Saturday, October 23, 2021

Wonders of the Galaxy by Various Elk Lake Authors

 

 


About the Book

 


Book:  Wonders of the Galaxy

Author: Various Elk Lake Authors

Genre: Speculative Fiction

Release date: September 15, 2021

 

A series of space tales based on parables from the Holy Bible.

 

Click HERE to get your copy!

 


My Review

This book really pushed my horizons as far as genres go, but I always enjoy exploring new genres so I was excited to read this collection. While Sci-Fi isn't really my thing, I think that many could enjoy the short stories found within especially the YA fiction crowd. The way they paralleled Biblical parables I think was a genius way to share the truth of the Bible without being overbearing and within a genre that YA audience could relate to more easily and willingly. The stories were all adventurous and took us to the outer limits to wonder what we would find there so they were intriguing for sure. There were relatable characters and well developed challenges the characters faced to learn valuable lessons. As far as transporting you to a cosmic region, I felt transported for sure! I recommend this book especially for YA fiction audience, but for anyone looking to explore new genres, enjoys short adventurous stories, or enjoys Sci Fi genres.


I received a complimentary copy of this book, and all opinions given are entirely my own. 



About the Authors



Jason William Karpf is a multitalented actor, musician, professor, and Jeopardy champion whose writing runs the gamut from true crime to speculative fiction.

 

 

 



Aaron Gansky is an award-winning novelist and Dungeons and Dragons whiz who lives for his children, coaching football, and watch Marvel movies.

 

 

 



Erica Marie Hogan’s books range from long ago historical dramas to frozen fantasies on faraway planets. Regardless of where the story originates, it comes from the heart—because Erica believes genres are transcendent.

 

 

 



Brett Heaston is the creator of the Message to Kings podcast and the author of The Resilience Awakening. He lives in the Pacific Northwest, a history nerd, and an adventure junkie.

 

 

 



Steve South is a traveler, a karaoke singer, and a profound believer in the power for stories to move people; his first novel, The Queen of Steel and Fire, won the 2019 Minnesota Author Project Award for YA fiction.

 

 

 



L.G. Westlake lives in the “Land of Enchantment,” but also lives a dream life in far-flung galaxies where she regularly charts the unknown; her previous novels have included award-winning fantasies and thrillers.

 

 

 



M B Dahl is a wife, mother, and award-winning author of dystopian adventures. She loves dressing up like a warrior and fighting dragons, imaginary or real.

 

 

 



T.E. Bradford is an international bestselling author, a Selah award finalist, and a self-proclaimed geek who believes her writing is “a little piece of magic” given to her by God.

 

 

 



Travis W. Inman has been a cowboy, a missionary, a soldier, and more in his multi-storied career, and his stories reflect his diverse background. In his spare time, he searches for hidden treasure, both financial and culinary.

 

 

 

More from the Editor

WHY A CHRISTIAN SPACE OPERA?

 

“What do you like to read,” I asked my seventeen-year-old grandson.

 

When he said he likes Space Opera, I had to admit I was lost. I love Science Fiction but didn’t know Space Opera was different. After ordering him a book, I started doing some research. Phrases like, “wildly popular” spoke to me.

 

Christians use a variety of fiction genres to reach their audiences. I wondered if we were losing younger readers because we are not being relevant to what interests them. Could this genre be presented in a way to encourage young readers to see new truths in the Bible?

 

Space Opera is a subgenre of science fiction and usually emphasizes space warfare, melodramatic space adventures, or chivalric romance. These themes, while occurring in outer space, will feature such elements as faster-than-light travel, futuristic weapons, and sophisticated technology.

 

Not surprising this genre is popular with kids today whose lives evolve around the latest technological advancement.

 

The name is a takeoff from “soap opera” because of its melodramatic presentation. Space operas emerged in the 1930s and continue to be produced in literature, film, comics, television, and video games.

 

As I pondered these concepts, an idea developed to present a Space Opera anthology, aimed at high school level, to use the parables as inspiration behind the stories. When I presented the idea to my publisher, I received an enthusiastic nod of approval. And the rest is history.

 

We are confident young people will enjoy these highly imaginative stories penned by some of Elk Lake’s best authors. Each story contains a synopsis of the related parable and how the parable is used in the telling of the story. Additionally, each story has an engaging graphic to whet the imagination.

 

To our knowledge, this is new for Christian publishing. We look forward to our readers’ comments and to Wonders of the Galaxy II in 2022.

 

Linda Wood Rondeau

Project Manager



Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, October 18

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 18

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, October 19

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, October 20

Cats in the Cradle Blog, October 20

Texas Book-aholic, October 21

Inklings and notions, October 22

By the Book, October 22

A Reader’s Brain, October 23

For Him and My Family, October 24

April Hayman, Author, October 24

deb’s Book Review, October 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, October 26

Blogging With Carol, October 26

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, October 27

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, October 28

Blossoms and Blessings, October 28

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, October 29

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, October 30

Pause for Tales, October 30

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, October 31



Giveaway


To celebrate their tour, the Various Elk Lake Authors are giving away the grand prize package of a book from each author in the anthology!! (Format may vary for each book)

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/122a1/wonders-of-the-galaxy-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Silent Altitudes by Michael James Emberger

 


About the Book



Book: Silent Altitudes

Author: Michael James Emberger

Genre: Cli-Fi Thriller (Climate Fiction/Thriller)

Release date: March 30, 2021
The world looks up to the sky in hopeful anticipation as the Pennychuck Atmospheric Carbon Reduction System comes online. Finally the chance to eliminate global warming will be obtainable.

Within moments, something goes terribly wrong. Dr. Milford Pennychuck races to find the underlying problem that caused so much destruction. Yet when an assassination attempt and system sabotage blindsides him, he has to rely on a surprising ally.

Together they delve into a conspiracy deeper than they can fathom. As the system operates at progressively higher altitudes, the two scientists must find a way to shut it down…or die trying.


Click HERE to get your copy!



My Review

I found Silent Altitudes to be relevant, intriguing, and action packed and perfect for adult or YA readers. The premise of being able to heal the effects of global warming once and for all without making the book overly political was such an interesting premise. Both heroes and villains were well developed- making us feel like we were on the trek with them and getting to know them better all the time. The gospel theme was naturally weaved in without being overbearing. The climax of all the action really was worth waiting for and the scenes took us all over the country. I believe anyone who enjoys reading about environmental change, adventure books, action books, as well as the general YA audience would enjoy this read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book, and all opinions given are entirely my own.


About the Author

 



Michael James Emberger
 is an author of thrillers and suspense, and he resides in Wilton, New Hampshire. He enjoys weaving narratives of conspiracy and misguided intentions around divisive topics. Where there is debate, there is always room for a villain with goals far out of alignment from either side. Michael is a graduate of Messiah College, where he studied Engineering and met his wife racing solar cars cross-country. When he’s not working on home renovations or writing, he enjoys visiting the ocean and exploring the majesty of God’s creation on the summits of New Hampshire’s mountains.


More from Michael

Silent Altitudes is a Cli-fi (Climate Fiction) thriller set in the near future. I wanted to avoid the current political debates over global warming, so I went with the assumption that the world eventually comes to consensus about what to do. The United Nations rolls out an elaborate technological solution, but sabotage and conspiracy lead to disaster on startup day. That’s the type of angle I enjoy writing. Climate change is the backdrop, but this book is about family and survival and fighting against the greed and corruption that have laid good intentions to ruin. It’s about loss and hope and trusting that God is still in control even when everything seems hopeless.

A significant inspiration for this book was a phrase my daughter would say when she was little: “Hold you Mommy.” It meant she wanted a hug. I contacted Laura, a pottery artist on Etsy, and ordered a custom mug with that phrase as a Christmas present for my wife. Laura was a joy to work with, and our conversation led to me developing characters and themes that provided the heart of my story. I find it’s those little inspirations that make the biggest difference in my writing.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 18

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, September 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 19

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 20

Rebecca Tews, September 21

Texas Book-aholic, September 22

Inklings and notions, September 23

For Him and My Family, September 24

Blogging With Carol, September 24

deb’s Book Review, September 25

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 26

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 27

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 28

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, September 29

A Reader’s Brain, September 30

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, September 30

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 1


Giveaway


To celebrate his tour, Michael is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/119f6/silent-altitudes-celebration-tour-giveaway

Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Illusion of Love by Sarah Hamaker

 


 

About the Book

 


Book:  Illusion of Love

Author: Sarah Hamaker

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release date: October 2020

A suspicious online romance reconnects an agoraphobe and an old friend.

Nursing a hurt leg, psychiatrist Jared Quinby arrives in Culpeper, Virginia, on a case for the FBI. The investigation leads him to the doorstep of his childhood best friend, Mary Divers. Meeting Mary again is the one bright spot in his life.

Suffering from agoraphobia, Mary has at last found love with online beau David Kline and dares to dream of a future with him. Then David reveals he will be leaving the United States to become a missionary in Peru. Determined to stop living in fear, she accepts David’s marriage proposal, even though she’s never met him face-to-face.

As Jared’s case intersects with Mary’s online relationship, the more he uncovers, the more he fears for her safety. Jared tries to convince Mary not all is right with David, but she refuses to believe him. When tragedy strikes, Mary pushes Jared even farther away.

Will Jared convince Mary of the truth—and of his love for her—before it’s too late?


Click here to get your copy!



My Review

I enjoyed this contemporary suspenseful romance. I really felt both Jared and Mary were beautifully complex and really became likable along the way. Their connection and the reality of the struggles in each of their lives and how their romance so slowly blossomed was like layers of the perfect onion. David was quite the the devious one and it was easy to dislike him easily too. The book reminded me that while sometimes we like to think Hallmark movies are reality, they really aren't and really should be confined to an entertaining movie to enjoy. I think the author did a good job of integrating the FBI and their investigation into the story without losing the heart and charm of the story, and I felt like the secondary characters were well developed as well. I did think the ending was a little bit too much of an info dump at one time. Also, the language used through the online chat etc. seemed a little dated. Overall I think anyone who would enjoy a good clean contemporary fiction/romance should pick this one up.

I received a complimentary copy of this book, and all opinions given are entirely my own.



About the Author



Sarah Hamaker has been spinning stories since she was a child, with nonfiction and romantic suspense books published. Her stories have also appeared in several Chicken Soup for the Soul volumes. She’s a member of ACFW and ACFW Virginia Chapter, as well as the president of Capital Christian Writers Fellowship. Her podcast, “The Romantic Side of Suspense,” can be found wherever you listen to podcasts. Sarah lives in Virginia with her husband, four children, and three cats.


More from Sarah

Have you ever heard a story from a friend (or a friend of a friend) and thought it sounded more like fiction than reality? That’s what happened to me years ago when I heard first-hand a story about a woman who had been deceived by someone close to her.

Even while I grieved with my friend about the lies that had been told at her expense, I also admit to thinking, “That would make a fantastic storyline.” A couple of years later, I asked the friend for permission to use the basic outline of that story for what became Illusion of Love. To keep this friend’s identity a secret—and to avoid giving away the ending of my book—that’s all I can reveal to you.

However, what I can talk about is how interesting people’s reaction to the based-on-a-true story aspect has been along this book’s journey to publication. Most expressed their conviction that something similar could never happen to them. Part of that disbelief comes from our faith in our own ability to ferret out the truth from those around us.

Unfortunately, time and again, it’s been proven that we can be terrible when it comes to judging the true character of others! This is why people get away with pretending to be royalty or people lose money to someone’s Ponzi scheme or why those in authority can often get away with heinous crimes for years (#MeToo, Catholic priest sexual scandals are too horrific examples). Along the way, you’ll find people who wanted to think they wouldn’t be deceived…and were or who overlooked signs that in hindsight pointed right at the lie or perpetrator.

Why has this kept happening over and over again throughout history? I think it boils down to the simple fact that we want to believe we have excellent judgment when it comes to the character and intentions of others, whether we meet those people face to face or online. We also have a tendency, especially if we’re female, to ignore our gut when it tells us to be careful or wary of someone or a particular situation.

Especially when there’s real danger involved—in cases of potential abuse or criminal activity—it’s important to be prepared as much as we can be. One of the best books on this topic is Gavin de Becker’s The Gift of Fear. It’s a book I’ve recommended my teenage daughters and sons read before heading to college. What Gavin does is break down why our initial impressions can be wrong and why paying attention to our gut—that unconscious part of ourselves—can be crucial to staying safe, even if it means we sometimes offend or make people mad or upset. If only Mary, my heroine in Illusion of Love, had read The Gift of Fear, things might have turned out differently for her.

Why do you think we believe in our own judgment when it comes to people?

Blog Stops


Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 15

CarpeDiem, September 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 16

Inklings and notions, September 17

Texas Book-aholic, September 18

lakesidelivingsite, September 18

For Him and My Family, September 19

deb’s Book Review, September 20

Mary Hake, September 20

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 21

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 22

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, September 23

A Reader’s Brain, September 23

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, September 24

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 25

Pause for Tales , September 25

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 26

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, September 27 (Author Interview)

Spoken from the Heart, September 27

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 28

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Sarah is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card & eBook copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/119e8/illusion-of-love-celebration-tour-giveaway

A Giant Murder by Marji Laine

 

 


About the Book

 


Book:  A Giant Murder

Author: Marji Laine

Genre: Christian Historical Mystery, Fairytale retelling

Release date: August 3, 2021

Would you like a shot of… death with that, sir?

Josephine Jacobs was just doing her job, serving at an exclusive party, so why is she now being accused of shooting TG Taggert?

At a party full of suspects in the murder of Taggert, Josie served the food giant everything but an eternally “parting shot.” Who really killed TG Taggert?  His wife?  His son, Jack?  What about Harper Davis?  Rumor has it, she was having an affair with him—motive for her or Taggert’s wife! The list of those who seemed to hate him keeps growing, including a chemist and a chef!

With her long-time friend, Office Porter O’Brien, Josie sets out to find out who really killed “the giant,” and clear her name.

Find out in this next book in the Ever After Mysteries, combining beloved fairy tales and mysteries. A Giant Murder offers a retelling of “Jack and the Beanstalk” with enough clues and suspects to keep you looking over your shoulder. We’d recommend Kevlar… but it hasn’t been invented yet!


Click here to get your copy!


My Review

I found A Giant Murder to be an adventure into the 1920s. Josephine is an innocent, unassuming, caring girl just trying to do her job and enjoying her chance to serve at a glitzy party with all the big wigs. The murder that ensues points to her although we all know it can't be her. Josephine and Office O'Brien were well developed and I found myself liking the characters as people I would like to meet in real life. The mystery is not horribly shocking where it would make some uncomfortable but enough to keep you reading waiting for the conclusion of all the twists and turns. I found the gospel message to be inserted naturally without being overbearing as well as a sweet romance. I found the historical detail spot on. I think those who enjoy mystery or historical fiction or just an adventurous read will like this one.

I received a complimentary copy of this book, and all opinions given are entirely my own. 


About the Author



Marji Laine is a graduated home-schooling mom of four with two college students staying in the nest for a little longer. She and her hubby of 34 years also share their North Texas home with a rescue pup named Rosie. When Marji isn’t editing or publishing the books for her authors at Write Integrity Press, she indulges in penning her own mystery, suspense, and romance novels. She loves acting in musical comedy, has directed many stage productions, leads a high school Bible study and sings in her church choir. She prefers mountains to beaches, dogs to cats, NASCAR to football, Magnolia pie, white roses, green, and Hallmark Movies and Mysteries. You can find her at her website: MarjiLaine.com


More from Marji



I so enjoyed researching the history of downtown Dallas as I crafted my story, A GIANT MURDER. The house that I chose for Josie and her mom is actually still there on Haskell Avenue. The photo with the wrought iron is about twenty years old, but the house was built circa 1914. The photo with the wooden fence is from last year, after a big remodel. This house was also the setting of another of my books. It and the field that used to be next to it was an after-school child care center in AIN’T MISBEHAVING.




Thinking about what life might have been like in this house in the twenties, I can’t
help but think about my grandparents. They were teenagers at the time of my story – 1926 – and while my grandfather grew up in, what was then, a little farming town called Paris, Texas, my grandmother grew up in Oak Cliff, just across the bridge over the Trinity River from this house in downtown Dallas.

Makes the research that I did on this era even that much more special. Having come through COVID, I realize that my great-grandparents had to nurture their preteens and teenagers through the Spanish Flu that devastated whole communities. The more things change, the more they stay the same?

All of this reminiscing sent me to an old recipe book that had been a wedding present for me from my mom almost thirty-five years ago. In the dessert section near the back, I found a precious recipe for Date Candy that had come by way of my great-grandmother, Carrie Ethel Leatherwood Morin. I never met her, but I do remember hearing from my mom that she was a woman of faith, and I have a poem she wrote late in life, about growing up in the country.

I would say this is a 1920s recipe, but who could tell? She was a middle-aged mom at that point, so it’s a good bet.

Date Candy

1 box – light brown sugar

4 T – corn syrup

½ pt – whipping cream

1 cup – dates

1 cup – pecans

1 t – vanilla


Mix sugar, syrup, and cream. Cook until almost a hard ball. Just before removing from pan, put in dates and stir until they melt. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Beat until almost hard – then add pecans. Wet a cup towel. Pour mixture onto cup towel and roll into a roll. Let it cool – firm – then slice.


Let me know if you decide to make my great-grandmother’s candy. I’d love to find out how it turned out!

Blog Stops


Texas Book-aholic, September 17

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 17

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 18

For the Love of Literature, September 18

Inklings and notions, September 19

Gina Holder, Author and Blogger, September 19 (Author Interview)

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, September 20

For Him and My Family, September 20

deb’s Book Review, September 21

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 21

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 22

A Reader’s Brain, September 23

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 23

Connie’s History Classroom, September 24

Simple Harvest Reads, September 24 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, September 25

Mary Hake, September 25

Rebecca Tews, September 26

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 26

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 27

Connect in Fiction, September 28

Bigreadersite, September 28

Through the fire blogs, September 29

Blogging With Carol, September 30

Back Porch Reads, September 30


Giveaway


To celebrate her tour, Marji is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/119f5/a-giant-murder-celebration-tour-giveaway