Friday, March 29, 2024

Resurrection Sunday

 Happy Easter!!!

Sunday is a very important day to me. I spend a while studying the cross and resurrection in the Bible from all four gospels and spend some time in prayer, thanking God for what he has done for me.

Without his death, I wouldn't be assured of my salvation. I'm glad I found God when I was a teenager. I couldn't living my life without him.

Now at my house, I have never done the whole Easter basket and hunting for eggs with my boys. My husband and I want them to focus on Christ and what he did for us. On Monday, when the candy goes on clearance is when I will give the boys a couple of dollars apiece, and they can pick out some candy.

I still can't wrap my mind around what a bunny delivering eggs has to do with the Lord's sacrifice.

Anyways, Happy Easter!!

Happy Resurrection Day!!!

Monday, March 25, 2024

Lynn H. Blackburn: Never Fall Again

By Kelly Bridgewater

Landry Hutton has spent three years rebuilding her life behind the secure gates of The Haven, an exclusive resort on the outskirts of Gossamer Falls, North Carolina. As the artist-in-residence, and with her pottery prized by The Haven's guests, Landry is finally ready to settle in permanently. She wants to give her daughter, Eliza, a safe home to grow up in and hires former Marine Callum Shaw to handle the construction.

Cal grew up in Gossamer Falls and always knew he would someday join his family's business. He longs for a family of his own but has almost given up on that ever happening. Landry is funny, gifted, and everything Cal could ever want in a partner, but he vows to keep his distance. Landry has a daughter and a past. Cal has been down that road before and barely survived when the woman he loved left, taking her two sons with her. He can't bear to lose like that again.

Before construction on the house can begin, Landry's pottery is destroyed in a suspicious fire. It soon becomes clear that Landry and Eliza are in grave danger--but because of whom? But, after losing one relationship, he is hesitant to try again.


My Thoughts:

Never Fall Again by Lynn H. Blackburn does a wonderful job of crafting a family saga filled with a number of people that will be able to be written into upcoming books. The books is labeled as a romantic suspense novel. However, it is not a romantic suspense novel. I would label this as a Women’s Fiction novel. Readers will be at 10% into the book before the first big climactic moment will occur. Then another one does not occur until about 50%, then we have at 85% the final showdown. I never felt like the main character Landry Hutton’s life was in danger. Never once did a bullet fly at her. She was not chased off the road. She was not caught in a burning building. The two damages that did happen she was not around. The story is more about the budding romance and learning to trust each other between Cal and Landry. Readers will see Cal’s family as they decide to accept Landry and her daughter. Readers will also learn what happened in Landry’s and Cal’s past. Overall, Never Fall Again by Lynn H. Blackburn, in my humble opinion, was a disappointment as a romantic suspense novel. If it was labeled as a Women’s fiction, the readers would not expect much excitement and danger for their characters, which is what this novel delivered.

I received a complimentary copy of Never Fall Again by Lynn H. Blackburn from Revell Publishing, but the opinions stated are all my own.

My Rating:  2.5  out of 5 stars

Purchase Never Fall Again

Friday, March 22, 2024

Crucified with Christ

 By Kelly Bridgewater 

Now the men who held Jesus mocked Him and beat Him. And having blindfolded Him, they struck Him on the face and asked Him, saying, 'Prophesy! Who is the one who struck you?' And many other things they blasphemously spoke against Him." Luke 22: 63-65

"Then he questioned Him with many words, but He answered him nothing. And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused Him. Then Herod, with his men of war, treated Him with contempt and mocked Him, arrayed Him in a gorgeous robe, and sent Him back to Pilate." Luke 23: 9-11

"There were also two others, criminals, led with Him to be put to death. And when they had come to the place called Calvary, there they crucified Him and the criminals, one on the right hand and the other on the left.  . . And they divided His garments and cast lost. And the people stood looking on. 

But even the rulers with them sneered, saying, 'He saved others; let Him save Himself if He is the Christ, the chosen of God.' The soldiers also mocked Him, coming and offering Him sour wine and saying, 'If you are the King of the Jews, save Yourself.'

And an inscription also was written over Him in letters of Greek, Latin, and Hebrew.

THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS." Luke 23: 32- 38

"Now it was about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. Then the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was torn in two. And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, 'Father, into Your hands I commit my Spirit.' Having said this, He breathed His last." Luke 23: 44-46

What a horrible scene! What a blessing this will turn into. I hope you remember all the pain and torture our Lord and Savior endured so we could be with him.

Monday, March 18, 2024

Karen Witemeyer: If the Boot Fits

By Kelly Bridgewater


About the Book

Book: If the Boot Fits

Author: Karen Witemeyer

Genre: Historical Romance

Release Date: March 12, 2024

Determined to prove that cattle king Eli Dearing has no justification for evicting his stepmother and half brothers, Asher Ellis uses the cover of a fancy ball to break into the Three Cedars ranch house to search for proof of wrongdoing. On the verge of discovery, he flees, but a boy's cry compels him to make a daring rescue.

Spunky and independent, Samantha Dearing balks when she learns the ball her father is hosting in her honor is nothing more than a matrimonial ambush. Taking a break from her unwanted suitors, Samantha spots a thief fleeing her home. When the stranger ends up saving her brother's life, she hides the only clue to his identity left behind--his boot--and resolves to find him herself.

But when Samantha encounters the older brother of a student she tutors, all thoughts of the bootless mystery man vanish. And although Asher tries to keep his distance from Samantha for reasons of his own, a series of suspicious accidents befall her, and his protective instincts flare, no matter the cost to their future.

This Western reimagining of the classic Cinderella
fairy tale is an enchanting story of courage, family, and the power of true love.


My Thoughts:

If the Boot Fits by Karen Witemeyer is a unique perspective on Cinderella, the widely-known fairy tale. This time around, the Cinderella character centers around a male character. Not that he is mistreated by his step-mother, he actually has a loving mother and two loving younger brothers. The story features his missing boot and how brave and gentle his spirit is. While similarly, the heroine, is smart, humble, and wanting the best for others. She is willing to sacrifice her time and money to help others in need. Of course, the romance between the hero and heroine develop as the story comes to its climactic moment. The plot has a mystery element to it, which I actually enjoyed. More historical romance novels are featuring mystery elements to the plot. I guess as a way to capture the attention of readers like me who adore tons of action in their stories. Witemeyer does have the two main characters question what they think about God and grow closer to him as the tension tightens around them. Overall, If the Boot Fits by Karen Witemeyer was a wonderful way to spend a day. I enjoyed the story and can't wait to see what fairy tale Witemeyer will conclude this series with.

I received a complimentary copy of If the Boot Fits by Karen Witemeyer from Bethany House Publishing, but the opinions stated are all my own.

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Purchase If the Boot Fits

About the Author

Voted #1 Reader’s Favorite Christian Historical Author of 2023 by Family Fiction magazine, bestselling and Carol and Christy Award-winning author Karen Witemeyer offers warmhearted historical romance with a flair for humor, feisty heroines, and swoon-worthy Texas heroes. She and her husband make their home in Abilene, Texas.





More from Karen

Character Names and Word Games

One of my favorite parts of writing any book is finding the perfect names for my characters. Names are so important. They carry meaning and expectation. They add historical flavor and help create a picture in the reader’s mind about who that character is. They can also add hidden joy to a story for me as the author that may or may not be realized by the reader.

If the Boot Fits was inspired by the classic fairy tale, Cinderella. I give it a fresh western twist and mixed up the plot a bit, but it was important to me to fill this tale with subtle nods to the version I loved as a child. One of the main ways I did this was through the naming of my characters.

I worked hard to create names that would harken back to the original while still carrying meaning of their own. Instead of Cinderella, we have a hero named Asher Ellis—Ash being a synonym of Cinder, and Ellis playing off of Ella. For our heroine, I wanted something to play on the “charming” motif without being too on-the-nose. I ended up selecting Samantha Dearing—Dearing like endearing or charming. Samantha is the feminine version of Samuel which comes into play in the story since her father’s name is Eli. The three key older ladies of the story all of names inspired by royalty, as befits a fairy tale—Regina, Elizabeth, and Victoria. Asher’s step brothers are named Jonathan and Fergus. However, Jonathan goes by Jack, giving a nod to the mice from Disney’s Cinderella, Jaq and Gus. Asher’s horse is named Bruno in honor of the dog who saved Cinderella from the tower room. We have a cattle king with a foreman named Duke as well. Whether readers catch all of these nods or not, they made me as the author smile while writing the story.

Here’s another way to have fun with names and other key story elements. I’ve created a word search for you to enjoy. Have fun!

Click here to play.





Blog Stops

Book Looks by Lisa, March 13

Melissa’s Bookshelf, March 13

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, March 14

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 14

Batya’s Bits, March 14

By the Book, March 15

Madi’s Musings, March 15

Texas Book-aholic, March 15

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 16

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, March 16

EmpowerMoms, March 16

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 17

Blossoms and Blessings, March 17

She Lives To Read, March 18

Where Faith and Books Meet, March 18

Blogging With Carol, March 19

Life of Literature, March 19

Simple Harvest Reads, March 19 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

ABBA’s Prayer Warrior Princess, March 20

Books You Can Feel Good About, March 20

lakesidelivingsite, March 20

Alena Mentink, March 21

Jeanette’s Thoughts, March 21

Splashes of Joy, March 21

Betti Mace, March 22

For Him and My Family, March 22

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, March 22

Cover Lover Book Review, March 23

Holly’s Book Corner, March 23

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, March 23

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, March 24 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, March 24

Lily’s Corner, March 25

Wishful Endings, March 25

Pause for Tales, March 25

Life on Chickadee Lane, March 26

Just Your Average reviews, March 26

Jodie Wolfe – Stories Where Hope and Quirky Meet, March 26


To celebrate her tour, Karen is giving away the grand prize package of a $15 Amazon gift card and a paperback copy of If the Boot Fits!! (US only)

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Friday, March 15, 2024

Welcome Spring!

 By Kelly Bridgewater

Spring is upon us!

I enjoy all the pretty flowers and the nice smells after it rains. 

I do enjoy a good thunderstorm where everything is wiped clean and smells clean. 

I love watching a thunderstorm approach, then watch as it pours down outside. 

How about you? What is your favorite part of spring?

Monday, March 11, 2024

Kimberley Woodhouse: Set in Stone

By Kelly Bridgewater

From the time she was little, Martha Jankowski has been digging in the dirt, much to the dismay of her mother. Now, she dreams of being a paleontologist and is determined to make her parents proud by uncovering the next big discovery. When Martha finds what she hopes to be a fully intact dinosaur skeleton--one that that could win her an acclaimed exhibit--she learns another team is competing against her and could steal her chance at being recognized for this momentous discovery.

Paleontology student Jacob Duncan has fulfilled his dream of digging for dinosaur bones at last. In a race against time, he and his team are bent on unearthing a complete skeleton to claim a museum exhibit with their names on it. But when Jacob meets their charming competitor Martha and uncovers foul play within his team, love and danger grow hand in hand until a menacing ruse threatens to destroy it all.

This enrapturing historical novel from bestselling author Kimberley Woodhouse transports you to the nineteenth-century Bone Wars-era, where adventure and romance combine to create an irresistible tale.


My Thoughts:

Set in Stone by Kimberley Woodhouse is a mystery historical novel. I really loved the mystery element that Woodhouse threw into the story. I love the concept of digging up dinosaurs bones as a competition. I love the setting and the Bone Wars - era story. Totally original and unique storyline. One of the issues I had with the plot is that in the beginning, the heroine, Martha, was told that she could not dig for bones anymore, then jump a head a couple of years, and she is on a dig. I want to know what happened that made her parents change their minds. It would have been nice to see that conversation where they allowed her to do the digging, but then give the stipulations of how and why she can. On the other hand, the romance between Martha and Jacob Duncan were a wealthy girl to a poor man love story. Forbidden, yet adventurous at the same time. I love seeing the heart of the two characters, however, the romance did develop a little bit over time. Many moments of indecision as they struggle with should they be feeling this way or not. Overall, Set in Stone by Kimberley Woodhouse is a delightful story that has not been seen before. I love learning about characters that uncover historical items or animals, in this story. I great story to spend time with.

I received a complimentary copy of Set in Stone by Kimberley Woodhouse from Bethany House Publishers, but the opinions stated are all my own.

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Purchase Set in Stone

Friday, March 8, 2024

Empty - Nesters

 By Kelly Bridgewater


What a strange phrase.

This is the term coined for when all your children have moved out.

I’m not there yet. Currently, my last son is a freshman in high school, but it will be happening soon.

I know from watching my mother, father, and other parents that it can be a lonely time.

I know as a parent kids can keep you hopping all the time. No time for a break, so it is hard to schedule your parents into your busy life.

But I enjoy my children.

Playing board games.

Talking to them.

Praying with them.

Teaching them new things.

Looking forward to the holidays and all the memories that we can make.

What will I have to look forward to when Christmas and Thanksgiving comes around, and they do not visit?

Of course, the grandchildren will be sent over for us to watch. I’m sure.

I will have plenty of time for my hobbies.


Writing, I pray.


Traveling, I pray.

Spending more time focused on my lovely husband.

What about you? Any advice for this pre-empty-nester?

Monday, March 4, 2024

Susan May Warren: One Last Shot

By Kelly Bridgewater

When country music star Oaken Fox joins survivalist Mike Grizz's new adventure show in the Alaskan wilderness, he just wants to boost his fan base. But when tragedy strikes, and Air One Rescue must save them, Oaken just wants to quit. Too bad his producer has other plans—signing him on with Air One Rescue as a recruit and making a reality show...

EMT Boo Kingston did not join Air One Rescue to train a celebrity. But she's a rookie to the team, so yes, she'll train Oaken and keep him alive and not for a minute pay attention to his charm...

And then five women go missing from a resort during a bachelorette weekend gone south. Now, Air One and the rescue team will have to use all their skills--and manpower, including Oaken--to find them before a blizzard settles in. But can they work together before tragedy strikes?


My Thoughts:

One Last Shot by Susan May Warren reminded me a lot of her Montana Rescue series. Plenty of action with a Rescue team that is put to the test as they battle external, personal, and spiritual conflicts. There are some familiar faces if readers have read Warren's previous novels. As for the plot in the story, Warren does a wonderful job at crafting plenty of movement with danger over and over again for the hunt to rescue under. Warren does a good job at showing the details of a number of different knots and rescue maneuvers that it shows she must have spent time researching the way to craft the authenticity of the story. Romance does grow as Boo and Oaken spend time together. Coming to truth with their past, the characters learn to move forward from their hurts in the past. Overall, One Last Shot by Susan May Warren is a thrilling rescue novel with plenty of heart and strength to keep the readers flipping through the pages.

I received a complimentary copy of One Last Shot by Susan May Warren from Susan May Warren but the opinions stated are all my own.

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Purchase One Last Shot 

Friday, March 1, 2024

Colossians 3:2

 By Kelly Bridgewater

Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.”

English Standard Version

A good reminder.

I need to keep my mind on God, not on all the craziness that is going on in our world today.

Thanks to Biden and inflation.

What about you? What do you do to keep your focus on God?