Monthly Archives: August 2015

Author Spotlight with Lillian Duncan

DeadlyIntent_h11833_300Everyone belongs somewhere. The key to happiness is recognizing that place when you get there.

 Maven Morris can’t seem to find that place. A childless widow, she has no immediate family. Forced into a medical leave, she has no career. At loose ends, she hasn’t a clue what’s next for her.

 Her neighbor, Paul Jordan knows what he wants—to move their friendship to a new level. Maven may not know what’s next, but she does know she has no interest in romance with anyone— not even her handsome neighbor.

When a young boy is abandoned in the city park, he touches her heart. In spite of his obvious special needs, she agrees to provide a temporary foster home for him. She has no idea the impact he will have on her life—or the danger he brings to her doorstep.

Lilian Ducan photo Lillian Duncan: stories of faith mingled with murder & mayhem!

Lillian is a multi-published writer with several Amazon bestsellers, including The Christmas Stalking and Betrayed. She writes the types of books she loves to read—fast-paced suspense with a touch or two of romance that demonstrates God’s love for all of us

Whether as an educator, a writer, or a speech pathologist, she believes in the power of words to transform lives, especially God’s Word.

To learn more about Lillian and her books, visit: www.lillianduncan.net. Tiaras & Tennis Shoes is her personal blog at www.lillian-duncan.com.

 

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Author Spotlight: The Amish Heiress and Patrick E. Craig

The-Amish-HeiressRachel Hershberger’s life in Paradise, Pennsylvania is far from happy. Her papa struggles with a terrible event from the past, and his emotional instability has created an irreparable breach between them. Rachel’s one desire is to leave the Amish way of life and Paradise forever. Then her prayers are answered. Rachel discovers that the strange, key-shaped birthmark above her heart identifies her as the heir to a vast fortune left by her Englischer grandfather, Robert St. Clair. If Rachel will marry a suitable descendent of the St. Clair family, she will inherit an enormous sum of money. But Rachel does not know that behind the scenes is her long-dead grandfather’s sister-in-law, Augusta St. Clair, a vicious woman who will do anything to keep the fortune in her own hands. As the deceptions and intrigues of the St. Clair family bind her in their web, Rachel realizes that she has made a terrible mistake. But has her change of heart come too late?

Amish Heiress Excerpt

Chapter Six

Daniel’s Heart

Daniel King stood on the high knoll behind his father’s house. It was just before dawn on an early-April morning. Far away to the east, a dark row of trees marked the horizon. Long, smooth clouds drifted through the slowly brightening sky. A golden glow began to grow around the tops of the trees, and as it did, the billows above were touched with a beautiful orange that faded into a dusky pink as it reached toward heaven. Above it all, the deep indigo of the dying night held time fixed in perfect suspension.

It was that mystical moment, just before the day begins, when all nature holds its breath, as though waiting for an unheard command from on high. Then the tiniest sliver of sun peeked over the eastern hills, and the world exhaled. A small breeze stirred and Daniel felt the soft brush of nature’s breath against his face. A familiar peace flooded over him. His heart was filled with a deep sense of connection to the land, and especially to this place.

The light gathered itself into golden shafts that pierced the cobalt depths and the green fields of Paradise materialized below him, reaching away to the east. One by one, Daniel began to pick out the Amish farms that surrounded Jonas King’s property. Off to the right was the Beachey place with the finest milk cows in Lancaster County. Up the road, nestled in a thick stand of Chestnut trees, were the Masts, and beyond them, the Nissleys and the Ottos. The three families were all related—carpenters and woodworkers that produced wonderful handcrafted furniture.

Down the hill to his left he could see the potato fields of the Glick farm, and beyond that the Keim’s first hay cutting was a bright patch of green that prophesied good feed for the King horses this year. Daniel could almost see the names on the mailboxes that lined Leacock Road—Umble, Troyer, Swartzendruber, Raber, Petershwim, Shetler, Stoltzfus, Yoder, and Zook. Each name held a story, not only for Daniel, but also for the Amish community that had lived and prospered here since 1720.

Daniel’s eyes turned to the blue farmhouse a half-mile away. It was the old Borntraeger place, now the Hershberger farm. It, too, was part of the long continuum of Daniel’s people in Pennsylvania, for Jenny Hershberger was a Borntraeger, and her story was a great illustration to Daniel of how der kluge und liebende Gott had kept his hand on the Plain people of Lancaster County and held them to their inheritance.

In a way, we are like the people of Israel, who have an inheritance forever in their land. Gott promised it to them and He always keeps His promise.

Daniel sighed and kicked at a large stone that was half-buried in the dirt. After a few nudges, the stone broke loose and rolled away down the hill. Daniel watched as it bounced into the small creek that meandered along the base of the knoll.

That stone is Rachel. She wants to go rolling away, and she will. She will fall into the river of the world and be swept away and leave this place. And she will never know the peace that is here, all around us.

A small, black buggy rolled along Leacock toward the Old Philadelphia Turnpike. Daniel could not make out the driver’s face, but he didn’t have to, for he knew that buggy well. A big, white gelding with a flowing mane pulled it.

It’s Tuesday and Andy Peterswhim is on his way to the market for his mother.

As Daniel watched the buggy disappear around the tree-shadowed bend in the road, he took comfort in the symmetry of his life. The seasons came and went, the crops were planted and then harvested, the people were born, they lived, and they died. It was all part of a mysterious cycle that set his people apart, a cycle that only an uncluttered heart could see. It was timeless, stretching away into the past and moving forward into the future, like a great river that is always changing, filling its banks, ever-moving, catching the sun with a million different diamond-sparkle facets of its surface and yet somehow, to the casual observer, always the same, always there. For Daniel, that was the secret of the Plain Way. It was always there, appearing to be fixed, yet when each day started, it was always a new journey, without any missteps to mar the way. If a man was accountable for his actions, to himself and to others, and spazieren gegangen im Licht des Gottes, if he walked in the light of God, there was much grace for living and every thing that happened seemed to work together for the good.

With a deep sigh, Daniel turned and started down the hill. The path through the small woods was as familiar to him as the walls of his room. He had been coming to the top of the knoll since he was a small child and it was, for him, a castle keep where he could take refuge from the pressures of the world and sort out his thoughts. Many times when they were small children, he and Rachel had come here to play. But then Rachel had moved away, and it seemed as though a great piece of Daniel’s life went with her. And later, when she returned and began to blossom into womanhood, the dictates of the Ordnung had separated them even more, and Daniel had to content himself with watching Rachel grow lovelier each day from afar.

He stopped and picked up a broken-off branch that had fallen from the huge Buckeye tree that stood a little below the crest of the ridge. There had been a storm a week ago and the ancient Chestnut had shed many small branches and limbs, and yet it still stood, strong and defiant, unmoved from the place it had been growing for over one hundred years. To Daniel, it was a symbol of all that was permanent in his life. It was under that tree that he and Rachel had pledged to be friends forever when they were only six years old. He began to absentmindedly whisk the trail in front of him with the branch as he walked, and as he did, the old yearning rose inside. Rachel! Rachel!

Sie leben immer in meinem Herzen…always in my heart!

PCraig2aBest-selling author Patrick E. Craig is a lifelong writer and musician who left a successful songwriting and performance career in the music industry to follow Christ in 1984. He spent the next 26 years as a worship leader, seminar speaker, and pastor in churches, and at retreats, seminars and conferences all across the western United States. In 2011 he signed a three-book deal with Harvest House Publishers to publish his Apple Creek Dreams series. The books are historical Amish fiction and include A Quilt for Jenna, The Road Home, and Jenny’s Choice. A Quilt For Jenna recently hit #1 best-seller in Amish Fiction on Amazon. His current series is The Paradise Chronicles and the first book in the series is The Amish Heiress, published by P&J Publishing and just released on August 10th. Patrick and his wife Judy make their home in Idaho and are the parents of two adult children and have five grandchildren. Patrick is represented by the Steve Laube Agency.

Where can readers find me online?

www.patrickecraig.com Webpage
https://www.facebook.com/PatrickECraig Facebook

https://twitter.com/PatrickECraig Twitter
Where can readers purchase my books?

http://tinyurl.com/n6sfagg Amazon

 The Amish Heiress is available in on Amazon, B&N and all your favorite online stores. You can also find it on my website at http://www.patrickecraig.com/my-book-store/

 

Devotional by Davalynn Spencer

DC_SpencerAround our country home we have an open field of wild grass, oats, sunflowers, thistle, and various weeds. The most insidious weed is a skinny little thing officially named convolvulus arvensis. Most people know it as bindweed.

Bindweed pops up without much notice, sending out fragile-looking tendrils that wrap around anything upright—from a single stem of wild oats to wire fencing. Earlier this spring, I allowed a bunch of bindweed to lace the unstacked pile of wood behind my house. Bad idea. The bindweed lived up to its name and effectively bound each piece in the pile, preventing me from lifting one without using force or shears. I was amazed at its strength.

Deceptively delicate in appearance and painfully prolific, bindweed roots can reach depths of up to twenty feet. That’s a committed weed. Often confused with the ornamental annual, morning glory and its trumpet-shaped flowers, there is nothing glorious about bindweed.

Aside from annoying me with its insidious encroachment, bindweed reminds me of tiny sins and poor habits I allow to take root in my life. If left unchecked, they quietly grow into chain-like bindings that pin me down or choke out beneficial habits and desires.

It also reminds me of Jesus’s Parable of the Sower. In Mark 4:3-20 (also in Matthew and Luke), we find Jesus telling the story of a farmer who sowed his field with good seed. As a story teller myself, I imagine a sandaled man, skin sunbaked to a beautiful bronze, living in a semi-arid section of Israel’s former Promised Land. He wears a shoulder bag containing precious seed that will take root and grow and provide a good harvest come fall.

As he spreads the seed by hand, flinging the grains in an arc, some falls into the rich soil he has prepared. Some falls on rockier ground along the edges, and a few seeds scatter to the worn path and unattended areas next to his field. The birds eat some of the seeds, but most of it sprouts.

This is a wonderful story that I recommend you read during a quiet time with the Lord, for today I want to focus on the thorns that Jesus said choked out the seed and made it unfruitful. Jesus explained clearly what the thorns were: worldly cares, hunger for wealth, a clamoring for more and more things.

Jesus knew what He was talking about when he issued this warning. The seed is God’s word, He said, and is often stolen from our hearts by the enemy, allowed to dry up and wither, or choked out by noxious desires. In the story, only one-fourth of the seed grew and produced a crop.

I want to be in that 25%. Therefore, I’m grateful for the bindweed that finds its way among my flowers and garden plants. It reminds me that I must be vigilant to guard His word in my heart and not let it be choked out by the distractions of life.

Bio: Davalynn Spencer writes inspirational Western romance complete with rugged cowboys, their challenges, and their loves. She is the wife and mother of professional rodeo bullfighters, and worked several years as a rodeo journalist and crime-beat reporter, winning awards in both arenas. Her fiction has finaled for the 2015 Will Rogers Medallion and the 2014 Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award, Selah, and Holt Medallion. Davalynn teaches writing at Pueblo Community College and makes her home on Colorado’s Front Range with her handsome cowboy and a Queensland heeler named Blue. Connect with Davalynn online at www.davalynnspencer.com.

Book 4.Summ BridesThe Columbine Bride

Lucy Powell is on a path not of her choosing: widowhood. But she’s determined she doesn’t need anyone’s help to get her neglected ranch back in order and running right—especially the neighboring rancher who keeps showing up at the end of her shotgun. Buck Reiter can’t leave Lucy and her two young’uns alone. It’s just not in him to sit by and watch while someone struggles. But he ends up as the struggler, searching for a way to let Lucy know there’s a whole lot more going on in his heart than just being neighborly

Island Dreams and Kimberly Rose Johnson

Island Dreams book two in the Wildflower B&B Romance series released this month. I love this series and hope you will as well. Here is the back cover blurb.

Island Dreams CoverPiper Hunt arrives on Wildflower Island to develop family property into an upscale resort knowing this may be her last chance to prove her worth to her father. With grandiose ideas, she soon finds herself at odds with adjoining property owner, Chase Grayson. As she begins to appreciate the simplicity of the island, she struggles to maintain balance between her father’s wishes, preserving the natural beauty of the island, and her attraction for Chase.

Chase Grayson values the peace and quiet of Wildflower Island. That serenity is threatened when Piper Hunt discloses her plans to develop an upscale resort that not only butts up to his property, but will turn the island into a busy tourist destination. In fighting her plans, he also finds himself fighting his attraction to her. If he doesn’t stop her plans for the resort, his life will be altered forever. If he succeeds, it means he will never see her again. Can he live with either choice?

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1HsuiRs

IMG_4314-2 PublicityKimberly writes stories that warm the heart and feed the soul. Kimberly and her husband have been married for 25 years and will soon be empty nesters. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and enjoys, playing the piano, reading, dark chocolate, and coffee with friends-not necessarily in that order.

 

Vison by Teresa Pollard

Vision

By Teresa Pollard

   DSCF2229About three years ago, a vicious virus attacked my left eye, causing excruciating pain, which in turn literally caused cataracts to form in both my eyes overnight. Cataracts generally take years to form. I had worn glasses since I was six years old. Now the cataract surgery implanted the lenses in my eyes so that for the first time in my life, I was able to get up in the morning and see the world without glasses. I knew I’d still need reading glasses, but what I didn’t realize was that by choosing the distance vision lenses, that would take away what little close-up vision I did have.

Sometimes it seems to me that a vicious virus has also attacked our world today, and the people are walking around in a myopic fog. How else can we explain that we’re mindlessly committing genocide on our own future and don’t even seem to realize it? Proverbs tells us that “without vision, people perish.” 1 Peter 5:8 warns that Satan “prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” It seems that today the blind are leading the blind right into his gaping mouth. And innocent babies are the sacrifice they bring with them.

But I’m getting off the subject. What is our vision today? Do we even have one? I don’t think so. We have a mandate from Christ to go to all the world and preach the gospel. That should be our vision. About seventy percent of Americans claim to be Christians. But if asked, a much smaller percentage of them admit to a belief in a literal heaven or hell. Only a tiny fraction have ever led anyone to Christ. So what do they believe in? Not the Christ of the Bible! It’s time true believers took out our scalpel, the Bible, and spoke the truth of God’s Word. The Holy Spirit will be the Surgeon if we do. Lives depend on it! The myopia of self must be lifted, and the corrective lenses of the Bible and the Holy Spirit must be implanted. Unlike man’s surgery, God’s doesn’t take away anything. The vision will be perfect. We’ll see ourselves as we truly are, and we’ll see our purpose in a fallen world. And we will also see a glorious vision of the future God has planned for us with Him forever. God bless.

IMG_0823Back Cover Blurb for Not Ashamed

Charity Wright is ashamed of who she is. She just found out she was born of a brutal rape. Now, everyone tells her that her biological father has changed. They say he’s a good man who only helps people. They say she must forgive him. But do people really change? Especially when they’ve done something so heinous? Is forgiveness even possible?

Before she can confront her father with his crime, she almost literally stumbles onto another crime. In the same place.   Has the rapist also become a murderer? Can Charity discover the truth before the killer strikes again? Or will her fury destroy her?

Amazon buy link: http://www.amazon.com/Not-Ashamed-Windspree-Book-2-ebook/dp/B0115A4RSO/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1438973690&sr=1-2&keywords=not+ashamed

Teresa Pollard FB Headshot for books-FBTeresa Pollard is from Richmond, Virginia, and was saved at a young age.  She has a Master of Arts degree in English and Creative Writing from Hollins College, and has served as a Sunday School teacher and children’s worker for most of the last forty years. She is the co-author of Not Guilty and Not Ashamed (due July 7), and the author of Tokens of Promise and Woman of Light, (also due out from HopeSprings Books in October). Married for forty years, she was devastated by divorce and the death of her youngest daughter, but God has blessed her with a new home and another grandson, and she now resides in Dacula, Georgia.  She blogs every Tuesday at http://teresatalkstaboo.wordpress.com. Follow her on Facebook at Teresa Pollard, Author.

Spotlight on Sarah Sundin and Through Waters Deep

Kimberly here. Due to a technical glitch this is late posting. My apologies. I hope you all had a great weekend! I spent most of mine preparing for a writers conference. Yay! It’s been a few years since I’ve been able to attend one, so I’m very excited.

I hope you enjoy reading about Through Waters Deep. Enjoy!

Through Waters DeepIt is 1941 and America teeters on the brink of war. Handsome and outgoing naval officer Ensign Jim Avery escorts British convoys across the North Atlantic in a brand-new destroyer, the USS Atwood. On shore, Jim encounters Mary Stirling, a childhood friend who is now an astute and beautiful Boston Navy Yard secretary.

When evidence of sabotage on the Atwood is discovered, Jim and Mary must work together to uncover the culprit. A bewildering maze of suspects emerges, and Mary is dismayed to find that even someone close to her is under suspicion. With the increasing pressure, Jim and Mary find that many new challenges—and dangers—await them.

Sarah Sundin green 1Sarah Sundin is the author of seven historical novels, including Through Waters Deep (Revell, August 2015). Her novella “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” in Where Treetops Glisten is a finalist for the 2015 Carol Award. In 2011, Sarah received the Writer of the Year Award at the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference. A mother of three, Sarah lives in northern California, works on-call as a hospital pharmacist, and teaches Sunday school and women’s Bible studies. She also enjoys speaking for church, community, or writers’ groups. You can find her at http://www.sarahsundin.com

Links

 

Website: http://www.sarahsundin.com

Blog: http://www.sarahsundin.com/blog

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SarahSundinAuthor

Twitter: http://twitter.com/sarahsundin

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/sarahsundin Through Waters Deep

God is Good 1 Peter 5:7

Panoramic of Yaquna HeadIt’s been long time since I’ve posted a devotional that I have written to this blog. I’ve been swamped with deadline after deadline for pretty much the past year, but I feel like I can finally breath and wanted to share something with you that recently happened.

I’ve been conversing with an editor at a publishing house about a project that I’ve been working on off and on for the past five years. It’s the story that I work on between deadlines. The editor thinks the story has potential, diagnosed the problem with it, and encouraged me to make some changes. But I had to decide what those exact changes. Believe me when I tell you, I didn’t have a clue how to do what she was asking. So I did the only thing I knew to do.

I prayed.

This morning, three days later, I woke up with the project on my mind and all of a sudden I knew what I needed to do. It was like the Lord fed me what needed to be done to make this story work. I ran it by a good writer friend, and she loved it. I also sent the idea to the editor–I’m still waiting to hear what she thinks. Hopefully by the time this posts, I will know. 🙂

Today I want to encourage you to bring you concerns to the Lord because He cares. 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to give our anxieties to Him. He wants to carry our burdens.

Don’t you love how much He cares about each of us? 🙂