WhiteFire Scavenger Hunt Stop #8!!!

WhiteFire Scavenger Hunt Stop #8

Welcome to the WhiteFire Publishing Scavenger Hunt! If you’ve just discovered the hunt, be sure to go back to stop #1 and collect all the clues in order. Once you have them all, you’ll have uncovered a secret message. Turn that in at the final stop for a chance to win one of THREE amazing prize packages! (Oh. My. Goodness! Those prize packages are the dream, my friends!!)

A few things to note:

~ The Hunt begins at Roseanna White’s site

~ Take your time! You have all weekend to complete the Hunt—entries will be counted until Monday June 26—so have fun reading all the posts along the way and getting to know each author.

~ Lots of extra prizes! Many of the authors are featuring unique giveaways as well, for even more chances to win!

~ Submit your entry for the grand prizes back at Roseanna White’s blog.

The Story Behind the Story ~

Hi everyone! *waves awkwardly* I'm Joy. I'm an awkward bookworm, purple fanatic, and Gilmore Girls groupie. I'd like to share a little about the story behind the story of my debut novel, Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations. One of the key ingredients to this story is trust in God, something I excel at. Not.

When I started writing this story, I was very single. I tended to binge-watch Say Yes to the Dress, and fret about my lack of love life. And I loved this guy. We’ll call him “Luke.” And Luke cared about me, too. Had for years. But we had never pursued it because we went to a small Christian school where dating was a capital offense. The unofficial plan was that we would pursue a relationship once we had both graduated. That day came, went, and many months flew from the pages of the calendar. I thought this was God’s plan, but nothing was happening. I had a lot of those “God, come on!” moments. One day I started venting my frustration writing, and Izze, my main character, started chattering in my head. I’d always been obsessed with weddings, and the idea of a single woman in the wedding business who wanted to get married and was fed up with the leading man seemed to be right up my emotional alley.

I started and stopped and rewrote this story many, many times. During one of the “stopped” phases, this guy FINALLY asked me out. But it was really awkward and weird. However, I was still sure this was just a dead squirrel on the path to Happily Ever After.

Three days later, Luke said we should just be friends.

Naturally, I binge-ate a lot of chocolate.

What followed was a particularly confusing and painful season for me. God and I may have exchanged some angry words… Okay, they were my angry words. But the more I turned to God, the more He whispered this message to my heart of hearts: I needed to trust Him.

This was SOOO not easy, especially when Luke started volunteering at the youth group where I was a youth leader, so I had to see him even more. I tried bargaining like, “God, if I trust you, then You need to do this for me.” Shocker, but that didn’t work. I just needed to trust God and put Him first in my life. He would sort out the details. And He showed me again and again that He was – and is – trustworthy.

Today, that guy and I are married. Four years in August, and we have a beautiful little girl.

I don’t regret our separation. In fact, I’m actually glad it happened because it taught me to rely on God in a way I never had before. My husband went through a similar journey with God, and I believe we are stronger together because we learned to trust God when we were apart.

When people read Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations, I hope they laugh a lot and enjoy Izze and Miles’ story. But most importantly, I hope they see that they can trust God with their hearts. Because He has the very best in store for them. He loves to give us beauty for ashes.

Isabel “Izze” Vez, bridal consultant extraordinaire, has been helping brides find The Dress for years. She loves nothing more than helping make wedding dreams come true…but sometimes the happy endings grate on her. How many times can a girl discover someone else’s gown without dreaming of the day it’ll be her turn to wear one?

When James Miles Clayton walks into her life, he represents everything Izze can’t handle: change. He’s determined to bring the Ever After Bridal Boutique into the black…and to prove to Izze that she should give him a chance.

But if there’s anything Izze handles worse than change, it’s trust. She may have a few issues—fine, she knows she does. But will they keep getting in the way of any chance of her own Happily Ever After? She wants to trust God to give her those dreams of love and lace, but that’s going to require some…minor alterations.

Here's the Scoop on Stop #8 ~

You can order my book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Books-A-Million!

Clue to Write Down: AND if you want the TRUTH, then you'd better read this sentence twice. Hehehe;-)  Yes, the clue is "and truth,".

Be sure to check out Stop #9 with June Foster!

Need the full list of stops?

Roseanna M. White
April McGowan

Cara Luecht
Christine Lindsay
Debra Marvin
Dina Sleiman
Gail Kittleson
Joy Palmer
June Foster
Melody Carlson (hosted)
Nelson Hannah
Rachelle Rea Cobb
Sara Goff
Susie Finkbeiner
Susanne Dietze
Suzie Johnson  

 All finished? Submit Your Entries!

But wait, there's more! Now it's time for my giveaway!

 

Bonus Giveaway Rules, Info, and Such ~

There will be two winners! Yay! :)

>>> US Giveaway ~ 1 Signed copy of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations, a $20.00 Gift Card, an Oreo Chocolate Candy Bar, a Hershey's Cookie Layer Crunch Vanilla Crème Bar, and a Bag of Ghirardelli's Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Squares!

*Disclaimer ~ The chocolates do contain various allergens. The recipient is responsible for their own health concerning the chocolates.*

>>> International Giveaway ~ 1 eBook Copy of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations!

My giveaway will run from today, Thursday, June 22nd, through Monday, June 26th.

Please enter using the handy Rafflecopter ~

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you for hanging out with me today, and I hope you have an awesomely fun time hanging out with the other wonderful WhiteFire authors! And as Effie Trinket might say, may the giveaway odds be ever in your favor! ;-)

Blessings and hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer

V. Joy Palmer is an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions. She is a youth leader at her church, and loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens. When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.

V. Joy Palmer is an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions. She is a youth leader at her church, and loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens. When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.

The Sound of Emeralds Birthday Blog Tour - and GIVEAWAY!!!

Hey guys!!! Welcome to The Sound of Emeralds Birthday Blog Tour! I’m so excited to be posting today about Rachelle Rea Cobb’s third installment in the Steadfast Love Series, an inspirational historical romance set during the 16th century!

Rachelle is also the author of The Sound of Diamonds and The Sound of Silver, the first two book in the series. She has also written Write Well, a guide for writers! Last summer, she married a man with the same first name as the hero of the Steadfast Love Series! (Cue the happy sighs here.)Rachelle's Steadfast Love Series is published with WhiteFire Publishing. (Rachelle and I are the WhiteFire Babies.) I’m super excited to be joining in this blog tour, so I'm just going to gab and gab about The Sound of Emeralds and spread the news about the rocking giveaway Rachelle is hosting — make sure you enter using the Rafflecopter form to win signed copies of all three books!

About The Sound of Emeralds...

What once was blazing hatred has turned to lasting love, but could the union of a wild heart with that of a lady ever result in more than heartache?

With the help of an old friend with uncertain loyalties, Dirk inches ever closer to clearing his name. Gwyneth throws her faith into good tidings and the promise of a future as a family. But an old evil comes to call, just as tragedy rips apart a fledgling truce. Enemies from the past and grief for the future threaten to tear asunder what God had brought together...

Find The Sound of Emeralds on Amazon, Kindle, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, and Goodreads!

And if you want to learn about the other books in the Steadfast Love Series...

About the Steadfast Love Series ~

In 16th-century Europe, the Reformation rages between Protestants and Catholics. Gwyneth, half-Dutch, flees from England to Holland to escape the man who murdered her parents. When he follows her there and insists he came to rescue her, will she trust this man called Dirk? When tragedy strikes, will their steadfast love erode?

The Sound of Diamonds ~

Her only chance of getting home is trusting the man she hates.

With the protestant Elizabeth on the throne of England and her family in shambles, Catholic maiden Gwyneth seeks refuge in the Low Countries of Holland, hoping to soothe her aching soul. But when the Iconoclastic Fury descends and bloodshed overtakes her haven, she has no choice but to trust the rogue who arrives, promising to see her safely home to her uncle's castle. She doesn't dare to trust him...and yet doesn't dare to refuse her one chance to preserve her own life and those of the nuns she rescues from the burning convent.

Dirk Godfrey is determined to restore his honor at whatever cost. Running from a tortured past, Dirk knows he has only one chance at redemption, and it lies with the lovely Gwyneth, who hates him for the crimes she thinks he committed. He must see her to safety, prove to the world that he is innocent, prove that her poor eyesight is not the only thing that has blinded her but what is he to do when those goals clash?

The home Gwyneth knew is not what she once thought. When a dark secret and a twisted plot for power collide in a castle masquerading as a haven, the saint and the sinner must either dare to hold to hope...or be overcome.

The Sound of Silver ~

The stalwart saint, fighting for faith...the redeemed rebel, fighting for honor.

After Dirk rescues Gwyneth from the Iconoclastic Fury, she discovers that faith is sometimes fragile and hope is not as easy as it may seem. Now truly orphaned yet not alone, Gwyneth continues her quest to learn more about the love of God preached by Protestants she once distrusted.

Dirk's quest is to prevent his sullied name from staining hers. Will his choice to protect her prove the undoing of her first faltering steps toward a Father God? Once separated, will Dirk and Gwyneth's searching hearts ever sing the same song?

I know you are all chomping at the bit, frantically logging into Amazon, and clicking ORDER NOW after reading all that. And you should be. ; ) Now, lets get to know Rachelle a little better.

About the Author ~ 

Times gone by snatch Rachelle Rea Cobb close, so she reads and writes about years long ago -- her passions include the Reformation, Revolutions, and romance. Rachelle wrote the Steadfast Love Series during college. Five months after she graduated, she signed a three-book deal with her dream publisher, WhiteFire. She's a homeschool grad, Oreo addict, and plots her novels while driving around her dream car, a pick-up truck. In June 2016, she married a man with the same name as her fictional hero, and they live happily ever after in Small Town, South. She is also the author of Write Well, a guide for writers, which released on March 4th!

Connect with Rachelle on her Website, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Amazon Author Page, and Goodreads.

INTERVIEW ~  

1. When and where did you first get the idea for the Steadfast Love Series?

Rachelle: A song I was listening to on the radio inspired the title of the first book. So I wrote Diamonds, but when I finished it, I realized to my great frustration that the characters weren't done with their story, even though I had been quite adamant that I would write a stand-alone novel. But the story wasn't finished, so I kept writing.

 Me: That's amazing!!! I love how a song inspired this beautiful saga!

2. Readers often pick out favorite quotes from a novel. Do you have a favorite of your own?

Rachelle: Yes! In fact, my friend Mindy, a calligrapher, even created a beautiful piece of art from one of my favorite quotes: "Within the pages of books one's heart can be revealed."

Me: That right there is going to be my new life motto. LOVE IT!

3. Can you tell us what first drew you to writing Inspirational Historical Romance?

Rachelle: My first exposure to the genre came when I read Heartsong Presents novels when I was twelve. Those small books introduced me to how much I believe in the power of story, especially love stories set in times gone by.

Me: I love hearing about the stories that shape the writers - and people - we become! It's amazing!

4. I saw on your website that you also write reviews, articles, and offer editing services. What's one of your favorite things beyond writing novels that you enjoy?

Rachelle: Editing is such fun! I daresay I enjoy editing a page full of my own (or others'!) words just as much as I enjoy splashing words onto a blank page. I recently released my first nonfiction book, Write Well, which is a short eBook designed as a guide for writers!

Me: Everyone, Write Well is one of the best writing guides I have ever read. Instead of wanting to put my head through a wall, I chuckled while reading it. So I definitely recommend Rachelle as a freelance editor. Not that I'm being pushy or anything. ; )

Thank you for talking with us, Rachelle! Now it's time for the GIVEAWAY!

GIVEAWAY INFO, RULES, AND SUCH ~

Enter using the Rafflecopter form below to win signed copies of ALL THREE of Rachelle's novels. The whole series, signed!!! Be still my nerd girl heart!

International friends, this giveaway is open to continental U.S. addresses only (sorry!). But do still enter, because one international winner will also be chosen to receive all three eBooks. YAY!

Enter using the handy Rafflecopter here ~

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I hope you had as much fun as I did today! See you next time, and God bless you guys!!!

Hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer

Review of Redeeming Grace by Jill Eileen Smith

 

From the Back Cover:

One devoted woman is about to discover the power of love.

When famine visits Bethlehem, some hold out home for rain, while Naomi and her family make a long Journey to Moab in search of greener pastures. The harvest there is plentiful, and for a time it appears the Lord is blessing them. But when calamities strike, one after another, Naomi is left alone in a foreign land with only her widowed daughters-in-law for comfort.

Downhearted and destitute, Naomi is determined to return to Bethlehem alone. But her daughter-in-law Ruth refuses to leave her side. Despite the fact that she and Naomi will almost certainly live out their days in widowhood and poverty, Ruth holds out hope for a better future . . . and maybe even a second chance at love.

My Thoughts:

Oh, friends. Redeeming Grace is such a sweet story. The title so aptly portrays it. <3

Now, if you're looking for a book with a shocking plot twist where everybody dies, then you should know that this is not that kind of story. ; )

Not that there isn't death, loss, struggle, and heartache. There certainly is! But there is also triumph, love, redemption, mercy, beauty, and grace.

Ruth, Naomi, and Boaz are the points of view in the story. I thought they all had such excellent character development! I really understood them, their fears and joys. I knew what hurdles they needed to overcome. I knew what they were fighting for, and I cheered for them. (And maybe cried for them, too...ahem.)

It's always good to remember that Biblical Fiction is just that. It's fiction. It may be based off of real people, and the authors try to remain true to the Bible and historical research, but it's still fiction. Biblical Fiction is a wonderful way to glimpse the truth nuggets God has show other people. I love that. <3 I always recommend reading the Author's Note at the end of the book first.

Four Stars! Beautiful story! Redeeming Grace is the third book in Jill Eileen Smith's Daughter's of the Promised Land Series. The Crimson Cord and The Prophetess are the first two (amazing) books, but you can read them out of order without banging your head into a wall. ; )

I received a copy of Redeeming Grace by Jill Eileen Smith from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. All opinions expressed are my own.

See you next time, and God bless you guys!!!

Hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer

Review of Unfolding by Jonathan Friesen



Description:

Jonah wishes he could get the girl, but he’s an outcast and she’s the most perfect girl he knows.

And their futures seemed destined to fork apart: Jonah’s physical condition is debilitating, and epileptic seizures fill his life with frustration. Whereas Stormi is seemingly carefree, and navigates life by sensing things before they happen. And her most recent premonition is urging her to leave town.

When Stormi begs Jonah for help, he finds himself swept into a dark mystery his small town has been keeping for years. And the answers Stormi needs about her own past could possibly destroy everything Jonah has ever known—including his growing relationship with Stormi herself.

My thoughts:

Wow. Just wow.

This book kept me up very, very late. And I have a baby. Staying up all night reading is not a luxury I can afford to take. However, I could not stop reading Unfolding!

Ok, so this is not a light, easy-breezy story. This is an intense, edge of your seat, flinching due to every small noise kind of story. But what do you expect with a small town riddled with secrets and a secret society and...I'd better not say that part. ;) The writing voice is different, yet so unique. And I absolutely adored Jonah! His perspective and voice would have been make or break it to the story. Jonah sounded like a real dude. ;) Also, speaking as someone who's had a lot of involvement with disable adults, I found his feelings regarding his disabilities to be realistic based on what I've seen. However, I am by no means an expert.

Fans of paranormal, mysterious, secret society YA and/or of Ted Dekker will love Unfolding by Jonathan Friesen. Seriously. You will want to buy this book immediately.

What are you waiting for?

I received a copy of Unfolding by Jonathan Friesen published by Blink from BookLook Bloggers. All opinions expressed are my own.

God bless you guys, and I'll see you next time!

Hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer

Review of An Uncommon Courtship by Kristi Ann Hunter




From the Back Cover:

Lord Trent Hawthorne couldn't be happier he is not the duke in the family. Free to manage his small estate and take his time discovering the life he wants to lead, he has grand plans of someday wooing and falling in love with the woman of his choice. When he finds himself honor bound to marry a woman he barely knows, his dream of a loving marriage like his parents' seems lost forever.

Life for Lady Adelaide Bell was easier when she hid in her older sister's shadow--which worked until her sister got married. But even with her socially ambitious mother's focus entirely on her, the last thing she expected was a marriage of convenience before she's been introduced to society.

With nothing going as expected, can Trent and Adelaide's marriage of obligation survive their own missteps and the pressures of London society to grow into a true meeting of hearts and minds?

My Thoughts:

This was such a sweet, delightful story!

 Kristi Ann Hunter has crafted a story set in the Regency period that remains true to the times, yet is delightfully quirky. This family is a riot!

Trent struck me as afraid of commitment, which was hysterical given that he suddenly found himself married. I loved seeing him ask and learn the answers to marital bliss. Adelaide proved to be sweet. She was very shy and had been neglected by her family to horrendous lengths, so it was great to see her finally stand up for herself!

The story definitely picked up for me once more of Trent's family got involved. There were times that I was frustrated with Trent and Adelaide, but let's be honest, when do we handle everything perfectly? So I really, really loved that the author wrote flawed characters. We are not always going to like every decision every character makes in every book. I consider it a mark of a good author when the characters make me feel real emotions.

This story fell somewhere between 3.5 and 4 stars for me. I'm honestly not sure which! LOL. I will confess, this was my first book by Kristi Ann Hunter. However, it won't be my last book by her! An Uncommon Courtship is book three in the Hawthorne House Series. I'm very much looking forward to the next book in the series!

I received a copy of An Uncommon Courtship by Kristi Ann Hunter from Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group. All opinions expressed are my own.

God bless you guys! See you next time!

 Hugs!

~V. Joy Palmer