Book Review: Shadow Stalker

Do you guys remember the movie Jerry McGuire, when Jerry declares his love for his wife and she tells him “you had me at hello” That’s the best way to describe this book.  As a crime mysteries lover, this book just sucked me in. I dare you to read the prologue and not read the rest of the book. A little spoiler if you allow me. In that prologue there’s a scene and the author says something like…and she saw her mother’s head explode in front of her eyes. I was sold. I know, it sounds morbid, but it is that good.

I sat patiently for hours at a doctor’s appointment without complaining because I was so into the book that I was in no rush to be called in. I think has been a long time since I have been upset that a book ended, but the good news is that it’s a series so I’m definitely going for book 2, because I need to know what happens. So I take this opportunity to tell the author to hurry up and write it…LOL!

In a nutshell, this is the story of a woman who watches her parent’s being killed as a child. She’s protected by family members who adopt her for a while. She grows to become a private investigator, which sometimes gets her in trouble. The people who killed her parents are after her and now she needs to use her skills to protect herself, but also to protect her current investigation and the investigation of her new partner.

I give this one five stars with no hesitation.  I’ll keep you posted when I read the next one.

The Patience of Job

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You have probably heard this phrase frequently. When someone seems to be able to tolerate what seems to be intolerable they are often told, “You have the patience of Job” Although I don’t consider myself a very patient person, I have been told that I have the patience of Job. Here’s the thing. I think we miss some of the elements of the patience of Job. We have the tendency to idealize that he never complained, never got angry. If that was the case, not even Job had the patience of Job.

Patience is defined as the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset. The key wordsimages for me in this statement, without getting angry or upset and the fact that there are no screams, lamps flying or inappropriate language doesn’t mean a person is not angry or upset.

I’ve read the book of Job a little over three times. There are passages where I pushed my bible to the side fearing that just the fact that I read some of his remarks towards God was going to make a thunder come down from the skies.  Here are some examples but you have to read the book, there are a lot more:

  •  Job 3:11 “Why didn’t I die at birth, my first breath out of the womb my last?”
  • Job 6: 8-9 “All I want is an answer to one prayer, a last request to be honored:
    Let God step on me—squash me like a bug, and be done with me for good”
  • Job 7: 11-16 ““And so I’m not keeping one bit of this quiet, I’m laying it all out on the table;
        my complaining to high heaven is bitter, but honest. Are you going to put a muzzle on me,
        the way you quiet the sea and still the storm? If I say, ‘I’m going to bed, then I’ll feel better.
        A little nap will lift my spirits,’ you come and so scare me with nightmares
        and frighten me with ghosts that I’d rather strangle in the bedclothes
        than face this kind of life any longer. I hate this life! Who needs any more of this?
        Let me alone! There’s nothing to my life—it’s nothing but smoke.”
  • Job 9:21-24“Believe me, I’m blameless. I don’t understand what’s going on.
        I hate my life! Since either way it ends up the same, I can only conclude
        that God destroys the good right along with the bad. When calamity hits and brings sudden     death, he folds his arms, aloof from the despair of the innocent. He lets the wicked take over running the world; he installs judges who can’t tell.”
  • Job 10:1 “I can’t stand my life—I hate it! I’m putting it all out on the table, all the bitterness of my life—I’m holding back nothing.”
  • Job 16:8-10 “God, you have wasted me totally—me and my family! You’ve shriveled me like a dried prune, showing the world that you’re against me. My gaunt face stares back at me from the mirror, a mute witness to your treatment of me. Your anger tears at me, your teeth rip me to shreds, your eyes burn holes in me—God, my enemy!”
  • Job 17:6 “God, you’ve made me the talk of the town—people spit in my face”
  • Job 21:4 “It’s not you I’m complaining to—it’s God. Is it any wonder I’m getting fed up with his silence?”
  • Job 23:1“I’m not letting up—I’m standing my ground. My complaint is legitimate. God has no right to treat me like this— it isn’t fair!”
  • Job 30:20-23 “I shout for help, God, and get nothing, no answer! I stand to face you in protest, and you give me a blank stare! You’ve turned into my tormenter—you slap me around, knock me about. You raised me up so I was riding high and then dropped me, and I crashed. I know you’re determined to kill me, to put me six feet under.”

So once again, if your image of the patience of Job is this quiet guy who took everything in longsuffering not getting ever upset, go read the book again, that was not in the one I read. I don’t know about you but I read a lot of griping and complaining. If someone is saying constantly that he hates his life that is someone who is upset.

I’m not saying this to down Job. He was patient and truly waited on God. He endured everything that happened to him, but he vented and complained quite often. Don’t ever feel that when you bring your sorrows to the Lord it means that you are not trusting God.  When you feel the need to vent to God, don’t think that you can’t.  If God is our everything, it means HE will also be THE ONE to whom we should go with our heartaches, anxieties and pain.

One of the things I admire about Job is that he always knew that his life depended on God. He knew he was feeble and that God was sovereign. He never cursed at God, he kept his faith through losing it all and he lost it all. He lost his wife, his sons, all his earthly possessions, his friends and even his health. When I say he lost it all, he lost it ALL; but his faith.

So at least in my case, I may have some of the patience of Job. I whine and whine and complaint knowing that God is there. I give it all to him, but I still say “God is not fair” and God says it’s true, I never said life was fair, but I am fair.

I don’t only want to have the patience of Job. I also want to have his faith and endurance to be able to Praise the Lord no matter what comes my way.

Food for thought.

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Ending 2013

In the years prior I measured my success by the blogs I was able to write, the books I was able to publish and the personal goals I was able to meet. 2013 was a year rich in life lessons that could not be accounted in numbers.

This year I was a lazy blogger. I was being pulled in so many directions in my life that I couldn’t concentrate enough to write myABV blogs. I participated in a few marketing campaigns for my books but nothing major. I was able to publish one book out of pure perseverance and I know I have not done anywhere near anything to market it, so I’m not disappointed with the results because I can’t have any expectations for the work I have not done.

I have not even been consistent working out, so I have some ground to recover once the year comes back. So what are the highlights of this year?

Well, although my goal was to read twelve books, I read eight. Yes, the goal was not met but it was six books more than I read the year before.

I started working with a new ministry at my church in Spanish. Aside from writing, I’ve found another place where I know God has called me to be.

I cooked Thanksgiving dinner, something I had not done in over five years and I’m pretty proud of myself.

But to be honest the highlight of this year was a card that someone I had not talked to in a while gave me. The card said how much I

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had inspired her. I’m not boasting on that fact, I’m just happy that in spite of all my shortcomings and inabilities the Lord still used me to inspire someone. The Glory is for HIM, I’m just glad my imperfect self is still usable for him and that makes up for 365 rough days of 2013.

I’m looking forward to 2014. 2014 is a New Year with new possibilities, new opportunities, new mercies but the same awesome God.

Happy New Year 2014!

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CrossReads Merry Christmas Sale & Gift Card Giveaway!

Welcome To Our Christian Christmas Book Sale!

Where we invite you to pick up good books for less this Christmas!

Christian Christmas Book Sale

Merry Christmas! We hope you’re having a wonderful Christmas season. We know that this is the time of year when many readers are given eReaders and gift cards and we wanted a way to help you make the most of your gifts. So from now through Saturday (December 25-28th) we’re offering over 20 books for only 99 cents each.

AND we have one more gift for you! You can enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card by sharing this book sale with your friends and connecting with some of our authors across the web.

So load up on books this season with the Christian Christmas Book Sale – and be sure to tell your friends!

The books from our book sale are listed below – Fiction first, followed by Non-Fiction, and then the giveaway – enjoy!

Fiction:

To Protect & Serve by Staci Stallings


Houston firefighter, Jeff Taylor is a fireman’s fireman. He’s not afraid of anything, and no situation is too dangerous to keep him on the sideline if lives are at stake.

Lisa Matheson runs a semi-successful ad agency that’s on the brink of falling apart. Her employees are incompetent and her schedule has become exhausting. When she takes on a client with a brilliant idea for a big conference, she thinks that maybe, finally this is her lucky break. However, the fire station wasn’t what she had in mind for finding conference speakers. When she falls for a handsome but shy firefighter, it’s possible that life might just be going her way for a change. The only problem is she can’t control Jeff and the death wish he seems to have…

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Eternity by Staci Stallings


Aaron Foster thought he had the perfect life until his fiancee walked out of their apartment and then back in again with his new roommate. In desperation Aaron and his best friend, Harmony Jordan, devise The Plan to save Drew’s heart from getting shattered, but when The Plan succeeds beyond their wildest expectation, it could spell heartache for them all.

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Reunited at Christmas by Debra Ullrick

Contemporary Christian Romance


Search and rescue dog handler Shelby Davis is living the dream. Not only does she train search and rescue dogs, but she’s a bestselling suspense author who has waterfront property in the beautiful mountain town of Grand Lake, Colorado. All is well until she receives a call to bring her dog Max and her snowmobile to help rescue a man who is lost in a blizzard up on Gravel Mountain. That man is the one person she never wants to see again—Ryker Anderson—the man who broke her heart the day he called three months before their wedding to say goodbye with no explanation as to why.
After being gone for eighteen months, Ryker Anderson is back in Grand Lake where he hopes to win back the woman he loves. He only hopes Shelby understands why he left. Will he be able to convince Shelby that she can trust him with her heart again even though he broke it before?

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Déjà Vu Bride by Debra Ullrick

Contemporary Christian Romance


Furious with God, Olivia Roseman vows to never trust Him again. Why should she? Once again her prayers have gone unanswered, and once again another loved one has been ripped from her. With no job and only a few dollars, Olivia makes a choice to start over again. Without God and without love. However, her handsome new boss isn’t going to make forgetting God or keeping her vow to never love again very easy. Erik Cole questions the sanity of his moving from Swamper City, Alabama to Charity, West Virginia. That is, until he hires airbrush designer Olivia Roseman to paint his monster truck. When he senses that she’s a gal who is down on her luck, he vows to do whatever he can to help her. Only problem is, the little beauty creates more challenges than one. As his feelings toward her deepen, all Erik can do is hope and pray that one day Olivia will open up her heart to Christ—and to him.

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Prince of Alasia by Annie Douglass Lima

Adventure/Fantasy


Twelve-year-old Prince Jaymin, heir to the throne of Alasia, barely escapes with his life when invaders from neighboring Malorn attack. Accompanied by Erik, his young bodyguard and friend, Jaymin flees to a nearby town to live in hiding. There, coming face to face with the hardships suffered by the poor, he determines to improve his people’s lives someday when he takes the throne, assuming he can reclaim his kingdom.

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In the Enemy’s Service by Annie Douglass Lima

Adventure/Fantasy



When the Malornian army invaded Alasia and Prince Jaymin was forced to flee for his life, what happened to those left behind? In the Enemy’s Service tells the story of ten-year-old Anya, imprisoned among other survivors and forced to work for the occupying troops. While pretending to follow orders and serve diligently in the palace, Anya discovers ingenious ways to spy on enemy officers and slip valuable information to the Alasian resistance.

But as she helps to craft plans that may eventually free Alasia, Anya accidentally uncovers a disturbing reference to her own family. Her fears are strengthened when she is confronted by a mysterious Malornian who seems somehow to know the truth behind the role she has been playing. Holding her life in his hands with that knowledge, he claims to bear information implicating her father in the betrayal that led to the Invasion itself.

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The Fall by Chana Keefer

Speculative Fiction


Rapha, once Lucifer’s best friend, had a front-row seat for every crucial moment that shaped the world we live in today. This faithful angel wants to tell you his story. But beware, this is not a journey for the faint-of-heart. Ahead there be giants–plus demons, centaurs, mermaids, demi-gods and war that extends from the beginning of time. In the tradition of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis and Frank Peretti, THE FALL (The Rapha Chronicles, Book 1) melds science fiction, fantasy, epic adventure and mythology.

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Why We Give Gifts At Christmas by Corine Hyman

Children’s Picture Book


Christmas gifts … a Christmas tradition as old as Christmas. However why do we give gifts to each other at Christmas time if it is Jesus’ birthday? This is a question that everyone has wondered at least once in their life. However, few have been able to come up with an answer. Join Evelyn and her friends as they discover the reason why we give gifts to each other at Christmas time if it is Jesus’ birthday.

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Pibbin the Small by Gloria Repp

Children’s Book


His friend is hurt and the doctor lives far away.
He might run into snakes. Or that giant bullfrog. Or Black Snapping Crabs!
Is Pibbin too small to be brave?

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The Captives by Precarious Yates

YA Fantasy


“When the caveat whale is gone, the time of the end has come, but the rise of Shunda will stem the tide.” Three lives weave together inextricably. They fight against the MerKing to rescue the captives. Can they trust themselves in their fight against this mutual enemy? Can they trust one another?

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Times of Turmoil by Cliff Ball

Thriller


In this prequel to Times of Trouble and Times of Trial, we follow how the Evans family gained their riches and eventually their power to influence events in the United States. We see important events that the Evans family gets themselves involved in: such as the return of the Israelites to Israel, the assassination of President Kennedy, the terrorism of 9/11, and eventually events that lead to government tyranny in the United States with the sole purpose of destroying Christianity and its influence in the United States.

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Times of Trouble by Cliff Ball

Thriller


FBI Agent Brian Atwood is used to danger, and when he hunts down leads to a terrorist plot and saves a U.S. Airbase, he’s eventually offered a position to be the personal bodyguard of the President of the United States. The job not only tests his skills as an agent, but also his faith as a Christian when he discovers that the President has the morals of an alley cat. As Brian tries to come to terms with doing his job and having to look the other way, his world begins to crumble. His wife is dying of cancer and his son was taken away by the government because he has Down Syndrome. What else can go wrong? As the U.S. disintegrates, Brian must try to keep his family safe before the end times.

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Times of Trial by Cliff Ball

Thriller


This is the story about three Christian families who experience the persecution of Christians first hand when the U.S. becomes a Police State. Two of the families get rounded up by government forces as the President declares a dictatorship, initiates Michael Evans’ Order 21, and lays the U.S. on a course that will mean its ultimate destruction. The third family make their way from Arizona to Wyoming, where they hope a town built by Doomsday Preppers twenty years earlier will keep them safe. Micheal Evans also tries to manipulate events in the Middle East to try to to bring war between Israel and Iran shortly before the end times.

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Amish Knitting Circle Christmas by Karen Anna Vogel

Amish Fiction


Granny Weaver started a knitting circle believing women are stronger spun together, just like her wool. But she was young once with her own struggles. In 1963 Deborah Byler is twenty-one and has turned down seven marriage proposals from hopeful suitors in Millersburg, Ohio. At her parent’s request, she goes to live with relatives in the new Amish settlement in Smicksburg, Pennsylvania, praying she’ll find a match. Jeb Weaver lives in a strict Swartzentruber Amish settlement, and he can no longer abide under the rules of the Ordnung. His older brother left the family farm and settled in Smicksburg, and convinces Jeb to do the same. When Jeb meets Deborah, he finds her too liberal and outspoken. Deborah thinks Jeb’s judgmental and a complete stick in the mud. Their constant clashing makes sparks fly. Will an African American man, who hitchhikes around the country to attend Martin Luther King Jr. marches, help Jeb and Deborah see their own prejudices?

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Winter’s Past by Mary E Hanks

Contemporary Christian Romance


When Winter is scheduled to speak in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, a city she’s avoided for ten years, she must face two things. Her past. And the fact she hasn’t forgiven Ty Williams, her ex-husband.

But when Ty shows up at the meetings, Winter is shocked by the change in him. Radically different from the self-absorbed guy she remembers, he stands before her crying—crying!—and humbly asks her forgiveness. This man who broke her heart, betrayed her, is now gut-wrenchingly sincere in his apology, prays for her like a long-lost friend, and he has a request. One unbelievable request that could change everything.

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A Quest For Skye by J.L.Rothdiener

Christian Fiction


Doctors Morgan and Tammy Hamilton take a vacation from their pediatric clinic in Saint Paul, Minnesota to board a cruise ship for the Mediterranean. Devastated by Tammy’s third miscarriage and the news that she will never be able to bear children, the couple hopes to use the fourteen day cruise to regain their emotional footing. But life has other plans for them. Among the passengers is Skye, a nine-year old girl with an irrepressible spirit, and a passion for living that touches everyone around her. Infused with hope, and a belief in a loving God, Skye becomes the daughter that the Hamiltons could never have.

But despite her open and honest nature, Skye is surrounded by ominous questions. Was the accident that killed her parents truly an accident? Or was it sabotage? Why are news reporters hounding this innocent child? What secrets are concealed in the laboratory on the island of Kardia? The truth – if they ever find it – can bring a government to its knees, and thrust national power into the hands of men who will mot hesitate to shed the blood of innocents..

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The Quest For Forgiveness by J.L.Rothdiener

Christian Fiction


Singer-songwriter Briana Bays rose from obscurity to the center spotlight. She had everything… fame, talent, beauty, and one of the most successful music careers in history. The world was her stage, but the screaming adulation of her fans could not fill the hole in her heart. Her past was shrouded in shadows, some of her own making, and some of which she was trying desperately to pierce.

No amount of success could bring her the one thing she needed most… forgiveness…

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The Twelfth Juror by Alexandra Swann and Joyce Swann

Christian Fiction


Young, beautiful, ambitious Megan Cleary seems to have the perfect life: a dream job in a prestigious law firm in New York City, an upscale boyfriend, and a fabulous apartment. But her perfect world is shattered when one night, while she is working late, she is brutally beaten and raped by a stranger. Afraid and ashamed, she refuses to admit what has happened to her, but she cannot forget her terrifying ordeal, and shortly afterward she illegally buys a handgun to protect herself. A few months later Megan is attacked again, but this time she is armed and ready. She shoots her assailant and flees the scene before the police arrive and discover the body. She never tells anyone that she owns a gun, or that she has killed a man, but her professional and private life begins to unravel as she struggles to gain control of the fear and guilt from which she cannot free herself. When events beyond her control leave her financially destitute and emotionally drained, she returns to parents’ home in Buffalo to start over. This page turning story of loss and redemption will leave the reader guessing to the very end.

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A Thing Devoted by Lotis Key

Family


A Thing Devoted chronicles two years in the life of a Christian family devastated by adultery and divorce.

Three, adopted, multi-racial children, struggle with the question of God’s seeming indifference to their pain. Ten year old Abster, a tiny spy in the house of loss and confusion, keeps a daily record of her observations. This intimate story of one family’s journey through fire, considers the purpose of suffering, its defining nature, and ultimately its life giving power.

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Before The Beginning by Tina Webb

Fantasy


In eternity, the eons are endless and creativity continuous. The species of Homo sapiens created in Eden was unique….but not totally original. Heavenly beings resembling modern man had been created long before Adam, and some of them once lived on Earth.

Existence on earth is utopia until Helel Ben Shachar, beautiful and loved, becomes a rebel and a liability to Earth’s mission. A contagion strikes those who agree to worship Helel. Fear and violence destroy angelic beings who had only ever known peace and love. Helel names High Governess Atara the Queen of Heaven. Abba, the Creator, grieves. His eternal heart aches, then becomes angry. Anything that opposes His essence is named His enemy. Justice is created and a Holy censuring begins. High Governors Michael and Adi grieve the demise of their banished friends and their cherished Earth.

Can the sadness of rejected affection ever leave the memory of the One rejected? Abba is Love. Abba, the Creator, means ‘father’ in the ancient Chaldean language. It is the name Jesus used when crying out on the Cross. Abba created all things. All things were good. But once Abba saw something He did not create and lamented.

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The Song Of The Tree by Lotis Key

Women’s Fiction


Despite promises of eternal joy given by the Tree of Life, a privileged young woman loses everything in a brutal war. Her husband disappears; her family is murdered; her home is burned to the ground.

Desperate, starving, and burdened with an unwanted child, she now despises and rejects the Tree she once worshiped. Ripped from her land and people, forced into survival immigration, she becomes a lowly refugee, a servant in the homes of the rich. Her unusually gifted child thrives, but is an ever present reminder of ultimate loss and betrayal.

Two women: one broken, the other rooted in bitterness, continue to be drawn towards the song of a Tree that will not let them go. Along roads of degrading poverty and equally destructive wealth, each much wrestle with the siren call of perfect love, and its altar sacrifice of perfect trust.

The Song of the Tree is an intense, contemporary allegory that moves the God-seeker from fist shaking stance, down to knees before the throne.

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Zinvoy’s Journey by Ginny Jaques

Adult Speculative

Zinovy Efimovich KoZlov is a self-made man who’s spent the last twenty-three years climbing the ladder of Russian military success, one rung at a time. An FSB veteran, Air Force fighter pilot, member of the elite Special Security Service, and now a cosmonaut on the global regime’s new International Space Station, he should be at the peak of his career. But Zinovy has enemies whose political power extends into space, and those enemies are determined to kill him.

Then the earth is destroyed in a nuclear holocaust and everything changes.

When the world ends, Zinovy’s Journey begins.

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The Vineyard Fray by Ben Kniskern

Action and Adventure Allegory


During ancient times, in a middle eastern land known as the Vineyard, life seems to go on unaffected by the people’s rebellion against the One who made them. That is, until the Owner of the Vineyard decides He’s had enough. In the midst of chaos and war, several individuals who are loyal to the Owner must band together to save their kingdom. Follow this unlikely group of heroes as they encounter mysterious messengers, battle against ruthless enemies and endeavor to turn the hearts of the people back to the One who created them.

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Shoot the Wounded by Lynn Dove

Young Adult


SHOOT THE WOUNDED is a contemporary Christian novel that deals with relevant social issues such as teen pregnancy and family violence. Set in the small fictional town of Maplewood, in southern Alberta, best friends Leigh and Ronnie find their friendship and faith challenged when Jake, a good looking Christian boy, moves into their neighborhood. Leigh is especially delighted that Jake is paying more attention to her than any other girl at school or church, but what she does not know is that despite his bold declaration of being a follower of Christ, he’s carrying a dark secret from his past that has the potential to destroy his integrity and have his friends question the legitimacy of his faith.

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One Night with a Rock Star by Chana Keefer

Inspirational Romance


When Esther was a young teen with frizzy hair and too-skinny legs, Sky’s music soothed her through awkwardness and pain. During the Glam-Rock 80s, Esther is a college journalism student and fledgling print model. One chance meeting with her superstar crush rocks both their worlds.

Will Esther’s deep roots in family and faith keep her feet on the ground when a tornado named Sky blows her world apart?

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Non-Fiction:

21 Teen Devotionals… for Guys! by Paul Hart and CJ Hitz

Teen Devotional


Designed to be read, pondered on it and applied to daily life, these 21 devotions are written for teen guys who want to find their true strength in Christ. We want you to know that the Bible isn’t just a book that’s over 2000 years old. It’s completely applicable to our lives today – even as teenagers. We know that girls and guys don’t face the same issues in high school – not even close. So these devotions were written with today’s teen guys in mind.

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21 Teen Devotionals… for Girls! by Shelley Hitz and Heather Hart

Teen Devotional


It’s said that it takes 21 days to form a new habit or break an old one, so why not spend the next 21 days forming a habit of spending time with God? If you’ve got 21 days, we’ve got 21 devotions specifically written for today’s teen girls.

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Purposeful Planning by Phyllis Sather

Family


Do you need a plan to keep your family moving in the direction the Lord is leading you? Perhaps you don’t know where the Lord is leading you. Phyllis takes you step-by-step through the process of planning a time together for your family to help determine the path the Lord is choosing for each area of your life. Her family has followed this format for over 12 years and has found that it provides the compass they’ve needed to plan and stay on course.

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Where Family Meets Faith by Kimberley Payne

Devotional


Written and compiled especially for families, Where Family Meets Faith is a collection of devotionals that show the similarities between the challenges of raising a family and building a relationship with God.

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Selah by Tina Webb

Daily Quotes for Daily Meditation


The word “selah” means: to pause and think about. Many quotes are short enough to share in social media. Longer passages facilitate times of prayer and personal reflection.

This is a refreshing read for the person who likes to contemplate life through the lens of the Bible. It is a great topic starter for personal or group bible study.

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10 Keys to Happy & Loving Relationships by Krystal Kuehn

Relationships


The 10 Keys to Happy and Loving Relationships provides essential relationship building tools to help you develop healthy relationships. You will discover relationship building tools to help make all your relationships more fulfilling, harmonious and successful. Whether it is a spouse, friend, co-worker, son/daughter, girlfriend/boyfriend, or casual acquaintance, you will discover that you can have happy, loving, healthy relationships.

Healthy relationships bring joy and peace to our lives. Healthy relationships help us to love and be loved. In 10 Keys to Happy and Loving Relationships, you will be taken on a personal journey to discover how you can better communicate the 10 key attributes of love as you relate to others. You will be empowered with relationship building tools that will help you replace unhealthy patterns with new, healthy and effective ways to communicate, connect with and love others. And you will discover how to communicate and experience genuine love and true happiness in ways that will change you, your relationships and your life forever!

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And Now For The Giveaway…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Sale of 2013

Here are 31 more reasons to $ave on this after-Christmas $ale! Thirty-one ebooks for 99¢ each. They will be on sale from December 24, 2013 through Tuesday, December 31, 2013. Click the links below the graphic to “look inside” each book on Amazon and download your digital copies!

CHILDREN’S BOOKS

The Camera Shy Monster by Susette Williams

Has your child ever hated to have their picture taken? Then you will enjoy reading The Camera Shy Monster as much as your child or grandchild will enjoy having this entertaining picture book read to them.

Brooke doesn’t want her picture taken. She runs away and meets Nessie, a friendly sea monster, who also hates having her picture taken. But how can Nessie take care of Brooke? Nessie comes up with a plan to rescue Brooke and get her to enjoy having her picture taken.

BUY The Camera Shy Monster HERE

The Day My Parents Got Lost by Susette Williams

Has your child ever wandered off–or do you worry that they will?

‘The Day My Parents Got Lost’ is a fun story that gives parents and teachers the opportunity to talk with children about the importance of staying together when you go places, especially amusement parks, so that nobody gets lost.

I remember when my oldest daughter wandered off in a store when she was a toddler. She was so upset with us and blamed us for leaving her. Obviously we didn’t leave her–but in her mind we were the ones who wandered off. All these years later, that fearful time, when she wandered away, is still in my mind. Unfortunately, in today’s society, we have to teach our children about ‘stranger danger’ and staying with us in stores and crowds. This story is a fun way to convey the importance of staying together without scaring them about the possible dangers–that even we don’t want to think about–that lurk out there in the real world.

BUY The Day My Parents Got Lost HERE

Wacky Wishes by Susette Williams

What would you wish for if you could have anything you wanted?

Tommy and Suzie find a wishing well and like children do,
they begin making wishes. Imagine their surprise when their wishes start to
come true! Are spacesuits the new dress code at school? What’s Tommy going to
do with three heads? You’ve heard of, “Be careful what you wish for, you just
might get it.” When Tommy and Suzie’s wishing gets out of hand, will they be
able to wish away the mess they’ve created before their wishes run out?

BUY Wacky Wishes HERE

Sarge Gets a Timeout by Susette Williams

A boy and his dog’s friendship are tested when lies and betrayal come between them. Is revenge a viable teaching tool or can the two come to an understanding and regain their friendship?

It’s a battle of wits against boy and beast in which the two find out if a dog truly is man’s best friend.

BUY Sarge Gets a Timeout HERE

Bubbles Day by Ally Nathaniel

Bubbles, a four years old girl, loves bubbles. She loves watching them, she loves touching them and she wants to learn how to blow them all by herself. Do you think it’s easy? Will Bubbles be able to blow bubbles without any help?

BUY Bubbles Day HERE

My Snow Day by Ally Nathaniel

The perfect Christmas book that will empower your child.

It’s the first day of snow and Gabbi and her siblings are about to get creative.

They have the most brilliant idea: they will build the best snow-woman ever!

This book will not only empower your child by sending the message that children can trust their own thinking and ideas, and implement them all by themselves, but will also emphasize the importance of team work.

BUY My Snow Day HERE

Terry Treetop and the Lost Egg by Tali Carmi

This fun children’s picture book is about a boy with red hair and freckles named Terry, yet everybody calls him Terry Treetop because he loves climbing trees. Terry finds a small egg, and his quest is to bring it back home to its mom. But where is the egg’s home? Does the egg belong to a turtle on the sand or a crocodile’s spring water? Did it come from a frog in a pond or a chicken in the wild?

BUY Terry Treetop and the Lost Egg HERE

Terry Treetop Finds New Friends by Tali Carmi

Want to Help Your Kids Win Friends?
#1 Best seller in Children’s Action & Adventure Books !
(Animal Habitats & Environment children’s book collection)

This is a wonderful book about a boy named Terry, but everybody calls him Terry Treetop because he loves climbing trees. Terry was alone, so he went on a journey to find new friends to invite to his new tree house. He almost gives up when a new opportunity comes his way.

Will Terry use this opportunity to find new friends?

BUY Terry Treetop Finds New Friends HERE

Where is My Home? (Terry Treetop Series) by Tali Carmi

This fun children’s picture book is about a boy with red hair and freckles named Terry, yet everybody calls him Terry Treetop because he loves climbing trees.

Terry is chasing a beautiful butterfly and wants to go back home.

But where is Terry’s home?
And how can he find his way home?
Does the rabbit in the borrow know? Does the beaver in the lodge know?
Maybe the fawn’s mother knows? Or can Susanne the squirrel help him?

BUY Where is My Home? (Terry Treetop Series) HERE

Just The Way I Am by Idan Hadari

This is a touching and funny story, about a young child that discovers that he has a birthmark on his hand. He learns how to deal with it right up to the surprising end.

A great deal of time and effort was invested in the illustrations of this book, as well as the idea behind the story, and binding it all together into a lovely children’s story with great values.

If you would like that your child not misses out on opportunities in life because of his/her lack self-confidence; whether it be public speaking; taking on leadership roles, or asking someone for a date; then we should teach them the lessons of how to face the challenges and situations they may not be equipped to handle, while they are still young, and before it is too late. Self-esteem determines how successful they will become. Low self-esteem and confidence can affect even the most powerful men and women, no matter how smart, educated or “attractive” they are.

BUY Just The Way I Am HERE

Andrew’s Claim to Fame by Idan Hadari

This children’s book is a touching story, full with all sort of feelings & emotions that you can share with your child. They might have a problem in school/pre-school or any other social activity to win friends or to be noticed an accepted as “One of the group”.

Would your children like to be famous as soon as possible?
Are they impatient about life in general (I want this and right now!)?
Are they unaware of their gifts?
Are they dreamers, but don’t have enough faith?

This is a touching and funny story, about a young child that wants to be famous ASAP.
He learns how to deal with it right up to the surprising end. A great deal of time and effort was invested in the illustrations of this book, as well as the idea behind the story, and binding it all together into a lovely children’s story with great values.

BUY Andrew’s Claim to Fame HERE

Noah’s Petting Zoo by Idan Hadari

This is a wonderful children’s bedtime & dreaming story about an old house (Noah) in a new neighborhood,
which is about to be demolished to make way for a new building.
Andrew, a young child, who loves to play with his friends nearby, is doing everything he can to save the old house.

Will Andrew be able to save the old house Noah?

Well, you’ll just have to read the book to find out what happened.

More about this Children’s Zoo Book:
The short story demonstrates to children how to crusade for what they believe in; to be more environmental friendly;
how to help one’s fellow man; what true friendship is; and of course, to like and to play with all of the adorable animals in the story.

Bonus – A FREE Video Book Inside

BUY Noah’s Petting Zoo HERE

CHRISTIAN FICTION

Shadows of Doubt by Susette Williams

Raffealle Gellermine has a very protective uncle and two protective brothers. They never like the men she brings home. Mathew Flannigan has a past, but for the life of her, she can’t figure out why her Uncle Rob and her brothers are trying to encourage a relationship between them. Could her brothers be right? Does she unconsciously choose the wrong type of men? Can she trust Mathew? Especially with her heart?

Will shadows of doubt keep Raffealle from finding true love? Or will Mathew steal more than her heart?

BUY Shadows of Doubt HERE

Falling in Love by Susette Williams

Katie Morgan has her future planned. It doesn’t include becoming serious about anyone before she achieves her goals, not even her handsome boss. Just because she does not have time to date, doesn’t mean her boss shouldn’t. Her new mission…to make her boss happy, whether or not he wants to be.

Wade McAlester fell in love with Katie the first day she walked into his clinic looking for a job. He hired her, content to settle for friendship until she lives out her dream of becoming a vet. Against his better judgment, Wade allows her to fix him up with a couple of her friends. The dates are disastrous. He can’t believe the kind of women Katie seems to think he’d enjoy spending his life with. However, when Wade’s old colleague, Dr. Laura Redmond shows up, Katie is rethinking how happy she wants her boss to be, and with whom. Definitely not the gorgeous doctor.

BUY Falling in Love HERE

Honorable Intentions by Susette Williams

Have you ever wished you had a second chance with someone?

Brand Stanford married Monica because she claimed to be carrying his child. Their marriage was one of convenience–for her. When they had finally become a happy family, Monica was killed in a skiing accident. Now, Brand is faced with having to raise their three-year-old daughter on his own.

Tessa Duggan’s family had been lifelong friends with the Stanfords; and even remained in contact with them after moving out of state. Tessa kept secrets to herself for nearly ten years. She’d loved Brand for as long as she could remember.

Having raised a son on her own, Tessa knows what it’s like to be a single parent. When Brand’s wife dies in a skiing accident, Tessa agrees to help Brand’s mother take care of his three-year-old daughter during the summer.

Is it a chance for them to start over again? Or will Brand break her heart the second time around?

BUY Honorable Intentions HERE

Christmas in Nashville by Elaine Littau

Bill and Betty Wall’s popularity in the Country Music Scene is growing. Looking from the outside-in everything about her life seems perfect. Being a newlywed is nothing like she imagined and worry about Joey, her brother who is MIA from the Vietnam War, keeps her up at night.

Betty’s parents had tried everything they could think of to get information about him only to find that he was released from a POW camp and sent to the USA. Where could he be? Why didn’t he come home to Oklahoma?

After receiving a letter from a private investigator in regards to the child she put up for adoption over two years ago, Betty’s life was further complicated. Her hopes were high that she might be able to mother the child she gave away only to be faced with court appearances and setbacks that stretched her faith in God to the limit.

BUY Christmas in Nashville HERE

Walk Slowly Through the Dark by Elaine Littau

As soon as the wedding bells stopped ringing Roy and June Miller had to make adjustments in living as a married couple. Roy was a rough and gritty lawman who struggled to express emotions for his wife. June was a love-starved woman who had never heard words of endearment expressed in the way her heart needed. Would a separation make the marriage stronger or kill the love that had begun to grow? Set in the 1880s, Walk Slowly Through the Dark, takes the reader into the high altitude of a mountain top in Colorado. New characters are introduced and familiar characters face their own walk through the dark in hopes of reaching the light.

BUY Walk Slowly Through the Dark HERE

Capture the Wandering Heart by Elaine Littau

In 1866 Palo Duro Canyon, Texas, a medicine woman’s skills were put to the test as her little boy, Nobel, watched. A series of events began on that day and eventually drove him from the place that he loved until, years later, he returned to the canyon with his wife, Myrtle, and their children, There they fight against evil from the past and present.
Myrtle and her friend, Sally, were rescued from a brothel as children. Sally takes the arduous trip to Texas in search of the mother who sold her to the evil man who took the girls to the mining camps of Colorado.

Filled with romance, adventure, and history, Capture the Wandering Heart will hold you to the last page.

BUY Capture the Wandering Heart HERE

Time and Again by Deborah Heal

It’s like being there. . . only you can fast forward or rewind.

Abby thinks tutoring a “disadvantaged adolescent” as her college service project will be a snap. But the girl has been closed down ever since her parents’ divorce, especially since she was forced to move to a dilapidated old house. But then their crazy computer program invites them to “Take a Virtual Tour”…a tour of the past when the house was new and a girl named Charlotte Miles lived there 160 years before.

BUY Time and Again HERE

Unclaimed Legacy by Deborah Heal

The olden days aren’t all they’re cracked up to be . . .

Abby’s time-surfing software comes in handy when she and her friends agree to help the “Old Dears” next door with their family tree. Except they learn more about one of the ladies’ ancestors than they ever wanted to know. Convicted in 1871 of murder and arson, Reuben Buchanan is a blight on the family’s reputation. But was he really guilty? Abby and John must get inside the mind of a murderer to find out.

BUY Unclaimed Legacy HERE

Every Hill and Mountain by Deborah Heal

Visiting another century…not the summer vacation she had
planned.

Those who have read Time and Again and Unclaimed Legacy know that Abby Thomas is a college student on a summer service project. And they know that she has discovered a strange computer program that lets her fast-forward and rewind life. Not her own, of course, but those of the people who used to live in old houses. But “time-surfing” in the Old Slave House is almost too much to bear. Yet Abby and her friends are reminded that God is in the business of redemption–that one day he’ll make all things new.

BUY Every Hill and Mountain HERE

A Heart’s Home by Laura J Marshall

S et in 1746, India

Born in England and raised in India by her father after her mother’s untimely death, Asyra has been ostracized from her small village most of her life. News of her impending marriage arranged by her grandmother back in England only serves to confuse her further about who she is and where she fits in. When Madras is attacked by the French before Asyra’s ship sails, she must pretend to be the wife of her grandmother’s agent, who happens to be the elder brother of her intended. Can she move beyond prejudice to find her place in the world?

BUY A Heart’s Home HERE

A Brother’s Vow by Naty Matos

Randall Benson didn’t think life could be any better. His job with the family business allowed him to travel and meet new people. His relationship with his girlfriend the model, gave his access to all the red carpet events and parties, yet there was no requirement for him to be faithful. Although his family doesn’t approve of his careless lifestyle, they love him and do whatever they can to keep him from self-destructing. Yet Randall’s only concern is Randall.

Randall’s world begins to come undone after a series of unexpected events. As Randall tries to settle down and become more dependable , his twin brother Brian seems to be headed down a path that Randall is way too familiar. Brian makes an unusual request that nonchalantly he agrees to keep. He never thought that he would have to keep his word, but he does. As Randall struggles to fulfill his promise to his brother, he is confronted with challenges from his past. Will he succumb to his past and risk losing everything he’s worked so hard to accomplish?

BUY A Brother’s Vow HERE

Charlie’s Angel by Samantha Fury

Charlie’s life in Northern Ohio is ordinary and consistent. When her dad loses his job, fighting becomes an everyday event. Moving in with her sister only makes matters worse. Her life is turned upside down. In a desperate attempt to find a safe haven,she ends up on the streets of Chicago.

Here she’s introduced to a different kind of world. A place where crime lords and women of the night come out to play. Charlie finds herself at the mercy of Rico DeLusa, a local crime lord. When she begins having feelings for one of Rico’s employees, Angel Blackwell, she wonders if she’s out of her element. Is she being drawn into their world, instead of being a light in a dark place?

Blackmail, prostitution and drugs were never a part of her life, but they are now. Charlie finds herself in the middle of a fight between good and evil. She needs the strength to overcome, the wisdom to make the right choices, and the insight to follow what is right Instead of listening to her heart.

BUY Charlie’s Angel HERE

The Assumption of Guilt by Amanda Tru

Nobody stops to think what it would be like to be arrested. That just doesn’t happen to normal people, right?

When a major theft happens at a party she’s attending, Sophie James finds herself the prime suspect. Has she been framed or was she just in the wrong place at the wrong time? Now Sophie must convince the police, along with her cop boyfriend, that she’s innocent. With no record, no motive, and no evidence, that shouldn’t be difficult.

Then why does no one seem to believe her?

BUY The Assumption of Guilt HERE

Babel’s First Light by Sherry Chamblee

Her secret could doom the world. His honesty could save it.

Jaiyl had felt many things in her young life – betrayal, fear, loneliness, anger – but never the love of a family. She was trained only to keep the family’s many secrets.

She was different, set apart, special they said – which really meant alone.
Until one day, everything changed.

Jaiyl must come to trust God, and those around her, or all was lost.

Van knew there was an entire world out there beyond his mountains, but he could never quite bring himself to get up and go see it. Then someone from out there came to him. He gets thrown into a fight he didn’t start, with powerful people who don’t want to be found. He has to figure out what really conquers all, before it’s too late.

Jaiyl is all secrets and fear, Van has nothing to hide, nothing to fear. Together they must fight for the freedom of those they love.

BUY Babel’s First Light HERE

Matchmaker, Matchmaker by Sherry Chamblee

When a new guy comes to town, it’s time for the matchmaking to begin. Jack Adams came to Paradise because of a teaching job at the local Christian school, but he soon realizes that there are people in the church who have much bigger plans for him.

With at least two eligible, unattached young ladies in the church, Jack finds himself the gold medal prize in a matchmaking competition worthy of the Olympics. Can he avoid being handed over in the winner’s circle? Will love find him anyway?

BUY Matchmaker, Matchmaker HERE

Words of Jesus Bible American Standard Version edition prepared by Russell Sherrard

Words of Jesus Bible – American Standard Version. This Bible is NOT a complete Bible, it just contains the words of Jesus. Therefore, it does not contain any of the Old Testament. If you look at any Bible that has “a red letter edition” you will have a “Words of Jesus Bible”. Since the Kindle is in black, white, and shades of gray, you cannot easily tell what the Words of Jesus are. This edition puts the words of Jesus in Red. On the Kindle they appear a lighter gray than the rest of the text. Of course, on the Kindle apps for iPhone, iPad, Blackberry, Kindle for PC, Kindle for Mac or the Kindle Fire these words appear in red. To try and keep the context the entire verse which Jesus speaks is included.

BUY Words of Jesus Bible American Standard Version HERE

Words of Jesus Bible King James Version edition prepared by Russell Sherrard

Words of Jesus Bible – King James Version. This Bible is NOT a complete Bible, it just contains the words of Jesus. Therefore, it does not contain any of the Old Testament. If you look at any Bible that has “a red letter edition” you will have a “Words of Jesus Bible”. Since the Kindle is in black, white, and shades of gray, you cannot easily tell what the Words of Jesus are. This edition puts the words of Jesus in Red. On the Kindle they appear a lighter grey than the rest of the text. Of course, on the Kindle apps for iPhone, iPad, Blackberry, Kindle for PC, Kindle for Mac or the Kindle Fire these words appear in red. To try and keep the context the entire verse which Jesus speaks is included.

BUY Words of Jesus Bible King James Version HERE

Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version edition prepared by Russell Sherrard

Long Ago, when the Roman Empire was at the height of its glory, a common saying was “All Roads Lead to Rome.” I want to tell you about a very special road — a road that existed then and still exists now. This road, now almost 2,000 years old, has never led to Rome. Yet, strangely enough, it is called the Romans Road.

This takes the reader to selected passages in the Book of Romans in the Bible to explain the plan of Salvation. This is the ideal way to share the gospel using your Kindle. The reader can also read the entire book of Romans un-interrupted.

BUY Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version HERE

Is Today Thanksgiving?

Growing up I remembered the joy of Thanksgiving Day. I would wake up early to watch the Macy’s Day Parade, while my mother would be in the kitchen making our Thanksgiving meal. She cooked for our lunch as our neighbor across the street always brought us a plate from their meal for our dinner. So it was super neat. You got to eat turkey twice but different turkey and sides.
As an adult for some reason Thanksgiving was the highlight of the holidays for me. I was always invited somewhere for Christmas and we had a neighborhood tradition for New Years Eve, so I hosted every Thanksgiving. The day before, I cooked until late hours in the night. I made sure my Christmas tree was up because in my mind it was going to be my only chance for others to see it. It was a very exciting time.
I know times change, but there’s something very wrong about what I see starting to happen this year. I get the whole Black Friday thing. I’ve never participated and if you ever catch me at 2 am in the cold waiting for a store to open to buy anything, you have my full permission to commit me. But I do get the chase for a sale, the opportunity to buy things at a better price for the holidays (although those are not really sales, but that’s a different argument). However this year we have moved it to Thursday. There are stores that are opening all day on Thanksgiving Day for people to go buy stuff. Can’t we just wait a day?
I also understand that there’s people that rather be in the stores than at home with their families for whatever reason, but sometimes we have to think about others as well. This is a time to be thankful for everything we have, and sometimes we do not realize how much we DO have? If you’re reading this post, it means you have some kind of device and internet access to read it. It also means that you are literate, when there are tons of people without the ability to read. It means that you’re not blind, when some wish they could see anything. If you are standing by the door of a store or find yourself in one, it means you have means of transportation, that you have health, that you have money or balance on that credit card to make the purchase. Those are things to be thankful for. But you also have a choice, the person working at that store doesn’t.

When you sign up for a career as a doctor, a nurse, a fireman or a policeman you know that the job has no holidays. When you where hired for a retail store you expected that you could spend the holidays with your loved ones.
Do you remember the movie Scrooge? Do you remember Tim’s mom who was forced to go to work on Christmas Day out of her boss’ greed? She was a single mother trying to provide for her kids and all she wanted was some time with them. How many of those men and women we have taken from their families today over a sweater, a tablet or a television set that could have waited until tomorrow?
In case you’re missing it, this is what is really about:

Stay warm, be safe.
Happy Thanksgiving!

Gratitude in My Heart

As most of my readers know I am in the middle of NaNoWriMo. This is my 5th year in this challenge and probably the most challenging of all the ones I’ve done so far. When I did my first NaNo in 2009, I had never written a novel, I didn’t have a blog. I didn’t have a twitter account or a Facebook author page. I didn’t have the slightest idea of what I was doing except for the fact that God was burning things inside of me to write.

Since then I’ve met lots of wonderful people, some authors, and some readers. I’ve had the opportunity to learn so much and at the time I’m writing this post I’ve been blessed with the fact of publishing 4 books. To me that’s amazing and the Glory is all to and for The Lord who has seen me through this journey.

I’m also very grateful for each of you that have joined me in this adventure and I give you my word that the best is yet to come.

Having said all that, I’ve been thinking on how I could thank all my readers for all their support. I’ve decided to place ALL MY BOOKS on sale during the month of November. This will give you the opportunity to get any of them that you have not obtained already or to gift it to someone that you wish had read it.  Here’s the breakdown in the order they were published

October 2011 Growth Lessons (From 2.99) $1.99  Amazon, Nook and Smashwords

clip_image002.pngThis was my first book. This one is my only non-fiction so far. I call it a devotional because you don’t it just includes life lessons that The Lord showed me during my first year of coming back to him and my first year into taking the plunge of writing seriously.  This is what some of the reviews have said

I enjoyed the book and could recommend it wholeheartedly with that one proviso. ”

June 2013 The Road Home (From 4.99) $2.99 Amazon, Nook and Smashwords

clip_image002.pngI have to admit that I have a special attachment to this book.  There are some parts of this book that come from my life experiences, but it was also my first work of fiction and also my first NaNoWriMo project. I learned a lot about myself writing this book. This is what the reviewers have said.

 

November 2012 Season’s Greetings from Amelia (From 2.99) $1.50 Amazon, Nook and Smashwords

clip_image002.jpgThis was a very fun novella to write. I love crime shows and was fascinated with serial killer stories so I wanted to create my own, but with a twist.  This is was reviewers have said.

 

 

 

October 2013 A Brother’s Vow (From $7.99) $3.50 Amazon, Nook and Smashwords

A Brother's Vow (Final)This is the last book I published. This book has a complicated plot. This was the first time I had challenged myself to have a book with these many characters where they all shine on their own. This one too started as a NaNo project. It’s a story that I personally enjoy reading beyond the fact that I wrote it.  This is what the reviewers are saying.

“This is a story about interconnected lives and the consequences of the actions of everybody in the family. It’s not just about one black sheep and his struggle to change. The spiritual lessons you can learn from each member of the Benson family surprise you as you make your way through this complex story and navigate their successes and failures. This isn’t women’s fiction. It’s complex adult fiction with a message for everyone who has promises to keep” Mary Findley

Think about it for just $10 you can get all four :) So now that the holidays are here and you get some down time, stock up on good reading materials or stuff those e-readers that you are giving out as Christmas presents.

As always, Thanks You for your support. Until next time… be blessed.

CrossReads Book Blast: Carlene Havel’s “Here Today Gone Tomorrow”

Here Today Gone Tomorrow

By Carlene Havel

About the Book

Disappointed, dumped, divorced. Everything Casey Slaughter counted on is gone. While contemporaries start their families, Casey works two jobs to haul herself out of debt. Friends and family recommend a new husband to solve all her problems, but Casey resists their well-intentioned advice. Although she longs for a soul mate, the last thing her flattened self-esteem needs is more rejection—and comparisons to her beautiful, talented older sister do nothing to enhance Casey’s confidence. Unable to have children, she feels she has nothing to offer in marriage. Will bitterness and insecurity destroy her, or can renewed faith in God provide some measure of comfort for this wounded heart? Can Casey ever find love again, or will a string of disasters keep her forever on the run?

LINK to KINDLE | LINK to PAPERBACK

Carleen picCarlene Havel has lived in numerous US states, the Philippines, and Turkey. Like most writers, Carlene has always loved to read, and her taste is eclectic. Her other hobbies include sewing, knitting, crochet and embroidery. She especially enjoys Bible study, normally devoting one day each week delving into the scriptures with a small focus group. The Havels make their home in San Antonio, Texas, in the midst of a big, extended family.


Follow Carlene Havel

Website | Twitter

Enter to Win a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

Enter below to enter a $50 Amazon gift card, sponsored by author Carlene Havel!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This book blast is hosted by Crossreads.We would like to send out a special THANK YOU to all of the CrossReads book blast bloggers!

Book Blast: The 21 Day Challenge!

Take the 21 Day Challenge!

Get 5 FREE eBooks – 2 Days Only

10/17/13 and 10/18/13

PLUS enter to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

Why 21 Days?

It’s a commonly known fact that it takes 21 days to form a new habit. You may spend 21 days trying to form a good exercise routine or kick a bad habit, but what about taking 21 days to form a new spiritual habit? .

That’s the reason for the 21 days series – to provide you with 21 days worth of biblical devotions to help you form new habits that draw you closer to Christ. And for two days only (October 17th-18th, 2013) we’re giving all 5 books away for free. After that, they will be available for only 99 cents each.

So what do you say? Will you join us in strengthening your walk with God? If so, download one or all of the books below at no cost to you during our free promotion – and scroll down to enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card as our gift to you!

Be Inspired…Join the 21 Day Challenge!

Download 5 Free eBooks for 2 Days Only

Book #1:
21 Days of Generosity

generosity challenge

Living a Life of Generosity: 21 Days of Generosity Challenge

  • Do you want to live a life of generosity?
  • Do you want your life to be a blessing to others?
  • Do you want to have a giving spirit that overflows from a heart that is fully trusting in God as provider?

If so, consider embarking on this 21 Days of Generosity through this short but powerful eBook.

Download on Kindle Here

Book #2:
21 Days of Faith

faith challenge

Living a Life of Faith: 21 Days of Faith Challenge

  • Do you want to live a life of faith?
  • Do you want your faith to be more than simply saying “I believe in God”?
  • Do you want to have a genuine faith that overflows from a heart that is fully trusting in God in every area of your life?

If so, consider embarking on this 21 Days of Faith Challenge through this short but powerful eBook.

Download on Kindle Here

Book #3:
21 Days of Gratitude

gratitude challenge

During a season of transition in my life, I found myself overwhelmed with negative emotions like self-pity and a complaining spirit. It was as if a dark cloud had descended over me. I prayed and asked God for wisdom on how to overcome these negative emotions. And I sensed Him leading me to do this 21 days of gratitude challenge.

Over the course of the 21 days, God began to change me as I spent intentional time being grateful for all I have been given. I did this through writing in my journal each day and also sending a hand-written thank you note to someone different each day.

And now I want to share what I learned with you in the short, but powerful book.

Download on Kindle Here

Book #4:
21 Teen Devotionals… for Girls!

teen devotionals for girls

Our lives are ruled by habits. We are defined by them. How our days play out, how we act and react, and even how we eat, sleep and talk are all affected by our habits – for better or for worse. It’s said that it takes 21 days to form a new habit or break an old one, so why not spend the next 21 days forming a habit of spending time with God? If you’ve got 21 days, we’ve got 21 devotions specifically written for today’s teen girls.

Are you up for forming a habit of spending time with your Creator? If so, download this book and get started on these devotionals!

Book #5:
21 Teen Devotionals… for Guys!

teen devotionals for guys

Teen Devotionals… for Guys!, brought to you by FindYourTrueStrength.com, are written for teen guys who want to find their true strength in Christ, these devotions designed to be read, pondered on and applied to daily life.

We want you to know that the Bible isn’t just a book that’s over 2000 years old. It’s completely applicable to our lives today – even as teenagers. We know that girls and guys don’t face the same issues in high school – not even close. So these devotions were written with today’s teen guys in mind.

Go ahead. Dig in. Find your true strength in Christ.

Download on Kindle Here

Enter to Win a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

Enter below to win a $50 amazon gift card, sponsored by Body and Soul Publishing

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Do we honor God through our praise?

This past weekend I went to get my nails and feet done. This is one of my once a month guilty pleasures that I’ve learned to keep up as my to do thing for myself. While I was waiting for my “nail guy”, someone else had started my pedicure. In the meantime I was reading a bible study on my phone and I came across this scripture…

Mark 7:6-13 NLT “Jesus replied, “You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you, for he wrote, ‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship is a farce, for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God.’ For you ignore God’s law and substitute your own tradition.” Then he said, “You skillfully sidestep God’s law in order to hold on to your own tradition. For instance, Moses gave you this law from God: ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘anyone who speaks disrespectfully of father or mother must be put to death.’ But you say it is all right for people to say to their parents, ‘Sorry, I can’t help you. For I have vowed to give to God what I would have given to you.’ In this way, you let them disregard their needy parents. And so you cancel the word of God in order to hand down your own tradition. And this is only one example among many others.”

Some twenty minutes later my “nail guy” and we were carrying on a conversation. He pointed out to a guy who looked a lot like him. It was his younger brother. The young fellow didn’t look happy. He explained that the guy had been at home without a job or schooling and their mother, the owner of the shop, had made him come work with them. The guy was not pleased, but didn’t feel like he had a choice, so he had been coming to work.

This narrative reminded me of the scripture I had just read. And there’s so many things that I got from this scripture.

  • The religiosity in our world, where “believers” operate by religion and not love
  • The ideas and doctrines that we see that stray from the teachings from the bible.
  • The disrespect that we see against the older generations
  • The lack of respect that we see in our younger generations towards their parents

My mother lives in an independent living place and when I visit her she tells me the stories of many of her neighbors who are sick or in need of help and support but there’s nobody to attend their needs. My question to her always is do they have family? The sad answer is always yes.

The way I saw the last part was when people go to church, are very involved, but do not have time to tend to their elderly parents. Those who help every charity, but their parents are in a home without anyone who would buy them toothpaste or a soda.

How does this relate to my nail salon experience? I’ve seen teenagers and young adults snap at their parents when given a directive. This young man, although he didn’t want to be there, he respected what his mother asked of him. Even more, the one telling me the story has been working in that shop for 6 years, although he’s licensed to do something else that he eventually wants to pursue. But he always tells me that he will be there while his mother needs him. He plans to train his brother to see if that would be his opportunity to move on, but until his mother is covered he will not move.  And he does his job with excellency even though its something he doesn’t care for.

It makes me reflect on the following questions:

  • Have I honored God by properly honoring my parents?
  • Do I honor what God wants me to do? Or do I follow my wishes?
  • How is my worship? Is it heartfelt or do I just follow the tradition and customs?

I think is a lot to digest but a great food for thought

ABVCheck out my new book, A Brother’s Vow… availabe on Amazon.com, Barnes & Nobles and Smashwords

Just $3.99 See how this family dynamics worked together and how honoring or dishonoring each of these characters were to their parents and to the will of God.

Also remember that the book giveaway is still open, read more about that here.

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