Aiming For Love by Mary Connealy – Celebrate Lit Tour


I have read quite a few of Mary Connealy’s books over the past several years and always enjoy them. I know I can usually depend on her giving me a few hours reading pleasure with her western historical romances laced with her wonderful sense of humor. Her books may not be deep or particularly thought provoking all the time but that’s not what I’m looking for when I pick up one of her books. Connealy is one of my go-to’s when I am in the mood for pure entertainment and a cowboy or two in the mix is welcomed.

Aiming For Love is the author’s latest offering and the first book in Brides of Hope Mountain series. The series features the three Nordegren sisters who have lived alone atop a Colorado mountain since the deaths of their parents and grandparents. Each young woman is skilled in taking care of themselves in the wilderness and have been taught to avoid the outside world. Everything changes for them the day the Warden family shows up on their mountain and find themselves in need of shelter and medical help. From that point the story gets more and more interesting as the wild sisters are forced to interact with the strangers from the valley below.

Vivid descriptions of Colorado scenery and appealing characters combine with a plot that moves right along at a good pace to offer a tale that should satisfy many readers, especially if they are prepared to wait to learn more about how things will develop for certain characters. It is obvious that both other sisters, Ilsa and Ursula will be featured in their own books now that Josephine and David’s story has been told, but there are at least two men I hope to learn more about in the other books of this series – particularly Mitch and the mysterious hired gun. Great start to what promises to be a good series!

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by Celebrate Lit. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.


Book: Aiming for Love

Author: Mary Connealy

Genre: Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: October 2, 2019

Click here to get your copy!

Josephine Nordegren is one of three sisters who grew up nearly wild in southwestern Colorado. She has the archery skills of Robin Hood and the curiosity of the Little Mermaid, fascinated by but locked away from the forbidden outside world–a world she’s been raised to believe killed her parents. When David Warden, a rancher, brings in a herd much too close to the girls’ secret home, her older sister is especially frightened, but Jo is too interested to stay away.

David’s parents follow soon on his heels, escaping bandits at their ranch. But his father is wounded and needs shelter. Josephine and her sisters have the only cabin on the mountain. Do they risk stepping into the world to help those in need? Or do they remain separated but safe in the peaks of Hope Mountain?


Mary Connealy writes “romantic comedies with cowboys” and is celebrated for her fun, zany, action-packed style. She has more than half a million books in print. She is the author of the popular series Wild at Heart, Kincaid Brides, Trouble in Texas, Lassoed in Texas, Sophie’s Daughters, and many other books. Mary lives on a ranch in eastern Nebraska with her very own romantic cowboy hero. Learn more at


What it would do to someone to run wild from nearly their earliest memory?

What if three young girls had the basic skills to survive a rugged life but no adults to guide them?

Would they grow up to be a completely odd and untamed version of themselves, or the truest, in some ways most honest version?

I wanted to explore that idea: wild children, tough young women, afraid of the invading world, but lonely, too. So I created the plot for my Brides of Hope Mountain series by mixing the three little girls who’d grown up wild on the top of a mountain with some fairy tale ideas.

Book one, Aiming for Love, is Josephine Nordegren’s story. I had this vision of Ariel the mermaid seeing a man for the first time when strangers invade the high valley she lives in with only her two sisters. Curiosity is her besetting sin, or so she’s always been told. She has wilderness skills, mainly in the form of owning a bow and arrow and understanding wild animals, but for the first time, she is drawn to a man.

Jo needs to be tamed, or Dave, the man she can’t stop watching from in the woods, needs to learn the ways of the wild, because they’re out of place in each other’s worlds.


Among the Reads, October 25

Moments With Mercy, October 25

Bigreadersite , October 25

Emily Yager, October  25

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 26

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, October 26

Books, Life, and Christ, October 26

Quiet Workings, October 26

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, October 27

For Him and My Family, October 27

Stories By Gina, October 27

Jeanette’s Thoughts, October 27

Older & Smarter?, October 28

Betti Mace, October 28

Wishful Endings, October 28

The Becca Files, October 29

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, October 29

Mary Hake, October 29

Mamma Loves Books, October 29

A Baker’s Perspective, October 30

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, October 30

Britt Reads Fiction, October 30

For The Love of Books, October 30

Hallie Reads, October 31

Connect in Fiction, October 31

Christian Bookshelf Reviews, October 31

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess , November 1

To Everything There Is A Season, November 1

Daysong Reflections, November 1

Splashes of Joy, November 1

Moments, November 2

Simple Harvest Reads, November 2

Batya’s Bits, November 2

She Lives To Read, November 2

EmpowerMoms, November 3

Seasons of Opportunities, November 3

Remembrancy, November 3

Blessed & Bookish, November 4

For the Love of Literature, November 4

Through the Fire Blogs, November 4

Tell Tale Book Reviews, November 4

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, November 5

Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, November 5

Locks, Hooks and Books, November 5

Pause for Tales , November 5

Texas Book-aholic, November 6

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 6

janicesbookreviews, November 6

A Reader’s Brain, November 7

Inklings and notions , November 7

Leona J. Atkinson, November 7

Lukewarm Tea, November 7


To celebrate her tour, Mary is giving away a grand prize package of a $20 Amazon gift card, a copy of Aiming for Love, and a copy of Fairy Tales from Around the World!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Before and After Judy Christie & Lisa Wingate


Lisa Wingate’s best-selling novel Before We Were Yours touched so many lives and struck a chord in so many hearts but apparently none more than the true victims of the infamous Tennessee Children’s Home Society scandal. From the many, many responses Wingate received from adoptees and their families, she realized that it was so much more than a novel – it was the story of people’s lives and it too needed to be told.

I was already a huge fan of Lisa Wingate when I read Before We Were Yours so it was a given that I would read and enjoy it. I have lived in the Memphis area my entire life and I too have a family member who may have been one of the Tann children but he and anyone who would know the truth are no longer alive. The only hint was a conversation my mother overheard when she was a child so his story will always remain a mystery.

Before and After is the non-fiction account of true stories of a few of the actual victims who contacted Lisa Wingate or her friend Judy Christie, an author and journalist who helped organize a reunion of TCHS victims and compiled most of the stories related to her by these men and women.

It is a sad truth that many of the stolen children actually grew up in a better environment with more opportunities in life than they would have had with their birth families. Yet regardless of their improved circumstances, almost every one of these children spent their life feeling that they didn’t fit in or that something was missing. Reading their stories was a touching and eye-opening experience that made me question whether even legitimate adoptions leave the children wondering about their true identities.

The era of the Georgia Tann and TCHS black-market baby business in Memphis was truly a tragic mark on the city’s history. It also left indelible marks on the lives of so many children and their birth families. I can’t help but think of the current epidemic of human trafficking that is being experienced by families all over our country, indeed the entire world. I pray that God will send his people to put a stop to this disgrace quickly.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by the authors. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.


The compelling, poignant true stories of victims of a notorious adoption scandal—some of whom learned the truth from Lisa Wingate’s bestselling novel Before We Were Yours and were reunited with birth family members as a result of its wide reach.

From the 1920s to 1950, Georgia Tann ran a black-market baby business at the Tennessee Children’s Home Society in Memphis. She offered up more than 5,000 orphans tailored to the wish lists of eager parents—hiding the fact that many weren’t orphans at all, but stolen sons and daughters of poor families, desperate single mothers, and women told in maternity wards that their babies had died.

The publication of Lisa Wingate’s novel Before We Were Yours brought new awareness of Tann’s lucrative career in child trafficking. Adoptees who knew little about their pasts gained insight into the startling facts behind their family histories. Encouraged by their contact with Wingate and award-winning journalist Judy Christie, who documented the stories of fifteen adoptees in this book, many determined Tann survivors set out to trace their roots and find their birth families.

Before and After includes moving and sometimes shocking accounts of the ways in which adoptees were separated from their first families. Often raised as only children, many have joyfully reunited with siblings in the final decades of their lives. Christie and Wingate tell of first meetings that are all the sweeter and more intense for time missed and of families from very different social backgrounds reaching out to embrace better-late-than-never brothers, sisters, and cousins. In a poignant culmination of art meeting life, many of the long-silent victims of the tragically corrupt system return to Memphis with the authors to reclaim their stories at a Tennessee Children’s Home Society reunion . . . with extraordinary results.


Judy Christie is an award-winning journalist and the author of eighteen books of both fiction and nonfiction. A former editor at daily newspapers in Tennessee, Louisiana, Florida, and Indiana, she holds a master’s degree in literature from Louisiana State University in Shreveport. She and her husband live in rural Colorado.
Lisa Wingate is a former journalist, an inspirational speaker, and the author of numerous novels, including the New York Times bestseller Before We Were Yours and the national bestseller Tending Roses. She is a two-time ACFW Carol Award winner, a Christy Award nominee, an Oklahoma Book Award finalist, and a Southern Book Prize winner. She lives with her husband in North Texas.


A Match for Emma by Pepper Basham


A Match For Emma is probably the sweetest love story featuring lifetime best friends who discover they are the perfect match. I loved how comfortable Jon and Emma were with each other and how natural it was for them to hold hands, touch, and even an innocent snuggle or two while watching movies on TV. So how could they be so blind to the truth about their relationship? I also liked the degree of honesty the pair shared with each other – how they each pointed out areas the other needed to improve.

The author not only has an incredible talent with words but she managed to see deep with the soul of each character and bring them to life. Both Jon and Emma were so real. Emma especially wanted the best for all those she cared for but she also had her blind spots that sometimes made her judge others more harshly than they deserved. Yet after thinking and praying about it when brought to her attention, she usually recognized the truth and acted on it.

I enjoyed everything about this sweet love story including its Appalachian setting, brilliant hints of humor, realistic characters, and a strong emphasis on faith and truth. If you have not read a book by Pepper Basham, don’t wait another minute. Pick up a copy of A Match For Emma or one of the other books in her Mitchell’s Crossroads series.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by the author. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.


Emma Mitchell may enjoy sprinkling romance into the lives of others, but her own plans involve a single first-class ticket to culinary school in Europe.

When her best friend, Jon Noble, suddenly moves back to Ransom, Emma’s fairly certain her life can’t get any better…until her matchmaking schemes nosedive, her culinary future falls flat, and a life-long friendship begins to teeter on the brink of something unexpected.

With a little inspiration from Jane Austen’s classic and a touch of Blue Ridge charm, will Jon and Emma discover that what they need the most may be the last thing they’re trying to find?


Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes historical and contemporary romance novels with grace, humor, and culture clashes. She’s a Blue Ridge Mountain native and an anglophile who enjoys combining her two loves to create memorable stories of hope. You can connect with Pepper over at her group blog, The Writer’s Alley, her websiteFacebookInstagramPinterest, or Twitter.

First Love Forever Romance Collection Blind Tour


I received a copy of the First Love Forever Romance Collection from one of the authors, Carrie Fancett Pagels courtesy of Just Read Tours Blind Read tour. It was requested that I read and review her novella, His Anchor in particular as well as any or all of the other titles. Each of the novellas feature a couple who were in love at one time (or at least one of them was) and have received a second chance at renewing that love. Due to a family health crisis, time restraints have prevented me from reading all the included stories other than His Anchor at this time. I hope to find more time later to read the others.

His Anchor is set in the late 1800s on Mackinac Island in Michigan. Sadie has always loved Robert Swaine, the young uncle of one of her best friends. When he returns to Mackinac Island, Robert learns of the dire circumstances Sadie and her sisters have found themselves in after the death of their mother and the disappearance of their father. Always a caring and generous man, Robert endeavors to do everything he can to make life easier for Sadie and her family. Of course in a story of this type readers know to expect a sweet romance to develop.

Both Sadie and Robert were strong and likeable characters who deserved a chance at happiness. The setting was vividly described and the plot contained just enough action to keep things interesting. My only complaint would be that the short length necessary for a novella left me wanting to know more about the characters than time allowed. I hope that reading the companion novel will satisfy that desire. If the other novellas included in this collection as as good, it will definitely be a satisfying read.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by Just Read Tours. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.


A first love is never easily forgotten…
and coming face to face with that person again can be awkward when the heartstrings are still holding on to the “what ifs.”

In settings from 1865 to 1910, nine couples are thrown back on the same path by life’s changes and challenges. A neighbor returns from law school. An heiress seeks a quick marriage. A soldier’s homecoming is painful. A family needs help. A prodigal son returns. A rogue aeronaut drops from the sky. A runaway bridegroom comes home. A letter for aid is sent. A doctor needs a nurse. Can love rekindle despite the separation of time and space?

First Things First by Susanne Dietze
1877 – South Texas: Texas rancher’s daughter Georgie Bridge mourned when her first love, Ward Harper, left town to study the law, but now he’s back—as opposing counsel in a case against her father.

A Most Reluctant Bride by Cynthia Hickey
1880 – Ozark foothill ranch: Maggie Spoonmore marries her father’s former foreman, Zach Colton in order to salvage her reputation, yet struggles to believe he married her for love and not her inheritance.

Weeping Willow by Marcia Gruver
May of 1861 – Port Royal, Virginia: In Civil War Virginia, tables are turned for Willow Bates when Julian Finney, her childhood crush and steadfast defender, returns from the war a broken man in need of rescue.

His Anchor by Carrie Fancett Pagels
1894 – Mackinac Island, Michigan: Robert Swaine, a ship captain, returns to Mackinac Island where his first love, Sadie Duvall struggles to support her siblings. Will she anchor him to the island he has vowed to leave behind?

After the Ball by Martha Rogers
1910 – Dallas, Texas: Chase Thornton, a wealthy oil man yearns for the life of a cowboy and his first love, Susannah King, but can she trust him to keep his word to leave the city and stay on the ranch?

Lighter Than Air by Lorna Seilstad
1900 – St. Louis, Missouri: After Titus Knott crashes his hot air balloon behind Ella Mason’s boarding school, he must convince his former sweetheart that his words are true and not full of hot air.

In Due Season by Connie Stevens
1901 – Whitley, Kansas: Leah Brown accepts her role of town spinster until Gareth Shepherd unexpectedly steps back into her life. Now she’s faced with a choice. Can she forgive the man who jilted her?

Heartfelt Echoes by Jennifer Uhlarik
1875—Virginia City, Nevada: A short, urgent letter mentioning his childhood love, Millie Gordon, forces deaf Travis McCaffrey to turn to his estranged birth father for help rescuing the woman he can’t forget.

Prescription for Love by Erica Vestch
1905 – New Orleans: Erstwhile fiancée Natalie Morrison is the last person Dr. Mackenzie wants as his new nurse, but when an epidemic hits, Phin finds she’s come back into his life at the perfect time.

Where I Was Planted by Heather Norman Smith

Welcome to the Reviewer Tour for Where I Was Planted by Heather Norman Smith, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!


I am not entirely certain why I chose to review Where I Was Planted. It is not exactly the type of book I usually read and I definitely have committed to reviewing more books than I should have without reading one I might not care for. Fortunately I found this book to be heart-warming and a delight to read.

I loved observing Nate Dooley as he accepted his abandonment and resultant difficulties with such a good attitude and managed to find a group of new friends and a contentment he has never known before. Nate was a special character with a maturity beyond his years. The effect he had on those around him was endearing and I was touched by his love for others despite his own hardships. His journey to faith was especially touching.

Where I Was Planted is a must read and I highly recommend it.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by Just Read Tours. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.


In the spring of 1961, ten-year-old Nate “Weenie” Dooley has a revelation-his father is not a good one.

Inspired by National Geographic, his favorite thing next to the Bible storybook his mother gave him before she died, Nate plans to leave his father and their home in the Smokies to set out on adventure.

When he discovers that his father has left him first, it will take the help of a stray dog, some kind neighbors, a one-man-band, letters from a long-lost-aunt, and a new understanding of God to figure out he isn’t really alone.

Will he find that Copper Creek is where he’s always belonged? Or will his wanderlust keep him from ever coming back?

In her second novel, Heather Norman Smith demonstrates that love makes a family, and that while fathers may leave, our Heavenly Father is faithful, and He has a plan for all of us.


Heather lives in the Piedmont of North Carolina with her husband, Alex; their three children, Elizabeth, Sarah, and Daniel; and several pets. Along with Christian fiction writing, she is a blogger of inspirational devotions and Bible study topics. Heather also enjoys singing about Jesus and writing songs.