Endangered Refuge Book Review

About the Book

Book: Endangered Refuge

Author: Sherri Wilson Johnson

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romantic Suspense

Release date: August 2, 2022

He wants to protect her. She wants to protect him. A powerful man with dark secrets may kill them both.

Undercover U.S. Fish and Wildlife Special Agent Dallas Heath has infiltrated one of the largest big cat illegal trading rings in the States. Now he must unearth vital evidence to bring down kingpin Mitchell Avery before the next litter of cubs crosses state lines. Multiple failed attempts have cost Dallas time and progress, and now he’s threatened with being pulled off the case. The clock is ticking for this seasoned officer. It doesn’t help that a life which includes deception and being apart from the only woman he’s ever loved makes him doubt if undercover work is for him.

Special Agent Elyse Bradford has spent the last three months undercover living next door to Mitchell Avery posing as a woman of great means and vying for an invite to one of his big cat auctions, to which only the most serious and authenticated buyers are invited. If only she could confide in her best friend and fellow agent Dallas, maybe he could help her devise a plan before her cover is blown.

If they’d been assigned to work the case together, they’d have already brought Avery’s organization down. But Dallas is working undercover somewhere too. Since they can’t share the details of their missions or their locations with each other, the former partners—torn apart by assignments too many times—must find another way.

After a strange twist of events propels them together again, hope’s flame flickers…until word spreads of a mole—either in Avery’s organization or within the USFWS. And now neither one knows who to trust. Can they even trust each other when they’ve been apart for so many years?

On a backdrop of Mobile Bay on the Gulf coast, Dallas and Elyse fight to save endangered tigers, keep their covers intact and bring down an enemy whose reach is far beyond what anyone imagined. After tensions rise and tempers flare—coupled with lies and manipulation from all around—they could lose everything they’ve worked for. Including each other.

Will they succeed on their mission without ripping apart their shot at a future together?

Click here to get your copy!

My thoughts

Just as in the opening of the series, Endangered Refuge is an exciting read, interweaving romance and danger at a steady pace. Til the very end, I wondered how in the world it was going to end for the two undercover agents, and who was going to save them.

I thought both characters were well done, even being undercover as they were. They held their undercover personas well, especially Dallas, aka, Dakota. Johnson also provided space and time within the storyline for each person to peel back layers from their past, and that truly that helped to deepen their character and round them out.

I actually didn’t find the ending rushed, which can be a problem in some suspense novels. The familiarity of the characters from beforehand and progression of their relationship was believable to a point. Sometimes it’s a balance between totally authentic and what would work best in the story world. I think it was well balanced.

I really enjoyed the setting, the characters of course, and even the villain, as the author gave him some redeemable qualities here and there. Overall, it was fun and entertaining, weaving danger, romance and faith together.

Thank you to the author and Celebrate Lit for providing me a copy to read in advance. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Sherri Wilson Johnson is an Inspirational Romance novelist and graphic designer. She lives in Georgia with her husband and their two dogs, and they are empty-nesters. Sherri loves spending time with family, vacationing at the beach, curling up with a good book or working on her current work-in-progress. She dreams of a second home on some beach somewhere some day, where she can plot romantically suspenseful novels all day and night.

Follow Sherri on Instagram and Facebook plus on Amazon and Bookbub. Find out more about her on her website: http://sherriwilsonjohnson.com

More from Sherri

For as long as I can remember, I have been in love with Bengal tigers. As a young girl, I even tried to adopt one. In actuality, the “Adopt a Tiger” call was a call to sponsor one in a zoo. Sadly, my family wasn’t financially able to do that, but my love for tigers continued until…well, I’ll let you know if it ever stops. I’ve jokingly said that I will own a captivatingly beautiful tiger with a precious pink nose when I get to heaven. It’s not at all impossible, right? I mean, if the lion and the lamb will be friends, surely my afterlife-self can own a tiger. I’ve put in a request, so we shall see. The fact that I’m allergic to cats won’t hinder me then either!

Every year when we go to the local State Fair, I always make sure I’m there at the right time to see the tiger show. For $5, you can feed them by putting a piece of meat on the end of a stick. You can’t actually pet them or anything like that, though. I became aware a few years ago of the abuse these amazing creatures go through just by being carted around from town to town, put on display, made to perform. And the “pet a cub” opportunities are more harmful to the babies than you can imagine. When they get too big for the petting zoo, what happens to them?

Out of my love for tigers, I began researching to find the answer to that question. Out of that came Endangered Refuge, a reunion romance filled with mystery and suspense. Many of you have probably heard of television shows that give you a behind-the-scenes look at big cat sanctuaries only to discover later that they are fronts for trafficking them and selling their parts on the black market.

Here is where my hero and heroine enter. Special Agents Dallas Carter and Elyse Bradford are both undercover with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services working to shut down a big cat trader. Best friends since college, their work often takes them to different places around the country, but their physical separation never seems to separate their hearts. When they run into each other on the secret mission, neither one knowing that the other has been assigned to the case, sparks fly. But they aren’t always good sparks. Because someone is killing to protect a secret, it’s up to the two agents, posing as socialite Vivian Chandler and cat handler Dakota Heath, to expose the person who exploits these amazing creatures, so all power struggles and personal opinions must be set aside.

This is book four in my Jeopardized Reunions series, which is set in the Mobile Bay area of Alabama. This particular story is set in two places on the bay, in the Gulf Shores/Fort Morgan area and on the Fish River, which separates Fairhope and Magnolia Springs (the setting of book three in the series, Unfortunate Homecoming).

I hope you will consider checking out Endangered Refuge and the other books in the series, all set on Mobile Bay and all written as standalones. The common thread? They are all reunion romances. So while my characters have a past that tore them apart, they have the promise of a future.

I’d love it of you’d follow me on social media and join my subscriber list. I’m always excited to hear from readers!

Places you can find out more about legitimate big cat sanctuaries:

Carolina Tiger Rescue: https://carolinatigerrescue.org

Crown Ridge Tiger Sanctuary: https://crownridgetigers.com

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, August 12

Simple Harvest Reads, August 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, August 13

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 14

deb’s Book Review, August 15

Betti Mace, August 16

Aryn the Libraryan, August 17

Inklings and notions, August 18

For Him and My Family, August 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, August 20

Sara Beth Williams, August 20

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, August 21

An Author’s Take, August 22

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 23

Truh and Grace Homeschool Academy, August 24

Blogging With Carol, August 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sherri is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/20a84/endangered-refuge-celebration-tour-giveaway

Grace on the Mountain Trail Book Review

About the Book

Book: Grace in the Mountain Trail

Author: Misty M. Beller

Genre:Christian Historical Romance

Release date: July 12, 2022

This epic journey is her last hope to find her lost brother—the only family she has left.

When Lola Carson’s father died, his last words spoke of a half-brother she’d never known about. And now, to claim her own inheritance and come to terms with her father’s secret life, she must find this mysterious man—whose last known whereabouts are somewhere west of the wild Rocky Mountains. After hiring family friends to accompany her on the trek, she sets out for a wilderness few white women have ever seen. She doesn’t expect the majestic peaks to captivate her so, nor the half-dead brave they find on one of the slopes.

White Owl left his village and his broken heart behind when he set out for a fresh start. His newfound faith is the one anchor in his life. He’s desperate to learn more about the God he’s committed to follow and become an interpreter for the missionaries who led him to faith. But he barely starts his journey when a hunting accident nearly kills him. The woman who discovers him in the midst of his fevered delirium seems to be a gift from above.

But the more White Owl learns about Lola’s companions and her dangerous quest, the more he realizes his own calling is clear—to take her safely to her brother. The question is, will he have to sacrifice more than his heart to accomplish that goal?

From a USA Today bestselling author comes another epic journey through breathless landscapes and adventure so intense, lives will never be the same.

Click here to get your copy!

My thoughts

I’ve heard good things about Misty M. Beller. All warranted after reading this riveting historical romance.

Beller deftly captures the visual surroundings of the mountain trail as she takes us on a journey with Lola and White Owl. I loved the characterization of White Owl and how well she portrays someone navigating between two different cultures mentally.

I enjoyed the interesting comparisons he made toward the Creator, as he referred to God, and his own polytheism tendencies growing up. I thought that was handled well.

I loved the tough but gentle soul of Lola. There was such chemistry between the two, yet she handles it with care, and decency as befitting to the historical setting. I expected more lengthy descriptions but was delighted to read an action-packed adventure that pulled you into the journey and wouldn’t let you go. Just when you thought you and the characters could rest, something else crazy happens.

I really enjoyed this read, and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys historical romances woven with faith. Thank you to the publisher, author, and Celebrate lit for offering me a complimentary copy to review. Please don’t forget to enter the giveaway and read on for more about the author and book.

About the Author

Misty M. Beller is a USA Today bestselling author of romantic mountain stories, set on the 1800s frontier and woven with the truth of God’s love.

Raised on a farm and surrounded by family, Misty developed her love for horses, history, and adventure. These days, her husband and children provide fresh adventure every day, keeping her both grounded and crazy.

Misty’s passion is to create inspiring Christian fiction infused with the grandeur of the mountains, writing historical romance that displays God’s abundant love through the twists and turns in the lives of her characters.

Sharing her stories with readers is a dream come true for Misty. She writes from her country home in South Carolina and escapes to the mountains any chance she gets.

More from Misty

Is this the book for you?

With so many books out there, it’s sometimes hard to know if a new book will be the right fit for you or not. I thought it might be fun to share some highlights that may help you know if you’d like to read Grace on the Mountain Trail. 

If you…

  • Love adventure and don’t mind being snowed in (at least in your imagination as you sit snuggled in your comfortable house).
  • Fall for Native American heroes who are, yes, strong and capable, but also searching for a fresh start and eager to grow in their fledgling faith.
  • Find unusual and remote settings fascinating, especially the Rocky Mountains!
  • Enjoy historical detail and are eager to live vicariously in the early 1800s Montana frontier.

What to expect from Grace on the Mountain Trail?

  • Emotion-rich sweet romance.
  • Native American heroes who know how to be both tough and gentle.
  • The grandeur of the Montana Rockies.
  • Tough heroines who do what needs to be done.
  • Adventure that will keep you turning pages.
  • A peek at one of our favorite characters from earlier in the series!

If Grace on the Mountain Trail sounds like the right fit for you, I pray you love Lola and White Owl’s story!

Blessings!

Misty

Blog Stops

Texas Book-aholic, August 1

Mary Hake, August 1

Inklings and notions, August 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, August 2

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, August 3

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 3

Jeanette’s Thoughts, August 4

The Book Club Network, August 4

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, August 5

Cover Lover Book Review, August 5

Betti Mace, August 6

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, August 6

Locks, Hooks and Books, August 7

Writing From the Heart Land, August 8

deb’s Book Review, August 8

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, August 9

For Him and My Family, August 9

Connie’s History Classroom, August 10

Lilys’ Book Reviews, August 10

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, August 11

Holly’s Book Corner, August 11

Blossoms and Blessings, August 12

Life, Love, Writing, August 12

Pause for Tales, August 13

Splashes of Joy, August 14

Sylvan Musings, August 14

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Misty is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/21360/grace-on-the-mountain-trail-celebration-tour-giveaway

Book Review: Now and Then and Always

Now and Then and Always: Maple Valley book 1

by Melissa Tagg

Contemporary Christian Romance

2020 Christy Award Winner

About the book

ast year, after traumatic circumstances forced her from her job as a nanny, Mara Bristol finally found a place to belong – the winsome Everwood Bed & Breakfast at the edge of Maple Valley, Iowa. For months, she’s helped its owner, Lenora, maintain the ramshackle property despite their shortage of guests. But when Lenora fails to return from a month-long trip and the bank threatens foreclosure, Mara worries she’s once again alone…abandoned …about to lose the only true home she’s ever known.

Detective Marshall Hawkins is no closer to whole today than he was two years ago…the day his daughter died. Between his divorce, debilitating migraines, and a dependence on medication, his life is falling apart. And when a reckless decision on the job propels him into administrative leave, he has no other plan but to get in his truck and drive. A one-night stay at the Everwood was supposed to be just that. But there’s something about the old house-or maybe its intriguing caretaker-that pulls him in.

Together, Mara and Marshall set out to save the Everwood. But its secrets run deeper than they could’ve imagined. As they renovate the house and search for its missing owner, they’ll each confront the pain that brought them to the Everwood in the first place…and just maybe discover a faith and love to help them carry on.

My thoughts

As always, I waited forever to read this book until all the hype died down. But this book yall…. wow. Some intense characterization and romance!

My favorite meet cutes are the rescuing meet-cutes where someone has to rescue the other. Yes, most of the time it is the guy rescuing the girl. What can I say, sometimes I am a little old-fashioned. In the case of Now and Then and Always, they kind of both rescue each other at the same time, so it’s a… very interesting and intense scene and I loved it!

Yall know me, I’m a huge fan of the broken heroes. The guys who need to be pieced back together. It was a wonderful journey watching Marshall find his way back to whole again. Finding reconciliation with his ex, and grace and peace that only comes from above are the best kinds of journeys.

As always, Melissa Tagg is flawless in her writing, and her small town charm is endearing. She does a great job of both re introducing the town of Maple Valley, reviewing some of the characters from the past (she’s written a lot of Maple Valley books – and she even has a neat chronological guide on her website!!) And introducing a new cast of characters that will be part of this expanded series. Some Bright Someday which is the next, is already out.

You’ll love this story if you enjoy endearing small town charm with deep characterization and heartwarming romance!

From Shore to Shore Book Review and Giveaway

About the Book

Book: From Shore to Shore

Author: Tabitha Bouldin

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release date: May 31, 2022

Sparrow-BOULDIN-From-Shore-to-Shore-663x1024

Can one captain show her the deep love of the ultimate Captain without falling in love himself?

Bree Jamison comes to Sparrow Island for one reason: to study coral reefs. She’s not interested in happily-ever-after and certainly won’t allow her handsome boat captain to sway her into believing these islands are different from any others. But when she finds an old shipwreck and learns the history of pirates and treasure, Bree finds herself searching for something that always feels just out of reach.

Cooper Carmichael takes the job as boat captain for the enigmatic Bree to further his career. He never expected her to be so driven—or so painfully opposed to God.

All Cooper wants is his happy island life. He wants for nothing. In fact, he’s made it his mission to be content. In every aspect of his life. Bree throws a wrench in his plan as her presence pushes Cooper to want for things he deems unnecessary.

A man striving for contentment. A woman who believes God is picking on her.

It takes one to show the other that no matter which shore you find yourself on, God got there first.

Read the next Sparrow Island novel in the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.

Click here to get your copy!

About the Author

Tabitha-Bouldin-600x574

Tabitha Bouldin is a student at Southern New Hampshire University, where she is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s in Creative Writing. As a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), she works with critique groups and provides endorsements for other authors. Tabitha’s genre of choice is Contemporary Christian Romance which she describes as: Adventure with heart. Tabitha spent ten years working as a Medical Assistant before God opened the door which allowed her to become a stay-at-home-homeschooling-mom and author.

My Thoughts

As always, Bouldin’s writing doesn’t disappoint.

Bree is a world-traveling marine biologist who lives for her next dive. She’s paired with another guy who she thought felt the same way, but when he gives up everything for some skinny model, Bree finds herself jilted, yet again, and out of a diving partner. Then she encounters Conner, the steady and calm and capable captain they’d originally hired together. He seems to know everyone on the island, and becomes an invaluable resource and friend, helping her out of jam after jam.

But she can’t develop feelings for him. She’s leaving in a few months, and he has made it abundantly clear that he is not interested in romance either. Or has he?

The building romantic tension, moments of spiritual reflection, ocean setting and small town island life are all beautifully woven together and made the story fabulous, but throw in a legendary pirate ship mystery, and you’ve got yet another amazing Bouldin novel.

Thank you so much to the author and publisher for providing me an advanced copy. I would’ve bought one anyway as I thoroughly enjoy all of Bouldin’s independence island books.

Please don’t forget about the giveaway below, and read on after this to find out some behind the scenes from Tabitha.

More from Tabitha

Writing in the Independence Islands series has been a true blessing, and From Shore to Shore is no different, except that these characters brought out feelings that I never expected.

Most of the time, when I go into a story, I know a bit of what’s going to happen. I already understand the characters’ backstory and what has driven them to this point in there life where I’ve picked up their tale and begun to weave it into a book.

Bree decided she wanted to go another route.

Cooper didn’t want to talk to me for half the book.

Christian walked onto the page and tried to take over because he didn’t want to wait for his turn in book five.

These characters, I tell you what, they’re a demanding bunch.

Finally, though, finally they settled in and told me their story.

You might remember Cooper, he’s Mel’s brother and he showed up in book one, Mishaps off the Mainland. Cooper is a delightful yet careful captain who delights in the open ocean and loves the islands.

Bree is a tangled mess of consternation. She scorns love and believes it to be a trap. Even God’s love is suspect in Bree’s eyes.

These two are imperfectly suited for each other, but God has a plan to help them both, and He helped me through every page of From Shore to Shore, a story that shows no matter how far you run, no matter what shore you find yourself on, God got there first.

The Independent Island series novels by Tabitha Bouldin

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, June 23

Christina’s Corner, June 23

lakesidelivingsite, June 24

An Author’s Take, June 25

Texas Book-aholic, June 25

Inklings and notions, June 26

For Him and My Family, June 27

Sylvan Musings, June 27

deb’s Book Review, June 28

Aryn the Libraryan, June 29

Locks, Hooks and Books, June 29

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, June 30

Life, Love, Writing, July 1

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, July 1

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, July 2

Blossoms and Blessings, July 3

Miriam Jacob, July 3

She Lives To Read, July 4

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, July 5

Blogging With Carol, July 5

Simple Harvest Reads, July 6 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Tabitha is giving away the grand prize package a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1f45b/from-shore-to-shore-celebration-tour-giveaway

2022 Carol Award Finalists

Congratulations to all of the amazing Christian Fiction novelists who have been nominated for the 2022 Carol Award. Here are the finalists!

Contemporary


Where Grace Appears by Heidi Chiavaroli
ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published)
Editor: Melissa Jagears

A Piece of the Moon by Chris Fabry
Tyndale House
Editor: Sarah Rische

Roots of Wood and Stone by Amanda Wen
Kregel Publications
Editors: Janyre Tromp and Joel Armstrong

Historical


The Orchard House by Heidi Chiavaroli
Tyndale House
Editors: Caleb Sjogren and Jan Stob

A Tapestry of Light by Kimberly Duffy
Bethany House (Baker) Publishing
Editor: Jessica Sharpe

Rain by Dana McNeely
Mountain Brook Ink
Editor: Miralee Ferrell

Historical Romance


The Paris Dressmaker by Kristy Cambron
HarperCollins Christian Publishing
Editors: Becky Monds and Laura Wheeler

The Prince of Spies by Elizabeth Camden
Bethany House (Baker) Publishing
Editors: Raela Schoenherr and Jessica Sharpe

The Thief of Blackfriars Lane by Michelle Griep
Barbour Publishing
Editors: Reagen Reed and Annie Tipton

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller


Right Cross by Andrew Huff
Kregel Publications
Editors: Janyre Tromp and Dori Harrell

Manna Reign by Neena Roth – aka Dineen Miller
ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published)
Editors: Judy DeVries and Alice Shepherd

Dark Intercept by Andrews and Wilson (Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson)
Tyndale House
Editor: Karen Watson

Novella


Star Light (part of The Heart of Christmas Anthology) by Sara Davison
Independent Author
Editor: Deb Elkink

Believing the Hero by Tara Grace Ericson
ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published)
Editor: Brandi Aquino

A Texas Christmas Carol (from Under the Texas Mistletoe) by Karen Witemeyer
Bethany House (Baker) Publishing
Editors: Dave Long and Jessica Sharpe

Romance


The Amish Quiltmaker’s Unexpected Baby by Jennifer Beckstrand
Kensington Books
Editor: John Scognamiglio

All That Really Matters by Nicole Deese
Bethany House (Baker) Publishing
Editors: Sarah Long and Raela Schoenherr

Provenance by Carla Laureno
Tyndale House
Editors: Sarah Rische and Jan Stob

Romantic Suspense


Driven by Sara Davison
Mountain Brook Ink
Editors: Miralee Ferrell and Alyssa Roat

Danger on the Loch by Paige Edwards
Covenant Communications Inc.
Editor: Ashley Gebert

Labyrinth of Lies by Irene Hannon
Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing Group
Editors: Kristin Kornoelje and Jennifer Leep

Short Novel


Choosing His Family by Jill Lynn
Love Inspired (Harlequin)
Editor: Shana Asaro

A Mother’s Strength by Allie Pleiter
Love Inspired (Harlequin)
Editor: Melissa Endlich

Texas Baby Cover-up by Virginia Vaughn
Love Inspired (Harlequin)
Editor: Shana Asaro

Speculative


Secrets in the Mist by Morgan L. Busse
Enclave Publishing
Editors: Lisa Laube and Steve Laube

Windward Shore by Sharon Hinck
Enclave Publishing
Editors: Lindsay Franklin and Reagen Reed

Cast the First Stone by David James Warren
(aka Susan May Warren, James L. Rubart, and David C. Warren)
Tristone Media Group
Editor: Rel Mollett

Young Adult


Traitor by Laurie Lucking
Love2Read Love2Write Publishing
Editor: Michele Israel Harper

Realms of Light by Sandra Fernandez Rhoads
Enclave Publishing
Editors: Lisa Laube and Steve Laube

Mountain of Flame by Diane E. Samson
ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published)
Editors: Rebecca Jaycox and Kathy McKinsey

Debut


Sugar Birds by Cheryl Grey Bostrom
She Writes Press
Editors: Sandra Byrd and Alexandra Shelley

Solomon’s Porch by Janet Morris Grimes
Elk Lake Publishing
Editors: Sue Fairchild and Deb Haggerty

Into the Room by Steven Rogers
Elk Lake Publishing
Editor: Michele Chynoweth and Deb Haggerty

2022 Selah Award Winners – Fiction

I had a blast attending the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference. Below is a list of the 2022 Selah Award finalists and winners of the Fiction categories. The winners were announced at a live ceremony on Wednesday, June 1st, 2022 at 7pm Eastern.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Audio Books

Prayer Walk (2nd place)
Janet Holm McHenry
ACX Audible

Sacred Sense from a Second Look (3rd place)
Phyllis Clark Nichols
Southern Stories Publishing

Soul Strong (WINNER)
Lucinda Secrest McDowell
Oasis Audio

The Stars in April
Peggy Wirgau
Illuminate YA/ Iron Stream Media

With My Soul
Laurie Batzel
Anaiah Press

Children’s Picture Books

Bedtime with Mommy
Nancy I. Sanders
End Game Press

Dachshund Through the Snow (2nd place)
Michelle Medlock Adams
End Game Press

Dream Big, My Precious One (3rd place)
Jill Roman Lord
Worthy Kids

God Made Us Just Right
Allia Zobel Nolan/Illustrated by Katy Hudson
Kregel Publications

Mrs. Noah
Patti Richards
Little Lamb Books

My Arms Will Hold You Tight (WINNER)
Crystal Bowman, Teri McKinnley
Tyndale House Publishing

You’re More than a Sprout
Jill Roman Lord
BH Kids

Children’s Literature

Children’s Bible Stories for Bedtime (WINNER)
Julie Lavender
Z Kids/Penguin Random House

Eat God’s Food (3rd place)
Susan Neal
Elk Lake Publishing

Ida Scudder Missionary Doctor
Terri Kelly
BJU Press

Puppy Dog Devotions (2nd place)
Michelle Medlock Adams
New Hope Kidz/Iron Stream Media

 Middle Grade Fiction & YA Literature

Easy Target (WINNER)
Tim Shoemaker
Focus on the Family

Escape from the Everglades (2nd place)
Tim Shoemaker
Focus on the Family

Hesitant Heroes
Sharon Rene
Anaiah Press

Into The Great Marinara (3rd place)
Nicolas C. Day
Elk Lake Publishing

Secrets in September
Doreen McAvoy
Elk Lake Publishing

Wolf Soldier
James R. Hannibal
Enclave

Wraithwood
Alyssa Roat
Mountain Brook Fire/Mountain Brook Ink

Anthologies

Christmas in Mistletoe Square (3rd place)
Janine Rosche, Pepper Basham, Teresa Tysinger, Cara Putman
Independently Published

Real Life. Real Ladies (2nd place)
Rita Klundt
E A Books

We May Be Done but We’re Not Finished (WINNER)
Deborah DeArmond
Elk Lake Publishing

Short Stories Online & In Print

Away in a Manger
Beth Pugh
Ally Press

His Touch
Maureen Miller
PenningPansies.com

Your Eve
Hannah Linder
HannahLinderBooks.com

First Novel

Every Window Filled with Light (3rd place)
Sheila Stovall
Elk Lake Publishing

Tempest
C J Campbell
Iron Stream Media 

The Chase
Bradley Caffee
Mountain Brook Fire/Mountain Brook Ink

The Endling (WINNER)
Deborah Maxey
Firefly Southern Fiction

The Unlikely Yarn of the Dragon Lady (2nd place)
Sharon J. Mondragon
Kregel Publications

Novella

Abort (WINNER)
C. D. Hulen
C. D. Hulen Publisher

Made-to-Order Christmas (3rd place)
Dana R. Lynn
Blessed Publishing

New Wine Transportation Company (2nd place)
Heather Norman Smith
Ambassador International

General Fiction

Keeping Bailey
Dan Walsh
Bainbridge Press

Mercy’s Song (2nd place)
Sarah Hanks
SonFlower Books

The Nature of Small Birds (WINNER)
Susie Finkbeiner
Revell/Baker Publishing Group

The Sound the Sun Makes (3rd place)
Buck Storm
Kregel Publishing

Historical/Biblical Fiction

Easton at Christmastide (2nd place)
Rebecca Price Janney
Elk Lake Publishing

The Finder of Forgotten Things (3rd place)
Sarah Loudin Thomas
Bethany House

This Hallowed Ground
Donna E. Lane
Bear’s Place Publishing

Whom Gods Destroy (WINNER)
Vincent B. Davis II
Thirteenth Press

Contemporary Women’s Fiction

Bridges (WINNER)
Deborah Raney
Raney Day Press

Butterfly Cottage (2nd place)
Carrie Fancett Pagels
Hearts Overcoming Press 

Every Window Filled with Light
Sheila Stovall
Elk Lake Publishing

Facing the Dawn (3rd place)
Cynthia Ruchti
Revell/Baker Publishing Group

Historical Romance

Along a Storied Trail
Ann H. Gabhart
Revell Books/Baker Publishing Group

Endless Mercy
Kimberley Woodhouse, Tracie Peterson
Bethany House Publishers/Baker Publishing Group

Maggie’s Strength (2nd place)
Pegg Thomas
Spinner of Yarns Publishing

Painted Memories
A. M. Heath
Independently Published

Sadie (3rd place TIED)
Shanna Hatfield
Wholesome Hearts Publishing

Sarah’s Choice (WINNER)
Pegg Thomas
Spinner of Yarns Publishing

Sunny
Jennifer Lynn Cary
Tandem Services Press

The Indebted Earl
Erica Vetsch
Kregel Publications

Through the Lettered Veil (3rd place TIED)
Candace West
Lost Creek Press

To Find Her Place
Susan Anne Mason
Bethany House Publishers/Baker Publishing Group

Contemporary Romance

Anchor My Heart
Sara Beth Williams
Anaiah Press

Cake That! (3rd place)
Heather Greer
Scrivenings Press

Love’s Dwelling (2nd place)
Kelly Irvin
Zondervan

Royally Confused
Jill Boyce
Winged Publications

Royally Engaged
Jill Boyce
Winged Publications

The Billionaire’s Secret (WINNER)
Meghann Whistler
Independently Published

Mystery/Suspense

Blueberry Bungalow (2nd place)
Konnie Viner
Redemption Press

Crosshairs (WINNER)
Patricia Bradley
Revell/Baker Publishing Group

Hoax
Leanna Sain
Lamplighter Suspense/Iron Stream Media

Obsession
Patricia Bradley
Revell/Baker Publishing Group

Operation Music Man
Jennifer Haynie
Independently Published

Poisoned (3rd place)
Patricia Hartman
E A Books

The Scandal of Mercy
Dan Walsh
Bainbridge Press

Romantic Suspense

Abducted in Alaska
Darlene L. Turner
Love Inspired Suspense/Harlequin

Bridge of Gold
Kimberley Woodhouse
Barbour Publishing

Lethal Coverup (3rd place)
Darlene L. Turner
Love Inspired Suspense/Harlequin

Protecting Her Witness (WINNER)
Sarah Hamaker
Seshua Press

Secret Presence
Darlia Sawyer
Winged Publications

Unknown Threat (2nd place)
Lynn H. Blackburn
Revell/Baker Publishing Group

Speculative Fiction

Beneath the Deep (2nd place)
Andrea Chatman
Elk Lake Publishing

Domestic Enemies (THIRD PLACE)
Kent Wyatt
Winged Publications

Tempest {WINNER}
C J Campbell
Iron Stream Media

The Chase
Bradley Caffee
Mountain Brook Fire/Mountain Brook Ink

Book of the Year Winners

Book of the Year – Children

Children’s Bible Stories for Bedtime – by Julie Lavendar

Book of the Year – Fiction

Abort by C.D. Hulen

Book of the year – Nonfiction

Discipled Leader by Preston Poore

Unfortunate Homecoming: Book Review

About the Book

Book: Unfortunate Homecoming

Author: Sherri Wilson Johnson

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romantic Suspense

Release date: April 5, 2022

Unfortunate Homecoming final 11.7.21

Renovating the old family home and living on the quiet Magnolia River in Magnolia Springs, Alabama sounded perfect to Shaun Bartley. But when trespassing treasure hunters threaten not only his life but his ex-wife’s life too, will he fight for what is his or forfeit the fortune in order to save their lives?

After ten years on the Okefenokee Swamp as a fishing guide, Shaun Bartley returns home to conduct tours on the Magnolia River and to renovate his great great-grandfather’s old home. When Deputy Fire Marshal and volunteer fire fighter Sierra Beaumont, Shaun’s ex-wife, warns him about deadly treasure hunters who will kill for a chance to explore his property, he thinks she’s trying to run him out of town. When he discovers she’s pregnant with twins by her recently deceased second husband, Shaun can’t help but want to be there for her. But Sierra’s heart has been broken twice, and she’d rather raise the children alone than be abandoned again.

Shaun must deal with his past and find a way for Sierra to forgive him or risk losing any chance he may have at winning back her heart. Since keeping her safe means keeping her far from his home and the trespassers, yet she is the Fire Marshal assigned to his case, it will take a miracle for them to survive.

Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts

This is a new author to me. I’m all about a good romantic suspense novel though and this one didn’t disappoint. The poor couple barely had time to sit back and relax as they were assaulted from all sides.

What began as a bitter reunion between a formerly married couple morphed into rekindling of romantic feelings. While I lean toward romantic stories that move at a slower pace, this romantic arc flows nicely throughout. I think that because they’d been previously married, coupled with the amount of emotional stress and danger they endured, their feelings were quite magnified.

I thought the mystery that evolved was really fun! I loved finding out all of the clues as the characters discovered everything.

This story provided a great blend of romance, action, mystery and faith and I really enjoyed it.

About the Author

2017-kjp-2 small

Sherri Wilson Johnson is an Inspirational Romance novelist and graphic designer. She lives in Georgia with her husband and their two dogs, and they are empty-nesters. Sherri loves spending time with family, vacationing at the beach, curling up with a good book or working on her current work-in-progress. She dreams of a second home on some beach somewhere some day, where she can plot romantically suspenseful novels all day and night.

More from Sherri

Unfortunate Homecoming is comprised of many of my favorite things: Historic houses, a water source (river, lake or the ocean—it doesn’t matter!), men with beards, strong female heroines who get things done while still being tender, a murder or crime of some sort, and faith! Oh, and a secret that takes until the end of the book to figure out. I love a good mystery and a page-turning suspense. I hope this story is that for you!

This is book three in my Jeopardized Reunions series, which is set in the Mobile Bay area of Alabama. This particular story is set in Magnolia Springs, Alabama, a gorgeous, quaint town with less than 1,000 residents. It’s a dreamy place that I was fortunate enough to visit while on my vacation in August of 2021, and I will return there next week for a book signing at the local library.

My heroine is a Deputy Fire Marshall and a Lieutenant in the Magnolia Springs Volunteer Fire Department. I was thrilled when a Lieutenant who helped me with my research invited me for a tour of the actual fire department in my book. What was even more exciting was the fact that while I was there on the tour, they got a call and left me at the station! I promise I didn’t get into too much trouble, haha! The smalltown charm was definitely present and so authentic that day.

You can see my pictures and video from my visit here: https://www.instagram.com/p/CSuoaEVp53p/

I hope you will consider checking out Unfortunate Homecoming and the other books in the series, all set on Mobile Bay and all written as standalones. The common thread? They are all reunion romances. So while my characters have a past that tore them apart, they have the promise of a future.

I’d love it of you’d follow me on social media and join my subscriber list. I’m always excited to hear from readers!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 11

Life, love, writing, April 11

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 12

Texas Book-aholic, April 13

Inklings and notions, April 14

An Author’s Take, April 15

Blogging With Carol, April 15

For Him and My Family, April 16

deb’s Book Review, April 17

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 18

Older & Smarter?, April 19

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 20

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, April 21 (Author Interview)

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 21

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 23

Simple Harvest Reads, April 24 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sherri is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1c94f/unfortunate-homecoming-celebration-tour-giveaway

Book Review and Giveaway: Death Valley Hideout

Death Valley Hideout

About the Book

Book: Death Valley Hideout

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre: Christian fiction

Release date: April 26, 2022

DV#4 cover, death valley hideout

Running from a murderer

with only the desert as refuge…

Placed in WITSEC while his brother testifies against a terrifying criminal, Tony Ortega must guard his young niece and nephew from the hit man hunting for them. Death Valley local Willow Duke’s hideout might just be the difference between the little family’s life or death. When bullets start flying, can they thwart a killer long enough to survive and become a family for real?

Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts

I really enjoyed this entire series, and highly recommend it.

This fourth installment leads with Willow, the sister of Austin and Levi, characters from the previous books in the series. It was fun and refreshing to get a female lead this time around.

As always, Dana’s pacing is superb, and this book is no exception. We begin with a fast paced action scene, an attempted kidnapping gone completely wrong, and from there it’s nothing but edge-of-your-seat, read-until-you-can’t-keep-your-eyes-open fun.

If you like romance, suspense, and action, with a little faith added in, you’ll love this entire series. Highly recommended.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below!

If you are as intrigued as I was by this series, check out my other book reviews.

Framed in Death Valley: coming soon

Missing in the Desert:

Death Valley Double Cross

Death Valley Hideout

About the Author

USA Today graphic

Dana Mentink is a USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author as well as a two-time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, and the recipient of a Holt Medallion. She’s written over fifty titles in the suspense, lighthearted romance and mystery genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, Harlequin Heartwarming, and Poisoned Pen Press. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

More from Dana

Wooty woo! We’re back in Death Valley again! So excited about this fourth book in the series because Papa Bear and I have actually returned to this amazing place. (Our previous return trip was stalled for a while due to the virus that shall not be named!) People have asked me, “Why do you love Death Valley so much?” I can only respond that you just have to go there to understand. Is it the vastness of the place? The enormous topographical variety? Maybe it’s the profound quietness that permeates the national park and environs. Then again, it might be the panorama of nighttime stars. (Death Valley National Park is a certified International Dark Sky Park due to its limited light pollution.) Could it be the tenacity of people who live there and survive the one hundred twenty plus degree temperatures in the summer? And how about those animals? The Death Valley pupfish is a teeny little endangered fish that lives in precisely one spot on the globe (Death Valley) and only two places within that range, Salt Creek and Cottonball Marsh. Imagine that! So why set a six book series in Death Valley? Because there’s no more hostile and incredible place I can think of. I hope you will enjoy taking a fictional trip with me there too. Enjoy the adventure, reader friends!

Blog Stops

Remembrancy, April 21

Texas Book-aholic, April 21

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, April 22

Bigreadersite, April 22

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 23

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, April 23

Life, Love, Writing, April 24

For Him and My Family, April 24

Betti Mace, April 25

Inklings and notions, April 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 26

EmpowerMoms, April 26

deb’s Book Review, April 27

Blogging With Carol, April 27

For the Love of Literature, April 28

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 28

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 29

Simple Harvest Reads, April 29 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 30

Vicarious Living, April 30

Bizwings Blog, May 1

Blossoms and Blessings, May 1

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, May 2

Paula’s Persuasion, May 2

Labor Not in Vain, May 3

Through the Fire Blogs, May 3

Pause for Tales, May 4

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, May 4

To Everything There Is A Season, May 4

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize package of the first four books in the series-Framed in Death Valley, Missing in the Desert, Death Valley Doublecross and Death Valley Hideout (Paperback for U.S. Only) and a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1d0af/death-valley-hideout-celebration-tour-giveaway

Book review and Giveaway: Death Valley Double Cross

Death Valley Doublecross

About the Book

Book: Death Valley Double Cross

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre: Inspirational Suspense

Release date: February 22, 2022

DV#3 Death Valley Doublecross cover

A killer seeking revenge

will stop at nothing to get it…

Pilar Jefferson is shocked to learn that her supposedly deceased father is alive and has been in prison—and now his ruthless former partner is after her. Fleeing on her wedding day was the best way to protect her loved ones. But now with her mother held for ransom and her ex-fiancé, Austin Duke, stumbling back into her life, can she keep everyone safe—and escape an assassin?

From Love Inspired Suspense: Courage. Danger. Faith.

Desert Justice

Book 1: Framed in Death Valley
Book 2: Missing in the Desert
Book 3: Death Valley Double Cross
Book 4: Death Valley Hideout

Click here to get your copy!

My Thoughts

I have thoroughly enjoyed this entire series. This third installment has been my favorite thus far. Dana’s pacing is masterful, and one thing you can always count on is a high stakes, fast-paced action scene to kick the story into high gear right off the bat. I love it. You’re immediately pulled in and can’t stop turning pages.

This installment involves Austin, one of the brothers. He has become my favorite hero of all the heroes so far in the series because he’s broken and in need of fixing. But the beautiful thing about Austin is that he knows this already and he is in the process of working on himself. This isn’t something I see a lot and when it does show up in a character, they’re fixing themselves near the end of the book. But early on, we see Austin actively working on himself.

Of course, what would Christian romantic suspense be without a faith arc? I love how that was woven in subtly, but still present and still relevant to he characters and their lives.

This is a fantastic second chance romance, full of action, suspense, and danger. And as always, Dana’s descriptions of Death Valley are breathtaking. I highly recommend not only Death Valley Double Cross but the entire series. I am working my way through it as I write this.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway below!

If you are as intrigued as I was, check out the rest of my book reviews.

Framed in Death Valley: Coming soon

Missing in the Dessert

Death Valley Double Cross

Death Valley Hideout: Coming soon

About the Author

Author bio with background

Dana Mentink is a USA Today and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author as well as a two time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, and a Holt Medallion winner. She is the Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of over fifty titles in the suspense and lighthearted romance genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, Harlequin Heartwarming and Poisoned Pen Press. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

More from Dana

I remember standing on the edge of the lookout and gazing into the wonder that is Artist’s Palette in Death Valley. Artist’s Drive, which takes you to this breathtaking view, rises above Badwater Basin (the lowest spot in North America) and then meanders along twisting canyons and hills until it brings you to this popular tourist stop. The premier view is a place called Artist’s palette. It’s a sprawling pocket of color, hues of rose, ochre, green and gold tucked in the rippling landscape and teased to life by the desert sun. Isn’t that just like God? To lead us to surprises and wonders that await us in a sometimes hostile world? Every day we spent in Death Valley held a surprise, from the rocks that move mysteriously across the sands to the towering twists and turns of 20 Mule Team Canyon. There are only two things to do with a wonderous place like that…enjoy the divine bounty, and write a novel set there so others can come along!

I hope you will enjoy this third installment in the Desert Justice series. The first is Beckett’s story and then we had quiet cowboy Levi’s adventure. Now it’s brash pilot Austin’s turn. Will he get his happy ending after being dumped at the altar and wrecking his shoulder in an accident? Turn those pages and come with me to Death Valley to find out!

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, March 29

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 29

Daysong Reflections, March 30

Texas Book-aholic, March 30

Lighthouse academy, March 31

Inklings and notions, March 31

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, April 1

Betti Mace, April 1

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, April 2

Pause for Tales, April 2

For Him and My Family, April 3

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, April 3 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, April 4

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, April 4

Locks, Hooks and Books, April 5

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, April 6

Life, Love, Writing, April 6

Bigreadersite, April 7

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, April 7

Bizwings Blog, April 8

For the Love of Literature, April 8

Blogging With Carol, April 9

HookMeInABook, April 9

Simple Harvest Reads, April 10 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Paula’s Persuasion, April 10

Blossoms and Blessings, April 11

Sodbuster Living, April 11

Labor Not in Vain, April 12

Through the fire blogs, April 12

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize package of the first three books in the series (Paperback for U.S. Only) and a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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

https://promosimple.com/ps/1c112/death-valley-double-cross-celebration-tour-giveaway

Book Review: Dial E for Endearment

Diale E for Endearment by Heidi McGill

Dial E for Endearment: Sweet Christian Contemporary Romance Novella (You Are on the Air, Book 4)

by Heidi Gray McGill 

Contemporary Christian Romance

AMAZON

About the book

As Blowing Rock, NC’s JOY Radio talk show host, Everly has discovered fulfillment, but she hasn’t found love, at least not for her—not even from her mother.

Everly Johnson is every man’s dream of the perfect date, even though her audience has never met her. As host for the EnJOYing God’s Best program on JOY Radio in Blowing Rock, North Carolina, she receives countless gifts of flowers and candy from her listeners, some callers being more ardent than others. Everly has no interest in such offerings and promptly bestows the bounty on her mother’s assisted living facility. Everly wants words–heartfelt, meaningful endearments meant for her ears only. She wants a man who will open her eyes to everything she cannot see to make her feel like she’s more than just a voice behind the microphone.

Cameron Boyd is every woman’s dream of the perfect man. He’s intelligent, has a strong work ethic and career, lives on his own, and is downright adorable. But being an introvert can make eye contact with a pretty girl a challenge, let alone saying something coherent–unless it is the one-way conversation he has each Friday with Everly Johnson. Date night for Cam involves sitting alone on his back porch overlooking the Blue Ridge Mountains while he dreams of things to say if he were ever to meet her face-to-face.

A chance meeting changes everything.

Will Cam be able to step out of his comfort zone and into the world he has only been able to envision in his mind? Will Everly trust this stranger with her life as well as her heart?

Tune into JOY Radio to find out!

My thoughts

I really enjoyed this story. The only downside I found was that it wasn’t long enough! I It was so delightful I wanted more to read!

I adored the characters. Evie was just the brightest, most wonderful girl. Her disability added to the beauty of her character. Her independence and charm and wit were perfect. I loved how well the author was able to convey everything that she experienced as a person who is blind. Really well done.

I also applaud the ability Heidi had of switching to a POV who could see without a hitch. Flawless execution. I appreciated that Cameron was introverted, as really, we don’t see as many introverted guys as heroes. There should be more of them.

I mentioned I wanted the story to be longer. The romance itself developed quickly, and I wanted a little more time spent on that development of a romantic relationship. I realize though that this book was part of a series box set and it’s possible there was a word cap on the stories included in the series.

Otherwise, beautiful writing, wonderful characters, and just a delightful, fun, positive romantic story. Thank you, Heidi, for allowing me to read an advanced copy of this story.

Pick up the story on Amazon here:
Author Heidi McGill

About the author

Whether Historical or Contemporary, you will find Heidi’s works to be true Christian Fiction, full of God’s redeeming love.

Heidi is an optimist who chooses to find the silver lining in life’s clouds of doubt. She lives with her husband of thirty years near Charlotte, NC. When she isn’t writing, you will find her outside playing with her two grandsons, walking, scrapbooking, reading, cooking, traveling, or finding an excuse to have an outing with a girlfriend.

Find out more about Heidi on her Website

%d bloggers like this: