I do not read every book/author I spotlight or book tour I host!
Readers, Please research and use wisdom before buying

Saturday, October 31, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Jen J. Danna & Exit Strategy!

Good Morning and Happy Halloween!

Well, looks like Fall is finally here in SW Louisiana and certainly a welcomed relief from the hot, humid days we've had all Summer. Cooler temps will make hurricane recovery and clean up a bit easier.

Today's guest has visited before. She shared some info on her book on Wednesday Words with Friends in July and has been in the spotlight twice before so please welcome Jen J Danna....

In this taut new suspense series featuring NYPD detective Gemma Capello and her close-knit law enforcement family, a madman brings a halt to the heart of the city that never sleeps . . .

After her mother’s death during a bank robbery when she was a child, Gemma Capello grew up to become one of the NYPD’s elite hostage negotiators. In a family of cops, there’s rarely a day when a Capello isn’t facing down some form of threat. Still, despite their unpredictable schedules, they always find time for their annual family summer picnic. But this year, a sudden phone call changes everything.
A heavily armed gunman has taken hostages at City Hall. Gemma races downtown to join the rest of the Hostage Negotiation Team as they scramble to identify the captives—fearing the mayor may be among them. But as they scramble for answers and struggle to gain control of the circumstances, it becomes clear that the mayor is at the center of it all, just not in the way they initially believed.

With several lives on the line and a criminal who always seems to be one step ahead, Gemma is the only one able to connect with the suspect. Soon, she finds herself engaging in a battle of wits while enduring a battle of egos in the command center. With time running out and a mastermind who has proven he’ll do whatever it takes to get what he wants, Gemma risks it all—her career and her life—in a last-ditch effort to save the hostages. Now, she needs to figure out how to save herself . . .

Excerpt: “How’s your mom?” 

“I swear she’s worse almost every time I see her.” 

Gemma Capello studied her best friend with concern. 

She loved Frankie like a sister, and watching her mother’s illness eat away at her tore Gemma apart. “Did she know you?” 

“She doesn’t know any of us anymore. She held on to Dad the longest—now he’s a stranger too. It’s killing him. It’s killing all of us, but mostly him.” Gemma reached across the restaurant table to squeeze Frankie’s hand. “He’s a good man and they’ve been married for nearly forty years. His life as he knew it is over. It was already changing while she was in the house, but now she’s in hospice. . . .” 

“He’s mourning her while she’s still alive because the inevitable is coming. He can’t stand to rattle around the apartment alone, so if he’s not with her at the hospice, he’s in the bakery working himself into the ground. I get tired just watching him.” 

“And I get tired just watching you. Like father, like daughter.” 

“I’m hardly doing that mu—” 

“Francesca Russo, don’t give me that. Every time I’ve been in the bakery lately, it’s the two of you, shoulder to shoulder. You work just as many hours as he does, possibly more. You let him slip away to visit your mom knowing the bakery’s in good hands. You are doing that much. Now, tell me about your latest visit with her, so I’m up to speed when I stop by this week.”

Purchase links: Amazon.comAmazon.caAmazon.co.ukBarnes and NobleBooks-A-MillionBookshop.orgHudson BooksellersIndieBoundIndigoTarget, and Walmart.

A scientist specializing in infectious diseases, Jen J. Danna works as part of a dynamic research group at a cutting-edge Canadian university. However, her true passion lies in indulging her love of the mysterious through her writing.

With Ann Vanderlaan, she writes two series. Under Danna and Vanderlaan, they craft suspenseful crime fiction with a realistic scientific edge. Their five Abbott and Lowell Forensic Mysteries include DEAD, WITHOUT A STONE TO TELL IT; NO ONE SEES ME ’TILL I FALL; A FLAME IN THE WIND OF DEATH; TWO PARTS BLOODY MURDER; and LAMENT THE COMMON BONES.

Under the joint pseudonym of Sara Driscoll, they write the FBI K-9s mysteries series, starring search-and-rescue team Meg Jennings and her black lab, Hawk. The series includes LONE WOLF and BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE, STORM RISING, and NO MAN’S LAND. The fifth book in the series, LEAVE NO TRACE, will release in January 2020.

Jen is also the author of the upcoming NYPD Negotiators thriller series, with the first book, EXIT STRATEGY, releasing in August 2020. The second book in the series, SHOT CALLER, will release in 2021, and the third book, LOCKDOWN, will release in 2022.

Jen lives near Toronto, Ontario with her husband, two daughters, and three rescued cats, and is a member of the Crime Writers of Canada. You can reach her through the contact page on her website or by email at jenjdanna@gmail.com.

Social media links: Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Instagram

Hope you enjoyed today's spotlight and that you'll check back weekly for another and, of course, Wednesday Words with Friends.

Have a great day!


Wednesday, October 28, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends .... On Recovery....

Good Morning Friends,

Well, today's scheduled guest couldn't make it, so I'm going to share a few words with you on RECOVERY.

When we're faced with a physical injury or illness, our physicians focus on our recovery and continued health with treatment, diet, exercise, etc. But what about a mental, emotional or spiritual issue?

There are programs out there for just about anything. Mental Health is a problem most don't want to deal with - depression, anxiety, stress can affect even the youngest of those among us and it's up to us as parents, teachers, grandparents, even aunts and uncles to pay attention and do our best to help the children in our lives to learn to cope with whatever life throws at us.

Remember, children learn by example so if you/we are not dealing with the situations in our/your lives in a healthy manner, they won't either.

What's most important is there is NO shame in talking with a trained professional to get to a place of peace where healing can begin and/or continue.

Recovery is also banded about when a natural disaster affects your area. We here in SW Louisiana are under double-recovery efforts from two major hurricanes back to back. And those efforts will take months to complete. We'll be lucky to be finished with clean up by the time next hurricane season rolls around!

Another form of recovery, is that of dealing with the loss of a loved one. This too, can take weeks, months or even years to heal from.

My Advice: one moment, one day, one prayer at a time in any situation.

I hope you'll take this advice to heart and keep it in mind when situations try to overwhelm you.

A bit of news for you.... The AUDIO files for Tempered Joy have been uploaded. Next week after my brother leaves to return home to AK (he came in for our father's burial ceremony and to help clean up/out dad's home) I'll be proofing the files and the audio version will be available for the Christmas season!

My hope is Tempered Truth book will be also.

We'll see.

That's about all for today. I hope you'll drop by each week for Wednesday Words with Friends and Saturday Spotlight.

Until next time, take care and God bless.

Saturday, October 24, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on DiAnn Mills & Airborne

Good Morning!

Last month DiAnn introduced us to her latest release, Airborne and today she's talking to us about being a suspense writer and we'll get a peek into Airborne

Take it away, DiAnn....

You Know Youre a Suspense Writer When ...

I love this topic. When suspense writers get together, story discussions and plot twists keep the adrenaline racing. We can talk about suspense for hours because we live it, breathe it, explore, and write it. Our friends and families (unless theyre writers) have no clue how our minds work or where we find ideas for our next suspense novel. The un-writers among us think were strange ... Can you imagine that?


For example: my husband and I are driving into our subdivision. We see a neighbor has a roll of old carpet at the curb. Husband comments that this person had new carpet installed. Not me. Im wondering if theres a body rolled up inside that dusty mess ... Is it a man or a woman? How were they killed? Why? Does the killer think its a perfect crime? Then I spin out of control developing characters and plot.


See what I mean? To help every one of you understand the mind of a suspense writer, Ive compiled a list of telltale signs so youll not be shaken if you realize you might be gifted with the same propensity. But that’s okay! You’re in great company.

You know youre a suspense writer—

1. When you spend days planning the perfect crime.

2. When a stranger sends you a text in the middle of the night and immediately you think of a story about someone kidnapping your children.

3. When plotting a murder seems normal.

4. When you read the newspaper for strange stories you can spin to put your character in danger.

5. When the study of poisons is fascinating.

6. When you cant close your eyes on a camping trip because you know a lion, bear, or killer is waiting for you to fall asleep.

7. When you consult a weapon’s expert for ways to disguise a bullet.

8. When you wonder if the garbage bag discarded along the road contains body parts.

9. When the guy selecting apples at the grocery store looks like a serial killer.

10.When youre in church and you cant concentrate on the sermon because you left your heroine tied to a railroad track.        

If you fall into one of those categories, you might have the suspense writer virus! How about you? Do you fall into one of these categories?

Heather Lawrence’s long-awaited vacation to Salzburg wasn’t supposed to go like this. Mere hours into the transatlantic flight, the Houston FBI agent is awakened when passengers begin exhibiting horrific symptoms of an unknown infection. As the virus quickly spreads and dozens of passengers fall ill, Heather fears she’s witnessing an epidemic similar to ones her estranged husband studies for a living—but this airborne contagion may have been deliberately released.

While Heather remains quarantined with other survivors, she works with her FBI colleagues to identify the person behind this attack. The prime suspect? Dr. Chad Lawrence, an expert in his field . . . and Heather’s husband. The Lawrences’ marriage has been on the rocks since Chad announced his career took precedence over his wife and future family and moved out.

As more victims fall prey days after the initial outbreak, time’s running out to hunt down the killer, one who may be closer to the victims than anyone ever expected.

DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She is a 

storyteller and creates action-packed, suspense-filled novels to thrill readers. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. 

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She is the director of the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference, Mountainside Retreats: Marketing, Speakers, Nonfiction and Novelist with social media specialist Edie Melson where she continues her passion for helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. 

Connect with DiAnn here: www.diannmills.com

Airborne can be purchased through Tyndale or wherever great Christian fiction is sold. I've read this book and it is a great adventure! Check out my review on Amazon!

Thanks for sharing such great info with us DiAnn!

Hope you enjoyed the post friends and that you'll check by each week for Wednesday Words with Friends and Saturday Spotlight.

Until next time, take care and God bless.


Wednesday, October 21, 2020

#WendesdayWordswithFriends Welcomes Penelope Marcez!

Good Morning!

Please welcome Penny Marcez as she shares some thoughts about a craft she thoroughly enjoys....  

I learned how to crochet at the age of eight. That year my mother,  pregnant with my youngest sister, came close to having a miscarriage. Her doctor ordered her to spend the rest of the pregnancy on bedrest. So, Mom taught me to crochet. She also taught me to embroider, but I enjoyed crocheting far more. My mother gave birth to my sister and never crocheted again. I continued to crochet off and on—making afghans, hats, scarves, and baby sweaters. During various crises in my life, I discovered crocheting was a calming activity for stress. 

     One of my dearest friends, who lives in another town, joined a crochet group there. However, she didn’t know how to make hats. One day, she drove to my house and I showed her how to make a simple hat. She proceeded to make a thousand hats. But then her crochet group learned of a need for baby blankets and they decided to focus their efforts on that project. My friend wanted me to teach her how to make a baby blanket. She couldn’t get the hang of it. She handed me the yarn and asked me to make the blanket. So I did. 

     Then her crochet group learned of a need for prayer shawls. Again, my friend gave me yarn. I made several prayer shawls for her group. 

     Then I was diagnosed with breast cancer. 

     After finishing my cancer treatment, I decided our church needed a prayer shawl ministry. I took on the job and found there were many talented knitters and crocheters in our church who were delighted to get involved. 

     And then came the pandemic.

     As the old saying goes, “It’s an ill wind that blows nobody good.” Our church was closed, but with the lockdown the ladies of our ministry devoted more time than ever to crafting prayer shawls as well as lap blankets. Stores were closed, but they ordered yarn online. Their fingers never stopped moving. The production rate soared.

     We could not use big closet in the Parish Center where we usually store our work. That was no obstacle for the women of our ministry. They left their prayerful creations at my backdoor. It didn’t take long for my dining room to be overwhelmed. 

     But with everyone in lockdown, nobody wanted anything which might be contaminated with coronavirus, though all the items were washed and bagged in plastic. However, everyone wanted masks because none were available. Some of the women in our ministry—who also like to sew—began making masks. One of those women contacted the director of a nearby service organization who was willing to take some blankets and shawls for the elderly. I was delighted to clear out some of the shawls and blankets in my dining room. 

     Another woman in our ministry had a friend from a respite home for women undergoing cancer treatment. She was willing to take some of the shawls and blankets off our hands—even though her facility was closed at the time.

     The neighbor of one of our prayer shawl ministers belonged to the Methodist church just up the road. She suggested we join in to help them meet the goals of their projects for preemie hats and blankets, soap sacks, toddler blankets, and children’s winter hats. What fun! The women in our ministry joined theirs and three hospitals in the area received preemie blankets and hats. A local day care center received blankets for all the children, too. 

     Last, but not least, I remembered a contact I knew at a nearby nursing home. I asked her if she needed some lap blankets for the elderly clients in the home. She accepted them and said she’d be willing to take more. 

     I cleared out the dining room and breathed a deep sense of relief. 

     Then, one of the prayer shawl ministers sent me an email. She had three more blankets for me. 

     No one in this county will be cold this winter.

* * * *

Penelope Marzec grew up along the Jersey shore. She started reading romances at a young age and fell hopelessly in love with happy endings. Two of her inspirational romances won EPIC’s eBook Award and another was a finalist in that contest. Her paranormal, Irons in the Fire, was a nominee for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice award. 

     Her latest release is the third book in her Patriots’ Series, PATRIOT’S COURAGE. The story is about Ryan McGowan, who vows to kill every Indian in Ohio territory in retaliation for his brother’s death. At the Battle of Fallen Timbers, he breaks his ribs and finds a white woman sobbing over a dead warrior. When the captain assigns him to teach the woman English, he resents the task, but the woman melts his vengeance away. He begins to understand the way to peace is forgiveness. Then he learns the woman carries the child of her Indian husband in her womb.

     Màxkchulëns, a white woman adopted by the Lenape at the age of four, is confined at the fort and longs to return to her people. Though Ryan leads her to recall part of the faith her biological parents held dear, she struggles to understand it and the power of grace. Can she rely on that grace in desperate times? And will faith protect her unborn child as well? 

     For more information visit penelopemarzec.com.

Thank you so much for sharing with us today, Penelope! I know several people who loved to crochet too and although I learned to also, decades ago, it was never my thing. Who knows though....maybe someday.

Good luck and God's blessings.


Saturday, October 17, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Elizabeth Hull @chevyhull (AKA: Izzy James) & The Shopkeepers Widow!

Good Morning!

It is with my utmost pleasure to introduce you to brand new to me and fellow Pelican Book group author, Elizebeth Hull / Izzy James with her new release, The Shopkeepers Widow. Please give her a great big - W-E-L-C-O-M-E!

Delany Fleet, a widowed former indentured servant living in the colonial port of Norfolk, Virginia, dreams of having an estate of her own where she will never have to compromise her freedom.

When the only man she ever loved shows up with a load of smuggled firearms, Delany is forced to leave her home and her livelihood to protect her family and property from Lord Dunmore's raids and the conniving plots of a man who claims to be her friend. 

Now, with her destiny forever altered, Delany must find a new way to happiness. Can reconnecting with her husband's family and a former love be the path that God has for her?


Delany swung back into her shop looking for something to punch and rushed right into Field Archer’s chest. At once surrounded by strong arms and a strong need to bathe, Delany forgot to breathe. 

“Aunt Delany,” Ben laughed “Mr. Archer is here to see you.” 

“So I see, Ben.” She looked up into his twinkling brown eyes and stepped back a proper distance. Of course his height had not changed, but he had filled out. His chest was broad and solid. She pulled her hands back to her chest before she let them slide over to his shoulders. It was Field Archer. He was right here in her shop. 

“Mrs. Fleet.” His baritone strummed a girlish cord of humiliation that she thought long gone. 
Before she could respond, the door opened again. 

“Well, Mrs. Fleet, that’ll show them, won’t it?” John Crawley’s fat face was slick with glee. His small black eyes gave her the usual once over that made her feel exposed. She squelched a shudder and moved behind the counter. 

Field turned his back to them and moved toward the toy shelves. 

“The association will back down now.” Crawley wiped his hands down the front of his brown frock coat. “It won’t be long before we can get our ships out of here. We are saved, Mrs. Fleet.”

“What does his lordship want with a printing press?” 

“To silence the dirty-shirts.”He hooked his thumbs in the pockets of his coat. “No voice. No followers.” 

“It remains to be seen, Mr. Crawley, what the militia will do.” 

“We just saw what those yellow-bellies will do.” He bent forward over the counter, enough that she could smell his luncheon ale. “It will all be over soon, and we can get back to business.” 

“Was there something you needed, Mr. Crawley?” Delany stepped back from the counter and took a glance at Field hoping for an interruption. Seeing only his back, she gazed at the shelf beneath. A new box of wax inserts for missing teeth caught her eye. “Some plumpers for Mrs. Crawley, perhaps?” 

The red in Crawley’s face deepened to crimson. “No, thank you.” He checked his tone. “My mother is in need of nothing at the moment.” This time when he leaned in, the gleam in his eye hinted of impropriety. 

Delany leaned back. 

“Were you frightened?” He rocked back on his heels, looked over his shoulder at Field, rested his elbows on the counter, and breathed a rotten cloud. “I will protect you.”

Over my dead body. "Thank you, Mr. Crawley, for your offer, but I can take care of myself." She came out from behind the counter. "Now if there is nothing else" I really shouldn't keep my customers waiting." After a last glance at her" and then Field" he exited. 

Delany wiped the counter of his greasy imprint. 

When the doorbells tinkled, indicating the departure of Mr. Crawley, Field turned toward Mrs. Fleet. The insinuation in Mr. Crawley’s declaration of protection gave Field pause. Perhaps his mother had been wrong to send him here. 

Elizabeth Chevalier Hull,  Writing as Izzy James, award-winning author of The Christmas Gift, The Christmas Plainsong, and Finding Boaz, lives in coastal Virginia with her fabulous husband in a house brimming with books.

Find out more by connecting with her on her Website, Facebook, Twitter @chevyhull and Instagram @izzy.james

The Shopkeepers Wife can be found at Amazon, Ibooks, B&N, Kobo and Google Play.

Hope you enjoyed the post friends and that you'll stop by each week for Wednesday Words with Friends and Saturday Spotlight.

Until next time take care and God bless.


Wednesday, October 14, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends Welcomes Wendy Kendall @wendywrites1

Whew! The title of this post is a tongue twister for sure LOL! 

Today's guest is brand new so please give Wendy a huge, SWLA W-E-L-C-O-M-E....

A Passion For Purses & The Stories Of The Women Who've Carried Them 

I have reveled in a passion for purses many years. I enjoy all kinds. You name it and I'll claim it. My curiosity and wildly growing peronal collection led me to investigate the world of purses. That resulted in my new mystery novel Kat Out of the Bag, introducing Katherine Watson celebrated international purse designer and amateur sleuth.

Why do women love purses? I had my suspicions, of course. I followed many clues. I devoured everything there was to read about designers. I researched art appreciation. But it was when I interviewed every day women about their favorite purse, and learned about their incredible lives and families that's when I knew I was hot on the trail to uncovering the mystery of a passion for purses.

I met with a variety of women who enjoy purses. Their favorite purse, the one they told me all about,  was often a special gift, maybe a family member, loved one, friend, or mentor. Sometimes their purse was a style similar to another woman's who they'd known. Often it evoked a cherished memory, like an aunt who had a purse pocket with surprise candy treats for kids. There was a sisterhood here.

For some women their favorite purse represented a cause that they supported wholeheartedly. They were wearing their heart on their arm, or sometimes crossbody.

No matter how contemporary, these stories had roots in history. Yes, a woman's purse tells a story, that's unique and at the same time shared. The final piece of the puzzle fell into place. I traveled from Seattle, Washington to Little Rock, Arkansas to visit one of only three purse museums in the world – Esse. The ESSE Purse Museum does not simply showcase accessories. It makes HERstory tangible and familiar. ESSE is focused on honoring women, artisans and the stories that make us unique and connected.

Mystery solved! And my novel underway, about Katherine Watson the purse designer. She creates purses because it was a passion that her great grandmother had shared with her when she was a young child. It was then she learned  inside every purse there's a treasured story of the woman who carried it, and those stories are important. When Katherine ends up temporarily back in her hometown of Bayside, she decides to create a purse museum in honor of her great grandmother, and all the women who's stories would be told in the exhibits. Never did she imagine that the mayor would be murdered at the Gala Opening.

My character Moonjava is a fan of the hippies of the 1960's. She's also the museum historian. She loves the idea of showcasing history in creative exhibits. She shares a daily meditation with anyone who will listen, often with interesting repercussions.

Amber is the college student who manages the museum gift shop. She's a wristlet gal. She stumbles on her own cold case mystery when she and her boyfriend Michael find a note in a donated vintage purse.

While Michael and Amber partner on their cold case, Katherine finds herself investigating the murder with, and sometimes at odds with local cop Jason Holmes and his K-9 partner Hobbs. Jason ends up learning some things about purses as the mystery deepens.

I wrote Kat Out of the Bag for the fun of mysteries, for the fun of creating the characters, for the women who are making history right now, and to honor memories of the women who have gone before.

Wendy Kendall has a passion for purses and stories of the women through history who carried them. Her cozy mystery Kat Out of the Bag is the first book of the In Purse-Suit Mystery Series, introducing Katherine Watson an international purse designer/sleuth. Wendy is a blogger, editor, speaker, project manager, and syndicated columnist. Catch exciting author interviews on her YouTube Podcast—A Novel Talk, and the debut of her podcast – Wendy Kendall In Purse-Suit of Fashion. She loves her two sons, Alex and Brad and her Purrada cat.

Find out more and connect with Wendy by visiting her Website – Wendywrites.org

Blog – ApassionForPurses.blogspot

Facebook– Wendy Kendall, Mystery Author

Twitter - @wendywrites1

Podcasts – Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries . . . A Novel Talk . . . The Cozy Mystery Quartet

Columns – Recommended Reads and Kids Are Bookin' It

Esse Purse Museum

When celebrated international purse designer Katherine Watson hosts a gala for her Purse-onality Museum, she never expected the next day's headline to read: 'Murder at the Gala Prmiere.' But after a dead body is found during the event, that's exactly what happened.

Working to solve the murder, Katherine matches wits with local cop Jason Holmes and his K-9 partner Hobbs. Although Holmes and Watson disagree often, they discover an undeniable attraction building between them. But they'll have to put their feelings on hold and focus on solving the murder, before Katherine becomes the killer's next knock off.

Excerpt -

       “There's an officer nearby. We'll alert him. Hold the line.”

       Katherine was worried by the operator's monotone. Did she understand the urgency? Katherine watched in disbelief as the shadow figure moved toward the shed attached to the waterwheel. Too late, she thought to get a picture after the person disappeared inside the shed.

       “Oh no,” Katherine muttered. She spoke into the phone, “Hurry, I think it's the killer, maybe looking for something left behind? Hello?” Had the operator hung up?

       “Yes, the officer is on the way. Please stay on the line.” The operator's voice now sounded bored.

       A sharp ray of light from inside the shed cut through the darkness. The light jumped around. Sweat collected on Katherine's upper lip as she imagined the killer looking through her things for something, maybe critical evidence. Fear gave way to irritation at the invasion. Irritation gave way to anger. Someone had to stop that killer from removing whatever incriminating thing was so critical it had driven a return to the scene of the crime. Katherine wanted to scream. Where were the police? Maybe MJ was right about them. She pressed against the french doors. The light in the shed went out. Her breath caught in her throat. The silhouette walked out of the shed toward the alley leading to the maze that burrowed throughout Bayside and beyond.

       Katherine spoke gruffly and fast, “Hello. Where's your officer? The suspect is getting away.”

       “Ma'am, please stay calm and hang on the line. They're on the way.”

       Katherine unlocked the door to the yard and whispered to the 911 operator, “I'm in pursuit.”

Kat Out of the Bag is available on Amazon

Purse-Stachio Makes A Splash is available on  Amazon

Such an interesting post, Wendy and great premise for your books/characters! I'm not a huge fan of purses, mine is a usually a black one, on the smaller side.

Wishing you the best of luck and God's blessings.


Saturday, October 10, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Kara O'Neal & The Sheriff's Gift!

Good Morning from Mt. Belvieu, TX!

We evacuated Thursday and are hoping to go home tomorrow. Not sure yet, the extent of damage from Hurricane Delta but praying it's not so extensive that we have no home to go to. Prayers from you appreciated.

Today's guest has visited before with some of her Pike's Run series, so please welcome Kara O'Neal back with The Sheriff's Gift, Texas Brides of Pike’s Run Series, Book 2.... But first a little note from Kara about the book.....

The Sheriff’s Gift was a wonderful book to write. It allowed me to delve into the lives of the people in the town I was creating. Alice Parker, the heroine of the story, is the schoolteacher, and Conner Lonnigan, the hero, is the sheriff. They are highly involved in the lives of the townsfolk and are often called upon to help. Alice and Conner are strong-willed people with caring hearts and no-nonsense attitudes. Not only are they perfect for the town, they are perfect for each other.

The Sheriff’s Gift sets up several other books in the series. Many of the students, once they are old enough, end up with their own stories. It has been so much fun watching them grow and change and establish their futures. Writing is a joy, and I’m so glad I get to spend time with these wonderful characters!

Strong-willed and independent, Alice Parker is certain she’s meant to be a school teacher. She accepts her first position in Pikes Run, ready to mold the minds of young children, but unprepared to deal with her attraction to Sheriff Conner Lonnigan. If the board finds out she’s tumbled into his embrace more than once, she would be fired.

Sheriff Conner Lonnigan is awed by Alice Parker. He falls for her almost immediately, but the demands at home forbid him from marrying. Conner’s duties as sheriff control his days, and his mother’s panic attacks control his nights. He doesn’t have the freedom to devote himself to Alice, but that can’t stop him from pursuing her anyway.

Alice and Conner fight their love for each other, but the wants of the heart become too much to ignore. As they battle the demands of their jobs, the couple finds that ultimate fulfillment can only be found in each other's arms.


“What is it?” Alice asked.

He didn’t reply until she was outside. “I have somethin’ for you.”

She gave him a sideways glance. “I hope it isn’t another complaint from Beulah.”

He grinned down at her. “Nope.” He jerked his head in the direction of the yard. “Come on.”

She followed him into the yard and toward the barn. When they entered the building, the cows lowing and the horses swishing their tails, he stopped and pulled her into an empty stall.

They were alone except for the animals. This was what she’d tried to avoid, and here she was, despite her usual unflinching self-control, in the wrong situation. Though her heart exalted, her mind raced for ways to get this over with quickly.

He smiled down at her, his hand still at her elbow from when he’d pulled her over. “You look pretty today.”

“Only today?” she heard herself ask. Oh, dear! She was flirting.

He chuckled low and deep. “Every day. You’re always pretty.”

In her wildest dreams, she’d never thought to hear a man say such a thing. “What did you want to show me?”

He flushed beneath his confident smile. “A present. I ordered it for you.”

Alice’s heart stopped then sped like a locomotive. “Truly?” she whispered.

He nodded.

“But…but I didn’t get you anything,” she protested.

His smile turned soft, and her knees went to jelly. “Just havin’ you here is present enough.”

If he said anything else as tender and beautiful, she might faint from want of him. “Oh,” she murmured.

He gazed at her for a few moments more before reaching into his coat and pulling out a box wrapped in brown paper. He handed it to her.

Gingerly, she took it and unwrapped it slowly, wanting to savor the moment. Once the paper was gone, she sprung the latch on the box and lifted the lid. Her throat ached with emotion when she saw what sat in the velvet casing.

A small ceramic house, the rooftop covered in snow, stared up at her. It was beautiful. She ran a finger over its smoothness. “Thank you,” she rasped.

“There’s more.” He took it from her and lifted it out of its case. “It’s open in the back. You can put a candle here and since the windows are cut out, it’ll look like there’s—”

“Firelight,” she breathed. Awed and deeply touched, she gazed up at him. He’d remembered her memory of her mother and bought her a gift to commemorate the time. “Oh, Conner. How wonderful.”

He swallowed. “You like it?”

She closed her eyes in disbelief then opened them once more to look up into his handsome, dear face. “I adore it.”

And in that moment, everything she’d ever wanted changed forever. She loved Conner Lonnigan with all her heart. The emotion stampeded through her, causing her to tremble with its force. She couldn’t stop herself from rising up and taking his lips with hers.

Born and raised in Texas, the state had to be the setting for my first series. From the food to the fun, like floating the rivers, it is the fire in my blood that inspires me. My family and friends take center stage in my books. My sisters and best friends are my heroines, and my husband created my favorite hero. Love and family are the point of my stories, and I seek to entertain, relieve stress, and inspire people. Books can take one on a journey that one can relive over and over. I am extremely grateful to those authors who did that very thing for me. I learned and I fell in love with their words and characters. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Please visit me at www.karaoneal.com or connect with me on Social Media:

Bookbub –  https://www.bookbub.com/profile/kara-o-neal

Amazon –  http://www.amazon.com/Kara-ONeal/e/B00FL19TH8/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1465007993&sr=8-1

Barnes and Noble –  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/kara+o'neal?_requestid=845025

Facebook –  https://www.facebook.com/KaraONeal84/

Twitter –  https://twitter.com/KaraONealAuthor

Pinterest –  https://www.pinterest.com/karaoneal7/

Goodreads –  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7278350.Kara_O_Neal

Blog -- http://www.karaoneal.com/blog

Blog – The Story Continues -- http://www.karaoneal.com/the-story-continues


Wednesday, October 7, 2020

#WednesdayWordswithFriends..... I am D.O.N.E!

 I'd wish you a good morning and for all intents and purposes it IS a good one....supposed to be lovely weather today, I've been home nearly a week since running from Hurricane Laura.... 


Here we go again. Hurricane Delta is heading right for Louisiana and although the "projected" track is East of me, we're still going to feel it's impact.

I'd hoped to share good news with you but not much has happened in a week. Still playing catchup and if we have to evacuate again, I'll be doing that for the rest of the year.


Prayers appreciated and while you're praying, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and my friend and fellow Pelican Book Group author, Barbara Britton, has a post about Managing Publication with Cancer. I think you'll find it interesting and encouraging. 

It is also Domestic Violence Awareness Month. If you haven't read Tempered Dreams or The Visionary you're missing out on great stories of hope that deal with this issue. 

Get a peek into my window and a peek into Tempered Truth on DV Stone's blog today!

Oh, before I forget, the winner of September's gift card is 

Liz Flaherty!

Not much else to talk about Friends. I hope you have a blessed day and that you'll check back weekly for Wednesday Words with Friends and Saturday Spotlight.

Until next time take care, be safe and God bless.

Saturday, October 3, 2020

#SaturdaySpotlight is on Carol Raj & Charlotte Masterson Gets A Life!

Good Morning October!

I'm home! For the first time in over a month I've slept in my own bed and am sitting at my own desk. Electricity, water and cable have been restored and I am home. Guess Dorothy was right when she told ToTo.... There's no place like home. 😄 

Today's guest has visited once before with the first of her YA books. Today we get a peek into her latest so please welcome Carol Raj back with Charlotte Masterson Gets A Life!

High school sophomore Charlotte Masterson isn't smart enough to be a nerd, musical enough to be a band geek, or pretty enough to be popular. But when the handsome quarterback unexpectedly asks her out, she becomes part of the in crowd. It's every girl's dream come true.

Too bad she still has to depend on good old Rodney, teachers' pet, for rides. Too bad her mother is so unreasonably strict. A ten PM curfew? Just because she lied? It's not fair.

But maybe there's more to other people than Charlotte realizes. And maybe she doesn't even know everything about herself. When Charlotte Masterson gets a life, life gets interesting.


“It’s your own fault, Charlotte.” Mom’s digging wet clothes out of the washing machine.

My fault? How can she possibly think that?

Mom continues. “We had simple rules, and you didn’t follow them. You not only didn’t follow them; you lied to us. That’s what I hate most of all. The lying. How can I ever trust you again?”

“But Mom…”

“There’s no but Mom.” She throws the clothes into the dryer like she’s pitching fastballs.

I understand that lying’s wrong. I didn’t like that Rodney lied to me about band practice. But when it comes to my mother, lying is the easiest way to avoid conflict.

“But Mom, Saturday night there’s a party for the football team. It doesn’t even start until eight. How can I be home by ten?”

“You should have thought of that before you broke the rules.” She slams the dryer door shut.

“But all the football players will be there. All the cheerleaders. All the cool kids.”

“So you’re a cool kid now?” Mom stares at me.

As long as I’m dating Tony, I’m in the cool crowd. I shrug.

“Will there be beer at this party?” Mom pushes the dryer’s start button.

The clothes start going round and round just like my thoughts. How can I answer that question? If I say yes, I’ll be grounded. If I say no, I’ll be lying. I’m almost certain there’ll be beer. “If there is, I won’t drink any. I promise.”

“So there might be beer? Is that what you’re telling me? There might be beer at a party for underage teens?”

“Maybe. I don’t know. Nobody discussed the eating and drinking arrangements with me.”

I should not have said that. Not in that tone of voice. But it’s too late to take it back.

Carol has been writing for many years. Mostly articles and short stories for children. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and lives with her husband of more than 40 years in beautiful New England. Find out more about Carol by visiting her website and connecting with her on Face Book and Good Reads.

Charlotte Masterson Gets a Life can be found at Amazon and B&N

Thanks for sharing your new book with us Carol! We certainly wish you the best of luck and God's blessings with it.

There's been so much going on friends, I haven't picked a gift card winner for September yet, but that will be announced on Wednesday so be sure and stop by.

Until next time, take care and God bless.