Thursday, April 26, 2012

Verse of the Day

When life is heavy and hard to take, go off by yourself. Enter the silence. Bow in prayer. Don't ask questions: Wait for hope to appear. Don't run from trouble. Take it full-face. The "worst" is never the worst. Why? Because the Master won't ever walk out and fail to return. If he works severely, he also works tenderly. His stockpiles of loyal love are immense. (Lamentations 3:32 MSG)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Verse of the Day

For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment. (Luke 1:37 AMP)

Chorus by Eugene L. Peterson
Nothing is impossible when you put your trust in God;
Nothing is impossible when you're trusting in His Word.
Hearken to the voice of God to thee:
'Is there anything to hard for Me?'
Then put your trust in God alone and rest upon His Word;
For ev'rything, O ev'rything,
Yes, ev'rything is possible with God.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Verse of the Day

At a low point—one of the most difficult times he faced—in David's life, we read this: David encouraged and strengthened himself in the Lord his God. (1 Samuel 30:6 AMP)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Verse of the Day

Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield. For our heart rejoices in Him, because we trust in His holy name. Let Your lovingkindness, O LORD, be upon us, according as we have hoped in You. (Psalm 33:20–22)

Friday, April 20, 2012

The Prophet by R. J. Larson

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Bethany House Publishers (April 1, 2012)
R.J. Larson


R. J. Larson is the author of numerous devotionals featured in publications such as Women's Devotional Bible and Seasons of a Woman's Heart. She lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with her husband and their two sons. Prophet marks her debut in the fantasy genre.


Close your eyes, Ela of Parne. Close your eyes and you will see.

Ela Roeh of Parne doesn't understand why her beloved Creator, the Infinite, wants her to become His prophet. She's undignified, bad tempered, and only seventeen--not to mention that no prophet of Parne has ever been a girl. Worst of all, as the elders often warn, if she agrees to become the Infinite's prophet, Ela knows she will die young.

Istgard has turned their back on me. See the evil they do.

Yet after experiencing His presence, she can't imagine living without Him. Determined to follow the Infinite's voice, Ela accepts the sacred vinewood branch and is sent to bring the Infinite's word to a nation torn apart by war. Here she meets Kien, a young Traceland ambassador determined to bring his own justice for his oppressed people. As they form an unlikely partnership, Ela must surrender to her destiny . . . and determine how to balance the leading of her heart with the leading of the Infinite.

Will you accept the branch and speak my will? Will you be my prophet?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Prophet, go HERE.

Review to come. So far I'm loving it! 

Verse of the Day

Then Gideon and the 300 men who were with him came to the Jordan and crossed over, weary yet pursuing. (Judges 8:4)

Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary. (Galatians 6:9)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Verse of the Day

Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke fits perfectly, and the burden I give you is light." (Matthew 11:28–30 NLT)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Moonblood by Anne Elisabeth Stengl

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Bethany House Publishers (April 1, 2012)
Anne Elisabeth Stengl


Anne Elisabeth Stengl makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she enjoys her profession as an art teacher, giving private lessons from her personal studio, and teaching group classes at the Apex Learning Center. She is married to the handsome man she met at fencing class and lives with him and a gaggle of cats. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University. Heartless is her debut novel.

Anne Elisabeth is also the author of the Tales of Goldstone Wood, a series of fantasy adventure novels told in the classic Fairy Tale style.


Moonblood Draws Near, and Soon the Dragons Will Wake

Desperate to regain the trust of his kingdom, Prince Lionheart reluctantly banishes his faithful servant and only friend, Rose Red. Now she is lost in the hidden realm of Arpiar, held captive by her evil goblin father, King Vahe.

Vowing to redeem himself, Lionheart plunges into the mysterious Goldstone Wood, seeking Rose Red. In strange other worlds, Lionheart must face a lyrical yet lethal tiger, a fallen unicorn, and a goblin horde on his quest to rescue the girl he betrayed.

With the Night of Moonblood fast approaching when King Vahe seeks to wake the Dragon's sleeping children, Lionheart must discover whether or not his heart contains courage before it's too late for Rose Red . . . and all those he loves.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Moonblood, go HERE.

Review later.

Verse of the Day

Blessed be the LORD, because He has heard the voice of my supplication. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; therefore my heart exults, and with my song I shall thank Him. (Psalm 28:6–7)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Verse of the Day

Teach me Your way, O LORD, and lead me in a level path Because of my foes. . . . I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait for the LORD; be strong and let your heart take courage; yes, wait for the LORD. (Psalm 27:11–14)

Monday, April 16, 2012

The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck

 The Wedding Dress


Rachel Hauck

About the book:

One dress. Four women. An amazing destiny.

Charlotte Malone is getting married. Yet all is not settled in the heart of Birmingham's chic bridal boutique owner. Charlotte can dress any bride to perfection—except herself. When she discovers a vintage mint-condition wedding gown in a battered old trunk, Charlotte embarks on a passionate journey to discover the women who wore the gown before her.

Emily in 1912. Mary in 1939. And Hillary in 1968. Each woman teaches Charlotte something about love in her own unique way. Woven within the threads of the beautiful hundred-year-old gown is the truth about Charlotte's heritage, the power of faith, and the beauty of finding true love.

About Rachel Hauck:

Rachel Hauck is the bestselling author of Carol Award winner Sweet Caroline, and RITA Finalist Love Starts With Elle, and of the critically acclaimed fiction collaboration with multi-platinum country artist Sara Evans, The Songbird Novels.

She lives in sunny, though sometimes hurricane plagued, central Florida with her husband and their ornery pets.

Visit for more about Rachel and her books.

Rachel earned a degree in Journalism from Ohio State University and is a huge Buckeyes football fan. She is the past President of American Christian Fiction Writers and now sits on the board as an Advisor. Visit her website at to read her blog, and to follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Link to buy the book:

Margie's comments: The Wedding Dress is an amazing story of how one wedding dress ties together four brides over the past century. From the moment Charlotte bids on the battered trunk, I fell in love with the story. Charlotte is only weeks away from her own wedding, and she has yet to find the dress that is uniquely hers. For a woman who has both feet firmly planted in the present, she is strangely drawn to the trunk she buys at an auction, intrigued by the odd auctioneer who claimed she had redeemed the chest. Rachel has done an outstanding job of weaving the stories together, giving Charlotte a better understanding of her faith, redemption, and true love. An excellent read.

What is "true" beauty? Join the conversation at Rachel's Author Chat Party Event Page. On the eventing of 4/19 we'll gather to talk about inner and outer beauty and share moments of beauty in our lives.

In the meantime, celebrate with Rachel by entering her True Beauty Giveaway!
One "beautiful" winner will receive:

  • A $200 Visa Cash Card (Treat yourself to a spa day or weekend get-away!)

  • The Wedding Dress (by Rachel Hauck)

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends 4/18/12. Winner will be announced at Rachel's "True Beauty" Facebook Party on  4/19. Rachel will be hosting an evening of beauty (inner/outer) chat, fun trivia, laughter, and encouragement - bring your friends! She'll also be giving away some GREAT prizes: gift certificates, books, and a Book Club Prize Pack! (Ten copies of the book for your small group or book club and a live chat with Rachel via Skype.)

So grab a few of your friends and your copy of The Wedding Dress and join Rachel on the evening of April 19th for an evening of fun.

Don't miss a moment of the fun. RSVP TODAY and tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 19!

The Christy Award 2012 Finalists


ANN ARBOR, Mich.—The 13th annual Christy Awards for excellence in Christian fiction will
be presented at a dinner to be held at 7:00 p.m., Mon., July 16, 2012, at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando. The reservation form for the 2012 Christy Awards will be available online at after Apr. 26. Watch for an announcement regarding keynote speaker and emcee soon.

The Christy Advisory Board is pleased to announce nominees in nine categories for the 2012 Christy Awards honoring Christian fiction.

The 2012 Christy Award nominees are:

My Foolish Heart by Susan May Warren (Tyndale House Publishers)
Larkspur Cove by Lisa Wingate (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)
Wolfsbane by Ronie Kendig (Barbour Publishing)

The Amish Midwife by Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould (Harvest House Publishers)
Dancing on Glass by Pamela Binnings Ewen (B&H Publishing Group)
The Touch by Randall Wallace (Tyndale House Publishers)

Dry as Rain by Gina Holmes (Tyndale House Publishers)
Promises to Keep by Ann Tatlock (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)
Words by Ginny Yttrup (B&H Publishing Group)

An Eye for Glory by Karl Bacon (Zondervan)
Southern Fried Sushi by Jennifer Rogers Spinola (Barbour Publishing)
Words by Ginny Yttrup (B&H Publishing Group)

Forsaking All Others by Allison Pittman (Tyndale House Publishers)
Mine is the Night by Liz Curtis Higgs (WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group)
Wonderland Creek by Lynn Austin (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)

A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)
The Maid of Fairbourne Hall by Julie Klassen (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)
To Die For by Sandra Byrd (Howard Books, a division of Simon & Schuster)

Over the Edge by Brandilyn Collins (B&H Publishing Group)
Pattern of Wounds by Mark Bertrand (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)
The Queen by Steven James (Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group)

The Chair by Jim Rubart (B&H Publishing Group)
Forbidden by Ted Dekker and Tosca Lee (Center Street, a division of Hachette Book Group USA)
Veiled Rose by Anne Elisabeth Stengl (Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group)

How Huge the Night by Heather Munn and Lydia Munn (Kregel Publications)
Merchant’s Daughter by Melanie Dickerson (Zondervan)
Waterfall by Lisa T. Bergren (David C Cook)

Congratulations to all the finalists!

Verse of the Day

Make me know Your ways, O LORD; teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, for You are the God of my salvation; for You I wait all the day. (Psalm 25:4–5 NASB)

Friday, April 13, 2012

The Fiddler by Beverly Lewis

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Fiddler
Bethany House Publishers (April 10, 2012)
Beverly Lewis


Beverly's first venture into adult fiction is the best-selling trilogy, The Heritage of Lancaster County, including The Shunning, a suspenseful saga of Katie Lapp, a young Amish woman drawn to the modern world by secrets from her past. The book is loosely based on the author's maternal grandmother, Ada Ranck Buchwalter, who left her Old Order Mennonite upbringing to marry a Bible College student. One Amish-country newspaper claimed Beverly's work to be "a primer on Lancaster County folklore" and offers "an insider's view of Amish life."

Booksellers across the country, and around the world, have spread the word of Beverly's tender tales of Plain country life. A clerk in a Virginia bookstore wrote, "Beverly's books have a compelling freshness and spark. You just don't run across writing like that every day. I hope she'll keep writing stories about the Plain people for a long, long time."

A member of the National League of American Pen Women, as well as a Distinguished Alumnus of Evangel University, Lewis has written over 80 books for children, youth, and adults, many of them award-winning. She and her husband, David, make their home in Colorado, where they enjoy hiking, biking, and spending time with their family. They are also avid musicians and fiction "book worms."     


Come home to Hickory Hollow, Pennsylvania--the beloved setting where Beverly Lewis's celebrated Amish novels began--with new characters and new stories of drama, romance, and the ties that draw people together.

A wrong turn in a rainstorm leads Englisher Amelia Devries to Michael Hostetler--and the young Amishman's charming Old Order community of Hickory Hollow. Despite their very different backgrounds, Amelia and Michael both feel hemmed in by the expectations of others and struggle with how to find room for their own hopes. And what first seems to be a chance encounter might just change their lives forever.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Fiddler, go HERE.

Watch the book video:


Review coming.

Verse of the Day

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. (Romans 12:1–2)

I really like how these verses are paraphrased in The Message:
So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Verse of the Day

Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Always the Designer, Never the Bride by Sandra D. Bricker

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Always The Designer, Never The Bride
Abingdon Press (April 2012)
Sandra D. Bricker


For more than a decade, Sandra D. Bricker lived in Los Angeles. While honing her chosen craft of screenwriting in every spare moment, she worked as a personal assistant and publicist to some of daytime television's hottest stars. When her mother became ill in Florida, she walked away from that segment of her life and moved across the country to take on a new role: Caregiver.

The Big 5-OH! was released by Abingdon Press in the Spring of 2010, and the novel was very well-received, garnering a couple of nibbles from Hollywood.

Always the Baker, Never the Bride was released by Abingdon Press in September 2010. With its phenomenal reviews, the novel spawned a series of three more books based on the popular cast of characters at The Tanglewood Inn, a wedding destination hotel in historic Roswell, Georgia. The series cemented Sandie's spot in publishing as a flagship author of Laugh-Out-Loud romantic comedy for the inspirational market.

"Being allowed to combine my faith and my humor with my writing dream," says Bricker, "well, that's the best of all worlds, as far as I'm concerned!"   


It’s taken Audrey Regan years to establish herself as a wedding dress designer, and to date she’s been roped into creating dresses for nine of her girlfriends. Request #10 follows her vow to “Just say no!” and comes from her very best friend. She can hardly turn Carly down!

Audrey arrives in Atlanta early to perform all of her maid-of-honor duties along with final fittings for a one-of-a-kind dress. But Carly’s wedding is nothing short of an event, complete with Prince Charming, and the festivities make Audrey question whether there’s a prince of her own anywhere in her future.

Enter the groom’s brother and best man. Shaggy-haired, tattooed bad boy J.R. Hunt couldn’t be any more different from Prince Charming if he rode in on a Harley Davidson.  Oh, wait. He actually did ride in on a Harley!

If you would like to read an excerpt of the first chapter of Always The Designer, Never The Bride, go HERE.

Margie's Comments: Due to some other rather pressing deadlines, I haven't been able to read Always the Designer, Never the Bride yet. But I did read the first book in the series, Always the Baker, Never the Bride, and fell in love with Sandra's style of Laugh-Out-Loud romantic comedy. I learned that reading one of Sandra's books before I fall asleep is fine—makes for pleasant dreams—but not when I wake hubby with an out loud giggle. So I'm looking forward to yet another fun read.

Verse of the Day

The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you." (Psalm 32:8 NLT)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Verse of the Day

“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you." (Isaiah 43:1–2 NLT)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Verse of the Day

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my rock and my Redeemer. (Psalm 19:14)

Friday, April 6, 2012

The 13th Tribe by Robert Liparulo

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The 13th Tribe
Thomas Nelson (April 3, 2012)
Robert Liparulo


Best-selling novelist Robert Liparulo is a former journalist, with over a thousand articles and multiple writing awards to his name. His first three critically acclaimed thrillers—Comes a Horseman, Germ, and Deadfall—were optioned by Hollywood producers, as well as his Dreamhouse Kings series for young adults. Bestselling author Ted Dekker calls The 13th Tribe, released in April 2012, “a phenomenal story.” Liparulo is currently working with director Andrew Davis (The Fugitive, The Guardian) on the novel and screenplay of a political thriller. New York Times best-selling author Steve Berry calls Liparulo’s writing “Inventive, suspenseful, and highly entertaining . . . Robert Liparulo is a storyteller, pure and simple.” Liparulo lives in Colorado with his family.

Visit Robert Liparulo's Facebook Fan page:, or at Twitter @robertliparulo.


Their story didn't start this year . . . or even this millennium.

It began when Moses was on Mt. Sinai. Tired of waiting on the One True God, the twelve tribes of Israel began worshiping a golden calf through pagan revelry. Many received immediate death for their idolatry, but 40 were handed a far worse punishment—endless life on earth with no chance to see the face of God.

This group of immortals became the 13th Tribe, and they've been trying to earn their way into heaven ever since-by killing sinners. Though their logic is twisted, their brilliance is undeniable. Their wrath is unstoppable. And the technology they possess is beyond anything mere humans have ever seen.

Jagger Baird knows nothing about the Tribe when he's hired as head of security for an archaeological dig on Mt. Sinai. The former Army Ranger is still reeling from an accident that claimed the life of his best friend, his arm, and his faith in God.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The 13th Tribe, go HERE.

Margie's Comments: I'm trying to finish up reading for a contest I'm judging, so I haven't had a chance to read The 13th Tribe yet. Soon, I hope. Bob's books are always fast-paced, with action so high it's hard to get a decent breath, and full of incredible technology. Bob is teaching a Continuing Session on how to write suspense and thrillers at the upcoming Colorado Christian Writers Conference May 16–19.

Verse of the Day

I will bless the LORD who has counseled me; indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. I have set the LORD continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; my flesh also will dwell securely. For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. You will make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever. (Psalm 16:7–11 NASB) Precious promises . . . Did you see the prophecy concerning Christ's death and resurrection? Jesus Christ, God's Holy One, died and was buried. We remember that on this day. But He rose to glorious life before His body could decay. Hallelujah, what a Savior! Sunday is coming!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Verse of the Day

"For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT)

God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful. (1 Thessalonians 5:24 NLT)

The Lord will work out his plans for my life—for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don’t abandon me, for you made me. (Psalm 138:8 NLT)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Cooking the Books by Bonnie Calhoun

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Cooking The Books
Abingdon Press (April 2012)
Bonnie S. Calhoun


As the Owner/Director of the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance Bonnie has helped use the 220+ blogs of the Alliance to promote many titles on the Christian bestseller list. She also owns and publishes the Christian Fiction Online magazine which is devoted to readers and writers of Christian fiction. She is the Northeast Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW). At ACFW she was named the ‘Mentor of the Year,’ for 2011, and she is the current President of (CAN) Christian Authors Network. Bonnie is also the Appointment Coordinator for both the Colorado Christian Writers Conference and the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers Conference.

In her spare time she is an avid social media junkie, and teaches Facebook, Twitter, Blogging and HTML as recreational occupations. She also has a novel coming out in the Abingdon Quilts of Love series. Her novel Pieces of the Heart will publish August of 2013.

Bonnie and her husband Bob live in a log cabin on 15 acres in upstate area of Binghamton, New York with a dog and cat who consider the humans as wait-staff.


After her mother dies from a heart attack, Sloane Templeton goes from Cyber Crimes Unit to bookstore owner before she can blink. She also "inherits" a half-batty store manager; a strange bunch of little old people from the neighborhood who meet at the store once a week, but never read books, called the Granny Oakleys Book Club; and Aunt Verline, who fancies herself an Iron Chef when in reality you need a cast iron stomach to partake of her culinary disasters. And with a group like this you should never ask, “What else can go wrong?”

A lot! Sloane begins to receive cyber threats. While Sloane uses her computer forensic skills to uncover the source of the threats, it is discovered someone is out to kill her. Can her life get more crazy?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Cooking The Books, go HERE.

Watch the book video:

If you'd like to read interviews with Bonnie, try these:

Everbody Needs A Little Romance

A Christian Writers World

Novel Rocket

ACFW - Fiction Finder

Margie's comments: I've waited a long time to write this review for my very good friend, Bonnie Calhoun. When I got the galley for Cooking the Books, we were in the middle of the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers Conference preparation. But every chance I got, I opened my Kindle a continued reading. What wonderful characters Bonnie has created—ones that remain alive in my mind. Sloane is wonderfully snarky, and I laughed out loud over so many of her lines. I could see Bonnie in her, and Bonnie admits Sloane Templeton is autobiographical. The mystery Sloane finds herself deep in the middle of is well written and very well paced. I've read (and edited) earlier books Bonnie has written, so I can honestly say that with her debut novel, Cooking the Books, Bonnie has found her true writer's voice. For anyone who loves mysteries with a bit of "snark," you'll love Bonnie Calhoun's Cooking the Books.

Verse of the Day

The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. (2 Peter 3:9 NLT)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Verse of the Day

But the LORD still waits for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion. For the LORD is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for him to help them. . . . He will be gracious if you ask for help. He will respond instantly to the sound of your cries. Though the Lord gave you adversity for food and affliction for drink, he will still be with you to teach you. You will see your teacher with your own eyes, and you will hear a voice say, "This is the way; turn around and walk here." (Isaiah 30:18–21 NLT)

Monday, April 2, 2012

Verse of the Day

"Know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought." (1 Chronicles 28:9 ESV)