Book Review | The Courtship Basket by Amy Clipston

OK . . .

I am LOVING this new series by Amy Clipston.

It seems everywhere I look lately, there’s another story about something that spans time . . . family . . . even strangers – to bring people together.

Amy Clipston has a singular talent for writing a wide array of exceptional romance stories . . . from the forbidden to the sweet & simple.

The Courtship Basket is one such romance. Our story focuses on a special basket that brings a happy ever after to at least one couple – maybe more . . .

 

I can’t wait to read her next book!

I received this book free for an honest review.

Review ©JCMorrows 2016

More about “The Courtship Basket” from Goodreads:

Years ago, a picnic basket brought two hearts together. For Rachel and Mike, history may be about to repeat itself.

Rachel Fisher is devastated when the young man she’s loved for years leaves her to date her best friend. Her heart is broken, and she has all but given up on love. Rachel is determined to keep her mind off the pain, and she starts teaching at an Amish school for children with learning disabilities.

Since his father became ill, Mike Lantz has been overwhelmed with the responsibility of providing for his family and caring for his six-year-old brother, John. When John joins Rachel’s class and she learns that his mother is deceased and his father sick, she desperately wants to help the family, even with something as simple as a meal.

With her parents’ old picnic basket, Rachel begins sending food to the Lantz family. As the weeks go by, John’s grades start to improve, and the attraction grows between Rachel and Mike. They can’t deny that their friendship is growing toward something more, but both of them are hesitant to risk a more serious relationship. The last thing Rachel wants is another heartbreak, and Mike is worried about providing for his loved ones. Will the two be able to reconcile their past hurts with new hope for the future?

You can learn more about Amy Clipston and her novels HERE!

Enjoy it!

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below. I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

God Bless You!

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Book Review | The Forgotten Recipe | Amy Clipston

Another FANTASTIC story from the amazingly talented Amy Clipston!

Leave it to Amy to show us the depth of emotion that tragedy will uncover in humanity.

The future looks perfect for Veronica Fisher until an accident changes her life… forever.

And then there’s Jason – who wishes he could find a way to comfort Veronica… if only it were so easy.

This is a very different type story than any other I’ve read by Amy and I am intrigued by this new series. I can hardly wait to read more!

Don’t MISS IT!

 

More about The Forgotten Recipe:

After losing her fiancé in a tragic accident, Veronica Fisher finds solace in the old recipes stored in her mother’s hope chest — and in a special visitor who comes to her bake stand to purchase her old-fashioned raspberry pies.

Veronica Fisher knows how lucky she is to be marrying her best friend. Seth Lapp is kind, hardworking, and handsome — but most importantly, he loves Veronica.

When an accident on the job steals Seth away from her, a heartbroken Veronica is certain she will never love — or be loved—again. Yet when she discovers a batch of forgotten recipes and opens a bake stand to sell her Mammi’s raspberry pies, Veronica picks up a regular customer who gives her heart pause.

Jason Huyard was with Seth when he lost his life — a memory that haunts him still. So when he seeks out the grieving fiancée to convey his condolences, the last thing he expects — or wants — is to fall in love. Nonetheless, Jason soon finds himself visiting Veronica’s bake stand every week . . . and it’s for more than the raspberry pies.

Now, as Veronica’s heart thaws, Jason can’t bring himself to tell her he was there when Seth died. Can he ever reveal where he was on the day her life derailed? Or will his secret rob them of the second chance at love they both want?

 

Review © JCMorrows 2015

Book 4 in Amy Clipston’s Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series releases TODAY!

A Simple Prayer is the long awaited 4th novel in Amy Clipston’s “The Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel” series and it releases TODAY! Yes, I got an early look! I LOVE being a book reviewer!

A Simple Prayer by Amy CLipston

This has been one of my absolute favorite series!

In A Hopeful Heart, Hannah met Trey… and had to face a very hard decision.

In A Mother’s Secret, single mother, Carolyn (not something you typically read in an Amish novel by the way) the love of her life… it just takes some time to figure that out.

Their story is continued in “An Amish Cradle” – in Amy’s novella: “A Son for Always” by the way…

In A Dream of Home, we meet our most unlikely couple and we get to watch them go through such an unexpected courtship. It’s so very exciting!

The final book in this series is every bit as wonderful as the other three…

And what a powerful story.

Amy has a particular talent for writing characters who are so beautifully flawed. I’m not just talking about Linda Zook either…

You’re not going to want to put this book down!

Come watch the sparks fly between Linda Zook and Aaron Ebersol. You won’t want to miss a second of the show.

And those aren’t the only sparks in this story – There is quite a bit of friction between Aaron and his brother Solomon as well.

You won’t regret it!

Happy Reading!

Review © JCMorrows 2015

5star

 

Here is what Zondervan has to say about A Simple Prayer:

Life has taken much from Linda Zook. Now she dares to hope for a chance at love and a new beginning.

Linda Zook, 32, works part-time at the Lancaster Grand Hotel. As the sole survivor of a buggy accident that left her orphaned at age four, she was raised by her unwilling Uncle Reuben. Linda longs to be worthy of someone, but the life-long effects of her injuries and her upbringing under the care of her embittered uncle have destroyed her self-worth.

Aaron Ebersol, 32, left the Amish community 17 years ago when he could no longer bear the restrictions or the constant tension with his father. He d written too many unanswered letters to his mother and found himself incapable of putting down any roots in his new home in Missouri. Success in work could not replace the family that denied Aaron, even after all of these years.

Aaron hastily returns to the Amish community of Paradise, PA, after receiving word of his mother’s stroke. Hesitant to get too close to the family he was once a part of, he decides to stay at the Heart of Paradise Bed & Breakfast. He soon encounters Linda, working there part-time, and they begin to develop a friendship.

Aaron’s return allows him to reconnect with his family as he jumps into home improvement projects, hoping to make his parents house more accessible to his handicapped mother. But before long, he is enraged to learn that his brother, Solomon, had hidden all of Aaron’s letters to their mother.

Linda and Aaron must each learn to forgive the family members who have deceived and forsaken them. And Aaron must also show Linda that she is worthy of his love.

 

Click the links below to find more info and or to buy the book

GOODREADS   ZONDERVAN   AMY CLIPSTON’S WEBSITE

AMAZON   CBD   BARNES & NOBLE   ITUNES

 

GOD BLESS

and

HAPPY READING!

 

I received the book free in exchange for an honest review.

 

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

A SPECIAL BOOK CLUB HOSTED by Amy Clipston | Featuring “A Dream of Home”

Over the last three weeks, AMY CLIPSTON has hosted a special book club! We are re-reading the books in her Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series as we count down to the release of book #4:

A Simple Prayer 

 

Amy is hosting the last of her SPECIAL Facebook chat parties on her Facebook Author page this Tuesday!

JOIN US!

Here’s a look back at book 3…

Have you read it?

It’s definitely a one-of-a-kind story! Don’t miss it!

God Bless You!

Moving to Pennsylvania wasn’t in Madeleine’s original plans. She should still be in California and should have married her pilot fiance a year ago-but death has a way of changing everything.

Now the former Air Force flight nurse is living alone in Paradise, Pennsylvania, and working as a maid at the Lancaster Grand Hotel. She isn’t exactly a widow . . . but she sure feels like one.

Saul Beiler isn’t exactly a widower . . . but his wife is long gone. His eleven-year-old daughter, Emma, doesn’t know that her mother fled the Amish community-and married another man-but she does know that her dat is lonely, and that a pretty young maedel just moved in next door.

Madeline’s numb heart begins to thaw as she spends more time with the innocent and ever optimistic Emma. The stronger her friendship grows with the young girl, the more intrigued Madeline grows about the humble, strong, man raising her on his own.

But even as a strange attraction pulls Saul and Madeleine across a stark cultural divide, they-and everybody else-have to wonder: What could they possibly have in common besides heartache? Will love allow Madeleine to finally find the home she’s been dreaming of all along?

 

 

You can find more information HERE at Amy’s website, along with links that will point you to where you can purchase the book.

You can read my review: HERE HEREHERE or HERE

 

HAPPY READING AND GOD BLESS!

~ JC

 

Review © JCMorrows 2014

A SPECIAL BOOK CLUB HOSTED by Amy Clipston | Featuring “A Mother’s Secret”

Over the next three weeks, AMY CLIPSTON will be hosting a special book club! We are re-reading the books in her Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series as we count down to the release of book #4:

A SIMPLE PRAYER

 

Each Tuesday, Amy will be hosting a SPECIAL Facebook chat party on her Facebook Author page!

JOIN US!

Here’s a look back at book 2…

Have you read it?

It still may be my favorite of the series — even as wonderful as books 3 and 4 are…

God Bless You!

In A Mother’s Secret—the second book in a wonderful Amish series by bestselling author Amy Clipston—Carolyn Lapp dreams of marrying for love. But will the errors of her past destroy this dream forever?

Carolyn Lapp longs to have a traditional Amish family. But she lives on her brother’s farm with her parents and her 15-year old son, Benjamin. Carolyn has never revealed the identity of Benjamin’s father and lives daily with the guilt and shame of her youthful indiscretion. Her brother simply will not forgive her. His answer is to arrange a practical marriage for Carolyn to Saul, a widower with a little girl. But Carolyn isn’t convinced that Saul really loves her and believes he is simply looking for someone to help raise his daughter.

When Benjamin causes trouble at a local horse auction, horse breeder Joshua Glick decides that he must be taught a lesson. Carolyn and Joshua are unmistakably drawn to each other, but Joshua mistakenly assumes that Benjamin is Carolyn’s brother. Carolyn fears that if he discovers the truth, her past will destroy their budding romance.

After years of shame and loneliness, Carolyn suddenly has two men vying for her attention. But which of them will give her the family—and the unconditional love—she’s longed for?

 

 

You can find more information HERE at Amy’s website, along with links that will point you to where you can purchase the book.

You can read my review: HERE HERE or HERE

 

HAPPY READING AND GOD BLESS!

~ JC

 

Review © JCMorrows 2014

A SPECIAL BOOK CLUB HOSTED by Amy Clipston | Featuring “A Hopeful Heart”

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Over the next three weeks, AMY CLIPSTON will be hosting a special book club! We are re-reading the books in her Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series as we count down to the release of book #4:

A Simple Prayer 

 

Each Tuesday, Amy will be hosting a SPECIAL Facebook chat party on her Facebook Author page!

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JOIN US!

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Here’s a look back at book 1…

Have you read it?

It’s a WONDERFUL book, a very moving story!

God Bless You!

In Hopeful Heart—the first book in the Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series  by bestselling author Amy Clipston—Hannah Glick, a recently widowed Old Order Amish woman, struggles to support her three children after unexpectedly losing her husband. When she meets a nice Englisher (non-Amish man) at the luxury hotel where she works, her world is turned upside down while she tries to decipher God’s plan for her.

 

 

You can find more information HERE at Amy’s website, along with links that will point you to where you can purchase the book.

You can read my review: HERE HERE or HERE

 

HAPPY READING AND GOD BLESS!

~ JC

 

Review © JCMorrows 2013

It’s RELEASE DAY! | A Look Back at “An Amish Cradle” by Beth Wiseman, Amy Clipston, Kathleen Fuller and Vannetta Chapman

YES, I am posting my review again because this book is JUST THAT Awesome!

Plus I originally posted it two weeks ago and release day is TODAY!

An Amish Cradle is another wonderful collection of fabulous stories by four amazing authors!

 

I LOVE THESE BOOKS SO MUCH!

I have every single one – yes, you read that right – every single one of the anthologies in this series of books.

 

It started as a bit of a fluke. I picked up the An Amish Christmas at our local used book store one year. And then I signed up to review one with BookLook bloggers and the rest, as they say, is history. As I am a notorious book collector, I had to have them ALL!

I enjoy SO MUCH these extra stories put together by several authors whom I just LOVE! And I especially LOVE IT when one of them is kind of a BONUS story!

As far as I can tell (I haven’t read everything Kathleen Fuller or Beth Wiseman has written), Amy Clipston’s is the only story in this collection that fits that description but that’s enough for me!

I have not rewritten the review below but I have added little thing in here and there.

 – In His Father’s Arms by Beth Wiseman – 

Down Syndrome has got to be one of the toughest subjects to write about and I applaud Beth Wiseman for, not only doing it, but doing it well! It’s always difficult to understand God’s will in these situations and I love how Beth shows us that – Amish or not – these parents have to deal with the situation as a mother and father.

Bravo Beth for showing that it’s not easy for the Amish just because of their faith.

 – A Son for Always by Amy Clipston – 

OK… I admit it. This is my favorite story in the book! And that’s really saying something because they’re all so fantastic! Carolyn and her husband Joshua are two of my favorite characters from Amy’s Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series.

I don’t know how Amy did her research for a single mom but she certainly nails it right on the head! And anyone who says that Amy went overboard with Carolyn’s emotions in this novella can not have ever been a single mother.

This story is PERFECT! Bravo Amy!

And THANK YOU for giving us this extra little bonus in what is a fantastic series!

 – A Heart Full of Love by Kathleen Fuller – 

WOW! Again – I can not imagine how Kathleen did the research for this! And to write about it so convincingly…

I refuse to ruin any of this story for you. It’s just too good to miss!

This is one of those stories that also shows how the plain folk deal with tough situations things in much the same way as we all do. Although it does come in handy that most Amish have a very strong faith!

 – An Unexpected Blessing by Vannetta Chapman – 

I LOVE that stories with older main characters are becoming more popular! I think, far too often, people forget that interesting things still happen to those of us over the age of 30.

Vannetta does such an exceptional job of writing this story!

Instead of the anxiety over not being a good mother or not knowing what she’s doing – Etta has worries of a much more seasoned wife – and yet – Vannetta does not minimalize the issues a young mother would deal with, she simply shows an aspect of life that not many other authors think to.

I hope to see many more stories like this! BRAVO Vannetta! GREAT writing!

 

BRAVO to all four authors! I can hardly wait for the next one!

If you hop over to Facebook KATHLEEN FULLER is running a giveaway.
AMY CLIPSTON is advertising her next book signing – DON’T miss that!
VANNETTA CHAPMAN has posted a great video that ties in with one of her upcoming stories.
And BETH WISEMAN has some great discussions about her travels, how to find God in our writing and the ever-popular Amish Mud Sales that will be going on soon!

Also…

VANNETTA CHAPMAN is hosting several giveaways on her website so don’t miss those!
AMY CLIPSTON is running a contest to win two of her other titles so don’t miss that!

And a member of Any’s street team is hosting a Giveaway too – ZAC WEIKAL!

 

DON’T MISS An Amish Cradle by Beth Wiseman, Amy Clipston, Kathleen Fuller and Vannetta Chapman!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Once again, Beth Wiseman brings us a wonderful story of love and real life!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Amy Clipston has gifted us with a wonderful BONUS story about two favorite characters!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Kathleen Fuller certainly doesn’t shy away from serious subjects!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Vannetta Chapman is a masterful storyteller – no matter the plot!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Review © JCMorrows 2015

 

More from Thomas Nelson about An Amish Cradle:

In His Father’s Arms by Beth Wiseman

Ruth Anne Zook is excited that she and her best friend are due with their children the same week. But when Ruth Anne’s baby is born with Down Syndrome, she and her husband struggle to understand God’s plan.

A Son for Always by Amy Clipston

Carolyn and her husband Joshua are thrilled to be pregnant with their first child. A teenager when she had her son Benjamin, Carolyn still feels obligated to work to secure Ben’s future, even though Josh adopted Ben. She struggles to realize that Josh will love and protect both of their children equally.

A Heart Full of Love by Kathleen Fuller

Ellie’s mother loves to meddle in her personal life—especially now that Ellie’s pregnant. Since Ellie is blind, her mother worries that she won’t be able to handle the baby. When Ellie gives birth to twins, her mother insists on moving in. Just as everyone reaches the breaking point, a miracle draws them closer to each other and to God.

An Unexpected Blessing by Vannetta Chapman

At 42, Etta thought her time of having children was over, but she’s pregnant again. She goes into labor during a blizzard, and complications with the delivery raise fear. Etta struggles to accept Gotte’s wille for the baby and her son, David, who moved away two years earlier in search of what he would do with his life.

 

You can find more information and/or buy the book from these popular sites.

GOODREADS   THOMAS NELSON   WAL-MART

BETH’S WEBSITE   AMY’S WEBSITE   KATHLEEN’S WEBSITE   VANNETTA’S WEBSITE

Buy from Amazon.
Buy from Barnes and Noble.
Buy from Christian Book Distributor.
Buy from iBooks.

GOD BLESS!

AND

HAPPY READING!

 I was blessed to receive a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
All opinions are entirely my own.

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

An Early Look at “An Amish Cradle” by Beth Wiseman, Amy Clipston, Kathleen Fuller and Vannetta Chapman

Another wonderful collection of fabulous stories by amazing authors!

 

I LOVE THESE BOOKS!

I enjoy SO MUCH these extra stories put together by several authors whom I just LOVE!

And I especially LOVE IT when one of them is kind of a BONUS story!

As far as I can tell (I haven’t read everything Kathleen Fuller or Beth Wiseman has written…), Amy Clipston’s is the only story in this collection that fits that description but that’s enough for me!

To be fair – I’m going to go in order.

In His Father’s Arms by Beth Wiseman

Down Syndrome has got to be one of the toughest subjects to write about and I applaud Beth Wiseman for, not only doing it, but doing it well!

It’s always difficult to understand God’s will in these situations and I love how Beth shows us that – Amish or not – these parents have to deal with the situation as a mother and father.

Bravo Beth for showing that it’s not easy for the Amish just because of their faith.

A Son for Always by Amy Clipston

OK… I admit it. This is my favorite story in the book! And that’s really saying something because they’re all so fantastic!

Carolyn and her husband Joshua are two of my favorite characters from Amy’s Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series.

I don’t know how Amy did her research for a single mom but she certainly nails it right on the head! And anyone who says that Amy went overboard with Carolyn’s emotions in this novella can not have ever been a single mother.

This story is PERFECT! Bravo Amy!

And THANK YOU for giving us this extra little bonus in what is a fantastic series!

A Heart Full of Love by Kathleen Fuller

WOW! Again – I can not imagine how Kathleen did the research for this! And to write about it so convincingly…

I refuse to ruin any of this story for you. It’s just too good to miss!

This is one of those stories that also shows how the plain folk deal with tough situations things in much the same way as we all do.

Although it does come in handy that most Amish have a very strong faith!

An Unexpected Blessing by Vannetta Chapman

I LOVE that stories with older main characters are becoming more popular! I think, far too often, people forget that interesting things still happen to those of us over the age of 30.

Vannetta does such an exceptional job of writing this story!

Instead of the anxiety over not being a good mother or not knowing what she’s doing – Etta has worries of a much more seasoned wife – and yet – Vannetta does not minimalize the issues a young mother would deal with, she simply shows an aspect of life that not many other authors think to.

I hope to see many more stories like this!

BRAVO Vannetta! GREAT writing!

 

BRAVO to all four authors! I can hardly wait for the next one!

DON’T MISS An Amish Cradle by Beth Wiseman, Amy Clipston, Kathleen Fuller and Vannetta Chapman!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Once again, Beth Wiseman brings us a wonderful story of love and real life!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Amy Clipston has gifted us with a wonderful BONUS story about two favorite characters!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Kathleen Fuller certainly doesn’t shy away from serious subjects!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

Vannetta Chapman is a masterful storyteller – no matter the plot!CLICK TO TWEET!

 

© JCMorrows 2015

 

More from Thomas Nelson about An Amish Cradle:

In His Father’s Arms by Beth Wiseman

Ruth Anne Zook is excited that she and her best friend are due with their children the same week. But when Ruth Anne’s baby is born with Down Syndrome, she and her husband struggle to understand God’s plan.

A Son for Always by Amy Clipston

Carolyn and her husband Joshua are thrilled to be pregnant with their first child. A teenager when she had her son Benjamin, Carolyn still feels obligated to work to secure Ben’s future, even though Josh adopted Ben. She struggles to realize that Josh will love and protect both of their children equally.

A Heart Full of Love by Kathleen Fuller

Ellie’s mother loves to meddle in her personal life—especially now that Ellie’s pregnant. Since Ellie is blind, her mother worries that she won’t be able to handle the baby. When Ellie gives birth to twins, her mother insists on moving in. Just as everyone reaches the breaking point, a miracle draws them closer to each other and to God.

An Unexpected Blessing by Vannetta Chapman

At 42, Etta thought her time of having children was over, but she’s pregnant again. She goes into labor during a blizzard, and complications with the delivery raise fear. Etta struggles to accept Gotte’s wille for the baby and her son, David, who moved away two years earlier in search of what he would do with his life.

 

You can find more information and/or buy the book from these popular sites.

GOODREADS   THOMAS NELSON   WAL-MART

BETH’S WEBSITE   AMY’S WEBSITE   KATHLEEN’S WEBSITE   VANNETTA’S WEBSITE

Buy from Amazon.
Buy from Barnes and Noble.
Buy from Christian Book Distributor.
Buy from iBooks.

GOD BLESS!

AND

HAPPY READING!

 I was blessed to receive a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
All opinions are entirely my own.

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

Book 3 in Amy Clipston’s YA series! | Miles From Nowhere – an EARLY look!

I’ll be honest with you. I was worried about this book.

I mean… I read YA but it’s almost always fairy tales or Amish fiction – and I was concerned that I would not be able to connect with this story.

I was wrong.

WOW! I identified with Chelsea in so many ways, ways I never expected. Even reading the back of the book, I didn’t really “get it”. Until I started reading the book that is.

This book will appeal to young adults because they are either going through the very things Chelsea is dealing with in her life or they’ve watched a friend go through it.

It will appeal to adults because we will be reminded of our youth. It’s like a doorway we can look through to our own past. Amy has somehow managed to capture that and it’s amazing.

I mean, I knew she was a great writer but I don’t think I realized how great until I read this story. And it makes me want to go back and read her other young adult stories.

I don’t want to say too much because I don’t want to give the story away but I can remember how easy it is to be distracted by an exciting boy. This story brings back the memories of my teen years in sharp clarity.

A MUST read!

Amy Clipston has found the way to show us a look back at our past!Tweet this!

 

5star

 

Here is what Zondervan has to say about Miles From Nowhere:

Chelsea Morris has always been responsible, dependable, and focused on her dreams of fashion design—a dream that will officially begin come fall, when she leaves for college in New York City. And as she settles into her role as the lead designer for the local summer stock theater group, she decides to make the most of her last summer in North Carolina. But with her best friend Emily busy working late and spending time with Zander, and tensions with Chelsea’s boyfriend, Todd, running high, the summer she envisioned seems to be falling flat.

Then Dylan joins the latest summer production. There’s something about the college boy that makes her feel free and alive, and soon she’s broken up with Todd, and is sneaking out late to meet Dylan at parties and breaking rules at the playhouse. But before she knows it, her exciting nights are interfering with her job, her role on the play, as well as her relationship with Emily and with her parents. Worse, Chelsea finds herself feeling more and more estranged from God.

As the summer becomes wilder than she ever dreamed, Chelsea must decide if her heart is leading her in the right direction after all.

 

Miles From Nowhere will be available EVERYWHERE in April!Tweet this!

 

Click the links below to find more info and or to buy the book

GOODREADS   ZONDERVAN   AMY‘S WEBSITE

Buy from Amazon.
Buy from Barnes and Noble.
Buy from Christian Book Distributor.
Buy from iBooks.

GOD BLESS!

AND

HAPPY READING!

 I was blessed to receive a copy of this book from the author.

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

© JCMorrows 2015

WE HAVE A WINNER! | SPECIAL Gift Pack – Amy Clipston

 

We have a winner!

and the winner is:

 

Danny Garza!
(I will be contacting you shortly via e-mail)

 

I just know you’ll ENJOY the book… and the extra goodies too!

And I hope the wonderful story will help make you a regular reader of Amy’s!

 

CONGRATULATIONS!

and

GOD BLESS!

 

 

 

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.

I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

Adventures in Amy Clipston’s Bakery Bunch

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I just LOVE Amy’s book! She is such a talented author!

OK… Are you wondering yet – What exactly a Bakery Bunch is…?

Well, The Bakery Bunch is what Amy Clipston has named her street team.

Do you promote your favorite authors?Tweet this!

As a member of Amy’s Bakery Bunch – I sometimes get to read her new books early, I get advance news of special things coming up, I get notified every time her books or eBooks are on sale, and I get to tell everyone that I’m part of a special group hand-picked by Amy herself! (not to mention the cool swag that comes along with it – free books, bookmarks to go in the books, cute luggage tags, great pens, an awesome cup and this terrific bag that has the added bonus of being my absolute favorite color!)

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Yup… see that book – it’s an Advance Reading Copy! AWESOME!

One of the fun ideas Amy and her fearless sidekick Jamie have come up with was this post. All across the web, Bakery Bunchers are posting pics of their awesome swag, how they are using it in their everyday lives and how they are passing it on to other fans of Amy’s AWESOME books!

This is a picture of what I am including in my current giveaway - which ends tomorrow!
This is a picture of what I included in a recent giveaway!

Along this journey we get to visit bookstores (and is there one of us who can visit a bookstore without buying more FANTASTIC books?)

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Shameless plug: You can find Amy’s books at your local Lifeway… (Yes, that IS one of Amy’s bookmarks you see in the book… wonder who could have done that… hmmm)

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I don’t know about you but I LOVE bookmarks!Tweet this!

Some of us also visited local libraries to pass out swag which is kind of like a trial bookstore – Yes it’s a cold day… it’s January.

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And hey… Amy is even helping to save the planet – one plastic bag at a time!Tweet this!

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My daughter had to get in on the act for this one… she just LOVES pushing that shopping cart!

And hey – these awesome tumblers come in handy!

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Reusable cups help save the Earth too! Plus they look cool!Tweet this!

OK… OK… I had to make this one a little different – I don’t travel much.

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Isn’t Amy just the greatest! I know I think so!

Do you take your favorite authors with you when you travel?Tweet this!

© JC Morrows 2015

 

If you would like to check out some of the other Bakery Buncher posts, click the links below… these are in no order other than how I’ve found them posted in our group.

The Power of Words

Give Me Today

Donna’s BookShelf

Quiet Quilter’s Blog

Cindy’s Book Reviews

A Simply Enchanted Life

Eat Read Teach Blog

Books For Christian Girls – running a Giveaway until 1-20!

Raindrops & Rainbows

Kristi’s Book Review

Zac Weikal.com

These are the only ones I know about so far. I will add more as they are posted.

HAVE FUN!

Happy Reading!

God Bless!

 

(CLOSED) Who wants to win an ARC (Advance Reading Copy) of Amy Clipston’s NEW YA novel – Miles From Nowhere?

 

I am so very blessed to have in my possession, an ARC (Advance Reading Copy) of Amy Clipston’s NEW YA book – Miles From Nowhere!

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And I’m going to give it away to one lucky reader – along with two bookmarks, a themed luggage tag and an awesome personalized pen!

If you have not read any of Amy’s YA novels, I highly suggest you start with the first one – Roadside Assistance and then continue with Destination Unknown before going on to read Miles From Nowhere but to be completely fair, you can read them in any order you want. Amy is JUST THAT FANTASTIC a writer!

First a bit more about Miles From Nowhere:

 

Chelsea Morris has always been responsible, dependable, and focused on her dreams of fashion design, a dream that will officially begin come fall, when she leaves for college in New York City. As she settles into her role as the lead designer for the local summer stock theater group, she decides to make the most of her last summer in North Carolina. But with her best friend Emily busy working late and spending time with Zander, and tensions with Chelsea’s boyfriend, Todd, running high, the summer she envisioned seems to be falling flat.

Then Dylan joins the latest summer production. There’s something about the college boy that makes her feel free and alive, and soon she’s broken up with Todd, and is sneaking out late to meet Dylan at parties and breaking rules at the playhouse. But before she knows it, her exciting nights are interfering with her job, her role on the play, as well as her relationship with Emily and with her parents. Worse, Chelsea finds herself feeling more and more estranged from God.

As the summer becomes wilder than she ever dreamed, Chelsea must decide if her heart is leading her in the right direction after all.

 

This contest has ended.

 

Don’t miss Amy’s 1st TWO YA books – Roadside Assistance &amp Destination Unknown!Tweet this!

 

Thank you to everyone who entered and if you did not win, I suggest you buy the book or request it at your local library! It will be available soon for purchase!

 

GIVEAWAY DISCLAIMER:

  • Contests are only open to residents of the U.S.
  • Contest ended January 16th at midnight CDT
  • Winner was chosen at random
  • Winner will receive 1 ARC copy of Miles From Nowhere by Amy Clipston, 2 bookmarks, 1 pen and 1 luggage tag
  • Winner has been announced on my blog and notified by email
  • Entry implies agreement to all RULES AND REGULATIONS

And a special disclaimer about ARCs:  image

An ARC (Advance Reading Copy) is not to be sold! It is for your own personal reading enjoyment ONLY! You are welcome to pass it along (as long as you also pass along the information that it is not to be sold – under any circumstances)

Book companies and authors trust me with these ARCs for the purpose of reviews and I do not want to betray that trust, even in an extended way.

Therefore, any winner who is found to be attempting to sell an ARC they have won from me, will be forever banned from all contests on this blog or associated blogs.

Don’t let that happen. Thank You and may the best reader win!

 

GOD BLESS

and

HAPPY READING!

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

My top ten Authors – well… kinda

All over the net, readers/bloggers are listing their favorite authors of 2014 and I decided to jump on the bandwagon.

Of course I couldn’t narrow down my list to just ten authors. Actually I couldn’t even narrow my list to 20. I had to do it by genre – and I couldn’t get my favorites list in the Amish genre smaller than twelve… well, the others either. There are just too many AWESOME authors out there! Can you really blame me?

Can you narrow your favorite author list down to just ten?Tweet this!

 

So… here’s my personal list of the TOP TEN 12 FAVORITE AMISH FICTION AUTHORS:

Jennifer Beckstrand   Suzanne Woods Fisher   Vannetta Chapman   Cindy Woodsmall   Amy Clipston   Ruth Reid   Rosalind Lauer   Marta Perry   Shelley Shepard Gray   Beverly Lewis   Serena Miller   Lynette Sowell

 

Who are your favorite Amish Fiction authors?Tweet this!

 

I did actually manage to get the list down to ten – No I didn’t. I can’t do it. Even 12 isn’t enough for HISTORICAL FICTION.

Melanie Dickerson   Jamie Carie

Sarah Sundin   Rachel Muller   Sarah Loudin Thomas   Tricia Goyer   Cara Putman

Tracie Peterson   Mary Ellis   Mary Conneally   Janette Oke   Judith Miller

 

Are your favorite Historical fiction authors – inspirational or mainstream?Tweet this!

 

The INSPIRATIONAL FICTION AUTHOR list was a bit easier since I don’t read a lot of inspirational that isn’t Amish or Historical but only a bit because there are still so many:

Philip Gulley

Rachel Hauck   Betsy St. Amant   Robin Jones Gunn   Judy Baer

Vannetta Chapman   Barbara Cameron

Dan Walsh   Melody Carlson   Max Lucado

Nadine Brandes   CJ Darlington

 

Who started you out with Christian /Inspirational fiction?Tweet this!

 

Judy Baer started me out reading Christian fiction – who was your first?Tweet this!

 

Yesh… see how I snuck a few of my favorites into other genres – those of you who read as much as I do, know there are several authors who write in multiple genres. A couple of them landed in multiple categories because I just couldn’t help myself but it came in handy to be able to sneak in a few who I REALLY wanted to put in the Amish fiction list but just couldn’t do it.

 

If your favorite author switched genres, would you follow?Tweet this!

 

How many genres does your favorite author write in?Tweet this!

 

WHEW!

What am I gonna do next year…

 

Well, I guess I’ll have the top 20 in each genre.

 

© JC Morrows 2015

Book 3 in Amy Clipston’s Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel is FINALLY HERE!

A Dream of Home is the 3rd novel in Amy Clipston’s “The Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel” series It is scheduled to be released November 4, 2014. Yes, I got an early look! I LOVE being a book reviewer!

OK… now about the story.

I have to admit that I fell madly in love with Emma in A Mother’s Secret and I was nearly heart-broken when things did not go the way she planned…

So of course, I was excited to see her return in
A Dream of Home.

I have never been a combat nurse but there are a few things in my past that occasionally come back to haunt me so I feel a sort of kinship with Madeline Miller.

It also helps that Amy Clipston writes her nightmares so well that you truly feel like you’re right there, experiencing it with her.

I did not feel a kinship to Saul Beiler however.

Actually, when I was reading book 2: A Mother’s Secret, he nearly knocked Barbie off the pedestal of most disliked characters. He was just so rude and abrupt and… well, annoying.

I NEVER could have imagined that Saul would be remotely interested in a REAL relationship. I was sure he was just one of those controlling and angry men who hide behind their religious convictions.

BOY was I wrong!

I love that Amy Clipston occasionally throws you a crazy curve ball! It keeps her books interesting in a way that not many authors think of.

And I am NOT giving anything away about the story!

You’ll just have to read it for yourself! Trust me when I say that it is WORTH a read!

And keep watching! Amy has ANOTHER book coming in this series. It’s slotted to release next year.

And I’m sure A Simple Prayer will be just as fantastic as the first three in the series!

Happy Reading!

 

5star

 

Here is what Zondervan has to say about A Dream of Home:

Moving to Pennsylvania wasn’t in Madeleine’s original plans. She should still be in California and should have married her pilot fiance a year ago-but death has a way of changing everything.

Now the former Air Force flight nurse is living alone in Paradise, Pennsylvania, and working as a maid at the Lancaster Grand Hotel. She isn’t exactly a widow . . . but she sure feels like one.

Saul Beiler isn’t exactly a widower . . . but his wife is long gone. His eleven-year-old daughter, Emma, doesn’t know that her mother fled the Amish community-and married another man-but she does know that her dat is lonely, and that a pretty young maedel just moved in next door.

Madeline’s numb heart begins to thaw as she spends more time with the innocent and ever optimistic Emma. The stronger her friendship grows with the young girl, the more intrigued Madeline grows about the humble, strong, man raising her on his own.

But even as a strange attraction pulls Saul and Madeleine across a stark cultural divide, they-and everybody else-have to wonder: What could they possibly have in common besides heartache? Will love allow Madeleine to finally find the home she’s been dreaming of all along?

 

Click the links below to find more info and or to buy the book

GOODREADS   ZONDERVAN   AMY CLIPSTON’S WEBSITE

AMAZON   CBD   BARNES & NOBLE   ITUNES

 

GOD BLESS

and

HAPPY READING!

 

I received the book free from the BookLook Blogger program
in exchange for an honest review.

 

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

“A Mother’s Secret” | Book 2 in the Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series | Amy Clipston

A Mother's Secret

I ranted more than a little with my review of the first book in this series: A Hopeful Heart,  because someone ruined the book for me.

Which is why, In preparation for this book, I did not read ANY reviews.

Besides… I knew it would be great!
Why would I need to read reviews!

 

A Mother’s Secret  is a absolute masterpiece.

Amy Clipston has taken a delicate, sensitive subject and put a face on it that I certainly never expected to see.

I have read books by other authors of Amish fiction about this same subject but most of them focus on the shame in their community or the hardship on the mother or the ostracism from family.

A Mother’s Secret  takes a whole new approach and I LOVE IT!

Yes there is mention of the “shame” Carolyn’s “situation” brought to the family but it is not the focus of the story, except for how much Carolyn punishes herself about it. The community has forgiven her – but that’s really what we expect from an Amish community, isn’t it?

And yes, there is mention of the hardship on Carolyn but it’s primarily past-tense for this story and only as it contributes to the story, again…not the focus. It’s nothing like what you read about in many other books that seem to make the hardship a single mother deals with the main focus of the story.

And while there is friction between Joshua and his mother… and Carolyn and Joshua’s mother… and Benjamin and Joshua’s mother – noticing a pattern here… if you read the first book, you know Barbie causes friction between her and almost everyone around her – there is no ostracism from Carolyn’s own family, which…again, is what you would expect from an Amish family. The Amish are famous for their forgiveness.

Just keep that in mind as you read – I’m not going to say why…

This is the story of a mother and her son. It highlights the family dynamics that come with this somewhat unique situation but it clearly focuses on the mother and son. And Amy Clipston does a beautiful job of writing, not just a love story between Carolyn and her possible suitors, but between Carolyn and her son – who she and her family consider a blessing… not a burden like many other families might.

Perhaps it is the Amish worldview that helps them accomplish this or perhaps it is simply due to their intense faith in God and their strong desire to live as Christ-like a life as possible. Whatever the reason, Amy Clipston hit the mark perfectly with this book!

I must have rewritten and added to this review a dozen or more times – I kept thinking of things I had to add or a different way I wanted to say something and I just had to get it right! This is a tremendous story and I hope everyone who reads it gets as much of a blessing from it as I have.

God Bless you Amy Clipston!

Now I’m impatient for the next book, “A Simple Prayer, which is the final book in my Hearts of Lancaster Grand Hotel series” – via AmyClipston.com.

Is it 2015 yet?

 

5star

 

More about “A Mother’s Secret” from Zondervan:

Carolyn Lapp dreams of marrying for love. But will the errors of her past destroy this dream forever?

Carolyn Lapp longs to have a traditional Amish family. But she lives on her brother’s farm with her parents and her 15-year old son, Benjamin. Carolyn has never revealed the identity of Benjamin’s father and lives daily with the guilt and shame of her youthful indiscretion.

Her brother simply will not forgive her. His answer is to arrange a practical marriage for Carolyn to Saul, a widower with a little girl. But Carolyn isn’t convinced that Saul really loves her and believes he is simply looking for someone to help raise his daughter.

When Benjamin causes trouble at a local horse auction, horse breeder Joshua Glick decides that he must be taught a lesson. Carolyn and Joshua are unmistakably drawn to each other, but Joshua mistakenly assumes that Benjamin is Carolyn’s brother.

Carolyn fears that if he discovers the truth, her past will destroy their budding romance. After years of shame and loneliness, Carolyn suddenly has two men vying for her attention. But which of them will give her the family—and the unconditional love—she’s longed for?

Click HERE to visit the page on Zondervan

HERE for GoodReads HERE for ChristianBook.com

And HERE for Amy Clipston’s website.

 

 

Happy Reading

And

GOD BLESS!

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Litfuse Publicity book review program in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

 

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

A Mother’s Secret | Kindle Fire giveaway from Amy Clipston

 

Don’t miss the newest offering in the Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series from
Amy Clipston – A Mother’s Secret

An unwed Amish woman yearns for real love and a family. The only thing in her way is the shame she’s been carrying for half of her life. The novel received 4-1/2 stars from Romantic Times and was chosen as a Top Pick.

Amy is celebrating with a Kindle Fire giveaway.

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One winner will receive:

  • A Kindle Fire
  • Books 1 and 2 in the Hearts of the Lancaster Grand Hotel series, A Hopeful Heart and A Mother’s Secret.

 

Enter today, the giveaway ends on July 6th.
Winner will be announced July 7th on Amy’s blog.

 

{A bit About Amy Clipston}

Amy Clipston

 

Amy Clipston holds a degree in communication from Virginia Wesleyan College and works full-time for the City of Charlotte, NC. Amy lives in North Carolina with her husband, and two sons and four spoiled rotten cats.

Find out more about Amy at http://amyclipston.com.

 

 

 

 

Happy Reading

And

GOD BLESS!

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below.
I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

25 Books of Christmas!

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There are so many more than 25 Books I love to read at Christmas-time but here are 25 Favorites (some old, some new & a couple that are brand New)

Most of these I’ve read already but a few of them are on my to-read list. It’s going to be a great Christmas season!

The organization is a little weird. I tried to group them by author and by sequence or time published. Hope that’s not too confusing.

I do apologize for any confusion.

I have edited this post and taken out some books I previously featured.
So I’ve redone the entire post.
They’re not in the same order but I think this could be even more fun!

I’m a little disappointed to have to do this at Christmas time but a friend of mine recently reviewed one of the books I had featured and she discovered some very bad language so I have taken them out.

I have a confession to make here. I only put in the books because I enjoyed the movies that were made from them so much. Unfortunately, it seems the books are nothing like the movies.

I will never understand why people feel the need to include nasty language or inappropriate behavior in their stories. It does NOT make them better. And it certainly does not make them Christian.

So here are my own personal favorites!

A Simple Amish Christmas”
Simple Amish Christmasby Vannetta Chapman

From GoodReads: Annie Weaver always planned to return home, but the 20-year old RN has lived in Philadelphia for three years now. As her time of rumschpringe is about to come to an abrupt end, bringing for Annie an overwhelming sense of loneliness.

She returns home and finds herself face-to-face with a budding romance with an Amish farmer and important choices to make.

The Christmas Quilt”
5660435by Vannetta Chapman

From GoodReads: Annie’s life is deliciously full as the Christmas season approaches. She helps her husband, Samuel, attend to the community’s minor medical needs. She occasionally assists Belinda, the local midwife, and most days, she finds herself delivering the buggy to her brother Adam.

Annie s sister-in-law Leah is due to deliver their first child before Christmas morning, and Annie is determined to finish a crib quilt before the “boppli” arrives. With six weeks to go, she should have no problem . . . but God may have a different plan.

Leah is rushed to the English hospital when the infant arrives early, and Annie discovers the Christmas quilt may hold a far greater significance than she ever imagined.

Christmas at Pebble Creek”
Christmas-at-Pebble-Creek-eBook-194x300by Vannetta Chapman

From Amazon: From The Pebble Creek Amish Series by Vannetta Chapman.

Fans of the series will enjoy this chance to briefly revisit Pebble Creek, and new readers will be introduced to an Amish community that is more deeply explored in the three full novels, A Promise for Miriam, A Home for Lydia, and A Wedding for Julia.

As a bonus, this free eBook also includes Amish home-style recipes for chicken and dumplings, green beans, and fresh bread.

Heavy snow blankets the southwestern Wisconsin Amish community as nineteen-year-old Grace Miller closes the schoolhouse for Christmas break. She’s looking forward to having extra time to help the family prepare for the holiday, and she is hoping to get a few more drawings in of the beautiful, snowy Pebble Creek landscape. Her courtship with Adam Lapp is going on six months, and Grace can’t wait to give him his present: a blue-and-brown buggy blanket she crocheted for him.

Yes, this Christmas is going to be especially joyful. Yet, amid the cheer of snowshoe outings, church potlucks, and holiday festivities, Grace is given a bittersweet reminder of the Christmas story. Grief is present with celebration, and though the future is rarely certain, she is given a heartwarming glimpse that God knows our needs before we do and will provide.

A Christmas Gift for Rose”
17787021by Tricia Goyer

From GoodReads: Born in the midst of the hardships of The Great Depression, Rose grew up in Berlin, Ohio, in the arms of a loving Amish family. But as she prepares to marry, she’s thrown into confusion when she learns the truth of her birth. She was born Englisch and abandoned when the family moved on in search of work.

Was she meant to be Amish or would she have been better off growing up with her own kind—Englischers? And was her intended’s gift of discovering her birth family given out of love or fear?

15851936A Christmas for Katie” by Shelley Shepard Grey

From GoodReads: Will a little Amish girl make a Christmas miracle? It isn’t easy to be Katie Weaver. Her sister-in-law Ella is about to have a baby, making Katie an aunt for the second time … and she’s only six and a half!

Plus, her favorite librarian, Miss Donovan, seems sad. She won’t even fix up the rundown nativity in front of the library in time for Christmas. Then, an old woman is attacked outside the library, and, one by one, the nativity figures start to disappear!

Luckily, there’s a new deputy in town, Connor Fields. He takes a real liking to Miss Donovan … and he promises to find the missing nativity pieces for Katie. Now, all Katie has to do is pray that Ella’s delivery goes well and that some kind of nativity is in place for Christmas Eve. Oh, and that Miss D. falls in love with Connor. Katie knows from watching her three brothers that it makes people real happy. And that would be a Christmas miracle indeed!

Christmas in Sugar Creek” by Shelley Shepard Grey 10680698

From GoodReads: Judith Graber has always been the obedient daughter. When her older brother Josh struggled with his love life, she offered wise counsel. When her younger brother Caleb flirted with the idea of leaving their order, she firmly told him he was wrong.

Over the years, she’s watched her younger siblings, helped around the house, and worked in her family’s store during her spare time. Judith feels overworked, overlooked, and underappreciated this holiday season.

But everything changes when her father hires Ben Knox. Ben Knox is the “bad boy” of Sugarcreek. Though he’s never considered jumping the fence, he’s certainly never tried to be anything close to dutiful. Two years ago he left Sugarcreek under a cloud of shame. Rumors circulated that his rumspringa had been filled with more than the usual harmless explorations. Now he’s back and working side by side with Judith. As the chaos of the holiday season threatens to sap all joy, sparks fly between Ben and Judith. But Judith steels herself to ignore her infatuation.

The last thing she wants to be is just one more girl who falls under Ben’s spell. Ben, on the other hand, wants Judith to realize there’s more to him than his bad reputation. When he fled Sugarcreek, he was running from a disruptive home life. Now that he’s back, he wants a fresh beginning. Could this Christmas season bring love and a new life for the unlikeliest pair in Sugarcreek?

8501404Grace” by Shelley Shepard Grey

From GoodReads: It’s never too late to go home. It’s Christmastime at the Brenneman Bed and Breakfast, and everyone is excited about closing down for the holidays. But when two unexpected visitors appear seeking shelter, the family’s commitment to hospitality is tested.

First Levi arrives, sullen and angry…but insisting on staying for five days. Next Melody shows up. She’s almost nine months pregnant, but won’t say a word about why she traveled all the way from Kentucky by herself.

As the two strangers settle in, the Brennemans try to make the best of an uncomfortable situation, except for Katie, who knows a thing or two about keeping secrets. She is determined to learn the truth about these two strangers…all while keeping her own secret safely hidden away. All is revealed when a snowstorm traps them at the inn.

Peace” by Shelley Shepard Grey 17331333

From GoodReads: After a year of secrets and scandal, will this Amish community finally find peace under the bright promise of Christmas? Beth Byler has a secret. Ever since she met Englischer Chris Ellis while helping out at the Yellow Bird Inn, she can’t stop thinking about him.

She knows a relationship could never go anywhere—Chris was working undercover in Crittenden County as a DEA agent. That meant he faced danger daily and carried a gun, making him completely unsuitable for an Amish woman like herself. But she knew he felt the attraction, too. It was the reason he left so suddenly, promising never to see her again.

Then, three days before Christmas, while Beth is taking care of the inn, Chris returns. This time, he is bleeding and in need of a place to hide. Against her better judgment, Beth takes him in and tends to his wounds. She also promises to keep his presence a secret. Before long, it becomes clear that nothing between them has changed—a relationship is inevitable. But are they ready to sacrifice everything for this chance at love?

The Sound of Sleigh Bells”
6275220by Cindy Woodsmall

From GoodReads: Beth Hertzler works alongside her beloved Aunt Lizzy in their dry goods store, and serving as contact of sorts between Amish craftsmen and Englischers who want to sell the Plain people’s wares. But remorse and loneliness still echo in her heart everyday as she still wears the dark garb, indicating mourning of her fiancé.

When she discovers a large, intricately carved scene of Amish children playing in the snow, something deep inside Beth’s soul responds and she wants to help the unknown artist find homes for his work–including Lizzy’s dry goods store. But she doesn’t know if her bishop will approve of the gorgeous carving or deem it idolatry.

Lizzy sees the changes in her niece when Beth shows her the woodworking, and after Lizzy hunts down Jonah, the artist, she is all the more determined that Beth meets this man with the hands that create healing art. But it’s not that simple–will Lizzy’s elaborate plan to reintroduce her niece to love work? Will Jonah be able to offer Beth the sleigh ride she’s always dreamed of and a second chance at real love–or just more heartbreak?

The Christmas Singing” by Cindy Woodsmall10301098

From GoodReads: Mattie thought her childhood sweetheart adored her until he abruptly ended their engagement on Christmas Eve. Three years later, will learning the truth behind his rejection restore her Christmas joy – or open the door to even deeper heartbreak?

Spend Christmas with the Amish in this story of love, romance, heartache, and restoration. Experience the holidays with the Plain folk and discover the power of second chances in this touching story from the author of the New York Times bestseller, The Bridge of Peace.

Gideon Beiler has loved Mattie Eash since they were children. But when faced with unexpected circumstances, he makes up an excuse to end their engagement. He doesn’t want to lie to her, but he believes that telling Mattie the truth will be more hurtful. Brokenhearted, Mattie moves from Apple Ridge, Pennsylvania to Ohio, where she pursues her longtime dream of becoming a cake decorator.

She finds a new beau—a man offering the secure relationship Gideon has denied her. When Mattie is forced to return to Apple Ridge, she and Gideon must confront the suffering created by his dishonesty – and address the powerful emotions that continue to bind the two childhood friends.

The Dawn of Christmas”
17288591by Cindy Woodsmall

From GoodReads: This Christmas, experience learning to trust alongside the Plain folk of Apple Ridge, Pennsylvania in this heart-warming tale of second chances.

Sadie enjoys her freedom away from home and her mission trips to Peru, but after four years, her Old Order Amish family insists it’s time to come home and settle down.

Levi, a bachelor who distrusts women after a family heartbreak, also has no desire for romance. To keep their families from meddling in their lives, Sadie and Levi devise a plan—but soon discover that the walls around their hearts are breaking down. Can they let go of their prejudices, learn to trust each other, and embrace a future together?

957993Christmas in Harmony” by Philip Gulley

From GoodReads: Philip Gulley takes us to Harmony, Indiana, at Christmastime as inspiration strikes the inimitable Dale Hinshaw. Always looking for a way to increase the church’s profit margins, Hinshaw brainstorms a progressive nativity scene that will involve the whole town, complete with a map like those for the Hollywood stars.

Neither Pastor Sam Gardner nor the other members of the Harmony Friends meeting express any enthusiasm for this idea, but Dale is unstoppable. Meanwhile, Pastor Sam has his own concerns: he’s having his annual argument with his wife, and he’s worried that the four-slotted toaster he bought for her may be too lavish a gift. Amidst the bustle of the season, the citizens of Harmony experience the simple joys and sometime loneliness that often go unseen.

Sam comes to the realization that Dale, in his own misguided way, is only trying to draw meaning from the eternal story of Christmas. “In this unsettled world, it is good to have this steadiness — the Christmas Eve service, the peal of the bell. . . .There is a holiness to memory, a sense of God’s presence in these mangers of the mind. Which might explain why it is that the occasions that change the least are often the very occasions that change us the most.”

The Christmas Scrapbook” by Philip Gulley 579063

From GoodReads: It’s autumn in Harmony, and Pastor Sam Gardner has vowed to be ready for Christmas. Determined to redeem a dreadful history of gift giving, Sam enrolls in a scrapbooking class to make a Christmas gift his wife will never forget. However, Sam’s absence from their home every Wednesday night, coupled with his fishy alibi of attending a men’s group, raises her suspicions.

Meanwhile, Sam struggles in the class and must attempt to complete his project with only the help of his faithful secretary, Frank. As Christmas fast approaches and rumors of Sam’s Wednesday night absences swirl along with the snow, a series of mishaps leads to a Christmas no one will soon forget.

This is a GREAT ADVENT Guide:

The ADVENTure of Christmas
986149by Lisa Whelchel

From GoodReads: The ADVENTure of Christmas is a guide for moms concerned that their children are losing sight of Jesus in the midst of the distractions the holiday season brings. Lisa Whelchel was such a mom, but instead of abandoning the traditions of Christmas she rediscovered their original meanings, which were intended to remind people of God’s unfathomable gift. Hanging lights on the house, wrapping gifts, and decorating the tree have become opportunities to teach her children about how they relate to Jesus’ birth. With The ADVENTure of Christmas, mothers can redeem what’s been lost from the very symbols that are gentle reminders of the true meaning of Christmas.

Have you discovered that Jesus sometimes gets lost in the middle of the hustle and bustle of His birthday party? Would you like to be able to keep your children’s focus on Jesus and also join them in the wonder of the celebration?

For each of the twenty-four days preceding Christmas, The ADVENTure of Christmas serves as a fun and handy guide that describes the significance behind your favorite traditions. Hanging lights on the house, wrapping gifts, and decorating the tree will become opportunities to share how these customs relate to Jesus’ birth. The ADVENTure of Christmas recaptures the true meaning of this beloved season, giving reasons to celebrate for years to come.

Story Behind the Book

Feeling like Jesus had gotten lost in the frenzy of the holiday season, I asked the Lord to show me what I could do to teach my children the true meaning of Christmas. I was caught off-guard when He simply replied, “Don’t do anything differently. Look in the middle of the celebration and you will find Me.” He was right. There was no need to orchestrate moments to pontificate about “the commercialization of Christmas.” Instead, Jesus is beckoning us to come to the party and bring the kids. In doing so, we run into Him at the mall, the movies, even at school. He hides in the lights, the carols, and the cards. He is there when we dress the evergreen tree, when Dad dresses up in a red suit, and even when we eat turkey and dressing!

And THESE BOOKS, I have not read… but I can’t wait to have a crack at them:

Christmas Cradles”
Christmas Cradles by Kelly Longby Kelly Long

From GoodReads:

When Anna Stolis takes over for her aunt, the local midwife, Christmas night heats up with multiple deliveries, three strangers’ quilts, and unexpected help from the handsome and brooding Asa Lapp.

(Part of a Christmas Anthology with three other stories by Fantastic Authors: Amy Clipston, Barbara Cameron and Kathleen Fuller. This book is different than the one that includes the stories below)

A Choice to Forgive”
by Beth WisemanA Choice to Forgive by Beth Wiseman

From GoodReads:

After Daniel disappeared that long-ago Christmas Eve, Lydia built a life with his brother. But now she’s a widow and Daniel has reappeared, asking for forgiveness.

Can she go back to her normal life with her long-lost love as her neighbor?

A Miracle for Miriam”
A Miracle for Miriam by Kathleen Fullerby Kathleen Fuller

From GoodReads:

Seth is no longer the arrogant young man who shattered Miriam’s confidence and broker her heart.

Will he be able to show “plain” Miriam that she is truly beautiful to him?

One Child”
One Child by Barbara Cameronby Barbara Cameron

From GoodReads:

The birth of one child forever changed the world two thousand years ago.

On a snowy Christmas night in Lancaster County, another child changes the world for two very different couples.

10426868Christmas in Lancaster County”
by “Suzanne Woods Fisher

From GoodReads: Jaime and C. J. Fitzpatrick began their married life as most couples do–in love and looking forward to a bright future together. But four years later they’ve drifted apart and are almost ready to call it quits.

Mattie Riehl was hoping to give her husband Sol the Christmas gift they have both longed for–news that a baby was on the way. But as usual, she is disappointed. The holidays bring an acute awareness to Mattie that her dream of a big family isn’t likely to become a reality.

Then a winter storm raging outside blows the Fitzpatricks into the Riehl home–and into a much slower pace of life. Can these two couples from different worlds help each other understand the true meaning of love this Christmas?

With her trademark plot twists and attention to detail, Suzanne Woods Fisher offers readers a beautiful Christmas story of love, forgiveness, and what truly matters in life.

7861579Sarah’s Christmas Miracle”
by “Mary Ellis

From GoodReads: From the bestselling author of A Widow’s Hope and Never Far from Home comes a brand-new Amish novella that will add joy to the Christmas season.

Sarah Beachy has plenty to be joyous about as autumn leaves start to fall. She loves her job at the English bed-and-breakfast where she cooks and refreshes rooms between guests. She has a serious beau, and everyone expects an engagement soon. Why, then, would she jeopardize everything by suddenly deciding to take a trip to Cleveland to track down a brother who left the Order years ago?

Her family’s faith in God is put to the test as the holiest night of the year approaches and Sarah remains far away. Sarah’s mother, Elizabeth, has been missing her son for such a long time…will she lose her daughter to the English world as well? Or will the Beachy family receive an unexpected Christmas miracle?

Naomi’s Gift”
by Amy Clipston10956717

From GoodReads: Take a trip to Bird-in-Hand, Pennsylvania, where you’ll meet the women of the Kauffman Amish Bakery in Lancaster County.

As each woman’s story unfolds, you will share in her heartaches, trials, joys, dreams … and secrets. You’ll discover how the simplicity of the Amish lifestyle can clash with the ‘English’ way of life—and the decisions and consequences that follow. Most importantly, you will be encouraged by the hope and faith of these women, and the importance they place on their families.

Naomi’s Gift re-introduces twenty-four-year-old Naomi King, who has been burned twice by love and has all but given up on marriage and children. As Christmas approaches—a time of family, faith, and hope for many others—Naomi is more certain than ever her life will be spent as an old maid, helping with the family’s quilting business and taking care of her eight siblings. Then she meets Caleb, a young widower with a 7-year-old daughter, and her world is once again turned upside-down. Naomi’s story of romantic trial and error and youthful insecurities has universal appeal. Author

Amy Clipston artfully paints a panorama of simple lives full of complex relationships, and she carefully explores cultural differences and human similarities, with inspirational results. Naomi’s Gift includes all the details of Amish life that Clipston’s fans enjoy, while delivering the compelling stories and strong characters that continue to draw legions of new readers.

A Plain & Simple Amish Christmas”
9039054by Amy Clipston

From GoodReads: In the tradition of her widely popular Kauffman Amish Bakery series, author Amy Clipston tells the tale of Anna Mae McDonough who was shunned by her family four years ago when she left her Amish community in Lancaster County, PA, to marry an -Englisher- (non Amish) man and move with him to Baltimore.

Now, eight months pregnant when her first child, she longs to return home for Christmas to reconcile with her family, especially her stern father, who is the religious leader for her former Amish church district.

So Anne Mae writes a letter to Kathryn Beiler, her brother-s wife, to enlist her help. Kathryn asks her husband, David, if she should arrange Anna Mae-s visit. David cautions her that a visit would cause too much stress in the family and instead suggests they visit Anna Mae and her husband in the spring. However, Kathryn arranges the visit anyway, believing in her heart that it-s God-s will for the family to heal.

When Anna Mae arrives in Lancaster for Christmas, she doesn’t receive the welcome she expects and her world begins to fall apart, leaving her to question her place in her family – and her faith in God.

A book filled with love, the pain of being separated from one-s family, and the determination to follow God-s will regardless of the outcome, A Plain and Simple Christmas is an inspiring page-turner that will keep you guessing what happens next-right to the very last page.

17814770Annie’s Christmas Wish”
by “Barbara Cameron

From GoodReads: Ever since her step-mom brought her a snow globe of the New York City skyline, Annie has wanted to visit the beautiful, big city. Since it’s nearing the time of Annie’s rumschpringe — the time when Amish youth experience Englisch life to make a decision whether to live in that world or become baptized into the Amish faith—the family decides a visit is a good idea.

They watch the Macy’s Christmas parade, admire the decorated store windows, skate at the Rockefeller Center rink and —  Annie’s favorite — get a glimpse of a writer’s life while visiting the New York Times building. But others aren’t as thrilled with Annie’s lure to the Big Apple. Aaron has long been attracted to Annie and is sure he’s in love. As he watches her engage in big city life, he grows concerned that she won’t want to return to their quieter life.

Will Annie follow Aaron back home? Or stay and pursue her dreams? Competing for her attention, Aaron sets out to show Annie that Christmas isn’t about the glitz and glamour, but about family, love, and the birth of Jesus

13613049A Wild Goose Chase Christmas” by “Jennifer AlLee

From GoodReads: Upon her grandmother’s death, Izzy Fontaine finds herself in possession of a Wild Goose Chase pattern quilt that supposedly leads to a great treasure. Of course, once the rest of the family finds out about the “treasure map,” they’re determined to have a go at the treasure themselves. And, if that weren’t enough, Max Logan, a local museum curator, contacts Izzy and says that Grandma Isabella promised him the quilt.

What is it about this quilt that makes everyone want it? Is Izzy on a wild goose chase of her own, or a journey that will lead her to the treasure her grandmother intended?

And of course… We cannot forget the most important Christmas book, the one that started it all, the original book of Christmas.

The Bible (I prefer the King James Version myself) bible

1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. 2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) 5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. 6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

Wishing you and your family a
Merry Christmas this year!

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“A Hopeful Heart” by Amy Clipston

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First let me say that I do not enjoy having a book ruined for me by spoilers.

GoodReads has spoiler settings for a reason people. Use it.

OK. Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system.

Even though some incredibly rude person (who also didn’t like the book) essentially ruined the ending for me, I went ahead and read the book because it started out really well (when I read that review, I was already about 15 pages into the story) and I wanted to see it through.

I wasn’t sorry.

I really enjoyed the book. Amy Clipston’s writing is truly amazing. She really puts you “in” the story! At one point, a character is sitting in the rain and its so well-written, I could almost hear the rain all around me.

Fantastic!

Amy’s character development is wonderful. I may not like all of the characters but I can’t deny that they’re written well. Plus the story has a real ring of truth and that’s such a plus for me! You all know how I feel about the “Amish” novels that aren’t really true to Amish life.

I can also tell you that Amy Clipston is an awesome person. I recently requested a bookmark and bookplate from her and she sent me 5 bookmarks and 4 bookplates! She’s so awesome! Kauffman Bakery series next!

I can’t wait to read her next book!

I received this book free for an honest review from NetGalley.

You can find more info about “A Hopeful Heart” HERE at NetGalley You can learn more about Amy Clipston and her novels HERE and more about this book at GoodReads HERE!

Enjoy it!

Disclaimer: I have no control over the ads you may see below. I am sorry if any of the content is inappropriate.

God Bless You!