Betrayed by his fiancée and best friend, he left forever. When Jake Reynolds left Archer Springs, Texas, in June 1957, he planned to return at the end of the summer, but that was before he found out his best friend and his fiancée had eloped together. Devastated and betrayed, he never returned to his hometown.
Fast forward twenty-five years. Jake receives a letter from a local land developer stating the property willed to him by his aunt and uncle will be destroyed and used for other purposes unless he returns and sells the land and house. A long-ago promise to his aunt and uncle that he would always keep the property in the family comes back to haunt him.
Now he needs to return and keep his promise, but that means coming face to face with the two people who betrayed him twenty-five years ago.
Vickie Phelps is a native Texan and has been writing since 1988. She loves to mentor other writers and in 2009 founded the East Texas Christian Writer’s Group which meets monthly for the purpose of encouraging and instructing writers in their pursuit of publication.
When she’s not writing, Vickie loves nothing more than reading a good book or discussing them with other readers. She spent eighteen years working for an independent bookstore, first as a bookseller, then as manager and buyer for the store. She retired from the store in 2012 and writes fulltime from her home in the piney woods of East Texas.
If you like romance filled with suspense, then this book is for you. As I got involved with the characters’ lives, the historical setting of morals and values made me long for simpler times when your word was your word and sweethearts fell in love and were committed to each other no matter what.
It’s a little bit historical romance mixed with modern troubles. It becomes a page-turner as trouble compounds from the size of a lit match to a raging inferno.
Prepare to anticipate the unthinkable as good and evil battle due to miscommunication and assumptions from years gone by.
As I visit my BFF from high school who lives in Wisconsin, I realize she lives just a few minutes from the lake mentioned in this book, Nebagamon.
I am so excited – no; I’m jumping-up-and-down thrilled – because for the first time ever reviewing a book, I can actually go to the place it talks about. Lake Nebagamon is a real place, not a fictional location made up by the author of the book I’m enjoying. This is non-fiction at its best.
When things like this happen, they are called a “God-wink” because I don’t believe in coincidences.
It’s a refreshing read. Every page I turned brought me thoughtful delight and encouragement, not only with scripture, but also design. This book is eye-pleasing in every way, as each page flows into the next story.
It’s a devotional you won’t want to wait for the next day to read and you will not want to put it down. Marci Seither has crafted a masterpiece from her heart. It’s the perfect devotional to supplement anyone’s personal quiet time.
It’s full of resources. Lakeside Retreat will add relaxing and thoughtful personal lake-time stories, scriptures, and prayers as well as surprise additions like games, crafts, recipes and even emergency supply bag suggestions to sustain you for 72 hours.
What other devotional can you name that comes packed with so much information and fun?
Marci, I LOVE this book and can’t wait to share it with my lake-loving friends.
This book has come into my life at the most appropriate time. My life has been turned upside down, packed up, moved out and on to new things, thousands of miles away from my normal life, permanently.
In the process, I am hurting and struggle every day. Dr. Michelle Bengtson’s book, Today is Going to Be a Good Day: 90 Promises from God to Start Your Day Off Right, has come to my rescue.
Dr. Michelle has been struggling with cancer, which has caused major health issues for months. Yet through her ongoing pain, she published a book to encourage and uplift its readers.
Dr. Michelle’s strength through a difficult trial, in and of itself, should inspire us. But she has opened her heart and bared her soul to share personal thoughts she kept through her days of painful struggles.
I have been reading her book daily and love how she includes scripture and a suggested piece of music to listen to. I find myself singing the song and if I’m not familiar with it, I will look it up. Christian music always lifts my spirits.
What is really cool is I already had a reminder on my wall about having a good day.
Dr. Michelle’s book is compact, making it easy to tuck into in a purse or briefcase. It’s one I plan on sharing with hurting friends.
God knows what He is doing if we trust Him, and I believe there is a bright side to life no matter how crazy it can get. This book has truly been a blessing to me, and I am grateful Dr. Michelle chose to share it with the world.
It’s easy to feel unheard and misunderstood in today’s age of hyper-speed communication.
But guess what? Feeling misunderstood is nothing new.
In this unique book, Mary DeMuth tells the stories of ten women in the Bible who were misunderstood in their own time (and often still are).
This book offers real-life conversations about what it means to endure the pain of being misunderstood and reminds you that there is always One who understands you perfectly.
Mary DeMuth has always been an author who knows how to address tough subjects with grace.
As a woman, I feel misunderstood and underappreciated all the time. I struggle with feelings of inadequacy and not being good enough.
How wonderful it is to have a book that gives insight into the lives of Biblical women who went through the same feelings women go through but may not talk about. Those hidden feelings are universal and though women may experience them differently, this book gives camaraderie to modern women from relatable women of a different era.
Biblical women helping women deal with issues only women understand. I am reminded that we are not meant to be alone in this world.
DeMuth has crafted this book with great care to encourage and strengthen women in spirit and faith. It is worth every minute of a misunderstood woman’s time, or, if you happen to be a man, read it to learn more of how women think and feel.
The Most Misunderstood Women of the Bible – purchase on Amazon
Patrick Barrett grew up on the back of a donkey. In the small village of Liscarroll, the young boy helped his family run a sanctuary for abandoned and abused donkeys.
Struggling in school, Patrick only felt truly accepted in the presence of these funny, fuzzy, touching animals. It was like magic, how he and the donkeys understood each other. He became a true “donkey whisperer”—reading their body language, communicating with them in ways they could understand, and teaching himself how to “speak” in their distinctive calls.
But when Patrick was of age, he shipped out with the Irish Army and encountered unimaginable wartime horrors in Lebanon and Kosovo. In the aftermath, he returned home a broken man, sinking into the depths of PTSD and addictions. He believed nothing could save him. But he hadn’t counted on the donkeys.
Sanctuary is the remarkable true story of how faith turned one lost man’s life around with the help of the rescue animals who loved him. It’s an antidote to despair and a call to hope, revealing the beauty and wonder of Ireland as you’ve never seen it before.
This true story of an Irish village, a man who lost his way and the rescue donkeys that led him home should be recommended reading for all those in recovery programs of every kind.
Patrick shares his raw, honest emotions at every stage in his journey, from childhood alcoholism to humble submission to God’s call on his wayward heart. His open sharing of his experience evoked a range of emotions within me from sorrow to joy, frustration to clarity.
Woven within the story by analogy is his love for rescuing and relating to donkeys and their personality traits. Animal lovers will enjoy this read as Patrick truly has a soft heart for his four-legged friends and should be known as the ‘donkey whisperer.’
Patrick Barrett and Susy Flory, co-authors of Sanctuary.
Sanctuary will encourage and uplift an addicted heart to seek help, reminding the reader that God’s love is unconditional. I enjoyed this true story of rebellion and redemption and highly recommend it.
Francine Rivers’ latest novel, The Lady’s Mine, is true to Rivers’ writing form.
You’ll be in California Gold Rush days from page one to the end, feeling like you’re living it. Rivers’ detailed style draws the reader into that era with flair as you feel every bump on the washboard, dusty gravel roads, to slipping around on mud-slathered streets. Calvada, though fictional, is true to western settlements of those early California-Nevada days.
Then, just for fun, Rivers builds an unlikely romance between the main characters. Like the back cover reads, she’s new to the lawless mining town and he’s one of its most prominent citizens. Neither wants anything to do with the other. It will tug at your heart strings and have you laughing one minute and crying the next.
Yet another Francine Rivers novel you can’t put down.
Solomon’s Porch is an excellent read and has come at a timely place in my life.
My mom is in her last moments on this earth with dementia. Solomon’s struggle gives me fictional insight into what a person with dementia might feel and has helped me understand my mother’s struggle.
You will laugh. You will cry. Your emotions will ride a roller coaster, but you will love every minute of this craftily written novel. Janet Morris Grimes is a gifted writer and I look forward to reading more from her.
About the Author
Janet Morris Grimes may not have realized she was a writer at the time, but her earliest childhood memories were spent creating fairy-tale stories of the father she never knew. That desire to connect with the mysterious man in a treasured photograph gave her a deep love for the endless possibilities of a healing and everlasting story.
A wife of one, mother of three, and Tootsie to four, she currently writes from her quiet two-acre corner near Louisville, Kentucky. She’s spent the last few years preparing to introduce her novels and children’s stories to the world.
More from Janet
I’d have to say my inspiration for the character of Solomon Thomas came from my precious father-in-law. When we lost him almost ten years ago, we were inundated with countless stories of simple, behind-the-scenes acts of kindness he offered over many decades. I’m not sure he realized what a difference he made in the lives of others.
The same is true for my main character, Solomon Thomas. He comes from such a place of deep tragedy. Once he lost everything, he had nothing left to offer but himself. So he did.
There are many themes running throughout this story. A lost sense of home. Running out of time. Redemption and second chances. But more than this, connection and community. Sometimes, we are so trapped by our own brokenness, we don’t know how to let others in. But what if we did?
Solomon learned to do just that. Show up for people, and let them into his world as well. And over time, it was enough to breathe new life into his beloved town of Ginger Ridge.
What happens next? Solomon deserves a sequel, so I’ll be working on that very soon.
When a hurricane rips through Hooper Island, a tidal wave of TV crews follows and upsets the locals.
Brooks Crawforth agreed to volunteer crews helping to clean up and repair things on the island, not a whole home and garden series on the total renovation of several houses and a bit of cleanup on the side. He’s furious, and the show host is spitting nails at the person who blew it in the first place.
His and his father’s jobs are in jeopardy, the islanders are about to kill him, and that crazy show host blames him for her assistant’s last-minute, “you’ve-got-to-sign-this-now-or-we-can’t-come” contract.
One more thing. Did she have to be so cute?
He’s got even more trouble, though. Islanders are starting to blame Mallory Barrows for the invasion. Not only that, there are rumors of dismantling the association and allowing tourism on the islands. How’s he supposed to fix this mess?
They can’t stand each other, but if they can manage to flip off the enemy switch and flip on some cooperation, maybe their hearts’ll get flipped, too.
This “enemies to romance” novel introduces the next island in the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.
The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.
Using story to connect readers with the Master Storyteller.
Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours, and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.
About the Narrator
Speaking Life into Story
Queen of the one-eyebrow quirk, Christa DelSorbo auditioned for the role of Tarzan’s mom and has the photos to prove she ended up as the only cast member in a literal cast. These days, they keep her stuck in a box with a ball on a stick and only feed her when she reads another chapter of another fabulous book. She loves every minute. Or so they tell her. *eyebrow slowly raises *
Are you cherishing a marriage that’s off the charts? Or co-existing in a fragile one?
What we all really want is intimacy and tingling excitement. Is true love just a fairy tale? Or can life-long companionship be a reality? You bet it can! Author Cathy Krafve shares the personal stories and conversations she first created to help inspire success for her own kids’ marriages.
Marriage entails serious communication. So, we turn to the Master Communicator for strategies to soften hearts and strengthen resolve. Cathy will help you…
Initiate practical, foundational truths.
Replace magical thinking with rock solid miraculous biblical truths.
Understand why we get married in the first place.
Invigorate your closest relationship.
For instance, learn the no-fail trick for changing an argument back into a conversation.
Inspire the delightful results your heart is craving.
Cathy Krafve is the queen of conversation, so it makes sense for her to title her book Marriage Conversations.
The stories and scriptures are encouraging and uplifting, addressing practical and deep issues that are hard to talk about. Krafve writes with sincerity and humor in a balanced mix.
This book should be read by both husbands and wives alike. It is not a book about fixing your marriage, but it will definitely help to get hard conversations started.
I’ve been following Krafve since meeting her at Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference a few years back and if you like her book, I recommend contacting her to start up a heart-to-heart dialogue. She’s a gifted listener.
About the Author
Queen of Fun and Coffee Cup Philosopher, Cathy Primer Krafve delivers creativity and encouragement on every page.
She understands companionship begins with authentic conversation. With journalistic fervor and a knack for laughter and story-telling, Cathy puts a snappy spin on deeply spiritual truths.
Host of Fireside Talk Radio, her weekly blogs and podcasts reach over 2 million listeners and readers annually. Her audiences learn to leverage compassion and courage in order to engage in two-way conversational adventures.
Join the Fireside Tribe as we create life so beautiful in its imperfection generations after us will be retelling our stories with joy and laughter.
Truth with a Texas twang spoken here!
More from Cathy
From Blah to Breathtaking!
Why does conversation at home have to be so hard? What makes it hard? How do you keep hanging in there when it’s tough?
“So, Dave and I slogged ahead. Yuck. Like trudging through a chilly winter night in clumsy snow boots, we were determined to survive,” reports Author Cathy Krafve.
Then, they began to talk a little more openly to their closest friends. Yep, they were desperate. Interestingly, they discovered marriage conversations were a problem for a bunch of their friends, too.
“We picked up tons of new communication skills,” she adds, laughing, “Good thing, too, since we really NEEDED new skills!”
What can we change at home to train ourselves and our kiddos to have terrific conversations? Each chapter of Marriage Conversations offers great ideas you can try out at your house. Here are a few chapters:
Negotiating like an Oil Tycoon
Creating a Personal Etiquette
Only Keeping What We Give Away
Asking Power Questions
Understanding Fellowship as the Best Foreplay
Queen of Fun and Coffee Cup Philosopher, Cathy delivers creativity and encouragement on every page of Marriage Conversations: from co-existing to cherished.
While it’s the perfect book for your book club, Bible Study, or Sunday school class, Cathy has a more, ahem, intimate suggestion. Read it out loud with your spouse.
“What’s really great is the number of men who tell me they read it with their wife! Passing it back and forth. Wow! That’s genius,” she reports. “Truthfully, though, when guys tell me it’s the funniest book they’ve ever read, I assume it’s the only marriage book they’ve ever read!”
Each chapter ends with thought-provoking questions, personal applications, and prayer.
So, how things are with Dave and Cathy now?
“We still have arguments occasionally, maybe once a year. In some ways maybe it’s worse because it doesn’t happen very often. I get real panicky, like, Oh no! We’re falling back into our bad habits,” she confesses.
But she adds they now know how to get into a better conversation place quickly. Also, they intentionally cherish each other. So that’s really made a difference.
“But one thing I want people to know; this book is not about how to do it yourself. This book is about how I messed up. And here’s what I learned from my mistakes. If you want some good ideas, here are the things that worked for us,” says Cathy.
Tons and tons of good ideas. Anything she could get her hands on.
“Because I was originally writing for my children,” she explains. “So, I didn’t hold anything back. I don’t think anyone will feel preached at. I’m pretty sure reading friends will think, Okay this woman has been in the trenches. She gets it.”
Cathy is known for putting a snappy spin on deeply spiritual truths. She writes with journalistic fervor and a knack for laughter and story-telling.
Companionship begins with authentic conversations. How do we go from co-existing to cherished? Cathy understands good communication tools can change everything! Order two copies today; one for yourself and one to share with a friend!
Shirley Davenport is as much a patriot as her four brothers. She, too, wants to aid her country in the war efforts, but opportunities for women are limited. When her best friend Joan informs her that the Coast Guard has opened a new branch for single women, they both enlist in the SPARs, ready to help protect the home front.
Training is rigorous, and Shirley is disappointed that she and Joan are sent to separate training camps. At the end of basic training, Captain Webber commends her efforts and commissions her home to Maine under the ruse of a dishonorable discharge to help uncover a plot against the First Lady.
Shirley soon discovers nothing is as it seems. Who can she trust? Why do the people she loves want to harm the First Lady? With the help of Captain Webber, it’s a race against time to save Mrs. Roosevelt and remain alive.
This historical romance takes us back to simpler-yet-harder times. Simpler times when men and women respected romance and didn’t jump into relationships but gave them careful thought and consideration. Harder times because the story is set in WWII where segregation is a problem despite minority patriotism and participation in war efforts.
As a reader, you’ll be swept into a time of struggle and triumph while being wrapped up in a conspiracy to kill the president’s wife and other dastardly deeds that happen during war.
Candice Sue Patterson writes us directly into that era so perfectly that you’ll be transported in time to follow the newly appointed company of single women called the SPARS (a division of the Coast Guard), and feel like you are walking in their shoes and boots through all kinds of weather.
You’ll also feel the spark of forbidden romance and you can bet the officer is a gentleman.
All in all, this is an awesome read that I couldn’t put down and after reading it on my Kindle, I bought the hard copy as a Christmas gift for my mother-in-law, who enjoys a good read and lived through that era.
Candice Sue Patterson is a gifted writer, drawing me into the read from page one to the end.
I’m looking forward to reading more from the Heroines of World War II.
About the Author
Candice Sue Patterson studied at the Institute of Children’s Literature and is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She lives in Indiana with her husband and three sons in a restored farmhouse overtaken by books. When she’s not tending to her chickens, splitting wood, or decorating cakes, she’s working on a new story.
Candice writes Modern Vintage Romance—where the past and present collide with faith. Her debut novel, How to Charm a Beekeeper’s Heart, was a 2012 ACFW First Impressions finalist and made INSPYs Longlist for 2016.
More from Candice
The idea for Saving Mrs. Roosevelt literally came overnight. I had just finished writing a contemporary romance set in Maine, centered around a harbor town where lobstering is prevalent. My agent called me and told me about the Heroines of WWII series and asked if I’d be interested in writing a WWII novel. If so, I needed to come up with a story and proposal fast because spots were limited and filling quickly.
My mind was so consumed with research of the lobster industry that I felt I couldn’t clear my brain fast enough to come up with another story on such short notice. That’s when I started wondering how I could take the knowledge I already had and make it work for a WWII novel. I googled Maine during WWII, came across an article that mentioned the SPARs, and the idea for Saving Mrs. Roosevelt was born.
I don’t want to give too much away, but the Nancy Drew deep inside me figured out a unique way to merge lobstering with espionage.
Though the plot is purely fiction, there are some characters and events that are historically accurate that were fun to include as well. I love Maine, but I’m Hoosier born and raised, and in my SPAR research, I discovered that Dorothy C. Stratton–the woman the Coast Guard asked to direct the SPARs–was the Dean of Women at Purdue University in Indiana. She was a woman of true character, grace, and strength. I knew right away she needed a cameo in my story.
Within twenty-four hours of receiving my agent’s call, I had plotted the entire story and sent a proposal. Weeks went by, and as fall ushered in its beautiful colors, my husband surprised me with a trip to Monhegan Island, Maine. We walked the trails, ate amazing seafood, and took in the gorgeous view.
While on the island, my agent called again, this time to let me know that Barbour had contracted Saving Mrs. Roosevelt. What a special moment it was to be standing on the very shoreline where the book is set when I received the good news.
Since the book is set in Maine where the heroine works on a lobster boat with her father, I wanted to share my favorite recipe for Maine blueberry pie.
Maine Blueberry Pie
2 pie crusts
1 quart of fresh Maine blueberries
1 ½ tbsp lemon juice
Freshly grated nutmeg
¼ c light brown sugar
¼ c white sugar
¼ c flour
2 tbsp tapioca for thickening (if the berries are juicy)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Place the berries into a large bowl, add lemon juice, and toss.
Add the remaining ingredients and toss until the berries are well coated with the flour and sugars mixture.
Line the pie plate with one crust. Put the berries into the pie plate and top with a solid or lattice-top crust.
Bake for 35-40 minutes until the berries are bubbly and the crust is golden brown.