Book Recommendation ~ Organized Backup (Luella Linley: License to Meddle) by Meredith Resce

Book Description:

Regency romance author, Luella Linley, arranges her characters’ lives, making sure that they weather all storms and live happily-ever-after. Her characters are putty in her hands, but her 21st Century adult children are not so easily organized. When her daughter, Megan, asks for support with an inappropriate situation at work, Luella decides Megan should get a boyfriend to intimidate her boss. The cop who just pulled Luella over for speeding is a likely candidate.

Cam Fletcher is expecting to be interviewed by a famous author. Instead of sharing insights into his job working in the police force, he is sharing a meal with the famous author and her daughter, Megan. When left alone with Megan, Cam wonders when the interview will begin. The parents’ extended absence gives him a clue, which Megan confirms. Luella Linley is playing matchmaker, but is he willing to play the game?

Narelle’s Thoughts:

Regency romance author Luella Linley has the best of intentions…and can’t understand why her children don’t appreciate her talent for matchmaking. A fake engagement, a daughter in trouble, and a handsome policeman playing the hero—what could possibly go wrong?

Megan and her siblings have learned to manage their mother when she attempts to push boundaries and forgets her children are not characters in her books. Megan also has work issues due to her sleazy boss, and she appreciates Cam’s help and support because she’s stuck in a difficult situation. Cam is an adorable hero who is more than willing to rescue Megan and pretend he’s the doting boyfriend. Until it’s not pretend anymore for either Megan or Cam…

This funny and charming romantic comedy from Meredith Resce that also touches on the more serious issues of faith and workplace relations will put a smile on your face and give you food for thought. Highly recommended.

ACFW New Releases: November 2020

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Contemporary Romance:

Snowbound in Winterberry Falls by Ann Brodeur — Owning her own PR firm is all reporter Stephanie Clark wants for Christmas, but the idea of running a prestigious election campaign in the country’s capital throws her stomach into knots. A last minute vacation road trip to focus and to seek God’s direction for her life ends up in disaster when she gets caught in the worst snowstorm to hit Vermont in over a decade, crashing her into a small town and the one person she’d rather forget. Former photojournalist Jason Miller hadn’t planned on being solely responsible for saving his family business from financial ruin. He’s barely keeping the newspaper in print, his News Editor has gone AWOL during the town’s most celebrated holiday festival, and reports of missing Christmas decorations have everyone on edge. When a desperate knock at the newsroom door brings a ghost from Christmas past back into his life, can Jason make up for his prior behavior without breaking his promise to Stephanie’s father? Will Stephanie’s quest to solve the town’s Christmas caper, and uncover the truth about Jason’s disappearance, cost her everything she’s ever wanted? (Contemporary Romance from Anaiah Press)

The Cul-de-Sac War by Melissa Ferguson — All’s fair in love and prank wars. As a live theater actress, Bree Leake doesn’t want to be tied down. But just when it’s time to move on again, Bree’s parents make her an offer: hold steady for a full year, and they will give her the one thing she’s always wanted—her grandmother’s house. And then there’s Chip McBride—her handsome and infuriating next-door neighbor. Chip just might be the only person whose stubborn streak can match Bree’s. She would move heaven and earth to have him off her cul-de-sac and out of her life, but according to the bargain she’s struck, she can’t move out of her house and away from the man who’s making her life miserable. So begins Bree’s obsessive new mission: to drive Chip out of the neighborhood—and fast. But as their pranks escalate, the line between love and hate starts to blur—and their heated rivalry threatens to take a hilarious, heartwarming, and romantic new turn. (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

The Calm I Seek by Christina Lourens — After the violent death of her husband, Rebecca Holmes is content leading a quiet life spending time with her sisters and niece. When her younger sister Hannah asks her to plan her wedding, Rebecca discovers her friends and family all think her life is empty. Determined to prove them wrong, Rebecca takes up salsa lessons where she meets the charismatic salsa teacher, Gabriel Rodriguez. Falling in love is the last thing Rebecca wanted to do, but she is inexplicably drawn to Gabriel. Just when she’s decided to give her heart to Gabriel, disaster strikes her family, and she is forced to confront her past actions. Can there be redemption for her and can she forgive those who betrayed her? (Contemporary Romance from Pheasant Hill Press)

His Christmas Wish by Allie Pleiter — All he wants for Christmas is a family… To make his little nephew happy, this bachelor will need help… After his nephew, Cole, is orphaned, Jake Sanders vows to give the little boy the best Christmas possible…except Jake doesn’t know the first thing about kids! So when Cole’s preschool teacher, Emma Mullins, offers to pitch in, Jake’s grateful for her guidance. But while Jake and Emma share an immediate connection, their blossoming love must first survive the secret she’s hiding… (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Together for Good by Penelope Powell — Having lost her mother in a tragic accident, Laney Spence is no stranger to grief and loss. Despite this tragedy touching her life at such a young age, Laney has maintained her belief that God brings good out of even the most difficult circumstances. For her, that good came in the form of her older brother’s best friend, Matthew Jordan. Kind and compassionate, Matthew helped her grieve—and she’s been harboring a crush on him ever since. Years later, when tragedy shatters Matthew’s life, Laney is there for him the same way he’d been there for her all those years ago. But they’re not kids anymore. She’s a teacher with little life experience, and he’s a jaded divorce lawyer with a past he’d rather keep secret. Neither of them can ignore the attraction that blooms, though, leaving them both wondering—is attraction, history, and a shared faith in God enough to keep them together for good, or will circumstances beyond their control drive them apart? (Contemporary Romance from Anaiah Press)

Historical Romance:

Rocky Mountain Revelation by Lisa J. Flickinger — Widowed at nineteen, Madeline Lamb seeks to find a new husband amongst the crew of the Rocky Mountain log drive. With a baby growing inside her, she has no choice. She signs on as cook’s helper, and it soon becomes apparent her options for a mate are limited. Madeline’s grieving heart wavers between the security an older man offers and the tender feelings a new crew member stirs. Will Matheson earned the chance to work the high-paying spring log drive. The boon ensures he can recoup the logging wages stolen by a pretty face with some fast fingers. Frustration builds when the boss pulls him from the river and assigns him the job of camp chore boy. If it wasn’t for the pretty cook’s helper, he’d take the first train home. When the dangers of the river journey prove more treacherous than anyone expects, the budding attraction between Will and Madeline is put to the test. If they survive the adventure, life as they know it will never be the same. (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)

A Bride for Seamus by Linda Shenton Matchett — When her father dies after a lengthy illness, Madeline Winthrop is horrified to discover his will bequeaths their home to his business partner, a cruel and dishonest man, leaving her destitute. With no job or marriage prospects, she seeks help from her pastor who suggests she considers becoming a mail order bride. There’s just one catch. She’s to marry the man by proxy before ever meeting him. After three mail order brides refuse to stay and marry Seamus Fitzpatrick because of his brother’s mental issues and two rambunctious children, Seamus decides a proxy marriage is the only way he’s going to secure a wife. When the Boston-bred socialite arrives with few practical skills, he wonders if he made the biggest mistake of his life. (Historical Romance from Shortwave Press)

Romantic Suspense:

Dangerous Deceptions by Evelyn M. Hill — Rachel Garrett has the ideal life in a small town, surrounded by people she trusts—until a stranger arrives and tells her that she is living a lie. Michael Sullivan’s claim that she’s been brainwashed can’t be right. Her life is perfect. But ever since he’s shown up, she’s had to deal with people attempting to manipulate, drug, or even kidnap her. Now Rachel must decide if she believes her closest friends…or the one man who makes her feel truly safe. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Forgiven Again by Gina Holder — Annie Staten, now known as Kathleen Phillips, has dreamed of pursuing a political career and following in her father’s footsteps. But Richard was a hated man during his tenure as governor and now his enemies will stop at nothing to prevent his daughter from winning the election. Ryan Whitestone has loved Annie since high school, but his heart is broken by the woman she has become. When the daughter she gave up for adoption comes back into her life, can he help Kathleen heal from her pain and remind her of who she used to be? Will Kathleen be able to forgive herself, put the past behind her, and find love again? The continuing story of No Greater Love. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Grave Christmas Secrets by Sharee Stover — Discovering buried evidence makes her a target. At a prehistoric site, forensic anthropologist Taya McGill uncovers a recently buried body days before Christmas and finds herself in a killer’s sights. Now on the run with undercover ATF agent Keegan Stryker, she must rely on him to guard her as they figure out why someone would kill to keep this murder unsolved. But can they unearth the truth before someone silences them both for good? (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Speculative:

Uncharted Freedom by Keely Brooke Keith — Naomi McIntosh is running from her family’s oppressive expectations and the loathsome man her father has demanded she marry. Renaming herself to live incognito, she takes a housekeeping job at the Inn at Falls Creek and promises God this false identity will be her last. When shepherd James Roberts goes home to the Inn at Falls Creek for his sister’s wedding, he doesn’t expect the woman who once broke his heart to be working there. No matter how much he wants to be with Naomi again, he can’t go along with her charade, especially since he is trying to persuade his father to make him the inn’s heir. Though Naomi yearns for a future with James, if she confesses her deception to everyone, her estranged fiancé will find her. And the longer James goes without telling his family the truth about Naomi—and their growing relationship—the further he jeopardizes the inheritance. But just when their relationship looks promising, the inn proves to be a poor hiding place from Naomi’s past. (Speculative Romance, Independently Published)

Thriller:

Termination Zone by Adam Blumer –In the Justice Club, you’re either all in, or you’re dead. Pianist Landon Jeffers has been hiding in Georgia’s woods to keep his loved ones safe from the Justice Club, the cybercrime network seeking to control him through his brain implant. But when his means of blocking their controlling signals is compromised and he receives word that a family member may be in danger, he is forced out of hiding. Now Landon covertly works with unexpected allies including the FBI to help shut the Justice Club down from the inside. But when he is prepped during his concert tour for a high-profile hit targeting the highest levels of the US government, the stakes have never been higher. Can he and his allies thwart the Justice Club’s mission of violence in time? Even if that means placing the woman he loves in danger? The deadline is coming. And death is certain if he fails. (Techno-Thriller Suspense, Independently Published)

Soul Raging by Ronie Kendig — Leif Metcalfe is done waiting for answers and seizes control, a move that comes with a high price and a deadly risk: teaming up with the enemy. He can only hope that what he uncovers will heal the wounds he’s inflicted on those he loves. Iskra Todorova believes Leif is on a collision course with death and knows firsthand the irrevocable cost of that path to the soul. While trying to protect her daughter and intervene with Leif, Iskra is forced to set her sights on the man behind the evil organization ArC–Ciro Veratti. Torn apart by injuries and opposing views on how to handle Leif’s act of treachery, team Reaper hunts one of their own. The only thing they agree on is not stopping but starting the final battle prophesied in the Book of the Wars. (Suspense from Bethany House [Baker])

Young Adult:

Fortune’s Fall by Katherine Barger — While her classmates prepare for elite careers across America, Nyssa Ardelone trains for her secret job as the president’s dream interpreter. But when her mentor lies to the president about the prophecy in his latest dream, Nyssa must figure out why before the lie unravels. What she learns could destroy her own future. Fearful of a rumored rebellion, the president has launched a gas attack on Nyssa’s hometown, and her mentor lied about the dream to protect the survivors from more harm. When Nyssa learns her parents were injured in the attack, she flees with a stranger sent to steal the antidote—a stranger who claims to know her. Together, they race to deliver the cure as well as an interpretation of another prophetic dream only Nyssa can provide. But a devastating loss dulls her caution, and she learns too late that not everyone is trustworthy. To survive the president’s deadly pursuit, Nyssa must break every rule she’s ever followed, learning along the way that faith is the only thing that can save her. (Young Adult from Anaiah Press)

Bookish Tuesday: Joy to the World – Interview and #Giveaway (via International Christian Fiction Writers)

Let’s welcome Carolyn Miller, Amanda Barrett and Erica Vetsch to Bookish Tuesday. Joy to the World is their new Christmas regency romance release. We’re chatting with the co-authors – PLUS – giving away a copy of Joy to the World.

Bookish Tuesday | Joy to the World Interview and Giveaway

Book Recommendation – Remember Me (A Chapel Cove Romance Book 1) by Marion Ueckermann

Book Description:

What she most needed was right there in front of her all along.

At the age of thirteen, Clarise Aylward and her two best friends each pen a wish list of things they want to achieve. Deciding to bury a tin containing their life goals, the friends vow to unearth the metal box once they’ve all turned forty. But as the decades pass and each girl chases her dreams, the lists are forgotten.

Heath Brock has been in love with Clarise for over twenty-seven years and counting. As a young man, he’d plucked up the courage to ask her out on a Valentine’s date, but the couple succumbed to pent-up passions, sending Clarise dashing for the other side of the country.

Years after Clarise’s sudden departure, Heath serves as youth pastor. He’d held out hope of Clarise’s return, but buries his feelings for his childhood sweetheart when he learns she’s married.

Almost penniless, divorced, and with nowhere to go, Clarise returns home to Chapel Cove, her future uncertain. She’s approaching forty with her dreams in tatters. When old feelings resurface, Clarise wonders whether she’s ever really fallen out of love with Heath.

What’s the man of God to do when his old flame returns, seemingly to stay?

With Clarise back in town, Heath is determined not to repeat past mistakes, but if he has anything to say about it, never again will he lose the only woman he’s ever loved.

Welcome to Chapel Cove, Oregon, where life begins at forty. 

As their fortieth birthdays loom, three childhood friends return unexpectedly to their home town. Stunning coastline, a harbor against life’s storms, and a welcoming community await them. Hurt by challenges, disappointments, and failures; reminded of their unfulfilled hopes and dreams, they’re offered a fresh start. And, if they’re brave enough to accept it, a second chance at love. Will they allow God to safely anchor them in their hearts’ home, or will doubt and uncertainty drive them to repeat their old mistakes?

Discover this small town filled with love, hope, and faith, in Chapel Cove Romances, a series of sweet and clean standalone Christian stories from three bestselling authors.

Narelle’s Thoughts:

I enjoyed reading Remember Me and visiting with the small town community in Chapel Cove. Reese (Clarise) returns to her hometown a broken woman with big emotional scars. Her high flying days as a supermodel living a luxurious lifestyle are a fading memory. Her cheating ex-husband, who was also her agent/business manager, has left her destitute. Reese pawned her engagement ring to pay for her flight from NYC, and she’s staying with her parents in her childhood home with no prospects and her fortieth birthday looming.

For years, Heath has lived a modest lifestyle in a trailer beside the beach. He became a Christian after Clarise left town, and he’s now working as a youth pastor with a heart for helping people. Like Reese, he has regrets about their past relationship. He wishes she’d never left town to chase her modelling career dreams. He’s watched her high profile career from afar while quietly living his life in the beautiful coastal town. He is the boy next door, and the supermodel is way out of his league.

Reunion romance is one of my favorite tropes, and this story delivers on the promise of a sweet and heartfelt romance complicated by Reese and Heath’s history and misbeliefs about themselves and each other. I like reading romances with older characters who have a maturity and life experiences that can give them a different perspective.

I will confess that I’m not usually a fan of romance stories with heroes who are pastors. A few decades ago, a large number of CCR’s that I read included pastor heroes. I became bored reading the same old storylines. Despite my prejudices, I loved Heath’s character more than Reese’s. His down-to-earth and laid back approach to life, combined with his genuine faith, had me cheering for him to win Reese’s heart. I highly recommend Remember Me to readers who enjoy small town reunion romance stories with a strong faith element.

Full disclosure: The lovely Chapel Cove authors have invited me to write a Chapel Cove romance – releasing in 2021. I’m enjoying getting to know the characters and binge reading the series in preparation for writing my Chapel Cove story in early 2021.

Read a FREE sample at Amazon.com

ACFW New Releases: October 2020

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Children’s

The Firefly Warriors by Susan Count — A sparkling light entices a young naturalist and his bothersome cousin deep into the woods. Soon the young warriors are thrust into battle to save the magic of the last firefly family. When a mysterious light entices ten-year-old Davy and his younger cousin, Anderson, into the woods, they discover the forest is alive with wonder. Firefly magic dazzles the boys and they vow to save the insects from annihilation.Then a fire rages in the forest. In spite of the cousins’ creative efforts to help the firefighters, the situation for the fireflies plummets from grim to dire. As the blaze consumes the fireflies’ habitat, the young warriors despair. If only there was—even one left. (Children’s from Hastings Creations Group)

Harvey, the Traveling Harmonica by Becky Van Vleet — Meet Harvey, a little harmonica that likes to travel. From Grandpa to Dad to Walter, Harvey sings tunes sweeter than candy. But Harvey has competition with Buddy, the family dog, whose howling is so annoying that even the birds fly away. When Harvey accidentally falls into the rushing creek waters, losing sight of Walter, can Buddy save him? Young children will delight in this fun tale filled with colorful illustrations about a little harmonica’s adventures. (Children’s from Elk Lake Publishing)

Contemporary Romance:

Saving Grace by Amy R Anguish — Michelle Wilson’s one goal in life was to become a top journalist at the local paper back in her hometown of Cedar Springs, AR. But on the way to bringing that dream to reality, a life-changing wreck interrupts Michelle’s plans and adds an orphaned baby into the mix. Now, she has tough decisions ahead—did God put her in that accident to save baby Grace? And if so, why is it so hard to convince everyone else she should be the baby’s new mommy? Greg Marshall has been Michelle’s best friend his whole life. He’s thrilled she’s moving back home, but not so sure about her sudden desire to be a single mom. His feelings for her have grown through the years, but she’s never seemed to notice. Can he help Michelle with the adoption and grow their relationship at the same time? (Contemporary Romance from Scrivenings Press)

Melodies of Christmas Love by Lynnette BonnerJoAnn DurginChautona HavigAnnette M. IrbyDawn Kinzer, Lesley Ann McDaniel, and Sylvia Stewart — Seven Contemporary Christmas Romance Novellas, each centered around a Christmas carol. The Heart of Christmas by Lynette Bonner, Love on a Mission in Millcreek by JoAnn Durgin, The Bells of New Cheltenham by Chautona Havig, A Christmas Duet by Annette M. Irby, A Night Divine by Dawn Kinzer, To Hear the Angels Sing by Lesley Ann McDaniel, and Prairie Rose by Sylvia Stewart. (Contemporary Romance from Pacific Lights Publishing)

The Christmas Bargain by Lisa Carter — All she needs is a date for the holidays… She needs a date for a wedding. But a fiancé wasn’t part of the plan… Unwilling to attend a wedding alone, artist Lila Penry makes a deal with Sam Gibson—art lessons for his adorable niece in exchange for being her date. But their Christmas agreement becomes a nightmare when everyone thinks they’re engaged. All Lila wants is to leave town for her dream job…so what happens when Sam steals his way into her heart? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Christmas Lights and Romance by Joi Copeland, Judy Goodman Howard, Elizabeth LudwigPatti Jo MooreJ. Carol NemethMartha RogersDiane Yates— Christmas contemporary romances sure to warm your heart during the Christmas season. Romance, mystery, suspense. This collection has it all. (Contemporary Romance from Winged Publications)

His Love Revealed by Cynthia Herron — Since childhood, Ida Mae Hoscutt, the beloved proprietress of the Come and Get It Diner, has loved Charles “Chuck” Farrow from afar. Now on the eve of her thirty-ninth birthday with no marriage proposal in sight, Ida Mae mourns past mistakes and contemplates a makeover. When a radio commercial wrenches Ida Mae’s heart, will a sudden turn of events sabotage her chance for happiness or will a long-held secret be the answer to love ever-after? As Ida Mae’s right-hand man at the Come and Get It, Chuck yearns to shift gears and start over. He’s ready to shelve bachelorhood and blunders in favor of possibilities and new beginnings. When he prepares to move forward, two things challenge his objective. One is the father who walked away and never looked back. The other? A decades-old question that only Ida Mae can answer. And Ida Mae isn’t talking. (Contemporary Romance from Mountain Brook Ink)

Falling For the Foe by Milla Holt — She can’t stand him, and he blames her for his company’s woes. But now HIV treatment activist Nia and pharma boss Magnus have to work together to get what they want. He’s out to rescue his business, and she’s trying to save lives. Neither ever dreamed it would be their hearts on the line. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Christmas in Galway by Elizabeth Ludwig — It’s been two years since a drunk driving accident claimed the life of Elinor Walsh’s fiancé. Though she’s forged on to create a thriving design business for herself, the past still haunts her. Prompted by her friends, she finally capitulates and schedules a flight to Ireland—a trip that should have been her honeymoon. Armed with just a list her fiancé wrote and the keys to a rental car, Elinor heads to Galway, never dreaming that the people she meets there will change her life forever. Confronted with a choice—her past with an old friend or her future with a new one—will she finally be able to move beyond her grief? Or will she cut her losses, and her trip short, and miss out on the one thing she never expected? (Contemporary Romance from Winged Publications)

The Key To Love by Betsy St. Amant — The only thing Bri Duval loves more than baking petit fours is romance. So much so, she’s created her own version of the famous Parisian lovelock wall at her bakery in Story, Kansas. She never expects it to go viral–or for Trek Magazine to send travel writer Gerard Fortier to feature the bakery. He’s definitely handsome, but Bri has been holding out for a love story like the one her parents had, and that certainly will not include the love-scorned-and-therefore-love-scorning Gerard. Just when it seems Bri’s bakery is poised for unprecedented success, a series of events threaten not just her business but the pedestal she’s kept her parents on all these years. Maybe Gerard is right about romance. Or maybe Bri’s recipe just needs to be tweaked. Novelist Betsy St. Amant invites you to experience this sweet story of how love doesn’t always look the way we expect–and maybe that’s a good thing. (Contemporary Romance from Revell – A division of Baker Publishing Group)

Contemporary:

The Soft Whisper of Roses by Myra Johnson — Rebecca Townsend has only been married six months and already doubts Gary’s promise of “till death do us part.” Betrayed by her first husband, she’s trying her hardest to get it right this time. But when her new husband’s unresolved family issues resurface, she’s afraid she and her son will be abandoned once again. Just when Gary thought he’d found happiness with a woman who truly understood him, the death of his first wife blindsides him with unanticipated grief and guilt. After years of letting his career get in the way of being the husband and father he should’ve been, he must now live up to his new wife’s expectations while attempting to fit his resentful teenage daughter into the mix. But high-pressure careers don’t leave much time for stopping to smell the roses, and this family is almost out of time. A radical plan conceived by Gary’s ex-wife before her death risks tearing them all apart…or will it finally bring them together as the family God meant them to be? (Contemporary, Independently Published)

The Cedar Key by Stephenia H. McGee — Could the key to Casey’s future be hidden in someone else’s past? Casey Adams unexpectedly inherits an old Victorian house full of other people’s memories. Stuck in a quirky little Mississippi town, Casey’s hope for a fresh start died as soon she had to lay the grandmother she’d just met to rest. But Grandma Ida carried secrets beyond the grave. Before her death Ida carefully planned a trail of clues to help Casey unlock the Macintyre family secrets and finally explain why they abandoned her. But each of Ida’s letters will only come from Casey’s handsome—and often frustrating—new neighbor. As Casey pieces together the stories behind the objects filling her grandmother’s house, she embarks on a heart-stirring journey that rattles her foundations, ignites her faith, and leads her to a startling discovery that will reshape her future. But only if she can face the lies that have been slowly tearing her apart. (Contemporary, Independently Published)

The Sowing Season by Katie Powner — After he’s forced to sell the family farm he’s labored on his whole life, 63-year-old Gerrit Laninga doesn’t know what to do with himself. He sacrificed everything for the land–his time, his health, his family–with nothing to show for it but bitterness, regret, and two grown children who want nothing to do with him. Fifteen-year-old Rae Walters has growing doubts and fears about The Plan–the detailed blueprint for high school that will help her follow in her lawyer father’s footsteps. She’s always been committed to The Plan, but now that the pressure to succeed is building, what was supposed to unite her family in purpose, may end up tearing it apart. When their paths cross just as they each need a friend the most, Gerrit’s and Rae’s lives begin to change in unexpected ways. Can they discover together what really matters in life and learn it’s never too late for a second chance? (Contemporary from Bethany House)

Historical Romance:

Joy to the World: A Regency Novella Collection by Amanda BarrattCarolyn Miller, and Erica Vetsch — In Joy to the World, three popular romance authors come together to offer a heartwarming collection of holiday Regency romance. Based on lines from a beloved Christmas carol, these three novellas have depth, faith, and satisfying stories all packed into the perfect length for readers to curl up and take a brief break from their holiday busyness. “Far as the Curse Is Found” by Amanda Barrat “Heaven and Nature Sing by Carolyn Miller, and “The Wonders of His Love” by Erica Vetsch. (Historical Romance from Kregel Publications) 

The Lost Heir by Candee Fick — A foundling raised by the local vicar and his wife finds herself the ward of an earl and on a direct path to a London Season. If only her heart wasn’t still drawn to her childhood friend and their small Yorkshire village. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)  

Setting Two Hearts Free by Janet Grunst — Donald Duncan joined the Patriot cause for noble reasons, battling the British while enduring deprivation and hardship on every side. The war has changed him, and now the battle is internal. Returning home to Virginia is in sight where a new life and his Mary wait for him. Mary Stewart spends the war years with her family at Stewarts’ Green, helping them operate their ordinary. Daily, she prays for Donald’s safe return, eagerly waiting for him … until that day the evil side of war touches her. Two hearts changed by a war that dragged on for six years. Two hearts left hurting and struggling to find the love and trust they once knew. Is there a path for them to rekindle what was lost; Setting Two Hearts Free? (Historical Romance from Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas)

A Haven For Her Heart by Susan Anne Mason — Upon her release from a woman’s reformatory in 1941 Toronto, Olivia Rosetti wants nothing more than to forget the horrors of her time there and return to normal. But with her family unwilling to forgive and employers wary of hiring her, she quickly ends up desperate and homeless–until a chance encounter with well-to-do widow Ruth Bennington. The two discover they share a painful history and together decide to open a maternity home for troubled women. Greek widower Darius Reed is determined to protect his daughter from the prejudice that killed her mother and hopes to marry into a prominent Toronto family. But when his employer orders him to persuade Ruth Bennington to sell them her property, Darius soon becomes conflicted over his feelings about the home and his attraction to Olivia. Despite finding fulfilment in her work, Olivia must fight not only bitter memories and the community’s negative reaction to their mission, but also feelings for the man who is trying to close her home. Can love prove stronger than prejudice and societal pressures, or will past mistakes destroy her chance at true happiness? (Historical Romance from Bethany House [Baker])

A Doctor in the House by Linda Shenton Matchett — Emma O’Sullivan is one of the first female doctors to enlist after President Franklin Roosevelt signs the order allowing women in the Army and Navy medical corps. Within weeks, Emma is assigned to England to set up a convalescent hospital, and she leaves behind everything that is familiar. When the handsome widower of the requisitioned property claims she’s incompetent and tries to get her transferred, she must prove to her superiors she’s more than capable. But she’s soon drawn to the good-looking, grieving owner. Will she have to choose between her job and her heart? (Historical Romance from Shortwave Press)

The Love Note by Joanna Davidson Politano — Focused on a career in medicine and not on romance, Willa Duvall is thrown slightly off course during the summer of 1859 when she discovers a never-opened love letter in a crack of her old writing desk. Compelled to find the passionate soul who penned it and the person who never received it, she takes a job as a nurse at the seaside estate of Crestwicke Manor. Everyone at Crestwicke has feelings–mostly negative ones–about the man who wrote the letter, but he seems to have disappeared. With plenty of enticing clues but few answers, Willa’s search becomes even more complicated when she misplaces the letter and it passes from person to person in the house, each finding a thrilling or disheartening message in its words. (Historical Romance from Revell – A division of Baker Publishing Group)

Mystery:

Solid Ground by Danny & Wanda Pelfrey — Seven years between them, Kirby and Riley, nurtured by their pastor father and loving mother, experience almost ideal childhoods growing up in the Boston area. Then a season of misfortune culminated in the worse of all possible tragedies – the death of their beloved parents. Four years have passed. Kirby, having failed at marriage and pro-baseball, is now a Florida police detective. He finds himself in little Adairsville, Georgia along with Riley, his law school bound sister. They are there to settle their uncle’s massive estate. It is soon apparent that Uncle James’s death was no accident. But the worst of it is their names at the top of the suspect list. The siblings are embraced by spunky caretakers, Amos and Carol, whose love, wit, faith, and plain ole horse-sense bolster efforts to solve the murder and put Kirby’s life back on track. (Mystery from CrossLink Publishing)

Romantic Suspense:

Dangerous Deceptions by Lynnette BonnerLuana EhrlichLynne GentryElizabeth GoddardLisa Harris, Lisa Phillips, Jan Thompson, and D.L. Wood — Lives…and hearts…are on the line in eight brand-new Christian Romantic Suspense novels from the genre’s most explosive authors. “Lethal Outbreak” by Lisa Harris & Lynne Gentry, “Collision Course” by Elizabeth Goddard, “Glimmer in the Darkness” by Robin Patchen, “Expired Plot” by Lisa Phillips, “Ice” by Lynette Bonner, “Never a Traitor” by Jan Thompson, “Ben in Love” by Luana Ehrlich, and “Liar Like Her” by D. L. Wood. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

The Sound of Falling Leaves by Lisa Carter — After aspiring opera singer Tessa loses her voice in a fire, she needs both a place to heal and a way to keep music in her life. Amid the autumn splendor of this isolated Appalachian community where she retreats, Tessa uncovers an unnerving connection between a murder case and a long-ago disappearance. This leads Tessa and orchard caretaker, Zeke, on an intricate tale of danger, family intrigue, and romance. (Romantic Suspense from Kregel Publications)

Certain Threat by Kimberly Rose Johnson — Katrina White’s garage explodes and she fears someone is out to get her. Not long after Katrina overhears two people talking about robbing the bank where she works, her attached garage explodes. With the help of her neighbor, Frank Davis, she escapes the burning home after a storage shelf falls over, trapping her beneath it. The co-owner of Protection Inc. has one thing on his mind for the week of Christmas—rest and relaxation, but when his favorite neighbor needs his help he calls in his team. Unable to turn their backs on someone Frank clearly has feelings for the co-owners agree to help out Katrina.When things escalate, Frank is certain of two things—he cares a lot for Katrina and he can’t let anything happen to her. Join the team of Protection Inc. this Christmas where love is in the air even in the midst of danger. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Deadly Connection by Jennifer Pierce — Private Investigator, Reid Lucas, and his mentor, Joe Lockhart, haven’t spoken in years, but when Joe wants to meet in a small-town diner, Reid’s interest is piqued. Without explanation, Joe calls and tells Reid he has five minutes to get waitress, Quinn Matthews, and her son out of the diner before they’re kidnapped by the group of thugs about to walk through the diner’s front door. Quinn Matthews’ life is simple and safe, exactly how she likes it—until Reid Lucas walks into the diner. Now, she and her son are running for their lives, and she has no idea why. But when the father of her son shows up and dies saving them, she realizes they all have one deadly connection: Joe Lockhart. Now, she’ll have to trust the mysterious private investigator to not only save their lives but connect her past to her present so they can figure out who is after them. And why. As the danger escalates, unexpected feelings arise. Reid doesn’t believe he’s worthy of Quinn’s love–or God’s. And Quinn is too worried about having her heart broken again and the effect of having a new man in her son’s life. Can they let go of their preconceived notions of love and relationships, or are they doomed to just let go of each other? (Romantic Suspense from Anaiah Press)

Signs in the Dark by Susan Miura — ONE CAPTIVE Blindfolded, gagged and tied to a chair, 17-year-old Haylie Summers has only one goal: stay alive. Nothing about her abduction makes sense. Deaf since birth, she can’t hear her captors and can only guess why someone would take her. Is she about to be thrown into the dark abyss of human trafficking? Or was she kidnapped by the protestors who marched at the wildlife rescue center where she volunteers? Haylie fights the harsh reality that her capture was a direct result of Nathan’s unexpected text. “Need to talk. Can you meet me in 10 behind your garage?” It was the last thing she saw before getting dragged into a car. But it can’t be Nathan, with his ebony eyes and easygoing smile that crumbles the walls protecting her heart. No, it can’t be Nathan. Can it? ONE SUSPECT After a childhood full of disruptions, Peruvian-born Nathan Boliva likes to keep life simple. Haylie is not simple. She is beautiful. She is brilliant. And she is worth the risk of breaking out of his comfort zone. But days after asking Haylie on a date, Nathan finds himself targeted by the FBI for a crime he didn’t commit. Far worse, anything could be happening to Haylie as the search continues. Anything. ONE CRYPTIC CLUE “Meet us at sunset.” That’s what the men said. But is it a time…or a place? And were those words even spoken at all? (Romantic Suspense from Vinspire Publishing)

Book Spotlight: A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh by Carolyn Miller (via International Christian Fiction Writers)

Today we are spotlighting Carolyn Miller’s regency romance novel – A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh (Regency Brides: Daughters of Aynsley, Book 1).

International Christian Fiction Book Spotlight: A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh by Carolyn Miller

ACFW New Releases: September 2020

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Contemporary Romance:

Until I Met You by Tari Faris — Libby Kingsley dreams of a new life and a new library for the charming small town of Heritage, MI. Things get complicated when her big ideas threaten Austin Williams’ blueprints and his plan to leave town unattached. (Contemporary Romance from Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group)

A Love Redeemed by Lisa Jordan — They agreed to help each other out. No one mentioned falling in love. Back home after losing her job, Isabella Bradley plans to stay only long enough to save her father’s diner, but she can’t do it alone. Her childhood friend Tucker Holland has the perfect solution—he will renovate the diner if she’ll be a nanny for his twins. But as Isabella and Tucker reconnect, their arrangement begins to feel a lot less temporary… (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Contemporary:

The Edge of Belonging by Amanda Cox — When Ivy Rose returns to her hometown to oversee an estate sale, she soon discovers that her grandmother left behind more than trinkets and photo frames–she provided a path to the truth behind Ivy’s adoption. Shocked, Ivy seeks clues to her past, but a key piece to the mystery is missing. Twenty-four years earlier, Harvey James finds an abandoned newborn who gives him a sense of human connection for the first time in his life. His desire to care for the baby runs up against the stark fact that he is homeless. When he becomes entwined with two people seeking to help him find his way, Harvey knows he must keep the baby a secret or risk losing the only person he’s ever loved. In this dual-time story from debut novelist Amanda Cox, the truth–both the search for it and the desire to keep it from others–takes center stage as Ivy and Harvey grapple with love, loss, and letting go. (Contemporary from Revell [Baker])

Finding Wings by Deborah Raney — Taking care of her family is a blessing, but Britt thought there would be more to life–like falling in love . . . Being the youngest of three sisters isn’t always easy for Britt Chandler, especially when her older sisters have successful lives and hers is still on hold. She put everything aside to care for her dying mother, but now their mother is gone. Just as her life finally has a chance to blossom, her sister is ordered on bed rest during a difficult pregnancy, and it looks like God is again calling Britt to be a family caregiver–and nothing more. Rafe Stuart is unable to forgive himself for a childhood mistake that had grave repercussions. And no matter how many lives he saves now as a first responder, he can’t ever seem to do enough penance to free his soul from that decades-old tragedy. There definitely isn’t room in his wounded heart for love; it’s much too dangerous. When these two struggling souls encounter each other, sparks fly. But they’re both scared the fire that might result could destroy them–and the others around them. How can they begin to trust God to have the best for them and real purpose for their lives beyond what they’ve dreamed . . . or feared? (Contemporary from Kregel Publications)

Historical:

A Christmas Tale for Little Women by Linda Brooks Davis — Broadview is attired for Christmas. Adelaide Fitzgerald must provide two girls a Christmas like no other. Has she thought of everything? Has she accomplished enough? What would top off this Christmas in an extraordinary way? Addie’s answer lies just the other side of Rock Creek. What will it take for her to recognize it as the Christmas topper she’s been seeking? (Historical, Independently Published)

The Librarian of Boone’s Hollow by Kim Vogel Sawyer — During the Great Depression, city-dweller Addie Cowherd dreams of becoming a novelist and offering readers the escape that books had given her during her tragic childhood. When her father loses his job, she is forced to take the only employment she can find—delivering books on horseback to poor coal-mining families in the hills of Kentucky. But turning a new page will be nearly impossible in Boone’s Hollow, where residents are steeped in superstitions and deeply suspicious of outsiders. Even local Emmett Tharp feels the sting of rejection after returning to the tiny mountain hamlet as the first in his family to graduate college. And as the crippled economy leaves many men jobless, he fears his degree won’t be worth much in a place where most men either work the coal mine or run moonshine. As Addie also struggles to find her place, she’ll unearth the truth about a decades-old rivalry. But when someone sets out to sabotage the town’s library program, will the culprit chase Addie away or straight into the arms of the only person who can help her put a broken community back together? (Historical from Waterbrook/Multnomah [Random House])

Under the Tulip Tree by Michelle Shocklee — Sixteen-year-old Lorena Leland’s dreams of a rich and fulfilling life as a writer are dashed when the stock market crashes in 1929. Seven years into the Great Depression, Rena’s banker father has retreated into the bottle, her sister is married to a lazy charlatan and gambler, and Rena is an unemployed newspaper reporter. Eager for any writing job, Rena accepts a position interviewing former slaves for the Federal Writers’ Project. There, she meets Frankie Washington, a 101-year-old woman whose honest yet tragic past captivates Rena. As Frankie recounts her life as a slave, Rena is horrified to learn of all the older woman has endured—especially because Rena’s ancestors owned slaves. While Frankie’s story challenges Rena’s preconceptions about slavery, it also connects the two women whose lives are otherwise separated by age, race, and circumstances. But will this bond of respect, admiration, and friendship be broken by a revelation neither woman sees coming? (Historical from Tyndale House)

The Haunting at Bonaventure Circus by Jaime Jo Wright — In 1928, the Bonaventure Circus has become a refuge for many, but Pippa Ripley was rejected from its inner circle as a baby and is no longer content to leave the reason for that rejection unquestioned. When she receives mysterious messages from someone called the “Watchman,” she is determined to find him and the connection to her birth. As Pippa’s search leads her to a man seeking justice for his murdered sister and evidence that a serial killer has been haunting the circus train, she must decide if uncovering her roots is worth putting herself directly in the path of the killer. Decades later, an old circus train depot’s future hangs in the balance–it will either be torn down or preserved for historical importance, and its fate rests on Realtor Chandler Faulk’s shoulders. As she dives deep into the depot’s history, she’s also balancing a newly diagnosed disease and the pressures of single motherhood. When she discovers clues to unsolved murders of the past, Chandler is pulled into a story far darker and more haunting than even an abandoned train depot could portend. (Historical from Bethany House [Baker])

Historical Romance:

Enduring Dreams by Sandra Ardoin — Claire Kingsley once dared to assert herself into the male world of 1890s architecture. It cost her husband both his life and an heir. Now fear controls her choices and her dreams. When offered a chance to create another design, she fights against the pull, afraid of further disaster. But disturbing news ignites a fierce loyalty to her past love and a powerful attraction to a new one—an attraction she resists…for his sake. Mark Gregory’s first architectural project in town comes with the proviso that he works with a female. He balks, even though Claire stirs his heart like no other woman. Yet, with a loan payment looming, risking his business on someone of unknown talent invites failure, a word he’s struck from his vocabulary. When bigotry and Claire’s fears threaten an important commission, will she summon the courage to help Mark succeed, or will she destroy another man’s dream? (Historical Romance from Corner Room Books)

Light in the Mountain Sky by Misty M. Beller — Determined to prove her worth, Meksem fiercely fought to earn her place among the warriors in her Nez Perce camp. When her half-sister is captured by an enemy tribe, she refuses to trust the rescue to anyone else. But her new friends insist on joining her mission, and she battles between relief and frustration at their presence. Especially the white man who peers at her as if he can see through the face of the warrior she struggles so hard to maintain. Spaniard Adam Vargas thrives on adventure wherever his travels take him. He’s fallen in love with this Rocky Mountain wilderness, as well as the spotted horses the Nez Perce tribe raise. His fascination with this Indian maiden-turned-warrior catches him off guard though, including the way she seems to be fighting for more than her sister’s safe return. The journey proves more perilous than any of the group expects, and the secret Meksem hides becomes impossible to conceal. If they live through this mission, the life they knew will never be the same again. (Historical Romance, Independently Published)

A Joyful Christmas by Cynthia HickeyLiz JohnsonVickie McDonoughLiz TolsmaCarrie Turansky, and Erica Vetsch — A Christmas Collection to Warm the Heart Grab a warm cup of tea and watch as romance is kindled and joy is restored to broken lives during six bygone era Christmas celebrations. (Historical from Barbour Publishing)

Love’s Pure Light by Susanne DietzeShannon McNearDeborah Raney, and Janine Rosche — Be transported to unique time periods as you follow a treasured family nativity set through four generations of the Shepherd family. (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)

Palmer Girl by Dawn Klinge — When insurance tycoon, Cornelius Nordeman, is recruited to work for the Exposition Corporation, the New Yorker brings his family to live at the Palmer House Hotel, far away from any reminders of a recent tragedy. He’s hopeful this move will offer respite from his family’s grief. Elizabeth Nordeman, his daughter, has something to prove, which leads her to seek work as a florist at Marshall Field’s, Chicago’s finest department store. John Lewis knows something is different and intriguing about the new florist he hired. When his boss, Marshall Field, informs him that Elizabeth is the Nordeman heiress, his job suddenly becomes more complicated–especially when he finds himself falling for her. On the eve of the Columbian Exposition of 1893, Chicago prepares to prove that it’s a first-class city, and the brightest minds from around the country will plan the most spectacular fair the world has seen. The World’s Fair will bring change and innovation into a society bound tightly by class and tradition. Elizabeth’s heart longs to push against those boundaries, so what’s holding her back? (Historical Romance, Independently Published)

Love at First Flight by Linda Shenton Matchett — Evelyn Reid would rather fly than do anything else, so when war engulfs the U.S., she joins the Women’s Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron. One of the program’s top pilots, she is tapped for pursuit plane training…the dream of a lifetime until she discovers the instructor is her ex-fiancé, Jasper MacPherson. Collecting enough points to rotate stateside, fighter pilot Jasper MacPherson is assigned to teach the WAFS how to fly the army way. Bad enough to be training women, but things take a turn for the worse when his former fiancée shows up as one of his students. (Historical Romance from Shortwave Press)

Mystery:

The Sleuth’s Surprise by Kimberly Rose Johnson — Mary Daley has been the sheriff of Tipton County for more than two decades, but someone wants her job. When it seems circumstances can’t get more complicated, a murder happens on her watch. Had she been the intended victim? Deputy Chief Lyle Griffin only wants Mary to be happy, but when he asks her if she’d consider retiring, it sets off a string of events and emotions that muddy their friendship. Nancy Daley-Malone can’t believe anyone would run for sheriff against her mom. She is onboard to help run the best campaign Tipton County has ever seen until the sheriff’s opponent is murdered and Nancy’s husband joins the race. On top of that, it appears someone is out to kill her mother as well. Can Nancy, along with the sheriff’s department, find the murderer before it’s too late? Will Lyle and Mary be able to admit their feelings for one another or will the status quo remain? (Mystery from Mountain Brook Ink)

Romantic Suspense:

Airborne by DiAnn Mills — Heather Lawrence’s long-awaited vacation to Salzburg wasn’t supposed to go like this. Mere hours into the transatlantic flight, the Houston FBI agent is awakened when passengers begin exhibiting horrific symptoms of an unknown infection. As the virus quickly spreads and dozens of passengers fall ill, Heather fears she’s witnessing an epidemic similar to ones her estranged husband studies for a living—but this airborne contagion may have been deliberately released. While Heather remains quarantined with other survivors, she works with her FBI colleagues to identify the person behind this attack. The prime suspect? Dr. Chad Lawrence, an expert in his field . . . and Heather’s husband. The Lawrences’ marriage has been on the rocks since Chad announced his career took precedence over his wife and future family and moved out. As more victims fall prey days after the initial outbreak, time’s running out to hunt down the killer, one who may be closer to the victims than anyone ever expected. (Romantic Suspense from Tyndale House)

Speculative Fiction:

Forsaken Island by Sharon Hinck — The people of Meriel have long believed their island world floats alone in the vast ocean universe, so they are astonished when another island drifts into view. With resources becoming scarce, Carya and Brantley quickly volunteer to search the new land for supplies. After navigating a barrier of menacing trees, the pair encounter a culture of perpetually happy people who readily share their talents and their possessions. But all is not what it seems. At the core of the island is a horror that threatens everyone, including Brantley and Carya. Freeing the villagers of the bondage they’ve chosen may cost Carya and Brantley more than they could have imagined. Even if the two succeed, they’ll have to find a way to return to Meriel quickly … or be cut off from their home forever. (Speculative from Enclave Publishing)

When a spelling mistake is not a mistake… plus #Giveaway via Inspy Romance blog

I’m blogging at Inspy Romance today and giving away a $10 Amazon US Gift Card.

A few weeks ago my young adult son finished reading a book by one of his favorite authors. I asked him what he thought of the book. He said it was a great story but…he was shocked to find a spelling mistake in the book!

I was intrigued by my son’s comment because I’ve enjoyed reading books by this award winning author who is an excellent writer.

[Read more via link below at Inspy Romance blog]

When a spelling mistake is not a mistake… plus #Giveaway

Book Spotlight: The Silk Merchant of Sychar by Cindy Williams (via International Christian Fiction Writers)

Today we are spotlighting Cindy Williams’ Biblical fiction novel – The Silk Merchant of Sychar. Congratulations to Cindy on her book being a finalist in the Romantic Elements category of the Romance Writers of Australia Ruby Award!

International Christian Fiction Book Spotlight: The Silk Merchant of Sychar by Cindy Williams

Introducing the 2020 Back to School Giveaway! (via Inspy Romance)

Check out the fabulous Back to School Giveaway at the Inspy Romance blog!

12 book bundles including:

5 x paperback bundles

4 x ebook bundles

2 x international paperback bundles (for readers who have a mailing address outside USA) 

PLUS – an amazing GRAND PRIZE with ‘A Cozy Evening In’ themed bundle of books, tea, candles and other treats to create a fun and relaxing reading experience!

*~*~*

It’s time! Even though the back to school season doesn’t look like it usually does, here at InspyRomance we are still having our regularly scheduled Back to School Giveaway … [Read more via link below]

Introducing the 2020 Back to School Giveaway!