“Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” ― G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, December 20, 2018

"In the Shadow of Croft Towers" by Abigail Wilson—Blog Tour (Review) and GIVEAWAY!

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About the Book


Book: In the Shadow of Croft Towers
Author: Abigail Wilson
Genre: Historical fiction, romantic suspense

Release Date: January 15, 2019

In the Shadow of Croft TowerFrom debut author Abigail Wilson comes a mysterious Regency tale of secrets and spies, love and treachery.

Orphaned Sybil Delafield jumps at the opportunity for a position at the mysterious Croft Towers. She believes she was hired to act as companion to a dying woman, but a highway robbery and a hostile welcome from the Chalcroft family cause her to wonder if she was actually hired to help someone spy for France.

An unsolved murder adds intrigue to this already secretive family, and Sybil recognizes Mrs. Chalcroft’s handsome grandson as one of the infamous highwaymen who robbed her. Sybil must determine if this man’s charming smile and earnest eyes speak the truth or if he is simply using her like others in the house. Everyone seems to have something to hide, and Sybil must decide who to trust while also coming to terms with the truth about her own past.

Click here to purchase your copy!

My Review

“In the Shadow of Croft Towers,” from debut author Abigail Wilson, has easily become one of my favorite books of 2018!  I love a good Gothic romance and this book is certainly just that.  Ms. Wilson is very good at setting the Gothic tone. 

The story starts off with danger and a highway robbery during a storm.  I was hooked!  Our hesitant heroine, Sybil, arrives at house shrouded in mystery and secrets.  There are all the elements for a perfect Gothic read in this story: mysterious rooms, hidden motives and identities, secrets and resident ghosts. 

Not only that, but Ms. Wilson is a fabulous writer.  The story and writing style can be described as a mix of Dickens and Daphne du Maurier.  I loved this book and looked forward to reading it every night!  I highly recommend it!

Content: I give this book a PG rating for some content.  Some examples of the content are: the word devil is used; mention of a woman’s bosom; people drink alcohol; mention of illegitimate children; mention of “ravishing” a woman; a man is drunk and tries to apprehend a woman.

Rating: I obviously give this book 5 stars!

Genre: Christian fiction; Historical; Gothic; Regency; Mystery; Romance

I want to thank Abigail Wilson, Celebrate Lit and Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.

About the Author


Abigail Wilson
Abigail Wilson combines her passion for Regency England with intrigue and adventure to pen historical mysteries with a heart. A Registered Nurse, chai tea addict, and mother of two crazy kids, Abigail fills her spare time hiking the National Parks, attending her daughter’s gymnastic meets, and curling up with a great book. In 2017, Abigail won WisRWA’s Fab Five contest and ACFW’s First Impressions contest as well as placing as a finalist in the Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. She is a cum laude graduate of the University of Texas at Austin and currently lives in Dripping Springs, Texas, with her husband and children. Connect with Abigail at www.acwilsonbooks.com


Excerpt from the Book



I often wonder what my life would have been like if I had never learned the truth. I wouldn’t have set off as I did for Croft Towers. I never would have met him.

It’s strange what I remember about the day I left London. The mail coach was late; the weather wretched. The clock had struck midnight long before two strangers and I ducked beneath the postmaster’s outstretched umbrella to board the Royal Mail and rumble across the North Downs.

That difficult journey east marked the beginning of an unseasonably cold autumn. Frigid rain pelted the coach windows. The undercarriage squealed beneath the seats as a metallic scent wound its way between the drafty boards. I gripped the windowsill, wondering if the coachman intended to hit every bump in the road.

“Far to go, miss?”

The woman’s voice startled me. Dressed head to toe in red
satin, she’d endured the last few darkened hours with a handful of smelling salts and a tongue hot for complaints, but she hadn’t spoken to me until now. Not until the first hint of rain-soaked daylight peeked over the horizon.

I lowered my gaze and fiddled with my bonnet ribbons. “Yes, ma’am . . . well, not too much farther, I hope.”

Taken from “In the Shadow of Croft Towers” by Abigail Wilson. Copyright © 2018 by Abigail Wilson. Used by permission of http://www.thomasnelson.com/.

Blog Stops

Just the Write Escape, December 20
Faery Tales Are Real, December 20
The Avid Reader, December 20
Mary Hake, December 22
Carpe Diem, December 22
Inklings and notions, December 23
Blogging With Carol, December 23
Stories By Gina, December 24
Remembrancy, December 24
Madeline Clark, December 25
Janices book reviews, December 26
Back Porch Reads, December 27
Book by Book, December 27
Daysong Reflections, December 28
All-of-a-kind Mom, December 28
Godly Book Reviews, December 29
Bigreadersite, December 29
A Rup Life, December 30
Bibliophile Reviews, December 30
A Reader’s Brain, December 31
Texas Book-aholic, December 31
Bookworld Reviews, January 1
Pause for Tales, January 1


To celebrate her tour, Abigail is giving away a grand prize of one finished copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/d777/in-the-shadow-of-croft-towers-celebration-tour-giveaway

Saturday, December 15, 2018

A Realistic Story with a Sweet Romance--"A Place at Our Table" by Amy Clipston--Review

 “A Place at Our Table” by Amy Clipston is the first book in the “Amish Homestead” series.  It deals with very realistic issues and can be a heavier read at times, but the romance is so sweet.  I don’t usually expect Amish books to deal with such complex topics, but I really enjoyed it!

The characters in this book deal with loss, fear, guilt and grief.  I felt the first half of the book is rather heavy; but as it shifted to focus more on the romance, the tone turns lighter and sweeter.  I really appreciate the lessons the story includes, such as trusting the Lord with our futures and that tomorrow is never promised so you should live your life to the fullest.

There are some great relationships and friendships in this book.  I appreciate seeing the family and sibling relationships, which play a big role in the story.  The romance is sweet and slow building.  I found myself really rooting for Kayla and Jamie (our main characters) and their relationship.

All in all, I enjoyed this book.  In the beginning it was slower for me and dealt with some heavy topics, but as the story progressed, I found myself invested in the characters.  I would especially recommend this book to fans of Amish fiction.

Content: This is a clean read with no mature content.

Rating: I give this book 3.5 stars.

Genre: Amish; Christian fiction; Romance

I want to thank the Fiction Guild, Amy Clipston and Zondervan for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.

About the Author:

Hi, I’m Amy Clipston. I am an author of Amish and Christian fiction with HarperCollins Christian Publishing. Most of my books focus on the Amish community, faith, and love. I also write romance novels and young adult inspirational stories.

To visit the author's website click here
To purchase a copy of the book click here

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

"Once Upon a Farm: Lessons on Growing Love, Life, and Hope on a New Frontier" by Rory Feek--Review

My Review:
“Once Upon a Farm”, an autobiographical book by Rory Feek, is a story about lessons learned and life lived.  Feek is living his life for God and shares little snippets of that life with the reader.  Feek is a well-known songwriter and musician who used to be one half of the country music duo “Joey and Rory”; the other half being his wife Joey who passed away in 2016.

I have seen a lot about Joey and Rory on social media, especially Joey’s battle with cancer.  I thought this book would be about how Rory is dealing with her death and moving on.  Instead, it’s more of a compilation of essays written by Rory about random topics involving his life and lessons he’s learned.  It’s not in chronological order either.  The book is interesting because I did learn more about his life.  It did make me realize that life is short and I should live in the moment.  I should not always wish for a better life but love the one I’m living.  Rory Feek is a good writer and there are some great lessons in this book.  I would recommend it to anyone who loves hearing the personal stories of famous individuals, or who loves country music and living, or is even just a fan of the couple!
Content:  I give this book a PG-13 rating due to some issues discussed and some content.  Some examples of the content are:  Rory talks about his past life drinking and chasing women; there is some content that may be controversial in the Christian community; the word “hell” is used; references to sex; the Lord’s name is taken in vain.
Rating:  I give this book 3 stars.
Genre: Christian non-fiction

I want to thank Rory Feek, BookLook Bloggers and Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255. 

About the Author:

Rory Feek is a true renaissance man, known as one of Nashville’s premiere songwriters, entrepreneurs, and out-of-the-box thinkers. He is a world-class storyteller, crossing all creative mediums, from music and film to books and the Internet, and is the New York Times bestselling author of This Life I Live.

As a blogger, Rory shares his heart and story with the world through thislifeilive.com and has more than two million Facebook followers. As a songwriter, Rory has written multiple number-one songs. As an artist, he is half of the Grammy-winning county music duo Joey + Rory. He and his wife, Joey Martin, toured the world and sold hundreds of thousands of records. As a filmmaker, Rory wrote and filmed the touching documentary To Joey, With Love and directed the upcoming feature-length film Josephine, an epic love story set during the declining months of the Civil War.

Rory and his youngest daughter, Indiana, live an hour south of Nashville in an 1870s farmhouse near their family-owned diner, Marcy Jo’s Mealhouse.

To read a sample click here
To find out more and purchase the book, click here for the product page

Saturday, December 1, 2018

An Enchanting Story about the Woman before Anne--"Marilla of Green Gables" by Sarah McCoy--Review

My Review:

L.M. Montgomery is one of my favorite authors and “Anne of Green Gables” one of my all-time favorite books!  So I had high hopes for “Marilla of Green Gables” after seeing so many people gush about it.  Those hopes were met and exceeded!!!  Wow!

“Marilla of Green Gables” by Sarah McCoy is a love letter to all “Anne” fans who want more of Avonlea.  Ms. McCoy’s writing is seamless and I truly felt like I was reading another book in the series by Montgomery herself.  Ms. McCoy stays true to all things Avonlea, Green Gables and Marilla’s character.  It was so good to be back in Avonlea, seeing familiar people and also some foreshadowing to the Anne books.  It’s so clever how Ms. McCoy weaves in little aspects from the Anne books.  So many scenes echo those of the original books; it’s interesting to see how they play out with Marilla.  The book even has great faith aspects!

Fans of L.M. Montgomery and “Anne of Green Gables” will not want to miss this book!  It is one of my top reads of 2018 and will be on my keeper shelf. 

Content:  This is a clean read.  I give it a PG for some very minor content.  Some examples of the content are:  talk of wine and spirits and people being drunk; there’s a hanging; the word “Negro” is used in context; a woman is a companion to a man she’s not married to.

Rating:  I give this book 5 stars!

Genre: Historical Fiction; Christian fiction; Romance; Retelling

I want to thank Sarah McCoy, LibraryThing Early Reviewers, William Morrow Books and Harper Collins Publishers for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255. 

Author Bio:

Sarah McCoy is the New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author of Marilla of Green Gables (William Morrow/Harper Collins, October 23, 2018); The Mapmaker’s Children; The Baker’s Daughter, a 2012 Goodreads Choice Award Best Historical Fiction nominee; The Time It Snowed in Puerto Rico; the novella “The Branch of Hazel” in Grand Central; and Le souffle des feuilles et des promesses, a French exclusive title.

Sarah’s work has been featured in Real SimpleThe MillionsYour Health MonthlyHuffington Post and other publications. She has taught English writing at Old Dominion University and at the University of Texas at El Paso.

The daughter of an Army officer, her family was stationed in Germany during her childhood. She grew up in Virginia and now lives with her husband, an orthopedic sports surgeon, and their dog, Gilbert, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

To visit the author's website click here
To purchase the book click here