That’s (Not Exactly) Amore by Tracey Bateman – CFBA

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing

That’s (Not Exactly) Amore

FaithWords (August 14, 2008)
by

Tracey Bateman

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Tracey Bateman published her first novel in 2000 and has been busy ever since. There are two other books in the Drama Queen Series, Catch A Rising Star (#1) and You Had Me At Goodbye (#2)

She learned to write by writing, and improved by listening to critique partners and editors. She has sold over 30 books in six years.
She became a member of American Christian Fiction Writers in the early months of its inception in 2000 and served as president for a year.

Tracey loves Sci-fi, Lifetime movies, and Days of Our Lives (this is out of a 21 year habit of watching, rather than enjoyment of current storylines.

She has been married to her husband Rusty for 18 years, has four kids, and lives in Lebanon, Missouri.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

When Laini Sullivan lands a job designing Nick Pantalone’s coffee shop, there are two problems: one, Nick’s nephew Joe hates all of her ideas and two, Laini has to admit he’s right–she’s a disaster at design. Still, she can’t risk losing the job. To compromise, Joe brings in help on the project, while Laini continues to bake the goodies that keep his customers lining up.
Their relationship is moving along, so when new guy Officer Mark Hall implies that Joe’s family is tied to the mob, Laini doesn’t want to believe it. But things spin out of control when she meets the family, including “the uncles,” who seem to confirm Mark’s suspicions. To make things worse, Nana Pantalone makes it clear Laini isn’t the kind of girl she has in mind for her grandson. Laini’s not sure if she should give Joe the benefit of the doubt or just set her sites on Mark and fuhgetaboutit.

“Tracey draws us into the world of family and friendship with a few surprising twists along the way Bravo!”
~RACHEL HAUCK, author of Diva NashVegas and Sweet Caroline

If you would like to read the first chapter of That’s (Not Exactly) Amore, go HERE

The Jewel of Gresham Green by Lawana Blackwell – CFBA

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing

The Jewel of Gresham Green

(Bethany House – August 1, 2008)
by

Lawana Blackwell

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

A full-time author, Lawana Blackwell’s books include her beloved Gresham Chronicles and Tales of London series.

“I had told myself long ago that three books in a series are enough for my attention span, and so after The Dowry of Miss Lydia Clark, I devoted myself to the trio of books in the Tales of London series, then wrote A Table By the Window, my contemporary novel. All along, I received letters from readers asking me to continue the Gresham series. Many, many wrote that the dairying village of Gresham and its people sent them back to a more peaceful time in the midst of their busy days.

“Prayerfully, I decided to return to Gresham, setting the story fifteen years after Julia Hollis and her children first left London for abandoned coaching inn which became Larkspur Inn. I believe readers would like to see how the children—Philip, Aleda and Grace, Elizabeth and Laurel—turn out as adults. But I like to inject fresh faces into every book, hence Jewel Libby and her daughter Becky find Gresham a haven from a bad man. Writing the book was like coming home, visiting old friends.”

Blackwell lives in Louisiana with her husband, Buddy, a supervisor at an oil refinery. They are empty nesters who love to visit their three grown sons, Joseph, Matthew, and Andrew, and three lovely daughters-in-law, Kristine, Penny and Heather, granddaughter Madelyn, and grandson Chandler.

Her other interests include visiting her parents and siblings in Mississippi, vegetarian cooking, and naturally, reading.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

To protect her precious daughter from the danger nipping at their heels, Jewel Libby must flee the only home she’s ever known. Caring friends direct her to the vicarage in the peaceful dairy village of Gresham, but she arrives there to find Vicar Andrew Phelps and his wife immersed in troubles of their own.

The children of Vicar Andrew Phelps and Julia Hollis from the popular Gresham Chronicles series have grown up and are dealing with their own challenges. Philip Hollis, now a successful London surgeon, has a controlling wife who resents his close family ties.

Aleda Hollis lives in a cottage on the outskirts of Gresham, where she enjoys her privacy and a writing career. When Andrew becomes ill and in need of Philip’s skills, and Aleda’s quest for privacy unwittingly advances an evil man’s schemes, it’s Jewel Libby, a newcomer to Gresham, who becomes an unexpected support and source of strength to the family. An unlikely romance adds to the intrigue of this jewel in their midst.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Jewel of Gresham Green, go HERE

All Through the Night by Davis Bunn – CFBA

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing

All Through The Night

(Bethany House – July 1, 2008)
by

Davis Bunn

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Davis Bunn is an internationally-acclaimed author who has sold more than six million books in fifteen languages. His audiences spans reading genres from high drama and action thrillers to heartwarming relationship stories, in both contemporary and historical settings.

Honored with three Christy Awards for excellence in historical and suspense fiction, his bestsellers include My Soul To Keep, and Full Circle . A sought-after lecturer in the art of writing, Bunn was named Novelist in Residence at Regent’s Park College, Oxford University.

He and his wife, Isabella, make their home in Florida for some of each year, and spend the rest near Oxford, England, where they each teach and write.

ABOUT THE BOOK

A loner, trying to forget. A community–and a woman–who need for him to remember…
Broken relationships and unfulfilled promises scatter themselves across Wayne’s past like burned-out craters. His background in military special-ops is something he’s trying to forget. But when he gets himself sweet-talked into helping a quirky group of seniors who’ve been scammed, he discovers it will take a lot more than muscle and nerve. Breach a conman’s high-security estate to recover stolen money? No problem. Become part of community? Love again? Not on your life.

A lawyer with her own painful past is intrigued by Wayne and asks him to take on another unusual case–Tatanya’s wealthy employer believes he’s been visited by…an angel? Did a messenger from God in a pinstripe suit truly bring a divine warning, or is this merely another cruel hoax? Tatanya is willing to trust Wayne with her boss’s life, but she’s not sure she’s ready to trust him with her own wounded heart.

With a financial analyst’s skills and a warrior’s tenacity, Wayne races to unmask dangerous forces hiding behind a corporate veil. But he will need all his resources–and then some–against an unseen enemy bent on destroying his fragile bid for a second chance at life…and love.

All he wanted was to put his past behind him. But now it’s the only thing that will save them…

If you would like to read the first chapter of All Through The Night, go HERE

MY REVIEW:

I have enjoyed the books of Davis Bunn for many years and All Through The Night was no exception.  I loved his quirky cast of unlikely heroes and the development of their relationships with each other. I found All Through The Night to be satisfyingly suspenseful yet interlaced with humor and spiritual depth.

All Through The Night documents Wayne’s transformation from a skeptical loner to an integral part of the senior community as he works with them to recover their stolen money. As he interacts with the other characters, his life and theirs are changed forever. All Through The Night is a tale of love, forgiveness, fellowship, and redemption. I highly recommend it.

Dogwood by Chris Fabry – CFBA

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing

Dogwood

(Tyndale House Publishers – July 9, 2008)
by

Chris Fabry

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Chris Fabry has a variety of titles to his credit including At the Corner of Mundane and Grace, Spiritually Correct Bedtime Stories, Away with the Manger, The H.I.M. Book, and The 77 Habits of Highly Effective Christians. His latest work is a collaboration with Jerry B. Jenkins and Dr. Tim LaHaye.

Chris has recently completed the final book in the Left Behind The Kids series, available Fall 2004. Readers of all ages have followed the lives of Judd, Vicki, Lionel, and the others. Now read how their exciting stories culminate in book 40 of this beloved series. Dogwood is his first adult fiction.

Chris and his wife, Andrea, are the parents of nine children and make their home in Colorado. Chris has worked in Christian radio and now enjoys narrating audio books as well as writing. He believes his career as a husband and father is the real evidence of God’s grace in his life.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

In the small town of Dogwood, West Virginia, Karin has buried her shattered dreams by settling for a faithful husband whose emotional distance from her deep passions and conflicts leaves her isolated. Loaded with guilt, she tries to raise three small children and “do life” the best she can.

Will returns to Dogwood intent on pursuing the only woman he has ever loved–only to find there is far more standing in his way than lost years in prison. The secrets of Will and Karin’s past begin to emerge through Danny Boyd, a young boy who wishes he hadn’t survived the tragedy that knit those two together as well as tore them apart.

The trigger that will lay their pain bare and force them to face it rather than flee is the unlikely figure of Ruthie Bowles, a withered, wiry old woman who leads Karin so deep into her anger against God that it forces unexpected consequences.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Dogwood, go HERE

MY REVIEW:

Dogwood is a book about love – unfulfilled love and sacrificial love. It is also a book about hate and its consequences, dreams, regrets, secrets, guilt, heroes and villains. It is a story filled with twists and turns where things are not always as they seem. The story is told from several points of view which I sometimes found a little confusing but they tied together neatly by the time the story ended.

I most enjoyed the wisdom of Ruthie such as the following conversation with Karin on page 85:

“Basically life is a dance through a field full of cow manure. Most people won’t even go into the field; they go around it and pretend. Or they try to tiptoe here and there and stay close to the fence. They never see that all the fertilizer creates some beautiful flowers and some of the greenest grass you’ll ever see.”

“So you what, wallow in it?”

“No, girl, I put my hip boots on and waltz through the cow pies.”

There is much to be gleaned from Dogwood. It might even take a second or third reading to harvest it all.


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