Giver of Wonders Blog Tour, Review, and #Giveaway

Hey y’all! I have a new book that NEEDS to go on your MUST read list. Giver of Wonders by Roseanna M. White. Until this book, I had not read any of her writing. I’ve wanted to. I’ve heard good things and I have several of her books on my To Be Read list. Giver of Wonders was an incredible introduction to her writing for me! I will definitely be reading more by her. Check out the synopsis of the book, some thoughts from the author, and then I’ll share my thoughts about this book. Don’t forget to enter the giveaway at the end.

giver-of-wonders-banner

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Book

giver-of-wonders-front-194x300

A miracle once saved her life ~ will another give her a future?

Cyprus was little more than a child when a fall left her paralyzed…and when the boy known as the wonder-worker healed her. Ever since, she has wondered why the Lord spared her, what he has in store for her. But her pagan father thinks she was spared solely so she could be introduced to the wealthy wonder-worker, Nikolaos.

Nikolaos has never questioned that his call in life is to dedicate himself to the church and to God. Never, that is, until he and his cousin Petros meet the compelling Cyprus Visibullis. For years he struggles with the feelings she inspires…and with the sure knowledge that Petros loves her too.

Petros knows he will never be good enough for Cyprus’s father to consider him as a match for his favorite daughter not as long as Nikolaos is there. But when tragedy strikes the Visibullis family, he will do anything to save his beloved. Unfortunately, his beloved is determined to do anything to save her sisters ~ even at the cost of herself.

As the festival of lights bathes their Greek city in beauty, Cyprus, Petros, and Nikolaos celebrate the miracle of their Savior s birth together one last time. And in remembrance of their Lord’s greatest gift, one of them will make the ultimate sacrifice for the others…and a centuries-long tradition will be born.

About the Author

roseannajuly2016-1-185x300

Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two small children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of a slew of historical novels and novellas, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her new British series. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to make their way into her novels…to offset her real life, which is blessedly boring. You can learn more about her and her stories at www.RoseannaMWhite.com.

Guest Post from Roseanna White

I was fed up with Christmas.

Or, no. I was fed up with the Christmas the world kept shoving at me. The one that was all about presentes. I’d always enjoyed gift giving and receiving, but I began to wonder: What was it I really valued—my Savior . . . or the stuff? We all say the right thing when this question is brought up. But we also all talk about “giving people Christmas” who can’t afford it. About how disappointed our kids might be if they wake to few packages under the tree. And you know, that belies our claims that it’s all about Jesus, doesn’t it?

And of course, when one thinks of gifts at Christmas, a jolly old elf springs to mind. So I started thinking that if I wanted my kids to understand the meaning of Christmas, it might be time to pull the plug on the embodiment of the commercialism: Santa Claus.

But I’m a historical novelist, and I believe in looking at the real history before making decisions. So one morning before our homeschool day began, I sat down and did some online research about Saint Nicholas. About the traditions he began that persist to this day. Who was he, before the Victorians turned him into the figure we know today as Santa?

I read. And I was awed.

Within fifteen minutes, I realized that St. Nick wasn’t the problem with Christmas. This was a man who was committed, above all, to honoring Jesus. Who believed in giving anonymously, so that all the glory went to God. Who performed miracles. Who healed and shepherded a flock under persecution.

St. Nicholas was a man who deserves my honor and respect. Who should be my inspiration for what Christmas is really about, not my scapegoat.

Nicholas gave generously—and in secret. It wasn’t until after his death that the stories started making their rounds about the many times he quietly gave of his wealth. But for centuries afterward, whenever someone wanted to give a gift anonymously, they would sign it from St. Nicholas—it was like saying, “This is because God loves you.”

Why are we giving? Is it to give God glory . . . or to please ourselves and our families? Would you still give if you got no credit for it? If no one even knew it was from you?

That day I read about St. Nicholas, I also decided I’d write a book with him as one of the main characters. A novel that brings one of our traditions—gifts coming down chimneys, stockings stuffed with goodies—to life. And so, we have Giver of Wonders.

Is it a Christmas story? It is. But not like the others out there. Is it about Santa Claus? It is, but not the version you see all over your TV. Is it about giving? It is. But not about presents wrapped and put under the tree. It’s about sacrifice. And it’s about Jesus. And it’s about what He really asks of us, and what He really did for us. And what we’re willing to give for love of Him.

Because that, my friends, is Christmas.

My Thoughts on Giver of Wonders

Giver of Wonders captured my attention and drew me into the stories of each of the three main characters from the very start. Immediately within meeting Cyrpus, Petros, and Nik, I felt that I knew them. Ms. White was quick to show their commonalities, the things that drew them together as well as some of their very distinguishing characteristics such as Cyprus’s rashness and impatience, Petros’ joy and humor in life, and Nik’s solid calling. And she demonstrated rather than tell. The side characters are equally well done. I felt as though I were taken back to that very time as I read. It was such a thought provoking thing to really consider what life might have been like for Christians then, to see them as real people and not just as faceless members of history. The true natures and characters of the players in the story are revealed through the struggles they face. There are characters that made me stop and say, “I want to trust God like that.” And yet others that made me see that I would not want to follow the path they had chosen. I couldn’t help but think, “Who am I in this story?” Someone in this story is probably going through the feelings you yourself are having or have had at some point and I think you will identify with the characters on multiple levels.

I love it when the author makes me FEEL every emotion, every detail as I read and that is, without a doubt, accomplished in this book. You will feel what the characters feel—their devastation, desperation, anger, determination, joy, their struggles with their faith as God works to draw them near and strengthen them. Cyprus’ own struggle with wondering about God’s purpose for her struck close to home. How often do we feel like Cyprus—unsure of the Lord’s purpose for us, unsure if what we are doing has “enough” purpose or is noble or good enough, feeling like there must be something greater to be done and that what we are doing maybe isn’t enough?

Every aspect of this book drew me in, from the characters to the emotions to the setting to the spot on truths exhibited. It’s hard to even describe how wonderfully done this book is and the impact it had on me as I read. It is filled to overflowing with rich, Biblical truths woven into the story. It’s as if it’s really many stories, many aspects all incredibly painted into an intricate masterpiece. It’s not just a story of faith or romance or struggle or hope or truth. It’s all those threads interwoven to make a beautiful yet strong piece.

It’s the story:
~of those times in our lives when we face hardship that God has allowed for His ultimate will and glory to be accomplished. You know—those circumstances where you wonder, “God, what are You doing here? What good could possibly ever come from this?” But then, He does something magnificent. He makes the ugly, the broken in our lives beautiful through the very hardship that seemed at one time like it might be impossible to overcome.

~of sacrifice, of loving others above yourself.

~of surrender, of letting go, of giving yourself up to His plan as He guides, of knowing that He will provide, of obedience in the midst of trial and struggle and adversity.

~of seeking God’s will above your own, of trusting Him to come through for you.

~of when He is truly your only hope and you must rely on Him as you never have before.

~of how He speaks to us, guides us, uses us to minister to others.

~of choosing to forgive and to love even when you’ve been hurt, of not allowing hurt and bitterness to fester and hinder.

~of overcoming through the work and power of the Holy One, of allowing Him to guide you in each step taken, of learning to hear His voice.

~that demonstrates the mighty hand of God at work even long ago to put into action things that would answer the needs you would have in the future.

“O Lord, You are my God; I will exalt You, I will give thanks to Your name; For You have worked wonders, plans formed long ago, with perfect faithfulness.” ~Isaiah 25:1

Giver of Wonders is an engaging and thought provoking book. It’s one of those books that I feel like I will need to read many times in order to soak up the many depths and layers and richness and truths in it. In it, you’ll find a book that will cause you to stop and wonder over the Giver of Wonders and the beautiful Biblical truths woven in will resonate as you read. Every inch of this book points to the Giver of Wonders and the precious work of His hands that He does for us, in us, and through us. I am thankful and blessed to have had the chance to read this book.

P.S.-I highly recommend checking out the Author’s Note at the end of the book.

Blog Stops

December 6: Neverending Stories

December 6: Blossoms and Blessings

December 7: Moments Dipped in Ink

December 7: A Greater Yes

December 8: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses

December 8: Book by Book

December 9: Stuff & Nonsense

December 9: Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner

December 10: Blogging With Carol

December 10: Giveaway Lady

December 11: New Horizon Reviews

December 11: A Simple Life, really?!

December 12: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

December 12: Genesis 5020

December 13: Daysong Reflections

December 13: Inklings and Notions

December 14: A Reader’s Brain

December 14: Pause for Tales

December 15: Redeemed Hope Dweller

December 15: simple harvest reads

December 16: Baker Kella

December 16: For The Love of Books

December 17: Bibliophile Reviews

December 17: Reader’s Cozy Corner

December 18: Henry Happens

December 18: Bigreadersite

December 19: History, Hope, Laughter & Happily-ever-after

December 19: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Roseanna is giving away a stocking full of wonder! Click on the stocking below to enter. Be sure to comment on this blog post to claim nine extra entries in the giveaway!

stocking-148x300

 

**I was provided a free copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

A Royal Christmas Wedding #Review and #Giveaway

a-royal-christmas-wedding-correct-dates

To purchase your copy, click here.

About the Book

a-royal-christmas-wedding-kd2-rev1-197x300

Genre: Christian Romance/Christmas

Release Date: October 18, 2016

Book Format: Paperback & Ebook

Avery Truitt aches for true love—the kind she once shared with Prince Colin. Can she dare to hope for happily ever after, or is a fairy-tale ending beyond reach?

College volleyball star Avery Truitt has not seen her former flame, Prince Colin of Brighton Kingdom, since he suddenly pushed her away five years ago. But now, the sadness of losing her father and the joy of her sister Susanna’s pregnancy have brought Avery back to Brighton just in time for Cathedral City’s enchanting Christmas season.

Avery knows she can’t avoid seeing Colin—now the Kingdom’s most eligible bachelor—whether or not her heart is ready to relive the pain. But seeing him again might bring her the closure she needs after all this time.

When Colin finds himself at the center of a centuries-old Brighton tradition, he must decide whether to follow the path laid out before him or follow his heart to the only woman for whom he would ring the Pembroke Chapel Bell.

Can Colin convince Avery to meet him at the chapel on Christmas morning—as tradition dictates—or will Avery run back to her St. Simons home and pursue a coaching career as planned?

In the fourth installment of the Royal Wedding Series, New York Times bestselling novelist, Rachel Hauck, weaves a charming story of holiday romance as two broken hearts seek the love they once knew.

About the Author

rachel-hauck-hr-1-214x300

Rachel Hauck is a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling, and award-winning author.

A graduate of Ohio State University with a degree in Journalism, Rachel worked in the corporate software world before planting her backside in an uncomfortable chair to write full-time in 2004.

She serves on the Executive Board for American Christian Fiction Writers and leads worship at their annual conference. She is a mentor and book therapist at My Book Therapy, and conference speaker.

Rachel lives in central Florida with her husband and pets, and writes from her two-story tower in an exceedingly more comfy chair. She is a huge Buckeyes football fan.

Guest Post from Rachel Hauck

I don’t think we can ever get enough of royals or Christmas, do you? The two just seem to go together.

The Bible tells us eternity is written on our hearts. (Ecc. 3:11) I wonder if it’s also written on our hearts to be princesses in a grand, beautiful, perfect kingdom.

That being said, welcome to The Royal Christmas Wedding blog tour. My deepest thanks to all the bloggers, reviewers, and readers for hosting and visiting this tour. I’m excited to share this story with you all.

The hero and heroine, Prince Colin and Avery Truitt, first met in Once Upon A Prince at King Nathaniel’s coronation.

I hadn’t planned to write a spinoff story with the two of them. In fact, I didn’t even know Prince Colin existed until Avery walked into the abbey for the coronation and glanced across the sanctuary into his eyes.

Here’s his introduction:

Lean, aristocratic with an outdoorsman ruddiness, he nearly made Susanna swoon when he winked at Avery.

I liked Colin immediately. So did Avery. As well as a lot of you.

When my publisher asked me to write their story, it would be two years before the book would release. Plenty of time, right?

But “time crunch” is the name of the game with most writers. Between life, rewrites, edits, and promotional activity, we often find ourselves hurrying toward a deadline. Well, at least I do.

In the fall of 2015 I was writing The Wedding Shop and A Royal Christmas Wedding at the same time.

I’d also dealt with a physical issue that left me shaky. Could I write two books in five months? Did I want to even make the attempt?

If I said no, publication dates would be pushed out, causing a year delay on A Royal Christmas Wedding. And I knew that was something I did not want to do.

Publishing is a long game. Books are contracted and due 12 to 18, even 24 months, before release dates. Time must be carved out for rewrites and editing, marketing and promotion. Review copies go out at least five months in advance.

So I agreed to write both books. I told my editor, “Diamonds come from pressure.”

Coming up with Avery and Prince Colin’s story wasn’t as easy as I’d planned. Since they met in Once Upon A Prince as teenagers, I struggled with how to advance their age and relationship, and how to present them as the book opened.

Where had their relationship gone “between the books?”

When I came up with the idea of the Pembroke Chapel bell, the story magic began to happen. One of the things I love in the royal wedding books is the fairytale aspect. Looking for something out of the ordinary.

Even though my writing time was tight, writing Avery and Colin’s story was a joy. Once again I wish I could visit Brighton, eat a puff, and royal watch for the Strattons!

I hope you found a few sweet spots in the story, all wrapped in Christmas holiday cheer, and enjoyed your time with me in Brighton Kingdom.

Merry Christmas!

My Thoughts on A Royal Christmas Wedding

A Royal Christmas Wedding by Rachel Hauck makes for a wonderful Christmas time read! I’ve enjoyed each of her books that I’ve read and this is another great one. I appreciate the richness of her stories and how deep they go, with all of it pointing back to the One who loves us, who takes care of all, who has the power to redeem and to give purpose to us. There are always layers to her stories and I love how she develops them. A Royal Christmas Wedding is filled with that richness and development.

Ms. Hauck does an incredible job of making the characters of A Royal Christmas Wedding relatable and engaging. The characters are complex and well developed. They are not perfect and they have their own struggles to walk through. Avery and Colin both captured my attention and held it. Each of them had a battle to face in order to reach a place where they could be together again. This book is truly the story of one woman’s journey in letting go and trusting God for His best as well as the story of one man’s journey in learning the voice of God, obeying, and becoming the man God wants Him to be.

I love the idea of the old time traditions of Brighton that are mentioned in this book and the richness Ms. Hauck adds to Brighton’s history as well as to the story overall. There is a scene in which two characters are discussing the tradition that the book is all about. They are talking about how it is the groom’s job to prepare the wedding, the reception, and the honeymoon for his bride. I absolutely loved the symbolism here. It made me think of how Christ is doing that for His bride, the church; of how He is taking care of everything, taking on the burden, and the bride simply has to accept the invitation and enter in to the relationship with Him.

Ms. Hauck’s writing gently and genuinely works to turn your heart to the true answer as you read and I loved just how she did so in A Royal Christmas Wedding. It is definitely a book worth checking out!

Blog Stops

December 8: Book Reviews From an Avid Reader
December 8: New Horizon Reviews
December 8: inklings and notions
December 9: Reading Is My SuperPower
December 9: Redeemed Hope Dweller
December 9: Book by Book
December 10: His Grace is Sufficient
December 10: Blossoms and Blessings
December 10: Pause for Tales
December 11: Quiet Quilter
December 11: Ashley’s Bookshelf
December 11: Reviewing Novels Online
December 12: Bibliophile Reviews
December 12: Lights in a Dark World
December 12: Splashes of Joy
December 13: Moments Dipped in Ink
December 13: Neverending Stories
December 13: Through the Open Window
December 14: The Power of Words
December 14: Counting Pinecones
December 14: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS
December 15: Book Bites, Bee Stings, and Butterfly Kisses
December 15: Genesis 5020
December 15: CTF Devourer
December 16: Lighthouse Academy
December 16: God’s Little Bookworm
December 16: Christian Bookaholic
December 17: Smiling Book Reviews
December 17: God is Love
December 17: A Simple Life, really?!
December 18: A Holland Reads
December 18: The Scribbler
December 18: Faith * Love * Books
December 19: By The Book
December 19: Karen Sue Hadley
December 19: Southern Chelle
December 20: Faithfully Bookish
December 20: Books. Books. And More Books
December 20: A Baker’s Perspective
December 21: ASC Book Reviews
December 21: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

 

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card plus a copy of A Royal Christmas Wedding and a copy of The Wedding Shop. Click the graphic below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post to earn 9 extra entries in the giveaway!

a-royal-christmas-gp-300x228

 

**I was provided a free copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

Garden of Her Heart Blog Tour, Review, and #Giveaway

Y’all, today I have the incredible privilege of participating in a blog tour for Shanna Hatfield’s Garden of Her Heart, an amazing book that is the start of her new series, Hearts of the War. Shanna was the guest of my first Author Spotlight several months ago. If you’d like to get to know her a little better, feel free to check out my fun interview with her here.

I love Shanna’s writing, and Garden of Her Heart is no exception. Take a look at the special tour post below that includes a quick interview with Miko, the heroine of Garden of Her Heart, and an excerpt from the book. Then check out my review of the book (basically why I think you should take the time to read this book) and a GIVEAWAY!

blog-tour

USA Today Bestselling Author Shanna Hatfield joins us with her latest release, a sweet World War II romance.break-2

Thank you for hosting me today, Julie. It’s such a pleasure to be here on your blog. I thought it might be fun for you and your readers to meet Miko Nishimura from  Garden of Her Heart.

Thank you for joining us, Miko!

Miko: Hello. Thank you for welcoming me here today.

Can you tell us a little about how you ended up as a fugitive in the land of your birth? 

Miko: I was out of town, visiting my best friend, when the order came down for all Japanese Americans in our area to report to an assembly center. My parents couldn’t find my friend’s number, and by the time they got in touch with me, it was nearing the  deadline to report. After some difficulty procuring a bus ticket, I finally started home to Portland. But the bus driver took exception to my presence on the bus. I ended up walking about twenty miles to my grandparents’ farm. By the time I arrived, my family had already left for the assembly center and I found a wounded soldier at the back step, about to lose his battle to survive. I couldn’t leave him, so I stayed. Because I failed to report, I became a fugitive.

What do you think of the soldier? 

Miko: He’s um… (blushes) very handsome, and tall. He seems kind and gentle. From what I’ve observed, he is intelligent and has a sense of humor.

He sounds pretty dreamy.

Miko: He is.

If you could share one piece of advice with people, what would it be?

Miko: Be kind. I can’t think of any one thing that could change so much of what is wrong in the world if more people would just be kind.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with readers today? 

Miko: An invitation to read Garden of Her Heart. It’s a romance, but it’s also a story of hope and faith and courage – even in the face of great adversity.

garden-of-her-heart-cover

Can forbidden love blossom

   amid the constraints of war?

The moment the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, life shifted for Miko Nishimura. Desperate to reach the Portland Assembly Center for Japanese-Americans, she’s kicked off the bus miles from town. Every tick of the clock pushes her closer to becoming a fugitive in the land of her birth. Exhausted, she stumbles to her grandparents’ abandoned farm only to find a dying soldier sprawled across the step. Unable to leave him, she forsakes all else to keep him alive.

After crashing his plane in the Battle of the Atlantic, the doctors condemn Captain Rock Laroux to die. Determined to meet his maker beneath a blue sky at his family home, he sneaks out of the hospital. Weary and half out of his mind, he makes it as far as a produce stand he remembers from his youth. Rather than surrender to death, Rock fights a battle of the heart as he falls in love with the beautiful Japanese woman who saves his life.

A poignant, sweet romance, Garden of Her Heart proves love can bloom in unlikely places even under the most challenging circumstances.

Don’t miss out on this beautiful happy ever after. Get your copy today!

Available on:

   

break-2

Excerpt:

Dazed and drained, Miko came to her senses as she reached a road she recognized in the predawn light. It led to a farm owned by one of her grandparents’ neighbors. If she cut through their pasture, it would save her a few miles of walking.

She pushed down the wires of the fence and stepped over it, then reached back for her suitcase. The barbed wire caught her coat. Miko jerked it away from the snag and rolled her eyes in frustration when the fabric ripped.

Sudden anger, at herself for her own arrogance and stupidity as well as the circumstances that left her walking through the woods in the rain at night, fueled her steps. Indignation lent her spent body strength as she hurried across the pasture. A few cows tossed uninterested glances her direction, but none moved her way.

Relieved when she reached the far end of the pasture, she hurried over the fence and along the edge of the trees that circled the vast acres her grandparents owned.

The first fingers of dawn stretched across the drab sky as she stepped from the trees and swallowed back a sob at the sight of her grandparents’ produce stand. As long as Miko could remember, her family had sold produce from the red-painted structure filled with shelves and bins to hold every type of vegetable and fruit the fertile soil would grow.

A hundred yards behind the produce stand, a white picket fence surrounded the cheery yellow bungalow home her grandparents had built in the mid-1920s. With a wide porch and a plethora of flowers surrounding all four sides, the house appeared welcoming. Beyond the yard, a barn and large storage building, along with a collection of outbuildings, alluded to a prosperous farm.

With a prayer to find her family waiting inside for her, she raced up the front steps of the porch and tried the door. The knob rattled but didn’t turn, locked from the inside. Miko set down her suitcase and rushed around to the back door. In her haste, she tripped over the body of a man as he sprawled across the back step.

Unconscious, the uniformed soldier shuddered against the chill in the air, his clothes every bit as wet as hers. At least his jerky tremors assured her he wasn’t dead.

Panicked, she pounded on the door. “It’s Miko! Open the door! Please!” Fist banging against the wood, she called out to her grandparents, willing them to be there.

All remained eerily silent in the house. Single-minded in her efforts to enter the dwelling, Miko stepped over the man and lifted a brick from the border edging the flowerbed. With a spare key in her hand, she jammed it in the lock and pushed the door open, rushing inside.

gohh-gif

break-2

shanna-3USA Today Bestselling Author Shanna Hatfield writes character-driven romances with relatable heroes and heroines. Her historical westerns have been described as “reminiscent of the era captured by Bonanza and The Virginian” while her contemporary works have been called “laugh-out-loud funny, and a little heart-pumping sexy without being explicit in any way.”

Convinced everyone deserves a happy ending, this hopeless romantic is out to make it happen, one story at a time. When she isn’t writing or indulging in chocolate (dark and decadent, please), Shanna hangs out with her husband, lovingly known as Captain Cavedweller.

Find Shanna’s books at:

Amazon | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords | Apple | Audible

Shanna loves to hear from readers. Follow her online at:

ShannaHatfield | Facebook | Newsletter | Pinterest | Goodreads | You Tube | Twitter

purple-divider-clipart-1

My Review:

From the first sentence, I was drawn into the story and Miko’s plight. Shanna doesn’t shy away from the reality of the ridicule the Japanese Americans faced during World War II while still keeping the story hopeful. Her vivid descriptions of the people, places, and situations in the book will take you back in time to a bygone era and make you feel like you’re there. Every scene, every moment is filled with the poignant emotions of the time. You can tell that Shanna did her research down to the minutest detail, and it shows in the way the story pulls you into the very essence and atmosphere of the time.

The love story of the book is one of the most touching ones I’ve read. Each scene, each step, each stage of their friendship turned love story captured my attention and my heart. I felt deeply the heartrending, bittersweet moments that passed between Rock and Miko as they struggled to figure out what to do about her situation and about her family’s farm. I loved watching their relationship change and grow, made strong even in the challenges and adversities they faced together. The gentle moments of their slowly building love are so moving and perfect, though Miko is resistant to letting herself give in to her feelings out of fear for what Rock would face for choosing to be with her. Rock’s caring restraint as he holds himself in check to prove his love for Miko is real and steadfast and as he patiently waits for Miko to come to him when she’s ready is precious. Their romance is heart meltingly tender and unforgettable. All of Shanna’s romances have sweet, tender moments, but to me, Garden of Her heart is the tenderest of her sweet romances and I felt it to my core.

The supporting characters of the novel are more than worth a mention. Each of them truly brings a needed element to the story in his or her own way. Learning about and getting to know Miko’s family accentuates the richness of her ancestry and heritage. Checking in with them throughout the book allows for us to get a glimpse into the conditions and struggles they faced while also showing us their courage and strength. The family on the neighboring land adds their own element of help and charm to the story in so many different ways. I can’t wait for you to meet the delightfully precocious character of Petey. His engaging personality and vibrant chatter are, in my opinion, an essential part of giving the novel some moments of humor and extra warmth. Pastor Clark is indispensable as a stand in father/uncle type figure for both Miko and Rock. Even the villain of the story plays his role perfectly in adding some surprising twists and turns to the story and efficiently creeping me out.

Garden of Her Heart will evoke in you an array of emotions—from anxiousness, to anger, to frustration, to heartache, to joy, to hope and so many more. The characters latched onto my heart and did not let go. There was just something about them and about their story that held me captive and I didn’t want the story to end. It was a wonderfully satisfying ending while still giving the feeling that it was really just the beginning of a lasting and epic love story. I would not object at all to catching up with this family of characters in an epilogue or novella. It is well worth the read.

Shanna dedicates Garden of Her Heartto those who face adversity with courage, strength, and hope” and that is a perfect summation of the characters in this story. Her preface as well as her note at the end are sincere and heartfelt additions to the story. I highly recommend making sure you read them both.

Take a chance on this great book and let it invite you in as a front row guest to the unfolding of the beginning of an enduring love story.

Now for a GIVEAWAY! Click on the graphic below to enter for a chance to win one Kindle version of Garden of Her Heart.

adobe-spark-125