Review: KNIGHT ON THE TEXAS PLAINS by Linda Broday {giveaway}

BNR Knight on the Texas Plains JPG
KNIGHT ON THE 
TEXAS PLAINS
Texas Heroes Series
by
LINDA BRODAY
  Genre: Western / Historical / Romance
Date of Publication: August 1, 2017
Number of Pages: 352

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Duel McClain buries his wife and infant son, climbs in the saddle, and rides off. Locked in grief, he drifts from one Texas town to another as the months pass. He rides into a border town and gets in a card game in the saloon. On the last hand, the opponent across from him runs out of money. The man reaches down for a baby and plunks her in the center of the table. Whoever wins the pot, gets her too. After Duel wins with the Deadman’s Hand, he tries to give the baby back. But when the man tells him he’ll sell her, Duel keeps his prize.
On the way back to his home, he runs across a woman covered in blood. She only says her name is Jessie and the blood isn’t hers. The deep fear in her eyes touches Duel and he has to do something. He strikes a bargain—he’ll take her anywhere she wants to go in return for helping with the child.
Jessie sees honor, respect, and kindness in his eyes. And the moment she holds the baby in her arms, her heart melts. Once they reach Duel’s home, she confesses she killed her husband and tells him the law will come. Desperate to save her, he offers marriage and she accepts.

They settle in and love develops. But each day grows more tense. Lawmen are coming and they can’t stop them. Soon, she’ll face the hangman’s rope.

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———–
Praise for Knight on the Texas Plains:
“Broday (the Men of Legend series) has a knack for capturing the hesitations of both Duel and Jessie and unfurling a twisting plot without resorting to melodrama. Through carefully deployed flashbacks, she slowly exposes the horrors of Jessie’s marriage, culminating in a truly grisly image of depravity without overwhelming the tender love story. Fans of historical romances will be pleased.”  ~~ Publisher’s Weekly
“The instant a sweet baby girl, an abused woman, a stray dog, and a reluctant hero meet, readers are drawn into a tender and tough love story that touches many emotions and will have them believing in the healing power of love.”  ~~ Romantic Times 4 ½ Stars Top Pick!
“Broday’s latest is a tender romance to touch the heart.”  ~~ Bookpage
“This story is simply endearing, packed with powerful message of humanity and the true healing power of family and love!!” ~~ Addicted to Romance
“Throughout the well-paced story, there was suspense, tears, fear, revulsion, and no shortage of laughter and joy. I didn’t want the story to end.” ~~ Teresa on Goodreads
review

Traditional Western Romance with a TON of Heart.
Duel McLain has taken to wandering the Texas landscape since he lost everything, except his honor.  A winning hand of poker sets his life on a path he never expected.  And now he has a child to see to safety.
Jessie Foltry is running for her life.  Hungry and battered, she stumbles upon Duel’s campsite, and his honor compels him to bring her along to safety back home.  
Duel and Jessie find a way to put their tortured pasts behind them and find salvation in one another, while making a life and a place in their hearts for the little girl, Marley Rose.  But the past is never far behind, and they must trust in each other to get through the trials ahead.
Linda Broday is an exceptional storyteller.  The scenery comes to life around her characters as she weaves the story of Duel and Jessie on the page.  The characters are truly unforgettable and are guaranteed to stay with me for a long time.  I absolutely adored this story.  It was a delightful tale of loss and redemption, and honor.  I highly recommend KNIGHT ON THE TEXAS PLAINS to those who love historical western romances with a sweet romance and an ending that will leave you warm and fuzzy long after the last page.

Linda Broday, Historical Western Romance Author  I’m a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 8 full length historical western romance novels, with another set to release 2017, and 10 short stories. Watching TV westerns during my youth fed my love of cowboys and the old West and they still do. I reside in the Texas Panhandle on land the American Indian and Comancheros once roamed. At times, I can feel their ghosts lurking around every corner. Texas’ rich history is one reason I set all my stories here. I love research and looking for little known tidbits to add realism to my stories. When I’m not writing, I collect old coins and I confess to being a rock hound. I’ve been accused (and quite unfairly I might add) of making a nuisance of myself at museums, libraries, and historical places. I’m also a movie buff and love sitting in a dark theater, watching the magic on the screen. As long as I’m confessing…chocolate is my best friend. It just soothes my soul.

WEBSITE   FACEBOOK     PINTEREST

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8/22/17
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8/23/17
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8/24/17
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Excerpt: COMFORT PLANS by Kimberly Fish

BNR Comfort Plans JPG
COMFORT PLANS
by
KIMBERLY FISH
  Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
Date of Publication: May 23, 2017
Number of Pages: 320
Scroll down for giveaway!
 

Colette Sheridan is being remodeled.

As a San Antonio architect, she’d have vowed her career was to investigate the history and create new functions for the structures everyone else saw as eyesores. The old German farmhouse in Comfort, Texas, might be the screeching end of that dream job. The assignment seemed so ideal at the start; generous clients, a stunning location, and a pocketful of letters that were surely meant to explain the ranch’s story. All that goodness crashed louder than a pile of two-by-fours when her grandfather announced he’d lured Colette’s ex-husband back to San Antonio to take over the family architecture firm. Now, not only does Colette have to endure the challenges posed by Beau Jefferson, the client’s handpicked contractor, a house that resists efforts to be modernized, and letters that may hold the secret to buried treasure, but she also has to decide if she has the courage to fight for her future.
Set against the backdrop of the Texas Hill Country, Colette and Beau have to rely on plans neither of them constructed in order to navigate the changes of a house with a story to tell, and a future they couldn’t even imagine.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“Kimberly Fish’s unique writing style snatched me out of my easy chair and plunked me down into the middle of her character’s life where I was loathe to leave when my real life called me back. Her descriptive visual writing drew me in on the first page. Can’t wait to read more stories by Mrs. Fish.”
–Vickie Phelps,Author of Moved, Left No Address

Excerpt

Excerpt, Chapter 1, Part 3

from Comfort Plans

Continued from the Lone Star Book Blog Tours 8/5/17 Stop

Scooping up a handful of chiffon, Colette scooted across the leather driver’s seat and wondered if her grandfather followed-through with a candidate, if a new president at Sheridan’s would gain much traction in the market. The boutique firm specialized in historical restoration and had a niche in South Texas. Since Nathan Sheridan was the guru of that style, she doubted anyone would ever replicate the success her grandfather had maintained in an industry that could change on the whims of the stock market.

Point number twelve for why he needed to groom a stronger replacement.

She backed out of the driveway but stole one last glance at the man who never went a day without Brylcreem. His custom-tailored shirt was rolled at the sleeves, and he was wearing his dress slacks on a Saturday night. The Big Ben of her world—he was classy, reliable, and just as unbending as any national monument London had ever produced.

He was flagging her to roll down her window.

Colette cranked the window below her nose. “Yes?”

“Aren’t you at all curious who I’ve finally selected to manage my empire?”

Empire was a bit of a leap. The last quarter-profits weren’t anything to get excited about. “Knowing that you would scour the face of the earth to find someone worthy of the Sheridan name and that it’s taken you years since the last serious candidate, I’m hopeful this man is capable of carrying your legacy forward.”

“That’s a lot of faith from the girl who questioned me about the wisdom of maintaining my breakfast ritual at Earl Abel’s.”

He did have a nasty habit of smothering all forms of nutrition with sausage gravy, which was another reason to force him into a doctor’s appointment.

“I’m looking out for your general health because I want you to hang around and torment me for years to come.” Which was true. She adored her resident curmudgeon and delighted in being one of the few people in the world who could make him laugh.

His lips turned down even more than usual. “I’m one of the short timers, which is why I want to know that you and my firm are going to be in good hands.”

She shivered. “Don’t talk like that. You know what Momma says about positive thinking.”

“Your mother is a flake.”

Colette sighed and knew she’d be even later to this wedding than was acceptable. “I can see you want to tell me who you’ve hired, so what’s his name? Or am I supposed to guess based on last month’s Architectural Digest article about the ‘it guy’ from Los Angeles?”

She’d seen her grandfather poring over those pages like they were printed in gold leaf. She hadn’t seen anything brilliant when she’d snatched the article from the breakfast table, but her inability to see modern trends was another excuse she’d offered as to why she’d make a lousy president of the firm.

Finish reading Chapter One on the Lone Star Book Blog Tours 8/13/17 Stop

Kimberly Fish started writing professionally with the birth of her second child and the purchase of a home computer. Having found this dubious outlet, she then entered and won The Writer’s League of Texas manuscript contest which fed her on-going fascination with story crafting.
She has since published in magazines, newspapers, and online formats and in 2017, released the first novel in a series set during the World War II years in Longview, Texas – The Big Inch.
She lives with her family in East Texas.
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Review: I JUST CAME HERE TO DANCE by Susan Mary Malone

banner-i-just-came-here-2-dance
I JUST CAME HERE 
TO DANCE
by
Susan Mary Malone
Genre: Literary Fiction
Publisher: White Bird Publications
Date of Publication: September 15, 2016
Number of Pages: 340

 

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Paula Anne Fairbanks understands all about the unexamined life. And she likes hers that way—until her world gets ripped smooth apart.
Running from reality, Paula falls under the mythological yarns being spun on Diana Maclean’s porch. Surely Paula’s own choices aren’t to blame for the summer of insanity she spends under the spells of Diana…who is, after all, known as the White Witch of Sociable,  Texas.
I JUST CAME HERE TO DANCE, a modern allegory, waltzes atop the line between the creative and the crazy, the sacred and the maligned. Through myths it weaves together the multi-layers of personal Self with that of the collective whole. And finally, Paula Anne and the townsfolk learn the simplest of truths: that the fire’s ashes produce wisdom and courage, just as the stories say.
PRAISE FOR I JUST CAME HERE TO DANCE:

     “Malone’s voice is one of the most charming I’ve read.  It brings the story and her characters to life.  I feel like I grew up with Paula right over the hill from the lively little town of Sociable, Texas.”  –New York Times bestselling author M. Leighton
“Susan Mary Malone pens well-crafted characters that are so vivid you can picture them in an award winning movie or television series.” –New York Times bestselling author Mary Honey B Morrison
“. . . a magical story about love ripped apart, a life examined, and then healed.  To be read slowly, to savor as one would a tall cool glass of lemonade, on a hot afternoon, watching the world become new.”  –Ginnie Siena Bivona, author of Ida Mae Tutweiler and the Traveling Tea Party, made into a Hallmark TV film, Bound by a Secret
review
Sociable, Texas.  We grow ’em big in Texas.  And this story is no exception.
Paula Ann Fairbanks’s life just changed.  After years of a shell of a marriage, she’s discovered her husband’s infidelity with a childhood friend (small towns are small…LOL).  Now she’s left a bit directionless,  but finds the friendship of the local eccentric, Diana, a great place to start her journey to self-discovery.  As she listens to the stories of the other characters on Diana’s porch, she learns about herself and her place in the world.
Small town, Texas.  Bigger than life characters.  Malone does it right here.  An excellent use of dialect to help her bring these women (and the men as well) to life on the page.
Growing up in Texas, and visiting family in small towns, I knew a few people who reminded me of some of these characters.  Malone has captured the true spirit of the just how BIG (and small) these small town folks truly are!  I recommend this book.

 

author-pic-malone
Texas native Susan Mary Malone has published two novels, co-authored four nonfiction books, and written many short stories. Her happiness is fiction, wine, and Labrador Retrievers, the latter of which she raises, trains, and shows. Literature is her love. In addition to writing, she edits; fifty-plus Malone-edited books have sold to traditional publishers, and one of them was made into a Hallmark Hall of Fame film (while another is in production, set to be released in 2015). Her stories revolve around the passions and purpose, the myths and meaning of women’s lives. Which often involves wine. She does, however, try to keep the Labradors out of that.
  
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Interview: Brett Burlison, author of RIVERSIDE

RIVERSIDE
by
Brett Burlison

Genre: Thriller / Suspense / Action Romance
Publisher: Barton Creek Press
Date of Publication: January 4, 2016
Number of Pages: 348
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It’s summer 1993 in Austin. Two young lovers decide to move in together and open a cafe only to be hindered by their own pasts, drugs, and bad guys from New Orleans. Set in Austin, Texas in the early nineties.
Bobby Patrick, abandoned by his mother as a child and by his alcoholic father during high school, wants a better life for himself and his true love, Katie. The couple decides to open a café and chase their dreams under the radiant Austin sunsets. There, the long, hot days of summer in inspire their passion–but complications arise when Katie’s former love interest returns, bringing with him a whirlwind of trouble.
As Katie’s dark past reveals itself, Bobby fears it could threaten all they have been striving for. Along with Katie’s best friend, Sara, with whom Bobby has his own secret history, the couple becomes tangled up in a drug deal and falls under close watch by Austin police and New Orleans mobsters. 
Bobby must find a way to protect Katie, help Sara, and help himself to thousands of dollars from the ill-fated deal. If he can’t, his future with Katie could be shattered forever. 

Part romance and part suspense story, Riverside is a tell-your-friends-about-it, good old-fashioned crime novel about a young couple struggling for the American dream, and the lengths to which they will go to protect it.

 

“A steamy tale and beguiling thriller, with plenty of local color and some provocative twists.” – Kirkus Reviews
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AuthorInterview
How has being a Texan influenced your writing?

When writing, the places you turn for material are the places and things you know. Having grown up, been educated, and lived in Texas a large portion of my life I have many places to turn to. Texas is a diverse place. I came to know much of that diversity before I started to write. I also think Texans, due to the influence of their experience and because of how that experience has been presented in art, view the world in a particular way. That view gets into your characters, your narrators, your vision. It’s nearly impossible to keep it out.


Why did you choose to write in your particular field or genre?

I write stories about individuals and couples struggling for the American dream — or at least the ideal of it. I believe that struggle defines us and our society and has for some time. It’s spiritual, and it influences most of the decisions we make in life. I don’t believe it to be strictly American, but our version of it is unique.


Where did your love of storytelling come from?

My love of storytelling began when I was nine years old and started entertaining my friends before school with stories I would make up. Some I wrote, some I memorized from notes, and some I simply made up on the spot. I was dyslexic; reading was a chore and nearly impossible until late in grade-school. And, never done for pleasure until college. My need to write stories and to share them with others came from within me.


How long have you been writing?

I followed other interests in school and became an attorney and still have a full time legal practice. I only began writing for publication with the release of my first novel in January 2016, though I’ve been writing stories and poems and thinking about writing since I was about ten.


What kind of writing do you do?

I write primarily about young couples and individuals struggling for the American dream.


What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

Watching a story and vision that has been rattling around in your head for years come to life on a page, and then turn into a physical book that you can hold, and whose pages you can flip through, is nothing short of amazing. Watching whole sections improve, chapters run better, paragraphs become more clear, and sentences work, though boiled down to their essentials, is breathtaking.


Do you have any strange writing habits you’d like to share with your readers?

Before I sit down to write I take a cold shower. Doesn’t matter the time. It’s great for the body in general and will wake up your senses like nothing else.


Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before?

Rome.


If you could speak with any accent from anywhere in the world, what would you choose?

Castilian Spanish, from Spain.


What’s something fun or funny that most people don’t know about you?

I’m a huge pot-head. Just kidding. Actually, I’m a good juggler and can play a decent African drum.


 

Brett Burlison is a writer, lawyer, and Texan living in Northern California. He grew up in the piney woods of East Texas and went to school in Austin.

He practices law in San Francisco, and writes romantic suspense stories about young couples up against difficult odds.
  
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Review: DEADLY ENCOUNTER by DiAnn Mills

DEADLY ENCOUNTER
(FBI: Task Force)
by
DiAnn Mills
Genre: Romance / Suspense / Christian
Publisher: Tyndale House
Date of Publication: August 1, 2016
Number of Pages: 376
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Airport Ranger volunteer Stacy Broussard expected a peaceful Saturday morning ride around the perimeter of Houston’s airport. What she encounters instead is a brutal homicide and a baffling mystery. Next to the body is an injured dog, the dead man’s motorcycle, and a drone armed with a laser capable of taking down a 747.
Though FBI Special Agent Alex LeBlanc sees a clear-cut case of terrorism, his past has taught him to be suspicious of everyone, even witnesses. Even bleeding-heart veterinarians like Stacy. But when her gruesome discovery is only the first in a string of incidences that throw her life into a tailspin, Alex begins to wonder if Stacy was targeted. As a health emergency endangers Stacy’s community, and the task force pulls in leads from all directions, Alex and Stacy must work together to prevent another deadly encounter.

Praise for the FBI: Houston novels

Deadlock: “This is a fast moving crime story with several interesting twists and turns. [Deadlock] is a page turner.” — Online Reviewer

 
Double-Cross:  
“Mills does a superb job of character and plot development in this faith-filled series.”Christian Library Journal
 
“Mills’ writing is transparently crisp, backed up with solid research, filled with believable characters and sparks of romantic chemistry.” Novel Crossing
 
Firewall:  
“Christy Award–winning Mills skillfully builds a menacing overall tone, and the tension level rises as layers of lies are peeled away in multiple plot twists. This novel, which takes off at a breakneck pace with a narrative arc that could have been ripped from today’s headlines, will greatly appeal to fans of James Patterson’s “Alex Cross” series and readers who enjoy psychological thrillers.” — Library Journal starred review
 
“Mills takes readers on an explosive ride. The terror is all the more chilling because it
could easily be a headline story on the nightly news, and Mills’ characters spring to life
through their fears, strengths, and quirks. A story as romantic as it is exciting, Fi
rewall
will appeal to fans of Dee Henderson’s romantic suspense stories.” —
Booklist 

Review

I thoroughly enjoyed the page-flipping ride in DEADLY ENCOUNTER by DiAnn Mills.  

A day, just like any other, turns into the beginning of a dangerous and deadly day at work for volunteer airport ranger, Stacy Broussard.  After discovering a dead body, a possible terroristic threat and an injured dog, Stacy is thrown into the middle of a whirlwind investigation with FBI Agent Alex LeBlanc as the two are forced to work together to save those around them from a deadly bio-terrorist attack.  Both Stacy and Alex must learn to trust in each other and find the strength through their Faith.

Another gripping suspense from DiAnn Mills.  What I love so much about these books (FBI Series) is how quickly I get sucked into the story with the opening pages.  Mills keeps the snowball rolling all the way to the end.   Great story line, nail-biting suspense, action from beginning to end, and characters who authentically deal with their issues with themselves and in relationships with others.  A great read!

Mills PicDiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She combines unforgettable characters with unpredictable plots to create action-packed, suspense-filled novels.

Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational ReadersChoice, and Carol award contests. Library Journal presented her with a Best Books 2014: Genre Fiction award in the Christian Fiction category for Firewall.

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She is co-director of The Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference and The Author Roadmap with social media specialist Edie Melson where she continues her passion of helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country.

DiAnn has been termed a coffee snob and roasts her own coffee beans. She’s an avid reader, loves to cook, and believes her grandchildren are the smartest kids in the universe. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.
DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on any of the social media platforms listed at http://www.diannmills.com.
 
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Author Interview: Dana Glossbrenner, author of THE LARK

THE LARK
by
Dana Glossbrenner
Genre: Humorous Literary Fiction
Publisher: Boldface Books
Date of Publication: June 7, 2016
Number of Pages: 270
Scroll down for Giveaway!
You’re never too old to learn—or too young
Good-looking, good-hearted Charley Bristow’s the most sought-after hair stylist in five West Texas counties. He’s an expert on the dance floor and sharp at the pool tables, too—but when it comes to pick­ing cars, dogs, and women, luck hasn’t quite gone his way lately. And there’s the ever-present worry over his mother, whose own trailer-park plight he’d just as soon steer clear of. 
Just when he’s sworn off temptation of the female sort, an evening at the local honky-tonk drives two prime targets right into his path. Weighing the sudden wealth of options in his love life, while also searching for the right choice of wheels to suit his needs, Charley stumbles upon a long-hidden secret and an unforeseen road to re­demption. 
The colorful denizens of the Wild Hare Salon, Jarod’s Automotive, and Hopper’s nightclub, along with those of the Briargrove First Methodist Church and the Sulfur Gap Centennial Celebration, will two-step their way right into your heart, to music as familiar as Willie Nelson and Charley Pride. And you just might start to fall in love with an old Johnny Mercer tune, too, as Charley Bristow faces his past and embraces the challenge of his future.
Praise for The Lark
“Good-time Charley” Bristow is a popular twenty-something West Texas hairstylist who’s already dodged two bullets with two failed marriages (the second time, literally). . . . The Lark invites us to join Charley’s friends, the rural cosmopolitans of Sulfur Gap, and ride shotgun alongside this rogue with an honest heart . . . on a journey into his past.  Dana Glossbrenner has crafted a totally engaging quest for happiness, set it in a totally genuine contemporary Texas, and delivered up great characters for a great read. Cliff Hudder, author of Splinterville and Pretty Enough for You
Charley Bristow takes some things seriously–work, dancing, pool-playing, and women, but maybe not in that order. He finds the true importance of friends and family. — Rick Smith, San Angelo Standard Times
AuthorInterview

How has being a Texan influenced your writing?

It’s hard to say. It’s like being asked, “How does it feel, being a twin?” I wouldn’t have anything to compare it to. I’ve never not been a Texan. But I’ll try. Texas has its own distinct culture, and it comes out in my writing, through the ways that people talk and their qualities of independence and resilience. I find myself describing the sky often, and that’s from living in a place where the sky is big. West Texas is a land of far-off horizons—those appear in my settings. They’re a cliché, but I don’t care. It’s what I see all around me every day. Although I avoid stereotypes, I do have first-hand knowledge of ranchers, oil field workers, and cotton farmers, and they populate my writing.

Where did your love of storytelling and bookish things come from?

My mother was a great storyteller and she read to me a lot. She was offhand about telling her stories, not trying too hard to make an impression, but she had a way of telling me about things she remembered from her long life—the execution of the Rosenbergs, Lindbergh’s transatlantic flight, rationing coupons in World War II, and arguments she had with her sisters. She unwittingly made me appreciate narrative.

How long have you been writing?

Always.  I wrote awful poetry as a teenager and young adult and sometimes kept a diary. I eventually began trying my hand at memoir about important things—flying with my pilot father, remembering my grandmother. I fell in love with the idea of the short story while I was teaching English to high school students and discovered Edgar Allen Poe’s “rule” that the short story aims at a single effect. So I began trying it, very haltingly. I gained confidence and started churning out short stories in my 40s and 50s. Finally, I realized that a novel was coming out of some of the characters in my short stories, and I finished my first novel, The Lark, at 63. I always enjoyed writing research papers, from elementary school through graduate work. I still enjoy researching and writing about local history.

What kind(s) of writing do you do?

I write both fiction and nonfiction. I’m over half through with a novel that follows up with some of the characters in The Lark, and I have a local history project simmering on the back burner.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

I liked the way the characters took on their own life, especially Charley. After a few chapters, Charley became very real to me, as did Lou, Darla, and April. Wayne came out of a short story, so he was there already. People ask me where these characters came from, and other than some of the minor characters, I’ve never known them before—they came out, landed on the page, and told their stories.

Who are some of your favorite authors you feel were influential in your work?  What impact have they had on your writing?

Larry McMurtry’s portrayal of modern Texans in some of his works inspired me, although I don’t imitate him. I think McMurtry showed me that a writer can let Texans be Texans and you can turn it loose from there. Elmer Kelton made a huge impression on me with The Time It Never Rained. I was born in 1951 and grew up during the times of the black sandstorms. I didn’t know it until I read Kelton’s work, but those early experiences jaded my view of nature. I wasn’t in the habit of looking for flowers along the road because there were sand dunes on the road around Monahans, where my father worked as a petroleum engineer in the early ’50s. Once Kelton brought out my memories of the drought of the 1950’s, I started noticing more of the beauty around me, and I woke up to those clichéd sunsets, mesas, and sunflower fields. Who wouldn’t want to write about that?

What did you find most useful in learning to write?  What was least useful or most destructive?

Most useful—reading. I couldn’t be a writer with being a reader first, and I’ve always been a reader. With all the exposure to books, I became a good judge of what made a piece of literature earn the title “good literature.” I read classics, murder mysteries, thrillers, biography, memoir, a little science fiction, and not much romance. I like fiction that doesn’t fit neatly into a genre. It allows for more surprise, and I intentionally avoided letting The Lark fit into a specific area of fiction. Also useful was sharing my work with people who appreciated what I was trying to do. I remember the first time—maybe 15 years ago—I read a short story aloud at a conference in honor of Elmer Kelton, and I could see people’s faces enjoying my story. That was huge.

Least useful was showing my writing to people who I knew would be critical, but I did it anyway, trying to win them over. I’ve learned that some people can’t be won over, that not everyone will like what I write, and I don’t need to pursue them.

Dana Glossbrenner’s debut novel, The Lark, features Charley Bristow, a successful young hair stylist in a small West Texas town. His misadventures provide humor, intrigue, and catharsis, as he discovers a lost family history. Women Behind Stained Glass: West Texas Pioneers, a historical work, recounts the lives of women who helped settle the area around San Angelo, Texas.

Glossbrenner taught high school and university English classes and worked as a guidance counselor. She grew up in Snyder, Texas, earned degrees from Texas Tech, Angelo State University, and Texas State University. She now lives in San Angelo, Texas.

She cites Larry McMurtry, Cormac McCarthy, and Elmer Kelton as major inspirations for writing about Texas.

 ————————————— 

 

GIVEAWAYS! GIVEAWAYS! GIVEAWAYS!
3 WINNERS EACH WIN SIGNED COPIES!
(US ONLY)
   July 25 – August 8, 2016

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:

7/25    StoreyBook Reviews– Review

7/26    The Librarian Talks – Author Interview #1

7/27    Texas Book Lover – Excerpt #1

7/28    Reading By Moonlight — Review

7/29    It’s a Jenn World – Author Interview #2

7/30    Country Girl Bookaholic – Review

7/31    The Crazy Booksellers — Promo

8/1       Missus Gonzo – Guest Post

8/2       Byers Editing Reviews & Blog – Excerpt #2

8/3       Kara The Redhead — Review

8/4       The Page Unbound – Author Interview #3

8/5       Margie’s Must Reads — Review

8/6       Books and Broomsticks — Promo

8/7       Forgotten Winds – Excerpt #3

8/8       My Book Fix Blog – Review

 

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Interview with author Kellie Coates Gilbert

WHAT MATTERS MOST 
(TEXAS GOLD COLLECTION BOOK #4)
by
Kellie Coates Gilbert
Genre: Contemporary Inspirational Romance / Christian
Publisher: Revell
Date of Publication: July 5, 2016
Number of Pages: 320
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Love and Politics Collide in This Emotion-Packed 
Fourth Texas Gold Novel
Kellie Coates Gilbert strikes gold once again in the latest book in the Texas Gold Collection. Readers will be drawn into the story through Gilbert’s deeply emotional writing that highlights the complexities of human relationships.
Out of her desire to care for her mother who is suffering from dementia, Leta Breckenridge drops out of college. Her next step means leaving her comfort zone. After learning that a delinquent account may force her mother into a less desirable facility, Leta takes a leap and lands a high-paying job at an Austin public relations firm. But her dream job soon turns into a nightmare when she learns that the firm she is working for is a front for a political opposition organization—and that the research she has been collecting will be used against Nathan Emerson, the handsome senator she’s swiftly falling in love with.
Nathan is a rising political star being pressured to run a bid to unseat the current governor of Texas. He’s already in a relationship with a woman much better suited to be a politician’s wife, but he’s never met anyone like Leta. Could this feisty woman hold the key to his heart—and his future?
Praise for the Texas Gold Collection
“This tale of family and faith brings to light what truly matters in life.”—RT Book Reviews, 4 stars
Kellie Coates Gilbert delivers emotionally gripping plots and authentic characters.LifeIsStory.com
“Well-drawn, sympathetic characters and graceful language make this an engaging choice for readers.”Library Journal
 
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AMAZON          CHRISTIANBOOK.COM
  
AuthorInterview

What did you find most useful in learning to write?  

I read a lot, which is essential in learning to write well, in my opinion.  At some point, I quit reading solely for entertainment and novels became my textbooks. I underline, highlight, note literary devices that work, and those that don’t. My shelves are filled with great writing that pushes me to excellence.

Are you a full-time or part-time writer and does that affect your writing?

After nearly twenty-five years as a legal professional, I transitioned to full-time novelist in 2012. I know many authors who write part-time.  For me, I’m a “both feet in” kind of gal.  Every ounce of my creativity and business acumen is focused on being the best novelist I can be. . . and it’s my great joy!

What are some day jobs that you have held?  Did any impact your writing?

Years ago, while going to high school, I earned extra money as a maid at the Sun Valley Lodge (I made Ted Kennedy’s bed once).  The ski lodge and the surrounding resort area are the backdrop for my upcoming series featuring three sisters, scheduled to begin releasing in early 2017.

Do you have any strange writing habits you’d like to share with your readers?

I don’t begin a book until I open an electronic file and fill it with photographs of celebrities that represent my characters.  I collect and store photos of locations, houses, cars, clothes…..and videos found on You Tube. This is how I visualize what I need to describe. This method also allows me to remain consistent throughout the book.  And somehow my brain starts firing up with story ideas when I am impacted visually.

Oh, and I drink FAR too much coffee in the process!  *winks*

How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?

I worked with a story consultant when I wrote the first book in the Texas Gold Collection. He urged me to name my protagonist CLAIRE MASSEY because it sounded like her character journey…..from “clear” to “messy.”  That is the only time I used that device, but I found it interesting and many agree that the name issued a subliminal message.  Would be interested to know if readers agree. . .

What is something you want to accomplish before you die?

Okay, I admit it!  I would like to be a New York Times bestselling author.

What do you want your tombstone to say?

She loved well because she loved God.

Kellie Coates Gilbert is a former legal investigator and trial paralegal, as well as the author of A Woman of Fortune, Where Rivers Part, and A Reason to Stay. Gilbert crafts her emotionally charged stories about women in life-changing circumstances in Dallas, Texas, where she lives with her husband.
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GIVEAWAY! THREE PRIZE PACKS!

 

Prize 1: Box of Texas Treats & Signed Book
Prize 2: $10 Starbucks Gift Card & Signed Book
Prize 3: $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card & Signed Book
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   June 11 – July 25, 2016

CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:

7/11    Margie’s Must Reads  – Review

7/12    Hall Ways Blog – Author Interview #1

7/13    The Page Unbound – Excerpt

7/14    Reading By Moonlight – Review

7/15    It’s a Jenn World – Promo

7/16    Country Girl Bookaholic – Guest Post #1

7/17    My Book Fix Blog – Review

7/18    The Crazy Booksellers  – Author Interview #2

7/19    Chapter Break Book Blog – Guest Post #2

7/20    StoreyBook Reviews – Review

7/21    The Librarian Talks – Author Interview #3

7/22    All for the Love of the Word – Promo

7/23    Byers Editing Reviews & Blog – Review

7/24    A Novel Reality – Promo

7/25    Missus Gonzo – Review

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WINNING TEXAS
by 
Nancy Stancill 
Genre: Mystery / Thriller / Suspense
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Date of Publication: April 26, 2016
# of pages: 230
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When a female body is found floating in the Houston Ship Channel, Annie Price, an investigative journalist for a struggling Houston newspaper, is propelled into a dangerous web of intrigue. She must solve a complex mystery that includes a corrupt strip club empire, a ruthless human trafficking scheme, and deadly competition between two separatist groups seeking to impose their twisted visions on the Lone Star State. As two murders hit close to home, Annie and a fellow reporter risk death to expose the hidden secrets of a Texas ranch.
PRAISE FOR WINNING TEXAS:

“Sex traffickers and guns-for-hire meet in a nefarious plot to see Texas secede and America shaken to its core. Witty, gritty and filled with brilliantly realized characters, this book is a pure delight for lovers of suspense as the ever-dogged Annie Price risks life and limb to uncover the truth.” – Tony D’Souza, author of Mule
 
Winning Texas is a moody thriller, an ode to people with outsized dreams and the ones they prey on; to those who populate the city by day, and those who rule the night. In the wake of L.A.-noir and Florida glare, Nancy Stancill gives us Bayou City grime. In her pages, Houston seduces and leaves us breathless, begging for more.” – Stefan Kiesbye, author of The Staked Plains
 
Nancy Stancill “captures a newsroom’s camaraderie and angst . . . while her descriptions of Houston and the whole of Texas make you feel the heat and see its beauty.” — Mary Cornatzer, The News & Observer
  PURCHASE LINKS:

AMAZON

Review
WINNING TEXAS is a thrilling ride through the world of investigative reporter Annie Price.
Annie Price always seems to be in the middle of something.  But she’s an investigative journalist with the last remaining print newspaper in Houston, TX, so she’s pretty used to that.  On the heels of a wild story about the secessionist movement in the state, which led to it’s leaders fleeing the country, Annie is thrown back into the chaos.  She learns that the secessionist group is still active while exposing a local business mogul for his activities in a large human trafficking ring.  Along the way, Annie learns a thing or two about herself, and watches progress take the thing she loves most and tear it apart.
This was a great story, full of all of the things you would expect from investigative suspense.  The plot was complex and multi-layered and moved the story along at a pace that kept the reader in the game.  The characters were authentic, and easy to visualize and follow.  I liked that they were all very human, faulted.  The subject of the book was realistic and follows many of the real things that make the news in Texas everyday.  I applaud the author for addressing the very real issue of human trafficking in Texas.  I highly recommend this book to readers who enjoy a mystery with a crazy ride.  Lovers of political suspense and investigative thrillers will get a kick out of this one as well.

Nancy Stancill spent more than 30 years as a newspaper reporter and editor before she began writing fiction full-time. She was an award-winning investigative reporter at the Houston Chronicle and the Charlotte (N.C.) Observer and worked as a reporter and editor at other newspapers in Texas, Virginia and California. Stancill is a journalism graduate of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill and received her master’s in creative writing from the University of Tampa in Florida in 2015.  She and her husband lived in London for three years before moving back to the United States in 2012.  She has a son in Virginia and she lives in Charlotte, N.C. with her husband, Len Norman, and black cat, Spud. Saving Texas was her first novel. Winning Texas is her second.
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TWO WINNERS EACH WIN:
* Signed Copies of Winning Texas and Saving Texas *
* $15 Starbucks Gift Card * 
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  June 30 – July 9, 2016
Check out the other great blogs on the tour!
6/30    Texas Book Lover  – Promo
7/1       The Librarian Talks Review
7/2       Margie’s Must Reads – Excerpt
7/3       A Novel Reality — Promo
7/4       Country Girl Bookaholic  Review
7/5       The Crazy Booksellers  – Promo
7/6       The Page Unbound  – Guest Post
7/8       Forgotten Winds – Author Interview                    
7/9       StoreyBook Reviews  Review
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LSLL Blog Tour: A Review of NO OTHER WILL DO by Karen Witemeyer

 

NO OTHER WILL DO
by 
Karen Witemeyer
Genre: Historical Western Romance / Inspirational
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Date of Publication: June 7, 2016
Number of Pages: 368
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Men are optional. That was the credo Emma Chandler’s suffragette aunts taught her and why she established Harper’s Station, a women’s colony that offers a fresh start to females in need. But when a dangerous and shadowy assailant tries repeatedly to drive the women out, Emma is forced to admit they might need a man after all. One who can fight. And there is only one man she trusts enough to ask.
Malachi Shaw has finally earned the respect he’s always craved by becoming an explosives expert for the railroad. Yet when Emma’s telegram arrives, he rushes back to Texas to repay the girl who once saved his life. Only she’s not a girl any longer. She’s a woman with a mind of her own and a smile that makes a man imagine a future he doesn’t deserve.
As the danger intensifies, Emma, Mal, and the ladies of Harper’s Station must choose between safety or risking everything to fight for their future.
PRAISE FOR THE BOOK:
“Witemeyer’s latest is an entertaining read with plenty of drama and action, a smidgen of suspense and two main characters with perfect chemistry . . . And of course, the romance is tender and sigh-worthy—a key reason why her readers keep coming back for more.”  
RT Book Reviews

 

PURCHASE FROMAMAZON      BARNES & NOBLE     CHRISTIANBOOK.COM

 

Review

Witemeyer does it again with a skillful blend of history, danger and romance.

NO OTHER WILL DO is about a women’s colony founded by Emma Chandler to give a fresh start to women and their children in need (much like our modern day women’s shelter, but imagine a completely self-sufficient town).  Unfortunately, in the days of the “Old West” mentality, men didn’t take kindly to this settlement where no men were allowed, and deemed it unnatural for so many women to live in this community together, doing “man’s work” to support their own existence.  Insert conflict.  Someone wants the land, and is willing to destroy the town and it’s inhabitants to drive them out.  Emma sends for help from her childhood friend, Malachi Shaw.  He rushes to their aid, but neither of them are prepared for the attraction they have for one another.  Amidst the danger of saving the colony from the bad guys, those feelings blossom into a wonderful romance.

I have to say that Karen WItemeyer is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors in Historical Romance.  I even forget that these stories are classified under the Inspirational or Christian Fiction label, as the stories are just so good that I can’t stop turning pages to see what happens next.  With the perfect blend of history, suspense, and sweet romance, Witemeyer weaves an action-packed story with well-developed and completely lovable characters.  Even the secondary characters, such as the suffragette aunts are wonderful and memorable.

I highly recommend NO OTHER WILL DO to fans of historical romances set in the West and even those who like a little more suspense and action.  There is a little bit of everything for you in this book.

Winner of the HOLT Medallion and the Carol Award and a finalist for the RITA and Christy Award, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer writes historical romance to give the world more happily-ever-afters. Karen makes her home in Texas, with her husband and three children.
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FIVE WINNERS EACH GET
A SIGNED COPY OF THE BOOK!
  June 1 – June 10, 2016
CHECK OUT THE OTHER GREAT BLOGS ON THE TOUR:

6/1       Missus Gonzo               — Excerpt #1
6/2       My Book Fix Blog          — Review
6/3       Books and Broomsticks — Author Interview #1
6/4       StoreyBook Reviews     — Guest Post
6/5       Margie’s Must Reads    — Review
6/6       A Novel Reality — Promo
6/7       The Page Unbound       — Excerpt #2
6/8       Byers Editing Reviews & Blog     — Review
6/9       Country Girl Bookaholic — Author Interview #2
6/10     The Librarian Talks        — Review
 
 
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LSLL Blog Tour: Review – ON LONE STAR TRAIL by Amanda Cabot

On Lone Star Trail
(Texas Crossroads Book 3)
by 
Amanda Cabot
CABOT_TC3_OnLoneStarTrail.indd

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Revell, a division of Baker Group
Date of Publication: February 2, 2016
# of pages: 368
The Future Starts When You Let Go of the Past

“She wasn’t looking for love at Rainbow’s End,  just a change of scenery and a chance to rest”

Sometimes our past tries desperately to navigate our future. But what if facing our fear and going against our protective impulses is the key to our fuOLST Cover.jpegture? In Amanda Cabot’s final book in her Texas Crossroads series, an unlikely couple discovers that their differences
just might be what
bring them together. 

Gillian Hodge was heading toward a fulfilling life as a concert pianist when her dreams and career were shattered by a motorcyclist. Now she once again faces an encounter with a motorcyclist whose bike crashes in front of her. 

TJ Benjamin, who has been wandering around the country on his motorcycle, is recovering from the death of his beloved wife and feeling lost in both his life and his faith. When he finds himself stranded with a busted bike and a reluctant rescuer, he has to wonder about God’s sense of humor. 

Can a woman with an uncertain future and a man running to forget his past find love at Rainbow’s End? Or are they too tied to the way life used to be? These vivid characters develop and grow while readers enjoy the beautiful Texas setting.   

BUY LINKS

Baker Retail    Amazon   Barnes&Noble   Christianbook.com


Review

It has been said that one finds their faith when nothing is left to get in the way.  This story is about two people, who have experienced their own personal losses, and in their own individual ways of escaping their problems, are thrust into each other’s paths.  Rainbow’s End becomes their sanctuary for healing and rediscovery.  Once the two characters discover the truths about themselves, they are able to let go of their pasts, and start living for the future.  Of course, there is romance, and falling in love with the Texas landscape.  I recommend ON LONE STAR TRAIL to anyone looking for a great story about love, loss and moving on with a happily ever after to leave you with a smile.
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Amanda Cabot is the bestselling author of the Texas Dreams series, the Westward Winds series, Christmas Roses, At Bluebonnet Lake, and In Firefly Valley. Her books have been finalists for the ACFW Carol Awards and the Booksellers’ Best Awards. She lives in Wyoming.
BLOG      WEBSITE    
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Check out these other great blog stops on the tour!

2/11 My Book Fix Blog – Author Interview
2/12  The Crazy Booksellers – Promo
2/13  Missus Gonzo – Review
2/15  Hall Ways Blog – Promo
2/16  Books and Broomsticks – Promo
2/19  The Page Unbound – Promo
2/20  Book Crazy Gals – Promo
2/21  Texas Book-aholic – Review
2/23  A Novel Reality – Promo
2/24  The Librarian Talks — Review
2/25  Secret Asian Girl – Review

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