Rico gambled with his marriage when he cheated on Chloe. Breaking his vows and risking everything for temporary pleasure, he lost his wife’s respect and trust.
Rico returns to God, searching for a quick fix to win Chloe’s heart back, but his heart is the one that is changed. He is a self-proclaimed changed man, willing to go the extra mile to restore his marriage, but he just may be too late.
Has Chloe given up on him? She has forgiven him before, but this is different. “I’m sorry” isn’t enough when vows have been shattered. With the law and the Word of the Lord on her side, she finally gathers enough courage to walk away.
But then tragedy strikes. Is it enough to make Chloe stay, or will she start a new chapter in her life?
Rico let out a low whistle as Chloe descended the stairs with her matching camel-colored clutch under her arm. She was beautiful and he made sure she knew it.
“I’m the luckiest man in the world to have you on my arm tonight. You look beautiful, sweetie,” Rico complimented as he took her hand when she descended to the last three steps. When she made it to the bottom, he lifted her hand and brushed her wedding band with his fingers before planting a kiss on her hand.
“Thank you.” Chloe blushed a little and returned the compliment. “You look nice, too.” She noticed that he was wearing her favorite cologne as well, but didn’t make mention of it. Rico placed her hand around his arm and escorted her to the car. Their drive to the Improv was filled with chatter from Rico about what they did on previous anniversaries. She didn’t add much to the conversation, only nodded and smiled mostly. She had to admit that those times were nice, but this one was much different. In her mind was the insurmountable obstacle in front of them.
Rico had purchased their tickets online so they walked straight past the ticket booth to the entrance, where they were greeted by a hostess and shown to their VIP table near the stage. Noting the dim lighting, soft R&B music and the newly renovated facility, Chloe remembered their first date at the Improv, where they saw the comedian Arnez J in standup. They laughed until their stomachs and throats were in pain. She was hoping she would get another whiff of that tonight, although she didn’t know who the comedian was going to be. She just knew that she could use a laugh right about now. And not just any laugh, but a magic laugh that would take away all of the pain that she was feeling and trying so hard to push aside. The type of laughter that would somehow wipe the slate clean for the two of them. She was sure there was no such thing, but she was ready for the magic she hoped the night would bring for her.
She ordered a Caesar salad and he ordered buffalo wings to enjoy before the show started. On cue, the show began when the waitress came to take away their empty plates. They were tickled a little by the warm-up acts but nothing like what she was waiting for. However, she was feeling more relaxed and her body didn’t stiffen as it did earlier when Rico pulled her chair closer to his and put his arm around her.
There were still a few residual laughs from the crowd as the host appeared onstage to announce the headliner for the night—Will the Thrill. Chloe didn’t recognize the comedian’s stage name, so she knew she hadn’t heard any of his jokes before. New material. Great.
Will the Thrill jumped straight into his routine after the round of applause subsided. His first joke was about dating and how he wasn’t ready to commit to his girlfriend by getting married.
“C’mon now men. Y’all know how much extra work it is to hide the side woman when you get married. Gotta put all these codes in your phone, use aliases and lie, lie, lie. Even when you get caught, stick to the lie. Ain’t that right my man?” he joked as he gestured toward Rico.
Her anticipation waned at those jokes. In fact, they weren’t funny at all. Bad choice in her mind. What began to tick her off was that Rico was doubled over in laughter . . . clearly, something he shouldn’t have been laughing at given the situation they were in.
“What in the hell is so funny, Rico?” she sneered, leaning to the side to look up at him wiping tears from his eyes.
“What?” Rico asked, clearly confused.
“So cheating is funny?”
“Sweetie, these are just jokes. C’mon now.”
“I’m glad you think ruining our marriage and our lives is funny. I’m getting out of here!” Chloe scooted away from the table, snatched her purse and walked away with Rico following close behind.
“Looks like someone got caught doing what I just said not to do!” the comedian joked to their retreating backs as they exited the room, causing an uproar in the crowd.
Rico grabbed her hand and she spun around. She yanked her hand back and folded her arms across her chest. The look she gave would have killed him if looks could kill. Infidelity was a sore spot with her and definitely not a laughing matter. Rico couldn’t understand why she took it so seriously. Everyone in the room, except her, knew that those were only jokes. There was no reason to get upset over nothing. But to Chloe it wasn’t nothing; it was the reason her life was turned upside down.
Since graduating from Jackson State University with a Bachelors of Business Administration degree in Accounting, Natasha earned a Masters of Science degree in Accounting from Texas A&M University. Aside from being an author, Natasha is also a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Natasha has authored three devotional books. Her first book is The Life Your Spirit Craves (released November 2012), a 30-Day devotional and journal that encourages readers to seek, accept and pursue their God-given assignment. The Life Your Spirit Craves won the Readers’ Choice Award at the Christian Literary Awards November 2013. Her second book, Not Without You: 365 Days in the Lord’s Presence (released March 2014) encourages readers to make devotion a part of their everyday life by seeking God every day. Not Without You has been nominated for the Henri Award. The Henri Award recognizes excellence in Christian literature. The Life Your Spirit Craves for Mommie s is a 52 week devotional for mothers that encourages them to see God at work in their lives through their role as a mother. Natasha has also began a fiction series that focuses on real and relevant issues in today’s society, such as sex, adultery, blended families and more! Her debut series contains three titles – Love, Lies & Consequences, Through Thick & Thin, and Shattered Vows (January 2017 release).
With a love for God’s people, especially women and children, Natasha channels her passion through writing and participating in SASSy, an organization whose focus is to inspire and encourage women to take second steps and become the person God has called them to be. Each month, women participating in SASSy select a different cause and give our time and resources by volunteering in the community. We have volunteered at women’s shelters, Kids’ Meals, Inc. and have performed random acts of kindness throughout the Houston, TX area.
Natasha resides in Missouri City, TX with her husband, Eddie Frazier, Jr. and their three children, Eden, Ethan, and Emilyn. Her greatest joy and commitment is to her family who she hopes to inspire above all else. One of her many mottos in life is: Faith removes limitations.
About The Book
About The Author
After ministering at the local city jail for about eight years, Minister Denise accepted her public call to ministry in late 2006 and is a licensed Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. She has ministered at Women Conferences and other events locally and can be heard each second Sunday of the month on WFEB Radio 1340 AM at 6:30 a.mministry also involves teaching the Body of Christ to utilize the arts such as praise and worship dance, interpretive movement and expressive signing, drama, and poetry through public and private workshops.
Minister Godfrey has trained under a professional dance instructor at the Dance and Performing Arts Studio in Sylacauga Alabama and has also obtained certification as a Liturgical Dance Instructor through Visual Praise Dance Ministries.
Author: Suzette D. Harrison
Welcome to the sleepy, all-Black southern town of Bledsoe, where Colored residents proudly declare “ain’t nothing white here ‘cept milk and teeth.” It’s 1935. A press-and-curl costs a quarter. Records play on phonographs. And a telephone is a luxury.
Meet twenty-three-year-old Taffy Bledsoe Freeman. She doesn’t need her gift of second sight to know her “mockery of a marriage” to a man twice her age is far from good. After a seven-year exile Up North, Taffy travels down-home to the small town bearing her family’s name, plotting her escape from a marriage not worth the price of a press-and-curl. She only needs to retrieve the son her husband banished to her parents’ care, before boarding a train headed for the Windy City filled with liberty and opportunity. Instead, Taffy stumbles into Roam Ellis: the man Taffy meant to marry.
Twenty-six-year-old Roam Ellis is a “broad-shouldered, hard-bodied” Pullman porter riding the rails coast-to-coast, outrunning the bitter heartbreak Taffy left behind. Now, after a seven-year absence, Roam is face-to-face with his first love. Anger ignites. Old wounds are exposed. But when pain subsides, passion rises, thrusting Taffy and Roam into a hurricane of buried secrets and lies.
Reminiscent of the works of Bernice McFadden, Bertice Berry, and Andrea Smith (The Sisterhood of Blackberry Corner) this Historical Romance is bathed in southern lore and sweeping imagery. Lyrical and powerful, Taffy is a story of restoration and redemption that you won’t soon forget.
Suzette D. Harrison, a native Californian and the middle of three daughters, grew up in a home where reading was required, not requested. Her literary “career” began when her poetry appeared in a volume of creative writing published by her junior high school. While Ms. Harrison pays homage to Gloria Naylor, Dr. Maya Angelou, Alice Walker, and Toni Morrison for initially inspiring her creative spirit, it was Alex Haley’s Roots (which she read at the age of fourteen) that unveiled the tremendous power and importance of African American literary voices. In addition to being the wife of a university professor and mother of gorgeous children, Suzette is a cupcake proprietor who loves singing gospel-with-a-hint-of-jazz. An elementary school librarian, Suzette is currently working on her next novel…in between batches of cupcakes.
Taffy made ready to fuss him out only to reconsider. That steel-headed man won’t move. She would. Taffy eyed the fence, knowing she’d earlier hopped it with ease. But she couldn’t hike her dress up before present company.
“Go ahead,” Roam goaded, popping peppermints in his mouth, ready to enjoy the spectacle. “I’d like to see you try.”
Options were few with the opposite side of the road lined by a ditch and a frighteningly out-of-control briar patch. Taffy could reverse her path. I’m not! Taffy had long ago learned how to do what she had to.
“You ‘bout to break something,” Roam warned, shaking his head as Taffy prepared to climb. “Gal, quit acting up and walk this way.”
Ignoring Roam, Taffy hoisted herself onto the bottom rail. Fumbling, she tried climbing with shoes in hand, finally dropping them over the fence, onto the other side.
Roam moved quickly before Taffy, too, was beyond reach.
Taffy felt an arm snake about her waist, effortlessly hauling her backward as if it didn’t cost Roam a thing. “What’re you doing?!”
“Whatever I want,” Roam responded, setting Taffy on her feet, anchoring an arm about her waist when Taffy spun, spitting heat.
“Move, Roam.” Taffy strained against Roam’s iron hold. “Get off me before I hurt you!”
Her fire fizzled. Voice softened, tongue tasted regret. “Roam, what do you want?”
“You.” Taffy stilled. Roam reinforced his hold. “Two things I won’t do with you: mince words or waste time.” Lifting her chin, claiming her mouth, Roam proved his point.
His lips were hot, soft, sweet. Taffy got lost savoring them and him, and the bombarding emotions of mere moments before became nonexistent. Oh my blessedness, Taffy inwardly purred, feeling a slow, unsanctioned melting. They’d shared quick, quaint kisses in adolescent sweetheart days. Never this. Never with man-to-woman savoir faire. Resuscitated passions exploded and multiplied. Taffy could barely breathe let alone think, so she followed love’s lead and held on for the ride.
#newrelease #christianfiction #romance #novel
Paperback: 378 pages
Publisher: eLectio Publishing (May 25, 2016)
Parker J Cole the author of Dark Cherub and the Sins of the Flesh series; this includes Many Strange Women, The Other Man, and Vengeful Vows. She is also host of The Write Stuff, which showcases Christian authors worldwide and the Parker J Cole Show interviewing guest, news, and commentary. When not writing or hosting, she spends most of her time reading, knitting, cooking and concocting new ideas for stories. She lives in Michigan with her husband and dog, Sarah.
Daffodil Simmons knows how the world works. She’s the spider, all the world is a fly. She has spent her life spinning webs, using people for personal gain. And now, she’s about to spin her biggest one yet – for vengeance. She’ll do whatever it takes to get revenge on the two men who abandoned her: her father, and her former lover. When she blackmails her half-sister Leah Westwood’s ex-lover to do her bidding, she tightens her fist around his will and brings him into submission to her plans.
Vincent Miller hates that Daffodil has a noose around his neck, forcing him to do whatever she wants. But he’ll do anything to steal Leah back from Jacob Westwood, the man who destroyed his life, even if it means making a deal with a blue-eyed spider. Yet as Daffodil spins her web, he finds himself entrapped by a silk of a very different kind and intrigued by a woman who only sees him as expendable prey
Everything is going according to plan until another spider, a ghost from Daffodil’s past, begins to interfere with their web. It’s a battle of wits against a powerful foe. When it comes time to make the ultimate choice, can Daffodil lay aside everything she’s ever known… for something even greater? Can Vincent set aside his need for revenge to go after what’s in front of him?
Twitter link: https://twitter.com/ParkerJCole
Facebook link https://www.facebook.com/parker.j.cole4125
An Ember In Time, Virtual Book Tour, Author Anna M. Aquino, May 9-20, 2016
Genre: Christian Fiction
Book Release Date: Publisher: eLectio Publishing (March 30, 2016)
About The Author
Anna M. Aquino is a super fabulous woman of God, wife, and ninja mom of two daughters. As a writer, guest minister, and host of an online interview show, Anna’s passion is to encourage others to fulfill their own destinies. Often referred to as a preacher and a comedian rolled into one, she believes laughter is one of the best ways to get people to think. She is the author of many works including Cursing the Church or Helping it? and Confessions of a Ninja Mom. Her first fiction book An Ember In Time is now on the market. She has been interviewed on places such as TBN and the Gospel Channel. She and her family do travel for ministry, Anna is based out of Central Ohio.
About The Book
Pastor Jon Stevens has grown weary trying to argue with his church over every little thing. His passion in life has felt as if it has fizzled in front of him. He is caught in a downward spiral. He would rather keep his feelings on a shelf and just visit them on occasion as he needed to. He keeps a plastic smile on his face. Sometimes he imagines himself as a used car salesmen. He throws on a cheap suit every Sunday. He trying desperately to peddle the same God that everyone in his town seems to know about and has heard of before, and where does it get him? He knows his attitude is wrong. But if he walked down to Charley’s Auto Bonanza and got a job; at least he would be making commission.
However, that is when God steps in. God sends Sergio a time traveling angel to give him the opportunity to experience any time in Biblical History with the stipulation that he not interact with anyone. He goes back to watch David kill Goliath. Due to a chance encounter on the road with a very young Bathsheba carrying a basket of flowers, Jon makes his crucial mistake. He has to fix the past before it unravels the future. Little does Jon know that God has sent him on the mission to prepare him for his future.
An Ember In Time is an excellent read for anyone who loves a first-rate adventure.
Read the Excerpt: http://bit.ly/1UiZnz5
What Others Are Saying
“Anna Aquino’s uniquely anointed and creative writing is evident in this book, “An Ember in Time”. Guided by the Holy Spirit and given the hand of the ready writer, it will grasp your attention from start to finish! These pages are filled with her experiences and inspired imagination for the first in a series of great adventures.”
Hank and Brenda Kunneman
Senior Pastors of Lord of Hosts Church & Founders of One Voice Ministries
Tour hosted by Write Now Literary http://www.wnlbooktours.com
Follow the tour: Author page http://wnlbooktours.com/anna-m-aquino/
7 Essential Habits:
The anthology contains poetry, articles, devotionals, and short stories
Loved to slovenliness . . .
my 1976 Funk and Wagnalls
Standard College Dictionary
as East of Eden is American.
Its wealth of definitions
splits and refracts words
into the spectrum
of the markers, Sharpies, and highlighters
in the mug within arm’s reach.
Its insights into language
pronunciation, and genesis
as revealing as the cheesecloth
and naked board
of its tattered binding.
It is more illuminating
than the power-stingy spiral
of the piano-lamp cyclops
my moving hand
over the sleek white genie
at my elbow
that reminds me
with its pulsing fluorescent eye
it too has word-wealth at my fingertips.
You are invited to follow along as many of the contributing authors of 7 Essential Habits of Christian Writers participate in a blog hop. I encourage you to click on the links below to see what each author shares. Comments would be appreciated, and if you like what you read remember to share the post on your favourite social media sites 🙂
Ruth L. Snyder Monday, September 14th
Brenda Wood Wednesday, September 16th
Janet Sketchley Friday, September 18th
Jack Popjes Monday, September 21st
Marcia Laycock Friday, September 24th
Steph Nickel Monday, September 28th
Sally Meadows Wednesday, September 30th
Tracy Krauss Friday, October 2nd
Glynis Belec Monday, October 5th
The Crosby family has a frightening problem. Is it psychological? Supernatural? Or something entirely unexpected?
In 1984, seventeen-year-old Rose and her fiancé discover an injured girl with no memory. The girl, Jordan, is in Rose’s life for a brief time but leaves her world shattered.
Twenty-five years later, Rose Crosby’s daughter Ginny can’t understand why her relationship with her mother has fallen apart. Ginny could swear that Rose is terrified of her lately.
Then one awful day, Ginny overhears Rose confessing that she truly is terrified of Ginny—because to her, every day Ginny grows more and more and more like Jordan, the girl who’s been dead many years. In fact, she swears that somehow, Ginny is turning into Jordan.
Is Ginny’s mom insane? Is there a ghost in their house, threatening to possess Ginny? Or is the demon in Rose’s past, forcing her to confront what happened on that horrible day in 1984 when Jordan was killed?
As a new girl in a small town, Ginny doesn’t have much of a support system. Her old girlfriends from Atlanta have drifted away, and the only friends she’s made are, strangely enough, guys. Alec Matthews is gorgeous, but is he really interested in Ginny’s well-being? And then there’s Max Ferguson, the recently-born-again science nerd. He’s definitely on Ginny’s side, but is he a little too strange?
Strengthened by a deepening relationship with one of these two, Ginny undertakes a mind-bending journey of discovery—discovery about faith, eternity, and love beyond the boundaries of space and time. She will put to rest a mystery that has haunted her family for two generations—if she can survive.
Excerpt from Chapter 1
In 1984, seventeen-year-old Rose and her fiancé discover an injured girl with no memory, and it changes her life forever…
Hunter was still focused on the girl. “Miss? Who are you? What happened?”
Slowly, she brought her hand up in front of her face. Her mouth moved, as though she was trying to speak. In spite of her fear, Rose leaned closer and managed to hear the girl say, “That light. It hurts my head.”
That’s when Rose saw she had blood on her face, too. “Hunter, I think she has a head injury.” Rose felt a warm rush of compassion, melting her fear away in an instant. Without a second thought, she touched her fingertips to the girl’s arm and felt clammy, wet skin. “What happened to you? Did you fall in the pond?”
The girl just looked at her, but now Rose knew why. Her eyes were glassy and dazed. The skin of her arm felt cold against Rose’s fingers, even in the muggy night air. Feeling Hunter moving closer to her, Rose said, “I think she’s in shock.”
Rose remembered vague instructions from TV shows about keeping shock victims warm. In movies, someone always had a blanket handy. Unfortunately, it was May. Rose was wearing as little clothing as Mamma would let her get away with and certainly wasn’t hauling blankets around. But it was all right. Hunter was stripping off the shirt that hung loosely over his Aerosmith tee and approaching the girl with it, like someone sneaking up on a bird with a net. She stared at him and didn’t move, so he draped it around her shoulders.
The girl pulled the covering tighter and actually spoke. “Thank you.”
He cleared his throat two or three times before he said hoarsely, “You’re welcome.”
The girl, who was taller than Rose, tilted her head and looked at Hunter. Noting the girl’s long, lean figure, Rose felt a pang of something ugly as she thought how stunning they were, standing there together, two black-haired beauties lost in each other’s gaze.
Of course, the girl had a head injury, which probably explained the dreamy trance she seemed to be in. But what was the matter with Hunter? The longer the moment stretched on, the tinier Rose felt, until she finally blurted out, “Come on. Let’s take her to the house.”
Hunter blinked, as though waking. “The house? We need to get her to the hospital.”
Rose hesitated. “I don’t know.”
“You don’t know?” He spat out the words, making her jump. “Oh for Pete’s sake, if you’re worried about your mother, I’ll take the heat for it.”
Hunter slid his arm around the girl’s waist to support her. She swayed in his embrace, so he bent and lifted her from the ground while barking orders at Rose. “Go open the car door.” She ran to obey, and he gently deposited the girl on the back seat. “You ride back there with her and look after her.”
Again, Rose did as she was told, sliding in beside the girl, even taking her hand to comfort her. The girl’s fingers lay in Rose’s, limp and icy. Then she raised the hand to her damp hair, pulled a strand forward and started wrapping it tightly around her index finger. So tightly Rose figured it must hurt, although the girl continued to do it, over and over, releasing the hair and then twisting it tight again, cutting into her finger with it.
“What’s your name?” Rose asked her. Still no answer.
Rose waited, giving the girl time to collect herself and think. But her gaze grew distant, and she started to hum some tune that seemed vaguely familiar. Jiggling her hand, Rose tried to bring her attention back. “What’s your name?”
Again that tilt of her head as she seemed to consider the question. “I don’t…I’m not sure.”
Rose never was certain that the girl was telling the truth about that. But she was sure of one thing, at that moment and in the years to come. She should never have let Hunter take her back to the pond. They certainly shouldn’t have thrown open the car doors and meddled with the night. The minute they did, the darkness that had pressed against the car windows won. It streamed inside with them, into their safe little world, and blotted out all her sunny dreams. There would be no wedding with Hunter, no cozy apartment at the University of Georgia, no blissful escape. The darkness swallowed it all.
And the darkness was in the shape of a pale-faced, raven-haired girl.
Robin Johns Grant published her first novel, Summer’s Winter, in 2014, and her second suspense novel, Jordan’s Shadow, has just been released. Summer’s Winter won a bronze medal in the Romance – Suspense category of the International Readers’ Favorite Book Awards, and Robin was named 2014 Author of the Year by the Georgia Association of College Stores.
Family and friends are happy that Robin’s imagination is finally paying off. She’s always had way too much of it. She started making up stories before she could write them down (dictating them to her mother) and always had her head in the clouds. She was obsessed with books and movies like Harry Potter and Star Wars and did a lot of crazy fan stuff, which helped her dream up Jeanine and Jamie’s story for Summer’s Winter. It’s a romantic suspense novel, but as John Granger (author of The Deathly Hallows Lectures) said, it’s also “a romance-thriller about fandoms…and explores the important intersection of literature, spirituality, and imagination.”
As a Christian, Robin can’t help but explore spirituality in her writing, but wants to do so in a way that reflects the awe and wonder of God and eternity.
With a degree in English, several non-fulfilling jobs under her belt, and a mid-life crisis coming on, Robin returned to school and earned a master’s degree in library and information science. She now has her best day job ever as a college librarian, which keeps her young by allowing her to hang out with students.
With her wonderful husband Dave and formerly feral felines Mini Pearl and Luna, Robin lives in Georgia. She is also surprised to find herself part owner of a pit bull named Pete, who showed up as a starving stray puppy at her mother’s house.
Keep up with Robin at these sites:
Anaiah Press proudly presents
A THOUSAND STOLEN MOMENTS by Connie Ann Michael
a military romantic novel available on March 3!
The freezing temperatures of the night woke Doogie. The area was quiet, except for a few light snores coming from the men. She got up, stretched her muscles, and then grabbed an MRE and headed to the fire.
Raven’s shadowed outline was visible next to the fire as she approached.
“Quiet tonight,” she said.
“You should be sleeping. Not sure when it will be this quiet again.” Raven’s deep voice sent a chill through her.
“I’m not much of a sleeper.”
“We have guys with NVG’s watching. The Taliban might be using the dark to maneuver around our flanks. But I don’t think so. You should at least rest.”
“Hmm,” she hummed while she squeezed the bag she held.
“What’s for dinner?” Raven’s expression was more relaxed than usual.
“Uh?” Doogie held the label toward the fire. “Applesauce. But it’s debatable as to the amount of apples in it.”
“I have some beef stew in my pack if you want it. You can’t keep up with only applesauce.”
“Why is it always stew? Why can’t they MRE a cheese burger?” Doogie sucked on the bag.
“I think the food has to be juicy to get out of the bag.” Raven shrugged.
“Stew has chunks of mysterious stuff. You’d think a few chunks of normal food would fit in there. Besides, ketchup is juicy.”
“Well when you get out you can go into the business of creating wonderful gourmet MRE’s. The men would love you.”
“And the women.” Doogie smiled at him.
The corner of Raven’s mouth looked like it might have turned up, but she wasn’t sure. “Who can forget the women?”
“I’ll hire you if you need a job after the war,” Doogie offered.
Raven snuck a quick glance at her before returning to stare at the fire. “I’d appreciate that. I could be your tester. I’ll see if the cheeseburger is up to par. I’ve been known to cook a mean burger.”
“Excellent. Maybe you could even cook the burger since I don’t cook.” Doogie rubbed her hands together at the thought of seeing Raven after the war.
“You don’t cook?” Raven seemed surprised.
“I enlisted at nineteen so didn’t have time to hone my domestic skills.”
“Oh,” was all he said.
They stood in awkward silence for a few minutes.
“Today’s Valentine’s Day,” she blurted.
Raven narrowed his eyes, his mouth in its signature scowl, and then started to laugh. “Yeah, I guess it is.”
“It’s just. Well Tahk told me.” She was such a dork.
“Was he planning a party? Handing out Valentines to the locals?”
Doogie’s head jerked to look over at Raven. Had he just tried to be funny? She’s never had an actual conversation with him. Usually he talked at her…or yelled at her. She let out a stiff laugh. “No.”
Deborah Heal’s new Rewinding Time Series features some of the same characters from her Time and Again trilogy, but it takes place fifteen years after that amazing summer Abby came to tutor Merrideth. (Note: You can snag Time and Again FREE for Kindle. OR get the whole boxed trilogy at a discount.)
It is not necessary to read the trilogy in order read the new Rewinding Time Series, but those who did will enjoy revisiting Merrideth Randall, who is all grown up with “history mysteries” of her own to solve. Her day job is teaching history at a small college. But after hours she turns to her first love, historical research. And she has a tool other historians can only dream of—a computer program that rewinds time!
FROM PROFESSOR RANDALL’S NOTEBOOK…
Field Research Location:
Columbia and Waterloo, Monroe County, Illinois.
Discover where Fort Piggot was located on the Kaskaskia Trail, while staying clear of attractive, single colleagues (ie. Brett!) so as not to commit career suicide, while also keeping the “rewinding time” program secret, so Uncle Sam doesn’t turn into Big Brother.
Merrideth makes a virtual visit to the 1780s, hoping to be the first to locate an ancient pioneer fort. Along the way, she gets a first-hand look at the lives of the courageous settlers of the Illinois Country, who withstood Indian attacks, hardship, and loneliness to settle the rich land.
One of the settlers is James Garretson, who risks his life to take the Gospel to the very tribe that wreaked havoc on his family. Merrideth is amazed that he could forgive a crime so huge. Hero or fool, James Garretson is the ancestor of her colleague Brett, a physics professor at her college
With her findings, Merrideth is able to help Brett with his genealogy, but she can’t tell him everything she learned—like that he inherited his black hair and green eyes from James Garretson, or that his aunt’s poetry is eerily similar to the verse Garretson’s wife Isabelle used to compose at her spinning wheel.
Brett has rock-star status on campus, but amazingly enough, he seems to be pursuing Merrideth—in spite of her firm policy against dating co-workers. She would love to tell him about her amazing program, but discretion is not his strong suit. She has secrets about herself that she’d just as soon he didn’t find out either. One virtue Brett does have is patience, and he’s quite willing to wait for Merrideth to figure things out.
from Professor Randall’s Notebook…
FIELD RESEARCH SITE: Golconda, Illinois.
GOAL: Trace client’s Frailey ancestors—back to Scotland if possible—and get home in time for dinner.
NOTE TO SELF: Do NOT fall in love with Matthias Frailey—even though he is was quite wonderful. Remember, idiot, he’s been dead for over 175 years.
Professor Merrideth Randall’s latest after-hours genealogy consulting gig takes her and friends Abby and John to the small southern Illinois town of Golconda on the Ohio River. She expects to have to research the old-fashioned way at the courthouse. But thankfully, her client’s ancestor Matthias Frailey once hung out in Golconda’s ancient Ferry House Inn, and that means Beautiful Houses, Merrideth’s time-rewinding software, will work after all.
It doesn’t take Merrideth and her friends long to time-surf back to find out what they need to know about Matthias Frailey and his family. But when they become eyewitnesses to the arrival of the Cherokee on the Golconda Ferry on December 3, 1838, they cannot tear their eyes away from the tragedy that unfolds—nor from Matthias Frailey’s heroic response to it. The people are herded down Main Street on their Trail of Tears, bound for the Oklahoma Country, while the townsfolk only watch, or even cheer. But not Matthias Frailey. He does what he can to help them, especially a very spirited—and very pregnant—woman named White Dove who insists on walking so others may ride in the wagons.
Spending so much time inside Matthias’ head, Merrideth has no doubt that he is the kind, selfless man he appears to be. It’s impossible not to fall a little in love with him—despite the fact that he’s from another century. Meanwhile, in the here and now, handsome Golconda historian Aaron Landis is doggedly pursuing her. And back home her colleague Brett Garrison keeps calling while he waits for her return. But are they—or any man—worthy of her trust? Too bad there isn’t a way to time-surf in their heads. Now that would be a dating tool she could really put to good use.
Do events from your past continue to play over and over in your mind? Do you feel like your relationship with God is not where it should be? Are you looking for a deeper worship experience?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then I have some good news for you. The answer may seem far away, but it’s actually much closer than you think.
Altars of the Heart will take you on a journey to rediscover who you are and give you authentic tools to help you connect back to walking hand-in-hand with God through deeper worship.
The knowledge and insight that you will gain from reading this book will take you to a life of newfound liberation from insecurities, fear, doubt, shame, and un-forgiveness.
You will be encouraged to do an internal “heart” examination, to re-evaluate how you interact with others, make choices and worship the Lord.
The Word of God specifically states in the book of Hosea 4:6, that my people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge. I issue a challenge to you to open this book, and allow your life to experience freedom from bondage and finally discover your path to deeper worship.
Open this book, and let’s have a heart to heart conversation!
April Minger was born and raised in Springfield, Ohio. After graduating from high school, April joined the United States Air Force. April works in the Insurance and Health Care fields, and also has a Master’s degree in Business, graduating with honors, and is a member of the Alpha Beta Kappa Chapter of The National Honor Society. She currently resides in Fort Drum, New York, where her husband serves on active duty as a member of the United States Army. April and her husband of eighteen years have two children.
Stop Five on the Tour
Getting to know Lorilyn Roberts
Author of Am I Okay, God? Devotionals from the Seventh Dimension
What are your current projects?
Since Am I Okay, God? Devotionals from the Seventh Dimension is published I’m on to my next project, writing my second and third books in the Seventh Dimension Series. I had to split The King into two books when I realized it was going to be 130,00 words. That’s too long for a YA novel unless you are A.K. Rowlings. The King is Book 2 and The Castle is Book 3.
The King should be published in the summer of 2014.
Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Am I Okay, God? Devotionals from the Seventh Dimension is a companion book to the Christian YA Fantasy Series Seventh Dimension. The first book, The Door, in the Seventh Dimension Series is the story of a young girl who is bullied and misunderstood. She travels back 2,000 years ago and meets a king who changes her life. While there, she falls in love with a young man who has also traveled back in time. The King and The Castle, Books 2 and 3, is Daniel’s story. Am I Okay, God? is a stand-alone book. Those who read the Seventh Dimension Fantasy Series will enjoy these 27 devotionals.
The series is a fantasy because I have made the spiritual world a reality and called it the seventh dimension. Anything can happen there—including meeting talking animals, twins of people you know from your past, and unusual spiritual creatures. The displaced characters have special abilities. The Seventh Dimension Series has a strong spiritual theme and the books are aimed at the YA, although older people have also enjoyed journeying to the seventh dimension.
If you like stories like Alice in Wonderland, The Narnia Series, Pilgrim’s Progress, Ben Hur, and It’s a Wonderful Life, you would enjoy my books.
What is the hardest part of writing your books?
The hardest part of writing is finding the time. I have a full-time job, and I adopted and have raised two daughters who are now 23 and 15 as a single mother. When I’m working on a book, I get very obsessed with writing and research, to the exclusion of other important things—like cooking, getting groceries, and just every-day ordinary living. It’s good and bad. I get stuff written, but I let stuff go that I shouldn’t.
Writing in my spare time is not easy. Right now, I’m typing this at 5:05 a.m. in the morning. I haven’t gone to bed yet. And this is typical—and insane.
Did you learn anything from writing your books and what was it?
Before starting the first draft of The King, I read several books and watched many YouTube videos and documentaries on the history channel. I wanted a solid understanding of Jewish history and why the Jews for the most part have rejected Yeshua as their Messiah. The protagonist in The King is an Israeli, and I needed to know my character before I could write his story.
I am amazed at the quality of the information available on the web. Every question I had was answered. I have written 50,000 words with about 15,000 more to go—the last part of The King involves the world of chariot racing. I still need to do more research, but I love that aspect of writing. I learn a lot and that keeps me motivated to write exciting scenes. I hope that comes across to my readers.
Probably the most challenging part of The King was coming up with the cover. I wanted a chariot on the front with an amphitheater (I have visited the Roman Coliseum in Italy), and I wanted it to look authentic, like a real chariot race from two thousand years ago. I have the best cover designer in the world, Lisa Hainline (see Lisa Hainline’s website) who pulled it off for me. I’m as excited about this cover as I was The Door and Am I Okay, God? Both were done by Lisa.
Did you have to travel much concerning your Seventh Dimension Series?
I could not have written the Seventh Dimension Series had I not been to Israel. I was a student in Jerusalem studying at the Institute of Holy Land Studies at the start of the Gulf War in 1991. I hope I never have to wear a gas mask or worry about shooting myself with nerve gas again. The worst part was I didn’t understand the instructions they gave on how or when to use the nerve gas antidote, and then I was terrified I’d need to shoot myself. I decided to leave and took the last plane out of Tel Aviv and flew to Engelberg, Switzerland. There were no more flights back to the U.S. My family and friends thought I was insane, but you can do those things when you don’t have children. God has given me many life experiences that find their way into my books.
How much of The Seventh Dimension Series is realistic?
I have tried to make the fantasy part realistic and the realistic part fantasy—what I mean is that the seventh dimension is real and forever. Our reality here will one day end. So what’s real takes on a very different meaning when you think about it in spiritual terms.
Is anything in The Seventh Dimension Series based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?
The beginning of The King is based on my personal experience from being in Israel before and during the 1991 Gulf War. At the beginning of the novel, there is an earthquake that hits Mount Zion and the Dome of the Rock is destroyed. That sets off a series of events that will eventually lead to war in the Middle East. When the protagonist goes into the seventh dimension, the fantasy part becomes real. Many historical facts are woven into the story. Probably the best way to categorize the Seventh Dimension Series is to call it “visionary.”
Who designed the cover?
Lisa Hainline. Her website is Lions Gate Book Design
Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published or self-publishing your first book?
At 58, no publisher is going to invest any money in me. I’m too old. Besides that, I love the whole process of creating to writing to publishing to marketing. I lead a network of Christian authors called the John 3:16 Marketing Network and we help each other, both traditional and indie authors, in the marketing process.
I’ve met many authors who have become my friends and I can’t imagine them not being a part of my life. To be honest, my close friends and family don’t really care that much about my writing. Those friends knew me long before I became an author and our relationships were not built on that. My daughters have never read any of my books. So author relationships are very dear to me—perhaps why I’m always helping new authors. If I were traditionally published, I probably would not have started the network because when I started it, traditional authors “shunned” me. That was three years ago.
A lot has happened in the publishing world in the last three years. I have always welcomed both traditional and indie authors into the network and feel like we’ve paved the way for others, or maybe God showed me the possibilities to start the network because He knew the future. While it’s still nearly impossible for indie authors to get their books into bookstores, the e-book world with Kindle and other e-book formats has revolutionized indie publishing. For those who are independent-minded with an entrepreneurial spirit—and perhaps maybe a little too impatient to submit and be rejected a hundred times by traditional publishers, it works.
I wouldn’t trade my experience as an indie author for any contract from any publisher. Some things are more valuable than money. What I’ve learned will help me with all the books I have yet to write. I’m not dependent on anyone to open doors for me. If readers like my books, they will buy them. And that’s what ‘s important, that I publish the best books for my readers and keep them coming back for more.
Tell us about the book you have published now, Am I Okay, God? Devotionals from the Seventh Dimension
Am I Okay God? is a devotional book that complements The Door. I wanted readers who had questions to be able to learn more about why I wrote The Door and the spiritual concepts that come up in the novel. I wanted the Seventh Dimension Series to be a good fantasy read and the devotional companion books to be an enjoyable study on how to live out the Christian faith. Am I Okay, God covers hot topics like bullying, dating, love, forgiveness, self-esteem, eschatology, salvation, and life goals. I will do a devotional companion book to The King after that novel is published also. Many spiritual elements come up in Daniel’s journey through the seventh dimension that are different from Shale, the protagonist in The Door.
Let me add on a personal note, the more I learn about God, the more mystery I find in the Bible; and the more I realize I don’t know. My relationship with God has deepened as I’ve gotten older. I hope my books reflect that exploration of what it means to be a Christian and what truly lies on the other side in the seventh dimension.
Lorilyn Roberts is an award-winning Christian author who lives in Gainesville, Florida.
You can learn more about her books at her website.
Don’t Miss Out on the Next Stop!
John 3:16 Book Launch Blog Tour Schedule is as Follows:
Monday May 5
Featuring Author Randy Kirk
Tuesday May 6
Featuring Author Lorilyn Roberts
Wednesday May 7
Featuring Author Laura J. Davis
Thursday May 8
Featuring Author Emma Right
Friday May 9
Featuring Author Lorilyn Roberts
Monday May 12
Featuring Author Randy Kirk
Tuesday May 13
Featuring Laura Davis
Wednesday May 14
Featuring Author Emma Right
Thursday May 15
Featuring Our Landing Page
You can also check out the Rafflecopter drawing on Facebook!
In GLEN GOULD: SKETCHES OF SOLITUDE writer Anne Kaufmann gives us an imaginative glimpse into the world and soundscapes of Canadian icon and music legend, Glenn Gould. It is a series of vignettes or “sketches” of Gould’s life based on his own recollections over the years and those of others who knew him. Artist Rudin Koci perfectly augments the poetic prose with his colorful, bold and energetic illustrations. This book will inspire young people of today to nurture their own creativity through art and music.
Anne Kaufmann is a former teacher librarian. She studied English Literature at Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Toronto. Her passions include music, books, animals and creating nature journals. She has shared her life with dogs, horses, cats and birds. A nature lover, she spends many hours exploring the forests north of her home with her Border Collie, Indy. Some of her favorite childhood memories include summers at her cottage on Lake Simcoe, settling back on the family couch reading while listening to her dad’s weekly String Quartet group, playing with her dogs and wishing for a horse. She lives in Ontario, Canada.
Rudin Koci was born on January 7th, 1971, in Tirana, Albania. He holds dual citizenship, Canadian and Albanian. In 1994, Rudin graduated from Academy of Arts, Tirana, Albania with a major in Theatre Design and finished his Masters in Fine Arts in 2001-2003 at the Slade School of Art, University College, London, UK. In 2007 he earned his Bachelor of Education at Windsor University, Ontario in 2007. Rudin lives in Toronto, Ontario and shares his passion for art with his students.
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Hosted by: Write Now Literary Virtual Book Tour
I want. I want you to want me. I want you to think I am the smartest, the thinnest, the most beautiful. I want you to want to be me. I want to be enviable. I want to be impervious. I want to need nothing. I want you to know that I am strong. I want to think I am better than everyone else. I want.
I’m willing to give up everything. I will give up mind and future. I will give up health, happiness and peace. I will give up family, friends and fun. I will give up rest and comfort. I will give up food. But please, just let me keep faith.
In this raw telling of her long struggle with anorexia, Abby Kelly reveals the predatory lies that ran rampant in her disordered mind. She will lead readers through the fight to her final victory.
Readers will find empathy, compassion and insight in these pages. Most of all, they will find hope for recovery and a life beyond the battle.
“You will never see me again!” I screamed. I knew I was running out of time as we approached the airport. “I’ll die there! I’m never coming home.”
“Abby, stop. You are getting yourself all worked up and we have to go inside now.” My father parked the car in the dismal parking garage. Ignoring my residual choking on tears, he got out of the car and began to extract the suitcases, careful not to get any dirt on his jeans.
Daddy always looked sharp, one more thing I hated about myself. In the last several years I had become more of a skeleton freak show than an attractive daughter he could be proud of. My face was gaunt and haggard and wore the look of an aging smoker. My breasts were flat and my waist curve-less, like a prepubescent boy. I wore sea-foam green sweat pants with the word “SPIRIT” in block letters down my right leg. The sweats hung around my thighs like a tent missing poles, but I liked them because I felt small inside them. A sloppy white t-shirt blaring “SPIRIT” as well, topped the ensemble.
“Abby, get out of the car.”
I debated for a moment, but knew that I’d never win. The wildest of my tantrums were no match for Dad’s strength, but until now, at least in the battle of wills, I had triumphed. Two days prior my parents played their trump card.
“We’ve tried everything.” My parents had me cornered in their bedroom. Mom spoke because I listened more calmly to her. “We’ve been patient while you’ve promised over and over to try. We are really, really worried about you.”
Mom’s voice broke there. Dad turned and glared at my little sisters eavesdropping from the bedroom doorway. Two sets of chocolate brown eyes and one blue pair ducked back into the hallway. Then he shut the door and stepped forward.
“You promised to gain ten pounds in two months.” Dad’s voice was taut. The six-foot-four man that I once thought invincible slouched beneath a heavy burden. “Over a month ago, you agreed to the ultimatum that you would gain eight pounds. You’re nowhere near that. You need help and this is not a discussion. Remuda Ranch agreed to admit you, and we need to be there the day after tomorrow.” Daddy turned and left the room.
I slumped to my knees on the floor. “Please, please, please, Mom! Don’t send me away. I can’t be gone for two months. You might as well disown me. I’ll die there!”
Abby Kelly is a nomadic, military spouse writing from wherever she momentarily finds herself with her husband, their wonderful dog, Brave, and two tolerable cats.
Abby began writing in the process of recovering from a more-than-decade long eating disorder. She credits Jesus Christ for her full recovery and for filling her with a passion to encourage others to seek freedom from their own addictions and struggles.
Now, Abby writes for numerous Christian publications as well as maintains her personal blog, Predatory-Lies. In her free time, she and Brave enjoy volunteering in hospitals and schools as a pet therapy team through Pet Partners.
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Amazon Gift Card Raffle Code: a Rafflecopter giveaway
Solomon Greene made a deal with God–If He’d send him an unattractive woman, he’d marry her on sight and do what was spiritually right by God. After all, he needed an ugly wife to help him escape from his sordid past. Celeste Martin made a deal with Solomon. She’d be his ugly wife. All she wanted in return was his name. She was in love with her sister’s fiancé and he would be the only man she’d ever love. Solomon had no idea that he’d find his wife fascinating. Celeste didn’t know that one taste from her husband’s lips would have her wanting more. Yet many strange women were between them. Could Solomon ever escape from his past? Could Celeste ever love her husband?
MR. AND MRS. SOLOMON GREENE
The thought of kissing her husband was repugnant. The idea had the attraction of eating an apple with a worm in it. The longer Celeste Greene thought about it, the more distasteful it became.
“I hope you don’t intend for me to actually kiss this man, Reverend,” Celeste bit out in a carefully controlled voice.
The minister was a short black man whose gray hair had receded until his head looked like a polished teak wood surface. Dark rimmed bifocals rested on his nose and gray bushy eyebrows lifted in surprise.
“Excuse me, Mrs. Grane?” His voice was deep and rumbled like gravel shifting at the bottom of a fish tank.
“I refuse to kiss this man.”
The minister closed the Bible in his hand and pressed it against his Santa Claus belly. He cleared his throat.
“Mrs. Grane, I have married couples for a good many years. I can honestly say I’ve never heard a wife speak so about her husband. Although, the decision is yours, may one ask why you choose not to kiss your husband?”
“Because I don’t know him.”
Celeste could see the minister’s confusion as he glanced over at the tall silent man by her side. She looked at him too but only saw his profile. Her new husband reeked of unwashed body odor and alcohol, although his clothes didn’t display any hint of those noxious smells. In fact, his clothes were perfectly tailored to him, the dark blue suit with its sharp cut and the pastel colored green shirt under it gave her husband a handsome appearance.
Too bad the clothes could not do anything about his stench.
Celeste had no idea her husband had spoken until she realized his mouth moved. He still chose not to look at her but directed his statement to the minster.
“The name is Greene.”
“Yes, my wife’s new name is Mrs. Solomon Greene. With an ‘e’.”
“Indeed? Well, I do apologize for the mistake.”
Celeste folded her arms and turned fully toward her husband.
“Solomon, are you ready to sign the papers so we can get back to the hotel room?”
“Yes, Celeste. Let’s get this over with.”
A scant fifteen minutes later and Celeste felt the sun warm her face as she stepped out of the small church. Of course the June sun blazed brightly in the sky on this, the most unexpected day of her life. The snow shrouded Rocky Mountains in the Denver skyline only added to the physical perfection of the day. Why couldn’t it be rainy and gloomy? Why couldn’t lightning and thunder shake the ground to mirror the feelings that swarmed inside of her? Why should the sky be the bluest she’d ever seen it and the sound of the birds that twittered from tree to tree create a song to accompany her discomfiture?
“I appreciate that you married me, Celeste Greene,” her husband said from somewhere behind her.
She turned, her arms still folded. “It’s the least I could do.”
Gratitude welled inside Solomon’s heart as he once again realized his wife had none of the attributes he found sexy in a woman. He had hoped the woman he married would have the beauty of a gargoyle but a plain face would do just as well.
He studied his new wife. The top of her head reached his shoulder. She held her body stiff and her face remained devoid of expression. It emphasized her unattractiveness. If she never smiled at all, it would be wonderful.
She wore a peculiar outfit—a blue skirt that brushed the tops of her shoes, a blouse buttoned to her neck with long sleeves buttoned at her wrist and her hands were encased in plain white gloves. It had an old fashioned look to it, like something from the pioneer days. It obscured her figure and Solomon breathed a sigh of relief. His belief in God had been restored.
The Lord had sent an unattractive woman to be his wife. His eyes began to water and he blinked furiously. He could hardly break down and cry a bucket of tears in joy right now.
“I’ve called my driver,” he told her as a metallic glint caught his peripheral vision and he whirled his head to see a sleek black limousine Hummer turn the corner and stop in front of them.
Celeste didn’t respond. Her silence made him want to click his heels. A woman who didn’t talk incessantly had to be a godsend. Perfect!
Moments later, he sat by her side as the vehicle moved. The scenery passed and Solomon appreciated it as the light of the sun beamed on the ground. The leaves rustled as a gentle breeze wafted through them and the sight of birds as they flew by lifted his spirits. It was a lovely June day and he’d found his wife.
Parker J. Cole is a writer and radio show host who spends most of her time reading, knitting, writing, cooking, and concocting new ideas for stories. Her first novel, Dark Cherub, won Best of Spring Reading 2013 from eMediaCampaigns. She lives in Michigan with her husband and their beloved dog, Sarah.
Email Address: email@example.com
Hosted by: Write Now Literary Virtual Book Tour
Author Tour Schedule
There is a sense of urgency in the atmosphere as God is transitioning what the world has deemed impossible and unbelievable into the possible and the believable. Don’t be alarmed by the “sudden” moves of God.
Pastor Douglass and his family have been positioned for such a move but because of the dense fog of deception that seems to surround them, some in the Douglass family have created their own beliefs, fabricating their own sense of self; negating the truth, God’s truth, even when truth is staring them in the face. They, like many, are living lives devoid of the knowledge of who they really are and robbing themselves and those they love of their true identity and freedom. Deeply embedded lies from enemy have blinded eyes, impaired hearing and hardened hearts and Angels from the army of God have been deployed. The assignment: the execution of God’s divine design. Dreams, supernatural revelation and actual attacks from man’s ultimate foe will expose all and confirm God’s plan for Xion, Veronica, Zeborah, Bo and Pastor Douglas. Can they handle the truth and surrender? Will the infrastructure of unbelief crumble? The lives of the Douglass family will never be the same and neither will you, because of THE SHIFT !
M. Ann Ricks, (Melissa Ann), is a Christian Fiction novelist residing in Bear, Delaware with her excellent husband and two awesome sons. She is a graduate of Rider University and formerly a national accounts insurance executive. Using Jesus Christ as her example, as He shared many parables, she creates stories with fictional characters that contend with real life issues and inserts the Word of God to communicate the genuine and unfailing love of God while making it abundantly clear that Jesus is the ONLY answer. M. Ann is determined to tell the world how wonderfully awesome Jesus Christ is and can be in our lives if we just allow Him to be. She is honored to be used by God to spread His message with the stories she creates with the leading of the Holy Spirit, knowing that He will provide her with stories and the insight that will lift up the name of Jesus as He promised that if He is lifted up, He will draw all men to Him. She is the author Awesome Wonder: The Gift of Remembrance, The Son and THE BLOOD DONE SIGNED MY NAME.
Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Summer Rain Virtual Book Tour by Cherlisa Starks Richardson
Paperback: 250 pages
Publisher: Purple Phoenix Publishing LLC (November 27, 2013)
Sixteen-year-old Summer McClain seemingly has it all—a doting mother and father, two best friends who stick closer than glue, and a grandmother who can cook the pants off any chef who dares to go up against her. Her world is perfect in every way—until tragedy strikes the core of her family.
When Summer thinks the worst thing in her life has happened, she’s dealt more blows that make her question her young faith. Her two best friends, who should be there to love her through her devastation, have personal issues of their own, and on top of that, a girl at school starts bullying her for no reason. Will Summer be able to withstand the heartache, pain, and pressure she has to endure?
In her debut novel, Summer Rain, Cherlisa Starks Richardson has woven together a gripping novel that shows the faith even a child must have to endure when challenged with the pain life sometimes presents.
SUMMER BROWSED THROUGH the different messages posted on Facebook. Nothing new, just the same old stuff teens usually post—pictures of girls with duck lips posing in the latest fashions, boys and girls posing in the mirror holding up their phones, and corny jokes. Sometimes an occasional shot is made at some unsuspecting kid. OMG! Am I reading this right? Summer lifted her head from the headboard of her bed and pulled her iPad closer to her face. Her eyes grew wider as she stared at the screen. Maybe her eyes were playing tricks on her. She hadn’t been getting much sleep lately. She blinked to see clearer. The kids at East High had gone completely crazy. Hadn’t their parents preached the same message to them that hers drilled into her about watching what you post on the Internet? They had no shame in their game and didn’t care who got hurt when they went in on people. The ruthless words they were calling Megan on her page were enough to make even the loosest girl want to crawl under a rock.
Summer read the last comment then turned off her iPad. She’d only gotten on the Internet as a distraction to help keep her awake. She had no idea what she was getting into when she logged onto Facebook. As soon as she thought the kids at her school couldn’t get any meaner, they were taking it to a new level. She couldn’t forget the worst comment about Megan—I hope you die. You’re too nasty to live. Summer’s mouth fell open when she read it. How could anyone be that mean? Then again, why am I surprised? That was the norm at East High. Every other week there was a new target.
Granted, everyone agreed that Megan brought the name calling on herself to some extent. Rumor had it she was trying to get the attention of one of the jocks on the basketball team. Everyone was saying that when she couldn’t get his attention by flirting with him, she went so far as to join the cheerleading squad. That didn’t work, so she resorted to sending him nasty text messages. When he didn’t respond to that, she eventually made the dumb mistake of sending him the picture that made her infamous. She was posing on a bed with nothing on but her bra and panties. Who does that? That’s when everything hit the fan. The boy posted the picture on Instagram using an anonymous account. All of the kids that followed him on the account sent it to their friends who sent it to their friends until it had made its way around the entire school. The hallways were buzzing with the same question every day—who started the picture going around? Whoever the dude was, he was keeping his identity a secret.
Cherlisa Starks Richardson is a graduate of Indiana State University and also has an MBA from Indiana Wesleyan University. Mrs. Richardson is a motivational speaker and a school board member in her township. She and her family lives in Indiana. For more information, visit her website.
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Hosted by Write Now Literary Virtual Book Tour
Witness Protection Program claims they can keep anyone safe if only they follow the rules so Maria follows the rules–every rule. She’s given up everything–her friends, her family, her past, even her name to ensure her daughter has a future.
Reborn as Veronica Minor in the sleepy little town of Sunberry, Ohio, she struggles to rebuild their life amid the beauty of her flower shop. A life where her daughter can have a happy normal childhood. A life where her daughter will never know that her father was a monster.
When a child disappears, Veronica prays it has nothing to do with her past, but what if she’s wrong? Not knowing who to trust, she trusts no one…and that’s her first mistake.
No way off. No way to escape. No way to get to her daughter. Why had she ever thought a yacht was a good idea for a benefit? Maria Hammond pushed her way through the throng of partygoers towards the exit. She had to get off this yacht and get to Layla before Raymond did.
She jerked around at her husband’s voice, not believing her eyes. Raymond’s arm was snaked around Patti’s neck. Even from that distance, Maria recognized the panic in Patti’s eyes.
Maria wanted to help, but there was nothing she could do. She had to get to her daughter. It was her only chance to keep Layla safe, to keep her away from her father. Otherwise, she would never see her child again.
Maria kept moving towards the exit ramp of the yacht.
Who was this stranger she’d slept with for so many years? She’d believed he loved her when they married, but she’d been so wrong. The events of the past month proved that—and more.
“Don’t do it, Maria.” Raymond’s voice was low and guttural, in spite of the noise from the crowd surrounding them. She turned back as he moved the gun to Patti’s head. His eyes turned black with rage. The face of evil. Why hadn’t Maria seen it before? How could she have married a monster and not even known?
Her heart broken, she turned and pushed through the crowd.
No one noticed the drama happening in their midst.
Maybe, they needed to notice.
When Maria hazarded a glance back, Raymond trailed with one arm around Patti’s neck.
The other hand still held a gun, now pressed against Patti’s temple.
Patti motioned with her hand. “Go, Maria. Just go. Don’t worry about me.”
Maria pointed. “Gun. He’s got a gun!” Maria screamed, and then pointed at Raymond.
A buzz travelled through the growing crowd.
Maria kept yelling. She couldn’t do much, but she could draw attention to Raymond.
Murmuring grew louder—more partygoers panicked. People shoved and pushed as they tried to get away from the madman with the gun—her husband. Others stared and pointed.
Hatred glittered in Raymond’s eyes.
It was time to go. She’d managed to turn attention to Patti and Raymond. Surely, someone would intervene. Someone would help Patti.
Then a burning stab of pain. Her back. She turned.
Raymond’s gaze met hers. He smiled.
Another hot burst of pain. This time in her stomach.
Have to get to Layla. Her feet wouldn’t move. She swayed, and then crumpled to the deck. Her hand moved to her stomach. Wetness. Red wetness. She gasped for air. It didn’t matter how much it hurt. She had to get to her daughter. She attempted to stand, but collapsed onto the smooth wooden deck. Her cheek rested against the wood, now dirty from all the feet that had walked on it that day.
Summoning strength, she moved to hands and knees, crawling. Nothing would stop her from getting to her daughter. The world suddenly turned wavy and she fought to stay conscious.
Raymond thought he had all the power, but he’d forgotten one thing.
A mother’s love knew no limits.
Lillian Duncan…Stories of faith mingled… with murder & mayhem.
Lillian is a multi-published writer who writes the type of books she loves to read—suspense with a touch of romance. Whether as an educator, a writer, or a speech pathologist, she believes in the power of words to transform lives, especially God’s Word.
To celebrate the release of BETRAYED, the author is giving away a virtual gift basket at Tiaras & Tennis Shoes. The virtual gift basket includes a copy of her books, SERENITY SPRINGS, OHIO; DARK ALLEYS; and GEESE MATE FOR LIFE. Along with the books, a $25 Amazon gift card is included plus a few books from some writer friends. To enter the contest, simply hop on over to Tiaras & Tennis Shoes, leave a comment on the post titled CELEBRATION! Winner will be chosen and announced on February 14.