Friday, March 23, 2018

A Mother's Gift By Charlotte Hubbard

Charlotte Hubbard celebrates the joys and challenges of motherhood in this uplifting story, set amid the warmth and tradition of an Amish Missouri farm community.
For Leah Otto, marrying Jude Shetler is a long-held dream come true. As a young girl, she was captivated by his good looks and talent as an auctioneer. When Jude, now a widower with three children, begins to court her, Leah doesn’t hesitate. Other men may not appreciate her tomboy ways, but Jude values Leah’s practical nature and her skill with the animals she tends, and both enter the marriage with joy and optimism.

Three months later, Leah feels as if her world is coming down around her. Her twin teenage
step-daughters, Alice and Adeline, are pushing boundaries and taking far too many risks, while five-year-old Stevie deeply misses his mother. Leah, more at ease in a barn tending her goats and chickens than in a kitchen, struggles with her housekeeping duties.

Then a baby is abandoned on their doorstep, and Leah must search her soul. Caring for little Betsy fills her with renewed purpose and the strength to begin pulling her family together. With Jude’s steadfast support, Leah finds that what she once thought of as a happy ending may be something even better—the beginning of a life rich in love, faith, and unexpected blessings.

Pick up your copy here...

Charlotte Hubbard is the acclaimed author of Amish romance and fiction that evokes simpler times and draws upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi. Faith and family, farming, and food preservation are hallmarks of her lifestyle—and the foundation of all her novels. A deacon, dedicated church musician and choir member, she loves to travel, read, try new recipes, and crochet. A longtime Missourian, Charlotte now lives in St. Paul, Minnesota, with her husband and their border collie. Please visit Charlotte online at

My Thoughts...

Oh How to write this review. I loved Leah, and Jude was every women's dream man.
Now Jude's two twins girls I had a love/hate relationship through out the whole book with them. Those two girls are a mess.
The family unit in this book is so overwhelming, the forgiveness and the love is so refreshing. 
Hubbard has really out done herself with this book. It is my favorite of all of her books.
I gave this book 4.5 stars. I highly recommend this book. It would make a wonderful Mother's day gift.
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Bountiful Blessings By Susie Larson

Rest in God's Blessings as You ColorThis beautiful coloring book is for readers who want to unwind with a reminder of God's love and purpose for them. We often live our lives worried about to-do lists and responsibilities, forgetting how God feels about us and who we are in him. Because of this struggle, author Susie Larson began posting nightly blessings on Facebook to encourage her fans and friends, and since then, thousands have responded and forwarded the blessings along to others.

The left hand pages of this book contain a blessing packed with biblical promises as well as a related Scripture to point you back to God's timeless truth. The right hand pages contain beautiful, intricate illustrations for you to color that bring God's wonders into focus. 

Read, rest, and create as you soak in the wonder of God's love for you.

Pick up your coloring book here...,204,203,200_QL40_&dpSrc=srch

Susie Larson is a national speaker, talk radio host, and author of twelve books and many articles. Susie connects daily with her listeners on her two-hour live talk show, ‘Live the Promise with Susie Larson’ which airs mainly in the upper Midwest. Susie formerly co-hosted Focus on the Family’s live talk show, ‘Everyday Relationships with Dr. Greg Smalley.’ Susie’s daily blessings on Facebook reach between 500k-1 million people each week. Susie has been married to her dear husband Kevin since 1985 and together they have three wonderful sons, two beautiful daughters-in-law, and one adorable pit bull named Memphis. Susie’s passion is to see people everywhere awakened to the value of their soul, the depth of God’s love, and the height of their calling in Christ Jesus.

My Thoughts...

I love adult coloring books. I always grab one when I am stressed out.
This one is wonderful, it fits in my purse. It has scripture and a little paragraph to ponder on. It is so relaxing and the pictures are so fun, birds, lighthouses, rabbits, trees, flowers and butterflies just to name a few.
This is a 4 star coloring book. It would be a great gift to put in your best friends Easter Basket. Just saying...
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.

Beneath A Prairie Moon By Kim Vogel Sawyer GIVEAWAY!

Readers rabid for the sweet historical romances of Tracie Peterson and Tamara Alexander will flock to best-selling author Kim Vogel Sawyer's prairie-set heartwarmer of high society cast-off and the western town that welcomes her.Abigail Brantley grew up in affluence and knows exactly how to behave in high society. But when she is cast from the social registers due to her father's illegal dealings, she finds herself forced into a role she never imagined: tutoring rough Kansas ranchers in the subjects of manners and morals so they can "marry up" with their mail-order brides. Mack Cleveland, whose father was swindled by a mail-order bride, wants no part of the scheme to bring Eastern women to Spiveyville, Kansas, and he's put off by the snooty airs and fastidious behavior of the "little city gal" in their midst. But as time goes by, his heart goes out to the teacher who tries so diligently to smooth the rough edges from the down-to-earth men. How can he teach her that perfection won't bring happiness?

Pick up your copy here...

Award-winning, bestselling author Kim Vogel Sawyer is a wife, mother, gramma, chocolate-lover, cat-petter, and--most importantly--a daughter of the King! With more than 1.5 million books in print in seven different languages, Kim enjoys a full-time writing and speaking ministry. Her "gentle stories of hope" are loved by readers and reviewers alike. Kim and her retired military husband, Don, reside on the plains of Kansas, the setting for many of her novels.

Welcome Kim...

1. Tell us about your new novel, Beneath a Prairie Moon, and
how the idea for it came about.
Several years ago I wrote a book called A Hopeful Heart which
featured women from the east coming to a Kansas herdsman
school to learn the skills necessary to become ranchersor
farmerswives. Readers enjoyed the humor of watching these
Easterners try to brand cattle, cook for a whole passel of men,
or take care of chickens. Over the years, I received several
requests for another mail-order bride type story, so I was always
contemplating it. Then I thought, the last book taught the
women how to be good wives; why not write one about the
ranchers learning to be good husbands? And Beneath a Prairie
Moon came to life in my imagination.

2. Why do you believe readers are so fascinated with mail-

order bride stories?

I think its the unknown. When you take two people who are
strangers to each other, put them into a situation where they
either learn to get along or be miserable, its intriguing to see
how that plays out. Were encouraged as Christians to choose to
show Christs love to others, and a mail-order story allows that
basic biblical precept to come alive on the page.
3. The main character, Abigail Grant, finds her life turned
upside down when her father is imprisoned for illegal
business dealings. How does her story speak to Gods plans
for each of us when things dont turn out the way we
There as so many things I appreciate about God, but His ability
to make beauty out of ashes is de6nitely close to the top of the
list. How many times have we felt as if our happiness was
ending, only to find ourselves on the precipice of a brand new
and even brighter opportunity for joy? The thing is, God doesnt
see the way we do, with blinders on. He sees how yesterday,
today, tomorrow, and every day of our lives work together, and
He uses each of our days to weave the most glorious plans for
His children. Of course, we have to be willing to let go of some
things so our hands are open to receive the greater gift He
wants to bestow. I think that was Abigails biggest challenge: to
release the known and receive what could be.
4. What message do you hope your readers will take away
from Beneath a Prairie Moon?
I always hope readers will recognize there is no greater hope
than the one that comes from a relationship with God through
His Son Jesus. But speci6c to this story, I hope readers will
perhaps open themselves up to seeing others through Jesus
eyes. Abigail needed to do this for the townsfolk, and the
townsfolk needed to do this for Abigail. When we look (and love)
through Him instead of relying on our human failings, hearts
5. What can you tell us about what you are working on next?
Next out of the chute is a contemporary womens fiction story
featuring an Old Order Mennonite woman named Marty and her
lifelong friend, Brooke, who was raised by an agnostic mother.
Very different women, yet bound by an abiding friendship that
faces several challenges when they come together on a special
project, rebuilding a Kansas ghost town.

My Thoughts...

As with all of Sawyers books this a must read. You are going to enjoy every page of his one.
Miss. Grant hold a special place in my heart. You have to read the book to find out why.
There are a few twists, I 'm sure you are going to enjoy.
I gave this book 4 stars. I hope you will check it out.
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

High Cotton By Debby Mayne

Some families are filled with so much love they can't help but drive each other crazy.

Shay Henke has mixed feelings about going to her family's next reunion. On the one hand, she'll get to see everyone in her mama's family--folks she loves unconditionally. On the other hand, she knows there'll be more drama than you can shake a stick at.

The days leading up to the event bring one surprise after another. First Shay must deal with her sister-in-law's deep, dark secret. Then she has to contend with the childish ways of her business-mogul twin cousins. And when her high school crush wants to be her date to the reunions . . . well, it may have been a dream come true for Shay's teen self, but the woman she's become doesn't know what to make of this.

Shay's contentment is challenged, and she's determined to shake things up a bit. But will she find the excitement she's looking for, or will Shay realize she prefers her quiet predictable life? One thing is certain: Life in the Bucklin family is never boring.

Pick up your copy here...

Debby Mayne is the author of more than 40 novels and novellas that have received the "Top Pick" award from Romantic Times Magazine and been among the "Top 10 Favorites" in the Heartsong Presents book club. She writes family and faith-based romances, cozy mysteries, and women's fiction. She has also written more than 1,000 short stories and articles as well as dozens of devotions for busy women. She has worked as managing editor of a national health publication, product information writer for a TV retailer, creative writing instructor, and copy editor and proofreader for several book publishers. She is currently an etiquette writer for The Spruce, one of the DotDash (formerly companies.

Debby grew up in a military family, which meant moving every few years throughout her childhood. Debby was born in Alaska, and she has lived in Mississippi, Tennessee, Oregon, Florida, Hawaii, and Japan. Her parents were both from the Deep South, so she enjoys featuring characters with southern drawls, plenty of down-home cooking, and folks with quirky mannerisms.

She and her husband currently live in the Charleston, South Carolina, area. To learn more about Debby:
Website -
Facebook -
Twitter -     

My Thoughts...

Sweet tea and a southern family reunion. This book was not what I expected, I loved the whole story. All five of the main characters brought something different and they all felt like family, even the ones that I want to knock up side the head.
You are going to want to grab a copy of this fun, light hearted read.
I am so excited that this is a series and we are going back to the family reunion again this fall.  I can't wait.
I gave this book 4 stars. I recommend getting your copy right away and getting to know the Bucklin family.
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

If I live By Terri Blackstock

Casey Cox is still on the run after being indicted for murder. The hunt that began with her bloody footprints escalates, and she’s running out of places to hide. Her face is all over the news, and her disguises are no longer enough. It’s only a matter of time before someone recognizes her.
Dylan Roberts, the investigator who once hunted her, is now her only hope. Terrifying attempts on Dylan’s life could force Casey out of hiding. The clock is ticking on both their lives, but exposing the real killers is more complicated than they knew. Amassing the evidence to convict their enemies draws Dylan and Casey together, but their relationship has consequences. Will one life have to be sacrificed to protect the other?
With If I Live, Terri Blackstock takes us on one more heart-stopping chase in the sensational conclusion to the If I Run series.

Pick up your copy here...

Terri Blackstock is a New York Times best-seller, with over six million copies sold worldwide. She has had over twenty-five years of success as a novelist. Terri spent the first twelve years of her life traveling in an Air Force family. She lived in nine states and attended the first four years of school in The Netherlands. Because she was a perpetual "new kid," her imagination became her closest friend. That, she believes, was the biggest factor in her becoming a novelist. She sold her first novel at the age of twenty-five, and has had a successful career ever since.

In 1994 Terri was writing for publishers such as HarperCollins, Harlequin, Dell and Silhouette, when a spiritual awakening drew her into the Christian market. As she was praying about her transition, she went on a cruise and noticed that almost everyone on the boat (including her) had a John Grisham novel. It occurred to her that some of Grisham's readers were Christians, and that if she wrote a fast-paced thriller with an added faith element, she might just find her niche. As God would have it, Christian publishers were showing interest in the suspense genre, so she quickly sold a four-book series to Zondervan. Since that time, she's written over thirty Christian titles, most of them suspense novels.

Besides entertaining her readers, Terri tackles issues that she hopes will change lives. Her recent book, Predator, was inspired by her experiences on Facebook and Twitter, and her concern that people posted too much personal information about themselves. The book deals with an online predator who uses social networks as his playground. She hopes the book will change readers' online habits. Her New York Times best-seller, Intervention, was inspired by her own personal struggles with a daughter on drugs. In the book, a mother hires an interventionist for her drug-addicted daughter. But on the way to treatment, the interventionist is murdered, and the daughter disappears. Barbara, the mother, sets out to search for her daughter. Terri modeled Barbara after herself, and poured many of her own emotions and experiences into that character. As a result, many families experiencing drug addiction have written to thank her for telling their story and giving them hope.

Other recent books include her stand-alone novel Shadow in Serenity, and Vicious Cycle (Book 2 in her Intervention Series). She's also known for popular series such as the Restoration Series, the Cape Refuge Series, the Newpointe 911 Series, and the SunCoast Chronicles series.

Terri has appeared on national television programs such as "The 700 Club" and "Home Life," and has been a guest on numerous radio programs across the country. The story of her personal journey appears in books such as Touched By the Savior by Mike Yorkey, True Stories of Answered Prayer by Mike Nappa, Faces of Faith by John Hanna, and I Saw Him In Your Eyes by Ace Collins.

My Thoughts...

Warning: You will not put this book down once you start reading it.
You are taken on a journey and it's not one you will soon forget.
It was the best of the three If I Run series.
Blackstock always knows how to pull you in and make you hold on until the very end.
I'm not going to give anything away, I will just let you know that it's a must read.
This is a 4.5 star book and I HIGHLY recommend the whole series.
 The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

AS Bright As Heaven By Susan Meissner

From the acclaimed author of Secrets of a Charmed Life and A Bridge Across the Ocean comes a new novel set in Philadelphia during the Spanish flu epidemic of 1918, which tells the story of a family reborn through loss and love.In 1918, Philadelphia was a city teeming with promise. Even as its young men went off to fight in the Great War, there were opportunities for a fresh start on its cobblestone streets. Into this bustling town, came Pauline Bright and her husband, filled with hope that they could now give their three daughters--Evelyn, Maggie, and Willa--a chance at a better life.

But just months after they arrive, the Spanish Flu reaches the shores of America. As the pandemic claims more than twelve thousand victims in their adopted city, they find their lives left with a world that looks nothing like the one they knew. But even as they lose loved ones, they take in a baby orphaned by the disease who becomes their single source of hope. Amidst the tragedy and challenges, they learn what they cannot live without--and what they are willing to do about it.

As Bright as Heaven is the compelling story of a mother and her daughters who find themselves in a harsh world not of their making, which will either crush their resolve to survive or purify it.

Pick up your copy here...

I cannot remember a time when I wasn't driven to write. I attribute this passion to a creative God and to parents who love books and more particularly to a dad who majored in English and passed on a passion for writing.

I was born in 1961 in San Diego, California, and am the second of three daughters. I spent my very average childhood in just two houses. I attended Point Loma College in San Diego, majoring in education, but I would have been smarter to major in English with a concentration in writing. The advice I give now to anyone wondering what to major in is follow your heart and choose a vocation you are already in love with.

I'm happy and humbled to say that I've had 17 books published in the last dozen years, including The Shape of Mercy, which was named one of the 100 Best Books in 2008 by Publishers Weekly, and the ECPA’s Fiction Book of the Year, a Carol Award winner, and a RITA finalist. I teach at writers' conferences from time to time and I've a background in community journalism.

I'm also a pastor’s wife and a mother of four young adults. When I'm not at work on a new novel, I write small group curriculum for my San Diego church. Visit me at my website: http// on Twitter at @SusanMeissner or at

My Thoughts...

I was not sure how I would feel about this book. But oh all of the emotions that I felt.
I was sucked in and never let go until the very end of the story.
I lived in the pages with the family, I was so captivated by the whole Spanish flu and the voices of the families. 
I highly recommend this book. I gave it 4 stars and I can't wait to share it with my friends.
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

The Heart Between Us By Lindsay Harrel

Megan Jacobs always wished for a different heart. Her entire childhood was spent in and out of hospitals, sitting on the sidelines while her twin sister Crystal played all the sports, got all the guys, and had all the fun. But even a heart transplant three years ago wasn’t enough to propel Megan’s life forward. She’s still working as a library aide and living with her parents in her small Minnesota hometown, dreaming of the adventure she plans to take “once she’s well enough.” Meanwhile, her sister is a successful architect with a handsome husband and the perfect life—or so Megan thinks.
When her heart donor’s parents give Megan their teenage daughter’s journal—complete with an unfulfilled bucket list—Megan connects with the girl she meets between the pages and is inspired to venture out and check off each item. Caleb—a friend from her years in and out of the hospital—reenters her life and pushes her to find the courage to take the leap and begin her journey. She’s thrown for a loop when Crystal offers to join her for reasons of her own, but she welcomes the company and the opportunity to mend their tenuous relationship.
As Megan and Crystal check items off the bucket list, Megan fights the fears that have been instilled in her after a lifetime of illness. She must choose between safety and adventure and learn to embrace the heart she’s been given so that she can finally share it with the people she loves most.

Pick Up your copy here...

Lindsay Harrel is a lifelong book nerd with a B.A. in journalism and M.A. in English. She lives in Arizona with her young family and two golden retrievers in serious need of training. Lindsay has held a variety of jobs, including curriculum editor for two universities, medical and business writer, and copywriter for a digital marketing agency. Now she juggles stay-at-home mommyhood with working freelance jobs, teaching college English courses online, and—of course—writing novels.

When she actually has time to do other things, she loves to sing, read, and sip passion iced teas from Starbucks. She loves to watch God work in ordinary lives to create something extraordinary, and she writes to bring hope to those who may have lost it along the way. Connect with her at and any other place she hangs out online, including Facebook and Twitter.

My Thoughts...

This a book with some heart.  I loved how Harrel writes with so much heart and she has relationships down to a science. I love how she made this book about family and relationships and oh so important communication.  You are going to love it from beginning to end.
In this book you are going to get to travel, that's always a plus in my opinion. You will go to From Rome to Australia to Greece to Peru. Now you know you want to dive in to this book after hearing that!
I gave this book 4 stars and I recommend it.
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher for review. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are our own.