WHAT'S IT GOING TO BE?

What book should you read next? What words should you write next? Whether you're a reader, a writer, or both, you need look no further for ideas and pointers to help you make up your mind. You might even get your next book for free--and signed by the author!

Sometimes I even give away my own novels. My Inspirational romances and devotionals are pictured below and are detailed on my Books page. You can always count on a trace of humor in my novels and nonfiction. Whether you're a teen or a woman mature in years, I think these stories will ring true.

Read on, and discover some of today's most appealing Christian novelists, their latest books, and their words of wisdom and imagination. Enjoy!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Eleanor Gustafson and Free Books!

 photo image003_zpsbfa1c615.jpgDynamo appears to be about a nasty, five-gaited stallion, but the real main characters are Jeth and God. They seriously tangle, but in the end, God wins. ☺

Before we visit today's author, I want to announce that the winners of the signed copies of The Guy I'm Not Dating, by yours truly, are:

strgth4yu@ . . . and   ABreading4fun@ . . .

and the winner of the signed copy of A Captain for Laura Rose, by Stephanie Grace Whitson, is:

pattymh20009@ . . .

Congratulations! I'll email you today to get your mailing addresses, and we'll get your books to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right (above my list of books) in order to participate in future book give-aways! Subscribers are entered a second time when they comment.

And now let's visit with Eleanor Gustafson, author of Dynamo (Whitaker House, April, 2014).

 photo GreenEllie_zps852f3a49.jpegEleanor K. Gustafson began thinking up stories when she was five or six. When she started to read, God drew her to Himself with, yes—a story. Her fascination with story continued, but after reading early written attempts, friends and even her mother told her straight out to stick to music as a career. She pushed manfully along, however, and began publishing both fiction and nonfiction in 1978.

Dynamo is her fifth novel and builds off her lifelong love of horses. Her previous title with Whitaker House is The Stones: A Novel of the Life of King David.

A graduate of Wheaton College in Illinois, Eleanor has been actively involved in church life as a minister’s wife, teacher, musician, writer, and encourager. Additional experiences include gardening, house construction, tree farming, and parenting—all of which have helped bring color and humor to her fiction.

One of her major writing goals has been to make scriptural principles understandable and relevant for today’s readers through the undeniable power of story.

Please tell us three random things we might not know about you.

—I am addicted to Sudoku.

—I was Miss Branchville in the 1954 Sussex County Farm and Horse Show.

—My skeleton in the closet is a distant (as in 14 generations) genealogical connection with Al Gore, through the Schooley family.

So that's your inconvenient truth, is it, Eleanor?

Please tell us a bit more about the plot of Dynamo.

 photo image003_zpsbfa1c615.jpgJeth Cavanaugh is searching for a new life along one of Pennsylvania's mountain ridges when he stumbles upon a stable of show jumpers owned by Rob and Katie Chilton. Throw in a volatile gaited stallion named Dynamo, and Jeth will do anything to work there. He earns his living by training and showing Rob's jumpers, but Dynamo is his primary passion.

Everything changes when God enters his life—in the unconventional form of a hard slap by an old girlfriend—and ignites a new, greater passion within him. But along with fervor comes fear at the undeniable evidence of God's hand on his life. Inexplicable events, both good and bad, make him moan plaintively, "Why does God do this to me? I get the feeling I'm being set up for something."

He is, indeed. Jeth's life is anything but predictable, much like the God he serves. The real Dynamo and his ultimate trainer emerge out of an excruciating mix of disaster and brokenness, which are never beyond the reach of redemption. This story is God in your face: Who is He, really? What does He ask of us?

What is it about Jeth that will make your readers care about him?

Jeth is real and has rough edges, both before and after his conversion. The story picks up on issues of anger, broken marriages, the pain of disaster, spiritual struggles, and teenage angst—and Jeth has to deal with all of them. But he has a heart for God and for people—a true servant.

What is your greatest distraction when you’re trying to write? How do you overcome it?

Too many other things call for my attention—caring for missionaries, devotional time and prayer needs, responding to emails, food prep and other household chores, exercise (2-3 miles/day), church involvement, and, of course, the social networking necessary for publicizing books. Which of these do you recommend I give up on? ☺ My problem exactly.

Yes, we do what we must do, and we hope the rest will fall into place, right?

What is the last novel you read that you would recommend?

The Truth Teller by Angela Hunt. It’s well written; it grabs you right up front and won’t let you go till the end.

What are you working on now?

My writing has gone on hold until after Dynamo comes out, but I do have a novel, An Unpresentable Glory, that is in pretty good shape, except that I have yet to find a reader who really likes it. A lot of work still ahead! ☺

You made me laugh with that comment about your work in progress, Eleanor. Everyone's a critic!

Where else can readers find you online?

My website is www.eleanorgustafson.com. I blog every other week (www.eleanorgustafson.com/blog ) and have gotten good responses. Please check me out and bulk up my readership.

I’m also engaged in a Hartline Agency project of promoting each other’s books on Facebook, the idea being to reach a wide selection of readers, rather than just authors. It’s time consuming, but 40 sets of other people’s Facebook Friends is significant publicity.

I am on Linkedin but have not yet tackled Pinterest or Twitter. I do have an Author Page on Amazon , and my email is egus@me.com.

The book can be purchased in fine book stores and online via the following buttons:



CBD.com
9110066: Dynamo




Finally, what question would you like to ask my readers?

Given a choice, would you opt to read literary or well-written genre-based fiction, and for what reasons?

Thanks, Eleanor, for visiting with us and telling us about your novel. Readers, Eleanor has offered to give a signed copy of her book to the winner of our drawing on Thursday, April 24. To enter, leave a comment below in answer to Eleanor's question, above. "Please enter me" won't get you entered. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com.

Also, I'd love it if you'd connect with me on Facebook. Just click on my name at the right of today's post.

Annoying legal disclaimer: drawings void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents; the odds of winning depend upon the number of participants. See full disclaimer HERE.

Monday, April 7, 2014

April Releases and Free Books!

 photo notdating_sm_zpsb9bc5a3d.jpgThis could be the start of a "they lived happily ever after" love story, if only she hadn't sworn off dating.

Next week I'm going to give away two copies of my first novel, The Guy I'm Not Dating. But today we're giving away books by two authors featured here last week.

The winner of the signed copy of A Beauty So Rare, by Tamera Alexander, is:

mstalgal1966@ . . .

and the winner of the signed copy of Marriage by Arrangement, by Anne Greene, is:

wileygreen1@ . . .

Congratulations! I'll email you today to get your mailing addresses, and we'll get your books to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right (above my list of books) in order to participate in future book give-aways! Subscribers are entered a second time when they comment.

Now to next Monday's giveaway. Every once in awhile I give away one of my own novels, and next week I'm giving away two signed copies of my first published novel, The Guy I'm Not Dating.

Here's the storyline in a nutshell:

 photo notdating_sm_zpsb9bc5a3d.jpgKara Richardson has finally suffered one breakup too many. She's decided to go the no-dating route to romance, although she's not quite sure how that works.

She couldn't have picked a worse time to meet Gabe Paolino. Gorgeous men hardly faze Kara. A personal trainer, she works with hunks every day. But Gabe, the handsome young deli owner in town, proves way too available and way too challenging for Kara's vow of friendship. How will she adhere to her new lifestyle without scaring Gabe away?

Enter matchmaking friends, a strange elderly aunt, three demanding teens, and one hard-to-take vixen with eyes for Gabe. Add an overcrowded road trip and plenty of God's blessings, and Kara may discover that the guy she's not dating is the best boyfriend she's ever had.

And since I usually ask my guests to give us an idea of who they would cast in the movie version of their novels, I'm reposting what I said a few years ago about the hero and heroine of The Guy: 

Now let me show you my movie leads. Today I'll just show you who I pictured when writing Kara Richardson and Gabe Paolino, the heroine and hero from The Guy I'm Not Dating.


This is Shelby Lynne, a country music singer. I haven't a clue whether or not the girl can act, but this particular picture of her was very much how I pictured Kara (although Kara was less serious looking than this).





And this guy? I have no idea who this person is in real life, but he's how I pictured Gabe. Tall, dark, not too pretty, not too rugged. Juuuuuuuuust right. Okay, maybe he looks a little bit pretty here, but picture him in a white T-shirt and jeans. That's Gabe.



I've never been a hardcore proponent of the no-dating approach to relationships, but I did enjoy exploring the idea for this novel in a lighthearted and romantic fashion. The no-dating, courtship concept was popularized in Josh Harris's book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye.

My questions to you are, what is your take on the courtship idea? Do you know anyone who used that relationship method successfully?

Leave your answer in the comments section below to be entered in next week's drawing.

Be sure to check out my interview with Stephanie Grace Whitson, below. Leave an appropriate comment at the bottom of the post to enter the drawing for a signed copy of the book.

Also, I'd love it if you'd connect with me on Facebook. Just click on my name at the right of today's post.

Annoying legal disclaimer: drawings void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents; the odds of winning depend upon the number of participants. See full disclaimer HERE.

As you scroll to the bottom of the post to leave your comment, take a look at some of the exciting new Inspirational fiction being released in April!

Contemporary Romance:

A Plain Man by Mary Ellis -- When a man returns to Amish ways after years apart, rigid district rules, a judgmental father, and his own pride conspire to separate him from the woman he loves. Josie Yoder was just a girl when he left. All grown up now, she gives Caleb hope for the future and reminds him that while his faith may have wavered, God never left his side. But will past mistakes end up destroying their fledgling romance before it really has a chance to begin? (Contemporary Romance from Harvest House Publishers)

A Broken Kind of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert -- After ten years in the fashion industry, twenty-four year old model Ivy Clark has learned a sacred truth-appearance is everything. When it starts to unravel, she'll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother's bridal wear line-an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white. If only her tenuous future didn't rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious new photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Is it possible that God sees her-a woman stained and broken by the world-yet wants her still? (Contemporary Romance from Waterbrook/Multnomah [Random House])

Rescued by the Firefighter by Gail Gaymer Martin -- A firefighter who has saved many lives except his own meets a woman with a surprising secret who could save him if she would allow him to save her first. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Unexpected Wedding by Carla Rossi -- In a wheelchair since a fall in college, Rocky Lionakis plays guitar and shares his testimony every week with the campers at Towering Pines summer church camp. At peace with his chair, he has settled into a boring but successful career in technology...but then stunning camp counselor, Gia Rinaldi, enters his life and turns it upside down. Giavanna Rinaldi, with a trail of bad choices in her wake, has finally grown up and found her niche as a student of Christian child psychology. She returns to Camp Towering Pines where she's worked since high school, but unsettling dreams and an unexplained illness lead her to a harrowing discovery. (Contemporary Romance from White Rose Publishing [Pelican])

Rodeo Song by Shannon Taylor Vannatter -- Jenna Wentworth found the man of her dreams. But when silken-voiced Garrett Steele set out for stardom, he left Jenna-and his cowboy past-far behind. A chance encounter at one of his concerts propels him back into Jenna's life. Once upon a time, Garrett vowed he'd be a success, no matter what. But that path shattered his soul. His reunion with Jenna makes him long for things he once took for granted. Now he must show her that he's found what he was looking for all along...right here in his hometown. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Historical Romance:

For Such a Time by Kate Breslin -- A young, bitter, Jewess-in-hiding must send her own people to Auschwitz in order to survive, or put her trust in God by giving her heart to the man responsible for their doom. (Historical Romance from Bethany House [Baker])

Rainy Day Dreams by Lori Copeland and Virginia Smith -- When the Burgert family moves to Seattle in 1852, Kathryn is convinced her father has destroyed her life. The backwoods settlement offers none of the comforts and culture she loves in San Francisco. She cares nothing for the new sawmill the townsfolk are so excited about. That is, until she meets Jason, a lumberjack with dreams for a bright future. As she comes to know Jason, Kathryn can't help catching his vision. But the future they hope for is anything but secure. There are some who see Seattle as a threat and will stop at nothing to make sure the sawmill fails. A gripping story of love, tenderness, and survival in the rugged Pacific Northwest. (Historical Romance from Harvest House Publishers)

The Preacher's Bride Claim by Laurie Kingery -- For the Thornton brothers, the Oklahoma Land Rush is the perfect opportunity to finally put down some roots. A new start, a new community-what more could preacher Elijah Thornton need. Not a wife-not after losing his fiancée. But something draws him to the pretty nurse whose eyes are clouded by trouble. (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Sincerely Yours by Ann Shorey, Laurie Alice Eakes, Amanda Cabot, and Jane Kirkpatrick -- Four young women find their lives altered after each receives a letter that sets her on a new path toward a changed life--and perhaps lifelong love. From a Hudson River steamboat to a lush drawing room, from a carousel carver's workshop to a remote and controversial hospital, readers will love being swept into the lives of four young women who are making their way in the world and finding love where they least expect it. (Historical Romance from Revell [Baker Publishing Group])

The Pelican Bride by Beth White -- It is 1704 when Genevieve Gaillain and her sister board a French ship headed for the Louisiana colony as mail-order brides. Genevieve knows life won't be easy, but at least here she can establish a home and family without fear of beheading. But when she falls in love with Tristan Lanier, an expatriate cartographer whose courageous stand for fair treatment of native peoples has made him decidedly unpopular in the young colony, Genevieve realizes that even in this land of liberty one is not guaranteed peace. (Historical Romance from Revell [Baker PublishingGroup])

Circle of Spies by Roseanna M. White-- Baltimore, 1865--Marietta Hughes never wanted to be a spy...but espionage is thrust upon her as the War Between the States rolls on. Unbeknownst to her, a Confederate secret society bent on destroying the Union she loves has been meeting in her basement. When she discovers the plots and papers covering her walls, she feels as though she is losing her world. Slade Osborne, an undercover Pinkerton agent, is determined to do whatever is necessary to help end the conflict between the North and the South. When he infiltrates this secret cell, it isn't just their inner workings that baffle him--it's the beautiful woman who seems to be a puppet for the new leader and yet...somehow not an enemy of the Union. Can he trust her? (Historical Romance from Harvest House Publishers)

Contemporary:

Dynamo by Eleanor Gustafson -- Jeth Cavenaugh trains both show jumpers and the 5-gaited stallion Dynamo, but God, in extraordinary ways, is training Jeth-for what? (Contemporary from Whitaker House)

Just 18 Summers by Rene Gutteridge and Michelle Cox -- After the tragic death of Butch Browning's wife, Jenny, four families begin to realize how precious-and fleeting-their time together is. Each is at a different stage in life: Butch is facing single parenthood. The O'Reillys are expecting their first child. The Andersons are approaching an empty nest, and the Buckleys are so focused on providing their children with everything that they've forgotten what they truly need. With just eighteen summers before their children are grown, how do they make the most of that time when life so often gets in the way? (Contemporary from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])

The Women of Valley View: Pam by Sharon Srock -- Pam's divorce broke her heart. The cruelty of her ex-husband broke her spirit. A bottle of sleeping pills almost took her life. Four years later the scars of Alan Archer's emotional abuse are beginning to fade under the love of her new husband. When Alan returns to Garfield, Pam must learn that buried secrets and carefully cultivated indifference do not equal forgiveness. (Contemporary from Harbourlight Books [Pelican])

Medical Thriller:

Critical Condition by Richard L. Mabry M.D. -- It was supposed to be a quiet dinner party with her colleagues. Not the scene of a murder. Dr. Frasier couldn't save the gunshot victim on her front lawn. Now she's fighting for her own life. With a sister suffering from addiction, and her own fear of commitment to her "almost-fiancé" causing guilt, she turns to her pastor-father for help, only to learn he's just been diagnosed with leukemia. Shannon thought it couldn't get any worse. Then the late-night, threatening phone calls begin, the rough voice asking, "What did he say before he died?" With everything around her in a critical state, simply staying alive will require all the resources and focus Shannon has. (Thriller/Suspense from HarperCollins [Thomas Nelson & Zondervan])

Romantic Suspense:

Perilous Waters by Sandra Orchard -- On an Alaskan cruise, an undercover FBI agent, seeking evidence of art crimes, befriends an heiress trying to convince her twin to sell their gallery, except an assassin has different plans. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Happy reading!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Stephanie Grace Whitson and Free Books!

 photo ACaptainforLauraRose_zps82c9b353.jpg Life on a Missouri River steamboat is all Laura Rose White as ever wanted, and unless she finds a pilot willing to take orders from a woman, she’s going to lose the fight to keep her Laura Rose.

Today we're revisiting with novelist Stephanie Grace Whitson, author of A Captain for Laura Rose (FaithWords, March 2014).

 photo StephanieGraceWhitson_zps24be2f80.jpgWith the spring 2014 release of A Captain for Laura Rose, best-selling, award-winning author Stephanie Grace Whitson will have twenty-six novels and two works of non-fiction to her credit.

She received her MA in Historical Studies from Nebraska Wesleyan University in May of 2012 and is a frequent guest speaker/lecturer on a variety of historical and inspirational topics for civic organizations, libraries, quilt guilds, and church groups.

Her husband and blended family, her church, historical research, antique quilts, and Kitty—her motorcycle—all rank high on her list of “favorite things.”

Please tell us three random things we might not know about you.

--I’ve studied quilt and textile history for over twenty years and once considered becoming a certified quilt appraiser.

--I “met” the famous race horse Secretariat and gave him one of his favorite treats—peppermint candy.

--I love to hand quilt and hate to sit at a sewing machine—and recently paid $2.50 for an antique quilting frame at an estate sale.

I imagine working with a quilting frame as being very therapeutic.

Please tell us a bit more about the plot of A Captain for Laura Rose.

 photo ACaptainforLauraRose_zps82c9b353.jpg It is 1867, and no one is inclined to accept the idea of licensing a female as a Missouri River boat pilot—even though Laura’s well-respected father has taught her everything he knew about piloting. When tragedy strikes, Laura must make the two-month journey from St. Louis to Fort Benton, Montana and back in order to save her family’s legacy, her home, and the only life she’s ever known.

The only way for Laura to overcome the nearly insurmountable odds is with the help of her brother’s disreputable friend Finn MacKnight, a skilled pilot with a terrible reputation. Laura loathes having to accept MacKnight as her copilot, especially when she learns she must also provide passage for his two sisters. Straitlaced Fiona has a fear of water, and unpredictable Adele seems much too comfortable with the idea of life in the rough-and-tumble environment of the untamed river and the men who ply it.

What is it about Laura that will make your readers care about her?

Laura is the kind of woman we all admire. She’s caught up in a seemingly impossible situation, and she refuses to give up. She has courage and tenacity—but she also has some lessons to learn about what’s really important in life.

If you were the casting director for the film version of your novel, who would play your lead roles?

 photo Unknown-1_zps14fcbc7b.jpeg I could see Keira Knightly as Laura.




 photo Unknown-2_zps37da726d.jpegFinn would be a bit more difficult to cast. Laura calls him “dark and dangerous-looking.” I just googled “dark and dangerous-looking film stars” and the images made me laugh. No Finn there. I suppose Tom Cruise could pull it off, but he’d have to be more Jack Reacher and less boy-next-door.


 photo Unknown-3_zpsb2cea797.jpegMaybe Javier Bardem—without the evil edge that he’s so good at playing.





What is your greatest distraction when you’re trying to write?

Myself. I have a multitude of interests that beg for attention…not the least of which is six wondermous grandchildren who live right here in my home town and who are growing up way too fast.

Ah, nearby grandchildren. That sounds like such a blessing, but I can see how, in this circumstance, that could be a procrastination curse!  My amazing grandkids are a solid hour away, so visiting them requires deliberate scheduling. 

How do you overcome your distractions?

Not very well, sometimes. Balancing life in 2014 is a perpetual challenge.

Amen to that. 

What is the last novel you read that you would recommend?

I don’t know if it’s the last one (I read two or three novels a week), but I loved Ann Tatlock’s book Sweet Mercy, which my local Christian fiction book club read together. Ann has a gentle touch when it comes to the real issues behind her character’s struggles, and yet she does a beautiful job of making her readers think about those issues.

One of the characters who spoke to me most was a young woman who was very “black and white” and who tended to be judgmental of others who had made less-than-perfect decisions about life. Seeing that young woman mature and realize that life isn’t always “black and white” spoke to me personally.

What are you working on now?

My 2015 book for FaithWords, Daughter of the Regiment. Maggie Malone is an Irish immigrant who, in 1861, really just wants “the Americans” to settle their problems and leave her and her family out of it. But the Malone farm is in a part of Missouri known as Little Dixie.

When Maggie’s two brothers join the Union Army’s Irish Brigade, Maggie and a neighbor named Libbie Blair (whose brother owns a hemp plantation worked by slaves) are both caught up in the neighbor-against-neighbor conflict that characterized Missouri in the Civil War.

Where else can readers find you online?

www.stephaniewhitson.com
Facebook
I also have an author blog and a history blog. Links to both appear on the home page of my web site.


The book can be purchased in fine book stores and online via the following buttons:




CBD.com
529056: A Captain for Laura Rose


Finally, what question would you like to ask my readers?

Have you ever been to St. Louis or traveled along the Missouri River? What was your favorite historical site? Why?

Thanks, Stephanie, for visiting with us and telling us about your novel. Readers, Stephanie has offered to give a signed copy of her book to the winner of our drawing on Monday, April 14. To enter, leave a comment below in answer to Stephanie's question, above. "Please enter me" won't get you entered. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com.

Be sure to check out my interviews with Tamera Alexander and Anne Greene, below. Leave an appropriate comment at the bottom of the post to enter the drawing for a signed copy of the book.

Also, I'd love it if you'd connect with me on Facebook. Just click on my name at the right of today's post.

Annoying legal disclaimer: drawings void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents; the odds of winning depend upon the number of participants. See full disclaimer HERE.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Anne Greene and Free Books!

 photo MarriageByArrangement_4x6_zps6e4593e7.jpgA marriage covenant. A great secret. An impossible choice. Why does a handsome Duke stoop to marry a mere Lady? Are the whispered stories about him true? With his shadowy past, what secret does he hide? Each change of clothes transforms him into a different man. Must the Lady arrange the Duke’s death to protect her unborn child?

Before we visit today's author, I want to announce that the winner of the signed copy of Londonderry Dreaming, by Christine Linsday, is:

lovetoread205@ . . .

and the winner of the signed copy of Rescued by the Firefighter, by Gail Gaymer Martin, is:

shona.catto@ . . .

Congratulations! I'll email you today to get your mailing addresses, and we'll get your books to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right (above my list of books) in order to participate in future book give-aways! Subscribers are entered a second time when they comment.

And now let's chat with novelist Anne Greene, author of Marriage By Arrangement (White Rose Publishing/Pelican Book Group, December 2013).

 photo EveningAnne4_BrushStroke4_5_zpsf8660949.jpgAnne Greene delights in writing about wounded heroes and gutsy heroines. Her second novel, a Scottish historical, Masquerade Marriage, won the New England Reader Choice award, the Laurel Wreath Award, and the Heart of Excellence Award. The sequel, Marriage By Arrangement released December, 2013. Her other book, A Texas Christmas Mystery also won awards.

She makes her home in McKinney, Texas. Tim LaHaye led her to the Lord when she was twenty-one, and Chuck Swindoll is her Pastor.

Anne’s highest hope is that her stories transport the reader to an awesome new world and touch hearts to seek a deeper spiritual relationship with the Lord Jesus.

Please tell us three random things we might not know about you.

--I’m a world traveler. I have visited thirty different foreign countries, and set some of my other books in several.

--I’m a military wife and know a lot about weapons, training, equipment, and deployment.

--I’m adventurous, and you’ll find adventure and suspense in all my historical and contemporary love stories.

How terrific that your life has provided so much fodder for your novels, Anne!

Please tell us a bit more about the plot of Marriage by Arrangement.

 photo MarriageByArrangement_4x6_zps6e4593e7.jpgMy reviewers said: Marriage by Arrangement is an emotional page turner. The message of faith is woven seamlessly throughout and shows faith can bring people through the toughest trials. I had a hard time putting the book down. There are surprising twists. I didn’t want the story to end. The ending was great, but I didn’t want to leave the characters. Delightful to learn how people in the past lived in different parts of the world. The story was so well-written, I finished it in one day.

Why will readers care about your lead character?

The Fifth Duke of Avondale is a tormented man. Readers who know men returned from combat will relate. The Duke fights to overcome his demons, and the love of a good woman brings him healing. Any person who suffered a traumatic event will find help within these pages. Lady Cailin brings to life that bad things do happen to good people, and she struggles to understand why.

If you were the casting director for the film version of your novel, who would play your lead roles?

 photo images_zps66e6b9db.jpegChris Pine is a new star I’m enjoying, and I think he would make an excellent Duke of Avondale.

I’d like to see an unknown blond beauty with an English accent take the role of Cailin and become an overnight star.

What fictional character would you like to meet or know in real life?

I’d love to meet Brody McCauley, the hero of Masquerade Marriage. I fell in love with him. And, if a woman can love two men, and I think women are capable of loving many men, the Duke of Avondale is a close second.

Brody is an open book and the Duke is a complex enigma. I’ve lived with these two men for months, and never get enough of being with them. I’d be thrilled to meet them in person.

What is the last novel you read that you would recommend?

Heiress by Susan May Warren. I love the way she writes, and her books are full of surprises.

What are you working on now?

I’m writing a 1920s book about love in the jazz-happy, optimistic, roaring twenties. The working title is Cupid Goes Barnstorming.

Orphan Gloria Richards lost her partner in a bi-plane crash during a barnstorming show. She’s a wing-walker and had the day off when the crash occurred. She sweet-talks ace pilot of the Great War, Rand Maitland, into taking her on as his wing-walker. Though Rand knows Gloria is nicknamed Jinx because every pilot she walked wings for has crashed and died, he’s putty in her hands.

Yet, Rand wants no romance in his life because marrying tamed his three older brothers into working for Dad’s company. Rand refuses a desk job. He plans to set the world record, crossing the Atlantic before either Charlie Lindbergh or Wiley Post.

As an orphan, Gloria’s had too many difficult encounters with men who exploited her. She flees love. With her life in Rand’s hands will Gloria learn to trust him? Can Rand ever put a woman first before his ambition? When Gloria’s offered a film role in the new talking movies, will she leave one adventure for another? Will Rand marry the debutante his dad chose for him, or will he discover, too late, that Gloria already owns his heart?

Where else can readers find you online?

View my travel pictures and art work at www.AnneGreeneAuthor.com.
Visit www.anneswritingupdates.blogspot.com for information on writing an award-winning novel.
Talk with me on twitter at @TheAnneGreene.
Facebook

The book can be purchased in fine book stores and online via the following buttons:





Finally, what question would you like to ask my readers?

Do you read as much as you always have, or have TV, video games, netflicks, smart phones, and social media cut into your reading time?

Thanks, Anne, for visiting with us and telling us about your novel. Readers, Anne has offered to give a signed copy of her book to the winner of our drawing on Monday, April 7. To enter, leave a comment below in answer to Anne's question, above. "Please enter me" won't get you entered. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com.

Be sure to check out my interview with Tamera Alexander, below. Leave an appropriate comment at the bottom of the post to enter the drawing for a signed copy of the book.

Also, I'd love it if you'd connect with me on Facebook. Just click on my name at the right of today's post.

Annoying legal disclaimer: drawings void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents; the odds of winning depend upon the number of participants. See full disclaimer HERE.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Tamera Alexander and Free Books!

 photo Unknown-4_zps05a9a0d5.jpegFrom the USA Today bestselling author of To Whisper Her Name and A Lasting Impression comes a moving historical novel about a bold young woman drawn to a group of people forgotten by Nashville society––and to the one man with whom she has no business falling in love.

Today we're revisiting with novelist Tamera Alexander, author of A Beauty So Rare (Bethany House, March 2014).

 photo 1TameraAlexander_Purple-2_zps4fb8ed40.jpegTamera Alexander is a USA Today bestselling novelist whose works have been awarded and nominated for numerous industry-leading honors, including the Christy Award, the RITA Award, the Carol Award, and Library Journal's top distinction, among others.

After seventeen years in Colorado, Tamera and her husband have returned to their native South and live in Nashville, Tennessee, where they enjoy spending time with their two grown children, and a twelve pound Silky Terrier named Jack.

Please tell us three random things we might not know about you.

— I may look relatively "sweet" (or so people tell me) but I’m really quite sarcastic. I have to watch that at times. It’s gotten me in deep trouble more than once.

— I love cemeteries.

— Since a very young age, I’ve held a fascination with death and the world to come.

I have to say I get a kick out of fellow sarcastic types. But I know what you mean. If people don't "get" it, one suddenly sounds mean or bitter. Embarrassing! 

Please tell us a bit more about the plot of A Beauty So Rare.

 photo Unknown-4_zps05a9a0d5.jpegEleanor Braddock—plain, practical, no stunning Southern beauty—knows she will never marry. But with a dying soldier’s last whisper, she believes her life can still have meaning and determines to find his widow.

Impoverished and struggling to care for her ailing father, Eleanor arrives at Belmont Mansion, home of her aunt, Adelicia Acklen, the richest woman in America—and possibly the most demanding, as well. Adelicia insists on finding her niece a husband, but a simple act of kindness leads Eleanor down a far different path—building a home for destitute widows and fatherless children from the Civil War. While Eleanor knows her own heart, she also knows her aunt will never approve of this endeavor.

Archduke Marcus Gottfried has come to Nashville from Austria in search of a life he determines, instead of one determined for him. Hiding his royal heritage, Marcus longs to combine his passion for nature with his expertise in architecture, but his plans to incorporate natural beauty into the design of the widows’ and children’s home run contrary to Eleanor’s wishes. As work on the home draws them closer together, Marcus and Eleanor find common ground—and a love neither of them expects.

But Marcus is not the man Adelicia has chosen for Eleanor, and even if he were, someone who knows his secrets is about to reveal them all.

What a great synopsis. 

Why will readers care about Eleanor?

Eleanor Braddock is an "every woman." The most relatable heroine I’ve ever written, I think. As the back cover says, she’s plain, practical, no stunning Southern beauty, and yet she does have a beauty about her. It’s simply not one that’s readily visible. You have to see her with your heart. I love that about her. I also love her compassionate heart––that’s tenacious in pursuing her dream but which can be downright vicious when confronted with injustice.

If you were the casting director for the film version of your novel, who would play your lead roles?

 photo elizabeth1998cateblanchettdiscoverssheistobecomequeen_zps13489816.jpgThe pictures I submitted to my publisher to provide inspiration for the cover was Cate Blanchett for the heroine, sans makeup, a picture from one of her more "raw" films.




 photo Unknown-1_zps75c2501b.jpegAnd for the hero, Richard Armitage. Enough said!




What fictional character would you like to meet or know in real life?

Hadassah from Francine Rivers’ Mark of the Lion series. She’s the most unforgettable fictional character I’ve ever met. I mean…read.

What is the last novel you read that you would recommend?

The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult. I read it while on a trip to Germany last fall, visiting concentration camps, Hitler’s headquarters, walking that horrid, gut-wrenching road, and the book came alive within me. A little too much at times. I’ve read several of Picoult’s novels and this by far is my personal favorite.

What are you working on now?

The second of three novels in the Belle Meade Plantation series which is set against the real history of the Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville, TN. The first book in the series, To Whisper Her Name, explores the struggles of real people of the post-war South and the journeys of a man and a woman scarred by betrayal. I adore Southern history.

Where else can readers find you online?

On my website: www.TameraAlexander.com
Facebook
Twitter
Blog: www.TameraAlexander.blogspot.com

And here's a link to an exciting giveaway on the book:

The book can be purchased in fine book stores and online via the following buttons:




CBD.com
206230: A Beauty So Rare, Belmont Mansion Series #2


Finally, what question would you like to ask my readers?

What’s the oldest historical home you’ve visited (in the U.S. or abroad), and how did its history and walking its halls affect you?

Thanks, Tamera, for visiting with us and telling us about your novel. Readers, Tamera has offered to give a signed copy of her book to the winner of our drawing on Monday, April 7. To enter, leave a comment below in answer to Tamera's question, above. "Please enter me" won't get you entered. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com.

Be sure to check out my interviews with Christine Lindsay and Gail Gaymer Martin, below. Leave an appropriate comment at the bottom of the post to enter the drawing for a signed copy of the book.

Also, I'd love it if you'd connect with me on Facebook. Just click on my name at the right of today's post.

Annoying legal disclaimer: drawings void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents; the odds of winning depend upon the number of participants. See full disclaimer HERE.
 

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