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Announcing Grace Awards 2017 Judges

Grace Awards

 

The Grace Awards is now going into its eighth year, having been extremely well received during the last seven years. This year we have a line up of stellar judges for our six fiction categories.

 

WOMEN’S FICTION/GENERAL FICTION: serious women’s and men’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Fay Lamb

Fay Lamb [Grace Awards Board Member, Lead Judge] is an author, an acquisition editor, and a freelance editor. She also loves to teach workshops for fiction writers. The last novel, FROZEN NOTES, in her Amazing Grace romantic suspense series released in September. The series also includes STALKING WILLOW, BETTER THAN REVENGE, and EVERYBODY’S BROKEN. Fay’s popular The Ties that Bind romantic series includes CHARISE, LIBBY, and HOPE. Readers are anxiously awaiting the fourth novel in the series, DELILAH, which will be released in mid-2018. Her adventurous spirit has also taken her into the realm of non-fiction with THE ART OF CHARACTERIZATION: HOW TO USE THE ELEMENTS SOF STORYTELLING TO CONNECT READERS TO AN UNFORGETTABLE CAST. Fay’s third series contracted with Write Integrity Press is entitled Serenity Key, and the first novel, STORMS IN SERENITY, released in March, 2018. Fay loves to meet readers, especially on her blogs: On the Ledge, Inner Source, and the Tactical Editor  Amazon Author Page 

Debra E Marvin
Debra E. Marvin tries not to run too far from real life but the imagination born out of being an only child has a powerful draw. Besides, the voices in her head tend to agree with all the sensible things she says. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Sisters in Crime, and serves on the board of Bridges Ministry in Seneca Falls, NY. She is published with WhiteFire Publishing, Forget Me Not Romances, Journey Fiction, and Barbour Publishing…and a judge for the Grace Awards for many years. Debra works as a program assistant at Cornell University, and enjoys her family and grandchildren, obsessively buying fabric, watching British programming and traveling with her childhood friends. Website  Amazon Author Page

Onisha Ellis

Onisha Ellis fell in love with reading in the second grade. Her favorite books were biographies written about the childhood of famous leaders and explorers. She believes that is why she prefers to read character driven novels and is especially excited to be judging women’s fiction/general fiction. When she is not reading she is a blogger for Old Things R New.

 
ROMANCE/HISTORICAL ROMANCE: primary element is love/courtship/marriage, be it set now or then
 Betty Thomason Owens

Betty Thomason Owens [Grace Awards Board Member, Lead Judge] has been writing for thirty years. She’s a multi-published, award-winning author of historical fiction, and fantasy-adventure. An active member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), she leads a critique group, and serves as vice-president/secretary of the Louisville area group. She’s a mentor, assisting other writers, and co-founder of the Inspired Prompt blog. She also serves on the planning committee of the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference. Website: Love Is The Legacy  Amazon Author Page

cuffe sisters

Sadie & Sophie Cuffe began writing together back in the 90s, but have over 120 years of together life experiences, from raising Sophie’s two kids, to farming with goat kids, chickens, dogs and cats, to building barns and houses, snowshoeing, skiing, hiking, camping… you name it. They have several novels and novellas under their belts and are currently working on book 2 in the Candle Island Mystery series. They believe with God anything is possible; and that some of the best stories aren’t hatched in creative writing class, they’re composed on the seat of a tractor. You can find them at the A Woman Like Me Bookclub on their Facebook author page where all their books are listed under the author app. They’re so modern! They love hearing from the sisterhood (and brotherhood, too, because they’re not snobs). Facebook author page  Amazon author page
 ada brownell
Ada Brownell is the sixth redhead in a family of achievers, Ada Nicholson Brownell writes with stick-to-your-soul encouragement from her Missouri home where she lives with her handsome husband. They have five children—not one of them with red hair or freckles. One is in heaven. Ada gained experience before becoming a writer and newspaper reporter. The youngest of her parent’s eight children, she was the family tattle tale! Her professional career started when she was age 15, when as a youth leader she wrote ideas for a leadership magazine. She expanded to articles for youth and then to full-length stories in Christian magazines and Sunday school papers. Her first news job was as a correspondent for the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel—from Thompson, Utah, population 98. The author of eight books, she loves inspirational historical suspense. She’s in the middle of her latest plot against her leading characters in the third book in her PEACHES AND DREAMS series, LOVE’S DELICATE BLOSSOM. Plot is all about putting challenges and disaster into the lives of fictional characters, and it sometimes hurts her as well. She retired from her “real job” at The Pueblo Chieftain, but still writes occasional op-ed pieces for newspapers as well as devotions for a teen magazine, articles for Live, blogs and does other freelance writing.  Blog: Ink From An Earthen Vessel  Amazon Author Page

 

MYSTERY/ROMANTIC SUSPENSE/THRILLER/HISTORIC SUSPENSE: crime fiction, probably a body

Tammy Doherty

Tammy Doherty [Grace Awards Board Member, Lead Judge] is the author of several Christian/Inspy novels. Her first two are historical romances with a Western flair, the third is also historical/Western romance with a strong suspense plot. She now writes contemporary romantic suspense. The first of the Mystique of Naultag series, SHE’S MINE, was a 2014 Grace Awards finalist. In addition to being a founding member and lead judge for Grace Awards, Tammy is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. Ms. Doherty lives on a small farm in central New England with her husband and two children. When not writing, she enjoys reading and horseback riding.  Tammy Doherty Website  Amazon Author Page

Peggy Phifer

Author Peggy Blann Phifer, a retired executive assistant after twenty-one years in the Electrical Wholesale Industry, lives in the ‘boonies’ of NW Wisconsin. A late bloomer, Peg didn’t start taking writing seriously until age fifty.Her debut novel, TO SEE THE SUN, a contemporary romantic suspense, released in January 2012. A second novel, SOMEHOW, CHRISTMAS WILL COME, contemporary women’s fiction with a touch of romance, released in November 2014, revised and re-released in late 2015. Her work has also appeared in numerous anthologies, and she is currently working on an historical romantic suspense set during the years of Prohibition with a working title of WHISPERING HOPE. Peg is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. When she’s not writing, Peg enjoys reading, blogging, and sharing her home with her daughter, son-in-law, and a Border Collie mix dog named Rocky. Website: Whispers in Purple  Amazon Author Page

Luana Ehrlich

Luana Ehrlich picked up her first adult spy novel when she was eleven years old. Today, as an award-winning author, minister’s wife, and former missionary, she continues to have a passion for spy thrillers and mystery novels. Luana and her husband have been residents of Norman, Oklahoma for the past twenty-five years, after having lived in the Midwestern part of the U.S. for many years. Along with her husband, she previously served as a missionary in Costa Rica and Venezuela. Luana began writing the Titus Ray Thriller Series when her husband retired from the senior pastor position of a large congregation. Now, she claims she writes from an undisclosed location, trying to avoid the torture of mundane housework, grocery shopping, and a retiree’s golf stories.  However, she occasionally comes out of hiding to visit with her two grandsons or to enjoy a Starbucks caramel macchiato. Occasionally, Luana reports on the experiences of newly converted Christians for Baptist Press, a national news service for Baptists. As a weekly columnist for The Indiana Baptist several years ago, she told the stories of ordinary people who became followers of Christ. Luana is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers.  Luana Ehrlich Website  Amazon Author Page

SPECULATIVE FICTION: science fiction, fantasy, horror, etc.

Tracy Kraus

Tracy Krauss [Grace Awards Board Member, Lead Judge] is a multi-published novelist, playwright, and artist with several award winning and best selling novels, stage plays, devotionals and children’s books in print. Her work strikes a chord with those looking for thought provoking faith based fiction laced with romance, suspense and humor – no sugar added. She holds a B.Ed from the U of S and has lived in many remote and interesting places in Canada’s far north. She and her husband currently reside in beautiful BC where she continues to pursue all of her creative interests. TRACY KRAUSS, Fiction on the edge – without crossing the line Amazon Author Page

Steve Mathisen

Steve Mathisen, his wife, Carol, and their cat Norman, live in Aberdeen, WA, just a short drive from the beautiful Pacific Ocean. He is a writer, copyeditor, and proofreader. He has a degree in geography from the University of Washingechnical documentation. He has served as a judge for several other contests and enjoys reading new works by talented authors. Odd Sock Proofreading and Copyediting

Carole Brown

Carole Brown is a member and active participant of many writing groups, and she also enjoys mentoring beginning writers. An author of ten books, she loves to weave suspense and tough topics into her books, along with a touch of romance and whimsy, and is always on the lookout for outstanding titles and catchy ideas. She and her husband reside in SE Ohio but have ministered and counseled nationally and internationally. Together, they enjoy their grandsons, traveling, gardening, good food, the simple life, and did she mention their grandsons?  Sunnybank Secrets Blog ~ Carol Brown  Amazon Author Page

ACTION-ADVENTURE/WESTERN/ EPIC FICTION: exploits, quest, daring, expansive

Naomi Musch

Naomi is an award-winning author who crafts her stories from the pristine north woods of Wisconsin, where she and her husband Jeff live as epically as God allows near the families of their five adult children. She enjoys roaming around on the farm, snacking out of the garden, relaxing in her vintage camper, and loving on her passel of grandchildren. Naomi is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, the Wisconsin Writers’ Association, and the Lake Superior Writers. Though she has written in a variety of venues, her great love is fiction. THE DEEPEST SIGH is her eighth novel, while its sequel THE SOFTEST BREATH releases in May 2018. Her tenth novel MIST O’ER THE VOYAGEUR will release in October 2018. Naomi loves engaging with others and always discovering kernels of a new story.  Naomi Musch Website  Amazon Author Page

Marcy Dyer

Marcy G. Dyer is a retired Registered Nurse and Amazon best-selling author. Like so many other writers, she began writing at a very young age, but never took herself seriously as a “real” writer until about ten years ago when she began taking courses and learning the craft of writing. She currently has four novels from the Desert Winds Series available: Down & Out, Out for Blood, Blood & Lies. Lies & Alibis. The first book in the Dark Days Series: Contagion is available. The second book in the series, Inquisition will release March 3. Marcy is an alumnus of the Christian Writer’s Guild and a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She hosts a small critique group for ACFW and is involved in other critique groups. She is active in the nonprofit group, Doxa Kids which provides an outreach for children in Kherson, Ukraine, and Nakuru, Kenya. She’s had the pleasure of visiting Ukraine twice and interacting with street children there. God burdened her heart for these forgotten children when she climbed into the sewer tunnels to see where the street children live during the winter.Marcy also hosts a blog, Gimpy Gal, that discusses autoimmune diseases. While many autoimmune diseases aren’t visible, they still cause chronic pain and disability. Marcy G. Dyer ~ Roller Coaster Suspense  Amazon Author Page

Barbara E BrinkBarbara Ellen Brink is an award-winning author who writes action-packed mysteries brimming with suspense and interwoven with a thread of romance. She grew up on a small fruit farm in Washington State, but now lives in the mean “burbs” of Minnesota. In her spare time, she likes to take her motorcycle for a spin, hang out with friends, or go hiking with her husband and their spoiled dog. She is currently working on the 3rd book in her Christian romantic suspense series, SECOND CHANCES, and the 4th book in her DOUBLE BARREL MYSTERIES series.  Barbara Ellen Brink Website   Amazon Author Page

YOUNG ADULT (YA): includes Middle Grade and New Adult (NA)

Moi Ponte Vedre Library

Nike Chillemi [Chair and Founder of Grace Awards, Lead Judge], likes her bad guys really bad and her good guys smarter and better. Nike is the founding board member of the Grace Awards and its Chair, a reader’s choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She has been a judge in the 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016 Carol Awards in the suspense, mystery, and romantic suspense categories; and an Inspy Awards 2010 judge in the Suspense/Thriller/Mystery category. Her four novel Sanctuary Point series (out of print), set in the mid-1940s has finaled, won an award, and garnered critical acclaim. The first novel in her Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels/Dawson Hughes trilogy, HARMFUL INTENT, won in the Grace Awards 2014 Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historical Suspense category. She has written book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and John 3:16 Marketing Network.   Nike N. Chillemi~Mystery & a Merry Heart    Amazon Author Page

Ruth O'Neil

Ruth O’Neil has been a freelance writer for more than 20 years, publishing hundreds of articles in dozens of publications as well as a few books. When she’s not writing or homeschooling, she spends her spare time quilting, reading, scrapbooking, camping, and hiking with the family. Her newest series is devotionals based on classic literature. You can visit her at Real Life is Better Than Fiction blog or at Ruth O’Neil Website  Amazon Author Page

Elaine Cooper

Elaine Marie Cooper is the award-winning author of FIELDS OF THE FATHERLESS (YA Fiction) and BETHANY’S CALENDAR (Non-fiction memoir). Her latest release (SARATOGA LETTERS) was finalist in Historical Romance in both the Selah Awards and Next Generation Indie Book Awards. She penned the three-book DEER RUN SAGA and has been published in numerous magazines and anthologies. She freely admits to being a history geek. She has recently signed a four-book contract with Burnett Young Books. The series is set in Connecticut during the American Revolution.  Elaine Marie Cooper Website  Amazon Author Page 

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And The Grace Awards 2017 Finalists are…

Grace Awards

The Grace Awards 2017 is now into its eight year. This year, the number of reader nominations kept pouring in and we were eager to count them. We had a record number of novels nominated. Works from major publishers, small publisher, and independent author were nominated.

Grace Awards is a reader driven literary awards. We are “the little engine that could” of Christian fiction awards.

According to the rules, every novel had to have been accompanied by at least a 45+ word statement telling why the story was nominated…a sort of mini-review or critique. This year the reasons given were astute and outstanding. There is no doubt that today’s Christian reader is both intelligent and perceptive.

And now…the finalists in six categories are…

WOMEN’S FICTION/GENERAL FICTION: (serious women’s/men’s, societal issues, can have humor and suspense elements)

GRACE IN STRANGE DISGUISE by Christine Dillon (Amazon Digital Services) ~ Physiotherapist Esther Macdonald is living the Australian dream, and it doesn’t surprise her. But at twenty-eight, her world shatters. Everyone assures her God will come through for her, but what happens when he doesn’t? Has she offended God? Is her faith too small?

WHERE THE SKY MEETS THE SAND by Chris Loehmer Kincaid (Ambassador International) ~ The story of Jenny Neumeyer and Ole, a homeless boy she befriends while she and her husband are on vacation in Kenya. As she comes to terms with a secret in her past, two missionaries to Africa discover discover Ole and are determined to lead him home. Along the way, they realize that the boy is not the only one who is lost.

THE AUSTEN ESCAPE by Katherine Reay (Thomas Nelson) ~ Mary Davies finds safety in her ordered and productive life.  When Mary’s estranged childhood friend, Isabel Dwyer offers her a two-week stay in a gorgeous manor house in England, she reluctantly agrees. Then Isabel loses her memory and fully believes she lives in Jane Austen’s Bath.

ROMANCE/HISTORICAL ROMANCE: (primary element is love/courtship/marriage, be it set now or then)

MAGNOLIA STORMS by Janet Ferguson (Southern Sun Press) ~ Maggie Marovich couldn’t save her father or her home from Hurricane Katrina, but she’s dedicated her life to meteorology so she can warn others when the monster storms approach. Except…she works three hours inland and rarely risks returning to her childhood hometown of Ocean Springs, Mississippi. Both her single-parent sister and the ship pilot Maggie once loved refused to leave the Coast, despite Maggie’s requests. Now a hurricane’s headed toward Mississippi, and Maggie’s sister is seriously injured, leaving Maggie little choice but to head south—into the storm.

HOLD THE LIGHT by April McGowan (WhiteFire Publishing) ~ Amber spent her life adapting—first to being abandoned by her birth mother as a toddler, and then to the death of her adoptive father in her teen years. Now she’s moved past all that, loving life as an independent woman: she has a job as an art instructor and the perfect apartment. But when a routine eye appointment reveals she’s losing her sight, life comes to a halt. Even after her blindness counselor, Ethan, befriends her and opens her eyes to new opportunities and the possibility of a deeper relationship.

FINDING JOY by Melanie D. Snitker (Dallionz Media) ~ A horrific accident changed everything for Parker Wilson. The beautiful new employee his mom hires is the last thing he needs and he’ll do whatever it takes to make the girl quit and regain the peace and quiet he prefers. Nothing short of desperation would force Chelsea Blake to work on a local cattle ranch. She may not be cut out for ranch life, but her determination to succeed is stronger than her handsome employer’s efforts at forcing her to leave. Unprepared to discover all they have in common, if they set aside their initial dislike, they might find joy beyond measure.

MYSTERY/ROMANTIC SUSPENSE/THRILLER: (crime fiction, probably a body)

MIDSUMMER MADNESS by Barbara E. Brink (Barbara Ellen Brink) ~ When Blake and Shelby Gunner are hired to find a stolen fishing boat, they never expect it will turn into a murder investigation. But after Jack’s dog, Arthur, discovers a stranger’s body in the water not far from the bed & breakfast, the Gunners are pulled in to solve the case. Discovering the man’s identity and why he was in town leads to a murky past with connections to a number of upstanding Port Scuttlebutt citizens. Can Blake and Shelby stop a killer before someone else is pulled beneath the waves of madness?

ANDER’S REDEMPTION by Mary Vee (CreateSpace) ~ A young man with a brain injury but who can do amazing things with dessert is offered a job as a pastry chef in a prestigious restaurant in a village and it comes with an apartment.The longer he stays the more Brice begins to think something is going on. Can Brice figure out the village’s secret before Christmas?

THE HOUSE ON FOSTER HILL by Jaime Jo Wright (Bethany House Publishers) ~ Kaine Prescott is no stranger to death. When her husband died two years ago, her pleas for further investigation into his suspicious death fell on deaf ears. In desperate need of a fresh start, Kaine purchases an old house sight unseen in her grandfather’s Wisconsin hometown. But one look at the eerie, abandoned house immediately leaves her questioning her rash decision. And when the house’s dark history comes back with a vengeance, Kaine is forced to face the terrifying realization she has nowhere left to hide. 

SPECULATIVE FICTION: (science fiction, fantasy, horror, etc.)

WINTER QUEEN by Erica Marie Hogan (Elk Lake Publishing) ~ She will bring a storm like none they’ve ever seen … and change the world forever. Five years ago, Roderick Kael murdered King Vihaan Sundragon, claiming the throne of Sunkai and all of Nfaros for himself. Five years ago, the Princesses Adlae, Mirae, and Brae were forced to give up everything they’ve ever known. Five years since the Creator of All allowed winter’s snow to fall. But now the wind stirs with a familiar chill. Winter is coming down from the Ice Mountains, brought by the only one who can wield the storm. The Winter Queen herself.

THE REVISIONARY by Kristen Hogrefe (Write Integrity Press) ~ Nineteen-year-old Portia Abernathy plans to earn a Dome seat and rewrite the Codex rules to rescue her exiled brother. Her journey demands answers from the past civilization, but uncovering the truth means breaking the rules she set out to rewrite. This dystopian story opens in Cube 1519, a ghetto where the only use for obsolete cell phones is to throw them like rocks at mongrels. Portia and her father survive like many other citizens, with no electricity or technology and no expectation for a better life.

WHITE WOLF AND THE ASH PRINCESS by Tammy Lash (Amazon Digital Services)  ~ Memory loss prohibits Izzy from remembering her life before age seven when she was injured in a fire. Jonathan Gudwyne rescued her and took Izzy in, but who did she belong to before? Crippling panic keeps Izzy from wandering beyond the stables but Tubs, the young stable boy, encourages Izzy to go beyond the property’s rock wall to a world that promises possible answers, but also great danger. A scorched castle in the woods and a mysterious cellar filled with secrets sets Izzy on a path to the New World, where she will not only have to face her own terror but face the people responsible for her scars.

ACTION-ADVENTURE/WESTERN/EPIC FICTION: (exploits, quest, daring, expansive)

THE HEALING HILLS by Ann H. Gabhart (Revell) ~ Francine Howard has her life all mapped out until the WWII soldier she planned to marry tells her he’s in love with a woman in England. Devastated, Francine seeks a fresh start in the Appalachian Mountains, training to be a nurse midwife for the Frontier Nursing Service. Deeply affected by the horrors he witnessed at war, Ben Locke has never thought further ahead than making it home to Kentucky. His future shrouded in as much mist as his beloved mountains, he’s at a loss when it comes to envisioning what’s next for his life.

THE RELIANT by Dr. Patrick Johnston (Ambassador International) ~ When the dollar collapses, widespread rioting and looting threaten the peace of a family in Zanesville, Ohio. Eight children tragically lose their parents in the chaos. The oldest, 19-year-old lovesick Sophie, is forced to care for her defenseless and hungry siblings in a stretch of woods surrounded by lawless anarchy. Their father has been killed, and their mother and Adam, Sophie’s fiancé, have gone missing. Running out of food and facing threats from encroaching marauders, they are tempted to doubt God’s love. 

AGAINST THE ODDS by V.B. Tenery and David Arp (CBC Publishing) ~ It was the mother of all bad days.The date, September 11,  2012. The place, Benghazi, Libya. While a brave band of warrior’s fight for their lives in the consulate and CIA annex, outside, a Mossad Agent, a missionary, and a Mississippi giant fight a different battle. Caught between terrorist and an enraged Russian arms dealer, they must complete the mission and manage to stay alive until they can escape or tAhe cavalry arrives. Never assume things can’t get worse.

YOUNG ADULT: (including Middle Grade and New Adult)

KNEE-HIGH LIES by Dawn Ford (Splickety Publishing Group) ~ What happens when the lies you tell grow so high you can’t see the truth? To the outside world Avery Denton’s life looks happy, normal even. But it isn’t. Not even close. She believes nothing can make it worse. When her mother skips town with their banker, the small-town gossips focus on her. Jaxson Stewart, Avery’s neighbor and friend, has had a crush on her for years. She makes his heart race, which is dangerous for a boy with a heart condition. Unlike their community, he refuses to hold her mother’s actions against her.

A TRAIL OF CRUMBS by Susie Finkbeiner (Kregel Publications) ~ Spence has been through more in her young life than most folks could handle. Then a devastating tragedy throws the whole family into a tailspin–and signals the beginning of the end of her secure life. Now the Spences are fleeing their Oklahoma wasteland for an unknown life in Depression-era Michigan. Pearl isn’t sure she’ll ever see home or happiness again. Will any trail of crumbs be powerful enough to guide her back to the dependable life she once knew?

MISSION OF A LIFETIME by Priscilla J. Krahn (Ambassador International) ~ A missing airplane . . . Hostile tribes . . . Mysterious kidnappings . . .Responsibility falls upon twenty-one-year-old William Rodriguez when his missionary parents disappear in the hostile jungles of Columbia. Willie knows that he has to go find them, but what will it cost him? When Willie finds himself in the midst of a drug smuggling ring, difficult decisions are thrust upon him. Can he escape his captors before his family is killed? Can he find forgiveness in his heart for the very people who ruined his life or will it only bring back more painful memories? Will he be able to survive the mission of a lifetime?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grace Awards Summer Book Bash 2017 ~ day three

GA Summer Book Bash 3

This summer’s book bash is coming to a close. It’s been a real blast with amazing novels and authors.

 

The Case of the Clobbered CadTHE CASE OF THE CLOBBERED CAD by Debra Marvin (Journey Fiction) ~ Did you spend some long summer days reading favorites like Little House, Anne of Green Gables, or Nancy Drew?  Or, like me, re-reading Black Beauty or The Secret Garden? An author’s favorite stories from his or her youth are apt to make an impression in their work. My new release from Journey Fiction proves that! THE CASE OF THE CLOBBERED CAD celebrates amateur sleuths and evocative, moody settings—in this case, Edinburgh Scotland. Heather Munro’s youthful devotion to The Girl Detective led to a passion for digging around in history. Now pursuing her Master’s Degree in Celtic Studies, Heather must balance exploring Edinburgh with her determination to excel in her all–male classes at the University. Unfortunately on her first night working in the Archives room, she discovers the dead body of a visiting professor, the same would-be lothario she’d hoped never to see again. As clues come to light, it’s clear someone hopes to frame Heather for the murder. Besides her quirky landlady, whom can she trust? How can she clear her name? The police and the American Consul have plenty of suspects, but only two seem to have both motive and opportunity: Heather and the quiet Scottish historian she longs to trust.  Website  Purchase on Amazon

 

Contagion

CONTAGION [Dark Days Book One] by Marcy Dyer (Desert Breeze) ~ Another exciting read to tuck into your beach bag. Weaponized rabies and power hungry politicians – a deadly combination. Zombies roam the earth. Three families stand to lose everything. An obsessed megalomaniac dumps weaponized rabies around the globe creating the zombie apocalypse. As the cataclysm spreads, three families search for safety, or risk becoming part of the bloodbath. Can carpenter Randi Martinez find solace for her tortured soul if she can save her family? Scientist Reginald Barker and his family set out from Silver Penny, Colorado. He fights his way toward the Texas Hill Country to save his family and redeem himself for the chaos he created. Joshua Barker an Austin Homicide Detective is determined to fulfil his responsibility to protect his brother, as he strives to reach his uncle’s home in the Hill Country.  Website  Purchase on Amazon

 

The Deepest Sigh

 THE DEEPEST SIGH [Echoes of the Heart Book One] by Naomi Musch (Desert Breeze) ~ Hot off the press and just released! The timing couldn’t be better to be one of the first to add this historical fiction novel to your summer reading list. Step back onto the home front in 1917 with farmer’s daughter Marilla Eckert as America remembers the 100th anniversary of its entry into WWI — The Great War. It’s a summer of dreams coming true when seventeen-year-old Marilla finally wins the notice of her family’s hired farm hand, Langdon “Lang” Prescott. She’s been in love with him since she was fourteen, oblivious that it’s her older sister Delia who stirs his deepest passions. Nevertheless, when Delia marries her own long-time beau, Lang turns to Marilla instead. Their family celebrates two weddings that year. Not until she has given him everything she has to offer and he is entrenched in the fight overseas, does she finally face the bitter realization of where his devotion truly lies. Pursuing his favor is one thing, but when heartache strikes on every front, and her resolve wears beyond what she can endure, the offer of comfort — and even love — from another is hard to resist. Their marriage is desperate, and the war’s casualty list is growing. Can such hungry hearts find their true homes? With echoes of Jacob, Rachel, and Leah’s story in the Bible and Gone With the Wind, an early reader calls The Deepest Sigh “one of the best romances I’ve read in a long time”.  Website  Purchase on Amazon

 

With Music in Their Hearts

WITH MUSIC IN THEIR HEARTS by Carole Brown (Story and Logic Media Group) ~ A suspense for your summer reading delight. Angry at being rejected for military service, Minister Tyrell Walker accepts the call to serve as a civilian spy within his own country. Across the river from Cincinnati, Ohio, a spy working for a foreign country is stealing secret plans for newly developed ammunition to be used in the war. According to his FBI cousin, this spy favors pink stationery giving strong indications that a woman is involved. He’s instructed to obtain a room in the Rayner Boarding House run by the lovely, spunky red-haired Emma Jaine Rayner. Sparks of jealousy and love fly between them immediately even as they battle suspicions that one or the other is not on the up and up. While Tyrell searches for the murdering spy who reaches even into the boarding home, Emma Jaine struggles with an annoying renter, a worried father (who could be involved in this spy thing), and two younger sisters who are very different but just as strong willed as she is. Will their love survive the danger and personal issues that arise to hinder the path of true love?  Website  Purchase on Amazon

Reader Nominations Begin!!! ~ Grace Awards 2016

Grace Awards

The seventh annual Grace Awards is thrilled to announce that reader voting for Finalists commenced on December 31, 2016 and will end at midnight and ends February 28, 2017.

Wow! Get in on it!!!

The Grace Awards is reader driven. That means in the first round readers vote for their favorite novels and chose “Finalists” in five literary categories.

WHO CAN VOTE FOR NOVELS:

Individuals (not organizations). Readers who maintain a networking page (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, Linkedin, Ning sites, a blog, etc.) created before November 1, 2016. We check each link to verify there’s a real person there.

Books, Reading

Readers can only vote in all six (6) categories, but only for ONE novel in each category.

Authors are also readers and can vote, but not for their own novel(s). Please, please DON’T vote against yourself, simply vote in the OTHER genre categories for novels you deem worthy.

Editors, publishers, agents, cover artists can vote, but not for a book they authored or co-authored, entered into a verbal or written agreement for, or received compensation for. 

Board members and judges can vote, but not for their own novel(s).

TYPES OF NOVELS READERS MAY CONSIDER: Traditional Christian, Inspirational, realistic and/or gritty Christian and edgy Christian, stories from a Christian worldview, redemptive themed, biblical, Messianic, catholic, faith-based, Christian and/or Messianic mystical themes, values imbued, grace and forgiveness oriented, inspirational marriage and family friendly, depicting Christian lifestyle (can be struggling with it), spiritually and emotionally healing fiction…of 55 thousand words or more. At this time we do not have a category for anthologies.

Books, a stack

CRITERIA FOR NOVELS:

Original novels presenting a Christian worldview written in English, published in hard cover, trade paperback, or in Ebook format.

Traditional publishers, Small press, Indie publishers, self-published works. To us, Pbooks and Ebooks all compete on the same level playing field.

The novel must have been released between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2016.

Most of all, the novel must reach the highest of literary standards and add something of value to Christian, inspirational, faith and values based fiction, and to the world at large.

BOOK CATEGORIES:

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction  –  women’s issues and/or men’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Contemporary Romance/Historic Romance — the primary element is love/marriage, then or now

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller — crime fiction, there’s probably a body

Speculative — sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc

Action/Adventure/Western/Epic Fiction — exploits, quest, daring, expansive

Young Adult (YA) — includes middle grade, young adult, and new adult (NA)

**Note: submit Urban Fiction into the category where it best fits (ie, Women’s Fiction, Young Adult, etc.)

Books, Reading 5

READER VOTING SUGGESTIONS:

1. Was the novel well written? Did the author use language correctly? Did it make sense?

2. Was the plotline logical? Did any plot turns surprise you? In a good way, as in what a surprise but this really works — or in a bad way, as in “Yikes” this doesn’t work at all?

3. Did the characters feel like living people? Could you identify with the characters and their situations in the novel? Were the scenes plausible?

4. How about pacing? Did you ever get bored?

5. Was the novel true to its setting: time, place?

6. Was the novel entertaining? Did it uplift, send you on an emotional roller coaster, have you on the edge of your seat, tickle your funny bone (depending on the category)?

7. Did the novel engage your Christian walk in a meaningful way? Did it depict Christian life in a plausible manner (in some genres, this would be symbolic)?  Do you think the work adds something of literary value?

HOW TO NOMINATE FINALIST(S):

  • Give title and author, category, and tell us 40+ words why you like the book so much.
  • Nominate in one category or all, only one novel per category, only one nomination per novel.
  • Give a link to your social networking site, web site, or blog. Must have been created before November 1, 2016.
  • Email to:  graceawards@yahoo.com

USE A FORMAT SOMETHING LIKE THIS…(y0u can copy what is in blue and email it with entry or entries.

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction: Name of novel and author. In 40+ words, why did you like the book.

Contemporary Romance/Historical Romance: Name of novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historical Suspense: Name of novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Speculative Fiction — sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc: Name of the novel and author. In 40+words, why you like the book.

Action-Adventure/Western/Historic Epic Fiction: Name of the novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Young Audlt (YA): Name of the novel. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

 

After you chose in which category/ies you want to nominate a novel, copy and answer the simple questions and email to graceawards@yahoo.com

HAPPY NEW YEAR WITH LOTS OF GREAT READING!!!

New Year

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Grace Filled Christmas Book Bash 2016 ~ Day 3

GA Xmas Book Bash 2

 

 

Authors who have won or finaled in the Grace Awards, who have been judges, who are active members of the Grace Awards Face Book Group, or who have in other ways supported the Grace Awards are happy to show their Christmas spirit with this showcase of their novels at this joyous time of year.

 

neighbors NEIGHBORS by Tracy Krauss

NEIGHBOURS is back! This collection contains all nine volumes of the first series with a fresh new look for this holiday season. Likened to popular TV show ‘Friends’, it’s contemporary Christian romance ‘cowboy’ style. Lester Tibbett, a former rodeo rider from Southern Alberta, moves to the city for work – and to look out for his wilful teenage sister. In the process, he meets a cast of quirky characters, most living right in his own apartment building. With romance, intrigue, humour and a touch of the unexpected, the twists and turns just keep coming as the first ‘season’ of NEIGHBOURS unfolds, culminating in a Christmas party that brings the entire cast together for the first time. PLUS… there are bonus recipes in the back! It’s a Christmas ‘package deal’ from award winning author Tracy Krauss – fiction on the edge without crossing the line –

NEIGHBORS on Amazon

Tracy Krauss’ Website

shes-mine SHE’S MINE by Tammy Doherty

Perfect for the Romantic Suspense lover on your shopping list. Or perhaps you! Gift shopping, holiday decorating and baking, traffic, more traffic – it’s all so stressful. Sit back and relax. You can give SHE’S MINE to those on your gift list. Better yet, grab a warm cup of your favorite beverage, curl up on the sofa (by the fireplace if you can!) and read a novel that author B.J. Robinson describes as “A wonderful Christian romance with mystery and suspense to make it more interesting.” Author Dora Heirs calls it “A Palm Slicker!” Caitlin Harrington dreams of a quiet life teaching math at her hometown middle school. Except someone is leaving ominous notes on her door.  It could be her ex-boyfriend or someone else who doesn’t want her back in town. Sean Taggart thinks Caitlin is beautiful…and possibly crazy. When he finds out the truth, Sean wants to help. Can he save Caitlin before the stalker turns to murder? 5★ Amazon Review: “ Wow. Talk about a twist! I was thoroughly enthralled by the story and never saw the twist coming! This is a romance/mystery that will have you biting your nails! Wonderful writing, fully-developed character and plot!

SHE’S MINE on Amazon

Tammy Doherty’s Blog

much-ado-about-murder MUCH ADO ABOUT MURDER by Barbara E. Brink

Leaves and snow are falling in Port Scuttlebutt and Blake and Shelby Gunner are close to opening the doors of Double Barrel Investigations. But before construction is complete on their new offices, a local woman’s body is discovered buried on her ex-husband’s property, and the Gunners are pulled into yet another murder mystery. MUCH ADO ABOUT MURDER is the perfect book to enjoy on a crisp, winter night, tucked up into your easy chair with a cup of hot cocoa. Or get into the Christmas spirit and share the joy by gifting a copy to a friend or family member who also loves to read. What more could anyone ask for over the holidays than murder, romance, and small town drama entwined in a tale of suspense that will keep you guessing till the end? You might want to keep a nightlight on and your sense of humor close at hand.

MUCH ADO ABOUT MURDER on Amazon

Barbara E. Brink’s Website

 

Product DetailsCOME EAT AT MY TABLE by Ruth O’Neil

COME EAT AT MY TABLE begins and ends with Christmas. One year. 365 days. In that length of time a life can change. And Karin’s life, and the lives of her family members, change more than any of them ever thought possible. Twenty years have passed since Karin ran away from home. In that time she met and married Rob and had two beautiful daughters. She can either keep the demons of her past suppressed or she can face them and forgive. But forgiving is hard. Everyone will see a little bit of themselves while reading COME EAT AT MY TABLE. the true-to-life story makes it a great gift for all the readers on your list this Christmas.

COME EAT AT MY TABLE on Amazon

Ruth O’Neil’s Website

 

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Grace Filled Christmas Book Bash 2016 ~ Day Two

GA Xmas Book Bash 3

Authors who have won or finaled in the Grace Awards, who have been judges, who are active members of the Grace Awards Face Book Group, or who have in other ways supported the Grace Awards are happy to show their Christmas spirit with this showcase of their novels at this joyous time of year.

 

my-sisters-keeper MY SISTER’S KEEPER by Dalyn Woods

Christmas will never be the same when an evening at the ballet ends in a kidnapping. In order to rescue her sister, Megan must work with her nemesis, Nate, as they search from Northeast Florida to Key West in a race against time. My Sister’s Keeper is the debut novel of author Dalyn Woods. It is Christian Romantic Suspense written in the style of Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense line.

MY SISTER’S KEEPER on Amazon

Dalyn Wood’s Facebook Page a/k/a Lyn Wood Rix  http://bit.ly/2gZAb0y

miranda-warning MIRANDA WARNING by Heather Day Gilbert

Share an Appalachian Christmas with amateur sleuth Tess Spencer and her beloved in-laws who live next door. When Tess stumbles onto a decades-old unsolved murder, will she be able to stop the killer before the New Year rings in a new death? Fans of Terri Blackstock and Dani Pettrey will enjoy this bestselling first-in-series mystery.

MIRANDA WARNING on Amazon

Heather Day Glibert’s Website

always ALWAYS WITH YOU by Elaine Stock

Imagine once looking forward to the Christmas holiday season with your new husband. You dream of future years filled with tree decorating, cookie baking, gift giving, and carol singing. Your heart flutters with joy when you think about the smiles on your children’s faces! You meet your Prince Charming who rescues you from danger, fall in love, and marry. And you’re blessed with a baby on the way. You get exactly what you wished for. Now, the truth comes out about your husband and the community you live with. You’re faced with two choices: Staying could endanger your child. Leaving could cost your life. ALWAYS WITH YOU, a novel of finding faith in a God who loves you for always … a Father who wants you and your children to celebrate an eternity of Christmases. A Kindle best-seller.

ALWAYS WITH YOU on Amazon

Elaine Stock’s Website

baptized BAPTIZED  by Suzanne D. Williams

Curl up beneath the Christmas lights in your favorite chair and lose yourself for a while in a beautiful story. One reader said, “The love of God for each and every one shone through,” and another, “Unique and unforgettable.” Penn Saunders, ex-drug addict and pastor’s son, meets Morgan Gant, a girl troubled by her recent past, in the most normal way, as neighbors. Penn, after a nameless girl he’d partied with died in his bed, got clean and embraced God again. He feels the call of the ministry on his life, but has to take the first step in living on his own. Morgan Gant thought she left her old life behind by moving hundreds of miles away. She’s starting over, building a successful online cosmetics business, and renting her own apartment. No one here will know what she did for a living, or what happened to her. Yet, when their feelings for each other grow, what they haven’t said, who he is as a Christian, clashes with the secret of what she’s survived, and their new relationship threatens to fall apart. Until God’s ever-present grace touches her heart. In this time of reflection, this story of redemption will tug at your heartstrings and remind you of the purpose of the holiday.

BAPTIZED on Amazon

Suzanne D. Williams’ Website

trevelyancoverart72dpi TREYVELYN by Naomi Musch

“It’s my new favorite book!” That’s what one reader says about Trevelyan – A Tale of Beauty and The Beast, a fantasy vacation for the fairytale lover on your Christmas list. In a war long ago, the once great kingdom of Trevelyan was left in death and ruins by a monster lord and his faerie wife. Stories of that time have grown, mysteries hidden beyond the borders of an endless winter. Only the fairies of Evensong know the truth of those times. Until hope comes. Now it’s up to Belle, her swashbuckling brothers, two fearless suitors, and a pair of Elvin princes to discover the real malevolence still determined to destroy them all. Can a true king rule in Trevelyan again?

Product DetailsWATERS OF SEPARATION by Carol McClain

Christmas. It’s the time for gifts–and gifts with chocolate abound. But do you know where your chocolate comes from? December is cacao planting season in the Côte d’Ivoire. It’s also the time that Christ’s redemption of mankind was set into motion. Why not gift the woman in your life with the book that marries these two concepts–Waters of Separation. She will love you for it. Africa’s secrets resurrect the despair physician assistant Anna Haas buried in America. Her pregnancy and the discovery of boys bound by slavery in the cacao sector of the Côte d’Ivoire revive her childhood guilt. Her mother’s suicide claimed the lives of the two small sisters Anna had vowed to protect. Her failure to save them was unforgiveable. It will not happen with these boys. Her interference prompts a corrupt government to threaten the thriving mission and the lives of Anna and her friends. Her action also threaten her marriage. However, doing nothing will destroy her. The story weaves from past to present and across two continents as Anna fights for love, faith and redemption.

WATERS OF SEPARATION on Amazon  http://ow.ly/Qe2d305VAQ9

Carol McClain’s Website  http://carol-mmclain.blogspot.com

Grace Awards 2015 Winners ~ in Faith Based Fiction

GraceAwards Badge 2015px

The Grace Awards, a reader driven awards and the most democratic awards in Christian fiction, now in its sixth year, is very proud to announce its 2015 WINNERS. This year we had an array of widely diverse judges (multi-published authors, traditionally published ones, indie authors, and avid readers). Our judges commented on how pleased they were with the high quality of the finalists chosen by readers this year. Several judging teams ‘complained’ they had trouble picking a winner because all three stories nominated were so good. This only serves to justify the faith we have in our Christian readers who nominate the finalists. That’s what the Grace Awards is all about.

We’ve tried to use, if you will, a separation of powers in choosing our winners. Readers nominated (via email) the finalists in six categories. After the nominations were counted, finaling titles were given to our judging teams. From that point on there was no contact between the judging teams and the Chair of the Board, except for administrative issues. The teams independently picked winners. Each step in the process was removed and separated from the next step, to insure impartiality.

We are thrilled that our winners showcase self-published works as well as titles from  publishing houses, ebooks as well as paperbacks. Our aim is to be an egalitarian award, and we believe we’ve accomplished this.

The winners are…

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction: serious women’s or men’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Annabelle's Ruth

ANNABELLE’S RUTH by Betty Thomason Owens (Amazon Digital Services)

In ANNABELLE’S RUTH the author triumphs over the challenge of making a well-loved bible story fresh, and relevant to the era of 1950s Tennessee.  Expect to be transported to the small, rural town where Annabelle and her daughter-in-law, Ruth, must find a way to begin again after their husbands’ tragic deaths. Readers familiar with the book of Ruth will be left with a deeper appreciation of God’s provenance.

 

Romance/Historical Romance: primary element is love/courtship/marriage, be it set now or then

Bridge of Faith

BRIDGE OF FAITH by Catherine West (Amazon Digital Services)

BRIDGE OF FAITH gives an inside look at American family life. It’s not perfect. And all the frayed ends don’t really get tied up in the end. These people are still flawed, but they love each other and aren’t about to quit believing. I wondered, more than once, Julia Connelly would ever wake up and realize what a gift she’d been given—a second chance at love. The reality is, we’re often filled with doubt and anxiety. We’re afraid to try again, because we know the pain of making a mistake. The judges thoroughly enjoyed the characters in this book. The author did a nice job of bringing them to life and giving them real and believable emotions. Their struggles were so real at times, we almost wanted to stop and pray for them. Yes, the judges supposed the idea of a rich, hunky lead returning to save our heroine from a lonely forever is a tad clichéd, but who cares? It was great fun. The only negative we found in Bridge of Faith, was our inability to put it down. 

 

Trial By Twelve

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historical Suspense: crime fiction, there’s probably a body

TRIAL BY TWELVE by Heather Day Gilbert (WoodHaven Press)

This novel grabs the reader’s attention from the start. The writing is crisp with a fresh and unique author voice. The pacing moves along fast enough to keep the reader hooked but not so quickly as to create confusion. In addition to the mystery/suspense plot, the reader gets a delightful look into the lives of Tess, her family, and friends. Written in first person, the point of view stays steadfast throughout the story except for the letters sprinkled throughout the book which give insight into the killer’s psyche. They do not, however, give away too much and spoil the whodunit reveal. Ms. Gilbert makes good use of red herrings, both with characters and even setting. Though it is obvious that this novel is a sequel, the reader is able to follow character relationships easily. TRIAL BY TWELVE  is a novel all three Grace Awards judges can recommend.

 

Storming

Speculative Fiction: science fiction, horror, fantasy, etc.

STORMING by K.M. Weiland (PenForASword Publishing)

STORMING was a pleasure to read. It started with a bang and kept on delivering. It is a highly inventive story with just the right balance of unpredictability and universal appeal. The characters are especially well rounded, their humanity believable as each one’s troubled past was gradually revealed. The 1920s setting seemed well researched; the dialogue and colloquialisms were in keeping with the era, yet a natural feel was maintained throughout. ‘Steampunk’ elements added another dynamic to an already superbly built world, while masterful descriptions never weighed the story down. This book has it all: complex relationships, excellent pacing, wonderfully timed resolutions, and some surprising twists. It was not overtly Christian, but there were definitely elements of faith and forgiveness. It is highly recommended for anyone – readers looking for something different AND readers looking for something relatable. It truly has universal appeal.

 

Saving Eric

Action Adventure/Western/Historic Epic Fiction: exploits, quest, expansive

SAVING ERIC by Joan Deneve (Amazon Digital Services)

Joan Deneve weaves a beautiful story of redemption and forgiveness in this Grace Awards winner. SAVING ERIC  combines intrigue and espionage into a story of learning to forgive and accept mercy. The characters, even the secondary, are believable, engaging, and compelling. Eric, who believes failure is not an option in his life, finds himself on the wrong side of a traitor in the midst of a failed mission. Critically injured, he’s flown to a remote hospital by his friend and helicopter pilot, Toby. Despite a strained relationship between Eric and his father, the scenes between them provide insight into Eric’s character. The growth of their relationship is realistic and touching. The spiritual aspect of Saving Eric felt credible. It portrays the power of redemption and God’s love.

 

To Get To You

Young Adult: includes YA, NA, and middle grade

TO GET TO YOU by Joanne Bischoff (Mason Jar Books)

JoAnne Bischof has brought a new dynamic to young adult fiction. Long after reading the last page of her novel TO GET TO YOU, the judges found ourselves thinking about her unique characters. This story of one young man’s quest to do well and to climb out of a lifestyle of hopelessness, to reacquaint himself with his father, and to help his girlfriend’s family will capture the attention of young adults—and others. So, I encourage you to take a road trip with Riley Kane. You’ll be glad you went along for the ride

 

Grace Awards

 

 

 

Announcing Grace Awards 2015 Judges

Website

Grace Awards

The Grace Awards is now going into its sixth year, having been extremely well received during the last five years. This year we have a line up of stellar judges for our six fiction categories.

WOMEN’S FICTION/GENERAL FICTION: serious women’s and men’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Cr2012

Naomi Musch [Grace Awards Board Member, Lead Judge] loves a great story, whether historical or contemporary. She writes from the pristine north woods of Wisconsin, where lives with her husband and family as epically as God allows. She has worked as an editor, as a staff writer for an EPA award-winning Christian newspaper, and has published dozens of magazine and internet articles for the encouragement of homeschooling families and young writers. Naomi currently serves on the board of directors of the Wisconsin Writers’ Association. She loves engaging with others and always discovering kernels of a new story. She is available for speaking and book groups. Her eighth novel, The Love Coward released from Desert Breeze Publishing in 2015. Website,  FB: Naomi Musch – Author Twitter: NMusch

debra-e-marvin

Debra E. Marvin is a member of ACFW, Sisters in Crime, and serves on the board of Bridges Ministry in Seneca Falls, NY. She’s one of the founders of Inkwell Inspirations Blog. In 2015, she released her first two novellas, “Alarmingly Charming” in Austen in Austen Vol 1 from WhiteFire Publishing, and “Desert Duet” from Forget Me Not Romances. Her unpublished successes included contest finals in The Fab Five, The Maggie Awards, the TARA, Great Expectations, Heart of the Rockies, twice in the Daphne DuMaurier, and the overall winner of the Phoenix Rattler. Debra works as a program assistant at Cornell University in upstate NY, and enjoys time with family and grandchildren, obsessively buying fabric, watching British programming and traveling with her childhood friends. Twitter, Facebook, Website, Pinterest, blogging at Inkwell Inspirations

Onisha Ellis

Onisha Ellis fell in love with reading in the second grade. Her favorite books were biographies written about the childhood of famous leaders and explorers. She believes that is why she prefers to read character driven novels and is especially excited to be judging women’s fiction/general fiction. When she is not reading she is a blogger for Old Things R New.

ROMANCE/HISTORICAL ROMANCE: primary element is love/courtship/marriage, be it set now or then

Deborah KinnardDeborah Kinnard [Grace Awards Board Member, Lead Judge] started writing at age ten, hacked off because “Bonanza” lacked a ten year old girl with her own pony. From adventures on the Ponderosa, she moved to teenage angsty love stories and dreadful poetry. After a career that embraced feeding basketball players breakfast, coping with el-ed majors and various ERs different from the ones on TV, she married the man of her dreams and raised two active girls amongst the books. She sold her first novel, POWERLINE, in 2002 and fifteen others since. Her most recent published series is with Desert Breeze Publishing, called “Seasons of Destiny.” It includes SEASONS IN THE MIST (now available), and the upcoming SEASONS OF RECKONING and SEASONS OF HOPE. Indie-published titles include the “City Lights” series, which tell tales of pop music stars and the people they love. Deb enjoys beadwork, travel, and music. She sings with a medieval/renaissance singing group, Court and Country. While traveling, she loves to people-watch. So if you meet a short-round woman with an acquisitive light in her eye…

Betty Thomason Owens

Betty Thomason Owens writes romantic comedy, historical fiction, and fantasy-adventure. She has contributed hundreds of articles and interviews to various blogs around the Internet and is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), where she leads a critique group. She’s a mentor, assisting other writers, and a co-founder of a blog dedicated to inspiring writers.Her writing credits include Annabelle’s Ruth, Book 1, Kinsman Redeemer Series (2015), a 20’s era romance, Amelia’s Legacy, Book 1, Legacy Series (2014), both through Write Integrity Press. Carlotta’s Legacy, Book 2 of the Legacy Series is due in the Spring of 2016. She writes contemporary stories as a co-author of A Dozen Apologies and its sequels, The Love Boat Bachelor and Unlikely Merger, (2015). She has two fantasy-adventure novels, The Lady of the Haven and A Gathering of Eagles, in a second edition published by Sign of the Whale BooksTM, an imprint of Olivia Kimbrell PressTM. Webstie. Amazon Author Page.

Joy-DeKokJoy DeKok started to dream about being a writer when she was four years old. When her mom read to her at night, she fell asleep excited for the day she’d put her own words on the pages. She is an avid reader and finds that immersing herself in books, she becomes a better writer. When asked which is more important to her, she is quick to declare, “Both. In my life, the two are essential and intertwined.” When Joy came to faith in Christ when she was fifteen, the first thing she did was to write about her experience in poetry. Books by her include Under His Wings (devotional), 2 novels; Rain Dance (contemporary Christian fiction) and Between the Lies (Suspense), and three kids books: It Is Good, Room For Bandit, and Raccoon Tales. Joy and her husband live on thirty-five acres of wildflower fields and woods. Besides reading and writing, Joy enjoys taking her dogs, Sophie and Tucker, for long John Deere Gator rides. She an amateur photographer and loves the way God whispers His love for her in His creation. Website.

MYSTERY/ROMANTIC SUSPENSE/THRILLER/HISTORIC SUSPENSE: crime fiction, probably a body

Tammy Doherty

Tammy Doherty [Grace Awards Board Member and Lead Judge] is the author of several Christian/Inspy novels, two of which have been on Amazon’s best-selling list. Her first three novels are historical romance with a touch of suspense; the fourth book, SHE’S MINE, is a contemporary romantic suspense set in a small town in central Massachusetts. In addition to being a founding member and lead judge for Grace Awards, she is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers. Ms. Doherty lives on a small farm in central MA with her husband and two children, where they grow and sell perennial plants.

Peggy Phifer

Peggy Blann Phifer retired from an executive assistant position after twenty-one years in the Electrical Wholesale industry in Las Vegas, Nevada. She came to writing later in life when a prayer she wrote appeared in 2000, in a two-volume Guideposts Book compilation, ‘Prayers for Every Need.’ Her indie-published debut novel, ‘To See the Sun,’ released in January 2012. Since then, her writing has appeared in a number of anthology series’ in 2013-15, and she is now writing a series of her own called ‘Sweetwater River.’ Peg’s second novel, ‘Somehow, Christmas Will Come,’ originally released in November 2014, has been redesigned and was re-released in December 2015.Widowed in October 2012, Peg now makes her home in NW Wisconsin near her three children, six grandchildren, eleven great-grandchildren. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), loves writing, reading, crochet, needlepoint, and coloring in an adult coloring book of Mandala patterns. Follow her blog “Whispers in Purple,” and on Facebook, Twitter @pegphifer, and Pinterest.

Carol McClain

Diverse. If one word can describe Carol McClain, it’s diverse and had been long before diversity became such a ‘PC’ buzz word. She’s a novelist, essayist, and erstwhile poet (Be glad it’s erstwhile and no longer current). She hales from northern New York—so far north, she’s almost Canadian. Eh? She plays the bassoon, creates stained glass, cross-country skis, and is a former marathoner and high ropes instructor. For more than thirty years, she taught English, and she now teaches Bible studies, and edits for fun. In addition to this, she has served on the North Country Habitat for Humanity board for over ten years. In that capacity, she’s held every position except those having to do with money. She may be able to tell you the definitions sesquipedalian, but simple addition baffles her. She is course coordinator for ACFW. And of course, she writes. She’s completed four novels, with DWF: Divorced White Female being her debut.

SPECULATIVE FICTION: science fiction, fantasy, horror, etc.

Tracy Krauss

Tracy Krauss [Grace Awards Board Member and Lead Judge] is a multi-published novelist, playwright, and artist with several award winning and Amazon best selling novels, novellas, stage plays, and devotionals in print as well as one illustrated children’s book. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from the U of Sask. and teaches secondary school Art, English and Drama. She and her husband, an ordained pastor, have four grown children, one granddaughter, and have lived in many remote and interesting places in Canada’s far north. They currently reside in Tumbler Ridge, B.C. where Tracy continues to teach, direct, write and pursue all of her creative interests. Author Website.

cuffe sisters

Sadie & SophieCuffe have written six novels and three novellas, and have a new cozy mystery coming out from Five Star Publishing in January 2017. In addition to freelance writing, the Cuffe sisters run a small farm in downeast Maine’s Unorganized Territory. They bring Jane-of-all-trades life experiences to their work, and believe God gave them this background to write squarely to the heart of real women who don’t always wear a size two, and who prefer boots and flannel to high heels and the little black dress. They believe with God anything is possible; and that some of the best stories aren’t hatched in creative writing class, they’re composed on the seat of a tractor. Facebook author page. Their blog/books.

Karin Kaufman

Karin Kaufman writes mysteries, thrillers, and children’s books. Although her mysteries and thrillers are written from a Christian perspective, they don’t downplay the evil we confront in this world—or the isolation Christians sometimes feel in what is a largely secular culture. But she rejects the notion that “edgy” books should be dark or oppressive. Because there is also goodness in this world—love, friendship, laughter, faithful dogs, piping hot cups of coffee—and it’s every bit as real as the evil. The Witch Tree, the first in her Anna Denning mystery series, was a finalist for a 2011 Grace Award. Karin lives near the foothills of the Colorado Rocky Mountains with Dakota Grace, her crazy but lovable rez rescue dog. You can find Karin on her Facebook author page, at http://www.facebook.com/authorkarinkaufman, or her website.

ACTION-ADVENTURE/WESTERN/ EPIC FICTION: exploits, quest, daring, expansive

Moi 3

Like so many writers, Nike Chillemi [Chair and Founder of Grace Awards, Lead Judge] started at a very young age. Her first major work was a Crayola, fully illustrated book she penned as a little girl (colored might be more accurate) about her then off-the-chart love of horses. Today, you might call her a crime fictionista. Her passion is crime fiction. She likes her bad guys really bad and her good guys smarter and better. Nike is the founding board member of the Grace Awards and is its Chair, a reader’s choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She has been a judge in the 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014 Carol Awards in the suspense, mystery, and romantic suspense categories; and an Inspy Awards 2010 judge in the Suspense/Thriller/Mystery category. Her four novel Sanctuary Point series (out of print), set in the mid-1940s has finaled, won an award, and garnered critical acclaim. The first novel in her Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels/Dawson Hughes trilogy, HARMFUL INTENT, won in the Grace Awards 2014 Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historical Suspense category. She has written book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and John 3:16 Marketing Network. BlogFB profile.Get her novels at her Amazon author page.

Barbara E Brink

Barbara Ellen Brink is a multi-published author of mystery, suspense, and young adult novels. Apart from writing, she is a wife, mother, and dog walker. She grew up on a small farm in Washington State, but now lives in the mean “burbs” of Minnesota with her husband and their dog, Willow. In her spare time – when she’s not reading – she likes to ride motorcycles, visit local wineries, and catch up on the latest movies. She is the author of the women’s fiction mystery series, The Fredrickson Winery Novels; a humorous young adult series, The Amish Bloodsuckers Trilogy; and Inspirational suspense novels, Running Home and Alias Raven Black. Her speculative/thriller, Split Sense, won the 2011 Grace Award. She is currently working on the second book in her newest series, Double Barrel Mysteries. Author Website/Blog.

Marcy Dyer 2

Marcy G. Dyer is a Registered Nurse and suspense author. Like so many other writers, she began writing at a very young age, but never took herself seriously as a “real” writer until about ten years ago when she began taking courses and learning the craft of writing.She currently has four novels from the Desert Winds Series available: Down & Out, Out for Blood, Blood & Lies. Lies & Alibis and is working on Marcy Dyer two new series: The Horde and The Lucky Series.Marcy has served as a judge for the Grace Awards, ACFW Genesis Contest, ACFW First Impressions Contest, ACFW Carol Awards, and the Olympia Contest.

YOUNG ADULT (YA): includes Middle Grade and New Adult (NA)

Fay Lamb

Fay Lamb [Lead Judge] is an editor, writing coach, and author, whose emotionally charged stories remind the reader that God is always in the details. Fay has contracted two series. Stalking Willow and Better than Revenge, Books 1 and 2 in the Amazing Grace romantic suspense series are currently available for purchase. Charisse and Libby the first two novels in her The Ties That Bind contemporary romance series have been released. Fay has also collaborated on two Christmas novella projects: The Christmas Three Treasure Hunt, and A Ruby Christmas, and the Write Integrity Press romance novella series, which includes A Dozen Apologies, The Love Boat Bachelor, and Unlikely Merger. Her adventurous spirit has taken her into the realm of non-fiction with The Art of Characterization: How to Use the Elements of Storytelling to Connect Readers to an Unforgettable Cast. Future releases from Fay are: Everybody’s Broken and Frozen Notes, Books 3 and 4 of Amazing Grace and Hope and Delilah, Books 3 and 4 from The Ties that Bind.Fay loves to meet readers, and you can find her on her personal Facebook page, her Facebook Author page, and at The Tactical Editor on Facebook. She’s also active on Twitter. Then there are her blogs: On the Ledge, Inner Source, and the Tactical Editor. And, yes, there’s one more: Goodreads. Anyone interested in learning more about Fay’s freelance editing and her coaching should contact her at fay@faylamb.com.

Ruth O'Neil 1

Ruth O’Neil was born and raised in upstate New York and attended Houghton College. She has been a freelance writer/editor for more than twenty years. She has published hundreds of articles in dozens of publications as well as publishing a few books. She has spent the last few years working in publishing, working closely with writers editing their books and preparing them for print. Teaching Writer’s Forums to help want-to-be authors break into print with either freelancing or book publishing has been one of her passions. A couple of years ago she began teaching writing classes at a local homeschool co-op. Here she now teaches younger writers to develop their own freelancing career, write their own novel, or create their own picture book. Teaching the next generation of writers is probably the most fun she’s ever had! You can visit her on her blog, or on her website.

Rebekah LynRebekah Lyn writes character-driven novels, which she hopes will engulf the reader in a great story and leave them stronger in their faith. She currently has six novels published and is working on number seven. Her novel, Jessie, won the Grace Award for YA Fiction in 2015 as well as the Patrick D Smith Literary Award, and was listed as one of Shelf Unbound’s Notable Books of 2014. An early love of history, research and journaling led naturally to a passion for writing. Even at an early age, she immersed herself into her favorite hobbies of reading, writing and dreaming. A God-given talent of insight and skill, and a big dose of His courage, led her into a desire to live her dream.

THE GRACE AWARDS BOARD WILL ANNOUNCE WINNERS IN ALL SIX CATEGORIES ON MAY, 31st.

Christian Authors:Write a Novel in 2015?~ You’re eligible to be nominated for a Grace Award

Grace Awards

LET YOUR READERS KNOW!!!

If you don’t tell them, how will they know?

The Grace Awards prohibits Christian authors from “waging a campaign.” Simply telling your readers you novel is eligible is not waging a campaign. It’s providing information.

WHO CAN VOTE FOR NOVELS:

Individuals (not organizations). Readers who maintain a networking page (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, Linkedin, Ning sites, a blog, etc.) created before November 1, 2015. We check each link to verify there’s a real person there.

Books, Reading

  1. Readers can only vote for ONE novel in each category.
  2. Readers can only ONCE for a novel.
  3. If a novel is submitted in an incorrect category, Grace Awards will move it to the correct category rather than discount the nomination.

Authors are also readers and can vote, but not for their own novel(s). DON’T vote against yourself, simply vote in the other genre categories for novels you deem worthy.

Editors, publishers, agents can vote, but not for a book they authored or co-authored. 

Board members and judges can vote, but not for their own novel(s).

TYPES OF NOVELS READERS MAY CONSIDER: Traditional Christian, Inspirational, realistic and/or gritty Christian and edgy Christian, stories from a Christian worldview, redemptive themed, biblical, Messianic, catholic, faith-based, Christian and/or Messianic mystical themes, values imbued, grace and forgiveness oriented, marriage and family friendly, depicting Christian lifestyle (can be struggling with it), spiritually and emotionally healing fiction…of 55 thousand words or more. At this time we do not have a category for anthologies.

Books, a stack

CRITERIA FOR NOVELS:

Original novels presenting a Christian worldview written in English, published in hard cover, trade paperback, or in Ebook format.

Traditional publishers, Small press, Indie publishers, self-published works. To us, Pbooks and Ebooks all compete on the same level playing field.

The novel must have been released between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015.

Most of all, the novel must reach the highest of literary standards and add something of value to Christian, inspirational, faith and values based fiction, and to the world at large.

BOOK CATEGORIES:

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction  –  women’s issues and/or men’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Contemporary Romance/Historic Romance — the primary element is love/marriage, then or now

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historic Suspense — crime fiction, there’s probably a body

Speculative — sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc

Action/Adventure/Western/Epic Fiction — exploits, quest, daring, expansive

Young Adult (YA) — includes Middle Grade and New Adult (NA)

**Note: submit Urban Fiction into the category where it best fits (ie, Women’s Fiction, Young Adult, etc.)

Books, Reading 5

READER VOTING SUGGESTIONS:

1. Was the novel well written? Did the author use language correctly? Did it make sense?

2. Was the plotline logical? Did any plot turns surprise you? In a good way, as in what a surprise but this really works — or in a bad way, as in “Yikes” this doesn’t work at all?

3. Did the characters feel like living people? Could you identify with the characters and their situations in the novel? Were the scenes plausible?

4. How about pacing? Did you ever get bored?

5. Was the novel true to its setting: time, place?

6. Was the novel entertaining? Did it uplift, send you on an emotional roller coaster, have you on the edge of your seat, tickle your funny bone (depending on the category)?

8. Did the novel engage your Christian walk in a meaningful way? Did it depict Christian life in a plausible manner (in some genres, this would be symbolic)?  Do you think the work adds something of literary value?

HOW TO NOMINATE FINALIST(S):

  • Give title and author, category, and tell us 40+ words why you like the book so much.
  • Nominate in one category or all, only one novel per category, only one nomination per novel.
  • Give a link to your social networking site, web site, or blog. Must have been created before November 1, 2015.
  • Email the above to:  graceawards@yahoo.com

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction: title of novel and author. In 40+ words, why did you like the book.

Contemporary Romance/Historical Romance: title of novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historical Suspense: title of novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Speculative Fiction — sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc: title of the novel and author. In 40+words, why you like the book.

Action-Adventure/Western/Historic Epic Fiction: title of the novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Young Audlt (YA): title of the novel. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

 

After you chose in which category/ies you want to nominate a novel, copy and answer the simple questions and email to graceawards@yahoo.com

Reader Nominations Begin!!! ~ Grace Awards 2015

Grace AwardsThe sixth annual Grace Awards is thrilled to announce that reader voting for Finalists commenced on December 31, 2015 and will end at midnight and ends February 28, 2016.

Wow! Get in on it!!!

The Grace Awards is reader driven. That means in the first round readers vote for their favorite novels and chose “Finalists” in five literary categories.

WHO CAN VOTE FOR NOVELS:

Individuals (not organizations). Readers who maintain a networking page (Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, Linkedin, Ning sites, a blog, etc.) created before November 1, 2015. We check each link to verify there’s a real person there.

Books, Reading

Readers can only vote for ONE novel in each category.

Authors are also readers and can vote, but not for their own novel(s). DON’T vote against yourself, simply vote in the other genre categories for novels you deem worthy.

Editors, publishers, agents can vote, but not for a book they authored or co-authored. 

Board members and judges can vote, but not for their own novel(s).

TYPES OF NOVELS READERS MAY CONSIDER: Traditional Christian, Inspirational, realistic and/or gritty Christian and edgy Christian, stories from a Christian worldview, redemptive themed, biblical, Messianic, catholic, faith-based, Christian and/or Messianic mystical themes, values imbued, grace and forgiveness oriented, marriage and family friendly, depicting Christian lifestyle (can be struggling with it), spiritually and emotionally healing fiction…of 55 thousand words or more. At this time we do not have a category for anthologies.

Books, a stack

CRITERIA FOR NOVELS:

Original novels presenting a Christian worldview written in English, published in hard cover, trade paperback, or in Ebook format.

Traditional publishers, Small press, Indie publishers, self-published works. To us, Pbooks and Ebooks all compete on the same level playing field.

The novel must have been released between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015.

Most of all, the novel must reach the highest of literary standards and add something of value to Christian, inspirational, faith and values based fiction, and to the world at large.

BOOK CATEGORIES:

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction  –  women’s issues and/or men’s issues, can have humor and suspense elements

Contemporary Romance/Historic Romance — the primary element is love/marriage, then or now

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historic Suspense — crime fiction, there’s probably a body

Speculative — sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc

Action/Adventure, Western, Historic Epic Fiction — exploits, quest, daring, expansive

Young Adult (YA) — appeals to ages 12 – 22-ish

**Note: submit Urban Fiction into the category where it best fits (ie, Women’s Fiction, Young Adult, etc.)

Books, Reading 5

READER VOTING SUGGESTIONS:

1. Was the novel well written? Did the author use language correctly? Did it make sense?

2. Was the plotline logical? Did any plot turns surprise you? In a good way, as in what a surprise but this really works — or in a bad way, as in “Yikes” this doesn’t work at all?

3. Did the characters feel like living people? Could you identify with the characters and their situations in the novel? Were the scenes plausible?

4. How about pacing? Did you ever get bored?

5. Was the novel true to its setting: time, place?

6. Was the novel entertaining? Did it uplift, send you on an emotional roller coaster, have you on the edge of your seat, tickle your funny bone (depending on the category)?

8. Did the novel engage your Christian walk in a meaningful way? Did it depict Christian life in a plausible manner (in some genres, this would be symbolic)?  Do you think the work adds something of literary value?

HOW TO NOMINATE FINALIST(S):

  • Give title and author, category, and tell us 40+ words why you like the book so much.
  • Nominate in one category or all, only one novel per category, only one nomination per novel.
  • Give a link to your social networking site, web site, or blog. Must have been created before November 1, 2015.
  • Email the above to:  graceawards@yahoo.com

Women’s Fiction/General Fiction: Name of novel and author. In 40+ words, why did you like the book.

Contemporary Romance/Historical Romance: Name of novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller/Historical Suspense: Name of novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Speculative Fiction — sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc: Name of the novel and author. In 40+words, why you like the book.

Action-Adventure/Western/Historic Epic Fiction: Name of the novel and author. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

Young Audlt (YA): Name of the novel. In 40+ words, why you like the book.

 

After you chose in which category/ies you want to nominate a novel, copy and answer the simple questions and email to graceawards@yahoo.com

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR WITH LOTS OF GREAT READING!!!

New Year

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