Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Book Review: Certain Threat

Certain Threat is a mystery/suspense story and the third book in a series about a man's protection company.  Frank left his law enforcement career to start this company along with his partner and someone else.  This was the first book I've read in the series and the first one by the author.

The story was good, and I didn't guess who-dun-it.  Although I have never read the first two books of the series, I don't feel I missed a whole lot in book 3 -- in other words, it reads more like a stand-alone book than other serial books I've read.  I liked all of the characters.  None of them seemed caricaturish and most were distinct from each other.  I did feel like Frank acted out of character at one point, but it didn't detract from the story.  I also liked the subplot of Frank's partners (it would be a spoiler to say more).  Probably my biggest wish for this book is that it could have been less rushed and more filled out (which probably would have fixed the out-of-character moment).  It was definitely a quick read.  I started on it one night after finishing another book and then finished it the next night.  Had it been the only book I read, I could've easily read it in one night.  It's a good enough story that I want to read other books in the series as well.

Keep reading more about the book and author and scroll down to enter the giveaway!

Celebrate Lit offered me the chance to receive and review this book for free.

About the Book

Book: Certain Threat

Author: Kimberly Rose Johnson

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Date: October 6, 2020

Katrina White’s garage explodes and she fears someone is out to get her.

Not long after Katrina overhears two people talking about robbing the bank where she works, her attached garage explodes. With the help of her neighbor, Frank Davis, she escapes the burning home after a storage shelf falls over, trapping her beneath it.

The co-owner of Protection Inc. has one thing on his mind for the week of Christmas—rest and relaxation, but when his favorite neighbor needs his help he calls in his team. Unable to turn their backs on someone Frank clearly has feelings for, the co-owners agree to help out Katrina.

When things escalate, Frank is certain of two things—he cares a lot for Katrina and he can’t let anything happen to her.

Join the team of Protection Inc. this Christmas where love is in the air even in the midst of danger.


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Award winning author Kimberly Rose Johnson married her college sweetheart and lives in the Pacific Northwest. From a young child Kimberly has been an avid reader. That love of reading fostered a creative mind and led to her passion for writing. She especially loves romance and writes contemporary romance that warms the heart and feeds the soul.

Kimberly holds a degree in Behavioral Science from Northwest University in Kirkland, Washington, and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.


More from Kimberly

Certain Threat was one of my favorite books to write. There are three point of view characters. Two have been in the series from book one and the third is a new addition in this book.

I adore Frank, the hero of this book. The man is tough, honest, and always does his best to do the right thing. He’s a good example for his younger business partners who like to do things their own way, especially Carissa.

For me the most fun part about writing this book was getting inside Frank’s head. He comes across as tough and sometime gruff, but he is a marshmallow on the inside when it comes to Katrina, his neighbor. Katrina brings out a side in Frank we haven’t yet witnessed and it was a blast to write—no pun intended. LOL you’ll understand when you read the book.

I look forward to writing future books in this series and going deeper with the rest of the Protection Inc. team and their friends.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 19

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 19

Worthy2Read, October 20

21st Century Keeper at Home, October 20

Texas Book-aholic, October 21

Inklings and notions, October 22

deb's Book Review, October 22

Betti Mace, October 23

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, October 23

Debbie's Dusty Deliberations, October 24

Mary Hake, October 24

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 25

April Hayman, Author, October 25

Splashes of Joy, October 26

Artistic Nobody, October 26 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Because I said so -- and other adventures in Parenting, October 27

mypreciousbitsandmusings, October 27

Aryn the Libraryan, October 28

CarpeDiem, October 28

For Him and My Family, October 29

Daysong Reflections, October 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 30

Bigreadersite, October 30

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 31

Blossoms and Blessings, October 31

Simple Harvest Reads, November 1 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Bizwings Blog, November 1


To celebrate her tour, Kimberly is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


Pin It!

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Book Review and Giveaway: Light in the Mountain Sky

I love history, especially the 19th century.  I love reading about the resiliency and necessary ingenuity of the pioneers.  When this book came up for review (which I received for free from Celebrate Lit), I was intrigued by reading about a unique story set during my favorite time period.

Overall, I enjoyed the book.  I liked reading about the setting and the characters.  Meksem is a strong lady (". . . a warrior never looked back.  Always forward until the journey ended.", yet has invulnerability due to the death of her father when she was a young child.  She gives up a precious heirloom from him in order to give a special gift to Adam -- which is amazing considering I'm not sure if she had realized before how much he meant to her.  

At first, I wasn't sure how much I would like the book because the first chapter felt like an info dump which was necessary because the book is a sequel to book 2 in the series.  It was easy to get confused about the characters because I was introduced to them so quickly.  The subsequent chapters were better, and I did like the story.  It probably would be better to read the previous book in the series, but it's not totally necessary.  (From what I've read, the first book doesn't sound like it has the same characters, but I could be wrong.)

I really like how the author showed the emergence of faith in God in Meksem ("If only she could have such a God for herself.") and the renewal and growing of faith in Adam ("God made us to serve Him, but gave us our own will to choose whether we take a good path or the trail which does not please Him.").  The developing romance between them was just on the outside of my personal preference in description (nothing immoral), but probably most readers would enjoy it.

Here is another quote I liked from the book:
"Hope slipped into her chest.  She'd heard of the white man's Bible but hadn't realized the book contained directions straight from God Himself.  This way she could learn about the One she'd committed her life to.  And learning alongside this man who held her heart would be an adventure all its own."

Keep reading more about the book and the author and scroll down for the opportunity to win a $50 gift card! 

About the Book

Book:  Light in the Mountain Sky

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: September 29, 2020

This epic journey may seal her fate forever.

Determined to prove her worth, Meksem fiercely fought to earn her place among the warriors in her Nez Perce camp. When her half-sister is captured by an enemy tribe, she refuses to trust the rescue to anyone else. But her new friends insist on joining her mission, and she battles between relief and frustration at their presence. Especially the white man who peers at her as if he can see through the face of the warrior she struggles so hard to maintain.

Spaniard Adam Vargas thrives on adventure wherever his travels take him. He’s fallen in love with this Rocky Mountain wilderness, as well as the spotted horses the Nez Perce tribe raise. His fascination with this Indian maiden-turned-warrior catches him off guard though, including the way she seems to be fighting for more than her sister’s safe return.

The journey proves more perilous than any of the group expects, and the secret Meksem hides becomes impossible to conceal. If they live through this mission, the life they knew will never be the same again.

From a USA Today bestselling author comes another epic journey through breathless landscapes and intense adventure.


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Misty M. Beller is a USA Today bestselling author of romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

She was raised on a farm in South Carolina, so her Southern roots run deep. Growing up, her family was close, and they continue to keep that priority today. Her husband and children now add another dimension to her life, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

God has placed a desire in Misty’s heart to combine her love for Christian fiction and the simpler ranch life, writing historical novels that display God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.


More from Misty

Early Nez Perce Business Women

As I’ve been researching for my current Call of the Rockies series, I’ve had the pleasure of diving deep into the culture of the Nez Perce tribe. I found it interesting that one of the primary food sources of The People (as they called themselves) was camas roots.

But what really drew my notice was how the women would cultivate entire fields of camas root, store what they needed for their family through the winter, then use the extras for bartering. Some savvy women would become quite wealthy from their business dealings!

The bulbs of the camas plant are full of calories and nutrients, and each fall, Nez Perce families would travel to their particular camas meadow (a section of land whose camas rights had probably been passed down from generation to generation within their family). Many of these meadows were located near present-day Weippe, Moscow or Grangeville, where the onion-shaped bulbs grew thickly.

Women used pointed wooden tools to harvest the bulbs, and could often gather over 50 pounds a day, satisfying their full winter’s supply within just a few days.

Native American peoples who ate camas include the Nez Perce (Nimíipuu), Cree, Coast Salish, Kalapuya, and Blackfoot, and Yakama, among many others. Not all of these people groups harvested camas themselves. Instead, many relied on trade in order to procure it. Trade networks were established all the way from the Rockies to the Pacific Ocean, and a shrewd businesswoman who tended her camas meadows well could provide everything her family needed and more!

Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, October 13

Debbie's Dusty Deliberations, October 13

Splashes of Joy, October 13

A Baker's Perspective, October 14

deb's Book Review, October 14

Blessed & Bookish, October 15

Connect in Fiction, October 15

lakesidelivingsite, October 15

For the Love of Literature, October 16

Betti Mace, October 16

Texas Book-aholic, October 17

21st Century Keeper at Home, October 17

Inklings and notions, October 18

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 18

jeanette's Thoughts, October 18

Older & Smarter?, October 19

Library Lady's Kid Lit, October 19

For Him and My Family, October 20

Mary Hake, October 20

She Lives To Read, October 21

Writing from the Heart Land, October 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 22

Simple Harvest Reads, October 22 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Artistic Nobody, October 23 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Blossoms and Blessings, October 23

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 24

reviewingbooksplusmore, October 24

Bizwings Blog, October 24

Connie's History Classroom, October 25

Book Love, October 25 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 26

Bigreadersite, October 26


To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


Pin It!

Saturday, October 10, 2020

A Novel Pursuit (of Life and Learning) = A fresh look and focus for the blog!

New Blog!

I have decided to retire my 21st Century Keeper at Home blog at the end of 2020.  I am starting a new blog at A Novel Pursuit (...of Life and Learning)!  It will primarily focus on Book Reviews and Homeschooling.

I played around with book- and school-related titles for weeks before deciding on A Novel Pursuit.  I chose the word "Novel" because, well, BOOKS, and also because our journey in homeschooling is unique to our family (as homeschooling *should* be -- fit for your family, not to some imaginary standard that you think others follow -- as long as it adheres to God's standards, of course).  I chose the word "Pursuit" because the pursuit of learning is a God-given freedom and privilege that I enjoy and hope to instill in my daughter.

Between now and the end of the year, I will periodically repost articles I've written on homeschooling as well as my early book reviews, just to throw content over there that is relevant to my focus.  If you could pop over there every once in a while, I'd appreciate it.

My book reviews for Celebrate Lit will only be posted on A Novel Pursuit beginning in January.

Pin It!

Book Review & Giveaway: Brought to Book

Is it weird that I sometimes wish I knew book characters in real life?  Katrina Peters is a 40-ish college adjunct professor in a small town somewhere up north (Washington State, I believe).  She's smart and funny and loves books.   She loves them so much that she began volunteering at a local bookstore, helping to rearrange shelves from the useless alphabetical-by-title to separated by genre and alphabetical by the author (a bit OCD in a good way).  In the meantime, she sort of becomes friends with the rather curmudgeon owner Frank....who winds up getting killed!

So begins the story, and it culminates in finding out who was behind the murder and why.  I wasn't terribly surprised by the perpetrator, but I wasn't disappointed, either.  In the book, we meet a detective who becomes friends with Katrina as well as several of her other friends.  As a subplot which creates a little bit of conflict within the book, she feels like she has reached a crossroads in her life and doesn't know what God wants her to do next.  I really enjoyed the mystery and the setting of the book.  I also loved that I learned a new vocabulary word and I learned a little bit about forgeries of manuscripts.

This quote made me laugh:

"I just don't want to start anything if it isn't going to work out."

"Sorry.  There aren't any money-back guarantees.  Just take the next step." 

 What a great description of living by faith!  Just take the next step!

This next quote (the original author was not stated) sums up how I feel about the whole corona thing:

"Mortal dangers around me fly, 'till He bids, I cannot die.'

Google says it's a hymn by John Ryland.  If I have time tonight I would like to do a rabbit trail search for more info.

To sum it up, good, clean, Christian mystery, worth getting.  My only criticism is that sometimes it's a little wordy, but given the protagonist is an English literature professor, that fits with the story.  I will be reviewing the second book in the series soon.

About the Book


Book:  Brought to Book

Author: Barbara Cornthwaite

Genre:  Christian cozy mystery

Release Date:  June 24, 2020

There’s nothing in Emily Post about dealing with murder.

Katrina just wanted to spend time among the books at Frank’s Bookstore. Yes, that’s an unimaginative name for a store, but Frank’s an unimaginative guy–or he was.

Now he and his murder are the reason Katrina is spending her spare time with Wilkester detective, Todd Mason. Or, that’s what she tells herself.

Why would anyone want to kill Frank Delaney? Who would do it? And is Katrina herself even safe?

Mixing faith, literary humor, sweet romance, and a cozy mystery that will keep you guessing, Barbara Cornthwaite’s first Wilkester Mystery has everything you want for a cozy read.

Begin your investigation of Brought to Book today.


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Barbara Cornthwaite lives in the middle of Ireland with her husband and children. She taught college English before “retiring” to do something she loves far more; her days are now filled with homeschooling her six children, trying to keep the house tidy (a losing battle), and trying to stay warm in the damp Irish climate (also a losing battle). She is surrounded by medieval castles, picturesque flocks of sheep, and ancient stone monuments. These things are unappreciated by her children, who are more impressed by traffic jams, skyscrapers, and hot weather.


More from Barbara

Meeting of the Minds

A Wilkester Mysteries Introduction

Detective Todd Mason knew Katrina was the one the first time he met her. The woman had witnessed a murder—if not with her eyes, at least with her ears. She’d seen the man dying and called for help, afraid all the while that the killer would return for her. So much he’d been told before he went into the interrogation room.

“How’s she handling it?” he asked the officer who had arrived first at the scene and escorted her to the police station.

“Not too badly,” said Gary. “She’s in shock, of course, but she’s trying to hold it together. Katrina Peters. She’s in Room 2.”

He’d gone in then and gotten his first look at her. Late thirties or early forties. Brown hair that fell to her shoulders in loose waves. Brown eyes that were red-rimmed from crying. Hands clutching a tissue. She managed a faint smile when he walked in.

“Hello, Ms. Peters. I’m Detective Todd Mason. I need to ask you some questions, if that’s all right.”

“Miss,” she said, almost as a reflex.

“I beg your pardon?” Todd wasn’t sure he’d heard her correctly.

“It’s Miss Peters.” She said it firmly, repudiating the term Ms. even at such a stressful moment. Something made her blush then, and he saw her glance at his left hand. “Never mind,” she murmured.

She’s afraid I’ll think she’s trying to advertize her availability. It amused Todd to see the blush—if only she knew how refreshing it was to see a woman who would even be conscious of such a thing. Old fashioned, he thought. In a good way.

She answered his questions as calmly as she could, and even apologized for the tears that insisted on coming out now and then. When she alluded to Daniel in the lion’s den, he knew she really was out of the ordinary, and it took all his self-control not to offer to drive her home himself.

To join the investigation, read your copy of Brought to Book today.

Blog Stops

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 10

21st Century Keeper at Home, October 10

The Avid Reader, October 10

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 11

Remembrancy, October 11

For the Love of Literature, October 12

Worthy2Read, October 12

Genesis 5020, October 12

deb's Book Review, October 13

Blogging With Carol, October 13

Robin's Nest, October 13

Texas Book-aholic, October 14

Losing the Busyness, October 14

April Hayman, Author, October 14

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, October 15

Debbie's Dusty Deliberations, October 15

Inklings and notions, October 16

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 16

Daysong Reflections, October 16

Older & Smarter?, October 17

For Him and My Family, October 17

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 18

Just Your Average reviews, October 18

Lis Loves Reading, October 18

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 19

As He Leads is Joy, October 19

Emily Yager, October 19

Sodbusterliving, October 20

Artistic Nobody, October 20 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Labor Not in Vain, October 20

She Lives To Read, October 21

Bizwings Blog, October 21

Because I said so -- and other adventures in Parenting, October 21

Godly Book Reviews, October 22

Mary Hake, October 22

Vicky Sluiter, October 22

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 23

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 23


To celebrate her tour, Barbara is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a paperback of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


Pin It!

Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Book Review and Giveaway: Jack

I first read Jack when it came out nearly five years ago and really enjoyed it!  I may have even pre-read it during the writing stage, I don't remember.  At the time, I had had no exposure to Much Ado About Nothing, but really enjoyed the banter between Dirk and Deborah.  Although I am quiet and appear to be pretty easy-going, I have a slightly snarky sense of humor that I only let come out with people who can appreciate it and not be offended.  My daughter has inherited the same thing and I have to be careful about teaching her when it's appropriate to say things and when it's not!  A couple of months ago, before our school year started, I ordered a copy of a book that had Tales of Shakespeare meant to be read aloud to children (or read by them if they were old enough).  It had great reviews and I thought it would be an easy introduction of the Bard's stories.  Well, unfortunately, neither of us loved the book.  Some of the stories were creepy, others were boring, and the adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing was disappointing -- more telling than showing and not much dialogue.  So, I wound up giving the book to my cousin.  (I know others who love that book - it just wasn't a good fit for us.)

Back to Jack.  When CelebrateLit offered me the opportunity to read and review it, I jumped on the chance, because it'd been a while since I'd read it and because I already I knew I loved it.  I was given a free copy of it, but I already owned the book.  This book is easily 5 stars.  I might be a *little* bit biased since it's written by my friend Chautona, but, all in all, I love this book!  It combines a western and Shakespeare with a great story based on a ballad with witty dialogue, and infuses a faith element that elevates the book to something inspiring and convicting even with the heartbreak involved!  I encourage you to read Chautona's thoughts down below (and enter the giveaway for a free paperback and a $25 Amazon gift card).

My favorite characters are Jack and Deborah.  I admire Jack for standing for what's right based on both his experiences and what he knows to be right since he was saved.  I see his flawed humanity when he makes choices that are knee-jerk in effect when he doesn't take the time to stop and think beyond his heart-breaking situation.  I have been there!  I also love how he does the hard thing because it's the right thing.  Deborah is incredibly quick to speak, and I wish I were like that.

I hope that Chautona will write more books in this series soon and will maybe give a glimpse into the lives of some of the other minor characters (like Pete, Maggie, the new guy Gavin?, and even John the reprobate who deserves to be strung up but a redemption story would be nice, too).

About the Book

Book:  Jack

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre:  Historical Western Romance

Release Date: January 26, 2016

Women are trouble—lying, cheating, untrustworthy bundles of trouble.

Jack Clausen doesn’t need anyone but his horse and a boss who won’t interfere in his personal life—or lack of one.

Sure, he’s a lonely cowboy, but better lonely than brokenhearted.

If only he hadn’t met a girl who made him hope that honest and true women do exist. Maybe he wouldn’t be riding off into a snowstorm with a fresh determination to avoid women—indefinitely.

When Hazel Meissner sees a cowboy risk life, limb, and horse to save a child, she knows he’s someone special. When he finally gives her his heart, she considers herself the most blessed woman alive.

However, when he rides off without a word, she wonders if her heart will survive the loss.

One broken man. One trusting woman. One orchestrated misunderstanding that tears them apart. What’ll it take to bring Jack home again?

It’s Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing mashed up with the old ballad, “Cowboy Jack.”  Don’t miss a cast of characters inspired by the Bard himself—especially Dirk and Deborah (Benedick & Beatrice).

Jack: a lot of hullaballoo on the prairie.


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author


Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.


More from Chautona

The Inspiration I Hate to Love

The plaintive notes of a ballad filled the living room. People sat on couches and chairs or stood in the doorway, listening. Three steps up the staircase, out of view of most of the room, a little girl sat, chin in her hands, listening.

If you looked close, you’d see freckles dotting her nose and crooked teeth that never were too large for her mouth like most children’s were. Just a bit closer, and you’d see wide, hazel eyes riveted to the man with the guitar seated on the hearth. To his right, a cup of coffee and sometimes a shot of whiskey.

With a voice like Jim Reeves (the non-twangy Reeves, mind you), the songs told stories, like all ballads do—a little blind girl praying for her father’s future happiness, a girl of thirteen who barely escaped a massacre in 19th century Wyoming. “Hazel eyes,” the man called her. California Joe—he was a real man, although not as good of one as the song made out.

Sometimes the man sang happier songs, but most of them were slow, western ballads that could keep Nicolas Sparks writing for decades.

And the little girl loved them all—especially California Joe and one about a cowboy who left his sweetheart alone on the prairie after a quarrel. One called “Cowboy Jack.”

As you’ve probably surmised, I was the little girl, and that man who sang and stirred the hearts of our family at nearly every gathering was my father.

How I miss those days.

For years, I wanted to give Jack a happier ending. See, the song goes like this. A lonely cowboy (with a heart so brave and true) meets and falls in love with a maiden (with eyes of heaven’s own blue). Alas, as with all good romances, the couple quarrel and Jack rides away. He finds a new band of cowboys and would have been just fine, but someone asks him to sing a song to “drive all cares away.” Alas, the song he devises is one about a “lonely maiden who waited for her Jack.”

Of course, he rides off to ask forgiveness. It’s all his fault. He arrives too late. She died of a broken heart on the “lonely prairie where skies are always blue.”

After I began writing, the idea came to me to turn those songs Dad sang—old ones that had been passed on and down through many different versions—into novels. I’d write all the subtext the songs left out.

I’d give them happy endings.

Of course, that’s easier said than done. One by one, I figured out how to do it, but Jack… well, I didn’t want to change the stories. I just wanted to leave on hope instead of despair

Shakespeare to the rescue!

I was watching Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado about Nothing adaptation, and the answer came to me so clearly. It had the solution I needed. So, I smooshed the song and the play together. Inside, you’ll find the characters Shakespeare created (including Dirk and Deborah and their biting repartee—they steal the show!) in the setting and with the elements of the ballad, too.

Dad’s older now. His hands are gnarled with age, swollen with arthritis. His mind is slipping away. Today, you’ll find his guitar at my house. My son now owns it, but he doesn’t know the songs I heard played on the old Goya. Still, when I take it out of the case, tune it up, and pluck the strings, everything shifts. Suddenly, I’m nine years old again, sitting on my uncle’s stairs, just out of sight, watching. Listening. Heart breaking.

See, I’ll never hear my father play again, and I can’t play either. So, the songs will have to live on with stories of Mary, Jethro, Maggie… and of course, Jack.

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 21

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 21

Connie’s History Classroom, September 22

deb’s Book Review, September 22

For the Love of Literature, September 23

Bigreadersite, September 23

Texas Book-aholic, September 24

lakesidelivingsite, September 24

Inklings and notions, September 25

Sara Jane Jacobs, September 25

For Him and My Family, September 26

Reviewingbooksplusmore, September 26

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 27

Hookmeinabook, September 27

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 28

Artistic Nobody, September 29 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 29

Ashley’s Bookshelf, September 30

Lots of Helpers, September 30

She Lives To Read, October 1

Mary Hake, October 1

Daysong Reflections, October 2

Godly Book Reviews, October 2

Simple Harvest Reads, October 3 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Captive Dreams Window, October 3

Spoken from the Heart, October 4

Pause for Tales, October 4


To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away the grand prize package of a paperback copy of the book and a $25 Amazon gift card!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


Pin It!

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Book Review: Wish Upon a Star

Sometimes there's nothing better than a sweet, easy-to-read, light love story to snuggle with.  Having a Christmas theme makes it even better!  I really enjoyed this book, which I chose to review and was given for free, by Tabitha Bouldin.  I was first introduced to Tabitha when she was a guest on my friend Chautona's podcast called Because Fiction.  She is one of the authors who is writing books for the new Independence Islands series (two of which I have already reviewed).  When the opportunity came to read one of her other books, I jumped at the chance.

Bryce and his little girl Anna move to his hometown where he is now the owner of a bookstore in Jingle Junction, a fun fictitious small town where almost everyone is kind, friendly, and helpful.  Anna had already expressed her deepest wish (wished on her own Christmas star) of getting a mother for Christmas.  Within hours, Bryce sees three ladies whom he knew while growing up.  By the end of the book, he has made his decision about which one is the right one to be his wife and mother to Anna -- despite his reluctance to commit his heart so soon.

I liked the story as it is a perfect, easy-on-the-brain, sweet-for-the-heart, quick read.  The characters are believable and real.  Faith is interwoven in a way that doesn't feel preachy, yet encourages the reader in a gentle way.  In fact, I love the following quote from the book where Bryce's dad gives him some advice:

"Things will always be complicated, young man.  Don't let that stop you from accepting the gifts God throws in your lap.  He knows what He's doing."

This book is perfect for those who love Hallmark Christmas movies and light-hearted reads. 

Keep reading about the book and your chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card.

About the Book

Book:  Wish Upon A Star

Author: Tabitha Bouldin

Genre:  Holiday Fiction

Release Date: December 1, 2018

Bryce Masters had everything he needed…or so he thought. His six-year-old daughter, Anna, would disagree. They were going home, moving back to Jingle Junction where Bryce would take over the local bookstore just in time for Christmas. Losing his wife, Molly, during the birth of their daughter six years ago was tragic, but Bryce has no idea just how much it weighs on young Anna’s heart until she confesses her deepest wish. What Anna wants for Christmas is a mother, but Bryce’s heart is not ready to love again. Only God can give Bryce the desire to make Anna’s wish come true. Only He can heal the hurt and open Bryce’s heart to the power of love. But Bryce will have to be willing to listen. And when the perfect woman reveals a secret that could devastate them all, will Bryce be able to look beyond what was and accept what might be?


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Tabitha Bouldin has a Bachelor’s in creative writing from Southern New Hampshire University, where she graduated with honors. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and has been published with Chicken Soup for the Soul. When she’s not homeschooling her kids, you’ll find her curled up with a book. Tabitha’s genre of choice is Contemporary Christian Romance which she describes as: Adventure with heart.


More from Tabitha

Wish Upon a Star owes its existence to Hallmark’s Christmas movies. I could, and often do, watch their Christmas movies all through the year. Doesn’t matter how cheesy the storyline, I love them all. While I wanted to bring that sense of fun and feel-good romance, I needed a little oomph. So, I took some inspiration from “The Christmas Shoes” by NewSong. For the record, I love Hallmark and NewSong equally, so putting the two together was a natural fit.

The intention wasn’t to make a sad Christmas story, but there’s some pain Bryce has to manage while learning to love again. The best things come from overcoming that thing you never thought you could do. When you press on, with God’s guidance and with His approval, anything is possible. Bryce needs this reminder that even in the darkest nights, God is there.

Wish is part of the funky town I created and dubbed Jingle Junction, a place where it’s all Christmas all the time. Jingle Junction has only a few rules. First off, you can have any business you want, as long as the business name is an alliteration. Second, community is the name of the game. When someone’s in need, everyone pitches in to help.

For this story, I wanted to highlight homecoming. To do that, I needed Bryce to have a reason to come back to Jingle Junction. That’s where the song came in. If you don’t know the song, it’s about a little boy who wants only one thing for Christmas, and that’s a pair of shoes for his dying mother. I listen to “The Christmas Shoes” at least a dozen times a year. It’s heartbreaking but wonderful. It has that bit of hope I needed for Wish. For my story, Bryce’s daughter, Anna, lost her mother when she was born. The only thing she wants is the one thing she’s never had: a mother. It’s also the one thing Bryce cannot give.

The plan had always been to return to Jingle Junction. Bryce wants to raise Anna in the hometown where he was born, and he’s finally gotten the opportunity to make good on the plans he and his wife made when they first learned of her pregnancy. It took him six years to make good on his promise, and he’s not sure he’s made the right decision.

Wish Upon a Star is one of those books where I wanted to challenge myself by writing only from the male point of view. Although I always write alternating point of view in my romances, Wish has always been Bryce’s story. A story of coming home.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 24

deb’s Book Review, September 24

Texas Book-aholic, September 25

Inklings and notions, September 26

21st Century Keeper at Home, September 26

For Him and My Family, September 27

CarpeDiem, September 27

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 28

Older & Smarter?, September 29

lakesidelivingsite, September 29

Artistic Nobody, September 30 (Guest Review from Joni Truex)

Batya’s Bits, September 30

Ashley’s Bookshelf, October 1

Emily Yager, October 1

She Lives To Read, October 2

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 3

Pause for Tales, October 3

Sara Jane Jacobs, October 4

Connect in Fiction, October 4

Spoken from the Heart, October 5

Just Your Average reviews, October 5

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, October 6

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 6


To celebrate her tour, Tabitha is giving away the grand prize package:  a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


Pin It!