Category Archives: Book Reviews

Review & Giveaway: Hidden Sea by Miles Arceneaux

HIDDEN SEA
by
MILES ARCENEAUX
  Genre: Mystery / Thriller / Suspense
Date of Publication: November 2017
Number of Pages: 384
Scroll down for giveaway!
Charlie Sweetwater saw Mexico—especially the Mexican Gulf Coast—as a spiritual second home. He’d worked, played and lived there for much of his life, and thought the country suited him better than anywhere this side of his home on the Texas Coast.
But now a worrisome and potentially dangerous development has shown up on Charlie’s radar. Young Augustus Sweetwater, affectionately known as Augie, hasn’t reported in after completing a south-of-the-border sales trip for Sweetwater Marine. Raul, Augie’s father and Charlie’s nephew, is worried sick. Drug cartel violence in Mexico has reached epidemic proportions and Augie’s path took him through the heart of the narcotraficantes’ territory.
Charlie figures Augie just went off the grid to do some well-deserved fishing, surfing and beer-drinking at the end of his trip. He’d done the same in his time. But as Augie’s unexplained absence grows, Charlie and Raul become increasingly alarmed and set off for Mexico to bring their boy home.
What they unearth is far more than the sum of their fears. The familiar and friendly Gulf of Mexico has turned into a hidden sea plagued by smugglers, human traffickers, crooked politicians and even pirates. And Augie is lost somewhere in the middle of it all.
Charlie and Raul must summon an unlikely cast of characters to aid them, including a hilariously dissolute ex-pat musician, a priest whose faith struggles against the rising tide of refugee migration, a Mexican tycoon who may have secrets of his own and a beautiful maritime “repo man”. At the end of their quest, as the deepest secret of all is revealed, Charlie Sweetwater learns that neither Raul and Augie, nor the Gulf of Mexico, nor even himself, will ever be the same again.
══════════║║║══════════

Praise for Hidden Sea:

“A riveting story from Texas that wanders down the cartel-invested Gulf Coast of Mexico and drifts across to lawless Cuba. The characters are as salty as the sea and the plot pulls you along as powerfully as the loop current.
W.F. Strong, Stories from Texas, Texas Standard Radio Network
“Hidden Sea is a total blast: smart, funny, and riveting, with unforgettably colorful characters and a world so alive that you’ll swear you’re really there.”
Lou Berney, Edgar Award-winning author of The Long and Faraway Gone
  
“In Hidden Sea, Miles Arceneaux tosses us in the drink of a timely contemporary adventure tale with the Sweetwater clan, complete with pirates, slave ships, family secrets, and the mother of all plot twists, in his patented Gulf Coast noir style.”
Michelle Newby Lancaster, Contributing Editor, Lone Star Literary Life, NBCC Literary Critic
300b2-review
“North Beach” is the first Miles Arceneaux book that I got my paws on, and I was thoroughly impressed with the trio’s storytelling. It took me a little longer to ease into this book, but once I was in, I was hooked. Although very far away from anything I’ve experienced in my life, the story is very real and the characters are authentic.
Dialogue is often painful to read in books, especially when another language is involved. But Arceneaux flits between English and Spanish effortlessly. And with so many different characters with varying levels of English proficiency, Arceneaux manages to keep the dialogue style consistent and fluid from one person to the next.
What Arceneaux crafts even better than dialogue is characters. Colorful doesn’t begin to describe the cast of “Hidden Sea”. Even characters that exist on only a few pages are multifaceted and interesting. It makes me wonder if Arceneaux plans to spin off a few of the key characters in the future.
Are you the type of person who can see things coming from a mile away? I dare you to guess how this story turns out. You’d be wrong. I am not usually surprised by books, but this one made me pause every once in a while to absorb what just happened. The suspense of whether Augie will be found in time is exciting. Heck, I was shocked by revelations that I wasn’t expecting to find. Arceneaux never takes the easy or predictable way out.
I can hardly put into words how much I love this book. The social issues are timely and the story is truly riveting. What are you waiting for? Get a copy and start reading!

“Miles Arceneaux” is the pen name of three long-time Texas friends. James R. Dennis is a former attorney turned Dominican friar who lives in San Antonio. Brent Douglass is an international businessman from Austin. John T. Davis, also of Austin, is a journalist and author. Together, as “Miles,” they have been featured authors at the Texas Book Festival, the San Antonio Book Festival, and the Lubbock Book Festival.
—————————————–
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
Grand Prize: Autographed copies of all five Gulf Coast series books by Miles Arceneaux + a copy of Geoff Winningham’s Traveling the Shore of the Spanish Sea — The Gulf Coast of Texas and Mexico
Two Runners-Up: Each win an autographed copy of Hidden Sea

October 11-October 20, 2017
U.S. Only
CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:
10/11
promo
10/12
Review
10/12
ICYWW #1
10/13
Review
10/14
Excerpt 1
10/14
Author Interview
10/15
Review
10/16
Guest Post
10/16
ICYWW #2
10/17
Review
10/18
Excerpt 2
10/18
Playlist
10/19
Review
10/20
Review
10/20
ICYWW #3
   blog tour services provided by
  

 

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours

Review & Giveaway: Racing Storms by Sara Russell


RACING STORMS
Chasing Desire Trilogy #1

by
SARA RUSSELL
  Genre: Clean Contemporary Romance 
Publisher: North Loop Books
Date of Publication: April 25, 2017
Number of Pages: 198
Scroll down for giveaway!
Decoursey dreads the upcoming weekend. A big NASCAR race is taking place at the speedway near her home–and her abusive, murder-threatening ex-husband just so happens to be a member of a NASCAR pit crew. Determined not to let her ex-husband have a decent opportunity to make good on his threat, Decoursey puts an ad online, hoping to find some security in the form of a guy needing a place to crash. 

Enter Kennan, a storm chaser looking to get away for a few days. Fresh off a failed storm chase, Kennan doesn’t make the best first impression. But that quickly changes as Decoursey gives Kennan a chance and finds the recently broken heart of a gentleman hidden beneath the surface. As sparks fly, so do hopes that they can dream of romance once again. But when their newfound trust is broken, will Decoursey and Kennan weather the storm to find a love that lasts? 
Racing Storms, the exciting debut in Sara Russell’s Chasing Desire trilogy, will get your heart pumping all the way to the finish line.
══════════║║║══════════
Praise for Racing Storms:

“In Racing Storms, fresh new voice Sara Russell begins her three-book series with a courageous and adorable hero, a sassy but vulnerable heroine, spicy love scenes and an insider’s view of daredevil storm chasers! What more could you want from a romance?” 
— Vicki Lewis Thompson, New York Times bestselling author

 


Russell’s debut successfully tackles the idea of finding love when you least expect it.” 
–RT Reviews

“Austin-area writer Sara Russell’s self-described ‘first foray into fiction’ is a smoothly written, nicely plotted romance novel that will entertain many readers who like books with contemporary Texas settings.” 
–Lone Star Literary Life
CLICK TO PURCHASE:
Amazon  ┃  Barnes & Noble  ┃  iBooks
300b2-review
Let me just start by saying that I love this title. It’s witty! The crazy, stalker ex-husband works for NASCAR; the love interest is a storm chaser. So, Racing Storms… Get it? Get it?! Amazing, I know. Just like the rest of the book.
The main character, Decoursey, is instantly likeable. She’s not perfect, tall, and blonde. She’s not working at her dream job and she’s certainly not making perfect decisions. Then you meet Kennan, who is hanging with some very real and douchey guys. He is also not so perfect in the sense that he fails to physically fulfill Decoursey’s ideal (read: tall or big enough to ward off the crazy ex).
If you read romance books at all, you can kind of guess where this is all going, and you’d be right. But how it all goes down would surprise you. And that’s what reading these lovely books is all about, right? It’s about the journey. And where I really applaud Russell, is that she doesn’t give us the obvious where she clearly could have. And she doesn’t pull the rookie mistake of throwing complete curveballs either. Every moment of tension between Decoursey and Kennan is completely believable, because they as characters are believable.
There is no suspension of disbelief necessary to imagine this curvy, down-to-earth girl who enjoys things your grandma likes to do – there’s been a revolution of these retro lovelies if you haven’t noticed. And while it’s all so dreamy to imagine the hunky guy who got his broken by the gorgeous ice princess, I know a few of those as well. Ok, maybe one. But the point is, he’s real too. And in my imagination, I want those two to get together as well.
Russell’s writing is flawless. No need to reread passages that confuse or mucking through clunky dialogue. I can hear these character’s voices in my head perfectly. The whole book actually played out as a nice little movie in my head.
Some scenes are spicy enough to make you need a cold beer, but overall it’s a safe read while in the waiting room or taking a break from work. I cannot wait for the next installment. I look forward to anything else this author writes. Russell, feel free to hit me up if you want to crochet together sometime.

Sara Russell is a near-native Texan who sees nothing wrong with using “y’all” in formal conversation. She maintains that one can do practically anything in a cute dress and flats, including storm chasing, attending motorsports events, and exploring the endless delights of the Austin area, where she’s lived since childhood. When not writing or hunting & gathering at Whole Foods, Sara spends time with friends & family and enjoys live music and dancing.

—————————————–
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
FOUR SIGNED COPIES OF RACING STORMS!
September 19-28, 2017
(U.S. Only)

 

 

 

 


CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:
9/19
Author Interview 1
9/20
Review
9/21
Notable Quotable
9/22
Review
9/23
Author Interview 2
9/24
Playlist
9/25
Review
9/26
Guest Post
9/27
Excerpt
9/28
Review
   blog tour services provided by
  

 

1 Comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours

Review & Giveaway: These Healing Hills by Ann H. Gabhart

THESE HEALING HILLS

by

ANN GABHART

  Genre: Historical Romance / Christian

Publisher: Revell

Date of Publication: September 5, 2017

Number of Pages: 368

Scroll down for giveaway!

Bestselling Author Transports Readers to the Appalachian Mountains for Adventure and Healing

Packed with history, These Healing Hills by bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart introduces readers to the fascinating and difficult life of frontier nursing.

When the soldier Francine Howard planned to marry after WWII writes to tell her he is in love with a woman in England, Francine is devastated and in need of a change. She seeks a fresh start in the Appalachian Mountains, training to be a nurse midwife for the Frontier Nursing Services.

It is in these mountains that Francine crosses paths with Ben Locke, a soldier still very much suffering from the horrors of war. With his future shrouded in as much mist as his beloved mountains, he’s at a loss when it comes to envisioning what’s next for his life.

While Francine and Ben find they are from completely different worlds and possess very different values, they both learn that things don’t always go the way we plan. Ann H. Gabhart invites readers to witness the healing power of love and step forward to tantalizing new possibilities. 

Praise for These Healing Hills:

“Reading These Healing Hills is like wrapping up in a beloved quilt and stepping back in time. Ann H. Gabhart captures a fascinating slice of Appalachian history in this tale of a mountain midwife and a soldier, bringing it to life as only a native Kentuckian can. Poignant and romantic, witty and wise, with enduring spiritual truths, this is my favorite novel of hers to date.”

—Laura Frantz, author of A Moonbow Night

“What a wonderful story! Filled with true-to-life characters (including some four-footed ones) and fascinating historical details, These Healing Hills is a beautifully written, heartwarming story of life in the Appalachian Mountains at the end of the Second World War. Ann Gabhart combines vivid descriptions, meticulous research, and a deep understanding of the human heart to create a story that will linger in readers’ memories long after the last page is turned. This is a book to savor, not just once, but over and over. A true keeper.”

—Amanda Cabot, bestselling author of A Stolen Heart

“Ann H. Gabhart delivers a rich tale set in Kentucky’s Appalachian Mountains at the close of World War II. Francine buries the painful loss of the man she loves beneath the difficult work of a frontier nurse-midwife. The mountain people touch a place deep in her heart, and she gladly sacrifices the life she always wanted in order to serve them. But can she ever be truly happy among the hills and hollows where modern medicine often gives way to ancient folk cures? These Healing Hills is a fascinating and beautifully crafted story that I highly recommend.”

—Virginia Smith, bestselling author of The Amish Widower

“You are sure to enjoy this endearing story of love lost and found in the enchanting hills of Kentucky.”

—Jan Watson, author of the Troublesome Creek series

CLICK TO PURCHASE:

300b2-review
I love reading historical fiction as an adult because history was one of my worst subjects in school growing up. Books like this teach me something about a time period, place, or people that my history classes either failed to cover or that my overstimulated teenage brain couldn’t comprehend at the time. How fascinating that a British woman would choose to start a midwivery school in America; in Kentucky of all places!
I imagine that the women who joined the Frontier Nursing Service were plucky and maybe even adventure junkies. Or perhaps they just wanted to save the poor and uneducated women and children from early deaths like FNS founder, Mary Breckinridge. At any rate, these women often left a life of comfort to rough it out among people who sometimes did not appreciate their assistance.
Gabhart’s use of dialect in the story is among the best I have set eyes on. With other books I’ve read, I often have to read passages aloud to decipher clunky dialect. But this was never the case with this book. The author’s writing style is natural, giving the characters an added dimension of authenticity.
There were times where I thought that the mountain people stereotypes were drilled in a bit much, but I think that Gabhart intended to drive home the stark contrast between outsiders and the mountain people. You know, just in case the reader is not aware of the conflicts that existed during that time in the Appalachian area. My only prior knowledge of these issues came from reading Christy by Catherine Marshall years ago. I like that Gabhart’s portrait of the mountain people is much kinder than Marshall’s.
Maybe because I’m a delayed launcher myself, I felt like this was sort of a coming of age book. After suppressing her true desires to please her mother and fill the void of her father’s absence, Francine finally goes out into the world alone to find out what she’s made of. Not to mention, she is finally free to do things that she has never been able to do before. The devastation of her broken engagement is reminiscent of that first heartbreak. Francine might be 23 years old, but Seth was her only boyfriend and high school sweetheart. I could also relate to the complicated mother-daughter dynamic.
I found this to be a really lovely book and it has been added to my collection of cozy books to be reread while drinking a nice cup of cocoa.

Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels—The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted—as well as Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, Love Comes Home, Words Spoken True, and The Heart of Hollyhill series. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. 

—————————————–

GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!

Grand Prize:

Copy of These Healing Hills + The Kentucky Snack Basket (11 items including a Derby Pie Tart, Bourbon Pecan Brittle, Bourbon Chocolates, Spiced Pretzels, Modjeskas, Coffee, Snack Mix, Candy Bar, Caramel Corn, and a Horseshoe from Churchill Downs!)

First Runner-Up:

Copy of These Healing Hills + $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card

Second Runner-Up:

Copy of These Healing Hills + $10 Starbucks Gift Card

September 5 – 14, 2017

(U.S. Only)

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:

5-Sep

Playlist

6-Sep

Review

7-Sep

Character Interview

8-Sep

Review

9-Sep

Guest Post

10-Sep

Review

11-Sep

Scrapbook Page

12-Sep

Excerpt

13-Sep

Review

14-Sep

Author Interview

   blog tour services provided by

  

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours

Review & Giveaway: Chasing Secrets by Lynette Eason

CHASING SECRETS
Elite Guardians, Book 4
by
Lynette Eason
  Genre: Romantic Suspense / Christian
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: August 1, 2017
Number of Pages: 336
Scroll down for giveaway!
Intensity. Skill. Tenacity.
The bodyguards of Elite Guardians Agency have it all.
When a photo leads investigators in West Ireland to open a twenty-five-year-old cold case, Elite Guardians bodyguard Haley Callaghan’s life is suddenly in danger. Haley knows how to take care of herself; after all, she’s made a career out of taking care of others. But after she has an uncomfortably close call, Detective Steven Rothwell takes it upon himself to stay with her—and the young client she has taken under her wing. A protector at heart, he’s not about to let Haley fight this battle alone.
In a sweeping plot that takes them into long-buried memories—and the depths of the heart—Haley and Steven will have to solve the mystery of Haley’s past while dodging bullets, bombs, and bad guys who just won’t quit.
Praise for the Elite Guardians Series:
“A thrill ride from the first page until the last.”
—RT Book Reviews, top pick, 4½ stars for Always Watching
“Witty dialogue and a simmering attraction will have readers flying through this tension-laced thriller.”
—Family Fiction on Without Warning
“Fast, furious, and flirty, Lynette Eason’s relentless suspense barely gives her readers time to catch their breath.”
Relz Reviews on Moving Target
CLICK TO PURCHASE:

300b2-review
Girls who kick butt have been all the rage for a while now, and I will admit that this isn’t the first novel that I’ve reviewed here featuring a beautiful, law enforcing woman. But this book proves to be in a class of its own when we find out that Haley Callaghan, a member of the all-female Elite Guardians agency, might be the lone survivor of a massacre 25 years prior. If Haley is Aileen Burke, then she is the heiress of Rock Moran Castle in Ireland and stands to inherit a fortune.
When Haley is off duty from her bodyguard gig, she mentors troubled teens at a center she runs on the rough side of town. It seems that as soon as she tries to help a new kid who crosses her path, the bullets start flying. Haley thinks the neighborhood thug is behind the attempts on her life, but we know that someone has been tailing her for some time and is probably trying to figure out her true identity.
Lucky for Haley, she is friends with local law enforcement who have her back. Steven, the new guy on the town’s police force, especially has his eye on her. Steven grew up in the area but hadn’t lived there for years. Eason shares what memories haunt Steven gradually as she also allows Haley to remember snippets of her escape from a violent demise. As Haley tries to help heal Steven of his past, Steven tries to prevent Haley’s past from stealing her future.
I have to stop here because I don’t want to ruin the end. I can usually guess who the bad guy is, but I was wrong on this one. Drop me a comment if you guessed right. This book was all kinds of suspenseful and I plan on reading the rest of the Elite Guardians books.

Lynette Eason is the bestselling author of the Women of Justice, Deadly Reunions, and Hidden Identity series, as well as Always Watching, Without Warning, and Moving Target in the Elite Guardians series.

She is the winner of two ACFW Carol Awards, the Selah Award, and the Inspirational Readers’ Choice Award. She lives in South Carolina.




—————————————–
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
Grand Prize:
Booklover Basket (18 items including a coffee mug, retro library memo cards, coffee & tea, delicious snacks) & Set of the Elite Guardians Series
First Runner-Up:
Personal library kit & Set of the Elite Guardians Series
Second Runner-Up:
$10 Barnes & Noble gift card and Set of the Elite Guardian Series
August 1 – August 10, 2017
(U.S. Only)

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:
8/1
Excerpt 1
8/2
Review
8/3
Author Interview 1
8/4
Review
8/5
Guest Post
8/6
Character Interview
8/7
Review
8/8
Author Interview 2
8/9
Review
8/10
Excerpt 2

   blog tour services provided by
  

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours

Review & Giveaway: A Matter of Trust by Susan May Warren

A MATTER OF TRUST
Montana Rescue Series, Book 3
by
SUSAN MAY WARREN
  Genre: Contemporary Romance / Action / Christian
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: July 4, 2017
Number of Pages: 336
 SCROLL DOWN FOR GIVEAWAY!

Champion backcountry snowboarder Gage Watson was at the top of his game when one of his fans crashed and died—a death blamed on Gage. After being sued for negligence and stripped of his sponsorships, Gage had no choice but to leave the limelight behind and search for a new life.
Although Gage is now working as a ski patrol in Montana’s rugged mountains, as well as serving on the PEAK Rescue team, he still can’t find peace—or forget the woman who betrayed him.
As a former attorney and one of the youngest senators in the country, Ella Blair is used to being in the public eye. But she does have one secret that has remained hidden—a secret that could have saved Gage his career. Wracked with regret, she’ll do almost anything to atone for her betrayal of him.
When Ella’s brother goes missing on one of Glacier National Park’s most dangerous peaks, the last thing Gage wants is to let Ella join the search. Not only will he have to find her reckless brother, but he’ll have to keep her safe as well. But Ella is undeterred, and suddenly Gage finds himself in a high-stakes adventure on a mountain with a woman who could cost him everything—again. In a world of dangerous heights, devastating injuries, and blinding snowstorms, Gage and Ella must put aside the past and learn to trust each other if they hope to survive.

Praise for the Montana Rescue Series
“Exciting rescues and an old mystery offer a thrilling, roller-coaster plotline and plenty of drama to keep the pages turning.” 
—Bookpage on Wild Montana Skies

“A fast-moving, high-stakes romantic adventure set against the backdrop of Glacier National Park, which will leave longtime fans and new readers alike anticipating the next book in the series.” 
—Publishers Weekly on Rescue Me
PURCHASE LINKS:
iBooks  | Kobo | Lifeway 
300b2-review
From the moment some kid in a T-rex costume snowboarded on the mountain, I knew I was in for an interesting read. Gage Watson is a guy who takes safety seriously and has to catch the kid and kick him out. What makes this situation even more interesting is that Gage used to be the world’s most celebrated freerider. When he sees people attempt dumb stunts, it is likely because they watched videos of him doing them back in the day. It was three years ago that he tried to talk a young man out of doing a dangerous carve down the mountain and failed. When the guy died, Gage was blamed and his whole life caved in.
After finding some peace as a ski patrolman for the PEAK rescue team, coming face to face with the young woman who stole his heart and later ruined his career, was the last thing anyone saw coming. But it turns out that she’s on a rescue mission of her own. Ella Blair follows her brother, Ollie, to the mountain when she learns of his plan to copy Gage’s most famous and extremely dangerous route. She knows it’s a long shot but pleads with Gage to rescue her brother and to let her go with him.
With emotions running high and the journey so perilous, old secrets soon start pouring out. The question of whether one person can really, truly forgive another for so much pain and suffering is presented among multiple plot lines. One person’s faith in God sparks belief in another. People are able to let go of the past in exchange for a brighter and happier future.
This book is really three stories in one. The main storyline is how Ella and Gage meet again, and the truth about what really happened three years ago. Another storyline follows two young women involved in a sort of love square. And the third storyline that leads into the next book in the series is about an unsolved murder of a young woman. It might sounds like a lot, but the sub-storylines break up what could have just been another gooey love story.
This was a great, suspenseful read. I plan to read the prior books in the series and look forward to reading the upcoming ones.

Susan May Warren is the USA Today, ECPA, and CBA bestselling author of over fifty novels, including Wild Montana Skies with more than one million books sold. Winner of a RITA Award and multiple Christy and Carol Awards, as well as the HOLT and numerous Readers’ Choice Awards, Susan has written contemporary and historical romances, romantic suspense, thrillers, romantic comedy, and novellas. 

————————————————— 
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
GRAND PRIZE: Huckleberry Coffee, Pair of Bookish Mugs, and Full Montana Rescue Series.
PRIZE TWO: A Matter of Trust + $25 Barnes & Noble GC.
PRIZE THREE: A Matter of Trust & $10 Starbucks GC
June 6-July 16, 2017
(U.S. Only)

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:
7/6
Character Interview 1
7/7
Excerpt
7/8
Review
7/9
Author Interview
7/10
Character Interview 2
7/11
Review
7/12
Playlist
7/13
Review
7/14
Deleted Scene
7/15
Review
   blog tour services provided by


 
 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours

Review & Giveaway: Hitchin’ Post by Julie Barker

HITCHIN’ POST
by
Julie Barker
 Genre: Children’s Picture Book / Rhyming / K-3
Publisher: LifeRich Publishing
Date of Publication: July 14, 2016
Number of Pages: 46
Scroll down for Giveaway!



Hard work and the cowboy life on the 6Bs Ranch is nothing new to old jackrabbit Hitchin’ Post.  Hitchin’ Post is a picture book written in rhyme describing old Hitch’s life on the 6Bs Ranch and his journey in finding what it truly means to be thankful.  His beloved ranch goes through a terrible drought, but Hitch decides that despite challenges, there is always something to be thankful for. He discovers that it is relationships with his friends and his beloved ranch that makes him feel rich. 

 

 

PRAISE FOR HITCHIN’ POST:
**2017 North Texas Book Festival Honorable Mention award*
Wonderfully told with beautiful, rustic illustrations. — Emily-Jane Hills Orford, Readers’ Favorite 
I can’t wait to share this book with my granddaughters! –- Amy, Goodreads Review
Hitchin’ Post is the most adorable story with the best illustrations! We love, love, love it!!! Cory, Amazon Verified Customer
PURCHASE LINKS:
300b2-review
My son is a little younger than the intended audience (he is 4 and in pre-kindergarten), but I read this book to him during my first read through. He asked me why Hitch’s hair was so long. He didn’t realize that the cowboy was actually a rabbit! I was also surprised that my son’s attention was drawn to the more realistic illustrations in the book: a herd of horses running, a windmill, and a spider inside of a jar. I could feel his attention wander at times, so I would say that the K-3 recommendation is right on the nose.
In a world of psychedelic colored children’s books, Hitchin’ Post is a nice, soothing story to flip through. I really admire Altman’s steady hand with the pen and her use of watercolors. I also found her choice of mixing realistic and cartoonish illustrations refreshing. I think I agree with my son, I found the realistic illustrations especially great.
I don’t read poetry often, so I had difficulty finding a comfortable rhythm as I read this book to my son the first time. I’m not a poet, but I think that the rhyming scheme changes throughout. That means you might need to read this aloud a few times to feel the rhythm as well. Which you will anyway because the story is adorable and reminds us that life is good and to be thankful for our friends.
I think this book is great for school aged kids. I think it would be especially inspiring for teachers to read this during Rodeo Art time in school.
 
Julie Barker was born and raised in west Texas, and currently resides in Quanah, Texas, with her husband and three children.  She maintained her west Texas roots into college when she attended Texas Tech University in Lubbock, receiving a degree in social work.  Julie has grown up surrounded by the ranching heritage, and felt drawn to share this way of life through the adventures of the little cowboy jackrabbit, Hitchin’ Post.  Hitchin’ Post marks Julie’s debut into the world of children’s literature.  She was fortunate to have her mother, artist Carolyn Altman, provide the cute, whimsical illustrations of old Hitch and the 6Bs, making this project extra special.
——————————————– 
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
Grand Prize:
1st Place Winner receives an eBook AND a Signed Print Copy
4 Runners-Up each have a choice of eBook OR Signed Print Copy
June 26-July 6, 2017
(U.S. Only)

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:
6/26
Review
6/27
Sneak Peek
6/28
Excerpt
6/29
Review
6/30
Character Interview
7/1
Scrapbook Page
7/2
Promo
7/3
Review
7/4
Cover Reveal
7/5
Review
   
blog tour services provided by

1 Comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours

Review & Giveaway: Heart on the Line by Karen Witemeyer

HEART ON THE LINE
Ladies of Harper’s Station #2
by
Karen Witemeyer
  Genre: Christian / Historical / Frontier Romance
Publisher: Bethany House
Date of Publication: June 6, 2017
Number of Pages: 336
Scroll down for Giveaway!
 

Grace Mallory is tired of hiding. She hungers for a normal life, perhaps even a suitor like two of her friends in Harper’s Station have found. But when the man she believes responsible for her father’s death discovers her whereabouts, survival takes priority.

Amos Bledsoe prefers bicycles to horses and private conversations over the telegraph wire to social gatherings with young ladies who see him as nothing more than an oddity. His fellow telegrapher, the mysterious Miss G, has been the ideal companion. For months, their friendship—dare he believe, courtship?—over the wire has fed his hope that he has finally found the woman God intends for him. However, when he intercepts an ominous message and discovers her life is in peril, Amos must shed the cocoon of his quiet nature to become the hero Grace requires.

PRAISE FOR HEART ON THE LINE:
“Witemeyer blends history, suspense, and romance with touches of humor. Women will enjoy this story that proves heroes come in unexpected shapes and sizes and not always on a white charger.”Christian Market

“Online dating meets 1890s Texas in this charming, spiritually deep, laugh-out-loud funny romance!”—reader review on Goodreads
 PURCHASE LINKS:
300b2-review
My heart did a happy dance TWICE immediately upon beginning this book. I love telegrams. I have no idea why. I think I have romantic connotations with the communication medium because of the Sound of Music. The second thing that made my heart so happy was that the main character was a strong, independent woman with a quick wit. I love female characters with gumption, but more on that later.
Harper’s Station struck me as sort of a Neverland, being a women’s colony and with a definite “no boys allowed” vibe hanging in the air. The few men who live or have access to the town must be trustworthy because the women of Harper’s Station are tough. Aunt Henry might be getting on in years but she can still pull a terrifying pistol on uninvited guests. I haven’t read the prequel to this book, but Witemeyer does a great job of filling in some details so you don’t feel lost. I got attached to each character quickly, so you know I will be going back to read Book One.
But back to the romance of telegrams, this book delivers that warm and fluttery feeling. The idea of falling in love with someone and recognizing them by the style of their tapping was so cute. It sort of reminds me of how my heart would race when my AOL instant messenger would sound when I got a late night chat request from my latest crush. Not the same, I know. That’s why telegrams are so wonderful.
If you didn’t catch on to Grace’s smarts from the espionage-worthy plans she works out with her father, you definitely see them when she tests the two strangers who come to town. I don’t want to ruin any of it, so I will just say that Witemeyer’s writing style paints the scene with Amos beautifully. And when you start to worry that our heroine might be duped by dashing good looks, Witemeyer drops tiny descriptive sprinkles that will dissipate those qualms.
The storyline is a little predictable if you’re an avid romance reader, but the details are what captivate you and urge you to read on. I still felt the suspense and would wonder what sequence of events would lead us to the happy ending.
I’m adding this book to my cozy reading collection: books that I read when I need some uplifting or simply want to feel comfy wrapped up in a blanket with hot cocoa. I highly recommend that you add it to yours as well.
 

Winner of the HOLT Medallion and the Carol Award and a finalist for the RITA and Christy Award, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer writes historical romance to give the world more happily-ever-afters. Karen makes her home in Texas, with her husband and three children. 

 





————————————-
GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!  GIVEAWAY!
Grand Prize:
1 WINNER: ALL FOUR OF BETHANY HOUSE’S JUNE HISTORICAL RELEASES, including Heart on the Line
June 23-July 2, 2017
(U.S. Only)

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:
6/23
Excerpt 1
6/24
Promo
6/25
Review
6/26
Guest Post 1
6/27
Review
6/28
Excerpt 2
6/29
Guest Post 2
6/30
Review
7/01
Promo
7/02
Review
   
blog tour services provided by
  

 

2 Comments

Filed under Book Reviews, Giveaway, Lone Star Book Blog Tours