30 July 2013

Marian Baay reviews LAST CHANCE FOR JUSTICE by Kathi Macias

Last Chance for Justice


Reviewed by Marian Baay

Travel with mother Lynn and daughter Rachel to Bloomfield—a small town where everyone knows each other and nothing is secret from your neighbours. But still there is an unsolved mystery in Bloomfield.

When Lynn inherited her brother’s house at cemetery drive in Bloomfield, she never had thought that she would also inherit her brother’s desire to solve the mystery about Last Chance Justice. Who is this Last Chance?—and perhaps even more interesting is to find out how this man got his name.

Lynn grew up in Bloomfield and left town when she got married 35 years ago. Now she's back for a couple of days to go through her brother’s belongings and to put his house on the market. But things take longer than she anticipated and meanwhile she gets reacquainted with old friends.
Her beautiful daughter attracts the attention of the young men and soon two are vying for her hand.

This was a relaxing and enjoyable read. The characters are very real and it feels like the reader is visiting and having coffee or sun tea on the porch with them. There are also some nice and interesting secondary characters. The atmosphere is relaxed and lighthearted. The mystery keeps the reader guessing—I really had no idea where it was going. So yes, I think Kathi Macias did a very nice job!

*Thanks to the publisher for sending me a review copy through NetGalley.*

You can find Kathi's books at DeeperShopping, Amazon, CBD, and other bookstores.
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GIVEAWAY: Kathi will give away a copy of this book. Answer the question to be entered in the contest and don't forget to leave your email address as well.

QUESTION: Have you read any of Kathi's books yet? If so, do you have a favorite?

28 July 2013

Interview with Kathi Macias by Carrie Fancett Pagels


Kathi Macias

Kathi Macias is the author of (The Moses Quilt, Last Chance for Justice, and The Doctor’s Christmas Quilt) and of (Emma Jean Reborn and My Son John) of more than 30 other books.

Kathi, welcome to Overcoming With God.  We appreciate your willingness to share your testimony of overcoming with our readers.

Would you tell us about the most difficult thing in your life you have had to overcome, with God’s help?
Wow, there’s been a lot, but probably the toughest was being a very young (19) wife and mom of one baby with another on the way when I was diagnosed with cancer. Doctors suggested I consider abortion, as I probably wouldn’t be able to carry my second child to term and they wanted to start aggressive treatment as soon as possible. I wasn’t a Christian then, but that’s what started me praying and seeking God. I wasn’t saved until nearly seven years later, but I refused to consider abortion and instead opted for surgery only, with no radiation or chemo treatments. Quite obviously I made it through, as did my second child, now a healthy man of 45 who is involved in law enforcement. God is faithful and had His hand on me even then, and I never cease to thank Him for that!

(CFP: Wow--PTL that God was there for you even when you weren't ready to turn to Him--and that when you did He was ready with open arms!!!)

Disability friendliness: Is this latest release available in audio format or do you have any other works available on audio?  Do your e-books have audio capability? Do you have any in large print?  
One of my novels, Obsession (from B&H), is available in large print, though I am unaware of any being available in audio—yet. However, the books I’m publishing now with Helping Hands should be available in that format soon.

In this latest work, do you have any topics useful for bibliotherapy, or therapeutic influence through reading about a disorder or situation?
Almost all of my books (fiction and nonfiction) are issues-oriented and have discussion questions included in the book (or as free downloads from the publisher). All are biblically based. As a former biblical counselor on a large Southern California church staff, I make it a point to write from that perspective and to engage the readers in thought-provoking questions for their own lives.


CFP: Thank you, Kathi, for agreeing to answer these questions.  Have a blessed day and keep on writing!! 

We encourage readers to order Kathi's New Hope Christmas book which is available for pre-order (click here.)

Giveaway:  For the interview we will be giving away the winner's choice of any of Kathi's books, from OWG blog (ebook only for international winner.)  Later in the week, Kathi will give away a copy of her books reviewed by OWG so come back for each review and leave a comment, too.
You can connect with Kathi at www.kathimacias.com or on her blog at www.boldfiction.com .


26 July 2013

The Rose of Lancaster County by Murray Pura Reviewed by Marian Baay


Reviewed by Marian Baay
~5 stars~*****

Rose Lantz and her family came to America to flee the persecution of the Amish people in Switzerland. Lydia Beiler is Rose’s best friend and together they are working on a lovely rose quilt. They often work in the rose garden where there’s peace and joy while quilting in the fragrance of blooming roses. But their happiness will soon come to an end when Lydia is accused of witchcraft and taken to jail.

Ethan Daniels is everything Rose despises—he lives like a wild man in the woods and spends a lot of time hunting in the forest. A man like that has to be avoided by her people. But after he rescued Rose and Lydia from the wrath of some Englishers in town, Rose must admit to herself he is not so bad after all. Indeed, his beautiful poetic words leave her confused and blushing—confused because she has promised to marry a young Amish farmer soon. She cannot help but enjoy all the attention Ethan is giving her, but…he is not Amish and she cannot believe he will ever change his ways and join the Amish. When her Amish fiancĂ© gives her an ultimatum, she must make a very difficult decision.

During Lydia’s trial we witness a bit of how different court was handled in Colonial America. Rose speaks up for her friend and this is when the hatred of the English community shifts from Lydia to Rose. Soon Rose finds herself in trouble with no one to help her but God…

I enjoyed The Rose of Lancaster County immensely! What a fantastic story with great characters and…oh, the romance!! Mr. Pura knows what a woman wants in a romance story and he happily pens it down for us all to enjoy.
I love how he captures female feelings like no other male author I have read. He is a master in spinning a captivating tale and this story is proof of that—he had me on the edge of my seat several times. What more can I say? From the beginning to the end – it is all Pura Enjoyment! 


This book first released in 10 e-book volumes and is now available as a complete download. 
The paperback will be out soon. My review is of the complete book.

Buy Murray Pura's books at DeeperShoppingAmazon, CBD, Barnes & Noble, or other bookstores.
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GIVEAWAY: A book by Murray Pura of your choice and format. (International winners ebook only.) 

TO DO: Like Murray Pura Writing on Facebook and put MPW in your comment when you have done so - and don't forget to leave your email address.

EXTRA NOTE: Due to health issues Marian can't reply back to all of you, but you can be sure your comments will be read! Please don't take it personally!!

25 July 2013

Marian Baay's Review for A Road Called Love by Murray Pura

A Road Called Love


Reviewed by Marian Baay
~5 stars~*****

You’ve just got to love the Amish sisters Michal and Tabitha Troyer—both in their rumspringa. On the day of Tabitha’s 16th birthday her rumspringa starts. This is also the day she decides to take off on the back of a motorcycle with her Englisher friend Nick. Everyone expected them to come back by the end of the day, but they did not return. Tabitha and Nick want to explore America on a Harley. Their parents are worried sick, but they can’t force them to come home because they are of age. Then an unexpected request is asked of Michal and her friend Milwaukee—take Milwaukee’s motorcycle and go in search of Tabitha. This is the start of a journey full of adventure and danger. While they are traveling they try to figure out their feelings about joining the Amish church and also their feelings for each other.

A journey that started out as the hunt for Tabitha becomes life changing for both Michal and Milwaukee. While they are following Tabitha’s trail, they also take time to enjoy the beauty of America.

During their journey they meet several interesting people who will help them understand Tabitha and why she really left. They also help them to find their destiny in God.
The closer they get to Tabitha the more they realize she might be in great danger. Will they ever catch up with her in time?

Wow, what a thrilling and fabulous book!—one of Murray Pura’s best writings. I enjoyed this story immensely. There was a longing inside me to join Michal and Milwaukee on their road trip. How I would love to see all of the beauty they saw!

Yes, this book is about the Amish. No, you can’t compare it with anything you have read before. Murray Pura is known for his intriguing stories and original plots. When you start reading his work you will be glued to the pages and forget everything around you!
If I was not convinced before, I am now—Mr. Pura can write any genre and write it well! I honestly hope to see more contemporary books written by this brilliant author!


This book first released in 4 e-book volumes and is now available as a complete download. 
The paperback will be out soon. My review is of the complete book.

Buy Murray Pura's books at AmazonCBDBarnes & Noble, or other bookstores.
______________________________________________________________________

GIVEAWAY: A book by Murray Pura of your choice and format. (International winners ebook only.) 

TO DO: Like Murray Pura Writing on Facebook and put MPW in your comment when you have done so - and don't forget to leave your email address.

EXTRA NOTE: Due to health issues Marian can't reply back to all of you, but you can be sure your comments will be read! Please don't take it personally!!

23 July 2013

Murray Pura's New Release "Beneath the Dover Sky" Reviewed by Marian Baay

Beneath the Dover Sky


Reviewed by Marian Baay
~5 stars~*****

In Ashton Park we met the wealthy Danforth family; Lord William Danforth, his wife Lady Elizabeth, and their seven children. In Beneath the Dover Sky we see how their lives continue.

The Danforths worry about their daughter Catherine, who lost her husband two years ago and since that time has shown no interest in the opposite sex…but that will change soon. They also worry about Kipp’s wife, Christelle, who is dealing with some health issues. Then there’s Lady Caroline, Kipp’s former fiancĂ©e, who seems to be a dangerous temptation for him.
Libby and Michael are returning from America with a surprise, but not everyone is happy with this surprise. And something dramatic will occur that deeply affects Victoria’s and Libby’s lives.

The Danforths live in a restless time when Hitler is gaining more and more support in Germany. This also affects the political decisions that must be made in Great Britain and often is the subject of conversation between Edward and his father.

The Danforths are unique! I love them all—that doesn’t mean I agree with all their decisions, but it surely makes for a very interesting read.
I learned a lot about European history in the time between WW1 and WW2. Every time Mr. Pura amazes me with his excellent research. He certainly knows what he’s writing about and you can be sure that it’s accurate.

I very much enjoyed reading this book. There were several unexpected twists and turns that literally made me gasp, and of course that kept me turning the pages…
As always Pura’s writing touches something deep inside me. It doesn’t matter if he’s writing fiction or non-fiction—God is obviously blessing his writing.


*Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy through NetGalley.*



Murray's books may be purchased through Amazon, CBD, Barnes & Noble, and other bookstores.
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GIVEAWAY: A book by Murray Pura of your choice and format. (International winners ebook only.) Answer the question to be entered in the contest and don't forget to leave your email address.

QUESTION: I asked Murray if he knew a nice question for the contest. So this is his question.
There is a scene in this book where the Nazis are burning books in 1933. Do you think they would have burned the book "Bambi" by Felix Salten? The book was actually written by an Austrian writer. The Disney movie came out in '42. 

21 July 2013

Interview with Author Tamara Fickas: Lewy Body Dementia and Loss of Parent


Tamara Fickas

Tamara Fickas is a contributor to the new nonfiction release “God’s Provision in Tough Times.”  She is the administrator of the Rocky Mountain Writer website. She writes historical and contemporary fiction and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers.

Tamara, welcome to Overcoming With God.  We appreciate your willingness to share your testimony of overcoming with our readers. 

Would you tell us about the most difficult thing in your life you have had to overcome, with God’s help? (transparency appreciated!)
Thank you for having me here on Overcoming with God. One of the most difficult things I’ve gone through is walking with my mother through Lewy Body Dementia (LBD.) Lewy is the second leading form of dementia after Alzheimer’s. It causes cognitive dysfunction, hallucinations, and Parkinson’s type symptoms.
Dad was committed to doing as much as possible for Mom, and we kids jumped in to help as much as we could. During the last ten months of Mom’s life, I was unemployed and through God’s strength, I was able to be there for Mom and Dad. 

I look back on that time with awe that in one of the hardest times of my life I could see God walking every step of the way with me. It was this time that I wrote about for my contribution to the book God’s Provision in Tough Times.

(CFP: Tammy, one of my best friends lost her father to this disorder several years ago.  I understand that is is very difficult to deal with.  What a blessing you were to your mother.)

What is your favorite bible verse and why?
Jeremiah 29:11 has always been a favorite of mine. It is comforting to know that even when life seems convoluted and messed up God knows the plan for me. I am not just wandering around lost. I can’t see what is up ahead, but God can.

What has been the most important thing you hope your readers will get from your blogs and why?
I started my Rocky Mountain Writer blog years ago when Mom was still alive. It began as a way to get the word out about LBD as well as polish my writing skills. Over the years, the blog has evolved to be more of an opportunity to share the wonder I find in everyday life.

My personal blog has been inactive for a while now as I consider what direction God wants me to take with it. Even though I’m not sure of the direction the blog is going, it is always my hope that people who read my work see how God is at work around us and are encouraged by that fact.

As you researched your manuscripts, did you learn anything that particularly touched your heart?
I am still in the process of researching my historical fiction novel, but as I read I am amazed at how hard life was for those people who came over to the new world. They could have stayed in comfort in what they knew, but they chose to come to America and tough it out to build this new nation. Makes me thankful for how easy life can be for me.

(CFP: Tammy has written an American Revolutionary War manuscript--a time of history near and dear to my own heart!)

In your work, do you share about LBD?  
My latest work doesn’t really have topics, but some of the early posts on my blog dealt with LBD and how our family coped with this disease that affects not only the person who is suffering from it, but all those around them.

Thank you Tamara for agreeing to answer these questions.  Have a blessed day and keep on writing!!

Giveaway:  A paperback or Kindle copy (outside of USA ebook only) of God's Provision in Tough Times.  Leave a comment and your email address.



20 July 2013

Review of Suzanne Woods Fisher's "The Keeper" and Audiobook Giveaway!


Paul Fisher is not the guy for Julia Lapp, even if they are promised to one another. She's finally woken up and realized his cold feet might mean something. But she's angry. And she targets  Roman Troyer, the Bee Man, as the instigator (with a little prompting from others!)

Roman is far from home, a man who roams from place to place with his bees. He has a streak of white hair announcing the trauma he's experienced because if one looks closely they'll see a handsome young man. He's not as old as some might think. Only his past has caught up with him in the form of an irascible woman who is not going to let him keep running, if she can help it. I love that Suzanne gave this bossy woman a chance to redeem herself!

Julia's winsome character and strength make her a strong heroine and her sister is a lot of fun, too. Julia has a nice character arc.

Stoney Ridge is a lovely place but so many changes have happened that the inhabitants of the Lapp farm aren't feeling too secure.  

God's will is at play.  And it may not be what Julia and Roman think it is. Lovely story, great characterization, and that fabulous Suzanne voice--what more could you ask for?

Bibliotherapy elements: Running from your past will never work--it will catch up with you. Repressed grief will come out in some way. Trying to force one's will doesn't work, either.  

Giveaway: Audible.com is having a great special right now on this audiobook by Suzanne Woods Fisher! Giving away a copy for someone to listen to. I love this particular narrator, especially for Suzanne's books.

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