“The Captain’s Daughter” by Jennifer Delamere

Disclosure Pic

When a series of circumstances beyond her control leave Rosalyn Bernay alone and penniless in London, she chances upon a job backstage at a theater that is presenting the most popular show in London. A talented musician and singer, she feels immediately at home and soon becomes enthralled with the idea of pursuing a career on the stage.

A hand injury during a skirmish in India has forced Nate Moran out of the army until he recovers. Filling his time at a stable of horses for hire in London, he has also spent the past two months working nights as a stagehand, filling in for his injured brother. Although he’s glad he can help his family through a tough time, he is counting the days until he can rejoin his regiment. London holds bitter memories for him that he is anxious to escape. But then he meets the beautiful woman who has found a new lease on life in the very place Nate can’t wait to leave behind.

The Captain's Daughter

The Captain’s Daughter is the perfect story for fans of mysteries and musicals!  With an unusual combination of Gilbert and Sullivan, London theater life, and villains on every corner, this story is unexpectedly fun.

Delamere weaves threads of mystery and history throughout the story.  There’s more to Rosalyn’s background than we know, and I have a feeling that there’s more to the story that will be revealed in later books.  I love the way that her past was affecting her present, and I’ll be anxious to see what it does to her future.

The theater plays an enormous role in this book – a much bigger one than I expected.  That’s not really my thing, but I enjoyed the way that Delamere used the interactions off stage to add spiritual depth and lessons to the story.

The Captain’s Daughter is a great summer read.  With loads of British history, scoundrels, and lessons to learn, you should add it to your reading list.

Click here to read other reviews in this bloggy hop or here to purchase your own copy now.

About the author:
Jennifer Delamere’s debut Victorian romance, “An Heiress at Heart,” was a 2013 RITA award finalist in the inspirational category. Her follow-up novel, “A Lady Most Lovely,” received a starred review from “Publishers Weekly” and the Maggie Award for Excellence from Georgia Romance Writers. Jennifer earned a BA in English from McGill University in Montreal, where she became fluent in French and developed an abiding passion for winter sports. She’s been an editor of nonfiction and educational materials for nearly two decades, and lives in North Carolina with her husband.
Find out more about Jennifer at jenniferdelamere.com.
Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Find us on Pinterest

I received a free copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity.  All opinions are my own.

“A Matter of Trust” by Susan May Warren

Disclosure Pic

Champion backcountry snowboarder Gage Watson has left the limelight behind after the death of one of his fans. After being sued for negligence and stripped of his sponsorships, he’s remade his life as a ski patrol in Montana’s rugged mountains, as well as serving on the PEAK Rescue team. But he can’t seem to find his footing–or forget the woman he loved, who betrayed him.

Senator and former attorney Ella Blair spends much of her time in the limelight as the second-youngest senator in the country. But she has a secret–one that cost Gage his career. More than anything, she wants to atone for her betrayal of him in the courtroom and find a way to help him put his career back on track.

When Ella’s brother goes missing on one of Glacier National Park’s most dangerous peaks, Gage and his team are called in for the rescue. But Gage isn’t so sure he wants to help the woman who destroyed his life. More, when she insists on joining the search, he’ll have to keep her safe while finding her reckless brother, a recipe for disaster when a snowstorm hits the mountain.

But old sparks relight as they search for the missing snowboarder–and suddenly, they are faced with emotions neither can deny. But when Ella’s secret is revealed, can they learn to trust each other–even when disaster happens again?

Susan May Warren

A Matter of Trust takes you on a downhill ride through danger, forgiveness, and love – and isn’t that the oddest combination?

Warren totally makes it work, though.  Gage’s skiing prowess makes him read like a superstar, which feels a bit unrealistic, and yet their humbleness makes them feel like the kids next door.  Ella’s skill and the way that the two are able to combat danger together makes it feel as if you’re right there with them.

It’s that pairing that I love about Warren’s writing, and she’s pulled it off in every book of hers (that I’ve read – which is a lot).  Her characters all have high-action, high danger careers, and Warren uses those jobs as vehicles for deep spiritual lessons. 

Ella and Gage both need to make peace with their pasts, and the stories of how they do so are complicated.  Warren weaves the book previous in the series with this one and seamlessly sets up the next book, as well.  I love how wide the cast of characters are, and how each character feels like a friend by the end of the book.

While I would never want to take on a huge mountain on skis personally, I thoroughly enjoy reading about it.  If you, too, like reading action-packed adventure stories, move A Matter of Trust to the top of your summer reading list.

I received a free copy of A Matter of Trust by Susan May Warren.  All opinions are my own.

“Fly Away” by Lynn Austin

Disclosure Pic

Wilhelmina Brewster has been a college music professor for 41 years, devoting her life to her career and never marrying. Now, after her forced retirement at age 65, she is mourning her loss and searching for something to fill the empty hours. Widower Mike Dolan is a pilot and World War II veteran who has always lived life to the fullest. When medical tests confirm that his cancer has returned, he makes plans to take a final flight in his airplane rather than become a burden to his family. Wilhelmina accidentally learns of Mike’s final plans, and when she discovers that he isn’t a believer, she knows it’s her Christian duty to talk with him about her faith. But although she has been a lifelong Christian, she feels totally inadequate for the task of witnessing to an unbeliever.
Mike and Wilhelmina are two very different people—one figuring out how to live, the other how to die. Yet they will find themselves journeying together as they search for answers to life, loss and faith in God.

Fly Away

Fly Away is a poignant tale about the circle of life.  We spend most of our days spinning our wheels, caught up in ‘stuff’ that has no eternal significance, and most of us are too afraid to be real, even with our friends. 

Austin calls us on it.  Mike doesn’t want to waste a moment of his life, but Wilhemina doesn’t know how to do anything else.  Austin explores this dichotomy while probing Wilhemina’s fears.  I admire Mike’s strengths and the way that they complement each other.  They made a uniquely suited couple, if only for a few months.

So death and eternal life are deep topics, and that’s exactly what Austin writes – a book with the spiritual depth of the Mariana Trench.  There are life lessons and spiritual lessons to be learned here, and yet it’s not a depressing book.  I found myself cheering on both main characters, and while I was sad for Mike, Austin keeps the mood from becoming completely glum.  Instead, it’s quite provocative as the reader will identify with both Mike and Wilhemina in turn.

Fly Away isn’t a fluffy beach read – but it is an enjoyable one, and one you’ll be very glad to read.

I received a free copy of this book from the author.  All opinions are my own.

“The Road to Paradise” by Karen Barnett

Disclosure Pic

An ideal sanctuary and a dream come true–that’s what Margaret Lane feels as she takes in God’s gorgeous handiwork in Mount Rainier National Park. It’s 1927 and the National Park Service is in its youth when Margie, an avid naturalist, lands a coveted position alongside the park rangers living and working in the unrivaled splendor of Mount Rainier’s long shadow.
But Chief Ranger Ford Brayden is still haunted by his father’s death on the mountain, and the ranger takes his work managing the park and its crowd of visitors seriously. The job of watching over an idealistic senator’s daughter with few practical survival skills seems a waste of resources.
When Margie’s former fiancé sets his mind on developing the Paradise Inn and its surroundings into a tourist playground, the plans might put more than the park’s pristine beauty in danger. What will Margie and Ford sacrifice to preserve the splendor and simplicity of the wilderness they both love?
Karen Barnett’s vintage national parks novels bring to vivid life President Theodore Roosevelt’s vision for protected lands, when he wrote in Outdoor Pastimes of an American Hunter: “There can be nothing in the world more beautiful than the Yosemite, the groves of the giant sequoias and redwoods, the Canyon of the Colorado, the Canyon of the Yellowstone, the Three Tetons; and our people should see to it that they are preserved for their children and their children’s children forever, with their majestic beauty all unmarred.”

The Road to Paradise

Karen Barnett has written a fantastic tale of nature conservation, spiritual lessons, and mystery!  I love the way that she has combined all of these to make a rollicking, adventure story.

One of the things that stands out to me most about The Road to Paradise is the way that Margie appreciates the plants and animals found around Mt. Rainier.  She often quotes the Bible, poetry, or famous writers as inspiration strikes, and while she comes off as a bit quirky at first, her sincerity shines through, as does Barnett’s love for God’s creation.  I absolutely love that aspect of this book, and I’ve shared it with several people already.  (In fact, I can’t wait to use this as a book club pick when my girls are a bit older!)

Margie also makes a great female lead.  She’s brave, gutsy, and she knows what’s important.  She’s not afraid to follow her dreams, and she’s willing to chase them, even when it takes her into unpopular territory.  I love the way that Barnett portrays her – as a strong woman who can be romantic and love science, too. 

Margie isn’t always wise in the ways of the world, but she does try to be smart in love.  Maybe she doesn’t always make the best choices, but if she did, what would Barnett write about?  Instead, she keeps attempting to make her next choice better than the one before it, and I love that about her.

The setting of this book caught me off guard.  I expected to read about cozy cabins and beautiful scenery, but instead Barnett really makes Mt. Rainier National Park come alive.  She wrote in park dangers, conservancy efforts, flora and fauna, as well as unique park details, making them major parts of the story.  The mountain wasn’t just there in the background, but it was almost like another character, and I enjoyed this aspect very much.

Barnett uses foreshadowing throughout the book, but it’s so subtle and well-written that I rarely picked up on it until the later event was revealed.  I admire the skill with which she placed those clues throughout the story!

The Road to Paradise is a fantastic summer read.  It’s lighthearted enough to be fun poolside and involves enough nature to make you want to go exploring.  There’s more than enough spiritual depth to keep you pondering Margie’s lessons long after you turn the last page, and you won’t want to leave Margie and Nate when the book finally ends.  Be sure to find a copy ASAP – you won’t want to miss The Road to Paradise.

I received a free copy of The Road to Paradise from Karen Barnett.  All opinions are my own.

“The Great Chattanooga Bicycle Race” by Mike H. Mizrahi

Disclosure Pic

Chattanooga society is turned upside down as a young woman has the audacity to ride a bicycle-in bloomers!
It’s 1895. Anna Gaines, 19, struggles to conquer her insecurities after a horrible fall years ago from her beloved horse, Longstreet. On a visit with her aunt in Brooklyn, she’s drawn to the new pastime of bicycling. But back at home, cycling is a scandalous sport for a proper lady. Southern women did not engage in activities meant for men.
Anna has her eye on Peter Sawyer, president of the Cycling Club. As community outrage grows, an unexpected turn of events pits Anna against Peter in a race between the sexes.
Will Anna prove that women deserve the same right as men to ride “the wheel?” Will she choose to live a quiet, traditional life of a housewife and mother? Or will she pursue college and become one of the “new women” emerging into the twentieth century on the seat of a bicycle? What will become of the spark between Anna and Peter?
Faith, patience, and courage help Anna to become the person she was meant to be.
Mizrahi writes a new kind of historical fiction in The Great Chattanooga Bicycle Race.  With subplots involving Civil War landmark preservation, mental illness, grief, marital relationships, and race relations, there’s a lot happening in this book – and that doesn’t even touch the main themes of women riding bicycles and wearing bloomers.
It’s obvious that Mizrahi did his homework in the way that he blended all of these themes seamlessly.  The setting is detailed and plays a large role in the story.  I love the way that Mizrahi made the bicycle the pivotal point of the story, using it to show both historical and romantic information and spiritual transformation throughout the book.
I really enjoyed the main cast of characters.  Anna, Peter, Emma, and Rose were all realistic-sounding people I’d love to befriend.  The villains, of course, came across as appropriately evil, and it was easy to tell the difference.
While Anna grew and matured throughout the story in pleasing ways, I didn’t always enjoy those changes as they happened.  Not because I didn’t want them to, but because they seemed to be sudden.  It almost felt too abrupt, as if there were partial scenes that got cut in the editing process.  Anna sometimes reversed her feelings or decisions seemingly without justification, and I would have liked to know why she was making a change.  I think it would have added much to the story.
I also found myself frequently wanting to yell into the pages, “Just talk already!”  While I enjoyed reading about Anna’s romantic relationships, I often felt that so much of the confusion could be cleared up if they would only communicate.  I realize that this problem was, in part, a sign of the times, but in this age of emails and texts, the many mix-ups are frustrating to me.  In that regard, I much prefer living in 2017!
The Great Chattanooga Bicycle Race is an exciting historical fiction about a pivotal time in history.  If romantic stories, coming-of-age tales, or women’s rights hold any interest for you, give it a try.
Click here to read other reviews on this bloggy hop or here to purchase your own copy now.

About the author:
Mike Mizrahi has a master’s degree in public relations, advertising and applied communication from Boston University. After a career in corporate public affairs, he retired to pursue a deep passion: writing.
Mizrahi and his wife, Karen, led a mission trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo four years ago and were so moved by the experience, Mizrahi wrote his first novel, which he hopes will one day be published. The Great Chattanooga Bicycle Race is his debut published work.
Mizrahi loves reading and writing stories about “sozo,” which means to be rescued in Greek. He and Karen are very active in their church and community and love to hike, travel and go the movies together. The Mizrahis live in Woodland Hills, California, where they raised their children who are now adults.
Learn more about The Great Chattanooga Bicycle Race and Mike H. Mizrahi at www.mikehmizrahi.com or on Facebook (AuthorMikeMizrahi) and Twitter (@MikeHMiz). 
I received a free copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity.  All opinions are my own.

“Treasured Grace” by Tracie Peterson

Disclosure Pic

Grace Martindale has known more than her share of hardship. After her parents died, raising her two younger sisters became her responsibility. A hasty marriage to a minister who is heading to the untamed West seemed like an opportunity for a fresh start, but a cholera outbreak along the wagon trail has left Grace a widow in a very precarious position.

Having learned natural remedies and midwifery from her mother, Grace seeks an opportunity to use her skills for the benefit of others. So when she and her sisters arrive at the Whitman mission in “Oregon Country,” she decides to stay rather than push on.

With the help of Alex Armistead, a French-American fur trapper, Grace begins to provide care for her neighbors, including some of the native populace. But not everyone welcomes her skills–or her presence–and soon Grace finds herself and those she loves in more danger than she imagined possible.

Tracie Peterson

Wow.  That’s the best way to describe Peterson’s hard-hitting new historical Western.

This is not your run-of-the-mill Oregon Trail novel.  In no way does Peterson romanticize the difficulties of the trail or of life for single women during the 1840s.  I love that she keeps history real during her stories, but she takes it many steps further during this one.

Death is not unknown on the Trail or in the West, but Peterson doesn’t hesitate to include both death and the violence of the time.  It’s actually so clearly depicted that I’m glad I didn’t share this book with My Big Helper before reading it, as I think she needs a few more years before tackling this type of hardcore violence.

It’s not gratuitous violence, though.  The scenes included put the story into perspective and added a layer of depth and wisdom to Treasured Grace that could not exist otherwise.  Peterson’s attention to historical detail is amazing, and it’s obvious that she’s both a lover of the West and an admirer of the fierce, independent spirit which was necessary to survive.

I found Grace’s knowledge of herbs and natural medicine fascinating.  As someone who is only beginning to learn about these things, I love that she was written as an expert, and I would have loved to read more details about her remedies.  Her conflicts with Dr. Whitman and other educated, trained doctors made a fascinating subplot.

Treasured Grace is a heartbreakingly raw tale of survival and love.  If you’re a fan of historical fiction, put it on your TBR pile immediately.

I received a free copy of Treasured Grace from Bethany House Publishers.  All opinions are my own.


Becky Wade’s ‘True to You’ Prize Pack and $100 Giveaway

Do opposites really attract? John and Nora might just be the perfect match. Find out in True to You, book one in Becky Wade’s new series! Genealogist and historical village owner Nora Bradford has decided that burying her nose in her work and her books is far safer than romance in the here and now. Former Navy SEAL and Medal of Honor recipient John Lawson is a modern-day man, usually 100 percent focused on the present. But when he’s diagnosed with an inherited condition, he’s forced to dig into the secrets of his past and his adoption as an infant, enlisting Nora to help him uncover the identity of his birth mother. Finding the answers they’re seeking will test the limits of their identity, their faith, and their devotion to one another.

Celebrate the launch of Becky Wade’s new series by entering to win a fabulous prize pack and $100 cash card!


One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A copy of True to You
  • A $100 Visa cash card
  • A prize pack hand-picked by Becky

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on May 30. The winner will be announced May 31 on the Litfuse blog.

“True to You” by Becky Wade

Disclosure Pic

After a devastating heartbreak three years ago, genealogist and historical village owner Nora Bradford has decided that burying her nose in her work and her books is far safer than romance in the here and now.

Unlike Nora, former Navy SEAL and Medal of Honor recipient John Lawson is a modern-day man, usually 100 percent focused on the present. But when he’s diagnosed with an inherited condition, he’s forced to dig into the secrets of his past and his adoption as an infant, enlisting Nora to help him uncover the identity of his birth mother.

The more time they spend together, the more this pair of opposites suspects they just might be a perfect match. However, John’s already dating someone and Nora’s not sure she’s ready to trade her crushes on fictional heroes for the risks of a real relationship. Finding the answers they’re seeking will test the limits of their identity, their faith, and their devotion to one another.

Becky Wade

Wow!  I Wade’s newest series starts off with a roller coaster of romance and emotion!  I love a sweet feel-good romance, and I thought that’s what True to You was, but it’s so, so much more.

It starts off that way, though.  Although I’ve loved her other books and was fascinated with the premise of this one, I was a bit skeptical after I started to read.  A few of the names sounded a bit cheesy, and it began like a straightforward love story.

It’s not, though.  It really is so much more

Wade layers the story with piece after piece of well-timed drama.  It’s so much more than the premise implies – genealogist sparking with a hunky former SEAL.  They both have full and complete backstories that, while a bit fantastic, play totally and completely into their present and affect any possible future they might have together.  The timing of events is impeccable, as one complication rolls right into another, until by the end the story is so deep and theological that you’ll need to surface for air.

I do enjoy a good romantic story, but I prefer for them to have at least one additional angle to them, for the very reason that Nora realizes in this book:  fictional men are perfect, and real ones are not.  When we read sweet stories of romantic, hunky, perfect men, we can start to expect to find our own Adolphus in real life, and that won’t ever happen.  Nobody’s perfect.

Wade makes that case perfectly through Nora in True to You without doing in her own book – partly because this isn’t just a romance, but partly because, in un-romance-book style, it’s full of theological revelations to back all that up.  A reader will get a whole sermon in fun, fictional style without ever realizing it.  The depth that Wade writes into this story was very unexpected, and yet it’s what makes the book so completely perfect:  it has the fun of a traditional romance and the depth of a novel.  It’s the best of both worlds!

The problems Nora and John face are much, much deeper than the usual does he like me?, and while that depth is weighty, Nora’s quirky sisters add fun to every problem.  Not that they take away from the seriousness of it, but their relationships and personalities lend new angles and subtle humor to each interaction with their sister, lightening the mood and keeping the reader from crying into her tea alongside Nora.

Without Willow and Britt, and even their Eyore-ish Grandmother, that last bit could happen.  Wade writes with the experience, professionalism, and drama of Karen Kingsbury, and who can read any of her stories without needing a full box of tissues?  Wade hits just the right notes of love, drama, and faith in True to You, however – making it a definite winner.  I can’t wait to revisit the Bradford sisters in the sequel.

Click here to read other books in this bloggy hop or here to purchase your own copy now.

About the author:
Becky Wade is a California native who attended Baylor University, met and married a Texan, and settled in Dallas.  She published historical romances for the general market before putting her career on hold for several years to care for her three children.  When God called her back to writing, Becky knew He meant for her to turn her attention to Christian fiction.  She loves writing funny, modern, and inspirational contemporary romance!  She’s the Carol Award, INSPY Award, and Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award winning author of My Stubborn Heart, the Porter Family series, and the Bradford Sisters Romance series.
Visit our blog Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Find us on PinterestView on Instagram
I received a free copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity.  All opinions are my own.

Suggested Title: Cynthia Ruchti’s ‘A Fragile Hope’ Blog Tour and Giveaway

When your life’s work revolves around repairing other people’s marriages, what happens when your own marriage begins to fall apart? Find out what happens to Josiah Chamberlain in Cynthia Ruchti’s new book, A Fragile Hope. Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what’s left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?

Celebrate the release of A Fragile Hope by entering to win Cynthia’s Sign of Hope Giveaway!


One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on May 3. The winner will be announced May 4 on the Litfuse blog.

“A Fragile Hope” by Cynthia Ruchti

Cynthia Ruchti

Hope grows when seeds are planted-even in the muddy middle of life.
Josiah Chamberlain’s life’s work revolves around repairing other people’s marriages. When his own is threatened by his wife’s unexplained distance, and then threatened further when she’s unexpectedly plunged into an unending fog, Josiah finds his expertise, quick wit and clever quips are no match for a relationship that is clearly broken.
Feeling betrayed, confused, and ill-equipped for a crisis this crippling, he reexamines everything he knows about the fragility of hope and the strength of his faith and love. Love seems to have failed him. Will what’s left of his faith fail him, too? Or will it be the one thing that holds him together and sears through the impenetrable wall that separates them?
 Ruchti has written a sweetly dramatic story of forgiveness and love in her newest novel A Fragile Hope.  Josiah reads as fully realistic and completely clueless.  This combination works well as a vehicle for exploring the roles that we play in marriage.
Ruchti shares important insights about marriage throughout the story, but you’ll never feel preached at or taught.  Instead, I read the book in a single afternoon, never once picking up my phone or putting down the book – I read it straight through.  I was completely caught up in Josiah’s story:  his care of his wife, the trauma he endured as he struggled to figure out his wife’s actions, and the pain he felt as he reconciled those with the role he played in their marriage.  I thoroughly enjoyed these lessons, and Josiah’s insights would provide provocative discussions.
I can’t imagine writing an entire story in which one of the main character is unable to communicate, but Ruchti not only did so, but she knocked it out of the park. A Fragile Hope is quietly introspective.  It’s a journey through the lowest depths of marriage and the faith required to rebuilt it, and it’s one everyone should take along with Josiah.

About the author:
Cynthia Ruchti tells stories hemmed in hope through her novels, novellas, nonfiction books, articles and devotionals, drawing from 33 years of on-air radio ministry. Ruchti has written more than 20 award-winning novels, novellas, nonfiction books and devotionals. Her books have received numerous awards and nominations, including the RT Reviewers’ Choice, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year nominations, two Selah Awards, Christian Retailing’s BEST, was an ACFW Carol Award finalist and a Christy finalist, among other honors. Her latest release is the novel A Fragile Hope.
One of Ruchti’s greatest joys is helping other writers grow in their craft. To that end, she has served as worship and devotions staff and faculty for the Write-to-Publish conference and teaches at other writers’ conferences across the country and internationally as opportunities arise. She also serves as the professional relations liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers.
Ruchti speaks frequently for women’s groups and serves on her church’s worship team. She and her husband live in the heart of Wisconsin, not far from their three children and five grandchildren.
Find out more about Cynthia at http://www.cynthiaruchti.com.
I received a free copy of this book from LitFuse Publicity.  All opinions are my own.

A Fragile Hope Cynthia Ruchti