficult to speculate, but I’m pretty sure that when the war finally ended, my gratitude would have overflowed. I would have tried, but not always succeeded in maintaining a thankful attitude the rest of the time.

The heroine of my latest release, A Purpose True, spent Thanksgiving 1943 in London, and the next year was in Southern France, working underground to thwart the oppressive Third Reich. Every day brought fresh fears and dangers, but she persevered. Living in constant tension, she honed her ability to adapt to the randomness of war.

But through all her trials and challenges, she discovered quiet joys—the beauties of nature, the satisfaction of contributing to the war effort. And the war could not stop her from forging new friendships…or even from falling in love.

Today, I’m especially thankful for the gifts of reading and writing. To give myself to story makes all the difference in my life all year long.

 

###

ABOUT THE BOOK: A Purpose True

Southern France – Spring, 1944

German panzer units crisscross the region, dealing ruthless reprisals against the French Resistance, and anyone suspected of supporting its efforts. Secret Operations Executive (SOE) agent Kate Isaacs is tasked with providing essential radio communications with the Allies, while her guide, Domingo Ibarra, a Basque shepherd-turned-Resistance fighter, dedicates himself to avenging the destruction of his home and family.

Thrown together by the vagaries of war, their shared mission, and common devotion to liberty, the last thing Kate and Domingo anticipate is the stirring of affection that threatens to blossom into love. But how can love survive in the midst of the enemy’s relentless cruelty toward innocent citizens?

Everything hinges on the success of the Allied Invasion – L’Invasion.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Gail Kittleson

When Gail’s not steeped in World War II research, drafting scenes, or deep in one edit or another, she does a limited amount of editing for other authors. She also facilitates writing workshops and classes, both in Iowa and Arizona, where winters find her enjoying the incredibly gorgeous Ponderosa forest under the Mogollon Rim. Favorites:  walking, reading, meeting new people, and hearing from readers who fall in love with her characters.

Facebook Author Page: www.facebook.com/GailKittlesonAuthor

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.co.uk/gailkittleson/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/106969195211961187796

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3459831.Gail_Kittleson

Twitter: www.twitter.com/GailGkittleson @GailGkittleson

Other: https://www.linkedin.com/in/gail-kittleson-b0693543

Watch the trailer for the prequel to A Purpose True here: https://youtu.be/LHDwp61r5Q4

The Shiloh Saga… One Down, Four to Go — Patricia Blake

Today I’m happy to welcome author Patricia Blake as she talks about her latest stories.

Historical fiction mixed with romance is the genre I chose to write my Shiloh Saga. I am an avid fan of Francine Rivers and Janette Oke, who use that genre so very well to tell stories about people who seem very human. Actually, I didn’t start out to write a saga. I just had a story to tell about Arkansas and the industrious, persistent pioneer stock that built my beautiful state. Being a novice writer, I had no idea that 685,000 words were too many to bind into one book until Eddie Jones, publisher of Lighthouse Books of the Carolinas, told me I hadn’t written one book but six. Regardless, I had accomplished my goal—or maybe dream is a better word—of writing a positive story about my home state, trying to portray Arkansas in a realistic, yet uplifting way…a way so contrary to how Arkansas is usually portrayed in literature and the media.

Since I self-published In Search of Shiloh in July, I have been humbled by the response of the many readers who have loved my story. Comments like, “I couldn’t lay it down.” and “You made me stay up half the night turning pages.” come frequently. Most surprising has been the number of men who have praised the book and asked for the sequel. They have made positive comments on the history and the descriptions I gave of Arkansas landmarks through which Mac and Laurel passed during their long, perilous journey from Washington County to Greene County in 1857. Perhaps my favorite praise came from a friend who said, “Pat, I’m not a reader. I started your book because you are my friend, but I finished it in three days. I didn’t want it to end. When will the next one be done?”

Part of the joy of the research was visiting these places on a road trip in the snowy March of 2014. Thankfully, we were driving over paved highways in a new Cadillac and not traveling rough paths or dirt roads using a mule-drawn wagon as were Laurel and Mac in the book. I am indebted to historians of Arkansas local history. The work a Craighead County historian, Herschel (Plug) Eaton has been a God-send. He wrote what little we know of the Greensboro community and published it the Craighead County Historical Journals.

The sequel, The Dream of Shiloh will be published before Valentine’s Day, 2018. While I will continue to self-publish the Shiloh Saga, I hope to have a future book accepted for publication. I think all writers yearn for that official validation from an established publisher that their work is “good enough.” Nevertheless, my readers’ love for my story is obvious by their comments and reviews. I think I have met my goal of presenting my great state honestly and well. I know the Lord has blessed me through this work. That is validation far beyond enough to keep me writing.

ABOUT THE BOOK: In Search of Shiloh

In 1857, the new state of Arkansas is seven years younger than Laurel Campbell. Single at the ripe old age of twenty-eight, both Laurel and the people of Hawthorn consider her the local spinster. When Laurel’s father announces he’s arranged a marriage for her, Laurel’s world transforms overnight. Suddenly, she’s Laurel MacLayne, wife of homesteader Patrick MacLayne.

Proud and headstrong, Laurel resents being married off but has little say in the matter.

As for Patrick, a painful past keeps him from getting too close to his new bride. He’s a good man, though, so when he asks Laurel to step out into the world with him in faith, she agrees. She may not love him, but she at least can give him her respect and support.

Whether that’s enough to build a marriage on will be decided on the road to Shiloh.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Patricia Blake

Patricia Clark Blake holds a BSE in English, MSE in reading, and Ed.S. in counseling psychology from Arkansas State University. Now retired, she spent her career in Arkansas public schools teaching English, Spanish, oral communications, leadership and as a secondary-school counselor. She taught psychology and supervised counseling interns at the college level.

Known as Pat to her friends, Blake has published in juried psychological journals, but the Shiloh Saga novels are her first attempt at writing fiction. Her proposal for ‘Til Shiloh Come won an award from the Blue Ridge Christian Novel Retreat in 2016. This proposal eventually became her first novel, In Search of Shiloh. The next book, The Dream of Shiloh, in the saga will be released in February of 2018.

Blake volunteers in her church, teaches Sunday school, and leads water-wellness classes. She is passionate about genealogy and Arkansas history and uses both in her writing. She is blessed with a wonderful daughter and son-in-law. She is Nanna to a beautiful granddaughter and a fine grandson. She resides near the Greensboro community of Jonesboro, Arkansas, the town mentioned often in her Shiloh stories.

 

A Refreshing Rain: The Great Awakening of the 1740s — Lynne Tagawa

Today I’m happy to welcome author Lynne Tagawa as she talks about the Great Awakening of the 1740s.

The young people weren’t serious about the things of God. What to do? Their elders prayed, but the next generation was given over to amusements and questionable activities. They still attended church, of course. But the whole atmosphere of the town alarmed some of the church members, including the pastor.

Does this sound familiar to you? Is it true of your own church? Well, it was true of the church of Northampton, Connecticut, in the early 1730s—a church which had called a young man as pastor: Jonathan Edwards.

Edwards was not a charismatic preacher. His gifts were intellectual. While at Yale, he studied a plethora of subjects; he loved the natural sciences, and eventually studied John Locke as well. He wrestled with great theological topics: election at first repelled him, though it was part of the Congregational creed.

But he grew as a Christian. The great doctrines of the Reformation enamored his heart, and the person of Christ became central to all his thinking. A formal exterior concealed a heart passionate for God and the gospel of grace.

He came to Northampton and preached justification by faith. Reminding his listeners of God’s just wrath against sinners, he opened to them the great truths of the gospel of grace.

And things began to happen.

The young people started paying attention to their spiritual state. They began to prefer preaching to frolics and taverns. And a few years later, when rumors of false teaching in nearby areas reached their ears, they became more serious still.

Then George Whitefield came to the Colonies from England, and this “awakening” began to spread. People walking on the streets of Philadelphia would hear singing from nearby houses. Benjamin Franklin sold many copies of Isaac Watts’ hymns.

What would it have been like to live during this time? To hear about the “enthusiasts” in Northampton, as some called them? To hear Whitefield preach in the fields, because men of his own persuasion—the Anglicans—would not open their pulpits to him? To see and hear men and women of all classes and backgrounds weep because they were trusting in their own works to save them?

The protagonists of The Shenandoah Road, my current project, don’t hear Mr. Whitefield preach, but they do read a sermon—yes, Mr. Franklin has been busy printing sermons too. And they heard descriptions:

Sam stared off into the distance. He was a man of few words. What was on his mind?

“Ye say she kens her Catechism. But is Christ the treasure of her heart?”

John blinked. He’d never heard his brother talk quite like this. He shrugged and frowned, studying the clods at his feet.

His brother frowned, as if seeking the right words. “Ye have heard about George Whitefield’s visits here.”

“Oh, aye. I saw the new meetinghouse too.”

“Ye should have been there and heard him preach. I still think on it. In some ways, it was ordinary. Straight gospel preaching. Much like Tennent’s. But the crowds . . .” His brother’s voice cracked with feeling.

John forgot the heat. He’d not heard his taciturn brother so moved.

“Every kind of person attended the open-air meetings. Negro slaves. Indentured servants. Fancy gentlemen would sit in their carriages nearby, and skinny apprentices perched in the trees. Butchers came with bloody aprons and stood next to ladies in fine muslin.”

Sam paused. His eyes brightened with tears. “They would weep. Sometimes only tears, but occasionally sobs would erupt from deep within the crowd.”

“Why?” Da had written him, but not with such detail. “Why would the gospel make them cry?”

“Well, ye see, most of these folks considered themselves Christian already. Philadelphia is full of all sorts: Presbyterian, Quakers, Baptists, and even a few Congregationalists, as ye know. And aye, some didna claim any sort of religion. But most did. And they wept because they realized their hope of heaven was false. Again and again, I would hear someone say, ‘I was raised in a Christian home. I’m a member. I know my Catechism. I give to the poor. But all that means nothing now. My only hope is in Christ.’”

John fixed his gaze on his brother. “So these folks closed with Christ?”

“Oh aye, many did.” His brother’s mouth twitched. “So ye see, the weeping wasn’t just of sorrow. There were tears of joy as well.”

Abigail. Her face came before him. “Are ye wondering about my betrothed?”

“Aye. Is she resting in her own works?” Sam took off his hat and massaged his neck. “Sometimes it’s hard to tell. We tend to do it by nature.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Lynne Tagawa

Lynne Tagawa is married with four grown sons and three marvelous grandbabies. A biology teacher by trade, she teaches part-time, writes, and edits. She’s written a Texas history curriculum in narrative form, Sam Houston’s Republic, and has just published her debut novel, A Twisted Strand. Lynne lives with her husband in South Texas.

 

Does God Give Us More than We Can Handle? — Tamera Lynn Kraft

Today I’m happy to welcome author Tamera Lynn Kraft as she talks about dealing with hardships in life and God’s purpose through the difficult times.

I’ve heard the saying many times. God never gives us more than we can handle. But that’s only partially true. Here’s the verse it comes from.

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

It says in the verse that God won’t give you a temptation you can’t handle. But trials and difficulties are another matter. He promises we will have difficulties and lots of them. Some of them will be harder than we can handle on our own.

Before I knew this, I used to get mad at God. I didn’t understand why He allowed things to come into my life that were beyond me. Then I learned this simple truth. There are reason God gives us more than we can handle.

If He didn’t give us more than we can handle, we wouldn’t know how much we need Him. We wouldn’t be on our knees crying out to the only One who can help us through our difficulties. Jesus Christ is the only One who can speak to the wind and waves in our lives and command them to be still. That’s good news because I get in trouble when I think I can manage without Him.

The other reason is to grow our faith and perseverance. The book of James tells us that trials are a good thing. They strengthen us spiritually. When an athlete trains, he works at stretching his limits so he can get stronger. He puts a little more on himself than he can easily handle. It’s the same spiritually. God allows us to stretch ourselves spiritually by putting more on us than we can easily handle so that our faith can grow. When I look over my life, I find there are things I can manage easily now that would have thrown me years ago.

In Resurrection of Hope, Vivian had more troubles than she could handle. Her parents and sister had died from the great influenza outbreak of 1918. Her fiancé had died in World War I. If that wasn’t bad enough, she was evicted from her farm with only the clothes on her back to pay for her father’s gambling debts, and the only man who would hire her was a man she despised. When her boss made a pass at her and asked her to marry him, suicide seemed the only way out, but God provided another way.

What are you reading right now?

I am currently reading a Young Adult Series called Ranger’s Apprentice by John Flannigan. My grandsons got me hooked on the books about a mythical Middle Age kingdom, and I can’t seem to put them down. I’m on the tenth book or the twelve-book series.

What is your current work in progress?

Currently I’m working on the second novel of a three novel series called Ladies of Oberlin. It’s called Lost in the Storm. The first novel, Red Sky over America is being released by Desert Breeze on February 11, 2018. Here’s a blurb about the series.

It’s the middle of the 18th century, a troubled time in American history, when strong women find it difficult to find their place in society. Three women dare to fight against social injustices, but when they fall in love, things get complicated.

Three women roommates, graduates of Oberlin College, challenge society norms to do what is right even though it may cost them everything, including love. Oberlin College, considered radical at the time, was the only co-education, multi-racial college before the Civil War, and its graduates were involved in many progressive era issues including abolition, women’s suffrage, prohibition, and the missionary movement.

In Red Sky over America, in a nation on the brink of war, America confronts slavery and risks being alienated from her slave owning father. In Lost in the Storm, during the Civil War, Lavena challenges a profession ruled by men to become a war correspondent, but will she keep her job by destroying the man she loves? In The Aftermath, when Betsy’s husband comes home from the war as an alcoholic, she uses unladylike tactics to fight against the evils of drink to save her marriage.

Meet the Ladies of Oberlin, the causes they’re willing to fight for, and the men who capture their hearts.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.

I enjoy all genres of fiction even though I only write historical fiction. I’m very eclectic in my tastes. My favorites are historicals set during American history, suspense, and mystery.

Thanks for having me on today. Your question about genres made me think. What time period do your readers enjoy most when reading historical novels.

ABOUT THE BOOK: Resurrection of Hope

She thought he was her knight in shining armor, but will a marriage of convenience prove her wrong?

After Vivian’s fiancé dies in the Great War, she thinks her life is over. But Henry, her fiancé’s best friend, comes to the rescue offering a marriage of convenience. He claims he promised his friend he would take care of her. She grows to love him, but she knows it will never work because he never shows any love for her.

Henry adores Vivian and has pledged to take care of her, but he won’t risk their friendship by letting her know. She’s still in love with the man who died in the Great War. He won’t risk heartache by revealing his true emotions.

First Page of Resurrection of Hope:
Palm Sunday, 1919

Tonight would be the last time Vivian Klein cleaned Mr. Adder’s office. After she finished for the day, she’d take the Colt handgun she’d seen in the top drawer of his desk and finish off her miserable life.

Tomorrow morning, the owner of the Greenville Hotel would find her dead body sprawled beside the desk on his fancy wool rug. A certain satisfaction set in as a grin crossed her face. He’d have to find somebody else to clean away the blood.

First, she needed to finish her other chores. After washing dishes and changing sheets, she started scrubbing the narrow linoleum floor in the second floor hallway. She tackled the scrub brush with a relish she hadn’t felt before. These constant tasks taking over every moment of her existence for the last six months would soon end.

It wasn’t like this had been the worst day of her life. A year ago, she received a telegram informing her James, the love of her life, had died in the Great War. She paused for a moment, leaning on her heels, the memories flooding her emotions.

“Soon, my love. I’ll join you soon.”

Setting aside the heartache, she wiped away a tear and got back to work.

Footsteps shuffled down the hall and stopped abruptly as the fetid scent of cigar smoke mixed with the sweet smell of lilac aftershave assaulted her senses. A prickle crept over her like ants crawling all over her skin. She dropped the scrub brush and stood to face Mr. Albert Adder. She kept her disdain at bay as she looked down at him.

The owner of the Greenville Hotel, as always, dressed in a dapper three piece suit and bowtie, stretched his neck and shoulders reminding her of a rooster trying to crow, but it didn’t add one inch to his short stature. He glowered up at her over his bifocals and pointed nose, his dark eyes betraying the deviousness within. “I hope you’ve reconsidered my offer,” he said, his characteristic smirk in place. “I only want to improve your situation.”

The knot that never left Vivian’s stomach tightened. “If you really want to help me, you could start by paying me a decent salary.”

Adder ran his hand over his balding scalp. “I give you room and board. Nobody else came to your aide when you were left destitute. You should be grateful.”

She dug her fingernails into her palms to keep from smacking his face. If he hadn’t introduced her father to alcohol and gambling in the hotel’s back room, she wouldn’t have lost the farm. The room still operated even though prohibition had already been enacted in Ohio. “I’ll never marry you.”

“I know I’m a bit older than you…”

A snort escaped Vivian’s lips.

“Lots of men marry younger women. Be reasonable, girl. If you agree to be my wife, you won’t have to work so hard. You’ll have everything you ever wanted.” He touched her arm.

It took everything inside not to cringe. She tilted her chin up with the last vestige of self-respect she had.

“I won’t change my mind.”

Mr. Adder’s lips pressed together. “Fine then. If you want to be a scrub woman for the rest of your life instead of the wife of the richest man in town, so be it.” He stomped down the stairs and out of sight.
She tried to pick up the scrub brush but couldn’t get her trembling hand to cooperate. Please Lord, if there’s another way.

It was a useless prayer. God hadn’t come to the rescue when James was killed. Or when she cared for her sisters and parents as they died of influenza. Where was He when the sheriff showed up at her door and told her she had twenty-four hours to leave the only home she’d ever known?

God had deserted her. It was time to end it.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Tamera Lynn Kraft

Tamera Lynn Kraft has always loved adventures. She loves to write historical fiction set in the United States because there are so many stories in American history. There are strong elements of faith, romance, suspense and adventure in her stories. She has received 2nd place in the NOCW contest, 3rd place TARA writer’s contest, and is a finalist in the Frasier Writing Contest and has a novel and novellas in print. She’s been married for 38 years to the love of her life, Rick, and has two married adult children and two grandchildren.

You can contact me at these online sites:

Website: http://tameralynnkraft.net

Word Sharpeners Blog: http://tameralynnkraft.com

Facebook: http://facebook.com/tameralynnkraft

Twitter: http://twitter.com/tamerakraft

If you’d like updates on my novels, please sign up for my newsletter at this link. http://eepurl.com/cdybpb I promise I won’t stalk you or sell your information to the Russians.

 

Carole Brown — Author Spotlight

Today I’m happy to welcome author Carole Brown for an author spotlight and giveaway. Read through to the end to find out how you can enter to win a free ebook.

 

— What (2 or 3) fun or unique things can you tell us about yourself?

1. I love rocks! Believe it or not, I’ve always been fascinated with them. I suppose because I love strength and endurability. I collect them from various places and accept them from husband’s building sites and from Grandson Jonathan’s childish hands. I’ve just recently found a new way to display them: Older clear bottles and containers that sit collecting dust in closets and other storeage areas, will now be partially filled with some of these “gems.” 🙂

2. Almost every book I’ve written (this month will make ten books (one was compiled by a variety of authors) has part of me in it. From a favorite recipe to my mother’s name to activity interests to a special scene that means a lot to me. Example: In With Music in Their Hearts, Book One of the WWII Spies series, Tyrell Walker both cooks (to a certain degree) and plays the piano. I love a man who does both of those things!

3. I love to travel and love mysteries! My husband and I both enjoy these items. Traveling is something we’ve done for most of our married lives (hubby would travel full time, if I’d agree. Lol) and we both enjoy trying to solve a mystery before the ending is known.

— What can your readers expect from you next?

I have several books in line for “next.” Here’s a list of a few of them:

2018:

  • In my Denton and Alex Davies series (cozy mysteries), book three, Daffy’s Duck, should be available. This book is especially interesting because “Daffy” is Daffodil Meadows, a Down’s Syndrome secondary character caught up in the mystery of a long-ago rumor of missing jewels.

  • In my Appleton, WV Romantic Mystery series, book four, Toby’s Troubles, the brother of the main protagonist in book three, is caught up with solving his own small town mystery of a hidden, dark secret and the love of his life.

  • A stand alone: Caleb’s Destiny, is a 1800s romance with mystery elements. A lonely ranch owner and a feisty visitor—or is she?—discover the answer to the disappearance of a fortune years ago…and love.

2019: 

  • The third book in the WWII Spies Romantic Mystery series: Sing Until We Die, is scheduled for release. The third sister of the red-headed Rayner sisters—the songbird of the trio—Claire Rayner and Wills Mason (a secret spy who’s loved her since a child), must find the dangerous foreign spy who’s out to fulfill his mission…and destroy any who get in his way.

There are so many more, but that gives you a hint of what’s coming, if all goes as planned.

— How did you get started writing?

Seems, I’ve always written. I remember specifically in sixth grade the assignment of creating a cave family’s journal. Wish I still had that! In high school, a close friend and I spent all of study hour (yeah, back then) writing heartbreaking poetry and poignant passages of death, love and whatever else caught our fantasy at the time.

Once I married I was so caught up with our ministry and raising our two sons that I “kind of” put fiction writing on the shelf, although I did some non-fiction items and a bit of poetry. But when my sons were raised, I realized it was now or never, and I dove in. I had to re-learn a lot, gain critique partners, sign with an agent and wrote, wrote, wrote.

Now, after ten books, with several more on the way, I feel as if writing is my true calling—has always been. Sometimes I might feel as if I should have started earlier, but I know all works out in the right timing. My adventurous life and travels have broadened my knowledge of states and places I might never have learned about otherwise. Meeting many, many people and studying them have given me insights into personalities and actions that have increased my ability to create versatile characters.

Readers, answer the following question to enter to win an e-copy of “A Flute in the Willows” (book 2) OR “With Music in Their Hearts (book 3). Winner’s Choice.

QUESTION: If you like the first book you read from a new-to-you author, will you follow their work and read more of their books? Why?

ABOUT THE BOOK: A Flute in the Willows

Both rebels in their own way, Josie and Jerry Patterson must figure out how to keep the other’s love…and keep the German enemy at bay.

She has two loves—her skating and Jerry, her husband. But when he returns home looking like a skeleton trying to return to life, she’s scared. What happened in Germany to change a man so much? Has another woman captured his heart?

Jerry has vowed to let Josie live her own glamourous life…especially after what happened in Germany. But when his wife’s life is threatened, Jerry realizes he can’t stand by and do nothing. Jerry has to risk all for the very soul and life of himself—Josie.

These two damaged, rebellious people learn the hard way that leaning on God instead of their ownselves and abilities is the only true way to love and happiness.

 

FIRST PAGE:

Chapter One
1942

Jerry Patterson stared out the yawning black hole in the side of the plane. Seconds to go before he dropped. Night time parachuting was always a risky thing, but the pilot was one of the best who’d keep this baby right on target, lessening the chances he’d have to hit water. Trees were another matter, but with any kind of luck, the landing would go smooth.

Then to meet his contact and move into the German military high life. His pulse revved up. It was a dangerous game he was about to play.

Josie’s face flashed in his mind, and Jerry felt his heart soften. How he loved his tomboy wife. She was a beautiful butterfly dancing on ice, but put her in a social setting, and she was like a wild creature let lose in a maiden aunt’s prim parlor.

Three weeks of marital bliss. It’d been heaven on earth for him. One rapturous day—and night—after another. She’d cried the night before he’d left, but had been strength personified when he’d boarded the train the next morning.

If—no, when—he got home, he’d wrap his arms around her and not let her out of his sight.

Jerry stepped into the hole and dropped rapidly, counting. One thousand…One thousand one…One thousand two… With a jerk he pulled, the parachute opened above him, and he drifted earthward toward his assignment.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Carole Brown

Besides being a member and active participant of many writing groups, Carole Brown enjoys mentoring beginning writers. She loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?

Personal blog: http://sunnebnkwrtr.blogspot.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CaroleBrown.author

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Carole-Brown/e/B00EZV4RFY/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1427898838&sr=8-1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/browncarole212

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/sunnywrtr/boards/

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/5237997-carole-brown

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=67381031

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/113068871986311965415/posts

Stitches in Time: http://stitchesthrutime.blogspot.com/

Word Sharpeners: https://wordsharpeners.wordpress.com/2017/04/14/what-easter-means-to-me/

 

Finding the Fun in Book Signings — Gail Pallotta

Today I’m happy to welcome author Gail Pallotta as she shares some book signing stories. Read through to the end to find out how to enter the giveaway for a kindle copy of “Barely Above Water”.

I enjoy talking to people at book signings. Sure, I’ve experienced the drawbacks—the person who rushes to my table and asks, “Where’s the restroom?’ without noticing I have books for sale.

I’ve stood by as shoppers charged in the doorway, glanced at my display and held up their hands in stop fashion before I said a word. There have been those who peered at me with doubtful eyes and said nothing when I asked if they’d like to hear about my books.

But many warm, fun times outweigh the awkward moments. I love it when someone strolls to my table and says, “Hi, are these your books? Tell me about them.” And, their eyes light up while I’m talking. They pick up a couple books then choose one and say, “I want this one. Will you sign it?”

Most of the time we chat a while. At one event after a woman purchased a book, I bent over to sign it and heard her ask, “Is there a restaurant nearby?”

I looked up and answered enthusiastically, “Yes, right next door. I love it. I can’t wait to go.”

The woman tilted her head and stared at me.

My daughter, who happened to be there, said, “Mom, she’s looking for a restroom.”

We laughed and laughed as did the three other women with the lady. My daughter said, “If you all lived in the same place, you could go out to lunch and have a great time.”

We agreed we could.

What better place for an author to make new friends than at a book signing?

Book Signing Tips

I’ve read many suggestions for holding book signings. They include having a nice display and offering giveaways, such as a bowl of candy or stack of bookmarks. Some people have a band play for a book launch and others create large signs to draw attention to their tables.

As for me, speaking to customers and making the presentation about the books brief top my list. Since I’m not a well- known author the general public has no idea who I am or what I’m doing. However, once I meet customers quite a few buys books, and most of the time those who don’t take my card. I realize people today are busy and try not to take up too much of their time unless they ask questions about a book, pick it up, or otherwise indicate they’d like to know more than my brief description included.

Question: Do you enjoy holding or going to book signings? Do you have a book signing story to share with us?

(Leave a comment below and be entered to win a kindle copy of “Barely Above Water”.)

ABOUT THE BOOK: Barely Above Water

An illness comes out of nowhere and strikes Suzie Morris. Her boyfriend dumps her. She has no living family, and her physician can’t diagnose the malady.

Suzie relies on her Christian faith as she faces the uncertainty of the disease, and turns to a renowned alternative doctor in Destin, Florida. She takes a job coaching a county-sponsored summer swim team. She’s determined to turn the fun, sometimes comical, rag-tag bunch into winners.

Her handsome boss renews her belief in love, but learns of her mysterious affliction and abruptly cuts romantic ties. Later he has regrets, but can he overcome his fear of losing a loved one and regain Suzie’s trust?

Buy Barely Above Water on Amazon at http://amzn.to/1W4fUXB

FIRST PAGE

Chapter One

Suzie shivered at Carson Snotte’s words, not the March air with its hint of lingering winter.

“Under the circumstances, I don’t think we should see each other.” He threw their relationship to the wind whipping around the Bradford pear tree in her small, grassy yard. Everything spun out of control. Suzie struggled to stand upright on the cement drive in front of her brick condo.

An image of her and Carson entering Blue Mountain, North Carolina’s largest charity event as the King and Queen begged her to hold on to her destiny. The grandeur of his black and white tuxedo, the promise of being seen as the ideal couple, hovered over them as she had floated next to him in her long purple gown. “Don’t say that. I promise I’m going to get to the bottom of this. I’ll fix it.”

Carson’s thin lips snarled, ruining his fine features, his blue eyes staring at Suzie like pieces of stone. “You’ve made a mess of our lives. Who introduced you to drugs? Are you seeing some hood on the side?”

“No, I told you the doctor said I have a foreign substance in my system.” She didn’t add that the physician had said he couldn’t treat her because the labs couldn’t identify it. Carson was already upset.

He guffawed. “Right, can’t they figure out cocaine, or is it heroin?”

Suzie’s heart broke in a million pieces. “I’ve never taken illegal drugs in my life. I don’t even take prescription medicine, and no, I haven’t seen anyone but you in three years.”

Carson waved his long, thin hand then blew air from his mouth. “Seriously, our relationship has deteriorated beyond repair. I’m not sure if you’re actually hooked on something, or if you’re a hypochondriac. Let’s say hypochondriac, and we’ll both be lots happier.”

The fair-haired, athletic guy with broad shoulders pivoted and walked away. Suzie stood with tears rolling down her cheeks. Maybe he was right. There was nothing wrong with her. The ailment was all in her head. Why look even more foolish trying to find someone to cure a disease that didn’t exist? She plunked down on her front stoop and wiped her eyes. The azalea bush beside her blurred with her tears and morphed into an Impressionist painting.

See Dr. Granger. Was she losing it? See Dr. Granger. Who was Dr. Granger? She’d heard the name but couldn’t recall him. See Dr. Granger. You need to see Dr. Granger. The words persisted as though they resounded from a stuck CD player.

###

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Gail Pallotta

Award-winning author Gail Pallotta’s a wife, mom, swimmer and bargain shopper who loves God, beach sunsets and getting together with friends and family. A Grace Awards Finalist and a Reader’s Favorite Book Award winner, she’s published five books, poems, short stories and two-hundred articles. Some of her articles appear in anthologies while two are in museums.

Sign up for Gail’s newsletter at http://www.gailpallotta.com/mainphp.html

Visit her website at http://www.gailpallotta.com

Her Amazon author page at amazon.com/author/gailpallotta

Her blog at http://www.gailpallotta.blogspot.com

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