Grace Filled Fiction Spotlight ~ Summer Book Bash 2019

GFFS Sum Bk Bash 2019

The Grace Filled Fiction Spotlight Summer Book Bash 2019 is now in full swing offering exciting reads by accomplished authors and lots of summer fun.

Delilah

DELILAH by Fay Lamb (Write Integrity Press) ~ With a setting like Central Florida, what’s not to love about Fay Lamb’s once-hated antagonist Delilah. The character shines in this summer romance that takes you from the streets of Orlando, Florida’s City Beautiful, to the backwater tributaries of the St. Johns River. There’s courtroom intrigue, laughter, tears, and the angst of meeting nature, up close and personal. Oh, and there’s a romance that you won’t soon forget. Perfect summer reading.

A New York YankeeA NEW YORK YANKEE ON STINKING CREEK by Carol McClain (Hummingbird Hill Press ~ What do you get when you mix a New York atheist with a conservative Christian from Tennessee? Chaos, mix-ups and lots of love as two opposite women find themselves neighbors on Stinking Creek, Tennessee. This novel will give you the perfect summer read for the beach or the backyard hammock or the long, well-lit evenings on the front porch. You’ll laugh and cry. You’ll see yourself and that neighbor (you know who I mean) in the pages of this novel. It’s a book you won’t regret buying. Ride the wave of readers of this brand new release who will take this book to the top of the best seller list.Courting Danger

COURTING DANGER by Nike N. Chillemi (Crime Fictionista Press) ~ Exciting summer reading for mystery lovers. This novel has been called an inspirational detective novel and a cozy thriller. Young women are being murdered in a beach town. A female detective feels she knows the murderer, but can’t place him and it’s tearing at her. Meanwhile she’s falling for the man she’s got as her number one suspect, based on the facts of the case. Still, she can’t shake the feeling she’s seen the real killer somewhere before. Take this novel for intriguing beach-side or pool-side reading. 99 cents.

Mist O'er the Voyageur

MIST O’ER THE VOYAGEUR by Naomi Musch (Smitten Historical Romance) ~ With so many great books to read this summer, which one do you pick up next? How about a romantic adventure as exciting as a summer vacation itself? In 1807, on an unseasonably warm spring day in Montreal, Brigitte Marchal has no idea that eluding a cruel suitor, finding a baby abandoned on the steps of a convent, and crossing paths with a rugged Lake Superior voyageur will lead her toward an adventure into the wilderness. Disguised as a boy, but harboring the hopes and longings of a woman, Brigitte searches for hope and truth, and along the way she might discover a love she never expected.

Talk Like A Pirate

TALK LIKE A PIRATE by Suzanne D. Williams (Amazon Digital Services) ~ What’s a 17th century pirate doing in a 20th century world? Captain John Swithin set out to recover a family relic during a violent storm, but lost in the turbulent waves, he washes up on shore, three centuries later. Left in the care of his rescuer, beautiful independent Idelle Prescott, reality sinks in, he may never get home. A truth that matters less and less the more they are together. Time-travel romance with a hint of mystery set in America’s oldest city. Fun summer reading for only 99 cents.

The Revisionary

THE REVISIONARY by Kristen Hogrefe (Write Integrity Press) ~ Summer is 2149 is anything but steamy. In fact, it’s ice cold, and the political climate, even colder. However, nineteen-year-old Portia blazes forward in her plan to rescue her brother from his satellite exile the only way she knows how: by joining the ruling elite. Her plan derails when she’s wrongly accused of helping the Rogues fighting for freedom the rebel way, and she must decide if it’s better to rewrite the rules or join those who break them. Her story presents the perfect summertime blend of sizzling suspense and ice cold tension. 99 cents July 3 thru 7.

One Step BAck

ONE STEP BACK: A TITUS RAY THRILLER by Luana Ehrlich (Potter’s Word Publishing) ~ Can’t get away from a vacation this summer? Zero funds? Enjoy a fun summer read with an exotic location instead. In this espionage thriller, CIA intelligence officer Titus Ray has been recruiting assets willing to feed him intel on the Iranian opposition. When he unexpectedly meets Amir Madani, one of Iran’s premier nuclear scientists, he can’t resist the opportunity to pursue him as a CIA asset. Although a beautiful Iranian socialite warns Titus to stay away from Madani, he ignores her advice. The consequences prove disastrous for Titus, and as the secret police close in on him, he’s forced to find shelter with a group of Iranian Christians, who risk their own lives to save him.

Love's Delicate Blossom

LOVE’S DELICATE BLOSSOM: Peaches and Dreams Book 3 by Ada Brownell (Amazon Digital Services) ~ An historical romantic suspense that’s perfect for summer reading. Hoping to use her talents to bless others, Ritah O’Casey challenges a kidnapper, works in a World War I military clinic, won’t sat “Yes” to a marriage proposal, and fragrant peach blossoms carry a message of life and love. Kindle Countdown Deal, 99 cents July 1-6. Peach blossoms…so summery.

Roadkill

ROADKILL: DOUBLE BARREL MYSTERIES #1 by Barbara Ellen Brink (Barbara Ellen Brink) ~ A nostalgic return to the tiny Lake Superior port town where he grew up, places Detective Blake Gunner and his wife Shelby in the deep end of trouble. Someone doesn’t want them looking into a local woman’s hit-and-run or asking too many questions about her past, and they’ll do whatever it takes to make them stop. Untangling this maze of lies, blackmail, and old family grudges may just be the death of them. Summer is heating up, so take a sip of that ice-cold drink and settle into my fictional town of Port Scuttlebutt. You will fall in love with this mystery-solving duo. The Gunners are romantic Double Barrel fun! 99 cents thru July 6th.

Julianne

JULIANNE by Rebekah Lyn (Real Life Books & Media) ~Julianne is an exasperated woman with one man from her past and one from her present vying for her heart, but is she finally learning she is more than enough on her own? The calming sound of ocean waves or the cheerful song of birds on the lake will both make a wonderful soundtrack for this story of self-discovery….and a wonderful summertime read.

Daring To Live

DARING TO LIVE by Mary Vee (Never Give Up Stories) ~ Summer is the best time to read a patriotic novel — June 1 through July 14 is a busy time of year even for those without work. Survival becomes a 24 hour a day job. Had Staff Sergeant Ethen Hartman not received temporary work in his dad’s shop, he’d have no choice but to roam the streets begging for money and looking for housing like Liz Westcott. As the only survivor of his unit, PTSD stopped his token efforts to help her. It took 34 days to convince her she could dare to live another day. Thirty-four days for both to see their worth. 2019 Selah finalist

A Dangerous Deception

A DANGEROUS DECEPTION by Debra E. Marvin (Forget Me Not Romances) ~ Intrigue and a charming Irishman add to the summer heat in ‘the wickedest town in the west’ when Andromeda Barr trails a murderer to Jerome, AZ. Be warned. The ice will melt in your forgotten glass as you shadow Pinkerton Agent Connell O’Brien. Hiding his identity is part of the job, but when he meets the surprising entertainer, he wonders how many secrets are too many. Performing is Andromeda’s blood, but she has to believe she’s lying for all the right reasons— Will these two solo acts join forces before the danger of discovery becomes a matter of life or death? This one is a perfect read  for summer intrigue lovers.

Advertisements

Grace Filled Fiction Christmas Sweeps ~ 2018

Grace Christmas Book Sweeps 1

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given…[KJV]

The authors who support and participate in Grace Filled Fiction Spotlight activities rejoice at the above Scripture. We are coming into a wonderful, exciting and happy time of year. So, in the spirit of the season, we announce the Grace Filled Fiction Christmas Sweeps ~ 2018.

Eight authors are promoting their novels/novellas … and they will give away a copy of their book to 8 winners (picked at random) from readers who leave comments. Please give a first and second choice, so (as much as possible) we can give you a book you’d like to read. This is our authors’ Christmas gift to winners. Click above, under the blog’s title, to leave a comment. Winners will be selected between December 26th and January 1. We will begin notifying winners after the new year.

Red Bow

Mist O'er the Voyageur

MIST O’er THE VOYAGEUR by Naomi Musch ~ She escaped one fate—but now whose truth can she trust? On a cold December’s eve, in a wilderness trading post on Lake Superior, Brigitte Marchal, faces her biggest dilemma yet:  The door opened, sweeping the room with a violent breeze. Cinders sparked in the fireplace, falling on the hearth and shooting up the chimney. The wisping smoke of the tobacco dissipated. (He) released Brigitte’s hands as heads turned, and murmurs and motion swept over the gathering…Hunters and porters spilled through the door. Men in layers of fur and tall, blackened moccasins, their bodies smelling of travel. Red cheeks surrounded by thick beards. One man pushed through. René.  You’ll want to grab a cup of hot chocolate and curl up with this 1807 romantic adventure of the Fur Trade.  Website  Purchase on Amazon

Rebecca's Legacy

REBECCA’S LEGACY by Betty Thomason Owens ~ Looking for a beautiful stocking-stuffer for that book lover on your list? One reviewer calls Rebecca’s Legacy “Well-written, engaging and nicely-paced.” Amy Emerson is a diva with an attitude that catches Matt Wordsworth’s attention from the start. He’s a man with a plan. Just returned from the war, he’s determined to finish law school and pass the bar before he even thinks about settling down. When Amy’s Dad hires him to help keep her out of trouble, he quickly realizes he’s in over his head. “Interesting, developed and clever characters come together in a satisfying and steady storyline. Enough tension to keep the reader hanging on and captivated until the very satisfying ending.” Give a gift that will inspire your loved ones—entertainment at its best—a story that reminds the reader of the free gift of God’s grace, available to all. Website  Purchase on Amazon

Sabotaged Christmas

SABOTAGED CHRISTMAS (An Appleton, WV Romantic Mystery, Book 1) by Carole Brown ~ A contemporary romantic mystery to warm your heart at Christmas. Gossip, a Spanish proposal, an inheritance, and a sabotaged construction business all converge to play a part in ruining Christmas for Toni. Will the mysterious person behind it all succeed in pulling off the biggest scam Appleton, West Virginia has ever seen and destroy Toni’s last chance at happiness with the man of her dreams?  Amazon Author Page  Purchase on Amazon

Blood Speaks, Cover

BLOOD SPEAKS (A Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels/Dawson Hughes Novel) by Nike N. Chillemi ~  “Ronnie”, Brooklyn gal PI, waited a long time for the solitaire on her finger. When her sometimes boss, a shadowy figure and director of a secret government organization, offers a pre-Christmas, one-week bridal shopping vacay, she jumps at it. Joined by her  bridesmaids, Ronnie sets off for Heritage Cove, Maryland, ready to enjoy the town’s winter festival. Their joyous stay at the Heritage Cove Inn is shattered by a murder. It doesn’t take long for Ronnie and her gal-pals to become targets of the killer. Taylor County Deputy Sheriff, Lieutenant Dawson Hughes leaves Texas to protect his bride-to-be.  Blog  Purchase on Amazon

A Little Christmas Magic

A LITTLE CHRISTMAS MAGIC (The Cowboy and the Librarian) by Suzanne D. Williams ~ Reading a book picked up at discount table was supposed to be entertainment for librarian, Paige Ridgeway, until the discovery of a vintage book and an encounter with one of Santa’s elves brings its pages to life. It’s as if she and fictional cowboy, Sterling Newcombe, are searching for one another. Which is ridiculous. Yet magical things can happen at Christmas, the mending of hearts and the discovery of true love, if she’ll only believe. A fantasy romance where books come to life, perfect reading during this miraculous time of the year.  Website  Purchase on Amazon

Christmas Port Scuttlebutt

CHRISTMAS IN PORT SCUTTLEBUTT by Barbara Ellen Brink ~ Snow is falling, the temperature is dropping, and a young woman and her newborn have gone missing. A suicidal man, found unconscious near Lake Superior, may be the last person to have seem them. Ironically, he can’t help… because he made a wish that he had never been born.Set two nights before Christmas, this novella will put you in the holiday spirit from the opening scene. With a Shakespearian twist of The Winter’s Tale and a nod toward It’s a Wonderful Life, CHRISTMAS IN PORT SCUTTLEBUTT has all the charm, mystery, romance, and humor that’s needed to curl up in your favorite chair with this holiday season. And don’t forget to pick up extra copies for all the book lovers on your list.  Website Pre-Order

Christmas with the Enemy

CHRISTMAS WITH THE ENEMY by Mary Vee ~ Mountain folk have long repeated the legend of a great and powerful blizzard that can curtain the Rockies with no notice, trapping unsuspecting guests, ruining plans, and putting lives at risk. CHRISTMAS WITH THE ENEMY takes a sprinkle of Romeo & Juliet, adds a chilly wind of City Slicker then tops with a glacier helping of Scrooge in this Montana meets Chicago Christmas Blizzard Tale in desperate need of Peace on Earth. A reviewer says: “A Hallmark Contender.”  Website  Purchase on Amazon

Chasing Christmas

CHASING CHRISTMAS by Lynn Dean ~Dreaming of a White Christmas…and maybe something more? Kick your feet up and get cozy with a new book that’s sure to help you find your Christmas spirit! When Angela Bell’s dream of writing children’s literature outgrows her small Texas town, she makes an impulsive move to New York City hoping to find a new career opportunity before the holidays…but what she finds isn’t at all what she expected. As her funds and her chances dwindle, will she find her “Christmas miracle”? Or is happiness waiting at the end of her own country road? This short, sweet contemporary holiday romance is perfect for an afternoon read or to give as a stocking-stuffer  Facebook Author Page  Purchase on Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 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

 

 

 

Grace Awards Summer Book Bash ~ day four

 

GA Book Bash, Dock

We’re winding up our summer book bash, but it’s been such fun. The authors and novels have been spectacular.

RevengeREVENGE by Paula Rose

A summer vacation, staycation, or a beach read? Enjoy this romantic suspense. As a job coach, it’s up to Olivia Foster to ensure her clients work in a safe environment, understand their positions, and serve their employer’s mission. The death of her brother drives her career choice, and she loves her job. It remains her only focus until one of her autistic clients goes missing. Then Olivia’s employer ends her position and adds her to the suspect list, but she makes plans to bring the missing young man home. Meanwhile, Detective Lt. Phillip Landon is deep into second-guessing his career choice, but his well-honed instincts see major flaws inside this missing person’s case. Surprising contacts, mysterious happenings, and threats can turn deadly. Can he keep Olivia safe, protect his heart, remove the job coach from someone’s target list, and adjust to the new lives of his old family?

Crooked LinesCROOKED LINES by Holly Michael

Thoughtful reading for a balmy summer day! On the shores of Lake Michigan, Rebecca Meyer seeks escape. Guilt-ridden over her little sister’s death, she sets her heart on India, a symbol of peace. Across the ocean in South India, Sagai Raj leaves his tranquil hill station home and impoverished family to answer a higher calling. Pushing through diverse cultural and religious milieus, he labors toward his goals, while wrong turns and bad choices block Rebecca from hers. Traveling similar paths and bridged across oceans through a priest, the two desire peace and their divine destiny. But vows and blind obedience at all costs must be weighed…and buried memories, unearthed. CROOKED LINES, a beautifully crafted debut novel, threads the lives of two determined souls from different continents and cultures. Compelling characters struggle with spirituality through despair and deceptions in search of truth.

First and GoalFIRST AND GOAL, What Football Taught Me About Never Giving Up by Jake Byrne and H. Michael

A terrific summer read, especially for the guys.  Jake Byrne dreamed of playing professional football. He had the size, the talent, the drive…but at age 14, he found out he also had type 1 diabetes. Still, Jake was determined to reach his goal. And God was determined to guide and empower him all along the way. Jake’s journey to the NFL is the backdrop for this collection of inspiring devotions based on nearly a hundred football terms. Jake takes you to the weight room, practice field, and even across the goal line. You’ll feel as if you’re lined up next to him, facing a very large defender you’re about to take down. He also includes Scripture and then ties up each story in a way that feels real and encouraging. You’ll discover…what to do when God calls an audible in your life, how to respond when God puts you on special teams, why prayer is never an incomplete pass.

The Redemption of Caralynne Hayman

THE REDEMPTION OF CARALYNNE HAYMAN by Carole Brown

Summer is the time to get caught up in a realistic, emotional book that opens your eyes to the real world. Caralynne Hayman is angry and bitter over the abuse and death of her eleven-year- old daughter from the hands of her religious group. Dayne faces men unwilling to turn their backs on the cult training he despises. Cara faces men who follow their leader in abuse toward their wives and the young girls of the group. Cara is considered rebellious and inappropriate to befriend. Dayne is the apple of Elder Simmons’ eye—until he takes a stand against their teachings. Can Cara overcome the feelings that have governed her most of her life? Can she learn to trust Dayne, and most of all a God whom she sees as uncaring—if he’s really there at all? Only Dayne’s prayers and love can reach Cara and show her the way to redemption, and Cara must recognize and accept God’s love and forgiveness before she goes too far.

With Music in their HeartsWITH MUSIC IN THEIR HEARTS by Carole Brown

Summertime is a good time to dream, but it’s only when we follow God’s plan for our lives that we have peace–just as Tyrell and Emma Jaine find out in WITH MUSIC IN THEIR HEARTS. Angry at being rejected for military service, Minister Tyrell Walker accepts the call to serve as a civilian spy within his own country. As Tyrell works to keep his double life a secret and locate the traitor, he refuses to believe that Emma Jaine could be involved even when he sees a red-haired woman in the arms of another man. Could the handsome and svelte banker who’s also determined to win Emma Jaine’s hand for marriage, be the dangerous man he’s looking for? Worse, is Papa Rayner so worried about his finances and keeping his girls in the style they’re used to, that he’ll stoop to espionage? Will their love survive the danger and personal issues that arise to hinder the path of true love?

Grace Awards Summer Book Bash ~ day two

GA Book Bash, Dock

 

The Grace Awards 2104 Summer Book Bash in now in full swing offering exciting reads by accomplished authors.

What God Brings TogetherWHAT GOD BRINGS TOGETHER by Melissa Wardell

Thoughtful summer reading. When life makes a tragic turn, Emma must push the hurt and pain aside to make a life for her three children. Eight years of doing what must be done gets in the way of healing the brokenness. Can she trust God and forgive the pain from the past to have a future of love? After years of aimless wandering, David returns home in hopes of finding redemption from his past. A chance meeting and a budding friendship with Emma triggers a longing to have a second chance at the one thing he walked away from – family. Can he move past the self—doubt and embrace the second chance God ha given him? What God Brings Together is a story of forgiveness, second chances, and being bold enough to love after the pain.

The Love CowardTHE LOVE COWARD by Naomi Musch

Settle into a vintage summer romance on the post WWII home front. Burke Delgard has returned from war safe and whole, but Tulla Johanson’s dreams of them finally marrying and working her family’s farm together crumble the day he walks out of the church and over her heart to chase a baseball career. Thank heaven for friends like Joan, Walter, and now Van. Burke’s war buddy Van came to town for the wedding, never anticipating he’d rescue Burke’s humiliated fiancée or begin an awkward friendship with her. Having carried his own secrets home from the war, he’s determined to keep them barred inside. Even if Tulla might hold the key to unlocking them, Burke clearly wants Tulla back, and even her old pal Walter is getting in the way. Van is wounded, Burke’s regretful, Walt’s hopeful, and Tulla’s vulnerable; and she might be the biggest love coward of all.

TREVELYAN by Naomi Musch

TrevelynSummer Vacation Fantasy Getaway! “It’s my new favorite book!” ~ If, like this reader, you enjoy epic retellings of classic tales, then this is the summer vacation fantasy for you. You might believe you know the tale of Belle. She’s not a typical girl of Gilmer like her sisters who live only to find a suitable, wealthy match. But you’ve probably not heard about the downfall of the kingdom, the warring faeries, or the elves who fled the land. You’ve not met the pair of swashbucklers and Belle’s three brothers who set out on a quest to rescue her from the Monster Lord who has her bound. Hideous creatures and madness wait to prey upon the careless in a land where faerie magic has taken an evil turn; but a girl like Belle — and true love — can conquer all, even a wicked faerie queen and the most beastly of princes.

Summer StormsSUMMER STORMS by Rebekah Lyn

Summer Storms is a story of love, loss and renovation. Thanks to the love and support of friends and a renewed commitment to her faith Elizabeth Reynolds has moved past the hurt and anger of her parents death. Her job as concierge at Hotel Lago, a boutique hotel in downtown Orlando is challenging and fills her need to be successful but one thing is missing. When a once in a lifetime opportunity to renovate a broken down home comes along she snaps it up. Sparks and clashes with her handsome, but deeply troubled contractor, Jeffrey Robbins threaten to slow the renovation but when Orlando becomes the target of three summer storms, hurricanes Charlie, Frances and Jeanne, her team bonds together. In the aftermath of the storms what will be the fate of Lizzie’s home and heart?What a great summer read.

Out For BllodOUT FOR BLOOD by Marcy Dyer

Another book to stick in your beach bag, Out for Blood will keep you turning page after page as you join Dani in her quest to stay alive in the wake of her sister’s brutal murder. Dialysis nurse, Danielle Battershawn’s, life is turned upside down when her identical twin is murdered. As she strives to deal with yet another death, the killer sets his sights on eliminating her. Can handsome security consultant, Tyler Covington, keep her alive?

Blood And LiesBLOOD AND LIES by Marcy Dyer

Blood & Lies is a great beach read. As a buried secrets are uncovered and lives hang in the balance, you’ll be thankful for the bright summer sun. In the midst of a hot Ukrainian summer, JD Miller chaperones a group of teens a mission trip to Kherson, Ukraine. One of the boys vanishes from the group without a trace. Leandra Davis hasn’t seen her father in over twenty years when he shows up and asks her to fly to Ukraine to join the search for a brother she’s never met. When she and her best friend fly to Ukraine to search for the kidnapped teen, she meets the passionate paramedic, JD Miller. Together, they search for the missing young man and begin to uncover deadly secrets Leandra’s father wants to keep hidden.

Grace Awards Summer Book Bash ~ day one

 

GA Book Bash, BeachWow! The Grace Awards 2014 Summer Book Bash is off and running. What a blast! Summer is such a great time for reading.

Lone WolfLONE WOLF by Tracy Krauss

A terrific summer read. Thomas Lone Wolf, from WIND OVER MARSHDALE, is back in this novella length romance. He’s recovered from a brush with death – and from a broken heart. His work of opening a First Nations cultural center at an archaeological site near the town of Marshdale is almost complete. Once his son graduates from high school, he and his daughter will have to move on to the next project. Just when he has resigned himself to being a single dad for the rest of his life, he meets a woman who seems perfect. But can his wounded heart take a chance on love again?

NEIGHBORSNEIGHBORS Complete Series 1 by Tracy Krauss

How well do you know the people living next door? This fun filled romantic comedy series, perfect for a summer read, follows the lives of Lester Tibbett, former rodeo cowboy, his naïve sister Patsi, and a full cast of quirky characters living in an apartment in Calgary. Meet control freak Professor Sherri Chan; her twin brother Sherman, an architect moving back from Toronto; coffee shop owners and civil activists Tamara Spence and Carman Lamonte; newspaper man Steve Russell; Jed Malloy, Newfie redneck who is a bit rough around the edges; and so many more. Full of comical mix-ups, a bit of intrigue, and of course, enough romance to spice things up! NEIGHBORS Book 1 comes as nine separate episodes, each one from a different character’s point of view.

Come Eat At My TableCOME EAT AT MY TABLE by Ruth O’Neil

“You used to love playing in the rain. I would let you and Hope go play in the rain on warm, summer days. You two would get absolutely soaked, but you loved it!” Karin said. Ahh! The beauty of summer days as a child. No worries. No cares. Now, I long for something a little more relaxed, like reading a book. In Come Eat at My Table, Karin longs for the relaxing days of a perfect childhood summer, only her childhood wasn’t perfect and the cat is about to be let out of the bag. Secretive. Angry. Fearful. Hurt. Unforgiving. All these emotions will come raging back to the surface after years of repression and a chance encounter. Until Karin faces her past she and her family cannot face their future. Can she find the strength to forgive?

BelongingBELONGING by Ruth O’Neil

“My dad and I used to go to yard sales every summer. We would find books and buy them all. Then we would come home and spend the rest of the afternoon reading. We went to one huge flea market a couple times a year. There was a booth there full of books. We would spend hours searching through them for books we didn’t already have.” Summer is the time of year when laziness is almost permissible. It’s nice to do nothing but sit in the shade and read a book. In Belonging, Shelly has her own summer memories. Those memories are bittersweet now that her father is gone. Her summer memories help her decide to do some digging. In the midst of that digging God nudges Shelly to get out of her comfort zone. That’s easy for some, but for Shelly it may be impossible.

She's MineSHE’S MINE by Tammy Doherty

“Heart-stopping suspense and breathtaking romance” This summer is going to be explosive for Caitlin Harrington and Sean Taggart. Caitlin 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. Volunteer Firefighter 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? “Don’t you worry about Sean,” Randy said. “We need to take care of you.” Caitlin pushed him away and looked up the hill. The glow she’d assumed was work lightssuddenly took on an ominous tint. As they all watched, flames shot up into the night sky.

Celtic KnotCELTIC KNOT by Tammy Doherty

Counterfeiting, kidnapping and murder…all in a day’s work for Kyle Lachapelle. Forced to return to Prophecy, Colorado, after the death of her beloved husband, Abby Finnigan struggles to provide for her young daughter. The cruel and callous treatment from her family taught Abby to guard her heart. When she meets Kyle Lachapelle, he seems nice but he works for her father and brother so how can she trust him? Secret Service Operative Kyle Lachapelle is working undercover, investigating a counterfeiting organization. He’s attracted to Abby yet her connection to his case makes him wary. She could provide essential information…or compromise everything. Unless Abby and Kyle risk trusting one another, someone may get away with murder.~ If you want a novel full of suspense, fast-paced Western action and a healthy dose of romance, be sure to take CELTIC KNOT along with you to the beach or on vacation.

HARMFUL INTENT by Nike Chillemi

Harmful IntentA sassy, action-packed read, great for summer. ~ Betrayal runs in private investigator Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels’ family. So, why is she surprised when her husband of one year cheats on her? The real shock is his murder, with the local lawman pegging her as the prime suspect. Ronnie Ingels is a Brooklyn bred private investigator who travels to west Texas, where her cheating husband is murdered. As she hunts the killer to clear her name, she becomes the hunted. Deputy Sergeant Dawson Hughes, a former Army Ranger, is a man folks want on their side. Only he’s not so sure at first, he’s on the meddling New York PI’s side. As the evidence points away from her, he realizes the more she butts in, the more danger she attracts to herself.

Darkest HourDARKEST HOUR by Nike Chillemi

Lucinda Byrne is a terrific swimmer, but this summer the water is treacherous for her. ~ A petite widow and sole support of her son and grandparents, is framed for the murder of her boss. Wealthy village residents conspire with the DA to indict her and stop further investigation. The medical examiner thinks the shooter was a tall individual and when his report is shoved aside, starts snooping trying to clear her and in the process falls in love with her. When Lucinda discovers the body of her boss, his A-List society fiancée, backed up by her powerful family and a corrupt DA, accuses Lucinda of murder. She struggles on, shielding her five-year-old son, her feisty grandfather and arthritic grandmother from the ugliness. She mistrusts the dapper ME, thinking he’s a ladies’ man. Hank Jansen, the county ME who’s had his share of pain and loss, doesn’t know if this little widow was in on the murder, but he knows by the trajectory of the bullet she’s too short to have pulled the trigger. His professional opinion ignored, he begins his own investigation and at least one cop accuses him of an ethics violation. He certainly can’t deny he’s fallen head over heels for.