A Chance at Forever (a novel)

A Chance at Forever by Melissa Jagears

I loved going back to Teaville and getting caught up on the Moral Society again! This time it’s a new male character, Aaron, who has come back to the town he grew up in and was known for being quite the nasty bully. Introduced in the 2nd book of the series, A Love So True, Mercy “was always willing to help, even though a birth defect had left her with a missing right hand.” She left Teaville as a child (but was very affected by the bullying of Aaron!) and only moved back a year earlier. She and her brother and sister-in-law run the orphanage set up in the large mansion. Although this is the 3rd book in the series and much is to be gained by reading the previous ones, this book tells the stories of these 2 newer characters, so the book does stand alone.

I really enjoyed how the author showed how bullying really affects people for years and years. Kindness, similarly, also makes a lifelong impact. And woven with these truths are also truths about God – “If he could trust God to get him to heaven, he needed to trust that God could work miracles in him here on earth, too – because if her continued to rely on himself, well, he’d only keep proving how ineffectual he was.”

Of course, I also loved the sweet romance between Mercy and Aaron! I was so fortunate to receive a copy of this book from the publisher. I am freely writing a review – all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Determined to protect the children of Teaville, Kansas, from the bullying she experienced as a child, Mercy McClain finds fulfillment working at the local orphanage and serving on the school board. When Aaron Firebrook, the worst of her childhood bullies, petitions the board for a teaching position, she’s dead set against his getting the job.

Aaron knows he deserves every bit of Mercy’s mistrust, but he’s returned to his hometown a changed man and is seeking the forgiveness of those he wronged. He doesn’t expect Mercy to like him, but surely he can prove he now has the children’s best interests at heart.

Will resentment and old wounds hold them back, or can Mercy and Aaron overcome the past in time to battle the threats against the future of the town’s orphans?

“The third book in Jagears’ Teaville Moral Society series is a delightful addition with its wonderful message about God’s promises for the future and the closure of one’s past. . . . The characters are complex, and their struggles are realistic and believable, as are the details of the early 1890s time period. The romance is sweet and lovely, and Jagears knows how to pull heartstrings. If you are a historical inspirational romance reader, this is a fantastic read in an enjoyable series.”–RT Book Reviews


The Author:


Melissa Jagears is the Carol Award-winning author of the Unexpected Brides series and the Teaville Moral Society series, and an extreme night owl.

Much to her introverted self’s delight, Melissa Jagears hardly needs to leave her home to be a homeschooling mother and historical romance novelist. She doesn’t have to leave her house to be a housekeeper either, but she’s doubtful she meets the minimum qualifications to claim to be one in her official bio. Her passion is to help Christian believers mature in their faith and judge rightly. Find her online at http://www.melissajagears.com, Facebook, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

“I stay home with my kids, and though that’s PLENTY enough to do, I decided to add homeschooling and writing novels into my schedule too! I am an English/English as a Second Language teacher by trade and still occasionally convince myself to stuff an English class into my schedule since I LOVE adult second language learners (When students are eager to learn, that’s a teacher’s dream job).

My husband and I have been married since 2001 and have a daughter and two boys. My husband loves blacksmithing, knife smithing, traditional archery, hunting, etc. Generally whatever a mountain man does, he does it or has or wants to attempt it. He comes in handy for research!”
About Mesm18

A Light on the Hill (a novel)

A Light on the Hill by Connilyn Cossette

Wow! I know when I pick up a book by Connilyn that I will love it and I’d better have time to sit and read because I won’t want to put it down! The author skillfully combines ancient Biblical history, archaeological finds and Josephus’ writings with a story and romance that keeps you turning page after page, wanting to know what will happen next. What will happen as Moriyah make her way to the city of refuge?

Moriyah is a character first introduced in Wings of the Wind, but I don’t think it is necessary to have read it before this book as this is a new series. (However, if you haven’t read the previous series you should because it is fabulous!). This book starts some years later and Moriyah is now grown up. Life has beaten her down. She no sooner gets a small glimpse of hope for her life when it comes crashing down and is compounded by a tragic accident. This changes everything, and she must flee – away from her father, her home and even her friends who rely on her. I loved how, even in the difficult and uncertain days, she seeks to follow and obey God, even when it is not easy. I was so fortunate to receive a copy of this book from the publisher. I am freely writing a review – all thoughts and opinions are my own. And, indeed, it is a wonderful book, worthy of more than 5 stars!

Seven years ago, Moriyah was taken captive in Jericho and branded with the mark of the Canaanite gods. Now the Israelites are experiencing peace in their new land, but Moriyah has yet to find her own peace. Because of the shameful mark on her face, she hides behind her veil at all times and the disdain of the townspeople keeps her from socializing. And marriage prospects were out of the question . . . until now.

Her father has found someone to marry her, and she hopes to use her love of cooking to impress the man and his motherless sons. But when things go horribly wrong, Moriyah is forced to flee. Seeking safety at one of the newly-established Levitical cities of refuge, she is wildly unprepared for the dangers she will face, and the enemies–and unexpected allies–she will encounter on her way.


The Author:Connilyn Cossette

Connilyn Cossette is the CBA-Bestselling author of the Out from Egypt Series from Bethany House Publishers. There is not much she likes better than digging into the rich, ancient world of the Bible, discovering new gems of grace that point to Jesus, and weaving them into an immersive fiction experience.

When she is not homeschooling her two sweet kids (with a full pot of coffee at hand), Connilyn Cossette is scribbling notes on spare paper, mumbling about her imaginary friends, and reading obscure, out-of-print history books. There is nothing she likes better than digging into the rich, ancient world of the Bible and uncovering buried gems of grace that point toward Jesus. Although a Pacific Northwest native, she now lives near Dallas, Texas. Connect with her at http://www.connilyncossette.com.

Hearts Entwined (a novella collection)



What a fun novel!  It is comprised of 4 novellas – each long enough to have a complete story but short enough to not need the same time commitment as a full novel.  I loved all of them and enjoyed reading the different stories!  Taking place in the Midwest during the late 1800’s/early 1900’s, they all have different bents to them – rich and poor heroines, frilly fancy ones and tomboyish ones – and each was enjoyable.  They read as complete stories, but if you have read other novels by these authors you will recognize the characters as minor ones in the other novels.

I really enjoyed these stories – and really had to laugh reading the 3rd one as it dealt with camels in the American Midwest!  I recently rode a camel and loved the author’s description of them – “Camels weren’t as easy to spur as horses, since they tended to have a mind of their own…”  How true!  I highly recommend this book!  I received a copy of this book from the publisher. I am freely writing a review – all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Four top historical romance novelists team up in this new collection to offer stories of love and romance with a twist of humor.

Hearts Entwined
Four Historical Romance Novellas of Love (With a Twist of Humor)

The ways of love can be complex. Sometimes a relationship full of unexpected twists and unlikely turns leads to a bond that’s strong and secure. Join Karen Witemeyer, Mary Connealy, Regina Jennings, and Melissa Jagears for novellas that follow the winding path of romance in stories that celebrate a love that lasts forever.

The Love Knot
When Claire Nevin’s troubled younger sibling sends her an unexpected package by rail, the gift and the man who delivers it–an unexpected face from the past–threaten to upend Claire’s life forever. Fighting to hold on to all she has built, will she lose what matters most?

The Tangled Ties That Bind
Connor Kincaid returns home determined to win the hand of the woman he was too young for when he left. But Maggie is training to be a doctor in a distant town, while Connor’s about to settle on a ranch. Will either be willing to give up their dream? Or will they both have to give up the love of a lifetime?

Bound and Determined
As punishment for his recklessness, Private Bradley Willis is sent on an errand to help a retired cavalry officer move a herd across Indian Territory. No one told him the herd would be camels instead of cattle, nor that the officer’s headstrong daughter, Ambrosia Herald, would seem to be trying to undermine the whole enterprise. He’s definitely been saddled with more than he’s bargained for.

Tied and True
Wealthy Marianne Lister is in love with business assistant Calvin Hochstetler, but he can’t see past the difference in their social status. When Marianne takes a job to prove that she is prepared for a life of hard work alongside the man of her dreams, will it be enough to convince Calvin to risk it all for love?
Each tale is a fun blend of history and romance that will delight readers.


The Authors: Karen WitemeyerMary ConnealyRegina JenningsMelissa Jagears

Karen Witemeyer is a winner of multiple Carol Awards and has been a finalist for the RITA Award and National Readers’ Choice Award. She lives in Abilene, Texas.http://www.karenwitemeyer.com

Mary Connealy is well-known for her award-winning, bestselling historical romantic comedies. She lives on a ranch in eastern Nebraska. http://www.maryconnealy.com

Regina Jennings is the acclaimed author of The Fort Reno Series. She lives outside Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, with her husband and four children. http://www.reginajennings.com

Melissa Jagears, author of the Unexpected Brides series, lives in Kansas. Her novella, “Love by the Letter,” won the 2014 Carol Award. http://www.melissajagears.com.  Melissa was kind enough to skype with my book club last fall and we found out that she writes late in the night because her days are filled with homeschooling her children!

Why I Hate Green Beans… (a book review)

I laughed so many times reading this book!  It is so very wonderful!!  Lincee writes with honesty and humor about her life – relationships and reality TV (she began her writing career by doing a brief weekly synopsis about the show The Bachelor), self-image and insecurity.  She actually does begin the book by telling why she hates green beans – and from there I was hooked!  Lincee went on to say her book is “for everyone who’s tried the latest fad diet or online dating app and failed – again… Yoga pants are your friend, Jesus sees you, and green-bean diets are never the answer.”

I had such a hard time putting this book down, but fortunately it is broken into short chapters, so I could keep coming back for just a chapter!  This is Lincee’s first book, although she does have a blog that I have now subscribed to, and I can’t wait to read her next book!  This one was amazing!  And I was so fortunate to receive it from the publisher – all thoughts and opinions are my own.

If there is one thing Lincee Ray has learned over the years, it’s that the majority of women on the planet struggle with insecurities. Our skinny jeans mock us. Our just-trying-to-help mothers are just driving us crazy. Our social media feeds taunt us with everyone else’s picture-perfect lives. It’s enough to send you on a gummy-bear bender while binge-watching Friends reruns and not showering for a week. Lincee knows. She’s been there. Right there, in fact. Gummy bears and all.

For every woman who’s ever wondered if she’s unlovable, uninteresting, or unattractive, Lincee offers her particular brand of hilarious (and hard-hitting) self-reflection. Like a true friend, she shows us that the fastest way to happiness is to embrace ourselves in all our imperfection, trust that God knew what he was doing when he made us, and maybe go buy a new tube of mascara. Walk alongside Lincee as she discovers that her identity is not found in her job, her relationship status, her bank account, or her social circle. It’s found in Christ.


The Author:Lincee RayLincee Ray began blogging accidentally when she wrote a recap for the beloved show everyone loves to hate — The Bachelor. Once her audience reached triple digits, she launched her website, http://www.iHateGreenBeans.com. What began as a place for closeted Bachelor watchers to commune and discuss the wonder that is Our Host Chris Harrison slowly morphed into a place where Lincee shares stories of her everyday life.
Lincee’s Bachelor recaps later miraculously landed on the desk of an editor at Entertainment Weekly. The woman quickly deduced that Lincee was a pop culture weirdo who probably watched all the teenybopper shows on The CW. She was right.

Lincee taught herself to say the ABCs backward as a child. It kills at parties. She really does hate green beans and is a little too enthusiastic about Dr Pepper and seasonal-themed Oreos. She also believes it’s important to tell your stories — even the ones that make you seem a little crazy.

Beneath A Prairie Moon (a novel)

Oh, my! I loved reading this book! It comes out on March 20 – I was fortunate to get an advanced reader copy – but you can preorder it now!

Beneath a Prairie Moon did have a couple of unexpected twists at the end but otherwise was a semi-predictable (it’s a romance novel, remember!), sweet, wonderful, clean Christian romance occurring in 1888 in a very small town in Kansas. I thoroughly loved it and just did not want it to end, even as I stayed up way to late trying to find out what would happen! I enjoyed the characters, especially as their relationships with God and each other changed. Miss Hoity-toity Abigail begins to soften – both towards God and other people – but will she be able to trust again? At one-point Helena, Mrs Matchmaker herself (otherwise known as Mrs. Bingham), aims a “teary smile at the ceiling. ‘God, I suspect You have a plan. I trust You to see it through.’” I don’t want to say too much about what happens, but it is good!

I highly recommend this book! I received a copy of this book from the publisher. I am freely writing a review – all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Abigail Brantley grew up in affluence and knows exactly how to behave in high society. But when she is cast from the social registers due to her father’s illegal dealings, she finds herself forced into a role she never imagined: tutoring rough Kansas ranchers in the subjects of manners and morals so they can “marry up” with their mail-order brides. Mack Cleveland, whose father was swindled by a mail-order bride, wants no part of the scheme to bring Eastern women to Spiveyville, Kansas, and he’s put off by the snooty airs and fastidious behavior of the “little city gal” in their midst. But as time goes by, his heart goes out to the teacher who tries so diligently to smooth the rough edges from the down-to-earth men. How can he teach her that perfection won’t bring happiness?

The Author:Kim Vogel Sawyer  Award-winning, bestselling author Kim Vogel Sawyer is a wife, mother, gramma, chocolate-lover, cat-petter, and–most importantly–a daughter of the King! With more than 1.5 million books in print in seven different languages, Kim enjoys a full-time writing and speaking ministry. Her “gentle stories of hope” are loved by readers and reviewers alike. She enjoys spending time with her three daughters and many grandchildren. Kim and her retired military husband, Don, reside on the plains of (central) Kansas, the setting for many of her novels.

Judah’s Wife (a novel)

Judah's Wife by Angela Elwell HuntAs the subtitle says, this is a novel of the Maccabees during the silent years – the years between the Old and New Testaments of the Bible! I loved it and thought it was a fabulous historical fiction novel. Not only does the author do lots of research to provide as much real history as is known, she also has a way with words, spinning a story that keeps you wanting to turn page after page! But, this is not a book for those who want a pretty story – Judah Maccabee is a warrior, defending his country and way of life against some wicked oppressors – the fighting is nasty, to say the least!

The author writes this story from the viewpoints of Judah Maccabee and his wife Leah, alternating from one to the other, giving the reader a greater depth to the story. And I confess, at the beginning of the book I felt sorry for Leah, then I didn’t like her, and finally I admired her – I don’t usually change my feelings so much about a character in one book!

At the end of the book the author tells what parts of the book are fact and what is fiction – I liked knowing that the battles described really occurred and I’m gaining real historical knowledge as I enjoy a good book. Unfortunately, too though, the tortures described in the book really happened and some parts of it were hard to read. But I do highly recommend this book! I received a copy of this book from the publisher. I am freely writing a review – all thoughts and opinions are my own.

To Be Silent Would Be to Deny Their God, To Defy Would Bring the Wrath of the King.

Seeking quiet and safety after a hard childhood, Leah marries Judah, a strong and gentle man, and for the first time in her life Leah believes she’ll have peace. But the very nation Judah was named for has been conquered by a cruel king, who decrees that all Jews are to conform to Syrian laws or risk death for following the laws of Moses.

Judah’s father resists the decree, igniting a war that will cost him his life. But before dying, he commands Judah to pick up his sword and continue the fight–or bear responsibility for the obliteration of Israel. Leah, who wants nothing but peace, struggles with her husband’s decision–what kind of God would destroy the peace she has sought for so long?

The miraculous story of the courageous Maccabees is told through the eyes of Judah’s wife, who learns that love requires courage . . . and sacrifice.

The Author: Angela HuntChristy-Award winner Angela Hunt writes for readers who have learned to expect the unexpected in novels from this versatile author. With nearly five million copies of her books sold worldwide, she is the best-selling author of more than 100 works ranging from picture books (The Tale of Three Trees) to novels (The Note, The Nativity Story, and Esther: Royal Beauty).

Now that her two children are grown, Angie and her youth-pastor husband live in Florida with Very Big Dogs (a direct result of watching Sandlot too many times). This affinity for mastiffs has not been without its rewards–one of their dogs was featured on Live with Regis and Kelly as the second-largest canine in America. Their dog received this dubious honor after an all-expenses-paid trip to Manhattan for the dog and the Hunts, complete with VIP air travel and a stretch limo in which they toured New York City. Afterward, the dog gave out paw-tographs at the airport.

When she’s not home writing, Angie often travels to teach writing workshops at schools and writers’ conferences. And to talk about her dogs, of course.

Romantic Times Book Club presented Angela with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006. In 2008, Angela completed her PhD in Biblical Studies in Theology. She and her husband live in Florida with their mastiffs. She can be found online at http://www.angelahuntbooks.com.

Oath of Honor (a novel)

Oath of Honor #1  -     By: Lynette Eason
Wow! What a fast paced, suspenseful, great read novel! I loved it! This is the first book in the Blue Justice series and it focuses on Izzy St. John, one of six siblings, all in public service. Izzy is a police officer and, when her partner and friend Kevin is killed, and with gang activity in the city rising, she must find the killer – and who’s behind him quickly before other lives are lost.

Drugs, break ins, chases, shootings, fires, and yes, romance – I loved all the different twists and turns in this mystery. It just doesn’t stop! (I think after the intense, adrenaline pumping, action filled week Izzy had I’d definitely need a laid-back vacation!) I can’t wait to read the next book in the series! I received a copy of this book from the publisher. I am freely writing a review – all thoughts and opinions are my own.

A murdered partner. A missing brother. Will Isabelle’s silence protect those she loves . . . or delay justice?

Police officer Isabelle St. John loves her crazy, loud, law-enforcement family. She knows they’ll be there for her when things get tough. Like when her partner is murdered and she barely escapes with her own life.

Izzy is determined to discover exactly what happened, and her investigation sends her headfirst into a criminal organization, possibly with cops on the payroll–including someone from her own family. With her dead partner’s brother Ryan, a handsome homicide detective, shadowing her every move, Izzy’s head is spinning. How can she secure justice for her partner when doing so could mean sending someone she loves to prison? And how will she guard her heart when the man she’s had a secret crush on for years won’t leave her side?

The Author:Lynette EasonAward-winning, best-selling author, Lynette Eason writes for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line and for Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Her books have hit the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists and have won numerous awards such as the prestigious Carol Award, the Selah, the Daphne, the IRCC award and more. Lynette is married, has two children, and lives in Greenville, SC.