Monday, October 20, 2014

KEEPERS OF THE COVENANT Kindle Giveaway and Live Author Chat with Lynn Austin!

Lynn Austin is back with the next book in The Restoration Chronicles series, Keepers of the Covenant. Austin weaves together the struggles and stories of both Jews and Gentiles, creating a tapestry of faith and doubt, love and loss. Here, the Old Testament comes to life, demonstrating the everlasting hope displayed in God's unwavering love for His people.



Lynn is celebrating with a Kindle HDX giveaway and a live author chat webcast on October 21st.



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One winner will receive:


  • A Kindle HDX

  • Keepers of the Covenant by Lynn Austin


Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 21st. Winner will be announced at the Keepers of the Covenant LIVE webcast event on October 21st. Connect with Lynn for a fascinating evening centered around God's unwavering love for His people. She'll be hosting a Biblical fiction book club discussion, giving away prizes, answering your questions, offering an exclusive peek at the next book in The Restoration Chronicles, and much more!






So grab your copy of Keepers of the Covenant and join Lynn and friends on the evening of October 21st for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)


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Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP today by signing up for a reminder. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 21st!

Keepers of the Covenant by Lynn Austin

Keepers of the Covenant
by Lynn Austin
Biblical Fiction
Baker Publishing Group

Lynn Austin once again brings the Old Testament to life in Keepers of the Covenant, book two in the Restoration Chronicles.
In one life-changing moment, the lives of the Jewish exiles in Babylon are thrown into confusion and despair when a decree arrives from the king's palace in Susa. It calls for the annihilation of every Jewish man, woman, and child throughout the empire on the thirteenth day of Adar, in less than one year. Ezra, a quiet Jewish scholar and teacher, is suddenly called upon to lead the community as they seek God for a reason for this catastrophe. When a second decree arrives, authorizing them to fight back, Ezra is thrust into the role of military leader as they defend themselves against their enemies.
When the battles come to an end, Ezra's brother Jude is dead and Ezra is required by the Law he so diligently studies to marry Jude's widow, Devorah, and provide an heir. Fatherhood changes Ezra, and he asks God to make a way for him and the other exiles to leave Babylon for good and return to Jerusalem. His prayers are answered and the exiles move to Judea to revitalize worship at the temple---but the fight to keep God's Law is never easy. As more and more of his community are tempted, a new battle emerges . . . this one for the survival of God's covenant and the souls of His chosen faithful.




Bestselling author Lynn Austin has sold more than one million copies of her books worldwide. She is an eight-time Christy Award winner for her historical novels, as well as a popular speaker at retreats and conventions. Lynn and her husband have raised three children and live near Chicago.

Find Lynn online: websiteFacebook








Margie's Comments: Keepers of the Covenant by Lynn Austin is the second book in the Restoration Chronicles. I don't usually like to read books in a series out of order. While there were some instances where I felt a little lost, wondering if I should have read the first book—Return to Me—the book can stand alone as a very good read. I've always loved the story of Esther, but I've never read about the millions of Jews who were directly affected by Haman's attempt to wipe out their nation (other than what is recorded in the book of Esther). The author's characterizations and her choice of characters made the people and this time in biblical history come alive. While there are several themes, the one that touched me most was the theme of faith in God, which includes God's faithfulness to mankind. True biblical faith believes in God and who He is as revealed in Scripture and in our life experiences no matter if we can sense Him near or if we can understand His working. It means staying true and obedient to Him even if it's the hardest thing we've ever done. Amina, a Gentile-born believer in God, summarizes faith when her husband was faced with possibly having to divorce her. He says he'll take her and go live somewhere else if the worst happened. Amina says, "I don't think faith works that way, Reuben. Before we can ask for mercy, we have to be prepared to obey the Almighty One no matter what happens. Abraham didn't know that God would provide a ram in the thicket in place of Isaac. He was willing to obey and sacrifice the son he loved no matter what." And that's exactly what faith is—trusting and obeying God, even when it doesn't make sense. God is good, no matter what. Keepers of the Covenant and the Restoration Chronicles are excellent biblical fiction that I can highly recommend to fans of this genre. 

Verse of the Day

Don't fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life. Summing it all up, friends, I'd say you'll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious--the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies. (Philippians 4:6–9 MSG)

Friday, October 17, 2014

Verse of the Day

“I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.

“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!” John 15:1–7 nlt  

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Verse of the Day

But those who trust [wait, hope] in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31 nlt

Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord. Psalm 27:14 nlt


Put your hope in the Lord. Travel steadily along his path. He will honor you by giving you the land. You will see the wicked destroyed. Psalm 37:34 nlt

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Thunder by Bonnie S. Calhoun



This week, the


is introducing


Revell (October 7, 2014)


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Bonnie S. Calhoun is Owner/Director of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance, owner/publisher of Christian Fiction Online Magazine, Northeast Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), and the ACFW 2011 Mentor of the Year.

She loves to write, but it doesn't make her happy unless there are the three B's...body count, blood, and blowing things up. She also has mad skills at coding HTML, and website design. And she lives in a log cabin in the woods with fifteen acres and a pond full of bass, though she'd rather buy fish at the grocery store. Bonnie shares her domain with a husband, a dog, and two cats, all of whom think she’s waitstaff!


Her sites are:
http://bonniescalhoun.com
https://www.facebook.com/bscalhoun
https://www.facebook.com/bonniescalhoun
https://www.goodreads.com/BonnieSCalhoun
http://www.pinterest.com/bonniecalhoun/
https://www.youtube.com/user/BonnieCalhoun


ABOUT THE BOOK


In post-apocalyptic America, Selah Chavez is crouched in long grass on a shore littered with the rusted metal remnants of a once-great city. It is the day before her eighteenth Born Remembrance, and she is hunting, though many people refuse to eat animal flesh, tainted by radiation during the Time of Sorrows. What Selah's really after are Landers, mysterious people from a land across the big water who survive the delirium-inducing passage in small boats that occasionally crash against the shoreline. She knows she should leave the capture to the men, but Landers bring a good price from the Company and are especially prized if they keep the markings they arrive with.

Everything falls to pieces when the Lander Selah catches is stolen by her brothers--and Selah wakes up the next morning to find the Lander's distinctive mark has suddenly appeared on her own flesh. Once the hunter, Selah is now one of the hunted, and she knows only one person who can help her--Bohdi Locke, the Lander her brothers hope to sell.




With evocative descriptions of a strange new world that combines elements of scientific advances, political intrigue, and wilderness survival, Bonnie S. Calhoun weaves a captivating tale of a world more like our own than we may want to admit.


You can read Tremors, the prequel to the series for FREE on Amazon HERE.


If you'd like to read the first chapter of Thunder (Stone Braide Chronicles), go HERE


Margie's Comments: When I read and reviewed Tremors several weeks ago, I fell in love with Selah  Chavez and the world the author set up for this post-apocalyptic series. So it was with anticipation that I began reading Thunder. And I've not been disappointed. Bonnie has drawn well-developed characters in a well-thought-out plot. Some of the plot twists I saw coming, some I didn't. And true to Bonnie's style you don't even get through the first chapter before the dead bodies start building up. I enjoy most speculative fiction, but I love when it is crossed with suspense and mystery. So I am looking forward to reading the rest of this series, Stone Braide Chronicles.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Verse of the Day

“Give us this day our daily bread.” (Matthew 6:11)

Once I was young, and now I am old. Yet I have never seen the godly abandoned or their children begging for bread. (Psalm 37:25 NLT)

My God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19 ESV)

Be satisfied with your present [circumstances and with what you have]; for He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!] (Hebrews 13:5 AMP)

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Covered Deep by Brandy Vallance


About the Book:
Bianca Marshal is holding out for the perfect husband. Finding a man that meets the requirements of her "must-have" list in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains has proven impossible. Bianca's mama insists that there's no such thing as a perfect true love, and that Bianca's ideal man is pure fiction. On the eve of her twenty-fifth birthday, Bianca discovers a devastating statistic: her chance of marrying is now only eighteen percent. Unwilling to accept spinsterhood, Bianca enters an essay contest that propels her into a whirlwind search for her soulmate. Via the opulence of London and the mysteries of the Holy Land, Bianca's true love will be revealed, but not without a heavy price.






About the Author:
Brandy Vallance fell in love with the Victorian time period at a young age, loving the customs, manners, and especially the intricate rules of love. Since time travel is theoretically impossible, she lives in the nineteenth century vicariously through her novels. Unaccountable amounts of black tea have fueled this ambition. Brandy's love of tea can only be paralleled by her love of Masterpiece Theater Classics, deep conversations, and a good book. Brandy is the 2013 Operation First Novel winner and the 2012 winner of the ACFW Genesis Contest for historical romance. You can connect with Brandy via her website www.brandyvallance.com, Facebook, Goodreads, Pinterest, YouTube, or Twitter @BrandyVallance.



Margie's Comments: Wow! This first novel by Brandy Vallance is amazing! I love an understated romance in the style of Jane Austen. And Brandy Vallance has succeeded in The Covered Deep. Set during the Victorian Era, this book covers a good portion of the world starting in southern Ohio, moving to England, and then on to the Holy Land. I literally had to tear myself away from the story in order to get several other things on my daily to-do lists done. But I couldn't wait to get back to this well-researched, superbly written book. I can highly recommend this book, and I look forward to reading more by this author in the future.

The Sea House by Elisabeth Gifford


About the book: 
The Sea House (St. Martin’s Press, April 2014)

Scotland, 1860.
Reverend Alexander Ferguson, naive and newly-ordained, takes up his new parish, a poor, isolated patch on the Hebridean island of Harris. His time on the island will irrevocably change the course of his life, but the white house on the edge of the dunes keeps its silence long after Alexander departs. It will be more than a century before the Sea House reluctantly gives up its secrets. Ruth and Michael buy the grand but dilapidated building and begin to turn it into a home for the family they hope to have. Their dreams are marred by a shocking discovery. The tiny bones of a baby are buried beneath the house; the child's fragile legs are fused together --- a mermaid child. Who buried the bones? And why? Ruth needs to solve the mystery of her new home --- but the answers to her questions may lie in her own past.
Based on a real nineteenth-century letter to The Times in which a Scottish clergyman claimed to have seen a mermaid, The Sea House is an epic, sweeping tale of loss and love, hope and redemption, and how we heal ourselves with the stories we tell.


Purchase a copy: http://amzn.to/ZSbs53


About the Author: 

Elisabeth Gifford grew up in a vicarage in the industrial Midlands. She studied French literature and world religions at Leeds University. She is the author of The House of Hope: A Story of God's Love and Provision for the Abandoned Orphans of Chinaand has written articles for The Times and the Independent and has a Diploma in Creative Writing from Oxford OUDCE and an MA in Creative Writing from Royal Holloway College. She is married with three children. They live in Kingston on Thames but spend as much time as possible in the Hebrides.

Find Elisabeth online: websiteFacebook


Margie's Comments: I love stories that span the years, reaching into the history of an area to solve a contemporary puzzle or mystery. So when The Sea House by Elisabeth Gifford came up for review, I requested a copy. And the story didn't disappoint. Starting out in today's world, Michael and Ruth are excited about their project to fix up this old, disused house for a family and a business. But when they find the bones of the mermaid child, Ruth can't leave the questions behind. The author's gentle storytelling voice drew me into the story, and I found it very difficult to put it down. Even when it got later and later at night. The author uses a blend of the past and present to tell a tale that is woven into the culture of the islands of Scotland. The masterful plotting, characterization, and storytelling have me looking forward to reading more from this author in the future. NOTE: This book was not written or published for a strictly Christian audience, so be aware that there are some instances of strong language. 

THE SEA HOUSE Kindle Fire Giveaway from Elisabeth Gifford

Don't miss The Sea House, a stunning fiction debut from the UK. Set in a house on the windswept coast of the Outer Hebrides, Elisabeth Gifford's haunting tale effortlessly bridges a gap of more than a century. Adeptly interweaving two tales involving residents of the titular house, Gifford sets up an absorbing mystery revolving around local lore and myths about mermaids, selkies, and sealmen. Stretching seamlessly back and forth through time, layers upon layers of secrets are slowly and effectively peeled away in this evocative debut (Booklist).



Celebrate with Elisabeth by entering her Kindle giveaway!



E.Gifford, The Sea 
House Giveaway



One grand prize winner will receive:



  • A Kindle Fire

  • The Sea House by Elisabeth Gifford


Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 19th. Winner will be announced October 20th at Elisabeth's Blog.





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Watch the trailer: