Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Next Big Thing!

Let's have some fun, shall we? Join our blog hop and read about some pretty awesome authors and what they have in store for you in the future!

What is the working title of your book?
As evidenced by the picture, my title is, The Haunting of Maddie Branson.

The Haunting of Maddie Branson by Amanda Stephan

Where did the idea come from for the book? 

During the fall, a friend and I were sharing creepy stories about things that had happened to us, and she wondered if it was possible for Christians to have to deal with supernatural/unexplainable circumstances. That really made me wonder if other Christians wonder the same thing.

What genre does your book fall under? 

My book started out as a short story then morphed into a novella, and is pretty quickly becoming a full-length novel as the characters and scenes are playing out. The genre would be Christian paranormal/thriller with a twist of mystery. :)

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
For the main male character, I'd pick Tom Hiddleston or Matthew Goode. For the female lead, Amy Adams. For the not so wonderful aunt Cora, Glenn Close and for the other male character, it would probably be Ryan Gosling.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? 

Ooh, one sentence! Here it is:
Maddie Branson knew there was something different about her house. It had reached out and touched her in the deep...dark recesses of the night!
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

This one, I'm planning on self-publishing as it's a small story, but I am in the market for an agent/publisher.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript? laugh...
Actually, I'm not even finished with the first draft. These characters keep telling me their stories and their pasts. It's actually quite interesting.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

The Widow of Saunders Creek by Tracey Bateman and a little like Escaping the Cauldron by Kristine McGuire, except fiction. :)
Who or What inspired you to write this book?

I mentioned earlier that a good friend and I were chatting about Christians dealing with paranormal circumstances. She wondered if Christians deal with things of that nature, or was she a little different. According to the Bible, we wrestle against principalities and unseen powers, so I honestly believe that we can and some do.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

Some of the incidents in this story are actual happenings. Some were things I had to deal with, and other issues were dealt with by other Christian friends of mine.
Stop by these other authors' sites and leave a comment ~ trust me. You'd make their day!

Toni Nelson - Author of a fantastic memoir about her life that discusses looking at all people as children of God, "A Beggar's Purse" -

Melissa Alani - Author of a darling children's book, "God's Biggest Treasures" -

Elaine Littau - Author of Christian historical fiction who has several books that are inspiring and point people toward the grace of God.

Mukkove Johnson - Author of some fantastic children's devotionals, "Easter is All About Jesus" and "Christmas is All About Jesus"

Paul R. Hewlett and his newly released book Lionel's Christmas Adventure! 

Virginia Finnie and her newly released book Hey Warrior Kids! Grab Your Slingshot!

Lisa Tortorello who is working on, Mark the Missing Moose!
Darlene Shortridge who is working on a new story!

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Monday, March 4, 2013

The Tutor's Daughter by Julie Klassen ~ Book Review

The Tutor's Daughter by Julie Klassen

About The Tutor's Daughter

Filled with page-turning suspense, The Tutor's Daughter takes readers to the windswept Cornwall coast-a place infamous for shipwrecks and superstitions-where danger lurks, faith is tested, and romance awaits.

Emma Smallwood, determined to help her widowed father when his boarding school fails, accompanies him to the cliff-top manor of a baronet and his four sons. But soon after they arrive and begin teaching the two younger boys, mysterious things begin to happen. Who does Emma hear playing the pianoforte at night, only to find the music room empty? And who begins sneaking into her bedchamber, leaving behind strange mementoes?

The baronet's older sons, Phillip and Henry Weston, wrestle with problems-and secrets-of their own. They both remember the studious Miss Smallwood from their days at her father's academy. But now one of them finds himself unexpectedly drawn to her...

When suspicious acts escalate, can Emma figure out which brother to blame and which to trust with her heart? 

My Thoughts:
Julie Klassen is a wonderful writer that takes her readers on a gentle, love-inspiring journey.
The Tutor's Daughter is a delightful read, filled with tempestuous storms amidst wonderful Cornwall history and setting. Meet self-sufficient tutor's daughter, Emma Smallwood. Lonely after the death of her mother, she must rely upon herself to get things done as her father is near drowning in his melancholic state of mourning.
Called to tutor the twin sons of Sir Giles Weston, Emma and her father move to Cornwall, leaving her beloved home behind. Emma is cautiously happy, but realizes things aren't going to be easy. Especially when she must face Henry Weston, her father's previous student who lived to torment her. Could reconnecting with his brother, her old friend, Phillip Weston, help her through the uncomfortableness of being in a home where their reception is less than welcome? And is it possible to forgive when wrongs almost take her life during her journey to finding God's never-ending love for one of His children?

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and the characters will be a part of my thoughts for months to come. Another winner from my favorite author. This one deserves a place on my favorite books shelf. Highly recommend to those who love clean Christian fiction with a strong message of forgivenness.

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Friday, March 1, 2013

Secretly Smitten ~ Book Review

Secretly Smitten

Four different authors. Each with their own writing style, each with their own quirks, and each with their own audience ~ the result?

A fun, flirty read.
I really enjoyed this book. As an author, I'm always looking for ways to become better at my craft. Reading books is one way for me to learn. If you have a favorite author, have you ever wondered why they're your favorite? What is it about them that makes you want to read their book?

Voice. I felt like not only was I learning about the characters themselves, but gaining a glimpse into my favorite author's heads. Coble, Billerbeck, Hunter, and Hunt are a team to be reckoned with and have created a book that is a delight to read. The stories, while short, are well written, the characters are well-rounded. 
One character is shy and serious. 
Another is perky and outgoing.
Then there's mom. Can there be romance for her?
While the remaining may be a little on the weighty side, she still finds love.

Each character had her own way of dealing with things. Her own way of hiding from things, and her very own romance ~ whether she was looking for it or not!

This is a delightful book. Highly recommended!
My thanks to Thomas Nelson who provided me with a free copy in exchange for my honest review. These thoughts are my own.

About the Book:
Summer, fall, winter, spring-Smitten, Vermont, is the place for love . . . and mystery!

There's a secret in Grandma Rose's attic-a forgotten set of dog tags belonging to her first love. But David Hutchins was killed in action and never returned to Smitten. How did the dog tags end up in the attic?

The mystery intrigues Rose's three granddaughters-Tess, Clare, and Zoe-and they decide to investigate, though their mother, Anna, warns against meddling. But as the seasons turn and the mystery unravels, the three young women and their mother encounter some intriguing mystery men of their own. Has a sixty-year-old puzzle sparked something new for this close-knit family of women?

Join popular romance novelists-and real-life BFFs-Colleen Coble, Kristin Billerbeck, Diann Hunt, and Denise Hunter for four delightful intertwined tales of mystery and sweet intrigue.

Link to buy the book: 

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