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Lighter than Air by Linda Hoover

Posted by Julie on January 19, 2018 in encouragement, God's Word, Guest blogger, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons |

Happy New Year! Ok, I know we’re already more than two weeks into January, but I’m still asking, “Can you believe it’s 2018? Where did 2017 go?” I do love a new year, though. If you need a fresh start, another chance, or a do-over, now’s the time.

My goal for 2017 was to have my new book, Lighter Than Air, available by December. Life doesn’t always cooperate with our plans, but instead of giving up, I set a new goal. Perseverance in the face of obstacles, and prayer and belief that God will help me, make this goal and anything else possible. Isaiah 41:13 says, “For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.” I’m claiming that verse.

 

 In Lighter Than Air, my protagonist is faced with a life changing decision. Elena’s father has gambled away the estate that’s been in her family for generations. In three months they will be penniless, homeless and separated from the staff they consider family. Elena takes it to God and believes He has given her the idea to have a family camp on their estate, thereby bringing in the money they’ll need to pay the debt. Her father feels any effort is useless and refuses to help. The man holding the debt sends a saboteur to vandalize and interfere, and Elena’s neighbor and long- time friend, Justin, keeps trying to talk her out of it. Neither knows what the other will face if they’re unsuccessful. This is a time for perseverance. With the deadline for the debt looming, will their insistence on doing things their way give them both a happy ending, or destroy everything they’ve hoped for?

My new goal is to publish Lighter Than Air by the middle of February. If you’re interested in seeing how things work out for Elena and Justin, and reading their journey to the end of the book, stop by my website or follow me on my Facebook author page. I’ll be keeping readers up to date.

Thank you, Julie, for allowing me space on your blog. 😊

https://www.LindaHooverBooks.com

https://www.facebook.com/lindahooverauthor

 

 

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A Flash of Romance by Sharon Rene

Posted by Julie on January 11, 2018 in ACFW, encouragement, God's Word, Guest blogger, Julie Arduini, Writing |

A Flash of Romance by Sharon Rene

 

My name is Sharon Rene. In December, I published a collection of flash fiction stories on Kindle entitled A Flash of Romance. This was a new experience for me. I’ve recently had some publishing success in the world of flash fiction, having had six stories published by the Splickety Publishing Group. After a lot of thought and prayer, I decided to plunge into Kindle. And it was a plunge! I’m not a computer master, so Kindle didn’t prove to be as easy as I anticipated, but I persevered. The Kindle version is now available as well as a print version, and I’d love to share my stories with all of you.

A Flash of Romance by Sharon Rene

From Heathcliff to Santa, the heroes in A Flash of Romance will win your heart. Experience the magical world of mermaids and fairies then travel to the old west and the Roaring Twenties, all in less than seven thousand words. I am especially proud of Masada Whispers. In this story, I tell the fate of a young couple trapped in Masada surrounded by the Roman army. The tragic deaths of the Jews on Passover speaks to my heart, and I believe it will bring a tear to most eyes.

 

 

I am offering twelve signed copies of A Flash of Romance on Goodreads beginning January 8 and running until January 31, 2018. If you’re on Goodreads, please go to the giveaways page and sign up for my book.

 

My writing journey is just beginning. God is directing my every step, and offering needed encouragement. TouchPoint Press will publish my book of short stories for elementary age children tentatively entitled A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace sometime this year. I am excited that God has given me the honor to write for His little ones. What a precious audience.

My favorite genre to read, and to write, is young adult speculative. I am now working on my third novel in a young adult series. The Lord has not yet opened the door to publication for these books, but He has used flash fiction and short stories to encourage me along the way. I was surprised when my first flash fiction was accepted by Splickety, and I realized that God had open an unexpected door. God is good at that. Let me end this blog with some encouragement and one of my favorite Bible verses.

“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3: 20-21 (NIV)

Sharon Rene loves to write speculative young adult fiction, children’s short stories, flash fiction, and devotions. She has published a collection of flash fiction on Kindle entitled A Flash of Romance. TouchPoint press will publish her book of short stories for elementary aged children tentatively titled A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace in 2018.

She is a member of ACFW and works as an executive assistant at a major corporation.  She has a Facebook page with devotions, scripture and inspirational thoughts entitled Creative Grace with Sharon Rene and her author page is also on Facebook – Sharon Rene-Author.

www.facebook.com/creativegraceSRD

 

www.facebook.com/sharonreneauthor

 

sharonrene17@gmail.com

 

Purchase A Flash of Romance HERE

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You’re Beautiful Now Available

Posted by Julie on January 7, 2018 in About Me, encouragement, God's Word, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender, Writing |

 

You’re Beautiful Now Available

This series was inspired by our teenaged daughter Hannah after a tough transition to junior high. Instead of giving up and becoming bitter, Hannah decided to take the lessons she learned and create a series for girls her age. Julie (Hannah’s mom,) has a passion for mentoring. As she listened to Hannah create characters, Julie realized there was a message in Hannah’s work for women, too.

Each book in the Surrendering Stinkin’ Thinkin’ Series uses the theme of letting go of a lie the characters believed. There will be two key characters in each book. One, a junior high student, and the other, a woman out of school. It’s our desire to see girls of all ages (even grandmas!) to read these books and find freedom and hope in them.

Hannah created the storyline, character names and traits, plot points, and conflict. She had the vision for the cover, and directed Julie in the design. Julie wrote out Hannah’s vision and managed the writing and publishing process, staying true to Hannah’s creation. You’re Beautiful is a work of fiction, but a message of hope for you.

 

About You’re Beautiful:

Hayley Atkinson withdraws from her friends and new opportunities with the new mentoring group, Linked, after she is told a lie that she believes is true about herself. Sabrina Wayson is a mentor in Linked who feels she can’t help encourage girls because she’s struggling as much as they are. Can they surrender the lies and find freedom?

 

You’re Beautiful is now available for all eReaders. Print version is coming later this month. Stay tuned!

 

Hannah and I believe in this message because we’ve lived it, and chances are, you have as well. Please read, if you like it, write a review, and tell others to do the same. Thank you!

Get You’re Beautiful HERE

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Book Review: Rule of Law by Randy Singer

Posted by Julie on January 6, 2018 in Book Review, Julie Arduini |

Book Review: Rule of Law by Randy Singer

What did the president know? And when did she know it?

For the members of SEAL Team Six, it was a rare mission ordered by the president, monitored in real time from the Situation Room. The Houthi rebels in Yemen had captured an American journalist and a member of the Saudi royal family. Their executions were scheduled for Easter Sunday. The SEAL team would break them out.

But when the mission results in spectacular failure, the finger-pointing goes all the way to the top.

Did the president play political games with the lives of U.S. service members?

Paige Chambers, a determined young lawyer, has a very personal reason for wanting to know the answer. The case she files will polarize the nation and test the resiliency of the Constitution. The stakes are huge, the alliances shaky, and she will be left to wonder if the saying on the Supreme Court building still holds true.

Equal justice under law.

It makes a nice motto. But will it work when one of the most powerful people on the planet is also a defendant?

***

If you enjoy fast-paced legal thrillers laced with politics, Rule of Law is for you. Not only is it those things, it’s from the Law and Order playbook with a “ripped from the headlines” plot, intended or not, it was eerie how this fiction book seemed to be real.

Paige is a cautious lawyer who has opened herself up to a new relationship. Through a series of fast and shocking events, she’s thrust in the national spotlight when she files a case that could lead her to the very top of the government. There are a lot of people who don’t want to see this case go forward, and honestly, Paige is nervous as well.

This is well-written and contained elements that go against the traditional thrillers I’ve read. The characters are multi-dimensional and there is a rich secondary cast that don’t overtake Paige’s place. It was my first Randy Singer read, but it won’t be my last.

I highly recommend.

To purchase Rule of Law, click here.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Sherri Stewart: A Day in the Life of a Fool

Posted by Julie on January 4, 2018 in encouragement, God's Word, Guest blogger, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, Writing |

A Day in the Life of a Fool

Remember that verse in I Corinthians 1: 27 where God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise? I am so glad God chose me as one of His little fools.

It was colder than most January days in Calgary, Alberta—so cold that I was reluctant to drive my old Volvo too far from home, but I hated to miss the first day of the new semester. After dropping my son off at the babysitter’s, I decided it would be safer to take the subway, something I had never done before. A small voice inside reminded me that whenever I do something for the first time, I make mistakes, but I told myself that taking a subway wasn’t rocket science, was it?

I bought my ticket, but knew I would have to transfer downtown to another train that would take me to the university. I wasn’t sure how to do that, but surely someone would help.

When I arrived downtown, I jumped off the train and was waiting for the corresponding one to arrive when a thought struck me. I had left a pot of potpourri simmering on the stove. Great. Why hadn’t I thought to turn the stove off? It had been two hours, and soon the water would evaporate, the pot would catch on fire, and we’d lose everything. I thought of my poor dog as I dug a quarter out of my purse to call a neighbor with a key to my house when I realized my purse was missing. (this was before cell phones). I’d left my purse on the train. No car, no keys, one quarter.

I prayed for God’s help.

Taking a deep breath, I called my next-door neighbor who wasn’t home, but my husband was in town, which was rare since he worked for a hockey team that was always on the road. Bobby was gracious as always and didn’t reprimand me for being an idiot.

While I waited for him to pick me up, I stopped the conductor of an arriving train and told him about my purse. He said he would alert the other drivers to be on the lookout.

As Bobby and I raced toward our house, I scanned the sky for rising smoke in the northeast. Bobby reminded me that we would have to cancel our credit cards and get a locksmith to unlock my car since we didn’t have an extra key.

No smoke billowed out of the house, but I didn’t wait for the car to slow down before I jumped out, opened the garage door, and ran into the kitchen. The red light on the stove was still on, the burner under the small pot was red hot, but the potpourri floating inside the pot wasn’t simmering. I dipped my finger in the brown liquid. It was ice cold. ICE COLD.

The same God who parted the Red Sea and made the sun stand still made the liquid on a red-hot burner ice cold.

But that’s not all. A few hours after I cancelled my credit cards, I received a call from the transit company. They found my purse in a plastic bag. Someone had taken the cash, but left everything else—my passport and visa, my checkbook, credit cards, keys, and driver’s license. I called the bank to see if they would disregard my request to cancel my card,s but knew it was a lost cause. The woman at the bank said that the system had gone down after I called so my credit cards were still good.

I made a lot of mistakes on that cold January day, but God didn’t reprimand me. I was doing enough of that myself. He made simmering water cold and made the bank’s system stand still for a few hours for me. Instead of being the worst day of my life, God gave me a story to tell.

 

 

 

Newly retired from teaching, Sherri Stewart is transitioning into full-time writing and editing, but she makes time for her other love—spending time with her family, especially with her 89-year-old mother. She also enjoys travelling to locations to research her books. Israel is her next destination, a trip she has looked forward to for years. Sherri lives with her husband, Bobby, with whom she is celebrating her fortieth wedding anniversary. Son Joshua works at Disney and keeps her laughing. She hones her craft through organizations such as Word Weavers International, American Christian Fiction Writers, and Christian Pen.

 

Social Media Contacts

www.stewartwriting.com.

Amazon Author Page

https://www.amazon.com/author/sherristewart/

Email

sherristewart2@yahoo.com

Website

www.stewartwriting.com/blog

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/sherristewartauthor/

Twitter

https://twitter.com/machere

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/758893.Sherri_Stewart/blog

 

Books by Sherri Stewart

Come Out of Hiding

Romance on the Run

A Well-Founded Fear of Death

Stranded with Pearls

Get Your Kiss on Route 66

Très Chic

Inn Danger

Last Chance Island

The Good Little Nurse

Call Me Jane by Sherri Stewart

Call Me Jane

Her feet are wet from walking on water. Why is she still wearing her shoes? That was her first question when the fugue cleared. But she has more pressing questions, such as —who is she, where does she live, and how did she end up on Peachtree Street on a cold November night wearing nothing but a nightgown?

With Officer Kyle Rossi’s help, Jane, as she prefers to be called, begins the journey to discover her identity. But the more she learns about the real Aubrey Sutherland, the more she realizes she can’t trust anyone, especially those closest to her, but Jane also learns that a concussion might be the best thing that ever happened to her.

 

http://amzn.to/2j3qeBM

 

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ACFW Fiction Finder: January New Releases

Posted by Julie on January 3, 2018 in ACFW, Guest blogger, Julie Arduini, Writing |

January 2018 New Releases

More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.


Contemporary Romance:

Her Handyman Hero by Lorraine Beatty — Reid Blackthorn arrives in Dover on a personal mission—to make sure his terminally ill brother gets a chance to meet his daughter. Deceiving little Lily’s guardian isn’t his intention. Yet once Tori Montgomery mistakes Reid for her new handyman, he knows it’s the only way to be close to his niece. Tori is honoring her friend’s last wish by keeping Lily away from her father’s family. And once she learns who Reid truly is, she realizes there’s too much at stake—including custody of Lily—for her to fall for the former DEA agent. But in keeping a promise, is she losing out on her chance for a happily-ever-after? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])

Beneath the Summer Sun by Kelly Irvin — It’s been four years since Jennie’s husband died in a farming accident. Long enough that the elders in her Amish community think it’s time to marry again for the sake of her seven children. What they don’t know is that grief isn’t holding her back from a new relationship. Fear is. A terrible secret in her past keeps her from moving forward. Meanwhile, Leo Graber nurtures a decades-long love for Jennie, but guilt plagues him—guilt for letting Jennie marry someone else and guilt for his father’s death on a hunting trip many years ago. How could anyone love him again—and how could he ever take a chance to love in return? (Contemporary Romance from HarperCollins Christian Publishing)

Ain’t Misbehaving by Marji Laine — True, Annalee’s crime amounted to very little, but not in terms of community service hours. Her probation officer encouraged her with a promise of an easy job in an air-conditioned downtown environment. She didn’t expect her role to be little better than a janitor at an after-school daycare in the worst area of town. Carlton Whelen hides behind the nickname of CJ so people won’t treat him like the wealthy son of the Whelen Foundation director. Working at the foundation’s after-school program delights him and annoys his business-oriented father. When a gorgeous prima donna is assigned to his team, he not only cringes at her mistakes but also has to avoid the attraction that builds from the first time he sees her. (Contemporary Romance from Write Integrity Press)

Finding Grace by Melanie D. Snitker — Single dad Tyler Martin can’t be more grateful to the woman who finds his missing daughter. Even though he feels a spark between them, falling in love is a risk he shouldn’t take. Too bad chance encounters and his stubborn heart keep trying to convince him otherwise. After escaping a nightmarish relationship, Beth Davenport is content with her safe and blessedly normal life. Yet something about Tyler and his adorable daughter makes her wish for more. With the walls around her heart finally starting to crumble, she’s afraid of a future she can’t predict. Can they let go of their fear and trust God to lead them to the love they desperately need? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)

Marrying Mandy by Melanie D. Snitker — Mandy Hudson swore she’d never marry. Abandoned by her parents and raised by her grandparents, she has a hard time trusting that real love will last. When her grandmother dies, Mandy’s shocked to discover a stipulation in the will. Considering marriage to her best friend may be the only way to keep her family’s beloved bed-and-breakfast. The loss of his job threatens Preston Yarrow’s shaky financial stability. Besides, he can’t watch his best friend give up the only real home she’s ever known. Frustrated by Mandy’s stubborn refusal to let him help, he’s certain they are stronger together than they are apart. A marriage of convenience might be crazy… or an answer to both their prayers. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)


Historical:

Son of Promise by Caryl McAdoo — Can a wife find the grace to forgive when her husband’s withheld the truth? Travis Buckmeyer has a secret son, and the morning’s come to tell his sweet wife. He hates breaking Emma Lee’s heart. She promised him one ten years ago, but hasn’t been blessed to carry a baby to term. Every miscarriage made the telling harder, but now his clock’s run out. He’s going for his son, praying he won’t lose her.
Cody knows who his mother claims his father is, but he’s only interested in getting sprung from reform school then boosting enough from the do-gooder to bust out on his own.
Can Travis find redemption, Emma Lee forgiveness, or Cody the love he’s been longing for? (Historical, Independently Published)


Historical Romance:

Hearts Entwined by Mary Connealy, Melissa Jagears, Regina Jennings, and Karen Witemeyer — Four top historical romance novelists team up in this new collection to offer stories of love and romance with a twist of humor. In Karen Witemeyer’s “The Love Knot,” Claire Nevin gets the surprise of her life awaiting her sister’s arrival by train. Mary Connealy’s “The Tangled Ties That Bind” offers the story of two former best friends who are reunited while escaping a stampede. Regina Jennings offers “Bound and Determined,” where a most unusual trip across barren Oklahoma plains is filled with adventure, romance, and . . . camels? And Melissa Jagears’ “Tied and True” entertains with a tale of two hearts from different social classes who become entwined at a cotton thread factory. (Historical Romance from Bethany House [Baker])



A Bouquet of Brides Collection by Mary Davis, Kathleen E. Kovach, Paula Moldenhauer, Suzanne Norquist, Donita Kathleen Paul, Donna Schlachter, and Pegg Thomas — For seven bachelors, this bouquet of brides means a happily ever after. Meet seven American women who were named for various flowers but struggle to bloom where God planted them. Can love help them grow to their full potential? (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)



A Mother For His Family by Susanne Dietze
Lady Helena Stanhope’s reputation is in tatters…and she’s lost any hope for a “respectable” ton marriage. An arranged union is the only solution. But once Helena weds formidable Scottish widower John Gordon, Lord Ardoch, and encounters his four mischievous children, she’s determined to help her new, ever-surprising family. Even if she’s sure love is too much to ask for.
All John needs is someone to mother his admittedly unruly brood. He never imagined that beautiful Lady Helena would be a woman of irresistible spirit, caring and warmth. Or that facing down their pasts would give them so much in common. Now, as danger threatens, John will do whatever it takes to convince Helena their future together—and his love—are for always. (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])



His Forgotten Fiancee by Evelyn M. Hill — Liza Fitzpatrick is stunned when her fiancé finally arrives in Oregon City — with amnesia. Matthew Dean refuses to honor a marriage proposal he doesn’t recall making, but Liza needs his help now to bring in the harvest, and maybe she can help him remember… Matthew is attracted to the spirited Liza, and as she tries to help him regain his old memories, the new ones they’re creating together start to make him feel whole. Even as he falls for her again, though, someone’s determined to keep them apart. Will his memory return in time to save their future? (Historical Romance from Love Inspired [Harlequin])



A Song Unheard by Roseanna M. White — Willa Forsythe is both a violin prodigy and top-notch thief, which makes her the perfect choice for a critical task at the outset of World War I–to secure a crucial cypher key from a famous violinist currently in Wales. Lukas De Wilde has enjoyed the life of fame he’s won–until now, when being recognized nearly gets him killed. Everyone wants the key to his father’s work as a cryptologist. And Lukas fears that his mother and sister, who have vanished in the wake of the German invasion of Belgium, will pay the price. The only distraction he finds from his worry is in meeting the intriguing and talented Willa Forsythe. But danger presses in from every side, and Willa knows what Lukas doesn’t–that she must betray him and find that key, or her own family could pay the same price his surely has. (Historical Romance from Bethany House [Baker])


Mystery:

Surgeon’s Choice by Richard L. Mabry, MD — Dr. Ben Merrick thought his biggest problem was getting his fiancé’s divorced parents into the same room for the wedding–and then, people started dying. (Mystery, Independently Published through White Glove)


Romantic Suspense:

Innocent Lies by Robin Patchen — Desperate to be safe from the man who held her captive and ruined her life, Kelsey must ensure her child is protected before she can take her enemy on. But a string of bad luck gets her arrested and lands her face-to-face with the only man she’s ever loved—the only man who can destroy all her plans. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

Cold Truth by Susan Sleeman — When research chemist Kiera Underwood receives the cryptic phone call about her twin brother, she tries to contact him to no avail. Her twin sense tingles, warning her that something is wrong. Kiera’s not prepared when an attempt is made on her life and Blackwell Tactical operative Cooper Ashcroft delivers her second shock of the day. Someone killed the supervisor at the research lab where her brother works and stole a deadly biotoxin. The main suspect? Her brother, and Blackwell Tactical has been hired to bring him in. If that wasn’t shocking enough, she’s suspected of colluding with him. Setting out to prove herself and her brother is innocent, she is almost abducted before Ashcroft rescues her. He’s faced with the reality that she’s telling the truth and someone has likely abducted her brother—perhaps killed him—and now Kiera’s very life is in danger, too. (Romantic Suspense, Independently Published)

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