First Line Fridays 26: Annabeth's War by Jessica Greyson

/ April 13, 2018


Not much news from me: except my new Blog theme. Do you like it? I think it looks like a Wordpress theme, but I could not get the dropdown list to work, which is disappointing. It still needs some tweaking but I do like it, since I'm not likely to get a self-hosted Wordpress.org theme anytime soon. 

I finished two Kindle books this week (one was a novella, so I guess it doesn't count), and still on track for trying to clear my Kindle backlog this month. That means, when I finish one book, I work my way up my Kindle Library with the books arranged by the date added, and download ones I have not read.
There are some  books I've had on there for 3 years and more, so its really about time I got around to reading them. So the book I am featuring today is a YA Fantasy novel I got as a freebie in 2015.


With King Harold away at war Lord Raburn has his eye on the throne. Those who dare to stand in his way fall beneath his power. All but one. A girl named Annabeth. Can a common, ordinary girl, with love for king, country, and her father, achieve the impossible?

Trained by her father, a master swordsman, outlawed Annabeth has only her sword, her wits, and her disguises to keep Belterra from falling entirely into Lord Raburn's clutches. Can she rescue her captured father and Prince Alfred? Will one girl keep the kingdom from falling?
  
Of course, even though this book is not historical and not based on real events or persons, I do love the names Harold and Alfred. Good Anglo-Scandinavian names.
 
The first line from the Prologue reads:

Annabeth took a deep breath looking up at the five tall boys before her. Curling her fingers, she rubbed them against her palms, wishing she held a sword in her hand.

So that's my First Line from this week, from of the the three older books I actually have downloaded on my Kindle at the moment.

Click the meme to see what other members of the group are reading and don't forget to comment with your own first line.

https://hoardingbooksblog.wordpress.com/category/first-line-fridays/




Not much news from me: except my new Blog theme. Do you like it? I think it looks like a Wordpress theme, but I could not get the dropdown list to work, which is disappointing. It still needs some tweaking but I do like it, since I'm not likely to get a self-hosted Wordpress.org theme anytime soon. 

I finished two Kindle books this week (one was a novella, so I guess it doesn't count), and still on track for trying to clear my Kindle backlog this month. That means, when I finish one book, I work my way up my Kindle Library with the books arranged by the date added, and download ones I have not read.
There are some  books I've had on there for 3 years and more, so its really about time I got around to reading them. So the book I am featuring today is a YA Fantasy novel I got as a freebie in 2015.


With King Harold away at war Lord Raburn has his eye on the throne. Those who dare to stand in his way fall beneath his power. All but one. A girl named Annabeth. Can a common, ordinary girl, with love for king, country, and her father, achieve the impossible?

Trained by her father, a master swordsman, outlawed Annabeth has only her sword, her wits, and her disguises to keep Belterra from falling entirely into Lord Raburn's clutches. Can she rescue her captured father and Prince Alfred? Will one girl keep the kingdom from falling?
  
Of course, even though this book is not historical and not based on real events or persons, I do love the names Harold and Alfred. Good Anglo-Scandinavian names.
 
The first line from the Prologue reads:

Annabeth took a deep breath looking up at the five tall boys before her. Curling her fingers, she rubbed them against her palms, wishing she held a sword in her hand.

So that's my First Line from this week, from of the the three older books I actually have downloaded on my Kindle at the moment.

Click the meme to see what other members of the group are reading and don't forget to comment with your own first line.

https://hoardingbooksblog.wordpress.com/category/first-line-fridays/


Continue Reading


My first post in nearly 3 weeks. I have been remiss, again, and struggled to decide which book to share this week. I have already shared two of the books I am currently reading or have started. I was going to share a Historical Fiction novel I am going to start soon, but I just did not feel like doing that one. 

So instead, I'm sharing a Kindle book of a rather unusual genre. It consists of two short books written by a 12th century French monk named Guibert of Nogent. One is a spiritual autobiography, and other a short treatise on relics: one of only a few books composed by a man largely forgotten until modern times. 
The Publisher, Penguin books, have famously published many works of modern and historical literature, which I have started adding to my Kindle collection.


The first Western autobiography since Augustine's Confessions, the Monodies is set against the backdrop of the First Crusade and offers stunning insights into medieval society. As Guibert of Nogent intimately recounts his early years, monastic life, and the bloody uprising at Laon in 1112, we witness a world-and a mind-populated by royals, heretics, nuns, witches, and devils, and come to understand just how fervently he was preoccupied with sin, sexuality, the afterlife, and the dark arts. 

Exotic, disquieting, and illuminating, the Monodies is a work in which the dreams, fears, and superstitions of one man illuminate the psychology of an entire people. It is joined in this volume by On the Relics of Saints, a theological manifesto that has never appeared in English until now.


I don't think the synopsis does full justice to the book, so my 'First Line' which is actually from page 3 will allow the author to speak for himself over a distance of nearly 800 years.


"When the world stood in ignorance of God, when it lived in shadows and the shadow of death, when it kept a communal silence as the night was driving its course, whose worthy action, whose summons could compel your all-powerful Word to come down from its royal throne?
Not even the negligence of all humanity could keep you from showing mercy, so it is no wonder if you are full of mercy for one individual, even a heinous sinner."

See now why I love Medieval Literature? Such profound thoughts from a misunderstood time. 


Happy Friday and Happy reading until next week. Don't forget to click the meme to see what everyone else is reading, or share your own First Line.


https://hoardingbooksblog.wordpress.com/category/first-line-fridays/

About the Book


Title: A Loyal Heart  
Author: Jody Hedlund  
Genre: Adult medieval romance  
Release Date: March 6, 2018

He’s taken her as his prisoner. But she’s holding his heart captive. In gaining their freedom, will they lose what matters most? When Lady Olivia’s castle is besieged, she and her sister are taken captive and held for ransom by her father’s enemy, Lord Pitt. Loyalty to family means everything to Olivia. She’ll save her sister at any cost and do whatever her father asks—even if that means obeying his order to steal a sacred relic from her captor.

As Lord Pitt’s commander, Sir Aldric is in charge of the beautiful but feisty new prisoner. He has his hands full attempting to keep Lady Olivia out of trouble. When Lord Pitt throws her in the dungeon and threatens to hang her for stealing, Aldric conceives a plot to save Olivia’s life—betrothal to him.
Can Olivia give up the prestigious match her father has arranged with a wealthy marquess in order to marry a lowly knight like Aldric? And can Aldric move beyond his past mistakes to embrace love again? When loyalties are tested, they’re thrust into danger that could cost them their love and their lives.

Click here to purchase your copy!
My Review: ⭐⭐⭐

 

I have to confess to some trepidation when I signed up for this book's blog tour, because I really did not get on with with first two books in the series. I turned out to be better than I thought in terms of the story.
I agree that there is a need for clean Young Adult Romances that promote virtue and traditional values such as honour, faith and chivalry. Parents seeking such a book will certainly find it here, and I would have loved reading it when I was a teenager. There is adventure, excitement aplenty, colourful yet flawed characters, and plenty of romance.

Yet it was often hard for me to suspend my disbelief, and overlook some of the inconsistencies of history and continuity.
First off, I think this novel could have done with an editor. In one place the word 'chaff' was used, where it should have been 'chafe', and 'affected' where it should have been 'effected'.

In the first scene, the heroine Olivia did not have time to put on her gauntlets (armoured gloves for the hands), then a few sentences later, it was stated she was struck 'on the gauntlet', then only seconds later, her opponent can see her bare hands, her gauntlet having magically disappeared.
In another place, Olivia drops her dagger, which is described as 'clattering to the ground': when she was standing on a riverbank. Items dropped on grass don't clatter.

Also, something which made the battle scenes unrealistic was that a number of times, characters were either threatened with, or actually wounded by being stabbed or shot through convenient gaps or slits in their armour at the neck, and other places.
Literally, why? Why on earth would any professional soldier leave the most vulnerable parts of their body uncovered and unprotected? It defeats the whole purpose of armour. Yet it kept happening. 14th century fighting men did not leave their necks or their armpits uncovered, like the characters do here. They wore specially made pieces of plate, chain maille or a padded jacket under their armour, to protect those areas.

Second, I maintained with the previous titles, and still would like to maintain that these books are essentially fantasy or fairy tales.
I say this because a number of readers have claimed they are set in late 14th century England, but almost nothing in them bears any resemblance to the history or geography of that country. Even the disclaimer at the front of the book is completely unnecessary, since no historical figures appear in it. Apart from the names of two of the castles, Ludlow and Wigmore, in a region historically known as he Welsh Marches (the castles are located in the neighbouring counties of Shropshire and Herefordshire) everything is made up.
The use of those names and the mention of 'Welsh' people is a problem though, setting it in a historical context, and creating a certain expectation of accuracy that is not really met.

Take the landscape. Its just castles, with heath land or forest in between. Characters riding for days, and not coming across any settlements or other people. Where are the towns, villages and cities? The historical Ludlow castle is situated within 30 miles of two cities, Shrewsbury to the North, and Hereford to the South, not even including the small town of the same name which it was built within the bounds of. Castles did not exist in isolation: they normally protected something, and the food needed to come from somewhere.

Some of the other historical inaccuracies are more specific. For a start, the claim made several times that prisoners of war, especially women and children were routinely mistreated and abused by their captors. Not so. In fact, historical evidence shows that in Medieval England noble prisoners were normally treated well: allowed to go hunting, and even attend court.
There were exceptions of course: King John starved two of his prisoners to death, and hanged Welsh captives, but he became known as a bad King for a reason. Which is the point really, such treatment of noble prisoners would have been plain stupid.
It reflected badly on the reputation of their captors, deprived them of the ransom which was the main reason for taking prisoners in the first place, and put them in danger of reciprocal treatment if they were ever captured.

Second, was the political system: or rather the complete and total lack of it. Nobles constantly attacking and killing each other, which was not the norm at this period, especially not in England, which was known as one of the most stable states in Europe precisely because it was normally peaceful and not riven with internal turmoil. Nobles were supposed to bound by their oaths of fealty to the King, normally made in person at the time of his coronation.
The King was supposed to keep the nobles in check and uphold law and order. The King in these books seems to be pretty useless: he's never there, and does not deal with problems until the last minute. Or just sends his lackeys to do his bidding, by attacking and destroying other noble's castles and stealing their possessions like a bunch of Vikings, centuries after the Viking Age ended.

Maybe I am over-analyzing things, and I hope I can be forgiven for that. Its just I am rather protective of my nation's history, and hate the idea of people getting the wrong idea by reading this as a work accurate history, rather than the work of invention that it is.

And its a good fictional tale, but should not be taken as serious history. That's the point, really. Even putting aside all the above, the basic details about food, clothes plants and the like is generally authentic: although the armour was outmoded for the time.

I received a copy of this book from the author and Celebrate Lit Blog Tours. I was not required to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are my own.

About the Author

 

Jody Hedlund is the author of over twenty historicals for both adults and teens and is the winner of numerous awards including the Christy, Carol, and Christian Book Award. Jody lives in central Michigan with her husband, five busy children, and five spoiled cats.
Although Jody prefers to experience daring and dangerous adventures through her characters rather than in real life, she’s learned that a calm existence is simply not meant to be (at least in this phase of her life!).
When she’s not penning another of her page-turning stories, she loves to spend her time reading, especially when it also involves consuming coffee and chocolate.


Guest Post from Jody Hedlund

 

The Growing Need for Sweet Young Adult Romances By Jody Hedlund

This past year my youngest daughter turned twelve and entered seventh grade. And she decided that she wanted to read my books. Of course I was thrilled that she was taking an interest in my writing. But since my adult historical romances are more intense and contain some mature themes, I handed her the young adult series I’ve written.
As she started the first book, I peeked in her room a time or two to ask her how she liked it. “It’s the best book you’ve ever read, right?” I teased. “It’s okay,” she replied, teasing me right back. The true test for how much she liked the series came when she couldn’t put the book down.
She hid away in her room and read all day. Then she read the second book the next day and the third book the day after that. She never did gush over the series. But she didn’t need to. Her serious reading marathon told me all I needed to know! Then when I was writing the fourth book in the series, she asked me if she could read it early before it was published which was another testament to how much she enjoyed the series.

 “As long as you promise to say that I’m your favorite author,” I said, teasing her again. I’m happy to say that she finished A Loyal Heart just as quickly as the others. Although I’m not sure that I’m her favorite author, I’m satisfied that she loved the series.
 Even more, I’m thrilled that I could hand her sweet romances full of chivalrous qualities—like courage, sacrifice, honor, and loyalty. As she’s being entertained, she’s learning lessons about character traits that are important in relationships.
My daughter, like other young teens I’ve talked to, really enjoys medieval settings and stories. In some ways, those kinds of stories connect them to the princess fairy tales they used to love when they were little. Let’s face it, even adult readers still love stories about knights and castles and daring damsels! In a book market for teens that has grown increasingly dark, jaded, and sexual, I only wish I had more to offer my daughter and other young women. It’s my passion to continue providing wholesome, clean romances for teens, books I know will encourage and uplift as well as entertain.

How about YOU? Is there a teen reader you know who needs an alternative to what’s available in the market? I encourage you to gift them with A Loyal Heart. And make sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win the entire series that you can read, pass along, or even gift to your library.

Blog Stops

Among the Reads, March 27
books n baubles, March 28
By The Book, March 29
Genesis 5020, March 29
Book by Book, March 31
Mary Hake, April 1
Novels Corner, April 2
Remembrancy, April 3
Carpe Diem, April 5
Simple Harvest Reads, April 7 (Guest post from Mindy Houng)
Pursuing Stacie, April 8
Bigreadersite, April 8
margaret kazmierczak, April 8 (interview)
Henry Happens, April 9
Joy of Reading, April 9

 

And now... the giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Jody is giving away a grand prize of An Uncertain Choice, A Daring Sacrifice, For Love & Honor, and A Loyal Heart!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
 https://promosimple.com/ps/cb76

Regency Brides: A Promise of Hope #1 

320 Pages, March 27th, 2018, Kregel Publications 

Print and Ebook 



 Catherine Winthrop has cried out to God too many times to count. Years ago, the man who stole her heart rejected her--and she's never recovered. Now tragedy has brought him back into her life. This time it isn't her heart he's taking, it's her home and her family's good name--and she has no one to share her grief.

Jonathan Carlew's life may look enviable from the outside--wealthy, handsome, landed--but the mystery surrounding his birth has shadowed his entire life. Now as he ascends to the barony, fresh challenges await, including a scheming mama who wants him to embrace power, even at the cost of losing love. How can he remain the kind, honorable man he strives to be and still meet the demands of his new society responsibilities?

These two broken hearts must decide whether their painful past and bitter present will be all they can share, or if forgiveness can provide a path to freedom for the future.

 My Review: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

 

I discovered Carolyn Miller last year, with The Elusive Miss Ellison, the first novel of her first Regency Trilogy, and I quickly came to rank her as one of my favourite authors of Regency Fiction/
Fans and new readers alike should be delighted with this first installment in her new series, which follows a character who was mentioned a few times in the first series but stayed on the sidelines. That young lady was Catherine Winthrop, daughter of a country baron, and erstwhile friend of Lavinia Ellison.
Her story is reminiscent of that of Anne Elliot, the heroine of Jane Austen's 'Persuasion', who encounters a former suitor, years after he jilted her and left her heartbroken. 

Indeed, this novel, like its classic counterpart, has much in its favour, with the beautiful descriptions of the landscape of Gloucestershire, and the city of Bath, as well as some of the outfits worn by the female protagonists. The characters, old and new, were well-drawn, and it was lovely to see Lavinia Ellison, from the last books, finally get something she had wanted for a long time. Yet at times, I felt that there were a few too many characters to keep up with, and I struggled to remember who they all were and how they were connected. The family tree in the front helped, but did not cover everyone.


On a personal level, I think I really related to Katherine, who wanted to settle down and marry but had serious confidence issues which made her think herself unlovable, in light of my own struggle with singleness, and the theme of forgiveness was very well presented. It bears mentioning that it was connected with the faith element in the story, which was very strong. I did not feel that detracted from it, but I know some readers prefer to have such content mentioned upfront.

I do feel that the main obstacle to the romance between Catherine and Johnathan Curlew/Winthrop the hero was a little on the cliched side.
As with many romance novels, they were kept apart mostly by misunderstandings, which could have been solved, in some part, by better communication. I understand that this is central to the story, but both of them came over as a little melodramatic from time to time. Then again, even Austen's heroines could be melodramatic: Marianne Dashwood being a prime example.

My only other complaint was the occasional Americanisms and a couple of incidents towards the end which came over a little bit implausible. Those weren't enough to spoil my enjoyment of this excellent novel though.Recommended for all fans of the Regency Fiction and Inspirational Romance genre.

I signed up for the Kregel Blog Tour of this title and received a free ebook edition via Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review, and all opinions expressed are my own.
London Beginnings #2
March 6th, 2018, 328 Pages, Bethany House 
Print, ebook, and audio 

Strong-minded and independent Julia Bernay comes to London to study medicine and become a doctor--a profession that has only just opened up to women. She witnesses a serious accident, and through her quick actions saves the life of an ambitious young barrister named Michael Stephenson.

Coming from a family that long ago lost its money and its respectability, Michael Stephenson has achieved what many would have thought was impossible. Hard work and an aptitude for the law have enabled him to rise above his family's stigma and set him on the path to wealth and recognition. But his well-laid plans are upended when the accident brings Julia into his life.

Michael soon discovers he's met a woman every bit as stubborn and determined to make her mark on the world as he is. Sparks fly--but will they find common ground?

My Review:  ⭐⭐⭐

 

Thanks to the recent release of the audiobook, I got through this title in two days, but sadly there is no listing for the audiobook, so I had to use this one. I did get approved for this title on NetGalley, so I guess I have that excuse.

I think I enjoyed this book better than the last one, which I felt was rather far-fetched at the beginning. The story was interesting, and a lot of the details were interesting and well-drawn, especially about the geographical region where the story was set. Some of the details about the early days of women in the medical profession and their struggles to be accepted were fascinating. Of course, I liked the parts about Julia's Latin lessons too, as a Latin student myself, although this was a minor aspect of the story.

The romance was well done without being overwhelming or mushy for the most part (except a couple of scenes): and some of the relationships between secondary characters such as Michael's sister and brother-in-law provided more depth.

So why the lower rating? Two reasons. One was that I found Julia rather interfering. I understand that she wanted to be a missionary and help people, but her actions were not always related to that. At times, she seemed like she was trying to 'fix' everyone else's life and problems. That might work out in Fiction, but it doesn't always do so in real life.

Second: the Americanisms. In some parts of the story, there seemed to be a concerted effort to avoid American terms and phrases, but the lapses stood out. A Londoner talking about police officers on every 'block', which is not and has never been a unit for measuring distance in Britain, was one example. In other places, they used terms like 'gotten' and 'candy'.
I don't know whether the use of certain American terms was a result of deliberate editing choices to make the story more understandable for American readers or not, but I find them jarring.

All opinions expressed in this review are my own. I was not influenced by the Publisher and was not required to write a positive one.



That time of the week again! I have not been doing much in the way of actual reading these last couple of weeks, or at least not much fiction. I have just finished my second Julie Klassen audiobook, through the Audible Romance package.  That's The Girl in the Gatehouse and The Silent Governess down. 

The book I am including today is a novella, published only in e-book format (so far), which is a prequel to the upcoming full-length novel A Defense of Honor, which is due out in June. Both books mark the beginning of a new Regency romance series by Kristi Ann Hunter.  A lady who already has the 4-book Regency Hawthorne House series to her name. 

I had to to go Amazon.com to get the novella, because, for some bizarre reason, it's still not available on Amazon.uk, but is available on other ebook platforms, including Google Play books. When the full-length follow up comes in June, I will have to get used to using the American spellings in the title. We Brits spell defense with a c and put a 'u' in honour. Like that.


Margaretta Fortescue desperately needs to disappear from London society, and her only hope is to follow the rumors of another young woman who recently made a life for herself away from the glare of society. Her search leads her to the market town of Marlborough where, in spite of her efforts to avoid attention, she can’t seem to elude local solicitor, Nash Banfield.

All Nash wants is a quiet, sedate life—no risks or surprises. When Margaretta, clearly on the run and unwilling to answer questions, interrupts his solitude, his curiosity and his principles won’t let him leave this determined woman without assistance.

But will the truth of what Margaretta is running from be worth finally opening his heart up to a chance at love?


Isn't that a beautiful cover? The first line reads:

"Marlborough, England, 1804

Margaretta had used the word desperate many times in her life, but she'd never truly known the meaning  until she stood in the open door of a mail coach, clutching an eight-month-old letter and praying that someone in this minuscule market town  would know where the author had gone when she moved on"

 Good, isn't it? Although I am not sure Marlborough is that small. Now it's your turn, and don't forget to click the meme to see what others are reading. 

https://hoardingbooksblog.wordpress.com/tag/first-line-fridays/






About the Book

 

Title: Across the Blue  
Author: Carrie Turansky  
Genre: Historical romance  
Release Date: February 20, 2018

Love soars to new heights in this Edwardian romance filled with adventure, faith, and inspiration, but how much will it cost Bella and James to follow their dreams? Isabella Grayson, the eldest daughter of a wealthy, English newspaper magnate, longs to become a journalist, but her parents don’t approve.
They want her to marry well and help them gain a higher standing in society.

After she writes an anonymous letter to the editor that impresses her father, her parents reluctantly agree she can write a series of articles about aviation and the race to be the first to fly across the English Channel, but only if she promises to accept a marriage proposal within the year. When James Drake, an aspiring aviator, crashes his flying machine at the Grayson’s new estate, Bella is intrigued. James is determined to win that race across the Channel and gain the prize Mr. Grayson’s newspaper is offering.
He hopes it will help him secure a government contract to build airplanes and redeem a terrible family secret.

James wants to win Bella’s heart, but his background and lack of social standing make it unlikely her parents would approve. If he fails to achieve his dream, how will he win the love and respect he is seeking? Will Bella’s faith and support help him find the strength and courage he needs when unexpected events turn their world upside down?
Click here to purchase your copy!

 My Thoughts 

 

I have not yet finished the book. I'm nearly three quarters of the way through, its just that time constraints have prevented me from doing so. So my review is based on what I have read so far. 

The story is good, and I like the original premise about the early days of aviation and the race to be the first person to fly across the English Channel. I so like the character of James Drake, he seems to to be a pretty down-to-earth guy.  Honest and honourable, and doing an important job without much recognition. Also the Professor is an amazing character.

However, I'm not sure I really warm to Isabella, the heroine. She seems to lack depth, and her stance on marriage is pretty typical, even cliched. At times she seems like a conduit for modern opinions, with entirely unrealistic expectations. 
The stigma attached to illegitimate birth, for instance, was still considerable in the early 1900s. So James' grandparents could not realistically have allowed their unmarried daughter to keep her illegitimate son, and stay living with them. I don't believe they were unduly selfish, cruel or obsessed with their reputation for doing so. 

That was the social morality of the time. Its likely that their daughter would never have been able to find a husband in that situation, and then would have no security when her parents died.

I am enjoying the book, though, overall, and want to see how it will all be wrapped up. Of course, I was provided with an Ebook from Netgalley via Celebrate Lit Bloggers. I am not required to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are my own. 

About the Author


Carrie Turansky has loved reading since she first visited the library as a young child and checked out
a tall stack of picture books. Her love for writing began when she penned her first novel at age twelve. She is now the award-winning author of nineteen inspirational romance novels and novellas. 

Carrie and her husband, Scott, who is a pastor, author, and speaker, have been married for more than thirty years and make their home in New Jersey. They often travel together on ministry trips and to visit their five adult children and five grandchildren. Carrie leads women’s ministry at her church, and when she is not writing she enjoys spending time working in her flower gardens and cooking healthy meals for friends and family. She loves to connect with reading friends through her website, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.

Guest Post from Carrie Turansky


Following your Dreams


By Carrie Turansky

In Across the Blue, Bella Grayson and James Drake both go to great lengths to pursue their dreams. Bella longs to become a journalist and write for one of her father’s newspapers, but in 1909 England, aristocratic young women did not work as journalists. A young woman’s path was set by the unwritten rules of society. At eighteen she was presented at court, and then she took part in the London social season and hoped for a marriage proposal from a young man from a wealthy family, with an estate and title. Marriage, having children, and taking part in social and charitable events was the prescribed course for their lives.

But Bella has a different future in mind. She wants to marry for love, and she won’t settle for anything less. She also wants to write articles about the important events of the day that will inform and inspire people. She wants to be a world changer, and that is a very unique role for a woman in England in the Edwardian Era. At that time women didn’t have the right to vote yet and very few pursued any kind of career.

James is an aviation pioneer, and his dream is to build an airplane that will allow him to be the first to fly across the English Channel. This is no easy accomplishment, and he faces many challenges as he pursues his dream. Aviation is brand new. Wilbur Wright demonstrated his airplane in France the year before and stunned Europeans with his skill. With the help of his mentor, Professor Steed, James conducts experiments, refines his design, and makes countless test flights. It takes great courage and determination to overcome setbacks and make it through near-fatal crash landings, but James has his heart and mind set on perfecting his airplane and reaching his goal.

What about you? What hopes and dreams do you have for your future? What goals would you like to accomplish? As you think about your dreams and future plans I hope you’ll gain some insight from James and Bella’s experiences in Across the Blue. When they considered the cost of pursuing their dreams they realized their plans and choices impacted others as well as themselves. James and Bella believed striving for their dreams is important, but they learned it must be balanced with commitments to family and friends, and most of all a commitment to following the Lord on the path He has for them.

Following our dreams and working toward accomplishing our goals, especially those the Lord puts on our heart, is important. However, sometimes we may have to put our dreams on hold and wait for the right time and season. We don’t need to be discouraged when this happens. As we listen to the Lord and ask Him to guide and direct us He will show us the right path at the right time to follow it.
Just like James and Bella, I hope you’ll pursue your dreams but also hold them with an open hand, allowing the Lord to guide and direct you each step of the way. When you do I’m confident you’ll be headed toward seeing your dreams become reality in His time and in His way. “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord; plans to prosper you, not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

With that wonderful promise in mind, I hope you’ll enjoy reading Across the Blue and joining Bella and James as they pursue their dreams. You’re in for a high-flying adventure, romance, and inspiration, and I can’t wait to share this new story with you. Happy reading to you!

Blog Stops

 

Bookworm Mama, February 22
Carpe Diem, February 22
Blogging With Carol, February 22
Karen Sue Hadley, February 23
Christian Bookaholic, February 24
Mary Hake, February 24
Among the Reads, February 24
The Power of Words, February 25
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, February 25
Maureen’s Musings, February 26
Rachel’s Back Talk, February 26
Smiling Book Reviews, February 26
Radiant Light, February 27
Faithfully Bookish, February 27
Bibliophile Reviews, February 28
Remembrancy, February 28
Book by Book, March 1
Bigreadersite, March 1
Pause for Tales, March 2
margaret kazmierczak, March 2 (Interview)
Pursuing Stacie, March 3
Simple Harvest Reads, March 4 (Guest post from Mindy)
Baker Kella, March 5
A Greater Yes, March 6
Henry Happens, March 7

Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Carrie is giving away a grand prize of an autographed copy of Shine Like the Dawn and $30 gift card to Christianbooks.com!!
Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c987