21 April 2015

Bonnie Roof Reviews 'Grace Like Rain' By Julie Lessman

Grace Like Rain

Reviewed by Bonnie Roof
~5 stars~*****

From the pen of award-winning author Julie Lessman comes the beautiful novella sequel to The Heart of San Francisco series of the McClare family: "Grace Like Rain". The story that many readers have been waiting for, that of son Blake, "the Rake", McClare - Jr. Associate Counsel in his uncle Logan McClare's law firm, and Blake's assistant, Patience Grace "Gracie" Peabody. 

Set in 1905 San Francisco, "Grace Like Rain" begins with a literal bang - of thunder - prompting Patience's spill of hot coffee on Blake,  who is attired in a white shirt. The recurring episodes of spilled coffee, between the two, are but one touch of humor in this delightful story: you'll laugh at the antics of Miss Behave, the parrot; the articulate manner and bottle-thick glasses of 7 year old Eugene Horatio Templeton - a blind "old soul in a child's body" - will make you smile and steal your heart. All of your favorite McClare family members are back: Uncle Logan and wife Caitlyn (Blake's mother), sisters Alli and Meg with their mates, Nick and Bram, cousin Cassie and mate, Jamie, baby sis Maddy and housekeeper Rosie.

While Blake becomes more aware of the beauty and wonderful qualities of his assistant, of 2 years, in "Grace Like Rain", Patience has carried a "hidden" torch for him for some time - yet not letting herself think in terms of a romance due to his lack of faith in God. His playboy reputation is another deterrent to a romantic relationship, especially in the eyes of her grandfather/guardian, Arthur Peabody, retired judge and Logan's former Board of Supervisor peer.

Julie's trademark writing style with it's beautiful family scenes and endearing flawed characters - redeemed by a loving God, abundant passion, heart-throbbing twists, humor and romance, are each present in "Grace Like Rain". It will entertain and inspire, prompt laughter and tears, an unexpected story twist will have you on the edge of your seat - the novella's only downside: I didn't want it to end. Another winner for Julie - with a touching connection to it's title, in the ending - "Grace Like Rain" receives much more than a 5 star rating from me!!

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This lovely novella may be purchased through Amazon.
         
In addition to an ebook giveaway of With This Kiss collection from OWG, Julie Lessman has generously offered a choice of any ONE of her books (choice of format) to one blessed commenter this week!

70 comments:

  1. Great review Bonnie!! I loved this story by Julie! She is so adept at creating real as life characters!

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    1. Thank you, Carrie!! I have loved the characters in each, and every, book Julie has written - as you commented, she is a master at creating "real as life" characters. The emotion, trials, and passion of those flawed characters redeemed by a loving God - has me both laughing and crying before the end of each book, I am always inspired by their stories!!

      Continued prayers for pain/healing/recovery, Carrie!! Hugs!!

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    2. Thanks SO much, Bonnie, for the fabulous review, and thanks to Carrie for posting it and reading it too! I just got back into town from seeing my grandkids, so I am WAY behind on emails and FB, but am trying to catch up now.

      Will promo this post IMMEDIATELY, however, so BLESS YOU, GIRLS!!

      HUGS,
      Julie

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    3. It's always my pleasure to review one of your novels/novellas, Julie, I love them so!! Thank you for: your - always - sweet, loving comments to all of us at OWG, taking the time to comment, sharing the post, and writing Blake's beautiful, inspiring story!! Love you!!

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  2. Thank you for the awesome review, BONNIE! Who doesn't love a Julie Lessman story?!

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    1. Truer words never spoken, Diana - "who doesn't love a Julie Lessman story??" Those McClares and O'Connors are like part of my family - love everything Julie has written, and always so excited with a new novella/novel from her!! Thanks for your kind comments!!

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  3. LOL, Diana ... I can give you a few names along with some pretty nasty reviews, but we won't go there ... ;)

    Thank you ALL for your incredible support -- you are truly "angels" like Bonnie calls you all.

    Hugs!
    Julie

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    1. No, don't go there. They obviously weren't in their right minds. :P Oops, did an angel just say that? lol You're amazing, JULIE -- we love you!

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    2. Angels are occasionally allowed their moments, also, Diana, lol!! However, I emphatically agree with you- "they obviously weren't in their right minds". Julie is one masterful, inspiring writer/author - hard to fathom anyone not loving her novels/novellas!!

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  4. A great review! Sounds like a wonderful story, a must read! :)

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    1. Thank you so much, Wendy!! If you haven't read any of Julie's novels/novellas, you're in for a treat. Each one is special and inspiring, and filled with such endearing characters. "Grace Like Rain" is no exception. Thank you for stopping by and commenting, if you would like to be entered for the book giveaways - please give us your e-mail address so we can contact you, if you are the winner.

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  5. Julie Lessman is not only a phoenomenal writer because of the creativity and choice vocabulary she strings together, but because she loves the Lord so fully that she is able to combine the human struggle and a life passionately in love with God all under the genre of Christian Romance. My life is better because of Julie ;) I praise God for you!

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    1. Oh, WOW, I don't plan to hi-jack Bonnie's comments today, but I just HAD to respond to this one. BLESS YOU, Unknown for your kind words because every author hopes and prays that the spiritual insight they attempt to infuse into their books (and which they learned the hard way) will actually touch someone's life. I praise God for YOU (AND the OWG angels!!). :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    2. Amen, Unknown!! I couldn't agree with you more - it is Julie's deep love for the Lord that first caught my attention, before I even read any of her writing. So much of an author, personally, enters into his/her writing - I just knew I would love her books before I read the first one. I love that she portrays human struggles, illustrated by God's faithfulness in working them to the good of His followers. My life is also better because of Julie and her writing, she and her books are always such an inspiration - she is one of God's blessings.

      Thank you for your beautiful comments!! Please leave us an e-mail address if you would like to be entered for the book giveaways, we will then be able to contact you if you are the winner.

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    3. Julie, you can "hi-jack" my comments any time you want - you always bring joy, encouragement, and inspiration with yours!!

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  6. Not only does it sound like good reading, it looks so pretty, too!

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    1. Aren't the e-Books presented in a beautiful way, Carolyn?? Gets you in the mood for Spring, doesn't it?? The With This Kiss Historical Collection, in which Julie's "Grace Like Rain" appears - is a set of 5 novellas, by 5 different authors, being given away by Overcoming With God. Julie, also, is generously contributing a choice of any of her novels/novellas to one commenter - in their choice of format, some are available in both e-Book and paperback.

      I've enjoyed each of Julie's books so much and want everyone to have the pleasure of reading them!!

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    2. Just noticed you didn't leave your e-mail address, Carolyn. If you would like to be entered in the giveaway, please leave us an e-mail address so we can contact you if you are the winner. Thanks!!

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  7. "Unknown" above is Meg Raby :) My email address is megraby@gmail.com

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    1. Thank you so much, Meg!!

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    2. MEG!!!! OH. MY. GOODNESS ... how fun that you came by to leave a comment!! I miss you, girl, and hope and pray we can connect some time this year. SO excited Amy gets to see you soon!! :)

      HUGS!!
      Julie

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  8. While I have yet to read any of Julie Lessman's books, I am very much interested in all Christian fiction writers. Especially historical fiction. Please consider me for this giveaway. I am looking forward to reading this book and I have A Passion Most Pure on my tablet to read when I am done with the book I am currently reading. Thanks for your kind attention and say hi to Julie for me.

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    1. Oh, Debbie - you are in for such a treat when you read "A Passion Most Pure". Julie will reel you in "hook, line, and sinker" with the O'Connor family. Trust me, you will want to read each of the other novels she has written - so start saving your pennies, lol. There are 5 other novels after, "A Passion Most Pure" (3 each, in The Daughters of Boston and Winds of Change series) , each featuring a sibling of the O'Connor family, in addition to "A Light in the Window" - the story of the parents, a separate novel. "Grace Like Rain" is a novella, the story of Blake, a sibling in the McClare family - featured in the 3 novels from Julie's The Heart of San Francisco series. All 10 are beautiful, inspiring novels, you will love both families. Thanks for commenting and your interest in Julie's novels/novellas. Please stop by again soon - we have wonderful giveaways every week!!

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    2. DEBBIE!! I am soooo excited you are starting with APMP -- do let me know if you like it, okay? And if not ... uh, never mind. ;)

      MEGA HUGS to Bonnie for her sweet comments and to you, Deb, for reading APMP. :)
      Julie

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  9. Although I have not yet read any of Julie Lessman's books, they are on my "to read" list. Looking forward to reading them. Thanks for sharing this review. :)

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    1. Sydney, you have no idea what you've been missing - however, you will now have the pleasure of reading each of Julie's beautiful novels, back-to-back. What a treat, I know - without a doubt - you will want them all, lol. Thanks for commenting!!

      Please leave an e-mail address if you would like to be entered in the giveaway - in case you win!!

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  10. It sounds like a great story! This was a wonderful review! :)

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    1. Thank you so much, Darla!! I love writing reviews on beautiful stories I enjoy, and you will love reading "Grace Like Rain" - it is wonderful!!

      Please leave your e-mail address, if you would like to be entered in the giveaways - so we will know how to contact you, if you win.

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  11. I was always annoyed by Blake's playboy attitude in the other books he was a minor character in... so I'm looking forward to seeing things from his point of view! I love novellas that are companions to other books I've read :) Thanks for the giveaway!

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    1. Hi, Heidi!!

      Yes, Blake's playboy attitude in the 3 novels of The Heart of San Francisco series might annoy some readers, however, I think you will fall in love with him after reading "Grace Like Rain". Julie has a knack of turning those "bad boys" into such loveable creatures via God's love!!

      I love companion novellas, also!! Julie has written 3 beautiful novellas, with a promise of others!! Thanks for your comments!!

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  12. I love the title of the book, "Grace Like Rain", pouring down from Heaven on those who name Jesus, as their Lord and
    Savior.
    Janet E.
    von1janet(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Oh, Janet, then you should check out the incredible video by Todd Agnew, who wrote a song titled "Grace Like Rain," because it is AMAZING!! Here it is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubyVHdvVMnc

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    2. Isn't "Grace Like Rain" a beautiful title and vision, Janet?? You will love the ending to Julie's novella and it's amazing tie-in to the title. If you haven't yet read any of Julie's books - you will be inspired by each of them, that Grace is always a feature in them. Enjoy the video - and the novella!!

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  13. I have to say that I hated this story and love the story. No, I didn't hate the story because of anything in it. It is the end of the series: The Heart of San Francisco. This is a beautiful story about the love of a good woman and the man whom her loves helps to redeem. It is an amazing story that ties-in beautifully with series and gives us the ending that Blake "the Rake" McClare deserves. -DeAnn

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    1. And just to clarify. I love this story, but I hate that The Heart of San Francisco series is ended.-DeAnn

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  14. You are so right, DeAnn - I always love the families in Julie's novels so much that I hate to see each series come to an end. However, that's the wonderful thing about these follow-up novellas. They give us a chance to go back and revisit the families, briefly. A delightful ending to Blake's story, yet, you never know what wonderful stories are yet floating through Julie's masterful literary mind. I venture a guess there will be more novellas, Julie has promised books about the O'Connor cousins, eventually - perhaps she will revisit the McClare family members, also. I'm thinking books on the McClare siblings in their married lives - with children - might be fun. Wondering how Logan would take to a house full of babies, lol??

    Thanks so much for your insight on Blake's story - if you already have "Grace Like Rain", and would like the opportunity to win another of Julie's books, please leave your e-mail address so we can contact you, if you win.

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    1. Aren't novella collections great, Mary?? In this instance: 5 eBook novellas by 5 award winning and best selling authors for one low price - the perfect way to try new authors' writing, or add to the collection of your fave authors. Julie's "Grace Like Rain" is a beautiful story - I know you will love it!!

      Thanks for commenting - if you would like to be entered in the giveaway, please leave your e-mail address so we can contact you, if you are the winner!!

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  16. Oh, I love Julie's stories! I haven't gotten around to reading the Heart of San Fransisco series yet, but I am really looking forward to it. Thanks for the review and giveaway! momrain(AT)aol(DOT)com

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    1. I love them, also, Loraine - EVERY one of them. I didn't know how I would feel about the McClare family in The Heart of San Francisco series, after loving the O'Connor family so much in their 7 novels - however, I fell in love with the McClare's too, and feel you will also. Although The Heart of San Fran series is a bit lighter - more humor and less passion - than Julie's other series, each of the trademark elements she is known for from her other novels is in the San Fran series, also. She has a way of stealing our hearts with those wonderful families of hers!! Thanks for taking the time to read and comment!!

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  17. I've read and loved all of Julie's other books so am looking forward to reading Blake's story. Thanks for the great review of Grace Like Rain and the chance to win it.

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    1. You're so welcome, Pam!! It's fun to meet fellow readers who love Julie's writing, you will love Blake's story.

      Please stop by the Overcoming With God blog again soon - also, please leave your e-mail address so we can contact you if you are a winner of one of Julie's books!!

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  18. Loved your review Bonnie, and loved the story, the romantic tension, the emotions, characters, Julie, everything!!! I have a bad headache atm so you'll have to excuse my lack of creative commenting lol. Hugs, Bonnie & Julie!

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    1. Oh, Noela, I hope it's better by now, my friend! Saying one for you. :)

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    2. Thank you so much, Noela!! I agree that "everything" about "Grace Like Rain" is beautiful - but then, I feel that way about each of Julie's other novels/novellas, also. They always steal my heart!! I so appreciate your taking the time to comment when you don't feel well, saying a prayer for healing. Hugs, dear Noela!!

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  19. BONNIE what a marvelous review, sorry I am late dropping in, but you know the week I've had with Carlton. I just finished reading this amazing story and almost have my review finished as well!

    I have loved JULIE's books since the day I discovered Faith and Collin's story. There is no one quite like our beloved JULIE when it comes to being able to make your heart sing after reading one of her books!. :-) Even though GLR is a novella it is still overflowing with all the things we have come to look forward to in JULIE's books!

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    1. Love the comment about Julie's books making one's heart sing, Teresa!! So true - their inspiration makes my soul sing, also. Like you, I fell in love with her books from the very first one - the novellas are just as beautiful and inspiring as her novels, I just never want them to end, lol. God has given her such a masterful writing gift, and she always uses it to praise Him. Thanks for your sweet comments, continued prayers for Carlton!!

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    2. Aw, Teresa, you never fail to make me smile and tear up at the same time, my friend -- thank you for your kind comment AND your precious friendship. I'll tell you what, you ladies are ALL a wealth of beautiful friendships, and I thank God for OWG!!

      Hugs,
      Julie

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    3. And OWG thanks God for you, Julie!! Your comments always "light up the page", and your writing is an inspiration to all. Teresa does bring love and encouragement with her words, as do all the ladies here at OWG - I am blessed to share their friendships and be associated with them on OWG!!

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  20. I enjoy Julie's storytelling and look forward o read this series. A wonderful article and thnk you for this opportunity!

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    1. It's a wonderful collection, Juanita, and you will love "Grace Like Rain". Julie has a distinctive writing style with beautiful passion that speaks to the reader!! Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate your comments.

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    2. Juanita, I just wanted to take this moment to thank you for ALL the times you share my posts on FB -- you are a blessing, and I just wanted you to know, okay?

      Hugs!!
      Julie

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  21. What a fabulous review! The novella sounds fabulous. Julie is such a gifted storyteller! Thanks for the info and giveaway.

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    1. So happy you enjoyed my review, Susanne - I especially appreciate your comments, knowing you are an author also. Julie is definitely gifted in storytelling, I know she relies on God 's input for those stories - making them even more special to me!! You will love "Grace Like Rain", Blake's "story". Thank you for stopping by OWG, please do so again very soon!!

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  22. Not only do I love Julie Lessman's writing, but this review of " Grace Like Rain" makes me love her book even without reading it! I can imagine the interplay of Blake and Gracie from the first coffee spill, laugh at the antics of Miss Behave and marvel at 7 year old Eugene. And I definitely want an introduction to the McClare family! Love fictional family series books, one can almost sit down & feel right at home :-)
    Thank you for the chance at another great book by Julie!

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    1. Such a sweet comment, Trixi, thank you so much!! I'm so happy my review accomplished it's purposes - that of letting everyone know just how delightful and inspiring "Grace Like Rain" is, prompting the desire to read it, and to emphasize the scope of Julie's masterful writing ability, to anyone who hasn't read any of her novels/novellas.

      If you haven't read The Heart of San Francisco series, introducing the beautiful McClare family, you are missing a huge treat. "Grace Like Rain" will whet your appetite, making it a surety you will also want to read "Dare to Love Again", "Love at Any Cost", and "Surprised By Love". The characters in Julie's novels/novellas definitely become almost like members of the family - to readers, they are so realistic.

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    2. Leaving my email in case you need it:

      teamob4 (at) gmail (dot) com

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  23. Love the title Grace LIke Rain…how did you come up with that, Julie? Sounds like a wonderful historical I'd like to read.

    Gail Kittleson

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    1. Hey, Gail, Amazing Grace has always been one of my favorite songs, so I knew I wanted the word "grace" in the title. I played around with a lot of titles such as The Rain of Grace, Sea of Grace, The Beauty of Grace
      The Tears of Grace, The Touch of Grace, Grace Like Tears, and The Clean Scent of Grace. But then they played "Grace Like Rain" at my church one Sunday, and I immediately fell in love with it, so I used it for this story and credited Todd Agnew, the original writer of the song "Grace Like Rain" in my credits.

      Hugs!
      Julie

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    2. Isn't it a beautiful title, Gail?? The story is just as beautiful, the tie-in to the title in the ending is touching. I know you will enjoy reading "Grace Like Rain", thanks for commenting!!

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  24. I know I would love this book! I have most of them! Thanks for the opportunity to win one!

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    1. Well, we certainly agree on our love of Julie's novels/novellas, Brenda!! I'm always happy to meet other readers who share a love of Julie's writing. Thanks for stopping by OWG, please drop in again soon - we have giveaways every week, spotlighting many wonderful Christian authors.

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  25. I've only read the first book in the Heart of San Francisco series, but I'm sure I would enjoy this one just the same!

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    1. Hi, Patty!! Yes - you will love "Grace Like Rain", without reading "Dare to Love Again" and "Surprised By Love". However, I'm betting Grace Like Rain" will entice you to continue your revisit to the McClare family by reading the other 2 novels ASAP, lol. Thanks for your comments, and good luck.

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  26. Bonnie, this review is fantastic!! I can't begin to tell you how much I want to read this novella. Julie, you're writing is FANTASTIC and I can't wait to read about Blake. My absolute favorite fiction author! Thanks for the chance to win!!
    Blessings,
    Nicki

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    1. Thank you for your sweet comments, Nicki - I really appreciate them!! You will love the beautiful changes in Blake, wrought through the masterful "pen" of Julie and a loving God. Blessings to you, as well - please revisit us at OWG soon.

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    2. WOW, NICKI ... I'm not responding to most comments, but just HAD to respond to yours to THANK YOU for your incredibly sweet comment -- you know how to make a girl's day, I'll tell you that!

      Hugs, my friend, and GOOD LUCK in the contest!
      Julie

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  27. Great review Bonnie. Julie's books always gets rave review. Or, most always. And would love to be able to choose one of her books. I've got some paperbacks and some on my Kindle. Thanks for the giveaway.
    Maxie > mac262(at)me(dot0com ,

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