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!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Ann Shorey and Free Books!

When tragedy strikes, how will Molly McGarvie keep her young family together?

Before we meet today's featured novelist, I want to announce that the winner of Brenda Lott/Maggie Brendan's novel, No Place For a Lady, is:

cjarvis@ . . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you today for your snail mail address, and we'll get your book to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Ann Shorey, author of The Edge of Light (Revell, January 2009).

PhotobucketAnn Shorey has been writing for over fifteen years. She's been published in the Adams Media Cup of Comfort series, and had one of her stories included in Chicken Soup for the Grandma's Soul. Ann has also written articles for various local and regional publications. After completing a narrative family history in 1998, she realized she had uncovered a treasure trove of inspiration, and turned to fiction as a way to put that inspiration to good use.

Ann teaches classes on historical research, story arc, and other fiction fundamentals at regional conferences. She works in Sutherlin, Oregon, where she lives with her husband, Richard. The Edge of Light is her first novel.

Tell us a bit more about The Edge of Light, Ann.

PhotobucketIt's the summer of 1838 in St. Lawrenceville, Missouri, and Molly McGarvie's life is about to change forever. When her beloved Samuel succumbs to cholera, Molly is heartbroken but resolves to take care of herself and her children.

When Samuel's unscrupulous brother takes over the family business and leaves Molly to fend for herself, she knows she must head out on her own. It's a dangerous journey, and along the way she faces the loss of another family member. Somehow she must find a way to earn a living and restore her family. She's determined to make it--and she doesn't want a man's help to do it.

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

My protagonist, Molly McGarvie, most interested me. The character Molly was inspired by the life of one of my great-great aunts. As I researched, I felt closer to my female ancestors who lived in those times. Betsy, the slave woman, also fascinated me. The research I did on slavery made her dilemma all too real to me. I sympathized with her as I wrote her scenes.

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

Comments I have received so far center on admiration for Molly's determination and devotion to her children.

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

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I'd like Kate Winslet to play Molly.

PhotobucketAnd I'd cast Hugh Jackman for Dr. Karl Spengler.

Ann, what facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

I love doing dialogue. I've carried on so many "I should've said" conversations in my head over the years that it's fun to actually get to say what I want to say--or have my characters say it, I should add.

I'm there with you, Ann. If only we had time to craft our own dialogue the way we can our characters', eh? What do you struggle with in your writing?

Transitions. Moving characters from one day to another, one place to another, just getting them into the next scene, can be a challenge.

In three sentences or less, tell us something about point of view with regard to your latest novel.

I chose to write The Edge of Light from three points of view: Molly McGarvie, the protagonist; Betsy James, a slave woman who has been Molly's friend since childhood; and Dr. Karl Spengler, the physician she should have called when her husband fell ill.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

The ocean. It's not inanimate in that it's constantly moving, but it's not a sentient being, either. I live near the Pacific coast, so love to watch the waves. What we have in common is changeability. Sometimes calm, sometimes stormy, always interesting.

Other than your family and your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

This is a hard question. Many things inspire me. Seeing answers to prayer is always an awesome event. On a smaller scale, I'm excited by all the possibilities life has to offer. Twenty years ago, I could never have seen myself where I am now. Who knows what the next twenty years, or even this next year, will have to offer?

What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

Several months ago I read Three Cups of Tea. Greg Mortenson's journey affected my thinking in many ways. It showed me how much one person can accomplish with enough determination, and helped me to see the people of Pakistan's remote regions as people, not merely figures in the nightly news. I've recommended the book often, and wrote about it in the blog on my website.

What are you working on now?

I'm writing Book 3 in the At Home in Beldon Grove series for Revell. Currently, I'm in the discovery phase of my characters and their lives.

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book.

Please visit my website at www.annshorey.com. Readers can purchase The Edge of Light directly through the website by clicking on the "Novels" tab, then clicking the "Buy this book" link.

The Edge of Light is also available directly through www.amazon.com and www.christianbook.com

Thank you, Ann, for telling us about yourself and The Edge of Light. Readers, Ann has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Thursday, February 5. To enter, leave a comment for Ann, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Monday, when we'll draw the winner of Pamela Tracy's novel, Daddy for Keeps. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Pamela Tracy and Free Books!

Not flesh of my flesh
Nor bone of my bone,
But still miraculously my own.
Never forget for a single minute,
You didn't grow under my heart,
But in it.


Before we meet today's featured poet/novelist, I'm pleased to announce that the winner of Cecelia Dowdy's novel, Milk Money, is:

shryackmom@. . .

In addition, the winner of the drawing for Amy Deardon's A Lever Long Enough (Donna Moore) already owned the book and has graciously relinquished her claim on a second copy. So I've drawn again from the interview's commenters (and subscribers). The new winner of Amy's book is:

b.werts@ . . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you both today for your snail mail addresses, and we'll get your books to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Pamela Tracy, author of Daddy for Keeps (Steeple Hill Love Inspired Romance, January 2009).

PhotobucketPamela Tracy is a writer and teacher in Scottsdale, Arizona, where she lives with her husband and son. She was raised in Omaha, Nebraska, and started writing fiction while earning a BA in Journalism at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas.

Her first novel, It Only Takes a Spark, was published in 1999. Since then she's published fifteen more writings in suspense, romantic comedy, and Christian inspiration romance. Three more novels, two suspense and one straight romance, are slated for 2009 and 2010. Her 2007 release, Pursuit of Justice, was a RITA finalist and took second in the ACFW's Book of the Year contest for published authors.

Besides writing, teaching, and taking care of her family, Pam is often asked to speak at various writers' organizations in the Phoenix area. She belongs to Romance Writers of America and the American Christian Fiction Writers. She is president of the local ACFW chapter, Christian Writers of the West. In February of 2005, her newlywed status changed to that of newlymom.

Pam, tell us a bit more about the plot of Daddy for Keeps.

Photobucket
The moment Lucas "Lucky" Welch sees the blackhaired, green-eyed boy at the rodeo, he knows. The child is his late brother's son. But why was little Robby kept a secret? Lucky demands answers from Robby's adoptive mom, Natalie Crosby. But the pretty, protective woman isn't forthcoming. And once Lucky learns the truth behind Robby's birth, he understands. Especially when some family matters get more than complicated. As a bull rider, Lucky knows he just has to hang on tight and keep showing Natalie that his wish is true-blue: to be a daddy--and husband--for keeps.

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

I'm going to say Natalie Crosby, the heroine. She's someone who had goals and passion, but when it came time to cowboy up, she did it. Her goals and passions changed, all because of a little boy, and made her a better person. She was a better person even when her world was challenged and changed.

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

I'm thinking because it's a book of choices. We all make them. And it's so much more enjoyable if the bumper-car world of right choices/wrong choices ends in happily-ever-after.

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

Photobucket
A young Tim McGraw for Lucky.

Photobucket

And a young Laura Linney for Natalie.



What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

Wow, you mean something is supposed to be easy? LOL. Truly, the part that comes easiest for me is the hook at the beginning and the black moment, then redemption, at the end. I always know the beginning and end of my books before I write them.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

Do I really have to limit this to one? Yikes. See above answer. If I only know the beginning and end . . . well, what about the middle. Yup, I'm a victim of the sagging middle. I never know what to do with the middle. Which is why I hate writing a synopsis.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

This sounds like an assignment I'd give my composition students.

Ah, so I'm helping you gain empathy.

Hmmm. I am a mask. Not a typical mask, but a mask that changes its look depending on what it's doing. Think of me as a chameleon mask. I'm a successful mother (mask). I'm a schoolteacher (mask). I'm a writer (mask). I'm involved in my church (mask). I'm a friend (mask). The nice thing about the mask is when it is on, people think I'm poised and confident. Underneath, there's often fear, exhaustion, smiles, and hope.

Wow, thanks for such a transparent answer, Pam! Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

Oh, this one is easy. I have a three-year-old son. He's going to be a writer, too. He has quite an imagination. I picked him up from preschool today and he informed me that the police were coming over but it was okay because he had lots of candy in his pocket to share with them. Hmmm.

Yeah, I'd like to see someone's antagonist try that when he finally gets caught. What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

The latest one would have been Water for Elephants. It affected me because it took me to a world I know nothing about but am fascinated by. It affected me because I wonder will I ever have the skill to write such a unique and fascinating book. I was drawn into her world.

I completely agree, Pamela. This was an excellent story to read (and I'm not even into circus life).

Two other books that impressed me were Laurie Graham's The Happy Homemakers of America. It's an older book, but it's going on my keeper shelf. It's about WWII military wives. Then, there was The Other Woman by Jane Green. I've been reading Jane Green for a long time. Most of her books just missed but were good enough to keep me buying her. This one secured her as a top-ten favorite author. It's been fun watching her grow.

What are you working on now?

I'm working on a Love Inspired Suspense called Fugitive Hearts. It's about an old church, an old mystery, and new love.

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

www.PamelaKayeTracy.com
ladiesofsuspense.blogspot.com
craftieladiesofromance.blogspot.com

And here's the link for my book: Amazon.com

Pamela, thanks for visiting us today and telling us about Daddy for Keeps! Readers, Pamela has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Monday, February 2. To enter, leave a comment for Pam, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Thursday, when we'll draw the winner of Maggie Brendan's novel, No Place for a Lady. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Brenda Lott (Maggie Brendan) and Free Books!

Despite being raised as a proper Southern belle, Crystal Clark is determined to hold her own in wild 1892 Colorado's Yampa Valley--even if a certain handsome foreman doubts her abilities.

Before we meet today's featured novelist, I want to announce that the winner of Amy Deardon's novel, A Lever Long Enough, is:

runninmama@. . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you today for your snail mail address, and we'll get your book to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Brenda Lott, writing as Maggie Brendan, author of No Place For a Lady (Revell, January 2009).

PhotobucketMaggie Brendan is a member of American Christian Writers and the American Christian Writers Association, and is a contributor to www.BustlesAndSpurs.com,, a website for inspirational romance set in the old West. No Place for a Lady is her first novel.

Tell us a bit more about the plot of No Place for a Lady, Brenda.

PhotobucketLonging for a new start, Crystal Clark arrives amid the splendor of the high country in June 1892. After the death of her father, Crystal is relieved to be leaving the troubles of her Georgia life behind to visit her aunt's cattle ranch. Despite being raised a proper Southern belle, Crystal is determined to hold her own in this wild land--even if a certain handsome foreman named Luke doubts her abilities.

Just when she thinks she's getting a handle on the constant male attention from the cowhands and the catty barbs from some of the local young women, tragedy strikes. And saving the ranch from a greedy neighboring landowner means Crystal must take charge of a cattle drive, ready or not. Can she rise to the challenge? Or will she head back to Georgia, defeated?

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

That would definitely be Crystal! She is a strong southern lady with charming manners and a belief in God. Though a Christian, she has her flaws like most of us. She uses her wit to cover for any weakness that she has but must rely on her faith to see her through.

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

I think the readers will relate to Crystal's emotional phases in love, adventure and tragedies and how she handles them, along with a bit of humor to survive.

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

Mmm. I'm not good at remembering actor's names. Crystal, the heroine would be someone with a southern drawl, about 5'2", with dark hair and green eyes. Luke, the hero, would be quite tall, with rugged good looks and a mustache. Dark hair and blue-grey eyes.

Hmm, maybe if we employed some color contacts . . . maybe Evangeline Lilly for Crystal? She looks a bit like your cover girl. Photobucket

And maybe Gerard Butler for Luke? Granted, he'd have to hide his accent, but I think he's worth the risk, don't you? Photobucket

What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

I love to describe the scenery, from smells to visuals. I love the outdoors and mountains, so it comes easily to me. I can find beauty in just about everything.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

Allowing myself the freedom to write everyday. I almost feel guilty spending so much time with my face in front of the monitor. I have a lot of interest and other things tend to pull me away, so I have to make a committed segment of time to write. I like to have a neat and fairly ordered house, too.

Isn't it funny how that joy you feel when you're writing can actually trigger guilt if you don't pay attention to why you're doing it? I catch myself at that, too. It truly is a blessing when God lets you do something you enjoy so much. Okay, Brenda, now choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

I'd have to say an oak tree! Strong and determined.

Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

Seeing God's beautiful magnificent world around me down to the smallest blade of grass inspires and thrills me. I love the sky with its constant, changing clouds and the sun, moon, and stars. I feel like so many people take this incredible world that we have around us for granted. It simply amazes me!

What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

Jim Robinson's Prodigal Song, A Memoir. His personal story is heartbreaking of Jim's total surrender to God. It made me have a clearer and sharper understanding of God's mercy and grace. I did a review of the book on my blog about six months ago in case anyone is interested. It was a very well-written memoir, and I highly recommend it.

What are you working on now?

I just recently completed book 2 in Heart of the West, The Jewel of His Heart, and I'm working on my 3rd novel for Heart of the West, Kickin' Up the Dust! Of course that title could change, but I hope not.

Where else can readers find you or your writing online, Brenda? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

southernbellewriter.blogspot.com
www.bustlesAndspurs.com
My book can be purchased at Amazon.com and wherever books are sold.
And here's the link to Jim Robinson's site. www.jamesrobinson.com

Thank you, Brenda, for telling us about yourself and your books. Readers, Brenda has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Thursday, January 29. To enter, leave a comment for Brenda, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Monday, when we'll draw the winner of Cecilia Dowdy's novel, Milk Money. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Cecilia Dowdy and Free Books!

When Emily's bookkeeper dad dies, she hires Frank, a CPA, to do her farm accounting. But can Emily really love Frank, an unsaved alcoholic?

Before we meet today's featured novelist, I'm pleased to announce that the winner of Kasandra Elaine's novel, First I'm Nobody, is:

smile_y9@. . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you today for your snail mail address, and we'll get your book to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Cecilia Dowdy, author of Milk Money (Barbour Publishing: Heartsong Presents, January 2009).

PhotobucketCecilia Dowdy is a world traveler who has been an avid reader for as long as she can remember. When she first read Christian fiction, she felt called to write for the genre. She is involved in several writers groups, including American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Romance Writers of America (RWA). She is also a former board member of Faith Hope and Love (the inspirational chapter of RWA) and Washington Romance Writers (a local chapter of RWA).

Milk Money is Cecilia's fourth published novel, and is the second novel in Barbour's contemporary Maryland Series. Her fifth novel, Bittersweet Memories, will be released in June 2009.

Cecilia loves to read, write, and bake desserts in her spare time. She also enjoys promoting novels by other Christian authors and she features interviews and Christian book reviews frequently on her blog. She also loves spending time with her husband and reading to her young son. Currently she resides with her family in Maryland.

Cecilia, please tell us a bit more about the plot of Milk Money.

PhotobucketRunning a dairy farm alone is a big job. When her dad dies, Emily works hard to save the family farm. Her world turns upside down the day Franklin Reese, CPA, pulls in her driveway, announcing he's there to do an audit. Frank is appalled at the lack of interest Emily has in her farm's finances, but he's determined to help her learn. The further he looks into Mr. Cooper's dealings, the more uncomfortable he becomes. As he uncovers the truth about Mr. Cooper's finances, he struggles with his own issues. Can Emily love Frank, an unsaved alcoholic?

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

Frank interested me the most. I loved delving into the issue of finding Christ while struggling with an addiction to alcohol.

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

Readers will enjoy my novel because it shows that no matter what demons haunt us, as long as we rely on Christ, everything will work out.

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

Note: I'm basing my answer on physical appearance, not acting ability!

Taye Diggs would be Franklin (Frank) Reese. Photobucket

Photobucket Beyonce would be Emily Cooper.

What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

Dialogue. I find that writing what people say, the way that they actually speak, comes pretty naturally for me. I've had readers and critique partners tell me this about my writing.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

Repetition. I tend to use the same words over and over and I have to do serious revision with my descriptions before turning in my final manuscript.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

That's easy. A book. I've had my nose in a book since I was a kid. I've always loved to read. When I was 28, I decided I wanted to be a commercially-published author. So, that dream caused me to read even more books. I write books, I read books, and I'm addicted to books. Currently, I'm a member of two bookclubs so I receive shipments of books each month. Also, it's rare for me to visit a bookstore without buying at least one book! I have so many books in my house that I'll never read them all. That's why I do frequent book giveaways on my blog.

Oh, goodness, a woman after my own, book-crazy heart. Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

Spending time with my husband and son! Both of them add great joy to my life! I also love to bake delicious cakes and cookies! Yum!

What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

The last book I read that really impacted me was a secular Pulitzer-Prize-winning literary novel called Middlesex. The characters were so well-created that I remember them today, even though I read the book about four years ago. Also, the subject matter was pretty deep, so it's not a book for everyone! But, like most secular novels I read, I kept wanting to turn it into an inspirational by twisting the storyline while I read it!

Yes, I definitely remember Middlesex. Not for the faint of heart, but it sure does make you empathize with the truly unorthodox lead character. What are you working on now, Cecelia?

I'm working on a novel about a blind man who works as a computer programmer, who falls in love with single mother who runs her own restaurant. I have two agents who want to see the full manuscript, so I hope I can find a home for it!

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

My website: www.ceceliadowdy.com
My Christian Fiction Blog: www.ceceliadowdy.blogspot.com
Here is the link to order Milk Money: www.heartsongpresents.com

Cecelia, thanks for spending time with us today and telling us about Milk Money! Readers, Cecelia has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Monday, January 26. To enter, leave a comment for Cecelia, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Thursday, when we'll draw the winner of Amy Deardon's novel, A Lever Long Enough. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Amy Deardon and Free Books

A small military team travels back in time to film the theft of Jesus' body from the tomb.

Before we meet today's featured novelist, I want to announce that the winner of Christy Barritt's novel, Suspicious Minds, is:

jssmcg@. . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you today for your snail mail address, and we'll get your book to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Amy Deardon, author of A Lever Long Enough (Taegais Publishing, LLC--a new independent, January 12, 2009).

Tell us about yourself, Amy!

PhotobucketI'm married and fortunate enough to be able to stay at home with our two children, now 15 and 12. In my life B.C. (before children) I did bench science research and taught anatomy and physiology at an undergraduate level.

I undertook a personal quest to investigate the claims of Jesus' resurrection with the goal of destroying them. To do this I studied biblical and extra-biblical accounts of Jesus and numerous commentaries by believers and skeptics alike, listed the facts agreed upon, and began to explore scenarios that could explain what was known. To my surprise and considerable dismay, the evidence kept pointing away from naturalistic explanations and eventually formed a virtually certain case for the resurrection of Jesus. Finally I admitted defeat and became a Christian.

What a great, McDowell-esque experience, Amy! Tell us a bit more about the plot of A Lever Long Enough.

PhotobucketIn the near future, the Israeli military has developed a prototypic time machine. When believers in Yeshua (Jesus) create a politically explosive situation that threatens the balance of peace between Israel and nearby countries, the Israelis must send a team of four elite soldiers back to film the theft of Jesus' body from the tomb and thus disprove Christianity.

The team, consisting of a Special Forces soldier as leader (Benjamin), an ex-American astronaut as engineering specialist (Sara), an archaeologist, and a linguist, has exactly seventy-two hours to collect the video evidence. Drawn into a web of first century deception and death, the only way to escape is for the team to change the past.

In the present, a traitor, Gideon, attempts to sabotage the mission and seize control of the military complex. Benjamin is the only one who can reveal him, but he is trapped two thousand years away. Even with a time machine, time is running out . . .

Intriguing premise. Sounds like you have a number of characters who will be surprised by the Truth. Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

I love all of my characters, but if I had to choose a favorite, I'd pick Sara. She is very much like me--focused, quiet, but beneath her calm exterior a seething mass of turmoil. Her faith journey also parallels my own--she didn't want to become a believer, but was pulled in by the strength of the evidence. She was pursued by what C.S. Lewis termed the "Hounds of Heaven." An uncomfortable process, I might add!

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

I hope they enjoy it! It's the kind of novel full of action, a love story, and exotic background and ideas that is my favorite thing to read. While the emphasis is on the story, Lever fairly presents the arguments for and against the resurrection, and demonstrates (without the use of any fictional miracles) that the case for the resurrection is remarkable. Believers will also enjoy Lever, but I actually wrote this book to the skeptic I used to be. I want it to be the kind of book that someone races through to finish, closes it, and then says, "wait a minute . . ."

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

Gee, what an interesting question! I have to confess I don't know as many actors as maybe I should. My kids told me to ask to have the cover image of Benjamin modeled after the character John Sheppard (Joe Flanigan) of Stargate Atlantis. Yeah, I could see him as Benjamin. Photobucket

Sara? Not really sure . . .

What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

I love getting into my characters' heads to understand their secrets and what they desire and fear. I give them hard choices based on these things to see what they'll do, how strong and resourceful they are.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

I don't know which is worse: family distractions, or the intimidation of watching a blinking cursor. I have to wake up before everyone else, and give myself a daily word quota.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

Trish, this is a tough question! I was originally going to say I'm a snowglobe that gets shaken but things eventually settle. But maybe I'll say I'm an artist's pencil. I'm not directing the work, but I'm participating and have a front-row seat to the action. God, of course, is the artist.

Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

I greatly enjoy my family. It's so fun to help coach and guide our kids, and watch them becoming such unique and interesting people. They won't be home for too much longer, so I'm trying to enjoy every minute.

Boy, do I hear that. I'll have an empty nest when my son goes to college. Not looking forward to that. Amy, what's the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

For long-term impact, I'd have to say C.S. Lewis, since I reread one or more of his books at least every year. He is such a profound and unusual thinker, his nonfiction is so insightful, and his fictional allegories are stunning. He always stretches my mind.

One of my favorite novels is Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game, about Ender's struggle and acceptance of isolation as part of deciding to end conflict, and the bittersweet nature of victory. This book is haunting.

What are you working on now?

This past year has been busy getting Lever ready for publication, but in the new year I'm looking forward to returning to writing as my main focus. I have two half-finished projects that I'm eager to complete in 2009--an ambitious yet hopefully do-able goal, if I'm very organized.

The first project is my prequel, entitled Nest Among the Stars from Obadiah 1:4, that follows Sara's space station disaster. This one is really shock and awe, with a deep theme of forgiveness.

The second project is nonfiction, entitled The Story Template, that is a practical guide for a writer to develop a resonant, complete, compelling story from vague ideas. It's based on an algorithm I've developed during my story studies, and it really works with students I've coached. It's not a formula, more like a description of proportions and guidelines that work with any genre, since I'm a great believer in the uniqueness of each artist's vision. You can see a sample tutorial I've put on my website under "resources."

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

Readers can contact me through my website at www.amydeardon.com. I also have a blog at http://amydeardon.blogspot.com. A Lever Long Enough is available at Amazon.com. Personally autographed copies of my book are available from the publisher's website at www.taegais.com

Trish, thank you so much for the opportunity to share a little on your blog.

And thank you, Amy, for telling us about yourself and your books. Readers, Amy has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Thursday, January 22. To enter, leave a comment for Amy, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Monday, when we'll draw the winner of Kassy Paris and Elaine Bonner's First I'm Nobody. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Kassy Paris and Free Books!

Take one man, his memory missing. Add one female with Good Samaritan traits. Mix well, stand back and wait for the explosion.

Before we meet today's featured novelist, I want to announce that the winner of Linore Ruse Burkard's novel, Before the Season Ends, is:

jchoppes@. . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you today for your snail mail address, and we'll get your book to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Kassy Paris, co-author of First I'm Nobody (The Wild Rose Press, 2008).

Welcome, Kassy! Tell us a little about yourself and your co-author.

I am Kasandra "Kassy" Paris. I write with a partner, Elaine Powell. Together we are Kasandra Elaine. Elaine and I met as sophomores in high school. We became best friends our senior year. Both of us were raised in East Texas. Elaine is now living in North Texas. I still live in East Texas. Elaine married and had two daughters. She is now the proud grandmother of three--one granddaughter and two grandsons. Her oldest daughter now resides in Heaven. Her youngest daughter lives about fifteen miles away with her three children and husband. Elaine is a registered nurse. She writes solo as Elaine Bonner and has published three books--Thanks to a Lonely Heart, The Heart Knows (both by Heartsong Presents), and Sonora by The Wild Rose Press.

I am a retired elementary teacher, the veritable old maid school teacher. I'm the oldest of four sisters. Since retiring, I've become certified as a tax professional and do substitute teaching.

Tell us a bit more about the plot of First I'm Nobody.

PhotobucketHe came into Skylar's life, a stranger with no memory of his past. A troublesome past invades his present. Unfolding evidence indicates Duke Green is a criminal on the run. Does Skylar McCrea trust her instincts or abide by the apparent facts? His past is a mystery, but in the present he is an honorable man. If he were a thief, surely, he would show some characteristics of a man with a criminal mind.

Skylar is a good judge of character and of horseflesh. She knows Skylark's Son will be another champion for the Lazy M Ranch, and she strongly suspects that Duke Green might be a champion himself.

Their search for Duke's past takes them across the country. What will be at the end--a life of freedom with Skylar or separation while Duke pays for his crime? What does God have in mind for the two?

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

Actually Elaine and I were completely captivated by a secondary character, Redigo. He kept trying to "take over" the novel. We had to work hard to make him stay in the background. We did but just barely. We "promised" him a novel of his own. We kept our word. Redigo's Choice will be in print March 6, 2009.

Why will readers enjoy First I'm Nobody?

We combined likeable characters with an intriguing plotline and a developing romance.

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

PhotobucketTom Selleck would be Duke Green.

And Jacqulyn Smith would be Skylar McCrea (Both in their younger years of course, though they still look good.)
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What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

Once we have the story idea, putting the story down seems to just flow out.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

Keeping the POV count down to three or four is a major problem. We write suspense, so we have to have the villain's POV in addition to the hero and heroine. But we seem to create casts of characters, and they all beg for their own POV to come through.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

I think I would be a boulder made of lapis lazuli. The blue color of lapis reminds me of my eye color. My eyes have flecks of other colors spread through them. I'm also solid like a rock and steady as a rock.

Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

The most thrilling thing in my life right now is the presence of my 84-year old mother. I'm so blessed to have her still around. We lost my father twenty-three years ago.

What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

The Negotiator by Dee Henderson actually impacted me quite a while ago. I bought the book one afternoon in June of 2001 and began reading it around ten that night. At six the next morning, I closed the cover. I kept thinking--I'll just read one more chapter--but that one more turned into the next and the next. I could not put the book down. I lay in bed thinking that I wanted to be like Dee Henderson when I grew up. If I could write captivating stories like her, I would be a success.

What are you working on now?

Elaine and I are involved in revising a third book for The Lazy M Ranch series--Beneath A Texas Sky. We have also started a series of cozy mysteries. Our protagonists are a pair of widowed sisters-in-law who have created a pastry recipe and call it Keps. They are developing the recipe to try to devise a way of increasing their financial assets.

Personally, I am writing three romantic suspense novels: Galveston; Wyoming Wind; and The Master's Call.

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

To purchase our book go to www.thewildrosepress.com then click on Inspirational in the categories column to the left and search for First I'm Nobody by Kasandra Elaine.

Our books can be ordered through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Books-a-Million. A local, independent bookstore can also order it for you.

Thanks, Kassy, for telling us about Elaine, yourself, and First I'm Nobody. Readers, Kassy has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Monday, January 19. To enter, leave a comment for Kassy, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Thursday, when we'll draw the winner of Christy Barritt's novel, Suspicious Minds. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Christy Barritt and Free Books!

A crime scene cleaner/CSI wannabe finds Elvis--dead as a doornail and still wearing his blue suede shoes--and can't resist sticking her nose into police business.

Before we meet today's featured novelist, I want to announce that the winner of Kathleen Fuller's novel, A Clever Disguise, is:

scaramouche9999@. . .

Congratulations! I'll contact you today for your snail mail address, and we'll get your book to you right away. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Christy Barritt, author of Suspicious Minds, Book 2 in the Squeaky Clean Series (Kregel, 2008)

Photobucket Christy Barritt is the author of several books, including Hazardous Duty, the first book in the Squeaky Clean Mystery Series. She's also a frequent speaker and freelance writer whose byline has appeared on hundreds of articles. She holds a bachelor's degree in communications and psychology from Cincinnati Christian University. She lives with her husband and son in Virginia.

Christy, tell us a bit more about the plot of Suspicious Minds.

PhotobucketIn this smart and suspenseful sequel to Hazardous Duty, crime-scene cleaner Gabby St. Claire finds herself stuck doing mold remediation to pay the bills. But her first day on the job, she uncovers a surprise in the crawlspace of a dilapidated home: Elvis, dead as a doornail and still wearing his blue suede shoes. How could she possibly keep her nose out of a case like this?

Elvis turns out to be Darnell Evans, a down-on-his-luck impersonator whose luck just got a lot worse, and there is no shortage of suspects. When his widow begs her to help, Gabby takes on the case of who-killed-the-King. In the meantime her would-be rival, Chad Davis, is turning into one hunka hunka burnin' love and starting to dish out some serious TLC, which is the last thing Gabby needs right now.

Realizing the futility of running from God and from her responsibilities, Gabby decides to reconsider her priorities her life. But when the ersatz Elvis's killer catches on to her investigation, will she survive long enough to be able to?

Sounds like a fun book! Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

My protagonist, Gabby St. Claire, is fascinating to me. She has so much baggage and so many issues. She's also quirky and I adore quirky characters. And in case you're wondering, yes, I'm known to be a little quirky myself! Gabby has had a rough life--her brother was kidnapped under her watch and later she had to drop out of college after her mother died. She was studying to be a forensic scientist and now she's doing the next best thing: she's a crime scene cleaner. There are just so many layers to Gabby, from her love of flip-flops and sassy T-shirts, to her fondness of quoting music lyrics all the time, to her deep struggles with God and religion.

Why will readers enjoy Suspicious Minds?

Readers who like mysteries and chick-lit will love the combination of the two styles in my books. Also, fans of the television shows Monk and Psych will enjoy my novels--they're mysteries but they're also fun and quirky. There's also a forensic element to the book, very CSI but without the gore.

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

PhotobucketAlyson Hannigan would be cast as my main character, Gabby St. Claire.

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Luke Wilson would be Riley.

PhotobucketAnd Keiko Agena would be cast as Sierra.

What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? Explain.

Plotting. I love plotting and making life miserable for my characters.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

I'd have to say character development. Once I get into the character's head, I'm there. But it can take me awhile to figure out my character's motivations, backgrounds, goals, what makes them unique and lovable, what they struggle with, etc.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

I'm like a guitar. When I know what I'm doing, I can create beautiful music. When I don't, my projects are just random strings that sound like chaos! Okay, that's kind of lame, but I just can't think of anything else!

Not at all. Sometimes the answer to that one fits better than expected, and I remember your playing in the band at American Christian Fiction Writers conferences. So this really fits. Now, other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

That's an easy one--my two-year-old son, Eli. He's such a joy. In the Bible, it talks about how God delights in us. I don't think I ever truly understood that concept until I became a mom. Everything Eli does just thrills and amazes me. He's learning his alphabet and beginning to string words together in sentences. He loves to sing (just like me!) and is so curious about everything. To say he thrills me would be an understatement.

I know what you mean, Christy. I never felt such appreciation for what God sacrificed for us until I was a mom. Amazing. What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

Katheryn's Secret by Linda Hall. Linda Hall always amazes me. I'm pretty good at figuring out the ending of a book before it happens. But Linda always floors me. She's so subtle and such a great writer. If I told you how the book affected me, then I'd be giving away the ending. Let's just say she put a hot topic in Christian circles into a new perspective.

What are you working on now?

I have several projects that I'm working on, including the Suburban Sleuth Mysteries, which is a series that centers around life in suburbia--complete with bossy homeowners associations, nosy neighbors, crazy cul-de-sac dynamics. The first book is The Death of the Couch Potato's Wife.

I love it! Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

Readers can find me at www.ChristyBarritt.com or at http://myblog4fun.com/cbarritt. I also blog monthly at www.Faithchicks.com and http://canblog.typepad.com.

Thanks so much, Christy, for telling us about yourself and Suspicious Minds. Readers, Christy has offered to sign a copy of her book for the winner of our drawing on Thursday, January 15. To enter, leave a comment for Christy, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Monday, when we'll draw the winner of Linore Rose Burkard's, Before the Season Ends. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Linore Burkard and Free Books!

A strong-willed, principled heroine meets her match in London's current darling rogue, known as the Paragon; tempers flare, scandal threatens, and two very different characters are thrown together in a tempestuous romance that no one can predict the outcome for--before the season ends!

Today we welcome Regency novelist Linore Rose Burkard, author of Before the Season Ends (Harvest House Publishers, December 2008).
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Linore Rose Burkard writes Inspirational Romance for the Jane Austen Soul. Her characters take you back in time to experience life and love during the Extended Regency in England (circa 1800-1830). Ms. Burkard's novels include Before the Season Ends and The House on Grosvenor Square (coming April, 2009). Her stories blend Christian faith and romance with well-researched details from the Regency period. Experience a romantic age, where timeless lessons still apply to modern life. And enjoy a romance that reminds you happy endings are possible for everyone.

Linore, your book has popped up on a lot of blogs lately! Tell us a bit more about the plot of Before the Season Ends.
Photobucket
Before the Season Ends is a bit Pygmalion (My Fair Lady), a bit Pride and Prejudice, and a little hint of Gigi. Does that explain it? It's a romance that gives readers the feeling they've visited Regency England, and leaves them with that "happy ending" glow. It's also thoroughly grounded in the perspective of a strong Christian heroine. In a nutshell, Miss Ariana Forsythe falls in love with the "wrong" man, and only God knows how it can all turn out right!

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

I'd say it was definitely the hero. Mr. Phillip Mornay is a strong "Alpha" male on the surface, but a really complex character with lots of shades to him. He was at once both fun and challenging to capture on paper. His presence always made a scene more exciting.

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

Readers love being transported to the Regency, a time of elegance and manners; they love the "BBC period movie feeling" they get while reading; and my characters are both sympathetic and at times, humorous. The love story is compelling, and the ending is a guaranteed "sigh" of satisfaction!

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

I think I just answered this for another interviewer.

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The perfect actress would be Rosamund Pike (who was recently Jane Bennet in Pride and Prejudice) but Gwyneth Paltrow (who played Jane Austen's Emma quite wonderfully) might also work. I love how Ms. Pike's face has that quality of beautiful innocence, which describes Ariana to a "t." For the hero, the moody and unpredictable Mr. Mornay, Johnny Depp would be ideal.

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What facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you? What do you struggle with in your writing? Explain.

Thinking up stories is easy. Bringing them to life on the written page, where all the research has to come into play, is the challenge. I love the research, but it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly the information you need to make a scene believable, as well as reasonable. (Something being possible does not always mean it is probable.) Likewise, I can easily think of what I'd like to have happen next, but sometimes it turns out to be a gargantuan task to make it happen with all the right historical details. I also tend to over-research because it's enjoyable, and I suspect it is a sneaky, subconscious procrastination technique as well!

Yes, I've heard that from other writers of historical novels. We contemporary novelists manage to find other means of procrastination. Now choose an inanimate object to represent you, Linore. Explain what you have in common with that object.

Ha! That's a new one. Okay. Oddly, what comes to mind is a quill sitting in an inkstand. Obvious implications, I think! I like to write, period. Pretty boring, huh?

No, not bad--no one else came up with that one, anyway! Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

I am absolutely thrilled to have a household with all my five children still home, (my youngest is about to turn six; my oldest is twenty and is home for Christmas break), and my husband works from home. I really love family time, shared movie nights, and just having fun together. When I think about how quickly time flies, and things change, I just cherish this time in my life.

What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

I think the book I'm just finishing (a few days late): Christ in Christmas, by Calvin Miller. It really helped me find that quiet, worshipful time with the Lord that is so easy to lose, when so many things try to crowd it out. December this year was even busier than usual since I was working on a new website in addition to all the Christmas activities. Miller is poignant and offered quiet devotionals that spoke to me and helped me slow down.

What are you working on now?

The sequel to Before the Season Ends is finished and will be out in April (The House in Grosvenor Square). So now I've started the final installment in my Regency Series with Harvest House, but I'm still waiting right now to find out my deadline. The other book I want to finish this year is a stand-alone regency, and both books will have the same elements of fun, faith, romance and adventure.

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

My website has some free readers' resources that regency romance fans will enjoy, and I offer a free subscription to my monthly illustrated newsletter. www.LinoreRoseBurkard.com. My books can be purchased from Amazon, Christianbook.com, or any bookstore.

Thank you, Linore, for telling us about yourself and your books! Readers, Linore has offered to sign a copy of Before the Season Ends for the winner of our drawing on Monday, January 12. To enter, leave a comment for Linore, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Thursday, when we'll draw the winner of Kathleen Fuller's novel, A Clever Disguise. You can still enter for that drawing, below.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year! Let's Meet Kathleen Fuller and Give Away Some Books!

For years, undercover spy and English earl Michael Balcarris has hidden his love for Emily Dymoke. But when he discovers she might be in danger, can he keep his profession--and his love--a secret?

Before I introduce you to this year's first featured author and her novel, I'm thrilled to start 2009 by giving away a copy of each of my released novels. Here are the names of the drawing winners:

The Guy I'm Not Dating goes to cheri2628@ . . .

Too Good to Be True goes to rebornbutterfly@ . . .


and Beach Dreams goes to cepjwms@ . . .

Congratulations to all three of you! You'll hear from me today so I can get your mailing addresses. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right in order to participate in future book give-aways!

And now let's meet novelist Kathy Fuller, author of A Clever Disguise (Avalon, December, 2008). Tell us about yourself, Kathy.

PhotobucketI'm a multi-published novelist (sweet romance and Christian romance) and a freelance writer. I live in Geneva, Ohio, with my husband and our three children.



Now tell us a bit more about the novel's plot.

PhotobucketFor years, Michael Balcarris has loved Emily Dymoke from afar. However, because of his secret profession, he is unable to admit his feelings for her and show his true self. Instead, he must continue to present himself as a frivolous fop to both London society and the woman of his dreams.

As a young girl, Emily had a private crush on Michael, who had been her brother Colin's handsome and dashing friend. Yet upon Michael's return to London after attending university, she is unable to abide his insufferable presence. To make matters worse, he insists on being everywhere she is--including her family's country home when they go on summer holiday.

During their time in the countryside, however, Emily starts to see a new side of Michael. She also has to fight her growing attraction to him, leaving her to wonder how she could be falling in love with a man she can barely tolerate.

Which character in your novel most interested you while you wrote? Why?

I loved Emily, because she was unpredictable. As I wrote the book, I never knew what she would say or do. She is fiercely protective of those she loves, and is loyal to the end. She's also insecure and impulsive, which can get her into trouble sometimes. She was a multi-faceted character, and a lot of fun to write.

Why will readers enjoy your novel?

It's a blend of light humor, light mystery, and heavy romance (but very sweet) set in Regency England. The novel has a little bit of everything.

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

Great question! Kate Winslet and James McAvoy. Photobucket
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Kate would do a great job playing a vulnerable, but feisty heroine and James can play both humor and angst beautifully.

Oooo, love James McAvoy! So, what facet of the writing craft comes easiest to you, Kathy? Explain.

Dialogue. I love writing dialogue, and rarely have difficulty "hearing" the characters in my head. Dialogue is also what I enjoy reading the most in a book.

What do you struggle with in your writing?

Plot, plot, plot! I'm not the greatest plotter, and I rely heavily on my critique partners and friends to help me flesh out my plots. I've read books on plot, I've tried different methods, but it's just a facet I think I'll always find difficult.

Choose an inanimate object to represent you. Explain what you have in common with that object.

A lump of clay. I like to think I'm flexible and adaptable.

Other than your writing, what is something about your life, right now, that thrills you?

My family. I have two teenagers and a preteen, and while life can be frustrating, I love seeing how they're growing and forming their own opinions and realizations. My husband and I have been married for 15 years, and I love this adventure we're on together.

What is the last book you read that impacted you? How did it affect you?

I've read some really great books recently. Probably the one that really stuck with me is My Sister Dilly by Maureen Lang. I don't read much women's fiction, but I really enjoyed this book, and the struggles the two main characters went through. I can't recommend the novel highly enough.

What are you working on now?

I just finished the first novel in a three book Amish series for Thomas Nelson. A Man of His Word will be released in August, along with the third book in my regency series with Avalon, A Daring Return.

Where else can readers find you or your writing online? Please include the link for purchasing your book!

My website: www.kathleenfuller.com
My blog: www.kathleenfuller.blogspot
My books from Avalon are library books, so you can request them from your local library.

Kathy, thanks so much for opening the new year with us and telling us about your books. Readers, Kathy has offered to sign a copy of A Clever Disguise for the winner of our drawing on Thursday, January 8. To enter, leave a comment for Kathy, below. Leave your email address, in case you win, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. If you subscribe to my blog, at right (or if you're already subscribed) you'll be entered an additional time to this drawing and all future drawings.

Check back on Monday, when we'll meet Linore Burkard, author of Before the Season Ends.

Finally, take a look at some of the fantastic novels being released this month!

1. Bayou Betrayal, Book 5 of the Bayou series by Robin Caroll from Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense. When a woman arrives in town to meet her relatives, an arsonist doesn't want her to stay!

2. Be Strong and Curvaceous, All About Us #3 by Shelley Adina from Hachette FaithWords. Carly Aragon's faith is tested when she takes on a crush crasher who comes accessorized with a stalker.

3. Before the Season Ends, Lights of London, Book One by Linore Rose Burkard from Harvest House. A Christian young woman must make her way through the treacherous waters of a Regency Season in London; while her worldly, wealthy aunt tries to marry her off for money.

4. Cursebreaker, Book One of The Order of the Scrolls Series by Nancy Wentz from Whitaker House. Author Nancy Wentz's drama unfolds in both the physical and spiritual realms, treating the reader to a thrilling tale of mystery, passion, and historical intrigue.

5. Fireflies In December by Jennifer Erin Valent from Tyndale House. A young girl comes of age amidst the racial prejudice of Depression-era Virginia.

6. Hannah Grace, The Daughters of Jacob Kane by Sharlene MacLaren from Whitaker House. A new century, a new sheriff, a new love...many things are about to change in the town of Sandy Shores.

7. Kiriath's Quest by Rick Barry from JourneyForth Books (a division of BJU Press). A YA Christian fantasy adventure that reaffirms the value of faith, family, love and loyalty.

8. Milk Money by Cecelia Dowdy from Barbour Publishing (Heartsong Presents). Can Frank find faith in Jesus, while battling alcoholism, as he seeks the love of Emily Cooper?

9. Mommy's Hometown Hero, Dalton Brothers Book 2 by Merrillee Whren from Steeple Hill. Ex-soldier Matt Dalton wants to bring his friend Rachel Charbonneau back to the Lord and win her heart as well.

10. No Place For A Lady, Heart Of The West Book One by Maggie Brendan from Revell. Can a Southern belle tame the heart of a rugged cowboy?

11. Paper Roses, Texas Dreams #1 by Amanda Cabot from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. There's only one problem when mail-order bride Sarah Dobbs arrives in Texas to greet her groom: he's been murdered.

12. Sweetwater Gap, (Women of Faith Fiction) by Denise Hunter from Thomas Nelson. A woman returns home to help save her family's apple orchard and must face the ghosts that chased her away so many years ago.

13. The Edge of Light, Book One in the At Home in Beldon Grove Series by Ann Shorey from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. It's 1838 on the Missouri frontier--how will Molly McGarvie keep her young family together after her husband's sudden death?

14. What Sarah Saw, Book One, Without a Trace Love Inspired Suspense continuity series by Margaret Daley from Steeple Hill Love Inspired Suspense. The tragic conclusion to a kidnapping case broke Sam and Jocelyn apart, but for a child's sake they must join forces to uncover what Sarah saw.

Happy New Year, readers, and happy reading!
 

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