Friday, May 31, 2013

Returning to the Loft, Elizabeth Maddrey


We welcome back contemporary romance writer, Elizabeth Maddey.



Hello again, Elizabeth, and congratulations on your second book of the Grant Us Grace series.



Is there a story behind Courage to Change?

Not really for the main plot. As I was writing Wisdom to Know, I kind of fell in love with Allison (she’s a minor character in the first book) and I knew I wanted to write her a happily ever after next. When I got started with this story, in came Lindsey. She wasn’t anyone I’d ever planned on writing into a book, but she needed to be there. Lindsey is the pregnant teen that Allison and Phil work with during the development of their romance – and she’s very dear to my heart because she has pieces of my son’s birthmother in her.

What’s your favorite genre of writing?

This is hard for me. I love contemporary romance (probably semi-obvious since that’s what my first two published novels have been.) But I also really enjoy speculative fiction. When the initial 3 novels in the Grant Us Grace series are wrapped, I may dust off one of my spec fic ideas and see if I can get it finished – it’s been percolating for a while and I’m starting to itch to get back to it. Though I have several more ideas for romances percolating too – so we’ll see what ends up getting the priority.

Do you believe in writer’s block? If so how often do you get it? How do you fix it?

You know, I do believe in writer’s block. But I also acknowledge that it’s more a function of getting in my own way than anything else. I face a few minutes of it every time I sit down at the computer. It feels like every doubt and fear crashes down on my head and I think to myself, “Who am I kidding?” Then I start typing. I just make myself write – once I’m started, everything else gets pushed to the back and I can move on. What I crank out those first few minutes isn’t always worth reading, but hey, that’s what editing is for.

Have you ever written fan fiction?

It’s almost embarrassing to admit, but I have – it was a collaborative effort though. My sister and I wrote several Transformers episodes when I was in middle school. We both loved that cartoon. Of course, being girls, we introduced some female transformers (Autobots only) to make it a little more balanced.

Do you ever go back to an old idea long after you abandoned it?

I do – frequently! My first book, Wisdom to Know, was actually an idea I started in 2001 and abandoned about 30,000 words in. I went back to it for NaNoWriMo in 2010. I did rewrite a bunch of those first chapters, but the core idea was the same.

Are you concerned with spelling and grammar as you write?

I am. I’m just a tad too much of a perfectionist to do otherwise. I have finally gotten out of the habit of trying to edit while I write (that doesn’t work for me – I won’t get anything done if I let myself critique as I go), but when that red squiggle comes up under a word, I have to go fix it. Thankfully, I’m kind of a spelling and grammar nerd, so I don’t get too many issues out of the gate.

How do you find the time to write?

I have to go out of my way to make the time or it doesn’t happen. Most days I use at least part of nap and quiet time (I have two young boys) for writing (or writing related activities.) Then once they’re in bed, if my husband and I aren’t going to do something together, he’ll usually play a video game on his computer and I’ll write. Our desks are right next to each other, so it still counts as being together in my world – and we’ll chat while we’re each doing our thing. With those two block of time, I can usually manage at least 2 hours, and if I’m on a roll, 2 hours will get me 1,500 – 3,000 words.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
Serenity to Accept, the third book in the Grant Us Grace series, is due out September 10, 2013. It’s the story of Phil’s (from Courage to Change) sister, Karin. She’s never had much use for God – there’s been too much pain in her life for her to accept that God is anything other than, at best, disinterested or, at worst, sadistic. Until she meets Jason Garcia. After his own mistakes of the past, Jason is committed to dating only Christians, but decides to bend his rule for her if she’ll come to church with him. Karin figures it’s worth finding out more if it means she gets to spend time with Jason. As their friendship grows, both will have to decide if they’ll accept the path God has for them, even if it means losing each other.
This sounds like a great series. Thanks for sharing with us!
Connect with Elizabeth Maddey at:

Her Website
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest for Courage To Change

Elizabeth Maddrey is giving away a copy of Courage To ChangeTo be entered in the giveaway, leave a comment along with your e-mail address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post for the author. Please note: The giveaway is for U.S. addresses only.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Courage To Change by Elizabeth Maddrey



Should you be willing to change for love?

When Phil Reid became a Christian and stopped drinking, his hard-partying wife Brandi divorced him. Reeling and betrayed, he becomes convinced Christians should never remarry, and resolves to guard his heart.

Allison Vasak has everything in her life under control, except for one thing. Her heart is irresistibly drawn to fellow attorney and coworker, Phil. Though she knows his history and believes that women should not initiate relationships, she longs to make her feelings known.

As Phil and Allison work closely together to help a pregnant teen, both must reevaluate their convictions. But when Brandi discovers Phil's new relationship, she decides that though she doesn't want him, no one else can have him either. Can Phil and Allison's love weather the chaos Brandi brings into their lives? 

Excerpt



Chapter One

     “Come open the door. It’s cold out here and I’m freezing my you-know-what off.”
     “Brandi.” Phil sighed into the phone and sank onto the foot of his bed. “What are you doing here?”
     “I figured it had been a while since we partied, so I brought a six pack over to share with my husband.”
     “Ex-husband.”
     Her voice lost the playful tone and took on a hard, bitter edge. “It’s not my fault you decided to get sober. Find Jesus. All that crap. What a drag.”
     The pounding on his front door echoed up the two flights of stairs.
     “I came by to give you another chance to see what you’re missing. Let me in.”
     “I’m sorry, but no.” Phil rubbed his temples as a migraine began to build. “Go home…please.” He should just hang up. Of course, the last time he’d done that she’d made such a scene the neighbors had called the police. At least after that his mother had finally understood why he hadn’t wanted Brandi to have his new address. If he didn’t love this historic little town on the river that was still an easy commute to his job in downtown D.C., he might consider moving again and just not tell anyone. He realized Brandi had been wailing into the phone and he’d missed it. “Back up. What?”
     “I said I’ve got nowhere else to go, Phil. Let me in.”
     The rational side of his mind argued against the tug of guilt. Steeling himself against the inevitable tirade, he took a deep breath. “You don’t have a place here, either. Now, you need to leave before the neighbors get concerned.”
     He flinched and held the phone away from his head at the string of threats and epithets she unleashed. When she was finally quiet he put the phone back to his ear. “I’m hanging up now. Good night, Brandi.”    He clicked the phone off as she started in again. The phone rang almost immediately. Phil cradled his head in his hands and ignored it. When his answering machine picked up she started ranting right where she’d left off. He groaned and went to the bathroom for some aspirin.
     He’d never expected things to turn out this way. He’d been filled with such joy when he understood and accepted what Christ offered; he’d assumed Brandi would share in his excitement. Boy, had that been a miscalculation.
     Phil shook two aspirin into his hand. He wouldn’t trade his relationship with God for anything. If only he’d been more willing to hear God calling him before he made the mistake of marrying Brandi in the first place. Of course, he wasn’t listening to anything about God at that point. What was it everyone always said about hindsight? The phone was ringing again and more vicious banging echoed up from the front door. He crawled into bed fully clothed and buried his head under a pillow.
***
     Phil woke when the sun streamed through the wall of glass that made up the back side of his bedroom. The last vestiges of his headache hovered, leaving his brain foggy and his eyes sore. Grimacing, he threw an arm over his eyes. After several minutes he pushed himself out of bed, grumbling. He squinted resentfully at the cheerful sunlight as he stumbled to the bathroom. “Fine. I’m up.”
     Grabbing the bottle of aspirin, he angled toward the elevator. Lazy. Take the stairs and quit whining. With a mental shake, Phil propelled himself down two flights of stairs to the kitchen. He peeked out the sidelight window by the front door, relieved when he didn’t see Brandi curled up on the porch. Maybe she has enough sense to go somewhere else in the cold.
     He eyed the thick layer of frost on the small plot of grass that served as his front yard and noted the absence of footprints. Hopefully she’d left soon after she’d quit calling back. Phil poured coffee and gulped the first mug to chase another dose of aspirin, barely tasting it as it burned down his throat. He poured himself a refill and glared at the furiously blinking light on his answering machine. With a sigh, he sat at the little table he’d centered in the bay window at the front of the house and reached for the phone. Punching in the familiar number, he sipped his coffee and watched his neighbors leaving for work.
     The phone picked up after the first ring. “Grant Sommersby.”
     “Hi Grant, it’s Phillip Reid.”
     “Morning, Phil. I don’t imagine you’re calling this early to reschedule the golf match you owe me?”
     “Sadly, no. She came over last night. Filled up my entire answering machine tape spewing venom and hammering on the door.” He groaned and rubbed at his throbbing temples. “I haven’t heard from the neighbors yet, but I won’t be surprised when I do.”
     The sound of shuffling papers crackled across the line. “Okay. We’ve got the police report your neighbors filed last time. You still have the messages?”
     “Yeah.” Phil scrubbed his hand over his face. “She’s the only reason I keep that old tape machine instead of switching to voice mail.”
     “Well, if there are threats on the tape and we can get a neighbor’s statement we can probably get a temporary restraining order.”
     “I don’t know…”
     “Phil, she’s harassing you. Don’t you think it would be a wakeup call for her?”
     “I guess. It just seems weird for a guy to be the one requesting a TRO. You know?”
     Grant gave a sardonic laugh. “I know what you’re saying, but you’d be surprised how many men are the victims in relationships. Not saying you’re a victim, not in the traditional sense, clearly. But Brandi needs help. And more than that, as your attorney and as your friend, I just want to see you free of her.”
     Was this really the right thing to do? “Yeah, all right. I’ll be in a little after ten at this point. Can you just leave anything I need to sign with Sam at the front desk? I’ll run them across the street to you when I get in.”
     “Sure thing. Did you choose me as your attorney just for office proximity?”
     Phil laughed. “It didn’t hurt.”
     With a chuckle, Grant said goodbye.
     Phil popped the tape out of the answering machine and set it on top of his laptop bag. Filling a third cup of coffee, he headed upstairs to get ready for the day.
 ***
     Phil didn’t make it to his desk until almost eleven. He’d taken the answering machine and signed papers to Grant. Now it was just a waiting game. He still wasn’t convinced this was the right thing to do, but he needed Brandi to move on. He’d spent four of the past five years praying they could reconcile and remarry. But she had no intention of changing her lifestyle, and regardless of the shame he felt from being divorced, it was past time to let her go. Unfortunately, now she didn’t seem to want to leave. He pushed those thoughts aside. There were still a few minutes before his new clients arrived and it was time to focus on their problems rather than his own.


About The Author


Elizabeth Maddrey began writing stories as soon as she could form the letters properly and has never looked back. Though her practical nature and love of math and organization steered her into computer science for college and graduate school, she has always had one or more stories in progress to occupy her free time. When she isn’t writing, Elizabeth is a voracious consumer of books and has mastered the art of reading while undertaking just about any other activity. Her debut novel, Wisdom to Know, Book 1 of the Grant Us Grace Series, was released in January, 2013. Courage to Change (April, 2013) is the second in that series and continues the story of characters from the first book. She is also the co-author of A is for Airstrip: A Missionary’s Jungle Adventure, a children’s book based on the work of a Wycliffe missionary.

Elizabeth lives in the suburbs of Washington D.C. with her husband and their two incredibly active little boys. She invites you to interact with her at her website www.ElizabethMaddrey.com or on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ElizabethMaddrey

Purchase Courage To Change at:

Amazon
Kindle
Barnes & Noble


Elizabeth Maddrey is giving away a copy of Courage To ChangeTo be entered in the giveaway, leave a comment along with your e-mail address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post for the author. Please note: The giveaway is for U.S. addresses only.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

More Weekly Winners!

Once again we offer you  a warm welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft.

I know you want to know ... WHO WON? But before we announce our three winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to:
June Foster  who has offered her  Inspirational Romance  Deliver Us.
Adina Senft who offered her Amish Novel  Tempted Soul.
And Linda Glaz for offering her Historical Romance  With Eyes of Love
And now: We're pleased to announce this week’s winners:
Patricia Bradley has won June Foster’s  Inspirational Romance  Deliver Us.
Emma has won Adina Senft’s Amish Novel  Tempted Soul.
And Pam K has won Linda Glaz’s Historical Romance With Eyes of Love

Congratulations Winners! Remember, it's your responsibility to contact me  sharonalavy {at} gmail {dot} com) with your address so the author can send you a book. 


Subscribing by email will ensure you don't miss the winners list.


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

A Warm Welcome to Lisa Lickel

I'm thrilled to have Lisa visiting today. Read on to learn more about her life and writing:



Is there a story behind Healing Grace?
Healing Grace was the second full-length novel I wrote, very early in my career when I knew absolutely nothing about how the publishing business works, or even that it was a business. The book didn’t turn out as well as I hoped. The story comes out of a place in my heart of a time when my brother suffered a terrible health scare. While doing research I started to think about miracles, which led to how the gifts of the Spirit, particularly healing, might look in today’s world. The story blossomed from there. I got the rights back from the first publisher, and was glad to rebuild it with my new publisher.

What distracts you from writing the easiest?
The birds at the feeders outside my windows, the mail delivery, and the need to check e-mail more often than I should.

What is your strangest habit?
Either reading or thinking of my favorite parts of Ray Bradbury’s Dandelion Wine every spring. It’s an amazing book, one of my favorites. If you haven’t read it, I recommend it. The story is a very loose autobiography of the summer a young boy, Doug, realizes he’s ALIVE! He sees everything as though it’s the most spectacular adventure ever, make-believe mixed with fairytales and reality and belief in family and pure joy from that new pair of tennis shoes to ice cream to grandma’s cooking, Bradbury makes me relive memories I never had.

What makes you smile and/or laugh out loud?
I’d say things that surprise me in a good way, like the neighbor’s chickens coming to check out the bugs in our garden, but I also love the anticipation of a joke I’ve heard before or the mushiest romantic lines from a movie I can’t get enough of. Bridal wreath and lilacs in bloom. Waves. Shooting stars. Fluffy snowflakes that turn the world into fairyland.

What do you like most about the area where you live and/or grew up?
Wisconsin is like a crazy quilt. Although I grew up in a large city on Lake Michigan in southeast Wisconsin, which I loved—I’d ride my bike a mile down to explore the beach and sit on the dock—I raised my family north of there, but still close enough to go visit the water whenever I wanted. It’s Kettle Moraine country; ancient and only slightly tamed by 160 years of farming, with evidence of 10,000-year-old cultures and animal life all around. We also enjoy our farm in western Wisconsin which straddles the driftless area, landscape little changed by the last ice age, and is hilly, rolling farm country, but with Amish neighbors. Amazing.

Where is your favorite place to travel/vacation in?
It’s hard to beat northern Wisconsin…lots of museums, besides outdoor adventures of pretty much any kind. Trees, lakes and rivers, hiking and boating, camping and campfire, stars galore. Okay, yeah, mosquitoes…but, sit in the smoke for a while, and they’re not so bad.

What's your favorite meal with family and friends? (and feel free to share a recipe with us!)
My husband is fisherman and we love to eat the panfish and trout he regularly brings home. He takes care of cooking the fish and has a coating I won’t even try to recreate. I usually make a salad to go along with fish and have a cornbread recipe I enjoy making. Remember, this is Wisconsin!

Cheesy Cornbread with Bacon

1 c. unbleached flour

1 c. yellow cornmeal

1 egg

1 c. of milk

¼ c. sugar or other sweetener

2 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

3 T. solid fat of your choice (margarine, etc.)

½ c. shredded cheese of your choice

3 slices cooked and crumbled bacon

Preheat oven to 425 degrees, grease an 8x8 or 9x9 pan. Combine ingredients except cheese and bacon; mix well; then fold in shredded cheese and crumbled bacon. Spread in pan and bake about 25 minutes, until the cornbread is starting to brown and pulls away from the sides. Check with a toothpick. Cool and cut.

Where do you escape for some quiet time to reflect, pray, read, etc?
My treadmill always beckons, as does my grandmother’s wicker chair on the front porch. Now that it’s nicer weather here in Wisconsin, I’ll be taking out my kayak on some of the many lakes around my home.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
I’m excited about the release of the third book in my Buried Treasure mystery series coming out soon: The Newspaper Code, which picks up a few weeks after Hart and Judy’s daughter Elizabeth is born. Robertsville is struggling financially, and even the school where Judy teaches is crumbling. When a mysterious code is found in the newspaper inside an 1860 map quilt current newspaper editor Olivia Hargrove is sure it leads to a missing treasure. But who would kill for it? Olivia enlists Judy to help her solve the mystery.

I’m also part of a group of authors who have written a series of historical romantic themed novellas about life at the turn of the twentieth century in big cities. Brave New Century will release from the Prism Book Group. More details coming up.

Thank you all at Bookshelf!


To Buy Lisa's book, go here:

Barnes and Noble:
http://tinyurl.com/c4pddbh

Amazon:
http://tinyurl.com/bwrgap6




About Lisa:
Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin writer who lives with her husband in a hundred and sixty-year-old house built by a Great Lakes ship captain. Surrounded by books and dragons, she writes inspiring fiction. Her published novels include mystery and romance, all with a twist of grace. She has penned dozens of feature newspaper stories, short stories, magazine articles and radio theater. She is the editor in chief of Creative Wisconsin magazine. Lisa also is an avid book reviewer, a freelance editor, an editor at Port Yonder Press, a writing mentor, a hostess at Clash of the Titles.com, and enjoys blogging at theBarnDoor.net and AuthorCulturet.blogspot.com. She loves to encourage new authors.

Find her at:
http://www.LisaLickel.com.

http://www.facebook.com/authorlisalickel

Lisa is giving away a copy of Healing Grace. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.






Happy Reading!
Caroline Brown

Monday, May 27, 2013

Healing Grace by Lisa Lickel

Back Cover Blurb:

Grace Runyon could fix anyone -- until her husband developed cancer and died. Believing no one would forgive her, Grace runs from the life she knew, hoping even God wouldn’t find her in a little out-of-the-way town in Michigan. It takes a very sick man and his little boy to help her face her past, accept who she is and battle her way back to redemption. Just when they begin to hope for the future, he relapses. Grace faces the ultimate choice once again: Trusting God to work through her precious gift, or letting a terminally ill man die. What if the price is more than she can pay?







A Short Excerpt:

Putting together a whole new life after everything she’d been through was risky. She wasn’t exactly hiding, but neither did she care to let anyone know where to find her. Yet.

Time for a normal life, remember?

A good night’s sleep will do wonders.

By the time the sun faded, Grace had exhausted herself. Scrubbing the kitchen and a cubby of a room behind it she’d claim for her own took buckets of hot water and a pair of neon yellow rubber gloves, but at least she’d have a clean spot to lay her mattress and sleeping bag. Too tired to eat, she’d stretched herself out and groaned. Thirty-five-year-olds should not be this out of shape.

The room seemed to whirl. When she focused again, she stood in bright daylight, looking down into the newly-dug hole. Without looking up she knew they were there, standing around her and staring, accusing.

“Your fault! You let this happen! You let him die when you should have saved him!”

“I tried!” God knows she wanted to save Jonathan. “He was the one—he told me not to try again.”



To Buy Lisa's book, go here:

Barnes and Noble:
http://tinyurl.com/c4pddbh
Amazon:
http://tinyurl.com/bwrgap6






About Lisa:
Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin writer who lives with her husband in a hundred and sixty-year-old house built by a Great Lakes ship captain. Surrounded by books and dragons, she writes inspiring fiction. Her published novels include mystery and romance, all with a twist of grace. She has penned dozens of feature newspaper stories, short stories, magazine articles and radio theater. She is the editor in chief of Creative Wisconsin magazine. Lisa also is an avid book reviewer, a freelance editor, an editor at Port Yonder Press, a writing mentor, a hostess at Clash of the Titles.com, and enjoys blogging at theBarnDoor.net and AuthorCulturet.blogspot.com. She loves to encourage new authors.

Find her at:
http://www.LisaLickel.com.

http://www.facebook.com/authorlisalickel


Lisa is giving away a copy of Healing Grace. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses.  To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.






Happy Reading!
Caroline Brown

Sunday, May 26, 2013

A Warm Welcome to Lorna Seilstad


 
It's so good to have you here today!

What started you on your writing journey?
When I was in 4th grade I had a teacher who had us do creative writing assignments every Friday. She started each with a fun prompt. Once, we come to school and she’d put construction paper foot prints all over the walls and ceiling and we had to write how they go there. From that first story, I was hooked.

What distracts you from writing the easiest?
Social media! A lot of authors tend toward being introverts, but I’m more of an extrovert. Being around others fuels me, so when my energy starts to wan, I seek company and that can get me off track.

Which character in your new release most interested you while you wrote? Why?
I think I was most interested in capturing the three Gregory sisters’ as a whole. I wanted to make characters that would grow with each book, but I also wanted them to be true to their birth order. I wanted to capture some of the magic of sisterhood.

What is your strangest habit?
I say, “Good cow” like someone would say “good grief” and “Oh my cow” like some say “Oh my goodness.” For example, I might say, “Good cow, did you see how close that care came to us?” or “Oh my cow, it was crazy!”

What makes you smile and/or laugh out loud?
A witty sense of humor gets me every time. I have a very funny, witty sister-in-law, and whenever the two of us get together, I laugh until I cry.

What is your favorite season of the year? 
I love all four seasons for different reasons, but without a doubt, my favorite season is fall. I love the colors, the temperatures, and the sweaters. Fall is like a sweet sigh after summer’s heat and a time to brace yourself for winter.

Are there things you put off doing because you dread them?
Absolutely! My basement office is a living testament to that. It needs a BIG cleaning and purging. My next deadline is June 1. After that, I think I’ll tackle the whole area.

Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?
All of my books seem to have an element of surrendering to God’s plan rather than making a plan of your own. I think that’s something I struggle with so it shows up in my books.
When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
The next book in the Gregory Sisters Series comes out in May of 2014. It’s the middle sister Charlotte’s story and isn’t titled yet. She goes to Fannie Farmers School of Cookery. When she returns, no man will hire a woman chef, so she takes a job teaching women how to cook on their brand new gas stoves—and of course she falls in love along the way.

Thanks for joining us today, Lorna!

 

To Buy her book, go here:
Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0800721810/ref=s9_psimh_gw_p14_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=18WQ9XW32AV01B2DFNRB&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=1389517282&pf_rd_i=507846

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/when-love-calls-lorna-seilstad/1113451207?ean=9780800721817

Christianbook.comhttp://www.christianbook.com/when-love-calls-gregory-sisters/lorna-seilstad/9780800721817/pd/721810?item_code=WW&netp_id=1044761&event=ESRCG&view=details



Bio:
A history buff, antique collector, wedding coordinator, and freelance graphic designer, Lorna Seilstad is the author of Making Waves, A Great Catch, and The Ride of Her Life. A former high school English and journalism teacher, she has won several online writing contests and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Lorna lives in Council Bluffs, Iowa, with her husband. They have two children in college and one still at home.

To Connect with Lorna, go here:
Website:
www.lornaseilstad.com

Lorna Seilstad Author Page
https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Lorna-Seilstads-Fan-Page/119754468040830

Every Good Gift Blog
www.lornaseilstad.com/blog

Inkspirational Messages (group blog)
www.inkspirationalmessages.com


Lorna is giving away a copy of When Love Calls. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.


 
 
 
 
 
Happy Reading!
Caroline Brown

Saturday, May 25, 2013

When Love Calls by Lorna Seilstad

Back Cover Blurb:

When romance calls, will she choose to answer?

Hannah Gregory is good at many things, but that list does not include following rules. So when she must apply for a job as a switchboard operator to support her two sisters, she knows it won't be easy. Hello Girls must conduct themselves according to strict-and often bewildering-rules, which include absolutely no consorting with gentlemen while in training.

Hannah doubts it will be difficult to keep that rule-until a handsome young lawyer starts getting under her skin.

With historic details that bring to life the exciting first decade of the twentieth century, Lorna Seilstad weaves a charming tale of companionship that blossoms into sweet romance.


To Read an Excerpt:


April 1908 Des Moines, Iowa Did she dare? Hannah eyed the wheeled grocery store ladder resting against the shelves. If she went up that ladder again this week, she might give poor Mr. Reilly heart failure. Despite the risk of Mr. Reilly’s demise, Hannah wrapped her hand around the ladder’s rung. If the little man had a conniption, that was his fault. He should have kept his shelves better stocked or at least offered to help her. After all, she’d been waiting for nearly five minutes, and her sisters were home waiting for dinner. One can of stewed tomatoes, and her meager grocery shopping list would be complete. From its position on the upper shelf beyond her reach, the can taunted her with its flashy red label and bright green letters. It practically goaded her to come and get it. Her gaze darted to the plaque hung from a nail on the center shelf: “Please Let Us Assist You.” She’d be happy to if Mr. Reilly noticed anyone in the store besides the customers with money. As it was, she had no choice but to take matters into her own hands. Hannah glanced from the sign to the stout, long-nosed grocer. Behind the counter, he continued his chatty dialogue with the banker’s wife, turning a blind eye as her five-year-old son skipped around the mercantile like a child at the fair. Easing the wheeled ladder back and forth a few inches on its rail, Hannah watched to see if Mr. Reilly noticed. When he didn’t turn her direction, she hiked up her skirt. With one foot firmly planted on the ladder’s first step, Hannah rolled the ladder a yard to the right. After stopping beneath the elusive tomatoes, she scurried up the three flat rungs and clasped the can in her hand before hoisting it aloft like a trophy. Don’t show off. She tucked the can against her side. Just hurry up and get back down “Giddyap!” Hannah caught a glimpse of the naughty little boy riding a broom straight toward the ladder. Her breath caught. “Whoa!” The boy smacked the ladder with the broom handle. Like a ball on a billiards table, the ladder flew down the row of shelves. With the tomato can in one hand, Hannah clung to the rungs with her other. The ladder jolted to a stop at the end of the shelves. To keep from falling, she dropped the can and gripped the rungs with both hands. The can thunked into Mr. Reilly’s potato bin and sent the piled spuds cascading to the floor. Hannah scrambled off the ladder and began gathering the fallen victims of the tomato can fiasco. She headed for one of the spuds in the middle of the aisle, but the boy reached it first and gave it a hard kick. The potato thumped across the floor and rolled under the yard goods table. Mr. Reilly’s shadow loomed over her. “You? Again?” Dropping an armload of potatoes into the bin, Hannah brushed the dirt from the front of her skirt. “I apologize, Mr. Reilly. You seemed otherwise occupied with Mrs. Young, and the boy—” “The boy is lucky you didn’t kill him.” Mr. Reilly scowled and looked inside Hannah’s basket, where the tomato can now lay nestled next to a small sack of flour and a few potatoes. “Is that all you’re getting?” “Actually, I have a bit more shopping to do.” Hannah squared her shoulders. He didn’t need to know she only planned on purchasing those three items. The funds they had left needed to stretch for quite a while. “And in the future, may I recommend you don’t let small children run amok in your store.”


To Buy her book, go here:
Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0800721810/ref=s9_psimh_gw_p14_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=18WQ9XW32AV01B2DFNRB&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=1389517282&pf_rd_i=507846

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/when-love-calls-lorna-seilstad/1113451207?ean=9780800721817

Christianbook.com http://www.christianbook.com/when-love-calls-gregory-sisters/lorna-seilstad/9780800721817/pd/721810?item_code=WW&netp_id=1044761&event=ESRCG&view=details


Bio:
A history buff, antique collector, wedding coordinator, and freelance graphic designer, Lorna Seilstad is the author of Making Waves, A Great Catch, and The Ride of Her Life. A former high school English and journalism teacher, she has won several online writing contests and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Lorna lives in Council Bluffs, Iowa, with her husband. They have two children in college and one still at home.

To Connect with Lorna, go here:
Website:
www.lornaseilstad.com

Lorna Seilstad Author Page
https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Lorna-Seilstads-Fan-Page/119754468040830

Every Good Gift Blog
www.lornaseilstad.com/blog

Inkspirational Messages (group blog)
www.inkspirationalmessages.com


Lorna is giving away a copy of When Love Calls. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses.  To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.



 
 
 
 
 
 
Happy Reading!
Caroline Brown

Friday, May 24, 2013

Romantic Suspense Author, Sandra Orchard


Today we welcome Canadian author, Sandra Orchard. 

Congratulations on Book One of Port Aster Secrets! Is there a story behind Deadly Devotion?

My children were working at a local greenhouse that exported plants and I had a dream about how explosives could be transported across the border, disguised in flower shipments. How I got from that starting point to an herbal researcher sleuth is quite convoluted, but basically I needed an inciting incident to force my hero and heroine together, and so I used a tried-and-true mystery writer’s trick—I killed someone. <wink>


What started you on your writing journey?

I loved writing from childhood, but what started me writing fiction was discovering Christian romance after losing my mom to cancer when my children were very young. The characters faced similar emotions to many I was experiencing and seeing them overcome and triumph restored my hope and inspired me in countless ways.

What most easily distracts you from writing?

Emails. I tell myself I’m not going to check them, but…

What kind of books do you enjoy reading? 

I love reading the Love Inspired Suspense books because I can finish them in a night. In historicals, I’m a Karen Witemeyer fan.

Which character in your new release most interested you while you wrote? 

The hero, a former FBI agent turned small town police detective, because I did a lot of research into the psyche of police officers, disillusionment etc. and…participated in the first Writers’ Police Academy which was super cool.

What is a favorite memory from your childhood?

Summers camping with my family.

Are there things you put off doing because you dread them?

Hmm, not really. I like to delegate those things. J

Good delegaters get more done. Has some place you have traveled inspired something in your writing?

Yes, last summer my husband and I went on an Alaskan cruise to celebrate our 25th anniversary. I’m now writing Killer Cruise about art thieves on an Alaskan cruise for Love Inspired Suspense which should release in 2014.

What makes you smile and/or laugh out loud?

Watching my two year old granddaughter.

Grandchildren are great for a good smile. What is your favorite season of the year? 

Spring. I love seeing all the flowers and blossoms come back.

What's your favorite meal with family and friends? 

Anything I don’t have to cook!!!! So sorry no recipe. How about 1-800-Get-Pizza J

That's my kind of cooking! Could you share a verse or Scripture passage with us that is special to you?

The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. Proverbs 4:18 (NIV 1984) I love sunrises and this verse reminds that God’s working through each day in my life to bring me fully into his glorious light.
I understand you like to share extras with your readers about your stories. Can you tell us a little about those?
Yes, I create fun bonus features such as location pics, deleted scenes, editorial cuts and commentary, bloopers, character interviews etc. for each of my novels. They can be accessed at: http://sandraorchard.com/extras/bonus-book-features/
That sounds fantastic! When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?

Fatal Inheritance from Love Inspired Suspense releases August 2013. Here's a teaser:

“YOU DON’T BELONG HERE.” 

Someone wants to stop Becki Graw from claiming her inheritance. Police officer Joshua Rayne is just as determined to keep his beautiful neighbor safe. She may not be the tomboy Josh remembers, but she’s just as stubborn. Becki is intent on keeping her grandparents’ remote farmhouse-no matter the danger. Becki’s feelings for her childhood crush may be rekindled, but she’s seen too much to risk opening her heart. As the threats against Becki escalate, the list of suspects grows longer. Josh must convince Becki to trust him with her heart-and her life-before a madman ends their chance at happiness…permanently.

Sandra, I'm excited to take a look at Deadly Devotion! Thanks for sharing with us.

Connect with Sandra Orchard at:

Website
Blog

Sandra Orchard is giving away a copy of Deadly DevotionTo be entered in the giveaway, leave a comment along with your e-mail address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post for the author. Please note: This giveaway is for U.S. and Canada addresses only.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Deadly Devotion by Sandra Orchard


Book One of Port Aster Secrets

Kate knows the truth is out there—but if she’s right, that means a killer is out there too.

Research scientists Kate Adams and Daisy Leacock were on the brink of a breakthrough for treating depression with herbal medicine when Daisy was suddenly found dead. Kate knows that her mentor’s death wasn’t suicide or a careless accident—and she’s determined to do whatever it takes to unearth the truth about what happened to the woman who changed her life.

Former FBI agent Tom Parker is finding it hard to adjust to life back in his hometown of Port Aster. Though an old buddy gave him a job as a detective on the local police force, not everyone approves. Tom’s just trying to keep a low profile, so when Kate Adams demands he reopen the investigation into her friend’s death, he knows his job is at stake. But despite his attraction to her, Tom thinks Kate herself may have something to hide.

As evidence mounts, a web of intrigue is woven around the sleepy town of Port Aster. Can Kate uncover the truth? Or will Tom stand in her way?

Excerpt


     Two blocks from the police station, Kate parked her car curbside. Her stomach was more scrambled than her morning eggs, and her hands hadn’t stopped trembling since she marched out of Parker’s office, vowing to find Daisy’s killer.
     Was she nuts?
     What did she know about tracking down a murderer?
     She could end up his next victim.
     Her gaze darted from window to window. Okay, Kate, get a grip. No one besides a roomful of cops even knows you’re looking. She pocketed her keys and stepped out of the car. A short walk might help her calm down and figure out what to do next.
     Bright splotches of sunlight dappled the tree-lined street, but the scene felt wrong—as if even the sky had failed her. The weather should be cloudy, miserable, like she felt.
     How could Detective Parker insinuate Daisy killed herself on purpose?
     He’d acted so concerned with those soft eyes and mellow tones, and then boom, he delivered that “people are rarely what they seem” line. Well, she’d show him. Daisy was an open book—and more than that, a woman full of life and zest. She never would have killed herself.
     And Kate would prove it.
     Somehow.




About The Author

Sandra Orchard is an award-winning author of Christian romantic suspense. She writes for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line, and Revell Publishing. She lives in Niagara, Canada with her real-life-hero husband of more than twenty-five years, and writes full time…when not doting on their first grandchild.  You can learn more about Sandra’s books and bonus features at www.SandraOrchard.com or connect at www.Facebook.com/SandraOrchard




Purchase Deadly Devotion at:

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
Christian Book .com

Sandra Orchard is giving away a copy of Deadly DevotionTo be entered in the giveaway, leave a comment along with your e-mail address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post for the author. Please note: This giveaway is for U.S. and Canada addresses only.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Weekly Winners

Welcome to the Bookshelf of the Barn Door Book Loft.

Before we announce our three winners we’d like to offer a special thanks to Ramona K. Cecil  who offered her Historical Romance  Heart's Heritage.
Thanks to Jennifer Johnson who offered her Inspirational Romance  A Heart Healed.
And thanks to Alice J. Wisler  for offering her Devotional Getting Out of Bed in the Morning


And now: We're pleased to announce we have some new winners this week!


Patty has won Ramona K. Cecil’s  Historical Romance  Heart's Heritage.
Erin S. has won Jennifer Johnson’s Inspirational Romance  A Heart Healed.
And Karen K. has won Alice J. Wisler’s Devotional Getting Out of Bed in the Morning.



Congratulations Winners! Remember, it's your responsibility to contact me  sharonalavy {at} gmail {dot} com) with your address so the author can send you a book. 
Subscribing by email will ensure you don't miss the winners list. 


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