Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Great Debut -- Pockets of Promise (with GIVEAWAY)

Welcome to the Blog Tour and Giveaway for Pockets of Promise 
by Laurie Stroup Smith, coordinated by the author.

About the Book:

Title:                 Pockets of Promise Series Title:      Book #1 in The
                         Pocket Quilt Series
Author:             Laurie Stroup Smith
Publisher:         Vinspire Publishing
Release Date:  April 30, 2020
Genre:              Amish

A young Amish woman—torn between two worlds and two men—travels to Pinecraft, where she receives wisdom and guidance through secret letters tucked into the pockets of a special quilt.

Mariah Mast’s best friend Josiah Weaver has concentrated his efforts on providing for their future together, but on her eighteenth birthday, Mariah finds herself edging away from Josiah and her faith. An encounter with police, a misunderstanding of intentions, and hurt feelings compound her confusion. Her grandmother sends her to stay with an aunt in Pinecraft and gives her a pocket quilt with handwritten messages tucked inside.

Thrilled to have her help at the bed and breakfast, Aunt Birdie introduces Mariah to a group of new friends, including Luke Yoder, a young Amish man who works for his father’s construction company. Spending time with him opens up a new world for Mariah. Her grandmother’s words of wisdom offer guidance as she makes a decision that will have lasting consequences for those she loves. Will she find fulfillment in Florida? Or does her heart belong in Holmes County?

Purchase your copy of the book at the following:  
AmazonBarnes and NobleWalmartBook DepositorySmashwords, or Kobo.

My Thoughts:

Laurie Stroup Smith's debut Amish fiction novel is a great addition to the genre. Pockets of Promise has a wide range of enjoyable characters and a very engaging story. 

Mariah, the main character, struggles to find what she really wants and who she really is through her typical Amish setting in Holmes County, Ohio, some ventures into the outside English world, and a time of branching out into the more non-conventional Amish setting of Pinecraft, Florida. The connection with her grandmother through the special messages she finds in the pocket quilt is a very heartwarming and important part of her story. Following her as she learns and grows is a delightful experience.

I would highly recommend Pockets of Promise to fans of good Amish fiction. I look forward to more great reading as this series continues.

Thank you to the author for providing me a copy of this book as a part of this blog tour. I am happy to share my own thoughts in this review.

About the Author:

While writing Amish fiction and contemporary romance, Laurie Stroup Smith strives to connect readers with friends and family through her stories while inspiring her audience to serve others. She was named a Finalist in the 2017 ACFW First Impressions Contest and a Semi-Finalist in the 2018 and 2019 ACFW Genesis Contests. She has been interviewed by Loveland Magazine.

Before writing, Laurie earned a bachelor’s degree in both athletic training and exercise science and later obtained her master’s degree in health promotion and education. She now writes full time and lives with her husband and their two daughters in Cincinnati. For a week or two each summer, they enjoy discovering new adventures along the western coast of Michigan.

You can connect with Laurie through the following social media links:

Website               https://lauriestroupsmith.com/
Facebook            https://www.facebook.com/lauriestroupsmith/
Instagram            https://www.instagram.com/lauriestroupsmith/
Pinterest             https://www.pinterest.com/LaurieMSmith/
Amazon               amazon.com/author/lauriestroupsmith
Twitter                 https://twitter.com/LStroupSmith


One winner will receive a signed paperback copy of Pockets of Promise, a $10 Amazon gift card, and a handmade pocket pillow.

Visit each stop on the tour and increase your chances to win. Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight April 23, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on April 30, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US mailing addresses only. Giveaway terms and conditions can be found here.

April 24

April 27

April 28

April 29

April 30

Friday, April 10, 2020

Another Exciting visit to Promise Lodge (with a GIVEAWAY) -- Light Shines on Promise Lodge

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Charlotte Hubbard will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. (The link for the giveaway appears at the end of this post.) Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

About the Book:
For abandoned wife Annabelle Beachey, Promise Lodge is a refuge where she’s gained confidence and self-sufficiency. But she and the others are dismayed when newly arrived Bishop Clayton King claims the community is too progressive and sets out to change its ways. Worse, her husband, Phineas, returns, expecting her to give up her faith as he has. And he won’t leave Promise Lodge without her…

But little by little, Annabelle’s determination and new forthrightness make Phineas realize his mistakes—and truly hear his wife for the first time. Meanwhile, Annabelle finds herself feeling compassion—and even renewed love—for her newly humble, more caring husband. And as Bishop Clayton’s attempt to control Promise Lodge threatens everything its residents have built, Phineas and Annabelle must work together with unshakable courage to save their new home—and their opportunity for forever happiness.

My Thoughts:

If you have read any of Charlotte Hubbard's PROMISE LODGE books, you know that you are in for a treat with this 5th book in the series. The Amish community at Promise Lodge is probably not like any other you have seen or heard about, and you can never be too sure about what will happen -- except that the people there will fight for and take care of their own and welcome anyone who is willing to do the same.

Eclectic -- I'm pretty sure this term doesn't fit your typical Amish community, but you will find quite an eclectic group of people in this fictitious Missouri community. The characters are so well developed that you definitely get the sense of revisiting old friends when you pick up the next book. LIGHT SHINES ON PROMISE LODGE, like the installments before it, could probably be enjoyed as a standalone, but to get the full impact of the story you really need to read all the books in order.

Every time a new visitor walks through the door of PROMISE LODGE, there is certain to be another wrinkle thrown into things. This latest story brings a couple of new folks into the community, both of whom manage to stir things up in their own way.  There is a major twist worked into this story that I would love to tell you about . . . but there is no way I want to even give a hint of a spoiler on this one! 

If this is the last of the PROMISE LODGE series, it has certainly ended on a high note. But I would like to think that at some point in the future we might have the opportunity to visit these friends once more.

I would highly recommend LIGHT SHINES ON PROMISE LODGE to fans of great Amish fiction. Thanks to Charlotte Hubbard for providing a copy of the book. I am happy to share my own thoughts in this review. 

Read an Excerpt:

As Annabelle Beachey gazed at the happy couple standing before Bishop Monroe Burkholder to exchange their wedding vows, she fought tears. During the four months she’d spent in an apartment at Promise Lodge, she’d become good friends with the bride, Frances Lehman, and she’d acquired a lot of respect for the groom, Preacher Marlin Kurtz. The love light on their faces shone as a testament to the devotion that had grown between them during their summertime courtship—a brilliant example of how God worked out His purpose through the lives of those who kept His faith, even after they’d been widowed.

Annabelle sighed with the rightness of it all. The women around her dabbed at their eyes as Preacher Marlin repeated his vows in an endearingly confident voice, gazing at Frances as though she were the only woman in the world. Folks here were still in awe because Marlin had bought back all the furnishings Frances had consigned to an auction in May, thinking she had to sell everything to get by because her first husband hadn’t left her with much.

My husband didn’t leave me with much, either. He just left me.

About the Author:
In 1983, Charlotte Hubbard sold her first story to True Story. She wrote around 70 of those confession stories, and she’s sold more than 50 books to traditional or online publishers. A longtime resident of Missouri, she’s currently writing Amish romances set in imaginary Missouri towns for Kensington. She now lives in St. Paul, MN with her husband of 40+ years and their Border collie, Vera.

Website: https://charlottehubbard.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/charlotte.hubbard1
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/53342.Charlotte_Hubbard
BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/charlotte-hubbard

Buy Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07R8WYRZK/
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07R8WYRZK/
Amazon CA: http://www.amazon.ca/dp/B07R8WYRZK/
Amazon AU: http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B07R8WYRZK/
Apple Books: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/book/light-shines-on-promise-lodge/id1461891071
Apple Books UK: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/book/light-shines-on-promise-lodge/id1461891071
Apple Books CA: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/light-shines-on-promise-lodge/id1461891071
Apple Books AU: https://itunes.apple.com/au/book/light-shines-on-promise-lodge/id1461891071
Apple Books NZ: https://itunes.apple.com/nz/book/light-shines-on-promise-lodge/id1461891071
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/light-shines-on-promise-lodge-charlotte-hubbard/1131427032
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/light-shines-on-promise-lodge

a Rafflecopter giveaway